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Feb 16, 2017

Senior Officer Gives Tips to Fix Immigration

George Reynolds

George Reynolds was less circumspect than his former colleague Teresita Castellanos on the issue of a culture of corruption in the Department. He said that as far as his work was concerned he did it and there were no issues. But he does agree that the Department needs specific guidelines and that the higher-ups cannot be afraid to get tough with those who are unwilling to follow the rules.

 

Eamon Courtenay, P.U.P. Senator

“You heard Miss Castellanos this morning?”

 

George Reynolds, Former Port Commander, Immigration Services (Belmopan)

“Yes I did.”

 

Eamon Courtenay

“You heard her specifically describe the culture in the Department from top to bottom?”

 

George Reynolds

“That’s a matter of her opinion, yes.”

 

Eamon Courtenay

“I appreciate that; I was just asking if you heard it.”

 

George Reynolds

“I heard it, yes.”

 

Eamon Courtenay

“Now I would like to give you an opportunity to comment on her description.”

 

George Reynolds

“I don’t really like to comment on people’s opinions.”

 

Aldo Salazar, Chair, Senate Special Select Committee

“Do you share the same opinion?”

 

George Reynolds

“No, I don’t.”

 

Aldo Salazar

“What would you like to say, what was your experience?”

 

George Reynolds

“I do my work as is placed before me; whatever comes and has what it needs, it goes…I do my work. That’s all I can say at the Immigration Department. Where is there uniformity? In the Treasury Department, you go to one Treasury, they do thing one way, you go to another one, they do things another way; there is no uniformity in the complete Government Department – I don’t know, unless we can do it; it’s something that needs to be changed, yes, but there is not uniformity in any Department as I see it; so that’s one change that needs to happen – put things down in writing, in black and white, so that things we can adhere to and there should be penalties for not adhering to them; if those are not there, then we will be having these things over and over, because you are giving people holes to go over and around situations. So if you clog the holes and put things in black and white, then we will be able to adhere to stuff and then we’ll not be coming here to do this and waste Government funds going into all these stuff, and we don’t have something that actually says, Minister you can’t do this, and if you do this this will happen to you. That will not stop, they will continue, if they continue recommend they will recommend this – that is what they do for their constituents; they recommend stuff. So I get from this we should put stuff in writing for uniformity so that when I walk into an office in P.G., in Corozal, if I walk in there the same thing I give you in P.G., you will accept from me in Corozal. And you won’t tell me and got me running around and run around on things, because I see many people on run-around unnecessary, with my same department, unnecessary run-arounds, but there’s nothing there to actually guide. We were supposed to be doing manuals for each process but something just stopped the process. We were attending meetings for manuals for each process, but we haven’t been contacted for any more meetings for a while now.”

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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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