People Challenge salutes Divisional Court as ‘guardians of democracy’

In a landmark decision today, the Divisional Court in London has upheld a judicial review brought by Gina Miller, Dier Dos Santos, the People’s Challenge and others and ruled that the Government cannot use the Royal Prerogative to leave the EU by triggering Article 50.  Fergal McFerran, the elected president of NUS-USI participated in what has now become commonly known as ‘The Peoples Challenge’, in which he submitted evidence as to the effect the decision would have on citizens, and in particular, students of Northern Ireland.


Fergal McFerran, outside Court in London today said:


I welcome today’s judgement as one which is a victory for common sense and accountability. If Theresa May had been allowed to invoke Article 50 without the oversight and scrutiny of Parliament it would have set a dangerous precedent that entirely undermines the role of a modern Parliamentary democracy.


The implications that Northern Ireland will face in the event of our exit from the European Union demand a level of scrutiny that the British Government were trying to deny us. Today’s judgement gives us a voice in the process and my hope is that Parliament’s full involvement can begin to heal a very clearly divided country.”


Fergal’s solicitor, Darragh Mackin of KRW LAW LLP said:


“It is clear from today’s judgment that there is a need for Parliamentary scrutiny on an issue of such fundamental importance.  As Fergal has evidenced, this is arguably of even greater significance to the people of this jurisdiction.  The reality is legislation was introduced to create the rights afforded under the EU and only legislation can remove them.  Parliamentary scrutiny is a minimum level of protection that democracy demands when removing such rights, and we now look forward to the next stage of this process.”


“It is anticipated that the Government will seek to appeal today’s result.  Any such appeal to the UKSC will be robustly defended and we intend to begin the preparation for same imminently.”





Notes for Editors:


  1. Any queries should be directed to the Fergal’s solicitor, Darragh Mackin, KRW Law, at or +7976070023.


  1. KRW LAW LLP acted in Tandem with the London based Human Rights Firm, Bindmans LLP who represent the remaining individuals of the ‘Peoples Challenge’.


  1. The People’s Challenge group has opened a new CrowdJustice campaign in order to raise the money required to defend against a government appeal.


  1. As before, the group will provide regular updates on the progress of the preparations for the Court hearing, the hearing itself and the funding campaign.


  1. Later today there will be an update on the group’s CrowdJustice pages giving an analysis of the Divisional Court’s decision.