The prime contractor to build the Obamacare exchange, which has been riddled with glitches and became the laughing stock of many, appears to have had a poor track record for other projects in recent years, according to reports.
A screenshot of CGI website. (Image source: CGI.com)
CGI Federal in the U.S., which is a subsidiary of the Canadian-based CGI Group, was contracted to build most of healthcare.gov, the federal healthcare exchange that launched on October 1.
According to Sun News anchor Brian Lilley, if the U.S. government awarding the group the contract in 2011 had looked "north of the border," to the parent company that is, they "would likely have set off some alarm bells."
"CGI, which has been providing government work since the 1970s has been involved with some high profile failures," Lilley said.
Of the other contracts cited by the Canadian news site was an eHealth system. CGI's $46.2-million contract to create a diabetes registry for eHealth was terminated last year by the Canadian government, according to the Canadian Press.
CGI apparently missed several deadlines and the registry was ultimately left unfinished.
Sun News also pointed to an auditor general report that found conflicts of interest for IT procurement in general within the eHealth program.
"...we believe the use of consultants was significantly more costly to the province than had this work been completed by departmental staff," CBC noted from the AG report.
"Then there was the gun registry," Lilley said in his Sun News report. "CGI was hired to make sure that the then Liberal government’s gun control program was efficient and high tech."
"It never worked the way it should have – was it bad programming or bad government decisions? The truth is we don’t know, we just got stuck with the bill," he continued.
Watch Lilly's full report for Sun News about the history of other contracts CGI has held:
Obama said Monday in a Rose Garden press conference, "nobody is madder than me about the fact that the website isn’t working as well as it should, which means it’s going to get fixed."
CGI Federal also issued a statement Monday that said it was working with the government and other contractors “around the clock” to fix the system.