NICOLA Sturgeon is facing fresh questions over the infamous “forgotten” meeting at which she learned of allegations of sexual misconduct against Alex Salmond.

The First Minister last week claimed the bombshell revelation from a former aide had been “over-written” in her mind by a later meeting with Mr Salmond himself.

“That is just how it is,” she told MSPs, as opposition parties called her account "beyond belief".

The Scottish Tories have now urged Ms Sturgeon to explain exactly how and when she remembered the crunch meeting with Mr Salmond’s former chief of staff, Geoff Aberdein.

The First Minister has said she was “reminded” of the encounter early last year, but has never explained how or by whom.

A Holyrood inquiry is looking at how the Scottish Government bungled a probe into claims of sexual misconduct made against Mr Salmond by two civil servants in 2018.

He had the whole exercise set aside in a judicial review after showing it had been “tainted by apparent bias”, a Government error that left taxpayers with a £512,000 for his costs.

After the Government’s case collapsed in January 2019, Ms Sturgeon told parliament she had had three meetings and two calls with Mr Salmond while he was under investigation.

She said the first of these was on 2 April 2018 at her home in Glasgow, and that it was Mr Salmond who had informed her he was under investigation.

However it later emerged at Mr Salmond’s separate criminal trial, at which he was acquitted of sexual assault, that Ms Sturgeon learned about the probe four days earlier.

Mr Aberdein told the court he told Ms Sturgeon in her Holyrood office on 29 March 2018.

It is Ms Sturgeon’s failure to mention this previous meeting that has led to accusations she misled parliament.

Ms Sturgeon also told parliament that she had met Mr Salmond at her home in her capacity as SNP leader, rather than in her role as First Minister.

But if she had prior knowledge that Mr Salmond wanted to discuss a Government investigation into him, that explanation would not hold.

In her written evidence to the inquiry, which was released last week, Ms Sturgeon said she forgot about the meeting with Mr Aberdein, despite its sensational content about her mentor of 20 years, as it was “in the midst of a busy day” after FMQs.

She said: “I had forgotten that this encounter had taken place until I was reminded of it in, I think, late January/early February 2019. 

“From what I recall, the discussion covered the fact that Alex Salmond wanted to see me urgently about a serious matter, and I think it did cover the suggestion that the matter might relate to allegations of a sexual nature. 

“The impression I had at this time was that Mr Salmond was in a state of considerable distress, and that he may be considering resigning his party membership.”

The Tories said Ms Sturgeon needed to clarify who reminded her of that meeting - something which could show how many more of the First Minister’s circle were aware of it.

MSP Oliver Mundell, who was recently ordered out the Holyrood chamber for accusing Ms Sturgeon of lying over the Salmond affair, said: “If the First Minister wants to be open with the public, then let’s see some upfront honesty for a change.

“The Scottish public needs to know who apparently reminded the First Minister of the meeting that she lied about and tried to cover up, and exactly when she was reminded of it.

“If it was a Scottish Government official, for instance her principal private secretary John Somers, then it makes a mockery of her claim that this sordid affair was all SNP business and nothing to do with the government.

“She should also come clean about who else attended this meeting. 

“If it was another high-ranking government official, as media reports suggest, Nicola Sturgeon’s claims that she kept her dual roles of SNP leader and First Minister separate are well and truly in tatters.”

A Scottish Government spokesperson said: “The First Minister stands by what she has said to Parliament and by her written evidence to the committee, and looks forward to answering questions at the committee when they decide to ask her to appear.”