Boxer Alex Arthur to stand for Alba Party
Former boxer Alex Arthur is to stand for the Alba Party in May’s election.
The former Commonwealth Games gold medalist and WBO Champion will be placed on the party’s Lothian list, alongside former SNP MP Kenny Macaskill.
Arthur is the latest candidate to be announced for the party launched by former first minister Alex Salmond last week.
He said: “Standing on the podium in front of a Scottish Saltire was one of the proudest moments of my life. If a super featherweight world champion can help deliver a supermajority, I can’t sit on the sidelines.”
Arthur retired from professional boxing in 2013, with a record of 31 wins to three losses. He received in MBE in 2012 for his services to the sport.
He has previously been critical of the Scottish Government’s approach to restrictions on sport during the pandemic.
In a tweet in February, he said: “It’s bordering on ridiculous now being led by a government of scientifically illiterate tyrants waging a war on health and sport it seems! EVERYWHERE in the world are continuing with sport & health!”
And he has also come under fire for posts on social media in which he ridiculed "Romanian beggars", who he described as "over fed pigs".
Arthur has since apologised for the comments, though he said they were being "misinterpreted" and the issue "could have been avoided if I'd thought more about my words".
He said: "I apologise for any unintended offence, but I do not want to distract from my central cause which is all of the people who live in Scotland... Now that I am trying to be a politician, I will not hold my tongue, but I will mind it."
Elsewhere, the Independence for Scotland Party has announced it will no longer field candidates in the election following the launch of Alba.
The party’s executive body confirmed members had voted to put aside its manifesto as there was now “one unifying voice to get independence delivered”.
A statement said: “We are not standing aside to be failed by others again but hope that our member’s trust will be rewarded. This has not been an easy decision and we would like to thank all our members.”
The Action for Independence party announced it would back Alba last week.