A MEMBER of the SNP’s governing body is threatening to quit if the party does not consider appointing forensic auditors.

Bill Ramsay, the convener of the SNP Trade Union Group – the party’s largest affiliate and its representative on the National Executive Committee (NEC) – expressed frustration over recent events and said he had been raising issues on party transparency for some time.

It comes amid a row over the party’s auditors, as it emerged last week that Johnston Carmichael had resigned.

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Earlier this week Humza Yousaf confirmed that the auditors had left around six months prior – and it emerged that the SNP were struggling to find a replacement firm.

It is understood that members of the NEC were not informed of the auditors leaving.

The row comes days after former SNP chief executive Peter Murrell was arrested, then released, as police investigate the party’s finances.

The NEC is now due to meet this weekend to discuss the replacement process for Murrell’s role, and oversee a new review of transparency and governance in the party.

Former SNP minister Alex Neil is among those calling for forensic accountants - who can be involved in investigating fraud and professional negligence - to be brought in. 

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Speaking exclusively to The National on Wednesday, Ramsay said: “In June last year, as the world was moving out of governance restrictions imposed by Covid, I was making calls for more transparency. Indeed, I forced a vote to ensure that members of the NEC could see how other members were voting.

“Likewise, I have been calling for NEC meetings to be in-person as well as online. That was only acceded to when the new leader took office. I have also made repeated calls for a paper outlining the liabilities effecting NEC members and its relation to matters of governance. I am still awaiting a written response to that reasonable request.

“My call for a full-day NEC meeting to address the way the party is run is still being resisted, it seems, with the next NEC on Saturday 15th April once again being just a half-day event. This, and talk of a review, is not taking the need for urgent change nearly seriously enough.

“If the call to appoint forensic auditors is not moved forward, I will have to seriously consider whether I can continue on the NEC.”

The SNP have been contacted for comment.