Nicola Sturgeon Resigns: Runners And Riders To Replace Her As Scotland's First Minister

The outgoing leader said the SNP was "awash with talented individuals" who could replace her.
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Nicola Sturgeon’s shock announcement that she will quit as SNP leader and first minister is a pivotal moment for her party, country and the independence movement.

In her resignation speech, Sturgeon said her party was “awash with talented individuals” who could replace her, but would not be drawn on names.

Here HuffPost UK runs through the contenders to Sturgeon’s crown.

Angus Robertson

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Early favourite Angus Robertson is the current culture and external affairs secretary and a former Westminster leader of the SNP. The Edinburgh Central MSP has spent many years at both Westminster and Holyrood and has been a big factor in the SNP push for a second referendum on independence.

His odds are currently 6/4 with William Hill and with Ladbrokes they are 6/5.

Kate Forbes

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The current secretary for finance and economy was elected to parliament in 2016. Forbes, a Gaelic speaker, is currently on maternity leave after giving birth to her first child.

The 32-year old delivered the Scottish government’s budget in 2020 just hours after her predecessor Derek Mackay quit, and was the first woman to do this.

Her odds are currently 11/2 with William Hill and 7/2 with Ladbrokes.

Humza Yousaf

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The 37-year old health secretary is also in the running. He handled the country’s response to the Covid crisis in 2020.

Yousaf was appointed in May 2021 and was the youngest MSP elected to the Scottish Parliament at age 26.

He has served in numerous roles and, in 2018, he was appointed as cabinet secretary for justice. He introduced the Hate Crime Bill, which caused controversy among opposition parties.

William Hill is currently giving him odds of 10/1 and Ladbrokes has him at 10/1.

John Swinney

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The deputy first minister could also throw his hat in the ring. Sturgeon appointed Swinney to his current role when she become first minister in 2014.

He has served as finance secretary from 2007 to 2016 and the education secretary from 2016 to 2021. Swinney briefly served as SNP leader in the early 2000s after Alex Salmond unexpectedly quit as party leader, but later resigned.

His current odds with William Hill are 10/1 and with Ladbrokes are 7/1.


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