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#517511 - 09/14/16 10:25 AM Today's Belize News: September 14, 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

Princess Acosta is the new Queen of Bacchanal 2016-2017
Ambergris Caye had its share of the Carnival flair on Saturday, September 10th during the second edition of the Queen of Bacchanal Pageant. Organized by Foreva Fancy Boutique, the pageant was part of the September Celebrations. In a show full of talent, color and music, six lovely contestants from different parts of the country competed for the crown. But only one could be Queen of Bacchanal 2016-2017, and she is Princess Acosta from Belize City. Dance presentations by Yaka’s Dance Group and San Pedro Jabbawokeez kept the audience enthralled until the swim wear competition began. The crowd cheered loudly for their favorite delegate as she modelled for the judges. Once the last model walked away, the audience enjoyed dance performances from the Mystic Mas Band.

Linden Kelly charged for Elton Polonio’s death
Police have formally charged 32-year-old Linden Kelly for the murder of Elton Polonio, who was killed in downtown San Pedro on Thursday, September 8th. Kelly was charged on Monday, September 12th at Belize City’s Magistrate Court. Prior to Kelly’s arraignment, investigations revealed that the motive for the murder was as a result of a love triangle. Although eyewitnesses have reported that the altercation between Polonio and Kelly began at Central Park, where Polonio then proceeded to a hardware store on Angel Coral Street in search of machete, the official police report states that Polonio was injured during an alleged confrontation inside the hardware store. Polonio, also 32 and originally from the Stann Creek District, sustained several cut wounds inflicted by Kelly, including the fatal one to the left side of his chest. According to many witnesses, they believe Polonio could have saved his life if he would have sought medical assistance in the first place. Eye witnesses claimed that he wanted to continue the fight, ignoring the fact that he was already badly injured.

Ambergris Today

Miss Belize Universe Pageant 2016
We witnessed 22-year-old Rebecca Rath of Dangriga, Belize crowned the new Miss Belize Universe after a ten-year hiatus of the pageant. We congratulate her and wish her the best as she now prepares to represent Belize at the Miss Universe Pageant to be held in Manila, Phillipines on January 30, 2017.

Belize to Make its Energy Sector More Climate Resilient
Belize will strengthen the climate resilience of its energy sector as a result of a US$8 million grant from the Global Environment Facility (GEF) approved today by the World Bank Board of Directors. “A major concern we often grapple with is extreme weather,” said Frank Mena, Belize’s Minister of State for Finance, Public Service, Energy & Public Utilities. “The impact of such events often leads to major set-backs to our development progress,” he added.

Mexican Travel Agencies Visit Belize on Fam Trip
The Embassy of Belize in Mexico partnered with the Belize Tourism Board (BTB), the Belize Tourism Industry Association (BTIA), and the Belize Hotel Association (BHA), to organize a Familiarization (FAM) Trip for Mexican travel agencies from August 29 to September 6, 2016. The eight participating agencies represent some of the largest and more established companies in Mexico. During their stay, the travel agents visited Belize City, Butterfly Falls, Caracol, Dangriga Town, Hatchet Caye, Hopkins, Lubaantun, Mountain Pine Ridge, Rio on Pools, San Ignacio Town, Silk Cayes, South Water Caye, Placencia, and Punta Gorda Town, where they were hosted by participating BTIA and BHA members.

Misc Belizean Sourcesmzz

Belize International Yoga Festival
Join Belizean Yogis and MC YOGI in beautiful Belize for the First Annual Belize International Yoga Festival December 30th, 2016- January 1st,2017. December 31st- Morning Workshop:Yoga, Myths, Mantras, and Magic Concert : to bring in the new year! Ongoing yoga classes of different styles for all levels beginners to advance. Even children's yoga. Proceeds go to R.O.C Om Shanti Belize - an NGO dedicated to spreading the healing benefits of yoga, meditation and other forms of wellness throughout Belize and beyond .

Social Media for the Travel Industry Training
Sept. 28, 2016. 9:30-3:30pm, Caye Caulker Plaza. Please be informed that all participants are required to bring along either a laptop or tablet.

COROZAL ROTARACT CLUB INVITES
NOTICE TO ALL PERSONS INTERESTED IN MAKING THIS HAPPEN: Kindly feel free to share and tag persons who you think might be interested in attending this meeting that will take place on Wednesday, September 14th , 2016 at RD's Diner on 4th Avenue at 7:00 P.M. Let us join and make a difference. See you there!

Ancient Bling!
If these artifacts could talk! The exhibit "Maya: Hidden Worlds Revealed" has been traveling around the United States--including Boston, Minnesota, San Diego and Denver. Now the collection of 150 artifacts is getting ready to move to the Perot Museum in Dallas, Texas!

The Road to Independence Exhibition
The Road to Independence Exhibition is officially open. It will remain open until the 22nd of September. Worth a visit if you are in the Culture Capital!

Tribute to Belizean Patriots
Each year Belize honours men and women who put country and others above self. Here is the list of people who will be recognized for their contributions on Thursday at Bliss Center for Performing Arts, at 7 p.m. This event is free. ORDER OF DISTINCTION 1. H.E. Ambassador Benjamin Ho of Taiwan: For distinguished service to Belize 2. Mrs. Jane Usher: For distinguished service to Belize MERITORIOUS SERVICE AWARD 1. Sister Josefina Alamilla: For contributions to religious life and community service 2. Mr. Lucio Alcoser: For contributions to music 3. Ms. Vilma Bailey (posthumously): For contributions to nursing and health 4. Mr. Danny Cornoquie (posthumously): For contributions to public security and safety...

Belizean YLAI Professional Fellows
Today Ambassador Moreno had the honor of meeting with the Belizean YLAI Professional Fellows when they visited the Embassy to prepare for their upcoming trip to the U.S. next month! Stay tuned for future posts highlighting each of Belize's YLAI Fellows! About YLAI - President Obama’s Young Leaders of the Americas Initiative (YLAI) empowers entrepreneurs and innovative civil society leaders to strengthen their capacity to launch and advance their entrepreneurial ideas and effectively contribute to social and economic development in their communities.

Belmopan Belize Screen on the Green
Continue your September celebrations this week in Belmopan at the Belize Screen on the Green this Thursday at GG Field! This week we will be screening the movie, "McFarland USA." As always, the movie starts at dark and is free and refreshments will be served while they last. Bring the family and enjoy a great movie!

