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Sep 19, 2013

But is it the first time that allegations have been brought against Penner?

Ironically, this isn’t the first time Penner has been accused of being involved in the fast-tracking of documents. In 2012, just before general elections, he came under fire when the Ministry of Immigration engaged in an unprecedented mass-nationalization of immigrants. Nobody on the government side bothered to hide the fact that it was purely a political gimmick to get voters by the hundreds, and there were confirmed reports that many of the nationalizations were being done without the proper documentation or vetting. Penner was right in the middle of it all. Tonight we revisit that story, thanks to our friends at Love Television.


Marion Ali, Reporting

We saw Minister of Information and Broadcasting and the U.D.P.’s Standard Bearer for Cayo North East, Elvin Penner, helping some of the people in his division and we spoke with him shortly after.



“You’ve heard the allegations that all kinds of hanky-panky is going on; illegal registration and naturalization. What do you ha ve to say to that?”


Elvin Penner

Elvin Penner, U.D.P. Area Representative, Cayo North East

“Well I am sure that from my area there is none that is going to go through without the complete proper procedure. We have taken out the police records for each and every person that qualified. I have about a hundred and so applications home that I personally felt did not qualify and I didn’t even bring them. I am going to deal with them later once they can assure me that they qualify; then I’ll bring them in after elections. Friday is the deadline for registration for the town board elections as you all know, so we have to make sure that we get all those who can register for the town board in by Friday so that is going to be another rush on Friday to get everybody in on time. We have been doing a lot of registration recently for young boys and girls that have never registered before because you know we can’t transfer either because transfer period is only in July and August.”


Penner said that he is also paying half of the fees to process his constituents.”


Elvin Penner

“I am telling them that now as well. I will pay half of the cost of the nationality. Of course we do the police record and everything and so there is a cost to it. But it is of course twofold again. It’s a political reason behind it. We want to get our voters in. I won’t deny that any at all. I am right now digging myself into a whole, but I am sure that there will be some Good Samaritan out there later on who will help me out.”


It seems like there is a distinct lack of good Samaritans right about now. Penner, who is the Area Representative of Cayo North-east, won that seat in 2012 against P.U.P. challenger Landy Habet. This brings into question the issue of a recall which would have to be triggered in eighteen months since his election which he won by only seventeen votes. Penner was accused at that time of the general elections of bribing voters by paying for their nationality documents. It is notable that from 2008 to 2012 Penner served as a full-fledged Minister in the U.D.P. Cabinet. In 2012 he was downgraded to a Minister of State. And now he’s on the backbench.  

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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5 Responses for “But is it the first time that allegations have been brought against Penner?”

  1. Concern says:

    So much people got nationality papers, land and was able to vote immediately, without the legal regulation being followed that I am sure we have many of those serious gang people in Belize, because no one had time to investigate anyone. Thank you Penner for putting other people lives at risk, yes I know…YOU GUYS JUST WANTED TO WIN AND YOU DID!

  2. Jeez! says:

    A Godless Man with an Unquenchable thirst for easy money!

  3. StandUp says:

    He won by 17 GUATEMALAN votes!!

  4. Citizen says:

    He used his Immigration stomping ground to win by the 17 Guatemalan votes, and now the same stomping ground has assisted him loose by one south Korean pass port! Hmmmmmmm…. are there more yet to come?

  5. Guerra says:

    Happy are those Guatemalans gifted by the betrayal of Penner to win an election, without having to marry someone from Belize as they get their papales but little did he knew that it would take one Korean to make him fall. With a little bit of luck and a touch of hokus pokus…..walla… he manage to win by 17!

    Penner U know the creole proverb, what sweet you…will sour you!

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