Friday, 4 February 2011

Pass the parcel: London parties playing politics with the Post Office

Letter in today's Leader:

The latest threat to our post office network from the planned privatisation of the Royal Mail by the Tory-Lib Dem coalition has revived some of the usual tit-for-tat name calling that passes for politics among the main parties.

The Tories believe that Labour are being hypocritical in their condemnation when so many post offices were closed during the last government's term. Quite right - who could forget the loud protests from our local MPs while their own government was wielding the axe.

But for the Tories to cry foul is equally hypocritical. What will Paul Rogers and John Bell do to oppose the Royal Mail sell-off, which unions and industry analysts alike believe will result in the closure of more post offices? The National Federation of Sub-Postmasters fears that the privatisation will weaken the post office network as a standalone organisation, making it impossible for many smaller post offices to stay open.

There is a whiff of hypocrisy about both parties, as they try to blame each other for destroying a vital community facility.

There is another way. One that revives and revitalises the post office as a community bank, as a people's bank. We as taxpayers have thrown billions at the banks and seen them spend large chunks of that money on bonuses rather than helping to stimulate the economy. By contrast, a People's Bank that provided loans to small businesses and first-time buyers to get on the housing ladder would make a positive impact on our communities.

People deserve answers to the problems they face rather than name calling and finger pointing from the big London parties.

Marc Jones


Admin Joe said...

One again Mark Jones misses the point. The future of the Post Office is not dependant upon the future ownership of the Royal Mail.

If Mark is so keen on saving the Royal Mail how come he hasn't been challenging the fact some council departments use TNT to deliver their mail? The council isn't exactly doing its bit.

The fact is Royal Mail is more expensive than other service providers and needs to be modernised. Unfortunately the unions have been very reluctant to support change and this is the inevitable consequence.

Plaid Whitegate said...

When I found out the council was using TNT for second-class mail, I approached the Finance Director Mark Owen. His response was that this was an all-Wales initiative and is saving £500,000 a year.
The unions and workers are modernising - I don't see management at the Royal Mail doing anything of the sort.
If you think the private sector is better, look at TNT in Holland where they are unable to guarantee delivery at all on a Sunday and a Monday.