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Feb 21, 2017

Godwin: I Did Not Block David Nanes Investigation

On Monday night, we aired several parts of an extended interview with Minister of Immigration Godwin Hulse. He was on a working visit in the Spanish Lookout area when we caught up with him at an event. He fielded questions on all the burning issues surrounding the immigration scandal. He got pretty testy with the media when he was asked about David Nanes Schnitzer. Minister Hulse said that he was the one who signed an order to revoke that nationality – and that he believes the investigation should start with the Justice of the Peace – who is the brother of Tourism Minister Manuel Heredia – who signed a document saying that he knew Schnitzer – a piece of information that would later prove fraudulent because of the timeline attached to Schnitzer’s whereabouts – he had not been in Belize for the five years required to obtain nationality. Hulse went on to say that he had no problem with a police investigation into this matter. Here’s that interview:

 

David Nanes Schnitzer

Reporter
“You blocked an investigation into Nanes Schnitzer; you stood up and blocked it. You blocked a senate investigation with your signature on the nationality document?”

 

Godwin Hulse, Minister of Immigration

“No, sir, please, get that matter straight. We signed an order to revoke his nationality. You know that happened. I did, that’s published,and that went through the gazette. That’s a fact; so that’s not fiction. That was part of this whole investigation. [Could you just listen, man?] I am saying, while we are investigating the senate, it would be ludicrous to have two or three investigations going along with the same matter. So, the Nanes Schnitzer fits into this just like the William Dyck.”

 

Reporter
Who are the people held accountable in the Nanes Schnitzer case? That is not in the audit report, so I do not believe that would actually be followed up as part of the probe?”

 

Godwin Hulse

Godwin Hulse
“Well, I don’t know, I haven’t seen; I haven’t read the full report but now that you raised it can be looked at. It can be looked up, yes, and see who are the people who brought it all the way up. I have no difficulty and I’ll say this a million times, I have no difficulty with any document I signed because, so help me, God, if I found out it was fraudulent I would be the first to revoke and put the people out. But what I’m saying as minister and sometimes I sat there until eight – nine in the night. I had to set in systems where I made sure the other people there were signing with me were sitting there, so I could say did you do this? Is this correct? Is this your signature? And then I signed. Remember after that it had three processes still to go through. I did the same thing in Natural Resources Ministry. People sat there with me and signed until late in the night. It is a stressful job for the minister to take that on especially when you think you have a team behind you that should the honorable and honest, but in fact they have a game and they are smiling at you and smiling in your face. I personally would really want to see them go to jail.”

 

Reporter

“Sir, would it be irregular for Miss Addy Pacheco to pick up that document? Because the document show that she actually picked up that document for Nanes Schnitzer. Would that be regular or irregular?”

 

Godwin Hulse

“Well, if she had permission to pick it up then; because the Department does have a requirement that you sign who picks up passport. And I don’t know why she would have been picking it up but, if she did and didn’t have the permission, then they should never have given it to her.”

 

Reporter

“The Justice of the Peace signed that he knew him; the brother of Minister Manuel Heredia; Justice of the Peace signed that he knew Nanes Schnitzer before 2012, so all of that is being fraudulently obtained; who is being held accountable for that?”

 

Godwin Hulse

“If the justice of the peace said that he knew him and that he was here that is your first thing; that is the man that is accountable for trying to say that he knows this man is here, which is the requirement, when he didn’t know the man was here; that is the first case.”

 

Reporter

“But you appear to be blocking the investigation, sir?”

 

Godwin Hulse

“Man, Mister Wade, block what investigation? Could we be serious? Why would I block it? Why would I be blocking it? I don’t give two points. I already cancelled his nationality and dash him out the country; that was my responsibility; that happened already.”

 

Reporter

“But you do agree that it requires a police investigation?”

 

Godwin Hulse

“Then let the police investigate. I have no problem with that. You are calling for one; let it happen.”

 

Reporter

“Would you direct your director to go ahead and report the matter to police?”

 

Godwin Hulse

“I have no problem. Yes. I would direct her now, yesterday, last week and anytime.”

 

Reporter

“Shouldn’t it have been done last month when the thing mattered?”

 

Godwin Hulse

“Listen to me, good. Listen to me good. If the media is suggesting that Godwin Hulse should run everything in the department, trust me, Godwin Hulse can. But the whole department goes home – you will get two passports a year, they will be genuine passports and you will get no damn visa. You will get three or four nationality but they will be very clean. I have to work with a team that is working.”

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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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