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#504745 - 05/31/15 12:02 PM Today's Belize News: May 31, 2015
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Specials and Events

Last night's TV news on Channel 7, Channel 5, LOVETV, PGTV, West Vision (Cayo) and CTV 3
Also with the most recent Open Your Eyes, Rise and Shine Morning Show, and the Dickie Bradley Specials


The San Pedro Sun

Congratulations to our new Miss Chiquitita 2015 - 2016, Killianie Sosa
Killianie was sponsored by Gaby's Construction and won over the judges in the pageant held May 30th.

The Coconut Telegraph in San Pedro doesn’t hold water
As the for sale sign was posted at Saga Humane Society on Sea Star Street early Saturday morning, the rumor mill in San Pedro dubbed the “coconut telegraph” was so hot it nearly caught flames. Speculation that Saga Humane Society was for sale circulated, as did its’ potential closing for most of the day until Saga issued a Facebook post and a release to the media that all is well for Saga Humane Society and that expansion is on the horizon, not closure. Saga Humane Society Board Member Kevin Smith commented, “No Saga is not for sale, and No Saga is not closing its doors. We were notified by the landlord that she and her partner have made the decision to sell the property for personal reasons. We have good open communication with the landlord and the real estate company and will have plenty of time to make arrangements for all of the animals that we will continue to care for”. The sale of the property on Sea Star Street may be just what the doctor ordered for Saga Humane Society who has been working on a strategic plan which includes a new building to house the clinic operations and the shelter animals all under one roof with advanced equipment and diagnostics.

2015 Atlantic Hurricane Season forecast: “Below Average”
With the 2015 Atlantic Basin Hurricane Season starting on Monday, June 1st, meteorologists are predicting a historical below average activity. A total of nine named storms, five hurricanes and one major hurricane are expected this season, with the first storm name already used. Tropical Storm Anna developed Friday, May 8th and was the first pre-season development of the 2015 Hurricane Season. The forecasts were prepared by the Weather Channel Professional Division, National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) and the Colorado State University (CSU), and all stated below average hurricane activity for 2015. Out of the predicted storms, only one is expected to attain ‘major’ status. According to the forecast, the moderate strength of the El Niño phenomenon and a relatively cool tropical Atlantic condition is attributing to the expected low activity. “Both the dynamical models and our proprietary statistical models suggest a relatively quiet tropical season this year,” stated Meteorologist Doctor Todd Crawford of The Weather Channel Professional Division.

Minister Manuel Heredia clarifies questions surrounding Hol Chan Marine Reserve Expansion
Following years of lobbying by marine environmentalists on Ambergris Caye, the expansion of Hol Chan Marine Reserve was approved by Cabinet and inaugurated in a grand celebration on February 25, 2015. But shortly after the celebrations, news broke out that the Statutory Instrument (SI) was still being reviewed by the Attorney General. Thirty days later, the SI remained unsigned, leading to the belief that the expansion was not yet official. Since that controversy, Minister of Tourism, Culture and Civil Aviation and Area Representative Honorable Manuel Heredia Jr. went on the record to clarify the allegation and confirm that the expansion is official. “When we inaugurated the expansion of the Hol Chan Marine Reserve it was already official. Yes the document was still being reviewed by the Attorney General but only to ensure that it does not contravene any other law. Honorable Lisel Alamilla (Minister of Forestry, Fisheries and Sustainable Development) signed the SI shortly after the ceremony with my support,” said Heredia. According to Heredia the confusion was blown out of proportion without reason. “Once the relevant Minister placed their signature on the SI and it was gazetted, then it became official. The Attorney General advises on the legalities and wording of the SI to ensure that everything is in proper order. It doesn’t need his signature to make it a done deal. This is what caused the confusion,” said Heredia.

SPTD initiates tint removal from vehicle windows
The San Pedro Town Council (SPTC) and the San Pedro Traffic Department (SPTD) conducted the removal of tints from taxi vehicle windows on Tuesday, May 26th at the Honorable Louis Sylvester Sports Arena. The activity started at 8AM and ended around 5PM. The measure came into effect after recent incidents in which taxi drivers’ safety has been jeopardized. According to Freddy Gonzalez, foreman at SPTC, this initiative is also aimed at getting anyone on the island that has a vehicle with tinted windows to remove it. “We are doing this for the safety of not only the taxi drivers, but everyone on the island. We encouraged everyone who has their vehicle windows tinted to cooperate and have the tints removed,” said Gonzalez.

Placencia hosts 3rd Annual Sailing Regatta
On Saturday, May 23rd and Sunday, May 24th, young sailors from across the country converged at Placencia Village for the Third Annual Placencia Sailing Regatta. The regatta saw the participation of 15 sailors from five of the country’s top sailing clubs. Despite inclement weather conditions, this was the Belize Sailing Associations (BzSA) second National ranking sailing regatta that determines the sailors who will participate in the National Champions Regatta (BIZ15) at the end of the sailing season. The participating clubs included the Belize Sea Scouts (BSS), Belize City Sailing Club (BCSC), Corozal Bay Sailing Club (CBSC), Placencia Sailing Club (PSC) and the San Pedro Racers (SPR).

San Pedro supports World No Tobacco Day 2015
May 31st is observed as World No Tobacco Day (WNTD) to highlight the health risks associated with the use of tobacco based products. This year, events are being held under the theme “Stop illicit trade of tobacco products”. The theme calls for countries to work together in implementing regulations and advocate for effective policies to reduce tobacco consumption. While there are no scheduled activities for San Pedro Town, National Drug Abuse Control Council (NDACC) representative Kristina Romero is encouraging everyone to observe the day by not smoking. The Ministry of Health (MOH) is also inviting the public to join in commemorating WNTD 2015. This year, all district offices of the NDACC will convene at the Belize City office on Amara Avenue to celebrate the day with a community information fair focusing on the negative effects of tobacco consumption and the health of our communities. NDACC encourages the public to visit the information fair and participate in the activities. Information will be available on the harmful effects of Tobacco, second-hand Smoking and the work that the MOH is doing in the area of policy development and creation of smoke free areas. The fair is aimed at raising awareness on the health, economic and social impact of the illicit trade of tobacco products due to increased accessibility and affordability.21 World No Tobacco Day-1

