LETTERKENNY is set to have the oldest mayor in Ireland.
Weeks ahead of his 88th birthday, Councillor Ian McGarvey will take over the town’s chain of office on June 11.
Elected into politics in 2004 at the age of 73, the Ramelton man became Donegal’s first Independent mayor in 2013 and Ireland’s oldest mayor in the process.
He will be presented with the mayoral chain from the current bearer, Jimmy Kavanagh, at the next meeting of Letterkenny Municipal District.
Ahead of his appointment, Mr McGarvey said he would work for all the people of the county.
“I was mayor before at county level and that was more extensive. So I’ll do whatever has to be done and I’ll try my best for all the people of Donegal,” he said.
The changing of the guard in Letterkenny follows a similar shake up in the Stranorlar Municipal District. Earlier this week Councillor Patrick McGowan was unanimously agreed as mayor there.
Outlining some of the challenges that he intends to meet head on, Councillor McGowan said, “The Ballybofey Stranorlar bypass as well as the Lifford to Letterkenny TEN-T projects are long overdue but the correct route needs to be selected, not just the shortest route or as some would believe, the cheapest route. I support a bypass but I will only support a route option that supports local business and local communities not just a quick fix.
“Our local hospitals are still very much under threat and we must speak out loud and clear in order to protect services for older people and others whom we have the honour to serve.”
Brexit also remains big concern for the wider Stranorlar area, said Mr McGowan.
“No special status exists for the people who live and work along the border even though the powers in Europe refer to border communities all the time. I think it is about time our Government and County Council started doing likewise.
Posted: 6:15 pm June 3, 2018