Prime Minister Dean Barrow has come under far from favourable scrutiny lately for his decision to employ and relocate what he referred to as ‘high-energy’ gang members. In fact, some of that scrutiny has come from our neck of the woods, Orange Walk, when it was discovered that 5 of the so-called high energy gang members had been placed in the San Lorenzo Housing Community.
Just days after that revelation, the San Lorenzo Neighbourhood Watch Committee held a special meeting at which the issue was discussed, and out of that meeting a petition was born and is being circulated in Orange Walk Town.
In that petition, which is addressed to the Prime Minister, the Committee reminds him that, and I quote – “Belize City has been under siege by criminals and gangs who commit senseless and brazen murders with apparent impunity. Police statistics show that of murders committed annually, a vast majority are committed in Belize City therefore we cannot risk our town and community earning the same disrepute.”
The Committee ends by asking the Prime Minister to reconsider his decision.
While the matter has been brought to the attention of Prime Minister Barrow, we understand that he has dismissed it as politicking by the Opposition People’s United Party. While that is not surprising, it is funny, considering that the UDP Mayor of Orange Walk Town Phillip de la Fuente and the Orange Walk East Area Representative Marcel Cardona were at the meeting and shared the concern by residents.
In addition, our newsroom has been told that Mayor de la Fuente’s input was also sought and received in the drafting of the petition which is being circulated.