At the outset, I pay tribute to my colleague, Andrew Welsh, who is standing down from the SPCB. Since the re-establishment of our Parliament, he has served as a member of the SPCB, which was an unglamorous position in difficult times. We owe a debt of gratitude to him and to all those who serve or have served on that body.
Such service has always been viewed as non-party political. As a creature of statute, the SPCB is a vital part of the functioning and administration of this institution. Like others, Andrew Welsh forsook party loyalty and divisions when acting in that role; I will do likewise. The SPCB's purpose is to serve not party or sectional interests but those of the Scottish Parliament and the people that it serves. Members have my assurance that, if elected, I will act without fear of or favour for individuals or party.
I do not know what particular skills I bring, but I offer commitment, diligence, approachability and integrity. I have always considered it an honour and privilege to serve in this Parliament. Whatever views I may hold about Scotland's future constitutional arrangements, I view it as essential to uphold the integrity of this institution and to seek to nurture and cherish it.
The role is about serving not just members but those who work here and those whom we are here to serve. In asking for members' support, I reaffirm my commitment to be diligent, accountable and approachable. I will serve the institution and all its members irrespective of any party affiliations and I will do so without fear or favour.