HUMZA Yousaf has set out plans for a constitution in an independent Scotland, despite his party's lack of progress on securing independence. 

The First Minister unveiled the 'Creating a modern constitution for an independent Scotland' paper in Glasgow on Monday. 

It is the fourth in the SNP-Green administration’s Building a New Scotland series which aims to answer key questions about independence. 

It is the first published since Mr Yousaf replaced Nicola Sturgeon as First Minister in March.

The previous papers published looked at how other small independent countries compared to the UK, democracy and the economy, including currency arrangements.

Mr Yousaf was previously dismissive of the series, understood to have cost the taxpayer more than £1.5m, describing them during the SNP leadership contest as material “that frankly sits on a website and nobody reads”.

READ MORE: Yousaf says 'nobody reads' taxpayer-funded £1.5m indy prospectus

In his speech, Mr Yousaf said work would start on an interim constitution as soon as Scots voted for independence.

This would then be adopted when Scotland becomes independent, at which point a constitutional convention would be established to develop a permanent constitution.

This would then have to be voted on in a referendum before it’s formally adopted. 

The Frist Minister said the process would "energise" voters 

“Governments come and go, but what a constitution built by the people can do is set out and embody a set of longer term, more fundamental values about what our country is for, how it should work" he said. 

This would include "a common understanding of a nation's priorities, a standard below which no government should ever fall, and a mechanism for ensuring that these aren't just lofty words, but are meaningful rights that put power in the hands of the people who live here.”

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Mr Yousaf said he believed there was “a general consensus” in Scotland on certain key beliefs in equality, opportunity, community and certain basic rights. 

“The UK does not have a codified Constitution as we know instead, its constitutional arrangements are based on the principle that the Westminster parliament is sovereign," he added.

“We've spent the last decade looking on as the UK Government undermines constitutional principle after constitutional principle, with very little that anyone can do about challenging them or holding them to account. 

“That would not be possible in a country with a codified written constitution that sets what the rules are but then importantly, and crucially sets out what people can do to ensure that governments and politicians adhere to them.

"Westminster has already been able to undermine the devolution settlement, override decisions made by an elected Scottish Parliament.

"In the future, Westminster sovereignty, of course, could even allow the UK Parliament to repeal devolution through nothing other than a simple majority vote." 

READ MORE: Humza Yousaf to unveil new paper in independence prospectus series

He said the paper could not at this stage “definitively say what will be in the permanent written constitution of an independent Scotland” as “that can only be taken after independence by the people of Scotland.” 

The Furst Minister said it could describe the role of key institutions such as parliament, the government, and the courts and contain measures "on other issues which people see as being of fundamental significance and importance.”

This, he said, could include the right to industrial action, adequate housing, access to health care free at the point of need, a ban on nuclear weapons and the rights and interests of our island communities.

During questions and answers with media, Mr Yousaf was challenged on how the party would get to independence.

“Our preferred method, our preferred option for Scotland becoming an independent country is that legally binding, legally mandated Section 30 referendum that Westminster has continued to deny, continued to block that.

"And that's why I've said repeatedly that the only way to break that logjam, to break that Westminster intransigence is through building popular support.

"It is the popular support of the people that will break that logjam."

He said more details would come at this weekend SNP's conference on independence.

"I'll just reiterate and reemphasise the point, our position actually has never changed. Our position is that we should be independent through a referendum and we have mandate after mandate after mandate for that."

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The paper was welcomed by the Scottish Greens constitution spokesperson Ross Greer.

He said: “An independent Scotland’s constitution can guarantee that we are a nuclear weapon free zone. We wouldn't just eject the UK's nuclear arsenal from the Clyde, but could follow New Zealand's example and ban any country's nuclear weapons from even passing through our territory."

He added that in the discussion around what should be in the constitution his party would argue "that if we want to become a real democracy, we must elect our head of state, leaving behind the weird notion that one family can rule over the rest of us by magical birthright.”

Scottish Conservative shadow constitution secretary Donald Cameron said the paper was "the height of self-indulgence from Humza Yousaf."

He added: "The SNP leader and First Minister confirmed he really is Nicola Sturgeon’s continuity candidate by dusting down her old independence playbook.

“The SNP are so obsessed with their push for independence that they are now pressing for not just one divisive referendum but two to take place if they ever get their way.

“He knows that the obsession with breaking up the United Kingdom is the only issue that can keep the warring factions in his party together.

“Humza Yousaf has a total brass neck saying the cost-of-living is the number one issue for him when he is happy to spend taxpayers’ money publishing yet another paper in relation to independence and trying to waste parliamentary time on it next week."