Poor planning leads to delays at taxpayers' expense

April 28, 2016 2:14 PM

The remote island of St Helena was due to open its much needed new airport next month, but the project - which has come at a £250m cost to British taxpayers - has now been delayed indefinitely.

While tests were carried out before the construction of the airport there are now concerns about the level of wind shear – a problem which has been responsible for a significant amount of plane crashes.

This is especially problematic as the nearest diversion airport is 1,300 miles away in Angola, making use of an alternate landing strip very impractical.

So while it obviously makes sense for the airport to remain closed while this problem is investigated we find yet another case of poor preparation and planning. And in this case it has been with £250 million of taxpayers’ money at stake.

When taxpayers are on the hook for a project it is vital that all considerations are undertaken so that delays are avoided. There are undoubtedly good reasons to provide an airport in St Helena, but like too many other government projects, the project doesn’t seem to have been entirely thought through.



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