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#498581 - 12/03/14 10:57 AM Today's Belize News: December 3, 2014
Marty Offline


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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

San Pedro Town Council issues awards as part of Township Day
On Thursday, November 27th San Pedro celebrated its 30th Anniversary of Township. To commemorate the day, the San Pedro Town Council, Mayor Daniel Guerrero and Miss San Pedro Michelle Nuñez conducted surprise visits to present awards of appreciation to several island residents that have contributed to the growth and development of the island of the years. According to Guerrero, the award is a way to show appreciation to community members, as without their support, growth in San Pedro would be stagnant. “On each Township Day, we try our best to show the community that we are grateful for all they do towards San Pedro each and every day. It is the hard work of each and every resident in this island that has contributed to the town that we know today. We hope that we continue to receive the collaboration of island residents in the years to come so that out beautiful island can continue to grow and blossom into one of the top destinations in Belize,” said Guerrero. Each certificate was hand delivered to the home or place of work of the recipients.

Legends Road House- Eat, Drink, Jam on!
Known for their Tuesday Jam Nights, Legends Road House has been serving up delicious food and great music on the island for quite some time. At just a short drive North of San Pedro Town across the Sir Barry Bowen Bridge, Legend’s is the perfect Tuesday night getaway to blow off the weekday blues. Enjoy Reggae to Rock and everything in between from the live band, or better yet step to the microphone and join in on the “jam.” Liking how this all sounds? Well, there’s more! New owner Trish has brought her Southern charm to the old Road House, and her Southern hospitality and delicious family recipes surely have transcended into her new menu. Enjoy the best of smoked meats from tender beef, pork ribs and chicken to juicy burgers loaded with premium patties, and much, much more. Gather with a group of friends and enjoy the rockin’ atmosphere over cold Belikins and don’t forget to try their signature “moonshine” shots in flavors like coconut and apple pie.

Where the Heck is Bob?
Travelling is always a great adventure, especially when it means experiencing the things and places that you love. For 34 year old island athlete Kent Bob Gabourel, travelling is an opportunity he is most thankful for and as of recently he’s been racking up the air miles! And for what better reason than doing what he loves most- sports! Quite some travelling right?! Just when we thought we had our Bob home for a while, we now find him in South America! Bob is currently in Cuenca Ecuador, where he is participating in a training seminar for triathlon coaches and junior triathlon training camp. “I’m learning from other coaches, techniques and training methods, and I’m teaching younger athletes what I already know and what I’ve learned,” said Gabourel. Apart from the seminar, as always Bob is taking the opportunity to immerse himself fully in the new travel experience, visiting local trails and sites and enjoying local cuisine. We follow his posts on Facebook, many of which are hilarious and can only admire his enthusiasm for every experience he gets into. He truly is an exemplary sports ambassador for Belize!

Ambergris Today

Rain Restaurant & Rooftop Terrace Holds Opening Dinner
With an exotic menu featuring Mediterranean, Basque and Argentinean cuisine, Rain Restaurant & Rooftop Terrace is not only featuring amazing new flavors, but also providing a great new ambience in which to experience a delightful meal. Located on the third floor of a newly constructed building at Grand Caribe Resort two miles north of San Pedro Town, over the bridge, Rain officially opened its doors on November 15, 2014 and invited the public to a special menu put together for the special occasion. The restaurant offer a semi-formal dining experience on the third floor, but if you are up for a more casual atmosphere, you can dine on the rooftop terrace that also stays open after 10p.m. where you can enjoy a few cocktails while enjoying the 360 degree views with glass walls for unobstructed views of the reef and lagoon.

Gas prices
Gas prices are starting to go down on Ambergris Caye. Regular is down to $10.92 per gallon!!!Merry Christmas.

Pic of the Week: A Bike Ride Along Beaches of Ambergris Caye
The weather has been 'not-so-great' the past few weeks on Ambergris Caye, Belize. Well, it's been chilly (not cold in the eyes of many northerners who are in sub-zero climate) and it has been raining a lot lately. Cold fronts are coming down from North America and gloomy clouds hover above. But that is not to say that tourists will not find something to do and entertain themselves. Heck! They are in paradise and they are on vacation. Making the most of a gloomy day, this young girl and her parents (with a friendly tag-along pet) rented out bicycles to do some exploring on the beach. Taking a ride along the beaches of Ambergris Caye is a great idea to get a feeling of the island and discover hidden hotspots that are not necessarily visible on the main road.

TMM Charters Donates Computer to Kick Off Saga Humane Education Program
TMM Yacht Charters of San Pedro, Ambergris Caye, Belize, has donated a HP Pavilion Entertainment Notebook PC to be used at the San Pedro Roman Catholic School computer classes to highlight Humane Education for over 800 students. The Saga Humane Education program, lead by Sandie Betz-Eisenberg, Cindy Kyles and her service dog Sheila, has been successfully educating the children of Ambergris Caye with a revitalized learning program since September of this year. The Humane Education Team has presented to Ambergris Caye Elementary School, Island Academy and ABC Pre-School in the last few months, spreading the word about the Basics of Pet Care - students learn about their pet's basic needs, as well as the importance of safety around animals and respecting animals. The students learn the importance of the human-animal bond and why proper animal treatment is very important, and Pet Overpopulation – such as the issue of pet overpopulation, its root cause and the Saga Spay/Neuter Initiative Program (SNIP): “It’s Hip To Snip!”.

Misc Belizean Sourcesmzz

Ministry of Health with Supporting Partners to Conduct Workshop for a National Laboratory Policy
The Caribbean Med Lab Foundation (CMLF) supported by the Global Fund Project in collaboration with the Ministry of Health and the Belize Bureau of Standards will be conducting a workshop to develop a National Laboratory Policy and Regulatory Framework for Belize on the 3rd and 4th December 2014 at the Radisson Fort George Hotel in Belize City. An official ceremony to open the workshop will commence at 8:30am on the 3rd December, 2014.

Belize & Grenada start ‘AccessCSME
Belize and Jamaica this week started a series of workplace public education series on the CARICOM Single Market targeting employees on the frontline of CSME action and response, and select private sector groups. Dubbed AccessCSME – The Workplace Edition, the series is led by the CSME focal point in each country. Today, December 1, the first of several Grenada ‘AccessCSME’ Workpace sessions was hosted by the Grenada Industrial Development Corporation (GIDC), Grenada’s Investment Promotion and Business Development Agency. Some 15 officers of GIDC participated. The Resource panel comprised:Inspector Leroy Joseph – Immigration expert; Mr. Che Phillip – Senior Foreign Service Officer/ Head of the CARICOM Desk,Ministry of Foreign Affairs; Mrs. Dunnaliz Commodore – Foreign Service Officer, responsible for CSME

What you can do to help the Scarlet Macaw population in Belize!
Season’s Greetings. For the past five years FCD has been conducting bio-monitoring of scarlet macaws with the aim of protecting the limited population of scarlet macaws left in Belize against the pet trade. With the Forest Department approval, FCD with multiple other partners will aim to add in a new component to the conservation of macaws, namely a lab rearing of at risk chicks with the purpose of increasing the probabilities of having more birds fly wild and free and restock the macaw population. To do this FCD is launching a strategy to obtain the funds to have local lab technicians trained, a laboratory, equipment and a flight cage in operation by March 2015. The facility will be constructed at Las Cuevas Research Station which is located in the heart of the Chiquibul Forest. To learn more of this program and how you can support contact: fcd@btl.net, ipaquetdurand@gmail.com, charlesbritt@gmail.com, matola@belizezoo.org

Belize Officially Hands Over Pro-Tempore Presidency of COMISCA to Guatemala
Following two days of regional discussions at the XLI Ordinary Meeting of the Council of Ministers of Health of Central America and the Dominican Republic (COMISCA), Minister of Health Hon. Pablo Marin today officially transferred the Pro-tempore Presidency of COMISCA to the Minister of Health of Guatemala Luis Enrique Monterroso, who will now serve for the next six months.

