Saint Lucia’s Minister of Sustainable Development has been responding to reports that either she or her Permanent Secretary have been restricting overseas travel by ministry personnel, even when funded by an external agency.
Doctor Gale Rigobert also has responsibility for Education, Innovation and Gender Relations.
She told reporters Tuesday that there are times in the ministry, whether in relation to education or sustainable development when, because of the work load and the urgency of some matters that have to be dealt with ‘in land’, those matters have to be given priority.
“In fact, my own travel schedule is dependent on what is required of me in land as well,” Rigobert explained.
The minister also responded to a question of how the travel issue would affect Saint Lucia’s leadership as the lead negotiator on several climate change matters.
“You know that any time a country holds a particular seat on any given body or any negotiating space there is always someone who deputises,” Rigobert told reporters.
“Very importantly, the prime minister assumes the leadership of CARICOM in the first week of July and given his focus on climate change and his responsibility for sustainable development, it is important that we equip the prime minister with all the relevant information he needs for the heads of government,” the minister explained.
Saint Lucia will be hosting the CARICOM heads of government meeting next month.
“We also have some important legislative matters that we need to move through with urgency and I know I have a very talented team at the ministry and we will continue to devote our attention to these matters,” Rigobert asserted.