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Post Office defends chief executive's £600,000 pay package amid union criticism

Published 04/08/2016

Chief executive Paula Vennells is paid £600,000, according to accounts released by the Post Office
Chief executive Paula Vennells is paid £600,000, according to accounts released by the Post Office

The Post Office has defended the £600,000 pay package of its chief executive after accusations of "over generous" pay for its bosses.

The Unite union said the postal organisation had "sneaked out" its annual accounts, showing the pay for Paula Vennells as well as the £500,000 paid to finance director Al Cameron.

Unite officer Brian Scott said: "This is another example of fat cats being rewarded for a catalogue of failure.

"The whole parlous state of the organisation needs to be urgently investigated by the new business secretary Greg Clark.

"This is compounded by the non-executive directors receiving a pay boost from £40,000-a-year to £45,000, and, in one case, to £50,000. The recently appointed chairman, Tim Parker, receives more.

"The Post Office sneaked out its annual accounts without any fanfare via its website."

The Post Office said in a statement: " Our annual report and accounts show that we are making good progress towards building a financially sustainable Post Office that will continue to deliver essential services to communities all over the UK long into the future.

"We halved our losses before subsidy in 2015/16 from £57 million to £24 million and reduced financial support required from government by £50 million.

"We have a robust strategy to simplify our business, reduce costs and risks, and address the evolving needs of our customers in a highly competitive marketplace.

"All salary and payments to our senior directors are subject to full and appropriate governance.

"A significant proportion of executive pay is made up of incentive payments reflecting the improved performance of the business. The chief executive's salary has not changed since 2011.

"We have published the annual report and accounts on our website, as well as put a press release about it on our online media centre and published an article on our One website."

Unite is preparing for a strike ballot of its 860 managerial members at the Post Office over redundancies, pension scheme closure and franchising of Crown offices.

The Communication Workers Union is also balloting for industrial action over jobs and closures.

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