Welsh Liberal Democrat members have chosen the party’s lead candidates for the North Wales Assembly regional list election.
A democratic postal ballot of all members in the region chose the following candidates for the regional list in 2016:
1. Aled Roberts
2. Victor Babu
3. Sarah Lesiter-Burgess
4. Rob Walsh
Aled Roberts is the current Liberal Democrat Assembly Member for North Wales having been first elected in 2011. He believes that North Wales is often neglected by politicians based in Cardiff. He has campaigned against a 10% increase in Assembly Members’ pay and against fracking. He has campaigned for a better-run health service and more investment in North Wales roads and rail, private and public transport. Before becoming an AM he was Leader of Wrexham Council for six years and a Ponciau Councillor for 20 years. Born and brought up in Rhosllannerchrugog and educated in Wrexham, Aled gained a law degree from Aberystwyth and initially worked as a solicitor. In the Assembly he is Shadow Education Minister for the Lib Dems and also speaks on Welsh Language and Older People’s issues for the Party. He is a leading member of the Assembly’s Public Accounts and Children and Young People Committees.
Dr Victor Babu is a local surgeon working in Ysbyty Glan Clwyd and lives with his family in Colwyn Bay. He believes that we deserve a better health service in North Wales and supports the Welsh Liberal Democrats’ proposals to enforce safe nursing levels by law. Dr Babu has called for a strong independent health watchdog in Wales along with cross party commissioning to stop the Welsh NHS being used as a political football.
Sarah Lesiter-Burgess is a mother of 3 children and a Community Councillor in Glan Conwy where she lives with her family. She has campaigned for safer access to schools and against the closure of community facilities. Living in a rural area she is aware of the issues facing farmers who do not always receive fair prices or fair treatment by the Welsh Government. Sarah believes that the Welsh Government must give top priority to attracting new industries and expanding access to fast internet services.
Rob Walsh is a county councillor in Wrexham. Last year he won a spectacular victory for the Liberal Democrats in a by-election to become councillor for the ward of Llay. He gained over half the votes cast in what many regarded as a safe Labour seat. Rob, who is also a lecturer for Coleg Cambria in Wrexham, believes that all children should receive an equal start in life. He has been a passionate supporter for annual increases in the Pupil Deprivation Grant which gives schools with higher numbers of children from poor backgrounds more money to spend.
Aled Roberts AM, lead Welsh Liberal Democrat candidate for North Wales, said:
“The Welsh Liberal Democrats have a strong record of delivery for the people of North Wales. As a result of budget negotiations with Labour’s Welsh Government who have been one seat short of a majority we have led budget negotiations that have delivered substantial extra finance for the region’s schools, discounted bus travel for over 24,000 of the region’s young people, and so much more which would not be happening without the Welsh Lib Dems.
“The choice for the fourth seat in North Wales is clear: do you want a hard-working Welsh Lib Dem AM fighting for North Wales with a proven track record, or UKIP who have no record for campaigning in North Wales outside election times. You may have forgotten that they have one Member of the European Parliament who is supposed to represent Wales, but we rarely hear from him.
“I’ve spoken to traditional Plaid, Labour and Conservative voters on the doorsteps over the past few months who are lending their second regional list votes to the Welsh Lib Dems to stop UKIP. I’d urge anyone who utterly opposes their views to do the same.”