Ukip leader Nigel Farage has described activists who called for his only elected parliamentarian in Scotland to quit as “totally and utterly irrelevant”.
Ten party activists have called for “gaffe-prone” MEP David Coburn to be removed as Ukip’s leader in Scotland, insisting he is “not suited to being the Scottish face of the Brexit campaign”.
Mr Farage, though, said they are a “few disappointed people who are not in positions to win seats” and stood shoulder-to-shoulder with his Scottish party leader during a campaign trip to Inverness.
He also welcomed the recent support for Brexit at an STUC fringe event in Dundee led by RMT general secretary Mick Cash and Communist Party candidate Raymond Mennie.
Mr Farage said: “Oh, the jealousy of the disappointed in life.”
He defended Mr Coburn’s colourful antics and irreverent comments.
“We could become puritans, I suppose, and follow an Oliver Cromwell approach to politics but it’s never going to happen,” he said. “Perhaps we say some things sometimes that don’t fit in with the PC agenda that now dominates the whole of Edinburgh – so what?”
He described Mick Cash’s Scottish Left Leave Campaign as “patriotic”.
“They believe that their parents and grandparents fought, and in some cases sacrificed everything they had, for us to be a free, independent democratic nation,” he said.
Mr Mennie told STUC delegates the EU is the fulfilment of the ideas of the Nazis.
Mr Farage said: “I don’t know which it is, but I can tell you that it’s wrong, the people have been bullied into it and they’ve never had a say.”