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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

Spectacular dance performances are lighting up the stage at International Costa Maya Festival Noche Tropical

Sargassum linked to dead fish washing onshore
Reports from residents of Northern Ambergris Caye are that dead fish are washing onshore at the Mata Grande area. According to these residents, hundreds of dead fish line the shores, making for a most unpleasant sight (and smell) for passersby. The Hol Chan Marine Reserve was notified and they have already identified the cause of the problem: Sargassum. According to Hol – Chan Marine Reserve manager, Miguel Alamilla, this phenomenon is due to eutrophication caused by the accumulation of the Sargasso seaweed. Sargassum is a brown microalga that floats freely on the sea and never attaches to the ocean floor. This type of seaweed provides refuge for migratory species and it is an essential habitat for some 120 species of fish and invertebrates. However, in the past months, massive quantities of Sargassum line the coast, affecting aquatic resources and even tourism. Investigations revealed that the great influx of Sargassum on the northern beaches of Ambergris Caye, especially at low tide, has dramatically led to a faster rate in its decomposition, giving way to the mass reproduction of bacteria, which in turn causes eutrophication. This activity causes negative environmental effects such as the death of aquatic animals. Alamilla believes that this is the cause of the dead fish appearing on the northern shoreline of the island. “Due to the accumulation of decomposing Sargassum and the increase of bacteria which consumes all the oxygen in the water, the living organisms such as fish perished due to the lack of oxygen in the water,” said Alamilla.

Work continues towards keeping Belize Medfly free
Belize has signed on to the Fruit Fly Control Cooperative Agreement aimed at managing the pests in order to protect crops in Belize and the United States of America. The agreement was signed on Tuesday, July 28th during the Meeting of the Multilateral Fruit Fly Commission held in Cancun, Mexico. This marks the second time a delegation from Belize has participated in such an event. Concerns regarding the invasive pest grew when on Tuesday, July 21st, Belize Agricultural Health Authority (BAHA) detected the Mediterranean fruit fly (or Medfly) in Southern Belize. The Medfly is considered the most devastating agricultural pest in the world, and originated in the Mediterranean area. Capable of causing extensive damage to a wide range of fruit crops, the Medfly has spread invasively to many parts of North, Central and South America. BAHA has identified possible outbreaks of Medfly in the Hopkins Village in the Stann Creek District and Sapodilla Cayes in the Toledo District. As a result, eradication activities such as fruit stripping, ground spraying, and delimitation trapping are underway in these areas. Belize is the only country in the region that is free of this pest and it is only when infested Medfly hosts, such as fruits and vegetables, are brought into Belize illegally that this pest is introduced. Adult Medfly lay eggs under the skins of fruit which serve as a distribution vessel.

Splash Summer Camp: teaching children valuable swimming skills
The third annual Splash Summer camp kicked off on Monday, August 3rd at the Boca del Rio Park in San Pedro Ambergris Caye. The program, which is open to children ages 6-15, teaches the basics of swimming. The camp will run for the entire month of August, on Mondays to Thursdays from 8:30AM to 11:30AM. All interested youth are invited to attend any of the camp days. According to camp organizer Kent Gabourel, the first day had a good turnout and the number of participants is expected to increase in the coming weeks. “As we get more of the swimming materials, we expect to have more children each day. Apart from keeping the children busy during their summer holiday, the camp will also make way for great swimmers as we will teach them the different skills of swimming,” said Gabourel. “Swimming is very healthy for the children since they work out their entire body, keeping them fit, and they learn skills to swim properly in any type of conditions or waters,” stated Gabourel.

Misc Belizean Sourcesmzz

Annual Tres Pescados Fly Fishing Tournament
The Annual Tres Pescados Fly Fishing Tournament is over. At the awards banquet held August 8th, organizer Wil Flack announced that through the tournament, $15,000BZ will be donated to Oceana in Belize to continue their work in the fight against Gill Net fishing. The tournament is donating $13,000 and 3rd place winners 'Size Matters' donated their $2,000 cash prize towards the cause as well. Congratulations to all involved!!

CTV3

15 Year Old Minor Charged For Samir's Murder
On Wednesday we told you about the murder of 23 year old Samir Vivas and yesterday at the K.H.M.H morgue a post-mortem examination was conducted on the body. According to the Pathologist, Vivas’ cause of death was certified as that of "Exsanguinations due to internal bleeding due to aorta vein injury due to stab wound to the abdomen." And in an update to that murder, police have arrested and charged 15 year old minor of San Antonio Village, Corozal, for the crime of murder. The minor was charged in the presence of his mother and a Justice of the Peace. Since he is a minor we are unable to release is name.

