Belize Defence Force Addresses Delay in Monetary Payment for Late Lance Corporal’s Family
The Belize Defence Force is asking the family of the late Lance Corporal Roxannie Goff to bear with them as they sort out some issues with her paperwork. Roxannie Goff died in a car crash in August of 2022 leaving two of her three children with her parents. The BDF was to make a “death in harness” monetary payment to Goff’s family; however, her father Evan Goff says that has not been done. Today, BDF Chief of Staff Ricardo Leal, said that the issue with the paperwork has been identified and the force is working diligently to resolve the matter. He was, however, unable to provide a definitive timeline for disbursement.
Ricardo Leal, Chief of Staff, Belize Defence Force: “We want to express our sincere apologies to the late Lance Corporal Goff’s family for the delay and untimely communications. It is not our intent to frustrate and stall the disbursement process which in my point of view is long overdue. The compiled documents that were sent late 2022 from the force headquarters to the Ministry of National Defence and Border Security all documents are subject to review at all stages. In this case the documents are the death in harness, the years of service, the benevolent* fund compensation letter and of course the next of kin. What we have gathered so far is that the documents were received by the office of the Accountant General but were put on hold when it was found out some of the files were incomplete. The documents would be returned to the respective offices where force headquarters will work expeditiously to get the matter resolved at the very earliest time but we’re asking for a little bit more patience because these processes do take time. The family however can contact the force adjutant at any time for an update. It is not our intent to negate anybody but what it is that sometimes especially when we have family members dealing with these issues especially like in the case with Lance Corporal Goff is that she has a next of kin but the next of kin had asked us to delete him from all matters that we’re dealing at the moment and pass it onto one of the family members. And so we were communicating with him but since then we are – what we are able to say is that we were in communications with the said person. So it’s not like we’re not communicating but probably we might be communicating with the wrong person but the matter has been resolved actually.”
Roxannie Goff had served in the BDF for 18 years and was attached to various units including the air-wing. She passed away in August 2022 in a traffic incident on the George Price Highway. Ironically, she was returning home from the funeral of a military colleague.