Misc Belizean Sourcesmzz

LICA Teacher Orientation Session
Today, we held a meeting with all the LICA teachers in Belmopan to share the idea and philosophy of LICA. The session is one of many training sessions. By September 2015, the teachers will be ready to deliver to the children of La Isla Cariñosa Caye Caulker. I don't believe in getting teachers and simply throw them into a classroom in September, absolutely not; they need a full orientation and need to be fully prepared to work with our Caye Caulker children, administration, parents, and community. September 2015, you will see new faces of educators on Caye Caulker. It was an interesting session. At the introduction, I sensed their nervousness. They mentioned that they have heard a lot about me from their professors and that I had high expectations in the education field, that I am "tough" and demand high quality. My response was, with our Belizean children, they deserve nothing less than high quality. During the presentation, they were inspired by the idea of LICA. One teacher, during the presentation asked, "Is it really possible to have that kind of school in Belize." My response was, "Certainly." The idea of this school exist in developed countries and I have personally visited in the USA and in Europe. The idea is not one created in my mind. The idea exists in countries genuinely concerned about the delivery of quality education to their children. These country hold strong policies in the interest of children align with the Convention of the Rights of a Child policy. Although Belize may not enforce these policies, LICA will ensure we deliver quality and meet the standards compared to international educational institutions.

Freak accident takes the life of Xaibe resident
A man from Xaibe village succumbed to injuries sustained in a freak traffic incident. Information to our newsroom is that the man was sleeping under the truck, when his partner drove off, dragging the man in his trail.. More in our monday newscast..

Channel 7

Just To Get By
For the past month, Belize City resident Caroline Hamilton and her family have been having a very bad go of it after their house burnt down on Aloe Vera Street Extension. She's been going around trying to seek assistance to build a new home, and since she's not having much luck, she and her common-law husband have been forced to live in the remains of what used to be her home. That's below any standard of living, and today, our news team visited them to see firsthand what they've had to endure just to avoid sleeping on the street. Daniel Ortiz has that report: Caroline Hamilton - Fire Victim "I don't have anywhere to live with my kids. The situation is, I live in a frame that used to be my home." Daniel Ortiz reporting That's this bit of charred remains. It once was the home of Caroline Hamilton, her 3 kids, and her common-law husband. Now, it's just a frame made of burnt wood, structurally unstable and ready to collapse at any moment.

PUP Rep Breaks Party Line, Says Yes To Petro-C
The PUP's Ivan Ramos is in trouble with his party tonight - that's because the Dangriga Representative broke the party line and accepted Petrocaribe monies. 7News has obtained a signed letter from Ramos to the Prime Minister dated Wednesday May 27th in which he expresses his support for, quote, "the Petrocaribe arrangements and the benefits the nation is deriving therefrom" end quote. Ramos then goes unto ask for the $25,000 dollars that the Prime Minister offered to opposition representatives in April. Here's what the PM said at the conference on the 29th:.. Hon. Dean Barrow - Prime Minister of Belize "May I tell you that I've been approached by a PUP representative asking for a share of the Mother's Day Christmas Cheer?" Crowd "Which one?" Hon. Dean Barrow "I'm not calling any names. I'm not calling the man's name. I told him, I can give you, but I have to make it public. Let me offer to all of them $25,000 each, as part of - Man, even though they are quarrelling with us, everybody must enjoy Petrocaribe, and their constituents, they have mothers too. They can get $25,000 for each representative, but they need to work that out with Francis and Julius."

Flare Up At Southern Border Between Bze Coast Guard & Guat Navy
< Relations between Belize and Guatemala are uneasy tonight - and that's because there were a pair of tense confrontations between the Guatemalan Navy and the Belize National Coast Guard in the Sarstoon yesterday. Once again, the Guatemalan Navy accused Belizeans on Sarstoon island of being within Guatemalan Territory. Except, in this case, it wasn't the Belize Territorial Volunteers, but a coast Guard Patrol which was on the island, which is squarely within Belizean territory. Here's what happened: the Coast Guard personnel were on Sarstoon Island doing reconnaissance on Thursday morning when a Guatemalan Naval patrol pulled up to inquire what they were doing in the area. Prior to this, the Guatemalan naval vessel was making some aggressive maneuvers in the river. So, it made things even more testy. Now, the Belize Guatemala southern border is defined as the deepest channel in the Sarstoon river south of the island, meaning that anyone on the island is squarely in Belize. Armed with that knowledge the Coast Guard Commander told them that they - the Guatemalans - were the ones making an incursion into Belize and they should go back. The Guatemalans retreated, but returned in the afternoon with two vessels and the confrontation played out again.

The Body 2000 Takedown By City Hall
Body 2000 - it's the largest and most popular gym in Belize City - and sports all the posh clientele, from the Prime Minister and his wife, to the northside nouveau riche. But this afternoon, those getting in their Friday workout were told by police that they had to pack up and go home - because the gym was bring closed by order of the city council. The receptionist was handed a letter and stiff instruction to close down the gym or she could be arrested. Why? Well, IT seems that the owner didn't pay his 2015 trade license - and so City Hall moved in with police enforcement. One of the gym regulars who was caught mid-rep is activist Geovanni Bracket. He told us why he was upset:.. "I was shocked today when I came here. When I got off work a bit early and when I came here to find out to see a bunch of police officers I'm not sure if they had guns or anything but they came really like they just frightened the young

Caught With Weed Four Years Ago, Get 3 Years in Jail
30 year-old Kent Nunez, 29 year-old Jason Phillips, and 35 year-old Richard Smith are spending their first night of a 3 year sentence after they were convicted of drug trafficking before Chief Magistrate Ann Marie Smith. These men were busted 4 years ago with 17 kilos - or 38 pounds - of marijuana at the Western Border which they were trying to smuggle into Belize. A police officer testified for the prosecution that on March 16, he was at the border in Benque Viejo Town when he saw 2 men walk across from Puga's Farm to a maroon car which was parked on the highway. They had a bulky plastic bag with them, and when they arrived at the vehicle, they put it in the trunk. The police thought this behavior was suspicious and so, the vehicle was intercepted. All 3 men were in the vehicle at the time, and the bag was searched. The officers found 17.233 Kilograms - or 37.9 pounds - of marijuana in the bag, and so they were jointly charged with drug trafficking.

