First Minister dismisses call for independent inquiry into flooding


Heledd Fychan (Image: Plaid Cymru). Afon Sirhywi (Image: Gwalia).

The First Minister has said that he does not agree that there should be an independent inquiry into flooding that affected parts of the country last year.


Drakford said: "The previous Senedd had the opportunity to hear the case for an independent inquiry, and the previous Senedd didn't agree with that and I don't agree with that now either."


His comments were made in response to a question from Heledd Fychan the newly-elected Plaid Cymru MS for Canol De Cymru— an area that was particularly devastated by last year's flooding.


Fychan said that an independent inquiry was important in order to "learn the necessary lessons" and to ensure that "Government investment is rightly targeted rather than being reactive".


Fychan said: "If we truly want to learn the necessary lessons of these flooding events and provide support to those affected, isn't it now time for us to commission an independent inquiry as a matter of urgency into all recent flooding events throughout Wales so that Government investment is rightly targeted rather than being reactive as it is at the moment?"


She also said that people had yet to receive answers as to "what happened and why, and whether there was anything that could have been done differently to prevent this destructive flooding."


Independent Inquiry


Plaid Cymru has previously called for an independent public inquiry into the severe flooding that affected Rhondda Cynon Taf in February and June of last year.


In a report on the flooding, Plaid also called for compensation to be made available to flood victims and for greater investment in flood prevention.


Plaid also criticised Labour's handling of the episode and its reluctance to support an independent inquiry to "get to the heart of what happened."


The decision to conduct an independent inquiry was also debated in the Senedd, after an online petition garnered almost 6,000 signatures.