Frequently Asked Questions
In this area of our site, you will find the answers to the frequently asked questions, as well as answers to How do I and Did you know questions. Select a category from below.
What is Boundary Redistricting?
The term boundary re-districting or boundary de-limitation is used interchangeably and is defined as:
- To fix the limits of electoral boundaries
- To alter electoral boundaries
What is the Legal Framework for Boundary Redistricting?
The legal framework is set out in Section 90 of the Belize Constitution:
- Section 90 (1) (a) states, “Each electoral division shall have as nearly as may be, an equal number of persons eligible to vote”.
- Section 90 (1) (b) states that total number of electoral divisions should not be less than 28
- Section 90 (2) states that in fixing boundaries, regard is to be given to transport, physical features, other facilities of the electoral division
Who decides on Boundary Redistricting?
- The National Assembly makes the final decision.
- The Elections and Boundaries Commission makes proposals to the National Assembly.
- The National Assembly may accept all or part of the proposal submitted by the Elections and Boundaries Commission.
Can there be less electoral divisions in the country?
In accordance with Section 90 (1) of the Constitution of Belize the total number of electoral divisions shall be not less than thirty-one (31)
(Increase of Electoral Division Act II of 2005)
When will the new electoral boundaries come into effect?
Section 91 of the Belize Constitution states that any redistricting of electoral divisions effected in accordance with Section 90 of the Belize Constitution shall in respect of the election of members of the House of Representatives come into operation at the next general election held after such re-division and not earlier.
When will the public be made aware of the new electoral divisions?
After the re-districting becomes Law, the Chief Elections Officer is to:
- Adjust the electoral register of the electoral divisions affected
- Compile new registers of electors if there are new electoral divisions
- Within 90 days publish provisional registers
The Law (Representation of The People Act) provides for 10 days for electors to make corrections and objections to names in the Provisional Registers.
Facts About The Election Management Bodies of Belize
What is The Elections and Boundaries Commission?
Section 88 (13) (14) of the Constitution of Belize states:
(13) The Commission shall be responsible for the direction and supervision of the registration of voters and the conduct of elections, referenda and all matters connected therewith.
(14) In the exercise of its functions, the Commission shall not be subject to the direction or control of any person or authority and shall, subject to the provisions of this Constitution, act in accordance with the Representation of the People Act or any other law, rule or regulation relating to elections.
The Chairperson and members of the Commission are:
- 1. Mr. Estevan Perrera – Chairman
- 2. Ms. Naima Barrow – Member
- 3. Mrs. Philippa Griffith Bailey – Member
- 4. Mr. Orlando Espat – Member
- 5. Mrs. Magali Marin Young – Member
- 6. Mrs. Josephine Tamai
What is The Elections and Boundaries Department?
The Elections and Boundaries Department is a government departmen. It is administered by a Chief Elections Officer is responsible for the day to day electoral management on behalf of the Elections and Boundaries Commission who as per the Representation of the People Act: The main duties and functions includes Administrative Provision, Elections, Continuous Registration, Election Rules, Adjustment of Electoral Records in Re-division.
The Staff of Elections and Boundaries Department are public officers as defined by the Belize Constitution whose conduct is governed by the Public Service Regulations and, where appropriate, the General Workers Rule. The Chief Elections Officer is also the Head of the Department.
Why register to vote?
There are 31 electoral divisions, 7 towns, 2 cities, 191 villages and communities. Only registered voters have the right to elect Political Leaders at the National and Municipal level.
Who is eligible to Register to Vote?
Every person who is:
- 18 years of age or over
- A citizen of Belize, any Commonwealth Country who has ordinarily resided in Belize for not less than 12 months or any Commonwealth Country who is domiciled in Belize
- Resident in the electoral division for a period of not less than 2 months
Where to register?
Visit the Registration Office of Elections and Boundaries Department in your Area. Fourteen District Offices countrywide are manned by Registration Officers and one Sub Office.
How do you become registered?
1. Make a personal application
a. Take proof of eligibility to the Registration Office in your area-
– Birth Certificate
– Naturalization Certificate
b. Fill out and sign Application Form and Record Card
c. Take a photograph for the ID Card and the Record Card
2. An Investigation is carried out by Registration Officers to verify residence and other particulars.
3. A temporary list of applicants called “Supplementary List” is prepared by the Registering Officer for public scrutiny from 15th to the 25th of the month. These are posted at all Registration Offices.
4. If there are objections during the 15th to the 25th, the following is completed before proceeding to Revision Court:
– The persons objected to, are informed by registered mail
– The names of the persons objected to, are published in one newspaper and the Gazette
5. The Revising Officer in a Revision Court approves the Supplementary List at the end of each month.
6. A Revised List is prepared. Only those on the Revised List become Registered Electors. The Revision Court is the sole authority to decide who will remain on the monthly Revised List.
7. ID Cards are issued to those on the Revised List approximately one week after the Revision Court.
What is the Cycle for Voter Registration?
The process of registration is continuous and it is conducted every working day. The process for a month is closed on the 10th in order to prepare the Temporary or Supplementary List for the 15th as required by law.
The Monthly Cycle is from the 11th of one month to the 10th of the other, for example:
August – 11th of July to the 10th of August
July – 11th of June to the 10th of July
– If a person applies on or before the 10th June, the process will be completed with June’s Revision Court at the end of June.
– If a person applies on the 11th of June or later, the process will be completed with July’s Revision Court at the end of July.
A Revised List is posted in all Registration Offices on or before the 5th of the month or immediatly after Revision Court. Copies of all monthly transactions are shared with the two major Political Parties.
What about the Revision Court?
The monthly Revision is held at the Magistrate Courts in all five District Towns and the Cities of Belmopan and Belize. Each Revision Court session is presided over by a Magistrate at the end of every month. The Court has until the 5th day of the following month to complete its determination of all matters.
Who sets the Revision Court date?
Registration Officers and or the Chief Elections Officer based on the legal requirements and the schedule of each Magistrate.
Spoilt and Rejected Ballots
What is a Spoilt Ballot?
A spoilt ballot is a ballot that voter involuntarily make an error upon marking his/her vote and returns it to the Presiding Officer. The cancellation is done by the Presiding Officer. A spoilt ballot is not placed into the ballot box nor does it counted as a vote. The spoilt ballot is then marked cancelled across it.
What is a rejected ballot?
What is a rejected ballot?
What are the reasons to reject a ballot?
There are five (5) reasons that ballot are rejected.
- The ballot paper does not have the Presiding Officer’s initials on the back of it
- The voter votes for more candidates than seats that are to be filled
- The ballot paper is not marked for any candidate
- The ballot paper contains any mark or writing that can identify the voter
- The ballot paper is unmarked or void for uncertainty
Who Are Belize's Elected current Leaders?
Who Are Belize’s Elected current Leaders?