Richard Leonard Named as New Scottish Labour leader

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    Today, Scottish Labour has named Richard Leonard as its new party leader, who takes the place of Kezia Dugdale.

    Party members were given a choice between Leonard, the left-wing Central Scotland MSP, and Anas Sarwar, the centrist.

    The vote had a 62.3 percent turnout, with Leonard having a 56.7 percent share and Sarwar with 43.3 percent.

    The election indicates a significant defeat for the centrists of the party, with a move that is aligning Scottish Labour more with Jeremy Corbyn, the Labour leader, as until now, Scottish Labour had been choosing centrist candidates.

    Last week, Alex Rowley, the Interim leader, left the role amid claims of misconduct.

    “I totally refute these allegations and will take all steps necessary to clear my name,” said Rowley.

    “These allegations must be properly and thoroughly investigated in line with our party’s procedures – and I will refer myself to the party so such an investigation can take place.

    “While that investigation is carried out, I will step aside as deputy leader, as well as interim leader, of the Scottish Labour party.”

    In August, Kezia Dugdale resigned as leader after assuming the role in August 2015.

    Dugdale said at that time that the party needed a candidate who can deliver “fresh energy, drive and a new mandate” to the party, and continued that her successor requires “space and time” in order to prepare for the next Scottish Parliament election in 2021.

    However, Dugdale has stirred up mixed views regarding her decision to take part in “I’m a Celebrity Get Me Out of Here,” the ITV reality show.

    Yesterday, Jenny Marra, the Scottish Labour MSP, tweeted: “Election to parliament is a privilege to serve and represent people. It’s not a shortcut to celebrity.”

    Kezia Dugdale has said that she will donate her MSP salary to charity while she is in the said programme.