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Dublin: 18 °C Wednesday 17 July, 2019

UK junior agriculture minister resigns over May decision to allow vote delaying Brexit

Agriculture minister George Eustice sent a letter to May today tendering his resignation.

File photo of George Eustice.
File photo of George Eustice.
Image: PA Archive/PA Images

A BRITISH JUNIOR minister has resigned over a decision by Theresa May to allow a vote on delaying Article 50, which could delay Brexit. 

Agriculture minister George Eustice sent a letter to May today tendering his resignation.

“It is with tremendous sadness that I have decided to resign from the government following the decision this week to allow the postponement of out exit from the EU,” Eustice said.

Since Parliament is now in direct control of events, I want to be free to participate in the critical debate that will take place in the weeks ahead.

Eustice is a Brexiteer and former Ukip candidate who was first elected in 2010. 

He said it had been “an honour” to work in his role and that he had “stuck with the government through a series of rather undignified retreats”, but felt May had been “terribly undermined” by people who weren’t supporting the referendum result. 

“I fear that developments this week will lead to a sequence of events culminating in the EU dictating the terms of any extension requested and the final humiliation of our country,” Eustice said. 

Yesterday, members of parliament voted overwhelmingly in favour of a proposal that could allow Brexit to be delayed. 

The motion, put forward by Labour MP Yvette Cooper, was passed by 502 votes to 20.

May announced on Tuesday that she would give MPs a vote on seeking an extension to Article 50 if the House of Commons fails to pass her Brexit deal in March. 

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Cormac Fitzgerald

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