First Minister Nicola Sturgeon today appointed a new, refreshed Scottish Government Cabinet.
Thankfully, at a critical stage in the planned reform of crofting law, she did not shuffle Fergus Ewing MSP away from his post as Cabinet Secretary for Rural Economy with responsibility for crofting. Connectivity has however been moved away from his portfolio and is now with Michael Matheson as Cabinet Secretary for Transport, Infrastructure and Connectivity. Thus Fergus Ewing’s title changes from Cabinet Secretary for the Rural Economy and Connectivity to Cabinet Secretary for Rural Economy.
Fergus Ewing was in post during the difficult times surrounding the common grazings crisis. He has had many meetings with crofting stakeholder groups regarding the need for crofting law reform arising primarily from matters identified in ‘The Crofting Law Sump Report‘. His recent announcement about a two phased approach to crofting law reform was widely welcomed. He understands the problems at hand and what needs to be done to resolve them. It would have been a huge mistake not to allow him to oversee the introduction of the next crofting reform bill.