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Apr 16, 2021

Teachers Picketing Across the Country

Elsewhere, the numbers seemed greater, especially in the Capital, Belmopan. B.N.T.U. members paraded in front of the B.T.L. branch on the Ring Road and the Smart Belmopan branch on Constitution Drive. Wearing their green “teechaz gat yuh bak” shirts, the sweltering heat did not stop the picketing.  Duane Moody has more.


Norlan Galvez, B.N.T.U. President, Belmopan

“Today’s initiative is basically the beginning of what we all have planned. Everybody by now knows that we are out here for a reason. We disagree with the ten percent cut and for a big reason. We have big businesses that are not paying their taxes. If these people would pay their tax, we wouldn’t be in this situation at this present moment. So that is why we are here. If we can pay our tax, our tax is automatically deducted out of our pay. And if they can do it for us, why can’t they do it for the big businesses?”


Duane Moody, Reporting

Norlan Galvez says that it is about equality across the board for all taxpayers, including businesses which have not been paying their taxes.  She says non-payment by corporate entities has been a perennial issue that continues to go unaddressed.


Norlan Galvez

Norlan Galvez

“If we collect those monies, the sixty million that this government is dying for, they can get it in one payment from certain businesses. So it is very, very unfair, for teachers, the people who work hard in this country are the people who are going to suffer. And the people who work in the office are the parents if our children. And the parents are the ones who support the schools. So if the parents do not have, then the school does not have and then the education system falls apart.”


One teacher breaks down why a salary cut and increment freeze for public officers and teachers is not the answer.


Melvin Martinez

Melvin Martinez, Teacher

“We have to take into consideration that teachers and everybody have commitments and as teachers, we have commitments that we need to meet and if they take away our ten percent then we will be at a disadvantage.”



“Yes but what are some of your bills?”


Melvin Martinez

“Well we have bank loans and we have other bills that we need to pay as well.”


B.N.T.U. Belmopan President Galvez says that even as the current administration was in opposition and knew the state of the economy, they failed to have a plan.


Norlan Galvez

“From before yo get into that position you shoulda mi already have a plan so that when yo come in, then yo put in yo plan. So now yo party is in, the first thing you do is kick the poor. That’s the first thing yo do and the teachers always get the bigger stick of the bukut.  The people who educate the people in this country always get the roughest part of the stick which is unfair.”


Duane Moody for News Five.


According to a plan of action that was leaked to the media earlier this week, this coming Monday, parts of the highway will be blocked for fifteen minutes, including the entrance to the Capital.  In Orange Walk, Centaur Communications issued a statement saying today that they do not owe any back taxes and respect the rights of the B.N.T.U. to take industrial action. Centaur also stresses that their corporate citizenship includes providing free cable and internet access to schools in the Corozal, Orange Walk and Belize districts in support of the shift to remote learning due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

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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