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#495107 - 08/28/14 11:24 AM Today's Belize News: August 28, 2014
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Specials and Events

Last night's TV news on Channel 7, Channel 5 and CTV 3
Also with the most recent Open Your Eyes, and the Dickie Bradley Specials


The San Pedro Sun

Police investigating chopping incident
Police on Ambergris Caye have arrested and charged 20-year-old Simon Velasquez, a laborer of the Boca del Rio area of San Pedro Town. Velasquez is being accused of charging at and chopping, 31-year old Tyron Garnett on Friday August 22nd while on Angel Coral Street. According to Police, sometime around 4:45PM on Friday, Garnett was driving a white Toyota Hilux pick-up truck belonging to Belize Telemedia Limited (BTL) on Angel Coral Street from the direction of Caribbean Street southwards. Garnett told police that as he was heading southwards; his attention was drawn to a group of men running from Ambergris Street and onto Angel Coral Street, forcing him to come to a complete stop. At that point, a man later identified as Velasquez allegedly proceeded towards the vehicle with a machete in hand and charged at Garnett.

BELPO holds 1st leadership training for Social and Environmental Justice
The Belize Institute of Environmental Law and Policy (BELPO) held its first Leadership Training for Social and Environmental Justice for young adults from August 15-17, 2014. BELPO partnered with the Environmental Law Alliance Worldwide (ELAW) and the Centre for Creative Leadership (CCL) to create a leadership program to act as a beginning for a non-partisan and non-sectarian way forward for striving for social justice and protecting the natural resources of Belize for present and future generations. The training program sought to encourage 15 future leaders to work for social and environmental justice issues by helping them see their own potential for change in Belize. This involved demonstrating that they can choose to make a difference based upon their own ideas and plans.

San Pedro Veterans Football Club strengthen relationship with Puerto Cortez Veterans
The San Pedro Veterans Football Club was in Honduras from Thursday, August 14th to Monday, August 18th to participate in two friendly football matches. The Veterans have had a long-lasting relationship with Honduran football clubs, and these friendlies serve to strengthen the relationship. The first match was played in San Pedro Sula, Honduras on Friday, August 15th against the Marathon Football Clubs substitute players. Unfortunately, the Veterans were no match for the young national ranking athletes. The game ended in a 1-6 loss for the Veterans. For the second game the Veterans travelled to Puerto Cortez, Honduras where they faced off the Puerto Cortez Veterans Football Club on Sunday, August 17th. The game ended in a 1-1 tie.

Ambergris Today

Angel Sofie Enjoys Parent and Child Pampering at Oasis Spa
As summer vacation draws to an end everyone is getting ready to head back to school, purchasing school supplies and getting everything set. Trips to the beach, play dates and other fun activities that children enjoy during summer are about to end, but what better way to say ‘good-bye’ to this year’s summer vacation than with a relaxing day at the spa – parent and child fun. Oasis Spa located at the Fido’s Pier has come up with a fantastic package for children and parent to enjoy at a very affordable price. Angel Sofie and her son Luis headed to Oasis Spa for an afternoon of fun, relaxation and bonding.

Machete Wielding Man Causes Panic in San Pedro Streets
Residents of Angel Coral Street were startled and scared as a man wielding a machete was chasing people around on the street and neighborhood. According to reports, the man was flinging his machete at random people on the street. According to police reports, on Friday, August 23, 2014, 31-year-old Tyrone Garnett, a Belizean technician employed at Belize Telemedia Limited reported to San Pedro Police that he was attacked by a man wielding a machete. Garnett stated that earlier that day around 4:45p.m. he was driving a white Toyota Hilux Pick-up, property of BTL, on Angel Coral Street, heading on a southern direction towards the Hon. Louis Sylvestre Sports Arena when he passed the junction of Angel Coral and Ambergris Streets; this was when he saw a group of people running from out of Ambergris Street towards Angel Coral Street.

Misc Belizean Sourcesmzz

September Celebration Dance
September 9th, Bird's Isle, 9pm - 2am. $15 each. Featuring The "Imperial Band" & "Caribbean Roots Band" from Corozal

Municipalities to Embark on Stakeholder Meetings to Discuss Municipal Development Plans
Belizeans will have the opportunity to discuss with their representatives and officials of Town and City Councils Draft Municipal Development Plans that is aimed to achieve cultural, environmental, social and economic development in their respective municipalities. The objective of the Stakeholder Meetings is to share the plan with stakeholders so that the respective Councils can adopt the plans by resolution. The meetings are scheduled for September to November, 2014 in the following municipalities: the City of Belmopan, Benque Viejo del Carmen, San Ignacio/Santa Elena, Corozal Town, Dangriga, Orange Walk Town, and Punta Gorda.

Graffiti Cover-up Painting Project
The Cayo Neighborhood Watch Association and the SISE police force worked together - painted together - on the Grafitti Cover-up Painting project. They painted over the grafitti at the Hawkesworth Bridge and other areas around Cayo. A big thanks to all involved in this great project! "San Ignacio /Santa Elena police officers together with a few dedicated CNWA members went out early morning to do some community service by painting over a few areas highly hit with graffiti. A big THANK YOU to all those that participated either in painting or by donating paint and equipment. "

Prime Minister Hon. Dean Barrow met with delegates of the Upcoming Miss Queen of the Bay Pageant.
During the meeting, the Prime Minister answered various questions from the delegates.

Miss San Pedro Pageant
This year the Miss San Pedro Pageant will have 2 ENTRANCES to alleviate the rush in entering the field. Show starts at 8:00 PM SHARP!....Don't be late....You won't want to miss the show!

