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Jan 19, 2015

House of Representative Passes Amendments to the Sugar Act

Gaspar Vega

The sugar crisis is a volatile one and has occupied the public conscious for months. On Sunday, the crisis came closer to resolution when the B.S.C.F.A. agreed to sign on with the millers, ASR/B.S.I. We’ll have that later in the newscast, but we go to this morning sitting of the House of Representatives in Belmopan.  While there were mundane house-cleaning matters on the agenda this morning, the purpose of the sitting was to pass amendments to the Sugar Industry Act. Government has received much criticism for its role in how matters played out. The Opposition has been one of its liveliest critics, and this is the first forum the P.U.P. has had to ventilate its condemnation directly to government. So things got heated very early on, as Deputy Prime Minister Gaspar Vega asked that the amendments to the sugar Industry Act be pushed through all its stages.


Gaspar Vega, Deputy Prime Minister

“Mister Speaker, in accordance with standing order number forty-nine-one, I move that the Bill be taken through all its stages forthwith.”


Francis Fonseca

Francis Fonseca, P.U.P. Leader

“Mister Speaker, we object to this in the strongest possible terms. How can we come here today, how can this government come here today to this Honourable House, place before us a Bill of such importance—affecting a vital national industry, the sugar industry—place that Bill on our table at ten a.m. when the meeting is scheduled to start and expect us to engage in a debate on this Bill?? Man this is absolutely outrageous, absolutely outrageous and disgraceful and I appeal to the honourable Prime Minister to withdraw the Bill so that we have an opportunity to proper review the Bill, consult with stakeholders so that we can have a proper debate and discussion on the Bill. Man that is the only way we can move forward on this Bill.”


Dean Barrow

Prime Minister Dean Barrow

“If you would allow me Mister Speaker, since he is appealing to me. And I usually try to accede to his appeal. When he said role the elections now, I acceded and that’s why Omar is here. But in this case, Mister Speaker, the Leader of the Opposition well knows that there was going to be this House Meeting this morning and he well knows that we have to pass this Bill today because we need to get the crop underway—a crop that has been delayed, Mister Speaker, in consequence of the machinations, bad-mind and sabotage of a number of people including the Leader of the Opposition. Get with the program man, you’ve done enough to try to sabotage the economy of the north, to try to hurt the national interest of this country, to try to drive away the investor; you were the one who said to nationalize, you were the one who said last week, let them go. Mister Speaker, how absolutely outrageous? I gather that your master from London had to call you and tell you to take it back. So Mister Speaker, exigencies of the situation absolutely require that we pass this Bill today.”

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Viewers please note: This Internet newscast is a verbatim transcript of our evening television newscast. Where speakers use Kriol, we attempt to faithfully reproduce the quotes using a standard spelling system.

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2 Responses for “House of Representative Passes Amendments to the Sugar Act”

  1. CEO says:

    Typical! Do nothing for as long as possible then Cram it through at the 11th hour!

    This is not solving a problem. This is creating other problems and this will come back to hurt you.

    The farmers are being screwed out of all future income and the fat rats are gloating.

    Peace will always only follow justice!

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