Villagers Protest Against Legal Challenge by Maya Leaders Alliance, Minister Comments

Villagers Protest Against Legal Challenge by Maya Leaders Alliance, Minister Comments

Last week, residents of Indian Creek Village took to the steps of the National Assembly to protest a legal challenge brought against the government by the Maya Leaders Alliance (MLA) and Toledo Alcaldes Association (TAA). The groups, represented by Senior Counsel Godfrey Smith, filed an injunction at the High Court over the community’s Alcalde and Deputy Alcalde being removed by the Office of the Attorney General. The claim centers on the decision made in January, which the MLA alleges was supported by only a few village councilors. However, dozens of villagers took to Belmopan to oppose that claim and called on the associations to desist from their efforts to have the decision overturned. Today, we asked the Minister of Indigenous People’s Affairs about the situation and whether she has instructed her ministry to contact the villagers. 

Dolores Balderamos Garcia, Minister of Human Development:  “It is before the court but the villagers of Indian Creek have every right to get out their message. I guess what they are saying is that the “MLA narrative” is not the only one. But I do wish to say, again I can’t say too much the matter is before the court but there are some very fundamental issues of governance that arise in this case. And for my part having the portfolio and the responsibility for indigenous people’s affairs again we encourage everybody to get their message out but on the part of the government, and I have said this and I repeat it we have one Belize. We cannot have a country within a country where it comes to governance. And the laws of Belize have to signal that once you are in this country there is one set of laws.”

The community also denies that the MLA and TAA held consultations in their community and says that only a handful of villagers support the groups.

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