Darrell Bradley Leading UDP 11 to Victory Print E-mail
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Written by Shane D. Williams   
Thursday, 01 September 2011 00:00

UDP Belize City Council Team.On Sunday, August 28th, 16 outstanding candidates offered themselves to represent the United Democratic Party in the 2012 Belize City Council Elections. Those individuals are Karima Card, Eric Chang, George Davis Sr., Alifa Elrington, Roger Espejo, Dr. Alain Gonzalez, Noreen Hulse, Dion Leslie, Gilroy Middleton, Bernard “B Q” Pitts Jr., Dean Samuels, Kevin Singh, Michael Theus, Erlett Thomas, Wayne Usher and Philip Willoughby. The outstanding 16 included teachers, doctors, attorneys, business owners and community workers. Unfortunately, only ten could be selected to contest the municipal elections.

Since there was no contest for mayor and the number of candidates was 16, not 34, the get out the vote campaign was not as intense and the turnout was not as high as the previous city council convention. However, the energy and excitement of the candidates and supporters at the ITVET compound demonstrated clearly that the United Democratic Party is alive and well in Belize City.

The convention ended up as a contest between old and new candidates. 8 new candidates placed their names on the ballot that included 7 current and 1 former city councilors. The new candidates had to convince voters that they were prepared to handle the affairs of the city. They had to go on a campaign blitz to familiarize themselves with city residents. While the incumbent candidates had to prove that despite the council’s public relation hiccups, they have served the city well enough to deserve another chance.

Polls opened at 9 a.m. and a steady flow of voters made their way out up until closing time at 5 p.m. Ballot boxes were opened at about 5:35 p.m. and counting continued up to 10:30 p.m. The first few boxes revealed that Councilors Dion Leslie, Eric Chang and new comer Bernard “BQ” Pitts Jr. were front runners and held a secure slot on the UDP slate. As counting continued it was okay for current and former Deputy Mayors, Dean Samuels and Phillip Willoughby, and Alifa Elrington to relax, knowing that they had made the ten. With six slots clearly secured by 9 p.m., there were 4 up for grabs and 6 candidates with a legitimate shot to hold on to one of them. Those six candidates were Karina Card, Roger Espejo, Dr. Alain Gonzalez, Councilor Kevin Singh, Michael Theus and Councilor Wayne Usher. After the final ballot was counted and the votes tallied the ten victorious candidates were Dion Leslie with 2,450 votes; Eric Chang with 2363 votes; Bernard “BQ” Pitts Jr. with 2,109 votes; Phillip Willoughby with 2,060 votes; Alifa Elrington with 1,986 votes; Dean Samuels with 1,914 votes; Dr. Alain Gonzalez with 1,828 votes; Roger Espejo with 1,751; Kevin Singh with 1,750 votes and Michael Theus with 1,697 votes. Theus edged out Card by a mere 15 votes.

After the votes were tallied the Chairman of the Party, Hon. Patrick Faber, led the candidates to meet and thank their supporters. Dion Leslie, who received the most votes, thanked the city residents on behalf of the 16 candidates. He expressed special gratitude to those who walked the campaign trails with their candidates and informed them that the work has just begun. Darrel Bradley, Attorney at Law, was sworn in as the Mayoral Candidate for the United Democratic Party’s Belize City 11. Bradley said, “Up until 5 p.m. there were slates on top of slates on top of slates. At this moment there is one united slate that will work together to secure victory for UDP in March of 2012.” He promises to bring integrity, efficiency and diligence to City Hall. Bradley said that Sunday was just the beginning of a march towards victory at the municipal elections in March of 2012 and a greater victory in the 2013 General Elections.