Starmer calls for more devolution at Welsh Labour conference
Sir Keir Starmer has called for more devolution as he addresses the Welsh Labour conference.
In a keynote speech at the gathering in Llandudno, the UK Labour leader said it is time to use the “spirit of devolution” to “transform Britain, give the communities and great nations of this country the powers they need to control their destiny”.
“Here in Wales, it’s fair to say you know the difference Labour can make better than other parts of Britain.”
He urged delegates not to “forget how the Tories meted out the pain to Wales over 13 years”.
“…we need to meet the forces of division with renewed hope,” he added.
“That’s what our five national missions are all about. I will never accept that this country is destined for decline, that our best days belong to the past. Success is all around us, it just needs direction.”
The leader of the UK Party also pledged that a Labour Government would give Wales control over its “economic destiny” by returning powers to Cardiff over the replacement for EU aid.
He told party members: “The argument is simple, the decisions which create wealth in our communities should be taken by people with skin in the game.
“The Tories have used the Brexit process to take back control of that money. Not from the EU – from Wales. It’s an outrage.”
He said “the next Labour government will return power over its economic destiny to Wales”.
“The decision-making role for the Welsh government on structural funds, will be restored. It’s time for Wales to take back control.”
The Welsh government administered £375m a year on average when the UK was in the European Union.
The cash has been gradually wound down and will end this year, with the planned replacement, the Shared Prosperity Fund, controlled by the UK government.
Sir Keir added there is an “impatience for change and national renewal” and “the British people are turning to Labour to provide it”.
The politics of restoring hope is hard as the change offered “must also be credible” and “working people have had enough of false promises.”
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.