Section 53: A case of Adult Privacy and The best liars in religion
On August 10th, 2016, the Supreme Court of Belize ruled that section 53 was unconstitutional and read down the offending section to say, "this does not apply to consenting sexual acts between adults in private." Wade, in his disappointment noted in a facebook commentary on August 18th that Cabinet and Caleb was Sodom and Gomorrah. This snapshot on the left reveals exactly what he said while his fundamentalist colleagues revealed solutions that included a referendum on section 53, a constitutional amendment on marriage, safeguarding the education from LGBT Agenda, among others to correct concerns about the acknowledgement of LGBT rights in Belize. Furthermore, Wade and Stirm promoted a campaign of deception with the Belize National Teachers, Utilities Union and the leader of the opposition. As a result, the Utilities Union issued a Press Release on September 8th, calling on the government to,.." mount an appeal, against the sections within the judgement which express issues of our freedom of expression, and the meaning of gender to include sexual orientation." If they had spent anytime reading the judgement, they would have known that the term to be challenged was sex not gender. Still they call for peace and no discrimination. The release further spoke to, " ensuring democracy prevails" and calls for members, "to take active measure to support the churches in our country.

Government Receives Response from Unions on Deferral of Salary Adjustment
The Office of the Prime Minister announces that it has received the formal response of the Joint Unions' Negotiating Team to Government's request for consideration of a deferral of the third tranche of the Salary Adjustment until April 2017. The Association of Public Service Senior Managers (APSSM) voted yes to deferral, and so did the Public Service Union (PSU), but the Belize National Teachers' Union (BNTU) voted no, leading to a two to one split in favour of deferral. In view of the impasse among the Unions, the Prime Minister has asked for an urgent meeting to see if their differing positions can be reconciled and some common ground found. Naturally, the public will be kept informed.

Notice to All Importers of Pharmaceutical and Herbal Products
The Ministry of Health is currently involved in the development of a Drug Registry and it has become necessary for the Ministry to implement a moratorium effective immediately on all new pharmaceuticals and herbal products into the Belize market until further notice. Please be advised that in order to import pharmaceuticals or herbal preparations, you must be a licensed importer with the Ministry of Health’s Licensing and Accreditation Unit. The Ministry of Health is also in the process of reviewing the application for importation of medications by “Peddlers”. Please be informed that the list of items you are currently trading needs to be upgraded to include the following: Name of Product, Name of Active Ingredients, Quantities to be Imported, and Expiry Date of Product.

SCHOLARSHIP OPPORTUNITY
The Caribbean Community (CARICOM) herein advertises the Masters Degree Scholarship in “Structural and Geotechnical Engineering” developed by experts from Chile and Japan, which is open to participants of Latin American and CARICOM Countries. There is no limit to the number of applicants by country but only five (5) participants will be selected for the course. 1. Member States are invited to submit applications for the programme using the criteria set out below. (i) Applicants should have applied to the University and gained their letter of acceptance at the time of submission of applications to the Embassy. Information on the University and how to apply can be obtained at the link www.masterieg.puc.cl.

Announcement from the Cabinet
Cabinet is prepared to support a Senate Select Committee rather than a bi-cameral Joint Select Committee inquiry into the Auditor-General's Immigration Special Report. Cabinet has taken this position in view of the reconsideration by the Belize Chamber of Commerce and by the Belize Council of Churches, both of whom were originally in favour of going the bi-cameral route. Cabinet is also persuaded by the fact that a seemingly substantial portion of the public apparently prefers the Senate to conduct the hearings, and by the further fact that the ultimate objective of holding such hearings will be served by either of the two routes on the table. There is thus no need for Cabinet to insist on its own preference for the bi-cameral method. Cabinet also agrees that one of the Social Partner Senators should chair the Senate Select Committee. Cabinet does insist, however, that the composition of the Committee reflect the balance of power in the Chamber, as is mandated by Standing Orders.

Letter: Barrow's bubble bursts - The Belizean economy in freefall recession
This is an official Belize Progressive Party (BPP) position paper on the economy. Our last recession in Belize occurred in 2009 as a consequence of the bursting of the housing bubble that occurred in the United States commencing in the last quarter of 2007. The US housing bubble was created when very poor and questionable decisions were taken in the US housing market to spur housing growth. Buyers, who were from the outset unable to repay their new housing loans, were lured in by unscrupulous lenders. This was a scheme based on greed and total disregard for the welfare of those borrowers. In the case of Belize, the Barrow administration cannot blame any external cause for the two consecutive quarters of economic contraction (January – July 2016), now clearly an official recession of our economy. Even after benefiting from the bounty of taxes on the windfall from BNE when world oil prices were high, and from PetroCaribe largesse, their short-sighted and politically motivated economic policies have backfired with a clear burst.

Channel 7

Government Supports Senate Inquiry, But Insists Membership Must Represent Political Majority
It's official, the Barrow Administration has officially thrown its support behind a Senate Inquiry. A press release issued after Cabinet today says, quote, "Cabinet is prepared to support a Senate Select Committee rather than a bi-cameral Joint Select Committee inquiry into the Auditor-General's Immigration Special Report." It continues, quote, "Cabinet has taken this position in view of the reconsideration by the Belize Chamber of Commerce and by the Belize Council of Churches, both of whom were originally in favour of going the bi-cameral route. Cabinet is also persuaded by the fact that a...substantial portion of the public apparently prefers the Senate to conduct the hearings...There is thus no need for Cabinet to insist on…the bi-cameral method."

PUP Rejects Cabinet Proposal For Senate Inquiry
And while the government is using the model endorsed by the Churches - the opposition doesn't want to hear it. They say that a Senate Select Committee with three members of the government will not be independent because the Government will have too much influence over the investigation, which could cause for the Senate probe to be misdirected. This evening, they released a statement which says, quote, "... The PUP is seriously concerned that the Cabinet would take the opportunity to dictate to the Senate what the composition of its Senate Select Committee should be. That is a matter for the Senate to decide. Not the Cabinet." End quote. The Opposition goes even further to scold the Barrow Government by quoting from the Senate Standing Order.

Barrow Once Endorsed Independent Senate Inquiry
As you heard in our interview, John Briceño asserted the Prime Minister, and Godwin Hulse are behaving in a hypocritical manner to want that much representation on the Senate Committee. Back when the Prime Minister was in Opposition, he was asserting that the Government should not investigate itself. Indeed, that back in the bad-old days of SSB scandals, and Prime Minister Barrow was leader of the opposition, he was pressuring the Musa Government, demanding that any investigation of corruption needed to be independent. Our archives show that back on September 1, 2004, the Then Opposition Leader Dean Barrow and his party released a statement questioning the Musa's handling of the Social Security Scandal. They were recommending a Commission of Inquiry, which is totally different from a senate probe. They wanted to put the investigation completely outside of the influence of the Government being scrutinized.

