Boris Johnson ‘sleepwalking’ into the end of the Union

BORIS Johnson has been accused of “sleepwalking” into the break-up of the Union – amid a claim the UK Government “undercuts devolution”.

The First Minister of Wales, Mark Drakeford, made the admission during an appearance at the House of Lords Constitution Committee.

The Labour politician claimed the Welsh Government was a “rather vanishing creature” in that it still believed in the UK remaining together.

He said: “The state of the Union is under the greatest pressure it has ever been in my political lifetime.

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“In the current UK Government we face for the first time in the history of devolution a Government that is instinctively hostile to devolution.

“The Prime Minister told Conservative backbenchers that devolution was the greatest mistake of the Blair government.

“The actions of his administration bear the hallmark of that. The confrontational approach, the approach of muscular unionism, aggressively unilateral in the way it goes about things.

“We are sleepwalking, if we are not careful, into the end of the Union as we know it.”

Mr Drakeford said the actions of the UK Government were making it increasingly difficult for him to make the case for the Union in Wales.

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He said: “Every single day they create new tensions between us and go on persuading a growing sector of opinion in Wales that Wales will be better off outside the Union.

“We have example after example of where powers are devolved to Wales and where the approach of the UK Government is to cut in, spend money themselves in those devolved areas, undercutting devolution.

“It stokes political tensions and gives ammunition to those people who have come to the conclusion that the Union is over and we would be better off outside it.

“It is a matter of huge regret to me that I have to roll the stone even further up the hill because the UK actively undermines the case for the Union rather than strengthens it.”

The Herald Scotland

The Herald Scotland

The Herald is a Scottish broadsheet newspaper founded in 1783. The Herald is the longest running national newspaper in the world and is the eighth oldest daily paper in the world. The title was simplified from The Glasgow Herald in 1992