In his column in last weekend?s issue of THE REPORTER, Meb Cutlack discussed Odinga Lumumba?s heritage and the symposium held in Lumumba?s memory on May 29 at the Holy Redeemer Parish Hall.
At the end of his column, Mr. Cutlack said that a person he referred to as a ?wise observer,? had suggested, with reference to the Guatemalan claim to Belize, that Belize should not continue the ?endless and quite useless talks? with Guatemala, but ?break off from the talks and seek an immediate defence pact with Mexico.? The wise observer said such a move would ?produce what Belize really needs ? but is unlikely to get otherwise ? a telephone call from President Bush to ?lay off? Belize and recognize our borders!?
In retrospect, our hopes where our national team?s matches with El Salvador were concerned may have been overly ambitious because of the yawning abyss between the attitude of Salvadoran leaders towards football, and the attitude of Belizean leadership towards the sport.
In 1969, El Salvador and Honduras went to war over football. The six-day war was halted under pressure from the Organization of American States and the United States. Internationally, the incident became known as the ?Football War.?
The two months following the Opposition UDP?s landslide victory over the ruling PUP in national municipal elections, have been somewhat puzzling. First, the UDP, instead of going into celebration mode, became somewhat meditative. Then the PUP decided to go into denial. Late last week and earlier this week, party politics began to become comprehensible again.
We found the news that Godwin Hulse?s vehicle had caught fire mysteriously while parked, and been badly damaged by fire (the vehicle is not insured against fire), to have been ominous. The police and the news media have not taken this news as seriously as we have in the editorial section of Amandala.
The David Fonseca crisis, which involves the mishandling of hundreds of thousands of Belize City Council dollars, represents the first big challenge to the new Zenaida Moya mayoralty.
It being the case that former Mayor, David, is the younger brother of Minister Ralph Fonseca, one of Belize?s richest men, it appears that the new Mayor, having inherited an indebted and cash-strapped City Hall, is toying with the idea that there are ways David could make good the missing money.
At this newspaper we have been pointing out for the last couple years that the present People?s United Party, where policy and philosophy are concerned, has very little in common with the foundation PUP of 1950. But the most important assignment of a political party is to gain power, and the PUP had been winning elections by huge margins from 1996 to 2003. The question of policy and philosophy continuity was swept under the rug. With the party having suffered its worst election defeat ever on March 1, however, and appearing to have been abandoned by its base constituencies, the question of the present substance and nature of the PUP becomes an important one.
A couple weeks ago we wrote an editorial about what would begin to happen inside the ruling People?s United Party on March 2. We did not anticipate such a blowout by the Opposition United Democratic Party as 9-0, but we were sure the UDP would win a majority of the nine municipalities at stake on March 1.
The UDP?s celebration may be tempered at the highest levels by the fact that the more important clash is still ahead of them. The elements for success in the general elections, scheduled for 2008, are in place for the Opposition, but the PUP is a formidable party and will seek to re-organize with the greatest of urgency.
One of the things that makes us enthusiastic about the Vision Inspired by the People (VIP) party running in next Wednesday?s municipal elections in Belmopan, is the fact that there are no lawyers in VIP?s leadership. There will come a time when VIP needs lawyers. All of us do at some point in our lives. But the lawyers in Belize have subverted the two-party parliamentary system at the very highest levels.