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#508901 - 11/06/15 05:59 AM Today's Belize News: November 6, 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

Exploring Southern Belize
Belize’s southern districts are on the rise and as of recent have been growing in popularity for both adventurers and tranquility seekers. While the northern cayes have been in the limelight with popular destinations such as Ambergris Caye and Caye Caulker, Southern Belize’s charm attracts a host of travelers that can appreciate the modest tranquility of these quaint towns and villages that make up the southern districts. With an expanse of rich jungles, rain forest and rolling Maya Mountains as far as the eye can see in the Toledo district and more mountains with access to the dancing waters of the Caribbean Sea in Staan Creek, there’s dozens of reason to explore the south! Popular villages such as Hopkins and Placencia offer vast opportunities to experience the rich afrocentric Garifuna culture that is predominantly based in the south.Have a go at drumming, dance and local arts at cultural centers based in Hopkins, and nearby communities.

San Pedro celebrates Dia de los Muertos
On Monday, November 2nd, The San Pedro House of Culture (SPHC) once again brought tradition to San Pedro Town. Residents celebrated their dearly departed in the annual ‘Dia de los Muertos’ celebration (Day of the Dead). The tradition is well celebrated in the Mestizo, Maya and Garifuna cultures and is usually observed over two days, November 1st and 2nd. The event was done under the auspices of the National Institute of Culture and History and included the collaboration of several volunteers. On this occasion, the festivities took place at the SPHC building where a large crowd gathered to start the celebration. After the reading of some rosaries, Director of the SPHC Mito Paz welcomed everyone and explained the importance of the day to those in attendance. “El Dia de los Finados is a tradition of our people. A tradition that our ancestors brought from Mexico when they sought refuge in Northern Belize, during the Caste War. But the tradition is more than what we know of it today. For example, the Aztecs thought their deceased would come every year without fail during this time to celebrate with them, so did the Maya and so do we today,” said Paz. He reiterated that on this special day, everyone should remember their loved ones and pay tribute to their deceased friends and family members.

Breast Cancer awareness fair held in San Pedro
October is usually observed as the month for Breast Cancer Awareness and there were various activities held countrywide. On Ambergris Caye, the San Pedro Town Council and the Dr. Otto Rodriguez San Pedro Polyclinic II held a Breast Cancer Awareness Preventative Day on Saturday, October 31st. In addition, a dollar drive was also organized on Coconut Drive, which generated a whopping $5,000.06 dollars. All proceeds were donated to the San Pedro Cancer Society. The event had a good turnout, with a total of 15 Pap Smears and 19 Breast Examinations conducted. According to the Polyclinic Public Health Nurse, Lezel Cayetano, early detection saves lives and every woman should take advantage of this free service available at the polyclinic.

Islanders run for a worthy cause
Members of the community gathered at SHPS from as early as 6:30AM to register for the race. Each person was given a number and placed in one of four categories. The categories included Junior Male, Junior Female, Senior Male and Senior Female, with the junior category being for persons between the ages of 12 to 16 and the senior category being for persons 17 and older. The race ended at the SPHS auditorium where the winners were announced immediately after. In the junior male category first place went to Jahson Wrigth who won $250 courtesy of Mahogany Bay Village, second place went to Ernest Arzu who won a snorkeling trip for two courtesy of Ramon’s Dive Shop, while third place went to Tyreke Arzu who won a $100 gift certificate to Blue Water Grill. Taking first place in the junior female category was Rebecca Barkhouse who won $250 courtesy of Mahogany Bay Village, while second place went to Britney Chan who won a sailing and snorkeling trip for two courtesy of Ramon’s Dive Shop and third place went to Eleida Coc, who won a $100 gift basket courtesy of Belize Chocolate Company.

Ambergris Today

The Building of the San Pedro Lion’s Clinic
The idea was the brainchild of the club membership under the chairmanship of its first three presidents, Lion Pete Salazar, Lion Wilfrido Alamilla, and Lion Betito Marin. The first clinic built by the government of Belize at the time had just been destroyed in a large fire and San Pedro was without, thus the idea and important need of a clinic. This project took about two years to be completed and it is because the lions Club not only had to raise and identify the money but also because the members did the actual building. Every day after work Lions assembled at the site to chip rocks and literally make gravel, mixed cement, and did all the masonry, carpentry, cabinet work, painting, and electricity with the expertise of the Lions and friends of the community. In the year 1977 on the occasion of the annual convention, the San Pedro Community Clinic was inaugurated. Dr. Otto Rodriguez was hired as the first resident doctor for San Pedro assisted by registered Nurse Norma Burns. It was a proud moment for the community of San Pedro and more so for the Lions Club for completing its very first very large project of service. Lions International made mention of it in its monthly publication, The Lions Magazine. Worthy of mentioning is that the regular services of the clinic have been enhanced throughout the years with the visit of foreign dentists, eye specialists, pediatricians, heart specialists and therapists.

Misc Belizean Sourcesmzz


Saturday Night is Roots Reggae at the Sports Bar on Caye Caulker
with Julian Melodyman Escobar from 6 - 9 pm Come listen and dance to the beats of Roots reggae -- Belizan Style Check out Melodyman's website for more performance dates and original soundtracks

Belize PM wins record third consecutive term
The ruling party in Belize, the United Democratic Party (UDP), led by Prime Minister Dean Barrow, won a record third term in general elections held on Wednesday. In preliminary results, the UDP won 21 of the country's 31 constituencies while the main opposition People's United Party (PUP) had won 10. The newly formed Belize Progressive Party also fielded candidates, none of whom were successful at the polls. Barrow called the general elections in late September, more than a year ahead of schedule, amid signs his political opponents were regrouping and fears that generous Venezuelan aid crucial to his budget may be at risk. Elections in Belize are normally held every five years but the prime minister has the constitutional power to dissolve parliament and call early elections. This was the fourth time this had happened in Belize’s history. On first two occasions both the PUP and the UDP lost after calling early elections. In 2012, the UDP escaped by a narrow margin. This is the first time that a political party in Belize has called early elections and won by a large margin.

Invest Belize Vol 4
Beltraide and McNab Publishing had the release party for volume 4 of Invest Belize Magazine. It looks great, and it's already online. Well done, Beltraide, McNab, and Leonardo! "It is with great enthusiasm that ‪Beltraide‬ and ‪McNab Publishing‬ announce the launch of Invest Belize Magazine Vol 4, which took place today at Best Western Biltmore Belize. This issue focuses on Tourism Investment and will soon be available online for anyone to view and download. Printed copies will also be shipped countrywide as well as internationally. Attached are some preview photos by Leonardo Melendez Photography. MORE TO COME SOON!!!"

Invest Belize Volume 4
"It is with great enthusiasm that ‪Beltraide‬ and ‪McNab Publishing‬ announce the launch of Invest Belize Magazine Vol 4, which took place today at Best Western Biltmore Belize. This issue focuses on Tourism Investment and will soon be available online for anyone to view and download. Printed copies will also be shipped countrywide as well as internationally. Attached are some preview photos by Leonardo Melendez Photography. MORE TO COME SOON!!!"

International Archaeology Day - Celebrating
As we near the one year anniversary of the opening of San Pedro's modest House of Culture building, I want to thank Mito and Brenda and the Committee for almost a full year of exhibits and events that truly enrich our community. Congratulations on another well done event. It was so good to see so many school children being able to learn first hand about the amazing Mayan culture. I learned alot too!!!

2nd Annual Caye Caulker BTIA Tourism Training Week
You can sign up with any CCBTIA member: Stacy Badillo, Femellie Reyes, Maria Vega, Akheil Badillo or Shary Trejo.

Specialized Manatee Tour Guide Training
November 10th. Registration is $25. You can sign up with any CCBTIA member: Stacy Badillo, Femellie Reyes, Maria Vega, Akheil Badillo or Shary Trejo.

Hon. Dean Barrow Sworn In as Prime Minister of Belize
The Hon. Dean Oliver Barrow was today sworn in as the Prime Minister of Belize by the Governor-General His Excellency Sir Colville Young. The brief ceremony was held at the Belize House in Belmopan. The Prime Minister was accompanied by his wife, children, other relatives and supporters. This is Hon. Barrow’s third consecutive term in office and the third time serving as Prime Minister. The other elected representatives are expected to be appointed and sworn-in next week.

Miss Garifuna Belize Cultural Pageant
The National Garifuna Council Belmopan Branch will be hosting this year's Miss Garifuna Belize Cultural Pageant at the Belmopan Civic Center on November 7th, 2015 at 7pm.

Hon. Dean Oliver Barrow was today sworn in as the Prime Minister of Belize
The Hon. Dean Oliver Barrow was today sworn in as the Prime Minister of Belize by the Governor-General His Excellency Sir Colville Young. The brief ceremony was held at the Belize House in Belmopan. The Prime Minister was accompanied by his wife, children, other relatives and supporters. This is Hon. Barrow’s third consecutive term in office and the third time serving as Prime Minister. The other elected representatives are expected to be appointed and sworn-in next week.

San Pedro Town Council offices closed Friday
The San Pedro Town Council hereby advises the general public that its offices will be closed on Friday, November 6, 2015 and will resume to regular working hours on Monday, November 9, 2015. We apologize in advance for any inconveniences caused.

From 1984 to 2015, it appears that Dean Oliver Barrow was destined to become the leader he had professed to be. An astute lawyer, and brilliant orator, Barrow captured the hearts of many Belizeans of the 1980's with his flamboyant style, and sharp and eloquent rhetoric for the political stage. He was nothing to play with across from the microphone of any journalist who dares to put a challenge to his claim, and became the political guru behind the United Democratic Party (UDP) that catapulted him to stardom in Belize's political arena. A sharp intellect relative to many of his contemporaries in the Caribbean, Dean Barrow has won three consecutive general elections in Belize despite all the odds of carrying on his back, an almost damaged cabinet racked by one scandal after the next throughout his two terms in office as Prime Minister.

