Elected Area Representative for Orange Walk South and the Opposition’s Deputy Party Leader for the northern region, Jose Abelardo Mai is in the hot seat tonight. Mai knocked down a woman on Friday in Trial Farm Village, Orange Walk District. The incident happened just after eight o’clock in the night when Mai was heading to Orange Walk Town in his 4-door Toyota Hilux pickup truck. Arana was reportedly attempting to cross the highway that runs along San Martin Gas Station when she was knocked down. Arana is the mother of well known cyclist, Nissan Arana, who spoke to us about the incident.
NISSAN ARANA: Well honestly I was shocked because I would never expect that to happen to my mother. She is the one that is always there for us.
Reporter: How did you get to know?
NISSAN ARANA: “Well my cousin called me and I jumped up and went to see what happened. I wasn’t right there so I couldn’t tell you what exactly happened but they said that they were crossing the street. I think that as you as the driver should know to slow down in villages and the spot where she got knocked down they had removed the speed bumps that were there when they fixed the road and just Thursday night they knocked down another person on the same stretch of road. You can’t compare person with a vehicle.”
Reporter: So you are saying that Mr.Mai, you believe that he was speeding on that stretch of highway?
NISSAN ARANA: “I think that was what he was doing.”
Reporter: Has anyone of the Belize Police Department spoken to any member of the family.
NISSAN ARANA: “So far I don’t think so.”
Reporter: What about eye witnesses? Do you believe that anybody saw what happened ?
NISSAN ARANA: “Right now I think I have a couple of friends who saw what happened. I can’t tell you for sure yet until I go to talk to them.”
Reporter: Where was she heading to and what was she doing?
NISSAN ARANA: “She was going from Trial Farm to the town where she lives at my house. She was going to catch the taxi.”
Reporter: She was walking alone?
NISSAN ARANA: “She and her husband were walking together. She was walking about three feet behind him catching the taxi. When he looked behind him she had already gotten knocked down.”
Reporter: Did your dad say whether she appeared intoxicated or anything?
NISSAN ARANA: “He said that he was under alcohol or stuff but I don’t know.”
According to Arana, Mai has not spoken to the family.
NISSAN ARANA: “Well up to now we haven’t spoken to him so we are just waiting. My mom is the most important for us at this moment we are not pushing it yet so far, we are trying to deal with the matter with my mom first.Reporter: When it comes to the actual medical expenses that you will have to pay do you expect that he would have to foot that bill?Voice 1: I just hope so because he is the reason she is in this condition, regardless if she was crossing the road but I think he should put his part too.”
Arana said his mother is in a stable condition and the family is praying for the best.
NISSAN ARANA: “Up to today and Friday she hasn’t spoken at all and she is in a medically induced coma until swelling on her brain eases for now. She is stable right now but she is still sleeping to ease off the swelling from her brain.Reporter: What other injuries did she receive?Voice 1: She has a punctured lung, a fractured rib and a lot of scrapes. I just pray that she recovers because I don’t just want my mom to go like that and so far they are saying that she is improving a lot but until the CATSCAN results we will know how she will recover.”
Friday night’s accident was the second of the week in that location as the night before, forty year old Hilberto Cowo was the victim of a fatal road traffic accident. Residents we spoke with said one of the contributing factors is that the speed bump that was at the location was removed when the highway was being upgraded and it has not been replaced.