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Aug 31, 2023

U.D.P. Protests in San Pedro; BRS Draws Distance

A small protest was staged by the United Democratic Party earlier today in San Pedro to coincide with the start of the 2023 Belize Investment Summit.  On Wednesday the opposition party indicated that it would be taking to the streets of the island town, despite not being granted a permit by the Belize Police Department to demonstrate in front of the venue.   But the protest did not go as planned, the executive of the party’s Belize Rural South constituency disassociated itself from the activity, essentially proving that the party still appears to be fractured.  News Five’s Isani Cayetano reports.


Isani Cayetano, Reporting

This morning in San Pedro, police erected a checkpoint and stood on the ready as a few members of the United Democratic Party picketed various locations on the island town, including the residence of Belize Rural South Area Representative Andre Perez.  The planned demonstration was held without a permit.  The crowd, nonetheless, left a lot to be desired.


Alberto August

Alberto August, Vice Chairman, U.D.P.

“All we’re asking is for the disgraceful Andre Perez to resign.  That’s all we’re asking and we are saying that if the prime minister cannot get Perez to resign then the prime minister must leave.  We are saying, we are calling on Johnny Briceño…  All we are saying, if the prime minister cannot do what is right for Andrew Perez, if the prime minister is unable to lead then he must leave because there are other people who can better lead this country.  We are saying yes to the investors, all of those people visiting, and we want this message to get to them loud and clear.  This demonstration is not about the investors on San Pedro.  This demonstration is about the disgraceful Andre Perez.”


The embattled Minister of the Blue Economy is noticeably absent from the Belize Investment Summit.  Despite the event taking place in his hometown, the well-known politician has taken a leave of absence.


Alberto August

“What we are saying is that we do not want Andre Perez to no longer sit in the National Assembly or in the House of Representatives of this country because he is a disgrace, disgrace to the people of San Pedro and disgrace to the entire nation.  We were saying that Manuel Heredia served for twenty-three years in parliament and we noh hear wahn scandal about Manuel Heredia.  This man has only served twenty-three months and ih done eena scandal.”


The United Democratic Party, notwithstanding a call for action, was unable to muster the support of its faithful.  On the island, stalwarts of the party were not present.  Instead, the Belize Rural South Executive Committee issued a public statement drawing distance between itself and the actions of the party.  One protestor traveled from Belize City to San Pedro to voice his discontent.


U.D.P. Supporter

U.D.P. Supporter

“Di protest da bout get P.U.P. outta di way.  Dehn di got wih stranded dehn got we worthless, like wahn worthless deportee.  Mih cyant live soh.  My people, I cyant mek my family and my picni live soh.  Everything di go up but yoh pay noh di goh up.  Everything gaan up and mi hand corn up cause ah di work hard.”


U.D.P. Chairman Mike Peyrefitte was back on the island today.  For him, the protest was  about being able to voice a strong objection against the manner in which the Briceno administration is running the country.


Mike Peyrefitte

Mike Peyrefitte, Chairman, United Democratic Party

“Nobody is better than anybody.  If somebody was happy doing something in Cayo and people from San Pedro wanted to protest or picket there, that would be fine to…no, no, no.  We are the constituents of this country.  When Johnny Briceno raise the price of fuel, ih noh only affect people from San Pedro. Ih affect di whole country.  When di Commissioner of Police di issue ten gun license to one man eena seventeen months, ih noh only affect San Pedro.”


Isani Cayetano for 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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