Friday, November 14, 2008

Honest John MP: Misses Transport and GPO Debates

Oh my word! What a coincidence. Just as I wonder out loud whether John Leech has been missing a lot of other commitments recently along comes my They Work For You update with the following interesting exchange (TWFY link):

Photo of James Purnell James Purnell
(Secretary of State, Department for Work and Pensions; Stalybridge & Hyde, Labour)
| Hansard source | Video match this

We have yet to award the contract to the Post Office. Clearly, we will be in discussions and negotiations about that, and that is the right way to proceed. We have made it clear that we will be awarding the contract, which will give people certainty between now and 2015, but the hon. Gentleman is right to say that we should recognise the work that sub-postmasters and sub-postmistresses do. I am sure that he will join me in congratulating George Thomson on the work that he has done as general secretary of the National Federation of SubPostmasters, along with all of his members.

Photo of Gerald Kaufman Gerald Kaufman
(Manchester, Gorton, Labour)
| Hansard source | Video match this

May I thank my right hon. Friend for listening to his fellow Labour Members of Parliament and for deciding to extend a service that was created by a Labour Government? We have spoken on behalf of our constituents, who include sub-postmasters, and we hope that today's decision will foreshadow greater strength and more services in our post offices. May I thank him on behalf of the 8,000 of my constituents who are Post Office card account holders—and on behalf of the 6,000 constituents in the constituency of Manchester, Withington, whose Member of Parliament is once again absent from discussion of these matters?

Photo of James Purnell James Purnell
(Secretary of State, Department for Work and Pensions; Stalybridge & Hyde, Labour)
| Hansard source | Video match this

My right hon. Friend made a very good speech on this matter on Monday, and indeed pointed out that Mr. Leech was not present then. It is a shame that he is not here now, but I am sure that there is a good reason for that. However, my right hon. Friend is absolutely right to say that it was this Government who created the Post Office card account, and that is why we are so strongly committed to it.

So that's skipping his homework at a vital transport debate AND skipping his lessons at TWO vital Post Office Card Account debates. As James says, there may be a good reason for that, other than his general ennui and drifty uselessness. Let us know.

Which actually leaves him with which promises and campaigns exactly where he is doing his duty for Manchester Withington? Certainly calls into question his runaway humbuggery (Hamburgery? Hamburglary?) in calling for a protest outside Gerald's advice session.

Note to John: While you were not looking the Heart of the Community saving Post Office Card Account has itself been saved. Hurrah!

It really does look like he has given up completely.

Here, for old times sake are 41 count 'em mentions on his carbon neutral web presence, or perhaps that should be renamed "PRETENCE"? Here's one of the latest PO news along with a picture of what the Lib Dems sometimes refer to as "Campaigning" and the rest of us call "Photo Opportunities (hanging around with your good for nothing mates)".

Meanwhile Honest John's Web Pretence on allotments is humming along nicely, possibly thanks to the manure he's spreading, er liberally.

AVOID SAYING TO HONEST JOHN: "What are you doing Post Office?" Any other thoughts on what not to say? "Missed Any Debates For Me Lately?", with apologies to Miss Janet Jackson.

You're welcome to use the comments to file your suggestions.

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