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Aug 7, 2014

BML Owner Lawrence Ellis Breaks Silence on Garbage Dispute

Darrell Bradley

For the most part, the BML – CitCo bomb has been defused by a timely intervention by, and a very large infusion of cash from the government of Belize. As we told you on Wednesday, BML workers will be rehired, littering tickets torn up, charges dropped and future employment secured. With central government cleaning up the mess, Mayor Darrell Bradley can now focus on his target of BML. That company, says Bradley, has provided terrible service and has gouged Belizeans with an exorbitant contract. He boasts that under his stellar watch, the Council can do it better for much less than the monies being paid – or in this case not paid – to BML. In the past few days everyone has weighed in on this issue…except the man who owns BML, Lawrence Ellis. He generally keeps away from the politicking, but today he told News Five that if the Mayor thinks he can clean the city for twenty-thousand dollars a week with one hundred workers, he’s talking trash…pun intended.


Darrell Bradley, Belize City Mayor

“If we were to pay an amount to BML…if we say we’re going to pay them five weeks, or three weeks…you challenge them and ask them how much of that money actually goes to the workers. So you look at that, and you reflect upon your question and I would respond to you respectfully by saying that the citizens are losing, and the workers are losing, and thankfully for the Prime Minister, we can ensure that at least the workers are protected.”


Lawrence Ellis

Lawrence Ellis, Owner, Belize Maintenance Limited

“That doesn’t even include Social Security for one hundred workers, so automatically it went up already. All these workers have to have tools, you have to have equipment, you have to have mechanics, you have to have supervisors, you have to have secretarial staff…electricity is going to go up wherever they house them. There’s a whole lot of stuff that goes along with running a company. So to say that salaries is all…that’s not a wise thing to say. Salaries is just a part of it, and sometimes a small part of it. Just the mechanical aspect of getting this job done is very costly. The fuel in getting this job done is very costly. I don’t think the Mayor will be paying business tax and other stuff like that but we have to pay that. So two hundred dollars of course cannot get the job done, by any means. And one hundred people in this city will not get the job done. The city is growing…the city needs more than that. The city needs more service than what we are providing right now. And just to make an important point. This contract that we have right now was renegotiated in 2006 by the then Ms. Moya’s Council. And it was Mr. Esquivel and Mr. Net Vasquez who negotiated this contract to the price that it is, and it was a take it or leave it deal, because this is what the Council can afford. You have to accept what the mayor said…he said that he does not believe that the Council’s money, or the government’s money, should be used for certain services. And he is moving in a different direction. He moved the Council in a different direction, and that is why this becomes a burden on the Council. He is moving the Council away from providing certain services and if that’s his focus then that is fine. But to say that we are gouging is a very irresponsible statement to make because that is not the truth. We must be honest when we make statements.”

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2 Responses for “BML Owner Lawrence Ellis Breaks Silence on Garbage Dispute”

  1. Simon says:


  2. Timber says:

    Well, all the “chicken will come to roost” as Malcom X said. Yes, it’s tough running a business, but as a businessman, you should have had residuals to pay your workers. You enjoyed sweets for years and never gave these people a raise. Imagine, $169 per week while you collected $78,000 every week. We are not in the business to lose but be humane. Touted how you’ll become a millionaire. Darryl had you in his sights from Day One and that’s why his father targeted you so much over the public forum. This contract is for him but they are now trying to cover it up since people have learnt it was to go to his Dad. We know how Darryl got kickbacks and who actually helped you acquire this contract; one former teacher where your mother taught. I know of the all expense paid vacation for her and some of Darryl’s trips; but he got to greedy and you got fed up. His hands aren’t as clean. Remember the guy who helped you formulate the business plan who was also doing the collection of garbage before you? He got out with his amount. As liard as Darryl is, because we know he avoided you and yet stated on the media that he always met with you, he has a point; the workers aren’t his responsibility.

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