Nicola Sturgeon was the longest serving premier in Scotland’s history, as well as the first woman to lead the Scottish National Party pro-independence (SNP) and to be simultaneously prime minister. He had headed Edinburgh local government since September 2014.
The Telegraph in 2015 called Sturgeon “pointed and ruthless”, but also “able to inspire people”. She is known for making extensive use of social media, especially Twitter, which she exploits to get her political message across. She often snapped selfies with fellow citizens: in the photo, during the 2021 election campaign, he is in a primary school in Glasgow.
The Scottish premier’s tweet in 2021: “Europe, we’ll be back soon”
In 2014 Sturgeon, who took over from her mentor Alex Salmond and has always been a pro-independence activist, became prime minister just after the Scottish electorate had chosen to remain in the United Kingdom (55% of voters voted against independence in the runoff). In the photo she is together with Scottish actor Alan Cumming, Hollywood star, during the electoral campaign for the yes to secession, in September 2014.
Scotland at the crossroads, dreaming of independence
Despite the defeat, Sturgeon decided to lead the party in that difficult moment: it is “the greatest privilege of my life”, he said at the time. In the photo you are with US House Speaker Nancy Pelosi during a meeting on Capitol Hill (Washington) to discuss the Russian invasion of Ukraine.
Born on 19 July 1970 in Irvine, North Ayrshire, she grew up during what she described as “the dark days of the Thatcher era”. She joined the SNP at the age of 16 during the campaign for nuclear disarmament, she studied law at theUniversity of Glasgow before embarking on a career as a lawyer. His ambition, however, has always been to do politics. Pictured is in Glasgow for a rally in George Square, where thousands gathered in 2019 to call for a second independence referendum.
In 1992, the year of his graduation, he became the youngest candidate Scottish general election, but entered full-time politics in 1999 with the election of the new Scottish Parliament. In the photo, a moment of the electoral campaign for the 2021 parliamentary elections.
His first major challenge to government came as deputy prime minister and health secretary, when swine flu was declared a pandemic. She then took on the role of “Yes Minister“, overseeing the planning of the independence referendum.
Convinced pro-European, after the Brexit and with 62% of Scots wanting to stay in the EU, Sturgeon raised the possibility of not granting parliamentary assent to London’s will. His SNP party asserted itself in local elections in May 2021, but fell short of an absolute majority. In her photo, Sturgeon at her chair with husband Peter Murrell.
Sturgeon met Murrell as early as 1988, when she was 18, at an SNP youth camp. In 2003 they made their relationship public, and in 2010 they got married. Since 1999 Murrell has served as party administrator.
Sturgeon’s strategy of legally and constitutionally obtaining a new popular vote on independence – which the central government in London, the last instance in the matter, refuses to grant – failed however. The appeal, which finally reached the Supreme Court, was rejected in recent months, effectively removing for now any concrete prospect of referendum rematchdespite divisions over Brexit.
The Supreme Court rejects the appeal on the referendum in Scotland