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#462677 - 04/19/13 12:38 PM Today's Belize News: April 19, 2013
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The San Pedro Sun

Lisel Alamilla to receive University of Idaho International Alumni Achievement Award
The Senator, Honorable Lisel Alamilla, Minister of Forestry, Fisheries and Sustainable Development for Belize, has been honored by the University of Idaho’s College of Natural Resources (CNR), as the winner of its, “2013 International Alumni Achievement Award”. She will be presented with the award at a banquet honoring outstanding CNR alumni and students in Moscow, Idaho, on Thursday, April 18, 2013. Minister Alamilla was nominated for this award due to her outstanding achievements, including her appointment as a minister in Belize’s Cabinet, her selection as winner of the 2012 Whitley Award for Nature and her selection as winner of the 2010 Marsh Award for Conservation Leadership. Each year the CNR Leadership Team convenes to nominate six distinguish college alumni for awards. The International Alumni Achievement Award is given to an alumnus who has a career is some aspect of natural resources, whose career exemplifies a record of distinction and international service in natural resources, and who is recognized as having made a difference in natural resource management in their country.

Dredging – mangrove clearance taking place north of marina channel
The San Pedro Sun can confirm that dredging is taking place in an area north of the San Pedro Marina Channel (located south-west of Ambergris Caye). The person to whom the dredging permit has been issued to is Darrin Sherry for Royal Belizean Land Co. S.A. The San Pedro Sun can also confirm that the recommendation was granted by the San Pedro Town Council (SPTC) and signed by Mayor Daniel Guerrero on April 2, 2013. Documents obtained by The San Pedro Sun shows that the owner of Lot Number 5481 and 5482 in the San Pedro Registration Section intends to dredge a total of 76, 917 cubic yards of sand, silt and mud. However the person has divided the dredging into three phases; the first will see 16,851 cubic yards of material dredged, the second 11,666 cubic yards and the third 48,400 cubic yards. It is interesting to note that the law requires an Environmental Impact Assessment (EIA) for any dredging exceeding 50,000 cubic yards of material. On March 8, 2013, the Government of Belize, through the Department of Natural Resources and the Environment approved a mining (dredging) permit which expires on December 31, 2013. The permit was granted a month before Sherry received the recommendation from the SPTC. The permit (for extraction) indicates that not more than 16,000 cubic yards of material shall be extracted from burrow sites around the properties in question.

Three more officers join the San Pedro Police Department
The San Pedro Police Formation has been slowly growing and with the recent six new officers, the formation counts with 39 policemen. They are tasked in ensuring the protection of life and property on the island of Ambergris Caye. Last week we presented you with two of the six new officers and in this issue, The San Pedro Sun introduces three more police constables. Woman Police Constable (WPC) number 1554 Arilee Young is originally from San Ignacio Cayo. She has recently graduated from the Belize Police Academy and her first placement is at the San Pedro Police Formation. Just as WPC Young, Police Constable (PC) number 1459 Norman Coye Jr is also a recent graduate of the Belize Police Academy and his first assignment was to Ambergris Caye. PC Coye Jr is from Cotton Tree Village in the Cayo District. PC number 1443 Hector Blanco is also new to the police force and he too is a new graduate from the Belize Police Academy. He is originally from Orange Walk Town.

Ambergris Today

San Pedro Darts Team Wins Big Creek Dart Classic
The Jolly Roger Reloaded Darts Team, organizer and host of the first BIG CREEK GROUP ANNUAL DARTS CLASSIC, takes great pleasure in formally thanking Mr. Anuar Flores, Buisness Leader, and his Board of Directors of the Big Creek Group Of Companies for their sponsorship of our dart tournament held on April 13th & 14th, 2013. We also applaud the company for the commitment to venture into curving of the youths into the sport of darts in the country of Belize. This show of sportsmanship through its participation, endorses the company’s mission statement of “A Company In Touch With Tomorrow”. The Big Creek Darts Classic was a huge success with a brilliant display of camaraderie and unity to foster a new generation of dartists in Belize. The host team through this medium would like to also thank Fr. Timothy Thompson (SJC), the Minister of Sports, Hon. Herman Longsworth, “Open Your Eyes” Management, Staff and anchors, for such a quick response to readily endorse such encouragement to inspire the young people and to revive the consciousness to pass on the skill of yesteryear before it is buried with us, and The Belize City Lion’s Club, for the use of the “Lester Young Lion’s Hall” for the venue.

Unknown Graffiti Artist Spreads Flower Power Around San Pedro
The message might be that of Peace, Love or Happiness, but the images of flowers that have been plastered around the island by an unknown graffiti artist surely bring a smile to your face when you see it. Or maybe it is a puzzled face that people make when they see these random images of flowers (of different sizes and colors) that have been pasted in random areas of San Pedro, Ambergris Caye. There is a large colorful one on a utility post by The Island Academy, a large black one on the concrete fence of the San Pedro Roman Catholic School and tiny ones all around. You have to have a keen eye to actually catch a few. I got out to conduct some investigating this morning, but there were no clues as to who posted these flowers around town. There seem to be no witnesses around as it seems that they were posted in the middle of the night. Clever!

Public Consultation For San Pedro’s Solid Waste Management Project
Keeping La Isla Bonita clean is something that the San Pedro Town Council has been arduously working on. There has been a massive cleanup campaign taken into effect to target specific areas of the island in different time periods so as to effectively cover the entire island and educated the people and maintain the island as clean as possible. The collection of garbage has always been the responsibility of the Town Council and the disposal of the garbage has been in the southern side of the island in the dumpsite where all solid waste is disposed and burnt. But the disposal of the island’s garbage will change once the Solid Waste Management Project comes into effect. The Government of Belize has proposed to implement a project to improve solid waste management practices in four municipalities of the Western Corridor of Belize (San Pedro Ambergris Caye, Caye Caulker, Belize City and San Ignacio/Santa Elena) that will support the goals of environmental protection, natural resource conservation, and protection of public health, safety and welfare.

Responsibility To Whom And For What?
In my articles I try to point out and describe to readers, both inside and outside of Belize, the many responsibilities as well as the essential needs of educators, students, parents, and the community/country at large. The bottom line and ultimate goal of each article presented in this column and on belizeguidance.blogspot.com is to encourage each individual, not only students but the entire country, to keep improving and growing productively in the new 21st Century. My recent observations and striking descriptions (with apologies to no one) of “learned helplessness” throughout Belize have elicited quite numerous and varied individual responses throughout social media such as Facebook, Blogs, and emails. I respect and will honor each individual’s request for privacy. Nonetheless, it was very encouraging to see that, despite the scant or few comments usually posted under each new article, so many of you readers “do care” about how our Education Systems in Belize work, and whether or not they serve the nation productively. Most encouraging of all was to see how many of you, according to the many emails you sent me, are genuinely interested in improving our Education systems in Belize.

Misc Belizean Sources

Barry Bowen Bridge closed on May 15
to all vehicular traffic for one or two weeks.

New Horizons provides veterinary care to animals of Belize
U.S. veterinary professionals provided treatment to various types of animals April 17 in Orange Walk, Belize, as part of a training exercise called New Horizons. The veterinary team treated approximately 340 dogs, seven horses and one cat. Elisa Castellanos, Orange Walk resident and owner of Napoleon, a 10-year-old Labrador and pit bull dog, was excited the clinic provided free veterinary care for dogs in the town. “I love this effort because it is very much missing here in Orange Walk,” she said. “When I heard about it, I told everybody.” Castellanos wants as many dogs as possible to be vaccinated at the clinic. “My neighbors have never given their dogs vaccinations,” she said. “I have some random dogs in my neighborhood, but I will make the trips back and forth.” Castellanos also said she believes this clinic will make a big difference in the community. “A lot of it is people are not educated what to do for their dogs and the responsibilities of it,” she said. “We each have a responsibility to do something. We just have to do what we can in our community.”

IMF concludes consultation mission to Belize
An International Monetary Fund (IMF) mission led by Gerardo Peraza, visited Belize from April 8-18, to conduct its yearly review of the country’s economy in the context of the IMF’s Article IV consultation, which began in November last year. Peraza released the following statement in Belmopan at the conclusion of the meetings on Thursday: “This year’s Article IV consultation mission took place after the completion of an external public debt exchange. The mission welcomes the collaborative dialogue between the government of Belize and the Creditors Committee to achieve a consensual debt restructuring. “In 2012, economic activity accelerated thanks to a strong rebound in agriculture and services, despite a sharp decline in crude oil production. Output growth is estimated at 5.3 percent of Gross Domestic Product (GDP), led by a recovery from the 2011 effects of weather-related damages to commodity exports. Inflation averaged 1.4 percent in 2012, as commodity price pressures abated. The external current account deficit widened to about 1.7 percent of GDP, up from 1.1 percent of GDP in 2011, due to a steep drop in crude oil exports and higher imports of fuel and electricity. The fiscal primary surplus for FY2012/13 is expected to decline to 1.3 percent of GDP from 2.3 percent of GDP in FY2011/12. After two years of decline, credit to the private sector recovered in 2012. For 2013, output growth is expected to moderate to about 2.5 percent as the main export crops stabilize and crude oil production continues to contract.

