Politicians like to re-write history when it suits them, usually some years after the event.
Ken Skates, the Labour AM for Clwyd South, has decided to re-write some very recent history by claiming that “Potentially, Plas Madoc would never have closed had its future been examined in the context of Flintshire and Wrexham councils merging.”
The Labour Party’s sudden interest in merging Wrecsam and Flintshire councils – now supported by three Labour ministers in Cardiff - emerged after Labour lost control of Wrecsam Council over the summer. There is clearly a feeling that the merger between Labour-led Flintshire and Independent-led Wrecsam would lead to a larger Labour-led authority.
To try to speed this merger up, politicians like Ken Skates are having to deploy all manner of arguments but the headline grabber appears to be that Plas Madoc Leisure Centre would have been saved if the merger was supported.
There is an inconvenient truth in all this spinning – back in November 2013 it was a Labour-run council that proposed closing Plas Madoc. In December 2013 it was a Labour-dominated executive board that voted to close Plas Madoc and in February 2014 it was Labour councillors that voted against an Independent group motion to keep Plas Madoc open for another year.
The Labour group subsequently split and the council is now run by Independents. It’s only now that anyone has had the cheek to claim that merging the councils would have saved Plas Madoc. The truth is that a Labour council failed to listen to the people, failed to respond imaginatively to other options and paid the price. Plas Madoc is in danger of being used by the same party to try to save its political skin.
A notorious propagandist once said “If you’re going to tell a lie, tell a big one”. Ken’s just told a whopper.