Shrimp Fajita
This is a simple recipe for Shrimp Fajitas. I'm allergic to msg, so I had to innovative and make my own fajita seasonings. It added such a wonderful flavor to the dish. This meal is spicy and savory. Show more

Tropical disturbance in the Caribbean
Elsewhere, a tropical wave located several hundred miles east of the Lesser Antilles continues to produce disorganized cloudiness and showers. This system is forecast to move generally westward across the Caribbean Sea with little development during the next few days. However, environmental conditions could become favorable for some development by early next week in the western Caribbean Sea or southern Gulf of Mexico.

Battle of St. George's Caye Exhibit in Corozal
In collaboration with September Celebrations, the Corozal House of Culture is delighted to open the Battle of St. George's Caye Exhibit Thursday September 4, 2014 at 10:00 a.m. Please join us as we pay tribute to this momentous event which ended the Spanish's attempts to dislodge the British from Belize. The exhibit will be on display through to November.

The sugar squeeze - Sugar Quota to European Union Down
The Belize Sugar Cane Farmers Association (BSCFA) has received a letter from Tate & Lyle informing the organization that Tate and Lyle will commit to purchase a minimum 10,000 tons of sugar for the 2014/2015 season, which is a substantial drop from the 65,000 tons purchased in 2013/2014. It does not mean that Tate and Lyle will only buy 10,000 tonnes but it may purchase more depending on the demand in Europe. What is of concern is that the schedule in which the BSCFA is paid. Only when the sugar is sold as Fair Trade to customers in the EU, then the premium of $60 US dollars will be paid. The letter appears to be dismal however, assuming that there will be more sugar sold, Tate and Lyle promises to pay premium price on future purchases.

COROZAL TOWN:EVENING CLASSES for Primary School
Attention Parents in COROZAL TOWN:EVENING CLASSES for Primary School Children starts September 1, 2014. Venue - San Pedro Road, Altamira, Corozal Town. For more information please CALL Amy Alisa Vansen at 660-2458 as she caters to small groups so that each child can be attended to properly.

Xunantunich in Caribbean Belle Weddings
Xunantunich and Blancaneaux Lodge were featured in Caribbean Belle Weddings magazine. Conch Creative's majestic picture does Xunantunich right. More pictures from the wedding can be seen on Conch Creative's website. "Epic spread in the new issue of Caribbean Belle Weddings. The couple photographed amidst ancient Mayan ruins at El Castillo, Xunantunich, Belize, where legend says, 'a maiden dressed in white' would appear. The photographer, San Pedro, used Maya legends for inspiration on the day. Photography by Conch Creative Subscribe online to CBW at www.caribbeanbelleweddings.com"

Calla Creek Bus Stop Renovation
The 4 The World volunteer group that was just here, along with some help from the local villagers, painted the Calla Creek bus stop. They did quite a bit during their week here, including fixing up the bridge there, and doing arts and crafts with the kids. Thanks again, 4 The World! "The Bridge and bus stops are an important part of the Calla Creek community, providing a safe way for crossing the Mopan River and a protected location from the sun and rain for people to wait for buses and taxis. The ESL program was open for children of all ages and was a fun way to improve language and communication skills. Art and crafts as well as swimming, football and basketball were other activities that the team did with the children in the village and it was a fun way to finish each day. The team also delivered books and school supplies for the village. We are extremely grateful for our volunteers for all of their contributions!"

Thirsty Thursdays Grand Opening
Thirsty Thursdays is having their grand opening this Saturday. Tanya Carter will be there performing her new single, Pretty Face Bad Character, and shooting scenes for the music video. They'll have lots of drink specials throughout the night. "THE TIME YOU'VE ALL BEEN WAITING FOR IS HERE!!!! WE ARE PROUD TO PRESENT THIRSTY THURSDAYS SAN IGNACIO!!!! AND OF COURSE WE'RE DOING IT WITH A BANG!!!!! COME ON OUT AS THE PARTY STARTS FROM HAPPY HOUR!!!!"

Channel 7

Saldivar Suspended By PUP!
Two weeks ago, 7News broke the story of Arthur Saldivar – and the allegation that he had taken nine hundred and four thousand dollars of his client Melonie Coye’s money. Coye retained attorney Eamon Courtenay to sue Saldivar for the money. The sensational case has brought a lot of heat unto Arthur Saldivar, but also unto the PUP, for which he is a standard bearer for Belize Rural North. While Saldivar can handle his affairs in court, not so for the PUP in the court of public opinion; it has to act decisively to purge itself of any appearance of corruption. And that’s not only because of the party’s past record, but because of the criticism it put on the UDP for its handling of the Elvin Penner debacle – and the undercover coddling it claims the ruling party gave Penner. But, fact is, Penner was stripped as a minister, instantly and, then, after 26 more days of political hemorrhaging, made a persona non grata within the UDP.

Saldivar's Camp Ready For A Fight, While Candidate Remains Calm
But, if you think it’s going to be smooth going between now and then, think again, because Saldivar is a fighter! You’ve already heard about the crazy stuff he did for his client, so imagine what he wouldn’t do for himself! An indication of the vibes coming out of his camp came to us through facebook today. His campaigner Linsford Castillo posted this on his Facebook page: “Message to Godfrey Smith, Francis Smith, Eamon Courtenay and Dolores Balderamos and Company, this PUP fight will be to the bitter end. We shall not be moved!” To that, national campaign manager Godfrey Smith only told us, quote, “So be it.” So, in the next few weeks, we should expect anything, which is why we were ready – when we got a call this afternoon at 2:00 pm to go and interview Saldivar at Azrock, which is Linsford Castillo’s office. He wanted us to cover a donation he’s making to a cancer survivor. We’ll have that later, but of course, we used the opportunity to press him on his future with the PUP:…

FCIB Rejects Claims Of "No-Garifuna Language" Policy
Last night, we told you about the allegation which emerged out of Dangriga that a specific bank was preventing its employees from talking Garifuna amongst themselves or with employees. But no names were called. That ended today when it all burst out on social media – where First Caribbean Bank was accused by name. To back that up, the US based United Garifuna Association released a statement today saying it too has received reports, which it has allegedly confirmed. The UGAI says that its information is that Garifuna employees were warned several times against speaking the language among themselves or with customers, and that quote, “only English must be spoken.” End quote. Well, First Caribbean International Bank responded with a strong press release today saying that there is no such policy at any of its branches, and neither have any of the employees been discouraged from expressing themselves culturally. The Bank reminds everyone that it was the first to establish branches in the districts, starting with Dangriga Town in 1953.

