The government in court

At the end of April 2021 the UK High Court ordered the UK government to disclose documents and correspondence relating to ministers’ knowledge of a scheme that allowed suppliers with political links to access multimillion pound contracts for personal protective equipment (PPE) at the start of the pandemic.

Campaign group the Good Law Project has taken a series of court actions over decisions to award contracts.

Previously the court ruled the UK government acted unlawfully over public contracts in the coronavirus crisis, saying on February 19 that the government failed to publish timely information about billions of pounds worth of public contracts.

The Good Law Project and three opposition MPs brought the legal challenges over the government’s own strict time limits, which specify that any state contract award notices must be published within a 30 day period of the deals being finalised. During the court hearing, the government accepted that there had been technical breaches of its obligations.

The Opposition Labour party called on former Health Secretary Matt Hancock to “commit to cleaning up cronyism”. Matt Hancock has since been forced to resign.

Court orders disclosure
Court judgment
The Good Law Project
Money for mates
Government acted unlawfully
Government failed to publish
Cronyism and corruption