Belize to develop its first credit reporting system to increase access to finance
IFC, a member of the World Bank Group, is helping Belize establish its first credit reporting system, which will allow financial institutions to share credit information and better manage lending risks, thereby expanding access to finance for individual borrowers and small businesses. With support from the Canadian International Development Agency, IFC and the Central Bank of Belize are co-hosting the third Caribbean Credit Reporting Conference today in Belize City. The conference will bring together representatives from financial institutions, credit unions, utilities, insurance companies and central banks in the region to build awareness and deepen knowledge of credit reporting systems. IFC organized previous conferences in St Kitts and Nevis and Jamaica in 2012. “A credit reporting system is key to the development of a sound economy,” said Marilyn Gardiner-Usher, deputy governor of the Central Bank of Belize. “It helps to reduce risks for financial institutions and often leads to lower interest rates, making loans more affordable and more widely available. That’s a win-win for Belize.”

Heartz FC Family Day
The Heartz Football Club has uploaded some football pictures from their 'Family Day' this last weekend. "HeartzFC Family Day with Adventures FC"

PACT at UB Earth Day
The University of Belize had their Earth Day today, and the Protected Areas Conservation Trust was there to take some pictures of the event. Lots of people showed up for the food, fun, and games. "PACT attended the University of Belize's Earth Day Celebrations 2013. We helped to judge the Trash-On Show Competition! Kudos to all participants, especially the winners: Kuxlin Ha Primary School - 1st Place St. Martin's Primary School - 2nd Place United Evergreen Primary School - 3rd Place"

'My Body is Precious' Tours Cayo
The play 'My Body is Precious' is on tour around Belize, and it is coming to Cayo tomorrow. The Special Envoy for Women and Children is promoting the new book with the same name to combat the sexual exploitation of children. The play will be in Belmopan, at the UB Auditorium at 10am, and then in Benque, at the Marshalleck Stadium, at 2pm.

Black Hole Drop
One of Caves Branch's most amazing tours is their famous Black Hole Drop, where you rappel into a 300 foot deep cenote. If you crave adventure in Cayo, this is for you. Some of the best Cayo jungle lodges, including Crystal Paradise, Mariposa, and Parrot Nest, got to experience it so they could better answer their guest's questions about the unique adventure. "Ian Anderson's Caves Branch Jungle Lodge offers one of the most extreme rappelling adventures in Belize with their Black Hole Drop. It's around an hour hike to a huge cenote that you rappell 300 feet into. You then have a delicious lunch, and explore the cenote. There are caves in it too."

Succotz Festival Weekend
The Succotz Fiesta is this weekend, and they are having the opening ceremony tomorrow with the Super Furia Band. Saturday and Sunday is when the fiesta really takes off. They'll be having a bicycle race, and fun in the Mopan. There will be live music, food, and games for the entire family. Feliz Fiesta!

Belizean Cold Cake Version 2
This is the 2nd version of Cold Cake. In this version, I eliminated the jello and added sugar and butter to the Nestle's Cream. I think added the sugar made all the difference for this dish for me. It wasn't too sweet and the cookies are a delight in each bite.

Channel 7

Police Get Aviation Fuel, No Luck In Finding Plane
Tonight, nine drums or 450 gallons of aviation fuel are sitting at the Ladyville police station – the product of an all-day search by Ladyville police and the Belize Special assignment group yesterday. At 10:00 in the morning, they received information that a plane was circling in the area West of Crooked Tree. A team of two dozen BDF soldiers and police were dispatched to scour the vast area between Crooked Tree and Shipyard. 7news got information as well, but our quest only took us to the Lagoon at behind Crooked Tree, as the terrain was treacherous beyond that. But police persisted, and at 2:30 pm, between an area known as Backlanding and Shipyard they encountered an abandoned runway – one that had been destroyed by BDF explosives months ago. But about 100 yards from the runway they found 9 full drums of aviation fuel. The drums were covered with palms and Bay leaves – likely for concealment and protection against the sun. There were also 16 empty clear plastic fuel containers beside them, likely used for refueling vehicles and ATV’s.

Ladyville Police Catch Burglars In Act, Shoot One; HeÂ’s Critical
Ladyville Police shot a man they allegedly caught committing a burglary this afternoon. 21 year old Ryan Lozano is in a critical condition at the KHMH – after police shot him in the midsection. Ladyville Police shot a man they allegedly caught committing a burglary this afternoon. 21 year old Ryan Lozano is tonight at the KHMH in a critical condition – after he was shot by police. Police say that at 12:20 this afternoon, the responded to the report of a burglary in progress in Los Lagos. When they got there, they saw 27 year old Ladyville resident Lenny Benguche hiding behind the house while Lozano was walking out. Police say he had a crowbar and a knife and they cautioned him – but he continued to advance in, quote, “a threatening manner.” Police then opened fire, hitting him in the midsection. But this evening 7news travelled to Ladyville to where the shooting happened. Neighbors confirmed that they heard 4 gunshots ring out – and when it did, they say the two men were already lying face down on the ground. They said they saw neither a crowbar nor any knife. Lozano’s mother was told by doctors that her son was shot twice- once to the back and once to his side. Tonight Lozano is on life support at the KHMH still hanging on to life and his mother Cynthia Usher, has still not been contacted by police. She said she has had troubles with her son.

IMF Urges GOB To Reign In Wage Bill
The IMF today concluded its Article IV consultation with Belize – and they say government has to watch its wage bill. A press release issued this afternoon reports that discussions with the government focused on how to take advantage of the breathing room provided by the Superbond renegotiation. The IMF recommends what it calls “robust fiscal consolidation,” among other measures. They emphasize quote, “(placing) debt and financing needs on a faster downward trajectory,” and continue to say that quote, “the focus of fiscal policy should be on spending restraint—especially moderating wage pressures—and reversing the erosion of the tax revenue base.” The release also points to “a high…level of nonperforming loans” – in the commercial banks and urges government to “(tackle) major impediments to doing business in order to better attract investment, expand exports, and bolster external sustainability.” The more complete staff report will be issued in June.

Another Bee Attack In North
There was another killer bee attack in the Orange Walk District today. 72 year old Wilhelm Nuefeld, a Mennonite of Camp 18 in Shipyard was rushed to the Northern Regional Hospital after bees swarmed him while he was working behind his house. KREM News reports that he was attempting to transfer swine from one stall to another and was not aware of a hive of bees in the stall. Fortunately he was treated and released. His horse was also attacked but survived as well. There’s also news about the other tragic case which occurred in Little Belize. As we reported 4 year old Enrique Thiessen was killed by a swarm of bees while his five year old brother, Pedro was critically injured. Well, Pedro has been showing signs of improvement, and was released from the Northern Medical Plaza today to attend his little brother’s funeral. But when that’s done, he’ll have to go right back to the hospital. Dr. Marco Tulio Mendez reports that his liver is still swollen and he has to be kept for two more days of observation.

Sidewalk Demolition Raises Concerns
In March of last year, the Sustainable Tourism Project started works for the Belize City Fort Point Pedestrian Walk. The 5.47 million dollar project promised to deliver a refurbished North Front Street from the bridge-foot to the Memorial Park. It’s been a long 14 months since the ground breaking ceremony launching the development and so, residents of the city have been forced to deal extensively with the limited road access while the contractors do their work. The works are now approaching the foot of the Swing Bridge, and so today we caught up with the Project Director for an update on when they will be completely finished. We also asked about the demolition of the newly built sidewalk in front of the Image Factory. The director told us that it is due to a drainage issue that they had to fix. She also discussed the challenges which have delayed the completion of the works. Christy Mastry - Sustainable Tourism Project "Well North Front street right now is about maybe another three or four weeks away from completion. The entire project was scheduled to be totally completed by the end of April. North Front St. had some unique challenges that many of the other roads didn't have or not in as much dire need of attention as North Front St. did. It was the variation of the entrances of all of the buildings to the actual sidewalk and then the relationship to the sidewalk to the road bed itself. So because of that it definitely posed a drainage challenge to the contractor.

