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Stop the sell-off of 49 GP practices
We Own It: Centene Corporation, an American health insurance giant, has just taken over 49 NHS GP surgeries and practices.

NHS facing legal challenge over data deal with controversial Silicon Valley firm Palantir
Sky News:The NHS is facing a legal challenge over its data deal with controversial Silicon Valley firm Palantir, which has become notorious for its close ties to security services and immigration agencies in the United States, secured its first ever deal to handle NHS data in March last year for the nominal sum of £1.

Lies, damned lies and Matt Hancock
Is it a prerequisite to be a government minister to insult the public’s intelligence? Matt Hancock’s assertion yesterday that the government was never short of PPE is an insult to 850 healthcare workers who lost their lives fighting Covid. And an insult to the doctors and nurses who, on occasions, were forced to go onto the frontline wearing nothing other than bin bags.

MPs call on Hancock to apologise after denying Covid PPE shortage
MPs have called on Matt Hancock to apologise after he denied there was ever a national shortage of personal protective equipment (PPE) during the coronavirus pandemic.

But Conservative Aaron Bell was having none of it. He accused some MPs of “trying to extend politics through court cases”. Bell said: “….this recent practice of trying to extend politics through court cases is actually becoming quite damaging to our democracy as a whole – particularly when technical judgments are then deliberately misrepresented as seems to have happened in this case?” Black kettleism at its best?

NHS facing legal challenge over data deal with controversial Silicon Valley firm Palantir
Sky News: The NHS is facing a legal challenge over its data deal with controversial Silicon Valley firm Palantir, which has become notorious for its close ties to security services and immigration agencies in the United States, secured its first ever deal to handle NHS data in March last year for the nominal sum of £1.

Inside the UK’s Pandemic Spending: Waste, Negligence and Cronyism
New York Times: When the pandemic exploded in March, British officials embarked on a desperate scramble to procure the personal protective equipment, ventilators, coronavirus tests and other supplies critical to containing the surge. In the months following those fevered days, the government handed out thousands of contracts to fight the virus, some of them in a secretive “V.I.P. lane” to a select few companies with connections to the governing Conservative Party, which reaped billions.

SWEENEY INVESTIGATES: From Russia With Leave – The Curious Case of John Whittingdale
Byline Times: with the Labour Opposition calling for Russian propaganda to be regulated, John Sweeney investigates whether the Media Minister responsible has a conflict of interest.

Matt Hancock acted unlawfully over Covid contracts, judge rules
The Government unlawfully failed to publish details of billions of pounds’ worth of coronavirus-related contracts, the High Court has ruled. The Good Law Project took legal action against the Department of Health and Social Care (DHSC) for its ‘wholesale failure’ to disclose details of contracts agreed during the pandemic.

Calls for inquiry into Boris Johnson’s fiancée’s influence over Government
A group of Conservative party supporters have called for an ‘independent inquiry’ into the role of Boris Johnson’s fiancée Carrie Symonds in the ‘governing’ of the UK. Think tank the Bow Group want officials to probe into Ms Symonds’ ‘position and authority’ within the current administration amid accusations she is helping to control key Government appointments.

Tory donors net £1.8m from ports scheme that gave Dover £33,000
Two Tory donors who also funded Vote Leave are to get almost £1.8m of public money as part of a scheme to cope with Brexit disruption. Terence Mordaunt and Sir David Ord have run the city’s docks for nearly 30 years and are long-term supporters of the Conservative Party. They donated £25,000 to Boris Johnson’s leadership campaign through one of their companies in 2019.

No competition for 99% of Covid contracts
Only one in 100 contracts handed out to companies to support the government’s Covid-19 response was awarded by competitive tender, according to a leading think tank. Despite the public debate over whether the taxpayer has received good value for the billions spent on tackling the virus, the Institute for Government (IfG) said it had seen little evidence of Whitehall re-establishing traditional competitive procurement rules.

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