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Last Updated: Sunday, 25 April, 2004, 11:30 GMT 12:30 UK
MSP shock over radio suspension
Campbell Martin
Campbell Martin will face a disciplinary hearing on 8 May
An MSP found out he was suspended from the Scottish National Party after hearing it on the radio.

West of Scotland MSP Campbell Martin faces a disciplinary hearing on 8 May after suggesting party leader John Swinney should be replaced.

Mr Martin said the party had not spoken to him about the hearing.

Mr Swinney told BBC Scotland's Sunday Live programme he would not allow party in-fighting to threaten the SNP's political ambitions.

Mr Martin said: "It's quite incredible for the national convenor of the SNP to go on national radio to announce a member has been suspended."

Maybe when the SNP actually begins to talk to me I will find out what the charges are against me
Campbell Martin
The SNP leader used his speech at the party's conference in Aberdeen to call for unity and support his leadership.

Mr Swinney said the SNP's national secretary had suspended Mr Martin until a disciplinary meeting on 8 May.

"I can make no further comment about the details of that case, but I told the party conference that internal sniping had to stop," the SNP leader said.

"The hundreds of party members at the conference over the weekend made clear their contempt for people who take part in internal sniping.

SNP leader John Swinney
John Swinney said he would not tolerate party in-fighting

"Action has now been taken and I expect party members to concentrate on campaigning for independence and move on."

Mr Swinney said he was determined to prevent anyone from undermining the SNP's performance.

However, Mr Martin said he was bewildered by his suspension and "had no idea" what he would say at the hearing.

Need to talk

"Maybe when the SNP actually begins to talk to me I will find out what the charges are against me and what I have to say in defence," he said.

"I think it's typical of the SNP at the moment, because if it won't talk to people like me who are party MSPs, how are we expected to talk to the public and get people to vote for us?

"There are clearly fundamental problems with the current John Swinney and SNP and I'll be happy to state my case if and when it lets me know when that will be."


SEE ALSO:
Swinney outlines Europe 'vision'
24 Apr 04  |  Scotland
Swinney wins first reform battle
23 Apr 04  |  Scotland
Nationalists face party shake-up
23 Jan 04  |  Scotland


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