Former Plaid Cymru leader Ieuan Wyn Jones throws weight behind Rhun ap Iorwerth

Ieuan Wyn Jones. Picture: National Assembly. (CC BY 2.0)

Former Plaid Cymru leader Ieuan Wyn Jones has thrown his weight behind Rhun ap Iorwerth in the leadership race.

The former Anglesey MP and AM said that Plaid Cymru needed a leader who understood and realised “the significance of Brexit and the serious harm that will happen to the economy and standard of living in Wales if we leave the European Union”.

“With the possibility of leaving the EU without an agreement becoming increasingly likely, and the fact that those who argued in favour of leaving in the first place have misled people about the effects of leaving, it is only by demanding a new referendum that allows the possibility of remaining a member that we can save the situation,” he said.

“The debate in favour of independence makes much more sense as a point of view within the European Union and is therefore integral to all.

“How would an independent Wales thrive outside the EU given the dependence on England that is so powerful as an economy? Imagine what would happen to Ireland outside the EU after Brexit?

“Nobody is foolish enough to see that as a good result. If the leader of Plaid Cymru does not lead the way in demanding another referendum on our relationship with Europe, he or she would be doing a great disservice to the party, but more significantly to Wales.

“Due to his consistent and unyielding position on the relationship between Wales and Europe, Rhun deserves our support.”

‘Vision’

He said that Plaid Cymru also needed to pick a leader who would make an effective next First Minister of Wales.

“The first step would be to ensure that the Assembly group works as a team, something that we are not sure that has happened recently,” he said.

“I think that Rhun has the skills to ensure that the group works closely together, with a series of robust policies to present a clear, ambitious and credible programme to the electorate.

“He has the vision and communication skills needed to succeed and to make sure that that exciting vision reaches and persuades a new audience of people who have not supported the party before.”

Rhun ap Iorwerth’s campaign has also published a video laying out his vision for Wales:

‘Exciting’

Earlier this week, Siân Gwenllian announced her support of Adam Price in the election to be the new leader of Plaid Cymru.

The Arfon AM announced her support during an interview on Radio Cymru’s Post Cyntaf programme on Tuesday.

“Politics moves quickly from one period to the next. This is Adam’s moment,” Siân Gwenllian said. “He is the one to lead Plaid Cymru as Wales faces a new, challenging and exciting era.

“Adam has an ambitious vision; he’s a strategic thinker; he has sound solutions. I support Adam because Plaid and Wales needs a leader with a plan and a leader who can inspire others to help to deliver that plan. I look forward to working with him, for Wales.”

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