Sturgeon – the inside agent who callously hampered Scotland’s aspirations for independence

Nicola Sturgeon

Her position as leader confirmed Nicola addressed an audience in an auditorium packed to the gunnels with many thousands of members all fully committed to the cause of independence and expecting a rallying call to renew the fight for freedom from their leader. But they were to be disappointed.

She used her acceptance speech as First Minister to reassure her Unionist opponents her administration would be more than just a vehicle for constitutional campaigning. It would provide good government for all Scots always fully operating within the rules put in place by Westminster

She dwelled longest on her achievement of becoming the first woman to lead a Scottish Government. Her election showed “the sky’s the limit” for women and girls across the country, she told the audience before then saying:

“But it is what I do as First Minister that will matter more – much more – than the example I set by simply holding the office.”

Then, Looking up towards her niece Harriet, eight, in the gallery, she added:

“She doesn’t yet know about the gender pay gap or under-representation or the barriers, like high childcare costs, that make it so hard for so many women to work and pursue careers. My fervent hope is that she never will; that by the time she is a young woman, she will have no need to know about any of these issues because they will have been consigned to history. If, during my tenure as First Minister, I can play a part in making that so, for my niece and for every other little girl in this country, I will be very happy indeed.”

She had set her priorities for the future. The fight for independence was to be continued but within the limits of responsible governance. But her primary mission was to advance the cause of women.

What followed was a media frenzy in which Nicola was feted by women’s rights organisations worldwide including invitations to visit the USA and address female leaders and human rights activists the UN. She would become the new “Angela Merkel” and inspire women to a better future in politics and business.


Ruthlessly exercising a policy of narrowly focused nepotism across all aspects of its organisation and management the SNP leadership and the NEC, have in post, in paid employment MP’s, MSP’s, Councillors, special advisors and admin staff in excess of 1,500 persons. Many of these individuals have voting rights in the Party and enjoy the largesse without which they would be out of politics in a jiffy due to their incompetence.

SNP Leadership campaigns

Julie Hepburn (member) who was defeated by Keith Brown in her bid for the post of Deputy Leader of the Party said that the SNP’s NEC needed to be more effective, transparent and accountable and the attention given to the campaigns of the candidates encouraged debate between Party members who called for a rethink on how the Party was run.

The main thrust from the regions being complaints that the running of the party was overly structured around Nicola Sturgeon, her husband, the SNP chief executive Peter Murrell and the NEC.

The SNP Eastwood branch at conference, suggested that “improvements were needed” to give members as many opportunities as possible to formulate policy and question elected representatives.

It advanced the argument by tabling the amendment “Conference calls on the NEC to bring forward constitutional amendments to restore the National Council as a forum for policy-making and scrutiny.”.

The response from Keith Brown, the newly appointed Depute Party Leader, appeared to be positive when he later convened and chaired a Party Governance Review Group.

Membership of which included Doug Daniel, Julie Hepburn and Jamie Szymkowiak, Dr Eilidh Whiteford, Kaukab Stewart, and Shona Morrison.

Numerous calls for the final report to be published were ignored but a statement was finally issued saying: “there wasn’t “significant demand to reintroduce a National Council.” End of matter. No change.

This prompted numerous negative comments from readers of the National. Reader- User ID: 1036134 wrote:

I think the biggest message for SNP members from this whole NEC debacle is that the party are taking our loyalty and membership fees for granted.

I’m not a post referendum member, I’ve been kicking about since just after Tony Blair took us into an illegal war.

Everything I left the Labour Party for, I am now recognising in the SNP. Nepotism – how many couples, including the ultimate power couple at the very top, are in positions of power within the party/government.

We have selection processes for candidates for elections, but most of us know that actually, we have little say.

The party parachute in their preferred candidate and put all their resources behind them and now they have gone even further by inventing new rules to stop people from standing if they don’t want to resign their MP position and out all their support team out of a job.

The irony being that less than a year ago, Daddy Smith did just that, holding onto his MEP position and being parachuted in to Stirling for the GE.

This is what happened to the Labour Party.

True political activists, the very people who live, work and socialise in the areas and communities they would represent and now no longer sexy enough, so don’t get encouraged to put themselves forward, and if they do, they rarely pass vetting so the SNP handpicked candidate goes forward unopposed.

Serial candidate the unelected Julie Hepburn will most surely have her eye on a seat too, and I’m sure her SNP minister husband Jamie will be using his leverage to make sure that happens.

This is happening in front of our eyes, and they just don’t care.

Exactly what happened with New Labour.

They have never recovered and can’t get the talent into their party because the people who would have joined Labour, joined the SNP instead and are filling up the list and constituency places where real SNP people should be.

Comment: Ruthlessly exercising a policy of narrowly focused nepotism across all aspects of its organisation and management the SNP leadership and the NEC, have in post, in paid employment MP’s, MSP’s, Councillors, special advisors and admin staff in excess of 1,500 persons. Many of these individuals have voting rights in the Party and enjoy the largesse without which they would be out of politics in a jiffy due to their incompetence.


The only game in town – North Ayrshire Council – Sturgeon-Evans and the PFI Scandal

A contract was signed by North Ayrshire Council (NAC) for a PPP/PFI deal to build 4 schools. The council is now paying £1million a month to service the debt, and will be until about 2038.

At the time and leading up to its signature there were concerns amongst councillors about lack of transparency and procedures. A police investigation was launched in 2006 and “found no criminality”.

But the investigative skills of reporter Campbell Martin exposed clear evidence casting doubt as the probity of the bidding procedure (one of the two competitors was clearly a shell company created to give impression of multi-bidding. So there was no competition. The police missed the obvious!!! Did they really investigate as they claimed they had?

Campbell Martin’s exposure rattled cages in the council and wider afield and in February 2018, the Council, despite an amount of obfuscation and delaying tactics by senior Council officers asked the police to investigate the allegations again.

Feedback from the police revealed nothing new. Reporter Campbell Martin submitted a number of Freedom of Information requests to the police which went unanswered. And despite a formal intervention from the Data protection ombudsman to release full details of their investigations not a lot was released

But the ever dogged Campbell Martin kept on digging and finally revealed a “can of worms” so rotten even Sturgeon would not take the bait.

A bitter pill for the taxpayer to swallow was the action of a senior civil servant member of the government’s PFI team responsible for the imposition of the then Coalition government’s PFI policies

She convened a meeting with North Ayrshire Council councillors and stonewalled it shutting down any questioning revealing little information of any consequence. The civil servant was Leslie Evans!!!


In the decade since Humza Yousaf entered Holyrood he has established himself as the Forrest Gump of Scottish politics, surfacing at a department every time it was bedevilled by controversy, misfortune or error

The early years

Humza Yousaf was born on 7 April 1985 in Glasgow, Scotland. He enjoyed a trouble free lifestyle being privately educated at Hutchesons’ Grammar School, a fee paying independent school in Glasgow then going on to study Politics at the University of Glasgow, graduating with an MA in 2007.

He left university to work as a parliamentary assistant for a number of MSPs and has been financed from the public purse ever since. He has no experience of work outside the public sector.