Tobacco Takes A Toll
Today was celebrated as world no tobacco day – where health authorities all over the world focused on the illicit trade in cigarettes – and the long list of health issues and costs brought on by tobacco use. In Belize, the National Drug Abuse Control Council took the lead with an and said that tobacco is a serious health factor in Belize:..

Blatter Reign Continues, Belize Supports
Earlier this week it seemed that the heavens would fall in the football universe after 10 senior FIFA officials were bought under indictment for corruption, money laundering and wire fraud. But tonight the FIFA firmament is intact after present Sepp Blatter was re-elected as president for a fifth term. So, where did Belize stand in all of it? Well, all the projections said that CONCACAF - which covers North, Central America and the Caribbean would fall in behind Blatter along with Africa and Asia - giving him enough to comfortably hold unto the top spot. Our information says that President of the FFB Ruperto Vicente did vote for Blatter and not for his challenger Prince Ali Bin Hussein. And while Vicente held the line - even after CONCACAF President Jeffrey Webb, and his predecessor Jack Warner were indicted for corruption - he'll have his own troubles when he returns home.

18 Wheeler Takes a Plunge
There was a major accident on the rolling hills of the Hummingbird Highway this evening. It happened at about 2:30 when an 18-wheeler plunged over a cliff at around mile 26. Incredibly, no one was seriously hurt - but the trailer truck was destroyed. That particular hill is one of the steepest on the highway.

What's In a Flag
Earlier this week the amendment to the compromis was signed in Guatemala City - much to the dismay of various political parties and social commentators. But what was even more troubling to many was the distorted Belize flag they signed in front of. The coat of arms was completely out of whack and some have said Foreign Minister Elringotn should not have signed in front of it. And while that is a fair comment, we can't really criticize others for getting our flag wrong when we ourselves can't get it right even here in Belize. I'm talking about the weird skin tones of the male figure sin the coat of arms. Over the years, the light skinned figure has gone from brown to yellow. In September I examined this phenomenon:.

Capital Cop For Possession
Belmopan Police have not made any arrest for the multiple murders that occurred this week, but they have arrested one police officer for drug possession. He is Brighton Fuentes and he was found with six grams of cannabis. He has now been placed on interdiction.

Jamaican Reggae For Free
Reggae Headliners Tarrus Riley Tanya Stevens are in Belize preparing for their big show tomorrow night, but they aren't the only Jamaican musicians in Belize who want to perform for you. Up-and-coming artist Moeish is also here, she intends to work with the Blue Hole All Star Band featuring Jamaican and Belizean Musicians. She told us that she's putting on a free concert in Belize City for her first visit which coincides with her birthday:... The concert takes place on Monday at BTL Park at 7 p.m. Admission, as we said, is free.

Preparing For Prom
Winter's Night: That is the theme for Maud Williams's Prom Night 2015. The group of 4th formers has been preparing, selecting dresses, shoes and accessories for about 3 weeks - all to ensure that they have the perfect prom outfit. But, truth is, The prom almost didn't happen, and only with the help of sponsors and fund raising events - it's on right now at the Chateau Caribbean. But how did they get to this point? Based on what I found out - it was no easy task.

Major Gun Bust In Corozal
Corozal police have made a weapons bust in Carolina Village this morning, an AMC 9mm pistol containing (5) Live rounds of 9mm ammunition. And later, at about 1130 the same team visited a lot containing an abandoned house and while conducting search in a hole in the eastern side in the building they found a brown.45 pistol. And at about 4:30 Police visited an open lot in the Halls Layout area where a black in color plastic bag was found in the outskirts of Chan Chen Village was searched where a black in bag was found where upon inspection was found to contain (1) MAK 90 AK-47 Rifle

Caye Caulker Chronicles

Guatemalans In Mass Protest Over Corruption; President Molina Called On To Step Down
Mass protests against the government of President Otto Perez Molina have rocked that country for weeks, with more protests set to take place on Saturday, May 30, 2015. Many Guatemalans refer to his presidency as the most corrupt they have ever seen. The wake of corruption scandals have seen the central bank chief indicted for fraud, Vice President Roxana Baldetti resign, and key cabinet members quite or get fired. “Democracy is collapsing and therefore Otto Perez Molina must resign,” Marco Sagastume, the head of the country’s attorneys association, told reporters this week.

The Belize Times

SEDITIOUS
Despite tremendous public disapproval and protests by the Opposition People’s United Party, Foreign Minister Sedi Elrington travelled to Guatemala over the long “Sovereign’s Day” holiday weekend to sign another secret document in direct relation to the unfounded Guatemalan claim. Two weeks ago, Elrington mistakenly revealed in a television news interview that he planned to travel to Guatemala, at the request of the Guatemalan Government, to approve amendments to the 2008 Compromis document, also at the request of the Guatemalan Government. This, he said, he would do without consulting the people of Belize, and without first showing the public or even the Opposition PUP, exactly what it was that he was going to sign. This incensed Belizeans and drew the Opposition’s condemnation, so much that the People’s United Party announced that it would boycott such move by the Government, ending the bi-partisan approach they had been supporting.

Armed Duo Robs M&M Engineering Office in Belize City
Police have detained one man but are looking for several others for the brazen armed robbery of M&M Engineering Consultant Limited, a construction company located at mile 2 ½ on the Phillip Goldson Highway, on Friday May 22, 2015. Video footage of the robbery shows two men entering the waiting lounge on the second floor around 3:30 in the afternoon. The men, both of creole descent, wore t-shirts and short pants. One of the men is seen pulling out a gun upon entering but concealed the weapon right after. The men mulled around the lounge before pressing the office’s buzzer and when a staff member opened it, they rushed in at gun point. Once inside the main office, the armed men held up the staff, taking their money, cell phones and other possessions.

