by Michael McGrath.
His school nickname was Smiler, but John McGuinness TD  looked like a man with a pain in his face at the count when it became apparent that his younger brother Eugene was going to be elected as a councillor on Kilkenny county council early on Saturday.
Eugene hadn’t the ordinary campaign of his fellow candidates – he had to battle against John and his hatchetman G.I. Joe Malone as well, who were actively putting out the word against him, especially via mobile phone calls and texts across the city.

John is still silent about the rejected mosque because his son Councillor Andrew was in favour of it. John himself was at the recent Islamic Council do in the Rivercourt Hotel as an apologist for the Imam.

Andrew is a liberal, he is in much the same mould as those of his fellow Kilkenny councillors who lost their seats over the weekend. He does not have a strong  commitment to the Irish Nation and it now seems as if his father, the legendary TD has gone along with Andrew on this.

This was not, of course, a local election issue in the same way as the mosque victory was, but it will be a serious general election issue. Right now people across Kilkenny are asking, who will get the Ballybought Street houses -that Andrew has visited. Who will get the controversial Walkin Street apartments, who will get the Brogue Maker houses and apartments – will they be Irish or Incomers?

Our leaders, like John and Andrew in the future, are going to have to make their minds up about whether the Nation matters or not, whether the children of the Nation be housed?

Right now it seems like John and Andrew are turning their backs on the national ideal and even risking a nationalist party , like The National Party or Identity Ireland,  or even IREXIT, moving in here in the future.

This abysmal housing situation is destabilising the country and placing the future of the Irish nation at great risk. Such carry on caused the success of the Brexit referendum in England.

Instead of building houses our politicians have been more interested in building a mosque! That’s where our county council has been over the past twenty months since I first exposed the plans for the mosque here on the Kilkenny Journal.

We need a mass housing building project here in Kilkenny for the 2,500 on the Council housing list – all the newly elected councillors have as serious responsibility to all those people. The late Jackie Dowling built the whole of Kennyswell in the late 1940’s when there wasn’t as much as a JCB in the country!

This is simply not good enough from John or Andrew and this is why Eugene is an elected councillor this fine May evening in Kilkenny. With a general election on the way, John would want to put the smile back on his face fast!

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