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Scottish Secretary urges new consensus

Mundell: ‘let’s stop the bickering and work together’

David MundellScottish Secretary David Mundell will today call for a new consensus among politicians “for the benefit of the people”.

In his first keynote speech since the election he will call on the UK and Holyrood governments to work together and to stop bickering and blaming each other when things go wrong.

In his speech entitled New Parliament, New Powers, New Partnership: Working together for Scotland Mr Mundell will focus on resetting the relationship between the two governments, ahead of significant new powers transferring to the Scottish Parliament.

Mr Mundell will say: “People in Scotland have a right to expect, and Scotland’s two governments a duty to deliver, a relationship between Holyrood and Westminster which puts the national interest first and political considerations last.

“Frankly, people are sick and tired of the bickering and blame games. They want to see their politicians working together for the common good.

 “So I want to make a big offer to the incoming Scottish Ministers: let’s reset the relationship between our two governments. Let’s put our political disagreements aside where we possibly can, and put our energies and talents together to deliver a better future for Scotland.

“And let’s include everyone in Scotland businesses, charities, churches, trade unions, universities, private citizens in a new collective effort to use our powers and potential in this common endeavour.”

The speech comes ahead of a raft of powers coming into force on 23 May, which will mean the Scottish Parliament will be able to legislate in a range of new areas.

These will include measures on equal opportunities, gambling policy, rail franchising and the ability to set speed limits on Scotland’s roads.

Significant powers on tax and welfare will transfer later, as agreed by both governments.

Derek Mackay, the Scottish Transport secretary said the SNP was ready to work with others, but Mr Mundell’s comments “doesn’t sound like much of an offer.”

He said: “We will work constructively where there is common ground.

“We don’t want to bicker.. but the SNP has a mandate for government.”

> As I See It: Terry Murden says Mr Mundell is being unrealistic 

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