92 illegal fields near Western Border
Agricultural Expansion in the Chiquibul Forest Satellite imagery and aerial reconnaissance shows that forest cover in adjacent Guatemala is severely fragmented. Across the border in Belize, the Chiquibul remained largely contiguous until around 1985 when agricultural encroachments were first observed in the area. Within the Chiquibul Forest (CF) there are no recognized human settlements, but an estimated 65 Guatemalan communities are found in a 45 km stretch along the adjacent Belize-Guatemala border; of which 11 immediately buffer the Chiquibul Forest. These communities are highly dependent on the natural resources found in the CF. Due to the high level of forest fragmentation in neighbouring Guatemala, local Guatemalans have been illegally harvesting the resources of the Chiquibul Forest for decades. Illegal activities include poaching, looting of Mayan ruins, illegal logging, xaté extraction, gold panning and agricultural encroachments.

Roaring Creek Men Mutilated!
The gruesome murders of two men, 28 year old Edilberto Madrid and 51 year old Steve Hyde, have shocked the residents of Roaring Creek Village and nearby communities. The men went missing on separate days. Their bodies were found on different locations, but the horrid manner in which they were killed was similar. Madrid was reported missing by his common-law wife, Julie Fernandez, on Sunday May 24th morning. His body was discovered on Tuesday morning floating in the Belize Old River, about 200 yard from the Agripino Cawich bridge in the Young Bank Area of Camalote Village. His head, two hands and feet had been severed. He also had a large cut on his body, extending from his neck to his torso, and his inner body parts had been taken out. His sister, Lioni Bejerano, was the only family member strong enough to identify the body. She said that while the family is devastated, they are thankful that they have closure.

Think About It
Sharon Fraser is the most important person in the whole nation regarding the salaries negotiation between the government and the public services unions. The massive entity called the public services is made up of two groups: the public service which consists of thousands of employees in the departments and ministries and the senior managers who are more of the management/employer category. The Police have an Association but the BDF are even less involved than the Police. They both have no say and have to take what they get. The bulk of the public officers are represented by the Public Service Union. This Union has seen its glory days. The current leadership is weak and is surrounded by quislings and persons who are compromised. There are a few leaders who are known UDP supporters and as such are not able to conscientiously serve the best interest of the many employers in the public service.

The People Must Demand Better
As we await the date for the next general elections, which by all reasonable speculations should come sooner than later, Belizean voters have serious realities to confront. Do we proceed with politics as usual; this “tyranny of structurelessness” or do we demand a better way going forward? The United Democratic Party is in their second consecutive term of office and this second term in particular, has been a politician’s dream; unlimited money to spend, no structured system of accountability and a very tame media. Given the hesitance of Belizean businesses to advertise, media houses in Belize are mostly reliant upon government advertising to meet operating costs. As a result, the media in Belize tends to tiptoe around those issues considered too controversial or which they know might raise the ire of government and result in the loss of advertisement revenues. If in doubt, check with Plus TV. In February of 2012, almost immediately after being re-elected by the narrowest of margin, Prime Minister Dean Barrow signed into effect, the restart of the Petro-Caribe program. It is a program that was originally negotiated for by the PUP government but because of resistance from Esso Standard Oil the program never really got traction. Esso at the time enjoyed a monopoly on fuel distribution in Belize and had declined to work with Venezuela, preferring instead its U.S. base of supplies. It is still a mystery how this government was able to convince super multinational Esso to close shop and hand over operations PUMA who sells strictly Venezuelan fuel. Oil companies are notorious for their insatiable greed and it is not likely that they would have simply surrendered their monopoly without some quid pro quo. The things that make you go hmmmmm…

Editorial: UNFIT TO LEAD
The road to the International Court of Justice (I.C.J) has become a risky journey for Belize, littered with I.E.D-improvised explosive devices. The doings of the current Prime Minister, his foreign minister and the government. The Prime Minister was told over one year and a half ago by Guatemala that she would no longer hold simultaneous referenda with Belize and would instead hold their bilateral referenda during their elections in September and October 2015. The Prime Minister was wrong to hold this information to himself. He had a duty to inform Belizeans and to raise it in the National Assembly for the views of the nation’s elected officials. The Guatemala Claim/I.C.J. issue is a matter of national importance. It is more important than the Prime Minister and his government. It is not their place to decide what information to withhold from the people. Ever since his slim majority in the 2012 general elections, the Prime Minister has been behaving increasingly autocratic. The list of such behavior is long and troubling. The most recent and most troubling is the revelation that for two years and six months (since 12 September 2012) the Prime Minister has been committing gross violations of the Finance and Audit (Reform) Act. He has removed almost three hundred millions dollars from the Petro Caribe funds without once adhering to the requirements of the law.

Team Digicell 4G dominates Outback Ranch circuit race
Team Digicell 4G dominated the Outback Ranch Circuit Race of 4 laps over a 20 mile circuit from the Outback Ranch at mile 30.6 to mile 33 and back to the Outback, organized by the Cycling Federation of Belize on the George Price Highway on Monday. Top 10 finishers 1st Giovanni Lovell – Team Digicell 4G 2nd Joel Borland – Team Digicell 4G 3rd Brandon Cattouse – Team C-Ray Road Addikz 4th Gregory Lovell – Team Digicell 4G 5th overall/1st Masters – Liam Stewart – Western Spirits team 6th Joslyn Chavarria – Team Digicell 4G 7th Byron Pope – Team Benny’s Megabytes 8th Philip Leslie – Team Benny’s Megabytes

St. Joseph’s RC defeats Wesley Upper 3-0 in football
The St. Joseph’s RC boys ran over the Wesley Upper school boys 3-0 in the Belize City primary schools football competition on Tuesday, with goals by Eldon “Quincy” Byrd, Bjarne “BJ” Gabourel and Sergio Andrade. The St. John Vianney RC boys got the easy bye to their 2nd win: 3-0 against the Queen Square Anglican School boys were a no show for Tuesday’s game. The Vianney boys had posted their 1st win, 3-2, against the Ebenezer Methodist School boys last Monday with 2 goals from Mikey Palacio and 1 goal by Daniel Hemmans. Ebenezer’s Marco Rojas and Trevis Flowers scored a goal apiece. In game 3, the Queen St. Baptist School boys drew 1-1 with the Salvation Army school when Eshaq King scored for Queen St., and Jaron Carcamo scored for Salvation Army.

