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4/11/2016 to 4/20/2016
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April 20, 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

Life’s a Beach in Belize
Ahh, the beach…it calls to you daily – teasing and tempting with the sound of waves crashing ashore…shimmering shades of blue and green waters warm enough to lounge in for hours (SPF please), trade winds blowing, perhaps the simple addition of a refreshing beverage or two, a good book or trashy novel…hey, even a hammock between two coconut trees or at the end of a rickety wooden dock. However, Belize’s shorelines are different from the postcard visuals most visitors expect. Ambergris Caye doesn’t have a typical ‘beach’ scene with rows of white sand edging blue waters as far as the eye can see. There are some spots like that, but our waters are home to turtle grass, where fish and rays can play close to shore. Our Barrier Reef protects us from large crashing waves, so docks line our shores where you can jump in and play with the wild marine life.

Ambergris Today

New Garbage Compactor Added to San Pedro Sanitary Fleet
Growing pains of booming tourism industry on San Pedro, Ambergris Caye, Belize - As the development continues to increases on the island, so does the need for more infrastructure and yes, more vehicles to meet the demands of services provided. The sanitation department of the island is one feeling the pressure with the growing amounts of garbage being produced. To meet these demands of garbage collection, the San Pedro Town Council has acquired four garbage compactors, one of which was delivered to the island today, April 19, 2016. San Pedro Mayor Danny Guerrero and Deputy Mayor Gary Greif were on hand at the unveiling and indicated that the service vehicle will be put to use immediately.

San Pedro High School Talking Business
by Madison Pearl. Leave it to my parents to get me to go to school even on the weekend! I was not excited to go to the San Pedro High School’s Business Fair on my day off at all, but as soon as I got there I realized it wasn’t such a bad idea. I’m going to high school in a few years and now I’m really looking forward to it! These kids had real business plans and they were so creative. Models of their buildings, flat screen displays, samples of their food, even mascots and I was in the middle of all of it! I totally took a selfie with a little monkey dude! The seniors and juniors at the San Pedro High School had to present business plans to the public and judges. Some of them went as far as making jingles and commercials for their businesses. They opened Facebook pages and everything! We walked around the booths and got the kids to explain their plans to us and we could tell they put a lot of work into their projects.

Misc Belizean Sourcesmzz

SBDC Workshop: Basics of Labour Law
April 21st, 2016. Time: 1pm - 4pm. PRICE: FREE. Location: BTEC Building, ITVet Compound, Freetown Road. Belize City, Belize. This informational session on Labour Law will cover various acts under Labour Legislation which includes: Chapter 287- SHOPS ACT Chapter 297- LABOUR ACT (including Amendment #3 of 2011) Chapter 298 - SETTLEMENT OF DISPUTES IN ESSENTIAL SERVICES ACT Chapter 299 - TRADE DISPUTES (ARBITRATION AND INQUIRY) ACT Chapter 304 - TRADE UNIONS AND EMPLOYERS' ORGANIZATIONS (REGISTRATION, RECOGNITION AND STATUS) ACT The Labour Department's mandate, among many others, is enforcement and compliance with these legislation's. This will all be related to Belize's international obligations as a member of the International Labour Organization (ILO). Additionally, the session will provide an overview of as it relates to the rights and responsibilities of employers and employees.

Drones banned within the boundaries of ALL Archaeological Reserves
The Institute of Archaeology, NICH would like to advise all Tour Operators, Tour Guides and the General Public that to ensure the safety and security of all visitors, the use of DRONES IS STRICTLY PROHIBITED within the boundaries of ALL Archaeological Reserves.

Chaa Creek Eco Kids Camp 2016
Chaa Creek is accepting essays for their 2016 Eco Kids Summer Camp. If you know any kids that are interested, let them know that all they have to do is write a 300 word essay about why they want to be an Eco Kid. "It's almost time for our Eco-Kids summer camp 2016! Kids between 9 & 12 submit your entries to social@chaacreek.com!"

And so ends another great Birdathon, last of three
If you call yourself a Belizean birder, then Dawson's Creek and Lamanai Savannahs should be on your eBird list for this year. These are places of sublime beauty, where birding is explained by a second definition. Dawnson's Creek just before dawn. There is something about how light starts spreading over the sky and how silhouettes play with shadows of color over the vast landscape, that attracts your attention. Lamanai Savannahs at dawn.

Book launch of Ms. Kesha Peyrefitte's book
Last Thursday Embassy staff had the opportunity to attend the book launch of Ms. Kesha Peyrefitte's book titled, "What If..I Love Her and Other Stories" at the National Heritage Library. Ms. Peyrefitte's book of short stories is the first book published by a Belizean this year in Belize. Congratulations and keep up the good work. Developing and promoting literary arts is important!

Wild Flower Fashion Show
The Imagine Greater Modelling Agency is having their Wild Flower Fashion Show this Saturday at Cahal Pech. It starts at 7:00pm, and the after party will be at Thirsty Thursdays. "IGMA Fashion Show event is about displaying a collections of newly designed clothing, and showcasing Belizean Models at their best. Promoting Health, beauty and Wild Flowers."

U.S. Citizen Town Hall Meeting- Cayo
Friday, May 20 at 10:30 AM - 12:30 PM. The U.S. Embassy will be hosting a Town Hall Meeting for American Citizens on May 20th in Cayo at the The Aguada Hotel, Santa Elena. If you are an American Citizen residing in Belize in this area please join us.

Channel 7

Zika: CDC Posts Travel Advisory For Belize
Since November of last year, we have been reporting extensively on the Zika virus. As we told you, the presence of Zika has been confirmed in all neighboring countries, but not in Belize. Well, all that has changed because the Centers for Disease Control sent out a Zika travel notice today - putting Belize on the map of countries reporting active Zika mosquito transmission. It's troubling news for Belize, but the Ministry of Health isn't taking the CDC's word for it. Health CEO Ramon Figueroa told us that they knew this travel advisory would be released but that they will await the test results from CARPHA before they confirm that there are Zika cases in Belize. Figueroa says they remain vigilant and have sent 5 more samples to CARPHA this week. Now, Zika isn't as severe as, say…dengue. The symptoms are fever, rash, joint pain and red eyes, and, in most cases, the illness is mild with symptoms lasting less than a week.

No Charge Yet For Man Who Cops Say Shot "Shiney"
No one has been charged as yet for Gerald "Shiney" Tillett's murder. The alleged killer is still hospitalized in a stable condition and is under heavy police guard. As we told you, on Saturday night the reputed leader of the George Street Gang was hanging out at the Wadani Shed in Dangriga along with the owner David Rodriguez and another friend Carlos Sharp. They were playing a round of 'Dice' when a gunman opened fire under the shed. Tillet was shot to the head while Rodriguez and Sharp were both shot to the chest. That is when another one of Tillett's friends shot the gunman in the back twice - with a licensed firearm.

SSG Boss Says: Not Involved In Shiney Murder
Now as we told you Tillett's murder in Dangriga might be related to some gang rivalry in Belize City. That's because Tillett is the reputed George Street Gang leader and police say his alleged shooter is associated with the Southside Gangsters - both gangs are known rivals. Here's how the commander of the GSU put it yesterday:... Supt. Mark Flowers, Commander, GSU: "We know that he is a Dangriga resident who have lived in Belize City and who is also closely associated, that is a suspected shooter, with the South Side gang." And while that narrative seems straightforward, the man said to be the leader of the Southside Gangsters Wababa Norales called 7News today and told us the cops have it all wrong. Norales told our news Director Jules Vasquez that while he does have, quote, "controllance of Griga" end quote, he was in the city at the park at the time of the murder, and was as surprised as anyone else to hear about it. He says he doesn't know who is behind the murder - but acknowledged that Tillett has many enemies. He also said that while the Southside Gangsters have an ongoing rivalry with George Street so do many other gangs.

Grijlava Attorney Says Noh Mul Appeal Likely
On Thursday - UDP Politician Denny Grijalva, his wife Emelda and project manager Javier Nunez will go before the Chief Magistrate in Belize City to be sentenced. Nunes has been found guilty of, causing the removal of earth from an ancient monument without a permit, while Grijalva and his wife are guilty of "removing earth from an ancient monument...and wilful damaging on an ancient monument." The monument in question is Noh Mul and Chief Magistrate Anne Marie Smith found, quote, "The damage to the mound is irreversible as the excavation has resulted in only the core being left.... the Crown..proved all elements of the offences beyond a reasonable doubt and therefore finds the defendants guilty of all charges." And while the defence for Gijlava's team argues that the equipment found at the site was commandeered by villagers and used without their consent, the Chief Magistrate found, quote, "if the Maya site was destroyed by the agents of the defendants, can the defendant's be held liable? The Court is of the view that the company and the directors i.e. Mr Denny Grijalva, Ms Emelda Grijalva and the project manager Mr Javier Nunez are to be held liable and accountable for the acts of its servants...for the criminal acts of those who illegally excavated Noh Mul. They are to be held accountable."

Guatemala Rejects Sarstoon Peace Protocol
Guatemala has rejected Belize's proposals for keeping the peace on the Sarstoon. As we reported, on Friday, April 8, talks were held at the OAS Adjacency Zone office, and Belize put forward an 11-point draft proposal for a protocol on the Sarstoon River. The Guatemalan's counter-proposal amounts to a rejection of the protocol. They want all Belizean vessels to check in with them before proceeding down the Sarstoon. It's a major disappointment for Belize, and just last week when Foreign Minister Wilfred Elrington revealed the draft proposal, he told us that was optimistic that it would be well received on the other side of the border: Daniel Ortiz: "Based on your discussions with the Guatemalan representatives, are you gentlemen hopeful that this modus Vivendi as proposed will meet its success?"

Lozano Blames 7News For House Shot Up
Last night, we told you about gunmen who shot up the Lozano home on Marage Road in Ladyville. That happened in the early morning hours of Saturday, and the family worried that the assailants might return for another attempt, since no one was injured during the weekend. Today, Cynthia Lozano sat down with 7News and she described what happened that night after she had only just gone to bed: "I got home at ten to two that Sunday morning. I went to bed about 2:45-2:50 thereabout, and was awaken by loud kicks at my door. Right after the kicks, my husband got up to find out what the noise was about. Immediately we heard three gun shots, he came out the door and I followed behind. I looked for my kids and saw they were okay. By that time they had knocked all the lights off. I called my son who wasn't at home, because my other boy thought he came home and it was him outside. He said 'mom I'm still in Cayo'. I then called the police, they asked me a few questions, I told them 'I'm not opening my door until you guys get here', of which they did. What transpired there, I really and truly don't know, like I told you, I was awaken from my sleep. I honestly believe they would have executed the job that they came to do and everyone in my home would have been dead, because you cannot leave someone to tell the tale. That was my worst fear that night."

Felix Brothers Will Stand Trial For Mark Gentle's Murder
Today several charges were dropped against the Felix brothers - Maurice and Emory. They were both charged for shooting 27 year old Mark Gentle and 34 year old Calvin Cumberbatch on May 25th, 2015. Both Gentle and Cumberbatch were sitting on a step in front of their house that Monday night when a vehicle pulled up and 2 men let off a barrage of gunfire, and sped off. Cumberbatch was treated and released for his injuries but Mark Gentle, known as Mark Vernon died a week after on June 8th 2015. Now in terms of the court case against the Felix brothers - they were initially charged with 2 counts of attempted murder, 2 counts of dangerous harm, and 1 count of use of deadly means of harm. But today at the Preliminary Inquiry, those charges were dropped in relation to the shooting of Calvin Cumberbatch.

Court Says Cruise Visitor's Cannabis Cool
31 year-old American Cruise Tourist Ashley Williams received a stroke of judicial generosity when she was arraigned today before Magistrate Carlon Mendoza. She was caught with a very small quantity of marijuana. Williams, a resident of Virginia was taken to court today on a single count of possession of a controlled drug. When the charge was read to her, she told the court that she came on today's cruise ship from Virginia, and that she bought 1.8 grams of cannabis - less than one tenth of an ounce - in Belize City, not knowing that it is still illegal in this country. After consideration, Magistrate Mendoza dismissed the charge, and cautioned Williams that she now knows it to be illegal, and that she must not be arrested for being in possession of the drug in Belize again. Magistrate Mendoza commented to court reporters that he reason he dismissed the charge without any sanctions was that the cannabis was sold openly to her, against her knowledge of its illegality. He added that police should start to crack down on persons who are selling drugs.

Dr. Z Links Up With BPP
The yellow and green political camp have gotten the technical expertise of one very prominent Belizean educator and economist. He is Dr. Louis Zabaneh whose official membership in the independent party was heralded in a press release today. He has been named the, quote, "Sustainable Human Development Advisor to the Executive.

Sales Rep Charged For Sex With Minor
A man is spending his first night in prison today after he was accused of having sex with a 13 year old girl. The minor reported to police that 28 year old Sales Representative Shane Gentle had sex with her twice on March 24th . A medical examination on the child confirmed that she had been carnally known. Today the Belize City resident of Tibuce Street appeared in court without an attorney. In court he was read two charges of unlawful sexual intercourse. No plea was taken and he was offered no bail, due to the nature of the offences. As a result he will wait out the remaining days until his next court session on remand at the Belize Central Prison. The case was adjourned until May 17th.

"Shiney" Always Shied Away From Spotlight
Today - as they did yesterday - the family of 36 year old Gerald "Shiney" Tillett declined an interview with 7News. They told us "you can say what you want." And indeed the public image of someone labeled as a gangster always looms much larger than the person's family life. Much of that image is informed by legend and public speculation. From a public perspective, for all his renown, Shiny never gravitated to the spotlight - in fact he shied away from it, and as far as we know, he only ever gave one interview to the media. We dug into our archives today to look at some of the few public appearances he made:... Tillett was the father of 10 children. His funeral will be held on Saturday at 10:30 at St. John's Cathedral, and he will be buried right at Lord's Ridge Cemetery.

Vision and Vice On Vacation
A Canadian Pop music duo calling themselves "Vice and Vision" are in Belize seeking inspiration on a musical tour of Belize. They stopped by our studio and spoke to us about the work they've been doing, and why they chose Belize in the first place. They plan to be in Belize at least for the next month or so. But before they go they hope to perform a show at the Prison. They told us more about the idea.

Fundraiser To Save Cleyon
There will be a BBQ and Pastry sale this Saturday for little Cleyon Marage. As we had told you, Cleyon urgently needs a $100,000 bone marrow transplant and his parents are trying to raise that money, but they need your help. So if you want to assist the family you can stop by the fundraiser this Saturday at 42 Cleghorn Street from 10 to 3 in the afternoon. 12 year old Cleyon was diagnosed with acute myeloid leukemia in 2014. He is receiving treatment in Merida.

Not Bashing Assad
Before we close tonight, we must make a clarification to a story which we aired last night. We told you that Assad Shoman, the Opposition Leader's representative in the Belize/Guatemala bilateral talks, is recommending a change to Belize's Maritime Areas Act. We reported that he thinks it prudent to change the law so that Belize claims its full 12 miles of territorial seas. We must specify that he was referring to the twelve miles of seas between the Sarstoon and the Ranguana Caye. Right now in the law's current state, Belize is only claiming 3 miles of its territorial waters as way to provide a framework for the negotiation of a definitive agreement on territorial differences with Guatemala. Now that these negotiations have failed, Shoman is recommending that the law be amended so that Belize can claim the other 9 miles of territorial seas that exists between the Sarstoon and the Ranguana.

Channel 5

O.A.S. Secretary-General Visits Belize
Secretary-General of the Organization of American States Luis Almagro arrived in Belize today as part of a scheduled two-day visit to promote the culture of peace at the Adjacency Zone. [...]

Police Remain on High Alert Following Murder of GSG Boss
Police are being deployed in many neighborhoods on the south side of Belize City, as they brace up for any eventuality, following the murder of Gerald “Shiny” Tillett in Dangriga [...]

Cops Say Closing Businesses Had Nothing to Do With Murder
Following the murders of Gerald Shiny Tillett and Kadeem Castillo, at least two clubs—Dino’s Night Club and Thirsty Thursday—were reportedly closed down just after midnight on Saturday. Several businesses in [...]

Coastguard Officer Accidentally Shoots Himself
A Coast Guard Petty Officer Class Three is tonight recovering at the K.H.M.H. after he was injured at the Coast Guard’s Forward Operating Base in Consejo. From a very preliminary [...]

Felix Brothers Will Stand Trial for Murder
The Felix brothers, Maurice and Emory, will have to stand trial for the murder of Mark Gentle and attempted murder of Pamela Cumberbatch at the June session of the Supreme [...]

Are You Surprised by Guatemala’s Rejection of the Sarstoon Proposals?
And tonight question is: Are you surprised by Guatemala’s rejection of the Sarstoon proposals? Send your comments and responses using your SMART phones to 8686 or post your vote on our [...]

CDC Confirms Zika in Belize
The Center for Disease Control in the U.S. has confirmed that there is zika in Belize. The Ministry of Health, however, has not confirmed that report because it says it [...]

Denny Grijalva Guilty of Razing Ancient Mayan Site
After three years of constant adjournments and delays, U.D.P. Orange Walk Central political caretaker Denny Grijalva was found guilty, along with his wife Emelda Grijalva and Project manager Javier Nunez. [...]

Punishment May Not Fit the Crime
The next step will be mitigation pleas followed by sentencing. But here’s the thing. Under the NICH Act, Grijalva could face fines of up to ten thousand dollars. Banner says [...]

Alrick Smith Case for Malicious Prosecution in Court
It was big news in July 2014 when an entire family, seven persons from the Lake Independence area, was locked down after a firearm was found in the home. It [...]

Arlie Petters Appointed Trinity Dean of Academic Affairs
Belizean born mathematical physicist Doctor Arlie Petters has been appointed to dean of academic affairs and associate vice provost for undergraduate education at Trinity College in North Carolina, U.S.A.  Doctor [...]

Taiwanese Technical Team Complete Helicopter Assembly
After just about two weeks in Belize, a seventeen member team from the Republic of China on Taiwan – comprising engineers, technicians, mechanics and pilots – has completed the assembly [...]

Police Investigate Accident in the City
Up to news time, statements were being recorded by the police on an accident that occurred just before three this afternoon in Belize City. A motorcyclist was knocked down at [...]

Santorino Sotz Says Police Are Corrupt
Police Constables Hallet King and Leonard Nunez were the two officers charged for the vicious killing of eighteen year old Baptist High School student Hilberto Sotz inside the police station [...]

Taste of Belize 2016 Will Be Bigger and Better
This year, the Belize Tourism Board will be bringing back the Taste of Belize, a competitive culinary show. Chefs, bakers and bartenders from across the country will face off in [...]

Jimmy Morales Comments for Donald Trump
To close the news tonight, we report on a recent statement made by Guatemalan President Jimmy Morales. Morales was interviewed by a New York Times reporter and was asked specifically [...]

CTV3

Kim Simplis Barrow Visits Schools In The North
Yesterday Special Envoy for Families and Children Kim Simplis Barrow, the founder of the Lifeline foundation, visited three schools in the Corozal District including the Libertad Seventh Day Adventist School whose faculty and staff was more than ready to receive her. Kim Simplis Barrrow – Founder of Lifeline Foundation: “Life-Line black and white gala is coming up and normally we look at one of our districts and we focus on the schools there and this year around is give your heart here at Corozal, we at Life Line always want to go to the schools and so our own inspection so that is what we did, we did three schools today; we did Libertad, San Narciso and Caledonia, the plan for Libertad is really and we looking at a, for this school is looking at a Computer Lab, which is very much needed so it is a construction of a physical computer lab and the donation of computers and we were also looking at the roof from the first building that was established here and the roof is bat infested and so we will be looking to see if we could make enough money to replace the roof.”

NTV Heads Out to Garbutt Falls
Saturday April 30th marks the 157th anniversary of the 1859 Treaty between the governments of the UK and the republic of Guatemala which recognized the border between Belize and Guatemala, and as a tribute to the historic event the Northern Territorial Volunteers (NTV) have organized a day trip to the Garbutt's Fall marker in Western Belize, which separates Benque Viejo Town from Guatemala's Melchor De Menchos. Yesterday during our morning show, Despierta Belice, we spoke to two members of the NTV who told us why it is very important for Belizeans to make an effort to attend this trip Northern Territorial Volunteers: “When we commemorate that date so we are planning this trip to go there and show people our monument so that is the main reason, to educate them of the date that the treaty was signed and to visit our monument and to see what our monument is because as far as we understand the OAS is in charge to keep this monument still and the last trip we went there the monument was in a deplorable condition; a lot of garbage and it was very, very dirty and so we want to sensitize the people and take them there and show them this is what we have so we are inviting the public at large to come out on this trip it is a very educational trip.”

Another Hike On Fuel Prices
If you visited the pumps over the weekend you might have noticed that once again there were changes in the cost of domestic fuel. The changes, which occurred on Friday, saw the cost per gallon of premium gasoline increasing by two cents, going from nine dollars and six cents to nine dollars and eight cents while the cost per gallon of diesel increased from seven dollars and sixty four cents to seven dollars and eighty seven cents, a difference of twenty-three cents. But there is some good news for consumers of regular gasoline, as it saw a slight decrease of eleven cents, reducing from nine dollars and six cents to eight dollars and ninety five cents. The last time we reported on changes in fuel prices was April 8th 2016.

Guatemala Rejects Belize's Proposal
Many of you may remember that on Friday of last week a draft proposal was presented to Guatemala by a Belizean delegation during a bilateral meeting that took place at the OAS office at the adjacency zone in Benque Viejo. After the draft proposal was presented, the Guatemalan delegation asked for a one week grace period to consider the proposal and deliver a response. That week is up and although GOB has not officially spoken on the issue, information is that Guatemala has rejected the 11 proposals without offering an alternative. For context, we revisit Minister of Foreign Affairs, Wilfred Elrignton’s presentation on the draft proposals. Hon. Wilfred Elrington- Minister Foreign Affairs “The channels of the Sarstoon River shall continue to be freely navigable by vessels and boats of each of the two countries without any interference or trailing by the other. The second…whenever any vessels of any one of the parties approaches the base of the other party or any other vessel, it shall reduce its speed as a token of respect and friendship and to avoid injury or damage to persons or property.”

Grijalva Inclined To Appeal Guilty Verdict
As we mentioned in yesterday’s newscast, a decision was handed down in the case against Denny Grijalva, his wife Maria who were representing De mar’s Stone Company and Javier Nunez, the foreman of the company who were charged with willfully damaging an ancient monument, removing earth from an ancient monument and causing destruction of an ancient monument respectively back in June of 2013. At that time Grijalva's company was accused of using the material of the historical Mayan Site, Noh Mul fix roads in the Orange Walk North constituency. All three individuals were found guilty of the charges at the Corozal Magistrates Court by Chief Magistrate Anne Marie Smith.Attorney for the Grijalva’s and Nunez, Brian Neal, spoke today with our colleagues at Seven News and according to him, the decision taken by the court came as quite a surprise and the next step to be taken by his clients will more than likely be to appeal the decision as he believes the wrong persons were accused of destroying the Maya Site.

NTV Educates The Youths On Flag Protocols
For the past few months the Northern Territorial Volunteers have been carrying out an educational campaign at different schools and organizations throughout the Orange Walk and Corozal Districts. The purpose of the campaign is to educate Belizeans about the proper flag protocols of Belize. According to leader of the NTV, Jeovannie De la Fuente and member David Espadas, although the response from Belizeans has been very poor so far, they are very optimistic. Northern Territorial Volunteers: “The response of Belizeans as a whole when it comes to these types of things unfortunately is very poor, you would be surprise that if you ask a standard six student what the red signifies on our flag they don’t know, they don’t know that that is unity, they don’t know how the red got there, the student don’t know what the fifty leaves mean in our flag and that is the aim we are teaching these people we have held several teaching sessions with adults and they ask what this means and yes what the teachers are fighting for that we need to teach our student the flag protocol.”

NTV Describes Draft Proposals As Band Aid Solutions
Yesterday representatives of the Northern Territorial Volunteers were guest on the Despierta Belice morning show. President of NTV Geovanni De La Fuente and member David Espadas visited the show to promote the groups trip to Garbutt Falls which we’ll tell you about in a few. During yesterday’s conversation NTV representatives were asked to give their input on the 11 proposals presented to Guatemala by Belize to defuse confrontation at the Sarstoon. While we know now that Guatemala has rejected those proposals De La Fuente and Espadas are of the opinion that the 11-point draft proposal for a peace protocol in the Sarstoon is just a Band-Aid solution to a problem that requires real action.

LOVE FM

Guatemala Rejects Belize’s Proposals
On Wednesday, April 13, Belize’s Foreign Minister Wilfred Sedi Elrington in the company of former Foreign Minister, Assad Shoman addressed the media in a press briefing at the NEMO’s Conference Room in Belmopan where a list of protocols presented to Guatemalan counterparts were shared. In that brief, Elrington says that they had given the Guatemalans […]

Grijalva Guilty of Destroying Ancient Monument
There was public outcry at the local and international level when it was discovered that a large portion of the Noh Mul Mayan Temple was destroyed. The marl from the temple was used to pave roads in a nearby village. Operation ceased when National Institute of Culture and History (NICH) officials learnt of what was […]

Belize Sends Additional Samples to CARPHA; Awaiting Results on First Samples
Belize’s health officials have sent six more samples to the Caribbean Public Health Agency (CARPHA) in Port of Spain for ZIKA testing. Majority of those samples derived from the south and were taken during the epidemiological investigation launched in the southern and western part of Belize. Meanwhile, Belize’s health officials were expecting results from Port […]

Taiwan’s Ambassador Tests Helicopters in Belize’s Airspace
Two weeks ago, a seventeen member team from the Republic of China Taiwan arrived in Belize. The team comprised engineers, technicians, mechanics and two pilots. The team was dispatched by the Government of Taiwan to assemble the two UH-1H helicopters gifted to the Belize Defence Force. Shortly after its arrival, the team embarked on the […]

Another Change in Fuel Prices
Ten days ago we told you of a price change at the gas pumps that saw the increase of regular fuel and diesel by sixty two cents and twenty one cents, respectively. Last Friday, those prices were changed again which shows a lowering of regular fuel by eleven cents thus making it eight dollars and […]

Belize to Implement National Drivers Database
Taiwan’s Technical Mission in Belize has teamed up with the Central Information Technology Office (CITO) to bring an electronic system to Belize for driver and vehicle licenses as well as vehicle registration complemented by a web portal for information access. Technology experts from Taiwan were in Belize meeting with officials from the Transport Department conducting […]

Briceno Continues His Familiarization of 31 Divisions
This past weekend, the People’s United Party held a meeting at Maracas in Orange Walk Town to elect a Chairman for the Orange Walk South committee. That person will be replacing Jose Abelardo Mai since he is now the Deputy Leader North on the party’s national executive. During that meeting, Thea Garcia was elected. As […]

PUP and Shoman – A Strange Relationship
The People’s United Party had recently appointed its former Foreign Minister, Assad Shoman to sit on the Belize/Guatemala team along with the Foreign Affairs Minister, Wilfred Elrington. It is a strange relation to say the least, particularly since Shoman has stated clear that he is not a member or supporter of the blue and white […]

Dr Petters Appointed as Dean of Academic Affairs and Vice Provost at Duke University
Dr Arlie Petters is no stranger to Belizeans as he has been quite active in the education sector in Belize. His invaluable contributions and humble personality have not only been recognized in Belize but also in the United States where he spent much of his years; so much so that Dr Petters have been appointed […]

Guard Stabbed Whilst Foiling Robbery at Free Zone
Two nights ago a security guard employed at the Corozal Free Zone Security, was stabbed. Reports are that a robbery was in progress at an establishment when the security guard tried to intervene. All that is known to Love News is that there was a struggle between the security guard and the thieves. As a […]

Gang Leader Slain Under the Wadani Shed
Well known street figure, Gerald Shiney Tillett was gunned down on Saturday night in Dangriga. The incident unfolded at a popular hang out spot in that municipality. Correspondent Harry Arzu filed this report. HARRY ARZU REPORT “36-year-old, Gerald Tillett, leader of the George Street Gang in Belize City was shot and killed in Dangriga while […]

PlusTV

Gerald “Shiny” Tillett is dead; retaliatory shootings kill another in Belize City
Reputed George Street Gang Boss 36 year old Gerald “Shiney” Tillett is dead. He was killed by a single gunshot wound to the head. The shooting happened while he and two others were socializing at the popular gambling spot, Wadani Shed, on St. Vincent Street in Dangriga Saturday night. We hear from S...

Western Regional Hospital crawling with gang affiliates; armed security called in
As we told you, following the transportation of two of the shooting victims to the Western Regional hospital on Sunday, as well as the body of the notorious street figure, Gerald Tillet, to the Belmopan morgue, Hospital administration had to call in police assistance as several vehicles of Belize Ci...

Man stabbed in bar fight; dies
A man was killed on Caye Caulker as he tried to part a bar fight. On Sunday April 17, at about 8:00 p.m. a fight broke out at SIP & DIP Liquor Establishment located on Avenida Hicaco on Caye Caulker. Police say that Leon Gordon went to separate a fight between Austin Gabourel and Jeremy Rhaburn,...

Is Saturday night carnage in City linked to Shiney execution in Dangriga?
Police in Eastern Division (South) say they are still working to confirm whether the death of 22-year-old Kadeem Castillo on Saturday night, as well as two other shootings, are linked to the death of Gerald “Shiney” Tillett in Dangriga Town. Today Senior Superintendent Alden Dawson, deputy commander...

Belize City “not on lockdown”
The measures taken by Police on Saturday night in the wake of the murder of Gerald ‘Shiny’ Tillett seemed to amount to something of a “lockdown” of Belize City. Shops were shut by 9 at night and two nightclubs were closed down by midnight in spite of having extensions. But according to Senior Superi...

Was gang rivalry behind Shiney Tillett’s murder?
Who killed Gerald “Shiney” Tillett in Dangriga Town on Saturday night, and why? Police in both the Culture Capital and the Old Capital are seeking the answers to both questions tonight. Because Tillett was a well-known gang figure, the obvious place to start would be gang rivalry, whether internal o...

Biscayne man shot in chest at home
A 43 year old man was shot to the chest on Saturday night in Biscayne Village at his home at 26 3/4 miles Phillip Goldson Highway. Ladyville police filled us in on the details. Inspector Juanito Cocom, Officer Commanding Ladyville Police: David Richard Taylor, 43 year old, Belizean Laborer of Philip...

Amandala

George Street gang boss executed in Dangriga
The peace at the Wadani Recreational Center at the corner of Mangrove and St. Vincent Streets in Dangriga, was shattered at about 7:00 Saturday night as people scrambled for cover after gunfire erupted during a gin card game under a shed, leaving one man dead and two others injured. Witnesses say that a gunman went to the shed and shot a player identified as Gerald “Shiny” Tillett, 37, of George Street, Belize City, the reputed boss of the George Street gang. Tillett was shot in the back of the head, and as he slumped forward onto the table, the gunman fired some more shots, hitting two other men. One man was shot in the side of the abdomen and the other man was shot in the chest as they attempted to escape from the murderous gunfire.

Guilty of destroying ancient Maya site, Noh Mul!
When Noh Mul Pyramid, the ancient Maya site located in San Pablo, Orange Walk District, was bulldozed on May 13, 2013, by Dé Mars Stone Company to extract white marl, it made national and international headlines, and now, after almost three years, the criminal charges brought by the state have been heard and guilty verdicts have been read out in court. Dé Mars Stone Company is owned by the United Democratic Party’s (UDP) Orange Walk Central caretaker Denny Grijalva, and his wife Emelda Grijalva, who are listed as directors of the company and who were charged, along with Javier Nunez, the company’s project manager, and its excavator, Emil Cruz, for causing damage to the ancient Noh Mul Maya pyramid by removing the white marl for roadfill without a permit. Eight months after the trial commenced in the Corozal Magistrate’s Court, it came to an end today when Chief Magistrate Ann Marie Smith found that the Crown had proved its case against the four accused.

Kadeem Castillo, 19, executed on Madam Liz Crescent
Kadeem Castillo, 19, of Madam Liz Crescent; Venancio Carter, 27, of Partridge Street; and Justin Belgrave of East Canal were shot in three separate incidents in the city on Saturday night, April 16. Castillo was shot in the head and chest and died on the scene, while Venancio Carter was shot in the knee and elbow. Justin Belgrave, 37, was shot in the groin. Carter was treated and has since been released from the Karl Heusner Memorial Hospital (KHMH), while Belgrave has been admitted to ward at the KHMH in a serious condition. The first to be shot was Belgrave. Police said that at about 8:30 on Saturday night, Belgrave was standing in front of a Chinese store on Vernon Street when he heard the sound of gunshots, and he ran for cover.

BNTU launches “Stand Up for Belize”
The ages-old, expansionist Guatemalan claim Belize inherited with independence from Britain has been dominating the national scene for over a year due to several incidents in the Sarstoon River involving the Guatemalan Armed Forces’ violation of Belize’s territorial integrity, with its new claim to the entire Sarstoon River. It is against that backdrop and the talk of settling the dispute at the International Court of Justice (ICJ) that hundreds of teachers from all branches of the powerful Belize National Teachers Union (BNTU) gathered today in Benque Veijo Del Carmen to launch their “Stand Up for Belize” campaign, which will focus on the building of awareness of the Guatemalan claim.

Man stabbed to death in Caye Caulker
–A Caye Caulker man, Leon Gordon, 30, has died after being stabbed in the abdomen at about 8:15 last night while parting a fight between two men outside the SIP & DIP Restaurant on Avenida Hicaco in Caye Caulker. Another man, who was a friend of one of the men involved in the fight, reportedly stabbed Gordon in the abdomen with a knife, and the two combatants then escaped in the direction of the Split. Gordon was rushed to the Caye Caulker village clinic by his family, but he died shortly after due to the injuries he sustained.

5 possible ZIKA cases in the citrus belt
On Thursday, April 14, the World Health Organization (WHO) added Belize to the list of countries with local transmission of Zika, after a report by the US Centers for Disease Control (CDC) that an American woman had contracted Zika in Belize; however, Director of Health Services (DHS), Dr. Marvin Manzanero, told Amandala that the Ministry of Health has not yet signed on to confirm that status because it is still conducting its epidemiological investigations and awaiting the results of tests by the Caribbean Public Health Agency (CARPHA). Today, the US Centers for Disease Control (CDC) issued a “level 2 alert” travel notice for Belize, calling for “enhanced precautions” to avoid transmission through mosquito bites or sex. The CDC says that “Local transmission of Zika virus infection (Zika) has been reported.” It explained that, “Local transmission means that mosquitoes in the area have been infected with Zika virus, spreading it to people.”

Gene Myvett records first ever triple double
Belmopan Bandits clinched #2 seed with a win versus San Pedro Tiger Sharks: Belmopan Bandits, who are presently on a 7-game winning streak, hosted the two-time defending champions, San Pedro Tiger Sharks, at the UB gymnasium in Belmopan on Friday night. The winner of this game clinched the #2 seed and home court advantage in the semifinals. Belmopan Bandits controlled the tempo of the game, nursing an early 33-31 lead at intermission. The lead was extended to 53-47 at the end of third quarter, and Belmopan Bandits was able to seal the 70-65 victory. The top scorer for Belmopan Bandits (10-4) was Jarrel Velasquez, who had the game high with 24 pts, 6 assists, 6 rebs and 2 steals; while Nick Brown tallied 16 pts, 6 rebs and 3 assists. Kurt “Chengo” Burgess finished the night with 13 rebs, 9 pts and 3 assists. San Pedro Tiger Sharks (8-5) was led by Caleb Sutton who recorded 18 pts, 7 rebs, 3 steals and 2 dimes. Tyrone Edwards tallied 14 pts, 3 steals and 3 assists; and Gene Myvett finished the night, with 8 pts, 4 rebs, 3 assists and 3 steals.

Smart Mundialito 13 & Under Football
The 5th Annual Smart Mundialito 13 & under Football Tournament 2016, got under way on Saturday, April 16, with Week 1 games at the MCC Grounds, where 10 of the 11 participating teams saw action. In game 1, defending champion Brown Bombers and sub-champion Young Warriors played to a nil-nil stalemate. The NEBL playoffs will use a best-of-three format, with the higher seeded team having the home court advantage. Smart Belize Hurricanes (#1) and Dangriga Warriors (#4) split their season series, where both teams won at home. Smart Belize Hurricanes is in the playoffs for the first time, while Dangriga Warriors is returning for their second straight season as the #4 seed. Similarly, Belmopan Bandits (#2) and San Pedro Tiger Sharks (#3) won 1 game each, with both victories coming at home. For the third straight season, Belmopan Bandits and San Pedro Tiger Sharks have met in the semifinals. San Pedro has won the series in the two previous years, but this year Belmopan has home court advantage for the first time.

Editorial: Bill BRICS attacks Havana Assad
Following the conquests of 1898, the United States began to pursue a new kind of imperialism that generally avoided the bald-faced seizure of territory. Most scholars emphasize how this period was characterized by informal assertions of dominance exemplified by the Open Door policies in China. While the Open Door became an important template for the extension of U.S. power abroad, the era between 1898 and World War II also featured frequent (and largely underestimated) military interventions in Latin America and the accompanying basing of forces abroad. In this period, the United States intervened militarily in (and in some cases occupied) Mexico (1914, 1916-19), Guatemala (1920), El Salvador (1932), Honduras (1903, 1907, 1911, 1912, 1919, 1920, 1924, 1925), Nicaragua (1898, 1899, 1909-1910, occupied 1912-33), Costa Rica (naval presence 1921), the Dominican Republic (1903, 1904, 1914, occupied 1915-24), Haiti (1914, occupied 1915-34), and Cuba (occupied 1898-1902, 1906-9, 1912, 1917-22).The military occupations in particular depended on the establishment of local military bases and garrisons to station U.S. troops. In Nicaragua, for example, between 1930 and 1932, the United States established at least eight military garrisons. In Panama, where the United States intervened 24 times between 1856 and 1990, the nation built fourteen bases as part of gaining access to the Panama Canal Zone in perpetuity, as well as extensive powers of land expropriation and interference outside the Zone. Like Cuba, Panama became an “American colony in all but name.”

From the Publisher
Crazy Horse died that night, September 5, 1877, at the age of thirty-five. At dawn the next day the soldiers presented the dead chief to his father and mother. They put the body of Crazy Horse into a wooden box, fastened it to a pony-drawn travois and carried it to Spotted Tail agency, where they mounted it on a scaffold. All through the Drying Grass Moon, mourners watched beside the burial place. And then in the Moon of Falling Leaves came the heartbreaking news: the reservation Sioux must leave Nebraska and go to a new reservation on the Missouri River. Through the crisp, dry autumn of 1877, long lines of exiled Indians driven by soldiers marched northeastward toward the barren land. Along the way, several bands slipped away from the column and turned northwestward, determined to escape to Canada and join Sitting Bull. With them went the father and mother of Crazy Horse, carrying the heart and bones of their son. At a place known only to them, they buried Crazy Horse somewhere near Chankpe Opi Wakpala, the creek called Wounded Knee.

Belisle Nweke considers Macbeth
The Editor AMANDALA Dear Sir, It is still important to teach Shakespeare in our Belizean schools. Nevertheless, with the dumbing down of examinations, declining standards, teachers forced to boost students’ self-esteem at the expense of basic standards, and an obvious dysfunctional educational system, thousands of Belizean students will graduate from our educational institutions in a couple of months time with only the haziest idea of history, politics, culture, and great literature. Why is sixteenth century William Shakespeare relevant to Belize, particularly at this point in time? Of all Shakespeare’s plays, Macbeth and Richard III are the most damning about bad government and treacherous, power-hungry leadership. They also conclude with their destruction. Macbeth is actually about politics, and is one of the most contemporary plays ever written. It is about laws, allegiances and treachery within a nation, and the very fate of a country being at stake. In it are lessons for all politicians to decipher – if they can!

“Legalize it, don’t criticize it.”
It was the late great Peter Tosh, himself who said, “Legalize it, don’t criticize it.” The Social Security Board today held the final round of its 2016 debate competition which featured a hotly contested debate between Ecumenical Junior College (EJC), from the Stann Creek District, and the Corozal Junior College (CJC), from the Corozal District, on the topic, “The Criminal Legislation of marijuana has been a major discussion in many countries. Do you believe that marijuana should be legalized in Belize?” Ecumenical Junior College (EJC) argued in the affirmative and Corozal Junior College (CJC) argued in the negative. Coincidentally, today marks one year since Jamaica, our sister country, has enacted legislation in the decriminalization of marijuana. Opening statements from Ecumenical Junior College highlighted the fact that around 3.8% of the Earth’s population use marijuana. They also stated the many medicinal and alternative uses of marijuana for which Belize can reap sweet financial gains instead of criminalizing the common man for a stick of weed.

A surging armed group in Guatemala?
In the previous edition of the Amandala, we featured a story that had been aired on Krem about the alleged surging of an armed group in western Guatemala. Reports from Huehuetenango, Guatemala tell of videos circulating, allegedly made by a group of armed campesinos, or peasant farmers, under the self-described banner of Fuerzas Armadas Campesinas (FAC- Armed Campesino Forces). The FAC has received much attention (20,000+ YouTube views of a video attributed to them) although they have reportedly not carried out a single armed action. The videos of masked men holding guns have sparked debate. Some grassroots organizers have warned that the video may be a false production as part of the state’s strategy to criminalize community leaders and militarize the region. In the most recent video, which is the second reportedly produced by this group, a man wearing a black cloth covering his face speaks to the camera, introducing himself as Subcomandante (Subcommander) Toledo. The message he explains in Spanish during the 5 minutes, is to encourage other peasant farmers to join in “the struggle”. He emphasizes a call against “national and transnational companies” that are involved in projects including hydroelectric dams, mining, planting of palm oil and other projects. Toledo warns to the “campesinado” — other peasant farmers: “the objective of the businesses is to destroy us, to destroy our rivers, to destroy our natural riches that come from our Mayan ancestors”.

Bandits drop BDF; Assassins shock Police
The semifinals of the Premier League of Belize (PLB) 2015-2016 Closing Season came to an end yesterday with games played at the MCC Grounds in Belize City and the Norman Broaster Stadium in San Ignacio. MCC: Pretty football is difficult to materialize on the still dusty, irregular surface of the MCC, despite the deceptive grass cover, which does not stop the rising clouds of black dust whenever the ball is kicked, and still causes bad bounces at critical times when strikers are trying to “shake” defenders. Nevertheless, Belmopan Bandits FC took their 2-1 win from last week into the MCC yesterday against Belize Defence Force FC, who are yet to lose this season on their home turf in the old capital. A draw was enough for the Bandits to gain the aggregate win and advance to the finals, and that is exactly what they came away with. Bandits got on the scorecard first through a penalty conversion in the last minute of first half by, captain, Elroy Smith after BDF goalie Tevin Gamboa had taken down the Bandits’ Jeromy “Jarro” James in the eighteen, in what many fans thought was offside position. But, despite no offside flag being waved, Gamboa’s take-down was ill advised, and gave referee Christopher Reid little choice. Gamboa guessed right, but Smith’s kick was hard enough to still hit the back of the net after a slight deflection.

Quick reflexes saved man from certain death in road accident
A man is lucky to be alive after he slammed into a truck at about 10:00 Friday morning while riding a bicycle. He landed beneath the moving truck, but quickly escaped from under the truck before the back wheels rolled over him. As a result he escaped with slight scrapes and bruises, and a damaged bicycle. Police say that the man was riding his bicycle towards Belize Corozal Road from a side street in Orange Walk Town, but as he was about to cross the road when the traffic lights turned green, he collided with the side of a truck that had already started moving, in response to the green light.

Post Office employee pleads guilty to theft of $20,610
A former employee of the Belize Postal Service was arraigned on charges of theft this afternoon when he appeared at the Magistrate’s Court and he pleaded guilty to stealing $20,610 from the Post Office during the period of July to December 2015. Sergio Alonso Patt, a resident of San Jose, Orange Walk District, appeared before Magistrate Carlon Mendoza and pleaded guilty to six counts of theft from the Belize Postal Service. The 31-year-old Patt appeared in court along with some members of his family, who were very emotional when they learned that he would not be going back home with them, but instead would be taking up a one-year residence at the Belize Central Prison. Patt’s new wife and his brother appeared in court with him. In asking for leniency, Patt told Magistrate Mendoza, “I did it because of sickness. I had my mother sick. She died from diabetes. Then my brother was sick and I have three children. Then my wife died a year ago.”

Shoman shares and PUP prepares
Today, Thursday, the Opposition People’s United Party held an almost three-hour intense informational meeting chaired by Ambassador Assad Shoman at Independence Hall on Queen Street. Invited parliamentarians and standard bearers engaged in a discussion that featured “an update on the Sarstoon, Belize-Guatemala [situation] generally and the role of the party in the process,” remarked former Foreign Minister and Opposition Senator Eamon Courtenay. Courtenay further emphasized that today’s informational meeting was simply to acquire, adequate information to make decisions, as it is the National Executive and the National Party Council that will set the policies for the People’s United Party. “The party and the Party Leader have committed to educating the members of the National Executive, the parliamentarians, former standard bearers and also the wider Belizean society on all issues surrounding Belize-Guatemala,” added PUP Chairman, Henry Charles Usher.

Marage Road: a rural warzone
It appears to many members of the public that Marage Road, Ladyville, Belize District, which is enveloped by overgrown bushes, has been steadily devolving into a rural epicenter for criminal warfare. This rocky strip of road has been the scene of several gruesome murders – from the early morning, November 25, 2012 slaughter of three-fourths of the Vellos family to the April 7, 2016 murder of 18-year-old Merkel Pitts. However, on Sunday, April 16, 2016, at around 2:50 a.m., a family was spared this ever-more-commonplace Marage Road fate. Ladyville police visited Marage Road this weekend after receiving a report from Cynthia Lozano, 43, a business woman, that several shots were fired at her home.

Breaking Belize NewsPJ

Peter Sutherland is accused of robbery and wounding Tony Gillings
Tony Gillings was robbed and injured in an attack on Sunday morning on the North Side of Belize City. His accused attacker is 29 year old Peter Sutherland who was remanded without bail by Chief Magistrate Ann-Marie Smith after appearing in her court this morning. Gillings lost […]

28 year old sales representative is charged with two counts of unlawful sexual intercourse
Shane Gentle, sales representative of Tibruce Street, is charged with two counts of unlawful sexual intercourse of a 13 year old girl. The teenager accused him of having sex with her twice on March 24, 2016. A medical examination conducted on the child confirmed […]

Felix brothers to be tried for murder again
Brothers Maurice and Emory Felix, accused but never convicted after three trials of the murder of Mitchum Heredia over a decade ago, are once again to go before the Supreme Court on a murder charge. This time they are accused of the murder of […]

Court spares American visitor charged with cannabis
Belize City Magistrate Carlon Mendoza elected to discharge a cruise ship visitor to Belize after she was caught with cannabis this morning. 31 year old Ashley Williams of Virginia, USA, was held for 1.8 grams of the drug found in her handbag by a […]

Alrick Smith family sues Government over gun detention
This morning Supreme Court Justice Shona Griffith began hearing the case of Alrick Smith Senior of Giles Street, a construction worker, and his family: wife Sandra Casey; son Leon Smith; daughter Tamica Smith and niece Ishaida Brooks. While at home on July 7th, 2014, […]

Orange Walk police make arrests for drugs over the weekend
Orange Walk Police arrested three persons for drug offenses over the weekend. The first two arrests were made in San Jose Palmar Village where Carlos Smith and Erlinda Sanchez were found with weed. Police say that during a search of their premises officers found […]

Orange Walk Police find firearms, one homemade
Orange Walk police have confiscated a firearm and homemade weapon. Authorities report that the first weapon, a chrome Taurus .45 ACP caliber firearm with serial number R001649 was found in an empty lot on Savannah Street in Orange Walk Town along with an empty […]

Security Guard stabbed in confrontation with robbers at Free Zone
A security Guard was stabbed while he attempted to stop a robbery in the Corozal Commercial Free Zone. That is what reliable information has pointed out to BBN but there has not been any official word on the incident from Corozal Police. Our attempts to […]

Denny Grijalva is guilty of destroying Noh Mul
Denny Grijalva, proprietor of DE-Mar’s Construction; his wife, Emelda Grijalva; and his Project Manager, Javier Nuñez have been found guilty of destroying the Maya monument Noh Mul in San Jose Village, Orange Walk District. The incident took place on May 10 2013, when Grijalva’s workers […]

Tropic air disburses share of 2015 profit to employees
A press release from Tropic Air issued earlier today, announced that its employees will be receiving their share of the profit bonus for 2015, which is equal to one-third of the company’s profits for the fiscal year. President of Tropic Air, John Grief III, […]

Customs increase presence in Santa Cruz Orange Walk
The Belize Customs and Excise Department has set up a check point at the entrance of Santa Cruz Village in the Orange Walk District in an effort to tighten its control and vigilance of the area where significant contraband takes place. Senior Officer in Charge […]

PLB semi finals showdown
All the excitement over the weekend leaves two team to play in the semifinals for the Premiere League of Belize (PLB). On Sunday at the MCC Grounds in Belize City the Belmopan Bandits took on BDF FC. A penalty was scored by Belmopan Bandits’ […]

Blogs

Belize Wildlife and Referral Clinic
The Belize Wildlife and Referral Clinic (BWRC) is a registered non- profit animal welfare organization that operates country-wide in Belize. BWRC provides free medical care to injured, orphaned, neglected or otherwise imperiled wildlife. Medical care is provided at their veterinary clinic in Central Farm, Cayo District, by their staff of veterinarians and technicians. Wildlife patients are treated at BWRC, where they may undergo medical treatment and possibly rehabilitation prior to being returned to the wild. BWRC’s mission is to support wildlife conservation, animal health and welfare, and the veterinary profession in Belize through medical services, education, research, and collaboration. BWRC’s logo was inspired by Spartacus, a very special howler monkey that was found alone under a tree, surviving a predator attack, with his hands almost entirely detached. This event was the final push which motivated Dr. Isabelle and Justin Ford to open BWRC in 2012. The founder, Dr Isabelle Paquet Durand, is a Wildlife Veterinarian who has provided pro-bono care to wildlife for 20 years, 13 of those in Belize. BWRC is the only Wildlife Veterinary Clinic in Belize and the only veterinary clinic with x-ray and gas anesthesia machines. BWRC caters to both domestic and Wildlife patients, with the main focus on wildlife. Since 2012, BWRC has seen approximately 500 wildlife patients from all over the country.

Tropic Air Employees Benefit
Tropic Air announced today that Employees will receive their profit sharing bonus for 2015. This disbursement is based on audited financial results for the fiscal year and will equal one-third of the company’s profits. “Behind every milestone Tropic Air has celebrated—and there have been quite a few—are our Employees. They are our driving force, and I’m incredibly proud of the teamwork behind every accomplishment,” said John Greif III, President. “Our People have built one of Belize’s most admired companies, and they share in its success with this profit sharing contribution.” “People often asked me, what makes Tropic different,” said Steve Schulte. “The difference is our employees. Our unique people-focused culture, built on investing in our product and working together, is our primary strength.”

Where Criminal Minds Beyond Borders went wrong about San Pedro, Belize
There is always a buzz around town when Belize is featured on international television, but this one stirred us up more than usual. Belize was featured on Criminal Minds Beyond Borders (Episode: “Love interrupted”) and so many of us were waiting by our TV! We were very excited to see our jewel and the footage of it that would be seen around the world. Little did we know, we were in for a disappointment and a couple laughs to say the least. Although there was some footage of Belize on the show, it was very little and showed only the mainland which is not where the events were said to take place. Let’s break down where they went wrong shall we? The show featured a couple on their honeymoon in San Pedro, Belize, who were kidnapped. San Pedro is the name of the town on an island off the coast of Belize (as seen above). It can not be reached by road or bridge, the only way to get there is by airplane or boat. There is no international airport yet either and our airstrip only caters to small aircrafts, so that big jumbo jet the FBI arrived in would have no place to land on the island.

A VIEW FROM UP TOP – THE GREAT BLUE HOLE OF BELIZE!!
Tropic Air was gracious enough to invite us to experience the Blue Hole by air. This is an adventure we were all too eager to experience. The Great Blue Hole is one of the main reasons that thrill seekers, and divers flock to Belize from all walks of the world. Inscribed a World Heritage Site in 1996, this mystery of this massive blue expanse continues to awe the most experienced! The Blue Hole measures some 124 metres or approximately 400 feet deep and only few can boast actually diving to its bottom. After circling the blue hole a couple times, we make our way north – or is it south? – at this point I’m somewhat disoriented. In the distance we see this lil wreck literally sitting on the edge of Lighthouse Atoll about 5 minutes from the Blue Hole. This is the remains of what used to be a British Cargo Ship. After this, we make a second fly over the Great Blue Hole, this time we make about 5 rounds circling the hole. Then it’s time to return home.

Roatan - A Fool's Guide to West End and West Bay
So it's been far to long since this Fool meandered anywhere...and Roatan was the choice of places to break that drought. Tropic Air did an amazing job getting us there and back. We all saved 10% on our flights by using the Tacogirl.com discount code! The voyage started as a two man show - me and Pops, Easton. My friend Heidi heard about the voyage and wouldn't be denied access to this lovely idea either - so along she came. When a hotel is ranked 12 of 14 on TripAdvisor...there is a reason. Don't let your friends tell you otherwise...choose another hotel. Night one will go unmentioned as we all know I won't blast people and places; there are price points for all types, I can respect that. Really it was a good thing I learned quickly that West End isn't my scene. We spent night one there; it is a crowded part of Roatan, lots of people and things going on...something I wanted to escape a bit more. After night one East and I bid Heidi adieu and struck out on our own - bound for West Bay...and my vibe!

International Sourcesizz

Inside The Arts: JazzFest - Experience Belize
This week on Inside the Arts, the New Orleans Jazz and Heritage Festival kicks into high gear at the Fairgrounds. In addition to its stellar musical line-up, we sample Caribbean treasures as the Cultural Exchange Pavilion celebrates Belize.

Eater Nola's Guide To Jazz Fest Guides 2016
The New Orleans Jazz & Heritage Festival starts this Friday, April 22, kicking off two long, expensive weekends of a whole lot of music, and almost as much food and drink. The Fess takes over the Fair Grounds, spilling out into the Faubourg St John, but it's big enough that the entire city shifts into Jazz Fest mode for these two weeks. This poses a number of (good) problems for visitors and locals alike. People can be left overwhelmed with the options, wondering what the best bets are both during the Fest and across town. Where to get a free and delicious taste of Belize: Ann Maloney reports that Belize will be in the spotlight at Cultural Exchange Pavilion, including demos of two dishes unique to the Garifuna culture— Cassava bread, which will be made from 11 a.m. to 6 p.m. everyday outside the tent, and hudutu, "a Garifuna seafood coconut soup with green plantain" made at 3 p.m. at the Cajun Cabin Stage area. [NOLA.com]

Belize - Milling slows down in week 16
Belize Sugar Industries milled 38,647 tonnes of cane during week 16 of the 2015/16 crushing season, down from 52,966 a week earlier and also below 50,085 in the same period a year ago, the company announced.

5 Hotels and 5 Tours for the Eco-Conscious Traveler
It’s the rare hotel that doesn’t engage in sustainable practices like encouraging guests to reuse towels, but many hospitality companies and tour operators go much greener than that. Eco-tourism companies, which put a priority on sustainability as well as profit, cover everything from conservation-focused wildlife safaris to community-sustaining lodges and properties that grow their own food. Descriptions of some of the new and improved eco-lodges follow, along with those of new tours offering emissions-free bike trips, carbon-offset cruises and glimpses of rare wildlife. A 3,000-acre on-site farm produces more than 70 percent of the food served to guests of Belcampo Belize, a 17-room eco-lodge in a Belizean rain forest that balances food sustainability and natural adventure. The lodge’s many eco-initiatives include snorkeling outings with the chef to spear lionfish, an invasive species, for later meals, and fashioning furniture from fallen hardwood trees. In addition to frequent farm-to-table cooking classes and jungle foraging outings, the coming Belcampo Birding Encounter, Jan. 28 to Feb. 2, 2017, features birding excursions on and off the property with H. Lee Jones, author of “Birds of Belize.” Nightly rates from $407; birding package rates from $2,390 a person. Information at belcampobz.com.

Arlie Petters Appointed Trinity College Dean of Academic Affairs
Mathematical physicist Arlie Petters has been appointed dean of academic affairs and associate vice provost for undergraduate education, effective July 1. He will serve through June 2020. Petters holds Trinity College appointments as professor of mathematics and physics and an appointment at Duke’s Fuqua School of Business as a professor of business administration. He succeeds Lee D. Baker, who is returning to the faculty as a professor of cultural anthropology after serving two terms as dean of academic affairs. “Petters’ life experiences make him especially well suited to shepherd Duke’s undergraduate academic program,” said Valerie Ashby, dean of Trinity College of Arts & Sciences. “He was born in Dangriga, Belize, and came to live in New York as a teenager—living first hand the challenges of being an international student. He was also the first in his family to attend college. As a minority man in the sciences, he has learned how to thrive and crafted a deeply successful career.”

Regional tech community gathers in Jamaica
Anyone interested in the development of the Internet in Caribbean may have already heard of CaribNOG, the Caribbean Network Operators Group. Over the past decade, this volunteer-based community of computer engineers has grown into a formidable influencer in the regional technology arena. Today, its twice-yearly regional gatherings are among the most highly anticipated events on the Caribbean’s tech calendar. CaribNOG facilitates education and training for those in the Caribbean responsible for designing, deploying and maintaining computer networks. This year, when the three-day event kicks off on April 20 in Montego Bay, Jamaica, CaribNOG will be breaking new ground.

