Jersey civil servants splash £400,000 on 120 flights

Beijing, Cape Town and Hong Kong Image copyright Thinkstock
Image caption Civil Servants visited a number of countries around the world including China and South Africa

Civil servants splashed out nearly £400,000 on 120 flights over the past five years.

The figures have been released by the States after a question from Reform Jersey chairman, Deputy Sam Mezec.

It came after it was revealed two civil servants spent £13,000 on flights to a mining conference in South Africa.

The latest figures show Mike King and Wayne Gallichan have been to the conference every year since 2013, spending about £40,000 on flights.

A spokesman for the Chief Minister's Department said: "States-wide reviews of travel policy and expenditure are underway.

"The scope of these reviews encompass the travel spend of the whole of the public sector, including all government departments and the individuals within those departments."

Image caption Civil Servants spent the most flying to China, spending about £90,000. Source: States of Jersey

Chairman of the Public Accounts Committee, Deputy Andrew Lewis, said the procurement system did not seem to be working properly.

"It is designed to save money, time and give a good audit trail. We've looked into it and it seems it does not do any of those three things," he said.

"We need to find out how it is supposed to work and if it is not working how they are going to fix it."

Both men have apologised and are facing an internal investigation.

Other flights booked through the States procurement system have cost more than the £6,442 Mr Gallichan and Mr King spent travelling to South Africa.

Colin Powell, the States Advisor on International Affairs flew to Hong Kong for a ministerial visit in 2011 for £6,852.

The figures show the Chief Minister's Department spent £177,000 on flights costing more than a thousand pounds, with Economic Development spending £141,000 over five years.

Among the pages of flight costs, one was for the Principle Legal Advisor to an anti-corruption conference in 2013 to Panama City. It cost £3,682.

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