Barrow Administration Sanctions Corruption
Sunday, March 12, 2017, 16:57
Tuesday, 07 March 2017
The revelation that a UDP insider and former UDP Deputy Mayor of Belize, Eric Chang, bought stolen Visas through a conduit from a crooked Immigration official would have caused great alarm in any normal country. It is a crime. The fact that Eric Chang then tried to coerce Immigration officials to fix those stolen Visas to make them usable would have resulted in prosecution in any normal country. It is, in fact, also a crime. But in Belize, there will be no prosecution or arrest of Chang or his sidekick, UDP insider Patrick Tillett, because this Barrow administration appears to condone corruption at every level.
What did Chang want with those Visas? Who would have been brought into Belize using those Visas? Where would they have gone after their stay in Belize? Doesn’t this reek of human trafficking, which is another crime? Valid questions, but nobody in the Barrow administration will provide any answers.
It is the same with the Prime Minister’s good friend Gaspar Vega. So much evidence has been compiled against Vega, evidence which points to blatant, brazen, widespread corruption in the Ministry of Natural Resources. Vega manipulated and misappropriated the assets of Belizeans to enrich himself and members of his family. He used public monies to enrich his son. The evidence is all there. But there will be no investigation. There will be no arrest and no prosecution. Instead, the Prime Minister moved one of his more malleable lackeys to the Ministry where he is sure things will be kept quiet.
Currently Vega and every member of his family still enjoy all the spoils of his corruption at the Ministry of Natural Resources, and taxpayers are still paying for the fuel he uses in his luxury Lexus SUV which he was allowed to bring in duty-free. Apparently, if you are corrupt under the Dean Barrow administration it is a good thing. You are rewarded instead of punished.
It has been the same thing with Penner, who not only escaped any prosecution for his obviously criminal actions, but still got perks from the Barrow administration to assure his silence. Edmond Castro, a small time hustler but arguably one of the most corrupt UDP politicians of this current era, was rewarded with his own portfolio where he can continue to enrich himself to his heart’s content.
It is difficult to remember that the Barrow administration came to power on an anti-corruption platform, since corruption has now characterized all that administration’s terms in office. Prime Minister Dean Barrow continues to turn a blind eye to the corruption at every level of his government, even as the country continues to get a black eye from the region and the rest of the world. Mr. Barrow is an abject failure. So shall it be written in history.
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