The Scottish National Party has roundly criticized ScottishPower after it emerged that the company has paid out millions in compensation to senior managers who left the firm last year.

Among the recipients of the severance package was former CEO Ian Russell, who received GBP2.7 million in combined contract cancellation and pension payments.

The SNP’s energy spokesman Richard Lochhead branded the compensation scheme ‘obscene’. Customers who have been hit by a succession of increases in the last few months will view these astronomical payouts to executives who lost their jobs as obscene.

The extra money being paid by consumers is going to make these fat cats even fatter, he was quoted as saying by the Guardian newspaper.

The firm says the sums paid out were purely based upon the terms outlined in the employees’ contracts.