MICHAEL Russell has hit out at the UK media and Government’s “bogus fetishisation” of a majority at Holyrood as a mandate for a second independence referendum.

Writing exclusively in tomorrow’s Sunday National, the SNP president accused political opponents of being “determined to delegitimise Scottish democracy”.

Among others, Tory MSP Murdo Fraser tweeted to say that, despite the SNP winning 62 out of the 73 constituencies in Scotland, it “looks like a majority of Scottish voters have backed parties standing on a platform opposing indyref2”.

He added: “Democracy demands that we listen to them.”

In the constituency vote, the SNP took around 48% of all the ballots and the Greens around 1%. The Labour party and Conservatives took 22% each, while the LibDems recorded 7%.

READ MORE: SNP emphatically won election and indyref2 must now happen, Nicola Sturgeon says

Sam Coates, the deputy political editor of Sky News, came under fire on social media after saying that the number of votes “probably matters more” than the numbers of MSPs elected.

Russell takes issue with this narrative in his column to be published tomorrow, saying it is a standard applied to Holyrood that Westminster is spared.

The former Argyll and Bute MSP writes: “The share of the vote that the SNP achieved on Thursday is considerably greater not just than that won by Boris Johnson in the 2019 Westminster election (when he secured a Westminster majority of 80), but is also more than ten points higher than David Cameron’s vote share in 2015, which allowed him to hold the Brexit referendum with no questions asked about his mandate.”

Russell, whose old Holyrood seat was won by SNP’s Jenni Minto, also offers advice to new parliamentarians who will be taking their place in the chamber for the first time on May 13.

You can read Michael Russell's full piece exclusively in tomorrow’s Sunday National.