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#513018 - 04/12/16 11:51 AM Today's Belize News: April 12, 2016
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

Zika Situation in Belize – An Update
The Ministry of Health this past weekend conducted a field investigation based on the reported case of Zika by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and based on the provisional data they provided. The field investigation revealed two local potential cases, one in the Stann Creek District and the other in the Toledo District. A person of interest was also identified from the Cayo District. Samples were taken from the persons in the southern districts and will be sent to the Caribbean Public Health Agency (CARPHA) tomorrow for testing. CARPHA is our Regional Referral Laboratory in Trinidad. The investigation into these potential cases continues in order to determine the potential source(s). Although new and compelling factors may indicate the presence of Zika, the Ministry is still not able to declare that there is a first local transmission case of Zika in Belize.

Why I’m a fan of Verge of Umbra
We had no electricity growing up in my home village of San Antonio, Cayo; therefore our battery operated radio was under the control of the elders. The one radio station we all had access to was Radio Belize, and we would often listen to the morning show/news, followed by evening news. On Saturdays, cleaning days, the deejay would play ‘lively’ music that would get our bodies shaking and laundry, chores and more would get done faster by the ‘housewives’. On Sundays, we would listen to some sermon or the other, and as we drifted off to sleep (once the sun went down, we all prepared to go to bed), Patrick Jones would play country music. There was no metal – no hard rock. Nothing but whatever the deejays and very conservative management at the radio station deemed was right for our listening ears. Enter Verge of Umbra: I met bassist Lowell in Belize City while attending Junior College, and even though I spent three years there, but I never got to actually listen to him play. But I have sure made up for it now – in fact, I even get a tiny blink-and-you’ll-miss-it feature in their video The Meditation! I attended the filming, and the premiere, and finally, their grand album reveal! I have the CD, the shirt, the ticket stubs, and so many fond memories of my time spent with like-minded fans watching the guys do what they do best: make music!

How safe is San Pedro?
For many visitors, the normal process of investigating a potential travel destination allows them to make crucial decisions. Crime is a major element that may influence tourists to book their flight to another country if they feel their safety is at risk. The reality of crime is present wherever you travel in the world, but because tourism is the largest industry in Belize, many question if San Pedro’s recent increase in crimes will affect it. For that matter, is the increase of crimes in Belize affecting the island’s economy? Although crime in this country has the potential to create a negative image for Belize, Deputy Coastal Executive Officer Henry Jemmott of the San Pedro police department (SPPD), believes that tourists are not the main targets of these crimes. “I don’t think crime is affecting tourism. Recent crimes that have occurred are not directed at the tourism sector, but rather at the locals living in San Pedro. Tourists are not targets of these crimes, so they should not feel alarmed,” said Jemmott.

SPTC attempts to implement new regulation for Delivery trucks
In seeking to alleviate traffic congestion on the island, The San Pedro Town Council (SPTC) has launched an experimental project by regulating delivery trucks schedules. The experiment would apply to all large-vehicle deliveries within town core but it has not been well received by the business community. Despite opposition, the pilot project will begin on Monday, April 11th, and the SPTC is optimistic. The announcement was initially made on March 10th during The Reef Radio Morning Show. All businesses that conduct deliveries within town were requested not to do so after 7AM. In addition, a press release dated March 31st listed the different type of vehicles and equipment that would fall under the controlled delivery schedule. These include all construction equipment, backhoe, tractors, mixers, standard pick-up trucks, dump/container trucks, butane trucks, skytrak, freezer trucks, bobcats, and all other vehicles considered heavy equipment, including those for towing boats or vehicles.

Health Department; making sure eateries are safe
San Pedro is blessed with various restaurants, delis, shacks, vendors and bakeries serving mouth-watering food and treats. But has anyone ever questioned what happens behind closed doors? Though unpleasant to think of, there have been cases where food poisoning and other unsavory issues have arisen. When it comes to food safety, the Health Department in San Pedro is strict about its rules and regulations. The Public Health Bureau has standard policies where each food establishment must be inspected at least three times per year. Health Inspector for San Pedro and Ambergris Caye, Horris Patten, has been serving the island for seven months now. His main responsibility includes periodic health inspections, to ensure that the general public is safe from contamination, food-borne illnesses and diseases.

Ambergris Today

25 Years Ago - Raising Pigs in San Pedro
It used to be that every household in San Pedro used to raise pigs in their backyards. Why was this so? Very simple - In the 1960's and beyond, there was no meat or chicken sold in San Pedro. The diet was centered on fish and fish products. Therefore you can imagine that meat was something to celebrate - meats like venison or deer meat, turtle meat, and I am sorry to say, manatee meat which was considered to be half pork and half beef. I will admit that I ate a lot of manatee during my childhood and I found it to be a delicious plate of pork. Now back to my pig story. The pig was raised inside an eight by eight foot pen known as a "chiquero". The pig was fed with all the leftovers from the family's table -beans, tortillas, rice, and yes lots of fish. Whenever there was corn the pig also got its treat and then it was fed with garden herbs like verdolagas, chaya, as well as coconuts. It took about eight months to raise a pig to full size, two to three hundred pounds. The butchering of the hog was timed to special occasions like a birthday, wedding, or Christmas.

Comedy Night at Sandbar Raises over $5K for Island Charities
Sandbar Beachfront Hostel and Restaurant hosted ‘Comedy Nights for a Cause’ this past weekend as world-renowned comedic storyteller and 5-time Just for Laughs award nominee Jon Bennett from Australia came to San Pedro. While vacationing in San Pedro, international comedian Jon Bennett offered the management of Sandbar two free shows in order to raise funds for charities on the island. Brittney O’Daniel jumped at the opportunity and organized ‘Comedy Nights for a Cause’ that ended up being a huge success. Jon Bennett performed his amazing comedy sets that brought laughter and tears to a packed house on both Friday, April 8 and Saturday, April 9, 2016. Opening for both shows was local businessman and funnyman Ben Popik (The Truck Stop and Olde English Comedy) with the assistance of Joe Chung. One hundred percent of the proceeds from ticket sales will benefit the San Pedro Food Bank, and the Saga Humane Society, Ambergris Caye Elementary School's special needs program. Over $5,400 was raised and will be divided among the charities.

Morning assembly at Ambergris Caye Elementary School
Check out the two boys comparing their height!

Pic of the Week - Shark Ray Alley From Above and Below
As the sharks frolick down below, visitors to Shark Ray Alley, Hol Chan Marine Reserve, San Pedro, Ambergris Caye, Belize, anxiously gear up to plunge in the crystaline blue waters to swim with the sharks and sting rays. Oceana Belize took this amazing picture that social media celebrity Mark Dohner posted on his personal Instagram page as he visited Belize under the invitation from Oceana to come learn and share more about the organization's conservations efforts in the country.

Belize Set to Host CODICADER Games 2016
Belize has been selected and has accepted to hosts the 2016 CODICADER (The Central American Council of Sports & Recreation) Games from the July 6 – 11, 2016. This is the first time Belize will be hosting these games which will host over 1,000 guest/athletes for the sports events. The Games will host student athletes between the ages of 6 to 12 years, and the sporting disciplines will be table tennis, football, basketball and volleyball. The competitions will be held across the country simultaneously in Orange Walk, San Ignacio, Belmopan and Belize City.

