Yesterday both national and municipal elections were held country wide and while there was much anticipation awaiting the big news of who will form the next Central Government and who will be sent to Town Hall, Orange Walk Town was as vibrant as ever. When the polls opened at 7:00 am voters were already anxiously waiting in line to cast their votes, something not seen during the last Municipal Election.
100 yards away from the polling areas both UDP and PUP supporters stood by raising their flags in confidence. But it was too early to tell who would run the affairs of the town.
Throughout the rest of the day voters came out at a steady pace at all four areas. In Orange Walk East the momentum kept building and as the hours went by both the blue team led by Kevin Bernard and the red team headed by Ivan Leiva watched as voters exercised their democratic right. When we spoke to a number of voters off camera the sentiment was that the process was way too slow.
At 5:30, half an hour before the polling stations were declared closed, people were still in line waiting to cast their vote and campaigners of both the blue and the red camp scampered to grab hold of last minute voters. At exactly 6:00pm the voting areas were declared closed as police stood behind the last person in line.
Here in Orange Walk the counting for the Municipal Elections took place at La Inmaculada School. Results were hard to come by but when they did all indications were that the blue team was ahead. And that is how it stayed, never once did the UDP slate take the lead.
At 2:30 this morning after the last ballot was counted word spread that the seven municipal seats were won by the Blue Team.
Numbers indicate that Kevin Bernard received 4,354 votes, Rozel Arana 4,621 votes, Ian Cal 4422 votes, Josue Carballo 4559, Neri Ramirez 4369 votes, Ladrick Sheppard 4771 votes and Jose Urbina 4433 votes. As for the UDP candidates Ivan Leiva received 3712 votes, Francine Burns 3866 votes, Albert Dawson 3685 votes, Fiona Liu 3820 votes, Leon Palacio 3730 votes, Carlos Peralta 3625 votes and Charles Slusher 3603 votes.
In Orange Walk town there were a total of 11,082 registered voters of which 64% casted their votes yesterday proving to be high ratings as opposed to past elections.
While Orange Walk Town was blue all over, in Corozal Town the Municipal Election was won by the UDP, Belize City UDP, Dangriga PUP, Benque Viejo Del Carmen UDP, San Ignacio and Santa Elena UDP. In San pedro it was a split council with 6 UDP and 1UDP, in Belmopan Split council with 5 UDP and 2 PUP and in Punta Gorda another split council with 6 pup and 1 UDP.
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