A two-time UDP Councilor and cousin to Minister Manuel Heredia Junior will be challenging the UDP’s Belize Rural South seat in an upcoming UDP Convention. Councillor Gary Grief, the younger cousin of Minister Heredia, received a call from the party’s chairman on Saturday, informing him that his application to represent the UDP in Belize Rural South was approved. While Grief has told the media that he believes the internal process of challenging a four-term area representative is a healthy one, Minister Heredia is not too fond of the idea. According to Heredia, his cousin, Councilor Gary Grief, is trying to run before he can crawl, and will meet the end of his political career.
Hon. Jose Manuel Heredia Jr., Minister of Tourism and Civil Aviation: You know, there is a time for everything and the young generation today sometimes believe that they should start…, that you start running before you creep, you know. And many times they’ve been proven wrong, that you’ll have to creep, walk, then run and then finally you get to a certain point. And I must say very clearly that this party in San Pedro, the United Democratic Party, that if you ask anybody or take a poll I San Pedro, they will tell you that it was myself together with a small group that was the pioneer over there. But I was the one that actually made this party win for the first time over there and I have been repeatedly winning over and over. And when you speak that you are not crowned a king when you are elected, it’s an insult to our prime minister, to our members, to senior members like Finigan. They have been there for many years and there is a time when I will decide when to step down and at that point I will support anybody that comes around. But if you want to come in without the support of our executive, without the support of myself, you are for a disaster, you are looking to probably finalize your career before you start. And then my advice to any young person, man get advice, those that do not seek advice will never succeed.
Hon. Jose Manuel Heredia Jr., Minister of Tourism and Civil Aviation: The media can just go around in San Pedro talking to all sectors of the community: the younger sector, the middle aged and the older ones. There is everybody who will tell you, most people who will tell you that I am the person at this point. And there are many that believe, a huge sector believe that whenever I decide to step down that will be the beginning of the end of this party. Even the People’s United Party will tell you that, they strongly believe because they have seen from all counts of elections, municipal and general, that it is Manuel Heredia and not so much the party that is the person that is liked you know. And then at this point, I had almost decided to step aside. It’s the business community, it’s my people, it’s my executives that asked me to please come on board. It’s my colleagues in cabinet that said ‘boy we need your sit, and that sit is a sure sit once you contest in this election’ and that is the reason why I decided to run.