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#509287 - 11/19/15 06:06 AM Today's Belize News: November 19, 2015
Marty Offline


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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

Agriculture Industry Crisis: Millions lost to virus plagued shrimp
In October of 2015, Fyffes ceased buying products from Mediterranean Enterprises, causing a crash in the banana industry. This resulted in thousands of jobless Belizeans and millions of dollars in losses for one of the strongest income producers of the country, agriculture. Now the industry faces yet another set-back, as the shrimp industry faces a virus plague. Even though the viral infection begun just a few months ago, shrimp farms have already suffered significant losses in product and investment. While the relative parties have been trying to do everything to control the situation, it is unknown how long it will take for the shrimp industry to recuperate; in the meantime workers are being laid-off.

Robert Ramirez wins first Garifuna language translation quiz held in San Pedro
The San Pedro Cultural Committee along with the local National Garifuna Council (NGC) and the Ministry of Education recently organized an enlightening Garifuna Quiz contest on the island. The event took place on Monday, November 16th at the San Pedro RomanCatholic School (SPRCS) and saw the participation of six students from three different primary schools. The contest tested the participants’ knowledge of the Garifuna language, having them translate an English word into Garifuna. Representing La Isla Bonita Elementary School was Robert Ramirez and Aylin Tang, from Ambergris Caye Elementary School was Jasmine Sanchez and Yadi Flores, and representing SPRCS were Latoya Lewis and Alicia Arana. After a series of three rounds, Latoya Lewis took third place, while Jasmine Sanchez and Robert Ramirez remained tied. The tie breaking round was comprised of two questions and based on the Garifuna history rather than translating words. After the contestants deliberated their answers, it was clear to the judges that Ramirez had flawlessly answered his final questions correctly as he did throughout the contest, and he walked away with the first place while Sanchez took second place.

Christine Syme departs to represent Belize at Miss Earth Pageant
On Monday, November 16th, Miss Earth Belize 2015 Christine Syme departed Belize for Vienna, Austria where she will be participating in the 15th Annual Miss Earth Pageant. The 19-year-old beauty is among 92 contestants who will be participating in several events leading up the Miss Earth Pageant scheduled for Saturday, December 5th. Reigning Miss Earth 2014 Jamie Herrell of the Philippines will crown her successor at the end of the event. Syme, who is hoping to charm the judges to win the crown while promoting the need to respect and care for our environment, is happy to represent her country in such a prestigious pageant. Prior to departing, Syme took part in several activities to raise awareness on environmental protection here in the island. Among some of the activities, Syme took part in preparation for the pageant with a photoshoot with Olivera Rusu, a video presentation on the environment, modeling training with Zuzanna Mello and fitness training at the Train Station. Syme also took part in clean-up campaigns and tree planting initiatives.

Miss Garifuna Pageant contestants officially sashed
Four beautiful Garifuna island girls were officially sashed as delegates of the 2015/2016 Miss Garifuna Pageant on Monday, November 16th at the San Pedro House of Culture. At the ceremony, each contestant was presented alongside their sponsors while attendees learned more about the rich Garifuna culture. The event started at 9PM with an introduction of the contestants by Mrs. Julia Martinez who assured everyone that the pageant would be a memorable one. She congratulated the contestants and their courage in vying for the Miss Garifuna Title. According to her, after 18 years, a new Miss Garifuna will be crowned by the means of competition and not by appointment as it has been done all these past years. After the opening remarks, each candidate was presented with their sash by outgoing Miss Garifuna 2014/2015 Tisane Martinez. Following the sashing, the delegates and attendees enjoyed a Jankunu dance performance, which put everyone in the dancing mood. Before the event was done, each sponsor was acknowledge and thanked for their continued support. Special thanks went to the San Pedro House of Culture for hosting the activity and as well to the delegates for participating and making the event a reality.

Ambergris Today

Rare Toucan Bird Sighting in San Pedro, Ambergris Caye

25 Years Ago - Was The San Pedro R C School Haunted?
This photo of our primary School in the village is the second school building. The first was a two storey building at the same location- between the central park and the beach. The two storey building had a lifespan of some twenty years, sometime between the early twenties up until 1942. It was knocked down but not totally destroyed by the hurricane of 1942. Pictured here in the very first building is a teacher’s house and a grass lawn. Imagine a green lawn right on the beach of San Pedro. After the hurricane of 1942 the villagers got together and rebuilt the school into a one storey building with the same walls and windows. This building had a lifespan of 19 years from 1942 to 1961 when it was totally destroyed by the hurricane of 1961, Hurricane Hattie. Now to the story of the ghost school! When we were kids our parent, all the parents of the village, assured the children of the day to keep a distance in the nights because often the ringing of the school bell was heard at nights on very windy days. With that in mind, many children also assured of hearing the peal of the bell, sort like a slight echo. The reason of the ghost under or inside the school building was that a soldier had been brutally stabbed under the building during a brawl.

Belize Tourism Board Awards 9 Scholarships Towards Tourism
On Friday, November 13, the Belize Tourism Board (BTB) awarded nine students with scholarships for Tourism Programs. The scholarships are as follows: Three (3) two-years tuition scholarships for an Associates in Tourism at one of the Junior Colleges in Belize offering a Tourism Program, awarded to 1. Giselle Rodriguez 2. Amina Cal 3. Monique Tucker Three (3) two-years tuition scholarships for a Bachelor Degree in Tourism Management at the University of Belize, awarded to 1. Jewel Williams 2. Alexander Cal 3. Gariesha Teck

Holiday Lighted Boat Parade Cancelled for 2015
On behalf of the San Pedro Business Association and the Holiday Lighted Boat Parade Committee we regret to advise that we have been forced to cancel this year's event that had been scheduled for Saturday, December 05, 2015 at the Central Park. Sadly, due to a few challenges we have been faced with, both financially and because of low participation we were not able to come up with a positive outcome. As a result of these we are canceling this year's event; however our Holiday Lighted Boat Parade's date has been set for next year which will be on Saturday, December 03, 2016. We will start planning as early as mid year 2016 hoping to receive more support. The San Pedro Business Association believes that these events are important for the community and also believe in making a healthier and better society in having these types of events which also benefits the tourism and local community. We apologize again and hope that our decision is taken positively and continue to receive your support. Once again, thank you very much!!

Misc Belizean Sourcesmzz

1st ever Kareem Clarke Memorial
Nov. 21st. Support a good cause and an entertaining event!

NEMO Drills in San Pedro
For the past few years NEMO has been implementing disaster scenarios at schools in our community. They have now taken it to a higher level. Yesterday, we had a surprise fire drill and all entities that would be contacted for the real deal were called in a specific order and dispatched to TIA/Casa Verde. The teachers and students did an excellent job in a situation we had never practiced: they were at recess. Not only does Miss Wilema contact the Fire Department etc. but each building has a leader and a runner. These teachers are responsible for their list of students and their contact numbers, turning on the alarm in their buildings and checking that ALL students are out of the buildings and then they take a roll call. NEMO asked that a child be removed from the group to see if we would indeed know that child was not with us. We knew immediately.

Corozal: 2nd Annual 'Flavours of the Garifuna' cultural event
Today November 19th,Garifuna Settlement Day 2015, the Corozal House of Culture (NICH) presents its 2nd Annual 'Flavours of the Garifuna' cultural event. All are invited to come experience elements of the Garifuna Culture at its best. It all starts at 6:00pm sharp!

James Lindsay British Honduras Collection
Mark your calendars - as the James Lindsay British Honduras Collection opens Monday November 30th. The historical exhibit showcases antiquities, photographs, printed materials and more dating back to the mid 1800's.

Culture Day in San Pedro
A look at Culture Day observed by the students of Ambergris Caye Elementary School.

Congratulations to Purple Passion Beauty Studio on being featured on junebug weddings
I am shock, excited and truly grateful! Next month I will be celebrating 11 years in this industry. This is the best gift that I have received. I am just an island girl that pours my love into what I do. Thanks to all my clients that keep supporting me

Steak Your Claim Garifuna Style
The San Ignacio Resort Hotel is having a special Steak Your Claim grill night in honor of Garifuna Settlement Day. Tonight, from 6:00pm to 9:00pm. They'll have live drumming, and dancing. Happy Garifuna Settlement Day! "Join us this Thursday for our STEAK YOUR CLAIM GARIFUNA SPECIAL for a fusion of Garifuna culture and grilled specialties! For reservations, contact us at 824-2034 or e-mail restaurant@sanignaciobelize.com"


The beauty and the artistic excellence of Garifuna women in dance
Belizean Legends is honored to celebrate the beauty and the artistic excellence of Garifuna women in dance in Central America and the Caribbean in commemoration of Garifuna Settlement Day. The featured photographs showcased two outstanding female dancers from one of the Central American Black Organization (CABO) black summits and conference that was held in Belize at the Bliss Center for the Performing Arts at the National Institute of Culture & History (NICH) in 2012. Spectacularly beautiful!

