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The San Pedro Sun

Cultural Day celebrated at various Pre-schools on the Island
hild stimulation month ran throughout the month of March countrywide under the theme “Early Childhood Education: Start Early – Aim High!” As part of the month-long activities, this week the pre-schools on Ambergris Caye took time out to highlight the various cultural groups in Belize. While ABC Pre School and Little Angels celebrated Culture Day on Tuesday, March 27th, San Pedro Pre-school held their the following day. Students dressed in their best cultural costumes depicting the various ethnic groups that make up our country, Belize. Showcasing the typical outfit, traditional food items, important musical instruments, and handmade arts and crafts of the Maya, Mestizo, Creole, Garifuna, Chinese and even North Americans, the children enjoyed various interactive activities. As part of the cultural activity, the students along with teachers prepared posters and colorful displays on the history of the various ethnic groups and their cultural aspects that make them unique.

Medical Students Intern at the Dr. Otto Rodriguez PolyClinic
Six medical students are at the Dr. Otto Rodriguez PolyClinic II for a two week elective program. The students came to the clinic through the Medics Away program. Medics Away Ltd. is an international organization that offers highly rewarding overseas experiences for medical students and professionals through electives and activity breaks in a wide range of destinations. Medics Away Ltd was founded in 2003 with the aim to help qualified 3rd, 4th and 5th-year student doctors with the fulfillment of their medical electives. The six students at the PolyClinic are from two universities in the United Kingdom. Four of students are from the University of Warwick Medical School in Warwick, England, while two students are from the University of Nottingham Medical School in Nottingham, England. According to Dr. Zuniga of the PolyClinic, “These students basically go to other countries, primarily third world countries to have a different feel for the medical system in each of the countries they travel to. Every year we have a couple students that come in. The students that we have now come from a program called Medics Away, but we usually get contacts from the students themselves. Normally we are contacted by the students and we require them to send us letters that state that they are studying medicine in a particular university, a letter from the university and a CV. We send it to our managers who then approve that they can come to the clinic to do their electives.”

Belize Premiere League comes to San Pedro
After almost an entire season of playing home games away from home, the Seadogs are now able to play their remaining three home games here on the island. According to SP Seadogs secretary, Phillip “Billy” Leslie, “Our request for home games has been granted. From the inception of the San Pedro Seadogs, we have been denied the chance to hold home games because of inadequate representation. The person we sent to represent us did not fight San Pedro’s case, because he wasn’t from San Pedro. We have made the required adjustments to the stadium and we are confident that we will win our remaining three games which will place us in contention for the other round.” Football fans across Ambergris Caye are invited to come out this Sunday, April 1st to cheer on the SP Seadogs as they go up against FC Belize at the Ambergris Stadium. The game starts at 2:30PM with a $10 cover charge at the gate.

Caye Caulker Water Quality
Belize Water Services Limited (BWS) has become aware of some esthetic problems with the water on Caye Caulker, with customers reporting a salty taste. In order to rectify the situation as quickly as possible, BWS has dispatched a team to the reverse osmosis plant to perform remedial works including installation of new filter membranes. BWS expects the water quality to be restored by March 30, 2012. At BWS, quality service and customer satisfaction are two key objectives. We apologize for any inconvenience caused to the residents and consumers in Caye Caulker.

Caye Notes: What’s happening in San Pedro this weekend
NACNW Holds BBQ Fund Raiser The North Ambergris Caye Neighborhood Watch (NACNW) will be holding a BBQ fund raiser on Saturday, March 31st, across from the old Beach-N-Kitchen just before the Palapa Bar. SACNW Hosts Beach BBQ and Family Fun Day On Sunday, April 1st the South Ambergris Caye Neighborhood Watch (SACNW) will be hosting a beach BBQ and Family Fun Day. The event will be held on the beach just south of Athens Gate. San Pedro Library Offers Children’s Easter Programs Thanks to the great response, the San Pedro Town Library is able to provide a Children’s Easter Program. The dates are April second, third and fourth for children ages 7 – 10. The time will be from 10am until noon and 2PM to 4PM. Miss Isla Bonita Elementary School 2012 Pageant Saturday March 31st, 6:30pm until 11:00pm at the Angel Nunez High School Auditorium. Cancer Society Hair Aware Fundraiser Saturday, March 31st at Central Park from 9AM.

Ambergris Today

Liquor Licensing Board Takes Strong Stance
The complaints in San Pedro have mostly been about terrible conditions of streets, and dust and poor beaches and dirty areas, but lately they have been about bars. The complaints are about noise pollution in some bars that are not sound proof, late opening hours and lately also the fact that prostitution is rampant and blatant in many bars on the island. One caller to the radio morning show lamented: “I am disgusted that I am taking my children to school in the morning and we bump into these three prostitutes, half naked and drunk making a dirty scene right in front of their bar. My children have to put up with this and I must give explanations to them.” “But this and many other irregularities are going to stop,” said Jennie Staines, Chairperson of the San Pedro Liquor Licensing Board. She explained that the committee, which includes the Mayor, is going to make some dramatic changes to solve these problems that have been plaguing San Pedro for ages.

