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#445336 - 08/28/12 01:48 PM Today's Belize News: August 28, 2012
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Last night's TV news on Channel 7 and Channel 5
Also with the most recent Open Your Eyes, and the Dickie Bradley Specials

The San Pedro Sun

Rowan walks across San Pedro, raises nearly $7,000
Close to 150 islanders joined inspirational 14-year-old Rowan Garel in his walk across San Pedro on Saturday August 25th. The event was the second of two planned walks in an effort to raise monies for the Belize Council for the Visually Impaired (BCVI). The five-mile walk took off shortly after 9AM from the southern end of San Pedro Town near Pelican Reef Resort and ended at the Boca Del Rio Park with all day beach party. “I am very glad that I did the walk. [It was done] as a fundraiser for BCVI. I did the walk across Belize but unfortunately we were not able to meet our goal of raising $90,000 to $100,000,” explained Rowan. At the Walk Across Belize, Rowan was able to raise some $73,000 and had hoped that with the walk across San Pedro, it could have bridged the gap. According to BCVI Communications Officer Carla Ayres Musa, they were able to raise $6,895 in cash but are still waiting to collect a few more pledges. So far Rowan has collected a total of $80,641. Musa told The San Pedro Sun that they hope to reach their goal before the end of the year and remain confident that within the next few months they will host more fundraisers which will be able to reach their targeted $100,000.

Ambergris Today

San Pedro Joins Consultation on National Cultural Policy
Local Craftsmen and interested community members were invited by the San Pedro House of Culture at the Sunbreeze Hotel Conference Room on Wednesday, August 22, 2012, for the National Cultural Policy Consultation held by National Institute of Culture and History (NICH) in San Pedro Town. The consultation was carried out to identify the linkages between culture and development in order to discuss a national plan which will reflect the desire of Belizeans for the development of culture and the arts in the country. The consultation took off with an empowering speech by Honorable Manuel Heredia, Minister of Tourism and Culture, in which he pointed out his ministry’s vision of promoting, protecting, preserving and befitting our culture and art on the island. He stated that he will address a meeting with the education department and schools to ensure that the history, culture and art of Belize is being taught to all students in order to keep the culture alive, respected and appreciated for many years to come.

BTIA Executes Huge and Successful Marketing Summit Belize
Even with tourism being one of its main industries; Belize is still relatively unknown internationally, with people still asking the question “Where is Belize?” But the Belize Tourism Industry Association (BTIA) feels that the country has more potential of exploding in the global market. With this in mind, it hosted the 2012 Marketing Summit on Thursday, August 23, 2012, at the Princess Hotel and Casino. The one day event drew over 200 sales, marketing and public relations personnel, managers, bankers, tour operators, artisans, media, students and individuals, all eager and ready to learn about marketing and public relations from internationally renowned trainer/speaker, Mr. David Meerman Scott.

San Pedro's Biggest Festival Back Then
In the book, The Little World of Danny Vasquez, narrated by a Sanpedrano, Danny recollects on the Grand Fiesta in San Pedro. June 29 is the Feast Day of St. Peter and it has been the occasion of the biggest island fiesta ever since the Yucatecan refugees settled in San Pedro in 1848. The preparations for the fiesta took a week, the celebration itself lasted a week, and a third week was required to clean up the village. “In those days we had little money but had the luxury of time. We could spend three weeks on the fiesta and be happy. Today everybody has money but no time,” says Danny as he takes us back to 1916 to a San Pedro of two short streets, 400 people, no electricity, no radios, no motor boats. The fiesta was organized by a committee of four Batabs, two chics and representatives of the three rich families. In the Maya system a Batab was a powerful man like a mayor of a village. In this fiesta they were to collect donations and fees and keep order at the dances. Chic is a Mayan word for comedian. The committee also chose El Amo de Hacienda (owner of the farm) who had to be a rich man because he had to offer gifts during the fiesta. The committee also decided which young ladies would be invited to be the featured dancers during the fiesta.

Second Generation Of Queens In San Pedro
The grand celebration of queens goes back to 1954 when Leni Aguilar Alamilla was first crowned. Even since San Pedro has selected its beauties leading up to last years Yalarelis Hernandez. What an honor and great feeling of pride it is to be Miss San Pedro. But what a greater honor and pride it is to be a part of first generation and second generation of queens. This was the case of Lily Paz Nuñez who was crowned in 1979 and her daughter Liliana Nuñez crowned 27 years later in 2006. No matter what decorations there are on stage, and how many people are present at the event, the feelings are the same. Indeed a few things were different. Elaborate costumes and bathing suits were not used by the first generation queens. Long live the Miss San Pedro pageant! Making a guest appearance on stage that year was Miss Alma Staines who contested in the Miss Belize National Pageant in Belize City, another great honor for San Pedro.

Rowan Garel’s Walk Across San Pedro, Angel Perlita Joins his Cause
Rowan's inspirational journey continued this past weekend in San Pedro, Ambergris Caye, Belize, as he held a ‘Walk across San Pedro’ seeking to reach his goal of raising $100,000 for the Belize Council of the Visually Impaired. The event took place early Saturday morning, August 25, 2012, from Pelican Reef Villas to the Boca del Rio Park north of San Pedro Town. Angel Perlita Zapata Joins Rowan Garel’s Walk Across San Pedro, Ambergris Caye, Belize Dorian’s Angel, Perlita Zapata, was one of the many island residents who showed support to Rowan Garel and trekked the 2.5 mile walk with him from south to north along the main road of Ambergris Caye. She shared a special moment with Rowan as she took his hand to guide him along part of the way.

