A petition to recall Coronavirus (COVID-19) rule-breaking British member of parliament (MP) Margaret Ferrier has passed the required number of signatures needed for a bye-election to be called.
A total of 11,896 voters validly signed Scotland’s first recall petition.
It means a bye-election can now take place in in her constituency near Glasgow in Scotland, though a date is yet to be determined.
In 2020, the MP was found to have damaged the reputation of the House of Commons and put people at risk after taking part in a debate and travelling by train while suffering from COVID-19.
Originally elected as an Scottish National Party (SNP) MP, she had the whip removed when her COVID rule-breaking came to light.
She had already been ordered to complete a 270-hour community payback order by a court after admitting culpably and recklessly exposing the public “to the risk of infection, illness, and death” as a result of her behaviour.
Any contest will be keenly fought by Labour and the SNP.
Voting in the recall petition closed on Monday after six weeks.
South Lanarkshire Council administered the petition and tweeted: “Result of the petition to remove Rutherglen and Hamilton West MP Margaret Ferrier.
“Petition successful. Total electorate 81,123. Number of electors who validly signed the petition 11,896.
“Percentage of electors who validly signed the petition 14.66 per cent. 37 returns were rejected.”
In June, Ferrier was suspended from the House of Commons for 30 days, beginning the recall petition process.
The 62-year-old has resisted calls to resign from her seat and urged her constituents not to sign the petition.
First Minister and SNP leader Humza Yousaf has said the circumstances in Rutherglen and Hamilton West are “challenging” for his party, but it nevertheless has “solid support.”
Scottish Labour deputy leader Dame Jackie Baillie said her party is confident of a victory in a by-election, saying a defeat would lead to deep “soul searching.”
She described the seat as an “important milestone” towards Labour’s aim of forming a majority government in the general election.
In 2019, Ferrier won the constituency with a majority of 5,230, taking 44.2 per cent of the vote. (PA Media/dpa/NAN)