On Thursday morning, with just the stroke of Her Excellency Froyla Tzalam’s pen, Hon Patrick Faber was officially reinstated as the Leader of the Opposition for the United Democratic Party (UDP) at the Belize House in Belmopan and just in time for him to deliver his Independence Day Address.
Following the official ceremony which was attended by family, friends, and UDP members, Faber described his sentiments, to the UDP’s television Station, “Well it is a feeling that I have experienced already, so it is kind of bittersweet because it is that we have come back to this place that I have been already and we come back after some turmoil in our party. I am hoping that it will now be fixed. So for me, it is bittersweet because of the turmoil but it is sweet because we now get a chance to do this properly and ensure that our party is united and also that the work of defending this nation is now more fervent than ever and that is my commitment.”
UDP insiders have informed the Reporter that over the weekend the UDP held a secret meeting where Faber was able to sway Hon. Tracy Taegar Panton’s vote in his favor and, thereby, unseating the Hon. Moses “Shyne” Barrow, who was appointed to the post roughly two months ago. Panton’s vote was crucial to Faber’s success and on Tuesday, September 14th, Faber, armed with his signature and those of Panton and the Hon. Hugo Patt, hand-delivered the letter to the Governor General’s Office in Belmopan.
That letter informed the Governor-General that Faber commands the support of the majority of the Opposition Member and that Barrow no longer enjoyed their support. The letter reads, “In the circumstances, we crave your urgent intervention pursuant to subsection 47 (4) and 47 (5) of the Constitution to remove Hon. Barrow from the office he now holds and to replace him with the Hon. Patrick Faber who satisfies the constitutional requirement for appointment as indicated herein.”
Shortly after a copy of the letter was leaked to the media, Barrow released a statement which indicated that he was bowing out of the post gracefully and that he held no bad feeling that the majority of the Elected Opposition Members of the House had elected a new Leader of the Opposition, and thereby replacing him.
Following his swearing-in, the newly sworn-in Leader of the Opposition and UDP Party Leader, informed, “We are having a press conference tomorrow morning, where we hope to discuss the recent issues of the party and the fact that we are now one unified party as opposed to some of the splintering that was happening this year. We, intend to make that clear because there is a lot of speculation and misinformation that has been going around and so we hope to clear all of that up and disclose all of our plans for the United Democratic Party.”
Faber, who we are being told reconciled his rocky relationship with former Area Representative for Belmopan John Saldivar, said that he is committed to keeping the UDP, united and to serve as a watchdog for the government.