LETTERS : Union's role in Clause IV debate

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The Independent Online
Sir: Barrie Clement presents a picture of the T&G ("Clause IV battle catches Morris on left and right", 30 January) which none of us involved in the union would actually recognise. For a start, the T&G's achievement in restoring its financial stre ngth could not have been gained on the basis of a "left-right split". I find the reference to a "right-wing caucus" insulting and as inaccurate as the reference to my "left-wing backers". I was elected general secretary of the whole union, by the whole u nion.

Second, the use of anonymous sources - "it is understood" - to claim that I have entered into secret undertakings with Tony Blair's office in respect of Clause IV is damaging and disturbing. Whatever view we take in the debate, the Labour leader and I agree that Clause IV is a matter of principle in which there is no room for trade-offs or secret deals. I will continue to speak out on behalf of the T&G, and our own democratic procedures will determine which way we cast our vote.

Three years into my period of office as general secretary, I must make it clear that there is no vacancy for the post and there is no election campaign going on either - so Barrie Clement can put away his crystal ball.

Yours sincerely, Bill Morris General Secretary Transport and General Workers Union London, SW1