BRITISH pensioners have warned that an expat conwoman could be behind a Costa del Sol taxi scam.
The pair, both 75, claim they were confronted by the English woman on the Three Kings bank holiday as they waited for a bus at Arroyo bus stop in Benalmadena.
They told the Olive Press the woman, with a child in her car, told them the buses had been cancelled and they needed to board a shuttle, which was pulled up beside her.
She was ‘quite insistent’ and told them the driver of the 4×4 ‘shuttle’ had a town hall badge.
“We had heard about these scams in your paper and told her that we didn’t believe her,” one of the pensioners, who asked to remain anonymous, revealed.
“She insisted it was true and said the driver was official and had a badge.
“When we told her we would get a real taxi she said they will charge us treble on Three Kings’ Night and became oddly persistent.”
Alarmingly, he added that a foreigner appeared to be enticing a different pensioner across the road to get into the ‘shuttle’.
“At this point a bus came down and the English woman and ‘shuttle’ sped off.”
The expat branded the pair a disgrace.
“If he had a badge it was a forgery, and they were robbing the taxi drivers of business too, God knows what would have happened had we accepted the ‘free’ shuttle.
“Please warn everyone of this scam, it’s a disgrace!”
Have you seen this pair operating in the Benalmadena area or been a victim? Contact the Olive Press at firstname.lastname@example.org
they only present the truth,
ere’s all you need to know;
Conservative MP Nick Boles will propose an amendment to May’s deal next week (need to check exact timing).
That amendment will effectively be what is described as BINO (Brexit in Name Only).
May’s deal with that amendment will be passed by the house.
Only die-hard Brexit supporting MPs and out and out Remain MPs will vote against it. The rest will accept it meets the result of the referendum and does the minimum of damage to the economy. The latter group will be in the majority.
Some of the ‘52%’ will moan about it, as will some of the ‘48%’, but thems the breaks.
The Conservatives will crow that their leader’s deal has been victorious (even if it’s a heavily watered down deal with all the red-lines scrubbed out). They will then get busy electing an ERG type to replace May once everything is tidied up, hoping the public doesn’t realise the chance to change anything is long gone.
The Labour Party will crow that it is with a heavy heart they’ve accepted the deal, but it’s close enough to what they proposed to be ok. They will then enjoy watching the Conservatives in-fighting and entirely forget their own problems till it’s too late.
The DUP will accept the deal on the basis that NI is not treated differently to the rest of the U.K. and there is no impact on the GF agreement. They will continue to support the Conservatives and be paid handsomely.
The SNP will vote against the deal and crow about how this demonstrated the different thinking of the Scottish and that’s why you need to vote SNP. They do not have sufficient numbers to effect the result.
MPs will hope all this is forgotten by 2022 and that the public will vote along party lines like they always do. And they’ll be correct in imagining that that will be the outcome.
‘The only way out of chaos is general election’ – Corbyn
Japanese PM urges MPs to back May’s deal, saying ‘the whole world’ wants UK to avoid crashing out
There was fresh turmoil in British politics as the car-crash debate on Prime Minister Theresa May’s Brexit deal continued for a second day in Westminster.
Labour Party leader Jeremy Corbyn claimed at an event with party supporters that the only way out of the “political chaos” is a general election.
In the House of Commons senior Conservative minister Michael Gove branded Labour’s position on Brexit as “b******s”.
Meanwhile, Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe – in London for talks with Mrs May – urged MPs to back her deal. He said “the whole world” wants Britain to avoid crashing out of the EU.
Mrs May’s Withdrawal Agreement with the EU – including the controversial backstop to avoid a hard Border in Ireland – is set to be voted on by MPs on Tuesday.
It faces massive opposition from Labour, some in the Conservative Party and the DUP, who Mrs May relies upon to stay in power.
She once again called on MPs to support her plan. In somewhat garbled remarks she said: “The only way to avoid no deal is to have a deal and to agree a deal, and the deal that is on the table, the deal that is the deal that the EU has made clear, is the only deal.” In Northern Ireland, Tánaiste Simon Coveney rejected suggestions that defeat of Mrs May’s Withdrawal Agreement is inevitable, insisting there is no majority in Westminster for a no-deal scenario.
