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Victor Lewis-Smith's column: BT WON'T COMMUNICATE.

Byline: Victor Lewis-Smith

SINCE asking you to send in questions for the interview I'm trying to set up with BT chairman Sir Christopher Bland, I've been inundated with mail. Sadly, I can't yet pose your questions because the highly-paid but cowardly chairman still refuses to speak to Mirror readers, and to answer the complaints that many of you clearly have about his company's lamentable service.

Yet undaunted I shall keep contacting Tim Johns (BT's press officer) every week on your behalf and ask him to arrange a meeting, but don't hold your breath. Unless you've got hiccups, in which case holding your breath would be a very good idea.

Of course, fat cats who refuse to speak to Mirror readers are nothing new at BT. Remember Sir Peter Bonfield, their recently-departed chief executive who was always too busy to speak to us? Well, in a survey published this week of a hundred fat cats who've been paid the most while delivering the least, he came top, with remuneration of pounds 3.1million, while unlucky BT shareholders got a return of minus 71.4 per cent (along with pounds 30billion of debts amassed while he was in charge).

Why have Bonfield and Bland always been too busy to speak to us? Perhaps they spend all day on the phone to their stockbrokers, investing their vast earnings. The old saying about "pay peanuts, get monkeys" works the other way round too, you see.

Pay truffles? Get pigs.

CAPTION(S):

COWARD: Bland
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Title Annotation:Features
Publication:The Mirror (London, England)
Date:May 24, 2003
Words:249
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