More News: Scroll up from here
COLA And Parents Of 13 Dead Newborns Demand Answers From GOB
The death of 13 babies at the hands of the nation’s referral hospital, in the Neonatal Intensive Care Unit, has outraged many Belizeans particularly the parents of the newborns. As the days go by and no one is held responsible for the untimely death of the infants, the clamor for justice intensifies. And today Citizens Organized for Liberty through Action, COLA, accompanied by the parents of the victims and other organizations took their cries for justice to the streets of the Old Capital as they held a peaceful demonstration in front of the Karl Huesner Memorial Hospital. Although the crowd was small the message carried out was huge. Irvin Aragon has the story.
Irvin Aragon – Reporting
“Justice” was the word resounding in the streets of the old capital today, particularly in front of the Karl Huesner Memorial Hospital, as Belizeans gathered in unison fighting for what they believe in, that someone be held responsible for the untimely death of 13 babies.
Imer Hernandez Awarded Millions Of Dollars In Contracts
Imer Hernandez is back on the news tonight but it’s not because he gave an interview to the media and cleared his name from the San Antonio Road scandal. By now the nephew of the Deputy Prime Minster is no stranger to the Belizean public since he has been making headlines for the past two weeks. Hernandez’s story began when documents, showing that he was paid close to $200,000 for works conducted on San Antonio Road Orange Walk, were released by the media when in reality the work is yet to be executed. The Prime Minster came out in Hernandez’s defense claiming that the contract awarded to Imer Development Company Limited for the refurbishing of San Antonio Road was cancelled and the money was used to pay for works conducted in the Otro Benque Area.
But despite the fact that the Prime Minister has not been able to confirm why Hernandez was paid out under the San Antonio Road contract, the DPM’s nephew has been awarded several other contracts by the Government. Reports are that apart from winning a six million dollars contract to upgrade the Belize City Municipal Airstrip, Hernandez was also awarded the contract to refurbish the Belmopan Market.
Keron Tzul Receives Award For Logo Competition
Today the faculty and staff of Bishop Martin High School had much to celebrate as Keron Tzul, the forth form student who won the Ministry of Energy, Science & Technology and Public Utilities logo competition, was presented with his winning prizes this morning. On hand for the special ceremonies was CEO for the Ministry of Energy, Science & Technology and Public Utilities Dr. Colin Young who was accompanied by Deputy Prime Minister Gaspar Vega and Representative of Belize Telemedia Ltd, Erwin Aragon.
For winning the logo competition Tzul was bestowed $500.00 cash and an Ipod while the Bishop Martin High School received a $1,000 and a video projector courtesy of Belize Telemedia Limited.
Jaime Cardenas Convicted Of Dangerous Harm
A jury of nine members convicted Jaime Cardenas for the offence of dangerous harm in the Orange Walk Supreme Court yesterday. Cardenas was tried before Honorable Justice Herbert Lord for the May 2009 stabbing of Rene Escarraga in his upper abdomen at a bus stop in Orange Walk Town. Escarraga would have lost his life without medical intervention.
The Crown was represented by Counsels Shanice Lovell and Sabita Maharaj and the accused was represented by attorney Dickie Bradley. Sentencing has been adjourned to June twenty-seventh.
And The Awards For BMHS Keep Rolling In
In the Month of March Bishop Martin High School was the only High School from the Orange Walk District to enter the National Sagicor Visionaries Challenge. On March 20th, the high school’s Science Group earned a spot at the Regional Competition that took place in Barbados from the 12th to the 13th of April with their Coconut for life project. After facing off high school giants from Jamaica, Trinidad and Tobago, Dominica, Barbados and other institutions, Bishop Martin High School was named the champions of the Regional Competition making Belize proud.
Today representatives of Sagicor, the Ministry of Education and the Ministry of Energy, Science & Technology and Public Utilities visited the school where they announced the culmination of the Sagicor Visionaries Challenge that started almost a year ago with the presentation of prizes to the regional winners.
Religious Leaders And COLA Oppose Gender Policy
The revised National Gender Policy 2013 launched by the Women’s Commission, continues to make headlines tonight and it’s not in a positive way. While the policy address issues of gender inequality, some of its contents do not sit quite well with the larger community, specifically the religious sector. As previously mentioned, back in March, Cabinet approved the removal of one particular section of the policy which stated “Amend existing legislation to legalize and regulate the sex work industry.” In all fairness the Women’s Commission has stated that the statement was a complete oversight and should have been omitted, meaning that it should not have been introduced in the final draft of the policy. And while that particular section of the policy has been removed, there is one paragraph that continues to raise concern and cause controversy. After reviewing a section of the policy entitled “Respect for Diversity” which partly states “the customary religious and cultural practices must be subject to the right of equality”, religious leaders concluded that the statement pushes an agenda of inclusion for homosexuals. Based on the concerns raised, Cabinet agreed to amend the section by removing the final sentence of the paragraph which reads: “... and customary religious and cultural practices must be subject to the right of equality”. But even with the amendment, churches and other interested party’s continue to be in disapproval of the Gender Policy.
PUP Recommends Complete Withdrawal Of Gender Policy
Jumping ahead of the Prime Minister is P.U.P Party Leader Hon. Francis Fonseca and his Deputy Party Leader Julius Espat who met with church leaders of the Cayo District, particularly those representing Belmopan and surrounding communities, yesterday. Following presentations from Pastors Scott Stirm and Louis Wade, Fonseca addressed the gathering and in sight of the concerns raised by the church leaders, the PUP made several recommendations to the Government of Belize. For one, the PUP recommends a complete withdrawal of the Revised National Gender Policy in its current form in order to preserve support for any Gender Policy moving forward.
