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Backbencher replaces sacked junior minister Hannah Blythyn

17 May 2024 4 minute read
Sarah Murphy MS – Image Senedd Cymru

Emily Price

Labour backbencher Sarah Murphy has replaced sacked junior minister Hannah Blythyn as Minister for Social Partnership.

In a shock announcement on Thursday (May 16), First Minister Vaughan Gething said he had removed Ms Blythyn from his Cabinet because she had leaked information to the media.

The Delyn MS denied the allegation saying, “I’ve never leaked anything”.

The Chair of the Unison Wales political committee, Dan Beard who supported Mr Gething during his election campaign said he felt Ms Blythyn had been treated “harshly”.

In a post on X, he said: “Still have big reservations on how Hannah was dismissed who has been treated harshly in my view but Sarah is also a dedicated trade unionist and a friend who will do justice to this role.”


Announcing the new appointment on Friday (May 17), the First Minister said: “I am pleased to announce the appointment of Sarah Murphy as Minister for Social Partnership.

“Sarah will take forward our ongoing work with our valued social partners as well as providing leadership for our creative, hospitality, tourism and retail sectors.

“I warmly welcome Sarah to my talented and ambitious Cabinet team.”

During Mr Gething’s campaign to become Welsh Labour Leader, Ms Murphy was a supporter of his opponent, Jeremy Miles.

Her new portfolio will include implementation of the Social Partnership and Public Procurement Act and Social Partnership Council, overseeing matters relating to the living wage, fair work, tourism, the hospitality and retail sectors in Wales and the creative sector.

Andrew RT Davies MS, Leader of the Welsh Conservatives said the Welsh Government remains fractured.

He said: “I’d like to welcome Sarah Murphy to the role.Unfortunately, this Labour Welsh Government remains completely fractured and unable to govern because of the First Minister’s activities before and since taking the top job.

“The First Minister must urgently provide clarity on the litany of issues that are plaguing his leadership so we can move on and focus on improving Wales’ public services.”


The appointment comes following weeks of controversies for the new First Minister who has been embroiled in several scandals relating to donations to his election campaign and messages he deleted in a ministerial group chat during the Covid-19 pandemic.

On May 7, Nation.Cymru exclusively revealed a previously undisclosed message from an iMessage group chat in which Mr Gething told ministers he was deleting messages because, “They can be captured in an FOI [freedom of information disclosure request].”

He went on to claim that the messages did not relate to government business, but to Labour group discussions where colleagues were making comments “to and about each other”.

In February, Nation.Cymru also revealed how a business man convicted of dumping sludge on a sensitive wetland site in Newport had donated £200,000 to Mr Gething’s election campaign.

Several members of the First Minister’s Cabinet and his Labour backbenchers have said he shouldn’t have taken a money.

Mr Gething narrowly defeated Jeremy Miles in the contest to succeed Mark Drakeford as party leader.

Many have taken the view that he would not have won without the considerable financial support provided to him by Dauson.

According the BBC Wales, it’s estimated that £31,000 left over from Mr Gething’s campaign to be First Minister will be given to the Labour Party having spent most of the £250,000 he was gifted.

We later revealed that the company which bankrolled the First Minister’s election campaign owe £400,000 to a bank wholly owned by the Welsh Government.

Nation.Cymru does not reveal its sources.

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John Rogers
John Rogers
28 days ago

Apart from the dubious nature of the “sacking”, interestingly a senedd member from North Wales replaced by one from the South. Another part of VG’s grand “empire building” plan ?

28 days ago

VG & his loyalists making a last stand in his South East redoubt ?

Mab Meirion
Mab Meirion
28 days ago

Farm dogs barking in the night…

25 days ago

the writing’s on the wall and in the song ” you gotta go now”
Do the honourable thing if you have any

Last edited 25 days ago by T3DSK1

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