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Oct 14, 2016

Will Chamber of Commerce Support B.N.T.U. with Shutdown of Businesses?

Mark Lizarraga

Earlier today, the Belize Chamber of Commerce and Industry advised its members that it is yet to receive a formal response to a letter written to the Prime Minister on their positions taken in respect of a shutdown of businesses countrywide and their withdrawal from the senate select committee. When he was asked about support from the Chamber, Palacio doesn’t seem quite sold on the idea that the B.C.C.I. was in full support of B.N.T.U.’s cause.  Business Senator Mark Lizarraga has gone on record to say that the Chamber shares similar views to those of the teachers and that B.C.C.I.’s membership is prepared to act once government fails to honor the list of demands. 

 

Mark Lizarraga, Business Senator

“A date for the shutdown has not been identified.  That needs to be identified by the executive, but it is clear that the membership is saying we’re sending a message, we’re not happy.  We want these things in place and we are prepared to go to a shutdown if necessary.  I believe that our membership left that discretion with the executive because they knew that negotiations were continuing and were the giving the government every opportunity, I believe, to try and address these issues.  And, as a matter of fact, we are working with them on, we are working with the government on many of the issues an d we even proposed timeframes for which these issues can be addressed, and timeframes, we believe, that are practical and can be achieved.  So I think the business community has shown its patience, has shown its desire to resolve these issues through negotiations as well and I believe that in the same instances it’s supporting the teachers and saying, we share these positions with you and we are ready to act if these positions are not met.”

 

Luke Palacio

Luke Palacio, National President, B.N.T.U.

“I don’t know if they have joined in the fight.  Remember, like we’ve said you know, these national issues have been espoused by a number of organizations; many organizations, many individuals, many entities have raised these same national issues.  It is just that the B.N.T.U. has decided to take decisive action to get the government’s attention and to get the attention of the Belizean public that these things are affecting our country negatively.  So anybody, any organization that has decided that they want to lend support to this action we appreciate it.”

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