Garifuna Week in Belize
It's a super busy week here in San Pedro. Tonight is the Miss Garifuna Pageant and tomorrow we celebrate Garifuna Settlement Day. Of course only one of the girls will go on to be Miss Garifuna ... but each one should be super proud for her courage to step up and represent her wonderful culture. Have fun tonight and thank you to each one of you for working so hard to keep the Garifuna culture alive. I am grateful to all of you.

Paradise Theater: Playing this weekend!
Marvel's Ant-Man HEIST Everest Hitman

Channel 7

On The River In The Valley
Last night, we told you about the NEMO Advisory which warned residents of the Belize River Valley Community to be vigilant of the flood waters rolling down from the Cayo District. That flood was caused by the weekend rains which inundated the entire Country. NEMO said that their personnel would be out on the Belize River today along with the BDF. Well, they invited 7News to accompany them, and we went along to see how the rising river was affecting the nearby villages. Daniel Ortiz has that story: NEMO Minister Edmond Castro and his team started their information gathering today with a trip on the Belize River. The intention was to survey and catalogue the interaction of the flood waters rushing down from the Cayo District and to see how the swell of the river was affecting the River Valley Community.

Castro: Captain Nemo, But Not Full Minister
And while Clear the Land Castro is moving around the country on NEMO duties – he does so only as a Minister of State. As we have reported, the three-term representative was again passed over for a full ministry –while every other three-term UDP representative got a full ministry. Today we asked Castro if he was still bruised by being passed over:… Daniel Ortiz "Some observers look and see that you are one of those ministers who should have gotten a full ministry not a minister of state. Do you in any way feel jilted by being appointed to a minister of state?" Hon. Edmond Castro – Minister Of State, Transport and NEMO "Not at all, we must remember that we were all elected as Area Representatives. When we go to the poll, we go to the poll to be elected and ask the people to elect us to represent them. We did not go to the poll to be elected as deputy this or minister of this or minister of that. The people elect us to be their representative. And as long as your goal is to aim to be the best Area Representative, it don't matter where you go, it don't matter what title they give you; because they can give you all the ministries there is and if you are not careful in taking care of the little area that elected you to serve them, then you won't return back to the house."

50 Pounds of Weed "Eena Van Back"
Tonight, taxi driver Walter Beaton and fisherman Kirk Dougal are in jail for drug trafficking after police found over 50 pounds of weed inside a van. In January of this year, that police stopped a dodge Caravan at the western highway checkpoint in Belize City. 41 year old Beaton was driving and 38 year old Dougal was in the passenger seat. They had a large bag stowed behind the back seat with 25.1 kilos or 55.3 pounds of weed stuffed inside. In the trial, both men said they didn’t know the weed was there. Dougal claimed he was only hitching a ride. But senior magistrate Sharon Fraser didn’t buy it. She found them both guilty of drug trafficking with intent to supply to another for the purpose of drug trafficking. Beaton has a prior conviction for harm while Dougal has been to court at least 14 times for drug related offenses.

Cops Shot Wilbert, Did They Need To?
A man was shot by police in his home in Trial Farm village, outside Orange Walk Town yesterday. 47 year old Wilbert Guerra was in his room when the police went looking for him. He was being sought by police for making sexual advances on a young girl. But when the officers tried to detain him it turned into a struggle – which ended up in Guerra being shot by a police revolver. Our colleagues at CTV3 spoke to the father and he told them in Spanish that the officers had no reason to shoot his son. Translated from Spanish to English…. Inocencio Guerra - Father "When I went out, I spoke to the guy who came here in front and he told me that my son told his daughter some bad words, so it stayed like that, now the guy told me that he went to call the police and I said well call the police and take my son. Good. So he left and I came back inside. And then it took about half an hour when the police came in, my son was in that room and so the police came and I invited them in. So they asked me where my son is and I told them he was in the room. Then they told me to call him and so I went and told my son “Boy the police came to look for you “.

Police Will Charge Driver
A man was knocked down last night on the Western Highway near mile 4. The driver Jamal Bennett told police that he knocked down a cyclist when he was blinded by approaching headlights:… Sr. Supt Chester Williams - Commander, Eastern Division Southside "One Jamal Bennett was the driver of a car when he knocked down one Elsworth Lamb who was riding a bicycle; they were both going in the same direction and apparently based on what Mr. Bennett was saying that a vehicle was coming in the opposite direction with high beam and he could have not seen, so he pulled off on the side of the road and unfortunately there was this man riding in front of him and he didn't see the person due to the fact that his vision was blurred by the oncoming vehicle. He knocked down the cyclist and that person is currently admitted in the KHMH in a stable condition. He received a large cut wound to the left side of his head but he is in a conscious state, he's responding and we believe that we he will be released from the hospital very shortly."

Southside Commander Says Police Making Progress in PIV Territory
We meet the south side commander when he was touring the St. Martins Area on Oleander Street. That’s the heart of PIV Territory – and has been a site of chronic violence. But, it’s cooled down a lot in the last five months and that can be correlated to the new community-based policing model adopted by Williams. It’s the second time he and his community police have been in the area – and he says they went back asking the community to report on how the police have been responding to their needs:… Sr. Supt Chester Williams - Commander, Eastern Division Southside "Yes it is a PIV area it is known as banks area but I want it to be made clear that every area is Belize City is the police area. We are no longer tolerating any turf per se but we try to see how best we can work with the different people in different areas to see how we could have some semblance of peace within the community." "When we come the last time complaints were made to us about police attitude and behaviour. We have dealt with those complaints so we're now coming back to the community to see if those complaints persist and in the same process we are again getting their views and their ideas and how best they can assist us with information to be able to better police their area."

City Crime On A Sustained Downswing
And that greater sense of legitimacy could be contributing to the unusual and very welcome sense of calm on the Southside. Knock on wood, we haven’t reported on a murder in the city for just over a month now – and Williams says it is most pronounced on the Southside:.. Sr. Supt Chester Williams - Commander, Eastern Division Southside "I have looked at the statistics going back years and we have never had a complete month where there was no murder on Southside Belize City until September. Since the 2 murders we have in October which was in the 2nd week of October we have not have another murder on Southside Belize City again for over a month now again. Even though we're still waiting to see what the end of November will bring, I am also pleased to report to you all that precinct 2 area which we are currently, we have not had a murder in precinct 2 for over 2 months, going to 3 months now.

Cops Get Wingles
Assisting in that crime suppression are two more vehicles for the Southside. It’s part of the ten that the police headquarters in Belmopan received in the first week of November and Williams says it’s almost enough to put his formation halfway to where it needs to be:… Sr. Supt Chester Williams - Commander, Eastern Division Southside "We received 2 additional vehicles, one assigned to precinct 1 and one assigned to precinct 2, so we continue to build on our fleet; we are not where we want to be. We have applied to the US embassy through the CARSI programme for 10 vehicles and as I have said before in order for us to effectively police outside we would want to police it, we need 10 vehicles. Currently we are half way there, we have 5. Of the 5, 3 are not in good working condition but we try to do our best with them.

70 Year Old Sexually Assaulted On San Pedro
A 70-year-old housewife was sexually assaulted on San Pedro on Monday night. She told police that on Monday night at 9:30, she was on Coco Plum street heading home when a man on bicycle attacked her. He dragged her into an overgrown, empty lot and punched her variously on the face and legs. She was knocked unconscious and woke up some time after to find her blouse torn, and underwear pulled down. Police have not made any arrests.

GIS Is The Future
World GIS Day was observed in Belize today - and Total Business Solutions had its 4th annual expo to make the technology behind GIS more accessible, especially to students. Organizer Loretta Palacio explains that GIS incorporates real world, everyday applications that are making a difference in society: The EXPO featured booths from BEL, BTL, the Sugar Industry Research & Development Institute, the Belize MetService, University of Belize, and The Amandala Newspaper.