Elsewhere, Communications Minister Richard Bruton said a no-deal Brexit would be of “immense concern” and warned of potential disruption to the single electricity market in Ireland. He also said Ireland depends on the UK for supplies of oil and gas but insisted the Government has been “doing a lot of contingency planning” on these issues.
He said the Government respects the British people’s decision to leave the EU. But he added: “It is upsetting to see the difficulty in Westminster in defining that clear way forward so that we can know what direction this is going to go. Hopefully we can reach a decision because a crash out by the UK would do immense damage, not just to us, but to British citizens [and] businesses”.
Mr Corbyn, speaking at an event in Yorkshire, said his party doesn’t have confidence in the British government and added: “The political chaos cannot go on. The only way out of it would be a general election.”
He confirmed his party will call for a vote of no confidence if the Brexit deal is voted down in a bid to force an election.
He said Labour would campaign on a platform of opening fresh Brexit negotiations with Brussels on a potential deal involving a customs union and single market relationship.
Mr Corbyn suggested there would need to be extra time for these talks and so seeking an extension on the UK’s March 29 departure date from the EU would be a possibility.
He said Labour doesn’t have enough MPs to win a confidence vote on its own and MPs across the house should vote with them to “break the deadlock”.
Speaking in the House of Commons, environment secretary Michael Gove claimed that Labour’s Brexit stance is “b******s”. He referred to reports alleging that Labour shadow international trade secretary Barry Gardiner had made similar remarks. Mr Gove said: “There are some distinguished citizens in this country who have put on their cars a poster or sticker saying ‘b******s to Brexit’ – but we now know from Labour’s own front bench that their official Brexit position is b******s.”
Mr Gove said compromise was inevitable with any Brexit deal and insisted Mrs May’s agreement “honours the referendum result” and protects British interests.
The prominent Brexit supporter also defended the backstop for Northern Ireland.
During the debate the night before, Cabinet Office minister David Lidington – Mrs May’s de facto deputy – warned of security tensions in Northern Ireland and the risk that it could leave the United Kingdom in the event of a no-deal Brexit. He said “moderate” Nationalists are becoming more “hard-line” and questioning Northern Ireland’s constitutional status in the UK.
“Their consent… to the Union seems to me to be hugely important to preserving the Union, which I passionately want to do.”
Mr Lidington also said: “We should not underestimate the importance of the guarantee of no hard Border on the island of Ireland and no customs border in the Irish Sea.”
The UK media has buried key facts to narrate a Brexit uprising against Jeremy Corbyn from his supporters.
In its widely shared piece covering recent research on Labour members, the Guardian did not mention that 47% of members support the leadership’s position on Brexit. On the flip side, YouGov found that only 29% of members opposed the position, while 19% are neutral.
In other words, the percentage of Labour members who oppose Corbyn on Brexit is actually less than the 38% that voted for Owen Smith (who outright called for a second referendum) in the 2016 leadership election.
And the percentage of members who think Corbyn is “doing well” exceeds his vote share in the 2016 election (65%).
According to the research, 72% of Labour members think Corbyn should “fully support” a second referendum. But that is exceeded by the 84% who want a general election in the likely event that Theresa May’s deal is voted down. And the question on whether Corbyn should support a second referendum did not specify whether that would be a ‘Leave versus Remain’ referendum or a public vote on the deal. This ambiguity risks inflating support for an outright re-run of the 2016 referendum.
Eyeing the corporate media misrepresentation, pro-Corbyn commentators were unimpressed:
Labour members that voted Jeremy Corbyn in 2016 (most of them) overwhelmingly support Labour’s present Brexit position.
Those that voted Owen Smith (a minority proven wrong) overwhelmingly don’t.
Now, as then, the media completely misreports what Labour members actually think.
