Lots of Bluster, but still no answers

"Lots of bluster, but still no answers" was the retort of Peter Peacock, Labour MSP for the Highlands and Islands to the SNP following a challenge to a public debate from Angus Robertson in last week’s Northern Scot.

Peter Peacock said, "The SNP seem to want to debate every defence issue except the one that affects Moray - the future of our air bases.

"I have been asking the same questions of Richard Lochhead now for weeks and weeks and there is a resounding silence from him.

"He even has to get his big pal Angus Robertson to speak for him and Angus has also failed to answer the questions.

"The questions I have asked are really quite simple and are vital to Moray’s economic future – how many Nimrods and fighters will be based at Kinloss and Lossiemouth if Scotland becomes independent and the English, Welsh and Northern Irish air force get their share of the planes back?

"How many people will it take to service the substantially reduced fleet of planes compared to today?

"What will be the effect on house prices if people have to move south in large numbers to follow their jobs?

"These aren’t questions that only I am asking, the local trades unions are asking them too on behalf of the workers at the air bases.

"If the SNP have thought out their policy it shouldn’t be difficult to answer, so I have written to Richard Lochhead yet again to see if I can get an answer.

"If I ever do, the people of Moray will be able to see the detail and have an informed discussion.

"Without the answers, we can’t scrutinise them and hold them properly to account or debate the issues.

"So, I challenge Richard Lochhead, yet again, answer the questions you have been asked as part of your so called "national conversation" about Scotland’s constitution, so I can let the people of Moray consider a future with smaller air bases, fewer local jobs and falling house prices."


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