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Oct 19, 2011

Still leaderless; 3 vie to be Head of P.U.P.

As we reported on Tuesday night, there is a leadership crisis in the People’s United Party; it continues to spiral out of control.  Here is where the party stands right now. On Tuesday after Interim Leader Mark Espat declared he will not seek election as leader, the only candidate was Arthur Saldivar. Saldivar was seen as a wild card or a spoiler, but has not removed himself from the equation.  Tonight, it appears a free for all; there are two more names to add: Deputy leader Mike Espat from Toledo East, treasurer and Cayo south standard bearer, Julius Espat. Mike Espat has been running for elections since 1989 elections and lost in 2008. Earlier this year when Mark Espat and Cordel Hyde returned to the fold of the party, Espat was bypassed and instead Mark and Cordel emerged as deputy leaders. The other Espat, Julius, is a businessman and a relative newcomer who was endorsed to the Cayo south constituency earlier this year and has not been tested in electoral politics. Julius, we are told, emerged on Tuesday night when Senior Deputy Francis Fonseca declined to run for office and the past leader Said Musa confirmed he would not be seeking leadership of the party. He can count on the support of Musa and likely Briceño. The deadline for submission of names was at five this afternoon but an emergency meeting of the national executive and standard bearers is being called for Thursday to discuss the current quandary in which the party finds itself. No one knows who sanctioned that meeting, but tonight we can say that when we left you on Tuesday night, there was one name; tonight there are three. A fourth person, Joseph Mamood from Cayo North withdrew his name this evening after saying he would contest. Party Chairman Henry Usher gave a late evening press conference on the way forward for the Grand Old Party.

Henry Charles Usher, Chairman, P.U.P.

Henry Charles Usher

“We have more than one nomination and acceptances for the post of leader of the People’s United Party. Tomorrow we have a meeting with national executive and all standard bearers country wide and we will be briefing them on all the nominations and those that have accepted the nominations. Following that meeting, we will have a more detailed briefing for the media. I would like the national executive and the standard bearers to know before the media knows what is happening countrywide. In accordance with the time frame set up by the national executive, we will have a party council on the twenty-ninth of October; that is next week Saturday. And at tomorrow’s meeting, we will set a date for the national convention. I can confirm more than one applications.”

Jose Sanchez

“Who are the three applicants?”

Henry Charles Usher

“I will let the media know after the meeting tomorrow.”

Jose Sanchez

“In terms of the house meeting on Friday, who will act as leader?”

Henry Charles Usher

“Tomorrow we will have a more detailed briefing for the media. They can ask their questions tomorrow. I know the eyes of country are on the People’s United Party right now and I know the media wanted to get some answers today. I also want to remind you that even though the eyes are on us, we must not gasp over the huge discrepancies and what is happening in the government right now. Production sharing agreement passed and nobody said a word in the media. On Friday we have a ninth constitutional amendment going forward and despite the countrywide opposition to the amendment it seems that the government will push it forward—will take people to the house to make it show that they have the support of the country. So these are issues that the media needs to take up along with the People’s United Party. We appreciate the interest shown by the media and the country and tomorrow you will have all your answers.”

Jose Sanchez

“Will there be an opposition marching on Friday?”

Henry Charles Usher

“You’ll have your answers tomorrow Jose.”

Jules Vasquez, 7 News

“Is the party upset or disturbed that Mark Espat, the interim leader, has sort of left it in the lurch?”

Henry Charles Usher

“Well first of all, Mark Espat did accept the post of interim leader when the honorable John Briceño resigned. He has been working as the interim leader as of October 7th. And no he has not left the party in lurch because we are moving forward, we have applicants for the leadership and we will have a leader after the convention. So there is no sadness or regret at all Jules.”

Jules Vasquez

“Are you concerned that the names we have heard as candidates for leadership are not elected parliamentarians or even proven leaders?”

