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Jun 9, 2022

U.D.P. Objects to Collet Montejo’s Appointment to Re-division Taskforce

The pending re-districting exercise is set to begin in the weeks ahead, following a long-drawn out battle in the Supreme Court.  While the machinery for this extensive process is being put together, the decision by the Elections and Boundaries Commission to appoint Collet Montejo as the supervisor of all fieldwork is being met with consternation by the United Democratic Party. Earlier today, the Commission issued a release informing of Montejo’s appointment to the Re-Division Task Force. Senator Montejo, who is also a member of the People’s United Party’s executive, will oversee the gathering and providing of all information regarding the transport and facilities of the divisions. This is in respect of its physical features, as well as the distribution of the population throughout Belize, in accordance with the constitution.  The fieldwork, according to the Commission, will complement the work already being done by the technical experts in geographic information systems, legal studies, statistical analysis and electoral management.  The perceived conflict, nonetheless, is the duality of Montejo’s role in the P.U.P. hierarchy. This evening, News Five spoke by phone with U.D.P. Chairman Mike Peyrefitte.


Mike Peyrefitte

On the phone: Mike Peyrefitte, Chairman, United Democratic Party

“It is absolutely ridiculous and should not be done.  Listen to me, the vice chairman of the U.D.P. is a member of the Elections and Boundaries Commission, along with our past Secretary General, Mrs. Phillipa Griffith-Bailey.  This matter came up in February and those two members, on behalf of the U.D.P., vehemently objected to Mr. Collet Montejo being appointed as a field supervisor for the redistricting.  This man is a P.U.P. senator, but more importantly, this man is a Deputy Secretary General for the P.U.P..  Man, even if you want to promote just objectivity which should be the goal of the Elections and Boundaries Commission, you cannot appoint that person to be a field supervisor, you just cannot do that.  There are many people who are qualified to hold that post and you can’t tell me that the only person you can find in Belize is the Deputy Secretary General of the P.U.P..  We totally object to this.  We totally reject this and we hope that the government will see that objectivity is the most important thing in this redistricting exercise and they will pull that person from that position.  I mean, this is utterly ridiculous.” 


Isani Cayetano

“Is it the belief perhaps that his involvement in this process as the field supervisor would perhaps prejudice the exercise as it were?”


Mike Peyrefitte

“Well I am not saying that for sure it will, but what I am saying, come on, any reasonable person, any reasonable person cannot expect that the Deputy Secretary General of the P.U.P. will be totally fair in this redistricting process or to give advice or make recommendations in this redistricting process.  The Deputy Secretary General for the P.U.P. most naturally would give advice and make decisions and steer in the direction of what will benefit his political party which should not be the purpose of this exercise.  Get somebody professional, get somebody independent who the country can have confidence in that they will operate in a purely objective manner.”


Isani Cayetano

“Is there anything that can be done at this point to perhaps change the course or the decision that is being made?”


Mike Peyrefitte

“These people table matters in the House of Representatives and pull it back.  This is a walk-back government.  This is one that they need to walk back.”

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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