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Senate Committee report still pending

Posted: Monday, February 18, 2019. 4:11 pm CST.

BBN Staff:  Since the end of the public inquiries into the  Auditor General’s Special Audit Report of the Immigration and Nationality Department 2011-2013, Belizeans have been waiting for the Senate Special Select Committee to finish its report and recommendations.

Breaking Belize News was reliably informed that a draft of the report is being reviewed by a team of attorneys, however, there is no set date for completion.

In a 2018 interview, committee president Also Salazar said that the committee will hand the finished report and recommendations over to the Senate for review and debate. He stressed that the committee can only make recommendations and that it will be up to the relevant authorities to take action.

The finished report will be the product of 42 public meetings held between 2016 and 2017 at the National Assembly, with a myriad of  witnesses being interviewed. Notably, Ministers of Government such as Anthony “Boots” Martinez, and Edmond Castro, joined officials such as former Police Commissioner Allen Whylie,  former Immigration Director Maria Marin, and former Financial Officer of the Immigration and Nationality Department, Teresita Castellanos.

Other witnesses included Alvarene Burgess, and Barton Middleton, both of which gave very controversial testimonies. The Special Select Committee was formed to investigate allegations of corruption cited in the Auditor General’s Special Audit Report of the Immigration and Nationality Department, following the Wong Hon Kim incident, in which a Korean national inside a Taiwanese detention facility ended up with a Belizean passport.

 

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