Looking Back To 'Griga 2014
Tomorrow is Garifuna settlement day – and all roads lead, of course, to the culture capital Dangriga. And the day in Dangriga and throughout southern Belize begins with the re-enactment of the arrival that is called Yurumein. Last year, Courtney Weatherburne captured it in Dangriga, and tonight, as a primer for tomorrow, we reprise that story:…

Channel 5

Flooding Affects 8-Mile Community
The southern part of Belize was the most affected over the past weekend when heavy rains came down. Roads and other infrastructure were submerged under water and became passable when [...]

Elderly Woman Brutally Beaten and Sexually Assaulted
San Pedro Police are currently investigating a particularly heinous crime on the island and are seeking one man who they believe is still on the island. It is believed that [...]

Still No Charges for Choc Murder
On Tuesday afternoon, a post mortem exam was conducted on the body of sixteen year old Ivan Choc, who was heartlessly killed in front of his parents and siblings inside [...]

Nina Perez Still in Human Services Custody…Mother Begs for Compassion
Two-year-old Nina Charlotte Barrera-Perez was removed from her home in Orange Walk Town and taken into protective custody by the Human Services Department five days ago, last Friday. To date [...]

Southside Murders Down Significantly
The Southside of Belize City, knock on wood, is calm. In fact, we’d go so far as to say that there is unprecedented calm where violent crimes are concerned. Here’s [...]

Police Need More Vehicles to Patrol Southside
While the decrease in crime is significant and welcome, Williams says that if the police had the resources they needed, they would be able to do much more. Lack of [...]

Fathers Behind Bars for Drug Trafficking
Tonight, two Belize City fathers who are sole providers of their children are behind bars after both were convicted of drug trafficking. Two years ago in May 2013, Walter Beaten [...]

Liberty of the Seas to Visit Belize
The scheduled arrival of the Liberty of the Seas, a Freedom-class family vessel, at the peak of the 2015 tourist season, should see the landing of approximately three thousand, six [...]

Cruise Arrivals to Increase in Next Few Months…
While figures for this tourist season are on target in respect of cruise arrivals, an increase is expected in the months ahead.  With the addition of several European lines, it [...]

…Focus Remains on Visitor Experience
The launch of the Harvest Caye terminal will see a vacuum being filled in Belize City, as Norwegian will be taking its ships south.  According to Andrade, while a new [...]

Police Meet & Greet in the Martin’s
Today, the Police continued their meet and greet efforts, just one of several initiatives which they say are reaping real benefits. We caught up with officers speaking to residents on [...]

4th Annual GIS Expo Hosted in Belize
Across the globe, today is celebrated as World GIS Day and in Belize, following a symposium at the University of Belize last Friday; Total Business Solutions Limited hosted the fourth [...]

Traditional Activities Planned for Garifuna Settlement Day
On the eve of Garifuna Settlement Day, final preparations are being made by the branches of the National Garifuna Council for the traditional reenactment of the arrival of the Garinagu [...]

The Day Represents a Reflection on the Garifuna Culture
Following the mass, a parade will leave from the St. Martin De Porres Church travel contrary to traffic on Vernon Street turn into Youth for the Future Drive over the [...]


Elderly Woman Assaulted on Ambergris Caye
An elderly woman of San Pedro, Ambergris Caye, is recuperating from a harrowing experience she went through earlier this week. The 70-year-old, woman told police that she was on her way home at around nine thirty on Monday night when a man on a bicycle approached her and dragged her into an empty overgrown lot […]

PUP’s Deputy Will Not Seek Re-Election
As for Sandiford and her role as the Deputy Party Leader, she says she will not be seeking re-election come January 2016. CAROLYN TRENCH SANDIFORD “In terms of my post, no. I in fact I wrote myself out of the new structure because I do believe the trust of the party at this point is […]

PUP’s Sec Gen to Leave Secretariat
Reports are circulating that the Secretary General of the People’s United Party is resigning. Myrtle Palacio was brought in by Party Leader, Francis Fonseca and has been operating in that capacity since 2011. Love News asked the PUP’s Deputy Party Leader, Carolyn Trench Sandiford, if Palacio is leaving. CAROLYN TRENCH SANDIFORD “I have not received […]

Dr Jorge Hidalgo Dubbed Master of Critical Care Medicine by SCCM Council
Doctor Jorge Hidalgo has been practicing medicine in Belize for some years now and currently in an Internist at the Belize Healthcare Partners in Belize City. While Hidalgo has achieved several awards and recognition, he now has another achievement to add to his list. Earlier this month, Dr Hidalgo received a letter from the Council […]

Corozal Gets Head Start In 16 Days of Activism
Yesterday we told of the up and coming annual 16 days of activism in Belize that focuses on gender based violence and gender equality. While the program is not set to start until next Wednesday, La Escuela Secundaria Técnico de Mexico in San Roman Village, Corozal District got an early start today as a discussion […]


Belize Celebrates Garifuna Settlement Day for the 74th Year
History recalls that in 1832, a group of Garinagu people were led to Belize by a charismatic and ambitious Alejo Beni. In 1941, thanks to the well celebrated Thomas Vincent Ramos, Garifuna Settlement Day would become a public and bank Holiday and the historic arrival of the Garinagu to Belize would...

CARILED Helps Belize
CARILED, through whom the Federation of Canadian Municipalities (FCM) channels their resources to aid countries in the Caribbean with their local economic development plan, including Belize, met today at the YWCA in Belmopan with members of the Belmopan City Council. On the table for discussion was ...

BWS and Workers sign new CBA
This morning representatives of Belize Water Services Limited (BWS) and the Belize Water Services Workers Union (BWSWU) signed a new collective bargaining agreement before Labour Commissioner, Ivan Williams. The joint press release is short on details of the agreement but says it is retroactive to N...

Men sentenced for trafficking 50 pounds of weed
In the Magistrate’s Court today, two Belize City men were condemned to a heavy fine and prison time for trafficking over fifty pounds of cannabis found inside a Dodge Caravan at the police George Price Highway checkpoint at Mile 4 on May 11, 2013, two years ago. Senior Magistrate Sharon Frazer found...

Dennis Talbert denies unlicensed gun is his
Tonight, 24 year old Dennis Arthur Talbert Junior is on remand at the Belize Central Prison after accused of keeping an unlicensed firearm and 2 live rounds of ammunitions for a .38 COLT brand firearm. Late this evening, Talbert Junior was taken before Magistrate Deborah Rogers and pleaded not guilt...

Police in San Pedro investigate reported rape
A 70 year old housewife of San Pedro Town was reportedly raped. The senior citizen visited the San Pedro Police Station and reported that on Monday, 16th November, at around 9:30 p.m., she was heading home alone when a male person attacked her. She said that the male individual was riding a bicycle...

Where is the 12th Senator?
We’ve heard a lot over the past few years about the 13th Senator that was promised by Prime Minister Dean Barrow. However, that never came to fruition after his “change of heart” on the issue; but what about the 12th senator? Last Friday, only 11 senators were sworn in at the inaugural Senate Meetin...

Flood waters continue to recede
Families living in flood prone areas of the country are finally seeing a rays of hope as the skies begin to clear following incessant rains over the weekend which flooded several communities. Our camera crew travelled down south yesterday to take some footage of the devastation that was experienced ...

Mayan leader says Uxbenka continues to be destroyed
We last left the matter of the Santa Cruz Maya and their efforts to enforce the law against black resident Rupert Myles who had bulldozed part of the Uxbenka Maya ruin to build a pathway to the house in the village where the Institute of Archaeology (IOA) had announced plans to evict Myles and crimi...

Battle for Custody of Baby Nina
Social Media can be a viscous place where all sorts of personal attacks and private matters are publicly spewed. One social worker and her family had an ugly experience with just how vile it can become on Facebook. This is after the social worker was accused of kidnapping a 2 year old from Orange Wa...

Gang member arrested for gun possession
A known gang member was apprehended on Tuesday last week. According to reports, at around 5 a.m. on Tuesday November 11th , the gang suppression unit conducted a house search for illegal firearm and ammunition at the residence of one Dennis Arthur Talbert Jr. in Belize City. Authorities say that the...