Archaeology in the Community: Belize 2015
Dr. Jones and our intern, Solai Sanchez, just returned to D.C. after spending two weeks in sunny Belize. Archaeology in the Community collaborated with the U.S. Embassy of Belize and the Institute of Archaeology (NICH) Belize to bring students throughout the country an interactive archaeology lesson. They traveled to Belmopan, San Ignacio, Caye Caulker, and Punta Gorda to bring over 150 students their hands on archaeology class. Not only did they have students participate in a mock dig, but they also had them create their own unique cultural heritage from their own imagination and all the educators were so happy to see how creative they got!

Garifuna Awareness Day
The San Pedro House of Culture kindly invites you to our Garifuna Awareness Day on Friday, November 13, 2015. We invite you to taste authentic Garifuna cuisine, learn about the Garifuna culture and enjoy cultural (Jankunu) presentations beginning at 11 am at the San Pedro House of Culture. Join us in this cultural experience as we celebrate this unique Garifuna cultural heritage.

Channel 7

Prime Minister Barrow Sworn In For History 3rd Term
The UDP won a comfortable 19 to 11 victory in yesterday's general election - with one area, Stann Creek west still being recounted at this hour. That gives THE UDP party a historic third successive term - and it has left the opposition PUP in disarray, again losing ground in the number of seats held, when all political logic dictates, they should be gaining. And so, with that Dean Barrow was sworn in for a third term this afternoon at Belize House in Belmopan. Here's the oath of office as administered by the Governor General:.. Hon. Dean Barrow, Prime Minister "I Dean Oliver Barrow, do swear that I will bear true faith and allegiance to Belize and will uphold the constitution and the law and that I will conscientiously, impartially and to the best of my ability discharge my duties as the Prime Minister of Belize and do right to all manner of people without fear, favor affection or ill will so help me God." Barrow becomes the first three-term Prime Minister in Belize's history.

Francis Fonseca Steps Down As PUP Party Leader
But tonight, the real hot news is not about Dean Barrow's third term; it's about PUP Leader Francis Fonseca's abrupt and unexpected announcement that he is stepping down as party leader. Fonseca made the announcement at an understated press briefing this afternoon in Belize City. His stark announcement stunned observers at party headquarters:... Hon. Francis Fonseca, Stepping Down "Ladies and gentlemen it has been my distinct honor and privilege to lead the People's United Party over the past 4 years. I think given the results of yesterday's elections, it is right and appropriate that I stand down as the leader of the People's United Party. I certainly want to thank the wonderful people of Freetown for their unwavering support for 4 consecutive general elections. I had been and continue to be humbled by their love and support. I am a very young man as Jules Vasquez knows, but this has been my last election. I am still in my 40s, but I think I will have to find another way to contribute to the development of Belize, Jules. I will of course serve out term working for the people of Freetown. But I do not intend to seek re-election." And so, just like that, Fonseca who just won the Freetown division by his largest margin yet and for a fourth term - is walking away from PUP leadership 4 years after he took up the post, and electoral politics 12 years after he won his first election. He says that it wasn't a spontaneous decision - he decided much before the election that if the PUP lost he would step aside.

Fonseca Will Try To Oversee An Orderly Transition
And that "difficult time in its history" refers to the PUP's historic losing streak. The party has not won a major election since 2003 - and has lost 9 major national elections in a row since then. After coming close in 2012 when the party came within 61 votes of forming the government, the PUP has lost ground, going from 14 seats in the House of Representatives, to 12, and now to 11. So, Belize's grand old party is at a fragile juncture - and Fonseca's decision to step down unleashes all sorts of volatile energies - as various aspirants will jostle for leadership. It could further fracture an already divided party and Fonseca told the press today that he will try and manage an orderly transition:... Hon. Francis Fonseca "I certainly want to make sure that there is an orderly and smooth transition. So I will advise the chairman of the party to ensure that we put in place a structure to ensure that that smooth transition takes place over the next few weeks. Ultimately that process will end with the holding of a special convention at which there is the election of the new leader of the People's United Party."

PM Barrow Thanks The Electorate
And while the PUP is going through more upheaval - which has been fairly continuous in that party since 2004 - the UDP is at its greatest strength in its 40 year history. Today at a press briefing the Prime Minister spoke expressed his thanks to the electorate who gave the UDP 19 seats, and the majority of the popular vote:... Hon. Dean Barrow, Prime Minister "I want to begin by sincerely thanking the people of Belize for re-electing the United Democratic Party. We were combating what we were told was voter fatigue. We were going against the conventional wisdom. We were going against history in trying to win a third consecutive term, so we were all under attack. The assault was perhaps most relentless in the case of Sedi Elrington and I am particularly glad that he prevailed."

What's The Plan For This 3rd Term
And so now, the UDP has to prove itself for a third term, after a very strong, very short second term where the party's political fortunes were bolstered by Petrocaribe spending. The Prime Minister outlined the mission ahead for his party:... Hon. Dean Barrow, Prime Minister "We are ready to give it our all one more time. We are strengthen now I think by this infusion of new blood, by way of the first time candidates that have won. I am satisfied that everybody, every single candidate in the UDP worked tremendously hard, tirelessly, indefatigable and I therefore am content to know that those that won will bring this same level of unflagging energy to their service to the people of this country as members of the cabinet, whether they are full ministers or ministers of state. I say finally, to the people of Belize, we are ecstatic at your vote of confidence. We are also of course very mindful of the tremendous responsibility that comes along with that. We know that the burden of expectations will perhaps be even more crushing this time. But we assure you that we will do our absolute best to deliver comprehensively and to serve all the people of this country."

PUP Concedes Defeat Graciously
And today the Leader of the Opposition did the opposite of what he did in the aftermath of the close election of 2012. That time, he didn't accept the result, as his party took election petitions to court. But today, he was gracious in defeat:.. Hon. Francis Fonseca "We in the People's United Party always respect the will of the people. So the Belizean people have spoken. We congratulate the United Democratic Party. We congratulate Prime Minister Barrow. I have spoken to him personally. He and I had a very cordial conversation this morning and I express to him congratulations on behalf of the People's United Party, both to his party and to him personally, on a very clear and national victory for the United Democratic Party. The elections are over and as I said to Prime Minister Barrow this morning, we must begin the healing process and we must work together in the interest of the Belizean people."

PM Barrow Congratulated Fonseca On His Re-election
And now that Francis Fonseca has been politically defanged, seems the Prime Minister and him are getting along well as text buddies too. Today The PM congratulated the PUP and spoke warmly of Fonseca:.. Hon. Dean Barrow, Prime Minister "I want to also congratulate the candidates of the People's United Party. We once more had an election that was in the main peaceful, that again showcased to tremendous advantage our Belizean democracy. The People's United Party is one of the two principal partners in this democratic enterprise and certainly they fought a tremendous fight. I single out their leader the Hon. Francis Fonseca, I will tell him, I thought we had him. I though Carla had it and I was willing to give odds, but I did point out to at least one member of the media I am not a betting man and obviously I know why. My point was that we were under our own pressures, so was the leader of the opposition. He had lost two bi-elections and the municipal election. He was under strain. He kept his party together and he won in the Freetown constituency. So I must salute him and offer my congratulations. I will tell you that in the highest tradition he sent me a text message of congratulations this morning and I was very happy to able to reciprocate."

Only 12 Elected UDP Can Become Cabinet Ministers
And while there was room for political pleasantries today, the Prime Minister has got a tough few days ahead of him. He has to appoint a Cabinet and the constitution says that only two thirds of his elected 19 representatives can be in the cabinet. That's 12 ministers - meaning that 7 elected representatives and their supporters will be let down. Today, the Prime Minister explained how he will approach the appointment of his third cabinet: Hon. Dean Barrow, Prime Minister "In the circumstances I say from now I will speak with each of our winners individually over the course of the weekend, but it is quite clear that in terms of the current advice on the law, only 12 of the 19 can become full ministers. There are returning ministers. There are people with a huge degree of seniority. All that will have to be taken into account. We do want to encourage and reward the new comers that have done so splendidly, that have done so well - that have won. But only 12 persons can become full ministers. You will need to begin to wrap your head around that from now and to understand what that means, in terms of the practicality of things."

Will PM Change Ministers Of Health and Foreign Affairs?
And as the Prime Minister appoints that new cabinet, will he change his most publicly embattled ministers: Wilfred Elrington in Foreign Affairs and Pablo Marin, in health? That's what we asked him today:... Jules Vasquez "Is there key changes and specifically might these changes involve two of the most publicized and criticized ministries or ministers; the Minister of Foreign Affairs and the Minister of Health?" Hon. Dean Barrow, Prime Minister "They both won their seats, didn't they?" Jules Vasquez "Politics isn't everything." Hon. Dean Barrow, Prime Minister "It's the only thing when it comes to choosing a cabinet. No, Jules, I can't get into that. As I told you I will have enough difficulty having to deal with the fact that only 12 persons can become full ministers. If I started to speculate on who the 12 would be, that would be grossly unfair to the wining candidates and would begin my headaches fully 2-3 days before the need to start. Let me try to recover from the post-election fatigue before I tackle that particular issue and as I said in any event, as a matter of respect and courtesy and what is right, I have to sit with my people first before coming to any final decision."

Not Another Early Elections This Time Around
PM Barrow says all 7 elected UDP representatives who cannot be made full minister will be made into Ministers of State. And so, with that, Prime Minister Barrow prepares to embark on his third and final term. That's the term limit in the constitution - and it means that this third term will not be shortened like the others - because there has to be a transition. It's never happened before and the PM told us what will happen as he nears the end of this term:.. Jules Vasquez "Do you feel this is an important transition and are you concern about losing command and control of your party which is really a big part of your success, this maximum leadership?" Hon. Dean Barrow, Prime Minister "Well the constitution says that nobody can be prime minister for more than 3 terms. It never said two terms and a half or two terms and three quarters and as long as God gives me health and strength there ain't going to be anymore early elections. We will have to manage the transition and we are really getting way ahead of ourselves. But we will have to manage the transition so that at the last possible moment, that will not disadvantage my successor, I would expect to resign so that in fact whoever the party chooses as my successor can become prime minister at least for a number of months and take the party into the next general elections as prime minister."

