AONTÚ have selected candidate Gerard Herdman to contest the Black Mountain DEA in West Belfast for this year’s upcoming Belfast City Council election.

Mr Herdman, who is a native of West Belfast and works in the plumbing trade, said he would campaign on the issues of healthcare, housing and tackling the cost of living crisis. He also said he would challenge the British government’s Legacy Bill which is due to become law in the coming weeks.

Promising a campaign on ‘bread and butter’ issues he said after his selection: “I have lived in West Belfast my whole life and love this community. I am ready to work hard to improve the lives of everyone in our community and do the work the Stormont parties have neglected.

“There is a complete lack of adequate health care services in our community, and accessing basic services such as GPs is becoming extremely difficult. Belfast has suffered from years of political mismanagement. As a result, we're seeing the biggest cost of living crisis and housing crisis in living memory. 

“If elected, I will fight on the bread and butter issues. I will push too for increased funding for housing in West Belfast and to have developers legally mandated to consider vulnerable groups such as the homeless.”

In last year's Assembly election Gerard Herdman received 1,753 first preference votes.