Pedro Police Make Major Cocaine Bust
San Pedro Police are reporting tonight that they have almost a pound of cocaine in their possession after they it was found in an intelligence-led operation. This afternoon, based on information from Special Branch, officers went to Swan Street in San Pedro Town. There, they found a grey plastic bag in an abandoned lot. When the officers opened it, they found 373.7 grams – or 13 ounces – of cocaine inside. Because it couldn’t be connected to anyone in the area, it was deposited as found property.

Dillon Diamond Gets A Decade In Jail
26 year-old Dillon Diamond, a resident of Taylors Alley is at prison tonight, and he’s serving out the beginning of a 10-year sentence after he was convicted of attempted robbery in the Magistrate’s Court today. In his trial before Chief Magistrate Ann Marie Smith, witnesses testified for the prosecution that at around midday on June 20, 2013, he attempted to rob 3 Hispanic men at the point of a homemade sawed-off shotgun on East Canal. He tried to snatch their valuables, but fortunately, police officers were passing by on patrol at the same time. One of the officers caught Flowers as he was trying to flee, but he threw the weapon into the canal. He tried to hide, but the officers detained him, while he was still wearing a stocking mask over his face. One of the offices jumped into the canal after the gun and retrieved it.

Angel Dorado Was No Angel Say Nieghbors
34 year-Angel Dorado is spending the first night of a 6-month prison sentence after he was convicted of peeping into a window at a young girl. The 13 year-old female along with her aunt and her mother testified that on February 4, 2014, just before 6 that morning, she had just exited her bathroom with a towel wrapped around her when she caught Dorado peeping into her room. In court, he told the court that they fabricated the story against him because they had a grievance against him over the pulling of mango and limes from off his property at Mile 8. The mother of the child told the court that ever since he came to live in the area, he has been terrorizing people in the Mile 8 Community and that she had to take a stand and not let him take advantage of any of her children. Dorado also indicated to the court that he was only passing through the teenager’s yard and that he was never peeping at her.

GDP Growth Surges With Strong Sugar Showing, and A Citrus Rebound
GDP Growth Surges With Strong Sugar Showing, and A Citrus Rebound In May, we told you about the negative growth of GDP in the first quarter of the year. That’s after the GDP for the 2013-2104 fiscal year came in at just 1.5%, less than the projected 2.5%. So, for a while now, GDP growth has been lackluster. But, the news tonight is that thanks for a strong performance by sugar and a rebounding citrus industry, the second quarter of 2014 has shown the strongest growth of any quarter in memory. The Statistical Institute of Belize released the figures at a press conference today and Jules Vasquez reports:…

FFB Pres Vicente Admits Pitch Was Unsuitable
Last night, we told you about the internal struggles within the FFB executive which were aired out at a meeting on Monday night. The divided executive had been having disputes for months, but recently, it was aggravated by the fiasco with the FFB stadium which was not suitable for the Champion’s League. CONCACAF pulled the Belmopan Bandits because Belize failed to meet the standards for Champion’s League. At the time of decision, President Ruperto Vicente was convinced that it was the wrong decision, and he wrote to CONCACAF to express his disappointment. But, after having a bit of time to digest it, does he still feel the same way? He told us last night, that he now accepts that the pitch would not have been ready in time: Daniel Ortiz "Do you still maintain that we would have been able to be ready?"

The Fight Over Control of The Premier League
There was also one more important issue which didn’t make our newscast last night; it involves the way the top football league will be managed in the next coming months. Representatives from FIFA will come in to assist those who run the Premier League of Belize. The idea is to raise football standards at the semi-pro level, and to make it more successful commercially. But, as we told you, the semi-pro teams were not happy with recent decisions which were made. The issue was that the PLB is run by an autonomous executive which is separate from the Executive of the FFB. That’s until recently when one of the senior managers decided to vacate his position. In doing so, he handed over management to the FFB executive, which by the football statutes, were illegally running it. That’s where those letters we told you about, which were written FFB President Ruperto Vicente, come into play. The semi-pro teams, minus Belmopan Bandits, reportedly demanded that the league be handed back to the remaining executives of the PLB, or they wouldn’t play.

Harvesting The Waste Resource
Have you ever thought about garbage being a resource? Probably not. You simply throw it away and that’s the end of it! But there is more to garbage than you think. Today a training session for recyclers was held at the Belize City transfer station. The idea is to educate the recyclers on safety and health practices when handling garbage. Tyron Chimilio, social communication officer for the Belize Waste Management Authority explains the significance of the initiative to productivity of the sanitation workers as well as to the improvement of waste management in the city. Tyrone Chimilio, Social Communication Officer, Belize Solid Waste Management Authority "This training serves as the methodologies in place to better equip the recyclers in the work that they do. They have a very important job and they serve a wonderful purpose for us because it is a mechanism where we could know how much waste is being generated and how much waste can be recycled. One of the things we want the public to realise with the construction of the facilities under the solid waste management project, it is creating a paradigm shift in the way we look at waste management overall in the country. One of the issue is that we don't look at waste as a resource we just look at it as garbage. No, it is a resource and we want people to look at it in that form so that we can become more equipped and more aware and knowledgable of what we can do, what is being captured in terms of the waste recovery mechanism."

