Brexit has ‘shaken things up’ says Sion Jobbins
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Chairman of YesCymru Sion Jobbins spoke to Express.co.uk and explained the Brexit debate has “destabilised” things in Wales which has seen typically apathetic people begin to explore independence ideas. He warned the faith they had in British institutions was being “undermined” leading to stronger calls for local, centralised governance. He added his group did not take a stance on Brexit but has observed it strengthening the cause.
Speaking to Express.co.uk, Mr Jobbins said: “YesCymru took a neutral line on Brexit, so we decided not to say we were for or against and we have people voted for Brexit and we have people who are members who voted against.
“I think what Brexit has done is shaken things up and destabilise things if you like.
“And especially maybe the conduct of things after Brexit by the Westminster government.
“So for a section of our society who support devolution and voted remain I think what Brexit has done is undermined their faith in institutions of the British state.
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“So I think there was a feeling by a lot of people… they felt okay, the UK state, which is not perfect but muddling along, a lot of those have been undermined by the way the Conservatives have dealt with Brexit
“A lot of people who felt fairly comfortable being Welsh, British and European, Brexit has undermined a lot of those kinds of sentiments.
“And maybe they’re not all coming to independence but a lot of them are curious.
“So they’re open to the idea of independence and they’re not totally dismissive of it as they would have been before Brexit, so Brexit has undermined that.”
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YesCymru has 30,000 paid members and saw a surge in joiners after the Scottish parliament election.
Mr Jobbins told Express.co.uk that there was certainly a “domino effect” between what happens in Wales and Scotland but stressed the politics were vastly different.
He added he believes the Welsh independence movement is less confrontational than in Scotland as supporters are less driven by isolationist ideas.
Instead, they still want to maintain a strong relationship with the UK but simply want to have a different government.
He told Express.co.uk that to some the British identity is “redundant” as the culture and unique characteristics could still be enjoyed independently.
He said people in Wales could still enjoy English or Irish food thanks to a globalised world and still wanted to maintain those friendly links
The YesCymru chairman explained his group were not aligned with any political party or position and welcomed anyone who believed in an independent Wales.
Mr Jobbins welcomed working with First Minister Nicola Sturgeon to see if they could swap ideas with one another.
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