Misc Belizean Sources

Belize National Top Song Winners
Congratulations to the 3 winners in the Top Song Competition! Carnival winner, Sharon Martinez, Patriotic winner, Nello Player, and Junior winner, Tara G. See them on youtube: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=sp2iYm1_djQ

VIDEO: 2012 Belize National Song Competition
The Belize National Song Competiton is one of the events that kick off the September Celebrations in Belize and this year, 2012, Belize is Celebrating is 31st Anniversary of Independence from Britain. The Musicians and Artists write their own songs and compete in patriotic and carnival categories Despite the change of venue this year, the people came out in droves to support their favorite musicians and artists. This video is only a sampling of the music that the winning artists performed. This is not a professional video with color and sound editing. Its a video to share what's happening in Belize for those who call it HOME!

Stork Club's 80's Night with DJ Caesar
DJ Caesar played some 80's, and some 70's, and 90's, at the Stork Club's 80's night. There was a good turnout, and some dancing was done. The SIRH will be bringing back 80's nights more often.

Save Lucky Boy Campaign
The indiegogo campaign to raise money and awareness for Lucky Boy, the rescued jaguar that is currently doing fine at the Belize Zoo, raised over $11,000. A big thanks to Steven Servantez for getting it going, and making headlines all over the hemisphere. You can still get your Save Lucky Boy shirts: http://www.cafepress.com/saveluckyboy "The campaign is over. Although we didn’t make our goal, the impact this money will make on Lucky Boy and the Zoo will be immense! Thank you to all who supported this campaign the last 30 days by donating, posting, sharing and commenting! My PayPal account will still accept donations! The account is: isuvet89@jvlnet.com If you donate (please), drop me a note at: dogdoc89@gmail.com and let me know! I will forward funds to the Zoo."

Destination Belize 2012 Magazine Online
The Destination Belize Magazine is online in high quality. It's the BTIA's official visitor magazine for Belize. There are cultural articles and interviews throughout the book. Cayo has its own chapter, and it starts on page 103. It admits from the beginning that we are the eco-tourism capital of Belize. http://www.destinationbelize.com/issue_2012/

BTIA's First Marketing Summit a Huge Success
The Belize Tourism Industry Association had its first marketing and tourism summit, and it was a huge success. David Meerman Scott, a marketing and social media expert, was the main speaker at the event, and he challenged the huge audience to think outside of the box. It was such a success, that they are already talking about having another. "The BTIA Marketing summit surpassed all expectations; it allowed participants the opportunity to sharpen their marketing and public relations skills in real time. The session has generated loads of interest from those not only within the tourism industry but a wider range of sectors including schools, NGO’s, banks and other retail companies; we are content and optimistic that those who attended the summit will be placing the knowledge they gathered at this event into practice and reaping the fruits of these in the months to come."

Belize Mega Bingo Results For (25 August 2012)
Straight Line 100.00 Each (13 Balls) 52 ­16 ­47 ­73 ­50 ­24 ­75 ­46 ­63 ­72 ­42 ­44 ­9­ Y 125.00 Each (16 Balls) 52 ­16 ­47 ­73 ­50 ­24 ­75 ­46 ­63 ­72 ­42 ­44 ­9 ­69 ­56 ­33­ Inside World 1000.00 Each (21 Balls) 52 ­16 ­47 ­73 ­50 ­24 ­75 ­46 ­63 ­72 ­42 ­44 ­9 ­69 ­56 ­33 ­39 ­55 ­11 ­65 ­19­ Letter X 750.00 Each (25 Balls) 52 ­16 ­47 ­73 ­50 ­24 ­75 ­46 ­63 ­72 ­42 ­44 ­9 ­69 ­56 ­33 ­39 ­55 ­11 ­65 ­19 ­59 ­68 ­4 ­17­

Channel 7

Another Lake I Murder
Another man was killed in the Lake Independence area this weekend. We say "another" because since April - there has been sharp spike in crime in that area: resulting in at least six murders and about twice that number in shootings. This weekend it continued with both a murder and a shooting - the victims were 20 and under. We start with the murder of 20 year old Miraldo Alvarez - a Belama resident who was hanging out across the river from his home with a friend from Lake I when he was shot. It happened at around 9:45 on Friday night near the Administration Building. Monica Bodden found out more today:.. Diana Enriquez - Mother- In-Law "Friday night after 10 "Brado" was already in his bed. He and his friend "Jafet" was in his room, they were playing games and watching TV. They decided to go buy fry chicken; I was lying down in this chair here. When he and "Jafet" pass by going I told him not to go. He says that he is going to buy a fry chicken and I told him not to go because every night shootings happen back here. I told him that those boys are dodging anybody that they see they will shoot." "He says that he will come back right now and he went. No sooner than he went you heard the shots. He didnt even reach the chicken place."

A Number Of City Shootings
Boulevard. 19 year old Raheem Nicholas was shot to the left shoulder by a light skinned male on a bicycle. There was another shooting on Sunday night where 24 year old Edmund Gentle was shot to the hand. GENTLE was riding on Vernon Street with a friend when a gunman came out from Lakeview Street and called his name. When gentle responded, the man fired a number of shots at him, but luckily, he was only shot to the finger.

Police Shot Alleged Thief Who Ran
And in the weekend's other shooting, it was the police pulling the trigger. On Saturday morning, Police responded to the report of a theft in progress on Marin Parade - where a man was allegedly stealing some fence pipes. Police responded and say that the alleged thief, 42 year old Ernest Vasquez started to run. The Police press officer gave us the official version of what happened next. Inspector Fitzroy Yearwood - Police Press Officer "Initial investigations revealed that police were on patrol and responded to a theft in progress on Marine Parade and upon arrival they saw Vasquez attempting to steal aluminum pipes off a chain link fence on Marine Parade. Upon seeing the police, he tried to escape where the pursue him and he was shot in the leg." Vasquez is at the hospital pending charges.

