Leftwing electoral alliance launches petition to add weight to demand
THE SOCIALIST electoral alliance Rise has published its strategy to give the Scottish Parliament the right to decide when it holds a second independence referendum.
Under schedule five of the 1998 Scotland Act, the Westminster Parliament retains legal authority over whether Scotland can hold a referendum on national independence. Rise claim the resolution would give the Scottish Parliament the “political force” to pursue a second referendum without Westminster consent should that prove necessary.
Rise candidate for the Glasgow region, Cat Boyd, said: “The independence referendum changed politics in Scotland for a generation because of the people’s movement that drove the Yes vote from 30 per cent up to 45 per cent.
“Now we are bearing the brunt of Tory austerity as a result of the No vote in 2014. But the national question remains at the top of the agenda in Scottish politics.
“That is why Scotland needs a mandate, in this election, to have a referendum in the next parliament if and when the time is right. We need to keep the pressure on Westminster and re-assert the radical demands of the independence movement to ensure Cameron and Osborne know that austerity will see a defiant challenge from citizens in Scotland where the majority are opposed to the UK government.”
“We are bearing the brunt of Tory austerity as a result of the No vote in 2014. But the national question remains at the top of the agenda in Scottish politics.” Cat Boyd
The announcement comes after SSP co-spokesperson and Rise candidate for Lothian Colin Fox told the Radical Independence Conference 2016 that Westminster had been sufficiently shocked by the advance of Yes support in 2014 that a UK Government may choose to not grant permission for a referendum in the future.
Ex-Tory minister Liam Fox recently claimed that “the courts would step in” to prevent a second, legally binding referendum.
Speaking in a promotional video for the policy, former SNP deputy leader Jim Sillars called on people to support the proposal for the resolution in parliament by signing a petition.
He said: “I’m voting Rise on the List in the Holyrood elections. They are going to table a resolution asserting the right of the parliament to have a mandate to hold an independence referendum when that parliament decides the time is Right.
Rise are asking people to sign a nationwide petition, in order to give their resolution even greater force.”
Since the referendum, alternatives to a Westminster mandated referendum have been floated by figures including former First Minister Alex Salmond, who argued that a majority of pro-independence MSPs in the Scottish Parliament might constitute an acceptable basis for independence.
First Minister Nicola Sturgeon has insisted that the precedent set by the independence referendum of 2014, which was arrived at with the Edinburgh Agreement between the Scottish and UK Governments, must be followed for any future independence referendums.
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