In 2008, he took part in the International Visitor Leadership Program, a professional exchange sponsored by the US secret service and run by the US State Department.

In May 2011 he entered the Scottish Parliament as an additional member for the Glasgow region and was appointed Parliamentary Liaison Officer to the office of the First Minister.

On 5 September 2012, he was appointed Minister for External Affairs and International Development.

When Nicola Sturgeon became First Minister in November 2014, she appointed him Minister for Europe and International Development.

Transport Minister

On 18 May 2016, he was promoted Minister for Transport and the Islands and was at the centre of controversay and public criticism over the poor performance of ScotRail, with its trains facing severe delays, cancellations and overcrowding.

Sturgeon was called upon to sack him over his shambolic handling of transport after the prolific Twitter-using Transport Minister admitted he knew nothing about his brief as he tried to defend his failings.

He was quizzed by MSP’s at Holyrood over his administration’s handling of the beleaguered network amid stalled projects and declining services after it emerged the bill for rail upgrades had rocketed by £379 million.

The intervention became necessary when a report from quango Transport Scotland revealed the cost of five schemes had risen to £1.5 billion from £1.1 billion.

The transport workers union Aslef called for Mr Yousaf to be sacked amid a growing crisis on the railway network.

Aslef general secretary Mick Whelan said: “The Scottish government response to the rail crisis has been pathetic. “Transport Minister Humza Yousaf has stood by while Abellio Scotrail takes Scotland’s passengers and taxpayers for a ride.

Cabinet Secretary for Justice..

On 26 June 2018, Sturgeon rewarded failure and promoted him to the Scottish Cabinet to serve as Cabinet Secretary for Justice (without holding a mandatory Law degree).

His first flagship policy was his controversial Hate Crime and Public Order (Scotland) Bill, which he promised would streamline existing legislation as well as add additional protections to persecuted minorities while maintaining rights to freedom of speech and freedom of expression.

The bill was heavily criticised by the Catholic Church, the National Secular Society as well as writers, and in September 2020 he was forced to radically amend it removing prosecution for cases of unintendedly stirring up hate, which could theoretically include libraries stocking contentious books.

In October 2020, he went back on his word saying that the exception to the Public Order Act 1986 allowing people to use otherwise illegal language in their own homes should be abolished.

SNP veteran Jim Sillars described the bill as “one of the most pernicious and dangerous pieces of legislation ever produced by any government in modern times in any part of the United Kingdom”.

On the 10th June 2020, Humza Yousaf, MSP and Justice Secretary of the Scottish Parliament, held a speech in which he complained about racism in Scotland and that the majority of people in positions of power in the education, healthcare and justice sectors being white, although he failed to mention that 98% of the people in Scotland are white and this will be a contributing factor. (

His social media shenanigans on Twitter got him into several scrapes when he was Justice Secretary.

He rushed to slam Rangers football players on Twitter for being filmed supposedly making sectarian chants – a video which was subsequently shown to be a fake, for which Yousaf refused to apologise.

The rush to judgement which was all the more troubling in light of his responsibility for the Scottish prosecution service.

The malicious prosecution of Rangers Football Club Directors was the illegal prosecution of innocent men in Scotland by the Crown Office and the Procurator Fiscal Service, with taxpayers being hit with a £51million and rising compensation bill with every penny being taken from front-line services.

A senior police officer who abused his power resigned, and a sheriff who abused his power is also resigning. Sturgeon and Yousaf the Cabinet Secretary for Justice remain silent on a scandal that contaminates Scottish justice.

Cabinet Secretary for Health and Social Care

The SNP was returned to government in the 2021 Scottish Parliament election and he was appointed Cabinet Secretary for Health and Social Care.

He disappointed the public with his response to the Covid pandemic with a botched attempt to grab a headline when he announced that ten children up to the age of nine had been admitted to Scottish hospitals in the previous week “because of Covid”.

Professor Steve Turner, Scotland officer for the Royal College of Paediatrics and Child Health, contradicted him and said that children’s wards were “not seeing a rise in cases with Covid” and added that the children in question had been hospitalised for other reasons.

Yousaf apologised for causing “any undue alarm”.

In July, the World Health Organisation concluded that six out of Europe’s ten virus hotspots were in Scotland.

Tayside topped the list with 1,002 cases per 100,000 head of population.

The Scottish Government was accused of being ‘missing in action’ after it emerged that First Minister Nicola Sturgeon, Deputy First Minister John Swinney and Yousaf himself were all away on holiday at the time.

Yousaf said he had promised to take his stepdaughter to Harry Potter World, tweeting that: “Most important job I have is being a good father, step-father & husband to my wife and kids”.

In September 2021, the average waiting time for an ambulance in Scotland soared to six hours and his response was to urge the public to “think twice” before calling the emergency services.

Opposition politicians and the public criticised his offhand remark as “reckless messaging that could put lives at risk” and instead urged people to ignore him and call an ambulance if they thought they needed one.

Following reports of elderly Scots dying whilst waiting for an ambulance to arrive, he asked the Ministry of Defence for help and soldiers from the British Army were deployed to drive ambulances.

Audit Scotland concluded that 500 people died in Scotland in 2021 due to delayed access to emergency treatment.

Covid & PPE scandals

Haraldur Agustsson the CEO of Globus (Shetland) is a member of the notorious Tory dining club “The Leaders Group”. His company donated £400,000 to the Conservative Party since 2016, won a £93.8 million contract for the supply of FFP3 respirators.

The value of the contract being equivalent to the total revenue of the company over the past two years.

In 2019, the company turned over £50 million, following a £45.8 million turnover in 2018.

The UK Government awarded the deal without going to competitive tender, taking advantage of an EU loophole that allows governments to procure supplies rapidly during an emergency. None of the contracts cited in this article went to competitive tender.

Globus (Shetland) also arranged its subsiduary Alpha Solway’s partnership with the Scottish Government which began in 2020 when, albeit with no previous experience in making masks for healthcare use, the company received an order worth £53 million for 232 million surgical masks and 2 million visors to meet demand for Scotland’s health and social care sectors.

Globus saw spectacular growth in 2020 and 2021, such that the company’s valuation was put at more than £1 billion and its Alpha Solway subsidiary experienced an explosive revenue rise for the 12 months ending in May 2021 of over 420%, with pre-tax profits soaring by nearly 540 per cent, an increase from 2019 of over £23.5 million!

How did the Scottish experiment with transparent masks progress?

From a financial point of view, there is a equally disappointing and depressingly predictable picture.

In a press release in 2021 it was claimed that only 10 per cent of the masks had been distributed, leaving a further 2,070,000 in storage cupboards somewhere or destroyed.

An ending similar to that which Yousaf presided over earlier in the Covid crisis when half a million masks past their expiry date had to be withdrawn from NHS Scotland’s stockpile?

This represented, conservatively, a possible waste of public funds to the tune of £4.5Million, money that might have been spent on employing 130 nurses for a year.

