A statement from The Rt Hon Margaret Hodge MP, Chair of the Committee of Public Accounts:
The Department for Work and Pensions has made such a mess of setting up Universal Credit that the Major Projects Authority had to step in to rescue the programme.
DWP seems to have embarked on this crucial project, expected to cost the taxpayer some £2.4 billion, with little idea as to how it was actually going to work. Confusion and poor management at the highest levels have already resulted in delays and at least £34 million wasted on developing IT. If the Department doesn’t get its act together, we could be on course for yet another catastrophic government IT failure.
This damning indictment from the NAO gives me no confidence that we will see the £38 billion of predicted benefits between 2010-11 and 2022-23. Vulnerable benefit claimants need a secure system they can rely on.