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Nov 9, 2020

Policing Election Day

When he spoke with the media this morning, Commissioner Chester Williams also spoke on policing on Election Day.  Williams says that their job is to ensure that the election process goes smoothly. He says that while they carry out those functions, the police will also be ensuring that COVID-19 regulations are adhered to.  This morning, Williams met with police commanders from across the country to discuss policing role and expectations on Wednesday. Here’s more from Williams.


Chester Williams

Chester Williams, Commissioner of Police

“As you would know the police would be at the different polling stations and counting stations. At the polling station, the police are just there to enforce law and order and they act on the directive of the presiding officer. At the counting stations the police will be there for law and order prevails and they act on the order of the presiding officer. But separate and apart from being engaged in the election process, we do have law and order still as a primary function of the police in terms of ensuring that people don’t use the opportunity to commit crime particularly in Belize City where we have the gang ridden areas of Belize City and other areas of the country all with a view that persons who are going to different polling stations to cast their votes can do so without being targeted by rivaling gangs or groups and so that is going to continue. Our duty is to ensure that the process goes through peacefully and we intend to carry through to that obligation this year. We do not anticipate any civil disobedience at all during this time but at the end of the day we still remain vigilant in the event that any person or group may want to create any civil disobedience. So, our officers are ready and we wait for Wednesday to come and go and hopefully some of the stress can be placed behind us as we move on.   The sale of alcohol is prohibited during the day and up to twelve am., twelve midnight , the night of election so you know the liquor licensing act do not make provision for any liquor establishment to be open beyond twelve midnight on a Wednesday so we do not foresee that is going to be an issue.  We just hope that the proprietor of these establishments will comply with the law and do not sell alcohol on that day.”

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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