Vaughan Gething will be First Minister for a 'good length of time', says Cabinet Secretary

  • ITV Wales' Joanne Gallacher spoke with Cabinet Secretary for Transport, Ken Skates. Words by ITV Wales' National Correspondent, Rob Osborne.

Vaughan Gething will be in office for a “good length of time”, according to a senior member of the Welsh Government.

It comes as the Conservatives brand Vaughan Gething "the squatter in Cathays Park" after the First Minister lost a confidence vote in the Senedd on Wednesday.

Mr Gething is now in France, representing Wales at the D-Day commemorations, but here, Transport Secretary and key Gething ally Ken Skates called the Conservative's confidence motion 'vulgar.'

Asked what he thought the future held for Mr Gething, Mr Skates said: "Vaughan will be leading Welsh Labour for a good length of time."

The non-binding vote was lost after former Labour ministers Hannah Blythyn, who was recently sacked from the Welsh Government, and former Transport Minister Lee Waters failed to vote. The two were ill.

The embattled First Minister slammed the Conservative motion against him, calling it a 'desperate gimmick.' He refuses to resign, defiantly stating after the vote: "If anyone has questions about my integrity, I would like to see some evidence about what that looks like."

The two opposition parties have yet to decide their next move. Plaid Cymru has called on the First Minister to resign.

Despite labelling the First Minister a squatter, I understand some in the opposition benches are split on whether they want Mr Gething removed from office, with some believing it is in their interests to keep him there for as long as possible.

Meanwhile, Welsh Labour is publicly split. This week, former First Minister Mark Drakeford rebuked the Education Secretary after she abandoned plans to change the school timetable.

Mr Gething's 78-day tenure has been dogged by questions about donations, deleted messages and sackings. He is determined to fight on, but it is unlikely the pressures surrounding him will ease soon.

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