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Last Updated: Monday, 26 January, 2004, 09:24 GMT
'Disillusioned' Davies quits Labour
Ron Davies
Ron Davies joined the Labour Party in 1965

Former Welsh Secretary Ron Davies has resigned from a Labour Party which he says is now out of balance.

On BBC Good Morning Wales, Mr Davies said that he felt let down after 40 years in the Labour Party adding "I am disillusioned. I joined a left-of-centre party which is now right-of centre which I find myself unable to accept."

A main bone of contention was the Welsh Assembly Government's refusal to argue the case to change the Barnett formula.

He claimed the formula was costing each individual Welsh taxpayer 5 less in terms of revenue that the Whitehall government allocated to Wales and which he said was wrongly based on population and not on the actual needs of Wales.

'Avoid discussions'

Mr Davies also criticised the lack of powers of the assembly, adding: "If the assembly was used in the way it was meant to be, we would not have these problems.

"There seems to be a determination to avoid any discussions to empower the Assembly.

"For me they are just no longer capable," he added.

Mr Davies denied that media articles on his personal life were the cause of his resignation adding: "The decision was not made on the back of difficulties in my private life."

Mr Davies said the reasons for his resignation included the recent issues of university funding and the war in Iraq, but he said the biggest disappointment for him was the party in Wales.

He added he had "no plans" at present to join any other party but was happy to talk to others in order to generate political debate.

Wales Office minister Don Touhig retorted on Radio Wales that Ron Davies had been hailed as the "architect" of the Welsh assembly.

"If there is something wrong with devolution, perhaps we should ask the architect," he said.

He defended the Labour Party's record in Wales which he said had made the Welsh economy more successful and had put more people in work."

Architect of devolution
The decision was not made on the back of difficulties in my private life."


Ron Davies

The former MP and AM for Caerphilly successfully steered the Government of Wales Act through Parliament but, by October 1998, he was facing disgrace after his "moment of madness."

Within days, he was also forced to quit as leader of the Wales Labour Party.

He then resigned his AM post in March last year following controversy over newspaper reports of a woodland sex liaison.

He was replaced by the Labour Party's Jeff Cuthbert following the assembly election in May.

Mr Davies had a long history in the Labour Party, joining in 1965 and acting as a local councillor for 15 years.

Jeff Cuthbert
Jeff Cuthbert became the AM for Caerphilly in May 2003
He was born in Machen, near Newport - where he still lives - and was educated at Bassaleg Grammar, Portsmouth Polytechnic, the University College of Wales, Cardiff and London University.

He became MP for Caerphilly in 1983 and served until 2001 when he stepped down to concentrate on assembly politics.

Mr Davies currently works as director of the Valleys Race Equality Council in south Wales.




SEE ALSO:
Davies' concern over language
07 Nov 03  |  Wales
Kennedy cash call rejected
14 Jul 00  |  Scotland


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