Moray MP to be confirmed as leader of UK’s ‘third force’

Triumphant return to Westminster for SNP MPs
Triumphant return to Westminster for SNP MPs

THE SNP ASSAULT on the UK Parliament will be led by Angus Robertson despite the return of former party leader Alex Salmond to the parliamentary fold.

Speculation had been growing over who would lead the 56-strong SNP team at Westminster following the re-election of Mr Salmond, who last year quit his role as Scotland’s First Minister after the independence referendum.

However, with the full backing of Nicola Sturgeon and Mr Salmond it has emerged that Moray’s MP will play an even greater role in the new parliament – a reward for his leadership of the SNP campaign that stunned the UK political establishment.

Joining his 55 colleagues at Westminster on Monday, Mr Robertson said: “It has been an honour to lead the Westminster SNP group for the last eight years and it would be an honour to continue as group leader.

“I am grateful to have the support of deputy SNP leader Stewart Hosie MP and former First Minister Alex Salmond MP – and the encouragement from colleagues across the newly elected SNP group.

“The SNP is now the third party at Westminster and we have a huge responsibility to stand up for Scotland.”

Surveying the scenes as the 56-strong SNP group gathered, Alex Salmond said: “I loved being first minister but everything has its time and I think things are turning out not too badly.”