Inquiry finds Sturgeon guilty of misleading parliament
March 2021: An investigation by a Scottish parliament committee into the government’s unlawful handling of harassment allegations against Alex Salmond concluded that Nicola Sturgeon had misled parliament.
A few weeks after, Liz Lloyd was dismissed from her post as Chief of Staff to Nicola Sturgeon and took an extended leave of absence, returning to the Scottish Government in August 2021 as a “Special Adviser” reporting direct to the First Minister fulfilling a new role, created by Sturgeon with responsibility to work across government and with stakeholders to provide strategic advice on the delivery of the government’s policy programme.
A kick in the teeth for many Scots who thought that a small amount of justice had been gained by her dismissal. No chance!!!!
Roles and responsibilities of the Special Adviser (SPAD)
SPAD’s are not civil servants but as paid employees of the State they are – subject to specified exceptions – required to conduct themselves in accordance with the Civil Service Code.” which states that the highest standards of conduct are expected of them.
i. “Specifically, the preparation or dissemination of inappropriate material or personal attacks has no part to play in the job of being a special adviser as it has no part to play in the conduct of public life.
ii. “Any special adviser ever found to be disseminating inappropriate material will automatically be dismissed by their appointing minister.
iii. “Special advisers…must observe discretion and express comment with moderation, avoiding personal attacks.”
iv “All contacts with news media should be authorized, in advance by the First Minister.”
Afternote 1: Liz Lloyd was awarded civil servant status and received more than £6,000 in legal advice relating to her conduct. She refused to to appear at the inquiry and instead submitted written evidence which could not be challenged. The content of the £6,000 letter to the inquiry was rendered useless since it was so heavily redacted by the Scottish Government before submission.
Afternote 2: It has been established, beyond reasonable doubt that the criminal passing of confidential government information about false allegations of misconduct in office by Alex Salmond to the Daily Record and journalist David Clegg in October 2017, was the act of a senior Scottish Government SPAD.
That person is still in the employ of the Minister concerned so it follows (interpreting the rule) that the leak was authorised, in advance by the Minister.
That person needs to be exposed to the public and the police so that appropriate action can be taken to restore the confidence of the electorate who are disillusioned by the s***house politicking of its government ministers.
“Special Adviser” activities are constrained by a number of restrictions.
They are not permitted to:
participate in Westminster or Scottish political activities, including, in a party political organisation, any office which impinges wholly or mainly on party politics.
speak in public on matters of Westminster or Scottish political controversy.
express views on Westminster or Scottish politics in letters to the Press, or in blogs, books, articles or leaflets
being announced publicly as a candidate or prospective candidate for the Westminster or Scottish Parliament.
canvass on behalf of a candidate for the Westminster or Scottish political institutions or on behalf of a political party.
Comment: In reality all of the foregoing restrictions are, with the tacit support of senior government ministers routinely ignored by Sturgeons “Special Adviser” team whose conduct is placed above the laws of good political practice.
Liz Lloyd tries to play both sides
Geoff Aberdein revealed that Liz Lloyd, Sturgeon’s, chief of staff told him at a meeting in Aberdeen, on 6 March 2018 that she “suspected” the Scottish Government was investigating the former first minister over sexual harassment claims. She also revealed the name of one of the complainants
The new details were contained in a statement released by Aberdein confirming he was the mysterious “intermediary” who, as a longstanding associate and friend of Alex Salmond and in the interests of transparency, helped set up a series of meetings between Sturgeon and Salmond in late March, early April 2018.
Lloyd later confirmed at a meeting between her Aberdein in late March 2018, arranged again at Lloyd’s request, that she suspected the Scottish Government had received an official complaint about Mr Salmond. She said she did not know the full details of any potential complaint and had not alerted the First Minister to her suspicions about a potential complaint.
Sturgeon insisted she first learned that Leslie Evans, Scotland’s chief civil servant, had launched an investigation from Salmond, in person at Sturgeon’s home, on 2 April 2018.
But a spokesman for Alex Salmond yesterday claimed: “In the interests of accuracy it is the case that Sturgeon’s, senior special adviser, Liz Lloyd, knew of the existence of complaints against Alex well before the meeting of 2 April 2018 and that she had initiated the first contact through Geoff Aberdein, “They then arranged the meetings which Alex asked for. Alex has no certainty as to the state of knowledge of the first minister before then.”
