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Umunna: Need more competition in banking sector

The shadow business secretary Chuka Umuunna has confirmed the reports that Labour is to call for a cap on the size of British banks in an attempt to increase competition in the domestic market:

Umunna: Should follow Mandela's example on politics

The shadow business secretary Chuka Umunna has told ITV's The Agenda programme that politicians should follow Nelson Mandela's example "and try and do politics differently in this country."

It wasn't just about what he stood for and what he achieved but it was also the way he did his politics.

I think we have a big problem in the way that we do politics in this country.

In many respects it's broken, it's too adversarial, it's very yah-boo, it's a bad thing sometimes to acknowledge agreement.

In some senses the easy part is celebrating what he did, I think the challenge he sets for us as politicians is actually to follow his example and try and do politics differently in this country.

– Shadow business secretary Chuka Umunna

Mr Umunna was joined on the panel by Sun columnist JaneMoore, comedian Dom Joly and Countryfile presenter Julia Bradbury.

The Agenda with Tom Bradby is on ITV at 10.35pm.

Get involved in the debate during the show on Twitter by following @agendaitv and using the hashtag #theagenda.

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Umunna: Taxpayer 'shortchanged' by Royal Mail sale

The Government is selling Royal Mail short by "pressing ahead" with its current sale, despite selling it at a "huge undervalue", the shadow business secretary said.

Chuka Umunna told Daybreak Royal Mail was valued at "between £2.6-3.3 bn" and endorsed by City brokers.

He warned the sale was becoming "a dream" for City speculators but a nightmare for the taxpayer.

Royal Mail flotation is 'politically motivated fire sale'

Labour's shadow business secretary Chuka Umunna said the Government was selling off the Royal Mail to make amends for George Osborne's "failed plan":

Ministers are pushing ahead with this politically motivated fire sale of Royal Mail to fill the hole left by George Osborne’s failed plan.

This is taking place despite opposition from a huge coalition including the Conservative Bow Group, the Countryside Alliance, the National Federation of Subpostmasters, the cross party BIS Select Committee as well as Royal Mail employees themselves.

The Government has not addressed the huge concerns which remain on the impact the Royal Mail sale will have on consumers, businesses and communities, but ministers are ploughing on regardless.

– Chuka Umunna

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Umunna: We're going to take a hit over policy reform

Shadow business secretary Chuka Umunna has rejected suggestions a cut in union funding would mean financial meltdown for Labour.

Speaking to the BBC Radio 4 Today programme, he said: "For us as parties, we've fundamentally got to change the way we operate if we are to make our parties relevant in the 21st century.

Shadow business secretary Chuka Umunna. Credit: Press Association

"Part of that involves making sure we've got a better connection with our communities and our people. I think the trade union link gives us a huge head-start over other parties in that respect, because it gives us a direct link to three million working people.

"What we are seeking to do is to ensure that we've got a better link to individual members."

Mr Umunna added: "Undoubtedly, we are going to take a hit in terms of our finances, but that doesn't mean that it isn't the right thing to do."

Labour: Full explanation for Syria chemical deal needed

Chuka Umunna, Labour's shadow business secretary, has said the government has some "very serious questions to answer" over why it approved export licences of chemicals to be sent to Syria in January 2012.

"In light of the fact the Assad regime had already been violently oppressing internal dissent for many months by the beginning of 2012 and the intelligence now indicates use of chemical weapons on multiple occasions, a full explanation is needed," he added.

Shadow business secretary defends Ed Miliband

Speaking on the BBC's Newsnight programme, shadow business secretary Chuka Umunna defended the Labour leader.

Polls go up and down - what actually matters are votes. I know that under Ed Miliband's leadership, the Labour Party has put on an extra 2,000 councillors, importantly in marginal areas where we need to win back seats at the next General Election.

It's votes and members that actually matters. All of this relates to living standards. Ed started talking about the squeezed middle at the start of his leadership and everybody ridiculed him. This is the biggest issue facing our country now.

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