SNP Westminster leader ‘won’t give up’ lucrative external roles

Ian Blackford stated that he will not give up other roles outside of the House of Commons. Contributed image
Ian Blackford stated that he will not give up other roles outside of the House of Commons. Contributed image
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Ian Blackford, the SNP Westminster leader, has insisted that he will not give up his business interests worth £50,000 a year.

The decision comes despite criticisim from colleagues that ‘a second job means a second master’

The MP, who earns £75,0000 as a senior MP stated that his fully disclosed extra-parliamentary activities were ‘not a distraction’ and took up ‘very little’ time.

Speaking to The Herald, the SNP MP said “I have been a hard-working MP and I will continue to be so.

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“I do think there is a benefit from MPs having experience of life. The fact that I have had interests in business are something, which have helped shape my ability to make sure I can deliver as an MP.”

“I will always reflect on the challenges that are in front of me. These are not a distraction; these are matters that take up very little of my time.

“My priority is, firstly, to represent my constituency and, secondly, to represent the SNP here in Westminster as group leader and I work extremely hard to ensure that I deliver on both of those priorities.”

The issue of second jobs has long been an issue for some MPs with Labour failing to get MPs’ second jobs banned when they attempted to in 2015.

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The most recent report in the MPs’ register, published on May 2, shows that the former investment banker, has been paid £3,000 a month for eight hours’ work per quarter as Chairman of Golden Charter Trust Ltd since December 2015.

The MP also has an additional salary of £1,500 a day for any extra work undertaken.

He has also been paid £1,000 a month since July 2015 for eight hours’ work per quarter as Chairman of Commsworld Plc, based in Edinburgh, with the MP also owning shares in the company worth more than £70,000.