05 April 2017
Sammy Wilson, along with a number of Conservative members, has walked out of the final consideration of the report by the Brexit Committee on leaving the European Union.
DUP Parliamentary Spokesman on Education, Treasury and the Department of Work & Pensions.
Mr Wilson, who is a member of the Committee, said he was disappointed that despite Westminster conventions that Committees would always seek, as far as possible, to reach some agreement when issuing reports on inquiries, the Remain contingent on the Brexit committee seemed hell bent on producing a partisan report.
The East Antrim MP said, “Despite considerable evidence that Brexit will produce benefits for the UK economy and political system, the report is totally negative, emphasising only the speculation that in certain circumstances there could be negative consequences for some sectors of the economy.
The report was selective in the sources which were quoted, emphasising the views of the most pro-European witnesses and as such gave a skewed and false picture of the evidence which was collected.
It is significant that even the process of producing the report where there should have been a general discussion about its content, the evidence which is going to be selected and the format did not take place on this occasion.
In relation to Northern Ireland it repeats the nationalist line of a hard border, a possible breakdown of the peace process and all the other unsubstantiated nonsense which we have been subjected to over the last year.
It is very unusual for nearly half the Committee to absent itself from discussions on the final draft, especially since most MPs value the work of committees and jealously guard their role. Yet in this case, four former Ministers did not attend, which speaks volumes for the anger which this report, the way it was formed and its contents were decided upon.
I remain optimistic that, in the words of the Foreign Secretary, leaving the EU will be “magnificent for Britain”.