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Good Law Project has been threatened with defamation proceedings by P14 Medical Limited, a company which secured £276 million worth of PPE contracts without competition.
P14 is run by former Conservative councillor, and party donor, Steve Dechan. The company secured PPE contracts after being funnelled through the ‘VIP lane’. Good Law Project has never claimed P14 asked to be in the VIP lane. Our issue is, and always has been, with how and why the Government handed out huge contracts without competition.
In our blog, we referred to analysis by The Sunday Times as to the quality of facemasks provided by P14. And we hold correspondence from the Health and Safety Executive and the Department of Health about those issues. We said in that blog, and we repeat, that there were doubts over the quality which led to delays in the use of those facemasks. The delays meant that only 1 in 400 had been used as at June 2021.
This is very far from the first threatening letter Good Law Project has received in response to our work on PPE contracts. It is unlikely to be the last. You would not expect us to withdraw statements we believe to be true under threat of defamation proceedings. And we won’t.
With thousands of people’s support, we have exposed the existence of the ‘VIP lane’, revealed huge amounts of PPE that could not be used in the NHS, proved in the High Court that the Government acted unlawfully by failing to publish details of Covid contracts, and established that there was apparent bias in the way in which Government contracted to favour its friends.
We plan to continue. We plan to continue to push for transparency about how your money was spent. We plan to explore why companies wound up in the VIP lane. We will continue to shine light into dark corners.
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