Stann Creek West Still Undecided
Right now, the Constituency of Stann Creek West is caught in limbo. They don't know who's their area representative. And, because the race is so close between the UDP's Walter Garbutt, and the PUP's Rodwell Ferguson, this division's election outcome will be decided in court. As we reported during our election coverage last night, the UDP's Walter Garbutt was declared as the winner. Shortly after that, the results were disputed on the premise that the returning officer, Victor Paulino, had omitted the results of 2 boxes from the grand total of votes. When those were factored in, the new declaration was that the PUP incumbent Rodwell Ferguson had won by 8 votes. Garbutt called for a recount which started this afternoon in Dangriga Town under the watch of party officials and attorneys from both mass parties. Since then, the situation has been complicated further by the discovery that votes which passed scrutiny as valid, ended up rejected in this recount, and votes which were rejected, have now been passed. As of half hour ago, the ballots from last 2 of the 19 boxes were being counted, and that result should come out during this newscast.

OAS Observers Impressed; Offers Suggestions For Improvement
And while the outcome in Stann Creek West is still clouded, what does the OAS observers' team think about the way the election was conducted? Was it free and fair? They shared their preliminary findings with the press today. From the opening of the polls until the official results were tabulated, 13 observers visited 162 of the 225 polling stations country wide. They managed to cover 30 of the 31 constituencies, and the Chief of Mission told us that they were impressed by the peaceful and efficient nature of entire process: Jacinth Henry-Martin, Chief of Mission - OAS "What I can say is that the peaceful processes really, these were something that we were commenting on at all times - that the people of Belize appeared to want to want to uphold the longstanding tradition of peaceful elections and their actions and the manner in which they conducted themselves I think that was evidence of that. I also want to say that the work of the electoral and boundaries commission, we interacted with them very often - they seem very well prepared. It is our view that the administrative processes worked well. On the actual day of election everyone seemed to be very okay with the processes and what needed to be done and after the closing of the polls, there was a seamless advance into the counting system that I think should be highly commended as well and so I am not, since I don't have a rating system, I'm not going to rate, but I am going to say that Belizeans ought to be highly commended for the efficiency of the processes and the mechanisms that were in place."

The Pickstock Division Snapshot
On election day Channel 7 and KREM Television had our teams at various hotspot polling locations. Here in Belize City that meant closely monitoring the Pickstock Division which came down to a margin of 78 votes. The 3 candidates Wilfred Elrington for the UDP, Dr. Francis Smith for the PUP and Patrick Rogers for the BPP vied for the support of 3,537 registered voters, and in the end 67% of them cast a vote - more than the 61% who came out in 2012. We have that moment when Patrick Rogers exited the counting area to indicate to the awaiting press that Wilfred Elrington had won his 3rd term. Even though he only got 3.5% of the voters who did show up, he told us that he is not discouraged due to the large number of voters who stayed home. Here's how he explained it: Patrick Rogers, UDP Candidate - Pickstock "I had 94 for myself, 1016 for Dr. Francis Smith and Sedi Elrington with 1234." Daniel Ortiz "Is that the final count?" Patrick Rogers, UDP Candidate - Pickstock "It will be very close to that. It won't change much, because they are still doing some reconciliation, but those numbers will be pretty much to what it is. We are not disappointed. I said we couldn't be disappointed. We won in 5 weeks. Look what we did, we put 25 candidates together and at the end of it we knew that if we didn't get over 75% voter turnout, we wouldn't factor in. But we will factor in the next time around because the candidates that are serious will be working these divisions over the next election cycle."

Bze Rural Central Snapshot; Bev Cas' Moment Of Victory
Belize Rural Central was another very close race. That contest between PUP incumbent Dolores Balderamos Garcia and Beverly Castillo for the UDP was decided by only 58 votes! Last night when her victory was apparent, Castillo told Monica Bodden she was shaken during the counting:... Monica Bodden "Bev tell is about your victory today? How does it feel to be coming out here? I know you been doing your work. You told me today that you got this. Well do have it officially. Tell us how does that make you feel?" Beverly Castillo, BRC "Excited, exhilarating. I was trembling, I tell you the truth Monica, but we did it and thanks to the people of Belize Rural Central." Reporter "What are your plans now Miss Beverly?" Beverly Castillo, BRC "The plans are in the manifesto and Belize Rural Central deserves their fair share. Whatever happens we know that the UDP has won. We form the government and we are here to work for the people."

PM Discusses Election Twists
And while the UDP expected to roll over Balderamos Garcia, and were surprised to see the race come down so close, the real surprise of the night was Caribbean Shores where Mayor Darrell Bradley lost to Kareem Musa. The two term Mayor Bradley was one politician who could run on his record, but the newcomer Musa beat him by 56 votes. Today the PM said that one surprised him:... Hon. Dean Barrow, Prime Minister "We perhaps was more shock by the loss in Caribbean Shores I will tell you that quite frankly. I did not expect that with Darrell Bradley's absolutely outstanding record. I didn't see how that happened. I had been hearing reports that his opponent was gaining ground and various other things. But I simply thought in the end, that sort of record which is unequalled would have carried him through. So that was the biggest shock."

Former PUP Leader's Take On The Election Twists
The PUP Leader Francis Fonseca was also surprised by the storng showing in Caribbean Shores, while being equally surprised at how poorly the PUP performed in the north where they went from holding 5 of 8 seats, to now holding only 3 of 8. It's a quote stunning reversal and the PUP leader commented on it today:.. Hon. Francis Fonseca "Certainly of course surprised that we did not do better in the north. I really though some seats there we were counting on and depending on and all of our reports and analysis indicated that we would have won. We did not win. That is on concern to me. Here in the city, even though I've been getting positive reports about Kareem Musa, I felt it was an uphill struggle. So that was a major accomplishment, a major achievement, a major win. He is an impressive who fought very hard and that was certainly a great victory and of course many of our candidates here I certainly thought would have pulled it off. In Belize Rural Central - Dolores. I knew she was in a battle, because they were pouring millions and millions of dollars in Central. She came very close. But I certainly was a little surprise that she was not able to pull it off. Pickstock the same. I felt that we had Sedi Elrington on the ropes and I thought we would have been able to deliver that seat. I was counting on that seat, depending on that seat."

How Did Mayor Darrell Lose?
And so what's the story with Mayor Darrell Bradley? How did he lose to a newcomer - particularly considering that Santi Castillo won for the UDP in that same division by over almost 700 votes in 2012. It's a major reversal for a man with a proven track record, and when we saw the mayor at the Prime Minister's press conference today, we asked him about his campaign falling apart:... Jules Vasquez "There is obviously something wrong in your camp. Do you think that is partly to blame?" Darrell Bradley, Defeated in Caribbean Shores "Again at the present moment, it's the day after elections. We haven't really had enough rest and enough time to reflect in relation to where we slip down and what needs to be done in terms of any kind of correction if that is the case. I think the overall theme of your question is that yes, in terms of a campaign machinery, that's very critical that there is energy, that there is seamless execution especially in election day and we gain ground for significant parts of the day, but you could see the inching up especially at the close of the day and I think that was where we fell down."

A Recap Of the Cayo Election Battle Grounds
Earlier on, we showed you election day action in Pickstock and Belize Rural Central - two of the tightest seats. But Cayo was also a battleground. Courtney Weatherburne and cameraman Codie Noralez started off in one of the pivotal seats in the country: Cayo Central and also covered the grounds in Cayo North and Cayo Northeast. There was a spirited atmosphere dominating the Cayo divisions yesterday - here's how they looked. In terms of the final figures, In Cayo Central UDP Candidate Rene Montero garnered 3,299 votes while PUP Candidate Dan Silva got 3,036 votes. That is a very comfortable difference of 263 votes for Monetero. In Cayo North UDP candidate Omar Figueroa got 2,674 votes beating his opponent PUP Michel Chebat who got 2,515 votes. And in Cayo Northeast -although the UDP had a stronger presence - PUP candidate Orlando "Landy" Habet came out victorious. Habet got 2,217 votes while his UDP opponent John August got 2,145 votes.

Dr. Smith Discusses His Defeat In Pickstock
Earlier on in the newscast, we told you about the surprises in the election - mainly in Caribbean Shores and the North. But, a real surprise for most of those persons not living in the Pickstock division is that Wilfred Elrington held on as area representative. We asked his opponent - Dr. Francis Smith who has now lost to Elrington in two successive terms by the more or less the same margin - if this will force him into political retirement:...

Sedi Muses On His 2nd Re-election
And Elrington was more circumspect. He say those media personalities and activists who vilified him - they don't vote:... Hon. Wilfred Elrington "Actually the media doesn't vote and critics on the press don't vote. People who vote are the constituents and I minister to them very diligently. Although I am perhaps the minister who is most out of the country, I spent most time with my people, or one of the minister who spends the most time with the constituents and if you see the kind of work that we have done back there and the kind of benefits that we have for the people you'd be amazed." Jules Vasquez "Your opponent say and we have to voice it, your opponent say that you were spending like crazy in the last days and that is why they claimed you won." Hon. Wilfred Elrington "You will know Jules that I am a most frugal person. I don't even like to drive. I prefer to walk. I don't have a cell phone. I don't go to restaurants to eat. No, actually we get some funds through the government program and I spend all of it and then I had about 4 people who gave me contributions for this election."

The New Political Landscape
Earlier on we gave you the precise results for Cayo but how about the entire country? Well, we have the bigger picture for you now. We start off in the North with Corozal Bay: the UDP's Pablo Marin beat out the PUP's Gregorio "Papas" Garcia by 146 votes - almost identical to the 148 votes he beat him by in 2012. In Corozal North UDP Hugo Patt won that seat by 493 votes, better than the 199 he won by in 2012. Moving on to Corozal South East the PUP's Florencio Marin Jr. beat Evan Cowo by 164 votes. In 2012, he won by 412 votes. In Corozal South West UDP's Dr. Angel Campos upset the PUP's Ramiro Ramirez by a margin of 219 votes. In Orange Walk Central the PUP's Johnny Briceno got only 50.5% of the vote, but beat out his UDP opponent by over 600 votes. Notably the BPP had their best showing in this area where former UDP Mayor Phillip De la Fuente got 493 votes. Looking at Orange Walk North UDP power house Gaspar "Gapi" Vega beat Ramon "Munchi" Cerventes by 489 votes. In Orange Walk South PUP incumbent Jose Mai won by only 62 votes. In Orange Walk East, newcomer for the UDP Elodio Aragon won easily by 547 votes.

