HAVING read many comments about the Prime Minister’s veiled threat to remove the powers that the Scottish Government has over the devolved Scottish NHS, what no-one appears to have pointed out is that the Scotland Act 1998 actually precludes any such threat being made. Given the UK Supreme Court’s upholding of the removal (temporarily, and believe that if you like) of those devolved powers that will be returned from the EU if we Brexit, and the assumed flexibility of the Sewel Convention on consent, this is a very different matter.

Those powers, held just now by the EU, were never actually in the hands of the Scottish Government to begin with (although that does not make any difference to the lack of respect from Westminster on this issue) and would go straight from the EU to Westminster, while the removal of the Scottish NHS from Holyrood’s powers would be an act of such aggressive theft that it could never be other than an ultra vires action by Westminster – therefore wholly illegal and unconstitutional.

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It is time “the three amigos” on the British nationalist benches were told so, as they dutifully carry out the orders of their London masters to attack the Scottish Government on health issues. They are acting in a manner that is wholly illegitimate. In no circumstances, and under no reading of the UKSC ruling, could such a move be justified on any level. Furthermore, if they continue their attacks on the Scottish NHS in the run-up to the election, they should be informed that they will be reported to the Electoral Commission, and if they persist, they will be served with a court order on the basis that they are conflating reserved and devolved powers in a General Election, and acting ultra vires.

Now, to come to the impending election, and the all-too-foreseeable alliance of “the three amigos” against any mention even of independence, this, too, is illegitimate according to the norms of international mores, that is, the UN Charter, Article 1 (2): “To develop friendly relations among nations based on respect for the principle of equal rights and self-determination of peoples.” To make every election about blocking independence is completely illegitimate according to international mores.

The deliberate blocking of our voice on Brexit is totally in opposition to “respect for the principle of equal rights” and trying to silence us and crush our aspirations for independence is totally in opposition to the principle of “self-determination of peoples”. Again, it is time that both the feeble three and the electorate were all informed in no uncertain terms that their actions are contrary to the mores of the international community and to the presumed mores of the Westminster UK Government that is a signatory to the UN Charter.

Yes, we lost the 2014 referendum, but, again, disparate and unconnected groups – except in one aspect, their opposition to and illegitimate acting around independence – fall in the light of Brexit and the utterly changed circumstances and political landscape in which we find ourselves. They quite simply have no legitimate mandate or basis on which to found their wholly illegitimate acting, and are being oppressive towards a legitimate aspiration by a nation that has every right to seek salvation in self-determination.

I would caution those three British nationalist parties that, if they show themselves willing, now, to act illegitimately according to agreed international principles and mores, to those moreover that the UK Government signed up to, they could find themselves having to explain their actions in the International Court of Justice. I would also caution those voters who are opposed to independence to the extent that they are willing to stymie the legitimate aspirations of the Scots, that they should think twice about what they are doing.

Lorna Campbell
via email