The House of Representatives is equivalent to the British House of Commons. The Senate is the counterpart of the House of Lords. It was one of the new features of the 1963 Constitution which was retained in the 1981 Constitution.
The Senate comprises twelve members and one President. The President presides over the meetings of the Senate and is elected from among the membership or nominated from outside the Senate. Each member is appointed by the governor General with the advice of different persons and/or organization as follows:
- Six members with the advice of the Prime Minister.
- Three members with the advice of the Leader of the Opposition.
- One member with the advice of the Belize Council of Churches and Evangelical Association of Churches.
- One member with the advice of the Belize Chamber of Commerce and Industry and the Belize Business Bureau.
- One member with the adcice of the National Trade Union Congress and the Civil Society Steering Comittee.
Besides debating and confirming Bills passed by the House of Representatives, the Senate has other functions including:
- Authorising the ratification of any treaty by the Government of Belize, including any treaty for the final settlement of the territorial dispute between Belize and the Republic of Guatemala.
- Approving the establishement in Belize of any new military base of operations for any foreign military forces after the 15th day of January, 2002.
- Approving the appointment of an Ambassador, a High Commissioner, the Chief Justice, a Justice of the Supreme Court, a Justice of the Court of Appeal, the Contractor General and the Ombudsman.
Members of the Senate
- Hon. Marco Pech – President
- Ms. Juliet Thimbriel – Vice President
- Mr. Gerardo Marconi Sosa – United Democratic Party (UDP)
- Hon. Joy Grant – Government Senator and Minister of Energy, Science and Technology and Public Utilities
- Mr. Godwin Hulse – Leader of Government Business and Minister of Labour, Local Government, Rural Development and National Emergency Management
- Mr. Markhelm Jude Lizarraga – United Democratic Party (UDP)
- Ms. Collet Emmanuel Montejo – People’s United Party (PUP)
- Ms. Lisa Shoman – People’s United Party (PUP)
- Mr. Karen Marie Bodden – People’s United Party (PUP)
- Hon. Charles Gibson – Government Senator and Minister of Public Service and Elections and Boundaries
- Hon. Lisel Alamilla – Government Senator and Minister of Forestry, Fisheries and Sustainable Development
- Reverend Father Noel Leslie – Belize Council of Churches and Evangelical Association of Churches
- Mr. Ray Lincoln Davis – National Trade Union Congress and the Civil Society Steering Committee