Now here's a marvellous example of Government wasting money on IT projects and for once, actually admitting to it. In 2004, the Department of Work and Pension embarked on a project called the Benefits Processing Replacement Programme and the contractor for the project was IBM.
In 2006-07 the project was abandoned having cost the taxpayer £143 million. Now here's the amusing thing, according to the DWP Minister, Jonathan Shaw,
Of the total investment in BPRP, £73 million of the £143 million has been of continuing value to the Department. This is detailed in the Jobcentre Plus 2006-07 annual accounts.In other words, £70 million of the money spent has not been of any continuing value, i.e. almost 50% of the amount spent was completely wasted.
Note also the way the whole sum is called "investment"? This is the classic New Labour redefinition of a word in practice. Investment actually means the use of money or capital in order to gain an appreciative value of some sort.
Here, the DWP is admitting that £70 million of the total spent did not provide any appreciative value, but they're still going to use the word investment to define it anyway.