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‘Gutter politics’: Labour MP criticised for ‘claiming credit’ for free school meals

29 Nov 2021 3 minutes Read
Nia Griffith MP. UK Parliament (CC 3.0)

A Labour MP has been accused of claiming credit for the introduction of free school meals in Wales.

Nia Griffith, who represents Llanelli, was responding to the news that it will be introduced as part of a wide-ranging cooperation agreement between Plaid Cymru and the Welsh Government.

She was told to leave the “gutter politics” in Westminster by Plaid Cymru Senedd member Mabon ap Gwynfor.

The Westminster politician, who is Shadow Secretary of State for Wales, had suggested that Plaid Cymru is “supporting” the First Minister Mark Drakeford and “our excellent progressive” Welsh Labour “policies” which she said included “extending free school meal provision”.

It was pointed out to her that Labour has previously voted down attempts in the Senedd by Plaid Cymru to introduce free school meals. Introducing free school meals was a part of Plaid Cymru’s Senedd election manifesto.

In response to Nia Griffith, Plaid Cymru Deputy Leader, Rhun ap Iorwerth said: “Now then, Nia. Let’s talk about the spirit of this agreement. Cooperating includes compromise.

“Labour voted repeatedly against even extending free school dinners a bit. Plaid now accept you can share in the credit of implementing our policy. Please don’t claim it as your own.”

In response to Rhun ap Iorwerth, former Welsh Government minister, Alun Davies said: “I suspect that both parties will need to learn this lesson over the coming period. Some generosity of spirit and goodwill will help. I’m just glad that children will be fed!”

Adam Johannes said: “Well done Nia! Your tireless public campaigning as a Labour MP for universal free school meals over last year is well documented.

“Labour skillfully cornered Plaid into supporting free school meals for all primary school kids by voting it down 3 times in the Senedd. Genius.”

‘Why not be humble’ 

Alex Tiffin said: “Welsh Labour voted down extending Free School Meals twice before. Why not be humble and accept @Plaid_Cymru policies are progressive and good, instead of trying to claim them aa (sic) Labour’s.”

Plaid Cymru MS Mabon ap Gwynfor replied: “@NiaGriffithMP please point to which page in Labour’s manifesto had extending the free school meal provision, or indeed the programme for government?

“This is meant to be grown up, different politics. You can leave the gutter politics in Westminster.”

Meirion Thomas said: “Nothing new with Labour they are just jumping on the bandwagon of Plaid lost count how many times Labour voted against this free school meals.”

Jack Henry said: “Cooperation (n): the action or process of working together to the same end.

“Welsh Labour voted repeatedly against even extending free school dinners in the Senedd. @Plaid_Cymru now accept you can share the credit of implementing their policy. Plaigarism isn’t a good look Nia.”

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Keith Parry
Keith Parry
1 month ago

The big bad Labour Party saw little Plaid Cymru coming and gobbled them all up.

Tim
Tim
1 month ago

Nia Griffiths always seems to believe sincerely what is coming out of her mouth at the moment. Factual accuracy has never been a priority for her.

hdavies15
hdavies15
1 month ago
Reply to  Tim

Cut her some slack. She’s been living in a parallel universe filled with Labour deceit most of her silly life and it’s a bit late to change now.

Iain Murcaidh Seion
Iain Murcaidh Seion
1 month ago
Reply to  hdavies15

Ahhh! You’re the one who said the English schoolchildren should be shot in cages by Welsh farmers…how are you?

Yma o hyd, Ifan.

GW Atkinson
GW Atkinson
1 month ago

English labour are no different to the tories. This is why we need out of wastemonster

Ex Plaid member
Ex Plaid member
1 month ago

It is right that free primary meals will only come into effect in 3 years time and then only if there is sufficient spare money? England has this in 2013.

Cai Wogan Jones
Cai Wogan Jones
1 month ago

I get the distinct impression that there are some in Welsh Labour and Plaid who are quietly hostile to the cooperation agreement — and bent on sabotaging it through their inane tribal comments.

Call them out when they make these comments, whichever their party!

Paul
Paul
1 month ago

Seem to remember it was the Lib Dems and Labour who introduced free school meals and now Plaid and Labour are expanding it to all primary years.

Y Cymro
Y Cymro
1 month ago

Looks as if Wales Labour MP Nia Griffith has taken a leaf out of the English Tories book it seems. Where the English Tories claimed credit for the Welsh Government Covid vaccine rollout, she & they now do the similar with free schools meals even though Welsh Labour voted down Plaid’s policy previously in the Senedd. Saying that, Labour have form. They think they invented the NHS in 1948, where in reality took the idea from the Tredegar Workmen’s Medical Aid Society founders, whose health care system they used to create the NHS. Sadder still, although they used their idea,… Read more »

Last edited 1 month ago by Y Cymro
Iain Murcaidh Seoin
Iain Murcaidh Seoin
1 month ago
Reply to  Y Cymro

English Tories claimed credit for the Welsh Government Covid vaccine rollout…

Sais vaccine, see.

j humphrys
j humphrys
1 month ago

Blimey, thought it was my idea, nicked from the Finns! So, let me add, that these meals should be a civilised affair, in “buffet” -style, where the kids serve themselves and learn to eat in a civilised fashion. It is part of our society moving to a new Cymru?
And don’t forget the pre-schoolers breakfast. A great aid for busy Moms.
Companies sponsoring these schemes should be rewarded in some fashion.

Last edited 1 month ago by j humphrys
Grayham Jones
1 month ago

The Labour Party in wales are letting wales down the Labour Party have got to stop being little Englanders and and be proud to be welsh start fighting for your children and grandchildren future in wales 🏴󠁧󠁢󠁷󠁬󠁳󠁿 it’s time for a new wales 🏴󠁧󠁢󠁷󠁬󠁳󠁿

Cat
Cat
1 month ago

There are stupid comments coming from all sides re this agreement. I know its madness in this day and age, but why don’t we just embrace a progressive agenda and this agreement and see how it goes? We need to set an example to Westminster and the people of Wales as to what can be achieved. We have quite enough enemies to face in the Internal Markets Bill.

Last edited 1 month ago by Cat
Glen
Glen
1 month ago

Hey Nation if you are going to delete comments, at least have the decency to give a reason.
Or is being critical of Plaid not allowed on this site.

mickey6324
mickey6324
1 month ago

o dear is the honeymoon over so soon ha ha

Stephen Owen
Stephen Owen
1 month ago

I wrote to Nia Griffith a few months ago about an issue, never got a reply. I won’t waste my time in the future. I guess now that there is no election for a while she can relax and ignore us.

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