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Former Labour council leader ‘cow’ comments led to ‘more attacks’, says Plaid Cymru MS

10 Mar 2021 3 minutes Read
Bethan Sayed. Picture by the National Assembly (CC BY 2.0)

Being described as a “cow” by the a former Labour council leader has led to “more” attacks against her, according to a Plaid Cymru MS.

Councillor Rob Jones, who used to lead Neath Port Talbot Council, resigned after a recording emerged of him making the remarks against Bethan Sayed at a meeting in 2019.

Sayed said that she doesn’t “deserve this”, that she “didn’t ask for any of it”, and that she is “absolutely sick of it all”.

The Labour councillor said the recording was edited to make it look worse than it was, and that his comments “does not reflect my values”.

He has left his role as leader of the council and asked the public services ombudsman to investigate.

A voice is heard on the recording saying: “Bethan Sayed…the cow that she is…”.

Bethan Sayed, who is standing down at the upcoming Senedd election, said: “It’s not about whether the word cow is strong as an attack or not. But an attack on me by a Leader of a Council has now led to more such attacks against me. I really don’t deserve this. I didn’t ask for any of it.

“I have a matter of weeks left as an MS before I stand down and this is what I have to put up with.

“Absolutely sick of it all. For the record. My gut was right. Its toxic and unwelcoming and yes, I AM DONE.”

Plaid Cymru leader Adam Price had earlier called on the First Minister Mark Drakeford to investigate the recording saying that it included “inappropriate and misogynistic” language about a Senedd member.

‘Despicable’ 

Following the emergence of the recording Bethan Sayed who was named in it, said she found it to be “despicable”.

In response to being challenged by Adam Price on the matter, Mark Drakeford said: “There’s no place for misogyny in any part of Welsh life or in any political party. I remember that Mr Price himself launched an inquiry into misogyny in Plaid Cymru in June or July of 2019.

“Trying to deduce a generalised smear from one incident to what happens right across Wales, does not seem to me to be a sensible or a proportionate way of responding to that.

“I was concerned to read what Councillor Jones had said and I’m sure he has done the right thing in stepping aside form the leadership of Neath Port Talbot council while those remarks are properly investigated by the monitoring officer and by the Ombudsman here in Wales.

“It’s why he has been suspended from his membership of the Labour Party while those inquiries can be completed. I think it would be sensible for anyone to await the outcome of those inquiries before drawing conclusions about what should happen next.”

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