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Today's Belize News: January 29, 2013 #456702
01/29/13 09:10 AM
01/29/13 09:10 AM
Joined: Oct 1999
Posts: 70,262
oregon, spr
Marty Offline OP

Marty  Offline OP


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The San Pedro Sun

Byron Espat-Estrada stabbed to death inside nightclub
Byron-EstradaA family on Ambergris Caye is mourning the tragic loss of yet another family member as a result of an ongoing rivalry. The victim is 25-year-old Byron Espat Estrada, a boat captain of the San Pedrito area of San Pedro Town. Estrada is the second son in the family to have died under similar, tragic circumstances. Estrada’s younger brother Charlie Espat was one of the two San Pedro teens found partially buried 50 yards off a feeder road in the Orange Walk District on June 9, 2012. Charlie and his cousin Edwardo Alamilla had been reported missing on June 5th and their decomposed bodies were found four days later with apparent gunshot wounds to the head. According to authorities on the island, Byron Espat Estrada was stabbed at least 22 times inside the men’s bathroom at Daddy Rock Night Club. He collapsed near the bar counter and was taken to the Dr Otto Rodriguez San Pedro PolyClinic II where he was pronounced dead. Superintendent of Police and officer Commanding San Pedro Police Department Luis Castellanos said that the incident happened around 3:30AM. “On Saturday the 26th of January 2013, at about 3:39AM, police received information of a stabbing incident at the Daddy Rock Disco (Night Club). As a result we quickly responded and upon arriving at the disco we found a young gentleman by the name of Byron Estrada who was seen bleeding from his neck area, his chest and his back,” said Castellanos, who indicated that the victim was taken to the island’s PolyClinic where he was officially pronounced dead at about 4:32AM. “We have launched an investigation to see what actually happened; and who is the perpetrator of this crime. So far we have detained some people for questioning and we believe that one of them may be able to assist us in our investigation…the incident wasn’t a fight. We received information that apparently the victim entered the bathroom and whilst in the bathroom he was stabbed. He came out, while the disco was still in function, and ran towards the bar where he collapsed, and where persons assisted him and took him downstairs. It happened very quickly and it doesn’t look like it was a fight.” Police say that they observed numerous stab wounds to the upper part of the victim’s body, plus cut injuries to the neck area. And while police investigation into the death is ongoing, the mother of the victim, Pricilla Espat, who has lost two of her sons as a result of crime in less than one-year, explained that police were not compassionate to their pain.

Steven Valencia, PUP Cayo Chairman found murdered in his home
Steven ValenciaThe Chairman of the People’s United Party Executive Committee in Cayo Central, 40-year-old Steven Michael Valencia was murdered inside his home in Santa Elena Town. The former resident of San Pedro Town was shot and killed in the presence of his two children in his La Loma Luz Boulevard home. According to police the incident happened shortly before 9PM on Thursday January 24th. According to Police, they responded to a report of shooting at around 9PM on La Loma Luz Boulevard in Santa Elena Town. Upon arrival police say that they observed the body of Valencia in one of the bedrooms with apparent gunshot wounds to the upper back, right foot and right thigh. “Initial investigations revealed that about 8:45PM on said date, Valencia was at home with his two daughters when a noise was heard coming from behind the house and at the same time, the back door was stamped open and two males of dark complexion, one of whom was armed with a shotgun, entered the house unmasked, ordered him to lie on the floor, demanded money and fired shots at him, causing the fatal injuries,” said a police report. Valencia was shot in the presence of his two children, one a six year old, who told police that $7 was all they managed to steal from his pocket.

Ambergris Today

Our Lady of Fatima Statue Coming to San Pedro
The San Pedro Roman Catholic Church and the Community of San Pedro are preparing for the 2nd Pilgrimage of the Travelling Statue of Our Lady of Fatima to Belize which is set to take place on Monday, February 11, 2013. The statue of Our Lady of Fatima will be arriving in San Pedro on Monday, February 11, 2013, at 4:00 p.m., everyone is invited to welcome the statue at the John Greif II Airport. The statue will be taken to the San Pedro RC Church for the official coronation to take place at 4:15p.m. At 5:00p.m. a rosary for Our Lady of Fatima will take place, at 6:00 p.m. a mass followed by a candle light procession through the main streets of San Pedro. On Tuesday, February 12, 2013, a boat procession and boat blessing will take place at 7:15 a.m. after which the statue leaves the island.

New Rules and Regulations Set for Carnaval 2013
Even before the San Pedro Town Council had made announcement of the new rules and regulation for the Carnaval 2013 celebrations, some island folk were stirred up at the mention that there would be some new changes that would alter the traditional celebrations. The San Pedro Town Council has released the following rules and regulations for Carnaval 2013 for La Isla Bonita. After much consultation with the people of San Pedro and meetings with the Carnaval committee the following was decided for this year’s Carnaval celebrations. Mayor Daniel Guerrero announced that there will be lots more policing taking place during the celebrations and stiff penalties for those who do not comply with the rules that are intended to make Carnaval a safe celebration for everybody and more respect given to the businesses who have suffered much vandalism in the past years. Below are the new rules and program of events:

Flashbacks: Ambergris Lodge a Local Hangout Spot
“Carmita, let’s go swimming in front of the Ambergris Lodge,” said Lupita enthusiastically during the summer of 1975. “Mek we go,” responded Carmita in a colorful Creole dialect. “There are a few dories front a di beach and I sure Mista George Stefanko will lend us wan paddle fi go paddling.” Pretty soon Carmita and her friend were at the beachfront paddling their dory and having a splendid time, San Pedro style. On the beach several boys and girls were getting ready for a warm mid afternoon swim at the most beautiful white spot in front of the village. The Ambergris Lodge was at the time advertising delicious seafood and an enjoyable time skin diving. There was a lovely wide sandy beach with only a little bit of sea grass as Mr. Stefanko insisted that the beach be cleaned of logs and debris except for the sea grass which was thought to prevent beach erosion. It was a sight and a site enjoyed by locals and a few tourists alike when Ambergris Caye had much of its natural appeal. Today Mayan Princess has managed to keep that natural and exquisite appeal.

