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Oct 6, 2015

PUP Says It Will Hold Massive Consultation on ICJ

Lisa Shoman

The referendum for Belizeans to decide on whether the issue of the unfounded Guatemalan claim should go before the International Court of Justice, in The Hague, for resolution continues at the forefront of public discourse.  The matter has been thrust, yet again, into the spotlight, following Foreign Minister Elrington’s recent address before the UN General Assembly.  The People’s United Party that initially supported taking the issue to the ICJ, says that once it forms the next Government of Belize, it will hold a series of nationwide consultations on the sensitive subject.

 

Lisa Shoman, Opposition Representative, Bipartisan Commission

“As presently formulated, it is a one question, straight up yes or no answer.  What we’re saying is we want as a government, in our first year in office to hold massive public consultations to have options formulated because this issue of yes or no to the ICJ is not the only thing.  Another option for instance would be to put the entire issue of the ICJ in a deep freeze, so to speak, and try to better relations with Guatemala.  There is no point with us having any trajectory towards the ICJ with a partner that neither respects us nor stops its aggression against us.  So that is another option and there are other options that have been put out there, for instance the asking for an advisory opinion from the UN.  So there are various options and we believe that Belizeans not only should be told about those options but should have the opportunity to formulate options of their own. How do we move ahead in the face of the fact that our government is not being completely transparent and clear to Belizeans?  That is the most important question.”

 

Reporter

“And how would you respond to that question?”

 

Lisa Shoman

“I would say that we can’t, until and unless we are clear about what we are doing.  This is why the PUP is saying that we can no longer put our trust or confidence in this UDP administration because of the reckless, highhanded, arrogant, non-transparent manner in which they’ve dealt with this.”

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