Michael Gove has ordered his civil servants at DEFRA to spend millions of taxpayers’ money on preparing for Brexit despite Parliament not yet having authorised any spending.
Using his prerogative powers, Mr Gove has directed civil servants to spend £7 million on starting to prepare an import control system for animals, £5.8 million on preparing a computer system to handle the regulation of chemical substances sold in the UK, and £3.2 million on various other systems.
All these services are currently provided in or through the EU and so all of this money represents double spending by the government.
Francis Grove-White, deputy director of the Open Britain campaign, said:
"The Brexiters promised us £350million a week for the NHS if we left the EU. What we've actually got is an NHS in crisis and more and more money being spent on paying for Brexit.
“Michael Gove has no problem ordering his civil servants to spend more on preparing for Brexit and has clearly no intention of fulfilling any of the promises he made in the referendum campaign.
“Brexit increasingly looks like a damage limitation exercise and, as the costs rack up, the public are right to keep an open mind.”
Notes to editors
The details of the ministerial direction can be read at: https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/eu-exit-preparations-ministerial-direction