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Horizon Settlement: Future Governance of Post Office Ltd

Part of the debate – in the House of Commons at 4:48 pm on 19th March 2020.

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Photo of Paul Scully Paul Scully Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy), Minister of State (London) 4:48 pm, 19th March 2020

That is why the CCRC is looking at those cases and will therefore be able to refer them to the Court of Appeal accordingly. That option is now available, which would not normally be available without the CCRC looking at those cases.

I look forward to speaking at the Select Committee hearing that is due to be held on 24 March, covid-19 notwithstanding. The Government continue to proactively challenge the Post Office to restore and strengthen its relationship with postmasters and to deliver the terms of the settlement. On Monday, I met the Post Office’s chair and CEO to seek assurance on the steps being taken. Alongside my officials, I will work to make sure that we hold them and their governance to account.

In terms of future governance, the Post Office is a large, complex and diverse business, so it is important that it is allowed the commercial freedom to compete in the challenging markets it operates in. It must, however, be accountable to the Government for its decisions, as we have heard. Following the litigation and the subsequent settlement, the Government will monitor the Post Office closely to ensure that it delivers on its commitments to improving the organisational relationship with postmasters.