Glasgow City Council’s SNP Group today (Tuesday, the 18th of March) elected Councillor Susan Aitken as the new Leader of the Opposition. Councillor Aitken, who replaces Councillor Graeme Hendry in the post, said she was hugely honoured to have been given the support of colleagues in the run up to the Independence referendum in September.
Since becoming the Group’s lead on Social Work in May 2012, Councillor Aitken has successfully held Labour to account over issues such as their decision to close learning disability day centres, introduce charging for community alarms without consultation and, most recently, questioning the need to introduce charging for elderly day care services. Councillor Aitken’s work saw Labour Councillor Matt Kerr sacked as Executive Member for Health and Social Care in the autumn of 2013.
Speaking after the SNP Group Annual General Meeting, Councillor Aitken said: “I am hugely honoured to have been chosen by my colleagues as the new Leader of the Opposition. I am focused on working collectively with my fellow SNP councillors – and those of other parties – to achieve the very best for the people of Glasgow.
“I know there is a great deal to do over the coming months and years. Labour’s leadership in Glasgow is tired. Scratch the surface and there is little vision for our great city. I will be arguing strongly that only the powers of Independence will provide the opportunities to improve the lives of Glaswegians and the economy of our city.
“I want to thank my predecessor, Councillor Graeme Hendry, who has left a solid foundation upon which to build towards the referendum in September and on towards 2017. I wish him well in the future, and look forward to working with him and all my colleagues as we move forwards towards September’s Yes vote.
Councillor Hendry said: “Susan will make a formidable leader for the SNP in Glasgow. With her years of experience behind her and a vibrant and talented group of councillors to lead, I am sure that she will be a great asset to Glasgow and the SNP in this role.”