March organisers urge “we need to have control of our own currency” as crunch SNP conference vote approaches
- Organisers of an indy march in Glasgow on 4 May hope to bear record Edinburgh manifestation of 100,000.
- March comes at crucial time for independence movement as Brexit chaos deepens along with strategic debates in the movement.
- March will take place days after crunch Scottish currency vote at Edinburgh SNP conference.
ORGANISERS of a march for Scottish independence in Glasgow in May hope they will beat the record turnout for last year’s march in Edinburgh.
Estimates for the independence march in Scotland’s capital in October, the biggest ever pro-indy demonstration, range as high as 100,000, but organisers for the All Under One Banner (AUOB) group say they hope to beat that in Glasgow on 4 May.
Speaking to CommonSpace, Manny Singh of AUOB said: “We are hoping to beat Edinburgh, with over 100,000 people.”
He said that marchers would be coming to Glasgow from “across Scotland and from around the world” with people flying in from Australia, the United States, Canada and elsewhere.
The organisation has held large marches in Glasgow in previous years, but believe this year’s can be the biggest.
“We said 60,000 [in Glasgow] last year, some figures were higher,” Singh said.
This latest demonstration in support of Scottish Independence will follow previous routes, leaving Kelvingrove Park in the city’s West end at 1.30pm, and marching to Glasgow Green in the East of the city.
“The message is simple and it has not changed. Scotland must become an independent country, and Scotland needs to decide it’s own future,” Singh said.
“It doesn’t matter how many referendums it takes Scotland will eventually gain its freedom and decide its own future.”
AUOB marches have grown considerably in recent years in the aftermath of the 2016 UK-wide vote for Brexit, which has renewed calls for independence.
However, Singh warned that independence should remain its own distinct cause.
He said: “We should not tie the independence vote to the European Union. That will be decided at a later stage. The only thing we should be focusing on, and the Scottish Government should be concentrating on, is how to make Scotland an independent country.”
He added he worries about implications of the SNP’s strategy around the Brexit crisis for Scottish independence, including the party’s backing of a second vote on the Deal, with the option to remain in the EU. Pete Wishart MP has been one of a few SNP figures to disagree with this strategy because of the precedent it could set, and Singh agrees.
“I don’t agree with the People’s Vote. I think its very wrong to overturn a democratic vote in such a way. It’s setting a very dangerous precedent.
“When Scotland gains independence it will be the exact same scenario, with the British Government negotiating and Unionists trying to organise a second vote, and the precedent will have been set where a Scottish independence referendum could be overturned.”
The Scottish Government and independence movement should, he said, instead propose a 30 year plan on trade and sustainable economic development including a constitution for a new state.
The march will come days after a crunch vote at the SNP conference in Edinburgh, which will see a motion from SNP Depute leader Keith Brown and Scottish Finance Secretary Derek Mackay proposing Scotland continue to use the pound after independence, with the option of a Scottish currency should it meet six tests.
The motion will see amendments from several party branches demanding the tests be dropped, due to concerns that they will be difficult or impossible to meet.
Singh said he thought that an independent currency and central bank would be needed for independence.
He told CommonSpace: “You cannot be independent unless you have your own independent central bank. Independence without a central bank is not independence. We need to have control of our own currency and the printing of our own money.”