Scotland's health secretary Michael Matheson quits after racking up £11,000 iPad bill on holiday

8 February 2024, 11:25 | Updated: 8 February 2024, 11:46

Michael Matheson has quit as Scotland's health secretary
Michael Matheson has quit as Scotland's health secretary. Picture: Alamy

By Asher McShane

Michael Matheson has quit as Scotland's health secretary in the wake of the scandal over iPad data roaming charges.

Listen to this article

Loading audio...

He racked up an £11,000 bill on his parliamentary iPad while on holiday.

In his resignation letter he said: "It is in the best interest of myself and the government for me to now step down to ensure this does not become a distraction to taking forward the government's agenda."

Mr Matheson had been under fire since November last year when details of an £11,000 bill on his Holyrood-issued iPad were made public.

In an emotional statement to MSPs, he revealed his teenage sons had been using the device as a hotspot so they could watch football while on a family holiday to Morocco.

The then health secretary, however, had originally insisted the charges had been run up while he was using it for constituency work during the break.

When he learned of his children's use of the device, Mr Matheson paid back the charges, which had originally been picked up by the Scottish Parliament.

With the Scottish Parliament Corporate Body conducting an investigation, Mr Matheson said he was "conscious that this process will conclude in the coming weeks".

Mr Matheson had taken over the post of health secretary last March after Mr Yousaf became Scotland's First Minister.

As well as the row over his iPad data charges, he has also come under ongoing pressure over NHS waiting times .

In his letter to the First Minister, Mr Matheson said he was "enormously grateful" to have been given the job as he thanked Mr Yousaf "for the support you have given me throughout the last year".

Mr Matheson told the First Minister that this "has meant a great deal to both me and my family".

More Latest News

See more More Latest News

Exclusive
Jennifer Kowalski and Cole Macdonald

Revealed: Eco-activists who targeted Taylor Swift's jet unmasked as ex-civil servant and Palestine protester

Jay Slater's family have warned people about donating to fake pages

Jay Slater, missing Brit in Tenerife, 'rang friend to cut his leg on cactus' and 'didn't know where he was'

Sir Ian McKellen is recuperating following a fall from the stage

Sir Ian McKellen to miss remainder of Player Kings’ London dates following fall

The Bank of England has given its latest updates on interest rates.

Blow for borrowers as Bank of England holds interest rates again at 5.25%

Two protesters bailed after Stonehenge sprayed with orange paint

Two eco-activists bailed after Stonehenge sprayed with orange paint as bosses say 'no visible damage' to monument

German police

'Isis terrorist sleeper agent' arrested in Germany near Euro 2024 host city

The court ruling could threaten the future of oil and gas projects.

Future of new oil and gas projects in UK thrown into doubt after landmark Supreme Court ruling

Exclusive
Arthur Pendragon has condemned the attack on Stonehenge

'Like targeting a cathedral': Britain's 'top druid' condemns Just Stop Oil's 'completely dismaying' Stonehenge attack

Just Stop Oil targeted Taylor Swift's jet in VIP airfield - but failed to find it

Just Stop Oil activists fail to find Taylor Swift's jet despite targeting it in VIP airfield attack

Laura Saunders, the Conservative candidate for Bristol North West

Tory candidate being investigated over alleged election date bet is 'married to Conservative Director of Campaigns'

Prince Andrew is planning to leave the Royal Lodge to his daughters Princess Beatrice and Eugenie, according to reports.

Prince Andrew ‘plans to leave Royal Lodge home’ to daughters Princess Beatrice and Eugenie ‘after his death’

x

Post Office accidentally publishes the names and addresses of 555 subpostmasters wrongfully convicted in Horizon scandal

Gambling probes into two Tory candidates are a 'betrayal of trust' in Rishi Sunak, Michael Gove has said.

Gove says election bets are ‘betrayal of Prime Minister’s trust’ as second Tory candidate investigated by regulator

Michael Gove said the Conservatives would make it easier to buy housing

Michael Gove defends missed housing targets as he claims getting onto property ladder will be easier under Tories

The actress beamed as she cradled her baby bump on Wednesday evening.

Jenna Coleman reveals she’s pregnant as she debuts baby bump just months after marriage rumours

Two Just Stop Oil activists sprayed private planes at airfield hours 'after Taylor Swifts' jet arrived

Eco-protesters arrested after trying but failing to damage Taylor Swift's plane in VIP airfield stunt