Child Stimulation Month Comes to an End!
Child Stimulation Month was celebrated under the theme "Early Childhood Education - Start Early - Aim High!" All five pre-schools on the island carried out fun and educative activities through out the month of March. Students enjoyed activities such as story telling, granparents day arts and crafts, cultural day, hug day, sports day and much more. Child Stimulation Month came to an end on Friday, March 30, 2012, as all five pre-schools gathered to part-take in a grand closing parade through the downtown San Pedro. Participating schools were ABC Pre-School, San Pedro Pre-School, Little Angels Pre-School, Brighter Tomorrow Pre-School and Holy Cross Pre-School.

TEEN TALK: The Price of Popularity
What is popularity? Popularity is dated back in the early 1490’s derived from the Latin word ‘popularis’ meaning well liked or common. It is a quality in which a large number of people are fond of you, giving you a high social status. Popularity can be attained by the influence of your actions or simply the style you portray physically. Someone who is constantly admired for performing a good deed may become popular among a certain group of people. Just as easily, someone who is a bully at school or “the class clown” becomes popular among peers who indulge in these actions for their satisfaction. A kind of stereo type is created with popularity. You can be popular among the athletes, the “nerds”, or the party goers. Being popular is a responsibility. It may bring positive and negative advantages. You are respected, appreciated more than others and not to mention easy passes to parties or other fun events. But it also brings hatred from others for no particular reason and even verbal or physical bullying for too much high social status. When one is popular they must understand that they are being watched all the times and they should be careful to be good role models. Being popular, for all the wrong reasons, is dangerous as it moves others to follow in your footsteps.

Isla Bonita Elementary Pageant Contestants Pampered
Miss Isla Bonita Elementary Pageant 2012 Takes Place this Saturday - This year Isla Bonita Elementary School will have four lovely candidates vying for the title of Miss Isla Bonita Elementary. Each has been working hard, together with their classes, to raise money for improvements to the Isla Bonita playground and lunch area. On Friday, March 30, 2012, the four contestants Caroline Sersland, Joyce Martinez, Martha Alica Vasquez, Alejandra Hackson and outgoing Queen Grace Brown were given much pampering courtesy of Escape Spa (Kristi Gonzalez) just before the big event on Saturday, March 31, 2012. They were given manicures, pedicures and facials so that they glow on stage and look their prettiest. Come out and show your support as the candidates and students of Isla Bonita perform. The evening will be filled with dances, modeling, talent presentations, Evening Gown presentation as well as numbers by Barbara’s Dance Company!

Misc Belizean Sources

Easter information for Businesses
Under the laws of Belize as exercised by the Stann Creek Liquor Licensing Board please note that from Midnight on Holy Thursday until Midnight on Good Friday no establishment on the Peninsula may sell any alcoholic beverage. This does not mean that restaurants or grocery stores must close; only that they refrain from serving or selling alcohol. In fact, due to the large number of expected visitors we encourage restaurants to open Good Friday and serve our hungry guests. All employers should also note that the following days require payment of overtime as follows: Good Friday: Double Time Saturday: Time-and-a-half Sunday: Regular work day if part of normally scheduled hours, Time-and-a-half if not part of regular hours Monday: Double Time

CBVA now recruiting volleyball players
The CBVA is looking for volleyball players. They practice on Mondays and Fridays at 5:30pm at Independence Park. Email for more information.

Channel 7

Yolanda Schakron's election petition was denied in the Supreme Court today. On Monday, preliminary arguments were delivered before Chief Justice Kenneth Benjamin. Schakron's attorneys argued that the Returning Officer for Lake Independence, Noreen Fairweather, had overstepped her legal bounds when she she disqualified Schakron based on her dual citizenship. The attorneys for the Mark King and the Attorney General's Ministry contended that this matter had already been decided upon by Justice Legall in the injunction case which was heard on nomination day, February 17. In court today, Chief Justice Benjamin pointed out that Justice Legall's ruling still stands and it has the backing of the Supreme Court. Chief Justice Benjamin said quote, "The decision from Justice Legall is a final one on the matter, and stands in full force." And with that said, the Chief Justice ruled that the application was refused and ordered that the appellants pay $5,000 to the respondents in court costs. Lisa Shoman, attorney for the appellants, spoke to the media outside of court, and, out of defeat, she conjured victory: she said that this decision affirms their position that the Returning Officer was wrong when she disqualified Schakron on nomination day.

