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Aug 30, 2016

Michael Finnegan Surprised that P.U.P. Did Not Speak on B.T.L. Settlement

Litigation in respect of the compensation award, following government’s acquisition of B.T.L. in 2009 is ongoing.  The latest round of legal battle is presently before the Caribbean Court of Justice; despite a recent decision by an arbitration tribunal regarding the amount government owes B.T.L.’s previous owners. After seven years of litigation, government now has to pay an absurd amount for the utility company, but the matter was never debated in the House on Friday.  In fact, the Opposition failed to address the topic altogether, squandering an opportunity to criticize government’s bloated expense for the B.T.L. buyout.

 

Michael Finnegan, Area Representative, Mesopotamia

“I was amazed when the Opposition made that slip by in parliament. I was totally taken aback because the matter should have been debated. But they did not get up to debate the matter so the matter laid there and died there. And if the matter was debated, every member of parliament would have been given the opportunity to say something about that motion. So for them to say that the Leader of the Opposition was going to speak on it, so why now use the opportunity to talk on the matter in the debate format, which would have given all parliamentarians the opportunity to get deep down into the B.T.L. matter.”

 

Michael Finnegan

Isani Cayetano

“Is there any specific position you hold as a senior minister with regards to the B.T.L. issue itself—either the amount we have to pay, the current lawsuit to try to get this paid in US dollars? Is there any position that you have regarding this entire issue?”

 

Michael Finnegan

“I am totally in support of the government position of the B.T.L. takeover and the reason why it was taken over. And as far as I understand it and all the documents that were presented to me and I have been through, that Accommodation Agreement would have cost the Government of Belize a tidy sum, maybe more than what we are paying for B.T.L. right now and they would not own B.T.L. but the government is paying x amount of money for B.T.L.  But remember, at the end of the day, B.T.L. belong the government and people of Belize. And remember up to this stage that it has been taken over to now, the government has collected a tidy sum from B.T.L. I think it is some hundred and eighty-three million dollars or something thereabout.”

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