And there is no hard evidence that a single life has been saved by the use of these masks; in fact, the very lack of PR by politicians or health executives since their unveiling suggests strongly that there have been no patient – or staff – benefits whatsoever.

Steerpike of “The Spectator” wrote:

“No man has blundered more regularly than Humza Yousaf. In the decade since his election to Holyrood he has established himself as the Forrest Gump of Scottish politics, popping up at a department every time it is bedevilled by controversy, misfortune or error. The botched launch of his much-vaunted Covid app is just the latest in a series of scandals which have stalked him through his years in public life.

Sturgeon’s resignation

Following the announcement of Nicola Sturgeon’s intention to resign as leader of the SNP and First Minister of Scotland, a leadership election was triggered and on 18 February 2023, he declared his candidacy to succeed Sturgeon.

At his campaign launch, He firmly backed the Gender Bill and gay marriage including the pursuit through the courts of the SNPs controversial gender legislation, despite it being a sticking issue for many faith groups including Islam.

The Self-ID policy would allow someone who is trans to hide their biological sex, a significant challenge for those who follow faiths that require distance between men and women.

It is feared that single-sex sports classes, swimming sessions and other services will no longer be an option for women who are not allowed to have physical contact or be alone with men regardless of gender identity.

During the committee stage of the Bill, the concerns of Orthodox Jews, Muslims and Sikhs were heard in relation to healthcare and single-sex spaces, where again, these individuals would require health services to provide a biologically female professional, or there is a risk of the community would not seek healthcare.

The Indian Council of Scotland claimed the Indian community will not feel safe if Humza Yousaf became First Minister. The move was backed up by the Muslim Council of the UK. A spokesman said:

“We as a community do not feel safe with Yousaf as the First Minister in Scotland. The Indian community – is a community of all faiths that includes Hindu, Muslim, Sikh, Christian, Buddhist, and Judaism. Our community is law-abiding, hard-working, and proud of our country. Yousaf attacked a nursery publicly and has now walked away without apology. Surely, his integrity must be called into question? He stoked up racial tensions in the Indian Hindu community, and this is not acceptable. Yousaf has been incompetent in every role that he served in from Justice to Transport and now Health. If he was the First Minister, it would be an economic disaster for Scotland. How can we have such a person as First Minister”?

Yousaf also previously avoided a key vote on gay marriage claiming that he could not avoid discussing the case of a Scot on death row in Pakistan but it was revealed that he requested a meeting with the Consul on the day of the vote, thereby creating a clash only two days after being told to be in parliament for the vote.

On Twitter when he was asked why he missed the vote, he responded saying:

“Meeting Pakistan Consul discussing Scot on death row accused under Blasphemy Law not one could/want avoid.” But Mr Ashgar was sentenced to death for blasphemy eight days after the meeting meaning his “death row” status was not known at the time the meeting was set up.

Personal life

Marriage One

Yousaf was married to Essex-born former SNP employee Gail Lythgoe from 2010 to 2016.

Lythgoe, a graduate teaching assistant at Glasgow University’s law school, was convener of the SNP’s student wing from 2010 to 2012 and sat on the SNP’s ruling national executive.

She was also a parliamentary assistant to SNP MSP Joan McAlpine, and worked at the Yes Scotland campaign in the 2014 referendum.

The split was not made public and only only emerged after Yousaf blamed it when he was fined £300 and had six penalty points added to his driving licence, after being caught by police driving a friend’s car without insurance.

Pleading guilty to the offence he said the incident was the result of stress brought about by his personal circumstances during his separation”.

Yousaf said the final split with his wife was amicable but since then she has left the SNP and actively urged people to vote for the Scottish Greens in the local election instead of the SNP. She wrote: Glasgow needs diversity not cult-like voting habits, vote green.”

Marriage two

In 2019, he married Nadia El-Nakla, a divorcee with one child and fathered a child with her.

He and his second wife had a case of discrimination upheld on technical grounds in the admission policy of a Dundee children’s nursery, who had refused to admit their child but it was found to be administrative issues rather than discrimination and they did not pursue the matter due to negative public feedback.

Nadia El-Nakla wife two

was previously married to Fariad Umar, an IT expert who in November 2015 suspected his wife of cheating on him and used computer software to examine her mobile phone history uncovering her affair with a fellow SNP member, local Councillor Craig Melville.

Of more concern to him, other than the affair was a string of vile racist texts the councillor had allegedly sent to his wife and he emailed some of them to the local SNP office and other politicians in December of that year, complaining about Melville’s alleged behaviour.

A response was not forthcoming from the SNP for over 2 years but finally following police intervention Melville appeared in Dundee Sherrif Court in January 2018, charged over the offensive messages.

In his evidence Faraid told the court he was so disgusted by the messages allegedly sent: “Initially, I was only thinking about the affair – but later I thought that someone in his elected position shouldn’t have these views so I sent them to MSPs and his bosses.

After what I had discovered, I thought he may not be giving the community the best. I thought it was serious so I left his bosses to investigate.”

Asked by prosecutor Joanne Smith what the party chiefs’ reaction was, he added: “No one has ever come back to me to say what was happening. I’m still waiting for an answer.”

Earlier, Fariad told the court he checked his wife’s text messages while she was sleeping because he thought she was having an affair.

He quickly became suspicious of an apparent conversation she had with her best friend Karen.

He said: “The language wasn’t what Karen would use so I checked the number with one I had for her on my phone and they were different.

When I called the Karen on my wife’s phone, a man answered.

I immediately hung up and confronted Nadia and she played down the relationship.

I then used the data recovery software to download all her deleted messages and discovered the racist texts I found concerning.

I didn’t like the messages at all because in some he was referring to God. I wasn’t happy with what I was reading.”

Fariad said he downloaded the texts onto a disc that was handed to police investigating a seperate allegation of an incident at the city’s mosque – a matter that was never brought to court.

Ms Smith asked him: “If it was suggested that you somehow manufactured or fabricated these messages, what would you say to that?”

He replied: “I’d say that’s a lie.”

Melville, 37, who resigned his post as a Dundee City councillor and aide to SNP MP Stewart Hosie over the allegations, is alleged to have sent the texts to Nadia on the two days after the 2015 Paris terror attacks.

The texts to Nadia El-Nakla – an aide to Health Minister Shona Robison – included one describing a Muslim youth worker in Dundee as a “horrible ct” and another saying “I just f***g hate your religion”.

One text allegedly read: “It’s not personal I just f*g hate your religion and I’ll do all in I’m life do defeat your filth.”

Another text said: “And in your favour we live in an uneducated left lift loopy left wing society who is more interested in claiming benefits and being ignorant to the threat of your horrible disease which is a make believe **** in the sky. “Horrible murdering Islamic *****.”

Another text said: “And Muslim politicians in the UK have a duty to speak out and educate. “That should be their number one priority, not staged photos taking refugees off boats and writing patronising messages of support.”

Earlier, the court heard Nadia admitting the affair with Melville.

She said she deliberately changed his name on her phone to Karen to avoid suspicion as they were calling and texting each other so much.

She said: “I would delete messages from Craig so my husband wouldn’t see them.

