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Aug 6, 2019

What Does Going to China Mean for PUP and Taiwan?

According to Musa, the Chairman of the Belize Chinese Association may have been pressured into distancing himself from his role in facilitating the visit since the matter has become political.  His opponent in Caribbean Shores, Lee Mark Chang, has roots in Mainland China.   Musa says that the very invitation that was extended to him was also made to the United Democratic Party.  Beyond party politics, however, is the issue of Belize’s diplomatic relationship with Taiwan, a mutual commitment that has seen Belize benefiting tremendously from bilateral agreements.  So what does a trip to China say about Musa or the People’s United Party?  Here’s how he responded to those questions.

 

Kareem Musa, Area Representative, Caribbean Shores

Kareem Musa

“It is not lost on me the society in which we live.  Mr. Ou has to come back to Belize and he has to earn an honest living and so I do not blame him for taking the stance that he has now taken.  I don’t expect him to say anything else because while we were there the pressure was already on him because it was discovered by members of the United Democratic Party that he had taken us and invited us to China.  And so incredible amounts of pressure was being brought to bear on Mr. Ou and so I am not surprised by the position that he has taken, obviously that’s something that you’ll have to interview him when he returns.  But like I said, there are many other witnesses who can attest to the fact that he was the one that invited us.  If he is saying that it was not in his personal capacity I fully believe that, I don’t think that Mr. Ou paid for the trip or sponsored the trip.  I think that it perhaps would be another entity like the Zhi Gong Party but I cannot say that because I don’t have no proof of that.”

 

Isani Cayetano

“From a geopolitical perspective, mainland China and Taiwan, it kind of gives the optic, considering the fact that you were there with three other known members of the People’s United Party, that while it may not have been an official visit it gives the impression that the P.U.P. are in China, as opposed to whatever agreement or relationship Belize and Taiwan has.”

 

Kareem Musa

“Like I mentioned, one of the preconditions of me accepting to go on this trip was in fact that it was an unofficial trip.  Even though it was unofficial, and like I said, I have no capacity to make any commitments on behalf of the party or the Government of Belize in these meetings, so let’s make that very clear.  An unofficial trip, I do not have the authority, I am not even a member of the National Executive of the People’s United Party.  I was informed that by the press release I was selected.  Now I don’t know if others were selected, but what I can say is that I know that there were members of the United Democratic Party, an invitation was also extended to them.  Whether they plan to go on a trip or not is still unknown to me at this time.”


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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