Videos

  • BPP'S PATRICK ROGERS DISCUSSES THE ICJ, COMPROMIS & GUATEMALA'S CLAIM TO BELIZE (PT. 1), 31min. The featured interview here on Belizean Legends highlights the work of the Belize Progressive Party's (BPP) political leader, Patrick Rogers, who has emerged today as a progressive voice on the Belize political scene after many years as an activist for many Belizean causes on the ground in Belize. Rogers, who is also an astute Belizean historian with credible historical facts to drive home his political views on the Belize / Guatemalan Dispute, spoke with Belizean Legends producer and host, Bilall Morris, about the insidious and treacherous Compromis signed by the Belize and Guatemalan governments in December of 2008, without the consent of the Belizean people, to take the aged old Belize / Guatemalan Dispute to the International Court of Justice (ICJ).

  • GHTC Belize Summer Mission Trip 2014, 3min. Grace & Holy Trinity Church Summer Belize Mission Trip, July 2014.

  • Belize cernie di Antonio Marzano, 4min. giardino tropicale del Belize

  • Declaraciones Jimmy Morales en The New York Times en Español, 2.5min. Guatemalan President Jimmy Morales, a TV comedian by trade, is offering Donald Trump "cheap labor" to build a border wall with Mexico. "To the gentleman who wants to build a wall, I offer cheap labor," Morales said during a Facebook Live interview by The New York Times en Español. "We have high quality labor, and we'll gladly build," Morales added. "Tell us the dimensions, and we know how to do it." Asked what advice he would give to a future U.S. president who wishes to end illegal immigration, Morales took a more serious tone. "We will contribute. We believe — although I have no reason to involve myself in U.S. migratory policy — we believe that it is necessary to think about migratory reform where many people who are there in an irregular manner will be regularized."

  • Snorkeling in Belize 2016 HD, 4min. Shot in San Pedro with GoPro Hero 4

  • Scuba diving In Hopkins Bay Belize, 6.5min. Took a awesome trip to Hopkins bay Belize and had some great dives as well as snorkeling. We dove on 6 dives each around 65 feet deep. This video has all kinds of aquatic wildlife. I hope you enjoy!

  • Wildtracks Belize, 4.5min. One of the most incredible experiences of my life squished into a one song video.

  • Macal River Canoe San Ignacio Belize Feb 2016, 3.5min.

    April 19, 2016


    FOR TODAY'S BELIZE WEATHER, CLICK HERE

    Click for our Daily Tropical Weather Report.

    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

    Stabbing incident in Caye Caulker leaves one death
    The peaceful community of Caye Caulker is shaken over the stabbing death of a long-time resident. The victim has been identified as Leon Karim Gordon, resident of ‘La Isla Cariñosa’ for over 10 years after moving from Belize City. Police have detained two men who are believed to be connected to the deadly incident that occurred shortly after 8pm on Sunday, April 17th at a local beach bar. Initial reports from the police indicate that Gordon was stabbed in the abdomen when he tried to separate a fight between one Austin Gabourel and Jeremy Rhaburn. Another person, only known as ‘Robert’, then allegedly inflicted the mortal wound on Gordon. Gabourel, along with his accomplice, then ran away in the direction of the area known as the Split. Gordon was transported to the local clinic on the island by family members, and later transported to the Belize Karl Heusner Memorial Hospital, where hours later, he succumbed to his injuries. Gabourel, along with another male person ‘whose name has not been disclosed by police’ have been detained. During his arrest, Gabourel had a

    Infusing taste buds with Caribbean Spice
    ‘Sugar, Spice, and everything nice’ has allowed Chef Libby Storey to keep one of the best kept cuisine secrets in Belize. Originally from the state of Louisiana, USA, Libby worked at different restaurants in the Eastern Caribbean, even attending the University of Virgin Islands in St Thomas. Dishing out the all artificial additives and flavors, Caribbean Spice products are 100% Belizean-made, with a combination of fresh ingredients from Libby’s greenhouse and fresh produce from local farmers’ markets. She has now evolved her business from ten to over 100, all-natural, organic products. From habanero paste, fruit butters, spice blends, seasonings, sea salt blends, mustards, marinades, vinegars, salad dressings, barbeque sauces, michelada mix and gourmet cooking sauces, Caribbean Spice caters to all palates! Libby’s hand crafted products are currently being sold at 12 Belize on Tarpon Street and The Greenhouse on Pescador Drive in San Pedro Town. As a business owner, she has encountered several stumbling blocks. “I have been to so many stores around Belize and the islands who just refused to carry my products. I would not be where I am today if it wasn’t for Evelia at the Greenhouse, she believed in me and carried every single one of my products,” said Libby.

    Are new construction projects including parking space?
    Progress and development on Ambergris Caye is seeing major construction projects steadily going up in San Pedro Town. The large-scale developments have raised concerns, especially related to traffic and parking. With traffic being one of the top issues on La Isla Bonita, the question is, do these buildings allocate adequate parking spaces in their plans? The San Pedro Sun spoke to Fidel Ancona from the Ambergris Caye Building Authority (ACBA). According to Ancona, allocating parking areas should be the number one requirement for any commercial building in Ambergris Caye. He also explained that strict construction guidelines must be adhered to, especially in the town core. “Any construction project must leave a space of five feet on two sides of the structure, with a minimum of ten feet at the back and eight feet for parking in front,” said Ancona. In an effort to clear the streets, similar regulations for onsite parking are enforced for residential buildings. With the construction of commercial buildings in downtown, and the traffic congestion and lack of adequate parking space, the ACBA is enforcing this regulation.

    ACES constructs greenhouse
    Ambergris Caye Elementary School (ACES) has added a greenhouse to their school grounds. With the priority to become a child friendly school, greenhouse coordinator, Teacher Sarah Jean Freudenberg, believes it is important to teach children sustainable living. So far, the students have planted cilantro, basil, mint, parsley, tomatoes, cucumbers, peppers, marigolds and wild flowers. Not only does the greenhouse fit in well with the curriculum of Belize, but it also teaches valuable life skills. It is important to plant and care for plants to learn those valuable skills. The hope is that children will become inspired and want to continue to grow fruits and vegetables all their lives. “I used to garden a lot in America, so it gives me an opportunity to share something I enjoy with the kids,” said Sarah.

    Container full of garbage tips over!
    A large shipping container filled with garbage was reported to have turned over near the San Pedro Solid Waste Transfer Station in Southern Ambergris Caye. The incident left a massive pile of trash along the road; spilling into the mangroves and floating into the nearby water ways. The mountain of filth sat at the location for over a week before any action was taken to rectify the situation. Several attempts were made to get the container on its wheels by using a 50-foot excavator, but to no avail. The next day a crane was brought in, and that did the job in a matter of minutes. However, the problem was not completely solved, as the garbage remained untouched. The San Pedro Sun reported the incident to the Hol Chan Marine Organization as well as the local municipal authorities at the San Pedro Town Council. Both committed to follow up on the issue and make the necessary reports after their investigations; but upon following up, the garbage remains where it fell.

    Ambergris Today

    Islanders Run/Walk 5K for Autism Awareness
    After a very successful event last year, island residents came together once again for the second annual Autism Awareness 5K Run/Walk held by Ambergris Caye Elementary School (ACES) that was held on Sunday, April 17, 2016. Over 130 participants registered, bought T-shirts, raffle tickets and made donations towards the worthy cause which proceeds will benefit ACES Special Education Scholarships and help create awareness in the community for children with disabilities. Ambergris Caye Elementary School (ACES) is the first school on Ambergris Caye to substantially separate a special education classroom that caters to island children with special needs. The classroom directly impacts students with disabilities and assists ACES in its efforts to provide quality education in Ambergris Caye.

    San Pedro Prepares for Biggest Lobster Fest at 10th Anniversary
    It was awarded Festival of the Year 2015 by the Belize Tourism Board for a reason; the San Pedro Lobster Festival has become one of the BIGGEST festivals in the country. This year it will consist of 11 days of day and night celebrations, all for the love of lobster. Celebrating the lobster season in Belize does not get better in Belize and this year San Pedro commemorates the tenth year of the festival that has gotten global attention and only seems to be growing bigger each year. The first festival was held in 2007 with a week of nightly events leading up to one epic block party. Over the past 10 years the festival has evolved into a 10 day festival filled with over 20 great activities and incredible lobster themed foods! The activities kick off on June 15th with the opening party. There will be daytime and night time events leading up to the Lobster Fest Central Park Block Party on Saturday, June 25th, featuring the musical talents of the Pannerifix Steel Band!

    San Pedro Town Council Seeks Advice and Solutions for Beach Erosion
    Caye Caulker just got its new beach and people are loving it, but while San Pedro, Ambergris Caye has benefited from beach reclamation from dreading projects in the past, erosion still proves to be an ongoing problem as development removes protective mangroves and adds unsightly seawalls. Evidence of long standing beach erosion is clear on most of the beaches in San Pedro, Ambergris Caye Belize. And its these seawalls that Ms. Carianne Johnson from the Pan American Development Fund (PADF) indicates are major culprits of further erosion of our beaches. She, along with Mr. Keith Nichols from the Caribbean Community Climate Change Center (CCCCC) arrived on the island on Wednesday, April 13, 2016 to conduct a visual assessment of the erosion that is highly affecting our beaches. They were accompanied by Deputy Mayor Gary Greif who gave them a tour of the island.

    Misc Belizean Sourcesmzz

    Belize Fishing report April 10th – April 16th, 2016
    Wow, the permit were happy this week (until they gat hooked that is) Over 16 permit were landed that I have record of, my guess is a few more were landed by some humble folks that did not report them for fear of seeming greedy! The youngest of the permit masters was Walker at 11 years old, quite a feat for any age. Our permit couple of the week was Hobbie and Jenn as they landed 2 each, Jenn’s Dad Jack got a well deserved permit, Chuck had a single day out but landed 2 permit, Sam got 2, Jack added 3 more, Young Nick got his first permit, and Ron rounded out the group recording another permit. The permit fishing doesn’t get any better.

    U.S. Citizen Town Hall Meeting - COROZAL
    The U.S. Embassy will be hosting a Town Hall Meeting for American Citizens on April 22nd Friday, April 22 at 11 AM - 1 PM in Corozal at the Jam Rock Bar & Grill. If you are an American Citizen residing in Belize in this area please join us.

    Poets Corner: Consent
    By Abdulmajeed K Nunez. Thirteen-year-old giving consent to four men is absurd The mere title gets on my last nerve Police charge two that’s the word Looking for the next two speaks wonders Belize does not have sufficient child protection laws for teenagers Our children are not protected from predators Human trafficker, pornographers, There are no social media laws Which almost makes child pornography a lost cause Then we glorify the shit by printing it in our newspapers They ought to be publicly flogged or dismembered Our law is apparent No child under age 14 can give consent Where the hell were her parents? They too need to be charged for being negligent Taking her to the station is not sufficient Newspapers are more concerned with sales than content This seems to be the grim reality That the men in our society Have no policy Fi di have sex with pickney

    APAMO celebrates its 8th Annual General Meeting
    On 16 April 2016, the umbrella organization, the Association of Protected Areas Management Organizations (APAMO), celebrated its 8th Annual General Meeting under the theme: "Coming together, sharing together, working together, succeeding together." An important highlight of the meeting was the election of officers for its governing body, the Executive Council, and the newly elected chairperson is Mrs. Froyla Tzalam- Executive Director of Sarstoon Temash Institute for Indigenous Management (SATIIM). The network organization congratulated Ms. Tzalam in her new undertaking and committed to supporting her and the newly elected Council in serving its members and engaging Government in steering policies and strategies for the proper management of protected areas in Belize.

    Belize Book Week 2016
    It's going to be a Belize Book Weekend here in Cayo. The opening ceremony will be Friday, at 9:00am, at Falcon Field. There will be a book fair on Saturday, also starting at 9:00am, at the San Ignacio Public Library. Everyone is welcome to come out. Reading is the key.

    Assad Shoman Discusses the ICJ
    Ambassador Assad Shoman visited Sacred Heart Junior College on Wednesday to explain the history of Belize's borders, treaties, and the need to go to the ICJ. Trying not to use the term 'Guatemalan Claim' in this article since that gives it way more credit than it deserves. Let's just call it the Guatemalan Farce instead. Mr. Shoman was clear and concise, and explained to everyone the reasoning behind the push to go to the ICJ. The borders have been observed for over 150 years now, and it appears that it's really only the Guatemalan government that uses the issue to garner votes from the misinformed and uneducated.

    Book Week 2016!

    Paint Party Events
    Come paint with us "Anchored in Belize" at Crazy Canucks. See you there! Starts On: April 21, 2016 at 2:00 PM

    Leon Gordon Murdered on Caye Caulker
    On 17th April, 2016 about 8:15pm Caye Caulker Police responded to a fight at SIP &DIP Liquor Establishment located on Avenida Hicaco, where Sharlene Young reported that her common-law husband Leon Gordon was stabbed to his abdomen. Initial investigation revealed that Leon went to separate a fight between one Austin Gabourel and Jeremy Rhaburn, when another male person only known as 'Robert' allegedly stabbed Leon. Austin along with his accomplices ran away in the direction of the Split. Leon was transported to the clinic by family members and later transferred to KHMH. Austin was located and detained and was observed to have a cut wound to his face and left little finger. He was treated and is now in police custody. At 2:45am on 18th April, 2016 Leon Gordon succumbed to his injuries. Police have since detained two male persons.

    Presenting Caye Caulker's Mural
    Come to the basketball court for the big unveiling of the new mural!

    CLOSURE OF THE BELIZE ARCHIVES AND RECORDS SERVICE: MONDAY, APRIL 25th AND FRIDAY, 29th APRIL, 2016
    The Belize Archives and Records Service will be closed on Monday, 25th April, 2016 from 8:00 A.M. to 1:00 PM. to officially inaugurate its renovated and expanded facility at 26/28 Unity Blvd. In addition, the Department will be having its annual Staff Retreat on Friday, 29th April,2016. The Department will re-open on Tuesday, May 3, 2016. The Department regrets any inconveniences caused by these closures. For more information kindly contact the Belize Archives and Records Service at Tel:822-2247 or 2097 or by email: info@archives.gov.bz

    Cancer Ride 2016. May 7th, 2016. Sign up!!!
    CEO CAUCUS CHALLENGE!!!

    2016 TASTE OF BELIZE COMPETITION!!!
    The Belize Tourism Board is calling for applications for the 2016 TASTE OF BELIZE COMPETITION!!! Closing date for applications is this FRIDAY! Be sure to go to: https://btb.travelbelize.org/btb/taste-of-belize-2016 to download your application forms. Sign up foodies!

    SACNW APRIL MEETING
    On Thursday, April 14, 2016, Mayor Daniel Guerrero and Councilors: Hector Alamilla, Gabriel Nuñez, Flora Ancona and Ruben Gonzalez attended the South Ambergris Neighborhood Watch’S monthly meeting. Also present, were Superintendent Sandra Bodden and other members of the San Pedro Police Formation. The SACNW is one of the most active neighborhood watch groups in San Pedro. Mayor Daniel was invited to share a few words, where he took the opportunity to congratulate the SACNW for their efforts in keeping their neighborhood safe and clean. Mayor Guerrero also went further on to mention that the south road will be getting a major upgrade and also the opening of junction from San Pablo leading to the San Pedrito area for all heavy machinery, as well as to help with the alleviation of traffic congestion.

    MAYOR MEETS WITH STAKEHOLDERS AND HOTELIERS
    On Thursday, April 14, 2016, Mayor Daniel Guerrero met with various stakeholders and hoteliers from Ambergris Caye to discuss the newly implemented regulations in regards to deliveries in town. Mayor Daniel Guerrero emphasized that the new delivery schedule is still in its trial stage and observations are still being made in order to better the strategy being implemented. Mayor Guerrero closed his remarks by asking the present audience for their support and to give the new strategy an opportunity to work. Majority of those present are in favor of the the strategy and believe it was a necessary action into the right direction into having a more safer San Pedro for our children, visitors and residents.

    Basketball equipment refurbished at Boca Del Rio Park
    The Phoenix staff just installed two new basketball rims, refurbished the back boards, & repainted the supports at Boca Del Rio Park in San Pedro. In the background is the playground equipment we recently repainted. Big thanks to Blue Water Grill - San Pedro, Belize and Canary Cove, Ambergris Caye, Belize for all the help. Now that he's retired maybe we can get Kobe Bryant down to Belize to test it out. We got just the spot for you to stay. What do you think Mamba?

    Papaya N Lime Delight
    2 cups diced papaya 1 cup cold water Juice of a half a lime 4 ice cubes 3 teaspoon sugar OR 2 tablespoons honey

    Caramel Apple Pork Chops
    Preheat oven to 175 degrees F (80 degrees C). Place a medium dish in the oven to warm. Heat a large skillet over medium-high heat. Brush chops lightly with oil and place in hot pan. Cook for 5 to 6 minutes, turning occasionally, or until done. Transfer to the warm dish, and keep warm in the preheated oven. In a small bowl, combine brown sugar, salt and pepper, cinnamon and nutmeg. Add butter to skillet, and stir in brown sugar mixture and apples. Cover and cook until apples are just tender. Remove apples with a slotted spoon and arrange on top of chops. Keep warm in the preheated oven.

    Surrounded by beauty, unable to see it? That’s life in Paradise
    During a recent conversation with a photographer friend, Karen Brodie, we discussed the loss of the ability to see. Not blindness. We were talking about the thing that happens when you pass something so many times that you simply stop seeing it. This is a real thing. Ask any mom who walks into her teenage child’s bedroom and thinks, “How can they not see these piles of filthy clothes all over the floor?” Trust me, even though they made those piles, their eyes do not register their existence — after a week or so. This odd sort of selective sight affects all of us. It could be the beggar we pass every morning on the way to work. It could be a pile of garbage or a broken down car that has been on the side of the road for ages. It could be something magnificent we pass by every day, like the statue of David or the Eiffel Tower or the Statue of Liberty or . . . yes, even some of the more beautiful parts of Ambergris Caye. This has begun to trouble me because after two years of living on this beautiful island I am beginning to fear that things that once filled me with wonder now leave me sort of cold. At least, the urge to photograph what I see has cooled quite a bit.

    Meeting of the Maya Community Council in Livingston, Guatemala
    FCD’s partner organization, Asociacion Balam successfully conducted its IV meeting of the Maya Community Council in Livingston, Guatemala. At this event participating members ratified the action plan to promote collaboration between the Maya communities of Belize and Guatemala.

    Channel 7

    "Gaza" Grieves, "Shiny" Slain
    It was a deadly weekend in Belize - with three homicides, and six persons shot. Most of that violence is believed to have stemmed from the public slaying of a gang boss. Word spread like wildfire from the south on Saturday night that one of the most well known gang figures in Belize, Gerald "Shiny" Tillett had been killed in Dangriga. Shiny is the brother of Shelton Pinky Tillett - the former George Street leader - who was killed on Saturday April 21 of 2012. One-week short of three years later - older brother, 37 year old Gerald was slain in Dangriga, in what appears to be an execution style killing. But, this one happened at a popular nightspot, and unleashed chaos in the heart of Dangriga town. Courtney Weatherburne went there today looking for answers:..

    Was Kadeem Killed In Retaliation?
    Shortly after word reached the city that Shiny Tillett had been killed, three persons were shot, one of them fatally. He is 22 year old Kadeem Castillo who was gunned down on Madam Liz Crescent just after midnight on Saturday. Castillo was socializing near his home at 7761 Madam Liz, off Faber's road when a gray car pulled up, three men got out, and started firing in his direction. Castillo was with another person, but he was the only one who was caught by the spray of bullets; he ended up with four shots to the head and body. So was this murder a direct retaliation? Senior Superintendent Alden Dawson told us today that although they cannot be one hundred percent certain at this time, they are looking at that possibility. Sr. Supt. Alden Dawson, Dep. OC, eastern Division South: "Sometime after 12am on the 17th of April, police were called out to a location on Madam Liz Crescent where they saw the lifeless body of a young 22 year old man, Kadeem Castillo. A further check of the body revealed that he had two gunshot wounds to the chest and two to the head. Our investigation so far is that Castillo and another person was socializing on that street when a car drove up, 3 persons alighted the vehicle and fired several shots. Four of which caught the now deceased."

    City Shootings Jumped Off Right After Shiny Slain
    Now although Castillo was the only person killed in the city after the Shiny slaying, as we said, two others were shot. Sometime around 9 pm on Saturday, 27 year old Justin Belgrave and 24 year old Venario Taka were shot in different locations. One incident occurred by Berger Field on Vernon Street and the other occurred on Glynn Street heading towards Euphrates Avenue. So with the pair of shooting happening just hours after the Dangriga execution of Shiny Tillett, were these related? Again the Deputy Southside Commander was cagey: Sr. Supt. Alden Dawson, Dep. OC, Eastern Division South "Justin Belgrave, a 27 year old who was at a shop on Vernon Street, had heard shots being fired. He ran and later realized he got shot in his groin genital area." Jules Vasquez: "What time was that?" Sr. Supt. Alden Dawson, Dep. OC, Eastern Division South: "That was after 9."

    Police Play Down Gang Warfare Angle
    So three city shootings, one of them fatal, and south side police say they have no suspects. And while this happens, the possibility of an all-out gang warfare in the streets of Belize City hangs ominously. That's because a reputed gang boss has been killed - most likely a hit from a rival gang. So, are police bracing for the possibilities of further outbursts of gang violence in the city? Well, we know that on Sunday two things happened: the GSU and southside police stepped up their operations in known gang areas, and called in all the major gang players to a mediation meeting. Here is what Sr. Superintendent Dawson told us. Jules Vasquez: "Sir, we know that you all have brought violence in the Southside, Mr. Williams recently read the figures, and they are down significantly. How can 3 shooting within 4 hours; one homicide, 2 shootings - how can those not be a direct consequence of what happen at 7pm in Dangriga Town?"

    GSU Activated To Hold Down Retaliation
    One of the police personalities leading the charge on this one is GSU Commander Mark Flowers. All indications are that the Dangriga murder, and the aftershocks in Belize City were gang related. That's why Flowers rolled out his GSU team on special operations starting at 9:00 on Sunday morning. And, in the afternoon, he was part of that mediation meeting with gang figures. Today in Belmopan he shed more light on the gang element and assured the public that the police are working to contain any further flare ups. Courtney Weatherburne: "Sir, in terms of the gang context could you say, based on your intelligence, if the alleged shooter is associated with the South Side gang?" Supt. Mark Flowers, Commander, GSU: "We know that he is a Dangriga resident who have lived in Belize City and who is also closely associated, that is a suspected shooter, with the South Side gang. We are still trying to put together the pieces. The investigators are out in Dangriga to establish his full unequivocal participation in that shooting. And I guess that from there the follow up, if there's a need to arrest and charge will take place. We know that he is associated with Belize City South Side gang."

    Sip And Dip Stabbing Was Fatal
    The family of 29 year-old Caye Caulker Resident Leon Gordon is mourning his loss after he was fatally stabbed in a bar brawl at the Sip & Dip bar in Caye Caulker. It happened last night at around 8:00. Gordon was trying to act as peacemaker when he was stabbed with a broken pint bottle. He intervened after the bar owner and a patron got into a fight when the owner tried to throw the patron out for acting disorderly. Gordon reportedly tried to stop the fight, and that's when he was stabbed. He was rushed from the Island to the KHMH, and his family told us that Doctors put him through two emergency surgeries to try and save his life. But, at around 2:45 this morning, during the second surgery, he died on the operating table.

    Alleged Placencia Pedophile Shot In Driveway
    43 year-old David Richard Taylor, the British Belizean who was charged in December 2012 of extreme acts of pornographic exploitation of boys on the Placencia Peninsula, is at the KHMH recovering tonight. On Saturday night, he was shot at his home between miles 26 and 27 on the Phillip Goldson highway, in what police believe at this time is a robbery. Today, the Officer commanding Ladyville Police briefed the press on what they know so far: Inspector Juanito Cocom, OC, Ladyville Police: "Ladyville CIB responded to a distress call at Mile 26 and 3/4 on Philip Goldson Highway, Biscayne Village. When they arrived, they observed in the living room of a concrete bungalow dwelling structure a clear descent male person with what appeared to be a gunshot wound to his chest area.."

    Grijalva Guilty!
    The name of the Maya site Noh Mul burst into the national consciousness in 2013 when the media discovered that contractor Denny Grijalva's company De-Mars Construction was using the ancient ruin's limestone structure for quarry material for to pave village roads! It was a national and international outrage, and Grijlava, his wife and his foreman were charged for removing parts of an ancient monument, and causing the destruction of an ancient monument. The case was tried by Chief Magistrate Anne Marie Smith and her written 16 page judgment was handed down today. She minced no words and found Grijalva's defense lacking. She concluded, quote, "The damage to the mound is irreversible as the excavation has resulted in only the core being left. The Court understands the outrage experienced by the professionals at 'NICH'..."

    Father Of Teen That Cops Killed Is Outraged
    The death of 18 year old Hilberto Sotz in police custody on Caye Caulker isn't easy to forget. It was a dark episode for the police department, and prompted a spontaneous riot in the village. Police acted quickly and charged two of their own for murder; Detective Leonardo Nunez and Constable Hallet King. But last week Friday, Much to the dismay of Hilberto Sotz's family those charges were reduced to manslaughter. Today Hilberto's father visited our studios to express his discontent with the way the court proceedings have been going. He is upset because the charges were reduced, but more so because the directive came from the DPP. Here's what he told us today:

    Shot Up In Ladyville
    Ladyville Police also have to investigate another shooting which happened early on Saturday morning. Well-known food vendor Cynthia Lozano, who has made our newscast before, was at her home when someone came to her door and fired shots into it. Fortunately, no one was injured, but it left the family shaken. Here's what police had to say about it today: "The other shooting incident occurred on Sunday 16th, April at about 2:50am. Police visited Marage Road, Ladyville where one, Cynthia Lozano, 43 year old business woman of that address reported that she was at home when she heard a sound like someone kicking her door and thereafter she heard 3 gunshots. Police upon arriving at the scene observed 3 apparent bullet holes in the front of her residence. The front door in front of her residence, one to the wall and one to her kitchen cabinet. The scene was processed whereby 3 expended 9mms shells and 3 slugs were recovered. The complainant said at this time she had no suspects and the investigation is on."

    Pilfering Postman Pleads Guilty
    31 year-old Sergio Patt, the former Manager of the Post Office's Express Mail Section, is in jail tonight he pleaded guilty to stealing almost 21 thousand dollars. As we told you Patt is accused of embezzling the money between the months of October and November 2015. Police investigations show that Patt produced a bogus spread sheet to try to hide the shortages. Well, he was arraigned today before Magistrate Carlon Mendoza, and he did not waste the court's time. He pled guilty to all 6 counts of theft, and he said that he stole the money because he wanted to help his mother who is sick with diabetes. He told the court that his wife has passed away, and he is the sole breadwinner for his 3 children.

    Guatemalan Gold Diggers
    After a BDF soldier was shot on Holy Saturday in an apparent ambush by Guatemalan civilians, it put the whole country on notice that the Chiquibul Forest is more dangerous than ever. But, the Guatemalan poachers, encroachers and lawbreakers persist, and on Saturday three of them were caught almost 5 miles within Belizean territory, near to one of the Ceibo Chico creeks in southern Chiquibul. A joint patrol of BDF and the Friends for Conservation and Development found the trio with 390 grams, or almost a pound of weed and three empty vials - the types used for gold panning. The three admitted knowing that they were inside Belizean territory, and one of them volunteered that this was the second time he was in the area and all the gold found in the Chiquibul is sold in the village of Monte Los Olivos at approximately $52.00 Belize dollars per gram. He told the patrol that there could be as many as 40 persons in the area from several Guatemalan villages along the border. The trio reported seeing 10-15 gold panners leaving the area just as they were arriving.

    Rural Weed In Abundance
    Ladyville police are reporting that they made several drug seizures over the weekend. The first is school bag containing marijuana a bus, and the other is package of marijuana that police found on 2 adults a minor. The Officer Commanding Ladyville police shared the details with the media today: Inspector Juanito Cocom, OC, Ladyville Police: "We have two drugs seizures on Saturday 16th, April at about 1700 hours (5pm), the rural rapid response team removed a school bag containing four hundred and two point five grams of suspected cannabis off a public transportation. This occurred between miles 14 and 15 on the Philip Goldson Highway. The drugs was deposit as found property. Another drug seizure on Sunday 17th, April, 2pm, the relief personnel from Ladyville police on patrol interdicted 107.3 grams of suspected cannabis and subsequently charged 3 persons, a minor along with Darrell Franklyn, 36 years Belizean vendor and Rufino Hernandez, 28 years old. All of Lords Bank Village."

    Fantasy Five Woman Nets Quarter Mil For City Woman
    18, 25, 20, 22, 19 . Those were the fantasy 5 numbers for Saturday. Now if you didn't win, these numbers mean nothing to you but city resident Judith Savory picked them individually, and they mean everything, because tonight she's more than a quarter million dollars richer. Today Savory went to collect her winning cheque, and she told the media how surprised she was when she found out she had won. Savory collected $263,500 after taxes.

    Strong Man Showdown
    Over the Weekend the Belize Body Building Federation held its 5th annual Strongmen's competition. It has become a popular challenge and showcase which body builders and weight lifting enthusiasts train for year round. This year's competition had the participation of 13 competitors- 11 males and 2 females. Our cameras were out at BTL park on Sunday to catch all the action, all the trials, all the failures and all the successes of these heavy weight lifters as they went into "Beast Mode." It was a very competitive event but in the end only one could be named the strongest man and the strongest woman. In the males category the gold went to Oyinkro Akobodor, known as "Power," snapping Victor Valencia's 3 year winning streak. Valencia was second this year, followed behind by James Jones in third place. In the females category Cricel Castillo came out on top followed by Chyna Alvarez. Castillo was also the only woman who participated in all male events.

    Dr. Assad Makes Case For ICJ
    On Friday's newscast, we had extensive coverage of the launch of the Teachers Union Stand Up for Belize Education campaign. But, the event went until the evening, and our team had to race back from Benque to get it in for the news - meaning that there's some stuff which we didn't manage to fit into Friday's news. We showed you a portion of the presentation that Assad Shoman gave to the hundreds of teachers on the latest information relating to the Belize Guatemala Territorial Dispute. He also focused a quite a bit of his nearly 1 hour presentation on why he thinks that the ICJ is Belize's best option to settle the territorial dispute with Guatemala. Here's how he made the point based on over 40 years of research:

    Assad Said "Artificial Border"
    As you saw in our Friday newscast, quite a number of teachers used the question and answer section of the forum to criticize Foreign Minister Elrington's perceived weak stance on the Guatemalan dispute. We'll have a little more on that for you tonight, but first, here's Assad Shoman defending Elrington by publicly accept responsibility for the polarizing term, "artificial border". You will remember that Elrington had to deal with a firestorm of public criticism for using the term, but on Friday, Shoman told the teachers they should be upset with him, since he, Shoman, used the term first to describe Belize's border. Here's his hearty disclaimer: "Others complain, they say Mr. Elrington is the foreign minister and therefore we should not take the case to the ICJ. That makes no sense to me. He will not present the case in the court. We have a team of lawyers that we have identified. People criticized the minister because he spoke about artificial frontier. But I said that before he said that."

    Assad: Time To Abandon Maritime Areas
    One other issue that Shoman talked about with the teachers is the status of the Maritime Areas Act. According to Shoman, it was crafted with Belize only claiming 3 miles of it territorial seas with the condition that it would negotiate with Guatemala on its land borders. Now that those negotiations have failed, and both countries are contemplating going to the ICJ, Shoman says the law is obsolete and needs to be repealed. Here's how he made the case that Belize needs to claim its 12 miles of territorial waters urgently: Ambassador Assad Shoman - Opposition representative: "Let's look at the Maritime Areas Act. Section 3 says; that the territorial sea of Belize comprises those areas of the sea having as their inner limits the baseline of the territorial sea and that the outer limits aligned measured up to 12 nautical miles from that baseline. But then subsection 2 says, that from the Sarstoon to the Ranguana instead of 12 miles, we limit that to 2 miles. When under international law we have a right to 12 miles. But section 2 says we will limit that to 3 miles. But then it also says "the purpose of that limitation is to provide a framework for the negotiation of a definitive agreement on territorial differences with the Republic of Guatemala.

    Teachers Attack, Wilfred Winces
    So, here's a little more from Elrington's public trial by from the teachers. As you saw, Shoman publicly shared his skepticism of Guatemalan Foreign Affairs Minister Carlos Raul Morales. Elrington on the other hand, has been criticized for what seems to be a cozy relationship with Morales. One of the teachers asked Elrington publicly about that, and here's how he responded: Teacher: "If Honorable Assad Shoman in 42 years could not get the Guatemalans to be our friends, why is it today that Hon. Sedi Elrington is selling that idea to us?" Hon. Wilfred Elrington, Minister of Foreign Affairs: "The question of why I am trying to sell the friendship to Belize - I think it is all common sense that if you have a big powerful neighbor behind you, it is in your interest to be friendly with them. You can't be vigilant - you can't be awake for 24 hours a day and protect yourself. "

    Channel 5

    George Street Boss Murdered
    Fear blanketed Belize City and Dangriga as the most violent weekend since the start of the year started to unfold. The murder of the reputed gang boss of George Street, [...]

    Kadeem Castillo Gunned Down in the City
    “Shiny” Tillett’s murder triggered another and hours later, twenty-two year old Kadeem Castillo was gunned down in Belize City. His body was found on Madam Liz Crescent in the Faber’s [...]

    Leon Gordon Killed While Parting Fight
    It won’t get as much attention as the weekend’s bloodshed and sensational murder of a notorious gang figure, but there was another killing on the island of Caye Caulker. It [...]

    Trio of Guatemalans Detained in Ceibo Chico
    We’ll have more urban violence coming up, but deep inside the Chiquibul Forest, a trio of Guatemalans was detained after being found with a quantity of suspected cannabis in the [...]

    Guatemalans Reject Belize’s Sarstoon Protocols
    There is significant, though certainly not surprising information in respect of eleven proposals presented to Guatemala by Belize. News Five has received information indicating that Guatemala has responded to the [...]

    Police Investigate String of Shootings in the Old Capital
    Earlier we told you about murders in Dangriga, Belize City and Caye Caulker. But there was a string of shootings, in particular in the city, where two men were injured [...]

    ACP Chester Williams Says Some Shootings Were Grief-Related
    Before leaving Belize today to attend a training course in the U.S., Regional Commander of Eastern Division South, Assistant Commissioner of Police Chester Williams, told News Five there were up [...]

    British National Shot During Alleged Robbery Attempt
    He was arrested in 2012 on charges of unnatural sex with a minor, but tonight British national David Taylor is recovering from a gunshot wound to the chest. Taylor was [...]

    Unidentified Gunmen Target Home in Ladyville
    Just hours after that Ladyville Police were called out again for another shooting on Marage Road. According to reports, Ladyville businesswoman Cynthia Lozano told Police that at around three that [...]

    Police Act Swiftly to Deter Retaliation Violence
    In light of the recent shootings in the city, police stepped up operational presence in known gang areas to mitigate likely retaliation. On Sunday, ACP Chester Williams, Dianne Finnegan and [...]

    A Look at Gang Movements Across Districts
    The unimpeded movement of gang members across various parts of the country, including Dangriga, has raised serious concerns for residents, as well as law enforcement.  It is well known that [...]

    Ladyville Police Seize Drugs – Arrest 3 Persons
    Officers of the Rural Eastern Division are also cracking down on the movement of narcotics in the community, and report   that over the weekend they seized a total of over [...]

    Former Post Office Employee Convicted for Theft
    A former employee at the Post Office in Belize is spending his first night behind bars.  Thirty-two-year old Sergio Alonso Patt, of San Jose Village, Orange Walk Town was arraigned [...]

    Unicorn International Securities Victorious vs. G.O.B….
    In January 2016, the Supreme Court ordered GOB to pay nine million dollars in compensation to principals of Titan International Securities for an unlawful raid and seizure. In September 2014, [...]

    ….Damages to Be Assessed in the Millions
    Now that the Supreme Court has ruled that the violations did take place, the issue of quantum of damages will be dealt with. Young says that his client will certainly [...]

    Froyla Tzalam, the New Chair of APAMO
    There is a new chairperson to APAMO, the Association of Protected Areas Management Organizations. Over the weekend, Froyla T’zalam was elected to head the umbrella organization of NGOs.  Tzalam is [...]

    Sotz Family Furious As Charge against Policemen Is Downgraded
    On Friday, charges against two police constables were downgraded from murder to manslaughter. PCs Hallet King and Leonard Nunez were accused of killing eighteen year old Hilberto Sotz, while he [...]

    Sotz Family Send Out a Plea for Justice
    Sotz killing prompted riots on Caye Caulker and the family believes that the wheels of justice are not turning. The two cops were also granted bail of two thousand dollars [...]

    Sports: Football, Basketball, Cricket & the Strong Man Competition
    Good evening, I’m James Adderly and this is Sports Monday.   It was always going to be a tense affair inside the   MCC Grounds for Game 2 of the [...]

    CTV3

    Osmar Sabido Sentencing Adjourned
    Many of you may be aware of the case of Christie Carrasco, a young mother who was stabbed to death over five years ago in what many believed to be case of domestic abuse as her then boyfriend was indicted for her murder. Just one month ago the case against Osmar Sabido, who was Carrasco’s boyfriend at the time of her death commenced, where he claimed self-defense. The case against Sabido concluded on the 23rd of March and a verdict was to be handed down today, the 18th of April but the family and friends of Christie received the news that the ruling was moved to a later date. Today when we spoke to Mark Chavaria, uncle of Christie Carrasco, he told us that the entire family is ready to receive closure on the death of their loved one and although the family is hoping for a guilty verdict, Chavaria told us that they are leaving it all up to the law.

    Resident Of San Jose Village Concerned About Constant Altercation
    A dispute between two rival groups in the village of San Jose in the Orange Walk District has been causing havoc with the residents. According to residents, the problem, which has been ongoing for several months, is between the owner of one of the local stores in the village and a group of local boys. Today we spoke to one of the residents of the area, Feliciana Pot, who told us that the problem is getting out of control and she is afraid to step out of her front door in fear that a brawl might break out and she might get injured in the process. Feliciana Pot- Villager: “El problema es que el Chino que vive aquí enfrente tiene problemas con un grupo de muchachos pero yo no estoy a favor de ellos ni del otro, mi problema mío es de que cuando ellos tienen problema aquí me quiebran mucha botella, me tirotean la casa con piedras y yo no tengo problemas con nadie yo quiero ver si la policía o el jefe de policía haga algo porque esto no puede seguir pasando. Yo quiero como aldeana que soy y como vecino yo soy la más afectada y yo quiero que este problema la ley lo tome enserio y que tiene que para porque no pueden permitir esto porque después va a ver muerte como al igual vaya quedando como Belice pero lo que dice el inspector dice que tiene que morir alguien para que este problema se termine y yo pienso que ellos deben de evitar esto, es mejor prevenir que lamentar.”

    CFZ Security Guard Reportedly Attacked While On Duty
    A security guard is lucky to be alive tonight after it is believed he foiled a robbery in the Corozal Commercial Free Zone. While the information reaching our newsroom has not been confirmed by police or the management of the Free Zone since they are both being tight lipped, reliable sources say that the security guard was doing his rounds at the zone when he observed two persons acting suspiciously. The men were seen in the back area of one of the major stores in the free zone. We understand that the security guard radioed his head station for assistance. But before help arrived the security guard was approached by the two individuals. Right after two more men joined them and that is when the security guard was attacked and stabbed on the left shoulder.

    Atlantic Basin Hurricane Season Forecast 2016
    The Atlantic Basin Hurricane Season forecast for 2016 has been issued by the Colorado State University with the aim of informing the general public of how active the upcoming hurricane season is expected to be. The forecasts are based on global oceanic and atmospheric conditions that were observed in the past years and provide meaningful information concerning similar trends or patterns of hurricane seasons that are likely to occur in the upcoming seasons. In the report, it stated that for this year, it calls for a total of twelve named storms, five hurricanes and two major hurricanes. The Atlantic Basin Hurricane Season will have an average level of hurricane activity and according to the forecasters, it is anticipated that the El Niño will change into either neutral of La Niña conditions when the hurricane season is at its peak. When it comes to Belize, the figures show that there is a 33 percent chance that one or more storms will hit approximately fifty miles away from the country with only a 6 percent chance of a major hurricane approaching nearby. The report also makes mention that there is a thirty nine percent possibility that a named storm will enter Belize at approximately one hundred miles away resulting in an eighteen percent chance that a hurricane can hit that close.

    Baird's Tapir Knocked Down At Phillip Goldson Highway
    Over the weekend we received a report concerning a Baird’s tapir that was knocked down on miles eighty nine and ninety on the Philip Goldson Highway. Due to the fact that the tapir is considered as Belize’s national animal, it raised many concerns and raging feedback from many Belizeans as the animal was found near some bushes partially mutilated. When we spoke earlier this evening with the Wildlife Program Officer from the Belize Forest Department, he told us about the incident. Edgar Correa – Wildlife Program Officer, Forestry: “Yesterday morning I received a message through and informed me that a tapir was knocked down close to the border immediately I contacted our partners at the zoo to see if they can assist us in the removal, nevertheless, due to the area the zoo was able to reach here but in the evening and by the time the zoo member arrived by the location and the tapir was within the area which seems to have been slaughtered meaning that someone on the area by the vicinity removed the four leg from the tapir.”

    Three Detained For Drug Offences
    As the Orange Walk Police Formation continues to carry out their routine patrols here in the north in an effort to combat criminal activities, they were able to make a number of arrests over the weekend. On Saturday at about 10:20 p.m. authorities visited the home of Carlos Smith and Erlinda Sanchez with the intention of conducting a search at the residence. The search resulted in the discovery of a red plastic container that was hidden in the sofa which contained two marijuana plants. Both Smith and Sanchez were charged with ‘Cultivation of drugs’ and ‘Possession of Controlled Drugs’.

    Another Firearm Confiscated By Orange Walk Police
    Members of the Orange Walk Police Formation conducted several patrols and searches in different areas throughout the Orange Walk District over the weekend which resulted in the confiscation of two firearms. Since no one was in the area at the time of the discovery, the weapons were taken into police custody. Selvin Tillett – Superintendent of Police: “On Friday the 15th at 6:45pm Orange Walk Police conducted a search in an open lot at Savannah Street and upon moving a piece of log located on the western side of the log a black piece of cloth was found, inside the cloth was a chrome in color Tyrus .45 ACP caliber s/n R001649 along with an extended magazine containing no rounds while the search was conducted no one was in the immediate area, the firearm was taken to the Orange Walk police station and labelled as found property.”

    LOVE FM

    City Goes on Lockdown Following Gang Leader’s Murder
    The news of the murder of Gerald ‘Shiny’ Tillett spread around the country late Saturday night and led the police to be on high alert for the chance of any possible retaliation. The hours that would follow Tillett’s murder had the authorities in the old capital, led by Assistant Commissioner of Police Chester Williams, taking […]

    Peacemaker Dies in Caye Caulker Bar
    29-year-old, Leon Gordon is dead following an altercation at a bar establishment in Caye Caulker Village, Belize District. The circumstances that led to the fatal stabbing are yet to be ascertained but reports reaching Love News are that the confrontation involved two men from Belize City known to be gang affiliates. The incident occurred at […]

    Gunshots Break Silence in Biscayne Village; one man injured
    There were two separate shootings that occurred in Rural Belize Distict over the weekend. The first one occurred in Biscayne Village at miles 26 ¾ miles on the Phillip Goldson Highway. The victim was thirty four year old David Richard Taylor. Taylor reported to police that an unknown vehicle came into his yard and open […]

    Marage Road Shooting Leaves Woman Traumatized
    The second shooting occurred on Marage Road in Ladyville. It occurred at the home of forty six year old Cynthia Lozano at around 2:50 on Saturday morning Lozano told Police she heard someone at the door and minutes later she heard several gunshots. Inspector Juanito Cocom Officer in Command of Ladyville Precinct gave the media […]

    Trio of Guatemalans Detained for Several Offences
    Three Guatemalans have been captured in the southern part of the Chiquibul Forest through Joint Forces Unit located at the Ceibo Chico Conservation Post. On Saturday April 16, the three men were found in jungle camps near one of the Ceibo Chico creeks. At the camp Joint Forces personnel found several plastic bags containing what […]

    EMS’ Manager Steals to Provide for Family
    Thirty-one year old Sergio Patt, the former manager of the Express Mail section of Belize Postal Service, charged with six counts of theft of money amounting to twenty thousand six hundred and ten dollars pled guilty to the charges when he appeared today before Magistrate, Carlon Mendoza. Patt said he stole the money because he […]

    Froyla Now Chairs APAMO
    Froyla Tzalam, the Executive Director of the Sarstoon Temash Institute for Indigenous Management, SATIIM has been elected as the Chairperson of Association of Protected Areas Management Organizations, APAMO. This past weekend, APAMO held its eight annual general meeting under the theme, “Coming together, sharing together, working together, succeeding together. Guest speaker was the Chief Executive […]

    Beyond the Title of Gang Leader; Impact of Shiney’s Death
    With Gerald ‘Shiny’ Tillett dead, friends and family are in mourning, citizens are on alert and police officers have amped their patrols, checkpoints and preventative measures. Dianne Finnegan who works with the Youth Apprenticeship Program spoke to Love News on the impact of Tillett’s death. DIANNE FINNEGAN “I think it’s the 20th that Pinky had […]

    Nurse Wins 1/4 Million in Fantasy 5 Lottery
    A nurse at the Karl Heusner Memorial Hospital collected two hundred and sixty three thousand dollars this morning after she had purchased the winning Fantasy 5 lottery ticket. Judith Savery was at work when her husband called her with the good news. JUDITH SAVERY “I bought my ticket in my neighborhood. They are special numbers […]

    Lottery Machine to Be Assessed for Glitches
    Sunday, April 4 saw the avid Boledo buyers quite upset after a malfunction occurred with the ping pong machine. Today, we got a first-hand look at that very same machine and were given a demonstration of how it works. The balls are popped up to its cylinder via compressed air and so the only job […]

    PlusTV

    BNTU Campaign “Stand Up For Belize”
    Thousands of teachers converged on the border town of Benque Viejo on Firiday 15 April to discuss the Belize Guatemala referendum. On this day, the Belize National Teachers Union launched their “Stand Up for Belize” campaign. The two main speakers were Minister of Foreign Affairs Wilfred Elrington a...

    Policemen’s charges in Hilberto Sotz case reduced
    Back in June 2016, police had initially charged two of their own officers posted on Caye Caulker with murder, for allegedly beating 18 year old Hilberto Sotz to death while in their custody. Today, after 10 months on remand for murder, a directive from the Office of the Director of Public Prosecutio...

    Accused in alleged murder conspiracy allowed to leave country
    Korean national businesswoman, Hyang Chong Park, who was granted Supreme Court bail in the sum of $75,000 with stringent conditions after being charged in the plot to kill four persons in Belize, allegedly masterminded by Bradley Paumen, successfully applied to the Supreme Court on Thursday for perm...

    Accused teenage murderer to stand trial
    40 year old Edward Usher of Mayflower Street was shot dead on his doorsteps in broad daylight a year ago this week. The young man accused of pulling the trigger, Percival Pilgrim, will now stand trial for that murder after a preliminary inquiry concluded today. Without challenge, Senior Magistrate S...

    More land complaints from Valley of Peace residents
    Over 22 families met at the village community center in Valley of Peace today. The meeting was arranged by a village councilor and the chairman of the village lots committee to address some of the land issues the residents have been dealing with in that community. The current land dispute is over s...

    The family of Yolanda Valencia wins civil suit against Deputy ComPol Miguel Segura
    Vendor of San Jose Succotz, Yolanda Valencia, died in August of 2014 when her taxi driven by Yanie Cu was involved in a collision with the vehicle belonging to Deputy Commissioner of Police Miguel Segura. Segura was found to be drunk and his behavior at the scene was captured on video and prompted ...

    $2 million to clean up silting at Haulover Creek
    We have reported on the silting near the Bliss Center on Southern Foreshore, which affects both fishermen and the water taxi companies which make their living in that area. On Wednesday, Belize City Mayor Darrell Bradley said that all relevant agencies of Government – from the Port Authority to NICH...

    Burglar made off with gun and jewelry
    We reported on Monday about the aggravated burglary which occurred at a home in Camalote Village. Police have today issued an official report on the matter saying that the owner of the home , while he was at his ranch on the Hummingbird Highway, received a call from his maid, who reported that she ...

    Over $20,000 disappears from Post Office
    Belize City police are seeking a Post Office cashier as they investigate the disappearance of over twenty thousand dollars. On February 24, a supervisor of Belize Postal Service reported that sometime between the months of July and December 2015; $20,610.00 were stolen from the Post Office Express M...

    Georgeville man dead; was it an accident?
    Yesterday, according to a police report, 53 year old Earl Tillett died as a result of a gunshot injury to his jaw which he sustained as he tripped and fell and accidentally pulled the trigger, shooting himself in the jaw. According to a police report issued today, police were alerted to the inciden...

    The Reporter

    Shiny murdered in Griga!
    George Street gang leader, Gerald “Shiny” Tillett was shot dead at around 7:00 on Saturday night in Dangriga. The incident happened as Tillett and a group of men socialized at Wadani’s Shed on Saint Vincent Street. Three other persons were shot, as well as Tillett’s alleged murderer, Nicholas Swazo. Police say when Swazo opened fire and struck Tillett; David Rodriguez, 46; and Carlos Sharp, 37; another man, whose identity is being protected, pulled out his licensed firearm and shot Swazo. Tillett suffered a bullet wound to his temple, while Rodriguez, a businessman of Magoon Street, Dangriga, was struck to the center of the chest. He is in a critical condition. Sharp, a manager of Pomona, Stann Creek District, also suffered a gunshot wound to the chest, but he was treated and released. Swaso, who was shot to the upper right and lower left side of the back, is in a stable condition under police guard in the Western Regional Hospital. Police say he will be charged with Tillett’s murder and with the attempted murder of Rodriguez and Sharp as soon as he is released from the hospital. Police say Swazo, originally from Dangriga, moved to Belize City a couple years ago but continued to frequent Dangriga.

    Breaking Belize NewsPJ

    Ex-postal manager pleads guilty to theft charges
    San Jose, Orange Walk resident 31 year old Sergio Patt, the former manager of the Express Mail section of Belize Postal Service, was sent to jail this morning after pleading guilty to stealing from his former employers. Charged with 6 counts of theft of money amounting […]

    Two shootings in Ladyville leaves one injured
    Businesswoman of Marage Road in Ladyville Village, Cynthia Lozano, reported to police that on Saturday morning around 2:50, she was sleeping when she heard loud noises coming from the front door of her house. Lozano said the noises sounded like someone was kicking down […]

    Boat engine stolen in Placencia
    A Placencia Village fisherman, Leopold Leslie, 48, reported to police yesterday afternoon that his 60 horse power boat engine had been stolen. The Yamaha brand engine valued at $12,625, was stolen off Leslie’s 23 foot skiff which was docked near the Municipal Pier. Police […]

    Duo to be charged for weed found in SUV
    Two persons are pending charges after being detained on Friday morning for cannabis found inside an SUV they were traveling in. At around 5:50 a.m., a grey SUV going in the direction of Belize City from Orange Walk, was stopped and searched by police […]

    Security Guard’s motorcycle stolen in Belmopan
    A motorcycle owned00 p.m. on Friday, he parked his 2012 Meilun motorcycle in the […]

    Police take gun and drugs off the street in weekend searches
    Police searches in four municipalities over the weekend, yielded a total of 2.5 pounds of cannabis, 4.9 grams of powdered cocaine, 5.6 grams of crack and a firearm, which were all deposited as ‘found property’. On Friday night in Orange Walk, police searched an […]

    Violence erupts with two murders and a string of weekend shootings
    It was a bloody weekend in Belize City, triggered by the murder of George Street gang leader, Gerald “Shiney” Tillet, on Saturday night in Dangriga. Following Tillet’s murder there were a string of shootings across Belize City, one of which resulted in the death […]

    Briceno shaking up and shaking out the Old Guard
    Since taking over as the leader of the People’s United Party (PUP) a little over two months ago, John Briceno has set out to ensure things don’t end for him the way it did in his first stint as leader. Briceno took over a fractured party, consumed with dissent and dysfunction. Over the last few weeks, though, Briceno has set down a path that could either consolidate the PUP’s affairs or send it even deeper into the political abyss it has found itself in since 2008. Briceno has decided that in order for the PUP to move forward he needs to shake things up and shake out the old guard.

    Blogs

    Sunday Funday at the Truck Stop, Ambergris Caye
    Sunday afternoon on Ambergris Caye. A little music, some food and a giant waffle cone of delicious ice cream, lots of friends and more. The Truck Stop is where it’s at. PLUS, “Sunday Funday at the Truck Stop” is a title so perfect when set to the tune of 1975’s disco classic (others might say train wreck) “Car Wash”. It was the perfect day for ice cream AND the new misting stations! Hot and humid coming over the bridge north to Truck Stop. I arrived just as the pig was coming off the spit. And the Cornhole tournament was about to start. Sign-up begins at 1:30pm on Sundays and there are prizes for winning (like First place = $100 bar tab) and for the grooviest team name.

    Pineapple chicken in a Pineapple Bowl
    The Bare Pantry Show

    Belize Tourism Trending According to Latest Figures
    New data published by the Belize Tourism Board show that the country is becoming more popular than ever for foreign visitors. Tourist visits in January 2016 were up 24% year-over-year while February saw an 18.4% increase over the year before. The first two months of 2016 set a new record with more than 75,000 tourist visits, the highest number ever reported for that period. March 2016 continued these impressive gains with more than 43,000 visitors in that month alone, a more than 10% increase year-over-year and a new record for the month. The 43,065 visitors in March is the highest number of air travelers to visit the country in a single month.

    Pool Project: Week Five
    Most of the activity this week can be summed up in one word: rendering. This is the process of putting a smooth, final coat of cement on the walls, beams, and columns. This process is slow going and requires a deft hand to make the cement as smooth as possible. In a way, it's almost an art form. Fortunately for us, the three or four guys on the crew that are doing this work are masters. In this shot, you can see the final coat on the column and the rough coat on the wall that still needs to be smoothed. This is the north facing wall of our new hallway. Rendering is done on the exterior; the interior awaits. After that, the glass block will be installed in the opening you see.

    International Sourcesizz

    US releases 2015 human rights report
    On Wednesday, the US State Department released its 2015 Country Reports on Human Rights Practices, which include a number of countries in the Caribbean region. Speaking to reporters Secretary of State John Kerry emphasised that the human rights standards referred to the reports are universal standards. On Belize, the most important human rights abuses included the use of excessive force by security forces (especially the police), lengthy pretrial detention, and harassment and threats based on sexual orientation or gender identity. Other human rights problems included corruption by officials, domestic violence, discrimination against women, sexual abuse of children, trafficking in persons, and child labour. The government occasionally ignored reports of police abuses, delayed action, failed to take disciplinary action, or transferred accused officers to other areas within their department. The law provides criminal penalties for corruption by officials, but the government did not implement the law effectively, and officials sometimes engaged in corrupt practices. The World Bank’s worldwide governance indicators reflected that corruption continued to be a problem.

    Go Adventuring in Ambergris Caye
    Just a ten-minute flight from the capital, with lush wilderness and serene lodges, Belize’s largest island feels a world away. There are plenty of hidden gems among restaurants in the area: For lunch, Caprice does a fabulous Belizean fish soup called Cha Chac. If you’re looking to hear some local music, go to Black and White Bar for some Garifuna drumming and the hudut (a local Garifuna fish soup). For a day trip, Caye Caulker is the best nearby island to visit. You can get to it easily by boat (about 25 minutes) or Tropic Air (it’s a five-minute flight!). It's how San Pedro used to be: sandy streets and a really laid-back atmosphere. My favorite snorkeling spot is just off the barrier reef at Tranquility Bay Resort. The water is super-clear, and it’s never crowded. Eels, sea urchins, and lobsters all congregate here.

    Guyana preparing to ban Styrofoam in 2016
    If all goes according to plan, it will be illegal to import or use Styrofoam, popularly used in the food service industry, from the beginning of next year. In its thrust to promote a green economy and environment, government is moving ahead with plans to ban the importation and use of closed-cell extruded polystyrene foam from January 1, 2016. The Department of Natural Resources and the Environment has begun implementing a series of measures to address waste management and to promote the utilisation of biodegradable materials. The proposed Expanded Polystyrene Ban Regulation is being finalized before the effective date to ensure the ban is legally reinforced.

    5 dead as historic, 20-inch rain swamps Houston area
    Drenching rain, which brought flash floods to much of eastern and southern Texas on Sunday and Monday, deluged Houston, killing five and leading to scores of water rescues. Harris County Judge Ed Emmett said two people died in a vehicle that ignored barricades at a freeway underpass. He said traffic cameras recorded the vehicle going around the blockade and head into the water. The vehicle didn’t make it through. Two deaths reported earlier Monday included one man found inside a truck that that drove into high water on a freeway service road. Harris County Precinct Sgt. Herbert Martinez says crews monitoring the high water on the road saw the man in the 18-wheeler truck drive directly into the water. He says it’s possible the driver may have suffered some kind of medical emergency.

    Houston's flood of biblical proportions, in photos
    Heavy rains, nearing 2 feet in some places, swamped the Houston, Texas metro area, causing significant flooding and forcing evacuations. By 10:30 a.m. local time on Monday morning, the city of Houston had requested disaster declaration. As flood waters have covered roadways and more than 1,000 homes have reportedly flooded, authorities have responded to more than 1,200 flooding emergency — and that number is rising along with the flood waters.

    Finding the skeletons deep within the Belize cave
    HOW the Mayans got huge clay pots into the depths of a cave without damaging them is one of life's mysteries - not unlike the Nazca lines or Stonehenge. I mean, it's not like they had bubble wrap to protect them. Yet they managed to get these pots through seemingly impossible gaps to get to a ceremonial site where they would help their loved ones move from the underworld to the heavens. A cracked pot was no good - the gods would not have been pleased. Actun Tunichil Muknal is just outside San Ignacio in Belize. When it's 38C and the humidity is through the roof, doesn't a cave sound like the perfect antidote? But it's not for the faint-hearted. More than a dozen skeletons, believed to be sacrifices to the gods, have been discovered there, with at least six visible during the tour. Both adults and children died in this cave with pots used to create smoke and steam to help provide safe passage for their spirits from the underworld to the heavens.