To allow the Church Community and their representatives to undertake a full and comprehensive review of the Policy in its current form and make recommendations for refining and revising the Policy and only after this has taken place should the policy be re-tabled for Cabinet and National Assembly for approval.
The Revised National Gender Policy 2013 has some very good objectives and aspirations which all Belizeans can and should support but our Church Community must be given every opportunity to offer their views on the Policy if it is to have any chance of forming the basis for meaningful and effective change in our society, according to the PUP.
P.M Meets With BNTU, No Agreement Reached On Gender Policy
While the Prime Minster finds nothing wrong with the policy, the Belize National Teachers Union does. In a release issued on June 4th the BNTU expressed great concern for the implications the policy can undertake, questioned if the document was being implemented in order to comply with conditions for foreign aid and most importantly called on Government to put an immediate halt to any further action on the gender policy.
This morning the Prime Minister met with the hierarchy of the BNTU in Belize City where several issues in reference to the Gender Policy were laid on the table. This afternoon when we spoke to President of the BNTU Luke Palacio, he told us that the teachers union will not provide any interviews regarding the meeting until further consultations are held.
Accused Murderer Sentenced To Six Years For Firearm Charges
Twenty-seven year old Cecil Castillo, also known as “sadiki”, who is remanded on a charge of murder, was found guilty of kept prohibited firearm and kept ammunition without a gun license today by Senior Magistrate Sharon Fraser.
He was sentenced to 6 years for the firearm, a shotgun he made from a metal pipe. He was sentenced to 3 years for a 16 gauge cartridge which was in the shotgun.
Senior magistrate Fraser stipulated that the sentences are to run concurrently, so Castillo will serve 6 years.
Castillo was busted with the firearm shortly after 9 p.m. on May 4, 2010. He was standing on Antelope Street Extension when a police mobile patrol approached him. When he saw the police he threw an object over a fence into a yard.
The police retrieved the object and it was a firearm that resembled a shotgun. The firearm had a 16 gauge cartridge in it. At the trial the firearms examiner, Orlando Vera, testified that the firearm could fire.
Castillo testified and denied that he threw the firearm over the fence. Last year Castillo was convicted of keeping a prohibited firearm, a shotgun he made while he was in prison, which was found in his cell in the Tango 9 section. He was sentenced to 2 years for that offence.
Consultant Recommends National Association for Market Vendors
There have been numerous stories on the news about the differences between various councils and market vendors but today a workshop was held in Belmopan to break down that communication barrier. The workshop is on Market Management in Belize and is being conducted by the Department of Local Government and Rural Development through the Belize Rural Development Project 2. For the past three months there was a consultant in the country and he is Michael Burchell, a technical support officer for the European Union. Burchell’s role was to review the market system in Belize and present his finding which was done today. According to the Minister of Labor, Local Government and Rural Development, Senator Godwin Hulse, the aim of the workshop is to increase the management and administrative capacities of the regulatory authorities overseeing markets in Belize.
HON. GODWIN HULSE
“Generally, the whole idea is to ensure that we improve the management of the market; so, when people bring their produce, particularly from the rural areas, there is a place for them to display them, there’s some security, there’s water, it’s hygienic and then you can create the dynamism of a market place where people come and buy and haggle and go and come but this is particularly to enhance the management, the physical management of the infrastructure, accountability for the resources and that sort of thing.”
COLA stages demonstration against KHMH
This morning a contingent of about 175 Belizeans rallied by Citizens Organized for Liberty through Action (COLA) took off from in front of the Karl Heusner Memorial Hospital (KHMH), publicly displaying their dissatisfaction with its investigation of the deaths of 13 premature babies. Seven of those deaths are linked...
Ministry of Health inaugurates new training for Epidemiologists
Even while COLA supporters were calling for their heads across town, representatives of the Ministry of Health and partners Pan American Health Organization (PAHO) and the Caribbean Public Health Agency (CPHA) were meeting to inaugurate a new cohort of training for epidemiologists to catch bugs like the deadly Enterobacter...
OAS adopts Inter-American Conventions
Yesterday, the General Assembly of the OAS adopted the Inter-American Convention against Racism, Racial Discrimination and Related Forms of Intolerance, as well as the Inter-American Convention against All Forms of Discrimination and Intolerance. Both documents were formerly negotiated and subsequently drafted and are now open for the member states...
Audrey Matura Shepherd says the Constitution already defines descrimination
Meanwhile, the 2013 Revised National Gender Policy continues to be topic of major discussion. The current government is standing its grounds when it comes to the Gender Policy. Despite disagreement over key issues on gender identity and sexual orientation topics named with the manual; Prime Minister, the Hon. Dean...
Denys Barrow presents Government’s case on oil injunction
Chief Justice Kenneth Benjamin heard arguments as to why the Government should be granted a stay of an injunction handed down by Justice Oswell Legall in his April judgment declaring the production sharing agreements of certain oil companies unlawful, null and void and stopping the Minister from acting on...
Mike Singh clarifies Belize Representation at Regional Summit
Some have questioned why Belize had no representation at a regional summit between business leaders of CARICOM and Central America in Guatemala and wondered whether we have been left behind as the fabled link between the two. CEO in the Ministry of Trade Mike Singh and the Prime Minister...
Judge denies Michael Coye bail to leave prison pending appeal
At a re-trial conducted in July last year, 66 year old Michael Coye and his daughter Melonie were convicted of money laundering under the Money Laundering and Terrorism Act and jailed for 3 years, as well as fined 25 thousand dollars. They were accused of running a scheme under...
Guatemalan Man shot in Chiquibul
Last week, the Friends of Conservation and Development issued a release highligthing the pressures the that Chiquibul Forest Reserve is under as Guatemalan poachers continue to infringe on the natural resources in the area. Because of these infringements, there has been an increase in patrols in the area and by extension, an increase in contact between the patrols and Guatemalans who make their way into Belizean territory.
