« BackDan Kiely fails in bid to regain seat on KCC

Dan Kiely has failed in his bid to retake his seat on Kerry County Council.

Dan Kiely

Representation for the Listowel Municipal area will remain unchanged following a Supreme Court challenge and an historic two day count afresh.

In the early hours of this morning, following 11 counts, the seven councillors who will represent the area were confirmed.

It was an unprecedented political and legal battle dating back to the 2014 local elections.

Independent Dan Kiely who had lost his place on Kerry County Council by just two votes disputed the procedures used in determining spoiled votes.

Just five votes had separated Dan Kiely and Cllrs Mike Kennelly of FG and Jimmy Moloney of FF.

Following a challenge that went all the way to the Supreme Court a count afresh was ordered and began at the John Mitchels GAA Clubhouse in Tralee on Wednesday morning.

After a further road trip to Limerick Circuit Court on Thursday morning to seek a ruling from Judge Tom O Donnell on 32 disputed papers the count got underway yesterday afternoon.

It largely mirrored the 2014 sequence of events with Cllr John Brassil FF and Robert Beasley SF reaching the quota of 1,843 votes on the first count. It was the 7th count before there were joined by FG’s Aoife Thornton.

As it had in the 2014 election it was the 11th count that would prove decisive with the election of Dianne Nolan SF on reaching the quota, then Mike Kennelly FG, Jimmy Moloney FF and Liam Purtil FG as the three remaining candidates with Mr Kiely’s elimination as the lowest of the four.

The margin between Dan Kiely and Jimmy Moloney this time round was 4 votes, 2 higher than the original 2014 count.

Mr Kiely said that he did not regret taking the legal challenge while both Cllr Moloney and Cllr Kennelly said the count afresh had been hanging over them and they were relieved it’s over.

Although announced by the Returning Officer the count afresh will need to be confirmed and signed off on by supervising Judge Tom O Donnell today.

results count afresh

With even greater spoils to play for on February 26th the Listowel Count afresh will remain in the political annals for many years to come in the legal precedents it has set on how counts and in particular votes are adjudicated on.