Official travel

17

Recently, it was reported in the American media that a certain government official was forced to resign due to public pressure because it was revealed that his official travels cost the taxpayers over a million dollars within a short time span. It was also reported that many others were being investigated.

 

This is interesting! If a rich country like the United States of America is so mindful about travel cost, to an extent of telling officials to be economical about their travels, where does that leave us?

 

We are a poor country whose budget is largely dependent on foreign aid. Added to that is the fact that we have just emerged from a regime blamed to have mismanaged our funds to the point of near bankruptcy. A few months ago, government had to downsize the budget for the year because it was not sustainable.

 

It would make sense; therefore, if we don’t waste the little resources we have left on expensive foreign travel. If every official wishes to travel first class, one wonders where that will leave the already broken economy.

 

Is it wise to call for austerity measures on the one hand and travelling first class – thus spending a lot of money unnecessarily – on the other? Certainly, some travel is unavoidable; but, does it have to be first class?

 

President Barrow banning high ranking officials from traveling first class would therefore be a step in the right direction. We must cut our coat according to our cloth. We have to economize the little we have.