The Orange Walk Town Council together with Orange Walkenos are tonight working tirelessly in an effort of bringing back our Christmas tree after it was destroyed in an unfortunate incident over the weekend.

On Saturday night news spread like wild fire that the Christmas tree that stood at the Central Park was engulfed in flames. Fingers are tonight pointing at two male individuals who may have intentionally caused the fire.

Screen_Shot_2016-12-12_at_8.10.30_PMMayor Kevin Bernard – Orange Walk Town Council

“What really is upsetting and this is what you are seeing on the TV the remanence that is left after the burning of that tree, what is upsetting is that I got firsthand information yesterday from somebody that was there in the park when this entire thing started; he mentioned to me that there were these two guys sitting down right there lighting these whistlers and intentionally because it was not intentionally it was not that somebody lit the whistlers and then left it and it then just blew away, intentionally threw the whistler into the tree and we all know that these things releases fire and so the first one was thrown into the tree and it did not probably see anything happen but did know that the tree was already about to catch fire on the other side and then they threw another whistler into the tree and so that is exactly what transpired and the tree went up in blaze because these things are very thin and they are made of plastic and I am here to say to your public and the general public that when we do these things these things are not for me or not for the members of the council these things are put out there so that the families can enjoy the children can enjoy, Christmas is a time for sharing and these two persons just came and stole the Christmas spirit from the people of Orange Walk Town in Central park and thankfully with the additional decoration and the beautification of the park that was done through your efforts and your team as well with the council you know the park looked very, very beautiful, last night I pass there again and people are still out there at the park because other sections of the park are still lit up.”

According to Mayor Bernard, although residents were witness to the incident and promptly called in the fire services, they were late to arrive.

Mayor Kevin Bernard – Orange Walk Town Council

“I am very disappointed with the fire department because when I got the call my response is have you called the Fire Station which is a few step or you could run there from the Fire Station to the Central Park and their responds was very delayed, I don’t know the reason why but I understand and I am giving encounter of what was told to me and I would want to hear from the fire Department as well because what was said to me when the fireman reached, the tree was almost engulfed in flames so they just went there with their hose and try to out of the small fire that was left and when the police officer that was out there came and asked the fireman what was it the response was just put electrical problem I mean how can we say such thing without even asking those people I understand that the person that was, admitted to a police officer that was out there that he did throw the whistler or firecracker into the tree and we know that is exactly what caused the fire of the tree.”

Mayor Bernard is also calling on the business community and residents at large to assist in efforts to rebuild the town’s Christmas tree which has become a large part of the tradition here in our town.

Mayor Kevin Bernard – Orange Walk Town Council

“Making that plea once more to our business community here in Orange Walk and to our residence and all who ae interested in trying to bring back our Christmas tree or bring back the spirit of Christmas at Central Park you can contact us also at the Town Council and get in contact with our receptionist or talk to our PR Officer, German Novelo or any person at the Council or drop off your donations at the Council or contact me personally and as well I asked those witnesses out there at the park to please let us to go the police station and put out that statement because we need justice to be served.”

Today when we contacted the Orange Walk Police Department we were informed that the two individuals who were in custody in connection with the incident have since been released as witnesses could not make a positive identification of either men. Furthermore we were informed that the report from the Orange Walk Fire Department has ruled the cause of fire as inconclusive as they were unable to determine if the fire was as a result of arson. Orange Walk Police are encouraging anyone who witnessed the incident and can positively identify the perpetrators to please contact the Orange Walk Police Department.

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