B.N.T.U.’s Palacio Says There is More to be Clarified
According to B.N.T.U. National President Luke Palacio, the court has pointed out that there is confusion in the language used in the trust document, particularly in a release issued by government back in 2014 when the accounts were handed over to the unions.
Luke Palacio, National President, B.N.T.U.
“This matter has been going on and our members of the Public Service Union, the Belize National Teachers Union, the Nurses Association, the B.D.F., the police, all who are paid from the government purse and increments were frozen back in 1996, are to be beneficiaries of the trust. Again, like Dr. Castillo has pointed out, there is no money that changed hands. The government back then had reinstated the increment, there was a lump sum payment made, if we look at the circulars. So therefore, the government’s position was, and we have that in writing, that as long as a trust was developed and presented to G.O.B. there would have been no questions asked. That the monies that G.O.B. held at the treasury which are monies derived from dividends from the B.T.L. shares would have been handed over to the trust. When we handed over that trust to the government there were no questions. In fact, they said go ahead and form your trust, the monies were transferred and the trustees were in place and the trust specifically states that the trustees had the power to add beneficiaries and we followed that. The matter of the protectors of the trust, which is a question that has also arisen in the trust deed that we presented to government indicated that for the time being the presidents of the B.N.T.U., the P.S.U. and the Police Association would be the protectors of the trust. The settlers of the trust would have been the B.N.T.U. and the P.S.U., so all of those things were outlined in the trust and there were no objections.”
Palacio says that the issue of payment to the claimants regarding dividends needs to be clarified.