Boris Johnson is the “greatest recruiting agent independence ever had” according to the leader of Plaid Cymru Adam Price.
Mr Price will make the claim as he takes to the virtual stage to address the SNP’s 86th Annual National Conference today, where he also takes aim at the “worst excesses of Westminster rule”.
He said this includes “dubious PPE contracts, a calamitous testing regime, and a Tory ‘chumocracy’ which is growing by the day.”
According to a recent opinion poll by YouGov support for independence has surged to its highest ever recorded level of 33 per cent, up from 22 per cent in December. Membership of the grassroots pro-independence group YesCymru has also surged to over 15,000, and that is up from 2,500 at the start of the year.
One YouGov poll has also suggested that 72 per cent of the people of Wales trust the Senedd more than Westminster to look after its interests.
Mr Price is keen to “cement and enhance” the relationship between Wales and Scotland, and, if he becomes First Minister of Wales, he has promised a “Celtic Summit” in summer 2021.
There he says he will map out how to turn “independence and mutual co-operation” into the “new normal.”
In his speech, Mr Price also says that his “first official phone call as the first pro-independence First Minister of Wales” would be to the First Minister of Scotland, Nicole Sturgeon.
He says: “We have a blueprint for our countries not just to be equal nations alongside all others, but nations of equals.” With a nod to some 2020 essentials, Mr Price says he knows “we can’t ‘Zoom’ our way towards independence without building ‘Teams’ to make it work.”
In the speech he seeks to draw a stark contrast between “Westminster rule”, and how he would govern Wales.
He adds: “Over the coming months Plaid Cymru will be making the case that changing Wales for good will only come about through a change of Government.
“Let no one be in any doubt that I will lead a team and a party clear in its aims, united in its goal, committed to holding and winning an independence referendum as soon as we can.
“It is this common cause which is the bedrock of the bond between the SNP and Plaid Cymru, and it’s my dream to see these two nations come together all under one banner, in a Celtic Summit to map out our common aims and purpose as independence and mutual co-operation becomes the new normal.
“Which is why my first official phone call as the first pro-independence First Minister of Wales next May will be to Nicola Sturgeon.
“The pandemic has exposed the worst excesses of Westminster rule: Dubious PPE contracts, a calamitous testing regime, and a Tory ‘chumocracy’ which is growing by the day. In Wales they stole our tests, in Scotland, too, they denied furlough, and now they’re aiming fire at devolution itself.
“The Chancellor’s reward for the sacrifice and struggle of public sector workers is the poison pill of a public pay freeze. Where they build back bitter, we have a blueprint for our countries not just to be equal nations alongside all others, but nations of equals, fair and free, where freedom is the key to the flourishing of all.”