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Ceremonial Opening for the National Assembly

Prime Minister Dean Barrow is now serving his third term as the country’s leader.  Today in Belmopan all thirty one newly elected Julius Espat Sworn Inrepresentatives were on hand for the inaugural sitting of the House of Representatives. We have more in this report by Ava Diaz Sosa.


“Hundreds of Belizeans made their way to Belmopan for the ceremonial sitting of the House of Representatives. Under overcast skies the supporters showed up to see their newly elected representatives take their oath of office. Prior to the official start of the sitting which took place at the steps of the National Assembly guests were entertained by the music of the Garifuna Collective. Prime Minister Dean Barrow inspected the guard of honor mounted by members of the Belize Defense Force. The speaker of the House Michael Peyrefitte was once against worn in. The clerk of the national assembly Eddy Webster then administered the oath of office to all 31 representatives as they swore to carry out their duty without fear or favor. As per usual Governor General Sir. Colville Young read the government speech which highlighted some of the government’s accomplishments over the last term and highlighted the focus of the term 2015 to 2020.”


“Much has been achieved during the last two terms of office. My government will continue to focus on policies designed to advance economic growth, social development, infrastructural expansion, strengthening of National Security, expanded educational opportunities and improved health care, support citizen security and foster agricultural development.”


“Prime Minister Dean Barrow then made a statement in which he urged all elected members to work together for the development of the country.”


“Prime Minister Dean Barrow: As critical as all elections are and this election was what happens after the elections matters just as much as what happens at the elections. The party banners are being lowered and the poster colors of red and blue and green will soon fade and as a we put away the paraphernalia of one “p” it is time to embrace that other “p”, the “p” we should value most the “p” that stands for the people. On Wednesday November 4th there was  vote for action, all of us red and blue were elected to look after the interest of our constituents, not our own and as we focus on the future these are the questions we must ask ourselves “into what conditions are our children being born , how are they to be nurtured in their early years, will they have access to the best schools and the best teachers, what jobs and pay will their  parents receive, are their communities getting safer and more productive; will their grandparents retire with dignity and respect and will these children inherit a nation of patriots ready to sacrifice all in the defense of national sovereignty? For this new national assembly there can only be one way to answer. We must ensure and we must guarantee the progress and the commitment and the advances and the improvement that the circumstances of our people and the needs of our  beloved Belize press so urgently upon.”

National Assembly openingThe Senate also held its inaugural session where Senators were sworn in. Lee Mark Chang is the President of the Senate while Attorneys Lisa Shoman and Anthony Sylvester Junior along with Jason Patrick Andrews will represent the Opposition. Mark Lizzaraga returns as the senator for the Business community.  Godwin Hulse remains as the leader of Government business in the Senate. The other Government senators are Dr. Carla Barnett, Attorneys Aldo Salazar and Francine Burns, Banker Steve Duncan and educator Macario Coy. Baptist Pastor Ashley Rocke is now the Senator for the churches. It has not been decided who the representatives for the Union will be.