Constitution Devolution

How is the new First Minister appointed?

Carwyn Jones AM announced his intention to stand down as First Minister at the Welsh Labour Spring Conference in April 2018. The formal campaign to succeed him as leader of the Welsh Labour Party began in September 2018. The result was announced yesterday with Mark Drakeford AM declared the winner.

07 December 2018

Darllenwch yr erthygl yma yn Gymraeg | Read this post in Welsh

Carwyn Jones AM announced his intention to stand down as First Minister at the Welsh Labour Spring Conference in April 2018. The formal campaign to succeed him as leader of the Welsh Labour Party began in September 2018. The result was announced yesterday with Mark Drakeford AM declared the winner.

On Tuesday 11 December Carwyn Jones will formally tender his resignation to the Queen. This will trigger the process in the Government of Wales Act 2006 for the nomination of an Assembly Member for appointment as First Minister. The following events can also trigger the nomination procedures:

  • the holding of a poll at a general election;
  • the Assembly resolving that the Welsh Ministers no longer enjoy the confidence of the Assembly;
  • the First Minister dying or becoming permanently unable to act or to tender resignation; and
  • the First Minister ceasing to be a member of the Assembly, other than on a dissolution (e.g. by resigning from the Assembly).

When one of these events occurs, the Assembly must nominate a First Minister within 28 days.

The Llywydd is expected to open nominations for the new First Minister on Wednesday 12 December, provided that confirmation of Her Majesty’s acceptance of the outgoing First Minister’s resignation has been received by the Welsh Government If only one Member is nominated, that person will be declared the “nominee”. If on the other hand more than one nomination is made, every Member except for the Llywydd and Deputy Presiding Officer, will be given the opportunity to vote for their preferred candidate by roll call.

Once the Assembly has chosen a new First Minister, the Llywydd will recommend him or her for appointment by the Queen.

The current Cabinet Secretaries and Ministers will remain in post until further notice, but the Counsel General will cease to hold office when the new First Minister is appointed.


Article by Alys Thomas, National Assembly for Wales Research Service