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‘This political story will ruffle a few feathers…’

During a 40 year career as a journalist, for our Editor Phil Parry political stories have been all-important, so he watched with interest as the first black leader of a European nation lost a vote of no-confidence, and was said to be in tears before the crucial meeting in the Welsh Parliament/Senedd Cymru (WP/SC).


Clichés can be true.

Try this one: “The bigger they come the harder they fall”.

Vaughan Gething was so upset at being a loser

It means the more powerful or successful someone or a group is, the more disastrous a loss is to accept.

We have just seen one of the greatest losses we might ever see.

Remember it was only in March that Vaughan Gething made history when he became the only black leader of any European country (succeeding Mark Drakeford) as the First Minister of Wales (FMW).

Now, though, he is disgraced and has just lost a vote of no-confidence in the Welsh Parliament/Senedd Cymru (WP/SC), after politicians there lined up against him.

Was money handed over?

This has come after a succession of scandals, and, it seems MSs (Members of the Senedd) had had enough.

The main one (although certainly not the only one), has been his connection to a man with a dubious past.

There have been months of rows over donations to Mr Gething’s leadership campaign from a company owned by a man previously convicted of environmental offences.

The company is owned by David John Neal, a man given suspended sentences in 2013 for the illegal dumping of waste, and in 2017 of not cleaning it up.

David John Neal wouldn’t comment on his large donation to Vaughan Gething’s campaign

It emerged during the leadership contest that Mr Gething had lobbied on behalf of one of Mr Neal’s companies, before his first leadership run in 2018.

In a separate row, Mr Gething found himself having to defend a message he sent during the pandemic, where the then-health minister told colleagues he was deleting texts from a ministerial group chat.

He later sacked Hannah Blythyn, alleging she was the source of the leak to Nation.Cymru (which, perhaps ironically in the circumstances, is partly funded by the Welsh Government [WG]).

Hannah Blythyn was sacked by Vaughan Gething

Opposition parties demanded evidence, which Mr Gething has declined to provide.

Two MSs were ‘off sick’ and this, well, would not have been unhelpful to his opponents.

They were Ms Blythyn, and Lee Waters, the former transport minister who had previously called for the donations at the centre of the main scandal to be returned.

‘I’m big but I still may fail’

The vote is ‘non-binding’ so Mr Gething doesn’t HAVE to go, but it is hard to see him surviving this.

This hoary old phrase “The bigger they come the harder they fall” is certainly true!


The memories of Phil’s decades-long award-winning career in journalism (when commenting on major political stories was always paramount), as he was gripped by the rare disabling condition Hereditary Spastic Paraplegia (HSP), have been released in a major book ‘A GOOD STORY’. Order it now!


Regrettably publication of another book, however, was refused, because it was to have included names.