MICHAEL Noonan is to step down as Minister for Finance and will not seek a seat in the next General Election nor will he seek a seat at the next cabinet table.
After Taoiseach Enda Kenny announced that he would be stepping down as leader of the Fine Gael party, the Limerick TD of 36 years said that the time was now “for a new Finance Minister to take up office.
Having introduced six budgets and one supplementary budget, the secondary school teacher who turns 74 this Sunday said that he was “honoured to serve as Minister for Finance since March 2011.
“Ireland is the fastest growing economy in Europe, the budget is almost balanced and we are on the cusp of full employment.
Minister Noonan said that he would continue to carry out his duties until a new party leader is elected.
“I will not be seeking re-election to Dáil Éireann at the next General Election. It has been a privilege to represent the people of Limerick since I was first elected in 1981 and I look forward to continuing to do so until an election is called.
The Loughill native has had the privilege of serving as a Minister in every Fine Gael led Government since 1982.
He has held positions as Fine gael party leader ad ministerial portfolios in health, industry and commerce, and justice.
Prior to that, Michael Noonan was first elected to Limerick County Council in 1974 and resigned his seat after he was elected as a first time TD in 1981.