Belfast Telegraph

Young gun aims for council

Seamas de Faoite has become the youngest ever candidate selected by the SDLP — at just 18 years of age.

He has been selected to contest the east Belfast Pottinger electoral area in the May council elections.

Mr de Faoite, who will turn 19 before polling day, said: “I have several years of local political experience behind me and strong family roots across the area.”

De Faoite is vice-chair of SDLP Youth and an active party member. “I’ve been with the SDLP for the last three years.

“I was involved with the Westminster and European election campaigns and heavily involved with [South Belfast MP] Alisdair McDonnell’s campaign.”

He said he aimed to serve the voters: “My focus is on delivering for the people on the bread-and-butter issues; that is my responsibility as a councillor and a candidate.

“I will be tackling constituency work and the basic things like dealing with people’s bins and keeping the streets clean,” he added.

He is currently studying international politics at the University of Ulster.

He was an active member of Labour Youth in the Republic of Ireland and set up a ‘maverick’ page on the Bebo site against the Lisbon Treaty named ‘No to Lisbon’. This was considered to be an individual agenda and flew in the face of the Irish Labour party’s policy in favour of Lisbon.

Seamas said: “Here I will be working on the SDLP brand of representation — hard work and delivery for everybody.

“Once you put in the work that’s what matters the most,” he added.

Belfast Telegraph

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