THE Scottish Government’s lack of clarity on its approach to the Covid-19 inquiries is becoming more alarming by the day.

In June, the First Minister Humza Yousaf promised that all messages, including WhatsApps, had been retained and would be shared with the inquiries in full. However, over the last few weeks, a very different picture has emerged. He appears to have lost control, with his story changing by the day. Last week he applied heavy caveats on what would be given to the UK inquiry, stating it was his “expectation” all “relevant” information would be shared.

The First Minister initially said that the Scottish Government had a policy of retention for WhatsApp messages, only to later claim the policy was to delete them – while also insisting he had kept his own. Despite promising to investigate concerns that messages had been deleted, Mr Yousaf subsequently insisted he could not confirm whether information had been destroyed by officials or Ministers.

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Meanwhile, we have also seen Nicola Sturgeon, Mr Yousaf’s predecessor as First Minister, who was in charge throughout the pandemic, repeatedly refuse to confirm whether she has deleted messages pertinent to the Covid inquiries.

Bereaved families in Scotland waiting to learn the full story of what happened deserve better than the obfuscation, cover-up and betrayal they have had so far. There must be real and full transparency from the Government and straight answers from the First Minister. Anything less will fail not only the bereaved families but the whole country.

As we approach Remembrance Day, I want to thank all our serving and former armed forces personnel for their outstanding contribution to the nation’s security. In an uncertain and volatile world, we are very fortunate to have such excellent and dedicated armed forces.