Nicola Sturgeon has maintained that she is the only politician to offer “serious leadership.” Scotland in Thursday’s pivotal Holyrood poll – despite admitting that her SNP “hadn’t done enough” when it comes to addressing the country’s performance gap.
Ms. Sturgeon had previously insisted that closing the achievement gap between rich and poor children in Scottish schools was her top government priority, and said voters should judge her on this.
As the Scots prepare to vote in the last Holyrood election on May 6, the SNP leader said on the matter, “We haven’t done as much as I want us to do.”
Ms. Sturgeon insisted that progress has been made and pointed to “record numbers” of young people from disadvantaged neighborhoods attending college, but speaking of efforts to close the learning gap, she added: “It’s not where I want that it is. ”
But she promised the SNP would do more to address the “driving force behind the performance gap that is child poverty” if she came to power for what would be a record-breaking fourth reign in Scotland.
She said it was “unacceptable” that nearly a quarter (24%) of children in Scotland live in poverty – but said this was the lowest rate of any nation in the UK, adding that her party had promised it Double Scottish child. Payment made to low-income families brings this to £ 20 per week.
Ms Sturgeon said in BBC Scotland’s The Sunday Show: “We are not saying there are no major challenges in this country, but we are the only party doing the work and putting forward plans to actually do so.
‘And that is the choice people have on Thursday: do you want to vote for parties competing for second place and say openly that they have no plan for the government, or do you want a serious prime minister, and an experienced prime minister, that is? say leading a government that takes the challenges seriously. ”
Ms Sturgeon, who said she would serve the full five-year term if re-elected as prime minister, added: “This country needs serious leadership because it is serious time, and that is what I am offering.
“It looks like I’m the only one in this campaign to offer that.”
She said she had “learned a lot” from the experience traveling through Scotland coronavirus pandemic, saying she had the “experience it takes to drive the country through the rest of this and then hopefully into a brighter future.”
With more half of all Scots now on at least one dose of the coronavirus vaccine and infection levels and hospital numbers falling, she said Scotland was in a “much better, stronger place than we’ve been all year”.
But she added, “There are still some tough times and some big decisions ahead and I believe I now have the experience to move across the country.”
Central to this is the question of Scotland’s future in the UK, with the SNP arguing that independence is necessary to ensure that people north of the border are in control.
Mrs. Sturgeon, who once promised another referendum Health coronavirus crisis is over, stated: “Recovery is not independent of who makes the decisions and where the power lies.
“If we don’t decide to take the longer-term recovery into our own hands, the real risk, just like after the financial crash, is that we still have a decade of Tory cuts.
“I’ve done my best to put this country through a Covid pandemic for a year. I’ll do that, any time I’m awake will be on that for as long as it lasts.
“But if we overcome the crisis, it actually matters for our long-term recovery.”
She added: “It shouldn’t be me as an individual politician, any more than Boris Johnson as an individual politician who should be the future of Scotland, it should be the people of Scotland, it’s a basic principle of democracy.
My focus, however, will be to continue to guide us through Covid, and yes, give people the right to decide what kind of country we want Scotland to recover and who should be at the helm. I don’t want Boris. makes the decisions about the country that will become Scotland. ”