Maya back in court over GOB delay
They won a major victory in the Caribbean Court of Justice earlier this year when the Government conceded that they have special customary rights over the land in and surrounding their villages in the Toledo District. But while GOB has consented to help the Maya define and enforce those rights throu...

Fatal hit and run on Southern Highway
Police are seeking one man whom they believe was involved in a fatal hit and run incident which claimed the life of one Carlota Contreras on Friday evening. According to police reports, sometime around 5:30 pm on Friday last week, police responded to a road traffic accident between miles 23 and 24 o...

#509288 - 11/19/15 06:06 AM Re: Today's Belize News: November 19, 2015 [Re: Marty]
Marty Offline


CCJ scolds GOB
The Toledo Maya, who are spread across 38 villages, have been waging a protracted legal battle for recognition, by the Government of Belize, of their customary land rights, which have been violated, according to a ruling last month by Belize’s highest court, the Caribbean Court of Justice (CCJ). This morning, the disputing parties reappeared before the CCJ via teleconference from the Belize Supreme Court with the CCJ justices sitting in Port of Spain, Trinidad, where the CCJ is headquartered. The Maya Leaders Alliance, represented by the first practicing Maya attorney, Monica Coc-Magnusson, filed an application against the Government of Belize, represented by Denys Barrow, SC, alleging that the government has done nothing since the consent order of April 2015, which sets out a clear mandate for a mechanism to give effect to Maya customary land tenure. At the end of today’s hearing, Barrow said that he would submit a report on the progress of the implementation of the consent order before January 21, 2016. The court then declared that the undertaking will be treated as an equivalent to an order of the court.

Lord’s Bank man, 31, gets 2 years for sexual assault of minor, 9
A Lords Bank resident who is also a single father of two children will be spending two years in prison after being found guilty this morning of sexual assault upon a minor. At the end of his trial today, Senior Magistrate Sharon Fraser found Lionel Quiroz, 31, guilty of sexually assaulting a 9-year-old girl. On November 8, 2014, the child alleged that she was heading to her home in Lords Bank when Quiroz met her in the vicinity of the basketball court. The child told the court in her en camera testimony that Quiroz hugged her and then fondled her buttocks. Quiroz, however, in his defense told the court that the child could not have been referring to him, because on the day of the incident, he was not even in Lords Bank, so it couldn’t have been he who fondled the child. Quiroz insisted that he was in Biscayne at the time.

Boy,16, executed in front of parents
Two masked gunmen went into a house in Camalote about 8:00 Friday night, November 13, and one of them shot a teenage boy to death in front of his parents. Police say that when they went to investigate reports of a shooting in Young Bank Road, Camalote, at the home of Eluterio Choc, 35, they saw the lifeless body of Choc’s son, Ivan Choc, 16, lying face up in a pool of blood in the house, with gunshot wounds in the upper right side of the head, the middle of the right forearm, the right leg and right knee. Choc told police that he had just arrived home from work on Friday evening when his son asked him to go and buy fried chicken. He did so, and while they were eating the food in the house, they heard a knock on the door and when he went to open the door, two armed, masked men pushed their way into the house. One of the men pointed a 9mm pistol at them, while the other man, who was armed with a pump-action shotgun, stood in front of his son and stared at him, and his son began to plead for his life, begging the man not to kill him. The devastated father reported that the gunman then raised his gun and fired a blast at his son, hitting him in the arm and leg.

Guatemalan court orders Guat baby taken from Belize mother
Based on information from “Guatemalan central authorities,” Judith Alpuche, CEO in the Ministry of Human Development, says her department moved in on 22-year-old Analiz Perez Gutierrez and removed her 2-year-old child from her custody. Gutierrez said that she had been napping with her daughter at her Orange Walk residence on Friday, November 13, when a woman, accompanied by a uniformed male police officer, informed her that she was a social worker authorized to immediately take the child into custody, based on a ruling in a Guatemalan Court, which granted custody of the child to her biological father, a Guatemalan national. According to Gutierrez, the woman stated that the Office of Human Development, had been ordered by the Guatemalan Embassy in Belize to locate the child and remove her from her mother’s custody.

Shrimp industry suffers $30 mil loss from bacterial disease
Reports are indicating that the shrimp industry has suffered severe losses due to a bacteria known as “libya para humitas” that has somehow found its way into the ponds of the shrimp farms countrywide and killed large amounts of shrimp. Alvin Henderson, president of the Shrimp Growers Association, said that the bacteria was first discovered in March of this year and by June it had infected most of the shrimp farms. Henderson said that there was very little they could have done to prevent the disease, which may have come from one of the neighboring Central American countries such as Mexico, Guatemala, or Honduras, where the bacteria have been known to affect their shrimp farms. The Caribbean Shrimp Ltd. in Ladyville, which has been in operations since 1986 and is owned by Charles McIntosh, is the only shrimp farm that has not been affected by the disease. McIntosh told Amandala that he cannot say why his farm was not affected, but he did say that they grow their shrimp organically and don’t have as high a stocking density as a lot of the bigger farms.

Rained out PLB games pushed forward to this weekend
Premier League of Belize (PLB) Manager Wilhelm Miguel informed us today that all the games cancelled due to rainy weather over the past weekend, will be played this coming weekend, pushing back the schedule by another week. However, the 18th night scheduled back match between Placencia Assassins and Verdes FC remains as scheduled. (No date has yet been announced for the Bandits vs Verdes back mach.) There had been some rumors over the weekend that the BDF vs Police United game would have been played at the MCC on Sunday, but those rumors have been dispelled. “No way will anybody get us to play at the MCC in its present condition,” asserted Police United’s “five star general” Aaron “Gambis” Gamboa on Krem’s Press Cadogan sports show on Sunday morning. That match will still be the most important one this weekend, as BDF absolutely needs a victory to keep their playoff hopes alive. (See standings below. Only 4 teams will qualify to the playoffs.)

Understanding Belize’s venture at UNCAF Women U-17 Qualifiers in Honduras
A couple weeks ago on November 3, the FFB (Football Federation of Belize) released the names of 18 young female football players who would represent Belize “in U-17 Women’s World Cup Elimination Tournament to be held in Comayagua, Honduras from November 11th to 13th.” The tournament is over, and a familiar script has been played, where Belize athletes gained “exposure” on the international stage. It was an embarrassment, really; and one has to wonder if the exercise has done any good to inspire the development of the game among our young female athletes at home. The Central American (UNCAF) Group B originally consisted of four entries, host Honduras along with Costa Rica, Belize and Panama; but Panama earlier withdrew from the tournament, leaving Honduras, Costa Rica and Belize. In retrospect, it raises the question if Belize should also have passed on this tournament, and concentrated more on development of our team for a better future representation.

Editorial: Celebrating the Garinagu
“This book is about the Garifuna, more commonly known in the anthropological literature as Black Caribs, a people who presently inhabit the Atlantic littoral of Central America from Belize to Nicaragua; there are also clusters of Garifuna in several Central American cities and in the United States.” “I was immediately faced with the analytic problem of how to define the time and space boundaries of the sociocultural group with which I was dealing. When had they, in fact, become a distinct people? It was known that their ancestors had lived on the island of St. Vincent in the Lesser Antilles and that their language was closely related to those still spoken among Amerindians in Amazonia. But the blackness of their skin belied the notion that they had no roots in Africa, even though neither their own folklore nor scientific analysis (before 1975) had provided any concrete evidence of that. Should the possibility of an African past be ignored or downplayed, as they themselves preferred in the 1950s? Most anthropologists chose to do that until very recently, even though the empirical evidence caused us to hedge some of the time.

From the Publisher
A couple of the candidates seeking to represent the Republican Party in next year’s United States’ presidential election are the children of Cuban exiles. These are Marco Rubio and Ted Cruz. In Florida, where most of the Cuban exile families reside, Cubans who left the island after the victory of the Fidel Castro-led revolution on New Year’s Day of 1959, and their children and grandchildren, are known to be among the most right wing, neoliberal, and militaristic of American citizens. If you examine the Cuban exile population, you will also see that almost all of them are white, or appear to be white. Yet, half of the Cuban people were black or brown when Fidel came to power. Almost all Cubans of color remained in Cuba after the Cuban Revolution. Racism had been terrible in pre-Castro Cuba, and the Cuban Revolution has not been able to eradicate the legacy of centuries of slavery, but things became substantially better for the masses of black Cubans after the Revolution. That is why they prefer to remain on the island.

