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Mar 5, 2015

U.D.P. Sweeps 2015 Municipal Elections: Darrell Bradley Re-elected to City Hall

The People’s United Party suffered a most humiliating defeat in Wednesday’s municipal elections with the United Democratic Party capturing all municipalities, except the Orange Walk Town Council. Support for the P.U.P. eroded significantly and of the three town councils, it only retained one. Soon after counting began, it became clear that a red wave was rolling across the country. Tonight, we start our election reporting in Belize City, where there was an impressive and expected victory for Mayor Darrell Bradley and his team. Polls opened at seven in the morning and by then the U.D.P. had its machinery in full gear. Here is a report.

 

The Decision 2015 coverage for Belize City started in our studio where the Channel Five and Love FM pundits would receive reports from across the largest population.  Campaign tents were set across the one hundred feet line. Temporary workers wore their color and engaged voters on foot and those trying to drive through the traffic.  The P.U.P. and U.D.P. hoped that  their organizations would be able to mobilize most of the south side’s twenty-eight thousand eight hundred and twenty-seven voters and the thirteen thousand seven hundred and nineteen voters on north side. U.D.P.’s Doug Singh was sure of his party’s engagement process.

 

Doug Singh

Doug Singh, U.D.P.

“You have to engage people who will be doing the pickup and drop off. You have to engage the people who will help you work during the daytime so it’s not an overnight exercise.”

 

Reporter

“Is there any particular area where you plan to be focusing on today?”

 

Darrell Bradley, Incumbent Mayor, Belize City

“We were very active in Caribbean Shores in terms of ensuring that our tents and so were opened very early. Our people were out at six o’clock this morning so that when polls open at seven, we could go into the polling stations.”

 

In the studio the pundits crunched numbers upon the hour, every hour and in Lake Independence both P.U.P. and U.D.P. area representatives provided strong support for their municipal slate.

 

Mark King

Mark King, Lake I Area Rep.

“We have four hundred strong on the ground this morning. He thought that we bought all the votes, but that is not so. We have a large committee which is voluntary and of course we hire our workers. All who say hiring workers and paying for a vote is two different things. Hiring workers is legal, paying for a vote is illegal as far as I know. Today our machinery is very strong; we are sure we are winning this box and we will win it big. As to the opposition, we don’t see that they have the resources by way of capacity.”

 

Cordel Hyde

Cordel Hyde, P.U.P. Lake I Standard Bearer

“I am just putting in my pound to get my party a chance to get back to city hall.”

 

Reporter

“Okay, so how important is it for you to be on the ground, for you to bring out your supporters to vote for the P.U.P. slate?”

 

Cordel Hyde

“Well that’s what I’ve learned in politics over the many years I’ve been in politics. If there is an election, you step forward and try to secure a victory for your party.”

 

Dylan Reneau

Reporter

“I’ve seen you argue with both P.U.P. and U.D.P. area representatives. Can you say what those discussions were about?”

 

Dylan Reneau, Elections Clerk, Belize City

“I wouldn’t call it argue, Jose, I was just asking them to follow the rules that were outlined to them by the Returning Officer and I am just trying to keep the peace because I know that this is one of those hot areas. And so, if I can set the tone from early in the morning, I’m expecting tonight to be calm.”

 

The day progressed and the voters trickled into the stations.  Past midday, two of the mayoral candidates found time for a handshake and a hug.

 

Ernesto Torres

Ernesto Torres, Mayoral Candidate, Belize City

“I don’t have a party none at all. I am a one man movement, but let me tell you I have the support of the voters. I could feel it, I could sense it. When people wave at me, when people throwing their thumbs, when people stopping their vehicles and saying I have cast my vote in your favor.”

 

With two hours left to vote, the councilors were all still very hopeful.

 

Michael Novelo, P.U.P. Councilor Candidate

“I think they have us out two to one in shirt, but it will show at the numbers what is really transpiring today. We have hundreds of supporters out here in red that supports the P.U.P.”

 

Yolanda Schakron

Yolanda Schakron, P.U.P. Mayoral Candidate

“The campaigners, the area representatives have been side by side with us, especially our party leader.”

 

Reporter

“And he is side by side with you; the Leader of the Opposition, Mister Francis Fonseca. How has it been going? Have you been looking at the numbers in terms of what your people and what has been coming out from the officials?”

 

Francis Fonseca

Francis Fonseca, P.U.P. Leader

“Oh yeah. It’s been a good day so far a long way before six p.m., but we feel very good.  Everything is encouraging. Our people are coming out slowly, but coming out across the city. Here in Freetown, we started out brightly, lot of energy, a lot of enthusiasm. There was a sea of blue in the line at seven o’clock this morning and it slowed down a bit—as is usually the case—and then it picked up a little more later in the morning and we expect a lot more people to come out this afternoon. And that’s what I’m hearing all across the country quite frankly. All across the country, our people are energized, working hard. So we feel optimistic, we feel very positive about today.”

 

At five p.m. the Returning Officer gave another update.

