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Monday, 6 April 2015

Mebyon Kernow barred from BBC SW election debate

Mebyon Kernow (MK) has formally objected to the decision of BBC South West to exclude Mebyon Kernow - the Party for Cornwall from its upcoming Question Time style election debate planned for late April.

The BBC has informed Mebyon Kernow that the event will take place at the University of St Mark and St John in Plymouth and the panel will have a representative from the following parties: Conservative, Labour, Liberal Democrat, Green and United Kingdom Independence Party (UKIP).

Like the five main parties, invited to the debate, Mebyon Kernow are standing candidates right across Cornwall but have also been denied a Party Election Broadcast (PEB) by the BBC.

Commenting Mebyon Kernow Leader Cllr Dick Cole said: "We consider it unjust and intrinsically undemocratic that MK – standing in all six seats in Cornwall – will once again to be denied fair and equal access to the media. A total of six political parties will be contesting all Cornish seats and we therefore also consider it unjust that it is only Mebyon Kernow that will be denied the opportunity to take part in an election debate for the ‘South West,’ at which the other five will be represented."

The Party for Cornwall has also pointed out that a seven-way leaders’ debate - broadcast across the whole of the UK - which included representatives of both Plaid Cymru and the SNP. Mebyon Kernow say it is therefore "frankly ridiculous" to exclude Mebyon Kernow from a debate which the BBC would broadcast in the the "South West" area only.