HAVING heard that 70% of all PPE purchased by the UK Government is not fit for purpose and is going to landfill, can I suggest an appropriate course of action that would reimburse the taxpayer for the wanton waste of their hard-earned money?

We all remember the “fast track” approval process for their Tory friends, a company linked to our own Baroness Michelle Mone being only but one.

As a retired banker with experience in the international payments market, can I suggest an appropriate remedy to Mr Sunak? It is called “chargeback”.

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If I bought the PPE on a credit card I would be charging the transaction back as “not as described” under Visa and MasterCard payment rules.

Will the UK Government be doing so? No chance!!

Compared to the above incompetence and possible fraudulent activity, the Scottish Government having two ferries late and over budget, while regrettable, is but small beer.

Ian Stewart
Uig, Isle of Skye

WHEN I wrote earlier about the Progress to Yes event it was not to suggest there was any vendetta against ISP or Alba, just to point out that the definitions which were at the bottom of the article did in fact preclude us joining, as it is known we do not agree with the SNP/Green idea of what is transphobic.

The Independence for Scotland Party supports, among other things, gender-critical views, going against the gender ideology of the SNP and Greens. We did not make gender ideology centre stage, the SNP and Greens did.

The Progress to Yes code of conduct bans behaviours like homophobia, transphobia and misogyny, being “the definitions of those terms as adopted by the political parties active in the Yes movement”. This means, of course, that all parties must have the same definitions. As we don’t all have the same definitions, by default that puts the SNP and Greens on one side and ISP and Alba on the other.

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And if any doubt remained, neither ISP nor Alba were invited to the Progress to Yes summit, and Tony Guigliano, SNP policy convenor, said in January that Alba would not be welcome to the SNP/Green/Believe in Scotland group working towards indyref2.

The ISP was formed due to SNP inaction on independence. Since then, a clear division has also developed over a national energy company, progressive economics and gender ideology. Women (“adult human females”) were thrown under the bus by the SNP mantra “transwomen are women”, and the SNP and Greens continue to attack or belittle gender-critical women.

The SNP is bewitched by gender identity ideology. It relies on another mantra “wheesht for indy” to silence critics. This will not win over soft Nos. The opposite is true. Women who previously supported independence now do not, because of gender reform. It is not going to win over soft Nos that the nationalist government tabled gender reform legislation before referendum legislation. You might think the SNP’s raison d’etre was gender reform, not independence.

It is easy to blame the new parties for the uncomfortable truth that support for independence sadly has not increased in eight years. ISP exists for a reason. And failing to admit there is anything wrong with the current government, despite numerous questions over the NHS, ferries, railways and the land-grab ongoing on the SNP/Green watch will not win over soft Nos either.

Julia Pannell
Friockheim, Tayside

I WONDER if Jim Butchart (Letters, June 11) is aware that most people in Golspie want the statue of the Mannie to remain on top of Ben Bhraggie? They have good reason to do so because when people see him they are inclined to stop and ask who he is and why he is there. In this way the story of what happened in Sutherland can be told. If you remove him, people are more likely to pass by and remain unaware of the history.

Personally I’d like to see an interpretative centre in Golspie where people could find out more of that history, but it should explain both sides of the story and not concentrate exclusively on the highly emotional version with which many of us are familiar. The rosy picture of Sutherland, pre-Clearance, as a land of plenty inhabited by healthy, happy people depicted by the Rev Donald Sage does not ring true, so it is not surprising that incoming “improvers” thought they could do better for local people but, above all, for themselves.

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It is easy to criticise that the policy of moving people from the interior to the coast where they could become crofter fishermen was misguided for several practical reasons even though the Sutherland estate did build some harbours and Helmsdale, at least for a time, enjoyed some modest success.

However, in the end the overall verdict is likely to be hostile to the Sutherlands because the people were moved against their will and sometimes with real cruelty. And for some it meant being shipped overseas in grim conditions to begin a new life which for a time at least was certain to be very harsh indeed.

Andrew M Fraser