Posted: Friday, April 12, 2019. 3:28 pm CST.
By Aaron Humes:While voicing some criticism of how the Government has handled Belize-Guatemala relations and the current referendum campaign, former Prime Minister Said Musa maintains he will vote, and encourage others to vote, yes to any upcoming referendum to agree to settle the unfounded Guatemalan claim at the International Court of Justice (ICJ).
Musa, a former Foreign Minister, took some credit for persuading then-Prime Minister George Price to agree to have the claim settled in The Hague shortly after Belize gained Independence. He lamented the close calls in settling the claim, including after former Guatemalan president Jorge Serrano’s recognition of Belize in 1991, which still stands.
Musa says the current Ministry of Foreign Affairs has an “abysmal” record in confronting Guatemalan aggression, and something needs to be done about the P.U.P.’s many demands.
More importantly, he says, more should have been done to properly educate Belizeans and keep this most important national issue from becoming “a political football.”
But in the end, he said, “I must remain true to my self and convictions, I may not be pleased with the botched, bungled way the government has handled the process… I am convinced after years of being engaged with this issue, reviewing the matter and looking at past and current cases, Belize has a very strong case to protect and preserve our territory intact, Guatemala’s case is unfounded and without merit, and if the people vote yes and we go to the ICJ, the parties agree under article 5 that they must accept the decision of the court, and three months from the decision, the future bipartisan commission will mark the boundary, and it will run from Gracias a Dios in the South to Garbutt’s Falls, and then a straight line to where it hits the Mexican frontier.”
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