Mark Drakeford will declare that “we are moving Wales forward”, matching the slogan adopted by Welsh Labour ahead of the Senedd election, in a broadcast airing tonight on ITV Wales at 6.25pm and on BBC One Wales at 6.55pm.
Also broadcasting a Welsh language version on S4C at 6.25pm, the Welsh Labour Party leader and First Minister tells those watching the party political message that “our vision for Wales is bold and ambitious – as it should be”.
“As we have seen more than ever in this past year, ours is a country that has extraordinary capacity to meet the sternest of challenges. To not just match other countries, but to show them the way,” he says. “I know the months ahead will bring difficulties and there will be disappointments.
“But I believe more firmly than ever that Wales does not just stand ready to overcome them – but to use these challenges to build a country that is ready to face the future with confidence – so that we can move Wales forward together.”
Featuring residents from across the devolved nation explaining why they will be voting for the party in the May election, the video focuses on some of the achievements of the Labour administration during Covid and over the last few years.
16-year-old Poppy, who is voting in the elections as a result of Labour changing the law to enfranchise 16- and 17-year olds, says: “Welsh Labour want ours to be the best country in the world to be a young person in.”
“I know they see young people as voices to be listened to, and as citizens with a stake in the future of our country,” the Newport resident tells voters in the short clip.
“I’m excited that the country my grandson will grow up in won’t hide its light under a bushel, or be anybody’s poor relation,” Feroze from Cardiff says. “He’ll grow up in a country that knows just how great it is – and knows that its best days are ahead.”
Joe highlights how Labour guaranteed free school meals last year and is building new colleges and schools, arguing: “Even as they’re dealing with the challenges of today, they’re moving Wales forward to a socially just and sustainable future.”
Welsh Labour ministers announced last year that the government would be guaranteeing that free school meals would continue to be available to eligible pupils in Wales over all school holidays up to and including Easter 2021.
“This pandemic has shown how Wales can lead the way – trusting those institutions which understand the communities they serve. Welsh Labour have told it like it is,” Eleri says.
“They’ve kept people safe and taken the difficult decisions necessary – even when it was unpopular,” the Llangollen resident adds in the short message airing across the country this evening.
“People like Poppy, Feroze, Joe and Eleri make Wales the country I am proud to lead,” Welsh Labour leader Drakeford explains in the video.
“It is stories like theirs that inspire me and my government every day as we chart a path together out of this pandemic, determined to use the lessons we have learnt to move Wales forward.”
Drakeford set out the grounds on which Labour will fight the Senedd elections in a speech to the party’s ‘Spring Forward’ event last week, with a programme that he argued puts fighting the climate crisis “at the heart of everything we do”.
Adopting the new strapline “Moving Wales Forward”, he set out a plan to create a greener nation on a platform supporting green jobs, taking action to ban single use plastics, building low-carbon affordable homes and creating a new National Forest.
The first Welsh Political Barometer poll of 2021 showed Labour ahead in the contest for the Senedd last month, with 34% of voters backing the Welsh Labour Party. This was down four points on the previous research carried out in October last year.