NTV Remains Focus On Their Journey Even With Advice Form BDF Commander
In an interview today with the media Brigadier General David Jones condemned the planned visit of the Northern Territorial Volunteers at the Sarstoon Island in southern Belize on August 16th. He says the trip can jeopardize the relationship between both countries something which we can’t afford at this time. Here is what he had to say. “If they would ask my advice I would advise them not to go. The reason for this is because the border between Belize and Guatemala and the country of Belize has a territorial dispute with Guatemala. They have professed that almost half of the country belongs to them at times, at times they profess that the entire country belongs to them and that area in particular near the Sarstoon they are contesting that the island has never been in dispute. Our version of what we know is that the Sarstoon Island belongs to Belize, they have a different view. It doesn’t make sense to have a confrontation over the issue, it is better for the foreign affairs to foreign affairs try and work out that problem.

BDF Commander Sepaks About Increase Military Presence In The North
Earlier in the newscast we told you about the helicopter found near the vicinity of the Belize/Mexico Border in the community of Blue Creek in the Orange Walk District. The first suspicion that arose was that of El Chapo’s Guzman presence in Belize. Today the media took the time to ask BDF Commander David Jones about Belize’s increased military presence in the North since the escape of Mexico’s infamous drug lord. “We have operations running there at the moment regular operations jointly with the BDF and the police I won’t disclose what sort of operations that we are doing because we can alert people that we operating in the area.”

One More Aircraft To Be Added To Military Fleet
While investigations continue into the mysterious helicopter found in Blue Creek in the Orange Walk District, the Belize Defense Force is looking forward to the addition of two military type helicopters to be added to their fleet of transport. Since the pull-out of the British Military Training unit in 2012, government has been going around cap in hand begging their partners in the US, the UK and Taiwan for assistance in getting a helicopter. And last year October, Government announced that they found a multi-million dollar deal for two helicopters. BDF Commander, David Jones says the helicopters from Taiwan are expected to arrive shortly. “The two helicopters that are expected to come from Taiwan. We expect them sometime the end of this year. Before the end of the year, we are going to have those two helicopters in the country. We had a team from Taiwan who came in to do a site visit. They looked at the facilities we got and they plan to bring the two helicopters in, assemble them and fly them around. And subsequently, we are doing concurrently at the moment, trying to get a different team to come in to train our pilots to fly that particular platform because our pilots have been trained to fly the Bell, which is similar as the helicopter they flew in, but there needs to be some sort of conversion for them to fly a different platform. So we expect those in by end of the year, and they will be operational at the end of the year.”

Orange Walk Police Discovers Abandoned Aircraft Near Blue Creek Village
Yesterday afternoon, Police officers made a mysterious finding in the San Felipe/Blue Creek area of the Orange Walk District. According to authorities, around midday while conducting anti-drug operations in Orange Walk Town, the Anti- Narcotics Unit received information of an aircraft circling San Felipe/ Blue creek area. As a result, the team proceeded to the area where about 3:00p.m they found a grey helicopter with dark tinted windows with registration numbers N607AZ on a feeder road in the Blue creek area. The aircraft was secured and a thorough search was conducted in the area. However, no one or anything else was found. Commander of the BDF, Brigadier General David Jones told the media today that they were called in to remove the helicopter "I won't be at liberty to give you much information on that Bell helicopter. That was a police operation. After the aircraft was probably captured I believe in the Blue Creek area, our Belize Defence Force pilots were requested to fly the helicopter into to our area."

F.O.B. Will Continue For Combating Illicit Activities
For months, stories concerning the construction of the Forward Operating Base near the mouth of the Sarstoon River have been dominating headlines and today discussions on the matter wages on in corporate and public domains. Viewers may recall that in May of this year the Belize Coast Guard travelled to the Sarstoon Island, Belize’s southernmost territorial point, to perform reconnaissance duty for the possibilities of establishing a base on the island. That trip resulted in tense confrontations between the Belize Coast Guard and the Guatemalan Navy. Since then, we had not heard anything about the forward operating base until a few weeks ago when the Minister of Foreign Affairs revealed that the Guatemalan authorities had issues with building the base inside sovereign Belizean territory. And so the project was put on hold until a discussion was held between Belize and Guatemala’s Foreign Ministers. Upon visiting Belize a few days ago Guatemala’s Foreign Minister Carlos Raul Morales mentioned that the reason that the Guatemalan Government opposed to the construction of the Coast Guard's Forward Operating Base was because an agreement was signed in the Confidence Building Measures that neither country would construct military bases at the border. That statement was refuted by four former P.U.P Foreign Ministers and even by Former Minister of Foreign Affairs Assad Shoman who was the lead negotiator when it comes to the confidence building measures. According to Shoman the three agreements signed between 1998 and 2008 which make up part of the signed Confidence Building Measures in no way prohibits Belize from building military bases at the border.