BNTU Gives GOB Ultimatum on 3% Increase, Other Matters
And while the issue of the composition of the Senate Select Committee will be churning for days, there's much bigger news on the horizon. The Belize National Teachers Union has sent the government a stern letter demanding - among other things - that government pay up with their 3% increase as promised. That's the position coming out of a national meeting held on Saturday, September 10th. According to reports, the Teachers have demanded a favorable response by this Friday September 16th, and if they don't get it, they will hold a protest next week, and stage a national sickout next week, forcing the closure of schools. That's a very hard line - and last week Friday the Prime Minister said he doesn't know how the teachers are contemplating industrial action - and today his Party Whip backed him up:

PSU President, Deferred Raise May Avert Retrenchment
And while the teachers have issued an ultimatum, the Public Service Union and the Association of Public Service Senior Managers are not with them. They have told the government that they are willing to take a deferral of their raise - in view of the broader economic picture. So that means the three unions, BNTU, PSU and APSSM form the Joint Unions' Negotiating Team which negotiated the increases with Government - and now two of three three are saying they are willing to defer the increase. It's a very significant difference of opinion, and today in Orange Walk the PSU president told CTV-3 why his union membership has taken that position:... Eldred Neal, President - PSU: "We were tasked to go out and pool our constituent and return to a meeting with the Prime Minister to indicate whether or not public officers were about agreeing to the deferment."

Standard VI Student Dies After Accident On B-Ball Court
For most primary school students, last week was their first week back to school. They got to see their classmates, meet new friends and teachers and by this second week they will more or less be settled in for the new school year. But that experience was cut short for 12-year-old St. Joseph School student Daemon Garcia. He collapsed on the school court on Friday while practicing with the basketball team. Daemon's coach then rushed him to the hospital but nothing more could be done for him, Daemon died on Sunday morning. So what happened to the pre-teen? How could a young, active and spirited young boy just faint and die? Did he hit his head on the fall? According to the principal, it was not the fall that killed Daemon, in an interview this evening, she told us what happened on Friday and revealed the surprising post mortem results. She also reflected on the brilliant and athletic student Daemon was.

Young McDonlad Had Some Luck
Today a pregnant 19-year-old avoided jail time when the judge was lenient with her. Amy McDonald took the rap for her boyfriend Aaron Brown when they were both accused of burglary. They both pleaded guilty to entering the home of Sherman Tasher, on Iguana Street Extension with an intent to steal. They both pleaded guilty but Brown had an explanation. He told the court that he had no idea that she was burglarizing the house since she had a key for the door. McDonald told the Chief Magistrate, Anne Marie Smith that it was all her fault and that is why she is taking the rap for the burglary. Now that carries a mandatory prison sentence, but the law allows special circumstances where the court can refrain from imposing the mandatory jail term if there are extenuating circumstances as in the case of McDonald who is 3 months pregnant.

Finnegan Suggests Electorate To Blame For Ministers' Letters
Earlier in the news, we showed you parts of our interview with UDP Party Whip Michael Finnegan, as he was exiting today's Cabinet Meeting. He was defending his other Cabinet colleagues whose names are called in the Auditor General's reports. So, while he says that there is too much hysteria stirred up about the findings of that report, the news out of today's Cabinet meeting is that his colleagues will be investigated by way of a Senate probe. Finnegan is perfectly in the clear since he name is not called not even once in all 3 reports into the Immigration practices of 2011 to 2013. We also showed you his explanation about how he managed to stay away from being named. Today, we also got an opportunity to question him about the demands made on Area Representatives by the electorate. He told us that this culture of voters requiring ministerial involvement in so many things may account for why the names of 13 of his current and former colleagues ended up in the Auditor General's reports into the issuance of visas, passports, and nationality certificates. Here's that back and forth:

Castro Banks At Immigration Conversation
We also got an opportunity to talk to Belize Rural North Representative Edmond Castro about the same issue. As viewers are aware, his name is called in the reports, and as viewers would remember, his integrity was called into question when immigration agent turned whistleblower, Alvorine Burgess, accused him of selling Belize Visa recommendations to Asian nationals. So, today, we tried to discuss the points in the audits where his name is called, but playing it very safe, he stayed far away from that one, no matter how hard we pushed. Here's how that went: Hon. Edmond Castro, Minister of Transport: "If you are an area representative, you are there to represent your people in that area. Hence the reason why they called you an area representative and you are there to help your people. Simple thing as tuition assistance. You are there to assist them. If they have death in the family, they expect you to assist them. So every little thing your people that elect you to serve them come to you for assistance."

Bus Fare Hikes Could Be Coming To Your Route
And while Castro was not willing to go into a conversation about the culture revealed in those audits, he was a lot more forthcoming when we asked him about his involvement in trying to regularize bus fares for the public transportation all around the country. As viewers will remember, the Western bus owners hiked the price up for 2 days, and when he as the Minister of Transportation found out about it, he intervened to make sure that the price went back to what it was. Today, he told us that he continues to meet with the bus owners, and that the public should expect that there will be an increase in fares in some parts of the country. He said not to worry though, the Government will balance your interest along side that of the owners to make sure that they make a fair return, while you aren't price gouged:

GSU Arrests An Entire Home
The GSU yesterday searched a home which they say is a weed peddlers' paradise. The home is on 7th Street in the King's Park area, and the GSU says it is the residence of Arthur HIGGS Sr. The cops found close to 11 ounces of marijuana and arrested everyone in the house, from 67 year old HIGGS Sr, to his 34 year old son Arthur HIGGS Jr. A total of four other persons were arrested. At the end of the search six men were arrested and charged for two counts of Possession of Controlled Drugs with the Intent to Supply.

Making Hospitals Safer
As a smart home buyer or builder, you would look for or build a sturdy home, one that can withstand storms and keep your family safe. Well, that is exactly what health authorities will be enforcing with hospitals and health facilities across the country. This is being done through what is called the "Smart Health Facility Project". The main focus is to make these hospitals stronger and safer for patients. A workshop was held in Belmopan at the Western Regional Hospital to discuss this project. The workshop runs for 4 days.

Southern Cops Got Gun & Suspects
Tonight, 22 year-old Independence resident George Banner continues to serve a 5-year sentence. That after he was busted with an illegal firearm used in a robbery. It happened on Monday, and the victim, a 20 year-old villager, reported to police that earlier that morning, he was at the BTL compound using the internet. That's when he was approached by 2 men, one of whom was armed with what appeared to be a .38 revolver. At gunpoint, they ordered him to hand over his valuables, and that's when, fearing for his life, he gave them his cell phone. Acting on intelligence, police searched George Banner's home. His common-law wife, 21 year-old Maria Cifuentes, was present at the time of the search, and that's when the police found a .38 revolver, the same gun that is believed to have been used in the robbery.

