Is Belize the new Colombia? Belize is the only Central American corridor open. Is there any wonder why Guatemala has annexed Sarstoon Island where Guatemala, Honduras and Belize are benefiting from drug transshipment. Is this the reason why Southern Command is here? Everything is interrelated; US visas of high officials are being revoked, Mr Middleton has visa phobia. The youth is learning by observation that they must survive by any means necessary.
Look at the mockery of the senate select committee, notwithstanding every day someone walks from a murder trial at the Supreme Court due to nolle prosequi. The corrupted are not prosecuted, in fact they are rewarded, this is the level of cynicism being fostered in our youth.
If any, past indication is a trend right now. Before Easter, crime will escalate, especially petty crime. Anything to get a few bucks right now. Prostitution will increase and buying power is going down so more cell phones will be stolen. Belize has a service driven, consumer driven economy rather than a productive economy. People will want to consume and will not care how they get it. There is going to be less opportunity to hire youth for jobs and, if they are hired, they will not work as much because employers are going to have to pay them more, assuming they have to pay income tax. Employers are not going to want to do that, they will rather work with the ones they currently have. The fix is a short-term fix (raising of taxes), but it is sure to have long-term misery.
This economic downturn and the raising of taxes is going to affect everybody and crime will become rampant. Scams will be on the increase, ripping people off, whatever people feel they have to do to get money. Syndicates and gangs will be on the increase, since they see the void on the streets being left by the police. Gangs will do more hits for money. Since desperate times call for desperate measures, there will be an increase in kidnappings, robbing of tourists and ransoms. People are on the edge right now, as things get harder, people will be more edgy faster. Then we go back the 2012 when tourist stop coming due to fear of danger. One tourist attack would damage this industry forever.
Government is busy raising taxes; can anyone explain what they are doing to alleviate poverty at the same time? They will do nothing because they will have to spend money. Crime will escalate because in Belize everything is inter connected. Government finding a million dollars to give teachers as an ‘Easter bonus’ in these hard economic times is clearly union busting. Notice they found it after they started raising taxes so those loyal stooges will still think they are getting their fair piece and that GoB is taking care of them. Lining up their pockets a bit to keep them loyal and blind.
On top of that, the BNTU is ready to elect a new leader as Luke Palacio can no longer be leader. Elena Smith is looking to be his successor. Trying to distract teachers from supporting this senator the UDP made a mistake of clear union busting, which needs to be challenged in court.
In my view the taxes measure is not going to go well and, in a few years or so, they are going to have more problems with the superbond. Their greed, poor managerial skills, drunken by power and stature we are the key factors. They are going to get money, but because the government is so corrupt, the monies will not go where it is supposed to go since there is no independent audit. Everything is hush, hush and everyone does not get to see it.
The youth on the streets are seeing the corruption not only optically. I am leaning to the question, is Belize a drug state? How do ministers get all this money and still not have money to pay the superbond? Where else are they getting the money from? Elrington does not care about the borders, because with an adjacency zone they could help Guatemala out with the trafficking. If we had a border, then we would not be the traffickers that we are. The US used to think that Belize was this golden spot in Central American used for trafficking; now they realize we are just as guilty.
Lastly, moving Chester Williams from Eastern Division East is going to have an impact, after working diligently with stakeholders to manage the crimes in the gang-ridden areas. Bringing back Vidal and Phillips, who has already failed when she had her opportunity to run Eastern Division. An additional assistant commissioner of police shows that the rogue or criminal behaviour is respected and rewarded. This criminogenic society allows gang leaders to meet with the PM and be paid allegedly. An already cynical populace has just lost their champion. Do you blame them for feeling even more helpless?
Over the years, Chester Williams has become their neighbourhood police officer. Envied for his qualifications this is sending yet another message to our youth that it is not worth getting qualified or politicians will push you around because they feel threatened. I am so ashamed of Eloidio Aragon. Being a former deputy commissioner, I thought he would have stood up for his comrade. Now he is part of the system; he too is a part of the corruption.
It goes to show that the status quo is benefiting from the crime and mayhem and really does not want to solve the problem. The social politician from CYDP and Youth for the Future is still there; no wonder they are not getting anywhere.
Abdulmajeed K Nunez