A VICIOUS war of words between a Labour MP and the SNP has deepened, after the politician publicly claimed that a nationalist 'youth wing' was infiltrating schools to 'brainwash pupils'.


Michael McCann, MP for East Kilbride, Strathaven and Lesmahagow, compiled a report from notes a Labour spy took at an SNP 'meet the candidate' event, and published it on his website.

The mole claimed that a delegate told the meeting: "Sterling work was being done by the SNP youth wing in all local schools," and spoke of lunchtime meetings designed to encourage children to pester their parents into voting for the party being 'packed out'. More teachers were being "converted to the cause", it is alleged.

Mr McCann's article states that another woman, claiming to be a teacher, said they were showing children videos of Westminster which they found boring in a bid to put them off the institution. It also complained of plans to target the elderly, expressing fears they would be harassed by SNP activists.

SNP MSP Linda Fabiani, who was at the event, reacted furiously to the claim, describing the comments as "completely unacceptable". She called on Scottish Labour leader Jim Murphy to take action against the "increasingly desperate" MP.

Meanwhile, the East Kilbride branch of the SNP said the event was "very positive and very transparent" in contrast to the Labour mole who used a fake name. A post on its website added: "These are the kind of tactics discussed by student activists in the bar on a Friday night, but which never see the light of day once sobriety returns."

Mr McCann said that he was sticking by his article, claiming he had been provided with a transcript from the Labour spy, who he said had been acting under no direction from anyone else.

"I could have ignored it, but that would have been a dereliction of my duty," he said. "As an MP, I'm duty bound to go to the local authority and ask them to look into it. It could well be that people said things that are inaccurate but let me be crystal clear - these words were said. This individual isn't some fly by night and has no reason to make things up."

Jim Gilhooly, executive director of Education Resources at South Lanarkshire Council, said: "It is worth noting that these allegations are anonymous, so must be treated with caution. Furthermore, our secondary schools have all confirmed that there are no such political meetings organised within school premises at lunchtime or any other part of the school day."