Another such encounter has left a Guatemalan man injured and receiving treatment at the Western Regional Hospital. Authorities report that at around 2:00 p.m. on Monday, June 3rd, BDF officers were on patrol, in they Chiquibul Forest Reserve some two miles within Belizean territory. During the patrol they officers discovered a plantation and a thatch structure in the Caballo Camp area. While securing the area, a Hispanic man was seen approaching on a brown horse with a firearm. He was ordered to stop; however, the man ran into the nearby bushes. Two warning shots were fired and the man turned around and returned several shots at the patrol. As a result, the patrol returned fire injuring the man. First aid assistance was rendered to the man, who was identified as 27-year-old Edgar Alexander Sacasa, a Guatemalan of Picalito Village. He was escorted out of the area but due to the terrain and weather conditions, they were unable to transport him to a medical institution until Tuesday morning when he was taken to the Western Regional Hospital. He is listed in stable condition and is under Police guard.
Minister of State in the Ministry of Finance and Economic Development, Hon. Santiago Castillo, is recovering after suffering a nasty spill during a routine ride from Belize City to Hattieville and back. On Tuesday morning, Hon. Castillo was returning into Belize City from Hattieville along with a group of about 20 riders in a sprint when his front wheel inadvertently touched the rear wheel of another cyclist causing him to fall off his bicycle.
As a result of the fall he suffered a broken left clavicle, broken fingers on his left hand and rib which had him undergo surgery, which was successful.
Castillo, who is the manager of Team Santino, was performing a routine cycling workout with about twenty riders.
Oceana Stopping Progress?
Oceana and the Government of Belize were back in court on Wednesday, June 5th, as GOB tries to have a stay of execution on an injunction which was granted to Oceana on May 16th. The injunction was given by Justice Oswell Legall along with a declaration that contracts signed in 2004 and 2007 were unlawful and void. He also ruled that before entering into agreements or contracts which authorize oil exploration and seismic surveys that environmental impact assessments are required. An injunction was then granted restraining the Minister of Natural Resources from executing the PSA’s. The only companies which will be affected by the ruling are Princess Petroleum Limited and Providence Energy Belize Limited, which have contracts that extend to October 2015.
In speaking with Senior Counsel Denys Barrow, who is representing the Government, he explained that at the beginning of the case, Oceana had applied to have evidence of an expert on petroleum admitted into the court proceedings. The Chief Justice, Kenneth Benjamin ruled against that, however, since there was no need for any expert’s opinion at this juncture since the substantive case had already been heard and a ruling done on it. At the end of that first phase, Oceana was ordered to pay costs of the legal proceedings to the Government.
Mayor Bradley pitches $10 Million Proposal to UNICEF
Mayor Bradley and Christine Norton Visit residents of Port Loyola
On Tuesday, June 4th, Mayor Darrel Bradley took Christine Norton, Country Representative for UNICEF, and Mary Vasquez, Executive Director of Restore Belize, on a tour of Southside Belize City. The Mayor intends to apply for funding from UNICEF for a project aimed at improving the infrastructure and quality of life for residents of Southside Belize City, specifically, the Port Loyola Area.
Bail denied to 66-year-old Michael Coye
In late July of 2012, two members of the Coye Family and with two of their employees were convicted of money laundering under the Money Laundering and Terrorism Act and while the employees escaped jail time, Melanie Coye and her father, 66-year-old Michael Coye were convicted and sentenced to jail for 3 years. They were additionally fined $23,000. They have since appealed the case but remain in jail.
Since then, Michael Coye has been seeking bail. On Tuesday June 4th, Justice Samuel Awich ruled on his application and denied him bail. The ruling was handed down at a special sitting of the Court of Appeals
Drunk Man shot in San Ignacio
A male was seen with gunshot wounds at about 9:17 pm on Sunday in San Ignacio Town. The male was observed to be suffering from gun shots to both his right and left knee and right upper arm.
Investigations revealed that the recipient of the gun shots was Rupert Roland, 24, who had visited Roses Chinese Store and Restaurant in San Ignacio Town on the George Price Highway. The security guard at that establishment had reacted with his licensed 9 mm pistol at the aggressive moves of an inebriated Roland. The security guard had received a complaint that Roland was causing annoyance to customers at the Restaurant.
Police visited the scene of the shooting and recovered four expended shells and a 9 mm pistol from the security officer.
Roland, who is a tire repairman by trade, was kept at the San Ignacio Hospital for observation. He was discharged from the Hospital on Tuesday.
Father acquitted of Carnal Knowledge of his 12 year-old Daughter
On June 3rd, a 40-year-old man of Punta Gorda walked out of the Supreme Court of Belize a free man after his daughter refused to testify against him in a case of carnal knowledge.
The teenaged girl, 14, took the stand, pointed out to the man in the dock as the accused and her father who had been having sexual intercourse with her on several occasions from in February 2010 until April 2011. She, however, refused to give evidence to assist the prosecution's case to prove the charge.
While on the stand, prosecutor Sheneiza Smith asked her about the two dates she can remember her father having sex with her. The child said she just did not remember those dates.
Acquitted of Theft
On Tuesday, June 4th, 38-year-old Carmita Middleton, who was employed as a receptionist at International Privacy Cooperation, was found not guilty of 5 counts of theft. The charges stemmed back from 2008 when she was working with Robert Bandfield, the sole owner of IPC. This acquittal came before Justice Adolph Lucas in the Supreme Court.
Pharmacist held up at Gun Point in Cayo
At about 7:00 pm last Friday, a pharmacist was held up at gun point in Santa Elena Town, Cayo. Thankfully the pharmacist was able to survive this incident.
