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11 candidates confirmed to run in Meath East by-election

Four independent candidates have filed paperwork to run against seven candidates from parties big and small.

Image: Laura Hutton/Photocall Ireland

A TOTAL OF 11 candidates have been confirmed to run in the Dáil by-election for the vacant seat in Meath East.

Candidates had until 12pm today to file the appropriate paperwork with the returning officer.

Fine Gael’s candidate Helen McEntee will seek to win the seat vacated by the death of her father Shane, the junior minister for food safety.

A former TD for the area, Senator Thomas Byrne, will look to win the seat for Fianna Fáil, while Labour will field county councillor Eoin Holmes looking to pick up a seat.

Sinn Féin’s candidate, Darren O’Rourke, is a policy advisor to his party’s health spokesman Caoimhghín Ó Caoláin. The Green Party candidate Seán Ó Buachalla is a development officer for youth clubs.

The leader of the recently formed Direct Democracy Ireland party, Ben Gilroy – who lives in Navan, just over the border in the neighbouring Meath West – and Seamus McDonagh of the Workers’ Party are the other candidates from recognised political parties.

In addition, four non-party candidates have entered the fray.

Charlie Keddy of Kilcoole in Co Wicklow, a plumber who has contested the last four general elections in Wicklow, has filed the paperwork to run in Meath. Jim Tallon, a farmer who also contested the 2011 election in Wicklow and is a regular candidate, is also set to run.

Mick Martin of Slane, a financial services advisor, will run for the first time, as will psychiatric nurse Gerard O’Brien from Navan.

Candidates now have until the end of the week to withdraw their candidacy. Voting takes place a fortnight from today.

Read: Meath East by-election: Here are the candidates and here’s what they’re saying

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Gavan Reilly

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