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GOB calls Special House sitting, UHS motion expected

Posted: Monday, December 18, 2017. 10:29 pm CST.

By BBN Staff: The government of Belize (GOB), via press release this afternoon, announced a special sitting of the House of Representatives to be held on January 5, 2018, just over two weeks away.

It is expected that the controversial motion on whether to pay $90 million to Belize Bank for the Universal Health Service (UHS) loan guarantee, made by the former People’s United Party (PUP) administration, will be tabled before parliament.

The $90 million judgment was handed down by the Caribbean Court of Justice (CCJ) in November, and since then, a number of United Democratic Party (UDP) ministers have spoken out publicly declaring in no uncertain terms that they will vote against paying the award. Various organizations and entities, including the Belize Chamber of Commerce and others have called on GOB to make the payment, citing accruing interest at 17% for each month the award remains outstanding.

The original award handed down by the London Court of International Arbitration was for $32 million. The culmination of a series of failed legal battles has seen that figure balloon to $90 million and the total will keep on tallying until the matter is resolved. Some estimates indicate that starting in January, the interest on the award will accrue to the sum of over $1 million for each passing month in addition to the standing $90 million.

 

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