Codd’s Pharmacy is located on George Price Highway in Santa Elena Town. A male of Hispanic descent, dressed in dark blue jeans pants and a black sleeveless undershirt entered the drug store through its main door and was clever enough to order Amoxicillin (an antibiotic). It was when the 30-year-old female pharmacist turned around to deliver the medication, that the invader pointed a .38 black in color weapon at her and demanded money. Fearing for her life, the pharmacist handed over $887 in cash. The armed criminal then made good his escape. At this time, police are investigating this incident.
Students turn Robbery into Murder in Belmopan
Belmopan have arrested four male students, two aged 19 and 18 year old and a 15 year old after a robbery and murder in Belmopan.
The two eldesrwere arraigned in Belmopan Magistrate court where they were read charges of murder.Police report that they visited La Chosa Bar located in Belmopan City at 12:05 on Sunday morning where they found 43- year-old Isabel Antonio Balona suffering from a gunshot to the left side of his head and 50-year-old Manuel Aguino with a gunshot to the right leg. Investigations revealed that as the proprietor of the bar, Joshua Lopez, was closing down the establishment, four persons armed with firearms and dressed in long sleeved black shirts, black pants, gloves and masks entered the business place demanding money. The owner handed over his wallet ,which contained 600 dollars in cash. The men then proceeded to loot the cash register and took 3,000 dollars in cash.
Upon seeing the crime in progress both Ballona and Aguino intervened during which the robbers fired several shots at them killing Ballona and injuring Aguino. The robbers then made their escape in Lopez's white Chevy Prizm car bearing license plates BMP-3475.
Inspiration Telethon raises over $514K
Mrs. Kim Simplis-Barrow, Special Envoy for Women and Children and Global Ambassador to Special Olympics, hosted a telethon to raise funds for a state of the art Inspiration Center that will cater specifically for children with disabilities and special needs on Saturday, June 1st. She set a target of $500,000 and once again Belizean generosity proved to be inspiring.
The Great Blue Hole Nominated for “8th Wonder of The World” Competition - Voting Now Open Through September 30
The Belize Tourism Board announces that it has entered “The Great Blue Hole” into VirtualTourist.com’s quest to crown the ‘8th Wonder of the World.’ “Visible from outer space & more than 1000 ft in diameter & 412 ft deep, the Great Blue Hole is a breathtakingly grandiose sinkhole located 43 miles off the coast of Belize, known as a diver’s mecca.” Public voting is now open at VirtualTourist.com, a leading travel research website and community that is part of the TripAdvisor Media Group.
Alyssa Carnegie, BTB’s Marketing Director, commented, “We decided to nominate the Great Blue Hole for the “8th Wonder of the World” competition simply because it is an amazing natural site, unlike any other in the world. We want to share Belize’s phenomenon with the rest of the world. As Belizeans, I know that we are all extremely proud of this natural site and so we want to encourage everyone to vote daily for the Great Blue Hole. We know that it is a “Wonder of the World,” and now we want it to officially hold that title.”
With numerous Tourism Boards, Chambers of Commerce and Visitor Bureaus sending in a nomination, the public is asked to vote for Belize out of the more than 200 submissions. Voters can visit www.virtualtourist.com to vote for the Great Blue Hole and have until September 30 to do so. The wonder with the most votes will be crowned the winner. The winner will be featured in a national broadcast TV segment on a popular syndicated program, as well as receive a massive media relations campaign push from VirtualTourist.
What’s COLA’s Agenda
Geovanni Brackett’s brain must have been an egg batter as he held his umpteenth press conference on Tuesday, June 4th. He was not burning any OAS flags or was he claiming on anti-Guatemala rhetoric; he did not threaten to light himself on fire or did he pretend to be a legal expert. This time around, he chose to be the clarion against the Karl Heusner Memorial Hospital in the deaths of 7 Neonates as a result of a bacterial infection.
No Cruise Tourism at Crawl Caye - NCL exploring Other Options
Prime Minister Barrow announced on Wednesday, June 5th, that Cabinet had informed Norwegian Cruise Line (NCL) that “In the form in which it was being proposed, Crawl Caye as a site for cruise tourism development will not work”.
Government upholding Respect for Diversity of All Types
On Tuesday, May 28th, Cabinet announced that it would make amendments to the Revised National Gender Policy 2013 in response to concerns raised by church leaders. One of the guiding principles of the document reads:
A New NICU for KHMH following Baby Deaths
The Karl Heusner Memorial Hospital (KHMH) held a press conference on Thursday, May 30th, to give an update on its investigation into an outbreak in the Neonatal Intensive Care Unit and the medical professionals’ response to that outbreak that caused numerous neonatal fatalities.
At this point in the investigation, Chairman of the Board of Directors of the KHMH, Chandra Nisbet-Cansino, believes that no individual could be blamed for the unfortunate incident. She said, “I'm not saying nobody's head will roll but nobody's head is rolling at this time.” Cansino elaborated, “We have had detailed discussions with the head of the Pediatric Unit and their response was really timely, they did what they were suppose to do and, when they were supposed to do it.” Director of Medical Services at the KHMH, Dr. Adrian Coye, explained his team’s response. He said, “Around the tenth of May it was recognized that a baby became unwell and this baby was screened and cultures did not show any positivity for any organism and the baby died as a result of sepsis.” This was alarming because there was no positivity for any organism. No new patients were admitted into the Neonatal Intensive Care Unit after that day because, according to Dr. Coye, “It was recognized by the clinical team that babies were becoming septic and becoming unwell very quickly.” After speaking with the head of Infection Control at the hospital, they decided to make changes to the antibiotics being used and close the unit to new patients. Dr. Coye said it would not have made sense to close the unit and move the patients since they were already in a controlled environment. They then restricted visitations and emphasized the wearing of gloves, proper hand washing and other sanitation measures. Despite the continued antibiotic changes, seven babies died as a result of the outbreak.
