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Jan 10, 2019

How Will You Vote On April Tenth?

A national telephone poll on the I.C.J. Referendum conducted by www.pollBelize.org is showing a higher number of persons who would vote ‘no’ on April tenth. The poll was conducted in November 2018, utilizing the same sample design and questionnaire as the previous poll conducted in August. The results of the poll show that more people have decided to vote ‘no’ because they believe that taking Guatemala’s claim to the I.C.J. is too risky. The participants who said they would vote ‘no’ say don’t trust the government and that the claim should be ignored. On the other hand, those who would vote ‘yes’ said that going to the I.C.J. is better than negotiating with Guatemala. News Five’s Hipolito Novelo takes a closer look at the figures.

 

Hipolito Novelo, Reporting

We are three months away from the April tenth I.C.J. Referendum and the findings of a poll conducted by pollBelize.org recently are showing that more Belizeans are leaning towards a ‘no’ vote. Three of ten persons, thirty point nine percent, who participated in the polls said that they would vote ‘yes’ while four in ten respondents, or thirty-seven-point-one percent, said they would vote ‘no’. The numbers of persons who said ‘no’ increased by twelve percent when compared to a similar poll conducted in August 2018, representing somewhat the general feeling of the public on the topic. But for Prime Minister Dean the poll’s findings do not forecast what would be the result of the I.C.J. Referendum.

 

Dean Barrow

Prime Minister Dean Barrow

“I don’t know that you can properly conclude that the current sentiment is distinct no. You spoke about a poll; we’re still some ways away from April tenth. And in fact, the history of polling will show that there are lightening changes that in politics a week is an eternity. I think is something that you ought to bear well in mind. So I do not agree with you, I do not agree on your premise that as things now stand undoubtedly they would be a ‘no’ vote.”

 

Twenty-one point five percent of respondents said they have not decided while ten point five percent said they will not vote. The survey shows that there is a higher number of females than males who would vote ‘no’. It is no surprise that the highest number of respondents who said they will vote ‘no’ are from the Toledo District. The Orange Walk and Stann Creek districts tied with the highest proportion of ‘Yes’ votes. A high number of ‘undecided’ voters came from the Stann Creek District. The highest proportion of ‘Yes’ votes is among respondents who attended or completed University while the highest proportion of ‘No’ votes is among respondents who attended or completed Sixth Form.  The highest number of ‘Yes’ votes is among East Indians while the highest number of ‘No’ and ‘Undecided’ votes are among the Maya.

Of the three hundred and twenty-six participants, eight of ten said they would vote yes because they believe that the I.C.J. is the best option to settle the Guatemala claim. More than two in three of these respondents believed that going to the I.C.J. is better than negotiating with Guatemala and agree they do not want to pass on the Guatemala claim to their children or grandchildren. Those who said they would vote not said that the country should seek international support instead of going to the I.C.J.  “No” voters say that taking the Guatemala claim to the I.C.J. is too risky and that the claim should be ignored. Some say that they do not trust the government. Hipolito Novelo, News Five.


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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