Margaret Ferrier makes first Commons appearance since positive Covid journey
Margaret Ferrier has made her first Commons appearance since being dropped by the SNP over her coronavirus scandal.
The Rutherglen and Hamilton West MP today asked a question about Hong Kong after not speaking for more than a month.
Her appearance is a clear sign she will continue despite the backlash over her breaching of the rules.
Speaking via video-link, she asked: "In October this year the Government confirmed that a new immigration route for BNO's from Hong Kong will open in January.
"Unfortunately under the current plans BNO's will still be subject to an extensive health surcharge.
”Will the Government considering abolishing the health surcharge for British nationals overseas applicants?”
Responding the Government insisted they had offered a generous package to those who needed it.
Ms Ferrier has been due to speak about Brexit, only to fail to be called due to time constraints.
Scottish Tory MSP Graham Simpson claimed her appearance showed she was about money rather than public service.
He said: “Margaret Ferrier continues to display a stunning lack of self-awareness.
“It is astonishing that she cannot see what she did wrong by severely undermining key public health messages through her actions.
“Everyone who is continuing to make tough sacrifices to fight this virus will think she has some brass neck carrying on her duties in Parliament.
“It is clear that she continues to value her salary more than doing the right thing and resigning.”
Last month the shamed MP admitted to travelling from Glasgow to Westminster while awaiting a Covid-19 test result, and making the return trip to Scotland when she knew she had the virus.
Ms Ferrier has insisted the incident was a “blip” and claimed the virus made her act out of character.
She said: "This has been an awful experience, but I'll keep fighting for my constituents because that's who I am."
At 7:15pm on the night of the incident, Ms Ferrrier had stood up in the Commons and paid tribute to the hard work of NHS and care workers during the pandemic.
Getting a positive test later that evening, she then got a train home from London anyway despite knowing she had coronavirus.
The independent MP says that she has received support locally in the wake of the incident and has "owned up and apologised profusely".
Since ending self-isolation, Ms Ferrier has voted by proxy, with suspended Plaid Cymru MP Jonathan Edward casting a vote on her behalf.
Labour leader Sir Keir Starmer and Scottish Labour leader Richard Leonard have been among those pushing for Ms Ferrier – who beat Labour’s Ged Killen for the seat last year – to go.
First Minister Nicola Sturgeon and the SNP Westminster leader Ian Blackford also both called on Ms Ferrier to stand down over the incident.
The disgraced MP responded, claiming she was “hung out to dry” by the party after admitting her mistake.
She had avoided police action over the Covid-19 trip, with the Metropolitan Police saying regulations under which Ms Ferrier could have been punished were not in effect when she travelled.
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