What It Was Like In The EU Parliament On Brexit Eve

What It Was Like In The EU Parliament On Brexit Eve


(crowd singing) – This whole kind of episode for over the last three years, the only comparison I can make is a terminal illness. You get your first diagnosis, that was, like the referendum result. – The UK has voted to
leave the European Union. – And then, we were hoping, we were trying anything to get to a point
where the British public could say this isn’t
necessarily what we want. So that’s like all of the treatment. And then with a terminal illness, there comes a realisation, – So the ayes have it, the ayes have it. (cheering) – That the inevitable’s gonna happen. (applauding) (soft music) – I don’t actually have that much to pack, because from the outset
there was a risk that we could’ve been here
for a very short time. So I never really settled. From the outset, we were consumed by trying to get that first extension. So yeah, I don’t have much stuff, so that makes it slightly easier. Can see our sign for our farewell party. Well this is clearly a
very historic moment, both for the UK and the rest of the EU. It’s a massive deal for the EU, that there is a member state
that is leaving this block and that prompts some questions for the EU as well as
to how that situation was able to arise in the first place. And for the UK, I mean
the big question now is, where we’re going to place
ourselves in the world. – A plan that I had, when I first started, it’s quite ridiculous if I say so. Despite his initial negative experience as an MEP, Majid is
still highly ambitious, he has a three-point plan, one, stop Brexit, I failed at that. Two, dismantle the EU,
even if I have to burn down the house to rebuild it,
that way every citizen in the EU from Bradford to Barcelona will feel like they own the EU, and are represented by it. Three, smash the far-right so hard that when the likes of
Salvini, Le Pen, Farage and Orban go to sleep in
their comfortable beds, the one person who will
keep them awake at night is a black Muslim refugee. How you guys doing? – I mean it’s, sad. – Yeah, these are our Irish
colleagues, they’ll be staying. (laughing) – But we’ll miss our British colleagues. – Yeah and British MEPs
really contributed a lot to the European Parliament, and also the European Parliament is going to be a lot more whiter place. Because the most diverse delegation was the British delegation. I think with the British
delegation it was at 4% and people of colour now,
there’s gonna be a lot less and if you really want a parliament that really wants to tackle equality, and represent people, it
needs to really reflect the people it represents and currently, current budget is now 750,
100, torn up in one day. – Before we actually started as parliamentarians we
had to get signed up and I couldn’t get over the kind of, opulence of the place and the sense that we were being treated as though we were kind of, really important people. And in view of the fact that most people in the UK don’t know who their MEPs were, it made me realise that who had all the trappings of power without the power because you’re not legislators here, so that was my first impression. – You know we’re still getting casework, the last week before Brexit, people are still emailing, asking MEPs to do things for them. Some angry emails saying, “Why haven’t you done this yet?” “There’s not a lot of time, you know?” There’s not necessarily
a lot of understanding of the human side of
Brexit and what it means, that we’re human beings
and we’re trying to deal with all of this as well. I don’t, I never set out to be an MEP, that wasn’t my ambition when I was a kid, I never set out to be a politician. When I was asked if I would stand to represent my home region, I couldn’t think of any
reason why I would say no and it was such an honour, and it has been such an absolute honour and a privilege to represent my home. – It’s very very good,
I’m really quite close with the catering staff,
the IT department guys, security, and it’s just,
yeah, it’s just honestly like, some real people like,
value the contribution myself and other British people made. Some people do see my as “Mama India’, I think on the whole of people just appreciate someone who’s not stuffy and who’s doing things a bit differently but has a lot more energy. (soft music) – The people I’ve met,
certainly in particular I mention my Dutch
colleague Samira Rafaela, who sits next me, it was just by chance names in the alphabet that brought us to sit together for the entire time. – Because right away we knew that, well we’re both young, we’re both women, we’re both very ambitious. – Immediately took a selfie. – Yes, indeed, we made a selfie, indeed. To have a, although I
think you should know, I think you should, you should say something.
– Be in it as well. – No, you should since. – We’ll miss her from our group. – We will miss her. I think we are part of the generation which will see maybe where
you can join the EU again, right?
– Yes. I’ll see you in 10 years.
– Yes. – And she will be there. – I might have a few more wrinkles. (soft music) – Of course it’s a great privilege being here to represent the voices of Leavers, and I think my best
experience has been watching, as it were gradually, my fellow MEPs from around Europe realising
the narrative they bought which was either that
British voters were duped and would change their minds
and wanted to stay in the EU, or that we were on the
verge of a fascist coup. When they realised that those things were actually misinformation, fake news, and they start to listen to Brexit part MEPs, it’s
been really interesting having those conversations across Europe with people who wanted to. Curious about what was
going on, to find out more, as I feel as though we’ve
represented our constituents ’cause we’ve given them a voice here. – Although, we are sincerely sad to see a member state leaving the European Union and the United Kingdom share a long history together, and this should truly be a new start point for the building a close
relationship in the future based on a mutual respect and equality. (applauding) (crowd singing) ♪ Should auld acquaintance be forgot, ♪ ♪ And never brought to mind ♪ ♪ Should auld acquaintance be forgot, ♪ ♪ And auld lang syne ♪ – For me, it’s just so devastating. It’s very difficult to (sniffling) yeah, it’s difficult to put into words. ♪ We’ll tak a cup o’ kindness yet ♪ ♪ For auld lang syne ♪ It’s what we’ve experienced for the last three years of solidarity and comradeship and a sense of, of a real deep sadness
from the rest of Europe about what’s happening and
what we’re doing to ourselves. – It’s quite emotional,
and everyone’s just like, people coming to me crying, and then seeing other people crying. I don’t know, you can’t just
hate me out of all days. – This was toxic. So that was being unpleasant, but it maybe summed up the really, almost civil war like, atmosphere we’d got ourselves into. – Do you have any regrets? – Any regrets, we’re leaving! Freedom! Democracy! Self governance! – And so I’m actually brilliantly relieved that we’re leaving ’cause that’s doing what we said we should do and it’s a democratic mandate fulfilled. But also because it will allow us now, I think to, get rid of
some of those tensions. – We’ve stuck with our
principles and in the months and the years to come, I
think we can, I’ll be able to look my son in the eye and say that “I did everything that I could to avoid “the self sabotage that
Brexit basically is.” ♪ For auld lang syne ♪ (cheering)

One comment

  1. Good riddance to the EU.🖕🇬🇧🇬🇧🇬🇧🇬🇧🇬🇧🇬🇧🇬🇧🇬🇧

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