Brexit dominates Queen Elizabeth’s speech

Hauwa Abubakar, UK

Queen Elizabeth has presented her speech which was dominated by Brexit and announced the government’s plans for the year, following the snap elections on June 8.

The Queen always reads the speech for each year, but this year, it covers two years, as the government said it would be busy with Brexit in the long term.

Other issues raised include health, social care, and a stronger economy for Britain.

Just like the snap elections, the queen’s speech came following a short notice especially as it was suspended after elections ended in a hung parliament.

MPs were called to attend a presentation that lacked its usual pageantry.

Brexit

The Queen didn’t wear her crown, and her husband the Duke of Edinburgh was absent due to health challenges.

Out of 24 bills, Brexit takes 8, including one on immigration, which seeks to end free movement of EU Nationals into the UK, while EU nationals and their families would be subject to relevant UK laws.

Another bill on fisheries would enable the country to take control of its waters and set fishing quotas after it leaves the EU.

An Agriculture Bill will also ensure UK farmers are supported and protect the natural environment, post-Brexit.

There is also a Customs Bill, which gives the UK flexibility to accommodate future trade agreements with the EU and others.

Meanwhile, a trade bill would provide a legal framework to allow Britain engage in free trade with countries around the world.

In addition, there’s a Nuclear Safeguards Bill which creates a UK-based nuclear regime post Brexit, and an International Sanctions Bill, which gives the government control of sanctioning powers unilaterally.

Other bills

With Brexit being at the center of the new government, other issues such as education, health, pensions, income and taxes, funding for the National Health Insurance and police, constitute other bills.

However, critics say with little attention given to these issues, chances are that many other relevant issues that need to be tackled by the government would face huge setbacks.

Opposition Liberal Democrats leader, Tim Farron “People up and down the country are seeing our schools and hospitals in crisis. Proposed Tory cuts will leave our children in overcrowded classes in underfunded and crumbling schools, the sick left on trolleys in hospital corridors and the vulnerable without the vital services they rely on.

“This speech is bereft of any real solutions to these issues.

Green Party co-leader Caroline Lucas also said “refusing to give our hard pressed NHS workers the pay rise they deserve reveals a government utterly out of touch.

“The proposed immigration clampdown sees an increasingly hard-line government doubling down on plans they know will wreck our economy.”

 

Nnenna.O