Scotland could ditch monarchy within five years of independence

Humza Yousaf has declared that Scotland could ditch the monarchy within five years of independence. The SNP leadership candidate insisted Scots should not be “shy” about the debate on the Royal Family and said he is “very clear” he is a Republican.

Mr Yousaf told The National: “Let’s also talk about things like monarchy.

“I don’t know why we should be shy about that, I don’t think we should be.

“I’ve been very clear, I’m a Republican. That’s never been anything I’ve hidden.

“And it’s not an immediate priority, I accept that.

“But when we’re independent, we’ll need to get our central bank up and running, we’ll need to transition to a new Scottish currency, which I’ve been keen to do as quickly as possible.

“But let’s absolutely within the first five years consider whether or not we should move away from having a monarchy into an elected head of state.”

Pressed on Prince Edward being given the Duke of Edinburgh title, Mr Yousaf added: “Look, royals have every opportunity to do as they wish.

“But I consider myself first and foremost, a citizen, not a subject.

“And as I say, it’s not the immediate priority. I do accept that.

“But I do think it’s important that within the first few years of independence that we have that discussion.”

It comes as a damning poll suggests the majority of Scots believe the candidates to replace Nicola Sturgeon would be worse than the outgoing First Minister.

The poll, of 1,002 Scots between March 9 and 13, was released on Monday in the hours after voting for the next SNP leader opened.

In the survey by YouGov for Sky News, participants were asked if Mr Yousaf, Kate Forbes and Ash Regan would be better than their predecessor.

Mr Yousaf came last with just six percent saying he would be better than Ms Sturgeon and 46 percent saying he would be worse.

Ms Forbes was rated best, with 17 percent saying she would be better than Ms Sturgeon, but 33 percent saying she would be worse.

Ms Regan was second, with eight percent thinking she would be a better and 38 percent who said she would be worse.

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