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by Jenni Davidson
18 May 2021
Nicola Sturgeon re-elected as first minister of Scotland

Nicola Sturgeon - Image credit: Fraser Bremner/Scottish Daily Mail/PA Wire/PA Images

Nicola Sturgeon re-elected as first minister of Scotland

Nicola Sturgeon has been re-elected as first minister of Scotland again following a vote by MSPs.

Scottish Conservative leader Douglas Ross and Scottish Liberal Democrat leader Willie Rennie also put themselves forward for the post.

Sturgeon gained 64 votes, Ross 31 and Rennie four, with 28 abstentions.

Ross had admitted that there was as much chance of him being chosen as one of his cows jumping over the moon, but said that although he didn’t expect to be first minister at the end of the day, he hoped by the end of the parliament they would be able to look back on the session with pride.

In her speech Sturgeon mocked her competitors, joking about Ross’s “heroic if slightly belated change of heart”, given that he hadn’t pitched himself as a potential first minister after the election campaign.

Regarding Rennie putting himself forward, she quipped “fair play for the self-confidence”, noting that he had led his party from five seats to just four in the election.

On her own bid to be first minister, Sturgeon said: “I bring with me with me a mandate from the voters in the election.”

She said that recovery from the pandemic would be her “first and driving priority”.

Sturgeon also mentioned the COP26 climate summit in Glasgow in November, which she called a “crucial” event.

She noted that countries around the world would be reimagining what they want to be and “here in Scotland we must do so too”.

On independence, Sturgeon said that everyone in Scotland deserved an equal say and Scotland’s future must be Scotland’s choice.

She concluded by saying that being first minster was an “immense privilege” but also an “enormous duty” and she was looking forward to leading the country to “brighter and better times”.

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