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#269969 - 03/02/08 11:26 PM Who will lead the PUP?
Short Offline
Francis, Johnny & Mark
Thursday, 28 February 2008
vie for PUP Leadership

Belize City, February 27th 2008 - On March 30th the People’s United Party will hold a special convention to elect a new leader. Three of the People’s United Party’s most promising young leaders, Johnny Briceño, Mark Espat and Francis Fonseca, have accepted nominations submitted on their behalf to become the next PUP Leader. Following the announcement of Party Leader Said Musa on February 13th 2008 that it was time to make way for new blood in the Party Leadership, the PUP Secretariat announced that nominations for Party Leader would be accepted and the date for a special convention was set for March 30th 2008.

On Friday February 22nd when the nominations deadline closed, three names were submitted.


Francis Fonseca, John Briceño & Mark Espat

Mark Espat was nominated by the constituencies of Albert, Port Loyola, Lake Independence and Collet.

Johnny Briceño was nominated by the Orange Walk North and Corozal North Constituency Committees. Johnny Briceño is a Deputy Party Leader of the PUP.

Francis Fonseca was nominated by the United Women’s Group and several Constituency Committees including Cayo West, Cayo North, Cayo South, Pickstock, Dangriga, Stann Creek West, Toledo East and Toledo West. Francis Fonseca was the Chairman of the PUP up until he accepted nominations.

The race is on and the campaign for the leadership of the Party has, to say the least, taken a life of its own.

A reform proposal has received the support of all three candidates and a number of other constituencies.

The proposals recommend firstly that the delegate size be increased from the current one in every hundred to one in every twenty five voters which the Party received in a constituency in the last elections. Another proposed recommendation calls for the Secretariat to prepare and release the list of names of the delegates who will be allowed to cast votes on the day of the special convention.

The Secretariat has announced that the recommendations will be discussed and decided on at a National Party Council.

The BELIZE TIMES, the official newspaper organ of the PUP, will with utmost respect to the values of the Party and the candidates remain neutral and will not reflect any bias towards any one candidate. In addition, all three candidates will be afforded an equal opportunity to campaign to the party faithful and loyal readers of this newspaper.

The People’s United Party is once again at a historic milestone, not a crossroads, for the PUP has heard the message of the masses loud and clear. February 7th was in many ways that crossroads and the PUP has chosen its course: CHANGE WILL COME.

http://belizetimes.biz/content/view/1122/9/
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#272101 - 03/13/08 08:17 PM Re: Who will lead the PUP? [Re: Short]
Short Offline
And while the special convention on March 30th 2008 is getting closer, I didn't want to withhold this interesting discussion that is emerging on the Belize Culture list; I took the liberty to borrow it.

Originally Posted By: Anonymous
One the one hand, there is a bright young mind by the name of Francis vying for the top spot, but his surname and his lack of charisma (according to some) are his liabilities. I, personally, think Francis is a great person and should definitely at some point become the party leader but I don't think this is the time.

On the other hand, we have Mark, UBAD candidate by proxy, also vying for the top spot. Unfortunately, his affliation with the racist UBAD is a HUGE liability. Not to mention, his back-stabbing and bad-minding, two qualities one should not have if one is to be considered a leader.

Which leaves the one viable candidate for party leader at this time (drum roll everyone) the great Johnny B. Johnny B has been in training and has served in the no. 2 spot for ten or so years. Johnny B is smart. He is professional. He is charismatic. He is noble. And he has enough experience to fill the future role of PM. The great thing about Johnny is that he knows how to dissent without resorting to back-stabbing and bad-minding which is how a great leader should operate.

I vote for Johnny B for party leader! John B, if I were voting as a delegate, you would have my vote. (Francis will also get my vote later on down the road).

Originally Posted By: Anonymous
Er, well maybe.

But Johnny B remember was in the hierarchy of the gang of 7 that betrayed the P.U.P. leadership and caused the ship to sink in the end.

Some would say his was the greatest betrayal of all as he was the DEPUTY PRIME MINISTER - the man who of all people should have displayed greater loyalty contrasted with the other folks who were just ministers.

The PUP made him the second most powerful main in the cabinet and the guy who would have the back of the P.M. but he did exactly the opposite. I know his dad and uncle would never have betrayed the party leader - worked with those guys for a while.

I personally like Johnny and think he could make for a great leader for the P.U.P. - but the P.U.P. at this time are using LOYALTY as the criteria for leadership.

