A contentious ‘news’ website supported by public funds whose ‘Editor’ backs Welsh independence and has urged people to vote for a nationalist party, published the views of a right wing blogger who posted a picture of a paramilitary group leader holding a gun, The Eye can reveal.
Royston Jones, who lauds his time in the Free Wales Army (FWA) in the 1960s, described on Nation.Cymru ‘elderly people’ coming to Wales as “incomers” who are taking up too many places in Welsh care homes, and that the situation is “absurd”.
But the controversial published views may enrage many ‘elderly people’ from England now in Wales, made in the comments section below an article on the headline-grabbing website which is linked to supporters of the nationalist party Plaid Cymru (PC).
Royston Jones was a founding member of Ein Gwlad (EG, Our Land) which became Gwlad, Gwlad (GG, Land, Land), and fielded a number of candidates in the General Election last December who all lost their deposits.
Royston Jones wrote on Nation.Cymru: “Let’s be brutally honest. For too long elderly people moving from England to Wales has been viewed as a growth industry by the ‘Welsh Government’, local authorities, and of course the owners and providers of care homes.
“This is an absurd and self-defeating ‘economy’ when all the negatives are taken into account. So why is it encouraged?”.
The comments come after revelations on The Eye that Ms Caiach claimed Mr Jones had been ‘forced off’ the ‘governing committee’ of EG/GG.
He styles himself in documents as an ‘Investigative Journalist’, and proclaims on his blog ‘Jac o’ the North’ that it is: “Interpreting Wales from a Right of Centre Nationalist perspective”, and his picture of FWA leader Cayo Evans is of him pointing a hand gun at the camera as others look on smiling.
He revels in his long-standing support for the FWA and has praised Evans as a “friend” and “comrade”.
The FWA came to prominence more than 50 years ago, and it has been reported that the Official IRA (OIRA) gave or sold, most of its weapons to the organisation as part of its turn away from political violence.
But Nation.Cymru has also been no stranger to controversy after The Eye revealed its ‘Editor’ Ifan Morgan Jones is a prominent backer of Welsh independence and told people to vote PC, yet his website is supported by taxpayers’ money through the Books Council of Wales (BCW).
Ifan Morgan Jones told a critic on Twitter: ‘The claim in (our) article that the site was set up “with the backing of leading figures in the nationalist party Paid Cymru” is just nonsense. I set it up myself off my own bat.’.
But Ifan Morgan Jones should know as a lecturer in ‘journalism’ at Bangor University’s Department of Creative Studies and Media, on a course which is not accredited by the National Council for the Training of Journalists (NCTJ), that everything published is supported by a raft of unseen evidence.
In his ‘journalist’ lectures Ifan Morgan Jones presumably tells his students about the laws of libel, that everything published is governed by them, and that reporters have a large amount of evidence in filing cabinets to back up each line.
On The Eye we have many years of experience in journalist law – our Editor Phil Parry has 36 – and are very aware of what can and cannot be published.
Ifan Morgan Jones himself published on Facebook last December a picture of a postal ballot paper with his pen hovering over the PC candidate, and has posted a photograph of himself and his partner underneath the slogan “I’m voting Plaid Cymru”.
In July 2016 he helped promote a rally for Welsh independence in Caernarfon and said that Wales: “faced being part of a state which (is) being politically neglected”.
Last September an opinion piece was published in which he said: “In an independent Wales, the future of our nation wouldn’t be decided by politicians completely removed from our concerns, like gods playing dice with our fate on the summit of Mount Olympus”.
The right-wing retired heating engineer Royston Jones too has made headlines for all the wrong reasons.
Following our revelations about Royston Jones’ connection with Evans and news on The Eye of his publication of him with a pistol, a hotel where he was to announce the formation of EG/GG became deeply unhappy. Officials sent a message to Royston Jones saying: “With regards to … concerns, we have now cancelled your meeting room with full refund of payment”.
He then advertised on his blog a new venue, with the words: “I am delighted to announce that a meeting has been arranged for November 18th (2018) in Aberystwyth to discuss the formation of a new political party to defend Wales’ interests”.
Before this a ‘public’ meeting was held in Autumn 2017 and we divulged how Royston Jones had initially pledged to create the new party with an Annual General Meeting (AGM) penciled in for March 3 2018, but nothing happened.
EG/GG was finally unveiled at Llanelli later last year, but another nationalist blog had ‘reported’ earlier that a first ‘conference’ was to be held before the end of 2018.
Royston Jones’ support for the FWA and Evans, as well as previous statements have been questioned, and it seemed our Editor had become something of an irritant.
On November 19 (2018) Royston Jones had written on his blog: “The meeting yesterday went very, very well. I was delighted with the turnout and with the enthusiasm shown…perhaps the one disappointment – given the interest he’s shown in the new party – was that Phil Parry of The Eye wasn’t there. You could have had a scoop, Parry – ‘Shock! Horror! irritating little git thrown out of meeting”.