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May 16, 2012

Commonwealth Sec. Gen. talks development for Belize

Kamalesh Sharma

The Commonwealth Secretary General, Kamalesh Sharma, began the first of his three day visit to Belize on the occasion of the Commonwealth Local Government Forum.  Prior to arriving in the country, Sharma was in Mexico City with President Felipe Calderón, the Chair of the G20. Dialogue between Heads of the Commonwealth and the G20 are customary, and the Secretary General will discuss those meetings with Prime Minister Dean Barrow.  He will also meet with members of the Belize Cabinet and attend a board meeting of the Commonwealth Local Government Forum. Earlier today, News Five spoke to the Secretary General about how the Commonwealth can provide practical help to Belize.


Kamalesh Sharma, Commonwealth Secretary General

“I like to visit member states in order to educate myself and inform myself of what their priorities are because in the commonwealth you have to partnership with our member states in the direction in which they would like to go themselves. We have a good collaboration with Belize in many areas now—whether it is democracy, governance, institution building, the rule of law and that clustered all in the development field so that our trade, or in the area of diversity.”


Jose Sanchez

“Would we be looking at infrastructure, physical tangible things or we looking at social development? What do you think that focus will be?”


Kamalesh Sharma

“Well two; human resources development and institution strengthening and institution building. Commonwealth is not active in all areas; it doesn’t have to be. For instance, infrastructure is looked after by many other times organizations, but also there is resilience. What kind of strength the society is gaining within it. And here the human resources development as well as institution building and institution strengthening are the key areas and that’s where we have been last active. But I must say that the future and the opportunities and the dilemmas of the young people are something that should be particularly on our minds.”


Jose Sanchez

“The decimation of our youth population, particularly in our city, because of gun violence, because of gang activity, because of lack of education, because of the decay of social and moral values—it is a serious problem in Belize City that affects the entire country. Now knowing that, what programs, what could you think of that could help us with something like that?”


Kamalesh Sharma

“I am going to discuss this hopefully with the honorable Prime Minister and the Minister for Youth Affairs. We would like very much to assist in the programs which Belize is developing for itself. We can help a lot in the environment for young people which can be made positive for the young people in the various ways in which it can be done—for instance in education really it is from the multi-grade teaching. And Belize is probably the country with respect of the most wanted. I hope to meet banks as well as to try to convince them that lending from banks on commercial terms; loans are extremely important. In order to mainstream the young people, the budgeting which is done for these ministries, where is the role of the young people and women in all the budgeting that is done. If the environment for the young people picks up, then it makes it possible for some of the more localized issues—to deal with crime that you have referred to—to be able to be isolated and cured.”


On Friday, the Commonwealth Secretary General will leave the country. Prior to his departure he will announce new partnership agreements with Belize.

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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1 Response for “Commonwealth Sec. Gen. talks development for Belize”

  1. Ricky Malthus says:

    Except for Canada and Australia, all the countries of the so-called British Commonwealth have their hands out begging, a legacy of slavery , imperialism, and colonialism. All the countries of Caribbean and Africa are lining up to beg. These countries have no initiative to become self-sustaining but are waiting for monetary aid to fill their bellies and when that aid is consumed , wait for more aid from other countries. Check the ststistics. prove yourselves right, if you have the initiative.

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