Dean Russell Lindo was born September 4th, 1932 and passed away earlier today at the age of 86. He graduated from New York University and Durham University in England and has practiced law since 1964. Lindo was one of the founders of the United Democratic Party (UDP) in 1973. He served as UDP leader from 1974 to 1979. His first foray into politics was as a member of the National Independence Party (NIP) in the Fort George Division. His career can be compared to some of boxing’s greatest fights, like the Foreman/Ali fight. He has the distinction of being the only man to beat PUP’s Said Musa in a General Election while also recording some losses against. Lindo was elected from Fort George in 1974, defeating PUP’s Said Musa by 46 votes.In 1979, Lindo lost his seat to Musa by 71 votes. Lindo regained the Fort George seat in 1984, defeating Musa by 57 votes, but lost again to Musa in 1989by 449 votes. Here’s a short clip of Lindo reflecting on the formation of the UDP.
Dean Lindo: “By this time I wasn’t NIP I was PDM. Well we decided eventually that it didn’t make sense to be fighting separately. We better join forces because it was divide and conquer so that they could split up the three parties that were divided and then we join NIP and PDM joined then eventually the liberals joined us. That was how we formed the UDP.”
Lindo, the man who built the house called the UDP, also had an impact in the formative years of long time Mesopotamia area representative, Michael Finnegan. In the past, Finnegan had called him one of the best at politics and the total package. Love News spoke to Finnegan via phone about the loss of the senior UDP statesman.
Michael Finnegan: “Mr. Lindo is the person who revitalized the opposition in the early 70’s. He was the person who brought back life to the opposition and help to make the United Democratic Party what it is today.”
Jose Sanchez: “That’s a big history, how grave is the loss? I know I mean ofcourse you mourn the loss of his life but tell us about the loss to the party and to the country. “
Michael finnegan: “Well I think it United Democratic Party, it is great loss to the country and thd the United Democratic Party now has a lack of his skills, his experiences, talent, his contribution, we will have it no more. There will be no longer that sound valuable advice from him. You will have to live on what you can remember and all the things he had taught us, especially me.”
Jose sanchez: “and what are some of the things you have gathered from him that help assisted with your career?”
Michael Finnegan: “How to win elections and what to do to win elections.”
Jose Sanchez: “So you do have a lot of fun memories?”
Michael Finnegan: “A Lot of fun memories so if I would start to tell you I wouldn’t be able to stop. I would probably leave it for the eulogy.”
In 2009, Dean Lindo was honored at the Tribute to Belizean Patriots. One of the highest honor went to the former UDP representative for contributions to the development of party politics in Belize.