"Clear The Land" Weathered The Public Battering
And one politician whom we didn't ask about retirement is Edmond Castro. Despite also being battered in the press, he won easily over Major Lloyd Jones. His margin went down from 535 votes in the last election to 400 this time. How does he remain popular in the face of huge negative campaigns against him? He told us today:.. And which ministry would Castro want? We asked him..

Will Sedi Return After This Term In Office
And so now that he has won three terms, we asked Elrington if he has any plans on retiring like some of the elder statesmen of the UDP. Here's what he said:... Jules Vasquez "Will you continue in politics or are you thinking like Mr. Finnegan, Mr. Martinez, and Mr. Dean Barrow?" Hon. Wilfred Elrington "I think it will be good for us to start thinking of a successor. I've been in politics running since 1993. I've finish a good career in private sector and a number of very good young people are coming up and I really think that it is right that they be given a chance. I do not rule out not running for a 4th term." Jules Vasquez "Do you rule it out?" Hon. Micheal Finnegan, Mesopotamia Area Representative "Why you want I retire?" Jules Vasquez "Would you advise Mr. Elrington to retire now while he is a ahead?"

#508902 - 11/06/15 06:00 AM Re: Today's Belize News: November 6, 2015 [Re: Marty]
Marty Offline

Channel 5

Prime Minister Dean Barrow Sworn In
Prime Minister Dean Barrow has done the unprecedented – led the United Democratic Party to a third consecutive term in office. He was sworn in by Governor-General Sir Colville Young [...]

P.U.P. Leader Francis Fonseca Steps Down
While the PM was taking the oath in Belmopan, in the city, there was stunning news coming from the Opposition and it is the end of an era for Francis [...]

New Leader Will Be Selected at a National Convention
According to Fonseca, his departure will create a vacuum in the leadership of the party that is expected to be filled via a national convention at a time that is [...]

Fonseca Says He Will Not Influence Choice of New Leader
Fonseca’s decision to step down, according to him, was contingent upon the outcome of the general elections and that choice was made prior to November fourth.  When asked if he [...]

PM Barrow Salutes Fonseca
When he held his press conference this morning, U.D.P. leader Dean Barrow could not have known that just hours after, leader of the Opposition Francis Fonseca would announce his resignation, [...]

Barrow Says G.O.B. Spending Influenced Results of Elections
Any analysis of the election results where the U.D.P.’s success is concerned will be for the political pundits, but certainly perception is that the results were assisted generously by the [...]

PM Gives Credit for Queen Square Victory to Sister B
While Prime Minister can boast an unprecedented and historic third term for the United Democratic Party, he also has bragging rights in Queen Square where he has enjoyed tremendous success. [...]

Barrow Will Select His Cabinet This Weekend
Barrow says that all U.D.P. candidates who were not successful at the polls have messaged him claiming that they are not disheartened and will remain as caretakers in their respective [...]

Rodwell Ferguson is Stann Creek West Area Representative
At news time, a recount is ongoing in Stann Creek West. As the U.D.P. was being swept in office for a third term on Wednesday night, Walter Garbutt prematurely declared [...]

P.U.P. Gain 2 Seats in Belize City
In Belize City, where the disparity in the size of constituencies range from three thousand and eighty-four in Fort George to six thousand three hundred and five registered voters in [...]

Pablo Marin is Victorious in Corozal Bay
In Corozal Bay, Pablo Marin retained his seat in a hotly contested battle. Marin, who served as minister of health, has been battered by a number of scandals in that [...]

Hugo Patt Retains Corozal North Seat
Hugo Patt retained his seat in Corozal North by a margin of four hundred and ninety-three votes ahead of first time runner, David Castillo. On Election Day, the machineries were [...]

P.U.P. 2 – U.D.P. 2 in Orange Walk
When the final official results were released at around eleven Wednesday night, The P.U.P. held on to two seats in Orange Walk – Central and South. The U.D.P. wrested away [...]

P.U.P.’s Ramiro Ramirez Loses Corozal Southeast
Corozal South West and South East divisions were the last to bring in their results.  P.U.P.’s Ramiro Ramirez, lost the division to Doctor Angel Campos of the U.D.P. by two [...]

3 Seats for the U.D.P. in Cayo
All eyes were on the Cayo District where in 2012, the P.U.P. came within sixty votes of winning two divisions and general elections. On Wednesday night, Julius Espat easily beat [...]

O.A.S. Praises Belize for Peaceful Elections
An O.A.S. Electoral Observer Mission is wrapping up a visit to Belize. And this afternoon at the Biltmore Plaza, it issued a preliminary report in respect of Wednesday’s elections. According [...]

Boots Wins by Narrow Margin in Port Loyola
Anthony ‘Boots’ Martinez help on to Port Loyola, and that area has been a U.D.P. stronghold. But the margin shows that Martinez has lost considerable ground. When the final ballot [...]

Darrell Bradley Reflects on Loss in Caribbean Shores
The Prime Minister has said that in all the results countrywide, he was most surprised by the results in Caribbean Shores, where Darrell Bradley was defeated by Kareem Musa. It’s [...]


United Democratic Party Wins General Elections For Third Consecutive Term
The United Democratic Party will go down in the Belize history books as the first political party to win three consecutive terms in office since Independence. The party has won a majority of the seats in the House of Representatives by a margin of 19 to 12. And while that result may seem comfortable, the race was closer than that. In fact, a difference only of 58 votes in Belize Rural central, 76 votes in Port Loyola and 78 votes in Pickstock gave the UDP the majority it needed to form the government. This morning, the UDP held a press conference and the Prime Minister elect gave his impressions of the election outcome, despite all odds with the Media ….. Here's how that went: “I want to begin by sincerely thanking the People of Belize for reelecting the United Democratic Party. We were against tremendous odds in terms of the relentless public relations campaign against us, the relentless media campaign against us and I don’t say this I say this in sorrow not in anger and no doubt that is as it should be but I am very glad that we proved can’t say all of you but certainly the vast majority of you in the media so spectacularly wrong. We are positive that we have both the financial and the mental wear it all to overcome the challenges and to record yet another successful term for the United Democratic Party government.

Honorable Dean Barrow Sworn In As Prime Minister Of Belize
Late this evening, Hon. Dean Oliver Barrow was sworn in as the Prime Minister of Belize by the Governor-General His Excellency Sir Colville Young. The brief ceremony was held at the Belize House in Belmopan. The Prime Minister was accompanied by his wife, children, other relatives and supporters. This is Hon. Barrow’s third consecutive term in office and the third time serving as Prime Minister. The other elected representatives are expected to be appointed and sworn-in next week.

Honorable Francis Fonseca Stands Down As Party Leader For PUP
The People’s United Party leader Francis Fonseca will step down from that position. The announcement was made by Fonseca himself today only hours after winning the Freetown division in Belize City. Even though he won his seat, the PUP’s loss at the polls yesterday marked Fonseca’s fourth consecutive loss at the polls as party leader in just one year. Fonseca spoke with the press today and here is what he had to say about his decision. “Ladies and Gentlemen it has been my distinct, honor and privilege to lead the People’s United Party over the past four years, I think given the result of yesterday’s elections it is right and appropriate that I stand down as the leader of the People’s United Party, I do not intend to do so immediately certainly I want to make sure there is an orderly transition, so I will advise the chairman of the party to ensure what we put in place the structure to ensure that that smooth transition takes place over the next few weeks...


Francis Fonseca Announces His Resignation as PUP’s Party Leader
And while Dean Barrow was being sworn in as Prime Minister for the third time, Francis Fonseca was announcing he would be stepping down as the leader of the People’s United Party. Reporter Hipolito Novelo was at the party’s headquarters for the announcement. HIPOLITO NOVELO REPORTING “On May 5 2015, Francis Fonseca told Love News […]

3-Time Prime Minister Expresses Gratitude to Family, Voters and the Opposition
General Elections were held in the thirty one divisions around the country with the polls being opened at 7am on Wednesday, November 4, 2015. For the first time in Belize’s electoral history there were ninety candidates contesting the 31 seats. In the end, when all votes were cast and ballots counted, the United Democratic Party […]

Elections 2015: 19 Seats for UDP and 11 Seats for PUP
Up to news time this evening, the results for the Stann Creek West constituency are yet to be officially announced by the Elections and Boundaries Department. That is a division that has representation for the PUP via Rodwell Ferguson while the UDP has Walter Garbutt. But notwithstanding that area, there are thirty other divisions to […]

General Elections 2015 Described as Peaceful
Election Watch 2015, organized by Love FM and Love Television, saw at least sixty two correspondents around the country, reporting from every division. Those reports kept the activity on the phone lines and internet channels quite busy since the opening of the polls at 7am. Prior to the elections, the national security forces were already […]

PUP Takes Back Caribbean Shores
For the 2015 General Elections, there were five thousand four hundred and forty voters registered in the Caribbean Shores division and only two candidates vied for the post of Area Representative. At the close of the polls, the amount of voters that turned out to exercise their right, stood at just over sixty five percent […]

Two Areas of Concern Went to the UDP
In yesterday’s election there were several seats that the political enthusiasts were looking at keenly. Two of those areas were the Pickstock and the Belize Rural North divisions. In the Pickstock division, the re-elected representative Wilfred ‘Sedi’ Elrington took a lot of flak surrounding the Belize/Guatemala and there were some concerns that he would not […]

Court News
Twenty-two year old Mark Myers, an air condition unit technician of Freetown Road, was remanded into custody when he appeared today before Magistrate Carlon Mendoza and was arraigned on charges of attempted murder, grievous harm and use of deadly means of harm. The charges are in connection with an incident which occurred around 3 a.m. […]

Boledo Vendor Gets Badly Beaten in Northern Belize
Twenty four year old Kevin Salazar is at the Karl Heusner Memorial Hospital after being badly beaten earlier this week in Orange Walk Town. Reports are that Salazar, a boledo vendor, was socializing with some friends in the wee hours of Tuesday morning when one of them attacked him with a blunt object hitting him […]

Police News: Stabbing, Robbery and Drugs
25-year-old Brandon Allen was stabbed multiple times on Wednesday. Allen was reportedly in the vicinity of Taylor’s Alley when the incident occurred. He was transported to the Karl Heusner Memorial Hospital where he remains in a critical but stable condition. Police have since detained one man pending charges. Police investigation continues. Earlier this week, […]


Belize’s superbond yield rose to 10 percent
Bloomberg has announced that Belize’s superbond yield rose by 56 points to 10 percent yesterday afternoon as voters were deciding who would be the next government of Belize. Bonds had been consistently falling in the last two years and the rally is the highest since the security was offered in...

