Nicola Sturgeon was shamed over her party’s pro-EU position for an independent Scotland on Monday as she refused to credit the UK government for its successful procurement of Covid-19 vaccinations.
In an interview on Good Morning Britain, it was put to Scotland’s First Minister that an independent Scotland signed up to the European Union would have set the country back and 2.8 million Scots would not have received their coronavirus jabs.
“Independence is actually about expanding our horizons and not narrowing them,” claimed Sturgeon who strongly supports a self-governing Scotland rejoining the European bloc despite more Scots voting for Brexit than voting for the SNP.
GMB presenter Sean Fletcher questioned how such a nation would have fared if, like every other EU member state it had signed up to the joint vaccine procurement process advocated by the European Commission last year.
“It’s worth pointing out that if an independent Scotland was in Europe you wouldn’t have 2.8million people vaccinated would you?” Fletcher asked the SNP leader.
“I think that is utterly nonsense,” Sturgeon raged but Fletcher hit back: “Look at Europe, they’re way behind in their vaccinated programme!”
“The UK was still in the transition period when it procured the vaccine and that didn’t prevent it procuring the vaccine on a four-nations basis with England, Wales, Northern Ireland and Scotland,” claimed Sturgeon, ignoring the fact that Britain had fundamentally withdrawn from EU membership by this point.
“The way we procure the flu vaccine every year, that was done. Nothing would have prevented that happening had we still been in the European Union,” the First Minister claimed.
“Of course the delivery of the vaccination programme in Scotland is down to the sterling efforts and fantastic work of the NHS Scotland vaccinators and teams across the country,” Sturgeon added, saying NHS workers had her “deep and everlasting appreciation for the fantastic work they’re doing.”
“And the procurement of the UK government getting those vaccines,” Fletcher quipped.
“Look, hold on! We do it voluntarily on a four-nation basis. It’s not a gift from the UK government to Scotland!” slammed Sturgeon, refusing to give Westminster any credit for tying down early procurement of both the Oxford AstraZeneca and Pfizer jabs.
It’s not the first time Sturgeon’s EU plans for a lone Scotland have been slammed in recent weeks, with the SNP leader facing fierce criticism for not providing updated economic modelling for her independence dream on the Andrew Marr Show last weekend in another botched interview.
She was also forced to disclose that a border between England and Scotland would be inevitable post-Brexit as she aimed to reassure voters that she would “work with others to make sure that we keep trade flowing easily”.