Posted: Thursday, February 27, 2020. 6:30 pm CST.
By BBN Staff: Leader of the Opposition, John Briceño, has written to both the British High Commission (BHC) and the Caribbean Development Bank (CDB), expressing serious concerns about the recently rolled out Coastal Road Rehabilitation Project.
In his letters, sent yesterday, Briceño told H.E. Claire Evans, British High Commissioner to Belize, and Kevin Peter Turnquest, Chairman – Board of Governors of CDB that the project is being rolled out in contravention of the Laws of Belize. He explained that the contract for the project should have been tabled at the National Assembly within 30 days of its execution, in accordance with the Finance and Audit Reform Act (FARA) and that to date, the Government of Belize (GOB) has not tabled the contract.
The FARA also stipulates that the contract should have been reviewed by the Contractor General, to which Briceño pointed out that there was no Contractor General when the contract was signed on December 2, 2019. Briceño notes that GOB’s failure to adhere to the FARA has caused the contract to proceed without much-needed oversight.
“Neither of these oversight functions can be waived by the Government Consequently, the Opposition takes strong objection to the manner in which this Contract has been granted in flagrant violation of law. You should be in no doubt, whatsoever, that the Opposition does not regard this Contract as awarded in accordance with law,” Briceño said.
He also told both the British High Commission and the CDB that Imer Hernandez Development Company Limited has “an unenviable record of
incompetence when it comes to delivery of roadworks,” and that the other company involved in the project, Construcciones y Carreteras, is apparently under investigation in Mexico for fraud.
Briceño called on both Evans and Turnquest to urgently provide him with written evidence showing that the entities they represent have ensured that the project has complied with all the relevant Laws of Belize.
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