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On Thursday we told you about the letter that was sent to the former chairman and vice chairman of the Orange Walk Liquor Licensing Board. After receiving their appointment letter back in the month of January 2017, Alvaro Grajalez and John Pollard received a letter in the month of February relinquishing them from their duties effective immediately from the Minister of Local Government Hugo Patt. In the letter both men were being informed that a new Liquor Licensing Board was being appointed and taking over as chairman was Rodolfo Novelo and Victor Vargas as vice chairman.


So what motives did Minister Patt have to kick Grajalez and Pollard to the curve? We posed that question to him during a meeting held in Corozal with onion producers on Friday and here is his response.


Screen_Shot_2017-02-13_at_8.09.17_PMHonourable Hugo Patt – Area Representative Corozal North


“It is my understanding and indeed it was brought up to me that the liquor licensing board for the Orange Walk District needed a lot of reinforcement, I understand that they have quite some difficulties in being able to even meet and get the agenda of that particular board in time and so the ministry saw it fit that we put people with the adequate time and representation so that we can have the agenda or the work done by that particular board to be completed in time and so it was on the basis of that recommendation that eventually the ministry took the decision to reappoint certain members.”


Reporter


“Was it for a matter of efficiency?”


Honourable Hugo Patt – Area Representative Corozal North


“Indeed, bear in mind that there are certain boards in the country that have done an excellent job and my word to everybody was that if there was a particular board that was doing the work that it is mandated to do we will make no changes, my own opinion is why would you change something that is working to one that possible might just alter the efficiency of what is being done.”


Reporter


“We noted that just two members of the old board were replaced is it that to say that the issues that you raised just now were specifically with those two persons?”


Honourable Hugo Patt – Area Representative Corozal North


“I understand that the people who were changed had certain difficulties in being able to attend the meetings, while in law the appointments are there to be done every year and I will tell you because I will be meeting with each and every board that I have is that if there were changes made and the changes do not reflect the kind of efficiency that we are looking at, it doesn’t mean that you will be there for the rest of the term with us if there is a board that needs to be changed even if it is a month before the actual expiry date then we will be looking at those at the end of the day what I am looking for is that the boards are producing to the necessity of the people who depend on them to be able to carry on their business.”

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