Scotland's First Minister Humza Yousaf faces vote of no confidence after power-sharing deal collapses

25 April 2024, 17:47 | Updated: 26 April 2024, 10:16

Scottish First Minister faces a vote of no confidence after the SNP's power-sharing deal with the Greens collapsed.
Scottish First Minister faces a vote of no confidence after the SNP's power-sharing deal with the Greens collapsed. Picture: Alamy

By Jenny Medlicott

The Scottish Greens will not support First Minister Humza Yousaf in a confidence vote next week after their power-sharing deal with the SNP collapsed, the party has said.

Listen to this article

Loading audio...

Scotland's First Minister Humza Yousaf called an emergency meeting of his Cabinet on Thursday morning amid mounting tensions between the two parties.

Mr Yousaf said the power-sharing deal between the two parties had “served its purpose" and was "no longer guaranteeing a stable arrangement in parliament".

But now the party has said it will support a vote of no confidence in Mr Yousaf, as the party said the “sudden ending” of their deal with the SNP has called into question the “delivery of those objectives” they had agreed to deliver together.

Patrick Harvie said: "Humza Yousaf becoming first minister was on the basis of a political cooperation which both parties members signed in good faith, which Humza Yousaf endorsed and even two days ago was still endorsing.

"He's now chosen to end that. That's his decision and it can't come without consequences."

Will the Alba Party's only MP vote to save Humza Yousaf next week?

He added: "This is about how we achieve the greatest political change for Scotland."

"Humza Yousaf has decided to abandon the vehicle that was delivering that progressive change for Scotland. I think that's a profound mistake."

Following the Greens’ announcement, it means the vote, which could take place as early as next week, will se 64 out of 128 MSPs not backing Mr Yousaf.

The SNP have 63 MSPs at Holyrood while there is also Ash Regan, the only MSP in the Alba Party, who could swing the vote - but she has not yet confirmed which way she will vote.

Speaking to LBC's Tonight with Andrew Marr, former SNP leader Alex Salmond said that Ms Regan will make the decision of which way to vote in the coming days.

Mr Salmond said: “We have Ash Regan, not just any politician but an actual confident female, she will write a letter to Humza over the next day or two, just set out her concerns and based on his reply she’ll decide how to vote.”

Earlier today, Scottish Greens co-leader Lorna Slater MSP accused the SNP of 'selling out future generations'.

She said: “This is an act of political cowardice by the SNP, who are selling out future generations to appease the most reactionary forces in the country.

“Voters deserve better, Scotland deserves better. Scottish Green voters certainly deserve better.

The Scottish Greens have said they will support a vote of no confidence in Humza Yousaf.
The Scottish Greens have said they will support a vote of no confidence in Humza Yousaf. Picture: Alamy

"They have broken the bonds of trust with members of both parties who have twice chosen the co-operation agreement and climate action over chaos, culture wars and division. They have betrayed the electorate.

"And by ending the agreement in such a weak and thoroughly hopeless way, Humza Yousaf has signalled that when it comes to political cooperation, he can no longer be trusted."

James Murray, Labour’s Shadow Economic Secretary to the Treasury told LBC News: "People in Scotland have had the SNP in Government in Scotland and the Conservatives in Government in Westminster for too long and I know when I've been knocking on doors in Scotland myself talking to voters that people feel it's time for change."

The Bute House Agreement - named after the First Minister's official residence in Edinburgh - had brought Greens into power for the first time anywhere in the UK when it was signed in 2021.

Read more: Labour pledges to renationalise railways within five years if elected in 'biggest overhaul in a generation'

Read more: Teacher ‘lucky to be alive’ after three injured in horror playground attack

It gave the SNP a majority at Holyrood, and made Green co-leaders Lorna Slater and Patrick Harvie junior ministers in the Scottish Government.

Now the deal has been ended, the SNP will be forced to operate as a minority administration at Holyrood.