    CDC issues travel notice for Belize due to Zika
    The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) issued a travel notice for Belize after recent reports of local transmission of Zika virus in the Central American country. Local mosquito transmission means that mosquitoes in the area are infected with Zika virus and are spreading it to people. Travelers to areas with cases of Zika virus infection are at risk of being infected with the Zika virus. Mosquitoes that spread Zika are aggressive daytime biters. They also bite at night. There is no vaccine or medicine for Zika virus. The best way to avoid Zika virus infection is to prevent mosquito bites.

    New set up for Jazz Fest 2016 in New Orleans
    The countdown is on to the start of Jazz Fest 2016. FOX 8 checked in at the Fair Grounds to see what's new this year. Earth movers, cherry pickers and ATV's help build the magical city that comes to life at the Fair Grounds. Quint Davis said, ‘Hey it's Jazz Fest.” The New Orleans Jazz and Heritage Festival Producer is excited that it continues growing and getting better. He said, “There's really something for everyone at the highest level.” He's especially excited about the growing cultural exchange area. “Almost any Caribbean nation relates to New Orleans," Davis said. "They have carnival, they have rhythm, they have parades. So this year it's Belize that's featured.” Also this year are special tributes honor Allen Toussaint and B.B. King. “We're facing some major losses this year to our family," Davis said. "B.B. is in a portrait now on the outside of the Blues tent and there will be a jazz funeral here for Allen on Saturday the 23rd.

    EU contributes Euro14 million to catastrophe risk insurance for Caribbean and Central America
    The European Commission and the World Bank on Friday signed a Euro 14 million agreement to be executed by the Multi-Donor Trust Fund (MDTF) to facilitate access to low cost, high quality catastrophe risk insurance for the governments of Central American countries and the Dominican Republic. This contribution will support these countries become formal members of CCRIF SPC, formerly the Caribbean Catastrophe Risk Insurance Facility, a multi-country program that allows its current 17 members to pool risk and access disaster insurance coverage at low cost, and better manage and finance disaster risk. Friday’s agreement was signed by Neven Mimica, European Union commissioner for international cooperation and development, and Jorge Familiar, World Bank vice president for Latin America and the Caribbean. Milo Pearson, chairman of CCRIF SPC. Ivan Acosta, minister of finance and public credit of Nicaragua, and Wilfredo Cerrato, finance secretary of Honduras, also participated in the signing ceremony.

    Cuba to host Caribbean summit
    The seventh summit of the Association of Caribbean States (ACS) will take place on June 4 in the Cuban capital of Havana, said the organization’s secretary general Alfonso Munera. Munera, who paid a working visit to Cuba last Wednesday, met with Cuba’s first deputy foreign minister Marcelino Medina on the drafting of documents for the summit. The two officials addressed the performance of the ACS and the role of Cuba while chairing the Association´s Council of Ministers, according to the Cuban foreign ministry.

    Videos

  • Raw Sewage Pumped into Haulover Creek Causes Public Uproar , 5min.

  • Pedro’s Hotel BELIZE, 2min.

  • Belize Trip Summary 2016, 4min.

  • Diving Belize 2016, 3min.

  • SAN PEDRO, BELIZE APRIL 2016, 3.5min.

  • Half Moon Caye Diving - Belize 2016, 11min.

  • 67seconds flying over the Blue Hole, Belize, 1.5min. Flying over the Blue Hole in Belize is a ones in a lifetime experience which leaves you with stunning views of countless shades of blue.

  • 9 Cosa vedere nel viaggio in Belize Caye Caulker Pistolozzi Marco Avventure nel Mondo, 10min. http://marcopistolozzi.blogspot.com Caye Caulker è' un atollo caraibico, situato a pochi passi dai 300 chilometri della barriera corallina che fronteggia il Belize. Asfalto e cemento sono banditi "per legge". Caye Caulker is ' a Caribbean atoll, located a few steps from the 300 kilometers of the reef fronting Belize. Asphalt and concrete are bandits "by law ". Caye Caulker es ' un atolón del Caribe , que se encuentra a pocos pasos de los 300 kilómetros de arrecife de Belice frente . Asfalto y hormigón son bandidos " por ley"

  • The Beer Diaries World Tour: Belize - The Maya, 16min. The Beer Diaries is proud to present The Beer Diaries World Tour: Belize, a series dedicated to using beer as an introduction to history, culture and the geo-political state of countries around the world. In this episode, host Mike Mann and his team visit the Maya ruins, Xunantunich and Cahel Pech, in the heart of San Ignacio. Andy Bahadurs, Maya expert, explains the prominence and decline of these sites, along with the significance of the various ceremonies of the people who lived there.

  • Organic Farming & Dining at Chaa Creek, 3min. Our organic farming features farm to table dining at Belize's luxury resort Chaa Creek, supplying its Mariposa Restaurant with fresh produce on a daily basis.

  • Vlogging My Belize Proposal- Nurse Shark Crashes Proposal Moment, 14min.

  • Ziplining in Belize, 3vmin.

  • Pan American Highway, Episode 7 Belize Del 1, 13min.

  • Belize, 8min.

  • Belize, 6min. A little taste of our trip.

  • BPP'S PATRICK ROGERS DISCUSSES THE ICJ, COMPROMIS & GUATEMALA'S CLAIM TO BELIZE (PT. 1), 31min. The featured interview here on Belizean Legends highlights the work of the Belize Progressive Party's (BPP) political leader, Patrick Rogers, who has emerged today as a progressive voice on the Belize political scene after many years as an activist for many Belizean causes on the ground in Belize. Rogers, who is also an astute Belizean historian with credible historical facts to drive home his political views on the Belize / Guatemalan Dispute, spoke with Belizean Legends producer and host, Bilall Morris, about the insidious and treacherous Compromis signed by the Belize and Guatemalan governments in December of 2008, without the consent of the Belizean people, to take the aged old Belize / Guatemalan Dispute to the International Court of Justice (ICJ).

    April 18, 2016


    FOR TODAY'S BELIZE WEATHER, CLICK HERE

    Click for our Daily Tropical Weather Report.

    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

    Letter to the Editor: No better place to celebrate a birthday
    Dear Editor: We purchased a home in San Pedro’s San Telmo neighborhood in 2011. Although we are not normally impulse buyers, we made our decision after spending only a week in Belize. Despite having almost completely abandoned prudent due diligence with respect to the purchase, nevertheless we are veteran travelers having experienced many countries and cultures around the world. We never doubted that we had stumbled upon a “good thing”. Certainly, we recognized that San Pedro is an amazing place with many attractive features but, more than anything, we were impressed with how genuine and friendly the people of Ambergris Caye can be. A tourist might not take particular notice of this, but there is little of greater importance to a traveler. Last September we brought a friend to Belize with us to celebrate his 40th birthday. Our friend is suffering from a debilitating brain tumor that has compromised the left side of his body. He is still in the process of recovering his movement, life and confidence. We recognized that his polite declines to our previous invitations to join us, in San Pedro, were manifestations of his justifiable angst.

    Letter to the Editor: Disappointing Traffic Conditions
    Dear Editor, We have recently spent one month in San Pedro. This was our 15th trip over the past 12 years. We have loved our visits over the years and have become friends with many locals and expats. We have supported an elementary school and sponsored a high school student for her four year term. Many friends and family have accompanied us over these years. We have been increasingly disappointed with the traffic over the years, but this year in particular was the worst. One morning, while in town, we tried to pass a van parked in a red zone (no parking) on a side street and a truck came around the corner too wide and too fast and we swerved to avoid a head on collision resulting in our side swiping the illegally parked van. The driver of the van started a scream fest over the minor scratch to his vehicle while the truck kept going. We were brow-beaten into paying cash to the van driver for his repairs (far greater than the damage) to keep the peace. As you can imagine, this left a very sour taste, and we avoided going downtown as much as possible following this. It had created doubt in our minds as to whether we will return. We discussed this with other tourists staying at our resort and the conclusion by all of them was that this was the last year they would return also.

    Wolfe’s Woofer: Taste This
    “Mr. Dennis, will you have a beer with us?” “Oh, no thanks, Augusto,” I said. “It’s too early for me to have a beer. I’m going to drink my coffee and read my book.” “If you get thirsty come over and join us,” Luis said. “Mario is supposed to come and meet us when he gets back from the doctor.” “Thanks.” It was a beautiful mid-morning Saturday on the deck at the Holiday Hotel. My friends at the next table were obviously still carrying on the party from Friday night. Augusto said, “Luis, you left the disco at about four o’clock and I didn’t see you again until just now. What happened to you?”

    Police Report
    *On Thursday, April 7th at 1:15PM, San Pedro Police conducted a search in an apartment in the DFC area, San Pedro Town. Present at the time of the search were Alex and Christian Espat, both 20 years old of San Juan Area, along with four minors of DFC area. The search resulted in the discovery of 23.3 grams of Cocaine and 2.9 grams of Cannabis. All persons present at the time of the search were detained and escorted to the San Pedro Police station with the Cocaine and Cannabis. All were arrested and charged for the offence of “Possession of Controlled Drugs” and “Drug Trafficking”.
    *On Friday, April 8th at around 9:30PM while on mobile patrol on Caribeña Street, San Pedro Town police observed a yellow taxi van which was being driven at the time by 40-year-old Emmanuel Jesus Chi, taxi driver of San Marcus Area, who almost collided into a golf cart and drove off in a reckless manner. As a result, the taxi was pursued and caught on Barrier Reef Drive where Chi appeared to be under the influence of alcohol. Upon searching inside the van, police found a beer bottle which was half full. Police requested Chi to provide a blood or urine specimen for analysis which he provided. On Saturday, April 9th at 9PM police arrested and charged Emmanuel Jesus Chi for the offence of “Drove Motor Vehicle with Alcohol Concentration above the Prescribed Limit”.

    Doctor Love: Alone As Usual
    Dear Doctor Love, Fear of rejection is ruining my life. I am a twenty-nine year-old man who has had very few dates in his life. I did not go to my senior prom and I have never had a girlfriend. Every weekend seems to find me more alone than ever or out with the guys that I know. I’m sure that some people think I’m gay but nothing is farther from the truth. I am simply terrified of women. I may want them badly but the idea of being rejected for a date or just because she does not like me is terrifying. I am too fearful to ever ask a woman to dance. I don’t know how to hold a conversation with a woman. What would I talk about? I have had some dates but it was always with women who showed they were interested in me first. After that I could handle it. One thing I have learned is to approach only women who are alone or at most with one other friend. I avoid women in large groups because my experience is that they will turn on you like a pack of wild dogs and rip you to shreds. I don’t know why this happens but I have experienced it. I need help. /s/ Alone As Usual

    Misc Belizean Sourcesmzz

    Dead tapir on Northern Highway
    his is a crying shame. Here is our national animal, our great Tapir, laying dead between miles 89/90 on the Philip Goldson Highway (formerly Northern Highway). Due to our dry conditions, these tapirs will find their fresh water source at Four Mile Lagoon.

    SHABBAZZ, OH SHABAZZ: YOU ARE REMEMBERED ALWAYS!
    A most blessed remembrance for my dear Muslim brother, friend, activist, and mentor, Ismail Omar Shabazz. Here he was celebrating his 75 birthday, and yours truly visited him in Belize, walked right in on the celebration, and was able to meet his precious grandchildren and great-grandchildren. It was a moment of rich family celebration of his many years as a Belizean historian, his life which he truly cherished, a staunch opponent against the Guatemalan Claim, and a Belizean who loved his people and country. We later spoke for hours on Belizean affairs, and it was always a learning experience at his home, the University of Consciousness. He lives in me!

    MY BELIZEAN LEGEND FOR LIFE: SUMAIYA MORRIS!
    In my late years today, it is most important that that my dear wife Sumaiya Morris be honored more than any other Belizean legend that have been covered here on this documentary series called Belizean Legends. She has stood with me through it all, and understood all the reasons why this struggle here is waged. She is my comfort and motivation in it all. There is nothing more precious than her companionship and support. She is legend!

    Bullet Tree village cleanup
    Bullet Tree village is a member of the Bi-national Watershed Alliance. Community members joined in cleaning the river in their community. Thanks to all the volunteers that made this activity possible.

    The Reporter

    FCD plans another surveillance flight to monitor illegal farming in Chiquibul
    Friends for Conservation and Development (FCD) is planning another aerial surveillance exercise to monitor the most recent level of incursions in the Chiquibul Reserve. FCD says agricultural encroachments started to appear in the forest after 1980 and increased leading up to 2000. The highest expansion occurred from 2004 to 2010, however, showing that almost 9,000 acres of land has been deforested. Projection models suggest that by the year 2050, a significant portion of the Chiquibul forest will be converted to agriculture, if no effective interventions are put in place. Aerial pictures have shown that Guatemalan farmers have started to slash and burn the southern portion of the forest because of its remoteness. Recent patrols, however, have resulted in the detention of Guatemalan intruders.

    Retaliatory shootings take place in Belize City following ‘Shiny’ Tillett’s murder in Dangriga
    Police have increased their patrols in Belize City following Saturday night’s shooting murder of George Street boss, Gerald “Shiny’ Tillett in Dangriga, and retaliatory shootings in Belize City. The latest victim is Kadeem Castillo, who was killed in Belize City hours after Tillett’s murder. Tillett was at a social event at a recreation centre on Saint Vincent Street in Dangriga at around 7:00 p.m. when someone approached him and opened fire on him. He was struck in the head and died while on the way to the Western Regional Hospital. The owner of the business, David Rodriguez, was treated and released with a gunshot wound to the right side of his chest. Another man, a tour guide, is in a critical condition with a gunshot wound to the centre of his chest. The gunman who was also injured, is receiving medical treatment under police guard.

    Earthquake hits Ecuador; hundreds killed
    A catastrophic earthquake that destroyed buildings in Ecuador on Saturday became far more devastating Sunday, when the death toll rose to 233. Another 1,500 people were injured, said Ricardo Peñaherrera of Quito’s emergency management office. The magnitude 7.8 earthquake hit Saturday night as it buckled homes and knocked out power in the city, Ecuador’s most populous, authorities said. Emergency officials recovered one body from the scene of a bridge collapse there. Vice President Jorge Glas had said earlier the death toll is expected to rise. A state of emergency is in effect for six provinces — Guayas, Manabi, Santo Domingo, Los Rios, Esmeraldas and Galapagos. Authorities urged those who left their homes in coastal areas to return after a tsunami alert was lifted.

    Breaking Belize NewsPJ

    Ariel Rosado Foundation holds bike ride for scholarships
    The annual Bike Ride in memory to the late Ariel Rosado and hosted by the Ariel Rosado Foundation took place on Saturday on the George Price Highway. The renamed Ariel Rosado Foundation was established to give life to future leaders of Belize, in memory […]

    Belize group hits back at U.S. over Venezuela “threat”
    The Belizean Organization for Solidarity with the Bolivarian Revolution says it opposes U.S. President Barack Obama’s March 3, 2016 extension of his decree declaring Venezuela an “Unusual and Extraordinary Threat to the United States”. According to the organization, the claims made in the decree […]

    Amandala defends headline in sex case
    Earlier this week a release came out of the National Committee for Families and Children (NCFC) in relation to the recent incidents of abuse against two girls. While expressing concern for the particular child, a 13 year old girl, who is said to have […]

    2016 hurricane season forecast released; average activity predicted
    The Atlantic Basin Seasonal Hurricane Prediction issued by Philip J. Klotzbach, Research Scientist, and William M. Gray, Professor Emeritus, at the Department of Atmospheric Science, Colorado State University, at the National Tropical Weather Conference, calls for 12 named storms, 5 hurricanes and 2 major […]

    One detained for “Shiney” murder; Belize City youth among those shot in retaliation
    Police have confirmed that one “person of interest” is in custody in Dangriga in relation to Saturday night’s murder of Gerald “Shiney” Tillett. That person is among those injured in the incident. Tillett was killed by a single gunshot wound to the head. The […]

    “Shiny” dead, three others injured; retaliations reported
    Reputed George Street Gang Boss Gerald “Shiney” Tillett is dead, killed by a single gunshot wound to the head on Saturday night. In reported retaliation, no less than seven shootings have been reported since last night. The shooting happened while he and two others were socializing at […]

    Belize City police on high alert following “Shiney” murder
    BBN Staff: Belize City police are on high alert following last night’s murder of George Street gang leader Gerald “Shiney” Tillet in Dangriga. There were a string of shootings reported mainly across the south side of the city in the wake of the news. Early reports to BBN […]

    Blogs

    Caye Caulker and Her New Beach are Looking Beautiful
    Thursday I cruised over to Caye Caulker with Island Dreams Tours. And…for some reason, it was my first stop in Caye Caulker for months. What the HECK have I been up to? Just 20 mins away, I had been gone for months and lots had changed. But the charm is there FOR SURE. We started by cruising down the leeward side of the island to the Split. On the north side, leeward, is a new business. I tried to get some pictures… The Lizard itself is undergoing some construction. There is a new mural. And what they are calling a “bistro” upstairs. Perhaps too fancy for the Split? A historically VERY laid back place – the old motto used to be “a sunny place for shady people”. And then the new beach!

    San Pedro Sunday morning: Covering ground for a good cause
    This morning was the second annual Autism Awareness 5K Walk/Run in San Pedro. Rose and I chose the walk option off the menu, out of deference for me being completely out of shape thanks to back-to-back surgeries in the past year or so. So Rose prepared for the 5K by rising early and running a 7K. I prepared by looking for my ancient running shoes, which I searched thoroughly for scorpions, lizards, spiders and other creatures who seek shelter in musty, dark places in the back of closets. The good news is, I found none of the above. But the shoes. Oh, the shoes! The bad news is . . . oh, wait . . . I told you earlier: I am terribly out of shape as far as humans go. The run/walk began in front of the Sandbar, the hostel/bar/pizza joint in Boca del Rio which seems to be making a habit out of civic generosity. If there is a good deed being done for San Pedro, you’ll likely see the Sandbar’s name attached to it somewhere. Seriously, a bottomless source of good works for the community.

    International Sourcesizz

    The turquoise water is un-Belize-able!
    YOU better Belize it. Un-Belize-able. The Belize jokes come thick and fast, and the cliche t-shirts sell just as quickly. While I may have resisted the Belize offerings, I have succumbed to a Guatever t-shirt in Guatemala - honestly, how could I resist? The "Guat's Up?" tops were almost as tempting. But, where was I? Oh yeah - blissing in Belize. Caye Caulker's got that chill vibe of Byron Bay before it became so touristy. I imagine it's similar across the Caribbean but a little more sleepy than, say Jamaica. Everyone speaks English and they take US dollars in all stores - one US is the equivalent of two Belize dollars. The British colony is still struggling with identity, with Guatemala and Mexico still fighting in the courts over territory. There's only 2000 people living on the island, though that can double with tourists in peak seasons. The locals - who will happily strike up a conversation with anyone - get around on bikes or golf buggies. But the real attraction of Caye Caulker is in the stunning turquoise Caribbean surrounding the island.

    Belize Tourism Off to Booming Start in 2016
    Belize is booming. The Caribbean destination is off to a blazing start in 2016, according to the latest numbers from the Belize Tourism Board. The country reported a 24 percent year-over-year increase in stayover visitors in January, followed by an 18.4 percent increase in stayover visitors in 2015. The increase was reflected in 7,416 visitors in January and 5,800 visitors in January, with overall totals of 38,274 arrivals in January, 37,624 arrivals in February and 43,063 arrivals in March. For the first quarter overall, the country reported a 16.9 percent increase in overnight tourist arrivals, making it the fastest-growing destination in the Caribbean in 2016.

    Longevity Summit brings latest health research to the valley
    A two-day Longevity Summit in Medford brought the latest health research on living longer to Rogue Valley residents this weekend. This is the second year of the longevity summit, and it’s grown quite a bit. More than 350 people heard from 20 speakers. The event aims to share the latest health headlines, and show people how they can add 5 to 20 quality years to their lives. “We distilled down 20 years of research into the best practices in terms of how people can lose weight, get rid of their headaches, get rid of their arthritis, work toward reversing diabetes, high blood pressure, sleep apnea, alzheimer’s, parkinson’s, et cetera,” Dr. Thaddeus Gala said. The event is also a fundraiser for a school program in Belize. Last year, enough money was donated to supply a children’s before and after-school program with food for the entire year. This year, they’ve already achieved that same goal, and are working to do even more.

    Videos

  • Belize 2016 | Highlight Video, 3min. Here are some highlights on the incredible trip 41 missionaries took to Belize April 1-9. Thanks to everyone who was a part of donating the over $16,000 that came in through the Easter Love Offering to fully fund all the construction projects in Punta Gorda and San Miguel! Your generosity is helping two churches reach more people in their town and village with the love of Christ!

  • Ambergris Caye Scuba Adventures, 3min. March 2016 - Ambergris Caye, Belize Shot with a GoPro 3 Silver and a Phantom 3 Advanced quadcopter in the second largest barrier reef on the planet.

  • Diving the Victoria Tunnel in Ambergris Caye Belize, 2min. Every dive is different, some have lots of fish, others amazing coral and sponges and sometimes you are just flying. Smooth, dark tunnels and just floating.

  • Dont Panic Dive, 1.5min. Ambergris Caye, Belize

  • Placencia - Belize 2015, 5min. Our trip to Placencia, Belize. We stayed at Laru Beya Resort - the nicest staff ever!

  • Ambassador Assad Shoman and the BNTU April 2016 on the Belize/Guatemala differendum Part 2, 12.5min. Brother Assad Shoman does his historical/political presentation at on the issue of the unjust and irritating issue by Guatemala on Belize.

  • Senior Year 2016: BELIZE, 4min.

  • Ambergios Caye, Belize April 2016, 4min.

  • ATV Belize, 11min. BUTTS UP TOURS in Belize City, Belize - ATV in the mud. So much fun, so much mud! Good thing we went tubing down the river through the caves to clean u

  • BLUE HOLE BELIZE FEB 2016, 8.5min. Buceo Realizado en el Gran Blue Hole, Belize Febrero 2016.

  • Mayan Ruins in Belize, 3min.

    April 17, 2016


    FOR TODAY'S BELIZE WEATHER, CLICK HERE

    Click for our Daily Tropical Weather Report.

    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

    Congratulations Catrachos Team
    Champions of the 2016 Mayor's and Minister's Cup! It ended in major controversy with a final score of 4-3, but Catrachos won the Mayor's & Minister's Cup Football Tournament. After the referee called offside on a penalty kick, Veterans protested, and eventually walked off and forfeited the final game of the tournament. Congratulations to Team Catrachos on their win.

    World ranked Laser Sailors Visit Belize Sailing School
    On Sunday, April 10, 2016, two vivacious and highly decorated Laser Sailors, Hanne Weaver, 20, and her brother Ted, 23, visited the Belize Sailing Center and provided inspirational training and racing for the school’s aspiring young Laser sailors. Among Hanne Weaver’s many accomplishments is winning the 2012 USA Junior Female Single-person-Dingy Championship at age 16. She currently ranks 3rd among US senior women Laser Radial sailors and is in a very strong position to make the 2020 Women’s US Olympic Laser sailing team. Hanne is putting off full-time college to pursue her Olympic goal; she is an assistant manager at a Seattle, Washington USA branch of West Marine, the large and prestigious US water sports outfitter and retailer. West Marine fully supports Hanne’s sailing ambitions and allows her time off to pursue them.

    Projects Abroad to conduct survey on alcohol and tobacco use in SP
    In an effort to keep the younger island population away the unhealthy influences of alcohol and tobacco abuse, Projects Abroad in Belize has initiated an action plan. This initiative will require community cooperation, and is already underway. According to Kaitlin McWhorter from the non-governmental organization (NGO) Projects Abroad, the idea is to go door-to-door, inquiring information related to alcohol and tobacco use in the community. The project aims to find out how often they are being used, and if there is a way to reduce or eliminate its abuse. The NGO is currently working on a community census to collect data on the use of these two common drugs in Ambergris Caye. The team plans to visit the schools on the island applying the same system of data survey. McWhorter indicated that from the information gathered, an action plan can then be implemented to prevent or lower the rate of usage among the youth on the island. She looks forward to working with the community, and hopes to get everyone’s support on this new project that seeks only the best for the island youth. The surveys are scheduled to start on Thursday, April 14th, and should run through Saturday, May 14th.

    BWG, The Phoenix, Canary Coves raises funds for new ECG machine
    Each month, the Blue Water Grill (BWG) restaurant along with its sister business The Phoenix Resort, raises funds to support different organizations in San Pedro. Last month, donations not only came from BWG and The Phoenix, but also from Canary Cove, who joined the initiative to raise money for an Electrocardiogram (ECG) machine for the Dr. Otto Rodriguez San Pedro Polyclinic II. During the month of March, BWG, The Phoenix and Canary Cove raised $8,920 to purchase the machine for the Polyclinic. The BWG intended to purchase the machine back in August 2015, however, other urgent clinic essentials took precedence. Spirometers, pulse oximeters and thermometers among other necessary supplies were donated instead. Now that funds have been raised for the ECG, the doctors and nurses at the clinic will be better able to take care of the community of San Pedro. The official handing over ceremony will be announced at a later date. BWG, The Phoenix, and Canary Cove would like to thank everyone for their donations and for making this possible.

    Businesses organize to address Mayor’s new delivery regulations
    On Monday, April 11th, the new regulation for delivery trucks began in downtown San Pedro. The project is an experiment by The San Pedro Town Council (SPTC) as a means to solve traffic congestion on the island. All large-vehicle deliveries have been barred from doing so after 7AM in the town core. Despite opposition to the pilot project, the SPTC began implementing the idea. Mayor Guerrero expects the new regulations to become a by-law in the coming months. “The project has been well received by residents. They feel relieved knowing their children will be safer on the streets when they go to school. We are also accommodating our tourists, who were having issues with the congestion in downtown,” said Guerrero. According to the Mayor, some businesses are cooperating with the new initiative of deliveries between 2AM and 7AM. However, not everyone in the business community is happy with the new regulation, despite recent clarifications. On Wednesday, April 13th, over 30 business owners met at the Lions Den for an in-depth discussion. The different stakeholders ranged from barge to hardware stores to the main super market owners in town. The matter is so serious that the group has sought legal advice concerning the situation. According to one of the participants, his legal adviser mentioned that no local authority can block access to public streets. Such a regulation must come from the Ministry of Transportation prior to being gazette at the Ministry in Central Government. In view of this, everyone at the meeting agreed on taking the legal approach as well.

    Kids for Belize fundraiser a success
    Island children with limited resources and who struggle for an education will once again benefit from Daryl’s ‘Kids of Belize’ fundraising program. For the past year and a half, Daryl Kennedy, the programs founder, has been raising funds to assist children with scholarships and even desks. The program has grown rapidly, to the point that even tertiary level students are benefiting from scholarships. As in the past, this year’s fundraising event brought an evening of great music; from Reggae to classics, supporters were entertained for hours. It all happened on Saturday, April 9th, at the Island Time Beach Bar in Southern Ambergris Caye. From 1PM until the bar closed, Kennedy and local musicians rocked the mic. The audience also indulged in the many delicious options from the menu, including roast pork. Some attendees declared it their favorite, and were double pleased that proceeds assisted a worthy cause.

    Misc Belizean Sourcesmzz

    Petition asking the Obama Administration to condemn Guatemala's aggressive encroachment into Belize
    Please sign the petition asking the Obama Administration to condemn Guatemala's aggressive encroachment into Belize. All you need to do is enter your first and last name and your email address. Then you need to go into your email and confirm so that your signature registers. Your name will remain anonymous on the site. If are using internet explorer as your browser, you may need to switch to Google Chrome or Firefox.

    District finals of the Bowen & Bowen National Spelling Bee
    The District finals of the Bowen & Bowen National Spelling Bee took place today at the CCC Auditorium. Coordinator of the Corozal House of Culture Debra Wilkes was honoured to be of service as a judge. Congratulations to all of the children who participated! First place winner is Miss Limeyrie Sosa of Our Lady of Guadalupe RC School, second place goes to Mr. Klever Lin of Calcutta Seventh Day Adventist School, and third place goes to Miss Roxannie Nah of Patchakan RC School. We wish them all of the very best at the National Spelling Bee in early June.

    Amandala

    Iris Myrtle Palacio vs Guardian and editor for libel
    The former Opposition People’s United Party (PUP) Secretary General, Iris Myrtle Palacio, has filed a lawsuit claiming that an article and accompanying cartoon published by The Guardian newspaper, the party organ of the governing United Democratic Party (UDP), were acts of libel against her. Both Palacio and the Guardian editor, Alfonso Noble, took the witness stand when the case came up this morning in the Supreme Court of Chief Justice Kenneth Benjamin. Just prior to the January 2015 bi-election in Cayo, December, 2014, The Guardian ran a story captioned “PUP Secretary General endorses the use of witchcraft in politics,” and the cartoon at the bottom of the page on which the article was printed contained a caricature of Palacio chopping off the head of a chicken, with the caption, “PUP Election Preparation.”

    Police exposes woman’s nakedness
    The naked body of a grieving mother, Emily Gabourel Chavarria of Ladyville, was exposed by police who went to her house to search for drugs and/or ammunition. Chavarria told Amandala today that at about 6:00 this morning, at her house in La Milpa Estate, Ladyville, she was getting ready to go to work when she heard a loud banging on the door and a voice from outside shouted, “ Police, open the door before we break it down.” Chavarria said she shouted at them, “Give me a break so I could put on my clothes.” She said that the banging was loud, so she went to open the door before they broke it down. Police, she said, barged into the house, and one of them pulled the towel from around her, exposing her body.

    Man, beaten, stabbed and left in drain to die, succumbs
    The Vernon family of Racoon Street, Belize City, is mourning the death of Anwar Vernon, 31, a laborer and the stepfather of two boys, 2 and 3 years old. He died at about 2:30 yesterday afternoon at the Karl Heusner Memorial Hospital, where he fought for his life for about 6 days after being attacked by unknown robbers who stabbed him and beat him in the head, then threw him into a drain on Racoon Street Extension, where he was found. On Wednesday morning, April 6, people walking on Racoon Street Extension saw him lying in the drain and called police, who went to the scene and saw Vernon battered, bleeding and unconscious. He was then rushed to the Karl Heusner Memorial Hospital, where he was taken to the Intensive Care Unit, where he battled for his life until yesterday evening, when he died of the injuries.

    DCP Miguel Segura’s civil lawsuit settled for $78,000
    The Deputy Commissioner of Police, Miguel Segura, collided into a car and as a result caused the death of Yolanda Consuelo Valencia in the early morning hours of August 16, 2014, on the George Price Highway near Mile 71. The 55-year-old Valencia was travelling as a passenger in a taxi when a government-owned Nissan Pathfinder that was being driven by Segura slammed into the taxi, killing Valencia on the spot. The driver of the taxi, Yanie Cu, suffered severe head and bodily injuries from which he has still not yet fully recovered. Segura has been criminally charged for the accident and his case is still making its way through the criminal justice system. Segura, who is still on interdiction from the Police Department, is facing manslaughter and other accident-related charges.

    2016 hurricane season forecast released
    You might think that an April forecast for the Atlantic Hurricane Season, which spans June to November each year, is way too early, but that’s not the case, especially since hurricanes are not the straight-jacket type. Ask Hurricane Alex, which emerged as an extra-tropical cyclone near the Bahamas on January 7, 2016. Notably, Hurricane Alex was the first Atlantic hurricane in January since Alice in 1955. So does an early hurricane make for a busy season? Not necessarily—or at least not according to today’s season prediction issued by the Colorado State University (CSU), which calls for at least one more hurricane to form during the 2016 hurricane season. The Atlantic Basin Seasonal Hurricane Prediction issued today by Philip J. Klotzbach, Research Scientist, and William M. Gray, Professor Emeritus, at the Department of Atmospheric Science, Colorado State University, at the National Tropical Weather Conference, calls for 12 named storms, 5 hurricanes and 2 major hurricanes.

    Justice for Jessica
    The Caceres family of Belize City are still hurting over the untimely death of 21-year-old Jessica Caceres—the last of three patients to survive after the fatal transfusion of HIV and Syphilis-tainted blood back in March/April 2001. “She was my only daughter and it hurt me big time,” George Caceres, Jessica’s father, told Amandala. He said that what the family has experienced is “a complete injustice.” Although the family settled for BZ$75,000 in October 2002, when Jessica turned 18 she sought the help of the Ombudsman’s Office for a more just compensation. Since 2013, the Ombudsman has knocked at every possible door—the hospital where Jessica was infected, the Commissioner of Police, the General Legal Council, the Medical Council and the Office of the Prime Minister—but there was no notable progress in her case.

    Belize’s Devin Daly representing the Jewel
    We are happy to share the article below on Belize’s Devin Daly, “playing Big” in the U.S. Devin Daly and Sarah Awe highlighted as Senior Athletes of the Year Lssulakers.com SAULT STE. MARIE, Apr 12, 2016 Devin Daly helped lead Lake Superior State men’s basketball program to the most successful four-year stretch in the program’s history, while Sarah Awe recently capped her stellar career finishing ranked fourth in combined wins for the women’s tennis program. Both seniors were honored Tuesday evening (April 12) at the annual Laker Club Athletic Awards Banquet held at the LSSU Cisler Center.

    World ranked Laser sailors visit Belize Sailing School
    On Sunday, April 10, two vivacious and highly decorated Laser sailors, Hanne Weaver, 20, and her brother Ted, 23, visited the Belize Sailing Center and provided inspirational training and racing for the school’s aspiring young Laser sailors. Among Hanne Weaver’s many accomplishments is winning the 2012 USA Junior Female Single-person-Dingy Championship at age 16. She currently ranks 3rd among US senior women Laser Radial sailors, and is in a very strong position to make the 2020 Women’s US Olympic Laser sailing team. Hanne is putting off full-time college to pursue her Olympic goal; she is an assistant manager at a Seattle WA branch of West Marine, the large and prestigious US water sports outfitter and retailer. West Marine fully supports Hanne’s sailing ambitions and allows her time off to pursue them.

    Proto Foundation U-13 and U-15 Five-A-Side
    The Proto Foundation U-13 and U-15 Five-A-Side Football Tournaments climaxed on Saturday, April 9, at the Noel Ferguson Park near Cinderella Plaza with the semifinals and finals, followed by the announcement of individual awards for outstanding U-13 and U-15 players in the tournament. In the first U-13 semifinal, Carlston FC dropped Reality Youths FC, 3-nil, with goals from Lawnie Leslie, Brandon Smith and Shane Pratt. Next was the first U-15 semifinal, and it was Matus Bomberz, 3-1, over Collet FC. Cory Parchue (2) Tyreek Muschamp shook the net for Bomberz, while Tyrique Ciego scored for Collet. In the second U-13 semifinal, Hattieville Riverside Boys clipped Sampson 1256 Automotive by a 1-nil score, courtesy of a goal by Aswald Young.

    2016 1st Biannual RF&G National Ranking Tournament results
    The 2016 1st Biannual RF&G National Ranking Tournament took place this past Sunday, April 10, at the BES Auditorium, ”the home of table tennis”. Some 50 table tennis players ranging from ages 10 to 65 participated across the A, B, and C divisions in this annual National Ranking event. This year, the division rating requirements have changed. “A” Division players are now players with a rating between 1000 to 1499 points; “B” Division players are now 700 to 999 points; and “C” Division players are those with a rating below 700 points. This has allowed several players to play up in a higher division for the first time. The most significant results of this change took place in the “A” Division.

    Editorial: PUDP politics
    There is a reason why, previous to 2003, none of Belize’s two major parties had won consecutive general elections in the post-independence era. For the record, the United Democratic Party (UDP) won in 1984, the People’s United Party (PUP) in 1989, the UDP in 1993, and the PUP in 1998. The Belizeans who made the changes were independent voters. The two major parties share the traditional allegiance of perhaps 60 to 70 percent of the voting electorate, while perhaps 30 to 35 percent of Belize’s voters are independent of the PUDP. Neither of the two parties was able to create sustainable economic development for Belize in the post-independence era. It is true that it is difficult to accomplish anything of systemic change in a single five-year term. But Belize’s independent voters had become impatient with the politicians. The 1984-89 UDP administration had impressive growth figures, but the development was not sustainable: much of it was based on the sale of passports, the sale of Belizean lands, and the introduction of tourism. (Mr. Price’s PUP had been skeptical of tourism.)

    From the Publisher
    When I was a young man in 1969, I became the leader of an oppressed group of people in Belize. I did not seek that leadership: rather, it was thrust upon me. But, no matter, I became the target of the white supremacist power structure here. This is just how white supremacy has operated internationally for five centuries and more: they target the leaders of oppressed groups and seek to destroy those leaders in various ways. When one is targeted, then one finds that every feature of one’s character/personality and every aspect of one’s life comes under heavy scrutiny. It is as if you live under a microscope. The power structure is probing you to find areas of weakness. Your enemies are praying for ill fate to befall you: some actually believe that God is on their side. It is very uncomfortable, trust me. This is one of the prices you pay for leadership.

    Letter to Amandala: Major Lloyd disagrees with Sedi and Assad
    Dear Editor, The Guatemalans, in a show of diplomatic superiority, have insisted that Belize change its referendum law by removing the 60% voter turnout threshold. The Guatemalans argue that the Barrow administration, in a slight of hand, amended the Referendum Act after both countries had agreed to go to the ICJ. It is therefore the view of the Guatemalans that the threshold is designed to lead to a failed referendum in Belize. Dr. Assad Shoman as part of his 3-step plan on the way forward, yields to the Guatemalan demand, and supports a change to the Referendum Act that would allow legitimacy of a referendum by a simple majority, irrespective of voter turnout. I disagree with this primarily on two grounds; (1) the Guatemalans must not be allowed to exercise sovereignty over our domestic statutes and (2), legitimacy by a simple majority does not adequately reflect the important nature of the issue at hand.

    219 years after genocide attempt, Garinagu celebrate survival
    Although the biggest celebration among Belizean Garinagu is observed annually on November 19th, marking their arrival to Dangriga in 1823, there is another historic date which is commemorated among members of the wider Garifuna community—that of 12th April 1797, the date which marks the exile by the British of over 2,000 Garinagu to Roatán, Honduras. Today, the children at Gulisi Community Primary School had a day of activities to mark the occasion. Unlike the Garinagu’s arrival to Belizean shores, their arrival to what is now known as Honduras, was not as joyous, since those who had made it to that destination had seen almost half of their brothers and sisters perish from starvation and disease on the desolate island of Balliceaux, off the mainland of St. Vincent and the Grenadines, the Caribbean island which is the traditional homeland of the Garinagu. Today, Garifuna elders held a press conference in Belize, to highlight the importance of what E. Roy Cayetano calls Garifuna Arrival, Survival and Prosperity Day.

    Recovering our fisheries: Belize’s managed access program buttressed by global study
    “There are fewer fish, smaller fish—and beyond that, they are today even harder to catch than before!” You may have heard this claim being made by fishers from time to time, but in Belize, the conversation is not just about what has been perceived to be a dwindling fish population; it is about the best strategy to recover vital fisheries resources which underpin a vibrant facet of the national economy. Apart from helping to secure Belize’s breadbasket, proper management of resources within our jurisdiction also helps to secure the nation’s territorial integrity amid an unfounded claim to Belizean territory by neighboring Guatemala. For the past decade, Belizean authorities, namely the Belize Fisheries Department, have been working along with the fishing community and NGO partners – the Environmental Defense Fund (EDF) and Wildlife Conservation Society (WCS), which owns the Glover’s Reef Research Station – to introduce rights-based fishing in Belize, and a recent global study shows that this kind of regime could, simply put, mean more fish and more money.

    Dame Minita Gordon, Belize’s first Governor General
    There have not been many women in Belize as distinguished as Dame Minita Gordon. In 1981, Belize received its independence from England; however, Belize still held ties to the monarchy. The person holding the post of Governor General was thus the queen’s representative in Belize following Belize’s attainment of Independence in 1981, and that distinguished position was bestowed on Gordon. Gordon became the first Governor General of Belize. This was quite an achievement, for not only Gordon, but women in general, since at the time such high positions were usually held by males, but Gordon defied the odds when she was appointed to this post. It’s a post she assumed shortly after returning from Canada, where she obtained a doctorate in Applied Psychology from the University of Toronto.

    Belize represented at Caribbean Fisheries Forum
    Belize Fisheries Administrator, Beverly Wade, attended the 14th Meeting of the Caribbean Fisheries Forum, the primary technical deliberative body of the Caribbean Regional Fisheries Mechanism (CRFM), held in Guyana on Thursday and Friday of this week. Speaking at the opening ceremony for the forum, Hon. Noel Holder, Guyana’s Minister of Agriculture, said in his formal address that, “The Fisheries sector plays an important, direct role in national food security. It is well-known that fish has a highly desirable nutrient profile and provides an excellent source of quality animal protein. Globally fish contributes some 16 percent of the total animal protein intake.”

    Territorial Volunteers to commemorate 1859 Border Treaty
    April 30 of this year will mark the 157th anniversary of the 1859 Boundary Treaty that defined the Belize-Guatemala borders. As a result, the Belize Territorial Volunteers (BTV) is organizing a trek to the border at the mouth of the Sarstoon River and the Northern Territorial Volunteers (NTV) is simultaneously organizing a trek to the Garbutt Falls monument. According to a press release issued today by the BTV, this is an “effort to demonstrate support for not only maintaining, but also regaining our territory…” The release also states that, “Amid the most recent acts of aggression by Guatemala in the form of their summarily claiming not only Sarstoon Island, but also the entire Sarstoon river, coupled with the GOB’s continued, willful negligence concerning all matters involving Guatemala’s intransigence, it is clear that a heightened awareness campaign must be maintained.”

    PUP pushes forward with new executive
    On the night of January 31, 2016, almost 2,800 loyal supporters of the People’s United Party voted Hon. John Briceño, area representative of the Orange Walk Central constituency, leader of the Opposition PUP for a second time. Briceno, who was leader from 2008 to late 2011 when he stepped down, easily defeated former leader Francis Fonseca and four-time Lake Independence area representative Cordel Hyde. Fonseca had stepped down from his post as PUP party leader just a day after leading his party to a second consecutive general election defeat in November of 2015. But a few weeks later, just a few days shy of the nomination day set for the leadership convention, Fonseca announced that he was reversing his decision at the behest of some of his loyal standard-bearers.

    Prisoner fined $10,000 for 372 grams of weed
    Eric Javier Castillo, 26, who is presently serving time in prison for burglary, was found guilty of drug trafficking for 372 grams (.82 of a pound) of cannabis when his case concluded in the court room of Chief Magistrate Anne Marie Smith. In her judgment, Chief Magistrate Smith told Castillo that even though there was some discrepancy in one of the prosecution’s witnesses’ testimony, there was sufficient evidence presented to the court to convict him of drug trafficking. The Chief Magistrate did not give Castillo more jail time, but ordered him to pay $10,000; however, if he fails to pay the fine by December 30, 2016, he will spend five years in prison. Therefore, although Castillo should be out of prison in a month’s time, if he defaults to pay the fine, he will lose his freedom and be confined once again to prison.

    The Reporter

    “Shiny” Tillett killed in Dangriga
    George Street boss, Gerald “Shiny” Tillett is dead after he was shot about an hour ago in Dangriga. Tillett was shot in the head. He was one of four persons shot. Information is sketchy, but the Reporter has received reliable reports that one of the victims, a man from Belize City, was shot in the head and is currently being transported to the Belmopan hospital.

    Three men remanded on charges related to abduction/murder
    Three men, Devon Brooks, Sherman Thomas and Kimahl Dawson were remanded to the Hattieville Prison on Friday on charges related to last Sunday morning’s abduction and murder of Luis Ortiz, 39, of Belmopan. The men are charged with attempted murder of Ortiz’ friend, Jose Gonzalez, 40, who was a passenger in Ortiz’ car the morning he was killed. They are also charged with robbery upon Ortiz. The defendants, all from Roaring Creek village, are also suspects for Ortiz’ murder, but Officer Commanding the Belmopan police station, Superintendent Howell Gillett told the Reporter investigators need more evidence before they file that charge against them. Luis Ortiz, a carpenter, was about to leave La Cabana nightclub on the outskirts of Belmopan on the Hummingbird highway along with Gonzalez when another man asked for a lift and two others got in the car.

    PAHO introduces database accessible worldwide on Zika virus
    Countries throughout the world now have access to a new Zika Research Projects List – a database that lists and categorizes all scientific studies on the Zika virus. The Pan American Health Organization/World Health Organization (PAHO/WHO) launched the database this week. The organization has systematically identified and collected basic information on all investigations related to Zika, both those already published and those about to be published. The database includes the title, authors, and a direct link to the article. Each study has been categorized under topics such as: virus, vectors and reservoirs; epidemiology; disease pathogenesis and consequences of Zika infection; clinical management; public health interventions; health systems and services response; research and product development; and causality. Information can also be accessed through searching by publication type: published articles, protocol and publication of preliminary results.

    US warns Caribbean countries about economic citizenship program
    The United States (US) government has warned Caribbean countries offering citizenship by investment to be extra careful about who they give their passports to. The caution was with a view to ensure that recipients have no connection to terrorism or organized crime. The US gave the advice in a statement this week, but said that it was not advising regional countries on whether or not they should offer economic citizenship. Under the program, foreign investors are granted citizenship in exchange for a substantial investment in respective countries. “The United States does not approve or disapprove individual aspects of citizenship by investment programmes,” the US statement said. “The United States strongly believes that all countries have an inherent responsibility to their citizens and the international community to review fully all applicants who seek a nation’s citizenship,” the statement continued.

    Breaking Belize NewsPJ

    George Street boss murdered
    Notorious George Street boss Gerald “Shiney” Tillet has reportedly been shot and killed in Dangriga tonight. Details are scarce at this point but Tillet was apparently accompanied by three other men who were also shot. It is not clear if anyone else died along with Tillet. […]

    Punta Gorda Basketball team defeats champions of Puerto Barrios, Guatemala
    An international friendly basketball match in Punta Gorda (PG) Town last night featured the reigning champions of Puerto Barrios, Guatemala, who took on a U-20 team coached by Raymond ‘Speeno’ Sanchez. The Guatemalan side arrived late yesterday evening and settled into their hotel before […]

    Fair and dry weather prevails
    The National Meteorological Service of Belize is predicting mostly sunny skies today and partly cloudy tonight with little or no rainfall. Winds will be blowing from the East-Southeast at 10-20 knots and the sea state will be choppy to moderate. High temperatures today are […]

    Blogs

    Rediscovering Belize With Help From My Grandkids…And A Lobster
    As we boarded the boat, our grandkids anticipation was palpable. And I was just as ecstatic that we had the opportunity to introduce them to my favorite Caribbean Sea activity since we moved to the island of Ambergris Caye, Belize. My husband and I regularly join friends to spend a relaxing day on the water, with a few stops to snorkel. But this time would be even more special. We’d be sharing the adventure with our grandkids. It was their first visit to Belize…and it would also be their first time snorkeling… We wanted our grandkids to experience and appreciate, firsthand, what drew us to this quirky little Caribbean island, and has anchored us to Belize in our retirement. When the big day arrived, the temperature was warm, the breeze faint. As our boat, the El Gato, glided over the sea I could see everyone relax, hypnotized by the clear water and vibrant hues of the aquamarine sea that surrounded us. “I can’t believe I can see all the way to the bottom”, was a constant comment.

    Would you say “Yes” to Forever? Island style proposal
    Oliver contacted me months ago to capture one of the most important moments of his life, while he is proposing his girlfriend… Arriving early morning in Belize City with cruiseship, flyingTropic Air Belize on our island, I pick them up from the airport and played as a local tour guide… took them around to show them the beauty of the island and at one point we stopped at Ramon’s Village beach and… BAM! This beautiful proposal was followed by a beautiful lunch on the beach at fabulous Victoria House.

    ‘Criminal Minds’ in Belize? After screening, even worse than we imagined
    On a balmy Friday night a couple dozen expats gathered beside the lagoon here on Ambergris Caye for an outdoors screening of this week’s episode of the spin-off CBS show “Criminal Minds: Beyond Borders.” Since its original TV airing on Wednesday, expats and Belizeans all over this tiny country have been convulsed in paroxysms of laughter. To be honest, some have been convulsed in paroxysms of rage. This week, the elite FBI team lead by a heavily botoxed Gary Sinese drops into Belize to find a young American honeymoon couple who have gone two days without posting anything on social media, thus raising suspicions of foul play. Let me say this: We all know Hollywood makes stuff up. That is what they do. That is their job and we mostly appreciate it. But, seriously? From the opening backdrop of an expansive white sand beach, dotted with colorful umbrellas, this show got Ambergris Caye all wrong. Oh, we have colorful umbrellas — mostly green with the logo for Belikin, the national beer, on them. We do not have expansive white-sand beaches. We have mostly small, narrow beaches and, more and more likely, retaining walls erected to fight the erosion.

    International Sourcesizz

    Where in the World is The Crescent-News? Belize
    From left, Mike McDougall, Yvonne Sheets, and Cindy and Richard Shaffer took The Crescent-News to San Pedro Town, Ambergris Caye, Belize, from March 6-12, where they stayed at Shaffer’s condo.

    Expats Enjoy Lower Cost of Living, Provided They Shop Smartly
    A study of expats primarily in Central America, "Expats: Expectations & Reality," found that 86.6% thought that they would achieve a lower cost of living by moving abroad. The study, which was conducted by Best Places in the World to Retire, also found that 84.2% did achieve a lower cost of living. A follow-up study, "Expat Reports: Is It Cheaper to Live Abroad?" reported that 34% spent less than half as much abroad as they did before. Those numbers certainly underscore one of the great advantages of living in certain foreign countries. But what is the cause in those few cases when expats experience a higher cost of living? The reports suggest that this group of expats is spending more on costlier items that are coming from the U.S. than on goods that are produced within the country. As long as they stick with local fare and services, they will pay less than they would in their own countries.

    Cayo Espanto has all the luxury and pampering you expect on vacation
    He wanted something special: a nice quiet place where he and his wife could celebrate their anniversary. From Bora Bora to Mexico, he had scoured the internet looking for the right place, but the perfect escape he wanted alluded him. When he called me at Monroe Travel Service, he said he was just tired of looking. He needed someone who knew about these things to help him out. “I can make this easy,” I told my friend Lonnie McCurry, Jr. after he explained his expectations for an anniversary trip, “but I certainly agree with you that it gets confusing. There are many, many beautiful places in this world, but few are as special as Cayo Espanto, which I think could be exactly what you are looking for!” During his internet search, he admitted he had considered this resort, but he felt uncomfortable spending the money on something he knew very little about. That’s when I started my sales pitch, “Rob and I discovered this tiny private island, just off Ambergris Caye, a few years ago when on vacation in Belize. With nothing but seven deluxe beachfront units and a staff totally dedicated to providing an experience you will never forget, I believe Cayo Espanto has all the luxury and pampering you expect on this vacation.”

    Big hero to big cats honored
    Wildlife isn’t outside of humans, it’s something inside of them. When it’s preserved, humanity’s health and well-being flourishes. “It's part of the ecological fabric of the tenuous world we live in,” said zoologist Alan Rabinowitz, otherwise known as the “Indiana Jones of Wildlife Conservation.” The CEO of Panthera, a global wild cat conservation organization, spent his life studying large cats and working to preserve their natural habitats. On Friday evening he accepted the 2016 Roy Chapman Andrews Society’s Distinguished Explorer Award at a ceremony held at Beloit College's Eaton Chapel. He went on to give a presentation titled “Ground Truthing Exploration: Why Biological Exploration Isn’t History.” Born with a debilitating stutter, Rabinowitz told the crowd he learned he could talk to animals about his hopes and dreams. He found his peace at the Bronx Zoo's great cat house. "They were locked inside their cages like I was locked inside my own head," he said. "I said 'If I ever found my voice I will try to be your voice as well.’” Rabinowitz went on to be a strong protector of wildlife. After beginning his career by studying jaguars in Belize, he traveled around the world studying jaguars as well as clouded leopards, Asiatic leopards, tigers, Sumatran rhinos, bears, leopard cats, raccoons and civets.

    Videos

  • Scuba School and Family Dive Center Belize 2016, 4min.

  • Belize with Liam, 12min.

  • Cahal Pech, Belize, 5min.

  • Swimming with sharks in Belize, 10min. I would like share my 4th of 5 videos of our vacation trip on the Carnival Magic. Today was April 6th, today my wife and some friends we were swimming with the sharks in San Pedro, Belize.

  • Snorkeling Belize UT, 8min. Snorkel trips to laughing bird caye, silk caye, and lighthouse caye. Trips out of Placencia Belize.

  • Snorkeling in Silk Caye, Belize, 5.5min.

  • Ambassador Assad Shoman and the BNTU April 2016 on the Belize/Guatemala differendum, 13min. Brother Assad Shoman does his historical/political presentation at on the issue of the unjust and irritating issue of Guatemala against Belize at the launch of the BNTU's "Stand Up For Belize" Campaign.

  • 2016 DSU Service Learning Trip to Belize, 6min. This Spring Break a group of girls and I went down to San Jose, Succotz in Belize for one week. We helped build a library for a school as well as taught in some of the classrooms. This video will talk about my experience on the Study Abroad: Service-Learning trip that I took.

  • Jardine's sontava habanero XX hot sauce (Belize), 4.5min. This is an ALL NATURAL hot sauce with NO PRESERVATIVES. Now that being said does it pack the heat or leave you in defeat?

    April 16, 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

    A celebration of Belize’s Agriculture Industry
    For years the National Agriculture and Trade Show (affectionately known by Belizeans as the Agric) has been a highlight on Belizeans’ calendars. Since its establishment in 1970, the show has grown by leaps and bounds, featuring all aspects of Belize’s agriculture industry. The main objective of the show is to educate the public on the importance of agriculture and its contribution to the Belizean economy and food security. This show is so monumental that the show grounds was created specifically for the Agric – talk about important! Each year during the Labour Day weekend, the grounds at the northern entrance of Belmopan City come alive with general display areas for produce, a rodeo area, stables, and a main stage area for entertainment. One of the main reasons why I attend the Agric is for the food. Be prepared to break that diet, because you will be in for a feeding frenzy! From freshly prepared cuts of meat – grilled, smoked and fried – to sweet treats like ice cream – in a million and ten flavours – your taste buds will go wild! Oh and let’s not forget the drinks! Only at the Agric can you get a ‘yarda’ (oversized tumbler) of freshly squeezed OJ with your favourite local rum – only if you are 18 and older – for chump change.

    SPHS Female Softball Team training for the CAJFS Championship
    On Saturday, April 2nd, the Belize Softball Federation invited all 19 and under junior female softballers for their first ever training camp. The camp was designed to help players prepare for the XV Central American Junior Female Softball (CAJFS) Championship scheduled for August 11-14. The San Pedro High School (SPHS) female softball team took full advantage of the amazing opportunity. Each team member showed dedication, adhering to all guidelines set by the federation. The team impressed the coaches at Roger’s Stadium in Belize City, so much that they were invited to continue in the ‘try-out’ sessions for a total of six weeks. They will be trying out for the U19 team, where only one or a few players from SPHS will represent Belize in the XV CAJFS Championships. Head Coach Derek Jones, Island Season Coach Jason Carlson, Volunteer Coach Andrew Schulman, and parents of the players are thus appealing to the San Pedro community for help. The team appreciates encouragement and recognition for their efforts, as well as support from their peers and school. However, the team seeks financial assistance to help with traveling costs. Any assistance or advice as to how the school, town and community can offer support, would be greatly appreciated by the team.

    SPTC represented at regional workshop in Jamaica
    Local Economic Development Officer (LEDO) of the San Pedro Town Council (SPTC) Jorge Aldana, is one of four Belizeans who recently returned from a regional knowledge building workshop organized and sponsored by CARILED in Kingston, Jamaica. The working visit, which ran from March 30th to April 1st, is a result of the island’s integration into the second phase of the CARILED program in the region. According to Aldana, various countries’ LEDOs, gained a deeper understanding of their role in the local economic development of their particular areas. “It gave us the opportunity to look at the role we play in developing a supportive relationship with the local business sector on the island,” explained Aldana. He elaborated on the importance of taking “an inclusive approach to local economic development as we do strategic planning, especially when developing a strategic plan of action for our island.” San Pedro is the fastest- growing municipality in the entire country, and with development there is an increase in traffic, demands for infrastructure, and goods and services.

    8-Ball Pool Tournament heading back to the beach
    With less than three weeks before the finals, the San Pedro Billiards Association held another round of fun games in their pre-season 8-ball pool tournament. Games were played at All’s Pool Bar in downtown San Pedro, where teams battled gain extra points as they head to finals. So far, Team Amigos continues to lead the competition. The games continue this weekend by the beach at Cholo’s Bar Pool Room beginning at 7PM on Friday and Saturday, while Sunday’s games start at 1PM.

    MOH yet to confirm Zika case linked to Belize
    According to the Center for Disease Control (CDC), outbreaks of the Zika virus have occurred in 34 countries throughout the Americas and the Caribbean, excluding Belize from their travel warning advisories. However, on April 6th, the officials of the Ministry of Health (MOH) issued a press release referring to a message that was sent from the United States International Health Regulations National Focal Point concerning a case of Zika detected in a patient from the United States (US). According to the CDC, the transmission may have occurred in Belize. The CDC displayed a report indicated that an adult female resident who traveled to Belize from March 14th through 19th, having an apparent fever and rash on the 23rd of March. At the state health department, serum was tested positive for Zika virus RT-PCR. The patient reported that her travel history during that period was limited to Belize, and there was no evidence of possible sexual transmission.

