A Tory Member of the Senedd has been deselected as a candidate for the upcoming election.
Nick Ramsey, the MS for Monmouth, lost a vote of the constituency’s party association after a petition by members to reconsider the decision to readopt him as a candidate.
Mr Ramsay, who has represented the conservatives in Cardiff Bay since 2007, took the members to court over the petition, but later withdrew his legal challenge.
After he dropped the court action a judge ordered him to pay £25,000 in costs after deciding the case had no merit.
Following this decision, Mr Ramsay, who chairs the Senedd’s Public Accounts Committee, issued a statement in which he said: “I accept the democratic process. It is still not clear why this petition was called.
“I stand by my position that a minority have caused this disruption which has distracted us from our core aims and responsibilities in such awful and difficult times. Nevertheless, it is their right to be heard but also the vast majority of the members of the association that support me will also be heard.
“I thank those for all the heart-warming messages of support I have received; it made me more determined to fight this injustice and to stand up for them.
“I faced the meeting on the basis that I had not protected the financial interests of Monmouthshire. That cannot be accurate as I have fought tooth and nail against a Welsh Labour-controlled government for the best interests of Monmouthshire and my constituents. Once again this is contrived by someone to criticise me unfairly.
“I fully engage with the democratic process but the reality is I was the adopted candidate over 18 months ago, and since that time I have fought day and the night for the best interests of my constituents and my party. I will continue to do this.”
The party will now throw open the selection process to other members.
Mr Ramsay was previously suspended by after he was arrested at home on New Year’s Day. He was released without charge, and he forced his party to drop his suspension from the Senedd with a legal challenge.