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Last night's TV news on Channel 7, Channel 5 and CTV3
Also with the most recent Open Your Eyes, and the Dickie Bradley Specials


The San Pedro Sun

The San Pedro Junior Sailing Club wins both Buttonwood Bay and Baron Bliss Harbor Regattas
It was an exciting weekend for sailing clubs from across the country as they traveled to Belize City to participate in the annual Buttonwood Bay and Baron Bliss Harbor Regatta. Both regattas are Belize Sailing Association (BzA) national ranking regattas and all the sailors were out for the win. But it was San Pedro Junior Sailing Club (SPJSC) who took the grand first place trophy for both regattas. Held on Saturday, March 8th, the Buttonwood Bay Regatta was hosted by the Belize Sea Scouts. 49 young sailors participated in a series of six races in the optimist class. Participating clubs included SPJSC, Sea Scouts, Belize City Sailing Club (BCSC), Corozal Bay Sailing Club (CBSC), Placencia Sailing Club (PSC) and San Pedro Sailing Club (SPR).

Gaby Nuñez is San Pedro Town’s new Deputy Mayor
San Pedro Town has a new Deputy Mayor in the person of Gabriel “Gaby” Nuñez. The announcement was made by The San Pedro Town Council on March 7th via a press release in which it indicates that Nuñez took over the responsibility from councilor for the year 2014-2015. The new appointment of Nuñez also saw assignments of responsibility being reshuffled within the council. “The new appointment does not really affect any of our portfolios since the Deputy Mayor’s position is rotated every year. For me I am appreciative of the responsibility entrusted to me by my other colleagues and I will continue to work with them as I have been doing since I was elected to office. I will continue to support them, be by their side and work hand in hand with all my councilors as I have been doing in the past,” commented the new Deputy Mayor.

Oceana My Reef Instagram Competition Winners Announced
Oceana in Belize is pleased to announce the winners of its Instagram Competition. We congratulate Andrew Roe for his first place entry—“Pelican heading to roust at South Water Caye.” Through the generosity of anonymous donor, Andrew takes home a GoPro digital camera. Second place honors go to Belize City resident Chloe Cruz whose entry “Sharks” earns her a night’s stay at Belize Nirvana hotel in Placencia village, courtesy Barbara and Evan Bull.

Misc Belizean Sources

Best Places In Belize With Larry Waight & Jen Knoedl
No longer the world’s “Best Kept Secret”, Belize is attracting travelers of all kinds from all over the world. Jen Knoedl hosts a video Interview with Larry Waight of the Belize Media Group to discuss the best places to visit and experience in and near Belize.

Shooting in San Pedro town injured one man
A shooting incident just before 9:30 last night in San Pedro town has left one man injured. The victim has been identified as Victor Garnet. According to reports, Garnett was shot multiple times and sustained injuries to his abdomen. He was first treated at the Otto Rodriguez Polyclinic in San Pedro town then airlifted via Tropic Air to Belize City where he is not undergoing treatment at the Karl Heuser Memorial hospital. Police are investigating the shooting on incident and have so far collected at least 7 expended shells from the scene of the shooting Laguna Driver in the Boca del Rio area of San Pedro Town.

BAAS 2014: Ancient Maya Domestic Economy
BAAS Belize Archeology & Anthropology Symposium July 1-4

Are you ready to talk, Bishop Dorrick Wright?
Please permit me to offer a brief commentary on the much-publicized letter from the Bishop of the Roman Catholic Church Reverend Dorrick Wright banning certain organizations from your schools. First off, I start from the position that I am not a member of the Roman Catholic Church; but I am a Christian. Sir, – Mr. Bishop Wright – I believe that you have taken the wrong approach to the whole situation. If the ban on these organizations is based on the supposed promotion of things that are contrary to your church’s Biblical standards, shouldn’t you have taken a Biblical approach to dealing with it? I believe that the Bible says that if a brother or a sister is found to have sinned, the church should do all it can to bring that person to repentance. This I interpret to mean, in the literal sense, dialogue. Talking to the person, understanding the root of their error and using the Holy Spirit to convict them of their wrong and trust the saving grace of God to bring them to Salvation.

