Scottish First Minister Nicola Sturgeon has been very determined throughout all her political career to help Scotland have more control over its politics and economy. Since the last Scottish parliamentary elections, and after making a deal with another nationalist political party, she has been even more determined and able to lead Scotland as an independent country.
Former Scottish National Party (SNP) leader, Alex Salmond, resigned as Scotland’s first minister in 2014, after the first Scottish referendum was unsuccessful. He was replaced by his deputy, Nicola Sturgeon. When Sturgeon was a teenager, she wanted to become a politician, because she witnessed an inappropriate economic situation across the country during Margaret Thatcher’s tenure in office. Sturgeon has been an SNP member since the age of 16. She was elected to Holyrood for the first time in 1999; by 2007, she was the deputy leader of the SNP.
Nicola Sturgeon has always been a complex politician who is a calculating and serious person; she is also compassionate and sensible. As the SNP’s deputy minister, Sturgeon managed Scotland’s “Yes” campaign and has always been highly determined to pursue independence. After the first independence referendum in 2014, which was disappointing in her opinion, Sturgeon made efforts to hold another referendum. The outcome of the Brexit vote has made her more tenacious to make this possible.
SNP Leader Accused PM of His Power Grab Bill
On 6 May 2021, the SNP won 64 seats out of 129, which was one seat short of a majority. Among the leaders of the Scottish Conservatives, Labour, Liberal Democrats and Greens, the SNP leader was voted by the Scottish Parliament as the country’s first minister. This is her third government and, by 2022, she will become Scotland’s longest-serving first minister. As soon as she became the first minister in 2021, Sturgeon reiterated that she intended to hold a second independence referendum sometime over the next five years.
Westminster has always expressed its opposition to another Scottish independence referendum and stated that the 2014 vote was once in a generation opportunity. But ever since the new Scottish government was established, Nicola Sturgeon has used stronger words to address independence. The first minister says the people of Scotland should have the right to decide for their future and Scotland should be in the hands of the Scottish people. She bluntly accused Prime Minister Boris Johnson of his power grab – the Internal Market Bill – after Brexit and stated that such proposals place the combined authority on a collision course.
Second Scottish Referendum Is an Unarguable Mandate
During her first phone talk with Boris Johnson after SNP’s victory in May 2021, Sturgeon emphasised that a second independence referendum was not a matter of if but a matter of when. In a recent speech at the SNP conference, she openly stated that democracy will prevail, so the Scottish people should be allowed another referendum to decide for their future. She called for another vote by the end of 2023 and asked the UK government to agree to a second independence referendum since the pandemic is hoped to be under control by then.
Sturgeon dubbed a second referendum an unarguable mandate, and added that the Scottish people are the ones who should decide for their destiny. In straightforward words, the Scottish first minister added that “Frankly, it is not up to the Westminster government” to decide for the future of the Scottish people. She reminded that the UK is a voluntary union of nations who will continue cooperation and friendship across the isles.
Sturgeon Criticised Tory Management
Sturgeon also gave a speech criticising the damaging impact of Brexit, which went viral. She called Brexit a direct Conservative hit on Scotland’s key strengths. She added that leaving the EU damaged Scotland and its food and drinks sector and universities, and mentioned that people feel the damage in their everyday life. After this speech, people have been asking why politicians ignore the points raised. She pointed to shortages in all sectors following Brexit and warned that worse may be on the way.
Sturgeon directly attacked the Conservative government and said it is the management of the Tory government which will make one of the richest countries in the world poorer year after year. Her courageous speech highlighting the harmful impacts of Brexit is shameful for UK officials. In another attack on the UK Conservatives, Sturgeon said Westminster damaged the whole nation with Brexit, but uses the harms done as arguments for more control across the country.
Deal with Greens Gave More Courage to SNP Leader
A few months after the May elections, Nicola Sturgeon announced SNP’s cooperation agreement with the Scottish Greens. This agreement created a majority of pro-independent politicians in the Scottish Parliament. It was the first power-sharing agreement with a green party in the whole of UK which achieved to further push for her goal of holding an independence referendum. This agreement was a measure of power back to the SNP, giving more strength and courage to Sturgeon to pursue another referendum vote. Nicola Sturgeon insisted that she has an undeniable mandate for a second Scottish independence referendum with the deal. She bluntly said that the decision to form their own society and economy should not be imposed by the government at Westminster against the Scottish people’s will. She stressed that the SNP and the Greens hold 71 of the 129 seats in Holyrood and all the members were committed to holding an independence referendum.
SNP Members Speak Out at the House of Commons
Sturgeon’s courageous criticisms against Westminster has encouraged other SNP members to speak out. Stephen Flynn, an SNP member and a member of the UK parliament, has criticised the UK government for a “great renewable robbery” on the Scottish renewable industry. The SNP’s spokesperson for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy referred to the UK government’s unfairness in the charging system, and bluntly criticised the high rate charge for Scottish renewable companies connect to the national grid.
Ian Blackford, another SNP member who has been at the UK Parliament since 2015, is a courageous Scottish politician who is usually critical of the UK government and speaks out at the weekly Prime Minister’s Questions. He is also a Scottish politician who openly defends Nicola Sturgeon’s policies and leadership. Recently, Blackford supported Sturgeon after she was accused of giving information to the public of a COBRA meeting about Covid. Blackford defended the way the Scottish government handled the pandemic situation and said it did way better than the UK government.
The Scottish National Party (SNP) was established with nationalistic tendencies. It had grown to be an important political party and grabbed a lot of attention across the nation. SNP Members acted better than the other political parties in Scotland and were able to gain more seats in the parliamentary elections. In 2014, the party campaigned for holding an independence referendum, but the result was not in favour of the nationalists. Following the referendum, SNP Leader Alex Salmond stepped down and was immediately replaced by his deputy, Nicola Sturgeon, the determined nationalist politician.
Nicola Sturgeon is an outspoken leader who firmly followed the will of nationalists. Recently, following Britain’s withdrawal from the EU, she emphasised the need for another independence referendum. Sturgeon pursued her political purposes and made a deal with another nationalistic party at Holyrood, giving more power to the SNP. Throughout her political career, she has grown to be more courageous and outspoken against Westminster, which helps her be a popular national leader.