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Shyne and Tracy to Go Head to Head Come Sunday

Come Sunday, five hundred and sixteen delegates of the United Democratic Party (UDP) will be electing either Mesopotamia’s Moises “Shyne” Barrow or Albert’s Tracy Taeger Panton as the new Party Leader. The national convention, which is the party’s third in a little over two years, will be held at the Bird’s Isle in Belize City. According to UDP Party Chairman, Michael Peyrefitte, the groundwork has been laid to ensure a smooth voting process.
Hon. Michael Peyrefitte, UDP, Chairman: 10 a.m. the regular vote starts to be polled and then 2:00 alternates will come and vote in place of those delegates who did not vote between 10 and 2. We have 516 delegates who are supposed to vote and we have it divided into three different polling stations. If you like, I think it’s A – E and then F to, you know, whatever to Z, with each box containing roughly about ⅓ of the 516. We expect it to be smooth. We have no campaigning or no movements or no gatherings after the bridge that leads you into the Bird’s Isle onto the island. So you vote, you leave and that’s what we want. We want to make sure that we have the protocols being adhered to as it may relate to COVID. It’s an open air so the mask is not mandatory but we’re still telling people to take all possible precautions to protect themselves and their fellow members of the UDP.”

In the course of the last few weeks, the campaign from both the Barrow and Panton camps have been rather quiet. Unlike the previous two conventions, there was an absence of billboards, media ads and the likes. According to UDP Chairman, Michael Peyrefitte, the lack of a strong campaign effort leading up to this national convention was due to an agreement made by both candidates to refrain from the usual mudslinging seen in past conventions.
Hon. Michael Peyrefitte, UDP, Chairman: “There has been mass campaigning. It’s just that, in my view, it has been more of a mature campaign. I think both candidates realise that the nasty campaigns of the past don’t help the party and they both, I think, have the best interests of the party and the country at heart. So they have decided to run a very mature campaign and both of them are to be congratulated for that. So, it’s not that it hasn’t been happening, it’s just that we are also always too accustomed to bad campaigns, or nasty campaigns and this time we made sure we had a very mature one. We called in the candidates before they officially put their names in because we heard that they had done that and we had a good discussion. We agreed on certain protocols and I’m glad to see that both of them, for the most part, observed those protocols.”

Peyrefitte said the vote count should be finished by five o’clock Sunday afternoon.