Asked by Opposition Leader Marlon Penn about the total cost of travel incurred by the new government and a breakdown of those costs, Premier Andrew Fahie said he “really valued” the question and answered down to the cent.
“I must tell the public that for different parts of my travel to help save government money, I have removed myself from first class and business and gone coach,” he said, adding that the total cost of travel for all members of his Cabinet since they took office in late February has been $80,485.43.
This bill included trips to Guadeloupe, Nicaragua, Miami and Antigua thus far, he said, listing some examples of his trips and the purpose of each.
He also attended a United Nations Caribbean regional seminar on decolonisation in Grenada from May 2-4.
Mr. Fahie added that he “won’t apologise for travelling,” explaining that it benefits the territory. The premier also said he requires his government members to write a full report on their travels no more than a week after they return, including why they travelled and what was done, and present it to the Cabinet.
A breakdown for all members of government who have travelled for the territory was provided to HOA members in an appendix distributed during the meeting.
That document, which was provided to the Beacon yesterday, also shows trips to Wisconsin, Virginia, Colombia and Cuba ranging from around $2,000 to $5,000, and one $8,000 trip to Switzerland for the postmaster to attend Universal Postal Union conferences.