McAlpine demands answers from Oliver Mundell over EU vote

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Joan McAlpine has launched a scathing attack on Dumfriesshire MSP Oliver Mundell for voting to leave the EU.


Mr Mundell campaigned for a leave vote against the wishes of a majority of his constituents.


Ms McAlpine said he “owes answers” to his constituents as the consequences of Brexit for the region come to light.


The SNP MSP said:


“Mr Mundell’s decision to vote for Brexit was entirely ill considered.


“He owes answers to his constituents and gave none today in the Scottish Parliament – like Boris Johnson and the rest of the Leave campaign he quite disgracefully had no blueprint to offer.”


Ms McAlpine was commenting following a debate in the Scottish Parliament on the implications of the European referendum result.


The SNP MSP, who has recently taken up the Convenership of the Europe and External Affairs Committee in the Scottish Parliament, led the back bench speeches in her capacity as a representative for South Scotland. 


She was speaking as the Council outlined the local projects threatened by Brexit including as Broadband roll out, which is underpinned by European grants.


She said:


“Scottish Farmers got £824 million from the EU in 2014. The National Farmers Union says every £1 of EU CAP payment paid out in Scotland puts £4 into the rural economy.  European Structural Funds in Scotland from 2014-2020 are worth 985 million euros. This pays for everything from roads to employability.  Rural development funding funds everything from farm diversification to broadband initiatives to farm diversification.


“It’s only recently that Dumfries and Galloway in my South Scotland region was celebrating a record £5.6 million in rural development funding – the third highest in Scotland.”


“What will happen to this money going forward?


“The truth is we don’t know – because Oliver Mundell and the Leave campaign acted recklessly, with no blueprint for Brexit.”


During the debate, Europe secretary Fiona Hyslop lambasted Oliver Mundell for claiming that it is not for the Scottish Government to act, suggesting we should ” wait and see what the UK Government does.”


Commenting, Joan said:


“This is a total abdication of responsibility.  Doing nothing will hardly help those affected in constituency.


“So much for Dumfriesshire’s man in parliament!”