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Sep 5, 2017

O.W. Sees Protests Wednesday over Gaspar Vega Land Issue

The battleground over the continuing scandal in the Ministry of Natural Resources shifts north to Orange Walk Town. On Wednesday, the Opposition People’s United Party, led by its Northern Caucus and Orange Walk North executive committee, is assembling constituents at nine to protest the behaviour of area representative and former Minister of Natural Resources, Gaspar Vega. But at this time, it is known that the protestors will not parade in front of the mansion of the former DPM because a permit to do so has been retracted. It is also known that Orange Walk North U.D.P. constituents will be camping out in front of his residence. Vega resigned from cabinet in March of 2016 after a compensation deal for eight hundred thousand dollars for prime property next to the Haulover Bridge taken over by Government from Vega’s son Andre and attorney Sharon Pitts. Subsequently numerous land documents have surfaced showing a pattern of cooperation between members of Vega’s family and various friends and acquaintances in acquiring land across the country. While not officially endorsed by the United Democratic Party, Vega’s supporters are preparing to counter the P.U.P. protest. We spoke today to Opposition Leader John Briceño.

 

John Briceño

John Briceño, P.U.P. Leader

“The people from Orange Walk North decided that they wanted to have a protest. And they met with [Ramon] “Monchi” Cervantes and the executive of the Orange Walk North P.U.P. committee, executive. And the people of Orange Walk North are saying that they are ashamed, they are disgusted, and they feel that they want to have an opportunity to make known their displeasure and their disgust about the behaviour of their area representative. Now the Orange Walk North executive then met with the Northern Caucus to point to us what was their plan; and it is only then on Friday, that night, that the Northern Caucus – this is not a national campaign – the Northern Caucus decided that we are going to support our colleague in Orange Walk North, and also because we in the North are ashamed of the behaviour and the actions of the former Deputy Prime Minister and former Minister of Natural Resources, Gaspar Vega. We believe that all of us norteños need to get up and stand up and speak out and let the Prime Minister do the right thing. If the Prime Minister and the U.D.P. are so much against corruption – while he may not be able to kick him out of the House, they can kick him out of the U.D.P. But it seems that the opposite effect is taking place because I see an ad going around where the U.D.P. is standing up for corruption, and they are attempting to have a counter-protest – one that is not going to march, but one that is going to stand in front of Gaspar Vega’s residence.  We are having a peaceful protest, but a protest that is going to stand up and very loudly and very clearly demonstrate our disgust and displeasure of Gaspar Vega, and by extension, the behaviour of the U.D.P., because as I have been saying over and over: if the Prime Minister is against corruption, then he needs to stand against Gaspar Vega.”

 

The P.U.P. event begins on the San Lorenzo Road next to the Northern Regional Hospital and winds down in the heart of Orange Walk Town at the Central Park.

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