In a time of historic financial constraints, the National Institute of History and Culture, NICH, is facing severe fiscal challenges in carrying out its mandate. According to the Ministry responsible for Culture, Francis Fonseca, the staff and Administration at NICH had their salaries slashed due to steep drops in revenue over the past year. Fonseca promised today to revitalize NICH with new programs and projects in support of culture and the arts.

Francis Fonseca, Area Representative, Freetown


“During the past year madam speaker, NICH has attempted to reduce all expenses and liabilities as best as possible while staying focused on our mandate for preservation, safeguarding and promoting Belize’s art and culture. The site revenues have declined rapidly with the site revenues for April 2020 to January 2021 being ninety-seven point seven-five percent less than that for the same period of the last fiscal year. And take total income for the same period declining seventy-five percent. Financial support to accomplish NICH’s mandate have been derived ninety percent government of Belize, five percent revenues from the archeological sites. NICH has a deficit of one point three million. The staff and administration at NICH have been on fifty percent salary, while the park rangers on the frontline protecting our national treasures are on eighty percent. They got a twenty percent cut for the same period. I cannot express how grateful I am by their patients and commitment to the sustainability and survival of NICH. I know how challenging and difficult it is for them and their families. My pledge to them and the Belizean people is that we will rebuild and revitalize NICH. We will develop new and exciting programs and project to engage with our artistic community.”

Channel 5