Mick Lynch has called out Tory transport minister Mark Harper for 'not telling the truth' amid ongoing strike action.
The union boss was speaking amid fresh travel disruption as the dispute over pay, jobs and conditions continues, with thousands of rail workers returning to the picket line for a five-day walkout.
Members of the Rail, Maritime and Transport union (RMT) at Network Rail and 14 train operators are staging two 48-hour strikes from Tuesday and Friday, while drivers in the Aslef union will strike on Thursday.
Lynch was speaking to Sky News, when he was asked about his claims that the Government had “torpedoed” negotiations with the union.
Harper said “that absolutely isn’t true” while speaking to the channel on Tuesday (January 3) – and now Lynch has said that Harper was wrong to deny the claims.
\u201cMick Lynch(RMT) - "We have woken up working people to the fact that they're being ripped off... right across our economy... we've put the govt & corporate Britain under pressure to give British workers a square deal & value for money for their labour"\n\n#KayBurley #BBCBreakfast\u201d
“He’s not telling you the truth” Lynch said, after being questioned about Harper’s comments.
“We had a document with the train operating companies that did not include driver-only operation. It was taken away for approval in Whitehall for the DFT. They inserted about eight or nine bullet points that completely undermined the negotiations. That was a direct intervention of government ministers. We know that to be true.”
Lynch added: “And if he’s saying that didn’t happen, he’s simply not telling you the whole truth… he can deny it all he likes, it doesn’t mean it’s not true.”
The union boss has been on telly more than ever over recent weeks as industrial action steps up, and in that time he’s found himself as the centre of an odd feud with Richard Madeley.