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GSD slams Hassan Nahon’s position on integration

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The GSD has accused independent MP Marlene Hassan Nahon of failing to understand the concepts of devolved integration or self-determination.

This comes after Mrs Hassan Nahon described as “a backwards step” the GSD’s suggestion that integration with UK could offer Gibraltar a Brexit fall-back position.

Ms Hass Nahon said the GSD proposal represented a return to “flunked” ideas of the past.

Her comments, the GSD said, demonstrate little understanding of the concept of devolved integration, the principle of self-determination or the purpose of the Select Committee.

They also “…strike a note of discord when the Government and Opposition are striving to work together to determine the best way forward for Gibraltar as the UK negotiates Brexit,” the Opposition said.

The GSD insisted that devolved integration will not involve the loss of self-government achieved under the 2006 Constitution.

“That level of self-government would remain as does our ability to raise our own taxes and run our own economy,” it said.

A UK act of Parliament would change the status of Gibraltar from Overseas Territory to integrated territory, the GSD said, adding that Gibraltar would have a similar status to Scotland or Wales but with today’s level of self-government.

The GSD further accused Mrs Hassan-Nahon of not understanding the right of self-determination.

“A referendum on whether we should or should not accept devolved integration would be an act of self-determination,” the party added.

“Her position is undemocratic and clearly she has not thought it through.”

“She is attempting to prevent the people of Gibraltar from exercising their right to self-determination in a referendum on this option, if it were offered by the UK, simply because she personally does not like the idea.”

The GSD said it has suggested this option as a fallback position intended to avoid the possibility that Gibraltar is left out, by the EU, of a deal giving the UK access to the Single Market.

The Chief Minister has described the denial of access to the Single Market as an existential threat to Gibraltar’s current economic model, the GSD stated, adding that integration would include Gibraltar as part of the UK in any deal negotiated for the UK.

“Mrs Hassan-Nahon prefers to risk the loss of businesses leading to unemployment over allowing the people of Gibraltar to make a choice in a referendum that could prevent an economic downturn,” the party said.

The GSD added that Mrs Hassan-Nahon’s statement also “…fails to grasp the purpose of the Select Committee, which is to discuss all options available to our community, integration being one, before determining how to proceed and certainly not to have options ruled out before the committee is constituted.”

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