Wales politics

Labour government programme 'will show our performance'

Carwyn Jones has said his government will give people the information they need to judge whether the Welsh Government is performing.

The first minister defended a programme for government after opponents said it did not contain targets.

Mr Jones said the programme was a "road map" towards achieving Labour's manifesto for May's assembly election.

It is an attempt to make good a pledge that "delivery" would be his party's watchword during a fourth term.

Opposition AMs complained there was a lack of figures to aim for after Mr Jones said the document would contain "measurable targets".

'Fresh approach'

Unveiling the document to the Senedd on Tuesday, the first minister hailed a "fresh approach" by his minority Welsh Government.

Mr Jones said annual reports - the first will be available next May - would allow people to decide whether the government was meeting big long-term challenges, such as better experiences of healthcare, higher educational achievements and a "robust" economy.

Tuesday's programme offers "indicators" to measure the government's performance between now and the next election in 2016, he said.

Voters "will be able to see those figures year after year and then they can judge".

Mr Jones said each chapter of the programme - arranged according to issues, not government departments - would set out "the actions we will take, how we will judge whether our actions are on track and the indicators we will use to assess progress against the big long-term challenges for improving life for people in Wales".

He said the people of Wales wanted "to see a real improvement in their lives".

"We will commit all our policies, programmes, legislation and funding to deliver those improvements," he said.

Mr Jones said the five headline pledges of Labour's assembly election campaign would take centre stage. They include a commitment to protect front-line spending on schools, easier access to GPs at weekends and evenings, and more apprenticeships and training.

Labour was returned to a fourth successive term in the assembly at May's election, but fell one seat short of an outright majority.

Welsh Liberal Democrat leader Kirsty Williams said the assembly had waited 145 days for a programme that was a "cut-and-paste job" of Labour's manifesto.

She said it was "frankly a joke" for the first minister to make reference to targets.

"There isn't a single figure there to tell us what success looks like," she said.

"There isn't a single target in here that is meaningful.

'In denial'

"It's meaningless, absolutely meaningless and we've waited 145 days for it."

Conservative assembly leader Andrew RT Davies said some aspects of the programme were of concern, as was the track record of some ministers.

Plaid Cymru said Labour was "in denial" about the state of the economy.

Plaid leader Ieuan Wyn Jones said: "This programme of government was an opportunity for this slumbering government to show that the terrible economic conditions have jolted it into action.

"Sadly that opportunity has been missed and the first minister has put his name to further proof of his government's complete lack of action."

More on this story

Related Internet links

The BBC is not responsible for the content of external Internet sites