Clwyd South's Senedd member has blasted the Westminster government's 'sickening' decision to cut to Universal Credit, and says it will leave a £6.5m-a-year black hole in his constituency.

Ken Skates, the former Welsh Government economy minister, said a total of 6,260 households claiming Universal Credit or Working Tax Credits in Clwyd South will be £1,040 a year worse off.

He said the cut of the vital benefit is down to a lack of a 'moral vacuum' in the government and wants it reversed.

Mr Skates said: “I am one of many, many people who has called on the UK Government to reverse this cut.

"Some have asked Tory MPs to vote with their conscious, but it has been clear for some time that there is a moral vacuum at the heart of this Conservative government.

“Every MP who voted to take more than £1,000 a year from some of the poorest people in our society is complicit in making the lives of millions of people even more difficult.”

Mr Skates said 2,668 of people affected in Clwyd South – around 41 per cent – are in employment.

He added: “There are also 4,749 children living in households in Clwyd South which are in receipt of Universal Credit whose parents are now going to be worse off. It’s sickening – and it’s ideological.

“This move will leave £6.5m-a-year black hole in Clwyd South – so much for ‘levelling up’.”

Mr Skates added that the Welsh Labour Government, along with the UK's other devolved administrations, had urged the Secretary of State for the Department of Work and Pensions to think again – but their pleas have 'fallen on deaf ears'.

Last month Mr Skates and Lesley Griffiths, Wrexham's Senedd member, called on the UK Government to ‘show some humility’ after it emerged their constituencies would be among the hardest hit in Wales.

Mr Skates added: “As Lesley said recently, this is the largest reduction to the basic rate of social security since the Second World War.

"It has become more clear than ever that Boris Johnson and his Tory lapdogs even begrudge normal people the crumbs from their table.”