Thursday, March 7, 2019
Victory is in the quality of the competition, not just the final score. But, that is not what happened on Monday night after a brawl broke out at a game between two tertiary level institutions, namely Galen University and the University of Belize. The ATLIB football match was played at the Isidoro Beaton Stadium, Belmopan.
Information on what started the brawl is not forth coming but, a release sent out by University of Belize (U.B.) indicated “internally, we are investigating the incident and will collaborate with each other and with the ATLIB Sport authority in its investigation and disciplinary process. Both Universities will work together with ATLIB and with our students to ensure such violence does not escalate and reoccur. At this time, we can state irrevocably that the persons firing the guns are neither Galen or UB student nor employees of our institutions.”
It has been confirmed that the male person who fired several shot in the air was an off-duty police officer who was at the game. On Wednesday March 5, 2019 COMPOL Chester Williams told the media “I am disturbed by what I saw, not only from the officers who discharged the firearm, but also from the students who were apart of the game.”
The president of the PUP Youth Movement has written an article on the sad realization that violence has become infringed within our Belizean society but more importantly within our Belizean youth.
He started off by referring to the football game “showed how our government has failed us as citizens and more importantly the youth of our country. …A football game between universities should never lead to gun violence and should rather be a gateway out of violence and an escape to greener pastures” End Quote.
The Belize Youth Movement Release:
“Violence, rotting our youth!”
I write this article with a heavy heart as it is a sad realization that violence has become infringed within our Belizean society but more importantly within our Belizean youth. The quick disintegration that occurred at the football game between Belize’s two universities showed how our government has failed us as citizens and more importantly the youth of our country. As a previous Galen student myself I was appalled to see the behavior of both sides. For a fact, I know these are not the conducts adhered to by Galen University. By far the most alarming occurrence within the video was the inaction of the ones involved as the gunshots rang out. That single inaction denotes how guns and gun violence has been entrenched within our Belizean core. A football game between universities should never lead to gun violence and should rather be a gateway out of violence and an escape to greener pastures.
However, the actions demonstrated by these two schools are unacceptable, and inexcusable. I have all trust and faith that both institutions will deal accordingly with the culprits after their due diligence is done. However, that is not enough, our government has failed our youth from a very young age. When you see a government willing to only invest on infrastructure and bloated contracts and not on the human resources component of our society we are in for a rough ride. When you see nepotism rotting the halls of Belmopan and Minister’s children obtaining scholarships to study cosmetology and the youth in Lake I cannot get a high school scholarship, we know we have failed. That is the dire situation our youth of today face. Violence became a way of survival for many and even those that manage to get out of the situations, still resort to it whenever they feel the need arises.
As President of the BYM, and on behalf of the entire BYM executive we urge all youths of today to put down the guns, to love one and other and to help us grow and build a Belize that works for everyone. I also call on the government, to realize the problems of crime and violence and lack of opportunities for young people and to adhere to this. Get your priorities straight Mr. and Mrs. UDP and realize that the lives of the youth matter, we are the future but you must help mold us and give us the necessary tools to create a bright future and not one riddled in violence and senseless acts.