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Uber must ‘listen to grave concerns’ says MP, following London licence ‘ban’

PUBLISHED: 09:15 25 September 2017 | UPDATED: 09:15 25 September 2017

Transport for London says it has informed Uber that it

Transport for London says it has informed Uber that it "will not be issued with a private hire operator licence". Yui Mok/PA Wire

Teresa Pearce has said Uber ‘must play by the rules’

Uber has been warned it ‘cannot flout the law’ by Erith and Thamesmead’s MP as it plans to appeal the decision to not renew its London licence.

TfL said the app would not be issued with a new licence as it was “not fit and proper” to operate in the capital, on the grounds of “public safety and security implications”.

Allowing users to book cars using their smartphones, there are around 40,000 drivers across the capital, and the news sparked immediate backlash from passengers.

A petition, Save Your Uber London, has been declared the “fastest growing in the UK this year” by change.org, after it gained 500,000 signatures within 24-hours of the news being broken on Friday.

As of Monday morning, the petition has more than 735,000 signatures.

Following the news, Teresa Pearce, MP for Erith and Thamesmead, said: “Uber is an incredibly popular app and their fares and service are often cheap and convenient. However no matter how big, powerful or popular a company is it cannot flout the law and Uber stands accused by the police of failing to properly handle serious allegations of rape and sexual assault of passengers. There are also concerns over the vetting of drivers and earlier this month 1,000s of the background checks on Uber drivers were declared invalid by TFL.

“Uber have obviously announced that they will appeal the decision, but I hope that at a minimum this action will make Uber listen to the grave concerns raised about their business model and show that they must play by the rules and put customer safety and security above profit.”

Uber’s general manager in London Tom Elvidge claimed users of its app “will be astounded by this decision”.

He said: “By wanting to ban our app from the capital, Transport for London and the mayor have caved in to a small number of people who want to restrict consumer choice.

“If this decision stands, it will put more than 40,000 licensed drivers out of work and deprive Londoners of a convenient and affordable form of transport.

“To defend the livelihoods of all those drivers, and the consumer choice of millions of Londoners who use our app, we intend to immediately challenge this in the courts.”

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