Features — 16 May 2018
Burgos must rent upstairs apartments

Immediately I heard that the Belize City Council was going to address the silting eyesore at Yaabra Bridge, I thought they were being presented with an opportunity. I thought that while it was silted (and we were in dry weather), was the most cost effective time for them to put in a gate.

Before I go on, let me say this. I will never offer an opinion to an engineer about the design of a bridge over a river. But I will question an engineer about the siting of the bridge. I will never offer an opinion about the construction of a two-storey, and up, building. But I will respect my two cents about where they are putting it.

It is incredible that they cemented the sides of the main canals, East/West and Collet Canal, in Belize City (BC). I believe the bottoms of the canals were cemented too. When we buy materials our country doesn’t make, for examples cement and steel, we absolutely have to put them to best use. It wasn’t necessary in the canals.

A lot of gates are needed in BC. They can start with the two big canals. The gates, which don’t have to be leak proof, should be placed about fifty feet or so from where the canals meet the creek or sea, to allow for berthage. The canals should be narrowed down where the gates will be placed, so they don’t have to be too large. When the big rains come, the city should lock the gates and pump the excess water into the sea and creek. Drains that lead to the sea and creek have to be gated too.

People who know agriculture will tell you that BC would have made a great rice field. BC is flat, it is fertile, and it has a ready source of fresh water — the Haulover Creek. BC, if it was a rice field, might have rivaled the Yangtze delta.

To irrigate/drain a rice field, there are canals, with earth banks, called bunds. BC should be bunded, all around. In some areas BC has cement sea walls, but bunds made out of compacted mud will work just as well in most areas.

I have a direct concern about Belize City’s drainage because I have an aunt who used to rent two apartments there, and that part of her livelihood got wiped out when they started building cement streets.

In a story by Rowland Parks on page 45 of the April 27 Amandala, I read that the government had planned to gate the canals. Parks interviewed Councilor Michael Noralez, who said: “I remember just before the 2015 general elections, there was a big showcase that they [the UDP], were going to put in gates, but they did nothing.” The government should explain the lamping.

Ah, Councilor Noralez also said that Mr. Arsenio Burgos (I guess he’s an engineer) advised that they didn’t need to use pumps because they “could put in other structures that would work even better”; all they would have to do is “maintain the exits.” That’s what made me start wondering if Mr. Burgos is in the business of renting apartments, and his are on stilts.

Hope BTL doesn’t mess up again

I think you can ask BTL to keep your phone number out of the phone book, if you desire so. Most people don’t care for that. It is quite convenient to be able to go to the phone book and look up the number of people you want to call.

Naturally, obviously, Camalote numbers belong under Cayo Rural. Anyone with basic deducation skills would look there, when they find there is no Camalote listing in the book. We can’t take offense to not having a listing all our own, because we are few.

Someone, a former village councilor, told me that Camalote had become either the most populated village in the country, or very near to that. In terms of expanse, we are up there too. As the highway goes, Camalote is more than two miles long.

Ah, we are growing, but we are still a village. That’s why we pay low property taxes. There are some villages that are not really villages any more, but they love the status. It’s because of the low property taxes. It is my view that Belize’s tax structure is not exactly right. But the people at the top like it so.

There was a time when Camalote phone numbers went under Belmopan. We can’t complain about that. The villages in Belmopan surrounds melt into the capital. There was a time when Camalote numbers went along with Spanish Lookout. That wasn’t unnatural because we both used the same code.

Last year they stuck us into San Ignacio. And our area codes are not even close. We’re 822 and they’re 824. It may be that we were victimized because we didn’t question where they put us before.

Okay, if you want to give them an out, you can say that our area codes both start with 82. But someone who is looking for your phone number won’t necessarily know what your area code is. It would be so disappointing if a friend were trying to reach you, and they got stumped by the phone book. And you’d be downright angry if someone was trying to give you a little business and they can’t find your name.

Ah, the BTL phone books are not out yet. Hope those bohgaz don’t muck up again.

Disgruntled PUPeez have no where to go

We all know that the PUP da love. We don’t like that they love our money vault so much, but we can never condemn their heart. They are a party that will forgive and forget. You’ve heard the slogan, “Welcome to the Party”. It is not a sham. It is as real as Brad Pattico’s Da fu me an yu, and the Statue of Liberty’s “Give me your tired, your poor, Your huddled masses yearning to breathe free, The wretched refuse of your teeming shore. Send these, the homeless, tempest-tossed to me, I lift my lamp beside the golden door.”

I guess the UDP wouldn’t exist if dehn da mi love too. It wouldn’t make any sense. Every life must have purpose. The UDPeez purpose is to be mean. Make no mistake about the UDP and the love bizniz. They just don’t roll that way. Their style could be from living out in the cold so long. Every soul on this earth is heavily influenced by their environment. Of course there’s no excuse for coldness!

If a UDP gets disgruntled, the da love PUP will roll out the welcome mat and say, “Brother/Sister, come home, welcome to the party.” But if a PUP gets disgruntled, he/she might as well join a third party, or get out of politics.

Da UDP will pretend to love the disgruntled PUP. They will try because they know it’s good politics. Basic common sense dictates that they play along. But there’s just too much mean leopard in that beast. The disgruntled PUP will get the sense soon enough.

I heard that Joe Bradley was once a PUP. So, people will say, my argument doesn’t hold. But not so fast. You might have noticed that every day of the week, Monday to Friday, Joe Bradley defends every sin that comes out of the UDP party. I challenge you to find one instance when that gentleman said, well, the party might have tripped up slightly, or the party might have done this better. He dare not! They will pounce on him, and shred him to his very marrow. Not even Belikin beer will have use for him after the leopard springs.

Aha, some time ago I read in that newspaper run by that wikid Rudon, that Barrow was floating a balloon to bring Mark Espat into the UDP fold. Leadership might have brought home to Barrow the absolute folly of sneezing on talent. If PM were about such an initiative, he was making a tack into head wind, because, as we know, embracing a former PUP is not UDP modus operandi.

Ai, people really feel dat Barrow has an iron grip there. Leader and the rank-and-file parted ways. He drifted off, but the core leopard held to its vicious spots.

If you keep your ears clean of the wax, so you can hear things, sometimes, after reading things (the Belize Times), you hear things that make you say, hmm, I think I know where that came from. It didn’t go a good week after the Belize Times reported, when a UDP appointee got up in a public place and alluded to a reh-reh-reh that will happen, only over his dead body.

There are people who say that the PUP is a bigger party than the UDP. If that is so, one explanation for said might be a certain one way street. One says, welcome to the party, come home, while the other says, stay away, you are not welcome here.

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Deshawn Swasey

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