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Apr 28, 2004

Printers Assn. sues G.O.B. over privatisation

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They have been vocal opponents of the privatization of the Government Printery. And today the Printers Association took G.O.B. to court seeking to have full disclosure of the agreement that moved the facility on Power Lane in Belmopan from a public entity into private ownership last July. President of the Association, Amparo Noble, says the sell off has seriously disrupted the equilibrium of the industry giving Print Belize a distinct and unfair advantage over its competitors. Noble says all other avenues have been exhausted and so the Association has no other option but to seek Judicial review in the Supreme Court.

Amparo Noble, President, Printers Association

“The association has been very concerned that the decision to privatise was not done with the best interest of the printing industry. And that’s basically what we’re trying to do here, to get some kind of disclosure, openness, transparency, and find out what exactly took place.”

Patrick Jones

“What do you hope to achieve by bringing this to the Supreme Court?”

Amparo Noble

“It all depends; I think we are looking for again transparency. We feel that the, and I think I am talking for the association, all the members of the association, that the government printers really should be an entity for the government and not necessarily a private entity. The way it was carried on certainly poses some kind of unfair competition to the other printers, and there are smaller printers who are hurting already.”

The Belize Printers Association, comprising nine members, is represented by senior counsel Lois Young Barrow, while Solicitor General Elson Kaseke is representing G.O.B. The case, which is being heard before Justice Denys Barrow, was adjourned until Friday morning.

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