20 Years of Devolution

Part of the debate – in the House of Commons at 1:20 pm on 11th July 2019.

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Photo of David Duguid David Duguid Conservative, Banff and Buchan 1:20 pm, 11th July 2019

I thank the hon. Gentleman for his point. I am going to raise a similar one about the north-east of Scotland, where I come from—that will come as no surprise.

The work involved in this review is vital if the Scottish people are to enjoy the good governance they deserve, from both the Westminster and Holyrood Governments. I was pleased, therefore, with the UK Government’s response to the Committee’s report on intergovernmental affairs, which showed their commitment to such a review. It remains to be seen whether the Scottish Government will put the interests of the Scottish people first and work constructively with the UK Government. We may see more of the same from the SNP: this is the party that is delaying the implementation of the Scotland Act 2016—particularly on welfare, as I have mentioned—and is desperately trying to keep agricultural and fisheries policy under Brussels’ control. This is the party whose own Brexit Minister has said he does not like the devolved settlement. This is the party that ran roughshod over the procedures of the Scottish Parliament and the advice of its Presiding Officer to ram through its continuity Bill, only for swathes of it to be struck down by the Supreme Court.

The choice is the SNP’s, and I hope for the sake of the Scottish people that the SNP chooses a more constructive path. If it fails to do so, I suspect that come 2021, when we have the next Holyrood elections, the Scottish people will bring that nationalist era to an end and elect a new Government who will take that constructive approach—