A SENIOR Inverclyde councillor is taking the Ministry of Defence to an employment tribunal.

According to reports, the SNP’s Chris McEleny was forced to quit his job as an electrician when his security clearance was revoked after more than a decade.

The Gourock councillor had previously worked at MoD sites in Beith and Coulport until his resignation in the summer.

Mr McEleny’s security clearance was allegedly withdrawn pending an investigation sparked by his anti-Trident stance, support for independence, his views on Irish politics and Rangers and his battle with depression, which he has publicly spoken about.

The probe is said to have begun after Mr McEleny announced his candidacy to become his party’s deputy leader last year.

The councillor, who is the SNP group leader on Inverclyde Council, was also suspended from his post while the probe took place.

His security clearance was reinstated following a year-long investigation but Mr McEleny is said to have quit his job over the treatment by his former employer.

Councillor McEleny said: “I can confirm I am taking the MoD to an employment tribunal.

“I am unable to comment further.”

The politician is being represented by Glasgow lawyer Aamer Anwar, who is helping him pursue the MoD for alleged discrimination and victimisation.

Mr Anwar said: “There can be no justification for the treatment that Councillor McEleny alleges and in a democracy we have a right to demand answers.

“The allegations that Councillor McEleny makes of his treatment at the hands of the MoD are a disgraceful abuse of power.

“They knew perfectly well he was no security risk yet appear to have used his politics against him.

“We are not living in the 1970s when the security services kept files on trade unionists, legitimate activists, and where blacklists were operated and lives wrecked.”

An MoD spokesperson said: “It would not be appropriate to comment on the details of an ongoing employment tribunal.”