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Apr 29, 2019

Cordel Hyde Tells G.O.B. to Take a Chill Pill

Cordel Hyde

Prime Minister Dean Barrow has made it quite clear that the I.C.J. referendum will be held on May eighth. Now, on April twenty-sixth, the Elections and Boundaries Department notified the public that the cut-off date for registration as electors for persons wishing to vote was moved to April tenth, 2019. So if you did not register before then, you are not eligible to vote in the referendum. The People’s United Party has called on the government to take a step back and properly prepare the electorate to make an informed decision. Today, both sides spoke on this.


Cordel Hyde, Deputy Leader, P.U.P.

“If this was a play or novel it would be a tragic comedy. The reality is that this is the most important question of our lifetime and the government is getting it wrong every step of the way. They messed it up with the writ in the first referendum. They tried to get the Court of Appeal to expedite the appeal. They messed that up. They went to the House and they passed a law which is messed up. They come here now trying to argue this point to lift the injunction. They messed it up.   They messed up every step of the way.  And this is the Government that wants to take us to the I.C.J. in the most critical question of our lifetime. Can we expect them to get it right? That is the problem. You think that with all that has happened, the Government would take a chill pill, hold it down, would try to get it right and take their time.”


Lisa Shoman

Lisa Shoman, Attorney for G.O.B.

“Why should the Government of Belize, the Prime Minister and the Attorney General need to wait? There is an entirely new law having to do with this. We are satisfied with the ruling of the Chief Justice that said that there were no serious issues to be tried because we argued those points and he took our points in terms of prematurity. He took the point that the Minister of Foreign Affairs, as we argued, does have the right to enter into the Special Agreement. He took the point as to the issue of the alteration of the constitution. And he ruled that there is no serious issue to be tried so if you are looking to come back to litigate that you have to get the Court of Appeal to overturn that first. So that is now their challenge. So the uphill climb if you like is now in the hands of the claimants in this case.”


Eamon Courtenay

Eamon Courtenay, Attorney for P.U.P.

“Prudence, good sense requires sober reflections, mature leadership and a pause. To quote the Deputy Leader, take a chill pill and let get this right so we can have a lawful referendum, so we can have a proper education campaign that is balanced, and fair and honest above all. I don’t know what are the dark forces at work that are causing the government to insist that this referendum must go through in indecent haste. But I can only say to you that it seems to me that we need to pause as a matter of public interest.”

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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