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Leah Farrell/
Lord Mayor

Green Party councillor Hazel Chu to run as independent candidate in Seanad by-election

She did not receive backing from her party to run.

GREEN PARTY COUNCILLOR Hazel Chu has announced that she will run as an independent candidate in the upcoming Seanad by-election.

Chu, the Lord Mayor of Dublin and the Green Party’s chairperson, did not receive backing from her party to run but submitted a nomination for the Industrial and Commercial panel after securing enough nominations to appear on the ballot.

In a statement to party members this evening, she said that she would not seek support from the party, although she confirmed that she contacted leader Eamon Ryan, deputy leader Catherine Martin and the Green Party’s executive committee about the move.

“I am not looking for any support from the party since this was a personal choice to ensure that there is proper representation,” she said.

“In the current climate, it is important to have women and minorities represented at this election. This choice, as I said, is a personal one, as is my candidacy.

“After spending the year speaking to children from all backgrounds that anyone can run for election, I felt that it was essential I follow what I preach.”

Chu also referenced the abuse she has received from trolls online, adding that there were no other candidates from a diverse background on the ballot for the by-election.

The Irish Independent reports that she received nominations from Catherine Martin, as well as Green Party TDs Neasa Hourigan, Patrick Costello and Francis Noel Duffy, senators from the party, and two independent senators.

The by-election will be held to fill two vacancies in the Seanad, and will take place via postal voting from 7 April to 21 April.

One vacancy arose after former Fine Gael senator Michael D’Arcy resigned to become chief executive of the Irish Association of Investment Managers.

Former Sinn Féin senator Elisha McCallion also resigned following a controversy over Covid-19 grants in Northern Ireland.

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