Labour members are more enlightened than commentators give them credit for. Yes given a choice many would like a 2nd referendum or to remain. But above all else most want a Labour govt & socialist policies. They can see the bigger picture so understand Corbyn’s approach to Brexit
In response to The Canary, the Guardian pointed to an additional article that includes the finding that 47% of Labour members support Corbyn on Brexit. But the outlet did not explain why its editors and author ignored the statistic in the original write-up.
‘Best outcome is an immediate general election’
Since Labour’s conference in September 2018, its Brexit position has been:
Should Parliament vote down a Tory Brexit deal or the talks end in no-deal, Conference believes this would constitute a loss of confidence in the Government. In these circumstances, the best outcome for the country is an immediate General Election that can sweep the Tories from power.
If we cannot get a general election Labour must support all options remaining on the table, including campaigning for a public vote.
With the Conservative Party on the brink, Corbyn could soon become prime minister of the UK – not simply leader of the opposition. The fact that so many Labour members back Corbyn’s position on Brexit reflects that reality.
British Drivers Forced To Take Spanish Driving Test
British Drivers Forced To Take Spanish Driving Test. Any British person wanting to drive in Spain after Brexit will have to take a mandatory Spanish driving test.
British Drivers Forced To Take Spanish Driving Test
The British Government has advised all British expats in Spain to transfer their driving licences to Spanish documents before Brexit happens. However, the Costa Del Sol authorities have announced that it’s no longer a case of simply transferring a licence, all drivers will now have to take a Spanish driving test. The new rules don’t just apply to Brits to living in Spain, they will apply to anyone from Britain who drives here, including tourists.
The Junta De Andalucia are saying that these tests are not a reaction to Brexit, they are part of an ongoing initiative to improve road safety in the province. A statement from the Upper Marbella Lower Parliamentary Body Responsible For Releasing Statements Unlikely To Ever Be Printed says “The timing is coincidental. The British Government are telling people to get a Spanish licence before Brexit, we’re just doing our best to make that as complicated and expensive as possible.”
The new measures will mean that every British expat or holiday maker who wishes to drive in Andalucia will have no option but to sit an independent driving test in Spain. Upon passing the test, a temporary license will be issued by the Andalucian Road Safety Executive. This license will remain valid for a period of 12 months.
Increasing Road Safety
Senor Marco Aletas De Barro is the chief executive of the regional government’s British Expat Drivers Persecution Committee. He says “We have had no choice but to introduce mandatory tests for British drivers here on the Costa Del Sol. There are too many accidents every year on our roads, and nearly all of them involve British drivers. Thanks to Brexit, we can now do something about it”.
“Everyone knows that Spanish drivers are the safest in Europe”, Sr. Aletas De Batto continued. “We don’t blame the Brits for their dreadful driving, the fault lies with the DVLA and their terribly low standards. By introducing these tests, we can teach British drivers how to behave on our roads, and increase safety for everyone”.
Driving Test For Expats And Tourists
The new test for British drivers can be taken at any town hall in the province, by appointment only. It will comprise a theory element which covers everything from traffic light systems, driving on the right side of the road, local speed limits, and vehicle maintenance. The practical part of the test will include motorway driving, roundabout navigation, town centre driving skills, and appropriate hand gestures. Appointments will be made available from the 1st August.
Prices For The New Tests
The mandatory tests will be introduced on the 29th March 2019, when Brexit is scheduled to take place. Residents will need to make an appointment at their local town hall to sit the theory test, which will cost €199. Upon completion of this, an appointment can be made to sit the practical test. This will cost between €321 and €329 depending upon the location. When this has been successfully completed, the driver will be issued with a license which will permit driving in Spain. This annual license will cost €30.
Tourists who wish to hire a car will have to follow a different procedure. Upon arrival at Malaga Airport or the new Malaga Merida Airport, visitors must present themselves at the driving test registration desk where they will be able to sit the theory test followed by a fast track practical test. The total cost for this, including the license, will be €520.
National Police and the Guardia Civil will be on the lookout for British drivers who haven’t passed the new tests. They will have the power to seize vehicles and impose on the spot fines to anyone caught without the correct license. Car hire firms will also be subject to fines if they are found to be leasing vehicles to unlicensed drivers.
