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#461762 - 04/05/13 02:42 PM Today's Belize News: April 5, 2013
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Specials and Events

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

San Pedro Visitors Greeted by Island Ambassador, Ralph the Pelican
Dear San Pedro Sun, We are supportive of your “Worlds #1 Island” status and thought we would share one of our experiences while on the island. Today Bobby took us on a fishing picnic, while fishing for Barracuda and Snapper the neighborhood pelican, Ralph, dropped in for a visit. Not only are the people friendly but so are the pelicans! Yet another surprise from the great San Pedro. Sincerely, Mara and Martie Spokane, Washington, USA

Oil found in the Orange Walk District
Maranco Energy Limited has discovered an oil deposit in the Orange Walk District. On March 30th crude oil was discovered in the Gallon Jug area and although it is unknown if the quantity of the deposit is commercial, hopes are still high. A press release issued by the Minister of Energy, Science, Technology and Public Utilities,Honorable Joy Grant, stated that “Maranco Energy Belize Limited, on March 30, 2013, discovered an encouraging show at the South Canal Bank #1 exploration well in their concession area in the Orange Walk District.” Testing has commenced in the area to determine the estimated size of the oil field. The tests that are being conducted can take up to two weeks to yield results.

Pancake Breakfast with the Easter Bunny fundraiser a hopping success!
SP Lions Easter Pancake Breakfast 2013-2Last Saturday, March 30th the San Pedro Lions Club held their second annual Pancake Breakfast with the Easter Bunny fund raiser. Starting before the 9am time scheduled to begin, (due to the enthusiastic guests who arrived early), the Lions Den was hopping with hungry and excited children along with their families. Everyone enjoyed a delicious breakfast of pancakes, sausage, sliced oranges and juice. Of course the real treat was the topping table where pancakes could be adorned with syrup, butter, chocolate syrup, jellies, sprinkles, marshmallows or shredded cheese. Some adventurous children opted to sample all of the toppings, leaving little sight of the smothered pancake underneath! The guest of honor was the Easter Bunny, who took time out from his busy schedule to visit with the children and pose for photos. Many children were delighted to see the over-grown rabbit, while some turned shy and maybe even a tad apprehensive at the unusual sight. There were lots of fun activities to enjoy; with coloring pages and crayons set at all the tables, even the grown-ups crafted pretty pictures! Children had fun playing Pin the Tail on the Rabbit and Bobbing for Eggs while others competed in Jump Rope and the always entertaining Egg and Spoon game. Ms Melody and friend Amy decorated the children with colorful face paintings and a new activity, Coco Bunny’s had the children creatively transforming a coconut into a bunny!

Ambergris Today

Texas Tech University High School to Open in San Pedro
Parents are always looking for options for their children and we have a new educational opportunity for the 2013-2014 school year. Multiple parents have been requesting a program that will allow their child to have an education comparable to the United States. Cheryl Bowen, Tina Hayden and Tammy Peterson took on the challenge of finding such a program. As a result, a satelite classroom of TEXAS TECH UNIVERSITY HIGH SCHOOL (TTUHS) will be opening for student attendance in San Pedro on August 23, 2013. Texas Tech University High School (TTUHS) is NOT a Belizean school. It is a non-profit satellite school for the Texas Tech University Independent School District (TTUISD) in Lubbock, Texas, USA. All of the course requirements, books and materials are established by the TTUISD. When a child enrolls, he/she is enrolling in an accredited US high school. He/she is attending a school in the United States, located in the Texas Tech University Independent School District without ever leaving Belize. THAT is the advantage of long distance learning! Students can access an education in the United States ONLINE instead of leaving Belize and traveling to live in the US.

Exercise on the Beach or Outdoors
One of the special treats you get from living in San Pedro is walking/running on the beach! It’s quite a privilege you have that I don’t think many of you take advantage of. Exercising outdoors is associated with feeling more revitalized, more energetic, and less tense, angry or depressed, than indoor activity. Exercise: An easy cardio workout on the beach is to walk 3-5 minutes to warm up your body, then start an easy jog for another 5 minutes. Run easy as long as u can, u won’t die. If you’re up for a challenge (depending on how much you overate or drank…Dorian) you can do several short sprints from one coconut tree to the next. You can walk or jog in between the sprints to give yourself a break; 20-30 seconds sprints is a good start. After you have done about 6 repeats of those sprints, you can continue jogging or walk for a cool down. I guarantee you’ll feel so much better running outside vs. indoors on a treadmill!

Epic Mickey Surprise Appearance during San Pedro Easter Holidays
I have always wanted to go to Disney World, but my wish came true much faster than anticipated. Therefore, my blog is dedicated to San Pedro's very own Epic Mickey and his surprising travels, appearances and memorable facebook pictures that surfaced on the web this past weekend. I was chilling with my friends at a very popular hot spot called The Office, when the conversation came up about the travels of this six foot Mickey Mouse and his appearance at some friend’s porch. His first appearance and feature was on facebook (hilarious right!). I was so excited and on the lookout for Mickey, but to my surprise he was sitting under a coconut tree next to The Office. I came up with the genius idea to continue his travels and take him for a little ride around town and have him make an appearance at Holiday Hotel’s Easter Beach party.

Misc Belizean Sources

Memorial service for Jim Hanna
Service will be at 3pm tomorrow Friday at the Catholic Church & Celebration Of Life at Coco Loco Beach Bar following funeral.

"Feather Fur and Fin" OFFICIAL VIDEO by Danny Michel

Poisonwood: Tree Lovers Beware - Do Not Hug This Tree
My introduction to Poisonwood (Metopium Brownie or Metopium Toxiferum of the familyAnacardiaceae) (Chechem in Maya), was unfortunately through a friend. This unfortunate friend ran afoul of Chechem while visiting an off-grid homestead/fishing camp in a village just outside Corozal Town Belize, Central America where we live. The symptoms where horrific and it took a month for my friend to fully recover. Those familiar with Chechem have a healthy respect for this wickedly toxic tree. My unfortunate friend suffered a head-to-toe painful, itching rash and blisters extending even to bottoms of his feet. Leg-swelling followed by infected lesions, became the result of insistent, irresistible scratching. Barely able to walk, help was sought from local physicians; but none of the salves, creams, pills and more they prescribed prevailed over the poisonous Chechem. We discovered, many painful weeks too late that Nature provides.

New Horizons engineering assistant makes a difference
Two airmen arrive at the construction site of the future Crooked Tree Primary Government School in a three-quarter ton truck, step out and unload a few tools of their trade. Staff Sgt. Joel Bradley, an engineering assistant assigned to the 823rd Red Horse Squadron, carries a tripod over his left shoulder and an auto level in his right hand as he walks toward and surveys the site he will be working at for the next 90 days Bradley, deployed from Hurlburt Field, Fla., is one of approximately 500 airmen who will be participating in a training exercise known as New Horizons. As part of the exercise, Red Horse airmen will be partnering with Belize engineers to build school structures at four different locations in Belize. “This is a great opportunity and makes you feel proud,” said Bradley. “Knowing the schools we are building will provide added opportunities for the children for years to come is what is most rewarding.” Although this son of a U.S. Marine has deployed multiple times before, this is the first deployment in his six-year career as a member of Red Horse. Bradley explained how this training exercise is providing him an opportunity to grow.

New Horizons’ supplies arrive at Belize port
Nineteen containers arrived to the port of Belize April 2 on U.S. Army Vessels Runnymede and Brandy Station. The containers were filled with supplies for New Horizons, a U.S. Southern Command exercise providing medical and dental treatment as well as constructs needed structures, such as classrooms, throughout Belize. New Horizons gives U.S., Canadian and Belizean personnel an opportunity to train jointly in an exercise setting, in order to be prepared to meet future challenges. This is the second shipment received at the port for the exercise. Master Sgt. Wilbert Hall, logistics superintendent assigned to the 823rd RED HORSE Squadron, was responsible for coordinating the offload of the goods, accounting for the items, and arranging transportation to get them to proper locations. “It is an excellent program,” said Hall. “I enjoy helping others. It is great to help other countries and have them see a different part of what we do.”

