Independence Referendum

Part of the debate – in the Scottish Parliament on 22nd March 2017.

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Photo of Bob Doris Bob Doris Scottish National Party

No, I am sorry.

I want to comment briefly on the re-emerging project fear alliance between the Conservatives and the Labour Party, with reference to my local area in particular. Let me tell members what that alliance meant in my Glasgow Maryhill and Springburn constituency—the Labour Party should really listen to this. It meant that three different, worried individuals who turned up at the yes hub in the Maryhill Road area of Glasgow in my constituency complained that the Labour Party was targeting the doors of pensioners in the area and telling them that their pensions would stop not after independence but the day after a yes vote. Such lies, fears and smears should have no place in any future Scottish referendum campaign. I was delighted that my constituency voted 57 per cent for Scottish independence and I place on record my thanks to the hundreds of volunteers who were such an inspiration and so positive for the Yes Scotland campaign.

I return to the theme of division and, in doing so, I will repeat some of what I said in a debate in the Scottish Parliament on 24 September 2014. Speaking about the Friday morning after the referendum result had become clear, I said:

“I received a text from my sister that I want to share.”

To provide some context, my niece Emily, who I will refer to, was nine then and my sister’s oldest daughter, Beth, was 14. I told members that my sister’s text said:

“‘Emily just woke up. Her first two words were, “mummy, Independence?” “No, darling.” “Is it not?” was her reply.’” [

Laughter

.]

I did not realise that that was a matter for laughter, but I think that the people of Scotland will judge members on that. The text continued:

“‘Just found out my oldest daughter joined the SNP. Paid £2 for the privilege. Well done Glasgow and West Dunbartonshire you all worked extremely hard. I have never seen the Vale like this before!’—

That is my home town—

‘Even when mum voted’— she is very frail—

‘in her slippers I was very proud of her Robert! Try and sleep both of you. We are all very proud in this household’.”

I was proud of what my mum, who has since passed away, did that day. I told members:

“It made me cry. It made me cry tears of pride ... not tears of despair.”—[

Official Report

, 24 September 2014; c 40.]

My nieces, my sister and my frail mum, who as I said has now sadly passed away, were not driven by conflict and division; they simply wanted a better future for their family, their community and their country, so how dare Iain Gray come to the chamber and talk about us sowing the seeds of division and how dare Maurice Golden talk about nasty nationalism!