Rutherglen Reformer: Margaret Ferrier’s local newspaper issues blistering front page attack on disgraced MP

A local newspaper has ripped into disgraced MP Margaret Ferrier, accusing her of “selfishly clinging on” to her seat in Parliament despite admitting to having broken Covid-19 laws.

In a scathing open letter published on its front page, The Rutherglen Reformer, which covers part of Ms Ferrier’s South Lanarkshire constituency, said time is “rapidly running out” for her “to do the honourable thing”.

Ms Ferrier ignited a storm of controversy last week when she admitted she had travelled on a train from Glasgow to London despite developing symptoms of coronavirus.

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Official rules make it clear that anyone suffering from symptoms of the disease, which include a dry cough, raised temperature and loss of taste, must self-isolate while waiting for the result of a test.

Ms Ferrier spoke in Parliament and dined with other MPs without disclosing her symptoms, and later tested positive for the virus.

Despite her confirmed infection, she also admitted to travelling back to Scotland by train.

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SNP Westminster leader Ian Blackford suspended the party whip from Ms Ferrier last week, saying her actions helped “chip away” at trust in politicians.

In a scathing open letter published on its front page, The Rutherglen Reformer, which covers part of Ms Ferrier’s South Lanarkshire constituency, said time is “rapidly running out” for her “to do the honourable thing”.

In May this year, Ms Ferrier said Dominic Cummings’ position was “untenable” after it was revealed that Borish Johnson’s chief adviser had broken lockdown rules.

It later emerged that Ms Ferrier also spoke in front of an elderly church congregation while she had symptoms - a fact she did not disclose in her initial apology.

In its letter, headlined “ENDGAME”, the Rutherglen Reformer accused Ms Ferrier of “embarrassing hypocrisy” and told her to quit before she became “a social pariah and not just a political one.”

The full text of the Reformer’s letter reads:

First Minister Nicola Sturgeon helped Ms Ferrier successfully campaign to win back her South Lanarkshire seat from Labour at the 2019 General Election. (Photo by Jeff J Mitchell/Getty Images)

“Dear Margaret,

“As coronavirus cases across Lanarkshire continue to rise and another lockdown looms, you selfishly cling on to your seat.

“Despite receiving a Covid test and ignoring instructions to remain at home, you cling on.

“Despite visiting a church and reading a lesson to a congregation which included elderly members, you cling on.

“Despite travelling to London by train and speaking in the House of Commons, you cling on.

“Despite receiving confirmation that your test was positive, dining out with colleagues oblivious to your illness and returning home from London by train, you cling on.

“Despite knowing you had tested positive for three whole days before admitting it publicly, you cling on.

“Despite calls for you to resign from the First Minister Nicola Sturgeon, the SNP Westminster leader Ian Blackford, your constituency colleague and friend Clare Haughey MSP and a plethora of other dissenting voices from across the political spectrum, you cling on.

“Despite your embarrassing hypocrisy over Dominic Cummings, you cling on.

“Despite a petition signed by thousands demanding you vacate your position, you cling on.

“Despite a Reformer poll showing more than 95 per cent of participants say you should step down, you cling on.

“And most damningly of all, despite calls for you to go from disgusted constituents who have lost loved ones to this deadly disease, you cling on.

“Ian Blackford has asked you to do the ‘honourable thing’. The time for honour is rapidly running out.

“Think no more about what you want, but instead of what others need.

“Resign, before you become a social pariah and not just a political one.”

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