A FORMER senior trade union figure has been appointed general secretary of Scottish Labour.

John Paul McHugh takes on the post from former MSP James Kelly who has held the role since September 2021.

McHugh was assistant general secretary of the Community union until leaving the post in December, having been at the union for 15 years.

Scottish Labour leader Anas Sarwar said: “I am delighted that John Paul has been appointed as our party’s new general secretary.

“John Paul brings with him a wealth of experience and knowledge and will be ready to build on the great work done by outgoing general secretary, James Kelly.

READ MORE: Scottish Labour reject anti-SNP tactical voting ploy with Tories

“The people of Scotland need a Labour government and Scotland needs a strong Scottish Labour Party.

“Together, we can lock the Tories out of Downing Street and the SNP out of Bute House. Scottish Labour – the change that Scotland needs.”

McHugh said: “It is an honour and a privilege to join the team at this exciting and hopeful moment for our movement.

“I will do all that I can to build on the legacy left behind by James Kelly and do all I can to deliver the Labour government that Scotland desperately needs.”

Prior to joining the Community union, McHugh worked as a mechanical fitter.