Tele Column – 16th Oct 15

On Monday I was the lead SNP speaker debating broadband roll out across the UK. Westminster being what it is meant I did not get the time allocated to me and had to rush through and indeed, cut out a lot of what I felt needed to be said. Individuals and businesses use broadband to access information, carry out research, bank, trade and communicate. Young and old alike benefit from a good service and feel isolated by a poor service. Given its importance it has become the fourth utility, after gas, electricity and water. It’s not going to go away, in fact it will become more and more important as we continue to extend the functionality.  It’s becoming obvious that super broadband will be replaced by ultra which in turn will also be replaced. The UK government is responsible for implementing the infrastructure required to support next generation broadband. They are failing.

Another roll out that’s in its embryonic stage is that of smart meters. Depending on who your energy supplier is, you will be offered smart meters that will be installed free for you. These new meters help you to monitor your energy. They should make consumers more confident in the accuracy of their bills and budget accordingly.

This weekend I shall be attending the SNP conference in Aberdeen. Away from the main arena, where debates rage, I shall be visiting many of the exhibitors including Barnardos, the Trussell Trust, Scots Care, WWF and about 60 others.

It’s an indication of the party’s strength that we will have over 3,000 delegates and many more day visitors. The media will be providing blanket coverage. Amongst all this the SNP will continue to acknowledge that we govern at the request of the citizens of Scotland and and the end of the day all the hyperbole goes for nothing if we lose the trust of the Scottish people. You put us there and you can remove us, we will never take that for granted and will continue to put the citizens of Scotland at the heart of our policies.