To: Ms Pamela Nash, Chief Executive, Scotland in Union

cc: Ms Nicola Sturgeon, First Minister

Transparency and accuracy in political campaigning

Dear Ms Nash

I write to you as the leader of Scotland’s largest pro-UK campaign group, to seek your help in promoting better political communication, providing members of the electorate with the transparency and accuracy they deserve and thus helping them to make informed decisions. I feel sure that as a former MP and as a democrat, you will agree with me, on the great importance of protecting these central principles of our democratic system.

I note that your group has a fact check system, further suggesting that this matters to you as much as it does to me.

I have two points to make.

Firstly, seeing recent ‘reader’s’ letters in Scottish newspapers and hearing calls to Radio Scotland, from members of your covert writing group, I have been concerned that none have mentioned their membership of Scotland in Union. I hope you will agree that this breaches the trust which members of the electorate should be able to put in all campaigners.

I attach evidence of the existence of this group and its apparent intention to deceive journalists and the public.

Secondly, I have been concerned by the inaccuracy of the content of the letters and statements made recently by Phil Tate, Professor Emerita Gill Stephenson, Allan Sutherland and David Bone. In every case, false statements were made.  I won’t distract from the main issue here, lack of transparency, and point to these but suggest that in the interests of the reputation of your group you introduce some editorial control.

Yours sincerely,

Professor John Robertson (rtd)