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Feb 6, 2012

Mark Espat steps down; P.U.P. reacts

Carolyn Trench Sandiford

There is a gigantic shift in the P.U.P. today. If it could be measured on the Richter scale, strong tremors would have been felt in both the Albert and Lake Independence Divisions. Both are considered P.U.P. strongholds and safe seats but Mark Espat has stepped down along with his brother-in-law Cordel Hyde. The latest resignation from Espat jolted the People’s United Party to summon an executive meeting this morning at Independence Hall in Belize City.  The Party executive discussed the departure of Hyde on Friday and a letter from Mark Espat’s Albert Committee informing that he too was stepping down. But at a press conference this afternoon, the opposition put up a unified front with all thirty-one standard bearers present. Hyde was replaced by Belizean for Justice’s founding member Yolanda Schakron while businessman, David Craig known for his years of service with the Bowen and Bowen group and also in the citrus industry took over from Espat. The replacements were speedy but it won’t be easy for the new standard bearers to canvass and garner support for the March seventh general elections. Espat’s Albert Committee resigned in full while in Lake I., majority but not one hundred percent support has been given to Schakron. The press conference started with the Party Chairman, Henry Charles Usher reading a declaration of support from all members of the national executive and the standard bearers for the Leader Francis Fonseca. Fonseca and his Deputy, Carolyn Trench Sandiford addressed the media about the changes to the two P.U.P. strongholds.

Carolyn Trench Sandiford, Deputy Party Leader

“We are saddened of course by the decision of the gentlemen from Albert and Lake Independence in their decision not to contest the upcoming General Elections. However, it’s their personal choice and as a party we respect that. They have given of their time, energy and talents over a number of years in fulfillment of the commitment of this party, to their constituents and to the country.”

Francis Fonseca, Leader of the Opposition

Francis Fonseca

“We had a joint meeting of national executive and standard bearers of the P.U.P. this morning. during that meeting, we received a press release from the P.U.P. Albert committee indicated that honorable Mark Espat will not be contesting the next upcoming General Elections. We discussed that matter in our meeting. We thanked obviously the honorable Mark Espat and the P.U.P. Albert committee for their service to this party and this country. As the deputy leader said; as I indicated in respect o the honorable Cordel Hyde last Friday, we respect the decision of individuals; it is always a difficult decision to make whether or not you enter politics, you remain in politics or if you are going to leave politics and we have to respect the personal decisions that people make. It is not for us to second guess those decisions. Obviously as I have said very clearly and publicly, it would have been great for these individuals to continue to represent the party. They are obviously outstanding area representatives who have delivered resounding victories for the P.U.P. in their respective constituencies over a period of some more than fifteen years. So we respect their decision and as all of us have said today, we have to move on. It’s not in my DNA to harbor any kind of negative feelings. I certainly, I was grateful to the honorable Cordel Hyde, he was very gracious; he called me—we had  a long conversation on the phone. I think we spoke about fifteen minutes about his son’s illness, about other issues, about the party, about lake Independence. We had a long, very cordial, respectful conversation. He sent me a personal letter indicating his intentions and I was very grateful for that. None of that has happened with respect to Albert, but everybody has to choose their own way to depart. I hold absolutely no ill-feelings. I wish Mister Mark Espat all the best. He is obviously a very skilled, competent individual. And as I have said, I thank him for his service to the party and my door is always open to Mark Espat.”

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20 Responses for “Mark Espat steps down; P.U.P. reacts”

  1. Bulba Martinez says:

    Adelante, Les goh forwad, wabarwohgoun. NEXT!!!!

  2. Lucas says:

    Whether the PUP wins or loses the general election, the pup is better off without the bro-lees. No cooperation but more of the same. Imagine a pup super-majority with these two, Francis would not be able to do any necessary changes to the constitution without bowing to these guys. In other words, they would hold Francis to ranson and by extension, the people and country of Belize. Francis should feel relieved that they are gone. Let it be water under the bridge and move on. And something that has nothing to do with politics but with national security, I wonder if the people of Belize are aware that the President of Guatemala wants the govt. of Belize to remove the BDF observation post called TREETOPS. I hope that Barrow does not cave-in because next will be CADENAS.

  3. Maria Marshall says:

    I feel so sorry for the honourable Francis Fonseca, as he seems to be a good man but alas the name “Fonseca” is remembered by the Belizean people only too well. (Ralph Fonseca).

    It is a crying shame but I’m afraid the People’s United Party is on a slow coastal drive downhill.

    Maria M.

  4. CEO says:

    Start to rethink your ways and do not be so political that your party falls apart.

    Belizean politics is maturing and party leaders need to start rethinking their MO. The style of leadership in Belize has always been a strong leader sorounded by many plebes who just did as he said. There are those that will challenge leadership, and they should, this is the way people will get better service.

    Punishing your “advisors” because they dear to stand up and speak out is a thing of the past and the sooner Barrow and who ever is else is vying for the position learn this the better off Belize will be. Good leaders first need to follow. Leaders that do not know how to follow are called dictators!

  5. hope says:

    Hats off to Mr. Hyde and Mr. Espat for their years of service to the Party. We wish them well, but the show must go on. Mr. Price said, “No man is bigger than the Party,” its a short time indeed to be making these changes, but i am certain that by a close margin the PUP will be victorious in the general and municipal elections, and will restore the Jewel, from this incompetent UDP Government.

