The first Plenary meeting of the Sixth Senedd will take place at 3.00pm on Wednesday, 12 May 2021.
The first order of business for the 60 newly elected Members of the Senedd will be to elect a Presiding Officer (Llywydd) and Deputy Presiding Officer, followed by nominations for a First Minister if the Senedd resolves to do so.
The meeting will be held in a hybrid format. In line with current Coronavirus regulations, 20 Members can be present in the Siambr, with the remaining 40 Members joining online from their offices in Ty Hywel.
The secret ballots for electing the Presiding Officer and Deputy will be paper ballots. Voting will take place in the Senedd building, in a socially distanced manner.
A full meeting agenda will be published on the Senedd website and the meeting will be broadcast live on Senedd TV.
Process for electing Presiding Officer and Deputy
At the first Plenary meeting, on Wednesday 12 May, the Senedd must first elect a Presiding Officer (Llywydd) followed by the election of the Deputy Presiding Officer.
This must take place within 21 days of the election (according to regulations set out in the Welsh Elections (Coronavirus) Act 2021).
The procedures for electing both offices are identical and are outlined below:
- The Chair invites nominations.
- A nomination must be seconded by a Member who does not belong to the same political group as the Member nominating.
- If there is only one nomination, the Chair will propose that the Member nominated be elected. If there are objections, a secret ballot will take place. If there are no objections, the Member is elected.
- If there is more than one nomination, a secret ballot will take place. If two Members have been nominated, the Member who secures the greatest number of votes cast in the ballot is elected.
The Chair (previous Presiding Officer if not a candidate or Clerk of the Senedd) will announce the result of the election to the Senedd. The Member elected as Presiding Officer will take the chair for any remaining items of business, including the election of the Deputy Presiding Officer which will follow immediately after.
When electing a Deputy, the rules state that both cannot be from the same political group. One must be a Member from a political group which has an executive role (i.e. in government) and the other from a political group which is not in government.
Process for Nomination of the First Minister
The Senedd must nominate a Member for appointment as First Minister within 28 days of a Senedd election. This process can take place once the Presiding Officer and Deputy have been elected.
The Senedd will be invited by the Presiding Officer to agree that nominations take place. If any Member objects, a vote will be called. Nomination proceedings will only take place if a majority of Members voting agree. The procedure is outlined below:
- The Presiding Officer invites nominations.
- If there is only one nomination, the Presiding Officer will declare that Member to be the nominee.
- If there is more than one nomination, Members will be asked to vote for their preferred nominee, by roll call.
- If two Members have been nominated, the Member who secures the greatest number of votes cast will be declared the nominee. If more than two Members have been nominated, the Member who secures more votes than are cast for all other candidates will be declared the nominee.
The Presiding Officer will announce the result to the Senedd. The Presiding Officer will recommend to Her Majesty that the Member nominated by the Senedd be appointed as First Minister.