AN SNP government minister has issued a statement after undergoing major surgery.

Richard Lochhead, who was appointed the Minister for Business in John Swinney’s new minority government last week, put out the statement on Thursday morning.

Last weekend, the Moray MSP was transferred to Aberdeen Royal Infirmary from Dr Gray’s Hospital – where he was admitted after a “few days of feeling ill”.

Lochhead has since undergone major surgery, with the statement from the MSP’s office stating that he is now recovering in ICU and, ‘despite some initial complications”, is now in a “stable condition and making good progress”.

The statement went on: “It is hard for us to find the words to express our deep gratitude to the NHS staff involved in Richard's care. He and his family have been blown away by the compassion, dedication, and skill of clinicians both in Elgin and Aberdeen. We will never be able to thank them enough for all they've done - and continue to do - for him.

“Richard and his family have been touched by the many well wishes they've received. As he focuses on his recovery, we would ask that those wishing to reach out continue to do so via his constituency office.

“We continue to work on constituency casework on Richard's behalf while he takes the time to get well. Anyone in need of assistance can get in touch as normal by email, phone, or visiting the office.”

First Minister John Swinney – a longtime colleague of Lochhead – posted on X, formerly Twitter, that his “love, thoughts, encouragement and support are with Richard, Fiona and their family”.