Prime Minister Hon. Dean Barrow Departs the Country Today
Government of Belize Press Office

Lighting of the Christmas Tree!
Mayor Daniel Guerrero, the San Pedro Town Council and Staff invites everyone to the Central Park, today, Wednesday, December 3rd at the Central Park at 7:30 p.m. for the lighting of the Christmas Tree! Bring the whole family! Take your pictures in front of the tree! There will be refreshments and music! Heaven's Voice Youth Choir will also be joining us with some Christmas Carols! See you there!

Corozal Rotary will be holding an Art Auction
Support a worthy cause on Friday December 12th as Corozal Rotary will be holding an Art Auction with proceeds going to the Rotary Scholarship Fund.

Channel 7

Major Police Security Breach Via Lost Special Branch Flash Drive
By now the whole world knows about the Edward Snowden files -the former NSA employee who revealed the inner workings of the entire United States surveillance apparatus. And he did it with the use of flash drives, those handy data storage devices that so many of us use to store work and personal data. And tonight, one of these flash drives has caused an enormous security breach right here in Belize. 7News has learned that a flash drive belonging to a police officer in the Belize City Special Branch Office has made its way unto the streets. No one can say for sure whether the officer misplaced it or if it was stolen - but the loss is causing alarm in security circles.

KHMH Special Audit Reveals Odd Acquisition of X-Ray
Since mid-year, we've been reporting on the questionable circumstances surrounding the acquisition of two X-Ray units at the KHMH. The Board of Directors called in the Office of the Auditor General to perform a special audit. This was finalized in late October and tonight, 7News has obtained a copy of the 77page document. It's quite comprehensive and covers a number of irregularities - so tonight we will be covering just the first part of it - dealing with the X-Ray units. Jules Vasquez has been reviewing the audit:.. Jules Vasquez reporting The special audit report covers the year from July 2013 to July 2014. 49 of the 77 pages deal with the acquisition of a Siemens Luminos RF Classic X Ray Machine. We got this picture from the internet - because - as the time of the audit - the one at KHMH is still in eight boxes. And why is that? Well, the audit found that even though it was acquired in May - the boxes were simply unloaded into a room and left there.

Police Arrest Minor For Shots Fired In City
Shots were fired in Belize City this afternoon. It happened at the corner of Sarstoon and Nargusta Streets in the Lake Independence area where a string of shots were fired around 12:30 pm. Fortunately no one was hurt - and by all indications, it was just a random shooting by a trigger happy individual. But, in this case, that trigger-happy person turns out to be a teenager. Police detained a 15 year old minor after the shooting - and he is being held pending charges.

How To Get Government To Pay Your December Mortgage
In his Independence Day speech back in September -Prime Minister Dean Barrow promised middle class relief by making mortgage payments for December. Well, December is here, and today the details of the programme were announced. First of all, not everyone qualifies. First off, the original value of your mortgage has to be no more than one hundred thousand dollars. Secondly, your loan can be from any of the commercial banks, the national bank, the credit unions, the DFC or Social Security.

PM To Cuba
And while that program rolls out form his ministry, the Prime Minister left the country today to attend the CARICOM- Cuba Summit in Havana, Cuba. Discussions at this summit will focus on economic and other developmental issues plaguing member states. But first, the Prime Minister will travel to Atlanta, Georgia on personal leave. He returns on Tuesday, December 9th. In his absence Deputy Gaspar Vega will act as Prime Minister.

Bregal Family Disputes Police Account
Last night we reported about Lionel Bregal -the man Ladyville police are accusing of participating in the jewelry heist in which 390 thousand dollars' worth of jewelry was stolen from the Roe's residence in Ladyville. Bregal is out on bail after being arraigned yesterday. Police reported that a Rolex watch case was found at Bregal's residence in Belize City - which is the source of the charge. But today in an interview with Bregal's mother, she said that police did not find a Rolex watch case at her son's residence. In fact, she showed us his charge sheet which stated that Bregal was charged with handling stolen good for a bag which values only 20 Belize dollars.

Convicted Man Gets Bail
54 year-old Jamaican Delroy Chambers was sentenced to 5 years in jail for a drug trafficking and firearm offences in October, but tonight, he's at home after only 72 days behind bars because he has started the process of appealing his case. As we told you, Chambers was convicted of being in possession of drugs and a loaded weapon. Officers from Special Branch testified in his criminal trial a few months ago. They told the court that they searched his house on October 12, 2013 and they ended up finding 1.5 kilos - or 3.3 pounds of weed, a 9 millimeter pistol, and 9 live rounds of ammunition. As a result, police arrested and charged him with drug trafficking, keeping an unlicensed firearm, keeping unlicensed ammunition, and drug trafficking.

After Bumpy Start, Cruise Season Cruising Along
And it's back on track for Cruise Line operators. Last week we reported on the two day cancellation of cruise ships due to unfavorable weather. Well today Director of the Cruise and Regional Initiative for BTB, Valdemar Andrade expressed his relief about the restoration of normalcy in cruise operations and his expectations for the rest of the year. Valdemar Andrade, Director Cruise & Regional Initiative, BTB "In terms of an update, you can say that the weather is much better this week. Today we have two ships in port, tomorrow we are schedule to now have 4 and 3 ships days. I have to report that this week we had ships on Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday, Thursday and we will have ships on Saturday as well. So we are making up for those numbers very quickly and so we now are in the full swing of high season, again, pending the weather. I don't foresee that we should have any of those major issues in the near future and of course we continue to look at what the options are for the future. I have to report that even in overnight our numbers are looking very good. This year we should hit the 300 thousand passenger mark in overnight tourism, by the end of December we should be there, we are a little bit ways off and that would be very historic for us here in Belize." One million Cruise visitors are expected this year.

JL's Wants SSB Data For Credit Database
JL's Quick Loan - it's been established for decades and is well known. But less known is a subsidiary company in the JL's group called Credit Master systems. In that enterprise, JL's co-founder Maurice Underwood, has come up with a credit rating system for Belize. You may know about the American version of credit history. It's a centralized system where the banks and lending institutions have a database used to gauge credit history and determine the risks of lending money to a potential customer. Well, Underwood has developed a system for JL's which he says has been used by other business. It keeps track of all customers and their commitment to pay back loans and pay for items they've purchased on credit. It is basically used to determine who "malpago" customers or the hard pay starts are. But now, he says that he's a snag because the system's database is growing at a rate which his employees can't keep up with.

