Pastor and fiery activist, Patrick Menzies has thrown his hat in the Belmopan constituency. It sounds good in theory but it turns out that Menzies’ hat throwing into the political arena is not so clear cut. Menzies is a Belizean American. He has been living in Belize since 2010 and because of his dual nationality he is not qualified to run in the elections unless he denounces his American citizenship. It seems simple, but for Menzies he wants to put up a fight and challenge the constitution in court.
Patrick Menzies, Political Aspirant: “Because I was born here the constitution says that I cannot, I am disqualified from being, from sitting in the House. I’m disqualified because Section 58,1A “No person shall be qualified to be elected as member of the House who is by virtue of his own act under any acknowledgment of allegiance, obedience or adherence to a foreign power or state.” Hold on that, by my own decision I became an American so that means I don’t qualify and I plan nomination day when I am rejected I plan on taking it to the Supreme Court and that is the only place for it to go and that’s why Belizeans abroad – remember I established the office for Belizeans abroad so I believe I need to finish the work I started in the government which the Prime Minister of Belize agrees it is ridiculous – Prime Minister Barrow and the Cabinet back then, ridiculous that Belizeans abroad have done so much and yet they can’t be in the legislature. So I plan on taking it to the Supreme Court. That’s what they did in Australia and it’s been done all over the world and since I have no doubt that it is unconstitutional, that the constitution gives me the right to be a dual citizen how can it therefore take away my right for me to be in government ? It doesn’t make any sense. The Prime Minister said that basically, I agree with the Prime Minister and I plan to take it to the Supreme Court.”
Patrick Menzies is the spokesperson for the Alliance of Church Leaders and the founder of Jasmine Alert. In this particular case his activism in the country plays no role. Despite this obstacle, however, Menzies seems unfettered by it all and proceeded in outlining a major component in his campaign which is to strengthen the education system in Belize.
Patrick Menzies, Political Aspirant: “I believe that the education system is completely gone. Can I tell you a quick story? I was born in Ladyville, went to King’s College on Maskall Road, went to the US with a high school diploma and when I went for my Associates Degree I took a test and I tested out of English, I tested out of Spanish. I graduated without taking it in junior college. I went for my Bachelors. They said you got to take another test. I took another test and I passed it. I went for my Masters, I took another test and I passed it. I have King’s College High School English and a Masters Degree in Business and a Masters in Information Systems Management with a 4.0 GPA. How ? We had a good system, we don’t anymore and it is not tailored off of what we need today. We need to tweak it and the other side is why we don’t need Patrick Faber again in Education he has taken us down the road of LGBT and so Belizeans must wake up. You gotta take these guys out if you don’t want your kids being taught something that you do not believe in. Simple as that.”
Menzies is looking to go up against John Saldivar, Oscar Mira and Anna Banner Guy in Belmopan.