On 19 July, The National in Scotland carried an article about the House of Commons Public Accounts Committee report into the billions of pounds wasted by “mismanagement” of PPE contracts. It focused on PPE procurement by the Department of Health and Social Care (DHSC). The report found the UK Government was spending around £7 million every month to store the 3.9 billion unneeded items which it bought during the Covid pandemic. Some of these may have to be incinerated if no other use can be found for them. The Committee’s report also said there was “up to £2.7 billion of taxpayers’ money at risk” as a total of 176 contracts are currently in dispute, mainly over issues of quality. Damning conclusions on the awarding of these contracts also estimate that as much as £400 million in taxpayer cash could have been lost to fraud. The report also noted the unlawful “VIP lane” which the government set up early in the pandemic for PPE contract bids from companies recommended by Government ministers. The MPs said this unlawful channel “resulted in 115 contracts worth £3.8bn being awarded to 51 suppliers”. The Committee’s report twice raises the issue of PPE Medpro, a company at the centre of a fraud probe by the NCA.
Any modest contributions for my time and ongoing expenses are welcomed! At Buy me a Coffee one-off contributions start as low as $3, at