MPs told of Gibraltar concerns about Brexit and the future leadership of the UK

Independent MP and leader of Together Gibraltar Marlene Hassan Nahon, accompanied by Executive Party Secretary Kamlesh Khubchand in an assistant role, took part in a series of talks with prominent MPs from three political parties. The MPs were: Michael Gapes, a member of Change UK and MP for Ilford South, Dominic Grieve QC, Conservative politician and MP for Beaconsfield, and Sir Lindsay Hoyle of the Labour Party and MP for Chorley. All three meetings took place on Tuesday.

These meetings, organised by the party and wholly self-funded, were aimed at acquiring first-hand information regarding the Tory leadership race and its potential impact on Brexit negotiations, as well as strengthening ties with the UK political establishment by bringing the all-too-often neglected voice of the Gibraltarians to the table. The meetings were arranged with the knowledge of Government and aligned with Gibraltar’s broader lobbying efforts in Westminster.

Michael Gapes, ex Labour minister and party organiser, now part of the Independents for Change Party and an ardent remainer, predicted a Boris Johnson premiership and a continued Brexit stalemate on the issue of the Irish backstop. Together Gibraltar and Change UK both support the option of a second referendum, and ideas as to how to further this agenda were exchanged and discussed. He had very affectionate words for Gibraltar and its plight, and pledged to support the Gibraltarian agenda in the future.

Dominic Grieve, ex shadow Home Secretary, Attorney General for England and Wales and currently Chair of the Intelligence and Security Committee as well a strong campaigner for remain, expressed his belief that a second referendum is the best possible option for the UK - something Together Gibraltar and the majority of the Gibraltarian community agree with wholeheartedly.

He expressed a profound understanding of the potential negative effects that a bad Brexit outcome would have on Gibraltar, and put forward a view that MPs who express support for Gibraltar while campaigning for a hard Brexit incur into shocking contradictions. He commended the Government of Gibraltar and the community at large for the lobbying efforts thus far, and stressed the need for continued action on this front in order to keep the Gibraltarian agenda present and relevant in public opinion and future political discussions.

Sir Lindsay Hoyle spoke about his role as Deputy Speaker, that is, someone who does not take part in partisan politics and remains completely impartial in the House of Commons. His take, one that is based on a neutral analysis of the facts, is that the only way for Parliament and the EU to save face is a second referendum. He was very supportive of the Gibraltarian agenda and also stressed the need to deploy a strong and coherent lobbying effort in the coming months.

Together Gibraltar will continue to support campaigns aimed at achieving a second referendum, and making the voice of Gibraltarians heard, loud and clear, in all relevant arenas. It will also continue supporting the Government’s efforts on this front, always putting aside partisan interests in the name of the common good.