2024 is Limerick’s chance for change. That’s according to People Before Profit (PBP) as they launched their campaign for Limerick’s Directly Elected Mayor (DEM).
Local candidate Ruairí Fahy has already announced his intention to represent Limerick City North in the upcoming local elections, and this week was selected by PBP to contest the Directly Elected Mayor’s seat.
The party believes Limerick needs “an activist mayor, who will live on a workers’ wage and be on the side of the people”.
“The Directly Elected Mayor was supposed to give more power to the people of Limerick to control our future, to undo the damage done by being the dumping ground for dirty industries and an afterthought in a development policy that only focuses on the expansion of Dublin,” Mr Fahy claimed.
“In reality the legislation has delivered little more than shuffling the deck of existing powers and hiding the unelected executive further from accountability.
“We have one of the most centralised systems of government in Europe and even then democracy is being eroded as the state moves more decision making to opaque companies like the LDA (Land Development Agency) or focuses public money on de-risking developments for international private financiers instead of building up publicly owned and controlled infrastructure.”
Despite his objections, Mr Fahy is putting himself forward for the role of Directly Elected Mayor of Limerick.
He maintains that, even if the legislation doesn’t deliver, the role will have the biggest mandate in the country for building new systems of local democracy.
It could, he suggests, build the foundations for a post-capitalist society that operates not for the international markets but on the needs of people and the planet.
“We have a chance for change but that change can only be won by people organising from bottom up.”