The biggest SNAFU was the lack of telecommunications to Caye Caulker
and San Pedro
towns on the islands from last Tuesday and Wednesday, running through
until today and still ongoing.
It turns out at the Belize Development Trust that we found the hard
way, that the BTL telecommunications monopoly have a superior
International quality long range cellular phone, that costs more money.
About $150 Bz or $75 USA and would provide communications easily from the
distressed island towns. The biggest bug in the whole emergency process
has been the lack of communications.
NEMO obviously did not know about the existance of these superiour
quality cellular phones. By rights BTL the monopoly should have donated
a dozen each, on last Tuesday to NEMO and shipped them out FREE GRATIS to
the Emergency Committees on both Caye Caulker and San Pedro. A dozen to
each island would have solved a couple thousand of localized problems
with communications and lost peoples. Even as I write, this is still true.
BTL is certainly at fault for this, even if they are an exploitive
profit company in the old colonial rip off mode. They could have sent
them out on the first boats and sold them, if money and profit was the
problem. That they did not even do this themselves for emergency use, is
even more scandalous conduct. NEMO officials were obviously swamped.
But they could have been told. Certainly somebody at BTL could have
informed the Emergency Hurricane net that we are operating.
The phones and communication capability are still there, sitting idle
in the boxes at BTL in the port town of Belize City. NEMO needs to get
somebody over there and light a fire under BTL managements butt.