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Green Party: We want to double party membership by 2016

The party, which celebrates its 30th anniversary in Irish politics today, has unveiled its plan for rebuilding the party.

File photo of Green Party leader Eamon Ryan
File photo of Green Party leader Eamon Ryan
Image: Mark Stedman/Photocall Ireland

THE GREEN PARTY has unveiled its plan to rebuild after the devastating blow caused by the general election earlier this year.

The proposals include a plan to double membership of the party to 2,000 by 2016,  establish voluntary teams to work on staffing and rebuilding the party, and provide effective solutions to “critical economic, social and environmental problems” faced by Irish society.

The party used its 30th anniversary today to unveil its new team of spokespeople and launch its strategic plan (PDF) for the next four years.

Fifteen people have been appointed as spokespeople to shadow each Ministerial portfolio in the Dail and provide a critique of government policy.

Party leader Eamon Ryan appointed Ciaran Cuffe as spokesperson on public expenditure while  former senator Mark Dearey is the new party spokesperson on finance.

New party chairman Roderic O’Gorman is spokesperson for social protection issues.

Seamus Sheridan, the co-founder of Sheridan’s Cheesemongers, will track agriculture and food, Catherine Martin, a secondary school teacher, will be following education, councillor Brian Meaney will take European affairs, Malcolm Noonan will track environment and local government, and Gareth McDaid will be the spokesperson on communications, energy and natural resources.

Today’s Sunday Times reports that the new frontbench will use Facebook and Twitter – rather than the Dáil – to provide opposition to the current government.

“The strategic plan has been developed following a period of regrouping, analysis and review with Green Party members,” said a spokesperson.

The plan’s stated aim is to “allow a new generation take up an active role in political life and through that work improve the quality of life of all our people”.

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The party is also holding a fundraising concert in Dublin’s Vicar Street this evening. It no longer receives funding from the State since it no longer has any parliamentarians.

The party had six TDs going into the general election in February of this year but lost all the seats and failed to gain any new ones. The party had been in coalition government with Fianna Fáil since 2007.

Watch Green Party leader Eamon Ryan talk about thirty years of the Green Party here:

(Video uploaded by GreenPartyIreland)

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Christine Bohan

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