The Leader of Plaid Cymru, Adam Price MS, has written to the First Minister Mark Drakeford calling for a public debate between the leaders of the major parties in Wales on coronavirus.
He said that the pandemic had allowed less time for scrutiny of the Welsh Government and that the time before a predicted second wave should be set aside to discuss Wales’ response.
Adam Price’s offer has already been rebuffed by some on social media with Labour’s Hefin David, the MS for Plaid Cymru’s target seat of Caerphilly, arguing that the Welsh parliament allowed time for scrutiny.
“The Senedd is the place for scrutiny,” he said. “Party leaders have ample time (some backbenchers feel too much at their expense) during parliamentary sessions. Now is not the time for an election campaign.”
Adam Price said that decisions had to be made by the government at short notice to deal with the pandemic, and there had been less scope for scrutiny as a result.
“With experts predicting a second wave of the virus, this is the opportunity for us to be learning lessons to ensure we are in a more resilient position than the one we were in at the start of the pandemic,” he said in his letter to Mark Drakeford.
“Sharing ideas – challenging and embracing them – is an integral part of our democracy as we strive to ensure that the people of Wales are best represented.
“In that spirit, I believe that now is the time for a public debate between the leaders of the major parties in Wales. The people of Wales would benefit from a mature and measured debate, away from the heat of the 2021 election campaign.
“I trust that you will agree that holding such a debate before the autumn is a constructive offer and I look forward to your response.”