Western Gas Says It Is Up to Standard
On Thursday when a fire started at the western Gas Depot at mile four and a half on the Western Highway - we all expected a catastrophe. With forty thousand gallons of LPG exposed to naked flames - you'd be right to expect that - but it didn't happen. And, as we told you in Friday's news - a safety feature built into the storage tanks averted what seemed to be a certain disaster. It's called a pressure release valve which released overheated LPG into the air every 20 seconds - so that it did not stay in the tank where it could have possibly cause an explosion there. A release today from Western Gas notes also that an internal valve under the bulk storage tank shutoff the LPG flow as another safety measure. The release says the fire was caused by quote, "an overheated electrical contactor in the transfer pump room" end quote, which ignited fumes from the butane when it was being transferred. That was also the finding of the Fire Department. The Western Gas release congratulates the Fire Service and says that the company is compliant with all industry safety requirements and standards.

Teenager's Death In PG Being Investigated
Police in Punta Gorda are investigating the sudden death of a teenager that happened on Sunday morning. 18 year old security guard Descartes Santiago Bol was found dead near San Marcos Village on the Southern Highway. No one knows for sure how he died - but the Police press officer says there are some telling signs of violence. He explained:.. Inspector Fitzroy Yearwood - Police Press Officer "We have a sudden death in Punta Gorda that we are investigating. The victim in this is Descartes Santiago Bol Jr., 18 year old security guard of the VOA Road Punta Gorda Town. He was seen laying on the pavement with abrasions to the face and chest area." "Initial investigations have revealed that Santiago was seen socializing in Big Falls Village at a bar around 10:30am, 26th August and he had a exchange of words with people also socializing in that bar. He left about 2:30 am and he went to borrow a bicycle at one of his family members in that village and he rode off towards the Dump area. Someone was passing by when they saw the body on the ground and they notified the police. The body was transported to the Punta Gorda Town hospital where he was pronounce dead on arrival. Now awaits a post mortem and we are investigating the circumstances surrounding his death - from the mere fact that he had abrasions to his face and chest."

City Resurfaces Sandlighters' Promenade/Paints Houses
The Sandlighters' Promenade near the Princess looks like one of the few public spaces in Belize City where planners got it right - an expansive, colourful walking area, along the coast. But, while it looks good from far, the Promenade is in bad shape when you see it up close. It's been there for 16 years and the constant exposure to salt water has corroded the bricks. And so - the city council - which is always after new projects has decided to refurbish the promenade. It will cost seventy thousand dollars and will use a more durable covering called stamp-concreting. Mayor Darrell Bradley explained:... Darrell Bradley - Mayor, Belize City Council "We did an inspection of certain public spaces throughout Belize City that we want to upgrade. When you look at the condition of the pavers that were there - they were in serious need of repairs and actually they haven't put down the stamp creating at the present moment, so if you go out there right now you would see that the pavers in another year or so would be totally beyond use. What we have decided to do is to upgrade that area to put another layer of cementing and it would be stamp-created within 2-3 weeks and we've gotten commitments from the Belize Tourism Board and they are going to give us a donation of benches. We've also done electrical works out there and we've put out 15 very nice lamps and we are awaiting additional electrical equipment from BEL and those will be in operation within another week. By the time the full project comes on stream it will be totally resurface - we're going to have park benches out there, the lights would be out there and we are talking about some additional works that would be going on to enhance the area."

Is Mayor Bradley Double Dipping?
As those projects show, you can't fault the mayor for ambition or execution - actually you can't fault him for much at all. In just a few months in office, his council has paved about 20 streets with concrete - and there are plans to pave many more. The Municipal Bond bill went to the house for a first reading last week - and the prospectus will be launched shortly. Indeed, the entire culture at City Hall seems to have been transformed in a short time, and as well corruption has been discouraged, making Darrell Bradley a model elected official. But might there be a chink in Mayor Bradley's otherwise impervious armor? Jules Vasquez thought so, and he brought it up with the mayor today. Here's how their conversation went:... Jules Vasquez "I have seen you in court since being elected and some people frond on it." Darrell Bradley - Mayor, Belize City Council "Some people have frond on it?" Jules Vasquez "Yes have frond on it that as an elected public official and one that's being paid for fulltime work. I know you are not being paid like you were as a lawyer. However some people have frond on it saying that as an elected official and as a senior elected official perhaps you shouldn't be in court. Explain what's your rationale and how you manage this."

Bze City Registered ISP Hawking Counterfeit Sites
An offshore company registered in Belize is making a bad name for this country again. The name is AltusHost; it is an Internet Service Provider Registered at 2236 Albert Hoy Street, in Belize City, with its Corporate Office in Stockholm, Sweden. According to PC World Magazine, a court in The Hague ruled that AltusHost has to take down 25 domains which are selling counterfeit goods. The websites include bestwatchonsale.com, cheap-watch.org, breitlingwatches-replica.com and fakewatchesuk.org. The complaint is brought by Eleven companies, including Chanel, Christian Dior and Omega. PC World reports that about half of the approximately 6,000 domains hosted by AltusHost fall into the counterfeiting category - a claim which AltusHost flatly refutes. We note that the same Albert Hoy Street address was also used as an address for another company recently involved in a prohibited phone service called toll bypass.

Shayna's Struggle Ends
3 weeks ago, 7News told you about 19 year-old Shayna Lightfoot, a cancer patient who was stuck in Merida because her family couldn't pay her medical bills. Tonight, we report that she passed away, not at Clinica De Merida in Mexico, but at the KHMH in Belize. According to her mother, Era Lightfoot, the entire family staged a big fundraising event and was able to amass $8,000 BZ, which they paid toward the medical bills. The Mexican hospital, after seeing the family's commitment to pay, allowed Shayna to come back to Belize, and she continued to receive treatment at the KHMH up until last week. She was able to spend her 20th birthday in Belize, but a complication forced the doctors to attempt an emergency surgery on Friday. They couldn't do anything more for her, and at 9 p.m., she passed away.

