Nicola Sturgeon launches blistering Brexit attack as she brands shortages ‘shameful’

Nicola Sturgeon launches blistering Brexit attack

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Nicola Sturgeon addressed Holyrood where Green Party co-leaders, Patrick Harvie and Lorna Slater, appeared so they could be voted in as junior ministers as part of the SNP’s new power-sharing agreement. But during her speech, Ms Sturgeon said Scotland needed to address the Brexit “disaster” which she said has caused labour shortages across the country leaving shops running low on supplies. The chamber roared during her condemnation of Westminster as Ms Sturgeon expressed her support of the Green Party as she hopes to build a strong future for Scotland.

Speaking in Holyrood, Ms Sturgeon attacked Brexit and stated the best future for Scotland was one independent from Westminster and was green. 

She told MSPs the labour shortages across the UK were a “direct and shameful result of the Brexit disaster” as politicians could be heard cheering in the background.

She continued: “We must defend our Parliament against UK Government power grabs that are undermining the very principles on which it is founded.

“And as we do so, recognise that the best way not just to protecting this parliament from Westminster but also equipping it with the full powers it needs to build a fairer, more prosperous country.

“Is to make this parliament, independent of Westminster.

“That is why fulfilling our democratic mandate to let the Scottish people choose our own future is a key strand of this agreement.

“These are the inescapable challenges that confront us, how we respond to them will shape Scotland now and for the decades ahead.

“In the face of the magnitude of these challenges and for this we all bear a share of responsibility, our politics can too often seem small, polarised, divided, focused on self-interest rather than the national interest.

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“Perhaps I’m seeing evidence of it already today.

“If we are to meet the moment, we must all try to do politics differently and in this agreement, the Scottish Government and the Scottish Greens are accepting our responsibility to do that.”

The new agreement between the Greens and SNP is just shy of a formal coalition but will enable Green politicians to take senior government roles for the first time in its history.

Two Green MSPs will be appointed as junior ministers with the Green co-leaders allowed to sit in on cabinet twice a year.

In the May elections, the SNP fell one seat short of an overall majority and had the choice of forming another minority government with the support of the Greens.

However, political opponents of the SNP have claimed the power-sharing agreement is simply a coalition in all but name as they accused Ms Sturgeon of working with the Greens to gain independence. 

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Both the Greens and SNP have had political agreements in the past surrounding independence and have unofficially worked together to pass favourable legislation in Holyrood. 

Mr Harvie, if voted through parliament today, will become the Minister for Zero Carbon Buildings, Active Travel, and Tenants’ Rights.

Ms Slater is set to be the Minister for Green Skills, Circular Economy, and Biodiversity with both MSPs being allowed access to central government decision making.

The UK has experienced a shortage of HGV drivers as businesses across the country have struggled to see deliveries arrive on time. 

Several reasons have been blamed as the cause of the shortage, including testing backlogs because of the pandemic, poor pay, and European workers no longer staying in the UK because of Brexit.

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