The Radical Independence Campaign (RIC) is calling on supporters of Scottish and Welsh Independence and for Irish reunification to make a protest at the UK Supreme Court in London on Tuesday 11 October at 10am, writes Mike Picken, when the Court will begin hearing evidence on whether the Scottish government has the legal powers to call a second independence referendum in October 2023.
RIC has called for Scottish independence supporters and allies to gather outside the court from 10am on Tuesday morning to peacefully assert our right to hold a referendum.
There is a Facebook event page here:
The hearing will consider a reference from Scotland’s most senior legal officer, Lord Advocate Dorothy Bain, under the provisions of the devolution legislation (the Scotland Act 1998) allowing her to refer a matter to the UK Supreme Court for determination. The Court will be asked to decide whether a proposed consultative referendum on Scottish Independence is within the current legal powers of the Scottish Parliament. The UK government of the new Conservative Prime Minister, Liz Truss, will oppose the proposed referendum through the offices of its legal officer, the Advocate General. There will also be a formal intervention heard in favour of the rights of the Scottish Parliament and people for self determination, submitted by the Scottish National Party (SNP)
This legal battle follows the May 2021 election to the Scottish Parliament when a majority of members (MSPs) elected for the Scottish National Party (SNP) and the Scottish Green Party had a manifesto commitment to hold such a referendum in the first half of the parliamentary session (ie before the end of 2023). The UK Tory government now headed by Liz Truss and her band of right wing Brexit supporters, and supported by the Labour Party official opposition of Keir Starmer, is totally opposed to holding such a referendum and is trying to block it by any means available, even though a majority of the Scottish Parliament have been elected on that basis. The UK Supreme Court is now being asked to determine who has the power to call a referendum.
The Radical Independence Campaign (RIC) is saying that the people of Scotland must be allowed to decide, not the Westminster Parliament and not the courts.
The UK Supreme Court is based in London, but is the only court that covers the whole of the UK – which is divided into separate legal systems: that of Scotland, whose legal systems and institutions are more closely related to the ‘Civil Law’ systems of Europe and were preserved as independent under the 1707 union of England and Scotland; that of the largely ‘Common Law’ system of England, which historically also included Wales though there is now a small separate body of Welsh law since legal powers of Senedd Cymru were changed in 2007; and that of the part of the north of Ireland under UK state control, a direct legacy of the colonial partition (‘Northern Ireland’). The eleven Judges in the UK Supreme Court are drawn from all of the legal systems; although the majority are from England, the current President of the Court is a Scottish Judge. Five of the Judges will hear the case and a decision is expected in two to three months, possibly sooner.
RIC is pointing out that the decision of the Court will also have significant implications for the increasing numbers supporting independence for Wales and the reunification of Ireland, and it is calling on supporters of those causes to join them at the Court and build links across the UK state for the right of the nations within the UK state to self determination.
ecosocialist.scot hopes to provide further coverage of the protest and the Supreme Court hearing so please return here for more updates.
Radical Independence Campaign
Another Scotland Is Possible
The Radical Independence Campaign works for an independent Scottish republic. We see independence as a means to achieve the radical change that Scotland urgently needs. We stand for a Scotland that is:
- For a democratic, secular, socially just and environmentally sustainable Scottish republic.
- Action based on the sovereignty of the people not the UK Crown, leading to the setting up of a Constituent Assembly.
- Action to establish universal health care, education, housing, income, pensions and trade union rights; and to win land reform and challenge environmental degradation.
- Equality and opposition to discrimination on grounds of sex, gender, sexuality, race, ethnicity, religion/belief, disability or age
- Solidarity with the struggles for workers’ rights, democracy and self-determination, based on internationalism from below
- Support for Scotland’s artistic and cultural revival in all its languages