Gary Gannon TD

A directly-elected Dublin mayor with vision – and executive powers – is needed more than ever 

Social Democrats TD Gary Gannon has renewed his call for a directly-elected mayor for the capital after it emerged that Dublin City Council has yet to appoint a permanent replacement for its outgoing chief executive Owen Keegan.

Deputy Gannon, who represents Dublin Central, said:

“The date of the current chief executive’s departure has been known for some time, so it is baffling that a successor is not lined up just weeks ahead of his retirement. Instead, the reins of the top job in the largest local authority in the State will be handed over to an interim CEO for an indeterminate period.

“At a time when Dublin is making headlines for all the wrong reasons, this is a highly unsatisfactory arrangement.

“It is symptomatic of the leadership vacuum that has resulted in the sad decline of our capital over several decades. For too long, unelected officials have made decisions for Dublin for which they will never be held accountable.

“That is why the next chief executive of Dublin City Council should be the first to report to a directly-elected mayor, with executive powers, who would be responsible for key areas such as homelessness, housing, transport and street cleaning.

“Lack of leadership lies at the heart of our city’s problems, so we need somebody who is ambitious for Dublin. An elected mayor would be able to set out their vision for the future of the capital and be accountable for how the local authority’s €1.5 billion budget is managed.

“In the event of Dublin getting a directly-elected mayor, the role of chief executive would no longer be the most powerful position in the city. Such change cannot come soon enough.

August 29, 2023

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