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Three in the race to unseat Welsh Government minister Dafydd Elis-Thomas

06 May 2019 3 minute read
Dafydd Elis-Thomas. Picture by the National Assembly (CC BY 2.0)

Three Plaid Cymru candidates have announced their intention to contest the Dwyfor-Meirionnydd seat in the 2021 Assembly elections, with the final candidate to be chosen at the end of June.

The incumbent Assembly Member, Dafydd Elis-Thomas, ran as a Plaid Cymru candidate in the May 2016 elections but left the party in October of that year.

He subsequently accepted a job as minister for culture, tourism and sport in the Labour-led Welsh Government.

He is expected to stand again, making it a key battleground seat for Plaid Cymru at the elections.

Cllr. Mabon ap Gwynfor, who represents Llandrillo ward in the old county of Meirionnydd on Denbighshire County Council, announced his intention to stand at the Nefyn show today.

Mabon is the third candidate following the announcement last week of Nia Jeffreys and Simon Brooks.

“Dwyfor-Meirionnydd has vast wealth in terms of its cultural impact and natural resources,” Mabon ap Gwynfor said.

“However, the economic policies of both London and Cardiff have focused entirely on developing the infrastructure and wealth of those areas, while neglecting rural north Wales.

“Dwyfor-Meirionnydd’s greatest asset is the people who live here. They have fought back against a centralised system that’s deserted the region, and they’re building their communities from the bottom up.

“Tafarn yr Heliwr here in Nefyn and Tafarn y Plu in Llanystumdwy are just the two most recent examples of community cooperatives. We need to use these exemplars, and others like Antur Stiniog and the Mawddach Wholefood Cooperative, as models to build a sustainable and green economy in Dwyfor-Meirionnydd.

“Creating jobs by investing in our communities and infrastructure is key, and this will be a central plank of my message as I look to earn the members votes over the coming weeks.”

Gwynedd County Cllr Nia Jeffreys said that she was the “local candidate” having been bought up in a close knit working case community in Porthmadog.

“I am passionate about Plaid’s core values, having been a loyal and active member for many years,” she said.

“People drive my politics – the ultimate aim of independence and any policies must be to improve people’s lives be they students, small business owners or farmers.

“I will put all the energy and drive I put into my work to win in Porthmadog , where I doubled the vote for Plaid into the campaign to bring Dwyfor Meirionnydd home to Plaid”

Porthmadog Town Cllr Simon Brooks said that he would use his candidacy to ask asking how a Plaid Government can best address the needs of communities in Dwyfor Meirionnydd.

“I’ll be campaigning on the slogan, ‘Tai, Gwaith, Iaith – Homes, Work, Language’,” he said.

“I want to intervene in Welsh politics to make devolution work for Gwynedd and Welsh-speaking communities. We have been failed by it until now.”

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