Popular Fast Food Joint Robbed
It’s a popular fast food joint on St. Thomas Street but this afternoon, Kelseys Fast Food was targeted by armed robbers. Around 4:30, 2 armed men entered the establishment – one who pointed a handgun at an employee – while the other picked up the cash pan. The men then fled off with the day’s sales. No one was hurt and according to reports, the police did take a while to respond.

GSU Gets Weed By The Bucket Plus A Bulletproof Vest
The GSU is reporting another drug seizure operation, this one in the Belama phase 4 area. Between 1:30 and 4 on Tuesday afternoon, the GSU searched a lot behind the residence of a well known drug supplier in the area and found 2.5 kilos or 5.51 pounds of weed in a white bucket that was buried in the lot. A blue bullet proof vest was also found in a white sack 10 feet away from the drugs. No one was found in the area and the items were deposited as found property. The drugs are believed to be the property of a drug dealer who associates with the PIV gang.

Arthur, The Philanthropist?
At the top of the news we told you all about the present difficulties Arthur Saldivar the political candidate is facing within his PUP party. But, today, he did some image rehabilitation with a donation to a needy cancer survivor. San Pedro resident Gloriela Leiva is a thyroid cancer survivor, but she hasn’t been able to go back to Merida for follow up treatment because she can’t afford it. And that’s what prompted her son to start stealing golf cart windshields – to raise the money for her. He is a minor and his case went to court recently – which is where Hubert Elrington came in. He heard of Leiva’s plight and asked his friend Arthur to help. He did and we asked him if it was for all the wrong reasons:.. Jules Vasquez "One will immediately say now the P.U.P the try to run you down and chase you out of they party, and now you are trying to show them that Arthur is a nice guy. How do you respond to that interpretation?"

Pumped Up For A Piano Concert
Preparations for September celebrations are underway and many are pumped up for the events scheduled for the month. But the Mexican Embassy is getting things started with a more subdued event, a Piano concert called “El Piano Internacional”. The concert features 3 very young but very skilled Mexican Pianists. Marcelino Miranda, Press Officer for the Mexican Embassy told us about it: Marcelino Miranda, Press Officer, Mexican Embassy "The embassy is very pleased to present 3 Mexican Pianist in Belize. This is going to be a very exciting concert, we are inviting all the public to come especially youths and children to have a look." Carlos Camacho, Pianist "We are very excited to be here. We're very happy about this invitation, it's the first time we're going to play here and we have very interesting pieces in this programme. We're playing 4 hands, 6 hands and piano solo parts. So we're going to present different styles of music of different composers such as Beethoven, Mozart, Finisterra."

Sweet Honey Harkens Back To Africa
If you appreciate African heritage and cultures then the Sweet Honey in the Rock concert is for you. Sweet Honey is an all-female acapella ensemble from the U.S here to perform as well as collaborate with Belizean artists on several presentations. Today one of the members of Sweet Honey discussed the diverse genres they capture through their performances. Louis Robinson, Sweet Honey in the Rock Member "We sing music at an African American tradition, Blues, Jazz, R&B, Gospel, civil rights songs or of the African biosphere. We do Salsa, African chants. We invite everyone to come and have a great time. It is an invitation, we think there will be a lot of different things to listen to, to feel, to think about, to share and to just have a good time with us."

Police Website Has A Porn Link
The official Belize police department website is under scrutiny tonight because of a link it has to a porn site. We were advised to go on the site and click on the link for jasmine alert. Seemed straightforward enough, but when we did it, it took us to a porn site, called jasminealert.com. Earlier today we called the police press officer who promised to urgently look into it – but when we checked a few minutes ago, the bad link was still there. As far as we could determine, the jasmine alert system has no official webpage, just a facebook site.


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#495108 - 08/28/14 11:25 AM Re: Today's Belize News: August 28, 2014 [Re: Marty]
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More News: Scroll up from here

Channel 5

P.U.P. Suspends Arthur Saldivar
Arthur Saldivar’s political career, or at least a political career with the PUP, is tonight in serious jeopardy. The controversial attorney and Belize Rural North Standard Bearer was summoned to [...]

Fonseca Says an Intensive Investigation Underway
In the allegation of the nine hundred and four thousand dollars, the matter is being litigated and a claim has been filed against him by the Coye family. But while [...]

ASR Deals Farmers a Crippling Blow
Sugar cane farmers have been dealt a crippling, and completely unexpected blow by Tate and Lyle sugars, a member of the ASR group. The terrible news came by letter dated [...]

New Schedule for Fairtrade Payments
That was the really bad news, but it gets worse. Traditionally farmers received payment for Fairtrade sugar when it was received by the company. But that’s not happening this time. [...]

Is First Caribbean Discriminating Against Garifuna Language?
There is controversy brewing tonight in Dangriga where a young woman’s job as a teller is reportedly in jeopardy after being reprimanded by her superiors for speaking her native language [...]

Garifuna Activist Dr. Theodore Aranda Lashes Out at FCIB
Earlier today, CIBC First Caribbean issued a statement in which it says that the use of official language is encouraged within the working environment as a courtesy to all its [...]

Cousins Remanded for Burglary
Two cousins were remanded to prison today after they were charged in connection with a tire shop burglary. Ninety-six tires were stolen from Quality Used Tires on Central American Boulevard [...]

Is an Alleged Murderer Hiding in Belize?
This man is Lyle “Ty” Hoffman; could he be hiding in Belize? Hoffman is the alleged triggerman in a shooting incident in Arden Hills, Minnesota, U.S.A. on August eleventh. He [...]

