Photo: supporters of Soviet independence rally outside the Scottish Parliament in February 2020. /Agence France Presse
[Ta Kung Pao] according to BBC, guardian and Sky News, the chief minister of Scotland and the leader of SNP said on the 23rd that if the party wins the parliamentary election in May, it will launch an independent referendum again, whether London agrees or not. She made a mockery of British Prime Minister Johnson’s fear of democracy;. Johnson had earlier asserted that Scotland would not be allowed to vote again. In addition, former British Prime Minister Gordon white issued a document, pointing out that many people have lost confidence in London centered elitist governance. Without reform, Britain may quickly become a “failed country”;.
When Scotland held its first independence referendum in 2014, 55% of voters supported staying in the UK. However, brexit was contrary to the wishes of most Scots to stay in Europe, which made the Soviet independence force gradually grow. During the period of COVID-19, Scotland people generally believed that Shi Ya Ching’s response to the new crown crisis was more appropriate than that of prime minister Johnson, which strengthened the determination of the independent faction.
On the 23rd local time, the SNP put forward the “road map for independence referendum” and laid down 11 guidelines. If the party wins a majority of seats in the Scotland parliamentary elections in May, it will submit a bill to the parliament, demanding that the referendum be held after the end of COVID-19. Once the bill is passed, the Scottish authorities will ask 10 Downing Street to give the Scottish government the power to hold a second independent referendum in accordance with Chapter 30 of the Scotland Act 1998. If the Johnson administration insists on opposing this “legal referendum”, it will leave it to the law to decide whether Scotland has the legal basis to hold an independent referendum.
More than half of Scots support independence
According to a panel base poll released by the Sunday Times on the 24th, 49% of Scots support independence and 44% oppose it. If uncertainties are excluded, the proportion of people who support independence is 52% to 48%, much higher than seven years ago. The poll asked voters in England, Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland, all expecting Scotland to become independent within 10 years.
Johnson said earlier this month that SNP previously described the 2014 independence referendum as an event of “only once in a generation”, that is, 40 years apart, and now it can’t insist on another one. SNP retorts that the situation has changed because of brexit. EU membership was the key factor in persuading Scots to stay in the UK seven years ago. However, Scots were forced to leave the EU after their wishes were violated.
Shi Yaqing said in an interview with the BBC on the 24th that Johnson was “afraid of democracy.”;. She said that if the SNP wins the parliamentary election in May, it means that the people give the party the power to promote independence, and no Democrat has any reason to stand in the way;.
However, the Scottish opposition party believes that Shi Yaqing should now focus on fighting the epidemic and revitalizing the economy, rather than planning for independence. Jackie Baillie, the interim chairman of the Scottish Labor Party, attacked SNP as “inexcusable” in trying to put its independence above everything else in an emergency crisis;.
Britain or a failed country
In addition to the rising call for Soviet independence, the internal division crisis in Britain has been rising one after another, and the number of people supporting the reunification of Ireland has been increasing since brexit. According to the panel base poll, 51% of northern Irishmen are in favor of holding a referendum on Northern Ireland’s independence in the next five years. As for the question of whether to unify Northern Ireland and Ireland, 42% of the respondents support it, 47% oppose it, and 11% are uncertain.
In an article in the daily telegraph, former British Prime Minister Gordon Brown warned that without fundamental reform, Britain could quickly become a “failed country” because many people lost confidence in the London centered Elite Governance. He pointed out that the new coronavirus has exposed the differences between different regions in the UK. Apart from Scotland, many local leaders also complained about the lack of communication with the Johnson administration. The chief minister of Wales even said that John did not reply to his letters and that there was no mechanism and no coordination platform between countries and regions. I think the public has had enough of it. &But Johnson didn’t realize the seriousness.
He called on Britain to carry out fundamental constitutional reform and review the way of governance under the leadership of the Democratic Council. He suggested that the establishment of citizen’s congresses in various regions of the UK should not only allow elites to talk with elites, but also allow the public to participate in the discussion and express their views on how to deal with the epidemic and economic recession.