Sections of Salmond legal advice 'hidden' ahead of Sturgeon grilling

04 Mars, 2021, 04:06 | Auteur: Auguste Feret
  • Scotland's First Minister Nicola Sturgeon removes her face covering as she arrives to give evidence to The Committee on the Scottish Government Handling of Harassment Complaints at Holyrood in Edinburgh examining the government's handling of

It has been a spectacular falling out between Sturgeon and Salmond, her political mentor and long-time friend, casting a shadow over the SNP's prospects at elections coming up in May as the party steps up calls for a second referendum on Scottish independence.

But British Prime Minister Boris Johnson has repeatedly refused to sanction a new vote, after Scots voted in 2014 to remain part of the United Kingdom.

Scottish Conservative leader Douglas Ross said: "Credible witnesses have now backed up Alex Salmond's claims and the legal advice shows the government knew months in advance that the judicial review was doomed but they still went on to waste more than £500,000 of taxpayers' money". She told the committee she "will do my best to answer every question asked of me directly and in as much detail as I can".

"For anyone, at least anyone willing to listen with an open mind, that is what I will seek to demonstrate today", she said, before beginning a detailed defence of her individual decisions, expected to last most of the day.

A no-confidence vote in Nicola Sturgeon is to be submitted by the Scottish Conservatives.

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Before his own appearance before the inquiry last week, Salmond accused Sturgeon and her closest allies of conspiring against him to the extent of having him imprisoned.

"We have genuinely held views and concerns about the basis on which governments need to be able to take confidential legal advice and incidentally when Alex Salmond was First Minister, he held those views and as strongly as I do now".

Denying that she had broken the code, a transgression that would normally lead to a resignation, Sturgeon hit back hard, rejecting Salmond's talk of a plot as absurd and linking the saga to the broader context of the "me too" movement.

Salmond stood trial on charges of sexual assault and was acquitted a year ago.

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