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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

EU underlines commitment to universal abolition of the Death Penalty
The following is a statement from Catherine Ashton, European Union High Representative for Foreign Affairs and Security Policy, on the European and World Day against the Death Penalty, 10 October 2012. Today is World and European Day against the Death Penalty. The European Union is opposed to the use of capital punishment in all cases and under any circumstances. Its universal abolition is one of the key objectives of EU human rights policy. Catherine Ashton, High Representative of the Union for Foreign Affairs and Security Policy/Vice-President of the Commission, said: “Capital punishment is a cruel, inhumane and irreversible action that violates the basic human right to life and dignity. In the case of any miscarriage of justice, from which no legal system is immune, it represents a terrible and irreversible loss of human life. The death penalty can neither reverse the crime it seeks to punish nor mitigate a victim’s loss. It should be a relic of the past.”

Amigos del Mar speaks on accident that resulted in one death
On October 8th, at about 4:45PM a very unfortunate accident claimed the life of one of our employees. Hector Duran, known to us as Chapin, has been with the Amigos del Mar Dive Shop for the past 20 years and was one of our most experienced and veteran employees. All the relevant authorities were facilitated to conduct the necessary investigation into the very unfortunate tragedy. The family has expressed that they prefer confidentiality and as such further details will be disclosed only when the family choose to do so. The incident is very unfortu

Patriotic events end at Isla Bonita Elementary with two competitions
The Isla Bonita Elementary School concluded their patriotic events on October 5th with two competitions for the upper division classes. One was an individual poster competition and the other, a group competition highlighting the main national historical buildings in Belize. The competitions were held under the national celebration theme, “Many Faces, Many Dreams, One Goal; Celebrating Belize,” and was open to standard V and VI students. In the poster competition, students were asked to come up with a poster that best portrayed the National September Celebration theme. A total of 27 students took part in the competition after which four entries were chosen as the best posters. First place went to Kai Nunez, second place to Nashley Badillo and third place was awarded to Gian Guerrero and Tyreek Arzu.

Ambergris Today

Twin Towns San Ignacio And Santa Elena Protest Against Crime
Members of the Cayo Community met on Sunday evening, October 7, 2012 at the Sacred Heart Primary School in San Ignacio where demands were written on a chalkboard, with certain plans of action, to take place within a time-frame. Among the demands were that Belize have its own forensic laboratory, the police be properly equipped and a registry for sex offenders be created. Another major demand was for a Police Station to be built in Santa Elena Town. Present at the meeting was Ralf Moody, Officer in Charge of the Cayo Police District Formation, who informed the gathering that statements relating to the murder of Suzenne Martinez are still being taken. The Superintendent urged the community to think about the consequences, in whatever action it takes. He said that if a shutdown of the Towns was made this Monday, such actions would delay the sending of the DNA sample to Jamaica by an additional day; as a policing priority would have to take place. "Some people are waiting for the opportunity to commit crime", he said, adding that in such cases the law will take its course.

Belize to Receive Forensic Ballistic System from Canadian Government
The Government and People of Belize are receiving much-needed assistance from friendly governments and international agencies as we continue to fight against crime and violence in order to restore safety and security throughout our communities. This coming Friday, October 12, 2012, inauguration ceremonies will be held for an Integrated Ballistic Identification System donated to Belize by the Canadian Government. The donation constitutes a complete system (IBIS Brass Trax -3D) with full capability to collect, store, compare, analyze and prepare conclusive reports on ballistic evidence to assist law enforcement authorities in investigation, prosecution and conviction of persons involved in firearm related crimes.

Letters to the Editor: Caye Caulker Deserves Better Police!
Caye Caulker has come a long way from being a simple little village to a tourist attraction. During the years people have migrated to the island in search for a better way of living. With this it has made the population of our little island increase. As the years go by all types of people come to our island, the good and the bad. Caye Caulker has always been known as the “Go Slow” island and considered to be relaxing as well. Back then, when small crimes started to occur, the police officers didn’t hesitate to get down to the bottom of the incident and find out exactly what happened and who was involved in it and if the culprits were found, they were punished and sent away from the island. Back then we had “the law” behind us and now it seems as the law no longer exists on this island.

Misc Belizean Sources

Drama in Belize City 1829

Ignite the Peace Rally
The University of Belize will be teaming up with Sacred Heart Junior College and Galen University on Thursday for the Ignite the Peace Initiative. In Belmopan, at 8:00am, they'll have the Eternal Flame of Peace March, then the torch run from Belmopan to Cayo, and at 11:00, at Columbus Park, the peace rally. "In light of the recent loss of our Norval Belisle and Suzenne Martinez and our valuable human resources, our nations students, the tertiary level institutions have teamed up to raise awareness and to unite their voices against the violence and crime in Belize."

BTL's Yellow Pages App
Belize Telemedia Limited has an app for their yellow pages. You can download it for free to your smartphones from their site, or at the app store. "Download your FREE BTL Yellow Pages App today!"

Jaguar Education from Belize Zoo
The Belize Zoo has been having an awareness campaign about jaguars and their protected status. They went to Caledonia village, where a jaguar was poached recently, and spoke at the local school to the children. Thanks, TBZ! "it's a follow up to the incident that happened in the village several weeks ago and the objective was to turn it into something positive to involve this community that have these jaguars and other wildlife very near their community and interact with them probably on a daily basis and the whole concept is simply education and awareness making them have a sense of pride and respect for these animals that they live in close contact with every single day and for them to understand our value in the conservation of our forest and in all the industries that its connected to."