25 Years Ago: Antonio's Letter Is Rejected
Well as you can see, Antonio’s request to formalize his relationship was rejected not because he was not worthy or charming but because the father considered his daughter to be a bit too young. Girls traditionally got married at 16 or 17 years of age, but fifteen was also quite common. This letter to the young lover was not to be interpreted wrongly so he could continue to court the young lady by going to parties, or walks to the park and holding hands but that was about it. If he could steal a moment to steal a kiss, well that was his luck or his prowess or charisma, let’s say. However, that had to be done privately and not in the presence of the father. To tell the truth, some mothers were more lenient and allowed a bit more contact or close-up moments. Romantic mothers indeed!

Youth Writing Contest
Deadline: February 9, 2013 Topic: “WHAT LOVE MEANS TO ME” Love to write? Enter the San Pedro Library Youth Writing Contest and tell us in your own words about what love means to you. Requirements * only hard copies (handwritten or typed) will be accepted. * Essays must be between 75 to 100 words in length. Eligibility * Writer must be in STD IV, V, VI and students of schools located in, or residents of San Pedro Ambergris Caye and Caye Caulker. Awards * The best 5 essays of each school will be display at the San Pedro Library and Schools. * Winners will be honored, along with their teacher at a special event at the San Pedro Library February 14, 2013. * Prizes will be given to 1st, 2nd, & 3rd place winners. There will be also 10 consolation prizes.

Home Style Cooking and Flavors at El Fogon
El Fogon, the name says it all! Spanish for fire hearth, you know that when you dine at this popular restaurant you will be served some of the most authentic Belizean food on the island. The food is unique in flavor as mostly everything on the menu is prepared on an outside fire hearth, used in the olden days when San Pedro was just a small fishing village with no stoves. It's that authentic taste that is infused with the smokiness of the fire hearth that keeps bringing people back to El Fogon. Owned by island locals who have come to prepare recipes passed on to them by generations, El Fogon features food inspired by Latin America, the Caribbean and Mexico.

Heroes Soar Over Lamanai Maya Ruin Belize
The Ministry of Health Belize set out on a very important mission alongside American Soldiers to Sarteneja Village, Corozal. They combined human power and will to give medical services to the community in need. The team provided the people with vitamins, medical attention, meds, breast exams, pap smears and health education. Even on a day’s work Dr. Marin got the chance to take an outstanding picture of them flying over the Lamanai Maya Ruin. Keep up the good work!

Misc Belizean Sources

Taking a bite out of Lionfish population on the Belize Barrier Reef with dive friends.Tranquility Bay, outside the reef. Ambergris Caye.

Rotaract Bonfire Night
The Rotaract Club of San Ignacio had their first social. They had a bonfire at Hode's. They've finished planning their Red Carpet Affair fund raiser. It'll be at Meluchi's on Saturday, February the 16th.

Runway Release 2013 Pictures
Demian Solano was at Rebecca Stirm's Autumn/Winter fashion show, and he captured some amazing pictures. He's posted a few, including a couple that have the 2 Miss Belizes, Destinee Arnold and Chantae Guy. Many more to come.

Rotary Donates Laptops to SHJC
Feelgood story of the day. The Rotary Club of San Ignacio donated 3 Dell laptops to Sacred Heart Junior College's Primary Ed department. Thanks again for all you do around Cayo, Rotary! "SHJC is grateful for the donation to SHJC Primary Education Department from the Rotary through the Belize Literacy Program. The PE dept received tree Dell laptops with educational software installed."

BELTRAIDE and Idealab officially LAUNCH Belize’s First Investment Magazine!
The Belize Trade and Investment Development Service (BELTRAIDE) and Idealab Studios are privileged to announce the launch of the Inaugural Issue of Belize’s First Business and Investment Magazine “INVEST BELIZE”. The Launch will take place on Wednesday, January 30th, 2013, at Best Western Belize Biltmore Plaza, from 2:00p.m. – 5:00p.m. Invest Belize will be used as a promotional tool to showcase Belize in a progressive light for what it represents: an investment destination. The magazine is strategically featured to aggressive investors who are seeking to invest in new dynamic markets, such as Belize. This publication features the major investment opportunities, while providing up to date information on policy, trade agreements, statistics, trade and projections to the investment community in Belize and abroad.

Channel 7

Unions Say They Were Disrespected
Tomorrow at 9:00 am in Belmopan, the teachers' union with support from the Public Service Union and the Association of Public Service Senior Managers will stage a mass protest. It's been in the making for weeks - and today the union leaders made the media rounds to crystallize their public stance. We caught them at a press conference in Belize City. Teachers Union President Luke Palacio led the charge:.. Luke Palacio, President BNTU "The Belize National Teachers Union has the most organize, the most powerful labor movement in this country will be demonstrating in Belmopan tomorrow to show that we are not satisfied with the disrespect that has been shown to the three unions negotiating with the Government of Belize. We want the public support; we want them to understand that this fight is not about more money in the pockets of teachers only. We are negotiating for all person paid from the public purse, meaning the nurses, BDF, police and any other persons who is paid from the public purse. We are going to have this demonstration tomorrow, it's a peaceful protest. We again are saying that for those who will join us we want no political slogan; no slandering, no name calling and any other organization that is prepared to lend us their support again remember the focus must be on the Collective Bargaining Agreement." And the union leaders say the protest is an important means of gaining leverage in ongoing talks with government - they say this because the PM has reached out to them in the past week:

Man Fatally Stabbed 22 Times In Nightclub Restroom
UB Students got the streets of Belmopan warmed up today with a small protest of their own. And we'll have that for you a little later on in the news. But first, the weekend witnessed the 13th murder of 2013. This one happened in San Pedro at a nightclub where a 25 year old was hunted down and stabbed to death in a nightclub restroom. Tonight, the family of Byron Estrada Espat are awaiting a post mortem on his body - so that they can proceed with funeral arrangements. Daniel Ortiz travelled to the island yesterday where he spoke to his grieving mother and to police investigators. Here's his report: Priscilla Espat - Mother of Deceased "I can't take the pain. It's now 2 sons that they've taken away from me, Charlie Espat, and Byron. And you know what? It's not fair because the law hasn't done anything about it." Reporter "What is the police saying about the assassination, and how is the investigation going?" Priscilla Espat - Mother of Deceased "They are saying that my son is involved in drugs. That's not true; he is not a drug dealer. I know 100% that he works hard."

