Do you remember the early days of the Covid crisis? The Tory government managed to make the scandalous shortage of PPE into a virtue by acclaiming the heroism of the different companies that were ‘converting’ so that they could produce much-needed PPE.
But who decides which companies will get the thumbs-up for providing the NHS with protective equipment? Since it’s public money, you’d think the public would be allowed to know about it.
I ask because recently there were reports of a Co Antrim firm which had been given a £108 million government contract to supply the NHS with PPE. One catch: the firm, Clandeboye Agencies Ltd, is in the sweets business. They produce snack nuts and coffee-related products. So what quality did this Co Antrim firm have, that the Tory government sought them out or were alerted to their existence? Have they shown that they can operate a business with a bag of sweets in one hand and a fistful of PPE in the other? Or will it involve tinkering with the machinery so that what hitherto produced snacks is suddenly sending PPE equipment down the assembly line?
I’ve heard of making a purse out of a pig’s lug, but this sounds nutty.