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#511971 - 02/27/16 11:35 AM Today's Belize News: February 27, 2016
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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

Breakfast Time for the Snowy Egret!
Breakfast on the beach! This egret was enjoying a morning treat right on our shores!

San Pedro High School boys win 3rd place at NSSSA football championship
The San Pedro High School boys won 3rd place at the National Secondary Schools Sports Association (NSSSA), and hosted by St. Johns College at the M.C.C. grounds last Friday and Saturday, February 19-20. The Isla Bonita Boys dominated the Western Zone champions, the Sacred Heart College boys: 3-1 to win the 3rd place game on Saturday morning. Omar Ogaldez and Ashton Lopez led the San Pedro offensive, with team captain Luis Valdez as the midfield general creating plays for Luis Mencia and Melvin Guzman to advance the ball up the sidelines. Ryan Carbajal anchored the San Ignacio defense, and with the help of Iser Teul, Chris Martinez and Eaton Lisbey, they kep the isla boys off the scoreboard for the entire 1st half. In the 2nd half, the Isla Bonita Boys also won a penalty; and Luis Mencias blasted the equalizer past goalie Raheem Crawford: 1-1. Omar Ogaldez and Ashton Lopez kept on the pressure, and Omar scored a 2nd winning goal for Isla Bonita. Coach Alex Noralez introduced Francois Ruben to strengthen his defense, relieving Ogaldez to secure the victory. Ashton Lopez iced the victory cake with a third goal for the 3-1 win. Marvin Hernandez replaced Lopez to deny the Cayo boys any chance of a comeback!

How do you spell community fun? B-I-N-G-O
Not every Friday night consists of hitting the nightclubs or bars along the beach and scattered through town. In fact, for a lot of families looking to relax while being entertained, the San Pedro Lions’ Den is the place to be. What could possibly be the attraction, you may wonder? Well, it’s Bingo and BBQ time! From 7PM onwards, Lion Members tend to Bingo cards and call out numbers to those sitting attentively at their tables. Families, friends, visitors, all kinds of folks join in on the fun. Each game costs $2BZ, with a middle and final game costing $5 where you can win more. Depending on the size of the crowd each game can garner up to $100 or more, with the $5 games adding up to as much as $400! Drinks are served at the bar, as part of the fundraising of the evening, and if you are lucky enough, there is BBQ to enjoy: chicken, beans, coleslaw and hot tortillas make a hearty meal while you play your favorite Bingo card.

No delays expected for Ambergris Stadium
As part of his official tour through the country, Honorable Elodio Aragon Jr. Minister of Culture, Youth and Sports visited San Pedro Town where he joined Mayor Daniel Guerrero along with Deputy Gary Greif and Councillors Hector “Tito” Alamilla and Gabriel Nuñez. Christy Mastry from the Belize Infrastructure Limited and Augusto Blanco from AM Construction were also present at the meeting. The group conducted an onsite visit of the stadium, where great advances in the construction was evident. The vision of Belize infrastructure Limited for the project continues to be the same. Upon completion the stadium will include a regulation pitch, locker facilities, concession stands, bathroom facilities and a storage unit. Once completed, the field will be the only proper football pitch on the island and will benefit the development of the sport on the island. In addition the stadium will also be suitable for softball, running and track and field.

Eight awarded at Red and White Gala
Seven officers attached to the San Pedro Police Station and two island residents were honored during the annual Police Red and White Gala held in Belize City on Friday, February 19th. The Gala is held as a form of appreciation for outstanding police officers and community members across the country. The honorees from San Pedro included Officer in Charge of the Coastal Executive Unit Superintendent Sandra Bodden, Sergeant Raymond Berry, Police Constable (PC) Norman Coye, Woman Police Constable Arelee Young, PC Epifanio Bol, PC Arthur Anthony, business owner Juan Gomez and business owner Peter Lawrence. After the gala, The San Pedro Sun had the opportunity to speak with one of the awardees. Peter Lawrence is the owner of Caribbean Villas Resort and Pedro’s Inn, and was awarded for his outstanding contribution to law enforcement in San Pedro Town for the year 2015. “I was very pleased to be awarded. I think the police are doing a great job compared to a few years ago. I believe that the head of San Pedro Police Station are doing a wonderful job for San Pedro,” said Lawrence, who indicated that he will continue assisting the police in the future in any way he can. “Most people seem to not want to help the police. I think more business owners should step up to the plate and assist in the community. Without a doubt the police are doing a much better job than in the past.”

Belize Bureau of Standards shows no tolerance for price gouging
The Belize Bureau of Standards (BBS) has been actively enforcing the recent price changes in both white sugar and grade “C” rice (70 percent whole grain and 30 percent broken grain). The price changes were made effective back in December of 2015, with white sugar retailing at a maximum price of 75 cents per pound and grade “G” rice retailing at a maximum wholesale and retail price of 80 and 90 cents per pound, respectively. But several stores are yet to adhere to these price controls, and has resulted in over 30 stores being prosecuted for failure to comply. To date, over 30,000 pounds of products, namely flour, grade “C” rice, white sugar and brown sugar have been confiscated due to over pricing. “We want the general public to know that we have been diligently trying to ensure that there is compliance with the price control regulations. So our officers have been engaged in market surveillance activities countrywide and the report we sent out basically was a status report on what has been done so far,” said Trejo. The case files of businesses caught price gouging have been sent to the Controller of Supplies for review and will thereafter be submitted to the office of the District of Public Prosecution for a final ruling.