VIDEO: The Birds of Belize
Great 60 min. video with 277 species of birds from all around Cayo and Belize. You can buy the DVD, and all the proceeds are solely for the benefit of Belizean non-profit/NGOs and education in Belize. "This is the most recent version (Version 8) of The Birds of Belize DVD which now covers 277 species. Filmed entirely in Belize beginning in 2005, it now includes film from 2012 which covers species not recorded in previous versions as well as improved film of some species that were included in prior versions."

Miss International Online Poll
You can vote for Destinee Arnold as she represents Belize at the Miss International pageant. The pageant is in Okinawa, Japan this year, and Destinee is having a great time hanging out with all the other contestants. You can vote for Destinee for 'Miss Internet.'

Lasagna/Lasagne
Lasagna is a type of casserole that uses cheese and wide flat noodles and spaghetti sauce to make a very comforting dish. We didn't have noodle while growing up in Belize, but I quickly learned to make this dish because not only is it tasty, but it is also very easy to make and very cheap. This recipe is simply and does not use a lot of ingredients.

Channel 7

Government Unions Agree to Partial Collective Bargaining Agreement
Since September, 2008, the government and its employer unions - namely the Public Service Union, the Belize National Teachers Union and the Association of Public Service Senior Managers have been negotiating a new collective bargaining agreement. At the outset, the unions presented a 23 point proposal, but talks have been bogged down for years. Recently, the Unions started getting antsy - and in response government appointed a ministerial subcommittee to move things along. That was in August and it surely did speed things along, because after a little more than four years, a partial agreement was signed this afternoon at the Radisson in Belize City. 7news was there and here's what all parties had to say: Marvin Blades, President PSU "Although the journey has been long and sometimes arduous we have come this far. The signing of today's partial agreement - this event however merely represents a progress report to our membership and to the general public. We now continue to diligently work towards the resolution of the outstanding proposals."

BEL Desperate For Bailout, Offers HQ As Security
The Social Security Board has fast tracked the approval a 15 million dollar investment in BEL. It's basically bailout money for the power company, which seems to be in dire straits financially - so much so that it's willing to offer its headquarters as security for the investment. 7news has seen the leaked copy of an internal memo from the Manager of Investments to the CEO Richard Flowers. It states that in the first quarter of this year, BEL incurred a loss of 2.6 million dollars - but does not report the figures for the second or third quarters. Still the power company predicts a year-end profit of 6.9 million dollars. BEL offered Social Security 10 million dollars in preference shares - with their headquarters as security. But BEL is in such a rush for the infusion of cash that no valuation for those properties has been concluded. BEL's investment committee and its board approved 10 million dollars in preference shares with a yield of 5% and 5 million in debentures at 7%. The prospectus for those debentures is still in draft form. Due to the late breaking story, we could not get comment from BEL, but we do know that high fuel prices and the high cost of power from CFE in Mexico have put the company in a liquidity bind - similar to the one faced by the previous owner.

Central Bank Gov's Home Invaded
This afternoon we saw the Crimes Investigation Branch and the Scenes of Crime unit at the residence of the Governor of the Central Bank on Coney Drive. Information is still sketchy at this time, but we have found out that there was a home invasion around 3:00 pm. Only the maid was at home - and not much is known beyond that at this time. We tried to reach the Governor Glenford Ysaguirre for comment but he was unavailable.

Ashcroft Attorneys Still Against Awich
Last night, we told you about the first day of the Court of Appeal sitting in which the BEL/BTL nationalizations were heavily argued. This matter is expected to be argued to completion tomorrow, and the Appeal Court will make a determination if the nationalizations were constitutional or not. But this decision may not matter because once again, the Ashcroft Alliance made a huge deal of the fact that Justice of Appeal Samuel Awich was a sitting member on the panel of judges overseeing this case. As we reported last night, the Alliance, through several of the functionaries - including Lord Ashcroft himself - tried to get Justice Awich unseated as a member of the Court of Appeal, when the process was being finalized for his appointment in July. Yesterday, they raised the point that there was an appearance of bias because of their maneuvering which effectively put Justice Awich at odds with them. You heard attorney Denys Barrow explain that this was a problem of their making, and they tried to apply further pressure to get Awich to recuse himself from the case.

More Mexican Drugs In Corozal
Mexican drug players continue to show up in Corozal. On Sunday evening at about 6, Corozal police found a Mexican and two Belizeans with drugs. They visited C&B's Bar on Baeza's Layout in Corozal Town and searched a Silver SUV. The search resulted in the discovery of a 6 small transparent bags of cocaine. All three men, 52 year old Pedro Alfonso Betancourt Reed, a Mexican of Chetumal, 51 year old Alfonso Iglesias Jr, a Belizean of Consejo Road in Corozal Town, and 51 year old Jose Nunez, a Belizean Businessman of San Pedro Town were detained and escorted to the Corozal Police Station. That's where further searches were conducted on the vehicle leading to the discovery of another black plastic bag under the passenger seat containing twelve small transparent plastic bags with cocaine.

Hon. Wilfred Will Meet Cayo Community
Tomorrow night, the Community in Cayo will be able to grill the Attorney General about the problems with the justice system. Further to a meeting yesterday between the Prime Minister and the leaders of the Cayo Neighborhood Watch Association, the PM has dispatched AG Wilfred Elrington to Cayo for a meeting to be hled tomorrow night. The meeting will be held at 7:00 pm at the ITVET Building. And then, on Thursday, the community is being asked to participate in a voluntary all day shutdown form 7:00 am to 6:00 pm to protest against crime - as a part of the Solidarity for Peace effort which will include a demonstration in front of the town's police station.

