Sudden postponement of JMC meeting a ‘considerable inconvenience’
Britain’s decision to cancel a meeting with the leaders of overseas territories at very short notice has been strongly criticised by the Government.
The move to postpone the Joint Ministerial Council gathering with UK officials in London caused “considerable inconvenience”, according to officials.
The last-minute action meant David Burt had to change plans to meet Bermudians studying in the UK next week as part of his scheduled trip to Britain.
A Cabinet Office spokeswoman said: “As shared by other overseas territories leaders in recent days, the abrupt cancellation without consultation of the JMC was a considerable inconvenience to those who had already planned their travel.
“In fact, some OT leaders were already in London for the meeting.
“Premier David Burt, however, will attend the meeting once it has been rescheduled, and in particular looks forward to meeting with Bermudians studying, working and residing in the UK.”
The Premier had been due to host two “dinner and dialogue” events with students in London and Nottingham on November 10 and 11.
Zac Goldsmith, who was appointed Minister of State for the Overseas Territories this week, suddenly postponed the annual meeting.
Mr Goldsmith, whose official title is The Lord Goldsmith of Richmond Park, has had a high-profile career in British politics.
The son of a billionaire businessman, Mr Goldsmith was expelled from top private school Eton College when cannabis was discovered in his room.
He became a conservative MP in 2010, serving under the premiership of David Cameron.
However, he resigned in 2016 on the grounds he opposed a third runway at Heathrow Airport.
He lost the resulting by-election to the Liberal Democrats, but was returned to the House of Commons in 2017, only to lose his seat at the 2019 General Election, which led to him being made a peer.