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#505150 - 06/12/15 11:52 AM Today's Belize News: June 12, 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

It’s RAIN-ing Happy Hour!!
We are always looking for that fabulous deal that makes us both look good and feel good. One place guaranteed to do both is the gorgeous Rain Restaurant and Rooftop Terrace! Don’t believe me? Well, when you take the stunning vistas of both the reef and lagoon side, AND couple it with the chic setting of the rooftop setting, and delicious drinks at the bar, believe me – it’s good to spend Happy Hour at Rain. And, if you linger long enough, oh those sunsets are GLORIOUS! Most Happy Hours are restrictive, but Rain has made the deal so sweet, you get to taste some delicious appetizers at special prices AND enjoy 50% off their cocktails! Five gazillion coconut mojitos for me please!!

Caye Notes: Fundraising for Jerome Mejia and Al Anon Family Groups
The community is being asked to kindly render assistant to one of its own: Mr. Jerome Mejia. Mejia has a brain tumor and needs to undergo numerous tests to help him with his illness; for this reason he requires substantial financial assistance. Mr. Mejia approached the San Pedro Town Council for an official endorsement to solicit funds from the general public/business community (financial or otherwise). Any assistance granted to Mr. Jerome Mejia will be greatly appreciated. Persons wishing to contribute can do so via Atlantic Bank Account # 210591536 Thank you in advance for your kind contribution. Al Anon Family Groups will be starting a 12 step meeting on Wednesday evening at 5:00PM in the Catholic Church Hall. The first meeting will be June 17th.

Major Jade find at Nim Li Punit
Archaeologists are thrilled with a major discovery made at the Nim Li Punit Archeological Site that yielded a jade pendant believed to be one of greatest finds in Belize. Located in Indian Creek Village in the Toledo District, Nim Li Punit was undergoing excavation after the recent unearthing of a burial chamber in early May. The major find of 26 ceramic pots and several jade pieces was made on Saturday, May 23rd, and has been classified as one of the most important discoveries since the Jade Head at Altun Ha. The excavation at Nim Li Punit, commonly known as Big Hat, was being led by Dr. Geoffrey Braswell, anthropologist with the Mesoamerican Archaeology Laboratory at the University of California in San Diego, USA. The discovery location believed to be the burial chambers of kings and queens between the Maya Classic Period around 800 A.D. “We were excavating in the royal palace of the site where the kings and queens of Nim Li Punit who lived from about 400 A.D. until after 800 A.D. But the discovery that was really exciting came from a much later tomb that dates to about 800 A.D. In it we found 26 beautiful pots, the nicest of which are displayed at the visitors’ center in Nim Li Punit. We also found an incredible jade pectoral, a piece of jade that would be worn around the neck of Maya kings for their rituals,” said Braswell.

Food Drive a huge success
The drive started at 10AM and went through until around 2PM. Volunteers made their way to various participating stores and businesses where the collection took place. The participating establishments were: Super Buy, Rocks Grocery Store, Paradise Market, Almaza, Reef Radio and TV. Caye Mart, Ritchie’s and Mark’s, Island City, Super Buy South, Marina’s and Mermaid Store. Both cash and food items were collected, including pet food for Saga Humane Society. “Feeding the hungry means feeding our island animals as well, so it was a natural decision to include Saga Humane Society, the island’s only non profit full service veterinary clinic, in the event. Founded in 1999 SAGA Humane Society serves to improve the general health and well being of the domestic and wild animals of the island. Community means all of us, and that includes our animals.

Elias Zetina represents San Pedro at 21st Annual Coca Cola National Spelling Bee
The 21st Annual Coca Cola National Spelling Bee took place on Friday, June 5th at the Corozal Community College Auditorium. 12 of the brightest spellers from across all six districts of Belize converged to test their skills hoping to claim the title of top speller. Among them was San Pedro’s very own Elias Zetina from New Horizon Seventh Day Adventist School, who had placed second in the Belize District Finals. Unfortunately, Zetina did not take top prizes at National, nevertheless he sure made his community proud. Participants in this year’s National Spelling Bee were Lavern Coe from Toledo Christian Academy, Gavino Teul from Santa Cruz Roman Catholic Primary School, Adrianne Young from Shiloh Seven Day Adventist Primary School, Santiago Chub from Our Lady of Bella Vista Primary School, Shandel Parham from St. Ignatius Primary School, Jafet Munoz from Trail Farm Government Primary School, Aaliyah Leiva from Louisiana Government Primary School, Benita Caal from Kuxlin Ha Government Primary School, Laura Menedez from Buena Vista Government Primary School, Aimee Gonzalez from Corozal Nazarene Primary School, Mishtony Castillo from Christiline Gill Seventh Day Adventist Primary School and Zetina.

