The Welsh Liberal Democrats have unveiled their Clwyd South candidate for the upcoming Welsh Assembly Elections.
Wrexham and Clwyd South Liberal Democrats have announced that Aled Roberts will stand as the Welsh Liberal Democrats candidate for the Assembly Elections in the Clwyd South seat.
Mr Roberts was the former Leader of Wrexham Council between 2005 and 2011 and for the past five years has served as the Liberal Democrat Regional AM for North Wales.
Speaking about the decision, Mr Roberts said: “I am delighted that local Liberal Democrats have backed me to stand in Clwyd South for the Assembly,” said Aled Roberts. “In my campaign I want to highlight three major issues.
“The first is the 10% pay rise for Assembly Members which I have opposed – the only AM in North Wales to do so. At a time when so many cuts are being proposed to vital services in our communities and working people have to survive on pay increases of 1%, it is not only wrong, but immoral.
“If elected I will donate the pay increase I receive after paying tax to local charities – I couldn’t look my constituents in the face if I did anything less.
“The second issue I want to campaign on is the state of our health service. Too often the Welsh NHS is used as a political football – the Welsh Government highlights success but fails to get to grips with management problems. On the other hand Conservatives make unrealistic promises to increase funding in complete contradiction to the cuts they are making at Westminster.
“Then Plaid Cymru promise to recruit more doctors when we can’t fill existing posts while their plan to create an all-Wales Hospital Board would create yet again the sort of structural upheaval that has been so damaging in the past – not to mention that it would probably mean North Wales hospitals being managed from South Wales.
“There have been too many reorganisations in our health service over the last 15 years. What we need to do now is work with dedicated staff on the front line to improve the way in which individual services are run. Some progress is being made but this needs to be speeded up so that waiting times start to decline and new patients are not forced to wait in ambulances outside Ysbyty Wrexham Maelor because there is no bed for them.
Mr Roberts added: “The third issue I want to highlight is education. During the last five years we have managed to get the Welsh Government to agree substantial increases in funding children who receive free school meals. Also as a result of Lib Dem pressure 16-18 year olds now receive a one third discount on all their journeys by bus. In this election one of our priorities will be capping class sizes at 25. Children are our future and I don’t think that anyone will argue with the view that teachers should have the time to properly teach every child.
“I am looking forward to the campaign and hope to meet as many people as possible over the next few months to discuss the issues of AM pay, the Welsh NHS and fracking along with any others that concern Clwyd South residents.”
Local Liberal Democrats Chair, Rob Walsh said: “A former Leader of Wrexham Council between 2005 and 2011 Aled Roberts is well known as an effective campaigner who gets things done.
“Since 2011 when he was elected Liberal Democrat Regional Member for North Wales, Aled has campaigned tirelessly. With the support of local campaigners he secured the survival of the T3 bus which links Wrexham with Barmouth.
“When the Welsh Government decided against dualling all the railway line between Wrexham and Chester Aled campaigned against leaving out the section between Wrexham and Rossett – he pointed out that this omission would make it impossible to create commuter trains linking Wrexham with Manchester and Liverpool.
“Aled stands heads and shoulders above most politicians in North Wales with his knowledge, understanding and determination to find solutions to problems. I am certain that, if elected, he would make bring about change for the good of everyone in Clwyd South.”
Aled Roberts joins Welsh Labour candidate Ken Skates, Welsh Conservative candidate Simon Baynes, Plaid Cymru candidate Mabon ap Gwynfor, Green Party candidate Duncan Rees and UKIP candidate Mandy Jones.
Voting for the Welsh Assembly Elections will take place on Thursday 5th of May – if you want to vote – make sure you are registered , or still registered on https://www.gov.uk/register-to-vote!