Statement by Simon Hughes on Gibraltar election result

9 Dec 2011

UK Liberal Democrats welcome new Gibraltar government

The Rt Hon Simon Hughes MP, President of the British Group of Liberal International and deputy leader of the UK Liberal Democrats was one of the first today to congratulate the new government on its success in the Gibraltar general election.

Mr Hughes, who had been kept informed of the count throughout the night, was given the final good news at 7.44 this morning.

In an immediate message to the Honourable Joseph Garcia, leader of the Liberal Party of Gibraltar and deputy leader of the GSLP Liberal Alliance,

Mr Hughes said: "Wonderful. Phenomenal. Big congratulations to you and you team and my very best wishes to the new Chief Minister and his colleagues as well."

Mr Hughes, who has visited Gibraltar many times and spoken at national day and other events on many occasions, said: "8 December 2011 was a historic day for Liberals in Gibraltar and in Europe. For the first time ever, Liberals are now part of the government of Gibraltar.

"We look forward with excitement and enthusiasm to the years ahead. Of course I pay tribute to the public service over many years of the outgoing Chief Minister, Peter Caruana. But in the words of the Alliance slogan, in Gibraltar it is now clearly 'time for change', and this is what the voters of Gibraltar have said this week.

"I look forward to visiting Gibraltar again soon - and congratulating Dr Garcia, Stephen Linares, Neil Costa and all the Liberal party team. Their success is well-deserved. I am confident that now they will set about their ambitious plans to serve all the people of Gibraltar in the years ahead'.