A few days ago while in Los Angeles the Prime Minister met with the Belizean Diaspora living in L.A. During the meet the P.M came clean as he admitted that the Lands Department is another hot bed of corruption.”
Now this is nothing new for Belizeans, but coming from the P.M it confirms the allegations to anyone who was dubious. With scandal after scandal following this present administration certain measures have been set in place at the Lands Department including the rotation of a number of employees who it is believed were in the mix of the corruption. With these changes implemented, and more on the way, the P.M hopes to turn things around at the Lands Department.
Honorable Dean Barrow- Prime Minister of Belize
“The Ministry of Lands or the Lands Department has already taken some steps and about four, maybe six persons were moved out. They’ve been, there have been ongoing attempts to try to assist with processes, remember they had this land management system project funded from abroad and all that. The biggest problem, I hate to say it, the biggest problem, as I see it, is with individuals, I cited the example when I went to Santa Familia of somebody saying, “well, the land that I was working has now been given to others.” When I checked with the minister, the lands officer who had gone out to do a report certified that the land was physically free and clear, that there was no crops, no cultivation and that was an outright lie. What are we left to assume? He did that deliberately and no doubt for money. So there is that sort of a problem. Too many people complain that you get nothing done in the Lands Department unless you are prepared to pay. So I am hoping that the effort that’s being made and the fact that some people have been rotated out together with the systems on which there is ongoing work will help. I will also tell you that we are trying to get somebody to act as a kind of quality assurance person for the department and liaison with the public. We had spoken to one well known individual, that didn’t work. We’re speaking to another one currently and if we can swing that particular contract, that particular arrangement hopefully that would help as well.”