#518084 - 10/07/16 12:06 PM
Today's Belize News: October 7, 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
DFC 2016 Expo highlights impact on Belize’s Economy
The Development Finance Corporation (DFC), held its Productive Sector Expo on Saturday, October 1st at the ITVET Courtyard in Belize City. The event celebrated DFC’s 53rd year of serving the people of Belize, and featured more than 30 booths from private companies who are clients/supporters of DFC. Some of the businesses at the expo included energy-saving companies which produce solar panels, juice companies, and people in the arts and craft industry. The expo was considered the first of its kind and it featured a cross spectrum of DFC clients from different parts of the country. Representing Ambergris Caye in the small Micro Sector was the Ambergris Sausage Factory, which was flanked by other businesses including those from the larger productive sector businesses such as Toucan Industries. Entrance was free, and visitors had a chance to win some fabulous gate prizes, including $500 cash, plus a stay in a luxurious resort. The fair also included phone promotions from Digicell and SMART, entertainment was provided for children, and food and drinks were on sale. At the fair, DFC took the opportunity to feature their services to potential new clients.
BWG seeks to raise funds for Polyclinic ultrasound machine
In October, Blue Water Grill (BWG), together with The Phoenix and Wine de Vine, will be holding their monthly donation drive for a grand project: an ultrasound machine for the Dr. Otto Rodriguez San Pedro Polyclinic II. Many community members cannot afford to visit a private clinic, and according to BWG, this could result in many negative outcomes, particularly for women seeking prenatal care.
Since Dr. Otto Rodriguez San Pedro Polyclinic II does not have an ultrasound machine, and it costs $32,000 to obtain one, these three businesses will be pledging the initial $16,000. BWG is hoping to receive a matching amount in donations in order to purchase an ultrasound machine for the clinic. If the goal is not met in October, BWG will continue the effort in November.
As to their August donation drive, the San Pedro Kids Club, organized by Britney O’D6aniel, was the recipient of $1,612. BWG customers gave $397, which they matched, and guests of The Phoenix donated $409, which they also matched. The total was handed over to the club, which is a new after-school program geared for children in primary school.
Rotary Club presents Magic Show on La Isla Bonita
The Rotary Club of Ambergris Caye (RCAC) is excited to announce that Intermagia International Magic will be coming to La Isla Bonita on Monday, October 10th. For the first time, eight members from Spain, Chile, Guatemala, Mexico and Costa Rica will be providing a day filled with mystical magical entertainment and will be performing two shows at the Paradise Theater at 2PM (children) and 7PM (adults).
The show will open with San Pedro’s own local tumbling group, The Saints. The RCAC is encouraging the public to join them for this great cause. Tickets are $10 per child, and adult tickets are $50 per person. For $100, you could enjoy reserved seating through “Chairs for Charity.” Reserved ticket holders will be seated in the front row, and will be offered food and beverage service.
PM Barrow is confident that Belize will recover from “recession”
The current financial hardships Belize is experiencing has caused the country’s economy to plunge. From damages inflicted by Hurricane Earl, to members of the Belize National Teacher’s Union (BNTU) demanding their 3% salary increase, and even the recent settlement made by the Government of Belize (GOB) with the Belize Telemedia Limited (BTL) arbitration, the country’s economy is facing many challenges. During his Independence Day address, Prime Minister Right Honorable Dean Barrow announced that the country is experiencing a recession. “And the economic backdrop to it all is, at this time, a complicating factor since we are experiencing a recession caused by the vagaries of the commodities cycle: agricultural sector disease, the drying up of our petroleum resources, and the crash in global prices. It is, of course, a recession made worse by Hurricane Earl. But it is also a recession from which, I must say at once, we will absolutely recover,” said PM Barrow.
Invitation to Marriage Couples Retreat
The San Pedro Roman Catholic church invites both married and engaged couples to attend a married couples retreat. If interested you can registration at the San Pedro Parish or call 226-2479 or email at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Date: Saturday, October 22, 2016 from 6:30pm-10:00pm.
And Sunday, October 23,2016 from 8:30-5:00pm.
Place: Sun Breeze Hotel conference room.
Fee:$100.00 per couple (snacks and lunch included).
DFC EXPO Highlights Impact on Belize’s Economy
Following DFC’s 53rd year of serving the people of Belize, The Development Finance Corporation (DFC) hosted its first Productive Sector EXPO at the ITVET Courtyard in Belize City which was held on Saturday October 1st, 2016.
Entrance for the Public was free with attractions including a $500 cash prize and Resort stays as gate prizes, Double Up and Phone specials by Digicell and SMART, Entertainment for children, a Jingle Competition, food, drinks and more.
DFC’s EXPO featured a cross spectrum of DFC clients; from small Micro Sector Enterprise businesses such as The Sausage Factory (San Pedro) and Gordon’s Installation and Express Cleaning (Belize City) to larger Productive sector business such as Toucan Industries (Caribbean Sunrise juices, Belmopan) and Black Orchid Resort (Burrell Boom) to name a few.
Key developmental partners such as BELTRAIDE, the Central Building Authority, the Belize Chamber of Commerce and Industry (BCCI) and the Caribbean Community Climate Change Centre (5Cs) were also present.
Belize Assesses Progress of Hurricane Earl Recovery & Rebuilding Efforts
Minister of State for National Emergency Management Hon. Edmond Castro has met with National Emergency Management Organization (NEMO) co-ordinators in Rural Belize District to assess the progress of the recovery and rebuilding efforts for victims of Hurricane Earl, which made landfall in Belize exactly two months ago on August 4, 2016.
The rebuilding efforts have included construction of homes and assistance with material for needed repairs such as lumber and zinc. In the Belize District, material has been distributed from the NEMO Office and Warehouse on the Phillip Goldson Highway near the Burrell Boom Junction, with loading, transportation and offloading assistance by the Belize Defence Force.
Misc Belizean Sources
NEMO Minister of State and National Coordinator
Hand Over Houses to Hurricane Earl Victims
Minister of State for National Emergency Management Hon. Edmond Castro and NEMO National Coordinator Colonel Shelton DeFour were in Rural Belize District yesterday, October 5, 2016 officially handing over houses to victims of Hurricane Earl whose homes had been damaged beyond repair.
The number of houses completed so far is 60 out a total of over 180 which are expected to be constructed for victims in the four districts most affected by the Hurricane, namely Belize District, Cayo District, Stann Creek District and Orange Walk District. Also, 80 roofs have been repaired by contractors working for NEMO; and a total of over 1,400 victims have been assisted with material to repair their homes. NEMO National Coordinator Colonel Shelton DeFour says the rebuilding efforts should be completed by late November or early December.
BELTRAIDE Launches Fund for Entrepreneurs
BELTRAIDE along with the Regional Center for the Promotion of the Micro and Small Enterprise (CENPROMYPE) and the Embassy of the Republic of China (Taiwan), today will announce the launch of the Belize Emprende Fund. The objective of the fund is to provide resources to dynamic entrepreneurs for the support and establishment of sound business ventures.
Belizeans (whether individually or in teams) who are 18 years or older and have a strong business idea, or who have an existing business that has been operating for less than 3 years are being encouraged to apply for the Emprende grant. Thirty- six Belizeans will be awarded the opportunity to receive grant funding of a maximum of $5,555 US each.
Cooking with Villamil family and the Cano family in Xaibe
Wonderful afternoon spent with our cultural culinary artists; the Villamil family and the Cano family in Xaibe Village,as plans for the Hanal Pixan event on October 29th.are coming together. Delicious Maya cuisine will be on sale. We invite you to taste pipian, toxcel, pib de tamal, tamal colado, cochinita pibil, tamal de chaya, maja blanco, chocosacan and more!
BTB's Annual Tourism Industry Conference will be held Saturday October 22nd, 2016 from 9:30 AM to 4:00 PM at the
BTB's Annual Tourism Industry Conference will be held Saturday October 22nd, 2016 from 9:30 AM to 4:00 PM at the Ramada Belize City Princess. The Belize Tourism Board’s annual Tourism Industry Conference aims to share knowledge with our tourism industry partners on how to effectively operate in the industry based on past, present and future opportunities, threats and accomplishments.
Have you heard of Unique Belize? The new Destination Belize has!
The latest edition includes an article about the initiative which helps market the arts and crafts made by Belizeans! Click here! https://goo.gl/phVVGt (See page 38)
Paradise Theater playing this weekend
Star Trek Beyond,
Ice Age: Collision Course,
Ghostbusters Answer the Call,
Also, Announcing the Intermagia International Magic Show coming to San Pedro for the first time for two shows on October 10th: 2pm & 7pm at Paradise Theater. Join us for an evening of tumbling & magic like you've never seen! Families and children are welcome at 2pm for $10 per person. Adults, please join us at 7pm for $50 a ticket. We also have a LIMITED amount of $100 reserved seating in the front row, which includes food/drink seat service. Each show will open with an opening tumbling act from The Saints. All proceeds will benefit Rotary Club's Wednesday softball night for San Pedro Kids Club. Buy your tickets at Crazy Canucks Beach Bar, Wayo's Beach Bar or Keller Williams San Pedro Belize Team on Front Street before they sell out! Seating is limited to 300 attendees.
Pan American Day on Monday
So folks, this weekend will be a long one with Monday October 10th being a holiday in lieu of Wednesday, October 12th, PAN AMERICAN DAY. Enjoy and be safe!
Power interruption 7:00am to 1:00pm, Wednesday, October 12, Orange Walk: Tower Hill, Guinea Grass, Santa Martha & Carmelita
BEL to install lightning arresters, replace utility poles & replace manual splices on power distribution system in area.
Belize vs Guatemala Boxing
It's time for the annual Belize vs. Guatemala boxing at the Cayo Welcome Center. It's free, and will be this Saturday, October 8th, at 7:00pm. Go Belize!
"Coming this Saturday at the Welcome Center is our Annual Boxing Event. All Are Invited to come out."
Did you know the Institute of Creative Arts - NICH offers a Technical Audio Course?
The four-month certificate program equips graduates for employment with live sound companies, churches, DJ systems, theatres, radio & television, and live bands.
Tonight, 11 people will graduate from the program ready for this career track: Congratulations to them all!
You can learn more about the program from Mr. Whitfield Welch at the Bliss Center for Performing Arts: 227-2110.
Teachers out in full force at the BNTU's rally in Orange Walk Town!
10 photos, 2 videos
SBDC Workshop: MARKETING FOR SMALL HOTELS
October 13th, 2016,
9am to 3pm. This workshop aims to provide attendee with the knowledge on:
Marketing definition- its importance, the myths of Marketing, Knowing your product, , Identifying and Understand your customer, Strategies and Techniques including Branding, Promotion, monitoring and evaluation - Action Plan.
This workshop is intended for hotel owners, managers, staff.
Pedro Town Council, Conference Room, Barrier Reef Drive, San Pedro.
INCLUDES - Lunch and Snacks.
To sign up, kindly contact our office 501-223-3195 at or email us at email@example.com.
Two FARMERS MARKETS this weekend: SAN PEDRO and PLACENCIA
In addition to our two fabulous FarmHouse Deli FARMERS MARKET THIS WEEKEND, we will also be having two fabulous announcements .. special discounts and a sip of champagne to celebrate it all with.
SAN PEDRO Saturday, October 8th .. being held at the MAHOGANY BAY RESORT from 11 am to 2 pm. with our usually exciting array of our Delicioius Deli Specials.. special discounts and pricing starting at 11 am ..
PLACENCIA Sunday, October 9th .. Yes, SUNDAY this week .. we will be at the basketball court from 11 am to 2 pm with our usual array of Delicious Deli Specials.. special discounts and pricing start from 11 am ..
