, 40 tweets, 15 min read Read on Twitter
This is possibly the most disingenuous piece of self-serving bullshit I have ever read:


Let’s remind ourselves what a High Court judge said about @NFSP_UK, shall we?

"It is obvious, in my judgment, that the NFSP is not remotely independent of the Post Office, nor does it appear to put its members’ interests above its own separate commercial interests….”
@NFSP_UK “… I do not consider that the NFSP can in these circumstances properly be considered to be independent, or to be acting in the interests of SPMs [Subpostmasters]…”
@NFSP_UK “[The Post Office’s Nick Beal]… gave evidence that is hard to reconcile with the actual documents themselves. He said that it was always the intention of the Post Office and the NFSP that the contents of the Grant Framework Agreement (“GFA”)…"
@NFSP_UK “…. made with the NFSP would be made public. I reject that evidence, which is contrary to the detailed confidentiality provisions within the GFA itself.”
@NFSP_UK “… Essentially those provisions can only have been drafted to give the Post Office the maximum control over information, and are, in my judgment, contrary to transparency….”
@NFSP_UK "The Post Office relied, in numerous places both in its evidence and in its submissions, upon the fact that the NFSP does not support the litigation….”
@NFSP_UK “… in its written Opening it submitted “it should be noted that the National Federation of Subpostmasters, which is the organisation which represents SPMs and their interests nationwide, does not support this action and does not endorse the factual premises of the Claims..."
@NFSP_UK “… Public support for a cause, or lack of NFSP support for the Claimants, does not cut much ice in court. It plays no part whatsoever in the outcome… I am entirely disinterested in whether the NFSP does, or does not, support the proceedings…”
@NFSP_UK “… It should also be noted that Mrs Van Den Bogerd [a Post Office director] also gave evidence that the NFSP has publicly supported the Post Office’s view that Horizon is robust…”
@NFSP_UK “… The Post Office therefore relies upon this support by the NFSP to support its stance in this litigation.”
@NFSP_UK “… the NFSP was only prepared to agree what amounted to an increase in its members’ potential compensation, if its own future was assured by the payment of substantial sums to it….”
@NFSP_UK “… I find that this shows that the NFSP put its own members’ interests well below its own, and I also find that the NFSP is not fully independent…”
@NFSP_UK “The GFA [NFSP Grant Funding Agreement] was negotiated by lawyers, at least on the Post Office’s side. The name of the Post Office’s solicitors, Bond Dickinson LLP, appears on the front page. ..”
@NFSP_UK "That is the same firm as represents it in these proceedings, although the name has changed since then due to a merger. It is stretching credulity to ask the court to believe that such a detailed confidentiality provision, with…"
@NFSP_UK “…. a breach of it by the NFSP being defined as an event of termination, would be drafted by a sophisticated legal team and included within the terms of the GFA if the intention was always that the whole…”
@NFSP_UK “… GFA would be made public. It is stretching credulity to ask the court to believe that such a detailed confidentiality provision, with a breach of it by the NFSP being defined as an event of termination…”
@NFSP_UK "would be drafted by a sophisticated legal team and included within the terms of the GFA if the intention was always that the whole GFA would be made public.”
@NFSP_UK "The GFA was provided on 20 December 2016. Its terms, in addition to the ones about confidentiality above, included the following provisions:..”
@NFSP_UK "5.7.2 not take any action or engage in any commercial activities which brings, or is likely to bring, POL's name or reputation into disrepute.”
@NFSP_UK "Mr Beal accepted that supporting the litigation could affect the reputation of the Post Office. It is therefore the case that were the NFSP to decide to support the litigation, which undoubtedly…”
@NFSP_UK " risks damaging the Post Office’s reputation if the Claimants were to win, the NFSP would not only put itself in breach of the terms of the GFA but face having grants “clawed back”, that is repaid by the NFSP to the Post Office.”
@NFSP_UK "The NFSP is not an organisation independent of the Post Office, in the sense that the word “independent” is usually understood in the English language.”
@NFSP_UK "The Post Office effectively controls the NFSP.”
@NFSP_UK Let’s be clear - the @NFSP_UK cannot support Postmasters’ claims about the reliability of Horizon because it is contractually prevented from doing so BUT…
@NFSP_UK It has never wanted to anyway, as their former General Secretary pointed out to MPs back in 2015.
(see my piece on this here: postofficetrial.com/2018/11/bates-…)
They would far rather a few Postmasters were thrown under a bus than publicly question the integrity of Horizon.
@NFSP_UK So let’s have a look at the language of the NFSP’s latest document (linked to at the top of this thread) and compare it with that judgment.

@NFSP_UK The NFSP says it is: "a professional trade association… and the only body recognised by PO to act on behalf of subpostmasters.”

The judge ruled: "The Post Office effectively controls the NFSP.”

The only body the PO allows to act for SPMs is controlled by the PO. Fair?

@NFSP_UK The NFSP says: "the fact that we receive funding from PO has never
stopped us negotiating the best possible deal for our members.”

The judge ruled the NFSP: "the NFSP put its own members’ interests well below its own”
@NFSP_UK Then comes the part of the NFSP circular which utterly stinks:
"Has the NFSP’s status as a trade association, funded by Post
Office Ltd, prevented it from supporting the Justice For
Subpostmasters Alliance?
No. The claims being brought…”
@NFSP_UK “… under the current litigation are historic cases and almost of all of them pre-date the Grant Framework Agreement; at the time, the NFSP was a trade union funded by member subscriptions.”

A totally irrelevant statement. It has never been prevented from supporting the JFSA...
@NFSP_UK … it has specifically and deliberately chosen not to do so.

@NFSP_UK The NFSP circular continues: "Why is the NFSP not supporting the claimants?
Most of the cases date back to the early 2000s - before the NFSP became a trade association. Some of the claimants contacted the NFSP…”
@NFSP_UK “… and we offered support and advice at that time. Many chose to take their own courses of action and act independently, including those who pursued a
legal route. However, we have never tried to stop subpostmasters getting
involved in the group litigation.”

What a relief!
@NFSP_UK How grand of the NFSP to boast about the fact it has never actively tried to stop Subpostmasters from seeking justice! Is that really the best they can do?
@NFSP_UK And I wonder why, after receiving the NFSP’s support and advice (which was never to question the integrity of Horizon), the Subpostmasters chose to take their own courses of action.
@NFSP_UK I suspect the NFSP is not long for this world, but to come out with that statement, refusing to accept a High Court judge’s findings and trying to insinuate it did anything effective to help the people who were depending on it at the most desperate time of their lives…
@NFSP_UK … is precisely why this organisation has, in the eyes of a judge, no legitimacy whatsoever. Yet 8000 Subpostmasters rely on it to protect their interests. The NFSP has to recognise it has to take a significant amount of responsibility for what happened to its OWN MEMBERS...
@NFSP_UK … but instead, it comes out with utter crap like this


yet it still tries to pretend it has no culpability, it remains independent and will provide effective help for any Subpostmaster having problems with Horizon.

It can’t, and it won’t.

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