Carwyn Jones cleared of misleading Assembly after Carl Sargeant death

Posted On: 
18th April 2018

An independent inquiry has cleared Welsh First Minister Carwyn Jones of misleading the assembly over his response to bullying claims in the wake of the death of Labour's Carl Sargeant.

The Welsh First Minister referred himself to an inquiry after amid questions over bullying claims
Credit: 
PA

Mr Sargeant was found dead last November, days after being suspended by Welsh Labour following allegations of inappropriate behaviour.

Following his death, the assembly heard claims of a "toxic" culture of bullying in the Welsh Government dating back to 2014, and the First Minister referred himself to an inquiry after assembly members questioned whether he had misled them by saying no complaints had been raised.

Carwyn Jones calls for inquiry into death of Carl Sargeant

Carwyn Jones: I did nothing wrong over death of Carl Sargeant

The probe, led by independent lawyer James Hamilton, has now concluded that there was no evidence complaints were raised by Mr Sargeant, and said the First Minister did not break the ministerial code in his evidence to AMs.

The report states: "There were allegations made subsequently that there had been a toxic atmosphere or bullying culture in the ministerial floor of Ty Hywel in 2014. I did not find convincing evidence that this was the case."

The inquiry concludes that Mr Jones's statements to the Assembly over bulling were "accurate and truthful, and not misleading"

"Consequently, my conclusion is that, since the answers given by the first minister on 11 November 2014 and 14 November 2017 were accurate and truthful, and not misleading, the first minister did not breach the ministerial code," it adds.

The Welsh Conservatives - who are currently seeking to force the publication of a separate report into whether details of Mr Sargeant's sacking were leaked - have welcomed the inquiry.

But Conservative leader Andrew RT Davies urged the Welsh First Minister not to block the release of the leak report.

"Any continuation to frustrate its publication can only lead to more unhelpful speculation regarding the process and its contents and we would now expect the Welsh Labour Government to publish the leak inquiry report without delay," he said.