Premium Fuel, About To Break Thirteen Dollars A Gallon
In May we told you about a sharp drop in the price of premium fuel as it went down by 81 cents. Well the pendulum has swung further in the other direction and - tonight premium fuel is verging on 13 dollars a gallon, more than it has ever been before. Last night at midnight, the price of premium fuel went up by 94 cents, while regular went up by 88 cents. The brings the controlled pump price for a gallon of premium to a painful 12 dollars 97 cents per gallon, while regular is at 11 dollars 95 cents a gallon. For the time being, diesel has remained unchanged.

UB Belmopan Gets thoroughly Modern Solar Array
The University of Belize has the largest most modern array of solar energy panels in Belize. The agreement for a cooperation project with the Japanese Government was signed two years ago, construction started last year - and the impressive grid was declared open on Friday. It is a 450 kilowatt system designed to introduce clean energy to Belize by solar power. The non-resident Japanese Ambassador explained its technological pre-eminence. H.E. Ambassador Hiroshi Yamaguchi, Ambassador of Japan to Belize "The Government of Japan is honored to call you pioneer partners in the process of promoting the most advance solar energy system of the world here in Belize." Hon. Godwin Hulse, Minister of Local Government "On the technical side, it introduces Belize to an alternative renewable energy source and ultimately should contribute to a reduction in the country's energy bill. Dependency on fuels and the primary means of electricity generation whether generated locally or imported from our neighboring Mexico is no longer a very promising option."

Nello Player Wins Patriotic Song Contest
Every year, the September Celebrations Season begins with the National Song Competition, where Belizean performers and composers vie for the prizes and the prestige. On Saturday, this year's competition was held at MCC Grounds - a change in venue because the Memorial Park is still not ready - and it was broadcast live on this station. But, for those of you who might have missed it, we caught up today with Nello Player, one of the winners, and he told us about the message behind his patriotic song. Here's what he told us: Nello Player, Artist "The song is called "Celebrating Belize" and it's just as the songs says, it's our 31st year of Independence and we are celebrating our anniversary. We are celebrating Belize come September time, this is the season for celebration and I wrote the song with that in mind - there is always an element to the songs that I put out in September. We have an obligation as artists to reach out to our past." "I met a teacher yesterday and she told me that she loves the songs but none of the kids knew what I was talking about. So this is a good opportunity for them to inquire about certain things they hear in the song to the teachers."

Who's Little Miss Independence?
On Friday night, we told you about the 4th Annual Independence Day Junior Miss- Pageant. It was held at the Bliss Center for the Performing Arts last night. The winner of this year's pageant was Abigail Castellanos, and here's her crowning moment:

Channel 5

Gunman chased Miraldo Alvarez and killed him
Early on Friday night, another life was lost in one of the hot spots on the south side of the City where at least six shootings have taken place in the past few months. A resident of McKenzie Street was on his way to buy food when a hail of bullets abruptly ended his life. [...]

Questions surround death of 18 year old Security Guard in P.G.
In the south, another man was found dead but the circumstances of his death are still unclear. Punta Gorda Police are investigating the strange death of an eighteen year old security whose body was discovered in Big Falls, Toledo, on Sunday morning. Descartes Santiago Bol Junior was partying at a club on Saturday night when [...]

Central Bank talks about upcoming Superbond meeting
Aside from crime, there is the Superbond for which there has been international backlash after government did not make a forty-six million dollar coupon payment that was due on August twentieth. The debt review team is making its media rounds after concluding talks in Washington with the IMF. The governor of the Central Bank, Glen [...]

Possible default in September
It is very unlikely that the negotiations will wrap up before the September nineteenth deadline; so what happens if the country defaults on the Superbond? While there is a small window after the deadline to engage bondholders, Ysaguirre says the consequences would include further downgrading of the sovereign credit rating and Belize might be branded [...]

7 persons homeless after fire guts building
Three families, including three school aged children are homeless after their house was gutted by fire at around eleven-thirty on Saturday morning. The cause of the fire is still unknown, but fire officials say that the blaze started inside the front part of the wooden structure and spread quickly through the house shared by the [...]

2 shot in Belize City
Aside from the murder on Saturday night, there was more gun violence on the South Side. A recent spate of shootings in the area behind the Charles Bartlett Hyde Building, known as Gungulung, has resulted in the attempted murder of a teenager. Nineteen year old Raheem Nicholas, a Belize City student, is tonight recovering from [...]

GSU accused of brutality?
A disturbing incident involving a team of officers attached to the Gang Suppression Unit, which resulted in allegations that as many as twenty Crooked Tree residents were physically assaulted, remains under investigation tonight. A group of young men, reportedly practicing for a weekend basketball tournament, came under attack last Monday when GSU personnel descended upon [...]

60 scholarships courtesy of Restore Belize and B.N.E.
But there’s some good news; sixty students are getting a shot at a secondary education through a partnership of Restore Belize and the B.N.E. Charitable Trust. The students will be a part of the “I am Belize” Scholarship Program and by extension will get internship and mentorship opportunities. Last week, B.N.E. Trust handed over a [...]

European Union gives $75,000 in relief to hurricane victims
Hurricane Ernesto brought heavy rains in the north when it diverted to the Yucatan Peninsula. The European Union says it will be providing relief to a hundred and fifty affected families. The EU, via the European Commission and its Humanitarian Aid and Civil Protection department, has agreed to give over thirty thousand Euros, the equivalent [...]

Grassroots organization get donation from Kentucky Church
Self Development of the People is a humanitarian group that is supported by the Presbyterian Church of Kentucky, USA. The group promotes and supports sustainable development projects. Recently it has committed to fund projects in Belize for a period of six years. So far the Sandy Beach Women’s Cooperative and the Hopkin’s Farmer’s Cooperative have [...]