Police United Got Pounded By Pachuca
Right now Belize's Premier League Champions, Police United FC is taking a pounding form Mexico's Pachuca. In the 83rd. minute, the score is an embarrassing 9 to nil in favour of the Mexican visitors. The shellacking started in the 22nd minute and it continued from there in quick succession; Pachuca had 5 goals at the half! Pachuca's Ervin Lozano already has a hat trick scoring three of his team's 9 goals. It's a much worse outcome for Police United which lost three to Nil when they played Pachuca in Mexico in August. Police United needed to end with a score of four to nil to remain in contention and this thrashing will make their continued presence in the Champions League Tournament mostly ceremonial.

Marine Pilots: They Rule The Night
Last week we told you about the new three million dollar vessels that the Port of Belize's Marine Pilots would be using to go out on their late night runs. Now, this kind of vessel is even more expensive than what the Coast Guard uses - and if you're wondering why they need something so specialized - then you'd have to be up before the birds to see the quite remarkable job that these men do. And what's even more remarkable is the completely understated way they carry out this very specialized task. In 2009 we went with them on one of those late night missions; Jules Vasquez reports:... At the time there were only a handful of marine pilots; but since then four more have been trained, and on Friday they were given their licenses.

Ras Indio In An Unplugged Version
For those of you who follow Ras Indio, you will definitely know his defiant protest tune, "Dem a Fraud". Well Ras is bringing it back with a new acoustic flavor. He came to our studio to talk about this new version of his song and why it is important to keep the message alive. You can just go to Youtube and type in Ras Indio "Dem a Fraud" Acoustic to listen to the entire track. Those Belizeans living abroad or those planning to travel this week, can see Ras Indio perform this new version of his song in Dallas this Saturday and then in Inglewood California for a street Festival.

Taking On The Tenth
Last night due to time constraints we didn't have space for our annual look back at the Tenth of September. Tonight, for the record, we look at the speeches, the crowing of the Queen of the Bay and the jump up:... After the ceremony, Pocono Bwai regaled the audience with his song of the year, "Border to Border" - which had feet tapping across the aisles. And after the ceremony, ti was to the city streets for the jump up. This year, the parade made up in spirit what it lacked in numbers or size, and by the time it passed us on Albert Street - the rain couldn't stop the street jam.

Como Agua Para Aguacate
And while it was raining in the city, water was pouring in Aguacate in the Toledo District. As we told you last night night, the water system was inaugurated on Friday and Minister of Economic Development Erwin Contreras was there for the opening:..

Channel 5

G.O.B. Now Supports Senate Select Committee; Names Composition & Chairmanship
For a second time in five days, the government has had to withdraw its position on two major issues. Last Thursday, the Prime Minister announced it would appeal a portion [...]

Michael Finnegan Believes Inquiry Will Come to “Nada”
The PM did not offer comments on this major concession following Cabinet today, nor did one of the most outspoken senior parliamentarians Michael Finnegan. While Finnegan pulls no punches as [...]

Opposition Leader John Briceño Disagrees with Composition Outlined by Cabinet
As we told the composition of the Senate Select Committee is already coming under fire. The Opposition says it is not for the executive to dictate the composition of the [...]

The P.U.P. is Yet to Make a decision on Which Senator Will Represent Them
Briceño told us that he is willing to sit down with the Prime Minister at any time to discuss the committee. He also told News Five that the committee should [...]

Briceño warns Godwin Hulse He Cannot be Minister of Police and Immigration
The People’s United Party is also calling for Senator Godwin Hulse, who is Minister of both Home Affairs – which covers the Police Department – and Immigration and Nationality – [...]

Should Teachers Be Given Their Salary Adjustments?
And our question for tonight is: Do you believe teachers should be given their salary adjustments? Send your comments and responses using your SMART phones to 8686 or post your [...]

Belize Police United Versus Pachuca of Mexico
At this time at the F.F.B. Stadium in Belmopan, the Mexican Football team, Pachuca is playing against Police United from Belize in a return match in the CONCACAF Champions League. [...]

Majority of Unions Vote to Defer Salary Adjustments; P.U.P. differs
Another national issue that is bubbling is the final instalment for salary adjustments to teachers and public officers. This afternoon, Government also announced that a majority of two to one [...]

Minister Finnegan Says Unions Will Get Deferred Adjustments – No Need to Strike
In the wake of Hurricane Earl and due to the present economic climate, government has been lobbying for a deferral of the third tranche of wage increases.  That final adjustment, [...]

Attorney Dickie Bradley Issues Warning Against Cabinet Interference with Senate
Back to the issue of the senate select investigation…this afternoon, News Five sat down with attorney and former Leader of Government Business in the Senate, Richard “Dickie” Bradley, for his [...]

Does Government Really Want a Senate inquiry?
Bradley too wonders if Government’s behaviour points to something more sinister – for instance, trying to manoeuvre the Opposition out of the proceedings. He drew comparison with how the P.U.P. [...]

Aunt of Deandre Nembhard Mourns Third Family Member Lost to Violence
Seventeen year old Deandre Nembhard was shot and kill on Saturday morning as he socialized on Croton Lane in the Saint Martin De Porres area. The minor was en route [...]

Anita Nembhard Unsure of Justice for Latest Victim
According to Nembhard, the death of her nephew is even more painful on Deandre’s father, who is currently living in Los Angeles, California and is unable to travel to Belize [...]

The Strange Saga of Dorian Pakeman and Dean Dawson, Revisited
Charges are expected to be levied on the embattled director of the Press Office, Dorian Pakeman. Back in March, Pakeman hit and killed Gardenia resident, Dean Dawson while driving his [...]

Alleged Tampering Issues “Frightening” for Seasoned Attorney, Dickie Bradley
The news of the positive cocaine test, alleged tampering, and fiddling with the Dorian Pakeman file has sent shockwaves through the legal community. Today defence attorney Dickie Bradley says it [...]

Shooting Victim Calls On Police to Assist Him
Remember Jamaal Young? The self-employed DVD salesman was unintentionally shot on March fifth on Mahogany Street, allegedly by officers in pursuit of a fleeing vehicle. “Bounty,” as he is popularly [...]

4 Men Freed of Firearm Charges
Today, four men were freed from two of three serious offenses related to a stolen firearm. The group was busted near the East Canal area of Belize City back in [...]

Overhaul of Public Transportation Ongoing
The complete overhaul of the public transportation sector, particularly where it concerns bus fares and the quality of the commuter experience, is a steady process.  Earlier this afternoon, Minister of [...]

Health Ministry Launches Hospital Safety Index & Green Assessment Course
The Ministry of Health and the Pan American Health Organization officially launched the Hospital Safety Index and Green Assessment Course today in Belmopan.  The idea is to introduce locally what [...]

Making the J’ouvert Mud for Carnival
J’ouvert has grown into one of the most popular events that precede the carnival road march to be held this Saturday in the City. Thousands will converge at the San [...]


