Today news broke that Tory MSP Miles Briggs is facing sexual misconduct allegations. According to Tom Gordon at the Herald he “is alleged to have made persistent unwanted advances at a parliamentary social event”.
Now I came across this story by accident because it isn’t really making the headline news all that much, I am not surprised by this at all because it’s just different if it’s an Alex Salmond story as we all know. Any sexual misconduct allegations are serious and should be treated the same to ensure that all parties get a fair and impartial hearing, that the truth comes out, and that the issue is investigated in line with the seriousness of the allegations, and you would expect the media in Scotland to do the same, but do they? The headlines do just tend to be different don’t they, some are front page news and some, just aren’t.
Back in August the Telegraph demanded that Nicola Sturgeon has been warned it would be “completely unacceptable” to keep “hidden” from the public the nature of her discussions with Alex Salmond after he was accused of sexual misconduct. Opposition parties demanded “full transparency” and called on the First Minister to reveal what was said in three meetings with her predecessor after two female civil servants accused him of harassment. It was reported at the time that Tory equalities spokeswoman Annie Wells has written to Scottish Government Permanent Secretary Leslie Evans seeking to clarify whether complaints had been raised against Mr Salmond before January. She said: “I believe we need to know whether these allegations were ever brought to the attention of the Scottish Government prior to January 2018. “There is a clear public interest in getting a definitive answer as to whether any complaints against the former first minister were made in this period and whether any Scottish Government officials or ministers were informed about them.
I wonder what Annie Wells is saying today, obviously there is a clear public interest here regarding Miles Briggs, but it just isn’t Alex Salmond is it, because all the Tories are saying today is that “Until that process concludes, the party cannot comment”. Rhoda Grant of Labour at the time said “that the people of Scotland expect full transparency over this most serious of matters, but the SNP government has so far not been forthcoming”. I can’t seem to find any comment from the Scottish Labour Conservative Party on this disclosure today at all, anywhere. I was also wondering if Tom Gordon will run with the story for days like he did the Alex Salmond one, will we see headlines like
Tom Gordon: Wave of support for Salmond inside SNP could make life hell for Sturgeon
SNP on brink of civil war over Salmond sex claims