Scottish Greens co-leader Lorna Slater announced the party would be backing a vote of no confidence in the First Minister.
Scottish Greens co-leader Lorna Slater announced the party would be backing a vote of no confidence in the First Minister. Picture: Alamy

The move comes after the Greens were angered when the Scottish Government was last week forced to abandon a key climate change target.

The Greens were also unhappy at the decision to pause the prescription of puberty blockers to new patients at Scotland's only gender services clinic for young people in Glasgow.

Pressure over these issues meant the Greens had planned to hold a party vote on the future of the powersharing deal - but the agreement has ended before that could take place.

High-profile figures in the SNP, such as former leadership candidate Kate Forbes and party stalwart Fergus Ewing, had previously called for the deal - signed when Nicola Sturgeon was first minister - to end.

Mr Yousaf was the only candidate in the SNP leadership contest who supported continuing the deal, and he previously hailed it as being "worth its weight in gold".

But after the Green vote on the future of the deal was announced, Mr Harvie said he "honestly" did not know if his party would back its continuation.

The no confidence motion has been proposed by Scottish Conservative leader Douglas Ross.

With the Greens voting in favour of the no confidence motion, there would be 64 out of 128 MSPs who do not back the First Minister.

The SNP have 63 MSPs at Holyrood while there is also Ash Regan of the Alba Party, who has not yet confirmed which way she will vote.

Any vote is likely to take place next week, with timings to be confirmed by parliamentary authorities.

More Latest News

See more More Latest News

Sir Keir said Jeremy Corbyn would have made a better Prime Minister than Boris Johnson

Jeremy Corbyn would have made a better Prime Minister than Boris Johnson, says Keir Starmer

Ministers should implement the recommendations from my review into political violence and disruption, says Lord Walney.

Eco-vandals make future climate chaos more likely, not less - the next government must reinforce the rule of law

In recent days Just Stop Oil have targeted Taylor Swift's private jet and Stonehenge

Fury at ‘weak’ justice for eco mob as LBC analysis reveals 99.9% of arrested Just Stop Oil protesters avoid jail

Sadiq Khan has hit out at anti-ULEZ campaigners who heckled him

Sadiq Khan defiant against anti-Ulez campaigners as he declares: 'I believe in democracy'

The singer's partner was found dead at their Gloucestershire home.

James Morrison discovered ex-partner Gill Catchpole, 45, dead after friend found note on front door, inquest hears

England draw with Denmark in lacklustre performance as fans - including Prince William - get behind Three Lions

England draw with Denmark in lacklustre performance as millions - including Prince William - get behind Three Lions

Footage has emerged showing Jay Slater hours before he went missing

Missing Jay Slater seen on video at packed Tenerife rave just hours before he vanished as search enters fourth night

Donald Sutherland, actor known for Hunger Games (top) and MASH (bottom), has died aged 88

Donald Sutherland, actor known for Hunger Games and Kelly's Heroes, has died aged 88

England fans celebrate at the BOXPark Wembley

England fans pack out pubs and sneak out of work early to cheer on three lions ahead of crunch Euros clash

When Putin met Kim: Leaders cement alliance with limo drive, concert and pony stroking outing

When Putin met Kim: Leaders cement alliance with limo drive, concert and pony stroking outing

Exclusive
Smash and Wings owner Haroon is unhappy at being threatened to make the change

Family restaurant threatened with legal action by US giant if it doesn't change name to avoid 'copyright breach'

An intruder has been on the roof of Sacred Heart High School for three days.

London girls school closed for three days due to 'our intruder' on roof as police say situation still ongoing

Farah El Kadhi

Influencer Farah El Kadhi dies aged 36 after 'suffering heart attack on yacht holiday in Malta'

Sir Ian McKellen will not re-appear in West End play as veteran actor, 85, gives health update after falling from stage

Sir Ian McKellen will not re-appear in West End play as veteran actor, 85, gives health update after falling from stage

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

Last person to speak to missing Jay Slater claims he has been kidnapped and ‘something sinister is going on’

Travis Scott

Travis Scott arrested for 'disorderly intoxication and trespassing'