The Reporter

“We’re ready for office”, says VIP
With looming talks of early general elections, the political third party Vision Inspired by the People (VIP) is making strides to establish itself as a viable option for Belizean voters. The party has moved on establishing a national secretariat in the City of Belmopan, and is also looking into having an office operating in Belize City. It has also moved increasing accessibility by establishing its website http://vipbze.org/. The VIP also continues to dialogue with the business community and civil society on the need for policy reforms in the country. Acting chairman for the Belize district, Paco Smith, explained that the party’s efforts are to reassure the electorate of its stability. He added that the party has maintained strong activism, challenging the current administration on national issues. “We’re prepared to make the necessary changes once in office, to make sure Belize is on the right path”, Smith said. “We’re about making the substantive change needed to ensure this country’s development.”

Citizens can help reduce vector borne diseases says MOH
The Ministry of Health, in its latest vector control program report, cited citizen engagement as a major challenge in combating the spread of vector borne diseases. The Report, which details the statistics and interventions in reducing Dengue fever, Malaria, and Chikungunya, showed that while strides have been made in decreasing cases, there are still high incidents of people leaving items in their yards, such as drums, tires and bottles. These serve as breeding sites for mosquitoes. “We need a behaviour change”, said Kim Bautista, chief operator of the VCP. “What the vector control unit does is only about 20 percent of what is needed to prevent dengue.” According to the report, there has been a 16 percent reduction of dengue cases, with Belize City showing the highest reduction rate (46 percent). There have only been nine cases of malaria for this year, primarily in southern Belize, and only two positive cases of Chikungunya, which were not locally contracted.

Likelihood that most wanted drug fugitive is in Belize heightens amidst discovery of mystery chopper near northern border
The discovery of an abandoned helicopter around 3:00 p.m. on Wednesday by the Anti Drug Unit near the Belize-Mexico border has heightened the probability that wanted Mexican fugitive may be in Belize. The chopper was found in very good working condition, but its features and proximity to the border are what led authorities to believe that the man called “El Chapo” could be in Belize. The grey BELL-407 chopper, said to be worth around $4 million, has heavily tinted windows and has registration numbers N607AZ – not traceable to any country thus far. It was on a feeder road near Blue Creek Village, Orange Walk – a community located on the country’s northwestern side of the border – where contraband activity is rife. Inside the aircraft police discovered a number of blue plastic receptacles containing fuel. It was flown to the Belize Defense Force’s Price Barracks base and will join the fleet if two helicopters which Belize will receive from Taiwan, ironically to conduct border patrols.

The Belize Times

KHMH runs of out beds! – …Petrocaribe NOT Rolling Here
The nation’s only referral hospital is overwhelmed. It has begun to turn back patients because they have run out of beds."][/caption] Belize City, August 6, 2015 The Barrow Administration has had access to hundreds of millions of dollars through the Petrocaribe initiative. Some $400m will likely have been borrowed through the initiative by the end of this year. Of those millions, one would think the Government would have been investing heavily on the priorities for our people: education, health care and the creation of jobs. But such is not the case. The Petrocaribe funds, obtained and spent in flagrant contravention of the Finance and Audit (Reform) Act, have been used solely to advance the political agenda of the United Democratic Party in Government. Millions promised to keep the people of the Cayo North East area from rising up against the politician turned passport salesman, Elvin Penner; millions spent in Belize City to prop up the image of a man who uses his office as Mayor to lobby for a political constituency so he could call himself one of the ‘big boys’ in the UDP; millions more to keep UDP cronies happy through the awarding of million-dollar contracts for projects that could have waited as priorities are being neglected. And of course, millions more for buy-elections to gain political seats and power for an absolutely corrupt Government. Petrocaribe has not built a single classroom...

