THE Government flew a plane load of ministers and politicians to Australia last week in a trip the Opposition described as a junket and waste of taxpayer money.
The Government chartered an Air Niugini F100 and flew the group of 40 politicians and their advisers to Western Australian to look at an LNG operation there.
A Government spokesman said the ministers visited the Northwest Shelf Facilities in Western Australia, which is the biggest LNG supplier for both domestic and export, to learn about the operations of an LNG facility.
“It was a highly educational trip,” the spokesman said.
“People need to see the project to understand how an LNG operation works,” he added.
He said most people appreciated the trip.
But an Opposition spokesman said the trip was a waste of money, and was a joyride to appease politicians who were not happy with the Government and were asking questions about a few issues.
“The Northwest Self Venture is a highly technical and advanced project, about 20 to 25 years old, and I do not know what a group of politicians can learn from seeing the facility.
“Maybe they saw it from the air and liked it,” the spokesman said.
“It is a waste of taxpayers’ money,” the spokesman said.
“How much did IPBC or Treasury spend on this junket, when this money could easily be used to address issues at the Port Moresby General Hospital? “They got their priorities wrong.”