Gang Leader Detained for Questioning in Lemonal Murder
Tonight, there is little to report in the cruel murder of a resident of Lemonal. The body of twenty-seven year old Denvo Banner was found buried in a shallow grave [...]

No Trace of Hattieville Chairman After 6 Weeks
  The family of Denvo Banner is grieving his loss, but their grief is somewhat tempered by the comfort of closure in the tragedy. The family of missing Hattieville Chairman [...]

2nd Quarter Stats is a Mixed Bag
The Statistical Institute of Belize has released its latest economic figures corresponding to the second quarter of 2014. All be told, transportation shot up by ten percent while the basket [...]

SIB Explains Dip in Sugar Exports
As we mentioned earlier in the newscast, sugar cane farmers in the north have been dealt a serious blow by Tate & Lyle when the Belize Sugar Cane Farmers Association [...]

Clifford Hoare Brings It…And Wins Big!
The spectacular grand finale of our summer entertainment show took place on Tuesday night at the Bliss. The live broadcast of If you can Sing it, Bring It started with [...]

Yoga Dance Show Set for Sunday
A yoga dance concert and competition will be held this Sunday at the B.T.L. Park. The event is organized by Yoga Instructor Ashanti “Airbender” Garcia and is focused on bringing [...]

LOVE FM

Sad Bull Sharks’ Faith
“Concerned inhabitants who saw the shark in the area of the bridge at the Northern Entrance to town informed personnel form TIDE who went to the location and upon checking found out that body of the shark had no visible lacerations except for injuries in the mouth believed to have been caused by fishing hooks. Further inspection thereafter determined that the shark had no internal injury nor infection. Indications are that the female bull shark measuring six feet ten inches was caught as recent as one or two days ago and been dumped irresponsibly at the location where it was seen. With another smaller dead shark found in the area within the same day it is believed that the two dead sharks found so far were caught with fishing hooks and dumped in the area by an individual who had caught them within the closed shark season from August 1 to October 31.”

Statistical Institute Of Belize
“According to the Statistical Institute of Belize, the Consumer Price Index for July is 1.3% while the average inflation for the first 7 months of 2014 is at 1.5%. The food index reduced in the month of July by 3.5%. Voice 1: So the higher prices were observed in the transportation services where they increased by 10% mainly due to an increase in 24.1% in air fares, housing, water/electricity, gas and other fuels where we saw the over all expenditure category increasing by 1.3%. We had rent prices going up by 1.4%. Water prices going up by 6.9% in this category. Accommodation services increased by 6% where we had international hotel services increasing by 13.2%.” HIPOLITO NOVELO: “The highest inflation was recorded in Santa Elena/San Ignacio with 2.5% attributed to the highest inflation of rent at 4.9%. Belize City recorded the lowest at 0.8%. As for the External Trade Statistics, according to Statistician, Javan Charvarria, in the first seven months of 2014, Belize imported goods totaling $1.14 billion dollars- an increase of $68 million dollars or 6.4%. In July alone, Belize imports were valued at $184.9 million.”

Back To School Shopping
RENEE TRUJILLO: “Just over a week ago the majority of the secondary schools in the country reopened to start its new school year sessions and in just a few days, the public primary schools will resume classes for the school year 2014/2015. It is a time when a lot of children and sometimes even parents are excited and eager to begin gathering up supplies because it means shopping, it means the smell of new items like school bags and shoes and exercise books…..but while preparing for the new school year can bring some excitement, it also brings expenses. Love News recently did a few interviews downtown Belize City to find out just how parents and guardians are coping with their children’s educational expenses and how much they will be spending this school year.” INTERVIEWEE 1: “When we added up everything it came up to almost $2,000-$3,000, that is including tuition and books and everything else.” INTERVIEWEE 2: “I have a child, the youngest one going into infant 2 my other son going into second form at St. Johns and I have another daughter doing 4th Form at Palotti.”

Another storm hits the sugar cane industry
ARTURO CANTUN:” A letter straight from London based Tate and Lisle Sugars was served yesterday to the Belize Sugar Cane Farmers Association and the news is nothing good. The correspondence informs the association that because of the market vulnerability it has been forced to reduce the association’s quota from 65,000 tons to 10,000 tons. Fred Ortega is the spokesperson for the Belize Sugar Cane Farmers Association.” ALFREDO ORTEGA: “Really and truly this is bad news for the association and the industry. It will really have a negative impact to the industry but also to all the staff and the country of Belize because that means that there will be a reduction in regards to the premium that we have received from the sales of sugar under the fair trade umbrella.” ARTURO CANTUN: “Since Belize sugar has been selling under the fair trade logo the quota has been steady at 50,000 tons. Last year the quota was increased to 65,000 tons. Ortega says that he does not believe that the vulnerable market is the reason why the quota has been reduced.”

Arthur Saldivar suspended over allegations
FRANCIS FONSECA: “You have been made aware of the fact that at its meeting today of the National Executive the PUP has discussed the issue of Belize Rural North and the candidacy of Mr. Arthur Saldivar our standard bearer in that area. I want to say that we had a very robust discussion and at the end of that discussion the party took the decision that Mr. Arthur Saldivar would be suspended as a candidate for the PUP in Belize Rural North from all party activities pending the outcome of an ongoing investigation that the party is carrying out into the very serious allegation that has been made in respect of certain monies which a client of Mr. Saldivar says he took and has and has not returned to her. You are aware of the allegation the media is aware of that allegation. So that investigation has been ongoing, we expect that investigation to be concluded and a report to be delivered to myself and the National Executive by September 12 and the party will then convene a meeting of the National Executive on September 17 at which time a final decision will be made on this matter. So that was the discussion and those were the decisions taken by the party.”