We have special announcements in both San Pedro and Placencia this weekend so we will be toasting with champagne at 11 am sharp .. and to enjoy all our goodies and special discounts. We hope to see all our Deli friends in San Pedro and Placencia
Letter: Government of Belize announcement regarding the UNCAC
The Belize Progressive Party (BPP) recognises the government of Belize’s announcement of its intent to sign the United Nations Convention Against Corruption (UNCAC), on 9th December 2016, as being a long overdue determination.
Of more significance, we wish to inform Belizeans, not to relax your demands for the all elected officials to adhere to good governance practices and principles, as government’s announcement is but the initial step in a process that requires: ratification by the senate, acceptance, approval and/or accession via the requisite government bodies. Each of these steps are required to ensure that Belize is officially party to the treaty and therefore in full adherence.
Therefore, given the extreme cunning demonstrated by the PM, in particular, amid the just pressure that is being brought to bear on his administration, by the BNTU and its partners, Belizeans must not fall victim to what fundamentally amounts to yet another means through which the Barrow administration is seeking to bide its time.
Cayo Urban Bird Watch 2016
The Belize Audubon Society had the 2016 Urban Bird Watch in Benque and Cayo this weekend.
"A huge Thank you to Benque Viejo and San Ignacio towns for welcoming us this past weekend for Urban Bird Watch 2016. What an amazing time it was! Benque was a lot of fun we got 63 species for Benque Viejo with the furthest inland record of the Mississipi Kite. In San Ignacio we saw 70 species with highlights such as the Golden- winged Warbler and Gray- cheeked Thrush. Photos courtesy of: Roni Martinez"
Initial lecture of the Perspectives of our Past historical talks delayed
Kindly be advised that the initial lecture of the Perspectives of our Past historical talks scheduled for October 11th has been rescheduled to Tuesday October 25, 2016. Please join us for a scheduled talk on Tuesday October 18th, at CJC beginning at 10 am as we discuss the historic Public Market building which is celebrating its 130 year of existence.
Supporting Belize's response to trafficking in persons
All this week the International Organization for Migration, supported by a USD $500,000 grant from the United States, has been leading a multi-agency "training of trainers" course to support Belize's response to trafficking in persons.
Ambassador Moreno spoke at the opening ceremony on Monday. Thanks, IOM for facilitating this great event, and thanks to all our Belizean partners for coming out to participate!
San Pedro Sun 25 Years, House of Culture
We invite you to take a walk down memory lane with us as we celebrate the growth and coverage of San Pedro news over the last 25 years.
Morning Ladies to celebrate the new wonderful space we have I am planning a little party today. I will have Free Paint Rippers (in lieu of panty rippers). If anybody would like to paint please come between 11 and 4 as after 5 it will be of a fun athmosphere. Dancing and drinking wine. Bring your own bottle $15 corkage fee I will provide wine glasses and party snacks. We will be open until 9 :)
Pan American Day Celebration in San Pedro:
Central Park, Oct. 8
National Garifuna Council 1st Black, White, and YellowGala
As we continue to preserve, strengthen & develop our unique Garifuna Culture and promote economic development of our Garifuna people, the National Garifuna Council of Belize is hereby requesting your support for the first Black, White & Yellow Gala to raise much needed funds.
Come out to enjoy the culinary flavors from Chef Sean Kuylen, listen to Garifuna artists such as Supa G, Lloyd and Adrian D Doc Martinez, enjoy a variety of music from DJ Cool and dance the night away with Wageirale Drummers band as we kick off the November celebrations with a CULTURAL TWIST.
Inbox for Ticket locations or contact Sheena Zuniga @ 602-9802, Cynthia Cayetano @ 677-0799, Marsha Mejia @ 605-2270 or Gwen Nunez Gonzalez @ 621-4097.
Teachers Strike Continues Into Fifth Day
Today, was day 4 of the teachers strike, and demonstrations were held all around the country, as the 10 branches of the Belize National Teachers Union flexed their numbers. It was the union's way of putting numbers in the street, and giving others in the public a chance to show their support by marching along.
We'll show you how the demonstrations looked in Belize City, Belmopan, Benque, and Orange Walk, but first to the most important news of the day. The strike will continue tomorrow, and there is a possibility that if the general membership so chooses, it could spill into next week.
This afternoon, the President of the Belize District Branch told us that she and the other Branch leadership will seek out their teachers on whether or not they will strike next week:
BNTU Brings Out 675 In City
We had that opportunity to speak with the President of Belize District Branch today at their demonstration and rally. Our news team was out there from start to its finish, and Daniel Ortiz has the story:
About 675 teachers from the Belize District Branch and their supporters from the political sphere and regular life paraded through the principal streets of the city, briefly commanding the attention of onlookers as they passed by in their second major demonstration in 2 weeks.
They marched for about an hour from the Constitution Park to the BTL Park, for a quick round of presentations from their chosen speakers.
At its start, it resembled a lively praise and worship celebration.
Belmopan Teachers Brought Out 300
And in the capital city of Belmopan the teachers and parents assembled at the Belmopan Comprehensive School this morning at 8:30. They moved off from there and walked along the ring road. As you can see in the footage we caught up with them as they passed the Catholic Church. The group was 296 strong. After the protest, they stopped off at the May Gordon Park where several teachers gave speeches. Then they all met at the George Price Center at 2:00 to plan their next step. Again, this decision will be taken to the National Council tomorrow for a national decision.
Benque Wasn't Buff, But Spirited
While the Benque teachers didn't have a huge turn out, they certainly brought a lot of energy. The teachers danced and waved their flags to the Punta version of their union song, "solidarity Foreover". There were just over 100 very enthused educators in the march.
Orange Walk Had Hundreds
And in Orange Walk the teachers were also spirited. They showed up in the hundreds for their procession through the town - where they were joined by the leader of the opposition John Briceno. They were also addressed by PUP Senator Valerie Woods, BPP Leader Patrick Rogers, and Hector Silva.
Bishops Tell Teachers To Go Back To Classroom
And while the teachers made their presence felt countrywide today - the Catholic Bishops, Wright and Glancey sent out a letter this evening saying it's time to go back to school. The letter opens by saying, "we want to reiterate our support for all those pushing the Government of Belize to implement policies and laws to monitor and enforce good governance." But, after that, it takes a turn. It says: "Now that the Prime Minister has expressed a willingness and desire to go back to the negotiating table, we support the appeal for students and teachers to get back to the classroom. The education of our young people is our primary concern. Other means besides strikes can be used to pressure the government for reforms to insure good governance. We call on the BNTU and other unions, other social partners, the opposition and the Government of Belize to work together to see that these reforms are set into law in the coming weeks and months. The commitment of GOB to sign the United Nations Convention Against Corruption on December 9, 2016 is one good sign of movement in this area."
Sudden Murder Saddens Succotz
The serenity in Succotz was shattered by a late evening slaying. 45 year old Luis Camal better known as "Johnny" was shot and killed around 8:00 last night. Camal, his wife and their 15 year old daughter were held up at gun point on the road linking Succotz and Benque. Instead of just taking their belongings, something went terribly wrong and the gunman took Camal's life. Courtney Weatherburne has more.
45 year old Luis Camal would have been among these vendors at the Succutz Ferry selling his wood carvings.
Camal has been carving for about 25 years and he inspired his brother and sister To make art pieces of their own. It has become a family tradition. But it will be hard to keep that artistic spirit alive without him.
Camal went to Luck's Computer shop yesterday evening to print the designs for his new carvings.
A Dangerous Stretch...
And the Camal's were certainly not the first to be held up at gunpoint on that road. Police admit it is a danger zone because of the poor lighting and the overgrowth along the hilly stretch of road. They constantly patrol the area but Superintendent Daniel Arzu says there is only so much they can do.
Supt. Daniel Arzu, OC - Benque Viejo Police:
"From our record or statistics will show you that Benque is a low crime rate area. How we come by that? We do proactive policing here and our relationship with our community is very firm. We engage with our community and we establish that bond. So we are a little bit surprise, but at the same token, we managed all our area of responsibility through effective patrolling, be it vehicular patrols or foot patrols and that particular area in deed is of concern to us and we've been patrolling that area effectively. But again, the criminals certainly will not wait for the police to engage or indulge in the criminal activities, they engage in the absence of the police. So it might seem 'look this area is not policed,' but like I said criminals prey over the opportunity and that's what they got and that is what really happens."
Fratricide In Orange Walk
41 year old Orange Walkeno Ruben Cain was killed last night, after he was stabbed to death by his younger brother. It happened yesterday at 3:45 at Cain's residence on Flamboyant Street in the Louisiana Area of Orange Walk. There was an argument between Cain and his brother which ended with the stabbing. By the time police reached the scene, Cain was dead.
Cain's brother has been arrested and is expected to be charged tomorrow. The family refused to speak to the media.
No Air Ambulance Yet For Severely Burned Kids
Tonight, burn victims 4 year old Ian Sambula-Carr and 8-year-old Empress Hamilton are in critical condition awaiting an urgent air ambulance flight to Shriner's Children's Hospital. As we've reported the two children received second and third degree burns to 90% of their bodies when their family home on Aloe Vera Street burned down on Tuesday night. Their cousin, 11-year-old Aaron Gabourel perished in the fire. Aaron was a special needs child who attended Stella Maris school and today the Belizean Assembly for Persons with Diverse Abilities sent out a release supporting his mother, Carolyn Hamilton and expressing, quote, "anger, at the injustice and lack of compassion to those marginalized peoples who are most in need." End quote. The group says, quote, "This is a real human disaster and we are responsible to address this and others."
The fire department continues to investigate the cause of the fire but so far has not found anything pointing specifically to arson. Still, we are told police have three persons detained for questioning.
Business Senator Speaks On UNCAC
Today Business Senator Mark Lizarraga marched with the Teachers Union against the government, but yesterday his Chamber of Commerce sent out a press release saluting the Government for committing to sign the United Nations Convention Against Corruption on December ninth. The Chamber has no problem with 2-month roadmap, since it will allow the Government time to properly prepare for the commitments which come with it.
That's one of the 8 good governance demands that the teachers went on strike for, and from listening to today's speeches, it appears that the teachers aren't satisfied that the Prime Minister will actually sign it. They say that he once promised to appoint the 13th Senator, but then he did not bring that law into effect. Today we asked the Business Senator to comment on the split in sentiments:
Hon. Mark Lizarraga - Business Senator:
"There was a committee from the chamber set up to work with the government on looking on the road map of the things that we need to accomplish. For example, there are many pieces of legislation that will need to be enacted. So I can understand why we cannot fully commit to that as now but we can commit to the process and I'm not the expert on this so please excuse me, the chamber has been running with this.
Chamber Probing The Probe TOR
We also asked him for his perspective on last week Friday's Senate Meeting, which now ensures that there will be a Senate Committee that will investigate the Special Audit Reports on the Immigration Department.
He voted against Church Senator Ashley Rocke's Government friendly motion which allows 2 UDP senators on this Committee. Critics say that the Government should not have this much influence on the tribunal since, it is this government administration which will be investigated for corruption.
Today, Lizarraga told us that the business community is currently in consultations about the aspects of the Ashley Rocke motion which they do not agree with:
Hon. Mark Lizarraga - Business Senator:
"The chamber has decided to poll its members. As a matter of fact as we speak the chamber is in the process of getting survey feedback from its membership as to what our positions will be on that. Yes the committee was formed and yes the committee was formed with 6 members and we have supported consistently a committee with 5 members. that is not to say that the prime minister cannot say 'I'm only appointing 1 instead of 2', that is still a possibility but at this time the business community has not arrived at a final decision as to what his actions are going forward. As far as the calling of the committee to meet, appoint a chair and to finalize its terms etc. I have not been informed as yet from the national assembly that such a meeting has been called."