American Airline launches direct flight between PGIA and LAX
Belize continues to expand its airways, and as such, now has a direct flight to Los Angeles, California, USA. American Airlines (AA) held its first inaugural flight between Philip S. W. Goldson International Airport (BGIA) and Los Angeles International Airport (LAX) on Saturday, June 6th. The addition of this new route is part of AA’s goal of further expanding its airline’s route network in Latin America. With this new flight, AA customers in Belize will have access to an extensive route network out of LAX, which includes more than 200 daily flights to more than 50 destinations throughout the USA, Europe, Asia, Latin America and the Caribbean.

Ambergris Today

Caye Caulke peace walk and candle vigil
Despite the bad weather, residents of Caye Caulker held a peace walk and candle vigil yesterday evening in observance of the death of Hilberto Sotz and against police brutality in the community. Two Caye Caulker Police Officers stand for murder charges.

San Pedro, Belize to Benefit from Study of At Risk Populations
The San Pedro neighborhood of San Mateo on Ambergris Caye, Belize has been identified as at risk by the Belize Red Cross Society. Flooding caused by tropical storms and hurricanes coupled with insufficient water and electric infrastructure has resulted in increased risk of fire and spread of disease. Belize Red Cross Director General, Lily Bowman suggested the area as the focus of a June 13-21, 2015 survey and research project, being made possible by Florida State University Emergency Management and Homeland Security Program (FSU EMHS). FSU EMHS, in partnership with the local Red Cross Society, is seeking to measure the water and sanitation situation of the San Mateo community and to assess storm vulnerabilities. The research project will include a site survey of the San Pedro neighborhood. The FSU team, which includes six researchers / graduate students plus faculty and staff, will travel June 13-21, 2015 to provide research survey technical assistance.

Wheel of Fortune Winners Cash in on Vacation at Ramon’s Village, San Pedro
This week, Ramon’s Village Resort, in San Pedro, Ambergris Caye, Belize welcomed Wheel of Fortune Grand Prize winner Dan Keyser and his wife Sharlene for a seven day/six night stay at the iconic beach resort. Ramon’s Village provided a Grand Prize for the famed Wheel of Fortune show, starring Pat Sajak and Vanna White, which included seven days/six nights accommodations, breakfast for two daily, a snorkel trip to Hol Chan and Shark Ray Alley and roundtrip airfare to Belize City with air transfers via Tropic Air to San Pedro. Dan and Sharlene have been busy exploring San Pedro, enjoying dining at Pineapples On The Beach, shopping at the Tiki Turtle Trading Company and of course snorkeling with Ramon’s Village Divers in the Hol Chan Marine Reserve. Ramon’s Village owners Richard & Gina Headrick, along with the legendary host of Ramon’s Mr. Ramon Nunez, welcomed the couple to San Pedro.

Misc Belizean Sourcesmzz

Peace March on Caye Caulker
Caye Caulker Residents peacefully march after one of their residents, 18 year old Hilbert Sots was murdered inside a police station less than an hour after he returned to the island. Two officers have been arrested and charged for Sots murder. The peace march on Wednesday, June 10th follows the initial unrest on the island that brought out anger against the police. The residents of Isla Carinosa hopefully found peace while making corrupt officials know they will always stand up and march for justice.

Paint N Splash
Next Thursday at Crazy Canucks! Join us for "Toucan Falls"

Dangriga By-election (Including the areas of Hope Creek and Sarawee)
A By-election for the Dangriga Electoral Division (including the areas of Hope Creek and Sarawee) will take place on Wednesday, 8th July 2015. Polls will open at 7:00 a.m. and close at 6:00 p.m. Nominations for persons wishing to contest the election will be received on Monday, 22nd June, 2015 between the hours of 10:00 a.m. and 4:00 p.m. at the Dangriga Town Hall, Dangriga Town. Nomination forms can be obtained from the Elections and Boundaries Registration Office in Dangriga Town or Mr. Colin Griffith, Returning Officer, at the Customs and Excise Department, Ceasar Ridge Road, Belize City; or from Ms. Sylvia Usher, Election Clerk, at the Immigration and Nationality Department, Dry Creek Street, Belmopan City.

