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New First Minister must ‘get things moving’, David TC Davies tells Welsh Tories

23 Feb 2024 5 minute read
David TC Davies

Martin Shipton

Welsh Secretary David TC Davies has written a letter to both First Minister candidates, demanding they “reset Labour’s agenda” to “get Wales moving”.

In his speech at the Welsh Conservative conference in Llandudno – the last before the general election later this year – the Monmouth MP held up an identical letter that he has sent to both Vaughan Gething and Jeremy Miles, in which he calls on both candidates to prioritise fixing the NHS, education, farming and transport – all areas that are devolved.

He argued that even more money would be available to the Labour Welsh Government, if the candidates abandoned their “expensive vanity projects”, including creating more Members of the Senedd.

The letter that Mr Davies sent reads: “At present, Wales suffers from the worst waiting lists in the whole of the UK, with roughly 25,000 people stuck on a waiting list for two years or more. Yet health boards are now being forced to make tens of millions in cuts.

“The enormous potential of the Welsh economy is continually being stifled. Wales-based companies face some of the highest business rates in the country[sic], with Welsh workers taking home the worst pay packet.

“Welsh schools also finished bottom of all the UK nations in the 2023 PISA rankings. I am sure that you will agree with me that our children deserve far better than this.

“Addressing these significant devolved issues should be amongst your top priorities as First Minister, as well as ditching the many damaging flagship policies of your predecessor.

“Economically, reversing the 20mph default speed limits would undo, according to your government’s own analysis, over £4bn in damages, and unblocking the ban on any new roads being built would provide better infrastructure for businesses to flourish.

“Wales also desperately needs more nurses, teachers and doctors, not more Senedd Members – especially when such a move would cost the taxpayer over £100m. It is crucial that you urgently reset the agenda to get Wales moving.”

“It is crucial that you urgently reset the agenda to get Wales moving.”

Senedd

An assessment by the Senedd says that in the first year of operation an expanded Senedd with 96 Members could cost from £14.8m to £17.7m, before falling to between £13.9m and £16.8m in 2027/28.In 2030/31, that could rise to at least £16.3m and as much as £19.5m, before falling again the next year to between £14.8m-£18.05m.

In his speech Mr Davies added:: “Wales is experiencing a crisis, where our economy is on its knees and we have the worst waiting lists in the whole of the UK.

“Both Vaughan Gething and Jeremy Miles have been at the Welsh Government helm for the entirety of Mark Drakeford’s term. Not once did either candidate voice their concerns at the disastrous policies being implemented, from forcing health boards to make tens of millions in cuts to then spend over £100m on creating more Senedd Members, or introducing a ban on any new roads being built or potentially forcing farmers to forfeit their land for tree planting.

“That is why I have written an identical letter to both candidates because they are two peas in a pod. But it’s high time that both commit to putting Wales’ interests first.”

20mph

Meanwhile Labour has accused senior Tories of lining up to criticise Welsh Labour’s 20mph default policy while many have supported it themselves.

Quoting statements made in the past by Conservative politicians, a Labour source said their hypocrisy was exposed as the Welsh Conservative Conference opened. A press release from Labour listed five instances when Tory politicians backed a 20mph limit:

* Welsh Secretary David Davies has discussed why he backs a 20 mph zone in his Monmouth constituency (South Wales Argus, 2022).

* Welsh Conservative Senedd leader Andrew RT Davies posed with campaigners holding a sign saying “20’s plenty where people live” (Twitter, 2018).

* The Chancellor Jeremy Hunt joined Godalming road safety protesters to pledge his support for their 20’s Plenty campaign. He said that “Dropping your speed by merely 10 mph can make all the difference in preventing potentially fatal accidents, particularly with children.” (Surrey Live, 2013).

* Conservative-run North Yorkshire council, in the Prime Minister’s own seat, is introducing “the most significant 20mph zone the council has ever introduced” as they believe they are “safer”. (i newspaper, 2023).

* Justice Secretary Alex Chalk – the Cheltenham MP and Justice Secretary – said that 20mph limits in urban areas would help encourage more cycling at a Cycling UK event. (Twitter, 2016).

The Labour source said: “These Tories have decided to opt for political opportunism instead of principle. This dubious political amnesia isn’t fooling anyone. Opposing the policy so they can carp from the sidelines won’t convince people they are on their side. These Tories should have the courage of their convictions and tell people what they really believe in.”


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Richard Davies
Richard Davies
1 month ago

The only response the “turn coat” deserves is póg mo thóin!

Gareth
Gareth
1 month ago

He is in no position to ” demand” anything from any member of the Senedd. It is his party that determines the amount of money the Senedd gets to run all devolved matters, and the fact that in recent byelections in England, they have lost safe seats with majorities of 20 and 25 thousand given up, tells you how they have run things into the ground over the border. While he is also happy to publicly deny us HS2 cash, it just shows where his loyalty is, and it’s not with his constituents.

Y Cymro
Y Cymro
1 month ago

Said the man who held Wales back when it wanted to move forward. Bit of advice David. Anyone who needs moving is you when voters of Monmouth finally oust you from office later this year. Good riddance!

As alleged Welsh Secretary you have been a disaster in office . A thorn in Wales side. Voters deserve better. We need a politician who champions Wales & Welsh devolution, who fights for our interests not against in cabinet rather than their own twisted narrowminded centrist jam and Jerusalem ideology that’s damaged and destroyed.

#YesCymru 🏴󠁧󠁢󠁷󠁬󠁳󠁿 #PlaidCymru 🏴󠁧󠁢󠁷󠁬󠁳󠁿 #Ymlaen 🏴󠁧󠁢󠁷󠁬󠁳󠁿 #ToxicTory ☣️🇬🇧#DavidTCDavies☣️🇬🇧

Last edited 1 month ago by Y Cymro
Jeff
Jeff
1 month ago

I can only see any conservative party get together before this GE akin to Nuremberg rallies. They dont drop the usual suspects in their party then they those awful people.

Annibendod
Annibendod
1 month ago

Westminster has its knee on Wales’ neck. Get off and we’ll get going. In fact, “Go Forth” or words to that effect are exactly what should be said to DTCD every time he opens his mouth.

karl
karl
1 month ago

The man who bleeds us dry. The Brexit criminal who should serve time for his traitous ways. David is evil, he hates our country and human life

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