A document of cooperation between the Ombudsman Office of Belize and the Control Yuan Office in the Republic of China on Taiwan was signed this afternoon at the Belize Biltmore Plaza in Belize City. This cooperation agreement comes months after the initial discussions had begun between local stakeholders and the Taiwanese Ambassador to Belize, Benjamin Ho. Ombudsman, Lionel Arzu told us more about the cooperation honed between both countries as it pertains to this signing.
“In the beginning it was the Taiwan Embassy in Belize who were approached our office to request some arrangement for an agreement to be signed eventually and it was all in line with the human rights of both citizens, in Taiwan and the human rights issues of Belize and so after working along with Dr. Benjamin Ho from the Taiwan embassy we were able to materialize what ended up to be the cooperation agreement today. It was not easy because we had to be in communication with their embassy. The agreement basically is to exchange information as it relates to human rights issues in both countries and so we are aware that Taiwan is one of Belize’s best friends so to speak and when you have best friends you expect to benefit both ways. We benefit the Taiwanese benefit and for me I believe it is very important because then they as a country that has contributed a lot to our country I believe that from their expertise we will also be able to benefit from it.”
Arzu went on to speak on how the exchange of information will be carried out as it pertains to human rights cases and redress.
“We will have meetings at both levels, at high levels and just the medium level meetings and it’s just more working out a cooperating in terms of human rights, the expertise from both sides. What I look forward to is whatever information that we have that we need help with in terms of expert help as it relates to human rights issues Taiwan will be an assistant to us but maybe not necessarily to physically come here to fight a case but to give us some help in terms of logistics and framework and how you go about doing such things.”
Signing with the Ombudsman Arzu was Dr Po-YA Chang, the President of the Control Yuan of Republic of China, Taiwan. The Control Yuan is an independent watchdog body of the Government of the Republic of China, Taiwan and is made up of twenty nine members and the Taiwan’s Ministry of Audit. The Control Yuan has a similar role as the Ombudsman’s office as they are mandated to look into complaints of malfeasance or criminal acts committed by public servant or agencies.