Originally Posted By: Wellington C. Ramos
THE PEOPLE'S UNITED PARTY IS FALLING APART

What you are recomending is the best thing for the People's United Party.The People's United Party are going to elect Francis Fonseca as their next leader whether you like it or not. The Peoples United Party like people who are followers. Once you start to question anything they are about to embark on, they accuse you of being unfaithful, disloyal and stubborn. Said Musa was a Megalomaniac Dictator he refused to listen to all good suggestions from anybody. I know John Briceno and his entire family from when he was a little boy when I was stationed in Orange Walk Town as a Corporal of Police in the 1970's.
Mark Espat should withdraw his candidacy and support John Briceno because he is the most qualified out of all three but he is of Arab descent and he is the most hated by the PUP bosses from the time he became a PUP. Mark Espat, Cordel Hyde and John Briceno were hoping for the PUP to change. Waiting for the PUP to change is like waiting for a Tiger to become a Cat. That will never happen. PUP will break up and a new Party shall emerge with either Mark Espat or Briceno as a new leader for one of them or together as a team. I live in the United States and I can see this happening. How come you guys cannot see this or accept the truth and you all live in Belize? I really do not care because I am a UDP. Every Political Party will have their Internal Squabbles from time to time but when it is constant it works to the other opposition parties advantage. UDP have had this over the years and now it is time for us to sit back and watch the PUP in their Circus Game.

Yours truly,
Wellington C. Ramos

When you take into consideration that George Price endorsed Francis Fonseca, this could be a recipe for an exciting nomination.
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#272229 - 03/14/08 01:33 PM Re: Who will lead the PUP? [Re: Short]
Katie Valk Offline
Johnny withdrew from the race over the delegate issue with the PUP executive. He was the lead story and interview on Ch 5 last night.
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#272247 - 03/14/08 03:02 PM Re: Who will lead the PUP? [Re: Katie Valk]
Marty Offline
Having pursued a month long campaign to replace retiring P.U.P. leader Said Musa, tonight Johnny Briceño is calling it quits. Citing what he called the unfair practices of the party hierarchy as demonstrated at yesterday's meeting at the National Party Council, Briceño told News Five's Stewart Krohn that he cannot participate in a contest that has been rigged from the start.

John Briceño, Quits Race for Party Leadership "It's a painful decision but I believe that it is the only decision that I can make. We're seeing that the process is flawed as it is and participating in that flawed process, you're only going to make it legitimate and I believe that if I were to be given a fair chance to launch my campaign and to campaign and to garner the support and if I were to lose then I could accept that. But why would you pick a fight or get into an election that you know what the result is going to be—that you are going to lose—because of the way it is settled."

Stewart Krohn "Well, there is a thing called principle. What happened to that?"

John Briceño "I think the principle starts within the party, that the principle supposed to be that it's supposed to be a free and fair election. I am saying at this time that I am resigning as the deputy party leader and I will not participate or I will withdraw my candidacy for the selection of a new party leader. What I am also saying that remain a P.U.P. I am going to continue to work for the people of Orange Walk Central. They have given me the privilege once again to represent them. I will continue to work with the other constituencies that would like to start this meaningful change. Obviously, the leadership or the people at the top are still living in denial and they don't want to make that change at the top so that we then need start—if there's going to be any meaningful change well then lets start from the bottom and go up."

Stewart Krohn "For the last month or so since the election you've been working closely with Mark Espat to try and gain the leadership for either one of you essentially. Does this mean that Mr. Espat will also be stepping down from his candidacy or is he going to continue? Do you know?"

John Briceño "I don't know at this time but in many instances Mark and I were standing up for the same things that we wanted more inclusion in the party in the decision making. We wanted to open up the party and we felt that together we can try to move some of these things that we stand for. At this time I don't know what Mark Espat is going to do or what's going to be his decision."

Stewart Krohn "Will you personally be attending the convention and would you bring your delegates with you?"

John Briceño "Well again, all of that has to be decided at this time. I mean I have to be ... continue consulting with my constituency, with the leaders in my constituency—with our executive—and I think it's too early at this time to make that type of decision."

Stewart Krohn "John, this kind of move on your part and perhaps on Mr. Espat's part is proof that the Peoples' United Party is more seriously divided than perhaps we had even realised before. Can this bode well for any particular—for any eventual return to power by the Peoples' United Party? Given this week condition?"

John Briceño "It's going to be a long and difficult road ahead of us but we have to come with meaningful change within the party. Why was I offering myself to be the leader? Because I felt that there are many issues that we needed to address; the issue of inclusion within the party, the need of letting the rank and file feel that they are the true owners of this party, the issue of women, how is it that they can meaningfully participate in the decision making of the party and not only to campaign but to be the actual leaders within the party. These are some of the things that I wanted to promote with in the party. And this whole issue, the whole principle of to serve the people, I mean some of the decisions that we have made as a government obviously were not in the best interest of the people and that is why on February the seventh they rejected us so resoundingly across this country and until we can accept that and say that we need to make these meaningful changes and go back to the issues of social justice to fight for those that need the most help, you help those that need the most help, it is going to be a long and rocky road for the P.U.P."

Stewart Krohn "You've always said or implied all along that the Peoples' United Party under the leadership of Francis Fonseca cannot be successful in elections. Let me put it conversely, can a Peoples' United Party not led by Francis Fonseca or a Peoples' United Party that does not have the support of, let us say, the old guard of the party, can that kind of party win an election?"

