A POLITICAL party dedicated to scrapping to Welsh Assembly has announced it will run a candidate in the forthcoming Newport West by-election.

The Abolish the Welsh Assembly Party has announced Richard Suchorzewski will stand for the seat, which has been vacant since the death of Paul Flynn on Sunday - the first time the party has run in a General Election.

The announcement follows a poll of supporters on the party's Facebook page on whether they should stand a candidate in the by-election - in which 87 per cent backed the idea.

Mr Suchorzewski, 55, who is also the party's chairman, is originally from Ystrad Mynach and has a background in banking and wealth management and today works as a business consultant in Barry.


Surprising jump in support for party dedicated to abolishing the Welsh Assembly

Newport West MP Paul Flynn has died aged 84

Newport West MP Paul Flynn gained a reputation as a man who never minced his words

He said: "We have no idea how many votes we would get in this area.

"We wouldn't expect many because, let's be truthful, the race is essentially going to be between the Tories and Labour.

"We are not pretending for one minute we are going to win the seat and we are going to represent the party in Westminster - we are just trying to make people aware of our message."

Mr Suchorzewski was previously a member of the Conservative Party and ran for Swansea East in the 1997 General Election - although he had to step aside before polling day due to time pressures. He later defected to Ukip, becoming chairman of Ukip Wales, and ran for the Vale of Glamorgan in the 2005 General Election, coming fifth. He also ran against Nigel Farage for Ukip leader in 2006, and left the party after he was defeated.

South Wales Argus:

Newport West MP Paul Flynn, who died on Sunday

He said he saw the Welsh Assembly as an unnecessary extra layer of politics, and believes the money used to fund it would be better used elsewhere.

He said: "You've got town councillors, county councillors, MPs, MEPs, AMs - do you really need all those tiers? I would argue no.

"If you've got MPs you can use them to debate the issues in Wales.

"They do the work with the Welsh Affairs Committee - they can determine most of the policies of Wales.

"The cost of one term of an Assembly would give you another hospital - that's the way of looking at it."

The Abolish the Welsh Assembly Party ran candidates in the 2016 Assembly Election, winning 4.4 per cent of the overall vote - but this was not enough to secure it a seat in any region.

But a poll in December showed the party would win a regional seat in North Wales and another in Mid and West Wales.

Labour has selected Ruth Jones as its candidate, while leader of Newport's Conservative group Cllr Matthew Evans will stand for his party.

Meanwhile, Jonathan Clark will run for Plaid Cymru and the Green Party has selected its deputy leader Amelia Womack.

Ukip has also said it will field a candidate.

No date for the by-election has yet been announced.