Andy Doig has left the SNP after criticising party leaders
Andy Doig, a councillor who has represented the Johnstone North, Kilbarchan and Lochwinnoch ward since 2012, has quit the SNP after accusing the party’s leadership of ‘MacMafia Tactics’.
Having been an SNP member since 1979, Cllr Doig said he is glad to be “free from the shackles of party politics” after he was controversially deselected as a council candidate ahead of local authority elections later this year.
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In all conscience, I cannot remain within a party which is happy to use private emails to smear me and which now operates in such an authoritarian manner
He said: "I am sick of the MacMafia tactics being used against me by the party I used to love.
"I have always served my constituents to the best of my ability, regardless of their own political views, and it is they I serve before any party political machine.
"I will now sit on Renfrewshire Council as an Independent councillor and will continue to represent them with the same dedication, vigour and commitment as ever."
Mr Doig blames SNP national secretary Angus MacLeod (R) for the deselection decision
Mr Doig hit the headlines in 2015 after he was suspended for issuing a “spoof email” about SNP colleagues to two SNP members in what he describes as “a lapse of judgment”.
Cllr Doig said: “A year ago, the SNP Appeals Committee found I was guilty of a lapse of judgement but, crucially, found I personally was not homophobic or misogynistic, that I had not composed the spoof email with malice and that I did not intend it to be made public.
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"Right back to 2015, the SNP leadership wanted to get me in a night of the long sgian dubhs[small knives worn as part of traditional Scottish Highland dress]."
As recently as last week Mr Doig candidacy was upheld by the SNP’s National Executive Committee (NEC), but party bigwigs have now deselected him as a possible council representative.
The SNP said that its National Executive Committee "considered that Mr Doig was not a fit and proper person to represent the SNP at the coming election".
The news comes amid rumours SNP leader Nicola Sturgeon could be plotting another Scottish referendum
Mr Doig added: "I am sure I will not be alone in scenting a vendetta here.
"In all conscience, I cannot remain within a party which is happy to use private emails to smear me and which now operates in such an authoritarian manner."
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