SNP MP David Linden has announced he has quit the party's front bench in Westminster.

The Shadow Work and Pensions Secretary said that he intends to spend more time focussing on constituency work and will no longer serve in his shadow cabinet role.

Linden, MP for Glasgow East, was appointed to the role which focussed heavily on benefits and pensions in February 2021.

READ MORE: Ukrainian refugee on fleeing Kyiv for Scotland and her new home in Montrose

SNP Westminster leader Ian Blackford thanked Linden for his "tireless work" and confirmed that Kirsty Blackman, SNP MP for Aberdeen North, will be making a return to the front bench to take over the role. 

It comes just a month after Linden was disciplined, alongside fellow Glasgow MP Chris Stephens, by SNP Chief whip Owen Thomson for defying the party whip over a vote on the Social Security (Up-rating of Benefits) Bill. Linden and Stephens voted against the Bill, while the rest of the SNP group abstained. 

Linden announced his front bench resignation on Twitter, writing: "It's been a privilege to serve on the SNP frontbench in Westminster, but I've decided to step down in order to focus more of my time on constituency casework.

"12 years of Tory austerity has already hammered the very poorest in our communities - and the current cost of living crisis is only making that even worse, so I want to focus all my efforts on dealing more with day to day constituency work."

Blackford later wrote: "I want to thank @DavidLinden for his tireless work as the SNP's Work & Pensions spokesperson.

READ MORE: Len McCluskey urges 'stagnating' Labour to support indyref2

"He's been an outstanding advocate for the most vulnerable and has led on key campaigns on opposing Universal Credit cuts and holding the UK Gov to account.

"I wish David well as he looks to focus on his constituency and standing up for the people of Glasgow East. I know he will continue to be one of the most effective voices holding the Tories to account in Parliament.

"I'd like to welcome @KirstySNP back to the frontbench as the party's new Shadow Work & Pensions spokesperson. Kirsty brings to the role a wealth of experience in Westminster & will play a crucial role in challenging the DWP & championing people's priorities."

The National: Kirsty Blackman MP (Aberdeen North, Scottish National Party)speaking after Prime Minister Theresa May made a statement in the House of Commons, London, where she told MPs that tomorrow's "meaningful vote" on her Brexit deal had been

Blackman (above) added: "I am delighted to be returning to the frontbench to take on my new role as @theSNP’s Shadow Secretary of State for Work and Pensions at Westminster

"I look forward to working to hold this Tory Gov to account over their damaging policies which have targeted the most vulnerable in society and pushed many more people into hardship - as well as using my role to be a strong voice for the people of Scotland at Westminster."