Since the end of August, we've been waiting for the PUP to announce who the party's Mayoral Candidate for the Belize City is.
That deadline was pushed to the end of October, and now, it's 4 days past that self-imposed deadline. And so today, the PUP announced what everyone knew about a month ago: their candidate for mayor is Yolanda Schakron. So, what's with all the secrecy, when pretty much everyone we already knew who it was going to be? That's what we asked PUP leader Francis Fonseca. Here's what he had to say:
Hon. Francis Fonseca, Leader of the Opposition
"I said a very long time ago that we would make the announcement at the end of October. I made that very clear a long time ago. We have now passed, so you have every right to chastise me - we are passed the end of October and yes again that is an announcement that we will make hopefully later this week. We have finalize our team. We have finalize our slate, yes so our mayoral candidate will be Mrs. Yolanda Schakron. We have finalize the 10 other members of that team and we will make that announcement very shortly."
So, now that the public secret is out, what does the Mayoral Aspirant has to say? We'll we got a chance to ask her about her candidacy against a Mayor who has 130 paved streets to show for his time in office. Here's what she had to say:
Yolanda Schakron - PUP Mayoral Candidate, Belize City
"I am not at all intimidated. As you can see the work that Darrell has done speaks for itself, I mean we are not getting the value for the money. We see all the streets are breaking up and we don't know how we are going to fix these streets. He is saying now that we are going to have to go into get more money to fix these streets and it's not fair to us the tax payers for this to be happening. I think there needs to be transparency, accountability in the City Council because things are hard nowadays; we the business people, everything keeps going up and it's not right. This city is not a great as people are saying. I have started to walk the city and it's in a mess. We have to have accountability man, we can't just take the money from the public and spend it like it is our money. It's not, it's not the mayor's money and the other thing, why is the mayor working a full time job when he should be the mayor? You are being paid to be the mayor of this city, that's what you should be doing."
Geovannie Brackett, reporter
"Are you concern that maybe a late start, you have until March and it's a late start. You concern of the timeframe first of all?"
"I am not at all concern. I have never stop working in the south side, I've have never stop working in the city. I have been out there already actually walking and talking to people. I actually made this decision because a lot of people came up to me and ask me to take the challenge and I did I will take this challenge. I am not afraid, I think we have enough time."
"Now you tried to launch your political career before and it has failed, so how has that affected your new attempt because you were trying for standard bearer and that went out the door, we remember how that went. So how does that affected your approach this time around?"
"It hasn't affected me at all. It hadn't fail. I can tell you that that if I had ran I would have beaten Mark King easily. It hasn't failed, I think I am much more mature now in the political aspect of everything. I have learned a lot."
The Party's Eastern Caucus will announce the full PUP slate later this week.