Posted: Monday, January 18, 2021. 4:47 pm CST.
By Aaron Humes: The race to March 3, 2021 is off in earnest, as the United Democratic Party hosted a “virtual convention” of candidates for the Belize City Council municipal elections.
On Sunday, the UDP held what it describes as “Belize’s first safe and responsible virtual convention,” with voting restricted to membership of the ten constituency executive committees.
Four candidates – Orson Picart, Michael Theus, Bernard “B.Q.” Pitts, Jr., and Dean Samuels – submitted their names for Mayor, and 24 candidates were nominated for positions of councilor.
Picart, an anchor and reporter for KREM Radio/Television, defeated Theus, Pitts and Samuels in the vote, all former City Councillors and in Samuels’ case a deputy mayor.
The Councilor candidates are as follows: Kera Bowman, Andrew Bradley, Alisha Craig, Dr. Alain Gonzalez, Leon Guild, Allan Kelly, Kenneth Morgan, Anazette Olivera, Meagan Tasher and Shane Williams. Morgan, better known as “Kenny,” is a former aspirant for the Pickstock division and City Council candidate, while Williams has been a reporter for party organ The Guardian and press officer at City Hall. Only one former councillor, Gonzalez, returns to the slate from the 2018 line-up that lost to Bernard Wagner and the People’s United Party.
Picart told us this afternoon that entering politics has been a long-time held dream of his, and there is no time like the present in his view, as he wants to be part of the UDP’s rebuilding effort after its stunning loss in last November’s general elections.
Picart also said that while he respects the decision of the electorate in that election, he plans to lead a platform that promotes the UDP, which recently held 12 years’ service in the Old Capital, as the party best positioned to deliver the City’s residents their basic needs and services.
The party says it will be formally introducing the slate at a later time, and Picart said he looked forward to hashing out with his new colleagues a manifesto of municipal development.
Wagner has confirmed he is running for a second term, but the PUP has yet to decide how it will handle its selection process.
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