Scotland’s first female minister appears before MSPs on several allegations that she broke the ministerial code
Jackie Baillie, Scottish Labor, asks Sturgeon about WhatsApp messages sent between high-ranking party officials that Salmond has cited as evidence of a conspiracy. She asks if the Prime Minister asked to see her?
Sturgeon says she has made some effort and seen in context that they are not inconvenient. She refers to four messages that Salmond quoted in his evidence on Friday.She says she looked at them and starts trying to them explaining in context, however, is interrupted by the host, who says the committee will see news later and it would be inappropriate to form an opinion about it beforehand
Mitchell says Salmond claims the policy was later signed and the complaints were filed before the policy was signed
According to Sturgeon, the complainants initially got in touch in November 2017 but filed their formal complaints in January 2018 December 2017 was signed
Allan asks the Prime Minister if she has any view on why documents that Salmond claims support his position have not been made public
Sturgeon replies that if you want to bring up the idea that there is a concerted, malicious campaign going on, “you have to prove it” If these documents are supported, the first minister argues that someone from the police or the court would have seen them. She also claims that material has been taken out of context and that she has seen nothing to suggest Salmond’s allegation of a conspiracy against him. p>
Alasdair Allan, SNP, asks if anyone gave her an explanation on the possible press release on the allegations
Sturgeon reiterates that following a request for freedom of information, some of the information in this press release has been disclosed
Allan asks Sturgeon if the Scottish government should have looked into mediating the allegations and then settling the dispute in the process. He has alleged that Sturgeon agreed to intervene
The first minister says “these things have been taken into account” She said the issue is not whether this should have happened but whether she should have intervened to bring it about and it would have been wrong for her to do so She adds that she felt that mediation and arbitration were “means” to thwart the natural course of the investigation
Allan quotes Salmond, claiming that there was a fishery against him to contact people about complaints. He asks the First Minister if she knew about it
Sturgeon responds by stating that it is “a duty of care” It wasn’t a fishing exercise, but it was “perfectly appropriate” She is frightened to hear allegations that people fabricated accusations that the applicants may have supported one another, but the idea of a conspiracy is neither factual nor credible, says Sturgeon
Alex Cole-Hamilton, Scottish Lib Dems, asks Sturgeon when she first learned that an officer had filed a complaint about Salmond
The first minister said she was aware that there might be concerns, but it wasn’t until Jan. On April 1st, when she saw the letter from the permanent secretary, they got concrete April had the awareness that there might be a complaint, “a general awareness,” but it was reading the letter that gave her the “knowledge” as opposed to the general awareness March with Geoff Aberdein, Salmond’s former chief of staff, she had “a feeling of discomfort” She was unaware of any specific complaints, but had “a persistent suspicion” that something might exist
Can you see why people feel misled by their version of events? According to Cole-Hamilton, that changed when more information was released This refers to interviews with Andrew Marr from the BBC and Sophy Ridge from Sky
Sturgeon says she was worried early on that an investigation was going and she didn’t want to make headlines.She says she understands why “people might see this”
Cole-Hamilton says breaching confidentiality is a criminal offense So are you surprised that the senior government official denies having named Geoff Aberdein any of the complainants?
Sturgeon says there is not much more she can say on the matter, but claims Alex Salmond gave her the name of one of the complainants and that he knew the other person’s identity
Sturgeon says she respects the committee’s procedures, including not contacting other witnesses
Cole-Hamilton says he found it strange that the day before the Daily Record story came out, the government prepared a press release detailing the investigation
Sturgeon replies that it was not her press release. She believes the press release was planned because there was a freedom of information request that would have resulted in the disclosure of some of that information
Cole-Hamilton says the report was forwarded to the Crown Agent against the police’s wishes Was this the right thing?
Sturgeon says there have been allegations of crime The Scottish government has a duty to take action if it believes that crime has been committed She says it does not know how strong the complainants’ objections were, she adds that she would also have been criticized if she had done the opposite
Murdo Fraser, Scottish Conservative, Says Salmond’s Former Chief of Staff Geoff Aberdein’s claim that he was given the name of a complainant against Salmond by a senior government official was confirmed by Salmond’s attorney, Duncan Hamilton, and Party Strategist Kevin Pringle that the senior government official denies this?
Sturgeon says she can only go on with what she was told about this conversation April 2018 and that Salmond knew the identities of the two applicants because he apologized to one of them and identified the other by looking through the Scottish Government’s Flickr account, repeating that she was not involved in this conversation was
Sturgeon adds that she can imagine why this complainant’s name might have been known at the time, but that does not mean it was revealed in the manner said
Sturgeon says it is not. She is trying to respect the ongoing process, namely this investigation and the investigation into possible violations of the Ministerial Code. Sturgeon adds that the police do not need their authority to investigate
Baillie asks when Sturgeon learned of a leak in the Daily Record, which published two stories detailing complainants. Where do you think the leaks came from?
“I don’t know,” says Sturgeon that they are not from her or someone acting on her behalf. She says Salmond claimed some details must have been from the decision report, but the decision report was not sent to her. p>
Baillie says she learned the Daily Record received allegations against Salmond for publishing another story about Sturgeon
First minister refuses, saying she has never heard this before.She asks Baillie what the story was about her, but Baillie says she doesn’t know the timing would be an incredible coincidence, says Sturgeon
First Minister agrees that it was very serious The government did not benefit in any way. She repeats that it did not come from her or someone under her authority.According to Sturgeon, there was a review by the Information Commissioner’s Office (ICO) Baillie denies this characterization of the ICO’s conclusions Sturgeon doesn’t know why it wasn’t investigated by the police
Sturgeon says she doesn’t know where the leak came from Salmond and his lawyers had access to it, she doesn’t know who in the Scottish government had access to it under pressure from Baillie to ask the police to investigate, Sturgeon says , she’ll think about it, but the ICO has been investigating possible crime
Jackie Baillie, Scottish Labor, said at an early meeting, a senior government official gave Salmond former chief of staff Geoff Aberdein details of complaints and the identity of a complainant. Was this approved by Sturgeon?
