By Benjamin Flowers: Cultural advocacy organizations representing Belize’s East Indian population are calling on the Government of Belize to include them on the People’s Constitution Commission.
Today, the East Indian Council of Belize and the Corozal Organization of East Indian Cultural Heritage, issued a statement, saying that they are greatly concerned about being excluded from the commission, given the contributions that East Indians have made to the development of Belize.
“East Indians have made Belize their home for almost 150 years and have contributed significantly to the development of our nation, especially the Toledo and Corozal districts,” the organizations said. “Our contributions to the development of Belize include transportation, agriculture, education, business/commerce, finance, tourism/culture, and the military.”
They have called for the government, and singled out Minister of the Public Service, Constitutional and Political Reform, and Religious Affairs Henry Charles Usher, to ensure that the organizations, which represent a group that comprises about 3.8 percent of Belize’s population, are represented on the commission.
“The East Indian council of Belize and Corozal Organization of East Indian cultural heritage are legally registered organizations and not fringe groups seeking publicity. It is therefore imperative that we should be represented at the table of the People Constitution Commission as it seeks to amend the Constitution of Belize, our nation’s supreme law,” they added.
Recently the National Kriol Council issued a similar release, noting that those who identify as Kriol make up around 30 percent of Belize’s population, but were not given a seat on the commission.