Parliament’s Administration Council propose $1 million budget for proposed international travel

Parliament’s Administration Council propose $1 million budget for proposed international travel

Parliament National (Image Tatoli/Egas Cristovao)

DILI, 23 september 2020 (TATOLI) – This year, Timor’s parliament council of administration has proposed a budget of $1.403.568 for international travel.

The request for an international travel fee, the President of Commission D (Economy and Development), Antoninho Bianco, has disagreed  with the proposal, noting that the world is facing the COVID-19 pandemic.

“We are supposed to cut all funding for international travel,” he said.

He also added that the United Nation Organization has been able to organise virtual meetings, to ensure that people do not need to travel to participate directly, even the President delivered his speech online.

“Therefore, we do not want COVID19 to be brought back or contracted by Timorese, it is better to cut off all the budgets relating to this for parliament, UN has also implemented this form of activities, what are we going to do again,” he stressed.

Mr Bianco added the total amount for domestic travel is $680.008, and this  can be continued despite the decision made for international travel.

CNRT’s member Carmelita Caetano Monis, also has mutual agreement with FRETELIN’s Antoninho Bianco, to cut all the international travel fees.

“I asked for an explanation of the travel budget to the total amount of $1.403.568, I don’t know, where we will travel as COVID-19 still exists in the world, and currently there is no end in sight. Thus, in this situation, $1.403.568 is for what?” she said.

Foreign Affairs Minister, Adaljiza Magno (Image Tatoli/Antonio Gonçalves)

Early in the month on the 23 of september, Timor’s Ministry of Foreign Affairs (Ministériu Negosiu Estrajeiru no Kooperasaun – MNEK) reduced the item for the international travel introduced in a bid to trim 6 million dollars from the proposed 2020 budget.

Foreign Affairs Minister, Adaljiza Magno said after the plenary audience from the previous Wednesday that the ministry revised their earlier 26 million dollar budget down to 20 million.

She said the $20,787,774 budget would be split into four categories which are $ 12,732,444 MNEC spending for Salary, a $ 7,883,020 for good and services, $ 143,535 located for the capital minor, public transference is $28,775 there is no budget for Development capital.

“Today, we have an audience with the parliament commission B to introduce our Ministry budget. Our budget is $20 million, normally our budget is greater than this which was $26 million, however with the reality of COVID-19 we are rarely travelling abroad, and it is a bid to trim the 2020 budget,” she said.


Journalist: Evaristo Soares Martins

Editor: Cancio Ximenes/Nick Kettle


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