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Newport City Council leader to become next police and crime commissioner for Gwent 

Jane Mudd Leader (Pic: Newport City Council)

NEWPORT City Council leader Jane Mudd is in the running to be the next police and crime commissioner (PCC) for Gwent.

Cllr Mudd took over as leader of the local authority in 2019, after her predecessor Baroness Wilcox joined the House of Lords.

Welsh Labour confirmed Cllr Mudd’s candidacy on Thursday November 16.

The next PCC elections will likely be held in May 2024.

Cllr Mudd told the Local Democracy Reporting Service she was “delighted” to have been selected as her party’s candidate for next year’s election.

“In the meantime I continue to work with my administration to deliver our Labour commitments to the people of Newport,” she added.

Police and crime commissioners are appointed to oversee police forces and hold chief constables to account. Current Gwent commissioner Jeff Cuthbert has been in post since 2016 but has signalled his intention to step down at the end of his current term.

The former Labour politician served as the Assembly Member for Caerphilly in the Senedd between 2003 and 2016.

Cllr Mudd, who is from Newport, led the city’s Welsh Labour contingent to victory in the 2022 local government elections, when the party retained control of the council.

A Welsh Labour announcement on X (formerly Twitter) on Thursday read: “Llongyfarchiadau [congratulations] to Jane Mudd who has been selected as Welsh Labour’s Police and Crime Commissioner candidate for Gwent.”

The announcement was followed by messages of support from other Labour figures, including Newport East MP Jessica Morden, who wrote that Cllr Mudd would be a “brilliant PCC for Gwent”.

Fellow Newport city councillor Emma Stowell-Corten wrote she was “so proud” of Cllr Mudd and “can’t wait to get campaigning”.

But there was some criticism, too.

Michael Enea, a Conservative campaigner from Newport who stood for election in the 2022 city council election, wrote on his Pointy Finger blog that Cllr Mudd’s candidacy was a “reward for failure”.

He claimed the council leader “would be leaving our city in a mess” because of Newport reportedly having the “highest number of empty vacant shop units of any town or city in the UK”, according to a study.

Newport City Council has been approached for comment.