June 2015 The Placencia Breeze
INSIDE JUNE 2015 Page 5: Meet Tomas Gongara, aka DJ Dzl; June Flag Designer Knows Marketing, Sales and Parties Page 5: Editorial: We're Jipping the Lobster at Lobsterfest Page 6: Opinion: Will it Take Another Hurricane to Revive the Arts Association? Page 8: Thinking Outside the Box Page 9: Kitty Fox, 1946-2015 Page 10: Lobster Menu Page 11: Prizes in Placencia Lobsterfest Grand Raffle Expected to Draw Many Players Page 11: Official LobsterFest T-shirts Featuring Watercolor Painting Go on Sale; Winning Artist Says She is Humbled Page 11: Lionfish are Reef Stalkers Page 12: Take Placencia Lobsterfest to Your Kitchen Page 16-17: Community Events Briefs Page 23: Few Hurricanes Expected This Year in Caribbean; Still, Peninsula Residents Urged to Be Prepared Page 25: Could you be Love and be Loved? Page 28: Memories of Kitty Fox from Friends Old and New

Guatemala's Navy vessel will sleep on the Reef
Because night has set in the work has been postponed and the ship is still stuck on the barrier reef at the rear of Middle Caye in the Glovers Reef atoll. The Belize Coastguard will continue working on Friday morning to assist the Guatemalan vessel and crew. The Guatemalans were heading to Mexico in the merchant shipping lane when it ran aground on the reef. The vessel was not in international waters but in Belize waters. Typically the vessel's captain would be charged for damage to the reef. No information has been released to determine if the Guatemalans will be charged.

Summer Solstice Event at Marco Gonzalez Maya Site
If you want a magical time to celebrate the start of Summer, please drive south and join us in the Main Plaza of the Marco Gonzalez Archaeological Reserve. Mr. Choc, 87 year old K'iche Maya from the south in Belize, will be here to give the blessing to the site and all who attend for a peaceful and prosperous year. Hopefully he'll pray for good weather before arriving!!! The site is in a jungle environment, complete with Gods creatures large and small.......large is the black striped iguana and small are the mosquitoes - which we'll have at bay for the event. Yucatec Maya Mr. Moh will prepare a delicious Pibil (bury the pig) and tamale dinner to purchase. Wash it down with a cold Belikin or soft drink while enjoying the music and the San Pedro Dance Co. preforming traditional Maya dance. This is a FUNDRAISER for our Non-Profit Organization. Park fees will apply to Non-Residents and, since it's a Sunday when Belizeans/Residents are not charged, we will appreciate a donation in any amount. Come a bit early so you can make the 12 minute walk into the Plaza and not be late!

BOLEDO DRAWING for Thursday, June 11, 2015: 05. FANTASY 5: 28 4 37 26 32 T

5 VEHICLES HANDED OVER TO THE SP POLICE FORMATION
Today, June 11, 2015, is a positive day for San Pedro Town, the business community and the San Pedro Police Formation. Mayor Daniel Guerrero, on behalf of the San Pedro Town Council, and Hon. Manuel Heredia Jr., Minister of Tourism, Culture & Civil Aviation, officially presented the San Pedro Police Formation with a fleet of vehicles which consisted of: 1 Mitsubishi Montero, 1 Land Rover, 1 Toyota Tacoma and 2 Carryall Turf Club Car Golf Carts. The San Pedro Town Council and Hon. Manuel Heredia Jr. are working hand in hand with the business community and the San Pedro Police Formation in acquiring these vehicles in their efforts to alleviate the crime situation in San Pedro Town. These vehicles are much needed by the San Pedro Police Formation and it will improve their effectiveness and efficiency during patrols. In his speech, Asst. Superintendent of Police (Officer Commanding Coastal Executive Unit) Mr. Henry Jemmott assured that these vehicles will be serviced regularly to ensure their durability and performance.

Cayo Wellness Symposium
The Belize Wellness Institute is having another great Wellness Symposium this Saturday. It'll be at the Maya Mountain Lodge, and will start at noon. They'll have over 20 businesses showing off their wellness related products.

Guatemalan Naval Ship
This Guatemalan Naval ship was heading to Mexico in the shipping channel. It ran aground on Wednesday night behind Middle Caye, which is located in the Glovers Reef Atoll. The Belize Coastguard had gone to rescue the soldiers from vessel. The coastguard remains on Middle Caye. They are working through the night to pull the vessel from the reef. The Coastguard will remain on Middle Caye for the night. The vessel was not in international waters but in Belize waters. Typically the vessel's captain would be charged for damage to the reef. No information has been released to determine if the Guatemalans will be charged.

