SNP minister ‘finds it difficult to swallow’ claims from defection MP

Lisa Cameron became a Conservative earlier this week as she claimed she had been ostracised by the SNP group at Westminster.

A senior Scottish Government minister has suggested she does not believe claims from an MP who defected to the Conservatives about her mental health.

Lisa Cameron quit the SNP earlier this week, crossing the floor to the Tories amid reports suggesting Prime Minister Rishi Sunak was involved in convincing her to make the move.

Dr Cameron accused the SNP group at Westminster of being “toxic”, claiming she sought 12 months of counselling and needed antidepressants after she spoke out against the group’s reported support for MP Patrick Grady, who was found to have sexually harassed a party staffer.

The East Kilbride, Strathaven and Lesmahagow MP said she was ostracised by the party.

But speaking on the BBC’s Sunday Show from the SNP conference, Scottish Net Zero Secretary Mairi McAllan claimed it is hard to believe anything Dr Cameron said after a leaked video of an internal hustings showed the MP hitting out at the Tories on September 27, before joining the party on October 12.

Mairi McAllan
Mairi McAllan was speaking from the SNP’s conference in Aberdeen (Jane Barlow/PA)

Ms McAllan said: “I know Lisa Cameron personally, our constituencies overlap to some degree, and personally I wish her no ill will.

“But I find it hard to believe anything that somebody says when one minute they are on video saying that the Tories have dragged Scotland out of the EU and we need independence, and in the next breath, they’re joining the Conservative and Unionist Party.

“I personally don’t know any of the details of (Dr Cameron’s mental health).

“I understand that our Westminster leader and deputy leader reached out to Lisa and sought to support her in that, and I don’t think that she was able to articulate the nub of the problem when they had that conversation.

“I’m not saying I don’t believe Lisa, I’m saying I haven’t given it a great deal of thought given everything else that’s going on.

“But equally, I do find it a little difficult to swallow what somebody says when they are so willing to have two very different public positions in such a short period of time.”

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