Footballers Greeted Liked Heroes In Grand Homecoming
TODAY it was a grand homecoming for the national football team, known internationally as the Belize Jaguars. They finished fourth in the Copa Centroamericana 2013. It wasn't the outcome we might have hoped for as they lost the semi-final match against Costa Rica - and the third place game against El Salvador - both times by a score of one to nil. But they came home to a heroes' welcome, nonetheless. And deservingly so, because this team did what no other Belizean National Football team had done before: they won a game in the regional cup - and didn't come home in last place! More than that, they had a number of respectable losses behind inspired play by goalkeeper Woodrow West. And so while they didn't shock the world, they did put them on notice that Belize's football programme is up and coming to contender status. We were at the airport when they arrived today - and here's how the motorcade went:.. Ruperto Vicente, President - FFB "This is a good feeling. It is an excellent show of support for our National Team - Belizeans coming out here to support us and certainly I am happy and this gives me great motivation to be able to continue the work and continue to build our Belizean football." Harrison "Cafu" Roches - Forward - Belize National Team "We really appreciate it. I feel happy to see people supporting us like this. This make us feel great."

Massive Collision On Northern Highway
There was a terrible traffic accident on the Northern highway on Saturday morning: It left one man dead and 10 persons injured. It happened at about 6:45 am between miles 31 and 32 when a southbound Toyota 4 Runner collided into a Tillett bus which was heading to Orange Walk. The impact was massive, launching vehicle parts all across the road and ripping off half the body of the Four Runner which was left to look like it had been cut in half. The driver, Prison warden Juvencio Serrano was crushed in the driver's seat and died immediately. The bus driver 58 year old Carlos Herrera was also crushed behind the wheel of the bus. He survived though, but had serious injuries to his chest, face left arm and feet. He was taken to the Northern Regional Hospital while 10 other persons - passengers on the bus - received varying injuries. Most of them did not expect the impact, had no way of bracing for it, and were launched violently forward when the collision occurred. Police say Serrano caused the accident when he lost control of his Toyota 4 Runner and collided into the bus.

Three Vehicle Collision In Corozal
And that wasn't the only accident involving a bus this weekend. As we told you on Friday night's news there was a three vehicle collision near the northern border. It happened between mile 88 and 89 AT 6:25 on a wet highway as night was falling. A BBOC bus driven by 47 year old Christino Rodriguez was travelling from the border to Corozal Town with 35 passengers when a minivan driven by Jeremias Garcia crashed into the back of the bus. Passengers from the bus walked out and two of them Doris Noh and Lillian Roches were knocked down when a third vehicle, a Subaru Legacy collided into the van causing injuries to its driver Jeremias Garcia as well as Noh and Roches. 22 year old Doris Noh had both feet apparently broken and one 37 year old Lillian Roches received a large wound on the right foot. 34 year old Jeremias Garcia received a wound to the right foot as well.

UB Students Protest
At the top of the newscast - we told you about the Union's protest which is scheduled for tomorrow in Belmopan. And while the unions will do it tomorrow, the University of Belize did it today. They held their protest against an increase in admission fees for new students. The issue has been on the back burner for weeks, but with no response from the Minister of Education, the UB student government moved it to the front burner with a protest in Belmopan today. It started at 8:30 am with a very modest crowd - but from there it gained some momentum. Not enough to shut down the school, and probably not enough to force any reaction from the ministry but certainly enough to give us a story. Monica Bodden has the story:.. Monica Bodden reporting Over one hundred UB students marched off the University of Belize Belmopan Campus this morning and made their way through the streets of Belmopan and in front of the National Assembly. They all held posters and chanted their dissatisfaction in the subsidy cut that has been imposed on new students. Hope Amadi - President, UB Student Government "Today demonstration we do hope that with the change the perception of people towards the subsidy cuts especially the minister for him to understand that the students are not happy with the cuts that has been imposed on the new students that are coming in. This issue started far away from 2006. In 2006 we had about 32% poverty rate and during that period the minister said that the poverty rate is too much for us to ask more from the students. It doesn't make any sense for we to ask more from the students. Today we are at about 44% poverty rate and if you said no in 2006 when the poverty rate was 30% plus why would you not imposed it when the poverty rate 40% plus, it doesn't make any sense. We are asking the minister to reconsider and allow the students on the subsidy that he has cut put it back for the students so that they can enjoy going to school and have a reason to go to school."

Dr. K Leslie Adresses UB Graduates
And while today the mood at UB was outspoken, on Saturday it was formal as the university marked its Sixteenth Commencement Exercises at its main Campus in Belmopan. The 480 graduates received diplomas at the Associate, Bachelor, Certificate and Diploma levels. They also got to hear words of advice from keynote speaker, the Director of the Caribbean Community Climate Change Center, Dr. Kenrick R. Leslie who urged them to take charge of the future:.. Dr. Kenrick R. Leslie, Executive Dir., Climate Change Center "You must ask yourself the question; what does all of this means to me? Here I mean not only what you have clean the University over the past years but also from the information that I have provided you today and since we all know we cannot escape the clutches on climate change. Your challenge to yourself must be what will I do about it. The key element of change is yourself. The attainment of resilience cannot only reside with our policy makers but with our youth and you represent that element. You first must be convinced, you must believe, you must be aggressive, you must be passionate, you must be committed to the cause to help our beloved country survive the ravages of climate change."

Man Charged For Trying To Kill
2 weeks ago, 7News told you about 20 year-old Kent Moss, a resident of Freedom Street, who was shot on January 15. Well, tonight 22 year-old Albert Moody, a resident of Jane Usher Boulevard, is in jail because police say that he was the gunman. As we reported, Moss was on a verandah at #7099 Raccoon Street Extension, having a conversation with a friend, when a dark complexioned man came from behind a house and fired several shots at him. He suffered 3 gunshot injuries, but survived after he was rushed to the KHMH. Police charged Moody with attempted murder, grievous harm, and use of deadly means of harm. He was arraigned today before Chief Magistrate Anne Marie Smith, who remanded him to prison due to the nature of the offenses.

