Wentworth and Dearne MP John Healey has revealed that The Ministry of Defence has blown billions of pounds at the same time as cutting Army numbers and freezing forces pay.
Labour’s “Dossier of Waste in the Ministry of Defence” found that the Government has wasted at least £13B of taxpayers’ money on 67 officially confirmed cases of MoD waste since 2010.
John, who is also Shadow Defence Secretary, says that Labour’s audit of waste shows that “the MoD is a uniquely failing department” and that “Ministers are failing British troops and British taxpayers”.
Labour’s audit examines the extent of waste within the MoD – the cost of which could have been avoided or reduced by better MoD judgement or management.
Labour’s analysis found that Ministers’ mismanagement at the Ministry of Defence has led to £4.8B of taxpayers’ money being handed out for cancelled contracts and £5.6B on overspent projects.
If this wasted public money had been reduced, funding could have been available to strengthen the UK’s Armed Forces and avoid cuts forced by budget pressures to troops, planes, ships and vital equipment.
The Government has no grip on spending at the Ministry of Defence. The National Audit Office (NAO) has declared the defence equipment plan “unaffordable” for the last four years in a row, while the Public Accounts Committee said that the Ministry of Defence’s procurement system is “broken and is repeatedly wasting taxpayers’ money”.
Labour’s audit is the first step in fixing the failing system. Labour would make the Ministry of Defence the first department subject to our new Office for Value for Money’s tough spending regime and commission the NAO to conduct an audit of Ministry of Defence waste to get to grips with these problems.
Commenting on Labour’s “Dossier of Waste in the Ministry of Defence”, Shadow Defence Secretary John Healey said: “The Ministry of Defence is a uniquely failing department. Labour’s audit confirms at least £13B in taxpayers’ money has been wasted since 2010, with £4B wasted while the present Defence Secretary has been in post.
Ministers are failing British troops and British taxpayers, and this audit is Labour’s first step in fixing the failing system. We would ensure the Ministry of Defence is the first department subject to our new Office for Value for Money’s new tough spending regime and commission to NAO to get to the bottom of these problems.”
Read the dossier in full here