Sell-off a rip-off

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The word “botched” in the 
context of the Royal Mail sell-off in Alistair Davidson’s letter (2 April) isn’t quite appropriate, and certainly doesn’t reflect what some might perceive as a sizeable rip-off.

The public was being told for a longish period that Royal Mail was a failing institution of state and required resuscitation through being dispatched into the less protected private sector.

Hardly had the electronic process blinked on the transfer than the viability of Royal Mail became instantly obvious. Its value rocketed.

Apparently, several prized interests, poised like well-informed financial vultures, pounced and had their best meal for many a long stock-market day.

It seems Standard Life was one of the quick-kill beneficiaries, buying low and selling high within days. A little later, the same company was warning that it could shift its centres southwards if Scotland chose independence in September.

Of course, this could all be coincidence, but the Unite union wanting names of the big beneficiaries from the Royal Mail sell-off is not alone in seeking more transparency here.

Ian Johnstone

Forman Drive