THE Olympic security firm which failed to provide enough staff to keep the Games safe must not be allowed to take over policing in the West Midlands, an MP has warned.
Khalid Mahmood (Lab Perry Barr) condemned G4S, the company being paid £535 million to protect the Olympic Games, after it emerged 3,500 soldiers had been drafted in to provide a last-minute substitute for security guards.
But G4S is also one of six bidders for a controversial contract to provide services for West Midlands Police, which critics have attacked as “privatisation”.
Mr Mahmood said: “The disgraceful failure to fulfil their promises at the Olympics is putting the nation’s security at risk and shows why G4S must not be allowed to take over police services in the West Midlands.”
G4S had promised to supply 10,000 guards for the Games, but it has not been able to guarantee it can deliver that number.
Instead, army personnel, including some who have just returned from Afghanistan and were on leave, have been bought in to provide security instead.
The extra 3,500 troops are on top of 13,500 who had already been agreed.
The Home Office has warned that G4S will not receive the full payment agreed, but has not said how much will be held back.
Mr Mahmood said: “Soldiers bought in to protect athletes and spectators aren’t going to be paid overtime as things stand, but I believe they should be paid for their extra work from the money that would have gone to G4S.
“We are going to look like a Third World country with soldiers guarding sports stadiums.”