It’s not difficult to come to the conclusion; that since the advent of devolution, that the package of powers we have been given in Wales is second rate when compared to both Scotland and Northern Ireland. With the publication of new legislative proposals (Thursday 22nd January) for further Scottish devolution, a new going-rate for powers has been set and Wales should settle for nothing less that parity with Scotland.
This is a simple matter of basic fairness. Wales is every bit as much a nation as Scotland and we should expect to be treated on the basis of equality. If we settle for second best, then there are also significant consequences for Wales. Scotland will have powers to block fracking for example; Welsh communities will be left to the tender mercy of Westminster. Scotland will have a greater say on how the money it raises is spent while in Wales we will continue to lack the levers to turn around our economy and create jobs.
A recent poll suggested a clear majority agree with Plaid Cymru that our nation should have parity of powers with Scotland. All the other party leaders should join Leanne Wood, Plaid Cymru’s Leader to work to secure the will of the people and a devolution package that respects Wales and gives our people the tools that other nations take for granted.
The status quo or doing nothing is not an option. If we choose that course then the gulf between the strength of our self-government and that of other countries within these islands will only continue to widen and to undermine Wales' position and hindering our ability to act in Wales' interests on a wide range of issues.