Foreign Affairs Minister Kamina Johnson Smith’s failed bid for the Commonwealth Secretary General post cost a total 43 million dollars.

A media release from the Office of the Prime Minister (OPM) said 18.2 million dollars was spent for lobbying expenses related to air and ground transportation, COVID-19 tests, meals and accommodation and communications support activities for staging of events, such as the launch and engagements with delegations. It also included IT support, printing of documents, photography, food and beverages.

An additional sum of over $25 million was spent for the Jamaican delegation to attend the Commonwealth Heads of Government Meeting (CHOGM) in Rwanda in June, where the vote took place.

The OPM says the cost to attend the conference was split among three ministries, with the Office of the Prime Minister shouldering $12.8 million; the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Trade paying $7.7 million; and Ministry of Tourism contributing the remaining $5.1 million.

Johnson Smith was defeated by the incumbent Baroness Patricia Scotland at the Commonwealth Heads of Government Meeting.

Scotland received 27 votes to Johnson Smith’s 24.


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