Belize Works toward Laboratory to Certify Quality of Locally Made Goods
The Belize Bureau of Standards in collaboration with the CARICOM regional Organization for Standards and Quality (CROSQ) with the support from the German Metrology Institute, PTB, hosted a workshop today on promoting dialogue between the national Quality Infrastructure and the Agriculture sector in Belize. The initiative is to build awareness and understanding of the significance […]
Venezuelan Ambassador Comments on the Spending of PetroCaribe Funds
And while the initiative is celebrating the tenth anniversary, in Belize there has been many concerns raised especially from the opposition, People’s United Party and some social partners about how the monies are being used. Today Venezuelan Ambassador, Joel Perez Marcano was asked whether the Venezuelan Government is concerned about how the money is used […]
10-Year Celebration of PetroCaribe Brings Venezuelans to Belize
An official ceremony marking the tenth anniversary of PetroCaribe was conducted this morning at the Memorial Park in Belize City. Incidentally, a Venezuelan vessel, Simon (see-mon) Bolivar is in Belize’s waters with the presence of several military personnel and diplomats. Addressing the gathering this morning was Belize’s Ambassador to the Bolivarian Republic of Venezuela, Her […]
Guatemala’s Coast Guard Will Be Fined for Damages to the Reef
With this incident happening less than two weeks after the incident at Sarstoon Island in southern Belize, all eyes are on the Government of Belize to see just how they will respond. The keen attention from Belizeans comes after it was widely believed that Belize’s response to the Sarstoon incident on May 28 was meek […]
Southern Border Indigenous Communities Meet to Discuss Peace
Maya Q’eqchi leaders of Belize were in Peten, Guatemala for a 3-day trip to meet with their neighbors in southern Peten to discuss ideas and talk on efforts to unite on issues surrounding the environment, social and economic problems, particularly in the border area with Belize and Guatemala. The three day visit began in Poptun, […]
Elections and Boundaries Lays Out Timeline for Bi-Elections
With the recent announcement of the upcoming bi-elections for the Dangriga electoral division which includes the areas of Hope Creek and Sarawee, personnel have been busy making preparations for the elections process. The department issued a press release today relevant to those who wish to contest the bi-elections as well as voters of the division. […]
Bradley Awards Council Employees with House Lots
Fifty seven acres of land along mile 14 on the George Price Highway has been sub-divided into two hundred and seventeen plots of measurements 80 by 100. The land was acquired from the Ministry of Natural Resources by the Belize City Council as part of the council’s Employee Land Program which was initiated last year. […]
How Secure are Belizeans in Belize?
One of the questions that arose out of the entire incident of the Guatemalan vessel being able to come in our waters, particularly, in the still of the night when Belize was sleeping, was what level of national security does the country have in terms of monitoring those who are approaching or have come into […]
Guatemalan Military Vessel Runs Aground on Glover’s Reef
Just before midnight last night six Belizeans, five men and a woman, who were stationed at Glover’s Reef were alarmed at the sound of a loud bang in the area. Upon further inspection of the source of the disturbance, it was then that the two Fisheries Officers who approached the area first, found out that […]
Family demands justice for son’s beating death
A post-mortem examination conducted on Tuesday afternoon in Belize City confirmed the worst fears of the family of 18 year old Hilberto Sotz, the teenager detained by Caye Caulker police on Monday and found to have died while in their custody...
Petrocaribe “explained” by Senator Hulse
In the wake of revelations by Minister of Education and Collet representative Patrick Faber during a political convention on Sunday that Petrocaribe funds were spent on a jaunt by constituents to Corozal, those fighting for law and order have come out swinging, contending that such spending was not ...
Garifuna community wants communal land rights
PlusTv visited the beautiful village of Hopkins last Friday where the village council and concerned villagers gathered to share with us several issues they are having with Central Government...
Immigration Minister defends GOB actions at Sarstoon
Prime Minister Dean Barrow recently shrugged off reporters asking him about his reported order to extract Belize National Coast Guard personnel from Sarstoon Island near the southern border with Guatemala after an apparent stand-off with Guatemalan Coast Guard personnel...
Fate of Marcel Cardona soon to be determined
We have been reporting on attorney and former Orange Walk East area representative Marcel Cardona, who faces a year’s suspension from practicing the legal profession after the General Legal Council determined that he had set out to pervert the course of justice and allegedly conspire with and bribe ...
En Croix School of Dance preps for annual production
On Thursday June 11th the En Croix school of Dance, in Belmopan will be having its annual end of year production and they are inviting everyone to come out and support their young ballerinas ages 2 to 15 who have been diligently practicing their twirls, leaps and pointés to put off a good performan...
BWS launches water system for Belize River Valley
Villages of the Belize River Valley from Scotland Halfmoon to Rancho Dolores have had to make do with the increasingly iffy water source of the mighty Belize Old River that gives the valley its name...
Two Officers Charged for Murder of Caye Caulker teen
And it seems the family of 18 year old Hilberto Sotz, will not have to wait around too long for justice to be served as authorities are charging two of their own with first degree murder. They are Police Constables Nelson Nunez and Hallet King...
Guatemalan Caught With Mayan Jade Artefact.
Orange Walk Police detained one man of Guatemalan Nationality, pending charges for the illegal possession of a Maya jade artefact. The artefact is suspected to be Maya ceremonial chain with a jade pendant typical worn by the High priests of the ancient Maya...
Teenager killed in police custody
Residents of Caye Caulker Village took the streets of that island on the evening of Monday, June 8 and rioted after they got the news that 18 year-old Hilberto Sotz died while being detained for questioning in connection with a burglary.
That break-in happened on Sunday, and in an effort to try to solve it, the police started rounding up suspects and persons of interest. Multiple persons say that Sotz was away from the island when this incident happened, and so he couldn’t have been connected to it. They and his father, Saturino Sotz, assert that he arrived on the island early on Monday morning because he was away at his high school in Belmopan. Nevertheless, police picked him up that same morning, and detained him in connection with the burglary.
