A CONCERNED MP has called on the Minister for Post Offices to make her position clear on the Westminster Government’s plans to privatise Royal Mail.
In a letter to Jo Swinson, MP for East Dunbartonshire, Gregg McClymont urged her to address the uncertainty caused by the plans.
Mr McClymont, MP for Cumbernauld, Kilsyth and Kirkintilloch East, has welcomed the news that the £450 million DVLA contract to provide driving licenses and tax discs to the public has been awarded to The Post Office.
However, he has warned there still remains a major threat to the future of local post offices.
He said: “Jo Swinson claims to be a campaigner for local post offices yet she is Post Office Minister at a time when her Government is pushing through the privatisation of Royal Mail.
“Privatisation will inevitably lead to worse service for the public and will only benefit shareholders in the long run.
“At a public meeting in August in Lennoxtown it was clear that the proposed privatisation was causing a great deal of uncertainty.
“If Jo Swinson really cares about maintaining local post offices in the long-term then she must refuse to support the Tory privatisation agenda.”
However, Ms Swinson, Minister for Employment Relations, Consumer and Postal Affairs, hit back. She said: “Given that Mr McClymont apparently cares so strongly about our post offices, it’s a shame he didn’t fight for them when Labour went on a closure rampage.
“I’d remind him that between 2001 and 2010 his party shut almost 500 post offices in Scotland including five in my constituency.
“It’s this Coalition Government that recognises the Post Office as a much-loved, vital part of our community. That’s why we’re investing more than £1bn in the Post Office network.
“Royal Mail has agreed a 10 year deal to keep using post offices after privatisation.
“Post Office Limited is a separate company, so who owns the Royal Mail will not affect the viability of village post offices.”
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