    Veterans and Catrachos to battle for Mayor & Minister’s Cup
    After ten weeks of intense football matches, the grand finale of the Mayor and Minister’s Cup is finally here. Fans filled the Louis Sylvestre Stadium as four teams: Veterans, Ambergris Divers, Catrachos, and Peacemakers, played in the determining semi-final rounds. The first game was on Saturday, April 9th and the Veterans faced Ambergris Divers in a grueling match. Each team fought hard for the 1st place spot in the finals. By the first half, Veterans showed their experience with a 2-goal lead. In the second half, Ambergris Divers fought back, scoring one goal, intending to score another to tie the game. However, they ran out of time and the Veterans defense held up. With a final score of 2-1, Veterans took the #1 seed. On Friday, April 15th, Ambergris Divers and Peacemakers will be competing for the 3rd place trophy at 7 PM. The Veterans and Catrachos are set for the championship game, competing for 1st place and 2nd place on Saturday, April 16th at 7 PM. An awards ceremony will follow, with the presentation of the championship and trophies, as well as the announcement of the recipient of the golden boot, and the MVP of the tournament.

    Ambergris Today

    Impressive Tourism Numbers Prove Belize is Trending
    January and February 2016 saw an increase in arrivals for overnight visitors of 24% and 18.4% respectively over 2015.The increase in passengers over 2015 is reflected by 7,416 in January and 5,800 visitors in February. Overnight arrivals to Belize have grown by 21.2% through the first two months of 2016. This is the first year in history in which the total arrivals to Belize have exceeded 75,000 visitors in the first two months. March, however, was an extraordinary month with over 43,000 overnight tourist visitors. This 10% increase over 2015 is the first time in history that the number surpasses 40,000 visitors in a single month.

    Misc Belizean Sourcesmzz

    2016 Chocolate Festival of Belize
    The tenth annual Chocolate Festival of Belize will be held on the weekend of Friday 20 May-Sunday, 22 May. This year the gala opening Wine and Chocolate evening will be held at The Lodge at Big Falls. Music will be provided by the Garifuna Collective and six local chocolatiers will be offering samples of their products to guests. It is $60 per person for the entrance fee for the Wine and Chocolate evening.

    Paint Up a Storm 2016
    Paint Up a Storm is next Saturday at the Cayo Welcome Center. It's always a fun time making art at the CWC.

    Rotaract Go Kart Fundraiser
    The Rotaract Club San Ignacio had their Go Kart Fundraiser, and it was fun for everyone. Those little go karts really get some speed. Check out their page to see the projects that the funds went towards. Thanks, Rotaract!

    Deputy Chief of Mission and Embassy staff meet with Lusiola Castillo
    The Deputy Chief of Mission and Embassy staff met with Lusiola Castillo to discuss her participation in the International Visitors Leadership Program (IVLP) in the U.S. Ms. Castillo is participating in the Multi-Regional Project “American Libraries”. The program will open in Washington, DC, the seat of the U.S. federal government and a city with a thriving academic population. The program will begin with an overview of U.S. Systems of Libraries in the United States, highlighting the current trends in library technology and the increasing importance of modernization of library services. Ms. Castillo will meet with national libraries and associations to discuss federal grants, advocacy and the profession of librarianship. She will also participate in a full day of programming at the Library of Congress. Meetings with the Pew Research Center and with DC high school students will shape a discussion on the changing role of Libraries in today’s interconnected world.

    The Inspire Celebration Fundraiser
    The Inspire Celebration will take place on June 18, 2016 at the Mahogany Bay Village in San Pedro Ambergis Caye. All proceeds go to the Inspiration Center.

    Sea Cucumber License Renewal
    The Fisheries Department hereby informs Sea cucumber fishermen that RENEWAL of their special license for 2016 Sea cucumber fishing season will run from April 19 – 29, 2016. Failure to comply with the requirements will disqualify fishers from renewing their license for the 2016 Sea cucumber fishing season. Fishers are also advised that fishing for sea cucumber will be allowed during the months of May and June, 2016 only.

    Erosion Assessment April 2016
    On Wednesday, April 13, 2016, Deputy Mayor Gary Greif along with Mr. Keith Nichols from the Caribbean Community Climate Change Center (CCCCC) and Ms. Carianne Johnson from the Pan American Development Fund (PADV) conducted an visual assessment of the erosion that is highly affecting our beaches. A further study will be carried out to identify the various causes and possible solutions to the problem and how the Town Council along with the community can contribute to help alleviate this situation. Mr. Nichols and Ms. Johnson mentioned that global warming is a major factor that is increasing the risk of erosion in many countries. An observation that Mr. Nichols pointed out was that the vehicles that are trafficking the beach are causing damage to the existing beach and contributing to the erosion.

    Caution when approaching mile 90 on the Philip Goldson Highway
    Ministry of Works advises all commuters to exercise extreme caution when approaching mile 90 on the Philip Goldson Highway (formerly Northern Highway) as heavy duty equipment road works is currently being carried out. The road works are being carried out approximately 1 mile from the Corozal, Santa Elena border.

    NATS 2016 Layout
    This year's National Agriculture and Trade Show will be from April 29th to May 1st. They've been upgrading the grounds for it, and here is the map showing the layout for this year's show!

    GS.com Grand Opening
    There's a great new electronics store in Cayo. GS-COM is the name, and it's on Joseph Andrews drive right next to CTN (the new option for internet).

    The Garifuna Film Festival To Feature Two Outstanding Belizeans!
    It would have been a blessed thing for me if the late Ambassador Adalbert Tucker would have lived to see his work transferred to the screen of a documentary film. The thirty or more years ago in which his acquaintance came to me through the work of the Belizean grassroots organization in the diaspora, the Belize Rural Economic Development of Agriculture through Alliance (BREDAA), cannot ever be be forgotten in no way, because it was through his very work of self-consciousness and passionate work for Belize, its people, and the oppressed, that gave birth to what could be called my journey to have become a liberated mind.

    Channel 7

    Teachers Stand Up For Belize
    If you're a parent, you probably had to make other arrangements for your children today because classes were canceled countrywide. That was to make way for an event organized by the teachers union called "Stand Up For Belize." It's an educational campaign on the Belize Guatemala Territorial Dispute - and teachers were the first to get the knowledge. They traveled from all parts of the country to Benque Viejo Town. With all that's been happening with Guatemala, the forum was timely, and they got some all-star guests, namely Wilfred Elrington and Assad Shoman. Our news team was there for the entire event. Daniel Ortiz has that story: Daniel Ortiz reporting: Hundreds of teachers from all over the country converged at the auditorium of the Mount Carmel High School in Benque Viejo. It is famous for being the last town near the Belize Guatemala Border, and so, the stage was appropriately set for the launch of the "Stand Up For Belize" Information Campaign. Luke Palacio - National President, BNTU: "We are so happy to be near the border with Guatemala as we send this message today that the Belize National Teachers Union is launching its campaign for all of us to stand up for Belize, because Belize is for Belizeans."

    Foreign Minister's Trial In The Court of Public Opinion
    And just before that motorcade to the Benque/Melchor Border, the forum closed with a question and answer section. The teachers were allowed to ask the two Panelists, Foreign Minister Wilfred Elrington, and Ambassador Assad Shoman, about any and everything pertaining to the Belize - Guatemala issue. And the "maestros" seized upon the opportunity. In fact, it got to a point where the teachers more or less put Elrington's handling of the Foreign Affairs portfolio on trial in the court of public opinion. Here are some of the tough questions that they put to Belize's top diplomat: Teacher: "I a lot a lot to say." Organizer: "Excuse me, one minutes please. Let's not forget the rule." Teacher: "I will speak. It's my turn. We are bullied by our neighbor and we can't stand up. We are living in a abusive relationship here and we are afraid… as our minister said. I don't know why, but this is not a relationship that is working. We have to stand up to our bullies. The bullies will be there as long as we do not make a stand sir."

    Teachers Say "Sedi" Soft
    As you heard, some of the teachers called Elrington out for being too passive on controversial issues surrounding the Belize Guatemala territorial dispute. Aware that he might be criticized for that, Elrington started his presentation with an explanation that he is only following the strict guidelines set out by Foreign Ministers before him. Elrington today revealed that there is a special section of the Confidence Building Measures which mandates that all Foreign Ministers are expected to dial it way back while publicly discussing any matters related to the Guatemalan claim. Here's how he made his case to a roomful of skeptical teachers: Hon. Wilfred Elrington, Minister of Foreign Affairs: "Before Assad Shoman ceased to be head of the delegation and head of the negotiating team, he caused the confidence building measures to be agreed upon and I will read to you what he put in train and which I am constrain to follow. You will find that sometimes members of my government speak differently about issues. For example, in the Conorquie issue there were members in my government, head of the police and other, even ministers were saying 'I am certain that it is the Guatemalans that killed Conorquie'. My position was if you bring me the evidence I will say that."

    Ambassador Assad Challenges Teachers
    So, while the teachers gave it to Elrington during the question and answer session, Assad Shoman challenged the teachers to make two decisions which he thinks are in the best interest of resolving the Guatemala territorial Claim. It is by now well known that as part of the education system in Guatemala, they teach "Belize es Nuestro" in their primary schools. Well, Shoman is requesting that the the territorial dispute be made a permanent part of the education system in Belize Here's how he put it to them during his presentation: Ambassador Assad Shoman - Opposition representative: "It would be a great outcome of this campaign, if your union, I'm going to make a proposal to you now, can pass resolution at your next convention demanding that the Ministry of Education put the Guatemalan claim on the curriculum. Don't just stand there and see your country sovereignty and integrity chipped away, do something about it. Let's move on. I want to suggest to pass another resolution asking the House of Representative to amend the referendum act which now says that by any referendum at least 60 percent of the people have to go and vote..."

    Charges For Alleged Killer Cops Downgraded
    It made major national headlines and even provoked a riot on Caye Caulker last year when 18 year old Hilberto Sotz was killed while in police custody. Two island cops, 32 year old Hallet king and 43 year old Leonard Nunez were charged for murder. It was a swift and decisive move by police, which did somewhat allay public outrage - after all, the teenager died from blunt force trauma. But, today we learned that the charge of murder against two police constables has been reduced to manslaughter. It happened when they appeared today before the Chief Magistrate, Anne Marie Smith, and the directive came from the Director of Public Prosecutions.

    Fissures On the PUP Front?
    Last night we told you about the meeting that the PUP held yesterday with Assad Shoman to discuss the Sarstoon peace-keeping Proposals. It was a meeting for the party's national executive members, its parliamentarians, and standard bearers to hear from Assad Shoman - who is the party appointed representative in the Belize- Guatemala talks. But, 7News has learned that some big names were absent: namely Deputy Leader Julius Espat, Cayo North Standard Bearer Misho Chebat, Belmopan Standard Bearer Jason Patrick Andrews, Corozal Southeast Representative Florencio Marin Jr, Orange Walk North Standard Bearer Ramon Monchie Cervantez, Toledo West Representative Oscar Requena, and Freetown Representative Francis Fonseca. Now, Deputy Party Leader Julius Espat also missed the last major executive meeting, and when it was done he was critical of his party leader's purge of the executive. Well this time, there was no such thing. He told us he was simply otherwise engaged; busy in his area meeting with various village council leaders. Fair enough, but we know from our background sources that Espat is firmly against the pro-ICJ stance that has been adopted by his party since Briceno took over.

    Legalize IT, Or Criminalize It?
    The Social Security Board's Debate Series concluded today. As we've been reporting, there were a number of debates between junior colleges across the country but it all came down to 2 finalists: Ecumenical Junior College and Corozal Junior College. Now during those elimination rounds several topics were argued such as the impact of media on society and law reform among others, but for this final round - it was all about Weed. The specific topic was: "The criminal legislation of marijuana has been a major discussion in many countries. Do you believe that marijuana should be legalized in Belize?" Tough question and Courtney Weatherburne was there to hear both sides of the argument: Whether its weed, ganja, spliff or any other name used, this herb is all around us. It is sung and celebrated in music, in movies and even more so on the streets. It has become a ubiquitous reality that some have openly embraced while others have resoundingly refused.

    Sergio Patt, Postman, Wanted
    Police say that second grade Post Office cashier, Orange Walk Resident Sergio Patt, is wanted for questioning. He's the lead suspect in the disappearance of $20 thousand dollars which went missing from the Post Office between October and November of last year. Investigations show that Patt produced a bogus spreadsheet to cover the shortages. Initially, Patt was sent home while the investigation continued and the Public Service Commission decided the fate of his employment status. Now, police are actively seeking Patt in their criminal investigation.

    Mexican Art With A Yucatan Flair
    The great European artist Leonardo Da Vinci was born on this very day- April 15th - 565 years ago. And to honor his legacy, the Mexican Institute in Belize is bringing a little taste of Yucatan to the country. They invited four distinguished artists from SOMAAP, an association of Mexican Artists to share some of their work. The art exhibit is entitled "Yucatan Abstract and Reality Pientre"- which is French for painter. The official launch began just a few minutes ago at 7:00. But we stopped by earlier today to meet some of the artists and to learned a little about their artistic flavor. We also asked them for some tips for our local artists on how to make a successful career out of art. The exhibit will be on display at the Mexican institute for the next month.

    When Will Guats Reply To Sarstoon Proposals?
    Earlier this week, Foreign Minister Elrington hosted a press conference to outline an 11 point proposal for a protocol which should de-escalate tensions in the Sarstoon River. The Guatemalan Delegation which came down to the OAS Office In Beqnue Viejo to meet with their Belizean counterparts has since delivered that proposal to their government for consideration. The hope is that a response would be forthcoming today, which is the end of the week. Well, according to Shoman, he and Foreign Minister Elrington are still waiting and that response hasn't come as yet: Ambassador Assad Shoman - Opposition representative: "I was there when and I stopped play the most offended proposals that you gave the Guatemalans last Friday. Well we said this is how we should behave in dealing with the river based on 1859 the treaty, which I want you all to read just like how you read article 7, you read article 6 it talks about the river. We put forward our proposal. We, the Belize side it started over, with the minister and then others came in, you and others added to it but I agree with what you put and we asked the Guatemalans to respond within a certain time. We said within a week. Well guess what today it makes 1 week and they haven't responded."

    Percy Pilgrim For Supreme Court in June
    Exactly one year ago, 19 year old Percival Pilgrim was remanded for the murder of Edward "Ghost" Usher. Well, today he was committed to stand trial for that killing in the June session of the Supreme Court. Pilgrim was unrepresented and did not challenge any of the evidence that was put before the court. Prosecutor, Inspector Hector Rodriguez submitted as many as 12 statements recorded by police from witnesses in the community. The 40 year old Usher was killed in broad daylight on April 11, 2015, as he stood on his stairs in the Ghost Town area. Pilgrim gave the court two names of persons who can give an alibi for him, namely an uncle and a sister.

    Primary School "Ping-Pang" Players
    7 primary schools, 60 participants, and 5 hours of intense ping pong battling! That's what the 5th annual Dutch Lady Primary School OPEN was all about. The table tennis tournament was held at the Belize Elementary School compound this morning. At the end of it late this afternoon, the two remaining players battled it out for the first prize. It was intense and emotions flared, but at the end only one could be named the champ- and it went to 10 year old Taye Parkinson of St. Joseph Primary. We spoke to the President of the Belize Table Tennis Association who has been trying to promote the game for 7 years. While the tournament was won by a St. Joseph primary student, the overall champion, based on points, was Belize Elementary School. The 12 top athletes were awarded for their performance and some of those winners will be competing at the upcoming CODICADER regional tournament later this year.

    Borland Did Win
    And before we leave tonight, a small correction to our final story last night. Cyclist Joel Borland was the winner of the Krem New Year's Classic on race day. He retains that hold on first place, but the original second and third place finishers, Greg Lovell and Byron Pope have been stripped of their second and third places due to testing positive for banned substances. So with the revised results, Justin Williams now takes second, and Johnny Vlaencia takes third. The two riders also lose all their station prizes.

    Channel 5

    BNTU Converges on Benque to Launch Stand Up for Belize Campaign
    Teachers converged today in Benque Viejo del Carmen, the community closest to the border with Guatemala in west. This is where the Belize National Teachers Union kicked off a campaign [...]

    Union is Challenged to Formulate a Position on ICJ
    Seasoned negotiator Assad Shoman, an expert on the Belize/Guatemala issue, has a total of forty-one years of experience dealing with the territorial dispute.  He challenged educators to go a step [...]

    How Will Newfound Knowledge on Territorial Dispute be Taught in School?
    While the objective of the countrywide campaign is twofold, emphasis is being placed on interpreting the information presented for future use in the classroom.  According to B.N.T.U. National President Luke [...]

    The Referendum Unit and its Role in Pedagogy
    The role of the Referendum Unit which has now evolved into the International Boundaries Unit is critical to the overall awareness by Belizeans of the Belize/Guatemala issue. The wealth of [...]

    Raw Sewage Pumped into Haulover Creek Causes Public Uproar
    Can you imagine a scenario where in Belize City, in 2016, raw sewage is being pumped into the Haulover Creek? Incredible, right? But it’s true. News Five visited a site [...]

    Sarstoon FOB Nears Completion
    The Belize/Guatemala dispute is currently front and center of all national discourse, with special attention given to the Sarstoon where the Guatemalans are insisting that their permission is required to [...]

    Officer’s Murder Charge Downgraded to Manslaughter
    Back in June 2015, police charged two officers on duty at the Caye Caulker police station with the murder of eighteen-year-old Hilberto Sotz who was killed while in police custody.  [...]

    Percival Pilgrim to Stand Trial in ‘Ghost’ Usher’s Murder
    A year ago, gunmen executed forty-year old Edward “Ghost” Usher, a resident of Mayflower Street while he was on the steps of his house in the Ghost Town area in [...]

    Dangriga Police Make Progress in Disturbing Case Involving Disabled Minor
    Tonight we can report that there is some progress in the investigation of an allegation of a disturbing crime in Dangriga. Police have been encountering difficulties in getting a formal [...]

    Marijuana is the Topic of SSB’s 2016 Debate Competition
    Today the Social Security Board held the finals of its 2016 Debate Competition where six students from two tertiary level institutions faced off – Corozal Junior College and Ecumenical Junior [...]

    Ecumenical Junior College Wins Spirited Debate on Marijuana Legislation
    The debate raged on all morning, with the three members of each team presenting the results of studies and surveys to support the stance assigned for the debate.   Pearla [...]

    An Update on John Saldivar’s Deputy Leadership Campaign
    On May twenty-ninth delegates of the United Democratic Party will select a new first Deputy Leader to replace Gaspar Vega. It’s expected that the victor will automatically get a shoe [...]

    Primary School Table Tennis Competition Held in Belize City
    Student athletes from primary schools across Belize City participated in a table tennis tournament at the Belize Elementary School today.  The event was organized by the Belize Table Tennis Association [...]

    How to Prevent ZIKA: A Few Tips You Should Follow
    The Ministry of health says it will be providing information on the results of ZIKA tests next week. The samples were taken from two persons in the Stann Creek and [...]

    LOVE FM

    UNICEF Maintains Stand Against Curfew and/or Detention of Children
    Earlier this week we have heard that the curfew or preventative detention of youth on the streets, unsupervised, has been given the green light. Assistant Commissioner Police Chester Williams made the initial announcement of this initiative on March 17 following the BLACK March by the Belize Police Department. That announcement had sparked much debate in […]

    Stann Creek Ecumenical Wins SSB Debate
    The Social Security Board held their final debate competition for 2016. Participating schools were Corozal Junior College versus Ecumenical Junior College. The topic of the debate was “the criminal legislation of marijuana has been a major discussion in many countries. Do you believe that marijuana should be legalized in Belize?” The Social Security Board held […]

    From Murder to Manslaughter for Two Cops
    A charge of murder against two police constables, Hallet King and Leonard Nunez, was reduced to manslaughter when they appeared today before the Chief Magistrate, Anne Marie Smith, on instruction from the Director of Public Prosecutions. King and Nunez were both released on bails of two thousand dollars each and their case was adjourned until […]

    BNTU Launches STAND UP FOR BELIZE Campaign
    About 1500 educators came from the various districts to attend the launch of a campaign of the Belize National Teachers’ Union at the Mount Carmel High School Auditorium. This campaign carries the theme, Stand up for Belize and is geared at educating the teachers on the Belize/Guatemala issue and the progress that negotiators have made […]

    ICJ – The Best Option for Belize?
    While the BNTU is seeking knowledge on the Belize/Guatemala matter there is also the issue of the International Court of Justice and whether Belize should or should not go. Former Foreign Minister Assad Shoman spoke on the advantages that Belize has over Guatemala in the territorial differendum. According to BNTU’s President, Luke Palacio the union […]

    Shoman Agrees with the Artificial Border
    ‘Artificial Border’ – it is a term that brought on harsh criticisms against Foreign Minister Wilfred ‘Sedi’ Elrington. Today, however, former Foreign Minister clarified the term and told the teachers at today’s forum that he is in agreement with Elrington on the artificial border. According to the National Geographic website, borders are real or artificial […]

    Neighbour Complains of Fire Hearth Next Door
    Thelma’s Kitchen on Ceasar Ridge Road is a popular restaurant on the south side of Belize City. While many enjoy their food, one person is not happy with Thelma’s Kitchen and that is neighbor, Betty Bradley. Bradley said she has been complaining for some time to officials because the fire hearth used by the owner […]

    Mayas Object to Construction of Garifuna Monument
    The Maya Land Rights issue against the Government of Belize was one thing but now it seems that they are preparing to take on the Garifuna community in southern Belize. Love News understands that the Chairman and Alcalde of Midway Village, Juan Ico and Thomas Ishim have requested have requested that the construction of a […]

    Belize/Guatemala In the Schools’ Curriculum
    Yesterday we brought you the interview where BNTU’s President Luke Palacio spoke of incorporating certain subjects into the curriculum including history, geography and civics. Today Palacio spoke of what brought about today could be easily incorporated into the subjects.

    PlusTV

    Garifuna Community mourns death of beloved leader from Honduras
    The National Garifuna Council is mourning the death of one of the ethnic group’s beloved leaders from Honduras. He is Sasamu Celeo Alvarez Casildo; described as a cultural warrior, human rights activist and promoter of justice. Casildo was a founding member of the Central American Black Organization along with the National Garifuna Council. He was the leader and mobilizer of Organization for Community and Ethnic Development (ODECO), an organization focused on empowering and fighting the cause of Garinagu and Afro-descendants of Honduras. The National GArifuna Council says they are eternally grateful for his stalwart leadership and extend sympathies to his immediate family, ODECO family, and the government and people of Honduras. Sasamu Celeo will be laid to rest in Honduras on Thursday April 14th. A delegation from the NGC in elize will be attending the funeral.

    The Reporter

    CXC going digital
    The Caribbean Examinations Council (CXC) announced this week that candidates will soon be able to take their exams online. CXC said that it will launch a pilot project during the week of April 25, which will enable students to take their exams on a computer or another […]

    BEL blames Mexico for country-wide outages Sunday night
    The Belize Electricity Limited (BEL) has blamed its Mexican supplier, Comercial Federal de Electricidad (CFE) for three countrywide power outages that occurred on Sunday night, which spanned just over an hour. In a prompt press release following the outages, BEL explained that it stabilized the […]

    Consultations on LGP Gas aim to improve industry
    The Liquid Petroleum Gas (LPG) industry will be receiving advice from a team of Mexican experts in the next few weeks, as part of a technical assistance arrangement aimed at improving the industry in Belize. The Mexican team will be in Belize on May 18-19 […]

    Taiwan helps Belize vehicle/drivers license system go digital
    Belize will soon have an electronic system for driver and vehicle licenses, as well as vehicle registration with a web portal to access information thanks to the efforts of the Central Information Technology Office (C.I.T.O.) and Taiwan’s technical mission in Belize, led by Ming-Cheng (Diego) Tsai. Two information and communications […]

    Belize stands to benefit from diplomatic ties with four countries
    Belize renewed diplomatic ties with four countries when ambassadors representing each country presented their credentials to Governor General, Sir Colville Young on Monday. Non-resident Ambassadors Aitzaz Ahmed of Pakistan, Yusra Khan of Indonesia, Ibrahim Obeidat of Jordan and Mohamed Saadat of Palestine each conveyed their […]

    Britain launches $300 million Caribbean Infrastructure Fund
    Commonwealth Caribbean countries now have access to a £300 million fund (some US $426.5 million) for infrastructure projects, through the newly launched United Kingdom Caribbean Infrastructure Fund (UKCIF). Baroness Sandip Verma, the UK’s Development Minister for the Caribbean, launched the UKCIF on Monday at the […]

    Dangriga man accused of molesting step daughter
    Dangriga police, with help from the Ministry of Human Development, are investigating the case of a man accused of raping his mentally ill step-daughter. The mother of the 15-year-old girl visited the Dangriga Police Station on April 1 to make the report. According to the […]

    Top Cop targets Chinese Shops for posing as restaurants
    Deputy Commissioner of Police Chester Williams this week announced his intention to wage war against Chinese businesses which sell beer to patrons after 9 o’clock at night The Deputy Commissioner says he intends to close down those businesses which cannot show that they are are operating as real restaurants. Williams […]

    Editorial
    The prognosis for those with the Zika virus just got worse! The Centers for Disease Control in the United States announced on Wednesday this week that there is an unmistakable link between Zika and growth deformity in babies. Babies born with this deformity have smaller heads and weaker brains. Sometimes […]

    Is Guatemala serious about Sarstoon protocols?
    On March 15, 2016, it was agreed at a meeting hosted by the OAS in Washington D.C., that Belize and Guatemala would prepare draft proposals for a way forward in the Sarstoon. This is an area that had become a hotspot shared by both countries. Working together, Belize’s Ministry of […]

    Date set for Faber/Saldivar showdown
    The United Democratic Party’s (UDP) much anticipated convention to select a new deputy party leader has been set for May 29. The UDP National Party Council decided on the date. The convention will be held at the ITVET compound in Belize City. Some 588 delegates […]

    GOB settles with victim’s family, Deputy ComPol still on interdiction
    The Government of Belize has agreed to pay $70,000 to the family of Yolanda Valencia after it was sued along with Deputy Commissioner of Police, Miguel Segura for causing her death in a traffic accident in August 2014. Justice Shona Griffith presided over the Court […]

    Chester cracking down on businesses
    The Belize Police Department is proposing a crackdown on business establishments operating after 9:00 p.m. without a restaurant license as part of its ongoing crime prevention measures. According to Assistant Commissioner of Police (ACP) Chester Williams, Eastern Division South Commander, the law is clear on the difference between a restaurant […]

    Former Hofius employees charged with stealing $287,000
    Two former employees of the well-known hardware store, Hofius on Albert Street have been charged with 49 counts of ‘theft’ of more than a quarter of a million dollars from the company. Koshia Gentle, a former supervisor and Lydia Bennett, a former clerk at the […]

    Breaking Belize NewsPJ

    Accused teenage murderer to stand trial
    40 year old Edward Usher of Mayflower Street was shot dead on his doorsteps in broad daylight a year ago this week. The young man accused of pulling the trigger, Percival Pilgrim, will now stand trial for that murder after a preliminary inquiry concluded today. […]

    Accused in alleged murder conspiracy allowed to leave country
    Korean national businesswoman, Hyang Chong Park, who was granted Supreme Court bail in the sum of $75,000 with stringent conditions after being charged in the plot to kill four persons in Belize, allegedly masterminded by Bradley Paumen, successfully applied to the Supreme Court on Thursday for permission […]

    Policemen’s charges in Hilberto Sotz case reduced
    Back in June 2016, police had initially charged two of their own officers posted on Caye Caulker with murder, for allegedly beating 18 year old Hilberto Sotz to death while in their custody. Today, after 10 months on remand for murder, a directive from the […]

    Immigration Again!? Chinese passports “suspect”
    Minister of State in the Ministry of Immigration and Nationality, Beverly Castillo, has confirmed to other media that her Ministry is researching the validity of two passports issued to Chinese nationals recently. The holders are suggested to have acquired their passports with suspect documents, […]

    Report finds trouble coming for Latin American region
    Latin America and the Caribbean are in contraction, and are unable to find a balance between reducing spending and minimizing its effects on economic activity and hard-won social gains, the World Bank reports. As detailed in “The Commodity Cycle in Latin America: Mirages and […]

    Hands and Heart Mission to conduct surgeries in northern Belize
    A Medical Mission will arrive in Belize over the weekend and will be conducting a series of general surgeries for patients in the Orange Walk and Corozal Districts. The Hands and Heart Mission will be arriving on April 17. Medical Chief of Staff at […]

    Mainly fair and dry weather conditions continue over our area
    The National Meteorological Service of Belize is predicting mostly sunny and warm weather today, then partly cloudy skies tonight with little or no rainfall expected. Winds will be blowing from the East-Southeast at 5-15 knots and the sea state will be choppy. High temperatures […]

    Blogs

    Dreams do Come True
    I would like to personally congratulate the new Ambergris Caye Belize Rotary Club for jumping in with both feet and making a difference in our community so quickly. Without a doubt they will go far and grow strong fast. On Wednesday past, Shirlee Arnould our Branch Coordinator, Heidi Simmons our newly appointed Blood Drive Coordinator and I were invited to represent the San Pedro Branch of the Belize Red Cross at their weekly meeting. They wanted to know first hand what we do and how they could help. This invitation is as good as gold and proof to me that dreams do come true. I have been quietly asking for more cavalry since 2014 and a large group of really great people just stepped up. I was tasked with telling them about our youth group, volunteer vacations and our First Aid Program. The one thing that is making me finally like public speaking (even though I still get butterflies) is being able to tell people about the unfolding of the movie that has long been running in my head and how the next scene is coming to reality before my eyes. My pleasure in that comes greatly from the fact of seeing the giant puzzle come together where all the charity organizations take it to a new level of working smarter not harder to help each other rise up strong for the greater good of everyone.

    There is a Difference: FULL SERVICE Snorkel & Caye Caulker Tour on YOLO with Island Dreams Tours
    Yesterday, I took a ride on the beautiful 40 foot, custom built (here in San Pedro) catamaran “YOLO”. A ride out to Hol Chan, Shark Ray Alley and then beautiful Caye Caulker and I can attest: this boat and the crew are one of a kind. There were 16 of us in all…and there is SO MUCH ROOM on this boat. For lounging (in and out of the sun), chatting, getting ready to snorkel… We headed out – cruising towards Belize’s most popular snorkel spots. First stop, Hol Chan Marine Reserve – turtles, fish of all colors and gorgeous coral.

    International Sourcesizz

    Culture, food, music of Belize in spotlight at New Orleans Jazz Fest 2016
    The music, food and culture of Belize will be woven throughout activities on Fair Grounds during the New Orleans Jazz Fest this year. Belize is the focus of the 2016 Cultural Exchange Pavilion. Each year, the pavilion, which is in the center of the Fair Grounds, near Food Area II and the African Marketplace, puts the spotlight on a contributions of specific nations, such as Haiti and Brazil, or important New Orleans culture providers, such as Mardi Gras Indians and, most recently, NOCCA in 2015. This year, festival goers will have the opportunity to hear music, see demonstrations and learn about the history and customs of the small Caribbean country of about 300,000, which includes people of Maya, Mestizo, Creole, East Indian, Garifuna, Chinese, Lebanese, Mennonite and Caribbean descent. The country was under British rule until 1981. The national language is English. The The New Orleans Jazz and Heritage Festival presented by Shell, which runs April 22-24 and April 28-May 1 at the Fair Grounds Race Course & Slots, 1751 Gentilly Blvd., has hosted cultural exchanges since 1996. Belize and New Orleans share cultural traditions, including Carnival and a respect for local music traditions. Florencio Mess, 78, who maintains the centuries-old harp-making tradition of the Maya K'ekchi' harp, will perform in the pavilion and be interviewed on the Alison Minor Music Heritage Stage on April 30 at 3:15 p.m.

    5 Magical Mayan Relics in the Mountains of Belize
    Where did the origin of art in the Americas begin? With early colonial artist John White (1540-1593)? With the Aztecs of central Mexico, who ruled an empire from the 14th to 16th centuries? Or perhaps with the tribes of the Great Plains of North America, who produced the oldest known painted object in the region – a Cooper Bison Skull found in Oklahoma from around 10,500 BC? In pre-Columbian times there is only one known civilization that created a fully-developed writing system, along with art, architecture and even astronomy – the Maya. Today most people think primarily of their perfectly-formed pyramids, such as Chichen Itza in Mexico. But the Mesoamerican culture spread right down through modern Guatemala and Honduras to El Salvador, leaving a legacy of creation that is still being discovered today. It’s in Central America’s only English-speaking nation though, that a truly stunning variety of artifacts can be found in such a compact area – Belize. In Western Belize, the Maya Mountains stretch 115 kilometers all the way from eastern Guatemala, covered in a blanket of jungle that once protected the Maya, and then the ruins of their civilization. Now, from the intricate reliefs of Xunantunich to the might of Caracol’s towering architecture, Belize offers a rare chance to get up close and personal with one of the world’s ancient people’s – a situation that may not last for long.

    They Said There Was No Hope For This Feeble Stray Kitten, But His Saviour Refused To Give Up
    On 9th January 2015, a starving stray kitten was found on a busy highway in Belize, Central America. Bruised and bloody, his jaw was broken and he was almost starved to death. A young woman saw the poor creature as she drove past him in her car. Without a moment’s hesitation, she picked him up and put him in her car. As the kitten sat down in her passenger seat, he let out a soft miaow, as if thanking her for rescuing him. His saviour took him immediately to the nearest veterinary clinic where he would need urgent medical care. The young woman took him home and gave him all the love and attention he had so cruelly been denied. A year on, and Smeagol is doing very well! He has his own Facebook page and Instagram account where his mum shares all his little moments of happiness. You wouldn’t believe his transformation!

    Stakeholders set path for establishment of regional creative industries body
    The Caribbean is renowned worldwide for its creative culture, including music, folklore, crafts, festivals and carnivals. Despite making some progress in developing the cultural and creative sectors, the region has lagged in translating its creativity into substantial economic gains. This reality prompted the Caribbean Community (CARICOM) heads of government at their 26th Intercessional meeting held in February 2015, to recommend the establishment of a Caribbean Creative Industries Management Unit (CCIMU), a dedicated body to address the needs of the region’s cultural and creative industries. Further to CARICOM’s recommendation, on Tuesday, April 12 in Kingston, Jamaica, 28 stakeholders representing the creative industries of the region gathered for a historic consultation. This meeting set the path for the creation of the CCIMU. When established, the Unit will address the needs of the regional creative industries -- including business development, trade opportunities, and the protection of artists’ and stakeholders’ intellectual property rights.

    Jamaica moves towards ditching Queen, impeachment legislation and term limits
    Legislation to allow impeachment proceedings against corrupt public officials and Parliamentarians, constitutional amendments to transition Jamaica to a republic and fixed election dates and term limits are on the priority list of the Jamaica Government for 2016. Governor General Sir Patrick Allen highlighted those plans, among others, as he delivered the Throne Speech during the 2016/17 ceremonial opening of Parliament yesterday. He told Members of Parliament and Senators the issues were among the “major action items” on the government’s legislative agenda for this year. Listing those items, Sir Patrick said a Constitution (Amendment) Bill will be laid to, among other things, replace the Queen with a non-executive President as Jamaica’s Head of State; Parliament will see legislation to create fixed election dates and term limits for the Prime Minister; legislation to provide for impeachment proceedings to be brought against corrupt public officials and Parliamentarians is on the cards; and an Integrity Commission Bill will establish a single anti-corruption body.

    USAID announces $30 million challenge to combat zika
    On Wednesday, the US Agency for International Development (USAID) launched Combating Zika and Future Threats: A Grand Challenge for Development, calling innovators around the world to submit groundbreaking ideas to enhance the ability to respond to the current zika outbreak and generate cutting-edge technologies and approaches that better prepare the world to address the disease threats of tomorrow. In support of the Global Health Security Agenda championed by US President Barack Obama, the Combating Zika and Future Threats Grand Challenge will invest up to $30 million in groundbreaking innovations and interventions that enhance our ability to prevent, detect, and respond in both the short and long-term by sourcing innovations that mitigate the spread and impact of Zika virus and improve the ability to combat future infectious disease outbreaks.

    Garifuna International Film Festival
    Friday, May 27 at 2 AM - 4 AM. 1416 Electric Ave, Venice CA 90291. Info Freda 310-663-5813

    Videos

  • The Department of the Environment - DOE shares important information on illegal dumping in their latest ad, 2min.

  • Belize w Hugh Parkley thru Carnival Glory, 5min. Few shots on dives in Belize while on western caribbean cruise.

  • Belize Audubon Society Activities, 4.5min.

  • Golfcart,San Pedro Belize, 1min.

  • Economic Support Fund CARSI grants, 65min. Planning on submitting a proposal for the Economic Support Fund CARSI grants, but missed the Q&A session we held earlier this week? Check out the recorded session here. Also here is the link to the Notice of Funding Opportunity for easy reference -http://1.usa.gov/1Sk2qY4

  • Corkscrew Progression by Julian Rivero, 4min. This is my corkscrew progression. Took me a looooong time to get this one down.. I learnt the twist similarly to the Backfull and i couldn't Learn it doing it horizontally with the btwist method..

  • 2016 Belize David and Stephanie, 15min.

  • Butts Up Cave Tubing Belize with Jimmy, 72min. This is a video of out Cave Tubing excursion we took in Belize with Butts Up Cave Tubing you can find them here Pieces of the . Cave tubing with Butts Up tour guides. They also fed us Belizian tamales afterwards. They met us at cruise port. About 1 hour out on motor coach. Took about a . On one of our last days in Belize we went cave tubing with Butts Up with Jimmy as our guide. Jimmy was a wealth of historical . February 2014 with Speedy and Butts Up Tours Bob Martynec, Tim Gagahan, Nancy Moors & Ann Garwood.

  • Pelican violates kayaker's personal space in Belize, 1min. A tourist on a kayaking trip in Belize got up close and personal with a friendly pelican that showed no respect for her personal space. The video, posted to Facebook by the Paddle Me Hard kayaking organization, shows Wisconsin woman Kathy Dahl encountering the pelican while kayaking with a group off Caye Caulker, Belize. The pelican initially stands on the edge of Dahl's kayak, but gradually moves in closer until the bird is on the laughing woman's lap. The pelican flies away when another kayaker pokes at it with a paddle.

  • Caye Caulker, Belize [Explore 180°], 4min. Sur une petit air de Reggea, découvrez l'île de Caye Caulker. Entre vie en mode "slow" sur une 'île de la Caraïbe, plongée sur la barrière de corail méso-américaine et coucher de soleil, partez en voyage au Bélize.

  • Belize with Liam, 12min.

  • BNTU 'Stand Up For Belize" Rally Friday April 15, 2016, 8.5min. Belize National Teachers' Union National President gives his opening remarks at Friday's BNTU Stand Up For Belize rally in Benque Viejo del Carmen. Venue : Mt. Carmel High School auditorium

  • Belize Thatch Roof Lesson, 1min.

  • Belize Audubon Society Activities 8, 4.5min.

  • Belize - Day 1 - Laguna + Lubaantun, 9min. I was lucky enough to be a chaperone with the first year Nunavut Sivuniksavut students on their cultural school trip to Belize in May 2015. This was the first day we were there. We stayed in Laguna. We had a farm tour and visited the ruins at Lubaantun.

  • Spring Break 2015 - Belize, 8.5min. Skip to 7:04 to see my favorite part (diving in Ambergris Caye!) 0:00 Intro 0:42 Lamanai Ruins 1:17 Climbing the High Temple 2:32 Eating Termites!!!! 3:41 *Important Info Regarding Wild Spider Monkeys* 4:06 Drinking Coconut Water 4:26 Ziplining 4:48 Cave/River Tubing 5:36 Xunantunich Ruins 6:08 Butterfly Garden 6:21 The Belize Zoo 6:44 Visiting a Local School 7:04 Ambergris Caye 8:07 Conclusion

  • BELIZE 2016, 3min. Glover reef atoll and Hopkins

  • Belize March 2016 with One World Dive & Travel, 11min. Another adventure with One World Dive & Travel, this time to Ramon's Village in Belize. An amazing week filled with sharks, sailing, Lionfish Hunting, golf carting and many new adventures!

    April 15, 2016


    FOR TODAY'S BELIZE WEATHER, CLICK HERE

    Click for our Daily Tropical Weather Report.

    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

    SP Hyperbaric chamber offers refresher course
    A refresher course on hyperbaric medicine saw dive shop staff learning principles of accident management training relating to diving injuries. As the diving season continues, the need for dive guides to respond quickly in the event of an emergency is crucial to saving a customer’s life. The informational session took place on Monday, April 11th, at the Lions Den shortly after 7PM, and was led by the Sub-aquatics of Belize Ltd. This entity is a member of the 12 Sub-Aquatic Safety Service (SSS) Network which has similar facilities in other parts of the world and has been providing the island with Hyperbaric services for over 25 years. Speaking to the attendees was Executive Assistant Paul Cunliffe who reiterated that SSS is in Belize to help support the community.

    The United States and Belize sign agreement on international Narcotics Law
    Belize is once again benefiting from the Central America Regional Security Initiative (CARSI). The country has received over $US35 million in programs and grants from the initiative since 2008. On Thursday, April 7th, United States Ambassador to Belize His Excellency Carlos Moreno, and the Right Honorable Prime Minister Dean Barrow, signed the 16th Amendment to the Letter of Agreement implementing the International Narcotics and Law Enforcement Affairs (INL) program. The signing of the document, which will also provide Belize with $US1.4 million to the ‘Justice Sector Reform,’ took place at the Cabinet Room. This new stream of financial aid, to be disbursed over a period of five years, has the aim to take a holistic approach on the justice system in Belize. According to Ambassador Moreno, the particular amendment dealing with the Belizean justice sector is designed to enhance the country’s capacity to fairly and effectively investigate, as well as process criminal cases in a timely manner. “We hope that this will build Belize’s capacity to investigate and prosecute illicit drug trafficking, money laundering, corruption and other crime,” said Moreno. “This project will also assist the justice system to review, draft, and implement, as well as enforce new and current legislation and regulations.”

    Free dental services for children and adults at polyclinic
    The staff from the Dr. Otto Rodriguez Polyclinic II would like to inform the public that dental volunteers will be providing free dental services such as cleaning, fillings and fluoride applications for both children and adults. The service commences on Monday, April 18th and runs to Friday, April 22nd at the Polyclinic. Hours are: from 8AM to 11:45AM and 1 to 5 PM. The polyclinic encourages the public to take advantage of this special offer as they accommodated their services to fit schedules of the community.

    First ever Land Rover Car Show held in Orange Walk
    Classic car enthusiasts were drawn to the northern side of the country for the first ever Land Rover Car Show. On Sunday, April 10th, the Maracas Bar and Grill, Orange Walk, was the location where these sturdy, legendary vehicles were featured. At the end of the show, trophies were given in the category of ‘people’s pick,’ and for the oldest Rolling Rover as well. Given that the event was the first of its kind, organizers were pleased at the turnout. Plans are in store for annual events in different areas of the country, and as the fun evolves, the idea is to provide more sponsorship opportunities, tables for vendors, and fundraising for selected charitable organizations. The Land Rover has long been part of the Belizean car era, as it was the vehicle of choice of the late Rt. Hon. George Price. The vehicle was also widely used by the government in the 1990’s and it is the favourite of the Belize Defence Force, while conducting their border patrols in the Chiquibul Area of the Cayo District.

    Ambergris Today

    New Regulations on Downtown Deliveries Don’t Sit Well with Businesses
    It has been a hard pill to swallow for business owners in downtown San Pedro, Ambergris Caye, Belize. The San Pedro Town Council is limiting delivery of goods to stores/businesses from 2a.m. to 7a.m. and pushing business owners to make rush adjustments in their operational scheduling and hiring of new staff that could lead to a potential increase in the prices of goods and services for their customers. The abrupt actions of the San Pedro Town Council in implementing these new regulations has led to confusion and local businesses to organize a group to address the many issues that have come up from these new regulations. At a meeting held last night, Wednesday, April 13, 2016, a group that represents a broad spectrum of businesses (that include delivery/cargo service, supermarkets, grocery stores, produce shops, hardware stores) was formed in order write an official letter to and meet with Mayor Daniel Guerrero expressing the concerns of the larger business sector.

    Flashbacks - Remember When there was No Bridge Over Boca del Rio?
    How did we ever manage without a bridge over Boca del Rio!? Remember when there was only this tiny floating platform that used to barge people back and forth from North Ambergris Caye? It was operated by a couple guys who used to manually pull the platform with a rope across the Boca del Rio cut. At times it was loaded with as much as six golf carts and countless bicycles - scary, come to think of it!! It might have toppled over a couple times, can't remember. It took about 15 minutes to do a complete cross over and back, but business was SLOW in North Ambergris and access to the area was not in high demand back then. It's been ten years since the bridge was built in order to accommodate the development in the north and the crossing is one of the busiest areas on the island. Hundreds of vehicles, golf carts, bicycles and pedestrian use the bridge on a daily basis to get to their homes, businesses and access the pristine areas/beaches/resorts that line the coast of North Ambergris Caye. It's an entirely new destiniation up north; go have a look!!

    Arcadia Visit to Belize Generates Global Outreach Initiative
    ix Arcadia faculty members from the College of Health Sciences, School of Education as well as the Dean of the School of Global Business visited the town of San Pedro, on Ambergris Caye, off the mainland of Belize from February 27 through February 28, 2016. All who attended were there to evaluate opportunities for community outreach, student research and education for all three colleges/schools. Arcadia University has a history of global outreach and global social responsibility that has and will continue to pave the way to inspire growth in small communities internationally. Currently, Arcadia is working with leaders from the emerging community of the island of San Pedro, Belize. Through this partnership, Arcadia will assess, evaluate, and provide assistance in various areas of expertise, including health services, education, and business. This is the first of what will hopefully become several global outreach initiatives.

    Misc Belizean Sourcesmzz

    Responsible Reporting & BEST interest of the Child is Key!
    Belize became the fifth country to ratify the UN convention on the Rights of the Child (CRC). This CRC document has since become the most widely ratified convention and human rights instrument in the world. It is testament to our country’s recognition of the importance of caring for our children and nurturing them to be responsible and productive citizens. A commitment that obligated our Government to enact laws and policies that creates the enabling environment for children to flourish and reach their full potential. One of the obligations to our children is to protect them from all forms of exploitation, abuse and neglect. Article 19 of the CRC states that, “Children should be protected from being hurt and mistreated in body or mind”. Keeping this in mind, the recent article, “Girl, 13, said “yes” to 4 men” published in the Amandala newspaper is beyond startling and heartbreaking. According to the article, “Two of four men have been arrested and charged with unlawful sexual intercourse and harm after they engaged a 13 year old girl in sex.” NCFC finds this extremely troubling and is deeply concerned about the welfare of children in general; especially since THE BEST INTEREST OF THE CHILD IS KEY.

    LAGUNA SECA FERRY (Copper Bank/Chunox) will be closed on Monday April 18th to Friday April 22nd from 9:00 A.M. to 4:00 P.M.
    For necessary repairs. By Order of the Chief Engineer Ministry of Works. AVISO al publico en general. El transbordador Laguna Seca estará fuera de servicio comenzando el dia Lunes Abril 18 hasta Viernes Abril 22 desde las 9:00 A.M. a las 4:00 P.M. para poder llevar acabo reparaciones necesarias.

    Banquitas House of Culture (NICH)'s Full Moon Concert
    Look for Banquitas House of Culture (NICH)'s Full Moon Concert featuring the 'Paranda Blues Band' on Saturday April 23rd, 2016 in Orange Walk.

    YWCA's Pageant in Belize City
    On Saturday, April 2nd, a meeting was held with the Belize YWCA ladies from the mainland, at San Pedro House of Culture. This year San Pedro will be represented in the YWCA's Pageant in Belize City on May 14th. Stay tuned for more details about our delegate, who has graciously acepted to represent the island.

    Clarification about the regulations established for deliveries.
    In an effort to solve the traffic issue that San Pedro, Ambergris Caye has been experiencing, the following guidelines are being implemented: (i) Towards this objective, the San Pedro Town Council is strongly encouraging the business community in the downsizing of vehicles by using smaller vehicles; such as, Carry-All golf carts and motorized tricycles, to perform their daily delivery tasks in town. (ii) The areas that are now to be affected are from Tarpon Street to the San Juan Roundabout. This includes Barrier Reef Drive and Pescador Drive. The recommended time for delivery is from 2:00 a.m. to 7:00 a.m. The only vehicles that will be allowed to deliver after 7:00 a.m. are Carry-All golf carts and motorized tricycles, as mentioned above.

    BWS COMMUNITY CONSULTATION IN SAN MATEO
    On Tuesday, April 12, 2016, representatives of the Belize Water Services (BWS) and the Caribbean Development Bank (CDB) visited the community of San Mateo where they hosted a community consultation at the Holy Cross Anglican School. Mr. Roy Young from the CDB mentioned that the CDB has allocated a grant for the proper installation of a sewer system in San Mateo conducted by the BWS; but prior to this, they are reaching out to the community of San Mateo for their feedback in order to have a better understanding of the problems being faced in the community. The objective of the consultation was to get a first hand knowledge of the living conditions that the residents of San Mateo are experiencing on a daily basis and what are their priorities and vulnerabilities when it comes to their surroundings so that they can further mitigate them for the well-being and quality of life of the San Mateo community. Some of the risks and vulnerabilities that were highlighted during the consultation were: Health, Water, Sanitation and Housing concerns.

    DYS Visions of the Future Competitions
    The Department of Youth Services is having an essay and an arts competition. The theme is 'My Belize @49," and both have a 2st, 2nd, and 3rd place cash prizes. "NCFC Visions of the Future Expressive Arts Competition!!! 1st, 2nd, 3rd Place prizes for each of the following categories: MUSIC, RECORDED DRAMA, POETRY and PAINTING/ DRAWING (4'X6')"

    Impressions from Turneffe Atoll
    The Jelly-fish like thing is a "Portuguese Man of War". I have only ever seen a couple of those

    Paradise Theater playing this weekend:
    Mr. Right Ride Along 2 Norm of the North The Invitation

    Channel 7

    Immigration Again!?
    Tonight, 7News has learned that there's another bogus passport scandal brewing at the Immigration and Nationality Department. It involves two passports issued to Chinese nationals: Nina Huang and William Wan. Reports to our newsroom suggest that they acquired their passports with suspect documents, and it is not even known if they ever entered the country. Minister of State with responsibility for Immigration Beverly Castillo has confirmed via text message, quote, "there is some research being carried out to review the validity of those passports," end quote. She did not answer our question via text message as to whether the nationality files were in the system. In the past, bogus passports are often accompanied by missing nationality files.

    PUP Considers Sarstoon Peacekeeping Proposals
    On Tuesday's newscast, we showed you the proposals that the Belize Delegation of diplomats and military leaders made to the Guatemala delegation on a protocol for the Sarstoon River. That happened on last week Friday's meeting at the OAS. It's in the hands of the Guatemalan Government right now, but today the PUP National Executive met to discuss them at Independence Hall. It was a two-hour meeting where the members made comments, asked questions, and the Opposition Leaders Advisors explained the finer points That took almost 2 hours this afternoon, and at the end of the meeting, we spoke with the Party Chairman and one of those advisors this evening. Here's what they told us about the meeting: Daniel Ortiz: "What is the nature of the discussion sir?" Eamon Courtenay, Advisor, Belize/Guatemala Relations - PUP: "An update on the Sartsoon, Belize/Guatemala generally, the role of the party in process. As you know we are so far going along with the government in trying to resolve this on a national basis and party members have some concerns about that. We discussed it. But what I am emphasizing was information is that the national executive and the national party council is going to set the policies and the decisions of the party. So it was getting information in order to be able to make decisions."

    Credit Card Questions From Ministry for General Jones
    There was a few tense moments recently between the BDF and the Ministry of National Security - and it's all about an audit of the BDF, where credit card charges were flagged by the accountant general's office. The credit card, as we understand it, is issued to the office of the BDF Commander, in this case, General David Jones. Reports to us say that CEO Lovell sent a query to the General Jones asking him to respond to an internal inquiry about some specific charges on the card. Lovell told us it's a normal administrative matter, but the letter was leaked out to the press to suggest that there had been some accusation of wrongdoing, which is not the case. General Jones says that the charges were made from a fund which the BDF manages directly, and it is used to purchase urgently needed items which the government can't authorize immediately. He says that this has been clarified with the Ministry, and adds that whoever leaked the memo to media were simply doing it to make mischief.

    Three Men Charged For Roaring Creek Attack
    3 men were charged today for robbery and attempted murder in connection with the weekend's Roaring Creek attack. Those men are Roaring Creek residents 38 year old Sherman Thomas, 22 year old Kimahl Dawson and Cotton Tree resident 19 year old Devon Brooks. As we have reported, Luis Ortiz and a friend were hanging out at La Cabana on Sunday April 10th. They left the night club at around 3 in the morning but another friend asked for a ride, and that's when 3 other acquaintances also hopped in the back seat. Now as Ortiz reached the Roaring Creek cemetery, one of the 3 men struck Ortiz's friend in the head, beat him up and dashed him in the cemetery. He survived but Ortiz was driven to the riverside near the Agripino Cawich Bridge, bludgeoned and both he and his car were dumped in the river. Now, we told you at the top of this story that those 3 men were charged for attempted murder so why not for Ortiz's murder?

    Should DCP Segura Slide Into The Sunset?
    Yesterday Government settled with the family of Yolanda Valencia. She was the victim of a fatal traffic accident involving Deputy Commissioner of Police Miguel Segura. Government settled for $70 thousand dollars. But, by doing that, is Government admitting liability, and by extension Segura's guilt? We asked the man who is still Deputy Segura's boss, Police commissioner Allen Whylie:... Allen Whylie, Commissioner of Police : "Well I don't think it's a matter of the deputy settling with the family. The matter was settled by the government of Belize. The government of Belize was being sued and I guess in their wisdom of the legal persons, a settlement was arrived at." Emanuel Pech: "Many have disputed that this is in turn somewhat of a guilty statement on the part of the government that we were at fault."

    Still No Charges For Post Office Embezzler
    In December, we told you about the second case of theft from the Post Office where over $20,000 had been embezzled by an employee who's name has still not been revealed. Well, today, the police department finally released the details of the report which says that on between the months of July and December, $20,610 was stolen from the Post office Express Mail section. The cashier reportedly did not hand in all the monies collected during a normal working day. They suspected that this same employee produced a fraudulent spread sheet to cover the shortages, so that the numbers appeared to match up.

    Tourism By The Numbers
    Tourism figures continue to climb. That's according to BTB's quarterly report released earlier today. It shows that Belize had an increase in overnight visitors this year in months of January, February and March when compared to 2015 by 24%, 18.5% and 10% respectively. March specifically was an extraordinary month for tourism as it saw over 43 thousand overnight visitors- a first for Belize, since the most a single month has ever recorded is 40 thousand visitors. Cruise arrivals for the first quarter also saw a positive uptick with the exception of January which saw a 19.5% downturn. BTB said this was as a result of 13 fewer cruise calls in comparison to 2015. But the following months of February and March saw an increases of 3.7% and 4.1% respectively. Overall there was a 4.5% decrease in cruise arrivals however BTV remains hopeful that the numbers for cruise arrivals will continue to grow throughout the remainder of the year- and even hope to reach their 1 million passenger mark for 2016.

    No Charge For Suchite Driver
    Police have not brought charges in the fatal accident that killed 19 year old Dangriga resident Sara Suchite. They are still investigating the circumstances surrounding the collision. As we reported, she was crossing the Stann Creek Valley road at mile one and a half when she was knocked down by an oncoming SUV driven by Elroy Coleman. The impact launched the teenager into the air, and she landed a distance away. She died on the spot. Her brother told us that she was already across the street when the fast moving SUV struck her on the shoulder of the road. But, police say he was not there to see what happened, and they cannot accept hearsay. They continue to gather statements.

    Cops Need Help With Anwar Vernon's Identity
    A week has passed since Anwar Vernon was discovered badly injured in a drain on Raccoon Street Extension. One whole week and police are still no closer to solving the case. Vernon died 2 days ago, and police never got to talk to him about what happened. A postmortem is yet to be concluded on the body of Vernon but in the meantime police are appealing to the public to assist them in any information about what lead to Vernon's injuries and his ultimate death. ACP Chester Williams - OC, Eastern Division South: "We always say to people if you have any information pertains to any investigation that we have ongoing to please feel free, come forward. If you don't want to come to us, you can always use the 0-800-922-TIPS number and give your information. You will remain anonymous and the information comes to us and we move from there."

    Abused Teenager's Strange Death In Dangriga
    An 18 year old girl is dead and Dangriga police can't say if she was murdered or if it was a sudden death. Police told us today that the teenager from Sarawee Village died yesterday but it could be either the result of an abusive relationship with her 48-year-old common law husband, or as a result of kidney failure. Now how do these 2 elements factor into this case? Well, reports are that the common law husband had beat her up on Saturday April 9th leaving bruises on her face, neck and chest. She was hospitalized but police can't confirm if it was as a result of the beating or her acute kidney disease. Police say that she had a long history of health problems and that she had been suffering with kidney disease from the age of 10. They told us that they have tried to speak to the doctors to get more information on her medical history but they were a bit reluctant because of the patient - doctor confidentiality agreement.

    Southside Crime Down, Mostly
    Very regularly on the news, we report about different high-profile crimes, but if taken out of context, it could be perceived that major crime continues unabated. Well, today, Southside Commander Chester Williams told us the press that the crime statistics, except in 2 categories are down when compared to last year's quarterly report. ACP Chester Williams - OC, Eastern Division South: "For the most part we are below where we were last year with the exception of burglaries. We have had a serious issue with burglaries, particularly in the month of February and March and the burglaries were plaguing us in the St. Martin's De Porres area. And as a result of that we have reconfigured our patrols in the St. Martin's are with a view to see how we can alleviate that issue and we are hoping that with the new strategy we are now employed in that area, that we will see a decrease in burglaries for the coming month. For this month that we are in the month of April. Other than burglaries, the other area of increase would have been unlawful sexual intercourse and again, we have no control over that. Those are what you would call the non-preventable. To look at our statistics comparing to last year I think that we are doing quite well. We are not above where we were except in the area of burglaries."