Mark King has parting words for Lake I
UDP’s Mark King is no longer the area representative forLake Independence after experiencing a sound defeat from PUP’s Cordel Hyde. King, who has been in the public spotlight on numerous occasions for his outlandish comments, has once again managed to make the news, this time with a face...

PlusTV denied access to PM Swearing In
Today, following the United Democratic Party’s third consecutive win, the leader of the party, Hon. Dean Oliver Barrow, was sworn in as Prime Minister of the country for the third consecutive term. The swearing in ceremony happened this afternoon at around 3:00 pm at the Governor General’s house in ...

Rodwell Ferguson emerges victor after Stann Creek West recount
Walter Garbut and Rodwell Ferguson were neck and neck in the elections in Stann Creek West. At the end of the counting of the ballots, the returning officer declared UDP Walter Garbutt the victor. However, he had to recant a little later upon the final counts when Ferguson won the final count by 8 votes. UDP’s then demanded a recount which occurred today at Sacred Hearts School in Dangriga. After much deliberation, and arguments over newly rejected ballots, PUP’s Ferguson emerged the winner after Garbutt conceded following that recount.

Small fire at Belmopan Restaurant
There was a small fire at Caladium Restaurant in Belmopan this morning sometime before 9 o’clock. It wasn’t anything major as we understand that one of the stoves caught fire underneath. The proprietors quickly worked at extinguishing the blaze and being as the fire department is just a few yards aw...

Men had false certificates of registration
Mark Rosales and Marcos Basto, two residents of San Pedro, Corozal, who allegedly had false Belizean certificates of registration, were charged with 13 counts of possession of false documents when they appeared today before Magistrate Deborah Rogers. They pled not guilty to the charges. Magistrate R...

Police charge man for Election Day shooting in Belize City
More shots were fired on Election Day, this time in Belize City but no Minister instructed those cops to desist from arresting the man. Malcolm Jamal Myers was charged with attempted murder, use of deadly means of harm and grievous harm against Yarde. His vicrtim was 22 year old Trevor Yarde, Juni...

The Guardian

UDP 3-Peat
The United Democratic Party is now enjoying a third historic consecutive term in government after the People of Belize elected 20 of its 31 candidates to serve as area representatves across the country. Immediately after it became evident that the victory had been secured, the Prime Minister, Hon. Dean Barrow made his way to Party Headquarters at the foot of the Belchina Bridge where he delivered a victory address. It was not a formal address but it was one that was delivered straight from the heart. Hon. Barrow firstly expressed that it was a “fantastic privilege to be here as we celebrate this historic achievement .” He went on to thank all the citizens of the country and congratulated all the candidates of the UDP. He explained that the victory could not have been possible had the people not wanted it expressing that the people were hungry for a third term of UDP in office. He singled out Hon. Michael Finnegan, Patrick Faber, Anthony ‘Boots’ Martinez and he placed special praises on Wilfred ‘Sedi’ Elrington. “They had Sedi under constant and relentless assault but in a cool and unruffled manner he said he knew what he was doing based on work and that he would win bigger than last time,” explained the P.M.

UDP secures 20 of 31 seats
The final count as the counting was completed countrywide is that the UDP has increased its mandate. After 11 hours of polling, the UDP came out victorious with 20 of 31 constituencies now being represented by the party. In the Belize District, Party Leader, Dean Barrow will continue to represent the people of Queen’s Square. Patrick Faber will do the same for the people of Collett. Anthony ‘Boots’ Martinez’ will be there for Port Loyola. Michael Finnegan continues to represent Mesopotamia. Tracy Taegar Panton is now the new Area Representative for the Albert Division. Wilfred ‘Sedi’ Elrington will represent the people of Pickstock. Edmond Castro returns for a third consecutive term as the area rep for Belize Rural North. Newcomer Beverly Castillo will represent Belize Rural Central. For the fourth term Manuel Heredia returns to the house as the representative for Belize Rural South. In the Cayo district there are now 4 UDP representatives in the name of John Saldivar for Belmopan. Rene Montero in Cayo Central. Omar Figueroa remains as the Area Representative for Cayo North. Still undefeated, Erwin Contreras retains his seat as representative for Cayo West.

Sedi Again!
Wilfred Peter “Sedi” Elrington and the people of the PICKSTOCK DIVISION have done it again. For the last two or three years Sedi has been taking nothing else but bad press. His detractors where relentless. They used every shred of ammunition they had to attack him. Whenever he made a public statement they attacked whatever he said. Sedi you see, is a well read gentleman. He speaks from an informed position and a position of truth. Sure there may be people who don’t understand what he said but he is consistent in the way he speaks on any given issue. He has always maintained that the people OF THE PICKSTOCK DIVISION support him and he works for the community which supported him on election day. Wednesday November 4, proved just that. Sedi has the support of the voters of PICKSTOCK, they have his back and want him to represent them in BELMOPAN. Now that we know who the people of Pickstock wants, will they now Stop attacking him, now that he has won a 3-peat?

CCJ orders reparations for Maya in Belize
The Caribbean Court of Justice has ordered that the Government of Belize, which has settled the final appeal of the Maya Land Rights case out of court, make reparations with Maya living in the Toledo District. The Government of Belize, which has been vilified as a group of ministers without any social conscience toward the Maya people, has once again showed that it respects the wisdom of the High Court judges. For 20 years or so the Maya have been fighting for recognition before international courts, and the courts of Belize. This particular appeal case dates back to 2008 when the late Francis Johnston made an incursion onto farmlands in the Golden Stream Village. The Supreme Court of Belize ruled that Maya do have communal land rights, but the Government decided that it was prudent to appeal that decision at the Court of Appeal. Again Maya Land rights were upheld, but the Appeal Court did not make an order against Government to enforce that. Both sides appealed that decision to the highest court in Belize, the Caribbean Court of Justice. Surprising the nation with its magnanimity, the Government, represented by the Senior Counsel Denys Barrow - who the PUP would have you erroneously believe is being overpaid - announced to the CCJ in its first in-person session in Belize, that an out-of-court settlement had been arrived at. The Government has conceded that their land rights, by virtue of their centuries-old heritage exists, and must be protected. The Government also conceded to consult with the Maya on the best way to protect those rights - enjoyed informally - in a formal system such as a land title system.

Ceremony for the departed held at House of Culture in San Ignacio
A brief ceremony to honor the souls of the departed was held at the San Ignacio House of Culture last Friday. An altar for Merdith Sanz, who was a mid wife and seamstress, was set up as the focal point for the ceremonies last week. A prayer group from the Roman Catholic Church was also present to offer words of praise to the Holy Father. The typical favorite foods for the departed such as Ixpasha, sweet pumpkin and a variety of fudges were distributed to the visitors. A professor from Galen University, Sherry Gibbs, was also present to witness the gathering of worshipers. Merdith Sanz was among the first trained mid wives in Belize, who had decided at an early age to follow the footsteps of her mom as a nurse. Born in 1930, Merdith Sanz assisted over a thousand women at child birth, and on one occasion had to do her work by the steps of her house. As a faithful Catholic, Merdith Sanz was a disciplinarian.

Election watch in the Cayo District
The election watch continues in the Cayo Distict as voters from all contesting parties turned out in sporadic numbers to exercise their democratic right. On the line for these elections are hopefuls such as Julius Espat for the People’s United Party in Cayo South and Ralph Huang for the United Democratic Party, Orlando Habet for the PUP in Cayo North East and John August for the UDP as well as Patrick Andrews for the PUP in Belmopan and John Saldivar for the UDP. Other candidates for the 2015 election are Michel Chebat for the PUP in Cayo North and Dr. Omar Figueroa for the UDP. Numerous voting areas were strategically positioned around Cayo to bring convenience to the voters. Election officers were present in some of these areas to ensure smooth coordination. Returning Officer for Cayo North Marcello Winsor exited today from a short meeting with representatives from both the PUP and UDP at the polling station in Bullet Tree Falls to encourage calmness.

Homeage held in Benque Viejo del Carmen for former teacher
As part of the ‘Finados’ celebrations or ‘All Souls Day’, prayers were held in homage to former teacher Benedicto Ramirez at the House of Culture in Benque Viejo del Carmen on Monday of this week. Students from both the Mopan Technical High School and the Mount Carmel Primary School were present to remember Benedicto Ramirez, who died on April 15, 2014. A female from Mount Carmel Primary School lit one of the four candles at the altar of Benedicto Ramirez. According to Ingrid Can, assistant coordinator at the Benque House of Culture, the four candles at the altar represents the cardinal point to guide the good spirits of our dead relatives who come to feast on what is served at the altar. The tradition being carried forward is a Maya-Mestizo tradition, in which it is believed that the food served at the altar should be the favorite of the persons when they were alive.