WHEN CYCLING WAS KING: LET'S RECALL THESE CHAMPIONS!
Truly a nostalgic and epic cycling photo of the 1960's Belize cycling greats, and cycling memories that Belizeans of that era will never forget. Name these Belizean cycling champions?

WHEN WE WERE KINGS: A BELIZEAN SPRINTER NAME MORRIS!
When Belize's athletic history speak the names of Belize's legendary track athletes like Sonny Meighan, Colin Thurton, Harrison Pilgrim, Michael Hyde, Jude Lizama, and Father Henry (The Fly), the name Ernest Morris had not come up yet until he began to dominate Belize's Track & Field in the early 1970's as one of the most powerful sprinters that would come out of Belize of all times. Morris dominated the 100 and 200 meters with record time, and left an unbeatable record in both meets after his migration from Belize in the mid 1970's. A powerful sprinter like Ben Johnson out of the blocks, he had beaten some of the aforementioned sprinters that came before him, and became the new athlete on the block.

JOE WAGNER & WE'VE COME A LONG WAY!
It touched my soul to be writing this about one of Belize's most outstanding songwriters of all times, the legendary Joe Wagner, and the father of the legendary Belizean vocalist, Micheal Wagner. It burns like fire when you think about all the Belizean artists, sports athletes, and public figures who has given so much to Belize, and never even got a word of recognition for their honorable contribution. So, it will be short to say that Joe Wagner was remembered for the genius that hid within his struggle to make good music, that we have not seen one bit of today in today's generation of Belizean artists, particularly in songs like, We've Come A Long Way, that became one of Belize's most celebrated patriotic songs of all times. Your spirit lives on brother Joe. Always and forever.

AT AGE 14, FAITH MORRIS IS THE YOUNGEST BELIZEAN ATHLETE COMPETING IN THE 2015 CENTRAL AMERICAN & CARIBBEAN GAMES!
Belizean athelete, Faith Morris is the youngest Belizean athlete to compete in the 2015 Central American & Caribbean Games that will be kicking off this month. The young rising Belizean track athlete is the daughter of Belizean athletic coach, Ernest Morris, who had coached and conditioned many Belizean athletes over the years in preparation for the many athletic competitions that Belize had sent to Central American track meets over the years. Coach Morris also became one of Belize's most respected conditional coaches in Belize's football. Faith Morris will compete in the 100, 200 and 400 meters in this year's Central American & Caribbean Games. The picture here taken with Morris practicing on the hurdles, was taken in 2010 when Morris was only 11 years old. Belizean Legends sends a big shout out to Belize's youngest athlete in this year's Central American & Caribbean Games, Faith Morris.

Introduction to Birding and Bird Identification
Just finished one more "Introduction to Birding and Bird Identification" Course for Tour Guides and Tourism Establishments. This time at the magical Ian Anderson's Caves Branch Jungle Lodge. Too many good birds... it asks for a second course. However, the birds were only half my highlight. This is officially the funniest team I have worked with! Quite the mix of tough Jungle Master dudes and inspiring female guides. — with Ella Baron and Darrel Smith at Ian Anderson's Caves Branch Jungle Lodge.

Channel 7

Planning For Belize Victory Against DR
Belize beat the Dominican Republic "2-1" three hours ago in Santo Domingo. It was a thrilling game, and a tremendous win for Belize. 7News was there with the team - and we'll have their post-game reactions shortly. But they say they key to success is preparation, and that started this morning at the courtyard Marriot in Santo Domingo -when the team had its last strategy session -Jules Vasquez was allowed to sit in:.. Jules Vasquez reporting This morning at 9:00 the team gathered in a hotel conference room for an X's and O's session. In a very thorough 90-minute meeting, Assistant Coach Charlie Slusher outlined a detailed game plan - but more than just X's and 0's, he urged them to seize the moment: Charlie Slusher, Assistant Coach "Life could be hard on us, if we don't handle ourselves today." Slusher also went over what the coaching staff wanted on the defensive and offensive ends. He also warned them against bad habits.

