Link to this page: http://www.socialistparty.org.uk/issue/200/8460
Socialist Party Wales prepare election challenge
TWO MEMBERS of the Socialist Party in Wales are standing as candidates at the forthcoming general election. Alec Thraves and Dave Bartlett will be standing in Swansea West and Cardiff South and Penarth respectively as Welsh Socialist Alliance candidates, which was established by Socialist Party Wales over three years ago.
ALEC THRAVES is secretary of Socialist Party Wales. He has been long associated with the Swansea West constituency. When Militant supporters (the forerunners of the Socialist Party) were members of the Labour Party in the 1980s, Alec stood for the nomination as Labour candidate in Swansea West against the right-wing incumbent MP Alan Williams twice, narrowly failing on the first occasion in 1981.
During that period Swansea West became of national significance in the witch-hunt against Militant supporters in the Labour Party.
Alec has been an active member of the engineers' union for over 30 years, and has held many positions in the union as well as Swansea trades council. He is a regular thorn in the side of the right wing of the Welsh trade union movement at the Wales TUC.
Alec has stood as a socialist candidate for Swansea West in the Welsh Assembly elections.
DAVE BARTLETT is branch secretary of Cardiff Socialist Party branch and like Alec has been involved in the Welsh labour movement for over two decades.
During the 1970s Dave was one of a number of Militant supporters in Cardiff South Labour Party who challenged the policies of the sitting MP, right winger and then Labour prime minister Jim Callaghan.
As well as being an active leader of the anti-poll tax campaign in South Wales, Dave has been more recently the leader of a community campaign which tried to prevent New Labour from closing Cardiff Royal Infirmary.
Both Dave and Alec will not only be challenging the right-wing policies of New Labour but also those of Plaid Cymru, the so-called party of Wales, who despite trying to put on a more leftward face than New Labour have presided over cuts and redundancies in South Wales councils they control.
Dave said: "Plaid were elected as a protest in Rhondda Cynon Taff on the promise they would close the Nantyfyllon tip and save council jobs and services. Yet, the tip still remains open and council jobs and services continue to disappear."
If you want to help the campaign of Socialist Party Wales and the Welsh Socialist Alliance then phone 029 20635783/01792 476246. Or email: socialist firstname.lastname@example.org.
Swansea election meeting
Wed 25 April
Hear: Dave Nellist, Alec Thraves
Details Tel: 01792 476 246.
In The Socialist 6 April 2001: