THE SNP group in Westminster is launching a bid to allow amendments to the Scotland Act so that Holyrood can hold an independence referendum.

The party is set to use its Opposition Day debate on Wednesday afternoon to bring forward a motion which seeks to take over the House of Commons order paper on January 10, 2023. 

If successful, it would allow the SNP to present a Scotland Act 1998 (Amendment) Bill which would seek to change parts of schedule 5. 

Schedule 5 sets out the matters reserved to the UK Government under the legislation, including the constitution.

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The move intends to provide a mechanism to amend the Act so that the issue is no longer reserved to Westminster, and allow the Scottish Parliament to "act upon its mandate and legislate for an independence referendum".

The Supreme Court ruled that the Scottish Parliament did not hold the power to legislate for indyref2, as the constitution is a reserved matter under the Act and would infringe on Westminster's sovereignty. 

Now SNP group leader Stephen Flynn, who took over from Ian Blackford after he stood down after five and a half years, has said he intends to "unlock Westminster's denial of democracy" with the move. 

Ahead of Opposition Day, Flynn said: "Westminster's Trump-like denial of democracy is unsustainable and the recent Supreme Court ruling confirmed that any notion of the UK being a voluntary partnership of nations is over.

"Four polls in a row now show majority support for independence, but with both the Tories and Labour joined at the hip in blocking democracy, it cannot be business as usual at Westminster.

"We will use our Opposition Day to put forward the Scotland Act 1998 (Amendment) Bill and seek to take control of Parliament's order paper to unlock Westminster's denial of democracy.

"The mechanism – which will seek to amend the Scotland Act 1998 – will allow the Scottish Parliament to legislate for a referendum and reject any attempts by Westminster to impose a roadblock on Scotland's democratic journey to independence."

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Flynn said that the people of Scotland have already voted for a referendum and "now is the time for one".

He added: "That is a democratic reality that politicians at Westminster must wake up to.

“Scotland is an energy-rich country, yet we are being hammered by the highest heating bills on these islands, subjected to a Brexit we didn’t vote for and bearing the brunt of a Tory-made cost of living crisis.

"With Labour trying to out-Tory the Tories, it’s only with independence that we can stop paying the heavy toll of Westminster rule.”

The SNP's Opposition Day debate is scheduled for Wednesday afternoon, following PMQs and a general debate on Ukraine.