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MSP first to reveal plans to stand for SNP depute leader

Glasgow Cathcart MSP James Dornan announced his bid to replace Angus Robertson.

James Dornan: MSP announced his intentions on Twitter.
James Dornan: MSP announced his intentions on Twitter.

SNP MSP James Dornan has announced his intention to stand for the party's vacant depute leader post.

The Glasgow Cathcart MSP revealed his plans on Twitter, making him the first politician to say he will vie to replace Angus Robertson, who quit the position at the weekend.

Dornan tweeted: "As of February 5th 2018, I would like to announce that I will be seeking nominations for the position of depute leader for the Scottish National Party, when the process commences."

He added in a subsequent tweet: "Angus Robertson was a fantastic depute leader however with a new depute comes new opportunities, now is the right time for me to unite Yes supporters, party members and the SNP as we move towards independence!"

A former councillor in Glasgow, the 64-year-old was elected as part of the intake in the SNP's sweeping 2011 Holyrood election victory.

Dornan is currently the convener of Holyrood's education and skills committee as well as a strong opponent to repeal of the Offensive Behaviour of Football Act.

He also won praise from First Minister Nicola Sturgeon and Scottish Conservatives leader Ruth Davidson in April when he revealed details of his past battle with depression.

Angus Robertson announced on Saturday he was stepping down as SNP depute leader with immediate effect to pursue "new career opportunities".

Robertson, who was MP for Moray for 16 years, explained the decision in a letter to the party leadership, telling Nicola Sturgeon he valued her "friendship, professional and personal support".

It came eight months after he lost his Westminster constituency in June's general election.

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