The auditor general’s scathing report on the shambles that is the proposed $9-billion F-35 jet fighter program is just the latest and most pointed of DND’s troubles. It has forced the Conservative government back on its heels for its all-out support for an expensive project that the military brass seems ill-equipped to manage.
Finally awake to the problems with the F-35, the Harper government has put the Department of Public Works in charge and promises to do a better job reporting to Parliament.
But it’s not just jets. The shambolic submarine program, now in its 12th year of rust, repair and reconstruction and still incomplete, should have raised alarms long ago.
A department spending billions on equipment hasn’t shown a lot of accountability so far.
It’s a fair question: If the military can’t manage the F-35 contract and can’t keep subs in the water, how confident should we be that federal authorities will be able to manage $25-billion worth of ship contracts?