Temotu Provincial Government has reported incurred a debt that has now risen to $1 million.
Sacked provincial minister for Natural Resources, Fr. Brown Beu, made the claim.
Beu was sacked last week over what Premier Nelson Menale claimed was “working against him”.
Beu, a former premier himself, claimed the $1 million debt will stand in the way of the province to develop unless it is cleared.
“The debt was a result of accumulated unpaid bills the province owes to businesses in the province,” he claimed.
The Sunday Star was unable to confirm this with Premier Menale.
Comments will be sought from the premier in coming days.
Beu urged the provincial executive to address the debt.
He said last October, the province was unable to pay its workers due to lack of funds in its basket.
“As a result, the provincial executive resorted to borrowing funds from businesses within the province to meet the salaries of its direct employees,” Be said.
He said it is ridiculous for the executive to borrow money because the province does not have an economic base to generate income from.
“Businesses in Lata have been demanding the payment of their bills but to no avail.
“While they are meeting their obligations to the province in terms of business licences and other tax, the province had failed them,” Beu said.
By ELLIOT DAWEA