Welsh Assembly has spoken, time for UK Government to listen, says Rhun ap Iorwerth

The National Assembly for Wales has today voted to reject Theresa May’s Brexit Withdrawal Agreement and Political Declaration in a dramatic vote in the Senedd – becoming the first parliament in the UK to do so – and it is time for Theresa May to listen to the voice of Wales, says Plaid Cymru AM Rhun ap Iorwerth.

The Labour Welsh Government had originally tabled its own motion but decided to support the Plaid Cymru amendment which calls to reject the UK Government’s Withdrawal Agreement and Political Declaration, calls for the UK to stay in the European Single Market and Customs Union, and to extend Article 50.

The amended motion passed 34 to 16 with no abstentions.

Plaid Cymru’s amendment calling for a People’s Vote was not agreed, but another amendment did pass outlining the desire to see a general election of a People’s Vote – with an option to remain on the ballot paper – should UK Government not act in line with the agreed amendments.

Following the vote in the Assembly chamber, Mr ap Iorwerth discussed the outcome of the vote, and how Plaid Cymru will continue to campaign for a People’s Vote as it is in the best interests of the people of Wales.

“The Withdrawal Agreement that the UK Government has put together does not act in Wales’ interests, and we will now be making that message clear as a National Assembly for Wales, thanks to amendments table by Plaid Cymru in today’s Brexit debate.

“We in Plaid Cymru are in favour of a People’s Vote, and if we believe in real democracy we should base our decision on whether to leave the European Union on what evidence we have in front of us today.

“Let us ask what the opinion of the people truly is, now that they’re facing this new evidence of what Brexit will look like that has been put in front of them.

“There is nothing wrong with making sure that our understanding of people’s views is as current as possible. Plaid Cymru will continue to press the case for a People’s Vote because that’s what we think is in the best interests of the people of Wales, whether people voted to leave or remain.

“A very important day in the National Assembly for Wales today, but what is important now of course is that UK Government listens.”