Two sugar associations lodge a complaint after the adoption of the law amending the law on the sugar industry

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Posted: Saturday, December 4, 2021. 3:42 p.m. CST.

By Aaron Humes: The Progressive Sugar Cane Farmers Association (“Progressive”) and Corozal Sugar Cane Growers Association (“CSCPA”) jointly expressed “extreme dismay” that they were not consulted on the amendment’s passage. to the law on the sugar industry during Friday’s meeting of the Chamber of Deputies.

Seemingly feeling targeted, the associations say they have written to the Sugar Industry Control Board and the Minister of Agriculture and Food Security and other key actors in the sugar industry to set out the reasons clearly reasons for the postponement of the elections.

They claim that permission for mass gatherings to facilitate the assembly and holding of elections was granted after the time limit; and the CSCPA says the majority of its members have called for the delay and the status quo to be maintained. This last claim was openly derided by Prime Minister John Briceño in the House when he said that if an association can get a petition to delay an election of a majority of its members, it can certainly hold one.

Nonetheless, Progressive and CSCPA say the matter was misrepresented in the Northern press and they say they haven’t had a chance to sit down and explain themselves, and are now victims of a “heavy and very disturbing measure”. They are also asserting their right to independence and freedom of association following the partial dissolution of the Belize Sugar Cane Farmers Association (BSCFA) by order of the Supreme Court.

The associations have warned that they will challenge the case in court and launch a public campaign to explain their side of the story.


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Rachel J. Bradford