10 Aug 2017

Tonga told to front up over money collected for Pac Games

7:23 am on 10 August 2017

Tonga's government has been given until Monday to explain what is happening to money collected under legislation for the now-cancelled Pacific Games.

Parliament has been adjourned until then, after MPs questioned why over $US3.7 million was still being collected despite the government pulling out of hosting the 2019 event.

Noble MP, Lord Vaea, said the government was collecting revenue using three taxes introduced to fund the games.

Tongan opposition and Noble MP Lord Vaea

Tongan opposition and Noble PM Lord Vaea Photo: RNZI/Koro Vaka'uta

Vaea said he believed this was illegal.

He said parliament would reconvene on Monday and the government was expected to repeal the revenue gathering legislation.

But in the meantime Lord Vaea said questions remain.

"This is the question. What do you do with money that you promised people that it's going to be used for the sports. The Minister of Finance said it is going to be used diligently. How do you use money that has been collected illegally? So this is what they have to answer for."

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