Referendum Current Affairs
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The Scots have given a clear mandate to stay with the United Kingdom along with England, Wales and Northern Ireland in a historic referendum. There were 55% votes which went in favour of the No-campaigners who said a ‘no’ to independence and only 44% votes which were in favour of the ‘yes’ campaign. The British PM David Cameron welcomed the decision of Scotland which came with a clear mandate. He also expressed his intentions and said that the moment calls for unprecedented campaign and changes in the way UK will have to be governed, keeping in mind the wishes of everybody.
He assured the pro-independence supporters that UK government had always stood for devolution in the past and will consider a newer and fairer settlement for Scotland. First Minister of Scotland Alex Salmond in a televised statement accepted the defeat. US President Obama has also welcomed the outcome for US always wants UK to remain a strong and effective partner. NATO Secretary General Anders Fogh Rasmussen also greeted the news with relief and delight. Alistair Darling, the Labour lawmaker who led the ‘no-campaign hailed the decision and said that the message of the Scots comes clear that they have voted for unity over separation and positive change over needless partition. He reiterated the commitment by the Westminster parties of more powers to Scotland will be duly kept and honoured. The latter had come in the wake of the growing majority of votes in favour of Yes campaign during opinion polls. The Westminster parties agreed and offered more powers to the devolved government of Scotland since 1999. They promised more powers over taxes, social spending and welfare. The problem which is only half-solved is yet to surface when the process of devolution of powers will hit the tables of rebellious Parliament in a time-defined schedule.
The demands for independence in Scotland are getting louder as a recent poll suggested that chances that it gets separate from United Kingdom have shown an upwards trend. There are more votes with the ‘yes’ tag than otherwise. Such polls and results make a lot of significance in shaping public opinion especially when the referendum for independence is just 2 weeks away. A YouGov Poll conducted for The Sunday Times apparently showed 51% ‘yes’ votes and 49% ‘no’ votes. Such numbers were concluded after asking 1084 voters and singling out the undecided ones.
Apart from all the major political ramifications, the poll also suggest that the support base for the “Better Together” campaign had faded at a surprisingly great speed. It also meant that the “yes” campaign had subtly gained inroads to many corners across the length and breadth of the Scottish society.
The government at Scotland which has led the ‘yes’ campaign, has termed the referendum a ‘once in a generation’ chance to empower oneself to take the decisions affecting Scots. They are painting brighter pictures for an independent Scotland which can also be decisive.
Also, the ‘Better Together” calls for the status quo to be maintained as it will in the interests of Scotland which can be assured of security and armed might of UK. David Cameron, has come out in the open asking the Scottish people to be prudent in their choices as it will decide their future life opportunities for years to come. He firmly stated that there will be no-looking back once the referendum’s results pour out.
The impending divorce has started to show its effect on the falling currency values. Monday saw a sharp fall in the value of the pound. The Scottish government has expressed its willingness to continue with the British pound as the currency which is in the union with rest of the United Kingdom. The latter has found no support from any of the parties in Europe.