VIDEO: Tremaine: Keeping from Idle
Belize is a country with a population just over 300,000. it also has the six highest homicide rate in the world. This story is set in one of the toughest neighborhood in Belize city. The Community Disaster Response Teams of Jane Usher Boulevard have formed the "Jane Usher Neighborhood Association (JUNA) which was officially registered in July 2012. JUNA have been actively working to improve their community and have already submitted funding proposals to local organizations. Tremaine is the vice-chairperson of the JUNA association. He was also second runner up for the Belizean Citizenship Award in September 2012, an award for youth to be recognized for outstanding work within their community. Belize Red Cross and Norwegian Red Cross continue to work in partnership to support vulnerable urban communities in Belize.

Sawdust Tapestries in Benque
One more round of pictures of the art from the Sawdust Art Project in Benque. Some great work there.

PACT Awards Over $800,000
The Protected Areass Conservation Trust had their awards ceremony today, and they awarded over $800,000 for small and medium sized projects. In Cayo, the Friends for Conservation and Development was awarded almost $140,000. Thanks, PACT! "On Thursday, April 4, 2013, PACT held a Grant Award Ceremony at the Guanacaste National Park in Belmopan, during which it awarded over $800,000.00 in new project grants! PACT awarded Small and Medium-Sized Grants for projects under the themes of Protected Areas Management and Conservation, Protected Areas Promotion and Development, and Environmental Education and Awareness as follows... Friends for Conservation and Development (FCD) will work to 'Develop GIS Capability to monitor land use change' in the Chiquibul National Park. Through this project, FCD will continue to ensure efficient monitoring and enforcement execution along Chiquibul’s western border. FCD will also socialize and raise the visibility of agriculture incursions issues."

CARICOM Song Competition
It's time to show the Caribbean how amazing Belizean music can sound. How many future 'Andy Palacios' are there in Belize? Many! Caricom is having a 40th anniversary song competition, with huge cash prizes for the winners. $20,000bz for 1st place. NICH has a press release out detailing the rules. Best of luck! "Good morning Everyone. We need your help in letting all musicians know about the CARICOM 40th Anniversary song Competition. The song will be launched at the 34th regular meeting of the conference of Heads of Government of the Caribbean Community to be held in July 2013 in Trinidad and Tobago. First place receives a cash prize of US$10,000 dollars, second US$5000 and third US$2,500. Where are our Cayo Musicians? For more information please contact us at 824-0783 or email us at sisehoc@nichbelize.org"

Cayo's Easter Fair
The SISE Town Council had their annual Easter Fair. Here are some pictures from Easter Sunday.

Direct Assistance Grant Scheme Proposal Writing Workshop

BELIZE’ S NATIONAL EXPORT STRATEGY: VALIDATION WORKSHOP

Channel 7

Police Monitoring Suspect Group of 9 Chinese At Airport
Details are sketchy at this hour, but the arrival of 9 Chinese persons at the Phillip Goldson International has raised many eyebrows this evening - even among law enforcement. The group is still at the airport at this hour - and the GSU has also been dispatched to the airport, presumably to monitor since they are now part of the Special Branch. But, it's not a police matter, it is solely in the hands of the Immigration Department - who still has the nine persons in their aiport office. The group arrived on a TACA flight at about 4:30 this afternoon and their sponsor is reportedly a prominent, well-connected Chinese businessman from Belmopan. He has a number of vehicles at the airport to transport them once they are cleared. There's also a large group of Chinese there at the airport to receive them. It's what you might call a cute situation - as visas for Chinese are notoriously difficult to get legitimately. But, at this point it's too early know if there are shady dealings involved. As we said, the group of nine is still at the airport and we'll keep following it closely.

Oil Minister Speaks About Oil Find
Is there another commercial grade oil field in northern Belize? That's been all the buzz this week - but while everyone's asking the question, really no one's sure right now. Today the Minister with responsibility for Petroleum Joy Grant commented on the oil show. Speaking with the media at a private sector forum in Dangriga she said there is measured optimism: Hon. Joy Grant - Minister of Energy, Science and Technology, and Public Utilities "Well first, we're very excited about what we found over the weekend, which was an encouraging oil show. We continue to do the tests. They're several different phases in exploratory work. They start with the sizing, and then they go to exploratory wells and then to production. So, we are at the point now where we're continuing at the end of phase 1, and hopefully within the next 4 days or so, we will know whether we'll go into the second phase which will then determine unequivocally that this is a commercial find. As you can imagine the ministry, we want to be very sure that when we say anything to the Belizean public that it's based on the facts on the ground. So our staff, they've been there 24 hours since we got the show, and we will report very quickly to the Belizean public as we get more information. But we continue to be encouraged."

Galen Univ Rinses 7 Players, All At Once For Tardiness
Galen University's basketball team, The Eagles won the ATLIB Basketball Championship in February, easily defeating the University of Belize Black Jaguars. And so, the team should have bene riding a high, but tonight 7 players are outraged after they were abruptly and collectively kicked off the team today. And it all; happened because they are accused of arriving late to an event. It wasn't any ordinary event - it was the signing of contracts to grant them athletic scholarships. All ten players were told to appear the University's Belmopan Campus in formal attire with their parents at 11:00 where they would meet President Dr. Louis Zabaneh to sign the athletic scholarship contracts. One player - who asked to remain anonymous - told us that he got there at five minutes to eleven but was told by the security that he was late and the doors were closed. After that six other players and the coach(!) showed up at 11:00 and they too were not allowed to enter. They were then informed that at the instruction of Dr. Louis Zabaneh they had been kicked off the team - which they took to mean that their athletic scholarships were also cancelled.

Targeted For Extradition, El Turk Back In Court
Khaled El Turk, the Lebanese Belizean wanted in the United States for pseudoephedrine trafficking, has made several trips to Magistrate's Court since December 19, 2012. Well today, he was taken back where his attorneys made submission on his behalf to resist his extradition to the US. Attorneys Edwin Flowers and Anthony Sylvester presented the Chief Magistrate Anne Marie Smith with 3 main submissions that they would rely on to convince her to discharge El Turk from the proceedings. The first was that under the extradition treaty with the US, one of the requirements for a person to be extradited is that the offence being allegedly committed has to exist in the laws of both countries. Flowers submitted that the 2 offences that El Turk is charged with, being the importation of pseudoephedrine and conspiracy to the importation of pseudoephedrine, do not exist in the Laws of Belize. The second submission was that the documents, which the US Government has provided for the extradition process, are irregular because of the mandatory requirements was not met.

Four To Be Charged For Murder Of Slain Cop
Belmopan Police still haven't charged anyone for the murder of 36 year old Police Constable Bertchel Ramirez. As we reported, the 36 year old was ambushed and shot multiple times by four men as he sat in his car when he went to visit a friend in the Another World area of Roaring Creek Village. A dozen expended shells were found on the scene and two persons were detained initially. The news tonight is that two more persons were detained late last night, bringing the total to four. An ID parade was conducted today and charges of murder are being prepared for them at this hour. They are expected to be arraigned tomorrow.

Belmopan Cops Killed A Dog Called "Puppy"
And Belmopan police are going especially hard on this case, after all, one of their own was killed. In fact, one Roaring Creek resident says they went so hard that they killed his dog! Erwin Garbutt whose cousins were among persons of interest says police killed his dog - even thought it was on a chain: Erwin Garbutt - Dog Owner "All that I saw was the dog was tied. They opened the next fence at the back; they came in from that back. They came in from everywhere so I didn't see why they had to shoot the dog. It's not a dog that was a violent dog; it was a puppy, a little dog only because the dog is tied. Anybody it doesn't know that comes to the gate, well it will come and see who comes to the gate, and all that I'm saying is that at least they could have just - because the dog tie short from the step, it wasn't going to reach the door even if they went around to the next gate." Monica Bodden "He posed no threat to them?" Erwin Garbutt "Nothing because the gate was still locked, all I would just want is they to show me that respect and give me that courtesy when they come by my place.

