Taxpayers pay the price for Mundell’s astronomical spending spree

The Scotland Office, the UK government’s department in Scotland, is facing serious questions after new analysis revealed an astronomical surge in spending under Secretary of State David Mundell.

Transparency and Freedom of Information releases reveal that spending has risen staggeringly, with no discernible benefit for the taxpayer.

A taxpayer-funded Unionist campaign

When SNP MP Deidre Brock challenged Mundell on the purpose of the department’s increased spending, the Secretary of State replied that its role was to demonstrate how “people benefit from being part of the United Kingdom.”

Struggling to make the case for the Union by conventional means, the Tory Government are now throwing huge amounts of taxpayer’s cash at a propaganda operation from London.

Spending on the Scotland Office communication team has risen 555% from ÂŁ108,439 in 2010/11 to ÂŁ710,337 in 2017/18 – at the same time that the Tory government has imposed austerity cuts on Scotland’s budget.

‘It’s time for an urgent review’

Calling for a review of the Scotland Office, Deidre Brock MP said:

“David Mundell needs to put the credit card away – and urgently explain why there has been such an astronomical and indefensible increase in taxpayers’ cash being frittered away by his zombie department.

“The Tory Scottish Secretary has presided over soaring levels of public spending, with no discernible benefit to the taxpayer – whose money is being wasted away on what appears to be a Tory propaganda campaign.

“Shockingly, these huge increases in spending on foreign trips, spin doctors, social media advertising, and posh drinks receptions, have come at the same time the Tory government has imposed austerity cuts on Scotland’s budget.

“It’s time for an urgent review into why expenditure keeps going up when the responsibilities of the Scotland Office are in terminal decline.

“With David Mundell on his way out, consideration must also be given to the future of the department, which has been completely ineffective at advocating Scotland’s opposition to Tory plans for Brexit, austerity cuts and power grabs, and has ignored our interests on vital issues such as devolving immigration powers to meet Scotland’s specific needs.

“With Westminster failing, it’s clearer than ever that the only way to properly protect Scotland’s interests is by becoming an independent European country.”

Increased spending on Mundell’s foreign visits

David Mundell’s overseas travel spending has increased by 88% – meanwhile Foreign Office support for Scotland’s democratically elected First Minister has been withdrawn on political grounds.

Whilst a Secretary of State for Scotland splashes taxpayers’ cash on promoting the Union, Nicola Sturgeon’s efforts to properly represent Scotland’s interests abroad have been undermined.

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