I had his name stored under the name of Karen because he messaged me all the time.

“My husband would be suspicious because we messaged constantly throughout the day.

“I showed the racist text messages to a friend on the Monday who was also a friend of Craig’s. I asked him, ‘I know people get drunk but is this a bit far or what?’

“I felt the messages were a wee bit harsh – but people say and do things when they’re drunk they don’t actually mean.”

The court also heard from Detective Constable Paul McIlravey who confirmed that no racist messages were actually recovered from Nadia’s phone and the only evidence provided to him was the CD given to him by Fariad.

Melville, of Marlee Road, Dundee, denied a charge under the Criminal Justice and Licensing (Scotland) Act, which is alleged to have been aggravated by religious prejudice.

Court documents allege that between November 13 and 15, 2015, at Marlee Road, Dundee, he behaved in a threatening and abusive manner towards El Nakla.

Prosecutors say he behaved in a way “likely to cause a reasonable person fear and alarm” by sending a series of messages that “contained threatening, abusive and derogatory remarks regarding Muslims”.

Guilty but appealing

Ex-SNP member Melville, 37, was found guilty of sending “reckless rather than threatening” racist texts to El-Nakla.

He was convicted of sending hateful messages to Nadia – who was also a political colleague – in which he blamed “horrible murdering Islamic *” for the Paris terrorist attacks in 2015.

After a three-day trial at Dundee Sheriff Court, Sheriff Scott Pattison found Melville guilty of the charge and fined him £1000.

However, the former politician is challenging his conviction at the Court of Criminal Appeal in Edinburgh.

Melville had denied sending a number of texts to Nadia that contained threatening, abusive and derogatory remarks regarding Muslims between November 13 and 15, 2015.

He also denied behaving in a threatening or abusive manner likely to cause fear or alarm, and that the offence was aggravated by religious prejudice.

During the case, Nadia told the court they had texted each other as news of the Paris attacks broke on November 13.

She said at that point Melville was calm but he became angry the following night and sent the texts.

One text read: “It’s not personal I just f hate your religion and I’ll do all in I’m life do defeat your filth. (sic)” Another said: “If I had a gun, I’d shoot a Muslim but I’m not brave enough.”

Asked by fiscal depute Joanne Smith how she felt about the texts, Nadia replied: “I was upset, I was confused and upset. He was very drunk and he wasn’t making any sense. The next day he called and apologised.”

She described their relationship as “friends” at the time the texts were sent. Nadia said her husband had taken her phone after discovering a text from Melville and had downloaded 14,000 pages of information, including many deleted texts.

Solicitor Douglas McConnell told the court after the verdict that Melville had since lost his job as environment convener on Dundee City Council. His political career was said to have also been destroyed and he was having to rebuild relationships with his family.


A warning – the SNP leadership aided by Aberdeen’s LGBTQ activists  manipulated the Party membership into submission so they could implement their master plan to reform Scottsih society

2021: Control freak’ Sturgeon’s ‘Stalinist power grab’

Nicola Sturgeon and SNP party chiefs tightened their grip on power with sweeping reforms to the Party’s top brass of management.

The SNP National Executive Committee (NEC), the highest decision-making body for the party, was slimmed down from 42 to 32.

An immediate consequence was that around half of the party’s regional officers representing thousands of members across hundreds of branches across Scotland were neutered.

The move sparked fears over the lack of scrutiny the membership will have from members in future following.

In a draft paper, the SNP leadership said:

“Feedback from our consultation highlighted the need for urgent further reform of the NEC, not least from those with experience of NEC membership.”

Former SNP member Kenny MacAskill, now an Alba Party MP, branded the move as a “power grab” by party chiefs saying:

“The SNP has gone from being one of the most democratic political parties to being one of the most autocratic. This Sturgeon power grab is just the latest example and one of which any Stalinist would be proud. All power in the SNP is concentrated in the hands of two people. Its leader and its chief executive are of course married to each other. This unhealthy dynamic does not allow criticism or dissent and this move is designed to remove the last vestiges of democracy from the SNP and to ensure the NEC is nothing more than a rubber stamp for the leader and chief executive. It does this by changing the balance away from those elected by the members and towards those appointed.”

George Kerevan former SNP MP for East Lothian provided a damming analysis of what has happened to the SNP after many years in office

The shift to the right in policy terms has been accompanied by the rise of a powerful Party bureaucracy. The policy is made by employed special advisers rather than members and Corporate lobbyists have easy access to ministers.

With success in Westminster elections, a large number of MPs and their staff have become dependent on our opponents (the UK State) for salaries and pensions and there is a powerful system of patronage and a career ladder to keep aspiring high flyers in line and ensure their loyalty.

The Party HQ and the Leadership now have a deeply ingrained disdain for members and especially for the volunteers who run the branch and constituency networks. Associated with this is the large cohort of MPs and MSPs, their energy perhaps sapped by the routine work of representing individual constituents, whose focus and drive appear suppressed by a combination of healthy salaries and a position of relative impotence in relation to the tiny select Leadership group. The rest of the article can be found here: (

An example of leadership nepotism

Benefitting from the “nod and a wink” politics now so prevalent in the SNP is Joshua Mennie, a protected candidate who gains that security through his claims that he suffers from Tourette’s syndrome!!

At the time the Finance minister, McKay, resigned and Kate Forbes came to the rescue with an excellent presentation of the budget, the zealous monomaniac and ferocious tweeter Mennie ignored the reality of McKay being forced to resign for grooming a child to confront an imaginary one.

The church-going minister tipped to be the next Finance Secretary, who believed, as the bulk of the Party membership also does, that the legal definition of male and female ought not to be changed without informed public discussion and agreement.

He tweeted:

“The last thing our party needs is Kate Forbes climbing the ladder when she has such questionable views on equality. I’m always concerned when politicians conflate their personal religious beliefs into their work-life to the detriment of others,”

Jan 2021: NEC Meeting hijacked by LGBTQ activists

The LGBTQ group proposed that the SNP’s eight regional lists for the Scottish parliamentary election should include in top place, either a *BAME or a disabled candidate.

Four regions would be allocated a BAME person and the other four a disabled person.

The proposal carried the rider that disabled status should be by self-identification with no confirmatory checking being carried out.

It was debated at some length since many members believed it would be illegal to adopt the proposal under equalities law.

The matter was deferred and referred to the Party’s legal counsel, Jonathan Mitchell QC who warned that the policy was legally dubious and open to challenge in the courts and any case brought by a person disadvantaged by the rule would probably succeed, and cost the SNP tens of thousands of pounds in legal expenses.

But the LGBTQ group insisted the proposal should be decided by the NEC and its LGBTQ Chair, Kirsten Oswald allowed the matter to be put to a vote.

The vote was tied and it was expected that in compliance with accepted practice the Chair would cast her vote for retention of the status quo.

She didn’t and passed the motion placing the Party at great risk of legal and costly claims of discrimination.

Three members announced conflicts of interest before the vote and should have recused themselves from the vote.