The Importance OF ICT
There's an ICT Roadshow which is coming to a city or town center near you. It started off today in Belize city where there was a discussion of ICT and an ICT fair to give regular folks the chance to interact with technology. IT was held at the ITVET campus and we had to chance to get a number of perspectives - including the official position - which is that technology is transformative and should be in the hands of as many people as possible:.. Bernadette Lewis, Sec. Gen. Caribbean Telecom Union "In our work in the countries across the region we have found that there is a fundamental lack of understanding and Telecom union appreciation of how information and communication technologies could be effectively incorporated in every endeavor to transform and it is because of this that we undertook this Caribbean ICT Roadshow initiative to bring to ordinary citizens - to bring to the largest cross section of the national community how information and communication technologies can be incorporated effectively to transform."

Cops Find 12 Gauge Abandoned
On Monday evening police conducted a search in an abandoned lot on Gibnut Street. They found 1 Berretta 12 gauge shotgun and two live cartridges. Also discovered was 85 grams of suspected cannabis. All the items were labeled as found property.

Coastal Zone Considers Climate Change
The Belize Coastal Zone Management Authority and Institute is hosting a three-day Regional Conference called, "Integrating Climate Change Adaptation Planning into Coastal Zone Management using Ecosystem Services". There are experts from all over including Jamaica, Barbados, Trinidad & Tobago, Colombia, Guatemala, Canada, the United States and Belize. They are discussing the realities of climate change and how we'll all have to make space for each other:.. Representative "Climate change has been affecting the world for a long time. We can measure increase in temperature and changes in storm intensity and rising sea levels. Even if you believe none of that is happening what this conference is doing is really important because its helping people plan for how to used their coastlines and marine waters in sensible ways so that human activity don't bump up against each other and cause conflict. Fishing and recreation and tourism activities can occur together in a way that neutrally beneficial for as many people as possible." "Certain areas are much more important for protecting livelihoods and property and people safety than others, so you can get these overlapping these win win areas and other cases you need to say okay this area we can develop - it will boost tourism revenues and it won't cause reductions as much and livelihoods for lobster fishers. You can find places where development has less of an impact on lobster and property damage and other places where it would have huge impact and you can use that information to say okay where can we allow development? Where can we have fishing? Where can we have recreation - so it minimizes the conflicts."

Faber Says He's Happy to Help OW Tech
students walked out. Well, today things returned to normal - and that's after Education Minister Patrick Faber went there to mediate between the disgruntled staff and the hardline principal. He today told us he doesn't mind taking a day out of his schedule if something meaningful will be achieved:.. Hon. Patrick Faber, Minister of Education "They had not ask me and in fact it's probably not normal for the minister to intervene in a situation like that at least not that early but Marion you know I am of the view that we should not allow these things to get out of hand, we've seen where situations at these high schools have gone and not only high schools but primary schools even have gone terribly wrong and when that happens the name of the school suffers and also the children, the students suffer and so if it takes me taking a time out of my schedule that I am sure everybody understands is terribly busy - going there to sit down with all the players to try to work things out to over kill the situation even before it gets out of hand then I believe that the right thing to do and so it saves me a lot of headache down the road to give up that day to try to work out the situation."

Avoiding The Perils Of SCUBA Tanks
Last night, 7News showed you the tragic accident of the well-known tour guide from the Amigos Del Mar Dive Shop. As we reported that around 4:45 pm yesterday, Hector Chapin Duran was fatally injured when the scuba tank he was filling ruptured - causing a major explosion which punctured his midsection and caused instant death. It happened at the Amigos Del Mar Dock. The authorities still have not released any indications as to what caused the tank to explode in such a strange way. Today, we got a chance to speak to several employees of Fabrigas, a Belize City company that prides itself on international standards of safety. Here's what they told us about the many things that could have gone wrong: Ezquiel Ayala, Plant Manager - Fabrigas "Many factors that can contribute to an accident at any filling stations. It can be the accuracy of the gauges; first of all my gauge is showing it is 3,000 but how accurate am I knowing that my gauge is reading 3,000 and actually it can be reading more, it can be reading less. I am not sure. We need to make sure, we need to verify our gauges from time to time and also we need to ensure that when filling we do not do what we call a fast fill. People tend to just come and say I want this fill and out of sudden it is not filled like that because the aluminum does not allow when heated for huge expansion - it will burst. It should be filled slightly. It takes time to fill yes but it's the safest way."

Channel 5

Explosion kills San Pedrano while refueling dive tank
A veteran diver was killed in a blast at Amigos del Mar in San Pedro on Monday evening. The loud explosion shook the dive shop, and other buildings in the neighborhood. Many immediately set out to help Hector Duran, who has been employed with the company for over twenty years. Duran succumbed to injuries sustained [...]

Shutdown of Cayo as residents protest against crime
Heading west, a business shutdown is being planned for Thursday by a coalition of neighborhood watch groups called the Solidarity for Peace Movement. If all goes according to plan, most of the business community will be closed for the day to protest the wave of crime and the recent murder of Suzenne Martinez. Simultaneously, two [...]

Central Bank Governor’s house robbed
Crimes involving high profile personalities are on the rise. The details are sketchy but News Five has confirmed that the house of Glen Ysaguirre, the Central Bank Governor was robbed this afternoon. A man under the guise of a deliveryman took a parcel to the governor’s residence on Coney Drive. Once the housekeeper opened the [...]

Do you believe the death penalty will deter crime?
Tonight’s question is: Do you believe the death penalty will deter crime? Send your comments and responses using your SMART phones to 8686 or post your vote on our e-poll at channel5belize.com. You can also send an email with your comments to questions@channel5belize.com.

