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Today's Belize News: May 26, 2013 #465237
05/26/13 06:18 AM
05/26/13 06:18 AM
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The San Pedro Sun

CG Esthetics presents new toning body wrap: “It Works”
CG Esthetics is now offering the newest botanically- based body contouring treatment that has become quite the rave in Canada. “It Works” is a full line of products that includes body wraps/strips, weight loss supplements and gels that help tone and reduce the appearance of cellulite and skin slackening. The body wraps help detoxify, tighten, tone and firm the skin in as little as 45 minutes. Each wrap costs $65. If you want to have it professionally applied by esthetician Carole Goudreau the cost is $85. The strips can be used on your legs, thighs, belly, arms, chin and neck and even on the face to get firmer, smoother and more youthful looking skin.

Letter to the Editor: Since When Has Discrimination Become Policy?
Belize Institute of Environmental Law and Policy (BELPO) has tried working with the Department of Environment (DOE) and its Chief Environmental Officer, since our mission is “protecting the environment through law”. We have attempted to amicably deal with differences and to collaborate and cooperate with DOE without antagonism. We have had our requests for information ignored. We have been disrespected by members of DOE who have been less than forthcoming with the truth. Now, it appears, the Department is going a step further in trying to ignore our existence. Over the weekend [of May 18th], we heard, from a secondary source, about a training workshop on Multilateral Environmental Agreements (MEAs) being held May 22-24; there was to have been participation from Governmental Ministries and Departments and Non-Governmental Organizations. The notice stated those interested should contact the Chief Environmental Officer, Department of Environment, for more information.

F & S Golf Cart Rentals and Dealership officially inaugurated
After over 20 years of living on the island of Ambergris Caye, San Pedro Town resident Manuel Flores has embarked on yet another business venture. The owner of Dalia’s Store has expanded his enterprise to a Golf Cart Rental and Dealership. Already known for his fair prices and excellent service in the golf cart sales network, Flores now has his own storefront on Marina Drive at the entrance of the DFC Area. Customers can rent or buy a golf cart from F & S (Flores & Sons – Dan and Manuel Jr.). Since opening Dalia’s Store in 1995, Flores has seen his small business grow into a successful model of hard work and dedication, a practice that will continue with his latest venture. Officially inaugurating the new business was Mayor of San Pedro Town Daniel Guerrero. On Friday, May 17th, a group of friends and business acquaintances gathered for the official ribbon cutting. We wish Mr. Flores great success, and acknowledge his enthusiasm in investing further in the town he has chosen to make his home.

Belize dentists embrace Orbit sugar free gum
Government dentists in Belize and other dental workers have welcomed Wrigley’s Orbit sugar free gum as a healthy chewing gum alternative. This initiative came after a presentation made by Orbit and its Belize affiliate Santiago Castillo Group of Company during the Annual Dentist workshop hosted in San Pedro Town. The endorsement came from Doctor Rafael Samos, Senior Dental Surgeon in the Dental Department of the Ministry of Health. Orbit’s mother company Wrigley, with its headquarters in the USA, has been in the chewing gum market since 1982 and over the years have evolved to producing more sugar free chewing gums. Thus Orbit’s re-surfacing in the market in 2001 and is now replacing a Belizean favorite: PK. In fact, Belize, Aruba and Africa were three of the best markets for Wrigley’s PK. However, it is now being replaced in Belize by Orbit, a more healthy sugar free gum.

University of North Georgia students on Study Abroad program on Ambergris Caye
A group of 13 students from the University of North Georgia, USA were on the island as part of a one week visit to Belize. After conducting some work in Belize City, the students visited Ambergris Caye where they collaborated with teachers and students on the island as part of the university’s Study Abroad program. It is the eighth year that Carlise Womack Wynne, who is the Associate Director at the Center for Global Engagement at the University of North Georgia, has been bringing students to Belize. According to Wynne 12 of the student are pursuing a degree in teacher’s education while one is a journalism student pursuing a university degree at the newly merged North George University. “We were working with teacher training, teacher support working one-on-one with students in classrooms in the area of reading, literature, mathematics and also assisted with sports day,” said Wynne about some of the things the education students were engaged in. “Our journalism student worked with a local newspaper in the area of photojournalism. He got to document, through photographs part of the culture of Ambergris Caye. He also got to document the work the education students were doing in the classroom,” added Wynne. In Belize City the teacher’s education major students worked at Unity Presbyterian Primary School while on Ambergris Caye they worked mostly with teachers and students at Holy Cross Anglican Primary School.

ACES’ Joshua Marin wins 8th Annual Reef Week Trivia Contest
Students from the various schools in San Pedro Town and Caye Caulker Village participated in the 8th Annual Trivia Contest as part of the celebrations for Reef Week. The contest started at 9AM on Tuesday, May 21st at the San Pedro Lion’s Den. Competing was a total of ten students from six different schools, including Ambergris Caye Elementary School (ACES), Caye Caulker Roman Catholic School (CCRC), Isla Bonita Elementary School, New Horizon Seventh Day Adventist School, San Pedro Roman Catholic School (SPRC) and The Island Academy. The purpose of the competition is to promote the reef and marine life conservation through education.

Ambergris Today

New Belize-Mexico Bi-national Border Bridge ‘Chactemal’ Opens
The much anticipated Bi-national Border Bridge between Mexico and Belize opened on Wednesday, May 15, 2013. The Mexican Government had dispatched personnel from the Mexican Army to Belize to assist the Belizean government in the construction of a stretch of approximately 500 meters of highway that is located on the Belizean side of the northern border in the Santa Elena area of the Corozal District, connecting the new bridge.

Missing Body Murder Case on The Island
Police Report, San Pedro, Town, Belize - A 26-year-old woman of Boca Del Rio, San Pedro Town reported that sometime around 6:45pm on Sunday, May 19, 2013, she spoke with JEREMY BAPTIST, 25-year-old, Belizean unemployed of Boca Del Rio, San Pedro Town. She stated that at around 7:45pm he left to attend a party at the Campos residence located in the San Juan Area, San Pedro Town. She stated that she and Jeremy Baptist went to a party and returned home at 10:30pm and that was the last time she had heard or seen Jeremy Baptist.

Misc Belizean Sources

New Horizons participates in health care information exchange
Members of New Horizons partnered with Project HOPE and the American Academy of Family Physicians to establish an Advanced Life Support in Obstetrics exchange with health care providers in Dangriga, Belize May 21 and 22. The ALSO program is designed to help physicians, midwives, labor and delivery nurses, and other health care providers develop and maintain the knowledge and skills needed to manage potential emergencies during the perinatal period. “So anytime a mommy is having an emergency in birth, there is a lot of things that can happen,” said Air Force Major (Dr.) Patrick Keller, preventative medicine physician from Lackland Air Force Base. “Understanding how to spot these problems, and understanding how to respond to them appropriately in multiple settings, is what [the program] is all about.

VIDEO: Blue Hole
Hello Divers! If you have ever wondered what it was like to go and see the Great Blue Hole of Belize. Take a look at this quick video. We run out there three times a week and love it! We would like to thank Slightly Stoopid for allowing us to use their track, "Ska Diddy", videographers Marty O'Farrell and Tony Rath, Astrum Helicopter tours of Belize, and most of all our all divers who make showing up to work a joy!

Ka'ana Interactive Map
They have a really well done, interactive map on their site. Ka'ana did a great job.

Showtime at Meluchi's
DJ Crispy's Birthday at Meluchi's was a wild night, and a packed palapa.

SHC Teachers' Day Trip
The Sacred Heart College teachers celebrated Teachers' Day with some zip lining and cave tubing at Nohoch Che'en. It was well deserved, and looks like they had some fun.

Channel 7

Escaped Jaguar Still Prowling, Expert Urges Caution
Tonight, the captive jaguar that escaped in south-western Belize is still on the loose – and 7news has learned that traps have not been deployed yet. The cat is a two to three year old female and the Chief Forest Officer could not tell us exactly when it escaped. But our information says it could be as many as six days ago. This afternoon, Belize’s foremost Jaguar expert Omar Figueroa went to the area in Ringtail Village at mile 40 on the Hummingbird Highway in the Cayo District. Before leaving he discussed the case with us very generally, because at this point, he is just being brought into the picture.

Another Outrage In Vega-ville? DPM’s Nephew Got Paid But Never Paved
Tonight there is another allegation of what has all appearances of fleecing of the public purse, coming out of Orange Walk. This time it involves a relative of the Deputy Prime Minister – who’s also a road builder. The allegation is that Imer Hernandez got paid almost two hundred thousand dollars for a road, which hasn’t been paved. Daniel Ortiz went looking for answers today:.. Daniel Ortiz reporting The San Antonio Road, which ties Orange Walk town with the villages in the western Sections of the Orange Walk District is a very important roadway. Hon. John Briceno - Area Rep., Orange Walk Central "The San Antonio Road borders both constituencies, the Orange Walk Central and the Orange Walk east but it is important to note that the San Antionio Road is a the responsibility of Central Government and the Ministry of Works."