Hardest working Mayor has 2 jobs?
Two weeks ago, Mayor Darrell Bradley announced that he was floating a bond for twenty million dollars to repair at least fifty percent of the city’s streets, including the major thoroughfares. If you drive through the city or if you walk across town, you would have noticed a major improvement in the condition of streets [...]

Chukka wins award for awesome tours!
Chukka Belize has won a prestigious award from a major cruise line. According to a release from the tour operator, Princess Cruises has named its Jungle Zipline Adventure and Cave Tubing tour as the 2011-2012 “Tour of the Season” in Belize. Princess Cruises has been giving annual awards to operators in its ports of call [...]

2 manatees rescued by CZMAI and Sea to Shore Alliance
Last week the Coastal Zone Management Authority and Institute (CZMAI) and the Sea to Shore Alliance were informed about manatees who were harbored for days in Vista Del Mar near the Oar Restaurant. The assessment team found out that one manatee was seriously injured across its back and the fin on another was caught in [...]

Solar Energy project handed over to U.B.
On August sixteenth, the media was invited to tour the multi-million dollar solar energy project at the Belmopan campus of the University of Belize. That facility, which was funded under the grant aid for environment and climate change program by the Japanese International Cooperation Agency (JICA), was formally inaugurated and handed over this past Friday. [...]

Moses Sulph delivers the goods and services to students
Summer vacation is officially over as schools reopened across the country today. On the south side of Belize City, about three hundred needy students from eleven schools have the stationery they need thanks to a new charity foundation called Hand of Mercy. You’ll recognize its Executive Director, the outspoken former President of COLA, Moses Sulph, [...]

And the winner of the song competition is…
September fever is spreading; the 2012 Celebrations calendar of activities got underway this weekend. On Saturday, the festivities were kicked off with the national song competition which featured the carnival and patriotic junior and senior song competition. The annual event was held at the MCC grounds where all the competitors performed their entries to a [...]

James Adderley and Sports Monday with the play by play
Good evening, I’m James Adderley and welcome to this delivery of Sports Monday.   The 6 best women’s softball teams in the Jewel congregated inside Roger’s Stadium over the weekend in a bid to emerge as champion in the 22nd National Softball Championships that lent itself to a double elimination format. By Sunday evening, only [...]

LOVE FM

Police News
There was a murder last Friday night in Belize City. It happened just before ten that night in the Lake Independence area and claimed the life of twenty year Miraldo Alvarez, an unemployed of Guzman Crescent in the Belama Phase one Extension area. Alvarez was shot in the lo...

Investigations Against GSU Concludes Shortly
Last week Love News reported on the allegations of abuse of authority by elements of the Gang Suppression Unit on youths in Crooked Tree Village last Tuesday night. After that incident, we also brought you the update of visits made to Crooked Tree by the Commissioner of Police, D...

Winners Selected for National Song Competition
The fifth annual national song competition took place on Saturday night in Belize City. Joseph Stamp Romero is the Coordinator of the event. JOSEPH STAMP ROMERO Coordinator National Song Competition “Patriotic first place in the junior division &n...

Subscription Deed Signed for Belize Sugar Industry
The sale of Belize Sugar Industries factory at Tower Hill in Orange Walk to the group American Sugar Refineries is all but complete. Today, the Minister of National Emergency Management, Senator Godwin Hulse told Love News that all the intricate details of the deal have been work...

BNE Trust and Restore Belize Awards Scholarships
Last Thursday the BNE Trust handed over a cheque of 40 thousand dollars to Restore Belize to assist in its I am Belize Scholarship Fund. On hand to receive the cheque was Marie Munoz of Restore Belize who said the scholarship fund is geared towards assisting underprivileged stude...

Pallotine Sisters Celebrate 100 Years
Plans have begun in connection with a nationwide celebration for one hundred years of the presence and outstanding services of Pallotine Sisters in Belize. Correspondent Paul Mahung has the details. PAUL MAHUNG Toledo Correspondent Love FM “A ...

Belize's Super Bond Negotiations Inevitable
Belize’s external debt, also known as the sovereign bond and commonly referred to as the super bond, continues to generate a lot of interest in the international financial services sector. Following the missed coupon payment of twenty three million US dollars last week, the ratin...

European Commission Assists Victims of Hurricane Ernesto
The European Commission is allocating seventy five thousand and thirty seven Belize dollars to bring relief to the victims of Hurricane Ernesto in Belize. According to a press release issued by the organization, The European Union through the European Commission and its Humanitar...

Man Arrested for Chopping His Sister
A woman from the Stann Creek District is hospitalized at the Karl Heusner Memorial Hospital after she was reportedly chopped by her brother. Correspondent Harry Arzu has the story. HARRY ARZU Dangriga Correspondent Love FM “On Sunday, August 27, sometime in ...

LOVE TV

Investment in the sugar industry by US group almost complete
The sale of Belize Sugar Industries factory at Tower Hill in Orange Walk to the group American Sugar Refineries is all but complete. Today, the Minister of National Emergency Management, Senator Godwin Hulse told Love News that all the intricate details of the deal have been worked out. Minister Hulse explained that the categorization of the deal as a takeover of the sugar industry is not all together accurate and he says that there were not big concessions given to ASR to complete the deal. The American Sugar Refineries Incorporated deal is expected to result in the modernization of the sugar industry. ASR owns sugar mills in the United States, Dominican Republic and Mexico.