    Woman Says Cops Barged In, Caught Her Exposed
    Police barged in to her house while she slept naked. That is what one City woman is alleging. The incident occurred sometime around 9:30 this morning and Denise Dougal a tenant at 48 South Street says that she was resting inside her room. She lives there with her husband and daughter but was alone at that time, when three male police officers forced their way into her house. When we got to the scene special branch officers were still combing the yard. Dougal told us that in her 7 years of living there, she has never been subjected to that sort of disrespect by police officers. Dougal remains adamant that no one at that house is involved in anything illicit. We understand that the operation was being carried out by the Special Branch Unit from Belmopan. We don't know if anything was found but what we can tell you is that the officers were searching from 10 am up until 2:30 this afternoon.

    Weed Gets High On A Plane
    Caye Caulker Police are reporting tonight that they intercepted marijuana at a local airline company. They've not specified if the drugs were intended to be flown out by airmail, or if someone sent it from the mainland to Caye Caulker, but they're now in possession of these 5 parcels of marijuana. The police say that Customs and BAHA personnel were conducting checks for uncustomed goods and illegal items. When they checked the airline's cargo, they found this white ice box on a shelf. They opened it and found these 5 packages which were emitting the strong aroma of cannabis. The drugs were handed over to the police who are trying to find out the identity of the sender and the intended receiver.

    Emerging Writer Launches Ambitious First Book
    Love, lust, tragedy and inner darkness: those are some of themes that Belizean writer Kesha Peyrefitte explores in her new book entitled "What if…I Love Her and other Stories". For many writers, especially Belizean - it is challenging and even intimidating to find one's voice and unique style in the expanse of Art. But today at her book launch at the National Heritage Library in Belmopan, Peyrefitte told us that she found and embraced her voice and calling at a young age. Courtney Weatherburne has the story. Courtney Weatherburne reporting: That song of admiration led the launch of Belize's most recent literary piece "What if...I love her and other Stories" by Kesha Peyrefitte. Emil Pulido, Author Presenter: "First Ms. Keisha waxes sweet and figurative with lines like "your fairy wings leave their dust at night." or the charming truly Belizean simile "her body is hills and valleys like the Maya mountains of down south." or the personification "I hate that our roofs cries when it rains and there are cardboard pieces over the wall to stop her tears.""

    JB Putting Out Fires In OW North
    On Monday we told you about the letter from the PUP Orange Walk North committee to PUP Leader John Briceno. They complained about the unconstitutional removal of their candidate Monchie Cervantez from the party executive. Well, Party Leader John Briceno has had to go put out that fire. Reports say that he met with members of the Orange Walk North committee over the weekend, to put them at ease. They are also concerned that Briceno who does not see Monchie Cervantez, as an ally, wants to replace him as standard bearers in a seat that is now very much in play since Gaspar Vega stepped down. And while that is the local picture, we know that nationally, Deputy Party Leader Julius Espat has not been happy with Briceno's decision to purge the executive of those who did not support him in the leadership convention.

    Cops Congratulated
    Earlier we spoke to you about police complaints in the City and supposed bad cops. And while it may be true that among the ranks of the police department there are some that are considered "bad cops", it's not true for the majority of cops. In that spirit today South Side police held a short ceremony where they honored some 22 "good" officers and one civilian staff for their outstanding performance within the department. Commissioner of Police Allen Whylie gave the remarks. The 22 officers and one civilian were awarded with a certificate and a small monitory gift.

    NEW YEAR'S CLASSIC ADJUST...
    Doping suspensions have shaken up the local cycling scene. The first and second place finisher in the KREM New Year's Cycling Classic have been stripped of their places and prizes. Greg Lovell who came in first and Byron Pope who came in second have been removed from the race's final classification, and replaced with third place finisher Joel Borland, who is now first, Justin Williams who goes from fourth to second, and Johnny Valencia, who is now third.

    Channel 5

    An Audit of the B.D.F.’s Account; How are Military Finances Being Spent?
    Why is the Belize Defense Force the subject of an intensive investigation commissioned by the Ministry of National Security? And why is the Ministry of Finance, the Accountant General and [...]

    Deputy ComPol Segura Remains on Interdiction Following Fatal RTA
    Deputy Commissioner of Police Miguel Segura remains on interdiction with half pay, following a fatal road traffic accident along the George Price Highway on August sixteenth, 2014.  The deadly head-on [...]

    $26,000 Embezzled from Post Office by Cashier
    In December of 2015, we reported on the embezzlement of over ten thousand dollars in cash from the Post Office in Belize City. Second-grade cashier from Orange Walk, Sergio Patt, [...]

    3 Men are Charged with Attempted Murder of Jose Gonzales
    Three persons were formally charged late this evening in Belmopan for the attempted murder of Jose Gonzales. Gonzales was along with Maya Mopan resident, Luis Ortiz on Sunday morning just [...]

    Is There Another Passport Scandal Brewing at the Immigration Department?
    Is there another Pennergate? There is an unconfirmed report that an investigation is taking place at the Immigration Department where two Belize passports were reportedly issued to Chinese nationals who [...]

    Criminal Minds Belize Episode wasn’t Really Shot in Belize
    We’re pretty willing to bet that a lot of viewers tuned into CBS Wednesday night for the first airing of this week’s Criminal Minds. It’s a popular show featuring a [...]

    Huong Chong Park Returns to Court for Her Passport
    On February fifth, 2016 Korean Huong Chong Park received Supreme Court bail after more than a week in jail. Park was charged for the little known crime of Abetment of [...]

    Taxi Driver Javier Saragossa Convicted for Reckless Driving
    Forty-four-year old Javier Saragossa, a Belize City taxi man, picked up a conviction for reckless driving but he must go to trial for the offense of failure to provide a [...]

    5 Parcels of Marijuana Confiscated at Caye Caulker Airstrip
    It’s relatively common knowledge that high-quality marijuana is being systematically brought in from Mexico and distributed to local areas heavily trafficked by tourists – like San Pedro and Caye Caulker [...]

    A Home Invasion in Camalote Nets Thieves Firearm and Jewelry
    There was a home invasion in the Camalote Village, Cayo District, where burglars got away with a gun and jewelry valued at over five thousand dollars. On Tuesday, Roaring Creek [...]

    Human Rights Report Indicates that Police Abuse is Rampant
    The United States Embassy in Belize has released its 2015 Human Rights Report.  The comprehensive study which looks at human rights violations highlights excessive use of force by the police, [...]

    B.T.B. Says Quarterly Tourist Arrivals are Up in 2016
    The B.T.B. is forecasting that it will be reaching the million mark number of cruise tourism visitors to the jewel this year. It has already contracted the Brighter Group firm [...]

    Helicopters Gifted to B.D.F. are Being Assembled at Price Barracks
    In January 2015, the Government of Taiwan publicly announced that it will be gifting the Government two helicopters that are required to expand Belize’s military training program. That announcement was [...]

    Taiwanese Ambassador Speaks on Helicopter Donation
    According to Ambassador Ho, the helicopters will be used for emergency evacuations and to crack down on illegal drug trafficking or illegal human trafficking.   Benjamin Ho, Taiwanese Ambassador to [...]

    Police Officers Awarded for Outstanding Performance
    The top brass of the police was present today for an award ceremony recognizing its finest officers who performed impressively in the first quarter of this year. More than twenty [...]

    Ministry of Health Continues to Probe for ZIKA in Belize
    The Ministry of Health is working overtime in southern Belize where samples are being collected by personnel to be sent for testing at the Caribbean Public Health Agency (CARPHA) laboratory [...]

    Healthy Living Looks at a New Physical Education Program
    An interesting and totally rewarding program is taking place in our neighborhood. The House of Shotokan has teamed up with Nazarene High School to develop a physical education program as [...]

    CTV3

    Heart And Hands Mission To Conduct Free Medical Surgery
    Many are the medical missions who have visited Belize over the past years. In fact, just last year our jewel saw its share of visits when New Horizon, Mission Project for Belize, Partners for Belize, and Medical Mission for Belize came to render assistance to the community who have hard time paying for medical attention or even constructing buildings. Today CTV3 was made to understand that another medical mission is head to Belize to carry our works specifically in the Northern Region. Hands and Hearts Medical Mission will be arriving in Belize on Sunday the 17th to do general surgeries and their team will be comprised of 35 Medical personnel, says Chief of Staff at the Corozal Community Hospital, Doctor Jorge Sajia. Dr. Jorge Sajia –Chief of Staff Corozal Community Hospital: “We are having the Heart and Hands Mission coming in April 17th to do general surgeries for the Northern part specifically. The mission is bringing a total of 35 staff members; this includes anesthesia, surgeons, nursing, pharmacist for the Corozal community Hospital and Orange Walk Northern Regional Hospital.”

    BTB Releases First Quarter Statistics For 2016
    The Belize Tourism Board which is dedicated to building and developing tourism in the most economically and environmentally sustainable manner released the first quarter statistics for the months of January through March of this year 2016 which calculates to about a 16.9% growth in overnight arrivals of tourists in Belize. In January, a total of 38, 274 tourists visited the country and stayed overnight while 37,624 tourists arrived in the month of February resulting in an increase of 24% and 18.5% respectively as opposed to last year in which a sum of 30,858 tourists visited the country in January and 31,754 arrived in February. This marks the very first time that the total amount of overnight arrivals to Belize has surpassed 75,000 visits within the first two months of a specific year. In comparison to last year, there were only 39,136 visitors in the month of March and this year, however, there were a total of 43,063 overnight tourist visitors making it an increase of 10% highlighting the high tourism season in our country. BTB also adds that this is the first time in history that the total amount of arrivals exceeds 40,000 in a single month.

    LOVE FM

    CEO Asks BDF Commander For Answers on Queries from Audit Team
    There are some troubles in the administration at the Belize Defense Force headquarters as the Commander is being asked to respond to some queries brought about by an internal audit team over what has been deemed as irregularities. Love News understands that an internal audit was ordered by the higher ups in the Ministry of […]

    Human Rights Report Highlights Infractions and Challenges in Belize
    The 2015 Human Rights Report has been released and has highlighted several infractions and challenges experienced particularly in the area of law enforcement and prosecution in Belize. The 23-page document goes into detail on certain reports and incidents and states in its Executive Summary that the most important human rights abuses were done via excessive […]

    UNICEF Speaks on Recent Cases of Abuse Against Children; NCFC Condemns Media Report
    There have been two recent incidents involving minors who were sexually abused by adults. There was the child in southern Belize who alleges that she was molested by her stepfather and then there was the 13-year-old girl who was raped by four men. These are only two of several reported and unreported cases where children […]

    Was Settlement an Admission of Guilt in GOB vs Valencia Family?
    In August 2014, Deputy Commissioner of Police Miguel Segura was involved in a fatal road traffic accident that claimed the life of fifty five year old Yolanda Valencia. Her family took the Government to court seeking compensation since according to them, Yolanda was the breadwinner for the family. Yesterday, Government agreed to settle the matter […]

    Tourism Figures on an Upward Trend for Belize
    Good news is coming from the Belize Tourism Board. Today BTB shared with the media their latest figures for the first quarter of the year, which includes January, February and March. Belize continues to see an increase in the figures. The cruise industry had a small decline due to thirteen missed calls from cruise ships […]

    Work Begins on Making Belize a Leading Sustainable Destination
    We recently told you about a new Marketing and Public Relations company that had adopted Belize. The Brighter Group is one of the biggest independent travel tourism public relations and marketing consultancies in the United Kingdom. The goals for marketing will be the United Kingdom, France and Germany since most tourist arrivals to Belize are […]

    PUP Establishes Committee for Village Council Elections
    The upcoming village council elections were also tabled at last week’s meeting as the Chairman explained. HENRY USHER “We’ve put together a national campaign team and that team is the one charged with looking at the village councils and making decisions as to the way forward. The campaign team once it’s finished with that assessment […]

    Removal of ‘Munchi’ as PUP Treasurer Not Unconstitutional
    As your may have heard in our newscast last week, the PUP held a National Executive meeting where the issue surrounding Cervantes and his removal as Treasurer came up. While the National Party Council is yet to ratify such a move, the Executive Committee of the Orange Walk North in a letter to the Chairman […]

    Ambassador Shoman Updates PUP on Differendum
    Today there was a meeting at the PUP’s headquarters in Belize City; only it was not to discuss internal politics but rather it was an informational session where former Foreign Minister Assad Shoman was apprising the party on the recent meetings held with Guatemala as they relate to the Belize – Guatemala differendum. At the […]

    What Killed Jennifer Nunez Andino? Health Issues or Domestic Abuse?
    A woman from the Stann Creek District is dead and her family is looking for answers. Correspondent Harry Arzu has more in this report. HARRY ARZU “Dangriga Police have one man detained as they investigate the circumstances surrounding the death of 18-year-old, Jennifer Andino. Reports are that Andino who was a 4th form student at […]

    The Guardian

    Teenager dies after being knocked down in Dangriga
    Police are investigating a traffic mishap on the Southern Highway that resulted in the death of 19-year-old Sara Suchite on Tuesday, April 12. According to police reports, around 10:30 a.m. on Tuesday, Suchite was knocked down at mile 1 ½ on the Southern Highway just after exiting a taxi. According to eyewitnesses, she exited a taxi and was trying to run across the highway when a black SUV was approaching from the direction of the hospital. The vehicle was being driven at the time by ambulance driver, Elroy Coleman, 36, of Silk Grass Village. Suchite was not able to make it across the road in time and Coleman was not able to avoid hitting her. She received numerous head and body injuries. Suchite died shortly after impact.

    Belize’s Eleven Point Proposal to decrease tensions in Sarstoon river
    The escalation of tension in the Sarstoon River between the Guatemalan military and civilian and military personnel of Belize has forced the highest officials of both countries to the discussion table to come up with rules of engagement for the area. A meeting was held on Friday, April 8, with the foreign ministers, ambassadors and generals of both countries. The Organization of American States was present to observe what they hope is the formation of a modus vivendi. A modus vivendi is an agreement that allows conflicting parties to coexist peacefully until a final settlement can be reached. Representatives of the Barrow Administration, the Belize Defense Force and the Opposition met to draft proposals that were presented to Guatemala on Friday. Hon. Wilfred Elrington, Minister of Foreign Affairs, said, “Our team’s overall aims for the negotiations over the Sarstoon were to reach an agreement with Guatemala as early as possible - the implementation of which will not be delayed by Guatemalan administrative procedures or legislative requirements; to ensure that any agreement reached would protect Belize’s position and maintain peace and stability in the area until such time as Guatemala’s claim is resolved; and to ensure that the OAS has a role in helping the two countries in maintaining peace and stability in the area.”

    PM Barrow and U.S. ambassador sign agreement for 6.45million dollars to aid law enforcement
    On Friday, April 8, Prime Minister Dean Barrow, and H.E. Carlos Moreno, the US Ambassador to Belize, signed the 16 amendment to the Letter of Agreement, which implements the International Narcotics and Law Enforcement Affairs (INL). This program is funded under the Central American Regional Security Initiative (CARSI). Since 2008, the US Government has provided over 35 million dollars in programs and grants to Belize, and with this amendment, the US agreed to provide yet another 6.45 million US dollars. Both the Prime Minister and the Ambassador have agreed that the funding will be used on projects, namely, improvements in border inspection, Vetted Units, Capacity Enhancement, Justice Sector reform, and Community Policing. Each of these programs are important to the country’s continued security concerns but of important note is the justice sector reform.

    All roads leading to the National Agricultural and Trade Show in Belmopan
    The National Agricultural and Trade Show (NATS) occurs once a year and it is the largest show of its kind anywhere in Belize, which brings agricultural enthusiasts, farmers, students and others unto one place. Plans for the NATS event continues apace with much fervor. The National Agriculture and Trade Show Committee under the auspices of the Ministry of Agriculture, Forestry, Fisheries, the Environment and Sustainable Development has announced that the dates for the National Agriculture & Trade Show will be on April 29th, 30th and May 1, 2016. This year the upgrades to the grounds are concentrated in the “agriculture zone”. A new garden for year round demonstration and training for schools is being established. New barns are being constructed for livestock display that have been designed and built by Ministry of Agriculture personnel. “We are expecting a record turn out again…,” says Roberto Harrison, who is Belize’s Chief Agricultural officer and the Chairman of the National Agricultural Show Committee.

    New Belize sign unveiled in Belize City
    In September of 2014, a first of its kind Belize sign was constructed and placed at the Buttonwood Bay park in Belize City. The idea to build and place the sign came from attorney at law Steve Perera. It was a great success and now the idea is being replicated in other parts of the city. Through sponsorship from businessman Hysam Diab, on Saturday April 9th a new sign was installed near the Baron Bliss lighthouse in the Fort George Division. Over the course of this week the sign was painted and on Wednesday it was officially inaugurated by the Mayor of Belize City, Darrell Bradley and the Belize City Council as well as Perera.

    Myrtle sues Guardian: claims she was insulted
    Albert Vaughn: Call, we got a call. Caller: I just mi wah get teh name ah di man mek I report ah to the creator Myrtle Palacio: No, No, Just light wah candle over eh head, baby, eh name Marcello Windsor, you could check the register of electors fi eh birth date and light dah damn candle over eh head. We have to do that. You understand, I wah tell you later weh color fi use. (All Laugh) Myrtle Palacio: “Dah that you have to do with dah kind. you know what I mean Albert? Hmmm, O.K. you know. No confidence in that, no confidence. He should ah hang his head in shame. Marcello Windsor”. Those were the words uttered by Myrtle Palacio, on the Positive Vibez talk show on January 23, 2014. These utterances were the culmination of a protracted discourse between herself and talk show hosts Albert Vaughn and Marshall Nunez in which the Returning Officer for the Cayo North bi-elections, Marcello Windsor was berated and his competence was called into question.

    Myrtle’s flame burns out
    Just a few days after the November 4th election and after Francis had stepped down , it was reported that the then PUP Secretary General Mrs. Myrtle Palacio had also stepped down. The reports at the time were that she was about to write another book. From what we heard at the time it was to be a Biography. However that resignation was short lived because like her former boss Francis she too must have gotten a dream and had a change of heart and once again returned to be the Secretary General. Readers may recall the UGLY spectacle that was played out on tv when Henry Charles claimed that he was the defacto PUP Leader who was in charge of the party and as such was also in charge of the party’s electoral process. At the time Henry Charles appeared to be on the losing side since he was supporting Johnny who seemed to have been the underdog. So Myrtle was quick to put Henry Charles in his place, scolding him like a little schoolboy, letting him know that she was in charge.

    GOB settles with Valencia family after accident involving Deputy Commissioner of Police Miguel Segura
    In August of 2014, Deputy Commissioner of Police Miguel Segura was involved in a traffic accident in which 54 year-old Yolanda Valencia lost her life and Yanie Cu was seriously injured. At the time Segura was driving his police issued vehicle when he slammed head on into a taxi being driven by Cu who had Valencia as his passenger. The accident happened between miles 70 and 71 on the outskirts of Succotz Village in the Cayo District at around 5:35 a.m., on Saturday, August 16. 54 year-old Succotz Resident Yolanda Consuelo Valencia was in a blue Toyota Corolla taxi, which was being driven by her close relative, 28 year-old Yanie Evan Cu. They were heading to the San Ignacio market for Valencia to sell her vegetables. They had a head-on collision with Deputy Commissioner Segura, who was driving a government issued Nissan Pathfinder. He was heading back to his home in Benque Viejo Town, after a night in San Ignacio.

    Special Olympics held around Belize
    The Ministry of Education, Youth, Sports and Culture in collaboration with Special Olympics Belize has announced that it is pleased to be a part of this year’s Fun Run event countrywide! The Ministry through its Special Education Program and the involvement of our Education Itinerant Officers (EIOs) continue to support Special Olympics Belize in an effort to provide year–round sports training and athletic competition in a variety of Olympic–type sports for children and adults with physical and intellectual disabilities. Importantly, these activities allow the participation of the community (police, teachers, families, church, civilians, and public officers) to become a part of the change that is needed to promote acceptance and inclusion.

    UDP Leaders
    The resignation of Honorable Gaspar Vega as the 1st Deputy leader of the great United Democratic Party set in motion a series of events including but not limited to the announcement of two dynamic leaders interested to fill the vacant post. Both candidates set out of the starting gate at an accelerated pace. What makes this competition an interesting one is the fact that both candidates are fully equipped for the job at hand, both men possess the necessary skills, qualification and leadership qualities needed to carry on with the legacy of our great leader, the Honorable Dean Oliver Barrow. It is commendable that both men have been behaving in singular gentleman-like manner and none has been attacking the character of the other. The campaign has been kept very positive and no mudslinging is evidenced… not that there is any mud that can be slung. Also notable is the fact that both men are long time colleagues but more than this they are longtime friends.

    Dead man found in Rio Hondo river in Corozal
    The body of 51 year-old Gregory Espinosa, a farmer from the Corozal District, was found on Friday, April 8 on the Banks of the Rio Hondo. He had been shot and left on the banks of the river. Corozal police found him on the river side, which is a part of the Village of Santa Rosa, the northernmost village of the country. The officers observed pellet wounds to the right side of the chest, and a large hole to his lower rib cage, which appeared to have been inflicted by a bullet. His loader and pick-up truck were found a short distance away from where Espinosa’s body was found.

    Guatemalan Victor Sagastume busted with crack cocaine
    Guatemalan national, Victor Sagastume, is in the Belize Central Prison for several offenses after he was busted with crack cocaine on Sunday, April 10. Police were on mobile patrol in the Taylor’s Alley area on Sunday when their attention was drawn towards Sagastume. The officers approached and informed him that a search would be conducted on him. As police tried to search him, Sagastume began to act disorderly. Officers subdued him and found a green du-rag which was opened in front of him. The du-rag contained a white substance which proved to be crack cocaine. He was arrested and taken to Precinct One Police Station. Sagastume escaped shortly after arriving at the station but was captured just up the street. He bit the finger of a police officer who was trying to arrest him.

    Shakeem Humes to stand trial for attempted murder
    Shakeem Humes, 23, will have to stand trial in the June session of the Supreme Court after a Preliminary Inquiry concluded on Thursday, April 7, proved that there is sufficient evidence for him to face charges of attempted murder, use of deadly means of harm and others. Humes is facing charges of attempted murder, use of deadly means of harm, dangerous harm and wounding upon woman police corporal, Christine Avila, and her boyfriend, Joseph Debride. At around 9:40 p.m. on Saturday, September 12, 2015, police responded to a shooting incident on Curassow Street where they found Debride suffering from a gunshot wound to the neck. Avila reported to responding officers that a man they know well approached them and told them he was armed.

    Jack Charles accuses employees of stealing triple A batteries
    Businessman Jitendra Chawla, better known as Jack Charles, surely needs advice on how to convince the public that his love for Belizeans is genuine. The wealthy grocer is back in the news and this time it is because he is accusing three employees of theft. Chawla went to police on Friday, April 8, and reported that at around 4 p.m. three of his employees stole a pack of triple A batteries valued at $208. The employees accused of theft by Chawla are deaf/mute Oliver Flowers, 29, of Periwinkle Street, David Fuller, 20, of Eve Street, and Jose Moralez, 29, of Orange Walk Town.

    Daughter attacks father with axe in Sandhill
    A daughter hacked her 84-year-old father in the head with an axe after a domestic dispute in Sandhill Village on Sunday, April 10. According to police report, sometime between 9 and 9:30 a.m. on Sunday, Nicholas Ozaeta, 84, opened his house door and walked onto his veranda to relax with a cup of coffee. As he was looking towards the highway, he suddenly heard a loud noise and realized that he had been hit in the head. He then fell over his veranda railing and went unconscious. Ozaeta said when he woke up he saw an axe lying on the ground next to him. He didn’t see who hit him but said he remembers that it was his son who picked him up and took him to the hospital. Ozaeta told police he suspects that it was his daughter because only he and his daughter Lily were at home at the time. He told police that two years ago Lily had choked his wife and threatened to burn down their house.

    Belmopan Bandits eliminate Cayo Western Ballaz from any playoffs
    The National Elite Basketball League competition continued over the last weekend with a number of games across the country. On Friday 8 April, 2016, at the UB Gymnasium in the City of Belmopan, the Belmopan Bandits eliminated the Cayo Western Ballaz from any chance of making the post season this year when it defeated them by the score of 73-57. The top scorers for the Belmopan Bandits were Jarrel Velasquez with 21 points, 3 rebounds, 5 assists and a steal; Nick Brown with 16 points, 11 rebounds, and 2 steals and Kyle Pascascio with 14 points, 9 rebounds, 3 assists and 3 steals. For the Cayo Western Ballaz, the top scorers were Brandon Flowers with 22 points and 9 rebounds; and Jamal Harris 11 points, 2 rebounds and 3 steals.

    CODICADER Launch
    In the month of February Honorable Elodio Aragon, Minister of State in the Ministry of Education, Youth, Sports and Culture, travelled to Costa Rica to pen an agreement to host the CODICADER games in Belize. CODICADER (Consejo del Istmo Centroamericano de Deportes y Recreacion) is the The Central American Council of Sports & Recreation Games and is an organ of the Central American Integration System (SICA) whose goal is to contribute to the strengthening of integration, solidarity and peace between our peoples of member countries. For years Belize has been sending its young athletes to compete in various disciplines and we have been bringing championship medals consistently in sports such as track and field, softball and basketball. These games have been played in all the member countries including Guatemala, Honduras, El Salvador, Nicaragua, Costa Rica and Panama. This year is Belize’s turn to host the games. These games will host student athletes between the ages of 6 to12 years. They will participate in table tennis, football, basketball and volleyball.The competition will be held across the country simultaneously in Orange Walk, San Ignacio, Belmopan and Belize City.

    Police United and the Belmopan Bandits move closer to the finals
    The Premier League of Belize Closing Season Tournament commenced its Playoff round on Saturday 9th April, 2016, with two games on the schedule. At the Isidoro Beaton Stadium in the City of Belmopan, the Belmopan Bandits successfully defended its home turf when it edged out the Belize Defence Force by the score of 2-1. The Belmopan Bandits were the first to get onto the scoreboard when Kervin Johnson scored the 1st goal of the game in the 17th minute of play to give the Belmopan Bandits a 1-0 lead. The lead was further extended when Ian Gaynair scored his team’s 2nd goal of the game in the 22nd minute of play for a 2-0 lead. The first half of the game ended in a 2-0 in favour of the Belmopan Bandits. It was not until well into the second half of the game that the Belize Defence Force was able to make it onto the scoreboard when Ricky Ricketts scored his team’s only goal of the game in the 73rd minute of play to cut his team’s deficit to 1 goal. However, at the sound of the long whistle in was indeed a 2-1 victory for the Belmopan Bandits.

    Calvary Temple boys are undefeated in Belize City Primary Schools softball competition
    The Belize City Primary Schools Softball Competition continued on Tuesday 12 April, 2016, with four games on the schedule. In the girls’ competition, Central Christian School defeated Buttonwood Bay Nazarene School by the score of 22-9. The winning pitcher was Leoneli Sedacy and the losing pitcher was Varania Wilson. In the second game in the girls’ competition, St. John Vianney School won over the previously unbeaten St. Luke Methodist School by the score of 12-4. The winning pitcher was Shantae Williams and the losing pitcher was Samantha Foreman. In the first of two games in the boys’ competition, Buttonwood Bay Nazarene won over Central Christian School by the score of 12-9. The winning pitcher was James Guevara and the losing pitcher was Travis Stevens.

    Road being made safer for students in Cayo
    Students and residents will soon be benefiting from a cemented section of Bullet Tree Falls Road in the Cayo District. A section of dirt road at the entrance of the Sacred Heart Primary School in San Ignacio Town was being cemented on Wednesday by workers from the San Ignacio and Santa Elena Town Council. Some 150 feet of dirt road had formerly been troublesome with dust to both students and residents; especially during the dry season. With revenues from property tax and trade licenses, the San Ignacio and Santa Elena Town Council has now seen it fit to allocate ten thousand dollars to cement that section of road in front of Sacred Heart Primary School in San Ignacio Town. At the same time, a pedestrian crossing will be constructed for the safety of the Sacred Heart Primary School students and other pedestrians.

    New market for Corozal Town opens
    Corozal Town now has a wonderful new market that will provide vendors opportunities to foster and enhance their livelihoods while residents benefit from a centralized location to shop and socialize. The rehabilitated Corozal Town Market Annex and surrounding streets built by the Government of Belize were inaugurated on Friday, April 8. The market covers an area of over 220 square meters. It consists of 15 spacious stalls with all necessary hygienic amenities. To improve the visitors’ experience, surrounding streets were upgraded as well. First Street and Sixth Streets were paved so pedestrians and motorists are now benefiting from smooth road surfaces. Traffic flows easier in the area due to the upgrades. Residents are extremely pleased.

    City Councillors start community service at Grace Primary School
    Over the weekend, Councilors Hyacinth Latchman-Cuellar and Jason Edwards led a team of volunteers from the Child Advisory Body and the Works Department of the Belize City Council on a community service mission to Grace Primary School. According to Councilor Latchman-Cuellar, she was approached by Councilor Jason Edwards for them to do something positive at Grace Primary School. Edwards attended Grace Primary in his childhood and always tries to give back. After consulting with Mayor Darrell Bradley and other councilors, a decision was made to start with the painting of two classrooms. The two councilors worked along with employees of the Council and children from the Child Advisory Body to paint the two Standard Five Classrooms, Augustine and Hernandez. On Saturday and Sunday they painted the walls, ceiling and doors. The colours chosen by the children from the classrooms were blue and yellow.

    Johnny throws PUP Constitution and National Executives out the window
    We have seen over the past few days how Johnny Briceno has been throwing out duly elected members of the PUP’s National Executive, (Vaughn Gill - Deputy Communications Director- Western Caucus; Anthony Sylvester - Legal Advisor; and Ramon ‘Monchie’ Cervantes -Treasurer). He in effect is throwing out most of those members that did not support him in the Leadership convention and is only keeping disregard those who did not support him, Julius and Kareem. We presume that if Johnny stays true to form even their days as members are numbered. Already he has installed a 5th deputy to the PUP in the form of Cordel Hyde, in effect diminishing the powers of the aforementioned two. PUP observers are saying that what he is doing is going totally against the PUP’s constitution. However to make sure we got our facts straight as to how the PUP selects officers, we had to go their constitution. According to article 13 (1) There shall be a National Executive of the party which shall be ELECTED by the National Convention and which shall be responsible to the National Party Council. It then goes on to list who those members should be.

    New mar‘Griga’s New and Improved St. Vincent Street Re-opensket for Corozal Town opens
    A few months ago the UDP Dangriga Town Council noticed the terrible and deteriorating state of Saint Vincent Street and chose to do something about it. The council didn’t just think about fixing the street as previous councils have done; but chose to make it permanent with concrete to the tune of close to $73,000.00. Keeping in mind, that had the work been contracted out, it could have cost the council $71,000.00 to complete half of the street project. However, the council in its wisdom decided to utilize its own staff to accomplish the building of the entire project within the $71,000.00 budgetary constraints, in comparison $142,000.00 through a private contractor. Today being Garifuna Survivals day the Dangriga town council couldn’t have chosen a better and more appropriate day to re-open Saint Vincent Street to vehicular traffic. After all, Saint Vincent is the ancestral homeland of the Garinagu and the street was indeed dedicated to honor the homeland – Saint Vincent. For quite some time now, the street had been closed to complete the rebuilding of the major artery through the commercial center of the Culture Capital.

    Police to compensate Allyson Major for wrongful imprisonment
    Allyson Major, a Belize City resident who was aggrieved by the application of the current gun laws, has won a judgment against the Government of Belize and the Police Department. During the case management phase, it was touted as the first constitutional challenge to the Firearms Amendment Act of 2010, but the judge has not pronounced against the law, merely the application of the law in that particular instance. Major was arrested and charged in April of 2012. Officers of the Gang Suppression Unit conducted a raid of a Peter Seco street home and found a .410 gauge double barrel, and a 16-gauge shotgun, both of which were stolen from a licensed firearm holder. Arrested at the time were Errol Lynch, Kent Lynch, Leroy Gomez, Woodrow Reyes and Virginie Alvarez.

    American busted at airport with weed
    American salesman Russell Selvin Reid, 33, of Los Angeles missed his plane on Wednesday, April 13, because he was detained at the Phillip Goldson International Airport for being in possession of marijuana. According to a police report, at around 9 a.m. Reid was stopped at the scanning machine by officials of the Belize Airport Authorities because of a suspicious substance inside his bag. Officers were called to the airport and a search was executed. Inside Reid’s black travelling bag was a black plastic bag which contained a green leafy material that proved to be marijuana. The officers arrested Reid and escorted him to the Ladyville Police Station where he was formally charged with possession of a controlled drug.

    Daniel Bradley walks from charge of unlawful sexual intercourse
    Junior college student, Daniel Bradley, 19, is free from a charge of unlawful sexual intercourse with a 14-year-old minor. Allegation made against Bradley is that on Monday, June 8, 2015, he had sexual intercourse with the girl at a home in Ladyville. In court, Bradley was represented by attorney Ellis Arnold. On Wednesday, April 13, the charge was dismissed against Bradley after the child and her mother visited the police station to make a further statement saying they do not wish to proceed with the matter. Senior Magistrate Sharon Fraser informed Bradley that he was free of the charge.

    Twelve year old crushed by truck in Cayo
    A 12 year student from Sacred Heart Primary School in San Ignacio Town has succumbed to his injuries after being crushed by a large truck on Thursday of last week. Dressed in uniform, Emil August was knocked down in central San Ignacio Town by a truck belonging to Bahadur & Sons Trucking. The young boy received injuries to his head and chest area and was then taken to the San Ignacio Town Hospital. The driver of the truck has been served with a notice of intended prosecution and the file will be forwarded to the Director of Public Prosecution.

    Guatemalan Victor Sagastume busted with crack cocaine
    Guatemalan national, Victor Sagastume, is in the Belize Central Prison for several offenses after he was busted with crack cocaine on Sunday, April 10. Police were on mobile patrol in the Taylor’s Alley area on Sunday when their attention was drawn towards Sagastume. The officers approached and informed him that a search would be conducted on him. As police tried to search him, Sagastume began to act disorderly. Officers subdued him and found a green du-rag which was opened in front of him. The du-rag contained a white substance which proved to be crack cocaine. He was arrested and taken to Precinct One Police Station. Sagastume escaped shortly after arriving at the station but was captured just up the street. He bit the finger of a police officer who was trying to arrest him.

    Murder inmate busted with weed in prison
    Murder inmate, John Martinez, 27, was busted inside his prison cell with 17.6 grams of marijuana on Tuesday, April 5. According to authorities, Prison Officer Jaime Umana conducted a search on Martinez sometime around 12:20 p.m. on Tuesday, just after he returned to prison from court in Belize City. Martinez was strip search at the entrance but he seemed to be walking funny while heading to his cell. Umana decided to conduct a further searched on him. As Martinez took off his right tennis shoe a grey object fell out. Umana picked up the object and noticed it was a bundle which contained green leafy substance inside that proved to be marijuana. The find was weighed and amounted to 17.6 grams, which is not much. However, in prison the charge for possession of marijuana in the rehabilitation institution is drug trafficking. Hattieville police was called in and Martinez was arrested and charged.

    Daniel Meighan beats firearm and ammunition charges
    Daniel Meighan, 33, is a free man after he was acquitted of firearm and ammunition charges in the Belize City Magistrates’ Court on Thursday, April 7. Police caught Meighan with a 16 gauge shotgun in Rockville Village in August of last year. Meighan had no license for the weapon but explained to police that he was carrying it home for his father-in-law whom he had just left. Meighan’s father-in-law suffers from arthritis and was not feeling well so he asked Meighan to take home the shotgun for him. This explanation was not enough to prevent the officers from locking him up and filing charges against Meighan. He was booked for charges of keeping firearm without a gun license and keeping ammunition without a license.

    No compassion on Compassion lane in Ladyville Merkel Pitts dies after being shot
    After clinging to life at the Karl Heusner Memorial Hospital for several hours, 18 year-old Merkel Pitts, a ladyville resident, died after being shot by a man in the near vicinity of his house. The incident happened on Thursday, April 7, at around 7:30 p.m. in an open yard, off Compassion Lane in Ladyville. It was a favorite hang out spot for Pitts and his friends, but on that night, a lone assailant sprayed the area with gunfire. He was injured twice in the stomach, and once to the arm, and residents believe he tried to flee. Sometime during the incident, he unfortunately broke his right foot. Police found him about 8 minutes later bleeding out, and they rushed him to the KHMH. The doctors at the hospital tried to save his life, and he was placed on life support, but several hours later, he passed away from his injuries. Police are investigating the motive of his street-slaying, but residents of Ladyville strongly suspect that he was killed as an act of retaliation.

    Bus driver charged for fatal traffic accident
    Jason Robinson, 33, was riding his bicycle towards Belize City on the George Price Highway when he met his untimely death at mile 16 on Friday, March 18. According to reports, Robinson was approaching mile 16 at around 7:45 p.m. when a Shaw’s bus was heading in the same direction. The area was not well lit and the bus clipped Robinson’s bicycle and dragged him for a while. He suffered from numerous head and body injuries: head trauma, two lungs crushed, a punctured kidney and a broken shoulder. Robinson was rushed to the Karl Heusner Memorial Hospital where he succumbed to his injuries hours later. Franco Audinett, 37, the driver of the bus was served with a notice of intended prosecution.

    Clayton White remanded for machete attack
    Clayton White, 45, of #36 Quam Street City is on remand at the Belize Central Prison after he was arraigned on Monday, April 11, for three indictable offenses of attempted murder, dangerous harm and use of deadly means of harm. Allegations being made against White by Douglas Flores Jr. is that on Saturday, April 9, he tried to kill him when he was attacked with a machete. In court on Monday, White appeared before Senior Magistrate Sharon Fraser. He tried to explain what happened at the time of the incident but Fraser told him that she will only be reading the charges at this time. No plea was taken since the matters are being dealt with on indictment. Due to the nature of the offenses, bail was denied and White was remanded to the Belize Central Prison until May 27, 2016.

    Unitedville Rebels United halts Roaring Creek Grace Kennedy
    The Raymond Garbutt Cayo Senior Female Softball Competition continued on Sunday 10th April, 2016, at the Joan Garbutt Stadium in Esperanza Village with three games. In the first game played, Camalote United blasted Belmopan Capital City in three innings by the score of 16 – 1. The winning pitcher was Kenisha Sutherland and the losing pitcher was Leonelle Aldana. In game two, Untedville Rebels United blanked the defending champions the Roaring Creek Grace Kennedy by the score of 2-0. The winning pitcher Nikita Perez and the losing pitcher was Leandra Guy. And in the final game of the day, Belmopan Bandits won over the Esperanza Wolverines by the score of 11-5. The winning pitcher was Laniesha Jones and the losing pitcher was Shareenie Soberanis.

    The Belize Times

    Gapi – the reason Patrick Faber will lose
    The race for first deputy leader has deteriorated into heavy infighting inside the United Democratic Party as the two candidates rush to secure support from among the thirty one constituency representatives. Patrick Faber has employed loudmouth tactics in the race. This was predictable. Faber has become candidate and UDP spokesman, it seems, as UDP Chairman Alberto August is nowhere to present the official version of the upcoming convention. A wily Faber pointed to a “tight race” between him and Saldivar in interviews outside the UDP headquarters. He claimed that Saldivar has a narrow lead with sixteen constituencies supporting him. But the reality is that Faber is far behind than he would want to admit in the critical numbers game.

    Supreme Court says GOB’s gun law is unconstitutional
    The Government’s Firearms Amendment Act has been rebuked by Supreme Court Judge Michelle Arana in a case brought by Allyson Major and his attorney Anthony Sylvestre Jr. Justice Arana ruled that the legislation introduced by Minister of National Security John Saldivar to give Police wide powers to arrest and charge persons for illegal guns and ammunition found in premises, denies bail and imposes prison remand, is “unreasonable, arbitrary and excessive, and as a consequence, unconstitutional”. Major fell victim to the draconian legislation in April 2012 when the Police found firearms inside a house on Peter Seco Street which he would visit regularly. The Police said that they received intelligence that Major live in the house, therefore, they arrested him along with six other persons. Major did not live in the house, however.

    UDP Women Dis Faber!
    The most powerful women currently in the United Democratic Party, Belize Rural Central’s Beverly Castillo, Albert’s Tracy Taegar and Standard Bearer Carla Barnett have served woman fum fum to Patrick Faber, in announcing that they are supporting John Saldivar in the May 29th convention for Deputy Leader. Faber has little support among women in the UDP and it is not hard to figure out why. Faber’s personal life has been marred by scandals involving allegations of abuse of women. His marriage with a humble, educated woman professional fell apart and ended violently when he chose to stalk his wife after she sought refuge at her mother’s house. When Faber could not get his wife’s attention, he allegedly broke her vehicle’s windshield with a cement brick. Faber’s single lifestyle seemed to only fuel the controversies in his personal life like a raging wild fire. In September 2014, Faber made headline news when reports surfaced that a 25 year old woman, his new girlfriend and employee at the Ministry of Education, accused him of violently assaulting her during her birthday party at his house in Lord’s Bank. A report was made to the Police, but it was never investigated.

    The Fleecing of the “People’s Company”?
    BTL is not the people’s company. It became a special interest company led by the Government ever since the Barrow Administration took it over in 2009. Everything Barrow touches takes a strange turn. The BELIZE TIMES has for several years exposed how the telecoms company has been used to fatten up well-connected UDPs. We have shown the evidence of millions of dollars funnelled to special companies owned by known UDP personalities. This week we at the BELIZE TIMES expose more fishy business. We have obtained copies of BTL payment invoices which show the company buying used cars from a certain car dealership in Belize City. Used cars at almost new-car prices. One invoice, attached to this article, show that BTL purchased two used 2014 Ford F-250 for $251,100. That’s over quarter million dollars for a used car. Many questions must arise from this transaction. Was there a proper screening of the purchase? Is the used vehicle value for money? Or is it just another UDP whap on BTL?

    6 men questioned in Belmopan kidnapping/murder case
    Six men have been detained for questioning by Belmopan Police in their investigation into the weekend’s kidnapping and murder in the capital. Victims 41 year old Jose Gonzales and 39 year old Luis Ortiz were targeted by a group of four men with vicious plans. Gonzales and Ortiz were socialising at La Cabaña night club on Saturday night, April 9th. They decided to leave when they were approached by a male person considered an associate of Gonzales who asked for a lift. As Gonzales agreed, three other men jumped in the car. This is where things turned ugly for the men. Gonzales, who is the only one to survive the attack, said that as Ortiz drove into Roaring Creek near the cemetery to drop off the men, they came under attack.

    Hard Knocks
    Ain’t nobody going to accuse Old Father Christmas of being the sharpest tool in the shed. Sedi wasn’t too impressive to start with, and it’s been all downhill since. Hell, he’s got this Guatemala thing so messed up and sideways that you’ve just got to say glory hallelujah that the People’s United Party is back in the mix. If it was up to Sedi alone we’d all be drinking Gallo beer and learning the Guatemalan anthem. Every single time Sedi goes to Guatemala to hold discussions, we lose a piece of territory LOL. What a goof! Thanks to the PUP, Belizeans can now sleep easier knowing that the wannabe Guatemalan Wilfredo is under control. There is NO WAY the PUP will allow Guatemala to continue making a fool of Belize. We don’t play that. We said not one blade of grass and we mean not one blade of grass. So here’s where we are with that. Guatemala has one week to get its act together and to realize that we’re not backing down in the Sarstoon. We may be small but we are mighty and we don’t play with our territory. Don’t get me wrong – this isn’t politics because when it comes to Guatemala we push politics aside. This is about a man who hasn’t got what it takes to deal with Guatemala. Sedi really noh ready!

    Belize suspects three Zika cases
    On Friday, April 8, the Center for Disease Control (CDC) issued an advisory warning U.S. citizens that travelling to Belize could expose them to the Zika virus. The CDC reported that a U.S. national who visited Belize from the March 14th to 19th, returned to the United States and began having fever and rash on the 23rd of March. Further tests carried out showed that the virus was not contracted through sexual transmission. The travel advisory on Belize has threatened the nation’s fragile tourism industry. The CDC’s alert gets international attention and could easily turn away tourists from Belize. The Ministry of Health launched an investigation over the weekend although local officials have expressed doubt that the Zika case originated in Belize. They sought information about the U.S. national’s visit to Belize to examine if there may be other cases of the virus spreading. So far, what is known is that the location under review is in Southern Belize.

    Saldivar Squeals Foul – Says UDP special convention rules are flawed
    John Saldivar has accused his Party of not following their Constitution in the upcoming contest for first deputy leader. Saldivar had to swallow a bitter pill on Saturday when the UDP National Party Council met on Saturday April 9th to decide what rules will apply for the special convention. The NPC ruled that the same delegates who were selected to attend the “national convention” held in March in Dangriga to endorse Dean Barrow as leader will be the ones to vote in the race for deputy. Saldivar objected, saying that it was unconstitutional since the selection of delegates for the March convention did not abide by the proper rules. A statement by Saldivar’s team released today explained that the March selection of delegates was not based on the Party’s rules but allowed then because the convention was non-competitive. The upcoming convention is a different case, however, with two candidates, and possibly more by the April 29th deadline.

    Supreme Court says GOB’s gun law is unconstitutional
    The Government’s Firearms Amendment Act has been rebuked by Supreme Court Judge Michelle Arana in a case brought by Allyson Major and his attorney Anthony Sylvestre Jr. Justice Arana ruled that the legislation introduced by Minister of National Security John Saldivar to give Police wide powers to arrest and charge persons for illegal guns and ammunition found in premises, denies bail and imposes prison remand, is “unreasonable, arbitrary and excessive, and as a consequence, unconstitutional”. Major fell victim to the draconian legislation in April 2012 when the Police found firearms inside a house on Peter Seco Street which he would visit regularly. The Police said that they received intelligence that Major live in the house, therefore, they arrested him along with six other persons. Major did not live in the house, however.

    THINK ABOUT IT
    For years Belizeans have cried out against the vicious application of the firearms laws passed by the government. One of the many injustices of the UDP law is the taking away of the authority of magistrates to grant bail. This has resulted in every person charged, rightly or wrongly, with a firearm offense, having to go to jail. Such persons have to find money to get bail if they can; or stay in jail until their trial. Many innocent Belizeans have spent months in jail unable to get bail. Anthony Sylvestre, one of the few lawyers who practice at the criminal courts challenged a section of the firearms law, and won. Briefly, this is what happened. In April 2012, the worthless and notorious GSU which have no respect for the citizens of Belize, rushed into a yard in Belize City and roughed up four men. They proceeded to search two houses and claimed they found two guns. Persons who lived in one of the houses were not at home. GSU still went for them and charged them.

    It’s time to Protect Whistleblowers
    In November of last year, the government of Trinidad and Tobago tabled a bill in their Parliament designed to tackle corruption by introducing fines and jail-time for persons who seek to hinder others from coming forward to report criminal activities. This bill drew widespread approval from citizens and in support of the bill, Attorney General of the twin islands Faris Al Rawi had this to say, “Far too often this nation is riddled with very public allegation resembling certainty of crime, corruption, murder and mayhem. Everyone suspects who is guilty but no one steps forward to testify to guilt bearing evidence. The reason is clear. The fear of victimization and reprisal for honest exposure is not only perceived but real. Witness protection is a mere platitude in reality. Corruption occurs blatantly in public institutions and state enterprises and yet no trace can be testified to by a single living soul.” Al Rawi went on to state, “Madam Speaker the dominant feature of the proposed Bill is the protection and immunity from civil and criminal suit for those so termed Whistleblowers; who may want to disclose forms of “improper conduct” within their places of employment – be it in the public or private sector.” Here is a country obviously serious about tackling the scourge of corruption that has plagued the entire world, but in particular the Caribbean and Latin American countries.

    UDP Politics as Usual…
    In terms of this crime thing, can we realistically expect 2011 to be any different from 2010? Can we expect a decrease in murders, in home invasions, in assaults, in robberies and shootings and thefts? The government has offered nothing different from 2010 – no new initiatives, no new agenda, no new plans, no bold, visionary ideas. There is nothing new coming out of the Ministry of Police, nothing new coming out of the Police Department. Operating Restore Belize is still putt-putting merrily along on the wings of a song. Poverty is increasing apace, as is unemployment. Frustration and desperation are heading on up. There have been no social programs offered and no move to address the school dropout rate. There is still no state of the art forensic/DNA lab which Mr. Barrow promised something like three years ago. He continues to promise the lab periodically but still nothing. That’s all we’ve gotten from this government – NOTHING. The Minister of Police did his media thing the other day but while he may be cute (or not) we were given NOTHING concrete, nothing to base our hopes for better on. So far 2011 isn’t looking all that great…

    O.W. Juniors Football tournament kicks off
    The Orange Walk Junior football tournament organized by Deputy Mayor Ladrick “Mad Bull” Shephard and the Orange Walk Sports committee continued at the Orange Walk Technical High School field on Saturday, with Blackwater, Young School I and Young School II posting big wins in the under-13 division, while the Corozal Rising Stars U-15 and Orange Walk Central Stars B won in the under-15 division.

    Camalote United & Unitedville Rebels win in Raymond Garbutt softball
    The Camalote United, Unitedville Rebels and the Belmopan Bandits each enjoyed wins in the 2016 Raymond Garbutt Cayo senior women’ softball competition which continued at the Joan Garbutt Stadium in Esperanza Village on Sunday. Winning pitcher Keneshia Sutherland return home to lead Camalote United to a 16-1 win by mercy rule in the 3rd inning over the Belmopan Capital City Emeralds. The Camalote women scored 16 runs off Leonelle Aldana’s pitching.

    Latrell Solis, Amiri Hoare & Kevin Chen win table tennis champs
    Latrell Solis won the A Division, Amiri Hoare won the B-Division, and Kevin Chen won the C division of the annual RF&G table tennis ranking tournament organized the Belize Table Tennis Association at the Belize Elementary Auditorium on Sunday. Some 50 table tennis players ranging from ages 10 to 65 participated in this national ranking tournament. The division rating requirements had changed this year with the A Division now including players with a rating between 1000 to 1499 points, while the B Division admitted players with 700 to 999 points, and C Division included players whose rating was below 700 points. This has allowed several players to move into a higher division.

    Cane farmer’s murder remains a mystery
    The murder of 51 year old cane farmer Gregorio Abel Espinoza, a resident of Santa Rosa Village, remains a mystery to Police authorities in the Corozal District. Espinoza’s lifeless body was found floating in the Rio Hondo River bordering Mexico, some three miles from his cane field. Espinoza’s body had gunshot wounds to his shoulder and body. His family told the Police that he left home to do work on his field but his cane truck experienced mechanical problems. As a result, he chose to remain on his cane field to guard his truck, and it appears that he was attacked by armed bandits.

    THE STIRM BROUHAHA
    Pastor Scott Stirm of the National Evangelical Association of Belize (NEAB) has really stirred up a huge ants nest recently. I am still shaking my head at the arrogance, intolerance, cultural and religious imperialism, neo-colonialism, and, yes, racism in this entire sorry melee. How come in this day and age do we still have the level of ignorance and disregard for others that has been manifested by this incident? I am not at all surprised that the present controversy has grown long legs. My understanding is that Garifuna leaders met over the weekend in Dangriga and have prepared a strong statement for April 12, Garifuna Survival Day. Mr. Stirm has veritably been heedless and uncaring. As a Belizean I feel hurt and disappointed, and I can surely imagine the outrage felt by Garifuna Belizeans at such heedlessness. What do we call it? One journalist asked Mr. Stirm if this was his version of expressed religious supremacy, to which the reply uttered was an inane defense of being attacked because of his firm stance against LGBT rights and other conservative positions he has taken. I look at the press conference held by NEAB on April 1st, and this was no All Fools Day at all in their staunch support of Mr. Stirm. President of NEAB Pastor Lance Lewis, whom I have always respected, unfortunately continued to call Garifuna spiritualism and the Dugu ceremony witchcraft in quoting from the book of Deuteronomy in the Bible that no witchcraft should be practiced.

    Mr. Speaker; scandal and libel won’t answer this!
    Mr. Speaker a charge has been laid in this Honourable House today on the member from Queen Square Dean Oliver Barrow that he took 40 million of tax dollars out of the public funds to pay his brother, ex-wife and other family members. Barrow claims it’s for legal fees. My first issue with this charge Mr. Speaker is this: did the member from Queen Square guilty as accused? My second issue, Mr. Speaker is: was it lawful? And third, Mr. Speaker is: was it a break of the high moral ground and fiduciary duty we all are sworn to keep while in office. Mr. Speaker, the voters of Caribbean Shores need to have an answer. Their area representative is demanding such for them.

    Remembering Rotten Ray
    Toledo District received an unexpected visit from the United States Embassy on March 22nd. The Embassy sent Major Brett Cable to honor Punta Gorda resident Raymond S. Wood, an Oregon, US native and US Army Veteran, who died on February 14th and was being held in the morgue in Belize City with no clear plans for his internment. Wood’s wife, Janice Wood, was buried in Jacintoville in 2006 after a fall in their Jacintoville house, which Ray Wood had built himself. However, after his wife’s death, Wood could no longer bear to be in their home and he sold it to friends, Hank and Ana Baldizon. After selling his house, he moved to PG Town and rented a room on Front Street.

    GOB and Segura to PAY!
    The Supreme Court has ordered Deputy Commissioner Miguel Segura and the Government of Belize to pay $70,000 to the family of Yolanda Valencia, killed instantly in a deadly collision in August 2014. One year after the accident a claim for damages was filed by Valencia’s family brought against Segura and GOB, since the Deputy Commissioner was driving a government-issued Nissan Pathfinder when he allegedly caused the fatal crash. The images of that morning are seared into the memory of many Belizeans. Captured by amateur video, Segura was seen just after the incident apparently intoxicated, smoking a cigarette and buttoning his uniform pants while feet away Valencia lay dead in a taxi, with driver Yanie Cu screaming out in pain.

    New Sarstoon Protocols Presented
    Representatives of the Government of the Republic of Guatemala have been presented with a set of 11 proposals setting a structure in place for movement in the Sarstoon. Those protocols were handed over to Guatemala’s Foreign Minister Carlos Raul Morales and Chief of Defence Staff General Carlos Eduardo Estrada Perez at a special session last Friday at OAS headquarters at the Adjacency Zone. Chief among those protocols is an undertaking that the channels of the Sarstoon will be freely navigable by vessels of either country without interference or trailing, as well as an agreement by military of both countries to desist from threatening words or unfriendly behavior towards the other in and around the Sarstoon.

    Belize suspects three Zika cases
    On Friday, April 8, the Center for Disease Control (CDC) issued an advisory warning U.S. citizens that travelling to Belize could expose them to the Zika virus. The CDC reported that a U.S. national who visited Belize from the March 14th to 19th, returned to the United States and began having fever and rash on the 23rd of March. Further tests carried out showed that the virus was not contracted through sexual transmission. The travel advisory on Belize has threatened the nation’s fragile tourism industry. The CDC’s alert gets international attention and could easily turn away tourists from Belize. The Ministry of Health launched an investigation over the weekend although local officials have expressed doubt that the Zika case originated in Belize. They sought information about the U.S. national’s visit to Belize to examine if there may be other cases of the virus spreading. So far, what is known is that the location under review is in Southern Belize.

    6 men questioned in Belmopan kidnapping/murder case
    Six men have been detained for questioning by Belmopan Police in their investigation into the weekend’s kidnapping and murder in the capital. Victims 41 year old Jose Gonzales and 39 year old Luis Ortiz were targeted by a group of four men with vicious plans. Gonzales and Ortiz were socialising at La Cabaña night club on Saturday night, April 9th. They decided to leave when they were approached by a male person considered an associate of Gonzales who asked for a lift. As Gonzales agreed, three other men jumped in the car. This is where things turned ugly for the men.

