RMT union slams Chris Grayling 'specialist in failure' ahead of select committee questioning

RMT union slams Chris Grayling 'specialist in failure' ahead of select committee questioning

Transport Secretary Chris Grayling has been criticised over several issues

Monday, January 22, 2018

The RMT union has launched an angry attack against the transport secretary ahead of his appearance before a committee of MPs, branding him a "specialist in failure."

Chris Grayling will be questioned today (January 22) by the Transport Select Committee over the controversial decision not to go ahead with three rail electrification schemes.

Instead of electrifying the Cardiff-Swansea route, the Midland mainline and tracks in the Lake District, Grayling opted for bi-mode trains, which switch between electricity and on-board diesel power.

The select committee will be asking Grayling to outline the reasoning that underpins his decision, and the RMT, which has repeatedly locked horns with Grayling over the Southern Rail crisis, has said the full "charge sheet" against the minister should be taken into account during the hearing.

The union claimed this includes Grayling's failure to address problems with the Southern franchise, failure to take action over Carillion, not taking part in serious talks with trade unions over disputes, "bailing out" the East Coast Main Line and not stopping the  "decimation" of bus services.

The union's general secretary Mick Cash said: "Many, including plenty from Chris Grayling's own side, are asking just how long this can go on?

"RMT welcomes the fact that Mr Grayling is being called in to account for his actions over cancelled rail electrification projects but that is only one issue where he should be under forensic investigation.

"RMT has tried repeatedly to engage with the transport secretary. He has failed repeatedly to listen to the genuine concerns of front-line transport workers.

"That is a major reason why he continues to blunder on from one crisis to the next."

He added: "The continuing failures on Britain's transport services shame the nation and the buck stops with the Transport Secretary."