Yes Scotland £500,000 in debt after referendum

The Brexit vote has no caused a surge in support for independence a poll has found. Picture: TSPL

The Brexit vote has no caused a surge in support for independence a poll has found. Picture: TSPL

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THE official Yes campaign has admitted it is almost £500,000 in debt after the independence referendum.

They are expected to face questioning after previously filing accounts saying they were £75,000 in the black. Director Scott Martin has said this was due to a “technical amendment” to their accounts.

Nicola Sturgeon was a board member during the referendum

Nicola Sturgeon was a board member during the referendum

Yes Scotland Ltd first filed their accounts in July last year for year ending October 31st, 2014, stating they had a gross asset of £104,082, which included £69,893 in cash. They owed creditors £28, 965 leaving a surplus of £75,117.

But when their accounts were filed for 2015, that number had changed dramatically.

Instead of just owing creditors £29,000, Yes Scotland said they now owed £600,607 for 2014 - more than 20 times the originally stated debt. This now means that the company is now £496, 525 in debt.

Yes Scotland Ltd originally said it would remain independent of SNP funds, but received two cash sums of £275,000 and £550,000 in 2014 from the political party.

The company is now stating its assets and liabilities as zero. The advisory board members includes Nicola Sturgeon, Scottish Green leader Patrick Harvie, former Socialist MSP Colin Fox, the writer Pat Kane, SNP MP Tasmina Ahmed-Sheikh.

Unionist parties said Yes Scotland going broke symbolised the risks of independence.

Labour MSP James Kelly, a former management accountant, said to the Herald: “Yes Scotland and the SNP must explain why in the latest accounts Yes Scotland were in debt to the tune of hundreds of thousands of pounds.

“People who donated to this organisation are entitled to expect open and transparent accounts.”

Scottish Liberal Democrat leader Willie Rennie said: “Yes Scotland’s finances are as volatile as the price of a barrel of oil. They should be more honest about their own finances and more honest about the country’s finances too.”

Deputy Scottish Tory leader Jackson Carlaw said: “Much like the SNP’s plans for independence, something about Yes Scotland’s accounts doesn’t add up. The fact they still exist will perplex many people. Scotland has already voted decisively on independence and the last thing Scots want is another referendum.”

The Better Together 2012 Ltd are showing a surplus of £72,000, largely due to business donations amounting to £711,000 - a large sum compared to just £20,000 for Yes Scotland.

Martin said: “The accounts for 2015 included a technical amendment for the prior period. All referendum expenditure in the accounts was correctly included in the company’s expenditure reported to the Electoral Commission as part of the Yes Scotland referendum campaign.”

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