Motability chief exec resigns as bonus criticised
A COMPANY chief executive has resigned after it emerged he is in line for a £2.2m bonus, whilst working for a taxpayer-supported business supplying cars to people with disabilities.
The annual pay package of Motability Operations’ Mike Betts, at £1.7m, was recently described as “totally unacceptable” by the Work and Pensions and Treasury Committees. Now, following a watchdog inquiry by the National Audit Office (NAO), he has confirmed he will step down no later than May 2020, once actions for the company are agreed.
The NAO found he is in line for a bonus which is likely to reach about £2.2m by 2022, accusing the Motability scheme of charging customers £390m “more than was required” since 2008.
The Work and Pensions Committee’s chairman, Frank Field, said: “It is beyond appalling to learn that money that could have been used to improve the lives of disabled people will be lining his pockets instead.”
As only the initial allocations of £258,000 have previously been disclosed, Mr Field claimed Motability Operations has “serious questions to answer” about the evidence it provided to a joint select committee inquiry earlier this year. The Work and Pensions and Treasury Committees said rival firms cannot compete as Motability receives tax breaks from the Government and does not face any competitive pressure when tendering for contracts.
Responding to the report, the Motability charity said it will “seek improved mechanisms to better influence Motability Operations’ executive remuneration”’. Lord Sterling, who co-founded the scheme, said he accepts the watchdog’s recommendations but insisted there are “areas still open to further debate”, while the finding that customers are being overcharged “runs quite contrary” to prices which are lower than the market rate.