OCEANA: Win Some, Lose Some
On Tuesday Oceana Belize had a major victory in court when they up-ended 6 offshore oil drilling contracts. Well, their next challenge in the Supreme Court hasn’t been enjoying as much success as that one. That’s because since the Chief Elections Officer disqualified 8,047 of their signatures to trigger a referendum on off-shore oil drilling in 2012, the GOB attorneys have been ensuring that the court doesn’t reverse it. Today, once again, GOB, successfully managed to convince Justice Michelle Arana to dismiss an application from Oceana for leave to appeal concerning her ruling to strike the challenge out on a technicality of tardiness in December of 2012. We spoke to both sides outside of court, including Audrey Matura-Shepherd, who is undeterred by this dismissal. She says that these setbacks will not discourage her from trying to get the Court of Appeal to hear the matter. Denys Barrow - Attorney for GOB "The Oceana people had applied for leave to appeal against the earlier decision of Justice Arana, striking out their claim, which have been filed out of time. We took the objection on this application today that again, they have made a misstep and they applied for leave to appeal when they had a clear right to appeal without making any application for leave. Therefore the application for leave was a mistake. It was meaningless and as the judge said she has no authority to give leave. If they wanted to appeal they ought to have filed a notice of appeal. So they have no appeal"

Murder Way Up in 2013
Crime Statistics show that – for the first quarter of 2013, the murder rate is way up. Comparing the period of January to March 2012 with the same period in 2013, 30 murders were recorded in 2013, as compared to 23 for the same period in 2012. Looking at it on a district-by-district basis, Belize City showed an alarming increase, from 11 murders between January and March 2012, compared to 26 murders for the same period in 2013. All other districts except Toledo were down in the number of murders reported. According to the numbers, cases of Robbery, burglary and theft were all down.

Jamaican Police Minister Cries For Crime
And while those murder figures are enough to make anyone hang their head in weary resignation, in Jamaica, the staggering crime statistics almost brought the Police Minister Peter Bunting to tears. In a speech that has triggered angry responses from Jamaicans, on Saturday Bunting said only divine intervention can solve his country’s problems – we have this report from CEEN News:.. Tamika Tomas Reporting "It was an emotional security Minister Peter Bunting who lamented the situation of the country's crime problem. After fifteen months on the job, the Minister says he is frustrated over what he described as little results despite the best efforts of the security forces. Speaking at the anual cry and thanksgiving service for the security forces, as the Northern Caribbean university over the weekend, the Minister noted that he was in a dark time in his career as Minister and only divine intervention would solve the crime misery." Peter Bunting, Minister of National Security, Jamaica "After fifteen months I am convinced that the best efforts of the security forces by itself, will not solve the crime problem in Jamaica but it is going to take divine intervention; touching the hearts of a wide cross section of the society"

UB Researchers Touching On Important Topics
Research: it’s the duty of every university to promote it – and for the third year, UB’s Faculty of Management and Social Sciences held their Annual Student Research Conference. The idea is to get out the research work students have been doing in a specific subject area Dr. Jean Briceno-Perriot - University of Belize "The research are in areas of Accounting, Tourism, Management and some social Science. It's very intense and they have to work very hard and at times it is stressful for them. They get it done and as you can see from the response of them being here it's kind of a goal for them now. We want our study to be presented." Shenira Hoare - Student Researcher "Well my research was mainly to focus on the factors that are contributing to a GPA change in students, specifically Accounting students that are doing their Bachelors Degree after they have relocated to Belize City. My findings were that specifically because it was such a small group, there were minimal changes in their GPA. So for the minority that changed didn't feel like their parents' expectations were a push for them to do their best. They didn't have the family support. They did not feel like they had good relationships with those they lived with. So for the minority that did change those were the factors that affected them the most and caused them to shift from having a higher GPA to a lower GPA."

Central Banks Setting Up Credit Bureaus
And while UB’s students are researching business, the central bank was kinda sorta doing something similar. They’ve teamed up with the International Finance Corporation to set up a Belize’s first credit reporting system. Today, they held a press conference and the Deputy governor of the central Bank explained the importance of credit bureaus. Here’s how it goes. Marilyn Gardiner Usher – Deputy Governor, Central Bank of Belize "A credit reporting system is key to development of a sound economy. It helps to reduce risks to financial institutions and often leads to lower interest rates making loans more affordable and more widely available. We expect the data to come financial and non-financial providers like the utilities and the insurance companies. So that this can actually have the impact of bringing individual, small and medium enterprises who don't normally hold accounts and have a relationship with the bank, to have access to their reputation and collateral to the formal financial system."

Triple Fatality Reported
There was a terrible accident at mile six on the Western highway just a short while ago. At about 6:50 pm, a maroon Chevy extended cab pickup and a black car collided head on. First images from the scene show sent by our team show massive frontal damage to both vehicles. Our team reports that at least two persons have been extracted dead from the pickup – and bystanders say one more person is dead inside. Another was taken out alive and rushed away via ambulance. We’ll have more on this before the end of the news.

PROFILE
Tonight’s I am Belize profile of Mona Lisa Mangar.

Making The Most OF Disaster Preparedness
This afternoon at the Radisson, Godwin Hulse the Minister in Charge of Emergency Management briefed the media about the highlights coming out of the Regional Disaster Preparedness technical advisory committee meeting organized by Caribbean Disaster Emergency Management Agency - CDERA. Hon. Godwin Hulse – Minister of National Emergency Management "Some of the highlights coming out of today's meeting were, still ongoing as you know, but there's the strategic direction was endorsed. That is where we are going from 2013 to 2018 and so there was a tremendous amount of discussion there that was endorsed and so that now goes up to council. The country's support program was examined and supported. A country support program means for example; What will Belize get? What the other agencies will get? That was also was discussed and then of course the operational planning enhancement. How we are going to move in all of these changes that are happening? We looked at communications systems and that sort of thing; the world is a changing place. You know, couple years ago we sent a mail and we would hope you got it and then from there we sent you a 'telex' and the we started sending you a fax and then we got cellphone and now we have facetime. So we are going up. So communication is changing and how we interact and communicate with each other. In between all of that, a myriad of smaller issues so fundamentally that is where are and what we have been doing so far."

A Fiesta With A Tradition
The SAN JOSE Succotz Fiesta has become a major annual event for the WESTERN village and it is scheduled for April 18, 19 and 21. But oftentimes, these events become established for a particular symbolic reason, which is lost on the younger generation who look forward to it only for the fun and excitement involved. The spokesperson for the Fiesta gave 7News a brief history about the importance of the event. Wilson Patt - Spokesperson, Benque Succotz Fiesta "Usually for the 'fiesta" we try to promote our own traditional dances and folklore and also the traditional dishes. That is the main focus of the fair. It was done yearly from the 1920’s it was done more as a religious but traditional event. Now its being done like a fundraising drive. We have moved away from the Catholic since the St. Joseph day, the patron Saint is 19th of March and it falls within lent so we have decided to move away from lent and move it into a more traditional way and there isn't a religion that can do any harm."

Vansh Giveaway Day 4
Today, the Vansh Charles Birthday giveaway continued here at Channel 7 on Albert street. As we’ve told you, all this week, Monday to Friday all children 12 and under who are born on April 19th, between the years 2001 and 2012 can come to Channel 7 to pick up their gift bag and a gift certificate. We spoke to a few of the recipients who’ve come form all over the country. And we spoke to one mother who is just happy to have her April 19th birthday after he was switched at birth in a hospital mix-up Daniel Ortiz "Now that he's celebrating his birthday. What's it like?" Sofia Fuller - Mother of 2 Year Old Kent Moses "Well, i'm very happy and greatful everyday that I have my son." Mother of Shernelle Anderson "I feel great about this. It's a wonderful thing to do for kids that are born on April 19th." Sherl Lewis "Hi" Daniel Ortiz "How do you feel about receiving your gift today?" Alliyah Salam "Happy." Daniel Ortiz "You're happy. What school do you go to?"

Channel 5

Brutal accident on highway kills three
There is breaking news of a fatal traffic accident on the George Price Highway that happened just before seven this evening. Three persons are now dead and two survived when there was a collision between a small car and a pickup truck. The persons who perished were in the pickup truck and are believed to [...]

Terrible dredging on the north end of Ambergris Caye
On Tuesday, OCEANA won a major legal victory when six oil contracts were declared null and void by the Supreme Court. Tonight, there is a developing story from San Pedro that is stirring unease on the island. It is reported that north of San Pedro’s Marine Channel, seventy-six point nine cubic yards are being dredged [...]

Aviation fuel found near Crooked Tree; reports of plane attempting to land confirmed
On Wednesday, reports circulated that a plane had been heard circling somewhere behind Crooked Tree, but we could get no official confirmation and our investigations came up empty-handed. But today, there is official word from the Belize Police Department, of a significant find of what is believed to be aviation fuel. Following the reports of [...]

Union salary increase dependent on Maranco Oil
Since the announcement of an encouraging oil show in the northwest block, an area in the Orange Walk District spanning nine hundred and fifty-two square miles, the Ministry of Energy & Science has remained relatively quiet about the results of an assessment to determine whether the find is in commercial quantity.  On March thirtieth, prospecting [...]

APAMO strongly disagrees with rosewood amnesty
The sale of confiscated rosewood announced by the Minister of Forestry, Fisheries and Sustainable Development on Monday has been drawing huge public outcry. This afternoon, the Association of Protected Areas Management Organization added its considerable weight to the public condemnation surrounding the recent decision by government regarding the amnesty, sale and exportation of rosewood. In [...]

Bad bus business resolved in the capital
Public transportation is flowing tonight following a meeting in Belmopan.  As it stands, the wrinkles have been ironed out between two competing companies over the Belmopan-Belize City run. Both have agreed to a formula making way for one of the companies to service the five o’clock run which transports most public officers from the Capital [...]

