This weekend marks the 25th anniversary of the reconvening of the Scottish Parliament, coming as it does at the end of a week when Holyrood elected its seventh first minister. The first elections under devolution were held on May 6, 1999, with the first meeting taking place six days later.

This week polling expert Professor Sir John Curtice said that devolution had been very good for the SNP.

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But has the SNP been good for devolution? One reader thinks not.

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Jill Stephenson of Edinburgh writes:

"There is a silence in the land. We are nearing May 12, the 25th anniversary of the opening of the Scottish Parliament, but this event has been eclipsed by the chaos in the ruling party’s leadership. There are vague plans to mark the occasion later in the year, with, for example, the Presiding Officer, Alison Johnstone (Green Party), touring the country to ask people’s views about the parliament. But the occasion itself has scarcely been mentioned in public.

By contrast, in 2019, there were fanfares and a visit from Her Late Majesty to Holyrood, among other events, to celebrate Holyrood’s 20th anniversary. But now there is little sign of celebration. As the journalist Chris Deerin rightly says, we now have 'an institution that is flawed, angry and divided. One that, for too many years, has arguably been focused on the wrong things.' Legislation since 2019 has brought us the hate crime law and the Gender Reform Recognition Bill, two of the worst pieces of law-making in our history, as well as failed attempts by the SNP’s Green allies to make our lives more miserable.

Is there anything to celebrate? Holyrood is a lacklustre institution with mostly third-rate politicians, some of whom on the SNP benches are barely able to string a sentence together. It has all cost us billions of pounds, for everything from the building itself, through the inflated salaries - the first minister paid more than the UK’s prime minister, for example - to subsidised canteens and superfluous ministers.

Scottish nationalists think that Holyrood’s failings derive from it not having full powers, but governments haven’t used all the powers that they have. Why anyone thinks that a sovereign Scottish government would perform any better than what we have had recently is a mystery. Devolution in Scotland serves as an awful warning for anyone so much as thinking of leaving the UK."