Full details provided to the inquiry by Duncan Hamilton, Advocate: (https://archive2021.parliament.scot/HarassmentComplaintsCommittee/General%20documents/Duncan_Hamilton.pdf)
More here: (https://www.thenational.scot/news/19130633.senior-snp-figures-dispute-nicola-sturgeon-claims-meetings-alex-salmond/)
More here: David Davis reveals all of the shenanigans: (https://www.heraldscotland.com/news/19165243.mps-hear-claim-sturgeon-chief-aide-interfered-v-bad-salmond-complaints-process/)
More here: (https://caltonjock.com/2022/05/19/sturgeons-special-advisers-are-enamoured-with-power-and-can-be-likened-to-a-sick-cancer-bleeding-off-the-efforts-of-hard-working-scots/)
More here: (https://caltonjock.com/2022/06/22/opportunistic-cia-are-able-to-recruit-sleepers-from-scottish-students-attending-north-carolina-university-anyone-come-to-mind/)
Liz Lloyd studied at the university.
12 replies on “Liz Lloyd “protected””
For those that know who was who, Liz Lloyd is the pivotal figure. If her role was ever made public, the whole edifice would crumble, and the fallout spectacular.
That’s why she’s protected (and will continue to be)
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We who wish justice will press on with our exchange of information in the hope that one day all will be revealed.
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Oh Maryhill, is wonderful…..
Police Scotland remain an embarrassing disgrace. It is no wonder that faith in Scotland’s police is at an all time low. When sturgeon and her cabal are toppled. I expect jail time for senior police officers.
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Sturgeon. whose heart lies with the ideals and aspirations of Northern England, as does Liz Lloyd, is rapidly preparing her exit early in 2024, leaving the SNP to shoulder the blame for all that has gone sour with the Scottish independence agenda under her charge. She will base herself in the USA for a time provided with a post with a major WOKE business, close to her personal heart.
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But…. To get that ‘dream job’ she needs an Employers reference from Boris/westminster.
Anyone who believes she is going anywhere near Independence, has not bn listening.
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Lloyd later confirmed at a meeting between her and Aberdein in LATE MARCH 2018, arranged again at Lloyd’s request, that she suspected the Scottish Government had received an official complaint about Mr Salmond. She said she did not know the full details of any potential complaint and had not alerted the First Minister to her suspicions about a potential complaint.
The late March part is a fabrication probably put out by the person herself with the help of her friends in the media. They have deliberately tried to muddy the waters and move the date from 09 MARCH 2018 to late March. It has been previously reported that this person wanted Geoff Aberdein to change his version of events. The question is did he? He testified under oath about the 09 MARCH date but that article you posted above Jock is said to have been from a statement he sent in to The Daily Record. I know of nobody who has ever seen that full statement.
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February 2018 was a period of friction between Liz Lloyd and the senior civil servants charged by Leslie Evans with the pastoral care of the 2 complainants one of whom had indicated that she no longer wished to proceed with her allegations following discussion of the matter with Liz Lloyd. The civil servant were not at all pleased with the intervention of Liz Lloyd. This left only one complainant.
Not long after, Liz Lloyd arranged to meet with Geoff Aberdein very early in March 2018, at which she advised him of developments including naming the person who had raised a complaint of sexual harassment against Alex Salmond. A revelation accepted as a true record of events in the report of the supposedly independent Irishman who was guarded in his report to the Scottish government. Lloyd’s motives for the unrecorded meeting and her revelations at it have never been investigated since Swinney refused to allow her to be questioned by the inquiry.
Did she intimate that Sturgeon and herself could make it all go away if Alex Salmond quietly retired from public life???
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That woman would later become one of the complainers in the criminal trial as David Clegg confirms in his book. At that point there were still the two complainers: Ms A and Ms B.
Your question about the meeting is one that ticks a lot of boxes. If Mr Salmond promised to stay away from frontline politics would those two complaints have been sat on and made to disappear? It is plausible. It is certainly something that they would do in my opinion. However you still have the problem of the FM, Liz Lloyd and John Somers being heavily involved in the new Procedure from the very start. The evidence shows that the FM & the Permanent Secretary were keen to rush through this new Procedure. So this is not something that the FM and her team caught wind of later in the process and got involved in to try and steer it down a dead end providing Mr Salmond told them what they wanted to hear. Mr Geoff Aberdein of course could answer so many of those questions and many more besides. Hence why his submission was not published .
Alex Salmond said that the FM acted at the 02 April meeting as if she was ignorant of the new Procedure. At that time of course he had no way of knowing about the roles of Liz Lloyd and John Somers in it and by extension the FM herself. She was not being honest with him.
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Lloyd and Somers clearly played both ends against the middle in their persistent interference imposing their control of the process of the agenda for change to the civil service complaints procedures. This included compiling the infamous letter from Sturgeon to Evans in which she specifically instructed her to include previous minsters in the revised process well knowing that Evans had bee told not to do so by the Cabinet Office in London. The need for a letter ordering Evans perhaps arose when she got cold feet and insisted on an instruction in writing from the First Minister to proceed with the inclusion of previous ministers.
Sturgeon waffled a bit when she was questioned at the inquiry about the Lloyd/Aberdein, 6/7 March 2018 meeting. Did she authorise it or not is the question?
