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Villagers want to clear the border

Since April 15, reports of incursions by Guatemalans into Belize have increased. Two months ago, rangers for Friends for Conservation and Development (FCD) discovered pieces of land inside the Chiquibul being surveyed by Guatemalans. At that time it was explained that since the voting population in Guatemala voted ‘yes’ in its ICJ Referendum, rogue agents were scamming Guatemalans who live along the border by telling them that they can own a piece of land in Belize if they paid for it. It seems that villagers of Otoxha and Dolores in the Toledo District have noticed a similar occurrence. Pieces of land are being cleared along the border and the villagers want to stop it before the clearing becomes larger. They are proposing to clear part of the border. On Friday villager met with Leader for the Belize Territorial Volunteer Wil Maheia.

Villager: “They decided that they wanted to wait for a while and see the response from authorities then respond back to us whether the BDF, whether the police, whether the forestry will be coming along to help us so that we could clear the line. We also had you on the list, your team on the list. That would be the next step that we were going to make bu I believe it’s going to take a while because it’s not going to happen right now. The Alcalde association went to do that, they are doing it at his moment I believe. I also told them if we can meet along with Will Maheia, along with the Alcaldes whoever the Alcaldes want to come they are welcomed to join because it’s Belize and it’s ours and for nobody else, then we can clean the line and it makes it easier for us. I was going to ask you a question because I asked the same question to the Alcalde association, if they can put a pillar there.”

Reporter: Because there used to be pillars before.

Villager: “If they can put a pillar maybe like every half a mile then we know exactly where Belize is.”

Reporter: You think that the villagers would be willing to go out and help to clear the line?

Villager: “According to them.”

The villagers have asked the Toledo Alcalde Association to write to the Ministry of Defense to request BDF assistance.