No evidence of fraud between One Housing and Morrisons
Published by Max Salsbury for 24dash.com in Housing
Standard housing picture 4Image: Housing via Shutterstock
An independent investigation into claims of corruption between social landlord One Housing Group and maintenance contractor Morrisons has failed to find any evidence of fraud, misconduct or overcharging.
The claims came to light in January during a tribunal hearing by a former employee of Morrisons. Alan Strong alleged that the company had fraudulent arrangements with many of its clients, of which One Housing Group was singled out for mention.
Mr Strong also claimed that the company routinely overcharged its clients.
The 15,000-home provider immediately instructed its lawyers and auditors to carry out an independent investigation, and one staff member was also temporarily suspended to ensure integrity.
The investigation included a thorough review of contracts and invoices for the period concerned and interviews with key figures including Mears (which acquired Morrisons in 2012), One Housing staff and Mr Strong and his legal representative.
Neither the legal team nor auditors found any evidence to support the allegations and the suspended staff member has now returned to work.
“We’re pleased to be able to say that Mr Strong’s claims of corruption at One Housing Group are totally without substance,” said John Gregory, group director of housing services. “However it’s deeply regrettable that Mr Strong has sought to damage our reputation and particularly that of our employees as part of his dispute with his former employer.”