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Letter: Government Rejected Our Test Offer For a Firm That Knew Nothing About It

Published on: 17 Sep, 2020
Updated on: 17 Sep, 2020

Photo: Natalie Kolb, Commonwealth Media Services

From: Name and address supplied

In response to: Can Our ‘Condescending’ MP Tell Us Exactly What This Government Has Got Right?

I know my employer, a major university (I write this in a personal capacity), in conjunction with a major NHS Trust, offered (back in April) to institute high-volume Covid-19 testing for a large fraction of London.

Because of the infrastructure associated with the NHS Trust, we would have been able to introduce testing capacity at scale, and quickly.

But instead, the government awarded the contract to an accounting firm that knew nothing about the topic and explicitly forbade us from offering the service. This shambles is, I am afraid, entirely the making of the government.

I wouldn’t explicitly blame our MP: her role, as far as I can see, is just to say “Yes” when required, and to retweet communications from Downing Street.

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Responses to Letter: Government Rejected Our Test Offer For a Firm That Knew Nothing About It

  1. Alan Morris Reply

    September 17, 2020 at 3:52 pm

    Governments more recently have exhibited a growing inclination to award contracts to bodies that have no appreciable background or knowledge in the task for which they are chosen and it is noteworthy that in recent times such practice has focused more and more on accounting firms.

    You have to wonder whether the government is now cost driven above all other considerations and as a consequence whether government, especially those that sit at the highest table, are competent.

  2. Ben Paton Reply

    September 17, 2020 at 9:36 pm

    All consistent with the themes in Richard Brooks’ book:
    Bean Counters. The Triumph of the Accountants and how they broke capitalism.

    Brooks now works for Private Eye but once worked for HMRC.

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