Two new Keys candidates come forward

Bill Malarkey
Bill Malarkey

Two more Keys candidates have come forward.

The Isle of Man will go to the polls in September to elect the Manx parliament’s lower house.

Bill Malarkey has announced he’s going to fight the Douglas South constituency again while Castletown commissioner Richard McAleer is going to fight one of the new constituencies in the south of the island.

Mr Malarkey first became an MHK in 2006 in the constituency when he fought as a Liberal Vannin candidate.

However, he fell out with the party and became an independent. In the 2011 election, the voters rejected him in favour of Kate Beecroft, now the leader of Liberal Vannin.

But Mr Malarkey made a come back in a by-election last year after David Cretney, the constituency’s other MHK, became an MLC.

A press statement from Mr Malarkey reads:

‘Proudly serving Douglas South constituents for the past 13 months has reminded me each day of my passion for our community.

‘I will go to the polls knowing that I have stood by the promises I made in my manifesto and did “hit the ground running”.

‘Local, national and international community leadership takes courage in challenging times.

‘Crucial decisions will have to be made for our future: how to protect our sea services; how to promote our potential following “Brexit”; how to ensure that we manage our pension legacy debt, to name just a few. ‘It is time to take a proactive stance - our nation belongs to us, the people.’

The constituencies at this year’s general election are going to be different after reform. All will now elect two MHKs.

In the south of the island, there has been a shake-up with Castletown joining Arbory and Malew in one constituency. Mr McAleer is to stand there.

In the past Castletown was a single-MHK constituency, while Arbory was in the three-seat Rushen constituency and Malew part of Malew and Santon.

In a press statement, Mr McAleer said: ‘This is without doubt the most challenging period that the island has faced in the last decade. I believe the island needs a new generation of politicians, professional people with a wide range of skills from all walks of life.

‘MHKs will have to be prepared to work harder than ever, be creative in finding solutions to resolve the many issues that will undoubtedly arise for the island, especially as a result of the UK Brexit vote.’

He adds: ‘During the last five years, many thousands of pounds have been wasted on one consultation after another, most notably on the National Insurance Fund and the TT World Series. The Isle of Man has always been successful in developing new niche markets, that ability will be essential in the coming years. The next government needs to identify its key priorities and these must include the health service and education.

‘The problems at the hospital have been well documented, to provide a first class service you must have a motivated workforce. The staff have been demoralised by cutback after cutback. I would like to see a return of the in-house nursing training that has worked so well for decades. Staff levels are at times dangerously low and staff are being asked to work back to back shifts. This leads to tiredness and the risk of mistakes being made.

‘The global recession, financial pressures and reductions in the VAT share from the UK, have all led to budgets being strained and it is essential that savings are made through reductions in red tape. However, it is vital that any cuts or savings are not to the detriment of frontline services.’

Mr McAleer, aged 46, has been a commissioner in Castletown for the past four years and is currently the chairman.

He has worked in the civil service and the finance sector in the Isle of Man for over 20 years.

He is a director of the Southern 100.

NOTE: We are happy to give coverage to candidates but it is helpful to us if, when they contact us, they include a daytime phone number.

We also would like a good-quality photograph that’s capable of being reproduced in print.

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