RPA chief ousted because SFP payment target will not be met

UK - Johnston McNeill has been ousted from his post as chief executive of the Rural Payments Agency because of the problems surrounding the delivery of the Single Payment Scheme.

DEFRA secretary Margaret Beckett announced the move in a ministerial statement released on Thursday morning (16 Mar).

The statement read:

“The Minister for Sustainable Farming and Food, Lord Bach, told the other House on 31st January that the RPA would establish entitlements in mid February and that all farmers would then receive an entitlement statement.

“This has now happened in all but around 1% of cases and payments did indeed start to be made before the end of February.

“Ministers have throughout been advised that, following the validation of claims, the RPA expected to make the bulk of payments by the end of the month.

“Late on Tuesday afternoon the Chief Executive informed me that their latest reassessment of the position was that this would no longer be possible. This is an unacceptable situation.

“With my approval, the Permanent Secretary of my Department, Helen Ghosh, has today appointed Mark Addison as Acting Chief Executive in place of Johnston McNeill.

Source: FWi
calendar icon 16 March 2006
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