DUMBARTON REPORTER COLUMN: TUESDAY 17 JULY 2018

PICTURE: Martin alongside the family of his constituent Jagtar Singh Johal.

In a remarkable week in parliament we’ve seen Theresa May’s shambles of a UK government in chaos as the Tory party continues to tear itself apart over Brexit.

The Prime Minister’s Chequers proposal was two years in the making, but took just two days to unravel following the dramatic Cabinet resignations of David Davis and Boris Johnson.

It’s certainly a far cry from the ‘strong and stable’ government promised by the Tories at the last election, but no surprise to see the likes of Boris Johnson yet again put his own political self-interest ahead of the interests of everyone else.

There has rarely been an individual as unfit for the office of Foreign Secretary as Boris Johnson. Rather than being allowed to resign, he should have been sacked months ago for incompetence.

In between his political gaffes and embarrassing antics as Foreign Secretary, Boris Johnson has shown little regard for the needs of the people he was supposed to be helping.

People such as my constituent Jagtar Singh Johal – a Son of the Rock imprisoned abroad for over 8 months now. I have been working closely with Jagtar’s family here in Dumbarton since his arrest – regularly raising his case in parliament in an effort to secure the full support of the UK government.

Despite serious concerns about my constituent’s torture and mistreatment, Boris Johnson repeatedly avoided getting involved. It took 8 months before Boris Johnson finally agreed to meet with the family to discuss my constituent’s plight, only for Boris to now resign and run away from the mess he has created.

It’s frustrating for Jagtar and his family, but we remain determined to do everything possible to ensure Jaggi is afforded a fair and transparent judicial process by the Indian authorities.

With a new Foreign Secretary now in place, my immediate priority is to secure a meeting with Jeremy Hunt as soon as possible to press for his full support on behalf of my constituent and his family.

Time will tell whether the departure of the disastrous Boris Johnson will prove to be a blessing in disguise not only for Jagtar but for Scotland.

This article appeared in the Dumbarton Reporter on Tuesday 17th July 2018.

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