After accusing the SSP executive of fabricating minutes and orchestrating "the mother of all frame-ups", Tommy Sheridan is now accusing the party of colluding with News of the World and MI5 to produce a fake video confession.This is an absurd and fantastical allegation that will be treated with astonishment by most people in Scotland. In fact, the tape is clearly authentic and blows apart Tommy's preposterous allegations against his old party comrades. The tape establishes, from Tommy's own mouth, that our 11 comrades, who were forced under threat of imprisonment to give evidence to the Court of Session, told the truth.
Contrary to the latest chapter in Tommy Sheridan's science fiction novel, the SSP had no involvement in the production of this tape. George McNeilage is an SSP member, but holds no position within the party. He taped this conversation as a private individual and as a former close personal friend of Tommy Sheridan.
The SSP does not advocate or practise the secret taping of conversations. The SSP had no knowledge of or role in the production of this tape.We have sought to build a political movement based on mutual trust - though we also recognise, with the benefit of hindsight, that Tommy Sheridan has been prepared to trample all trust into the dirt for his own personal ends.
Nor is it true, as has been falsely claimed by supporters of Tommy Sheridan, that the SSP handed this tape over to News of the World. The SSP EC has never had possession of this tape; nor did the SSP have any involvement in passing the tape to the newspaper. Neither the SSP nor any of its office-bearers have received or will receive a single penny from News of the World or from any other media company - unlike Tommy Sheridan, who was recently paid £30,000 by the New Labour-supporting media corporation, Trinity Mirror, for denouncing his then comrades as "scabs", "liars", "rats" and "perjurers".
We believe that events are now rapidly approaching a conclusion that will have seriously damaging consequences for Tommy Sheridan and his breakaway political organisation, Solidarity, founded on the basis of a lie and fraud.History will judge Tommy Sheridan's libel action as one of the biggest political misjudgements of modern times and will vindicate the judgement of the 2004 SSP EC, who advised a different course of action.
With a perjury investigation now underway, we are confident that the good name of the SSP will be restored 100 per cent. We can now start to draw a line under the past and move forward, establishing new branches, recruiting new members and winning support by engaging in the many campaigns for social and economic justice emerging across Scotland.
We have in recent weeks renewed our commitment to the anti-war movement and to the rapidly developing struggle for Scottish independence.We will continue our campaign against nuclear power and nuclear weapons.
Our party was built and will grow further around the principle of showing practical solidarity to workers and communities in struggle. We believe that if the SSP continues to look outward and engage with working people in their day-to-day struggles we can quickly recover any ground we have lost as result of the calamitous actions of Tommy Sheridan.