Isla Bonita hosts its first Science Fair
On Wednesday, February 17th, Isla Bonita Elementary School (IBES) held their first annual Science Fair. School gates opened at 10AM, welcoming parents, friends and community members to view science projects developed by IBES’ upper division students. It was a great opportunity for the students to display their knowledge of the scientific curriculum while demonstrating their creativity and uniqueness. Students from standards four to six were divided into groups and tasked with creating an experiment or science based project. It was evident that all the groups were well versed in their material, as they presented projects varying from mechanics to chemical compounds. The Science Fair also served as a form of grading the students on the material they have covered throughout the school year without requiring a standardized test.

Ambergris Today

Two Detained for Murder of Honduran Woman in San Pedro
She had only been living in San Pedro, Ambergris Caye, Belize for little over a year when Johanna Samantha Medez was murdered inside her apartment after her assailant cut her throat in what police say was a burglary attempt. While some progress has been made in the murder case, San Pedro Police have only detained two suspects. The police are awaiting the results of fingerprint samples of two people who have been detained as suspects for the murder. But Inspector Henry Jemmott says that island residents have not been enough cooperative to help them solve the crime. He states that neighbors are refusing to come forward with statements they need to put together a proper case. The Police is appealing to the public for assistance in the case to tie up loose ends and possibly charge someone for the crime. Up to now, with the help of some video footage, police have ascertained that someone was waiting for Johanna inside her apartment.

Misc Belizean Sourcesmzz

Lion's Club beach party fund raiser
Have a fun day Sunday at the Lion's beach party fund raiser!

BELTRAIDE WORKSHOP AIMS TO FOSTER AN INNOVATIVE ENTREPRENEURSHIP ECOSYSTEM IN BELIZE
The Belize Trade and Investment Development Service (BELTRAIDE) in collaboration with infoDev, a World Bank Group, will host a one day workshop with stakeholders to chart a way to foster an innovative entrepreneurship ecosystem in Belize. This workshop will bring together incubator managers, entrepreneurs, academia, government officials, the media, donors and investors to facilitate the development of a collaborative approach to build a sustainable ecosystem for entrepreneurship and innovation. The workshop will be held in the Dining Room on the ITVET. Campus, Freetown Road, Belize City on Monday, February 29th 2016 at 8:30 a.m. The workshop, entitled Accelerate Caribbean’s Entrepreneurship Ecosystem Development, is part of the Accelerate Caribbean Project, which forms part of a seven-year, $20 M Entrepreneurship Program of Innovation in the Caribbean, (EPIC). The objective of this project is to strengthen entrepreneurship and boost job creation across 14 CARICOM countries, including Belize. The project is designed by infoDev and implemented by IMC Worldwide.

MR VEGAS performing live inside Caye Caulker Easter Fest 2016

Health Fair at the Corozal Central Park
It's always great when organizations and individuals promote health, good health practices and environmental awareness in our communities. Today, the Belize Adventist Junior College of Calcutta Village, Corozal spearheaded a well attended Health Fair at the Corozal Central Park.

Belize Harley Davidson Bike Rally "Meet in the Middle" -"Encuentro a Medio Camino"
Yesterday was day one of the the annual Belize Harley Davidson Bike Rally "Meet in the Middle" -"Encuentro a Medio Camino". Over 400 Bikers from all over the region (Mexico and Central America) are taking part. Block Party at Black Pearl Harley Davidson in Belize City was yesterday. Today the host will be the Princess Casino in Belize City with a Pool Party. On Sunday February 28th, Bikers leave for San Pedro, Ambergris Caye where they will be greeted and hosted at Fido's Courtyard. Remember that if you bought tickets, the raffle of the brand new Harley Davidson motorcycle will take place during the event.

BEL vacancies
Vacancies exist at Belize Electricity Limited for the post of Customer Care Representative in the Customer Care Department.

Toucan soon to be released
In care at BBR for 10 months, with just 4 more days to go before freedom in the wild. It's been a long road. Here's our story: Mindy was a baby when she got squashed by a girl who fell off her bike, breaking a wing in 2 places. Dr Philip Deshield pinned it and Mindy has made a perfect recovery. Mork came from a family in the same area, who saw a tv report on Mindy's struggles and didn't know it was illegal to have a pet toucan, so called BBR to give him up, although his wings had unfortunately been clipped.

Annual Warden Meeting and Luncheon
Today the Embassy's Consular Section belt its annual Warden Meeting and Luncheon. Ambassador Moreno welcomed the group at his home during the event. U.S. Wardens are an important resource to the American community living in Belize and often serve as the first point of contact for those who need Embassy assistance in local communities. We thank the Belize U.S. Ward ends for the great job they do!

Garifuna Entrepreneurship Summit
This week Ambassador Moreno met with three of our five delegates we sent to the Garifuna Entrepreneurship Summit , organized by the U.S. Embassy in Guatemala, in Livingston, Guatemala this week. Members of the Garifuna community from Belize, Guatemala, Nicaragua and Honduras have all come together to discuss individual obstacles and collaborate on entrepreneurship opportunities that transcend borders and improve their communities.

U.S. Embassy Town Hall Meeting in San Pedro
The U.S. Embassy is hosting a Town Hall Meeting for American Citizens living in San Pedro, Belize on March 4th at 11:00 am at the Blue Water Grill. At the meeting, we will introduce staff from the Embassy who provide assistance to U.S. citizens in Belize, discuss the services the U.S. Embassy provides, and answer questions you may have about our services. Topics include: security in Belize, voting overseas, hurricane preparedness, and information on renewing your passport via DHL. Limited consular public services will be offered (cash; exact change required): Adult U.S. passport renewal – BZ$220 or US$110 Please bring current U.S. passport, completed form DS-82, 2”x2” passport photo, clear copy of passport biographic data page Child U.S. passport renewal – BZ$210 or US$105 Please bring current U.S. passport, completed form DS-11, 2”x2” passport photo, clear copy of passport biographic data page, birth certificate + 1 photocopy, each parent’s ID + 1 photocopy. BOTH parents must be present if listed on birth certificate. Fee for first adult renewal after age 16 is BZ$270 or US$135. Notary services – BZ$100 or US$50 Lunch will be available for purchase.