  6. maryjane says:

    well for all Belizeans let not fool ourself nothing have been done under d barrow administration,no jobs no money no vision imagine now the possibility of the presedent of Guatemala telling we the Belizeans what to do and what they want just imagine and what is barrow doing nada how can we trust them,go Francis as you said lots of challenges and guess what those just make you stronger PUP adelenate

  7. acain says:

    I have prayed for the destruction of the PUP party as we know it. Only after the old guard’s grip on power has been relingushed will there be a new PUP. A true clensing is needed…

  8. Eye In The Sky says:

    Too bad for the PUP they will lose another election.
    Organized greedy Barrow is too smart for the unorganized greedy PUP’s.
    Well there is 2017 and maybe they have their act in order by then.

  9. RadicalBelizean says:

    If this party cannot even get their act together, can we really be expected to vote for them to form the next government of Belize?

    I have never seen anything like it. I believe the people stepping down have courage, and we must respect them for that ( in particular Mr Espat).

    PUP need a new and improve calibre of people. Sick of the same old, same old.

  10. Mosh says:

    In a battle of war, we will always have fallen soldiers, but that does not mean we have last the battle, it makes us stronger with fresh energetic comanders… Team 31, stronger than ever..La Victoria siempre..

  11. busha says:

    damn… people get fat in belize real quick eh? look at the chunky neck and cheeks… too much coconut oil in the rice and beans eh?

  12. Tanya says:

    That’s why….let’s all go Independent. If all of us who have had enough of parties do it then change will begin for good. let’s sena a message to the PUDP!

  13. Earl Grey says:


  14. Mr. Concerned says:

    These two guys are just a keeping the ball rolling. PUP will once again be victorious no matter what injury they have caused. The two new comers are ready and we will move forward with the PUP.

  15. Belizean says:

    There is a good reason why the two P.U.P’s left Fonseca on the ice beside their member of the family getting sick. PUP should do self analysis!

  16. Retired CEO says:

    While, I agree that leadership should be inclusive and not exclusive. I disagree with these two traitors. As it exists in the Belizean political arena, the order of the day is follow thy leader no matter what? By all means leaders/leadership should be open to constructive feedback coupled with limited challenges internally. No one should be punished for speaking out at the right time and place, Nevertheless, one should not be hanging their dirty laundry in public. What has been demonsrated by these two traitors is totally unacceptable under all circumstances. From time to time they pretenciously behaved as if they were above the party and it’s leadership, consistently attempting to hang their dirty laundry in the public. The timimg of their resignation is highly innapropriate and crucial to the surival of the party. One, cannot think anything other than this was carefully,maliciously planned and executed with the intent of wreaking havoc on the party and it’s current leader. Clearly, what is being demonstrated by these two pseudo wise cracks is highly innapropriate, childish immatured and unacceptable. They have shown gross disrespect to the current leadership, the principles and precepts of the party, coupled with disloyalty to their respective constituencies, whom they represented. In any other part of the world they would be considered traitors and would suffer gravely for their behavior, disrespect and contempt for leadership. Their innapropriate behavior appearently shows, imaturity, selfishness, vindictiveness and contempt for the party and it’s followers. Their subtle behavior resembles that of Cain who slew his brother for selfish reasons and Judas who betrayed his leader and master for thirty pieces of silver. Nevertheless, despite their deviously ill planned behavior the PUP will survive and gods’ willing, will enjoy a taste of victory in the upcoming elections Mar. 7, 2012. If God is with us, it doesn’t really matter who is against us. Que viva PUP, Vote PUP all the way.

  17. Louisville,Ky says:

    Retired CEO, I am surprised that with the kind of passion and fervor for your political party, you did not offer yourself as a candidate to fill any of the three slots abondoned by the aspiring candidates. Obviously Mark and Cordel no longer desire to be part of a crimminal organisation poseing as a political party so decided to listen to the dictates of their consciences.
    Me thinks for these two gentlemen, it was people over party and since that agenda no longer obtained, they decided to walk. Is there a lesson in all of that for you?

  18. jesse says:

    I think mark got tired of stealing belizeans $$$$$$$$$$$ and not getting what i read in here belizeans still think that the pup can make a difference in belize,lets get it straight belizeans,both pup and udp are a mafia,a criminal organization,a special club,a lawfirm,heading by the biggest criminals belize with ever see,and they are profesional thiefs called lawyers.

  19. UDP all the way.. says:

    I believe that its the people that elect representatives and our leaders and I know the PUP have new leaders and new representatives that can make the change for A BETTER BELIZE,the people elected the UDP 4 years ago,the people gave them a chance to better our country and the UDP have been incompetent,arrogant,ignorant to the Belizean people. the UDP haven’t done nothing .

  20. Di Bradda says:

    Louisville KY, that means you feel the same about what Marcel Cardona has said about HIS party’s leadership, no?

    What Retired CEO is commenting on is timing. The pup didn’t suddenly change last week, if any thing it has been steadily changing for the better over the past year with additions like Dr. Francis Smith, Julius Espat, Dr Hoy, and others who are professionals and not career politicians. Mark and Cordel could have done the honorable thing and resigned months if not years ago. Timing is everything.

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