Territorial Volunteers Get Some Acknowledgement From OAS
This weekend, the Belize Territorial Volunteers will go back to the Belize/Guatemala border in their efforts to make a clear and definite boundary between both countries. And their efforts will be bolstered a donation to the organization by American Alex Dillett, of jungle clothing and footwear. The members of the BTV are especially excited about it because according to them, the next few areas that they will be work to clear will be more challenging without the proper attire. The donation was handed over to the BTV yesterday, but this isn't the only good news that the organization is getting. As we showed you in our coverage of the first effort at the Jalacte Border, a representative from the Organization of American States was present, but he made himself scarce when the media attempted to approach him. The BTV wrote to the OAS to request their presence as an oversight observer to witness that their effort is meant to be a peaceful one. They have since received a response from the OAS which has pledged that a representative will be present during all their expeditions to the border for the month of April.

Talking Renewable Energy In The South
In February, the Ministry of Energy, Science and Technology and Public Utilities held a private sector forum in Belize City. They're pushing an agenda of renewable energy sources - to get Belize away from a costly fossil fuel dependency. Today, the Ministry took that message south to Dangriga - where they held a similar forum at the Pelican Beach Resort. Today, the buzz word was biomass - they type of energy produced at BELCOGEN from Bagasse, for example. Dr. Kenrick Leslie pointed to regional dependency on fossil fuel and its crippling effects: Dr. Kenrick Leslie - Executive Director, CARICOM Climate Change Center "When we had the spike in the cost of petroleum, some of the countries in the Caribbean had to fork out as much as 50% of their current earnings to purchase fossil fuel. If you have to pay out 50%, nothing is left for development, and therefore it is in our interest to try and change, come with a new approach in terms of using our indigenous renewable energy. Belize, as the minister said, is blessed because we have an abundance of different types of energy. It's a question of how we mix it, and how we access it."

"Police Went Crazy Corrupt At My Crib"
Last night we told u about allegations of police abuse by 2 young men who went to spend Easter in Independence. And now tonight there is another credible allegation of outrageous abuse by police. Carol James, a business woman of Central American Boulevard alleges that corrupt police officers went into her house, found her licensed firearm and then wrongfully detained her fiance. The incident happened on Wednesday night sometime between 9 and 10. James was out of the country when the officer came to her house. Her fiancé was at home and allowed the men inside. He claims that he told the officers about James licensed 9mm firearm that was inside her drawer with all her documents. The officers still proceeded to detain him for the firearm. But that wasn't all. James fiancé alleges that the police officers told him they would release him if he paid them two thousand dollars in cash - which he refused. And so he was locked down for 7 days! Today the family gave us their story: Carol James - Claims Police Corruption "What happen is I got a call from an officer stating that my fiance was locked up and it was best for me to come because they're charging him for my gun that is licensed. So, he said if they're charging him for the gun and the gun is licensed, its best for me to come when he goes to court; I can present my license to the judge. So I flew back to Belize City on Saturday, and I was trying to get in touch with a lawyer but it was a holiday weekend. So, I couldn't get in touch with anybody until Tuesday morning.

Multiple Cops Being Investigated For Misdeeds
Police have also given a long awaited update on multiple complaints of wrongdoing leveled against police officers. First, from the report you heard last night by Adrian Daniels alleging abuse in Independence Town. Police say his statement and that of his friend have been forward to Southern Regional Commander Robert Mariano Noel Leal, Commander of Professional and Standard Branch in Belmopan City. Mariano is in Independence conducting his investigation. And, in another case of hideous abuse, specifically an alleged Rape in Bullet Tree village, police constable # 654 Eldrid Clinton Thomas has been charged with two counts of Act to the Prejudice of Good Order and Discipline and one count of Drinking Intoxicating Liquor while on duty. The alleged victim in that case withdrew her complaint.

PROFILE: Diangelo Ramos
Diangelo Ramos is the subject of tonight's I am Belize Profile. He's not famous, and has no great, news-making accomplishment - but, sometimes, just surviving requires a certain heroism and courage. That's what he showed when he was thrown out of his house when he was just in Standard Six. But with the kindness of a neighbor, he tells us how he bounced back:

"Ray Cat" Does Not Mince Words In Pummeling Cycling Critics
The 85th Cross Country Cycling Classic - was surely one of the more memorable cross country races we've seen in years. That's because a whole pack of riders rode into the city - and the field was wide open for anyone to seize the victory. Darnell Barrow did so in a decisive sprint - and in so doing, wrote his name into history for the fastest winning ride ever by a Belizean. One of the race favourites Brandon Cattouse was lost in the mix; he came in 11th, despite having one of the strongest pair of foreign riders on his team to carry him to the line. That includes Luis Pullido Naranjo - one of the powerful Mexican's who set the high paced temp of the race. But, it was not to be - and last night on Lik Road, owner of the C0-Ray team and Brandon's father, Ray Cattouse named names when he assessed blame: Ray Cattouse - Owner, C-Ray Cycling Team "I have a lot to say; a lot of people won't like to hear what I have to say but I have a lot to say. Not to try put the blame on nobody, we lost the Cross Country, Brandon rode a hell of a good race but."

PACT Cares With Cash
Protecting Belize's vast Natural Resources is a daunting task. All the different advocacy organizations around the country make the best effort that they can, but their initiatives are often handicapped by a lack of funding. Well today, the Protected Areas Conservation Trust held a small ceremony in which they announced that they will be providing $800,000 in funding to 6 different organizations based on their proposals which they submitted prior to the selection process. Here's what the Acting Director told the gathering: Natalie Rosado - Acting Executive Director, PACT "We are elated today to award $808,671.18 in 6 grants. One small and 5 medium size grants; these grants will be awarded to the Toledo Institute for the Development and Environment, Friends for Conservation and Development, Program for Belize, the Southern Environmental Association, Ya'axche Conservation Trust and the Belize Cooperative - Fisherman Cooperative Association."

Channel 5

Late arrival of Chinese nationals at the PGIA; another visa scandal?
This afternoon a number of Chinese nationals arrived on a commercial flight at the Philip Goldson airport.  The group of about eight alighted a TACA flight late this evening. Their arrival raised suspicions and their travel documents were being thoroughly scrutinized by immigration officials at the PGIA due to a well known and well established [...]

Government ecstatic about promising oil find in Orange Walk
The government is being cautious, but optimistic about what could likely be a promising oil find. The Geology and Petroleum Department, along with officials from Maranco Energy Belize Limited, are currently working around the clock assessing an oil find in the Orange Walk District to determine whether the recent discovery is of commercial quantity.  On [...]

Minister says conditions of Maranco oil agreement favorable to Belize
While the PSA was granted by the government in March 2011, details of its terms are not known.  As required by the contract, Maranco has tendered a proposal to government to hand over twenty-five percent of its current acreage.  According to Minister Grant, the conditions of the agreement are favorable to Belize.   Isani Cayetano [...]

5 Eagles’ athletes lose their spot on team for being five minutes late
They soared on wings of eagles but time brought them crashing down to earth – five minutes of time, that is. Word spread quickly today that seven of ten members of the 2013 ATLIB champion Galen Eagles basketball team lost their academic scholarships because they were five minutes late to a meeting set up at [...]

…But will not lose their scholarships
Dr. Zabaneh reiterated that the students would still be given the opportunity to obtain their degrees, though he did say that the terms of the scholarship would change to include a greater obligation on the part of the students. Zabaneh stands by the action and by the importance of the message, and in fact says [...]

4 men to be charged in connection with murder of cop in Roaring Creek
Four men have been in police detention since Tuesday and are expected to be charged this Friday for the murder of thirty-six year old police constable Bertchel Ramirez. The men are said to be from Roaring Creek Village where the heinous murder happened on Tuesday night. Ramirez was visiting his girlfriend in the Another World [...]