Channel 7

FIFA has a new President
Today in Zurich, Switzerland, representatives of 207 football nations casted a vote for the new President of FIFA, the world's governing body of football. They were there to elect a new president to fill the post at an Extraordinary Congress. That person will have the unenviable task to rebuild FIFA's reputation because the organization is going through a transition. It's trying to move forward from the biggest corruption scandal in football history, which happened under the watch of former President Joseph Sepp Blatter. He's dutifully served World Football for years, but despite his past achievements, his legacy is perpetually marred by the fact that he was the man in the driver's seat when corrupt deals were struck by his subordinates. 5 senior football executives started campaigning among the 207 nations. They were Bahraini Sheikh Salman bin Ebrahim Al Khalifa, Swiss National Gianni Infantino, Jordanian Prince Ali Bin Al Hussein, Frenchman Jerome Champagne, and South African Tokyo Sexwale. Sexwale dropped out of the race this morning, leaving the other 4 to battle it out.

MCC As A Parking Lot
The National Sports Council has entered a lease agreement with the Management of the Princess Ramada Hotel and Casino to use a portion of the MCC Grounds as parking space for its customers. Now, if you're wondering why the Sports Council is making such a decision, we were too. After all, the MCC is one of the premier football fields in the country. Today, we caught up with both the management of the Hotel, as well as the Council, and they told us that while it appears to be an imprudent decision, it's in the interest of the two parties: Ritchell Dominguez, Dir., National Sports Council: "We have been looking at our facilities, I say again and what happen is that we ask Princess to partner with us in making the place much safer and much more user-friendly. Because what happen is that Princess will be using it at night and we will be using it if we have a match during the day. Because what happen is that the land is sitting down. Princess is going to finance us to use the parking lot - we are lending it to them so that they will use it in the times that we are not using the parking lot and they will build the parking lot for us. So it's just a partnering with Princess and getting this project up and running.

Maya Had An Emergency Landing
Word went out yesterday that a Maya Island Air flight was forced to make a sort of crash landing on the unfinished runway, at the Belize City Municipal Airstrip. Well, the airline company released a statement today saying nothing so eventful happened. The company says, quote, "Maya Island Air Flight 222, captained by Chief Pilot Ali Urbina, departed Belize City to San Pedro via runway three zero. Seconds after takeoff he observed a power performance anomaly and decided to abort his flight. He maneuvered his aircraft for a right downwind approach to runway three zero. He landed safely and without incident. His return time was logged as 17:48. His seven passengers were boarded a few minutes after onto another Maya aircraft that landed in San Pedro at 18:25. The incident is being cooperatively examined by the Belize Department of Civil Aviation together with the technical department of Maya Island Air." End Quote.

Police Seized Fake Driver Licenses
The old Ministry of Transport Drivers licenses - they are what you might call "vintage" - the card is decades old they have that old school laminated look and don't have any special security features or watermarks. And that's why it wasn't very surprising when 24-year-old Lester Enrique Orantes entered the San Pedro Transport office last week with a fake - which he tried to renew! The transport officer examined it closely and concluded that the license - supposedly issued in Orange Walk - was false. San Pedro police investigated and found out that there is actually a ring of forgers, who make fake ones and then try to renew them - thereby exchanging the counterfeit for the real. Four people have been arrested in san Pedro and today Commissioner of Transport Crispin Jeffries told us that there are clear signs of forgery on the license. That includes a five digit number series, while the forged licenses they have scene carried 7 digits. Police continue to investigate.

Coast Guard To The Rescue!
The Coast Guard are reporting tonight that they rescued 4 civilians who were stranded at sea near Colson Caye. The captain of the vessel "Jah Real" started to experience engine failure, and try as he might, he couldn't get it started. He then radioed to the authorities for help, and the Coast Guard were then activated. A Quick Response Team, made up of Petty officers Daniel Sabido, Arthur Garbutt, Trevor Vasquez, and Seaman Osman Alcoser, moved off with haste to come to their aid. The vessel was located, and the Coast Guard brought them to mainland, where they landed safely.

The Regional Youth Council's Perspective
Earlier this week, we showed you our interview with a few of the members of the Brave and the Bold team, who want to be elected to National Youth Council. As we've told you, it's been tried before, where the Government has tried to put a structure in place to allow for the youth population, which makes up a significant part of the country's population, to be able to advise parliament on issues affecting youths. This time around, the Government is making an earnest attempt to ensure that this Council does not fail in its function again. They've been seeking the advise of the Caribbean Regional Youth Council, which is kind of like the youth version the CARICOM Heads of State. We spoke with the Chairman of the Caribbean Regional Youth Council about his role to oversee the installment of the Belize Chapter of the Youth Organization:

Nuri's Insight Into Gang Culture
Most people know him as the talk show co-host of Krem Television's morning show WUB, and if you have been following him even before that you'd know he also used to host the morning show at Love Television. But not everyone knows Nuri Muhammad for his intimate involvement in Youth Development in Belize. In 1993 he was the First Director of the Youth Department. From then he went on to take up several other posts in the youth development sector. His wealth of knowledge and experience working with at risk youths inspired him to write his latest book. This one is entitled "Insight into Gang Culture in Belize." We spoke to him at the Leo Bradley Library today during launch of his new book. Nuri Muhammed, Author: "The book is called "Insights" and I think the word indicates that it is a reflective look at the challenge that we face with youth crime and violence in this country. We tried to look at it over a spectrum of 25 to 30 yrs. so that we could see its generational issue as oppose to simply reporting it as various incidents that take place on a nightly and weekly basis. So the book is called "Insights into Gang Culture." Again, culture is an important aspect of looking at it because if we look at crime and violence simply as various incidents then it remains just a front page story or a nightly story on the news, but we look at it as a culture it then requires us to start looking at the depth of what is creating that nightly news and there is depth to it when we take the cultural approach."

