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Manuel Cortes responds to rumours Humza Yousaf about to scrap BTP merger with Police Scotland

20 August 2018

Responding to a report in yesterday's Sunday Times that Justice Secretary, Humza Yousaf, is about to scrap the merger of British Transport Police (BTP) and Police Scotland (PS), TSSA leader Manuel Cortes said;

“If this is true, I’d like to thank Humza for having the political courage to review the disastrous decision by his predecessor to force a merger between BTP in Scotland with PS. Let's face it, neither force have ever thought that this would be viable, let alone deliver a safer railway.

“We now hope he’ll follow this through by binning the merger before it wastes further Police time and resources. I will be contacting Humza this week to find out what he plans to do with this unworkable proposed merger.

Of course, this proposal only came due to blinkered nationalist ideology. Our union fully supports the devolution of control over BTP in Scotland to the Scottish Justice Secretary and Holyrood. However, there is no need whatsoever to break up and merge BTP with PS for this to happen.

We really hope that now that Michael Matheson has moved from justice to transport, he won’t show the same obstinacy as he did over this merger when dealing with ScotRail's future. He simply needs to bring it back into public ownership if the improvements that passenger deserve and the investment in rail that Scotland's economy needs are to be realised. He must properly finish off what Humza started during as Transport Minister when he promised that a public sector ScotRail bidder would be in place before the current franchise runs out. He must grap this nettle.”


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