Plaid criticise Tory Police Crime Commissioner candidate over ‘inaccurate statements’
Plaid Cymru have criticised the Conservative Police Crime Commissioner candidate in the North Wales region over what they say are “inaccurate statements”.
Pat Astbury, who is standing for North Wales PCC, incorrectly described herself as a “local councillor” on a piece of campaign literature, when in fact she is a former one.
In an apology on her Facebook page, she insisted that there was “no intent to deceive whatsoever”.
She has previously been rebuked by North Wales Regional Returning Officer Colin Everett for another electoral rule break.
The candidate incorrectly described herself as the Police and Crime Commissioner in a video on her Facebook page when the election has yet to take place.
Plaid Cymru’s Westminster leader and MP for Dwyfor Meirionnydd, Liz Saville Roberts, said today that the north needed a PCC who acts with “honesty and integrity”.
“Police and Crime Commissioners have a duty to lead by example with honesty and integrity. It is regrettable that the Conservatives’ casual relationship with the truth seen by Boris Johnson seems to extend to their PCC candidates too,” she said.
“The people of north Wales deserve a Police and Crime Commissioner who will treat the position with the seriousness needed, not someone who spin and distort facts for political gain.”
Speaking to the Local Democracy Reporting Service LDRS, Mrs Astbury however said that “Colin Everett said he was drawing a line under the first complaint and he was doing the same under this one too.”
A spokeswoman for the Welsh Conservatives, said: “Pat made a genuine error, for which she has apologised.”
A spokesman for the Police Area Returning Officer for North Wales, Colin Everett, said the matter was now “closed”.
The campaign to find the next PCC is getting underway in earnest as all the candidates fight for the vacant role left by Arfon Jones, who announced he was stepping down earlier this year.
Plaid Cymru urhed voters to vote for Plaid’s nominee as Arfon Jones’ successor, Ann Griffith.
“She has the values needed for the position, given her four years’ experience working as deputy PCC and her background as a registered social worker,” Liz Saville Roberts said.
“From working extensively with the police across every county in the north on issues like child protection, safeguarding older people and people with mental health problem – she understands more than anyone the need for accountability and integrity within the police.”