No apology from civil servants over South Africa flights

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Economic Development chief executive Mike King (right) and Locate Jersey's director of inward investment Wayne Gallichan have been criticised for flying business class while on States business

TWO civil servants who spent almost £13,000 of taxpayers’ money on business-class flights to South Africa last month have said they will not comment on calls for them to publicly apologise.

Their responses come as the Island’s chief civil servant, John Richardson, said that the case needed to be properly investigated on top of the immediate review of the States-wide travel policy announced by ministers.

Last week the JEP revealed that Economic Development chief executive Mike King and Locate Jersey director of inward investment Wayne Gallichan spent £6,442 each on fully flexible business-class flights to the Investing in African Mining Indaba conference.

Following the revelation, Nick Corbel of Unite the union, which represents manual workers, and Treasury Minister Alan Maclean called for a public apology from the two men, particularly given that the States was currently trying to make savings and cut jobs, however, when asked by this newspaper if they would apologise to the public both Mr King and Mr Gallichan said they were not prepared to comment, with both saying that the bookings had been made within States policy and that it was necessary to travel business class because they would be working straight away when they arrived.

 

 

 

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Comments for: "No apology from civil servants over South Africa flights"

Oldwoman

Why am I not surprised at their arrogance, typical these people seem to think they can spend OUR money as they please.

Mr Sensible

The public of jersey should be shown the full account of this trip including senator ozoufs bills, which should include taxi fares to and from all airports, overnight stays in London plus meals for all 3 I bet the full account for this trip comes to around 30,000 pounds when you take into account the civil servants wages for the time they were away. This is absolutely disgraceful no doubt it's the tip of the iceberg, let's hope the whistle blower who revealed this lets the press know about other trips.

good evans

This is a blatant abuse of public trust and waste of public money. These people should be sacked to show that no-one can get away with this sort of elitist behaviour. In every organization expenses are reviewed, approved and accounting entries are logged - if this was not the case, why not? Heads should roll!

brendan renehan

They must have been laughing their heads off on the flight! No chance of an apology, they know full well that it will blow over in no time and be forgotten about.

Who gets to sign off these expenses? Do they do it themselves without scrutiny of any kind?

The public of Jersey will put up with anything!

Topliplufc

Didn't really expect anything else , goes to show their arrogance and contempt for ordinary tax payers money that pays their probably £100,000 plus salaries

BHB

The paying out of just under £13K could be regarded as an investment by the States. Perhaps instead of having to apologise, the two gentlemen concerned should explain the ROI that they have actually achieved. After all, they claim to have been working straight away on their arrival. OK, let them dump their cases first, but let someone ask them what they actually did for Jersey in the hours following and how soon the cost of that trip was covered? Should Scrutiny not pick up on this?

Squawkie L Pelican

I agree. A thorough statement needs to be made. At the moment, the public consensus is that the silence belies a guilty conscience for taking a taxpayer funded jolly.

Another fine example of our government handing control of the narrative to the press while glumly watching from the cheap seats. After constant badgering from the press and the responsible minister, expect a half baked offering aka statement condemning avarice and exonerating the travelling tweedle dee and tweedle dum.

Dave C

If there was any ROI it could have been achieved with less of an investment.

We shouldn't be focused on an apology anyway, it's just a diversion. If they were within guidelines, then the guidelines need to be changed. Then there needs to be a disciplinary process in place, to sanction those breeching the guidelines. Should be rules really, rather than guidelines.

Also, we need to identify, if there was any real need to travel in the first place and what the process is for sanctioning the travel. Who authorised this trip in the first place?

Realist

At least a couple of expensive airfares takes the heat off millions wasted by TTS on parish improvement schemes, that St Mary's roundabout, St Peters Valley cycle track, car parks on green fields next to ancient parish churches and the rest.

Tickle

Poor guys, they should not be made to apologise.

They should be sacked as part of thr States cost cutting measures.

Oh I forgot senior states members and civil servants dont get sacked only the people at the bottom of the pile.

In fact why not give them a well deserved raise and a break they must be stressed from all that travelling.

poor guys

Mr B

Arrogance beyond belief. You only have to look at the smug look on these 2 guys faces says it all really. Never mind I'll keep working and paying my taxes to keep them looking so smug.

Poochperfect

OT. I wonder if that 200k for one film company, which was highly speculative as an investment, would have been better used to set up an environment to encourage the film industry in general to consider Jersey.

Also if that money had been used to set up a local film company for our students studying media, would this have been a more Jersey centred investment.

Is it in the remit of this department to make this kind of speculative investment with taxpayers money? If so, I don't think it should be.

Poochperfect

Sorry I posted that comment on the wrong thread, lost the scent there for a moment!

Tickle

Sack em, sack em, sack em and wipe the smiles of their faces!!!

Public officials should serve the public not business interests in another country

stanback

Come on chief minister show us what your made of and sack the two of them.

and get rid of John Richardson at the same time.

Poochperfect

If they are 'sacked', the states will be embroiled in an unfair dissmissal legal battle that will cost much more. I wonder what the mechanism is in the civil service for dismissal on the grounds of misconduct, poor judgement and misuse of public funds?

Are there any benchmarking criteria for performance in place, which actually give the public confidence that the high salaries of senior civil servants are justified?

good evans

I would be very interested to see the hotel expenses too - I don't imagine this was a camping trip!!

JonnieH

It is time that all public expenditure was published annually without the need for foi requests. That should include all salaries (and expenses claimed) and those paid out of the public purse should not be protected by feeling that this is "too sensitive" to be revealed. If they feel embarrassed by it being public knowledge then they should not be in the job to start with.

Sycamore

Normally more than a 3 1/2 hour international flight would put an employee into business.

Budd.

The look on these two's faces, are they really trying to look stupid?

If they are they are doing a good job at it.

But then again they must think we are all stupid.

We must be, we vote in people that allows a civil servant to give away over 200 grand for nothing and yet keeps his job.

Not only that but King still has 'conversations with the crooked film non-maker'!

These two should be looking for jobs elswhere if they are lucky enough to find anyone outside of the public sector to employ them.

Ah! may be Senator Green will give a job 'globe trotting' the world looking for a suitable hospital.