And While Mark King dodged that election petition; he still has another one pending in the Supreme Court. It has been filed on behalf of Martin Galvez, Schakron's brother. According to the PUP, they have filed the application for this new petition because at the time of the election, King was under a government contract, which effectively disqualifies him as a candidate. It was to be heard in the courtroom of Chief Justice Kenneth Benjamin this afternoon, but neither King nor Noreen Fairweather, who are named as respondents once again, would allow legal officers to serve them with the legal documents. Both sides were not adequately prepared to go to court and as a result, as a result, the hearing was postponed until Tuesday.

Tonight, 19 year-old Akeem Thurton, the man convicted of the attempted murder of attorney Rodwell Williams in the first trial without jury, is serving the first night of a 15 year sentence handed down by Chief Justice Kenneth Benjamin. In court today, Thurton was given a last chance to speak. He said quote, "My Lord, I don't agree with this. You chanced me." End quote. He finished his address and Chief Justice Benjamin then outlined the method he used to decide on the appropriate sentence. According to Chief Justice Benjamin a social worker did an in-depth assessment of Thurton's background, and there were several mitigating factors pointing to a lighter sentence. Firstly, Thurton had no previous convictions for any kind of offenses before the court.

He was a highly regarded, senior police officer commanding a sensitive post as the head of Eastern Division's Special Branch, but in May of last year, Sargeant Sherwood Wade had a mighty fall from grace when he was criminally charged for possession of counterfeit currency. But, it was all for nothing, because today, Sergeant Wade, got off on the charge of possession of counterfeit currency. The charge was simply withdrawn in the courtroom of the Chief Magistrate. The exact reason for the withdrawal is not known, but highly placed sources told 7News that the prosecutor did not have any evidence at his disposal to successfully prosecute this case. A key point that must be proven in the charge of possession of counterfeit currency that the accused person knew that the money was counterfeit and that he or she then still tried to use that money. The prosecutor did not have evidence to prove that Sergeant Wade had this knowledge when he tried to deposit this money in the Belize Bank.

Tonight, a family of 7 from Hattieville is homeless and after their two storey wooden home burnt down this afternoon. They lost everything - and they told Robin Schaffer that it all started when they were cooking beans on fire hearth - and a piece of firewood fell:.. Robert Usher, fire victim "Piece of the firewood dropped on the floor and no one noticed it and that's how it started. I didn't even know because I was resting. It was when she came then she alerted me and told me that the house was under fire." "When I got up I got a hammer and start to whap the wall where the fire was. The wall came down on me; I didn't know that it was already spreading. I thought that if I whap out the wall then the fire would not spread to other parts of the house." "But I had to run out the way because when that heat jump in my face, it nearly killed me. I had to run out the way. I start to get the children out and some of the things that I could have save."

Tonight 11 year old Katarina Ishim is on her way to a hospital in Tennessee - where she will receive lifesaving surgery. Arrangements were worked out through the Gift of Life programme and a Christian missionary group. She left Belize this morning on a United Airlines flight. As we've reported, the 11 year old from San Pablo in the Stann Creek district has a massive tumor growing on her face. The tumor started growing in 2010 and then it was surgically removed in August of 2011. It started growing back aggressively this year - and has to remove immediately.

Two unlicensed guns along with ammunition were found in a Corozal hotel room leading to the arrest of three men. Just after midnight on TUESDAY, Police stopped three men who were walking down 6th Avenue in Corozal Town. One of the men was Emmanuel WILLOUGHBY, who is wanted in connection with an Aggravated Burglary in Crooked Tree Village. All three men were searched and nothing was found except a hotel room key. So, the 22 year old unemployed Belize City resident was taken with his friends to the hotel room at City Light Guest House. The police conducted a thorough search, even looking in the ceiling, and their labor was rewarded when they uncovered a seriously dangerous prohibited firearm: a .357 magnum revolver loaded with (6) live rounds, and (1) Glock 19 9mm Pistol, with (1) magazine containing (14) live rounds.

Lisel Alamilla is Belize's first Minister of Sustainable Development. The career conservationist was recruited into the second Barrow Administration to try and smooth out sometimes turbulent relations with the conservation community. And the effort to normalize those relations began in earnest today with the first meeting between the Association of Protected Areas Management Organizations, APAMO and Minister Alamilla. It's a follow up to a meeting APAMO held with all political parties before the general election, and for this one, APAMO asked its members to submit a laundry list of issues. Today - after seeing that list - Alamilla said her ministry will take as much as it can on board - but there are limits to what she can do:..

