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Tories Hiding From Public Scrutiny After 'killing' Oakervee HS2 Review

3 November 2019

TSSA General Secretary, Manuel Cortes, has criticised Transport Secretary, Grant Shapps, and the Government after it emerged the Oakervee Review into High Speed 2 (HS2) will not be published before the general election on 12th December.

Cortes, whose union strongly supports the new high-speed rail project, said the Conservatives had overseen “a complete stitch up” of Douglas Oakervee’s Review.

The comments come after the Deputy Chair of the Report, Tony Berkeley, admitted on Twitter the Report was not finished but his role in it had ended.

He also complained there had been no opportunity to influence conclusions and that it would be ‘locked in the vaults of the DfT’ until after the election.

Commenting, Cortes said: “The Tories have killed the Oakervee Review into HS2. It's very worrying that its Deputy Chair, Lord Berkeley, has said that his role has come to an end but that the report hasn't yet been finished.

“He has also rightly complained that he won't now have the opportunity to influence its conclusions. This sounds like a complete stitch up by the Secretary of State and we must wonder what it is he wants to hide?

“Our union thought that there was no need to review HS2 in the first place. But frankly, we must just get on and build it and ensure this new rail network is extended all the way to Scotland.

“We are in Europe's slow rail lane as many other countries have had high-speed railways for decades. However, having set up the Oakervee Review, the least we can expect is for it to be properly concluded and for its results to be published in full.

“It appears that yet again this dreadful Tory government is running away from public scrutiny. This is simply not good enough.” 

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