Belize Athletics Association to hold National Track and Field Championship
The Belize Athletics Association invites all athletes and track enthusiasts once again to be a part of a National Track and Field Championship event. The event will be hosted at the Marion Jones Sports Complex on the 14-15 November, 2015. All athletes 16 years and older can participate in the events. Registration forms can be obtained from and returned to the BAA via email ( belizeathleticsassociation@gmail.com) or from our Face Book page (Belize Athletics Association). Registration forms can also be obtained from and returned to the National Sports Council’s offices throughout the country. Please be advised that registration forms should be submitted no later than Wednesday 11 November, 2015; no late registrations will be accepted. Cost of registration is $10.00 per athlete. Events will include: 100m 200m 400m 800m 1500m 5000m 10,000m 4x100m 4x400m Long Jump Triple Jump High Jump Javelin Shot put Discus

Wesley College boys win basketball opener
The Central Region Secondary Schools Basketball competition for school year 2015-2016 continued over the last week with a number of games on the schedule. On Thursday 29 October, 2015, in the female competition game played, Gwen Lizarraga High School defeated Wesley College by the score of 19-13. The top scorer for Gwen Lizarraga High School was Amber Usher with7 points. For Wesley College, the top scorer was Kristy Terry with 8 points. In the male game, Wesley College defeated Nazarene High School by the score of 66-51. The top scorers for Wesley College were Shaquille Crawford with 22 points and Tevaun Lennan with 15 points. Meanwhile, the top scorers for Nazarene High School were Shaqueem Valerio with 17 points and Jayden Humes with 11 points. The competition continued on Friday 30 October, 2015, with two more games on the schedule. In the female game, Maud Williams High School edged out Ladyville Technical High School by the score of 37-36. The top scorers for Maud Williams High School were Latifa Ferguson with 19 points and Ashley Bailey with 15 points.

Belmopan Bandits maintain lead in Premier League Competition
The Premier League of Belize Opening Season Tournament continued over the last week end with three games on the schedule. On Sunday 1 November, 2015, out at the Norman Broaster Stadium in San Ignacio Town, the visiting Belize Defence Force edged the defending national football champions, Verdes FC by the score of 2-1. The Belize Defence Force was the first to get onto the scoreboard when James Flores scored the 1st goal of the game in the 32nd minute of play to give his team a 1-0 lead. At the end of the first half of the game, the Belize Defence Force was able to maintain the 1-0 lead. In the second half of the game, the defending national football champions Verdes FC managed to get unto the scoreboard when Gilroy Thurton scored the equalising goal in the 51st minute of play.

Julian Cho Technical High School to host National Volleyball championships
The National Secondary Schools Sports Association (NSSSA) National Volleyball championship, which is co-sponsored by Bowen and Bowen Ltd., and SOL Belize will take centre stage on November 6-7, 2015, out in the Toledo District. The National Volleyball championship will feature the champions in the female and male division from the four regions that makes up the National Secondary Schools Sports Association and will be hosted by Julian Cho Technical High School. The games will commence on Friday 6 November, 2015, and will conclude on Saturday 7 November, 2015. The teams that have earned the right to participate in the national championship includes from the Northern Region Muffles College (female and male); from the Central Region St. Catherine Academy (female) and St. John’s College (male); from the Western Region Belmopan Comprehensive High School (female) and Sacred Heart College (male) and from the Southern Region Stann Creek Ecumenical College (female) and Toledo Community College (male).

Save Us From This Political Disorder, Kids
Until individuals demonstrate character and moral literacy, we cannot eliminate the anger and disrespect in political debate. Although some would recommend forming policies that would force candidates to be more respectful, what we need is a more thorough teaching of the character trait, honesty, to this generation. To be honest is to be real, genuine, and authentic. Honest people express respect to themselves and others, while dishonest people do not. Consequently, politics today is based around the backbiting slandering of candidates. The future of politics depends on approaching moral and value-based generations. Kids are taught with more emphasis on their achievements and accomplishments rather than their journey of becoming a person of integrity. And there lies the problem. Although students take many standardized tests per year, they focus solely on students' academic achievements, while the building of moral character is often overlooked. It's no doubt that an academically successful student can benefit the overall development of a country; however, without the surety of developing a code of conduct, students are expected to act with a negative character. Neglecting character development will lead to the instability of a person, meaning that person will fall into the category of a Band-Wagoner. By not being a critical and independent thinker, one can follow a negative wave of action, resulting in a degrading display of one’s character.

Man stabbed in Cayo by Blue Angels Night Club
One male person met his demise and another two were injured during brawls outside the Blue Angels Night Club in San Ignacio Town over the weekend. At about 4:14 am on Sunday of this past weekend, information was received of a fight in front of the Blue Angels Night Club on Hudson Street in San Ignacio. Checks in the immediate area revealed people dispersing and one male person was found with injures, who was taken to the San Ignacio Police Station, then transported to the hospital. Whilst said person was being transported to the hospital, Police received another report of a male person by the steps of Bismillah Furniture Shop. Upon checking, San Ignacio Police was able to determine that the person was motionless and had stab wounds to the chest area. The scene was processed by Police and the body transported to the San Ignacio Town Hospital, where it was pronounced dead on arrival. Further investigation revealed that the body was that of 20 year old Iter Espino, a Guatemalan resident of Buena Vista Village. From information gathered, it was determined that Iter Espino was socializing at the Blue Angels Night Club and after the establishment had closed came in the company of his friend Franklin Garcia, 20 years old also of Buena Vista Village.

Twin brothers shot in Belmopan
A pair of twin brothers, 26 year-old Elvis Godoy Sr., and Josel Godoy, along with Elvis’ 5 year-old son, Elvis Jr., are very fortunate to be alive after a failed execution attempt was made on their lives on Saturday night, October 31. The family reports that the two brothers were sitting on a makeshift bench at their home in the Salvapan area of the City of Belmopan. They were socializing when 5 year-old Elvis Jr. ran out of the house carrying his favorite handheld video game. He intended to go to his father, but that’s when 2 men wearing masks over their face, arrived in front of the house. Immediately as they stopped, the pair pulled out weapons and unloaded about 12 shots at the family. Both Josel and Elvis Godoy Sr. were seriously injured, and so was 5 year-old Elvis Jr. One of the bullets struck him as well.

Ignatius Williams charged for attempted murder
Police have cracked the case of a stabbing incident that occurred last weekend in the Saint Martin’s area. Ignatius Williams, 21, has been charged for a stabbing incident that has left Jerome Locke, 22, in a critical but stable condition at the Karl Heusner Memorial Hospital. Locke’s mother, Melita Flores, spoke to court reporters on Monday, November 2. She said her son was stabbed with a dagger once to the upper left side of his chest on Friday, October 23 and remains hospitalized. She said he collapsed twice and was rushed to the hospital with an object lodged in his chest. He was stabalized after emergency surgery. Doctors told his mother that him being alive is a miracle since the injury was just over his heart. Locke was placed on machine to assist in breathing but his condition has improved and he is now breathing on his own. Locke said her son told her from his hospital bed that Ignatius Williams, who is a friend of his friends, stabbed him because of an incident that ocurred 7 months ago at the BTL Park.

Howard Smith Nazarene Primary School in Benque gets new toilet block
Howard Smith Nazarene Primary School in Benque Viejo del Carmen now has a new toilet block for its 456 students and 25 members staff. The new toilet block was recently opened and comes courtesy of the efforts of the San Ignacio Rotary Club and Rotary International. A majority of the funds for the toilet facilities is also coming from a Rotary partner in Fairbanks, Alaska. Doing the cutting of the ribbon was Patrick Karney from District 4250, Ardulfa Velasquez, Principal of the Howard Smith Nazarene Primary School as well as Michael Pollen from the Rotary Club of Fairbank Alaska. Present to witness the opening of the new facilities was Luis Carballo, the Principal Education Officer in charge of the Cayo District, Raymond Shepphard, Local Manager as well as the Reverend Werner Cano. According to Principal Ardulfa Velasquez, for many years the Howard Smith School was faced with many challenges as it related to bathroom facilities and location. The former bathrooms had been constructed at the entrance of the school and with poor ventilation. This became a hazard to visitors, teachers and students. Fortunately in June of last year, the Principal was approached by Patrick Karney from the Rotary District 4250, who advised that a Rotary group in Alaska was interested in assisting with the school’s bathroom project.

Putting some PUP candidates under the microscope
Dear voters of Belize, as November 4, 2015 draws nearer, it is important for us to get to know for whom we are voting for. Here I have a short list of some PUP candidates that you need to know so that you should BEWARE when you go to the polls on said date. FRANCIS FONSECA (Freetown) HE’S DANGEROUS FOR BELIZE! He’s not about serving people, but about serving himself. For him it’s all about power and greed for money. As Attorney General he was privy to the Secret Accommodation Agreement which Said Musa signed with the Ashcroft Empire that caused tens of millions of dollars in losses in the form of tax exemption. These monies could have been used for Health, to equip all our hospitals and clinics countrywide with dialysis machines for Belizeans with renal problems. He said nothing and did nothing to advise then Prime Minister Musa not to sign said agreement. In fact he along with Musa signed on to the agreement. As leader of the PUP, he can’t even run and manage his party. How can the people of Belize expect him to manage the affairs of state? With Francis Fonseca at the helm of the ship of state, Ralph Fonseca will surely be the chief captain of the ship. FRANCIS IS NOT AN OPTION. Dr. Carla Barnett is the best candidate to lead Freetown to prosperity.

In February 2013 the IMF engaged in a tax reform exercise on Belize ready
In February 2013 the IMF engaged in a tax reform exercise on Belize. Coming out of that report was the IMF’s stern warning that GOB should decrease the Income Tax threshold to 13,000, broaden the GST tax base by converting all ZERO RATED items to rated items. GOB should tax capital gains, interest and dividends, and should consider taxing mobile air time. PM Barrow resisted the IMF and categorically stated that he will refuse to institute any new taxes or any increase in tax. Instead he vowed to let the Superbond lapse thereby forcing the bond holders to renegotiate. The IMF and the Leader of the Opposition barked at this notion. Francis Fonseca in his usual cry baby style warned that the International Organizations will shun Belize and our credit ratings will take a beating. PM Barrow despite serious warnings from the IMF and the IMF’s desire to have Belize on a standby arrangement, went ahead and successfully restructured the BOND. The PM had always maintained that he cannot afford to tax the Belize public with such an albatross. The Superbond was successfully restructured in March 2013, earning Belize around $500 million in savings.

