PRIME MINISTER Theresa May has announced that she plans to hold a snap general election on June 8.
This decision, which will need the backing of Parliament to go ahead, is intended to allow for security and stability following the EU referendum and the recent triggering of Article 50.
Ms May said: “I have just chaired a meeting of the Cabinet, where we agreed that the Government should call a general election, to be held on June 8.
“I want to explain the reasons for that decision, what will happen next and the choice facing the British people when you come to vote in this election.
“Last summer, after the country voted to leave the European Union, Britain needed certainty, stability and strong leadership, and since I became Prime Minister the Government has delivered precisely that.
“Despite predictions of immediate financial and economic danger, since the referendum we have seen consumer confidence remain high, record numbers of jobs, and economic growth that has exceeded all expectations.
“We have also delivered on the mandate that we were handed by the referendum result.”
Speaking to BBC news a few moments ago Labour Leader Jeremy Corbyn MP said:
“I welcome the opportunity to stand up against this government and its failed economic agenda. We want to put a case out there to the people of Britain for a society and economy and a Brexit that works for all.
“We’re going out there to put the case of how this county could be run, how it could be different, how we can have a fairer society for all. That is what we are doing.
“It’s about an economy that works for all.
“We’re challenging the economic narrative which says there needs to be huge cut in public expenditure to pay for the banking crisis of 2008. We say we need to invest. We have massive inequalities between the rich minority and sadly too many people living at the other end of the scale.
“We will take our message to every part of this country. We are campaigning to win this election this is the only thing that matters now. We will give real hope to everyone, and above all give a principle of justice and economic opportunity for everybody.”
Carmarthen West and South Pembrokeshire’s Conservative MP Simon Hart welcomed Ms May’s decision: “As the PM has said the time is now right to provide voters a chance to express a view about a whole range of subjects and to give her the mandate she needs to negotiate the best possible deal for Wales and the UK,” he added.
“I have loved very moment of my time as MP for my local area and will be fighting this election as positively and enthusiastically as ever.”
However, the announcement has been met with caution by the Farmers’ Union of Wales.
FUW President Glyn Roberts commented: “We have long been calling for the creation of a post-Brexit UK agricultural framework and we know discussions between UK and Welsh Government have been frustratingly slow.
“The timing of this election will do nothing to aid progress in establishing a UK framework for agriculture and we therefore urge the Westminster Government not to ignore the critical issues at hand.
“As the independent voice for Welsh farming, the FUW we will of course continue to remind all parties about the importance of the rural economy and why #FarmingMatters and is actively going to engage with candidates about the future of agriculture in the coming weeks.
“The Union will shortly release its own general election manifesto outlining our expectations and will work throughout the campaign to ensure MPs understand that the future of the rural economy must be a national priority, now and in the years to come.”
Motorbike safety campaign launched across Wales
A CAMPAIGN aimed at reducing the risk of motorcycle-related deaths and serious injuries on the roads is underway across Wales.
As the weather improves police see more bikers on the roads, taking advantage of the beautiful routes across Carmarthenshire, Ceredigion, Pembrokeshire and Powys.
Dyfed-Powys Police is urging motorcyclists to ride safely and warns that until October there will be an increased focus as part of the campaign, named Op Darwen.
Superintendent Huw Meredith, Head of Specialist Operations, said: “Motorcyclists have long been identified as particularly vulnerable road users and reducing the number of road deaths and casualties on the roads of Dyfed-Powys is a priority for our Roads Policing Units.
“We have always welcomed motorcyclists from outside our borders to enjoy the magnificent landscape, but they must be aware that Dyfed-Powys Police is doing all it can to ensure our roads are used safely by all, with our Roads Policing Units taking robust action to prevent fatal or serious road traffic collisions on our roads.
“Everyone must take responsibility for their own and others safety on our roads and be aware of their riding and driving manner. Action will be taken against anyone choosing to ride or drive anti-socially, recklessly or illegally on our roads.
“Our officers see far too many tragedies, many preventable. Roads Policing officers will be out in numbers throughout Dyfed-Powys using a combination of education, engagement and enforcement to prevent further tragedies.”
Officers will also be encouraging riders to improve their biking skills by taking part in BikeSafe workshops, which
offer an insight into what can be achieved with further advanced training. The workshops, run by police forces around the UK, use a mix of discussions, on-road observed rides and information videos. They are designed to enhance the skills of all riders who have already passed their tests and are suitable for all abilities, from the most seasoned rider to those returning to biking after a period of absence.
Economy and Transport Secretary Ken Skates praised the campaign: “Our roads continue to be amongst the safest in the world.
“However, the number of motorcyclists being killed or seriously injured is still too high.
“Campaigns like this are a key part of a wider range of measures aimed at making our roads safer and preventing future motorcycling casualties. This holistic approach includes ensuring motorcyclists are prioritised in our road safety funding, supporting Go Safe’s operation of speed cameras and funding local authorities to deliver Bikesafe and other motorcyclist training.”
New housing company to create jobs and boost economy
A NEW local housing company, formed by Carmarthenshire County Council to build affordable homes, will create jobs, apprenticeships, and boost the local economy councillors have said.
The council previously agreed to set up the company, but discussed it at Full Council during a notice of motion aimed at committing support to maximising the benefits to local people and the construction industry.
An original notice of motion put forward my Cllr Jeff Edmunds, of Bigyn ward, to create a local authority workforce to build the homes was rejected in favour of an amended motion by Cllr Linda Evans, executive board member for housing.
She said it was important that local businesses in the construction industry had the chance to benefit from the developments.
“Builders are desperate for work – we want to give local builders an opportunity to expand. We want sustainable benefits to the local housing market and development market.
“We will continue to work with Coleg Sir Gar to create opportunities and skills. We want to keep the Carmarthenshire pound in Carmarthenshire.” She was supported by Cllr Cefin Campbell, executive board member for rural affairs.
“Small businesses are the backbone of the local economy,” he said.
“They have had it hard in recent years because of the economy. Our duty is to support them – if our SMEs prosper then our local economy also prospers.”
‘Race hate’ case will be heard at Crown Court
A BRYNAMMAN man who allegedly called for all Muslims to be ‘forcibly sterilised and banned from preaching their ‘evil creed’ in a social media post will have his case heard at Crown Court.
It’s alleged that 34-year-old Jonathan Jennings posted nine offensive or threatening comments between March and April last year.
These are said to include threatening to ‘Jo Cox’ Labour leader Jeremy Corbyn, hailing a man jailed for kicking a pregnant Muslim woman in the stomach as ‘a National Hero’ and suggesting that bombing mosques and ‘putting Muslim on top of bonfires’ were ‘great ideas’.
It is alleged that he said Hitler was born 100 years too soon, and called for Gina Miller to be ‘hunted down and executed’ over her stance on Brexit.
Appearing at Llanelli Magistrates’ Court wearing a blue military greatcoat, purple shirt, and yellow striped tie, Jennings, of Heol y Gelynen, spoke only to give the court his name, age and address.
Jennings’ solicitor said that he would not be entering a plea at this stage.
The District Judge declined jurisdiction, and Jennings was released on bail until May 18 at Swansea Crown Court, on condition that he does not post or repost anything on social media, or create any new accounts.
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