Discharged from the force, Javier Castellanos bares his soul
For twenty-three years, Javier Castellanos served on the Belize Defense Force. His dream was to eventually steer the force as Commandant, but just before that was to take place, his career with the B.D.F. ended abruptly. Castellanos was discharged, his reinstatement was ordered and about to be challenged by the government when they decided to [...]

O.A.S. to observe the latest ‘clearing the border’ project
When we spoke with Wil Maheia of the Belize Territorial Volunteers on Wednesday, he told us that he had received no response from the Organization of American States or from the B.D.F. to a formal request made for observers this weekend as they work to clear the border. Minister of Foreign Affairs Wilfred Elrington has [...]

43rd annual B.N.T.U. Convention
The forty-third annual convention of the Belize National Teachers Union concluded today in the capital where in late January, by the thousands teachers showed their muscle in respect of a long overdue salary adjustment. The two-day event was held under the theme, “B.N.T.U., Overcoming Challenges, Embracing Opportunities in Education” and over two hundred teachers from [...]

Unions to meet with Prime Minister on Friday; is the Collective Bargaining Agreement on the agenda?
The Teachers’ Convention also discussed the hot-button issue, the collective bargaining agreement it is negotiating with the government.  This Friday, the Joint Negotiating Team consisting of representatives from B.N.T.U., the Association of Public Service Senior Managers and the National Trade Union Belize Congress of Belize will meet with Prime Minister Dean Barrow. Tensions have been [...]

Land bonanza: the latest land scandal of the Ministry of Natural Resources
The Ministry of Natural Resources has been in the spotlight quite a bit about questionable land transactions. Usually, it is about some prime piece of property given to some family member or relation or political affiliate or friend as was the recent case of four prime pieces of land in the Placencia Peninsula. The defense [...]

Will Khalid El Turk be extradited to the U.S.?
Lebanese businessman Khalid El Turk appeared once again before Chief Magistrate Anne Marie Smith this morning. His trial is to determine whether or not El Turk is to be extradited to the United States where he faces charges relating to pseudoephedrine, which is a controlled drug in the U.S.  El Turk is accused of conspiring [...]

Police investigate allegations of terrorism by Independence officers
The Police High Command is reacting swiftly to a report we aired in Wednesday’s newscast. It was an appalling story of what was not so much Police brutality but Police terrorism, and against a minor, a student from Belize City. Nineteen year old Adrian Daniels and a minor were picked up in Independence Saturday afternoon, [...]

PACT Grants: over $800,000 provided to 6 NGOs
Each year the Protected Areas Conservation Trust, PACT, awards project grants to organizations to support the conservation and promotion of environmentally sound management of Belize’s natural and cultural resources. While the organizations who receive that much coveted funding assistance may change from year to year, the goal they work toward remains the same. This year [...]

Stakeholders meet to discuss ways to reduce dependency on imported energy
While the government is hopeful that a recent oil find will boost government revenue, renewable energy remains top on its agenda. This morning, stakeholders in the industry gathered in Dangriga to discuss how alternative energy sources can translate into less dependency on imported energy. News Five’s Isani Cayetano reports.   Isani Cayetano, Reporting Renewable energy, [...]

Healthy Living tackles the sniffles of allergies
What do pets, flowers and mold have in common? If the first things that come to mind are an itchy, runny nose, sneezing, watery eyes and congestion, then that means that you are one of millions of persons worldwide that suffer from nasal allergies. If you or your loved ones suffer from allergies, then tonight’s [...]

LOVE FM

Four Men Arrested for Policeman's Murder
Four men are expected to be charged with the murder of 36-year-old Police Officer Bertchell Ramirez. The four were reportedly taken to San Ignacio for an identification parade after which they were brought back to Belmopan. They are expected to appear in court on Friday mor...

Customs Officer Becomes Latest Victim of Burglary
Corozal Police investigate the burglary of the home of customs officer Victor Tillett of the Halls Layout Area in Corozal. Tillett’s house was broken into over the weekend. According to the 39 year old man, sometime between nine am on March 28 and 4pm April second, his house was ...

Plans Finalized For The Formation of Belize Association of Planners
Local and international planners converged in Belmopan today to finalize plans of forming the Belize Association of planners, the fourth of its kind to be formed in the Caribbean. Today the final signing of documents to register the new association which according to one of its f...

Micro Entrepreneurs Struggle As Sales Dwindle In The Tourism Zone
Tourism has proven to be one of the greatest income earners for Belize over the years. Today reporter Marion Ali and cameraman Myles Gillett tried to get a pulse of the people on the ground who depend on cruise tourism to make ends meet. MARION ALI " The 2...

Wednesday, April 3 --------- Police Murder Under Investigation
A police officer was shot and killed last night. Reporter Marion Ali has the story. MARION ALI Police Constable 380, Bertrell Ramirez, a 36-year-old father of three who was assigned to the Belmopan Police Station for the past six years was murdered on Tuesday night; shot...

Youths Claim Police Brutality
Two Belize City youths are claiming they were the victims of police brutality over the Easter weekend. The two young men, eighteen year old Adrian Daniels, along with a friend, a sixteen year old minor told Love News they went to Independence Village for the Easter weekend. Daniels sai...

PG Mayor Announces Opening of Internet Cafe For Students Through Donation From Belizean Living Abroad
A number of computers have been donated to the Punta Gorda Town Council. Correspondent Paul Mahung has the details. PAUL MAHUNG " The donation is timely as the computer are a necessity and will be put into helpful use for students and children who need access to such servi...

Consultation Meeting Looks At The Way Forward In Sports for Belize
A one day consultation between the Caribbean Sport Development Agency and the National Sports Council is underway in Belize City. Chairman of the National Sports Council of Belize, Allan Sharp says that among many things the consultation is geared to discuss the way forward in th...

Youth Program Coordinator Returns From Training on Intervention and Crime Prevention
The National Youth Program Coordinator for the Community Policing Unit of the Police Department Douglas Hyde is back in the country after having travelled to the United States and El Salvador for a two week training which looked closely at intervention and prevention of crime and viole...


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#461763 - 04/05/13 02:43 PM Re: Today's Belize News: April 5, 2013 [Re: Marty]
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CTV3

BR's Pharmacy Robbed At Gunpoint
A pharmacist from Orange Walk Town, his employee and one of his clients are tonight recuperating from a frightful ordeal after two men robbed B.R’s Pharmacy located on Belize Corozal Road, at gunpoint. The incident played out on Holy Thursday at around 8:00pm. According to proprietor of B.R’s Pharmacy Alejandro Lopez, he was at the back of the establishment packing some medications and upon his return to the front area, he was met face to face with one of the two robbers who was armed with a firearm. Alejandro Lopez- Proprietor B.R’s Pharmacy “I was at the back packing medications that had reached. I had told my customer to wait so that I can check his blood pressure one more time so while in the process of that, I saw my worker that was frightened. She had a frighten face. That is when I got kind of surprise. While I was coming from the front from behind the curtain I saw that this Creole descent guy had a gun in his hand and was pointing it towards me. He told me, “give me you money.” But then I also realized that the customer was already on the floor and the guy, a tall slim, East Indian looking guy, had a knife at the neck of my customer. By that time, apparently the customer told me afterwards that they took away his phone. So I proceed to go to the back of the curtain where the cash pan is by this guy following me and pointing the gun at me. Then he asked him to give him the money. I took the money and gave him the money. He asked if it was all I had and I told his yes. He asked me to give him my phone. I told him that I don’t have a phone but my phone was on the table.”

Veronica Gonzalez Died Of Exsanquinations
In other news, the post mortem conducted on the body of 39 year old Veronica Gonzalez who died minutes after she was stabbed multiple times while in the Village of Sarteneja in the Corozal District on April 31st, shows that she died as a result of exsanguinations due to internal and external bleeding as a consequence of multiple wounds. Thirty nine year old Norma Pena has been charged for Gonzalez’s murder.

