The BBC savage for not holding the SNP accountable | United Kingdom | New


The BBC has been accused of failing to hold Scottish nationalist politicians accountable as its presenters treat Scotland as a ‘distant nation’ they know little about. Political journalist Alan Cochrane has said Nicola Sturgeon’s ‘Summer of Discontent’ should be seen as an attempt to get the national broadcaster to facilitate her party’s ride as she tries to break up the UK.

Mr Cochrane said: ‘It is a maddening prospect for most Scots to be asked again if they wish to remain British when it has not even been a decade since they voted decisively for exactly that .

“Equally infuriating, however, is the prospect that the British Broadcasting Corporation will once again maintain its deserved bad reputation for failing to hold accountable those who want to break up the UK.”

He claimed that while Scottish independence might not be the main concern of many people across the country, broadcasters needed to study the issues in Scotland in order to stop giving nationalist politicians a free ride by reporting on the potential breakup of the nation as a Scottish regional problem.

He said: “The Scottish Prime Minister’s campaign must be seen for what it is – a ruthless attempt to get our national broadcaster to give his party its usual easy ride, as it seeks to dismantle the Union of Scotland, England, Wales and Northern Ireland against the will of the Scottish majority, freely expressed in a referendum just eight years ago.

“There is certainly nothing more important to our national broadcaster than the future of this nation.

“So it behooves the BBC, in its network output, to treat the threat of the break-up of Britain not as a remote regional affair, but as an important issue for every listener everywhere.”

Writing in the Telegraph, he then denounced the BBC’s main broadcasters and “their M25-centric leaders” for “knowing little and caring less” about issues surrounding Scottish independence. He said the result was that Nationalist politicians were treated with “ridiculous courtesy”.

While presenters often knew enough about their subject to tie Labor and Conservative politicians ‘in knots’, many presenters treated Scottish issues as if they were interviewing someone from a faraway country, according to Mr Cochrane.

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Mr Cochrane pointed to today’s Amol Rajan interview with SNP trade spokesman Drew Hendry, during which the presenter did little to question or probe the responses of Mr Hendry.

He noted that Mr Rajan did not question Drew Hendry’s suggestion that Scotland was rich in natural resources, even though the SNP and their coalition partner the Greens want nothing more to do with North Sea oil.

Moreover, when Mr Hendry suggested that Scotland had an “absolutely fantastic” hospitality sector, his interview neglected to ask about Nicola Sturgeon’s prolonged Covid restrictions – something which, according to owners of Scottish restaurants, has “almost closed” them.

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Mr Cochrane mocked Mr Hendry’s recent proclamation of a survey finding Scotland to be the ‘most educated’ country in Europe, accusing Ms Sturgeon of failing to close the gap in success between rich and poor students.

As Nicola Sturgeon fights for the second independence referendum in a decade this summer, Mr Cochrane has urged the BBC to start holding his nationalist party to account.

He said the SNP leader must not be given ‘freedom of the airwaves’ to say how she planned to circumvent Boris Johnson’s rejection of a second referendum and called for the BBC to be held to account at every turn .

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