Orange Walk man busted with marijuana
A man from San Estevan village in the Orange Walk district has been booked on a charge of drug trafficking. Forty year old Carmen Lino was busted with a plastic bag containing marijuana on Thursday afternoon. The police press officer says that cops on mobile patrol saw Lino acting suspicious and so they stopped and searched him. Police say that initial search did not find anything incriminating. But when police saw a motorcycle parked a short distance from where they stopped Lino, they decided to take a closer look. That was when they opened a sport bag that was on the motorcycle and found the marijuana in small foil packets weighing 140 grams.

Belmopan Cycling Classic
Today is the 33rd annual Smart Belmopan Cycling Classic. "The Annual SMART Belmopan Classic travels from SMART Headquarters on the Philip Goldson Highway through Belize City and unto the George Price Highway to Belmopan, where it goes around the Ring Road and returns back via the same route to Finish with one lap from the Round a Bout that goes from Napa to the Sol Round a Bout at Buttonwood Bay Blvd for the Open Elite/Masters; while the Female/Junior/Youth use the same route but only to La Democracia and return"

Video: Belize Vacation Trip
Slide show of our trip to Belize (Feb 2014). First half is Almond Beach Resort, second half is Caves Branch Lodge.

Video: Belize 2014 Sailing Adventure
Belize bareboat charter through TMM at San Pedro, Ambergris Caye Belize. Sailing Vessels Hope and Toucan head south through Spanish Lookout Caye, Middle Long Caye, Tobacco Caye, South Water Caye, to Carrie Bow Caye. Then turned north to Garbutts Cay, St. Georges Caye, Caye Caulker and back to San Pedro. March, 2014 Adventure.

Video: SunBreeze Suites Hotel - San Pedro - Belize
Offering a freshwater pool, patio bar and free Wi-Fi, SunBreeze Suites is on a private beach on the tropical island of Ambergris Caye. Each spacious suite has a balcony overlooking the sea. The bright, air-conditioned SunBreeze Suites have a bedroom, a bathroom and a living-dining room with a queen-size sofa bed and cable TV. The well-equipped kitchenettes feature a stove and fridge. In central San Pedro, the complex is within a 5 minute walk of many supermarkets, gift shops and open-air restaurants. San Pedro Airport is only half a mile away. The staff can arrange island transportation and help you plan excursions throughout Belize. They can also recommend local scuba diving centers, perfect for exploring the off-shore barrier reef.

Video: Permit landed at Tarpon Caye Belize
Dr. Greg G. and guide, Charles Leslie Sr., landing his permit at Tarpon Caye Belize April 29, 2012

Video: How To Tie The Calvo Permit Crab (Tarpon Caye Belize)
A step by step video on how to tie the famous Calvo Permit Crab. A big thank you to our friend Pablo Calvo for sending us this video and allowing us to share with all our fans.

Video: Diving with BDS Caye Caulker, Belize
2014 Belize Scuba Diving Vacation, Diving off of Caye Caulker, Belize with Belize Diving Services!

Video: Belize 2/3/2014
1º dia de mergulhos a partir de San Pedro, Ambergris Caye. Imagens feitas em uma GoPro Hero2

Video: 4 The World Belize 2014
NCSU ASB Trip

Video: Belize Hang
Trip to Belize...long weekend. Saw a dolphin. :-)

Video: Scuba Diving - South Water Caye, Belize - Lawrence Academy Winterim
Lawrence Academy Winterim IZE Hopkins Underwater Adventures South Water Caye, Belize Scuba Diving PADI Certification GoPro By Adrian Colmenares & James (Tanner) Murphy

Video: Best of Belize short clips
A mix of short clips from our diving adventure with Chuck & Robbie's crew in Belize. Featured are Loggerhead Turtles, Green turtles, Hawksbill Turtles, Trumpet Fish, Reef Sharks, Nurse Sharks, Moray Eels, Creole Wrasse, Lobster and Anglefish.

