This sounds like pretty much the same issue to me. with the exception of not having to dereserve anything.whats your take on that?
To Whom It May Concern:
The San Pedro Business Association (SPBA) wishes to express its strong opposition to the proposed sale of public lands as laid out in the House of Representatives Motion dated 16th November 2007. This Motion deals with the "Sale of Certain Lands In North Ambergris Caye Motion, 2007."
1. Mentioned in the Motion are 22,000 acres of land in North Ambergris Caye of which 3000 acres are being proposed for sale to "Caribbean Developers (Belize) Limited."
2. It is not specified either in writing or in survey map form exactly what the boundaries of the said 3000 acres are.
3. Some weeks ago strong public and conservation group opposition to the proposed sale of Bacalar Chico Reserve Lands resulted in the Government of Belize making the correct decision for all Belizeans, namely making the promise that the said lands would not be sold to any private group.
Our concerns are as follows: The vague nature of the Motion and the fact that no boundaries have been specified means that the same Bacalar Chico Reserve Lands could still be sold or leased to Caribbean Developers (Belize) Limited. In fact, we at the SPBA are so suspicious that this may be the case that we are requesting the following information and assurances from the Government of Belize and Caribbean Developers (Belize) Limited:
1. That a clear survey map of the 22,000 acres mentioned in the Motion and the 3000 acres portion being proposed for sale be produced for our inspection and indeed for the inspection of the People of Belize.
2. That a clear commitment be made by the Government of Belize assuring the People of Belize, in writing, that no part of the Bacalar Chico Reserve will be sold or leased to any private entity for any reason whatsoever. This is protected lands and is a vital part of the natural heritage of Belize. As a country we cannot just "talk the talk" when it comes to conservation, we must be seen to "walk the walk."
3. That no attempt will be made by the Government of Belize to change the boundaries of the Bacalar Chico Reserve lands in order to facilitate the sale or lease of said lands.
If the 3000 acres proposed in the Motion is indeed the same section containing part of the Bacalar Chico Reserve this means that the Government of Belize is selling good lands with high elevation and beach frontage on Ambergris Caye for $4000BZE per acre. Not only is it outrageous that protected lands be sold or
leased to private entities, it is also economic madness. This land, if it were sold correctly and at market value, would fetch at least 50,000BZE per acre on the open market and very probably much more for the beach front sections.
Here is the truth: The argument made in the Motion "the offer made by the Company is considered to be the most attractive and favourable to Belize" is not only incorrect from the point of the preservation of our natural heritage, it is also a horrible deal for Belize and Belizeans from a financial perspective. $150,000,000.00 (One Hundred and Fifty Million) dollars would be closer to what these lands are worth in financial terms if they did not form part of a national reserve. Of course, most Belizeans understand that, because these are supposed to be protected lands, this property is actually priceless and that no sale can be justified.
We unreservedly oppose the Motion as written. We unreservedly oppose the sale or lease of the Bacalar Chico Reserve Lands or any part thereof. Your urgent attention in this matter is much appreciated.