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Jan 15, 2020

Godwin Hulse: Lev Dermen is Not a Belizean

Lev Dermen

As you heard earlier, Prime Minister says there is no evidence yet to tie any member of cabinet or any other government official to the alleged bribery involving Lev Dermen. The Armenian/American national was flagged in the Audit General’s Report on the Immigration and Nationality Departments for 2011-2013 as one of several persons who acquired a nationality certificate, but there were no supporting documents to indicate if he was issued a passport. When News Five caught up with Minister Godwin Hulse, he commented on the issue saying that Dermen is not a Belizean. Here’s why:


Godwin Hulse

Godwin Hulse, Minister of Immigration

“His name came up in the audit report and when it came up in the audit report, there was a note that said they couldn’t find any passport having been issued. We couldn’t find any files, we haven’t seen any official certificates so as far as I am concerned, he is not a Belizean. And if he ever tried to be a Belizean, he would have to produce that certificate duly signed by a minister. All the former Ministers of Immigration I think are still alive in this country. Their signatures are well known; it’s an easy thing to go to a minister and say this look like your signature? He would have to produce that. If he doesn’t produce that, that can’t be advanced anywhere. So as far as I am concerned he is not a Belizean.  When he makes his statement or makes his court papers, if he calls names or soh, then that has to be dealt with. But up until that time, that’s where that rests. As far as I am concerned, this gentleman’s name was in the audit report; there was a very lengthy senate hearing. I was not part of the hearing; in fact I was on the stand being given evidence. And so we have to wait for that report as well to see what they say about those names. But from where I sit, if you can’t produce a certificate that was duly signed, if it cannot be shown that you were sworn it—because people forget those processes yo know. It is not just the signature of the minister; the law says you must be sworn in.  If you are not sworn in, you are not a citizen. And it is easy to check swearing in because everybody name deh and it is a public thing.”

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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