'MAY I wish all constituents throughout Fife, Perth and Kinross, Stirling, and Clackmannanshire a happy and prosperous New Year for 2020.

2019 was a really interesting year on the political front and I was delighted to see Boris Johnson secure a Conservative win in the General Election.

His substantial majority was the biggest Conservative majority in more than 30 years and it now allows us to progress with Brexit and move forward with the Conservative agenda, which will include substantial additional funding for the NHS, a tax break for the low paid, an end to the benefit freeze, and a determination to keep Scotland in the Union.

Unfortunately, in Scotland, the SNP continue banging on about a second Independence Referendum and not respecting the wishes of the majority of the people in the country. The SNP achieved 45% of the vote in the General Election, which means the majority voted for pro-Union political parties, and opinion polls still do not indicate that the people of Scotland want another Referendum after the last one in 2014, which of course the SNP lost.

Instead, the SNP Government should focus on the day job and look at issues that need addressed such as the health service, education, police and notable problems such as uncertainty concerning the rail network with the Scottish Government recently dropping the Abellio franchise.

Locally, it has also been an interesting year, with broadband still one of the main issues constituents raise with me. Rural areas of Perthshire and Fife continue to suffer from slow broadband speeds – some as slow as 0.5Mbps (Megabytes per second).

Matters have not been helped by delays with the Scottish Government’s R100 (Reaching 100% programme), which is the SNP’s pledge to roll-out superfast broadband to 100% of Scotland’s residents by 2021.

2019 has been a year of political uncertainty. I hope that with the General Election behind us, a new Government installed, and a clear route ahead to deliver Brexit, 2020 will bring with it stability and a chance for the country to move forward in a more united basis than has been possible in the recent past'.