Woman Robbed By Neighbors In Mahogany Heights
There was a burglary in Mahogany Heights over the weekend and the burglars are from the same community. It happened early Sunday morning just before 2. Neighbors noticed when 4 burglars pried opened the back door of Shelly Edwards's home. Edwards and her family were not at home at the time so neighbors alerted the police who responded quickly. The robbers escaped with a variety of items including a bag of soap power and ice-cream - but they didn't make very far after they were caught red-handed. We found out more from the homeowner Shelly Edwards:.. Shelly Edwards, Victim of Burglary "I got a call from my neighbors stating that they burglarized my home. I went away for the weekend to spend my birthday with my mom. When I got that call I hurriedly came. I spoke to the police and they confirm that my home was burglarized. They told me that they retrieve the stuff and they got the culprits in custody." "I could tell you that I have very good neighbors because they were the ones who call the police and alerted them about what was happening." Reporter "How did the burglars gained access?" Shelly Edwards, Victim of Burglary "They gained entry through the back door. They used a crow bar to pry open the back door because the police have the crow bar, they found it in my yard. Because of the quick police response here they got the culprits."

The Sports Bar Effect
As we told you earlier, the National Football Team returned home today triumphant. True, they only went 1 - 1, and 3, but that one win was more than Belize has ever had in that regional tournament. And the losses - while still losses - were the most respectable Belize has ever had. And yesterday afternoon, hopes were high as the team competed for 3rd place against El Salvador. Avid football fans and casual viewers were glued to their televisions watching in eager anticipation to see if Belize could pull it out. That's what they were doing at Cholo Sports Bar in San Pedro. Our team was there on another story, but stopped in to share the excitement - because, let's be honest, this kind of international match featuring Belize doesn't happen too often. We sampled the sentiment of the fans who were very proud to see their boys featured on the sports bar's 5 big screens for the first in a very long time. Here's what they told us:

Rebecca Storms the Fashion World
While the football team got a motorcade, another Belizean who is getting major love from the public is the young fashion designer, Rebecca Stirm. Viewers may remember that Stirm wowed the Caribbean Community with her talent for design by placing 3rd in season 2 of Jamaica's fashion designing reality TV series, Mission Catwalk. And while she gave an admirable showing on the international scene, she is now being embraced by her Belizean fans. On Saturday night, her first Runway Show was held at the Princess Hotel. 7News attended what turned out to be a glamorous evening. Here's what Stirm told us about surprise of the overwhelming success: Daniel Ortiz reporting The Kings Room was packed on Saturday night, filled to capacity with socialites and local VIP's who waited in anticipation for the Rebecca Stirm Fashion Show.? And, with more than 4 months in the making, she delivered.

The Passing Of a Union Giant
Tonight, on the eve of what promises to be a major protest by the Teacher's Union we note the passing of one man who was always on the frontline of those protests. John Pinelo career teacher, principal and former BNTU President passed away at his home in San Ignacio this weekend at the age of 64. He had been battling cancer for some years. His family tells us Mr. John Pinelo was instrumental in molding the lives of many young Belizeans serving as either a teacher or principal for many of Belize's Schools including: Santa Elena R.C., Roaring Creek R.C., Sacred Heart Primary, Bullet Tree Falls R.C., Saint Francis Xavier R.C., Succotz R.C. and Sacred Heart College. They add that Unionism in Belize is synonymous with the name John Pinelo. Mr. Pinelo has been involved in the Belize National Teacher's Union since its inception serving as local branch officer for the San Ignacio and Benque Viejo Branches. He was elected to the National Presidency in 1984 for the first time and since then was re-elected five more times holding this position until April 2003.

Channel 5

Unions full day demonstration of government
A teacher’s demonstration has morphed into a massive protest; thousands are expected to show their muscle in Belmopan. It starts in about fourteen hours and teachers will be joined by other union members of the National Trade Union Congress when they descend on Independence Hill. The battle cry is over salary adjustments which the unions [...]

N.T.U.C.B. dismisses Chamber of Commerce comments
Last Friday, the Belize Chamber of Commerce and Industry issued a statement regarding the wage bill issue that stands to increase salary adjustments are approved by government. It said that compensation increases for public sector workers should be tied in with measurable performance improvements.  The B.C.C.I. also said that it can’t condone the area of [...]

UB students’ small protest
While teachers will show their strength on Tuesday in Belmopan, this morning, the capital was also the venue for another protest. A group of students staged a small protest over government’s decision to cut off subsidies to the university.  They say they want government to re-instate the funding because fees are unaffordable to new students. [...]

Priscilla Espat loses another son to murder
There was a vicious murder on the island of San Pedro, Ambergris Caye in the early hours of Saturday morning. Twenty-five year old Byron Estrada was stabbed multiple times as he socialized at a local club; he succumbed to his injuries soon after. At first glance it would appear to be a random murder unconnected [...]

A Swan song for a beleaguered family
The murder of twenty-five year old boat captain Byron Estrada came as a shock to his mother, but she is certainly no stranger to tragedy and no stranger to violent death and allegations that those deaths are drug related.  When the dots are connected, a picture emerges linking the touristy tropical island of San Pedro [...]

One dead as SUV and bus collide on highway
Road traffic accidents are frequent on our highways and account for a significant percentage of deaths. But despite negative perception, serious accidents involving buses are not frequent. An accident early Saturday morning between a Tillett’s bus travelling from Belize City to Orange Walk and an SUV travelling in the opposite direction was particularly gruesome. One [...]

Villager stabs villager in attempted murder incident
Thirty-three year old Rene Murillo of August Pine Ridge has been charged with attempted murder, use of deadly means of harm and dangerous harm. On Sunday night, sixty-one year old farmer also of August Pine Ridge Casario Ku, reported that around eight thirty pm, while walking in the village, he was approached by Murillo who [...]

Shooting leads to Moody’s attempted murder charge
  Over the weekend, twenty year old Albert Moody, a resident of Jane Usher Boulevard, was detained in connection with the shooting of Kent Moss. When he appeared before Magistrate Anne Marie Smith, Moody was slapped with three charges: attempted murder, grievous harm and use of deadly means of harm. Bail was denied and Moody [...]

Justice for Shelly Edwards; burglars caught
Four persons are tonight in big trouble after they were allegedly caught red handed with items stolen from the house of Shelly Edwards. According to reports, just after two on Saturday morning, Edward’s home in Mahogany Heights was burglarized and stolen were several items including a microwave, a sound system and several other items totaling [...]

