Government support runs dry leaving local businesses waiting

by samalhamdani on 25 February, 2021

Oldham Council is still waiting for the Government to provide further funding for local businesses which have been forced to close, despite the previous funding running out on February 15.

The Conservative Government will not be providing the money, which is a lifeline for local people, until they provide information on how long businesses are likely to have to keep their doors closed.

Leader of the opposition, and Shadow Cabinet Member with responsibility for coronavirus, Howard Sykes MBE said: “It is sadly unsurprising that the Conservative Government has left local businesses high and dry. For a Government which seems to be very good at organising coronavirus contracts for businesses owned by people they know, they seem incredibly bad at making payments for everyone else.”

Once the Government confirms what is happening for local businesses, and provides the promised funding, businesses will receive their payments without any need to reapply.

Local Liberal Democrat councillor Sam Al-Hamdani, who found out about the delays when following up on payments for local businesses in Lees, was furious. “It is absolutely shambolic. This Conservative Government provided money to cover up to a week ago, and then just left everyone to wait until they made another decision.

Councillor Sam Al-Hamdani outside one of the shuttered local shops

“It’s absolutely typical of the thoughtlessness which seems to be the hallmark of this Government. It doesn’t seem to be asking for much to get just basic competence, but it seems to be well beyond the capacity of this Government, and it’s people in Oldham who suffer because of it.”

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