Dr. Hidalgo's Award In Intensive Care
The KHMH got regional recognition last week when one its doctors, Physician Jorge Hidalgo, received 2 prestigious awards in intensive care medicine. While it's a recognition of the doctor himself, it's a major nod for the hospital to note that its intensive care unit has passed international standards with flying colors. Today, we spoke with Hidalgo about being the first Doctor in the Caribbean to receive this honor: Dr. Jorge Hidalgo, Awarded Intensive Care Honors: "Just last week I got Masters in Critical Medicine. The Master of Critical Medicine is conferred by the medical college of critical care and the path to get into the Masters is initially we need to be a fellow of the American College of Critical Care and to be able to join the fellowship, we need to be leading the critical care in 3 aspects criteria; 1) to be working in an intensive care unit, the head of the intensive unit at Karl Heusner. We developed that unit with Dr. Ariaga a couple years ago. However, since 2001 we opened the first intensive care unit in Belize at Universal Health Services, now Belize Healthcare Partners, but the first intensive care unit that was opened in the country and since then we are working dedicating to the Intensive care unit since then.

Visitor Brought "Medical Marijuana"
Medical marijuana, that's what an American tourist told police she had packed in her suitcase. 46 year old Stacey Ann Sanzobrin, from Michigan - where medical marijuana is legal - told police that the less than one gram of weed in her suitcase was what her doctor had prescribed. Airport screeners caught Sanzorbin and her husband because they carried a high scent of marijuana. Police believe that the couple had just smoked the weed which is why the smell was so strong when they passed authorities as they were about to leave. Police detained her overnight, and took her to court this morning where Sanzorbin pleaded guilty and explained to Chief Magistrate Anne Marie Smith about her prescription for medical marijuana, and said she had no idea it was illegal in Belize. She apologized and Chief Magistrate Smith decided against imposing a fine and told her, "You are cautioned and discharged." With that, Sanzobrin was free to go - and appeared shocked at the outcome.

Remembering UBAD's History
Today during black history month the United Black Association for Development, UBAD, celebrated its 47th anniversary. This association which heralded black pride, was formed in Belize during a state of flux in the nation and the original organization led several influential movements. But while those days are, as they say, 'History', the essence of the group, founded on the principle of ancestral pride, still remains engraved in what has now become a library catering specifically for black and indigenous youths in the community. The UBAD library center, situated above the offices of the Amandala newspaper, leads several educational programs for youths in the community.

An MMA Delight
The local Mixed Martial Arts scene has been kind of underground, but the promoters and fighters want to see the mainstream Belizean public embrace it like they do boxing, except with the kicking and the different submission moves. Some of the participants are new fighters, and one of them - who we met today - is not even 15. Tomorrow night, however, they are all men when they enter the cage to exchange gloves with Mexican fighters. For the second year since the local MMA's have been hosted, 5 amateur Belizean fighters will enter the ring to spar with 6 foreign fighters. The event is being hosted by the Body 2000 gym at the Biltmore Plaza. Local Coordinator Mark Neil told us more. Tickets are available event at Body 2000, Jadore Boutique, and LA Fashion for $20 dollars and is also available at the door for $25 dollars.

Motorcycle Rally In Town
You might have heard the distinctive sound of the revving of loud engines around the busy streets of Belize City today. It is quite an uncommon sound for most of us locals, but if you are a motorcycle enthusiasts you'd know that it is that time of the year again when the streets of Belize are overtaken with motorcyclists from all across the Americas. They come here for the annual "Meet in the Middle" Bike Rally. Emanuel Pech stopped in at the bikers' center on cemetery road today to check out what all the buzz was about. The Revving of motors, the thick leather jackets and the free spirited nature of people, all say that the annual Harley Davidson convention is back in Belize. For the past three years members of the Black Pearl Motorcycle Club, the first motorcycle clubs ever established in Belize, has been hosting this event in an effort to put Belize on the biking map. Nigel Espat- Member of Black Pearl Motorcycle Club: "We are taking over the city once again. It's our 3rd running of Belize Bike Rally and we are happy that it's growing. We are seeing our number improving every year. Yesterday we registered 225 bikes. That's a 4-time improvement over prior years. Usually on Thursday we might see 50-60 bikes. Yesterday we had 225. So we are expecting maybe something around 300-400 more coming in today. It is growing and we are glad for that." Several riders from Central America came for the event.


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#511972 - 02/27/16 11:36 AM Re: Today's Belize News: February 27, 2016 [Re: Marty]
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Channel 5

Benguche Residents Make Grisly Discovery
A fetus believed to be between six and seven months, was pulled out from an overgrown lot in the Benguche area of Dangriga on Thursday afternoon. The unborn was reportedly [...]

Maya Island Air Flight Makes Emergency Landing
Maya Island Air Cessna Flight two, twenty-two with seven passengers on board was forced to abort its flight and make an emergency landing at the Municipal Airstrip just a couple [...]

