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01/05/2014 - Royal Mail scandal: Unions to blame says Cable!

Vince Cable, The Secretary of State for Business has been defending his decision to sell Royal Mail for just over three pounds a share, despite many advance warnings it was too cheap. By the end of the day, the same shares were worth £4.55, meaning the taxpayer lost £750m. Cabroyal maille and Business Minister Michael Fallon have been appearing before the Business, Innovation and Skills Select Committee.

On the face of it you might think Cable would have a tough time especially when you consider that hedge funds and Tory donors were major beneficiaries of the sale which the majority of the public opposed. Cable spun into action (and we mean spun!) by blaming the Unions rather than himself! Those pesky Unions had made him sell it cheap to government buddies and spivs. Back in the real world no one believes him.

CWU general secretary Billy Hayes said: “For Cable and Fallon to continue to claim industrial action was the main reason they sold Royal Mail at a low share price is utterly ridiculous. The Committee heard that ‘relatively few days had been lost to industrial action’. The shares were 24 times oversubscribed so for the government to say they wouldn’t have been able to get a good deal for the taxpayer is wrong.

“I agree with the select committee that all ‘right minded people’ know Cable made a massive error when sanctioning the sale of Royal Mail at the price he did. It shows either that he’s completely incapable or was downright careless with this public institution. It’s clear Cable needs to go – this is a man who lost the taxpayer a billion pounds. A postal worker who lost a valuable item would be sacked and the same standard needs to apply to Mr Cable – he can’t carry on as Secretary of State."

Pat Harrington, general secretary of Solidarity, said:

"I actually think Billy Hayes is being too charitable to Cable and the rest. I see the Royal Mail sell-off as a deliberate and intentional way of moving public money into private hands. We were swindled. I don't think it was an error."