A NUMBER of people have lodged complaints with STV regarding the complete absence of coverage of the Chain of Freedom event, which involved thousands of people from all over Scotland and beyond and which was organised by a small group of volunteers.

Their response says they are satisfied that their editorial processes comply with the terms of the Ofcom code regarding impartiality. The Ofcom guidance notes that cover this area refer to “due impartiality” and “undue prominence” and these are the areas within the rules that they appear to say they comply with. However, the concepts of impartiality and balance could easily have been satisfied by simply reporting on the event AND by asking a range of people on the street what they think. This is the normal way of dealing with such matters, is it not? We see it all the time; when anything that that can be seen to be even remotely connected to politics is presented, it is followed by asking people what they think.

READ MORE: Chain of Freedom felt like the old days of Yes campaigning

By doing nothing in this instance, they have actually chosen to hide behind rules that they could have legally circumvented. Why would they choose to hide behind the rules rather than turn the coverage into a balanced and impartial story? And this is exactly why people have lost confidence in their organisation (and the BBC) because by doing nothing, they are seen by thousands of people to be “favouring the other side”.

People have a right to expect a broadcaster to let them know what’s happening in their own country. Nothing more; nothing less.

Dennis White

HUMZA Yousaf’s vast spending spree announced at the end of the SNP conference came as a bit of a surprise to everyone. The devil, as always, is in the detail and it remains to be seen how this multimillion-pound windfall is to be paid for.

Perhaps the previous First Minister left behind a large war chest of cash in the basement of Bute House. Persons of a cynical nature might link this announcement to the coming General Election. It is strange that only a few weeks ago forecasts of a £1 billion Scottish budget shortfall featured in the news.

READ MORE: Cosla says there is 'no agreement' for council tax freeze

I only wish the £300 million for the NHS could have been discovered a bit sooner. Those on NHS waiting lists could have been already treated and able to live their lives in more normal fashion. However, simply throwing endless amounts of money at the Scottish heath service will not solve the basic problem that we do not have or train enough staff.

The conference cheered as the First Minister announced the Scottish Government’s intention to issue bonds as an alternative to Treasury borrowing. Those cheering should be aware this is simply another means to borrow money which will have to be paid back at some point – with interest and probably by their children and grandchildren.

Using Treasury financial instruments, the First Minister said the Scottish Government would invest up to £500 million to “anchor a new supply chain industry for the offshore wind sector”. I have to confess I have no idea what that means in real terms. I sincerely hope it does not simply mean subsidising overseas-based companies to provide temporary jobs in an industry solely designed to help extract power from Scotland and ship it south of the Border to be sold at prices lower than that available to Scottish consumers.

READ MORE: SNP conference: Humza Yousaf announces freeze on council tax

The council tax freeze, which came as a real surprise to everyone including Cosla, will be a tough challenge to meet. The freeze will cost in excess of £100m and the decision not to raise the higher bands will mean a loss of potentially £176m from council budgets.

It remains to be seen how all this will add up and how the spend, spend, spend will be eventually be paid for.

Iain Wilson

I WISH to add to the very good comments made by David Howie in Tuesday’s National, responding to the column by Alba’s Chris McEleny on Monday (It’s crucial for independence that the SNP change course). The Alba Party’s miniscule popularity in Scotland will not change any time soon and one of the main reasons for this intransigence is because their leader, Alex Salmond, is the “elephant in the room”. The party’s only chance of possibly changing its poor popularity rating in Scotland is by replacing him with a more dynamic, forward-thinking leader. Even that radical change may not be enough to sway indy-supporting voters away from the well-established Scottish National Party, even though it has its own problems to resolve at the current time before the serious election business starts to gather pace next year.

Bernie Japs

I WATCHED a video communication on Scottish independence recently. The presenter was curious about the current status of the English Votes for English Laws legislation. After a quick internet check, it transpires that EVEL was in fact scrapped. It has ceased to be, gone to the great shredder in the sky, pushing up the daises even! Such a fuss was made of EVEL post-2014 referendum, it would have been nice of Westminster to tell us! I call that cowardice, which is in plentiful supply in Westminster I’m afraid. What else has been secretly guided through the shredder?

WJ Graham
East Kilbride

AS part of the independence strategy, the SNP group should refuse to attend the Westminster parliament (as elected MPs from Ireland have done for years). The MPs should conduct all their constituency business from constituency offices, and boycott attending Westminster. Independence is about leaving the UK, so the SNP should leave Westminster since Westminster ignores Scottish democracy.

Rab Doig