    Breaking Belize NewsPJ

    Jewelry and gun stolen in armed burglary
    A truck driver of Camalote Village, Cayo District, reported to police on Tuesday that his home was burglarized and his maid held at gunpoint while he was away at his ranch. 33-year-old Gladwin Penner told officers that he received a call from his maid […]

    Missing boy returns home safe
    In reference to a missing person report made on Monday by Martina Cal, the 16-year-old boy has returned home safely. Martina told police that her son, Nelson Cal, left home on Sunday and had not returned up to the time of her making a […]

    Benque resident charged for drug trafficking
    Jorge Castellanos, 37, a resident of More Tomorrow Village in the Cayo District, was arrested and charged yesterday evening for the offense of ‘drug trafficking’. While conducting patrol in the Hills of Promise area in Benque Viejo at around 5:30 p.m., office on mobile […]

    CXC to introduce electronic testing
    The Caribbean Examinations Council (CXC) will soon allow students to take their examinations electronically device. This information was published on the Council’s website on March 31st. Announcing plans for a pilot during the week of April 24, CXC said the move towards electronic testing […]

    The Family of Yolanda Valencia Wins Civil Suit Against Deputy ComPol Segura
    Vendor of San Jose Succotz, Yolanda Valencia, died in August of 2014 when her taxi driven by Yanie Cu was involved in a collision with the vehicle belonging to Deputy Commissioner of Police Miguel Segura. Segura was drunk and his behavior at the scene […]

    City police find weed in two locations
    While conducting operations on Ebony and St. Jude Streets in Belize City yesterday, the Special Branch Tactical Response Squad found a total of 221 grams of cannabis. The team visited an abandoned house on Ebony Street where 163 grams of the drug was found […]

    Over $20,000 stolen from Belize Postal Service
    Belize City Police are seeking a postal service cashier for investigation in the disappearance of over $20,000 from the express mail section. The money was reported missing on February 24th, by a supervisor at the postal service who told officers that sometime between the […]

    April 13, 2016 issue of The Capital Weekly is online HERE

    This Week's Stories:

    • The Race for Deputy is On! Caretakers Support Saldivar - Faber Counting on Delegates:
      It has been one of the dominant stories for the past month and will certainly remain so for the next six weeks. It’s the contest to fill the post of Deputy Leader for the United Democratic Party. The post was left vacant by Deputy Prime Minister Hon. Gaspar Vega when he announced his decision not to seek re-endorsement as the Party’s Deputy at its National Convention in Dangriga on Sunday, March 20, 2016. The day after that national convention, Monday March 21, 2016, two aspiring candidates publicly confirmed their intentions of seeking to fill the position. Collet Area Representative Hon. Patrick Faber did so in at a press conference; Hon. John Saldivar made his via a televised announcement aired nationally. But the date was yet to be set for the special convention to decide who would become the new UDP Deputy Leader, and that would have to occur at a National Party Council meeting which the party announced would not happen until shortly after the Easter Holidays. That meeting occurred this past Saturday, April 9, 2016 at the UDP Headquarters in Belize City.
    • Deputy Prime Minister Endorses Aspiring Deputy:
      The Post of UDP Deputy Leader was made vacant by his voluntary resignation a month ago; and now he is making it known who he wants to succeed him as Deputy Leader of the Party. In a press release issued by the Saldivar campaign late Tuesday night states, “Deputy Prime Minister and Orange Walk North Area Representative Hon. Gaspar Vega is endorsing Hon. John Saldivar for First Deputy Leader of the United Democratic Party, a position which Vega recently relinquished voluntarily. In so doing, Hon. Vega joins 12 other Cabinet Colleagues and a total of approximately 20 Standard-Bearers countrywide in their support for Saldivar to become the UDP’s next Deputy Party Leader.
    • The Travails of Transition:
      In our editorial a few weeks ago, we characterized the dramatic developments surrounding the leadership of both major political parties (the PUP and UDP), though seemingly earth-shattering, as being part of the normal course of political transition in a dynamic democracy. True, change is, for the most part, a desirable and inevitable thing, but it also, much too often, a messy, divisive and tumultuous undertaking. Whatever the case, across Belize’s political landscape, change is certainly in the air. For the United Democratic Party (UDP), the first round of change features a spirited race to fill the position of Deputy Party Leader left vacant by the voluntary stepping aside of the three-time Deputy Prime Minister. But everyone knows, and the Prime Minister himself has indicated, there are deeper and wider implications for the highest position, as he prepares to retire sometime before the next General Elections which must occur by 2020.
    • Economic Development in the South, Norwegian’s Harvest Caye Cruise-Port Ready for Business:
      Belize’s Tourism Industry should receive a major boost as a massive multi-million dollar project nears completion. The project involves the construction of a new cruise tourism port at Harvest Caye in Southern Belize just off the Placencia Peninsula. The new cruise tourism port with alongside docking facility is set to go into full operation when the new cruise tourism high-season opens in November of this year. Last week, the owners of the project, Norwegian Cruise Lines, invited the Belizean media for a local launch of the facility and updated them on the status of the project. Head of Destination & Port Operations, NCL’s Senior Vice President Colin Murphy, stated, “So, this is the beach and the beach look fabulous I gotta say. More trees and more shade; but the beach came out extremely well and we are very happy with the outcome.
    • enviTransformation in the North, Corozal Rehabilitated Town Market Annex & Streets:
      The newly rehabilitated Corozal Town Market Annex and surrounding streets, built by the Government of Belize at an estimated cost of $298,757.30 and $390,543.00 respectively, through a loan from the World Bank under the Belize Municipal Development Project (BMDP) with counter-part funding of three-per cent by the Corozal Town Council, was officially inaugurated on Friday April 8, 2016. The market facility occupies over 220 square meters. This will create opportunities for vendors to foster and enhance their livelihoods, serve as a central meeting point for the people of Corozal and surrounding communities to exchange goods, produce, ideas, interact and create meaningful opportunities in the pursuit of continued socio-economic development. Vendors and shoppers will also enjoy the convenience of 15 market stalls due to the ambiance of a more spacious, pleasant and safer environment for all.
    • Transformation in the South, Fresh Images of Maura Lopez Market in Punta Gorda:
      The inauguration of the Rehabilitated Market in the northernmost Town of Corozal comes less than three months after another upgraded municipal market in the southernmost Town of Punta Gorda was officially inaugurated. Renamed the MAURA LOPEZ MARKET, tribute to one of the outstanding women of Punta Gorda, it was refurbished at a cost of almost a Million Dollars with financing from the European Union and the Government of Belize. That project included the refurbishment of the old structure to accommodate 11 new individual stalls and reconstruction of the Civic Centre with 12 new stalls and bathrooms for Fruit & Vegetable vendors. Another outstanding feature of the market project is that the design of the existing layout was improved to accommodate Arts & Craft and Food vendors.
    • Sustainable Development Goals, United Nations Development Program Holds Meeting in Belize:
      There are seventeen Sustainable Development Goals named by the United Nations Development Program, and this week, Monday April 11, 2016, the UNDP convened a meeting to discuss Belize’s drive to fulfill them. These Sustainable Development Goals (The Path to 2030) constitute the natural progression from the Millennium Development Goals (2000-2015) which were used by nations around the world to chart a path to development in areas such as Education, Health, Economic Growth and Gender Equality. Karen Barnard, Deputy Resident Representative, UNDP, explained, “Fifteen years later we are able to say what we have accomplished, or what we haven’t accomplished with those goals in each country; and Belize has successes...But now, with that whole process concluded in some way – the millennium development goals – we have a bigger project, a bigger framework called sustainable development goals...It gives us something to work towards. Belize has to decide which of these
    • Transformation in the West, Led by Minister of Works & Cayo Central Representative:
      The physical transformation of the nation’s infrastructure network has been evident under the Dean Barrow administration, particularly during its last term (2012-2015). It is on the strength of this physical transformation and the promise that “The Best is yet to Come” that the Administration secured a historic third term in the November 2015 General Elections. Putting this into perspective, Prime Minister Rt. Hon. Dean Barrow proclaimed in his recent budget presentation on March 8, 2016, “It is because of all this that we premised last year’s election drive on the theme “The Best is yet to Come”. So it was not just a campaign slogan, but a call to arms based on past performance and future promise. It was a declaration of confidence. It was an expression of resolve.
    • Peace Process Progresses, Belize Guatemala Discussions Filicitated by OAS:
      In the face of increasing tensions near the western and southern borders, Belize and Guatemalan diplomats at the highest levels continue to push forward with their efforts towards peaceful co-existence and a lasting solution to the age-old territorial dispute. On the diplomatic front, despite the challenging border incidents, such as the recent shooting of a Belize soldier, presumably by Guatemalan civilians, much progress appears to have been made in the peace process this past week as very cordial bilateral meetings took place between high-level teams from both countries under the auspices of the Organization of American States (OAS). The teams were led by foreign Ministers of both countries; for Belize, Hon. Wilfred ‘Sedi’ Elrington; for Guatemala, Carlos Raul Morales.
    • Fighting Crime & Narco-Trafficking:
      United States Ambassador to Belize H.E. Carlos Moreno and the Right Honourable Prime Minister of Belize Dean Barrow signed the 16th Amendment to the Letter of Agreement (LOA) implementing the International Narcotics and Law Enforcement Affairs (INL) program through the Central America Regional Security Initiative (CARSI) on Thursday, April 7, 2016. The U.S. Government has provided over $35 million in programs and grants to Belize through the Central America Regional Security Initiative (CARSI) since 2008. The current agreement provides USD $6,450,000 in funding to be used for the following projects: Improved Border Inspection, Vetted Units, Capacity Enhancement, Justice Sector Reform, and Community Policing.
    • FOUR NEW AMBASSADORS TO BELIZE:
      Four ambassadors presented their credentials to the Governor General of Belize H.E. Sir Colville Young on Monday, April 11, 2016 at Belize House in the City of Belmopan. H.E. Aitzaz Ahmed, Ambassador of the Islamic Republic of Pakistan, H.E. Yusra Khan, Ambassador of the Republic of Indonesia, H.E. Ibrahim Obeidat, Ambassador of the Hashemite Kingdom of Jordan, and H.E. Mohamed Saadat, Ambassador of Palestine, all expressed their pleasure in being a representative of their countries in Belize and extended warm greetings to Belize from their respective governments. Each ambassador conveyed his country’s intention to continue to develop and maintain strong associations with Belize.
    • CODICADER comes to BELIZE:
      It’s a big deal, indeed, that Belize is this year hosting the CODICADER (Central American Council of Sports & Recreation) Games. The games themselves will be held from July 6 to 11, 2016, but the official launch took place this past Friday, April 8 at the Marion Jones Sports Complex in Belize City. CODICADER is an organ of the Central American Integration System (SICA) whose goal is to contribute to the strengthening of integration, solidarity and peace between our peoples of member countries which include Guatemala, Honduras, El Salvador, Nicaragua, Costa Rica, Panama and Belize. The Games will host student athletes between the ages of 6 to 12 years, and the sporting disciplines will be table tennis, football, basketball and volleyball. The competitions will be held across the country simultaneously in Orange Walk, San Ignacio, Belmopan and Belize City.
    • Youth and Community Transformation Project:
      The Ministry of Human Development, Social Transformation and Poverty Alleviation, the executing agency for the Youth and Community Transformation (YCT) Project, hosted a ground-breaking ceremony on Monday, April 4, 2016 at the site on Chetumal Street Extension in Belize City for the much anticipated Lake Independence Resource Center (LIRC). Speaking with Channel Five News, Minister of Human Development, Social Transformation and Poverty Alleviation, Hon. Anthony ‘Boots’ Martinez stated, “It is a welcomed initiative, in my view. I think that I support it wholly because, by extension, this project is not only for Lake Independence, you know; it is for the south-side. Fortunately enough, Lake Independence had the land space and the infrastructural project running through it, and so it is very welcomed.” In her address at the ground-breaking ceremony, Melissa Miralda, Human Development Coordinator at the Community Rehabilitation Department, remarked, “This is an occasion whose time has come after years of planning and aspirations towards the commencement of this essential facility. I can attest that this dream has been shared by our director, Miss Bradley, for some time now. We dreamt of a space that is protected and safe, that is owned by the community, and where the germination of programs such as sports, arts and culture, literacy and life skills can be honed and shared.”
    • Belize Joins ‘Mesoamerica Without Hunger’:
      In order to strengthen national and local institutional frameworks for food security and family farming, Belize officially joined the ‘Mesoamerica without Hunger’ program. Mesoamerica without Hunger is a South-South cooperation agreement that runs on the Central American countries, the Dominican Republic and Colombia, with the support of FAO and the Government of Mexico, through the Mexican Agency for International Development Cooperation (AMEXCID). In Belize, Mesoamerica without Hunger is oriented in a first phase for the design and development of a pilot experience of sustainable schools in the Toledo district, whose young population is mostly indigenous. coordinates efforts with several Belizean institutions, such as the Ministry of Agriculture and Natural Resources, the Ministry of Health and the Ministry of Education. The participation of local farmers as a key role in providing safe and quality food has special emphasis in this process.
    • Major International Recognition for Career Belizean Woman Immigration Officer:
      Belizean Debra Baptist-Estrada was named one of 14 Women of Courage award winners for 2016, the US Department of State reports. Baptist-Estrada was commended by the State Department for her refusal of bribery. In a summary of her biography, the State Department stated, “In an institution largely dominated by men, 20-year Belize Department of Immigration veteran Debra Baptist-Estrada has consistently refused bribes and other incentives to look the other way.” As Port Commander of Belize’s only international airport, Ms. Estrada worked with US officials last spring to crack open a drug and human smuggling operation to the US and Europe.
    • Police Minister Tours Out-District Formations:
      As Minister of National Security, Hon. John Saldivar is currently on a nationwide tour of Police Formations to re-assess and re-evaluate the effectiveness of the Police and explore ways of improving the work of the Department in its fight against crime and its function of increasing safety and security throughout our communities. On Wednesday, March 30, 2016, Hon. Saldivar visited the Toledo Formation headquartered in Punta Gorda. He was accompanied by Commissioner of Police Allen Whylie and Southern Region Commander Senior Superintendent Ralph Moody. He inspected a guard of honour and held indoor discussions with local commanders and members of that formation.
    • BELTRAIDE SHOWCASES ITS WORK At Corozal Community College Expo:
      Over 1,000 visitors to the Annual Corozal Junior College (CJC) Business Expo held on Friday 8, 2016 on the school campus in Corozal Town had lots of fun, but they also learnt how BELTRAIDE works in attracting trade investment, as well as trade promotion and facilitation in Belize. Some 31 companies from the Corozal and Orange Walk Districts displayed their wares and information on their products which ranged from candles, food and drinks, arts and crafts, financial, agricultural services and motorcycles among many others. BELTRAIDE was among those exhibiting companies and its booth showcased numerous brochures on the work of its various units.

    Blogs

    San Pedro, Belize’s LobsterFest 2016 Is Stacking UP to be HUGE!
    On Ambergris Caye, Belize, this is going to be the biggest Lobster Festival on record! In more ways than one… 11 days of events. For the 10th Annual San Pedro LobsterFest. The calendar is already full…as in previous years, a passport will be issued and the more events that you attend? The better chance that you have to win THE GRAND PRIZE. “One lucky participant will win a vacation package for 2 to attend the San Pedro Lobster Festival 2017!!” Not only will it be the longest event of all…but there are some very cool features The Block Party is on the Saturday the 25th and is the biggest event BY FAR. This year there will be VIP seating, so that you can reserve a table for an hour or more. The festival is making all attempts to GO GREEN! Biodegradeable bags and plates are requested from all booths. The clean-up crew is recruiting (as always) – and special LobsterFest T-shirts will be made for the crew. Who wouldn’t want a t-shirt that says San Pedro Lobstah Clean-Up on the back? Or maybe Lobster Clean-Up and Security. I might have to sign up! As always, it will be a full week of fun, music, sun and lots and lots of lobster. The season officially opens June 15th. Here are some pictures from previous years…just to give you a taste.

    Gourmet Huevos Rancheros
    Heat the tortillas by toasting them one at a time in a dry cast-iron skillet or directly over a gas flame until lightly toasted; Place on a baking sheet, spread each tortilla with ¼ cup of refried beans, and cover to keep warm. Working in batches as needed, heat the butter in a large skillet over medium-high heat until it is very hot but not smoking and the foaming has subsided; Crack the eggs directly into the hot butter and reduce the heat to medium-low or low; Fry the eggs, shaking the pan occasionally to keep the eggs from sticking; Season the eggs with salt and pepper; Fry to the desired doneness, about 2 minutes for "sunny-side up," 3 minutes for medium yolks, and 4 minutes for hard yolks; Or, once the whites are just opaque, turn the eggs and cook for 30 seconds more for "over easy," 1 minute more for "over medium," or 2 minutes more for "over hard.".

    8 All Inclusive Belize Resorts to Stay in This Summer
    Located on the Central American Isthmus between Mexico and Guatemala, Belize has a long coastline along the Caribbean Sea. This tropical nation is a popular visitor destination thanks to its exotic Mayan ruins, vibrant jungles, excellent snorkeling and many other reasons. Read on for information about eight all inclusive resorts to stay at during your summer vacation in Belize!

    “Criminal Minds” episode in Belize? It was just criminal
    My first inkling that the CBS series “Criminal Minds: Beyond Borders” dabbles in geographic bullshit was the network press release last week that touted Wednesday’s episode “Love Interrupted” taking place on the island of Belize. It seems an American couple honeymooning on this mythical island is abducted and the FBI’s highly specialized foreign troubleshooting and extraction team drives to Ambergris Caye from the International Airport to rescue them. Yeah, you read that right. Drives to Ambergris Caye. They also rent full-size vehicles here and drive past the rolling hills of AC — on superbly paved roads. One agonized viewer mentioned cannibalism. Anyone know anything about that? Here’s an unintentionally hilarious recap of the episode. Spoiler alert: Includes Aztec warrior methodologies. I’ve got to be honest here. I didn’t watch the episode. We opted to watch the reality-based superhero movie “Deadpool” (with Korean subtitles!) under the stars at The Truck Stop. I’m sure I learned more about super heroes watching “Dead Pool” than anyone learned about Belize while watching that “Criminal Minds” thing. That name, by the way, I’m pretty sure it is has a lot to do with how the show’ perceives its audience’s intelligence.

    Simple. Beautiful. Wonderful. Wedding at Grand Caribe and Rain Restaurant, Belize
    Last year I photographed one of the most beautiful proposals ever… and I was eagerly waiting for their beautiful wedding… and this past weekend, I captured beautiful moments, full of love and laughter! Surrounded by an intimate group of family and friends, Margo and Larry said “I do” with their feet in sand, and had a day they’ll never forget. Enjoy!

    5 Things You Should Know About Foreign Ownership of Property in Belize
    Does the idea of buying and owning property in Belize excite you, but moving abroad feels overwhelming? Relax. By the time you finish this article, you’ll realize that the process of buying a home in Belize is no harder than moving across North America. Ex-pats tell us that it’s often easier thanks to Belize’s open-arms policies that are so inclusive, you may wonder what took you so long to make your move. Choose an established, safe, gated community like Orchid Bay for your new home and whether you buy a villa, a condo or build on a lot, find the good life without spending a fortune in this welcoming land. Here are 5 Things You Should Know About Foreign Ownership of Property in Belize: 1. It’s easier than you imagine to acquire residential property in Belize if you’re a citizen of another nation. There are no purchase restrictions, real estate transactions are conducted in English and even the paperwork is no big deal since Belize’s government is modeled after the British legal system, so you’ll understand every word of the contracts you sign. Ownership rights are exactly the same as they are for Belizean homeowners. 2. It’s more practical than you imagine to buy Belize residential property because new homeowners are entitled to multiple tax breaks when they buy. You’ll have no problem mastering the currency exchange rate ($1 USD to $2 BZD), down payments and deposits are affordable, miscellaneous transfer taxes and fees associated with your purchase are minimal and financing isn’t hard to obtain. Turn to a bank for a loan. If you prefer not to deal with banks, ask about multiple financing options available to you.

    Dangerous storms of ignorance
    In 2005 and 2006, when we were both Academic Directors at the Vermont-based School for International Training, Dr. Imani Tafari-Ama, a leading Jamaican social scientist, and I co- organized and co-directed a six-week international summer program entitled, “African Spirituality in the Caribbean”. The aim of the program was to engage U. S. university students in rigorous set of academic and experiential learning activities that would enable them to examine the roots, current practices, challenges, and impact of African-based religions in the context of Caribbean culture. A broader goal was to bridge cultural gaps, increase cross-cultural understanding through positive human interactions and diminish the dangerous storms of ignorance that have historically divided, controlled, oppressed and destroyed people of color. The course was born from our academic backgrounds and interests in sociology of religion, psychology of religion, U.S. and Caribbean history, culture and development. During the first three weeks of the course, students were based first at UWI campus in Kingston, Jamaica and then in different rural communities to observe, participate, reflect and analyze their experiences with Rastafarianism, Kumina and other African based spirituality there. In the final three weeks of their course, the student groups (of no more than fifteen each) were based in Dangriga.

    Trying to decide between Belize and Panama? Read this to help you decide!
    Belize and Panama are both top-rated places where North Americans tend to relocate. Although many places in the Caribbean (islands) are really popular for vacations, there are certain aspects of both Belize and Panama that make them attractive for actual long term living. I wanted to write a post about one person's (opinion) perspective about the pros and cons. **Note, this is not meant to be an extensive review and I did not see the whole country of Panama. This is just meant to be a brief summary of conclusions that one traveler had, after experiencing both places, just meant to give you enough info to see if it might be right for you! Visiting somewhere, you learn more than any history lecture ever could teach!

    International Sourcesizz

    Martinez Wins LSC Weekly Honors
    Belizean athlete, Kaina Martinez, continues to star on the track while studying in the United States. Kaina Martinez receives the honor of Lone Star Conference athlete of the week for the second time this season. Martinez could not be beaten this weekend as she gathered three first place finishes in the 100-meter dash, 200-meter dash, and the women's 4x400 meter relay. Martinez ran top times of 11.63 seconds in the 100-meter dash and 24.13 seconds in the 200-meter dash. The senior served as the last leg of the 4x400 relay team and took first place with a time of 3:46.78. LaGae Brigance, Adriana Bonin, and Teandria Taylor were the other members of the relay team. The men are now ranked No. 2 and Texas A&M-Kingsville women are ranked No. 5 after the latest rankings by the U.S. Track & Field and Cross Country Association. Both teams will head to Houston, Texas to compete in Rice Twilight Meet hosted by Rice University on April 13.

    CSU Projects a Near-Average Atlantic Hurricane Season in 2016
    The 2016 Atlantic hurricane season started off with a surprising bang in early January, when Hurricane Alex formed in the far Eastern Atlantic. However, a near-average Atlantic hurricane season is likely in 2016, said the hurricane forecasting team from Colorado State University (CSU) in their latest seasonal forecast issued April 14. Led by Dr. Phil Klotzbach, with special contributions from Dr. Bill Gray, the CSU team is calling for an Atlantic hurricane season with 13 named storms, 6 hurricanes, 2 intense hurricanes, and an Accumulated Cyclone Energy (ACE) of 93 (these numbers all take Alex into account.) The long-term averages for the period 1971 - 2010 were 12 named storms, 6.5 hurricanes, 2 intense hurricanes, and an ACE of 92. The CSU outlook also calls for a 50% chance of a major hurricane hitting the U.S. in 2016, with a 30% chance for the East Coast and Florida Peninsula and a 29% chance for the Gulf Coast. The Caribbean is forecast to have a 40% chance of seeing at least one major hurricane. All of these probabilities are very close to the long-term numbers from the last century.

    Armed Forces of Belize observe LANG's Vigilant Guard training at Camp Beauregard
    Louisiana and the Caribbean country of Belize have worked together for years to trainand better each other. This week, as the Louisiana National Guard hosted the annual Vigilant Guard training, preparing itself for any natural disasters that may appear, Belize did the same in Pineville. Several days of the training went underway at Camp Beauregard's Joint Operations Command, or "JOC." "Scenario right now is Hurricane Zack,” said Willard Conley, Chief of Operations at the Joint Forces Headquarters. National guardsmen from all over Louisiana and the southeast acted out the exact plan of action for if a hurricane were to strike our state. "It's the optimum opportunity for us to be able to perfect what we need to do to be able to respond to the needs of the people of the state of Louisiana,” said Conley.

    Shark Ray Alley
    There is a lovely little spot in the Hol Chan Marine Reserve where the weather is warm, the waters are crystal clear, and the diving and snorkeling is unparalleled. That is, if you don't mind getting in the water with a hoard of sharks and rays, which you should. Known fittingly as Shark Ray Alley, this popular dive spot is a hotspot for largely harmless nurse sharks and smaller rays. The spot came to be not because of any feature of the environment, but because local fishermen used to come to the spot to clean their catches, filling the waters with morsels that were perfect for the bottom feeding nurse sharks and rays. Soon the animals recognized that they could come to the spot for a reliable meal and returned in droves. Then, in the perfect circle of life, the fishermen got the local dive masters to start coming to site, letting divers get up close and personal with the animals, and actively feeding them to keep them coming back. Nowadays the sharks and rays can actually hear the boats coming and swarm the area when their gravy trains approach. Divers and snorkelers get to jump into the teeming waters to swim alongside the animals, while dive-masters keep them in the area by feeding them. The four-five foot sharks are not really interested in making a meal out of any tourists, but they are sharks nonetheless, so a diving in the area is probably best reserved for those who are not afraid of the animals.

    Last Best Place on Earth: Who Will Save the Caribbean’s Great Coral Reef?
    Les Kaufman set me straight on the paradox that is Lighthouse Reef Atoll, a cluster of five islands some 50 miles off the coast of Belize in the emerald blue waters of the Caribbean. “Lighthouse Reef is the greatest missed opportunity in the tropical Atlantic for meaningful conservation of a marine site,” Kaufman told me. The Boston University marine biologist has been studying the remote Belizean coral reef since 1996. “It’s a place of drug runners, desperate fishermen and shark finners. It’s like the Wild West out there.” It’s also a wonder. For the second consecutive year, I was spending time at the atoll, snorkeling in deep and shallow waters. Its islands—a part of the Mesoamerican reef system, the world’s second largest — span 26 miles north to south. And at the atoll’s heart is the Blue Hole, a spectacular deep-blue, coral-ringed cavern and shark tank made famous by the French oceanographer Jacques Cousteau. “Lighthouse Reef is a global asset for understanding the interplay between climate action and local human impacts,” Kaufman explained. “It’s a sort of regional climate observatory. You are far enough offshore where human impacts are sufficiently reduced, and you have a good chance of the coral community recovering [from periodic climate change-caused bleaching episodes] and becoming quite lush.”

    Search for missing Isla Mujeres fishermen suspended
    An extensive two-week search for five missing fishermen from Isla Mujeres continues to turn up empty-handed. As of Wednesday April 13, the search for the missing boat and its crew has been suspended, two weeks after they went missing. However, the Quintana Roo state congress has passed a resolution asking the Mexican Navy to restart and intensify the search efforts. The congressional effort, which also asks for help from Mexico’s Secretaría de Gobernación (Interior Secretary) and Secretaría de Relaciones Exteriores (Foreign Relations Secretary), is being led by Edgar Gasca Arceo, the delegate from Isla Mujeres. On March 30, a local fishing boat, Anastacia, left its dock at Isla Mujeres with five fishermen who set out shark fishing along the Yucatan Channel. The men, who were due to return that afternoon, have not been seen or heard from since. An extensive search has been underway since the morning of March 31 and has included planes, small private boats, large local passenger ferries as well as the US Coast Guard and Fifth Naval Region of the Mexican Navy.

    US releases 2015 human rights report
    On Wednesday, the US State Department released its 2015 Country Reports on Human Rights Practices, which include a number of countries in the Caribbean region. Speaking to reporters Secretary of State John Kerry emphasised that the human rights standards referred to the reports are universal standards. “They are not something that we make up. They’re not some arbitrary standard of the United States, which we seek to impose on people. These are universal standards of human rights that have been adopted and accepted and are agreed to by most nations in the world, and even some nations that have agreed to them but violate them. These are the international standards,” he said. He pointed out that respecting human rights is not just a moral obligation; it’s an opportunity to harness the full energy of a country’s population in building a cohesive and prosperous society. Countries that suppress freedom of expression, for example, are less likely to have economies that innovate, diversify, and grow. Unsurprisingly, two regional countries – Cuba and Venezuela – were specifically highlighted in the report’s introduction.

    Land tenure still a challenge for women in Latin America
    Rural women in Latin America continue to face serious obstacles to land tenure, which leave them vulnerable, despite their growing importance in food production and food security. “Women are the most vulnerable group of people with respect to the question of land tenure,” Soledad Parada, a gender adviser in the regional office of the United Nations Food and Agriculture Organisation (FAO), in the Chilean capital, told IPS. She added that “in general, the activities carried out to improve the land tenure situation have failed to take women into account.” As a result, “women have access to land through inheritance or because they were granted it by an agrarian reform programme, but they are always at a disadvantage,” she said.

    How Ginger Destroys Colon, Prostate and Ovarian Cancer Better Than Chemotherapy
    Ginger has been part of natural medicine for centuries. In fact, this powerful root has been used for treatment of many diseases owing to its numerous medicinal properties. Even modern science has recognized the health benefits ginger provides. Ginger contains gingerols, paradols, and shagaols, all of which are anticancer compounds, as found in a study published in the Journal of Food and Chemical Toxicology. A number of other studies have also confirmed that ginger is extremely efficient in destroying cancer cells in prostate, ovarian, and colorectal cancer. Moreover, some believe that the anticancer properties of ginger may be even stronger than chemotherapy. An American study, published in the British Journal of Nutrition, found that ginger extract (zingiber officinale Roscoe) can stop the development of prostate cancer cells in humans when ingested at a daily dose of 100mg per kg of body weight. The results showed that ginger extract reduced prostate cancer growth in about 56% of subjects. The researchers estimated that eating 100g fresh ginger a day will give the same results in an adult weighing 70kg.

    Videos

  • Belizean partners discuss the UCF REU, 3min. Our Belizean partners, the University of Belize and the Pan American Development Foundation, discuss the power and potential for international collaboration in community GIS and citizen science!

  • DHOP Belize 2016, 3min. Dental Humanitarian Outreach Program DHOP Belize 2016 Music: A Beautiful Life by Tim McMorris.

  • Belize Trip 2016- Ready, Set, Rum!, 4min. UWRF Study Abroad Belize Trip March 8, 2016-March 20, 2016

  • 2th April, 2016 LIfe Uncommon, 68min.

  • 20,000 STRONG 2016, 6.5min. Wow! Great footage, some done with a drone, great music, and the best audio bites too. This is a must see video. Thank you, Special Envoy for Women and Children! "The second national 20,000 Women's Empowerment Rally held in Belize City on March 11th, 2016."

  • Belize May 2015, 3.5min. Mom and Jamie's trip to Belize

  • Belize Highlights, 3min.

  • NEF, 1.5min. Nelson Fuller Tribute song and slide--Internation Caribbean Style Red Carpet event April 2016

  • Shark Ray Alley - Hol Chan Marine Reserve - Ambergris Caye, Belize, 3min. Close up with the nurse sharks in Belize.

  • Crikozeen Belize 3 22 2016, 8min. Crikozeen on the Turneffe Atoll, with Belize Dive Connection.

  • Belize 2015, 3min. A collection of videos from my 5th year in Seine Bight

  • La Ruta Maya. Guatemala, Mexico & Belize - Travel Snapshots HD., 15min. Travel Snapshots of La Ruta Maya visiting Guatemala, Mexico & Belize.

    April 14, 2016


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    Click for our Daily Tropical Weather Report.

    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

    The neighbourhood friendly marine mammal: Dolphins
    They are agile! They are quirky! They are adorable! And they are found in Belize! Yup I’m talking about dolphins: the graceful and beautiful mammals of the sea. The most common species found within the Caribbean waters of Belize are the Atlantic Bottlenose Dolphins (Tursiops truncatus), but, for those lucky enough, migratory species can be seen too. Dolphins are such lovable creatures, that on April 14th of each year, people across the world participate in National Dolphin Day. Dolphins are known to have acute eyesight both in and out of the water along with having a well-developed sense of touch, with free nerve endings densely packed in the skin. They can hear frequencies ten times or more above the upper limit of what adult humans can and are capable of making a broad range of sounds using nasal air sacs located just below the blowhole. Here in Belize, dolphins are most commonly seen in are Blackbird Caye and the three main atolls: Glover’s Reef, Lighthouse Reef and Turneffe. But they can also be found in the waters that surround Ambergris Caye riding the bow wave of boats.

    Belize Mayor’s Association Meets in San Pedro
    The monthly meeting for the Belize Mayor’s Association (BMA) was held on La Isla Bonita on Thursday, April 7th. Mayors from the eight other municipalities in Belize were hosted by Mayor Daniel Guerrero at the San Pedro Town Hall Conference Room. On the agenda were collaborative efforts to develop municipalities, and discussions of upcoming initiatives. During the meeting, Mayor of Belize City and President of the Belize Mayor’s Association, Darrell Bradley, identified 20 topical areas the municipalities will be focusing on. Some of those included: revenue generation, municipal courts, human resource management, public finance management, court of conduct for counselors, procurement, information technology (IT), and public relations. In an effort to upgrade the technical capacity of all municipalities; Bradley said, “We are adapting a software for all municipalities which will integrate all of the municipal systems like traffic, property taxes, human resources, and trade licenses.” The plan will be enacted in a matter of weeks in all nine municipalities.

    San Pedro Tiger Sharks make it to the Playoffs
    After two back-to-back wins in the most recent round of games, the San Pedro Tiger Sharks have secured a position in the 2016 National Elite Basketball League (NEBL) Playoffs. With only one week remaining in the regular season, the four playoff teams have already been decided, with the other four teams having been eliminated from playoff contention. But, while the teams have been selected for the playoffs, there is still no decision as to who will face off in the championship match, and who have to settle third and fourth palace. The only team assured for the championship match is the Smart Belize Hurricanes, who captured the #1 seed in a spectacular season. The San Pedro Tiger Sharks must also win their last two games versus Belmopan Bandits and Orange Walk Running Rebels to clinch the #2 seed, otherwise, the Belmopan Bandits will take the #2 seed if they defeat the Tiger Sharks and Independence Thunderbolts. Dangriga Warriors will be the #4 seed if Belmopan beats San Pedro, but if San Pedro beats Belmopan they will be the #3 seed.

    Fire Department quickly douses small fire at Ramon’s Village
    On Sunday, April 10th, the San Pedro Fire Department (SPFD) responded to a minor fire incident that took place at Ramon’s Village Resort on Coconut Drive. According to the SPFD, the fire occurred around 7:10PM and was immediately dealt with. The culprit appears to be an unattended lit cigar left on a wooden porch. Officer in Charge of the SPFD, Newton Lennan, credits Ramon’s Village’s active fire brigade, which is prepared, alert and aware when a fire breaks out. Lennan acknowledges that the brigade is beneficial for the tenants of Ramon’s Village. “This group is really effective, especially in terms of them recognizing the situation and responding to the situation on time,” said Lennan. Readers will recall that on August 27, 2013 Ramon’s Village Resort suffered a devastating fire that destroyed nearly two-thirds of the resort. Having the brigade in place is an excellent method to derail another catastrophe. The SPFD shared some basic fire tips. Smokers are cautioned to be extra careful in disposing their cigarettes. In fact, do not carelessly discard cigarettes—make sure that it has been completely put out.

    Comedy Nights for a Cause raises much needed charity funds
    Laughter resonated across the grounds of Sandbar Beachfront Hostel and restaurant, as for two nights, “Comedy Nights for a Cause” brought the jokes. Held on Friday, April 8th and Saturday, April 9th, the event offered amusing entertainment to the island. With world-renowned comedic storyteller, Australian Jon Bennett headlining the show, the event was huge success, raising close to $5,000 for charity. Friday’s show was titled “Pretending Things are a Cock”, which received a nomination for the Best Comedy by Just For Laughs (Montreal Fringe) and multiple awards by Uptown Magazine, Edmonton Journal, Hairline (in the United Kingdom), and Vue Weekly (in Canada). The title for Saturday’s show was “Fire in the Meth Lab”, which has received a rating of 5-stars by Sunday Mail (in Australia), Broadway Baby (in the United Kingdom), and Fringe Guru (in the United Kingdom). Bennett brought the house down with all those in attendance laughing the night away.

    Ambergris Today

    Twin Ceiba Trees
    Tound at Caracol Archaeological Site stand tall and impotent next to the other, dwarfing all the trees that surround them. Magnificence!

    Misc Belizean Sourcesmzz

    Belize Fishing Report, Weeks of April 3rd – April 9th, 2016
    3 yes, Three Grand Slams this week plus a soft slam! Joe, was able to land all three species during his stay so he gets credit for a soft slam. Normally that would be big news. but 3 separate grand slams overshadowed the feat. Louis neatly wrapped up his grand slam while his lovely partner Johanne was a tarpon short on the same day. Jesse got his slam early in the week and is floating on cloud nine! David rounded out the week with his slam to punctuate the great fishing week we had.

    World ranked Laser Sailors Visit Belize Sailing School
    On Sunday, April 10, 2016, two vivacious and highly decorated Laser Sailors, Hanne Weaver, 20, and her brother Ted, 23, visited the Belize Sailing Center and provided inspirational training and racing for the school's aspiring young Laser sailors. Among Hanne Weaver's many accomplishments is winning the 2012 USA Junior Female Single-person-Dingy Championship at age 16. She currently ranks 3rd among US senior women Laser Radial sailors and is in a very strong position to make the 2020 Women's US Olympic Laser sailing team. Hanne is putting off full-time college to pursue her Olympic goal; she is an assistant manager at a Seattle WA branch of West Marine, the large and prestigious US water sports outfitter and retailer. West Marine fully supports Hanne's sailing ambitions and allows her time off to pursue them. The Belize Sailing Center was fortunate that Hanne and her family took the time for their visit. By the end of February, Hanne had already competed in 2 international regattas - the Miami Olympic Class Regatta followed by the European Laser Senior Championships in the Canary Islands.

    Caye Caulker Lobsterfest DJ
    Its just right that our next DJ is another Caye Caulker Star... No other than Belize's #1 female DJ.. the international Miss Linda Blease

    Belize outlines proposal to end border dispute
    Belize has outlined 11 new proposals that it hopes will end the latest border dispute with Guatemala, Foreign Minister Wilfred Elrington has said. Elrington, who met with his Guatemalan counterpart, Carlos Raul Morales, last Friday to discuss the incident in the Sarstoon area, said that Belize is hoping the new proposals will form part of a new agreement between the two countries. Elrington said that Belize is hoping that the “channels of the Sarstoon River shall continue to be freely navigable by vessels and boats of each of the two countries without any interference or trailing by the other”. Last month, the Belize government called on the Organisation of American States (OAS) to conduct an investigation following a shooting incident in which a senior Belize Defence Force (BDF) member was shot at least four times while in the Sarstoon area.

    2nd Annual Autism Awareness 5k April 17th
    Here is a great cause to join. Autism Awareness 5K Run/Walk this Sunday!!! See you there.

    Poets Corner: Consent
    By Abdulmajeed K Nunez. Thirteen-year-old giving consent to four men is absurd The mere title gets on my last nerve Police charge two that’s the word Looking for the next two speaks wonders Belize does not have sufficient child protection laws for teenagers Our children are not protected from predators Human trafficker, pornographers, There are no social media laws Which almost makes child pornography a lost cause Then we glorify the shit by printing it in our newspapers They ought to be publicly flogged or dismembered Our law is apparent No child under age 14 can give consent Where the hell were her parents? They too need to be charged for being negligent Taking her to the station is not sufficient Newspapers are more concerned with sales than content This seems to be the grim reality That the men in our society Have no policy Fi di have sex with pickney

    CNWA Self Defense Class
    The Cayo Neighborhood Watch Association held a Self Defense class, and Renee Wentz, whose given many self defense classes in Cayo, and all around Belize, was there to teach it. Thanks, Renee! More pictures here. "The Cayo Neighborhood Watch Association held a Self Defense class yesterday, and it was awesome! We found it very informative and helpful, and the afternoon session for women was also very practical and empowering! Thanks to The Aguada for being such awesome supporters of our Community and safety and letting us use your beautiful Conference "

    Channel 7

    Valencia Family Settled With Segura
    3 months ago, we told you about the lawsuit that the Valencia Family was bringing against Deputy Police Commissioner Miguel Segura. It's because of that now infamous accident which happened back in August 2014. You'll remember it being the incident where he was caught on camera drunkenly buttoning his trousers, with a cigarette dangling from his mouth. He was criminally charged with manslaughter for the death of 54 year-old Yolanda Valencia, who was in the other car that his police issued vehicle slammed into head-on. The driver, Yanie Cu, suffered severe head and body injuries and it took him months to recover. Even now, he's reportedly not regained 100% of his mobility and is deeply indebted. Segura walked away unharmed from that accident, and he now stands charged additionally with drunk driving and other offenses. Right now, he's on interdiction, but the family of the victims say that because of that accident, they've been struggling financially.

    PUP Myrtle Vs. UDP "Fonso: "Obeah" On Trial?
    Today in the Supreme Court, former PUP Secretary General Myrtle Palacio was duking it out with Alfonso Noble, the Editor of the UDP's Guardian Newspaper. She is suing both Noble and the Guardian for libel for an article headlined, "PUP Secretary General Endorses the Use of Witchcraft in Politics", which was printed in the Guardian Newspaper back in December 2014. The libel suit got its day in court today before the chief Justice where Former PUP Prime Minister Said Musa represented Palacio. The UDP's Legal Advisor, Michael Young, defended Noble and the Guardian Newspaper. Now, this fight dates back to December 2014, when Myrtle Palacio appeared as a guest on the Positive Vibes Morning Show. That was shortly after nomination day for the By-Election in Cayo North where the PUP's Richard Harrison was defending the PUP's seat against the UDP's Omar Figueroa after representative Joseph Mahmud resigned. On that talk show Myrtle Palacio complained bitterly about returning officer Marcelo Windsor, and suggested that his credibility as a fair election officer had been compromised. In defence of the Guardian, Michael Young played a recording of that portion of the broadcast for Chief Justice Kenneth Benjamin.

    Sara's Sibling Says She Was On Sidewalk when SUV Hit
    The family of Dangriga accident victim Sara Suchite says it didn't happen the way police reported it. As we told you, Suchite was knocked down and killed yesterday morning at mile one and a half on the Stann Creek Valley road. She had just gotten out of a taxi and was crossing the road when Elroy Coleman's SUV slammed into her. When we spoke to Suchite's brother this evening after the post mortem, he told us that his family and the taxi driver saw everything. They say that she had already crossed the road and was going to buy fry chicken when the driver ran her over. She was launched into the air, landed a distance away and died immediately. Her brother Samuel Suchite gave us his family's version of the accident. Samuel Suchite - Brother: "I went to run an errand at the hospital – just to fill out a form for a license but when I was coming back, I saw that police were out on the street and a lot to people were there too, so I went closer to see and I was there like for about 30 minutes trying to find out what was happening. So when I left, I went to the market where my family was and that's when they told me it was my sister who was dead."

    They "Huff" Hofius?
    Two former employees of Hofius, Koshia Gentle, who was employed as a Supervisor, and Lydia Selina Bennett, who was employed as a clerk, face 49 counts of theft tonight. They're jointly charged of embezzling over quarter million dollars from the long established hardware store. After an intensive 3-month investigation, both Gentle and Bennett were arraigned on Monday on a long list of charges. They are accused of stealing varying amounts of money between November 2, 2015, and December 31, 2015. No plea was taken from them at their arraignment, and Magistrate Carlon Mendoza has adjourned the case untilApril 25. At that date, it is expected that the prosecutor will inform the court if the DPP's Office intends to proceed with the charges summarily, or on indictment. If it is on indictment, they will have to face Supreme Court trial.

    The Mysterious Death Of Anwar Vernon
    Last week 31 one year old Anwar Vernon was pulled out of a drain on Raccoon Street Extension. He was found battered, bleeding and unconscious. Because of that investigators were having trouble developing leads because he was unresponsive and no witnesses came forward. Well the news tonight is that Vernon never woke up. Police report that he passed away yesterday as a result of his injuries. Now while the post mortem examination is yet to be concluded ACP Chester Williams told us today that they are investigating it as murder. ACP Chester Williams - OC, Eastern Division South" "Mr. Anwar Vernon succumbed yesterday to his injuries he had received and at this time we ourselves are still trying to find out what actually happened and we awaiting the post mortem examination so that the doctor can tell us basically what type of injuries he sustained and based on that we will be able to determine whether or not it's a murder or if he just fell in the drain which is an accident"

    One Of Robinson's Alleged Killers Is Free
    55 year Edward Albert Robinson was killed on Saturday, October 17, 2015, collateral damage in an internal gang beef, which targeted 31 year old Jermaine Betancourt. Betancourt survived, but the older man who was in the wrong place, wrong time died from the gunshot to his back. Police arrested two men from Betancourt's own Supal Street crew and charged them for murder. They have been remanded for the last five months, plus. The newstonight is that one of them, 22 year old Devon Sankey has been cleared of charges and freed from remand, while the other, Ryan "Lippo" Alvarez is still facing that murder charge. Today, after getting the news, Sankey sprinted out of courtroom and, across Battle Field Park and jumped into a taxi on Albert street.

    Russell Reed With Weed
    36 year-old old American national Russel Reid, a salesman of Los Angeles was busted with 1.4 grams of cannabis at the Phillip Goldson International Airport. He was trying to board a plane home when he was caught with the drugs. The incident occurred around 9:16 a.m. today. Reid was about to board an American Airlines flight to Los Angeles when his luggage was scanned and it revealed that he had cannabis inside. He was charged with possession of a controlled drug, and when he appeared before Chief Magistrate Ann Marie Smith, he pleaded guilty. The Chief Magistrate pointed out that he should also have been charged with attempting to export cannabis. Nevertheless, and she fined him $500, to be paid forthwith. Reid paid the fine and he was allowed to go free.

    ... As Through A Glass Darkly
    Two weeks ago we told you about what was supposed to be a new wave of cracking down on tint that's too dark. Indeed, enforcement since the law was put on the books in 2012, has been at best, sporadic. And, with that, dark tint – darker than the law allows – has become the norm again. And, we've seen it being sported on quite a few official rides like nobody's business. Today we asked the mayor about his official ride, a sporty, low profile Ford SUV. Hot ride, but is the tint too dark?: Jules Vasquez: "I saw recently I was at Eastern Division Police Southside and I saw them checking your traffic officers working with the police with the tintometers to check the tint 1% on Mr. Williams, ACP Williams' vehicle. Your vehicle I would say has about 5% which well below the legal limit. What is the situation with the enforcement of tinting laws and the traffic department and your own city issued vehicle."

    Cops And Social Workers Find Common Ground On Curfew
    South Side Commander Williams has also had a lot to say about his 9 pm Kids Curfew. The debate has played out in the media and all sides have made strong arguments. Now it seems that at long last the stakeholders have found some common ground. That's because the department of Human development has jumped on-board in making the program more child-sensitive. This resolution was made at a meeting in Belmopan earlier this week. ACP Chester Williams told us about the little tweaks that have been made: ACP Chester Williams - OC, Eastern Division South: "Instead of keeping the children at the police station overnight, there will not be a social worker on call. So once we pick up the child we will then call the social worker who will come into the police station immediately, will also bring in the parent of the child and they will meet with the social worker for the social worker to do the necessary inquiry which will then determine whether or not they will allow the child to go home with the parent for the night or if they will find alternative accommodations..."

    Cleyon Clings To Life In Merida: He Needs Your Help To Survive
    Cleyon Marage urgently needs a bone marrow transplant to survive. The surgery costs over $100,000 and his parents are pleading for financial assistance. 12 year old Cleyon has been on the news before. He was diagnosed with acute myeloid leukemia in 2014. This type of leukemia attacks the bone marrow and produces cancerous cells. He has been in and out of the hospitals in Belize and in Merida, but with all that treatment, Cleyon relapsed in March this year. He is at a very critical stage and if he doesn't get that bone marrow transplant as soon as possible – little Cleyon more than likely will not make it through. Today his stepfather came to our studio and first explained that things took a turn for the worse after Cleyon's February Chemotherapy session. Karick Garnett - Stepfather: "The last time he went February, he was good for approximately a month and right then and there after his health started to deteriorate. He started to get sick, he got weak and was vomiting for about 3 days and his mother got curious and she went to the clinic. They took a blood test and came back that his blood was low and she sent the information to the doctor in Merida..."

    Emily's Exasperation
    You may remember Emily Gabourel from an interview she did last week. She is the mother of the Chavarria brothers: Jamie who was gunned down in March 2015 and Rene who was killed one year later. In an interview with us last week she called out the Ladyville police formation for allegedly dragging their feet in her son's murder investigation. The matter would have ended there but now Gabourel is claiming that police are harassing her. According to her, she was alone at her Ladyville home with her 3 year old grandson sometime after 6:00 this morning. She was getting ready for work, when police officers from the strike team barged into her house and allegedly began acting disrespectfully. What happened next was the greatest disgrace a woman could ever face. Here is her story. Emily Gabourel - Claims Police Harassment: "I was at home giving my grandson tea and I gave him his breakfast, he ate breakfast and I hear wrapping at the door. Police, police, open the door or else we will broke it down! Open the door! And I said excuse me I just going to go bathe just wait I'm the come because I push the chair against the door to make my grandson no go out the door while I the bathe..."

    Persecuted Vendors Get Validation From All Sides
    On Monday we told you about a young couple whose daily business of selling food and snacks at the corner near Queen’s Square Primary was disrupted. 22 year old Darrel Grant and his wife 21 year old Ishtar Williams, were putting up their shed before their midday break, when police from the Tourism Unit ordered them to tear it down. The story has caught the attention of the Public Relations officer for the Youth Department who came out today to express his solidarity with the young couple and to demand some action from the authorities. Now although Saldano stood this afternoon as an independent youth advocate without the authority of the Youth Department, there have been other offices that have rallied behind Grant and his wife, though not publicly. And with all that support they’ve come upon a newfound energy to continue their venture against the odds.

    Ministry Of Health Braces For CARPHA Results
    The ZIKA samples from Stann Creek and Toledo have been sent to CARPHA for testing. They were sent yesterday and now the Ministry of Health is patiently waiting for the results. These samples were collected after the Centre for Disease Control and Prevention in the US reported that a woman started showing signs of Zika after visiting Belize. Now apart from sending samples, the ministry is also enhancing its clean up campaigns and education outreach programs especially for pregnant women. Workshops and exercises are also being held with health professionals in the Maternal and Child Health Departments so they can be vigilant and know how to detect the symptoms. Again the ministry maintains that Belize is Zika free until there is laboratory confirmation. We will inform you when the results are in. Now, the real risk with Zika are to pregnant women and the possibility of birth defects, specifically microcephaly where babies are born with abnormally small heads, and underdeveloped brains.

    When a Sign Is More Than A Sign
    The bright, bold and life size Belize sign in Buttonwood bay has become the subject for thousands of social media postings – in short, it's became kind of a Belize City landmark since it was installed in September of 2014. It's also become a tourist attraction, and that's why another identical sign has been built and installed right in the middle of the Fort George Tourism Zone. It's a stone's throw from the iconic Baron Bliss Grave and Lighthouse. It was declared open today, and Mayor Darrell Bradley said, it's an effort to create more municipal pride:.. Darrell Bradley - Mayor of Belize City: "And the idea of a sign that's very simple that says Belize is that we should celebrate we are as a city. You would have seen now that we are continuing with the efforts of making Belizeans proud of Belize City by unveiling this second of 3 Belize signs in Belize City and the third we hope to put along the Yabra area."

    Has Hans Had His Way With City Hall?
    But since there's a new sign on the Baron Bliss green, what about those others around the corner, down the Marine Parade promenade. Yeah, you know the ones we're talking about…the ones that say "Bhojwani Promenade." The mayor says he agreed to them so that the city could settle a lawsuit. That lawsuit was based on the fact that the council demolished tow bandstands that Hans Bhojwani had donated. And even though it was donated, both sides agreed that the council was obligated to do something – thus the promenade signs. Well, it seems that Bhojwani also had an obligation. We have seen city council minutes form 2011 and 2012 where it says that Bhojawani had undertaken to install park benches and lights. We asked the mayor about that today:.. Darrell Bradley - Mayor of Belize City: "We did look at those agreements, we did look at those minutes and he has made representations that they are going to honour those obligations. I haven't spoken to him directly, my conversation was always through his attorney and when they wrote to us there was no reneging on any pledge or contribution in relation to what he said he would do and there is no indication that he would abscond from those responsibilities."

    Harbour Mouth Siltation: Who's Gonna Fix It?
    And one other municipal matter that we asked the mayor about was the buildup of silt in the Belize Harbour. We've been following the story for months – and it's only getting worse. In fact, it threatens to close in on the channel used by the cruise ship tenders and the water taxi's. Now, the mayor has said that it's government's job to dredge it, which will cost 2 million dollars. But, nothing is happening, so we pressed him on the point today:.. Darrell Bradley - Mayor of Belize City: "If that's not addressed at a very early date, we would likely lose the Haulouver Creek and that's a major historic water way. That was the reason why people settled Belize City in the first place and it would be a monumental shame if we would lose that creek. We are a water city and we have to ensure that something is done with that at an earliest possible date." Jules Vasquez: "But are you willing to put your government on the spot and say this is an urgent matter, its worsening in front what would be the Brodies warehouse and that the government has to act urgently? Because there doesn't seem to be any urgency."

    Murderer For Weed
    Forty year old Glenford Baptist, who is serving a sentence of 25 years for a conviction of murder, was taken to court today on a charge of drug trafficking. On April 8th when Baptist's cell was searched by a prison officer, police found 63 grams of cannabis. He pled not guilty to the charge, and his case was adjourned until June 15.

    Eric Got Off Easy For A Pound Of Weed
    Another inmate, 26 year old Eric Castillo, is lucky to not have his stay in prison extended by an additional 3 years. That's because the Chief Magistrate decided to give him a non-custodial sentence for drug trafficking after he begged the court for leniency. On April 26, 2015, Prison officer Walter Gabb saw Castillo picking up garbage in an area that was restricted to inmates. It turns out that Castillo tried to smuggle weed into the prison in garbage bags. When the officer searched the garbage bag, he found two parcels of cannabis – containing 13 ounces, almost a pound of weed. In his defence, Castillo testified that he was told by another prison officer to take out the garbage and did not know that it contained cannabis. He also testified that he was beaten by the police who broke his jaw, and added that he was forced to escape from the station because the police refused to take him to the hospital.

    Meet & Greet, How The Media Eat
    By now you have probably lost count of the number of “Meet and Greet” sessions that have taken place on the streets of South Side Belize City. Well, so have we. That’s because there is one being held almost every week. The initiative was recently launched last year July since ACP Chester Williams was appointed as the South Side Commander. Today they were at it again. This time meeting and greeting residents in Jasmine Street and the PIV area. But there is a little difference in this week’s session because they added one extra question to their questionnaire, and that is: Do you support the Child Curfew? Williams told us what the feedback has been so far. Police also visited residents in the area of Tibruce Street.

    Channel 5

    The Family of Yolanda Valencia Wins Civil Suit Against Deputy ComPol Segura
    Yolanda Valencia was killed in August 2014 when an intoxicated deputy Commissioner of Police Miguel Segura, in a government vehicle, collided into a taxi just outside San Jose Succotz, Cayo. [...]

    Myrtle Palacio Versus Guardian Newspaper
    Former People’s United Party Secretary General Myrtle Palacio appeared before Chief Justice Kenneth Benjamin today, after filing a civil suit against the Guardian Newspaper.  The case originates from an article [...]

    A Case of Witchcraft and Defamation
    In court this morning, Palacio gave a sworn statement. The article and the accompanying cartoon were also tendered as evidence.  The argument, however, brings to the fore the issue of [...]

    Is it Fair Comment or was Former P.U.P. SecGen Slandered?
    Newspaper editor Alfonso Noble, who is named in the suit, is being represented by Senior Counsel Michael Young.  Both Young and his client reiterated that what was published in that [...]

    Citywide Curfew Officially Green-lighted
    Since Assistant Commissioner of Police Chester Williams effected a citywide curfew roughly one month ago, various sectors, including parents, government departments and non-government organizations have raised concerns about the housing [...]

    More on the Guatemala Proposals
    On Tuesday night, we brought you extensive coverage of a Ministry of Foreign Affairs press conference in Belmopan. The issue on the table, of course, was the recent meeting with [...]

    Belize’s Proposals Kept Low Key by Guatemalan Congress
    As we showed you in Tuesday night’s newscast, both Minister Elrington and Opposition representative Ambassador Assad Shoman believe that the protocols were well received. They are also hopeful that a [...]

    Was Belize City Resident Anwar Vernon Murdered?
    Was thirty-one-year-old Anwar Vernon murdered?  It’s a baffling case that has Belize City police stumped.  Vernon had been admitted to the Karl Heusner Memorial Hospital a week ago, after being [...]

    FCD Says Poisoning of Only Water Source in Chiquibul Highly Unlikely
    On Holy Saturday, B.D.F. Staff Sergeant Richard Lambey was shot near Valentin Camp in the Chiquibul. Days after, a report into the incident commissioned by the Ministry of National Security [...]

    Murder Charges Against Alleged Supal Street Associates are Withdrawn
    In October of 2015, a well-known notorious street figure, Edward Albert Robinson was targeted by gunmen but he escaped the shooting and instead a bystander, Jamil Betancourt, was fatally shot [...]

    Former Death Row Inmate Pleads Not Guilty to Drug Trafficking
    Glenford Baptist, who is serving a twenty-five-year sentence for his part in a murder, has picked up another charge that could lead to further time behind bars. Baptist, who is [...]

    Progress in Slain Journalist’s Murder Case
    A preliminary inquiry in the case of slain newspaper journalist Kareem Clarke was held in the magistrate’s court on Monday.  Clarke was allegedly shot and killed by a minor on [...]

    Allison Major is Victorious in Challenging Draconian Gun Laws
    A constitutional challenge filed by Belize City resident Allison Major in which he disputed the amended firearm act, concluded in the Supreme Court earlier this week.  The suit came on [...]

    Mayor Bradley Weighs in on U.D.P. Deputy Leadership
    Turning to politics…the U.D.P. Deputy Leadership convention has been set for May twenty-ninth. In the ongoing campaign, on Tuesday, Minister John Saldivar, who is running for first deputy party leader, [...]

    What’s Sedi’s Explanation for SATIIM/GAF Encounter?
    There’s more tonight on the eleven protocols that were presented to Guatemalan officials. On Tuesday, Foreign Minister Wilfred Elrington asserted that there is an unofficial understanding at the Sarstoon, a [...]

    Funding O.A.S. Adjacency Office is Expensive but Necessary
    While the discussion on the new Sarstoon protocols was no doubt the primary item on the agenda of last Friday’s meeting at the O.A.S., it wasn’t the only one. Both [...]

    Bienvenido! A New Belize Sign is Inaugurated Near Animal Park
    A second Belize Sign was installed today in the area of the Baron Bliss Lighthouse in the City. The first, which is erected at Buttonwood Bay, has been evoking nationalism [...]

    Mayor Bradley on Municipal Projects
    The Council has been working closely with the Belize Tourism Board and the National Institute of Culture and History on a series of programs to enhance the character of Belize [...]

    B.N.T.U. to Hold Forum on Belize/Guatemala Issue
    Classes on Friday for primary schools across the country have been cancelled as all teachers are expected to head west to Benque Viejo to attend a forum on the Belize/Guatemala [...]

    …A Goal to Subsequently Revise Academic Curriculum
    According to Palacio, it is now necessary to revise the existing curriculum to reflect a broader knowledge of the civics and history of Belize.   Luke Palacio, National President, B.N.T.U. [...]

