8 years later! Print E-mail
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Thursday, 11 February 2016 00:00

Sunday, 7 February, 2016 marked the eight anniversary of the UDP and the people of Belize sending  the PUP scampering into opposition. We at this Newspaper remember that day as it were yesterday. It was a Thursday and that election was held on a Thursday because it was to be held on the day before being Ash Wednesday, but when the then Prime Minister Musa announced to Church Leaders who had assembled at a breakfast meeting he was hosting for them along with his Cabinet of Ministers, the Church Leaders protested to elections being held on a day with such significance to us in what is considered as a Christian Country. He had to push it back a day.

Little did the PUP know that had they set that election for at night between the hours of 7 p.m. to 6 a.m., where the voting would take place at the various cemeteries across the country on any day they wished , Belizeans would have shown up to vote them out . See Belizeans were set on delivering a beat down to the PUP because of all  the atrocities that the PUP had  committed against this nation from August of 1998 up to the date of the 2008 election. Belizeans had already given them a sample of what was to come when the PUP took a whipping at the 2006 Municipal Elections. No day or situation could keep the PUP from reaping the fruits of those seeds they had planted back in 1998. It was now harvest time in 2008. The trees had produced bitter fruits that had to be served to the PUP.

In an attempt to try and win the 2008 elections the Musa regime tried all sort of tricks and shenanigans. First they Gerrymandered, they chopped the divisions where the UDP usually won and mixed sections of areas where PUP appeared to be popular to try and sway the results in their favor, but they lost in those divisions they tampered with. Then they did massive naturalizations, those newly minted Belizeans were registered in time to vote, many of them were registered on the 10th January 2008, the last day possible to be able to vote and that too did not help and finally they spent huge sums of money on both a formal and informal campaign. We later on after forming government found out that they spent $20 million from Venezuela without any proper accounting for that money. They also were hiding the fact that it was not just the $ 20 million they had used to try and buy the election. There was another $20 million they had diverted to pay a private loan for some cronies. It was only when the Venezuelans asked for an accounting of the entire $ 40 million that we knew how much it was.  We have since recovered the amount that was used to cover that loan.

All the scheming did not help the PUP as the people had unfinished business with them. PUP lost and lost badly. Prior to 7th February, 2008 PUP held a 21 to 8 majority in the House of Representatives. That was just short of a SUPER-MAJORITY. After the election the UDP victory was so massive that the UDP had a SUPER-MAJORITY. The PUP has never been able to recover from that dusting they took at the hands of the Belizean voters, having lost every form of election since then. They changed leader in 2008, 2011and 2016. There was also a stint in 2011 where they were without a leader. The person they wanted to be their leader refused to be their leader. He apparently was so fed up of them that he left that sorted bunch about 6 months later just before the 2015 election. Some people may say that there were 3 months between November and February where they were technically without a Leader as Francis had stepped down and then later claimed he never left. During all that time the UDP has been moving from strength to strength with the same leader not for just the last 8 years but for the last 18 years.