Maureen Watt

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Maureen Watt
Minister for Public Health
Assumed office
21 November 2014
First Minister Nicola Sturgeon
Preceded by Michael Matheson
Convener of the Scottish Parliament Infrastructure and Capital Investment Committee
Assumed office
15 June 2011
Preceded by Patrick Harvie (as Convenor of the Transport, Infrastructure and Climate Change Committee)
Minister for Schools and Skills
In office
17 May 2007 – 10 February 2009
First Minister Alex Salmond
Preceded by Hugh Henry
Succeeded by Keith Brown
Member of the Scottish Parliament
for Aberdeen South and North Kincardine
Assumed office
6 May 2011
Preceded by Nicol Stephen
Majority 6,323
Member of the Scottish Parliament
for North East Scotland
In office
19 April 2006 – 23 March 2011
Personal details
Born 23 June 1951 (age 62)
Nationality Scottish
Political party Scottish National Party

Maureen Watt (born 23 June 1951)[1] is a Scottish politician who is Minister of Public Health and has served as a Scottish National Party Member of the Scottish Parliament for North East Scotland since 2006.

Born in Aberdeen to a farming family, she was a secondary school teacher in Social Studies in England and moved back to Scotland to work in the oil sector.

She was sworn in as MSP on 19 April 2006 to replace Richard Lochhead who had resigned his seat to contest the Moray by-election. The next person on the SNP list from the 2003 election had been Alasdair Allan but he refused his place in Parliament as he had secured the SNP nomination for the Western Isles for the 2007 election. The next person on the list was Maureen Watt, who took up the place. She became the first MSP to swear their oath of allegiance in Doric.[2][3]

Watt made her maiden speech [4] on 20 April 2006 on the subject of Drug Treatment and Rehabilitation. With a gap of only 17 hours 25 minutes since taking the Parliamentary oath she took over the record for the shortest wait from John Scott.

She had previously been a Councillor on Grampian Regional Council and had served on the Visiting Committee of Aberdeen Prison.

After the SNP's victory at the 2007 Scottish Parliament Election, Watt was appointed as the Minister for Schools and Skills.[5] She left office on 10 February 2009.

In May 2011, Watt was elected as SNP MSP for Aberdeen South and North Kincardine on a 15.77% swing from the Liberal Democrats.

On 21 November 2014, she was appointed Minister of Public Health succeeding Michael Matheson who was promoted to the Cabinet.[6]


Watt is the daughter of former SNP MP (1974–1979) Hamish Watt. She is married with two children. One of them, Stuart Donaldson, was elected to the UK Parliament in 2015.[7]


  1. ^
  2. ^ "Someone to spik up for Doric at last". The Scotsman. 22 April 2006. Retrieved 22 November 2014. 
  3. ^ "Doric oath as new MSPs sworn in". BBC News. 19 April 2006. Retrieved 22 December 2014. 
  4. ^ Official Report; c 24778, Scottish Parliament, 20 April 2006
  5. ^ "Salmond announces his new cabinet". BBC News (BBC). 16 May 2007. 
  6. ^ "Nicola Sturgeon announces new Scottish cabinet". BBC News (BBC). 21 November 2014. 
  7. ^ "Election 2015: Who are the 56 new SNP MPs?". BBC News. BBC. 8 May 2015. Retrieved 10 May 2015. 

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