    Meet & Greet Backa Martins
    The weekly meet and greet exercise conducted by Belize City police was concentrated in the Saint Martin’s area this afternoon where officers of varying ranks descended on the streets of [...]

    CTV3

    CJC Seeks First Place In Social Security Debate Competition
    The beginning of this year saw Social Security Board kicking off their second annual debate among junior colleges, an idea that was born in celebration of Social Security Board’s 34th Anniversary. This year’s first debate took place here in the north between Corozal Junior College and Belize Adventist Junior College, under the topic “Media Sensationalism is distorting our Reality”. CJC won that round and then they went up against the Galen University Debate team. This time the topic was “Technology is destroying our Social Skills”. Once again CJC came out victorious automatically earning them a position to compete in the finals against Ecumenical Junior College.

    Results for Sample Sent For Testing For Zika Still Pending
    Over this past weekend the Ministry of Health along with a team from the vector control unit, Public Health Department and the Epidemiology Department conducted field investigations to determine the possibility of local transmission of the Zika Virus in Belize. This came after information was received from the Center for Disease Control and Prevention that an American couple may have contracted the virus in our country. After the field investigations were conducted the Ministry revealed two potential cases of the virus, one in Stann Creek and one in Toledo. A third person of interest was also located in the Cayo District. Samples were taken from the persons in the southern districts and were sent to the Caribbean Public Health Agency (CARPHA) for testing.

    No Arrest Made For Espinoza's Murder
    Five days have passed since the brutal slaying of 51 year old cane farmer Gregorio Abel Espinoza and Corozal Police is nowhere close to solving the murder. If viewers can recall Espinoza’s body was discovered on Friday April 8th at around 10:00 in the morning in the area of Santa Rosa located behind the Village of Chan Chen in the Corozal District. According to authorities, upon arrival at the scene they saw the lifeless body of Espinosa lying face down near the banks of the New River. A post mortem conducted on the body concluded that Espinoza died as a result of multiple gunshot wounds to the thoracic region. The body had a total of 2 gunshots, 1 to the right side around the shoulder area and the other on the lower left rib cage.

    Human Rights Report Highlights Police Brutality In Belize
    Secretary of State John F. Kerry today issued the 2015 Country Reports on Human Rights Practices (commonly known as the Human Rights Reports) to the U.S. Congress. The report includes the status of human rights conditions in 199 countries and territories around the world including Belize and highlights the intensified global crackdown by the U.S. on societies that restricts the operating space for human rights. The executive summary for Belize's most recent Human Rights Report states that Belize's most important human rights abuses include the use of excessive force by security forces (particularly the police), lengthy pre-trial detention, and harassment and threats based on sexual orientation and gender identity. Among the countries listed in the report as worst countries on human rights were Syria and Afghanistan and in the secretary’s preface, he highlights grim examples of violation of human rights in those countries such as denial of free speech and expression by jailing reporters for writing critical stories, or sharply restricting or closing non-governmental organizations for promoting supposedly foreign ideologies such as universal human rights.

    BTV To Conmemorate 157th Anniversary Of The Signing Of The 1859 Treaty
    The long standing territorial dispute between Belize and Guatemala has recently seen increased aggressions from Guatemalans in from of military hostility, breach of our territorial waters and lands and most recently high Guatemalan officials openly claiming not only Sarstoon Island, but also the entire Sarstoon River. Today the Belize Territorial Volunteers issued a release condemning the most recent hostility by Guatemalans and also pointing out GOB’s continued, deliberate negligence concerning all matters involving Guatemala’s aggressions. As a result of this BTV believes that the awareness campaign being carried by the group, on this issue must be maintained, in an effort to sensitize Belizeans as to the reality of the situation that is impacting our borders. And as a commemoration of the 157th anniversary of the signing of the 1859 Treaty between the governments of the UK and recognized the border between Belize and Guatemala, the BTV is organizing a trek to the border at the mouth of the Sarstoon River, on Saturday, 30th April 2016 and the Northern Territorial Volunteers will be organizing a similar trek to Garbutt Falls monument on the same day.

    LOVE FM

    Belize – Still ‘Officially’ ZIKA-FREE
    Belize officially remains the only country in Central America where a case of the ZIKA virus has not been confirmed. Despite recent reports of an American woman contracting it following a trip to the southern and western parts of Belize, health officials are yet to find any alarming results thus far. Director of Health Services, […]

    Former PUP Sec Gen Takes to Court After Being Accused of Dabbling in Witchcraft
    The lawsuit filed by former Secretary General of the People’s United Party, Myrtle Palacio, against the “Guardian Newspaper and Editor, Alfonso Noble was heard today in the courtroom Kenneth Benjamin. Palacio alleged that an article published in the newspaper was demeaning and disrespectful and that it defamed her character. Palacio’s argument is that the published […]

    Union of Teachers Determine to Learn More on Belize/Guatemala Issue
    The Belize National Teachers’ Union is taking on a campaign that is scheduled to be launched in Benque Viejo del Carmen in the Cayo District with its main focus being the Belize/Guatemala issue. The President of the Belize Teachers’ Union, Luke Palacio entertained the media this afternoon where he explained that this undertaking is a […]

    BNTU Speaks on Reinsertion of Civics, Social Studies and Geography in the Classroom
    In today’s press conference with the head of the Belize National Teachers Union, Luke Palacio, he spoke of the schools’ curriculum and the importance that the union will be placing in having other subjects incorporated. The Belize/Guatemala issue is one of those subjects among others. LUKE PALACIO “We will be trying to get all sides […]

    BNTU on Mission to Have Teachers Know the Southern Border
    Last week we reported on the national convention held by the Belize National Teachers Union in the Toledo District. As part of that annual session, the teachers were taken to Belize’s border with Guatemala at Jalacte. President Luke Palacio spoke on why that trip was taken and why Jalacte and not the Sarstoon where the […]

    Territorial Volunteers Plan Trek to Sarstoon and Garbutt’s Falls
    While the Belize National Teachers Union are making plans to have the teachers visit the border areas in southern Belize for educational purposes, Wil Maheia of the Belize Territorial Volunteers has announced the organization of a trek to the border at the mouth of the Sarstoon River. This trek will take place on April 30 […]

    Chester Goes From Curfew to Mentorship
    A number of stakeholders involved with child safety in Belize have rejected the idea of the curfew brought by Assistant Commissioner of Police Chester Williams. One of those stakeholders is UNICEF. UNICEF representatives have criticized the action including the methodology being used. Love News spoke to Assistant Commissioner of Police Chester Williams who shared his […]

    Who Gave the Order to Shut Down the Collet Vendors?
    On Monday, a couple who are young entrepreneurs in the Collet division were forced to shut down their business. A police officer was allegedly called by a neighbor to demand that the couple close down their business. Darrel Grant and Ishtar Williams hold a business peddler’s license and a food handler’s certificate. According to Grant […]

    A War Over Women in the UDP
    The issue of the support by the women in the United Democratic Party seems to have taken the spotlight for a bit in the ongoing campaign for the First Deputy Leader. On Saturday, April 9, Collet Representative, Patrick Faber was asked about the support that his opponent John Saldivar is getting from what he has […]

    Briceno Meets with Executive Members in OW North
    Last week we told you of the National Executive meeting held by the People’s United Party where the decision to remove Ramon Cervantes Jr was delivered. At the conclusion of the meeting, the Chairman, Henry Usher confirmed that that was the decision taken and that Cervantes would be replaced by Christopher Coye. Earlier this week, […]

    Belize and El Salvador Strengthen Ties
    Celi Paz has been the Ambassador for Belize to El Salvador since 2010. While she currently resides in that Central American country, Ambassador Paz is in Belize and was at the Foreign Affairs Ministry yesterday where Love News spoke to her on her role and duties as the Ambassador to El Salvador. CELI PAZ “Charges […]

    PlusTV

    Belize and Guatemala trying to work out modus for Sarstoon
    The Ministry of Foreign Affairs called a press briefing late Tuesday evening in the Capital City to update on recent developments in the strained relations with Guatemala and Belize as it relates to the Sarstoon. According to the Minister of Foreign Affairs, Hon. Wilfred Elrington, a meeting was agr...

    4 home invasions in 6 months in Camalote Area
    Four home invasions in the past 6 months have occurred on this stretch of road in Camalote Village. In Belize, home invasions are referred to as “Aggravated Burglary” as it involves not only the breaking into homes, but the breaking into homes when the residents are there. Since October of last yea...

    Daughter attacks her father with an axe
    A Sandhill woman pleaded guilty to wounding her own father with an axe. Lily Ozaeta admitted to chopping her 84 year old father, Nicholas Ozaeta, in the head, making him unconscious and landing him in hospital. According to the police report, on Sunday, April 11, 2016, Nicholas Ozaeta reported to th...

    Allyson Major wins constitutional case over firearms
    Allyson Major, Sr., on Monday won an important case in the Supreme Court, challenging the constitutionality of the Firearms (Amendment) Act, 2010. Major sued two officers of the Gang Suppression Unit (GSU) and the Attorney General for unlawful detention and violation of his Constitutional rights. In...

    Bus driver charged in accident
    Franco Audinett, a 37 year old bus driver from Hattieville, Belize District, has been arraigned for manslaughter by negligence, causing death by careless conduct, and driving a motor vehicle without due care and attention. On March 18, Audinett is accused of negligently driving a Blue Bird passenger...

    Garifuna Arrival Day marked in Belize
    Garifuna Settlement Day on November 19th is the celebration of the ethnic group’s arrival to Belize, memorializing the larger of two migrations from Honduras that took place in 1823. But it was borne out of a bitter day in March, 1797, when more than 2 thousand of the original Black Caribs, defeated...

    The Reporter

    BTIA launches ‘Capture the Cover’ competition
    The Belize Tourism Industry Association (BTIA) is calling photographers to submit photo entries for the upcoming Belize Destination Magazine 2016/2017 competition. The magazine, which highlights Belize as a tourist destination, wants to publish photos from ordinary Belizeans in its latest edition. The photos can depict an array of subjects from culture to landscapes and heritage sites. “We are seeking your inspiring images depicting Belize,” the BTIA said. To enter the competition, participants must follow the Destination Belize page on Facebook under the name @Destination Belize and on Instagram under @destination.belize and get three friends to do the same. Participants must also post an original photo on Facebook or Intstagram and tag Destination Belize along with the three friends and include the hashtag #destinationbelize. Photos must include a brief description and location.

    Breaking Belize NewsPJ

    Second “BELIZE” sign up near Baron Bliss Lighthouse
    A second “BELIZE” sign was unveiled this afternoon along the seashore in the vicinity of the Baron Bliss Lighthouse on Marine Parade by the Belize City Council. Built with funds from an anonymous donor, City Councilor responsible for Parks and Beautification, Kevin Singh, said that […]

    Kareem Clarke killer to be tried for murder
    KREMANDALA journalist Kareem Clarke was murdered on July 6th, 2015. A minor was charged for his murder and the preliminary inquiry was held at the Family Court in Belize City yesterday. The big news today is that the accused has been committed to stand trial at […]

    Ex-PUP Secretary General sues Guardian editor for libel
    Myrtle Palacio, the former Secretary General of the People’s United Party (PUP), is suing editor of the UDP’s Guardian newspaper, Alfonso Noble, for libel. The trial was heard today by Chief Justice Kenneth Benjamin. When she appeared as a guest on party radio station Vibes […]

    Murder charge withdrawn, another co-accused to face inquiry
    Devon Sankey and Ryan Alvarez were charged with the October 2015 murder of Edward Robinson, shot dead while the two were allegedly targeting 33 year old Jamil Betancourt on North Creek. However, after five months on remand, Sankey’s charges are withdrawn by order of […]

    Glenford Baptist in marijuana trouble
    40 year old Glenford Baptist, who is serving a sentence of 25 years for a conviction of murder, was charged with drug trafficking when he appeared today before Senior Magistrate Sharon Fraser. Baptist pleaded not guilty to the charge, telling the Senior Magistrate, “I […]

    American charged for cannabis at airport
    36 year old American national Russel Reid, a salesman of Los Angeles who was busted with 1.4 grams of cannabis at Phillip Goldson International Airport, pleaded guilty to a charge of possession of a controlled drug when he appeared today before the Chief Magistrate, […]

    Garifuna leader dies in Honduras
    The National Garifuna Council (NGC) issued a press release announcing that a delegation will be leaving the country today to participate in burial activities for one of the ethnic group’s great leaders, Sasamu Celeo Alvarez Casildo. Casildo will be buried in Honduras where he […]

    Man dead after accidentally shooting himself
    A Georgeville resident yesterday died from a gunshot wound which he accidentally inflicted to himself while working at his farm. 53-year-old Earl Tillette reportedly tripped and shot himself in the jaw at around 9:45 a.m., later succumbing to his injury at the Karl Heusner […]

    Teenager killed in traffic accident
    A traffic accident on the Southern Highway yesterday morning took the life of a 19-year-old Guatemalan national as she exited a taxi around the mile 1 ½ area. Initial investigations revealed that Sara Suchite had exited a taxi and was running across the highway […]

    Police investigates death of Belize City man
    Yesterday afternoon at around 2:30, Belize City Police were dispatched to the Karl Heusner Memorial Hospital (KHMH) where upon arrival, officers saw the lifeless body of 31-year-old Anwar Vernon. Vernon had been found in a drain by police officers on Wednesday of last week […]

    Vega backs Saldivar
    Deputy Prime Minister and Orange Walk North area representative Gaspar Vega has offered his public endorsement for John Saldivar’s candidacy to replace him as the UDP’s First Deputy. According to Saldivar’s committee, Vega joins 12 other Cabinet colleagues and a total of approximately 20 […]

    PLB playoff action heats up
    The action is starting to heat up as only four teams stand ready to face off in the Premiere League of Belize (PLB) playoffs round: the BDF FC, Police united, Placencia Assassins and Belmopan Bandits. The first round was played on Saturday night. Police […]

    The April 10, 2016 issue of The STAR (Cayo) is online HERE

    This Week's Stories:

    • POLICE ON THE LOOKOUT FOR TWO SUSPECTS IN THE SELENA MURDER:
      residents of Selena Village, Cayo for their role in the murder of 63- year-old Guatemalan laborer, Edgar Alfonso Perdomo Aldana, of Selena Village. The persons of interest are Guillermo Duarte, 27, and Marlon Padilla, 22. Sometime around 3:00 a.m. on Saturday, April 2, Aldana was drinking in the Iguana Creek Government School compound, about 50 feet from his residence, with his friend Ruben Manzon. According to reports, this was when Duarte and Padilla approached them. Words were exchanged between the men and a fight started. During the fight, either Duarte or Padilla pulled out a machete and began to chop his rivals. Manzon received multiple chop wounds to the upper part of his body but was able to escape and ran for help. Unfortunately, Aldana was not as lucky. He could not escape the fury of his attackers. He was chopped multiple times to the head and body and bled out at the scene of the fight.
    • Sacred Heart Primary School Student Hit By Truck - In Critical Condition:
      Reports reaching us indicate that during the school lunch break, a Sacred Heart Primary student was hit by a truck owned by Bahadur & Sons Trucking. The incident occured in front of the popular Trin’s Deli located on Eve Street in San Ignacio. Eye witnesses report that everything transpired so quickly, resulting in the little boy being hit and laying on the street with blood coming from his mouth and behind his head. The little boy was subsequently rushed to the San Ignacio polyclinic where he is listed in a critical condition. (Subsequent unconfirmed reports suggest the little boy succumed to his injuries)
    • New Cayo Top Cop - Happy With Community Involvement:
      Superintendent Richard Rosado, Officer Commanding San Ignacio Formation, has been the top cop in Cayo for two months now and he is settling in well. Rosado emphasizes the importance of community policing and sees the department as simply an extension of the community it serves. In order to keep crime under control in the area, it will take the residents of San Ignacio, Santa Elena, and the 20 surrounding villages to effectively police their space. Offciers of the formation are enforcement agents that act on behalf of the people they serve. “It has been a wonderful experience so far because we have received the full support of the community,” Rosado told the STAR. He is in the process of setting up a “Cayo Formation Advisory Board” to better police the jurisdiction.
    • Drugs Found In Red Creek And Santa Elena Town:
      Cayo Police conducted a series of searches over the last week. At 2:39 p.m. on Monday, April 4, police conducted a search in an empty lot on the George Price Highway in the Red Creek area. This led to the discovery of a plastic bag which contained 198 grams of Cannabis. Noone was in the immediate area; theerfore it was labeled and deposited as “Found Property”. Later that day, conducted a search in an empty lot on Carmen Street, Santa Elena Town which led to the discovery of a black plastic bag containing 710 grams of Cannabis. This bag was labeled and deposited as “Found Property”.
    • Belize Produces $27 Million More In Goods And Services In 2015:
      The fourth quarter preliminary estimates by the Statistical Institute of Belize show that the level of economic activity during the months of October to December 2015 increased by 0.6 percent when compared to the same quarter in 2014. The total value of goods and services produced in Belize was $661.1 million, up $3.7 million from $657.4 million in 2014. For the first nine months of the year, the level of production in the country was 1.2 percent higher than it was in 2014, as the relatively strong growth experienced during the first quarter largely offset declines in the subsequent two quarters. Therefore, the economy grew by 1.0 percent in the year 2015, just over $27 million in goods and services.
    • Cost Of Living Increases But Falls Slightly In Cayo:
      April 7, 2016: Cost of living has increased slightly in Belize, according to the Statistical Institute of Belize, but San Ignacio/ Santa Elena saw price fell by a fraction of a percentage point. SIB released its latest statistics on the Consumer Price Index on Wednesday, March 30, and it reveals that cost of living increased by 0.3 percent in February of 2016. According to S.I.B., the All-Items Consumer Price Index stood at 102.7 in February of 2016, up from 102.5 in the same month last year. The price of beef, pigtail, eggs, cabbage and premium gasoline increased by 20.1 percent, 8 percent, 17.2 percent, 37.6 percent and 27.1 percent; respectively, in the month of February 2016 as compared to 2015.
    • Why Mexicans Are Troubled By Donald Trump:
      that drives Donald Trump crazy apart from yellow number 5 hair colour," jokes Chumel Torres, a Mexican comedian that has taken the internet by storm. His show, El Pulso de la Republica (The Pulse of the Republic), is Mexico's answer to the US late-night talk show The Daily Show. While there are few Mexicans who find US Republican candidate Donald Trump funny, laughing in the face of adversity is the strategy Torres has decided to adopt and he seems to be doing something right. The comedian, who originally trained as an engineer, has 1.5 million subscribers to his Spanish-language YouTube channel and a growing number of fans for his newer English-language version too. The appetite for Trump gags is high but it is starting to wear thin, Torres says.
    • NEBL Playoffs Fast Approaching As Teams Fight For Playoff Positions:
      Upcoming Games There are three weeks remaining in the NEBL regular season, as each game becomes even more critical, as teams are making their final playoff push. Below is the schedule for the upcoming games. Friday night at 9 p.m. - Cayo Western Ballaz at Belmopan Bandits Friday night at 9 p.m. - San Pedro Tiger Sharks at Belize City No Limit Saturday night at 8 p.m. - Smart Belize Hurricanes at Independence Thunderbolts Saturday night at 9 p.m. - San Pedro Tiger Sharks at Orange Walk Running Rebels Sunday at 1 p.m. - Independence Thunderbolts at Orange Walk Running Rebels.
    • United States to Donate $13 Million for Belize Law Enforcement:
      U. S. Ambassador to Belize H.E. Carlos Moreno and the Right Honorable Prime Minister Dean Barrow signed the 16th Amendment to the Letter of Agreement (LOA) implementing the International Narcotics and Law Enforcement Affairs (INL) program through the Central America Regional Security Initiative (CARSI) on April 7, 2016. The U.S. Government has provided over $35 million in programs and grants to Belize through the Central America Regional Security Initiative (CARSI) since 2008. Today’s agreement provides USD $6,450,000 in funding to be used for the following projects: Improved Border Inspection, Vetted Units, Capacity Enhancement, Justice Sector Reform, and Community Policing.
    • STAR Humor
    • Your Weekly Horoscope and Lucky Numbers
    • Letters to the Editor
    • Public Notices

    Blogs

    A Tropic Air Charter Over the Blue Hole of Belize: I’ve Been Waiting 9 Years for This!
    Yesterday, I flew with Tropic Air over the Great Blue Hole of Belize. The flight I’ve been dreaming of for about 9 years…and even though I have had guest bloggers post about it and I have been there in person on a boat AND I’ve seen pictures of this world famous sinkhole thousands of times, it was even better than I imagined. It was one of those “bursting with love for the place you live” moments. It’s miraculous. And corny as it sounds, I have never seen some of the blues I saw from up there. I was thinking of trying to identify them…to give you the “Pantone perspective”. At the very least, I was looking for lots of different synonyms for the word blue. color-thesaurus-correct-names-blue-shades But Pantone (the premier color system in the world)? You’ve got nothing on Belize. AND the word “arctic” doesn’t quite fit. I don’t have much more…so let me show you through pictures. It was a beautiful day as the five of us headed out… We swooped over the island and the main reef. Our pilot gave us information on what we were seeing and where we were heading.

    BELIZE'S WONDER WOMEN! Mrs. Kim Simplis Barrow
    Last month we announced that each month we will highlight individual stories of Belizean women from all parts of Belize doing their part to make this country great. To kickoff this campaign our first Belize Wonder Woman will be none other than Mrs. Kim Simplis Barrow!!! Mrs. Kim Simplis Barrow, wife of the Prime Minister and Special Envoy for Women & Children. Mrs. Kim Simplis Barrow is the wife of the Prime Minister of Belize, the Right Honorable Dean Barrow and Belize’s Special Envoy for Women and Children and Global Ambassador for Special Olympics since 2008 as well as the Founder and Director of the Lifeline Foundation, which raises thousands of dollars annually to aid disenfranchised children. Her two major projects as Special Envoy for Women and Children are a Paediatric and Neonatal Intensive Care Unit constructed at the Karl Heusner Memorial Hospital and The Inspiration Center which offers healthcare and therapy for children with disabilities.

    Explore the Cayes of Belize on a stand-up paddleboard
    If you stay current on hot recreation trends, you may already know that Stand Up Paddleboarding (SUP) has become North America’s favorite new aquatic sport. This thrilling adventure isn’t just for surfer dudes with sun-bleached hair! Folks of all ages are learning and loving SUP, so if your bucket list includes learning and mastering this activity, you’ll need an idyllic environment like Belize’s sheltered lagoons and the turquoise waters surrounding the Southern Barrier Reef to accomplish your wish. Does age matter? Not a bit. They’ve taken seniors on SUP adventures and they have the times of their lives. Not up for anything that requires checking your health insurance to make sure accidents are covered? Don’t be silly. Norm Hann and his skilled staff never met a person they couldn’t train to paddle board safely and at any age, so expect to enjoy the ride of a lifetime and return home with stories sure to make friends and work colleagues envious.

    I mean, who gets a whole private island for their birthday? (Hint: You’re looking at him)
    Your first thought when you step off the boat and on to Blackadore Caye is “This can not be real.” It is like a Hollywood movie set for a tropical island adventure film. The coconut trees seem too perfectly spaced to be real. The ground beneath them too perfectly swept clean. The sand too white. The water on either side of this long, narrow caye shimmers in variants of teal, turquoise and aquamarine. The dry, cool wind sweeps so sweetly upon the skin, not a drop of perspiration survives. The cloud-dappled sky is a dreamy blue — azure color #007FFF, if you are into replicating sky colors from an RGB color wheel. I walk south along a gently etched trail, marveling in the stillness broken only by the rustle of palm fronds in the breeze and the lapping of water against a rough limestone retaining wall. The palm tree oasis yields abruptly to a wall of dense, razor-sharp grasses, with a wide fresh path carved down the middle, beckoning me to walk on. But in the tall grass the wind dies. The dense air suffocates and boils. It feels almost malevolent how quickly the island’s personality changes. Not many steps in I opt to retreat to the palm trees and the gentle breeze.

    International Sourcesizz

    Almost US$2 billion needed to end poor housing in Caribbean
    Approximately US$1.8 billion would be needed to end poor housing conditions currently endured by 1 million residents in The Bahamas, Barbados, Guyana, Jamaica, Suriname, and Trinidad and Tobago, according to a new Inter-American Development Bank report, The State of Housing in Six Caribbean Countries. The report, which analyzed the implementation of social housing programmes in the Caribbean from 2000 to 2015, underscores the importance of housing to achieve the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) and the larger agenda in poverty alleviation, economic development, and climate resilience. Rapid urbanization has created a housing deficit in Caribbean, prompting a large share of the population to live in informal settlements that are disproportionately affected by landslides, flooding, and storm surges, the report says. Moreover, the absence of efficiently functioning land markets, inaccurate property registries, and land disputes have compounded the problem and slowed the pace of housing programmes. “Improving housing conditions in the Caribbean can have large impacts on poverty reduction, improving lives of a significant share of the population,’’ said Michael G. Donovan, IDB Senior Housing and Urban Development Specialist, one of the authors of the study.

    Caribbean Examinations Council to introduce electronic testing
    Caribbean Examinations Council (CXC) will soon allow students to take their examinations on a computer or electronic device. Announcing plans for a pilot later this month, CXC said the move towards electronic testing is in keeping with its commitment “to observe global quality standards in the delivery of examination services and deliver enhanced learner experiences through the consistent use of technology”. “Electronic testing will bring regional learners up to speed with worldwide test-taking practices and provide them with the flexibility to interact with images, video, audio and other resources during their examinations,” it explained. “CXC’s electronic testing format will adhere to world-class security standards which will guarantee the integrity of the test taking.”

    Videos

  • Great Belize Cooking - Episode 6: Toledo (Chocolate & Cohune Cabbage), 60min. Great Belize Cooking is the newest show produced by Great Belize Television - Channel 5. It is a travelling showcase of the different cultural foods and ingredients used within communities throughout the country of Belize.

  • Moho Chocolate Bars from Belize: We try each others W/ Me, Gabe, Seth, and Mom, 6min. Today we try the Moho chocolate bars we made at the chocolate factory in Belize during our Western Caribbean cruise on the Norwegian Dawn.

  • BSI ASR WEEKLY CROP REVIEW 2016 - WEEK 18, 3min.

  • Rock jumping into the pools at Big Rock Falls, 1min. Enjoying Belize!!!

  • Child Aid Toledo, a Humana People to People project in Belize, 5min. Humana People to People Child Aid Toledo build capacity and improve the lives of people in Toledo via production of organic vegetables

  • Best Belize Snorkeling - amazing snorkeling, 6min. qmazing snorkeling I hope you Enjoy it !

  • Belize 2016, 3.5min.

  • Tropic Air Flight Belize City to Dangriga, 17.5min. Took a tropic Air flight in a Cessna 208 from Belize City to Dangriga in February on our way to Hopkins Belize.

  • Belize Bird Rescue: Our latest success story, Pelican Release, 2min. These Brown Pelicans came to us with perforated pouches and suffering from a heavy parasite load. One was banded and had come all the way all the way from North Carolina. After about 3 weeks of TLC they had made a full recovery and were anxious to get back to where they belong in the wild. Amanda Margraves and David Morrow transported them to a beach near Belize City where they eagerly flew off.

    April 13, 2016


    FOR TODAY'S BELIZE WEATHER, CLICK HERE

    Click for our Daily Tropical Weather Report.

    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


    Ambergris Today

    Belize Takes Steps Towards Online E-Government
    The Belize Fisheries Department and Belize Forest Department announced the launch of the Belize Electronic License and Permit System (BELAPS) on April 6, 2016. This means that fishermen or loggers can now sign up to apply for their license online. This is being provided under the Ministry of Agriculture, Fisheries, Forestry, the Environment and Sustainable Development, with support from the Taiwan International Cooperation and Development Fund (ICDF), and in partnership with Central Information Technology Office (CITO).

    Is Zika Already in Belize? Health Officials Monitor Situation
    The Ministry of Health this past weekend conducted a field investigation based on the reported case of Zika by the Center for Disease Control and Prevention and based on the provisional data they provided. The field investigation revealed two local potential cases, one in the Stann Creek District and the other in the Toledo District. A person of interest was also identified from the Cayo District. Samples were taken from the persons in the southern districts and will be sent to the Caribbean Public Health Agency (CARPHA) today, Tuesday, April 12, 2016, for testing. CARPHA is Belize’s Regional Referral Laboratory in Trinidad. On April 6, 2016, Ministry of Health officials received a communication message from the United States International Health Regulations National Focal Point regarding a confirmed case of Zika detected in the U.S. According to the Centers for Disease Control (CDC), the transmission may have originated in Belize. The CDC reported that, “The patient is an adult female resident who travelled to Belize from 14 -19 March 2016. She had onset of fever and rash on 23 March, 2016. Zika virus RT-PCR was positive on serum at the health department of the state. The patient reported no other recent travel history and there was no evidence of possible sexual transmission.”

    Misc Belizean Sourcesmzz

    BHA at the Ottawa Travel and Vacation Show
    Last weekend, April 9 and 10, The Belize Hotel Association, was in Ottawa, Canada, at the 22nd Annual Ottawa Travel and Vacation Show which was held at the Shaw Centre (formerly known as the Ottawa Convention Center) The show was an immense success and the Belize Hotel Association booth was visited by over 500 attendees who were very interested in finding vacation packages and hotel and tour packages to Belize. Before the end of the day, emails were already coming in to the BHA from visitors to the booth who were planning their next vacation in Belize. Also in attendance, were two major Canadian Tour operators who are currently selling Belize hotel and expedition packages, but wanted to broaden their market, to include more hotels and tour options to offer to their clients. The Ottawa Travel and Vacation Show was attended by over 14, 000 visitors, and more than 200 exhibitors from around the world! Board Director Ted Tejada and Marketing Director Tessie Duran Tonaco represented the Belize Hotel Association at the show.

    BELTRAIDE SHOWCASES ITS WORK AT CJC BUSINESS EXPO!
    On Friday, April 8th 2016, the Corozal Junior College (CJC) held its annual Business Expo where 31 companies from the Corozal and Orange Walk Districts displayed information on their products ranging from candles, food and drinks, arts and crafts, agricultural services and many others. BELTRAIDE was among those exhibiting companies and its booth showcased numerous brochures on the work of its various units. A central feature of the booth was a video presentation on the work carried out by Beltraide’s four technical units: BelizeINVEST, EXPORTBelize, SBDCBelize and BTEC. Prospective young entrepreneurs visiting the booth obtained information on how to establish a business and where to get assistance to create their market and business plans. In addition, all visitors to the booth received a copy of Invest Belize Magazine, a BELTRAIDE publication aimed at keeping the business community informed on current events.

    Power interruption 8:00am to 1:00pm Friday, April 15, Cayo District
    Area along George Price Highway in San Ignacio Town between Kontiki & Santa Elena, entire Santa Elena, Cristo Rey, San Antonio, Santa Cruz, Red Creek, Esperanza, Baking Pot Rd, Billy White and Duck Run 1 & 2. Two 15-minute power interruptions 8:00am to 8:15am & 12:45pm to 1:00pm will also affect Central Farm, Georgeville & Unitedville. BEL to replace insulators, epoxilators & cement poles, re-tension high tension conductor, install gang switch, relocate utility poles and conduct line clearing in the area.

    Education Month Theme Competition
    The Ministry of Education is having a theme competition for Education Month. You could win $500! "The Education Month Planning Committee invites students, teachers and the general public to submit themes for Education Month 2016. The focus of this year’s theme is "LITERACY - the ability to read and write." CASH PRIZE: $500.00!!!!!

    I Rave Music Festival
    The I Rave Music Festival is the Saturday, at Thirsty Thursdays. D!rty Jok3s will be there!!! They'll have the full rave lighting too. These are the real DJ's of Belize. "The first annual I-RaVE Music Festival! Bringing it for the first time in Belize. A full blown EDM experience For all the edmaholics. This epic! Be there! Music by deejays that love the genre as much as you do! Sponsored by smart, fiesta fm, dcatch and red square vodka. All happening inside thirsty thursdays san ignacio"

    Get to know the Hol Chan staff
    Mr. Eldgar Badillo (left) and Mr. Javier Bardalez (right) are valuable members of the technical arm of Hol Chan that is responsible for biodiversity monitoring and enforcement. Hol Chan thanks them for their hard work and dedication.

    Hol Chan Marine Reserve, Los Salones Conservation Area
    No longer just reef but so much more. BIRDS!!! Los Salones Conservation area is a beautiful part of the Hol Chan that few ever get to see. Here are some pictures to let everyone know that the western portion of Ambergris Caye also has a lot to offer.

    Crooked Tree Village Bird & Fish Festival
    April 16, 10am - 6pm. Live steel pan entertainment.

    Channel 7

    Bze-Guat Diplomats Search For A Sarstoon Solution
    Things have been heating up on the Sarstoon - but, while that southern flashpoint simmers, diplomats from both Belize and Guatemala have been trying to take the hostility down a few notches in bi-lateral talks. Those talks happened last week Friday in Benque Viejo Town, at the OAS Adjacency Zone Office. High ranking Political, Diplomatic and military leaders of both sides engaged in frank discussions on how to defuse tensions in the Sarstoon area. This evening in Belmopan, Foreign Affairs Minister Wilfred Elrington, Ambassador Assad Shoman, and the Ministry of Foreign Affairs hosted a press conference to update the nation on what exactly came out of those meetings.

    Proposals For Peace On The Sarstoon
    So, as you heard, the Belize delegation has come up with a draft protocol specifically tailored to the Sarstoon which, if is approved by Guatemala, should significantly improve both civilian and military interactions in the Sarstoon River. That could mean that, hypothetically, SATIIM, the BDF and possibly even the Belize Territorial Volunteers could enter the Sarstoon with no resistance from the Guatemalan military. The Guatemalan delegation which attended last Friday's meeting has agreed to take it back to their principals for discussion, so the approval is still pending. At today's press conference, Foreign Minister Elrington disclosed the proposals that Guatemala will respond to after consideration. Here they are in full detail:

    An SUV Smashed Sara
    A 21-year-old woman was knocked down and killed in Dangriga Town this morning. Reports are that at around 10:30, Sara Suchite was coming out of a taxi at a mile and a half on the Stann Creek Valley Road. Police say she dashed across the road, which is when an oncoming SUV driven by Elroy Coleman knocked her down. She was flung a distance and died on the spot from her injuries. Coleman is an ambulance driver for the Southern Regional Hospital. He had just left work in his personal vehicle. He has been served with a notice of intended prosecution. A urine sample was taken, but police say there were no indications that he had been drinking.

    Police Still Looking For Cawich Bridge Killers
    No one has been charged as yet for the murder of Maya Mopan resident Luis Ortiz. Police told us today that 2 of the 6 persons detained have been released and that they continue to investigate this case. As we told you, Luis Ortiz and another friend were hanging out at La Cabana and were about to leave at around 3 Sunday morning when another acquaintance asked for a ride - but 3 of his friends also jumped in the car. One of the 3 men told Ortiz to stop at the cemetery- that is when one of them hit Ortiz's friend over the head, dragged him out of the car, beat him up and threw him in the cemetery. He escaped but Ortiz couldn't because they took him to the riverside near Agripino Cawich Bridge in Camalote, bashed his head in and dumped him and his car in the river. His car and body were found after 11 on Sunday morning. Police still can't establish a motive but say they are looking into the matter closely.

    Human Development Intervenes To Assist With Molestation of Cerebral Palsy Child
    Police are making some progress in the Dangriga child abuse case. As we told you last night, a15 year old girl with Cerebral Palsy was sexually molested by her stepfather. The girl told her mother that whenever the babysitter would leave, her stepfather would touch her breast, vagina and buttocks. As we mentioned the police can't handle this case alone. They need help from a professional who can communicate with, understand and record a proper statement from the child. Well, they have found someone and will meet with that person on Thursday in Belize City. Human Development is also working along with the police in this case. We will give you an update on Friday as to what came out of that meeting and if police had enough information to detain the stepfather.

    She Axed Dad's Head
    It was a bloody Sunday in Sandhill for 84 year old Nicholas Ozaeta - after his own daughter chopped him in the head with axe. Lily Ozaeta, was locked down overnight and charged for aggravated assault with an axe and wounding. According to the police report, Ozaeta walked onto her father's veranda at 9:30 on Sunday morning, and the only thing he remembers is hearing a loud noise, and realizing that he had been hit in his head, which caused him to topple over his veranda railing and falling unconscious. When he woke up, he saw an axe lying on the ground beside him. Today in court, Lily Ozaeta pleaded guilty to wounding saying "Yes I did attack my father with an axe in the head causing a cut wound." She told Magistrate Carlon Mendoza, "I think everyone was taking my mother for a fool and I am the only one man enough to stand up for her".

    The 19th is For Settlement, April 12 Is For Banishment To The Bay Islands
    We all have November 19 marked on our calendars as Garifuna Settlement Day, a holiday set aside to celebrate all things Garifuna. But did you know that today, April 12, is also important to the Garinagu? The Garifuna scholars tell us that on this day 219 years ago, in 1797, the British rounded up just over 2000 ancestors of the Garifuna after they were defeated in the Second Carib War. They were then transported from their homeland of Saint Vincent, and then dumped on Roatan, Honduras, in a sort of exile. Those ancestors, left to fend for themselves in a foreign land, had to survive, and in the years immediately following that expulsion, started migrating to other parts of Central America, such as Nicaragua, Belize, and Guatemala. So, instead of commemorating it as the day they were forced out of their homes, they observe it as Survival Day, the time when those ancestors had to adapt to a new way of life.

    NGC Considering Stirm's Apology
    While we had the opportunity, we asked these Garifuna elders if they accept Pastor Scott Stirm's apology. 11 days ago, the National Evangelical Association of Belize called a press conference in which Stirm apologised, but members of the Garifuna community who back Stirm also declared their support for what he had to say about the revered Dugu ceremony. We got a reaction from the NGC today, and here's what they told us: Roy Cayetano, Advisor, National Garifuna Council: "If I may, my own thinking is that the gentleman is irrelevant. His marshaling Garifuna people to speak against their own people is evidence of a serious weakness in the socialization of our people and the schooling that our people get. Whoever reported to him was lying and he perpetuated the lies."

    Bus Driver Charged For Cyclist's Death
    A bus driver has been charged for knocking down and killing Hattieville resident Jason Robinson. The driver, Franco Audinett was charged with one count of manslaughter by negligence, causing death by careless conduct, and drove motor vehicle without due care and attention. The incident happened on Friday March 18th between miles 16 and 17 on the Western Highway. Robinson was heading to Belize City on his bicycle when he was knocked down by a Shaw's Bus heading in the same direction. His body was mangled and pinned beneath the bus's front bumper. The driver claims he did not see Robinson and as soon as he did he swerved but it was too late. Robinson's family also maintains that he was way on the side of the road - out of traffic. Today in court, Audinett was granted bail of $5000 plus one surety which he met this evening. His next court date is set for June 10th.

    Seine Byte Mother Pleads For Missing Daughter
    A mother from Seine Bight village came to out studio this afternoon in distress- that's because her daughter has gone missing. She is 14 year old Drina Stevens, a second former at George Town Technical High School. The family says that the last time any of them saw her was last week Wednesday. Now with almost 7 days since her disappearance the family is desperate. Her mother recounted the last time she saw her daughter. Laverne Arzu, Mother: "Every morning I usually wake them up before I go to work. I woke her up that day and then I woke the rest of the children to go and check if she go to school. That day they saw her change up, pick up her bag and went off towards the bus. So they saw her going towards the bus, but they didn't see if she had gotten on the bus. They thought she was in the bus and that she went to school, but then afterwards when the bus came in the evening, my brother went and wait for the bus to see when she comes off. But apparently he didn't see her come off, so he walk home and asked me if she came home already. I told him that she didn't reach home as yet. He says that he came to check, because he thought I had overlooked her. I told him that she didn't reach."

    Sixteen Shoulder To Shoulder With Saldivar
    The UDP special convention for First Deputy Leader isn't happening until the last weekend in May, and even though John Saldivar and Patrick Faber are only fighting for the votes of about 300 delegates or so - judging by the war in mainstream and social media, you'd think this was a general election! John Saldivar today posted another major endorsement lineup on his Facebook page. 16 of the party's 31 standard bearers and representatives are seen supporting him, posted under the caption "maximum unity." The post says the picture was taken today in Belmopan and we note that it includes Gaspar Vega - the outgoing first Deputy who has been reluctant to show his hand in any party matters since he abruptly resigned two months ago. Notably Saldivar has 13 of the party's 19 elected representatives in his camp. But, according to the UDP's party whip, Michael Finnegan all those political stripes don't count for much more than 16 votes in a delegates race, where even he can't whip all his delegates into a single line:..

    She Wrote The Book On Maya Medicine
    Today saw the launch of the first ever book on Maya Herbal Medicine. It is a straightforward guide to all the medicinal secrets of the ancient Maya. It was authored by a well-known Maya cultural revivalist, Aurora Garcia Saqui. She launched the book today at the Image Factory in Belize City and Emanuel Pech was there to find out more. This assortment of herbal medicines were on display today at a local book launch. They are traditional Mayan remedies for diabetes, common cold, heart burn, skin rash and just about anything else you can think of. It is centuries of medicinal knowledge passed on through the generations are all encapsulated in this one book. The author Aurora Garcia Saqui, is definitely no stranger to Belize. In 2013 she launched her first book- which focused on traditional Mayan cuisine. She is also a well-known Maya craftswoman and slate carver. Now while Garcia has always had an enduring interest in keeping her culture alive, this piece on traditional Mayan medicine was particularly close to her heart because it was inspired by her late Great uncle.

    No Easy Answers For OAS Adjacency
    At the top of the news, we told you about the press conference that Foreign Affairs Minister Wilfred Elrington and Ambassador Assad Shoman hosted to discuss the Belize/Guatemala bilateral talks, which happened last week Friday. The main topic was the 11-point draft proposal that the Belize Delegation has proposed to diffuse tensions in the Sarstoon. But, they also discussed how they will raise the funds to keep the OAS Office in the Adjacency Zone open. As we've reported, it costs 2.5 million US dollars per year to run the office - and the Group of Friendly Nations who pay the bills are getting antsy because, 8 years after the office opened, both sides are still at a stalemate. Elrington told us about the latest deliberations on the endangered OAS Adjacency Zone office:

    TR Shine's Trip To Jazzfest May Be Cancelled Because He Was Rejected For Visa
    Well-known Belizean artist Ivan "TR Shine" should be in the last phases of preparation for the biggest gig of his life: the New Orleans Jazzfest one week from now. After all, the headliners for that event include: Snoop Dogg, Flo-Rida, Lauryn Hill, Pearl Jam, The Red Hot Chili Peppers and Stevie Wonder. But the 2 time National Song Competition Champion might very well be missing one the greatest opportunities of his career. That's because his visa application was rejected by the US Embassy for a drug charge seven years ago. Now with only 10 days left for the start of the jazz festival TR Shine is appealing to the Government of Belize to somehow intervene. Ivan "TR Shine" Burgess, Belizean artist: "Basically the whole issue arise of a single charge that I had year ago upon applying for an American visa, a P3 Visa, which is an artist working Visa and I was denied the Visa. But the real reason for the interview would be that we are pleading for some format of diplomatic something from our government in order to have us attain this P3 Visa in order to go and work in the New Orleans Jazz Festival, which we have been selected to go and represent our country."

    Karate Kids Made The Chet Challenge
    5 kids from the House of Shotokan Karate Academy brought back 9 medals from the Martial Arts Championships in Chetumal. The Karate kids participated in a number of categories and garnered 2nd and 3rd place medals. Today we spoke to the Grand Master of the Academy and he told us what this win means to the Karate community. We also spoke to 2 of the winners about the fight challenge in Chet. Samara Vasquez won 2 medals in Women Karate forms and Kata. Hera Kumsal won a medal in the 6-7 year old children division. The winners from this tournament will now participate in another Karate competition in June in Cancun.

    Channel 5

    A First Look at Eleven-point Draft Bilateral Agreement on Sarstoon
    High-level government and military officials from Belize and Guatemala met at O.A.S. headquarters in the adjacency zone to discuss rules of engagement in the Sarstoon last Friday. The draft rules [...]

    Was Draft Agreement Well Received by Guatemalan Counterparts?
    On the face of it, those proposals should be a tough sell considering Guatemala’s recently very aggressive position in the Sarstoon. At the highest levels of government in that republic, [...]

    Ambassador Assad Shoman Says Nothing is Etched in Stone as Yet
    Seasoned negotiator and expert in the field of Guatemala dispute, Ambassador Shoman, explained that nothing at this point is set in stone despite first perception. Still, he asserts that the [...]

    Do Belizeans Need to Consult Guatemalan Army to Traverse Sarstoon River?
    Since we had the experts in the room, News Five also asked about the mysterious current protocols governing the Sarstoon. We’re referring to those purported protocols which dictate that Belizean [...]

    FCD Says Environs of Valentin Camp a Hotbed for Incursions
    The official jury is still out on the shooting of B.D.F. Staff Sergeant Richard Lambey on Holy Saturday. There has been progress in the multiple subsequent investigations, enough for a [...]

    Monitoring the Chiquibul Forest Remains a Challenge for B.D.F. and FCD Rangers
    The Friends for Conservation and Development is responsible for the monitoring and management of the Chiquibul, an area roughly the size of Belize City. It’s a challenging task, to say [...]

    A Call for B.D.F. to Increase Presence in Marijuana Growing Areas of Chiquibul
    Illegal milpa farming may be the biggest challenge facing rangers in the Chiquibul, but the most dangerous one is drug cultivation which has been on the rise. Manzanero says that [...]

    Do You Think Guatemalan Armed Forces Can Be Stopped in Exerting Sovereignty Over the Sarstoon?
    And our question for tonight is: Do you think the Guatemalan Armed Forces can be stopped in exerting sovereignty over the Sarstoon? Send your comments and responses using your SMART [...]

    Belizean Artists to Represent at 2016 New Orleans Jazz & Heritage Festival
    Several Belizean artists and bands have been selected for an opportunity of a lifetime; to represent Belize in the 2016 New Orleans Jazz and Heritage Festival. Popularly known as the [...]

    TR Shine Denied Visa to Attend Upcoming Music Festival
    The festival is set for next week and the Belizean artists are to head to New Orleans next Monday. But there’s a major hiccup because all members of TR’s band [...]

    An Elderly Sand Hill Resident is Assaulted with Axe During Family Dispute
    An elderly Sand Hill resident was hit on the head with an axe in a family dispute this past Sunday in the village. Eighty-four year old Nicholas Ozaeta Senior had [...]

    Jack Charles Takes Employees to Court for Stealing Triple-A Batteries
    Businessman Jitendra Chawla was in the headlines and in court earlier this year over rice importation. Today, Chawla took three employees to court for stealing from his store a pack [...]

    No Charges In Weekend Murder of Luis Ortiz
    There are still no charges being brought against six men who were detained for the murder of Maya Mopan resident, Luis Ortiz. Ortiz was killed on Sunday morning; his body [...]

    Dangriga Police Investigate Allegation of Sex Crime Against Disabled Minor
    Dangriga Police are currently awaiting the results of an evaluation to determine if a minor in that jurisdiction is able to provide a statement to them. The minor has cerebral [...]

    219th Anniversary of Garifuna Survival
    November nineteenth, is a national holiday celebrated as Garifuna Settlement Day. But today is Survival Day; it commemorates the anniversary of the arrival of the first group of Garifuna to [...]

    NGC Responds to Comments on Garifuna Spirituality
    The firestorm that erupted in the wake of inflammatory comments made by Pastor Scott Stirm about Garifuna spirituality has since died down.  However, the issue is very much alive within [...]

    Should Garifuna Community Have Joined in on Indigenous Land Rights Claim?
    The Maya land rights case over the entitlement of the indigenous community to occupy and use land communally in southern Belize remains before the high courts.  Despite a landmark ruling [...]

    A Book on Mayan Herbal Medicine
    Aurora Saqui is a versatile Mayan woman who has taken on numerous creative roles. Today, she donned her hat as a writer and released a book on herbal remedies following [...]

    Belize Sign to be Launched in Fort George
    A second Belize sign, similar to the multicolored monument prominently on display at the Seashore Children’s Park in Buttonwood Bay, will be inaugurated by the Belize City Council on Wednesday.  [...]

    House of Shotokan Prevails in Weekend Karate Tournament
    A group of five karatekas from the House of Shotokan Karate Academy headed to Chetumal over the weekend where they participated in an invitational martial arts tournament.  The event drew [...]

    Where is 14-year-old Drina Stevens?
    Where is fourteen year old Drina Stevens? That’s the question that her mother Lavern Arzu is asking as it’s been almost a week since the second form student of Georgetown [...]

    CTV3

    Teacher Broaden Their Knowledge On The Belize/Guatemala Dispute
    Some weeks ago more than a hundred Belizean teachers visited Belize’s southwestern border with Guatemala. During the trip the teachers got a chance to see some of the different cross-border issues at play between the neighboring Villages of Belize's Jalacte and Guatemala's Santa Cruz. Following this trip the Belize Teachers Union decided that as educators of this country they need to take a stand and learn more about the Belize – Guatemala territorial dispute and the possibility of taking this issue to the International Court of Justice-ICJ. As a way to inform and educate teachers on this national issue the Belize Teacher’s Union has organized a forum this coming Friday, where teachers from across the country will be given the opportunity to listen to the pros and cons of Belize going to the ICJ and later will be given the opportunity to cast an informed vote on the matter to determine the official stand of the BNTU. Today when we spoke to president of BNTU Orange Walk, Otilio Munoz, he told us more about the objective of the event.

    Is Gaspar Vega Backing Up John Saldivar?
    On May 29th the United Democratic Party will hold it convention to elect a new First Deputy Leader after Deputy Prime Minister Gaspar Vega left the seat vacant when he announced that he will no longer seek re-election at the next General Elections and did not want to continue as the First Deputy Leader of the party. Vega’s decision paved the way for John Saldivar and Patrick Faber who so far are the only two candidates who have launched their campaign for the position. Both men have been garnering support from fellow parliamentarians hoping that they can entice the delegates of their area to vote for them in the convention. So far nearly all UDP Ministers have indicated who they are siding with expected for the outgoing First Deputy Leader Gaspar Vega, who told the media the last time he was asked who he will support that he was yet to make a decision.

    CJC Students Say No to Alcohol And Drugs
    For this entire week Corozal Junior College will be celebrating Drug Awareness Week under the theme “Drugs are Bullies Don’t Let Them Destroy Your School Life”. Today the focus was on alcohol, the most commonly used addictive substance in the country. Two persons were invited to share their testimony with students and their experiences served as an eye opener to the future leaders of the country. Counselor Elvie Samos – Corozal Junior College: “Drugs is a problem for all of us, it is a problem in our society all over the world and drugs is everybody’s business you know if we are going to mold these young minds here at school then we need to make them aware of everything that is happening and that is why I decided to invite two persons that were on drugs and they shared their testimony with the students and to bring awareness for them that they can make better choices as a matter of fact there is a recent there was a recent research that was done by NDACC that sated that most of our teen drug users are between the ages of 14 and 16 so we need to bring this awareness to our students.”

    Trial Farm Resident In Financial Need To Seek Treatment
    On Easter Sunday eighteen year old Luis Fernando Lopez was assaulted on Mahogany Street in the village of Trial Farm while he was on his way home after shopping at a Chinese store. The incident played out at around 8:30 that night and as a result of the attack, Lopez was severely injured and was left abandoned inside a trench. Lopez was then transported to the Karl Heusner Memorial Hospital due to the grave condition that he was in. However, today we can tell you that the teenager remains in a critical state at this point in time and will be traveling to Chetumal tomorrow to seek medical attention. Earlier this morning we visited the victim’s mother, Laura Lopez, who spoke to us about her son’s condition and since she is unable to cover all the medical expenses, she took the opportunity to ask the public for assistance.

    Will Guatemala Accept Belize's Proposal To Reduce Tension At The Sarstoon?
    As we shared previously, the Ministry of Foreign Affairs today held a briefing where it presented the 11 points of the draft proposal for a protocol in the Sarstoon area. The agreement should set down the operational guidelines for peace to be maintained between Belize and Guatemala until the territorial dispute is definitively resolved. The opposition’s representative in the Belize Guatemala talks, Ambassador Assad Shoman said that there are some encouraging signs for the acceptance of those protocols based on the bilateral meeting held in Benque last Friday: “Something that we learnt from the side for example were quite encouraging if true, because as you we can’t really trust anybody in this situation we are hoping that people will keep their word and so on we are hoping that truth prevails but we always have to be in our guards but the Foreign Minister of Guatemala did tell us that he has met with the 22 members of the Foreign Affairs committee of congress and that they have expressed support for sending the Protocol to amend the Special Agreement because as we know right...”

    LOVE FM

    Teenager Killed in Road Traffic Incident
    36-year-old Eleoy Coleman has been served with a notice of intended prosecution. This follows a fatal road traffic accident that occurred in Dangriga this morning. Correspondent Harry Arzu has the story. HARRY ARZU “Police are investigating a fatal road traffic accident that occurred here this morning sometime around 10:40am around mile 1 and half on […]

    Belize and Mexico Holds First Meeting Following MOU Signing
    There is a negotiating group comprising of both Belizeans and Mexicans who are looking at how they can reach a bilateral agreement on trans-boundary hydrocarbon reservoirs. To simplify it, Belize and Mexico are looking to place a temporary moratorium on drilling and extraction activities for hydrocarbons. The two teams met yesterday for a first official […]

    UNIBAM’s Assessments Ignored by Government Ministers
    The Executive Director for the United Belize Advocacy Movement, UNIBAM, has prepared a document that serves as an assessment on Belize’s responsibility to its lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender citizens. In that 28-page document is written with the aim of highlighting the context of LGBT rights in Belize and how they are being ignored when […]

    Belize Presents Proposals to Guatemala Regarding Sarstoon
    A briefing on the latest meeting between officials from Belize and Guatemala held last Friday at the OAS Adjacency Zone office was conducted today at the NEMO’s Conference Room in Belmopan. Chief Executive Officer in the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Ambassador Lawrence Sylvester, opened the session this evening just after four o’clock. Foreign Affairs Minister […]

    Guatemalan Military Misinforms SATIIM; No New Protocol on the Sarstoon
    On Wednesday, April 6 the Executive Director for SATIIM, Froyla Salam spoke to Love News on an incident in which they were met on the bank of the Sarstoon by the Guatemalan Military. Salam says that they were on a scheduled patrol when the Guatemalan Armed Forces approached them in an aggressive manner. A report […]

    Communication Component on Climate Change Needs Strengthening
    The efforts being made by various organizations including the Government of Belize and the investments being put into climate change adaptations have been countless. It is a phenomenon that is being attributed to the changes in weather worldwide and a major factor when it comes to marine life, agriculture and the environment. If not urgently […]

    Re-Registration and Re-Districting on The Horizon
    Since early 2015 several factions have been calling for a re-registration of voters and the subsequent re-districting of electoral divisions. The Vision Inspired by the People and the People’s United Party have demanded that such an exercise take place and the recommendation has come from the observer mission of the Organization of American States following […]

    Don Eligio’s Niece Publishes Book on Maya Herbal Medicines
    Aurora Garcia Saqui of Maya Centre Village is a well-known natural Mayan healer. Today, Saqui released her second book, this one focusing on Maya Herbal Medicines. Saqui is one the five “Garcia Sisters” who is said to have begun slate carving in Belize. We spoke to Saqui and she told us what inspired her to […]

    2 of 3 Fishermen Arraigned for Undersized Conch
    Two fishermen, Higinio Rivero and Juan Munoz, were charged with possession of market clean undersized conch when they appeared today before Magistrate Deborah Rogers. According to the allegation, Rivero had 40 undersized conch and Munoz had 90. They pled not guilty to the charge. They were each offered a self-bail of one thousand dollars but […]

    Doc Speaks of Works in the Cayo North Division
    Dr Omar Figueroa first came into political office in in January 2015 when a bi-election occurred in the Cayo North constituency. Upon his election to office, Prime Minister Dean Barrow awarded him with the post of Minister of State in the Ministry of Agriculture, Fisheries, Forestry, Environment and Sustainable Development. Minister Figueroa has not been […]

    PlusTV

    Maya Mopan man murdered; body dumped in Belize River
    A Belmopan resident of Maya Mopan was murdered on Sunday morning, his body thrown into the Belize River near Agripinno CAwich bridge, the bridge leading towards Valley of Peace. The victim was 39 year old Luis Ostuardo Ortiz , also known as “Chapin”. According to police, sometime after 3:00 a.m....

    Prisoner escapes from police; family questions police account
    A resident of Belmopan was detained on Friday for questioning in a rape investigation. The individual apparently escaped police custody and the family took the matter to Facebook after they say police harassed them and accused them of helping the individual to escape. The allegations on facebook in...

    Ministry of Health still can’t confirm Zika case in Belize
    Ministry of Health in Belize says it still cannot confirm there is a first local transmission case of Zika in Belize despite reports from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention which indicated that an American most likely contracted the Zika Virus while on a trip to Belize. A statement issue...

    Caribbean Investment Holdings limited refutes ”Panama Paper” claims
    Caribbean Investment Holdings Limited (CIHL), the parent company of Belize Bank on Monday issued a press release to refute allegations made earlier this month by the International Consortium of Investigative Journalists (ICIJ), the group which published the now infamous Panama papers. . The leak cov...

    Aggravated Burglary in Camalote area
    There are reports of a home invasion, legally known as “aggravated burglary”, which happened early Monday morning in the Camalote/Roaring Creek Area. We don’t have the details at this time, but neither do the police, who says the victims are too traumatized to give a clear account of what transpired...

    Clayton White remanded for machete attack
    There was a chopping incident reported in Belize City on Saturday morning which landed Douglas Flores, Jr., in hospital, and his alleged assailant, 45 year old Clayton White, behind bars. White is accused of attempted murder, dangerous harm and use of deadly means of harm against Douglas Flores Jr.,...