Lying and Deceitful Mayor
I have concluded that the Mayor of Belize City, Darrell Bradley, is a liar and a deceiver. On June 7, I went to his convention at Lopez Mateo Park and when he arrived I asked him if I can take photographs of the event and he agreed. I began to take shots of him as he greeted some of the constituents of Caribbean Shores. I was using a digital camera and because of my experience in taking photographs that would be used for political purposes I did not put a limit to the amount of photographs I would take. A woman by the name of Michelle Smith, whom I believe is a campaigner for the Mayor, asked me if I was taking photographs for the mayor and I said, yes. She then told me that she wanted me to take photographs of every move the mayor makes. At the end of the convention I checked the number of photographs I took and it amounted to 148. I told Ms. Smith that I will burn the photographs on a DVD and she told me that I can give the DVD to her. So the following day, June 8, after I burned the photographs I gave the DVD along with an invoice for $300.00 to Ms. Smith at her office at City Hall. She told me that she will pass them on to Armead, the Mayor’s Campaign Manager.

First Caribbean Bank Closes! – Over 60 Employees Face Termination
The worst kind of news hit over sixty employees of the First Caribbean International Bank with the announcement that the bank will be shutting down its doors for good once it completes the sale of its assets to another local bank. The deal between FCIB, which is owned by the Canadian Imperial Bank of Commerce (CIBC), and Heritage Bank of Belize has been in negotiations behind closed doors for several weeks, and it was not until the senior officials of international bank met with leaders of the Christian Workers Union on Monday, August 3rd, that the cat was let out of the bag. The Christian Worker’s Union was the first to sound the alarm, confirming reports that had been swirling for at least a month. The CWU had attempted to get answers when they wrote the bank on July 3rd, 2015, but they got none. This week, amidst great controversy triggered by the Union, the FCIB was forced to respond. They offered very little details on the reasons for their decision, and the Chief Executive Officer of CIBC First Caribbean’s Regional Operations, Rik Parkhill, only indicated in a press release that the bank had “conducted a strategic review of our business across the region and given the growth path we have identified we have made the difficult decision to sell our Belize operations”.

Minor detained for fatal stabbing Corozal – 23 yr. old victim would have celebrated his birthday on Monday
A 15 year old minor has turned himself into Police custody following an altercation between him and a 23 year old which ended with the elder youth being fatally stabbed. The minor could be facing murder charges as soon as the Police complete their investigations this week. Meanwhile, the family of Samir Vivas is in mourning as they prepare to put him to rest. The altercation occurred around 8:30pm on Tuesday, in front of the victim’s home in the Venezuelan site of town. According to the Vivas’ family, the minor’s sister was dating their loved one. He had gone to the minor’s home to visit her, but a quarrel ensued over a stolen bicycle. The quarrel turned into a fight and during the brawl, the minor reportedly took a sharp object and stabbed Vivas to the abdomen.

Big Up BelCare!
I beg my readers’ indulgence this week as I take a break from the rhetoric of politics to touch on a topic dear to my heart: sports. I agree with both Mandela and Baron de Coubertin that sports is integral to the development of character and it can serve to break down barriers. I have always felt that way too little attention is paid to sports in our education system and as a result, we are plagued by severe character flaws in our people. There is a direct correlation between the decline of sports in our nation and the increase of crimes in our streets. The second quotes above are by Pierre de Frédy, Baron de Coubertin who was a French pedagogue and historian and is known as the “Father of the modern day Olympics.” He was the primary force in the revival of the Olympic Games in 1896 which was nearly 1,500 years after the closing of the original games in Athens. As “le Renovateur” (the reviver) of the Olympic Games, Pierre de Coubertin influenced the entire world, bringing people of all nations, races, and cultures closer together in a common pursuit of excellence in sports. Born in 1863, Coubertin was himself active in many sports and regarded sports as playing an essential for the development of human character, and that through sportsmanship one develops one’s moral energy. He thus saw sport as an important part of the personal development of young people and regarded it as a core part of the general educational strategy for his home country France. Coubertin subscribed to the theory that “it is not whether you win or lose but how well you play the game”.