Montejo out in the Cold
Collet Montejo, who is the PUP’s candidate in Cayo Central, remains shell-shocked as the Area Representative, Hon. Rene Montero keeps on delivering the villages in his constituency. The last village he had to be a witness to as it became UDP for the first time was Selena. Montejo looked on as the counting was taking place and he murmured “I can’t believe this is happening to me”. Well, it did happen. Somehow, Montejo thought that he would simply show up in the village and the people would vote for his PUP slate.
Amidst the Flack
Considering how comparatively small our country is, it is amazing how many burning political topics can surface in a just few weeks! I mean, if one had afforded the time to keep pace with the headlines on all news outlets since the beginning of May, one would have noted that there was ample material for journalists to sample, digest and move on to another appetizing topic without breaking stride. Of course, the delight at Channel Fox could not be masked, and even in instances where there was no drama, they went to great lengths to fashion sensationalism with innuendos; in high pitch too, to boot!
Belize City Primary Schools Volleyball Competition heats up at the Bird’s Isle
The 2012-2013 Belize City Primary Schools Volleyball Competition continues at the Bird’s Isle with a number of games in both the girls and boys competitions daily.
The competition continued on Tuesday, June 4th, with four games on the schedule. In the girls’ game, it was Holy Redeemer School winning over Trinity Methodist School by the score of 25-5 and 25-15. In the first of three boys’ games played, Holy Redeemer School defeated Trinity Methodist School by the score of 25-9 and 25-15. In game two, it was Wesley Upper School winning over Queen Square Anglican School by the score of 25-18 and 25-18. In the final game of the day, All Saints’ Anglican School defeated St. John’s Primary School by the score of 25-21 and 25-16.
On Monday, June 3rd, in girls’ competition, St. John’s Primary School defeated St. Martin’s De Porres School by the score of 25-11 and 25-19. In the first of two games in the boys’ competition, Trinity Methodist School defeated St. John’s Primary School by the score of 25-22 and 25-13. And in the final game of the day, St. Martin’s De Porres School defeated All Saints’ Anglican School by the score of 26-24 and 25-20.
Tuff “E” Nuff Top Seed in Interoffice Basketball Playoff
The regular season of the Interoffice Basketball League competition came to an end on Saturday, June 1st, 2013, at the Bird’s Isle with two games on the schedule.
In the first game played, Tuff “E” Nuff defeated Police by the score of 100-85. The top scorers for Tuff “E” Nuff were Ashton Edwards with 39 points, 9 rebounds, 6 assists and 3 steals; Farron Louriano with 18 points, 7 rebounds, 3 assists and a steal; and Tyrone Edwards with 12 points, 6 rebounds, 9 assists and 3 steals. Meanwhile, the top scorers for the Police were Linton Broaster with 30 points, 4 rebounds and 5 steals; Orlando Bowen with 18 points, and 6 rebounds; and Shane Rosales with 12 points, 3 rebounds, 6 assists and 2 steals.
In game two, it was “No Limit” edged CYDP by the score of 73-72. The top scorers for “No Limit” were Jacob Leslie with 27 points, 1 rebound and 2 assists; and Greg Rudon with 21 points, 10 rebounds, and 2 assists. For CYDP, the top scorers were Bernard Felix with 20 points, 8 rebounds, 4 assists and a steal; and Lincey Lopez with 13 points, and 3 rebounds.
Cyclists are now entitled to Cross Country prizes
The National Anti-Doping Organisation of Belize has informed the Interim Cycling Committee and the Belize Olympic and Commonwealth Games Association that it has now received the results of the five (5) Anti-Doping Samples collected at the conclusion of the 85th Annual Holy Saturday Cross Country Cycling Classic.
The samples were analysed by the scientists at the UCLA Olympic Lab in Los Angeles, California, USA, a WADA certified lab. The samples were analysed for Erythropoietic Proteins and Proteins by Electrophoresis (EPO), Anabolic agents by mass spectrometry, anti-estrogenic agents and related substances by mass spectrometry, diuretics and masking agents by mass spectrometry, Beta-2 agonists by mass spectrometry, glucocorticosteriods by mass spectrometry, stimulants by mass spectrometry and immunoassay, narcotics by mass spectrometry and immunoassay, hormones and related substances (hCG) by mass spectrometry and immunoassay and drugs abuse by mass spectrometry and immunoassay.
The certifying scientists have certified and confirmed that all samples are negative and have reported the results to the World Anti-Doping Agency (WADA) via ADAMS.
With the results now in hands the National Anti-Doping Organisation of Belize has given the go-ahead to the Interim Cycling Committee to proceeds with the presentation of awards for the 85th Annual Holy Saturday Cross Country Cycling Classic.
UB Jaguar maintain Lead in Rural Softball Competition
The Belize Rural Softball Competition continued on Sunday, June 2nd, 2013, out in Ladyville with four games on the schedule.
In the first game played, Lord’s Bank Sunrise defeated Ladyville Rising Star by the score of 12-1. The winning pitcher was Alma Gabourel and the losing pitcher was Sherett Williams.
In game two, it was UB Jaguars, who with the 20-3 win over Arrows Reloaded, maintained its undefeated record in 2013 Belize Rural Softball Competition. The winning pitcher for the UB Jaguars was Herlette Clarke and the loss was charged to Christine Bracket.
In the third game of the afternoon, Mel’s United won handily over St. Paul’s Bank by the score of 12-5. Annette Morey picked up the win for Mel’s United and Jacqueline Cassasola was charged with the loss.
