Be on your guard against the leaven of the Pharisees, which is hypocrisy. Nothing is covered up that will not be revealed, or hidden that will not be made known. What you have said in the dark shall be heard in the light, and what you have whispered in private rooms shall be shouted from the rooftops.
Jesus of Nazareth – Luke 12:1-3
In September last year I received an email from Chris Franks telling me that a complaint had been made about articles I had written on the subject of the Ynys Môn by-election.
A lot has happened since then which I have not been able to make public before, but am able to make public now. Rather than present it all in one go, I am going to break it down into a series of individual posts, in order to give a sense of how things unfolded over time.
Everything was done by email, so I am publishing the email correspondence in its entirety. I have redacted only personal details such as addresses and phone numbers for obvious, and I hope understandable, reasons.
From: Chris Franks
Sent: Monday, 9 September 2013, 12:35pm
To: Michael Haggett
Dear Mr Haggett
The Membership, Disciplinary and Standards Panel of Plaid Cymru has held an initial meeting to consider a complaint received from a member regarding your Blog postings concerning the Mon By election. The initial procedure is for the Membership, Disciplinary and Standards Panel to determine if there are sufficient grounds to pursue the complaint.
I would confirm that the Panel has decided to appoint a Hearing Panel to investigate this complaint. Shaughan Feakes of Ty Gwynfor has been appointed the investigation officer. Shaughan will contact you directly as appropriate.
You will understand that this matter will be dealt with in the strictest confidence and only the chair of the party is authorised to make any public comment, if at all. My mobile is ----------- if you require clarification regarding the process.
Membership, Disciplinary and Standards Panel of Plaid Cymru
From: Michael Haggett
Sent: Wednesday, 11 September 2013, 3:50am
To: Chris Franks
Cc: Rhuanedd Richards [Chief Executive], Shaughan Feakes, Leanne Wood
Thank you for your email.
You have said that a complaint has been made by a member of the party. I need hardly remind you that under the terms of the constitution no disciplinary action can be initiated against a member unless the complaint has been signed by no fewer than five members of the party. A complaint by one member alone cannot be entertained ... unless that member happens to be the President, Leader of the Party Group in the National Assembly or Party Chair. For the complaint to be valid it would also need to be served on both the Chief Executive and myself. I can confirm that I have not received anything.
Unless or until a valid complaint has been made there are no grounds for investigating anything or appointing a Hearing Panel. So I would advise you and the Membership, Disciplinary and Standards Panel not to be premature and I, for my part, will not consider what you have said to have any relevance to me or my standing in the party unless or until that changes.
However, having made that clear, I would very much welcome answering any criticisms of what I wrote on Syniadau from anyone who wants to take issue with it. Anybody has been able to do that at any time. However I would warn those in positions of responsibility in the party to tread very carefully, for in this matter I have upheld our party, our democratic values and our policies against those in the party who have tried to undermine them. Don't be so foolish as to attempt to take disciplinary action against me when such action would be better directed at prominent members of the party who openly oppose party policy, tell lies about it, and bring our party into disrepute as a result. Better still would be for those in positions of responsibility in the party to follow my lead and try to repair the damage that has been inflicted on us as a party by not being afraid to publicly reaffirm what our policies are.