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Nov 29, 2010

Where will the dead sleep?

We have reported that the Lord Ridge Cemetery is running out of burial plots to bury the City’s dead. At last count, there were only seven spaces left. The City Council plans to open a new graveyard, miles away. That met the quick rejection of the residents of Hattieville who are not at all pleased with that development because they were not consulted and their immediate needs do not include the cemetery. They now have support from another group. News Five’s Delahnie Bain reports.

Delahnie Bain, Reporting

The proposal for a new public cemetery at mile thirteen on the Western Highway has already been rejected by the residents of Hattieville and now the funeral directors are dead set against it. In a letter, to the Belize City Council, seven stakeholders in the funeral business announced that they are petitioning against the new burial site. Those service providers are: Luis Belisle, Knox Arnold, Albert Leiva, David Coye, Marlon Jenkins, Kurk Dennison and the seventh was listed only as Mr. Longsworth.

The petition came about after a meeting between the funeral directors and City Councilor Wayne Usher, which was convened to present the proposed policy for the operation of the cemetery. The petitioners laid out several points against the proposal, including that the project would not serve as a sustainable revenue stream and that proposed prices would be significantly higher than those at Lord Ridge. Their second reason is that CitCo will not attain value-added nor increased efficiency and effectiveness because the service is not a primary focus.

Thirdly, they feel that the council is venturing into the arena of private enterprise and threatening to displace private businesses and their employees. In response to that, Councilor Usher referred us to the governing policy, which states that “The council has the legal authority to establish, maintain and control cemeteries as provided by section thirty of the Belize City Council Act and section twenty-six of the Public Health Act.” What that means, Usher says, is that it is the private sector that has ventured into the council’s arena.

But it is the last point that struck a chord with the councilor, who told us today that the petitioners are out to tarnish his name. The service providers said “The undersigned petitions are careful to point out that it will conduct its own private investigation (now and in the future) to ensure that Councilor Wayne Usher (and other councilors for that matter) do not profit from this proposed misconceived venture.” Usher says that’s the same as calling him a thief and since the petition was forwarded to both television and written media houses, he is seeking legal advice because he will not allow them to smear his reputation.

Delahnie Bain for News Five.

Usher also noted that CitCo sent up to Cabinet a paper back in April providing options including partnering with Homeland Memorial or allowing the private sector to take over the services. He says the City Council agreed with the suggestions, but it was not approved by Cabinet and instead they were given the twenty acres at mile thirteen.

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11 Responses for “Where will the dead sleep?”

  1. horsey says:

    if de dont have space give them ur house and bed…belizean hard ears and stupid…de done give them a spot…take it or leave it..

  2. Robert says:

    The people of Hattieville are being selfish, the private vendors are being selfish — can’t anyone here rise above his petty, selfish interests? Nobody thinks or cares about the needs and good of the nation.

  3. Maria Marshall says:

    Belize should have a crematorium.
    It would be one possible solution to the present burial problem.
    I am disgusted and ashamed that people we vote into government did not forsee this inevitable problem and done something about it years ago.

    What we have to do now is find possibilities of resolving it, select the best option and make it work.
    Every Belizean should play a part in doing so by being involved in discussions and solutions.

  4. margab says:

    Belize Belize Belize if onley 7 space left what or govement official doing, that # can be use up in one day with all the crimes in Belize, this new space shoud have bin completed and utilize over a year ago[ if i dont have all the fact please help me} and please dont blame the prime minister becaus ten year old child coud have made that dission.

  5. ballz says:

    use barrow yard for a burial ground

  6. sabuskii says:

    GETTIN A NEW BURIAL GROUND IS JUST ENCOURAGING THEM BAD BOYS OUT THERE TO KILL MORE PEOPLE LOL

  7. Martin says:

    This is just unacceptable….. Belize you should do better than this, clean up your acts and get a new cemetary, but really since when a cemetary only has 7 spaces left for our dead ??? really ??? get a grip, vote and start construction ASAP……

  8. Belizegail says:

    @Robert: Hattieville people are NOT selfish, what the hell, you’re not the one that will live next to the burial ground, okay. We Hattieville people shouldn’t roll over and accept anything you city people don’t want.

  9. CEO says:

    Why would “leaders” wait until there are only 7 spaces left in a cemetery to start to scramble and wonder where will we bury our dead? Is this crazy or what. They are out of burial plots by the time I get done typing this comment.

    Our leaders at work!

  10. belizean says:

    UNU PEOPLE FOOL IF ONLY SEVEN SPACE IS LEFT THEN THAT MEANS ONLY SEVEN MORE PEOPLE WILL DIE…GET IT…NOW PRAY U ARE NOT ONE OF THE SEVEN….JEJE!!

  11. Earl Grey says:

    THIS IS OLD NEWS…………….WHY ARE WE STILL TALKING ABOUT THIS??????????????

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