Financial adviser confident of super bond renegotiation deal
Belize’s external debt, also known as the sovereign bond and commonly referred to as the super bond, continues to generate a lot of interest in the international financial services sector. Following the missed coupon payment of twenty three million US dollars last week, the rating agency Standard and Poor downgraded Belize and was followed later in the week by Moody’s investor services. In the case of the Wall Street-based Moody’s Investors Service, the agency lowered Belize’s local currency bond and deposit ceilings to B2 from B1. The foreign currency country ceilings on bonds and deposits remain unchanged at Caa2. Moodys in its report released late last week, said it expects the government will formally default following the expiration of a 30 day grace period in September, unless a restructuring agreement is reached before then. Belize’s debt renegotiation team, headed by Ambassador Mark Espat was in Washington, D.C. over the weekend for meetings with officials of the Inter-American Development Bank and the International Monetary fund. According to Minister Godwin Hulse, who is also a member of the debt restructuring team, the talks with the IDB were very positive and now the team awaits support from the IMF. Belize has published its three-pronged offer towards a negotiated restructuring of the five hundred and forty seven million US dollar foreign debt. Advisor to the Minister of Finance Allan Slusher today told Love News that those three scenarios published earlier this month are solid starting points for the government of Belize, given what is at its disposal going into the negotiations. Slusher says he is optimistic that the solution will come after what he called a choreographed maneuvering by the bond holders. According to Moody’s Investor Services, the super bond, accounts for 48 per cent of total central government debt and 57 per cent of Belize’s external debt. The agency noted that the indicative scenarios released by the government on August 8 – a par bond and two discount bond options – resulted in bondholders absorbing losses of 70-80 per cent in net present value terms. Moody’s continue to maintain that, quote: “the government’s decision to trigger a credit event and force investors to take deep haircuts is a credit negative development that increases the odds of a protracted debt exchange process,” end of quote.

Police press officer updates on weekend crime
There were a number of shootings that occurred in the old capital as well. Police cannot determine if the killing was gang-related, but Yearwood confirmed that Alvarez’ companion lives in the area where a known street gang operates. Meanwhile, a student was also shot on Saturday in the Lake I area, but his injury was less severe than Alvarez’, according to Yearwood. A second shooting happened on Saturday, this time on the northside of town. On Sunday, yet another shooting occurred, this time in the Collet Division near the Vernon Street Bridge. Last week Love News reported on the allegations of abuse of authority by elements of the Gang Suppression Unit on youths in Crooked Tree Village last Tuesday night. After that incident, we also brought you the update of visits made to Crooked Tree by the Commissioner of Police, David Henderson and by Belize Rural South Area Representative, Minister of State Edmund Castro, to meet with the youths and to discuss assigning a policeman in the village while plans to build a new police station there is finalized. Today at the police press conference, Inspector Yearwood told reporters that the Professional Standards Branch, which has replaced the Internal Affairs Unit of the Police Department, is investigating the allegations of abuse on youths. Police Press Officer, Inspector Fitzroy Yearwood, says that the police will release the details of a murder in the Toledo District shortly.

Toledo man found dead on the roadside
The body of a Punta Gorda Resident was found on Sunday morning on the Punta Gorda San Antonio Road. Correspondent Paul Mahung has the details. According to Police reports, Bol was seen socializing at Carolina Bar in Big Falls Village around 10:30 pm. He is said to have had an exchange of words with other customers and later left around 2:30 a.m. Bol is said to have borrowed the bicycle from a family member who resides near the dump and he rode off toward Punta Gorda Town. The body now awaits a post-mortem examination.

Clean Energy project handed over in Belmopan
The handing over of the project for the introduction of Clean Energy by Solar Electricity Generation System was held on Thursday of last week in Belmopan. The project is located at the main campus of the University of Belize in Belmopan. Speaking at the official handing over ceremony, President of UB Dr. Cary Frazer said the location of the facility at the UB campus is a benefit not only to the nation, but the University as well. The green energy project is a donation to the government of Belize by the Japanese International Cooperation Agency. On hand for the handing over was Japan’s ambassador to Belize Hiroshi Yamaguchi. The contract cost for the project which started in September of 2011, is listed at ten million dollars. According to Minister of Labor, Immigration and National Emergency Godwin Hulse, the project will benefit Belize in more ways than one. The local sub contractor for the establishment of the project is Medina’s Construction Limited.

BNE Trust contributes to Restore Belize
Last week the BNE Trust handed over a cheque of 40 thousand dollars to Restore Belize to assist in its I am Belize Scholarship Fund. On hand to receive the cheque was Marie Munoz of Restore Belize who said the scholarship fund is geared towards assisting underprivileged students from Belize City. Handing over the cheque was General Manager of the BNE Trust Sharon Ramclam. Ramclam said there are certain conditions attached to the scholarship such as students maintaining a passing grade, open and maintain a savings account at one of the financial institutions and be a part of the scholarship club.

Pallotine Sisters celebrate important milestone
Plans have begun in connection with a nationwide celebration for one hundred years of the presence and outstanding services of Pallotine Sisters in Belize. Correspondent Paul Mahung has the details.

Help for hurricane victims via the Red Cross
The European Commission is allocating seventy five thousand and thirty seven Belize dollars to bring relief to the victims of Hurricane Ernesto in Belize. According to a press release issued by the organization, The European Union through the European Commission and its Humanitarian Aid and Civil Protection department expresses its solidarity with the victims of Ernesto in Belize and as a major contributor to the Disaster Relief Emergency Fund of the International Federation of Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies, has agreed to use thirty two thousand three hundred and thirty five Euros of to help the victims. The aid will be used to support Belize Red Cross Society National Intervention Team members on the needs assessment phase to replenish pre-positioned stock and to assist the one hundred and fifty most affected families with food and relief items delivered by the BRCS for a period of three months. The aid will be channeled through the Red Cross, who operates with funding from the Disaster Relief Emergency Fund of the IFRC.

