Petition launched to stop people who live outside Cymru from standing in Senedd elections


Bae Caerdydd (Image: Gwalia).

A petition has been launched with the aim of changing the law to prevent people who live outside of Cymru from being able to run as candidates in Senedd elections.


The petition has currently amassed more than 2,300 signatures out of the 10,000 required for the issue to be debated in the Senedd.


The petition created by James Davies seeks to introduce a minimum three-year residency requirement for all Senedd candidates.


Davies says, "We believe parachuting of candidates from outside of Wales, into the Senedd, undermines the quality and integrity of Welsh politics and must be prevented."


At least twenty-three candidates running in this year's Senedd election live outside the country.


In the previous Senedd term, the only Member that was known not to live outside Cymru was UKIP's Neil Hamilton, who would commute to the Senedd from his mansion in Wiltshire.


Recently, debate was ignited over the issue of residency when it was announced that the Conservative Party's candidate for Merthyr Tudful and Rhymni, Donna Gavin, had no links with the constituency or with the rest of the country.


Gavin told WalesOnline that her only connections with the area was a period training with the army in Bannau Brycheiniog and the occasional trip over the border to go mountain biking.


Gavin grew up in London and currently lives in Gloucestershire.


Responding to the WalesOnline article at the time, Alun Davies, who is the current Senedd member for the nearby constituency of Blaenau Gwent, said: "She’s a Tory looking to cut her teeth somewhere. It’s a disgrace."


Plaid Cymru MS Rhun ap Iorwerth also reacted at the time, saying: "Am I missing something? Great army career & all...but no mention of why on earth she’d want the be in the Welsh Parliament. No interest in future of Wales."

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