Leave campaigner Nigel Farage has warned that Brexit is “on the verge of being betrayed” and Leavers must be prepared to continue the fight either in the face of Article 50 being delayed or a possible second referendum.
Speaking to Sky News on Friday morning, the Brexit architect said that while 498 MPs had voted for Article 50, the mechanism for leaving the EU which states that if a withdrawal agreement is not negotiated, the and the United Kingdom should leave the bloc on World Trade Organization (WTO) terms on March 29th, he fears “that our political establishment, including our Prime Minister… [in] the House of Commons is going to effectively overturn that Brexit.”
“To me, the most likely outcome of all of this is an extension of Article 50,” he said.
“Secondly, it’s the worst-case scenario, but there could be a referendum. What I do know is that the Remain side is well-funded, well-organised, and ready for a second referendum,” he added, saying it would be “negligent” for Leavers to not be prepared.
Nigel Farage says that he believes Article 50 being contested is the most likely option, and if it is extended by more than three months he will be running in the European elections but not with UKIP
— Sky News Politics (@SkyNewsPolitics) January 18, 2019
Mr Farage made this warning also in an opinion piece for The Telegraph published on Thursday evening, in which he said that should Article 50 be delayed by more than three months, Britain would need to prepare candidates for the May elections for the European Parliament — a European Union body that Brexiteers had been expecting to exit since the vote to Leave on June 23rd, 2016 — and that he would be running.
“Brexiteers must accept that the Brexit betrayal is happening. In line with my new year resolution, I am preparing to fight the European elections on May 23rd and working with Leave Means Leave to assemble a cross-party campaign to fight a second referendum, should one occur,” Mr Farage wrote.
“Not to do so would be negligent. It would also betray the 17.4 million people who voted for the UK’s independence.
“After dedicating 25 years to getting Britain out of the EU, I shall return to the battle lines if I must. And I will do so with more determination than I have ever shown before.”
Asked by Adam Boulton on Sky News why he said he would be preparing to stand if we will be leaving the EU and British participation on the European Parliament elections wouldn’t happen, Mr Farage said: “There are lots of things that weren’t going to happen that have happened in the course of the last two years!”
Civil War: Brexit Tories Brand Hammond’s Anti-No Deal Stance ‘Treacherous’ https://t.co/3eQj2q0Wh9
— Breitbart London (@BreitbartLondon) January 17, 2019
“I personally think it is a total failure of government during two and a half years we’ve not gotten ready to leave, we’re not fit and proper to do it,” he continued.
“I don’t want an extension of Article 50, because once you kick the can down the road, once you do it again, and then a second referendum comes into that gap,” Mr Farage said.
“Now I fear we are on the verge of it being betrayed — I’m not going to stand by and watch this happen,” he added.
While Prime Minister Theresa May has said that there would not be a second referendum or a delay of Article 50 since — and even before — her unpopular soft Withdrawal Agreement was voted down on Tuesday, Number 10 has admitted that it has looked at plans into how long it would take to organise a second national poll on British membership of the EU.
A Downing Street spokesman told The Sun, “In order to inform the discussions a very short paper set out in factual detail the number of months which would be required.
“This was illustrative only and our position is of course that there will be no second referendum as the Prime Minister has repeatedly said.”
My New Year resolution was to hope for the best but prepare for the worst, I am afraid that the worst is getting closer. https://t.co/ACUZZeMEsn
— Nigel Farage (@Nigel_Farage) January 17, 2019