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Apr 28, 2020

Senate Approves S.O.E. Extension

Michel Chebat

The Senate today approved the motion to extend the State of Emergency by an additional sixty days. Unlike sittings before the COVID-19 pandemic, at today’s session only five senators participated in the proceedings.  Michel Chebat represented the opposition People’s United Party. Minister Godwin Hulse and Attorney General Michael Peyrefitte represented the Government and Senator Elena Smith presented on behalf of the social partners. At the House Meeting on Monday, the opposition did not hold back and threw punches at the government. Today, lead opposition senator Chebat took the cue and criticized the government, saying that for the past few weeks the Belizean public has been suffering without jobs, money, and food.


Michel Chebat, P.U.P. Senator

“We are here today to extend the State of Emergency for sixty more days. But do you know what has happened these past thirty days? Let me tell you. And I will break it down Mr. President because I want even the children who are possible listening to understand what has happened. Very simply, no job which means no money which mean no food which means Mr. President that people are hungry and that means that people are desperate. Do you understand the gravity of this? No job. No money.  Do you know what it means to be hungry, in this room? None of us know. You can feed your family. I could feed my family. We are not feeling that pain. But the people out there, know what it means to be hungry. They know Mr President and it is easy for us to come here and pass a law for sixty more days when we are failing to deliver basic food to the most needy of our people.  For the last fourteen days the Ministry of Health has been saying that we have no new case. So then what is the justification for extending the State of Emergency? The answer is simple. The Ministry of Health itself apparently does not believe in its own statistics and that is why we are being asked to shut down for sixty more days.  The Prime Minister said that ‘no money no de’. One month in and ‘no money no de.’ Thirty days of State of Emergency and no more money de. Now he wants us to extend for sixty more days. Well, ‘weh the money gwan?’ At the beginning at the State of Emergency the Prime Minister poke of a fund of a hundred million dollars plus all the other tens and tens of millions of dollars that were being donated or obtained through the IFIs. Again, where is the money? Where did the money go?”

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