The press also asked the Maya community's spokesperson comment on another issue brewing in Southern Belize.
News broke last week that the oil company, US Capital Energy, has applied to the Government of Belize to explore for oil in a part of the Toledo District that touches lands of 11 of the Mayan villages.
Back in 2012, it became very controversial when US Capital Energy got clearance to start oil exploration inside the Sarstoon Temash National Park. Their biggest adversary at the time was the NGO, SATIIM. SATIIM criticized the government for green lighting exploration in the wetlands of the Sarstoon Temash National Park, and the potential hazards to the aquatic environment of Southern Belize that the exploration could cause.
This time around, the Government had to get informed consent from the Mayan Villages, as a consequence of the very same CCJ judgment we told you about earlier. Today, the spokesperson for the Mayan communities completely disagreed with the "informed consent" that the Government got from the villages that could be affected by US Capital Energy's newest proposed production sharing agreement.
We'll get to that, but first, here's an interview that Attorney General Michael Peyrefitte granted to our colleagues at Krem News last week on the consultation process:
Here now is Cristina Coc's comments from today, discussing the consultation process that the Government conducted with the Mayan villages:
Despite Coc's disapproval, AG Michael Peyrefitte insisted to us this evening, that they were meaningful, and his reports from the Solicitor General and the Deputy Solicitor General are that 10 out of the 11 villages have given written consent for the project to move forward.
He tells us that US Capital Energy would still have to get the green light from the relevant government agencies, such as the Departments of the Environment and Forestry, for this new PSA.