THE last time I wrote to you I started off by stating: “Pages 4-5 of Thursday’s National says it all.”

This was the headline “We can’t afford to stay in the UK” (August 27). Now I can confidently state that pages 4-5 of last Thursday’s National says it even more emphatically: “Independence is our only protection” (September 10).

We can’t afford to take the risk, financial or legal, of remaining in the UK any longer. I have lost count of the number of times I have written to you expressing the opinion that Boris Johnson and his cronies fully intend taking over all the powers previously devolved to Holyrood. The content of the Internal Market Bill makes this clear. It not only breaches international law and the EU Withdrawal Bill, but it also breaches the Devolution Settlement and thereby the Scotland Act, and, I believe, is also a clear breach of the Good Friday Agreement.

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It is quite clear that this bill will take back control of most of the powers Scotland thought belonged to it through devolution. It will allow Westminster to over-rule anything the Scottish Parliament enacts if it doesn’t suit them. It is, in effect, the dissolution of devolution in Scotland in all but the name. I have already stated that it is my belief they (Westminster), will restart to govern Scotland from their debating chamber in Queen Elizabeth House. This bill also allows them to start funding local authorities directly, and prevent Holyrood from making the adjustments needed to suit Scotland’s situation. That was one of the main reasons for devolution – the ability to adjust legislation to take into account regional differences.

But Johnson doesn’t want any “regional differences”. He wants an internal market that suits England. He will get that by doing away with devolution and making everything “British”. That’s why there are so many items in our supermarkets bearing the Union Flag. That’s why Marks and Spencer are selling “British Haggis”. In Boris’s book everything will be British. There will be no Scottish.

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Even Nicola Sturgeon has stated that the only way to protect the powers of the Scottish Government is with independence. Fighting talk! But, unfortunately, she is not prepared to back it up – either through a Section 30 request made immediately, or an advisory referendum if that is refused. All we get is “when an independence referendum comes – as it will”. But when will it? I don’t want to wait until our economy has been mortally wounded by Boris’s No-Deal Brexit; or until half the population of Scotland is on the dole because of the estimated job losses that Brexit will bring; or until half the tourist industry has been closed down because hotels and restaurants are no longer able to stay open; or until we are all starving from the lack of food on the supermarket shelves.

Instead, her Government “will fight it tooth and nail”. How will she manage that when Boris already has 3500 troops on standby in case of civil unrest? This Internal Market Bill will pull any teeth the Scottish Government may have left to fight with.

Despite the criticism that has been levelled at Kenny MacAskill due to his comments about many of those in the Yes movement becoming disillusioned, what he has said is correct. I know of several people who were very active during the 2014 referendum who are now completely fed up with the lack of action on independence from the SNP Government. You can only ask people to be patient for a certain amount of time, but that time does not extend to the point where we are all having to put up with unnecessary Brexit hardships, or when we run out of the medication for permanent illness or disability due to the anticipated delays with over half our medicines coming from, or through, Europe.

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If Sturgeon doesn’t act, then she may well find her support dwindling away. A look at Ian Blackford’s twitter site will reveal hundreds of replies to his tweet about the only solution to the Internal Market Bill being independence. Every one of them calls for an immediate referendum or the Holyrood election before the end of this year.

Charlie Kerr Glenrothes