The Belize Times

Laura Esquivel booted from BTB – Executive Managers cast Vote of No Confidence
There was no rolling out of the red carpet or extravagant “farewell parties” which Directors at the Belize Tourism Board have become accustomed to when political appointee, Laura Esquivel-Frampton, stomped out of the Albert Street office on Tuesday. Reports are that the cheers and “party” actually started after Esquivel-Frampton walked out of the building, as the staff only had good riddance to say. Esquivel-Frampton becomes the 4th Director to fall out of grace at the institution within only six short years under the Barrow Administration. This serious instability within an institution that plays a key and integral role in the nation’s economy and development is a sad state of affairs. But Esquivel-Frampton’s departure ends on a sourer note than those who have walked through the exit door before her. Esquivel-Frampton was forced out of BTB by members of her own senior management team. A kind of high level backstabbing. Seven senior managers (Kevin Gonzalez, Director of Destination Planning; Armeid Thompson, Director of Quality Assurance; Keisha Faber, Director of Administration; Javier Paredez, Director of Revenue Collection/Registrar of Hotels; Alyssa Carnegie, Director of Marketing, Industry Relations; Valdemar Andrade, Director of Cruise and Regional Initiatives and Karen Pike, Director of Information Management) met secretly and plotted how to turn against Esquivel-Frampton. They complained bitterly to the Minister of Tourism, Manuel Herredia Jr. that she must go.

Editorial: Belizean Roulette
Russian Roulette is a potentially lethal game of chance in which a player places a single round in a revolver, spins the cylinder, places the muzzle against his head, and pulls the trigger. A careful review of Dean Barrow’s actions and reactions to the Penner saga confirms that Barrow is a gambling man and Penner is his “single round”. Last week Monday, history was made when the Leader of the Opposition, the Hon. Francis Fonseca, overcame all odds and delivered a big win for the people of Belize. In September of 2013, Prime Minister Dean Barrow set the tone for his minions by publicly announcing that Elvin Penner did not commit any crime and that there was no need for an investigation. Following the landmark decision by the Chief Justice of Belize, and with the world now watching his every move under a microscope, Barrow was forced into a corner and had no choice but to change his tune. When asked about the Penner investigation last week Friday, Barrow grudgingly declared that the investigation was “none of his business”. All of a sudden.

REJECTED – Pharmacist Association opposes Appointment of Erwin Contreras’ daughter
The Pharmacist Association has reacted furiously to the appointment of UDP Minister Erwin Contreras’ daughter to the post of “Drug Inspectorate” in the Ministry of Health. The Association held an emergency meeting last week to discuss the appointment, after reports surfaced that Danini Contreras was unqualified for the post. The BELIZE TIMES reported last week that Contreras, who is a recent graduate of a University in Guatemala, was not a suitable candidate for the post. She has no experience in pharmacy in Belize and is not even a registered pharmacist in the country. Her only qualification seems to be her direct connection to her father, Minister of Trade and Economic Development, Erwin Contreras.

John Saldivar’s death sentence for BDF Soldier
The family of Belize Defense Force Corporal Norman Rodriguez have resigned any hopes that the Government of Belize will show compassion and sympathy for their loved one, a military officer who is desperately seeking assistance for medical treatment. In 2007, Corporal Rodriguez found out he had Arterio-Venous Malformation (AVM), an abnormal connection between arteries and veins in his brain which causes pain and can lead to hemorrhages and difficulties with body movement and coordination. Corporal Rodriguez began receiving medical treatment for free, as is afforded to every BDF soldier. About two years ago, the BDF decided they would no longer provide medical service to him. Corporal Rodriguez said he doesn’t know why his requests for medical assistance have been rejected but his concern has heightened since his last medical tests show that the malformation had increased in size and had spread across his brain.