World Food Day celebrated in Belize
A one day celebration of World Food Day was held on Friday of last week at the Mopan Technical High School in Benque Viejo del Carmen. The event should have been held on October 16th, which is recognized around the World as World Food Day, but it had to be postponed due to inclement weather. Some 21 schools from the Primary and Secondary School levels visited the Mopan School and had an opportunity to visit many booths related to food and agriculture. Students were also able to visit a fish pond and broad leaf vegetable plots thanks to the Taiwanese Technical Mission. For this year World Food Day is being celebrated under the Theme, “Social Protection and agriculture: breaking the cycle of rural poverty.” Social protection can be defined as a range of solutions, often combined with each other, such as work opportunities, provision of food, money and services that are designed to support the vulnerable and help them move out of hunger and poverty. In Belize we have the Building Opportunities for Our Social Transformation BOOST Program, which provides a financial incentive to families, who immunize and send their children to school and has been recognized by World Bank experts as a model project for the developing World.

Veola Pook soon to be free
Veola Pook, 57, will be a free woman in less than two years even though she was convicted of murder on July 8, 2011 and sentenced to life imprisonment on July 20, 2011 for killing her common-law-husband, Orlando Vasquez, 49, on December 31, 2008 in Rancho Dolores Village. At the time of the incident Pook was a housewife of Rancho Dolores. Vasquez, who lived with Pook in a common-law-relationship, was set on fire at around 6:00 p.m., just minutes after he stepped into his kitchen to eat his traditional ham that had been prepared. He got no ham; instead, the prosecution claims that Pook set him on fire then stood there and watched him burn to death. Pook’s daughter, Violet Jeffords, testified that on that day she heard a loud scream and ran outside by her kitchen door to see where the screaming was coming from. That’s when she saw the fire. The flame was coming from out of her mother’s kitchen, said Jeffords. Unable to see properly from her kitchen door, Jeffords then ran to where the blaze was coming from and that’s when she saw her brother assisting her stepfather by throwing water on him because he was on fire. During the incident, Jeffords testified that her mother just stood there and did nothing. Another witness for the prosecution was Evan Pook, a cousin to the accused, who testified that after the incident he visited the family yard and called for help.

3 convicted of Salvation Army burglary
Three out of a group of five men have been convicted of burglary and handling stolen goods in relation to the breaking and entering of the Salvation Army Primary School in July of 2011. Charles Middleton, 19, Juan Bardalez, 20, and Elmer Linarez, 23, were found guilty by Senior Magistrate Sharon Fraser on Tuesday, November 3. All but one of the accused were minors at the time of the incident. Sometime between June 24 and 28, 2011 people broke into the Salvation Army’s Computer Lab and stole a number of computers and accessories. Police were able to get credible information; including a confession statement from the youth identified as the ring leader, Charles Middleton. On July 28, 2011, Bardalez, Linarez and others were allegedly found in possession of some of the stolen items. Middleton was charged with burglary, while Bardalez, Linarez, Dixon Montero and Cruz Allen were charged with handling stolen goods.

Cop Freed of Gun Assault Charge ready
Police Constable Linsdale Blease, 33, is free from a charge of discharging a firearm in public after Chief Magistrate Anne Marie Smith told him that he has no case to answer to on Thursday, October 29. Blease was arrested and charged in February of this year after his own step-brother, Cordel Duran, accused him of discharging a firearm in public. Cordel Duran told the court that he was between mile 25 and 26 on the George Price Highway when he was approached by PC Blease who pulled out a gun, fired a shot at his foot then placed the gun at his chest. Two other witnesses, fire fighters, who were in the area testified that they saw when PC Blease came to the area but didn’t see him assault Duran in anyway. They said that PC Blease pointed the firearm at a burning bus and fired a shot in the back but he never pointed it at anyone. It was not until during the trial that it was revealed that PC Blease and the victim were related since Blease’s mother lives with Duran’s father.

Darwin Guerrero, a 26 year-old hardworking father of 2, was brutality gunned down and killed in a broad-daylight shooting on Bella Vista Street in San Ignacio Town. He was working on Tuesday, November 3, on one of the concrete streets being upgraded when his life was taken from him. According to eyewitnesses, Guerrero was on the job taking a slight break at around 8 a.m. when a man drove up on an all-terrain vehicle and pulled out a gun. He allegedly saw the gunman and recognized him, and as soon as he turned away to try to flee, he was shot several times in the back. That gunman sped away, leaving Guerrero to slowly expire on the job site. He was rushed to San Ignacio Hospital, but he succumbed to his injuries.

Guillermo Silva, 19, Charged for Carnal Knowledge of Girl, 15
A teenager is on remand at the Belize Central Prison after he was charged for engaging in sexual activities with his 15-year-old girlfriend, who is a resident of a child care centre. Guillermo Silva, 19, a farmer and resident of #167 Antelope Street Extension was arraigned in the Belize City Magistrate’s Court before Chief Magistrate Anne Marie Smith to answer to a single charge of sexual assault. Silva was unrepresented in court and no plea was taken from him. Due to the nature of the offense, he was remanded to the Belize Central Prison until December 16, 2015.

St. Catherine Academy and St. John’s College repeats as Central Region Secondary Schools Volleyball champions
The 2015-2016 Central Region Secondary Schools Volleyball competition came to an end on Wednesday 28 October, 2015, with the second and final game in the best of three championship series. In the female championship game, defending champions and the competition’s favourite St. Catherine Academy captured its 20th Consecutive Central Region Secondary Schools Volleyball championship when it defeated Belize High School in four sets by the score of 25-26, 23-25, 25-9 and 25-15. In the male championship, it was St. John’s College that captured yet another school title when it defeated Belize High School in four sets by the score of 21-25, 25-18, 25-13 and 25-15. On Monday 26 October, 2015, in the first game of the female championship series, St. Catherine Academy defeated Belize High School quite handily in three sets by the score of 25-17, 25-17 and 25-10.

Breaking Belize NewsPJ

Two men charged with 13 counts of possession of false documents
Mark Rosales and Marcos Basto, two residents of San Pedro, Corozal, who allegedly had false Belizean certificates of registration, were charged with 13 counts of possession of false documents when they appeared today before Magistrate Deborah Rogers. They pled not guilty to the charges. Magistrate Rogers explained to […]

Prime Minister Barrow is sworn in
Re-elected Prime Minister Hon. Dean Oliver Barrow was sworn in this afternoon by his Excellency Governor General Sir Colville Young. During a press conference earlier today, Prime Minister Barrow informed that he will begin the process of selecting his third Cabinet. With 19 confirmed seats in the House of Representatives, […]

Police charge man for Election Day shooting in Belize City
22 year old Trevor Yarde, Junior, was one of two victims of violence on election day, after he was shot and injured on Freetown Road. Details are scarce but police have made a quick arrest. Malcolm Jamal Myers is charged with attempted murder, use of deadly means of harm and […]

Election results
The Elections and Boundaries Department has released its preliminary results following yesterday’s General Elections, which showed that the United Democratic Party (UDP) secured 19 seats, forming government for the third consecutive term and making history, while the People’s United Party (PUP) secured 11 seats and the Belize Progressive […]

PUP to select new leader as Fonseca steps down
While not doing so right away, leader of the People’s United Party (PUP) Francis Fonseca intends to step aside following a fourth consecutive election loss this year, and second election in his four year tenure. Fonseca told reporters the party would now organize a special convention to elect it’s […]

Relatively moist and unstable conditions supporting showery weather over some areas
The National Meteorological Service of Belize is predicting cloudy skies with sunny breaks today and cloudy skies at times tonight. Some showers or thunderstorms will affect mainly the coast this morning, then mostly northern districts this afternoon, with showers decreasing somewhat tonight. Winds will be blowing from the East-Northeast at 5-15 […]

PM addresses press, recommits to working for Belize
A victorious Dean Barrow will be sworn in this afternoon in Belmopan for his third and likely final term in the post but first he addressed the press and party supporters in Belize City this morning. With 19 confirmed seats and a possible 20th still in dispute, the returning Prime […]

Belize: Post Election View, From Under The Bus
Belize held its 8th general elections after Independence yesterday. For the first time since Independence in 1981, a party and prime minister has won three general elections in a row. Prime Minister Dean Barrow and his United Democratic Party (UDP) has gained ground, winning at least 19 of […]


My Election Day in Belize: A Bit of Rain and a UDP Victory
Yesterday, in a drive through town at about 2:30pm, JUST before some rain started to fall…I took some photos of the proceedings. Many were voting, many were gathered but things were rather low key… Here is what I saw. NB: I can not vote. I have been able to apply for citizenship for a few years now and NEED TO GET ON THAT! I was pretty bent out of shape yesterday that I couldn’t…but it’s my own fault. I, instead, congratulated everyone with a purple finger. And I saw lots of them. Even the toll booth at the bridge was closed for elections. Free passage to the polls.

