FORMER presidential candidate Sean Gallagher has announced that he will seek to run again.
Submissions were lodged to 10 local authorities overnight seeking a nomination, following weeks of speculation as to whether or not Mr Gallagher would run for a second time.
In a statement released this morning, he said that Irish people have an “opportunity to redefine the role of president in the context of a changing society, while cherishing all that is unique about Ireland”.
It is reported that Gallagher has already held discussions with a number of councillors who have already vowed to support him.
The news comes a day after Minister Eoghan Murphy confirmed the polling date as Friday 26 October.
Gallagher joins Gavin Duffy from The Apprentice, activist Kevin Sharkey, independent Senator Joan Freeman, and journalist Gemma O’Doherty in the race for the presidency.
The businessman lost out to Michael D Higgins in 2011 after the current president secured 39.6% of first preference votes to Gallagher’s 28.5%.
Gallagher has said he will give a “fresh approach” to a constantly changing Ireland and added: “If I am honoured to be nominated as a candidate I will set out a clear and compelling vision for the people of Ireland to assess in the context of an engaging and energetic Presidential election campaign.”
He must now win the backing of 20 members of the Dáil and Seanad, or four full local authorities, in order to get on the ballot.
Gallagher said that motions have been submitted in ten separate local authorities calling for his nomination.