Enda Kenny finally reveals whether he will run to be Ireland’s President against Michael D Higgins
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Enda Kenny finally reveals whether he will run to be Ireland’s President against Michael D Higgins

FORMER Taoiseach Enda Kenny has finally responded to rumours that he will run for the Irish Presidency against Michael D Higgins.

The ex-Irish PM was in Galway on Monday to accept an honorary doctorate from the National University of Ireland.

Mr Kenny was a former student at NUI Galway before he qualified as a national school teacher at St Patrick’s College of Education in Dublin.

When asked if he was interested in swapping his recent retirement for the halls of Áras an Uachtaráin, the Mayo native certainly made his thoughts on the matter clear.

Speaking about the Presidency, Kenny told The Irish Times: “I have already made the position very clear.

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“Obviously the presidential election is due next year," he said before leaving a long, tension-building pause.

“I have no interest in contesting the presidency for Áras an Uachtaráin,” he added.

“I believe that Michael D Higgins, as Uachtarán na hÉireann, is doing a superb job there and I wish him every success with the decision he must make in due course."

When asked if Mr Higgins should run for a second term, Kenny said the decision was entirely up to the President.

Former Fine Gael leader Mr Kenny was awarded his doctorate to honour his ‘distinguished contribution to the field of politics and for his contribution to society when he was Taoiseach’ by NUI Galway.

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He was the second former Taoiseach to pick up the accolade this year – after Brian Cowen was awarded a similar honour in July.