Now, the two versions of what happened to him while he was in lockdown are as different as night is to day. Residents, family and friends say that they have been informed by inside sources that Sotz was brutalized by officers as a plastic bag was placed over his head. They say that he suffocated to death because of the treatment of the police officers whose care he was in. They further accuse the police of trying to cover up their actions by rushing him to the community’s health center in an attempt to get the doctor on duty to declare that he died there instead of inside the police station.
Papa Mena to be new Dangriga representative - by election set for July 8
Dangriga, Hope Creek and Sarawee will be going into a by-election on Wednesday, July 8, 2015. This follows the resignation of up until Monday June 8, the representative for the Dangriga Constituency, Hon. Ivan Ramos.
In a release by government it states that, “his Excellency, the Governor General, Sir Colville Young, has issued a Writ of Election for holding a By-Election in the Dangriga, Hope Creek and Sarawee Electoral Division to fill the vacancy caused by the resignation of the Area Representative, Hon. Ivan Ramos.” The release goes on to state that, “the nomination day will be Monday, June 22nd, 2015 and the place of nomination of candidates will be the Dangriga Town Hall. The By-Election will be held on Wednesday, July 8th, 2015.”
The stage is now set for Frank ‘Papa’ Mena to take Dangriga as its new Area Representative. Mena has been very active in the constituency since he was elected as Standard Bearer for Dangriga on January 26, 2014. He has been the prime mover of the development that has been taking place in Dangriga and even before this he was one of the best Mayors that the municipality had seen. He held that position from 2006 to 2009.
2 cops charged for murder of Caye Caulker student
Police officers, 32 year old Police Constable #819, Hallet King, and Detective Constable, #628, Leonard Nunez, 43, both residents of Caye Caulker were taken to Magistrate’s court in Belize City where they were charged with murder.
The charges against both officers are in connection with the death of 18 year old student Hilberto Sotz who died while in the custody of Caye Caulker police on Monday June 8(see story on page...). a post mortem examination on Sotz’s body certified that he died of Vascular Shock, Pronounced Massive Heart Thrombosis and Acute Post Traumatic Cerebral Oedema, basically he had been subjected to physical abuse prior to his death.
Both men were brought to Magistrate’s Court by CIB head, Hilberto Romero and within a couple of minutes they were arraigned before Chief Magistrate Anne Marie Smith after which they were remanded to custody until July 14, 2015. They were then quickly escorted to an awaiting police van for immediate remand to the Belize Central Prison.
18 of top 26 PSE performers are from private schools, why?
Gabriel Pope of Bernice Yorke Institute of Learning is the most outstanding performer in this year’s Primary School Examinations. Placing second was Carrel Moralez of San Narciso R.C. school and Third was Sahil Hotchandani of Belize Elementary.
Pope scored 386 out of a possible 400 points, 96.5%. He is one of seven students from Bernice Yorke ranked amongst the top 25 P.S.E. candidates in the country this year. Not to be outdone is the Belize Elementary School which also has seven students ranked amongst the top 25 P.S.E. performers. Such outstanding performances by these institutions have the rest of the nation asking what exactly are Bernice Yorke Institute and Belize Elementary doing that our public schools aren’t. If the three students from Hummingbird Elementary are added to this list then that is 17 out of the top 26 P.S.E. scores coming from three private schools (6th best score from Shepherd’s Academy would make it 18 of 26). Why are private schools more effective institutes of learning than public/church institutions?
Many who have studied the operations of private and public schools believe it is not even fair to compare the two with test scores. Former US Congressman Dennis Moor says, “when comparing private school and public school test scores, it's like apples and oranges. Public schools have to take everyone, but private schools can be selective.” This may be true but selectivity is definitely not the issue in Belize. Private schools here pretty much accepts anyone who can afford to attend. There is no entrance test for primary school students in Belize; therefore, the private schools cannot select the smarter infants. Still, those who attend private schools are far more likely to excel academically than those who attend public/church schools. Why is this?
Krismar Espinosa convicted of manslaughter of female minor
A jury of eight men and four women found Krismar Espinosa guilty of manslaughter in the death of Rachel Chun on Wednesday, June 3. Chun was killed on September 14, 2007 in Orange Walk Town. Her body was discovered by police shortly after 10 p.m. on September 16, 2007, when police were led to an unfinished concrete house on Santa Familia Street where they found her decomposing body. Chun’s head was smashed with a cement block which fractured her skull and jaw. Police investigations resulted in the arrest and charge of Espinosa.
The jury for Espinosa’s trial before Justice Herbert Lord was selected on April 15, 2015. During the trial, two pastors testified that the accused went to their house on the night of September 16, 2007 and confessed that he had killed Chun and left her body at the house on Santa Familia Street in Orange Walk Town. According to the two pastors, they then advised Espinosa to turn himself in to the police. The two pastors then went to report the matter to police and led Cpl. Elron Carcamo to the scene of the crime. In trial, three witnesses identified Espinosa as the last person seen with the deceased on September 14, 2007.
Edward Flowers arraigned for assault with a Firearm
Businessman Sanjay Pilgrim, 29, is accusing Gill Street resident Edward Flowers, 26, of pulling a gun at him and threatening his life. Flowers appeared in the Belize City Magistrate’s Court on Monday, June 8, to answer to a single charge of aggravated assault with a firearm upon Sanjay Pilgrim. He was unrepresented when Chief Magistrate Anne Marie Smith read the charge.
Sanjay Pilgrim told police that he was at home on Freetown Road at about 1:30 p.m. on Saturday, June 6, when Flowers approached and pointed a gun at him. Police responded to reports of an incident on Freetown Road and saw Flowers walking away from the scene when they arrived. He was detained and taken to the police station to be charged.
