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Bertie: Fianna Fáil won't be back on government benches after next election

The former Taoiseach and party leader said he does think they will make a comeback and he hopes he lives to see it.

Michael Martin and Bertie Ahern back in 2001.
Michael Martin and Bertie Ahern back in 2001.
Image: Leon Farrell/Photocall Ireland

FORMER TAOISEACH BERTIE Ahern has said that while he believes Fianna Fáil will return to government in the future, it will not be after the next general election.

Speaking to UTV Ireland’s political editor Mary Regan today, Ahern said “they will come back again” but it will be a gradual process.

“It’s not going to be this election – I don’t think they’ll expect that,” he said.

When asked if he believed Micheál Martin will be leader of Fianna Fáil when they make it back onto government benches in the Dáil, he responded: “God knows, it depends on how long it takes”. Ahern has previously said he doesn’t think much of the party’s current leader.

Ahern said he hopes to live to see Fianna Fáil’s comeback but for now he expects them to be the main opposition party after the next election, saying “that’s the role I’d like to see them in”.

On the banking inquiry, he said he is happy to appear if asked and he hopes that some lessons will be learned from it. However he said they should “just get on with it” as further delays may render the inquiry irrelevant.

Read: Check out this clip of Bertie Ahern talking about tax cheats in 1993>

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