The Forestry Department also participated in today's meeting. Before the election, that department had become the scourge of conservation groups because of its lax position on a largely unregulated rosewood trade. But one of Minister Alamilla's first actions when she got into office was to effect a moratorium. The pleased the conservationists but angered rosewood cutters and traders. Today Chief Forestry Officer Sabido told us that an inventory of all rosewood is underway, including those trees that are still standing in the forest and those that have already been felled. He outlined the plan going forward:.. Wilbur Sabido, Chief Forestry Officer "There will be several teams out in the field in the Toledo District and parts of Stann Creek because it is occurring in the Stann Creek District as well to go in and start doing assessments of the material that is already cut."

The Central American Integration System, SICA will be making its presence more pronounced in Belize. That is after SICA Secretary General visited with Belize's foreign minister, Wilfred Elrington. Elrington explained that he would wish to see SCIA become as well known as CARICOM in Belize:.. Hon. Sedi Elrington "We think it is exceedingly important that the Belizean public know much more about what is going on between Belize and SICA. It's an integration movement similar to what is happening in Caricom." "We are very convinced that we can't have a real integration movement unless the people, the ordinary people in the society are fully aware of what is being done at every step of the way."

A police report has been made against Minister of National Security John Saldivar. According to a caller to a morning show this morning, she made the complaint after she and Saldivar's party got into a testy verbal exchange last night in Cayo. 7news has confirmed that there was a very heated exchange between Saldivar's group and the woman - and, if you can believe it, it all started over an order of garnaches - you heard it right, garnaches! Apparently Saldivar and his group of about 8 were getting some late night garnaches after an evening out. They were waiting for their order to finish - and Saldivar reportedly took one of the garnaches that the vendor was preparing - before she had finished the order. The woman - who had also ordered garnaches - protested loudly that Saldivar had taken one of her garnaches. They got into a back and forth - and Saldivar's crew jumped in verbally attacking the woman.

Tomorrow night, the Bliss Institute for Performing Arts will feature an internationally renowned Israeli piano duo. The Silver-Garburg piano duo have performed all over the world and Belize is the 65th country that they will be playing in. Their concert is free, but our intern Robin Schaffer discovered that isn't what makes this show a must-see. She caught up with them shortly after they landed and found out what will make tomorrow's performance expressive, elegant and romantic. Gil Garburg, Silver - Garburg Piano Duo "We just landed about 2 hours ago. It's beautiful and very relaxing here. The way from the airport we saw the Belize River. We will see how it goes, we are still only a few hours here." Sivan Silver, Silver - Garburg Piano Duo "Music is music, it's not really important for how many people it is played and it is an important venue - for us every concert is important. In every concert we experience the music and also the listeners are part of this experience."

Channel 5

Schakron election petition request denied
The March seventh election may be behind us, but the battle is not over in a number of constituencies. The People’s United Party is filing applications for election petitions in at least four areas. This morning a decision was handed down in the case of Yolanda Schakron, the first petition that was filed. The drama ...

But Brother Galvez serves Mark King for Lake I
It wasn’t to be the last appearance of Shoman in court today. On behalf of the Martin Galvez, Shoman filed for leave to apply for an election petition regarding Mark King whom they allege did not disclose a contract for security services with the government of Belize as the law mandates. Shoman contends that the ...

Felled rosewood prior to moratorium will be sold
In Thursday’s newscast we reported that Minister of Forestry Lisel Alamilla met with dealers and loggers in Boom Creek and Santa Teresa to discuss a way forward in the wake of a recent moratorium on rosewood extraction. Since the suspension on March sixteenth stakeholders have been up in arms over losses they have had to ...

Minister says loggers were informed about the moratorium
In response to the argument that loggers were taken by surprise, Alamilla said that had they been informed of a moratorium prior to its implementation, there would have been unchecked extraction of the precious wood across Toledo.   Isani Cayetano “Looking at the moratorium, it doesn’t have a deadline per se. Can you tell us ...

Girl with tumor flown out of country for lifesaving surgery
Catarina Ishim, the young girl from San Pablo, Toledo is on her way to Tennessee tonight. She arrives there shortly after ten o’clock on a journey that will hopefully change her life. Catarina is diagnosed with Leimyosarcoma, which is a rare and malignant type of tumor that develops from smooth muscle tissue. She has been ...

15 years for man who shot Rodwell Williams
He was convicted on March fifteenth of the attempted murder of Attorney Rodwell Williams and today Akeem Thurton was back in the Supreme Court to learn his fate. Thurton was facing as many as twenty-five years to life in prison, but after reviewing a social report on his character, Chief Justice Kenneth Benjamin handed down ...

Case of cop with counterfeit notes folds in court
The case against Sergeant Sherwin Wade fell apart in court today. Back in May, 2011 Wade was busted at the Belize Bank where he was found with sixteen hundred dollar bills in US currency. He was charged with the Possession of Counterfeit Notes, pleaded not guilty, was granted bail and then placed on interdiction. Today, ...