Angel Carrillo And Four Students Fined For Illegal Hunting
The month of March proved to be one of scandal for the Belize High School of Agriculture after four of its male students and one of its male teachers were accused of brutally attacking a Howler Monkey on March 5th. The male monkey died three days after while receiving treatment at Wild Tracks Centre, a Monkey Rehabilitation Facility in Sarteneja Village. News tonight is that the case against the four students, two of which are said to be minors and Teacher Angel Carillo, began yesterday at the Orange Walk Magistrates Court. All five individuals were charged for illegal hunting by the Forest Department and now face a legal battle. CTV3 News understands that all five accused were awarded bail to the sum of $1,000 each plus one surety each of the same amount which they met. Their case was adjourned for June 26th 2013. As previously mentioned, the monkey’s brutal attack was cause for controversy both here at home and abroad.

Police Officers Recognized For Their Hardwork
The swearing in of 15 new Special Constables was not the only cause for celebration at the Orange Walk Police Department this afternoon. During the special ceremony, two officers of the department were recognized as Officer of the Month for the Months of February and March respectively. P.C Reynald Cacho joined the police force one month shy from his 19th birthday in the year 1985 and has been posted at stations across the country. Four years ago he was transferred to the Orange Walk Police Formation and has been a role model for his colleagues who elected him as Officer of the Month for the Month of February. P.C Reynaldo Cacho- Officer of the month for March “I feel great. This is my second award being here in Orange Walk under two different OCs, Mr. Mariano first and them Mr. Myvette.” Carmelita Perez, Reporter “To what would you say that you owe these two great achievements in your police career?” P.C Reynaldo Cacho- Officer of the month for March “Well I have been tasking for so long and at times I have been left out but then this time around I have been recognized because I take my work very seriously. I don’t play or drink at work.” Carmelita Perez, Reporter “What made you join the police task force?” P.C Reynaldo Cacho- Officer of the month for March “Well, seeing that I was- like was said in the biography- I decided to remain because I noticed that only this department can pay when you are resting night and day so that is one of the reason why.”

Corozal Police Conducts Anti Drug Operation
The Corozal Police Department carried out an anti drug operation last night which proved fruitful. The operation was carried out at a residence located on 3rd Street North in the Skeleton Area in Corozal Town which led to the discovery of a crazy glue case containing 2.7 grams of suspected crack cocaine. The suspected drug was found in one of the bedrooms. Present at the time of the search were 42 year old Charles Anthony Whitfield and 49 year old Gilbert Alexander Jones Sr. Both Whitfield and Jones were taken to the police station and charged for drug trafficking.

PlusTV

Students from Galen University kicked off the basketball team
Tonight we intended to bring you the story of some ten students from the University of Galen, who were to sign contracts renewing their athletic scholarships with the Galen Eagles Basketball team, but when our news team arrived at the Satellite Campus in Belmopan, there was a major shift...

Planning professionals meet to register Belize Association of Planners
Members of the planning profession in Belize merged efforts and knowledge today in signing on to the Articles and Memorandum of Association for the Belize Association of Planners (BAP), and registering it as a Non-Governmental Organization making Belize the fourth Caribbean country after Barbados, Jamaica and Trinidad to have...

Oasis Ministry builds its 69th home for a family of ten
Pastor Ron Braaten along with his wife Linda, are the Board Directors for Oasis Ministry. The organization which is located in Unitedville, has been in Belize for the past fourteen years. Nine years ago, it started building homes for families in need across the country of Belize and yesterday,...

Female football team gets assistance from DFC
Gentle Touch is a female football team that was birthed in Esperanza village in the Cayo District. The team started small, comprising only of family members from the Gentle clan, but has since grown significantly and has earned recognition as a reputable team in the Belize football club. And...

COLA comments on murder of Police Constable in Roaring Creek
Citizens Organized for Liberty through Action (COLA) has commented on this week’s incidents including the death of a police constable in Roaring Creek Village and alleged brutality inflicted by security forces on several young men from Belize City and Independence village over the Easter weekend. Stating that “The Department...

Police charge Norma Pena for murder of Veronica Gonzalez
Earlier this week, we told you about the stabbing murder of a woman in Sarteneja Village. 29 year Wendy Aragon was along with her sister, 39 year old Veronica Gonzalez, in the village, where they had planned to spend the Easter holiday. On Saturday, the women decided to go...

PACT holds Grant Award Ceremony
Today, PACT held a Grant Award Ceremony, where they awarded over $800,000.00 in new project grants. The grants went to projects under the themes of Protected Areas Management and Conservation, Protected Areas Promotion and Development, and Environmental Education and Awareness. PACT shared Small and Medium-Sized Grants among Belize Fishermen...

Whirlwind caused damage at weekend fair
A whirlwind caused quite some wreckage after it blew through an Easter Fair this weekend. Celebrators were attending an Easter Fair this past Sunday in Cayo, when just before noon, an early wind came spinning into the area, taking down a few posts, tents and stalls. And while no...

Armed thieves stole from pharmacy in Orange Walk Town
The last thing you’d expect when making a quick trip to the store, is to be caught in the middle of a hold up. But that’s exactly what happened on Easter Sunday, when thieves stormed into a pharmacy in Orange Walk Town. The owner of the establishment told Police...

The Guardian

MORE OIL! Maranco strikes Oil in Orange Walk
Testing is currently being conducted on an oil well dug in Gallon Jug to determine if it has potential to produce oil commercially. The Ministry of Energy, Science & Technology and the PUC issued a release which states that on March 30th, Maranco Energy Belize Limited “discovered an encouraging oil show at the South Canal Bank #1 exploration well in their concession area in the Orange Walk District.” The Well is located in the Gallon Jug area in property belonging to a company called Laguna Seca. According to the release, there needs to be testing done to determine whether or not the well has commercial potential. Personnel from the Geology and Petroleum Department have been on the site to monitor the situation. According to the Chief Executive Officer in the Ministry of Energy, Dr. Colin Young, the company has up to 18 months to do their appraisal on the well to determine its commercial viability. Maranco received its Production Sharing Agreement on May 3rd, 2011 on a 378,000-acre swath of private land in the Gallon Jug area of the Orange Walk District. Drilling at the South Canal Bank started on March 8th.

Darnell Barrow captures 85th Cross Country Cycling Classic
The Belize Cycling Association sponsored its 85th Annual Holy Saturday Cross Country Cycling Classic on Saturday March 30th, 2013. The historic and traditional ride started from in front of Leslies’ Imports on the George Price Highway at 6:00 am and then travelled the entire length of the highway to Columbus Park in San Ignacio Town where the cyclists turned and then headed back to Belize City for the conclusion on the Newtown Barracks in front of Hour Bar. The 139.6-mile event attracted 87 riders which included 6 from the USA, 10 Mexicans and 2 Guatemalans. At the end of the race, some 44 riders did not finish the course, while 41 riders cross the finish line. The record of 5:40:12 which was set by Ryan Baumann in 2009 was not broken, but this year’s race was the fastest ever rode by any cyclists that have participated in the Annual Holy Saturday Cross Country Cycling Classic. In the last leg of the 139.6-mile race, some 15 riders which included Darnell Barrow of Team Santino’s Belize were heading for the finish line on the Princess Margaret Drive. In a dramatic to sprint to the finish line, Belizean Darnell Barrow was able to outsprint two foreigners to capture the 85th Annual Holy Saturday Cross Country Cycling Classic in a time of 5:46:49.

Police Constable executed in Roaring Creek
Police are investigating the murder of one of their own. The lifeless body of 36-year-old Police Constable Bertchel Ramirez was found in his blue Toyota Camry in Roaring Creek on Tuesday, April 2nd. Police reported that at about 11:20 p.m. on Tuesday night, they responded to reports of gunshots in the Another World Area of Roaring Creek Village. Upon arrival, they saw the lifeless body of Constable Ramirez in the driver’s seat of his car slouched over to the right side. An apparent gunshot wound was observed on his shoulder as well as one to the head. Ramirez was transported to the Western Regional Hospital where he was pronounced dead on arrival. No arrest has been announced as yet and police investigation into this murder continues.