“To Sir with Love,” B.N.T.U.’s Pinelo passes away
There is one face that won’t be at the N.T.U.C.B. protest in Belmopan. Former B.N.T.U. President, John Pinelo, had held the teachers union together for many years and led them through negotiations and protests with governments.  Pinelo was in the frontline with the B.N.T.U. in the 2010 demonstration. The long-serving union president passed away over [...]

480 students graduate from UB
The University of Belize’s sixteenth commencement exercise was held at the Central Campus in Belmopan on Saturday. Four hundred and eighty students graduated and of that amount three hundred and thirty, roughly sixty-eight percent, were females. The President of the University of Belize, Doctor Cary Fraser congratulated the graduates while the guest speaker and Director [...]

Hero’s Welcome; Jaguars return home
The Belize National Football “A” Selection, also known as the Jaguars, returned to Belize today after making history in the Copa Centro Americana Games held in San Jose, Costa Rica. While the boys from Belize might not have won first place, they were the official big story of the competition, surprising regional football observers who [...]

Sports Monday highlights with James Adderley
Good evening, I’m James Adderley and this is Sports Monday.   The Copa Centro Americana produced its 2013 Champion yesterday and while that honor does not belong to Belize, our national football team did make an enormous splash inside this event hosted at Costa Rica. For the 1st time Belize won a ballgame beating Nicaragua [...]

Re: Today's Belize News: January 29, 2013 [Re: Marty] #456703
01/29/13 09:11 AM
01/29/13 09:11 AM
Joined: Oct 1999
Posts: 70,262
oregon, spr
Marty Offline OP

Marty  Offline OP

More News: Scroll up from here


Unions Plan Protest For Tomorrow In The Capital
Poised to demonstrate on Tuesday in Belmopan in response to what they term as quote, “disrespect on the part of the Government” over a salary increase, the Belize National Teachers’ Union, the Public Service Union and the Association of Public Service Senior Managers,...

Man Receives Twenty Two Stabs Inside a Nightclub Restroom
A man was stabbed to death on Saturday morning in San Pedro Town. The victim has been identified as twenty five year old Byron Estrada. According to reports, Estrada was killed inside of the bathroom at a nightclub in the town. According to reports, Estrada was viciou...

VIP Party Suggests Resolution For The Unions Issue
The Vision Inspired by the People political party today issued a statement saying it stands in Solidarity with the Unions. Public Relations Officer Robert Lopez today told Love News that the VIP has a suggestion on how to resolve the issue. The VIP statement suggests that the...

Former Union President Passes
As teachers prepare for a big demonstration on Tuesday in Belmopan, the education sector in mourning the passing of one of its stalwarts. Former school teacher, and president extraordinaire of the Belize National Teachers Union John Pinelo passed away over the weekend, following ...

University Students Protest Government's Subsidy Cut
Students of the University of Belize abandoned classes today and took to the picket lines. At issue is the matter of what the UB Student Government calls burdensome registration fees. While the UB Student government protested the discontinuation of the government subsi...

Belize National Football Team Returns Home
After touching down at the Phillip Goldson International Airport, the team headed to the Brodies Parking Lot on the Phillip Goldson Highway where the players got a chance to speak about their experiences and expressed thanks to all who made the football journey possible. &nb...

30K Burglary In Punta Gorda
Police in Toledo are investigating a burglary in Punta Gorda town. A fifty two year old Mechanic reported to police that he left his brother’s house for which he is caretaker on Tuesday and traveled to Abalone Caye. The man says that when he returned home days later, he dis...

Two Teenagers Reported Missing
Two teenagers have been reported missing. The first is sixteen year old Spencer Bodden, a student of the Independence High School. According to the family of the teenage boy, he left home around six o’clock last Wednesday morning to go to classes and has not returned ...

Belize City Resident Faces Charges of Attempted Murder and Grievous Harm
Twenty-two year old Albert Moody Jr., a resident of Jane Usher Boulevard, was charged with attempted murder when he appeared in Court today. Moody was also charged with grievous harm and use of deadly means of harm. No plea was taken because the offences are indictable. Neither could t...

Senior Citizen Refuses To Do Community Service For Theft
Seventy-two year old Frank Jaskin, a.k.a. “Big Frank Vernon”, a vagrant who failed to do 100 days of community service, a sentence he was given after he pled guilty to theft in December last year, was sent to prison today to do a sentence of two months in default of communi...


Philip Goldson Highway Plays Witness To Two Major Traffic Accidents, One Proves Fatal
Two major accidents took place on the Northern Highway over the weekend, the first on Friday followed by a tragic one on Saturday. On Friday evening, sometime around 6:30, police received reports of a major traffic accident on the Phillip Goldson Highway near four miles in the Corozal District. Reports to our newsroom indicate that under the heavy rain which poured on Friday, a passenger bus was unloading passengers when a white van careened into the back of the bus. Lilian Roches was travelling in the van when it careened into the back of the bus. Roches suffered extensive injuries to her legs. While persons on the scene were rendering aid to Roches, the accident was compounded by the wet conditions which caused a small car to crash into the back of the van causing an accident on an accident. Reports to our newsroom indicate that two women who were standing behind the van were hit by the car causing severe injuries to their bodies. Rescuers managed to free Roches from the wreck just in time before the car crashed into the van. Roches was transferred to the Northern Regional Hospital where she remains in a stable condition. The other two ladies were treated and released.

Fruta Bomba Employees On The Verge Of Losing Their Jobs
On January 22nd, 2013 we brought you the story of the bee keepers in Progresso Village alleging their apiaries were being disturbed by the insecticides and pesticides Fruta Bomba uses on their papaya farms. For almost a year the bee keepers have been in a constant battle to safe guard their bees and their honey making livelihood. Well tonight, not only the beekeepers are being disturbed, but the farmers employed by Fruta Bomba from Progresso Village. This morning, seven workers of the Fruta Bomba Company stopped by our studios to say they too are at the edge of the cliff of losing their jobs if the issue of the beekeepers is not dealt with properly and adequately by officials of the government. Here is there side of the story. Juan Rivera-Fruta Bomba Worker “Estas tres personas hace ocho años dieron el mismo problema con la compañía quiso proyectar más trabajo en esa aldea. Eso de químicas Fruta Bomba o cualquier persona que va a trabajar la agricultura tiene que usar foliares parra el crecimiento para fortalecer la flor a nivel nacional e internacional, Fruta bomba está usando estos foliares bajo de control nadie está permitiendo eso estamos muy claro. “Cuando vas a fumigar tratándose de estos venenos tienes que fumigar para hongos adonde sea vamos al mercado tienes que usar estos tipos de foliares para fortalecerse.”

