In an executive meeting held today, Friday, October 07, 2011, in Belize City, John Briceño announced that he is stepping down from his position as leader of the People’s United Party (PUP) but gave no reasons as per his decision. He stated that Mr. Mark Espat has been appointed interim Leader of the PUP and that a convention will be held at a later date to elect a new leader for the party.
John Briceño thanked his supporters that were behind him throughout his almost four-year leadership of the PUP and commented that he felt privileged and honored to have served as the party leader.
Prime Minister of Belize, Hon. Dean Barrow, expressed his respect for Briceño’s decision, wished him well and thanked him for his service as leader of the opposition for the PUP. Mr. Briceño’s released the following statement about his stepping down:
Message from Mr. John Briceño
“Today at the National Executive meeting I announced my resignation as Party Leader of the Peoples’ United Party. Consequent to my announcement, the National Executive decided that the Hon. Mark Espat serve as acting Party Leader in the interim.
Over the past few months, I have been battling with my health issues and it will require me having periodic visits aboard for treatment.
In the months to come, as we prepare for Municipal and National elections, the party will require its party leader and all its National Leaders to work at a full 100% of their capacity. After consulting with my doctors, they have advised that I would be unable to dedicate the amount of time needed to head the party to victory.
These are crucial elections that the party must win. The direction that the present government is taking our country is a bad one- from record unemployment, a collapsing economy and crime spiraling out of control. This is not the Belize that Belizeans deserves and only a PUP government can save Belize.
It is because of this that I will continue my work as the Orange Walk Central Area Representative and PUP Standard Bearer. It has been a great honor to be the leader of the greatest political party in Belize, the Peoples’ United Party. I need to thank the members of the National Executive and the thousands of supporters across the country who have given me their unqualified support. I will be forever grateful for all your support during my time as Party Leader.
The PUP is poised to win the next Municipal and National Elections. Let’s roll up our sleeves and continue the noble work of saving Belize.
Long live the Peoples’ United Party. My God bless Belize.”
Mr. Mark Espat appointed interim leader of the PUP