Hanvey to Introduce Self Determination Bill in the Commons
ALBA Westminster Leader Neale Hanvey MP has secured the opportunity to introduce and speak to a Bill in the House of Commons on Wednesday 1 February to amend the Scotland Act 1998, to transfer the Section 30 power to legislate for a Scottish Independence referendum, from Westminster to the Scottish Parliament.
The Scotland (Self Determination) Bill provides that the power to legislate for a Scottish Independence referendum may only be exercised where the Scottish public has demonstrated its support for the holding of such a referendum and that no such referendum may be held sooner than seven years after the previous such referendum.
In a statement Neale Hanvey MP said:
“The decision to legislate for an Independence referendum should rest with Holyrood not Westminster. That is why I am bringing forward this Bill to assert the right of the Scottish people to Self Determination, and to remind the UK Government that, however much they may argue to the contrary, it is the Scottish people who are sovereign, in the Scottish constitutional tradition of popular sovereignty.
“In presenting this Bill I am taking the fight for Scottish Democracy, for our right as a nation to determine our own future, to the heart of Westminster.
“The Bill transfers the Section 30 power, in the Scotland Act 1998, to legislate for a Scottish Independence Referendum, from Westminster to the Scottish Parliament. It is not a Bill in favour of Independence per se but rather about the Scottish people’s right to choose their own constitutional future. Therefore it is one which every democrat should support regardless of their view on Independence.
“The Bill is explicit that the power to hold a referendum can only be exercised where the Scottish public has demonstrated its support for the holding of such a referendum. That criteria has clearly been met in the successive mandates given by the Scottish people to their representatives in the Scottish Parliament.
“It goes on to state that no such referendum may be held sooner than seven years after the previous such referendum, which would bring Scotland into line with the provisions in the Good Friday agreement in relation to a border poll in Northern Ireland.
“At this important juncture in Scotland’s constitutional journey it is vital that the Yes movement and all Independence supporting MSPs and MPs continue to assert Scotland’s right to determine our own future and to use every avenue open to them to do so.
“It was evident to me on my election as an MP that the Scottish people had given me a clear instruction to advance the cause of Scottish Independence and I will continue to do that as should all Scottish Independence supporting MPs.”