Labour renews calls for Kenny MacAskill to resign

Kenny MacAskill. Picture: Scott Taylor
Kenny MacAskill. Picture: Scott Taylor
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Labour is to renew calls for Justice Secretary Kenny MacAskill to resign during a Holyrood debate on policing this week.

Mr MacAskill has come under fire after a string of controversial issues relating to Police Scotland, including the stop-and-search of children and armed police on routine patrols.

Labour MSP Graeme Pearson, a former senior police officer, has lodged a motion claiming that Mr MacAskill has “failed to provide effective governance” of the force in delivering public accountability.

The motion, which calls for Mr MacAskill to step down, will be debated by MSPs at Holyrood during Labour Party business tomorrow.

Mr Pearson, Labour’s shadow justice secretary, said: “Kenny MacAskill has stumbled from crisis to crisis as Justice Secretary and is becoming a serious embarrassment for this Government. There has been fundamental policy decisions taken on arming of police on routine duties, stop-and-searches and target-setting without proper debate and consultation.

“Rather than waiting for the inevitable reshuffle from Nicola Sturgeon, the Cabinet Secretary should do the honourable thing and resign.”

Mr MacAskill was again in the spotlight over the weekend for comments comparing efforts to recoup poll tax arrears from independence referendum voters to efforts to disenfranchise black people after the US civil war.