In the final game of the afternoon, it was Easy Does It winning over Village Gyal by the score of 11-1. The veteran, Margaret Hendy was the winning pitcher and the losing pitcher was Angie Tucker.
The competition will continue this coming Sunday, June 9th with four more games on the schedule. All games will be played out in Rancho Dolores with the first game scheduled to commence at 9:00 am. In game one, it will be Village Gyal, the home team going up against Mel’s United. In game two, it will be Lord’s Bank Sunrise against UB Jaguars, followed by Arrows Reloaded against Easy Does It of Flowers Bank. In the final game of the day it will be St. Paul’s against Buttercup.
Chilean Olympic Committee makes bid for 18th Pan Am Games
Mr. Neven Llic President of Chilean Olympic Committee and members of the Belize Olympic and Commonwealth Games Association at the bid presentation
The President of the Chilean Olympic Committee Neven Llic along with his team that consisted of Jaime Agliati, Rodrigo Moreno and. Edwardo Valenvuela arrived in Belize on Friday, May 31st, 2013 and left the country on Saturday, June 1st.
The sole purpose of their trip was to present their bid to host the 18th Pan American Games scheduled for 2019 to the members of the Belize Olympic and Commonwealth Games Association. The city that is vying for the bid to host the 2019 Pan American Games is the capital, Santiago. The bid and showcase as displayed by the Chilean Olympic Committee was very impressive.
Other countries that are also bidding to host the 18th Pan American Games include the Venezuela, Argentina and Peru.
The President of the Chilean Olympic Committee also met with Minister of State with direct responsibilities for youth and sports the Hon. Herman Longsworth.
Ride Across Belize 2013 Reaches another Milestone
Riders arriving in Santa Elena, Cayo last Thursday
Participants in the Ride Across Belize 2013 arrived shortly after 11:00 am at the Social Security Branch Office in Santa Elena Town, Cayo last Thursday where they were given a welcoming reception. The staff of Social Security were very helpful in ensuring that the riders were fed and given enough fluid after their strenuous ride from Belize City
“Beans & Rice & Jesus Christ” by Barbara McNab- Grinage is the cook book that should be on the reading list of all Belizeans with appreciation for local traditions. Barbara McNab- Grinage left Belize for the United States many years ago when she was 15-years-old. However, she never forgot her Belizean heritage and she certainly did not leave her appetite for Belizean food. In her effort to share the food she loves with people from all over the world, this first time author hit the ball out of the park by seasoning her recipes with stories of her childhood in Belize.
New Board and Advisory Council for Duke of Edinburgh’s Award in Belize
A new board and advisory council for the Duke of Edinburgh’s Award were formed last Saturday in San Ignacio Town. The event brought participants from as far away as Belize City and Dangriga, who met at dusk at the Library in San Ignacio Town and to form new partnerships in the benefit of young people.
Social Security celebrates 32 Years of Operations
Olivia Dakers, Branch Manager for the Social Security Office in Santa Elena Town, Cayo
Social Security celebrated its 32 years of existence last Friday. As part of this year’s observance, the branch Office of Social Security in Santa Elena Town in Cayo held a customer’s appreciation day, where a variety of information was displayed on the benefits under the Social Security Scheme.
Oil discovered in Orange Walk
Maranco Energy Belize Limited has struck oil at its South Canal Bank #1 exploration well in the Orange Walk District.
The company made the discovery during routine exploratory drilling in their concession zone on Sunday, March 30.
A Ministry of Energy press release describes the find as “encouraging”, but underscored the need for further testing to determine if the oil is in commercial quantities.
Chief Executive Officer of the ministry, Dr. Colin Young, explained that Geology and Petroleum Department personnel are on site and are closely monitoring the situation. Young added that there have been previous oil discoveries in the north, but the amounts were below commercial quantities. The Ministry is expected to give a public update on the testing in two weeks.
Maranco Energy Belize Limited is owned by Maranco LLC of Carlestown, Nevis, West Indies and has its headquarters at Iguana Creek in Spanish Lookout. It is an affiliate of PR Marriott Drilling Limited, a company established in 1947 by the Marriott family of the UK.
Four men charged for special constable’s murder
Four men accused of shooting and killing 36-year-old Police Special Constable Bertchel Ramirez on Tuesday night, are scheduled to be arraigned in the Belmopan Magistrate’s Court tomorrow, Friday, Belmopan police confirmed.
Police revealed today that they have apprehended four suspects, who were taken to San Ignacio for an identification parade.
Ramirez, a six-year police veteran attached to Belmopan area and described by on of his superiors as a dedicated officer, was ambushed and killed near the home of his girlfriend’s father’s in an area of Roaring Creek Village known as Another World.
Ramirez received gunshot wounds to his head, body and legs.
Neighbours told reporters that they heard between 12 and 15 shots.
National Stadium partially accessible
Belizean athletes may soon be allowed limited access to certain parts of the Marion Jones Sporting Complex, to be renamed the National Stadium, even though the facility won’t be complete and ready until the end of the year.
Minister of State with responsibility for sports, Hon. Herman Longsworth made the announcement at a consultation for a national sports policy at the Belize Biltmore Plaza Hotel on Wednesday, April 3.
The entire project will cost $30 million, whenever it is finally completed, and the Bolivarian Republic of Venezuela has chipped in handsomely, contributing $2 million towards its completion.
For now, Longsworth said the public may be allowed some access to those parts of the facility which have been completed. These include the football pitch, which was completely redone at a cost of $200,000.
BTV gets OAS support for weekend border trek
The Organization of American States representative will accompany the Belize Territorial Volunteers as they clear the borderline between Dolores village and Gracias Adios this weekend, BTV leader Will Maheia said Thursday.