On Thursday KHMH Will Assess Blame
By the middle of next week, the KHMH Board of Governors is expected to pinpoint who – if anyone - is accountable for the dozen baby deaths in the pediatric intensive care unit. It was announced today that a press conference will be held next Thursday to give those answers to the public. That’s what came out of a meeting this morning convened by the Prime Minister, who returned to Belize yesterday. PM Barrow met with the Chairman, Chandra Nisbet Cansino and some members of the Board including the CEO in the Ministry of Health, Peter Allen. An official release says that The Prime Minister was updated on the progress of the investigation. The statement adds that “The PM has committed to assist with any interim arrangements to outsource urgent neonatal cases to private hospitals while the KHMH Unit is being made completely safe by remodeling, expansion and replacement of equipment.”

American Retiree Victim of Sandhill Home Invasion
A 78 year old American retiree was the victim of a home invasion in Sandhill on Wednesday night. Around 7:00, 45 year old Brian Emmanuel was visiting Albert David Reich at his mile 20 home in Sandhill. When Emmanuel left, three Hispanic men held him up – one of them had a gun, and the other two had knives. They took him back to the house where they clubbed him across the head and told him to shout for Reich. Today, Reich told us what happened when he opened the door:… Voice of: Aggravated Burglary Victim "I was just about to go home when I saw a person was hailing the man so I turned back to hail him but when I heard the person calling the man by his name. As he opened the door I was stepping up to his verandah at that same time and at that same time a man came from the back and slapped me on the side of my head with a gun and pushed me inside of the man's house with him." Daniel Ortiz "What did they do and what did they want?" Voice of: Aggravated Burglary Victim "The man asked where the money was and where the chest was."

Charged for Murder Three Months Later
Viewers may remember 38 year-old Ernest Savery, the prison officer who was murdered on February 22, 2013. Well tonight, 24 year-old John Lorencio Martinez, a resident of Corozal, is at prison after he was taken to court on the charge of murder. As we reported, Savery was gunned down at around 10:00 p.m., in the night just a stone’s throw from his home in Ladyville. He was walking out of his gate when his girlfriend tried to warn him that a gunman was attacking. Savery reportedly saw two young men walked up to him and one pulled out a firearm. He rushed towards the man pulling out the gun. They struggled for the gun, but he was fatally shot once in the stomach. Police investigated for 3 months, and they eventually charged Martinez with his murder. He was arraigned this afternoon before the Chief Magistrate who remanded him to prison until June 24.

“GSU Knocked Out My Teeth!”
A young man named Brandon Tillett is missing a front tooth tonight – after he claims the GSU knocked it out yesterday. Tillett works on South Creek doing road works but yesterday he was courting a female in the area. Her boyfriend allegedly claimed that Tillett threatened the young lady – and that’s when the police came in. Without the benefit of his front tooth, Tillett told us what happened next. Brandon Tillett - Teeth knocked out by GSU "I saw a young lady and I was courting her and couple minutes after I saw the GSU rode passed us and they were looking for someone but I didn't think it was me. Then I saw they stopped by where I was and all my workmen were with me because I control my worksite then they took me and told me I was wanted for a robbery. I asked them how I will be wanted for a robbery and I haven't done anything then the man handcuffed me then the other man told him 'don't do him anything here, wait until we reach at our site at Queen St.’ As I reached at Queen St. the man just grabbed my head and stoned my head against the cement wall and kicked me on the ground and the other three of them grabbed me and stoned me on the ground and stamped my face. I noticed my tooth was broken and after that I saw this and I felt unconscious because I felt knocked out. They were teasing me and taking my picture and trying to destroy evidence. They took advantage of me. They tore out the medical form and they told me that they would have let me go but I shouldn't tell anyone anything about what happened. The men in the office were laughing at me and taking picture of my tooth."

Seine Byte Village Councilor Alleges Police Mistreatment
Tonight, a village councilor from Seine Byte Village is alleging that police have taken charge of her property without explanation. Police have their own story, and we’ll get to that, but first to Laverne Arzu. She was just elected to the village council on a UDP slate, but has a grievance going back some months – when she alleges that police took her pickup without authority. She came all the way to Belize City to get her grievance heard in the media today. Laverne Arzu - Villager Councilor, Seine Byte "They didn't come to ask me for who the vehicle belong to, they just came and roughed up my son and beat my son and took away my vehicle - they jumped into my vehicle because it was on March 1st they took it away and I had some documents in there with $500 in there to license, insure and transfer it the same day." Jules Vasquez "But on what grounds did they take your vehicle? What explanation did they give you?" Laverne Arzu "They didn't give me any explanations all that they did was they told my brother that the vehicle was for him, that is mine - personal because my name is on it and I bought it."

UB Responds To Charges
Eight days ago, The University of Belize came under fire from one of its own professors and some of its students. They held a press conference to say that the University was gouging its bachelor’s degree students, first, by not accepting transfer credits, and, second, by charging bachelor’s students more for the same courses, which associates degree students take for less. Today the University released a considered response, and it offers no apologies. The statement says the transfer of credits is based on a “review of course outlines by…course content experts to ensure a minimum of 80%...alignment with the UB syllabus. In cases a course outline does not meet the 80% benchmark, then it is not accepted. The University has committed to digitizing credit transfer process and “if individuals can cite specific cases of inconsistencies in credit transfers, the matter will be investigated on an individual basis.” And about the different grades in charges for courses, the university says that has been the police and it hasn’t changed in many years.

Budding Belizean Biologists
Over the years, we’ve told you about the reef audits, comprehensive reviews of the condition of the reef. But we’ve only seen the finished product, today we found out how it’s done by field biologists. Today we spoke to a group of them before they headed out to Sergeant’s Caye for coral reef monitoring under the umbrella of the healthy reefs initiative: Dr. Melanie McField - Marine Biologist "The point for us is that we do the report card of the health of the reef every other year and we use the data collected by our partner organizations including NGO's and Fisheries Department and the University of Belize. So those are the groups that are here that are doing the training."

GSU Catches Two Hot Weapons
Earlier this week, you saw Roy Bennett complain about GSU harassment. Well, today the GSU sent out a release saying they searched an empty lot adjacent to his home on Gill Street where they found a very hot black Taurus 9mm pistol loaded with a magazine containing 10 live rounds. A black plastic bag was also found next to the pistol containing fifteen live 9mm rounds. No one was in the area and it was labeled as “Found Property”. According to police, the firearm found is believed to have been placed at the area by one of the key members of the Gill Street Gang. An investigation was conducted where it was discovered that the firearm is a service firearm and is part of the Belize Police Department, Belize City inventory. Additional information indicates that the firearm was recently used in a murder incident that occurred in the area. Investigations continue.

FFB Needs Cash For Gold Cup
The 2013 Gold Cup is drawing ever nearer, and the Belize National Team will make football history when it participates and plays against powerhouses such as the US, Costa Rica and Cuba in some of the finest football stadiums in North America. And while that is the end goal, getting there is another thing completely. The problem is that the Football Federation of Belize is in need of hundreds of thousands of dollars to meet all the expenses for the trip to the US. And so they’re taking a page out of the book from the Special Envoy for Women and Children: they’ve planned a football telethon. Today, the President of the FFB told us why you should support the team: Ruperto Vicente - President, FFB "We apologize for not having it earlier because of the logistics and we're also including international partners in this telethon so it's not only here in Belize that this is going to happen. It's going to happen at the same time in Los Angeles, Chicago and New York as well."

Groundbreaking In Time For Village Council ElectionsVillage council elections are in full swing and that has a lot to do with why you’re seeing a hubbub of political activity in various villages. Today it was Crooked Tree – where they’ve been without a police station for years. But village council elections are on Sunday, so what better time for a groundbreaking for a new station? And while it is electioneering, it’s also for the public good, which is one thing the aspiring and outgoing Chairmen could agree on. George Guest - Outgoing Crooked Tree Village Chairman "It's to build a new police station which Crooked Tree has been waiting for for the last six years, I've been rigorously liaising with the police." Reporter "As a resident, a villager of this - how happy are you?"

Channel 5

Prime Minister speaks on neonatal deaths at K.H.M.H. and offers support
One of the biggest and outrageous incidents coming out of the public health system was revealed on Monday. Since then COLA, the Special Envoy for Women and Children and many others including many more grieving parents have come forth expressing their ire on the situation calling for heads to roll. Today, Prime Minister Dean Barrow, [...]