The news of these tests has been met by fierce opposition from British expats on the Costa Del Sol. Anne Fernandez represents a Facebook group of expats who express their outrage on everything from Brexit to appropriate footwear in fast food restaurants. She told Costa Del Sol Update “My members will be outraged by this. This is a disgrace. It’s a rip off, lining the pockets of the local government at the expense of hard working expats who rely on benefits being sent over from the UK. We need to get a Spanish licence after Brexit, but there are no appointments available until August. What are supposed to do? Walk???”
MORRIS BOGBRUSH lives in Estepona but is originally from Birmingham. He told us “I’m froM IRELAND actually, not Birmingham. This is a disgrace, there is nothing wrong with British drivers. It’s the Spanish who should be taking more tests. Are you still listening to me? Are you awake? It’s my accent, it sends people to sleep”.
Are you happy to be taking the new driving tests? Have your say in the comments section below.
Written by Justin Sider, Costa Del Sol Update, 16.01.2019
Humiliation for Theresa May as her Brexit deal is crushed
The Prime Minister has been handed a 432-202 defeat in the House of Commons
Jeremy Corbyn has tabled a motion of no confidence in Theresa May’s Government after the Prime Minister was handed a crushing defeat in the crunch vote on her Brexit deal.
The Labour leader said the confidence vote would allow the Commons to ‘give its verdict on the sheer incompetence of this Government’.
MPs overwhelmingly rejected the PM’s agreement by 432 votes to 202, the worst defeat suffered by a UK Government in more than 100 years.
The Prime Minister is set to head back to Brussels in yet another attempt to secure concessions from the EU on the deal – something EU Commission president Jean-Claude Juncker has repeatedly said he is not willing to do.
What happens next?
Downing Street has given little indication as to how the prime minister intends to proceed if she is defeated.
Under the terms of an amendment passed last week, Mrs May must table a motion on her Plan B by Monday – although in practice she is unlikely to want to wait that long.
Some reports have suggested she could fly to Brussels – possibly as early as Wednesday – in an attempt wring further concessions on the crucial issue of the backstop.
A senior EU Commission official confirmed that Jean-Claude Juncker has pulled out of an event tomorrow in order to be in Brussels to deal with Brexit.
Following further talks it is likely that MPs will vote on the deal again in a matter of days.
Will Brexit be delayed?
It is possible that the PM could delay Brexit by seeking an extension to Article 50 if her deal is defeated to allow more time to tinker with the Withdrawal Agreement.
Mrs May’s tone on extending Article 50 has notably softened this week. She continues to say she does not believe doing so would be a good idea, but is not categorically ruling it out.
The EU would have to agree to this, as Britain cannot extend Article 50 without their permission.
A WANTED British expat has been arrested in Marbella for raking in more than £1 million a year through drug trafficking.
The 44-year-old man from Liverpool – whose identity has not yet been revealed – was arrested under a European Arrest Warrant in San Pedro de Alcantara on Thursday.
Officers identified the wanted Brit as he was leaving a gym close to his Spanish home.
On approaching him, the Liverpudlian grabbed a metal bench and threw it at an officer’s head before running away.
Officers managed to catch and arrest him a few metres down the road.
According to the European Arrest Warrant, the expat is wanted for crimes related to drug trafficking in the UK, for which he cashed in a profit of more than £1 million (around €1.1 million) per year.
Police revealed that he fled the UK while on bail. He was expected to serve a maximum sentence of 19 years.
A court date is expected to be set in the coming weeks.
There was widespread shock and revulsion at the abuse Anna Soubry received outside her place of work, which happens to be the Houses of Parliament. The irony is that it was the far-right thugs shouting “Nazi’” at her who received less attention. But the bigger picture behind this week’s abhorrent events is far more alarming and should command our attention. Because the UK is witnessing creeping fascism and a revival of destructive nationalism in the wake of the Brexit vote.
Back in 1995, Italian historian and novelist Umberto Eco carried out a study into fascism in his country in the 1930s, coming up with 14 signs typical of a far-right regime. What sent a shiver down my back was to see how many of these can already be found in post-referendum Britain.
