The consultancy gravy train shows no sign of stopping. The Department of Health awarded the multi-national professional services firm, Deloitte, a COVID-19 contract that could be worth almost £1 million a day without the contract ever going to tender.
The deal, worth up to £145 million, was handed to Deloitte to ‘support testing for Covid 19’ for just five months. Deloitte has been given at least 25 public sector Covid-contracts since the outbreak of the pandemic, of which contracts totalling £170 million were awarded without any competition.
Not only did Government fail to advertise or put this huge contract out to tender, they didn’t come clean about the enormous sum of public money handed to Deloitte until around the time the contract had ended. We believe this particular contract in question is unlawful and have initiated legal proceedings.
Deloitte is not the only firm to land large numbers of public sector contracts during the pandemic. An investigation by the Good Law Project using information collated on the Tussell database has revealed that the largest six global consultancy firms have been given a staggering £1.3 billion of public sector contracts since the start of February 2020 of which at least 125 contracts worth up to £298 million are associated with the public sector’s COVID-19 response.
Government’s approach to procurement throughout this pandemic has been characterized by a repeated failure to follow its own rules. For the sake of the public purse, we will continue to push for proper governance.
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