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As early as September 2019 at the National Party Council, Party Leader then and now Prime Minister John Briceño said publicly that “We have to fix our laws to root out government corruption and, yes, anyone who has stolen the people’s money, from the highest office in government to the lowest, they will go to jail!”

Then as recent as in his first Prime Minister’s New Year’s 2021 Address, the Hon. John Briceño assured, “Public officers were required to use government equipment and fuel to build roads on private property and to clear massive ranches. The theft and corruption were widespread and unprecedented. This cannot, should not and will not be allowed to be forgotten. There will be investigations and, where warranted, criminal charges laid. Where appropriate, civil action for recovery will be brought before the courts. There will be no sacred cows.”

Prime Minister, John Briceño’s New Year’s message signalled that the only thing sacred was the wellbeing of the country – growth, development, and people. “There will be no sacred cows”. The PM was adamant that sacrifices in the year 2021 was necessary resulting from the United Democratic Party’s acts of corruption, thievery and criminality unleashed upon the Jewel and the citizenry. A situation compounded by the COVID-19 pandemic. However, in good conscience to the sacrifice needed from the populace Prime Minister Briceño made it clear that those who have soiled the country to ruination must be held to account.

A three-member Commission of Inquiry chaired by Senior Counsel E. Andrew Marshalleck with Marcello Blake for the Belize Chamber of Commerce and Industry and Luke Martinez for the Public Service Unions are responsible with enquiring into the “fire sale” of Government assets. The Commission is vested in the authority to summon and question those individuals who can assist in obtaining relevant evidence, including the former Prime Minister Dean Oliver Barrow. Henry Charles Usher Minister of the Public Service and Constitutional Reform alluded categorically the government assets are the people’s assets. Minister Usher proffered that the Commission is tasked to examine whether the pertinent procedures were followed in the seemingly obscene nature the Barrow/Faber regime of 2008-2020 dispensed with the country’s assets. Additionally, if Cabinet’s pronouncement is to retrieve the assets, that will be a likely occurrence.

Prime Minister Briceño in the New Year’s Message highlighted the Barrow/Faber skullduggery, the unscrupulous behaviour of the UDP and the many injustices inflicted upon the good people of Belize. Valuable lands were fleeced for a pittance, given away to cronies of the Red Hydra. The country and its people have been straight-jacketed to obscene contracts valued in the millions to privileged contractors who failed to make payments on the taxes and fees. Institutions like the Public Utilities Commission, led then by Barrow, Avery et al bought properties such as the Mirab building at the overvalued price tag, leaving millions in debt.

The whammy, the Karen Bevans contract with the Belize Tourism Board could well be the iceberg tip, the ugly display of a heartless UDP government pushing the country towards the financial cliff. Also, Public Officers were required to use the Government equipment and fuel to build roads on private properties and to clear massive land into ranches. Undeniably, the UDPs misfeasance, nonfeasance and malfeasance was grossly unprecedented.

The Commission of Inquiry and it’s members have an unprecedented task ahead. It is directly following the New Year’s Prime Ministerial pronouncement showing that his words are always of consequence. “Where appropriate, civil actions for recovery will be brought before the courts.”. Importantly, the PM, without mincing words, suggested that whilst Belizeans are asked to make sacrifices in ensuring the Jewel’s well-being, former UDP officials may in effect be making bail arrangements. This process has to be thoroughly fleshed out to give Belize a chance to work for everyone.

Hilly Bennett

Voice of the Common Man

Corozal Free Zone Opens

800plus Families Benefit

The PUP will not allow the Corozal Free Zone to go down like Pembroke Hall, the Corozal Sugar Cane Factory.  The UDP’s history in Corozal is to close down any Enterprise that will make Corozal flourish.

Papaya Industry, where are you?

The Free Zone or the CFZ at the Corozal border with Mexico was slammed shut without a care in the world by Pablo and Dean and Patrick et al. They will blame Covid but NO…Patrick Faber’s UDP systematically ignored the Corozal Free Zone for years before 2020.

In its planBelize PLANNING, the PUP is sworn in oath to open the Freezone and to reupholster it to be a part of an even more vibrant Corozal District.

Far from the corrupt, clueless, incompetent past 13 years, the PUP-led government set out post-election 2020 to deliberate on how to re-open the Freezone and to go much beyond what was there with the UDP in early 2020. Consultation with business owners, land owners, ‘past’ workers, Corozaleños, Mexican counterparts, and Cabinet was/is an integral part of the new norm in the Briceño administration. If there is not a clear window looking into this gargantuan Belizean initiative, then John Briceño’s humble manner will get one done in the spirit of utter transparency. If the initiative creates jobs or re-establishes jobs with better more progressive situation, then it is a part of the PUP’s and John Briceño’s vision. The initial reports of 800 jobs opened or reactivated is news Eight Hundred Families have longed to hear. There are yet tens of businesses left to open.