Misc Belizean Sourcesmzz

Introduction to Bookkeeping & Accounting ( Part 1 Accounting Series)
Date of Workshop: April 14th, 2016. PRICE: $60.00. Location: BELTRAIDE Office, Belmopan. Time: 9am to 12pm - 1pm to 4pm. We introduce you to the essential skills and concepts of bookkeeping and accounting. To start with you will gain some practical skills in numeracy including learning about rearranging simple equations as well as some important calculator skills. Afterwards, you will gain knowledge and understanding of the fundamental principles that underpin bookkeeping and accounting. You will learn the time-honored rules of double-entry bookkeeping and also how to prepare a trial balance and the two principal financial statements: the balance sheet (also known as the statement of financial position) and the profit and loss account (also known as the income statement)introduction to bookkeeping and accounting, we introduce you to the essential skills and concepts of bookkeeping and accounting. To start with you will gain some practical skills in numeracy including learning about rearranging simple equations as well as some important calculator skills. Afterwards, you will gain knowledge and understanding of the fundamental principles that underpin bookkeeping and accounting. You will learn the time-honored rules of double-entry bookkeeping and also how to prepare a trial balance and the two principal financial statements: the balance sheet (also known as the statement of financial position) and the profit and loss account (also known as the income statement).

Caye Caulker: Anybody know this dog?
We have established that it is NOT Brittany and Wills. Tourists found him south side somewhere. Bad leg. Needs antibiotics. We have him at CCHS for now. Please share this..... Thanks - very sweet temperament.

Splashers: Sign up to paint this beautiful Dolphin at this weeks paint party
Come paint with us "Rainbow Dolphin" this Thursday at crazy Canucks. See you there! Starts: April 14, 2016, 2:00 PM

High School Innovation Challenge
Watch Channel 5's "Open Your Eyes" on Wednesday April 13th to listen to Caye Caulker Ocean Academy students speak about the High School Innovation Challenge they won last year with their project "Hire Belize". Last year's theme was Youth Unemployment; this year's challenge is "Innovation and Education". Heidi Curry, Buddy and Ashtasia will join Ministry of Education representatives for the discussion. The show airs live at 6:30am as well as again in the evening, and live stream at mms://200.32.198.94/oye

Press Release #2 - Zika Situation in Belize
The Ministry of Health this past weekend conducted a field investigation based on the reported case of Zika by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and based on the provisional data they provided. The field investigation revealed two local potential cases, one in the Stann Creek District and the other in the Toledo District. A person of interest was also identified from the Cayo District. Samples were taken from the persons in the southern districts and will be sent to the Caribbean Public Health Agency (CARPHA) tomorrow for testing. CARPHA is our Regional Referral Laboratory in Trinidad. The investigation into these potential cases continues in order to determine the potential source(s). Although new and compelling factors may indicate the presence of Zika, the Ministry is still not able to declare that there is a first local transmission case of Zika in Belize.

Belize Social Investment Fund & Corozal Town Council Inaugurates Rehabilitated Town Market Annex & Streets for Corozaleños
The rehabilitated Corozal Town Market Annex and surrounding streets built by the Government of Belize at an estimated cost of $298,757.30 and $390,543.00 respectively through a loan from the World Bank under the Belize Municipal Development Project (BMDP) with counter-part funding of three-per cent by the Corozal Town Council was officially inaugurated on Friday, April 8, 2016. The market facility occupies over 220 square meters. This will create opportunities for vendors to foster and enhance their livelihoods, serve as a central meeting point for the people of Corozal and surrounding communities to exchange goods, produce, ideas, interact and create meaningful opportunities in the pursuit of continued socio-economic development. Vendors and shoppers will also enjoy the convenience of 15 market stalls due to the ambiance of a more spacious, pleasant and safer environment for all. In addition, the completion of the streets infrastructure project will also contribute to the transformation of the market for a healthier environment and enhancement of the aesthetics of the market.

Presentation of Credentials to the Governor General of Belize
Four ambassadors presented their credentials to the Governor General of Belize H.E. Sir Colville Young today, April 11, 2016 at the Belize House in the City of Belmopan. H.E. Aitzaz Ahmed, Ambassador of the Islamic Republic of Pakistan; H.E. Yusra Khan, Ambassador of the Republic of Indonesia; H.E. Ibrahim Obeidat, Ambassador of the Hashemite Kingdom of Jordan; and H.E. Mohamed Saadat, Ambassador of Palestine, all expressed their pleasure in being a representative of their countries in Belize and extended warm greetings to Belize from their respective governments. Each ambassador conveyed their country’s intention to continue to develop and maintain strong associations with Belize. The Governor General graciously welcomed the ambassadors and received their credentials.

Passing of Pastor Nadir Ruiz
Mayor Daniel Guerrero, the San Pedro Town Council and Staff would like to extend its deepest condolences to the Ruiz family & friends on the passing of Pastor Nadir Ruiz. May his soul rest in peace. Pastor Nadir Ruiz was the head pastor of the Seventh Day Adventist churches in Ambergris Caye.

Channel 7

Carpenter Killed In Valley Of Peace
A man was found floating in the river yesterday near the Young Bank area of Camalote. 39 year old Carpenter Luis Ortiz was last seen on Saturday night and when he didn't come home yesterday morning, his family got very worried, and that is when they got the dreaded call about his murder. The man who was with him and escaped being killed told Courtney Weatherburne about the attack: Courtney Weatherburne reporting: This Belmopan resident is lucky to be alive. He was dragged out of his friend's vehicle, badly beaten and thrown here near the Roaring Creek Cemetery. When his attackers drove off, he got up and dragged himself to a nearby mechanic who called the police. But this brutal beat down didn't start here at the cemetery, neither did it end there. That survivor - who wished to conceal his identity - was at La Cabana with his friend Luis Ortiz. They were drinking and hanging out from late Saturday night into Sunday. But around 3 yesterday morning, Ortiz told him to that he was ready to leave the club. And that is when another one of their friends along with 3 other men hopped into Ortiz's car. Trusting those 3 was his biggest mistake.

Cops Have Six Detained
Now while that story seems to be quite straightforward, the police can't confirm many details at this point. They outlined what they have so far. Courtney Weatherburne: "We understand that when they were leaving the Cabana, 3 other persons left with them in the vehicle. Tell us about those 3 persons." Insp. Stephanie Grinage, Dep. Commissioner - Belmopan Division: "We still are not certain. like I said, the investigation is still ongoing and we are still not certain if they left from Cabana, so we are trying to ascertain exactly what transpired prior to them reaching at that location in Roaring Creek." Courtney Weatherburne: "The information so far is that the young man is left at the cemetery. He was beaten and left for thrown in the cemetery. What happened after that?" Insp. Stephanie Grinage, Dep. Commissioner - Belmopan Division: "I cannot say what happened after that. Like I said, the investigation is ongoing and we are trying to establish what exactly transpired. We know that another call was received that there was a car in the river by Young Bank area. The car belonged to Luis Ortiz and it was found in that are in the morning. So the police are still trying to put together the pieces and see exactly what transpired on that night of the incident."

