The United Democratic Party (UDP) has opted to not have social events or any motorcade on nomination day. Usually both major parties rally their supporters with lively social events but due to Covid-19 these events can be detrimental as they can be super spreaders. Today the UDP held a virtual press conference where the Party leader Patrick Faber stated that the party will do the bare minimum for nomination day to ensure that their candidates are nominated.
Hon. Patrick Faber, Leader, United Democratic Party: “The reason we have chosen to do this and we want to make it absolutely clear is merely out of an abundance of caution for the health situation that exists at this time. We understand that the opposition is proposing to put off some motorcades and other activities, we feel that these activities go contrary to the health regulations, the health expectations of any responsible mass party or any other entity at this time and so we have decided that we will just do the minimum that is required that is taking our six electors to go and nominate our candidates at the various different nomination stations across the country. We believe that while I think nobody can doubt that the UDP can muster the large crowds that we have been known to muster on nomination day I think all will agree with me and with the party that this is absolutely not the safest thing to do at this time. This party has ben hit very hard as well as the nation in fact by COVID-19. You know that we have had at least two of our candidates who have tested positive for COVID-19 in fact you’re well aware as well that at least two very close family members of officials of our party have died as a result of COVID-19.”
According to Faber there are some within the party who are in disagreement with the decision to hold it down.
Hon. Patrick Faber, Leader, United Democratic Party: “Well I think that we did not come to any such agreement that there would not be activity outside of the basic requirement of nomination so it is not a decision that we made with the Elections and Boundaries not to have motorcades. In fact I’ll tell you in our party it was a struggle because there are some who absolutely believe that this is the way to go however again what trumps all that kind of feeling, the need to pump up our supporters is the fact that we have to be a very responsible party as well and we suspect that an activity or any activities like this may well get out of hand and the activities themselves however subdued in their planning will create opportunities for the spread of COVID-19 and we’re absolutely against that kind of spread or contribution to the spread from our UDP. For election day I think it is the same we have agreed that we will try to do the minimum in terms of gathering, in terms of celebrating in the open streets and in the large gatherings because again this is something that can cause us in the longer run to be very sorry given the very very creeping effect of the spread of COVID-19 and the toll it has already taken on us.”
Two weeks ago, the UDP’s Corozal Southeast Standard Bearer Tony Herrera was diagnosed with COVID-19. According to Party leader Faber Herrera was swabbed on Saturday and they are waiting for his results which will conclude tomorrow. He says that if Herrera tests negative, he will be able to go to the Nomination station in person. If not, Herrera is in communication with the Chief Elections Officer for a possible alternative.