UKIP has “massive support” in Falkirk and looks likely to win the seat in the General Election, the party’s leader in Scotland has said.
David Coburn, candidate for the seat, said it was an “ideal” target because of its thriving industry, as he launched Ukip’s Scottish manifesto at a hotel in the town centre. Re-industrialising Scotland is at the heart of the party’s plans, he said.
We have got massive support here and it looks like we are going to win in FalkirkDavid Coburn
Mr Coburn told the audience of supporters that Labour had “disgraced themselves here”, while Falkirk voters were not interested in the SNP, as he backed plans for fracking to keep Grangemouth open.
“They (people in Falkirk) are not interested in the Scottish Nationalists because the Scottish Nationalists are not good for the business of Falkirk,” he said.
“They are not interested in fracking, which is essential to keep Grangemouth open.
“They are not interested in coal technology or improving it.
“They really just want to send us back to a William Wallace pre-industrialised age, but I think the vast majority of people would like to have their central heating, thank you very much.”
He continued: “We have got massive support here and it looks like we are going to win in Falkirk, fingers crossed, or at least do extremely well.”
Mr Coburn, who was elected as an MEP last year, added that there were a lot of “quiet Ukip voters” across Scotland who are “frightened of cybernats” but “quietly voting Ukip as they did when they put me in”.
Mr Coburn’s remarks contrasted with those of Nigel Farage, who last week described the chances of winning a seat in Scotland as “remote”, stating that the election would be a stepping stone to winning at Holyrood in 2016.
Ukip’s policies for Scotland include a move towards federalism, with a constitutional convention to establish a future UK framework for the governance of the country. The party also wants to scrap the Barnett Formula, the funding mechanism which determines Scotland’s devolved budget.
Other policies include a pledge for Scottish MPs to abstain from voting on English matters, the retention and renewal of Trident, and the introduction of fracking if it is proved safe and wanted by local people.
Mr Coburn and his colleagues shrugged off suggestions that the party was “amateur” in Scotland, after failing to provide copies of its manifesto at the launch.
Mr Coburn said Ukip’s candidates were “real people with real jobs”, as he was yesterday asked why some had failed to attend hustings events in their constituencies.