THE Scottish Parliament has confirmed the appointment of Patrick Harvie and Lorna Slater as junior ministers. 

The Scottish Greens co-leaders have been appointed following a motion lodged by First Minister Nicola Sturgeon in Holyrood this afternoon. 

There were 69 votes for yes, 56 for no and no abstentions, therefore the motion passed. 

Harvie is now Zero Carbon Buildings, Active Travel and Tenants’ Rights Minister while Slater has taken on the role of Minister for Green Skills, Circular Economy and Biodiversity.

Among Harvie’s responsibilities will be driving the move from high-carbon transport and heating to greener alternatives, while ensuring fairness during the transition.

READ MORE: FMQs: Scottish Greens not entitled to question, says presiding officer

Meanwhile, Slater’s responsibilities will include the Green Industrial Strategy as well as dealing with national parks.

The First Minister moved the motion in her name earlier this afternoon and said that it would make history as the first time the Green party have entered national government in Scotland, the UK or "any part of this islands”. 

Moving the motion in her name, the First Minister said: "Our co-operation agreement commits us to a raft of commitments necessary to steer Scotland through the challenges we face - action to support tenants and tackle poverty, plans to reform public services, investments to accelerate our transition to Net Zero and create green jobs, and so much more besides. 

"These ministers appointed from the ranks of the Greens will now share responsibility but also the great privilege of delivering on this bold, ambitious programme."

The National:

Slater (left) and Harvie (right) are now official junior ministers in the Scottish Government

The First Minister added that having worked previously with Harvie during the 2014 independence referendum she was “genuinely enthusiastic” to work with him again in government. 

On Slater, Sturgeon said that although she was new to parliament her "“formidable professional experience” in the renewables industry and project management experience put her in "good stead" for a ministerial brief.

She said that the two Green ministers will be "leading and implementing some of the most significant transformations we need to make to tackle the climate emergency".

Sturgeon added: "I have complete confidence that both new ministers will make an excellent contribution to the Scottish Government. Presiding Officer - Patrick, Lorna, myself and the rest of the ministerial team are ready to get on with delivering our ambitious commitments and building a fairer, greener Scotland."

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The opposition party leaders were then given a slot to give their views.

Douglas Ross, who said the Tory party were not going to vote for the motion, claimed the Greens gave up any "pretence of being opposition".

He claimed the Greens were trying to "rig" the Scottish Parliament, and said: "If you vote Green you really get SNP yellow.

“Instead of front this up for what it is, a coalition, the Greens wanted to have their cake and eat it.

"Somehow they were still trying to pretend that they were in opposition while they were in government.”

Scottish Labour leader Anas Sarwar said: “I’d like to welcome Patrick Harvie and Lorna Slater to their new roles, but I fear that they will very quickly realise that the SNP’s rhetoric does not match reality.

"I think they’ll also quickly realise that the divider in chief can only act as the great unifier for so long, and I also think they’ll come to realise that cooperation to Nicola Sturgeon means rolling over and doing what your told."

Meanwhile, LibDem leader Alex Cole-Hamilton described the deal as a "pale imitation" of the New Zealand co-operation agreement it was based on.

The National:

Greer spoke on behalf of the Scottish Greens during the debate welcoming the "historic" deal

Speaking on behalf of the Greens, West of Scotland MSP Ross Greer said that the appointments were a "moment 48 years in the making for the Greens".

He said: "This afternoon, we’ll take our first place in Government, the first Greens anywhere in the UK to do so.

"We sometimes overuse the word historic in politics but this is genuinely a historic moment, a new party, a new movement, a new politics is entering government. That’s happened half a dozen times in the last century.

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"Patrick Harvie will be to the best of my knowledge, the first minister for tenants who was himself evicted by an unscrupulous landlord. In fact, I think he’s the first minister to have tenants in their job title."

Greer added that Slater brings real industry experience and expertise to bring about a successful just transition to renewables. 

He said: "It’s hard to think of someone more qualified to take on the role of minister for green skills and industrial strategy than Lorna."

We told how the practicalities of the cooperation agreement will work are becoming clearer, as the Scottish Greens are now not entitled to a question at FMQs, amongst other changes.