Sayonara Sarstoon S.I. Challenge
So much has been happening news-wise in 2016, that you might have to strain your memory to recall the "Sarstoon S-I." It was put out back in April of this year when Government wanted to shut down the Sarstoon so that no one could go in there and threaten the fragile relations which prevailed at the time. The S-I said that no one could enter the Sarstoon for a month.
But, things still ended up going south with Guatemala, and the SI was cancelled before even a month had passed. But the PUP still challenged it in court, on the basis that it restricted citizens' constitutional right to freedom of movement - and that the government had no authority to enact such a law.
Well, six months later, the Supreme Court struck out the PUP challenge, saying that it's now an academic matter since the law was revoked. The PUP's legal advisor Andrew Marshalleck was circumspect about the outcome:...
Herrera On Trial For Zeke's Murder
Charles "Bundy" Herrera is on trial for killing Ezekiel Medina in May of 2014. But the case has been going through a trial within a trial to determine whether a confession statement given by Herrera is admissible. Herrera took the witness stand and testified that the reason he gave the statement was because he thought that the DPP would not have charged him with murder. The grounds on which the caution statement was not admitted as evidence was that Herrera was taken to the police station at 7 in the morning and up until the time he gave the statement, which was about 12:45 p.m., he had not been fed or given any kind of refreshment. Justice Gonzalez was of the view that based on case law, this denial would have sapped the free will of Herrera, making the statement in admissible.
Cops For Human Traffic
Two Orange Walk police officers might be involved in a human trafficking ring. One Corporal of Police and a Police Constable have been detained in connection with human trafficking charges. The full details of the case have not been released as yet but we do know that the Professional Standards Branch in Belmopan is handling it. The Corporal of Police who is detained has a record, he has been disciplined before for misconduct. We will keep following this story.
The Fire Last Time
This week, the nation has faced a teacher's strike, and we've also seen bonfire on bridges in Belize City and the Hummingbird Highway.
That of course, evokes memories the troubles of 2005 when teachers struck for 10 school days between January 24 and February 7, and then in April of 2005, there was the famous bonfire on the Belcan Bridge, which then led to looting in downtown Belize City.
The social ferment at that time was far different than it is in 2016: there was much more agitation and discontent, and many more issues leading to national utility outages - most memorably a complete collapse of the phone system blocking out Belize form the world.
So when the bonfire was lit on the Belcan Bridge on the night of April 21, 2005, it came organically out of a movement, and a sentiment that had been building for months. And what caused the scales to tip in the favour of anarchy that evening is probably nothing more than poor police management of a rebellious crowd - which started with students. We look back briefly at the event of that evening:..
Micro Science Makes Major Move
The sciences are ever growing and competitive fields that are important for the growth and development of a country. Teaching our students the right materials, and instilling an appreciation for science is important to the advancement of science. That's why the UNESCO Global Micro-Science Project came to Belize. The project's goal is to give our educators a new way to engage their students in the sciences, and give them to skills to further their studies. We spoke to the people involved with the project about how it benefits Belize...
Orlando Medina, Science Curriculum Officer at Ministry of Education:
"Today we have teachers from high schools country wide, we have representation from all the districts. They're getting familiar with what we call a micro science tool that they can use for the science, biology, chemistry, physics and integrates science. Basically it is like a laboratory that's in the form of a small kit. They have experiments that they are conducting using these little kits and then they are getting their results. We're just familiarizing them with it because it is a tool that they will be using in their classes, the kits."
Calling all Soundboys
For the last four months, eleven Belizeans participated in NICH's Technical Audio Course. Today, they graduated with certificates proving that they have the skill needed to work audio in the radio and television industries, theatres, churches, and even for live performances and DJs. We spoke to the man who taught these new sound engineers everything they know.
So far, 25, people have graduated from the program. Everyone, not matter their age or experience level, is encouraged to take the classes. The program promises to provide students with the skills needed to do audio in the right way.
The Bust At Benque Bus Station
The Benque terminal has been closed down. While it certainly won't stop buses from coming in nor commuters from getting the bus, it will cause a major inconvenience with buses now having to park on the side of the road to off load and onload passengers. Also, the commuters will now have to stand in the sun and rain waiting for the bus. Now according to the terminal operator Thomas Shaw, all this could have been avoided if the bus companies would have paid their $3.00 a day fee to use the terminal. Shaw told us he took up operations at the terminal in March of this year. But it has been a lot of drama getting the bus companies to pay up. Shaw says one bus company owes him about $3,000. So he gave up and closed down the terminal on Friday the 7th. Shaw says he did the best he could for the comfort of the commuters and even tried to accommodate the bus companies by only charging $2.00 per day. But nothing worked so he says it is now up to the Mayor to address this terminal issue.
It's been two months since Hurricane Earl hit Belize, and many storm affected persons are still recovering. NEMO and Minister of State, Edmond Castro, have been working to provide homes for victims of the hurricane whose homes were damaged beyond repair. So far, 60 of the planned 180 houses have been built, 80 roofs have been repaired, and 1400 victims have been given necessary supplies.
Construction of all 180 houses is expected to be completed by early December.
B.N.T.U. Holds Countrywide Marches; Belize City Leads the Way
The Belize National Teachers’ Union led its members in mass demonstrations countrywide today, on this, the fourth day of a called strike. The union isn’t letting up as it continues [...]
Teachers’ Industrial Action Continues Into Fifth Day
After a momentous four days, the Belize National Teachers’ Union is trying to catch its breath and decide on a way forward. What we know for sure tonight is that [...]
Union Expresses Concerns About Extent of Finances to Continue Strike
As we mentioned earlier, the Belize National Teachers’ Union does have financial concerns, though there have been efforts made to raise donations in the community. The Union has a strike [...]
Will Papal Nuncio’s Declaration Sway Teachers to Return to School?
An example of the kind of pressure the teachers are facing beyond finances is the recent visit of Apostolic Nuncio to Belize and El Salvador, Archbishop Most Reverend Leon Kalenga. [...]
Roman Catholic Church Now Urges Teachers to Return to Classroom
Late this evening, the Roman Catholic Church stepped in line with the message from the Papal Nuncio. The Church says that they support the appeal for students and teachers to [...]
Opposition Leader Says Nuncio Should Have Consulted with B.N.T.U.
Roman Catholic Archbishop to Belize Leon Kalenga as we said has called on the Roman Catholic teachers to go back to the classroom. He urged that the B.N.T.U. and the [...]
Cordel Hyde Says Teachers Want Communication with Government
People’s United Party area representative for Lake Independence, Cordel Hyde, was one of several prominent politicians of the blue party to march in green with the teachers today. He is [...]
Orange Walk B.N.T.U. Draws Major Crowd for March and Rally
“We shall not moved” – that’s what teachers were chanting in the streets of Orange Walk Town today. Hundreds donning their signature green Tees congregated in the Queen Elizabeth Central [...]
Belmopan Teachers Out in Droves As Well
The teachers of the Belmopan Branch took to the streets, like their counterparts countrywide, this morning in the center of the capital city. They lined up at the Belmopan Comprehensive [...]
Brother to be Charged with Brother’s Murder in Orange Walk
A man was killed by his brother in Orange Walk on Wednesday evening. Forty-one year old Ruben Cain, a labourer of Flamboyant Street, was stabbed in the chest by his [...]
Police Hunt Persons Who Killed a Father in Front of His Family in Benque
There was another vicious murder that occurred overnight. A forty-five year old woodcarver was gunned down in bizarre circumstances in front of his wife and teenage daughter in his native [...]
Still No Decision by Chamber of Commerce on Support for Teachers
The strike by teachers continues in the headlines tonight, but for how long will the industrial action be sustained? One powerful organization that has not come out clearly in support [...]
Teachers’ Union Calls for Continued Community Support
But does the majority of Belizeans support the B.N.T.U.’s actions? That is a question more difficult to answer than to ask. There has been sustained pressure on teachers to return [...]
Cañero Leader Alfredo Ortega Rallies for Teachers
Earlier in the news we told you about the B.N.T.U. march that brought out hundreds in Orange Walk Town. Politicians, activists and other public figures joined the teachers today, including [...]
COLA’s Geovannie Brackett Appears in Orange Walk March
And if you missed the leader of COLA in the Belize City rally, it’s because he was in attendance at the Orange Walk parade. Geovannie Brackett said he was asked [...]
DYS Rep Speaks Out Against G.O.B.
The teachers were certainly fired up at this morning’s Belize City rally; and so was Shawn Saldano. If his name sounds familiar, it is because you probably know him from [...]
Education Minister Calls Fellow Minister’s Comment “Unfortunate”
Foreign Minister Wilfred has expressed strong sentiments about the teachers saying it was not in their remit to take on national issues. But that statement is not shared by all [...]
Luke Palacio Attacks Foreign Minister’s Comments
Not surprisingly, Elrington’s comments also struck a chord with the teachers. B.N.T.U. President Luke Palacio responded on Tuesday to the Minister’s commentary. Luke Palacio, National President, B.N.T.U. “In relation to [...]
Curiosity Kills “Sticks” – Now Charged with Belcan Bonfire
On Wednesday afternoon, six persons were hauled to the Belize City Magistrate Court – charged in connection with the burning of tires on BelCan Bridge on Monday afternoon. COLA President [...]
Chief Justice Drops Claim over Sarstoon S.I.
Today, Chief Justice Kenneth Benjamin struck out the constitutional challenge brought by the People’s United Party of the Sarstoon Law. The statutory instrument, which was passed by the Government, prohibited [...]
Is Sarstoon Challenge Now Over?
Back in May of 2016, PM Barrow in an interview with News Five said that, “the S.I. was to serve the limited purpose of ensuring that at the time the [...]
ICA Closes Audio Technicians’ Course
For the second year in a row, an audio technician course was held at by the Institute of Creative Arts organized by Audio and Sound Technician Whitfield Welch. The program [...]
Healthy Living visits the Mental Health Welcome Resource Center
October tenth is celebrated globally as World Mental Health Day. Belize has come a long way in recognizing the mental health needs of our society. But we continue to fight [...]
#518085 - 10/07/16 12:07 PM
Re: Today's Belize News: October 7, 2016
Papal Messenger urges Catholic teachers to go back to the classroom
The Catholic Archbishop, Léon Kalenga Badikebele, visited Belize on Wednesday, October 5, and he paid a courtesy call on Prime Minister Dean Barrow. He is the Apostolic Nuncio of Belize and El Salvador, and is a diplomat of the Holy See, the Catholic Church’s highest decision making body in the world, and he acts as the Pope’s Ambassador to Central America.
While he was in Belize, he spoke to the local press about a number of pressing issues, including the failing health of Bishop Dorrick Wright, and the fact that thousands of Catholic school children are out of classes because of a strike organized by the Belize National Teachers Union. When he was asked about his thoughts on the strike, he told the media that as a leader in the church, his first priority is to the children. They should be in the schools, not being punished by their teachers who are making demands of their Government. He said, “I have to look after the children….I don’t know what is the position in the matter, but I prefer children to be at school. That is the future of our country. If we are playing around with our children, we are killing them...
11 year old dies in fire
11 year-old Aaron Gabourel, a disabled child, passed away after being burnt alive when his family’s Belize City house went up in flames. His father, 34 year-old Winston Gabourel Sr., his other family members, 4 year-old Ian Carr, and 8 year-old Empress Hamilton, are hospitalized for burn injuries.
Ian Carr and Empress Hamilton are suffering from 90-95% burn injuries all over their body, and to save their lives, they will have to be flown abroad. It is believed that an arsonist set the fire which caused all this destruction. The entire family, which included the 4 burn victims along with 42 year-old Caroline Hamilton, 30 year-old Melissa Hamilton, and 11 year-old Jeremiah Hamilton, were all inside their home on #7 Aloe Vera Street. They reported to police that they saw a man who ran into the house, poured some sort of accelerant on the floor. He lit it on fire, and escaped in a boat, since their home is very near to the river.
