In the aftermath of thec EU Referendum Sajjad looks at the road ahead.
The British people have made a choice by a small margin to leave the EU after four decades of overall economic growth within it. There is no certainty to where exactly it leaves us now, with Brexit meaning different things to different people including those who advocated for it.
But one thing is sure - both in Brussels and London we must safeguard Britain and the British people by ensuring jobs and livelihoods are secured.
Access to the Single Market must be a priority. Without it, trade with Europe cannot continue as before which will mean that jobs and opportunities are lost.
Equally concerns must also be taken on-board with regard to immigration and Freedom of Movement.
These were two of the key issues during the Referendum campaign and they should not be ignored.
It will inevitably be tricky to balance Freedom of Movement and the Single Market - since you cannot have one without the other.
The Referendum result has unfortunately seen a rise in discriminatory and xenophobic incidents, some of which have taken place locally. Diverse communities exist across the North West which have felt the effects.
Negative and dark forces have been unleashed as a result of the vote, which somehow need to be curtailed.
"Misunderstandings" on immigration promises need to be put right by those who made them and all publicly elected representatives who stood on this platform now owe all our communities a duty to heal the wounds.
My own prediction is that we will negotiate a settlement where the Single Market is maintained with Freedom of Movement continuing with reducing immigration in line with diminished opportunities.
We will give up our Prime Minister’s seat at the table, our Commissioner’s powers and our British voice in the European Parliament but carry on paying the same contributions as we do today.
We will have given up a great deal of power and influence on our own continent - Europe.
Some will say that this is what taking back control is. In reality our future Prime Minister will have to ask other European leaders to plead our case in the European Union. That's not the Great Britain I grew up in but it is the decided course we must now take.
I will guarantee one thing - an absolute commitment to every constituent to use all of my connections, networks and knowledge gained from 12 years as an active MEP and remain constructively engaged to deliver the best possible outcome for the UK.
I must be totally straight with everyone though.
No matter what deal we are able to secure, it will not be anywhere near as good an arrangement as when we were at the table.