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Nov 15, 2017

Are ‘Canceled’ Nationalities, Passports Still Being Used?

The Minister of Immigration and Nationality, Senator Godwin Hulse, is the final authority on the granting of nationality certificates. In the Auditor General’s special report, two cases were cited of nationality certificates granted despite the persons having acquired permanent residence in too short an amount of time to have qualified for nationality and later passports. While the persons in question have yet to surface, the Ministry, according to Hulse, has taken action to prevent possible usage of the documents although an investigation did not make clear who was responsible for the original error that led to the grant.

 

Godwin Hulse

Godwin Hulse, Minister of Immigration and Nationality

“It turns out as I recall, that they did in fact have permanent residence issued by the previous director, Ms. [Ruth] Meighan, so they looked properly legit. The file looked properly legit with all its minutes on the minute sheet. In the investigation, it seemed that somewhere between the application accepted by the counter clerk and the processing by the Director, something went awry – those persons were Ms. [Ady] Pacheco and Mr. [Gordon] Wade. I could not nail down who or where or what, but that is one of the reasons and one of the cases why they were recommended to go before the Public Service Commission. Notwithstanding that however, because they did not swear in, we could not find an oath; I ordered that Ms. [Maria] Marin immediately do two things. One, notify all ports of entry, clip the passports so that when they would show up, immediately they would be nullified, and take measures to cancel the certificates. That is of course on record so you can check with her, that was what was done at that time. So when it showed up at the Audit Report, I was satisfied that we had already taken the necessary action with those two. Clearly, I was upset that this had come to me in this way. But we were unable to locate how and when the permanent residence was issued, but I remember clearly that the permanent residence had been issued and signed by the then-Director, Ruth Meighan; and that of course, at the time that the file was presented, seemed very valid. Those passports have not shown up yet as far as I know, but the notice is there to clip them as soon as they showed up.”

 

Eamon Courtenay, P.U.P. Senator

“Just to be clear, you are saying that in relation to these two individuals, Mr. Nohle and Mr. Davis, their nationality has been canceled?”

 

Godwin Hulse

“The instruction was given for the certificates to be canceled and the passports to be clipped.”

 

Eamon Courtenay

“But you’re saying the passports haven’t surfaced?”

 

Godwin Hulse

“Not as far as I know, Senator.”

 

Eamon Courtenay

“So they are using those passports right now, masquerading as Belizeans, when you are saying that their nationality has been canceled?”

 

Godwin Hulse

“Could well be.”

 

Eamon Courtenay

“Is there a process for INTERPOL or some international immigration organization to be informed that these passports are invalid?”

 

Godwin Hulse

“I can’t say that; I don’t know that that in fact has been done.”

 

Eamon Courtenay

“Minister, just to go back to the process: Ms. Pacheco and Mr. Wade, you are saying that something went wrong from the counter clerk and their dealing with it? Are you excluding Ms. Ruth Meighan?”

 

Godwin Hulse

“No, none at all, because the file goes up…”

 

Eamon Courtenay

“We understand the process but the concern for us is this…”

 

Godwin Hulse

“I would not exclude the Director; because when the file comes to me, I always ensure that the Director says, ‘Minister, the file is complete and recommended for your approval,’ and signed by her; so I cannot exclude the Director.”

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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 “Are ‘Canceled’ Nationalities, Passports Still Being Used?”

  1. manuel pinto says:

    Pueden cancelarle la nacionalidad beliceña a todos los guatemaltecos, pero aun así el el “Si” para ir a la Corte Internacional de Justicia va a ganar.

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