Penner flees to Chetumal
Elvin Penner, Belize’s most hated UDP politician and a fugitive who is wanted for a serious crime against our nation, is on the run with the help of the UDP Government. Photos have surfaced on Facebook showing Penner and his wife frolicking inside a popular restaurant in nearby Chetumal. The photos were posted on Saturday March 8th. Commissioner of Police Allen Whylie seems not to have understood the seriousness of an order issued by Supreme Court Chief Justice Kenneth Benjamin for an accelerated criminal investigation into Penner’s issuance of Belizean nationality and a passport to Kim Won Hong, a South Korean national who was in prison in Taiwan.

Think About It
DISRESPECTING THE CHURCH “Fools rush in where wise men (and women) fear to tread”. So goes an important saying. It is sensible advice. The Prime Minister’s Special Envoy wife and the Prime Minister’s Executive Director of the National women commission need some sensible advice. Both are being quoted on Channel 5 and Channel 7 news as responding to a release signed by Roman Catholic Bishop Dorick Wright on why his church is not supporting the so-called Women’s Rally. Bishop Dorick Wright’s press release said in part that the “National Women Commission promotes values that CONTRADICT Christian and moral teachings regarding respect for all human life, family marriage and human sexuality….The well-being of women cannot be enhanced by advocacy which promotes abortions and so-called pseudo rights of men and women and same sex relationships”

Longsworth & Willoughby War!
Tensions are running high in the UDP Albert Camp after absentee area representative Herman Longsworth called out his wanna be contender Phillip Willoughby for cherry picking on his plan for residents in area. Longsworth took on Willoughby and his master Gaspar Vega last week when he exposed that Vega had stolen his idea of facilitating land papers for residents. Longsworth said the day after he visited Vega with land documents, he saw Willoughby walking through the Albert Division with Vega’s Commissioner of Lands Wilbert Vallejos. ...

Alcohol Addiction is Only One Sip Away
By Dr. Angela Banner Joseph Alcohol can ruin your life and the lives of others, so why take even one drink? -Duane Alan Hahn Why do young people drink alcohol, and what can we do to educate them about the consequences of their first sip? One of the most dangerous addictive drugs ...

HOME ECONOMICS – Review of the 2014-2015 Budget
By Richard Harrison Last week the Government of Belize read its proposed annual budget for the nation. The proposed TOTAL REVENUES & GRANTS should increase from around $900 million, to around $956 million….a growth of 6.2%. The proposed TOTAL EXPENDITURES will grow from around $974 million, to around $1,013 million….a growth of 4%. Thus ...

WOMAN IN THE HOUSE – The Bar is watching you, Sedi
By Dolores Balderamos Garcia The Bar that I talk about this week is not the one where we go for a beer, drink or glass of wine. It is the Bar Association of Belize, the worthy gathering and conglomeration of attorneys-at-law who are qualified and admitted to practise law in Belize. ...

Misguided Spending
By Norris Hall There is a whole heap of money being spent irrationally in Belize City as compared to the rest of the country where neglect is rampant. It appears that for every ten dollars spent on the least productive area of Belize, one dollar is spent everywhere else. Apart from ...

Clueless Herredia! – Tourism Minister held at ransom by BTB managers
Tourism Minister Manuel Herredia has not properly explained how his flagship tourism institution is again in turmoil. The Belize Tourism Board is searching for their fourth tourism director after only six years under Herredia’s leadership. The Minister appeared shaken and, as usual, incapable of speaking with sense when he was interviewed about the internal fighting at BTB which resulted in Director Laura Esquivel-Frampton pushed out of her post. Herredia was held at ransom by seven senior employees who felt that his political appointment of Esquivel-Frampton as head of BTB was a terrible decision. In a scathing letter calling for the head of the BTB Director, the senior managers forced Herredia to face whatever political repercussions came his way with getting rid of Esquivel-Frampton, who is the daughter of former Prime Minister Manuel Esquivel. Choosing not to do so would welcome a worse scenario, the managers told Herredia. ...