ZIKA In Belize?: Definitely-Maybe
Two possible cases of ZIKA have been found in southern Belize - and there may be one more in the west. That's what the Ministry of Health says after field investigations conducted this weekend in response to the case of Zika reported by the Centers for Disease Control in Atlanta. The two possible cases come from the Toledo sand Stann Creek Districts, while a person of interest has been identified in the Cayo District. Samples were taken from the two in the south and will be sent to the Caribbean Public Health Agency known as CARPHA in Trinidad. But, still the ministry says, quote, "new and compelling factors may indicate the presence of Zika, the Ministry is still not able to declare that there is a first local transmission case of Zika in Belize." And for right now, it seems the Centers For Disease Control is holding off on issuing a travel advisory for Belize. All other countries in Central Americ and Mexico are on that list. The Ministry of health does warn that Pregnant women and women considering getting pregnant are asked to take precautions and try to avoid mosquito bites.

A Major Win For Allyson As Court Criticizes Gun Law
For the past 6 months, Belize City Resident Allyson Major has been suing the Government and officers of the Gang Suppression Unit. He and his attorney, Anthony Sylvestre, say he was a prime example of everything wrong with Firearms Amendment Act of 2010. As viewers will remember, that law was passed as the Barrow Government's "get tough on crime" measure. It imposed collective responsibility for individual wrongdoing - where entire families were detained for any illegal firearm found in their house. That's what caught Allyson Major in April of 2012, when he was arrested along with 6 other persons. Even though he was not present at the time of the search he was charged and remanded for 38 days. He fought the charges and won in November 2013. Major then sued the government and Justice Michelle Arana heard his case, the first suit against the Firearms Amendment Act of 2010. His attorney, Anthony Sylvestre, argued that the law violates the citizen's constitutional right to his freedom. He said that the law shifts the burden of proof from innocent until proven guilty, to guilty until proven innocent.

Police Find Gun Which May Have Clues About Merkel's Murder
18 year old Ladyville resident Merkel Pitts died from gunshot injuries on Friday, and Belize rural police say they clamped down on the village over the weekend to prevent a recurrence. Mobile and foot patrols were deployed primarily in the Marage Road/Milpa Area of Ladyville where both Pitts and Rene Chavarria were killed in the last month. And it paid off with this gun. On Saturday evening at 4:15, the Rural Response Team searched in some bushes in the Japan Area where they found a Ruger P95 9 millimeter pistol without any serial number and four live rounds. Police believe it could be linked to one of the recent murders and they have sent it to the Forensic Laboratory for ballistic tests. In that same area, Police found two parcels of suspected cannabis weighing a total of 7 ounces, which was labeled as found property.

Cops Say Clayton Almost Killed Douglas
29 year-old Douglas Flores Jr., a Belize City resident, had to be rushed to the hospital for emergency medical treatment after a man chopped him on the neck. The man who police believe did it is Clayton White, and he's in jail tonight. The incident happened on Saturday, and according to Police, Flores reported to them that he and White got into an altercation. Flores said that White left, and when he returned, he came with a machete, attacked him, and chopped him several times on the neck. Well, police have investigated the report, and they've since charged Clayon White, a laborer of Cran Street, with the offences of attempted murder, dangerous harm, and use of deadly means of harm. He was arraigned before Senior Magistrate Sharon Frazer, and due to the nature of the offences, he was remanded into custody until May 27.

Faber Wins Small Victory At UDP NPC
The UDP held a National Party Council meeting on Saturday - where the time and place for the much-anticipated first deputy convention was set. It will be held on May 29th at the ITVET, but that that's only half the story coming out of Saturday's meeting. The bigger, more consequential outcome has to do with the delegates list. Those are the 600 or so UDP supporters who will vote for the First Deputy. Ultimately that small group will determine who will take up the number 2 spot in the UDP. It should be straightforward enough, but reports suggest that John Saldivar wanted a new delegates list for the Deputy Leaders convention, while Patrick Faber wanted to stay with the existing list. It went to a vote on Saturday and Faber's supporters won that vote by a comfortable margin of 63 to 51. Faber told the media on Saturday that the outcome favors him:.. Reporter: "We are getting sources that that puts you at a great advantage with keeping this delegate list. Do you feel that way?" Hon. Patrick Faber, Running for UDP 1st DPL: "Well from the campaigning so far I do believe so and I think that my colleagues who were supporting John really were feeling the pinch. They understood clearly that those delegates in fact were leaning towards me - many of their constituencies and so what really was afoot was a move to try to remove those delegates, so that they don't get to support me. But you remember that these were the same delegates who went to Dangriga on March 20th and in fact put in place the highest offices of the party. Those delegates were in fact then were registered for a period of time and you can't just change them 3 weeks later and the NPC in its wisdom today supported that."

Boots Puts His Foot Down For Saldivar
And while Faber had his political "swag" going on Saturday, today Saldivar notched one more feather in his cap. That's because Anthony "Boots" Martinez today threw his support behind the Belmopan candidate. Last week he held out on the media, telling us that he was still weighing his options - but today he called all the sations to his office to say that he had decided. And his choice is. Hon. Anthony "Boots" Martinez, Member for Port Loyola: "Well it's been a long thought and looking on the history of my involvement in the party, I think that I like the calm maturity of John Saldivar. I like him abilities to talk to people and talk with people. I like his intellectual capacity and I like his interaction in terms of dealing with the ordinary people and sports. I am very much some aspects the sports lane dynamo was full fletch behind football and so I and John Saldivar, we have been in the trenches politically for a while and I think that John Saldivar have the ability to serve in my humble opinion as the 1st deputy party leader."

OWN Chairman Writes In Memory of Monchie
And while there are shifting sands in the UDP as alliances are reshaping in real time, the PUP is going through its own transition as pockets of opposition to John Briceno's leadership are appearing. We today received a copy of a letter dated April 7th where the executive of ousted Treasure Monchie Cervantez is objecting to the way he was removed from the executive. The letter signed by the constituency chairman for Orange Walk north calls it unilateral and unconstitutional. He says, quote, "if the removal of Mr Cervatez is so desired, is should be done constitutionally and respectfully." As we told you Cervantez was removed and replaced by attorney Chris Coye.

Collet Canal Consternation
A couple of south side food vendors were up in arms today when they were forced by police officers to take down their food shed on West Collet Canal. The owner of the business Ishtar Williams is licensed by City Council to operate as a business peddler. She is also licensed by the Ministry of Health as a food handler. On the grounds of these two licenses Williams and her husband opened a small food stall at the corner of Queen Square Primary School. It isn't much, but it is something that gets the young couple by. In addition to that they believe it is also a way of giving back to their community - what with their $2 and $3 dollars lunch they sell to school kids every day. But today all of that changed. This morning their operations were disrupted by men in uniform who ordered them to dismantle their small shed. In bitter remorse, they recounted their story.

