Belize City Council Aims to Enhance Independence Day Logistics
The Belize City Council hopes to improve the logistics of the annual celebration activities to enhance residents’ experiences. Each year, numerous activities are held in the month of September leading up to the anniversary of Belize’s independence. The council works along with other agencies to coordinate the city’s patriotic festivities and plays a key role in managing traffic. Belize City Mayor Bernard Wagner says it takes a collective effort to ensure the events are well planned.
Bernard Wagner, Mayor of Belize City: “Yes, you know the month of September we have gotten pretty used to it. That it comes with a lot of ceremonial activities, a lot of festivals, a lot of parades and so as a city you have to be able to ensure that you collaborate with the other agencies. You have to be able to collaborate with the law enforcement, the government of the day, the residents of the city and other social partners because you can’t do this job in respect to facilitating all these activities on your own. You have to be able to ensure collaboration occurs. Well you know this weekend another big activity in the city is the expo, right, and that area in the Princess Margaret Drive area is always a bottlenecked get created, the amount of vehicles we have in the city, that’s why we need to really enhance and have our transport system become more efficient because if that becomes more efficient then people will leave their vehicles at home and use the national or the local transport. So we continue to put our foot on the ground in terms of our traffic officers, special constables. We work very closely with the police in trying to navigate and ensure that we still comply with the law. Even though these activities occur, we still have to comply with the law, but we are a bit more lenient during those times.”
While September is regarded as a month to showcase patriotism, Wagner says each year the council encounters large amounts of garbage on the city streets. He called on people to be responsible when celebrating and not litter.
Bernard Wagner, Mayor of Belize City: “Civic pride, civic pride, civic pride. That’s all we preach every day. We as residents always speak so good about loving our country but how can you love your country when you finish drink a coke you throw the bottle on the ground, when you finish drink an ideal you throw it on the ground. How can you speak about loving your country when all you do is litter your country? We have to take what’s deep introspective look at ourselves as residents of the city and not because we have the sanitation team to clean up the city that means you will throw all your garbage in the city man. Please practice some civic pride. I always tell our adults in this country that our kids are watching us each and every day and if they see their parents throwing the garbage on the streets they will in the future throw it in the streets.”