First Minister of Scotland Nicola Sturgeon resigns after eight years in power

Nicola Sturgeon announcing her resignation after eight years in power. (Jane Barlow/AP) (Jane Barlow/)

The prime minister of Scotlandthe independentista nicola Sturgeonweakened by a controversial law that recently made it easier to gender transitionannounced his resignation on Wednesday after eight years in power during which he enjoyed high popularity.

The 52-year-old leader, who for years has been leading the fight for a new referendum on independence from the United Kingdomassured that his resignation “is not a reaction to short-term problems”, but the conviction that “no individual should be dominant in a system for a long time.”

“In my mind and in my heart I know that the time has come, that it is the right time for me for my party and for the country, and for this reason today I announce my intention to resign as prime minister and leader of my party,” she said at a press conference in Edinburgh, specifying that she will remain in office until her successor is appointed.

He stressed however that will not leave politics, because she remains committed to issues such as improving opportunities for young people and “gaining independence”. “It is a cause to which I have dedicated my whole life and in which I believe,” she assured with a tired and circumspect face.

The news, announced an hour earlier by the British media, came as a surprise for the whole country.

In January, following the shock resignation of the New Zealand Prime Minister, jacinda ardernSturgeon stated that she was still “full of energy” and that she did not feel “any close” to the time when she would have to leave.

Sturgeon became leader of the Scottish National Party (SNP) and Scottish Home Rule following the resignation of his predecessor and mentor alex salmond in 2014, after Scots voted 55% to remain in the UK.

Since then, with patience and determination, he has renewed the fight for independencereinvigorated by the Brexit which was overwhelmingly opposed by the Scots.

Since then he has defended calling a second referendum, an option firmly rejected by the central executive in London.

Popularity and controversy

with very high levels of popularity for his successful management of the pandemic of covid-19, which contrasted with the chaotic policies of the British prime minister Boris JohnsonSturgeon accumulated electoral successes and obtained a new independence majority in the regional Parliament together with the environmentalists in May 2021.

But it was weakened by the approval last December of a highly controversial law facilitating gender transitionallowing it from the age of 16 and without the need for a medical diagnosis.

The British Conservative executive of Rishi Sunak He said he would oppose it and just after its approval a scandal added fuel to the fire: a transgender woman convicted of raping women before her transition was incarcerated in a women’s prison, which provoked strong reactions.

Finally, the prisoner was transferred to a prison for men.

Born in the industrial city of irvinsouthwest of GlasgowWith an electrician father and a nurse mother, Sturgeon joined the SNP at the age of 16, as vice coordinator of youth.

Peter Murrell, her husband, is the general director of the party. The couple, who have no children, met more than 20 years ago at a meeting of the youth of the SNP, of which Sturgeon became one of the first representatives in the Scottish Home Rule Parliament when it was formed in 1999.

(With information from AFP)