Social Partners have majority on Senate Special Select Committee
The Prime Minister promised the Belizean people that there would be a Senate inquiry to review the Auditor General’s reports on the Immigration Department. That promise was fulfilled at the Senate Meeting on Friday, September 30.
On the order of business for that sitting, there were two motions proposed which were to be moved, one from Church Senator Ashley Rocke, and the other by PUP Senator Eamon Courtenay. Senator Rocke’s motion was allowed to be tabled, and he presented a motion from the church that the Senate Select Committee be appointed to look into the findings of the Auditor General. Following through with the Barrow Government’s Commitment to make this a reality, the 6 UDP Senators supported this motion, and so it is certain that Senate hearings will take place.
Senator Rocke moved the motion in which Churches made the recommendation that the Committee’s membership should reflect the current balance within the Senate. His motion, which was passed, now mandates, “That the Committee be appointed consisting of six Senators…
I understand that the Southside Masqueraders won the carnival competition this year, even though they were short of five of their star performers on center stage. I will explain shortly who failed to show up for practice for the SS Masqueraders.
On PUPS TV last week, Belize’s most renowned and foul-mouthed demagogue, LuisWade, looked directly into the camera and asked UDP supporters to rally behind the teachers. Let me state my feelings on this patronizing statement; before I will ever support the PUP teacher’s union, I better support Johnny Briceño since the latter is not faking to be a PUP—he shouts it out loud and clear. Why would I support a PUP like Luke Palacio who is a PUP masquerading as a trade unionist? Why would I support a PUP talk show host like Wade who is masquerading as a pastor? Why would I support Elena Alcala from Corozal who is a PUP branch chairman of the BNTU masquerading as a union leader?
Control your outcome
Youths literally control the future of the country and, most importantly, the future of their lives. Everything that we do today is likely to have a direct impact on the future, whether that impact be positive or negative.
So why not do something worthwhile? Why not make sure the effects are positive? It’s always easier said than done but it is possible. One aspect of life to strategically consider that has quite possibly the most resounding impact on our future stability, comfort, and standard of livings is to carefully evaluate the “right career”. The “right career” isn’t the career that necessarily pays the most or the one with the most luxuries associated with it. There is no way that the country of Belize, or anywhere for that matter, could survive with an influx of only doctors into the working world, or only lawyers, engineers, care givers, farmers, teachers, hospitality providers or any one single field of work. There needs to be a balance between all the necessary careers for the country to thrive in its productivity. So, then, it is necessary for each youth to assess his or her strengths and weaknesses, especially as it pertains to the education he or she will be subjected to.
WORDS OF LIFE with Barry Fraser
When I was twenty years old, I went back to school, after working for four years at an aluminum research facility. What changed my career path was meeting a dear retired farmer, who had moved into our village and attended our church. Mrs. Ward asked me if I would help her with her Sunday School Class of Primary School children.
I thought that I would just be helping her set out the tables and chairs, and making sure the children had their books, pencils, and crayons, and then tidying up afterwards. But Mrs. Ward got me to teach! From then I was hooked on teaching. After assisting her for two interesting years, I went to a church-run teacher training facility for three years of full-time education.
People join the teaching profession for various reasons. For some it is a job, for many a career, but for others it is a vocation. All teachers have a part to play in the raising up of the next generation, but it is now time to show that we value our teachers.
BNTU keeps moving and changing the goal post
Today marks 4 days that some teachers have been absent from their classrooms at the behest of the executive of their union , the BNTU . The executive of the union appears to be working for and on behalf of the People’s United Party . What we have noticed about the BNTU leadership is the uncanny ability they have in moving the goalposts in order to suit their needs. At first when they engaged government, it was about their 3% raise which was the third tranche of a three year salary increase they along with all government workers had negotiated for with government. Then as soon as the Special Audit Report was released and the PUP got embolden to enter the fray the BNTU changed and the chant then was “it is not only about the 3.” (3%).
That soon changed a few weeks ago after they had a demonstration in Belmopan, where some teachers carried a huge banner that suggested that it was all about the 3%. The 3 was completely taken off the table unbeknown to the teachers, by their president and his executive. It seems as if though President Luke has taken off his GREEN BNTU shirt and put on a BLUE PUP shirt. He is now a full time PUP and a PART-TIME BNTU President. This is the way he and the major players in the BNTU have been running the BNTU as if though it is an extension of the PUP. We had to search the PUP Constitution to see if the BNTU is in there as a Standing Committee of that party.
Catholic Archbishop Kalenga meets PM Barrow, calls for BNTU to return to negotiating table
Prime Minister Right Honorable Dean Barrow met with Archbishop Leon Kalenga, Papal Nuncio to Belize, this morning at the Prime Minister’s Belize City office.
Among other matters, the Prime Minister and the Vatican’s Emissary discussed the current Belize National Teachers’ Union strike, and the fact that so many Roman Catholic schools are among those closed by the strike. Archbishop Kalenga, as Representative of the Holy See, made clear that the interests of the children are paramount and that those interests require schools to be open and children and teachers to be in their classrooms.
The Archbishop therefore called for the BNTU to return to the negotiating table with Government and for teachers to return to school. Children should not be punished, the Archbishop said, and issues between the BNTU and Government needed to be worked out through dialogue and not school closure. Prime Minister Barrow welcomed the Archbishop’s, and therefore the Catholic Church’s, position, and repeated Government’s own call for the BNTU to suspend its strike and resume the discussions with GOB on the 3% salary adjustment and the good governance agenda.
What makes the 13th Senator so bogus?
Currently, Belize’s Senate has twelve senators, six appointed on advice of the Government, three on the advice of the Opposition and one each on advice of the Churches, Business community and the unions. There has been much talk of adding a thirteenth senator who would be appointed by the NGOs. In fact this talk led to a constitutional amendment to modify the composition of the senate and make the appointment of this thirteenth senator possible. All that remains to be done is for the necessary order to be signed for enabling the law to come into effect.
However, wiser heads prevailed and on reflection, it was realized that the appointment of this thirteenth senator would not provide the so called desired “check and balance” but would basically create deadlock in the operations of government. You see by the simple stroke of a pen, to allow the law for the appointment of the thirteenth senator to take effect, the constitutionally elected majority would then become a minority in the Senate. Some would argue that is not a problem as such because in the Senate, there is more mature debate and the social partners generally consider the merits of the legislation being proposed and do not necessarily oppose just for opposing sake.
BNTU bat for Mose, PUP, COLA, BPP, VIP… but not for the students and not for Belize
The big thieves PUP are broke and very hungry! They cannot wait to get their greedy paws on the PEOPLES’ money. In desperation, they clutch at every straw, every shadow! Recently they have lost every election, so they are looking to others to return them to power. Big dummy Luke Palacio, a rejected PUP candidate, feels that he can rescue the PUP, and redeem himself. It is well known that Luke Palacio ran on a PUP slate and lost; Luke’s agenda is of a partisan political nature. It is also well known that now Mrs. Edgar Flowers’ first child was fathered by Mose. Kremandala has declared that it is 100% behind Cordel, a PUP official! It is also well known that Mose addressed the BNTU two weeks ago! Whenever I see Luke, Mose and Mrs. Edgar Flowers together on the WUB Morning Show, all in green shirts; I realize that I am actually watching a PUP move; engineered by Krem. I wondered why the three were not in fact wearing blue and white. They throw stones, but hide their hands! It is an extremely smart move to have Luke and Mrs. Edgar Flowers front the play, bring on board the BNTU and then the teachers; smart but nefarious! Nefarious, because nothing is more corrupt than the Criminal Gang!
Belizean students in top Taiwan medical university
The future of Belize is in great hands! There are young men and women accessing advanced level education all over the world and many of them are excelling in their field of study. Medical students from Belize usually pursue their degree in Cuba, Guatemala, Mexico or the United States. However, thanks to a new program at I-Shou University launched in 2013, Belizean students can now pursue their medical degree and certification at one of the top universities and teaching hospitals in the world.
Paul Morgan Jr. and Javier Alpuche are the first two Belizeans to take advantage of this program. It is called the School of Medicine for International Students. The school opened its doors to 40 students for the first time in September of 2013 and everything in the facility is brand new- from the door knobs to the high powered microscopes. The curriculum is taught in English and is designed to focus specifically on challenges doctors face in the ally countries. Individuals from most of Taiwan’s ally countries have taken advantage of the opportunity since it was made available in 2013 but no Belizeans did so until Morgan and Alpuche this year.
CCJ splits payment due to Ascroft for BTL down the middle
After trying its best to ensure that Lord Michael Ashcroft honors the verbal terms he had agreed to, the Barrow Government will respect the ruling of the Caribbean Court of Justice. The country will have to find 67 million US dollars more to pay the Ashcroft Alliance for the BTL settlement. Also, Lord Ashcroft will get 50% of 500 million dollar settlement, which is 10% more than he agreed to verbally.
The court arrived at that ruling after analyzing the written contract that the Prime Minister signed on behalf of the Country when the 2015 Telemedia Acquisitions Settlement Act was passed into law. The CCJ judges, in their reasoning, say that the Government must honor the natural meaning of the written terms. They were critical of the attorneys who drafted the settlement deed, commenting that a judge should “avoid rewriting it in an attempt to assist an unwise party, or to penalize an astute party”.
Chancing the Ghetto Youth
Dianne Finnegan, Director of the Youth Apprenticeship Programme, has been terribly upset since the moment word came that three members of the programme had been arrested and charged for setting tires on fire at the middle of Belcan Bridge on Monday, October 3. Adrian Avaloy, 23, Clayburn Pascascio and a minor were arrested and charged on Tuesday for setting a bonfire. They were taken to court on Wednesday, October 5, to be arraigned for those charges. However, Mrs. Finnegan went to court and expressed her frustration at the individuals she accuses of leading the youth astray with financial incentives, COLA’s Geovanni Brackett and community organizer Perry Smith.
“THIS IS A POLITICAL AGENDA and THOSE MEDIA HOUSES should now RAISE NOISE and call out THOSE INVOLVED who paid 3 of my youth to carry out THEIR POLITICAL AGENDA,” posted Finnegan on her Facebook page. Brackett and Smith may have been the subject of Mrs. Finnegan’s anger on Wednesday but her charge is not squared solely on them.
CJ says Evangelical Association not an interested party in Section 53 case
The National Evangelical Association of Belize, not the legally recognized Association of Evangelical Churches of Belize, applied for permission to be listed as interested parties in the appeal of the Section 53 ruling by Chief Justice Kenneth Benjamin. The association was represented in court on Tuesday, October 4, by Anthony Sylvestre. Unfortunately for the spirited group, the Chief Justice did not even entertain the application. Chief Justice Benjamin rejected the application because the association was not an interested party in the case being appealed; therefore, they can not be allowed to now make submissions in front of the Court of Appeals.
Anthony Sylvestre tried to scramble and get the assistance of a much more capable attorney, Dickie Bradley, to make presentations to the court. However, the Chief Justice had already made up his mind and informed Sylvestre that no time will be granted for him to consult with Bradley. There was nothing Sylvestre could present in law that would convince the Chief Justice to allow the association in on the appeal.
GOB sets date to sign UN Convention against Corruption
Cabinet agreed today to accept the recommendation of the Government/ Belize Chamber of Commerce & Industry Working Group on the Implementation of the United Nations Convention against Corruption (UNCAC) to sign the UNCAC on December 9, 2016, which is the International Day Against Corruption.
By that date, the joint GOB/BCCI Working Group fully expects to have determined the scope of the necessary measures, including legislative and administrative measures, to ensure the proper implementation of Belize’s obligations under the Convention after signing.
