This morning, a compliance hearing was held before the Caribbean Court of Justice. The hearing follows Government’s announcement that it had approved the Free Prior Informed Consent Protocol (F-PIC), designed to guide consultations with Maya communities. The protcool, according to Government, is part of its commitment to implement the CCJ consent order of 2015, which recognizes land rights and tenure for Maya people. Back in April, the Maya Leaders’ Alliance accused the government of ambushing the Maya people after the announcement. In the continuation of this matter, attorney for the MLA and the Toledo Alcaldes Association (TAA), Leslie Mendez made an opening statement before Justices Wit, Rajnauth-Lee and Anderson in which she called the current state of affairs chaotic.
However, the underlying theme throughout the first opening statements made by lawyers for both the Attorney General’s ministry and the Maya leaders is an issue of trust. Lead attorney for the Government, E. Andrew Marshalleck, in his short initial intervention, called for redoubling and refocusing efforts to rebuild the trust that’s currently lacking.