Fire in Hattieville; Family loses everything
Tonight a Hattieville family of seven is left homeless after fire gutted their home this afternoon. Head of the household, Robert Usher lost his home and business, neither of which was insured. While the family lost everything, they were able to get the children out, including a seven year old and a twenty-four year old ...

Man shot by cop gives his version of shooting incident
The Caye Caulker man, who was shot by police following a raid early Thursday morning, is speaking out. Three small parcels of marijuana were found inside the house, occupied at the time by three persons including, twenty-five year old Tyson Williams; whose name was reported by police as Tyson Rodriguez. The police also reported that ...

Soldiers accused of cheating on assignment
A Belize Defence Force Lieutenant who was discharged from his duties last month is fighting his termination. Leslie Roberts says his troubles date back to January 2010 when he and another Lieutenant took a Junior Command and Staff course in Jamaica. Both soldiers were accused of cheating on an assignment and while the allegations were ...

Soldier wants justice
Passing the exams should have meant an automatic promotion for Roberts from as far back as December 2009. But after inquiring about why his documents were not submitted, he still wasn’t promoted; instead he was discharged from his duties a second time. Roberts says he still hasn’t received his official walking papers but he has ...

Secretary General of SICA in Belize on working visit
Secretary General Juan Daniel Aleman Gurdian of the Central American Integration System (SICA) ended a brief working visit to Belize this afternoon during which he met with Foreign Affairs Minister Wilfred Elrington. Their discussion included a range of issues and regional initiatives such as the establishment of a SICA office here in Belize. Following the ...

Establishing a SICA Office in Belize
According to Aleman and Elrington, establishing a regional SICA office in Belize will make certain that the political and security issues facing the nation will be addressed in a timely manner.   Wilfred ‘Sedi’ Elrington, Minister of Foreign Affairs “It’s an initiative to set up two sub regional offices here in Belize to strengthen the ...

Music of Christopher Martin and Black Chiney
It’s the pre-Easter weekend and to get you in the mood for dancehall and reggae, two renowned artists will be rocking the north. Devon Lambey of Red carpet Entertainment says that you definitely have to head up North where Christopher Martin and Black Chiney will be making appearances in Orange-Walk and a concert in Corozal. ...

Mista Cleave new Music Video
Last year the tornado craze swept the country, but will it be an earthquake next? Well, Belizean-American Artist, Mista Cleave, says he is dropping his brand new video, earthquake. Mista Cleave, who arrived in Belize from L.A. on Thursday evening, says he will be all over the country promoting his music.   Mista Cleave, Artist ...

Chief Villanueva takes Band Fest to Corozal
The biggest national showdown of marching bands takes place this weekend in Corozal. It’s the annual Band Fest that is organized by RSV Limited. According to Band Fest Committee Member, Julia Carillo, the event was a dream of Governor General Sir Colville Young and the station C.E.O., Rene Villanueva Senior took up the task after ...


Pope Benedict criticises US trade embargo on Cuba
Pope Benedict XVI has criticised the 50-year-old US trade embargo imposed on Cuba, as he ends a visit to the island. The Pope called for greater rights in Cuba, saying he wanted a society in which no-one was denied basic freedoms. This aim was not helped by economic measures wh...

27-year-old Keron Rosa has been detained pending a charge of drug trafficking. Police reports are that a police officer attached to the Intermediate Southern Formation was travelling on a James Bus from Dangriga to Belmopan when a man with a cooler entered the bus and took a seat. ...

Three men have been hit with firearm charges. Police in Corozal say they were on mobile patrol on Wednesday morning when they saw three men walking on Sixth Avenue. One of the men, 22-year-old Emmanuel Willoughby of a Belize City address is wanted in connection with an aggr...

There was cause for celebration this morning at the Holy Angels Roman Catholic School in Pomona Village. The opening and dedication of the new classroom building is a shining example of what community cooperation can accomplish. Through the efforts of benefactor William Bow...

The Rotary Club of Punta Gorda yesterday recognized winners of Rotary’s Poetry contest in Punta Gorda. Presentations of award prizes to recognize top students of the Poetry contest highlighting Social Issues were made to winners by Punta Gorda Rotary President Olive Woodye. The t...

Yolanda Schakron, the woman who replaced Cordel Hyde for the PUP in the Lake Independence area, has lost her chance to present a Petition before the Supreme Court. In his ruling before midday today, Chief Justice, Kenneth Benjamin, denied Schakron permission to bring forth her Pe...


Yolanda Shakron’s election petition denied
This morning Yolanda Schakron and her supporters gathered at the Supreme Court to hear whether Chief Justice Kennet...

