Political row over small schools

First published in News

Sacked Cabinet member Cllr Gethin James and opposition leader Cllr Ceredig Davies rounded on Plaid leader Cllr Ellen ap Gwynn in a heated discussion about school closures at this week's Cabinet meeting.

Amid accusations of political table tennis, Cllr Gethin James, who was sacked three weeks ago for joining Ukip, told Cllr ap Gwynn that she was going against Plaid's 2012 election manifesto that pledged to save small schools.

"If you had dissolved the coalition three weeks ago would Plaid Cymru have taken these closures off the table?" he asked referring to the row over his sacking.

And Cllr Davies waded in: "Are you saying that the Indpendents forced you to go down a different path?"

And to a round of applause from the public gallery, he said: "When people ticket the ballot box for Plaid they believed they were saving their schools," he said.

"We are looking for clarity."

Cllr ap Gwynn retorted that the decision to close small schools of 20 pupils or under had been made at a full council meeting.

"I put a moratorium on the closure of small schools and we had a report from an external advisor. We reviewed the policy as a new council and you were all party to it," she said.

And she added: "When I stood for election I stood by the manifesto. When we didn't have enough members we had to go into coalition and work between all the members."

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