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Nov 16, 2017

Another Change of Date for Guatemala Referendum; Re-Registration First Here

The Government of Guatemala has once again changed the date of the referendum on attending the International Court of Justice to resolve its unfounded claim on Belize. According to Siglo Viente y Uno, the new date was announced by the Electoral Commission earlier this week and is scheduled for April fifteenth as opposed to March eighteenth.  Is this an indication of cold feet by the republic despite its insistence that third parties are not driving the changes? Opposition Leader John Briceño suggests that the internal problems afflicting Jimmy Morales’ government may be to blame. But before Belize goes to the polls as expected later in 2018, Briceño says the Prime Minister must be held to his promise of re-registration of Belize’s electoral rolls.

 

John Briceño

John Briceño, P.U.P. Leader

“I think Guatemala has massive problems that they have to deal with – corruption, governance – so I wouldn’t be surprised if a month for now or later they are going to change the date, we are going to have to see exactly what they want to do. But we have to hold the Prime Minister to his word, where he has promised us in the Opposition and has promised this nation that before he holds a referendum, that he will have a re-registration. Because as we have been saying the present voters’ list is corrupt; but we have seen what the strategy of the Prime Minister has been. He is doing everything possible to hold on to this bogus, this corrupt voters’ list because he wants to use that to go to the polls and he has managed to slip it through for the municipal elections. So the only way he can do that is to say right after that, on July first we are going to have re-registration, we are going to hold him to that. But we certainly do not expect them to have a referendum before we have re-registration in Belize.”

 

A date of March eleventh was also reported due to conflicts with the Lent season. Briceño noted that the P.U.P. still wants bipartisanship on the issue, but it demands to be respected and taken seriously by the Government.

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