70 Thousand Dollar New Ride for Elvia Vega in Hard Times

Elvia Vega

At the crack of dawn, at 5:36 a.m. on Tuesday, June 15, Financial Secretary, Joseph Waight sent off a letter informing his colleagues that Hon. E Vega would be applying for a motor vehicle advance in the sum of $70,000. The money which is to come from the Government’s coffers is to purchase a brand new ride for the newly appointed Minister of State in the Ministry of Human Development. The letter says that it is “to purchase a personal vehicle to be used in the execution of her official duties.” The letter goes on to state “she will also be applying for duty exemption.”
Under ordinary circumstances there would really be nothing wrong with this request; what makes it unusual however is that the Government is saying that it is broke. It is so broke that it has proceeded to reduce the salary of most public officers by at least 10 percent. What’s more outrageous is that Vega, on her elevation to the position of Minister of State, is also now enjoying an additional $40,000 more to her salary. This is in addition to a vehicle allowance that she receives.
Now, this is almost like spitting in the face of ordinary public officers. They would never even be entertained at this moment to get a salary advance and much less to even be considered for a duty exemption, yet here comes Vega and the financial red carpet is being rolled out.
The Government seems to be applying the campaign slogan “Everybody fi Win” but in this instance, it is “the privileged PUP’s fi Win”.