87 year old America national robbed in his house at gunpoint
And while no alert occurred in time to save some of newborns, the neighbor of an elderly American Citizen was prevented from alerting him of the impending danger at his doorstep. No life was lost but a home invasion at gunpoint is one of the most harrowing experiences that can occur to a person.  U.S. [...]

Housekeeper destroys security camera in apartment building; was she planning to commit a heinous crime?
If you fail the first time, then try again. Well the second attempt by a housekeeper had not only been successful but it also cost her a trip to the police department and her job. The building near the stoplight on Vernon Street houses several businesses and apartments. The security cam on Tuesday recorded forty [...]

Deputy Prime Minister refuses interview with reporter
Gaspar Vega – he is the very powerful Deputy Prime Minister and a high-level financier of the United Democratic Party. He is also the man whose name has come up time and time again in scandals, controversies and allegations of corruption. And he has also gained notoriety for an interview given to the media in [...]

Misappropriation of funds in Orange Walk; San Antonio Road funds diverted
 There are more allegations being levied against Deputy Prime Minister Gaspar Vega. This time it’s not about Rosewood or lucrative land scams, but about the alleged misappropriation of funds allocated for road works in Orange Walk. Vega’s nephew, Imer Hernandez, was paid a significant amount of work to pave San Antonio Road in Early 2012, [...]

…Monies used instead to pave Deputy Prime Minister’s street
But all that still hasn’t answered the question – where is the money which was allocated for work on the San Antonio Road? We did some more digging today and that led us to the Ministry of Works in Belmopan.  For payment to be made, the work has to be certified by an engineer from [...]

One man arraigned for murder of former prison officer…
And while the allegation appears to be criminal, it seems that only hard crime gets a suspect arrested. In court today, twenty-four year old John Martinez, accused of killing former prison officer Ernest Savery on February twenty-second, was been charged for murder.  Martinez, who appeared before Chief Magistrate Anne Marie Smith unrepresented, was read a [...]

…While another is committed to stand trial for murder in Supreme Court
Also in court, a Belize City youth was committed today to stand trial for murder in the September session of the Supreme Court. Eighteen year old Paul Martinez is accused of the stabbing murder of Raheem Smith in 2012. And late Thursday evening, when the teenager appeared before Chief Magistrate Anne Marie Smith, his case [...]

Seine Bight Village Councilor tells cops she wants back her pickup truck
And though the troubles of one Seine Bight resident do not involve capital punishment, she’s still screaming bloody murder. Recently, Lavern Arzu was elected to be  part of the Seine Bight Village Council, but the hard working woman says she’s been offended and wronged by the police department in her municipality. Arzu alleges the cops [...]

UB responds to serious concerns of course credit transfer by students
Students of the University of Belize also share the sentiments of the Seine Bight resident, but they want cash from their institution. The UB students have raised some serious concerns with the institution, with the focus on what they call chaos regarding the course credit transfer system and they were also very critical about the [...]

OCEANA sells $800,000 trawler to Placencia Coop for $1
The United Nations Secretary General reported in 2006 that ninety five percent of damage to seamount ecosystems worldwide is caused by deep sea bottom trawling.  And that is why five years later, Oceana Belize bought two trawlers at a cost of eight hundred thousand dollars. The non-governmental organization ushered in the age of a ban [...]

Sugar barge drifts to beach
And while the trawlers move from dragging along the coastline to non-destructive productivity for the Placencia Coop., the same can’t be said for the sugar barge that is often seen slowly drudging along the Belize City Harbor. The rope from the rusty sugar barge broke from the barge that was tugging it earlier today. And [...]

Monitoring the barrier reef; training held for environmentalists
And about a hundred yards away as the barge was making its way from the shoreline, a group of over a dozen environmentalists were returning from an intensive training that would help them to monitor the Barrier reef and fragile offshore ecosystems. It was the collaboration of the Fisheries Department, CZMAI, The Toledo Institute for [...]

2013 conch season closes 1 month earlier
The 2013 conch season, which usually expires at the end of June has been closed a month earlier.  The harvest for this year, approximately a million pounds of crustacean meat, has been realized across all five fishing cooperatives.  A notice has since been made public for fisher-folks who are still at sea, as well as [...]

Former Guatemalan President extradited to the US to face money laundering charges
Former Guatemalan president Alfonso Portillo was flown out of the country en route to the United States today, less than a week after his predecessor, dictator Efrain Rios Montt’s conviction for genocide was thrown out.  Portillo’s extradition is a result of charges he laundered seventy million dollars from U.S. banks during his term in office.  [...]

Halo in the sky
While the fortunes of two of Guatemala’s former presidents have plunged into darkness, life has been brighter for us here in neighboring Belize. If you are someone who had your head in the clouds or were looking into the skies around midday today, you would have noticed what appeared to be a ring around the [...]

2nd Annual National Inspiration Telethon to be held on June 1st
If you didn’t find artistry or mental stimulation by the halo, perhaps you will find inspiration in the second annual national Inspiration Telethon.   Under the auspices of the Special Envoy for Women and Children, Kim Simplis Barrow and CARE-Belize, the telethon will be held at the Bliss Center for the Performing Arts on June first. [...]


Office of PM, Ministries of Works and Local Government Are Silent On Monies Paid Out For Job Undone
Yesterday we told you about rehabilitation of two roads in Orange Walk that should have been completed by now but haven’t. While Director of Projects in the Ministry of Works, Deon Pascascio explained that it was a matter of modification in the contracts that held back the project, it...

Love FM's CEO Selected as District Governor for Rotary
A new District Governor has been selected for the Rotary year 2015-2016 for Belize, Honduras and Guatemala. Past President, Rene Villanueva Senior was unanimously among all the countries to run the Rotary’s administrative role for that year. Today, Chairman of the Belize Rotary ...

Belizeans Witness Halo In The Sky
If you had a chance to look up at the skies this morning, you will notice what appears to be a rainbow around the sun. The phenomenon is drawing the attention of the public and even the social media is overwhelmed with pictures and comments. And while many may be wondering what it is ...

Prime Minister of Belize Returns Home and Updated on Situation In Neonatal Unit
Three days ago, the KHMH sent out a press release that shocked the country: twelve neonatal deaths were recorded in its Neonatal Intensive Care Unit from an outbreak of a bacterium called Enderobacter Cloacae. An investigation has been launched by the Quality Assurance Unit and it is expected the...

Guyanese Minister Ends Working Visit in Belize
The Minister of Agriculture from Guyana is in Belize on a working visit. We hear more in this report from Arturo Cantun. ARTURO CANTUN “Guyanese Minister of Agriculture, Dr. Leslie Ramsammey is in the country as at Wednesday. Ramsey spoke briefly to Love News this mornin...

Annual Cancer Walk for Belize District Set For The Next Sunrise
This month is being observed as Cancer Month and one of the signatures activities of the cancer society is the annual cancer walk that is held in every district. The Belize District will hold its cancer walk tomorrow early in the morning. Public Relations Officer of the Belize Cancer Society, Dae...

ET Arraigned on Charges of Robbery Among Others
Forty-five year old Basil Willis, a.k.a. “ET”, was arraigned on charges of robbery, wounding and handling stolen goods when he appeared in court today. Willis pled not guilty to robbery and wounding but guilty to handling stolen goods. Although he has a long rap sheet, Magistrate Dale...

Wood Carver of Northern Belize Faces Murder Charge
Twenty-four year old John Martinez, a wood carver of Corozal Town, has been charged with the murder of Ernest “Seedy” Savery. Martinez was arraigned today. He was remanded until June 24. Savery, who resided in Ladyville, was shot and killed on February 22, 2013. He had just exit...

Public Service Information Day Celebrated in Northern Belize
Public Officers in Orange Walk are observing public service information day as we hear in this report from Dalila Ical. DALILA ICAL “Throughout the country government departments have been holding Public Service Information Day in May. The event leads to International Public Service...

Canada and St. Lucia Facilitate Workshop With Environmentalists in Belize
For the next three days environmentalists are meeting for a national workshop at the Belize Biltmore Plaza Hotel to review the existing Environmental Conventions that Belize has signed onto. The focus of that review is to see how best they can merge portions of those existing Conventions to...


