Posted: Friday, May 8, 2020. 11:15 am CST.
By BBN Staff: Addressing the impasse between the Public Service Union (PSU) and the Ministry of Finance, Prime Minister Dean Barrow said today that the union is being unreasonable, given that the public officers are being asked to make the least sacrifice.
Barrow detailed Belize’s economic position this morning, explaining that the Government of Belize has a monthly expenditure of around $90 million, half of which is spent on salaries alone, but the COVID-19 pandemic brought revenue collections to just $41 million for the month of April. Barrow said that under the cost-saving measures, public officers will have their increments frozen while Ministers, Chief Executive Officers, and Heads of Departments will be giving up portions of their gratuity and benefits which amount to tens of thousands of dollars, as opposed to the hundreds of dollars being sacrificed by the group affected by the increment freeze.
“I say without reservation that the opposition is unacceptable. Everybody else must suffer, everybody else must sacrifice, but not them,” Barrow said.
He added that GOB will do what it must to get the much-needed economic relief, and noted that even if the PSU takes the matter to court, it has been proven that no court can force GOB to pay money that it does not have.
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