Violet Jones believes found bones are from lost son
On January nineteenth, 2011 distraught mother Violet Jones visited our studio to plead with the public for information on the whereabouts of her son, Matthew Gonzalez. Matthew lived in San Pedro, and had not been seen since January seventh, when reports are he went fishing. No information ever surfaced, and Violet Jones never found any [...]

Second bee sting victim is suffering liver damage
A five year old boy remains hospitalized at the Northern Medico Plaza in Orange Walk following an attack by killer bees. On Monday, Pedro Thiessen and his four year old sibling, Enrique were playing behind their house in the Little Belize Community in southern Corozal when they were stung repeatedly by the swarm of killer [...]

OCEANA loses on technicality on referendum, but fight not over
Oceana has had a good week in the court. Justice Oswell Legall ruled that several offshore contracts were null and void. It was a celebration that came with a terse reply from the Government that it would appeal the decision. Today, Oceana Belize returned to the Courthouse. This time they appeared inside the courtroom of [...]

Minister says it’s impractical to refuse entry to Guatemalan citizens
When he spoke to us today, Minister of Immigration Godwin Hulse also expanded on the plan to require new entry permits, at an additional cost, from all persons entering Belize with the newly proposed Guatemalan passport. The printing of the passports have been put to tender, but Guatemala is proposing that will retain a map [...]

John Baptist, accused of abusing minor, fails to appear in court
The trial of a Belize City man for sexually abusing a young girl had to be put on hold because the accused failed to return to court. John Baptist’s trial got underway last week in the Supreme Court and continued throughout the week, but earlier this week Baptist was a no show. He is accused [...]

13 packages of weed found in car
San Ignacio Police has recorded an impressive bust of cannabis. It happened on Wednesday at around twelve-thirty p.m. when a mobile patrol on the George Price Highway intercepted a green Toyota car with two men inside in front of Three Flags Superstore. A cursory search of the vehicle turned up nothing, but because of the [...]

Belize to implement a Credit Report System
Belize is establishing its first credit report system that when completed, financial institutions will be able to share credit information and improve on lending risks. The Central Bank is with support of the Canadian International Development Agency. News Five’s Jose Sanchez reports.   Jose Sanchez, Reporting The International Finance Corporation is assisting Belize to develop [...]

200 students graduate from Gang Resistance Education
Today more than two hundred students from the Buttonwood Bay Nazarene Primary School, the Queen Street Baptist School and the Saint Luke Methodist Primary School graduated from a new program in their schools called Gang Resistance Education and Training, or GREAT for short. The program was introduced to Belize in 2009 by the US Embassy [...]

Regional facilitators gather for disaster management conference
The Technical Advisory Committee of the Caribbean Disaster Emergency Management Agency today concluded a two-day session. The Committee includes representation of National Disaster Coordinators from the eighteen member states, as well as other participating regional bodies. The goal of the session was to come up with a cohesive, effective and forward thinking regional strategic plan [...]

Healthy Living examines the complications of the gall bladder
Many persons have gall stones and would not know about it until the pain begins to strike.  The stones form in the gall bladder from cholesterol, bile, salts and calcium. While galls stones affect all age groups, its formation increases with age, especially among women. In this week’s Healthy Living, we look at the complications [...]


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#462678 - 04/19/13 12:39 PM Re: Today's Belize News: April 19, 2013 [Re: Marty]
Marty Offline

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LOVE FM

GREAT Program Graduates Hundreds of Primary School Students on Gang Resistance Training
This morning over two hundred students from Queen Street Baptist Primary School, Buttonwood Bay Nazarene Primary School and Saint Luke Methodist Primary School graduated from the Gang Resistance Education and Training, GREAT, Program. The graduation ceremony was held at the Nazarene Ch...

Second Recognition Within A Month For Police Southern Zone
For the second consecutive month the Southern zone has been recognized for recording the lowest level of major crimes in the country. On Wednesday Minister of National Security John Saldivar made the presentation. A certificate for the best performance was presented to the ...

Two Ladyville Residents Caught Red Handed; Police Shoots One and Apprehended Both
A man was shot by a police officer earlier today. Preliminary reports are that about 12:20 this afternoon, police responded to a burglary in progress in the Los Lagos area. Upon arrival, police apprehended 27 year old Lenny Benguche who was hiding behind the house. Police say after...

Cancer Support Group Prepares For Annual Awareness Walk In Orange Walk
The Orange Walk Cancer support group will be holding its fifth cancer awareness walk this Saturday, April 20. The walk is both to create awareness of the illness and the fifth anniversary of the support group. President, Badrah Coleman tells us more. BADRAH COLEMAN ...

Villagers Plead For Water In Cayo District
The village of Armenia located a few miles outside the City of Belmopan on the Hummingbird Highway, in the Cayo District was initially settled by immigrants from Guatemala, El Salvador and Honduras who were fleeing civil war. Later on Mopan and K’ekchi Maya moved into the a...

Central Bank of Belize Spearheads Caribbean Credit Reporting Conference
“Achieving the Possibilities Through Credit Information Sharing” is the theme for a Caribbean Credit Reporting Conference spearheaded by the Central Bank of Belize, CBB, the International Finance Corporation, IFC, and the Canadian International Development Agency, CIDA, now...

Evangelistic Campaign Makes Its Way To Belize City
Preparations are underway for an Evangelistic Campaign entitled “Experience God” an initiative of the Seventh Day Adventist Church scheduled to kick off this Sunday in the Belama Phase One Park in Belize City. Pastor Osborn Collins, who is organizing the campaign spok...

Grace Primary School Choir Recruited For International Program
Grace Primary School Choir has been in existence for fifteen years and has touched the lives of many school children that have entered the gates of Grace Primary School. Presently the choir has about 60 members and has had the opportunity of performing in different neighbour countries ...

Aviation Fuel Found; Owners Unknown
A quantity of what may be aviation fuel was found in an area known as Back Landing in the Orange Walk District. Based on information received by Ladyville Police, on Wednesday at about 3pm, a team of Police officers from the Ladyville sub-formation along with members of the Belize Spec...

Association Involved in Management of Protected Areas Calls On Government To Rethink Amnesty On Rosewood
The Association of Protected Area Management Organizations (APAMO) has called on Government to rethink its position to implement an amnesty period, allowing the export of illegally harvested Rosewood. APAMO says while it was in full support of the moratorium declared one year...

CTV3

Five Year Old Stung By Bees Sent Home To Bury His Younger Brother
On Monday afternoon a four year old Mennonite boy from the community of Little Belize in Corozal lost his life after he was stung more than 500 times by killer bees. Five year old Pedro Thiessen and his younger brother 4 year old Enrique Thiessen were playing in an open lot located a few feet away from their home in Camp 70 when they were swarmed by killer bees. The boy’s father, Jacobo Thiessen and neighbor Issac Shmith aided the children and were also stung in the process. Four year old Enrique Thiessen was pronounced dead on arrival at the Northern Medical Plaza while his brother and father were admitted under critical condition. According to Doctor Marco Tulio Mendez, while Jacob Thiessen is out of the woods, the same cannot be said for his five year old son. Doctor Marco Tulio Mendez “Pues el niño se nota que está mejorando. Todavía está un poco hinchado pero el día de hoy sacamos algunas pruebas que le habíamos hecho el día anterior y nos dimos cuenta que había más inflamación en el hígado afortunadamente las otras pruebas de su riñón y las otras pruebas están normales. Lo único que se elevo es el hígado que era lo que esperábamos. El día de hoy el padre nos pidió que lo diéramos de alta por un rato porque iban enterar a su hermanito. Pero no más termine eso va a regresar. Los mayores ya están bien y ya les dimos de alta claro ellos no fueron severamente picados como el niño a quien vamos a tener con nosotros unos dos días más bajo observación.”

9 Gallons Of Aviation Fuel Confiscated By Police In Orange Walk
Yesterday Orange Walk Police received several calls from residents of Carmelita Village claiming to have heard the sound of a low flying airplane circling in the area, on Tuesday night and early Wednesday morning. We understand that police, along with members of the anti drug unit, combed the area from Carmelita Village to Crooked Tree but found nothing. Ladyville Police received the same information from residents living in Crooked Tree and the search was extended. At around 3:00pm a team of police officers from the Ladyville sub-formation along with members of the Belize Special Assignment Group visited an area known as Back Landing in the Orange Walk District which borders the village of Crooked Tree in Belize. There they found these nine plastic blue drums containing aviation fuel and sixteen empty white plastic five gallons hidden in some bushes. The items were discovered about 300 feet from an airstrip that had been destroyed previously by the Belize Defense Force. At the time of the discovery no one was in the area and all items recovered were transported to the Ladyville Police Station where they were labeled and kept as found property. So, what were 9 gallons of aviation fuel doing the in the area? Could it be that a drug plane was about to refuel and something went wrong? Those are questions that may never be answered, but one thing is for sure, residents of Carmelita say they are positive of what they saw and heard.