Unitedville Rebels are Softball Champs
The Unitedville Rebels won the VIII Charles Solis Memorial softball tournament, their first ever championship in this event organized by the Belize Softball Federation and the Solis family at the “home of softball” at the Rogers’ Stadium on Sunday. The Rebels toughed it out, against the Belize Bank Bulldogs, to win the championship 7-6 as Francine Salazar struck out 2 batters, walked one, and gave up 8 hits. The Rebels got 10 hits off Bulldogs’ pitcher Hortencia Richards to score 7 runs. The Rebels won the Charles Solis Memorial cup, presented by his son, they get to hold the Cup for a year until the next tournament. Rebels’ pitcher Francine Salazar won the MVP award, and the 2nd and 3rd place winners received individual medals.

Water crisis in Gardenia and Biscayne Villages
The residents of Gardenia and Biscayne Villages deserve potable running water in their homes. The BWS water line stops in Sandhill just 1.5 miles outside of Gardenia Village and 4 miles from Biscayne Village. It will take a pittance from the Petro Caribe Fund together with villagers’ labor to extend the water line to these two villages so that they can have safe drinking water. In Biscayne Village, a villager shared that there is a water crisis. He said the wells are dried up and a water truck arrives with water, only UDP supporters get water. Just how unfair can the UDP be to the people of Gardenia and Biscayne Villages? “It is our TAX DOLLARS that pays for the water and the truck. Every single villager deserves to fill their buckets. How can you say this UDP Government is a Government for all?” questioned the resident.

Saldivar fired from CEO post??
Everyone who is anyone in the Barrow Administration has kept their mouths shut and/or has shut out the media about the sudden fallout with Candelaria Saldivar from her post as Chief Executive Officer in the Ministry of Immigration, Local Government and NEMO. Saldivar, we understand, has been placed on Administrative Leave, pending her re-assignment to a new post in the Barrow Government’s politically-stuffed public service. Meanwhile Edmund Zuniga has been asked to act as CEO until The abrupt re-designation came as a surprise to everyone, because Candelaria Saldivar, who is the sister of the Minister of National Security John Saldivar, carried tremendous political clout in the Government and in particular, the Ministry of Immigration. She even survived the boat rocking caused by the Penner-Wong Hong Kim scandal and the visa hustling scandal which followed.

Scotiabank Welcomes New Country Head, Michael Shaw
Scotiabank (Belize) Ltd. is pleased to advise that Mr. Michael Shaw has been appointed as the new Vice President & Managing Director of the bank. Mr. Shaw has been with Scotiabank since 1980 and brings with him extensive experience in Retail Banking and Leadership. As the former District Vice President of Scotiabank Metro North in Jamaica, Mr. Shaw successfully led the Sales and Service management team for the district comprising of 10 bank branches. In his new role at Scotiabank (Belize) Ltd., Mr. Shaw will be responsible for the development, communication and implementation of the bank’s local business strategy, business goals and core values for Belize’s operations in alignment with International Banking and Corporate strategies. This appointment marks the first international assignment of the new country head and highly successful business banking leader. When asked about his vision for the bank in his new role, Mr. Shaw said, “First, I am delighted to be in Belize and to work with this amazing team of people. Moving forward, our strategy will continue to focus on serving our customers and delivering on our Service Promise, keeping our operations safe and effectively managing operational and credit risk. We are guided by our core values and risk management culture and focus on maintaining the trust and confidence of our customers, while helping them become financially better off”.

The Case for Public Meetings
A number of “intellectuals” dismiss the need for political parties to hold regular public meetings in each district of this country. They believe that one public meeting, if any at all, a day or two days before an election is enough to help secure a victory for any party. Like many other concerned Belizeans I totally reject that view. A public meeting is one of the most important tools for any party that is serious about victory at the polls. It gives a party the platform to layout detailed plans for job creation, housing, land reform, and crime control among others topics to make Belize a better country for all its people. Public meetings also give a party the opportunity to explain to the public in layman’s language the many faults of its opponent, which makes it unworthy of a victory in an election. Furthermore a public meeting offers one of the greatest opportunities for a party to show the voters that it has candidates who can deliver themselves well and represent a constituency at any level. Additionally public meetings give a party the opportunity to energize its base and persuade a number of independent voters to support it at the polls. Those are some of the main reasons why political parties throughout the world even in the great United States continue to hold public meetings or rallies.

The tale of two NEMO houses
The residents of Maskall are becoming more and more distraught with their area representative after finding out that the houses donated by NEMO after a wind storm a few weeks ago were not fairly distributed. Villagers have shared the “TALE OF TWO NEMO HOUSES”. After the wind storm passed through the village, NEMO conducted an assessment of the villagers affected and decided to assist five residents with Mennonite houses, but apparently two very close family members of the UDP Minister benefitted from the generous assistance. According to the villagers, one of the houses went to the UDP Minister’s sister who, in the villagers’ view, didn’t need it because she owns two two-story concrete houses. The house that NEMO appraised to be damaged was only a frame under construction and was not owned by the sister. The next NEMO house found a resting place on the football field without an owner. According to some villagers the house was placed on the football field because it was to have been given to another family member but it is creating bad blood among the relatives.

A CALL to ALL ARTISTS
A few days ago Joan Duran our long time collaborator and Moi Moi a graphic artist and conceptualist from the Yucatan returned from China after overseeing and supervising the publication of Binomium, a 416 page book involving the work Michael Gordon and myself. The release of this book on 4 September 2015 fits our philosophy that a society must have an optimistic attitude and aspiration toward the collection, production and promotion of knowledge. The book will go on sale first at Beepub Books in Bejing, China. In the morning of 26 June 2015 we will gather as an artistic community to declare a list of 20 Demands on the community and the state of Belize. I hereby invite all artists, musicians, poets, thinkers, historians, intellectuals, cultural activists, dramatists, film makers, dancers and supporters to join the Image Factory in presenting 20 ideas and plans for the next 20 years. Contact us for more information.

