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Election / Election round-up 5 May 2021

DURING recent weeks, Shetland’s two members of the Scottish Youth Parliament have conducted video interviews with five of the six constituency candidates to explore their views and policies on topics close to the hearts of young people.

The interviews, conducted by Leighton Anderson and Jonathan Dorrat, can be watched on the Shetland MSYPs Facebook page. They are listed here in alphabetical order:

he MSYPs said they did not speak to independent candidate Peter Tait as his policy around same-sex marriage goes against what the rights-based Scottish Youth Parliament works towards.

LABOUR candidate for the Shetland seat Martin Kerr has again emphasised that only a vote for him and his party would secure a fair recovery for all from the Covid-19 pandemic.

“The recovery from Covid should be the only priority. People’s jobs, their health and our kids’ education. Use your peach ballot paper to vote for the Labour Party on the list vote to secure a fair recovery for all,” he said.

Scottish Labour is calling for people to use both their votes for Labour, particularly on the second, peach ballot paper, to deliver a national recovery that works for all of Scotland.

Newly elected party leader Anas Sarwar said: “The people of Scotland face a stark choice at this election – either we go back to the old arguments about a referendum with the SNP and the Tories, or we forge ahead with our national recovery with Labour.

“In this moment of national crisis, we must pull together – not go back to fighting among ourselves.

LIBERAL Democrat candidate Beatrice Wishart says if re-elected she will be “Shetland’s voice in Holyrood – not a party voice in Shetland”.

“Instead of more years of constitutional wrangling, we can concentrate on action on climate change, improving our mental health services and education system, improving transport and broadband connectivity, and challenge centralisation, all with a needle-sharp focus on recovery from the COVID-19 pandemic,” she said in closing remarks before polling day.

SNP candidate Tom Wills says if he is elected he will press for more local control of local waters for fishermen, for a ban on gill netters and for more of the fish caught around Shetland to be landed into local markets.

He said “the question for Shetland this Thursday is whether our interests are best served by having an MSP from a party as small and rudderless as the Lib Dems, or by having a Shetland representative inside the party of government”.

Wills added that he is not convinced that the current situation with fishing is much better than it was pre-Brexit, “and I am not convinced that on balance, it will get much better in a Brexit Britain led by perpetual Tory governments”.

His blog can be read at https://tomwills4shetland.org/toms_blog/fishing-blog-2/

THE SHETLAND Elects Twitter account – run by local political history PhD student Mathew Nicolson – has projected that the Liberal Democrats will win the Shetland seat again.

He predicts that Beatrice Wishart could land 47.3 per cent of the vote, with Wills receiving 40.6 per cent.

Nicolson also predicts Labour will come third, followed by the Conservatives.

The Scottish Parliament elections take place on 6 May. There are six candidates contesting the Shetland seat. They are in alphabetical order: Martin Kerr (Labour), Brian Nugent (Restore Scotland); Peter Tait (Independent), Nick Tulloch (Conservatives), Tom Wills (SNP) and Beatrice Wishart (Liberal Democrats).

To find out more about all the candidates standing in the election, including those on the regional Highlands and Islands list, visit our Scottish Parliament election 2021 page below.