Delroy Cuthkelvin Squeals Foul!!
Ms Pearl Stuart Secretary General UDP Headquarters Belize City Dear Ms Stuart: The Committee to Elect Delroy Cuthkelvin hereby informs the UDP Secretariat of our disapproval with the arbitrary decision to prepare a block-out list of almost 900 voters who the Party Chairman and Secretariat propose to disallow from voting ...

Chan Pine Ridge will support Hon. Dr. Marco Mendez elections day!
Dear Editor, The people of Chan Pine Ridge wish to publicly express their full and unwavering support to our Area Representative duly elected Hon. Dr. Marco Tulio Méndez in Orange Walk East, who over the recent years has positively impacted our once forsaken village. As Simon Sinek once declared, “Great leaders ...

BTB Senior Managers Bash Laura Esquivel
Honorable Manuel Heredia Jr. Minister of Tourism, Culture and Civil Aviation Dearest Minister Heredia, After several meetings held with you, past and present Chairmen of the Board, Board Directors and the CEO of the Ministry of Tourism and Culture, we, the undersigned, have composed this official grievance to express our dissatisfaction ...

Gwen Liz girls advance to softball nationals
The Gwen Lizarraga High School will take on the northern regional champs, the Belize Rural High School girls, at the high school softball championships to be hosted by Kings College in Maskall on March 14-15. The Gwen ...

San Ignacio United draws with FC Belize 3-2
San Ignacio United drew 3-1 with FC Belize when the Premier League’s 2014 closing season kicked off at the MCC garden on Sunday. FC Belize’s star striker Jarret ...

Belize Bank Bulldogs reign as La Ruta Maya Champs Belize Bank Bulldogs reign as La Ruta Maya Champs
The Belize Bank Bulldogs team of Armin Lopez, Amado and Daniel Cruz demonstrated major superiority, tact and skill when they won the 16th annual Belikin Ruta Maya River Challenge for the 3rd year. Bulldogs won the 4 ...

Blogs

Friday Afternoon & A Minister’s State Funeral in Caye Caulker, Belize
As I was exiting the boat, there was quite a commotion going on at the next dock. A large cruise ship tender boat unloading a big crowd and as I got closer… the street was lined with the Belize Defense Force members in formation. The burial of Former Belize Minister Louis Sylvestre – who served the country from 1957 to 1984 as Belize was becoming her own country. His family had a home in Caye Caulker for years and it was here that he wished his ashes to be scattered.

Big Rock Falls, Blancaneaux Lodge & Basil Mojitos in Belize
If you're traveling to Western Belize, here's a not-to-miss a trip to Big Rock Falls and a special recipe that you can make at home for your own little taste of Belize. Located on the Caribbean Coast of Central America and bordered by Mexico and Guatemala, Belize is a travel destination that I’ve visited twice and both times, I’ve traveled away from the popular coast and into Western Belize to stay at eco-friendly lodges and hang out with the locals. From hiking, to horseback riding to viewing wildlife, Belize is a diverse destination. Below is one of my top picks for things to do on your vacation in Belize, including the recipe for the best Basil Mojito I've ever tasted--- straight from Belize. To see these adventures first-hand, watch the "Best of Western Belize" episode in my new, original series Travel Like the Locals with Darley for ulive.com, the new online video channel from Scripps Networks Interactive. Horseback Riding to Big Rock Falls in Belize from Blancaneaux Lodge One of the coolest adventures that I experienced in Belize was a horseback ride from luxurious Blancaneaux Lodge to a "secret" waterfall, deep within the Mountain Pine Ridge Forest Reserve. Blancaneaux Lodge is owned by famous director Francis Ford Coppola. It's an eco-friendly Hollywood-esque resort in the Mountain Pine Ridge Reserve in Western Belize.

