Sunday, 14 Jul 2024

Labour MP Sultana left red-faced after huge train delay blunder.

Zarah Sultana says 'not enough being done by my party'

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Labour MP Zarah Sultana last night blamed a delay to her travel plans on rail privatisation, only to later find out the train line was sat on had been renationalised in 2018. The Coventry South MP said she had been stuck on a train just outside London for three hours while on her way to a socialist rally in Leeds.

The London North Eastern Railway (LNER) train was stuck due to damage to the overhead wires.

Sharing a picture of herself looking sad on social media, Ms Zultana claimed that her travel problems had been caused by the decision to privatise the rail network.

She wrote on Twitter: “My train to Leeds for tonight’s Enough is Enough rally has been stopped just outside London for the last three hours.

“I’m sorry not to be there Leeds.

“Just another reminder that we need to bring rail into public ownership and make it fit for the future.”

However, the Labour MP was left red-faced after a representative for LNER highlighted that the Department of Transport was the owner of the train operator.

They responded to her message by saying: “I am sorry for the delay, Zarah.

“This was due to damage to the overhead electric wires meaning services could not move around Stevenage, but services are now on the move.

“On your other point, LNER is owned by the DfT after the franchise was handed back in 2018.”

They added: “You will be able to claim for delay repay compensation up to the cost of your ticket if you were delayed by 30 minutes or more.

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“If there is anything we can to help, please do get in touch.”

LNER took over running the East Coast Main Line at the end of June 2018 after the former franchise failed to secure a satisfactory level of services on its routes.

The Government is set to continue operating the line until 2025.

Ms Zultana is seen as one of the more radical left-wing MPs within the Labour Party.

She was a big supporter of Jeremy Corbyn and regularly appears alongside him at rallies.

The MP has repeatedly called for the nationalisation of rail, energy and water sectors.

She was elected to Coventry South for the first time in 2019 with a majority of just 401.

Her narrow majority means she is among Labour MPs whose seats are in danger at the next election.

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