Fianna Fáil Leader Micheál Martin TD has expressed his sympathy following the death of former Ceann Comhairle and Labour TD Séamus Pattison.

Deputy Martin said, “Séamus was a distinguished public representative who diligently represented the people of Carlow – Kilkenny for 46 years. He also served the country at a national level through his time as Minister of State for Social Welfare from 1983 to 1987. Séamus also represented Ireland at the European Parliament during his tenure as MEP from 1981 to 1983.

“Séamus will be widely remembered from his time as Ceann Comhairle of Dáil Éireann from 1997 to 2002, and Leas Ceann Comhairle from 2002 until his retirement from politics in 2007. He was a gentleman who commanded the respect of all sides of the house. He was fair and impartial and ensured that all TD’s got a fair hearing when he sat in the chair.

“As Father of the Dáil he was always on hand to offer advice and support to TD’s and Senators when needed. I remember many conversations that I had with him down through the years, and one thing which always struck me was his strong sense of social duty. He was a passionate man who espoused the values of the Labour movement throughout his long career.

“On my own behalf and on behalf of the entire Fianna Fáil family I would like to offer my condolences to his family.

“Ar dheis Dé go raibh a anam.”