Galloway tells Sturgeon independence referendum date SHOULD be set…but not until 2044

Scotland voted by a margin of 55 percent to 45 percent during the historic referendum of 2014 to remain part of the UK in a move that at the time was thought to have put an end to the SNP’s hopes of Scottish independence. But Ms Sturgeon has continued to ramp up her campaign for a second referendum on Scottish independence and had suggested the SNP would press ahead with that should they achieve a majority in the crunch Scottish election on May 6.

Boris Johnson has so far refused to bow to demands from the SNP to transfer the relevant powers to Holyrood for another vote to take place, insisting the referendum result from 2014 was a “once in a generation” event.

Now All For Unity leader George Galloway, a consistently vocal critic of Ms Sturgeon’s demands for a second Scottish independence referendum, has said another historic vote should take place – but not until 50 years after the first one.

The former Labour MP tweeted: “The next referendum on Scottish Separatism should take place in 2044.

“After a Clarity Act has established the severe restrictions which are inevitable when any country – like Canada – faces the danger of secession.

“I don’t mind setting a date in 2044 if it’s thought useful.”

The latest comment from Mr Galloway comes with Ms Sturgeon being accused by her political rivals of prioritising her campaign for Scottish independence over Scotland’s recovery from the coronavirus pandemic.

Scotland has been ravaged by the pandemic, with thousands of people dying, the health service under huge pressure and the battered economy not expected to return to normal until at least 2023, according to experts.

Now former Prime Minister Gordon Brown has warned the SNP to focus on Scotland’s recovery from the pandemic and the possibility of rising unemployment rather than the constitution.

READ MORE: Scottish Election 2021: Ruth Davidson sounds warning

Writing in the Daily Record, he said: “This is no time for our political leaders to hunker down. They must recognise they have no greater duty than setting out measures to tackle this. That means an end to petty politicking.

“Devolution has given Scotland the power to act. The Covid crisis has handed the Scottish Government extra resources to support our economy and high streets.

“Nicola Sturgeon must do what I think even she knows is right – to put her constitutional argument to one side and focus on the job in front of her.

“What we need is concrete and ambitious policy. That’s why I am glad this week Scottish Labour is to set out its ideas, in a new National Recovery Plan for jobs.

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“Anas Sarwar has a strong sense of what needs to be done. He will set out plans to guarantee work for young people, to increase apprenticeships and to ensure those in work are able to upskill and change jobs to tackle the likely upheaval in the labour market.

“Devolution was designed to deliver Scottish solutions where there are Scottish problems but too often it has been reduced to a row between Nationalists and Unionists, which has taken us nowhere fast.”

Last week, Ms Sturgeon was torn apart for her “relentless pursuit” of achieving Scottish independence above all else.

Maurice Golden, the Scottish Conservatives’ Shadow Cabinet Secretary for the Economy, Fair Work and Culture branded the plan from the SNP to press ahead with a second referendum on Scottish independence at the end of the pandemic as “absolutely ludicrous” and “outrageous”.

He told Express.co.uk: “The SNP’s plan to press ahead with a Scottish independence referendum at the end of the Covid pandemic is absolutely ludicrous.

“The reverberations following the pandemic will last for years to come.

“Economic forecasters have said we might get back to normal by 2023 or 2024, so there is no time or space or legitimacy for holding an independence referendum in this next parliament.

“There is so much to do to restore Scotland and diverting resources to a referendum is outrageous.”

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