Economic Indicators breaks down cost of fuel
Have you ever wondered why you pay such a high price for fuel at the pump? What is it that determines when the price falls and when it increases? Tonight we begin a series on the causes of the spike of fuel prices at the pump and if these are determined by prices on the [...]

CCJ will decide on Awich in ongoing Telemedia Appeals Court case
The Court of Appeal has been busy this week with a courtroom full of lawyers arguing the constitutionality of the 2011 acquisition of Belize Electricity Limited (B.E.L.) and the 2011 re-acquisition of Telemedia. Arguments continued today and were centered around the validity of the enshrinement by Government of those nationalizations in the country’s Constitution via [...]

P.S.U. and B.N.T.U. sign years overdue agreement with G.O.B.
The unions and the government have been negotiating for years and earlier today the government agreed to a long list of allowances when they signed off an agreement on part of what the unions had initially proposed. For the past four years, joint negotiations have been ongoing between the Public Service Union, Belize National Teacher’s [...]

Partial agreement shows progress, but more negotiations ahead
While it has already been a long and rocky road, the negotiations are still not over. Public Service Union President, Marvin Blades says the signing of the partial agreement simply shows the progress, but there are several issues remaining on the table. But ministers Faber and Gibson also committed today to ensuring that it won’t [...]

2 Haitians, ten passports and 1 Haitian without documents
Three Haitian nationals, two naturalized Belizean and another who holds a visitor’s permit, were before the courts today to answer to separate charges including unlawful possession of passports. The first to be arraigned was thirty-four year old Sillon Oriental who was charged for failing to produce a visitor’s permit. Allegations are that Oriental entered Belize [...]

Another attempted robbery in the Jewel
A Belize City young man who thought the law had forgotten him after he made attempts to rob well-known Blue Marlin Restaurant in April of this year begins to serve his first night of a five year jail term for the crime of attempted robbery. On April eleventh, Russell James and another man, who goes [...]

Ride with Caribbean Information & Communications Technology Road Show
In an age of continuous technological advances, there are still many persons and households that don’t have basic internet access. Over the next few days, a Caribbean Information and Communications Technology Roadshow will be reaching out to those groups as well as the tech savvy to highlight the benefits of ICT. The road show also [...]

Harnessing the Power of Innovation; using technology for development
The theme for the event is “Harnessing the Power of Innovation – the engine for ICT enabled Caribbean development”. But Doctor Colin Young acknowledges that Belize is behind in technology when compared to other countries in the region. Both Young and Bernadette Lewis, CTU’s Secretary General agree that affordability, particularly for internet access, is going [...]

Frozen allowances exercise almost thawed; thousands saved
The Ministry of Public Service announced in July that a thorough review of public service allowances would be carried out. That process has been ongoing and its purpose is to trim the fat off the one point five million dollars that the ministry pays in allowances each month. All ministries and departments were required to [...]

Superstar! $10,000 up for grabs!
In an hour or so, Group B takes the stage at the Bliss for another round of competition to determine who will be the Next Superstar. Four safe groups will perform and the other will be determined from the knock out round after the judges give their nod. The excitement is building up because both [...]

LOVE FM

Woman Loses Home by Fire
Fire destroyed a house in Cotton Tree Village on Monday. Correspondent Fem Cruz reports. FEM CRUZ Belmopan Correspondent RSV Media Centre “Thirty five year old, McIntyre Bryan of Cotton Tree Village reported that on Monday night, October 8 sometime around 7:...

Prime Minister Meets With San Ignacio Residents
Prime Minister Dean Barrow met yesterday with a concerned group of residents of San Ignacio. Correspondent Elaine Berry has the story. ELAINE BERRY CAYO Correspondent RSV News Centre “Members of San Ignacio and Santa Elena community met with the Prime Minist...

Sales Representative Charged for Drug Trafficking
Twenty-one year old Shannon Martinez, a sales representative, was charged with drug trafficking for one point one grams of cocaine when she appeared in court yesterday. She pleaded not guilty to the charge. Senior Magistrate Sharon Fraser offered her a bail of $5,000.00 and adjourn...

Hopkins Residents Charged for Controlled Drug
Police in the Stann Creek district have arrested and charged a resident of Hopkins village for the crime of drug trafficking and possession of controlled drugs. He is Ashton Victor Nunez Vicente. Police say that around eight thirty on Friday morning, they visited Vice...

Drug Bust Leads to Three Arrests
Three persons including a Mexican national have been arrested and charged for the crime of drug trafficking. The men, fifty one year old Alfonso Iglesias Junior of Corozal town, fifty one year old Jose Nunez of San Pedro town, and fifty two year old Pedro Alfonso Betancourt Reed&nb...

Tour Guide Dies Following Explosion
A man from San Pedro town was killed in an explosion on Monday afternoon. The victim has been identified as thirty nine year old Hector Duran. Duran who worked at the Amigos Del Mar Dive Shop in San Pedro Town was killed around four forty five yesterday afternoon when a...

Attorney General Scheduled To Meet With San Ignacio Residents
Twenty four hours after a peaceful demonstration by residents of San Ignacio and Santa Elena, word from Cayo is the Attorney General Wilfred Elrington has been dispatched to meet with the residents to address their concerns regarding the judiciary. Under the Banner of Solidar...

