Enterprise Minister Laurence Skelly rejected suggestions the Department for Enterprise had suggested cutting down postal services to a three-day week.

The claim came from Post Office chairman Julie Edge during the barrage of questions posed to her deputy Tanya August-Hanson in Tynwald on Tuesday.

The Department of Enterprise is the Post Office’s sponsoring department and one of its members, Lawrie Hooper (LibVannin, Ramsey) led the questioning.

Ms Edge tried to come to Ms August-Hanson’s support, stating: ’It would be more helpful if members actually supported Isle of Man Post Office going forward, with the changes that are required.

’It is quite clear from some of the questions today that there is a complete lack of understanding of what Isle of Man Post Office currently is and the services it provides.’

She added: ’Our sponsoring department members should be supporting IoMPO and looking at the right ways forward for the IoMPO.

’Some suggestions that have come forward, which the member can confirm, have been "cut it down to a three-day week". These have come from our sponsoring department. This is not support that the IoMPO currently needs.’

Mr Skelly called a point of order to say that his department had not recommended a three-day week. Others called for Ms Edge to apologise.

Ms Edge said: ’There have been suggestions. I perhaps should have been clearer that it has not necessarily come from the sponsor department.

’The sponsoring department does need to be on board with us and support us through this process.’

Two weeks ago, a deal was finally struck between the Post Office and the Communications Workers’ Union following a long-running dispute about pay and terms.

Union members voted to accept a revised offer from the Post Office that included a 1.5% increase on basic pay for posties, backdated to last year, and a 2% increase from April this year. Discussions on a new pay scale continue.