Court summons served to Lake I's representative Mark King
Late last night court bailiffs visited the homes of Mark King in Belize City and Noreen Fairweather in Belmopan. Th...

Katarina Ishim receives funding to remove malignant facial tumour
Viewers will recall the sad ordeal of 11 year old Katarina Ishim who has a rapidly growing tumor on her face. Today...

International artists gear up for grand concert tomorrow
YC Belize is here! The high energy, interdenominational annual youth conference is scheduled for tomorrow March 30t...

Efforts to serve Returning Officer Noreen Fairweather unsuccessful
Noreen Fairweather, who was the Elections Returning Officer, should have been served a summons to appear in Court r...

New interactive learning program launched
Tiffany Simpson launches her new interactive learning program. Learning has become even more interactive and fun – ...

Man caught trafficking drugs on James bus
A police officer attached to the Intermediate Southern Formation makes an in transit arrest. The officer reported t...

Cyclist knocked on the Western Highway
A road traffic accident took place last night between miles 43 and 44 on the western highway. Driver of a black car...

Three slapped with multiple charges after bust
An unlicensed firearms and ammunitions arrest was made in Corozal. On March 28 at 12:30am, Police on mobile patrol ...

Korean tour guide robbed
Ms. Kim Mi Young is a Korean Tour Guide who resides at Sea Side Guest House in Belize City. She reported to police ...

The Guardian

Hurricanes Junior girls win game in junior competition
The Belize City Junior Girls’ competition continued on Saturday March 24, 2012, with two more games on the schedule. In game one, Blazers Juniors handed the defending champions Avengers its first defeat of the 2012 competition by the score of 10-8. The winning pitcher was Ashley Lucas and the losing pitcher was Kayle McFadzean. In game two, it was the Junior Hurricanes turn to drop their distress on the Avengers when it handed them its second defeat of the competition by the score of 23-16. The winning pitcher was Rebecca Nicholson and the losing pitcher was Kayle McFadzean. The competition will continue on Saturday March 31, 2012, with two more games. At 2:00 pm, in game one, Blazers Junior Girls will go up against Hurricanes Juniors and in game two, Blazers Junior Girls will see action against Avengers in this now weekly double header.

University of Belize hosts 6th Natural Resources Management Symposium
Scientists from the University of Belize (UB) and Belize as well as natural resources managers and students of the university along with regional and international counterparts converged on March 22 and 23, at the University of Belize Central Campus, Belmopan to chart the way for the sustainable management of natural resources in Belize. The two-day symposium was held under the theme: “Conservation through Cooperation: Practical Approaches for the Management of Natural Resources in Belize.” It was designed to bring together researchers, managers, students, government agencies, and NGOs engaged in natural resource management in Belize, to share their findings and evaluate the status of resource management in the country. Keynote speaker, UB’s scientist, Dr. Elma Kay of the Environmental Research Institute (ERI) led off with a presentation on ‘Partnerships for Conservation and Sound Natural Resources Management in Belize: The ERI Experience.’ ERI, the premier environmental research institute in Belize, provides sound science and creates a culture of evidence-based decision-making in areas relevant to Belize’s sustainable development.

Mirage Lady Rebels capture Belize City Senior Female Softball Marathon
The 78th Belize City senior female softball campaign opened on Sunday March 25, 2012, at Rogers Stadium, the home of softball, with the traditional one-day showcase marathon competition. The competition was officially declared opened by Mrs. Gretel Lashley, Honorary Life Member of the Belize Softball Federation, former second baseman for the National Women’s Team in the mid 60’s and early 70’, former batting champion and stolen bases champion. Lashley, in her remarks, challenged the players and coaches to develop their skill levels and to excel at the game of softball. The Marathon Competition featured all four teams that will participate in this year’s competition. In the final game, it was the Mirage Lady Rebels team that defeated Telemedia by the score of 10-6 to capture this year’s marathon competition. Mirage Lady Rebels pounded the pitching of Telemedia’s starter and loser Mary Flowers for 10 runs on 7 hits including a run producing doubles by pitcher, Lanisha Jones and centre fielder, Marsha Cassasola. Meanwhile, Telemeida scored 4 runs on 5 hits. The winning pitcher was Lanisha Jones and the losing pitcher was Mary Flowers, who had relief help from Elaine Humes.

Police United and FC Belize maintain Leads in Premier League
The Premier League of Belize Football Competition continued over the last weekend with six games across the country. On Saturday, March 24, at the Norman Broaster Stadium in San Ignacio Town, the visiting San Pedro Seadogs defeated World FC by the score of 3-2. The goal scorers for the San Pedro Seadogs were Kent Gabourel in the 39th minutes of play and Francisco Mejia in the 45th and 70th minute of play. Meanwhile, the goal scorers for World FC were Carlos Vasquez in the 35th minute of play and Richard Carrillo in the 68th minute of play. At the Isidorio Beaton Stadium in Belmopan, the Belmopan Bandits and San Ignacio United FC played to a 1-1 draw. The goal for the Belmopan Bandits was scored by Jacinto Bermudez in the 40th minute of play, while the goal for San Ignacio United FC was scored by Amin August in the 41st minute of play. Meanwhile, at the MCC Grounds here in Belize City, Police United continued on its winning streak when it edged the visiting Paradise/Freedom Fighters by the score of 2-1.


