Page last updated at 14:47 GMT, Tuesday, 20 November 2012

Scottish Parliament

Education Secretary Mike Russell gave a "full and unreserved" apology to MSPs for giving mistaken information about college budgets in Scotland, during topical questions on 20 November 2012.

Labour MSP Hugh Henry had asked when the cabinet secretary first became aware that there would be a reduction in college budgets for 2012-13.

Mr Russell said he had made a "genuine mistake" in June in an answer to Labour MSP Hanzala Malik, when he said the budget had gone up, when in fact after budget revisions it had gone down by £9.3m since 2011-12.

The cabinet secretary's apology follows a similar apology on 15 November 2012 by Alex Salmond, who also gave the incorrect figures on college funding during first minister's question time

Mr Henry accused Mr Russell of knowingly misleading MSPs and asked why he hadn't resigned.

Mr Russell said his answer in June had "been given in good faith" and said he was "entirely happy to take part in" a debate on colleges called for by the Scottish Liberal Democrats for 22 November 2012.

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