Phillip Neal, 45, charged for a number of burglaries and theft
Phillip Neal was granted bail for two counts of theft on Thursday, June 4, but that was taken away shortly after when he was brought back before the court an hour later to answer to two counts of burglary.
On Thursday Neal was taken before Senior Magistrate Sharon Fraser to answer to two counts of theft. Allegations are that on May 17 he stole a sack of rice, an ice cooler, a live chicken, assorted meats and electronic items from Chinese businessman Yuan Sheng He. Then on June 1 he allegedly stole two car batteries belonging to Bjana Bradley. He was unrepresented in court and pleaded not guilty to the charges. There was no objection to bail by court prosecutor, Inspector Hector Rodriguez; even though police say Neal was caught on surveillance camera. Bail was offered in the sum of $3,000 plus one surety of the same amount.
Wababa Zee Noralez remanded for attempted burglary
Wababa Noralez, 27, who beat a murder charge for the 2007 shooting of Kurlin Felix is tonight at the Belize Central Prison on remand for attempted burglary. Noralez was arraigned before Chief Magistrate Anne Marie Smith on Monday, June 8, for attempting to burglarize the home of Carolyn Neal, 35, at #14 Baracat Street, Belize City.
Noralez appeared unrepresented in court but told the Chief Magistrate that he will be represented by Audrey Matura-Shepherd who was a no show. He said police told him they were picking him up for a murder then they charged him with attempted burglary. He claims police are targeting him and that the victim fabricated the story. Noralez then pleaded not guilty to the charge when he was told that he can put up his defense during trial. Chief Magistrate Smith chose to defer bail consideration for June 19, 2015. Until then, Noralez will be held on remand at the Belize Central Prison.
Former Fire Chief killed in Dangriga
Fifty one year-old Ralston Patnett, the former Fire Chief, was brutally killed in Dangriga on Monday, June 8, 2015. To make matters worse, his attackers then burnt his body in a car, possibly in an attempt to destroy evidence.
Police arrived at the scene on the Commerce Bight Road at around midday. What they found at the location was Pattnet’s charred remains. His vehicle was parked right in front of a house that he maintained for his American friend. Right now, investigators believed that he was just about to get out of the car, when the person or persons shot him to death and set him on fire.
Pattnet was a dedicated public servant, and his disturbing murder has shocked the community. His sister has indicated to the press that one possible motive is a land dispute he was involved in. He was transferred as Fire Chief from Orange Walk to Stann Creek, but he applied for early retirement.
Michael Rowland charged for death of his brother
Michael Anthony Rowland, 42, was charged for killing his brother on Monday, June 8. According to police reports, on February 17, 2014, Michael Anthony Rowland reported to police that his brother, Lester Eduardo Yorke, 61, went missing. After the report was made, police investigation led to the discovery of Yorke’s body inside a concrete vat at his residence, #20 Guerrero Street. Police learnt shortly after that the last time Yorke was seen alive he and his brother, Michael Rowland, had a misunderstanding. Rowland had admitted that he pushed his brother and as a result he fell to the ground and went unconscious. Allegations are that Rowland then placed his brother’s body into the concrete vat and left him there. This altercation occurred on February 7, 2014, and Yorke’s body was found in the vat on February 17, ten days later, in an advanced state of decomposition.
Denfield Tasher Jr. on Remand for Pulling Gun
Denfield Tasher Jr., 26, is at the Belize Central Prison on remand for allegedly pulling a gun at Mark Anthony Rocke, 26, and threatening to kill him. Tasher was unrepresented when he appeared before Chief Magistrate Anne Marie Smith on Monday, June 8. He was read a single charge of aggravated assault with a firearm and pleaded not guilty to the offense.
According to police report, at about 2:30 p.m. on Friday, June 5, Denfield Tasher pulled up at CNC Meat Shop in the Michael Finnegan Market. Rocke, who works at the shop as a butcher, told police that Tasher approached him with a gun in the right side of his pants front and said, “Ah wah kill yuh right now ahn go back dah jail”. According to Rocke, Tasher had his finger on the trigger of the gun which made him fearful for his life. Rocke went to report the matter to police shortly after the incident and Tasher was arrested.
Jeffrey Thomas remanded for Mahogany Heights shooting
Mahogany Heights has been the location of several murders and shootings in recent months; many of which have gone unsolved. However, police have made an arrest in the latest shooting out of the area. 20-year-old Jeffrey Thomas is at the Belize Central Prison on remand for allegedly shooting Melvin Smith on Tuesday, June 2.
According to a police report, at about 10 p.m. on Tuesday there was a shooting in the area in which a gunman fired several shots at Smith. One of the bullets grazed him on the foot and he was taken to the Karl Heusner Memorial where he was treated and released. Based on information received, police detained Thomas on Wednesday, June 3, and charged him with the attempted murder of Smith who identified him as the shooter. No motive has been established for the shooting as yet, says police.
Darrell Bradley set for Caribbean Shores
"We are not campaigning on a promise, we are campaigning on a record," was what Darrell Bradley told the gathering of over a thousand Caribbean Shores voters on Sunday June 7 as he was officially endorsed as the UDP's Standard Bearer for that constituency for the upcoming General Elections.
It was a fun filled event with giveaways and music by the Sweet Pain Band, Chico Ramos and Poots 'Tittyman' Flores. Those present also got an opportunity to hear Hon. Dean Barrow express that there are those who think that Darrell can do nothing more to supersede what he has already done, but he pointed out that Darrell keeps on working. Even as he is embarking on the path to the National Assembly, the P.M. commended the Mayor for looking after the welfare of employees at City Hall. "He could have said let that worry be for the next person who follows him, but instead he is doing it himself," cited the PM as he commended Bradley for securing house lots for CITCO employees. He continued to explain that as Mayor, Bradley has served the city with a degree of commitment that is unequal and his dedication to the wellbeing of the city will continue in full measure until the day he wins the general election.
