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Mar 5, 2020

Johnny B Calls Budget Presentation a Mockery

John Briceño

We caught up with Opposition Leader John Briceño outside of the Assembly Building following the walkout.  While he remained steadfast that the motion of no-confidence should have been debated as agenda item number one, Briceño reiterated that PM Barrow should no longer be leader of government, since the results of a recent U.D.P. convention determined that John Saldivar should have taken over as prime minister.  Beyond that position, however, is the fact that the Opposition is of the firm belief that the budget is a ridiculous pretense since the Prime Minister will proceed to make supplementary allocations throughout the course of the fiscal year as he sees fit.

 

John Briceño, Leader of the Opposition

“First of all, when the House Meeting started we felt that we need to have the no-confidence motion debated first because that was going to determine what happened later on.  We believe that this is a very important motion, a motion where the Opposition has decided that we believe that we no longer have confidence in what the Prime Minister and his Cabinet are doing and the Belizean people, for instance, we have all the unions that turned against his government and they refuse for us to have that debate despite the fact that Honorable Francis Fonseca quoted Erskine Bay, what is the convention when it comes to this kind of debate.  As to the budget debate, as we pointed out that we believe that the Prime Minister should no longer be the prime minister of this country simply because under the constitution of this country it is the leader of the party that has the majority becomes the prime minister.  A few weeks ago, the U.D.P. elected John Saldivar as the new leader of the U.D.P.  Now the argument is, and so he should be the prime minister, God forbid, but as was pointed out by one of your journalists that the constitution of the U.D.P. states that it’s until the prime minister steps down then that one takes over.  My point is that the constitution of the U.D.P. cannot trump the Constitution of Belize.  The Constitution of Belize is the supreme law of the land. And the other point that we want to make with the Prime Minister making his presentation is that it is a bogus budget.  He has been found guilty to be a serial violator of the constitution and the Finance and Audit Reform Act.  Every year on average, he spends on average over about forty percent of more than what has been approved by this House.  So what he’s presenting here is bogus.  It’s bogus.  It’s false and later on he’s still going to spend whatever monies he wants and we are not going to sit down and be a part of that charade and that is why we decided that we are going to walk out.”

 

Reporter

“And you are going to go back in…”

 

John Briceño

“Yes, we are going to go back whenever he is finished with whatever mockery or whatever it is that he wants to present.”


Viewers please note: This Internet newscast is a verbatim transcript of our evening television newscast. Where speakers use Kriol, we attempt to faithfully reproduce the quotes using a standard spelling system.

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