AN INVESTIGATION into claims of bullying within the Welsh Government cabinet following the death of former minister Carl Sargeant must be held urgently, the leader of the Welsh Conservatives has said.

Following the death of the ex-minister on Tuesday, November 7, his former colleague Leighton Andrews, who served in the cabinet between 2009 and 2013 and again between 2014 and May 2016, spoke out about “minor bullying, mind-games, power-games, favouritism, inconsistency of treatment to different ministers, deliberate personal undermining on occasion”.

And today leader of the Welsh Conservatives Andrew RT Davies wrote to the first minister calling for an investigation into the claims.

In the letter he said: “In the aftermath of Tuesday’s tragic news there has been widespread grief and palpable anger.

“You will be aware of the accusations currently being levelled against you, many from within your own party, but none more public and strident than those of your former colleague in government, Leighton Andrews.

“In your press conference yesterday you alluded to the possibility of an independent inquiry into your handling of Carl Sargeant’s dismissal from the Welsh Government cabinet and the allegations which led to this decision.

“Indeed, you went as far as to say you would welcome the scrutiny.

“In the spirit of transparency and if confidence is to be restored in this process, I believe it is of the utmost important to the family that you confirm today that this will now proceed in earnest.

“It is also paramount that a separate independent inquiry takes place into the allegations of bullying with Mr Andrews, a former cabinet minister, has said existed within your government, of which you are alleged to have been aware but failed to address.

“You will agree with me that an allegation of this seriousness deserves investigation from, in the first instance (permanent secretary of the Welsh Government Shan Morgan), and then an impartial third party.

“I have written to the permanent secretary today asking her to investigate these allegations and I ask you to refer these as a matter of urgency.”

The Welsh Government has been contacted for comment.