YOUR MP WRITES: Paul Flynn, MP for Newport West
4:03pm Monday 16th December 2013 in News
‘Newport is lovely place. You should go there.’
That’s not always the reaction from strangers when you say that you are from Newport. The words were those of the Polish Foreign Minister Adam Rotfeld at a conference in Warsaw. He urged fellow delegates to visit. His enthusiasm followed the Foreign Minister conference here in 2005. Adam spent his time blissfully at the Celtic Manor and Tredegar House on two sunny summer days. All he saw was world class quality. These magnificent places are as authentic parts of Newport as anywhere else. We excessively stress the negatives. At the NATO summit next year we have another chance to show the world our brilliant facilities and landscape. Let’s indulge. Flaunt and enjoy the best of our city.
Memories are stirred of Newport 1969. The second UK protest against South Africa’s attempt to export apartheid was held here. Contrary to popular opinion, Peter Hain was not demonstrating here, nor in Ebbw Vale or Cardiff. Peter told me that people insist that they carried him off the pitch in Swansea. He wasn’t there either.
The Newport demo was organised by the late John Newnham and the late MEP David Morris. Honourably active too was former Councillor David Hando. At that time anger at apartheid fired up a minority only. It was unanimously denounced in Parliament when Mandela’s memory was honoured.
City analysts Liberem Capital say that the Hinkley Point nuclear power station deal is ‘economically insane’. The electricity price fixed with a French company is at double the going rate, index-linked and guaranteed for 35 years!
This rip-off is only possible by spending £billions of public money in subsidies. They probably break competition rules. Europe is likely to cry ‘Foul’ next week. That could save us from another enormous hike in electricity prices.
Doubts on the truth of crime figures were the main excuse for getting rid of Police Chief Constable Napier. The new chief believes they were accurate. Select committee experts agreed with me that the new Police and Crime Commissioners are under greater pressure than police to fiddle their figures. PPCs are politicians who need to be re-elected. Not much of a slogan –‘Vote for me. I raised crime levels.’
Excitement. It’s almost certainly never happened before. Two Gwent MPs announce that they are about to get married. Not to each other. That’s two weddings in prospect. Can’t wait.
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