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Oct 13, 2009

Telemedia Employees Trust taking GOB to court

Story PictureBack in August, the government compulsorily acquired Belize Telemedia. The value of the company has been placed at three hundred million US dollars. And now the Employees Trust, which holds a twenty-two percent stake in the company, has launched a constitutional motion challenging the expropriation of the company. The value of the trust is now being placed at one hundred million Belize dollars. The Trust is being represented by Attorney Godfrey Smith.

Godfrey Smith, Attorney for B.T.L. Employees Trust
“I represent the trustees of the B.T.L. Employees Trust and as your channel reported last week Friday, we filed in the Supreme Court of Belize the constitutional action challenging the act and the S.I. by virtue of which Telemedia was expropriated, nationalized by the government of Belize.”

Jose Sanchez
“Who are the trustees?”

Godfrey Smith
“The trustees are Keith Arnold and Dean Boyce.”

Jose Sanchez
“So you report directly to them.”

Godfrey Smith
“I have received instructions from them to bring this action.”

Jose Sanchez
“What stake do they have in B.T.L. and how much are those shares worth?”

Godfrey Smith
“The employees trust had a stake of twenty-two percent. It depends on which value you go by. You’ve heard the government of Belize, through the prime minister, say compensation has to be paid. He was, however, saying that the overall value of the shares is more like Belize three hundred million. By the higher figure you’re talking one hundred million, a hundred and twenty, a hundred and thirty million dollars Belize as the value if you were to get full market value for the shares. And after the trustees would have paid off outstanding loans, because you may recall that the twenty-two percent was funded through debt. After that is paid off there would be still a large amount of money to be distributed among the beneficiaries who are the employees.”

Smith will be a guest on tomorrow morning’s Open Your Eyes with co host William Neal and I at six thirty a.m. right here on Channel Five.

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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