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Jan 10, 2020

Will Government Ever Vote to Pay U.H.S. Debt?

Michael Peyrefitte

While the matter has been voted down in the National Assembly, during a move in which the opposition walked out of the House of Representatives and abstained from the process, interest on the monies continues to grow exponentially.  According to AG Peyrefitte, theoretically, if the Belize Bank continues to withhold its business tax payments the debt will be gradually reduced.


Isani Cayetano

“Might it be argued that parliament is deliberately dragging its foot in bringing the matter for vote based on either [being] obstinate or political expediency?”


Michael Peyrefitte, Attorney General

“Didn’t parliament already vote no on it?  Parliament has already voted no on it.  It was brought before the house and the house voted no.  So then, Ashcroft would have to wait until there’s some parliament is in place to vote yes.  But this U.D.P. parliament, the majority of the parliament under the U.D.P. government has said we will not vote to procure monies for what we believe was an illegal transaction.  So parliament has already voted, parliament can always change its vote and vote a different way, but for now the position is that this parliament will not vote for the money.”



“Sir, so in the meantime does that judgment debt keep on accruing interest?”


Michael Peyrefitte

“Yes it does, it does keep on accruing interest but we believe that what’s most important, even more important than the amount of money paid, is that we don’t believe that we should pay to benefit an individual who did not engage in an arms-length transaction.  So yes, you can talk about the money and it’s very important but at the same time if we believe in this parliament that if we vote to procure monies for that we would be sanctioning what we believe was an illegal transaction.”


Isani Cayetano

“What then happens if the Belize Bank which is the primary instrument or vehicle for the Ashcroft group decides to continue withholding taxes as it has in the past, in respect of this particular debt?”


Michael Peyrefitte

“Well then, if they could continue to withhold the taxes then the debt would slowly be paid down then.  If they continue to do that then they can no longer claim that they have a debt to be paid.  I guess it would be wound down until finally the debt is satisfied if that’s the continued course that they will take.”

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