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Seven employees from Lands department are abruptly ‘no longer employed’

Posted: Saturday, June 2, 2018. 5:00 p.m. CST.

By BBN Staff: On Friday, June 1st 2018, the Ministry of Natural Resources issued a release informing the public that seven (7) officers are “no longer employees of the Ministry” and hence “are not authorized to conduct business on the Ministry’s behalf”.

The release did not include any reason for, or details regarding, the abrupt decision.

Amin Bobadilla, who was stationed at the Ministry’s headquarters in Belmopan, is the most senior officer who is ‘no longer employed’. He was serving as the National Estate Officer in Lands Department.

At least five (5) of the other officers who are no longer employed are originally from the Orange Walk district.  Three (3) of the officers were posted at the lands offices in the districts. Evrit Matute was working in the Cayo Office, Noel Centeno was stationed in the Corozal office and Gustavo Gongora was assigned to the Belize district office.

According to the release, the other officers who are ‘no longer employees’ are Miguel Lopez, Manolo Toledano and Marla Longsworth.

In cases where public officers are either resigning or being terminated, the Ministry of the Public Service is normally involved. Arrangements for recognizing years of service and obtaining staff benefits is an integral part of the decision but no such details were provided in the release.

In 2013, Prime Minister Dean Barrow referred to Belize’s Lands department as a ‘hot bed of corruption’ while attending a town hall meeting with the Belizean diaspora in Los Angeles, California.

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