- MSP Alex Rowley briefly served as interim leader after Kezia Dugdale resigned
- He was suspended following allegations that he had sent abusive text messages
- An investigation panel has discharged the case after Mr Rowley denied the claims
The Scottish Labour Party deputy leader has resigned after allegations of harassment were made against him.
Fife MSP Alex Rowley, who briefly served as interim leader of the party after Kezia Dugdale stepped down, releasing a statement today confirming he does not intend to stay on in the role.
He was suspended from the post following allegations that he had sent abusive text messages to a former partner. He rejected the claims and said an investigation panel had discharged the case.
Fife MSP Alex Rowley, who briefly served as interim leader of the party after Kezia Dugdale stepped down, releasing a statement today confirming he does not intend to stay on in the role
The statement said: ‘I am pleased the panel has discharged the case which I referred to them but I am disappointed that they were unable fully to investigate – and I to have the opportunity to answer – the allegations, which relate to the acrimonious end to a relationship nearly five years ago.
‘This means the only opportunity to do so would have been through the media and I am not prepared to cause that distress to my family.
‘I am in politics to fight for social, political and economic change to improve the lives of working people. I will continue that work as a Labour MSP for the region of Mid Scotland and Fife.’
Scottish Labour leader Richard Leonard said: ‘Following on from Alex Rowley’s decision to resign from the position of deputy leader of the Scottish Labour Party, I have asked Lesley Laird to assume the position on an interim basis.
‘I have spoken to Alex and for the sake of his family he has decided to step down from this important role.
‘He informs me that it is a decision he made some time ago.
Kezia Dugdale stepped down in August and later revealed she was going to be a contestant on this year’s I’m A Celebrity…Get Me Out Of Here!
‘He is a loyal and experienced member of the Labour group in the Scottish Parliament and will continue to play a part in rebuilding the Labour Party in Scotland.’
Mr Leonard was voted in as the new leader of the Scottish Labour in November, on the very same day news broke that Ms Dugdale was a contestant on this year’s I’m A Celebrity…Get Me Out Of Here!
She returned to Scotland to face the wrath of her new boss, who decided to discipline her with a written warning.
After the meeting Labour issued a statement, with Mr Kelly confirming: ‘Today Kezia Dugdale MSP was interviewed by the Scottish Labour parliamentary group executive regarding her unauthorised absence from Parliament for three weeks.
‘Following a discussion between Richard Leonard, Kezia Dugdale, and the group executive, it has been decided that the group will reprimand Ms Dugdale by way of written warning.
‘She will not face further action.’