Rob Gibson MSP has responded to Lib-Dem claims that he mis-used party funds to pay for advertising for Highland Council SNP candidates (see separate article).
He says: "This really is desperate stuff by the Lib Dems. These adverts were for parliamentary purposes and were printed before the Highland Council's self-imposed 'purdah' period, before the short campaign formally began, and indeed before Mr MacLeod and Mrs Ross had been nominated as candidates.
"Any adverts placed following the submission of nomination forms were paid for by the SNP. As far as I am concerned, proper procedures were followed."
The SNP say the adverts were booked in February, and appeared in papers in Caithness, Sutherland and Ross before any campaign for the council began. The adverts feature all of Rob Gibson's staff, only two of whom are currently seeking election.
“As soon as the Council's self-imposed 'purdah' period commenced, all parliamentary adverts featuring staff who had intentions of running for election were removed. The SNP then ran its own advertising campaign, paid for by the SNP. This was all in accordance with parliamentary regulations.”