Holyrood absence for Presiding Officer Alison Johnstone due to planned surgery By Press Association November 21 2023, 11.29am Share Holyrood absence for Presiding Officer Alison Johnstone due to planned surgery Share via Facebook Twitter Whatsapp Messenger Linkedin Email Post link https://www.pressandjournal.co.uk/politics/6265878/holyrood-absence-for-presiding-officer-alison-johnstone-due-to-planned-surgery/ Copy Link Alison Johnstone posted news of her absence on social media (Russell Cheyne/PA) The Scottish Parliament’s Presiding Officer has announced she will be away for a few weeks due to planned surgery. Alison Johnstone said she would return soon and thanked NHS staff. Posting on X, formerly Twitter, she said: “Due to planned surgery, I’ll be away from the Parliament for a few weeks. Looking forward to being back at Holyrood soon. “Thanks to the caring and professional NHS staff.” Due to planned surgery, I’ll be away from the Parliament for a few weeks. Looking forward to being back at Holyrood soon. Thanks to the caring and professional NHS staff.— Alison Johnstone (@POScotParl) November 21, 2023 In her role overseeing Holyrood’s proceedings, she is supported by fellow MSPs Liam McArthur and Annabelle Ewing. Ms Johnstone became Presiding Officer following the last Scottish Parliament election in May 2021. She was the only candidate to come forward at the start of the Parliament’s sixth session. The Presiding Officer relinquishes party affiliation and sits as a non-partisan MSP for the duration of their term, meaning Ms Johnstone gave up her affiliation to the Scottish Greens. Among her responsibilities, which will be taken over by her deputies while she is away, are selecting questions at First Minister’s Questions and overseeing debates in the chamber.