Ivan Ramos Resigns
On Sunday June 7, Hon. Ivan Ramos held a joint Mother's and Father's day celebration for his Dangriga constituents during which he announced that he will no longer be the area representative . He said that effective the following day, Monday June 8, he would tender in his resignation as a member of the National Assembly. True to his word, by 8 on Monday morning the resignation letter was submitted to the Clerk of the National Assembly who notified the Speaker of the House of Representatives, Hon. Michael Peyrefitte who accepted the resignation.
The PUP is now left scrambling and even worse, contemplating to not even contest the by-election. But Ramos' decision was one which may be taken as a man's right to stand the moral high ground despite the overall personal detriment that he will suffer. It is the very People's United Party who after having used Ivan Ramos, pushed him aside.
Orchestrated by the PUP's highest officers including Francis Fonseca, Godfrey Smith and Julius Espat- on May 13 it was announced that Ramos would be shoved aside for a new standard bearer in Dangriga, Anthony Sabal. As he was being relegated to the background, Ramos would not go quietly. He went off with quite some stirring remarks, he noted that, "I don't entertain idle talk – I hate idle talk. This party has been engaged in too much idle talk and it is hurting the party. It is something I've said around the table before and I'm saying it again. You will cause your own destruction if you don’t desist from this behaviour". But while he had those choice words when he was ousted, it would not be until after he had decided to step down as representative that the full picture of his ouster began to unravel.
Two families attacked in Cayo, one woman...
A 39 year old woman from Orange Walk was shot in the Cayo District early on Thursday of last week. The incident occurred at the Flower Farm, located about 2 miles into the More Tomorrow Area. Paula Zacharias was found lying face up with a gunshot to the left side of the neck whilst she was in a wooden building. At the time Paula Zacharias was with her family when a group of armed men came into the farm. They were looking to steal some pigs.
Elisa Garcia the Daughter of Paula Zacharias told the media that at about one am on Thursday, dogs began to bark at the farm and that was when her father checked through the window. But a short time later, her father reported seeing a white taxi that moved slowly and then someone from within it began to shoot. The father ordered Paula Zacharias to get down to the floor and while she was doing so, she was shot on her neck. The children who were in the same room did not hear any noise thereafter and everyone got out of the house to see if anybody was there and on their return they examined their mother; only to discover that she was already dead.
Three years in jail and $10,000 fine for 17 kilos of weed
Richard Smith, 35, Jason Phillips, 29, and Kent Nunez, 30, have been found guilty of trafficking 17 kilograms of weed near the Belize western border. The men were busted by police on May 6, 2014 near the Belize/Guatemala border in Benque Viejo. According to police constable William Castillo, he saw two men carrying a bulky bag from Pugas Farm to a maroon vehicle parked on the side of the road. He says they placed the bag in the trunk of the vehicle and that was when police approached and conducted a search. Inside the bag police found what they suspected to be a large quantity of cannabis. The vehicle was being driven at the time by Kent Nunez. Jason Phillips and Richard Smith were the ones PC Castillo saw taking the bag to the vehicle. All three were detained and taken to the police station where the substance was tested and measured. It proved to be 17,233 grams of weed. The men were charged with drug trafficking.
Belize Elementary School girls and San Pedro Roman Catholic
The Belize District Primary Schools Football Competition came to an end on Tuesday 9 June, 2015, with the District championship played at the MCC Grounds.
In the girls’ championship game, Belize Elementary School defeated San Pedro Roman Catholic School by the score of 2-1 to capture the 2014-2015 Belize District Title. The goals for the Belize Elementary School were scored by Alyanna Musa and Riana Chebat in penalty kicks.
In the first game of the girls’ championship, San Pedro Roman Catholic School defeated Holy Redeemer School in penalty kicks by the score of 4-2. The goals for San Pedro Roman Catholic School were scored by Shalini Young, Mayranie Panti, Erica Pop and Babee Lopez. For Holy Redeemer School, the goals were scored by Wayreni Gillett and Jazanni Rodriguez.
In game two, Belize Elementary School defeated Burrell Boom Methodist School by the score of 2-0. The goals for Belize Elementary School were scored by Jadon McGregor.
Belize District Firms Basketball competition rolls on at Bird’s Isle
The Belize District Basketball Association Firms competition continued last Saturday 6 June, 2015, at the Bird’s Isle with three games on the schedule.
In the first game played, Central Bank defeated the Generals by the score of 69-55. The top scorers for Central Bank were Jacob Leslie with 21 points, 5 rebounds and 3 steals; Benedict Terry with 13 points, 10 rebounds, 1 assist and 2 steals, and Farron Louriano with 12 points, 6 rebounds, and 1 assist.
For the Generals, the top scorers were Marshall Nunez with 11 points; Ron Nicholson with 10 points and 2 rebounds, and Wilfred Richards also with 10 points, 5 rebounds and 3 assists.
In the second game of the evening, Heritage Bank defeated Ready Call by the score of 90-63. The top scorers for Heritage Bank were Winston Pratt with 18 points, 8 rebounds, 5 assists and 3 steals; Devon Defour with 16 points, 5 rebounds, 1 assist and 2 steals, Steve Bonnel with 14 points, 5 rebounds, 1 assist and 2 steals, and Felix Martinez with 11 points, 4 rebounds,1 assist and 3 steals.
Belizean athletes to Central American Junior Championships
The Belize Athletics Association (BAA) contingent to the Central American Junior Championships, which is scheduled for June 12-14, 2015, in San Salvador, El Salvador, left the country today.