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#517512 - 09/14/16 10:25 AM Re: Today's Belize News: September 14, 2016 [Re: Marty]
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CTV3

Taxi Operator Accuses customs Officer Of Abuse Of Power
Tonight a taxi operator, and resident of Orange Walk Town is extremely upset with Officials from the Customs Department. This morning Mateo Queme visited our news room, after exhausting every other means to resolve what he describes as abuse of power at the hands of Custom officials. According to Queme, the problem arose after his taxi was wrongfully impounded by members of the department. Mateo Queme – Taxi Operator: “Hace unos días, siete días me quitaron un taxi, recogí un cliente y ella tenía tres bolsitas de tomate y dos de chile dulce entonces Custom me paro y no me preguntaron ni de quien ni de nada solo me dijeron súbete a troca de Custom y me quitaron mi caro entonces cuando llegamos a la oficina la señora le dice a Custom que ella se hace cargo de las cosas que ella solo me llamo para taxi, entonces cuando Custom les dice a ella que eso no tiene nada que ver que me van a garrar el taxi y tiene siete días hasta el día de hoy peleando mi caso con ellos ya fui hasta la policía y al jefe de Custom y nadie me quiere hacer caso.”

Cabinet Now Support Senate Select Committee
There is finally unanimous support for a Senate Select Committee to investigate the Auditor General’s special audit findings. Cabinet announced today via press release that they have switched from pushing for a Bi-Cameral Joint Select Committee, to supporting the idea of a Senate Inquiry. This is a tremendous shift, but when one considers the factors that played into the Cabinet’s new position, one would recognize how much pressure the Barrow Administration had to face. But Cabinet’s change doesn’t mean everything is honky dory. To the contrary, there is disagreement over what should be the composition of the Senate Select Committee. At the August 31 Senate meeting, the Opposition Senators suggested that the Committee must be made up of a representative from the Opposition and Government, and 1 for each Social Partner. Cabinet does not agree, however, and has proposed that the Committee consists of 3 Government representatives, 3 from the Social Partners and 1 from the Opposition. Now, if we consider that the Church and Government seem to be holding hands tightly on issues, we could take it to mean that the Government still has a majority.

OWTC To Recognize Members Of The Community
In keeping with the September celebration spirit, the Orange Walk Town Council will be hosting its fourth award ceremony under the management and office of Mayor Kevin Bernard in which prominent and hard-working individuals from the community will be recognized. This year the awards were divided into two categories including the Patriotic Servants Award and the Mayor’s Award. The ceremony is scheduled to take place tomorrow at the town hall commencing at 2:00 in the afternoon where all recipients will be formally acknowledged in the presence of the organizers as well as invited guests. Kevin Bernard – Mayor, Orange Walk Town: “Every year ever since I become Mayor of this town we have decided to award Citizens with the patriotic servants award and we also identified individuals that they believe have contributed to the community or assisted the council in one way or the other and I give them the Mayors’ Award, there a few recipients this year...”

Canada Issues Travel Advisory To CARICOM Including Belize
Since the first case of Zika was detected in Belize earlier in the year it has been spreading throughout the country putting locals and potential visitors on high alert. So far there have been 10 confirmed cases of Zika in Caye Caulker alone and several others in the Belize and Cayo districts, which has prompted the CDC, the US and several other countries to issue travel advisories to the jewel. Recently added to the list is the Canadian Government who updated its travel advisory yesterday to include nine CARICOM nations including Belize. The Canadian government is urging all its citizens traveling to the Bahamas, Belize, Dominica, Guyana, Haiti, Jamaica, Suriname, St. Lucia, and Trinidad and Tobago, to exercise a high degree of caution due to the presence of Zika in these nations.

LOVE FM

Boat Owner Charged for Damages to Barrier Reef
Fifty one year old Juan Carlos Ucros Alvarez who was born in Columbia but later nationalized in Guatemala was charged for environment damages by the Department of Environment and for negligence and carelessness by the Belize Port of Authority based on the Merchant and Shipping Act. Alvarez is the owner of the yacht named “Rumba” […]

Melissa Ferguson Speaks on Murder of Llewellyn Lucas
As Melissa Ferguson remains out on bail and her spouse, William Mason is on remand at the Belize Central Prison, Ferguson maintains innocence in the allegations of kidnapping and murder being faced by them. In an interview with Love News, Ferguson says that she and Llewellyn Lucas were engaged in plans for children camps and […]

Churches Welcome Public Morality Commission
The Public Morality Commission … the announcement of its formation has caused quite a stir in the court of public opinion. It is a body that is being put together to look at various areas including the Gender Policy with an aim at revising what is agreed upon. The commission will be made up of […]

Energy Sector Works at Climate Resilience via World Bank Grant
The World Bank has approved an eight million US dollar grant from the Global Environmental Facility to assist Belize to strengthen the climate resilience of its energy sector. Among the results to be achieved by the Energy Resilience for Climate Adaptation Project in Belize are: improved capacity for long-term energy planning, taking into account the […]

Tampered Blood Samples Investigated in Pakeman’s Case
A scenes of crime technician is being investigated for tampering with the blood sample of Dean Dawson. Six months ago, Dawson was knocked down and killed by Press Office Director, Dorian Pakemen who has been placed on unpaid leave after Assistant Commissioner of Police Edward Broaster revealed that Pakeman’s blood specimen had tested positive for […]

Guatemalans Concerned Over Migration Code on International Immunity
While Belize is waiting for the Guatemalan Congress to ratify going to a referendum to determine how to move forward in their claim over Belize, the Guatemalan La Hora Online news is reporting that Congress is looking at their migration code instead. The migration code covers international immunity for certain members of the Guatemalan Government […]

GSU Confiscates Drug From Suspected Peddlers
Members of the Gang Suppression Unit rained down on a house in the King’s Park area yesterday evening where they confiscated over three hundred grams of cannabis. As a result, six men were arrested and charged with two counts of possession of a controlled drug with the intent to supply to another. Intelligence had led […]

Amandala

Death came early 10th September morning
The early morning of Saturday, September 10, brought heartache to the Ovado and Nembhard families of Croton Lane in Lake Independence, Belize City. Deandre Nembhard, 17, was shot in the chest and body 6 times while socializing with his two friends in his family’s yard at about 2:30 Saturday morning by an unknown gunman who fired about 9 shots at him. Although reports are that other people were in the yard, no one else was injured in the shooting. Police who were on patrol in the area responded quickly and rushed Nembhard to the Karl Heusner Memorial Hospital, where despite the attempts of doctors to treat him, he died shortly after. He has since been taken to the morgue, where his body will undergo a mandatory post-mortem exam.

