Alex Salmond: ‘UK Labour is pinching key SNP policies’

Alex Salmond has suggested UK Labour may be looking to copy several key SNP policies. Picture: John Devlin
Alex Salmond has suggested UK Labour may be looking to copy several key SNP policies. Picture: John Devlin
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Alex Salmond has accused UK Labour of becoming a “magpie party” by copying several key SNP policies introduced over the last decade.

The former First Minister said various manifesto leaks suggested Jeremy Corbyn’s party had pinched ideas from the Nationalist government at Holyrood.

Salmond used free tuition fees, an end to hospital parking charges, honouring NHS pay reviews and a push for renewable energy as examples of policies that Labour is considering adopting ahead of the General Election.

A draft copy of Labour’s Westminster manifesto was leaked to the London press late last night, prompting a flurry of debate about Corbyn’s alleged desire to adopt more left-leaning policies such as the renationalisation of the railways and the post office.

In a series of messages posted on Thursday, Salmond said: “Have UK Labour become a ‘magpie party’, copying key SNP policies of ten years in Government?

“Notice how Labour’s various manifesto leaks and announcements suggest they have pinched many policies of the SNP’s in Government.

“Free tuition fees brought in by the SNP in 2008, an end to hospital parking charges also in 2008.

“Honouring NHS pay reviews which is why Scottish Band 5 nurses get paid up to £300 more than in England.

“Abolishing the hated bedroom tax - carried through by the SNP in 2014.

Renewable electricity generation to 60% - Scotland already there - and has hit 60% of consumption this year and our world leading carbon reduction targets 3 years early.

“Imitation is the sincerest form of flattery - what a pity Labour in Scotland didn’t support the SNP Government’s enlightened programme.”

Corbyn was accused by rival parties of presiding over a “total shambles” after the draft manifesto was leaked.

The document suggests Labour will commit to nationalising the railways, creating a public energy provider, rolling out collective bargaining for employees, and adding £250bn of public spending.

He cancelled an appearance at a poster launch this morning to deal with “internal matters”.

Labour’s shadow cabinet and party leadership assembling in London for a scheduled meeting to sign off the manifesto, were quizzed on its contents by reporters despite not having seen the document before.

READ MORE: Corbyn in election “shambles” as Labour manifesto leaks