Former First Minister Alex Salmond will lead a new party to contest seats in the Scottish Parliament elections in May. 

The Alba Party will campaign for Scottish Independence and will be seeking to attract voters to its cause - potentially away from the SNP and the Scottish Greens. 

So far, Mr Salmond said that party will field candidates across Scotland on four of the eight regional lists, seeking to enter Holyrood through proportional respresentation. 

This would allow the party to gain an MSP in each region it stands in, if it secures around ten per cent of the vote - Each 'addictional member' region return seven MSPs each. 

HeraldScotland:

Alex Salmond

What is the Alba Party?

It has been reported that the party was founded in January this year by former TV producer Laurie Flynn, and was registered in February 8 by the Electoral Commission.

At its launch the party said its aims were: "National Independence for Scotland as an immediate necessity, and overwhelming priority, achieved by democratic means through a vote of people resident in Scotland."

Its website states that if the party should get around half of the SNP list vote this would result in 20-25 Alba MSPs. The idea is to secure a Parliamentary 'supermajority' for independence "in the region of +40, rather than the +5 which was achieved in 2016."

READ MORE: Salmond launches rival party to SNP for Holyrood election

The website states: "Alba Party will secure a Supermajority of pro Independence MSPs; and has a realistic prospect of becoming the second largest party in the Scottish Parliament, ahead of both the Conservative and Labour parties."

If this number of MSps are elected, the party believes it would be entitled to take part with the Scottish Government on negotiations with Westminster over a future independence referendum. 

How is Alex salmond involved? 

It had been speculated that Mr Salmond would seek to contest a seat at the election in May as an independent. But his decision to front the Alba Party came as a surprise. 

Who are the candidates?

So far, four candidates have been announced. Mr Salmond will stand in the North East region and lead the Alba Party.

Chris McEleny, an SNP councillor in Inverclyde, has resigned from the Nationalists to stand in the West of Scotland for the Alba Party.

HeraldScotland:

Councillor Chris McEleny

Lawyer Eva Comrie will stand in the Mid-Scotland and Fife region. Ms Comrie was previously an SNP Candidate for this list, but was unlikely to win a seat.

Businesswoman Cynthia Guthrie, CEO, of the Guthrie Group, will stand in South of Scotland.

HeraldScotland:

Cynthia Guthrie

What has Alex Salmond said?

Mr Salmond said: “Over the next six weeks we will promote new ideas about taking Scotland forward, giving primacy to economic recovery from the pandemic and the achievement of independence for our country.

“We expect to field a minimum of four candidates in each regional list and we’re hoping to elect Alba MSPs from every area of Scotland.”

READ MORE: SNP blasts Salmond's Alba party as "predictable" and "self-interest"

Mr Salmond said the aim of the party is to work towards a “successful, socially just, environmentally responsible, independent country”.

He said: “Today, Alba is hoisting a flag in the wind, planting our Saltire on a hill.

“In the next few weeks, we’ll see how many will rally to our standard.”