New System To Be Set In Place For Guatemalan Visitors
Since the news broke out that Guatemala’s new passports will feature a map in which Belize is included as part of the country’s territory, only demarcated by a dotted line to indicate the ongoing dispute between both countries, Belizeans have been up in arms. The People’s United Party has stated on the record that a PUP government will not allow any person holding a Guatemalan passport which shows Belize as a part of that country to enter Belize. But the Government of the day is not being so passionate about the situation. Minister of Foreign Affairs, Honorable Wilfred Elrington, has indicated that if Guatemalan passports include Belize; residents will still be allowed to enter the country. According to Elrington Belize cannot put to risk the good business relationship shared with Guatemala. But according to Minister of Immigration Honorable Godwin Hulse, there are certain measures that will be set in place.

Villagers Of Ranchito Tell GOB Leave Our Land Alone
On our newscast of April 3rd we brought you the story of the Pol family from the Village of San Joaquin in the Corozal District who claimed that Government was taking away their 3.6 acres of land located behind the village. Tonight, there is a similar scenario in the village of Ranchito only that this time it involves more than two hundred parcels of land and more than one family is being affected. Elmer Cornejo Reports. Elmer Cornejo - Reporting Tonight residents of Ranchito Village in Corozal are up in arms and are pointing fingers at the Government of Belize particularly the Ministry of Natural Resources. According to Orvin Rancharan, chairman of Ranchito Village, more than two hundred parcels of land are in the process of being taken away from villagers who already have a lease. Rancharan says that the lands in jeopardy were issued back in 2007 by the P.U.P Government. A year after there was a change in government as the United Democratic Party took office and that is when the struggle began. Orvin Rancharan: Ranchito Village Chair “We had never had a problem except since 2007 when these lands were issued in the Rancharan Layout and the reason we called it Rancharan Layout it was because we acquire it from Nataniel Rancharan almost 80 lots. We start facing a serious issue when the government change in 2008 but before that we had acquire lands in all areas in fact there are ten loan in Ranchito, with the latest land Rancharan Layout is where the problem is right now. What is happening to those lots is that we had surveyed the land and we charge $200 per person, all who were interested paid their $200 we didn’t discriminate got their lot and their file with official government receipt which they had gone to the lands.”

Land Grab In San Felipe Village
While that land dispute is taking place in the Village of Ranchito Corozal, trouble is also brewing in the Village of San Felipe Orange Walk. On Sunday, Israel Olivera, a resident of San Felipe Village was brutally attacked by two men from the same village, who by force wanted him to vacate the property on which he built his house on, four years ago. Olivera admits to not having the proper documents for the property which is located on the outskirts of the village. According to him, he has tried to obtain the lease papers for the land but it’s easier said than done. The men who attacked him are allegedly supporters of the United Democratic Party who have set their eye on the property. But that is not the only piece of land that is presently in dispute in the Village. Sixteen years ago, Terencio Magana took possession of a quarter acre parcel of land on which he planted several coconut and fruit trees. He has been taking care of the land ever since even though he has no proper documents. And that’s not because he hasn’t tried to take them out, the process is just too slow, he says. The bad news is that parcel 420 has been given to another resident of the village who is ready to construct. The only problem is, Magana says that land is his because he has squatter’s rights.

The Fight Against Cancer Is On
The Orange Walk Cancer Support Group has been providing much needed support for cancer patients over the past few years, and this coming Saturday the group will be hosting its 5th annual Cancer Walk in celebration of their 5th anniversary. The walk will be followed by a health fair at the Orange Walk Central Park. “The Fight is on against Cancer”, is this year’s theme and according to President of the group Badra Coleman, this year’s message is more than clear. Badra Coleman-President, Orange Walk Cancer Support Group “I think we are ready and we have been working for the past three months on this and so it is crunch time but we are fitting all in and we are ready and we know we will feel the support of our community. We have had good response and all our shirts are finished we might have just maybe ten shirt available it is a first come first serve but it is great to see the response throughout the country and we have raffle tickets going since March and we have raffle tickets all over the country and they have been sending and big up to Corozal also we have friend there and he is working for us every year.

Lions Zone 59 To Hold 35th Convention In San Estevan Orange Walk
Lions Zone 59 is hosting its 35th Annual three day Convention starting tomorrow, Friday April 20th 2013, through Sunday April 21st, in the village of San Estevan. “Lionism” has existed in San Estevan since 1978 and is one of four Lions Clubs in Belize. According to Zone Chairman, John Wongsam, the celebration is also an opportunity to seek new ways on how to make the community a more peaceful and safer place to live in. Today when we visited the Lions Crew in San Estevan we found them hard at work preparing for this year’s convention. The Official Welcome Ceremony kicks off at 8:00pm tomorrow with addresses from a number of guest speakers including Yolanda Gomez, General Manager of La Inmaculada Credit Union Limited. Ariel Munoz-President San Estevan Lion’s Club “El Sábado a las siete queremos comenzar y vamos a tener el pageant de las reinas y durante las ceremonias vamos a tener presentaciones de cada club y entre medio unos muchachitos van a dar una serenata a las reinas y acabando la ceremonia vamos a tener el baile con Super Furia band y hasta amanecer.

The Importance Of Donating Blood
The Northern Regional Hospital will be hosting a blood drive at this year’s health fair scheduled to be held immediately after the Cancer Walk on Saturday, April 20th, 2013. The drive is hoping to see more volunteers, as the need for blood is always very high and they are pleading for more public participation. A few recommended tips for donors are: Maintain a healthy iron level in your diet by eating iron rich foods such as red meat, fish, poultry, beans, spinach, iron-fortified cereals and raisins. Get a good night’s rest, drink an extra 16 ounces of water or non-alcoholic fluids before the donation, avoid fatty foods such as hamburgers, fries or ice-cream before donating since fatty foods can affect the tests performed on the blood. And if you are a platelet donor, your system must be free of aspirin 2 days prior to donation.

PlusTV

APAMO comments on recent Rosewood amnesty
The Rosewood Saga continues, as today, the Association of Protected Area Management Organizations (APAMO), the leading network of non-governmental conservation organizations, voiced its objection to and disappointment with the decision by the Ministry of Forestry, Fisheries and Sustainable Development to implement an amnesty period; which is now allowing for...

Bus Association meets with Transport Department
President of the Belize Bus Owners Cooperative (B.B.O.C.) Mr. Thomas Shaw, along with the Commissioner of Transport, the General Manager for Westline; Mr. Castillo and other relevant representatives; met this morning at the Belmopan Bus Terminal to bring resolution to a recent problem between both bus carriers. Plus news...

Washington University of Health and Science said it graduated 200 students
All this week we have been covering medical school operations in Belize. Yesterday we featured the concerns of one protestor who feels that the American Global University School of Medicine (AGUSM) has not been doing enough for Belize, and that school’s response. Today, vice president of operations for American...

Professional Standards Branch investigates two shootings by Police
A mid-day burglary took an unexpected turn for the culprit today. Police say that they responded to a burglary in progress in the Los Lagos Area and when they arrived there, they saw 27 year old Lenny Bengueche, a Ladyville resident, hiding behind the house. Shortly after, 23 year...

Arguement turns into brawl in Valley of Peace
An argument in the Valley of Peace Village turned into an all out brawl. On Tuesday night, a 19 year old resident of village was hanging out with another man at a local bar. They then decided to go to La Cabana night club in Belmopan on the man’s...

Belize hosts 3rd annual Caribbean Credit Reporting Conference
Credit is essential to businesses to obtain goods and services and to individuals to advance their livelihoods. Belize is in the process of establishing a credit reporting service and today the Central Bank of Belize hosted the 3rd annual Caribbean Credit Reporting Conference featuring representatives of financial institutions and...

UB hosts 3rd Annual Research Conference
The University of Belize (UB) has as part of its mandate the delivery of key research for national development. Its students are subject to numerous research classes where they learn the ins and outs of preparing and presenting research papers and have the option to do a final thesis...

UB hosts Earth Day Activities
Earth Day will be recognized globally on April 22nd of next week, but festivities have already begun to bring awareness to environmental conservation. For as we learned today, Earth Day is every day, as we should all seek to protect the earth and its natural resources daily. Today the...

Southern Zone maintains lowest levels of crime
For the second consecutive month, the Southern Zone and Dangriga Formation have maintained the lowest levels of major crimes throughout the country for the month of March. And yesterday, they were awarded by the Ministry of National Security for this success. Senior Superintendent Robert Mariano who heads the Southern ...

Hon. Lisel Alamilla recognized for work in natural resource management
Though she recently came under scrutiny for the Rosewood newly amnesty, the Minister of Forestry, Fisheries and Sustainable Development, the Hon. Lisel Alamilla is being recognized internationally for her work in natural resource management. The Minister has been honored by the University of Idaho’s College of Natural Resources, as...