One of Eco’s signs of fascism is the “fear of difference” – a fear whipped up by Nigel Farage with his “breaking point” poster and other xenophobic rhetoric. We have now reached a point where members of our community, some who have lived among us for decades but were born elsewhere in Europe, face abuse in our streets. Another is the “cult of tradition” – exemplified by the yearning for recapturing the notion of the British Empire, dressed up as “Global Britain”. Then there’s the idea that “disagreement is treason” – best exemplified by the notorious Daily Mail front page calling judges “enemies of the people”.
Meanwhile, Brexit secretary Stephen Barclay cited the intimidation of Soubry as a good reason not to have a democratic People’s Vote. By doing so he played straight into the hands of those who use the “will of the people” as cover for sidelining genuine public debate, something Eco might describe as “action for action’s sake” without reflection or thought.
As with 1930s Germany, Eco notes how Italian fascism fed off an “appeal to social frustration”. Ten years of Tory austerity has made our society a fertile ground for that. So we see underfunding of public services blamed on “immigrants pushing their way to the front of the queue” for hospital treatment and housing, while unemployment or low pay is blamed on migrants queue jumping or “taking our jobs”.
Then there is the gender dimension. The targets of the disturbing intimidation we have seen are most often women and the perpetrators predominantly men. The award-winning journalist Carole Cadwalladr, who has bravely and tirelessly exposed the dodgy individuals and corporations behind the Leave campaign, has had to endure an endless tirade of abuse and bully-boy tactics. Arron Banks, who bankrolled the Leave campaign and is under investigation for multiple criminal offences, has repeatedly intimidated Carole on social media including a spoof video showing her beaten up and threatened with a gun. We know that this intimidation can result in real physical harm and are reminded of the brutal murder of Jo Cox and the plot to murder another Labour MP, Rosie Cooper.
Whether we think of Trump’s America or Brexit Britain, it has been noted that, given men have had considerably more power in society for centuries, moving into a position of equal power with women feels like a great loss to many men. I am hugely blessed to be in the Green Party, where men have frequently told me how pleased they are that we have so many prominent women to help redress the gender imbalance.
But men who feel vulnerable or disempowered are much more likely to respond to women’s empowerment with oppression and violence. This sense of loss of strength has been further reinforced by loss of dignity in work, social dislocation, a breakdown in trust in institutions after the financial crisis, and the rapid changes caused by globalisation. All this creates fertile soil for the dangerous ideology of nationalism and fascism, a sign identified by Eco as “machismo”.
Propaganda is of course also a key weapon of the far right and was invented by the Italian fascists in the 1930s. This is now labelled as “fake news” and has been turbocharged by social media and facilitated by the speed and reach of digital communications. An analysis of posts on Twitter by three million people between 2006 and 2017 discovered that lies and disinformation travel more quickly than truth.
While these are worrying times, I am convinced that the good sense and tolerant nature of the British people will prevail. This is why I am organising a number of public meetingswith journalists, experts, and cross-party politicians to explore some of the conceptual ideas behind fascism; how we can spot the signs of it, defend ourselves from it and help reinforce our democratic values. Cherishing diversity, championing peace, seeking out evidence, standing out from the crowd, enjoying and taking part in community life, joining a trade union and valuing empowered women are just some of the ways in which we can challenge nationalism and fascism and defend democracy.
Eternal vigilance is still the price of freedom. We need to work together to build our communities, to enhance our understanding and to champion the British values and culture that has always made our democracy the envy of the world.
Molly Scott Cato is Green MEP for the South West of England
After months of negotiations, the Brexit deal was due to be voted upon in order for the United Kingdom’s Parliament to approve or reject Theresa May’s controversial plan.
However, last month the prime minister dramatically called off the “meaningful vote”, in the face of what had been expected to be a significant defeat at the hands of rebel MPs.
Shortly after delaying the vote, the Prime Minister announced that it will instead be held in the week beginning on the 14th January – with a debate in Parliament taking place from the 7th January.
