Senior Labour MP Veerendra Sharma recalled his roots in Punjab in a forceful speech in the House of Commons to condemn the controversial withdrawal agreement, suggesting that it is the moment “we snuffed out hope” of his grandchildren and their generation.
“This country was built on immigration. I myself came here more than 50 years ago, made a family and a life here, served as a local councillor for over 25 years, and have become a Member of Parliament”.
“But the Prime Minister’s plan for Brexit will denude this nation of who it needs most, so I cannot in good faith vote for a deal that leaves my constituents, young and old, without a brighter looking future”.
“Are my grandchildren and all their generation going to look back at this moment and at the Prime Minister’s deal, and remember it as the moment we snuffed out their hope”, he asked in his speech
Sharma said: “I campaigned for our country to remain in the EU. I believe we are stronger when we work with our neighbours, not when we turn our backs on them. The majority of this House said that leaving the EU would be bad for business, strip protections from workers and leave us isolated in the world”.
“We were not heeded. Many of us here counselled that Article 50 should not have been triggered and that rushing to this momentous step was foolhardy. We were not heeded. We stood in this House and the Prime Minister paid lip service to the requests of honourable members to negotiate to protect key sectors of the economy. We were not heeded”.