Boris Johnson has hit out at the SNP’s record on education and crime, telling the party to drop its referendum plans and start focusing on “the real issues”.
The prime minister said the Scottish Government should look to spend the “huge sums” handed over by Westminster to correct a number of policy “failures“.
Mr Johnson’s comments came in response to SNP Westminster leader Ian Blackford, who is calling on the UK Government to use next week’s Budget to announce a major investment package on a similar scale to that trailed by President Biden.
The prime minister said: “I’m proud of the massive investments that the UK treasury has made throughout the whole of the UK.
“Thirteen billion pounds and more is going to Scotland, huge sums are going throughout the country and I must say I wish the Scottish nationalist government would spend that money better.
“It’s very sad to see some of the failures in education policy in Scotland, criminal justice policy and fighting crime.
“I think what the people of the whole UK and the people of Scotland would like to see is less talk about a referendum and more talk about the real issues facing the country.”
Mr Blackford dismissed the remarks, saying: “Coronavirus has exposed the deep inequalities under this broken Westminster system.
“After a decade of Tory cuts, millions of families are in poverty and UK unemployment is soaring.
“In contrast, in the United States President Biden understands what is needed. He has proposed a $1.9 trillion stimulus package to restart and renew the American economy.
“Prime minister, will your government follow the example of the US and boost the economy like Biden?”
Mr Johnson responded: “This government is investing £640 billion pounds in infrastructure alone throughout the UK, a massive programme to get our country rebuilt and restarted again.
“I think that is what people would like to focus on, rather than his agenda, which is break up Britain with another referendum.
“I think that is the last thing this country needs at the moment.”