Francis Fonseca

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Francis Fonseca
Leader of the Opposition
In office
3 November 2011 – 31 January 2016
MonarchElizabeth II
Governor GeneralColville Young
Prime MinisterDean Barrow
Preceded byJohnny Briceño
Succeeded byJohnny Briceño
Member of the Belize House of Representatives for Freetown
Assumed office
5 March 2003
Preceded byJorge Espat
Personal details
Born
Francis William Fonseca

(1967-03-11) 11 March 1967 (age 52)
Belize City, British Honduras
(now Belize)
Political partyPeople's United Party
ResidenceBelize City, Belize
Alma materSt. John's College
University of Southwestern Louisiana
University of the West Indies

Francis William Fonseca (born 11 March 1967) is a Belizean politician who is the current Member of Parliament (MP) for Freetown constituency since 5 March 2003. He previously served as leader of the People's United Party (PUP) and as Leader of the Opposition of Belize from 2011 to 2016.[1] First elected to the Belize House of Representatives in 2003, Fonseca served as Attorney General and Minister of Education, Culture and Labour in Prime Minister Said Musa's cabinet from 6 March 2003 until 9 February 2008, when the PUP lost the general election to the opposition United Democratic Party (UDP). Fonseca also served as the Chairman of the People's United Party (PUP) from 6 March 2003 to 22 February 2008. Fonseca was one of only six PUP area representatives nationwide to retain his seat in the National Assembly in the 2008 election.[2]

Following the election defeat and subsequent resignation of Musa as prime minister and PUP leader on 30 March 2008, the party held a 2008 People's United Party (Belize) leadership election and convention to select its new leader. The party held it's nomination day on 21 February 2008 and the actual day for it's leadership election and convention on 30 March 2008. Fonseca along with second deputy leader of the PUP, Johnny Briceño stood as candidates for the party leadership at the convention, Fonseca was nominated by the United Woman's Group and several other constituency committees including Cayo West, Cayo North, Cayo South, Pickstock, Dangriga, Stann Creek West, Toledo East and Toledo West. Fonseca was thought to be the candidate preferred by the party establishment. He had the endorsements of former Prime minister, Said Musa and George Cadle Price. Fonseca also had the support of First Deputy Leader, Juan Vildo Marin and former Tourism minister, Godfrey Smith as well as from Secretary General, Henry Usher and Communication Director, Yasser Musa. Fonseca's campaigned for Leadership of the party has, to say the least, taken a life of its own. On 31 March 2008, results were announced and Fonseca was defeated by Briceño receiving 310 votes against 330 for Briceño.[3] In Briceño acceptance speech after getting the results, Briceño acknowledged Fonseca and said “To Francis my brother, my friend, my college I offer my thanks for being a worthy opponent and a true and honourable man”. Following the resignation of Briceño as PUP leader on 7 October 2011, another 2011 People's United Party leadership election and convention was called. The party held it's nominations on 9 October 2011 and this time, both Fonseca and Albert Area Representative, Mark Espat submitted their nominations and ultimately stood as candidates for the party's leadership. However, this time the game was different. Fonseca campaigned well and sighted insecurity in the PUP that he will address if elected leader. After results were announced on 2 November 2011, it was made clear that Fonseca had emerged victorious over Espat. After he got into the leadership realms, Fonseca focused on delivering his promise and preparing the PUP for the 2012 general election. During the 2012 election campaign, he supported on further oil exploration and pledged a moratorium over continued exploration.

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