GOB censors public officers from speaking publicly about Guatemala/ Belize issue

The Ministry of Education has circulated a memo to public officers, in essence censoring them from speaking publicly about the Belize Guatemala issue. The MEMO, leaked to PlusTV this evening, is titled “Public Officers & the Media –Belize/Guatemala Situation” The memo reads,

In an effort to support the Government of Belize with the de-escalation of the current Belize/Guatemala situation, the Ministry of Education, Youth, Sport & Culture takes this opportunity to remind and ask all officers to refrain from speaking with the media on this matter”.vlcsnap-2016-05-12-12h36m09s15

The memo sites regulation 54 (3) to (6) of the Belize Constitution (Public Service) Regulations 2014 which reads as follows;

“(3) A public Officer whether on duty or on leave shall not allow himself to be interviewed on matter affecting the defense or military resources of Belize. (4) A Public Officer shall secure prior clearance from the Chief Executive Officer or head of department to make Statements to the Press regarding Public Policy.  (5) A Public Officer shall not respond to questions of Public Policy in a manner that could reasonably be construed as criticism of government and which may call into question his ability to impartially implement, administer or advise on Government Policy. (6) Where a Public Officer is called upon to respond to the media or participate in interviews on Public Policy, he shall provide only factual information for explanation and clarification.

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