The Guardian

UDP Chairman readies the troops for Village Council Elections
Every since Party Chairman, Alberto August took the reins of the office he's been moving around the country energizing the party's political machinery, getting it ready for the village council elections. Last weekend it was no different as he paid visits to five- constituencies in three districts. The weekend tour began on Thursday April 11th when he visited San Jose Palmar in the Orange Walk East constituency. Friday it was August Pine Ridge and San Felipe in the Orange Walk South constituency. Then it was the Calcutta Community on Saturday in the Corozal South East constituency. That very day he travelled to Corozal North and on Sunday it was Cayo Central.

Three-Week Amnesty but Rosewood Moratorium Remains in Effect
On the 14th of March, 2013, at the sixteenth session of the Conference of the Parties on the Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species of Wild Fauna and Flora (CITES) a decision was taken to regulate the international trade of rosewood and now the harvest and exportation of rosewood from Belize will fall under the CITES regulations. In order to regulate the trade of rosewood, the Ministry of Forestry, Fisheries and Sustainable Development needs to account for the entire pre-convention volume of harvested rosewood currently available in the country. The best way to make such an exercise successful in what has become an extremely shady trade is the implementation of an amnesty period.

Chetumal Boulevard ready
Mayor Darrel Bradley and Leader of the Opposition Francis Fonseca cut the ribbon officially declaring the Chetumal Boulevard open on Tuesday April 16th. According the Mayor Bradley it took over three months and 708 thousand dollars for the contractor RJB Construction to complete the plans which were designed by M & M Engineering. Most of the finances, he noted, went to the construction of drains alongside the boulevard. The road also consists of other features which include proper lining with therma-plastic lining and a beautified median which will be adopted by Westrac. According to the Mayor, the plan is to extend the paving to meet the river and await the construction of the 4th bridge which will link the north side of Belize City to the south side on Chetumal boulevard.

Irrelevant Victory on Illegal PUP Oil Contracts
Audrey Matura Sheppard, Vice President of Oceana in Belize, stood outside the Supreme Court and posed for the Guardian Newspaper holding a judgment by Justice Oswell Legal on Tuesday April 16th. Oceana along with Citizens Organized for Liberty Through Action (COLA) and the Belize Coalition to Save Our Natural Heritage had filed a claim in 2011 against the Minister of Natural Resources. They were seeking that the Supreme Court declare that offshore drilling agreements signed by the PUP government in 2004 and 2007 for 6 companies be declared illegal because they were in breach of the Environmental Protection Act, the Petroleum Act, the Fisheries Act, and the National Parks System Act. It is noteworthy that the 6 Production Sharing Agreements signed were all done under the People’s United Party Government’s tenure. Island Oil’s contract was signed on 25th May 2004, Miles Tropical Energy, Petrol Belize Company Limited, Princess Petroleum Belize Limited, Providence Energy Belize Limited and Sol Oil Belize Limited secretly signed their contracts on 12th October, 2007.

Give it a Rest Now
If you haven’t drawn this conclusion so far by way of inference, let me cue you in: I am a sympathizer of the United Democratic Party. And the Party I support has taken some big hits this past week, no maybes about it. Truly, the only good news “in the rush” since last Friday was the opening of Chetumal Street by the Belize City Mayor, Darrel Bradley. But that aside, it was downhill all the way and one can actually feel the excitement at Channel Fox when news time comes around.

Dean Dawson Jr. Charged for Wallace Donald Matura’s Murder
On Friday, April 12, police charged 22-year-old Dean Dawson Jr. for the murder of Wallace Donald Matura. On February 15, 48-year-old Wallace Donald Matura was shot while standing in front of VIP Wireless at the corner of Orange Street and East Canal. Minutes earlier he had intervened to stop an older male from harassing a female child. The man later returned with another male and opened fire with a handgun in the direction of Matura. He was shot to the stomach, left leg and left arm. He died six weeks later, on March 27, as a result of complications from the gunshot injuries.

Father and Son Taken to Court for Weed
Police conducted a search at a tire shop on Central American Boulevard owned by 67-year-old Genaro Gallego at 12 noon on Thursday, April 11th. Inside they found a bag containing 213 grams of cannabis stashed inside a tire. Gallego and his 33-year-old son, Jose Gallego, were arrested and charged with drug trafficking. Later that day they were escorted to the Belize City Magistrate’s Court to answer to the charge before Magistrate Dale Cayetano. Jose Gallego took responsibility for the drugs and pleaded guilty to the offense. Magistrate Cayetano issued a non-custodial sentence and fined him $10,000 plus $5 cost of court.

Densfield Lemott Charged for Snatching Wallet
On Tuesday, April 16, 33-year-old Densfield Lemott appeared in the Belize City Magistrate’s Court before Magistrate Dale Cayetano to answer to a charge of theft. 60-year-old tour guide, Errol Belisle, reported to police that he was in a Chinese shop at the corner of Raccoon and Allenby Street where he met two other men. Belisle had his wallet inside a bag while in the shop. However, when he later reached into the bag for his wallet it was missing. That was when he approached one of the men in the shop who he knew as Densfield Lemott and asked for his wallet.

Lloyd Alexander King’s Charge Upgraded to Murder of Ronald Rivers
A little before 11 a.m. on Monday, March 4, 28-year-old Ronald Rivers was doing mechanical work on a Ford Escape that had shut down in the Uno Gas Station compound on Youth for the Future Drive when he was approached by a gunman who rode up on him and fired a single shot. The bullet caught Rivers in the face. He was rushed to the Karl Heusner Memorial Hospital and died ten days later when he was removed from life support. Police responded quickly to the incident and managed to detain Mayflower Street resident, 18-year-old Lloyd King, for the shooting.

One Dead One Critical in Roaring Creek Robbery
Police are investigating a robbery that took place in Roaring Creek Village that has left one man dead and another in critical condition. According to police report, sometime around 7:50 p.m. on Tuesday night, April 16, a lone ski mask wearing gunman entered Hyde’s Meat and Grocery Shop and demanded money. While executing the robbery, the gunman fired several shots. 42-year-old Randolph Hyde sustained gunshot wounds over his right eye and on the left side of his chest while 36-year-old Mark Hyde received gunshot injuries to his upper left chest and upper left back. Randolph passed away at 8:15 p.m. while receiving treatment. Mark is in a critical but stable condition. At this point in their investigation, police have not determined the amount of money stolen and no one has been arrested and charged.

Five Months in Prison for Grabbing Woman’s Buttocks
39-year-old Fernando Tun, a laborer and resident of the Gugulung area, appeared before Senior Magistrate Sharon Frazer on Monday, April 15, to face a charge of aggravated assault upon a 28-year-old woman. According to reports, at about 4 p.m. on Thursday, April 11, the woman was in front of Downtown Plaza on Albert Street when Tun grabbed her twice on her buttocks. The woman was offended by Tun’s actions and as a result she reported the incident to police, requesting court action. In court Tun pleaded guilty to the offense, claiming that he was drunk at the time of the incident. He was sentenced to 6 months at the Belize Central Prison for the offense. The maximum sentence for the offense is 3 years in prison.

UDP Chairman readies the troops for Village Council Elections
Every since Party Chairman, Alberto August took the reins of the office he's been moving around the country energizing the party's political machinery, getting it ready for the village council elections.

Lowest Levels of Major Crimes registered in Southern Zone and Dangriga
Hon. John Saldivar (c) and Compol Allen Whylie(r) make presentation to Sr. Superintendent Robert Mariano On March 17, 2013, Minister of National Security, Hon. John Saldivar presented a Certificate of Award and a Cheque of $1,000 to Senior Superintendent Robert Mariano who heads the Southern Zone and is also the Officer Commanding the Dangriga Formation which forms part of the Southern Zone.

National Agriculture and Trade Show Farmer of the Year
The National Agriculture and Trade Show Committee is pleased to announce the winners of this year’s Farmers of the Year 2013:

OAS says Guatemala Will Not Offend Belize at General Assembly
On Tuesday April 16th the Assistant Secretary General of the Organization of American States (OAS), Albert Ramdin, held a press briefing to update the media on activities of the organization in particular, the OAS' General Assembly which will be held in Antigua, Guatemala on June 6th. At the last meeting of the general assembly in Bolivia in February of this year and again in Washington there was an offensive video presented by Guatemala which showed no differentiation in territory between Belize and Guatemala. At the time it was met with great displeasure by Belize's ambassador to the OAS, Nestor Mendez and a formal protest was launched. Belize's Foreign Minister has since reported that if such a video is again presented Belize will be walking out of the meeting.

Government of Belize and CDB launch $12.8M Poverty Alleviation Project
The Ministry of Economic Development, in collaboration with the Caribbean Development Bank (CDB), officially launched a BZD$12.8 million project on Thursday, 11th April, which will finance a number of poverty alleviation projects throughout Belize. The project will be implemented by the Social Investment Fund (SIF).

Rainbow Park in Corozal expanded
The Rainbow Park in Corozal Town is currently undergoing massive renovations thanks to the vision of Corozal Bay Area Representative, Hon. Pablo Marin.

