Businessman’s Murder Sheds Light on Gun License Controversy
The killing of businessman, Ricardo Borja, has exacerbated the matter of gun licenses and allegations of under the table deals. Following his death, it was discovered that Borja had as many as nine gun licenses issued by the Belize Police Department. The matter of gun licenses and the issuances had already been under scrutiny, so much so, that the government had decided to commission a board to oversee the application and approval of licenses. The question today, however, is whether Borja was the only person with an excessive number of gun licenses? It is a question being pushed by the opposition after it came to light that Borja was able to obtain multiple gun licenses for handguns and high-powered rifles within seventeen months. According to Leader of the Opposition, Moses “Shyne” Barrow, that’s what the public needs to know.
Moses “Shyne” Barrow, Leader of the Opposition: “Obviously we know gun licenses were for sale. The commissioner admitted that. Channel 7 did an expose and so it is very troubling that one person was given all these gun license. You had people saying that $5,000, $3,000 you can buy a gun license. So we really need to understand what is happening, why the commissioner is issuing these gun license to one individual. For what purpose? How does that make society safer ?”
The UDP Chairman Micheal Peyrefitte, who is the former Minister of National Security, says the issue brings to light a much greater problem within the police department. He says that there needs to be an audit to ensure that other persons aren’t allowed to own that many guns.
Last month, 25-year-old, Ricardo Borja was killed outside his Belize City apartment for allegedly turning informant over a land scheme.