Nicola Sturgeon becomes Scotland’s First Minister
SNP politician Nicola Sturgeon has formally succeeded Alex Salmond as Scotland’s First Minister.
Ms Sturgeon, who served until now as the Scottish National Party’s deputy leader – last month confirmed her intention to stand to replace Alex Salmond as leader of the party.
Mr Salmond announced he would step down as SNP leader in September, following the Yes campaign’s defeat in the Scottish Independence referendum.
The MSP for Glasgow Southside was the only candidate to replace Mr Salmond, and was formally nominated in Hollyrood today, becoming the country’s first ever female First Minister.
Ms Sturgeon has been a strong proponent of equal marriage in Scotland, leading the party’s commitment to introduce it in 2012 when she said: “We are committed to a Scotland that is fair and equal and that is why we intend to proceed with plans to allow same-sex marriage and religious ceremonies for civil partnerships – we believe that this is the right thing to do.”
She said: “A first minister who will always have big ambitions for this country and a first minister who, day in and day out, will apply herself to the job of protecting our public services, supporting our businesses and tackling inequality.
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“I am ready and willing to take on these responsibilities. There is a job to be done – a big job to be done. I look forward now to getting on and doing it.”
Announcing her candidacy previously, she said: “To be the first minister of my country, especially at this exciting and optimistic time, would be both a great honour – without doubt, the greatest honour – and an immense responsibility.
“I am putting myself forward for two simple reasons: I want to serve my party and my country. And I believe I am the best person for the job.
“I also hope that my candidacy, should it succeed, will send a strong message to every girl and young woman in Scotland – no matter your background or what you want to achieve in life, in Scotland in 2014 there is no glass ceiling on ambition.”