The Jaguars Won!
At around 2 p.m. this afternoon in the Dominican Republic, the Belize National Team, the Jaguars, took to the football pitch to face off against that country's national team and after 90 minutes of play time, plus injury time, the Jaguars managed to defeat the DR Team 2 goals to 1. It's a huge victory, and Belize's two goals were scored by the country's premier striker, Deon McCauley, who put one behind the net early in the first half. The Dominican Republic manage to sneak one past Belize Goal Keeper Shane Orio, but late in the game, McCauley made a repeat performance gave Belize a 2 second goal. 7New Director Jules Vasquez is in the Dominican Republic right now, and right after the game, he got a reaction from the players about the big time performance they put on get this result. Here's what they had to say: Deon McCauley, Scored 2 Goals "The first goal was a penalty. Thank God that the ball rebound back in my path and I ended up putting the ball in the back of the net and the other goal late in the game that was wonderful. A wonderful pass from Evan Mariano on the right wing and I was able to displace the goal keeper and the defender and put the ball in open goal. That's just a striker's instinct in the last moment of any game. We have to try and still win the game no matter what score it is."

Guatemalan Vessel Grounded On Belize Reef
A Guatemalan Navy Gun Ship has run aground on the reef in Belize's southern waters. The report was received early this morning, and after a three hour boat ride to the site, the Coast Guard officers found this ship near Glover's Reef, where it had run aground. That's way inside Belizean territorial waters, and like the general public, and it has raised, eyebrows, alarms and the nation's collective blood pressure. After all, what were the Guatemalans doing in Belizean waters, and how did they end up on the reef? This morning, we spoke to National Security CEO George Lovell, who had received a briefing from the Coast Guard. Here's what he told us: George Lovell - CEO, Ministry of National Security "The Coast Guard was informed that there was a vessel on our reef off Glover's reef in the vicinity of Middle Caye. Immediately our Coast Guard officials centered sent out patrols into area to confirm the reports of this grounded vessel which was confirmed that there is a vessel a Guatemalan Coast Guard vessel with markings GC651 on that vessel. When we went to the ground we also observed that there was a second vessel that was in close proximity to where this vessel went aground and we were then concerned. we got in touch with Ministry of Foreign Affairs who in turn got in touch with our Guatemala counterparts and they informed us that the vessels where destined to go to La Isla Mujeres in Mexico. Our Coast Guard that were on the ground had an opportunity to speak to the crew of the Guatemalan Coast Guard vessel and they confirmed that yes they were heading to Mexico. They claimed that they had lost steering and that they drifted unto the reef."

Police Commissioner Comments On Caye Caulker Craziness
Last night, we showed you the two police officers who were criminally charged with murder for the death of Caye Caulker teenager Hilberto Sotz. We also spoke with Police Minister John Saldivar who spoke candidly about the culture of police brutality and abuse that led to such a heinous death. Well there is more to add tonight the Police Department has both publicly apologized Sotz's family for his death while in the Caye Caulker Police Station. A press release sent late yesterday from the Commissioner of Police. He informed that Leonard Nunez Police Constable # 628 and Hallet King, Police Constable # 819 were arrested and charged with murder, and that they have been arraigned and remanded. More than that, he added that they have been charged with displinary offences as well. There are now 3 others who have been immediately placed on interdiction, and they are WPC #1107 Bernadette Ramos, PC #1932 Edilberto Patt, Corporal Kirby Palma who was serving as the Officer in Charge of Caye Caulker Police. They were on duty at the time that Hilberto Sotz was detained, and it is suspected - but currently unproven - that they may have stood by and let the alleged abuse and torture to happen without question.

Petrocaribe's 10th Anniversary
Today was the 10th anniversary of the PetroCaribe agreement between the Government of Venezuela and the Government of Belize. Now, whenever you say that word the United Democratic Party is quick to remind how that funding has been the pillar of all the construction programs around the country. The PUP, on the other hand, is quick to condemn it for what they say is wanton and unnecessary spending of moneys in questionable programs. But the Government was buttoned all way up when they received the Venezuelan ship known as "Simon Bolivar" with a contingent of Venezuelan Navy Personnel. Officials from the Foreign Ministry, the National Security Ministry, the Belize Coast Guard, the Governor General, other Government Officials held a ceremony for the Venezuela officers and their Ambassador to Belize.

APBEL Receives The Venezuelans With A Friendly Gesture
From there, the Venezuelans went over to the Coney Drive Office of APBEL to greet with the Government officials in that company, who manage the PetroCaribe Finance which comes in every month. An informal social event was set up for the officers in commemoration of the 10 anniversary of the agreement. We stopped by and spoke with the accountant about the importance of such a gesture: Hernan Herrera - Accountant, APBEL "It's a great appreciation what these Venezuelans are doing, first of all for the Petrocaribe program. They came here for a couple days and their primary objective was to pass by the Caribbean and come by Belize and of course there are this solidarity between Belize and our company. They're just passing by in essence." Daniel Ortiz "Talk to us about what you all have done here for this event. What is its purpose?"