Stabbing Incident Lands One Man In Jail
Two persons are not spending these nights at home in the comfort of their beds and in the company of family. On Sunday, January 27th, Orange Walk Police were called out to August Pine Ridge where they observed one man suffering from stab wounds to his stomach. According to the official police report, sixty-one year old Belizean farmer Casario Ku, informed police that he was walking home on the evening of the 27th when he was approached by thirty-three year old Rene Murrillo. Ku alleges that he and Murrillo got into an argument which quickly escalated to a physical altercation. During this physical struggle, Murrillo produced a knife and inflicted a stab wound to the stomach of Ku. Ku was immediately transported to the Northern Regional Hospital where he received medical attention. Murrillo has since been arrested and charged for the crimes of Attempted Murder, Use of Deadly Means of Harm, and Dangerous Harm.

Leroy Lewis Abandons National Selection
And while Belize’s National A-Selection has respectively departed from the tournament with much respect by the other Central American national teams, head coach Leroy Lewis announced over the weekend that he has decided to leave the team. The Costa Rican National was hired as head coach on October 3rd of last year and after four months on the job, Lewis announced yesterday that effective immediately he is no longer the head coach. In the post-game press conference, Lewis stated that he believes that Football Federation of Belize is not well structured and that there is no guarantee that it would change in the near future. Here are his words: Leroy Lewis, Former National Coach Lewis has no signed contract with the FFB and in a press conference back in October, Lewis told the media that quote, “When you have mutual trust, you don’t have to sign no contract”, end quote. We will bring you the team’s reaction to this in tomorrow’s newscast. Allegations surrounding his resignation stem from difference of opinions in Costa Rica by FFB representatives and Lewis in regards to the team’s workout schedule. Additional friction is alleged by Leroy Lewis playing a defensive stand as opposed to an attack offense. But that’s not all, we understand that emails had been circulated as soon as Belize had qualified for the Copa Oro concerning the replacement of certain players with the present team with others who failed to qualify for the team. We will follow these allegations made by certain players of Belize’s National Selection and former coach Leroy Lewis in the days ahead.

U.B Students Take Their Discontent To Belmopan
This morning, over 300 students of the University of Belize walked out of classes and marched to Independence Hill where they held a peaceful protest. The root of the discontent of students stems from Government’s withdrawal of its financial subsidy towards registration and school fees. As a result of the canceled subsidy, student’s fees have seen a steep increase of about 60%. The increase in student fees was to take effect this month. For weeks, the Student Governments Association have been expressing their concern and difficulties faced by students in socio-economic challenges. The protest started at the UB Belmopan campus where the students congregated after walking out of class and then they proceeded to march to Independence Hill. The students were joined by past Student Body President Moses Sulf and other SGA presidents and representatives. The demonstration ended sometime around noon today. Today the students of the University of Belize demonstrated in front of the National Assembly Building, and tomorrow, that same venue will host another demonstration, this one expected to be much larger as the Belize National Teachers Union will demonstrate against Government in regards to the salary increments they have requested. We will have our cameras out there tomorrow and bring you the story in tomorrow’s newscast.

Belize's National Team Loses Respectably To El Salvador
Belizeans here at home and around the world were abuzz over the past few days as Belize’s pride and joy, the Jaguars of Belize participated in the UNCAF Copa Centroamericana. Social networks and media houses throughout Belize featured stories, articles and posts on the level of play Belize has achieved. Belizeans once more had reason to believe in Belizean football and in a brighter future for the sport both locally and internationally. In this tournament alone, Belize managed to make history by advancing to the Copa Ora tournament, winning their very first Central American professional team, qualifying for the semifinals and placement match, and signing two of its national players to professional ball clubs. Reporter Hipolito Novelo recapped yesterday’s third place match against El Salvador. The brand new national stadium in San Jose, Costa Rica came to life yesterday with the two final matches of the UNCAF Copa Centroamericana. In the first game of the day, Belize took the field for the last time dressed in their white jerseys to face off against El Salvador in the third place match. Belizeans across the world tuned in to watch their National Selection make history for the second time in playing for a placement game, especially since the team was referred to as the Cinderella Team of Central America.


Boat Captain Byron Estrada Espat murdered in San Pedro
There was a murder at a San Pedro Town nightclub this weekend. It happened at Daddy Rock Night Club located at Cent...

Prison officer Juvencio Serrano Jr. dies in Traffic Collission
There was a fatal traffic accident on Saturday on the Phillip Goldson highway. Just before seven o'clock on Saturda...

33 years-old old Rene Murillo charged for attempted murder in August Pine Ridge Village
There was an attempted murder reported in the Orange Walk district. 61year old Casario Ku, a Belizean Farmer of Aug...

University of Belize students take to the streets in protest of fees increase
Tomorrow, Belize's major Trade Unions will be having a six hour demonstration in the City of Belmopan for an increa...

The University of Belize holds its Sixteenth Commencement Exercises
The University of Belize held its Sixteenth Commencement Exercises on Saturday January 26, for students, who succes...

Unlawful Carnal Knowledge in Camalote Village
Belmopan Police are investigation a report of Unlawful Carnal Knowledge. On Friday January 25 an 11 year old minor ...

Unions are getting ready for Tuesday's Belmopan demonstration
Unions are getting ready for Tuesday's Belmopan demonstration. Tomorrow, in the City of Belmopan, activists and rep...

The Ministry of Education releases statement on the Union Demonstration
The Ministry of Education sent out a press release today saying that in view of the public announcement made by the...

The NTUCB says that Chamber of Commerce is "self-serving"
The NTUCB says that Chamber of Commerce is "self-serving". While the unions gear up to march on Belmopan, the union...

Tributes paid to the late Union leader John Pinelo
While on the protest line in the nation's capital on Tuesday, unionists and teachers in particular will be carrying...

Belizean born Joel Evans collected his 5th Emmy at the 27th Annual Midsouth Regional Emmy Awards.
An Emmy, is the most prestigious award in television production worldwide, and is considered the television equival...

