Scotland politics

Sturgeon accused of 'twiddling thumbs' over legislation

Nicola Sturgeon in Scottish Parliament Image copyright PA
Image caption The Scottish Conservatives claimed Nicola Sturgeon was focusing all her attention on a possible second independence vote

The Scottish Conservatives have accused the first minister of "twiddling her thumbs" over Scottish legislation.

The claim came after analysis they conducted showed her government had not introduced any legislation to Holyrood since the Scottish election in May.

The party claimed Nicola Sturgeon was focusing all her attention on a possible second independence vote.

The SNP said it was doing all it could to protect Scotland from a "damaging" Brexit.

Tory research found the SNP has not introduced a single bill for scrutiny by MSPs since the country went to the polls in May, saying it was in "marked contrast" to the SNP's first two spells in office.

In the 2007-11 parliament, the SNP government had introduced three bills by now, the Conservatives said.

Similarly, in the 2011-16 parliament they had introduced four bills, it was claimed.

According to the Conservatives, the last time the administration introduced a new bill to parliament was over a year ago.

'Woeful start'

Scottish Conservatives deputy chief whip Maurice Golden said: "Even by the SNP's own standards, it is a woeful start to a new administration.

"It is a clear hallmark of a government that has run out of ideas.

"The first minister is twiddling her thumbs and focusing all her attention on a referendum on independence that the majority don't want.

"The SNP desperately need to start getting on with the day job of governing Scotland rather than continuing to campaign for an unpopular and divisive second referendum."

Earlier this month, Ms Sturgeon launched a consultation on proposed legislation which could bring about a second independence vote after the majority of Scots voted to remain in the EU.

In September's programme for government, the first minister set out 14 bills for introduction until the end of June 2017.

'Standing up for Scotland'

Scotland's Finance Secretary Derek MacKay said: "The SNP is doing everything we can to protect Scotland from the right-wing hard Tory Brexit which will cost 80,000 Scottish jobs.

"The Tories' day job is to ignore Scotland's democratic wishes and impose a disastrous Brexit against the wishes of the people of Scotland.

"The SNP is getting on with the job of standing up for Scotland.

"We've begun to implement over 60 of our manifesto commitments while the Tories obsess about a damaging Brexit the people of Scotland did not vote for."

More on this story