Incentivising Solutions
Teenagers are notoriously vulnerable to negative influences that can take them on a detour from which it is difficult or impossible to return. The positive road is often the one that seems more difficult and longer even though its ultimate destination is more pleasant than the easier looking detour that leads quickly to nowhere or worse. Parents, schools and Governments are continuously trying to find ways to help young people avoid these negative influences that are now so ubiquitous. There are numerous solutions on offer from a variety of sources but sometimes our parents, schools and Governments, like the young people they are trying to assist, are lost when choosing solutions. Too often they look to the easier solutions that promise instant rewards rather than the more difficult and longer paths that get better results. In general, it is wise to be wary of any solution in this area that requires a payment of some sort, whether it is in fees to join an organisation, special materials or special speakers. Testimonials, either formal or informal, from a neutral source are an extremely important guide when evaluating different solutions. Let us review some of the not-for-profit programmes that consistently claim success to some degree to see what, if anything, they have in common.

Digicell 4G Opens Up New Avenues
Deputy Prime Minister Gaspar Vega says 4G Network will allow farmers and food producers to remain competitive and to bring down costs. With Digicell’s 4G cell sites having been activated between Belmopan to the Benque Viejo Border early last month, a similar pattern of activity is now taking place between Belmopan and Punta Gorda. Five more cell sites are now being readied for full operation between these two areas and when this takes place by mid-April of this year, it will mark a full Digicell 4G Coverage for Belize.

US Court dismisses Glenn Godfrey’s Case Against Government of Belize
The United States District Court for the Southern District of Florida has dismissed a case brought by GDG Acquisitions LLC, a company belonging to Glenn D. Godfrey, against the Government of Belize for alleged breach of a Master Lease Agreement, purported to have been signed between a Belizean company, International Telecommunications Limited (“INTELCO”), and the then Minister of Budget Management, in 2002.

Macobi for Mark
Hon. Michael Finnegan was dead on when he told the National Assembly in Belmopan that the PUP has “Macobi” for Mark Espat. It would seem that the People’s United Party really has it bad for Mark Espat. At every public event and even in the dark corners where they lurk, they lament, complain and bemoan that Mark Espat is no longer a member of the PUP. It burns them to the core to know that if Espat had not removed himself from those low-down rotten individuals in the PUP, he could have made a difference in the last general elections for them. It is even quite likely that they would have formed the next government.

Belize gets $10.6 Million for Poverty Reduction
Various officials from the Caribbean Development Bank will be in Belize on Thursday, April 11th, for the launch of the Basic Needs Trust Fund (BNTF7) programme. The Basic Needs Trust Fund is a program promoting poverty reduction through socio-economic initiatives and community empowerment. Its mission is “to be a community development programme that supports health, education, water and sanitation, access and economic activities through skills training, organizational development and infrastructure and services”.

No Verification of Prensa Libre’s Passport Article
Ambassador Alexis Rosado, Chief Executive Officer in the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, said, “We would consider it very offensive if it is true that the Guatemalan Government intends to print such a map on its passport.” Rosado was sharing his reaction to an article in the Prensa Libre newspaper in which it said that Guatemala’s Ministry of the Interior is putting the contract for the printing of over four million passports in the next ten years up for tendering. The report says that the passports will include a map of Central America which illustrates that there is a territorial dispute with Belize. That will be illustrated by using a dotted line for the Belize-Guatemala border. News of the report has upset Belizeans both at home and abroad.

BTL launches its 2013 Telephone Directory
The Belize Telemedia Limited (BTL) launched its 2013 Telephone Directory on March 27th, 2013 at the main market in San Ignacio Town. It was a fitting launch at the San Ignacio locality: for a photograph was taken there recently to eventually be shown on this year’s directory cover page.

UN Calls for Accelerated Action with 1,000 Days to Go on Millennium Development Goals
People around the world invited to join in boosting momentum for most successful global anti-poverty push in history

Violent Crime in our Neighborhood: What Matters to Central Americans Should Matter to Us
The United States has seen a dramatic decrease in violent crime over the last two decades. In 1994, more than half of all citizens reported violent crime as a major concern. Today, according to Gallup, only two percent consider it a serious problem. Sadly, in Central America – a region vital to our security and prosperity – violent crime is a pervasive concern. The region’s homicide rates are among the highest in the world, and other violent incidents are tragically commonplace. Crime routinely goes unreported or unsolved, and it impedes economic growth.

Two Men charged with Attempted Murder of Police Officers
30-year-old Dane Enriquez and 23-year-old Alexander Underwood are behind bars after they were charged for the attempted murder of Police Constable Raphael Abraham and Special Constable Juan Morales. According to a police report, PC Abraham and SC Morales were on motorcycle patrol in the Belama area on Saturday, March 29th, when at about 7 p.m., they saw a grey four-door Ford Ranger pickup truck parked in front of a church on Thomas Vincent Ramos Street in Belama Phase 4. The officers approached the vehicle and it drove off turning into Apollo Street. According to police, When Abraham and Morales rode ahead and attempted to stop the truck, the driver tried to knock down Morales who swerved off the road into the bushes. The truck then sped off but was followed by Abraham. Morales later joined the chase. After reaching a dead end in the Belama Phase 4 area, the truck came to a stop and someone from inside fired three shots at Abraham. He took cover, leaving his motorcycle on the side of the street. At this time, the Ford Ranger drove into Abraham’s motorcycle which got lodged under the front of the truck.

Tour guide charged for Operating without a Proper License
Shane Baizar, 29, a tour guide appeared in Magistrate’s court on Wednesday, April 3rd where he was charged for operating as a tour guide without first obtaining a license. Allegations are that on March 25th, 2013, whilst in the Village of Bermudian Landing, Baizar operated as a Tour guide without first obtaining a license. Baizar, who pleaded not guilty, asked the court to give an explanation in the matter. He told Magistrate Adolph Lucas that he was wrongly charged because of complaints by his competitors in the business. He said that in 2006, he was charged with the same offence but it was later withdrawn. That’s because he said that the charge was only placed against him as a malicious act by a competitor who feels threaten by him in the business. He said that his tours come to him from private people because he has a site and that he has a license to be a tour guide and that the charge only arose out of something seen on a website that does not even belong to him.

Police Officer from Cayo in Critical Condition
A Police Constable attached to the San Ignacio Police Formation is in critical condition at this time at the Karl Heusner Memorial Hospital in Belize City. The family members of P.C. Angel Tun are at his side at this time. Officer Tun was driving along the main street in Spanish Lookout, going towards Universal Hardware sometime between 3:30 and 4:00 pm on Tuesday April 2nd when the accident occurred. Tun was on his way to purchase parts for a motorcycle when a blue Ford Truck suddenly pulled out of a yard and he then collided into that vehicle. Police say that they are giving as much support as possible to Angel Tun at this critical hour. “We try to give as much support as we can, there is only so much we can do,” says a ranking Police Officer.

Delvith Retreage busted with Unlicensed 9 mm
34-year-old car dealer, Delvith Retreage appeared before Chief Magistrate Anne Marie Smith on Tuesday, April 2nd, to answer to charges of keeping unlicensed firearm and ammunition. According to police, officers responded to reports of a fight taking place at Celina’s Cool Spot in Ladyville Village at about 10:50 p.m. on Monday, April 1st. Upon arrival, they saw a man ran away and threw an object to the ground. The officers chased and apprehended the individual then took him back to the area where the object was thrown. They retrieved a 9 mm pistol containing a magazine with seven live rounds of ammunition. The man was identified as Delvith Retreage of Ladyville Village. In court, Retreage pleaded not guilty to the charges. Due to the fact that it was a firearm charge, bail was denied. Retreage will be remanded at the Belize Central Prison until his next court appearance on May 29th.