When a bank fails…
When the news broke that First Caribbean International Bank with its main branch on Albert Street would be closing its doors, our first concern was the sixty plus employees who were effectively being given notice that their services would be terminated. Their firing is pending the finalisation of a huge deal that will see the bank accounts of private shareholders who own Heritage Bank multiply. This is the nature of the beast known as capitalism in our neo-liberal globalized world. We must congratulate the Christian Worker’s Union and their ever-vigilant President Audrey Matura Shepherd who have stood with the employees and are committed to ensuring that they are not chanced in any way as the banks’ elites make sure they exit with every penny due to them, and more if possible. Such is also the nature of the beast. This situation is a tremendous devastation in many ways. We put it that while the closure of an entire bank is like an economic bomb detonating, which cannot be missed by the news headlines, on the ground level, hundreds of similar but smaller-in-scale economic disasters have been missed and even dismissed by many.

Belize Bank Bulldogs U-14 win “Puppy” Leslie basketball marathon
The Belize Bank U-14 Bulldogs won the “Puppy” Leslie invitational basketball marathon hosted by the Belize Bank Bulldogs Basketball Club at Bird Isle last Thursday to Sunday. The Bulldogs edged out Light of Peace 62-59, led by MVP Philip “P.J.” Parks with 22 points and 23 rebounds. Corey Popper added 12 points, and Kenyon Requena and Artest Ifield had 8 points apiece. Light of Peace’s Kerdell Tench had 20 points and 8 rebounds, while Jahmar Harris added 14 points and Dennis Sanchez and Tariq Pascacio had 7 points apiece. Coach Rupert Brown of the Belize Bank Bulldogs Club presented individual trophies to the champions and medals to the 2nd place winners, and a team trophy to the Bulldogs’ captain and coach. Philip “PJ” Parks won the Most Valuable Player award.

Rising Starz – No. 1 in women’s football playoffs
Undefeated Rising Starz is looking to secure the Cayo women’s football championship as they bombed the Real West Strikers: 4-0 in the Adventures Club football playoffs at the Norman Broaster Stadium on Sunday. Leonella Chuc scored the first 2 winning goals in the 18th and 20th minutes and Shayama Caliz added a 3rd goal in the 41st minute for a 3-0 lead at the half. Shayama scored a 4th goal in the 80th minute to seal the 4-0 win. The No. 4 seed Belmopan Lucky Strikers will take on the UB Jaguars in a consolation match for 3rd place on Sunday, August 9, before the Rising Starz and the Real West Strikers take the field for the rematch to decide the championship.

Deon McCauley is Superb! – Top Striker scores hat trick in friendly match in O.W.
Football fans in the north got to see Belize’s top goleador Deon McCauley work his magic with brilliance as he scored a hat-trick against a formidable Orange Walk selection. The local team hosted the national team for a practice friendly at the Louisiana Government School field in Orange Walk Town on Sunday. The Jaguars have less than a month to complete their preparation, but they have a very good chance of winning against Canada, who they take on in the 3rd round of the World Cup Russia 2018 qualifiers in Canada on September 4. Belize will host Canada at the FFB Stadium in Belmopan on September 8. Macaulay’s 1st goal came in the 13th minute when the Sugar City goalie misplayed the ball on a shot at goal by Gabriel Perez. Sugar City’s sweeper Andrew Allen brought down McCauley on the goal line, but too late, Deon had already tapped the loose ball into the net: 1-0.

UB makes small retreat in mandatory insurance fee scheme
The students of the University of Belize have won a small victory as the University of Belize appears to have made a small but significant retreat with its plan to impose a mandatory insurance policy on its students. Last week the incoming students were slapped with a last minute notice that they must buy insurance to complete their registration at the University. There was no consultation with students about this new scheme. The students riled up and expressed outrage on the social media. “This is rip off. Using coercion on poor students to in the name of insurance,” posted one student. “Ub to chancey.. they know we need our education so they the try find ways fi tek our money,” said another. “We need to protest against UB imposing insurance on all students. It should be optional,” said another post. In support of the students was the Belize Youth Movement, the outspoken and militant youth arm of the People’s United Party. BYM led by its President Alberto Vellos issued out a stern statement calling on the University to withdraw the mandatory policy. BYM indicated that it supports the idea of offering affordable insurance to students, but it should not be imposed on the students.

UB faculty & staff request salary increase – Minister of Education Patrick Faber tells them to join waiting list
Minister of Education Patrick Faber attempted to school the faculty and staff of the University of Belize in response to their request for a salary increase. Faber answered that the University faculty and staff will have to join the waiting line that includes others such as the employees of the Karl Heusner Memorial Hospital and Belize Electricity Limited who have also requested a pay raise, but are facing resistance by the Government. This resistance has forced the BEL Union members to protest for three days in Belize City last week, while KHMH workers took serious action by cancelling all services except emergencies. It appears UB faculty and staff will have to borrow a page from the books of BEL and KHMH employees if they want any form of results.

