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Tracey Taegar-Panton says she is the candidate of ‘change’ to lead UDP; calls out double-standard on domestic violence policy, ‘leadership crisis’

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Posted: Monday, January 31, 2022. 10:49 am CST.

By Aaron Humes: Far from backing down after what appears to be an overwhelming endorsement of opponent Moses “Shyne” Barrow by the Caucus for Change this weekend, candidate for United Democratic Party (UDP) Leader Tracey Taegar-Panton has doubled down on her candidacy.

In a statement issued this morning, she points out: “We can not have different standards for those who aspire for the highest office in the land. Domestic violence is a critical issue of national importance. Two persons have been publicly accused of domestic violence. One has been forced to resign.”

It is her clearest signal yet after being accused in some quarters of waffling on the issue.

She further acknowledged, “The United Democratic Party that I am privileged to serve has a leadership crisis. We are at a critical crossroads in our organization’s political history. There is an urgent need for us to re-establish the party’s credibility as a mass political party. There is an urgent need for us to regain the trust and confidence of the Belizean people if we are to remain a viable alternative to govern. We need to inspire hope among those who look to us for leadership.”

And she is that hope, she concludes: “My bid to lead the United Democratic Party will achieve these objectives: credibility, trust, confidence. We represent the people. We have a sacred responsibility to serve Belize. My candidacy is the change the UDP and Belize need at this time.”

It remains to be seen how many she can convince of that within and without the Party.

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