Former Welsh first minister Rhodri Morgan dies, aged 77

Labour politician was elected as an MP for Cardiff West in 1987

Click to follow
Indy Politics

Former Welsh first minister Rhodri Morgan has died, aged 77.

The Labour politician was a "towering figure", former Welsh secretary Lord Hain said.

The current Welsh Secretary, Tory Alun Cairns, said Mr Morgan as a "significant politician" and a "great servant to Wales".

Current First Minister Carwyn Jones said: "Wales has lost a father figure and a great politician tonight."

He said his thoughts were with Mr Morgan's widow Julie.

Mr Morgan was elected as an MP for Cardiff West in 1987.

He became an AM when the assembly was created in 1999 and became First Minister of Wales a year later.

Lord Hain said: "My deep condolences to Julie and the family on the shock news.

"As first minister Rhodri was both the father of devolution and the father of the nation.

"He did more than anyone to bed down and ensure the new Welsh Assembly gained widespread legitimacy.

"Equally at home both bantering on rugby in a pub or talking economic theory, he was a unique populist intellectual.

"I worked closely with him as secretary of state for Wales to agree the basis for the full law-making powers the Assembly now has.

"He was Welsh through and through and a repository of fascinating facts on everything under the sun.

"A towering figure in every sense whom we will all miss."