Alba billboard rejected because it 'slanders' Rishi Sunak

The poster shows the Prime Minister as a vampire feeding off Scotland's oil.

Alex Salmond’s Alba Party’s billboard is rejected because it ‘slanders’ Rishi Sunak, Global claims Alba Party

A billboard created by Alex Salmond’s Alba Party has been rejected by one of the UK’s biggest media companies.

Global said it would not advertise the party’s poster which shows Rishi Sunak as a vampire feeding off Scotland’s oil because it “slandered” him.

The poster, which shows the Prime Minister with fangs dripping with oil, reads: “No wonder he’s laughing. He’s got Scotland’s oil.”

The party said it was an update to the SNP’s poster during their 1980s “It’s Scotland’s oil” campaign.

SNP's Margaret Thatcher it's Scotland's oil poster
Alba said their ad is an update to the SNP’s Margaret Thatcher poster during the 1980s

Alba’s poster is nearly identical to the SNP’s one, which shows Margaret Thatcher looking like a vampire.

In an email seen by STV News, Global said: “The only political messages we allow to run are basic messages such as vote for us, but not when a party is slandering someone.”

Alba said the poster aimed to highlight how it is the only party to back future extraction of oil and gas in the North Sea.

Chris McEleny, the party’s general secretary, said the poster is “completely legitimate”.

He said: “If a company accepts political advertising we are entering a potentially dangerous place if they then want to pick and choose which political messages it supports and which it wishes to censure because it doesn’t agree with them.

“In a democratic society, a political message that criticises the Government of the day and the way it squanders resources is completely legitimate.”

He compared the rejection to the closure of Nigel Farage’s Coutts bank account which ultimately saw the owner of NatWest resign.

McEleny continued: “There are parallels here to banks picking and choosing who can bank with them, advertising companies would do well to remember how that saga ended up.”

On X, the social media platform formerly known as Twitter, Tory MSP Murdo Fraser criticised the poster.

He said: “This is where Scottish politics is in 2023, our first Asian heritage prime minister being depicted in this way. More than a little distasteful.”

Alba Party chairwoman Tasmina Ahmed-Sheikh replied: “Of course anyone who knows anything about Scottish politics would recognise this as an interesting update of a poster from the highly successful ‘It’s Scotland’s Oil’ campaign – originally devised about Margaret Thatcher.

“Nothing to do with colour, all to do with substance.”

Global has been approached for comment.

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