Former Finance Minister resignation correspondence: FOI release

Information request and response under the Freedom of Information (Scotland) Act 2002

Information requested

Any record of the meeting in which Derek Mackay ‘resigned verbally’ from Government on 5/6th February 2020 (according to Scottish Government quote here:
This might take the form of emails, attachments, typed or handwritten notes, letters, notes/records of phone calls, texts or instant messages, minutes, briefings or other.

Any internal documents or correspondence arising from or on the subject of Derek Mackay’s resignation on 5/6th February 2020 (including emails, attachments, typed or handwritten notes, letters, notes/records of phone calls, texts or instant messages, minutes of meetings, briefings or otherwise).

Copies of any letters/emails sent by members of the public or stakeholders to Nicola Sturgeon on the subject of Derek Mackay’s resignation or the reasons for his resignation. Please limit to the time period 5 February 2020 to present.


With regards to the first part of your request. An unscheduled discussion took place between the First Minister and Derek Mackay, on the evening of the 5th of February. The meeting took place in Mr Mackay’s office, within the Ministerial tower of the Scottish Parliament. While our aim is to provide information whenever possible, in this instance the Scottish Government does not have the information you have requested. This is a formal notice under section 17(1) of FOISA that the Scottish Government does not have the information you have requested.

With regards to the second and third parts of your request while our aim is to provide information whenever possible, in this instance the costs of locating, retrieving and providing the information requested would exceed the upper cost limit of £600. This is because your request covers everyone working within Scottish Government, this is over 6000 officials, and we have received a large amount of correspondence on the subject. Under section 12 of FOISA public authorities are not required to comply with a request for information if the authority estimates that the cost of complying would exceed the upper cost limit, which is urrently set at £600 by Regulations made under section 12. You may, however, wish to consider reducing the scope of your request in order that the costs can be brought below £600. For example, you could restrict your request to a specific business area of the Scottish Government, and in relation to correspondence reduce the timeframe, as this would allow us to limit the searches that would require to be conducted. You may find it helpful to look at the Scottish Information Commissioner’s ‘Tips for requesting information under FOI and the EIRs’ on his website at: You may also find it helpful to look at our responses to other freedom of information requests and

About FOI

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Please quote the FOI reference
Central Enquiry Unit
Phone: 0300 244 4000

The Scottish Government
St Andrews House
Regent Road

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