Humza Yousaf woes deepen as Labour files no-confidence vote in government

Tom Belger

The Scottish Labour leader Anas Sarwar has filed a ‘no confidence’ motion in the Scottish government today, heaping further pressure on Scottish First Minister Humza Yousaf and raising the chances of early Holyrood elections.

Sarwar told LBC Scotland it was a matter of “when not if” Yousaf resigned, but it would be “untenable” for the Scottish National Party to “presume” they could then impose another unelected leader on Scotland through their own leadership contest.

He said this was why the party would lodge a motion on the government itself, following Scottish Tory leader Douglas Ross’ motion of ‘no confidence’ yesterday in the First Minister. The motion has now been filed.

It comes after Sarwar wrote exclusively for LabourList that it was “clear that Humza Yousaf has lost control of his party and that his leadership is in tailspin” this morning, following the Greens’ departure from government.

That decision and the Greens’ threat to back a no-confidence motion leaves Yousaf’s political future hanging in the balance, and potentially dependent on the support of former SNP and now Alba politician Ash Regan.

She made clear on Thursday her support would be conditional on multiple demands around independence, women’s rights and other issues.

Sarwar added in his op-ed: “The people of Scotland can see the SNP have lost their way: weak, divided and incompetent. Putting party before country. In contrast, Scottish Labour is ready to deliver the change Scotland needs.”

The votes are expected to be held next Wednesday or Thursday.

The Scottish Parliament website states that if MSPs pass a ‘no confidence’ motion about all Scottish ministers rather than the First Minister alone, it could lead to Scottish Parliamentary elections.

The next scheduled elections are in May 2026.

Read our coverage of the 2024 local elections here.

If you have anything to share that we should be looking into or publishing about this or any other topic involving Labour, on record or strictly anonymously, contact us at [email protected]

Sign up to LabourList’s morning email for a briefing everything Labour, every weekday morning. 

If you can help sustain our work too through a monthly donation, become one of our supporters here.

And if you or your organisation might be interested in partnering with us on sponsored events or content, email [email protected].

More from LabourList


We provide our content free, but providing daily Labour news, comment and analysis costs money. Small monthly donations from readers like you keep us going. To those already donating: thank you.

If you can afford it, can you join our supporters giving £10 a month?

And if you’re not already reading the best daily round-up of Labour news, analysis and comment…