Science

Alex Salmond launches new pro-independence Alba Party

Alex Salmond launches new pro-independence Alba Party”

Former SNP leader Alex Salmond has announced the creation of a new pro-independence party which will stand in the Scottish Parliament election.

Their hopes is an overwhelming result will pile pressure on Boris Johnson to call a second referendum.

Mr Salmond said: "Over the next six weeks we will promote new ideas about taking Scotland forward, giving primacy to economic recovery from the pandemic and the achievement of independence for our country".

Mr Salmond stood down from Holyrood the following year and lost his Westminster seat in 2017 as Ruth Davidson's Scottish Conservatives enjoyed a number of big wins in the snap general election.

"Boris Johnson has already said no to the SNP proposals, he will find it much more hard to say no to a parliament, and a country", he said.

Mr Salmond said the aim of the party was to work towards a "successful, socially just, environmentally responsible, independent country".

Most pre-election polling indicates the SNP are set to dominate the constituency system, which Salmond's party will not be standing in.

He remained on the Holyrood backbenches and returned to Westminster in the 2015 general election, winning the Gordon constituency as the party - now led by Ms Sturgeon - won 56 of the 59 seats up for grabs in Scotland.

The first elects 73 constituency MSPs, including Sturgeon, by the "first past the post" system.

The SNP has already said it will ask the United Kingdom government to allow another referendum, as Scots voted overwhelmingly against Brexit in 2016.

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Salmond said having "supermajority" support among MSPs for independence would change "the balance fundamentally into Scotland's favour".

Former Scottish first minister Alex Salmond speaks to the media outside the Court Of Session, in Edinburgh, on January 8, 2019.

Salmond's electoral bid comes after weeks of intense political tumult over his incendiary attacks on his former friend and protegee Sturgeon, as a bitter row between the independence movement's most dominant figures has played out in public.

"Our campaign that we have launched is going to be entirely positive", Salmond said.

Earlier this week, a Scottish parliamentary investigation concluded in a split decision that Sturgeon misled lawmakers about the allegations against her predecessor.

He also defended his past behaviour.

Commenting on the legal action he has been involved in, Alex Salmond said: "Everything I've said on the record stands but after the court cases, after the judges, after the jury, after the inquiries my view is that we should accept the results of everything, the ones we like, the ones we don't like, and then we move on".

"So it is time to move on".

Opinion polls in the last 12 months have shown historically high support for independence.

While 58 percent of people saw Sturgeon favourably, only 14 percent felt the same towards Salmond, with almost three-quarters registering unfavourable opinion of him, according to polling by Opinium Research and Sky News.



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