Funds For San Antonio Road Diverted To Clarke Street Where The DPM Lives
Tonight residents of San Antonio Road in Orange Walk are demanding answers from Government particularly the Ministry of Works. They want to know why is it that their road has not been fixed when a large sum of funds has been paid out for the upgrading of the road. CTV3 News received documents of what appear to be irregularities in the ministry itself. The documents show that back in 2012 the Ministry of Works paid out $179,951.55 to Imer Hernandez Development Company Limited. Now, if the name rings a bell, that is because Imer Hernandez is the nephew of Deputy Prime Minister Gaspar Vega. He is the same individual that the previous town council, under the helms of Philip De La Fuente, paid $50,000 to as a partial payment for the rehabilitation of San Antonio Road. At a total cost of $351,000, Hernandez’s company was to pave 0.70 miles of San Antonio Road which stretches from the Orange Walk Fire Station to the outskirts of Orange Walk Town before entering Yo Creek Road. The $50,000 payment was made on January 31st 2012. The documents we received show, that less than one month after the $50,000 partial payment was made by the town council, the Ministry of Works paid out a whopping $179,951.55 to Imer Hernandez Development Company Limited for the rehabilitation of San Antonio Road which to date the facelift is pending. When the news broke out last night residents were taken by surprise and today when we revisited the area, they laid out their demands.

Brother And Sister Detained For Assaulting A Police Officer
A man is under arrest along with his sister after he reportedly punched a police officer when he was being detained. On May 22nd a police officer attached to Orange Walk Police formation was heading to work when his attention was drawn to one Lorenzo Martinez, Belizean laborer of Chula Vista Area Corozal Town, who was walking along with his sister, Gloria Martinez, Belizean domestic also of Chula Vista Corozal Town. The Police officer approached Martinez and informed him that he is wanted for the crime of theft and that he was being placed under arrest. Martinez then reportedly punched the officer and a struggle ensued. Gloria Martinez then held on to the police officer as she reportedly stated that the police will not arrest her brother. The officer called for backup and as a result both persons were arrested and escorted to the Orange Walk Police Station pending charges.

Illegal Weapons Found By Orange Walk Police
Tonight, Police are seeking assistance from the community to find out who is the owner or owners of illegal magazines, ballistic armour, and blank firing attachments for M-16 rifle that were found today. A team of police officers were on patrol and visited Juventus Street in the Pasadita Area of Orange Walk Town. A search was conducted on the area which led to the discovery of six (6) empty magazines for 5.56mm rounds, one (1) ballistic armour and (1) blank firing attachment for M-16 rifle. No one was found in the area and the items were labeled as found property.

Guatemala Wants The Opposition To Take A Stance On The ICJ
During the his quarterly press conference held a few weeks ago, the Prime Minister of Belize revealed that there will be no Belize Guatemala Referendum on October 6th 2013 to take Guatemala’s unfounded claim to the International Court of Justice. During a meeting held at the headquarters of the Organization of American States in Washington D.C, Guatemala officially informed the OAS and Belize of its decision to withdraw from the initial agreement to hold the simultaneous referendum on October sixth. A few weeks later, Guatemala’s Foreign Minister Fernando Carrera expressed to the Secretary General of the OAS Miguel Insulsa, that his country does want to take its claim to the ICJ and that they intend to keep the Special Agreement signed in 2008 intact. All indications are that there is a one time window of opportunity for the simultaneous referendum to take place in 2014. If both countries can’t agree on the proposed new date, the referendum may be delayed for an indefinite period, according to Minister of Foreign Affairs, Hon. Wilfred Elrington.

Public Service Information Day Hosted In Orange Walk
Public Service week will be observed in June, with several activities to mark the occasion celebrated under the theme “As Agents of Change – Public Officers Build, Transform, Create, and Deliver Quality Service”. But before that, government departments today hosted students and the general public at the Barracks here in Orange Walk for Public Service Information Day. The aim of the event which is celebrated countrywide is to educate visitors on the services that are provided by the different government departments. Despite this mornings inclement weather Orange Walkenos came out in numbers eager to learn more about the Public Services and the important role it plays in the development of the country. And just as eager to disseminate the information were members of the Immigration Department, Post Office, Human Rights, Ministry of Education, the Forest Department and even the Minister of Public Service and Elections and Boundaries, Hon. Charles Gibson.

Nahil Mayab And Panecia Restaurants Recognised By TripAdvisor
Tonight we are exultant to announce that two establishments from Orange Walk Town, namely Nahil Mayab and Panecia were bestowed an award by TripAdvisor in its 2013 Tripadvisor certificate of excellence. The Certificate of Excellence award is given to outstanding hospitality businesses that have received praise and recognition in reviews by TripAdvisor Travellers. Winners of the award range from one-room bed and breakfasts to 6,000-room hotels, from bakeries to Michelin star restaurants and hidden attractions to world-renowned parks and museums. TripAdvisor is the world's largest travel site, enabling travelers to plan and have the perfect trip. TripAdvisor offers trusted advice from real travelers and a wide variety of travel choices and planning features with seamless links to booking tools. TripAdvisor branded sites make up the largest travel community in the world, with more than 200 million unique monthly visitors.

Is UB Offering Affordable Education To Students?
Tertiary level education is seemingly high here in Belize and often at times, students do not have the resources to even contemplate pursuing further education. As the leading tertiary level institution, the University of Belize is also facing problems of its own. The issue of credit transfers has been for so long discussed by the ATLIB members and the University in which an agreement has been made. In reference to the agreement, it states that if 80 % of the course offered at a junior college level matches that of the university’s course, then UB should accept the credits. That however, has not been happening and in several instances, students have been obliged to take the same course over at UB if they would like to pursue a bachelor’s degree at the institution. In addition, students are charged the price of a bachelor’s course but yet they take an associate’s level course. Professor Patrick Menzies is an instructor in the Information Systems Department at the University of Belize. He is confident that if students and parents unite there could be a change at the institution. In a case study conducted by students of Menzies classes, alarming if not astounding irregularities in the university’s financial records were uncovered and today, he brought them out to light.

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More News: Scroll up from here


EUROPEAN UNION *Europe’s top human rights court ruled that equality laws and safety concerns trumped religious freedom in three cases where British Christians were sacked or sanctioned for expressing their beliefs at work. (January 2013). *European Parliament published the brochure, which recommended not to use the words ‘Missus’ and...

Investigations continue into KHMH baby deaths
This morning, on his return to the country, Prime Minister Barrow met with the Chairman, members of the KHMH and the CEO in the Ministry of Health, where he was briefed on the recent deaths of a dozen newborns at the hospital’s NICU. He was also updated on the...

Brandon Tillett alleges Police brutality
Competing for the interest of the fairer sex has been the downfall of many a man, but Brandon Tillett’s mistake was to go after a young woman who had an ear in to the Gang Suppression Unit (GSU). We spoke to him to today. Brandon Tillett – Alleged Victim...

Article by Audrey Matura Shepherd lands her in UNIBAM Lawyer’s crosshairs
All over the world, Christians and those who support traditional marriage are being harassed, intimidated, fired, sued, fined, and even imprisoned for their personal beliefs. With the legalization of homosexuality come anti-discriminatory laws which equate biblical teaching on homosexuality as ‘hate speech”. Belize is just at the beginning of...

Telethon to raise funds for National Football team to attend Gold Cup
They have made history, now the Belize National A Football Team wants to keep it going all the way to gold – the CONCACAF Gold Cup in the United States in July. After being twice postponed, a national telethon is scheduled for midway in June, as FFB President Ruperto...

UB responds to accusations of botched up credit transfers
Last week, adjunct professor of the University of Belize Patrick Menzies, along with students of his Management Information course, released the findings of a study they conducted on the transfer of credits and tuition assessment administered by the university. The claim that the school has been overseeing misinformation and...

Woman returns home after going missing in Belmopan
A woman went missing from the Western Regional Hospital on Tuesday. The woman’s husband, who resides in St. Margaret Village, told Police that on Tuesday, he took his wife to the hospital. She reportedly went to the emergency ward of the hospital and a short while after, her husband...

Police report numerous hold-ups in Belize District
There have been numerous reports of hold-ups, particularly in the Belize district for this past week. Thankfully, the victims have all escaped unhurt; nonetheless, they have lost valuable and costly possessions. The previous victims were mostly women, but on Wednesday, two men were held up at gunpoint in the...

NTUCB calls for defense of this land and its resources
The National Trade Union Congress of Belize is the most recent body to come out swinging against the managing of the country’s resources. The NTUCB, in a press release issued this week says that it is “Scandalous but also tremendously and utterly outrageous that we have witnessed; first the...

Rowan Garel to dive Blue Hole for charity
His exploits have attracted much attention in recent years – from scaling the Victoria Peak to walking across Belize in five days, all in an effort to raise funds for the Belize Council for the Visually Impaired (BCVI)’s programs for student rehabilitation. Now, 14 year old Belize High School...

Matron Roberts Polyclinic hosts health and wellness fair
Under the theme “Your Health, Your Life, Act Now!” various health partners including HECOPAB and the Central Health Region joined with the Matron Roberts Polyclinic on Magazine Road to host today a health and wellness fair. Participants include the Kidney, Diabetes and Mental Health Associations, as well as Crimestoppers...

