I READ with interest Julia Pannell’s letter in the Sunday National (May 3). There is much rhetoric but little substance in this letter.

The attack on the SNP and its leadership is of course her prerogative but it has to have a sound basis, particularly during this pandemic which consumes us all at this time.

References to Sillars and McKenna to back up her argument I believe not only fail but are misplaced. I am not sure that the thoughtful Kevin McKenna would agree that he was “shredding the SNP strategy”.

The facts are that any attempt at aggressive campaigning and to politicise the Covid-19 pandemic as a conscious policy by the SNP would be doomed to failure.

READ MORE: Letters: The SNP strategy of not rocking the boat is risky

The Scottish public in general will not take kindly to an SNP that states that their policy on handling the coronavirus is better and more effective than the Tory Westminster approach, or that the SNP will not cooperate or participate with the UK Government in handling this crisis, or that the Westminster handling of the pandemic makes it clear that if we were independent we would more successful in dealing with the crisis.

However, many Scots believe privately that such policies would be the correct ones. I am not sure “rocking the boat”, as Ms Pannell puts it, would bring independence any closer.

We are presently in a pandemic never seen in a hundred years, the people of Scotland see politics and political point-scoring as the least of their concerns in the life-and-death situation in which we find ourselves at this time. The one priority people wish to see is a Scottish Government and its leadership doing all they can, during this crisis, to protect their health and welfare and that of their families.

READ MORE: Scottish Government more trusted than UK to tackle coronavirus

Quite clearly, as the latest polls suggest, they are succeeding. Throughout the UK 70% believe the Scottish Government are doing a good job; only 54% thought the UK was performing well. Instead of cynicism towards “doing a good day job”, the competence being shown by the FM and her team is a vote winner and will no doubt make independence ever more likely.

The strategy for the moment is to let the Tories and Unionists both in Scotland and England “do our job for us”. Their clear incompetence, ineptness, mixed messaging and lack of strategic direction ensure that the Scottish voting public see that the only way forward is independence for our country.

The Tory-supporting press and media with their attacks on the FM, their massive negative headlines, false news aided by Mundell, Carlaw and Jack et al, indicate desperation and them losing the battle.

It’s not time for the SNP to start aggressive independence campaigning and thereby alienating the Scottish public. It’s not just SNP membership and supporters we have to keep on side, it’s about attracting a further 10%-15% of the voting public.

Also remember the SNP membership and the faithful are keeping their heads down during this lockdown.

The “safe pair of hands” approach by our FM and senior advisors during this pandemic has already delivered a poll indicating the SNP to achieve an outright majority (68 seats) in the 2021 Holyrood election. Our Scottish electorate are astute enough to understand and see how and by whom our country should be run.

Bide your time, do not be overcome by frustration, be critical of pundits. The time for the real battle for independence is after the coronavirus battle has been won.

Dan Wood