BSCFA and BSI Back to The Negotiating Table
Tomorrow, the Belize Sugar Cane Farmers Association will meet with ASR/BSI in Orange Walk Town to resume negotiations. The association is hopeful that tomorrow's meeting will yield results and finally allow for the cane farmers and factory owners to prepare for the start of the crop season, planned for next week Monday. The 18 Branch Directors for the BSCFA met with the negotiating team in Corozal Town today so that they can plan for tomorrow's meeting. Even though the time is short, the association still believes that there is enough time to ensure that the crop starts on time next week.

Shoplifter Remanded After Petty Theft
He is accused of stealing 42 dollars' worth of items from a gas station, but tonight, 47 year-old Tony Rowland is behind bars. The theft happened at the UNO Gas Station on Youth for the Future Drive yesterday. Rowland was reportedly caught by police officers as he tried to swipe 4 injector cleaners and stow them way. Officers charged him with theft, and he was arraigned today before the Chief Magistrate, Ann Marie Smith. He pleaded not guilty and was given a bail of $500. The problem is however that he couldn't meet bail, and so, he had to be taken up to jail this evening. He will remain there until he is able to make arrangements for it.

Santa Came On A Cruise
The Santa Claus story tells us that his reindeer fly him from house to house on his sleigh to plant gifts under Christmas trees. Well today in Belize City that narrative changed somewhat as Santa arrived in Belize on the Norwegian Jewels Cruise Ship. Over 100 Belizean children were present at the Belize Tourism Boards Annual Christmas Party held at the House of Culture. It was a bright start for these children and they expressed their gratitude for this pre-Christmas bash. Courtney Weatherburne reporting Christmas came early for these children today when Santa Claus arrived and distributed gifts. This treat is the Norwegian Jewel's way of making the Christmas season a bit more special for these kids. Sandra Franklin, Human Resources Director, Norwegian Jewel "Today we are partnering with an organization, the cruise industry and we do this every year to bring cheer to some of the communities that we work with and last year we were in Roatan and we are very happy to be doing Belize this year. We know that it's just a small token, but we hope that it will bring cheer to the children."

Hon. Briceno's Driver Exhumed
Who's the baby's father? It's an ageless question for which there are many paternal disputes. Ordinarily they end up in in a lab where DNA tests are done. But, the case of the late Anthony Gillett went to his grave site 3 weeks ago when his family applied to the Supreme Court to have his body exhumed. It's a very rare occurrence for a loved one's body to dug up from the grave, but this became necessary because the family is trying to determine whether or not Gillett is the father of a baby which he claimed as his own before his death. We understand that it is an internal family dispute over his estate, specifically, his house. And so they needed a posthumous DNA sample. Gillett was the driver of PUP Orange Walk Central Area Representative John Briceno.

SICA Health Ministers Met
Today the 41st Ordinary Meeting of the Council of Ministries of Health of Central America and the Dominican Republic conclude din San PEdro. Key areas of concern in health such as Chronic Renal Diseases, Chikungunya and Ebola were discussed as well as the strategic plan of COMISCA. Apart from discussions, Hon. Pablo Marin, Minister of Health officially transferred the Pro-tempore Presidency to Guatemalan Minster of Health Luis Enrique Monterroso. He will serve for the next 6 months.

At OCEANA, The Doctor Is In
Marine Scientist from Toledo Dr. Isani Chan has joined Oceana. The Punta Gorda native has an impressive educational background: he holds doctoral degrees in both Marine Biology and Philosophy from the National Taiwan Ocean University as well as a Bachelor's Degree in Natural Resources Management from the University of Belize. For the past 8 years, he has been working in Taiwan in the field of natural resource management and conservation. Chan has also worked as a Marine Biologist for the Coastal Zone Management Authority and Institute and as a Fisheries Officer and Marine Biologist at the Bacalar Chico National Park and Marine Reserve for the Belize Fisheries Department. His most recent projects include studies on the impact of polluted environments on coral as well as the population and growth of the Queen Conch.

What Watina Meant
Today, Andy Vivian Palacio would have been 54. He was at the height of his fame as Garifuna musician and performer when he died 6 years ago from a stroke. But, his legend endures and continues to grow. The centerpiece of that is his master album Watina - the crystallization of the finest aspects of his music. In 2008, we looked at all he accomplished with that:.. Posted (January 18, 2008) Jules Vasquez Reporting, The Watina album was recorded in Hopkins, where Andy Palacio teamed up with Garifuna musicians to create a sound that was at once soulful and authentic, while making it polished and sufficiently sonically sophisticated to catch the ear of the world music audience. With the Watina album he rocketed to international stardom - and took Belize with him. The album won a WOMEX Award and Watina was acclaimed as the best world music album of 2007. But more than commercial and critical success - Andy's crowning achievement in 2007 was his designation as an UNESCO Artist for Peace - a global distinction afforded to few So 11 months after its release, the accomplishment of Watina stands alone, singular, unparalleled, unprecedented - and it may be so for many years

Police Running For Peace
A Law Enforcement Torch Run commenced in THE Corozal District. The run STARTED at the Corozal Free Zone with (15) police Officers, (10) BDF Soldiers (2) high Schools and (1) primary school. The torch run will BE STAGED from Corozal to Belize City and conclude at the Special Olympic ceremonies in Belmopan City.

Channel 5

Still no resolution in dispute between BSCFA and ASR/BSI
The 2014 sugar crop is programmed to begin next week Monday, that’s six days away but there is still no resolution to the dispute between the Belize Sugar Cane Farmers [...]

Cansino says all efforts will be made to avoid taking the matter to the streets
While there is optimism and a willingness by B.S.C.F.A. to compromise, there is also a real possibility that things won’t end favorably, as has been the case in the past [...]

No one charged in connection with the execution of twenty-five year old Kenroy Parham
No one has been charged in connection with the execution of twenty-five year old Kenroy Parham. That’s the latest coming out of police today as investigations continue into the murder [...]

Do you support a demonstration by cane farmers who have been unable to resolve their dispute with ASR/B.S.I.?
And our question for tonight is: Do you support a demonstration by cane farmers who have been unable to resolve their dispute with ASR/B.S.I.? Send your comments and responses using [...]

Prime Minister leaves country to take part in CARICOM-Cuba Summit
The Office of the Prime Minister announced today that the PM will be away from the country until December ninth.  PM Barrow departed today for Atlanta, Georgia on personal time. [...]

Four police officer in the south are under intense scrutiny for allegedly stealing lumber
News Five understands that at least four police officers in the south are under intense scrutiny because it is believed they are part of a ring of lumber thieves. According [...]

Ensfield Reyes sentenced to eighteen months in prison
A Belize City businessman, who back in April 2013 assaulted his wife with his licensed firearm, was found guilty of one count of Aggravated Assault with a Firearm upon Bernadette [...]

Bowen & Bowen employees held at gun point
With Christmas just three weeks away, robberies and burglaries are likely to peak. On Monday around mid afternoon, a thirty-six year-old driver for Bowen and Bowen and two of his [...]

BTB says things are back on track in the Cruise ship industry
After a shaky start last week, the tourism high season is picking up. Last week, bad weather conditions caused the cancellation of a number of cruise ships triggering huge financial [...]

BTB looks at long term options for Cruise ship docking facilities
Last week’s cancellations caused by weather conditions, highlighted the desperate need for a docking facility.  The Director of Cruise and Regional Operations for B.T.B. says they are looking at the [...]

