WHEN he stood down from the Assembly in 2003, Dafydd Wigley's main reason was not wanting to tread on the toes of his successor as Plaid president, Ieuan Wyn Jones.
Asked how things had changed to make him contemplate a comeback, he said, "It's a different situation now. Inevitably, when you are a new leader your predecessor's shadow has an effect. But by now Ieuan has had enough time to establish himself. He is one of those in the party who has been pressing me to stand, and that's a factor I have borne in mind."
Dafydd Wigley on his own health:
"I have undergone major health checks. On Friday I took the same sophisticated stress test that Itook six years ago before deciding to step down from the partyleadership. This time I have been given the all-clear. I have delayed making my announcement until now because I didn't want to be in a position where I had said I wanted to stand, only to withdraw for health reasons."
Dafydd Wigley on his current relations with other senior party figures:
"They are fine. I see Dafydd Iwan (Plaid's current president) a bit - we live in the same village and I'm chairman of his party branch. I see Dafydd El (Assembly Presiding Officer Lord Elis-Thomas) from time to time. He has also been encouraging me to return. I've had several chats with Ieuan, and John Dixon (Plaid's national chairman) relayed to me the feeling that 95% of the party would support my return. I've trodden on a few toes from time to time, so I wouldn't expect support from absolutely everyone."
Dafydd Wigley on a role in government:
"I would relish the challenge of becoming Assembly Finance Minister after next year's election. I believe very strongly that there should be a finance committee to oversee all spending. At present the budget is drawn up behind closed doors, which is against the spirit of open government. There should be more rigour and more scrutiny."
Dafydd Wigley on the Welsh economy:
"It's absolutely essential that we encourage entrepreneurialism, especially in young people and in social enterprises.
"I am extremely concerned about the risk averse nature of the present Assembly Government, which is likely to get even worse after the abolition of the WDA and the Wales Tourist Board. Getting decisions takes a long time and is very frustrating given that Wales is in competition with other places that do not have the same approach. I was involved with a company that wanted to develop a fibre optic network in North Wales, but three of the five investors pulled out because of Assembly Government delays. Every decision takes a long time because no one wants to take a risk that they may get it wrong - but that puts Wales at a serious economic disadvantage."
Dafydd Wigley on Rhodri Morgan:
"On a personal level I like Rhodri - it's difficult not to. I thought his performance on the day of the Senedd opening was excellent. But new ideas aren't coming through - he has been singularly unwilling to refresh his own government, and he has put his foot in it a few times, as with his recent failure to say where he stood on Iraq. I would have thought that by next year, when he will have had seven years in charge, it would be appropriate for the Labour Party to move on and get another leader."
Dafydd Wigley on his three years out of politics:
"There have been frustrations. I'm one of those sad cases who sometimes tunes in to S4C's coverage of Assembly debates, and there have been times when I have been frustrated at not being there, particularly during meetings of the economic development committee. Sometimes the frustration of not being there has been greater than the frustrations you experience when you are there."