The Swindon Labour Group’s Shadow Lead for Leisure, Councillor Jim Robbins, has demanded answers from Moirai and Swindon Borough Council over the identity of the mysterious owner of the company that took over from Moirai in running the Oasis Leisure Centre.
Mr Miroslaw Wojciechowski was sold Oasis Operation Ltd (who ran the Oasis Leisure Centre until its liquidation) for £1 on April 2013 and became the sole director and 100% shareholder from this date. According to the report in to Oasis Operations Ltd’s liquidation, Mr Wojciechowski bought the company to take advantage of the approval the company had from Swindon Council.
Neither Swindon Borough Council nor Moirai have so far said that they have met with Mr Wojciechowski.
Oasis Operations Ltd (which was subsequently renamed MW Contract Services) went in to liquidation in January 2014 and owed £850,000 to creditors at the time of its liquidation, including HMRC and local small businesses like Storm Recruitment, based in Commercial Road, which is owed £4,721, and Carlton Services in Old Town, which is owed more than £2,000.
Last month the Leader of Swindon Council gave Moirai more time to meet its development targets agreed with the Council, after they failed to meet initial targets which could have allowed the Council to break its ties with Moirai.
The Labour Group’s Shadow Lead for Leisure, Councillor Jim Robbins, said:
“The news that nobody from Swindon Council or Moirai had met with Mr Wojciechowski either before or during the time he took over the running of the Oasis, is deeply concerning and raises serious questions about whether any checks were made on this person who wanted to run what are still assets owned by Swindon Borough Council. And there’s the fact the contractors of the Oasis provided services to the Oasis in good faith that they would be paid, and now it looks like they’ve will be left pocketless. Moirai should take responsibility for this and rectify their actions, but Swindon Council also needs answer why it is working together with a company that is acting in this way.
The deep suspicion among many people I have spoken to about this is that Mr Wojciechowski is nothing more than somebody put up by Moirai to hold the liability of the £850,000 arrears that Moirai were in with the Oasis. And the sale of Oasis Operations Ltd for only £1 only further heightens this suspicion. However at the moment nobody is even sure that Mr Wojciechowski exists.
Until we get proper answers as to how this whole affair has happened and how somebody that nobody has spoken to or checked has got his hands on the Oasis, we can only conclude that now is the time for Swindon Council to break away from the agreement it had come to with Moirai and that the Council should review its due diligence procedures with private companies.”
Councillor Jim Robbins
Labour Group Shadow Lead for Leisure