CTV3

Who Is The Man Who Was Knocked Down
Orange Walk Police are tonight asking for the public’s assistance in identifying a man who was knocked down on Saturday night while riding his bicycle along the Philip Goldson Highway. Around 10:15 on Saturday night, the victim, who is described as being of Hispanic decent was riding his bicycle near the Mameyal Curve located between miles 59 and 60 of the Philip Goldson Highway when he was knocked down by a 1998 blue Dodge pickup truck driven at the time by 32 year old Belizean Construction worker of Guinea Grass Village, Donaldo Can. Can is said to have been traveling from Corozal to Orange Walk when upon reaching the Mameyal Curve he lost control of the vehicle and collided into the victim who was riding his purple bicycle in the opposite direction. The victim sustained a large cut wound across the abdomen, a severed left leg and a cut wound under the chin and lower lip and was transported to the Northern Regional Hospital where he was pronounced dead on arrival. At the time of the incident the victim was wearing a ¾ camouflage pants with a black short pants underneath, a red and grey t-shirt, white undershirt and brown belt. Police have detained Donaldo Can pending charges.

Concepcion Resident Attacked While Heading Home
Corozal Police are tonight looking for one man accused of inflicting several chop wounds to 28 year old Udilberto Moh, a Belizean laborer of Concepcion Village in the Corozal District. On Friday October 5th Moh was walking home when he was attacked by a man he identified as one Domingo Aban Melendez. Moh reported to police that Aban approached him with a machete and chopped him on the right shoulder and left middle and ring finger which were almost severed. As mentioned police are looking for Melendez in regards to this incident.

Teachers and Students Of O/W Technical High School Want Principal Gone
Classes were interrupted this morning Elizabeth Muschamp; she has been the principal for Orange Walk Technical High School since last year November but now the majority of the teachers and students are demanding that she be removed from her post. Their reasons are many and each student and teacher has their specificities as to why they want Muschamp out of the school. The teachers don’t want Muschamp to be fired but rather transferred to another school. Besides the teachers and students the security guards and vendors have a problem with Principal Muschamp, all of which was expressed in today’s peaceful demonstration. Our news team out on the scene and here is that report. Hipolito Novelo - Reporting Orange Walk Technical High School is home to over 800 students and 47 teachers. Its motto is “The school that cares” but it seems that the institution has lost that touch and the teachers and students are putting the blame on Principal Elizabeth Muschamp. To show their discontent 27 teachers and half of the student body walked out of class this morning.

Minister Faber Says He'll Listen To Teachers Concerns But Will Not Make Decision
As mentioned in the story, the Minister of Education Youth and Sports Honorable Patrick Faber along with Chief Executive Officer of the Ministry of Education David Leacock and Orange Walk District Education Manager Karla Alvarez, met with the staff, board and principal of the school this afternoon. We understand that while the Minister listened to the concerns of the staff, he also made it clear that legally he is not authorized to make any decisions on the concerns raised. Minister Faber also clarified that he was not at the meeting to make any decisions on the matters of concern raised by the staff but merely to establish a process by which the school could return to daily operation while at the same time ensuring that teachers concerns are heard and addressed while going through the right process. At the end of the meeting it was decided that classes will proceed as usual tomorrow. It was also agreed that: The board of directors will be fully constituted within two weeks and that officials from the Ministry of Education will meet with members of the board to sensitize them about the role and functions of the board, the principal and District Education Manager will meet with the staff to hear their concerns before the end of the week; this meeting will be preceded by a meeting between the principal and heads of department. All were in agreement that these meetings will be conducted in a tactful and respectful way on both sides and based on the information shared in these meetings; the board will deliberate and take appropriate actions to address concerns.

Residents Of Twins Towns Make Demands To Reduce Crime
The murder of 13 year old Jasmine Lowe back in June of this year made history when Belizeans came together, staged a protest in San Ignacio and demanded justice for the death of the 13 year old. The incarceration of Bert Vasquez, the man accused of murdering Lowe, seemed to have calmed the turbulent waters that flowed through San Ignacio. That perceived calmness; however, was interrupted on October 3rd when the dead body of 22 year old U.B student Suzenne Martinez was found in a drain on the same street where she lived. The death of Martinez and the fact that the man initially detained for carrying out the heinous murder was released from police custody, only to be re-arrested for other charges, prompted residents of San Ignacio and Santa Elena to once again carry out a demonstration against crime. At 5:30 this morning the crowd started to gather at the Columbus Park located right in front of the San Ignacio Police Station. This time the hundreds of demonstrators were passive, yet the message sent to Government was the same- action must be taken to reduce the violence and crime. With placards in hand protesters demonstrated their discontent and clamored for justice. Believing that Alberto Ical, the man initially detained as the main suspect of Martinez’s murder would appear at the San Ignacio Magistrate Court, demonstrators waited patiently under the scourging sun. But instead, Ical appeared before the Belmopan Magistrates Court where he pled guilty to handling stolen goods and was sentenced to 12 months in prison. Ical is said to have been found in possession of a number of items including a SIM card and assorted pieces of jewelry that were stolen from the home of 53 year retired U.S National Robert Lewis who was murdered while at his home in Mayan Mopan during a home invasion on Monday October 1st . Initially Ical was also considered the main suspect of Lewis’ murder. Due to the lack of evidence; however, Ical was charged for handling stolen goods instead of murder.

Hugo Chavez Re-elected As President
Hugo Chávez has won his fourth election in Venezuela, earning another six-year term as president. The election, the closest of Chávez's 14 years in power, thwarted the chances of his main rival Henrique Capriles to be the man to replace him. The result, currently standing at 54.4 per cent to 44.9 per cent with 90 per cent of votes counted, came as a surprise after early exit polls showed Capriles with a commanding 51-48 percent lead. In the end, however, Chávez came out over 1.3 million votes ahead. Voter turnout in the election was over 80 per cent, and even the primaries – when Capriles candidacy was confirmed by a broad coalition of anti-Chávez parties – attracted over 3 million votes. The new six-year term clears the way for Chavez, who is recovering from cancer, to consolidate state control over Venezuela's economy, possibly with more nationalization’s and continue his support for left-wing allies in Latin America and around the world.

