The battle for control of Co. Council could go down to the wire

Following the local elections, the battle for control of Cork County Council is likely to be fraught, with parties and independents locked in discussions this week as the council gears up for its first meeting tomorrow, Friday. Fianna Fáil has the biggest party representation on the 55-member Cork County Council, with 17 elected representatives, while Fine Gael has 16, Sinn Féin 10, Labour 2, and there are 10 Independents.

Achieving the magic 28 majority will take considerable discussion. Fianna Fáil and Fine Gael have 33 members and, should they agree, they could form a solid working majority. The Sinn Féin block of 10 could, how-ever, be kingmakers if they choose to enter into an agreement, but such an alliance would need at least one from the Indepen-dent ranks if it were with FF, and two if it were with FG, and even then it would still be only a wafer-thin working arrangement.

It is possible that agree-ment may not be reached until the hours immediately before the council is due to convene tomorrow.

The six councillors from the Kanturk-Mallow election taking their place around the council table tomorrow are John Paul O’Shea, Independent, Dan Joe Fitzgerald and Bernard Moynihan (FF), Gerard Murphy (FG), Melissa Mullane (SF) and Timmy Collins (Independent).