Panama Papers Proponents Back Off Ashcroft
A week ago, we told you about the Panama Papers. It's a leak of 1.5 million financial and legal records from a Panamanian law firm known as Mossack Fonseca and Company. IT shows how approximately 140 financially and politically well connected persons hid their wealth in offshore tax havens. It's the biggest news right now on the international scene because the International Consortium of Investigative Journalists say that these documents reveal a global network of tax-evasion, which, quote, "enables crime, corruption and wrongdoing, hidden by secretive offshore companies." Belize was named as one of the 50+ countries connected to the scandal, and the I-C-I-J SAID, and purported to show that billionaire businessman Michael Ashcroft was implicated. Well, it appears that they've had to walk way back from allegation since the leak went live about 10 days ago. We received a press release today from Caribbean Investments Holdings Limited, an Ashcroft Allied company, which strongly asserts the I-C-I-J got it all wrong. It appears that they have because when the leak was published, they had this posting on Ashcroft. When we checked back on the Panama Papers today, the Ashcroft link and the Belize link had been taken completely down; it was nowhere to be found.

World Heritage Sites In Danger in Belize
The World Wildlife Fund has released a comprehensive report on the effects of development on World Heritage sites. The official launch of the report was made last week on the 6th of April and it encompasses 229 heritages and 96 countries- including Belize. Coming out of the report is that half of the World Heritage sites are threatened by development; and Belize is no exception. Efforts from Oceana and other conservation groups have managed to get Government to place ban on offshore oil drilling on portions of the World Heritage Sites in Belize- but not all of it. Today WWF'S local office launched the Belize portion of that report. The Global Campaign Manager for WWF International presented some of the findings on that report at a forum at Radisson this morning. Valentina Montanaro, Global Campaign Manager - WWF International: "The report is being received very well across the world. I think because it has a clear direct message which is we must change the way we look at nature, because nature is not only something we need to protect. It's actually something that can protect us and it's an economic opportunity. So we are seeing a trend in which we are going to the end of the world to find more resources and as a consequence of these, some of the most precious are increasingly threaten by harmful industrial activities including extracted like oil, mining, gas and large scale infrastructure as well. We are finding that 90% of world heritage sites provide jobs and contribute to the economies through tourism, recreation and natural resources and also two third of these natural world heritage sites are important for provision of water, which is going to be a massive issue in the coming years."

Strange Sea Serpent In Belize?
And a creature that may be well familiar with the world heritage sites is the oarfish. It's a little known, rarely seen fish that looks like a huge sea serpent. It usually operates in the greatest ocean depths at one thousand meters and below, but there have been sightings of this strange creature around Placencia recently! That's right, a creature that looks a lot like an oarfish - a portion of which can be seen in this photograph - has been sighted in the Placencia lagoon and near Placencia Caye. The sightings started in late 2015, and one was reported as recently as Easter. Now, as this video form Mexico which has been posted on youtube shows, some times they come into shallow areas like lagoons, but usually when they are ill. The oarfish is a giant boney fish and poses no danger to humans as it feeds mainly on plankton. So, if you see one near Palcencia , behold, snap a picture, but please don't harm it.

Ugly case of Molestation In Griga
There is a ghastly report of child abuse coming from Dangriga. A 15 year old girl with Cerebral Palsy was sexually molested by her stepfather. The mother reported to police that on Thursday March 31st she came home and noticed her daughter wasn't her usual self. She asked her daughter what was wrong and that is when she explained that whenever the babysitter would leave, her stepfather would touch her breast, vagina and buttocks. Now this case is very sensitive because as we told you, the young girl has cerebral palsy and she can't speak well or express herself properly so police still can't get all the information they need in terms of what exactly the stepfather did to her or how many times it happened. The case then gets further complicated in court because police needs someone who is qualified and trained to understand and communicate with cerebral palsy patients and be able to record proper statements - and that is the major setback in this case. The stepfather can't be detained until the police finds that qualified person. So Dangriga police are calling on the Human Development Department or whoever can assist them in this very sensitive case. For now the mother has gotten a protection order against the stepfather.

A Market For Corozal
The rehabilitated Corozal Town Market was re-opened for business last week Friday. The Social Investment Fund has been overseeing the upgrading of the market which came at an estimated cost of almost 299 thousand dollars. The project was funded by loan from the World Bank under the Belize Municipal Development Project. Shoppers and vendors can now make use of 15 new market stalls and a compound which spans 220 square meters. The Mayor of the Town was one of the main speakers at last Friday's opening ceremony. Here's what he had to say:

Finnegan, No Gone
If you're a political observer, you might have guessed by now that the rumours of Michael Finnegan's retirement are greatly exaggerated. Sure, the 6 term UDP Mesopotamia representative may have strung his nephew Shyne Barrow along for a week or so, but, anyone who knows Finnegan knows that it ain;t over till it's over. On Saturday he told the media, he's not ready to go just yet:. Hon. Michael Finnegan, Area Rep., Mesopotamia: "Why everybody wants to retire me for? That is up to me." Reporter: "But did you not announced earlier that you would not be seeking re-election?" Hon. Michael Finnegan, Area Rep., Mesopotamia: "I never did ever said that. Everybody said that I was retiring. That is a matter for me and my family and when that time comes, if I will do that the public will know. In the meantime I am in the Mesopotamia Division every day and I am doing what I have been doing for the last 30 years and when that change, you will be the first to know my love."

Who Will Walk In Boots' Shoes?
And while Finnegan apparently isn't going anywhere, Anthony "Boots" Martinez is heading for the exits, and quick! The Port Loyola representative who just barely hung on in the last general election, today told the media who his successor is. Hon. Anthony "Boots" Martinez, Member for Port Loyola: "I have looked on several people to be successors. I have asked a couple people if they were interested and so I definitely have in mind at least - let me say this and I want to at least at this point, I have in mind Councilor Dean Samuels for this position. I am supporting him as of now for trying to vie to be the next representative of Port Loyola and then I want to be clear, as representative, now my term comes to an end when there is the dissolution of the House. Until then I am the representative and I will be vigilant in terms of service to my people and everything. So it's not a thing that I am leaving the people. Whatsoever is the program, I will do. Because I will guarantee the party that this seat will be delivered to the party the next election."


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#513019 - 04/12/16 11:52 AM Re: Today's Belize News: April 12, 2016 [Re: Marty]
Marty Offline

Channel 5

CDC Notice Prompts Local Field Investigation for Zika in Belize
The Ministry of Health issued a release late this evening on zika which until now has been detected in Central America, the Caribbean and throughout the rest of the region. [...]

A Weekend Murder in Roaring Creek, 6 Men Arrested
Six persons are tonight in custody following the murder of a Belmopan resident. Luis Ortiz and Juan Gonzales were ambushed inside Ortiz vehicle and taken to an area near the [...]

A Stepfather is Accused of Sexually Violating his Mute Daughter
We report on all manner of unpleasant allegations made in the criminal arena, but there are some which truly turn the stomach. Tonight, Stann Creek Police have allegedly detained one [...]

Ambassador Assad Shoman Discusses Guatemala Issue at O.A.S. Meeting
Last Friday, our News Five team camped out under a “hammans” tree outside O.A.S. Office in the adjacency zone for hours. Inside were top diplomats from Belize and Guatemala, Foreign [...]

