Prime Minister Provides an Outline of the New Publicly Owned and Operated Boledo Gaming Group Limited

May 21, 2023 | Government

Prime Minister said that going forward the revenue from Boledo will go to fund the NHI

Belize (May 19, 2023) — John Briceno, Prime Minister: “From big to small countries, the business of lottery is something that governments pay close attention to and the successful ones, use the profits from the lottery to improve the lives of their people, not just a few special interest persons. It is time for us in Belize to use a similar model to what is being employed in places like Costa Rica and Canada to distribute the Belize Government Lotteries so that like Costa Rica and Canada we can use the revenue to help improve the lives of our people.”

“So, what is the plan? the plan is then to establish a government-own company that will have its own legislation that defines its key functions and responsibilities. For example, this company which the government will establish as the Belize Government Lotteries Limited. All the winnings, all the profits from the lotteries, are to administer our national health insurance (NHI) and to the official charities fund which we hope we could do some more monies for sports for young people and maybe even some money for education.”

“B.GL.L. will be a company with a core mandate for the sale of the government lottery services to provide revenue to the government of Belize to fund the NHI and the official charities fund. It will be run by a board of directors that will meet regularly to set corporate management and oversight policies of the corporation. The day-to-day management of the corporation will be administered by a managing director who will be assisted by an IT specialist, a financial controller administrator, customer service, marketing and a quality assurance compliance manager. There will be a tendering process to identify adequate master agents. These are the persons who are entities that will be allowed to distribute boledo. Four master agents will be chosen; one for the north, south, east and one for the west of the country.”

“The B.G.L.L will build a digital platform and begin setting up an extensive sale distribution network through these 4 master agents. These master agents will have an agreement with the corporation to have sales countrywide through sub-agents and electronic sales.”

“The second implementation phase of the digital lottery platform will see the consumer being able to purchase through their mobile phones. This innovation is projected to increase sales and ensure that consumers are allowed to easily check the winning numbers. The system will also secure winning tickets electronically, so no more about losing your tickets and being unable to redeem your prize. Whilst we know Belizeans miss their boledo, we want to ensure that boledo is once again Belizean, for Belizeans and that it is properly administered.”

And while he said a whole lot the PM gave no estimated date for the resumption of Boledo – bad news for regular Belizeans who are in deep withdrawal.

But he did share some eyebrow-raising details on the contrast in sales figures reported by Brad’s under two years of the PUP as opposed to 10 years under the UDP:

John Briceno, Prime Minister:

“The new lotteries commission started to take a look at what they are doing. In 10 years from 2010 – 2020 and I forget to bring the file to show you how thick the file is. They did no checking on these people. None, not even a letter. Absolutely nothing in 10 years of the lottery commission back then under the UDP. Zero, they ask them for nothing. You are asking why? Why is it that the then prime minister and the ministers in cabinet would at least say what is happening with the lottery, are they following up with the agreement that they have? Are they complying with the law? 10 years – nothing. No checking.”

“But in 2021 when we wrote the first letter, I think it was in August. The lotteries commission wrote the first letter asking for information. All of a sudden, sales went from 18.7 million to 43.8 million dollars – all of a sudden you know, 43.3 million, because we wrote them. Because of what has happened, they realize that if they don’t keep up to what is being asked of them, they could eventually lose the contract.”

“Under the PUP, they reported 125.6 million dollars in sales. Under the UDP, for 10 years they reported 128.6 million dollars. 3 million dollars more they reported under the UDP for 10 years and you could basically say under the PUP government when we start to check on them, they went up to 125.6 million dollars. Of this 125 million dollars, you know what we get? 11.1 million dollars.”

SOURCE: 7 News Belize.

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