Speaking today (Tuesday) Bernard Allen TD, Fine Gael Cork North Central TD and Chairman of the PAC, said: Having consulted with my family and friends, I have decided not to contest the next General Election. It is with great reluctance that I have reached this decision especially at a time when I am convinced that the Irish people will give Enda Kenny and the Fine Gael Party a strong mandate to lead this country out of the mire that it is in. Our country, at this critical time in its history, needs a man of his character, vision, courage and honesty to lead it.
I have informed Enda Kenny of my decision and he understands and accepts it.
I wish to thank my wife, Marie, and my daughters, my extended family, good friends and supporters for their unending support, patience and encouragement during my 32 years in public life, 30 of which were spent in Dáil Éireann.
In particular, I wish to thank the people of the Cork North Central Constituency for their unstinting support during this time. It has been a tremendous honour and privilege for me to have represented them in public office as an Alderman, Lord Mayor of Cork, TD and Minister. I hope that they will judge me as having lived up to my responsibilities and the trust they placed in me.
Fine Gael Leader Enda Kenny TD wished Bernard the very best: I fully understand the decision made by Bernard Allen. I thank him for his exemplary public service over many years, and for his outstanding role as Chairman of the Dáils most powerful committee, the Committee of Public Accounts. I would like to wish Bernard, his wife Marie, and all his family nothing but the best in the years ahead.