A portion of reserve land in the Caribbean Shores division was sold to a private company, Tek Multi-Service Limited, and is now creating friction among residents. The sale was made in June 2020 and includes 66-feet of reserve land that was gazetted in 2007 as national reserve. The contention over the land, situated near the Dolphin Park, began last week after a boat launch was developed on that piece of land for public use. Shortly after, the private owners proceeded to block the area. Area Representative for Caribbean Shores, Kareem Musa, spoke on the issue this morning.
Hon. Kareem Musa, Minister of Home Affairs and New Growth Industries: “Much to my shock and awe after we graded the boat launch last week I was notified that this particular area of the reserve had been issued, a title over this reserve had been issued by the past administration on the tail end of their administration we’re talking June of 2020 on their way out and it is not as though they were not aware that this is a protected area because it is gazetted and in order for you to de-reserve and area that is protected such as this one you need to also gazette the fact that you’re de-reserving it and that was never done. And so what we have here today the concerned residents have come out, they have asked for an audience with me because this has to be overturned one way or another and I’m talking in the very least short term this must be removed immediately. And so the private land owner who has this, and I’m told it is a company Teck Multiservice Limited, that company Teck needs to take this down is what they need to do because this is an easement that has been enjoyed by the residents of this community for so many years.”
Interestingly, Barrow and Williams Law firm issued a letter on Friday, February 19 condemning the damages and the destruction to the mangroves in the area. The law firm wrote in the capacity of the West Landivar Citizens Action Committee. The committee is demanding that the private developers cease and desist the unlawful activities taking place on the National Public Reserve. One of the residents, James Shepherd, says that he along with a number of fishermen and residents are being affected by the recent developments.
James Shepherd, Resident: “I met this like this so I keep using it and everyday I go out to fish – I don’t sell fish it’s just for pleasure.”
Reporter: So what are you doing now ?
James Shepherd, Resident: “I have my work that I do.”
Reporter: So right now you can’t go out.
James Shepherd, Resident: “I can’t go fishing right now because of them and their crazy selves put this up here.”
Reporter: And you would have been going out when ?
James Shepherd, Resident: “Maybe this morning because I’m on two days off.”
Reporter: Relatively how many other fishers use this area ?
James Shepherd, Resident: “Many people use this area not only us. Mr.Evans use it, I use it, people come from south side to use it.”
Documents sent into our newsroom show that the land was sold in June 2020 for two thousand dollars to TEK Multi-Service Limited. The company reportedly dabbles in real estate and is owned by a Belize City couple. Love News is following this story.