Fujitsu handed £3.4billion in Treasury-linked offers regardless of Post Office scandal

Fujitsu has been handed £3.4billion price of contracts by way of Treasury-linked organisations since 2019, MPs have revealed.

Despite the agency’s function within the Post Office scandal, it has been handed £1.4billion price of offers because the High Court dominated there had been bugs and errors in its Horizon software program. Just one of many our bodies even thought-about winding down their contracts with the tech big – however had determined to not.

The Commons Treasury Committee final month wrote to organisations together with HM Revenue and Customs (HMRC), the Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) and the Bank of England (BoE) to demand particulars of their agreements with Fujitsu. All three have spent appreciable sums with Fujitsu Services Ltd or Fujitsu Global-owned entities.

HMRC has awarded the corporate eight contracts price £1.39 billion because the ruling in 2019, whereas an extra six contracts pre-dating the ruling remained energetic after 2019 however have since ceased. The FCA agreed offers price round £630 million relationship again to 2007 which continued to run after the High Court judgment, and nonetheless maintains six contracts price a mixed whole of round £9 million.

The Bank of England confirmed it had one contract price £417,000 from 2019 which expired on August 9 2020. The committee had requested all organisations whether or not Fujitsu’s function within the Horizon scandal was thought-about through the tendering course of and whether or not they considered ending the offers in mild of the scandal.

But it stated the one response it had obtained about attainable termination had come from the FCA, which confirmed it thought-about winding down a contract with the agency resulting from poor efficiency however determined to retain its companies. The FCA is an unbiased non-governmental physique however stories to the Treasury.

Harriett Baldwin, the Tory chair of the committee stated: “We have unearthed some information which, I believe, goes beyond what is known by the Cabinet Office. I hope this will aid transparency and scrutiny around the role of Fujitsu as a public sector supplier.”

Hundreds of subpostmasters across the UK were wrongly prosecuted between 1999 and 2015 after Fujitsu’s faulty accounting system made it seem as though money was missing from their branches. In 2019, the High Court ruled that the software had contained “bugs, errors and defects”, leading the scandal to become known as the most widespread miscarriage of justice in British history.<

Scrutiny of Fujitsu, Government and the Post Office has intensified in recent weeks after the saga was dramatised in ITV’s Mr Bates Vs The Post Office. A statutory inquiry seeking to establish the full facts, including the roles played by different organisations, is ongoing.

Fujitsu has offered its “deepest apologies” to victims of the scandal and said it would contribute towards compensation payments for those wrongly convicted.

A Government spokesperson said: “The impression the Horizon scandal has had on postmasters and their households is totally horrendous, and it’s essential that one thing like this could by no means occur once more. That is why we now have launched a statutory inquiry into the scandal to resolve what went unsuitable, in addition to offering compensation for these affected. We welcome Fujitsu’s choice to pause bidding for work with new Government clients till such time because the inquiry concludes. Ahead of that, and as with all contracts, we proceed to maintain Fujitsu’s conduct and business efficiency underneath evaluation.”

A HMRC spokesperson said: “HMRC works with tons of of IT companions – huge and small – and all of our contracts are publicly out there by way of Contracts Finder. The measurement and complexity of our IT property implies that a number of companions are concerned in constructing and sustaining nearly all of our methods and companies.”