The Eastern Cape government owes businesses R2.3bn for work done, with the health department being the biggest culprit as it ran out of money before it could pay 17,470 suppliers a combined R2.1bn by the end of February.
This was revealed by finance MEC Mlungisi Mvoko in a written parliamentary reply to DA MPL Bobby Stevenson, recently.
The R2.3bn that Bhisho owes comes as the provincial government has vowed to process and pay all valid invoices submitted by suppliers within 30 days.
In a statement on Thursday, Stevenson said: “This uncaring approach of paying timeously is crippling and destroying jobs. We need to get the money owed flowing into the economy as fast as possible.”
However, Mvoko said the provincial government was not always to pay for the late payments, saying some had submitted inactive bank details or submitted late.