    Guatemalan racks up offenses in court
    A Guatemalan shoe shiner from the San Martin area of Belmopan found himself in trouble with the law in Belize city after first being caught with crack cocaine and then trying to evade police. 32 year old Victor Sagastume is serving concurrent sentences amounting to ten months in prison on multiple c...

    UDP set date for deputy leader convention
    At a special meeting of its National Party Council, the United Democratic Party (UDP) set Sunday, May 29th, as the date for a convention to elect the first deputy party leader, who would replace the retiring Gaspar Vega. The convention will take place at the ITVET Grounds in Belize City. The party’s...

    Child with cerebral palsy sexually molested by stepfather
    A child with cerebral palsy was sexually molested by her stepfather. The mother of the child went to Stann Creek police to rAeport the matter, sayinSg that on March 31, when she got home from work, she looked at her daughter who has Cerebral Palsy and is unable to speak and walk and saw that the c... -->

    Amandala

    Driver, 39, murdered by 3 passengers
    Luis Ortiz, 39, a carpenter, was found dead in the Belize River by the police at 10:45 a.m. on Sunday, April 10. Sergeant Marla Joseph, the Deputy Commander of Roaring Creek Police Station, told Amandala that they had received information at approximately 3:00 a.m., regarding a fight in front of the Roaring Creek Cemetery. Acting upon the information, Joseph said, they visited the area and found Jose Gonzalez, 40, suffering from injuries to his head and abrasions to the back. Gonzalez told police that he was socializing at La Cabana Nightclub with Ortiz and some other friends. Gonzalez later left the nightclub with Ortiz, who was supposedly giving another friend a ride to Teakettle. However, three other men jumped in the back seat of Ortiz’s green 1999 Chevy Prism vehicle, where Gonzalez was seated, Gonzalez said. Upon reaching in front of the Roaring Creek Cemetery, Gonzalez said, he and Ortiz were assaulted by the men, who then threw Gonzalez out the vehicle and continued beating him and left him to die in the bushes off the highway.

    Markel Pitts, 19, pulled from KHMH life support machine
    Last Thursday evening, around 7:30, four young men were hanging out at the corner of Marage Road and Compassion Lane in Ladyville when a gunman approached and made a target of one of the young men, firing about seven shots at him. Some of the gunman’s bullets found their mark, hitting Markel Pitts twice in the stomach and once in the arm. The 19-year-old Pitts, was rushed to the Karl Heusner Memorial Hospital, where he was admitted in a critical condition and put on life support. On Friday evening, however, Pitts was pulled from the life support machine, unbeknownst to family members, who have subsequently refused to grant an interview to our newspaper. Pitts’ mother, when Amandala approached her today for an interview, pointedly said, “I don’t want to speak to no media.”

    Judge rules for Allyson Major against GSU and Attorney General
    A man who was arrested, charged and imprisoned under the provison of the Amendment to the Firearms Act decided to seek redress in a constitutional claim against two Gang Suppression Unit (GSU) police officers and the Attorney General of Belize. This morning, Madam Justice Michelle Arana ruled that his constitutional right not to be deprived of his liberty had been violated. Allyson Major, a security guard who was charged with unlicensed firearm and ammunition possession brought the claim that his constitutional rights were violated when he was arrested, charged and held in prison for 38 days before securing bail from the Supreme Court on May 17, 2012. Justice Arana awarded general damages of $6,000 and special damages of $6,050 to Major. The judgment also declared that the arrest and trial of Major for the offences of “kept firearm without a gun license and kept ammunition without a gun license” infringed on his constitutional right of presumption of innocence as contained in Belize Constitution. The judge also awarded cost of court to Major, although that figure has not been agreed upon as yet.

    Ashcroft company asks US to seize $38 mil from Belize
    The United States Supreme Court has invited US Solicitor General Donald Verrilli to file a brief expressing the federal government’s point of view in a rare case asking the US authorities to move against the assets of a foreign government in fulfillment of an international arbitration award. That case, involving the Government of Belize, on the one hand, and the Ashcroft Alliance, on the other, is pursuant to a US$19 million award dating back to March 2009, in favor of Belize Telemedia Limited (BTL). Amandala sources say that within the last two weeks, there has been a decision by the US Federal Supreme Court, which has agreed to hear the Belize case, which, we were told “is either the single or one of two cases which the US Supreme Court says it will hear.” The court is said to be the final authority in the US on the matter. Of note is that the Ashcroft Alliance had claimed that the London Court of International Arbitration (LCIA) award of US$19 million runs only up to February 27, 2009, and does not reflect any monies the claimant deems may be due after that date.

    Garifuna stalwart, Celeo Álvarez Casildo, dies at 57 from throat cancer
    Afro-descendants of Central America, and especially the Garifuna community, are mourning the loss of Don Celeo Álvarez Casildo, who became known to us at Kremandala for his leadership role in the Central American Black Organization (CABO), based in his home country, Honduras, as well as his founding role in the Organization for Ethnic Community Development (ODECO), which helped to establish CABO in the 1990s. Amandala received news today that Álvarez, 57, who had been diagnosed with throat cancer, passed away at 10:45 this morning at a hospital in Tegucigalpa. Over the weekend, doctors had taken a decision to end his treatment. Sources close to Álvarez said that he had been seeking cancer treatment both at home and in Cuba, and he had also undergone two surgeries to fight his condition. Teofilo Colon, Jr., who runs an online site dedicated to the Garifuna cause, beinggarifuna.com, said Álvarez is noted for his championing of the rights of Afro-Descendants in Latin America.

    Bring it on! GOB attorney welcomes Maya lawsuits
    The Toledo Maya this week triggered a new round of litigation in the decades-long Maya Land Rights struggle which envisions a homeland for the Kekchi and Mopan Maya communities of southern Belize spanning roughly 800 square miles (or 500,000 acres). This time, the Toledo Alcaldes Association (TAA) is calling on the courts to enforce their land rights, as declared by the Supreme Court and Court of Appeal, and affirmed by the Caribbean Court of Justice, following a consent order by the court, which was issued a year ago, after the disputing parties agreed on all central points in the claim, except the question of monetary awards to the claimants. “I think personally, as an individual—not speaking on behalf of the Government, but speaking from my knowledge—it might be a good thing for the Maya to bring these cases and get a clarification—which I think they badly need—as to the limits on the rights that they have under the [CCJ] consent order,” Denys Barrow, SC, attorney for the Government, told Amandala. We were unable to reach Barrow on Thursday, when we wrote our first story, but we were able to get his reaction to the new lawsuits today.

    Bandits and Police win PLB semifinals Game 1
    There will be no more questions as to which team will represent Belize in the next CONCACAF Champions League tournament; that matter was settled last week with Police United FC ending the 2015-2016 Premier League of Belize (PLB) Closing Season regular season with a combined total of 40 points over the Opening and Closing seasons, 1 point more than their closest contender, Belmopan Bandits FC, who finished with 39 points. Had the Bandits eclipsed Police United in the regular season point race, then the Champions League berth would still be up in the air, to be decided according to the outcome of the Closing Season championship. If Bandits had then won the Closing Season championship, they would have been the ones to go to Champions League. To make it to Champions League, Police United would have had to win back-to-back championships. However, Police United prevailed in the total-points race in the regular seasons; so, regardless of who becomes champion in the Closing Season, it is Police United FC who will represent in Champions League.

    Chief Thursday Race results, April 7
    The race, for Weekend Warrior (WW) category, went from Leslie’s Imports to Hattieville and back, for 28 miles. Twenty-four out of twenty-five riders finished the race. They were: 1st place Vallan Symns (Megabytes, 1:12:08); 2nd Gilroy Robinson (Santino’s, st); 3rd Ian Whittaker (Digicell-4G, 1:12:36); 4th Ian Abraham (Smart, st); 5th Ryan Willoughby (Smart, 1:14:54); 6th John Burns (Digicell-4G, st); 7th Ernest Olivera (FT Williams, st); 8th Gilberto Acosta (Spinnaz); 9th Warren Coye (Santino’s); 10th Ruthford Cunningham (Spinnaz); 11th Santino Castillo (Santino’s); 12th Andrew Brown (Megabytes); 13th Kaya Cattouse (C-Ray); 14th Nelson Zyden (Smart); 15th Eustace Ireland (Lampaz); 16th Kirk Sutherland (Digicell-4G); 17th Ingmar Perrera (Stationery House); 18th Charles Lewis (Lampaz); 19th Palas Joseph (Lampaz); 20th Mark Reid (Santino’s); 21st Francis Cassasola (Santino’s); 22nd Damian Gough (Scotiabank); 23rd Jack Sutherland (Digicell-4G); and 24th William Cacho (WKC Strikers).

    NEBL playoff teams set
    Bandits beat Ballaz in Belmopan: On Friday night, Cayo Western Ballaz took on their district rivals, Belmopan Bandits, at the UB gymnasium in Belmopan, with huge playoff implications hinging on this game. A win and Ballaz is in the playoffs, and a loss would send them home for the first time in three years, after reaching the finals the previous two years. At the half, Belmopan was up 35-24, but the lead was cut to three points, 50-47, going into the fourth quarter. In the fourth and decisive quarter, Belmopan opened the lead behind a few three-point shots, easily winning 73-57. With the loss, the Western Ballaz will not make the playoffs this season, while Belmopan Bandits is riding a 7-game winning streak going into the last weekend of the regular season. With only 1 week remaining in the regular season, the four playoff teams have already been decided. The other 4 teams have been eliminated from playoff contention. Below are the playoff scenarios for the seeding of teams going into the playoffs.

    Bill and BRICS
    Mr. Bill Lindo is an economist and businessman who co-hosts on Sunday mornings news-related discussions which are simulcast on KREM Radio and KREM Television. From time to time, he writes a column for Amandala, mostly on financial and political matters. Mr. Lindo was an officer of the UBAD Party in early 1973 when the organization split in two. At that point, he joined the ruling People’s United Party (PUP), where he has remained active for the last 46 years. In fact, he was recently added to the national executive of the now Opposition PUP, after being removed from same in late 2011. With respect to Belize’s economic challenges and the growing problems connected with the increasingly aggressive Guatemalan claim to Belize, Mr. Lindo has been suggesting that Belize’s leaders seek a closer relationship with the countries which are referred to as BRICS – Brazil, Russia, India, China, and South Africa. This newspaper hereby registers its disagreement with such a suggestion, for the reason that Belize is firmly within the geopolitical orbit of the superpower United States, which is where most of our diaspora population live and work. In addition, the two most powerful members of BRICS – Russia and China, are atheistic politico–economic systems, and the vast majority of Belizeans publicly profess Christian religious beliefs, even though the country often behaves as if it is a pagan realm.

    From the Publisher
    There are people who pride themselves on making intelligent, logical decisions. Remember now, you can only make an intelligent, logical decision at any given time based on the data which are available to you at that given time. Let us say that you are a slave, and you have to function with iron shackles on your feet. It may be an intelligent, logical decision for you to accept the conditions of your enslavement, such as the fact that your slavemaster is armed and powerful, and the fact that you are chained and bound. So, you choose to go on living from day to day in this wretched state of affairs. Some intelligent and logical people may actually consider you intelligent and logical. Historically, there have been slaves who lived their entire lives as slaves, and then died in slavery without ever drinking the exciting elixir of freedom. There have also been slaves who made desperate attempts to escape their slavery or to slay their masters, and it appears that the vast majority of escape attempts and violent rebellions did not succeed. Very, very few escape attempts and violent rebellions by slaves could be described as intelligent or logical, if we are to judge historically by the percentage of success in such initiatives. But, we descendants of slaves are inspired by such examples of resistance.

    A champion in the making
    Winning the Annual Cross Country Cycling Race is the dream of every cyclist who enters the race and rides the 144 miles from Belize City to San Ignacio and back. It takes discipline, endurance, stamina and above all, teamwork to carve out a win in the biggest sporting event in Belize and this year, two Guatemalan brothers took away Belize’s coveted Cross Country Garland, while Belizean cyclist Joel Borland placed third. Amandala sat down with the Borlands to find out what goes into making a great rider. Joel Borland, who is 21, told Amandala that he has been competing for about seven years now: three years as a junior and four years in the elite category. Admiral, John Borland, who is the head of the Coast Guard and Joel Borland’s father, is directly involved in his son’s training as the manager and coach of the Belmopan Digicell 4G LTE team. Borland said, “As the coach, I am responsible for developing the training plans, regime, curriculum and to oversee the supervision of the cyclists and members of the team in training – it becomes almost a full time job.”

    Girl, 15, who suffers from cerebral palsy, sexually assaulted by stepfather
    Police are looking for a man who sexually assaulted his 15-year-old stepdaughter, who suffers from cerebral palsy and is unable to speak or walk. On Friday, the girl and her mother went to police, and the mother told them that when she came home from work, she saw her daughter looking sad and uncomfortable, and began to communicate with her. Through signs and symbols, the girl reported that whenever her babysitter left the house, her stepfather would touch her breast, vagina and buttocks. The child was taken by police to a clinic, where she was examined by a doctor who certified that her hymen was torn. The stepfather is on the run. If he is tried in court and found guilty, he can expect a minimum jail sentence of 10 years.

    Breaking Belize NewsPJ

    Bank burglar pleads guilty
    In court news, A man police caught red handed burglarizing the Atlantic Bank Collet Agency ATM in 2015 pleaded guilty to burglary with intent to steal over $10,700 in items he ended up damaging during the burglary. 32 year old Malique Benito Martinez, a […]

    Daughter attacks her father with an axe
    A Sandhill woman pleaded guilty to wounding her own father with an axe. Lily Ozaeta admitted to chopping her 84 year old father, Nicholas Ozaeta in the head, making him unconscious and landing him in hospital. According to the police report, on Sunday, April […]

    Employee guilty of stealing batteries from employer
    Businessman Jitendra Chawla, also known as Jack Charles, has reported three employees to police for allegedly stealing a pack of Triple-A batteries from his store, valued at 208 dollars. Orange Walk resident Jose Moralez said he took full responsibility for the theft and pleaded […]

    Bus driver charged in accident
    Franco Audinett, a 37 year old bus driver from Hattieville, Belize District, has been arraigned for manslaughter by negligence, causing death by careless conduct, and driving a motor vehicle without due care and attention. On March 18, Audinett is accused of negligently driving a […]

    Ladyville police find gun and ammo
    The Ladyville Police Strike Team conducted searches in that village on Saturday afternoon which resulted in the discovery of a gun and ammunition. While searching an abandoned lot in the Japan area around 2:00 p.m., officers found a black plastic bag containing a Ruger […]

    Succotz teen missing
    Mother of a 16-year-old student of San Jose Succotz Village, Cayo District, 56-year-old Martina Cal, reported to police yesterday that her son had been missing since Sunday, April 10. She told officers that around 2:30 p.m. that day, her son Nelson Cal left home […]

    San Pedro taxi driver charged for drunk driving
    San Pedro Police arrested and charged a taxi driver on the island last Friday for driving while under the influence of alcohol. At around 9:30 that night, officers on mobile patrol witnessed a taxi van being driven by 40-year-old Emmanuel Chi, almost collide into […]

    Belize Garinagu mark arrival to Central America
    Garifuna Settlement Day in November is the joyous celebration of the ethnic group’s arrival to Belize. But it was borne out of a bitter day in April, 1797, when the original Black Caribs were loaded on the ship HMS Experiment from Baliceaux, near their […]

    Robert’s Grove Beach Resort – A harmonious blend of man-made comforts and nature
    Robert’s Grove Beach Resort is the perfect place to sink your toes in the golden sand that is caressed by the gentle waves of the turquoise Caribbean Sea. Enjoy anywhere from standard to luxurious accommodations, take tours of Belize’s rich marine life or lush rain-forest […]

    Issue #31 of The BELIZE AG REPORT is online here!.

    To The Editor
    Dear Editor, My understanding of the recent evolution or revolution in agriculture in terms of crop selection and production methods is that since the beginning of the 20th century they have become almost entirely dependent on the use of non-sustainable methods and materials while nutritional quality has decreased. Generally, significant changes began occurring with the introduction of mechanized farm machinery and the wide spread use of synthetic fertilizers, especially nitrogen, during the first green revolution. The next readily recognizable phase included the introduction of a vast array of synthetic compounds designed to control animal, plant and microbial pests or conversely to alter the physiology of crops to suit marketing and consumer demands. Moving ahead to the present decade, the most significant change in agriculture is the widespread use of genetically engineered or modified organisms.

    MNRA Horticulture Center Vegetable Research and Demonstration
    The Horticulture Demonstration and Training Center was established by the Republic of China – Taiwan TechnicalMission in the late 90’s and then transferred to the Ministry of Agriculture in 2012. The horticulture program is now a part of the Crop Research and Development Unit at the Research, Development and Innovation Center in Central Farm, Cayo District. The program is primarily involved in the evaluation, demonstration and training of open field vegetable and exotic fruit tree production.The Ministry of Agriculture annual work plan is developed in accordance with the National Agriculture and Food Policy of Belize – 2015 to 2030 which has as the main objective “to provide an environment that is conducive to increasing production and productivity, promoting investment, and encouraging private sector involvement in agribusiness enterprises in a manner that ensures competitiveness, quality production, trade and sustainability”.

    Green Bananas – A Neglected Food
    Next time you visit the market put some green bananas in your basket. This amazing but neglected food is the cheapest and tastiest starch source around. Green bananas used to be commonly eaten in Belize: boiled, fried or part of stews. Green bananas contain as many minerals, especially potassium and magnesium, vitamins and fibre as the ripe fruit. The current price is around 3lbs (8-10 fingers) for $1.00, cheaper than plantains and potatoes and having more flavor. Much of this fruit is thrown away as rejects yet is available for only the cost of transportation. Our culinary artists and home cooks should take a second look at this food apart from the “boil-up” where it is most commonly seen.

    High Density Planting In Orange Groves For Belize
    Plagued with the dreaded Huanglongbing (HLB) formerly known as Citrus Greening, we must venture into unconventional production methods to increase yields. High density planting has been the norm in many citrus producing countries including Brazil and the Unites States (Florida and Texas). High density planting is the production of citrus with more trees per acre than the conventional number. In Belize, the conventional planting spacing is 15 feet in rows and 25 feet between rows which totals 116 trees per acre. Before venturing into high density planting, several important factors must be considered: the types of rootstocks and scions to be used, soil type, yield performance, nutritional demand of the rootstocks and spacing.

    Trapping the Mischievous Palm Weevil to Prevent Red Ring Disease in Your Coconut Grove
    In the last issue of the Belize Ag Report (issue # 29 pg 37) Forrest Tackitt wrote about Red Ring Disease in coconuts. The vector for this disease which affects coconut and African oil palms, with up to 80% mortality, is the palm weevil (Rynchophoruspalmarum). This large red snout beetle is native all the way from Mexico through South America and resides in some parts of the Caribbean as well. The nematode (Bursaphelenchus cocophilus) which is the direct cause of Red Ring Disease, is carried in the gut of this palm weevil. San Miguel learned a successful technique to trap this beetle vector from the staff of Mexico’s Instituto Nacional de Investigaciones Forestales, Agricolas y Pecuarias (INIFAP) in Chetumal, Quintana Roo, Mexico. INIFAP is the research arm of Mexico’s Ministry of Agriculture (SAGARPA).

    Beekeeping in Belize Cayo Quality Honey Producers Cooperative
    The first beekeepers in Belize were the ancient Maya. They kept stingless bees, Melipona beecheii, in hives made from hollowed out logs. The entrance hole was made midway between the two ends and the ends were sealed with clay. Honey was harvested one to three times a year: in March, April and in a good year, in December as well. Large apiaries existed in Corozal, Orange Walk and Cayo and honey was one of the chief exports of the Maya state of Chactumal in northern Belize. Beekeeping with stingless bees continued until the mid 20th century but today only a few hives remain and the population of wild stingless bees is threatened by development. Beekeeping with Apismelifera began in the Corozal District in 1957 when Tony Espat and Hernan Urbina brought beekeepers from the Yucatan. Several colonies were established at Central Farm as well, but these soon died due to a lack of knowledge in beekeeping. By December 1958 there were 958 colonies in Corozal and Orange Walk Districts and fifteen drums of honey were exported that year.

    Beyond The Backyard – A Leaf From My Recipe Book
    Eating from the wild can create an unexpected culinary masterpiece or become a recipe for disaster. It is important to have sufficient information. Knowing something to be edible is not enough to prevent you from harm. Knowledge of content and preparation is essential. My daughter-in-law decorated our dinner plates with the wonderful heart shaped leaves of the taro plant commonly called elephant ears placed under some delicious stewed chicken. Whilst scooping up the juices my son popped the leaf in his mouth chewed it up and moments later was gasping for water and on the verge of a trip to the emergency room even though that would have meant thirty miles of rough roads at night. These plants have saponins that instantly inflame the mouth and throat causing chronic itching. He survived the experience and a lesson was learned.

    Watershed Management: A Tool for Sustainable Development
    As the population of Belize continues to grow the demand for use of the natural resources will continue to rise. Human beings are completely dependent on the environment for survival. The land produces the food we eat, the forests provide the water we drink and the shelter we need. It is an unending struggle to balance economic development with the protection of the environment, also known as sustainable development. In 1987 the World Commission on Environment and Development defined sustainable development as “Development that meets the needs of the present without compromising the ability of future generations to meet their own needs.” It is not an end but rather a process for meeting human development goals while maintaining the ability of the earth’s natural systems to provide in perpetuity, the natural resources and ecosystem services upon which the economy and society depend.

    Soils of Belize – The Southern Cayo and Stann Creek Districts
    My last article left us on the limestone foothills of the Cayo District with its lower alluvial areas created by the Belize River. The southern flank of the George Price Highway is a karst (limestone based) landscape with many limestone hills starting to give way to granitic hills and mountains further south. Further east, to the coast, we begin to see deposits of granitic sand and the first occurrence of a true coastline with sandy beaches that extend down to the Placencia Peninsula. My last article left us on the limestone foothills of the Cayo District with its lower alluvial areas created by the Belize River. The southern flank of the George Price Highway is a karst (limestone based) landscape with many limestone hills starting to give way to granitic hills and mountains further south. Further east, to the coast, we begin to see deposits of granitic sand and the first occurrence of a true coastline with sandy beaches that extend down to the Placencia Peninsula.

    BEL-CAR Updates – Changing Times Invite Changes to the Belize Commodity Market
    After a less than normal corn harvest caused by the summer drought (see national loss estimates in Ag Briefs, pg, Bel-Car reports that corn inventories are still more than adequate for domestic needs, although leaving little export surplus. Several farmers then planned to plant during the fall, normally a bean-planting time. However, the overabundant fall rains prevented many from following through on that plan. Due to the long-lasting rains most had to revert to the normal beans winter cycle, as they have a shorter growing period than corn. Quite a bit of RK beans and BE (black eye) peas are in the fields now. Last year was a record bean crop, with high acreages and high yields. Belize exported twice the amount of beans in 2015 than in 2014. About 50 containers (50k lbs per) remain. There is a challenge to find new markets, as price decreases faster than quality.

    Waste Management in Belize
    Our Mayan Mountains are a beautiful sight to behold, but if we are not careful we will have other mountains made out of waste material. Are you aware of the “mountains” of plastic floating in the Gulf of Mexico? Last estimates compare it to the size of Texas (30 times the size of Belize), and there is one in the Pacific that is twice that size. I admit that I am terrible at recycling; I burn my garbage, and, yes, that sometimes includes plastic, but it is time for a change. If all of us in Belize concentrate on recycling only the easiest items, paper, plastic, glass and aluminium, we would help keep our country clean and have a tremendous effect on our planet at the same time. I was clueless about recycling facilities in Belize until my last trip to Xunantunich; I almost ran off the road looking at that big Solid Waste sign along George Price Highway. Now, after my first transfer station experience, and a meeting with Mr. Emmerson Garcia at the Waste Management Office, I am much better informed and wish to share this information, and encourage you into some much needed recycling and possibly a good house cleaning.

    Magnesium, an Essential Nutrient for Better Soil Fertility
    There are some important foundational principles for understanding and utilizing magnesium to achieve excellent soil fertility. It is important to correctly use this nutrient in terms of soil fertility for the most positive effect on crops and the greatest benefit to the soil where those plants will be grown. The overall concept hearkens back to the definition in agronomy textbooks concerning what makes up an ideal soil. That ideal soil is described as 25% air, 25% water, 45% mineral and 5% organic matter. Most soils fall short of the ideal in some way. Clay soils are generally too tight, and due to a lack of calcium (which can be true even on high pH soils), they contain inadequate pore space resulting in too much water and not enough air for the ideal soil environment. Such soils tend to stay wet longer and become harder to work as they dry out. Sandy soils tend to have the opposite problem – too much air and not enough water – but they will still pack down and become hard when worked too wet, especially so when magnesium levels are excessive.

    BLPA News
    Ever wonder how much longer the Cattle Sweep has to go before Belize can be declared free of tuberculosis? Here’s your answer: the cattle industry still has 2 long years to go before being declared free of tuberculosis. If you raise cattle you have seen teams visit your farm and get blood samples to see if your cattle are free from disease, especially tuberculosis and brucellosis, 2 of the most common diseases in cattle (that can even affect humans once contracted). Why is it important to test? Without testing of animals Belize cannot declare the country free of disease which means we cannot export to any other country. What happens if you don’t test? It means that you put your cattle and the rest of the country’s animals at risk and you can also be fined by relevant authorities for not complying.

    Sam Vigue Discusses Low Input Farming with Pro-Organic Belize
    Sam Vigue is an American agronomist who works as a seed research specialist in Austin, Texas. He visited Belize in 2015 and returned in 2016. During the latter visit, he attended Pro-Organic Belize’s January meeting to discuss seeds and low input farming principles. Sam defines low input farming as using better farming systems, wherein a farmer is less reliant on external inputs for planting, growing or harvesting crops. He claims that when seeking self-sufficiency in farming, it all starts with seeds and soil. Healthy soil works like preventative medicine. Having all the nutrients is key. Foliar fertilizer, in his view, will not work as well as maintaining the soil as a storehouse of nutrients for the plant. One of the best ways to get those into the soil, is using compost. Then the nutrients need to be available to the roots so they reach the plant from the soil.

    Saving Heritage Seeds in Belize – David Johansen’s Seed Garden and Vault
    Since age twelve David Johansen has had an avid interest in seeds and farming; he has lived and farmed in Colorado, Utah, Missouri, and California. Having traveled widely in Belize and Central America to procure hardy, tolerant seeds adapted to the challenging growing conditions in Belize, David developed his 35 acre farm and seed bank over the past eight years in the Spanish Lookout area with great success. He has many crops growing abundantly to full maturity in order for him to harvest seeds to sell locally and fulfill orders for Belizean grown seeds from US seed companies. In order to preserve the seeds in cool temperature, low humidity conditions, David designed and constructed a climate-controlled underground depository cement vault which can store hundreds of jars of seeds. His seeds have been meticulously catalogued. Keeping seeds beneath the earth helps to keep the seeds viable for sprouting. David is working on a dehumidification system to ensure the proper dryness.

    Dairy Products At Home – Hard Cheeses
    In the final installment of our dairy workshop, we look at hard cheese, which is made using rennet as a coagulant. The title of this article is “Hard Cheeses” because all the hard cheeses in your urban deli are made in basically the same way, with only slight variations of temperature, time lapses, or aging times. Unique varieties have developed in various parts of the world due to the unique bacteria and climatic conditions in each place. You can try to reproduce cheese by ordering freeze dried bacteria from a catalog, or you can develop your own cheese unique to your locale – or rather cheeses, for each one will have its own unique “personality”. The first rule of cheese making should be this: There is no such thing as a flop; there are only new types of cheese. If you followed my mozzarella procedure in the last issue, you have a good start at making rennet cheese. Start with sweet milk (slightly sour also works), adding 14 tsp of liquid rennet to 4 gallons of milk, or 6 drops per gallon. Use clean, stainless steel containers and utensils to lessen the chance of strange bacteria entering it.

    Surviving Climate Change
    Climate change is the biggest challenge to agriculture in the twenty-first century. The past year 2015 was the hottest year in recorded modern history. Whether you agree that this elevation in temperature is man-assisted or a natural phenomenon, it is a fact to be understood and dealt with for long term agricultural production. For small farmers to survive climate change, methods of farming must be adjusted to reduce crop loss and ensure profitability at harvest. Small farmers have an advantage in adapting to the changing weather patterns. This is good news as 84% of the world’s food production comes from small farmers cultivating less than 5 acres. Modern day climate change challenging the small farmer is characterized by massive flooding (too much water), extensive droughts (no water), accompanied by widespread fires (in many places though not Belize at this time) resulting in unpredictable and incomprehensible changing weather patterns.

    Life Everlasting Plant
    The succulent herb Kalanchoe pinnatum, sometimes called Bryophyllum pinnatum, has many common names: life everlasting, miracle leaf, cathedral bells, wonder plant, never die, leaf of life, sprouting leaf, resurrection plant, mother of millions, and many other names. It is a member of the Crassulaceae plant family. Native to Madagascar, it grows prolifically in Belize and other tropical regions of the world. The plant grows easily and although it is valued as an ornamental garden plant, it is considered an invasive species in some areas. Life everlasting is believed to be a panacea for many ailments. It is rich in over two dozen healing chemical compounds, including, alkaloids, triterpenes, glycosides, flavonoids, steroids, and lipids. Life everlasting plants are perennial and grow to be about three to five feet in height with fleshy green leaves from two to four inches long which may be tinged with pinkish to purple on the scalloped outer leaves. Plants produce clusters of showy hollow tubular flowers, about one inch long on tall panicles with a pale pinkish to purple tinge at the base of each blossom.

    Pro-Organic Belize Seeks Pesticide Residue Tests for Local Produce, Visits BAHA’s Chemical Analysis Laboratory
    On 25 January 2016, a group from Cayo’s Pro-Organic Belize visited Belize Agricultural Health Authority (BAHA) Central Investigation Laboratory (CIL) in Belize City. We met with Laboratory Administrator/Deputy Director of Food Safety Dr. Natalie Gibson and her head chemist for the Chemical Analysis Laboratory (CAL) to tour the recently renovated laboratory facility and discuss the pesticide testing capabilities of their laboratory for both public and private needs. The CAL is located in the BAHA complex located on St. Joseph Street in Belize City, with the sample storage and preparation rooms separated from the sample analysis rooms. Sample processing will be greatly improved by the acquisition of two new processing machines. The sample analysis rooms contain several gas chromatographs, heavy metal analysis equipment, supplies and computers. This equipment is capable of detecting quantitative amounts (in parts per million or ppm) of specific molecules used to identify specific pesticides.

    Planting & Harvesting Beans – The Mayan Way
    Beans have always been a staple for the Mayas. They have a large variety of beans: Boloc’ che, Tzama (red & black) variety, Xchalaatbu-ul, Xme-hen bu-ul, and Xpascuabu-ul. They eat beans almost daily with rice and tortillas. Their diet is also complemented with cowpeas which are planted during the months of June and July to be eaten starting in late October for the observance of All Saints Day or Finados. Local lima beans are also cultivated for the preparation of the special Mayan dish called Xtoc sel. Many of the Mayan beans are large with a thicker skin and have much more “bean” pulp than the typical black or red beans grown in Belize. (See issue 15, page 18 of the Belize Ag Report for a more complete description of Mayan beans.) If you want to grow and harvest beans the way the Mayas did and many still do, here’s what you should know:

    Mopan Technical and Vocational High School Agriculture Program
    Mopan Technical and Vocational High School in Benque Viejo del Carmen, Cayo District, the agriculture science program offers students sound practical hands-on courses designed to prepare students for a career in agriculture. In addition to animal husbandry skills, the program focuses on teaching students how to manage soil and organic matter, sow seeds, tend plants and harvest in the fields and in green houses. The program also includes courses in the sciences and finances, complementing the field work, to round out skills needed to successfully manage a farm or teach agriculture. In order to graduate, students must pass the Caribbean Examinations Council (CEC) Agriculture Science exam. Mr. Francisco Tun, principal of the high school has a commitment to prepare students for careers in agriculture which will help support food security in Belize. The agriculture program is managed by Mr. Kendall Mendez, who has been instrumental in the development and success of the vocational agriculture department of the school for over thirty years.

    Ask Rubber Boots
    After a long hibernation, Rubber Boots returns with a few suggestions for bio-friendly plagacides (new word for pest controls). Do pesky drunken baymen (Trigona, the largest genus of sting-less bees) gather around your hummingbird feeder? Try a few dabs of coconut oil on the feeder and see the drunken baymen disperse. Fruit flies (drysophila) in your kitchen? Put a few small dishes with a small amount of real vanilla extract out; that is what commercial produce departments of grocery stores do (or used to do in the days of yore) to encourage them to simply go away. Bugs eating your beans? Sometimes this is a sign of low magnesium. Try spraying with epsom salts, 1 Tbs per gallon (5 lbs per acre). Even if your soil has good Mg Levels, it may be ‘tied up’ and unavailable to the plants (Thank you, Neal Kinsey).

    Ag Briefs
    In a December 2015 session of the National Assembly of Venezuela, what has been called “one of the most progressive seed laws in the world” was passed, and soon after signed into law by outgoing President Nicolas Maduro. This very comprehensive piece of legislation is not only anti-GMO, but anti-patenting of seeds too. The law also regulates the production of hybrid seed, rejects the production, distribution and importation of GMO seed, and bans transgenic (GMO/GE) seed research in the country. At least one grower in Belize has been producing Sea Island Cotton in Northern Belize for several years, for buyers in Japan. In recognition that Belize has the capacity to produce very high quality cotton for export, Japan made a grant of $102,029.00USD in mid-February to the cotton industry in Belize.

    Agriculture Prices At A Glance

    Blogs

    Breaking News of the escaped Octopus Inky this morning has alarmed Belizeans immediately thinking that it’s in search of Belize’s Barrier Reef!
    In the wee hours of our Belizean morning, we received reports of Inky, an octopus, and resident of the National Aquarium in the coastal city of Napier, New Zealand who made a cunning escape from his tank to the sea, possibly in search of Belize’s barrier reef. The authorities say the tank-break was carefully planned by Inky and stealthily executed; “They are always exploring and they are great escape artists,” Mr Rob Yarrell, Aquarium Manager

    NOT SCUBA! NOT SNORKELING!! DISCOVER THE BELIZE UNDERWATER SEA WORLD WITH SNUBA!
    After being briefed, it’s time to get geared up. Fins – check; masks – check; weight belts – check; camera – check; sense of adventure – check. Well, looks like we’re all set. In SNUBA, you breathe through a regulator which is fed compressed air through extended hoses attached to a flotation devise some 20 feet away. This gives you much lee-way to get down under – where you can become one with the underwater world. Nurse sharks and stingrays are a mainstay at Mexico Rocks, along with the rainbow of sparkling colors of the various miniature decorated fishes that make the Coral Head formations their home – this adventure is sure to excite just about anyone. The highlight of this trip, however had to have been “DUDE” the name I lovingly gave to our very friendly sea turtle, that made absolutely no attempt to evade us. In fact, this little guy seriously came to give us Hi5’s!! AND he lingered around. Sucks that by this time, my camera battery had gone low and it remained an experience for me to only be able to share but not show (Be sure to carry extra batteries for your underwater camera).

    Pool Project: Week 4
    Well, we are at the halfway point of our estimated finish time and things were hopping last week. The crew started off the week by nailing together the wood frames for the columns. When the frames were finished, each of the columns were filled with cement. Some of the crew worked on building the side walls for the hallway, which will be accessed from the back wall of our spare bedroom. More cement work got underway when the foreman cast and poured a slab, which runs from our back door in the kitchen to the edge of the septic tank. And the reason for the slab?

    Crockpot Carnitas - Slow Cooker Pulled Pork
    Remove excess fat from the pork. No need to remove all of the the fat - just the really big pieces. Cut the pork into 3 or 4 pieces and sprinkle all over with salt and pepper. Place all the ingredients in the crockpot and cook on low for about 6 hours, or until pork is very tender and can be pulled apart easily with a fork. Line a rimmed baking sheet with foil. Preheat the broiler.

    5 Best Places for a Family Friendly Adventure Vacation to Belize
    Need an excuse to justify taking your kids on vacation? How about the study undertaken by the U.S. government a few years back that proves taking children of any age on interesting vacations not only makes them more tolerant but smarter. The study proved a link between kids as young as six (first grade) and academic achievement, so if you want your kids to be class stars, put a Belize trip atop your must-do list. 1. Basecamp Adventure: how does a trip that includes paddling, snorkeling, fishing, swimming, and exploring sound to you? This popular multi-generational family package even supplies hammock time for weary parents. On this trip, Island Expeditions takes your party to Glover’s Reef, River of Caves and Lighthouse Reef. 2. Jungle Adventure. Allow Island Expeditions to escort you and your wide-eyed offspring to the Bocawina Forest Resort in the Bocawina National Park. This eco-resort offers opportunities for children of all ages to zip line, repel down waterfalls, hike forest trails, ride horses through jungle, go cave tubing and–when kids finally run out of steam—birdwatching. Jungle and Beach Adventure. Let’s say that while you don’t mind turning into Indiana Jones for part of your holiday, you want to find out how it feels to plant yourself on a beach with a book in hand. Does this Island Expedition choice mean everyone is satisfied? 4. Ultimate Adventure for Teens. In addition to staying physically active and working off teen angst, if you book this intriguing trip, you’ll sharpen the minds and bodies of your curious explorers. This adventure is only for high schoolers and above because it’s a rugged camping experience into the depths of Belize’s most remote corners. 5. Lodge-to-Lodge Adventure. This experience satisfies the widest age range of travelers because the perpetually on-the-go, island to island expedition includes watersports like sea kayaking and SUP boarding, but there’s an element of luxury and relaxation that works for adults of all ages.

    International Sourcesizz

    Agricultural, extension education major does research in Belize
    Olivia Murphy-Sweet was alone when she ventured into San Jose Succotz, a rural village in the Central American country of Belize. To supplement her coursework as an agricultural and extension education major and international agriculture minor, the senior made the five-week trip last summer to conduct research under the guidance of one of her professors. "By talking to the locals and observing existing programs and customs, I researched whether a long-term agricultural education program was feasible," she explained. The results of her research are still to be determined, but if they show that Belizean natives are interested in agricultural education, eventually a program such as 4-H would be introduced to the rural Belizean society. It would teach youth about farming practices and promote the field of agriculture.

    Students Finish What UT Started During Belize Trip
    From barrier reefs to dense tropical rainforests, the country of Belize offers much to attract the average American. So while it wasn’t surprising to see a group of students and faculty from UT there during spring break or the second year in a row, their trip was anything but a vacation. “Our group had a physically demanding week, but one that was rewarding both through the results of their efforts and through the culture they experienced,” said College of Engineering International Coordinator Judith Mallory. Mallory led fifteen students on the College of Engineering’s Alternative Spring Break to the town of San Ignacio, Belize. The trip marked the first joint project between the College of Engineering and the Chancellor’s Honors Program.

    Searchers scour Caribbean south to Belize for fishermen missing 11 days
    After 11 days since the disappearance of five fishermen from Isla Mujeres, family and authorities still have no evidence leading to the whereabouts of the crew of the vessel “Anastacia”. A body found in Mahahual within a lobster trap was not identified as one of the missing. The notice has been public for four days to Mahahual fishermen to assist in the search for their counterparts from Isla Mujeres. Although the five anglers disappeared from the Costa Maya coast between Isla Mujeres and Cozumel March 30, so far searchers have turned up no sign of the missing despite efforts that have extended as far as waters off Cuba and Florida. Jaime Medina Flores, president of the Caribbean Lobstermens Cooperative and the Advisory Board of Banco “Chinchorro”, said the search will extend almost to the border with Belize. He added that the fact of not having found even a lifejacket of the missing is a good sign.

    Jordanian ambassador to Belize presents credentials
    The first non-resident accredited Jordanian ambassador to Belize, Ibrahim Obeidat, presented his credentials to the Governor-General of Belize. The ambassador conveyed the regards of His Majesty King Abdullah II to the Governor-General and his interest to improve bilateral relations in various domains. The Governor-General expressed appreciation of the role of His Majesty King Abdullah II to support global peace and security. He also stressed his support for Jordan, mainly with regard to hosting Syrian refugees as well as the two-state solution.

    Belize, Mexico discuss trans-border oil reserves
    Mexico and Belize have agreed a moratorium on the development of their trans-border hydrocarbons reserves and plan to hold talks on a bilateral agreement on exploration and drilling. Mexico's hydrocarbons undersecretary at the energy ministry, Lourdes Melgar (pictured, right), and Belizean vice minister for economic development, oil, trade and investment, Yvonne Hyde, met Monday to sign the moratorium on exploration and drilling within 5km of the border. The meeting was a follow-up to a memorandum of understanding signed by both countries last August. Both officials also agreed on a work calendar to establish negotiations toward a bilateral agreement on trans-border hydrocarbons reserves.

    Wings of Hope gives critical patients a lift
    A local organization is making healthcare accessible to people in the poorest parts of the world. For more than 50 years, Wings of Hope has been medical transport for critical patients. Wings of Hope President Don Hamblen and another volunteer recently traveled to Belize where the flights provide patients a smooth journey. "From the southern part of Belize to where the hospital is in Belize City it could be a five hour very uncomfortable bumpy car ride as opposed to maybe an hour in an airplane," said Hamblen. The Belizean Emergency Response team makes an average of 250 emergency medical flights each year. A recent runway accident put its plane out of service, so Wings of Hope stepped in to help their counterparts. "There have been hundreds of lives that have been saved because these are critically ill patients that get to a higher level of care than they would have otherwise," he said. Patients never see a bill for the travel accommodations. The volunteer-driven organization relies on donations and performs its own maintenance and renovation of airplanes.

    Exclusive Criminal Minds: Beyond Borders Sneak Peek: Is There More to This Abduction of Newlyweds?
    A honeymoon in Belize might literally be to die for on Criminal Minds: Beyond Borders. On Wednesday's episode (10/9c, CBS), the team heads to the Central American paradise when a couple of newlyweds, Susie (Autumn Reeser) and John (Gil McKinney), go MIA two days after renting a jeep. It could be an abduction at the hands of a drug cartel, but something the couple did upon arriving to Belize raises Mae's (Annie Funke) suspicions.

    World’s most amazing loos with views
    TOILETS can be the worst part of travelling. There are signs in foreign languages to confuse you, unfamiliar hygiene practices to puzzle over, and awkward situations like plane turbulence and moving trains to navigate. But at some perfectly placed potties, answering the call of nature can actually become a highlight of your trip. Lonely Planet’s latest book, Toilets: A Spotter’s Guide, celebrates the world’s most unique places to take a pit stop. Toilet island, near Placencia, Belize: Eat your heart out Robinson Crusoe. This paradisiacal punctuation mark in the Caribbean Sea off Placencia, Belize, boasts its own flushing throne, from where the king or queen of the castaways can survey their desert-island domain. It’s a long way to the shops when you run out of paper, though… Picture: Tomas Mahring

    The Mayans, the Mass and Me
    Belize is one of my favorite vacation locations. I like the snorkeling and snoozing, but I also like the ancient religious ruins. (My kids like to joke that I’m getting to be an ancient religious ruin.) On the last trip to Belize we went across the border into Guatemala and visited the Mayan ruins at Tikal. We climbed to the top of the main pyramid, and sitting up there on a beautiful morning, the jungle birds crying and the jungle trees and neatly trimmed lawned—I imagined the priests offering their sacrifices of grain and human lives to their sky gods. It was a different scene then. The forests all cut down, the barbaric rites continued in fear and desperation as famine and starvation loomed. The critics of Catholicism—both Protestant and atheist—might say, “Geesh, it’s not really any different than what you do is it Father?”

    Commentary: The eerie truth about air pollution
    Sit for a second and take a deep breath. Inhale and exhale gently. Wasn't the refreshing? Do you know what's not refreshing? The air you just inhaled. The quality of the Earth's air is in a constant state of depreciation stemming from the burning of waste products, factory emissions and motor vehicle exhaust, to name a few activities. While the effects of air pollution on human health may appear black and white, the causes of these effects are in fact more complicated and there are many grey areas that may not be visible to the human eyes. To further understand the far reaching effects of air pollution, the health of coral reefs in the Caribbean is in danger. A 2013 European Commission report investigated the effects of anthropogenic aerosol emissions on coral reef ecosystems in the Caribbean. This report observed that periods of slow coral growth in Panama, Belize and other parts of the Caribbean were due to aerosols in the air from pollution.

    Videos

  • Belize Swim with Sharks, 4min. "If it can't kill you, it ain't a sport. That's why we don't play golf in Belize." -Elito.

  • Belize Snorkeling, 4min.

  • Morning Matters at Banyan Bay, 60min.

  • Morning Matters with Althea Moses, 80min.

  • Caye Caulker: LB Signature Presents: Linda Blease, 6.5min. Take a look . An insight of what my life in a week usually feels like ...Good vibes/ work and more work . Big up everyone who made this possible .

  • Belize16, 2.5min. Footage from a missions trip to Dangriga, Belize where we took some High School students that I work with to go work with a local high school, running classes, interacting with students & the community, and cleaning up parts of campus.

  • A Trip To Belize // Go Slow, 2min.

  • Pat and Devin Visit Hideaway Caye: Belize, 3.5min.

  • Belize Spring Break 2016, 3min. Indian Springs School spring break trip to Long Caye, Belize.

  • Sarteneja, Belize, 2min. Day 3 of the 2016 Belize expedition with Luis Rangel and Homayoon Ershadi. This video has footage of us before and after having our kayak sunk, being rescued, and the good times that followed.

    April 12, 2016


    FOR TODAY'S BELIZE WEATHER, CLICK HERE

    Click for our Daily Tropical Weather Report.

    Specials and Events

    Last night's TV news on Channel 7, Channel 5, LOVETV, PGTV, West Vision (Cayo) and CTV 3. Also with the most recent Open Your Eyes, Rise and Shine Morning Show, and the Dickie Bradley Specials


    The San Pedro Sun

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

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

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

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

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

    Ambergris Today

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

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

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

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

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

    Misc Belizean Sourcesmzz

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

    Channel 7

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

    Channel 5

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

    CTV3

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

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

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

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

    LOVE FM

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

    PlusTV

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

    Breaking Belize NewsPJ

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

    Blogs

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

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

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

    International Sourcesizz

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

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

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

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

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

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

    Videos

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

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

  • Belize & Guatemala 2016, 11min.

  • Zip Lining in Belize, 2min.

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

  • Study Abroad Belize 2016, 3min.

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

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

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

  • Belize Jungle Zip Line Video, 5min.

    April 11, 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

    Wolfe’s Woofer: A Shot of Rum
    “You had a phone call while you were out,” Sherry said. “Who was it?” “It was Ms. Lourdes, Don Julio’s wife.” “I hope he didn’t pass away,” I said. “He’s been sick a long time now and he’s almost ninety years old.” “Ms. Lourdes says he is nearly done for,” Sherry said. “She wants you to come see him one more time.” “Don Julio, how are you?” I asked, when Ms. Lourdes took me into the bedroom. “Not bad,” he said, “considering that I’m eighty-nine years old and every part of my body is trying to quit on me.” “Is there anything I can do for you?” I asked, when she left the room.

    Tropic Air gives back to the King’s Children’s Home
    Tropic Air, The Airline of Belize, has announced the March results of its ongoing #TropicGivesBack fundraising campaign. For every ticket bought at the month’s selected station, $1 is donated to an organization chosen by our staff from that community. In February, $400 was donated to Arms of Love in Caye Caulker. March was the chosen month for Belmopan, with San Ignacio this month, and Punta Gorda chosen for May. As part of the airline’s largest charitable fundraiser of the year, Tropic Air business partners, staff and customers joined efforts and raised $400 for The King’s Children Home in Belmopan. Rondell Usher, Station Manager, and his Staff presented a check to the organization on Monday, April 4th.

    Doctor Love: Tired and Embarrassed
    Dear Doctor Love, I have been married for five years now and it seems like all I ever do is work. Right after we got married my husband hurt his back at work and had to take time off. I had a job so I took care of the bills. My husband’s back got better but he never went back to work. He said it was because his back gets sore from any kind of lifting. Two years ago we bought a boat because he likes to fish and he thought he could make some money fishing. To buy the boat we needed more money so I took a second job and worked even harder. He takes the boat out all of the time fishing with his friends but he has never made any money with it. Meantime he always needs money for gas and a few beers. Now the boat needs engine work which means more money. When I came home three days ago he told me about someone who needs a part time bookkeeper. I had a big blowup and told him that I am already working two jobs and it is time for him to work. I said that I notice his back never hurts from pulling the boat out of the water and working on it. I’m not even sure I love him anymore. Now, we have not talked for three days. Am I right or wrong about this? What should I do? /s/ Tired

    Misc Belizean Sourcesmzz

    Sherlie Medical Fund
    Hi Everyone, I am asking that if you are medically able to take a day this week and proclaim a fast for my sister Sherlie condition. We are encountering some challenges in our effort to get Sherlie here in the US. The process to bring her to the US, is very long and somewhat complicated. As we are waiting on the process her situation is worsening, so please pray that God would open up a door for her to come to the US as quickly as possible and get the immediate care that she so needed. Or else, pray that God would keep her health from deteriorating as we wait on the process to take its course. I know all this is in God's hand but he has given us the authority to seek and ask of him; and if we believe then we shall receive. So please pray that the mountains and hills before us would crumble and fall and that every weapon that come against us would not prosper. The word of God say's in Mark 9:28-29 " This kind can come forth by nothing , but prayer and fasting. So, proclaim a fast with me this week, at your own convenience and let's watch God work in great and mighty ways!!

    Caribbean Fisheries Forum meets to discuss emerging challenges
    Fisheries experts from across the Caribbean region travelled to Guyana last week for the 14th meeting of the Caribbean Fisheries Forum -- the primary technical deliberative body of the Caribbean Regional Fisheries Mechanism (CRFM). The Forum met in Georgetown on Thursday and Friday to undertake its annual stocktaking and planning for the fisheries and aquaculture sector. The event brought together more than 50 participants, including directors of fisheries, chief fisheries officers, and other development partners, such as NGOs and international organizations like the UN Food and Agriculture Organization, which work with the CRFM in promoting the development, management and conservation of the Caribbean’s fisheries resources. CRFM executive director, Milton Haughton, highlighted the most pressing issues on the agenda: “We’re discussing a lot of emerging issues in the region. We are looking at how to improve conservation and management of key species, apply and use the value chain approach in order to increase benefits, such as increased income and export potential.

    BEL Stabilizes National Grid following System Collapses
    Belize Electricity Limited (BEL) is utilizing a combination of backup generation sources to enable stable power supply to the country, following three system collapses tonight. Between 8:18 p.m. and 9:49 p.m. three separate power interruptions were experienced countrywide as a result of a faulty protection device in Xulha, Mexico. The device has since been repaired. As a contingency, BEL is utilizing backup generating plants to allow for a gradual stabilization of its supply during the night. BEL apologizes to customers for the power interruptions experienced tonight and will continuously strive to further improve the Company’s system reliability and emergency response.

    Cayo Health & Fitness Expo
    The Cayo Health and Fitness Expo is Saturday, April 16 starting at 9:00am, at the Cayo Welcome Center. They'll have live demonstrations of yoga, Tai Chi, Zumba, along with plenty of health food vendors. "Come out for a day of Fun and Fitness! Live yoga, tai-chi, Zumba and other demonstrations for all to join in! We will have a silent auction for fabulous packages from local resorts and tour guides. We will have raffles for gift baskets and packages from our health and fitness professionals...and so much more!"

    Capture the Cover Contest
    You can have your picture be on the cover of the new Destination Belize magazine. McNab Publishing is doing this year's edition, and is having a contest to find a cover picture. Best of luck!

    The Reporter

    CEOs making a “Big Deal” about cancer
    The Caucus of Chief Executive Officers of the Government of Belize is hosting the first ever “The Big Deal” CEO Caucus Challenge 2016: Cancer Awareness Ride, to raise funds and awareness. The ride will take place on Saturday May 7, starting at Mile 25 on the George Price Highway and will conclude at the Show Grounds in the City of Belmopan. The caucus pledges to raise $50,000 over the next month to support national efforts to combat cancer. “The Big Deal” CEO Caucus Challenge 2016: Cancer Awareness Ride is supported by the Government of Belize, the Special Envoy for Women and Children, the Belize Cancer Society, and the Belize Cancer Center. Registration began this week with a fee of $25 per participant. Each registrant will receive a “The Big Deal” CEO Caucus Challenge 2016: Cancer Awareness Ride t-shirt on ride day.

    CARICOM concerned about tax haven brand caused by Panama Papers leak
    The Caribbean Community (CARICOM) expressed its concerns this week about being labeled a tax haven after the information leak, now known as the Panama Papers. CARICOM issued a statement saying the label is being used loosely. It adds that the label also does not consider that the region is fully compliant with international standards for its offshore sector. The community stresses that all CARICOM member states and Associate Member States are in compliance with the international certification process of the IMF/World Bank Financial Sector Assessment Programme (FSAP). They are also in compliance with the certification of the Global Forum of the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD), the Financial Action Task Force and the Caribbean Financial Action Task Force (CFATF). “As more disclosures unfold with respect to the leak of these financial records, CARICOM urges caution by those making the leap towards moral indignation and the unjust labelling of the financial services centres in the Community, which have taken all necessary steps to ensure compliance with international regulations and standards,” CARICOM said.

    Blogs

    My Week in Snapshots: April in Belize and Logan Paul!
    The past two weeks have been absolutely gorgeous whether I was in Ambergris Caye or Placencia. Here are some of my snapshots around both those places along with some gorgeous photos by others nabbed from Instagram. Including one (of many) from Logan Paul- @loganpaul. Self proclaimed “goofy guy with big goals”. A young man famous for his web presence – for Vine videos, for his millions of followers on Instagram, Twitter and Facebook. Here he is with Belize’s manatee researcher Jamal Galves. Maybe you’ve never heard of Logan (I hadn’t) and maybe his style isn’t your thing but influencer marketing is the real deal. Whether blogs, instagram, video – companies, and this time Oceana, are taking notice. And the huge ocean advocacy non-profit is filming with Logan here in Belize.

    International Sourcesizz

    Enterprise’s Big Caribbean Expansion
    Enterprise Rent-a-Car has undertaken a major expansion in the wider Latin America and Caribbean region. The company has opened 22 new locations throughout the region, with new locations in Belize City, SanPedro Sula and Tegucigalpa Honduras; Cancun; two in Road Town, Tortola; Crown Point, Tobago; Piarco International Airport in Trinidad and Providenciales International Airport in Turks and Caicos. Enterprise first launched in the Caribbean in 2014. “Our new openings in Latin America and the Caribbean will provide travelers access to our renowned service in some of the most popular tourist and business travel destinations,” said Peter A. Smith, vice president of global franchising at Enterprise. “Launching our brand in seven new countries and territories is an exciting milestone, but it’s just the beginning of our planned growth in this region.”

    Are Analysts Bearish Fortis Inc (TSE:FTS) After Last Week?
    The stock increased 0.38% or $0.15 on April 8, hitting $39.86. Fortis Inc (TSE:FTS) has risen 16.35% since September 2, 2015 and is uptrending. It has outperformed by 11.28% the S&P500. Fortis Inc. is a Canada-based electric and gas utility company. The company has a market cap of $11.32 billion. The Firm serves more than three million clients across Canada, the United States and the Caribbean. It has 15.58 P/E ratio. Fortis owns non-regulated hydroelectric generation assets in Canada, Belize and Upstate New York.

    Profile: The refugee crisis of Central America
    WHAT’S THE STORY? IT is a very different refugee crisis, one driven not by war or terrorism, but by organised crime. According to the United Nations, Central America is experiencing an explosion in people fleeing violence, with armed gangs at the root of the crisis. While battling the ongoing asylum seeker problem in Europe, the UN’s own refugee agency UNHCR is also urging the world to wake up to a growing problem engulfing another continent. Meanwhile, in Belize, where the population is less than 400,000, a ten-fold increase in just one year drove more than 630 people to seek asylum in 2015. And other countries in the region such as Nicaragua and Panama also report similar sharp increases in asylum requests from people fleeing the Northern Triangle countries. But these numbers mask the true scale of the problem, because most asylum seekers from the Northern Triangle go even further afield, heading instead to the United States. According to preliminary data from 2015, America is on track to receive more than 250 per cent more displaced people than in 2013 and almost twice the number of 2014.

    Broker Outlook For The Week Ahead Consolidated Water Co. Ltd.
    Recently analysts working for a variety of stock market brokerages have changed their consensus ratings and price targets on shares of Consolidated Water Co. Ltd. (NASDAQ:CWCO). The most recent broker reports which have been released note that 1 analyst has a rating of “buy”, 1 analysts “outperform”, 0 analysts “hold”, 0 analysts “underperform” and 0 analysts “sell”.

    Climate-Related Death of Coral Around World Alarms Scientists
    Coral reefs are the crucial incubators of the ocean’s ecosystem, providing food and shelter to a quarter of all marine species, and they support fish stocks that feed more than one billion people. They are made up of millions of tiny animals, called polyps, that form symbiotic relationships with algae, which in turn capture sunlight and carbon dioxide to make sugars that feed the polyps. An estimated 30 million small-scale fishermen and women depend on reefs for their livelihoods, more than one million in the Philippines alone. In Indonesia, fish supported by the reefs provide the primary source of protein. “This is a huge, looming planetary crisis, and we are sticking our heads in the sand about it,” said Justin Marshall, the director of CoralWatch at Australia’s University of Queensland. Damaged or dying reefs have been found from Réunion, off the coast of Madagascar, to East Flores, Indonesia, and from Guam and Hawaii in the Pacific to the Florida Keys in the Atlantic.

    Videos

  • Maya Ruta 2016, 22min. Het Maya spoor (maart 2016). Van Mexico, door Belize en via Guatemala weer terug naar Mexico

  • Belize. Rich in Love., 3.5min. Caye Caulker & Raggamuffin Sailing Trip.

  • Putnam’s Visit, 7min.

  • BELIZE, 5min.


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