The contingent of 30 athletes and officials is travelling to El Salvador via Guatemala on road. The contingent received a grant of $5000.00 towards its expenses from the National Sports Council.
The contingent is expected to return back home on Tuesday 16 June, 2015.
San Pedro Tigersharks back to back National Elite Basketball Champions
The 2015 National Elite Basketball League championship came to an end on Sunday 7 June, at the San Pedro High School on San Pedro Ambergris Caye.
In the second and final game of the championship series, the defending champions the San Pedro Tigersharks wasted no time in closing this one out against the number one seed into the playoffs and the championship favourites the Cayo Western Ballaz when it upended it by the score of 61-55.
The top scorers for the budding champions were James Milton with 22 points, 16 rebounds and 1 assist, Darwin Leslie with 18 points, 6 rebounds, 4 assists and 3 steals,and Raul Roches who scored 6 points, 6 rebounds, and a steal and Densmore Edwards who also scored 6 points in a winning cause.
For the Cayo Western Ballaz who had to settle for the bridesmaid spot for a second consecutive year the top scorers were Richard Troyer with 21 points, 11 rebounds, and a steal, and Ivan Flowers who scored 10 points, 3 rebounds, and had 3 assists.
At the end of the championship game, Darwin Leslie of the San Pedro Tigersharks was named the Most Valuable Player.
National Primary Schools Football Championship this Friday
The National Primary Schools Football Championship for 2014-2015 will come to an end on Friday 12 June, 2015, at the MCC Grounds in Belize City.
The National Primary Schools championship is played for between the champions in both the boys’ and girls’ champions from all six geographic districts in the country.
The district championship is the final elimination process for the schools in the various districts. The team plays in their zone elimination at the urban, rural and then the district level before a champion is determined.
The Opening Ceremony will be held at the MCC Grounds at 8:30 am. The girls’ championship will be played at the MCC Grounds and the boys’ championship will be played at the Youth Hostel Field.
Belize Softball Federation names Junior Boys to National Team
The Belize Softball Federation selected the following 24 junior male softballers from across the country to try out for the 18 spots available on the National Junior Male Softball Team that is currently in training for the up-coming Central American Junior Male Softball Championship scheduled for Esteli, Nicaragua from September 4-7, 2015.
Francis presiding over the PUP’s fall from grace
The US President Ronald Reagan once said. “Politics is not a bad profession. If you succeed there are many rewards, if you disgrace yourself you can always write a book.”
The narrative which has been unfolding in the Dangriga Electoral Constituency and the one in Cayo North before that seems to suggest that that is what Francis Fonseca will be relegated to…writing a book. And the use of the word relegated in no way demeans the writers of books; it simply describes Francis as a writer because if we are to judge from his day to day performance his book will leave much to be desired. Francis is a disgraced Politician who orchestrated some of the most obscure and nefarious arrangements whilst being the Attorney General of this country. When Belizeans hear the words accommodation agreement only one name comes to mind – Francis Fonseca. He along with Said Musa and others presided over the wholesale giveaway of our nation’s assets and burdened the nation with the infamous Superbond. For five years Francis Fonseca flaunted his ineptitude, incompetence and impotence whilst in Government and in 2008 the Belizean people put him where he belongs- in opposition. It seems however that Mr. Fonseca cannot shed that skin of ineptitude, incompetence and impotence that has inexorably adhered to him. As a result, he is now evolving as the worst and most disgraced leader the People’s United Party has ever had.
Bully With Money
On Tuesday night when I heard Fonseca’s statement as he emerged from their emergency meeting, the more convinced I was that this politician lacks proficiency in communication skills and is light years away from presenting a viable political strategy to his Party.
It is sad when a political leader has to struggle to make a statement in reference to an INTERNAL situation affecting his supporters.
No doubt that deep down the general resentment causing the rift is the easy access to money by the present Government of Belize. All the lending agencies have increased their credit rating for our country compared to the dying effect which the blatant looting of the former Government had on these lending agencies.
It seems then that the Opposition would rather have a cash strapped government which would inevitably result in limited social programs and an abandoned infrastructure development, in like manner how they neglected our highways and streets during all the years they were in Belmopan. They would rejoice if we were in a dire economic situation just to have an EXCUSE for their coming back to office.
American Airlines Offers Direct Flight to Los Angeles
Belizeans coming home from Los Angeles for summer vacation and the September celebrations will not have to travel through Miami on American Airlines because the company now offers direct flights to the Phillip Goldson International Airport. On Saturday June 6, officials from American Airlines and the Ministry of Tourism, Civil Aviation and Culture welcomed the first visitors on American Airlines’ direct flights from Los Angeles.
Abil Casteneda, Acting C.E.O. in the Ministry of Tourism, says “We want to ensure that for visitors the Belize experience is convenient, safe and enjoyable.” Country Manager for American Airlines in Belize, Luis Alpuche, says, “We look at Los Angeles as a connecting point for people from Asia; especially Southeast Asia which is a fast growing market, and the surrounding areas of California.” Alpuche says he believes the West Coast market will continue to grow.
American Airlines is the second company offering direct flights from Los Angeles to Belize. Delta Airlines' inaugural flight from Los Angeles arrived in December of 2013. Both airlines have been prompted by the significant increase in overnight visitors experienced in the last few years. In 2014, Belize surpassed the 300,000 overnight visitors mark for the first time in history.
Collet’s CHEER Frustrating the Grinches
The three people most bothered by Government’s use of Petro-Caribe funds on social programs are: an individual who stole General Sales Tax collections; a pastor who can barely afford to keep his television station on the air and a business “leader” who had to depend on contraband bacon to keep his business afloat. While the people of Belize are the happiest they have ever been, these men wake up bitter and cold every morning. They are the Grinches trying to steal Belizean CHEER.
