Ambassador Nisbet Recounts Eric Chang’s Desperation for Belizean Visa

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Updated: May 31, 2017

Before Alvarine Burgess gave an attention grabbing testimony, the former Belize Ambassador to Taiwan, Cherie Nisbet appeared before the committee. At the time when former UDP Belize City Deputy Mayor, Eric Chang, attempted to visit South Korean Wong Hong Kim, she was contacted by Chang who was urgently requesting a visa for two South Korean Nationals. The former ambassador emailed her superiors in Belize about Chang’s persistent request. In her email she wrote:  “Eric called me in a panic asking me if I could urgently issue a visa to two S. Korean nationals who NEED to go to Belize the next day. I asked Eric what was the emergency, as I needed to know what was the emergency before I could issue a visa, as well as I needed all documentation filled out and approved.  Eric could not give me the reason for the emergency and told me that he may have had to call a “minister” in Belize to issue visas upon arrival. I told him, if he feels he can do that, then perhaps they would issue a visa upon arrival, but before I issue an urgent visa to anyone, I need a reason and all document completed.  He told me ok, thank you.” End of quote. Chang called her several other times during that weekend persistently trying to get a Belizean visa for a South Korean national. According to the report, Alejandro Young, Charge d’ Affairs of Honduras brought the original Passport issued to Wong Hong Kim and the original nationality certificate along with a copy of a petition  to the Belize Embassy in Taiwan to Nisbet. The report says that Young asked that a letter be written to validate the Passport and nationality. According to the auditor general, this was so that Kim could be issued a Taiwan visa in the Belize Passport in order for him to be released from detention.

In his testimony, Chang said he attempted to visit Wong Hong Kim because he was told Kim wanted to invest in Belize.