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Mar 16, 2012

New Belize City Council Sworn in Office

The U.D.P. won all seats in the Belize City Council by a big margin last week. Mayor Darrell Bradley and the ten councilors were sworn in today in a public ceremony in front of City Hall. Mayor Bradley has vowed that his approach will be inclusive of all city residents. News Five’s Andrea Polanco reports.

[OATH/SWEARING IN]

Andrea Polanco, Reporting

And with those words, the newly elected City Council was sworn in. The eleven member councilor team, led by his worship, the mayor Darrell Bradley was presented to a gathering of Ministers of Government, Supporters of the U.D.P., family and friends. This team is charged with the administration and development of the old capital’s affairs; one which is inclusive, says Mayor Bradley:

Darrell Bradley, Mayor, Belize City

Darrell Bradley

“I had listened to the ideas of many of the other persons who ran for mayor and many of them are good ideas and I have reached out already to a couple of them to incorporate some of the things that they had suggested into our plans because the city cannot be build only on one person or even one party. We must be inclusive of every single person. And your mayor and your city council will reach out a hand of friendship to every single person to work towards that one goal of building Belize City.”

Core to the team’s vision, stringent measures of accountability and transparency will be implemented. Mayor Bradley says these are    hallmark of his leadership:

Darrell Bradley

“I am pleased to announce this afternoon, that we will shortly implement at city hall, an innovative auditing model which will be made up of three components and I believe that this will be vital in restoring the  kind of confidence in city governance. These three components will include an independent external auditor. We have already met with several auditing firms and we intend that it should come on stream within the next two weeks. We will also have a very strong and vibrant audit committee of the city council, and this committee will be chaired by myself and made up of participation of people outside the council. And the reason, I am determined to chair this committee is that I believe that ensuring that the public funds is used in the right manner and that is the responsibility chiefly of the mayor of  Belize City. And thirdly, we will strengthen the internal audit department of Belize City Council to ensure that the staff of the city develops a culture of respecting the funds of the city.”

Newly elected Minister of local Government, Senator Godwin Hulse, threw the support of his ministry behind the city council; tasking the residents to do the same:

Hon. Senator, Godwin Hulse

Godwin Hulse

“In keeping with the pronouncements of the Prime Minister, the Honorable Dean Barrow; that this will be the best government that this country will ever see, I commit the full resources of the ministry of local government to assist you in pursuit of this objective. I must say a note to the citizens of this beautiful city; perhaps in your quite way, you protested against what you considered was poor management of your city and indeed of your government resources. And if you did, I must say that I had also joined in with that process because there was a time when I refused to pay my taxes on time because I felt they were not being accounted for. But now that there is a firm commitment that says your resources will be well-managed, your funds will be accounted for, I urge you—each and every one of you—to do your civic responsibility and pay to this council your taxes on time.”

And those payments of taxes are critical, because fundamental to this new city council’s mandate is a focus on infrastructure; with an emphasis on streets and drains:

Darrell Bradley

“We will also work with the ministry of local government on a series of innovative legislative changes;  and one change that I see that is needed immediately is to put in place legislation to require that thirty cents out of every dollar collected by the city council must be spent on infrastructure. It is important that we legislate our commitment to fixing streets and drains to the proper level that you, the residents of Belize City deserve. We must address the issue of proper streets and proper drains and it is my commitment to you here today that we will get it done. We will work to implement a fifty-fifty program, where residents or businesses wish to provide fifty percent of the cost to fully pave their streets, and then the council will find the remaining half.”

And if this new team doesn’t live up to the promise and commitment to utilize the city funds prudently, Bradley reminded the gathering of their manifesto’s re-call mechanism; something which he says is expected to be put in black and white.  And with that said, Mayor Bradley says, the doors of city hall will remain open to the public:

Darrell Bradley, Mayor, Belize City

“I intend to have a city hall that is open and accessible and friendly so that if people feel that they need to have a concern addressed, they can address that concern to the highest office in the city.”

Reporting for News Five, I’m Andrea Polanco.

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3 Responses for “New Belize City Council Sworn in Office”

  1. Storm says:

    Much is expected from those to whom much has been given.

    UDP has all the power in its hands, so it had better govern well and wisely, or accept all the blame for failure.

  2. blackberry says:

    In the interst of good governance mayor Darrell Bradley has to decide what he will do about his father who is getting a salary with tax payers money working for the city council and is spending quality time at wave radio.

  3. Ediison says:

    In the country of bielze.politicians NEVER go to jail.they make the laws of bielze,they know how to make them in such a way,they can never be cought stealing.after all,they are lawyers,crooks,master minds of grand design,this bielzeans criminals with a law degree are the LUCIFERS fallen angels in the flesh,they have eyes,but cant see the suffering bielze live everyday,they have ears,but they cant hear the cry of poor bielzeans for justice,good health care,good roads,

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