The expate life: Coping with the revolving door of ‘forever friends’
If you are living the expate life, you’ve all been there: Those friends you made for life just announced plans to move to yet another country or back home and, well, it has been terrific. Good bye. Sure, there is always Facebook. But, seriously. That hurts, more than a little. Jerry Jones knows about the little hurts of the comings and goings in Expatland. (I’m not talking about the Jerry Jones of the 2-5 Dallas Cowboys. That is a whole other person and a whole other pain, if you are a Cowboy fan.) Jones lived in China for seven years where he helped bewildered expats navigate the often perplexing culture. Now he does the same from the states. He is a culture transition coach. On his blog, The Culture Blend, Jones has just written about that part of the expat life that you rarely hear about before making your big move — the revolving door of friends and community that can keep you off balance if you don’t quickly ground yourself. “It is a big painful part of the expat experience though,” writes Jones. “Transition that is. Not the expected ones like ‘culture shock,’ bumbling language mistakes and system conversions. We saw those coming from a mile away (1.60934 kilometers). We read books and blogs about those. Some of us even went to seminars and conferences about how to ‘transition well.’ ”

Poppy Appeal Dinner at El Fogon
The Royal British Legion (RBL) is an organization that provides financial, social and emotional support to members and veterans of the British Armed Forces, their families and dependents. They are committed to helping everyone understand the importance of remembrance so that sacrifices are never forgotten. Because of their great commitment, The Poppy Appeal Campaign helps raise money to provide thousands of veterans and their families with vital support. In San Pedro, The Royal British Legion is most greatly represented by the efforts and contributions of Jim and Jamila Janmohamed. They are both outstanding individuals in the community and, fortunately for us, Jamila is a phenomenal cook, as well! Jim and Jamila were holding their annual Poppy Appeal Dinner at El Fogon and we couldn’t be more keen on this event when we heard about it. We called to reserve our tickets, hopped in the golf cart and headed out to retrieve our golden tickets. The $100BZ contribution entitled each ticket holder to a four course Indian meal prepared by Jamila herself! If you don’t like Indian food, I feel sorry for you, but this was very exciting to us. Let me quickly mention that in the 5-6 years we have been coming down to San Pedro, we have never been to El Fogon Restaurant. Not because we haven’t heard wonderful things about it and the fantastic local food represented within it’s walls. It’s because of this one word – gibnut. You can read about the gibnut here. Trust me……..I will eventually give it a shot. I just have to get myself psyched up for that “special” day.

To “Mexico” from San Pedro,Ambergris Caye, Belize.
What to do on National Election Day in Belize? That was the burning question for me as Wednesday 4 November drew ever closer. Well I’d obviously – as a member of the British Commonwealth – be voting. I’m proud to have the priviledge of being able to vote in this wonderful country that has allowed us to call it our home and I was damned sure that I would be exercising it. But that would only take 15 to 20 minutes. What else would I fill the day with? Estel’s Dine By the Sea, with its decision not to open on National Election Day, had deprived me (I forgive you though Charles) of one of my ‘look forward to’ sections of the day. So, after casting my vote I could of course return home, have breakfast and then resume battle with the weeds in our garden. That could easily see me through until the kick-off time of the away leg of Arsenal’s Champions League game against Bayern Munich. Actually it could probably see me through until the end of the football season!

Fried Rice
1. Prepare 4 cups of cooked rice according to package instructions 2. Heat sesame oil in a large skillet on medium heat. 3. Add onion, garlic, peas, corn, shallots, and carrots. Stir fry until tender. 4. Crack eggs into pan and scramble, mixing throughout vegetables. 5. Add rice, chicken, prawns & bacon to pan. 6. Stir in soy sauce and remove from heat. Tip: you can also add thinly sliced beef strips Water Chestnuts Bean Shoots Baby Corn Snow Peas

Packed House, Sunset Smiles and tasty Enchiladas
It has been a busy food week so far. First off was the 5th annual re-opening of Casa Picasso; one of the most anticipated food events of the year. I got there a bit later than I wanted to and it was slam packed. Thankfully Lori and Leisa had secured a good spot outside. It felt like there were easily a couple hundred people there and according to their Facebook page, Chef Jeff and his crew sent out over 1200 appetizers throughout the night. It’s no surprise that not a morsel of food was left. The Bar was extremely busy all night long serving up their specialty cocktails. Funny moment of the night – Leisa decided to text Cowboy Doug to go get us a round of drinks. She could hear him and thought he was inside, closer to the bar. Not long after the crowd cleared a bit, she realized he was sitting outside at a table less than a stone’s throw behind us – it was that packed. Lori and I made an executive decision to brave the inside crowd and swim upstream for drinks 😀 She got served first as she and Leisa had regular cocktails. Since I was getting special order, I had to line up for Jason so he could make me a virgin cucumber cocktail – it was very yummy.

Ghosts in the machine (well, it is an iPod)
Did you ever scan through your digital photo library and stop on an image to wonder “How the hell did that get in there?” And I’m not talking about naked selfies. I’m referring to “ghosts.” Images that bear no relationship to the ones before, nor the ones that follow. For example, suppose you just took 12 photos of a snowy egret in a lovely, colorful, natural setting. And there — right there! — in Frame #7 is a strange . . . well . . . what the heck is that anyway? You don’t know, so you hit delete. End of story. I’m speaking hypothetically, of course. With me, it is never the end of the story, but the beginning.

International Sourcesizz

Top 10 Holiday Trips To Book Now, According To Kayak
Airfare is cheaper this year than last, and will only continue to drop through January 2016. So why aren't you booking a trip to somewhere right this second? Maybe you're not sure where to visit. Well, according to travel booking site Kayak, there are some key destinations around the world where airfare is especially less expensive right now. To gather the list, Kayak's Holiday Travel Hacker pulled together the destinations with the biggest decrease in median airfare this holiday season vs. last holiday season. Though the escapes featured below might not be considered "budget" locations, savvy travelers will consider this holiday season one of the best times to finally book tickets for that once-in-a-lifetime trip. Belize: Enjoy the beaches and explore Mayan ruins with airfare that's 20 percent less expensive this year.

NAU students dig into history and conserve archaeological sites in Belize
Northern Arizona University students are credited with preserving archaeological sites in Belize and supporting that country’s economy, where one in four jobs is related to tourism. Eight undergraduates and two graduate students spent the summer months in Belize doing excavations, which included a structure at Xunantuknich, an ancient Maya site near the Guatemala border. “This work not only conserves cultural heritage, but it also creates jobs, contributes to national identity and is educational,” said Jaime Awe, an assistant professor of archaeology. In addition to the archaeological tenets of excavation, students learned about preservation. Maya built with lime plaster, a combination of sand, water and lime, which deteriorates when exposed to rain and algae.

OAS mission highlights civic spirit in Belize general elections
The electoral mission of the Organization of American States (EOM/OAS) that observed the general elections in Belize on Wednesday noted the civic spirit of the people of the country shown in a peaceful and successful election day. The mission congratulated the country on the vote, in which 71 percent of registered voters cast their ballots. The EOM/OAS recommended a re-registration of voters, and adjustments to electoral boundaries, among other issues. In a preliminary report, the chief of mission, Jacinth Henry-Martin, on Thursday noted the preparations made by the country’s electoral authorities ahead of the election that led to “a generally inclusive and clean electoral process.”

Man has parasite removed from under his skin after holiday to Belize
Michael Fussell from Baltimore, knew something wasn’t right when he returned home from his holiday with a growing bulge under his skin. What he didn’t know, was that it was caused by a parasite that had made a home in his flesh. A trip to the doctor revealed that it was in fact a botfly, which was causing the swelling. Mr Fussell had to have the a small incision made in his skin so that the slimy little creature could be removed as soon as possible. Warning, the result footage is not for the faint-hearted.

#508903 - 11/06/15 06:01 AM Re: Today's Belize News: November 6, 2015 [Re: Marty]
Marty Offline

Industry experts 'optimistic' about Caribbean technology development
Regional Internet and technology experts remain upbeat on the future of the industry in the Caribbean. A recent industry report showed that Internet connectivity in the Caribbean is growing at sluggish speeds, with high rates. However, shifting attitudes within the region’s technical community are triggering positive change in its technology landscape. Among the challenges faced by the region in developing its technology sector are outdated legislation, limited access to capital, and an environment not always conducive to the development of indigenous technology businesses and services. But some experts say that the region is well positioned to seize fresh opportunities to improve its Internet access penetration, to reduce Internet service costs and to increase network service quality.

Coldstream Guards Learn How To Stay Alive In The Jungle
Around 400 soldiers from 1st Battalion the Coldstream Guards (1CG) have swapped their ceremonial duties to test their jungle warfare skills in Belize. 1CG have been working and training together on Exercise Mayan Warrior, named after the ancient Mayan people and culture that previously inhabited the region. The Guards have been deployed deep in the heart of Belize’s rainforest, learning how to fight in the jungle, and perhaps more importantly, how to navigate and survive amidst the dangers that lay beneath the canopies. They're also learning how to make booby traps, attack or ambush enemy camps and conduct river crossings and operations - with the final phase of training involving live firing.

Marines with the SPMAGTF-SC end successful deployment
The Special Purpose Marine Air-Ground Task Force Southern Command is returning to Marine Corps Base Camp Lejeune after an approximately six-month deployment to Central America. In Belize, the team focused on conducting military-to-military engagements with the Belizean Defence Force and Belizean Coast Guard which included patrolling, infantry tactics, physical training, martial arts, combat lifesaving and joint planning efforts. “My initial reaction to Belize was first noticing how generous all the people were, they were extremely welcoming and they wanted any and everything to do with our military experience,” said Capt. Steven Dally, the officer-in-charge for the SPMAGTF-SC Security Cooperation Team in Belize. Dally went on to say that some of his best moments were training the host nation in weaponry they weren’t familiar with.

In face of 'tax haven' attack, CARICOM must unite
No member state of the Caribbean Community (CARICOM) ranks among the top 20 jurisdictions worldwide for financial secrecy. The United States of America (at number 3), Germany (8), Japan (12) and Britain (15), all rate as bigger tax havens than any CARICOM jurisdiction, according to the Tax Justice Network (TJN), an independent European-based think-tank. Further, the Global Forum on Transparency and Exchange of Information for Tax purposes rates the US and European Union countries, Britain, Germany, Italy, Netherlands, Greece and Estonia only in the second grade of jurisdictions that are compliant with international standards. This shows how difficult it is for all countries, even those with huge financial and human resources to put in place the raft of legislative, regulatory and enforcement measures necessary to satisfy the international requirements being set by bodies such as the Organisation for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD), the Commission of the European Union (EC) and the Global Forum (GF).


  • Snorkeling with Sharks and Rays in Caye Caulker Belize, 10min. Went on a day long snorkel trip in Caye Caulker. Amazing concentration of large fish in their protected waters.

  • Sea Turtle in San Pedro, Belize Honeymoon October 2015, .5min. One of the highlights of our scuba diving in Belize!

  • Belize 2015, 2min.

  • Janette + Bryan :: Belize Wedding Highlights, 3min. Hill-top Wedding at Belmopan, Belize

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