SCOTTISH Labour MSPs believe they were ordered by London to abstain on a motion calling for compensation for Waspi women, The National can reveal.

Anas Sarwar’s MSPs refused to vote on an SNP motion put before the Scottish Parliament on Wednesday which called on the UK Government to “pay compensation in full [to Waspi women] without delay”.

The National has spoken with Scottish Labour insiders who believe Sarwar’s party were ordered by UK Labour not to vote with the SNP.

One source said: “It happens all the time. In a sense, it’s not unreasonable to expect Scottish Labour and UK Labour to communicate and discuss positions on any given issue just so that everyone understands what everyone else is doing and what policy is.”

The National: Jackie Baillie

But they added that MSPs including Sarwar and his deputy Jackie Baillie (above) had photographs of them with Waspi women “plastered all over social media” making their abstention “just criminal, really”.

Another source confirmed to The National they had heard concern among some MSPs the order to abstain had come from UK Labour.

READ MORE: Labour abstain as MSPs back full compensation for Waspi women

Scottish Labour have insisted they back compensation for Waspi women, but in Parliament on Wednesday the party’s social justice spokesman Paul O’Kane quibbled with how much they should receive.

The MSP said while his party supported “principle that we must compensate” Waspi women, he believed Parliament must “reflect” on the level.

He added: “Labour supports the delivery of justice for Waspi women, but we are very clear that we need to ensure that Waspi women are part of that process and that any system of compensation is designed with those women in mind and that they are around the table when those decisions are made, because the ombudsman has made a number of recommendations about how any such system might work.

“Of course, it could involve blanket compensation or it could be about looking at individual cases, and I know that there is a variance of views among women on what should be done.”

The National: Waspi campaigners

It comes after a report found that women born in the 1950s did not have state pension changes communicated adequately and should receive apologies and pay-outs of up to £2950.

READ MORE: Scottish Labour overruled by UK leadership on supporting WASPI women

We previously revealed how Scottish Labour had forwarded UK Labour lines to MSPs and staff on Waspi women which urged them to not make “any unfunded spending commitments we cannot keep”.

Scottish Labour deny they were ordered to vote in a certain way by UK Labour.

A Scottish Labour spokesperson said: “All voting decisions for the [Scottish Parliamentary Labour Party] are made by the Scottish Labour Party.

“Scottish Labour is committed to supporting Waspi women and ensuring that all compensation is properly funded.”

UK Labour did not respond to a request for comment.