UDP chairman Alberto August & standard bearer John August allegedly asks councilors to step down
While the abrupt resignation of Joseph Mahmud from the House of Representatives has forced a bye-election in Cayo North, internal squabbling within the Santa Familia village council has resulted in [...]

Application forms for residential mortgage payment program now available
With government rolling in millions of dollars, at least two hundred and fifty million, in Petrocaribe funds, the Barrow Administration is making on a promise made on Independence Day to [...]

Anthony “Tutch” Gillett body is exhumed to perform DNA test
Anthony “Tutch” Gillett is the former driver of Orange Walk area representative, John Briceño. He died years ago, but two weeks ago, his body was exhumed from the Orange Walk [...]

“Legends of Belize” features Belizean Mythical Creatures
Have you heard about the Tata Duende, la Llorona and the Xtabai? These are all mythical renowned creatures that have been part of the intangible traditional culture of northern Belize, [...]

Documentary to be made on Tata Duende
Since Saturday, the couple has been in Belize to promote the series, but surprisingly, they were also contacted by an investigative reporter from out of Canada. The production company wanted [...]

Costa Rican Ambassador says he believes in actions and not only words
On Monday, Costa Rica celebrated its sixty-sixth anniversary of the abolition of its military. We spoke to the Costa Rican ambassador, Edgar Garcia Miranda about that milestone that has allowed [...]

Florida Cruise Lines Association hosts Annual Christmas Party for the less fortunate children in Belize
At the House of Culture, Christmas came early for hundreds of children. We found them having fun enjoying goodies, food and games. The annual Christmas party, which has now become [...]

Belizean Musician remembered on his birthday
It has been six years since the untimely passing of iconic Belizean musician and UNESCO Artist for Peace Andy Palacio.  While the Garifuna community at home and abroad is still [...]

CTV3

Rehabiliation Of Belize/Corozal Road Not Meeting Its Standards
The Petro Caribe funded rehabilitation of the Belize Corozal Road continues to be the topic of discussion for many here in Orange Walk Town. And while it has been a welcomed movement to drive on the freshly paved roads, the project has seen its fair share of depreciation over the course of weeks since the end of the first phase. One particular area of concern is this stretch of road which from what you could see, the paved road has caved in leaving a rather large pothole, but intact. And while we have drilled the Deputy Prime Minister on his nephew’s contract works, he has gone to state that he (Hernandez) is one of the best contractors in the country. Whether that sentiment is true, we have yet to see since in this case his “works speak louder than words”.

Criteria Set For Mortgage Payment Plan Offered By Government Of Belize
In his 2014 Independence Day speech the Prime Minister of Belize announced that Government will meet the interest payment for the month of December 2014 on all home mortgages in the country with an original value of up to 100 thousand dollars. News tonight is that Cabinet has approved criteria for qualifying under the GOB’s newest program. In its five point criteria, the Cabinet approved that the assistance will apply to all barrowers from the National Bank, commercial banks, credit unions, Development Finance Cooperation, and the Social Security Board. Secondly the mortgages must be residential no more than one hundred thousand dollars. Thirdly, on mortgages for new home construction will qualify; fourth, mortgages for home improvements will not qualify. And lastly, all mortgages must be legally registered and not merely the deposits of title deeds which are called “Equitable Mortgages”.

BSI/ASR Says They Are Ready To Commence Operations For Crop 2014/2015
The Belize Sugar Cane Farmers Association and BSI representatives are scheduled to meet tomorrow as all stakeholders in the sugar industry wait anxiously for the impasse to be lifted. Whether BSI is going back to the negotiating table is not clear, but they have committed to meet tomorrow at the BSI Staff club at nine thirty with the negotiating committee, branch directors and the BSCFA’s Committee of Management. This follows a string of meetings that begun over a year ago and have not given much results. The fact is that stakeholders in the industry find themselves in pretty much the same situation as one year ago when the negotiations hit a deadlock. In a very similar fashion, the Prime Minister and even the Deputy Prime Minister have come back into the picture to help mediate the situation into a positive resolution.

How Long Will Petrocaribe Last With Oil Prices Going Down?
While the Petrocaribe money seems to be all the rage these days in the media, hundreds of millions of dollars are being pumped into the Governments public purse to be used for poverty alleviation, human and social development. And while the Government is boasting and banking on several infrastructural works and facilities to benefit Belizeans, much is being said about the uncertainty about the future of the energy accord in light of a deteriorating political, economic and oil sector situation in Venezuela, which creates a great risk for countries dependent on the subsidized oil. Will Petrocaribe disappear any time soon? How much support does the alliance have in Venezuela today? What countries would be most affected by a weakening or end to the program, and what should member countries be doing to prepare themselves for a potential end to the energy alliance? These are all legitimate questions that shroud the Petrocaribe Alliance and international media are reporting the disappointing outcome of the 166th meeting of the Organization of Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC) held in Vienna, Austria, on November 27, 2014.


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#498582 - 12/03/14 10:58 AM Re: Today's Belize News: December 3, 2014 [Re: Marty]
Marty Offline

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LOVE FM

Canaan Students Compete In Sagicor Visionaries Challenge
Tomorrow high schools from across the country will compete in the Sagicor Visionaries Challenge- a competition that seeks to test the student’s innovative minds. The students of Canaan SDS High School are ready for tomorrow and today we dropped by to learn about their electromagnetic generator ventilation system. With a bicycle frame, some electrical wires, a car battery, a car alternator, a house fan and an inverter the students of Canaan SDS High School made an electromagnetic generator ventilation system. STUDENT “Simply the student just needs to ride the bike like a normal bike, pedals it and then when the student pedals the bike the mechanical energy that the student creates goes down to the alternator which then the alternator rotate making the alternator functionable which means making electricity. Then that electricity flows down to the12 volts battery and then that battery is used by the alternator and from there it goes down to the inverter and the inverter inverts the 12 volts into a 110 volts that any household appliances use and in this case we pick to use the fan. The battery lasts up to 120 minutes which is two class periods approximately.”

Man Charged For Shop-Lifting
57-year-old Tony Rowland, who allegedly shop-lifted four injector cleaners from Uno Gas Station, located on Youth For The Future Drive, was charged with theft when he appeared today before the Chief Magistrate, Anne Marie Smith. Rowland plead not guilty to the charge. He was offered a bail of five hundred dollars and his case was adjourned until February 17, 2015. But Rowland was unable to meet bail so he was remanded to prison. The incident occurred yesterday. Police reported that Rowland was seen putting the injector cleaners in a bag. He was detained and was handed over to the police when they arrived. The cleaners have a value of forty two dollars.

Education Conference Highlights Detrimental Factors in Belize
Caribbean Union of Teachers (C-U-T)/ Belize National Teachers Union (BNTU)/ Education International (EI) are hosting a three day Education Conference at the Best Western Biltmore Hotel hosted by The Belize National Teachers’ Union with their theme “Embracing Opportunities in Education and Defending Trade Unionism. The Program is geared towards finding the similar problems that Belize and the other Caribbean Countries are facing the education system. Love News spoke to Caribbean Union of Teachers (C-U-T) President, Marvin Andall, who told us more on the Education Conference and the problems that the Caribbean Nations are looking on together to surmount. MARVIN ANDALL “We have here the sixth education conference of the Caribbean Union of Teachers held here in Belize, hosted by the Belize National Teachers Union. It is a coming together of teachers unions especially the leadership of those unions from across the Caribbean to discuss pertinent issues in education as it affects teachers and the improvement of the education system in the various territories including Belize.

