Call for Wales’ Greens to hold second vote on independence from English party
The Welsh Green party should take another vote on independence from the English Green Party now that they support independence for Wales, a member has said.
Writing on the party media platform Bright Green, Welshman in London Matt Townsend calls for Wales’ Greens to follow the Scottish Greens and go it alone.
The Scottish Greens have been independent since 1990 and have just gone into government for the first time alongside the SNP at Holyrood.
The Welsh Green Party voted against seceding from the England and Wales party in 2018. However, in October 2020 the party then decided to back Welsh independence.
Matt Townsend said that the vote in 2018 had “left an inconsistency” that while Scotland and Northern Ireland have independent Green parties “with their own identities and policies, England and Wales remain joined as one party, headquartered in London”.
“This has left Wales as one of very few nations around the world to not have its own Green Party,” he added.
“Every nation should have its own Green Party. It feels extremely uncomfortable, and contrary to the spirit of our values about devolution, that Welsh members do not have complete control over the destiny of their own party.
“There will always be opposition from within the party. Some will claim that the English party is subsiding Wales. But, if this is true and is being used as a way to retain control over Wales. That is highly inappropriate.”
Matt Townsend said that since the 2018 vote against becoming independent of the English Green Party, “much has changed”.
“Firstly, there has been a growing movement towards Welsh national independence, which the Greens have declared their support for,” he said.
“Secondly, Wales had a national election in 2021, and once again Greens failed to gain any seats.
“Recently we have watched the formation of a co-operation deal which has seen the Greens enter parliament in Scotland. This momentous event puts Greens into a national government for the first time anywhere in the UK.
“This provides the inspiration needed for a bold leap to create the right conditions for a breakthrough in Wales.”
Matt Townsend said that while becoming independent wasn’t the sole reason for the Greens’ success in Scotland, it had played a big part.
“Without it, the party would not have gone through the period of party building, and necessary bumps along the road,” he said.
“This has resulted in the Scottish Greens having their own distinctive party identity and respect from a growing number of voters within Scotland – even those loyal to other parties who will continue to receive their constituency vote.
“The identity and political priorities formed by the Scottish Greens has been crucial to their success – and this is what the Wales Greens need to start to build. This is unlikely to happen without independence.”