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Aug 6, 2019

Kareem’s Trip to China Ends in Controversy

Caribbean Shores Area Representative Kareem Musa returned from China on Sunday, following an unofficial visit to the East Asian country last week.  Accompanied by a contingent of three persons, including Deputy Mayor Oscar Arnold, Councilor Michael “Chips” Noralez and attorney Kevin Arthurs, all members of the People’s United Party, the group took in the sights and sounds of China.  But Musa’s trip to the largest country in the world is stirring controversy locally because of diplomatic relations with Taiwan which has been a giving partner.  Tonight, the parliamentarian maintains that his visit to China was at the invitation of Johnston Ou, Chairman of the Belize Chinese Association.   Ou, in a formal statement, has refuted that claim, saying that the offer came directly from China’s Zhi Gong Party.  He says that since he was in China on business, he simply accompanied the delegation as a translator.  The association, says Ou, was unaware of the visit since it was not an official event.  When asked to clear up the confusion, Musa emphasized that the invitation came from Chairman Ou several months ago.


Kareem Musa, Area Representative, Caribbean Shores

Kareem Musa

“I was approached a few months ago by Mr. Johnston Ou, who, as you know, is the President of the Belize Chinese Association, inviting me to come to China.  At that time it was fairly unclear as to what was the purpose of the trip, but he did say it was a friendly trip and most importantly it was an unofficial trip.  So let me make that very clear that I was not there on any official business either for the party as a member of the Opposition, nor was I there as a member of the People’s United Party.  I made that clear to Mr. Johnston at the very outset that if it’s an unofficial trip I have no problem going on a trip like that and for me it was purely educational to see China and to experience all that China has to offer. So Mr. Ou, and I am told that there is a press release where Mr. Ou is saying that he did not invite me.  Thankfully I do have witnesses that Mr. Ou was there and did in fact invite me.  I do not doubt that the trip was sponsored by the Zhi Gong Nationalist Party because we did in fact on this trip met with members of the party, in particular the chairman of the party and the vice chairman of the party.  So I have no doubt in saying that perhaps they may have paid for the trip and sponsored the trip but I have no way of proving that.  The only thing that I can prove is that the president of the Belize Chinese Association is the one that invited me.  I have no connection to anybody in China for me to have reached out to them or them reach out to me and so obviously the invitation had to have come from somebody local and that person was Mister Ou.”

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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