Don’t blame the UDP, they are too dumb to be blamed, just vote them out. They are all in line to beat put Pablo for the dumbest. Please don’t leave Barrow out of the picture…his father faked and talked his way into remaining Prime Minister but in essence Barrow is skilful at nothing. As for the sister, I am lost for words and I BET she will resign quicker than Patrick would hope to kick the son off the land between Tigris and Euphrates.

The current CFZ Chief Executive Officer, Mr. Neri Ramirez, will have it no other way but have safety of any and all persons who will traverse the Freezone. There is no negotiation of the antiCovid protocols that those moving in and out must abide by. This includes the basic temperature checks to be logged, sanitizing of the whole body, sanitizing of vehicles,  optimal mask wearing and the preparation of each business to be a safe environment for owners, freezone staff, business workers, and customers.

Faber Ignored Corozal

Of course, Faber will say, “Dont expect me to care what happened in the past.” Faber does not realize yet that he IS the past and that he was there to eat the Pibil tacos, in Longsworth’s Marion Jones, in the Caribbean Sea with our vehicle, Beside Simeon Coc’s 2 Million, Kicking out Mr. Good, Ramming Education Changes without Final Consultation, Anti-Women multiple altercations and the rest is left up to history.

Belizeans must remember that the Freezone is for foreigners to spend money at and bring in foreign exchange to the Belize. Additionally, the zone provides jobs so then this money get to circulate in Belize. People get to put food on their table. At this point, 800 families and counting will breathe a sigh of relief when the first pay check will come in, for many they cannot wait for the weekend.

We must wear our masks properly at all times.

We must wash our hands repeatedly.

We must get tested.

We must isolate and quarantine when advised by medical practitioners.

And, we are appealing to all to resist the temptation to gather in large numbers during the holidays.–Prime Minister John Briceño’s appeal is the same.

COVID Vaccinations

Strategic Planning of Jab Into Arms

The Prime Minister or the Minister of Health will be officially announcing the coming of the vaccinations. Which one? We are still waiting on that information. It has been reported that Belize has been in the list of countries that got sent a letter from PAHO informing us of our pending vaccine vials.

So now, we have a general date in which vaccinations will be seen in Belize—early March is being touted. Vaccinations plus recovered immunities need to reach to as close to 100 percent as possible.  Science says that a country is truly Covid-free when 70 percent or more are in the vaccinated and thus mostly immune.

With massive increases in testing, Belize is seeing and feeling more and more hopeful with each passing day. The numbers are back under 300 actives and they are going down fast. Let us say again, of course, number of infections and deaths will always be intolerable as long as it is greater than zero. The pain is equally jarring and saddening.

Panama and Costa Rica are already in getting one of the Covid vaccines into the arms of their elderly, frontline workers and other vulnerable persons. The world internet counter have risen to the task just as when we first started to follow infections. Now Belizeans can see that the world is getting the vaccines and we can start to feel a semblance of normalcy.

Khalid, Who’s Building on Belmopan’s Green Areas?

People in Belmopan and visitors are irked by the metal skeleton that they see smack in the middle of town on the green of Belmopan. The people of Belmopan revere their green zones. These grassy knolls and flats together with the winding sidewalks are what make Belmopan itself and give her the quiet character that become the subject of conversation of the Garden City and our Capital. Our Capital is supposed to be a pristine getaway from the hustle and bustle of the city.

It is literally the safe haven away from hurricanes that could feasibly wipe out the old capital with the sea wall protection and all. But while we hope that this devastation is staved off forever, the UDP has tried it’s best to corrupt what seemed incorruptible. The Mayor and Senator-to-be and liar about his chumminess with Saldivar and Dermen, was getting rid of the revered green spaces for 1000 dollars a lot. Really….where did the rest go? This is raping the coffers at its best. Not satisfied with the public fiasco of the selling of hilltop the lame duck Mayor is now getting exposed as being a fake real estate mogul. Worse yet! The social prices most likely went to campaign financiers who were happy to buy off these Prime cuts for baloney sandwich prices.

Now we see a skeleton just downtown that is an eye sore and being built where even God request for green grass to grow. There are no answers from the City Council and not from the Mayor. Is the Mayor’s Office still functioning?

So to add to the John Saldivar Avenue greens, and Green Areas everywhere they are negotiating the Harriot Topsey Park. Seems like the Mayor does not care for children spaces either.

Word to the wise and also to the Mayor… let not start signing Miller-like contracts nor Denny-like contracts nor Imer-like contracts.