BELIZE CITY, Wed. Jan. 20, 2021– During an interview on Wednesday, Prime Minister Hon. John Briceño told local media that his government had just gotten wind of the huge purchase-sale agreement between the Public Utilities Commission (PUC) and Boutros Bou-Nahra Company Limited, the owners of the Mirab department store. The purchase agreement, which is for the sale of a building in which the store was previously located, on North Front Street, is being reviewed with hopes that it can be legally reversed.
According to the Minister of Public Utilities, Hon. Rodwell Ferguson, almost 9 million dollars of the agreed price of the building and property remains unpaid by the PUC, and the cash-strapped commission does not even have the funds to carry out the necessary renovation to the existing structure.
“When I got into the department or the Public Utilities Commission to meet the Director for the first time, that was shown to me, and I said, this is what is occurring and it’s robbing the cradle, because the country is in a serious pandemic. We’re in a serious financial crisis, and at a time like this they would see it fit to purchase a building for ten point three million Belize dollars when Belizeans are suffering.” Minister Ferguson commented.
Prime Minister Hon. John Briceño said that the contracts were drafted by the Barrow administration to be airtight. Because of this, getting out of the PUC/Mirab purchase-agreement may be difficult, but they are awaiting legal advice on how to proceed.