Sturgeon re-elected as First Minister of Scotland at Holyrood

Nicola Sturgeon
Nicola Sturgeon (PA Wire)
15:10pm, Tue 18 May 2021
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Nicola Sturgeon has been re-elected as the First Minister of Scotland by a majority of MSPs at Holyrood.

The SNP leader said she wants to lead the country “to brighter and better times” and said recovery from the coronavirus pandemic was her “driving priority”.

Ms Sturgeon defeated both Scottish Conservative leader Douglas Ross and Scottish Liberal Democrat leader Willie Rennie, who each put themselves forward as candidates.

She won 64 votes, ahead of Mr Ross on 31, four for Willie Rennie and 28 MSPs abstained.

I am ready - with the confidence of parliament, I hope - to get on with the job of leading this country to brighter and to better times

In her pitch to MSPs ahead of voting, Ms Sturgeon said: “I am asking MSPs today to support my nomination as First Minister and I bring with me a mandate from the voters in the election.

“This past year has been the most challenging that we have ever experienced.

“During the election campaign, I said that my overriding duty was to do everything possible to keep our country safe and, if nominated today, that will indeed be my first and my driving priority – to lead us through this pandemic, and to lead us into recovery.”

She added: “In government, I have sought over this past year to work across the chamber throughout the Covid crisis.

“If re-nominated today, I will continue to do so as we do implement a programme to kickstart recovery.

“That will be a programme with the NHS, the economy and jobs at its heart, and we will take an inclusive approach to the debate that all countries must have about how we can build the best possible post-pandemic future.

“And, in that endeavour, everyone in Scotland deserves to have an equal say; Scotland’s future must be Scotland’s choice.

“It is in that spirit of inclusiveness, and with a determination to work for all Scotland each and every single day, that I am seeking the nomination of this parliament as Scotland’s First Minister.

“Serving as the country’s First Minister is an immense privilege, but it is also an enormous responsibility and an enormous duty.

“I am ready – with the confidence of parliament, I hope – to get on with the job of leading this country to brighter and to better times.”

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