World News

Michael Gove says Scotland will not be granted referendum before 2024 general election

The Senior Cabinet minister – who is responsible for countering the push for independence – is likely to infuriate the SNP with his comments, which appear to go further than other ministers who have said that this is the wrong time for another referendum.

Under the Fixed Term Parliaments Act, the next general election is not due until May 2024 – although Mr Johnson is committed to repealing the act which could allow him to go to the country before then.

Sign up to our daily newsletter

The i newsletter cut through the noise

Asked in an interview with The Daily Telegraph whether there was “any circumstance” in which Mr Johnson would approve a referendum before a May 2024 election, Mr Gove said: “I don’t think so.”

Asked whether his position was that “there will be no referendum before the 2024 election”, he replied: “I can’t see it.”

Read More

Read More

Brian Monteith: Will Nicola Sturgeon’s power-grab come back to bite her?

After pro-independence parties won a majority in the elections to the Scottish Parliament in May, First Minister Nicola Sturgeon said it was “a matter of when, not if” there would be a second referendum.

Mr Gove’s intervention may heighten the chances that the SNP could try to hold a unilateral referendum without the approval of Westminster, which would almost certainly result in a legal battle through the courts.

Michael Gove has said he “can’t see” Boris Johnson granting a new referendum on Scottish independence before the next general election.

Mr Gove however insisted that it was “foolish” to talk about a referendum at a time when the country was still recovering from the coronavirus pandemic.

“The Prime Minister is completely focused on making sure that, for the lifetime of this parliament, we increase economic opportunity, we provide people with the chance to make more of their lives, take control of their futures. And that’s quite rightly what the Prime Minister of the United Kingdom’s focus should be,” he said.

“It seems to me to be at best reckless, at worst folly, to try to move the conversation on to constitutional division when people expect us to be working together in order to deal with these challenges.”

A message from the Editor:

Thank you for reading this article. We’re more reliant on your support than ever as the shift in consumer habits brought about by coronavirus impacts our advertisers.

If you haven’t already, please consider supporting our trusted, fact-checked journalism by taking out a digital subscription.

www.scotsman.com

The Scotsman

The Scotsman is a Scottish compact newspaper and daily news website headquartered in Edinburgh. First established as a radical political paper in 1817, it began daily publication in 1855 and remained a broadsheet until August 2004. Its parent company, JPIMedia, also publishes the Edinburgh Evening News.

Related Articles

Back to top button