Meteorologist explains halo around Sun
This morning PLUS News observed a ring around the morning sun. We were curious as to what it was and decided to call the Meteorological Office in Ladyville to find out. Forecaster Frank Tench confirmed that what we saw was a naturally-occurring halo, a result of the sun passing...

Caye Caulker Chronicles

Slates & Independents running in the Village Council election on June 16th

Presenting the Miss Lobster Fest contestants…

Little Stars Preschool Open Day
Little Stars Preschool held their Open Day today 24th May 2013, showcasing what the Children learn throughout the school year. There were different sections displaying different subjects and learning techniques. Principal Ms. Vanina Sosa and teacher Mr. Edir Sosa along with the help of parents did an excellent job with the setting up and displaying of all the learning areas. The kids had a blast doing art, playing music, reading, counting learning about plants, animals and much more.


Belize Action says the move is a dangerous shift by Barrow administration. The Rome Statute of the International Criminal Court says: “…it is understood that the term ‘gender’ refers to the two sexes, male and female, within the context of society. The term ‘gender’ does not indicate any meaning different from the above.” Cabinet Secretary Carlos Perdomo confirmed to Amandala today that Cabinet, the central policy-making arm of government, has “endorsed 100%” the new gender policy, 2013, which revises and updates the first policy published by the Government of Belize in 2002, and which now states, under its “guiding principles” that the “respect for diversity” extends to “persons of all ages who come from diverse races, cultures, ethnicities, faiths, sexual orientations, socio-economic situations and behavioral lifestyles… [Emphasis ours]”

A crocodile was captured in the drain on Castle Street about 20 yards from Victoria Street. It was about 8 ½ feet long, spanned about two and a half feet in width, and weighed about 250 pounds. The animal was taken out of the drain about 6:30 this morning by two men, who placed it in a nearby yard until police arrived. The police came shortly after and took it away. No one was hurt in the process of capturing the crocodile, and the crocodile itself was not harmed. Cornelio Day, a resident of the area, reported to Amandala that two men who were walking on Castle Street saw the animal in the drain. They quickly jumped onto it, tied its mouth, pulled it out of the drain and tugged it into a yard, where they held it until the police came.

Hospital CEO said he learned of the 12 infant deaths “through the media;” 7 deaths due to bacteria and 5 due to “premature-related issues”. When one mother loses her infant child in a hospital unnecessarily, it is a tragedy; when twelve mothers lose their babies, it is a catastrophe of mammoth proportions. The collective pain and heartbreak is beyond measure. Within the first 20 days of this month, there have been 12 neonatal deaths at the Karl Heusner Memorial Hospital (KHMH) Neonatal Intensive Care Unit (NICU) in Belize City, and the hospital’s Chief Executive Officer Dr. Francis Gary Longsworth, said in a press conference yesterday, Wednesday, that he only became aware of the situation after parents of one of the deceased babies went to the media with their concerns. At the press conference, Longsworth, Chairlady of the Board of Governors Chandra Nisbet Cansino, and Chief of Medical Staff Dr. Adrian Coye addressed the situation – 7 deaths by bacterial infection, and 5 from prematurity-related issues. We were told that internal investigations into the matter started immediately after the deaths in the NICU began.

Jose Cruz, 53, was fined a total of $8,735 for illegal possession of conch and lobster on Wednesday, May 22, 2013 in the Belize City Magistrate’s Court. Fisheries officials on patrol on Tuesday, May 14, conducted a search for illegal marine products on Cruz’s boat, Giana, in the Belize City harbor. Cruz had in his possession 85 lobster tails and 240 conchs. They found, in the bow of the boat, a kit bag containing a black plastic bag with what appeared to be lobster tails. Also found in the bow was a knapsack containing two plastic bags with suspected undersized conchs amidst some clothing. A T-shirt in the bag was wrapped around plastic bags containing more conchs. In the stern of the boat were two aluminum pots with a plastic bag containing both lobster and suspected undersized conchs. Both lobsters and conchs were found inside a small bucket in the stern. In the mid-area of the boat, lobsters were found wrapped in two jeans pants.

Game 2 in the Belmopan City Council Kids and Youth Cups 2013 semifinal home-and-away series were held over the past weekend, with the Kids Cup semifinals on Saturday, May 18, and the Youth Cup semifinals on Sunday, May 19, at the Isidoro Beaton Stadium. Kids Cup semifinals results In the first Kids Cup semifinal game on Saturday, May 18, Real Madrid – Mountain View crushed Manchester City – Armenia, 4-0, with 1 goal from Kendale Nunez (37’) and a hat trick (3) from Tahj Reid (42’, 49’ & 51’). (Real Madrid had also won the previous week’s encounter by a 2-1 score, so they are through to the finals.) In the nightcap, it was Barcelona – Site 7 also registering a 4-0 victory over Manchester United – San Martin, with goals from Devin Nunez (12’), Tyzae Carr (15’ & 50’) and Jahlin Pelayo (55’). (In their previous meeting, Barcelona – Site 7 had won, 1-nil, so they are also going to the finals.)

The Football Federation of Belize (FFB) U-17 Women’s Team will be travelling to Guatemala on Thursday, May 23. The females will be participating in the Qualifying Round for the UNCAF U-17 games against Guatemala on Sunday, May 26, in Antigua, Guatemala at 3:00 p.m. The return match will be held on Sunday, June 2, in Belize at the FFB Stadium in Belmopan at 4:00 p.m. The young ladies participating are: Sabrina Eiley (Independence High School), Brithney Drysdale (Independence High School), Torrie Vernon (Indepedence High School), Naomi Gamboa (Delille Academy), Abigail Ramos (Our Lady of Guadelupe High School), Leinny Jones (Sacred Heart College), Luannie Castillo (Sacred Heart College), Erica Mulligan (Wesley College), Jayelle Young (Saint Catherine Academy), Julia Arzu (Saint Catherine Academy), Shandy Vernon (Nazerene High School), Sophia Diego (Saint Catherine Academy), Jacqueline Riveroll (Ocean Academy), Marissa Cervantes (Muffles College), Gisel Baeza (Orange Walk Technical High School), Lucreshia Underwood (Bishop Martin High School), Ana Mendoza (Corozal Community College), and Kiliah McNeil (Saint Catherine Academy).

The areas which experts examine in a society to assess that society’s level of progress or development, are housing, health, education, infrastructure, and so on. Health is always an area of primary concern, and it is an area where the serious inequality among citizens in certain societies can be exposed in dramatic and traumatic ways. One of the key measuring sticks of a nation’s health system is its infant mortality rate. The fact that the Cuban Revolution has reduced Cuba’s infant mortality rate to one of the absolute lowest in the world, is an undeniable badge of honor for that Revolution. There are people like the American government and the Cuban exiles who condemn the Cuban government as a communist dictatorship. But those Cuban parents who benefit from Cuba’s free, yet world-class, health care system no doubt have a different perspective. Recent negative developments where Belize’s infant mortality rate are concerned, expose the fact that our democratic, free market system of politics and economics is failing where health care for the masses of the Belizean people is concerned. For several months the nation had been hearing of infant mortality problems in Orange Walk Town’s Northern Regional Hospital, but the cases were individual, and Orange Walk Town is not a media and population center. When news broke this week of multiple infant mortalities, a veritable cluster in fact, at the largest public hospital in the nation, Belize City’s Karl Heusner Memorial Hospital, public reaction has been near panic.

Younger generations of Belizeans know, I assume, that they have potential political power in their hands, but they are not sure how to convert potential power into real power. Worse, they are not even sure they really want to acquire that political power, because they have been programmed to consider electoral politics to be dirty and dishonest, and to stay away from it if they want to remain pure and principled. Some younger Belizeans, moreover, are intimidated by the street and media power of the ruling UDP and the Opposition PUP, and they do not want to be publicly humiliated and scandalized. Those younger Belizeans who have participated in the various third party and activist initiatives we have seen in Belize over the last decade or so, have seen for themselves how important money and other material resources are once you enter the public arena. The experiences they have had may have tended to sober them more than inspire them. The bottom line is, nevertheless, that Belize is a participatory democracy. There are free and fair elections, so that if you seriously believe that something needs to be changed, and if you believe that the PUDP are jointly opposed to that change, then you do not have to make violent revolution. You can organize peacefully to acquire a mandate from the Belizean people to make that change. No one’s going to torture or murder you in Belize as they do in military dictatorships.

Dear Editor, I read with great concern the article “The Tort of Misfeasance and the State’s Right to Sue Public Officials,” reproduced on pg. 39 of the Sunday, May 19 edition of the Amandala. I say concern because if one were to follow this case from its inception in 2009 to its conclusion in February 2013, one would get a better understanding of the abuse of state power and how to address it. Both CJ Conteh and the two senior judges of the CCJ adjudged that the tort of misfeasance is a legal tool for aggrieved citizens to use against the abuse of state power and not for the Attorney General to use against citizens. They both cautioned against the abuse of the tort by the Attorney General, particularly in jurisdictions where the Attorney General is also a politician. Nevertheless, the Attorney General was given the go ahead to prove his claim in the court of the Hon. Chief Justice Kenneth Benjamin.