Guatemalan Waitresses Charged With Illegal Entry
33-year-old, Sylvia Arias, and 25-year-old, Rosa Velasquez, two Guatemalan waitresses from Puerto Barrios, were each fined one thousand dollars today when they appeared before Magistrate Hettie Mae Stuart and plead guilty to charges of illegal entry. They were ordered to pay the fines forthwith. If they default on payment they will serve six months. Magistrate Stuart explained to them that an order has been made for their removal which will be done either after they have served the time or paid the fine. Arias and Velasquez were busted on December 1 when police stopped a passenger bus they were in at a police check point at mile four on the George Price Highway. Arias and Velasquez were unable to produce any travel document so they were handed over to immigration officers. They were interviewed by the officers and the interview revealed that they entered Belize via the banks of the Mopan River and they were on their way to Bella Vista.

Belizean Marine Scientist Joins Oceana
Oceana announced today that Belizean Marine Scientist, Dr. Isani Chan, will be joining their team. Dr. Chan officially becomes part of Oceana tomorrow. He is originally from Punta Gorda and his expertise is expected to bolster Oceana’s efforts to protect Belize’s precious marine resources. Chan holds doctoral degrees in both Marine Biology and Philosophy from the National Taiwan Ocean University in Taiwan as well as a Bachelor’s Degree in Natural Resource Management from the University of Belize. Before moving back to Belize, he was in Taiwan in the field of natural resource management and conservation. He once worked as a Marine Biologist for the Coastal Zone Management Authority and Institute and as a Fisheries Officer and Marine Biologist at the Bacalar Chico National Park and Marine Reserve for the Belize Fisheries Department.

Belize Hands Guatemala Pro-Tempore Presidency
Belize has officially handed over the Pro-Tempore Presidency of the Council of Ministers of Health of Central America and the Dominican Republic (COMISCA), to Guatemala. This occurred after a two day regional discussion at the 41st Ordinary Meeting. Belize’s Minister of Health, Pablo Marin, was held the post before passing it on to Guatemala’s Health Minister, Luis Enrique Monterroso, who will now serve for the next six months. Under his term, Marin faced several challenges including Ebola and Chikungunya- both which were addressed. The ordinary meeting took place yesterday and today at the Banyan Bay Resort in San Pedro Town.

GOB Easing Mortgages In December
Independence Day 2014 saw the announcement from the Prime Minister that the Government would be easing mortgage owners by paying the mortgage interest for the month of December. Well, December is upon us and as promised by the Prime Minister Barrow, that mortgage program is now being offered. Ofcourse, there are some conditions to adhere to in order to qualify and then there is the application form that needs to be filled out, if you are interested in capitalizing on this offer. According to a release from the Ministry of Finance, the following criteria have been approved by Cabinet. First of all, the assistance applies to borrowers at the National Bank, the commercial banks, credit unions, the Development Finance Corporation and the Belize Social Security Board. Mortgage owners original loan amount has to be for one hundred thousand dollars or less and the mortgage loan has to be for new home construction; in other words, if you went back into the bank to do home improvements, thereby adjusting the principal in any way, you would not qualify. Application forms are also available at the website for the ministry of finance at www.mof.gov.bz .

Andrade Speaks on Need For Berthering Facility
Last week Belize lost more than a million dollars after four cruise ships turned around with its passengers after the rough waters made it impossible to tender the tourists to land. Recent events have brought into sharp perspective as to why there is a need of a berthing facility. According to the Director Cruise & Regional Initiative of the Belize Tourism Board, Valdemar Andrade, Belize is months away from having such a facility in place: VALDEMAR ANDRADE “The perspective of the BTB is very straight forward. We have always recommended that there is a need for the docking facility because of the great growth of the cruise tourism industry and that is a testament to the job that the BTB has done in terms of marketing the destination, partnering with the Florida and Caribbean Cruise Association and all the relevant stakeholders both with the Forts Street tourism village and also with the independent stakeholders we have to work in the cruise industry to create a better destination and so as we go doing that we will have more and more cruise lines that will be visiting Belize.

BSI And BSCFA Negotiates Sugar Can Crop Season 2015
The Belize Sugar Cane Farmers Association and Belize Sugar Industries, BSI, are set to meet tomorrow morning in Orange Walk to resume negotiations and thus give way to the start of the 2014/2015 sugar cane crop season. A meeting was held in Corozal Town today where the BSCFA met to prepare for the negotiations. Arturo Cantún was there and has the details. ARTURO CANTUN F”ollowing last week’s meeting between BSI, BSCFA and the government of Belize, today BSI informed it is ready to go back to the negotiating table. The 18 directors and the negotiating team of the BSCFA met in Corozal Town today to plan for tomorrow’s meeting.Chairman of the BSCFA, Ezekiel Cansino did not give details about what was discussed in the meeting but told us that the BSCFA’s position remains strong and determined.” EZEKIEL CANSINO “I don’t want to discuss or talk about the decision or the strategies that we will be giving to BSI.” ARTURO CANTUN “Basically your position remains the same ?” EZEKIEL CANSINO “Just like we said we are trying to be flexible and we are getting a proposal to present to BSI and we are hoping that BSI can be flexible also and go through this impasse.”

Launch For Violence Against Women: Preparations in Progress
Officials of the Women’s Department are meeting today at the Best Western Belize Biltmore Hotel. Ava Pennill, Director of Women’s Department, told us that they are in the preparation process for the launching of the BA1: Prevention of Violence against Women in Central America Program focusing on how to deal with violence against women. AVA PENNILL “We are doing some preparatory work for the BA 1 project which is a prevention of violence against women in central America. It is a project which is done through SICA. The project aims to address violence against women, femicide and trafficking of women as well. The project will look at supporting systems so that they can look at women who experience this type of violence and also to provide safe spaces or protection for victims of this type of violence. We’re looking at several areas, we are looking at strengthening systems that already exist, looking at how different players work together like how the social workers, the police, the education, the community people; how do they work together, how do they communicate, how do we strengthen that so that women do not fall between the cracks.

Prime Minister Leaves Belize To Attend CARICOM Summit
Prime Minister Dean Barrow left the country today to attend the CARICOM Cuba summit that will take place in Havana, Cuba. The Prime Minister will stop off in Atlanta, Georgia USA for personal leave before heading on to Cuba. He is expected to return to the country next Tuesday. During his absence Deputy Prime, Minister Gaspar Vega, will act as Prime Minister.

PlusTV

Santa Elena Home shot at, no one injured
There was a shooting in Santa Elena on Monday afternoon, December 1. 31-year-old Calix Cruz, a Belizean Laborer of  Santa Elena Town, Cayo District, reported that while at home sleeping, he heard what sounded like a gunshot in front of his house...

Four Charged for Immigration Offences
2 Belizean residents were arraigned in court for allegedly hiding 2 Cuban Nationals who entered Belize illegally. The two Cubans are 29 year-old Jolkies Guerra and 27 year-old Jaima Aldana. Police intercepted the Cubans in a car and, after questioning, they admitted to police that they entered Beliz...

