Following on from the enormous success of the SAF processing system for effecting EU subsidy payments to the Scottish farmers, the Scottish Government recently announced that it has agreed to pay the same supplier £6.5million to count to 1200.
In a recent interview a Scottish Government official explained, “It’s a lot more than just counting. This is the electronic vote counting system. It has to remember a name and a ward as well. You see, this system [which is costing £5,500 for every person that is counted], has to put these people in numeric order and choose who has been elected in each ward.”
A local Aberdeenshire IT graduate who has been unable to find work in Scotland offered to knock the system up in an afternoon for £3,000.00 but the Scottish Government turned his offer down.
“We cannot afford to take unnecessary risks,” the same Scottish Government official told us. “If this graduate fails then we will have lost £3,000.00 and half a man day in effort. We need to go with a large organisation in order to guarantee success and what better organisation than the one that created the CAP system. They already have hundreds of non-Scottish workers who can develop this system on a time and materials contract basis and for such a complicated system we will need all the people we can get.”
Another large organisation recently licensed the Scottish Government to use it’s own version of the electronic vote counting system which is called Excel.
This software already enables the Government to enter names, wards and vote numbers, it can also be distributed throughout the whole of Scotland using a system called the the Internet.
Our Scottish Government official told us, “You must appreciate, there is a major skills shortage here in the UK. Where do you propose we find the staff who can use this complicated Excel system? We need to spend £6.5million to get this system developed properly and if it over runs because it is so complicated we will find the extra money by reducing public services and closing a hospital or a few fire stations. Like the CAP system, it is very complicated. I cannot stress enough – it is very complicated.”
Previous electronic vote counting systems could only be used once: