Welsh Affairs

Part of Business of the House – in the House of Commons at 3:50 pm on 26th February 2009.

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Photo of John Smith John Smith Labour, Vale of Glamorgan 3:50 pm, 26th February 2009

Of course I agree with that.

St. Athan has been a huge success story for Wales and for Welsh politics. We won the bid because we were united across the parties and because—let us be clear about this—ours was the best bid. However, I must sound a rather disconcerting note this afternoon. The Command Paper was presented to the House on Tuesday, but—I have given notice of this to the hon. Gentleman involved—it was blocked. An obscure procedural motion was used on Tuesday on a point of order to block the contingent liability of £40 million. The process cannot be stopped, but the effect of what was done on Tuesday could be to delay a recession-busting project that is vital for our country.

I am sure that every Welsh Member of this House will condemn Mark Pritchard. I understand why he objects to the scheme: because he lost the bid. I understand his protesting, but what is reckless and unacceptable is his bid to block the progress of the scheme. It is important that we move ahead with the planning in May. I call on all hon. Members to condemn his action. I am afraid that I must say to Conservative Members in particular: for goodness' sake, bring some influence to bear on him, because he is delaying a vital project.

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