Belizean designer Rebecca Stirm's fashion show was a huge success
Another Pastor's kid from Belize has been invading the culture with her gifts and abilities. Belizean clothing desi...

The Guardian

Caye Caulker Chronicles

Caye Caulker Animal Health Shelter Fundraiser
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Belize and Guatemala take territorial dispute to World Court
The Organization of American States (OAS) says its Secretary General, José Miguel Insulza, met with the Ministers of Foreign Affairs from Belize and Guatemala on the protracted territorial dispute between both countries. “The meeting’s main objective was to exchange information on the tasks that both countries are committed to carry out in preparation for the referenda concerning recourse to the Court of the Hague Convention on the territorial issue,” said a statement from the OAS. In the tripartite meeting, which took place within the framework of the European (EU)-Community of Latin American and Caribbean States (CELAC) Summit here, the OAS said both officials “explained the situation in each country, with a view toward finalizing the consultation agreed and renewed the commitment of their governments to carry it out.”


Tale of Five Cities: Visiting an Orchid Garden
One of the most interesting things we did in San Cristobal, Mexico was visit the Orquideas Moxviquil botanical garden. The garden is a preserve for over 600 species of Chiapas orchids, cacti, bromeliads, ferns, and other flora. Most of the specimens were rescued from within the Chiapas state from sites that were disturbed by human activities. It was a little over a mile from our hotel as the garden is north of the city in a more rural area, but we had a beautiful day for it. We had a bit of difficulty finding the entrance and ended up hiking along a woodland trail in the Moxviquil Reserve (which the garden is part of). We finally realized that we were not in the right place, back-tracked, and went farther up the road where we saw this sign.Before we knew it, we found the gardens up the road just a bit. This place was absolutely gorgeous! The owner met us and gave us a quick tour as he had to get back to a ceremony there on the premises. We spent a good long time walking around and looking at orchids and other specimens. And after we'd seen all the plants, we spent a good amount of time bird-watching -- of course we had brought our binoculars! Calla Lily -- one of the few non-native plants in the garden

Ever evolving
I was watching the new Bruno Mars video Locked out of Heaven this morning and got thinking about the evolution of people over the course of time and on my blog, so many small world world stories out there. Today’s post is an email from Brent, my Helena Montana weather man that illustrates how small the world is between Montana Belize. Last year Brent and his girlfriend Lisa offered that I could send them a couple of things to bring down on their Belize vacation. They were staying at Banana Beach Resort and happened to be at the martini bar one night and saw Cowboy with his Big Sky trucker hat, which led to Montana talk. A few days later while dropping my portable ipod shuffle player and bikini top off at Grand Caribe, they bought a t-shirt for a friend at the pool Cowboy’s bar and grill and it turns out that random purchase led to a six degrees of separation moment which you can read about below. I am sure it will be further continued at El Divino with Cowboy Doug in May when Brent and Lisa return, looking forward to meeting you both this time around.

Our House
Fully rested after my day off – thanks to the Mystery Blogger for filling in for me to produce yesterday’s edition- I am raring to go to report on week thirteen of our build in Ambergris Caye, Belize. First of all I want to correct an omission from Sunday’s edition. When we visited the build on Saturday we saw the first clear signs of how the clerestory windows will look (OK you have to have a good imagination but …). We are making good ( well we hope that it proves to be good) use of these windows in the living/dining room area and the bedroom on the First Floor and in one of the bedrooms on the Ground Floor. On Saturday, with the forms in place, we could start to see what these windows will look like. Rose and I spent the morning on general chores including a trip to the shops to stock up the cupboards and the refrigerator. We also managed to find a little time to start reviewing the lighting plan for our build in Ambergris Caye, Belize. The plans show this detail but we have the opportunity to finally decide what type of lights, where we want them, how many light switches, where we want them, etc,.These are the next decisions we need to let Daniel Camal, our building contractor, have. We will have this completed for our Friday afternoon meeting with Daniel. In the afternoon we met with Larry and his wife Sandy to show them our house ( OK it is far from being finished but we are already thinking of it as ‘our house’). Larry ( who has been following the blog) and Sandy intend to build a home here and were keen to have a look at our build in Ambergris Caye, Belize and to meet with Daniel.

International Sources

Belize Revisited
“How long do you intend to stay in Belize sir?” “I’m not sure. We thought we’d just play it by ear and see what happens.” “Well, enjoy Belize whatever you do. Welcome to Belize!” Said the Immigration Officer in a strong Caribbean accent as he stamped our passports. We climbed back into the car and left Mexico behind, geographically and culturally. Belize is a different world. Gone is the litter, gone are the packs of dogs (generally) and gone is the everyday struggle to speak a second language. Mexico has been tough. Really tough. To be fair to Mexico it has generally been due to a run of bad luck, rather than Mexico per se. But either way it feels good to be back. Eight years is a long time and it’s difficult to believe it has been that long since we were last here, but the place hasn’t changed much. People still smile and wave as we drive by. Everywhere feels welcoming, easy and laid back. As we left the northern Mexico/Belize border behind we first arrived in sleepy Orange Walk. Most places were closed for Sunday and the streets were empty as we drove around looking for a bank where we could get some Belize dollars. We found both an ATM and a Chinese takeaway. Result! We also later found Marmite in Belize City, panic on the streets at the hands of an over reaction to a few gang member killings and a right rear puncture on the Niva which led to Liz acting as a counter-weigh so I could jack the car up.

Consienten aduanas tráfico de ganado desde Belice
El tráfico de ganado proveniente del vecino país de Belice se encuentra a la alza ante el consentimiento de las autoridades aduanales, aseguró el presidente de la unión de Abastecedores en la capital del estado, Heradio Novelo Castilla. Indicó que ante el excedente de ganado bovino de engorda en aquel país, a ultimas fechas productores locales han manifestado su inconformidad debido a que los transportes beliceños pasan sin ningún “problema” la garita ubicada en Subteniente López. “Estos traficantes, cuando llegan a ser detenidos, es en comunidades rurales del municipio capitalino, por lo que cuestionó; ¿Cómo es que llegan hasta estos puntos sin papeles? si se supone que las autoridades aduanales se los deben pedir”, dijo.

