Nigel’s Notes - ‘It’s a big opportunity’

On Sunday evening I was a panellist in the Mearns FM referendum debate in Stonehaven Town Hall.

There was a great turnout and some excellent and thoughtful questions were put forward to the panel. I was delighted to share the Yes side with Dr Rachel Shanks who gave clarity in answer to questions over Europe and education.

Rachel’s presence in support of the Yes campaign was doubly encouraging because she is not a member of the SNP, and her views on independence are shaped by her knowledge and expertise in her professional fields of law and education, and her commitment to her family and the opportunities she wants for her children for their future in a fairer and more equal society that only a independent Scotland can offer.

By the time this column is read many folk will already have cast their vote but for those that have not let me remind you that the simple reason to vote Yes for independence is so that Scotland is governed and led by the people of Scotland.

We will always get the government we vote for and our leaders will always be directly accountable to the Scottish people.

And please be very clear, the late offer of more powers by the panicking Westminster parties is of no value. Even if we assume there is good faith behind the individual parties’ promises there is no consensus and no realistic prospect of anything being agreed before the next general election.

Today (Thursday) we have the biggest opportunity any of us will ever have to improve the lives of our families and our communities – a once in a lifetime opportunity to take our own affairs into our own hands and make the decisions that are right for the people of Scotland.

As a last note, by early tomorrow morning (Friday), Scotland will have made its democratic decision.

No matter what that decision is we must all get on and work with it and each other.

I hope that no one will think there is any value in recrimination, triumphalism or simply re-running the campaign. The future is ours. Please let’s pull together.