AS we continue to fight the Covid pandemic, the Prime Minister was appropriately right here in Glasgow to see the work being done as we ramp up vaccinations as well as the ongoing remarkable level of testing being carried out on a daily basis.

If you hadn’t noticed, he visited the Covid vaccination centre in Castlemilk which the British Army are helping to set up, as well as seeing how the UK Government are helping to deliver 85,000 tests every single day at the Queen Elizabeth University Hospital’s Lighthouse Lab.

We are fighting this pandemic across this nation. In the course of this work, it was right and proper for the Prime Minister of the whole of the United Kingdom to be briefed by those on the ground.

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Unsurprisingly, his visit was met with derision and criticism from those across the SNP.

From the First Minister downwards, they couldn’t resist trying to stir up grievance over his visit, even though essential work is an allowed reason for travel. Their official Twitter account pandered to their supporters with a message about “Staying at Home”.

It is draining and absolutely tiresome that they feel the need to always stir up their supporters and say the Prime Minister isn’t welcome in Scotland. Of course he is. But be under no illusions, the SNP have been at it for years, from Theresa May to David Cameron, and even now they have a go at former Labour prime minister Gordon Brown for daring to stand against their divisive agenda.

The truth is there are clear exemptions in the guidelines for work-related purposes – indeed, that is presumably why the SNP’s Glasgow council leader, Susan Aitken, visited a vaccination hub in Drumchapel under the same lockdown rules less than a fortnight ago.

Glasgow Times:

Presumably that is also why Nicola Sturgeon herself, under Level Three restrictions that advised against non-essential travel, arranged a photo op in an Edinburgh hospital at the beginning of the vaccine rollout.

While I have questioned Susan Aitken’s definition of work in the past, remembering that Paul Simon concert she put through on her council expenses, I would not begrudge her or Nicola Sturgeon the right to do their job and oversee the progression of the vaccination programme here in Glasgow. It is the height of hypocrisy, though, for them to whip up their supporters in a nationalist rage against Boris Johnson, some of whom went so far as to report the Prime Minister to the police.

Although a political opponent, even Labour’s leader Keir Starmer acknowledged Boris Johnson’s right to travel across the United Kingdom in the national interest as part of our battle against coronavirus.

It was curious therefore to see Scottish Labour MSP Neil Findlay play into the nationalists’ hands by publicly disagreeing with his boss.

We expect this sort of rhetoric from SNP politicians any time the Prime Minister travels to Scotland, but for a Scottish Labour MSP to position themselves in direct contradiction to the UK party’s leadership and instead ally themselves with those that wish to see the destruction of the United Kingdom really says it all about how far they have fallen in standing up to support our United Kingdom.

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I fully accept many people reading this and living in the city will dislike Boris Johnson.

You may see him as an inarticulate buffoon, or incompetent, or both these things. Such views are perfectly fine for people to express in our democracy. But let’s be real – if the Prime Minister visits Scotland, then the SNP will always say he is not welcome, even if travel restrictions aren’t in place. On the other hand, if he doesn’t come to Scotland they will complain that he doesn’t care about our communities here.

While the nationalist grievance machine attempts to create an “other” out of our fellow British citizens, the Prime Minister will be focusing on uniting this nation and building back better after this pandemic is behind us. Like or loathe the individual, the office of the Prime Minister is welcome in all parts of our United Kingdom.