US-supported humanitarian agency funds local projects
A humanitarian agency, Self Development of the People, which is supported by the Presbyterian Church in Kentucky USA will fund a number of projects in Belize over the next six years. The group aims to develop and strengthen capacity groups to feed and sustain their communities. Cyntia Ellis Topsey, a community developer from San Ignacio Town told us more about the grants. Two other organizations based in Belize City namely the Regina Martinez Foundation and JUNA Neighborhood Association have already applied for grants from the Agency. Members of the Self Development of the People Agency were scheduled to be a part of today’s event but unfortunately they could not make it. We will have more on the scope of the agency’s work when representatives arrive in the country.

Winners of national song competition announced
The MCC grounds in Belize City came alive on Saturday night as the venue for the National Song competition. Nineteen performers in the Junior Patriotic, Senior Patriotic and Senior Carnival song Categories all showcased their talents onstage to the public and the judges ,James Sanker, Kenny Gladden, Jenniffer Lovell, Richard Moody and Colville Young Jr. At the end of the night only one person emerged as the winner in each category. Here are the highlights of Saturday night’s event. Tabulators for the competition were Shaheida Vega and Marcia Rodgriguez. The Winner for the Junior Patriotic song walked away with one thousand five hundred dollars, the Senior Patriotic song winner took home four thousand dollars and for the Carnival song, the winner also took home four thousand dollars. All prizes for the night amounted to over twenty five thousand dollars.

PlusTV

Belmopan Police say weekend death of Compre student was self defense
Our big story on Friday was the stabbing death of young Yasmani Aguirre who was inflicted with a fatal wound by Enr...

Senior Police Officers give opinion on decriminalization of marijuana
Late last month, the nation learnt via a press release from the Government of Belize’s Ministry of National Securit...

Belmopan Market Days to get Cultural injection!
Market Day in Belmopan is a great place for steals and deals. Well this Friday (AUG 31) there will be an added fea...

House discusses Mark Espat's Hallmark Company
The House Meeting got testy on Friday when Cayo South Area Representative, Julius Espat asked Prime Minister Barrow...

American Sugar Refining Inc still interested in Purchasing BSI
The buy over of the BSI sugar factory by American Sugar Refining, Inc. (ASR) is advancing well and on target. Meeti...

Nelo Player win September celebrations Song Competition
This past weekend The National Song Competition was held at the M.C.C. Grounds. The competition had three Junior En...

Belizean is new Football Vice President of UNCAF
The Football Federation of Belize issued a release recognizing Vice-President of the FFB Rawel Pelayo, appointment ...

European Commission donates to TS Ernesto Victims
The European Commission allocates funds to assist Belizean victims of Tropical Storm Ernesto. The storm passed over...

200 sent home as GOB Southside project winds down
The Government Southside Rejuvenation Project had been ongoing for 3 years (two years beyond its projected scope) b...

Men on bicycles targets of reckless gun violence.
Men on bicycles are targets of reckless violence. C.I.B. personnel visited the KHMH on Friday night (August 24). Th...

Bicycle gunman confronts then shoots 19 year old student
Around 7:45pm on Saturday night (AUG 25) Police visited the KHMH where they saw RAHEEM NICHOLAS, of Belize City suf...

Gentle shot by man on a bicycle
Just before midnight on Sunday (August 26) Police visited the KHMH where they saw 24 year old EDMUND GENTLE, of Bel...

Blogs

Heading home to Ambergris Caye
We'd had a wonderful time on our first trip to the Toledo District of Belize and re-visiting the Stann Creek District we'd previously enjoyed, but a week had flown by, and it was now time to head back north to Ambergris Caye. We had to get up quite early to catch the Hokey Pokey water taxi from Placencia to Independence as we wanted to catch the 7:30 am Express bus to Belize City. The Hokey Pokey leaves at 6:45 am, and we had to walk to the dock. That left us no time for breakfast -- or even coffee -- before leaving. Fortunately we'd bought some fiber cookies at the grocery store the day before, and I lucked out -- an enterprising local was selling cups of steaming hot coffee as we got onto the bus for just $1.50 BZ (75 cents US). Sold! Yes, it had sugar, which I usually don't take, but I didn't care. It tasted good, and the caffeine was what I was after anyway. It had rained quite a bit overnight, but fortunately had stopped in time for our walk to the dock and ride on the ferry. We met up with the traveling Canadian girls, Heather and Lauren, at the dock, and traded experiences. We find we have more in common with travelers their age than our own in many ways.

There are so many things to do in Belize
The barrier reef lies close to shore of Belize, which shelters the land and creates a calm turquoise sea – a veritable water sports playground. Sail, kayak or jet ski. Windsurf, kite surf or para-sail. Pretty much anything you can think of is available, waiting for you to have a go. A day’s sailing and snorkeling in crystal clear waters is (we think) a near-perfect way to spend your day. Here are some suggestions of things to do, right off your beach: Snorkel and island hop, Sail away, Wildlife wonder, Catch and cook, Paddle your own canoe (or kayak), Gone with the wind.