 

Hugo Miranda, Returning Officer, Belize City

“This represents a total of forty-one point six percent of the total people who should be voting for the Belize City municipal elections. And to give you that in numbers, that’s seventeen thousand two hundred and nineteen voters out of forty-two thousand five hundred and forty.”

 

But Freetown is the P.U.P. stronghold and the area that is represented by the Leader of the Opposition Francis Fonseca and voting was largely in favor of the U.D.P. mayor even in Freetown.

 

Jose Sanchez

“Karen and I are coming to you from the ITVET, formerly the Belize Technical College, where the last box is being counted at this moment. We have some of the figures that we’ve gotten from inside, but it is clearly in the favor of Mayor Darrell Bradley.”

 

And then it was official.

 

Hugo Miranda

“Mr. Darrell Bradley, the current, the past mayor received eleven thousand eight hundred and thirty-three votes. Hyacinth Latchman Cuellar received eleven thousand six hundred and fifty-four votes; Mister Jason Edwards received eleven thousand five hundred and thirty-one votes; Alifa Elrington received eleven thousand four-twenty-one votes; Doctor Alain Gonzalez received eleven thousand seven hundred and ninety-nine votes. Dion Leslie received eleven thousand eight hundred and sixty-four votes. Mister Bernard Pitts Junior received eleven thousand five hundred and ninety-two votes. Mister Dean Samuels received eleven thousand six hundred and sixty-three votes. Kevin Vincent Singh received eleven thousand six hundred and seventy-five votes. Mister Michael Theus received eleven thousand six hundred and twenty-eight votes. Msiter Phillip Willoughby received twelve thousand nine hundred and five votes. Under the P.U.P., Madam Yolanda Schakron received six thousand seven hundred and thirty-nine votes. Therefore, the new mayor and councilors is being formed by the United Democratic Party.  Mister Torres, the independent candidate, he received two hundred and ninety-five votes and that is the official results for the Belize City Council elections.”

 

Darrell Bradley

“We from the beginning had expected victory. We were planning in terms of our organization to ensure that we were able to bring out as much of the voters as possible. The Election Day started slowly, but we managed to inch up to a very respectable voter turnout and we’re very pleased with the outcome. I empathize with some of the candidates who were not successful. I want to give a shout out and accolade to Miss Schakron and to her political party. I had said in the morning that I think there was a great deal of civility in this campaign and in today. You saw that in all areas, when you looked at lampposts, you saw a P.U.P. banner and a U.D.P. banner—everybody respecting he divisions in terms of everything. You saw tents—P.U.P. tents and U.D.P. tents—and everybody engaging civilly and I thought that was something that was very good and so much respect has to go to the People’s United Party, much respect has to go to their candidates. I was able to engage Mister Torres in several discussions throughout the day. I think he is someone that has ran before and ran again today and again respect is due to people who put themselves up for political office. Even though we are victorious at this present moment, we would hope that the entire city benefits from the quality of leadership in the city and we go into this next term with a sense of humility and a great gratitude that members of the public has trusted us with another three years in office.”

 

The councilor candidates for the U.D.P. received votes that ranged from eleven thousand four hundred to twelve thousand nine hundred and the P.U.P. councilor candidates received votes that ranged from seven thousand four hundred to eight thousand one hundred. The city had the lowest voter turnout of forty-one point six percent. Reporting for News Five, Jose Sanchez.

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4 Responses for “U.D.P. Sweeps 2015 Municipal Elections: Darrell Bradley Re-elected to City Hall”

  1. De says:

    Well I saw this disaster coming from a mile away. Really, Francis, this was the best candidate you could have put there to run against Darrell. The Sara Palin Effect. I guess she can see Guatemala from her back porch, as well.

  2. Al Rich says:

    I am astonished at how ignorant Belize people are when it comes to decipher what is best for their future. How can you continue to support a government who keeps you in poverty, fail to better the country, does nothing to curb crime. Where is the common sense.

  3. shen says:

    This is not the worst election ever because regarding of the defeat that the PUP got they still stand strong and they will win the upcoming general election. Dean i know u are not that happy with the results because look at the percentage that came out to vote. For those people who sold there vote, just hope that the $50 or $150 you got for feed you for the next 3 years and for those who elected Nick Sigh in San Ignacio/Santa Elena you will know who he really is. A man whom is not even a born belizeans but cheats in paying his income tax. Investigate him very well and you will know who he really is. If Francis should resign as party leader, Musa should be re-elected as Party Leader. Musa you are the best match for DEAN MEAN BARROW, remember is surname says it all. That is what he is doing borrowing and putting us into more debts.

  4. Belizean Pride says:

    De
    I agree with you she was not a good aspirant for mayor, worst the record she has on her previous election shot. We want Belizeans not people that only want the post but not the heart of serving our nation. Her way of speaking throw her off track, her promises she made was too hard to believe and we expected more from this party. I ain’t no political affiliate but like to see the things or agendas each one brings to see if they really intend to try but their promises to work.

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