Sturgeon says she is restricted by legal restrictions, but understands that the meeting did not take place as described. Sturgeon adds that she does not remember that Salmond was aware of the applicants’ identity when she was revealed him on 2 April 2018 met
She says Salmond knew the applicants’ identities because he apologized to one of them and he also conducted some investigations into Scottish Government social media accounts
She denies that a complainant’s name was given In response to pressure from Baillie to accuse Aberdein and others of being present at that meeting of lying, Sturgeon says her version will not be accepted by the senior government official involved
Stuart McMillan, SNP, asks the Prime Minister if she was involved in the formal complaint process?
McMillan asks if Sturgeon accepts that something went wrong and what is being done to keep things from going wrong in the future?
Sturgeon replies that she already apologized this morning for something went wrong and that steps are being taken to ensure that similar errors don’t happen again
Did you feel you had a broad base to introduce a new sexual harassment policy?
The first minister said she was having a discussion at the time with Theresa May who was concerned about addressing the issue, but she would not use this to claim the UK government had endorsed what the Scottish government was doing Sturgeon believes there was general agreement among unions that it was not inappropriate to put a policy in place and apply it to the former minister
Allan asks why the Prime Minister and the Deputy Prime Minister have different roles in the new procedure than in the previous Fairness at Work policy?
Sturgeon replies that the world has changed in the light of the MeToo movement and that it is important to address perceptions.She says it is best if a prime minister is as far away as possible so there was no question whether a first minister of the same party as the person who was the subject of the complaint was deemed nuisance for political reasons
Sturgeon replies that the government didn’t expect what was going to turn out, maybe they should have. The government was ready for a judicial review and by the time the bug was discovered it was ready to take Salmond’s action defend The government was “as confident as it could ever be” that it could succeed
She says Salmond was not only a very close political colleague for most of her life, but also a friend and someone she looked up to
Alasdair Allan, SNP, asked Sturgeon to explain her distinction between using the Harassment Investigation Procedure against Ministers found to be illegal and the procedure itself?
The mistake was that the investigating officer was in contact with the complainants beforehand It wasn’t the foundations of the policy that were unlawful, Sturgeon says. If Salmond’s lawsuit had been subjected to a full judicial review, it might or might not have established the legality of the trial
At this point it would have been difficult to say that historical complaints were not a priority in the face of the MeToo movement
Allan cites Sturgeon Salmond’s claim as evidence that people may have overreacted in the wake of the MeToo movement
Sturgeon disagrees, saying three years later there is an argument that there was indeed an underreaction because not enough has changed
Wightman asked if Sturgeon was aware of the legality concerns of retroactive application in the process of drafting the policy
Wightman asks what efforts have been made to inform former ministers that they may be the subject of complaints
Sturgeon Says That Was Not The Case At one time a draft letter was being drafted to the first minister, but Sturgeon felt it was not appropriate for a personnel policy
Andy Wightman, Independent, Says Officials Has Concerns and Remains Concerns About Harassment Will the First Minister take these concerns seriously?
Sturgeon says she doesn’t know there was an incident that Salmond apologized for in 2013 or that allegedly had concerns about his sexual behavior.She said she wants everyone to have confidence that their concerns will be taken seriously
Sturgeon says it can be difficult to level charges against – especially – men of power when they are in that position of power
Yes, clearly Salmond seemed to be saying that the complaints could not have been investigated as the policy should not have been retroactive, says the first minister
Watt asks if Sturgeon was aware of allegations against current or former ministers while the new case was being drafted
Sturgeon does not say at first, but then a media organization – Sky – drew her attention to allegations against the former first minister, but this did not affect her behavior
According to Watt, incidents in the past have been dealt with informally; B. Employees were hired so they wouldn’t have to work with the person they were accusing or an apology was given. Was that appropriate she asks
Sometimes it might be appropriate, says Sturgeon, but she expresses concern that there may have been too much reliance on informal procedures as she does not appear to have received some complaints
Why is there a difference in the fact that mediation is open to the current minister under fairness at work, but not available to former ministers under the new procedures, asks Watt?
Former ministers could not be investigated under the old policy of fairness at work, according to Sturgeon, she says with a current minister they will still be in the workplace and possibly working together so mediation might be appropriate
According to Watt, it took about 18 months to develop the existing fairness-at-work policy, but the new procedures under which Salmond was investigated were devised in a much shorter period of time
Sturgeon said they wanted to do it quickly, with no rough edges or inappropriately. It was done with the involvement of the unions and 18 months would have been too long
Maureen Watt, SNP, asks why a new trial was deemed necessary to investigate allegations such as those made against Salmond
Sturgeon Says Salmond’s evidence impressed her that there shouldn’t be any trial that would allow him to be investigated, according to Sturgeon, organizations around the world have been reviewing their trials in the face of the MeToo movement, according to Sturgeon. It was “appropriate,” historical To investigate allegations – the policy has been applied retrospectively –
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