10 Yr. Old Robbed by Machete-Wielding Men
A 10 year old male student of Concepcion Village in the Corozal District is traumatized after he was violently assaulted and robbed by two machete-armed men. The child reported to the Police that he was in the area known as Baeza Layout with his sister around midday on Tuesday, August 4th, when they were approached by two male persons who he did not know. The men wore masks, said the child, and they demanded money from them. The child said that one of the men that was armed with a machete, lashed him on his left arm and back of his head, forcing him and his sister to hand over $80 and his LG Touch cellular phone valued at $280.

2 youths shot in Jane Usher “Gaza” area
Two young men are hospitalised after sustaining gunshot injuries during separate shootings in the Jane Usher Boulevard area just before 10am on Wednesday morning. 21 year old Raheem Arnold was shot in the pelvic area by an armed man who confronted him on the street side. Witnesses say they heard the two exchanging words followed by a chase through the bushes and the sound of gunshots. Arnold was found injured in the bushes and rushed to the hospital where he is being treated. Shortly after, gunshots rang out again as 18-year-old Shemar Moore was shot as he reportedly walked to his grandmother’s house. He was shot to right arm, left arm pit, left foot, and to the left upper leg. Police say they are looking for two suspects in relation to these shootings.

Guatemala YET to pay for gunboat’s damage to Belize’s reef – “What do you think we should do if they don’t pay?” clueless Sedi Elrington asks Channel 5 reporter
All indications are that Foreign Minister Sedi Elrington has no clue how he will get the Government of Guatemala to pay for the damages its gunboat made to Belize’s reef on Glover’s Reef in June of this year. The damage to the reef has been estimated by Government officials at a measly $46,000. According to Elrington and his second in command on Guatemalan aggression matters, Colonel (Retired) George Lovell, they sent a diplomatic note to Guatemala informing them of the damage assessment and “inviting” them to pay for it. But it seems this note got lost in the mail, along every other official protest against the continuous and intensifying acts of hostility by Guatemala. Neither Elrington nor Lovell has received a response from Guatemala.

Atlantic Bank loses link to international banks – GOB/Central Bank’s economic “gurus” silent as banks suffer
Yet another bank in Belize has suffered a heavy price as a result of the Barrow Administration’s failure to comply with international accountability and transparency standards. Atlantic Bank announced late last week that its “correspondent bank account with Bank of America will be closed as of Friday July 31, 2015”. As a result, its banking services such as Wire Transfers, U.S. Bank Drafts and Foreign Currency have been adversely affected. In fact, the bank announced to its customers that Thursday July 30th was the last day for wire transfers through its Bank of America account. “…we will not be able to facilitate any foreign currency wire transfers or USD Bank Drafts until further notice,” declared the bank in a notice issued to customers. Atlantic Bank has had an arrangement with Bank of America for correspondent banking. This has allowed customers to make financial transactions to the United States and other parts of the world through a main U.S. bank. U.S. banks, like the Bank of America, are at the center of the global financial system and through the correspondent banking arrangement Belize’s banks are strategically linked to them.

Of this and that…
News in Belize is Bad News. America has investigative journalism. They buss ting and expose. They inform. Big Up Channel 5 at least they have healthy living. Jules, he… Channel 7 does not try to teach. They do not inform. Channel 7 is about propaganda. It is not about information. It is not about education. It teaches you nothing. All bad news. Evening news is a big tool. Missed opportunity. It teaches a nation. Belize is educated at 6:30. It is a lost opportunity. Evan X is right. Politicians should stay out of the news business. Listen to him Jules. Missionary Position A child dies. This is very sad. He drowns on a trip. A trip to Blue Creek Cave. That is in Toledo. He was with missionaries. This is sad. But geez. That place is so pretty.

WOMAN IN THE HOUSE – AMAZING GLORIA
I was in a bit of shock several evenings ago when I received a text message from Emy Gilharry Ramirez, informing family and friends that Gloria Gilharry had passed away in Arizona, USA a few days before, and that the memorial service for her would be held on Friday, July 31 in Corozal Town. For many years I have been close friends with the Gilharry sisters, expecially Grace (Graciela), Gloria and Emy. There are certain persons in life who always hold a very special place in our consciousness and memory. Grace is one such person. For almost two years when I was a law student in Jamaica, I stayed with Grace and Maurice Saunders and their family. Their kindness and generosity towards me when I was a struggling university student is something I will never forget. Through Grace, I became good friends with Gloria and Emy, and I knew their parents, Allan and Andrea Gilharry, quite well and held them in the greatest of respect while they were alive.

