$95K -cost of sending Niue’s delegation to the Pacific Leaders meeting in the Cook Islands

Premier Tagelagis delegation of 15 welcomed on the tarmac upon arrival to Rarotonga for the 52nd PIFS Leaders meeting. Photo credit: Lydia Lewis RNZ Pacific

The People’s Republic of China funded eighty thousand dollars of the total cost of $95,000 to send Niue’s delegation of 15 to the Pacific Forum Leaders meeting in the Cook Islands, revealed by Premier Dalton Tagelagi at today’s sitting of the Fono Ekepule.

One of Common Roll MP O’love Jacobsen’s questions asked Premier Tagelagi how much it cost to send Niue’s largest ever delegation to the PIF Leaders meeting.

In response, Premier Tagelagi informed the Fono Ekepule that the cost of Niues delegation to the Cook Islands earlier this month totaled $95,000 but when he itemized the cost, the total is $96,000

Chartered (discounted) Air Rarotonga flight – $50,000

Accommodation – $13,000

Transport – $3,000

Allowances (per diems) – $27,000

Taxes – $3,000

Premier Dalton Tagelagi explained that this is the largest ever Niue government delegation to a Pacific Island Forum Leaders meeting because of the number of bi-lateral meetings with donor partners they attended to.

The Premier’s delegation to the Cook Islands raised questions as to why there were so many. The names of the delegation were not made public before they departed Niue, however pictures taken of the group leaving showed the the high level delegation led by Premier Tagelagi included Mrs Tanya Tagealgi and their sixteen year old son TK, Minister Esa Mona Ainuu, Member assisting Minister Mr. Ricky Makani and Assemblyman from Avatele Pita Poimamao Vakanofiti, Secretary of Government Peleni Talagi, Deputy Secretary Gaylene Tasmania, President of the Niue Chamber of Commerce Sefeti Fatiaki Adriana, Sergeant Juliana Togahai, several officials and security detail.

In previous years, Niue would normally send a three or four member delegation to the PIF Leaders meetings.

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