Home   News   National   Article

Robertson defends SNP selection process amid MP’s claims she was ‘ostracised’

PA News

Angus Robertson has defended the SNP’s Westminster selection process after a party MP claimed she was “ostracised” for criticising the handling of sexual harassment allegations against Patrick Grady.

The Scottish Constitution Secretary – and former party leader at Westminster – said his party was transparent about the process which allows new candidates to come forward to contest nominations.

It comes as Dr Lisa Cameron, MP for East Kilbride, Strathaven and Lesmahagow, said she had to undergo “quite a lot of counselling” after she suggested the party hierarchy should be offering more support to the alleged victim.

She spoke out against then-Westminster SNP leader Ian Blackford’s call for MPs to offer their “absolute full support” to Mr Grady, according to a leaked recording.

SNP MP Lisa Cameron (Chris McAndrew/UK Parliament)
SNP MP Lisa Cameron (Chris McAndrew/UK Parliament)

Mr Grady was suspended from the party for six months over sexual harassment allegations after being accused of inappropriately touching a party staff member in 2016.

His membership was restored in December 2022.

Dr Cameron has now said the reaction – which she claims saw colleagues refuse to speak to her – had led her to “not rule out” a by-election after a party worker challenged her for the seat at the next election.

However, speaking to the PA news agency during a campaign event at Cuningar Loop in Rutherglen, Mr Robertson said: “As is common with all political parties, the SNP is going through its internal selection for candidates for different seats and some candidates are successful and some are not successful.”

He said he was “proud” the party was being transparent with its selection process, adding “other political parties manage these things behind closed doors in a way that we don’t in the SNP”.

I am content that we have a good democratic procedure in the SNP
Angus Robertson

Mr Robertson said: “If there’s going to be some media chat about the fact that, yes, there are different candidates – and people have different explanations as to why they were selected or not – that, as a former journalist, doesn’t surprise me.

“But I am content that we have a good democratic procedure in the SNP.”

On Friday, Dr Cameron, a former consultant clinical psychologist, said her comments against the party’s approach meant colleagues were “quite hostile”, adding: “I was treated as if I was saying something outlandish. I was made to feel I was out of step with the party. I felt ostracised.”

An SNP spokesperson also said it is common that “a number of sitting SNP MPs will be involved in selection contests”.

Close This site uses cookies. By continuing to browse the site you are agreeing to our use of cookies.Learn More