Commentary: Yet another example of Belize's policy of accommodating Guatemala at any cost!

Well Belizeans and true friends of Belize, if this doesn’t beat all! The GOB signaled that it will facilitate the entry of individuals from Guatemala, even if their passport intentionally does not provide a clear distinction between our sovereign territory and that of Guatemala.

Paco Smith staunchly advocates the emergence of civil society to serve as a proactive force toward positive change within the policy development arena. Among his many involvements, he is a co-founder of the group Belizean Patriots against the ICJ.

Amid the nonsensical call for Belizeans to place our territorial integrity at the mercy of the jurisprudence of the justices at the ICJ, coupled with this most recent development, I must admit that I have lost whatever minute amount of respect that I might have retained for those in Cabinet.

As the old Belizean adage states, “…pick sense from di nonsense!” Correct me if I am wrong, but did the Minister of Immigration say, “We cannot refuse people entry into the country…”? When last I checked, the Immigration Department is vested with the authority and wherewithal to do precisely that.

Of course, it must be as a result of matters or circumstances that are deemed to be in contravention to our laws and statues. So therefore, I pose the question ‘When has Cabinet ever been hesitant to make decisions, to accommodate what they deem as fit?’

For those with a short memory, you need not go as far back as a few days and recall the controversial Cabinet decision concerning the exportation of rosewood. Does that ring at bell? Admittedly, this is yet another example of the disingenuous manner of “leadership” that is guiding this nation.

The bottom line is that there is no skirting around it. Once Guatemala issues passports that blatantly disrespect our nation’s sovereign status, by way of a Cabinet decision, it can be mandated that entry shall not be afforded those who present such an offensive and provocative document, at any point of entry to Belize. I don’t want to hear anything about providing an “entry permit”, for which one will be made to pay. To me, that signals that the Government of Guatemala can disrespect our nation at all levels and as long as you can pay, all is well? The notion expressed reeks of a piss-poor attitude of accommodation… at any COST. (Note the emphasis on COST).

My people, is this what Belize has been relegated to? We have a government which obviously is unwilling to stand up for Belize and therefore would venture to create a mechanism through which to accommodate citizens of a nation that holds Belize in utter contempt… and which makes no bones about it! I am sorry, but realistically speaking, there comes a time when one must stand up for something and in this instance, it means standing up for this nation. Indeed, there will be individuals who may be caught-up in the mix, but there is also an old Creole proverb which posits, “suhtime the gud haffu suffa fu the bad”.

The blind supporters of anything that their political directors instruct them to do will say that under international statues we cannot deny entry to legitimate visitors. I find that unacceptable, for given the internationally recognised status of Belize, under the UN Charter, the production of such passports is outright wrong. It is simply demonstrative of a government whose contempt for Belize and international laws, coupled with its intransigence, knows no bounds! Sadly enough, from all appearances, the Guatemalans have willing collaborators on this side of the border!

Belizeans and true friends of Belize, how many examples do you need to signal that our nation suffers from a distinct dearth of: competent, logical and purposeful leadership… across the board? It has been evidenced by the ill-advised signing of the Compromis in 2008, which inevitably opened the door for Guatemala to embark on an ever-increasing campaign of exploiting the GOB’s folly. It is fundamentally due to the fact that our border was relegated to including a so-called “adjacency zone”, that Guatemala is emboldened to take this provocative course or action. Meanwhile, our “so-called leaders” are busy trying to see how they can accommodate the situation.

Let’s be real. Is it not time for Belizeans to provide a definitive expression of their discontent with the lacklustre and purely wretched manner of “leadership” to which we have subjected ourselves?

Think about it… and for goodness sake, do something!

Belize, Sovereign and Free – NO ICJ!

Belizeans and true friends of Belize,

Kindly give this some thought…




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