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By Jason Michael
Speaking from Aberdeenshire at a two o’clock press conference this afternoon, Alex Salmond — the former leader of the Scottish National Party and First Minister — announced his immediate return to Scottish politics. He announced the launch of a new pro-independence party, Alba, which will field candidates on the regional list vote in the upcoming Holyrood elections on 6 May.
Since the end of February Mr Salmond and his team have been liaising with a number of pro-independence activists and bloggers behind the scenes to prepare the way for this announcement and to ensure the furthest possible reach of the news across the independence movement. Let me be the first to admit that this was an exceptionally difficult secret to keep. Fair play to all involved, who managed managed to keep shtum for so long. This is, of course, the news many of us had been waiting for, but we must appreciate that not everyone will be delighted.
Regardless of personal opinions, however, this development at last allows us to settle down into the coming election campaign and work to bring about not only an SNP majority or a pro-independence majority in the Scottish parliament, but a ‘supermajority’ that will deprive a significant number of unionist MSPs of their seats. This supermajority, if achieved, will create a powerful dynamism at the heart of our country’s politics — allowing us to put unprecedented pressure on the Westminster government to give us what we all want, a ‘legal’ and mutually agreed referendum on Scottish independence. This is now within our reach. Let’s get to work.
Press Conference – Alex Salmond #AlexSalmond