Tuesday, 17 November 2009

Ian Lucas goes bilingual!

Readers of this blog will recall my campaign to extend Section 6 of the Welsh Language Act to Members of Parliament, so that they would have to produce material for public consumption bilingually. This followed publication by Ian Lucas MP of his annual report which was all in English despite 14% of the population of his constituency speaking Welsh. Not having had much success in corresponding with Mr Lucas direct and with the Welsh Language Board being unable to help; I then presented a petition to the Assembly Petitions Committee which following legal advice decided that the Culture Minister had the necessary powers to amend the Act to include MP's within its provisions. This was reported in detail by BBC Wales
When asked to respond by the BBC at the time he declined but the BBC report said:
Mr Lucas declined to be interviewed, but said that his "minuscule" allowance did not cover costs of translating reports.

Today I received a Parliamentary Update from Mr Lucas with the Welsh translation, "Diweddariad Seneddol" below the title.

Also included on the leaflet was the following note:
"If you would like a copy of this Update in Welsh, please contact me and I will be pleased to supply it"

Os hoffech gopi o'r diweddariad hwn yn Gymraeg cysylltwch a mi os gwelwch yn dda a byddaf yn falch o anfon un."

This leaflet was paid for from Mr Lucas's 'miniscule' Communications Allowance.

Now as all my friends know I am not one to gloat or to challenge someone's motivation for changing their mind but it does make one think whether Alun Ffred has quietely had a word with the Welsh MP's and told them to get their act in gear and to start providing an equal service to Welsh speakers. Or perhaps it could be that Mr Lucas is reaching out to those Welsh speakers who can make the world of difference at the next election, a swing of 15% away from Labour in Wrecsam is all it needs, and it happened in Norwich North!

Whatever the reason I am grateful that he has seen the light.


Anonymous said...

what a shame he managed to mis-spell Senneddol!

Pads said...

He's a Carwyn supporter. Betty Williams must have made him do it!