More illegal entrants to be deported
A pair of Guatemalan waitresses were caught in the country after illegally entering through the Mopan River, en route to the suburban neighborhood of Bella Vista in Belize City. Thirty-three year old Sylvia Arias and 25 year old Rosa Velasquez, both from Puerto Barrios, were each fined $1,000 on Tue...

Drug Trafficking charges
On Monday December 1, police were conducting mobile patrol on Kraal Road, Belize City when they saw a man of dark complexion with a Black Jacket over his shoulder. When the man saw the cops, he allegedly dropped the Jacket and ran off...

Sentenced to 5 year jail term but on bail after two months
54 year old Jamaican national, Delroy Chambers, was convicted two months ago for firearm, ammunition and drug trafficking and was sentenced to two to five years in prison...

Accused shoplifter in Court
Fifty-seven year old Tony Rowland, who allegedly shop-lifted 4 injector cleaners from the convenience store at Uno Gas Station on Youth For The Future Drive, Belize City, pleaded not guilty to a charge of theft, when he appeared on Tuesday before the Chief Magistrate, Anne Marie Smith. Tony Rowland ...

Ammunition Believed To Be Gang Property Discovered
Ammunition believed to be the property of the PIV gang were found in an abandoned lot in Belize City. According to reports, GSU were tipped off and searched the lot situated at the corner of Flamboyant Street and Croton Lane . In a plastic bag , they discovered 60 rounds of 5...

Fine for amputee accused over cannabis
Last Friday Alton White, aged 50, a taxi driver and food vendor, was successfully able to reduce a charge of drug trafficking against himself and common-law wife Idolly Fraser to drug possession. He says that the 119 grams of cannabis found by members of the Gang Suppression Unit (GSU) at his home i...

Andy P would have been 54 on Tuesday
The legendary Andy Palacio died in 2008 of  a stroke. His music lives on and the man himself has not been forgotten. Tuesday would have marked Palacio’s 54th birthday, and commemorative masses were held in various locations. Those who have not forgotten the musical icon and wanted to pay their re...

Amandala

Roger and Kendis of Ghost Town get Supreme Court bail
Two men who are alleged members of the Ghost Town Crips gang who were remanded to prison on charges of attempted murder and illegal firearm and ammunition possession were released on Supreme Court bail this morning after their bail application was heard before Justice Denis Hanomansingh. Roger Anthony, 37, the reputed leader of the gang, who had renounced his gang leadership in October in a media ceremony at which he appeared in the company of the head of the Gang Suppression Unit, and Kendis Flowers, 23, who is said to be Anthony’s right-hand lieutenant, were both released on a $5,000 bail plus one surety in the same amount. Justice Hanomansingh stipulated that the men are to report to the Queen Street Police Station every Friday, beginning on Friday, December 5, until their case is dealt with.

2 executions in 1 day!
A man is in police custody in connection with the murder of Kenroy Parham, 25, a former Belize City resident, which is believed to have occurred during the early hours of last Saturday, November 29, in the Mahogany Heights Community at Mile 31 on the George Price Highway. So far, the details concerning the incident have been sketchy, and police have only reported that Parham was found in the area of Mahogany Heights, a settlement of just over 1,000 residents, with multiple gunshot wounds in the back and head. Authorities also said that an individual has been detained and another is being sought for questioning as their investigations continue. Parham, who previously resided at 16 Curassow Street in Belize City before he relocated to Mahogany Heights, was remanded to prison on February 28, 2012, after he was busted with a loaded firearm during a raid by the Gang Suppression Unit (GSU).

Infighting forces Santa Familia by-election
The Ministry of Labour, Local Government, Rural Development, NEMO and Immigration and Nationality has submitted a request to the Elections and Boundaries Department for a by-election for the village of Santa Familia, Cayo District, after four of seven village council members formally tendered their resignation last month. An official source told our newspaper that two Government officers were separately dispatched to the village to attempt to help the village council reps to reconcile their differences, triggered by infighting between rival political camps, but the village council members have decided to maintain their stance. Reports to our newspaper are that there was a UDP standard-bearer convention for Cayo Northeast and the schism stemmed from the fact that the village councilors were split in their support for the contenders.

Mahogany Heights man, 19, charged for the murder of Emerson Arnold, 35
A Mahogany Heights teenager appeared in the Belize City Magistrate’s Court this morning, where Chief Magistrate Ann Marie Smith arraigned him on one count of murder for causing the unlawful death of Emerson Arnold, 35, on Friday, November 28. When Smith asked Jason Sanchez, 19, if he understood the charge that she had just read to him, Sanchez replied, “not guilty.” Smith told him that she was not asking him about his plea at that point: “Do you understand that charge that I just read,” she repeated. Finally, Sanchez replied, “Yes, I understand.” Smith remanded him into custody until his next court date on February 2, 2015.

5.1 million persons died from diabetes in 2013
Diabetes is a chronic disease which occurs when the body cannot produce enough insulin or cannot use insulin effectively. Insulin is a hormone produced in the pancreas that allows glucose from food to enter the body’s cells, where it is converted into energy needed by muscles and tissues to function. A person with diabetes does not absorb glucose properly, and glucose remains circulating in the blood (a condition known as hyperglycaemia) damaging body tissues over time. This damage can lead to disabling and life-threatening health complications. People are said to have developed diabetes if their fasting blood sugar is found to be over 126 mg/dl.

This thief “facey bad!”
Police have detained a “facey” thief who burglarized the storeroom of a businessman and stole a number of electrical conduits, then went back to the business place of the owner and tried to sell him his own goods – twice. Alvin Gillett, the owner of Supply Plus Distributor, in Belama, observed that the conduits the man was trying to sell him were similar to those that are sold by his business. He went to his storeroom in Buttonwood Bay, where he found that it had been burglarized and found that 14 rolls of his electrical conduits, valued at $50.00 per roll and totaling $700, had been stolen. The businessman immediately alerted police, who began an immediate investigation which led to the detention of four men. Police said that the 14 rolls of conduits were found with them.

Opposition PUP to nominate Richard Harrison for Cayo North by-election
After an executive meeting held in Belize City today, the Opposition People’s United Party (PUP) confirmed that Richard Harrison, a businessman of San Ignacio, Cayo, will be nominated to contest the January 5, 2015 by-election for Cayo North – triggered two years before its due date after the surprise resignation of Joseph Mahmud, the PUP’s Cayo North area representative, on Monday. The ruling United Democratic Party had picked its candidate in February 2014 and Mahmud was the man who the Opposition had thought would contest the 2017 general elections for them in Cayo North. However, Mahmud tendered his resignation in October as the PUP’s standard bearer for that division, although he assured his party that he would stay in the seat until 2017. The PUP was therefore taken by surprise when Mahmud resigned from Parliament without warning them, forcing them into crisis mode – which meant that the PUP had to abort its plans to hold a divisional convention in Cayo North.

