20mph petition: 'No evidence of duplication or tampering', Senedd say

No petition has gathered more signatures in Wales since devolution was established.

There has been no evidence of "large-scale duplication or tampering" of a petition which is calling for the repeal of Wales' new 20mph default speed limit, according to the Senedd.

The petition is by far the most signed in the history of the Welsh Parliament, gaining more than 380,000 backers.

But some have raised questions about the organic nature of the number of signatures, with some speculating that a rise in search for "welsh postcodes" on google points to some putting their names to the cause despite not living Wales.

This has been cooled by a statement from the Senedd which says, despite allowing signatures from outside of Wales, most signatures come from within the country.

A Senedd spokesperson said: “We welcome the ever-increasing participation in the Senedd’s petition’s process – it has gone from strength to strength and resulted in real changes to people’s lives.

“The recent petition related to 20mph speed changes has gathered a record number of signatures.

“The petitions system is regularly monitored to check it is secure and protected against interference. It is a system with robust checks in place.

The backlash to the policy has seen the Welsh Conservatives force a vote of no confidence in the Deputy Climate Change Minister.

“We allow signatures from outside of Wales, however, the majority of signatures to our petitions, including this one, are from Wales.

“Each signatory must provide and verify an email address. We have no evidence of large-scale duplication or tampering.

“We will continue to monitor the situation closely and we want to encourage people all over Wales to engage with the Senedd’s petitions process in the future.”

The petition was set up by former Labour Party member, Mark Baker, who says he started the petition out of anger that the default 20mph speed limit was brought in without fully explaining it to people.

The law came into effect on Sunday (17 September) in most built-up areas but has since caused much debate across the country.

The minister responsible for the policy, Deputy Climate Change Minister Lee Waters MS, will face a vote of no confidence next week which has been forced by the Welsh Conservative.

Earlier this week, the First Minister said there will not be a u-turn on the policy.

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