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Sep 30, 2014

Belizeans Gather Near Western Border in Protest of Senseless Murder

Tourism Police Special Constable Danny Conorquie was killed last week Thursday, murdered by bandits who then fled over the Guatemalan border. The outcry has been tremendous…the outrage at the senseless, tragic invasion and execution boiling over in every quarter except perhaps the most important – the halls of government. Conorquie was buried with full police honours on Sunday, but the repercussions of his death continue to build momentum. This morning, Belizeans came together in his name and protested at the Western Border – a message to Guatemala, and a closer home to our policy-makers in office. Our News Five team was there and Mike Rudon has the story.

 

Mike Rudon, Reporting

They gathered at nine this morning at the Macal River Park in San Ignacio. There weren’t many – just representatives of various groups, political and otherwise, including the territorial volunteers, the Belize People’s Front, the People’s National Party, the Vision Inspired by the People, BGYEA, the Belize Unity Alliance and other politicians and patriots. The reason behind the gathering is not a complicated one.

 

Bobby Lopez

Bobby Lopez, PR Officer, Vision Inspired by the People

“To raise the awareness of a situation that has been overlooked for too long, and unfortunately the death of our own had to occur – an execution really, and even that has gotten very cold response, if I may use that word, from our authorities, and so the VIP could not have stayed out of this.”

 

Nancy Marin

Nancy Marin, President, Belize People’s Front

“We are asking for justice for Danny. He is the first lawman killed in the line of duty by Guatemalans. We have no doubt about that. The family needs to be respected. They need to be compensated. We need to give at least equal treatment, if not better than they did to Guatemala. And the second reason is that we need a stronger foreign policy. We need to protect our borders, and those are the two reasons we are here today.”

 

Nigel Petillo, President, BGYEA

“One of our armed forces…one of the members of our armed forces has been killed, and we have every reason to believe da wah Guatemalan, but yet we wah hide behind that. So I am here as a concerned citizen. I deh yah fu support the situation, and I am calling on all Belizeans to be here as well.”

 

With flags waving proudly, the group then made its way by motorcade along the George Price Highway towards Benque Viejo del Carmen and the Western Border. It made for an impressive sight, as led by Police escort, proud Belizeans took the time to join in a united cause. Young Danny Conorquie was not present, but his spirit was the driving force behind the movement today. Marching on the border point with resolve, these few patriots sang a song infused with new meaning today.

 

As we told you earlier, the motive behind the march is simple. And so is the message. These courageous few want to see change. Not in government, because the agenda today was not political – but a change in policy where Guatemala and our border are concerned.

 

Nigel Petillo

Nigel Petillo

“I want we go back to the old days when we had patriots, not just politicians. We want people who wah listen. Long time we deh talk bout this. Wil Maheia deh talk bout this with the territorial volunteers long time…he deh watch the border. These things have been happening. What we want da the right ears to listen.”

 

Orlando de la Fuente, Territorial Volunteers, OW Branch

“I woulda wah see the government change the policy from one of appeasement to one of assertion, where we actually claim our border and where we don’t turn a blind eye and try to accommodate the Guatemalans so much. I think steadily our position has eroded and Guatemala has strengthened their claim against Belize.”

 

Reporter

Orlando de la Fuente

“Could you give me your gut reaction to the comments by the Foreign Minister?”

 

Orlando de la Fuente

“It’s pathetic bwoy. It’s sad, it’s sad. Every time that man is on the news it just makes me sad.”

 

Charles Leslie

Charles Leslie, Belize Unity Alliance

“I want the government to take the necessary steps to ensure that this never happens again…ever. and we also need to make sure that we tighten up our participation with the Guatemalan officials so that they also can do something about this incursion into Belize so that we can mitigate, alleviate and hopefully eliminate any more of this happening. Because Mr. Conorquie is dead! He was murdered by Guatemalan invaders into Belize and Belizean soil. We cannot do anything to bring back his life and his family will suffer this tragedy for a long time to come.”

 

Audrey Matura-Shepherd, Activist

Audrey Matura-Shepherd

“I think that we need to make a stand and let our government know that we know that it was a Guatemalan who killed Danny. We know that you all are not looking after our border. You have turned the BDF on us. We are asking you to put them back on our border and turn them westwards…and also because we need to stand in solidarity with the family of Danny Conorquie and the many other law-enforcement officers who have had to be working these areas across the border.”

 

The man who brought these people together today could not be here. But his family was. They are still grieving for this young hero killed in the line of duty, buried just two days ago. But there are here because this is where they had to be.

 

Jean Conorquie

Jean Conorquie, Mother of Danny Conorquie

“I felt a relief when I saw the funeral that Danny got, because I didn’t know Danny had so many friends. Even the high man in his job talk good about Danny. That’s why it hurts me as a ma because every morning Danny get up for work he always tell me ma I wah see you later. That day he never came home. I want to say thinks to everybody who supported Danny. And with all this I feel much better even though I’m crying because I miss Danny.”

 

Jennifer Conorquie

Jennifer Conorquie, Aunt of Danny Conorquie

“This is not political. We just wanted to get justice for my nephew. We want everything to come to a closure. We buried him already, but we just want it to end so we can grieve as a family. We felt the love out here so we said we are not going to stay home, we need to come out here. No matter what happens, we will be out here today.”

 

The group assembled peacefully and disbanded peacefully at one this afternoon – message sent. Though only time will tell if it was received. Mike Rudon for News Five.

 

We note that protestors were not allowed access to the adjacency zone immediately across from the Belize border. 

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Viewers please note: This Internet newscast is a verbatim transcript of our evening television newscast. Where speakers use Kriol, we attempt to faithfully reproduce the quotes using a standard spelling system.

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1 Response for “Belizeans Gather Near Western Border in Protest of Senseless Murder”

  1. Rod says:

    The only thing unu never do tha March to this pm house unu need fu March to this pm house drag him out of his bed and lock him up for being a traitor and a coward then lock up all his cowardly thiefing ministers.

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