“Ointment” from Pastor Stirm
Dear Editor, I wish to make a correction to the article run in this last Sunday’s newspaper about the BAEC. In it you reported that an executive leader from Belize City “leaked” information, which was absolutely not correct. That executive of the Belize City chapter attended the National Executive meeting on October 2 in an official capacity, sitting in for Pastor Longsworth, who did not attend the meeting. With all due respect to the truth and the leaders of BAEC Belize City, his presence was official, and his report was official, not “leaked,” which carries a negative, disloyal connotation. Just a little ointment on the chafe… Thanks for your work…

Alfonso C remembers a Garcia Marquez story
Dear Editor, I read with much interest the first part of a true saga from the book “Lost at Sea,” published in Amandala’s Nov. 15th issue. This story again proves man’s endurance and capacity to survive! This story also took me back to Nobel Prize-winning author, Gabriel Garcia Marquez’s book , “Relato de un Naufrago” (Story of a castaway). In 1955 a Colombian navy vessel was returning from Mobile, Alabama after undergoing repairs. The vessel’s deck was overloaded with all types of appliances (contraband) being brought back by the crew to Colombia. Still hours away from home, the vessel listed and eight men and all the cargo were thrown into the Caribbean Sea. All but one of the eight crew perished. That one sailor survived in a raft and washed up on the shores of Colombia. Gabriel Garcia Marquez was a young man working as a reporter at the newspaper “El Expectador” de Bogota, when the lone survivor showed up and offered to sell his story to the newspaper. Garcia was given the job to interview the sailor, and the daily newspaper published the story over a two week span. Gabriel remembers that the newspaper’s circulation quadrupled! It is with much anticipation that I await the next issue of Amandala!

New entrepreneurship program seeks businesswomen
Twelve Caribbean countries, including Belize, are about to launch a new peer mentoring program which organizers say is intended to fast-track women entrepreneurs in the region and to scale-up their business. The infoDev certified facilitator, Danalyn Myvett, Belize Ambassador for Women’s Entrepreneurship Day, said that one of her portfolio responsibilities is to create and deliver a signature event where women in business come together. She plans to host a LeadHerShip Conference on November 25, 2015 at the Belize Biltmore Plaza. Myvette is promoting a new peer mentoring program, aimed at fast-tracking women entrepreneurs in the Caribbean. She is seeking 10 to 15 women entrepreneurs in Belize who have been in business for at least a few years, to engage in the program here. The call for applications closes next Friday, November 27, 2015. “It’s an exciting program. Don’t miss out!” she said.

12th National Assembly inaugurated, as Barrow commences historic 3rd term
Having been suspended with the announcement of early elections, the National Assembly has not met since September; but today, the recently elected parliamentarians, plus those appointees who will make up the Senate, converged for a ceremonial sitting of the 12th National Assembly in Belmopan. Governor-General Sir Colville Young said: “While it marks the 5th administration of the United Democratic Party, it is also the 1st time in post-independent Belize that a political party has been elected to 3 consecutive terms in office.” “The party banners are being lowered and the poster colors of red and blue and green will soon fade. And as we put away the paraphernalia of one ‘P,’ it is time to embrace that other ‘P.’ The ‘P’ we should value most: the “P” that stands for the people,” said the country’s first third-term Prime Minister, Dean Barrow. Barrow pledged that his administration will address issues such as jobs, education, health, and infrastructure.

Cleyon Marage, 11, bravely battling leukemia
While nationwide, many are gearing up for the November 19 celebrations, for some, celebrating is the furthest thing from their minds. Such is the case with Clovis Matura, 28, who has been a champion for her son, Cleyon Marage, 11, a leukemia patient diagnosed in April of 2014. We first told you about the pair in September of last year, shortly after Cleyon had been diagnosed with Acute Myeloid Leukemia, also known as AML. AML is a cancer of the myeloid line of blood cells, characterized by the rapid growth of abnormal white blood cells that accumulate in the bone marrow and interfere with the production of normal blood cells. Symptoms are caused by replacement of normal bone marrow with leukemic cells, which cause a drop in red blood cells, platelets and normal white blood cells.

Energy Expo at the Biltmore
The Ministry of Energy, Science & Technology and Public Utilities (MESTPU) hosted an Energy Expo at the Belize Biltmore Plaza as a part of the CARICOM Energy Week which is being observed from November 8 to November 14, 2015 under the theme “Empowering Our Sustainable Development.” Ryan Cobb of the Ministry of Energy, Science & Technology and Public Utilities said that the expo is to create awareness and educate the public about the energy sector and how Belize as a country uses energy.” Some of the participants of the expo were Belize Electricity Company Limited (BECOL), Belize Natural Energy (BNE), ProSolar Engineering, Transport Department and the Development Finance Corporation (DFC). The ProSolar Engineering provides electrification by means of solar power. Steve Bol, a technician of ProSolar, said “The Company has been in existence for five years and it is a renewable energy firm specializing in the design, development and implementation of solar, wind and micro-hydro power systems.” If you happen to live in a bungalow home, it would cost a onetime investment of $14,995 USD to electrify the home.

Belize issues Zik V alert, as first 5 cases confirmed in CARICOM
Belize and the rest of the Caribbean are on the alert, after the first cases of the Zika virus (Zik V), which transmits a dengue-like disease, were confirmed in the Caribbean Community (CARICOM) last week Monday, November 9. The virus, which originated in Africa, is transmitted by biting mosquitos—specifically, the Aedes aegypti mosquito, the same vector which carries the virus for dengue and chikungunya, another emerging disease. A public advisory issued today, Monday, November 16, by the Belize Ministry of Health says that for the first time, the Caribbean Public Health Agency (CARPHA) has confirmed five (5) cases of Zika virus in CARICOM. Oddly though, the CARICOM member state where the cases have occurred was not named in the CARPHA release. Kim Bautista, Chief of Operations, Vector Control, told Amandala that they have not been informed which Caribbean country has confirmed the presence of Zik V.

Our Heritage: Pen Cayetano pays tribute with 34-piece art exhibit
Garifuna Settlement Day is celebrated each year on November 19, and this year, the iconic and internationally-acclaimed Belizean Garifuna painter, Pen Cayetano, is holding an exhibit of 34 oil on canvas paintings, all original works, under the title, Our Heritage, as he pays tribute to Belize’s heritage through the eyes of a Garifuna man. “The main objective is to keep our Belizean heritage alive,” the artist said. “Belize has a unique heritage…. Our heritage is our strength.” Cayetano, 61, told Amandala that he is the only survivor of the group of painters who comprised the Soul to Art group back in 1975, which also included icons such as Benjamin Nicholas, Louis Sylvestre, and Percival Cain. He said that the heritage paintings which were the specialty of these artists are today hard to come by. The paintings—such as Royal Salute, which recreates a 1911 scene—also capture history. Pen paints himself in his favorite piece, Departure of old Belize boats, capturing life in the 60s. Hugo Juarez Carillo, counselor for press and legal affairs at the Embassy of Mexico in Belize at the Institute of Culture, where the exhibit is being held, told Amandala that Cayetano’s work is world class.

Entrepreneurs assisted in honing their skills
Entrepreneurs were assisted in honing their skills in a workshop that ran from November 9 to November 13, and which was administered through Young Americans Business Trust (YABT), MASHAV, BELTRAIDE, Inter-American Development Bank (IDB) and several other organizations. The aim of the training was reportedly to provide the participants with managerial and practical experience in the different aspects of small business. Chantae Guy, 23, a business student at the University of Belize and small business owner of Jungle Fever Teas, which she produces and sells in five stores across the country, told Amandala that the workshop has taught her how to work as part of a team, and to make her entrepreneurial skills second-nature. Guy also noted that Belizeans tend to overlook the importance of registering their products in order to own their brands legally.

Munchi and Gapi libel case ends
The case brought against Ramon “Munchi” Cervantes, Jr., and Fiesta FM by Deputy Prime Minister Hon. Gaspar “Gapi” Vega ended in the Supreme Court of Chief Justice Kenneth Benjamin shortly after 1:00 p.m. today, after both sides made final oral submissions. Chief Justice Benjamin indicated to the parties that he will issue a ruling on December 22. Cervantes’ attorney, Said Musa, told Amandala today that he is confident that his client will be exonerated based on the deficiencies in the case that attorney Rodwell Williams, SC, had argued before the court. Musa said that Vega did not present any evidence of what was broadcast. Instead, Vega had a tape recording of what was broadcast on Love FM, and Love FM was not the entity being sued, Musa emphasized. Musa also stressed that the plaintiff Vega could not make up his mind about the particular actions against which he was filing suit. Cervantes, Musa said, was sued for slander, while Fiesta FM was sued for libel.

