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Nicola Sturgeon called to give evidence to Holyrood Salmond inquiry


Nicola Sturgeon called to give evidence to Holyrood Salmond inquiry

Nicola Sturgeon has been called to give written evidence to the Scottish Parliament inquiry into the Scottish Government’s handling of harassment complaints against former first minister Alex Salmond.

Deputy First Minister John Swinney has also been called, as well as the First Minister’s chief of staff, Liz Lloyd, and her husband, Peter Murrell, who is chief executive of the SNP.

Salmond and his former chief of staff, Geoff Aberdein, will also give evidence, as will the Lord Advocate and both the current and former permanent secretaries.

The call for written evidence also includes staff trade unions and a number of senior civil servants.

An inquiry into the handling of complaints was announced in 2019 after the Scottish Government conceded that an internal investigation of sexual misconduct complaints against Salmond had been conducted in an unlawful manner.

However, it was postponed due to the criminal trial against Salmond, in which he was acquitted in March.

The committee carrying out the investigation met for the first time today to agree the general approach to its inquiry and to set out an initial list of witnesses.

The panel of nine MSPs from across all parties agreed to meet weekly from August. It plans to conduct its inquiry in a chronological fashion, attempting to understand how the complaints were processed.

It is expected that a number of those asked for written evidence will also be called to appear before the committee to give oral evidence as the inquiry progresses.

Permanent secretary to the Scottish Government Leslie Evans will be the first to give such evidence.

A Scottish Parliament spokesperson said: “At its meeting today, the committee agreed to invite the permanent secretary to give evidence to the committee in mid-August.

“The committee also agreed a list of potential witnesses to invite written evidence from at this stage. This list will be published shortly.

“Over the summer the committee will be gathering evidence as it begins its inquiry. Letters inviting written evidence will be published when they are issued and submissions to the inquiry will be made available on the Parliament’s website.”

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