NICOLA Sturgeon has said she “can’t recall” when she first learned her husband had loaned the SNP a six-figure sum to help bail out its finances.

The First Minister repeatedly failed to say what she knew and when after being pressed on the matter at a Scottish Government press conference.

Opposition parties have called the loan “murky” and “beyond odd” in the past.

Ms Sturgeon today released her tax returned from 2015/16 to 2021/22 and urged other Holyrood leaders to do likewise in aid of “transparency”.

However she was less forthcoming when asked about the unusual loan.

A row over the loan blew up in December after it emerged Ms Sturgeon’s husband, the SNP chief executive Peter Murrell, had loaned the SNP £107,620 in June 2021.

The money was given to “assist with cashflow” after the Holyrood election campaign.

But despite being the SNP’s chief official for 20 years, Mr Murrell failed to declare it on time to the Electoral Commission.

All loans to political parties of more than £7,500 must be declared within 30 days of the quarter in which they are made, meaning by the end of July 2021 in this case.

The SNP did not report it for more than a year, in August 2022.

The party also cloaked Mr Murrell’s identity in its annual accounts for 2021, saying the interest-free loan had come from unnamed “executive management”.

It was attributed to Mr Murrell on an Electoral Commission database, but this was not widely reported until the pro-independence Wings Over Scotland website highlighed it in December.

Asked today when she first knew her husband had loaned the party she leads £107,000, Ms Sturgeon tried to dodge the question.

READ MORE: Sturgeon flees questions over husband's 'murky' £100,000 SNP loan

She said: “My husband is an individual and he will take decisions about what he does with resources that belong to him in line with that.”

Pressed on when she knew Mr Murrell had given the money to the party, she said: “I can’t recall exactly when I first knew that.

“But what he does with his resources is a matter [for him].”

Asked if the money was wholly her husband’s, or whether any of it belonged to her, she said: “The resources that he lent to the party were resources that belonged to him.”

Asked if the money belonged wholly to her husband and none to her, she said: “They were his resources. His resources.”

According to Electoral Commission records, Mr Murrell was repaid £47,620 of the loan in autumn 2021, but £60,000 of the original sum remains outstanding.

Ms Sturgeon was also extremely tight-lipped about the money in December, saying merely that her husband had “made a personal contribution as a supporter of the party”.

She repeatedly refused to say at the time if any of the money had come from her.

Scottish Conservative chairman Craig Hoy said today: “I think most normal people would recall the circumstances very clearly, if their spouse happened to mention that they’d lent their employer a six-figure sum.

“It’s a very odd and murky-looking scenario, which probably explains why Nicola Sturgeon looked so uncomfortable when questioned about it.”