RACISM: Rennie denounces anti-English rhetoric

Willie Rennie, the LibDem leader in Scotland denounces FM’s ‘racist’ remarks.

By Bill Heaney

Responding to the First Minister Nicola Sturgeon’s comments at a briefing claiming that Scotland had almost reached elimination before the virus was ‘seeded’ by travellers from elsewhere, Scottish Liberal Democrat Leader Willie Rennie said:  “Anti-English rhetoric has reared its ugly head at different points throughout this crisis and there is no place for it.

“Parts of Scotland have some of the worst rates of coronavirus across the UK. To claim any kind of exceptionalism is misjudged. People will not look kindly on ministers wildly searching around to apportion blame.

“Blaming England without evidence is a desperate attempt to deflect from the responsibility the Scottish Government bears for not preparing well for the second wave. Blaming others for our own weakness is not something we should be hearing during a global pandemic.

“This government has squandered valuable time over the summer months when the virus had abated.

“It needs to make a step change to Scotland’s test and trace capacity and the efficiency of contact tracing interviews. This is all within the First Minister’s control.”

Dumbarton’s MSP Jackie Baillie has said the test and trace system introduced by the government here in Scotland has been an abject failure.

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