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Friday, February 13, 2009

Judge and Jury

Jenny Randerson's complaint that the First Minister breached the Ministerial Code of Conduct by pre-judging a consultation on a school reorganisation in his constituency has been rejected - by Rhodri Morgan.

It seems that Rhodri is the appropriate person to complain to when the Ministerial code is breached and he is the person who decides whether he has acted inappropriately or not.

No doubt he will ensure that he remains at arms length from any decision on schools in his Cardiff West constituency.

Update: Jenny Randerson has again written to the First Minister, outlining which sections of the Ministerial code she believes he may have broken and has asked for a formal investigation to take place.

She has cited two sections which underline the importance of Ministers not making comments on such events in their Ministerial capacity.

She said "I am determined that this is resolved as I believe the First Minister may have compromised due process in the case of school reorganisation in Cardiff which will eventually need to be approved by a member of his cabinet.

"I am concerned about the fact that the First Minister is expected to deal with complaints about himself and his reply to me yesterday underlines that issue. I will be raising this as a separate matter.

"Sections 4.7 and 4.8 of the code clearly show that in their capacity as Ministers, members of the Government must not comment on individual cases which their cabinet colleagues are involved in, as in this case.

"I hope that the First Minister will now understand the seriousness of this complaint and that it will be investigated quickly."

Meanwhile, things are obviously getting tense over this matter on the fifth floor of Tŷ Hywel between the two coalition partners if this article in the South Wales Echo is anything to go by.

They report that Plaid Cymru leader Ieuan Wyn Jones has issued a veiled warning to Cardiff Council’s deputy leader Neil McEvoy to tone down his attacks on Rhodri Morgan:

Mr Jones is understood to be disappointed by the heated language used in the row over the mooted closure of a Cardiff primary school with a mix of ethnic minority and white pupils.

....In a statement issued through a spokeswoman yesterday, Mr Jones distanced himself from the criticism of Mr Morgan and called for a return to a constructive and sensible debate.

He said: “This is now in the hands of the independent Commission for Equality and Human Rights and it will be a matter for the commission to decide whether or not to hold an investigation.

“In the meantime we should return to the position where a constructive and sensible debate is held about the proposed reorganisation of schools in Cardiff.”

Perhaps he might like to make the same plea to the First Minister and his employee, Labour Councillor Ramesh Patel, whose tone and language have helped to turn a difficult consultation involving tough decisions into a major incident.
Perhaps she should complain to the Queen. But in all seriousness, a Governor-General with reserve powers wouldn't be a bad idea.
Isn't Paul Murphy the Governor-General?
I totally agree with Jenny Randerson regarding First Minister comments on education proposals in Cardiff at FMQ’s.

As Cardiff council leader Rodney Berman rightly said: “The consultation on these proposals with the local community is still ongoing and yet it seems the First Minister is already reaching judgements on what the council is proposing. How can we now expect that his government will give these proposals a proper hearing and ultimately assess them fairly and impartially?”

It beggers belief and an insult to democracy in having Rhodri Morgan decides if Rhodri Morgan was wrong or not. How can anyone defend that?
everyone needs to eat a carrot, read a book ,draw there pension and go skateboarding
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