The union representing Thomas Cook shop staff is calling a government committee to investigate if the government was “negligent” in failing to safeguard the company.
The Transport Salaried Staffs’ Association has written to Rachel Reeves MP, chair of the Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy Committee, to “look into reports in the media that the Turkish and Spanish governments were prepared to make substantial investments to support the company”.
The union’s general secretary Michael Cortes said: “The British public deserves to know whether our government was negligent in not acting to safeguard the future of Thomas Cook and its employees.”
He said in his letter: “Yesterday I spoke to the business secretary Andrea Leadsom, and pressed her for an explanation of the events leading to the collapse of the business.
“Unfortunately, what she told me appears to be totally at odds with what has been reported in the media.
“It’s obviously important to ascertain whether the company could have been rescued.
“I would, therefore, be very grateful if your committee would look into reports in the media that the Turkish and Spanish governments were prepared to make substantial investments to support the company.
“However, it seems the refusal of the British government to do so meant that the rescue attempt failed.
“I have to say that when I spoke with Andrea Leadsom yesterday her version of events were, at best, sketchy and lacking in detail.
“I put it to her that if Thomas Cook was as dead a duck as she implies why was a private investor, in the shape of Fosun, looking to invest £450 million to keep Thomas Cook afloat.
“I’m sure that were your committee to look into this, with your power to cross-examine ministers, we would have a far better understanding of whether the British government could have saved Thomas Cook, 9,000 jobs in the UK and not inconvenienced 150,000 people who were enjoying their holidays.
“Clearly the British public deserves to know whether our government was negligent in not acting to safeguard the future of Thomas Cook and its employees.”
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