IN SUPPORT OF THE RULE OF LAW
Oceana expresses solidarity and support for its fellow conservation partner, the Sarstoon Temash Institute for Indigenous Management (SATIIM) in its ongoing efforts to secure respect for Maya customary land rights in the Southern Belize. It is indeed regrettable that the Maya leaders have been forced to apply for a post-judgment injunction to restrain the Government of Belize from renewing, extending and/or issuing an extension of US Capital Energy's permit; which is set to expire on April 30th 2014. Supreme Court Justice Honorable Michelle Arana's orders on April 3rd 2014 had directed that GOB obtain free, prior and informed consent from the indigenous Maya communities in respect to any contract, permit or license that falls within the Sarstoon Temash National Park. We call on the Government of Belize to reconsider the expressed course of action regarding US Capital’s permit. The investments already made to explore for oil and the importance of the potential revenues to be derived therefrom to the national economy cannot overshadow the rule of law, the customary land rights of the Maya of Southern Belize and indeed, the inherent right of all Belizeans to be consulted with and participate in meaningful processes to manage the country’s resources.
Oceana is the largest international advocacy group working solely to protect the world’s oceans. Oceana wins policy victories for the oceans using science-based campaigns. Since 2001, we have protected over 1.2 million square miles of ocean and innumerable sea turtles, sharks, dolphins and other sea creatures. More than 600,000 supporters have already joined Oceana. Global in scope, Oceana has offices in North, South and Central America and Europe. To learn more, please visit www.oceana.org.
For more information, please contact:
Janelle Chanona 62 Bella Vista; 3 ½ Philip S.W. Goldson Highway; P.O. 1500 | Belize City, Belize, Central America D 610-2358 | T 223-2790/2792 | F 223-2791 E firstname.lastname@example.org | W http://oceana.org