No more Days of Biting
Perry “Sticks” Smith has been arrested and charged for his alleged role in setting tires on fire on the Belcan Bridge on Monday, October 3. Sticks was charged along with COLA President, Geovanni Brackett, and two others for starting the blaze that impeded the flow of traffic during rush hour and compromised the structure of a major bridge in the population capital.
Brackett’s involvement in this blaze came as a shock to no one. However, Smith is an individual who passes himself off as a man of peace. Over the last couple of years he has organized community events across the city in gang controlled neighbourhoods to provide spiritual relief for residents of those oppressed areas. He calls the events “Days of Healing” and publicly advocates for peace in the city. However, peace was the last thing on his mind during the teachers’ strike on Monday.
New Destination Belize Magazine takes readers on memorable adventures
Perhaps even more than people interested in visiting the jewel, Belizeans need to get a copy of the new and improved Destination Belize magazine. Just spend a few minutes in the text and you will be packing your bags – ready for an adventure.
My favourite piece in the magazine was written by Gonzalo Pleitez entitled “Journey through the underworld”. Pleitez writes about the Aktun Tunichil Muknal (ATM) caves in the Cayo District and its significance to the Mayas for whom the caves represented an entrance to the underworld, a place of evil and death. In his description of the landscape of Belize and the physical make up of the system, Pleitez writes, “the landscape of Belize was formed leaving features resembling chunks of Swiss cheese- with holes piercing throughout the land.” Pleitez chronicled how the caves went from a place where no Maya would venture to one where they would gather to make offerings to malevolent gods. He also gave a very valid reason as to why this intriguing system remained almost untouched even in the modern world: “As Belizeans we boast about our caves, but we ‘fraid fi duende.” This is a joke thrown into the piece but many of our ancestors were truly deadly afraid of Duende and other legends that lurk in areas such as the jungle and underground caves.
Corozal Free Zone signs contract for infrastructure works
On Friday, September 30, 2016 the Corozal Free Zone signed a contract to invest $2.5 million in infrastructure works.
The project was designed by Young’s Engineering Consultancy Ltd. It includes the installation of storm water drain, sidewalks, parking areas, roundabout, pedestrian ramps; complete resurfacing with hotmix of the main thoroughfare known as “Freedom Avenue”, traffic signs and traffic markings. It also includes drains to alleviate the water that settles in front of the Las Vegas Hotel and Casino.
The project was awarded to Belize Roadway Construction Limited of Belmopan City after successful bidding. Young’s Engineering Consultancy Ltd. has also been contracted as the supervising company for quality assurance. Funding for the project was secured through a Bond raised by private and institutional investors, the administration of the Corozal Free Zone, and the Government of Belize. The works are estimated to be completed in six months.
Goldson House in Belmopan holds open days
Belize’s National Hero, Phillip Stanley Wilberforce Goldson is once again being remembered for his good work for the Belizean people. The Goldson House for Democracy and Patriotism, which is located at number 82 Orange Street in Belmopan, held an open day on Monday and Tuesday of this week in honoring this great hero.
Kendra Griffith, House coordinator of the Goldson House is inviting schools and members of the public to learn more about Belize’s pioneer in the social, economic and political spheres. Opened on September 28, 2015, the Goldson House is also celebrating its one year anniversary. Operated by the Institute for Social and Cultural Research, within the National Institute of Culture and History, the Goldson House is open daily from 9:00 am to 3:00 pm and contact can be made with them at 822-2613.
Talk on human rights made in Santa Elena, Cayo
The President of the Human Rights Commission of Belize HRCB met with residents of Santa Elena in the Cayo District on Wednesday of last week at the Santa Elena Baptist Church at the corner of Carillo Puerto Avenue and George Price Avenue. Attorney-at-Law, Leo Bradely Junior met briefly to sensitize residents on what the HRCB is doing to enhance their human rights.
According to Leo Bradley the HRCB has been conducting human rights training with police and prisoners and would like to expand the training to immigration officers. He said that HRCB was a voluntary, nongovernmental, non partisan organization.
As part of the day’s activities, Leo Bradley distributed two documents, the first being on the Universal Declaration of Human Rights and the other on the new criminal guidelines for interviewing and treatment of persons in police detention.
Minister of State for NEMO Hon. Edmond Castro assesses progress of Hurricane Earl recovery & rebuilding efforts in rural Belize District
Minister of State for National Emergency Management Hon. Edmond Castro has met with National Emergency Management Organization (NEMO) co-ordinators in Rural Belize District to assess the progress of the recovery and rebuilding efforts for victims of Hurricane Earl, which made landfall in Belize exactly two months ago on August 4, 2016.
The rebuilding efforts have included construction of homes and assistance with material for needed repairs such as lumber and zinc. In the Belize District, material has been distributed from the NEMO Office and Warehouse on the Phillip Goldson Highway near the Burrell Boom Junction, with loading, transportation and offloading assistance by the Belize Defence Force.
Brackett condemns himself
On Monday morning as the members of the BNTU Executives were making an appearance on Krem’s Radio/TV WUB Morning Talkshow, four police officers were seen outside the Kremandala’s compound . These officers had been dispatched to that location by the Belize City Eastern Division South-side Commander Assistant Commissioner Chester Williams. According to Williams, he had deployed the unit there along with Mobil patrols in the area as a part of a security detail to protect the BNTU who were set to embark on strike action to be able to carry out their plan of action, without interference from persons who may not agree with their actions and to prevent outsiders who may want to take advantage of the situation and embark on a criminal path under the guise of saying they were supporting the BNTU in their strike action.
A little truth serum anyone?
It would appear that last Sunday, before showing up for the KremSunday Review talkshow with YaYa Marin, Bill Lindo had a small drink of some truth serum because he finally began to make some sense and spoke quite a bit of truth for a change.
Bill began his confessions by describing the Rt. Hon. Manuel Esquivel as a good and honest man. Bill explained that the problems Mr. Esquivel faced in the 1993 – 1998 term were principally because people did not want to accept the truth of what Mr. Esquivel was saying – that we were living well beyond our means and that we could not continue to credibly sustain an economy where we import so much more than we export. As a result, the voters eventually rejected the type of austerity that had to be imposed on the economy.
Bill further confessed that what really sunk the UDP and Mr. Esquivel in the 1998 election is that big business interests’ money, principally from the Ashcroft Alliance and Bowen, flocked to the PUP. It will be recalled that both Michael Ashcroft and Barry Bowen were both knighted by the PUP not too long after that election victory and Sir Barry even got a senatorship.
Who set the fire on Belcan?
Geovannie Brackett, one of the chief mischief makers within COLA, had to hand himself into police for questioning. He and 4 others are suspected of cooking up that childish plot to burn tires on the Belcan Bridge.
That happened at around at around 4 p.m. on Monday, October 3. That was the first day of the teachers strike when the leadership was gathered at the BNTU branch office in Belize City. Some individuals organized themselves to quickly assemble a pile of tires on the Bridge. They were then set on fire, and those conspirators then fled the area while the commotion forced a shutdown of the bridge during the evening rush hour traffic.
The Cleghorn Street Fire station was only a few minutes away, and when the firefighters saw the rising black smoke, they sprang into action. With the help of the police who kept the public away, the fire was put out in only a few minutes. The police also detained Belize City residents Fitz Howard and Perry Smith, and they were taken in for questioning.
Copper Bank fisherman charged for out of season conch
A Copper Bank Fisherman, Benigno Lorenzo Cobb, 37, is out on bail after he was arraigned for being in possession of 314 conch during the closed season. Fisheries Officer Hampton Gamboa busted Cobb with the harvest on Friday, September 30, just Southeast of Northern Caye on the Lighthouse Reef Atoll.
Cobb was arraigned before Magistrate Carlon Mendoza on Tuesday, October 4, where he was read a single charge of possession of conch during the closed season. The closed season is July 1 to September 30. Cobb was caught on the last day; presumably trying to get a jump on the market. In court, he was unrepresented and pleaded not guilty to the charge. He is challenging the Fisheries Department to prove its case in a trial against him. The case is being prosecuted by Calman Hall. Since he pleaded not guilty, Magistrate Mendoza offered bail in the sum of $3,500 plus one surety of the same amount. The case was adjourned for November 25, 2016.
Interdicted cop’s trial date set
Interdicted police officer, Urbie Alamilla, 35, has received full disclosure for a charge of discharging a firearm in public and will be tried in front of Magistrate Carlon Mendoza on December 2, 2016.
Police Constable Urbie Alamilla is facing a charge of discharging a firearm in public. According to police reports, they responded to a shot fired at Green Jade Restaurant in Ladyville at about 10:52 p.m. on Saturday, June 18. Upon their arrival, officers observed a 9 mm expended shell on the floor of the restaurant. They were approached by Sharmaine Bainton who informed them that PC Alamilla was drunk and just fired his firearm inside the restaurant. Police say they were also met by Ashley Haylock of Burrell Boom Village who informed them that he had an altercation with a fellow he knows as “Borland” and Alamilla drew a gun, fired a shot towards the floor and left the establishment.
Parents charged for teenager breaking curfew
Stephanie Ortiz, 31, and her common-law husband Solomon Francis Alvarez, 47, were taken to court on Monday, October 3, for “allowing a child to be unsupervised”. The 14-year-old child was found hanging out at around 10:40 p.m. on Glen Street in Belize City. As a result of the child being found on the streets without a parent or guardian, the mother and step-father were detained and charged.
According to Alvarez, who sells newspapers to earn a living, the child is his step-son and does not live with him and his common-law-wife. Ortiz told the court that her son is living with her mother. Both questioned why it is that they were charged for the offense when the child is not even living with them. While Magistrate Ford agreed with their position to a degree, she also informed them that though the child is living with his grandmother they are still legally responsible for him. Ortiz and Alvarez told the court that the boy has an uncontrollable behaviour and that he does not listen to them when they speak.
Jesse Mejia arraigned for attempted murder
Jesse Mejia, 21, has been wanted by Ladyville police since a chopping incident in the village on September 10 and he is finally in custody. On Monday, October 3, he appeared before Magistrate Aretha Ford where five charges were read against him: attempted murder, dangerous harm, use of deadly means of harm, wounding and aggravated assault with a machete.
Police reports are that Mejia got into an altercation with Frank Robert Tejeda and his brother Leroy Tejada on Saturday morning, September 10, 2016. According to reports, during the dispute Mejia pulled out a machete and chopped the two brothers on their hands and face. The brothers were rushed to the Karl Heusner Memorial Hospital where they underwent treatment for their injuries and were listed in a stable condition.
Felipe Montejo cleared of molestation charge
Well-known Belizean tailor, Felipe Montejo, 66, is a free man after the father of the child who accused him of sexual molestation informed Chief Magistrate Anne Marie Smith that they want no further court action.
On Wednesday, November 11, 2015, Montejo was taken to the Belize City Magistrate’s Court to answer to a single charge of sexual assault upon the 14-year-old girl. The child alleged that sometime in the month of August 2015, between 3 and 4 p.m., she visited Golden Scissors Tailor Shop to get help to do her homework and while inside his shop Montejo unbuttoned her school uniform and touched her on her private parts. Montejo at the age of 66 was lucky to have been granted bail. Normally, someone accused of such an act is denied bail and remanded at the Belize Central Prison. Montejo was granted bail of $2,500 and was set to be tried on Friday, September 30.
Bradley Paumen allowed to leave the country
Bradley Paumen is the Belizean American who has been in the news for allegedly putting a hit on Michael Moderi’s life after a land dispute. He and three others: mechanic Lisburn Anderson; Belmopan businessman Jahan Abadi, and Korean American Hyang Choing Park have been charged by Belmopan police with the offences of the perversion of justice and conspiracy to pervert justice.
