General

Shadow minister Tulip resigns from UK’s labour frontbench over BREXIT

DHAKA, Jan 27, 2017 (BSS) - Bangladeshi origin British shadow minister Tulip Siddiq has resigned from the Labour frontbench over BREXIT saying voting to start the process of leaving the EU would be a betrayal of her north London constituents, UK's mass circulation the Guardian reported today.

"Voting to start the process of leaving the EU would be a betrayal of her north London constituents, three-quarters of whom voted to remain in the EU," the newspaper quoted her saying in a letter to Labour Jeremy Corbyn.

Tulip, Bangabandhu's granddaughter, said she could not reconcile herself to the party's three-line whip to vote for triggering article 50.

"Leaving the European Union presents enormous uncertainty for my constituents, with most believing that the disadvantages of leaving outweigh any potential benefits. Many still don't have firm guarantees that their residential rights will be protected after Brexit," Tulip wrote in her resignation letter.

She added: "I have always been clear - I do not represent Westminster in Hampstead and Kilburn (constituency), I represent Hampstead and Kilburn in Westminster."

Tulip said she felt that the most effective place for me to counter Theresa May's hard Brexit is from the backbenches" adding that she had real concerns about giving the government the nod to proceed with leaving the EU without guarantees on membership of security agencies, environmental or employment rights.

Daughter of Sheikh Rehana and niece of Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina, Tulip, said she had made the final decision to resign after Corbyn confirmed to the shadow cabinet on Thursday morning that Labour MPs would be expected to back the article 50 bill and a three-line whip would be imposed.

"I do not support the triggering of article 50 and cannot reconcile myself to the frontbench position," she wrote in her letter to Corbyn.

Tulip was first elected in May 2015 with a majority of 1,138, and appointed to the Labour frontbench in Corbyn's reshuffle following his reelection in September.

About 75 percent of Tulip's constituents voted to remain in the EU referendum. Her Hampstead and Kilburn seat is a tight three-way marginal and in 2010 her predecessor, Glenda Jackson, had the smallest majority in the country, with just 42 votes more than her Conservative rival.

Source: Bangladesh Sangbad Sangstha (BSS)