mislead public over Post Office debate
Local MP, Edward Davey,
condemned the leader of the Conservative Cllr Edwards
today for trying to mislead the public by misrepresenting
his views on the future of the Post Office.
Commenting on Councillor Edwards' recent press release,
entitled "post offices betrayed", Edward Davey
Edwards should get his facts straight. The Liberal
Democrats first put forward a motion in Parliament way
back on 17 January to support post offices. The
Conservatives abstained on this motion."
"Last week in Parliament, the Conservatives proposed
a motion which praised the previous Conservative
Government for their record on Post Offices.* The Liberal
Democrats couldn't support that motion because during the
last Conservative Government, over 2000 Post Offices were
forced out of business."
"Frankly, I am
disappointed that the Conservative leader of Kingston
Council should try to mislead local residents in this
"It is clear that it is simply a case of
Johnny-come-lately Tories trying to trick the public into
voting for them in the forthcoming Mayoral elections.
Residents should be warned that only the Liberal
Democrats want to save the Post Office Network whilst the
Tories want to privatise it."
"Given these facts, I know residents won't be fooled
by the Tories' crocodile tears."
Over 3000 local
residents have already signed Edward Davey MP's
'Save Our Post Offices Petition.'
In March 1979
there were 21213 post offices in existence in the
UK, by March 1997 this had fallen to 19136. (This
information was supplied courtesy of the
Independent House of Commons Library.)
* The Conservative
Motion tabled by Mrs. Angela Browning (Member of
Parliament for Tiverton and Honiton) included the
phrase, "Applauds the determination of the
last Conservative Government to maintain a
national network of post offices." - It
would have been hypocritical for Liberal
Democrats to support this motion and would have
damaged their campaign to prevent the Post Office
Network from being privatised.
This unedited extract has been taken from
Hansard - 17/01/2000 edition Dr. Vincent Cable (Liberal
Democrat MP for Twickenham): I beg to move, "That this House deplores
the continuing decline under successive governments in
the sub-post office network which is contributing to
growing financial exclusion especially among pensioners
and other low-income groups; regrets the Government's
intention to press ahead with automated credit transfer
from 2003 which will lead to further large scale closures
and will deny freedom of choice; and urges the Government
to postpone automated credit transfer until the Post
Office has developed its own automated platform and, as
part of the Universal Service Obligation, require Post
Office Counters to maintain a sub-post office network
which satisfies broad social and economic as well as
narrow financial criteria of viability."