Rules for SPADS are very clear. They can only act, including meeting people, with the prior authority of the First Minister and all events are to be recorded in a special “events” diary. Lloyds return trip and overnight stay in Aberdeen would also attract a claim from Lloyd, for travel and subsistence costs of around £120. Paid for by the Scottish taxpayer.
Rumour has it at the meeting Lloyd advised Aberdein of an intent by the First Minster and herself to transfer her career over to the political front but Alex Salmond, still a big hitter in the party and a key figure in the process. The move could only be successful if Alex Salmond supported it since Lloyd and himself had worked closely together for years. I suspect the answer to the enquiry fell on fierce ears hence subsequent events. Conjecture I know but!!!! why else would Lloyd divulge the name of a complainant and give early warning of the process of imminent action against Alex Salmond?????
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A response to your comments is worthy of an article in itself Jock.
In terms of the meetings of 06 & 09 MARCH 2018, when the FM had her ‘evidence’ session with the Committee she said that the other person at the meeting with Mr Geoff Aberdein had given her reassurances that what had been reported was not true. Basically her friend Mr Geoff Aberdein was ‘mistaken’ in his account according to her. She also repeatedly said that this person would be happy to give testimony in private. Disgracefully though she forgot to mention and none of the Committee members thought to point out to the watching audience or put it on the record, that this person would only do so providing the Committee members signed up to her demands for a private session. She wanted them to sign up to conditions that would have prevented them from asking certain questions of her. In the end enough of the Committee members declined to not do that and she did not end up testifying at all. Not even in private. Instead she gave two written submissions. That is scandalous.
Did the FM authorise the meetings? In my opinion she must have. After all it is the FM herself who stated under oath that the role of this person is to serve her interests. Mr Aberdein never set up the meetings. The other person did. That of course is crucial as if Mr Salmond had learned of complaints against him and got Mr Aberdein to try and find out more on his behalf then he would have needed to be the one who set up the meetings. It is important to remember that in between those two meetings Alex Salmond was sent the letter, via email, from the Permanent Secretary about the complaints on 07 MARCH 2018. As it was sent via email he would have got it the same day. The other person would have known this when the second catch-up meeting was arranged with Mr Geoff Aberdein on 09 MARCH 2018. Otherwise you just have to believe it is all just coincidental. The idea that this person just happened to arrange those two catch-up meetings either side of the letter being issued without knowing anything about it is for me not credible. Not when you can see that this person is very heavily involved in things in the SG even including interfering with FOI requests for which she has absolutely no authority to do so at all. How this individual has not been charged by the Police yet is beyond me. The FM and the other person must have set up the meeting with Mr Aberdein on 06 MARCH 2018 to find out if he was still in contact with Mr Salmond. He was not. Both accounts of this first meeting between this person and Mr Aberdein, according to what is written in the Hamilton Report, state that the complaints against Mr Salmond were not discussed at it. This other person then went away from the first meeting and must have fed back to her boss and the Permanent Secretary that Mr Aberdein was not in contact with Alex Salmond and they could use him as a contact at which point it must have been agreed amongst them to send the letter to Mr Salmond the very next day. Then another catch-up meeting was arranged by this person in order to discuss the complaints with Mr Aberdein. This is something that Mr Aberdein testified under oath that he found strange. It is. Who on earth arranges another catch-up meeting just a few days after the first one? It was done specifically to discuss the complaints.
As to your last question, Jock.
By the time of the second meeting on 09 MARCH 2018 Alex Salmond had already been notified of the anonymous complaints against him by the two women (Ms A & Ms B). Of course the other person at the meeting should not have known anything about this at that time but they did.
Why would someone who would make a complaint herself (Thanks to the Crown Office and mainstream media for spelling this out to people) against Alex Salmond want to provide him with information about the complaints in the first place? It makes no sense. Unless at that point in time they were not a complainer and only later on in the process made up their allegations. If that is true and it is the truth as the evidence shows, and the Crown Office itself makes crystal clear to people with their forced retrospective redactions on Salmond’s submission, this means initially they would have engaged in actions and revealed important information to Mr Aberdein and Mr Salmond that they would later come to regret and try to hide. This is exactly what has happened. The Crown Office and media has tried to do this on behalf of the woman involved.
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In accordance with written procedures governing their behaviour Spad’s working to the Scottish government are not allowed to break wind without first gaining the approval of the First Minister. It follows therefore that power over and control of all events is remitted to Nicola Sturgeon, witnessed in her letter formally instructing Evans to include previous ministers in the revised procedure and her tasking of Lloyd to arrange and attend a number of meetings with Aberdein through the month of March 2018. Even if only 10% of the allegations levelled against her are true Sturgeon should have resigned. Her career will be blighted forever and she will face the same chants, “the witch is dead” as Thatcher did on her demise. But meantime investigations need to be pursued so that the Scottish public can be provided with an honest record of events.