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Letter: The PNP supports Belize citizenship rights at home and abroad
Published on July 9, 2014 Email To Friend    Print Version

Dear Sir:

I write in response to the commentary posted by Wellington Ramos entitled: “The BPF is the last best hope for Belizeans who possess dual citizenships”. I would like to begin by stating publicly that the PNP supports the right of Belizeans living abroad having the ability to vote by proxy. The People’s National Party (PNP) is a party devoted to meeting the needs of the Belizean people at home and abroad. The PNP finds it is a travesty that our brothers and sisters abroad find themselves in a situation whereby they are displaced from the country of their birth or naturalization simply because they possess dual citizenship.

With that being said, the PNP has had a long-standing relationship of mutual respect and collaboration with the Belize People’s Front (BPF). We share many of the same ideals and ambitions both to represent the needs of Belizeans and create a political situation that is post-partisan, and against the political corruption that undermines the dignity and progress of our people.

As someone who supports the BPF, Mr Ramos’ desire should be communication and collaboration with like-minded individuals rather misrepresentation and bashing. I encourage Mr Ramos to check the facts before attempting to publish sweeping generalizations that are composed of erroneous “facts” that are far from the truth. As someone who is employed as a political scientist, more is to be expected.

In naming the rights that our sister and brothers in the Diaspora should be entitled to, Mr Ramos includes “the right to run for office while maintaining their dual nationalities.” The fundamental issue that is present with this statement is the religious and political philosophy that “a man cannot serve two masters” and its integration into (American in particular) political policy.

In the US Immigration and Nationality Act, US citizenship will be lost upon “accepting, serving in, or performing the duties of any office, post, or employment under the government of a foreign state or a political subdivision thereof” (Sec. 349 (a) (4) INA).

Dual citizens of the US and Belize would therefore lose their citizenship upon accepting office in Belize. This consequence is not beneficial to our sisters and brothers in the Diaspora.

Wil Maheia
Leader of the PNP
Reads: 4212

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Hubert Enriquez:

I can only surmise that Mr Wellington Ramos was cleverly seeking to provoke a response to his article from the other alternative parties in Belize. I say this because it is the same Mr Ramos who also recently in article in the local press, decried the fact that the two main political parties were not supportive of voting rights for diaspora Belizeans. The problem now though is that Mr Ramos did not bother to check with leaders of the other parties before he made his public pronouncements.

As articulated on a live Blog radio interview with Mr Hubert Pipersberg, The VIP stands in full solidarity with diaspora Belizeans in their quest for equal treatment under the laws and constitution of Belize. The VIP will be issuing a more detailed policy position on this matter in due course.


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