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Report highlights 'deplorable governance failures'

In a scathing report into the governance of the Co-operative Group, former City minister Lord Myners today said radical changes were necessary to return the group to profitability.

Read: Myners: 'No short cut to recover for the Co-op'

The report said the Group's present governance structure was "not fit for purpose" and highlights "deplorable governance failures" that led to the near collapse of the group. Lord Myners calls for:

  • A new "highly competent and qualified" Group Board with independent non-executive directors to lead and oversea the executive management teams.
  • Genuine co-operative values and principles to be protected in the future governance structure.
  • Member benefits should no longer be "deliberately restricted to a tiny and potentially quite unrepresentative body", but should be felt by the whole customer-owned organisation.

Myners: 'No short cut to recovery' for Co-op

Lord Myners has called for the Co-operative Group to make radical changes to restore group profitability, in a damning report in which he blasts some elements of the company for being "struck in denial" over its failings."

Read: Lord Myners lays out radical plans to save Co-op

I have no doubt that the Co-operative Group can over the next five years reverse a decline that started over 50 years ago. But I am less confident that it will choose to do so.

There is no short cut to recovery from its present weakened state. It will require retrenchment and some painful choices.

Financial health can only be restored through steady, step by step, rebuilding of the group's profitability and repayment of its excessive debt."


Lord Myners lays out 'radical' plans to save Co-op

Former City minister Lord Myners has laid out his plans for saving the Co-operative Group with a number of "radical" decisions he believes are needed to overhaul the a which last month reported annual losses of £2.5 billion.

Former City minister Lord Myners. Credit: ITV News
  1. Richard Edgar

'Enormous hostility' aimed at peer over Co-Op reforms

A general view of a Co-operative food store, in the Strand, central London.

The way in which the news of Lord Myners' resignation has been released is "symptomatic of the tumoil at the Co-Op.

The former City minister tended his resignation earlier this evening and that there was an agreement to release this information in an 'orderly way' tomorrow but somebody left the meeting and immediately leaked it to the press.

A similar tactic forced chief executive Euan Sutherland to walk out after details of his salary were leaked to the press last month.

There is "enormous hostility" directed at Myners and Sutherland, who are outsiders brought into help modernise the Co-Op's "catastrophic governance structure."

Lord Myners quits Co-Operative Group

File photo of Lord Myners Credit: Anthony Devlin/PA Wire

Lord Myners has quit the board of The Co-Operative Group following days of criticism over his plan to reform the beleaguered group of supermarkets, funeral homes and pharmacies.

Lord Myners 'not aware' of Whitehall figures making Libor requests

The Former City Minister Lord Myners has said that he is "not aware" of anyone at Whitehall putting pressure on the Bank of England to encourage banks to set Libor rates.

A memo disclosed by Barclays last night documenting a phone conversation with Paul Tucker, the deputy governor of the Bank of England, suggested he had hinted that senior Whitehall figures were pushing for this.

Lord Myners

Speaking on the BBC's Today programme, he said: "I can say quite categorically that I didn't speak to Paul Tucker or anybody at the Bank of England about the Libor rate-setting process."

He also appeared to take a swipe at the Labour Former Business Minister Baroness Vadera who said last night that she had "no recollection" of speaking to anyone at the Bank of England about rate rigging.

Lord Myners said "I'm not falling into the class of people that have no recollection". Listen to the interview here.