Peter Collins drummer boy for Metrix military academy PFI!
Let me raise just a few of the points Peter Collins didn’t make.
Peter Collins just forgot to mention that new labour Ministers have used a sneaky and secretive parliamentary device to quadruple to £40 million the level of taxpayers money to underwrite the privatising of military training in the biggest PFI ever instead of making a ministerial statement. I expect they hoped no one would notice!
So why are we privatising profits and nationalising risk to help huge multination companies like Raytheon arms dealers and Qinetiq who has already been condemned for fiddling the taxpayer? Is he accusing the financial times of being anti
Pater Collins didn’t report either the risks to the quality of training for our troops which the MoD top brass themselves are worried about! And that was before the French catering firm Sodexo took a 50% stake in the project.
Do the people of
Peter Collins didn’t mention the fact that the noise levels will be unacceptable to local residents? Nor did he mention the track vehicles ...tanks and such.
Peter Collins omitted to report that that MoD added to the planning permission for a golf course and a field exercise area!
If the people of
THIS week, your Man On The Street has come in for severe criticism for his positive reporting of the multi-billion pound plan for the Defence Technical Academy at St Athan.
The attacks have come from the No To The Military Academy campaign whose members accuse me of, among other things, being dishonest and “chasing fool’s gold” by reporting the economic benefits the scheme could bring, not just to South Wales but to other parts of the Principality.
The campaign often quotes London-based newspapers which question the economic viability of the scheme. Everyone agrees it has had its problems. It would be surprising if it had not been affected by the economic downturn.
Most worryingly, the Financial Times has flagged up concerns about the project.
These doubts have been reflected in the pages of this newspaper, albeit not in the stark terms employed by some other newspapers across the border. The decision to bring the academy to Wales was never that popular in England and so it is not surprising that some there would like to see it fail.
Constant attacks on the project by people in Wales serve to give succour to those in England who lost out and still oppose it coming to Wales.
The other arm to the No To The Military Academy campaign is that it will be run by “arms dealers and war profiteers” and attract “all those trainees from the not-so-democratic Saudi Arabia”.
That is one way of looking at it. But not, I think, a view shared by the majority. The Echo, and thousands of its readers, supported the bid to bring the academy to South Wales.