Highlights — 26 November 2013 — by Adele Ramos
PUP finish collecting petition signatures to oust Penner

Orlando “Landy” Habet, the Opposition People’s United Party (PUP) hopeful for Cayo North East who wants to unseat Elvin Penner—the United Democratic Party (UDP) area representative for that electoral division who has been at the center of a passport scandal—in a recall vote, told Amandala today that they have collected more than the required signatures to push for a new election in the constituency.

Habet said that an estimated 2,100 signatures have been collected – which is close to 40% of the registered voters in the division. He reports that there are 5,800 registered voters. Under law, a petition must be supported by 30% of those voters to trigger a recall vote.

However, that petition request must be submitted to the Government, and will undergo a verification exercise via the Elections and Boundaries Department. If the Government is satisfied that the petition is in order, the vote will be triggered.

Habet had lost to Penner in the 2012 General Elections by only 17 votes, and there was widespread suspicion over whether that razor-thin margin truly registered the will of the constituents, in light of claims that Guatemalans were being given Belizean nationality in order to vote in those elections.

According to Habet, the Opposition is expected to announce an update on the recall petition early next week.

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