ALEX Salmond has said he wants his Alba party to be a "home for the lost souls of the national movement" and contest next year’s council elections despite its humiliation in the Holyrood race.

The former First Minister insisted Alba “will continue and it will flourish” even though it won just 1.7 per cent of the list vote and had no MSPs elected.

In a video to Alba's 5,000 members, Mr Salmond also claimed to have "won the argument" on independence, if not the result he hoped for.

He said: "We have established Alba as a political party determined and resolved on the immediacy, the requirement for Scottish Independence. 

"We are sitting there on the SNP's flank as a viable political party to make sure that the case for Independence is now progressed with urgency."

He said the party's conference in June, Covid permitting, would elect leaders and office bearers and decide on whether to stand in local elections."

He said the party's 32 Holyrood candidates, "brave hearts each and every one of them", wanted to field candidates next May.

He said: "It will be up to the delegates, of course, it will be up to the membership, but I think we should, because we've got something special to say to Scotland

"A new political force, a force to be reckoned with for the future."

Mr Salmond also complained that the SNP leadership had told its supporters to use their list vote for the SNP, only to get just two MSPs in return for 1million votes.

He said it bore out Alba's warning that voting for the SNP on the list was a "wasted" vote for the independence cause.

He said: "In contrast Labour, Tories in constituencies have been tactically voting so the SNP didn't win Dumbarton, didn't win Eastwood because Unionists tactically voted - Labour, Liberal Democrat,Tory, rag, tag and bobtail, in order to prevent  the SNP winning. 

"I don't mind the Unionist voters voting smart, voting tactically, what I mind is the SNP leadership sending their troops over the top and piling up a million wasted votes. 

"So that argument didn't cut through to the people this time round.  But I wonder will it not stand us in good stead in times to come now that people know its demonstrably true."

He went on: "The second big contribution of the campaign was to bring forward the real Independence case, the case for 2021 and beyond. 

"Answer the difficult questions on Scotland in Europe, on borders, on currency, on debt and on assets, the things that should be there as part of the Independence platform.

"Alba has made these contributions in this campaign and therefore that is what secures the future of our party.  

“Alba will be arguing for the immediacy and urgency of Independence. 

"Alba will be there, as a home for the lost souls of the national movement, the Yes campaigners, the people looking for a political voice. 

"That's where Alba's future lies and I think its going to be a very rosie future indeed and in the next year if not before all of Scotland will see Alba rising.”