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An outraged LBC caller has criticised Nicola Sturgeon‘s desperate attempt to hold a second independence referendum in an impassionate speech, claiming there is no motive to hold a second divisive vote while the country is an “utter mess.”

In the weeks leading up to the First Minister’s indyref2 announcement, opposition leaders have been pinpointing the crippling problems facing Scotland – such as the cost-of-living crisis and the NHS shortages. Although polls show the Scottish public is divided on independence, Ms Sturgeon is still trying to press ahead with an unpopular second referendum.

The move led to ire from LBC caller Stuart, from Edinburgh, who said: “Scotland is an utter mess. There’s no reason for doing this. Our health service is a joke. It’s collapsing. We’ve got the highest rate of drug deaths in Europe, with no sign of that changing. We’ve got massive problems and this is what they’re doing?”

In May, Scottish Conservatives leader Douglas Ross, who repeatedly criticised the SNP for turning a blind eye to Scots’ real problems, slashed the SNP for “presiding over the huge rise in numbers” of drug-related deaths. In 2020, Scotland had the second-highest rate of drug-related deaths in Europe, with more than 1,300 deaths registered by the National Records of Scotland – the highest death toll since records began in 1996.

Stuart said: “She does not have a mandate on local elections to call for another referendum. This is an utter disgrace. She’d had this party, the party had 14 years to get something right. And they are still getting it wrong. And they’ll get it wrong with independence because they won’t get independence.”

At Tuesday’s conference announcing her roadmap to get a referendum, Nicola Sturgeon pinned all her hopes on the Supreme Court. Instead of waiting for Boris Johnson to greenlight her request – which the Prime Minister has so far turned down – she has decided to opt for another legal route and asked the Supreme Court to give a ruling on the legality of Indyref2.

Opposition leaders have pushed back against a second referendum, saying Scotland is mired in issues like the NHS crisis and the cost of living.

“We can’t run ourselves properly,” Stuart added. “We can’t do it now. Maybe we’ll be able to do it in the future. But this is a United Kingdom. It’s one country, it is one people, one country that can go forward… we’ve just come out of a pandemic.”

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