Following the recent debacle over renewal of driving licences that I have written about extensively on this blog, Britain now faces a new ‘delay scandal’.
Tens of thousands of people are unable to travel abroad, and have had to forfeit holidays they had booked. This is because the Passport Office has ‘untold delays’ in issuing new and renewed passports.
The reasons given are the same as with the Driving Licences.
They ‘didn’t expect’ so many people to want to go on holiday once all the restrictions were lifted.
They ‘didn’t expect’ so many people to want to renew expired passports in 2022.
So many staff were working from home because of Covid-19, and they didn’t have ‘full access’ to the systems required.
Postal applications mounted up after Post Office delays saw them being delivered in bulk.
Strange how two huge government organisations like the DVLA and The Passport Office had all these issues during the pandemic, don’t you think?
Or maybe it is not so strange.
Yesterday, government ministers announced that the Passport Office is going to be privatised, to make it ‘more efficient’. Something similar is also being mentioned regarding the DVLA, to make the issuing of driving licences run more smoothly.
Let’s see how that works.
*Create a bureaucratic nightmare. Send home staff during the pandemic, making sure they have no access to the system that allows them to do their jobs.
*Once the scandal erupts, and public outrage is reported in the media, you can ‘justify’ selling off the organistations concerned.
Who would buy them? Well existing ‘logistics’ companies, owned by friends or relatives of government ministers of course. The contracts will be huge, lucrative, and long-lasting. That will insure the move is not overturned if a different government comes to power in 2024.
Will the passports and driving licences arrive faster when that happens? Probably not. There will of course be a ‘transition’ to the new owners, one that will likely see tens of thousands of applications get lost in the system forever. Existing staff will be disposed of, and new staff on lower salaries and insecure contracts will be employed, using the ‘call-centre model’.
You can be sure of something else too. Passports and Driving Licences will cost a great deal more than they do now.
If you ever want to know the answer to anything going on in this country, follow the money.