Liz Saville Roberts MP to address party conference in Aberystwyth

Plaid Cymru’s Westminster leader, Liz Saville Roberts MP, will today (Saturday 7 October) use her keynote speech to party members in Aberystwyth to say that “Plaid Cymru – and only Plaid Cymru – fights for Wales in Westminster”.

Ms Saville Roberts will say that the a “gap” between the Labour First Minister Mark Drakeford and Labour leader Keir Starmer is “widening”, referring to issues of disagreement between the two, including the campaign for fair transport funding for Wales, the devolution of the Crown Estate,  proportional representation, and the devolution of policing.

She will criticise Labour MPs from Wales for siding with the party’s “London bosses” rather than the Welsh First Minister, Mark Drakeford.

Hinting at the Labour leader’s refusal on Thursday to say that Welsh Labour is a “blueprint for power”, Ms Saville Roberts will say:

“With the gap between Mark Drakeford and Keir Starmer widening, Labour MPs - who should be representing Wales’s interests - ignore or pour scorn on the views of their Welsh Labour in the Senedd, who increasingly follow Plaid Cymru’s lead.

“Take the devolution of policing and justice. Plaid Cymru and Mark Drakeford are on the same page. But the First Minister’s London bosses and Labour MPs in Westminster are protesting passionately for hoarding powers in Westminster – despite all of the evidence of the social damage and waste of resources it’s causing.

“Plaid Cymru – and only Plaid Cymru – fights for Wales in Westminster.”

The Dwyfor Meirionnydd MP will point to the fact that 90% of Welsh Labour MPs currently hold shadow ministerial roles:

“Ninety per cent of Welsh Labour MPs currently enjoy shadow ministerial posts. All will be gunning for a cushy post in a Keir Starmer government. Those MPs’ focus will be on advancing the interests of the next Labour government – not on delivering for communities.

“Labour in the Senedd have rightly lambasted the Tories on HS2. What will they say when Keir Starmer hoards our owed billions too?

“We know they’ll make excuses. Because for Labour – party comes before country.”

On the recent HS2 announcement, she will remind delegates that Plaid Cymru MPs were the only Welsh representatives in Parliament to vote against the HS2 bill in 2013. They did so on the basis that Wales did not receive fair funding.

She will say:

“Plaid Cymru MPs were the only Welsh MPs to vote against the HS2 legislation back in 2013. While other MPs swallowed the Westminster spin that it would deliver improvements for Welsh passengers, Plaid Cymru withheld our support unless we received fair funding.

“We weren’t fooled then. And we won’t swallow Westminster’s spin now.

“Let’s end the great rail betrayal for good. Plaid Cymru will accept nothing less than full compensation for every penny of rail spend in England.”