Donegal Seanad candidate appointed to the board of IMMA

Fine Gael's John McNulty
Fine Gael's John McNulty

A Donegal Fine Gael candidate for a vacant Seanad seat has been appointed to the board of the Irish Museum of Modern Art (IMMA).

The art gallery appointment of John McNulty came just six days before close of nominations for the Seanad vacancy, which is on the education and cultural panel, and will strengthen his artistic credentials.

John McNulty was last Thursday confirmed as the party's candidate for the Seanad seat left vacant due to the election of Deirdre Clune to the European Parliament in May.

The previous Thursday Mr McNulty was appointed to the board of the Irish Museum of Modern Art , a position which is unpaid but does involve travel expenses, by Arts Minister Heather Humphreys.

The Seanad vacancy will be filled by vote of TDs and Senators which means the Government effectively gets to choose who wins. But candidates have to show a track record in the Seanad panel to which they are assigned.

Mr McNulty was an unsuccessful candidate in local elections last May.

But a spokeswoman for the Arts Minister said Mr McNulty was still well-qualified for the IMMA membership.

The spokeswoman says Mr McNulty has been appointed because he has been involved in the local Tourism and Cultural committee in Kilcar, and has a track record in promoting culture, heritage, the GAA and the Irish language.

She added that he has been involved in a heritage restoration project, and festivals such as the Fleadh Ceol, and was currently driving a three-year Irish language development plan for the area.