GERRY Adams was officially confirmed as his Sinn Féin's representative in the next General Election in this constituency at the party's convention in the Fairways Hotel on Monday night.
The party president was proposed by Cllr Edel Corrigan, who described him as a man who had "shown great courage and leadership throughout his lifetime" and seconded by Cllr Pearse McGeough who described him as a man who "worked all his adult life for freedom, justice and peace."
Mr Adams, the only nominee on the night, was then confirmed as Deputy Arthur Morgan's successor as Louth's Sinn Fin candidate by a unanimous show of hands, which was followed by a standing ovation and rapturous applause.
Speaking to party members following the confirmation of his candidacy in this constituency, Mr Adams said it was a "huge privilage" to be representing the party in the Louth/East Meath area.
He said it was a "very, very important" night and praised Arthur Morgan, who will step down at the next election, for his contribution to the party – saying that the Omeath man had "pioneered" the party's economic policy.
He also thanked Toms and Olive Sharkey for their support and Edel Corrigan and Pearse McGeough for proposing and seconding his nomination.
He said those people and all the party's other members and public representatives would be playing a big part in his forthcoming election campaign.
"You haven't decided to send me out on my own. We're a team and you've decided to let me join your team tonight but now we've big things to do.
"Our ambitions go way beyond the other parties. We're going to be the generation that will be able to live in a united, free Ireland."
Mr Adams also encouraged voters to see Sinn Fin as a true alternative to the established parties.
"Imagine that private banks get into huge difficulty out of greed and our government bails them out. If you think this Budget was bad then think again because they're going to do the same in the next Budget and the next Budget and the next Budget.
"You might say, well they won't be there, but Fine Gael have signed up for the same budget."
Quoting lyrics from the Luke Kelly song, "For What Died The Sons Of Roisin?", Mr Adams said "we owe our allegiance to Ireland and the people of Ireland."
He said: "In the next couple of months we will fight an election. It's our job now to tell everyone who we are. This is our seat and it's about looking for a new Ireland and that starts tonight.
"We're about challenging the status quo and we're about joining with anyone who has the same ideals.
"2011 is our year," he said before being given a second standing ovation and huge applause.