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SNP splashes taxpayers’ cash on ‘How to run a government’ book

(Photo by Russell Cheyne - Pool/Getty Images)

As if there aren’t enough questions about the SNP’s spending habits, it turns out the Nats have been using £55,000 of taxpayer’s money to fund their library collection. An investigation by Labour has unearthed some rather amusing revelations about the SNP’s reading list, not least that the party has been busy educating itself with books on, er, ‘How To Run A Government’. That might have come in useful 16 years ago…

Public funds were used to purchase 22 copies of the book – almost enough prints for every member of Humza Yousaf’s cabinet. Mr S allowed himself a chuckle at the irony of the book’s tagline, which reads: ‘…so that citizens benefit and taxpayers don’t go crazy’. Try telling that to the swathes of independence donors who don’t know where their money has gone. Or, indeed, the taxpayers who funded these very purchases.

In another transaction, £4.19 was spent by one genius on a copy of the party’s own independence white paper from 2014. The move is more than a little embarrassing given that it can be downloaded for free from the Scottish government’s website…

The party’s self-obsession doesn’t end there, however. The full list of books reveals that Sturgeon-mania remains rife: six copies of Women Hold Up Half the Sky: Selected Speeches of Nicola Sturgeon made the cut. Do the nationalists know no bounds for their narcissism?

Astonishingly, they might. Mr S was heartened to see that other purchased prints included ‘Why Does Everything Go Wrong’ and ‘I’m Not Good Enough’. Perhaps at long last the SNP is becoming self-aware. How very refreshing!

After today’s bemusing reports, First Minister Humza Yousaf has called for an investigation into his government’s credit card spending. While using public funds for reading material seems more than a tad unnecessary, it can’t be said that the books won’t come in handy.

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Steerpike is The Spectator's gossip columnist, serving up the latest tittle tattle from Westminster and beyond. Email tips to or message @MrSteerpike

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