Speaking on his announcement as a potential candidate, Alan Kelly, stated he was ‘honoured and delighted’ to be part of Labour’s election team.
“I am both honoured and delighted to accept Eamon Gilmore’s invitation to put myself forward as a candidate for Labour in North Tipperary/South Offaly.
“I will be putting myself forward at the party’s selection convention next week and will hopefully be a candidate in the general election and be part of the Labour team in Government. To do that I will be knocking on every door in the constituency asking them to support Labour in turning the country around.
“I have been asked by many friends, supporters and people in North Tipperary to stand in the general election. I felt it was impossible to say no. The country has been devastated by thirteen years of Fianna Fail rule. Our country has been left bankrupt, emigration has returned and people no longer have faith in this Government’s ability to get us out of this mess.
“Working in Europe, I have witnessed first hand the damage done to the country by this current government. They have hurt our pride in being Irish and they simply have to go.
“Working with Eamon Gilmore, I hope to be part of a Labour-led Government that can turn things round. Labour must stand forward. The values of decency that we espouse are exactly what the country needs for economic renewal.
“North Tipperary/South Offaly is yet another place that feels like it has been abandoned by the Government. They do not seem to have any vision or policy as to how to bring employment to small towns or rural areas and that is disgraceful.
“I am extremely proud of my record as an MEP, delivering on funding schemes for workers and small businesses, getting changes in the Irish regional aid map, pushing through financial regulation reform, being at the helm of the Irish banking situation and promoting our interests for a good deal for Ireland on the Common Agricultural Policy.
“I hope to bring my experience from working in Europe to be able to find a new direction and to work with Europe to get us out of this economic mess. Removing the current government is the first step and then from there we have to build a better future. I believe that working with Europe from Government is the best way to achieve this.
“There is a very serious disconnect between Europe and Ireland in how we discuss policy and politics. I hope to be someone who can bridge this gap if elected.
“I intend taking this message to every house in North Tipperary/South Offaly and I have no doubt that the Labour message will resonate there and that Labour will lead the next Government under Eamon Gilmore.”