Dear Editor, I am Jacklin Marroquin, originally from a village known as Valley of Peace in the Cayo District. Early May 2012, I learned that I was pregnant, and while the baby was never planned, the thought of having a child both frightened me, and thrilled me. It frightened me because at that time I was unemployed, and with little savings which I had accumulated over a two-year period, particularly for that, “the baby’s fund.” However, the idea of having a child also comforted me, as my greatest wish had always been to have a child. Nonetheless, in my mind I had always wanted to have everything perfect and ready for the time a child came, thus the reason why I kept putting a child off. Now I realize that if I had kept waiting until everything was in place, then I might have never really been ready for a child; something would have always been missing.

Dear Editor, BELPO has tried working with the Department of Environment (DOE) and its Chief Environmental Officer, since our mission is “protecting the environment through law.” We have attempted to amicably deal with differences and to collaborate and cooperate with DOE without antagonism. We have had our requests for information ignored. We have been disrespected by members of DOE who have been less than forthcoming with the truth. Now, it appears, the Department is going a step further in trying to ignore our existence. Over the weekend, we heard, from a secondary source, about a training workshop on Multilateral Environmental Agreements (MEAs) to be held May 22-24; there is to be participation from Governmental Ministries and Departments and Non-Governmental Organizations. The notice stated those interested should contact the Chief Environmental Officer, Department of Environment, for more information.

by Major Lloyd Jones (Ret’d) Dear Editor, The Commissioner of Police (ComPol) occupies an extremely important post in our fledgling democracy, as he and he alone drives our internal security apparatus. It is through the ComPol that the State exercises its monopoly on the use of force and the right to deprive citizens of their liberty on the grounds of national security. Plainly put, the ComPol wields extraordinary powers! History has taught us, however, that if a democracy is to survive, one imbued with such powers must exercise it judiciously and independently. Earlier this month the immediate former ComPol, David Henderson, was seen campaigning for the UDP in Unitedville for the village council elections – a mere four months after leaving the office of ComPol. In the circumstances it is not unreasonable to draw the conclusion that Henderson was a UDP Commissioner. If one draws such a conclusion, two obvious questions emerge (1) was David Henderson judicious and independent in the exercise of his office as ComPol? And (2) can David Henderson exercise the functions of the office of Director of the National Forensic Service with the professionalism and independence that such office demands?

There was an abrupt cancellation of summer classes at St. John’s College Junior College on Tuesday, May 21, 2013. The reason for cancelling classes was that enough students did not pay for their courses. We were told by a few students that only 50 out of about 400 students had paid for the summer sessions. We spoke to a few students who were registered for the summer session. One of them told us they were informed that classes would be cancelled while classes were in session on Tuesday, which was to be the first day of the summer session. A first-year student told us that a teacher walked into the classroom and made the announcement, but the lecturer carried on with the lesson because it was thought that the announcement meant classes would be cancelled for that day only. The student said that the teacher returned and repeated her announcement, emphasizing that it meant classes were cancelled for the entire summer semester.

Official information provided to the press by the Forest Department indicates that from April 11 to 26, 2013, a total of $185,111.40 was paid in royalties to the Government of Belize by several vendors from places like Columbia Village, Trio Village, Deep River, Mafredi, Boom Creek Village, Benque Viejo, Midway Village, Jacintoville, and Eldridge Ville for rosewood harvested during the period of amnesty. At the time of the report, royalty payment of about $25,000 to the government was pending for 47,000 board feet from the villages of Santa Teresa and Boom Creek. The tallied payments were for roughly 125,000 board feet of rosewood which were declared to the Forest Department back in April. The inventory awaiting exportation also includes 150,000 board-feet which the Department reports were obtained from Millroom Lumber Yard Ltd., but because the volume was assessed before the moratorium, they are listed for shipment purposes only. Chief Forest Officer Wilber Sabido said that royalty has already been received for this batch of rosewood.

Two vehicles, with a combined value of $96,000, were stolen in two days –both from women. The Mazda Tribute of the executive director of the Women Department, Ann-Marie Williams – a vehicle valued at about $16,000, was stolen at about 11:00 p.m. on Saturday, and two days later, a Toyota Hilux 2012, valued at $80,000 was stolen at about 7:30 p.m. yesterday from the Director of Hofius Limited, Jacklyn Roe. Williams’ vehicle was stolen on Durgeon Drive, in the Buttonwood Bay area. She told police that about 11:00 p.m. on Saturday, she drove up to her home and entered her yard, which is unfenced, and as she was getting out of her vehicle to go into her house, two men came out of the shadows, one of whom was armed with a club. They approached her and demanded her vehicle keys. She told police that both of them had hoods over their heads, which prevented her from getting a look at their faces. The one with the club in his hand held it in an upward position, as if to hit her if she did not comply.

MOU signed in February now in effect. Back in February, Minister of Tourism and Culture Manuel Heredia, Jr., signed a memorandum of understanding with US Ambassador to Belize, HE Vinai K. Thummalapally, for the protection of Belizean archaeological and ethnological objects, by ensuring that objects that are taken to the US would be confiscated and returned to Belizean authorities. Archaeological Commissioner Dr. Jaime Awe has indicated to Amandala that items are already being returned to Belize, under the terms of the MOU. One Maya vessel has been returned, and two other artifacts are being returned through the work of the US Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI). At the time the MOU was signed, Awe told Amandala that Belizean artifacts were also being sold on e-bay. We did a search and came across one item which was marked “sold”; and another, a Maya jar, being sold for US$100, supposedly from a seller in New Mexico, USA. Awe said that the eBay sale was illegal, because ownership is vested in state. Dr. Awe told us that his institute is working with authorities in the US to try to reclaim that object from the New Mexico seller.

The Reporter

he destruction of Noh Mul, the northernmost Mayan city of old in the Orange Walk District, is not only a cultural disaster. It is a sacrilege! The mushroom remnant of the main pyramid is not only an ugly scar upon the landscape. It is also a scar on the social [...]

Twelve newborns die at KHMH in one week, Hospital says bacteria is to blame for more than half
Twelve newborn babies died at the Karl Heusner Memorial Hospital within a one-week period, and the hospital’s higher ups say a bacteria is to blame. At a late Wednesday evening press conference and while tests and investigations continued to be processed, KHMH’s Director of Medical Services, Dr. Adrian Coye, revealed [...]

Past CEO: something ‘amiss’ at KHMH
The authorities at the Karl Heusner Memorial Hospital said Wednesday that half of the recent neonatal deaths was due to an infection, but former KHMH CEO, Dr. Alvaro Rosado, blames an apparent breakdown in communication at the hospital.

Retiring Deputy Director of Health Services grinds GOB
In her speech at the National Nursing Conference, Dr. Marjorie Parks, retiring deputy director of health services and Chief Nursing Officer, chided the government for interfering with the nursing profession.

A.G. vs Bar President in court
Though neither man was there in his professional capacity, it was Attorney General of Belize Wilfred Elrington squaring off with President of the Bar Association Eamon Courtenay in the Supreme Court on Tuesday. The matter is personal and private.

Guatemalan Constitutional court voids Rios Montt genocide conviction
On Monday, Guatemala’s Constitutional Court overturned the “genocide and crimes against humanity” conviction of former military dictator Efrain Rios Montt, 86. Montt was convicted on May 10, and sentenced to 80 years in prison.

Stabbed BDF officer recovering
Warrant Officer Andre Gabb, 45, of the Belize Defence Force, is still weak but on the road to recovery at the Queen Elizabeth hospital in Bridgetown, Barbados, after an angry microbus driver stabbed him in the heart in the Black Rock area two miles north of Bridgetown, the capital of [...]

Belizean Joseph Budna sentenced to 25 years in Guatemala court
Belizean freelance reporter, Joseph Budna, 33, has been found guilty on a charge of kidnapping by a Guatemala court and sentenced to 25 years in prison on Friday, May 10. It is not known at this time if Budna, who is facing additional charges, including extortion, will appeal the sentence.

Executive Director National Women’s Commission car-jacked
Ann-Marie Williams, Executive Director of the National Women’s Commission and front-runner for the Women in Politics initiative, was car jacked last Saturday night. Williams was held up in the driveway of her home on Durgeon Drive, in West Landivar as she was parking her grey 2003 Mazda Tribute. She reported [...]