SENATOR LISA SHOMAN’S OPEN LETTER TO BTL
Dear Sirs and Mesdames, RE : DIGICELL ADVERTISING CAMPAIGN I write to you on the mentioned subject in several capacities -as a former Chairman of Belize Telecommunications Limited, a Senator, a Belizean, and a woman. As a taxpayer, I would also add the capacity of shareholder. DigiCell has, for some time now been conducting a social media advertising campaign on Facebook and Instagram which carries advertisement of the services offered by your company which are offensive to women, and lately, degrading and in one particular case, suggests that violence/abusive restraint are not only acceptable, but laudable and uses the hash tag ‪#‎tryduct tape. The matter first came to my attention with the “ Free WiFi Pan Di Road” campaign, when two images were used to sell your product line. One was a close-up of a female bottom, clad in jeans. The juxtaposition was clear to most. Innuendo about “free wifey” escaped the notice of no one, and the egregious use of the body part to sell “wifi pan di road” was unmistakable.

Breaking Belize NewsPJ

BDF asserts right to work in Sarstoon area
While refraining from any suggestion of misleading statements, Commander of the Belize Defence Force Brigadier General David Jones refuted the position of Guatemalan foreign minister Carlos Morales as presented a few weeks ago that Belize nor Guatemala would increase the number of military bases at the border, per […]

Henry Cunningham wants back gun from GSU – “public safety” a concern, says boss
In December of 2014 we reported on raids conducted by the Gang Suppression Unit (GSU) in the Conch Shell Bay area of Belize City. In one of them, police are accused of breaking into the home of farmer and retiree Henry Cunningham, 82, and retrieving his shotgun and […]

“Tear gas” Grenade found in Eastern Division headquarter
A CS gas grenade was apparently found on the third floor of the Racoon Street Police Station, which serves as official headquarters for Eastern Division (South) and previously for all of Eastern Division in Belize City, on Friday evening. The building had to be evacuated around 3:30 after […]

Immigration “unable” to renew Belize passport for naturalized citizen
Ruth Castillo, a naturalized Belizean originally from Honduras, has for the past year been unable to get the Immigration Department to renew her expired Belizean passport because she does not have a verified birth or naturalization certificate. The 46 year old told Amandala in this week’s issue that she has […]

Blogs

Early Mornings & Late Nights Meet: Costa Maya Festival & Tres Pescados Flyfishing Slam On Ambergris Caye
San Pedro town is absolutely packed. Every golf cart is rented out…and kids are hanging off every balcony in town. The International Costa Maya Festival is in town. The history of the event is pretty interesting, totally worth a look at the pictures and write up in AmbergrisCaye.com. (Awesome body builder contest!) According to Special Correspondent Fin K, the event used to be both day and night. Food from all the Central American countries…ending with a giant parade through town. Here are some pictures I took last night of the set-up of the stage…and the Honduran band, El Chevo (although it said El Chebo on the big screens) practicing for Saturday night. On the total time flip-side, Tres Pescados Fly is holding their 7th Annual Slam Tournament. I say flip-side because while Costa Maya revelers are exiting the clubs, these anglers are headed out to hook tarpon, permit and bonefish…

International Sourcesizz

How to Talk to Dolphins: An Interview with Susan Casey
In bestselling author Susan Casey’s third book, she explores the intimate relationship between humans and dolphins. One of the stories that inspired bestselling author Susan Casey’s new book on the intricate world of dolphins, Voices of the Earth, is almost too beautiful to be believed. A biologist named Maddalena Bearzi was studying a group of dolphins off the coast of Los Angeles when she noticed something strange. The “pod” (group of dolphins) had just landed upon a herd of sardines. They were about to start feeding—something that usually transfixes the whole group—when one, unexpectedly, darted off. In moments, the rest followed, swimming full speed out to sea. When she reached them, three miles offshore, the pod had a formed a circle—in the middle of it, a girl’s floating body. Very near death, the girl had a plastic bag with her identification and a suicide note wrapped around her neck. With the dolphins help, she was saved. “I still think about and dream about that cold day,” Bearzi wrote of the sighting. “And that tiny, pale girl lost in the ocean and found again for some inexplicable reason, by us, by the dolphins.” Our inexplicably intimate relationship and longtime fascination with dolphins provides a backdrop for Casey’s third book. From bizarre 1950s scientists to a community of dolphin worshippers, it’s an eye-opening look at the world below the sea.