International Sources

More Thoughts On The Upcoming 2014 Atlantic Hurricane Season
I am someone who constantly looks at the weather and tries to figure out what the current weather pattern may bring in the days, weeks and even months ahead; so, here is what I’m seeing in the data that could impact the 2014 Atlantic Hurricane Season. The latest sea surface temperatures continue to show a weakening La Nina and I continue to expect that an El Nino will develop this summer and likely will continue through the autumn and into the winter of 2014-15. A typical El Nino usually shuts down tropical cyclone formation across the Atlantic due to higher than average wind shear, especially across the zone from the coast of Africa to the Lesser Antilles. Sometimes during this sort of setup we see an area of lower wind shear develop near the US Southeast coast, western Caribbean and across parts of the Gulf of Mexico. The current sea surface temperature profile over the Atlantic Basin features colder than average sea surface temperatures over the zone between the Lesser Antilles and the coast of Africa and warmer than average sea surface temperatures from near Bermuda westward to near the US Southeast coast. This sort of sea surface temperature pattern if it combines with the expected El Nino may mean that tropical disturbances tracking off of Africa may struggle until they get west of 60 to 65 West Longitude; meaning this could be a season of in-close development and homebrew tropical development near the US Southeast coast, the Bahamas, the western Caribbean and into parts of the Gulf of Mexico.

American injured as 2-seater plane crashes in Belize
Civil aviation officials were continuing investigations Saturday into the crash of a two-seater single engine aircraft at the Punta Gorda airstrip on Friday. The authorities say while the pilot, Michael Bogacz escaped unscathed, his female passenger, Jennifer Sobre had been taken to the Punta Gorda Hospital in a critical, but stable condition. Police Inspector Ernel Dominquez said that the plane crashed near the compound of the Ministry of Works and suffered extensive damage to its front, wings and tail end. He said the authorities are working on the theory that the plane developed mechanical problems while in the area of the airstrip and was forced to crash land.

Vendors sceptical about lionfish
Lionfish and bake may taste delicious but the misconception that it is poisonous remains the biggest obstacle for its acceptance as an alternative to shark and bake. This is the view of University of Southampton postgraduate researcher Fadilah Ali. Ali, the PhD candidate who has dissected more than 10,000 lionfish, told the Sunday Guardian via e-mail that the lionfish was not poisonous, but that the tips of its barbs contained venom instead. If it stuck someone, it would be painful but was not fatal, and no one has died from it. Ali said throughout the Caribbean there was a great misconception that the lionfish was poisonous and as a result there was a general unwillingness to eat the fish. She said education via the media was the only way to clear up these misconceptions and also prove to people the benefits of eating lionfish.

Crime & Violence In Latin America & The Caribbean: How To Cope With It Using A Human Face
The underlying causes of crime and violence in Latin America and the Caribbean (LAC) region stems from drugs, inflation, poverty, unemployment, and lack of social inclusion. The United Nations (UN) stated in a 2007 report on "Crime and Development in Central America" that it's geographical position is what makes them exposed to the world's largest suppliers and consumers of cocaine. This could make Central America vulnerable to crime and influenced by crime. Plus, the United Nation Development Programme (UNDP) Caribbean Human Development Report, launched in 2012, states that drug-trafficking and organized crime generate violence. According to the World Bank, Latin America accounts for 30 percent of the world's homicides. A Latin American security expert for the World Bank stated that the LAC region represents 9 percent of the global population. And, that seven out of ten countries with the world's highest homicide rates are from that region. In Central America, Mexico, Honduras, El Salvador, Belize and Guatemala, all have high crime rates; as well as in South America: Venezuela, Colombia, and Brazil. In addition, Jamaica in the Caribbean.