Belice, paraíso del narcotráfico; territorio de Zetas y Maras
El país es utilizado para el trasiego de cocaína, advierte grupo de análisis en Estados Unidos; resaltan la importancia geográfica para el tránsito de mercancía ilícita. Belice, que comparte frontera con México y Guatemala, se ha convertido en territorio dominado por el cártel de Los Zetas y Maras, advierte un reporte de Inter-American Dialogue, de Washington. De acuerdo con el grupo de análisis político e inteligencia, en los últimos 30 años se ha recrudecido el fenómeno del narcotráfico en la pequeña nación centroamericana que se ha transformado en punto importante para el tráfico de cocaína, proveniente de Sudamérica hacia Estados Unidos. Pese a tener una población 43 veces menor que Guatemala o 15 veces inferior al promedio de los países centroamericanos, Belice enfrenta una creciente tasa de homicidios, pandillas, el problema de ser punto importante para el narco y falta de recursos.

Dialogue’s Working Paper: Organized Crime and Insecurity in Belize
Inter-American Dialogue Working Paper. The Inter-American Dialogue is pleased to publish this working paper by Julie López, an independent journalist from Guatemala who covers regional crime and security issues. Our aim is to stimulate a broad and well-informed public debate on complex issues facing analysts, decision makers, and citizens concerned about Latin America’s policy agenda. In this working paper, López offers an in-depth look at the security landscape in Belize, a country too often ignored in regional policy discussions, but one which faces criminal challenges similar to those of its larger Central American neighbors. Combining policy analysis and journalistic accounts based on her recent stint in Belize, López examines the political, social, geographical, and institutional factors that have contributed to Belize’s role as a transit point in the international drug trade. She also discusses the rise of other illicit enterprises, including arms trafficking and human smuggling and looks at the impact of growing gang activity. Finally, López analyzes national policy alternatives being explored in Belize, such as marijuana decriminalization and a state-sponsored gang truce, and the particular challenges the country faces in integrating into the Central American regional security framework.

Local Rotarians to speak at Portugal conference
Rotarians Don Shay and Stephen Lindop have been given the chance to talk about the Leduc and Nisku region in Lisbon, Portugal on June 23-26. Specifically, the two Rotary Club of Nisku Leduc members will talk about the Belize project —a project which helped inspire children to increase their literacy by building playgrounds— which was spearheaded on the local level. “This program has become so effective, it has actually changed the literacy rate in Belize so much so that the government has to build more high schools because people are staying in school,” explained Shay, who is the incoming local president. “The idea is to inspire these small little clubs all over the world to take on larger projects.” The Belize Literacy Program started in 2002 and puts an emphasis on literacy through play, with playgrounds built in Belize as well as local teachers provided with Canadian-style teacher workshops. As a result, the program —which has now been taken on as a Northern Alberta district initiative— has now forced the Belize government to build new high schools due to increased attendance rates.

Belize, Guatemala Foreign Ministers Meet With OAS SG Insulza
Belize Foreign Minister Wilfred Elrington and Guatemala Foreign Minister Luis Fernando Carrera held tripartite talks this weekend with Organization of American States Secretary General Jose Miguel Insulza in Santiago. The objective of the meeting was to exchange information on the tasks both countries will carry out advance of the referenda both countries will be holding in October 2013 on their long-running territorial dispute. During the meeting, which took place during the EU-CELAC Summit, both officials explained the situation in each country and renewed the commitments of their governments to carry out the referenda, according to an OAS statement. Insulza, who was accompanied at the meeting by Ambassador Hugo de Zala, his chief of staff, said the OAS “will continue supporting all efforts made by Belize and Guatemala to comply with the agreements they have reached.”

Still not a convert, but if I ever win a cruise again I won’t turn it down
Belize City: At 9 in the morning, our cruise ship anchors a couple of miles offshore as this former British Honduras city with a tropical monsoon climate disgorges its passengers into tenders for the trip to shore. Tours of the city and environs await, including Mayan ruins near the Belize-Guatemala border. The offshore location is as close as the huge ship could safely approach the shore and a barrier reef that holds it at bay but is a favorite spot for scuba divers. The passengers have until 6 p.m. to get back to the ship or they will be left stranded and desperately waving on the shore. Belize City is not a very big place, with a population of less than 80,000, and is the principal port of the country of Belize. One of its central sources of revenue is the cruise ships. Arriving at nearly the same time, three of them are floating offshore on this day, two of them Carnival ships and one Norwegian. Just past the docks are restaurants, stores and waiting tour guides holding signs proclaiming the names of their tours. Behind the stores are the individual entrepreneurs hawking their wares. Our tour guide tells us they’re a far better source of goods and souvenirs than the stores, and their prices are considerably less.

McCauley, Belize shine brightly at Copa
Deon McCauley has scored goals before - plenty of them. The Belize striker was so prolific in qualifying for the 2014 World Cup that his eleven goals - scored over the course of the first and second rounds -- still lead the region in the run-up to Brazil 2014. But none of those World Cup qualifying goals will have proved more timely or valuable to the nation as a whole than the shot he tapped past Nicaraguan goalkeeper Denis Espinoza, on the final match day in Group A of the 2013 UNCAF Copa Centroamericana. "It felt unbelievable, incredible," McCauley said of the goal. "There aren't words that can express how good it felt to get that goal at that time in the game, it's unbelievable." The goal, which came in second half stoppage time, gave Belize a 2-1 win over Nicaragua - the nation's first-ever victory at the competition after 23 games. Just as importantly, McCauley's strike handed Belize three valuable points. After a tie with Guatemala earlier in the phase, the Jaguars finished as runner-up in Group A, which gave them an automatic berth in the 2013 CONCACAF Gold Cup. The feat qualifies as perhaps the most important in the nation's sporting history.

The Top 5 Photography Tips For Absolute Beginners
Fueled by a desire to take better photos, last year I got myself a nice DSLR for Christmas. I’m certainly no photography expert - but I did take the time learn a few photography tips I could immediately use to take substantially better photos. Some of these tips can be applied to any photo – not just using a DSLR – so even if you have a point and shoot or a camera on your smartphone, then it’s worth reading these. I should stress, these are only for an absolute beginner; if you class yourself as an amateur photographer, you’ll probably laugh. For me, these tips pretty much blew my mind. The Rule of Thirds This really ought to be taught in school, and it’s so ridiculously easy to learn. Essentially, photos will look better if your subject isn’t centered. I know, that may sound totally counter-intuitive, but hear me out.

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