OVER the last couple of weeks the British establishment has started to amplify its position that if the Scottish Government requests to hold a Scottish independence referendum then Scotland will be told no. We have begun to hear the vintage lines from the UK Government, its commentators and its supporters, classics such as “now is not the time” and “it was once in a lifetime” are on constant repeat at the moment.

At this week’s PMQs my colleague Kirsty Blackman highlighted the point that in Scotland the Prime Minister does not have a mandate for her dodgy deal or a no-deal Brexit scenario. In typical pompous fashion the Tory leader fired back at Kirsty that the SNP has no mandate to continue on our journey to see Scotland become an independent country.

Ian Blackford MP raised a point of order at this ridiculous answer from the Prime Minister however she had already darted out the Commons quicker than Usain Bolt before Ian had the chance to address her statement.

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It is completely beyond me how anybody could be so delusional to argue that our Scottish Government does not have a mandate to ask the Scottish people if they wish to take another path other than this Brexit car crash.

For a start we elected the SNP to govern the Scottish Parliament in 2016 and in that manifesto it stated, “We believe that the Scottish Parliament should have the right to hold another referendum if there is clear and sustained evidence that independence has become the preferred option of a majority of the Scottish people – or if there is a significant and material change in the circumstances that prevailed in 2014, such as Scotland being taken out of the EU against our will”. This was then followed by a majority of the elected Scottish Parliament voting to propose a referendum back in 2017.

The National: Theresa May didn't hang around in the Commons after telling a blatant lie about the indyref mandateTheresa May didn't hang around in the Commons after telling a blatant lie about the indyref mandate

Negotiations took place between our First Minister and the Prime Minister back in 2017 and it was agreed that due to the vast complications that the Conservative Government are having with Brexit that it would be best to wait it out, so to speak.It would also give the Scottish Parliament time to contribute to the Brexit debate and make sure we get what is best for the people of Scotland. Now, I understand the eagerness of campaigners for independence but this was a pretty logical move as by March 2019 we would know what the outcome would be and we would have been able to have our voice heard on this extremely important issue of exiting the European Union.Voters who are wondering if independence for Scotland is the answer over Brexit will have a much clearer picture of what that decision looks like now than they ever would have been able to in 2017.

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However, for almost two years since that decision was taken to hold off on calling a referendum the Scottish Government and SNP MPs have been ignored at every possible stage in the Brexit negotiations. For the Prime Minister to have the audacity to say that Scotland does not have a mandate for independence at this point is completely farcical.

Now to move away from the parliamentary politics of this situation and even the Brexit debate for a moment, because we have established the logical reasons that the Scottish Government would be well within their right to call for a referendum to leave this unequal union of nations.

This UK Government have inflicted almost a decade of austerity on the poorest people in Scotland. Food bank usage is at an all-time high, my office is inundated with problems with PIP, ESA and the Government’s flagship disaster Universal Credit.

People in Scotland are fed up of it. Independence is a way out of this Orwellian novel we are currently living in.

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We are fed up of being told the UK are saving for a rainy day because my goodness quite a few of those have been and gone already, with this cuts obsessed Government showing no remorse as they put more and more families into poverty.

Independence is a chance to not be dictated to by warped, out of touch policy decisions that have been thought up by Eton boys in a cigar room over a plate of swan. This is the real world and real people are being left in hopeless situations by a UK Government that wasn’t elected in Scotland.

The Tories haven’t won an election in Scotland since the 1950s yet they think it is appropriate to dictate to us our right to self-determination. Change is coming whether the UK establishment like it or not and I think it would be a big mistake for the Prime Minister at this crucial point in British political history not to listen to our First Minister. The lifeboat is on its way.