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Keep your public promise on fees, UCU tells Liberal Democrats as they reach 'make your mind up time'

30 November 2010 | last updated: 11 December 2015

As Vince Cable hints at a u-turn, UCU rubbishes claims that entering coalition invalidated promises to oppose fees increase

UCU today sent a simple message to the Liberal Democrats as they deliberate about how to vote on the future of university funding. The union said the party's MPs should stick to the pledge they made before the election to vote against any rise in university fees.
UCU said the general public would not accept any other option after Liberal Democrat election candidates made it clear to voters that they would vote against a fee rise when campaigning for their vote. The union also rubbished recent claims from some leading Liberal Democrats that the fact the party went into coalition government was an excuse to break their promise.
The union's advice to the Liberal Democrats comes as Vince Cable hinted he may not vote for the fee increase and the Office for Budget Responsibility warned that the government's reforms would increase the national debt.
UCU general secretary, Sally Hunt, said: 'It's make your mind up time for politicians on the fees issue and we have a simple message to the Liberal Democrats – stick to the promise you made the country about opposing an increase.
'Recent claims from some Liberal Democrats that entering a coalition government allows their MPs to renege on the promise to vote against a fees increase is nonsense. A coalition government was always a likely outcome during the election, an outright win for the Liberal Democrats never was. Manifesto promises cannot just be torn up after the election.'