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Michael Gove backer won £164m in PPE contracts

David Meller, a Conservative party donor who supported Michael Gove’s Tory leadership bid, won £164m in Covid contracts after the minister referred his firm to a “VIP lane” that awarded almost £5bn to companies with political connections.

Meller Designs, based in Bedford, was awarded six personal protective equipment (PPE) supply contracts worth £164m from the Department of Health and Social Care (DHSC) during the coronavirus pandemic.

At the time the company was co-owned by David Meller, who has donated nearly £60,000 to the Tory party since 2009. This included £3,250 to support Gove’s party leadership bid in 2016, a campaign on which Meller worked as chair of finance. When the contracts were awarded, Gove was a minister at the Cabinet Office, which is responsible for government procurement, and in charge of the office of the chancellor of the duchy of Lancaster, which referred Meller Designs for PPE supply.

Full story in The Guardian, 17 November 2021

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