The Department of Environment (DOE) has retracted the permit given for the construction of a gas station on South Ring Road in Belmopan. The gas station set to be constructed in front of Our Lady of Guadalupe Primary School. Residents became concerned as many felt that this would be a recipe for frequent car accidents. When we spoke to CEO in DOE, Perceival Cho, last week, he explained that the request was declined in October 2018 because of its location. Despite this, their records show that it was approved in 2019. Fast forward today and that issue was reviewed and the permit was taken away. Our newsroom got an update from CEO Cho late this evening.
Percival Cho, CEO, Ministry of Environment: “Last week I managed to again I had a chance to independently look at the situation by reviewing the file and in that scenario DOE had initially not granted clearance for that operation and then a few months later went ahead and gave clearance. So there was a discussion around that and on advice of legal counsel a letter was prepared to retract or correct the error that was made and to retract the clearance. I have seen a draft of the letter today and so that should be going out anytime now. The initial determination for the department as seem om the file is that the development cannot proceed based on the fact that it is adjacent to a school and a church. Unless that that that situation changes and it has not, the school and the church is still there and will continue to still remain adjacent to that proposed area, then the permission can cannot be granted now or in the future because it’s against the guidelines and the DOE established for such service stations within communities.”
The gas station was being done by businessman, Ernesto Franco.