INVERCLYDE MSP Stuart McMillan has called for ‘change at the top’ at Government-owned shipyard Ferguson Marine.
The SNP MSP was commenting after the yard was ruled out of contention for a huge CalMac ferry order.
He said: “Today, I indicated that I now feel there should be a change of management at Ferguson Marine. This was not an easy thing to do.
“I am not just the local MSP. I grew up in Port Glasgow and my father worked in the yard before he passed away. I am a huge supporter of the workforce and the yard and it’s future is bigger than one person.
“The Scottish Government absolutely did the right thing when it stepped in to rescue the yard in 2019 and took it into public ownership. A turnaround director was then appointed and the yard has been able to move forward as a result. This is exactly what was needed.
“Over the past two years, particularly the last few months, I have had discussions with various people involved with the yard and engaged with stakeholders. I have heard their concerns first hand and have regular dialogue with both the Finance Secretary and Transport Minister.
“Instead of howling in the wind on the outside, I work and engage constructively with everyone involved.
“I know that when the Finance and Economy secretary recently visited the yard, she –- much like myself -– recognised the importance of spending a good period of time with the workforce as well as the management team. She spent time listening to the people, on the shop floor, building these vessels.
“My focus as always has been on securing a future for the yard, protecting the workforce and getting the two current vessels being built, finished.
“Yesterday’s announcement has invited criticism of the yard’s management, some justified and some unjustified. I do however think questions must be asked about whether or not Ferguson’s should even be bidding for this type of work at present – given the focus should be on completing the MV Glen Sannox and Hull 802. For this reason, I think the time has come for a change at the top.
“I take absolutely no pleasure in making this call, but my loyalty first and foremost is to the yard and the workforce.”