Glasgow & West Scotland

Scottish Labour MP triggers Lanarkshire council by-election

Hugh Gaffney Image copyright UK Parliament
Image caption MP Hugh Gaffney has given up his seat on North Lanarkshire Council

A Labour MP has resigned as a councillor, triggering a council by-election in north Lanarkshire.

Hugh Gaffney won Coatbridge, Chryston, and Bellshill from the SNP at the 2017 election.

A few weeks earlier he had been elected to the council, but he has now resigned that seat.

The by-election needs to be held within three months, and is likely to be fiercely contested by the Scottish National Party.

In 2017, the SNP won the most councillors in North Lanarkshire, but Scottish Labour remains in power as a minority administration.

In his resignation letter to the council's chief executive, Mr Gaffney said he had been privileged to serve the community he had been born and bred into.

He also highlighted his support for a council scheme which provides free meals 365 days a year to help overcome "school holiday hunger".

Last year Mr Gaffney apologised after making "deeply offensive and unacceptable" remarks about the LGBT community and Chinese people at a Burns Supper in Edinburgh.

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