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Nov 26, 2012

Cycling Association election postponed because of 2 constitutions

There was a lot of hype leading up to planned elections for a new president of the Belize cycling Association on Saturday. Hundreds of cyclists turned up at the Aguada Hotel in Santa Elena, Cayo for the event which would have seen a challenge to the presidency of Emil Moreno by Council Dion Leslie. Two constitutions were tabled to govern the proceedings but that in itself stopped the election in its tracks. News Five’s Isani Cayetano reports.


Isani Cayetano, Reporting

Controversy surrounding the acknowledged constitution governing the Belize Cycling Association prevented that organization from proceeding with the election of a new executive body over the weekend.  A delegation of cyclists and enthusiasts converged on the Aguada Hotel in Santa Elena Town on Saturday, where they anticipated a wind of change within the hierarchy of the BCA.  Despite the intervention of the National Sports Council, led by chairman Alan Sharp, that democratic process, which would have seen incumbent president Emil Moreno being challenged by Belize City Deputy Mayor Deon Leslie, was postponed.


Alan Sharp, Chairman, National Sports Council

Allan Sharp

“There is a constitution that was submitted to the National Sports Council, as is required, every January.  So there was a constitution submitted by the Belize Cycling Association in January of this year.  It says that elections must be held by November thirtieth, of this year.  The present executive contends that there is a major error, that there is—a new constitution was made and approved by the general body in 2006, but subsequent to that, in listening to the history, a part of the history was that at certain times they relaxed the constitution, reverted partially back to the previous constitution and so it is extremely unclear to many people, including practically everybody inside the room, which represented, I believe, many different areas of the cycling community.”


Among them was past president Melvin Torres, whose views on the matter shed light on the disagreement concerning the election of officers.


Melvin Torres

Melvin Torres, Former President, Belize Cycling Association

“The Sports Council, who is mediating, I think, takes a very good position on it.  Clearly they want which constitution will be the constitution that ought to be the way forward.  Based on the constitution that they have registered with them, since this year January, they expected that the entire membership should have an active role in it.  If that is not done, they cannot recognize the body; however, they are taking the magnanimous approach and want to have it clearly defined so that the members can have an active role in it.”


According to BCA President Emil Moreno, the existence of both constitutions and the ensuing debate has thwarted the election proceedings.


Emil Moreno, President, Belize Cycling Association

Emil Moreno

“Unfortunately, we were unable to have that election due to the fact that there are two constitutions floating in the room today.  With that, and after a long three hours of discussion with the Sports Council, we decided that we won’t have the election and that we will move to December eighth, whereby we will ask general membership, which means all those associations that are out there, north, south, east and west to bring out their members and, of course, I was told that it should be paid members to the association, which is the Belize Cycling Association.”


Deon Leslie, who is challenging Moreno’s presidency, says that he will continue campaigning among cyclists until the December eighth deadline.


Dion Leslie

Deon Leslie, Presidential Candidate

“Continuing talking to cyclists, getting their input, what they want, their likes, their dislikes, you know, how we can improve the sport, just continue talking and dialoguing with everyone in the sport.  It gives me more time to speak with more team managers and get their input.  Of course, a little campaigning will go into it, but it’s basically to see what they want and, as I explained to the cyclists that were here, if they do elect me and they put myself and the entire team as the executive, “we work fi you!”  It’s similar to politics, your politicians, your elected officials work fi you and the same will be done here.”


Reporting for News Five, I am Isani Cayetano.

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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