Down the home stretch in PLB race to playoffs
We’re still waiting for the official report from the league secretariat, but we are confident of the final scores for the past weekend’s clashes in this very tight race to see which four teams will make the playoffs in the Premier League of Belize Opening Season 2014-2015. BDF 1-0 Belmopan Bandits There were two monster Saturday night encounters. Up north at the People’s Stadium, Belize Defence Force FC got a goal from sensational young striker Ambrose “Fubu” Thomas, and they made it stand up for the 1-nil win over defending champions Belmopan Bandits. Police United 6-4 Wagiya Meanwhile, out west at the Isidoro Beaton Stadium in Belmopan, it was real “football fireworks,” as home standing Police United prevailed in a high scoring 6-4 affair over visiting Wagiya from Dangriga. The damp, slippery field perhaps contributed to the many goals, but both teams also played attacking football, with nobody backing down or electing to go into “lock down” defensive mode, despite a number of lead changes.

SCA and Gwen in female finals
Central Zone high school basketball games were rained out last Thursday and Friday, so the female semifinals were concluded on Saturday, while the male semifinals began on Saturday and will be completed this evening at Bird’s Isle. In game 1 of the female semifinals last Wednesday, SCA had edged Wesley, 17-16; and Gwen Lizarraga High defeated Maude Williams High, 39-22. Game 2 of the female semifinals on Saturday, November 29, saw SCA completing the sweep of Wesley with a 14-6 victory. Brianne Jex led SCA with 8 pts. And Gwen Liz also made it two in a row against Maude Williams with a 22-14 win. Kayla Bowen led Gwen Liz with 14 pts, while Latifa Ferguson had 8 pts for Maude Williams.

Editorial: Harrison choice, Shoman installation
Sometime last Friday the Opposition People’s United Party (PUP) decided on businessman Richard Harrison as the party’s candidate for the Cayo North by-election scheduled for January 5, 2015, and introduced him to the press. The PUP, caught off guard by Joseph Mahmud’s sudden resignation from the seat last Monday, November 24, had been looking at a candidate convention to decide between Harrison and attorney Michel Chebat after Mahmud’s October decision not to run for re-election in the next general elections, scheduled for 2017. Mahmud’s unexpected resignation, followed by the Governor-General’s writ for the by-election to be held on January 5, with nominations for December 15, did not give the PUP enough time for a candidate convention. The decision between Chebat and Harrison had to be an executive one. There were two party organizations which had an early say. These were the PUP’s Western Caucus, which includes Cayo South’s Julius Espat as chairman, Orlando Habet of Cayo Northeast, Dr. Lesbia Guerra of Cayo West, Patrick Jason Andrews of Belmopan, and Dan Silva of Cayo Central. Then there was the Cayo North constituency committee. Their recommendations were to go to the national executive of the party for a final ratification. It appears that the Western Caucus leaned towards Chebat, but the constituency committee’s choice was Harrison.

From the Publisher
For the vast majority of human beings, the most scary thing about our existence is the reality of our mortality. In other words, at some point we are all going to die. And, no one has yet returned from beyond the grave to tell us what is on the other side. This is where religious belief entered the picture. Human beings overall began to believe that death was not the end, that there was some kind of life after death. The concept of heaven, which is a life of happiness after death, and the concept of hell, a life of suffering after death, became fundamental parts of the major religions. The largest religions on planet earth are Christianity and Islam, and they both feature a belief in life after death. In the societies where Christianity and Islam are powerful, children are taught in schools that if they behave righteously, they will inherit the kingdom of heaven, and if they live lives of sin, then they will be punished in the afterlife. Christianity and Islam both have holy books, the Bible and the Qu’ran, respectively, which provide guidelines with respect to what is righteous and what is sinful. In Christian and Muslim nations, then, children attend schools where they are instructed by teachers who are acceptable to their parents insofar as their beliefs, as contained in the school curriculum, are concerned.

Letters: Education Ministry treats Pat Cacho “with crass indifference”
KUDOS—Given the fragility of the country’s public health infrastructure, the refusal to allow the transfer of an ebola virus suspect from ship to aircraft for onward transport to the USA, made sense at whatever cost. KICKS—My recent offer to partner with the Ministry of Education by contributing up to Bze$400,000 to help improve/develop science laboratories in a few needy secondary schools, has been treated by the Ministry with crass indifference, to say the least. I recall the offer of partnership which eventually resulted in the establishment of the Ignacia Cacho public library in Dangriga. The offer of land and money laid on the table for some ten years, until my friend Charles “Charlie” Hyde assumed the chairmanship of the National Library Board and resolved to move the project forward… I had actually given up and demanded the return of my land and money.

Belize spared, 2014 hurricane season closes
Chief Meteorologist Dennis Gonguez reported today, following the close of the 2014 Atlantic Hurricane Season, that Belize had a rather uneventful rainy season, but an extended 6-to-7-week dry spell in the heart of the rainy season (which coincides with the Atlantic Hurricane season spanning June 1 to November 30) which he said could be attributed to changing weather patterns associated with climate change. Gonguez said that normally in August, Belize experiences a dry period for about 9 to 10 days, but this year’s dry spell started earlier and lasted longer than usual. The rainy season started off on cue, with rains descending on June 1, but June and July were mostly dry. It was not until August that the rains stated to normalize, Gonguez recounted. The rainy season ended this weekend with persistent frontal rains, resulting from a moist northeasterly air flow. Gonguez said that the rains are expected to persist for a few days, clearing up on Wednesday and Thursday of this week.

18 months in jail for aggravated assault with a firearm upon his wife
Chief Magistrate Ann Marie Smith found a businessman guilty of aggravated assault with a firearm and sentenced him to 18 months in prison. In April 2013, Enfield Reyes, 34, was charged with the aggravated assault after his wife reported to police that he pulled his licensed firearm at her during a domestic dispute at their King Street home. Bernadette Reyes, 30, in her testimony at the trial, told the court that on the day of the incident, she had made several attempts to leave the house, but her husband prevented her from doing so by blocking the doorway.

Sugar industry deadlock inching towards resolution
As we have extensively reported for some time now, the future of the sugar industry has been threatened by an ongoing stalemate between the local cane farmers’ association and the owners of the sugar mill, but today, Friday, after a meeting between representatives of the Belize Sugar Cane Farmers Association (BSCFA), the Sugar Industry Control Board (SICB), the Ministry of Agriculture, and Prime Minister Dean Barrow, the volatile situation has seemingly inched one step closer to being a thing of the past. The meeting took place at 10:00 this morning at the Belize Biltmore Plaza Hotel in Belize City, and at the end of that session, an hour and a half later, the lingering press was invited into the room to hear optimistic news for the critical national industry. Prime Minister Dean Barrow, who had taken on a temporary role as mediator in the deadlock prior to the last sugar crop season, informed us that the BSCFA has a new modified position which, he feels, presents the best chance for both parties to reach middle ground, although neither Barrow nor the principals of the BSCFA would divulge any of the details of the new proposal.