They were:

Fiona Robertson declared that she intended to seek the top spot on the North-East list as a disabled candidate who was in attendance as a substitute for an NEC member who was unable to attend. Did not recuse herself from the vote.

Graham Campbell, a councillor from Glasgow who declared his intention to stand on either the Glasgow or Lothian lists, both of which were to have their top spots reserved for BAME* candidates under the proposal. He did not recuse himself from the vote. His partner is SNP MP Anne McLauchlin.

Greg McCarra from the Association of Nationalist Councillors (who is neither disabled nor BAME) also declared he was seeking the nomination. He did recuse himself from the vote.

Candidates, all LBGTQ+ activists and self declared disabled were added to the protected list for the North East of Scotland including:

Fatima Joji

Christian Allard

Julie Bell

Nadia El-Nakla ( wife of Humza Yousaf)

Lynne Short

Gillian Al-Samarai

Joshua Mennie


This is why the polis are after Murrell

On 28th June, inside the bamboo cage-like structure that is the Scottish Parliament, Nicola Sturgeon announced her inevitable launch of ‘Indyref2’. The First Minister looked smitten with joy as she proposed her October 2023 plan for the second Scottish independence referendum, not even a decade after the failure of the first “once in a generation” attempt. Sturgeon launched into her pseudo-Braveheart speech by stating that, “The campaign to establish this Parliament was long and hard. It was rooted in the belief that self-government would improve the lives of those who live here. And so it has proved”.

However, those living in Sturgeon’s own constituency, which she has governed since 2007, may beg to differ. Glasgow Southside now has more children than ever before living in poverty (just under 50%) and a staggering 69% of children in Govanhill West (situated in Glasgow Southside) are now living in poverty — the highest figure anywhere in the whole of the United Kingdom. The devolved Scottish parliament, which has become the HQ of Scottish nationalism since its inception in 1999, deemed by Sturgeon to have improved the lives of all those living in Scotland, may have also missed the memo when it comes to drug deaths.

Scotland now has an all-time record of drug related deaths and possesses the highest rates in the whole of Europe with over 300 per million people. To put these shocking figures in context, collectively the rest of the UK has fewer than 100. Of course, for Sturgeon the blame for all this lies at the door of Westminster and has absolutely nothing to do with her or her idealistic party. However, her complicity is clear and the problem lies in her ideal. By consistently pushing for Scottish independence, the people of Scotland and their real problems are always second on the list of the First Minister’s priorities behind the SNP’s wet dream of a ‘free’ nation. This has yet again been exposed by the current scandal of the hidden and misspent funding of the party which Sturgeon and her peers are desperately attempting to sweep under the proverbial rug.

The entire fundraising section was similarly swept into the abyss

The SNP are currently under a police investigation for the fraudulent spending (or lack thereof) of £600,000, fundraised from independence supporters through the website ScotRef. This investigation (code-named ‘Operation Branchform’) has been ongoing since September 2021, when Police Scotland obtained a warrant authorised by the Crown Office for the acquisition of the financial documents of the party.

So where did this all begin? ScotRef was initially launched in March 2017. The site appealed for funding for the ‘Indyref2’ campaign and was accompanied by a video address from the First Minister. Was this website an official representation of the SNP? Well, yes, but not that they wanted you to know. Only a minuscule sentence in small print at the bottom of the page highlighted to the reader that this was official government business, with the site being “promoted by Peter Murrell on behalf of the Scottish National Party”. Things started to get sketchy after James Kelly of Scottish Labour requested the Electoral Commission formally investigate the SNP’s involvement in the site and their appeal for funds. Following Kelly’s appeal, Sturgeon’s cameo on the website was removed before the entire fundraising section was similarly swept into the abyss.

The SNP’s response to the growing speculation was equally dubious, stating that all the money raised on #ScotRef website is ringfenced to fight a future independence referendum. Whatever the party think ‘ringfenced’ means is certainly hard to understand, especially when their published 2019 accounts revealed that they had just £96,854 “cash in hand at bank” (down from £411,042 in 2018) and a “total net (liabilities) / assets” of £271,916 (down from £591,077 in 2018). So where did that £600,000 of ‘ringfenced’ money go?

There is clearly something going on. Three members of the party’s Finance and Audit Committee collectively resigned in 2021 after SNP Chief Executive Peter Murrell (also conveniently the husband of Sturgeon) refused them full access to the party’s books. Then came a resignation from the new National Treasurer Douglas Chapman in May 2021, stating that “despite having a resounding mandate from members to introduce more transparency into the party’s finances, I have not received the support or financial information to carry out the fiduciary duties of National Treasurer”. This was followed by Joanna Cherry resigning from the SNP National Executive Committee, citing a “number of factors”, which prevented her from improving, “transparency”, within the party. Sturgeon’s response to all this? The SNP’s funding is managed on a “cash flow basis” — ah yes, that historically trustworthy and sound financial management scheme. The party’s published 2021 accounts revealed that they spent over £600,000 refurbishing their offices, so maybe this is where some of that donated money for the hallowed second referendum went — after all, one cannot break free from the Union without a comfy desk chair.

It’s fair to say we Scots have a right to be passionately angry about all this missing money

As you peel back more layers of this corrupt onion, a wider conspiracy comes into view. The Crown Office are reported to have forcefully asked Police Scotland to change their wording of this investigation to a “fact-finding mission”, leaving the police, “stunned that the Crown was putting them in that position”. Why would the Crown Office try to understate the inquiry? Could it have something to do with the leader of the Crown Office being none other than the Lord Advocate, a prominent member of Sturgeon’s cabinet government? My tin-foil hat is twitching.

Couple this fiasco with the findings of Audit Scotland in March this year, who could not conclude where five billion pounds of Covid-19 funding (donated from those tyrants down in Westminster) was spent and the whole integrity of the SNP seems up for question. With drug deaths and child poverty at a record high and hundreds of independent businesses killed during the pandemic, it’s fair to say we Scots have a right to be passionately angry about all this missing money. The idea of Scotland leaving the United Kingdom with no Westminster funding, no currency and no economic security seems about as holey as Swiss cheese; especially when the proposed break is going to be overseen by a party who have about as much financial integrity as a pyramid scheme.

20 August 2022: Callum Clark:


the marginal nature of Flynn’s Aberdeen South seat – is why some predict that after leading the party at Westminster, he has his sights on the top job in Edinburgh.

The end is near

Ian Blackford watched the election of his successor Stephen Flynn via zoom, surrounded by his closest allies. And by his packed boxes. His imminent forced departure from the two-floor, wood-panelled suite of offices afforded to the leader of parliament’s third party, was a source of sadness and frustration. Nicola Sturgeon had made her own unhappiness clear to colleagues. For this brutal political hit job was a rare display of ill-discipline in her ranks. Public criticism of colleagues is explicitly banned in the Westminster group’s standing orders, but in private SNP MPs can be surprisingly vitriolic.