The most recent thing they are grumbling about early in the morning is the Collet Constituency Family Day in Corozal Bay. While other Area Representatives held Mothers’ Day banquets or distributed gifts to mothers with the Petro-Caribe supported Mothers’ Day Cheer allocation, Hon. Patrick Faber and the people of Collet decided to use their funds for a community retreat. The Collet committee decided to search for a venue conducive to bonding; however, they did not have to look very long because UDP supporters from the Corozal area volunteered to host Collet residents at Corozal Bay. The Collet Committee visited homes in the division and invited all residents to come out on Sunday, June 7, for a family trip to Corozal Bay and when the group left at about 7 a.m. on Sunday there were 22 buses loaded with Collet residents. In Corozal Bay the people of Collet played games together, danced, went swimming and just enjoyed each others company. It was a true day of healing as they were served by UDP supporters from the Corozal area. Those receiving the greatest reviews are the committee members from the San Narciso Committee who, by all accounts, did an excellent job on the barbecue grill. The people of Collet had a great time together – it was a retreat much needed.
Caye Caulker Chronicles
Father of PSE Top Scorer Speaks About Parenting
Gabriel Hope, scored a whopping 96.5% in the 2015 PSE exams making him the top scorer of the year. Understandably, his parents are extremely proud of the honor and pride Gabriel has brought not only to their household but to their entire community and school.
But have you ever wondered how a child grows up to become a top PSE scorer?
In an interview with LoveFM News, Gabriel’s father says that for starters, it helps to have an involved father and a stable home.
Caye Caulker Residents Hold Peace Vigil
Caye Caulker residents held a peace vigil to appeal for calm and peace in the village. Gilberto Sotz, an 18 year old high school student, died on Monday evening while in detention at the Caye Caulker police station. He was being detained for questioning in relation to a sting of burglaries which had occurred on the island leading up to his detention.
Two police men have been charged for murder, and the remaining police contingent stationed on the island when the death occurred have been put on interdiction. These are WPC#1107 Bernadette Ramos, PC#1932 Edilberto Patt and Corporal Kirby Palma. They are facing 13 disciplinary charges. Despite facing stormy and inclement weather, over 150 villagers showed their support. They walked through the village streets chanting “We want justice!” Due to the weather, the vigil lasted about an hour.
Have you ever wondered what the Giant Caye Caulker Cave looks like?
The Giant Caye Caulker cave system in Belize is thought to be one of the largest cave systems in the world. The entrance is located only 50 yards or so from shore on the lagoon side of the island. The cave is thought to be one of the most extensive in the world, extending under the Split and Caye Caulker for large distances. The entire cave has not yet been explored, but it’s pretty extensive.
As you can see from this map compiled by the Belize Cave Diving Society, entire Caye Caulker neighborhoods sit atop the cave.
Former Hicaquena Cindy Novelo Releases Her First Album
Cindy Novelo formerly of Caye Caulker but now of Lawrence, KS has just released her brand new album, “Meditation.” She will be appearing on June 14, 2015 on the River Trade Radio, hosted by Mikal Shapiro Music and Kasey Rausch Music, which airs every Sunday morning from 9-11am (CST) on KKFI 90.1 FM. You can stream live from anywhere in the world at at www.kkfi.org and enjoy it.
An award-winning musician and singer/songwriter, Cindy performs frequently both solo as an accompaniment musician, having supported many internationally acclaimed singer/songwriters, including Cary Cooper and Tom Prasada-Rao, Don Conoscenti, Johnsmith, Kelley Hunt and Grammy award-winning Nashville songwriter Jon Vezner.
Cindy has performed across the U.S, in Europe and Latin America, where she lived for 17 years and was a long-standing member of the
Breaking Belize News
Guatemala will not stop until we get some answers to some questions
By: Wellington C. Ramos Dear My Belizean People, There is no need for us to be surprise about this Guatemalan Gunboat landing on Belizean soil because this is not the first and will not be the last no matter which political party is in power until we get some answers […]
Government will pursue Guatemalan military over grounding
While Venezuela’s military vessels were invited to Belizean waters, two Guatemalan Coast Guard vessels strayed inside Belizean territory while transiting to Mexico. One of them ran aground on the Belize Barrier Reef in the Glover’s Reef atoll southeast of Belize City. Belizean officials are on the ground assessing […]
Venezuelan training ship visits Belize on Petrocaribe anniversary
Ten years ago this month, the Bolivarian Republic of Venezuela leagued with its fellow Caribbean and Central American countries to advance social development through its bountiful petroleum resources under the Petrocaribe program. It has become a buzzword in Belize, especially since the re-establishment of the program under the […]
Belize Bank Ltd. Awards Coca Cola Spelling Bee winner a Sixth Form Scholarship
The 21st, Annual National Coca Cola Spelling Bee grand final was held in Corozal Town at the Corozal Community College Auditorium. In attendance were 12 finalists supported by various primary schools, students and their coaches. After two rounds of elimination, Aaliyah Leiva from Louisiana Government School was declared the winner […]
Police close in on solving Dangriga murder
Police have in custody the men they believe shot fire chief of Dangriga Town Ralston Patnett in his vehicle on Sunday night, then set it on fire. Police say they have recovered what they believe is the murder weapon: a shotgun. Patnett, 51, was shot dead in front of the […]
PUP Orange Walk Mayor begs party to re-consider decision on by-election
Will the People’s United Party (PUP) contest the upcoming Dangriga by-election? Nothing has been decided, but even the possibility that the party may pull out has surprised many, not least of all the party’s own supporters. Some have spoken out on social media, particularly the mayor of Orange Walk Town, […]
Petrocaribe forum in Belize City postponed
Today in Belize City at the University of the West Indies (UWI), five influential speakers were scheduled to debate their views on the PetroCaribe Loans Act and the way it’s being used by the Belizean government. Everything was already prepared for the event but yesterday, Jane Bennett, UWI Open Campus […]
