Politicians in Dundee warmly welcomed news that the Post Office is to retain their card account in house.
Dundee City Councillor Jim Barrie, who will stand for the SNP in Dundee West at the General Election, said: “I am delighted at the news that the card account is to be retained with the Post Office.
“This will safeguard the remaining Post Offices in Dundee and prevent a further half dozen closures in the city.”
Dundee East MP Stewart Hosie said: “We campaigned strongly for the Post Office Card Account to be retained with the post office. This victory is down to the pressure exerted on the UK Government by the SNP and other parties and by DC Thomson & Co Ltd.
“In making their decision, Ministers were clearly aware of the need to avoid any further trauma in the Post Office network after the closure of 2,500 Post Offices.”
The Post Office Card Account is a basic cash account operated by the Department for Works and Pensions that can only receive welfare, state pensions and tax credit deposits.
Four million people have these accounts and the contract is up for renewal in 2010. There are up to eight million people in the UK who do not have a bank account and many of them use card accounts instead, but because they cannot pay their bills by direct debit they face higher charges for gas, electricity and water.
Commenting on the decision, Stewart Hosie said: “This decision is to be welcomed by all who support Post Offices as providers of a key service.”