Will Guatemala Change Its Position on Sarstoon?
A resolution within days may be a matter easier said than done. Guatemala maintains that the Sarstoon is theirs, and in a recent diplomatic note stated that they will continue [...]

Caribbean Investment Holdings Refutes Claim in Panama Papers
By now, most would have heard of the controversial Panama Papers, a trove of documents leaked by the Washington-based International Consortium of Investigative Journalists (ICIJ).  In a nutshell, the documents [...]

A New U.D.P. Deputy Leader will be Chosen on May 29th—Does Faber Have an Edge?
The date for a special convention to choose the First Deputy Leader of the United Democratic Party is set.  Delegates from across all thirty-one constituencies are expected to cast their [...]

Patrick Faber Discusses Campaign Funding
Since both candidates threw their hats into the ring following Gaspar Vega’s departure as first deputy leader, several area representatives have come out in full support of their candidate of [...]

Faber Does the Math in Orange Walk, Will Gapi’s Support be a Factor?
While a majority of the area representatives and standard bearers have chosen their candidate, there is one wild card remaining.  That person seems to be Orange Walk North Area Representative [...]

Who Said Finnegan is Retiring from Mesop Politics!
Still on political news…Is perennial Mesopotamia Area Representative Michael Finnegan throwing in the towel?  In the wake of his November fourth victory in the 2015 General Elections, Finnegan’s nephew Jamal [...]

Boots Comes Out in Favor of John Saldivar
While Finnegan has declared his unwavering support for Patrick Faber, Port Loyola Area Representative Anthony ‘Boots’ Martinez is flexing his political muscle in the other corner.  This afternoon, he called [...]

A Straightforward Decision was Made to Support Saldivar’s Candidacy
With the convention date set for May twenty-ninth, both candidates are canvassing delegates in the thirty-one constituencies.  That being the case, it isn’t farfetched that Patrick Faber would have approached [...]

Victor Sagastume is Busted for Cocaine Possession
A Guatemalan national residing in San Martin Village, Belmopan is facing five criminal offenses tonight. It all went downhill for Victor Sagatume after police searched and found on him point [...]

Bus Driver Arraigned for Manslaughter After Deadly RTA in Hattieville
Almost a month ago, a cyclist of the Hattieville area was crushed by a bus. Today, thirty-four year old Hattieville resident and bus driver, Franco Audinett was arraigned before Senior [...]

Sustainable Development Goals, the Path to 2030
From 2000 to 2015 the world focused on the Millennium Development Goals – a structured framework which nations used to chart a path to development in areas like health, education, [...]

Boots and His Ministry Support Belize City Curfew
The issue of imposing a nine o’clock curfew for anyone below the age of eighteen years has gained traction in all corners, including the Ministry of Human Development and Social [...]

Who is Boots Grooming to Take Over in Port Loyola?
Deputy Mayor Dean Samuels, is he preparing to succeed “Boots” Martinez in Port Loyola?  While the incumbent area representative has announced his retirement from electoral politics at the end of [...]

APAMO Retreats to Discuss Direction of Co-management
Over the weekend, membership of the Association of Protected Areas Management Organizations, APAMO, participated in a working retreat to take a critical look at the role and direction necessary as [...]

Ashley Loses Her Fight with Cancer
On Sunday, at around one p.m., Ashley Rebecca Walker died at home, her mother Kayla by her side. She had been diagnosed with acute lymphoblastic leukemia in September 2014, shortly [...]

Where is Kotch?
Where is Albert Johnson? The family of the woodcarver and father of two teenage daughters became concerned after a group of police officers came to their home in Belmopan, demanding [...]

Football and Basketball Stats with James Adderley
Good evening I’m James Adderly and this is Sports Monday.   The 4 team playoffs in the PLB Closing season got off with a bang on Saturday with all 4 [...]

CTV3

Corozal Second Murder Remains Unsolve
Tonight Corozal Police is nowhere close to solving the murder of 51 year old cane farmer Gregorio Abel Espinoza who became the second murder victim for the district. The body of the deceased was discovered on Friday April 8th at around 10:00 in the morning in the area of Santa Rosa located behind the Village of Chan Chen in the Corozal District. According to authorities upon arrival at the scene they saw the lifeless body of Espinosa lying face down near the banks of the New River with multiple pellet wounds on right hand side of chest and what appeared to be a bullet wound to the left lower rib cage. A post mortem conducted on the body of Espinosa concluded that he died as a result of multiple gunshot wounds to the thoracic region. The body presented a total of 2 gunshots…1 to the right side around the shoulder area and the other on the lower left rib cage.

CARICOM Concern About Caribbean Countries Involvement In The Panama Papers
The ‘Panama Papers’ leaked over 11.5 million documents from Mossack Fonseca, a Panamanian Law Firm that has about forty offices across the globe. The documents show how the law firm has assisted many companies in hiding money so as to refrain from paying their taxes since the years 1970 to 2015. As a result of the leaked documents, approximately 214,000 offshore companies were listed as ‘tax haven’ businesses and among the long list are a number of Caribbean countries including Belize. According to reports by the International Consortium of Investigative Journalists, Lord Michael Ashcroft’s offshore company known as the Belize Corporate Services began using Mossack Fonseca in an effort to provide shell corporations for clients since the year 2006. The reports also indicate that the Belize Bank International (also under the BCS) established a new firm called MF and Company Limited with three of the Panama firm’s founders as the owners. The new firm allegedly worked along with BCS in establishing other companies and acting as registered agents here in Belize. This is an implication which Lord Michael Ashcroft, the billionaire Belizean investor, has denied. Ashcroft, through a spokesman, said the allegations are entirely false saying, and we quote “These allegations are completely untrue, and the events as described never happened. The records upon which you claim to rely for those allegations either do not exist or have been falsified,”

Ambassadors Present Credentials To Governor General
Today four Ambassadors presented their credentials to the Governor General of Belize His Excellency Sir Colville Young. The four ambassadors namely; His Excellency, Aitzaz Ahmed, Ambassador of the Islamic Republic of Pakistan, His Excellency Yusra Khan, Ambassador of the Republic of Indonesia: His Excellency; Ibrahim Obeidat, Ambassador of the Hashemite Kingdom of Jordan and His Excellency, Mohamed Saadat, Ambassador of Palestine all expressed their pleasure in being a representative of their countries in Belize and extended warm greetings to Belize from their respective governments. Each ambassador conveyed their country’s intention to continue to develop and maintain strong associations with Belize while the Governor General graciously welcomed them and received their credentials.

Zika Suspected Cases In Belize
Last week we told you about an American couple who tested positive for the Zika virus after spending approximately six days in Belize. Following this report the Ministry of Health along with a team from the vector control unit, Public health department and the Epidemiology Department conducted field investigations over the weekend to determine the possibility of local transmission of the disease. Late this evening the Ministry issued a release where they report that their field investigations have revealed two potential cases of the virus, one in Stann Creek and one in Toledo. A third person of interest was also located in the Cayo District. According to the release, samples were taken from the persons in the southern districts and will be sent to the Caribbean Public Health Agency (CARPHA) tomorrow for testing.

