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‘Labour have shown nothing but contempt for Wales’ democratic system’– Eluned Parrott AM

February 24, 2012 11:22 AM

Welsh Liberal Democrat AM, Eluned Parrott, has strongly criticised the Welsh Labour Government after it refused for the fourth week in a row to put up a Minister to answer questions on the BBC's flagship political programme 'Dragon's Eye' concerning Awema.

It has also come to light that the Labour Party instructed the BBC that it would only allow former Awema official and Labour Assembly Member, Vaughan Gething, to appear on the condition that he is not to be interviewed alongside an opposition politician.

Eluned Parrott, who also appeared on the show last evening, commented:

"The media is one of the most important pillars of our democracy. It is astonishing that the Welsh Labour Government can display such contempt for Wales' democratic system by not sending its Ministers to answer questions. What this Government doesn't appear to appreciate is that the more it tries to duck and hide from being held to account, the more it seems that it has something to cover up.

"I am equally appalled at the notion of the Labour Party specifically instructing our media that a representative of its party will only appear on the condition that the opposition is not allowed to debate with them. To instruct that there must be a barrier between itself and any sort of opposition is a disgrace.

"The Welsh Labour Government has refused every opportunity presented to it to clarify why it decided to not heed advice regarding serious financial and managerial problems at Awema. In spite of intense public and media interest, this evasive Government still seems to think that it can wriggle out of being held to account. The authoritarian nature that it conducts itself is an affront to democracy and the people of Wales deserve better.

"Hiding behind various reports as an excuse not to comment is bordering on cowardice. The Welsh Liberal Democrats will not let this matter rest."