All four are accused of trying to plant a .22 rifle and 150 live rounds of ammunition in Michael Modiri’s vehicle in April 2015. Hyang Choing Park, is former common-law wife of Michael Modiri, and police are accusing her of being involved in the plot to set up her ex. Park was charged for hiring policeman Solomon Mas to act as her hitman. Abadi is accused of facilitating a key to get into Modiri’s vehicle so that the weapon and ammunition could be planted. They were initially arraigned on these charges on Thursday, January 28, in the Belmopan Magistrate’s Court. Paumen was first to be arraigned and represented by Senior Counsel Ellis Arnold before Justice Antoinette Moore on Thursday, January 14. Paumen is facing charges of abetment to commit murder and the Director of Public Prosecutions raised strong objections to bail. Cheryl-Lynn Vidal argued passionately that Paumen should be remanded because he is a flight risk.
Two charged for stolen vehicle that contained a licensed gun
A vehicle belonging to Ricardo Gongora was stolen with his licensed 9 mm pistol inside and two Belize City residents have been charged for the act. Dion Brandon Bennett, 35, aka “Buzzu” of the Ghost Town Crips was arraigned jointly with Denise Stewart, 24, for taking Gongora’s Ford F-150 without authority. Bennett alone was charged for the offense of theft for the gun and other items inside Gongora’s vehicle.
The duo appeared before Magistrate Aretha Ford on Monday, October 3, where Stewart asked if she could plead guilty to taking a conveyance without authority and be imposed a fine since it is her first offense. Magistrate Ford explained that the offense carries a custodial sentence of up to three years imprisonment. The mother of six children, three girls and three boys, was not prepared to leave her children and entered a not guilty plea.
Teacher arraigned for aggravated assault of a police officer
Sometime between 12 noon and 1 p.m. on Friday, September 30, a mother and Gwen Lizarraga High School teacher, Gladys Paredez, 41, lost control of her temper and tried to attack someone at the Belize Family Court. However, police officers intervened and the teacher was restrained by four officers. The first officer to try and restrain the teacher was PC #498 Dominique Hutchinson. Officer Hutchinson received several scratches on his left hand during the incident and as a result Paredez was charged with aggravated assault and harm.
Instead of being on the picket line with other teachers on Monday, October 3, Paredez was in the courtroom of Magistrate Aretha Ford. In court, Teacher Paredez was unrepresented and when asked how she pleaded she said, “Could be both, that depends… if he had not assaulted me first, I would not have assaulted him.” With those words, Magistrate Ford entered a not guilty plea on her behalf.
Long Caye resident cleared of rape charge
Long Caye resident Pedro Trujeque walked free from a charge of rape after the DPP’s office submitted a nolle prosequi in the trial against him on Friday, September 30, because the alleged victim could not be located.
Trujeque was accused of raping a Honduran woman, in her 20s, on Long Caye on February 11, 2014. The woman made a report and requested court action but according to sources she just could not take living in Belize any more and left the country nine days after the incident and has not returned since. The woman claimed she came to Belize looking for a job and Trujeque told her he had a job for her. He invited her to the island where he had the job for her. One day after working, she told him that she was leaving the island to go get her passport stamped. He walked her to the dock and while waiting, rain came so they had to run into the house. According to the woman, that is when Trejuque asked her for a kiss and when she refused to kiss him he raped her.
Belize Bank Bulldogs repeat as National Women’s Softball Champions
The Belize Softball Federation held its XXVI National Women’s Softball Championship from September 30-October 2, 2016, at Rogers Stadium in Belize City.
On Sunday 2nd October, 2016, in the championship game, the two times defending champions the Belize Bank Bulldogs defeated the BTL team in six innings by the score of 9-2 to capture the women’s title for the third time in as many years.
BTL batting in the top of the 1st inning scored the 1st run of the game when its leader off hitter Lydia Cacho opened the game with an infield single. Cacho later scored on a fielders’ choice when Noricia Frazier grounded out to the second baseman.
In the bottom of the 2nd inning, the budding champions tied the score at 1-1 when shortstop Sherette Vernon opened the inning with a single to centre field advanced on a pass ball by the catcher Earlene Belisle, advanced to third base on a fielder’s choice and scored on a wild pitch.
BTL scored its 2nd run of the game in the top of the third inning when Lydia Cacho doubled to left field and scored on a fielder’s choice.
CYDP football competition continue at the MCC Grounds
The Conscious Youth Development Programme Football competition continued at the MCC Grounds with a number of games played on Sunday and Saturday October 1st and 2nd respectively.
On Sunday 2nd October, in the only game played Ebony Lake FC and Kings Park Strikers FC played to a 3-3 draw. The goals for Kings Park Strikers FC were scored by Patrick Max (2) and Latrelle Middleton, while the goals for Ebony Lake FE were scored by Manu McCaulay, Jermaine Zuniga and Marguise Stamp.
On Saturday 1st October, in the first game played, Yabra FC defeated Police Street by the score of 3-1. The goals for Yabra FC were scored by Delroy Andrews(2) and Germaine Foster. For the Police Street squad, the goal was scored by Tevin Robinson.
Belmopan Bandits maintain lead in Premier League competition
The Premier League of Belize Opening Season Tournament continued over the last weekend with four games on the schedule.
On Saturday 1st October, 2016, at the Isidoro Beaton Stadium in Belmopan, the defending champions the Belmopan Bandits defeated Verdes FC by the score of 2-0. The goals for Belmopan Bandits were scored by Aloision Teixiera in the 33rd minute of play and again in the 71st minute of play via a penalty kick.
On Sunday 2nd October, 2016, at the MCC Grounds the host team Belize Defence Force and FC Belize played to a 1-1 draw. The Belize Defence Force was the first to get onto the scoreboard when Michael Myvette scored the 1st goal of the game in the 41st minute of play to give his team a 1-0 lead. The first half of the game ended 1-0 in favour of the Belize Defence Force.
Sugar City Hoops rolls on in Orange Walk
The Sugar City Hoops Basketball competition continues in Orange Walk Town at the Orange Walk Multi-Purpose Complex and the East Sports Complex.
On Saturday 1st October, 2016, at the East Sports Complex in the 17 and under competition, Ever Ballaz defeated Technical High School by the score of 45-36. The top scorers for Ever Ballaz were Tyrique Dawson with 21 points, 6 rebounds, 2 assists and 4 steals; Diego Alvarez with 9 points and 3 rebounds and Elrick Tillett with 8 points, 18 rebounds, 3 steals, 2 blocks and 1 assist. For Technical High School the top scorers were Clinton Shaw with 18 points, 10 rebounds, 3 assists and 1 steal; Henry Higinio with 7 points, 2 rebounds, and 2 assists and a steal and Brython Bull with 5 points.
In the 25 and under competition, Jumani won handily over Belize Road Bullets by the score of 108-74. The top scorers for Jumani were Roger Reneau with 17 points. 7 rebounds, 4 steals, 3 assists and 1 block; Shemar White with 15 points, 7 rebounds, 1 block and 1 steal, Charlton Flowers with 15 points, 2 rebounds, 2 steals and 2 assists and Raul Vanegas with 10 points, 6 rebounds, 7 assists and 2 steals.
International Day of Older Persons and Senior Citizens Week Celebrated
On October 1 Belize along with the rest of the world celebrated International Day of Older Persons. The United Nations is marking the International Day of Older Persons by encouraging countries to draw attention to and challenge negative stereotypes and misconceptions about older persons and ageing, and to enable older persons to realize their potential to build a life of dignity and human rights.
The theme for this year’s celebration is: “Taking A Stand Against Ageism.” Ageism is the discrimination of any person based on their age. A press release from the National Council of Ageing states that approximately 6% of Belize’s population is an older person and that each year this population continues to grow and it is projected that by 2040 this number will have more than doubled to 18%.
Many older persons continue to be the back bone of their families contributing through child care, housekeeping and other domestic tasks that go unrecognized and unpaid. October 1st offered us an opportunity to show appreciation and recognition to older persons for their contributions and also to recognize the challenges that come with ageing.
Iconic Belizean passes
On Tuesday morning we were saddened to learn that Belize had lost one of it best citizens in the person of Ms. Norma Sutherland . Ms Norma as she was more affectionately known was a great teacher, parent and motivator. She had a passion for teaching and her students came first. The Guardian through myself had a personal contact with her. My first encounter with Ms Norma was about 35 years ago when I was a student at the then BJSS #2 now Gwen Liz High school. I never personally had her as a teacher but I saw the way she handled the young ladies she taught. My next encounter with her was about 30 years later when both of us tutored at Samuel Haynes Institute of Excellence. I certainly learnt a lot from her. My lasting image of her would be the way she got down and sat in the little chairs used by the infants 1 & 2 students. She did so to make eye contact. For her to die at this time during all that’s going on with our teachers reminds us that there were once great teachers. We could use those former teachers as a sort of gauge of where we are in regards to the quality of our teachers. Her motto and driving force was that it was all about the children.
#518087 - 10/07/16 12:07 PM
Re: Today's Belize News: October 7, 2016
The Belize Times
SIMPLE SEDI SEH TEECHAZ NOH READY!
In an interview granted to the media on Saturday, October1, 2016, Minister of Foreign Affairs and Pickstock Area Representative Wilfred ‘Sedi’ Elrington took the opportunity to express GOB’s opinion of teachers, coming out of a UDP National Party Council Meeting to address the BNTU’s industrial action. According to Sedi, the teachers should not really be dabbling in matters like corruption and good governance and those pesky social and political issues. He told the astonished media that, “It is not my understanding that they have the remit really to take on all the issues of the country, and I don’t even know whether they have the wisdom or the ability or the competence to deal with those issues.” The brazen insult by a senior Minister of Government is nothing new to the teachers who have had to endure vicious attacks from UDP operatives who have accused them of being “illiterate” and “money-hungry.” BNTU President Luke Palacio has been singled out for special attention, accused of misguiding teachers and persuading them to push a PUP agenda. This UDP government has continued to underestimate the teachers even as support countrywide grows and other entities have allied themselves with the fight for good governance.
COLA President Charged for Belcan Bridge Bonfire
This morning at 8:00am COLA President Geovanni Brackett and Perry “Sticks” Smith, accompanied by their attorney Kareem Musa, handed themselves in to Precinct One Police. They were charged with “causing a bonfire to be set” on the Belcan Bridge. Two minors and 23-year-old Adrian Avaloy were charged with “setting a bonfire.” ACP Chester Williams who was at Precinct One while Brackett and Smith were being charged affirmed that the Police have never been known to stifle activists and he was not following any political directive to charge the accused. He would not disclose what evidence they have gathered so far but stated that they have methodically conducted their investigation to get all the necessary evidence to lay charges.
CFZ CEO Terminated With Extreme Prejudice
The Belize Times has confirmed that politically appointed CEO of the Corozal Commercial Free Zone Raul Rosado was terminated, with immediate effect, on Friday, October 1, 2016. Rosado, who ran for office under the UDP, is related through family to former Deputy Prime Minister Gaspar Vega, and is also the Chairman of Minister of Health Pablo Marin’s Corozal Bay constituency. Reports are that Rosado’s termination is a result of serious and chronic wrongdoing which was brought to the attention of CFZ Executive Chairman Gregory Gibson by the Corozal Free Zone Chamber of Commerce.
GOB Conspiracy to Discredit Bishop Dorick Wright..?
A leaked BNTU letter in which President Luke Palacio asks Catholic Bishop Dorick Wright for a meeting has raised serious alarm. In the short letter, the BNTU expresses gratitude to the Bishop and to the Catholic Church for “the tremendous support given to us throughout our fight for Good Governance, Accountability and Transparency from the Government of Belize.” But it continues, “We also wish to express our deepest disappointment with the disrespect shown to you and your office by Sister Barbara (General Manager of Catholic Pubic Schools) and hereby reiterate our support for you as Leader of the Catholic Church in Belize.
