In yesterday’s coverage of the Senate hearing, we reported on the Senate Select Committee’s efforts to find out how a picture of South Korean national Kim Won Hong, who was sitting at a Taiwan Detention Center at the time, could have gotten on a passport processed in Belize.
Their questions to I.T. Manager at the Immigration Department Rodolfo Bol Jr., just like their questions to other Immigration Officers, have yielded few results. The man who would be able to provide many answers, however, is former Immigration Minister and former UDP Cayo North East Area Representative Elvin Penner.
Penner has claimed that he walked the man he knew as Kim Won Hong to the Immigration Department to apply for his passport. Penner had also assisted him to obtain his nationality papers.
The former UDP politician’s appearance before the Senate Select Committee has been highly anticipated and today we can report that he is expected at the next hearing on Wednesday, April 10th.
Today, Committee member Senator Eamon Courtenay spoke on next week’s hearing, saying he hopes the Former UDP Minister goes ready to give answers.
Senator Eamon Courtenay – Special Senate Select Committee Member
“I have not spoken to Mr. Penner, I understand that quite some time he has volunteered the persons who he wants to come before the Senate Committee and that he is anxious to come and tell his side of his story. I think Mr., Penner is going to be an important witness and he is not going to be called upon to explain his role in the Wong Hong Kim matter but his role as an Area Representative, his role as a minister with responsibility for Immigration, his role for halting away the boxes with in my view illegal issuance of Nationality to many, many persons who still remain on the register, we have pictures of him doing it along with his cohorts so it seems to me that Mr. Penner will be there for quite a while has a lot to explain and I am happy to hear that he is coming with full desire to speak frankly, openly and truthfully so that we can really get to the bottom of this so that we can find out how much money did Wong Hong Kim paid, we can find out the true role of people like Mr. Eric Chan in this, so he will have a lot to say so as the chairman of the committee said under the pain of perjury he will have many, many questions and answers and I hope he is ready.”
Normally, the Senate hearing lasts for four hours with a lunch break in between. Something tells us however that Penner’s testimony could stretch next week’s hearing beyond its usual time. We will be there and provide a full report on Wednesday’s newscast.