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Oct 12, 2016

Senator Godwin Hulse denies conflict of interest in Senate vote

Godwin Hulse

The People’s United Party is calling out Senator Godwin Hulse for casting a vote during the last sitting of the Senate on September thirtieth.  The argument here is that Hulse’ participation in the process constituted a conflict of interest since he also serves in the capacity of Minister of Immigration.  Furthermore, opposition senators Valerie Woods and Eamon Courtenay contend that Hulse’ vote contravenes Section one-twenty-one of the Constitution of Belize.  Today, at a passing out parade held by the Belize Police Department, we caught up with Hulse who told the media that he is hard done by the comments of his colleagues.


Godwin Hulse, Government Senator

“I have to take a position against it man.  What are we doing, standing the democracy on its head?  In the civilized world, parliament works man and we have to respect that institution of which we are part.  I am particularly aggrieved because the People’s United Party brought a motion, the motion failed and I suggested that we have a joint investigation.  There was a lot of protest against that and the government decided okay, bring back the motion.  We opened back the senate and I moved the motion to suspend the standing orders so that the motion could be brought back.  It was brought back.  It was brought by the church and two motions were brought: one was brought by the churches and one was brought by the Leader of the Opposition Honorable Eamon Courtenay.  The church motion came first and it was debated thoroughly, thoroughly, thoroughly.  I did not participate in that debate.  Any of you cameramen who were out there would have seen that I did not even go across to talk to anybody.  For the most part I was back in the committee room and so the amendments that Senator Courtenay proposed for the most part were also accepted.  There was a vote right down the line and I think that you all need to remember that, I think four or five times and the members of the opposition side voted I, I, I, I.  Then there were two or three I think, three amendments that the senator for the business community proposed and those were not accepted and with good reason.  So at the end when the overall vote came I voted, that is my legal, constitutional responsibility.  To talk about some sort of conflict of interest under Section 121 of the Constitution is absolutely ludicrous, it says you should not put yourself in a position where there could be a conflict of interest.  There’s no conflict.  The conflict of interest would have been if I was on the committee investigating me, then that would have been the conflict, not in a motion to create an investigation which embodies the exact wording of the constitution in which there thirteen senators.  I am only one.”

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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