Patrick Rogers of the VIP went on to state that the Government should have taken the compromis signed between Belize and Guatemala to the Senate for ratification.
“The compromiS needed to be brought to the Senate for ratification because in the laws of Belize the senate has certain powers and functions, they say it’s a rubber stamp and everything else but fine, they still have a function and that function is where it says at 61 A 2 “the power and functions of the senate referred to in section 1 are as follows, A authorizing the ratification including adhesion or accession of any treaty by the government of Belize including any treaty for the settlement for the territorial dispute between Belize and the Republic of Guatemala.” So clearly the constitution is calling for this compromi that is an executive decision is not binding on the country until the senate ratifies it. In other countries it would have had to go to both houses of the national assembly, in Belize it’s just the senate so we said fine but do the right thing and take it to the senate. We’ve seen Guatemala already take this thing to their congress once and they are ready to take the amendments that the executive signed onto, I think if they don’t get it in before the 26th of this month they won’t be able to have their referendum in the second run off of their presidential elections which is slated for October. So let’s not get this thing twisted, the compromi document calls for ratification. At section 6 it says ” this special agreement shall enter into force upon the exchange of instruments of ratification and remain in force until and unless terminated by agreements of the parties.” So article six within the same compromi says that the compromi does not become binding until both executives go to their national assembly whichever branch, which in Belize’s case it’s the senate, to have that document ratified before the referendum. The referendum is not the ratification that is what Belizeans don’t understand. The referendum is not the ratification that is referred to in article six of this compromi document. So we go to the senate before a month to the referendum plea so that we can bring up the discussion. However they know if it reaches the senate the back and forth will go on in that senate and people will realize that Belize’s case is not as air tight as we tend to think it is when you go around and listen to the Ministry of Foreign affairs presentations.”