Wales politics

Flynn: Being Labour's Shadow Welsh Secretary a 'zero-hours job'

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Media captionNew Labour Shadow Welsh Secretary Paul Flynn jokes in the House of Commons that his job has "zero pay, zero hours" and can end at any time.

Labour's new shadow Welsh secretary has poked fun at his promotion to Jeremy Corbyn's frontbench.

Paul Flynn said he was doing a "zero-contract job, zero-pay job and zero-hours job which could end at any moment".

The Newport West MP was appointed as Labour's spokesman on Welsh affairs after Mr Corbyn faced a revolt by his shadow cabinet.

Mr Flynn was speaking in a Commons debate on the Wales Bill.

He took over from his predecessor Nia Griffith, MP for Llanelli, who resigned in June. Mr Flynn is also serving as shadow leader of the house after the post was vacated by Rhondda MP Chris Bryant.

He said Ms Griffith and her former deputy, Susan Elan Jones, were "on a temporary respite which I'm sure will last for days".

"But I've got this job," he said.

"It's not the best job I've ever had. It's a zero-contract job, zero-pay job and zero-hours jobs which could end at any moment."

He said "the tortuous birth pangs of devolution in Wales have gone on and on".

Previous legislation on devolution was "grudging" because parliament was "neurotically power retentive".

Now, however, he said there was a desire from all parties for "a good bit of legislation that will give the assembly and government in Wales more stability and more durability".

Legal jurisdiction

For the government, Wales Office minister Guto Bebb rejected calls from Plaid Cymru to create a separate legal jurisdiction for Wales - something the Welsh government has also proposed.

The single jurisdiction with England "has served Wales very well", he said.

"The government is firmly of the view that the most effective, efficient and consistent way to administer justice is under a single legal jurisdiction," Mr Bebb added.

The bill will make the assembly permanent and shows devolution is "part and parcel of our nation's constitutional fabric", he added.

The bill would give the assembly new powers, including over energy and elections. It also grants the Welsh government some control over income tax, without a referendum.

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