Dolores won Hattieville by 155, lost Ladyville by 253
In my column last week, I wrote that our sources had said that it was the Hattieville boxes which sank Dolores. This was not so. Dolores won Hattieville, but she lost Ladyville by too large a margin. Below is a breakdown of the village boxes in Belize Rural Central for the November 4 general election. Another very interesting constituency was Stann Creek West. On election night, the early word was that the UDP’s Walter Garbutt, a newcomer but a popular teacher, had won Stann Creek West. Our sources say that Mr. Garbutt had actually left the counting room to begin celebrating, and that the PUP incumbent, Rodwell Ferguson, had also departed from the room, in effect conceding. But, there was a bombshell foul up in which the Georgetown boxes had not been counted and recorded. The Georgetown boxes then put Rodwell over the top by 8 votes, the narrowest margin of victory in the 31 divisions. Below is a breakdown of the village boxes in Stann Creek West.

Baby did not drown in flood as reported
The ever-expanding presence of social media and the public’s almost instant access to information on the internet has caused an explosion in new, unconventional sources of news stories. Increased availability of information, however, does not guarantee accuracy, and sometimes those gathering information on the internet pass on what turn out to be incomplete or inaccurate stories. Over the weekend, there was a lot of news coverage of the heavy rains and consequent flooding in the southern districts of Stann Creek and Toledo. In one of the news stories about the flood carried on Love FM and the internet site Belize Breaking News (BBN) it was reported that a two-month-old infant slipped out of her mother’s arms and drowned in the flood. The mother and her infant child were heading home to Santa Cruz when the incident occurred, both news sources reported yesterday, Sunday. Today, Monday, however, Amandala spoke to the area representative of Toledo West, Hon. Oscar Requeña, who told us that indeed, there was an incident involving a mother and her infant child.

River Valley on watch as flood displaces hundreds in southern Belize
Hundreds of residents of southern Belize were displaced over the weekend—and some are still unable to return to their homes—after a tropical wave spawned bouts of torrential rains which drenched the Belize, Cayo and Toledo Districts. Persons from districts in Stann Creek and Toledo began seeking shelter on Saturday. Four-ton army trucks assisted with getting villagers out of places which had become impassable to regular traffic. The National Emergency Management Organization (NEMO) provided emergency relief supplies, such as stoves and gas for cooking, for persons who were not able to return to their homes for days. They were also provided with blankets, mattresses, and medical supplies. About 400-500 head of cattle, valued at several thousands of dollars, had to be taken to higher ground because their pastures had been inundated, and feed had been moved in for them with the assistance of the Ministry of Agriculture.

The Reporter

BERT announces licensed EMTs
The Belize Emergency Response Team (BERT), this week announced the list of Emergency Medical technicians, who have been licensed for the 2015-2015 period. The 27 persons on the list have satisfied the licensing criteria of completing the required amount of continuing professional development hours and […]

Caribbean Public Health Agency warns about Zika virus outbreak
The Caribbean Public Health Agency (CARPHA), this week, confirmed five cases of the Zika virus in the Caribbean and has issued a cautionary note for all nations in the region to be alert. Belize’s Ministry of Health (MOH) is preparing for the arrival of the […]

Pan American Development Foundation and Taiwan donate equipment to UB
The Pan American Development Foundation (PADF) donated $4,000.00 worth of technological equipment, tools and software to the University of Belize (UB) last Friday. The donation, made on UB’s second Annual Geographic Information Sytems (GIS) Day, was made possible through the support of the Republic of […]

CARICOM condemns Paris attacks amidst criticisms of biased media coverage
Amidst criticisms that the international media has given biased coverage of the recent terrorist attacks in France, the Caribbean Community (CARICOM) issued a statement in support of those killed and injured. Following the attacks last Friday, the CARICOM Secretariat issued a statement condemning the attacks, […]

Complicated custody battle leaves two-year-old in crossfire
A complicated custody battle between a Belizean mother and a Guatemalan father has resulted in their two-year-old daughter being handed over to the Department of Human Services. The Family Court awarded custody of Neña Perez to the Department. According to the Chief Executive Officer in […]

Because Taiwan is a part of Gaia
Written by: Minister Kuo-Yen Wei During the 1970s, British scholar James Lovelock put forward the Gaia hypothesis, which proposes that the Earth is a self-regulating, complex system, and that human beings constitute one organ of this entity. The well-being of the planet is thus dependent on humankind’s ability to achieve […]

Stakeholders in Belize discuss COP 21
This week public and private sector stakeholders gathered at the Best Western Belize Biltmore Plaza Hotel to discuss Belize’s national position on climate change. The two-day consultation hosted by the National Climate Change Office, was held to assist with the preparation of Belize’s Intended National […]

Lower sugar prices for next crop is nothing new, says CEO
While the price per ton of sugar cane delivered this coming crop year to the Belize Sugar Industries will be significantly lower than the last few years, it is nothing new from what cane farmers had been receiving five years ago, a Ministry of Agriculture […]

Police find weed at Tropic Air Office
The Police Special Branch and Criminal Investigation Branch, intercepted a shipment of marijuana at a Tropic Air branch in Ranchito Corozal, on Friday. The police claims that they reacted to a tip to search a box of Lala Milk. The box was sealed with transparent […]

Shrimp industry faces viral disease; $30 million in losses
An estimated $30 million and hundreds of jobs have been lost due to a viral disease at shrimp farms across the country. The crisis has investors trying to grapple with salvaging one of Belize’s largest income earners. Since the virus was detected in March, […]

First Kareem Clarke Memorial this Saturday
The first Kareem Clarke Memorial, organized by a group of local journalists, will be held this Saturday at the BTL Park from 4:00 p.m. to 7:00 p.m. in memory of the late slain Kremandala reporter. The event will feature an award ceremony for the […]

By: Neri Briceño Dear Editor: I extend my congratulations to both Prime Minister Dean Barrow and the UDP for the victory achieved in last week’s General Elections. It was a hard fought fight, but ultimately the party was victorious, which should translate into an overall victory for the party and […]

Dispute over property leads to triple chopping. Cops arrest Dad
A father from San Pedro Colombia Village in Toledo faces two counts of attempted murder after he chopped his two sons, when they intervened in a domestic dispute to defend their mother. In the process, one of the sons was critically wounded and is receiving […]

Heavy weekend downpour inundates Belize again
Heavy weekend showers caused several low-lying areas throughout the country to flood, resulting in hundreds of families evacuating their homes. Late Saturday, the National Emergency Management Organization (NEMO) issued several advisories with evacuation tips and flood notifications, primarily for southern Belize. By Sunday, the advisory […]

The last two weeks have been a busy time for the new government, but now that ministerial portfolios have been allocated and the Senate nominations are complete, Belizeans are waiting to see what else will unfold in the first hundred days of the new Barrow administration. There are several pieces […]

Lisa Shoman to vie for PUP leadership
Lisa Shoman, who has been appointed again by the People’s United Party (PUP) to serve in the Senate, has indicated her intention to vie for leadership of the party, making history in Belize on a platform where no woman has ever before ventured. Shoman made […]

Mother needs assistance for severely injured child
Marla Encalada, the mother of severely injured six-year-old Kareema Encalada, this week made an emotional plea for financial assistance to seek outside medical treatment to repair the child’s mutilated pelvis. “It’s hard for me; I’m pleading to the public to assist me in whatever way, […]

Mayas return for clarification – again!
On Tuesday a panel of Caribbean Court of Justice judges gave GOB a deadline of two months to return with a concrete plan with a view to defining Mayan land rights, in consultation with the Mayan people. Representatives of the Mayan Leaders Alliance (MLA) and the Toledo Alcaldes Association (TAA) […]

#509289 - 11/19/15 06:06 AM Re: Today's Belize News: November 19, 2015 [Re: Marty]
Marty Offline

Breaking Belize NewsPJ

Happy Garifuna Settlement Day
Tomorrow is the official observation of Garifuna Settlement Day in Belize, which is celebrated on November 19th of each year to honor the coming of the Garinagu people to this country after being exiled from Roatan Honduras following a republican revolt. Led by the great Alejo Beni, a […]