“What a c“, is one parliamentarian’s assessment of a colleague. “He’s an a**** and lazy”, is how a different MP sums up a fellow SNP politician. A nationalist who represents a large rural patch “has an ego the size of his constituency”. A lesser-known MP is “a zoomer… thick as two planks”. Wrangling these mixed talents is now the unenviable task of the SNP’s new Westminster leader Mr Flynn. His hurried election was not just the latest evidence of division within the party but also a clear sign of a generational shift.

The ‘hit job’

Flynn was the parliamentarian behind the coup and its main beneficiary, who never confronted Blackford directly.

Instead following months of wooing MPs and even after claiming he had “no intention of standing”, Flynn got his friend and fellow MP David Linden to do the dirty work.

Acting as emissary, Linden met Blackford’s chief whip and showed him a long list of names. The message: We have the backing of a majority of SNP MPs and would win a leadership challenge. Your move. “Even if he won by a handful of votes, Ian would be a dead duck,” a colleague said.

A conversation with Sturgeon, and her offer of a new role in her latest push for Scottish independence, helped Blackford finalise his decision.

The first minister’s frustration was not purely because of the loss of a trusted ally. But with multiple public service crises in Scotland and internal splits on trans legislation, Sturgeon had limited bandwidth to deal with further SNP drama. “She runs a f***ing government,” argued one MP. “The less she thinks about us the better.”

The new boss

When I meet Flynn for coffee a few days after his victory (he opts for an oat flat white), a smile flashes across his face when I ask about the coup. He continues with the tenuous claim that there was no such thing. As for Linden’s role in despatching Blackford, “I’m not aware of any list,” is his response.

Yet the new leader seemed confident in his abilities, and disarmingly relaxed about the challenges ahead. His debut at PMQs was performed without notes prompting plaudits from political commentators.

“I read a lot and feel confident in the Commons despite being shouted down,” he tells me. “It’s an engaging approach and it’s relatively uncommon, particularly for frontbenchers.”

In contrast, Rishi Sunak attends the weekly sessions armed with a ring binder of information, while Keir Starmer holds a sheaf of scripted questions.

“It looks like Stephen believes in some of that stuff,” argued a friend who is disparaging about Blackford’s career in financial services. “I’d rather that than a very rich banker talking about poverty.”

The Westminster group

Aside from his fledgling relationship with Sturgeon (“I’m sure we’ll catch up in the New Year – she’s been very supportive”), Flynn will need to manage the complex set of personalities among his own flock of MPs. “Everyone has a grievance,” said one parliamentarian.

Veteran MP Pete Wishart’s pointed resignation letter as he departed the SNP frontbench was striking precisely because such displays of division are rare in the party.

Beyond the back-biting, there is a larger problem, which some see as a long-running sore within the SNP Westminster group: Is it MPs or MSPs who are leading the charge for an independent Scotland? Who is the vanguard and who is the rearguard? It can lead to mixed messages for fragile egos according to one involved: “At Westminster, you’re made to feel like a demi-god. But return to Scotland and its local councillors and MSPs who wield the power.”

Flynn faces a paradox: He may now have the party’s biggest UK-wide media platform yet he possesses almost no power and there is zero prospect of that changing. Motivating forty-five parliamentarians with such a bleak outlook is difficult. Especially as polls suggest Scottish Labour is on the rise and therefore SNP losses are likely at the general election. A senior Scottish Labour figure claimed the party is now “competitive” in 15 seats including all seven held by the nationalists in Glasgow.

The special conference

Flynn is considered more impatient on independence than his predecessor, but he is tight-lipped when I raise the most significant event in 2023 for the SNP: Their special spring conference to discuss the party’s strategy on leaving the UK. After November’s Supreme Court ruling that a second referendum cannot happen without the permission of Westminster, Sturgeon announced a meeting would be held to discuss a de-facto referendum on independence.

Unlike the party’s annual conferences, which are usually carefully choreographed and drama-free, this event may be the moment when internal splits break out into the open.

Some of Ms Sturgeon’s cabinet ministers are privately critical of her current plan, with others arguing her campaign for independence has been neither urgent nor radical.

The shift

Discussions over the first minister’s future are almost endless, even if Sturgeon’s political eminence and iron grip on the SNP means she alone will choose the timing of her departure. The continuity of her presence at the top of Scottish politics means imagining a successor is difficult for many. It also means the pool of potentials is large.

Sturgeon has been in government in Edinburgh since the final weeks of Tony Blair’s premiership. After eight years in the job, she is Scotland’s longest-serving first minister, and that followed seven years as Alex Salmond’s deputy.

Mr Flynn was eleven when Ms Sturgeon was first elected to the Scottish Parliament. His deputy Mhairi Black was five-years-old. The SNP have been in government throughout their adult lives, and they are now part of a new generation.

And that – along with the marginal nature of Flynn’s Aberdeen South seat – is why some predict that after leading the party at Westminster, he has his sights on the top job in Edinburgh.

“That’s not my focus,” he claims. “My focus is getting us out of here. I’m not going to waver from that objective.” 2023 could be a year of major change within the SNP. If so, Mr Flynn is likely to play a significant part.

By Joe Pike, political correspondent, Sky News, 31 December 2022


Douglas Alexander – the Labour Party thug who screwed his fellow Scots should be rejected by the East Lothian voters

Blair’s Protégée Stuffs Scots

Following the 2005 General Election he enjoyed the confidence of Tony Blair and in 2006 he was promoted to the Cabinet as Secretary of State for Transport and Scotland.

At the time of the upcoming 2007 Holyrood Elections the Labour Government was in crisis. The Iraq invasion and the aftermath. Afghanistan a military and political disaster and Westminster scandals, (cash for honours) requiring Tony Blair to be formally interviewed by the police, gave warning of a humiliating SNP victory in Scotland.

Alex Salmond lobbied Westminster seeking that the election process, in all respects be transferred to the authority of the Scottish Parliament. This was refused and the duty was subsequently delegated to, “Wee Douglas” who would also run Labour’s electoral campaign in Scotland.

Elections to Holyrood, in 1999 and 2003 had, (preventing voter confusion) used two separate ballot papers for the constituency and regional lists.

Alexander and Scottish (Labour) government ministers decided that Local Council Elections would be held at the same time as the parliamentary election and both election selections would be printed on one ballot paper.

Civil servants and an independent marketing firm warned that the ballot forms would lead to confusion and a higher-than-average number of rejected votes.

The advice was ignored, Alexander and the governing, (Labour) party claimed their changes would prove to be extremely popular.

Civil servants and the, “Electoral Commission” were silenced.

In the election the SNP won by a single vote.

Alexander was hugely praised by Labour Party mandarins since he had just about “saved the day” for Labour.

The elections, were however badly tainted by a chaotic voting process, blamed on the Scottish Office’s design of ballot papers. 

In excess of 146,000 votes were declared void. The largest in electoral history.

Seventeen MSP’s were elected to Parliament with majorities lower than the number of spoiled ballots in their constituency.

There was a public outcry and, “Returning Officers” voiced their discontent about the election process.

Wee Alexander, “Scottish Secretary”, the accountable person that organized the elections, stated there would be a statutory review of the election under the auspices of the Labour Party loaded Electoral Commission.