LOVE FM

BEL Explains Countrywide Blackouts
Collapsed systems in the national electricity grid have been cited as the reason for last night’s multiple power outages. The first loss of power happened just after eight o’clock in all districts which the Belize Electricity Limited says was due to a faulty protection device in Xulha, (SHUL-HA) Mexico. Two more power failures occurred and […]

Troubles Brew in the North for PUP
The last bit of news we brought to you on the People’s United Party and the inner workings of the blue and white tent was that there were changes being made to the National Executive. Cordel Hyde was installed as one of the deputy party leaders while Ramon ‘Munchi’ Cervantes was stripped of his post […]

Ombudsman Is Hopeful for Improved Relations
One of the recent complaints coming out of the National Assembly was the lack of attention being given to the recommendations of the Ombudsman on several matters. Senator Mark Lizarraga raised the matter of the Ombudsman report that was tabled in the last sitting of the Senate where the recommendations of additional training and equipment […]

Middle East Ambassadors Meet Governor General
This morning the Governor General of Belize, His Excellency Sir Colville Young, welcomed four new Ambassadors to Belize from the Middle East to Belize House in Belmopan. The new ambassadors to Belize are His Excellency Aitzaz Ahmed, Ambassador of the Islamic Republic of Pakistan; His Excellency. Yusra Khan, Ambassador of the Republic of Indonesia; His […]

Man murdered in Capital City
Belmopan Police continue their investigations into the murder of a resident of Maya Mopan. Correspondent Fem Cruz has the story. Fem Cruz: On Sunday April 10 37 year old Lewis Eswardo Ortiz a resident of Shalpek Street Maya Mopan Belmopan was reported missing by family members. According to the father of the missing […]

Sustainable Goals are Everyone’s Business
As we told you earlier in our newscast there was the start of a two day workshop on the global goals for sustainable development. The event which has the participation of various sectors in Belize ranging from agriculture to fisheries and urban planning to climate change comes with several objectives. Facilitator of the workshop, Dr […]

Figueroa and Martinez for Saldivar as Deputy
In our first segment we told you of the Saldivar versus Faber event that is ongoing in the United Democratic Party. Most of the standard bearers have come out to say who they are endorsing and tonight, we bring you two more endorsements in favour of John Saldivar. Area Representative for Cayo North, Dr Omar […]

A Replacement for Boots in Port
With Minister Anthony Boots Martinez preparing to wrap up his political career, he does have his eyes out for a replacement and it seems that he just may have found one in the name of Dean Samuels. ANTHONY MARTINEZ “ Love News contacted Samuels following our interview with Minister Martinez and while he was unavailable […]

Are Ministers Finnegan and Martinez Retiring from Politics?
When Collet Representative Patrick Faber launched his candidacy on March 21 for the UDP’s First Deputy Leader, Minister Michael Finnegan had made a jest, basically indicating that he has plans in continuing in politics in the Mesopotamia division. It did raise some questions as in previous newscasts we had done interviews with both Shyne Barrow […]

Sustainable Development Goals for 2030
There are 17 goals on sustainable development that every country from around the globe has committed to achieving by the year 2030. With each country being unique, several of the goals may not be applicable to all and with that in mind, representatives from various sectors ranging from Fisheries, Forestry, Urban Planning, Agriculture, Climate Change […]

PlusTV

Murder in Santa Rosa
The dead body of a male individual was found in the area of Santa Rosa located behind the Village of Chan Chen in the Corozal District. Reports are that the cane farmer, whose name was not released by our news time, was found this morning with gunshot wounds to his chest on the Rio Hondo River bank ...

Ladyville teenager shot and killed
An 18 year old youth from Ladyville died while undergoing treatment at the KHMH following an attempt on his life last night. He has been identified as Merkel Pitts and investigators informed that he was shot three times to the body. Officer Commanding Ladyville, Inspector Juanito Cocom has the deta...

U.S. couple who visited Belize positive for Zika
There are not one but two apparent cases of Zika originating in Belize. The Ministry of Health today confirmed the devastating news in a telephone conversation with other media, following yesterday’s press release in which U.S. authorities at the Center for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC)...

Highway accident leaves two injured
There was an accident on the George Price Highway sometime around 9 0’clock Friday morning. A motorcycle collided head on into a white Toyota Hilux Government vehicle in Ontario Village. The driver of the Hilux, 50 year old Ervin Griffith, says he was headed from Central Farm to his work place at th...

6 persons arrested after drug search
Six persons have been arrested as the result of a drug search conducted in San Pedro. On the 7th of April, San Pedro Police conducted a search in an apartment in the D.F.C area of San Pedro Town. When they arrived at the apartment, Alex Espat and Christian Espat along four minors were there. In the ...

Belize City resident detained for firing firearm in public
Police have detained Michael Williams Jr. Pending investigations for discharging a firearm in public. On Friday the 8th of April at around 12:25 a.m., shots were heard coming from the corner of St. Thomas and Dunn Streets in Belize City. When police arrived, 27year old Michael Eric Williams Jr. Was ...

Belize City resident arrested for possession of utensil for smoking drugs
A Belize City resident was arrested and charged for possession of utensils used for smoking controlled drugs. On Wednesday the 6th of April, police were on patrol on New Road in Belize City and stopped and searched 54-year-old Walter Flores of Belize City. When police were approaching Flores, he thr...

Breaking Belize NewsPJ

KREM TV’s 4th Awards Show
The following received awards at the 4th annual KREM Music Awards Show held Saturday at the Bliss Center for the Performing Arts, Belize City: Lifetime Achievement: J.C. Arzu and Tony Wright, co-hosts of KREM Radio’s “Belize Musicians Past and Present” which has been on air for the last 21 […]

Two “potential” cases of Zika uncovered in South; may be linked to U.S. couple
The Ministry of Health says that its Zika containment plan for Belize is moving into “a new phase” due to two potential cases being uncovered in the Stann Creek and Toledo Districts with a third person being identified as of interest. However, until samples […]

Governor General welcomes ambassadors to Belize
A government press release issued earlier today, announced the presentation of credentials to Governor General Sir Colville Young, by four ambassadors at the Belize House in Belmopan. Ambassador of the Islamic Republic of Pakistan, H.E. Aitzaz Ahmed; ambassador of the Indonesian Republic, H.E. Yusra […]

Generally dry conditions prevail over the region
The National Meteorological Service of Belize is predicting mostly sunny skies today and partly cloudy skies tonight with showers, if any, being isolated. Winds will be blowing to the East at 5-15 knots and the sea state will be choppy. High temperatures today are […]

Special Envoy lashes out at Amandala
The Special Envoy for Women and Children lashed out at the Amandala newspaper on Monday afternoon via its Facebook account over a controversial headline that has caused much backlash on social-media. The story, printed in its April 10, 2016 edition: “Girl, 13, said ‘yes’ to 4 […]

Player of the week: Luis “Baka” Torres
Luis “Baka” Torres, 24, was born in Belize City and raised in Independence Village. He started playing soccer from a young age and when he was 12-years-old he began playing with school teams. In his high school years Luis won 2 National championships and in college, […]