Michael Heusner gunned down on Mahogany Street
Police are investigating the murder of 28-year-old Michael Anthony Heusner of Courtenay’s Crescent in Belize City. Heusner was gunned down at about 7:30 p.m. on Monday, April 1st, as he was walking on Mahogany Street. According to a police report, Heusner was walking on Mahogany Street from the direction of Mopan Street and heading towards Sarstoon Street when two males on separate bicycles rode up from behind. One of them pulled out a firearm and fired several shots at him. Heusner was struck by bullets multiple times to the head and body. He died on the scene. Six 40 caliber S&W expended shells were recovered from the scene. Police have not announced any arrest as yet.

Wallace Donald Matura succumbs to Gunshot Injuries
48-year-old Wallace Donald Matura was shot multiple times while standing at the corner of Orange Street and East Canal on Friday, February 15th. Matura’s shooting was not gang related and not the typical case of an individual’s bad deeds coming back to haunt him. Instead, this was the case of a man standing up for something noble. Matura witnessed an adult male advancing upon and disrespecting a female child. He later said, “I knew the child and her family and could not stand by idly.” Matura intervened and demanded that the man leave the girl alone. The embarrassed man went away and returned with another man. They then opened fire in Matura’s direction. He was shot a total of 8 times, receiving gunshot wounds to his abdomen, left hand, right hand and left leg. 26-year-old Carmita Chan and 32-year-old Alchea Harris also received gunshot injuries as they walked on Orange Street. Chan was shot in the left side of her buttocks and Harris was grazed on his left hip. All three individuals were transported to the Karl Heusner Memorial Hospital for treatment. Chan and Harris were released shortly after. Matura underwent emergency surgery and seemed poised for a full recovery. After surgery, he issued a public statement thanking Doctors Jose Moguel and Leah Rosado as well as the nurses for their tireless effort to save his life.

Twin Fishermen charged for Fishing without License
On Wednesday, April 3rd a pair of twins appeared in court after they were allegedly caught illegally fishing in the Robinson Caye area. The twins are identified as 31-year-olds Darwin Retreage, and Dwight Retreage both of #16 Queen Charlotte Street in Belize City. They appeared in Magistrate’s Court where they were charged with the offense of engaging in commercial fishing while not being holders of a valid Fisherman’s license. On Wednesday, April 3rd, they were caught in the Robinson Caye area engaging in Commercial Fishing and they did not have a valid fisherman’s license. They were additionally charged with possession of 19 undersized market clean conch. Darwin was also charged with one count of using a T-C vessel without a valid commercial boat license. Dwight was also charged alone with engaging in Commercial Fishing without being a holder of a valid Fisherman’s license. For the offenses Darwin was charged with, he pleaded guilty to all, and as a result, Magistrate Adolph Lucas fined him $400 for engaging in commercial fishing without a license. He has until May 24th, to pay the fine or in default 6 months. For using a vessel without a license he was fined another $400 which he was ordered to pay by July 5th, or in default 6 months. For possession of the conch, he was fined $300 to be paid by June 28th, or in default 6 months imprisonment.

Woman kills Another in Sarteneja
Two women were transported to the Corozal Community Hospital from Sarteneja Village on April 1st after they were stabbed by another woman. Police report that at about 12:01 on Monday morning, they were called out to a dance in Sarteneja village where they found 39-year-old Veronica Gonzalez of a Kings Park address in Belize City, suffering from stab wounds. Also found suffering from stab wounds was 29-year-old Wendy Aragon of an Antelope Street Extension address in Belize City. The women reportedly were involved in an altercation during which another woman, identified as 39-year-old Norma Pena of a Moho Street address in Orange Walk Town allegedly inflicted the stab wounds to both women. Gonzalez died while she was being transported to the Northern Regional Hospital in Orange Walk town at around 3:05 on Monday Morning while Aragon had to be admitted for treatment. Police have arrested and charged Pena with murder and attempted murder.

Sports Consultation underway with National Federations
The Hon. Herman Longsworth, Minister of State with direct responsibilities for Youth and Sports officially declared the 1st public Sports Consultation open this morning at the River Hall Room of the Belize Biltmore Plaza Hotel. The public consultation with the national federations (15) showed up this morning which included Mr. Hilly Martinez, President of the Belize Olympic and Commonwealth Games is being chaired by Mark Mungal and Andre Collins the consultants from Caribbean Sport and Development Agency. The National Federations which are participating in the consultation process are Belize Volleyball Association, Belize Cycling Association, Belize Softball Federation, Belize Olympic and Commonwealth Games Association, Belize Table Tennis Association, Belize Boxing Federation, Belize Shooting Federation, Belize Sailing Federation, National Secondary Schools Sports Association, Belize Karate Association, Football Federation of Belize, Belize Bodybuilding Federation, Belize Triathlon Association, Belize Billards Association and members of the Board of Directors of the National Sports Council of Belize. The participants in today’s consultation are actually involved with practical applications that will help to form the Sports Policy and Strategic Plan for the period 2014-2017. The consultation will at its end of today’s activities will come up with the frame work for the Sports Policy and Strategic Plan.

Belmopan Bandits regain Lead in Premier League
The Closing Season of the Premier League of Belize Competition continued over the last week of play. On Saturday March 30th, 2013, at the MCC Grounds, FC Belize blanked Police United by the score of 2-0. The goals for FC Belize were scored by Leon Jones in the 20th minute of play and the second goal was scored by Michael Hernandez in the 75th minute of play. At the Placencia Football Field in Placencia, the visiting Belize Defence Force and the home team Placencia Assassins played to a 1-1 draw. The goal for the Belize Defence Force was scored by Byrone Usher in the 26th minute of play while the goal for the Placencia Assassins was scored by Dellon Torres in the 90th plus minutes of the game. The competition then continued on Sunday, March 31st with two more games. At the Norman Broaster Stadium in San Ignacio Town, San Ignacio United FC edged Verdes FC by the score of 3-2. The San Ignacio United FC was the first to get onto the scoreboard when Seannon Defaur in the 26th minutes of play. The lead was further increased when Leonard Valdez scored the 2nd goal of the game in the 39th minute of play and the winning goal was scored by Garrel Bermudez in the 60th minute of play. The goals for Verdes FC were scored by Nahjib Guerra in the 47th minute of play and then the second goal was scored by Emanuel Martinez in the 78th minute of play.

Guardian Sports Council leads in Inter-office Softball Competition
The 2012 Belize City Interoffice Softball Competition will be winding down this weekend at Rogers Stadium with the Semi-finals, Final and Grand Final of the Page System Playoffs. On Wednesday, March 27th, in the first of two games played, Guardian/Sports Council defeated Belize Bank by the score of 18-14. The Guardian/Sports Council scored 6 runs in the 1st inning, 1 in the 2nd inning, 5 in the 4th inning, 5 in the 6th inning and 1 in the 7th inning. Guardian/Sports Council scored 18 runs on 25 hits. The winning pitcher was Joel Wade and the losing pitcher was Gosden Ferguson. In the second game played, BWSL edged BTL by the score of 9-8. BWSL scored 1 run in the 1st inning, 1 in the 2nd inning, 2 in the 3rd inning, 3 in the 4th inning, 2 in the 6th inning. Meanwhile, BTL scored a run in the 1st inning, 3 in the 4th inning, 1 in the 5th inning, and 3 in the 7th inning. The winning pitcher was Shera Pandy and the losing pitcher was Bernard Pitts.

Tackle Box Buckles
San Pedro is the top Easter weekend destination in Belize. The island comes alive at night as bars and clubs offers partiholics the opportunity to party until the sun rises. One of the most popular establishments is the Tackle Box. It is famous for its party deck where individuals can party to hype music while enjoying the cool breeze blowing from the Caribbean Sea. That party deck proved to be extremely dangerous as it fell to the pressure of a massive Saturday night crowd. Over 500 people were partying at Tackle Box on Saturday night, March 30th. It is a relatively small structure and 500 is definitely beyond capacity. As the crowd drank, danced, jumped and pounded the structure with several tons of accumulated body weight, there was no real concern about the vulnerability of the wooden structure. At about 1:30 a.m. on Sunday morning, part of the party deck collapsed and over 40 individuals fell into the sea. Fortunately, no one was seriously hurt. Unfortunately, those individuals lost personal items such as cell phones, jewelry, cameras, cash and more. Adding insult to injury, the management of the establishment seems unwilling to address individuals inquiring about compensation for lost property. Tackle Box was closed for the night and it is for the San Pedro Town Council to decide when it will reopen.