WOMAN IN THE HOUSE – The Wine of Astonishment
The most consistent theme of the Book of Psalms in the Holy Bible is that the prayers and supplications to Almighty God are for protection and grace, while requesting deliverance from one’s enemies, so that enemies and foes can be destroyed, that they may wither away. The most famous Psalm is the Twenty-Third, The Lord is My Shepherd. However there are one hundred and fifty Psalms, and trust in God for deliverance against enemies and evildoers flows throughout them. Psalm 60 is a Prayer after defeat in battle. It refers to God’s abandonment of his people, so that they suffered terrible losses. Verse 5 of the King James Version says: “Thou hast shewd thy people hard things; thou hast made us drink the wine of astonishment”. Modern versions of the Bible state “You have made your people feel hardships; You have given us stupefying [or intoxicating] wine”. Other translations refer to the “wine that makes us stagger”. I do not know the kriol translation of the Bible, but I would imagine it must be something like “di wine weh mek we fool fool”. The wine has so debilitated the people that they were entirely unable to defend themselves or even to have the ability to discern what is good for them. They were therefore completely routed and left devastated and absolutely downcast and despondent. The newer translations do not capture the poignant meaning of the verse quite as perfectly as “drink the wine of astonishment,” in referring to how the people’s senses were completely overcome, leaving them weak and powerless.

May Pen Road A Disaster!!
The May Pen Road in the rural area of Belize District is a total disaster today. Eight years of the UDP Government, and millions upon millions of Petrocaribe, has not seen any type of development in this beautiful community. The area representative, Edmond Castro, has been going to the people of May Pen asking them to support his candidacy for the UDP convention this coming Sunday. He has been telling them he has done a lot for Belize Rural North, but the evidence on the ground shows a different picture. Castro has actually done a lot for himself while representing Belize Rural North. There has been the visa hustling scandal, the misuse of funds from the Belize Airports Authority scandal, the Taiwan sexual assault allegations scandal and the land scandals. Castro has neglected the May Pen community allowing the access road to deteriorate immensely, which huge mud pools in various sections, almost making the road impassable.

Belize’s Shining Stars!! – High School Graduation Season 2015: Maud Williams High, St. John’s College, Canaan SDA High, Belize Rural High and Mount Carmel High
It’s the end of another high school year, and with it, the countdown towards Graduation Season 2015. And the BELIZE TIMES remains the ONLY national newspaper fully prepared to give you the run-down on the best and brightest emerging this year from Belize’s high schools. We kick things off at Maud Williams High School in Belize City. 51 of 53 graduates will march up on Thursday, June 4th, at the Holy Redeemer Parish Hall, starting at 6:00 p.m. Leading their ranks will be: Ms. Cassandra Sanker (Valedictorian, from Class 4S2, with an average of 93%), Ms. Eugenia Courtenay (Salutatorian, also of Class 4S2, with an average of 87.34%) and Ms. Stephanie Rivera (3rd place, will deliver the Vote of Thanks). The BELIZE TIMES interviewed Sanker and Courtenay at the school’s Racoon Street campus on Tuesday, in the midst of their Graduation Practice. For the pair of 17-year-olds, their journeys to the top, while not quite the same, share the thread of family. Ms. Sanker, a native of Hattieville Village in the Belize District, comes from a blended family – her mom, a step-father, and 8 siblings, of which she is the 2nd youngest. Courtenay’s family includes Fort George area natives – dad Eugene, mom Rona Young and grandfather Gilbert Young. And both have had to adapt – Sanker to the Belize City atmosphere (via constant travel to and from Hattieville), and Courtenay to the grind of SBA’s (school-based assessments), while studying for tests, doing homework assignments, etc.

Sedi, the UDP & Guatemala
If there is any issue that should cross all lines, including those of politics, it is the unfounded Guatemalan claim. It is for this reason that the Opposition People’s United Party has played an important role in the process of finding an acceptable solution to the claim. The PUP’s position, as defined under the leadership of the Father of the Nation Rt. Hon George Price, is that there shall be no ceding of land or water to Guatemala and that our sovereignty and territorial integrity are intact and must be respected. For the People’s United Party, Belize’s foremost nationalist party, and the radical movement that defied the British colonial masters to gain Independence, there could be no other position. This is why the capitulations to Guatemala by the current UDP Government and Foreign Minister Sedi Elrington have led to what the PUP Leader Hon. Francis Fonseca called a “breach of trust” between the Government and the Opposition.

Breaking Belize NewsPJ

Fatal collision in Cayo claims one life and injures another
Information reaching our news desk is that there was a fatal traffic accident last night in Cayo between a motorcycle and a bus. According to reports, two men were driving on a motorcycle and upon reaching Gallardo’s, they collided into a passenger bus. The victims have been identified as Isaac […]

Authorities make major gun bust in Corozal
Yesterday morning, authorities in Corozal made a major bust of weapons in Carolina Village. According to reports, police recovered the following weapons in the village: an AMC 9mm pistol containing 5 live rounds of 9mm ammunition, a .45 pistol which was found in an abandoned house, and 1 MAK 90 […]

PTA of Sacred Heart Primary School Hosts Fair
The Parents and Teachers Association (PTA) of Sacred Heart Primary School in San Ignacio Town is currently hosting an exciting fundraising event at the Macal River Park. According to a member of the PTA, the initiative is to help raise funds for needed school projects and the school has invited […]

Belmopan police caught with 6 grams of marijuana
A police in Belmopan has been arrested for drug possession. According to reports, Brighton Fuentes, a police officer who is attached to the Belmopan Branch was arrested yesterday when he was found with 6 grams of marijuana. Fuentes has since been placed on interdiction.

