The Ministry of National Security is promoting the case for taking Guatemala’s unfounded claim to the International Court of Justice. Admiral John Borland, Commandant of the Belize National Coast Guard, Deputy Commissioner of Police Chester Williams and Brigadier General Steven Ortega have been making the media rounds. Love News spoke to the Minister of Police, Elodio Aragon regarding the issue.
Jose Sanchez: “The sister agencies of the Ministry of National security. The Police Department and the BDF and the Belize coast Guard are going on a public campaign to support the government stance which is to say yes to the International Court of Justice. The critics of course are saying this is a very polarizing issue, it’s a national issue of course but they are saying that the uniform branches from the Ministry of National security should not have an opinion, should not be stating viewpoint on this issue, what is your opinion on that that coming under our Ministry?
Minister of Police: “ Well I will be frank with you if there is anybody who have the more expert opinion is that of National Security Ministry because these are the people who are dealing with the situation in terms of dealing with work on our borders, dealing with the situation on the ground, they are the people who know best and I will tell you I for one support us going to the ICJ and I do believe that the members of the Ministry of National Security in terms of the heads they have been out there . I think , I mean they understand the situation well more so than many for citizens right now and I do believe they have a responsibility to this nation for them to be heard in terms of where they stand because at the end of the day it is the Ministry of National security in terms of the Police, the Coast guard the BDF that will have to deal with this situation whether it be yes vote or no vote at the end of the day. It is the Ministry of National Security that has to be at the forefront of the challenges and issues that will come about as a result of whatever decision the citizens of this country make and I do believe they have a right and they should be looked upon seriously because that the end of the day these are the people who will be at the front line of all the problems that will come about whether a yes or no vote at the end of the day.
The Belize Progressive Party says it is alarmed at this unprecedented and irresponsible action. It says quote “This is most certainly an action, which contravenes the accepted professional norm; concerning public servants remaining neutral on matters that involve a political dynamic, particularly as it relates to the execution of their duties. This move by those representing the Ministry of National Security, the Belize Police Department, the Belize Defence Force and the Belize Coast Guard, under the guise of publicly presenting their personal positions, cannot be countenanced due to their official status as public servants. In effect, this is not only unprofessional, it is also extremely dangerous. Their approach intentionally sells Belizeans on the lie that we have no choice other than to go to the ICJ and sets the stage for those who do not agree with the bipartisan push, to be perceived and potentially singled out as enemies of the state; underscored with the public support of the top brass of nation’s Security Services. End of quote. The BPP says viable alternatives exist, yet the Government and its operatives refuse to acknowledge this fact by not allowing the voices of the ‘cons‘ to be presented as part of the campaign, by those with facts to substantiate this view.