Prime Minister Boris Johnson visited Scotland today, amid calls from a Renfrewshire politician to “pick up his P45” and make the trip his last.
The UK Premier, still under fire over a string of lockdown-flouting Downing Street party allegations, made a whistle-stop visit by private jet as part of a ‘Levelling Up’ tour.
He took time out from attempting to iron out escalating tensions between Russia and the Ukraine, to visit Rosyth dockyard to promote his government’s mission to ‘Level Up’ – correct social and economic imbalances between regions of the UK.
But tensions between Downing Street and the Scottish Government are nearly as icy as those between the west and Russia, after Scots politicians, including Renfrewshire MP Gavin Newlands, called on him to resign over the partygate scandal.
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SNP man Mr Newlands said: “I hope this trip to Scotland will be his last as Prime Minister, his farewell tour after a period in office that has been a disaster for our country.
“If he had a shred of decency left he would be apologizing for the misconduct and misery his time at Number 10 has been a byword for, then picking up his P45.”
And the politician, who represents Paisley and Renfrewshire North at Westminster, added: “As always with his day-trips north of Watford, he was hidden away from the public after traveling to Scotland by private jet, and given strictly rationed media appearances.
“The only time he designs to visit is to use Scotland as a backdrop for his latest photo ops, despite his party being rejected by the people of Scotland at every election since 1955.
“The reality is that his taxpayer-funded private jet junket was far removed from the reality facing millions of Scots – soaring energy prices, rocketing food costs and a cost of living crisis that the UK Government seems unwilling or unable to even try and tackle. ”
The fuming nationalist politician continued: “His kamikaze Brexit has cost our country billions of pounds and left businesses the length and breadth of Scotland struggling to survive, strangled by red tape and trade barriers, yet he carries on lying about the consequences for us all.
“That power is wasted in the hands of Downing Street and Westminster – it’s time Scotland’s future was in Scotland’s hands.”
Mr Johnson’s last trip to Scotland was during lockdown conditions last January.
He also came under fire for failing to meet the Scottish Tory leader Douglas Ross, during the latest visit – seen as a snub after the Moray Mp called for his resignation over his role in the party scandal.
It led to a clash between Downing Street Tories and those north of the border after controversial senior Tory cabinet figure Jacob Rees-Mogg branded the Scottish leader a “lightweight figure” in retaliation.
Speaking at Rosyth, Mr Johnson said he is “working very hard” with his Scottish colleagues on a “joint agenda of uniting and leveling up and delivering for the people of the whole UK.”
He was in Scotland to announce a collaboration with the Scottish Government over two new green ‘freeports’. set to offer tax breaks and lower business tariffs from 2023.
The PM then headed to the north west of England to speak on coronavirus backlogs in the health service.
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