Fianna Fáil Chief Whip Michael Moynihan TD has said that Brian Crowley has been one of Ireland’s favourite and most successful politicians over the past three decades and his legacy will be felt for years to come.

Deputy Moynihan was commenting as Brian Crowley announced his retirement from electoral politics today in Cork. Brian announced that he would not be contesting the 2019 European Elections bringing to an end to his career in the European Parliament which first began in 1994.

Deputy Moynihan stated “Today is a bittersweet day for Brian. After a long and accomplished career he has decided not to contest the European Parliament elections in May. Brian drew from the immense legacy of his father Flor who worked tirelessly as a representative for the people of West Cork. He was also inspired in politics by the proud republican heritage of the Crowley family that traces back to the War of Independence. Those republican values were the hallmarks of his political career.

“Brian overcame personal adversity when he was paralysed in an accident at the age of 16. It’s a testament to his strength of character that he never allowed this challenge to overwhelm him or prevent him from achieving whatever he put his mind too. Brian was the first member of the Oireachtas to use a wheelchair . His record breaking performances in European elections stand as incontrovertible markers of his warm personality and commitment to the voters of Munster. I stood in awe of this electoral success.

“On a personal level I want to express my own thanks and gratitude for the help he gave me when I started out in my political career. Back in 1996 when I was considering getting involved in politics I met with Brian at the old Jury’s hotel in Cork. His sage advice and personal experience helped to guide my decision to fight for a seat. During those weeks and months he worked tirelessly for me which is something my family, supporters and I will never be able to repay or forget.

“One moment in particular that is etched into the memory of anyone who was present was in Knocknagree on the weekend prior to the election. Brian grasped the microphone in Doyle’s Fairfield Tavern and he electrified our campaign with a rousing speech that spoke to his commitment and energy for Cork and Fianna Fáil. His boundless energy helped to fire up our efforts and drive us over the finishing line.

“Over the decades, Brian has covered the many miles of road around Munster and he leaves a great political legacy. I wish him all the best as he moves onto the next stage of his life,” concluded Moynihan.