Coast Guard Rescues Four Fishermen Adrift at Sea
A group of four fishermen, returning from camp near Colson Caye this morning, is lucky to have returned to safe harbor earlier today after drifting outside of the barrier reef.  [...]

Princess Group Invests in the MCC Grounds
The long neglected, long abandoned premier arena for football in Belize City is getting a new lease on life. Thanks to successive sports councils which seem to have been in [...]

Dangriga Taxi-man Shot and Left for Dead
A cab driver from Dangriga remains hospitalized at the KHMH tonight after being shot and left for dead along the Southern Highway on Thursday.  Darrel Lory, a well-known taxi man, [...]

First City Council and Now SSB Goes After Yhony Rosado
The vocal tour operator, Yhony Rosado, is having his own share of woes. He was on television recently making a public complain that he was being harassed over a new [...]

Belizean Honor Student Called to the Bar
A new attorney was called to the bar this morning; she is Shanidi Chell from Orange Walk Town who distinguished herself as an honor student at the Norman Manley Law [...]

Transport Department Weighs in on Fake Licenses
Since last week, News Five has been following reports of fake drivers’ licenses circulating in San Pedro. The Police in that municipality have made four arrests of persons who tried [...]

Insights Into Gang Culture in Belize Launches
Today, well-known activist and youth mentor Nuri Mohammed launched his book entitled “Insights Into Gang Culture in Belize” at the Leo Bradley Library. It’s a compilation of essays by Mohammed [...]

7 Confirmed Zika Cases in Barbados
In January of 2016, Barbados confirmed its first case of ZIKA virus. Today, there are seven confirmed cases. Our team, Duane Moody and Marleni Cuellar, in Barbados visited the Ministry [...]

FIFA Has New President
A new president was elected today to lead FIFA, the world football body. United Emirates Football Association’s General Secretary, Gianni Infantino won the first but had to go into a [...]

PNP Goes Down in Jamaica Elections
And on Thursday night, the Jamaica Labour Party defeated the People’s National Party and won thirty-three of the sixty-three seats in Parliament. Andrew Holness, the leader of the J.L.P.’s message [...]

Bikers Converge on Belize City
Since 2013 the Black Pearl Motorcycle Club has been coordinating the Belize Bike Rally, bringing together motorcycle aficionados from North, Central, and South America, hence the title “Meet in the [...]

Belizean Movie Will Be Launched this Weekend
If you’re one of those movie buffs who love gritty drama with a very real twist, you may want to take a look at a hit called Time is Money. [...]

CTV3

LOVE FM

Dangriga Crime News; Baby Fetus Found
Yesterday afternoon Police in Dangriga were called out after some residents made a gruesome discovery. We join our correspondent Harry Arzu who tells us about the discovery and more news from Dangriga. Last Sunday morning, Police were called out to Silk Grass Village in the Stann Creek District. According to Sergeant Wilfredo Perifino, the […]

Taiwan’s President to Visit Belize
Belize will be getting a Presidential visit in mid-March 2016 by MA Ying-Jeou, the Taiwanese head. Belize is one of several stops that the 65-year-old Taiwanese President will be making. President Ma Ying-Jeou will meet with Belize’s Prime Minister, Dean Barrow and will also be meeting with Guatemala’s recently elected President, Jimmy Morales as well […]

Maya Land Rights Commission Holds First Meeting with Maya Leaders
The first meeting that came out of the orders of the Caribbean Court of Justice ruling was held and described as being cordial in a release from the Maya Leaders of Belize. The meeting was held earlier today between the Toledo Alcalde Association/Maya Leaders Alliance and the Toledo Maya Land Rights Commission. The Maya Land […]

Opposition Party Speaks on MEK MI RICH and BTL
Earlier this week we told you of the ruling by Justice Courtney Abel as it relates to the lawsuit taken out by Curtis Swasey against the Belize Telemedia Limited. Following that ruling from the court, the People’s United Party issued a release with the headline, PUP Denounces Shady Happenings in the People’s Company. The release […]

Marijuana Laws to Be Amended
Exactly one year ago a media session was called by the Decriminalization of Marijuana Committee in Belize City. In that session presentations were made on the findings and recommendations that were submitted to Cabinet for review on February 26, 2015. Cabinet has since reviewed the report and have taken the decision to amend the laws. […]

Divers Pull Out from New River Search
Since Monday, authorities in Orange Walk and members of the Belize Coast Guard have been in search of a man that reports indicate had gone into the New River but never came out. Since the search began the divers and search team had found the body of 21-year-old Carlos Reyes and their efforts continued in […]

Coast Guard Rescues Four at Colson Caye
Colson Cay is an island and is located in Stann Creek District and is known to be the ideal location for fishing enthusiasts. It is uncertain whether the four individuals rescued from that area today were on a fishing trip but the quick response by the team of Belize Coast Guard men has allowed the […]

Local Pilot Aborts Flight to San Pedro
Yesterday evening, seven passengers of Maya Island Air flight 222, experienced a scary takeoff. The plane was departing from Belize City on its way to San Pedro when the Chief Pilot, Ali Urbina started to experience some technical difficulties in the air. This evening, Maya Island Air sent a release explaining the matter stating “Seconds […]

Allegations of Over-Pricing in Public Transportation
Complaints within the transportation industry are nothing new, as commuters have unending concerns with the quality of the service they are forced to endure. Sandhill Villager, Paul McCulluck is not happy with the bus companies tonight. He says some of the bus companies are overcharging passengers who are leaving Belize City to go to Ladyville […]

Three Days to Nat’l Youth Council Election
The National Youth Council elections are only three days away. Today we spoke to some of the Belize District candidates aspiring for the post of president, vice president, secretary, and Public relations; Stafin Duncan is vying for the post of President. Tyesha Estrada is also seeking the presidency, she says she brings a level of […]

PlusTV

Bound body found in Orange Walk Lagoon
On Wednesday February 25, Orange Walk police were tipped off about a body of an unidentified male person seen floating in the Lamanai Lagoon located in the Village of Indian Church in Orange Walk . Reports are that sometime around 10:30 Wednesday morning, a tourist out bird watching, saw the body...