Harlem Week Bestows Honors on Two Belizeans in New York, USA
A Belizean-born centenarian and a popular community advocate were among honorees during the recently-concluded Harlem Week. The Board of Directors of Harlem Week, Inc. and New York City Senior Citizen’s Committee, Inc. bestowed the honor on 105 year old Caroline Lightburn, and Verna Arthur, Manhattan Community Outreach Director and Senior Advisory Council Liaison with the New York City Department for the Aging (DFTA). Lightburn, the oldest female honored at the event, was born on Jan. 12, 1909 in San Ignacio, Cayo and grew up in Belize City. Lightburn says that she never drunk nor smoked and was a baseball player and a member of the Belize All Stars team. As a housewife, who later became a domestic worker, Lightburn said she raised nine children, four of whom are still alive. She has 21 grandchildren and 32 great grandchildren. Her late father, Joseph Ingram, was a sergeant in the Belize Police Force; and her mother, Jan Ingram, was a seamstress.

PlusTV

Nisani Garcia charges upgraded to murder
In reference to the shooting death of Hansil Elvis Garcia, a 17 year old Belizean Fisherman of Dangirga, on Wednesday August 26th, 21 year old Nisani Daniel Garcia, a baker of Rivas Estate, Dangriga, was charged with murder. On the 5th of May 2014, 17 year old Hansil, succumbed to his injuries sustained during a shooting incident on April 30th, where he sustained three gunshot wounds to the left forearm, right leg and lower left side of his back. The young fisher man had received two separate surgeries and after fighting for his life for almost a week, Hansil Garcia passed away. Dangriga police arrested and charged 21 year old Nisani Garcia for attempted murder, use of deadly means of harm and dangerous harm on May 2nd. On Tuesday, his charge was upgraded to murder.

Levy Says Saldivar Was Guest at His House
Earlier this month, An American couple, Don and Vanessa Blunt claimed that a home in Placencia that they sold to a client of Attorney at law Arthur Saldivar became a source of frustration for them. According to Don Blunt, Mr Saldivar used his clout as an officer of the court to invade his Placencia home in an effort to try and force him out before the court ordered date. Media reports claimed that the Blunts allegations included that “Police officers stormed the house along with their clients and started moving the Blunt couple’s personal belongings. He allegedly even had his posse break one of the locks of the house, which allowed him to gain entry, very much like a common thief.” The story has caused much public discussion as Arthur Saldivar is a well known Public figure vying for Public office. Last week, PlusNews received a call from Glen Levy, Sadivar’s Client, who granted us an interview on location at the disputed House in Placencia. He explained what happened that fateful night, and gave us a brief history of his real estate nightmare that started in January of this year. It started he said when he made a down payment to the Blunts to purchase their furnished home on the beach.

Extraordinary Meetings at FFB; but no one is talking
There were two big meetings Monday night and early Tuesday morning concerning all matters FFB. Reliable sources tell us that the executive members of the federation met with the FFB Congress last night, in a meeting that concluded until after 10:30 pm. It was rumoured that Ruperto Vicente would at the meeting push for the suspension of Sergio Chuc, which he had previously attempted to do. No one from FFB is talking yet, however, we have been reliably informed that no one has been suspended, however the executive members were made to renew their pledges, which was witnessed by all 8 members of the congress. The congress is to re-evaluate the executive members of the federation for the next 90 days. On Tuesday executives also met with representatives of FIFA and CONCACAF at the federation headquarters in Belmopan. The purpose of the meeting is still not known nor were we able to confirm if the two are connected in anyway. When we contacted President Ruperto Vicente on Tuesday he said he couldn’t speak on the matter at this time, but promised he would address all matters concerned in a press briefing on Wednesday.

Players say the Federation Still owes them money
There were two big meetings Monday night and early Tuesday morning concerning all matters FFB. Reliable sources tell us that the executive members of the federation met with the FFB Congress last night, in a meeting that concluded until after 10:30 pm. It was rumoured that Ruperto Vicente would at the meeting push for the suspension of Sergio Chuc, which he had previously attempted to do. No one from FFB is talking yet, however, we have been reliably informed that no one has been suspended, however the executive members were made to renew their pledges, which was witnessed by all 8 members of the congress. The congress is to re-evaluate the executive members of the federation for the next 90 days. On Tuesday executives also met with representatives of FIFA and CONCACAF at the federation headquarters in Belmopan. The purpose of the meeting is still not known nor were we able to confirm if the two are connected in anyway. When we contacted President Ruperto Vicente on Tuesday he said he couldn’t speak on the matter at this time, but promised he would address all matters concerned in a press briefing on Wednesday.

Deon and Shane Back in Belize
There are some tensions at the FFB, but in the midst of all the chaos taking place there, there is still some good news concerning Belizean football. For starters, Deon McCauley, the top striker for the Belize Jaguars, is back in the country to train with the Belizean National A Team, for the upcoming Copa Centro Americano. He told us about his experience with the Atlanta Silverbacks. Dean McCauley – Stricker for Belize National Team and Atlanta Silverbacks “So far this season I have scored five goals. I’ve played about ten games. I came in off the bench in a couple of games. I’ve played against MLS teams. I’ve been to MLS trials. It’s very good so far. When I went to Atlanta, my team accepted me very well. They welcomed me. So I gained their respect. I build a family out there with my team-mates. But here in Belize for me it’s more comfort, because I’ve been around these players a long time. I know a lot of them, and I’ve gained the respect of a lot of them. To me, being here is very comfortable for me, because I know them a lot, and I’m ready to play.” In an article written in the official Atlanta Silverbacks website, the club boasted of Deon McCauley whom they say, combined with Junior Burgos, scored 11 goals for the Silverbacks during the NASL season and the Open Cup this year. The Atlanta Silverbacks expressed their regret at having to release Dean McCauley for a little spell but wished him the best.