The OAS responded to the BTV on Thursday via email, saying that they have requested Mr. Sergio Benitez, director of the Office of the General Secretary of the OAS in the Adjacency Zone, to be present at the locations where the border clearings will take place.
Maheia explained that the BTV has been getting tremendous support from Belizeans in country and abroad, and the OAS’s recognition of their efforts has certainly bolstered the morale of all the volunteers.
Maheia added that prior to the OAS giving their support, 100 volunteers had pledged to be a part of the border clearing efforts on Saturday. He said that the number has increased since the announcement.
San Pedro Lobster Festival lovers are coming back for 5th year
The Jansen & Racut family are returning on the 13tb of June to San Pedro, Belize. They have been coming every June to attend Lobster Fest since 2009. This year will be the 5th year they have returned to the Island. Wishing the Belize fishermen a great lobster season. Ready for a good time at the Lobster Fest events all week and to finish the week with a bang at the Lobster Fest Block Party 2013! Jennifer Jansen
I am not surprised the Jansen & Racut families are returning for their 5th year of San Pedro lobsterfest fun. As I was downloading the lobsterfest pictures of the annual block party that Jennifer sent, I was taken back in time. It made me all the more excited for Lobsterfest 2013, so many choices of delicious food and drinks, the cute dresses, great live music, the time we had the biggest downpour and hanging out with friends. What could be a better recipe for a great party. Make sure you toss a couple of ziplocks in your purse or pocket if you have any electronic gear, it always rains to some degree at the big block party. Thankfully decoration meltdown was the worst weather related mishap to date.
Here is the official San Pedro Lobster Festival 2013 event schedule.
AADIL IS ECO FRIENDLY
My name is Aadil Nu ‘Man I am 8 years old. I am a standard II student at Grace Primary School. Let me tell you how I am ECO FRIENDLY.
Everyday I try to recycle, reuse, and reduce. Early in the morning I wake up, eat my breakfast. Any left over food scraps like orange peels, vegetables, tea bags egg shells and rice I put it in a container. In the evening I take it out in the corner of my back yard and use it to fertilize my plants. When I get new clothes and toys I put one of my toys or clothes that I am not using in a bag. All our family members do this so when we have a lot we have a yard sale. If any is left then we give to the less fortunate neighbors and friends. When we come out of our rooms for a little while I turn of my lights instead of wasting electricity and letting the electricity bill come high.
Belize Looking to Neighbors and PPCR to Build Climate Resilience
Like other countries in the Eastern Caribbean region, Belize is highly vulnerable to natural hazards such as coastal and inland flooding, high winds, fire, and drought, all of which are being exacerbated by climate change. And like its neighbors, Belize is doing something about it. Following the lead of other Caribbean countries involved in the Pilot Program for Climate Resilience (PPCR), Belize is initiating a comprehensive climate resilience investment plan that spans across sectors to mainstream climate change in its national development planning and action.
Drive on any of Belize’s four main highways and you will quickly understand how tough it is to maintain this main network connecting Belmopan and Belize City, the two key economic zones. Frequent floods impede commuting and the transportation of goods and can cut off the population for several days. It’s only going to get worse, as recent studies indicate that Belize will undergo a warming and drying trend and is expected to endure even more frequent and intense rainfalls. Seventy percent of its people live in low-lying areas prone to recurrent flooding, so reducing vulnerability to natural disasters is at the core of Belize’s development challenge.
“Didn’t Work Out, Did It?” in Ambergris Caye, Belize.
Following the tome that yesterday’s edition turned out to be I decided that today’s edition would be much, much tighter. After all, you – the people that take the time and have the interest to read my ramblings- are likely to have far less time than me.
So for those of you for whom time is a precious commodity today’s edition is written with being concise in mind.
I spent a little time yesterday reading The Covenant by James A Michener. The reading this time though was from a paperback and not via my Kindle. A really nice change. There’s something about having a book in your hands and turning real pages and not pressing a button. Or is it an age thing?
I picked up the book at BC’s Beach Bar, where they have a corner set aside for people to deposit books that they have finished with. I will return the compliment in a few weeks when Rose and I move to our build in Ambergris Caye, Belize and clear the bookshelves of the condo we are renting.
Mennonite Gurls A'ken Cook: Greek Mater and Feta Dip
1/4 cup olif' earl
3-4 small maters, chopped (Roma er uther firm maters)
4 gree onyuns, sliced
8 oz. crumbled Feta cheez
2 teespoons Greek seesonin', t' taste*
1 baguette, sliced n' servin size pieces
Drizzle olif' earl on a large plattr.
Scattr t'chopped maters ovr t'olif' earl.
Why I Had A Great Time At #TBEX
As you may or may not know, I’m pretty strict about not publishing content that isn’t Belize related on this blog, however, I’ve decided to share a bit of the experience I had at Travel Blog Exchange (TBEX) 2013.
TBEX took over Toronto this weekend and that meant that there were a whole lot of travel bloggers in town, over 1300 individuals to be more specific. Some came to network and many others were lured in by the incentive of learning how they can get a piece of the travel blogger industry pie.
CABINET’S DECISION ON NCL’S PROPOSED DEVELOPMENT ON CRAWL CAYE
Belizeans and true friends of Belize,
It appears as though the Cabinet has made a pronouncement concerning the proposed Norwegian Cruise Lines development on Crawl Caye.
As with all things, especially in dealing with matters deriving from this administration, a word to the wise is that despite what you glean from the press release…”the devil is in the details”.
On the surface it looks as though the Cabinet made a wise, sound and appropriate decision, based on the statutes involving environmental protection. Yet, it causes the “enquiring mind” to query why, on one hand they opt to disregard issues pertaining to environmental protection and concern, when it involves seismic testing and oil exploration in our forest reserves, then subsequently show signs of an environmental “conscience” regarding the matter at hand. The bottom line is, that “all that glitters isn’t gold”.