GSU shoots father travelling with his family
Of late, there have been numerous reports of armed men in police or camouflaged clothing posing as police in order to commit crimes. Could that be the reason why a father travelling with his family did not stop when he saw camouflaged men with guns on an isolated stretch of road? The problem is, tho...

BDF uniforms stolen from PG Camp
As we’ve said, there have been numerous reports of armed men in police or camouflaged clothing posing as police in order to commit crimes. Well, someone just stole a whole bunch of BDF boots and uniforms from the Punta Gorda Camp. On Wednesday the 24th February 2016 the Quarter Master in charge of ...

GOB sued over malicious prosecution
A civil suit against the government for malicious prosecution is close to wrapping up in the courtroom of Supreme Court justice Sonya Young. The matter is being brought by Sharim Baeza who is being represented by attorney Philip Palacio. Sharim Baeza, then 16-years old, was accused of abetment and c...

Mexican villagers riot; Belizeans stranded at border
Late Wednesday evening, February 24th, Belizeans shopping in neighboring Chetumal, Mexico were unable to return to Belize for several hours as Mexican residents living in the Border town of Subteniente Lopez rioted on the highway. The Belizeans were caught in the confrontation between residents and ...

PUP discuss Cordel’s role in National Executive
This morning in Belize City, PUP Leader Johnny Briceño chaired his first meeting of the National Executive since returning to the party’s top post following his January 31 victory in Belmopan. At Independence Hall, the party discussed the plan for the first 100 days of Briceño’s leadership, as expla...

ComPol responds to International reports of Belize police inadequacies
The murder of ABC news executive producer Anne Swaney in Belize in January of this year followed a previous murder of a Canadian film maker weeks before. It caused a serious black eye on Belize’s image as a tourist destination and prompted a press release from the Belize Tourism Board promising clos...

The Reporter

Marking UBAD’s anniversary
Students, teachers, community activists and many others gathered at the Library of African and Indian Studies on Friday afternoon for an open day, celebrating the anniversary of the United Black Association for Development (UBAD). The event marked the 47th anniversary of UBAD’s formation, but also […]

John Briceno calls national executive meeting
John Briceno called the People’s United Party’s first National Executive meeting on Thursday, since he took over as the party’s new leader about a month ago. During the meeting Briceno presented his 100-day plan for the executive’s approval. PUP Chairman, Henry Usher shared with reporters […]

Get rid of deadly Gill nets! They are ruining our fisheries
Shocked at the evidence of sharks being slaughtered through gill-net fishing, Mar Alliance, a shark conservation non-governmental organization based on Ambergris Caye, has petitioned the government of Belize to ban the use of gill nets. The images showed fishermen with more than thirty sharks of […]

Cops will impose stricter rules for 2016 Ruta Maya weekend
Motorists who plan to use the stretch of the Philip Goldson Highway near the La Ruta Maya Belize River Challenge route are advised that the police will enforce traffic regulations along this highway for the duration of the four-day race. During a press briefing on […]

Shrimp industry back on track! 90 % of farms fully recovered
The shrimp industry in Belize is on its way to recovery from a bacterial disease which threatened the industry in March last year.. The impacts were at first confined, but extremely high temperatures caused the bacteria to spread across all but one farm. . Alvin […]

To Beat, or not to Beat! Students have mixed views
Ingrid Fernandez/ Staff Journalist Six children age 10 to 12, from the Calvary Temple Primary School in Belize City participated in a debate to discuss the issue of corporal punishment in schools this week. The atmosphere was heated as both teams offered compelling points in support and against whether teachers […]

World Bank gives $100 M to fight zika fever outbreak But virus could cost us billions
The World Bank has pledged more than $100 million to support the fight against the Zika virus, a mosquito-borne disease that now threatens all of south and Central and North America. A bite from the Ades Egypti mosquito can bring on the Zica fever, which […]

Caribbean countries discuss non communicable diseases
By Benjamin Flowers This week, representatives from countries all over the Caribbean met in Port of Spain Trinidad and Tobago, to discuss the regional repose to rising incidences of non-communicable diseases (NCD)s. The two-day workshop, held at the Hilton Hotel, review the results of an expert evaluation of the 2007 […]

Circle R Rice Done Right!
Circle R Products, doing business as Belize Food Supply, has cleared itself of all allegations that it has been producing contaminated rice, by rival importer, Jack Charles. In a press release on Wednesday, Circle R said it makes sure that all its products are grown, […]

Food vendor charged with Rockowski murder
Toledo Police have arrested Roy Jones, 48, a food vendor of Cattle Landing village, Toledo, with the murder of Thomas Paul Rockowski, 69, an American recluse who lived alone. Rockowski was at his home alone in the Hopeville area of Punta Gorda, on the night […]

Police looking for wanted man
Belize Police are looking for man accused of obtaining property by deception”. Alex Hernandez, is a 30 year old Belizean Tour Guide and sometimes bartender originally of Orange Walk Town. He is being accused of obtaining property by deception during a fraudulent transaction that took […]