Having seen the manner in which matters have been dealt with, compounded by the visit of the Papal Nuncio, as well as the alleged attempt at your removal, we wish to meet with you at your earliest convenience to discuss these and other matters that are of concern to our Catholic teachers and Union.”
THINK ABOUT IT
Dean Barrow took over the Senate last Friday. With 6 UDP Senators and the President who is also a UDP, Dean “Whiff of Corruption” Barrow decided he would impose his will on the people of Belize. He had decided three weeks ago that there would be no Senate Select Committee to investigate the Immigration corruption scandal. He proposed that a Bi-Cameral Committee of a few Senators and a majority of Ministers in the House of Representatives was the only way to have an investigation. This was to be his way or no way. As a result, the proposal for a Senate Select Committee was defeated. At that Senate meeting, the Senator representing the churches did a strange thing. He spoke in favour of a Senate Select Committee but when it came to a vote he voted with the government/UDP Senators and defeated the motion. The people of Belize and the various social partner groups were alarmed. The Chamber of Commerce and Industry, which initially had been hoodwinked into agreeing with Barrow to undermine a Senate Select Committee, changed their minds and publicly supported the Senate Select Committee.
Yabra FC, Kelly Street, Coast Guard & Police FC Win in CYDP Football
Yabra FC, Kelly Street, Coast Guard and Police FC all won in Week 3 of the Conscious Youth Development Programme football competition at the MCC Garden over the weekend.
In Game 1 Saturday morning, Yabra Strikers won 3-1 vs. Police FC when Germaine Foster scored the 1st goal and Delroy “Thinman” Andrews soon added 2 more. Tevin Robinson scored Police FC’s only goal.
In Game 2 Saturday, Kelly Street FC won 4-2 vs Survivors United with goals by Steven “Bredds” Baizar, Francis Andrews and 2 from Kadeem Myers. Survivors’ Clinton Gill and Khambrel Blease scored a goal apiece in their loss.
Team Belize Wins 3rd place at FIVB World Qualifiers
Team Belize won the bronze medal with a 4 win – 2 loss record at the Central American regional qualifiers to the FIVB World Championships, hosted by the Belize Volleyball Association (BVA) at the St. Catherine Academy center in Belize City last week September 24-30. The win also broke a 16-year drought of not reaching the medal podium in any major tournament!
Belize’s 4th win came Friday night, as Belize took all 3 sets: 25-16, 26-24 and 25-15. Bryton Codd led the attack with 14pts, while Karym Coleman and Keith Castillo hammered home 13pts apiece. The Hondurans conceded 23 pts to Belize on errors, while Belize made 20 errors.
Belize had posted their 2nd win vs. Panama last Monday: 25-21, 25-12, 20-25, and 25-17, also getting 38pts from Panama’s errors.
Bandits Still No.1 in PLB Football
The undefeated Belmopan Bandits are still No.1 in the Premier League of Belize with 6 wins in Week 8 of the opening season tournament, while undefeated FC Belize fell to the No. 2 spot by a 1-1 draw with the Belize Defence Force at the MCC Garden on Sunday.
The BDF scored first when Michael Myvette put some finesse on a pass from Paul Nunez for the finish into the net, BDF: 1-0 in the 41st minute. Oliver Hendricks equalized for FC Belize from the penalty spot in the 55th minute: 1-1.
Questions to Ministers
Would the Member for Queen Square and Prime Minister please confirm or deny reports that he is actively acting to remove Roman Catholic Bishop Dorick Wright because the Church has supported teachers and condemned corruption in this government?
Would the Member for Queen Square and Prime Minister please state which Cabinet Ministers actively lobbied for the removal of his CEO Audrey Wallace on the grounds that as a member of the LGBT community she is bad for the government’s image?
Would the Member for Collet and Minister of Education please say whether he has sought help for his problem which has been causing an embarrassment to his Party? Could he further say whether it is true that he has been asked by high-ranking members of the UDP to seek counselling?
MY PERSPECTIVE – THE TEACHERS AND MLK
A young friend of mine who is taking an Ethics course at the University of Belize told me recently that the teacher had asked them to read Martin Luther King Jr.’s “Letter From A Birmingham Jail.” Right away I told myself that I would go and read it again, having read it in college in the United States many years ago.
In April 1963 Martin Luther King Jr. (MLK) had already emerged as the leader of the Civil Rights Movement in the United States. The Montgomery Bus Boycott which made Rosa Parks famous had taken place, and MLK and other civil rights activists had formed the Southern Christian Leadership Conference. Things had not been going well when the campaign began in Birmingham, Alabama against racial segregation and economic injustice, and so MLK and others led marches and sit-ins, and they openly violated laws which they considered unjust.
Fortune Favours the Bold
Although grace of God and blessings of elders bring achievements, a hardworking and sincere person gets the cooperation of all due to his bravery. Fortune or destiny smiles on him because he dares to achieve the goal.
Always luck goes hand in hand with people who dare to work out for enforcing something new to traditional systems. Only those people get positions in history that show bravery and fight against the prejudiced customs and rituals. In other words, those who move against the flow of the stream are heroes, not the persons who swim with the flow of the steam.
Fear is a state of mind and unless and until one thinks more and more positively, bravery will not come. To progress and prosper one has to be bold enough to cross the hurdles in the path of destination. Challenges and obstacles are ever present in the way of life and if it is decided strongly to achieve the goal nobody can stop the person. Gandhi, Abraham Lincoln and George Cadle Price are the best examples of this, and the popular saying “fortune favors the brave” fits them perfectly.
Thinking Out Loud
As I write this, teachers countrywide have decided that they will extend the strike at least two more days. I have said it before and I will say it again. As the Mayor of Orange Walk Town, as a parent, as a Belizean and as a man I could not be more proud of these men and women who are fighting the good fight. They are demanding that this worthless UDP administration do the right thing – that’s all – just do the right thing and be a responsible government. What could ever be wrong with that? I can tell you that when we took office here in Orange Walk nobody knew how monies were being spent. All they knew was that money was going in and coming out and voters did not feel that they were getting value for money. One of the first things we did was to open everything up and make it all transparent so the people of Orange Walk could have an input in the work of the Council and see how their money was used. Our electorate deserves no less than the responsible and equitable allocation of their monies.
GOB Railroads Senate Committee Selection Process
At last week Friday’s Senate meeting, the Barrow Government ignored the will of the people who were calling for a completely independent Senate Committee to investigate the corruption exposed at the Immigration Department. Their 6 Senators predictably threw their support behind the Government-friendly motion which was tabled at the meeting by Church Senator Ashley Rocke. Once again, the Church Senator finds himself being accused of betraying his church constituents and the Belizean public. By his actions, he opened the door for the Government to get 2 of its Senators on that committee to inquire into wrongdoing by their own UDP colleagues. The immediate outcome of the meeting is that a Senate probe which was being demanded is now closer to becoming a reality. In getting there, the Church Senator recommended that the Government should get 2 Representatives on the Committee. Every other organization represented in the Senate is only allowed to have one member.
A SHARED RESPONSIBILITY
John Briceño, PUP Leader: We are grateful for the opportunity to share our initial plans on how we intend to govern our nation. We in the PUP know that through our struggle was born a peaceful revolution. Through our work to build this nation, our struggle has been constructive and progressive at its core. The Father of our Nation, the Right Hon. George Price bequeathed to us this spirit and understanding that together, through hard work and the guidance of our Creator, we can fulfill our aspirations. We in the PUP will always believe that our progressive revolution seeks to uplift our people – be it from the indignity of colonialism to any other form of injustice. We believe that our nation’s development hinges upon our collective responsibility to move Belizeans from poverty to prosperity. This is why we center our efforts and beliefs in Social Justice.
Barrow’s Incompetence – A US$67.3M Bukut
Prime Minister Dean Barrow has failed to deliver on his promise that the people of Belize will get 60% of that half a billion-dollar settlement that he negotiated with Lord Michael Ashcroft. Because he signed a badly drafted contract, about 50 million dollars that should have belonged to Belizeans is locked away.
The Caribbean Court of Justice confirmed this on Thursday, September 29, when they handed down their judgment via teleconference. The Government, represented by Denys Barrow, failed to convince the judges of the apex court that they should bail out the Government of the contract they signed. They came to the Court with excuses that what was intended in the settlement deed was that the entire Accommodation Agreement portion of the award by the tribunal was supposed to be placed in a Trust for the benefit of the Belizean people. But the CCJ sent GOB packing with that invalid assumption.
“How did things come to this?” Cries D.O.B
“How did things come to this?” asked Prime Minister Rt. Hon. Dean O. Barrow in a 9-minute televised address on September 25, 2016 in a clear attempt to one-up the Belize National Teachers’ Union (BNTU) who in a September 23rd letter, hinted at industrial action. But while the PM seemed to question how we got here, the BNTU was clear on its stance. So, the following Monday, September 26th, they publicly announced strike action for Monday October 3rd. During the full week that passed, things happened hard and fast. In yet another attempt to dissuade the teachers from striking, a hastily-called special sitting of the Senate was held for Church Senator, Pastor Ashley Rocke to table – for a second time – a motion for a Senate Inquiry into the findings of the special Auditor General’s report on Immigration and Nationality. If it was intended to appease the teachers, it had the opposite effect.
Special Needs Child Perishes in Lake I Fire
Tragedy touched the home of 42-year-old Carolyne Hamilton on Aloe Vera Street Extension in Belize City before 8:00 the night of Tuesday, October 4, 2016. Her 11-year-old special needs son, Aaron Gabourel, died in the blaze.
On the scene, we spoke with a distressed Nicole Hamilton, Carol’s sister who told us that at the time of the fire she was at a neighbour’s house after returning from the hospital where she had gone to see her partner who had recently been shot. She was called by her father who shared the bad news – “My pa tell me my sistah house geh ketch pon fire and my nephew supposedly geh bun up een deh. But I mi try be optimistic thinking that yes, di house bun but not di lee innocent baby.”
The Office of the Prime Minister has now become the Department of Defence & Evasive Manoeuvres. Mr. Barrow, through his own bombast and greed for power, is now forced to spend much of his time defending his actions and the actions of his Cabinet even as scandal after scandal reeking of corruption threaten to capsize the ship of state. The Master of the Game has been forced to utilize every trick and treat at his disposal to deflect and dodge REAL scrutiny and any accountability.
There is an underlying theme in the rallies being conducted by teachers as they maintain their bold and brave fight. They want real change, meaningful change for the benefit of the entire country, and ALL Belizeans. They are tired of the lies and tired of the rhetoric. They feel that they have been played by Dean Barrow, taken for fools by this man who used them to fight his political battles during those tumultuous times over a decade past.
If Dah Noh Soh
I deh tell yuh…disya govahment dah wah sissy govahment. Mein, unnu noh deh undastand weh pipple deh seh? Dih PM behave like he nack fuh he head. Pipple wah unnu fix up an fly right. But instead ah listen, unnu wah deh attack pipple like soh lee sissy. Dat dah lone fool. An dih mo unnu attack, the stronger dih teachers get, soh nack-head Dean betta get dih sense an man up quick, fast ah hurry. Yuh yer?
Word to this overweight scribe is that CEO in the Office of the Prime Minister Audrey Wallace is gone. Remember a few months back when the real deal kicked the big deal’s ass? Apparently as far back as that Ministers have been pressuring the PM to get rid of Audrey, the only CEO allowed to sit in Cabinet. A little bird sang to me that the Ministers are telling him it doesn’t look good for his CEO to be an out of the closet member of the LGBT community at a time when this is such a hot topic. I’m just saying that’s what I’m hearing. Word is that the Prime Minister has given in and is pushing Audrey to BTL to take over when the first son leaves with his megabucks severance package in hand. Oh boy why doesn’t Dean adopt me?