Patrick JonesPJ

Record GDP quarterly growth driven by agricultural rebound
The Statistical Institute of Belize (SIB) today released the latest economic data regarding estimated economic growth, the Consumer Price Index (CPI) and external trade. We begin with the big news about the economy. Between April and June the national gross domestic product (GDP) grew substantially by 8.7%, double […]

Mexican pianists to deliver international concert
The Mexican Embassy’s cultural exchange program continues on Thursday with the visit of three young but experienced pianists who will be teaming up on some classical pieces from famous composers. The trio – Carlos Camacho, Ricardo Tovar and Ricardo Moo – have extensive experience playing the piano since […]

Arthur Saldivar suspended; PUP investigates alleged wrongdoing
In an unprecedented move, the People’s United Party’s (PUP) National Executive today decided to suspend sitting Belize Rural North standard bearer and attorney Arthur Saldivar from acting in that capacity pending the results of an internal investigation into allegations of misbehavior on his part. Saldivar is accused of taking and failing […]

Computers stolen from Corozal primary school
Classes are set to resume for Primary School students on September first; but for the students and teachers of Xiabe Roman Catholic School it will not be a happy event. That is because a heartless thief or thieves decided to steal five laptop computers from the principal’s office […]

The 15 Most Romantic Belize Resorts
Wedged between Mexico and Guatemala and facing the Caribbean Sea lies Belize, a country prized by locals and tourists alike for its beautiful coastlines, tropical jungles and impressive resorts. These getaways from the hustle of everyday life are the perfect spots to unwind and take in […]

Errant link on Police Department website site serves porn
The Belize Police Department’s website link to the Jasmine Alert service is pointing internet visitors to a porn site. The error in the URL was discovered this evening by a high school student who was doing research on the Jasmine Alert program and visited the police department […]

Auditorium under construction at Muffles High School in Orange Walk
Muffles High School in Orange Walk town is in the process of constructing an auditorium for the educational instruction. Ground was broken in January of this year and the projection is for the facility to be completed in November, 2014. Principal of Muffled High School Marian Johnston […]

PUP suspends Arthur Saldivar
The main opposition People’s United Party (PUP) has taken a decision to suspend the standard bearer for the Belize Rural North constituency Arthur Saldivar. At a meeting of the PUP’s National Executive this morning, which was held at Independence Hall, Saldivar was given a chance to make presentations regarding allegations of wrongdoing and mishandling of funds, laid against him by former clients Melonie and Marlene Coye.

Blogs

Traveling South in Belize: From San Pedro to Placencia – Here’s What I Saw & Ate…
As the crow flies, I traveled about 100 miles. San Pedro on Ambergris Caye to Placencia Village. But as I often do, I took the cheaper route and it took me most of the day. Traveled from breezeless heat thru pouring rain over the mountains and then back down to the heat. There is a MUCH faster way to do it…in fact, I took that easy breezy flight down just this past June. Super convenient. My departure point yesterday was the San Pedro Belize Express water taxi. The 7:30am boat should get me to Belize City – HOPEFULLY – for the 9:15am bus from the Belize City terminal to Independence, Belize. ($24bzd each way if you have their Membership Card.)

Swimming into History – Actun Tunichil Muknal
And now, as promised, we explore another watery adventure in Belize’s Cayo District – The Actun Tunichil Muknal Cave, otherwise known as ATM, and one of most impressive day trips to be had anywhere. You’d be forgiven for thinking that cave exploration belongs more in the spelunking than the watersport category, but trust us, you will get wet exploring ATM. Delightfully, invigoratingly, adventurously wet. Sort of like a squelchy Indiana Jones. Your first wet encounter, depending on how much rain there’s been recently, will be in wading across the streams during the hike in. The original ATM explorers, recognising the potential for looting this artefact-rich underground treasure, did what they could to keep the trail in as hidden as possible, and today’s path still follows a circuitous route through the forest and across the streams. There’s even a swimming hole on the way that some hikers take advantage of to cool off in before carrying on to the big adventure.

“Bring It On, Bring It On” in San Pedro, Ambergris Caye, Belize.
In my haste (who do I think I’m kidding, I don’t do anything fast nowadays) to get the last edition “out there” I omitted (OK, so I forgot) to mention that last Friday Rose and I did the Ice Bucket Challenge. I’d been very “kindly” set the challenge by Carlo Segura (the Carlo of Carlo & Ernie’s Runway Bar & Grill) so last Friday afternoon in the heat of the afternoon sun I decided to “man up” and go take the punishment. Now up until Friday I’d thought that Carlo and I got on well. I’m not so sure now. Why? Well the bucket was huge and it was full of ice cold water and a double helping of ice cubes.

You Have To Attend The Mind As Medicine Workshop in Belize
Dr. Mark Pirtle ( Skillfully Aware) in collaboration with Michelle Ashanti Williams (Om Shanti Yoga and Reiki Center) presents: A workshop entitled “Mind as Medicine” – Stress related illnesses like insomnia, depression, anxiety, chronic pain, addictions, eating disorders and more are caused by the same unconscious mechanism: Attentional Fixation. This explains why mindfulness is a remedy for them all. Understanding the nature of mind, and how to influence it through meditation practice can provide more therapeutic benefits than any pill. This one-day workshop , limited to only 30 people, will teach participants about the mind, its connection with the body, and how meditation and mindfulness can be practiced and used as medicine. It is a blessing and an honour to have him in Belize to share his Skillfully Aware approach with us.