Motorcycles crash! One rider dead!
A rare head-on collision between two motorcycles last Saturday evening on the George Price highway has left one driver dead and the other in an induced coma. The crash occurred between miles 18 and 19 in Sand Hill village around 7:40 p.m.. Bernard Churchill was […]

Public-sector agencies compete to boost customer satisfaction
“The public sector is, collectively, the world’s largest service provider. Any incremental improvement in public services positively impacts millions of people. The first step to ‘delivering the customer promise’ is to know your customers and their needs”—Wim Oosterom. The quote above, taken from Wim Oosterom – a former Global Sector […]

Fake OW drivers licenses surface in Isla Bonita
Marion Ali – Assistant Editor Officials from the Orange Walk Transport Department and its Town Hall are trying to figure out how a number of old driver’s licenses were forged and reproduced, and surfaced in San Pedro town this week. The fake licenses, according to Orange Walk Town Mayor Kevin […]

BTL and MMR in “SHADY” relationship, says Supreme Court
The decision by Supreme Court Justice Courtney Abel in the landmark intellectual property case of Swasey vs. Belize Telemedia Limited (BTL) and Mek Me Rich (MMR) Belize Ltd. took just over an hour to read out on Tuesday, February 22nd. It was in essence and in fact an overwhelming victory […]

Money in ‘Minutos’ – $74,108 for Trafficking in Humans
Despite the objections of Director of Public Prosecutions Cheryl Lyn Vidal, convicted human trafficker Estela Gonzalez, 64, was fined Tuesday instead of confined for the crime which carried a sentence of 8 years. As Justice Adolph Lucas imposed fines totaling $74,108 on Gonzalez, representatives of her employer Raul Magaña slipped […]

Editorial
No one in the media has seen the new Coastal Management Plan, but we can say with some confidence that if it does not contain a strong statement to abolish the use of gill nets in Belizean waters, it is not a complete and comprehensive management plan, and the European […]

Angry vendors block the border!
Marion Ali – Assistant Editor Traffic at the northern border with Mexico was blocked on Wednesday and Thursday on the Mexican side of the border at the Subteniente Lopez entrance to Chetumal, effectively causing a massive bottleneck with traffic, and forcing the commute into and out of Belize to come […]

Minor’s X-rated post on facebook highlights need for cyber laws
Ingrid Fernandez – Staff Reporter Pornographic pictures alleging to be those of a High School Student from the Cayo area which appeared on a Facebook site this week, was formally denounced by the Special Envoy for Women and Children, Cyber Bullying. A collage of three pictures, two of which showed […]

New Fuel Adjustment! Fourth time in two months
Drivers can expect to pay more for gas at the pumps, following the latest price increase approved by the Government of Belize this week. On Tuesday, Cabinet approved adjustments to the import duty on fuel to compensate for what the Ministry of Finance described as […]

Why Did the GSU Shoot Roberto Chan?
As we go to press, San Ignacio Police are taking statements and conducting an investigation into an officer-involved shooting which occurred at around 7:30 last night. One of those statements, hopefully providing critical information, will be taken from Roberto Chan, 28, a bullet from a GSU-held gun lodged in his […]

New book just launched in Belize
Nuri Muhammad launched his new book, “Insights Into Gang Culture In Belize” a short while ago in Belize City. The launching took place at the Leo Bradley Library, where Muhammad and other guest speakers gave reflections about the publication’s content, and its relevance to Belizean […]

Breaking Belize NewsPJ

High pressure influence maintains a cool northerly airflow
The National Meteorological Service of Belize is predicting variably cloudy and cool weather with little or no rainfall, except for a few periods of light rain along the South Coast. Winds will be blowing from the North-Northeast at 10-20 knots with occasional higher gusts […]

BELTRAIDE to host entrepreneurship workshop
The Belize Trade and Investment Development Service (BELTRAIDE) in collaboration with infoDev, a World Bank Group, will host a one day workshop with stakeholders to chart a way to foster an innovative entrepreneurship ecosystem in Belize. Starting at 8:30 a.m. inside ITVET’s dining room in Belize City on […]

Three detained for Silk Grass stabbing
Dangriga Police have detained three persons of interest from Silk Grass Village, Stann Creek District, who are pending investigation in connection to a stabbing incident which left 52- year-old Harrison Bowers in a critical condition at the Karl Heusner Memorial Hospital (KHMH). On Sunday, […]

New FIFA President elected
For the first time since 1974, a second round of voting was needed to determine a winner of the election for a new Fédération Internationale de Football Association (FIFA) President, but earlier today it was announced that 45-year-old lawyer, Gianni Infantino, has won by […]

New book on youth, violence and gang culture launched
Youth worker and media commentator Nuri Muhammad today presented his Insights into Gang Culture in Belize: Essays on Youth, Crime and Violence. It is his first-hand experience of working with a vulnerable segment of the population, which has evolved over a generation to something approaching […]

Blogs

Foodie Friday – Surf and Salad Recipe!
First I saw the Grilled Pineapple Jicama salad, I thought well I love pineapple, jicama, and salad so the combination must be great, I also saw Grilled Shrimp Kebabs, after reading the description I had no reservations I was going in. I went to Chef Marco who was happy to explain to me how he and the team make these dishes. First up was the Grilled Pineapple Jicama Salad. Grilled Shrimp Kebabs: Drizzled with coconut- pineapple coulis (thick sauce made from pureed/strained fruits and vegetables), organic vegetable quinoa, and roasted herb potatoes. Now you see why I chose this after reading the description, sounds good doesn’t it?

