Mark Drakeford delivers emotional final speech as first minister of Wales after 'saddest' 12 months

  • Mark Drakeford chokes up as he delivers his final speech in the Senedd as first minister.

Mark Drakeford delivered an emotional resignation speech during his final First Minister's Questions at the Senedd, saying the last 12 months have been the "hardest" and the "saddest" of his life.

Mr Drakeford, 69, has held the top job since 2019 and will be best remembered for leading the country through Covid.

He faced one final questioning from opposition politicians on his final day in post.

His successor, Vaughan Gething, who was elected leader of the Labour party on Saturday 16 March, is set to be nominated to be first minister on Wednesday, 20 March.

'The people deserve a short period of silence'

Mr Drakeford will still serve as Member of the Senedd for Cardiff West and is looking forward to stepping back from the spotlight.

He said: "I will be very glad to get my weekends back and not to spend Tuesday mornings in the mad dash for FMQs."

As for whether he will be vocal from the backbenches, he said: "I think the people deserve a short period of silence, as they say, I don't think I'll be dashing to do it straight away but there are two years to go."

Mark Drakeford preparing for his final FMQs. Credit: Welsh Government

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