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Aug 16, 2022

Tourism Police Unit Receives Donation from Ministry of Tourism

On Monday, the Tourism Police Unit received a donation of motorcycles and bicycles from the Ministry of Tourism to assist personnel from the agency with patrolling the streets of Belize City and other tourist destinations.  News Five’s Isani Cayetano reports.

 

Isani Cayetano, Reporting

Since its inception, the Tourism Police Unit has been working carefully to ensure the safety of the citizenry, as well as the security of visitors who call on Belize.  The team of officers attached to the unit has done its best with the limited resources at its disposal.  On Monday, the Ministry of Tourism, via the Belize Tourism Board, donated eight motorcycles and ten bicycles to the men and women of the Belize Police Department who are assigned to the unit.

 

Anthony Mahler

Anthony Mahler, Minister of Tourism

“We have had a long working partnership to ensure that the tourism industry is safe, to ensure that Belizeans are safe.  Far too often, people say we are trying to make tourists safe, but we have to be safe at home first and then that will be projected to the international arena.  We can look at other destinations throughout history that crime has impacted significantly, in terms of its economy, in terms of its tourism industry.  Acapulco which is one of the leading cities in Mexico for many, many years, is now a relative ghost town because of crime and violence in that area.”

 

Accepting the donation on behalf of the B.P.D. was Commissioner of Police Chester Williams.  He, too, spoke about the cooperation with the Belize Tourism Board and what it means for the well-being of all stakeholders in the travel and leisure sector.

 

Chester Williams

Chester Williams, Commissioner of Police

“As you would know that over the years we have forged a very strong partnership between the police and the B.T.B.  That partnership has led to a number of resources to be able to effectively perform our duties in areas that are known as tourist destinations.  It is difficult for central government to provide everything we need for police to do their duties and so when we have these types of partnerships, it is extremely good and at the end of the day, the stakeholders in the tourism industry will benefit.”

 

The dirt bikes and bicycles will be distributed to T.P.U. offices across the country.  Upkeep, beyond the donation itself, however, falls on the Belize Police Department.

 

Chester Williams

“While we get equipment, they will only last as long as we take care of them and so, servicing, maintenance is essential and I am sure the commander is going to make sure that we do what needs to be done for them to last as long as we want them to.  Moving forward, we continue to look forward to that good bond between ourselves and the B.T.B., and I see my good friend in the corner there, Mr. Evan Tillett has been very helpful to the police, working with us.  I was told just a few minutes ago that the tourism police have now been given the downstairs of this building to be used as an office because upstairs was very tight for them to operate and so now, they have more office space.”

 

According to Minister of Tourism Anthony Mahler, government is prepared to assist the unit with the necessary training opportunities.

 

Anthony Mahler

“These equipment that we are giving is just the start.  We want to collaborate with the police department to ensure that they are well-equipped to be as efficient as possible and that includes training, that includes other equipment that they may need to ensure that Belizeans, as well as our guests, are safe.”

 

Isani Cayetano For News Five.

 


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