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COLA will privately prosecute Elvin Penner

COLA representatives

Posted: Thursday, February 27, 2014. 10:36 am CST.

COLA representatives

COLA representatives

AARON HUMES Reporting: Citizens Organized for Liberty through Action (COLA) is taking Elvin Penner to court tomorrow in Belmopan.

Hon. Elvin Penner (Cayo Northeast Representative)

Hon. Elvin Penner
(Cayo Northeast Representative)

Following the suggestion of Prime Minister Dean Barrow, the organization intends to file two charges against the ex-Minister of State in Belmopan for violations of the Belizean Nationality and Passport Acts.

COLA President Giovanni Brackett they must act immediately otherwise the six-month statute of limitation will arrive rather quickly.

The two charges are falsely vouching for the fitness of Kim to be granted a passport and making a false statement in a material particular that he knew Kim personally at the time he made out his nationality certificate.

Court filing

Court filing

COLA is asking attorneys interested in assisting their case to come forward, but says that come what may, on Friday morning at 10 o’clock in Belmopan Penner will face charges.

Brackett says the issue is tied to the fate of three officers of the Immigration Department who await the decision of the Public Services Commission on their continued employment.

The organization offered little details on how strong and tight its case was, and where it intended to gather the evidence it needs for a successful prosecution, preferring to insist that time was running out and it wished to pursue all avenues and means of bringing Penner to heel.

The Honorable the Prime Minister, Mr. Dean Barrow, responded to today’s announcement by Citizens Organized for Liberty through Action that it was seeking private prosecution of Elvin Penner.

Prime Minister Barrow welcomed the organization’s decision although when we asked him if the resources of the State and in particular the files at the Immigration Department would be made available as public documents, perhaps under the Freedom of Information Act, he appeared to suggest that the personal information contained in those documents may be private.

Ultimately, he conceded that COLA could apply under that Act for any information it wants.

He pointed out that the UDP has distanced itself from Penner, who will not be invited to run again in the Cayo Northeast division he now represents, although he still faces possible recall if the PUP’s challenge in the courts is successful.


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