Abolish blast ‘failure payments’ to former MS – without noting their own members were among them
Abolish the Assembly have blasted “failure payments” to Senedd Members who were not successfully re-elected – without noting that two of their own Senedd Members were among them.
The party complained that that candidates that were “unsuccessfully re-elected” received nearly £400,000 in total in resettlement grants.
They did not however mention that some of the unsuccessful candidates benefitting from the payouts had represented Abolish the Assembly during the previous Senedd term.
Mark Reckless, who joined Abolish the Assembly in 2020, stood for the party in Monmouth and South Wales East at the Senedd election. He received over £30,000 in resettlement grants, according to an FOI request by WalesOnline.
Gareth Bennett was another Abolish the Assembly MS, although he eventually stood as an independent in Cynon Valley, coming last. He also received over £30,000 in resettlement grants.
Despite this, Abolish the Assembly put a post on their Facebook page blasting the practice, saying that it showed the Senedd to be a “gravy train”.
“I am sure that the many people who have lost their jobs in Wales due to the Pandemic, or those who struggle to get a job, would appreciate any payment let alone one so large,” they said.
“If this does not show us that the Assembly/Senedd is nothing but a gravy train, nothing will.”
There were 13 MSs who received payouts after the election. Those who chose not to stand again do not receive the payment. The amounts are determined by the independent Remuneration Board.
Despite being included in the main BBC debate on the basis of promising polling numbers, Abolish the Assembly failed to see a single member elected to the Senedd in May.
Abolish the Assembly’s Facebook page also included “exciting news” that they were reducing the number of social media pages from seven to two, and also a “flash sale” on Abolish merchandise.