Call For SFA To Set Up Abuse Inquiry

11 December 2016, 13:24

The Scottish Football Association (SFA) should set up an independent inquiry into allegations of historical child abuse, the Deputy First Minister has said.

John Swinney said the inquiry should be conducted by an ''authoritative, independent, respected figure'' who could consider the issue ''without fear or favour''.

Police Scotland is investigating allegations of historical sexual abuse at Scottish football clubs.

Mr Swinney told BBC Scotland's Sunday Politics Scotland programme that he would not extend the Scottish Government's historical abuse inquiry - looking into the treatment of children who were in institutional care - to include football.

''Survivor groups tell me they want it to proceed, they don't want the timescale extended which would be an inevitable consequence of extending into other sectors, whether that's football or any other sector,'' he said.

''I think first and foremost the police have got to be given the time and space to address any complaints that are made by any individual who has had the awful experience of being affected by child abuse within football.''

He added that ''the SFA has got to consider setting up an independent inquiry that will satisfy that these issues are being properly and fully addressed by everyone involved in football''.

A spokesman for the SFA said the organisation is ``open-minded to an independent review but with the right scope and terms of reference''.