UDP to select new deputy leader May 29th
The United Democratic Party held a special meeting of its national party council on Saturday to determine the date of a convention to elect the first deputy party leader, who would replace the retiring Gaspar Vega. The convention will take place at the ITVET Grounds in Belize […]

U.S. TV series to air episodes filmed in Belize
Fans of two well-known American television series may recognize the background when those programs air this week. On Sunday, Discovery Channel aired an episode of Naked and Afraid, a 21-day survival challenge pitting two contestants against Mother Nature, filmed in Belize. Contestants Kacie Cleveland from Bellingham, […]

Dangriga man being investigated for rape of disabled stepdaughter
A disturbing report made by the mother of a disabled 15-year-old minor on April 1, has launched a rape investigation in Dangriga. The woman told officers that on March 31, sometime between 3:00 and 3:30 p.m., she got home from work and noticed that […]

One murdered and other wounded on Sunday morning
Sometime after 3:00 a.m. yesterday morning in Roaring Creek, Cayo District, police responded to reports of a fight in front of the burial ground and upon arrival, saw 40-year-old Jose Gonzalez suffering from a cut wound to his head. Gonzalez was transported to the […]

CARICOM caution on Panama Papers
The Caribbean Community (CARICOM) has issued a caution about the Panama Papers and subsequent labels being attached to financial service centres in its member states. CARICOM is deeply concerned about the resurgence of the “tax havens” designation saying that the quote “loose attribution of this […]

Young Belizean going to Harvard
Since graduating from St. John’s College last year with stellar educational achievements, Angel Navidad chose to take the Suite of Assessments (SAT) for universities based in the United States and after sending out applications, was elated to find out that he had been accepted to […]

Belize Electricity Limited (BEL) apologizes for countrywide blackouts
The country experienced three power interruptions last night between 8:18 and 9:49 p.m.Belize Electricity Limited (BEL) later issued a press release explaining that the outages were the result of system failure from its power supply in Xulha, Mexico. BEL attributed the failure to a faulty protection […]

Blogs

Tres Cocos, Ambergris Caye: Beautiful Residential Neighborhood…or Is It?
Tres Cocos is lovely neighborhood just north of the bridge. And I am in no way questioning that it is beautiful. It is. I am not sure where it technically starts…but here’s my estimation. You drive over the Barry Bowen Bridge — over the cut that divides “the south” (and town) from “the north”. You pass the movie theatre and the whole Reef Village compound (now Barrief Reef Village) and then…you are in Tres Cocos sub-division or neighborhood. In front of Reef Village… It’s an area that is changing quickly with the addition of THE ROAD. The road that used to be a bumpy, dirt and/or MUD adventure, is now is paved from the bridge to about Mile 4 and being readied up to Mile 10. I have received a few messages from readers who are…unhappy…with the changes and the addition of new businesses to this area. And claim that it is the “end of the residential neighborhood”. I’ve got an opinion on that but first? Some pictures. Here is a walk that I took yesterday in Tres Cocos. First along the beach. I cut towards it at The Cloisters.

A recent trip into Barton Creek’s dark Underworld scared and enlightened us at the same time!
The Mayans believed that the Ceiba tree depicted the structure of the world, the top of the tree which is filled with leaves depicted the Heavens, the trunk of the tree is the Earth with the roots that go down deep representing the Underworld, known to the Mayas as “Xibalba”. The Mayans believed that the roots went deep into cave systems and were extended into stalactites, To them, caves were entrances to Xibabalba, and they would enter these cave systems to present offerings to their Gods and Barton Creek is one such cave system located here in Belize. The ride to the site on the Pine Ridge is scenic, the foothills are lush and there are small farming communities along the way, a glimpse of a very quiet, simplistic life. We arrived at a small steam crossing and drove right through to get to the park entrance which seemed like any normal car park. Farther up the creek stood a huge crack in the side of the cliff, a large slice of black abyss peering out onto the forest. The water was a hue of jade but you could look through it and see old wood trunks on the bed, and small fish swimming around. At the mouth of Barton Creek cave, the aperture of its entrance becomes increasingly more apparent, a tall slice seemingly slashed right through the limestone. Get your safety tips and a quick brief as you enter the cave. The entrance can be tricky as there is a tiny passage buffered on both sides by two huge boulders but once you pass the entrance the cave really lays its atmosphere on you. You can feel the difference in the air, there’s more of an echo, and the light slowly but surely loses its fight against the darkness.

South Water Caye, an incredible island in Southern Belize
Because of the freshwater sources in the center of this small island, fisherman used to stop off at South Water Caye to replenish their supplies. Approximately 15 acres in size, South Water Caye lies directly above the Belize Barrier Reef and is home to some of the best snorkeling and diving in the country. When a beautiful tropical island comes to mind, South Water Caye is an almost picture-perfect rendition of that image. With gorgeous panoramas of the Caribbean, sugar sand white beaches and gorgeous snorkeling and diving opportunities nearby, South Water Caye is one of the most beautiful islands in Belize. Because the island is in the middle of a protected nature reserve, it is very easy to see an abundance of colorful marine life all along the shoreline. South Water Caye is located directly atop the Belize Barrier Reef a few miles offshore from Stann Creek District in southeastern Belize. It is in the center of the South Water Caye Marine Park, a protected reserve where fishing and industrial activity is prohibited. South South Water Caye has no airport so the only way to get there is by water taxi or private boat. Depending on the weather, it takes approximately 45 minutes to arrive at South Water Caye from Dangriga or other coastal locations in Stann Creek District.

International Sourcesizz

Criminal Minds Beyond Borders - Belize Edition
To air on Wednesday, April 13 on CBS. Set your reminders!!

This Low-Tech Trap For Killing Mosquito Eggs Is Brilliant
Mosquitoes love to breed inside discarded car tires. So why not use this against them? Such is the thinking of Canadian researchers who have developed a DIY mosquito trap that’s already proving its worth in field tests. The trap is called Ovillanta, and it was developed by researchers from Laurentian University with help from Mexico’s National Institute of Public Health (plus a little money from the Canadian government). The egg trap is constructed from two 20-inch (50 cm) sections of discarded rubber car tires. The bits of tire are fashioned into a mouth-like shape, and a fluid release is added to the bottom.Once it’s ready and hung on a wall or tree, a non-toxic solution is added. A chemical pheromone is added to attract the mosquitoes. A wooden strip or paper floats in the artificial pond, where the female lays her eggs. Twice a week, the strip is removed so that it can be analyzed, and the eggs that have been collected are destroyed using fire or ethanol. The solution is recycled back into the tire, but over time it collects even more mosquito pheromones, making it even more irresistible. From a mosquito’s perspective, it’s actually quite diabolical.

Causes still unknown for unusual earthquake in northern Yucatan
The National Seismological Service (SSN) has confirmed the earthquake of 2.9 magnitude on the Richter scale recorded on Thursday April 7 at 11:50 am, 19 kilometers from Motul, between Dzemul and Dzidzantún. Although the causes of this tremor, which was imperceptible to the population, are not known, the quake “is not surprising,” says Adriana Gonzalez Lopez, analyst for SSN, interviewed in Mexico City. “The geological conditions of the Peninsula promote this type of phenomenon,” she says. In fact, in the Yucatan Peninsula, an earthquake of low intensity occurs every 12 to 18 months, with its epicenter usually recorded in the southern part of Yucatan state and the coasts of Quintana Roo. “There could be many earthquakes in Yucatan, but we have no equipment to detect them,” said Gonzalez Lopez. “There are only three seismological stations in the Peninsula, one in Merida, which only capture the quakes near them. If we had more stations, we’d know more.”

