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Aug 23, 2022

U.D.P. Chairman Says Illegal B.I.S.L Acquisition Profits Belizeans

Michael Peyrefitte

On Monday, we told you about the discounted settlement that the Government of Belize has signed on to for financial damages payable to the Belize International Services Limited. As we reported, B.I.S.L was forcibly acquired by government under former Prime Minister Dean Barrow in 2013. The initial ask from B.I.S.L was seventy million U.S. dollars; following a July 2020 C.C.J. ruling which determined that the appropriation was illegal. Today, we heard from U.D.P. Chairman Michael Peyrefitte on the settlement.


Michael Peyrefitte, Chairman, U.D.P.

“Personally I don’t agree with it. To be honest with you, it is close to eighty million dollars. It is a matter that I am sure will be before the Senate on Monday. But, my question is this, why are we so efficient, why are we such in a rush when it comes to paying Michael Ashcroft. That is eighty million dollars. This man is a billionaire. This man has made hundreds of millions of dollars from Belize. He can’t donate that? He can’t give that to us. Even the Prime Minister I believe when he spoke last night, if I could understand him well, and he is difficult to understand, the amount of money we collect in one year, according to him, is close to about ninety million dollars. And, every year the expenses of the B.I.S.L. are what, nine million dollars? We make close to seventy, eighty million dollars a year profit from that organization. So, had we not blocked the extension of that contract, Ashcroft would have been getting all that money all these years. While now, compared to that, yes he gets thirty eight million dollars. But remember, we are able to settle on thirty eight million dollars U.S. simply because the U.D.P. decided that was something in the interest of the Belizean people to keep.”



“Were you negotiating the payment toward the B.I.S.L.?”


Michael Peyrefitte

“Absolutely, any matter that is before the court we try to negotiate it to see if we can get some kind of deal, so the court doesn’t have to decide.”





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