RF&G Adopts Town Clock
The Belize City Council and the insurance company, RF&G officially inaugurated the town clock located on Barrack Road in Belize City on Monday April 15th. The clock was constructed in memory of Scottish doctor, Frederick Gahne by residents of Belize City in 1913.

Solid Waste Consultations begin along the Western Corridor
The Solid Waste Management Authority (SWaMA) within the Ministry of Natural Resources and Agriculture held a public consultation on April 10. The event was held at the Cayo Welcome Center in San Ignacio Town. A similar consultation has been scheduled for Belize City at the Young Women Christian Association YWCA at 6:30 pm on April 18.

Special Envoy Launches Children Sex Abuse Awareness Campaign
Belize’s Special Envoy for Women and Children, Kim Simplis-Barrow, has launched an awareness campaign aimed at reducing the prevalence of sexual abuse against childred. The key instrument in the campaign is a children's book entitled “my body is precious”. The book was written to appeal to students from Infant II to Standard II and an audience made up mostly of this age group gathered at the Bliss Center for the Performing Arts on Monday, April 15, for its official release.

Million Dollar Chocolate Museum for Toledo District
The Toledo District will benefit from a significant economic investment which will create educational and job opportunities for its residents. The Toledo Cacao Growers Association (TCGA) has received a grant of €500,000 or BZ$1,250,000 through the Belize Rural Development Project II. This grant will be used for the construction of the Maya House of Cacao and Chocolate Museum.

Young Bank residents now enjoy potable water
Hon. Godwin Hulse, Minister of Rural Development (2nd from right) and Mr Alberto August (far right) inaugurate the Young Bank water project Residents of Young Bank, a community on the outskirts of Camalote Village in the Cayo District, now enjoy quality, potable water twenty four hours a day thanks to a Social Investment Fund (SIF) and Belize Water Services Limited (BWSL) project, which aims to improve and expand water supply to rural communities in Belize.

Belize City Primary Schools Basketball Competition opens
The 2012-2013 Belize City Primary Schools Basketball Competition opened on Monday April 15, 2013, at Bird’s Isle in Belize City. There are seven (7) girls’ schools and 16 boys’ schools participating in this year’s primary schools basketball competition. The schools in the girls’ competition are Muslim Community, Belize Elementary, Holy Redeemer, St. John Vianney, St. Martin De Porres, Queen Square Anglican and Buttonwood Bay Nazarene. Meanwhile, the schools in the boys’ competition are St. John Vianney, Buttonwood Bay Nazarene, Queen Square Anglican, Belize Elementary, Wesley Upper School, New Horizon Academy, St. Mary’s Primary, St. Luke Methodist, Trinity Methodist, Ephesus SDA, Hummingbird Elementary, Queen Street Baptist, St. Ignatius Primary, Holy Redeemer School, Unity Presbyterian and St. Martin De Porres.

Belmopan Bandits open its lead in Premier League Competition
The Premier League of Belize Closing Season Tournament for 2013 continued over the last weekend with a number of games across the country. On Saturday April 13, out at the Isidoro Beaton Stadium in Belmopan, the defending champions and the current leaders in this year’s competition the Belmopan Bandits blanked FC Belize by the score of 1-0. The only goal of the game was scored by Deon McCaulay in the 61st minute of play. The competition then continued on Sunday April 14, with three more games. At the MCC Grounds here in Belize City, Police United also blanked Verdes FC by the score of 1-0. Devon Makin scored the only goal of the game in the 34th minute of play. Out at the People’s Stadium in Orange Walk Town, Belize Defence Force blasted FC San Felipe Barcelona by the score of 6-0. The goals for the Belize Defence Force were scored by Shane Flores in the 45th minute of play, Harrison Tasher in the 61st, 79th and 90th minutes of play, Jeremy Gentle in the 77th minute of play and Carlton Thomas in the 85th minute of play.

Football Federation calls players to tryout
The Football Federation of Belize in preparation for Gold Cup 2013 has called the following players to camp. According to the FFB, the camp commenced on Tuesday April 16, 2013, at the FFB Headquarters. The players called are: Woodrow West (Belmopan Bandits), Frank Lopez (Belize Defence Force), Darrel Novelo (San Felipe Barcelona), Shane Moody (Marathon FC), Elroy Smith (Vida FC), Ian Gaynair ( Belmopan Bandits), Dalton Eiley (Placencia Assassins), Tyrone Pandy (Belize Defence Force), Cristobal Gilharry (FC Belize), Jermaine Jones (Police United), Bernard Linares (Placencia Assassins), Andres Makin (Police United), Floyd Jones (Belmopan Bandits), Harrison Tasher (Belize Defence Force), Trevor Lennan (Police United), Kalil Velazquez (Belize Defence Force), Everal Trapp (Verdes FC), Keshawn Pech (Police United), Gilroy Thurton (Verdes), Danny Jimenez (Police United), Lennox Castillo (Police United), Deon McCaulay (Belmopan Bandits), Harrison Roaches (Belize Defence Force), Evan Mariano (Police United), Clifton West (San Felipe Barcelona), Jaron Myvette (Brown Bombers), Ashley Torres (Placencia Assassins), Devon Makin (Police United), Luis Torres (Placencia Assassins) and Collin Westby (Placencia Assassins).

Interoffice Basketball to begin next Friday night
The 2013 Interoffice Basketball League Tournament is scheduled to commence on Friday April 26, at the Bird’s Isle in Belize City. This year’s tournament will see the participation of eight elite teams with representation from Belize City and San Pedro Town. The teams participating in this year’s tournament are Department of Youth Services, CYDP, Police, Allied Insurance, Belikin Under Dogs, Alamillas Furniture’s, Digi Cell 4G and the defending champions Tuff “E” Nuff Tours. The sponsors’ Interoffice Basketball League tournament includes Sprite & Belikin, Smart and Brothers Habet Ltd.

Camalote United open on right foot in the Miley Garcia Cayo Softball Competition
The 2013 Cayo District Softball Competition regular season opened on Sunday April 14, at the Joan Garbutt Stadium in Esperanza Village. This year the teams will be playing for the Miley Garcia Softball Trophy, as he is the official sponsor of the Cayo Softball Association’s premier competition. In the first game played, the defending champions Camalote United continued its winning ways when it blasted Belmopan Capital City Emeralds by the score of 16-0. The winning pitcher was Francine Salazar and the losing pitcher was Dana Mae King. In game two, Roaring Creek Grace Kennedy employed the services of young pitcher Shanika Anderson who bested Ontario Rebels and the veteran Kenreen Gillett by the score of 9-3. The competition will continue this coming Sunday April 21, at the softball pitch in Ontario Village. In the first game scheduled for 12:00 midday it will be Las Flores against Camalote United; followed by roaring Creek Grace Kennedy against the Capital City Emeralds and in the final game of the day Esperanza Wolverines will be entertained by Ontario Rebels.

Oceana pays tribute to Marine Conservationist And Calls on all Belizeans to never forget his work, which we must continue
Oceana is saddened by the news of the passing of one of Belize’s first Marine Conservationists, Lionel “Chocolate” Heredia, who was a true Belizean patriot contributing immensely to the protection of marine resources, especially the manatees. In 2012, Oceana presented “Chocolate” its Ocean Hero Award for his outstanding work spanning over five decades as a conservationist when that term had not even become popular or even considered a career field. “We must celebrate the life of our brother Chocolate and always remember him as a role model because even though he has parted this earthly life his works and contribution to this nation remain with us. And it is his work all of us in the conservation community must continue as we stand on the shoulder of this conservation giant,” said Oceana V.P. Audrey Matura-Shepherd. A brief History: Lionel “Chocolate” Heredia spent much of his adult life in and around the sea as a fisherman and later as a tour guide. He built up a healthy respect for the environment, knowing how important conservation was without even knowing what the word meant.

New Market Trends for Belizean Farmers
Belizean consumers regularly use products from Nestle, Kraft Foods and other food imports. These popular products can be found at the dinner tables on the farthest reaches of the country. However; these food products which have attained the highest level in value added form, contain constituents that can be produced by our local farmers.

University of Belize to Present a Wide Range of Research Findings
On Thursday, April 18, students and members of faculty at the University of Belize will be making presentations on a wide range of research topics in the institution’s Third Annual Student Research Conference. The Student Research Conference is being conducted by the Faculty of Management and Social Sciences (FMSS). The topics researched includes the Prevalence and Identification of HIV/AIDS, Risk Factors in Recovering Addicts, The Economic Impact of DFC’s MSME Loan Program on Loan Beneficiaries, Determinants of Risk in the Commercial Banking Center, Facebook’s Impact on Sales on Two Small Belize City Businesses, Texting and English: Factors Affecting Proper Writing at the University of Belize, Factors Contributing to Out District Students’ GPA, among others.