Hofius manager, Jackie Roe 2012 Toyota Hilux jacked
Two men car jacked the manager of Hofius Belize Limited, Jacqueline Roe, Monday night, as she was leaving the Great House parking lot on Cork Street, Belize City. Reports say that the men, who were dressed in dark clothes, suddenly walked up to her and held her at knife point.

Brazilian judicial council orders notaries to recognize same-sex marriage
The Brazilian National Council of Justice, which oversees the nation’s judiciary, passed a resolution Tuesday that denies notaries the right to refuse to perform same-sex marriages. In Brazil, notaries officiate marriages and civil unions.

Cameron condemns hacking death. Says Britain stands firm
A gruesome cleaver attack on a British soldier left London reeling Thursday, as Britain grappled with questions over who was responsible and whether Islamist extremism was to blame. The scene revealed through cell phone camera footage and witness accounts Wednesday was bloody, and for many hard to believe.

Bras make breasts sag, says 15 year study
Wearing a bra does more harm than good – it does nothing to reduce back pain and weakens the muscles that hold up the breasts, resulting in greater breast sagging, Jean-Denis Rouillon, a sports science expert from the University of Besançon, France, reported after a 15-year study.

Police wins first Premier League final
Three times bridesmaids, the Police United set themselves on the good footing to win their first national championship when they triumphed 1-0 over FC Belize in the first game of the championship finals of 2013 Premier League of Belize football tournament at the MCC grounds on Sunday, May 19.

Belize Telemedia whops Lady Rebels 10-1 in Belize City softball
The Belize Telemedia softball women walloped the Mirage Lady Rebels 10-1 to win by mercy rule in five innings when the Belize City women’s softball competition continued at the Roger’s Station. Telemedia scored 10 runs on 11 hits and they led 2-0 when catcher Erlene Belisle and pitcher Mary Flowers [...]

The Belize Times

OUTRAGE! – 12 babies die at KHMH
Twelve innocent babies are dead. It is the latest outrage in an ongoing list of major scandals unfolding under the UDP government. As the scandal broke this week, Prime Minister Barrow hopped on a plane and left the country. He left his Deputy Gaspar Vega in charge! All twelve babies died at the Karl Heusner Memorial Hospital KHMH over a period of twenty days this month. These deaths did not happen from a single fire or a collapsed building. The babies died one after the other from negligence of the worse kind. The official explanation is a virus or bacteria. More likely unsanitary conditions and inadequate medication appear to be the cause of the deaths.

Troubled Cop?
A disturbing photograph of a Police Officer pointing a gun to his own head has prompted the Police Department to launch a serious investigation into the circumstances that led to such a dramatic act. The photo revealed ...

Barrow’s “National Bank” can “acquire”/“take over” property of “any other bank”
The UDP’s latest political gimmick called a National Bank is bound to raise concerns in the private and banking sector. This bank is already being stuffed with known UDP cronies. The bank, registered as a private/public ...

Did a bug kill Baby Jade in December 2012? – Premature child died 12 days after birth from a mysterious infection at KHMH
The shocking news of 12 babies dying at the Karl Heusner Memorial Hospital from a mysterious infection in a span of 20 days in May has caused more cases of strange baby deaths at the public ...

Running Roughshod over Belize
By G. Michael Reid As a small child, I remember spending a couple of school vacations way back in the jungle area of Mountain Pine Ridge. There was a family of white people who lived directly in front of where we lived in Belize City. The patriarch was a tall, burly ...

Killing Us Prematurely
Belize is a reactionary society, blame the recessive colonial gene that has crippled us, but as a society we do not live a culture of prevention. Consequently, as a country, the socio-political status of Belize is still within the premature neonatal stage and extremely vulnerable. Some apologists will say that preventative ...

Shalini Zabaneh regains Cross Country Cycling title
Team Sagitun’s Shalini Zabaneh won the 2013 Women’s Cross Country Cycling Classic organized by the Belize Cycling Association, from San Ignacio to the finish line in front of Leslie’s Imports on the George Price Highway on ...

Daniel, Fabio & Bjourne win national junior ranking tournament
Three champs rose to the occasion when the Belize Table Tennis Association held the 2013 SMART bi-annual national ranking tournament at the Belize Elementary School auditorium over the weekend. Daniel Sanchez Jr. won as new national ...

Police arrests FC Belize in Finals Game 1
The Police United FC gained the advantage to possibly win their first national football championship by winning Game 1 of 2013 Premier League of Belize football championship finals ...

UDP blames “archaeology people” for Noh Mul desecration
Did anyone notice? Just about everyone had an official reaction to the Noh Mul destruction. Press releases were sent out by COLA, PUP, UB Archaeology Students and even NICH. Just ...

Bus operators iron out issues in Chetumal
Belizean bus operators have restored access to the parking facility at the Mercado Lazaro Cardenaz, known to Belizeans as the “Mercado Nuevo” or “New Market”. For several weeks, the bus operators have been parking on streets near the market, contrary to regulations, after they were forced out ...

AMAZING GRACE – What’s Your Motivation?
Humans are complex creatures. The average person constantly twists his words to suit the occasion. Let’s be honest. Many times, condolences handed out at funerals are never genuinely meant. We tell visitors to comeback any time, when we really don’t ever want to see them again. We smile to the ...

Minister’s daughter faces possible prosecution for accident
Belmopan Police have issued a Notice of Intended Prosecution to Giselly Gibson the daughter of UDP Senator/Minister of Public Service Charles Gibson after she was reportedly involved in a traffic accident over the weekend. At the time of the accident, the Minister’s Government-assigned Toyota Hilux with license ...

Gilroy Usher, Sr. assists with Housing in Port Loyola
In the first week of May Gilroy Usher, Sr. assisted Mr. and Mrs. Steve Ferrell of #7174 ...

Chief Nursing Officer’s Address on Nurses Week
When I asked the President of NAB, Ms.Georgia Franklin, what was I expected to say to the Nurses at this conference, she said anything that I wanted. Since I know that ...

Agric Show Grounds – Where is the vision?
By Richard Harrison I have mentioned before that the Agricultural Show Grounds is a valuable property estimated to value around BZ$15 million. It is my opinion....that a property of this value should warrant a comprehensive integral development and business plan....with a blue print for the entire property.... and financially prudent business forecasts. ...

University of Arkansas professors & students visit Dangriga
Mayor H. Gilbert Swaso, Deputy Mayor Gilroy Howard Flores and Managers and fellow Staff of the Dangriga Town Council gave a warm and heartfelt welcome to the Professors and Students of the University of Arkansas who ...

Overwhelmed + Anxiety = STRESS
By Dr. Angela Banner Joseph “Stress is the trash of modern life - we all generate it, but if you don’t dispose of it properly, it will pile up and overtake your life”- Danzae Pace How do you handle stress? What happens to your body when you are stressed? What tools do ...

WOMAN IN THE HOUSE – Big up Margaret Nicholas!!
By Dolores Balderamos Garcia Just this past week I learned that Margaret Nicholas is leaving the bench as Director of the Family Court at the end of the month. ‘Miss Nick’ as she is affectionately called, has had a long career at the Family Court, a vital part of our court system and ...

by anthony sylvestre In the most powerful country on earth, there is a city called Philadelphia. It is in the state of Pennsylvania, one of the original thirteen states of the United States. Philadelphia is a city renowned for the statute of Ben Franklin, the Liberty Bell and Independence Hall (not the ...

Minister of Health Pablo Marin must go, demands PUP
In light of the report that twelve premature babies died in the Karl Heusner Memorial Hospital (KHMH) within the first twenty days of the month of May, the People’s United Party calls for the immediate resignation of the Minister of Health and of the Board of Directors ...

Sandhill Vipers win Edilberto Villa memorial trophy
On Saturday night the Sand Hill Vipers triumphantly raised the Edilberto Villa Jr. memorial trophy when they defeated Crooked Tree in the ...

1.2m Belizean entries into Chetumal in 2012 – Belizeans spent over $60m across the northern border
Statistics released by officials in Chetumal, Quintana Roo, Mexico have revealed an enormous emigration of Belize’s economy to the neighbouring city of Chetumal. According to the data, reported by Estereo Amor, there were some 1,300,000 Belizean entries ...

Major Victories for PUP! – Roaring Creek and Camalote in Cayo South go blue
The PUP has been performing well in the ongoing village council elections, and the past weekend’s victories in Camalote and Roaring Creek in the Cayo South division are proof of it. Both communities, especially Roaring Creek, were considered to be UDP strongholds. But the leadership of Cayo South Area Representative Julius Espat has shown residents that community development is possible despite political affiliations. This style has given Cayo new life and new hope. ...

Noh Mul destruction underscores need for respect of village leaders
The demolished remains of Noh Mul, the ancient Mayan ruin in the Orange Walk North constituency, will be a lasting memory of the bad leadership in our country. There is a lesson to learn in Noh ...

