SNP appoints Stuart McDonald as new treasurer after Colin Beattie’s resignation | UK News

The Scottish National Party (SNP) has appointed MP Stuart McDonald as its new treasurer following the resignation of Colin Beattie on Wednesday.

Mr Beattie stepped down after he was arrested in connection with an investigation into the party’s finances.

He was subsequently released without charge pending further enquiries.

His arrest came after the party’s former chief executive Peter Murrell – who is married to the former first minister Nicola Sturgeon – was also arrested and questioned before being released without charge.

The police are looking into how more than £600,000 in donations to the party set aside for an independence referendum was used.

Mr McDonald represents Cumbernauld, Kilsyth and Kirkintilloch for the SNP at Westminster.

He has held several positions for the party, and is currently their justice and immigration spokesman.

The 44-year-old said: “While it is a difficult and challenging time, I look forward to getting on with the job of national treasurer to help take forward the important work being led by our new party leader, Humza Yousaf, to improve the SNP’s governance and transparency.

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“I’ve no hesitation in stepping forward when asked to do my part in keeping our party firmly on a campaign footing as the case for Scottish independence becomes more compelling that ever.”

The new treasurer has a lot to address, including appointing auditors for the party after the firm Johnston Carmichael resigned in September.

The party’s accounts must be filed to the Electoral Commission in July.

Scottish Labour deputy leader Jackie Baillie said: “Stuart McDonald faces an uphill battle dealing with an SNP high command that clearly don’t think the rules apply to them.

“Despite the SNP’s ongoing crisis it has shown no willingness to change.

“It has failed to suspend senior figures embroiled in a police investigation, and its culture of cover-up and secrecy remain in overdrive.

“This arrogant and sleaze-ridden party needs to start operating with some much-needed transparency and consistency, but I won’t hold my breath.”