Resource accounting put the armed forces in Iraq at risk
A just-in-time supply philosophy fostered by government resource accounting 'has put service people in peril and cost lives', writes our parliamentary correspondent.
The warning from Tory shadow defence minister Gerald Howarth followed the row over the shortage of vital kit during the Iraq war, which erupted when it emerged that a sergeant was shot after being ordered to give up his body armour to soldiers said to be facing more risk.
‘We have been saying for a long time that applying commercial practices suitable for Tesco or B&Q have limited value to our armed forces,’ said Howarth. P> The row reignited last week during a meeting of the House of Commons public accounts committee, where MPs considered an NAO report on major MOD projects. A Ministry of Defense spokesman insisted: ‘We never had a just-in-time policy, but we are looking at the levels of stock holding that we have.’ He said the department acknowledged there were problems with tracking supplies during the war.