High School’s best and brightest – Part1: Nazarene High, E.P. Yorke and Sadie Vernon High School
In today’s Belize, there’s not always much to look forward to, but when it comes to education and ...

Gaspar Vega attacks protected area
In his lame response to the Noh Mul destruction last week, the Deputy Prime Minister Gapi Vega whose brother got the exclusive license to exploit Rosewood, told a bald face lie. Vega claimed that he is “deeply committed to protecting and preserving our national heritage and patrimony ...

Moody’s predicts Belize debt default
It’s only been three months since the restructuring of the Superbond was completed. It was a sigh of relief for all who had gasped in apprehension when Belize defaulted on its scheduled payment in 2012. While there was thunderous chest beating by the Barrow Administration about ...

Bachelor’s Degree Student lashes out at UB
Dear Editor I am a transferred student from St. John’s Junior College, where I got my Associate’s Degree in Business Administration with Accounting. I applied to the University of Belize to enroll in the Bachelor’s Accounting program. After my two years at John’s the University of Belize did not accept or ...

PUP candidates challenge Red Bank village elections
Jonathan Cho Chairman Candidate PUP Red Bank Village, Stann Creek District Mr. B. Q. Pitts Chairman, Elections and Boundaries Commission Belize City Dear Chairman, We the candidate and villagers of Red Bank in the Stann Creek District are outraged at the way the Village Council Election was conducted on May 12, 2013, and by this letter we ...

The Politicians and the Police
Dear Editor, The Commissioner of Police (ComPol) occupies an extremely important post in our fledgling democracy as he and he alone drives our internal security apparatus. It is through the ComPol that the State exercises its monopoly on the use of force and the right to deprive citizens of their liberty ...

“SOME ANIMALS ARE MORE EQUAL THAN OTHERS” – Still no charges for Denny Grijalva
UDP Orange Walk Central caretaker, Denny Grijalva, is yet to face any penalties for the damages which his construction company caused on the once majestic Noh Mul Mayan site which sits among ...


Caye Caulker day sail and poker party tonight
Hol Chan which is about 4 miles southeast of San Pedro town. Did you know Hol Chan is Mayan for ‘little channel?” Actually it is not so little, the reserve centers on a channel or cut through the reef measuring just over than 25 yards / 23 meters wide and 30 feet – 9 meters deep With the spectacular array of colorful sea life at Hol Chan, you will enjoy a wonderful real life nat geo moment. The popular marine reserve is home to 200 species of fish, nearly 40 species of corals, 3 different kinds sea turtles and so much more. The second stop on the Seaduced tour is was Shark Ray Alley, just a stones throw a way. Once the catamaran docks, you will see lots of nurse sharks, one eyed jacks, blue tang, a few rays and sometimes a turtle or two. The nurse sharks are harmless however if they are in a feeding frenzy you need pay attention and keep your distance.

I heard it through the grapevine…
According to LOVE FM, our local radio station, the Belize Tourism Board was busy launching a new visitor satisfaction survey at the Maya archaeological site of Altun Ha this last week (23rd of May). The Director of Tourism, Laura Esquivel Hampton, said that this is the first part of a project aimed at maximising the experience of visitors to all of Belize’s Maya sites while making sure that nearby communities benefit from tourism, so it sounds like good news all around. We love (pun intended) hearing about these sorts of projects that show a commitment to looking after our guests and the communities they visit, and we encourage people to provide feedback about their Belizean experience. Belize is small enough, and everyone involved in the tourism industry is concerned enough, that your voice can be heard and actually make a difference.

“Walking the Dog” in Ambergris Caye,Belize.
Have spent (more of it yesterday) what seems like an interminable amount of time (the +7 hour time difference doesn’t help!) communicating with the relocation company we are using in the UK (Excess International Movers) to ship some of our old household items and personal possessions to us in Ambergris Caye (as opposed to Belize City) for inspection by Customs. Haven’t got a ‘yes’ yet, but then again I haven’t got a ‘no’. So it remains a challenge on my ‘to do’ list. I then turned my attention to trying to obtain further indicative costings for shipping any online purchases (TVs , dinnerware, pots and pans, etc) we might make in the States for our build in Ambergris Caye,Belize. Having already obtained information from Hyde Shipping I sent emails to M A Pariente, Manray Express and Eurocaribe and now await replies so that Rose and I can decide whether to proceed with this approach or not. We did visit our build in Ambergris Caye, Belize yesterday afternoon but I got lazy when we got home and didn’t publish an edition of this blog. Deciding instead to publish a ‘double issue’ today!

International Sources

NOAA, TSR, UKMET, PSU, WSI, and WU Community Predict Active Atlantic Hurricane Season
NOAA forecasts an above-normal and possibly very active Atlantic hurricane season in 2013, in their May 23 outlook. They give a 70% chance of an above-normal season, a 25% chance of an near-normal season, and 5% chance of a below-normal season. They predict a 70% chance that there will be 13 - 20 named storms, 7 - 11 hurricanes, and 3 - 6 major hurricanes, with an Accumulated Cyclone Energy (ACE) 120% - 205% of the median. If we take the midpoint of these numbers, NOAA is calling for 16.5 named storms, 9 hurricanes, 4.5 major hurricanes, and an ACE index 162% of normal. This is well above the 1981 - 2010 average of 12 named storms, 6 hurricanes, and 3 major hurricanes. Hurricane seasons during the active hurricane period 1995 - 2012 have averaged 15 named storms, 8 hurricanes, and 4 major hurricanes, with an ACE index 151% of the median. Only five seasons since the active hurricane period that began in 1995 have not been above normal--including four El Niño years (1997, 2002, 2006, and 2009), and the neutral 2007 season.

Cruising the Yucatan Peninsula
THERE was a little obvious history immediately apparent to the casual visitor to Belize City, the principal port of the minuscule Central American country of Belize (formerly British Honduras), which was the capital before it was almost totally flattened by a hurricane in 1961 and certainly not to most of my fellow passengers on what was then the biggest cruise ship in the world. Travel with Dusty Miller I certainly don’t belittle the major historical importance of architecturally-gifted, rebellious Mayans, an ancient people, whose breathtakingly-built pyramids — many thought to be still; hidden in dense overgrown jungle — dot Belize and Mexico’s Yucatan Peninsula: and the country’s colonial history was fascinating to someone living in post-colonial Africa. There are many references to a Baron Bliss, the unusual name of the country’s major benefactor. Baron Bliss Day is among Belize’s public holidays, there’s a Baron Bliss Memorial Lighthouse and Park, a Bliss Institute Museum and Library and many Bliss health centres around the country. Yet Baron Bliss never actually set foot in the country…alive! (He is buried there.) A keen fisherman and sailor, he left his wife and estates in England to roam the maritime world. Taken seriously ill with food poisoning on Trinidad, Bliss sailed his luxury yacht, Sea King to British Honduras, anchoring on the barrier reef tying to recover in the soft sea air.

This week's Chicagoan: Rosita Arvigo, master herbalist
I left Chicago during the Vietnam War and went to Mexico for seven years. The boyfriend I had at the time was a draft resister. We were way back in the bush, about 14 hours' walk from a village that was a 20-hour bus ride from the highway. It was a self-sufficient homestead we started. We could do everything except weave cloth and make paper. We had a fruit orchard, and we cared for that, and it was just the two of us and our two children. "That relationship broke up, and it was time to move on. My parents were adamant that I should get a degree. I went to Chicago and en

Caribbean Room With a View: A Rainforest Getaway in Belize
IT WAS FOLLOWING a trip to Belize that legendary film director Francis Ford Coppola decided to purchase the then-abandoned Blancaneaux Lodge in the rainforest of Belize. Nearly 20 years after opening the resort, the 20-room boutique property remains one of the region’s great escapes. It’s one of a pair of lodges Coppola has developed in Belize, along with the Turtle Inn. It’s located in the northwestern corner of Mountain Pine Ridge Forest Reserve, a 107,000-acre reserve in the Cayo district of Belize. And at the top of the property’s offerings are the Honeymoon Cabañas, offering terrific views of the waterfalls that dot the property. The Honeymoon Cabañas are all about romance, perched over a Privassion Creek waterfall.

Portofino Resort- Now with a new BEACH BAR!!
Click for excellent scuba lessons with Elbert Greer!
Chaa Creek is an award-winning luxury Belize Resort, rated as one of the worlds best Eco Lodges. We are a pioneer in adventure travel to Belize since 1981!
Maruba Beach Klub and Spa is the premiere Secret Beach spa and restaurant located on the crystal blue waters of the Caribbean Sea at the center of Secret Beach, Belize
First Class Accommodations for the Budget Traveler
First Class Accommodations for the Budget Traveler

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