By Gilroy Usher, Sr.
“I believe that there will ultimately be a clash between the oppressed and those who do the oppressing. I believe that there will be a clash between those who want freedom, justice, and equality for everyone and those who want to continue the system of exploitation.” ― Malcolm X
Christmas cheer is a good idea. Many marginalized families need the assistance to spread the joy of the holy season in their homes. The allocation of the funds is a different matter. It is wrong to allocate $25,000.00 as Christmas cheer for each UDP member in the House, but only allot half that amount for Opposition members of the same body. Since all of us pay the taxes that are used for Christmas cheer, members of the House should be given the same amount of funds to assist the residents of their divisions in the season of advent. It is also wrong and unfair to only allocate Christmas cheer for UDP political officers (persons who are not members of the House). As stated earlier all of us pay the taxes that are used for the worthy event; therefore political officers from both the governing UDP and the Opposition should receive the same amount of funds to help spread the joy of Christmas in their constituencies.
Christmas cheer also reminds us that despite all the sweet talk of the ministers and their cronies, this is one of the most corrupt government in the history of Belize. Below are two examples of the many instances of malfeasance perpetuated by the crowd in Belmopan.
The administration has allocated $650,000.00 for Christmas cheer for the entire nation. But with the assistance of many crooked ministers Pitts and Vega each got $400,000.00 of taxpayers’ money in a bogus land compensation. Together those two UDP political cronies walked away with $800,000.00 of taxpayers’ money for themselves. That is $150,000.00 more than the Christmas cheer for the entire country.
This year less than 3/4 of a million dollars is allocated for Christmas cheer for Belizeans countrywide. In this same year crooked members of the administration made “a killing” for themselves with the $8 million bloated contract for Faber’s Rd.
At a press conference in Belize City the administration stated that the hefty $8 million price tag for Faber’s Road included a mile of proper concrete street ,the paving of Krooman Road, and building of a canal to drain water from the area to the sea. Construction work on Faber’s Rd concluded months ago. Surprise! Surprise! Due to shabby work, the street is so bumpy that mothers with at risk pregnancies or persons with heart conditions are warned that the terrible shaking as they travel on the road in a vehicle could compound their health issues.
Krooman Road is still in a terrible condition as not even a foot of it was paved, and no canal was built. The Faber’s Road project was highway robbery by some members of the administration. According to reputable local road contractors as well as a former Minister of Works, that project should have cost no more that $4 million dollars including the paving of Krooman Road and the construction of the canal. Nevertheless the entire $8 million for the Faber’s Road project is finished. Apologists for the Ministers have failed miserably in their efforts to convince the people that $8 million was spent to concrete a mile of Faber’s Road. That reminds Belizeans of this saying, “Captain Foot money gone, but nobody know we e gone.”
We don’t need a Belize in which our people are given “Pickens” for Christmas, after corrupt politicians and their cronies have made millions for themselves. This crowd in Belmopan are the masters of mismanagement and corruption. They have to go. We need a Belize in which the many resources of the country are used for the benefit of the people throughout the year not