Tory Welsh secretary broke ministerial code with social media video, says Labour

A Tory cabinet minister has been accused of a blatant breach of the ministerial code after using his government office in Whitehall to film an anti-Labour video that he then posted on social media.

Welsh secretary David TC Davies put the short film on X (formerly Twitter) last week to attack Labour plans to expand the size of the Welsh Senedd and highlight the Conservative party’s opposition to it.

Sources close to Davies confirmed last night that the video had been filmed in his government office, the Wales Office in Whitehall, in direct contravention of the ministerial code, which states: “Ministers are provided with facilities at government expense to enable them to carry out their official duties. These facilities should not generally be used for party or constituency activities.”

In the video Davies said the Welsh Labour government had to decide whether it wanted to spend £120m of taxpayers’ money on more Senedd members or increase the number of nurses, doctors, dentists and teachers, as the Conservatives would do. “I know which side I am on,” he added.

The ministerial code states that exemptions apply only for “official residences”, such as the prime minister’s at 10 Downing Street.

A government source said the minister could not record the film outside his office “for security reasons”, without explaining what those were or why it could not have been made at Conservative party headquarters.

Shadow Welsh secretary Jo Stevens said: “This behaviour needs to be swept away along with this clapped-out Conservative government. Under Labour, the Wales Office will once again focus on and deliver for people across Wales.”

Last month Davies was criticised when he described the shadow education secretary, Bridget Phillipson, as a “disgrace” in a clash over the Rwanda scheme on the BBC’s Question Time programme.

Phillipson had accused the secretary of state for Wales of talking “complete garbage” by claiming Labour had an open doors policy around immigration.

Davies hit back by saying: “You’re a disgrace, Bridget, and your policy is an absolute disgrace.” The Labour frontbencher was heard saying: “So much for standards in public life.”

The Guardian

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