Wales politics

Education Minister Huw Lewis to quit assembly at election

Huw Lewis

Education Minister Huw Lewis has announced he will stand down from the assembly at May's election.

Mr Lewis has been AM for Merthyr Tydfil and Rhymney since the first assembly elections in 1999.

On Friday, he said that "nothing is forever" and he wanted to spend more time with his family.

A former teacher, he took over as education minister following the resignation of Leighton Andrews in 2013.

He had previously been culture minister, and stood unsuccessfully for the Welsh Labour leadership in 2009.

Announcing his decision, Mr Lewis said it had been an "incredible privilege and honour" to represent the community in which he grew up.

He said: "Nothing is forever. I became an AM at the age of 35 and I feel now is the time to move on - for me and the constituency. I'm looking forward to seeing more of my family and seeking out fresh challenges."

First minister Carwyn Jones said: "Huw has that rare quality for a modern politician of wearing his heart on his sleeve.

"He's always fought hard for the causes he believes in, and he's done great work to help regenerate and transform his home constituency."

His decision follows that of nine other Labour AMs who are standing down.

These include presiding officer Rosemary Butler, Keith Davies, Edwina Hart and Gwenda Thomas.

The others are Christine Chapman, Jeff Cuthbert, Janice Gregory, Gwyn Price and Sandy Mewies.

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