Boris Johnson slams ‘deranged’ SNP in independence row

Scotland’s first cross Citizens’ Assembly has published its vision for the country’s future with Scots claiming further powers to the Scottish Parliament as a preferred option. The report contains 60 recommendations which include the Scottish Parliament receiving further powers from Westminster and cooperating with the UK Government.

The independent Assembly, commissioned by Nicola Sturgeon in 2019, is made up of a group of 100 Scottish citizens which broadly represent the people of Scotland in terms of demography, geography and political views and is independent of government.

Citing an example, the report suggested further tax powers was the main priority along with renewable energy.

The report added: “The Scottish Government and Parliament should have more devolved powers over how the tax system can be made fairer for all citizens and how tax revenue can be used.”

One Scot, who was part of the panel in the report, said: “I want to see Scotland get more devolution powers without losing our part of the UK status.”

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The report said the majority of Scots wanted a Scotland with “more powers to make its own decisions and manage its own affairs.”

But they made clear the country “engages cooperatively with the other regions of the UK and internationally, and that works honestly and transparently for the benefit of Scotland and all its people.”

The report will be laid in Parliament for debate with an action plan to follow.

A senior SNP member admitted the party’s goal was to undertake a new referendum within the next term of the Scottish Parliament after May’s election.

Former SNP Westminster leader Angus Roberton warned Boris Johnson to not prevent a second vote.

Speaking today, he claimed Mr Johnson and the attitude of the UK Government was “anti-democratic.”

He said: “This does not correspond to the ideas of the 21st century, it rather reflects the 18th or 19th century.”

Reaffirming the SNP idea to be part of the EU, Mr Robertson, who is standing to be an MSP, said: “This is the largest single market in the world, and we want to be part of it.”

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However, constitutional lawyer Robert Hazell from University College London said Scottish independence would “have serious consequences” and could threaten to rip up the rest of the UK.

He said: “The United Kingdom will break up.

“There are already strong signals of increasing support for a referendum in Northern Ireland on reunification with Ireland.”

“And in Wales, too, calls for independence gained popularity. “

“Johnson’s promise of a Global Britain, strong and free because of Brexit, would prove wrong.”

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