McDonnell Joins Calls to Strip Green of Knighthood Over BHS

  • Labour finance spokesman links honor to Commons appearance
  • BHS workers’ rights show importance of EU, McDonnell Says

U.K. Labour finance spokesman John McDonnell has called for former BHS owner Philip Green to be stripped of his knighthood if he refuses to appear before a parliamentary committee this week to discuss the collapse of the retailer.

“The fact he feels he can threaten to subvert parliament is an insult to the British public,” McDonnell wrote in an article for the Observer newspaper on Sunday. “If he refuses to come before parliament, Green should be stripped of his knighthood.”

John McDonnell

Photographer: Chris Ratcliffe/Bloomberg

McDonnell said the demise of BHS also showed why Britain must stay in the European Union to ensure workers’ rights are protected. Green is due to appear before the Work and Pensions Committee on Wednesday. He has called for the resignation of Frank Field, the chairman leading the inquiry into the collapse of the retailer who expressed a view on how much Green should contribute to cover BHS’s pension obligations.

McDonnell’s view was echoed by Conservative Business Minister George Freeman, who told the Times last week that Green should lose his knighthood if there was evidence he had misled the public or if fraud had been committed.

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