EXCLUSIVE: Authorities palms £1MILLION payout to Vodafone and Fujitsu ‘for nothing’ in bungled gentle process for communications project
- Authorities awarded ‘world connectivity’ contract to Vodafone last November
- Fujitsu protested and the International Space of enterprise admitted to errors in assessing bids
- The department paid out around 1,000,000 pounds to the corporations fervent
- MPs accused authorities of ‘nice break’ and said lessons ought to be learned
Printed: 13:50 BST, 19 July 2019 | Updated: 13:54 BST, 19 July 2019
Taxpayers have handed around 1,000,000 pounds to Vodafone and Fujitsu for ‘nothing’ after the authorities bungled a delicate process.
Senior MPs voiced fury at the extensive bill, which change into incurred after corporations protested about errors in awarding a £90million contract to present ‘world connectivity’ to the International Space of enterprise, Global Constructing department and British Council.
They told MailOnline the difficulty change into ‘nice’ and pointed out the money can have paid for dozens of nurses.
Vodafone change into awarded the seven-three hundred and sixty five days deal in November last three hundred and sixty five days. It then began working on providing the service.
On the other hand, Fujitsu threatened to maintain the International Space of enterprise – which ran the process – to court docket for getting its sums sinful.
Vodafone change into awarded the seven-three hundred and sixty five days deal in November last three hundred and sixty five days, however the project change into scrapped amid appropriate threats from Fujitsu
In step with the International Space of enterprise accounts, extra money change into paid to Fujitsu to quilt its appropriate bill
In step with the most new accounts for the department – headed by Tory leadership hopeful Jeremy Hunt – after the say change into lodged officers stumbled on ‘there were flaws in the normalisation of two of the bids all over the monetary evaluate’.
As a result, the International Space of enterprise agreed to pay out £740,000 to Vodafone for its prices.
Every other sum change into paid to Fujitsu to quilt its appropriate bill. The department declined to verbalize how considerable – however the varieties counsel it change into hundreds of hundreds of pounds.
The accounts said: ‘The FCO regarded as that the technical requirements were clear and that the evaluate change into appropriate.
‘On the other hand, it authorized that a Court can have made up our minds in every other case after a lengthy and dear trial.
‘The FCO regarded as that there change into succor (to the procurement and the last contract with the winning bidder) in making sure that its requirements were totally clear.
‘To boot to, given the time since graduation of the procurement, the Authority regarded as that it could perhaps perhaps per chance now be sparkling to maintain finest thing about technological developments which weren’t previously incorporated.
‘The FCO subsequently made up our minds no longer to award a contract and regarded as that the fairest and most proportionate choice change into to provoke a brand contemporary process.
‘The FCO regarded as that any various choice would were extremely in all probability to halt in protracted and dear litigation, which change into regarded as undesirable given the urgency to space this contract.
‘This action led to Fujitsu withdrawing their say towards the FCO.’
The doc said the authorities change into paying the proper prices of Fujitsu.
‘The FCO also agreed to compensate Vodafone for the costs linked with the detailed work on contract engrossment following them being urged they were the most widespread bidder,’ it added.
‘These funds relief a long way from the costs to the taxpayer of a lengthy appropriate case, and permits FCO to proceed with a brand contemporary procurement exercise and appoint a seller for this contract.’
The International Space of enterprise refused to verbalize how considerable the proper prices for Fujitsu were. On the other hand, in the accounts ‘particular funds’ rose from £31,000 in 2017-18 to £395,000 last three hundred and sixty five days. There were handiest five funds.
The International Space of enterprise – headed by Tory leadership hopeful Jeremy Hunt (pictured in Downing Avenue this week) stumbled on there were ‘flaws in the normalisation of two of the bids all over the monetary evaluate’
An FCO spokesman said:’We are re-running the procurement which is able to present the handiest label-for-money for taxpayers and over the scale of the contemporary contract we stop no longer demand to ogle a label amplify.’
Meg Hillier, Labour chair of the considerable Commons Public Accounts Committee, said: ‘Here is but any other example of unhappy contracting by the authorities. To have made an error so important that they’ve to scrap the contract and originate but again is sweet.
‘This underlines why we need better talents to make certain these errors create no longer occur.
‘But here is in direction of 1,000,000 pounds of taxpayers’ money that has long past on completely nothing. Utterly wasted.
‘Civil servants need to take into account when they’re doing this work that they’re spending taxpayers’ money.’
Labour MP Margaret Hodge, a extinct chair of the Commons watchdog, said: ‘Here is an unpleasant break of public money. Think what number of nurses and clinical doctors that may perhaps have sold.
‘What is substandard is nobody is held to myth for their mistake.
‘It’s accurate buried as a line in an uneventful doc, and it the truth is is a quantity of cash.
‘It’s miles a pair of of my constituents in Barking will accept in a lifetime.’
Every Vodafone and Fujitsu declined to comment.