23 May 2016

Tory priorities all wrong as Trident price tag rockets

The SNP has launched a renewed attack on the Tories’ obsession with nuclear weapons after UK government’s intention to press ahead with renewal of Trident, in spite of spiralling costs, was confirmed in the Queen’s Speech.

Earlier this week new figures from CND revealed that replacing Trident will end up costing taxpayers at least £205 billion. Their report suggested this figure might even underestimate the final costs, given that so many Ministry of Defence projects have run vastly over budget in recent years.

Despite costs running out of control, Prime Minister David Cameron remains hell-bent on replacing the UK’s nuclear weapons system – which will continue to be based on the Clyde just 30 miles from Scotland’s largest population centre.

Local MSP Stewart Stevenson has slammed the Tory Prime Minister’s “stubborn and senseless” pursuit of Trident replacement. The SNP MSP has joined calls warning that spiralling costs risk putting vital services at risk under a government at Westminster wedded to austerity.

Commenting, Stewart Stevenson MSP said:

“Two weeks ago the people of Scotland again elected a parliament with a clear majority of MSPs opposed to the obscenity of nuclear weapons in Scotland.

“On that basis alone it would be a democratic outrage for the UK Government to press ahead with their stubborn and senseless plans to renew Trident.

“And with new analysis showing the cost of replacing Trident skyrocketing to over £200 billion it becomes increasingly clear that the Tories have lost all sense of priority – persevering with an austerity agenda which is damaging the lives of disabled and vulnerable people in our communities, while throwing caution to the wind on weapons of mass destruction.

“Trident serves no military purpose. It is a status symbol which just gets more and more expensive, while the Tories keep dodging a democratic vote on its future.

“As the price tag for Trident shoots up, that means other budgets get squeezed – money that could be better spent on schools, our NHS, building affordable homes and vital public services.

“Worryingly, it seems there’s no limit on what David Cameron is willing to spend on a new generation of nuclear missiles – but the boys and their toys approach to governance over such a dangerous vanity project means that Tory cuts will have to fall elsewhere.”

Stewart Stevenson
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