Following yesterday’s press conference Prime Minister Dean Barrow addressed the comments made by the Leader of the opposition in his New Year’s message where he made allegations against the United Democratic Party as they relate to corruption.
Rt.Hon Dean Barrow, Prime Minister of Belize: I mi mean fu get into that too and to make the point of what the US Charge said about the American’s plan for Belize and drug fighting and how they’re getting a Belize official to be stationed as attached to their inter agency unit to deal with the tracking of these planes. You think the man will be collaborating, you think they will continue to embed DEA agents here if they had any sense that there was any slackening of will on the part of this government or worse that any official of this government was involved? Man, Briceno needs to tighten up. I mean all can’t be fair- maybe it’s fair in love and war but not in politics. You owe a duty to Belize not to tarnish it’s good name and when you think you say that and you’re hurting the UDP you’re not hurting the UDP you’re hurting Belize and you have not a basis for it and all the evidence points to the country.”
Imer Hernandez – he is the nephew of Gaspar Vega and has been in the news multiple times in relation to road works contracts and objections from the opposition and the private sector. His name came up again yesterday after the press brief with the Prime Minister. It had to do with the request by the Belize Chamber of Commerce and Industry for copies of the recent road contracts awarded and supporting documents. Prime Minister says he is surprised that the chamber still had not received the documents.
Rt.Hon Dean Barrow, Prime Minister of Belize: “Let’s talk about what I spoke to, what I responded to the Chamber of Commerce over. Their request for the contracts having to do – what the Leader of the Opposition was railing about in the House, what was it ? Caracol and Coastal ? I discussed the matter with the minister and we were clear those things are to be handed over, there is nothing to hide. I am shocked to hear that they have not been handed over and I will as soon as I leave from here check on that, I can’t believe it. By the way in the same vein I want to tell you that I have received a copy of a letter sent to Mr. Imer Hernandez by the IDB in respect to that audit that the Leader of the Opposition insisted be conducted suggesting that something was wrong, a letter which absolutely clears Imer Hernandez and says think no more of it, this matter is over and done with, you gone clear. So again this is something involving Imer and I will repeat what I said in the House- these contracts, funded by the external agencies are carefully scrutinized in so far as the bidding process – the whole tender process is concerned and in so far as the supervision of the works is concerned. You can’t try to say that the government is mixed up in any kind of favoritism and giving Imer and inside lane when you’re dealing with matters that ultimately are in the complete control of these external agencies. But I will check immediately because those documents should have gone a long time ago.”