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PPI Claim News - 18/1/2010

Bank charges: Billy Bragg's protest against the bankers

Musician Billy Bragg has vowed not to pay his income tax until the government caps bankers' bonuses.

In a letter to the chancellor Alistair Darling the 52-year-old singer and political activist said he was not prepared to keep paying the "excessive bonuses" which were handed out to bankers at the Royal Bank of Scotland.

Bragg pledged to withhold his income tax contribution from the end of January unless the government capped the RBS payouts at £25,000.

RBS is 84 per cent owned by the taxpayer after the government stepped in to save the fledging bank with a string of bail-outs.

But despite the public rescue in 2009 the bank is expected to pay up to £1.5 billion in bonuses to its investment bankers, which Bragg believes is unacceptable.

In an internet campaign started on the social networking site Facebook, he wrote: "What I don't understand is why, now that we taxpayers are the majority shareholders of these banks, we seem totally powerless to curb their excessive bonus culture?"

Bragg is no stranger to political activism and has regularly used his status to draw attention to corruption or incompetence. His first hit album was aptly titled Talking with the Taxman about Poetry.

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