AT the end of the debate on Humza Yousaf’s Programme for Government, Douglas Ross was accused of misleading the parliamentary chamber.

The accusation was made by Health Secretary Michael Matheson, who lodged a point of order before Depute Presiding Officer Anabelle Ewing MSP concluded the debate.

It higlighted an accusation Ross made earlier - he claimed Matheson was refusing to meet with the Save Our Surgeries Burghead Hopeman group in the Scottish Tory leader's constituency.

Matheson said: “During the course of the debate earlier on this afternoon, Mr Ross, during his contribution stated, and I quote: ‘I mention Mr Matheson because he has refused to meet with GP campaigners in my local area and I had to write to him several times on this matter’.

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“As Mr Ross says, it is important that the chamber has all the facts on these matters. Presiding Officer, I was due to meet with the campaign group which Mr Ross refers to at 2.30pm this afternoon.

“In fact, Mr Ross was actually invited to attend that meeting, but unfortunately, because of parliamentary business we both had to be in the chamber, and the meeting had to be cancelled last week. As a result, my office actually extended two further dates over the course of the next two weeks to meet with that campaign group and for Mr Ross to be able to attend that meeting.

“It’s very clear Presiding Officer that the comments made by Mr Ross, that I had refused to meet with the campaign group is inaccurate and is misleading the chamber.

“Given the need to make sure that comments that are made by members in this chamber are accurate can you advise me how Mr Ross can go about setting the record straight and removing the inaccurate accusation he has made in his comments?”

Ewing thanked Matheson for his contribution, but stated what he had contributed was not a point of order.

A point of order is when a member “may in any proceedings question whether proper procedures have been or are being followed”, according to the parliamentary website.

Ross himself then made a point of order.

“First of all, the meeting has been cancelled, and the alternative dates were not suitable for another Scottish Government minister, so we are now looking into October," he said.

This was met with noise from members to which Ewing asked for quiet. Ross continued: “Secondly, the Health Secretary is on record in the official report of this parliament refusing to meet with the group because when I asked him in health questions, he said it wouldn’t be appropriate to meet.

“And finally, the reason I raised it today Depute Presiding Officer, and I know SNP MSPs will want to hear this, it’s because yesterday the Save Our Surgeries Burghead Hopeman’s Facebook page said ‘we are very disappointed that our planned meeting with the cabinet secretary for health, Michael Matheson, has been cancelled due to his other commitment.

“Our community has been left without proper services for long enough and we need action now’ they finished”, Ross concluded. "’Impatiently awaiting a new date’, we are all impatiently awaiting that new date, and the Health Secretary should respond immediately.”

Ewing again stated the contribution was not a point of order but advised the leader of the Scottish Tories “there is various routes” to pursue the matter.

This was followed by MSPs Mairi McAllan and Rachael Hamilton also making contributions to be told they were not point of orders.