Governor General dissolves National Assembly
Today the Governor General, Sir Colville Young, will dissolve the bicameral National Assembly following the announcement on Tuesday to call a general election.
Prime Minister Dean Barrow, in his announcement, said that polling day would be on 7th March for both the general election and municipal elections. This is a year earlier than constitutionally required for the parliamentary elections. Nomination day will be on 17th February.
In the 7th February 2008 election, the then opposition United Democratic Party (UDP) defeated the incumbent People’s United Party (PUP), with the UDP taking 25 of the 31 seats in the House of Representatives to PUPs six seats.
The other house in the bicameral National Assembly, the Senate, has twelve appointed members, chosen after the general election.
The prime minister’s statement is published in full in the Belize Guardian (the UDPs official newspaper) in which he states that:
“We therefore ask for your clear instructions to drive the naysayers back; to do something about the super bond; to overhaul the tax code and further spur economic growth; to reform the public sector and make open vote workers part of the established staff; to roll out NHI countrywide in a sustainable manner; to eliminate financial uncompetitiveness; to lower interest rates and to establish a national bank; to rationalize the sugar and citrus industries for immediate viability and longer-term prosperity; and to realign existing ministries and create new ones in order to maximize efficiency”.