John Briceño "I've always felt that this party is a tent big enough to have everybody inside. It's a big family and we're going to have different factions. But at the end of the day, what's supposed to drive us is the whole principle of our service to the people. I am not here to say we don't want this one or the other but it's a matter of coming back to the base and going back to the different constituents, go to the different villages across this country where people truly believe in this party and show them how is it that they are going to benefit from the work and the belief that they have in the P.U.P. and once we can do that I am confident that we would be able to continue to win elections."

Stewart Krohn "Today's Belize Times, Godfrey Smith referred to you as, let me quote here "an intellectual light weight, someone who has difficulty with focusing, with linear thinking and in the exercise of good judgment and discretion of the three candidates, Johnny Briceño is the weakest and most prone to being manipulated". Is there room in the party for you and the former candidate who wrote these words?"

John Briceño "Well, I think that, first of all I let my record speak for itself. I've been very grateful to my parents for a good education but every cent that I have, I have earned. I have managed to start many successful businesses. I have won six elections in a row in Orange Walk. When I was in government for nine and a half years the prime minister did not see it fit to remove me from my post, from my ministry. And when you talk about judgment, when I saw a policy decision that was being made that in felt was not in the best interest of the people of this country I decided that it was more important to be on the side of the people and not on the side of the ones that are making these flawed decisions that they judgment was wrong. Right now we could look back and everybody could see that the judgment that I had was the right one. Maybe you could question his judgment."

Stewart Krohn "Let's fast forward to after the next municipal elections that are around a year from now. Let's say the P.U.P. fails to win a single municipality, things look bad for the party. At that point may John Briceño be ready to jump back into a leadership role?"

John Briceño "I think it's more important for us to be able to keep hope within the P.U.P. I am committed to the P.U.P., I am committed to the people of this party, I am committed to continue to work with them and as I have said publicly, I will continue to work not only in my constituency but in the constituencies in the Orange Walk District, in Corozal, in Cayo, in the San Pedro; wherever I am called that they want my help. And if in two years the people of this party believe that they would like me serve as their leader I would be humbled but I would accept the challenge to be able to lead this party."

Briceño has also resigned from his post as one of three deputy P.U.P. leaders. Our efforts to contact Mark Espat to learn of his convention plans were unsuccessful.

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#272984 - 03/18/08 07:36 PM Francis will lead the PUP! [Re: Marty]
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Mark Espat Withdraws from PUP Leadership Race
posted (March 17, 2008)

High stakes betters often warn, “never gamble in a game you can’t win,” and it seems Mark Espat has heeded that advice. The representative for the Albert Division today announced his decision to withdraw from the PUP race for leadership. In a feisty statement issued to the press, Espat accuses the Party Leader Said Musa of choosing Fonseca and lamented the fact that his reform proposals were rejected and concludes that, “the special-interest groups that control the party won again.” And that victory, according to Espat, disenfranchises thousands of party supporters.

Mark Espat, Withdrawing

“The special-interest groups that control the Party won again. Their victory guarantees the exclusion of the vast majority of PUP supporters from choosing their leader. The sad truth is that even when the Party loses, the special interest groups still win. They don’t suffer being in Opposition, as our rank and file members do - they simply return to their law firms and businesses, safe from the jaws of victimization; their quality of life remains the same while many PUP’s suffer for their mistakes.

Party Leader Said Musa announced his resignation on 13 February 2008. Prior even to his announcement, he and a tiny cabal have been doing everything possible to anoint Francis Fonseca as the new P.U.P. leader.

Two sons of Party Leader Said Musa, one as the Public Relations Director for the Party and the other as Secretary General, have openly campaigned for Fonseca, sullying the offices they were gifted. It is this same Secretary General who is to manage the leadership election on 30th March. It is abundantly clear that no tactic is too low to ensure the crowning of Francis Fonseca as P.U.P. leader.

Under circumstances, I will not offer myself for leader in a closed, undemocratic and fixed convention. I know that my decision will disappoint so many PUPs across the country. But I do not seek to become leader of our Party at a convention that denies the 6:40 right to vote to 99% of those who voted for the P.U.P. in the last general election.”

Espat declined interviews and referred us to his statement which will air in its entirety later on in the newscast. So what does this mean for the upcoming special convention in Belmopan on March 30th. Well, it will proceed, but it will be an endorsement convention for the new leader of the PUP, Francis Fonseca. And while he’s no longer in a competitive race, Fonseca’s campaign manager Godfrey Smith says his candidate will continue his countrywide consultations.

http://www.7newsbelize.com/sstory.php?nid=10727
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#274746 - 03/31/08 01:56 AM Re: Johnny is the new party leader! [Re: Short]
belizegial Offline
The convention is over and Johnny Briceno is the new party leader of the PUP.

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#274752 - 03/31/08 04:41 AM Re: Johnny is the new party leader! [Re: belizegial]
Short Offline
PUP returns to Grassroots.
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#274787 - 03/31/08 04:57 PM Re: Johnny is the new party leader! [Re: Short]
Happy Birthday Sir Isaac Newton Offline
Excellent.
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