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Jul 15, 2022

How Do We Find $5 Million for Marijuana Referendum

The House of Representatives met today in a marathon session that ran for several hours and there was a lot that was covered during the sitting.  Among them was the introduction of a supplementary allocation to cover the cost of the upcoming cannabis referendum.  The national vote on the establishment of a marijuana industry in Belize has been estimated to cost five million dollars. It is a hefty price tag for an exercise that neither the country, nor the government had expected to pay for. But the churches were successful at garnering the requisite ten percent of the electorate in a petition on the topic. Hence, it has triggered a referendum that has to be held by September fourth. During a break in today’s house meeting, the media had an opportunity to speak with Prime Minister John Briceño on this and other topics. Here’s how the PM answered questions on how this cost was calculated.


Prime Minister John Briceño

“It’s going to come as – under the Cap II and it’s an expense that well have to face. This is a pittance to what was spent for the ICJ Referendum. We’re trying to hold down the cost. The cost of a referendum is not only what it will cost for the Elections and Boundaries Commission – what they will spend, but also, there has to be an information campaign so that people could truly understand what is going to happen, what is the question and inform people properly so that when they go to the polls, they can make a decision based on what they believe how they should answer the question.”

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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