Man dies in cane truck mishap
Orange Walk police are investigating an incident that took the life of a Xaibe Village resident. Best information to our newsdesk is that a cane delivery driver was sleeping under his truck when his partnered allegedly drove off, running over and dragging the individual. The victim was rushed to […]

Hit and Run claims the life of 40 year old Sandy Sedassy
At approximately 9:30 p.m. Police were called to the scene of a fatal hit and run incident that claimed the life of 40 year old, Sandy Sedassy of Esperanza Village. Initial investigation is indicating that Sedassy was travelling in an eastern direction when he was knock down by a pick […]

Guatemalan Protesters want President Otto Perez Molina to ‘resign now’
Weekly protests in Guatemala that started back in April will continue this weekend in an attempt to force President Otto Perez Molina to step down from his position. With corruption at the midst of the Government’s crumbling, pleads for Molina to step down have significantly increased after his Central […]

Sports Ministry to support Belize Jaguars from afar
Information to Belize Media Group is that the Belize Jaguars won a friendly with Guatemalan First Division side Heredia in Guatemala, 3-1, on Thursday night, Deon McCauley among the scorers. The Jaguars are preparing for the two-leg second round CONCACAF World Cup Qualifying tie with the Dominican Republic […]

More delays for sporting grounds in Belize City
The MCC Grounds and Marion Jones Sporting Complex, Belize City’s two largest sporting facilities, were both closed for much of 2014 and in the case of the latter, for the last several years due to ongoing renovations. Both are now partially open and in use however, according to […]

Youth leadership forum promises solutions
The Belize Youth Leadership Forum kicked off today at the Gateway Youth Center, bringing over 120 youth leaders and adult leaders from around the country together to address key issues affecting youths, and to begin reaching important solutions. Among the topics spoken about were migration, jobs, crime, citizen […]

Blogs

“Maybe I’m Amazed” in San Pedro, Ambergris Caye, Belize.
To those of you that have missed me , thanks. Sorry I’ve been extremely lax in knocking out editions. To those of you that haven’t missed me I’ve only one thing to say! Why not ? Tomorrow Rose and I will celebrate (and it will be something to celebrate) our third anniversary of upping sticks and moving from London, England to Ambergris Caye, Belize. I must admit that this anniversary was not front of mind for me (not a lot is nowadays though) but the fact was highlighted for me when driving home from ‘Town the other day. Looking in my rear view mirror I could see a bicycle coming up on the inside of me and then I heard my name cried out. I pulled over and saw that it was a fellow Englishman who, funnily enough, arrived on the island exactly the same day as Rose and I. We spent the first few minutes catching up on what each of us have been doing recently and then he told me with great excitement that he’d been informed a few days previously that his application for Residency had been approved. And he’d be getting his paperwork within the next week or two.

Garifuna leaders meet with NDP leader Arnhim Eustace
In 1797 after the British finally defeated the Garifuna people after years of resistance, they removed them from their native homeland “Yurumein” now known as Saint Vincent & The Grenadines to Baliceaux an adjacent island. On this island after their Garifuna nation was dismantled they were; imprisoned, tortured, killed and the survivors estimated about 5,000 were taken to Roatan Honduras where they landed on April the 12th of that same year. Many Garifuna people disliked the conditions on this island and appealed to the British to find a better place for them. In 1801 some of these Garifuna people numbering about 150 left Roatan and sailed to Belize. They were granted permission by the British to settle in the southern part of Belize in a town they named “Dangriga”. In 1823 after the slaughtering of some Garifuna men, women and children in San Juan Honduras, a large contingent of Garifuna people led by Elijio Beni and Satulle left the country to join their people in Dangriga where they live up to this day. The British also made a deal with the Spanish crown and some of them were allowed to settle along the coast of Honduras. During these negotiations most of their names were changed from their original names to Spanish names to hide their true identities. During the nationalist and civil wars in Honduras, many Garifuna people fought in these battles and were killed. As a result of these wars and the British occupation of Bluefield Nicaragua, some Garifuna people migrated to neighboring Nicaragua, Guatemala, Belize and later on to the United States of America. No matter which country the Garifuna people live, they all identify themselves with their motherland “Yurumein”. It is and remain the dream of all the Garinagu people in the diaspora, that one day the people and government of their motherland “Yurumein” will acknowledge their rights to this nation as theirs as well. Garifuna people’s intentions has never been and will never be to deny the citizenship and rights of all their brothers and sisters who became citizens of “Yurumein” after March 11th 1797. Why? Because the Garifuna people’s history has always been to stand up and fight for the injustices committed against other human beings.

Sunset sail in Belize: Sometimes this really is Paradise
It is Friday evening, nearly 5 p.m., and the Lady Leslie feels as eager to slip its bonds and head to sea as we, its passengers, do. This is, after all, a sunset cruise, and the ostensible reason for our sail seems to be too rapidly slipping toward the western horizon of Ambergris Caye, the Belize island on which we all live. There are about a dozen of us on board, all ex-pats who have staked a claim in tropical island living. We gather on the fore section of this 38-foot catamaran, on beanbag chairs and a comfortable webbed trampoline, perfect for stretching out as the blue-green Caribbean slips past beneath us. Among us are a family of four from Canada who recently bought a large beach house north of town; an English couple who have lived and worked on the island for at least seven years; a Midwest couple who bought a vacant lot years ago and are now building their dream home; and a recently retired couple from Los Angeles who are renting south of San Pedro Town as their fourth-floor condo is being built.

‘Recovery: Belize’ — an Off Off Off Broadway musical in development
Scene: A hospital recovery room in Belize. It is devoid of color, character and any hint of modernity. I think of the style as “institutional gothic.” It is early evening, there are six beds, all of them filled. Three are young men in their late teens, early 20s. All three have broken right legs, plus scrapes, bruises. Two have their right arms in casts. All have been in motorcycle accidents. On the other side of the room in the bed closest to the door is a young guy whose lungs were punctured in a knife attack outside of a Belize City nightclub on Saturday night. In the middle bed is a much older — and very caucasian — expat, looking very, very lost. In the bed closest to the window is Franklin Grant, a quiet and gentle rasta guy with a scraggly beard, red eyes and no legs. Over each bed is a dusty metal fan. They sweep the room 24-7 and provide what little relief there is from the heat. No air conditioning, no nurse’s call button, no button to adjust the beds. Into the room bursts the busily portentous and bald headed doctor followed a retinue of young women in white, all carrying clipboards or notebooks, with two doctorly looking men trailing. Probably interns. They carry no notebooks and project studiously bored looks.

