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WHAT DO THEY THINK OF HIM SO FAR? AFTER 100 DAYS OF SNP RULE.. Critics say Salmond broke his promises.

Byline: By MARK SMITH

LABOUR and the SNP clashed yesterday as Alex Salmond prepared to mark his first 100 days in power.

Opponents accused the Nationalists of failing to deliver election promises.

Labour claimed the SNP made various promises in a document published in March setting out goals for their first 100 days, but had delivered on only one in three of their pledges.

They also promised five Bills but delivered just one, on independence, according to Labour chiefs. Labour deputy leader Cathy Jamieson said: "As the main opposition party in the Scottish Parliament the public is looking to Labour to ensure that the SNP Executive is properly scrutinised and held to account.

"Where there is agreement we will back, but when the SNP fail to deliver or lose sight of Scotland's priorities, we will oppose."

And former health minister Andy Kerr said: "At first glance it would seem the SNP have had an effective first 100 days. However, if you scratch the surface you see that they have failed to deliver on their promises." He went on: "There is work needed in health, education, justice and the economy and that is where the SNP's efforts should be focused."

A Labour document claims 20 promises have been delivered by the SNP, 10 have been partly delivered, but 38 have not been delivered.

The failed pledges includes "big manifesto promises" like replacing student loans with grants and employing 1,000 extra police,.

The dossier claimed the four missing Bills included one to phase out prescription charges, abolish Forth and Tay bridge tolls and a one to improve criminal justice.

Lib Dems also attacked the SNP, accusing them of "one of the biggest spin operations since Torvill and Dean". Lib Dem leader Nicol Stephen said: "In 100 days, the SNP managed to produce their white paper. But they have failed to get the basics right."

The SNP set out a list of 80 actions and announcements from its first 100 days and said a fuller document would be published today.

A spokesman for the First Minister said: "We have hit the ground running by getting on with the job of delivering the SNP programme."

Action so far included measures to reduce class sizes, abolish student fees, an early announcement on plans to remove tolls on the Forth and Tay bridges, save A&E units, and establish a council of economic advisers.

A source close to Mr Salmond added: "This is yet another dodgy dossier from the Labour Party, riddled with errors and inconsistencies.

"Refusing to recognise that we moved to abolish tolls on the Forth and Tay bridges - which even Labour eventually backed in Parliament - is just one glaring example.

"By common consent, the new SNP government has got off to an excellent start - with the polls showing that two thirds of the people believe we are doing a good job."

Voice of the Mirror: Page 8

mark.smith@mirror.co.uk

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'EXCELLENT START': Alex Salmond
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Publication:The Mirror (London, England)
Date:Aug 23, 2007
Words:496
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