PlusTV

Con artists arrested in Corozal
Also in Corozal, two con-artists have been arrested and charged. One Darrington Williams and George Vega who also g...

Mexican and 2 Belizeans arrested for cocaine
The crime situation in the Old Capital of Belize City has for a number of years now been on the increase. It has co...

EU opposed to capital punishment as inhumane
While many Belizeans seem to be calling for the death penalty, foreign entities have once again raised their voice ...

Belize represented in Miss International Pageant in Japan
Miss Belize 2012 Destinee Arnold is representing Belize in the highly prestigious Miss International Pageant to be ...

Belize will continue to benefit from the Petro-Caribe Agreement
Belize along with at least 17 other Caribbean nations will continue to benefit from the Petro-Caribe Agreement with...

San Pedro man fatally injured while filling scuba tank
There is always a certain risk when dealing with gases and tanks. One San Pedro man lost his life when a tank he wa...

Caye Caulker Chronicles

Belizean Scents: Product promoting Belize
This new product which sanitizes leaves your hands smelling very pleasant and is also a souvenir with a Belizean Flare. Belizean Scents is a travel size hand sanitizer custom made by Belize’s very own Vanessa Harris who is also the owner of Nexus Boutique in Belize City. The product is not made in Belize but she has been hands on with all decisions regarding the product. The Belize Tourism board has also expressed their approval and have promoted the product on their social media page. There are 3 different scents which are being introduced: Caribbean Sea, Belizean Bliss and Mayan Mango. Belizean Scents Hand Sanitizers These products are available for purchase at Nexus Boutique in Belize City, Medina’s Maya Ruins at the Philip Goldson International Airport, Captain Morgan’s Retreat in San Pedro and will also be available at Island Magic Resort in Caye Caulker by the end of the month.

Amandala

Benque resident killed in Melchor
A resident of Benque Viejo del Carmen who had gone over to the bordering Guatemalan town of Melchor De Mencos was found in that town yesterday morning around 8:30 a.m, in an area called Santa Elena Melchor, with his throat slashed; he had also been beaten in the face. Benque police and the family of Miguel Angel Gonzalez, 23, travelled to the area to recover his body. He was buried around 3:00 p.m. in the Benque Town Cemetery after funeral services at the Mount Carmel Church. The ceremony was conducted by Father John Robinson, while the readings were conducted by Vicky Arceo and Martin Lindo, Jr. Gonzalez’s sister, Marleni, told Amandala that they were at home around 8:30 a.m. yesterday when they received a call that something had happened to her brother in Melchor. They alerted the police, who travelled to Santa Elena Melchor with them. She identified him to the police and they were given permission to bring him to Belize. They are at a loss as to what led to his death. Marleni said that Gonzalez was employed as a driver at Vega Distributors, and they are not sure what time he went to Melchor on Saturday. She was told that he went over with two friends of his, but around 8:30 p.m., one of his friends returned and told them that he, Gonzalez, refused to come. The other friend has not yet been located.

Court of Appeal: Justice Samuel Awich stays
President of the Belize Court of Appeal, Manuel Sosa, and Justices Samuel Awich and Douglas Mendes were greeted this morning by two Queen’s Counsels, three Senior Counsels, a coterie of other attorneys and mountains of paper. The Government of Belize (represented by the Attorney General and Minister of Public Utilities) today began its appeal against the June, 2012 decision of Supreme Court Justice Oswell Legall to strike down the majority of the 2011 Acquisition Act and Order in relation to Belize Telemedia Limited (BTL) on the opening day of the final session of the year 2012 for the Court. Ten attorneys – three for the Government and a total of seven for the responding parties – appeared in court this morning. They are: for the Attorney General and Minister of Public Utilities in all cases, Senior Counsel Denys Barrow and attorneys Magali Perdomo and Illiana Swift; for the British Caribbean Bank (BCB) Limited, Queen’s Counsel Nigel Pleming, Senior Counsel Eamon Courtenay and Ashanti Arthurs-Martin and Pricilla Banner; and for the BTL Employees’ Trust and chief trustee and former BTL chairman Dean Boyce, Lord Peter Goldsmith QC, Godfrey Smith SC and Magali Marin-Young. (Courtenay and Martin also appear for Fortis Energy International (Belize) Inc., which is suing the same parties – the Attorney General and the Minister of Public Utilities – in the first two appeals).

Corozal’s Lisa’s Restaurant ceases operations after two robberies
The business has been held up twice in three weeks... Lisa’s Restaurant, located on Fifth Avenue in Corozal Town, has ceased operations after the restaurant was held up and robbed twice within three weeks. In the first incident that occurred on September 4, thieves got away with over $28,000, and then, in the second, more recent, holdup, thieves got away with around $500. But in the second incident, which occurred around 7:00 p.m. Thursday, customers were in the restaurant when the robbers aimed a gun at the owner, Weiquin Zhu, and demanded money. The owner told police that two men of dark complexion entered the restaurant, and one of them pointed a gun at him and demanded money. He cooperated and handed over around $500. The thieves took the money and ran out of the restaurant, up Fifth Avenue and disappeared into the surrounding area.