P.M. confident of victory in Dangriga by-election
The United Democratic Party (UDP) is preparing for a by-election to be called on July 8, 2015 in the division of Dangriga, following the resignation of its PUP area representative Ivan Ramos. The PUP has delayed its decision on whether to contest the by-election until it has assessed its situation […]
“Excellent” Candelaria Saldivar transferred from Ministry of Immigration
Now-former CEO of the Ministry of Immigration and Nationality, Local Government, NEMO, and Rural Development, Candelaria Saldivar-Morter, was three weeks ago placed on administrative leave. The relative of National Security Minister John Saldivar was a central figure in alleged misconduct at the Immigration Department when Elvin Penner was a Minister of […]
Chamber of Commerce says Petrocaribe Act amendments are “redundant”
The Belize Chamber of Commerce and Industry (BCCI) has taken up a position against the proposed amendments to the Petrocaribe Loans Act, 2015. Senator Mark Lizarraga, the appointee representing the business community and private sector, says that position came from a meeting of the BCCI executive with its attorneys and […]
Family of Hilberto Sotz claims vindication as officers charged
18 year old Hilberto Sotz’s injuries were not from natural causes, as contended by police on the island of Caye Caulker who detained him in a burglary investigation. A post-mortem examination confirmed the opposite view, that the teenager sustained trauma to the head from being beaten, possibly by police, before […]
Belize vs. Dominican Republic
Across the country of Belize, many are anxiously awaiting the clock to strike 2pm for the much anticipated football game between the national selection of Belize and the national team of the Dominican Republic. As the team prepares for today’s match, many are questioning who will be the man inside […]
Unauthorized military vessel ran aground on the reef in Southern Belize
Reports reaching our newsroom are that a Guatemalan military vessel ran aground on the reef in Southern Belize. According to reports, the incident happened sometime early this morning and the boat is still at the scene. Update at 10:33 am According to reliable sources, the Guatemalan boat is a GC651 […]
‘Troubling’ Times at University of Belize?
This morning, BMG received an email from a UB Student that details a number of critical issues that are affecting the national university. “I can tell that it’s not all cumbaya at our National University. Mr. Slusher has proven and continue to be incompetent and allow his personal qualms to […]
Dangriga: Ivan Ramos resigns
Whenever Hon. Dean Oliver Barrow, the Prime Minister of Belize and the Leader of the ruling United Democratic Party decides to call for general elections, it will be the fifteenth in the modern post-World War Two of what we now know as the nation of Belize.
On April 30th, 1954, 20 candidates, (9 Peoples United Party – General Workers Union; 9 National Party; and 2 Independents) contested for 9 seats in the first election under universal adult suffrage for the Legislative Assembly. The PUP-GWU won 8 seats and the election and their ascension ushered a new era of “home-rule” and the voters had given the first such elected “party in government” a mandate for self-government.
Building Materials Needed: Shopping Belize City
San Pedro, Belize probably has more hardware stores per square foot than most places in the world. But when you are looking for a large selection, more options and usually cheaper prices, many head to Belize City. Just a 20 minute flight or hour and a half boat ride away…
First stop, Brothers Habet to look at some tiles and bathroom fixtures. Notice the movie style posters on the outside. Awesome marketing in my book…
We next stopped at Marelco – the Yamaha dealer in Belize City. Bikes and boat motors.
On to the Macy’s of Belize – Mirab’s. Now located right near the water taxi and the cruise ship terminals, they are building a FOOTBALL field sized building out on the Northern Highway and moving…
Bought a few housewares – it really is the best for that…and headed out to the Northern Highway for tiles, tiles and more tiles.
And then the Home Depot of Belize – Benny’s Home Center. I can’t believe I had never been here before. The place is huge…and gorgeous.
6 Ways to spend a perfect day in San Ignacio Belize!
San Ignacio Town is located in the Cayo District and it’s a beautiful and diverse town worthy of visiting. Known as “El Cayo” this charming town is home to a bustling market, pristine rivers, amazing archaeological sites and Belize’s adventure hub.
Here are a few of the many things you want to do while visiting Belize’s San Ignacio Town:
Take a Journey to an Ancient Metropolis,
Meet the friendliest people,
Must have an authentic Belizean lunch,
Get to Know the Fascinating History of Belize,
Canoe down the meandering Macal River,
A Night Out in Town – Dinner and Drinks.
Guatemala Warship in Belizean Territory
Not sure if others are blind to this and why the international governing bodies are not taking action. Maybe our politicians and those that are in place to do so still can’t grow a pair to demand that action be taken against the aggressive behavior against Belize and Belizeans.
Recently there have been cases where Guatemalans illegally enter Belizean territory and squat right in the Adjacency Zone under the nose of the OAS. There is the case of Danny Conorquie that was shot at the Caracol Maya site in broad day light. Then we have the case of the Belize Territorial Volunteers that were harassed and abducted by the Guatemalan military from Belizean waters. Yet again we have the case where Belizean military were surrounded at the Island in the Sarstoon river that is well known to be inside Belizean territory. This all within the span of a year. And if you research you will find more stories where Guatemala has always been aggressive toward Belize and nothing is done.
Today the story is a Guatemalan military boat has infiltrated Belizean territory and has crashed into the barrier reef. If this is not a blatant act by Guatemala as a show of force mere days after surrounding our Military personnel on the Sarstoon Island.
We at FiWeBelize wonder what action will be taken by our Government and the international bodies to ensure that Guatemala knows it’s role and sit it’s ass down.. However, seeing the past actions of those in office and those with the hots for going to the ICJ, we will not be holding our breath for anything to be done. This will be another one of those, coil your tail between your legs and run into your dog house to hide.
