For the two days of budget debating that took place last week Thursday and Friday in Belmopan, we noted that only 30 members of the House of Representatives showed up. The missing member is of course no other than Orange Walk North politician Gaspar Vega, who has developed a truant style ever since falling out of grace with his own party and resigning from Cabinet in October 2016.

Vega missed most House Sittings last year, and so far has not shown up this year, not even for the all-important budget debate. But that doesn’t mean his name didn’t come up. Caribbean Shores’ area representative Hon. Kareem Musa raised concerns that the Government still owes $70 million in land compensations in instances including where the deals are corrupt and illegal such as the $800,000 that were paid to Andre Vega and Sharon Pitts.

KareemHonorable Kareem Musa - Caribbean Shores representative

“This Barrow-gant budget will continue to dish out tens of millions of tax payers dollars on land acquisitions based on a fraudulent double title; you familiar with this scheme that they were playing when they issue two title over a piece of land and then they would take back one of the title and then they would pay you big, big money you remember that scheme because it still happening. This scheme was develop and executed by the former minister of lands and in that scheme Andre got four hundred thousand dollars and madam speaker that is only the tip of the iceberg, some 70 million dollars has still not been audited and accounted for, the sad truth madam speaker, is that if your name is not Vega or the connected few in the UDP then you will remain landless.”

As the rules of Parliament dictate members can be absent once excused by the Speaker of the House. Has Vega been absent with a valid excuse or is his absence a boycott and signs of his continued strained relations with the UDP…we may just never know.

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