You are not special Nicola! Ross orders Sturgeon to resign as ‘trust’ failing over Salmond
Nicola Sturgeon questioned by Marr on whether she will resign
Ms Sturgeon has been accused by her predecessor of misleading parliament with her accounts of when she first knew about sexual harassment allegations against him and breaching the Scottish Government ministerial code. However, Ms Sturgeon said she would “vigorously” refute accusations she misled the Scottish Parliament or breached the Ministerial Code, following claims by the former Scottish First Minister.
A Holyrood committee is currently looking at the Scottish Government’s unlawful investigation into sexual misconduct complaints against Mr Salmond.
The botched probe, which cost the taxpayer over £500,000 ended the friendship between Nicola Sturgeon and Salmond, whose allies believe he was stitched up.
Mr Salmond was also charged with sexual offences but later acquitted after a trial at the Edinburgh Court of Session last year.
Scottish Conservative leader Douglas Ross stressed Ms Sturgeon was not special or unique and made clear other Scottish First Ministers had resigned for less serious actions.
We will use your email address only for sending you newsletters. Please see our Privacy Notice for details of your data protection rights.
Speaking this morning, he added: “If this was a UK Prime Minister being criticized and accused of lying by a former UK Prime Minister, things would be far more serious than they seem to be in Scotland at the moment.
“But this comes down to a matter of trust of the First Minister, and the evidence is building that she has lied to MSPs and has misled the Scottish Parliament.
“That for me is clearly a resigning matter, we see previous resignations of previous First Ministers and party leaders here in Scotland for much less.
“Indeed opinion polls have shown in the last week that 68 percent of people believe if Nicola Sturgeon is found to have lied to the Scottish Parliament, she would then to have to resign as First Minister, they don’t think it’s acceptable.”
Mr Ross stressed: “I think if anyone had seen the First Minister on television earlier on today she gets very touchy about this issue and the interrogation into what she knew, when she knew it, and how her Government have handled this whole situation.”
Henry McLeish, Scotland’s second FM, resigned as First Minister in 2001 over undeclared income from subletting his office, a scandal dubbed “Officegate” at the time.
Asked about Mr Salmond’s claims on The Andrew Marr Show, Ms Sturgeon said: “I don’t accept that and I will refute that vigorously.”
Ms Sturgeon said she had hoped to appear before the Holyrood committee investigating the affair this coming week, but her appearance had been delayed by a “couple of weeks”.
Sturgeon’s party in turmoil as party SPLIT on how to achieve indy [LATEST]
SNP blunder as £700k spent on ‘political propaganda’ thank-you letter [REVEAL]
SNP sparks furious row as Sturgeon accused of ‘stashing away’ cash [INSIGHT]
She said: “I will sit before that committee and I will set out my account of what happened, given the very difficult situation that I faced, and people can make their own judgments on that.”
Ms Sturgeon initially told Holyrood she first heard of the sexual misconduct complaints against her predecessor when they met at her home on April 2 2018, but it later emerged she discussed the allegations with Mr Salmond’s chief of staff, Geoff Aberdein, in her Holyrood office four days earlier.
A separate investigation, chaired by James Hamilton QC, is looking into whether Ms Sturgeon broke the ministerial code by failing to report meetings.
Scottish Labour interim leader Jackie Baillie has also called on the Scottish Crown Office to launch an investigation into the evidence Nicola Sturgeon’s husband provided to the Alex Salmond Inquiry.
In a letter, the MSP called for an urgent probe into Peter Murrell’s answers in front of MSPs.
The SNP Chief Executive sent messages on the day after Mr Salmond was charged with sexual offences.
One message showed him saying it was a “good time to be pressurising” the police.
Mr Murrell later said he regretted sending the messages to the former Scottish First Minister.
Ms Baillie, Scottish Labour’s representative on the Holyrood Complaints Committee, asked the SNP Chief Executive if there were “other text messages” to any SNP official on the matter.
However, Ms Sturgeon’s husband said “no” twice including confirming under oath.
Now in a letter to the Crown Office, Ms Ballie said it would “seem to be the case that, from information recently placed in the public domain, there were other text and what’s app messages” sent by Mr Murrell.
He added: “Indeed the Committee has written to you using its Section 23 powers, set out in the Scotland Act, to request sight of those messages, so they evidently exist.”
The Committee on the Scottish Government Handling of Harassment Complaints took the unprecedented step of issuing a notice to the Crown Office under part of the Scotland Act, demanding the messages.
A spokeswoman for Mr Salmond said: “The two inquiries underway are into why Nicola Sturgeon’s Government acted unlawfully.
“Alex has submitted his evidence as requested and the parliamentary committee is now challenging the Crown Office to produce some of the text messages which they believe are being suppressed.
“The evidence, if published, will speak for itself.”
The Scottish Government and Crown Office has been approached for comment.
Source: Read Full Article