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Divers hits back at Lochhead Labour comments, saying he never received a "thank you card" for working closely with SNP

By Lewis McBlane

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MORAY Labour leader Councillor John Divers has rejected comments by Moray MSP Richard Lochhead about SNP cooperation talks.

John Divers hit out at comments from SNP MSP Richard Lochhead.
John Divers hit out at comments from SNP MSP Richard Lochhead.

The comments, during the first council meeting since the local election, took aim at what Cllr Divers viewed as unfair intervention by SNP politician Mr Lochhead during Council coalition negotiations.

In a statement to the Northern Scot, Mr Lochhead said: “People across Moray need Labour and other councillors to do the right thing, to put the needs and interests of their communities first.

“The reality is only the SNP or the heartless, intolerant, right-wing Tories can lead the Moray Council and a Tory administration would be a disaster for Moray and for local services.

"Labour councillors have a big choice to make.

"They can either work with the SNP to deliver a stable administration that wants to mitigate the impact of the Tory’s cost of living crisis, or they can sit on their hands and hand the keys of power to the Tories."

Cllr Divers expressed his frustration with Mr Lochhead's comments and highlighted his close work with the SNP minority administration.

He said: "I know, from recent comments in the press by a local MSP, I am surprised to learn of his sudden interest in Moray Council's Labour councillors.

"Having spent the last three to four years actively supporting an SNP minority administration – I have to say I am yet to receive a thank you card from Richard Lochhead.

"He has totally ignored the fact that I have worked with the SNP administration over the last number of years."

The SNP-Labour barbs come as the Conservative group of Moray councillors have established a minority administration.

Labour refused to support either the SNP or the Conservatives in forming an administration, choosing to abstain along with three other members.

The large bloc of abstaining councillors could threaten the Conservative administration in future.

Cllr Divers said: "Whatever new administration that is formed should be on notice, however, that if they fail to build consensus, their administration may not last very long - as happened previously."

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