Mexico Daylight Saving time starts on Sunday, April 7th
The Embassy of Mexico informs that on Sunday, April 7th Mexico will begin Daylight Saving Time (Horario de Verano). On that day, clocks in Mexico will go forward one hour. That means that Mexico’s local time will run 1 hour ahead of Belize’s local time until October 27th, 2013. For example, 9:00 am in Belize local time will be in Mexico 10:00 am local time. For those traveling within Mexico, the Embassy reminds that the Mexico Daylight Saving Time applies to most of the Mexican territory, including Chetumal, Cancun, Merida, Campeche, Mexico City and Veracruz. If you are in transit through Mexico, please check your flight’s local time. For further information about the Daylight Saving Time in Mexico, please contact the Embassy of Mexico at 223-0193 or 223-0194 or write to pressoffice@embamex.bz

A Brief and Timely Word on Belize
Some of us make history; some write history; some read history; and some interpret history. Sad to say, some of us distort history. Although a macro and micro comparison, America and Belize are contemporaries of the early 1920’s, according to Byron Foster, “the date of the settlement was given as 1638.” However, it is said, purportedly, that Sir Walter Raleigh and Peter Wallace visited Belize before 1620. Whether the beginning of a relationship is the engagement or the wedding may be arguable, considering the engagement as a relationship that is prospective of the wedding. A long settlement, a territorial victory on September 10th, 1798 and British colonial status in 1862 preceded a long struggle leading to our Independence in 1981. The most regrettable consequence of British colonialism to Belize is the legacy of the long and lingering territorial dispute; the unfounded claim by Guatemala, despite our having become an independent and sovereign nation. Now the very controversial prospect of simultaneous referenda in conjunction with Guatemala to decide whether or not to send the matter to the International Court of Justice faces us as a country. Interestingly, the most recent development is that Guatemala is now requesting a postponement of the bilaterally agreed upon date for the referenda. However, should the matter go to the ICJ and the decision is for any transference of, or interference with the Belize we have known, our territorial integrity, repeatedly reaffirmed by the slogan, “not one square centimetre”, and our much loved patriotic song, “God’s Goodness Gave this Land to Me” will be history, unless God intervenes and defends us. And will He not? He has done it before! There are a few controversial aspects in the history of Belize. One of them is the veracity of the visit of Sir Walter Raleigh and Peter Wallace before 1620. Another is the frequent bone of contention regarding The Battle of St. George’s Caye. Distortions and negations of unwelcomed history by nations, even to the point of rewriting history, are not new. A classic example is in an interview by satellite in 1977 when Walter Cronkite questioned Anwar Sadat about the Israelites in Egyptian bondage. His response was, “There is no record in our history that Jews were held slaves in Egypt.” That is a most audacious national statement in the face of scriptural and oral history.

The Reporter

Guardian/ Sports Council leads Interoffice softball
The Guardian/National Sports Council continues to lead the 2013 Belize City Interoffice Softball Competition with another victory 18-14 over the Belize Bank last Wednesday while the Belize Water Services outlasted Belize Telemedia 9-8 at the Rogers’ Stadium last Wednesday, March 27.

Darnell Barrow wins Cross Country
Darnell Barrow of the Santino’s team came within six minutes of setting a new record time, when he clocked 5:46:49 on his 150 mile ride from Leslie’s Imports in Belize City to San Ignacio and back to win the 85th annual Holy Saturday Cross Country Cycling Classic organized by the Belize Cycling Association on Saturday, March 30. It was the fastest time for the Cross Country since American rider Ryan Bauman, also riding for the Santino team, set the record of 5:40:12 in 2008.

Blogs

The Iguana Project at the San Ignacio Hotel And Learning to Eat Termites
Though you might not know it by just driving by, the San Ignacio Hotel Resort sits on quite a few acres of really beautiful jungle leading down to the Macal River. There are plenty of trails but you are going to want to get one of the hotel guides to lead you a 3 minute walk to the Green Iguana Project. A very cool program initiated by the hotel to educate guests, Belizeans and especially children about this native animal and how they (especially the “shes”) need to be protected in the wild. Green iguanas are purely vegetarian (unlike the more common “Wish Willys” on Ambergris Caye) and considered good eats in Belize…they are often referred to as “Bamboo Chicken”. The most prized eating is the pregnant female hunted in the spring for her meat and her eggs. I am not one to judge but seems to me that hunting pregnant animals is, as Belizeans say, “bad style”. Mature females can carry up to 80 eggs…and, well, you can see how killing them is dangerously diminishing the population. But let’s get to the tour… Here is our guide Eddie pointing out a good sized termite nest. Apparently, if you are lost in the jungle, you are going to want to eat these nasty albino ants. Wild mangos, bananas, maybe tasty berries…or a nice roasted pheasant? No. You must learn to eat termites.

“I’m Doing Fine Now” in Ambergris Caye, Belize.
Got up this morning with the mouth – following the dental work yesterday – feeling a lot less sore. The gums beld a little early on but I’m doing fine now. Even so I thought I would start off today’s edition going for a sympathy vote! Started the day by comparing quotes for golf carts purchased in the ‘States versus one purchased on Ambergris Caye. Providing that I gain acceptance to the Qualified Retirement Program (“QRP”) I can import a vehicle absent import tax and the saving of this levy allied to the generally cheaper purchase price in the ‘States can make this a financially attractive proposition. Obviously if we elect to take this route I will need to organise shipping but I have already got a quote for this from Manray Express, a fairly new freight forwarding agent based on Ambergris Caye. Rose and I then moved on to checking the bathroom and kitchen items that we want and then entered them in to a spreadsheet, along with screen grabs , for forwarding to Daniel Camal our building contractor. Hopefully every thing we want is available . If not it is ‘back to the drawing board’. With the administrative side of the day out of the way Rose and I were more than ready to go and see our build in Ambergris Caye, Belize so we set off and got there at just before 4 pm.

International Sources

From tarantulas in Belize to tutoring in South Africa: Not your typical spring break
Connecticut College students, faculty and staff scattered across the globe to take full advantage of the College’s two-week spring break in March. For example: Professors Manuel Lizarralde and Steve Loomis took their Tropical Biology class to Belize to take stock of the rainforest diversity. The class caught several incredible creatures, including a six-foot boa constrictor and four red belly tarantulas – one as large as a human hand. Senior Pablo Tutillo traveled to a Qatar to present a paper he wrote for his Islamic Traditions Class, while freshman Alexandra Luciani spoke about LGBTQ issues in children’s books at the 20th annual True Colors Conference at the University of Connecticut. A group of professors traveled to South Africa to learn about environmental justice issues there. The professors are part of a team developing a global environmental justice curriculum at the College with a $200,000 grant from the Christian A. Johnson Endeavor Foundation. Two students volunteered at a clinic in Haiti and eight students accompanied Residential Education and Living Director Sara Rothenberger on a community service trip to South Africa. Check out the slide show for more on these and other exciting trips: Spring Break 2013 Slideshow.


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Chaa Creek is an award-winning luxury Belize Resort, rated as one of the worlds best Eco Lodges. We are a pioneer in adventure travel to Belize since 1981!
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We manage a variety of homes, apartments, condos and commercial properties here on Ambergris Caye. Our minimum lease on ALL properties is six months.
Conch Shell Inn: All rooms are right on the beach in the heart of San Pedro, so within walking distance to anything and everything!!
Lil’ Alphonse has snorkel equipment to fit anyone as well as Marine Park Tickets and flotation devices to assist those not as experienced.
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