WATCH: History made as Uruemu Adejinmi becomes first African woman Longford county councillor

Liam Cosgrove

Reporter:

Liam Cosgrove

Email:

liam.cosgrove@longfordleader.ie


A new chapter in Longford's political history was made this afternoon as Uruemu Adejinmi became the first African woman to be elevated to the ranks of Longford County Council.

Ms Adejinmi assumed the seat vacated by Fianna Fáil's Joe Flaherty following the latter's election to the Dáíl three weeks ago.

The mother of three said she was greatly humbled to be afforded an opportunity to serve a community she has come to call her own.

A community activist for the past number of years, Ms Adejinmi was nominated to fill Mr Flaherty's seat at a council meeting earlier today by Fianna Fáil group leader Cllr Seamus Butler.

The Longford businessman said he was delighted to be able to put forward Ms Adejinmi's name, saying she represented the "new Irish" of the county's burgeoning migrant population.

Party colleague Cllr Martin Monaghan followed suit by seconding Ms Adejinmi's credentials.

"She has become a very important ally of mine over the past seven or eight months since I came into this council ," he said, while rhyming out the many local bodies his new county council colleague was already immersed in.

Cllr Peggy Nolan said she was especially delighted to see Longford County Council's female representation effectively double and the fresh impetus it would give to the local authority as a whole.

"I am delighted you are here with us," she told Ms Adejinmi.

"You are now the caretaker of the dreams, beliefs and aims of the people of this county. 

"We work as a team and you are now wearing the Longford jersey. I am delighted you are a woman and I am delighted to be able to say you are now a colleague of mine."

For her part, Ms Adejinmi singled out the support she received from her family, Longford's migrant populous and her fellow Fianna Fáil colleagues upon taking her seat.

There were warm words too for her predecessor and the part he played in encouraging her to take a more active role in local politics.

"Joe (Flaherty) got me into the party and he must have spotted my talent which is how I got involved," she said

Ms Adejinmi said while the occasion was an undoubtedly proud one for her and those closest to her, the hard work in effecting change had already begun.

"I think once elections are over party politics should be put aside so that we all work as a collective for the betterment of the community," she said.

"At the end of the day, we are all here because we love this town and county and it's about making sure we represent our residents and our community to the very best of our ability."