Pimlico Plumbers boss Charlie Mullins has defended sacking some of his staff for wanting to stay on furlough and not return to wok after his company 'pulled the plug' on the Government scheme.
The controversial CEO sparked anger on social media early on in lockdown after accusing employees of 'abusing furlough.' Appearing on This Morning, he said: "Within five minutes of us explaining that the government was going to pay 80% of their wages, they were out of the door.
“And some of them there was no reason to go, they didn’t have any health issues, they didn’t have vulnerable people at home, all they were interested in was getting money for nothing.”
Charlie returned to the show on Thursday, days after it was revealed that he'd sacked staff who didn't want to return to work after furlough, with host Ruth Langsford revealing that 10 had been made redundant and 10 had their contracts terminated.
But, speaking to Ruth and husband Eamonn Holmes, from his luxury villa in Marbella, he defended his actions saying: "We can't sack anyone for being on furlough and that's not what we've done.
"We had a situation where a lot of people don't want to come back to work because they're comfortable at home...for all the reasons they're happy to stay at home.
"And I think they've been milking the system and I'm saying 'times' up'; I think we need to put this behind us and get people back into the workplace.
"I'm not going to start paying their National Insurance or pension contributions and I just feel it's the wrong way to go about it, so we've pulled the plug on it completely."
Defiant, he blasted: "The problem for some people is that their is office is too far away from the beach!
"We need to stop this stupid culture of people thinking they can sit at home and get paid for it."
Just like last time, Charlie's stance did not go down well with This Morning viewers at home. One tweeted: "The cheek and lack of awareness of Charlie Mullins saying people shouldn’t get paid for lazing around at home from his mansion in Marbella is astounding - deserves every bit of the pasting he’s getting on Twitter right now.."
In agreement, another blasted: "Some of us have no choice about being furloughed, it’s our employers making that decision every month. Why doesn’t Charlie Mullins help the economy by holidaying in the UK? Such a hypocrite!!"
His forthright opinions have earned some praise though, with another viewer reacting: "I have some empathy for #CharlieMullins here but it would have been better if he'd been speaking from #Skegness."