Requena: “Its a Total Shame”

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Updated: November 17, 2017

Some seventy-eight Alcaldes in Southern Belize are upset with the Government because they say they have not been paid what they are due. Alcaldes form part of the Inferior Court system and they act as magistrates, making formal rulings over disputed matters. The first Alcade and the Second Alcalde are paid one hundred dollars and fifty dollars respectively every month. They say they have not received payment since they were officially sworn in two months ago and since they began carrying out their responsibilities in January. Toledo West Area Representative, Oscar Requena is demanding that the Attorney General Michael Peyrefitte keep his word.

Oscar Requena

“The matter of the Alcaldes not receiving their salaries is a matter that was brought up to his attention, in fact, he spoke on the matter and promised that the Alcaldes were going to get their pay immediately. Man we are in the middle of November already reaching out to December and the Alcaldes have not gotten their pay and this is totally out of order. I am making a special call to the Prime Minister as the elected representative of Toledo West where I represent over 28 communities that have first and second Alcaldes and similarly for the rest of the Alcaldes in the rest of the Toledo East and Stann Creek where we have Alcaldes that it is time that the Prime Minister looks into this matter and ensures that these Alcaldes that it is time that the Prime Minister looks into this matter and ensures that these Alcaldes get their salaries. These Alcaldes play a very important role, these are local magistrates they maintain law and order in our community and what is the stipend? A $100 for the first Alcalde and $50 for the second Alcalde its a total shame. It is $100 per month and $50 for the second Alcalde. You’re talking about a total of 78 Alcaldes between the first and second Alcaldes.”

Reporter

“So they are owed that money since when?”

Oscar Requena

“They are owed that money since January since January they have not collected a single penny and I am saying that it is high time that the Prime Minister deals with this matter because seemingly the Attorney General is not going to be true to his word.”

Reporter

“There was also a concern they have sworn in two months ago so what if the government only gives them two months?”

Oscar Requena

“Well I would hope that that would not be the case, that government would honor its commitment these people have been working from January and they should be paid every single penny that they are owed.”

The Attorney General’s office carried out training for the Alcaldes and officially sworn them in September. Back then, Peyrefitte stated that the Alcaldes are now aware of their authority and their limitations. As for the payment due, we understand that the Attorney General Ministry forwards the details to the Minister of Finance which then transfers the sum to the Ministry of Local Government which then deposits the funds into the Alcades’ accounts.