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Apr 28, 2015

Will Petrocaribe Loans Act be Repealed Within 21 Days?

Dean Barrow

Will the controversial Petrocaribe Loans Act be repealed by May nineteenth?  That’s what Leader of the Opposition Francis Fonseca and P.U.P. Deputy Party Leader Julius Espat are anticipating, following an ongoing effort to stimulate social partners into petitioning an abrogation.  The Barrow administration, through Financial Secretary Joseph Waight and legal advisor Michael Young, has undertaken a public relations campaign in an effort to sell the rationale behind the contentious piece of legislation.  The People’s United Party has countered with its own offensive seeking the support of the unions, the business community and the churches to attempt to strike out the retrospective measure.  Well, according to PM Barrow, there is absolutely no way that the Petrocaribe Loans Act will be repealed.

 

Prime Minister Dean Barrow

“I can say from now that there is not a chance in hell that there will be any repeal of the Petrocaribe Loans Act.”

 

Reporter

“Even if the social partners and the Opposition galvanized?”

 

Prime Minister Dean Barrow

“In my view, the bye-election in January and the municipal elections in March constituted a kind of referendum on Petrocaribe and, as far as I recollect, we won those referendums resoundingly.  We not only have now a fairly decisive majority in the House but we are buoyed, some people would day powered by the verdict of the people in relation to Petrocaribe and our governance generally.  In no circumstances there can and will be no turning back.”

 

Reporter

“That is before all these issues surfaced though.”

 

Prime Minister Dean Barrow

“No, the issues were always there.  From the time we went to the House the first time around to get the resolutions past with retrospective validating effect there was opposition, that’s when we put ten thousand persons at the foot of the National Assembly.  True, there’s been a ramping up occasioned by the Petrocaribe Loans Act.  I believe that, from the point of view of the opposition since the question devolved from what the Opposition Leader had to say this morning, they see their chances fast slipping away in terms of the upcoming general elections.  They feel that Petrocaribe is a part of, for us, the winning equation, for them the losing equation.  And so they’ve jumped on what we’ve done to put the Petrocaribe arrangements beyond doubt, beyond legal challenge.  We did that deliberately because we are absolutely certain that the people of this country are benefiting greatly from Petrocaribe.”

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