Cabinet (Meetings)

Part of the debate – in the Scottish Parliament at on 13 June 2013.

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Photo of Alex Salmond Alex Salmond First Minister of Scotland, Leader, Scottish National Party

I am not hiding behind operational independence but, certainly, I have no knowledge of anyone in the Government suggesting any such thing to Vic Emery. Vic Emery says not, too. In his statement today, he said:

“changes in personnel are a feature of most mergers and reform programmes”.

The issue of operational independence is not something to hide behind; it is something of fundamental importance. The operational independence of the police service is of huge importance in a democratic society. By definition, it is even more important that the Scottish Police Authority should have operational independence.

In his statement today, Vic Emery said:

“By the end of this month I will have appeared before the Justice Committee on four occasions.”

There will be ample opportunity for Willie Rennie to raise in the Justice Committee any conspiracy theory that comes into his head, assuming he remembers to turn up this time.