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Aug 10, 2015

Walter Garbutt is U.D.P. Standard Bearer in Stann Creek West

Walter Garbutt

Walter Garbutt is the new U.D.P. standard bearer for the Stann Creek West division. On Sunday, the United Democratic Party held its last convention in the southern constituency to elect a replacement for Melvin Hulse, the disgraced former U.D.P. standard bearer. Hulse, who had also served as minister under the U.D.P. in a previous administration, resigned a few days after a tape was leaked where he was bad-mouthing the Prime Minister and talking about monies allegedly paid to two former P.U.P. Ministers. He later apologized but quickly stepped down to allow time to mend his relationship with the PM. Well, it was no surprise when the U.D.P. fielded three candidates, who many claimed were solid candidates, including a career educator and the labour commissioner. On Sunday, the convention polls opened at nine at the Independence Primary School in Independence Village and closed at five in the evening. At the end of the counting, Walter Garbutt emerged victorious and coming in at a close second was Nathan Young. Today, News Five spoke via phone with U.D.P. Chairman Alberto August who said they had a record-breaking turn-out; a first in the history of the Stann Creek West constituency.

 

On the Phone: Alberto August, Chairman, U.D.P.

“When the results were announced, we had the victorious candidate, former teacher and educator Mr Walter Garbutt receiving one thousand five hundred and fifty-four votes, followed by Nathan Young receiving one thousand two hundred and nine votes and Ivan Williams receiving three hundred and eighty-two votes. There were eighteen rejected ballots during the counting process.”

 

Walter Garbutt

Andrea Polanco

“Mr. August, as the Chairman of the party, are you satisfied with the turn-out yesterday?”

 

On the Phone: Alberto August

“We are very satisfied with the turnout. In fact, this is the biggest; this is the biggest turnout for any political party in a convention that constituency, over three thousand voters and the last time we had a convention there was in March 2014 with twenty one hundred and on this occasion we had one thousand more people coming out to cast their votes.”

 

Andrea Polanco

“What would you attribute that record turn-out to?”

 

On the Phone: Alberto August

“Well, the party presented three viable, three excellent candidates. Unfortunately, only one could have emerged victorious but, I think that was the major driving force that we had. We had three good candidates and they went out there in the short period of five, six weeks and they were able to bring out these people. And of course, as you look around the Belizean voters, the Belizean people are fully satisfied and are endorsing the undertakings of the U.D.P. Government.”

 

Andrea Polanco

“How confident is the U.D.P. about Mr. Garbutt going up against Mr. Rodwell Ferguson who is- you can say- a seasoned politician in Stann Creek West and Mr. Garbutt is fairly new to the political scene?”

 

On the Phone: Alberto August

“Yes, but the mind-set of the people has shifted. While you might be seasoned, you might be seasoned without delivering. The people are confident that Mr Garbutt will be delivering and brining development.”

 

Andrea Polanco

“What do you think that Mr. Garbutt brings that the Stann Creek West needs?”

 

On the Phone: Alberto August

“Mr. Garbutt has over three decades or four decades as an educator in the district and is well known in the area. In terms of integrity, in terms of hard work, that is the difference that Mr Garbutt brings to the campaign and his candidacy there in the Stann Creek West Constituency.”

 

Andrea Polanco

“Now, I must ask, I know that Mr. Nathan Young was being endorsed, supported, and recommended by former Standard Bearer Mr. Melvin Hulse. Now, how does the party move forward- is it as a united front now?”

 

On the Phone: Alberto August

“Well, you know it’s basically; the political parties tend to stay away from conventions because it divides the people in the constituency. But this one, this one, was a unique one there in the Stann Creek West Constituency. All three candidates are seasoned people, excellent candidates and all three of them stayed around for them entire process- during the polling, counting and the announcement of the results. In terms of the healing process, there is not much wounds caused by this convention.”

 

Andrea Polanco

“The U.D.P. expects to deliver Stann Creek West for the next General Elections?”

 

On the Phone: Alberto August

“There is absolutely no doubt about that, that when the next general elections are called that Mr. Walter Garbutt will be the next area representative for the Stann Creek West Constituency.”

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Viewers please note: This Internet newscast is a verbatim transcript of our evening television newscast. Where speakers use Kriol, we attempt to faithfully reproduce the quotes using a standard spelling system.

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