But what does all this mean for the “meaningful vote” exactly, and what will the outcome mean? Here is all you need to know about what it is and the process involved.
What is the “meaningful vote” on Brexit, and how will it work in the House of Commons?
The “meaningful vote” Parliamentarians have on both the Withdrawal Agreement and the outline for the future relationship between Brexit Britain and the European Union was made law under Section 13(1) of the European Union (Withdrawal) Act 2018, which requires the draft deal to be put to both the House of Commons and House of Lords.
If MPs pass it, the deal will have much less of a problem making its way through the House of Lords.
When has the vote been rescheduled for?
The vote was originally expected to take place on Tuesday 11 December at around 7pm. But now the debate has resumed, with the meaningful vote penciled in for Tuesday 15th January.
The Prime Minister’s official spokesman said that Mrs May would observe the “spirit” of the EU Withdrawal Act, which requires her to make a statement to the Commons “before the end of January 21” if no agreement in principle has been reached with Brussels.
There was confusion at Westminster over whether the January 21 deadline applied, as a withdrawal deal has been reached. But Commons authorities suggested it did not, saying that in principle the ratification vote could take place as late as March 28 – the day before Brexit is scheduled to happen.
Will Parliament vote for or against the deal?
As it stands, the Government appears likely to lose any vote on the current deal – hence the new delay. Over 100 Conservative MPs have voiced opposition to it. The DUP and its 10 MPs have made clear they would vote against it. Hardcore Remainers, meanwhile, were planning to vote the deal down in the hope of a second referendum instead.
That means Mrs May would have needed Labour votes to succeed. However, the Labour leadership has been adamant that it opposes the deal and wants a general election. Convincing up to 100 opposition members to rebel and vote with the Government would have been a very tall order.
While defeat seemed certain, the hope had been that it would have been small enough for the Prime Minister to survive and head to Brussels to renegotiate.
However, Downing Street has grown worried that the defeat would be too heavy for Mrs May to carry on after. Instead, the vote has been delayed and Mrs May will try and win concessions from the EU first.
She is unlikely to get anything major from Brussels. The key issue, the Irish backstop, is not open for renegotiation. The demands from the Brexiteers for a time limit or a unilateral exit mechanism would render the backstop incapable of performing its intended job and so the EU will not allow it.
Nor is Brussels willing to reopen the legally-binding Withdrawal Agreement more generally. It fears demands from member states over issues such as fishing and Gibraltar. So all that will be on offer are small tweaks to the non-binding Political Declaration and perhaps a statement from EU lawyers on the backstop not being permanent.
None of which will be big enough to change the minds of most Brexiteer MPs. They might, however, reduce the size of the rebellion and thus make the two vote strategy viable again.
What happens if MPs do not pass it?
The original plan, once it became clear the Government would lose the vote at the first attempt, was to try again a few days later. The expectation was that Mrs May would try and negotiate a few concessions from the EU, while market turmoil would spook MPs and make them think again. Although, with traders being fully aware of the plan and so “pricing it in”, the odds of a major shift in the markets looked slim.
While the “renegotiation” will now happen ahead of the vote, Downing Street may still need more than one attempt to get it through Parliament.
In the intervening period between a first and second attempt to pass the deal, Labour would probably try and force a general election. This would be very difficult because of the Fixed Term Parliament Act and would require Conservative MPs to help topple their own government.
If and when that attempt fails, Labour might try and secure a vote for a second referendum. This would still require support from Tory MPs but would likely be easier than forcing a general election. Those efforts were boosted on Monday by the European Court of Justice ruling that the UK can revoke Article 50 unilaterally.
The ruling removes the risk of Britain either not being allowed back in or having to make hugely unpalatable concessions such as agreeing to join the euro.
In the meantime, there might also be attempts to push the Government towards a softer Plan B, probably along the lines of “Norway Plus“. This would mean staying in the single market and the customs union and continuing freedom of movement. It would, however, have an exit mechanism, unlike the Irish backstop, and potentially command a majority in the house. Several Cabinet ministers are rumoured to have been looking at the idea, but Labour continues to say that it is against a Norway-style Brexit.