Get Ready Culinary Trendsetters, Lionfish Are Coming To Whole Foods!
In a weird way, lionfish are kind of adorable. From their mane to their stripes to their little unicorn horn, you might be inclined to think that lionfish are good little pets. Oh, but actually, they’re a highly destructive invasive species who breed like crazy, have venomous spines, destroy the environment and resources of native fish, hurt like hell when stepped on, and, because of their high population, are turning into friggin’ cannibals. Yikes. However, Whole Foods is looking to turn this invasive fish into an edible fish. In the next six months, Whole Foods will start selling lionfish at the counter in their West Coast locations. Eventually, the chain hopes to expand the sale of lionfish to all of its 431 stores. The way Whole Foods chooses to source its seafood is actually based on sustainability ratings for fish buyers to help make eco-conscious choices that protect the oceans. The scores are given by Monterey Bay Aquarium’s Seafood Watch, which gave lionfish a “Best Choice” rating (there are tons of them and, unlike so many fish, population is growing out of control. Which is great, considering that the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration has been begging people to eat lionfish and help get rid of them.

Cuba running low on beer as thirsty US tourists descend
The ubiquitous fridges that dispense beer in Cuba’s bars, cafes and petrol stations are running out of the island’s favourite Cristal and Bucanero brands as a surge in American tourists and the proliferation of new private watering holes put the nation’s main brewery under strain. Brewer Bucanero needs a new plant to keep pace with demand from tourists and a burgeoning private restaurant sector that competes with state-run outlets for supplies, Mayle Gonzalez, a sales executive at the company, said on Saturday.. Bucanero, a joint venture between the Cuban government and Belgium’s Anheuser Busch InBev, also makes the Communist-led country’s most widely consumed brew, Cristal. Local media reported that Cuba’s breweries signed contracts this week for more than 33m cases of beer at a business in Havana, considerably more than their current production capability will allow. Bucanero is reportedly planning to import 3m cases of beer from Dominica to keep up with demand.

Caribbean Fisheries Forum meets to discuss emerging challenges
Fisheries experts from across the Caribbean region travelled to Guyana last week for the 14th meeting of the Caribbean Fisheries Forum -- the primary technical deliberative body of the Caribbean Regional Fisheries Mechanism (CRFM). The Forum met in Georgetown on Thursday and Friday to undertake its annual stocktaking and planning for the fisheries and aquaculture sector. The event brought together more than 50 participants, including directors of fisheries, chief fisheries officers, and other development partners, such as NGOs and international organizations like the UN Food and Agriculture Organization, which work with the CRFM in promoting the development, management and conservation of the Caribbean’s fisheries resources.

Videos

  • Comedy show at Sandbar San Pedro, 3min. On Friday, as part of the comedy show at Sandbar San Pedro, Joe Chung and I had a Worst Possible Playlist Contest -- AND MY PLAYLIST WAS THE WORST! Since I won, the punishment for Joe was that he had to walk around the island with a big-ass boombox, blasting my terrible playlist -- which we filmed for the following night's show. The video is below -- enjoy!

  • Easter In Belize at Tipsy Tuna Beach in Placencia, 7min. Belize In America recap of Easter in Belize at the Tipsy Tuna Seaside & Sports Bar, Placencia, Belize. In this video, you will see some of the main highlights from the Easter Weekend in Placencia - including Mr. Physique and Swimsuit contest, Coconut Husking contest, tips on planning for Easter 2017. A brief feature on the Maya Beach Hotel & Casa Placencia Garden Rooms & 1-2 Bedroom Apts-Ocean/Gardenviews.

  • Belize & Guatemala 2016, 11min.

  • Zip Lining in Belize, 2min.

  • Release: Waddles the Royal Tern, min. Release of Waddles, the rehabilitated Royal Tern at Belize Bird Rescue. Released at Hour Bar in Belize City. Here's the rehab and release footage of one of the longest, non-parrot rehabilitation we've ever had ~ Waddles the Royal Tern was with us for six months before he finally spread his wings!

  • Saint Peter’s Anglican School Special Ed Fun Run 2016, 4min. On Saturday morning students from the Saint Peter’s Anglican School Department at the Saint Peter’s Anglican School, their parents, teachers, and other members of the community participated in the annual Fun Run held in Orange Walk for children with disabilities. The run was held with the hope of eliminating the stigma against disabled children and also served in preparation for this year’s National Special Olympics.

  • COROZAL JUNIOR COLLEGE BUSINESS EXPO 2016, 6min. The Corozal Junior College held their 2016 Business Expo at the school’s compound. It’s an annual event in which students display their business ideas to the public and at the same time learn from the professionals as several established businesses also set up their booths offering visitors reasonable discounts and promotions.

  • INDEPENDENCE PLAZA TO BECOME ENVIRONMENTALLY FRIENDLY, 5min. The rehabilitation project of Independence Plaza, being carried out by BSI/ASR in partnership with the Orange Walk Town Council and the Police Department has been developing for some weeks now. The hope for the park is to create an environmentally safe area for children to enjoy while using safe and recyclable material to create an aesthetically pleasing site in a way that will not harm the environment.

  • Snorkeling with a sperm whale, 1.5min. After 3 great dives at Turneffe i had to jump and snorkle with a beautiful little giant! Sperm Whale!!!! Soooo wicked cooool!!!

  • Ann Learns to Snorkel, 5min. Visited a couple of Cays in Belize. Ann has her first snorkeling experience.

  • Women's Profiles in Belize, 33min. Belizean Women talk about the challenges they faced being some of the first women in their field of work.

  • The Beer Diaries World Tour: Belize - Marie Sharp's, 8.5min. The Beer Diaries is proud to present The Beer Diaries World Tour: Belize, a series dedicated to using beer as an introduction to history, culture and the geo-political state of countries around the world. In this episode, host Mike Mann and his team head to Stann Creek Valley to speak with Marie Sharp, owner of Marie Sharp’s Hot Sauce, about the second largest export of Belize and the importance to the people of the region. This companies origin story, a big contrast to the Belikin Beer monopoly, takes you through the peaks and valleys of Marie’s fierce determination to make this one of a few Belizean products that has made it all over the world via her grassroots efforts.

  • Study Abroad Belize 2016, 3min.

  • Summer Camp for Mayan Children of Belize, 4min. Camp Chahim is seeking funding to sponsor a one-week summer day camp for thirty Mayan children living in a remote region of southern Belize. The camp will be free to attend for the children.

  • Belize It or Not!! (SDSU), 5min. SDSU Study Abroad to Belize

  • Punta rhythm @ Hopkins, Belize, 1.5min. People playing Punta rhythm down inna great Belize!

  • Belize Jungle Zip Line Video, 5min.

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