NICOLA Sturgeon has pledged Scots will get their chance to have their say on independence in 2023 whether Boris Johnson is in office for another year or not.

The Prime Minister narrowly dodged having to make a resignation speech on Monday after he won a confidence vote by 211 votes to 148.

Under current rules, it means he is now safe for a year but having lost the backing of the vast majority of his backbenchers, there is consensus his days are numbered.

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And we asked Sturgeon whether she’d be grateful to have him forced out of number 10 given he has made it clear he will not hand her a section 30 order to enable her to hold another independence referendum.

But she said it would make no difference whether he stays or goes and vowed Scots would get a referendum on leaving the UK in the first half of this parliament term.

During the opening of a new Scottish Trade Union Congress (STUC) hub in Glasgow, she told the National: “People in Scotland will have the ability to make their views known on independence whether Boris Johnson is Prime Minister or not because that is democracy and that’s what I’m focused on.

“I have a mandate to give people the choice within the first half of this parliament and I intend to honour that mandate and I will set out more details on that shortly.”

Sturgeon was in Bridgeton on Tuesday to open up the STUC's new Margaret Irwin building which will provide the organisation and Scotland’s wider trade union movement with a national hub for trade union engagement and excellence. 

She said the result of Monday’s confidence vote underlined the democratic deficit in Scotland after just two out of 59 Scottish MPs supported Johnson. 

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She insisted the country was now stuck with a “lame duck Prime Minister” and described the result as the “worst of all worlds for the Tories”.

But she batted away suggestions that the SNP were enjoying seeing Boris Johnson struggle.

She added: “What’s in the best interests of the SNP if of course of interest to me but sometimes you have to think what’s in the biggest interests of the country.

“Scotland is my priority but the UK as a whole is facing some of the biggest challenges that have been faced in most of our lifetimes and the UK deserves a Prime Minister focused on these challenges.

“Leadership is about rising above the interests of your own party and considering what’s in the best interests of the country.”