Yesterday we told of the Government of Belize’s release in which it stated its support for the Senate Inquiry. It is a turn in from their original position for a joint select committee; one that Senator Godwin Hulse had justified in the last Senate Sitting. Today, we asked him to weigh in on Government’s changed position to which he says that there was nothing wrong with the joint select committee.
“There is absolutely nothing wrong with that, the standing orders provides for that. I think the senate standing order is #71 so let there be no doubt that there is legal backing for a joint select committee. However there is public outcry I guess based on the fact that they don’t fully understand and the churches and everyone so fine the issue really isn’t whether it was a senate or a house you know, it is whether the people of Belize will have an opportunity to hear all the issues properly ventilated publicly without obstruction and that is the aim and that is what I support. So senate fine, house fine but the public will have an opportunity to hear all the matters be ventilated properly and that is the issue.”
Senator Hulse also spoke on whether he feels the inquiry would prove fruitful considering that he had previously pointed out that the process was not properly adhered to as it relates to the Auditor General’s report.
“I wouldn’t say it couldn’t make the senate inquiry not fruitful because you have to understand, and I have great experience with this, nothing came out of the senate inquiry that I did; absolutely nothing. At the same time there was a parallel commission of inquiry on the DFC which was back in court and the court ruled no to allow the report to even be publicly distributed so it was sealed. So that something will come out is another matter but there are lots of parameters to this. Again something I hope to address tomorrow, you have to understand that the penalties for infractions during that period of time is very low, it was a maximum of one year in jail and that was at the discretion of the magistrate and a maximum of $500. So whatever infraction there is that is all that could have come out. Today those infractions took place between 2014 and now it is $50,000 fine and 15 years in jail that is the kind of change that I introduced in the legislation when I recommended the legislation and it went into the National Assembly. Whether in fact justice is served is a subjective question because after the public hears then we can follow up on what should happen to persons who have done wrong and clearly there are lots of persons who have done wrong and so the public then will have an opportunity to hear and of course the legal people will have an opportunity to act.”
Senator Godwin Hulse will be appearing on The Morning Show tomorrow at seven o’clock on Love Television and Love FM.