Best Belize Travel Photos of February 2016
A picture is worth a thousand words; this is especially true for anyone who loves to document their trip through photos. Thanks to the advancement of smartphones with superb photo-taking capabilities, and the popular photo-sharing app, Instagram, you can share your adventures with the world easily. There are thousands of travel photos taken in Belize alone, and we’ve decided to search Instagram for some of the best pictures snaps taken in the country. Here’s our list of the ‘Best Belize Travel Photographs’ for this month:

International Sourcesizz

8 Fascinating Facts About How and Why America Created Liberia
In 1816, the American Colonization Society (ACS) was created by Rev. Robert Finley (a former president of the University of Georgia) to appease two groups on opposing sides of the issue of the enslavement of Black people. In the early 1800s, the British were in the early stages of abolishing slavery and exiting the Atlantic slave trade. Finley and many whites from the elite class in the United States feared that the nation would follow the British with similar political action. One group of people (which included some abolitionists) wanted to give newly freed Black people an opportunity to return to Africa. The other side, which included slaveholders, did not foresee an integrated society and joined the ACS out of racist ideology. The American Colonization Society consisted of prominent American historical figures, including presidents James Monroe and James Madison. A nephew of George Washington, Bushrod Washington, was also involved. President Andrew Jackson was on the list as an organizer and politician Daniel Webster was involved as well. The irony here is that most of these men were part of the subjugation of Black people. Jackson was part of the slave-holding planter class, Webster was an enforcer and architect of the 1850 Fugitive Slave Act, and Washington actively sold enslaved Black people. Abolitionist James Forten saw this and warned free Blacks to not trust these men.

Las Vegas Taste of The Caribbean happening Saturday
Members of Las Vegas Latin Caribbean community are preparing to host and showcase Latin Caribbean Cuisine on February 27 at Boulder Plaza, located in the Arts District in downtown Vegas. The event starts from 11 a.m. to 6 p.m. Las Vegas Taste of the Caribbean will showcase and introduce residents of the city, as well as its visitors, to one of the best hidden secrets of the city Las Vegas: Latin, Caribbean and West Indian cuisine from countries that include Trinidad and Tobago, Jamaica, Belize, Colombia, Dominican Republic, Barbados, Mexico and Puerto Rico to name a few. The event, which will be held at an outdoor facility, will be free to the general public with purchase of the tasty and delicious regional food from the Latin Caribbean region.

Caribbean Economies Experience ‘Mixed Fortunes’ In ‘Topsy-Turvy’ External Environment
t Kitts and Nevis, Grenada and the Turks and Caicos Islands showed 4 percent growth, due to improved tourism arrivals and increased tourism related construction, while the region’s economic powerhouse Trinidad and Tobago grew by just 0.2 percent due to weaker oil and gas prices. That’s according to the Caribbean Development Bank (CDB)’s Economic Review for 2015 and Outlook for 2016, delivered on Wednesday at its headquarters in Barbados. The report struck familiar themes and again pressed for urgent, meaningful policy reform in the region that includes labour market reform, private sector led-growth, deeper regional integration and governments to act primarily as efficient regulators. “We could say that 13 of the 19 borrowing member countries (BMCs), we would expect them to grow faster in 2016 than in 2015, but two of our stronger credits Trinidad and Tobago and Suriname will experience negative growth in 2016. Interestingly all of the service dependent economies should grow, even if marginally…” said CDB president Dr William Warren Smith, while explaining the downturn in the commodity-driven economies. He described Caribbean economies as being in recovery mode at a time of great uncertainty in what is emerging as a somewhat “topsy-turvy economic environment”.

Central America's Top Festivals
The La Ruta Maya tops the list. Just one week away. Lobster Fest, Cacao Fest and Costa Maya are also on the list. LRM picture courtesy of Danny Chung. Festivals don't always have to mean being knee-deep in mud listening to Coldplay in the rain with a warm beer. Across the world, gatherings of all size, descriptions and reasons take place, bringing together cultural traditions and modern-day passions.

Videos

  • Swimming with the sharks in Northern Belize, 1min. Located just inside the reef, to the south of Ambergris Caye in Belize is "Shark-Ray Alley". This popular dive site is home to Nurse Sharks and Southern Sting Rays.

  • Belize entry to marina by boat, 4min.

  • One of Belize's Remarkable Popular Carnival, 6min. One of Belize remarkable popular carnival takes place during the month of September, which basically is one long month of Belizeans celebrating their Independence.

  • Belize Sunsets with Nicole S. Cooper, 6min.

  • A tour of the island of Caye Caulker in Belize, 5min. A tour of Caye Caulker by land and sea.

  • Belize Marijuana Laws, 2min.

  • Creative Kaos Documentary, 76min. Creative Kaos, the documentary about the making of Kurse a di Xtabai, is now out on Youtube. It's actually better than the movie, and worth a watch. "Documentary of the making of Belize first feature length film, 2012 curse of the Xitabai, all mainly all local cast and crew, directed and co-produced by late Matthew Klinck and co-produced by me. Rest in Peace my Friend."

  • Scuba Diving in Belize, 6min. Scuba Diving highlights from Belize.

  • Spearing Lionfish in Belize and feeding them to the Sharks, 3min. Highlights of Lion fish hunting off Caye Caulker, Belize.

  • Tropic Air flight from San Ignacio to Caye Caulker, Belize, 2min. A 12 passenger plan in Belize from Maya flats to Caye Caulker.

  • Sid - Bikepacking Belize, 9min.

  • Snorkeling in Belize (Mesoamerican reef), 3min.

  • Belize San Pedro Ambergris Caye Island - THE EEL, 7min. New Horizons Dive Trip Belize 2016 Day 5 Dive 2 Miranda and the Eel Belize San Pedro Ambergris Caye Island.

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