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Feb 4, 2021

P.S.U. Says One Year Time Period for Fire Sale Investigation Unacceptable

Last month, Prime Minister John Briceño signed an order convening a Commission of Inquiry to investigate the sale of government assets between October 2019 and November 2020.  The meeting will be held in public, so we’ll get to see how the commission investigates the procedures and processes for the sale of assets by the Barrow administration to determine if any illegality occurred.  If that is the case, those responsible will be identified and criminal and civil cases against them will be pursued. Senior Counsel Andrew Marshalleck chairs the commission.  He is accompanied by Belize Chamber of Commerce and Industry representative Marcello Blake and representative for the Public Service Union Luke Martinez.  Martinez says the P.S.U. is not happy about the short period that the commission is going to investigate.  He says that the past administration was in power for three terms and the P.S.U. was asking for an investigation that would review eight years.  He says that the one-year period is unacceptable.

 

Luis Martinez

Luis Martinez, President, N.T.U.C.B.

“The Public Service Union is not satisfied in one year or thirteen months time period for the investigation. That is certainly not going to yield the answers that the people are looking for. Originally when we wrote to the Financial Secretary last year we had requested eight years. To get one year, that is not acceptable for the Public Service Union so the Public Service Union will get to the table and we will recommend to the Prime Minister to revisit the one year period.”

 

Hipolito Novelo

“But isn’t eight years going to take longer for the investigation?”

 

Luis Martinez

“We can go back to the table and meet somewhere in the middle. But one year is not acceptable. It is not. The assets of the government of Belize belong to the Belize so we have to be able to ensure that we take proper care, proper account of the assets of the government of Belize. So that is one of the primary aims of the Public Service Union. So the Public Service Union is going to reach out to the Prime Minister and see how we can revisit that one year period.”


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