Rest in peace, “Dae Dae”
Daemion Garcia, affectionately known as “Dae Dae,” will not be marching up the aisle for primary school graduation this year. According to family and friends, the 12-year-old standard six student at St. Joseph Primary School was playing basketball on the school’s court when sometime this week, he suddenly fainted and hit his head. Garcia was admitted to the Karl Heusner Memorial Hospital (KHMH), where he succumbed to his injuries while receiving treatment sometime between Saturday night and Sunday morning. His mother told Amandala today, Monday, that she believes that it wasn’t the fall that caused his death, but that his “fall was the consequence of other things.”

Teachers issue ultimatum to PM Barrow
Teachers met at an emergency meeting last Thursday to consider what actions should be taken to press the Barrow administration on key demands they have put on the table, including their insistence that the Government should not defer their 3% salary adjustment until next April and their push for a Senate inquiry into the recently unveiled Immigration audits. Although no official statement has been released by the Belize National Teachers’ Union (BNTU), Amandala is reliably informed that a letter is being dispatched to Prime Minister Dean Barrow, and if the demands that the teachers have put on the table are not met by Friday, the teachers are likely to stage a demonstration early next week.

Barrow urges OAS not to give in to Guatemala’s bullying
Guatemala has stepped up its campaign against Belize in regards to the shooting death of a Guatemalan minor in the Chiquibul in April, and apart from persisting that the case should be heard by the Inter-American Commission on Human Rights, officials of that country are taking the Organization of American States (OAS) to task over a recently released independent expert report into the killing. Whereas it had been announced that the Secretary-General of the OAS, Luis Almagro, would have issued a statement on the report, we note that so far, none has been forthcoming and instead, his representative on Belize-Guatemala affairs, Magdelena Talamas, was dispatched to Belize and Guatemala to formally present the findings.

Constitutional challenge in the making to decriminalize marijuana?
Today, a man who was charged with drug trafficking after police busted him with 119.2 grams of cannabis was allowed to plead down to the lesser charge of possession. Lusby Martinez, 32, was busted by the police’s Mobile Interdiction Team (MIT) on Friday, September 9, in the George Street area. The 119.2 grams of cannabis was found inside his right back pocket. Martinez appeared before Chief Magistrate Smith along with his attorney, Dickie Bradley, this morning and was fined $200. Smith ordered him to pay the fine by September 22; if he does not pay, he will have to spend two months in prison.

Di Roo hosts Di Mugger & Gene Guild Day at Yabra this Sunday, September 18
Arriving in Belize on Friday, September 9, was legendary Belizean goalkeeper Nelson “Roo” Robinson, who is the chief architect behind planned festivities at Yabra field this Sunday, September 18, in honor of departed football greats, Louis Garbutt a.k.a. Bembe, the Mugger, of the legendary Dunlop and Independence teams, and Gene Guild a.k.a. “the Japanese Bomber,” of Berger 404 fame. The first “Mugger Day” in Belize was held at the St. Martin’s or Third World field back on September 15, 2013. The Roo visited our sports desk this morning, accompanied by Steve White, Sr. and son Steve, Jr., to inform us of some details of the planned event.

Pachuca is in town, and “taking no prisoners”
Arriving in Belize via the P.S.W.G. International Airport this evening, was a full contingent of the Mexican national champions, Pachuca FC, here for their Scotiabank/CONCACAF Champions League return leg against Belize’s Police United FC at the FFB Stadium tomorrow evening at 6:00 p.m. And they are all business as they strode into the Belize Biltmore Plaza Hotel around 5:30 this evening. After checking in at the hotel desk, all the players and other team personnel promptly made their way to their rooms, leaving only their press officer and a couple players to share a few words with the waiting media representatives. One of those players spoke fluent English, and we managed to get a few comments from him. Orlando Gonzalez, who says he is the starting center back for Pahcuca, stands around six feet four inches, maybe more, and was modest and guarded in his remarks, but couldn’t escape admitting that, as fans would expect, they are here to do all the damage they can, in terms of scoring goals, to try and win their group, and make it to the coveted Hexagonal in Champions League.

Police registers second PLB win
Few fans give Belize’s Police United FC much of a chance going against reigning Mexican champions Pachuca FC tomorrow night at the FFB Stadium in Belmopan in the return leg of their Scotiabank/CONCACAF Champions League series, where Pachuca took game 1 by a 3-0 margin. But if the Police United team needed a confidence builder, they got it on Saturday at the Carl Ramos Stadium in Dangriga, where they secured a 2-1 victory against a game and young Wagiya FC in Week 4 of the Premier League of Belize (PLB) Opening Season 2016-2017. John King gave Police the early lead at the 5th minute, and Harrison “Cafu” Roches made it 2-nil at the 59th minute, before Wagiya avoided the shutout with a late goal from Alton Carr (86’) for the 2-1 final score. Also on Saturday, it was visiting FC Belize coming away with the 1-nil win against home standing Placencia Assassins, courtesy of a first half goal by Hector Martinez. Like the Belmopan Bandits, who rested this past weekend, FC Belize has only scored a total of 3 goals in as many matches, but neither team as suffered a loss yet, and are tied in points for the standings lead along with Wagiya FC, who suffered their first loss on Saturday, but have played one more game than the Bandits and FC Belize.

Weekend Warriors Series#2 and Overall results
Here are the results from the 5th and last race of the Weekend Warrior (WW) 2nd Series of 2016, held yesterday in Bermudian Landing Village. The race went from Bermudian Landing field to St. Paul’s Junction, and returned to head to Isabella Bank Junction for 1 lap, for a total of 11.5 miles per lap. The “A” Class did 4 laps, while the “B” & “C” Classes did 3 laps. Top finishers by Class were: “A” Class – 1st place Kent Gabourel (Kulture Megabytes, 2:02:32); 2nd Collet Maheia (Kulture Megabytes, st); 3rd Preston Martinez (Bel-Cal); 4th Palas Joseph (Lampaz); 5th Andrew Vasquez (BFSC-El Pescador). Top 5 Overall in Class “A” after 5 races: 1st place Kent Gabourel (Kulture Megabytes, 139 points); 2nd Warren Coye (Santino’s, 119 pts); 3rd Kirk Sutherland (Digicell-4G, 115 pts); 4th Collet Maheia (Kulture Megabytes, 107 pts); 5th Andrew Vasquez (BFSC-El Pescador, 102 pts).

Editorial: BNTU: incipient intransigence
To our mind, the most significant development over the weekend was the fact that the leaders of Belize’s teachers gave up their Tenth of September holiday on Saturday to come to Belize City for a national Council of Management meeting. This followed “emergency” branch meetings of teachers on Thursday afternoon, September 8, when they left their classrooms to discuss the Government of Belize’s request for the teachers’ financial benefits to be deferred until next year. The “emergency” meetings on Thursday afternoon resulted that evening in a castigation of the Belize National Teachers Union (BNTU) on national radio and television by the Chief Education Officer, Dr. Carol Babb. BNTU President, Luke Palacio, replied in kind, as we would say. We don’t think we would be exaggerating if we said that the economy of Belize is in a serious tailspin and that Belize’s public finances are in a mess. Belize’s teachers may be the best informed and most well-read section of our population.

