Shadow Treasurer Rob Lucas said today that FOI documents revealed that Jay Weatherill had paid more than $285k to a full production film company-57 FILMS-to film a number of events including his overseas trips.
“I believe this is simply a massive waste of taxpayers’ money designed to stroke the ego of a vain politician,” said Mr Lucas.
Mr.Weatherill has even admitted that he has been using the expensive vision for posting on his Facebook site to help boost his own profile.
Even ‘Media Mike’ Rann would not have been brazen enough to have taxpayers pay for a full production film company to fly around the world with him to film a travelogue of his overseas trips.
The FOI documents show that 57 FILMS were paid more than $87k to film the Premier’s trip late last year to Europe and more than $98k to film his trip to China. The government has confirmed that taxpayers paid about $34k for travel and accommodation costs for the film crew’s European trip. About $100k was spent on filming other events including Mr.Weatherill and others meeting Chinese officials on their return visit to South Australia.
When Mr.Weatherill was originally criticised about this waste in December his media advisers led media to believe a SA based crew had not been flown to Europe to film the trip. When that claim was debunked Mr. Weatherill then claimed that flying a film crew from SA overseas would be cheaper than hiring a local crew.
That claim is clearly nonsense as industry sources have confirmed that hiring a local crew would cost much less than the $185k cost of flying out a SA based film company.
This waste of more than $285k is yet another example of the warped priorities of the Weatherill Government.
Mr.Weatherill needs to explain to taxpayers why his vanity is more important than saving critical health and school services which are currently being cut by the government.