Business shutdown Thursday for Cayo!
Over 300 angry citizens converged today, Monday, at 6:00 in the morning, at the San Ignacio Magistrate’s Court to protest the rising crime rate, especially murder and rape, in the district. The protest, which ended about 3:00 p.m., was led by the People’s Coalition of San Ignacio, which made a number of demands on Prime Minister Dean Barrow, that were delivered today to him by a 3-person committee from the coalition. Among the demands are the removal of the Director of Public Prosecutions, Mrs. Cheryl-Lynn Branker-Vidal; the reinstatement of hanging; denial of bail for sexual offenders; denial of bail for major crimes; financing of a forensic lab; construction of a police station in Santa Elena; and the trial of Alberto Ical, 29, the main suspect in the murder of Suzenne Martinez, 21. The committee also demanded a reply by Wednesday, October 10. Failing this, there will be a shutdown of all businesses in Santa Elena and San Ignacio, they say.

U-18 National Team returns home
The Belize National U-18 3×3 basketball team returned to Belize this past Wednesday, October 3, after participating in the U-18 3×3 World Championship held in Spain. As the FIBA website put it “Belize turned heads after beating China and Poland and almost beating Canada in group play.” Belize finished with 4 wins and 3 losses, also winning over the Netherlands and Slovakia, and losing to New Zealand, Canada and France. Tree-vanne Moses won gold medal in the Samsung Shootout, winning over a field of almost 80 players. The Belize Basketball Federation would like to thank the sponsors below who made financial contributions as well as other organizations that supported the team and made Belize’s participation possible. Belize is scheduled to participate in the U-16 COCABA Championship to be held in Honduras from October 21-25. Bowen & Bowen (Sprite & Belikin) – Belize Olympic Committee – Belize City Council

None undefeated, and 1 winless at PLB season half-way point
7 weeks have gone, and 7 weeks remain, including 2 more out-of-zone weekends, in the Premier League of Belize (PLB) Opening Season 2012-2013. And, with F.C. Belize suffering their first loss on Saturday, there is no longer any undefeated team in this very tough competition; and only 1 team, San Ignacio United is still without a win. It will be a war down the stretch in the weeks ahead to determine which 2 teams from the North (N) and the South (S) will make it to the 4-team semifinal playoffs. On Saturday night at the Michael Ashcroft Stadium in Independence, (S) Paradise/Freedom Fighters defended home turf with a 3-1 win against (N) San Pedro Seadogs. Shaking the net for the Freedom Fighters were Alexander “Pleck” Peters (41 min), Victor Franco (43 min) and Onest Martinez (87 min); while San Pedro got a late goal from Mario Chimal (90+ min). Also on Saturday, the Isidoro Beaton Stadium in Belmopan saw (S) Police United deliver the first loss to previously undefeated (N) F.C. Belize, who fell 3-0 to the law men, courtesy of goals from Daniel “Danny” Jimenez (14 & 77 min) and Evan Mariano (43 min). After losing their first 2 outings, Police are now sporting a 5-game winning streak.

Casino baggage
In Belize in the post-independence era, we have seen that general election landslides can bring unpleasant policy decisions amid and in the aftermath of the euphoria. After the UDP landslide victory of December 1984, there came passport sales and there came paraquat spraying of our pristine lands and waterways. We would be hyperbolic if we called these unmitigated evils, but, we insist, they were evils. The PUP landslide victory of August 1998 brought us casinos, and the problems Belizeans have had with casinos have hitherto been in the area of personal financial catastrophes, and the problems have been sub-surface. The thing is, students of Caribbean history knew that the American casinos entrenched in the Cuban capital of Havana, American casinos which owned the dictator Fulgencio Bautista lock, stock, and barrel, had been some of the major, hated targets of the Cuban Revolution of 1959. Because we Belizeans like to gamble, and because we like the Las Vegas hype of America, we were not, in principle, hostile to casinos, we didn’t know how insidious they can be in the societal sense, and the extended George Price era had convinced Belizeans that the People’s United Party (PUP) had a moral compass in whose guidance they could be confident. (NOTE: The casino initiative had first penetrated a PUP Cabinet in 1969. There were two prominent Cabinet Ministers who openly supported it. It was the late Madame Gwendolyn Lizarraga and her United Women’s Group who led the opposition to casinos, and Mr. Price sided with her. The Roman Catholic diocese, under the leadership of Bishop Robert L. Hodapp, refused to support the casino initiative. When Bishop Hodapp was shot {he survived} in New Orleans a few months later, there was some speculation that it was because he opposed the casino package.)

From The Publisher
For some weeks now I have been wanting to write a column about Belizeans who have been deported from the United States of America. The first thing I wanted to say was that at Kremandala we have a few deportees employed, and they are some of our best workers. I hesitated in writing such a column, however, because I didn’t want to create the impression that Kremandala is in a position to assist deportees in general. In Belize, we citizens have been traumatized by the Belizeans who are addicted to crack cocaine. We are afraid to greet people or reach out to them in the streets, because if you greet a crack addict, no matter who he/she used to be or what his/her relationship was to you, it will cost you money. There is a frenzy in crack addicts when they are in heat, as it were, and it seems as if they are always in heat. They are in desperate need of money to buy crack, which is the only medicine that can soothe their pain, but only for a little while. Because we are literally frightened by the crack addicts and because sometimes it is difficult to differentiate quickly between an addict and somebody who is just a needy person, we don’t help as many people as we would like to. Thus it is that when deportees began to come on the Belize City scene in significant numbers some ten, fifteen years ago, it was not a warm welcome that they received. And, the deportees felt the chill. They live very much below the radar.

