Comparison: Caymanian Premier Alden McLaughlin and Bermuda Premier Craig Cannonier. *Creative Commons photo/File photo
Comparison: Caymanian Premier Alden McLaughlin and Bermuda Premier Craig Cannonier. *Creative Commons photo/File photo

Details of the costs surrounding ministerial travel will be made easily accessible to the public, Government has vowed.

Cabinet Secretary Derrick Binns told the Bermuda Sun that the Government was ‘finalizing’ a new policy to allow the ‘timely release’ of ministerial travel and expenses information.

His response came after the Bermuda Sun asked for a detailed breakdown of ministerial travel expenses during last month’s Islamic Finance and Investment Group Conference in London.

And it came more than three weeks after the Cayman Government released its own detailed breakdown of the cost of the trip.

The Sun initially contacted Government on April 14 requesting details of the London trip between March 23 to 28 that was attended by Premier Craig Cannonier, Finance Minister Bob Richards and Mr Binns.

We asked for a breakdown of airfare costs, accommodation costs and other expenses.

But no details have been forthcoming.

A statement from the Office of the Cayman Premier on April 3 — just a few days after the Islamic meetings ended — said: “Premier Alden McLaughlin travelled to London last month (March) with Home Affairs Chief Officer Eric Bush and Financial Services Councillor Roy McTaggart.

“The total cost of the trip, which was from 23 to 28 March, 2014, was $19,056.02.

“Premium economy airfare for the three was $11,913.88; Holiday Inn Mayfair hotel was $4,442.14; and per diem allowances totalled $2,700.

“While in London, Mr McLaughlin had separate meetings with FCO Minister Mark Simmonds and the UK Treasury regarding the budget and
various Cayman Islands Government projects.”

The Bermuda Sun waited for nearly two weeks to be provided with a breakdown of the expenses for the London trip. 

But we have received no information.

Mr Binns told the Bermuda Sun: “The Bermuda Government is finalizing a policy that will enable the timely release of, and ease of, access to details regarding Ministerial travel.

“Those details will include the purpose and location of the trip, the participants, and the costs.

“It is our intent to enable the data to be easily accessible by the public.”

Referring to the Bermuda Sun request for information about the Islamic Finance trip to London Mr Binns added: “Unfortunately we are not able to provide you with the requested data in time for your publication deadline.”