SNP appoints first ever woman as party chair

Kirsten Oswald. Picture: SNP
Kirsten Oswald. Picture: SNP
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The SNP has appointed a woman to chair the party for the first time.

Former MP Kirsten Oswald takes on the business convener role, succeeding Derek Mackay MSP, after being nominated by Nicola Sturgeon.

She will now be responsible for overseeing operational party matters and chairing the National Executive Committee and National Conference.

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Ms Oswald said: “I am thrilled and honoured to be appointed business convener for the SNP at this crucial point in Scottish and UK politics.

“With the UK Tory government hellbent on dragging our country off a job-destroying Brexit cliff edge it is more vital than ever that Scotland’s voice is heard.

“To make that voice louder and more powerful it is vital that all of our members have every opportunity to have their say - and that enhanced member power will be my priority.

“The SNP’s vision of hope and ambition - and our actions in government making Scotland fairer and ready to join Europe’s successful small, independent countries - is in stark contrast to the inward-looking doom, despair and chaos of Westminster.”

Bruce Crawford and Angus Robertson have previously held the position, which was created in 2004.

Finance Secretary Mr Mackay was in the role for the last seven years.

He said: “The past seven years has been an incredible period of growth for the SNP. It has also been the most dynamic period in modern Scottish political history.

“We have won the last three Scottish parliamentary elections, won the previous two Westminster elections in Scotland and delivered an independence referendum which was the biggest democratic event in our nation’s history.

“These achievements, along with the fact that we consistently hold a double-digit leads in polls, show that we are undoubtedly the most successful party in the UK - and arguably the most successful political party in Europe.”