'I'm carrying on as leader' insists Vaughan Gething as opposition parties urge him to resign

  • Mike Griffiths reports from Chepstow.

First Minister Vaughan Gething insists he won't step down, despite the Senedd passing a no-confidence vote in his leadership.

On Wednesday, Members of the Senedd voted with 29 in favour and 27 against. The motion therefore was passed.

Two Labour members - former Social Partnership Minister Hannah Blythyn, who was recently sacked by Mr Gething, and former Deputy Climate Change Minister Lee Waters were absent due to illness and did not vote.

The result is not binding and does not compel the First Minister to resign.

On the General Election campaign trail in Chepstow on Saturday, Mr Gething hit out at opposition parties for not allowing a 'pairing' arrangement to take into account absent members of his own group.

"I'm interested in leading us into what I believe will be a much better future for all of us." Credit: ITV Cymru Wales

"If we'd had this arrangement in any other parliament, I think the usual arrangements would have applied. There was a deliberate choice not to do that"

"If this goes through to a different conclusion, that doesn't make the business of the parliament any easier.

"I'm committed to doing the right thing for my country, and the way that I lead and serve my country".

From scrutiny over donations to his leadership campaign, to disappearing Whatsapp messages, to sacking Hannah Blythyn over allegedly leaking phone messages - accusations she denies - it has been a turbulent start to Mr Gething's tenure as First Minister.

During the Senedd's vote of no-confidence, he appeared to become emotional, being handed a tissue and dabbing his eyes while Labour MS Vikki Howells spoke in defence of him.

Members of the Senedd voted with 29 in favour and 27 against, therefore passing the motion of no confidence. Credit: Senedd TV

On Saturday, the First Minister told ITV Wales he still had a strong mandate to lead.

He said: "I'm carrying on as the leader. I won my one vote ballot less than three months ago. I have been first minister for less than three months.

"There's a big opportunity ahead of us and everyone understands that once you have a result of an election like that, you've got to have the support of people, like me, who are only stood in front of you because of the platform I have been given by my party and the movement."

Continuing, he said: "I am interested in doing the right thing for all members, not just my group, but I'll do the right thing for the country and I'm interested in leading us into what I believe will be a much better future for all of us."

Tom Giffard MS, of the Welsh Conservatives, said: "I think it's disappointing that Vaughan Gething has decided to completely ignore the Senedd, and frankly, the people of Wales."

He continued: "It's been very clear that they have no confidence in the leadership of Vaughan Gething as First Minister of Wales. This is not a regular occurrence, it is not business as usual.

"This is a really serious message sent to Vaughan Gething, really big questions about his judgment, and it is incredibly arrogant of him to just ignore that."

He concluded: "For the good of Wales, for the good of being able to legislate and address the people of Wales, Vaughan Gething needs to go and he needs to go now."

Plaid Cymru'S Mabon ap Gwynfor MS said: "We need to realise that the First Minister is only in position because he has the support of the Senedd.

"The senedd votes for the First Minister. In this instance, the Senedd made it clear that we have no confidence in the First Minister, so he should respect the view and the will of the senedd and step down."

He added: "Unfortunately, he has shown complete contempt, not only to the senedd, but to democracy in Wales and to the people of Wales by staying in position against the view of the senedd. He should really step down.”

Candidates for Monmouthshire

  • Ioan Bellin - Plaid Cymru - The Party of Wales

  • Ian Chandler - Green Party

  • David Davies - Conservative and Unionist Party

  • June Davies - True & Fair Party

  • Carl Dymond - Reform UK

  • Catherine Fookes - Labour Party

  • Owen Lewis - Independent

  • Bill Powell - Liberal Democrats

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