Thorn in side of first min­is­ter

The Press and Journal (Aberdeen and Aberdeenshire) - - AGENDA -

Af­ter an em­bar­rass­ing pub­lic maul­ing in Holy­rood over the Alex Sal­mond probe, Ni­cola Stur­geon bowed to what had be­come in­evitable and placed her own role in the mat­ter un­der in­de­pen­dent re­view. It was bad enough be­ing blamed over the “sham­bles” of the Scot­tish Gov­ern­ment mis­han­dling of sex­ual con­duct claims against Mr Sal­mond. The cri­sis wors­ened when Ms Stur­geon was por­trayed as in­dulging in im­proper clan­des­tine meet­ings and phone calls with Mr Sal­mond – in al­leged con­tra­ven­tion of con­duct rules cov­er­ing such gov­ern­ment in­ves­ti­ga­tions. We must not for­get that an of­fi­cial po­lice in­ves­ti­ga­tion is still un­der way into the spe­cific al­le­ga­tions against Mr Sal­mond, but this pro­ce­dural row will dom­i­nate for the time be­ing. It will be an un­pleas­ant thorn in her side as she goes for­ward into a po­ten­tial IndyRef2 bat­tle de­pend­ing on the Brexit out­come. But she might be lead­ing a di­vided party af­ter a spec­tac­u­lar fall­ing out be­tween for­mer men­tor and pro­tege.

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