Venezuelan Ambassador Comments On Petro Spending
From there, the Venezuelan Navy hosted the press on their sprawling and luxurious vessel known as "Buque Escuela Simon Bolivar". We show you a bit of that ship, but that trip aboard afforded us an opportunity to speak with the Venezuelan Ambassador to Belize about the controversial positions when discussing PetroCaribe spending. Recently, Education Minister Patrick Faber came under fire for announcing that he took his Collet Constituents to Corozal for a family day of swimming and fun, a bill which the PetroCaribe Funds covered. We asked the Ambassador if his Government assesses that kind of spending as either good or bad. He told us that this kind of judgment goes against the principles of the program to question a sovereign nation: H.E Yoel Perez Marcano - Venezuelan Ambassador to Belize "Rules for the Petrocaribe agreement are very much different from those of the IMF and the World Bank. We don't supervise. We don't control. We don't decide for a sovereign country. We issue our opinions. We put forward recommendations. We proposed initiatives, but always in the framework of respect for the sovereignty and of the dignity of our sister countries which are part of Petrocaribe."

Dangriga Police Make Headway in Pattnet Murder
Dangriga police made a major break in the Ralston Pattnet murder case. Police found a 12 gauge gun along with 34 cartridges in the area. Apart from that major find, police have the main suspect in custody along with several others. Charges will be brought against at least one of the suspects. Police believe that this was a burglary turn murder. Apparently, the assailants were burglarizing the house he was maintaining for his American friend on Commerce Bight Road and Pattnet arrived at the same time. That's when Pattnet was shot and then burnt in his vehicle. It happened on Wednesday June 8that around 12:13 in the afternoon. Police responded to a fire on the Commerce Bight Road and that's when Pattnet's charred remains were found in the vehicle.

City Hall Distributes Land To It's Employees
Belize City Mayor Darrell Bradley has intentions to leave that office and become an elected area representative, but he's still looking after the interest of staffers at City Hall. He's been working on a land program for those employees for several months and today at the Holy Redeemer Parish Hall those new land owners found out today how the program will work. The Mayor explained the process: Darrell Bradley, Mayor - Belize City "This is something that we've been working on from last year and the City Council had acquired from the Ministry of Natural Resources 57 acres of land at mile 14 and we've been working through the process of getting lease then getting title then doing the subdivision and dealing with the clearing of the lots and so what we're doing today is that we're doing a random draw because again what we have identified is that it's something we want to do to reward long service. We started. We didn't know exactly how much parcels of land we we're going to get so we started with the employee who worked for the longest that's Miss Cynthia Nunez.

Aboard The Simon Bolivar
As we told you earlier, the Venezuela ship Buque Esquela Simon Bolivar is in Belizean waters for in commemoration of the 10th anniversary of the PetroCaribe agreement between Belize and Venezuela. That ship arrived with a contingent of Naval Officers from that country, and 7News as invited aboard to meet it's captain and crew as a part of today's celebration. Here's what the lead naval officer told us about his ship: Navy officer Gines Anaguren Santana - Captain, Simon Bolivar Vessel "We are much honored to represent the Republic of Venezuela and we for the first time are here in your country Belize. We have the honor and distinction of sailing through your waters for the first time and we look forward to also have more training for our personnel in your beautiful waters. Just a description of the ship: we have 4 ports in the upper section and then 2 upper ports in the second section to the back. I am very grateful to the government of Belize for opening this opportunity for us to be here with you and they have received with open arms and we are very grateful. We offer we our schedule, we left Venezuela on the 23rd May. Our first phase was a stop in Barbados, just before coming to Belize. Our next port of call will be Cuba, then Jamaica and then we go back to Venezuela."

Putting Belize's Kids First
The fledgling organization Belize Kids First held an award ceremony to honor students who are beneficiaries of their programs, and those who have been keeping up with the requirements to keep qualifying for it. They asked us to drop by to meet these persons and hear their stories of overcoming difficult trials, and so we did. Here's what the leaders of the organizers told us:

Prosthetics For The Differently Abled
Yesterday, an international organization was helping differently abled persons at Helpage with prosthetics to replace lost limbs, and we dropped by to see the good work that they were doing. Here's what they told us:

Justin Avila - The Football Super Fan
Belize won on the field today in Santo Domingo but they had help from a secret weapon. That's Justin Avila, a Belizean American businessman from Naples Florida. Justin isn't a big time name in sports sponsorship - but he is, without doubt, the biggest fan of the Belize Jaguars. Since 2006 he's been following the team on every major international outing; he flies from his home in Florida to meet them. But, he doesn't just cheer lead in the stands - he provides key logistics and support. For example, in Santo Domingo, he got there one day before the team, made sure the rooms they got were close together, put gallons of water in each player's room - and rented a car to basically be the team's run man. He gets nothing out of it, nothing form FIFA or the FFB. So why does he do it, well, as he explains he is just the Belize team's biggest fan... Jules Vasquez "You came to us all on your personal timing, on your personal expense. Why do you do it?" Justin Avila - Team Belize SUPERFAN "That's a good question. I do it because I think that there's one place that I was born and that's Belize and I realize that the team always needs help and I think that back home we didn't have the kind of help that we need. Is sounds like a controversy, but it's the honest to God truth - the team is always underfunded.

Keeping The Team Focused For Game 2 Against DR
Super striker Deon McAuley scored two goals - and we must now wait for the return match on Sunday at the FFB Stadium to see if Belize can make history by advancing to the third round of group play. But, a lot can go wrong between then and now when the team returns home to ecstatic fans. This evening in Santo Domingo Jules Vasquez asked the head of delegation, FFB Vice President Marlon Kuylen what they will do to make sure the team doesn't celebrate before Sunday's victory is secure: Jules Vasquez "You all are going back to Belize now. How do you feel about managing the team, because when you get home there will be elation and you can easily fall into that and '[boy] let us party'. How do you contain these guys and keep them focus for the real game that comes this Sunday." Marlon Kuylen - FFB VICE PRESIDENT "We don't even have to wait until we're home Jules. These guys want to celebrate now as it is. We are the Dominican Republic, but we are all focused. They know that the job isn't done. Yes, this is a huge victory but we have to go out there Sunday and at least draw or preferably win again. So when we get back home to Belize, in fact we're staying here at the hotel tonight. Nobody's going out tonight. When we get back to Belize, we'll book them into a hotel and we'll have them there until Sunday. After we play the match then we can celebrate but in the meantime everybody's focus on the job at hand."

GUATEMALAN NAVAL VESSEL GROUNDS ON REEF NEAR MIDDLE CAYE
CEO of National Security, Rt'd Colonel George Lovell, has confirmed to News 5 that about 1:30 am this morning, he was informed that a Guatemalan naval vessel with markings GC 671 was lodged on our reef in the vicinity of Glovers Reef off Middle Caye. He informed us that our coastguard officials are on the ground and a team is being put together to assess the damages and determine how best to remove the vessel. It is possible that Guatemalan tug boats may be used. Lovell says a claim will be lodged with the Guatemalan government if there are damages to the reef. He says that according to the Guatemalans, the naval vessel was headed up North towards Mexico when the ship lost steering and drifted from of their course into Belize's reef. This will be investigated by a Belizean team as well.

Channel 5

Guatemalan Coast Guard Vessel Runs Aground Near Glovers Reef
What is a Guatemalan naval gunboat, unauthorized at that, doing in Belizean waters? That was the million dollar question after reports surfaced early this morning. Coming on the heels of an [...]

What Was It Doing In Belizean Waters Anyway?
According to C.E.O. Lovell, Mexican officials have confirmed that the Guatemalan coast guard vessel was indeed on its way to the small island town.  To allay concerns that may arise [...]

Environmental Damages to be Assessed In Wake of Grounding
So here are the facts – a Guatemalan vessel is in Belizean waters, but preliminary investigations are that it is not a voluntary presence. Mike Rudon was on the site [...]

Belize Defeats DR to Take Game One of Home and Away Series
The Belize Jaguars did us proud today as they edged out the Dominican Republic’s national football team in a match aired exclusively on this station.  Super striker Deon McCauley continues [...]

2 Men Arrested for Murder of Fireman in Dangriga
As we told you on Wednesday night, Dangriga Police recovered the shotgun used and detained suspects in the latest homicide of that municipality. Well, we can confirm that two men [...]

Demonstration Following Arraignment of Caye Caulker Cops
Two policemen, Constables Hallet King and Leonard Nunez, were charged with the murder of eighteen-year-old Hilberto Sotz on Wednesday. And as we told you on Wednesday night, three others have [...]

Fate of Stake Bank Project to be Decided by Supreme Court
Prime Minister Dean Barrow had been trying to fight it off, meeting with multiple parties in Miami and Belize over the past few weeks. But the case of developer of [...]

