North Wales Police and Crime Commissioner Arfon Jones has confirmed the appointment of his deputy.

The Police and Crime Panel refused to support the recruitment of social worker Ann Griffith during a meeting in Conwy.

They acknowledged Mr Jones was legally entitled to make the appointment but were unhappy the role had not been advertised.

Another concern was that Ms Griffith was unable to say at the meeting she would be standing down as a councillor next May.

She has now revealed she will not be seeking re-election so that she can concentrate full-time on her new job as deputy commissioner.

Mr Jones has written to the panel informing them of his decision.

Ms Griffith, from Anglesey, said: “The Police and Crime Commissioner, elected with an overwhelming majority, has expressed his wish for me to accept the role of Deputy and I am grateful for his unwavering support.

“I am also encouraged by the overwhelming support given to me by other people, including professionals in the field of criminal justice and social care. Most important of all has been the support and encouragement of the general public.

“The panel was a disappointing experience but I have learnt lessons from it.  I have heeded the panel’s advice and decided to stand down from my role as an Anglesey county councillor at the next election.

“I bring over 30 years’ of experience working at the sharp and strategic ends of social services, care for children and vulnerable adults. I am also experienced in local government and the challenges that brings.

“I believe I can make a positive and constructive contribution to the efforts of chief officers in making North Wales an even safer place for us all to live. I am eager to get on with what is a very serious job.

“We now need to move forward as a team to help ensure North Wales Police is the best it can be for our people and I shall use my skills and experience in this endeavour. I am ready for the challenge ahead.”

According to Mr Jones, he was looking for a deputy with a specific set of skills and Ms Griffith fitted the bill perfectly.

He said: “It was also important to choose somebody with the same values and, like most other commissioners elected as a party political candidate, I have chosen somebody with a similar view of the world. It would not make sense to do otherwise and the fact that she is a Welsh speaking woman from Anglesey with strong links to south Gwynedd also provides a good balance in terms of gender and geography.

“My Chief Executive Officer was involved throughout this process. He met my chosen candidate and was entirely satisfied that she had the background and experience to fulfil the role of my Deputy.  If he had any concerns to the contrary he would have raised these with the Panel directly as required of him as my Monitoring Officer.

“I was disappointed the panel did not agree with my choice, but the legislation is perfectly clear and unequivocal on this matter. The final decision about appointing a deputy is that of the commissioner.

“Having said that, I considered the panel’s views carefully and took them into account before reaching my decision to continue with Ann’s appointment.

“I remain confident that Ann is more than qualified to fulfil this important role and I am sure the panel will in time come to see the benefits of having her as my deputy and that she will serve with distinction and great commitment.

“Ann has confirmed she will be standing down as an Anglesey county councillor at the next election and will be working full-time as my deputy from then on.

“Her professional and personal attributes are ideal to carry out the policies for which I was given a mandate by the people of North Wales when I was elected with a substantial majority in May.

“Having identified the right person for the job, it would have been a waste of public money to run an expensive recruitment campaign just for the sake of it.

“One of my major priorities as police and crime commissioner is to concentrate on young people and how to keep them out of the criminal justice system so they are not criminalised unnecessarily.

“Ann has the perfect background and skills to take this issue forward so that we can help create a better future for our young people which will reduce the number of crimes and therefore reduce the number of victims across North Wales.

“She has 30 years’ experience working as a social worker, with both vulnerable adults and children, 10 of them when she was employed by the NSPCC, and she has worked with North Wales Police on child abuse investigations, chaired child protection conferences and children in care reviews as well as managing Safeguarding Children Boards.”