The Scottish Government are ‘playing dumb’ over ongoing concerns with their botched CAP payments’ IT system, Mike Rumbles MSP has said.
In response to a written question tabled by the North East MSP, asking when the £178 million IT system would be fully functional again, the Rural Minister brushed the issue aside and refused to provide any constructive information whatsoever.
Mr Rumbles said: “This is exactly the kind of flippant response we’ve come to expect from the Minister. How smug can you get?
“The SNP’s bungled IT system has cost our rural communities millions of pounds in damages and created years of uncertainty for our rural economy. Not to mention the millions that have been spent by the Scottish Government trying to fix the problem.
“My question was quite simple, when will the system be fixed, and all the Minister had to say was ‘as with any large IT system, there will always be further development’. Not good enough.
“We know that many of our farm businesses and suppliers are desperate to see the payments scheme working properly again. It is perfectly reasonable for the government to put a timescale on that, but all they have done here is highlight their own ineptitude.”
Notes for editors:
- Written Question S5W-04724 - 24 November 2016 - Index Heading: Economy
Mike Rumbles (North East Scotland) (Scottish Liberal Democrats): To ask the Scottish Government by what date the IT system for common agricultural policy (CAP) payments will be fully operational.
Fergus Ewing: The Rural Payments & Services system is delivered in phases. The next major phase is early in the new year for enabling the processing of applications for the 2016 scheme year payments. As with any large IT system, there will always be further development and enhancements, in line with business and regulatory changes.