September 19, 2014

Scotland said No

Scotland voted against the independence for a margin of a 10%. According to the last results, 55% of the voters said no to Independence and 45% said yes.

Alex Salmond, the Scottish National Party Leader, conceded the defeat.

“I accept that verdict of the people and I call on all of Scotland to follow suit in accepting the democratic verdict of the people of Scotland.”, he said

He pledged to work constructively in the interests of Scotland and the rest of the United Kingdom. But he also demanded to London that comply now with the promises of a wider powers of government for Scotland made before the Referendum.

British Prime Minister David Cameron said in a statement that the promises will be kept. but there will be wider powers not only for Scotland but also for Wales, Northern Ireland and England. He said that:

To those in Scotland sceptical of the constitutional promises made, let me say this: we have delivered on devolution under this Government, and we will do so again in the next Parliament.

The three pro-union parties have made commitments on further powers for the Scottish Parliament.

We will ensure that they are honoured.

And I can announce today that Lord Smith of Kelvin – who so successfully led Glasgow’s Commonwealth Games – has agreed to oversee the process to take forward the devolution commitments, with powers over tax, spending and welfare all agreed by November and draft legislation published by January.

Just as the people of Scotland will have more power over their affairs, so it follows that the people of England, Wales and Northern Ireland must have a bigger say over theirs.

The rights of these voters need to be respected, preserved and enhanced as well.

It is absolutely right that a new and fair settlement for Scotland should be accompanied by a new and fair settlement that applies to all parts of the United Kingdom.

About the results of the Referendum he said he is “delighted”.

As I said during the campaign, it would have broken my heart to see our United Kingdom come to an end.

He remembered why the Referendum took place

Let us first remember why we had this debate – and why it was right to do so.

The Scottish National Party was elected in 2011 in Scotland and promised a referendum on independence.

We could have blocked that, we could have put it off – but just as with other issues, it was right to take – not duck – the big decision.

I am a passionate believer in our United Kingdom – I wanted more than anything for our United Kingdom to stay together.

But I am also a democrat. And it was right that we respected the SNP’s majority in Holyrood and gave the Scottish people the right to have their say.

Let us also remember why it was right to ask the definitive question, Yes or No.

Because now the debate has been settled for a generation – or as Alex Salmond has said, perhaps for a lifetime.

So there can be no disputes, no re-runs – we have heard the settled will of the Scottish people.

Just a day after the Scottish referendum, in Spain, the Catalonian parliament has been convened to pass a law to call their own referendum for the secession, probably  in Novembrer 9. The problem here is that the situation of Catalonia in Spain  is quite different than the situation of Scotland in the United Kingdom. Besides, the Spanish Constitution doesn’t contemplate a regional or autonomic referendum, but only a National referendum, with the participation of all the Spaniards, so the consult would be ruled unconstitutional and thus illegal. It’s not clear what will the Catalonian Government do. They have said that if the Referendum is ruled illegal the president Artur Mas will call early elections with the possibility of a electoral win of the more radicals separatists of ERC who would organize the vote illegaly at all costs.

Join the conversation! 3 Comments

  1. I can’t agree with “So there can be no disputes, no re-runs – we have heard the settled will of the Scottish people.” The whole point of democracy is that one can change one’s mind. There is nothing that is “settled” in a democracy.

  2. P.S. And how could a mere 55% majority be considered “settled?”

  3. The question will rise again in the future I don’t know exactly when. For now the society is highly divided, as the results show. I don’t know if the offer of more powers for the scottish government will satisfy the insdependentists. I doubt it.

Comments are closed.

About Olga Brajnović

Journalist. In my fifties. I've worked for 26 years in a newspaper in Spain. I worked for two years as a stringer and correspondent in the US, and went as a special envoy to other places like the Balkans. Sea lover. Avid reader. Classic Music enthusiast.

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Europe, World and Politics

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