Tuesday, August 8, 2017

‘Operation Gag’, Nicola Sturgeon’s failed SNP Government held to account for poor performance on freedom of information, the press and elected opposition members see unacceptable delays, the SNP don’t believe in the people’s right to know because deep down they don’t believe in democracy





















Dear All

Politicians like to say if you have nothing to hide, then you have nothing to fear, they themselves however don’t think the same rhetoric applies to them. The SNP like to spout nonsense about freedom, but the reality is they don’t like most despots and cults believe in it.

The SNP spent years bragging about how they were going to bring a new style of politics of openness and transparency; they spent years raging at the culture of secrecy as an affront to democracy. Scottish people, including me bought into this lie, it was a lie, a lie in a ‘sea of lies’ that these people told to hoodwink the public.

We have had 10 solid years of SNP Government; that has been 10 years of failure, 10 years that failed to make Scotland a better place for the ordinary people. The SNP lined their pockets with taxpayers’ money and rejoiced in the demise of Scottish Labour. They thought that they had ‘cracked’ it after 2015 when 56 SNP MPs were elected, now the 2017, the backlash of angry public has kicked in, it is Nicola Sturgeon and the SNP that are the hunted animals.     

Under FOI legislation any individual has a right to recorded information held by hundreds of devolved public bodies. You would think that this bill and the SNP would be compatible but you would be wrong, the SNP don’t believe in the people’s right to know, because deep down, they aren’t a party of government.

The SNP is the cuckoo in the nest.

The denial of freedom of information by the SNP Government isn’t new, this has been going on for some considerable time; the Nationalists know that they are freedom of information legislation. The SNP have setup a culture of fear, in this case, fear of losing their jobs; that is what civil servants face if they cross the SNP. So, we have a situation where civil servants keep their heads down and do their ‘masters’ bidding, some people have mortgages to pay, and unemployment is very unattractive these days.

A particular situation has developed that the SNP Government has been involved in a higher refusal rates for journalists than other applicants. You don’t have to be a rocket scientist to understand why, 10 years of failed government means 10 years of dirt which is hidden in filing cabinets, ammunition to shred the SNP politicians particularly those in the high profile portfolios such as health and education.

The slogan that the SNP are ‘Stronger for Scotland’ is a lie, as Neil Findlay, a Labour MSP, said:

“This system is being abused and it is destroying trust in government."

You also could add in at this point the practice by civil servants to respond later to requests from MSPs than to the population at large as a way of trying to systematically delay and protect Nicola Sturgeon from awkward questions at FMQs where she regularly has to resort to her angry wee Nat routine.

The truth in her case doesn’t set her free, it is an anvil round her neck pulling her down, 2017’s election result was a disaster for the SNP, as I said these people aren’t talented individuals, they treat government departments as a their playthings, a part time gig with a hefty pay packet and perks, their turn on the ‘merry go round’.

Under FOI legislation, authorities have 20 days to respond but it seems that Nicola Sturgeon’s political commissars who work under the title of special advisers are screen responses especially from journalists. The SNP as I mentioned shouted about transparency but they are a Government failing to keep records of important meetings, this flies in the face of good governance.

The SNP Government have failed to meet the 20-day deadline for between 20 per cent and 32 per cent of all requests tabled in a seven year period according to Scottish Labour. Instead of improving the system, the SNP with their ‘blockers’ in the shape of their political commissars have been lording it over a system which has seen information requests submitted by elected members, the percentage of questions not answered on time getting higher in every single year.

SNP, ‘Stronger for Scotland’, the facts don’t lie!

This figure may open your eyes to what people did wrong by voting SNP, in 2015/16, the total failure rate was 21 per cent, but for elected members it was 43 per cent. Government, no matter who runs it must be held to account, if it cannot, we just have a dictatorship running under the guise of democracy.

Labour MSP Neil Findlay said:

"These laws are supposed to increase transparency and accountability of government, but the handling of freedom of information requests in recent times has all the hallmarks of a secretive government desperate to dodge scrutiny."

If you aren’t in the fight against Nicola Sturgeon and the SNP, you are doing your fellow Scots a huge disservice, there are many ways to join in, you can do what I do here, publish a blog, you can use your vote wisely, you can get politically active, you can write to the papers, you can stand for election yourself and oppose these people.

In 2017, I supported three people getting into public office, two Conservatives and one Scottish Labour, it was the right thing to do, in politics, you have to remind politicians that they are here to serve the people, they aren’t our masters, and we aren’t slaves.

Finally, will the SNP change their ways, will they removed their special advisors from the process, I personally doubt it, I see Nicola Sturgeon as a particularly small minded individual who lives in constant fear, she is right to be scared, she had led the SNP to destruction, we are seeing the small explosions such as 2017 take place, the big bang is yet to come at the ballot box.

Yours sincerely

George Laird
The Campaign for Human Rights at Glasgow University

4 comments:

Al C said...

Bullying scum, that's what they are. Bullying English people in Scotland - to the extent that they have to stringently deny it, bullying unionists, bullying anyone whom they dislike. Good thing that they're not very bright.

Sherbie. said...

The witch Sturgeon wont even tell us, the taxpayer, how much she uses in expenses. SHOCKING!!!

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