A boost for the Conservative Group on Cardiff Council with the return to the fold of two councillors, a married couple, who had left the Party in 2006.
Cllr Jayne Cowan and Cllr Adrian Robson represent Rhiwbina Ward. They have rejoined the Conservatives having previously sat as independents.
“We’re delighted we have been welcomed back so warmly by the group. We’ll do our best and won’t let you down.
“I look forward to working with you all to deliver a Conservative Assembly Member but the following year a Conservative council.”
The Conservative group leader Cllr Dianne Rees said:
“We will work together and they will add tremendously to the Conservative group activity in the council.”
Cllr Cowan said:
“The Labour administration have failed to get to grips with finding alternative, more cost-effective ways of delivering vital services and tackling their own failure to achieve their own savings targets.
“Phil Bale is a leader out of his depth and presides over a dysfunctional Labour group which feels that it can abdicate its important responsibilities by simply blaming everything on a government in Westminster.
“As a result we have had to fight Labour’s proposals to close local libraries, youth facilities, elderly day care centres and play centres across the city which they claimed was the only way to balance the council’s budget.
“He has lost the confidence of the council, wider community, and his own group.
“We promise that we will continue to provide exactly the same level of assistance and support to our residents as we always have provided.
“We will continue to work as a local team alongside our independent ward colleague Eleanor Sanders.
“Everybody knows that the council’s cabinet is one of the weakest in Wales and is not up to the job and yet the Labour party refuses to act, instead leaving local residents to pay the price for Labour’s incompetence.
“That is not acceptable and the only way of protecting local people is for us to step up and join a Conservative group which can present an effective alternative administration after the next elections.”
Cllr Robson added:
“This is not a way to run a city. Cardiff deserves better.
“They continue to waste public money on unnecessary new wheelie bins, A470 bus lanes, and through writing off millions in loans to a cricket club.
“They continue to shell out thousands of pounds to the so-called cooperative council network which advocates planting fruit trees on roundabouts to support local communities.
“You really could not make it up.
“They are meant to be running the capital city of Wales but all the Labour cabinet is interested in is staying in power. They lack respect for other Councillors whether within their own group or opposition members.”
Craig Williams, the Conservative MP for Cardiff North, said:
“I am delighted that Jayne and Adrian have decided to rejoin the Conservatives. They are hard-working and dedicated councillors and we know that they will help the Conservative group challenge Labour’s many inadequacies. We are confident that Adrian and Jayne will help to deliver a positive outcome for Cardiff at the next elections.”
Labour still have a large majority in the City. They have 46 councillors. There are 15 Lib Dems, eight Conservatives, two independents and two Plaid Cymru councillors. (There is a by-election coming up in a ward that was Conservative last time).
On the other hand Labour only took control in 2012 when they made gained 33 seats. The next council elections come in 2017 will all the seats due to be contested.