THE simmering tensions between Labour and Plaid Cymru in the runup to next week’s local elections exploded into open warfare at Ammanford Town Council on Monday night.

In a blistering salvo, Labour’s Hugh Evans – who is quitting after 20 years at County Hall – accused Plaid of running a “vindictive”


Cllr Evans, 67, also claimed his opponents had spread false rumours that he was about to take a job withGwalia Housing.

“For the record, I’m not seriously ill, I’m not moving to Weymouth and I’ve not been offered a job with Gwalia,” he said.

“The Nationalist party have also wrongly claimed Gwalia will move into Ammanford Town Hall and take over the top offices.

They are getting very vindictive towards candidates.

“I hope to God that this election is not standard. If there is a repeat in four years, well, people need to growup.”

But his comments were immediately condemned by Cllr Deian Harries, chair of Plaid’s Ammanford branch, who pushed Cllr Evans to within six votes in the 2008 electionandis pitted against Labour’s Chris Jones in a straight forward fight for Cllr Evans’ vacant seat this time round.

“What he said has hit me for six,” said Cllr Harries following the meeting. “It’s the first I’ve heard of it. It was awful and obviously aimed at me. What a silly way to end your career.

“People who know me know I’m not like that. I’m big friends with Chris Jones and have always been good friends with Hugh.

“What’s upset Labour is that they know Plaid are guaranteed six seats on Ammanford council.”

The row comes in the week that Kevin Madge, Labour leader at County Hall, claimed the election campaign was the “dirtiest”

he had experienced in 34 years in local politics.

Plaid MP Jonathan Edwards accused Labour of “gutter politics”.

He said: “It’s extremely disappointing that a councillor who has given years of service to his community uses his last act of public duty to attack his political opponent.

“The Labour Party should not be allowed to get away with making such unfounded claims, as retiring Cllr Evans has, without a shred of substance to support it.”