The London 2012 Olympics were a successful event, no thanks to G4S security. They were awarded the contract to provide security for the Games but at the eleventh hour it was revealed they would not be able to fulfil the contract. The Firm however insisted it would not pay back the money it had received as this had been sunk into the cost of trying to provide the security personnel necessary.
In the end volunteers and a huge amount of military personnel were drafted in to plug the gaps. G4S still insisted they would not pay anything back but made a large token payment to the military. Whilst you can argue that the military would have to be paid whether they worked at the Olympics or were at base, that is not the point. It means that the British Taxpayer paid dearly for Olympic Security.
Perhaps one positive with the fiasco was that Defence Secretary Philip Hammond began to question the Tory Parties long standing belief that the private sector has to be better than public services. Most UK Conservatives seem to think that public sector workers are overpaid and more. As these workers have now endured job cuts and pay freezes time and time again that will not be the case. In truth it never was except for a few high fliers.
Before we all let forth a sigh of relief though Hammond was only talking about the military. The government has plans to privatise part of the military and the police service. G4S was the group expected to take over selected roles. Hammond should bear in mind that it is not only G4S who will offer a second class service should they be offered government contracts. The public sector fulfills its obligations as best as it is allowed. The Private Sector will be full of company bosses with dual roles wanting to feather their own nests.
Perhaps surprisingly G4S will also be responsible for security at the paralympics which are due to start soon. They may have got their act in order by now, but do not hold your breath. The level of military cover is being reduced and G4S are picking up the slack.
Today G4S announced that the Olympic contract has so far cost it £50mil. Well the taxpayer has already stumped up more cash that it should have. What do G4S want a sympathy card?
They may claim to have lost £50mil, through their own incompetence might we add, but they still could recoup on the paralympics.Only in the UK could such a company, having shown a frightening level of incompetence still have a contract to run.