From the Publisher
This is the time of the year when we celebrate what Belize is and who we are as Belizeans. In 2016, there is a significant amount of confusion and division in our society, and a certain quantum of such confusion and division is the result of induced ignorance, so to speak. Personally, I believe it is impossible for denominational religion to educate our citizens properly, because so much of denominational religion involves superstition and the encouragement of fanaticism. Because the education system of Belize is dominated by denominational religion, there are too many occasions when it does not matter how lucid and logical your argument may be: the power structure in place, in league with denominational religion, absolutely has the ability to ignore you and your argument, in effect to pretend that you do not even exist. This is Belize, beloved, and this is too much a part of what we celebrate every September.

Fyah, Fuego, Sham, Ka’ak and Fire
Editor Amandala Sir, No matter what you call it, the flames and smoke will come. Though it is rainy season now, the burning will come with dry season. Last week I flew in to Belize City and saw hurricane debris in the fire-sensitive broadleaf forest. Later on the local bus across the Hummingbird Highway, I saw the situation on the ground. I knew from lessons learned from past storms, those dead and down trees uprooted by the storm’s fury may very well bring more fire into the forest when dry season comes. Dry season will come and so will the burning. Controlling these severe human-caused fires will be challenging. The impact upon the tourist industry, livelihoods, and watersheds will, as it has been in the past, be rough. Smoke will linger and settle among the population, causing reduced visibility. Worse, the smoke will affect young and old. The impacts of severe dry season fires will affect almost everyone, whether you live back a bush or in the city. The fires will come. If you are Belizean, you have seen it all before. The sky is red at night and bare hills in the aftermath.

Commissioner of Police Allen Whylie speaks on many matters
Commissioner of Police, Allen Whylie, returned from vacation and gave reporters an extended interview this morning on some of the key issues that are at the fore in the country as a result of events that occurred while he was out of office. Whylie said he kept updated on events in the news. KREM’s Marisol Amaya asked Whylie whether he had any relationship with the man William “Danny” Mason, who is accused of kidnapping and beheading Pastor Llewellyn Lucas, and who allegedly made financial contributions to several ministers of government and public officials. Whylie replied, “I can categorically deny that I never met the man. I had no relationship with Mr. Mason.” Whylie explained that he had heard of “Ted Oulet,” but he did not know anything about the man other than what he was told about him.

Breaking Belize NewsPJ

PM Barrow Owes His Three Peat to Mayor Bradley
When the Mayor of Belize, Darryl Bradley first expressed his plan to launch a municipal bond for cementing 100 Belize City streets….his own UDP party, and especially the “brain thrust” of its leadership, were putting up all kinds of obstacles and raising all kinds […]

Strategical and tactical development of Belize City
Belize City, Belize became what it is today because of its location. Found on the Caribbean Sea, it rests nicely at the harbor where Haulover Creek empties. Originally known as Belize Town, Belize City Belize was founded by British lumber harvesters known as […]

BNTU votes ‘No’ to salary deferral; other unions vote ‘yes’
Prime Minister Dean Barrow announced through a press release today that he has received a formal response from the Joint Unions’ negotiating team to Government’s request for the consideration of a deferral of the third tranche of the Salary adjustment until April 2017. The […]

Ministry of Health announces new policies for pharmaceutical importers
The Ministry of Health today issued a press release informing all importers of Pharmaceutical and Herbal products that a moratorium is being implemented immediately on all new pharmaceuticals and herbal products into the Belizean market. The Ministry says this is necessary as it is […]

CARICOM deepens partnerships to address de-risking
CARICOM leaders, including Antigua and Barbuda Prime Minister Gaston Browne, met with heads of the Caribbean Development Bank (CDB) to discuss concerns over “de-risking”. Browne also met with heads of the Jamaica National Building Society (JNBS), which also has a vested interest in addressing […]

Canada issues travel advisory over fear of Zika
Yesterday, the Canadian Government updated its travel advisory for nine CARICOM nations including Belize, among a list of countries around the world. The Canadian government is urging all its citizens traveling to the Bahamas, Belize, Dominica, Guyana, Haiti, Jamaica, Suriname, St. Lucia, and Trinidad […]

GOB agrees to Senate inquiry into Immigration report
The government of Belize has changed its position on a bi-cameral House-Senate select committee on the investigation into the claims made in the Auditor General’s Immigration audit. According to GOB, “Cabinet is prepared to support a Senate Select Committee rather than a bi-cameral Joint […]

New documentary to chronicle John McAfee’s time in Belize
A new documentary to air on Showtime network on September 24 will chronicle multi-millionaire anti-virus developer John McAfee’s colorful years in Belize leading up to the murder of his neighbor Gregory Faull and his subsequent “escape” from the country. Based on the accounts told […]

Fair weather expected to continue
The 24-hour forecast is for sunny skies with cloudy spells today and partly cloudy tonight. Showers or thunderstorms will be generally isolated across the country, except in the south where a few more showers or thunderstorms are likely to occur tonight. The wind will […]

Belize to make its energy sector more climate resilient
The Government of Belize (GOB) has received a grant of US$8 million from the Global Environment Facility (GEF) to strengthen the climate resilience of its energy sector, according to a press release issued by GOB. The grant was approved yesterday by the World Bank […]

Blogs

My 8 Favorite Sea Creatures in Belize
Many know Belize for the coastline, the amazing diving and snorkeling. And for very good reason. Fun fact everyone knows: Belize, you may have heard, has the second longest barrier reef in the world. Second only to the Great Barrier Reef of Australia. Fun fact that many people know: Coral comprise some of the densest and richest habitats in the world – home to up to 25% of the sea life on the planet (they are less than 1/4 of 1% of the entire marine environment. The reef runs all along the coast of Belize – sometimes a few miles away from the mainland and sometimes touching the coast (up at Rocky Point, Ambergris Caye)… So it is the absolute perfect place to see a wide variety of fish and all types of marine creatures. Here are five of my favorites. Ranked of course. Starting with my most favorite…the most beautiful…one that makes you want to cry into your snorkel mask for joy…

San Ignacio Belize: 15 Epic Outdoor Adventures
Now that you all know the best restaurants in San Ignacio Belize, the next order of business since we’re all fueled up and ready to go is; what is there to do around here? You could stick around and relax until dinner to try out the next best restaurant, but who likes sitting around all day anyway… For you adventure junkies, check out the following 17 epic outdoor activities around San Ignacio Belize: Make Chocolate The Mayan Way, Go Spelunking, Horseback Ride to Xunantunich, Splashing at Rio On Pools and Rio Frio Caves, Cave Crawl To Find Ancient Maya, River Tube Downstream, Hike The Maya Mountains in Pine Ridge, Zip-line At Calico Jack’s, Have A Romantic Sunset Dinner, Cliff Diving Off Big Rock Falls, Dirt Bike Around Town, Enjoy Organic Farm-To-Table Dining, ATV Jungle Tour, and Glamping and Camping.

