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Feb 19, 2018

The Memorial Move in Effect

Is turmoil brewing yet again within the already fickle Fort George Tourism Zone?  Independent tour operators, as well as small business owners and vendors, are up in arms over a decision to have them relocated to the nearby Memorial Park.  They contend that they are deliberately being kept out of the reach of cruise passengers as they exit the Fort Street Tourism Village in Belize City.  The management committee of the tourism zone, however, has issued a release stating that stakeholder consultations have been held since November 2016 to discuss the issue of developing a comprehensive plan for the area.  The proposal, according to the Belize City Council, is to improve guest satisfaction, and safety, as well as to alleviate traffic congestion within the Fort George area.  The rerouting of loading for tour operators directly affects businessman Yhony Rosado.  Today, he shared his frustration on the recent development.

 

Yhony Rosado

Yhony Rosado, Tour Operator, Cavetubing.com

“As we speak right now, we’re having another issue where they are trying to push the vendors farther down into Memorial Park which is less money for the local city man, local Belizean and they are trying to push the tour guides as far as they can, not to Memorial Park, not to B.T.L. Park but as far as they could to another park which is Marion Jones and the tour operators will be pushed too.  It is all to comply with the cruise ship demand.  If B.T.B. and the city council and the government do not do anything about it they are going to pull off the ships.  But I was very outspoken from ever since to tell our government that we don’t need to listen. When tourists come to Belize they want to see a Belizean person, they want to see a Creole person, they want to see a Mestizo person.  So the tourists and local people have got a love affair from ever since I’m born and now the FSTV and the Belize Tourism Board and city council and the zone area which is Radisson area and some government officials.  They are seeing it as negative for tourists to meet with Belizeans because we are too hungry, which they have created that part, so they have pushed us farther and farther.  Like for example, I use to park my buses right next to the village, on the seaside, they moved us from there to the Memorial Park and now they’ve moved us from there to St. Catherine’s and they only moved me so far because Chukka’s buses are allowed to park there.  If it wasn’t for Chukka buses they would have pushed me farther down but I am demanding the same treatment that you guys give Chukka.  Why can’t you give us, we have the same tour guides license.”

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