Breaking Belize News
CEO of Corozal Free Zone resigns
Raul Rosado Sr., the CEO of the Corozal Free Zone for the last 8 years and also a high ranking UDP member and financier in the north has resigned from his post. But what led to his sudden resignation? There are multiple reports including […]
Compassion in the midst of recession
The administration led by Prime Minister Rt. Hon. Dean Barrow since 2008 has excelled in many ways. The physical transformation of the nation’s infrastructure network is one that is unprecedented and will no doubt go down in history. But another important thing that distinguishes […]
Teacher’s strike to go into fifth day
There will be a fifth day of strikes by the Belize National Teachers’ Union, on Friday. At this hour, the ten branches of the Union are meeting countrywide and on Friday morning, the Council of Management will meet and thereafter communicate the decision on […]
Teenager arrested in San Pedro Town for drug trafficking
A 16-year-old boy has been arrested in San Pedro Town for drug trafficking. According to reports, this morning around 8, authorities stopped and searched a teenager on Sea Star Street in San Pedro Town who at the time had a small cartoon box in […]
NEMO hands over houses to Hurricane Earl victims
The Minister of State for National Emergency Management, Hon. Edmond Castro and NEMO National Coordinator, Colonel Shelton DeFour were in Rural Belize District yesterday, October 5, 2016 officially handing over houses to victims of Hurricane Earl whose homes had been damaged beyond repair, according to […]
The Great Belize Debate…Island or Mainland?
Today’s blog is a guest post by Lessons in Belize blog by Pepper Carpenter. She is documenting her journey and sharing the valuable lessons as she travels to and lives in different districts of Belize.
After visiting the island of Ambergris Caye in 2013, Pepper was hooked! Returning several times to explore the many diverse areas of this beautiful country, from Corozal on the northern border, San Ignacio in the Cayo district to Placencia in the south and the beautiful islands of Ambergris Caye and Caye Caulker, it came down to two choices.
I spent months looking at options in Belize. Placencia continued coming up in articles, real estate listings and travel blogs as a peaceful, quaint village on the mainland coast. I had not ventured to this southernmost region of the country, but felt it was worth a short trip after reading about the beauty of the beaches and uniqueness of this small fishing village. After the first visit, I have to say, I loved it! Yes, I loved Caye Caulker….but a little too slow. Yes, I loved San Pedro….but a little too crowded and fast. For me, I’ve found Placencia to be “just right”. It’s apparent the core values and kindness of the Belizean people are what makes this little country so appealing, regardless of which region you choose.
Creating a GREAT Future for our Children
We all know that the future is for our children, and in order to prepare them to venture forth, we need to nurture them from a young age. That’s the thought between the GREAT (Gang Resistance Education and Training) Program which aims to improve the lives of our children by guiding them along the right path. The GREAT Program targets children in the upper primary and high school levels and has 13 sessions delivered in the classroom once per week by a trained police officer. The Youth and Community Transformation Project’s objective is to reduce vulnerability of children and youth to crime and gang membership in Belize. This is being achieved by providing services to enhance literacy, adaptive life skills and expressive arts and sports skills, support conflict mediation and improve inter-linkages and the sharing of best practices among participating agencies working within these communities. The project is being financed by the Government of Belize through a loan facility from the Caribbean Development Bank.
Belize Weather: What to Expect
The weather in Belize is generally warm; our near-the-equator setting pretty much guarantees sunlight and blue skies throughout most of the calendar year. That said, Mother nature is still unpredictable and travelers may sometimes find themselves staring up at angry gray nimbus clouds, or no clouds at all.
If you’re wondering what the skies are like here, allow us to give you the run down on Belize Weather, what to expect, and when!
Belize is nestled in the Central American Jungle, right at the edge of the Caribbean Sea, just south of the Tropic of Cancer (totally not what it sounds like). The tropic of cancer is the northernmost point at which the sun may appear directly over Earth on the northern (summer) solstice. Residing within that range allows Belize to see warm, sunny, summer-like days long after other places have begun to chill over.
One Of The Most Affordable Options For Retirement In The Caribbean
I am a big fan of little Belize. I’ve been recommending Ambergris Caye, Belize’s Caribbean face, for years and, more recently, the country’s Cayo District for its back-to-basics self-resilient lifestyle.
Another part of this country is worth a look, too. Northern Belize is a remote region of tropical rivers, hardwood forests, traditional farms, sleepy rural villages, and breezy Caribbean seashores. This is a refreshingly off-the-radar place where residents embrace a simple, friendly, by-the-sea lifestyle.
It is also the best value destination in Belize and one of the most affordable options for retirement in the Caribbean.
Northern Belize is an area of about 2,500 square miles and the point where the Caribbean and Central America meet. As that geographic juxtaposition suggests, the population is diverse, and it is becoming more so as North American retirees are beginning to recognize what this overlooked part of Belize has to offer and settling here in growing numbers.
Thanksgiving in Belize isn’t that different…
Since Thanksgiving is an American and Canadian holiday, you may believe that it is not celebrated in Belize. However, yes, Belize does celebrate Thanksgiving, and similar to the US, it is in November.
As for why Belize celebrates Thanksgiving, I am not certain if it is due to the influence of American television or religion, but I believe it may be the latter. I say this because as a kid I remember having to go to church on Thanksgiving Sunday, and it was a big deal. Interestingly, everyone gave special offerings on this day, as a form to show God that we were grateful for our blessings throughout the year – kids would take a small basket of fruit, and adults would take homemade baked goods. At the end of the sermon, the items would be sold back to the congregation. Lol
The church sermon would end at noon and we would go home to enjoy a delicious Thanksgiving meal, which was usually a whole roasted chicken with stuffing and rice and beans with potato salad, since my mom thought turkey was too dry.
Anyway, I hope you enjoyed my vignette.
The National Symbols of Belize
A national symbol is any visual, verbal or iconic representation that serves to unite the people of a nation, while proudly portraying the country’s values and history. Each country has at least one symbol to celebrate and inspire patriotism and nationalism, Belize is no exception.
A charming, sub-tropical country, Belize possesses 5 unique national symbols. Selected by a bipartisan committee, these symbols are easily recognizable and respected among locals and those familiar with the country. We’ve compiled these 5 “National Symbols” with information on each, so feel free to learn and enjoy!
San Ignacio Resort Hotel
It’s not often you find a luxury hotel with an on-site iguana conservation project, but that’s what you get at the 26-room San Ignacio Resort Hotel. Family-run since 1976, it’s set in 17 acres of Belizean rainforest and is within walking distance to lively San Ignacio town. Dubbed the ‘the only jungle in town’, the hillside location on the Macal River in Belize’s Cayo District gives this hotel an out-of-the-way feel. although it’s only a 10-minute walk to the restaurants, bars and shops of San Ignacio, and there’s a casino next door. The Mayan site Cahal Pech is close by, and it’s a 30-minute drive to the temples of Xunantunich and 40 minutes to Actun Tunichil Muknal (ATM) caves. Many guests cross the border to Guatemala to visit Tikal’s Mayan citadel.
Built by Escander and Paulita Bedran in 1976, this relaxed hotel is now run, in varying capacities, by their four daughters. The bright, airy lobby with its whirring fans is decorated with local artwork, and there’s an inviting lobby bar. Best of all is the outdoor patio overlooking the pool and rainforest; you might even spot an iguana over cocktails or dinner. It’s not ground-breaking design, but it’s classy, comfortable and colourful.
DYS Rep Speaks Out Against G.O.B.
The teachers were certainly fired up at this morning’s Belize City rally; and so was Shawn Saldano. If his name sounds familiar, it is because you probably know him from the music track “I am Belize,” or as public relations representative for the Department of Youth Services, which is a Government department. But Saldano did not let that stop him from speaking up today. Shawn Saldano, Youth Representative “Of course, some may want to label me now, but I am here to tell you teachers that there is no doubt in my mind that you get my utmost respect and regards. Now the purpose for the strike action—be it the three percent or be it the call for good governance—I continue to hear the words the lack of wisdom, competence and capability. But we must really ask ourselves, who taught you the content that you have and are able to exemplify today. Isn’t it the same educators?
Caribbean Tourism: The value of emerging markets
The value of emerging markets was discussed at a recent CTO SOTIC event held in Barbados. The Caribbean region harbors a wealth of opportunities for economic development. Being beautiful is both a blessing and a curse. Possessing some of the best beaches in the world, surrounded by the incredible Caribbean Sea, endless days of brilliant sunshine, and yet everything is not perfect in this region of sand, surf, and sun. While the individual nations rely heavily on the tourist for a positive and consistent revenue stream, the industry is very fickle and competition increases daily.
In addition, the industry is subject to the whims of consumers who are easily bored, heavily marketed for their discretionary income decisions, easily deceived by what is instantly “hot,” and a moving target that is difficult (if not impossible) to corral.
Voting USA: Will my #Vote2016 be counted?
Election officials count every valid vote received by the state deadline! Register to vote, request an absentee ballot or check the status of your ballot. Select your State or territory of residence to get started.
World’s first ocean trash recon mission is complete – and the results are way worse than we thought
The Ocean Cleanup just completed its first aerial reconnaissance scan of the Great Pacific Garbage Patch to assess how serious the problem of ocean plastic has become - and the results are worse than anyone expected. At a press conference in Mountain View, California, teenage inventor, CEO and founder Boyan Slat announced that the organization spotted over 1000 large pieces of plastic debris in just 2 hours.
Panoramic video dive dive shrine belize 360 VR, 3.5min.
KayaKing in PLacencia , BeLize, 13min. First time kayaking. I had fun. At the hotel in PLacencia, Belize ... Good for the upper body and good cardio. I give kayakers respect..
Tubing in Belize city, 2.5min.
EnviroConnect Belize Competition (Season 1, Episode 5) HD, 27min.
Koops Sheet Metal, Spanish Lookout, Belize, 1min. As seen on Belize Technology Report. Hosted by Steve ODell. Produced by Steve ODell. Technical Commentary by Cadet Henderson.
Horizon Fabricate seamless guttering, Spanish Lookout, Belize, 5.5min. As seen on Belize Technology Report. Hosted by Steve ODell. Produced by Steve ODell. Technical Commentary by Cadet Henderson
OW BNTU motorcade: a snippet, 4min.
Teachers out in full force at the BNTU's rally in Orange Walk Town!, 3min.
BNTU peaceful rally in Punta Gorda, 15sec.
Message to teachers from Ms. Maria Zabaneh of Roman Catholic Diocese of Belize and Belmopan, 5min.
Teachers in Belize City are off. The rally will be at BTL Park, 2.5min.
Camille Cutkelvin N.P.(Prod. By Jupiter & J.Million), min. Here's a hot new track coming from Camille Cutkelvin Aka "Cee Cee"
N.P. ***Disclaimer: Explicit language***
Scuba Diving in Belize, 1min.
The Belize Zoo, 1min.
Birdwatching in Belize, 1min.
Belize River Kayaking, 1min.
Jaguar Preserve River, 1min.
Fishing in Belize, 1min.
Belize Barrier Reef Snorkeling, 1min.
Horseback Riding in Belize, 1min.
Belize Zip Line Adventure, 1min.
Xunantunich & Cahal Pech Mayan Ruins in Belize, 1min.
Belize Cave Tubing & Inland Blue Hole, 1min.
Snorkeling at Shark Ray Alley Belize Sept '16, 3.5min. Swimming with all of the sharks, rays, fish and marine life at Shark Ray Alley off Ambergris Caye Belize in early Sept 2016.
Belize Magnificent Mayan Tours, 10min. Belize Magnificent Maya Tours derived from the natural wonders of Belize. Dating far back in the era of the Maya civilization which includes the Ancient Maya ruins and sacred underworld caves.
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