I’VE just finished reading Friday’s National and am upset, to say the least, about our First Minister’s apparent intention to seek no means of obtaining independence other than via a Section 30 referendum. (FM rejects rebel plan for Scottish independence, October 11).

We presently have a Conservative government who have made it very clear they will not allow another referendum via a Section 30 order. They are the same government who seem to be taking steps to bypass Holyrood and take over many devolved issues. I don’t just mean those powers returning from the EU. I also refer to their intention to start paying local authorities directly.

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To me, and it seems from your letters pages to many others, this appears to be a blatant attack on our devolved government with the ultimate intention of closing it down. Even Nicola Sturgeon voiced her concern about that a couple of weeks ago.

Westminster has no intention of ever giving us another referendum on independence. In fact, I believe they want to end devolution altogether. If, or when, that happens we will never gain independence.

There’s no hope in Labour either. Even if they get to form the next government, which is unlikely, they have already said they will not allow another referendum during the “formative” years of a Labour government.

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Now, there’s every likelihood that we will be out of the EU soon – if not by October 31 then certainly some time next year. We will then have to endure all the damage that exiting the EU will bring to Scottish jobs and the economy, to say nothing of the food and medicine shortages which are predicted. And for how long? We could well be stuck outside the EU for several years, with all the economic damage that will entail through businesses going bust and others moving away. By the time we get another referendum will there be anything of Scotland left to salvage?

As far as I am aware, we joined this Union by way of a voluntary treaty. And as far as I am further aware, there is nothing contained in that treaty that requires us to ask permission before leaving it. We signed up to it voluntarily so we should equally be able to revoke it voluntarily. I’m sure that if England wanted to end it, they wouldn’t come to us and ask for our permission. The way they have tried to ride roughshod over the Good Friday Agreement, which is also an international treaty is surely proof of that.

Our Scottish Government should be seeking legal advice now about whether or not there is a legal requirement to even have a referendum at all before leaving. There was no referendum before signing up to it. In fact, the Scottish people didn’t want it. They rioted against it. And since it has now been made law at Westminster that the word of the Scottish people is sovereign over the Crown and Parliament, the Scottish people should be able to have their say without seeking a Section 30 order to make it legal.

We need to consider other options. We cannot depend on ever being given another section 30 order.

If a referendum is held, without a Section 30 order, the word of the Scottish people is still sovereign. Just hold an “advisory” referendum, which Holyrood is legally entitled to do, and then take the word of the Scottish people to Westminster and ask them to recognise the sovereignty of that word since they have already agreed that it is sovereign. If they don’t, then make an appeal to the European courts that Westminster is again refusing to uphold its own laws; although the way it has been going even an appeal to the Court of Session should be enough to have it declared sovereign and therefore to be obeyed. I hope so, because if we are out of the EU we may no longer be able to get help from the European courts.

Charlie Kerr