24 Jan 2018
Nicola Sturgeon has been accused of desperation after claiming she didn’t want to remove the Union Flag from Scottish Government buildings – weeks after issuing instructions demanding exactly that.
It was reported this morning that the number of days the Union Flag will fly from government buildings across Scotland will be reduced from 15 to just one for 2018.
But in a “Donald Trump-style denial”, the First Minister took to Twitter late last night to claim the story was wrong, even though her own government’s guidance says otherwise.
In total, she’s tweeted 17 times on the issue in the last 12 hours.
Released on January 10, the instructions state the Union Flag should only be flown on Remembrance Day.
The previous year, the same guidance said it should be flown on a range of other occasions from a variety of official buildings, including on the Queen’s Birthday.
And it goes on to state: “The Saltire should be flown every day from Scottish Government buildings, except where indicated otherwise in the schedule.”
The Scottish Conservatives have told the SNP, if it is so concerned about the reports, to change the guidance back to the 2017 version, rescinding the alterations made for this year.
And the party said the row suggested the nationalists were more interested in lowering Union Flags than raising standards in schools and hospitals.
Scottish Conservative MSP Murdo Fraser said:
“This is a desperate attempt by Nicola Sturgeon to spin her way out of trouble.
“The SNP is more interested in lowering Union Flags than raising standards in schools and hospitals.
“The First Minister’s Trump-style Twitter denial by candlelight last night does nothing to change the facts.
“The SNP issued a dictat on January 10 ordering Union Flags to be flown on one day and one day only.
“If Nicola Sturgeon is so insistent nothing will change then it’s quite straightforward – change the guidance back to what it was.
“This is classic nationalist behaviour, and nothing Nicola Sturgeon says can alter that.
“She always stresses her civic nationalism is nothing to do with flags and banners.
“The events of the last 24 hours prove otherwise.”