Successful motion from Weir

Angus MP Mike Weir.
Angus MP Mike Weir.

Delegates at the SNP’s annual conference in Perth have overwhelmingly condemned Westminster’s privatisation of the Royal Mail.

They vowed to bring it back into public hands in an independent Scotland on a motion moved by Angus MP Mike Weir.

Speaking for the resolution at the weekend, SNP MP Mike Weir said a universal postal service is an “essential part of Scotland’s infrastructure”.

He added that a Yes vote in next year’s referendum, led by an SNP Government, would bring the Royal Mail back into public ownership.

Commenting on the vote Mr Weir said: “Our postal services are far too important to Scotland and crucial to small businesses and individuals, to simply be sold off on the cheap in the way Westminster has done.

“Delegates have sent out a clear message to people in Scotland – the SNP will not simply sit by and accept what Westminster has done. With a Yes vote next year, we will use the powers of an independent Scotland to bring the Royal Mail in Scotland back into public ownership. A reliable and reasonably priced mail service is essential to small businesses throughout Scotland and especially in areas such as Angus

“Just days after the privatisation went ahead we have already seen warnings that customers will pay the price with a rise in the cost of stamps. It is clear the only way for Scotland to have the postal service it wants and deserves is with a Yes vote next year. The SNP have pledged to act to maintain a universal six-day a week postal service in an independent Scotland and bring the Royal Mail back into public ownership where it belongs.”

Meanwhile, Mike Weir is taking part in an investigation by the All Party Parliamentary Group on Nuisance Calls which is seeking to find ways of dealing with the increasing problem.

Commenting after the first evidence session with representatives of the Telecoms and mobile telephone industries Mr Weir said it was imperative action be taken.

He said: “The level of nuisance calls is simply intolerable, and it is now no longer simply on fixed lines but also on mobile telephones. I regularly receive complaints from all over Angus on the issue.

“In their evidence to the group BT indicated their own Nuisance Line received 50,000 complaints per month from customers receiving such calls. I tackled them as to how many of these were from elderly or vulnerable consumers and, although they were unable to give figures, they conceded that a substantial number of complaints came from such customers. Whilst consumers have to be careful on what information they give to third parties, it is also imperative that telecoms companies take their responsibilities seriously. There is no single “silver bullet” to solve this problem and the solution will lie with a combination of regulation, action by the telecommunications industry and technical changes. Action is long overdue and hopefully this report and the private members bill being put forward by members of the group will make progress to tackling the problem.”