Coronavirus: Mayor of London Sadiq Khan accuses Boris Johnson of lying to MPs amid bitter dispute over TfL rescue | Political news

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Sadiq Khan accused Boris Johnson of lying to MPs after claiming that the mayor of the capital had “effectively bankrupted” Transport for London.

M. Johnson criticized his successor as mayor as an argument COVID-19[feminine[feminine financial support for TfL continues to rage.

Mr. Khan accused Downing Street of offering ‘misguided and draconian’ plans in exchange for a second coronavirus bailout.

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Ministers reportedly said government could take direct control of TfL

In a move that would be seen as a nuclear option, ministers have reportedly said the government could take direct control of TfL if Mr Khan does not agree to the government’s terms.

The mayor said the government wanted TfL to extend the £ 15 congestion tax to circular routes north and south, which would bring an additional four million Londoners to the area.

It has also been reported that TfL will have to raise its fares well above inflation, with ministers also insisting on removing free travel for those under 18.

In addition, Mr Khan said a new housing tax burden could be introduced in London whether residents use public transport or not.

Asked about the Prime Minister’s Q&A reports, Mr Johnson told MPs: ‘The current mayor of London effectively bankrupted TfL before the coronavirus hit and left a huge black hole in its finances.

“Any need to fill this deficit is entirely his responsibility, it is entirely his responsibility.

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Boris Johnson claims his successor ‘left a huge black hole’ in TfL’s finances

“Any increase in the congestion tax or any other measure taken to improve TfL’s finances is entirely the responsibility of the current bankrupt Labor mayor of London. ”

But Mr Khan fought back, writing on Twitter that the PM “lied”.

“Before COVID, I was fixing his mess at TfL – reducing the deficit by 71% since 2016,” he said.

“COVID-19 is the sole cause of TfL’s challenges. “

Mr Khan, who succeeded Mr Johnson as mayor in 2016, said earlier at a TfL board meeting that he intended to ‘stand firm and fight for a fair deal for Londoners ”.

“TfL only receives an additional six months of financial support, but with ill-advised and draconian terms that are unfair to London, would fall disproportionately on those who can least afford it, jeopardize our city’s economic recovery and contrast strongly with the support given to private railway operating companies ”, he added.

“This global pandemic will be with us for a while. We have asked for an 18-month support package to see TfL go through the immediate crisis and its aftermath, as it is uncertain how quickly tariff revenue will recover. ”

Labor shadow secretary of transport Jim McMahon said it was “extremely worrying” that TfL was offered an “over the cracks funding package” with “punitive terms”.

Pete Kavanagh, Unite’s regional secretary for London, accused ministers of “punishing poorer Londoners for the COVID-19 pandemic”.

“Londoners are facing a triple whammy with an increase in tariffs, an increase in council tax and a massive increase in congestion zone charges,” he said.

“Poorer Londoners, who are already struggling financially because of job loss or reduced income, will be the least able to afford the increases in fares, charges and taxes. dwelling. “



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