For far too long we have been reporting land issue after land issue, but this week Plus TV’s very own Rise and Shine is taking it a step further; turning thought into action. For the first time since its initiation, Rise and Shine, with the assistance of a group of well known legal minds, will be providing free legal services to Belizean land owners.
The event will take place on Saturday, January 25th, at Plus TV’s studio, located at number 22 Bens Bluff. Rise and Shine’s host Louis Wade Jr. has more details
“We are going to be open from 9:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m. at Plus TV in Belmopan and we are asking people that when they come to bring as much documentation as they possibly can. Whatever wills or lease papers or letters from the Ministry or any kind of documentation that they have so that the lawyers can get an idea of the value and these other stuff. One of the things that we want to make known that it is being done by Rise and Shine, but we are not saying that everybody who comes will be on TV because we want to respect people’s privacy, the fact that some people do not want to take their issues public: they just need help. However, for those people who would like to tell their story, then the cameras will be available for interviews”.
Mr. Louis Wade Jr: “We believe that it will really give people an opportunity to get legal action, it will give us an idea of what’s on the ground to have some statistics as to what are the complaints that people are receiving, and most important, we are hoping that people will be able to get some sense of satisfaction by having their final documents and safety of their property in their own hands”.
Not only is this the first time that Rise and Shine has hosted an event like this, but also, as far as we know, the first time that such an event is held in the country itself. Louis Wade Jr. wished to invite people from all corners of Belize to take advantage of this opportunity.
Mr. Louis Wade Jr: “Let me take this opportunity to encourage people to come out on Saturday. It is the first time we are going to have that kind of event, and it is the first time people will have that kind of opportunity. It is very costly to get any type of legal assistance. We have received telephone calls, we read text messages, emails; if you read social media on Facebook, people are posting about their land issues. Here is an opportunity for residents of Belize to be proactive and not just to complain, but to get the kind of legal advice that they need that can help them to move forward with their land situation in a tangible way hopefully to the point of resolution”.
The Belize Grassroots Youth Empowerment Association (BIGYEA) has jumped on board the event. As you may recall, back in March of 2010, BIGYEA made themselves known when they put pressure on the Government to acquire 800 acres of privately owned land and to offer them to first time land owners who fit the criteria- mainly poor people who could not otherwise afford a piece of Land. This 800 acre land later went on to be named Harmonyville.
Now to the President of BIGYEA Nigel Petillo, the members of his association complain of Government pressure. For this reason, Petillo came by our studies to make a personal invitation to all the members of his association and the residents of Harmonyvile.
“What should be taking place on Saturday, we are inviting all Belizeans and I am here to invite the BGYEA members- the people fuh co’n and register you frustration on that day. those lawyers will be here to accommodate you as to where you are, how could you get the service you need from lands and in some cases where you need a letter drafetd up, you can get that drafted up”.
People who will be attending Saturdays event are being reminded to have with them their social security card and other relevant documents.