As-it-happened: First Minister's Questions on Thursday, 23 May, 2013

Key points

  • First Minister Alex Salmond was in the Scottish Parliament to answer questions from opposition party leaders and backbenchers.
  • The case of Maureen Fleming and her fight for a cancer drug not readily available was highlighted at FMQs for a second week on the run.
  • Scottish Tory leader Ruth Davidson homed in on the independence issue and asked about the Scottish government's paper on the economy.

Live text


  • Sandy Murray 
  • Emma Ailes 
  • Deirdre Kelly 

Last updated 23 May 2013


Hello and welcome to our video and text coverage of First Minister's Questions. Alex Salmond is due in the chamber at 12 noon when he will answer questions from opposition leaders and backbenchers.


Cabinet ministers are currently answering general questions from MSPs.


Presiding Officer Tricia Marwick urges both backbenchers and cabinet ministers to keep their questions and answers brief so that the full schedule can be completed.


Brian Taylor, Political editor, Scotland

"It opens a little like a tea towel. You know, the one that lists all those many inventions by Scots - from television to penicillin and points in between..... Read more from my blog."


If you want to follow the debate on social media, use #FMQ or #FMQs


Elaine Smith wants to know what action is being taken to assess the health implications of waste incineration. Minister for Public Health, Michael Matheson, says damage to health is small, but he added further studies were taking place.


@MREVETT FMQs# must be about the this week's advisory paper on the economy from Scottish Government?


Corporation tax would be an important lever in an independent Scotland, Finance Secretary John Swinney tells the chamber. He is responding to a question from Neil Bibby who wants to know what level the Scottish government plans to reduce corporation tax to in the event of Scotland becoming independent.


Flowers Flowers have been left at the scene of the killing in Woolwich

First Minister starts with a condemnation of the Woolwich attack. Johann Lamont agrees.