Rebecca Rath, Belize’s Newly Crowned Warrior
I never met Rebecca Rath before the Miss Belize Universe 2016 pageant, yet I became instantly drawn to her spirit. I’m an observer. I’ve been known to overanalyse things quite a bit. Sometimes, this skill becomes a highlighter of beautiful things that would otherwise be left unnoticed. Since we now represent iTravel Belize and not just Ambergris Today, I promised myself to stay impartial at least on the outside. Still, I was totally curious to see the Miss San Pedro representative. So many people traveled from Ambergris Caye to cheer and support her. A quiet voice inside me wanted the prize for our little island. Dianira was sitting directly across from the dressing room doorway and I observed her as she got her makeup done. A beautiful woman with admirable confidence. The nerves were obvious in all the contestants as I looked around backstage. I glanced at all of them with the same fear in my heart, overthinking how devastating it must feel to loose something you’ve worked so hard towards. Nine of these girls would feel that empty space inside even though they are all beautiful and deserving of love and praise, simply for having the courage to be there. My thoughts made me nervous for all of them.

International Sourcesizz

Belize to Make its Energy Sector More Climate Resilient
Belize will strengthen the climate resilience of its energy sector as a result of a US$8 million grant from the Global Environment Facility (GEF) approved today by the World Bank Board of Directors. Belize is often in the direct path of tropical storms and hurricanes, which are expected to intensify due to climate change. This has caused many human casualties and widespread damages, resulting in costly disruptions of vital public services. The impact of Hurricane Dean in 2007 resulted in US$80-100 million in damages, equivalent to 6-8 percent of GDP, and a near countrywide power blackout. Likewise, Hurricane Earl left another wave of disruptions last month. “Building climate resilience is a key priority for Belize. This project aims to support the government’s continued efforts to make energy and power systems better prepared and more resilient to storms, hurricanes and natural hazards,” said Sophie Sirtaine, World Bank Country Director for the Caribbean.

Following Hurricane Earl, ECLAC sets the groundwork for disaster assessment in Belize
A team lead by the Economic Commission for Latin America and the Caribbean (ECLAC) sub-regional headquarters for the Caribbean carried out a mission to hurricane-struck Belize, to provide support to the government in its effort to undertake comprehensive assessment of the impact of Hurricane Earl, which hit in early August 2016, and to assist in the formulation of recommendations for recovery and reconstruction. The team included experts from the Inter-American Development Bank (IDB), the United Nations Food and Agriculture Organisation (FAO), and the Pan-American Health Organization (PAHO). Hurricane Earl hit several towns, including San Pedro, Caye Caulker, Belize City, Ladyville, Belize River Valley, Orange Walk and Belmopan, causing infrastructure and building damage, while many roads and streets were blocked due to inland and coastal flooding.

Our Caribbean: Fighting or 'talking' crime?
WHEN GOVERNMENT ministers responsible for crime and security start rejecting any blame for the increasing criminality afflicting their respective jurisdictions, the public should be on alert for worst-case scenarios while hoping for swift, enlightened responses from cabinet ministers and/or heads of government. As gun-related crimes keep afflicting CARICOM states, with current primary victims including Belize, Barbados, The Bahamas, Guyana, Jamaica, and Trinidad and Tobago, this country’s Attorney General and Minister of Home Affairs Adriel Brathwaite, and Trinidad and Tobago’s Minister of National Security Edmund Dillon have gone publicly on the defensive, with some surprising pathetic “don’t-blame-me” claims. Well, since no commissioner of police in our region would be expected to publicly accept blame for the awful spreading crime scenarios currently afflicting parishes, villages, communities or towns, it would simply mean that, in the case of both Barbados and Trinidad and Tobago, finger-pointing would, inevitably, identify the political representatives sitting in the respective cabinets of Prime Ministers Freundel Stuart and Keith Rowley.

The Oldest Book Written in the Americas Is a Mayan Guide to Astronomy
As the Mayan civilization was in decline, a diligent scribe was working on the oldest book created in the Americas: the Grolier Codex. The book, which contains personified images of the sun, death, and other deities—all working in service of the “star” Venus—is a guide to astronomy. For a long time, experts believed it was fake. But in a surprise twist, researchers are now saying that this 900-year-old book is the real thing after all. But in the latest issue of Maya Archaeology, Stephen Houston of Brown University revisits the codex and determines that it’s real. The calendar discrepancies, he says, can be explained by regional or temporal variations in mythology of Venus, the movements of which this 104-year-long calendar predicts. In addition, no modern pigments are displayed on the codex, and the sharp cuts appear to be breaks in gypsum plaster—not markers of modern carpentry.

Videos

  • Belize 8-9-2016, 3min. Guatemala to Belize.

  • Podziemne miasta Belize Podziemie Majow Lektor PLFilm Dokumentalny, 44min.

  • Ixcanul - Trailer, 2.5min. Directed by Jayro Bustamante, Ixcanul tells the tale of coming of age, of traditions, and of the stark reality of the people who live near the volcano. This movie was shot entirely in Kaqchikel, with a few lines in Spanish, and has won 18 awards globally, including best films at the Guadalajara and Cartagena International Film Festivals.
    María, una joven maya de 17 años, vive sobre las faldas de un volcán activo en Guatemala. Un matrimonio arreglado la espera. Aunque María sueña con ver la «gran ciudad», su condición no le permite cambiar su destino. Más tarde, una complicación en el embarazo la obliga a salir al mundo moderno que le salva la vida, pero a un precio demasiado alto.

  • Pirates In Belize Corozal House of Culture, 3.5min.

  • Sea turtle begs for food from conch fisherman, 1/2min. Conch fisherman in San Pedro, Belize clean their catch at the same spot on the reef every day. One of the local sea turtles has figured this out and he convinces them to share their catch. The fishermen have even named him Scarface due to his missing eye and scarred cheek. Scarface has a voracious appetite and never refuses a meal.

  • Jacob G Hein Funeral Spanish Lookout Belize, 78min.

  • English Guy in Mexico - Stones Sea Breeze Guest-House, Corozal, Belize, 8min. I am debating on whether to swim with the crocodiles...mmmmm.

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