The Dundee Labour group has demanded full disclosure over a major corporate fraud investigation into the city council’s contract services.
The issue centres on an £8.3 million deal to supply heat, smoke and carbon monoxide detectors, with the lucrative contract subcontracted to Edmundson Electrical by the council’s construction services department without first going out to tender.
Head of construction Mark Ross quit as a probe continues, while electrical estimator Kenny Muir has been suspended after his name was passed to investigators by a whistleblower.
It is understood a number of other staff members are also the subject of ongoing inquiries.
The Labour group has now issued a statement demanding the SNP administration produce a timetable for revealing how taxpayers’ money has been used, amid fears the controversy will put off future contractors.
Speaking on behalf of Dundee Labour, Councillor Michael Marra said: “Councillors are being asked to expand the remit of construction services in Dundee so that the service can access new contracts. In order for this to be successful, clients will need to have confidence that the affairs of the council around contracts and capital works are being handled fairly and legally.
“The revelations and national headlines of recent weeks will make potential customers run a mile.
“The first step must be for all elected representatives of Dundee to be given a full briefing on this scandal and that must happen immediately.
“There is a growing concern among councillors that we do not have sufficient information to give any confidence to our constituents.”
Mr Marra added: “The Labour group will now demand that the leader of the SNP administration produces a timetable for public disclosure.
“When can the people of Dundee expect to know what has gone on with their money and what is being done to sort it? The Labour group leader first brought these issues to the attention of officers in early July.
“There has been scant information coming out of the council since, and the leader of the SNP must move now to restore public confidence.”
Dundee City Council leader and SNP councillor John Alexander responded, saying: “We all need to allow for the thorough investigation to move forward at pace. Important questions have been raised by many, including me, and they must be thoroughly interrogated and answers provided.
“The leader of the Labour Party, Councillor Kevin Keenan, is the convener of the scrutiny committee also.
“I would caution Labour politicians in casting a shadow over the confidence in construction services. I have confidence in the service and the hundreds of staff providing it now.
“There are literally hundreds of dedicated workers within construction services who do a great job and there should never be a situation where a politician calls into question the ability of all of those workers, based upon allegations against three individuals.
“Investigations are progressing and no one should be under any illusions of how seriously such matters are taken by all, irrespective of political party.
“Representatives of all political parties have already been invited to a briefing later this month.”