"Earlier today, it was alleged that SNP Councillor Julie McAnulty – a candidate for the Scottish Parliamentary elections on 5 May – had made racist remarks.

"If the accusations against McAnulty are true, they serve as an ugly reminder of the racist language, abuse, and discrimination that Black, Asian and Minority Ethnic (BAME) communities experience in Scotland on a daily basis.

"Racist comments from people in the public eye will only further alienate communities who already suffer from media scapegoating and harassment.

"The RISE BAME (Black, Asian and Minority Ethnic) Network would like to register our deep concern at the continued presence of racism in Scottish public life.

"Scotland has a racism problem. This problem is not restricted to far-right organisations but is prevalent throughout Scottish society.

"RISE - Scotland's Left Alliance will actively challenge the inequalities and ignorance that allows racism to fester.

"We condemn the alleged comments made by Councillor McAnulty. If she has indeed made them, she should be removed from her position immediately."