POSTAL workers were very angry when they demonstrated outside the London Stock Exchange at 7.00am yesterday morning, on the day that Royal Mail shares were sold off fast and cheap to the rich city wheelers and dealers to make vast profits through speculation.
On the demonstration, John Simpkins, Division Rep for London CWU, told News Line: ‘We are here to demonstrate about the announcement that has been made to float the stocks of Royal Mail, we think that it is a disgrace!
‘It is the same big investors that have made their fortunes out of the privatisation of water, gas, electric and National Rail that are making money out of this.
‘We will definitely have a presence on the FBU firefighters National Demonstration on October 16.
‘We need to get together with all the other unions and have a general strike.
‘The leadership of the Labour Party said that they are not going to abide by the conference decision to renationalise if elected. That is a disgrace!’
Meanwhile inside the London Stock Exchange, Royal Mail shares rose more than 38% to 456p at the start of conditional dealings.
Some 10 million shares were traded in the first 30 seconds when the market opened. The hugely oversubscribed sale was initially priced at 330p per share, valuing the Royal Mail at £3.3bn. The value rose £1.1bn after trading began. Shares will officially be listed next Tuesday.
Billy Hayes, general secretary of the CWU, said on the demonstration: ‘We are here to protest against the privatisation of Royal Mail, it has been an outrage!
‘It has rewarded city speculators and hurt the general public.
‘The Emir of Kuwait will have more say in Royal Mail than the Queen.
‘The Labour Party would have stopped the privatisation of Royal Mail if they had pledged to re-nationalise it, they should have done more to defend Royal Mail.’
Martin Walsh, London Divisional Rep, said: ‘The ballot results for strike action are out on October 16 and we are going to get a massive yes vote.
‘This will be the biggest postal strike since 1971.
‘We are going to stop outsourcing, franchising, a two-tier workforce and the destruction of the industry.
‘This is going to be a landmark dispute unlike any other, where we beat the impact of privatisation, and this is a struggle that we are going to win.’
Jim Kirwan, London Regional Secretary, said: ‘The ballot results are in on October 16 and we expect a massive, massive yes vote on a national basis.
‘The first action will be a national demonstration, the scale of which has not been seen for some time in this country.’