Shapps throwing good money after bad - Cortes comment after Govia awarded Thameslink

GTR Thameslink train©TheTransportGuide

TSSA General Secretary, Manuel Cortes, has lambasted the Government after it awarded Govia Thameslink a new national rail contract despite huge fines given to sister company, Southeastern.

 Govia, which is jointly owned by Go-Ahead and French company Keolis, was fined £23.5million just eight days ago for deliberately concealing more than £25 million of taxpayer funding which should have been returned to the Government.  Under the new contract with Thameslink, which will run for three years, Govia will pocket £8.8million in management fees per year, with the potential to make a further £22.9million linked to performance.

Commenting - TSSA leader Manuel Cortes said: “The Tories are taking us for a ride. Awarding a contract to Govia less than six months after they were stripped of their Southeastern contract for concealing taxpayer funding is a clear sign that Shapps is throwing good money after bad. It beggers belief that the Tories would give a contract to Govia after they concealed more than £25 million of taxpayer funding.

“Grant Shapps is an astonishing hypocrite, one minute claiming to be appalled by P&O breaking the law and the next turning around and awarding a new contract to Govia. When he cancelled their Southeastern contract Shapps described what had happened as an “appalling breach of trust” and said “the Government, and taxpayers, will not stand for it” – Yet, he’s clearly willing to stand for it now.

“Taxpayers would be better served by Shapps ending the shameless scandal of profiteering on our railways and bringing our railways back into public hands, so we can build a proper long-term recovery from Covid.”

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