Belize Welcomed Home Her Very Own Yoga Master, Yogi Charu!
The 37 year old yoga practitioner and teacher, Yogi Charu, was born in Belize City and grew up on Prince Street. He was first introduced to yoga at age 15 through his classmate and lifelong friend, Alexander Aguet. By age 16, determined to deepen his yoga practice and his understanding of life through the science and philosophy of yoga; the young Belizean set off on a journey that took him to places like California, Hawaii, India, Hong Kong, Japan, Australia, Germany, Poland, Sweden, several countries in Africa, and New York where he currently resides. More than 20 years after leaving Belize; after years of studying yoga and meditation with adept yogis, after living as an ascetic yogi in the Himalayas, after years of teaching yoga around the world, after making a name for himself as an authentic yoga master; Yogi Charu has returned home to Belize to share his knowledge of yoga with us.

Blogs

Sometimes You Don't Want to Catch & Release - Belize Weddings
One of the wonderful things about being a destination wedding photographer in Belize is that we get to meet all sorts of people, from all over the world, with different lifestyles, jobs and hobbies... These are some awesome wedding photographers in Belize ...

A Passion. A Love.
University of Belize Calabash Caye Field Station -- My Office! :D Great video, worth watchng.

Life in a Banana Republic - Raymond Auxillou Jr., My hero
RAYMOND DENNIS AUXILLOU Jr., my father, was fondly known as “Captain Ray” by the local Reef community of Caye Caulker and his Sail buddies worldwide; “Raymundo the Magician” by some of his oldest & dearest friends who remember his brief early years as a traveling magician; the familiar “RAY” or “DAD” or “Grandpa” as his children and grandchildren referred to him, was 75 at the time of his death, after fighting a valiant battle he eventually lost to Cancer.

Belize Fan Pages Taking A Gamble?
Ok I have to admit this is a bit of a pet peeve for me and I’ve hesitated writing this blog for this same reason. It seems that there are seasons on Facebook where contests of all sorts keep springing up or a new page is hosting a promotion to create awareness. Most of them are really good and I even won an overnight stay from a contest I saw posted on a Facebook page. However this is where it gets a bit sticky. It seems that very few people are aware that the contests or promotions are not in compliance with Facebook rules and they are in danger of getting their page shut down! I myself was ignorant of the rules when I just started with Facebook, I mean how many people actually sit down and read the Terms and Conditions? Unless of course you’re into that sort of thing. So I want to use this post to encourage those who are running contest, promotions, etc or thinking of doing one to take some time to familiarize yourself with the rules. You’ve already put a lot of work, time, energy into your page, probably built some really good connections, have a great fan base etc… are you willing to take a gamble and risk all that?

April 7, 2013 - April 13, 2013 Fishing Report
The second Orvis Saltwater seminar was a huge success with half day of classroom and practical work, provided by Orvis’ Jim Welch. The class was then followed by 3-1/2 days of fishing. Overall the wind slowed down the catch of tarpon but the guests and guides still managed some good fishing for permit and bones by hiding on the west side of the island, as much out of the wind as possible. Brian asked Kristen to marry him on this trip and she said yes! Wow! --Ed

Tacoboy’s 24h SURPRISE party
As of last Monday, the picture below was the only real clue tacoboy about his 24h surprise party and he was baffled by it. As far he knew he was having a party at Victoria House with an international DJ and 900 people on the guest list. Not long after his facebook invite and picture clue went out, Paul was at work and got a call from Maya confirming reservations Cindy had made under Pedro’s Hotel. The cat was a little more out of the bag, now he knew we were flying somewhere and that he had to bring slogger shoes just in case.

International Sources

Blacklisted?
There was an attack on Hostmonster Wordpress installations three days ago, and hostmonster added a lot of IP addresses to a blacklist. I think they used the kitchen sink method to determine who was attacking, because too many folks are having this problem. http://SanPedroDaily.com, http://BelizeNews.com, http://BelizeSearch.com, http://sagahumanesociety.org are among sites hosted by hostmonster, and might be giving you a problem. Of those sites, only the SAGA site is a WordPress installation, so you don't have to be running a wordpress site to have your site be affected if your website is hosted by hostmonster. If you are unable to get onto certain sites because it says your IP is blacklisted, here is why

Travel to Cuba
I have been researching a trip to Cuba and was made aware of the National Lawyers Guild and their links to the travel organization below. I have provided a link here which is literally a mini-counter-intelligence manual as to how the travel restrictions work and how to disrupt and evade them. As a bottom line it appears no matter that even if one is tagged at the airport or by mail later (and the vast majority are NOT anyway), all one really needs to do is request a hearing within 30 days and then Treasury backs off. There will be no hearing, no fine, no nothing. Only suckers and cowards have paid fines and not one single person has ever been actually prosecuted. If confronted one needs only to stand up for their rights and refuse to answer any questions, other than the ones answered on the customs form. You are not required to answer any other questions coming back into the U.S. other than what is on that form -- period.

Caithness pupils to work in Belize rainforest
Caithness pupils are to work with the Royal Botanic Gardens Edinburgh as part of efforts to conserve plants and habitats in Belize. The teenagers from Wick High School will spend four weeks in the Central American country this summer. The trip will involve staying at Las Cuevas in the Chiquibul rainforest. More than 3,700 plants have been recorded in Belize and hundreds of other species are thought to remain undiscovered. The country's forests also provide habitat for big cats such as ocelot and jaguar. Teacher Chris Aitken, who will be accompanying the fifth and sixth pupils, said the June trip offered the youngsters an "amazing opportunity".

Cuba and Belize Determined to Promote Bilateral Co-op
The governments of Cuba and Belize expressed their bilateral cooperation during a visit to this capital by Deputy Premier Gaspar Vega, who was received by Vice President José Ramón Machado Ventura. The two officials reviewed the links between their countries and discussed ongoing integration processes in Latin America and the Caribbean. According to an official note, Machado Ventura and Vega, who is also Minister of Natural Resources and Agriculture of Belize, showed satisfaction for the good state of relations and talked about mechanisms like the Caribbean Community and the Community of Latin American and Caribbean States.

Court rescues Belizean coral from offshore oil drillers
The world’s second-largest barrier reef was saved from offshore drilling by activists who successfully sued the government of Belize over the issue. Belize issued contracts to energy companies in 2004 and 2007 that allowed them to drill around the Mesoamerican Barrier Reef. But the government officials awarded the contracts to inexperienced drillers and didn’t bother studying the environmental impacts first. That’s actually kind of understandable: I mean, what could go wrong? Oceana and two other nonprofits sued the government over the contracts. They won the lawsuit this week in Belize’s Supreme Court.

Offshore Oil Drilling Stopped in Belize - WSJ.com
Yesterday, Belize's Supreme Court declared offshore drilling contracts issued by the Government of Belize (in 2004 and 2007) null and void, providing a dramatic and potentially definitive setback to The Government of Belize and the petroleum prospecting companies issued the contracts.

Inspired Travel: The Great Blue Hole
If you’re an avid scuba diver or adventure junkie, you’ve probably heard of, or maybe even experienced the Great Blue Hole in the Belize Barrier Reef (an UNESCO World Heritage Site). Around 10,000 years ago, the hole’s roof collapsed to reveal the previously concealed cave below. Measuring at around 1,000 feet in diameter (and around 412 feet deep), the cave sits in the Lighthouse Reef and it is close to a perfect circle.

How an Unexpected Delay Led to a Wonderful Trip to San Ignacio, Belize
Sometimes, when it seems like things are going from bad to worst, all you gotta do is hang in there for a bit until the sun comes out again. After barely being allowed into Belize, we were able to get to the insurance office on time. At 3:00p.m. we were still harboring hopes that we’d be able to get down to Belize City in time to catch the 4:30p.m. Water Taxi to Caye Caulker. “So, Insurance Guy, how far are we from Belize city?” Insurance Guy, who looked suspiciously Guatemalan, responded in perfect Belizean-accented English: Oh, about 2… maybe 2 and a half hours.” Our hopes dashed, I mentally made a note to check the wireless signal on my Guatemalan Tigo modem when the vehicle’s paperwork was complete.

The Mayans the Mass and Me
While in Belize we had the chance to visit some Mayan ruins. I climbed to the top of the main pyramid in Caracol and sitting up there on a beautiful day in April, the jungle birds crying and the jungle trees and neatly trimmed lawned–I imagined the priests offering their sacrifices of grain and human lives to their sky gods. It was a different scene then. The forests all cut down, the barbaric rites continued in fear and desperation as famine and starvation loomed. The critics of Catholicism–both Protestant and atheist–might say, “Geesh, it’s not really any different than what you do is it Father?” They’d argue, “Don’t you also get dressed up and ascend to the heights of the holy place where you offer a sacrifice of bread and blood? Don’t you say this is the Body of Christ? Aren’t you making the same pagan sacrifices of body and blood and grain to the sky god hoping that he will bring you prosperity and peace?” The Protestant will turn away in horror at the idea that Catholicism is simply brutal paganism warmed up and the atheistic materialist will turn away in ridicule and disgust that we still believe such superstitious ideas and practice such crude religious magic.


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