Patrick JonesPJ

Accused shoplifter in court
Fifty-seven year old Tony Rowland, who allegedly shop-lifted 4 injector cleaners from the convenience store at Uno Gas Station on Youth For The Future Drive, pleaded not guilty to a charge of theft. Roland appeared today before the Chief Magistrate, Anne Marie Smith. Rowland was offered a bail […]

More illegal entrants to be deported
A pair of Guatemalan waitresses were caught in the country after illegally entering through the Mopan River en route to the suburban neighborhood of Bella Vista in Belize City. Thirty-three year old Sylvia Arias and 25 year old Rosa Velasquez, both from Puerto Barrios, were each fined $1,000 […]

Armed robbers target delivery truck in Cotton Tree
Belmopan police are investigating a terrifying armed robbery which happened in broad daylight on Monday in Cotton Tree village. According to police, two men described as being of dark complexion, held up a Bowen and Bowen delivery truck around 2:35 pm on Monday at a Chinese store […]

Law enforcement torch run underway
The annual torch run undertaken by law enforcement officers started this morning in Corozal. Since 2012 the men and women of law enforcement organize and participate in the torch run as a part of their support for the Special Olympics Belize’s National games. This year, officers partnered […]

Prime Minister Barrow to attend CARICOM-Cuba Summit
Caribbean Community leaders, including Prime Minister Dean Barrow will gather in Havana, Cuba on Monday of next week for the fifth Cuba-CARICOM summit. During the summit, regional leaders will look to deepen Cuba’s economic and trade relations with the countries of CARIFORUM and furthering cooperation several areas […]

Marine biologist joins Oceana-Belize staff
Oceana-Belize today announced that a highly qualified Marine Scientist has joined its staff. Dr. Isani Chan, originally from Punta Gorda town, returns to Belize for the job after spending eight years overseas during which he was engaged in extensive work in the field of marine conservation and […]

Edmond Castro defamation suit goes to trial in May
Late on Monday evening Justice Courtney Abel set a date for the trial of the case brought against Alvarene Burgess by Minister of State and Belize Rural North area representative Edmond Castro. Burgess accused Castro of involvement in facilitating visa applications for a fee. Castro denies the charges, which were made by Burgess in a series of television interviews aired on Great Belize Television (Channel 5) which is also a party to the case. After the in-chambers session, the attorney representing Burgess, Anthony Sylvestre, Jr., told reporters that the late trial date of May 13 and 14 is due to a packed court calendar.

Jason Sanchez charged with Emerson Arnold murder
Belize City resident Jason Sanchez was arraigned on Monday for the crime of murder. Sanchez is accused of Friday’s killing of 35 year old Emmerson Arnold also known as Emmo. Arnold, a father of four and worker at Belize Water Services Limited, was on his way to work when his assailant accosted him on Gibnut Street and shot him as many as seven times in the back. Sanchez was remanded by Chief Magistrate Ann-Marie Smith until February 27, 2015.

City man pulls gun on wife
A domestic dispute nearly turned deadly for Bernadette Reyes of Belize City, who accuses her own husband, businessman Enfield Reyes of King Street, of pointing a gun at and then firing at her when she tried to leave him in April of this year. Reyes was given 18 months in prison on Monday after Chief Magistrate Ann-Marie Smith convicted him of aggravated assault with a firearm, dismissing his defense as “a fairy tale.” According to Mrs. Reyes, she had already gone through their front gate on April 13 when the accused pulled out his licensed 9mm pistol on her and fired a shot into the drain.

Early Christmas Party for some Belize City children
This morning more than 100 Belize City children were treated to an early taste of Christmas courtesy of the Florida Caribbean Cruise Association. The FCCA hosted its annual party at the House of Culture. The youngsters were entertained by song, dance and games from a visiting clown and face painting, with a visit from Santa Claus thrown in the mix. The Belize Tourism Board’s assistant director of destination planning Arlo Cansino says it is one of the ways the organization gives back to its partners in the industry.

Blogs

The Rainy Season is Upon Us and HOPEFULLY Wrapping up Soon
After an almost unreally beautifully start to November, it closed with…a bit of a squish. Wet, rainy, grey with a chilly northern breeze. The temperature almost dipped into the high 60s one night! Saturday was a beautiful break in the rain… but Sunday and Monday? Pretty much rain outs. A few pictures that I took around town over the past week. Rainy days aren’t THAT bad. Black cloud looming over the Sandy Point Resorts dock in the middle of town.

International Sourcesizz

OPEC’s Venezuela Rejection Seen Spurring Devaluation
OPEC’s refusal to cut oil production is increasing the chances Venezuela will have to devalue its currency and sell its U.S.-based oil unit to avoid a default, according to EMSO Partners Ltd. and EM Quest Capital. The country’s benchmark notes due 2027 sank to a five-year low of 51.6 cents on the dollar yesterday as the decision of the Organization of Petroleum Exporting Countries on Nov. 27 to maintain output deepened a collapse in the price of oil, which accounts for 95 percent Venezuela’s export revenue. Yesterday’s decline in Venezuelan bonds was the steepest since October 2008, according to JPMorgan Chase & Co. President Nicolas Maduro will have little choice but to adopt measures, including devaluing the bolivar and selling Citgo Petroleum Corp., to shore up finances after the country’s foreign-currency reserves reached an 11-year low last month, said Patrick Esteruelas, who helps manage $2 billion of emerging-market debt at EMSO Partners. Venezuela, which pushed for an output cut, needs oil at about $85 a barrel, even after trimming payments to allies, to cover its dollar liabilities, according to Jefferies Group LLC.

Man 'Eaten Alive' by anaconda explains why he did it — and how it felt
Being consumed alive by a giant snake sounds like the stuff of nightmares, but for conservationist, filmmaker and "Eaten Alive" star Paul Rosolie, it was a personal goal — one that he's now fulfilled. The question is: Why? Viewers will get a chance to see how Rosolie and the snake fared for themselves soon enough, but the naturalist offered up a taste of the action Tuesday. "The last thing I remember is seeing the snake's mouth open straight at my face," he said. "Everything went black. It was like being caught it a wave. It was just wrapped up; you feel that crush. … For over an hour I was being constricted."

Videos


Video: Dive Medicine Belize 2014, 4min. This video is about the Expedition and Wilderness Medicine course to Belize covering Marine and Diving Expedition Medicine run in 2014. There were a few mishaps en route, everyone got wet, but a great experience and wonderful week. Heres to a great team.
Video: Belize Solid Waste Management Authority II, 2min.
Video: Belize Adventures at Hopkins Bay, 4min. Nik & Dusty take their niece on a family adventure in Belize! Laid back living, beautiful beaches, and friendly faces greet them in the town of Hopkins. Join them as they kayak, snorkel, fish, dine on local cuisine, & fly on zip lines through Belize.
Video: Ka'ana Resort Gives a Warm Welcome, 5min. Ka'ana gives Nik, Dusty, and Monica a taste of LUXURY in the middle of the Belizean jungle. Visit the Mayan ruins of Xunantunich, go cave tubing, try local cuisine, and overcome fears of the infamous Black Hole Drop along with these fun adventurers! At the end of each day, return to comforts and pampering at Ka'ana Resort.
Video: The Ballam Escape- Belize, 2.5min.
Video: Belize Vacations November 2014, 5min. My diving vacations.
Video: Flies for Ascension Bay and Belize, 3.5min. Here is a great fly assortment that we sell that will get you prepared to fish for Bonefish, Permit, Tarpon, Snook, and Barracuda in Ascension Bay Mexico or Belize.
Video: Belize Trip Explanation Day 01, 14min.
Video: Belize Trip Explanation Day 02, 10min.
Video: Belize Trip Explanation Day 03, 8min.
Video: Belize Trip Explanation Day 04, 7min.
Video: Belize Trip Explanation Day 05, 15min.
Video: Belize Trip Explanation Day 06, 11min.
Video: San Pedro Belize trip 2014, 5min.

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