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Saturday, July 18, 2020

Tory donor company runs into problems on Covid tests

Having blogged yesterday about the awarding of government contracts to companies with strong links to the Tory party without a competitive tender, it was interesting to find this article in the Mirror from a few days ago.

The paper says that Coronavirus tests given to thousands of Brits and supplied by a firm which has donated £160,000 to the Conservative Party were pulled last night over safety fears. Care homes in England were ordered by the DHSC to halt using the testing kit produced by Randox Laboratories, on the grounds that they “may not meet our required safety standards for coronavirus testing”:

Randox Laboratories was awarded the £133 million contract by the Department for Health and Social Care (DHSC) in May after a non-competitive bidding process.

The firm has donated a total of £160,800 to the party since April 2010, according to the Electoral Commission.

The most recent donation, of £10,000 was made to the party in September 2018.

The firm has also employed Owen Paterson, a Tory MP and former minister, as an advisor since 2015, and is paid £100,000 a year.

The Mirror understands red flags were raised about the 'CE' safety stamps on the Chinese-made tests supplied by Randox.

Physical inspection of the tests led to questions about the sterility of the swabs.

You reap what you sew, I suppose, but that does not help all those who have been compromised by this test. The tendering processes are in place for a reason and should not be short-circuited.
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