International Sourcesizz

Making Friends and Enjoying an Active Social Life in Belize
While living in the San Francisco Bay Area my husband and I both worked long days, and too many weekends. We rarely bumped into our neighbors, had little free time for socializing, and even less energy. We hoped that would change when we moved to Ambergris Caye, Belize--though we worried that by basing ourselves on a small island we might be in for a limited social circle. And what if it didn't suit us? It was a big unknown. Well, we've been surprised by how much our social horizons have actually expanded since our overseas move. This is an unexpected benefit of the expat life. And from what I hear from other expats based outside Belize, it holds true across the board. First of all, we now have the time and energy for an active social life. And our openness to it has been rewarded by the broad array of diverse and interesting people we've met living here. Many have become close friends. The tropical climate and genuine beauty of Ambergris Caye draws people from all over and we've met acquaintances from far flung corners of the globe.

Want to live the Caribbean dream? You'd better believe in Belize
Belize boasts ancient Mayan ruins, lush rainforests and the world’s second longest UNESCO-protected barrier reef. This year the former British colony, which used to be known as British Honduras, celebrates 50 years of self-governance. Bordered by the Caribbean, Guatemala and Mexico with a population of 330,000, Belize is around 10 times the size of Luxembourg and is ranked by the Caribbean Tourism Organization as one of the region’s fastest growing tourist destinations. Property, too, is in the ascendancy. Less known than its Caribbean island neighbours for property, Belize has lashings of desirable expat attributes including political stability, English as its first language, a currency fixed to US dollar, a British-based legal system and Commonwealth membership. It also boasts retirement advantages. Retirees, classified as being 45 years and older with an annual income of US$24,000 (£14,500), can gain residency through the Qualified Retired Persons (Incentives) program, known as QRP (cdn.gov.bz / belizeinvest.org).bz). “Although the Belize government doesn’t have the funds for a global marketing campaign, the country really has everything going for it, and various indicators put it on the cusp of becoming better known as an international property destination,” observed Ben Mason, a Belize-based British developer.

Heaven in our hemisphere
How nice it is to be the only guy sitting in the exit row of this flight! Savoring the rare luxury of leg room, I cross my right gam and rest it on my left knee. Since I’m wearing shorts, I can’t help but instantly notice the scarlet constellation on my right calf. A constellation of bites, little circular red bites, made by the dangerously stealthy and perpetually hungry no-see-ums of Belize. During the four hour flight to LAX, I have plenty of time to actually count the stars in this itchy formation (one possible name for my calfy constellation—Calamina). 55. Little sumbitches apparently found your correspondent to have excellent taste! But in the end, I must conclude that this mild discomfort is a small price to pay for my introduction to this extremely pleasant Central American country. Belize, as in puh-leeze or puh-lease, depending on your preference, is a small gem facing the Caribbean. Or Caribbean. Here are some tidbits I discovered during my week in this happy place, tidbits of positivity that intrigue those of you with passports and a desire to visit new places. I can't think of another country that is easier for us norte americanos to deal with (well, OK, Canada). The official language, remarkably enough for a country surrounded by Guatemala and Mexico, is English. How charming. The currency is the Belizean dollar, but our bucks are gladly accepted, at the rate of 2 of theirs for one of ours. And the water is absolutely off the charts crazy awesome perfect.

It’s an online war of words and granny’s winning
My 80-year-old grandmother is demolishing me at Words With Friends. That may sound adorable to you, but to someone as competitive as I am, it’s infuriating and embarrassing. Here’s a little backstory. My grandmother — whom I call Chichi (which I believe means grandmother in Mayan, but don’t quote me on that because I’m in no way an expert on the Mayan language or culture) lives in Belize, a beautiful little country in Central America. She is by no means techno-savvy. But she’s been playing Scrabble for years and years. So while she probably doesn’t even know how to set up an email account, she’s got years of Scrabble experience in her corner.

Scholarship receivers
Diplomats from Taiwan pose with students in Belize who were set to study in Taiwan on scholarships in Belize City on Aug. 23. Photo courtesy of the Embassy of the Republic of China in Belize Aug. 27, 2014

Videos

Video: Wildtracks Volunteer Programme, 1min.
Introducing Sintra, a Wildtracks volunteer. She has a dream job - supervising the young manatee calves in the new pool. During the hour exercise time, she keeps a careful eye on Lucky, ready to assist him if he has problems reaching the water surface, she has to convince the two calves that they want to exercise, building their muscles, their stamina and improving their digestion, she encourages them to focus on each other, to interact with each other...this is a small part of her day as a Wildtracks volunteer. She has sat up on night watches with them when the calves first came in, counted their breaths at 2:00 in the morning, been bitten by mosquitoes, she has scrubbed pools, been a manatee feeder...

Video: If You Can Sing It... Bring It RED CARPET FINALE (August 26, 2014), 2hr41min.

Video: BELIZE OCEAN CLUB, 2min.
We didn't get a lot of footage the first time at the Belize Ocean Club but this time, we got lots!

Video: United 737-824 landing Belize, 7min.

Video: week6 part2 filming for iservants in Belize, 11min.
There's no internet in this part of Belize... the experiment was to record every day of my life... so I just used a different camera. sorry snapchat. Show more

Video: Noah, le zip-liner le plus jeune de tout Belize, 2min.
Noah va "super fast" !!!!

Video: Belize Webinar by Save the Frogs, 41min.

Video: Belize Barrier Reef, 3min.

Video: Crooked Tree - Lamanai - Belize, 3min.
Crooked Tree Sanctuary, un oasi in Belize per il relax nella selva e il bird watching, vicinissimo dal sito Maya di Lamanai, raggiungibile con in giro in lancia.

Video: Belize EEL attack, 1min.
Belize eel attacks Renee.


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