The Scottish Government’s finance minister, Derek Mackay, has resigned just hours before he was due to deliver the Scottish budget, after he was exposed for sending a deluge of messages to a schoolboy he found online.
Mackay, Member of the Scottish Parliament — roughly equivalent to a state legislature in the United States — for Renfrewshire North & West and, until today, Cabinet Secretary for Finance, Economy, and Fair Work in Scottish National Party (SNP) leader Nicola Sturgeon’s devolved executive, bombarded the Glasgow schoolboy, 16, with messages on Instagram and Facebook after contacting him out of the blue.
Mackay persuaded the boy to give him his phone number and repeatedly fished for an invite to a rugby game, offered to pay to bring the boy to the Scottish Parliament for a Scottish Rugby Union event, and tried to get him out to deliver election leaflets with him.
The boy, who has a girlfriend and told Mackay, who left his wife and came out as homosexual in 2013, not to “try anything”, broke off contact with the SNP heavyweight after he wrote to him asking if “our chats are between us?” and said he was “really cute”.
“Just as long as you know , but you can delete that message lol” the anti-Brexit politician added.
The Scottish edition of The Sun acquired a full transcript of the exchanges and has posted them online.
— Derek Mackay MSP (@DerekMackaySNP) July 2, 2016
“[Mackay] first contacted me on Instagram. I had a look to see who he was and I noticed he was quite high profile so I was interested to see what he wanted,” the schoolboy explained to newspaper.
“I asked him if he was a politician and he said he was. He then connected with me on Facebook and started messaging me on there.
“He was sending me ‘waves’ to try to get my attention but at first I just ignored him.
“He was quite persistent and then when he asked me if I liked Scottish rugby, I said yes.
“I was just being polite because I don’t like just ignoring people.
“There was nothing bad about it. It seemed like he wasn’t looking for anything and just wanted a chat.
“He was asking about the rules of rugby and I told him it would be easier to explain it at a game, but I didn’t mean anything by it.
“He asked me if it was an invite but it clearly wasn’t.
“He then asked me if I would like to go to a game and asked for my mobile number. I gave him it because he was a politician and high profile and I thought, ‘Would that be bad? I wouldn’t mind it’.”
The schoolboy later became more worried about the politician’s interest in him, however, inventing a serious of elaborate excuses to avoid meeting up with him.
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“When I finally found out what was going on I was furious,” said the boy’s mother.
“A man like that is not supposed to say these sort of things to a boy — he looks like he wants something from my son. When I finally read the messages it was terrifying and made my stomach turn. My son’s friends, his girlfriend, can say he is cute — but not this strange man,” she added.
“When he asks my son if it’s OK to call him cute he was then waiting for an answer.
“He was looking for a positive response to see if he can take it further. But he didn’t get a reply and then he seems confused and worried about what he’s said.”
Accepting Mackay’s resignation, Scottish First Minister Nicola Sturgeon said he had “made a significant contribution to government, however he recognises that his behaviour has failed to meet the standards required.”
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— Breitbart London (@BreitbartLondon) January 28, 2020