A press briefing regarding the Recall Referendum Petition for Cayo Northeast was held today in Belize City. As we've reported the petition failed because the People’s United Party came 79 approved signatures short of meeting the threshold. Although being thoroughly condemned by the Opposition, the media and civil society, the dishonored former minister of state Elvin Penner, has not faced any criminal charges for allegedly facilitating a visa for an international fugitive. And today, the final recall petition results show that 5,815 are the total registered electors for that constituency and 2002 signatures were submitted.
The threshold that would trigger a recall is 1,744; which make up 30 percent of the electorate. The final statistics reveal that 1,665 signatures were accepted; 52 signatures did not match the petitioners ID, 52 signatures are of those not registered in Cayo Northeast, 52 signatures were not registered, 11 had no signature, 79 petitioners names were submitted twice and 4 signed their names three times which brought the total to 2002. Total rejected signatures were 337 which represent 16.83% of the electorate in the division.
So where does that leave Penner? Safe, to say for now, as he will continue to enjoy the perks as area representative and receive a salary of over a hundred thousand dollars a year, still gets to keep his government issued vehicle and enjoy health insurance perks, even amidst the controversy.
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