Nicola Sturgeon to elect unopposed as SNP leader

Deputy First Minister Nicola Sturgeon

Deputy First Minister Nicola Sturgeon

Scotland’s Deputy First Minister Nicola Sturgeon is likely to be elected unopposed as the new Scottish National Party (SNP) on Wednesday.

Ms Sturgeon will come to replace Alex Salmond, who had been leader of the SNP party for the past 2 decades and announced his resignation in coming November after Scotland rejected to opt for independence at September 18 vote.

The 44-year-old was the only person to have put her name forward as a candidate by Wednesday morning’s deadline. She will also assume her new position of Scotland’s first ever female first minister from next month, pending the approval of parliament.

The current deputy first minister, who was supporting the Scottish independence ‘Yes’ campaign in the wake of referendum, has still insisted to see an independent Scotland but, for now, has other priorities.

SNP National Secretary Patrick Grady has told that Scottish Government Minister for Transport and Veterans, Keith Brown; the Scottish Government Cabinet Secretary for Training, Youth & Women’s Employment, Angela Constance; and Deputy Leader of the SNP Westminster Group and party Treasury spokesperson Stewart Hosie are the three nominees to replace Ms Sturgeon as Deputy First Minister.

SNP Business Convener Derek Mackay has expressed his delight that Sturgeon will succeed Mr Salmond as leader of the SNP.

Mr Mackay has said: “She will be a fantastic new leader of both the party and our country. She will build on the substantial legacy and extraordinary achievements of Alex Salmond as the longest serving First Minister, and make her own mark as she leads Scotland forward.

“I am also delighted that there is a choice of three top quality candidates for the post of deputy leader.

“Where there was deep disappointment at not winning the referendum, there is now a real focus on ensuring that Westminster delivers on its Vow to deliver extensive new powers for Scotland, so that we can build a fairer and more prosperous country.

“We can look forward with great optimism to our new leadership team taking forward this work in the best interests of Scotland.”

Ms Sturgeon will be confirmed as leader at the SNP conference in November. Afterwards, she will also be confirmed as first minister by the Scottish Parliament.

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