The Commission of Inquiry after being sworn in earlier this year will have its first official sitting on Monday, February 15. The inquiry surrounds the sale of government assets in the months leading to the general elections last November. According to the commission they have summoned three persons for Monday’s session, namely, the former Prime Minister Dean Barrow; the Financial Secretary Joseph Waight, and the Head of the Vehicle Care Unit, Ruperto Vicente. The question is whether the former Prime Minister will show up.
Hon. John Briceno, Prime Minister of Belize: “I don’t think it’s a matter of political drama. He was the Minister of Finance and in many instances he was the one that had to approve the sell off of these assets pretty much at give away prices so he’s the one that approved it.”
Reporter: You think he will show ?
Hon. John Briceno, Prime Minister of Belize: “Well I hope he’ll show up. What is he afraid for if he didn’t do anything wrong then he should show up. As they say El que debe teme.”
As for the opposition, Senator Michael Peyrefitte told the media that it is nothing but political drama that is being sought.
Opposition Senator Michael Peyrefitte: “Well he has to show up. A commission of inquiry has summoned you to appear you have to appear. He will appear and I am sure that they will probably be sorry they asked him to appear. I think you all know that the Right Honorable Dean Barrow is more than capable of handling himself so we look forward to that dog and pony show because I can’t understand why a commission of inquiry would want to summon a former Prime Minister to explain something that you can easily get the records for from the Financial Secretary. If you want to find out what happened in a ministry the minister is not the person you summon, the minister is not the person that you ask there is a management team comprised of the minister, the CEO who is the accounting officer, the finance officer and the administrative officer. If you want to find out what happened in the Ministry of Finance the person you summon is the Financial Secretary heh as all the records but what the PUP wants to do is to create a distraction. They’re all about creating distractions at this point because they want to change the conversation. They want us to not talk about the people they’re firing, they want us to not talk about the more people they’re going to fire, salaries are going to be cut for government officers, they cannot figure out a way to grow the economy, they cannot provide for free education and none of the things that they said they would do they can’t do. They cannot do a simple thing as to raise the minimum wage to $5 per hour, none of that they can do so what do they do ? They have to create distraction. They have to create red herrings for us to forget about the fact that they are already doing a terrible job at governing this nation.”
The proceedings will be carried Live on the internet beginning at ten o’clock in the morning.