Senator Shoman says changes in Guatemala could have impact on Belize

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Updated: August 26, 2015

Senator Lisa Shoman has been keeping a close eye on the chaos that is occurring in Guatemala and believes that Government officials should do the same. The latest coming out from Guatemala was that the country’s top court has approved a motion by the attorney general to impeach President Otto Perez Molina over allegations he led a corruption scheme dubbed as “La Linea”. According to online reports, the case is now in the hands of the congress, which will decide whether to strip the President of immunity from prosecution, a legal benefit given to some elected officials in Guatemala. According to the Guatemalan Attorney General’s Office and a U.N. investigating commission, Perez Molina and a group of close aides within his administration received bribes in exchange for lowering taxes for companies seeking to import products into Guatemala. But what does this have to do with Belize. Shoman explained how what happens in Guatemalan can affect Belize.

Lisa Shoman – PUP Senator

“Whoever the government of Belize is dealing with in Guatemala is essentially a lame duck government. They have a finite period they only have a few months more to go and so you don’t expect them to have either the political will necessarily or the political juice to be able to carry out mandates. The congress has even refused to allow the referendum to be held so the government went and broke that special agreement and signed thing and now it won’t even be used so what was that all about. This is why we have always taken a position that when it comes to electoral cycles you put this issue on the back burner unless there is an emergency. Obviously if there is an emergency you can’t simply do nothing but you have to kind of back off and wait for there to be a new government to come in and it takes time and people get impatient but you can’t be impatient about this, this is our future, this is our stake. So whatever happens in Guatemala electorally will affect what happens with Belize because each and every candidate has a different candidate has a different position towards Belize and the question of the Guatemalan claim over Belize and I think we have to be very careful about how we are watching that, we have to keep our eye on it because hourly it is changing.”

In a message broadcast Sunday on Guatemalan national TV and radio, the President denied the charges and suggested he’s the target of a plot by his political enemies aided by foreign interests. Yesterday, Guatemalan’s Former Minister of Foreign Affairs and Ambassador to the UN, Fernando Carrera, resigned and it is expected that Guatemala’s current Foreign Affairs Minister, Fernando Carrera, will follow suit.