NICOLA Sturgeon has been urged to suspend an SNP activist after he attacked a LibDem general election candidate on social media on the day of her husband’s funeral.

The LibDems said Simon Hayter should be axed from the SNP contest in Edinburgh West after he wrongly claimed Christine Jardine campaigned during the Manchester truce.

Ms Jardine had in fact been at the funeral of her husband Calum Macdonald in Clydebank.

Mr Hayter, who stood unsuccessfully as an SNP council candidate this month, is campaigning for the SNP’s Toni Giugliano in Edinburgh West, the top LibDem target seat in Scotland.

He said he did not know about the funeral, and apologised for saying Ms Jardine personally campaigned, but insisted her team had been out canvassing, something the LibDems deny.

All campaigning was suspended on Tuesday on Wednesday as a mark of respect to the victims of the Manchester Arena bombing.

On Wednesday, Ms Jardine delivered the eulogy for her husband, a former Herald journalist, and spent the afternoon at a reception for family and friends in Bearsden.

Around 5pm Mr Hayter tweeted: “@Cajardine and @scotlibdems are out in Edin West today delivering leaflets & letters while campaigning is suspended. #shameful.”

When Ms Jardine explained her circumstances, Mr Hayter kept tweeting, accusing her and the LibDems of hypocrisy and trying “to buy a seat”, adding: “My condolences on your husband.”

The LibDems have now lodged a formal complaint with Nicola Sturgeon, SNP chief executive Peter Murrell and Mr Giugliano.

Mr Hayter said of Ms Jardine: “She was bombarding me with tweets. I could have ignored her and not have replied, but I responded to her statements and her questions.

“I was making it clear that her campaign was out in Edinburgh West.

“I do sympathise. I did not know the funeral was on. I certainly did not harass her. But in my opinion her campaign was out, her activists were out delivering letters and speaking to voters, during the period of time the campaign was meant to be suspended.”

Mr Giugliano said: "I would encourage all those involved in this online dispute to put divisions aside and come together in what should be a robust, yet respectful campaign - the electorate expect nothing less."

An SNP spokesman said “We share the view that both parties should move on.”