Attend a meeting today with Constructing Excellence which I think we all find a bit embarrassing, although we make the most of it and agree to put out some best practice material. Sorry for being so cryptic but I need to watch what I am saying.
The story starts a couple of weeks ago when we issued a briefing about the OFT investigation into cartelling and price fixing, I checked this over before issue and was confident that we were well within the legal boundaries on the issue. However after a week or so I get a letter from the Construction Confederation accusing APSE of all sorts and threatening to sue us. On reading the letter my immediate reaction was laughter, it was the usual sort of bullying stuff, distorting what we had said to try and move the spotlight from what the real issue is - a number of the contractors who have admitted to being investigated by the OFT also working on Billions of pounds worth of public sector projects. Maybe I am just old fashioned about these things but surely there is a public interest in communicating information already in the public domain to those in public authority in order to ensure that any possibility of the public purse being ripped off is mitigated against.
That is when I started to get angry and basically told the bullies that if they wanted to take action against APSE then to bring it on - this is one argument I am perfectly happy to have in public to spread the news as far and wide as possible. Needless to say you all know what happens when you stand up to bullies, no matter there size they back down and explain that you have misunderstood their intentions and they really want to be your friend.
This is when I was pointed in the direction of Constructing Excellence who promote on behalf of the Government best practice in the construction procurement sector. We will issue something jointly in the next month or two as I believe this is really an organisation who have the public interest at heart.