Madeleine McCann's father has been nominated for the title of Scot of the Year
2007, alongside Gordon Brown and former Scotland manger Alex McLeish.
Glasgow-born Gerry McCann was one of 12 candidates put forward by the Scotland on
Sunday newspaper for an online poll.
The news came as the family issued a desperate plea for information after it
emerged that police had still not traced every holidaymaker who was in Praia da Luz on the night of the toddler's disappearance.
British police have never been given a comprehensive list of all the guests in
the Portuguese resort and some forces are still searching for a handful of
people who could hold the key to finding the missing four-year-old.
Meanwhile, a lawyer for Robert Murat, the first suspect in the case, said
Portuguese detectives could conclude their inquiry as soon as January 3.
Francisco Pagarete said a public prosecutor would
decide early in the New Year whether to charge his client or Kate and Gerry
Under Portuguese law, at that point the evidence-gathering process will end and
the prosecutor will either formally accuse one or more
of the three - all "arguidos" or official suspects - or shelve the
case, he said.
Mr Pagarete predicted this was most likely to happen
on January 3, exactly eight months after Madeleine
vanished from her parents' holiday apartment in Praia da
Luz. All three deny any involvement in the girl's disappearance.
The McCanns have urged all tourists who were staying in and around the Ocean
Club resort on May 3 to come forward in the hope that new witnesses would be
"We would appeal to any UK
residents who have still not been spoken to by British police and who were in
Praia da Luz on May 3 to please come forward and to
contact their local police or the confidential phone line based in Spain,"
said Clarence Mitchell, the official spokesman for Kate and Gerry McCann.
"We know for instance that there are a number of British people who were
staying in or around the Ocean Club when Madeleine was abducted and who have
not yet been interviewed by British police," he said.
Holiday firm Mark Warner is understood to have forwarded a list of all their
guests and staff who were at the Algarve
resort during the week of Madeleine's disappearance to Leicestershire police,
who are co-ordinating inquiries in Britain on behalf of the Portuguese
But many tourists in Praia da Luz booked their
holidays independently of any travel group and some of their identities are
still not known.
The task has been made more difficult by the failure by Portuguese police to
question everyone staying at the resort.
Meanwhile one element of the investigation will fall into the hands of Jacqui
Smith, Home Secretary, this weekend, who has 48 hours to decide whether
permission will be granted for the Portuguese police to re-interview the
McCanns and their friends.
It has been reported that Portuguese authorities are ready to send the Home
Office a "letter of appeal" with a list of questions to put to
members of the so-called Tapas Nine - the name given to the McCanns and the
seven friends who dined with them on the night of Madeleine's disappearance.
News of Mr McCann's Scot of the Year 2007 nomination was played down by
Clarence Mitchell, the family's spokesman.
"Of course he would be flattered and buoyed by the support but this has
come about entirely for the wrong reasons," he said.
"The only thing that would make Gerry happy is to be reunited with his
daughter," he said.
Readers of the Sunday newspaper have been given one week to vote online for the
Scot who has "inspired us most through the past year".
"Whether they are recognised stars in their field or people who have been
thrust into the limelight by events, we want to hear about them," the
paper's website says.
Other suggested candidates include Gordon Brown, Scotland football coach Alex
McLeish, who resigned after the team failed to qualify for Euro 2008 and John Smeaton, the baggage handler who helped foil a terrorist
attack on Glasgow airport.