Six Inland Belize Adventures You Will Love
As Belize becomes one of the biggest boom areas of the Caribbean, affluent visitors—and more and more celebrities—soon find themselves switching from the adventures of island-hopping to Inland Belize Adventures. Below are six inland Belize Adventures you will love. horseback riding in belize Easy: Average Fitness level Medium: Active Outdoor level Difficult: Advanced Fitness level required Horseback riding: With hundreds of miles of riverside trails and forests to explore, traveling by horseback gives you a chance to take in your surroundings without all the effort. Take a carrot as a reward for your trusty steed. (Medium) Airboats: Experience nature at an exhilarating speed when you take an airboat tour of the wetlands. This fragile ecosystem is home to unique tropical plants, turtles and the American crocodile. (Easy) Canoeing: A canoeing trip on any of Belize’s picturesque rivers is a rejuvenating adventure. As you drift along clean, clear waters try to spot the noisiest animal in the Belize jungle, the howler monkey, in the trees overhead. (Easy to Medium) Caving: Belize is home to one of the most extensive cave systems in Central America. Visitors can choose whether they want to hike, float or swim through these ancient and stunning underground spaces. (Easy to Difficult) Ziplining: Get amazing views, and your adrenaline high, as you fly through the jungle canopy on a zipline. An ideal option for family fun, memories of this exciting activity will last a lifetime. (Medium to Difficult) Hiking: Enjoy extraordinary hikes in Belize including climbs to the majestic Victoria Peak, the lookout of the Thousand Foot falls, the tallest waterfall in Central America or the neighborhood Maya temple. (Easy to Difficult)

For fly fishing excellence – Caye Caulker is the place to be!!
Once again our fly fishing guides put our tiny island on the international map!! This weekend the 4th annual Tres Pescados was held in Ambergris Caye – this tournament is where the fly fishing elite from Belize and around the world join forces to both gather data on the fishing area and also raise funds for local charities. The idea of the tournament is to test both the fisherman and the Guides as each team of 3, comprises of a Guide and 2 Fisherman – together they must bring home and have weighed their best size and amount of fly fishing’s grand slam fish – Permit, Tarpon and Bonefish. Each year Caye Caulker brothers Parnell (Fly Treks) and Ken Coc (Anglers Abroad) compete for the fun of the sport, for the pride of Caye Caulker and of course, the title!! The past two years Ken Coc has dominated the competition by his team winning and also being crowned as the Lead Guide in the competitions. This year it was his brother’s turn to light up the pride of Caye Caulker as Parnell came in second with Ken coming a close 4th. With pride we must congratulate our Coc brothers as once again they did us proud. With this win sending a clear message (once again) to those who are interested in the sport of fly fishing , that Caye Caulker is indeed the island to be for competitive prices and quality guiding!!!

International Sources

Tips for photographing birds
Perhaps you've noticed something about photographing wildlife: It's really hard. The main problem, of course, is that animals will, almost without exception, fail to pose on cue. In fact, they refuse to take any direction from you at all. And if you thought it was hard to take a photo of a cat or a dog or a moose, just try to photograph birds. In the past, we've given some advice for shooting critters, but let's zero in on tips for capturing our feathered buddies. There are two common situations you'll encounter with your camera—sitting and waiting for a bird to land somewhere, and then shooting it while it's earthbound, or trying to catch a bird in flight as it zooms by overhead. Both are fun and can yield some rewarding photos, but it's a lot harder to snap a great photo of a bird in flight, because you need to pan the camera so you track the bird's motion in the viewfinder. I suggest that you start by shooting birds when they come to our home turf—when they settle down in trees, on posts, or on some other stationary spot. You'll have to act fast, though, because they probably won't stay long. Here are four things to keep in mind:

Mexico promotes regional open skies
Mexico is advocating for its neighboring countries—Belize, El Salvador, Honduras and Guatemala—to agree on an open skies policy to jointly market the leisure destination known as Maya World. Under open skies, participating countries would benefit where local carriers operate fifth, sixth and seventh freedom rights in the region, linking city pairs such as Tikal-Cancún and Monterrey-San Salvador. A spokesperson for Mexico’s State of Quintana Roo told local media that open skies would bring air fares down and the number of visitors up to 18% to the region within two years. If an agreement is reached, VivaAerobus said it could be ready to launch Cancún-San Salvador services by year end.


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#445337 - 08/28/12 01:49 PM Re: Today's Belize News: August 28, 2012 [Re: Marty]
Marty Online   happy

As Genes Learn Tricks, Animal Lifestyles Evolve
Early one evening a few years ago, I took a short hike with my wife, Jamie, in the Cockscomb Basin Wildlife Sanctuary in Belize. The large, lush reserve is known for its healthy population of jaguars, so, following closely behind our guide, we kept our eyes peeled for the elusive cats. We saw a few tracks and some claw marks on trees, but elected to leave the jungle before nightfall. We were very near the end of the trail when we were surprised by a large snake, about six feet long, crossing directly in front of us. Belize has lots of snakes, more than 50 species. Some can get pretty large, like the boa constrictor, which is impressive but harmless. This one was not harmless. Even in the darkening jungle, the triangular pattern on its back allowed me to identify it quickly as a fer-de-lance, the most dangerous snake in Belize. Excited, and comfortable that I was well out of striking range, I reached into my backpack for my video camera and flipped on its “night shot” feature. I now saw the magnificent snake clearly on my LCD screen. As I tried to creep in for a closer shot, however, I felt something holding me back. It was Jamie. She had a grip on my backpack and was concerned that my enthusiasm for snakes had overtaken my judgment. She was not convinced that we were out of range, nor that the snake would not move quickly toward us. I used the zoom and filmed from where I stood. For me to film the snake in the dark, I had to rely on Sony’s innovation and engineering. The camera’s infrared LED source generated light with a longer wavelength than the human eye can detect; those photons then bounced off the snake and were detected by the camera’s infrared sensors and converted into an image.

Belizean authorities revoke Mello’s residency
The Belizean Immigration Ministry has reportedly annulled the residence permit for Karol Mello, a Slovak fugitive who faces at least two charges for organising murders back in 2003 and 2004. The ministry claims that he received it under false pretences, the Belizean website Reporter.bz wrote on August 24. Mello’s lawyer Godfrey Smith said that his client wants to stay in Belize and intends to do so, accepting any consequences that may follow. Belize cannot extradite Mello to Slovakia, because it has no extradition treaty with the country. However, the government of Belize could declare him persona non grata, i.e. an unwelcome person, by executive decree, and there is no legal defence against that, the Reporter.bz wrote.


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