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#31147 11/10/00 12:07 PM
Joined: Apr 2000
Posts: 498
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The following article was from The Reporter Newspaper.

BTL loses round 2

Belize Telecommunications Limited suffered another setback in the Supreme Court this week, when Justice George Meerabux ruled to further extend his injunction against the company.

The injunction bars BTL from placing restrictions on the use of its Internet service, and further bars the company from blocking the importation of electronic devices (notably the I.P.Star) which can enhance consumer use and enjoyment of the Internet.

This week's ruling extends the life of the injunction until the conflicting claims can be settled in court. The matter is expected to come before Chief Justice Abdulai Conteh on Wednesday, November 15.

BTL claims that it has an exclusive license to operate both telephone and Internet services in and over Belize, to the exclusion of everything and everybody else.
In his written judgement extending the injunction last week Justice Meerabux examined this claim by BTL when he wrote:

"In exercising my discretion in granting this injunction, I had to consider the additional issue of whether the exclusive telecommunications license enjoyed by the defendant (BTL) constitutes not only an interference with the enshrined constitutional guarantee of freedom of expression, but can be justified in the public interest...

He proceeded to say: "I find that the alleged transgressions or trespassing of any one of the fundamental rights enshrined in the Constitution of Belize, which is the Supreme and paramount law, requires urgent action.

" We should not procrastinate and fall asleep on alleged breaches of these sacred rights on the body politic of Belize.

" The price of freedom is eternal vigilance in pursuing the fundamental rights of freedom of expression and freedom of speech...

Upholding the Court's injunction, Justice Meerabux wrote:
" I find that the issue of freedom of expression and freedom of speech are questions of public interest and are crucial factors to be considered... I find that the length of the injunction was fully justified in the circumstances. For these reasons the application to discharge the injunction is refused".

The second round of this high stakes game will come when Chief Justice Abdulai Conteh takes up the substantive case next week, and weighs the constitutional arguments which will be raised against the claim of BTL to exclusive domain over the Internet.

[This message has been edited by Sandcrab (edited 11-10-2000).]

#31148 11/10/00 08:20 PM
Joined: Apr 2000
Posts: 4,262
Very interesting.

Gone fishing!!
#31149 11/11/00 12:01 AM
Joined: Nov 2001
Posts: 431
Big round of applause for Justice Meerabux!!!!

I think the problem lies in the fact that BTL is has total control of both telecommunications and internet and when it comes to a profit for BTL....the two clash!

They want their cake and eat it too!
Life don't work that way. can have internet service....but there are some features of the free world wide web....that you as Belizeans cannot enjoy.....because it doesn't involve making money for BTL.

Well!......isn't that a convenient viewpoint?


BTL is just pissed because now it has to get up off it's haunches and actually start working to make that profit. Before now....they just sat back and let it fall in their lap.
I would think with the upcoming closure of their contract, they would be striving to get on the good side of Belizeans....offering better and faster service....more options...and selling the I.P. Star themselves.
It cost about $800 for the I've heard....that in itself can add up to a lot of money...or them. Most Belizeans don't have $800 to put out for one of these units....but if they rented them for say $10 a month and charged it on their saves the customer in long distance....and BTL gets long term rental fees for everyone that uses it.....not to mention coming out the hero in the eyes of the customer for offering such a great service.

Use your head need some savvy marketing plans right now.

Yes..they may bring in other ISP's....but BTL could still be here and in business...and has the advantage of being already established. This country is big enough for more than one provider.

Don't bite off your nose to spite your face BTL.....LOL

[This message has been edited by Sandshaker (edited 11-10-2000).]

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