The UDP has confirmed the date for its National Convention. Its National Party Council met on Saturday and confirmed that Sunday February 9th, 2020 will be the day when the party selects a new leader.

As has been widely reported, current deputy Patrick Faber and John Saldivar will be vying for the posts.

But while it is a party matter, it is also of wider national significance because it likely means that party leader and Prime Minister Dean Barrow will be stepping down earlier than expected.

Sources suggest that he could exit office and hand over the reigns to the new leader - and presumptive Prime Minister - within a month of the national convention - that would be the first week of March 2020. This would likely mean that whoever is selected as party leader - Faber or Saldivar - would then have the task of presenting the next budget for the 2019-20 fiscal year.

It's notable because in November of 2018, a super majority of Cabinet Ministers asked Prime Minister Barrow to stay on as PM right up until just before the next general election - which is expected in November of 2020. All Information suggests that timeline has been scrapped and the Prime Minister will leave earlier than expected.

This makes the race for the party next leader even more fierce, since, foreseeably, that persons could hold over as Prime Minister for 9 months to finish out this term of office. We'll keep watching it closely.

Channel 7