Henry Charles Usher

“I don’t know what you mean by proven leaders. I think that everybody who has run for this party are proven leaders. Perhaps some that have applied are not parliamentarians; but we have had a situation before where there had been a leader of the opposition in the house and a party leader outside the house. So that is not unprecedented. I do know the governor general has been calling around as is his right under the constitution to determine who the leader of the opposition is.”

Jules Vasquez

“I am told on the record by Mister Briceño that they will not support Mister Musa as leader of the opposition. It is him, Cordel Hyde and Mark Espat against Said Musa’s ascension to leader of the opposition. It’s a three-three split it appears.”

Henry Charles Usher

“Well, you are giving me news now Jules. I cannot tell you what Mister Briceño said because he hasn’t tell me anything.”

Jules Vasquez

“If what I am saying is accurate, how does that bolt for the P.U.P. heading into Friday?”

Henry Charles Usher

“We will have a leader of opposition on Friday Jules, we will have a leader of the opposition—this country will have a leader of the opposition.”

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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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13 Responses for “Still leaderless; 3 vie to be Head of P.U.P.”

  1. Marie says:

    espat mamood musa-is this an arab party?

  2. Lisa says:

    I really don’t see the party having a future with any of these men as leaders. Everybody arguing and fighting, the P.U.P. is still not united and the country is seeing it. I love my party and I will never go the other side, but how can I support them if they can’t even come together to support themselves. Personally I believe that Hon. Said Musa should step up and re-claim his post. People can say what they want about him, but in all 10 years that he was prime minister he had never done as much damage to the country as the present prime minister has done in less than one term.

  3. Mosh says:

    The challeng is a head of us, but sincerly its under a Blue Governement, that prosperty lies on..This present condition on the Belizean Economy is to its lowest, we cannot continue to support this, get concentration on poverty alleviation, decrease of crime rates, the unemployment rates… far more homeland afairs than just going personal with stuff like the 9th amendment. Get real, we elected leaders to better of the country not to hold us down or get over us. PUP Adelante……..

  4. dunfedup says:

    please, somebody nominate Dr. Henry Cantun, please! At least we will have someone who will have an understanding of agriculture-the backbone of our economy- Something this administration can not fathom.

  5. latinos del norte says:

    we are strong pup supporters! and will always be, come on blue machine get up and stand up for the people as you always did!!! musa we do strongly ask you to come back things were better here in the north during your time but with this government the north is disappearing!!! pup all the way!!!

  6. ABC says:

    I agree with all of u, some of these men are yet to prove themselves as area reps. There are a few men and women like Lisa Shoman, Henry Canton, Henry Usher himself that I think would do a good job as party leader. I hope they sort this out.

  7. tashy says:

    if PUP can’t even get this right, what will happen if they do get in the house. what the hell, don’t get me wrong I like the PUP but none of these men will work they all look like crooks. I might as well just vote for Dean Barrow.

  8. belizeanpride says:

    barrow most be laughing at them but we neither want the udp but it’s time for another third party to make a rise in the political field. we need a new party no more red or blue only.

  9. Be Real says:

    Who ever becomes leader; Said will be the power behind the throne.

  10. Retired CEO says:

    What we are experiencing in Belize is truly how democracies works it’s a process, it would not be a democratic form of government if they would just hand pick a leader. Individuals should vie for the position and may the best man wins. Espat is still the interim leader until the process works itself thru this difficult period, surely it is written that ease comes with diffculties. People should not panic, this is a natural phenomena, by weeks’ end there will be a new Leader that will lead the party forward unto victory. Que viva el PUP.

  11. citizen #2 says:

    Pride: again I agree with you, we need a new party to take over this government, too much corruption with what we have now. Some people want Musa back because, they were living the life while others suffer, they long to get back to that high living again. As Marie said arab party, that is what Belize have to look forward to?

  12. JahKid says:

    Babylon has fallen, shall it rise again??? Let’s watch and see which beast will rise as the new head!!!

  13. Optimist says:

    Sad to say Be Real, but I agree with you 100%. We are back with the same old guards that we as a party tried to get away from. So sad…. I am more disheartened by this entire debacle….

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