Chief executive of P&O Ferries, Peter Hebblethwaite, admitted to the company breaking the law by firing 800 workers without consultation.
The Dubai owned ferry company sacked 800 workers last week in favor of agency workers who will be paid £5.15 per hour, sparking outrage from the public and unions.
Protests by former P&O ferry workers who viewed the firing as a spit in their faces for the work they've done throughout their time with the company and the Covid Pandemic.
Boris Johnson himself last night called for Peter Hebblethwaite to resign, following the devastating Commons hearing yesterday.
Questions were asked about what if any warning ministers had received regarding the mass firing of 800 people, as Peter Hebblethwaite claimed that DP World, P&O's parent company has told the transport secretary Grant Shapps of their new business plan last November.
Peter Hebblethwaite faced intense questioning at the joint hearing of the transport and business committee, with business chairman Darren Jones asking how Peter Hebbelthwaite got to the position of chief executive saying “Are you in this mess because you don't know what you were doing, or are you just a shameless criminal?”
Peter Hebblethwaite apologized but said that “The Firm had otherwise no future”.
He later told the joint hearing: “There's absolutely no doubt we were required to consult with the unions and we chose not to do that”.
Andy McDonald MP interrupted by saying: “So you chose to break the law?”
Peter Hebblethwaite said: We chose not to consult, and we will compensate everyone”.
Andrew McDonald retorted with: “You can't just absent yourself from the legal frame work of the UK”.
Peter Hebblethwaite replied: “It was our assessment that the change was of short magnitude that no union could accept our proposals”.
He told MPs that he was saving the business, adding: “I would make that decision again”.
After the hearings concluded, the Liberal Democrats said: “ Shapps has some serious questions to answer about what if anything he knew about P&O's plans to illegally sack 800 workers”.