REPORT #366 August 2000

Produced by the Belize Development Trust

Finance Minister Fonseca complained recently that foreign lenders to the government of Belize are ripping them off, with exorbitant charges for studies and consultations. It seems that the Inter Development Bank is doing it again to the tune of half a million Belizean dollars.

An announcement in the Conch Telegraph newspaper of Caye Caulker of July 29th, 2000 says; that is the fee being paid for a study to put in a water and sewage system for the tourist/lobster island community. Currently under contract is Mr. John McGill of the Nippin Josgesuido Sekkei Consulting Firm. The study for half a million dollars is to take five months.

I firmly agree with Fonseca for a change. This is a ripoff, unless somebody else is paying for it!

Who needs five months for this? What a crock! Water and sewage systems for small barrier islands are a dime a dozen in the catalogues and on the internet. Been around for decades. We are not re-inventing the wheel here! Other than location of the plant and some measurements for pipe lengths, what else is needed for an off the shelf water and sewage treatment plant?

Half a million dollars and five months to study this is about as phoney a deal to saddle somebody with as I've ever heard. Heck, the Belize Development Trust will hire Peter Singfield and the Caye Caulker Village Council and do it for $25,000. You want a study, you got it! Take about a week to do. Five months, you must be dealing with morons? I question the competency of any consultancy that needs five months. Give em three weeks to the outside.

Yup! For once I agree with Finance Minister Fonseca. The lending agencies like the Inter Development Bank are rip off extortion artists. Be better off, just prefabricating a 1000 mass produced concrete 500 gallon individual concrete rain water cachement tanks to install next to each house. Come out cheaper. The price of the study alone would more than do that.

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