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'A heck of a charge': Sangita Myska questions Mayor's suggestion that Tories are sacrificing public health for votes
29 August 2023, 15:49 | Updated: 29 August 2023, 15:51
As ULEZ expands across all London boroughs from today, Sangita Myska weighs up the Mayor of London's claims about Conservative views towards the roll out.
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Sangita Myska reminded listeners that it will cost £12.50 a day for non-compliant vehicles to be driven in the capital, and said that those on lower pay and shift workers will be "disproportionally hit".
Despite being asked by Labour Leader Keir Starmer to reconsider the implementation of the policy, "Sadiq Khan says it's right to plough ahead, because this is a public health issue and it is important to save the lungs of Londoners", she added.
Sangita played some audio of the Mayor of London on LBC, in which he said that "today is a landmark day for our city, because after today, 5 million more Londoners will breathe cleaner air".
He also brought up the case of nine-year-old Ella Kissi Debrah, believed to be the first person in the UK to have air pollution being listed as the cause of death on their death certificate.
Sangita continued: "The other thing that Sadiq Khan has said is that the government, this government, has weaponised air pollution, and he says that they are putting potential votes at the upcoming general election ahead of public health".
"It's a heck of a charge isn't it, that the government is willing to sacrifice your health for votes", she mused.
James O'Brien questions Sadiq Khan on ULEZ fees
"Do you believe that that's what the government is doing, or do you, like the Transport Secretary Mark Harper this morning on LBC, believe that this is an ill-timed, ill-judged expansion that will hit the poorest, hardest?" she asked her listeners.
She then played audio from Mark Harper this morning, telling Nick Ferrari at Breakfast that "despite what some people say- I don't have the powers to block it [ULEZ]".
He added that the Mayor's "own impact assessment makes it clear that it will have only a minor to negligible effect on air quality".
"It's not about air quality", he reiterated to Nick. "It's about raising money from hard-pressed Londoners, and that's why we don't support it, but we don't have the power to block it."
The Mayor was given the High Court green light and Prime Minister Rishi Sunak was prevented by lawyers from overruling the plans.
"Who is right?" Sangita asked.
Watch Again: Nick Ferrari is joined by Transport Secretary Mark Harper | 29/08/23