Salmond: No contact from Blair

Alex Salmond, Scotland’s first minister, has revealed neither Tony Blair nor Gordon Brown have contacted him since he was elected first minister.

Mr Salmond said: “The form, I suppose, would be that the prime minister should have been in touch.

“That’s a matter for him to explain.”

The revelation follows comments from Labour MP Ann Moffat comparing Salmond’s election to the rise of Hitler.

Commenting on problems during the Scottish elections which led to thousands of spoilt ballots, she said: “Proportional representation gave Germany Adolf Hitler and in Scotland to a lesser degree we’ve had the member for Banff and Buchan”.

Speaking at a briefing in Bute House in Edinburgh this weekend, Mr Salmond also made the case for formalising the relationship between Westminster and the devolved governments of Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland.

He argued the emergence of government in the regions all ruled by different parties meant formal channels of communication needed to be established.

“I don’t think you could possibly argue that when you have administrations across the country of different political complexion, you have to have a proper process by which areas of joint interest can be progressed, areas of difference reconciled,” he said.

“Otherwise, what are the various governments meant to do – are we meant to get a Labour MSP to raise a question at first minister’s questions, or am I meant to get an SNP MP raise a question at prime minister’s questions?

“What would be important is to have the Scottish government, the Northern Ireland government, and the Welsh government agree that they want that procedure,” he concluded.

Mr Salmond’s Scottish National Party (SNP) has suggested adapting the little-used joint ministerial committees for joint negotiations.