It’s understood Cllr Doig was temporarily removed from the organisation yesterday morning pending further investigation.

Doig, who currently serves on Renfrewshire Council as the elected representative for Johnstone North, Kilbarchan and Lochwinnoch, was aiming to become the MSP for Renfrewshire South at the Scottish Parliament elections in 2016.

The 53-year-old, who is a former Assistant National Secretary for the party and a four-time Westminster candidate, had been selected as the party’s candidate for the seat after securing 54 per cent of the vote.

But after he was announced as the winner of the candidacy he was reported to SNP HQ amid claims he used insider information to canvas support from party members for weeks ahead of the internal selection contest.

He has now been suspended and has lost his candidacy after a leaked e-mail found its way to SNP bosses.

Doig says the party have accused him of having misogynistic and homophobic views and say they claim his e-mail proves it.

But he insists that his comments were satirical in nature and he does not hold misogynistic and homophobic views.

He said: “Humour is a very personal thing and I accept that what one person finds humorous another may find offensive.

“This was a private spoof press statement, not intended for public consumption.

“I recently welcomed on Twitter the vote in Ireland for same sex marriage and one of the main political campaigns I was involved in in the later 1980s was to stop the closure of the Women’s Aid refuge in Falkirk.

“So I refute charges of misogyny and homophobia.” An SNP spokesperson said: “Andrew Doig has been suspended from the SNP and the Renfrewshire Council group pending a full investigation.

“Any sexist or homophobic comments are entirely unacceptable and have no place in the party.”