Police Scotland and Rangers Football Club (Engagement)

Part of the debate – in the Scottish Parliament on 18th May 2021.

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Photo of Humza Yousaf Humza Yousaf Scottish National Party

I welcome Kaukab Stewart to the chamber. I am delighted that she has been elected. I do not know whether this is her first question; I suspect that it might be. It is no surprise to me that she has hit the ground running and is asking questions on behalf of constituents in the first weeks of parliamentary business.

I will ensure that Police Scotland speaks to and debriefs Kaukab Stewart as the constituency MSP—I know that she has made that request. I support the actions that Police Scotland took over the weekend, but it is important that members can ask Police Scotland questions about operational matters on behalf of their constituents.

We will do our best to stop similar gatherings and disorder from taking place. Police Scotland will always do that in the best interests of public order and safety.

I go back to the point that I made to James Dornan at the beginning of this exchange: people must accept personal responsibility. No one needs the Government, the police or football clubs to tell them that assaulting police officers is wrong, that running amok, creating disorder and vandalising our city centres are wrong, that urinating in public is wrong, or that engaging in anti-Catholic bigotry is wrong. People should know that, yet grown men and women took part in the scenes that we saw over the weekend.

Kaukab Stewart has my absolute commitment that we will work closely with any stakeholder, club, city council and the police to ensure that we can prevent similar scenes. However, we must also be absolutely emphatic in saying that people hold personal responsibility for their actions. That is why Police Scotland will follow up the matter in the coming weeks.