Brazen thieves stole boat and sleeping watchman!
The watchman was sleeping on board a 32-foot Twin Vee Weekender fiberglass boat with two attached black Suzuki 250 HP outboard engines when thieves stole it and towed it out into the open seas. When the boat was being taken away through the canal waterway behind the property of the owner, the watchman was awakened by the movement and he jumped off the boat; the thieves continued towing away the boat and escaped with the prize

Stepfather’s beating broke 2-year-old’s leg
He was found guilty of grievous harm... “…the child is at a high risk of present death if returned to the same environment”... Carldeen Lawrence, 20, was today found guilty of grievous harm against one of his two stepdaughters. The incident, which occurred in June of last year, was addressed by the courts when the verdict was read and a fine was imposed.

Guat prez, Perez Molina, raises eyebrows with daring drug decriminalization proposal
Belize says discussion cannot advance without the US, the major consumer.... “Let it pass through.... We are getting fed up with what is happening, of the way the consuming nations are not helping us properly,” Belize ambassador to Guatemala recounts from statement by Guat president... Guatemala’s recently installed president, Otto Perez Molina, who was elected on a platform to tackle the issue of the nation’s security, made a radical proposal this past weekend at a Central American Drug Summit, to decriminalize the consumption of drugs now deemed illicit, and also to decriminalize and regulate the transshipment of such drugs.

Tyson ran; the cop shot!
Caye Caulker resident shot by police during drug search... Tyson Rodriguez, 25, a resident of Dangriga, is presently recovering from gunshot wounds to his abdomen at the Karl Heusner Memorial Hospital after he was shot by police in Caye Caulker.

CitCo pay-mistress terminated
Swindled $69,000 from City Hall coffers in two years... CitCo and Central Government audits failed to discover the scam... Effective tomorrow, Friday, March 30, the end of the financial year, pay-mistress for the Belize City Council, Shirlene Sabal, accused of fleecing her employers of $69,586 in 2010 and 2011, will be terminated.

Gunmen invade UB ITVET compound posing as students
3 students robbed at gunpoint of laptop computers, cell phones and jewelry... One day after the finance officer of the YWCA on St. Thomas Street in Belize City was robbed at gunpoint by a lone gunman who got away with around $3,000 in cash and checks, three students of the University of Belize engineering department were also robbed at gunpoint around 1:30 p.m. on Tuesday, March 27, while they were in class in the UB building on the ITVET compound on Freetown Road.

Petitions, petitions, petitions …
UDP strikes at Francis Fonseca – PUP goes after Mark King and Herman Longsworth... UDP’s Chang alleges Fonseca won Freetown by bribery – seeks court’s permission to file election petition; PUP says Longsworth and King have undisclosed contracts with GOB. “By virtue of Section 46(c) of the Representation of the People Act, the election of a person as member of the House of Representatives shall be declared void where bribery was committed...” 58(1)(h) says”...a person who is a manager of a company which is a party to any contract with the government for or on account of the public service and has not within one month before the day of election, declared publicly and in a newspaper circulating in the electoral division for which he is a candidate, a notice setting out the nature of the contract and his interest or the interest of the company therein” is disqualified.

FFB “bruk,” but not broken
FFB Executive promises “new day” for Belizean football... On March 15, 2012, the 14-year reign of President of the Football Federation of Belize (FFB), Dr. Bertie Chimilio, was democratically ended by free and fair elections carried out at the Federation’s headquarters in Belmopan.

2012 Cross Country dreams
The countdown is on to the 84th Annual Holy Saturday Cross Country Cycling Classic but, like when we would say, “di Crismos money no come yet, but i wahn come,” there is a doubtful feeling of hope mixed with creeping despair gnawing at the insides of Belizeans, especially cycling fans, as we look toward the approaching day and ponder the possibilities. It is natural; the last time a Belizean won the Cross Country was in 2006 when Shane Vasquez proudly wore the precious garland.

Big Wire’s farewell ride in Cross Country
It symbolizes the end of an era, and certainly conjures up nostalgic memories of past glory days, as today the most legendary name among active cyclists, Michael “Big Wire” Lewis announced that this will be his last Cross Country ride in 2012. Apologies, corrections to “Oscar’s Year,” our Wednesday issue story on Junior Cross Country 2012 In our lead cycling story in our last issue – “Oscar’s year, Oscar Qurious, Jr. completes sweep with 2012 Junior Cross Country garland” – there were some unfortunate errors in the names we gave for a few of the other top finishing positions.

