It seems that Jack McConnell has been plunged into a gay rights row in Malawi. The Malawian Gay Rights Movement MAGRIM are desperately awaiting his arrival.
A spokesman said: “We are anxiously waiting for the arrival of Jack McConnell. He supports gay rights and we believe he will use his influence as High Commissioner as well as his close working relationship with President Bingu Mutharika to put in place friendly legislation for homosexuality.”
As I have commented before on this blog, Jack McConnell is due to take over from Richard Wildash when he leaves his post on January.
That means there is pressure on Jack McConnell to quit as a Scottish MSP to allow a suitable handover to take place.
Now it seems that Labour are considering holding a snap by-election in Jack McConnell’s Motherwell and Wishaw constituency on November 6th.
The same day pencilled in for the Glenrothes by-election.
The date of November 6th, being two days after the American Presidential election, is already seen as a good day to bury bad news; as the media will be focussed on the new American President.
Having two by-elections on the one day may also split the SNP campaign activists. Labour activists were vastly outnumbered by SNP activists in the Glasgow East by-election.
Gay rights is a hot topic in Malawi. Homosexuality is banned in the country.
One politician Aden Mbowani MP of the Malawi Congress Party, dismissed any change in the law, saying:
“This man you call McConnell, he will not influence any policy in this country”
I think he must have studied Scottish politics! As First Minister of Scotland even fellow Labour MPs did not know his name.