Wales politics

More powers-independence poll call by Plaid's Leanne Wood

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Media captionLeanne Wood said Wales should have its own referendum if Scotland votes for independence

Voters in Wales should be allowed to chose between independence or further devolution in a referendum if Scotland leaves the UK, Plaid Cymru leader Leanne Wood has told the BBC.

She warned Wales would be "subsumed" in an "England and Wales entity", and proposed a "multi-option referendum".

Ms Wood was speaking on the BBC's Question Time programme on Thursday.

Labour MP Nia Griffith said: "I really do think that Leanne is living in some fantasy world."

Scotland's First Minister Nicola Sturgeon is expected to receive the backing of MSPs to ask Westminster for permission for an independence referendum.


Ms Wood told the programme, broadcast from Bangor on Thursday night: "If Scotland becomes independent the UK will no longer exist.

"We will be subsumed in some kind of England and Wales entity.

"How will our voice be heard then, when we're already ignored by the Westminster parliament?

"So I think there should be a multi-option referendum - independence should be included in that."

She also called for an option for the "43% of people in Wales who want more powers, including powers over our economy so that we can actually address some of the problems that we're facing".

Image caption Nia Griffith said decisions needed to be taken at the right level

Dismissing the suggestion, Llanelli MP and Shadow Defence Secretary Ms Griffith said: "I really do think that Leanne is living in some fantasy world.

"Of course people want to be involved in decision-making and what we have to do is we have to try to get the decisions taken at the right level.

"So some things it's appropriate to have at a UK level, other things it's appropriate to have at a Wales or a Scotland level, or at a local authority level."

Policing minister Brandon Lewis said UK ministers were already devolving more powers in the Wales Act, which includes extra control over transport, energy, electoral arrangements and an element of income tax.

'Precious union'

Mr Lewis, Conservative MP for Great Yarmouth, said the process of taking the UK out of the EU could also provide further chances to transfer additional powers to Wales.

"We have said as a government as we repatriate powers from the EU, as we go through Brexit, there will be an opportunity to look at it," he said.

"So I think there is an opportunity there and we are ultimately stronger together."

He called the UK a "precious union" that "we should value".

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