Again, given this administration’s propensity for manipulating the “law”, you are asked to pay keen attention to the wording of the release. In particular, kindly note where it reads…
“However, in an effort to stimulate employment and open up other economic benefits for Belizeans in the South, Cabinet did support Norwegian Cruise Line’s request to search for an alternate site in Southern Waters…”
Translation, people of the South and truly concerned Belizeans everywhere, gear up for round 2, because a development as lucrative as this one will certainly NOT be shelved.
The resurrection of the 7th amendment and Belize survivability in the 21st
On June 19th 2009, the Prime Minister of Belize, the Hon. Dean Barrow, while addressing the proposed 7th amendment to the Belize constitution in the National Assembly uttered the following words:
“Because our laws recognize dual citizenship how then will you turn around, recognizing dual citizenship, providing for dual citizenship but impose a limitation on a dual citizen. It makes no sense at all and if a little bit of history and background are necessary, we didn’t always recognize dual citizenship. The recognition of dual citizenship came about as a consequence of the advance in legislation that was promoted by national hero Phillip Goldson. But we turn around and we leave intact in the constitution for all these years this impairment on the rights of the Belizean who have acquired a second nationality. I say therefore, Mr. Speaker, that it is utterly and completely contradictory. I also say it is inconsistent, and let me tell you why it is inconsistent, if you are a Belizean who has acquired second nationality you are disqualified from sitting in the National Assembly, but the Governor General, whose office is from a protocol point of view the highest office in the land, there is no such disqualification. The Governor General can be a Belizean who has acquired a second nationality. He is not barred from being Governor General and that is the highest office in the land. “
The New Bill Gates Vaccine is Not as Safe as They Say
Yesterday Reuters put out an article that praises MenAfrivac which is a vaccine that fights meningitis in places such as Africa where the disease is more common due to various reasons such as lack of medical treatment. They really went out of their way to point out the good this vaccine has done.
The thing is, they forgot to mention this:
This is a French written article in a journal called “La Voix” out of Chad where this incident took place. I will provide a partial translation of what happened, the translation comes from VaxTruth.com and it has been verified by several people including myself.
On December 20, 2012, a vaccination tragedy hit the small village of Gouro, located in northern Chad, Africa. According to the newspaper La Voix, out of five hundred children who received the new meningitis vaccine MenAfriVac, at least 40 of them between the ages of 7 and 18 have become paralyzed. Those children also suffered hallucinations and convulsions.
The Grid Earth Project, 1% Club and Waka Waka Light Change Life in Cayo District
In May of 2013 the Grid Earth Project distributed more than 300 Waka Waka solar lamps in the Cayo District of Belize, in a project funded through the 1% Club. This permanently changed the lives of thousands of residents of the area. An amazing thing happened in May of 2013. The Villages of Armenia, St. Mathews and Los Tombos all took a 150 year leap into the future.
Until now they have been living with kerosene lamps and candles for household light. According to the World Health Organization, nearly 1000 people die daily from burns caused by kerosene lamps.
Another 2.5 million die from respiratory illness caused by breathing toxic fumes.
Grid Earth Project distributed over 300 Waka Waka solar lamps to all of the households in these villages. Now the burns and illness associated with living without access to safe light is a thing of the past in these villages and thousands of people will live better lives as a result.
The project was made possible by generous contributions made through the 1% Club.
The Grid Earth Project distributes solar light in underdeveloped areas that do not have access to electricity.
Family petitions government, hoping for answers in son’s death
A Calgary family is desperate for answers following the death of their son in Belize, and are now petitioning the House of Commons in hopes of getting closure.
35-year-old Jeffrey Furgala was taken into custody in January after being arrested for public intoxication. About nine hours after he was locked up, officials found him unconscious. Furgala died a few days later in hospital. Police in Belize said Furgala fell in his cell, and causing head injuries—but his family says they’re getting contradictory information. His mother requested documents from the coroner, but certain information was left out.
“It says in there that he was tested for toxicity,” explains Fern Tiberio. “If you’re gonna go portray my son as being intoxicated, prove it to me. The autopsy report is absent of any report of toxicity.”
Caldwell College Students Help Build Church in Central American Village
A mission trip to the Central American country of Belize in May turned out to be a life-changing event for 11 Caldwell College students.
Led by college president Dr. Nancy Blattner, her husband Tim and staff member Meghan Moran, the group spent eight days in Punta Gorda, Belize, serving families and children.
When members of the group arrived at their destination May 13, they were greeted by Father Lou McCabe, an American Jesuit, who assigned them to assist local carpenters in building a church in the village of Corazon Creek. The foundation had already been poured and eight pillars had been set.
The students' job was to help pour the remaining pillars, frame the structure, and construct the roof. That last task included putting up 11 handmade triangular support beams and applying zinc sheeting — all of which was set on a tight deadline.
Fortis foes allege eco-misdeeds
In pressing the case that the proposed $1.5 billion acquisition of Central Hudson by Canadian holding company Fortis would be bad for ratepayers, Citizens for Local Power (CLP), an Ulster-based grassroots group which has risen to oppose the merger, is pointing to what they say is Fortis’ poor record in dealing with projects in Belize and British Columbia and warning the same could happen here.
“We’re seeing a trend in Belize and British Columbia of misinformation and a lack of trust, and we’re seeing this the more research we do,” said CLP attorney Daniel Duthie at a press conference May 23 at the County Office Building in Kingston. At the conference, several — including some from the Central American nation and the western Canadian province brought in via an occasionally balky Skype connection — spoke in opposition to the deal, which could, activists say, be approved as soon as the Public Service Commission’s next public meeting on June 13.