Richard Boyd Barrett TD: PWC should be removed as body investigating cost overruns at National Children’s Hospital because of conflict of interest
People Before Profit TD Richard Boyd Barrett has said that PWC should be removed as the team investigating the cost overruns at the National Children’s Hospital as they have a conflict of interest and cannot conduct an objective investigation given their long-standing relationship with BAM- the major contractor for the construction of the hospital. They are also regularly paid as consultants for the HSE.
Richard Boyd Barrett TD, a member of the Oireachtas Committee on Budgetary Oversight, said: “It is totally unacceptable for PWC to be appointed as the body to investigate the cost overruns at the National Children’s’ Hospital. The government is paying out nearly half a million euro to PWC to find out why there was a cost overrun at the National Children’s Hospital. PWC has been the recipient of major contracts from both the HSE and the construction company involved, BAM.
“Health Minister Simon Harris recently awarded PWC a €1.8 million contract to examine the restructuring of the HSE.
“This is despite the fact that a previous PWC report on medical cards was criticised by the Comptroller and Auditor General as faulty. That particular report had claimed that by culling ‘ineligible beneficiaries’ from the medical card system, savings of between €65 million and €210 million euros could be made.
“PWC has been picking up easy money from BAM, the main construction company involved in building the National Children’s’ Hospital. For the past nine years, it has earned €4 million a year as its auditors.
“By pure co-incidence, PWC was also the firm that recommended that water charges be introduced. While proposing new taxes on the wider population, PWC was simultaneously the main ‘tax planner’ to global companies who were using Ireland as a tax dodging haven.
“PWC should be removed as investigators into cost overruns at the National Children’s Hospital.”