PUP leader calls for complete unity following humbling Municipal defeat

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PUP Leaders

PUP Leaders

Thursday, March 5, 2015. AARON HUMES Reporting: Flanked by other leaders of the Opposition People’s United Party, leader of the PUP Francis Fonseca today reiterated a call for complete unity by Party supporters in the wake of a humbling defeat in Wednesday’s Municipal Elections.

The United Democratic Party’s “red tide” swept through 8 of 9 Municipalities, with Orange Walk being the only hold out.

Kevin Bernard (Mayor of Orange Walk)

Kevin Bernard
(Mayor of Orange Walk)

Mayor Kevin Bernard and 4 of his returning councilors are joined by UDP newcomers Chantel Casimiro and Louigie Gomez.

According to Fonseca the party had not expected to lose its other strongholds in Dangriga and Punta Gorda; but under questioning from reporters he refused to turn on any Standard Bearer or Area Representative for their inability to deliver victory in the Municipalities.

Francis Fonseca

Francis Fonseca

Instead he said that the Party’s performance will be the subject of thorough review by its internal bodies.

Fonseca says a majority of Standard Bearers and Area Representatives have overnight expressed their continued support and so he is not contemplating resignation as Party Leader.

While noting the continued disparity in resources, Fonseca said that the party will not whine about it nor will it accept financing from such major donors as Lord Michael Ashcroft if there are strings attached.

Fonseca told us that the majority of the Party’s campaign financing for this election came from smaller donors such as families and businesses and the Party would seek to widen that support base.

Francis Fonseca

Francis Fonseca

He reiterated that everything including the Party’s choice of candidates, policies and strategy and particularly his own performance as leader will be subject to analysis.

Fonseca said that a secret recording in which former rival John Briceño was heard criticizing his leadership would be addressed internally.

But Fonseca maintained that he and Briceño have an excellent working relationship.

Fonseca told us that voter turnout is not as much an issue for him as yesterday’s figures nearly matched those of previous Municipal Elections, such as 2009.

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