Daily Political Newspaper Summary: 2 May 2013
All newspaper references refer to Scottish editions. Where there is a link to a newspaper’s website, the relevant page reference is highlighted and underlined. In addition to the newspaper stories outlined below, further news coverage can be found online at BBC News Scotland, STV News and Sky News.
Goodwin Case: A dispute has broken out between Lord Advocate Frank Mulholland and business secretary Vince Cable over the potential prosecution of Fred Goodwin and other former directors of RBS over the bank’s disastrous 2008 collapse. Mr Mulholland reportedly warned Vince Cable against appearing to seek influence over the process. (Herald Page 2, Scotsman Page 14, Telegraph Page 8, Express Page, Sun Page 2)
Financial Watchdog: Finance Secretary John Swinney has stated that a new independent financial watchdog will be created in Scotland, an equivalent to the Office for Budget Responsibility. This will be running in 2015. (Herald Page 6, Scotsman Page 6, Telegraph Page 4)
Independent Scotland: William Hague, the Foreign Secretary, has insisted that the Scottish Government must present the facts about what an independent Scotland would mean. (Herald Page 6, Telegraph Page 4, P&J Page 11)
Energy Companies: Scottish Power and SSE are to be investigated by watchdog Ofgem for failing to meet targets aimed at improving energy efficiency in the homes of vulnerable customers. (Scotsman Page 12)
Pollution Fine: Judges at the Supreme Court ruled that the UK government has failed in its duty to protect people from pollution. The European air-quality standards in Glasgow and in other areas have been breached and ministers could face immediate action. (Scotsman Page 17, Guardian Page 11)
First Minister of Wales: Carwyn Jones has reportedly pleaded with the Chancellor not to risk his country’s economy by allowing an independent Scotland to share the pound. (Telegraph Page 4)
SNP and SAWA: Alex Salmond and the SNP have been criticised after they reportedly spent £16,000 of public money on the launch of the Scottish Asian Women’s Association. The chairwoman of the SAWA is a member of the advisory board of the Yes campaign. (Herald Page 6)
Unison: Scotland’s largest trade union, Unison, have launched an attack on the Scottish Government’s council tax freeze. They claim that the policy has been unfair to poorer households. (Herald Page 6, Scotsman Page 16)
Scot’s Underemployed: The National Institute of Economic and Social Research released findings claiming that one in ten people in Scotland are underemployed, twice as many as five years ago. (Herald Page 3)
Scottish Currency: Dame DeAnne Julius, a leading economist, has urged the Scottish Government to create a new currency if the country votes to leave the UK next year. She states that it would give Scotland greater control over economic policies. (Herald Page 6, Express Page 4) Iain Macwhirter from the Herald has criticised George Osborne for his suggestions that Scotland could lose the pound sterling. He questions Scotland’s need for the pound.
Bank privatisations: George Osborne is reportedly preparing for a reprivatisation of The Royal Bank of Scotland and Lloyds Banking Group before the next election. (Financial Times Page 1)
Struggling Charities: Charities fear the effect of the welfare reforms and will struggle to help those families affected due to lack of funding. The Scottish Council for Voluntary Organisations is calling for more help from the Scottish Government. (Herald Page 8)
Patients Die: Three Scottish patients have died after contracting a new strain of the hospital bug Clostridium difficile, the first cases of their kind in the world. All three were treated in the same health board area. (Herald Page 3, Scotsman Page 3)
Measles Cases: GPs have reported that the number of measles cases spotted in Scotland has doubled in a week. However, experts do not expect an outbreak on the same scale as the one in Wales. (Herald Page 7)