Retiring to Affordable Belize? That Might be the Best Decision You’ve Ever Made
Finding a place to retire that’s more than a reasonable distance from your current abode can be fraught with complexity if you’re the worrying type. After all, retiring at home is stressful enough. Move abroad and things get complicated. But in many respects, finding an affordable destination and taking the leap can be the single most liberating decision you’ve made in years, once you see how nicely you can live on less at one of the most desirable destinations in the Caribbean.
Why choose Belize over typical retirement destinations like St. Lucia, Dominican Republic, Tulum, St. Thomas or Costa Rica? Because if you have a calculator—or you’re a pencil and paper person—math can tell the story. Browse real estate websites in a sampling of nations and compare property costs, but don’t stop there. It’s also wise to compare and contrast tax rates and cost of living, at which point, your decision could be a no brainer.
How will moving to Belize put you in a better financial light? First, you can do what so many retirees do when they choose Belize as their new home: Get rid of that heavy furniture that will cost you an arm and a leg to ship, and with those savings, buy gorgeous, affordable hand-crafted pieces once you arrive so you enjoy a complete fresh start. If you must schlep furnishings, take advantage of the Retired Persons Incentive Act: avoid duties up to $15,000 USD if your household goods are valued at under that amount.
IMF wants to know what PetroCaribe money was used for in St Vincent
The International Monetary Fund (IMF) says it is monitoring the potential impact of Venezuela's current economic stress on PetroCaribe, the country’s oil alliance with several Caribbean islands, and it also wants to know what PetroCaribe money was used for in St Vincent and the Grenadines (SVG), Merco Press reported.
According to SVG Prime Minister Dr Ralph Gonsalves, Caracas has invited PetroCaribe member countries to a meeting about “reaffirming” their commitment to the initiative, the brainchild of the former Venezuelan president, the late Hugo Chavez.
IMF Western Hemisphere advisor, Elie Canetti, told reporters that the IMF’s main concern “is that we know Venezuela is going through increasing financial stress, and oil prices have dropped from around US$120 a barrel to mid 70s a barrel and Venezuela is hugely dependent on selling oils.”
“So, we are mindful and concerned about the feasibility of PetroCaribe continuing, certainly at the level it has been, and we are looking into what will be the impact on Caribbean countries,” Cantelli said.
How Belize Is Tipping the Scales for Sustainable Fishing Worldwide
Belize just redefined marine conservation, entrusting its fishermen with a nationwide system of multi-species fishing rights for all its coastal fishing waters.
This landmark decision is a victory for communities on Belize’s Caribbean shore, allowing fishermen to create more food and jobs on land by replenishing more life and diversity in their seas.
But Belize’s move also has implications for the rest of the world. The government blazed a pioneering trail, with a powerful example that may prove a tipping point for sustainable harvests of coastal fisheries anywhere.
Belize raises the bar when it comes to marine conservation. The extraordinary Belize Barrier Reef, second in size only to Australia’s, hosts a rich diversity of mangroves, corals, seagrass and cayes teeming with life.
Offshore life also brought onshore health. As 3,000 fishermen harvest spiny lobster, conch and reef fish, they nourish Belizeans with an important source of healthy, locally-produced animal protein.
Yet fishery managers struggled to overcome illegal fishing that created a “tragedy-of-the-commons” dynamic of perverse incentives, which can bring a vicious spiral of depletion, poverty and food insecurity.
Caribbean Leaders to Discuss Growth at World Bank Forum
More than 200 business leaders and government representatives will gather in St. Lucia next week for a two-day forum organized by the World Bank to discuss sustainable growth in the Caribbean.
“This forum is an opportunity to take stock of the progress made and to identify innovative solutions to ignite growth in the region,” the World Bank’s vice president for Latin America and the Caribbean, Jorge Familiar, said Thursday in a statement.
The Third Regional Caribbean Growth Forum will bring together public and private sector representatives from St. Lucia, Trinidad and Tobago, Dominican Republic, Haiti, Belize, Jamaica, Barbados, Grenada, Guyana, Suriname, Antigua and Barbuda, Bahamas, Dominica, St. Kitts and Nevis and St. Vincent and the Grenadines.
Flight of the Valkyries, 4min. Trying out my new GoPro on a selfie stick whilst on a visit to Central America with my partner. We caught a flight between islands and ended up on a 4 seater prop plane flying from Belize to Roatan with fantastic views.
Water Taxi from Caye Caulker to Belize City, 2min. Water Taxi ride from Caye Caulker into Belize City. Ride was relatively smooth but took about 45 minutes. I bought round trip tickets in advance in Belize City and just showed up at the time i wanted to leave. They will generally do everything they can to get everyone onto the boat so it may be crowded. Enjoy Island Life!
San Pedro Express Water Taxi, Belize, 1min. The San Pedro Express water taxi route from Caye Caulker to Belize City. Ride is about 45 minutes from Caye Caulker, 90 Minutes from San Pedro on Ambergris Caye.
Zipline Belize 2015, 3min.
Belize Blue Hole Pt 1, 8.5min.
Belize Blue Hole Pt 2, 3.5min.
Belize Mission Trip 2015, 8.5min. A quick look into what our Belize mission trips look like!
HUMAN REMAINS FOUND IN COROZAL AS CONSTRUCTION TAKES PLACE, 4min. Last week Thursday construction workers unearthed a number of human remains in Corozal Town. Immediately police were called in, followed by the archaeological department who descended to Corozal to investigate the finding. With the assistance of second year Primary Education students from the Corozal Junior College, Archeological Research and Education Officers Antonio Beardall and Josue Ramos extracted the skeletal remains from burials located in the South End Bacadilla area of Corozal Town.
THE SAINT FRANCIS XAVIER CREDIT UNION QUIZ COMPETITION, 3.5min. Last week the 21st annual Coca-Cola National Spelling Bee competition took place in Corozal. At the end Aaliyah Leiva from Orange Wa