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Announcement from the Cabinet

Belmopan. September 13, 2016. Cabinet is prepared to support a Senate Select Committee rather than a bi-cameral Joint Select Committee inquiry into the Auditor-General’s Immigration Special Report.

Cabinet has taken this position in view of the reconsideration by the Belize Chamber of Commerce and by the Belize Council of Churches, both of whom were originally in favour of going the bi-cameral route. Cabinet is also persuaded by the fact that a seemingly substantial portion of the public apparently prefers the Senate to conduct the hearings, and by the further fact that the ultimate objective of holding such hearings will be served by either of the two routes on the table. There is thus no need for Cabinet to insist on its own preference for the bi-cameral method. Cabinet also agrees that one of the Social Partner Senators should chair the Senate Select Committee. Cabinet does insist, however, that the composition of the Committee reflect the balance of power in the Chamber, as is mandated by Standing Orders.

Accordingly, Cabinet supports a proposal from the Council of Churches and the Belize Association of Evangelical Christians that the Special Senate Select Committee be made up of the three Social Partners, one from the Opposition and three from Government. The Committee would be chaired by one of the Social Partners.