Developer Michael Feinstein Comments on Stake Bank Project
For developer Michael Feinstein, it has been nothing but a series of headaches since the project began. The enabling legislation to start the project is delayed due to the lawsuit [...]

Honduran National Arraigned on Immigration Offenses
A Honduran man enjoyed a short stint of free passage in Belize before he was nabbed by immigration officials at the Novelo’s Terminal in Belize City this morning. Thirty-six-year-old Yony [...]

Teens Charged with Theft Given Option to Join Apprenticeship Program
Two teenage friends have been given the choice of attending and completing the apprenticeship program or spending time behind bars after one of them pleaded guilty to theft today. Eighteen-year-old [...]

Bye-election in Dangriga is Set for July Eighth
The date for the Dangriga bye-election has been set for Wednesday, July eighth.  Nomination day will held on Monday, June twenty-second for persons interested in contesting the election.  Those wishing [...]

Quality Infrastructure for Agriculture Sector…
A national dialogue on the importance of quality infrastructure to the agricultural sector was hosted in Belize today. Agriculture, as it stands, accounts for fourteen percent of the Gross Domestic [...]

…Where Does Belize Currently Stand?
With the assistance from the CARICOM Regional Organization for Standards and Quality, agricultural stakeholders from both the public and private sector gathered to devise a priority list to put in [...]

Petrocaribe Celebrates Tenth Anniversary in Belize
The tenth anniversary of the Petrocaribe initiative was commemorated today in Belize City with a brief ceremony held at the Memorial Park.  The oil alliance which is made up of [...]

How Prepared is NEMO this Hurricane Season?
The rains have started in earnest, and while the 2015 Hurricane Season is forecast as less than average, that does not mean that disaster will not strike. Are we prepared [...]

Healthy Living Looks at Hypertension Control
World Hypertension Day is celebrated annually on May seventeenth. This year, the Pan American Health Organization and the World Health Organization are urging that you pay more attention to blood [...]

CTV3

DEO Emphasizes On District Performance Rather Than Individual Performance
The Primary School Examinations results are in as we have reported before Orange Walk has performed the best across the country followed by Corozal. Schools are in the process of analyzing their performance as is the Orange Walk District Education Center. District Education Manager Carla Alvarez says that these results are subject to change as each school goes over the results. “We are still within the time where schools can make protests and queries and so on that is why we keep on saying that this is just the preliminary reports because it could change, in past years we had experienced where it has changed for some school in terms of the number of points that some students get and so on but the preliminary analysis shows that as usual we have topped the country in terms of performing best overall and also we have performed the best in all subjects, I know that some principals feel a bit discourage that we did not meet the national top 25 list but as I mention to them and I keep on emphasizing we need to focus as a district more on the school performance and stop focusing on individual students yes it is good that we have students that they have done well and we need to applaud them and we need to showcase that they have done well but we need to focus on school overall performance and that is what interest me more than anything.”

DEM Speaks On The Importance Of Literacy At Lower Level In Schools
As in other districts Math and English continue to be the more problematic subject areas for students sitting the Primary School Examinations in Orange Walk. This trend again presented itself as the district education center officials continue to analyze the preliminary results of the exams. District Education Manager Carla Alvarez says students continue to have difficulties scoring high grades in the problem solving section of the math exam. “Problem solving continues to be a problem and then it goes back to literacy, we need to ensure that our students know how to read, they might know how to solve the problem but if they don’t know how to read the question because it is wordy questions so if they can’t read the problem they can’t solve the problem and what a lot of schools continue to do is that they continue to read out the problems to the students and when the time comes for PSE the teacher is not there to read the question so we need to really move away from things like that and again it goes back to the fact that we need as a district to work on literacy on the reading and building that foundation from the very early and putting our bet teachers and most qualified teachers at the lower division; teaching them how to read, teaching them fluency and proper pronunciation and things like that.”

Belize National Team Victorious Over Dominican Republic
Belize’s National Football Team played their first game today for the second round of the World Cup Eliminations. They faced the team from Dominican Republic in Dominica Republic. And at the end of the whistle Team Jaguars did not let down its fans as they won the game two one. Both goals were scored by Belize’s striker Deon McCaulay. Here are the highlights of the match. On Sunday team Belize will once again go against Dominican Republic this time at the FFB Staduim in Belmopan. The game starts at 4:00pm.


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LOVE FM

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 […]

PlusTV

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...

The Guardian

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 NewsPJ

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 […]

Blogs

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.

International Sourcesizz

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.

Videos

  • 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

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