The last time we interviewed Lord Michael Ashcroft was back in February 2009; that was before Telemedia was first nationalized. He hasn’t been to Belize since then and we had not heard from him at this station until this morning when we interviewed him, live and direct from Miami in a candid one hour interview that touched a range of hot button issues. As you know government has locked horns with the biggest investor in the local economy over a myriad of issues that evolved around Ashcroft’s business interests, such as the Belize Bank. Litigation has been endless and millions of dollars have been spent by the government in the constant battles in local and foreign court rooms. But in the case of Telemedia not paid a penny has been paid to Ashcroft in compensation and instead, government went back to court four weeks ago to fix the acquisition of the telecoms after a ruling from the Court of Appeal. On Open Your Eyes, Ashcroft touched on this and a slew of other issues, including the continuous battle with the government, the investment climate and his perspective going forward. Ashcroft also confirmed that the Belize Bank still retains the law firm of the Prime Minister for legal representation.

Lord Michael Ashcroft

“The law firm on a number of transactions has done a good job over the years and so I think the bank take the view that there’s no necessity to change. But perhaps what is ironic is between Barrow and Williams, which of course the prime minister has an interest in and Lois Young as his ex-wife is they have received from my group of companies, millions of dollars in legal fees until, of course, this administration came in to power a couple of years ago.”

Marleni Cuellar

“And now they continue to use the services of Barrow and Williams?”

Lord Michael Ashcroft

Lord Michael Ashcroft

“Yes, I understand for a certain amount of work that the bank does, they use the firm.”

Marleni Cuellar

“How does it make you feel when the prime minister calls out other persons like Marcel Cardona for receiving the scholarships, other persons who have some sort of relationship with companies associated with you?”

Lord Michael Ashcroft

“Well it’s all part of the political rhetoric. It’s all part of the cynicism of politics. I once said in the context that I can tell when a politician is lying is when his lips move and I’ve seen a lot of lips moving in the last few years.”

Channel 5