BELIZE, UM LUGAR PARADISÍACO
A partir de 8 de dezembro, a Copa Airlines oferecerá dois voos semanais para Belize, desde o Hub de Las Americas, na cidade do Panamá. Com isso, o brasileiro terá mais um destino de viagem na América Central. Belize é mais um lugar paradisíaco. Mais de 40% do país foi transformado em parques e reservas naturais com águas cristalinas, cavernas e fauna exuberante. Possui um ecossistema marinho privilegiado composto por atóis, manguezais, bancos de areia e a segunda maior barreira de corais do mundo, o que faz do lugar um destino perfeito para mergulho. Com uma costa com mais de 500 quilômetros, é repleta de atóis e os famosos “Blue Holes”. Os principais pontos de mergulho são as ilhas Turneffe, o Lighthouse Reef, o Atol de Glover e Ambergris Caye. Belize é muito bem servido de “Liveaboards” e resorts especializados em mergulho. A melhor época para o mergulho é de abril a junho.

A threat smelling to high heaven — Obama whiffs it
It was uncanny, but reflective of thoughtful and caring minds, that just days before President Barack Obama made his far-reaching statement about climate change on August 3, Caribbean poet, author and intellectual, Ian McDonald, made a point to me that was echoed by the US president. In responding to a commentary I wrote on July 23, entitled 'Climate change: Time for talking is over', McDonald wrote: "It astonishes me that world so-called leaders continually talk of ISIS (now but not long ago it was al-Qaeda, and tomorrow it will be some other threat du jour) as an 'existential threat' when a real existential threat like climate change is right under their noses smelling to high heaven." Ten days later, in his remarks announcing a "clean power plan" for the United States, President Obama declared: "I am convinced that no challenge poses a greater threat to our future and future generations than a changing climate." It was a bold and courageous step for an American president to proclaim that climate change is a threat, let alone the greatest threat to the future of Americans and mankind.

International fare deals are taking flight
Each week, airfares seem to be going down, down, down. Just last week, we saw nonstop flights from Dallas to Chicago, New York City and Boston for as low as $81 round trip. I don’t think the airlines ever imagined fares this low. If I went to American’s corporate office in August 2014 and told them that in a year they would offer these fares, they would have laughed me out of there. We recently saw a sale from Dallas on United for $225 to Belize, $259 to San Jose, Costa Rica, and $329 to Liberia, Costa Rica. The fares to Liberia are normally in the $700 to $900 range, so it is a dramatic drop. When looking for deals out of Dallas, I’d look at Belize, San Jose, Liberia, Los Cabos, Puerto Vallarta, Cancún, Mexico City and Montego Bay for travel after Oct. 15. The prices we are seeing on some of these routes are very similar to what we are seeing out of Houston on Southwest and United.

Ask an expert: Safety and travel in Central America
Q. I'm hoping to tour Mexico, Belize and Guatemala in early 2016 and wondered what kind of vaccinations will be necessary. Also, what are the fastest/cheapest ways to get between Cancun and Mexico City? A. Rabies, malaria, hepatitis and tetanus are worth enquiring about. Yellow fever is not necessary in Central America. Guatemala is such an inspirational part of the world, and stunning! Spend your time in Antigua City, not Guatemala City. Visit Lake Atitlan, climb a volcano and conquer some Mayan ruins. If you are susceptible to bites, there may be some concern if you are going into forestry areas like Tikal, and a good dose of DEET will be a must-pack. A bus ride between Mexico City and Cancun will take a painstaking 24 hours with brief stops. Or take a direct flight of approximately two hours. Economy airlines are Aeromexico and Volaris. The other option would be to stop overnight at places along the way and break the trip up, letting you experience the real local and cultural Mexico. Pop into your House of Travel for further information and prices.

Videos

  • Grand Caribe - San Pedro, Belize 2015, 10min.

  • Belize Sleeping Nurse Shark, 3min. Just what it says July 2015

  • Scuba Diving with Sharks, Moray eels, & other marine life in Belize, 9min. Swim with Nurse sharks, a Moray eel and witness the beauty of the worlds second largest coral reef along the coast of Ambergris Caye, Belize.

  • Leaf Cutter Ants in Belize, 1min.