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Oct 7, 2019

Land Reclamation; Who Got Paid and How Much?

John Briceño

The Government of Belize has borrowed more than fifty million dollars to upgrade twenty miles of the George Price Highway, from the Roaring Creek Bridge to the Hawkesworth Bridge in Santa Elena, Cayo. The first multimillion dollar loan was made in 2015 and in 2018 an additional fourteen million dollars were borrowed from the International Development Bank for the reclamation of land along the highway. In November 2018, the Prime Minister told the House of Representatives that acquiring properties was necessary to allow for the widening of the highway and would be negotiated with the landowners at a reasonable price. The negotiations were anything else but reasonable and on Friday Opposition Leader John Briceño asked Works Minister Rene Montero for the list of the persons who are being compensated and the cost being paid to them.

 

John Briceño, Leader of the Opposition

“Will the Minister of Works please provide this honorable house with whom this government negotiating or has agreed to paid such compensation and how much has been agreed to paid to each person or entity?”

 

Rene Montero

Rene Montero, Minister of Works

“Madam Speaker, I previously responded to his first question but now the honorable member is asking for further details, including names of individuals who were compensated and the amount, a request I have no problem in acceding to but in all fairness to those persons Madam Speaker who might not appreciate their names called on national television I have furnishing the member with a list under separate cover.”

 

John Briceño

“We have no confidence in what will be seeing lately of what has been taking place. I also want to point out Madam Speaker, that we have every right, it is tax payer monies and we have every right to be able to get the answer. So I will be waiting for the letter and if he doesn’t not answer me properly I will come back again and I will ask and ask until he gives us the names as to have full discloser on how the taxpayer’s monies are being spent.”


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