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Oct 27, 2021

Reparations for Slavery Taken to the House

It has been over a hundred and eighty years since the emancipation of slavery, yet compensation for the wrong that has been done to African people remains an issue to this day.  In Belize, reparations have also been the topic of discussion among historians for many years.  But the Government of Belize is taking that issue a step further by introducing a motion in parliament to address the injustices and human rights violations faced by our African ancestors.  Deputy Prime Minister Cordel Hyde tabled the motion and placed it into historical context.


Cordel Hyde

Cordel Hyde, Deputy Prime Minister

“Now therefore be it resolved that this honorable house debate the issue and take the unanimous decision that, one: the Government of Belize is morally, legally and ethically obliged on behalf of the former slaves and the descendants of Belize, then the British settlement in the Bay of Honduras, to present the appropriate case in the United Kingdom to determine whether as a matter of law, the United Kingdom is liable for the unlawful seizure, transportation and subsequent enslavement of African people in Belize under British colonial rule up until 1833 and to receive the appropriate reparations from Britain.  Two: the Government of Belize, in presenting this case to the appropriate body, shall seek to valuate not only the economic cost of slavery in Belize but also based on expert evidence seek reparations for the former slaves and their descendants for the denial of their culture and history, human rights abuses, including but not limited to murder, rape, flogging, branding, denial of freedom of movement, freedom to worship, freedom to own land and the right to education.”


Kareem Musa

Kareem Musa, Minister of Home Affairs

“This is one of those motions that each and every one of us must place on record our full support because, as we know, the colonolization of our region has been something that we’ve been having to live with for so many years.  I know that the colonial masters felt that they did us a huge favor in 1838 when they emancipated the slaves, but the consequences, the generational consequences have had a profound impact in a most negative manner for so many years.”

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