Coun­cil­lors in spat as Tory accuses SNP mem­bers of not singing national an­them

Evening Express (City Final) - - News - By Adele Mer­son

AN ABERDEEN coun­cil­lor has been ac­cused of try­ing to “make a po­lit­i­cal point” out of Re­mem­brance Sun­day.

A spat broke out on Twit­ter af­ter a tweet posted by Con­ser­va­tive coun­cil­lor Fred­die John fol­low­ing the Aberdeen re­mem­brance ser­vice at the war me­mo­rial on School­hill.

He tweeted: “I was quite up­set that as far as I could see none of the SNP sang the national an­them at the Aberdeen re­mem­brance ser­vice to­day. Showed a dis­tinct lack of class.”

Cllr John de­nied mak­ing a po­lit­i­cal state­ment and in­stead said he was just re­ply­ing to an­other in­di­vid­ual’s tweet rather than post­ing his own Tweet for pub­lic­ity.

He added: “I didn’t want to cre­ate it into a po­lit­i­cal is­sue, that isn’t what I wanted to do.

“In my per­sonal opin­ion if you’re at a re­mem­brance ser­vice and it is part of the or­der of ser­vice, you would ex­pect all coun­cil­lors to take part, but I can un­der­stand not all coun­cil­lors may share that opin­ion.”

SNP group leader Stephen Flynn said ev­ery SNP coun­cil­lor at­tended the ser­vice, in­clud­ing three who have served in the armed forces.

He added: “I think it is ex­cep­tion­ally poor eti­quette to try and politi­cise re­mem­brance ser­vices.

“These com­ments are un­be­com­ing of some­one in pub­lic of­fice and he may wish to re­flect upon that.”

Fel­low SNP coun­cil­lor Chris­tian Al­lard said a lot of peo­ple choose not to sing the national an­them, in­clud­ing some ser­vice­men and also some in­di­vid­u­als not from the UK.

He added: “The most im­por­tant thing in all this is Cllr John is try­ing to make a po­lit­i­cal point out of Re­mem­brance Sun­day.

“It’s about all of us at­tend­ing and pay­ing our re­spects for all the peo­ple that died dur­ing the wars.

“Pol­i­tics doesn’t take place on Re­mem­brance Sun­day and I think it’s very cheap.”

Coun­cil­lor Dou­glas Lums­den, Con­ser­va­tive group leader and co-leader of Aberdeen City Coun­cil, said: “Re­mem­brance Day is a day for us all to come to­gether and show our re­spect for those who have made the ul­ti­mate sac­ri­fice. I think it is the wrong de­ci­sion for most of the SNP to refuse to sing the national an­them but it is for them to re­flect on.

“I find it dis­ap­point­ing that some would use this as an op­por­tu­nity to make a po­lit­i­cal point when this should be the last thing on peo­ple’s mind on such a poignant day.”

Pol­i­tics doesn’t take place on Re­mem­brance Sun­day

me­mo­rial: The Re­mem­brance Sun­day ser­vice and in­set, the tweets sent by Fred­die John and Stephen Flynn.

Com­ments: Coun­cil­lor Fred­die John tweeted about the ser­vice.

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