Belize Water Service and Workers sign new Collective Bargaining Agreement
This morning representatives of Belize Water Services Limited (BWS) and the Belize Water Services Workers Union (BWSWU) signed a new collective bargaining agreement before Labour Commissioner, Ivan Williams. The joint press release is short on details of the agreement but says it is retroactive to November 1, 2015 […]

Minor charged over stolen motorbikes and pleads guilty to escape
A 17 year old minor who had been on the run for the last three weeks was picked up by police and today arraigned on two counts of handling stolen goods and an additional charge for escape from lawful custody while being detained for handling stolen goods. He […]

Men sentenced for trafficking 50 pounds of weed
In the Magistrate’s Court today two Belize City men were condemned to a heavy fine and prison time for trafficking over fifty pounds of cannabis found inside a Dodge Caravan at the police George Price Highway checkpoint at Mile 4 on May 11, 2013, two years ago. Senior […]

Belize Bank donates $2,000 to Mr. Belize competition
On October 30th, the Belize Bank continued to show its commitment in supporting sporting activities and youth development by making a donation of $2,000 to the Belize Body Building and Fitness Federation’s (BBBFF) annual Mr. Belize Competition. A release from the bank stated that the donation is one way of […]

Minor pleads guilty for handling stolen boat engine
Two relatives, a minor and his 36 year old relative, Daniel Humes, both fishermen, were arraigned in the Belize City Magistrate’s Court today on a single charge of handling stolen goods. Allegations are that on Monday, November 16, 2015, both men were found in possession of an outboard […]

Who owns unlicensed gun found in Belize City?
Tonight, 24 year old Dennis Arthur Talbert Junior is on remand at the Belize Central Prison after accused of keeping an unlicensed firearm and 2 live rounds of ammunition for a .38 COLT brand firearm. Late this evening, Talbert Junior was taken before Magistrate Deborah Rogers and pleaded […]

Belize Bank proudly supports the Salvation Army Christmas Program
The Belize Bank Ltd was pleased to provide its support to the Salvation Army once again during this Christmas season. The Bank presented its contribution of $5,000.00 towards the Salvation Army’s Christmas Program which reaches out to children and adults across the country providing toys, and delivering food hampers to […]

Eight men charged for bar fight
Appearing before Magistrate Carlos Mendoza in court yesterday morning, were eight men who all pleaded not guilty charges of “Disorderly Conduct” and “Damage to Property”, which were levied against them for their involvement in a bar fight at La Catracha Bar recently. Located on Coney Drive in Belize City, the […]

Incursions into Belize still a problem
Although incursions by Guatemalan Xateros and illegal loggers have decreased in recent years, in an interview with the media yesterday, the Executive Director of Friends of Conservation and Development (FCD), Rafael Manzanero, said that incursions by xateros, gold panners and farmers from neighboring Guatemala making milpas in Belizean territory, still […]

Post-mortem on minor conducted
A post mortem was conducted on the body of 16-year-old Ivan Endy Choc of Young Bank Road, Roaring Creek Village, yesterday by Dr. Mario Estradabran. The examination, which was done between the hours of 1:30 p.m. and 4:00 p.m., determined that Choc died of “Massive Brain Damage due to Head […]

70-year-old woman brutally raped in San Pedro
San Pedro Police received a disturbing report of the assault and rape of a 70-year-old housewife in that municipality, which occurred on Monday, November 16th, while the woman was walking home alone in the area of Coco Plum Street. The elderly housewife told officers that around 9:30 p.m. on the […]

Belize exports are up
A release of the trade figures for the third quarter of this year, by the Statistical Institute of Belize (SIB), indicates that there has been massive improvement in our country’s import to export ratio, with a drop in imports and a huge rise in exported products. Comparing the amount of […]

Belize: The Socio-Cultural Evolution and The Economy
Belize is a multi-cultural, multi-ethnic melting pot with population of around 360,000. In 1964, or 50 years ago, the population was 103,000…..which means the population has more than tripled in half-a-century. This growth has been fueled by organic multiplication of the local stock of creoles (black mixed with […]


Reaching Across the Science to Society Gap
The chasm between science and society is wide and deep, illustrated most recently by events in climate science and calls for biodiversity protection. Scientists tend to blame it on society, but scientists also share the blame. It is thus essential that the scientific community — and scientists as individuals — begin to re-think our approach to doing science. This is particularly salient for biologists who study how natural systems work, given the widespread influence of human activities on Earth’s life-support systems and the profound dependence of humanity on other living things. Scientists can distance themselves from society in four ways, sometimes inadvertently, sometimes intentionally. 1. They tend to pursue a research agenda they are passionate about, often without thinking about how the energy devoted to a particular project serves society. 2. Most scientists regard their job as finished when they report their results in a specialized research journal, adding a notch to their publication count.

24 Things About The Garifuna Culture
T1. he culture started in the North Eastern South America and the Caribbean (From the edges of the Orinoco River into the Caribbean Sea) 2. The Roots of the Garifuna culture come from Black Caribs and Arawaks. Labeling is topical – ROOTS is where the answer is! 3. Saint Vincent is the place where between 1000AD to 1796AD the Garifuna were formed. 4. For the Garifuna, God is feminine. 5. The Arawaks moved up from South America (Orinoco Basin) around 0AD (birth of Christ); the Caribs moved into the Caribbean around 1000AD. 6. Christopher Columbus met the Island Tainos (Arawak) 7. On the islands, the Arawak had gold, elaborate dances, used tobacco and other drugs, they were a loving people who were organized via matriarchal lines. 8. The Caribs were raiders and traders. Among their raiding, they collected the Arawak women – which will sooner be a part of the larger Garifuna cultural mix and language 9. After the biological mixing of Caribs and Arawak, the children were organized with a patronymic organization. They started to take their names form their fathers 10. The Garifuna people move extensively in a extensive territory

The competition was stiff and the video footage funny
Minute to Win It for Charity at Roadkill Bar is growing popular fast. A big crowd came out to support Monday night’s charity the Belize Red Cross San Pedro Branch. This Week’s Games: Puddle Jumper, Face the Cookie, Mochachino (sponsored by Caye Coffee), Stick the Landing, Rapid Fire (sponsored by Island Time Brewing Company), Dizzy Mummy, Back Flip, How’s it Hanging and the last game to determine the winner, Nutstacker. Games will not be announced ahead of time, but if you want to win next week, practice Minute to Win it at home. Just go to That Blue Print Guy on YouTube and use this weeks list of games and the ones from last week Minute to Win it for Charity as a starting point.

Ambergris Caye Vs. Placencia, Belize: Buying A Beach Home in Belize…How Do You Make This Choice?
Ambergris Caye and Placencia, Belize. Both beach towns. Both have ever growing expat communities, both have restaurants, bars, shopping…both have lots to offer. And let me tell you before I start any of this – I have no definitive answer. Some people visit Belize once or repeatedly…falling in love with one spot…and the choice is easy. Keep in mind that Belize is relatively tiny – about the size of the state of Massachusetts. It’s just about 170 miles from North to South. Others visit both popular resort areas and weigh the pros and cons of each spot. But without moving there and really diving into the waters (rather than just testing them)…it’s a tough call. Both spots are gorgeous. So here are what I think the differences and similarities are…and then I’ll show you a few real estate options in both. Hopefully it will help you get an overview.

The value of volunteering
I am living proof that volunteering with conservation organisations like Wildtracks can help put you on the right track to achieving your dream job. For years, while I was studying and working in international development, I struggled to marry my passion for marine conservation and my work in natural disaster research. Most of the time I ended up spending more time and effort on my volunteer jobs outside of work than my actual paid job. One day, nearing the end of my contract, I searched an international environmental job website to see what kinds of conservation and research jobs were out there. I was so amazed and inspired to see all of these incredible positions as cetacean observers, project coordinators for coastal monitoring work, wildlife rehabilitation, research assistants in biological data collection projects, marine conservation advocacy, etc. I looked at all of these different types of dream jobs and studied the qualifications and requirements for each of them. I wanted to merge my passion into my profession but wasn’t sure how. After looking at the trends in the requirements, a mental light bulb clicked on - I clearly needed to get the relevant education and field experience in marine biology in order to get these jobs, instead of pleading with potential employers about my passion and transferable skills. That is how the simple activity of a job search inspired me to go back to school to get an MSc in Marine Environmental Management.

