GOB appointed Mayan Commission speaks on its responsibilities

This morning in Belize City, the government appointed Mayan commission met with the press to brief them on the scope of its works as the Mayan commission. The commission was appointed on Tuesday and has been meeting since then.  Sitting on the commission are formervlcsnap-2016-01-18-12h29m08s500 vlcsnap-2016-01-18-12h28m51s995government  minister Lisel Alamilla, as chairperson of the commission, Noreen Fairweather as commissioner, Randall K. Sheppard as Commissioner, and  E. Anthony Ross QC as expert consultant . The primary responsibility of the Commission is to implement the Consent Order of the Caribbean Court of Justice, which requires Government to adopt affirmative measures to identify and protect the rights arising from Maya customary land tenure.  Today, chair of the commission, Lisel ALamilla, spoke about what  government has done so far E. Anthony Ross QC,– Expert Consultant on the commission is admitted to the Bars of Nova Scotia and Ontario, Canada, and of St. Kitts-Nevis, BVI and Antigua and is a member of the Chartered Institute of Arbitrators.  He was involved in litigation and negotiation of Aboriginal law issues since the late 1970’s. Today, he discussed the intricacies of the way forward in aligning the court’s decision with the constitution and the vlcsnap-2016-01-18-12h28m46s822demands of the Maya people. Commissioner Noreen Fairweather is an independent consultant who has over 30 years’ experience in land management and served as Commissioner of Land and Surveys for several years. We asked Fairweather, with her years of experience in land management, to describe the current status of the lands in the Toledo district.  We also asked the commission for a timeline or at least to give an idea of what they expect to complete by the end of 2016  The commission will be headquartered in Punta Gorda and will have a supporting staff. By the end of the month, the commission expects to submit its first report to the Caribbean Court of Justice as to where they are.

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