Labour First’s Abdi Duale is now a director of private health data company run by billionaire opposed to free healthcare
Labour National Executive Committee (NEC) member Abdi Duale – part of Labour First/’Labour to Win’, the hardest-right factional pressure group within the Labour party – is working for a giant private health data company, Private Eye has revealed.
In the same month he managed to get elected to the NEC, Duale was appointed as a director of FTI, a lobby company that advocates for US giant Palantir, known to want access to NHS patient data.
Palantir is owned by Peter Thiel, the Trump-supporting billionaire. The company uses FTI alongside the company owned by Tory election strategist Isaac Levido and Blairite Peter Mandelson’s Global Counsel. FTI also has deep Tory connections, both red and blue, according to Private Eye:
FTI has plenty of political connections: its London boss, Alex Deane, was David Cameron’s chief of staff, and Gemma Doyle, a director of key “moderate” Labour group Progressive Britain (formerly Progress), is a partner in the firm. FTI has increased its Labour links as the party gets closer to power… Critics worry that Palantir wants NHS IT contracts so it can get its hands on patient data which can be sold on to pharma firms…
Peter Thiel is not otherwise a health service fan: in January he claimed the NHS makes people Sick because free healthcare creates dependency.
The billionaire Thiel is deeply opposed to even the idea of universal free healthcare: earlier this year he claimed that the NHS makes people sick because free healthcare creates dependency.
Duale is close to, and a big fan of, Keir Starmer’s Shadow Health Secretary Wes Streeting who – like Starmer – has accepted large donations from donors with enormous investments in private health. Duale does not appear to have commented publicly on Private Eye‘s revelations.
In 2020, the UK government awarded a large contract to a subsidiary of United Health – the same company whose investor has donated to Starmer and Streeting – to use data to ‘divide NHS patients into high, medium and low risk groups and identifies “rising risk groups” such as those at risk of Type 2 diabetes’, raising concerns that NHS data will be used to discriminate against at-risk patients from treatment or to charge them. NHS campaigners believe that Palantir‘s interest in NHS patient data comes from similar aims.
Starmer and Streeting have repeatedly said that they want to use more private healthcare – and to ‘reform’ the NHS away from hospital treatment. The NHS, meanwhile, is collapsing after thirteen years of Tory spending and bed cuts and the closure of many hospitals – while ‘Labour’ figures accept cash from those who stand to profit even more.
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