Read this before deciding to travel to Belize! How does Belize TRULY compare to other exotic vacations?
After hearing guest feedback about Belize for the last 2 years, I thought it was time to put together a post about who may love their vacation to Belize, and who may be a better fit for other places; I sincerely hope potential guests will read this before they come. Expectations are a big part of vacation, and no one wins if a tourist expected one thing, but found that what they were told did not match reality. This is more of an article then a blog post, less for entertainment and more for your own research for your trip! It can be so hard to choose a destination for your vacation; every place you research is going to look perfect on the internet. Only by doing a bit more research will you be able to determine the subtle or significant differences between "paradises!" HOW DOES BELIZE COMPARE TO OTHER BEACH DESTINATIONS? This is hard to capture in one paragraph! One reason Belize recently won international awards for Best Overall Destination and Best Beach Destination (Ambergris Caye and Placencia, respectively) is because Belize truly offers an authentic and sightly off the beaten path experience - NOT because Belize offers perfection unlike anywhere else. Belize is NOT like Cancun or many of the traditional places you find on cruise ports, like Nassau, St Thomas, The Dominican Republic, etc.

International Sourcesizz

MFX Broker Belize Regulation Solid as Regulator Delists Old Company
On the 17th of November the Belize financial regulatory agency posted information on its website that the entity MFX BROKER Inc. is no longer regulated by it. The International Financial Services Commission of Belize omitted to point out in its announcement that the company behind the brokerage, MFX BROKER, changed to Master Services Inc. According to the company’s representatives, Master Services Inc. is the owner of MFX BROKER’s brand with 2 licenses of International Financial Services Commission (IFSC) Belize. There were no notifications or license revocations of the company. The MFX BROKER INC entity mentioned in the IFSC announcement that it has not carried out any activity as it was closed 2 years ago. According to Igor Volkov, President of MFX Broker: “In late 2013 we decided to work in several different countries around the globe on behalf of sole legal body. Master Services Inc. was registered for this purpose. The entity received all required licenses in Belize. We closed all other entities so that clients are not confused about the company they are working with. However, the regulator posted the information about the event just two years after the change, mainly the regulator announced information about MFX BROKER INC entity which is not active and was closed so far.”

Belize’s IFSC warns against Profit Riders, promising up to 200% in daily return
The International Financial Services Commission of Belize (IFSC) has published one more warning on its website. The watchdog has voiced its concerns regarding Profit Riders Inc., an investment firm operating via www.profit-riders.com. The company is promising generous profits – up to 200% in daily returns, to investors that decide to entrust Profit Riders their money. The IFSC notes that the company is purporting to be registered in Belize to carry out online investment activities under registration number IFSC/60/560/TS/15 stating its registered office to be 84 Albert Street, Belize City, Belize, C.A. However, these claims are fake. The regulator confirms that “Profit Riders Inc.” is not licensed by the International Financial Services Commission of Belize or any other competent authority in Belize to engage in trading in securities or any type of international financial services. Investors are asked to exercise extreme caution with regards to this business entity and to inform the IFSC in case they are contacted by representatives of Profit Riders

Maya No Mystery to Her
In 2001, I traveled to the Belize-Guatemala border to report on UCSB archaeologist Anabel Ford’s many discoveries at El Pilar, the Maya monument complex she uncovered in 1983. That’s where she developed revolutionary theories that threatened to rock the academic world, namely that the Maya did not “disappear” due to an overpopulation cataclysm, but merely dwindled with time. Instead, Ford found that the Maya proudly persist in Mesoamerica, that they use the surrounding forest as a sustainable, civilization-supporting garden like they have for millennia, and that the use of fire is a critical part of that farming, not indicative of a widespread “slash-and-burn” culture that so many believe contributed to their demise. Fifteen years later, though, Ford is banging those same drums while the tone-deaf academic establishment clings to ideas invented decades ago. Her latest strike is the book The Maya Forest Garden: Eight Millennia of Sustainable Cultivation of the Tropical Woodlands, which she coauthored with Ronald Nigh, a professor in Chiapas, Mexico. In relatively nontechnical language, the book uses research from multiple fields to detail the scientific evidence behind Ford’s belief that the Maya forest can indeed sustain a large population, suggesting that the collapse was probably more of a slow sociopolitical process than a carrying-capacity catastrophe.

Canadian investor in court over seizing Garifuna land
An investor known as the ‘Canadian porn king’ faced court last Friday, November 13, accused of illegally seizing land from Garifuna communities on the east coast of Honduras Randy Jorgensen – who earnt the title of ‘porn king’ for amassing his wealth through an empire of pornographic video stores – faced charges of illegally appropriating Garifuna land for tourism development projects in Trujillo. According to Human Rights NGO Rights Action, the judge ruled that there was insufficient evidence for the case to proceed to trial. However, the Garifuna do have a five-year window in which to present new evidence. The Garifuna are descended from Arawak and Carib indigenous people and escaped West African slaves. Living in small coastal communities in Guatemala, Belize, Honduras and Nicaragua, they number about 300,000. In Honduras, there are some 100,000 Garifuna who have lived along the Caribbean coast for more two centuries, farming on small plots of land and practising subsistence fishing.

The Caribbean contribution to the First World War
Thirty years before the Empire Windrush docked at Tilbury, black and Asian soldiers were in Europe fighting for the ‘Mother Country’. Many people of Caribbean origin will have an ancestor who took part in the First World War – one of the 397 officers and 15,204 men from Britain’s Caribbean colonies who served in the British West Indies Regiment (BWIR). The regiment was formed 100 years ago because the War Office in London was unhappy about black soldiers serving in British regiments. They were drawn from the Bahamas, Barbados, British Guiana (Guyana), British Honduras (Belize), Grenada, the Leeward Islands (Anguilla, Antigua and Barbuda, British Virgin Islands, Dominica and St Kitts and Nevis), St Lucia, St Vincent and Trinidad & Tobago. However, the biggest contingent – two-thirds of the total – came from Jamaica. They served on the front line against the Turkish Army in Palestine and Jordan. General Allenby praised “…the excellent conduct of the machine-gun section of the BWIR during two successful raids on the Turkish trenches. All ranks behaved with great gallantry under heavy rifle fire.” Others were sent to the trenches of France and Flanders, the sands of Egypt and the mountain passes of northern Italy. They were given the unglamorous but essential (and often lethal) jobs of digging trenches, loading ammunition and laying telephone wires.



    The most important day in the Garifuna calendar is November 19th. On this day Garifuna Settlement Day, the arrival of the first Garinagu to Belize is celebrated in all Garifuna communities in the Country.
  • The Government of Belize wishes all Belizeans celebrating on the 19th of November a very happy and safe Garifuna Settlement Day!, 1min. Bungui Lerebei Sun Katei Lidan nei fureindei, Luma Benefau Awanseruni Houn Garinagu!

  • The Lord's Prayer in Garifuna, 1min. Children from St. Barnabas' School practice the Lord's Prayer in Garifuna. This beautiful melody is traditionally sung while linking "pinky" fingers with the person to the side.

  • , 19min. Belize it FARMLAND... Young Farmers in Corozal Bay, Belize!

  • Belize to Climate Change Conference, 4min.

  • Belize 2015 | Aftermovie, 18min. A film on our 18 day trip of a lifetime from Pennsylvania to Belize... Thanks to the Krieder Family for welcoming us to their home away from home and for all they have done for us. We've made memories that will last us a lifetime.

  • Stranded on the Belize highway, 11min. I know: the video quality is terrible but there are some good parts! And it's not for entertainment purposes. It's to show people what it looks like outside of Punta Gorda, heading towards the Mayan villages. What an adventure I had this day!

  • Belize Diving 2015., 3.5min. Belize diving footage from Silk Caye, a popular dive site near Placencia, Belize. Enjoyed great dives and recommend the "North Wall" and "White Hole" dives. Note: Lionfish are shown getting speared and are an invasive species that are hurting the reefs in the Caribbean.

  • NEMO Minister on the ground in the Belize River Valley, 5min.

  • TAKEOFF! Tropic Air Flight from Dangriga, Belize to Belize City, Belize, 3min. Our Tropic Air departure from the landing strip in Dangriga to Belize City.

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