Scots were outraged and demanded an independent inquiry. Tony Blair was forced to concede and an inquiry was commissioned.

Following an extensive, lengthy inquiry, an official report submitted by, Ron Gould, (a senior Canadian election official), heavily censured Alexander and the Labour Party stating that ministers in the Labour Scottish Government and at Westminster together with Mr Alexander’s political, “self-interested” moves, (as the Labour Party in Scotland’s election supremo), had abused their, “offices of state” making decisions about the election on “party political interest grounds”, with voters treated as an “after-thought.”

So be warned. Alexander and the Labour Party are akin to “snakes in the grass”. They care only for the Party. The voter is a means to an end.


Nepotism and corruption – Mhari Black misrules Renfrewshire

This article contains information about the emergence from the political shadows of Natalie Don a local councillor and admin assistant to MSP Derek MacKay who left office under a cloud in 2020.

She was selected as the SNP’s candidate for the  Renfrewshire North and West constituency in November 2020 and elected to office in the May 2021 Scottish Parliament election.  Salary £66,000 +pension+expenses+ office staff.

A councillor for Bishopton, Bridge of Weir and Langbank ward from 2017 she retained that office until the 2022 local council election. Assumed annual cost to taxpayerss £20,000.

She was also an admin assistant in the office of Derek Mackay MSP from 2017 to 2020. Salary between £25,000 – £45,000

Total income and on-costs between 2017-2022: £55,000 -£74,000

Mhari Black and Natalie Don

The nomination of Natalie Don was not universally approved within the constituency.

Press publicity attracted comments from a number of Renfrewshire readers. Namely:

12 Aug 2020: Comment from C.B.:

I just don’t agree with this “all-female” instruction. It’s MSPs of merit we need, not people thrust upon the electorate because of their sex.

12 Aug 2020: Comment from S.A.:

Ahhhh, an ideal candidate who meets the No.1 criteria in the SNP book of selection? Can we ask what Natalie Don’s life experiences are? What unique skills she is bringing to the Scottish Parliament & indeed the probable SG?

She has a degree in history, & to be fair one of my long time friends is a History Professor? I have an interest in this subject too. That aside, what commercial or business experience does this SNP Scottish parliamentary hopeful have to offer the already chocked chamber? Am I right to be concerned, that Ms Don, perhaps is yet another ‘Professional Politician’?

The political strata are already awash with ‘careerist’ politicians. You know the type? Went to uni, decided that hang working for a living, let’s get the public purse to fund my lifestyle? Remote from the proletariat, & their daily struggles to keep a roof over their head, feed, clothe, & bring up their children in a society that just doesn’t give a rats? Not that Ms Don will ever need to worry herself about things like that once she’s got Decko the sext pests, still warm seat, at Holyrood?..

12 Aug 2020: Comment from J.C.:

Sadly the SNP as a party ask their potential candidates to agree, before selection to being gagged from revealing any misconduct they may witness or encounter as a political appointee whilst in post. To me, the first thing to be sacrificed before climbing the greasy pole of politics is personal integrity?

I know I’m perhaps being unrealistic, in the forlorn hope of seeing an open & honest politician? Nevertheless, wouldn’t it be refreshing to hear a potential candidate actually tell it as it is, without reverting to meaningless slogans, or party ideology? I want my MSP to serve me, not a political party? After all, I, along with the rest of the electorate are their employers? We pay them that very comfortable salary, not the party they hold membership with?

I certainly will want to hear what my SNP sitting MSP has to tell me, other than an SNP rosette? I’ve already voted for over 1/4 of a century on that stance before changing to SNP? Up till now, after voting for them, their performance in Holyrood has been totally underwhelming?

I want to see the timeline for a vote for independence? I want the FM, to now hand the Covid crisis management over to one of her ministers! I want her to revalidate her commitment to independence, & what she intends to do when, her pleading with the lump of shaped lard, currently pretending to be the UK PM, tells her again & again NO?…. That approach isn’t, doesn’t, & will never work? Scotland is a nation not a county of England!

12 Aug 2020: Comment from KJ:

A friend of Marie Black, enough said.

S.A.: Commented:

But is Natalie Don the best, most experienced, multi-skilled, ideal candidate? She said she was working class! Well almost everyone in the district can claim to be working class? Brought up in a Council house? So was I? It was a nice Council house, in a good neighbourhood? But I do agree there is a dearth of working-class MSPs? Miss Don might have been able at one time to claim a working-class upbringing but that is very much in the past. Her education was completed at an excellent school, she has moved up in class and is now a middle class, white-collar worker. Indeed she is part of the upwardly mobile middle class. But the fact she is a close friend of Mhari Black shouldn’t even come into it? If the SNP, are relying on cronyism to punt candidates through the selection process (again), then they are entering the same dangerous place as SLAB found itself in? The electors should vote for a candidate they trust to do good works for them not someone who wears an SNP rosette.

Update: Lots of readers and many also wanted answers but nothing was forthcoming which prompted me to enquire further.

Robert Innes right

Natalie Don is resident in Bridge of Weir. This event occurred in the town in July 2010. Is this the same Robert Innes?

A resident of Bridge of Weir harassed at home by a group of yobs

Kenneth Horn of the Bridge of Weir snapped after months of harassment when yobs armed with weapons laid siege to his home. In the ensuing melee, he was hit over the head with a baseball bat. Paisley Sheriff Court heard how Horn and his family had been forced to endure a relentless campaign of terror and torment. He had previously reported numerous incidents to police and was “at the end of his tether” when a group armed with weapons appeared outside his home in Bridge of Weir’s Mimosa Road at 3.50am on March 28.

The stabbed man, Robert Innes had been socialising with friends in a neighbouring house and when Horn left his home at around 0400 hours to confront his attackers he joined the disturbance later claiming it was with the purpose of taking on a self-appointed role as “peacemaker”. But 22-year-old Innes ended up in a face to face confrontation with Horn, who was observed standing on a path holding a knife. As the pair drew close Horn prodded him on the left side of his chest with the knife and then fled. He ran to another house in the street where he asked the householder to hide the knife.

An ambulance was summoned and Innes was taken to Paisley’s Royal Alexandra Hospital with a one-centimetre puncture wound. The injury was dressed but did not require further treatment and he was kept overnight under observation.

Horn’s lawyer told Sheriff Susan Sinclair that he hoped to put the episode in perspective and revealed that his client’s house had been

“laid siege to and there had been numerous reports to the police of harassment and efforts were being made to have his family re-housed when the flashpoint occurred. He was acting under extreme provocation where armed youths had been hammering at his door and sincerely believed that his life was in danger that night and that the complainer was part of the attacking group.”

The lawyer further stressed that Horn had not gone out into the street armed but had been hit with the knife in question and had then been struck on the head with a baseball bat. The knife ended up on the ground after it had been discarded by one of the attackers, and he had retrieved it.

Horn was found guilty of assault and locked up for eight months after stabbing a man he thought was one of his tormentors.

From Innes Twitter posts:

In education: I didn’t get any standard grades at school (an ‘affluent’ school). I worked in retail and call centres for years after school and gained some great experiences. Decided to go back to college and then uni and graduated at the age of 28. Schools are not for everybody.
As a youth, I joined the army at 16. I personally hated it and left. It’s not for everyone and the other guys I was in with loved it. It shouldn’t be forced on anyone. This talk of forcing national service on young people should be nipped in the bud now.

Comment: His LinkedIn profile only states he attended college. No mention of any qualification. Even providing that he did gain a qualification of sorts it is difficult to accept he would be experienced enough politically to provide advice and assistance to Mhari Black the holder of a distinction in politics from a grade 1 university.

On illegal drug-taking:

17 Jun 2019: RossThomson tweeted: I’ve visited a drug consumption room to see it in operation for myself. Opening them in the UK will be the thin end of the wedge. We need to ensure people end their addiction not simply manage it. Consumption rooms won’t cut heroin abuse and deaths.

Innes commented: Meanwhile back in reality. Like many people, I had a family member who used heroin outside of a DCR in front of me as a child. I have kept edgy in alleys and sat in drug dens while people o.d. These safe spaces would mean other youngsters wouldn’t have this kind of experiences.

On nepotism

Innes tweeted: You know you can be pro independence and also be against transphobia, homophobia, racism and bigotry while at the same time be against blatant careerism taking over your party. Comment: Ironic surely!!

Robert Innes has worked as one of Mhari Black’s Research Assistants at Westminster since around the beginning of 2016.

He is standing for election as a councillor for Houston, Crosslee and Linwood and his campaign was heavily promoted on Twitter and other media over the weekend and on other days by Miss Black and Natalie Don, the local MSP who gushingly declared him to be a local based stalwart and potentially wonderful servant of the people.

But there are questions I need to ask and have answers to before I am able to advise those who read my blog whether to support his candidacy.

The blurb states he has been employed at Westminster and has resided in London, not Renfrewshire, from 2016, nearly 6 years, Is this correct?

Prior to his appointment, he was a student studying politics and psychology at the University of the West of Scotland between 2011 and 2016 meaning that he has never been in paid employment from the time of his birth until selected by Mhari Black and appointed by herself to the post of Research Assistant at Westminster on a salary between £35-£55 plus expenses. Is this assertion correct?

His profile lists him as the father of two children. Nicola Sturgeon enjoyed an extensive photo opportunity with a child Alisa Innes. It is evident from the publicity that Sturgeon was promoting the Renfrew MSP candidacy of Natalie Don who the accompanying article said was the child’s mother.

Is Robert Innes, Alisa’s father? I think the public has a right to know. since their combined financial income from the state, courtesy of the SNP probably exceeds £130,000 per annum.


Scandal -the transfer of BBC Scotland production to Mentorn was facilitated by the BBC and the offshore registered global equity fund, Vitruvian Partners

Tinopolis (PLC)

Not a lot of people know it but five billionaires and their corporations own and control around 80 per cent of the UK media providing them with the means and opportunity to maliciously influence and control political and cultural agendas shaping the knowledge, behavior and beliefs of the population effectively destroying free thinking.

Founded by Welshman, Ron Jones, in 1989, Tinoplis (PLC), based in Llanelli, Wales was established to make programmes for the Welsh language channel SC4.

It went public in 2005 and a year later it launched and won a hostile takeover of the much larger “Television Corporation”.

The acquisition of the company and its production teams at Mentorn and Sunset + Vine, (producers of Question Time and other BBC programmes) transformed the fortunes of the company overnight and 15 short years later it is one of the five aforementioned conglomerates.

The extraordinary expansion of the company from that time, was also made possible with the financial support of the BBC and the offshore registered global equity fund, Vitruvian Partners.

Jones has increased his influence and control of the media market in the UK growing his company to be a world leader serving the BBC and other media networks, broadcasters in the United Kingdom, United States and other countries worldwide producing reality shows, documentaries, infotainment, films, dramas, factual, lifestyle, comedy, game-shows, sports, education, skills, multi-lingual, marketing and communication, e-learning, and mobile-learning courses.

Its portfolio of programming is delivered to customers through its “Mediajet” platform, a cloud based digital media delivery network for distributing broadcast video and media files to multiple locations.

An address to the city of London financial market stated:

“The Tinopolis Group is one of the largest television content suppliers in the UK and a producer of programmes for many of the top networks in the US. The group’s portfolio of production companies includes global sports producer Sunset+Vine, Mentorn Media, Firecracker, Pioneer, Tinopolis Cymru, the recently launched Thunderclap Media, drama producers Daybreak Pictures and Fiction Factory, as well as A.Smith & Co and Magical Elves in the US. Tinopolis also has its own distribution arm, Passion.”

Ron Jones adding:

“Our success has been founded on the talent of our people, their creativity and their leadership. With Vitruvian’s investment and support over the past 9 years, we have made Tinopolis a leading player in our industry. Sunset+Vine has achieved remarkable growth to become, in its own right, a global company. To our original UK base we added two of the finest production companies in the US and with them some of the most creative people in US television. We are a private company owned by its management in both countries, optimistic for the future and determined to provide our people with new challenges and opportunities.”

The BBC – Tax Avoidance Links

The Canary revealed that BBC Question Time was linked to companies named in the Paradise Papers for offshore tax avoidance.

The programme’s production company, Mentorn Media, created in 2005, is a subsidiary company of the Tinopolis group.

Tinopolis had a majority shareholder called Vitruvian in place until 23 October 2017.

The private equity firm had purchased a 48% stake in Tinopolis in 2008 and was the ultimate controlling company named in the Paradise Papers – all while having been the ultimate owner of the Question Time producers.


Offshore Registration and Tax Avoidance – Vitruvian Equity

Forming part of its large portfolio of companies Vitruvian owned “OpenBet”, an online gambling software company through which it operates the “employee benefit trust”, a tax reduction scheme. The scheme is/was designed to provide employee benefits, such as shares and “cash payments”, through a tax jurisdiction such as Jersey much reducing the employee’s tax bill.

Is the BBC biased?: Testament of Bias


“Smoke and mirrors”, a hefty wedge of Scottish licence fee revenue is routinely transferred to a Welsh and international commercial enterprise which pervasively influences viewers through the retention and exercising of editorial control over production.

Many thousands of viewer complaints about a lack of a code of practice regarding selection criteria for participation in and the conduct of the “Question Time”, audience, have been advanced as examples of shoddy editorial work and programme management!!!

In each and every case complaints have been dismissed by the commissioning agent, the BBC, as unfounded. So much for impartiality!!!

Scottish production companies, wholly registered in Scotland, should be awarded contracts from BBC (Scotland) so that Scottish licence fee payers can be assured their financial contribution is being spent wisely retaining and developing Scottish workers and enterprises.

That was the commitment to Scotland by the BBC only a few years ago. But Scotland continues to be ripped off by franchise commitments entered into by the Westminster government and the BBC Trust.

An Anti-Scots Bias report was discussed in committee at Holyrood in 2014. It is worthy of study since many of the negative observations contained in it are still relevant 6 years later. So much for progress!!!