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Fisheries minister went to a nativity instead of reading Brexit bill

Fisheries minister Victoria Prentis in the House of Commons

Fisheries minister went to a nativity instead of reading Brexit bill

Fisheries minister Victoria Prentis is facing calls for her resignation after admitting she helped organise a nativity trail instead of reading the Brexit deal on fishing.

Asked during a Lords evidence session if her jaw had dropped when she saw the deal with the EU on Christmas Eve, she said: "No, the agreement came when we were all very busy on Christmas Eve, in my case organising the local nativity trail.

“We had been waiting and waiting, it looked like it was coming for probably four days before it actually arrived.

“I, for one, had gone through, as I’m sure members of this committee had, a gamut of emotions over those four days.”

Dr Philippa Whitford, SNP MP for Central Ayrshire and the party's Shadow Brexit spokesperson, said: “Due to Brexit-induced bureaucracy, Scotland's fishing communities are already experiencing severe disruption and cannot get their produce to their customers in the EU market on time. Having already lost thousands of pounds in discarded seafood, many boats in my constituency are now tied up in the harbour.

“For the Tory government's Fisheries Minister to then admit that she did not even bother to read the details of the damaging deal because she was too busy is unbelievable and makes her position untenable."

A Downing Street spokesperson told the Press Association that the prime minister had confidence in Prentis.

 

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