The way tourism scholarships had been awarded came under the spotlight after a question was raised in the Legislative Assembly.
Tourism Minister Charles Clifford said that of six candidates interviewed late in May 2005, the panel selected and recommended scholarships for four people.
‘However, in June 2005 a series of scholarship award letters were discovered in the Ministry of Tourism offices indicating that the former Minister of Tourism had independently awarded 13 full scholarships and two partial scholarships during the period of November 2004 through May 2005,’ he told the House on Thursday.
Mr. Clifford said that, in that month, neither the Ministry nor the Department had on file any application documents relating to those people.
The scholarships co-ordinator was ‘not aware of these letters being issued by the former Minister and consequently these persons were not part of the formal application, interview and selection process,’ he told the House.
Notwithstanding the circumstances, and in the interests of the students involved, the Ministry included the students in the scholarship programme, he said.