Priority number one for this present administration is to rebuild the economy; anything else is uncivilized. What I believe we could all agree upon is that the country of Belize is in a cruel financial crunch. Tying the government’s hands and restricting their ability to provide the necessary goods and services is counterproductive. This will only cause more suffering to the people. As a Christian society we also should seek guidance from the Bible in these perilous times. Ecclesiastes 3 speaks about timing. There is a time for everything under the sun. A time to tear down and a time to build up. This is absolutely the wrong time to be tearing down each other. It is a ridiculous notion to insinuate that the demise of our public finances is a result of this present administration. There is no government on the face of this earth that is perfect, and to want to hold a government accountable after just six months in office is absurd. As with everything else, timing is crucial.
This administration was not elected to just appease the unions. Their responsibility is extended to every Belizean. Whilst this small fraction of the population continues to receive their salary, thousands of us have lost our wages for an entire year and counting. We cannot continue to wait because you all cannot accept a 10% salary cut. Good governance is important, but is secondary compared to this economic depression we are facing right now. This time around, the unions have misstepped. I could never support their industrial action. It is not warranted. The more this crisis with the union and government continues, the more we can see the political motivation behind their action. It appears that the strike action was their ultimate goal from the initial stage.
So we should just damn our children, who have been out of the classroom for over a year. We all know that some of our best experiences in life are at school, but we continue to deprive our innocent children of that opportunity. Damn the poorest of the poor. They should not have any stake or desire for a better life in this country. Damn the unemployed and entrepreneurs; they have chosen the wrong choice in life and now they should suffer for it. Damn the productive sector — our farmers and fishermen and the working class; their efforts don’t contribute anything to our growth as a nation. It is totally disingenuous and wrong to hold us ransom for a situation that is no fault of ours. The government needs to be given the chance to right this ship. If you could not hold the last administration accountable for the atrocities they have caused this country during 12 years in good times, then how can you fathom holding a new administration accountable in the worst of times during a pandemic?
The time now is for us to hold hands and rebuild Belize. It’s time to get back to work. I completely disagree with the action of these unions. I appeal to all involved to get back to the negotiating table and find common ground. Life rough, and it will only get worst with a strike. One year ago, the coronavirus pandemic shut us down; we cannot afford another shutdown. If you are a Belizean patriot, please stand up. United we stand; divided we fall.
A J Alvarez