Shamed MSP to find out if he will be suspended for a month

27 June 2018, 06:41

mark mcdonald

MSPs are expected to vote on Wednesday to temporarily ban former minister Mark McDonald from Holyrood after an investigation concluded he sexually harassed a woman.

The Aberdeen Donside member faces a month-long suspension without pay.

The sanction was recommended by Holyrood's Standards Committee after he was found to have twice breached the code of conduct for MSPs.

Mr McDonald, who sits as an independent MSP, said he accepted the findings of the Commissioner for Ethical Standards in Public Life in relation to the two breaches and would abide by the outcome of the full parliamentary vote.

He stood down as childcare minister after allegations first emerged about his behaviour in November last year and later quit the SNP after an internal investigation.

The commissioner was asked by the committee to investigate Mr McDonald's conduct after SNP MSP James Dornan made an official complaint in March.

The investigation concluded Mr McDonald breached the code of conduct for MSPs by failing to treat one woman with respect and his conduct towards her "involved sexual harassment".

It also found he had failed to treat a second witness with respect "in relation to a financial matter".

However the commissioner found no evidence to support some of the allegations made.

Mr McDonald said the first breach related to the same matter he had resigned and apologised over - the sending of an inappropriate social media message to a female member of staff employed by another MSP.

But he said he did not accept the conclusion the message had constituted sexual harassment.

He said the commissioner's report had "disproved or disregarded the overwhelming majority of Mr Dornan's complaint".