25 Jun 2012

Vanuatu PM Kilman embroiled in rent claim

3:55 pm on 25 June 2012

There are reports from Vanuatu that the Prime Minister Sato Kilman owes the state millions of vatu in rent for the government house he has occupied for nearly 20 years.

But Mr Kilman's family says it is owed much more for family land that is occupied by the Malampa Provincial Government.

Documents from the Department of Lands show Mr Kilman has accumulated a debt of 120,000 US dollars since 1993.

He is expected to pay rent of about 500 dollars a month but has not been billed in the past year.

The secretary general of the Vanuatu National Workers Union, Ephraim Kalsakau, is querying how the Electoral Commission could permit the Prime Minister to stand in elections while the debt remains outstanding.

Meanwhile, the Prime Minister's younger brother, Walter Kilman, says the government has a debt with the Kilman family of over one million US dollars.

He says since 1980 government hasn't paid for the rent of their land in Malakula which is used for the headquarters of the Malampa Provincial Government.