Letters: Toledo Association of Businesses, not BCCI, signed agreement with Guats
I refer to an article written by Aaron Humes and published on page 12 of the Amandala newspaper of Wednesday, October 3, 2012. In the article, Mr. Humes quoted an article in the Guatemalan newspaper, Prensa Libre, which he alleges provided details of “the signing of an agreement between the Chamber of Commerce of Izabal Province and the Belize Chamber of Commerce of Industry (BCCI) that will allow imports of sand, gravel, sausages, meat, fruit and vegetables.” The author of the article further stated that “the signing apparently took place in Punta Gorda and was reportedly witnessed by Minister of Foreign Affairs Wilfred Elrington…” The article continues by stating that BCCI is unaware of the signing of an agreement as stated above. The article also cites the Toledo Association of Businesses as an organization of interest. I write on behalf of the Toledo Association of Businesses, legally registered as a not-for-profit company. On September 2, 2012 The Toledo Association of Businesses signed a Memorandum of Intent with the Chamber of Commerce of Guatemala – Department of Izabal Chapter. This Memorandum of Intent articulates the intention “to pursue a bi-lateral partnership which would seek to enhance collaboration between the two organizations (Chamber of Commerce of Guatemala – Department of Izabal Chapter and the Toledo Association of Businesses) to promote social, cultural and business interests.”

Blogs

International Sources

Belize firm allegedly involved in "spy scandal" in U.S. imported equipment
The Estonian firm OU Yaxart involved in the so-called "spy scandal" in the U.S. is an importer and wholesaler of electrical materials and equipment, the Estonian public television and radio broadcasting corporation ERR reported on its portal on Thursday. OU Yaxart was registered in April 2007 and operates as an importer and wholesaler of electrical materials and equipment, the portal reported. According to ERR, the firm was registered in a residential building in Tallinn in 2007. The firm conducted no business in the first year of its existence and made slightly more than 30,000 Kroon in net profits in the second year. In 2011, revenue reached 649,950 Euros with profit of 160,595 Euros. The firm's only board member, Andrei Shevlyakov, 35, only learned of the firm's involvement in the so-called spy scandal in a conversation with a journalist. "It's a surprise to me," he said. Shevlyakov promised to comment on the situation after becoming familiar with the appropriate documents. OU Yaxart is one of the 165 companies and private individuals which the U.S. authorities believe worked for the Russian special services. According to ERR, among these companies are 119 companies and persons from Russia, 13 from Canada, 11 from Finland, seven from the UK (including six from the British Virgin Islands), five from Germany, two from Hong Kong, two from Sweden, two from Greene, one from Belize, one from Kazakhstan, and one from Estonia.

Tory peer Ashcroft is set to take plunge in English sparkling wine
Tory peer Lord Ashcroft today unveiled plans to become one of the largest producers of English sparkling wine. He wants to buy up 150 acres of prime English vineyards in West Sussex with the aim of producing 400,000 bottles a year. Shellproof, an AIM-listed cash shell company registered in Belize, is merging with a new company Shellproof Plc, which will be registered in the UK. Ashcroft owns 76% of the business, which is currently run by three members of his Belize Bank Holdings. The news came as Nyetimber, one of the most sucessful West Sussex winemakers, announced it will not harvest this year’s crop because of low quality and volumes of grapes after appalling summer weather.

Canada donates ballistic identification system to Belize
Swamped by a rising tide of crime Belize is reaching out for assistance to foreign donors and the government of Canada has come forward with the donation of a Ballistic Identification System to help the local police improve crime fighting capabilities. An official press release issued today by the Ministry of National Security in Belize says: The Government and People of Belize are receiving much-needed assistance from friendly governments and international agencies as we continue to fight against crime and violence in order to restore safety and security throughout our communities. This coming Friday, 12 October 12, inauguration ceremonies will be held for an Integrated Ballistic Identification System donated to Belize by the Canadian Government.

New World Oil and Gas raises stake in Blue Creek project in Belize
New World Oil and Gas (LON:NEW) has been given the go-ahead by regulators in Belize to take a further 10 percent stake in the Blue Creek Project. The assignment was approved by the Belize Ministry of Energy, Science & Technology and Public Utilities following the acquisition of an additional 43 line km of 2D seismic data. It brings the company’s total working interest in the Petén Basin project to 35 percent. Under the terms of a farm-out agreement in June 2011 and amended in February 2012 and May 2012, New World can earn up to a 100 percent working interest in the project by achieving various milestones. These include a three phase 2D seismic acquisition programme totalling 231 line km and an exploration drilling programme. With the seismic programme completed, drilling has just commenced on the B Crest Prospect, which will be drilled to a total depth of 7,000ft into the mid cretaceous Yalbac 2 Formation, with results expected by year-end.

Belize or bust
would be hard not to find the perfect pumpkin for carving up. The First United Methodist Church youth group wants to sell the pumpkins to raise money for a mission trip to Belize in June of next year. The 15 students and adults who plan to go on the mission want to spend a week in Belize help rebuild a high school in disrepair. The fundraiser will help to cover the cost of the trip and raise $3,000 for needed materials for the project. The youth group attempted to do a similar fundraiser in the past except it tried to grow the pumpkins with little success. And with only about 50 small pumpkins to sell, it wasn’t a very lucrative fundraiser. So this year, the young people decided to purchase a large quantity of pumpkins in a variety of sizes and sell them for prices ranging from 50 cents to $40. The fundraiser will run through Halloween, and pumpkins can be purchased Tuesday through Friday from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m., Saturday from 11 a.m. to 7 p.m. and Sunday 10:30 a.m. to 5:30 p.m. in front of the First United Methodist Church at 19 S. Park Ave.



Edited by Marty (11/17/12 03:43 PM)