EU signs 3 agreements with Caribbean for US$110 million
Special assistance earmarked for Belize – details to be discussed during April mission... Chief Executive Officer in the Belize Ministry of Economic Development, Yvonne Hyde, the focal point for European Union matters inside the Government of Belize, informed our newspaper today that a mission of the Caribbean Forum of African Caribbean and Pacific States (CARIFORUM) is due to come to Belize in April, at which time the specifics of the assistance for Belize, under an EU-financed agreement, should be discussed.

EDITORIAL: Belize City and the PUP
In a couple post-general election editorials, we have commented analytically on the fact that the People’s United Party (PUP) defeated the United Democratic Party (UDP) by some 3,000 votes in the so-called Out-Districts of Belize. We have not examined the reasons why the UDP smashed the PUP by more than 5,000 votes in Belize City. This is what we propose to do now

From The Publisher
“In 1789 the French West Indian colony of San Domingo supplied two-thirds of the overseas trade of France and was the greatest individual market for the European slave trade. It was an integral part of the economic life of the age, the greatest colony in the world, the pride of France, and the envy of every other imperialist nation. The whole structure rested on the labor of half-a-million slaves.

Thomas Charlesworth rails about city traffic
Dear Editor, Kindly allow me a space to vent my frustration about some of the things that a driver must endure here in Belize. First, let me start with all these “dollar taxis” and taxis in general. There are too many dollar vans on Mahogany Street, and let’s not forget the buses. The Licensing And Transport Board’s guide to public service tests states at number 23: “The driver of a public service vehicle may pick up passengers at any place.” Now understanding that, all taxi drivers take that literally to mean that they can block traffic, stop at the corner or any place that they are hailed, and the same goes for the buses. Then there are the pedestrians who for some reason or the other think that they have the right of way at all times. Imagine this, there is a sign clearly marked on the Northern Highway and by Atlantic Bank. It says, “Prohibited Crossing 7 to 9,” but each and every day there are people who ignore that sign.


March Winds
We have definitely been experiencing strong March Winds this year, as a result divers were grounded a few times from going out. Thankfully wind has settled down a bit. The picture below was taken to show you just how windy it was at our house. We woke up one morning to discover that one of our pool loungers had been blown around big time. The one on it’s side was that way to dry out it is the one that was upside down that and a few feet away from where it originally was that surprised us. I also had a report from Eileen at DandE’s that pollen was very high for mid March in North Ambergris Caye.

Belizean Gacho
Gacho is a very simple meal to make that truly satisfies. Beans and cheese are very nutritious and flour tortilla is very filling.This is one of the meals I make often when the cupboard is bare.

International Sources

VIDEO: Quest for the Lost Maya Promo
The PBS documentary "Quest for the Lost Maya," featuring Dr. George Bey and Millsaps students, will air nationally on March 28 at 9 p.m. Central/10 p.m. Eastern Standard Time (check your local listings). Produced by National Geographic, the documentary was filmed in the summer of 2011 at Millsaps' Kaxil Kiuic Biocultural Reserve in Yucatán, Mexico. National Geographic became interested in work at the reserve after an article in USA Today in August 2010 reported on Bey's research about why the ancient Maya suddenly left their homes in Kiuic.

Very Early Thoughts On The 2012 Hurricane Season
I wanted to post some very early preliminary thoughts I have regarding the 2012 Hurricane Season, which starts, unbelievably, in a little more than two months. First off, as far as I can determine, we are out of the La Nina phase of the ENSO and are in neutral conditions. I think for the upcoming 2012 Hurricane Season, we will be on the warm side of neutral and transitioning into a weak El Nino as we get into September, October and November. Additionally, the eastern Atlantic is colder in terms of ocean water temperatures as compared to recent years. This, I think, means that long tracked storms will be very far and few between and our development will be in-close, mainly west of 55 and 60 West Longitude. Looking at the weather pattern from this winter and into the spring, there are quite a few years that pop out at me for analog years. They are:

5 appealing trends in retirement lifestyles
Belize: Cheap — and they speak English Despite its Central American setting, Belize uses English as its national language, so visitors and retirees don't have to worry about understanding the lingo. The country is also popular with Americans because it’s possible to live here comfortably for less than $25,000 a year. A complete meal in a mid-price restaurant, for instance, will cost under $40 for two — and if you like fresh seafood, this is your culinary paradise. Belize also has big appeal as a retirement destination for active couples who love snorkeling, scuba diving and jungle trekking.

Edited by Marty (11/17/12 10:45 AM)