How Much Will Government Pay Assad Shoman?
Ambassador Assad Shoman continues to be a key figure in Belize’s move towards resolving the age-old territorial dispute with Guatemala at the International Court of Justice. He is one of two individuals representing government that have been named as agents to supervise the handling of Belize’s case before the world court. As such, the question of his compensation is once again being asked now that he is wearing a different hat. While the PM toyed with the idea of establishing an embassy in the Netherlands, government has been advised that it won’t be necessary. Instead, Ambassador Shoman will be working from an office in Belmopan and will only travel to the Hague when necessary. Here’s how PM Barrow explained Ambassador Shoman’s new role.
Prime Minister Dean Barrow
“He will be paid at the level of an ambassador. I’ve also written to the Governor General to ask that he be appointed a special envoy. Ambassador, how they call it, Extraordinaire Plenipotentiary and be made a special envoy to the prime minister, particularly on sovereignty matters and so we will pay him as we pay any other ambassador, except he will not be posted abroad. We thought maybe it would have been necessary to actually set up an embassy at the Hague, but we have taken advice and that’s not required. That would be additional costs that we can avoid, so Assad will work out of Belmopan. He will have to travel as much as is necessary and we will use our mission in Brussels as the sort of post office, as the address for service. Naturally, when Assad does have to go up to the Hague he will always, I imagine, stop in and if necessary take Ambassador Dylan Vernon with him for the purposes of ensuring that we are bang-on-form, in terms of what we need to do, but there’s likely to be a great deal of down time there’s nothing happening.”
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