Jim Murphy MP, Labour's Shadow Defence Secretary, responding to the Defence Committee report into the MoD's Annual Report and Accounts 2010-11, said:
"There is a thin line between callousness and carelessness and Ministers need to start taking responsibility for their decisions.
"Thousands of service personnel are being unceremoniously sacked. It is essential that the painful impact of David Cameron's decisions is minimised wherever possible. The Committee are right to suggest prioritising retraining for all those made compulsorily redundant. The transition between military and civilian life is always difficult and the Government should do more to provide opportunity and stability.
"It is vital in the face of deep cuts to defence that they account for every penny and wipe out waste. It is staggering that £5.2bn cannot be accounted for. Responsibility for financial management in one of the most important departments lies at the Prime Minister's door and he must deal with these worrying weaknesses.
"It is crucial that the Government is clearer on plans to lessen costs of withdrawal from Afghanistan, in particular whether we can retain and reintegrate equipment and hardware."