Tuesday, December 08, 2009

Welsh Assembly Member Defects to Tories

Mohammad Asghar, Plaid Cymru member of the National Assembly for Wales for South East Wales, has today defected to the Welsh Conservatives. Rather a coup, I'd have thought. Welsh Tories have just issued a statement...
PLAID Cymru Assembly Member Mohammad Asghar and his daughter Natasha – a former Plaid candidate – have joined the Conservative Party, it was announced today. Mohammad, AM for South Wales East, and Natasha, who stood in Blaenau Gwent at the 2007 Assembly elections and in June’s European elections, were formally welcomed to the Conservative Party at an event in Cardiff today.

Mohammad – known to friends as Oscar – becomes the first sitting Assembly Member to cross the floor and join another party. His defection takes the Welsh Conservative group in the National Assembly to 13 and means the party now has two AMs representing South Wales East.

Mohammad Asghar said: “For some time now I have felt out of tune with the views and policies of Plaid Cymru. My politics are very much in line with wanting a stronger Wales within a successful United Kingdom. I believe that the Welsh Conservative Party in the National Assembly, led by Nick Bourne, reflects my beliefs. I am also attracted by the caring Conservatism and policies for change put forward by David Cameron and the Conservative Party at Westminster. I very much look forward to playing an important role in the shadow team in the National Assembly and to helping to shape the policies for the Assembly elections in 2011.”

Welsh Conservative Assembly leader Nick Bourne said:

“I am absolutely delighted to welcome Oscar and Natasha to the Conservative Party. I am also delighted that Oscar is going to be part of our Assembly team in the run-up to the next Assembly elections. He is a man who commands respect within the Assembly and the communities of South Wales East.

“Natasha is an energetic campaigner and an experienced candidate. I look forward to them both playing an important role in the Conservative Party in the future. Today’s decision is another sign that only the Conservative Party, under David Cameron’s leadership, can bring about the change Wales and Britain needs. We hope others will follow Mohammad and Natasha’s example and join us to make that change happen.”

Last night a Labour councillor in Croydon also crossed the floor to the Conservatives.


Paddy Briggs said...


Labour councillor in Croydon defects to the Tories!


Penddu said...

But can he do that?? He was elected from a party list, and therefore if he resigns from Plaid he is effectively resigning from the list and should be replaced by the next Plaid name on the list.

Anyone know how this works?? Any precedents from Scotland??

Plato said...

Blimey - well at least he'll be able to sing the National Anthem ;)

Gareth said...

Welsh Assembly = Glorified Council chamber, good coup, but still not worth much

Colin said...

Delighted though I am, I think it would add considerably to his validity as an AM if he had the integrity to face his constituency elctorate at a by-election, on the grounds that he was elected as a Plaid Cymru AM and the electorate will have voted for the party as much as, if not more than, for the individual candidate.

In other news, Gloucestershire Old Spot porkers have just landed on Runway Three at Heathrow.

trevorsden said...

I am sorry to hijack the post (but on topic these defections are counter intuitive to the theory of hung parliament) --- but

In believe this is a really important post from WUWT (and if you are not regularly monitoring it you should be) which needs widespread dispersal.

It looks in depth at the way the 'inhomogeneity' of the raw data for one of the stations in North Australia has been 'adjusted' to give a quite bizarre warming trend which cannot be justified by the careful analysis of the author.


"they are indisputable evidence that the “homogenized” data has been changed to fit someone’s preconceptions about whether the earth is warming."

The author shows how it should be done and points out why there actually was no need anyway, and demonstrates what is really a period of cooling in North Australia is basically fiddled to create a mirage of warming.

Take it all in peoples - and if anyone has any faith left in the so called 'science' behind AGW then you have a lot of explaining to do.

A said...

Iain I'm (not) surprised by your lack of coverage of local by-elections these days. The Tories are getting hammered around the country.


Stonemason. said...

Mohammed Asghar, when he said "I'm a Unionist not a separatist" said publicly what a lot of Plaid supporters think, it is time to become a member of a better human race where working together makes a better bed fellow than with sunderers, lots of very sour grapes above .....

To help keep Wales in the Union your readers might like to sign a petition at No 10, it is an attempt to safeguard democracy for the public, read it at ....


Jimmy said...

Mr. Ashgar has explained that he is opposed to Welsh Independence. Turns out PC isn't.

He'll be a real asset.

hafod said...

Ashgar's command of English let alone Welsh is pretty shaky so don't expect the Tories to escape from Planet Redwood.

And the guy jumped before he was pushed because he was the weakest link. Shame he didn't tell his staff of his intention. They presumably will continue to work for him despite being Plaid members. He should resign.

trevorsden said...

Strange silence from the left when Quentin Davies defected. (Brown was happy to receive the privately educated Davis - and why not he is happy to accept millions in party funds from the Eton educated Lord Sainsbury)
This is the same Davis who claimed £10,000 of taxpayers' money for repairs to window frames at his "second home", an 18th century mansion, while staying at his "main home", a flat in Westminster

Dane Valley
"The turn-out was 17%, compared to 26%, in this ward in May 2007.
The by-election was held following the resignation of Stephen Broadhurst."

Local conditions usually apply in these cases and this is no different
"A Conservative councillor has resigned after it emerged he spends much of his time more than 5,000 miles away from his ward.
The Isle of Thanet Gazette’s sister paper the Thanet Times told last month how Stephen Broadhurst, a Thanet councillor for Dane Valley in Margate, had been asked by Tory party whip Ted Watt-Ruffell to consider his position because of the amount of time he spent looking after his business interests in Panama."

"The news comes in the same week that a Thanet council spokesman confirmed an administrative error by a secretary had meant Cllr Broadhurst had been marked as in attendance at a full council meeting this year, when in fact he was absent."

Seems to me the council are well shut of him and Tories cannot be surprised to have lost the seat.

One interesting result in September was
Birmingham City Council, Sparkbrook
Respect 2495 (39.6;-7.0), Lab 2228 (35.4;-1.3), Con 799 (12.7;+7.5), Lib Dem 506 (8.0;+1.5), Green 213 (3.4;+3.4), Ind 55 (0.9;+0.9), BNP 0 (0.0;-1.5)

Any cheer for Labour there??

Desperate Dan said...

More turncoats ready to side with the winning team whoever that may happen to be. Is there no mechanism whereby the Conservative Party can say: "Thanks but no thanks. We've got enough loyal candidates of our own thank you"?
I think its quite insulting that Labour's fairweather friends should be welcomed into the Tory Party with open arms.

Glyn Davies said...

Penddu - He is a 'regional' list member of the National Assembly for Wales. If he resigned his seat, it would go to the next name on the list Plaid Cymru fought the last election on. He would have no opportunity to contest the seat. If the next name(s) were not able to accept the position, for whatever reason, and the list were to be exhausted, the position would remain vacant until the next Welsh General Election in 2011. However if he had been one of the 40 'constituency' AMs, he would have been able to resign and fight the seat as a Conservative now. I'll blog on this issue later tonight.

McPuss said...

Nick Bourne can't even get the guy's name right. Who the **** is "Oscar"?

Malcolm Redfellow said...

Now here's a curious thing. Go to "Oscar" Asghar's personal page on the Welsh Assembly site.

Hello! We get that blue/green Tory logo (bit of an embarrassment at the moment, what?). Then we get the link to his personal website:

Oh, dear!