Alister Jack clashes with Pete Wishart on SNP’s Holyrood result
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FOI data from the Scottish Government revealed SNP led-Government ministers spent £1,411.20 of Scottish taxpayers’ money on five new EU flags in the 2020/21 financial year. £1,138.20 was also allocated from the Scottish Government’s Constitution and External Affairs budget on seven brand new Saltire flags and £841.20 on four Union flags.
The new EU flags will be flown above all Scottish Government buildings at the request of the Scottish First Minister.
In the Scottish Government’s flag flying guidance 2021, approved by Ms Sturgeon, it was requested that the EU flag be flown on a daily basis.
The guidance said: “The First Minister has instructed that the European flag is flown from Scottish Government buildings on a daily basis except for specific flag flying dates.”
The new guidance also states the Union flag may only be flown once a year on Remembrance Sunday.
The EU flag, however, had only previously been flown from Government buildings on Europe Day, which is May 9.
Scottish Government buildings include the HQ at St Andrews House in Edinburgh and Victoria Quay in Leith.
The data also revealed SNP ministers owned 11 European flags in the 2020/21 financial year alongside 15 Saltire flags.
However, nationalist ministers possessed just seven Union flags.
The FOI data aligns with the SNP’s blueprint for a breakaway Scotland to join the EU in what the Scottish First Minister described as an “independent European country.”
Ms Sturgeon centered her 2021 Holyrood election campaign on holding another Scottish independence poll which would have to take place before Scotland can rejoin the EU.
But critics say the move could lead to a hard customs border with England with UK Government ministers claiming that Scotland’s trade with the rest of the UK is worth more than three times that with the EU and 565,000 Scottish jobs are directly linked to the UK’s internal market.
Dean Lockhart MSP, Scottish Conservative Constitution spokesman, said: “Even after leaving the European Union, it appears that the SNP Government were still refusing to accept another referendum result.
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“They were all too happy to spend taxpayers’ money purchasing EU flags to be flown from their buildings.
“Despite the obvious priority of tackling the pandemic over the last year, it appears that there was still time for the SNP Government to obsess on constitutional matters as is all too typical of their behaviour.”
The Scottish Government were approached for comment but did not respond.
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