International Sourcesizz

Tim Sise shows the light to students in Belize
It was Abraham Lincoln who once said that no man is so tall as when he stoops to help a child. There probably aren’t may who stopped as far, at least literally, as Tim Sise, a former Siena basketball standout from 1978-to-1982. Sise, a native of Amsterdam and a graduate of the old Bishop Scully High School in Amsterdam, sent along a photo from Belize, where he has undertaken a variety of projects to aid a small community in that Central America country. It is a photo in a classroom, of young students lined up in a pose with Size, all 6-foot-9 of him. The children all come up to about Sise’s waist. The top of Sise’s head is several inches higher than a large chalkboard behind him. Yes, there had to be a considerable stoop for Sise to get down to the level of the children that one of his projects have benefited.

Tradewinds starts today
BEGINNING TODAY, military and security forces from Caribbean nations will join the United States, Canada, the Kingdom of the Netherlands, Mexico, and the United Kingdom for maritime security and disaster response training at Camp Springfield in St Kitts as part of Exercise Tradewinds 2015. This year’s Exercise Tradewinds will be conducted in three phases. Phase I will include maritime and land operations, which will take place in St Kitts and Nevis through June 9. Phase II, in Belize from June 15 to 24, will include maritime and land operations, including United States Marines and Phase III, a Key Leader Seminar, will be conducted July 14 to 16 in Miami for key stakeholders and decision makers from the region. Exercise Tradewinds supports the Caribbean Basin Security Initiative (CBSI), a U.S. Department of State regional security partnership.

On Facebook and streets, Guatemalans demand president’s resignation
Guatemalan protesters took to the streets yesterday calling on President Otto Perez Molina to resign following scandals that have already brought down his central bank chief and key cabinet members. Protesters chanted “el pueblo unido jamas sera vencido” (the people united will never be defeated) banged drums and sang the national anthem on a march from the National Palace in Guatemala City to the nation’s Supreme Court. “We are sick of the corruption. These ministers are the worst ministers we’ve ever had. We need reform,” said Alejandro Enes, a 45-year-old heart surgeon toting a sign that said, “out with the corrupt officials”. In what he termed a symbolic act, salesman Julio Garcia, 68, wielded a toilet plunger. Recent scandals have seen Guatemala’s central bank chief Julio Saurez indicted for fraud, the vice president Roxana Baldetti resign and various cabinet members quit or be fired. Civic leaders, including 1992 Nobel Peace Prize laureate Rigoberta Menchu, the country’s professional association of attorneys and the Center for the Defense of the Constitution called this week for Perez Molina to follow. “Democracy is collapsing and therefore Otto Perez Molina must resign,” Marco Sagastume, the head of the Guatemala’s attorneys association, told reporters this week.

The concept of the Caribbean as a single economic unit may not have longevity
Earlier this year, Owen Arthur, the former Prime Minister of Barbados, described the malaise that now affects much of the anglophone Caribbean. Delivering the 15th Archibald Nedd Memorial Lecture in Grenada, Mr Arthur observed that the typical Caribbean nation now has to rely for material progress on economic systems that are no longer viable. “Conditioned for centuries to depending upon preferential access to foreign markets for their exports, on high levels of domestic protection for their industries, and on generous access to concessional financing to support their development, almost every Caribbean nation, has now to face the prospect of building economic systems without the benefit of such props,” he said. He also observed that at the same time most Caribbean states had evolved social sectors that are too large to be carried by economies undergoing transition, and that “the entitlements now afforded to citizens must be paid for in new and sometimes traumatic ways.”

Videos

  • Manatee Encounter in Belize, 1min. Encounter with an Antillean manatee (Trichechus manatus manatus) off Soldier Caye, Turneffe Atoll, Belize.

  • Snorkel / Etude, 7min. Hol Chan Marine Reserve, Shark Ray Alley Ambergris Caye, Belize

  • CARNIVAL CRUISE VLOG - (BELIZE - WESTERN CARIBBEAN), 4min.

  • Michelle Obama Push-ups with Althea Moses on A Taste of Belize TV Show, min. Althea Moses talks fitness with Sandra Gillett (Host of A Taste of Belize TV show). Michelle Obama inspired push-ups for toned-sculpted arms.

  • Belize in 4k - Lamanai Ruins, 4min. Watch as we trek up the Mayan Ruins of Lamanai in Belize. Shot in 4k using an HTC One M9.

  • AGS AT WUB(WAKE UP BELIZE) MORNING SHOW, 47min. AGS Ty ,Deta And Matic..went on WUB morning show on May 8 to discuss about their new album,not getting the support and how their music is influencing ghetto youths in the Community.Please help and support the local artist.


  • Top
    #504746 - 05/31/15 12:03 PM Re: Today's Belize News: May 31, 2015 [Re: Marty]
    Marty Online   happy
  • RAF Belize 1991 Part 1, 6min. Central News East report from RAF Belize Broadcast 15th July 1991

  • Belize 2015, 5.5min. Belize Fly fishing.

  • Altun Ha - Belize - Go Pro, 3min. Mayan Ruins of Belize.

  • 2013 New Year's Fireworks - Caye Caulker, Belize, .5min. 01 January 2013. Caye Caulker, Belize. New Year's Eve fireworks in the rain as everyone danced 2012 away.

  • Steve from kremfm Belize, 1.5min.

  • RAF Belize Part 2, 6min. Central News East reports on personnel from RAF Wittering posted to Belize in Central America. Broadcast 16th July 1991

  • RAF Belize Part 3, 6min. Central News East report on RAF and army operations in Belize and the role played in trying to stop the illegal drugs trade. Broadcast July 17th 1991

  • Dell Smart - Children Children, 3.5min. Music video for Children Children performed by Dell Smart.

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