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Eilidh Whiteford, MP for Banff & Buchan

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ANGER AT LABOUR'S POST OFFICE PRIVATISATION PLANS

Wednesday, 25 February 2009

CUSTOMER SERVICE MUST BE THE FOCUS – WHITEFORD

As postal workers protest at Westminster over the UK Labour Government’s controversial plans to part-privatise Royal Mail, SNP Westminster candidate Eilidh Whiteford has condemned the news that controversial proposals to sell off part of the Royal Mail are to be introduced in the House of Lords.

With massive opposition to the proposals amongst Labour MPs, UK Ministers are relying on Conservative and Liberal Democrat votes to get the bill through when it comes to the House of Commons. The SNP is the only mainstream Scottish party who oppose the privatisation plans.

Commenting, Eilidh Whiteford said:

”Lord Mandelson is on a collision course with his own party over these privatisation plans, and thinly veiled warnings over Royal Mail’s pension fund will backfire badly. This debate is about Royal Mail, not blackmail, and if anything the situation with Royal Mail’s pension fund actually reinforces the case against bringing in a private partner.

”The pension situation will have to be dealt with regardless, and if that is left to a private firm it will mean job losses, service cuts and a deterioration in the working conditions of postal workers.

"A private partner will only be concerned with profit, and Royal Mail must not lose its social focus which would impact disproportionately in rural areas like North-east Scotland.

”By inviting in a private partner Lord Mandelson is opening the way for full privatisation, and he must be stopped in his tracks.”

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