While allegations of corruptions have rocked the Government of Belize, the Government has assured the country that they are working to solve the problems-to clean up their act. But according to Vision Inspired by the People, well meant words are not enough. The VIP has launched an anti-corruption campaign which is petitioning the Government to sign the United Nations Convention Against Corruption (UNCAC)- a legally binding international anti-corruption contract obliging the country to implement the necessary measures of anti-corruption affecting their laws, institutions and practices. VIP’s Public Relations Officer Boby Lopez was on Rise and Shine Thursday morning. According to Lopez it is important to let the world know that, while both the PUP and UDP governments have rejected this anti-corruption contract in the past, the people of Belize are not in conjunction with their position.
“I think it is important for Belizeans to show the world community that while our government has been coerced as one that tolerates corruption because we refuse to sign this convention, by extension, then we are extending that black eye. I think it’s important that we now step out and tell the world, “listen, we want our government to sign on; we want to be part of the celebration on International Anti-corruption Day when countries around the world are celebrating their victories, their successes as they root out corruption. Again, I’ve been on this show when I said, look at Barbados. Out of 183 countries of the United Nations or that Transparency International has in their corruption index, Barbados climbs the ladder every year and is now at 16th least corrupt in the world, the 2ndth less corrupt in the Western Hemisphere after Canada and the No.1 least corrupt in the Caribbean…and where is Belize? We are not even in the list!”
Robert Lopez explained that the PUP, in their days of reign, had 5 years to sign on to this convention but didn’t; the UDP also has had 5 years to sign. According to Mr Lopez, had any of those parties signed the convention, these latest scandals would have undergone full investigation.
Mr. Robert Lopez: “Had we signed this convention before in this particular instance where the corrupt head has emerged in the Immigration Department, how something could have already been in place and would have carried out the investigation we are all calling for. This is Article 36, and it says, “Each state-party shall, in accordance with its fundamental principles of its legal system, ensure the existence of a body or bodies, specialized in combating corruption through law enforcement. Such body or bodies shall be granted the necessary independence in accordance with the fundamental principles of the legal system of the same to be able to carry out a full investigation”.
On December 9th, on International Day of Anti-Corruption, this people movement spear headed by the VIP, will make the first presentation of the signatures. Host of Rise and Shine Louis Wade Jr. was the first one to sign the petition to “Relieve Belize of Corruption”
Mr. Robert Lopez: “Join this movement; join this petition drive. Take a copy home, get it signed and then mail it to us. On December 9th, we intend to make the first presentation. Send a copy to the Governor General; send a copy to the Prime Minister and a copy will be sent to the Secretary General of the United Nations. The petition will continue from north to south, east to west”.
Mr. Louis Wade- Director of PLUS TV: “I’m putting my name here, total in agreement, and we trust that people from across the nation will sign and I want to thank Vision Inspired by the People for the opportunity to be the first to sign this petition that is going to ask and demand of our government that they sign the United Nations Convention Against Corruption”.
If you wish to be a part of this anti-corruption campaign you can sign the petition with any VIP representative. You can also contact Bobby Lopez at 602-5885 or at firstname.lastname@example.org to get an electronic copy of the petition. Also visit change.org to sign the petition electronically.