The United Democratic Party had a press conference this afternoon to look at its party’s protocols and guidelines for Nomination Day on October 21. We’ll tell you more about that later on. For now, we go to the Police Commissioner Chester Williams who explained what the do’s and don’t’s are for Nomination Day on Wednesday.
Chester Williams, Commissioner of Police: “We have discussed nomination day with all political parties and we have agreed in term so of how we’re going to police nomination day and as I said to both of them that while yes they may want to be able to show their political might and have a triumphant motorcade to nomination center we must be mindful of what could happen subsequent to nomination day which will be a mass spread of the coronavirus and we must even be more meticulous when it comes to the northern part of the country and Belize City because those are the two areas where we’re seeing an increase or several clusters of the coronavirus spreading. And so I have asked them to work with us, we will allow them to do certain things, we’ll allow them to have their motorcade but at the end of the day we have discussed the protocols in terms of how they’re going to operate, the fact that everybody in the vehicles must wear a mask, the fact that the vehicles must only be allowed to carry passengers based on its legal capacity and when they reach nomination center the only persons who’ll be allowed to alight any of the vehicles will be the candidate and his or her nominators. All other persons must remain inside their vehicles and they’re going to provide the police with the route of the motorcade and along the motorcade they’re not allowed to stop nowhere. They must drive along their route and go to where they expect the motorcade to come to an end and people will then be allowed to get out of the vehicles in an orderly manner so as not to have at any given time too many persons in one area. So we’re going to see how that works out and I would trust and hope that the political parties are going to be responsible enough to act in accordance with what we have agreed upon. If it is that there is a violation and we have vehicles that have excess passengers or persons not complying with the quarantine regulations then people will just have to be arrested and we’re hoping that we don’t have to get to that stage but the safety of our Belizean people is paramount and from a law enforcement standpoint we are going to ensure of that.”
A meeting was had last Friday, led by the Chief Elections Officer Josephine Tamai including aspiring candidates for all political parties. In that meeting the rules for Nomination Day were laid out with the Covid-19 regulations in mind. For the first time, nominations will take place in the all 31 divisions across the country. Love News will have highlights throughout the course of the day.