Support our Nation today - please donate here

Plaid Cymru calls for powers over justice and policing to be fully devolved to Wales

21 Jun 2023 2 minute read
Police officer

Plaid Cymru has reiterated called for powers over justice and policing to be fully devolved to Wales ahead of a Senedd debate today (21 June).

The party wants measures to be introduced to make Welsh police forces fully accountable to the Senedd and for a distinct Welsh legal system to be established.

Both Scotland and Northern Ireland have full law-making powers over justice and policing, whilst in Wales, this is reserved to Westminster.

Plaid Cymru’s new leader, Rhun ap Iorwerth, says this makes Wales an “anomaly”, and a matter that Welsh Government must take steps to “correct at once.”

While the government is expected to back the statement that “there is no rational basis” for Wales to be an outlier, they have put in an amendment that deletes the requirement for them to take immediate action to correct this anomaly.


“Wales is an outlier when it comes to justice and policing, being the only devolved nation without control over criminal justice matters. But while the Labour Government is happy to acknowledge this anomaly, they are not showing any urgency in resolving it”, Mr ap Iorwerth said.

“Inequality is built into the heart of our justice system, and with public confidence in the police force dented, and crime in Wales at an all-time high, it’s vital that we give ourselves the best opportunity to tackle these issues head on.

“While Labour in Wales say that they agree policing and justice should be devolved, thanks to the work of my colleague Lord Wigley, we hear that no formal request has been made by Welsh Government. Their lack of decisive action is speaking louder than their words.

“Set against conflicting narrative from their counterparts in UK Labour, who have actively called for policing to ‘stay’ in Westminster – that’s why Plaid Cymru has taken this debate to the Senedd today.

“We’re calling on Welsh Government to formally request full powers over justice and policing, because it’s the only way we can truly tackle the injustices in the current system, and a fully devolved criminal justice system can be a vital step along the road to independence.”

Support our Nation today

For the price of a cup of coffee a month you can help us create an independent, not-for-profit, national news service for the people of Wales, by the people of Wales.

Notify of
Newest Most Voted
Inline Feedbacks
View all comments
10 months ago

Hopefully we can get a more substantive response from Welsh Labour than Carolyn Harris’ “I just wouldn’t” this time around.

10 months ago
Reply to  Cymro

That counts as a comprehensive response from Harris.

Y Cymro
Y Cymro
10 months ago

Well done Plaid Cymru. As usual they are the only political party in Wales and at Westminster fighting for our national rights. And anyone who would deny only Wales the right to the devolution of policing & criminal justice are seriously unhinged and need to take a long hard look in the mirror. And I know the English Conservatives and some questionable Welsh Labour MPs have made it known that they would prefer England, yes England, to control our policing & justice system, even though in 2026 will have a 96 member Senedd Cymru legislature. Ask yourselves this. Why are… Read more »

Last edited 10 months ago by Y Cymro
Bachgen o Lerpwl
10 months ago
Reply to  Y Cymro

Totally agree and all Welsh police officers should able to hold a conversation in Welsh.

Steve Woods
Steve Woods
10 months ago

All devolved nations should have equal powers; and those powers – including the power to secede – should be constitutionally guaranteed.

The fact they are not just shows what a pig’s breakfast devolution has been to date.

Our Supporters

All information provided to Nation.Cymru will be handled sensitively and within the boundaries of the Data Protection Act 2018.