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The San Pedro Sun
Missing Police Officer
The Police Department has issued a missing person report for a fellow police officer. Police Constable (PC) #227 Martin Bustillos, attached to the Corozal Police Formation has been missing for a week.
According to the Police PC Bustillos was last seen on July 23rd and has since been absent and his family is reporting him as missing. The Police Department is now turning to the general public to assist in locating PC Bustillos. If you know any information or have seen Bustillos, you are asked to call the nearest police station or 911.
CATTLE MOVEMENT CONTROL
The Belize Agricultural Health Authority (BAHA) in collaboration with the Ministry of Natural Resources and Agriculture and the Belize Livestock Producers Association has implemented cattle movement control check points at strategic points in Blue Creek and Carmelita Village in the Orange Walk District. This is in an effort to keep the Corozal, Orange Walk, Belize and Cayo Districts free of bovine tuberculosis and bovine brucellosis, and additionally maintain a cattle traceability system. Other movement control check points will be established in the other parts of the country once the health status of the herds has been determined through testing. Farmers, butchers, transporters and the general public are advised that a movement permit is required to transport cattle from one community to another, likewise, into and out of the tested areas.
The movement control of cattle is in accordance with S.I. Number 77 of 2011 on Animal Identification. Movement permits can be acquired at the BAHA offices in Orange Walk Town, Belize City and Central Farm.
Belize Jaguars Football Team Members Receive International Award
Belizean football players of the national Jaguars team Woodrow West and Ian Gaynair made international headlines for turning down a match-fixing bribe just before their participation at the Gold Cup Tournament. This past week, both were invited by the UNCAF’s President Rafael Tinoco to witness the final Gold Cup Match in Chicago and to be guests at the President’s Banquet.
West and Gaynair gained international recognition from CONCACAF and were awarded by Gold Cup and CONCACAF for their honesty, integrity and patriotism during their participation in the Gold Cup Tournament. They received trophies of honor during the final ceremonies of the tournament.
Belize Authorities Take Defensive Driving Training to Improve Road Safety
The Ministry of Works and Transport, Enforcement Team received two new highway patrol vehicles from the Ministry of Finance and Economic Development’s Road Safety Project on June 28, 2013. These highway patrol vehicles are key deliverables under the Project's Enforcement Component, which aims at improving traffic law enforcement along the George Price Highway, Demonstration Corridor. These patrol vehicles will support the improvement of traffic law enforcement along the George Price Highway.
The Government of Belize has received BZ$14,495,000 in loan financing from the Caribbean Development Bank (CDB) towards the cost of the Belize Road Safety Project and is contributing a further BZ$3,191,000. The goal of this program is to improve road user behavior, leading to a 20% reduction in road traffic crashes and injuries. International good practice suggests that any officer driving a “marked police vehicle" should receive a basic Defensive Driving Course. It is vital that the drivers of these vehicles demonstrate good driving behavior by always wearing a seatbelt (and encouraging passengers to do so) and obeying the rules of the road at all times. They should always be good role models.
Pic of the Week: Costa Maya Delegates Go for Full Throttle Adventure in Belize
Cruising around the waters of Ambergris Caye is fun, but have you ever cruised on the other side of the reef? If you haven't you are in for an awesome joy ride. Riding the waves in full throttle mode the Costa Maya Delegates (Miss Belize, Miss Guatemala, Miss Mexico, Miss Nicaragua pictured here) got the chance to experience Belize's natural roller coaster ride. The day's adventures were provided by Seaduced by Belize, sponsor of the Costa Maya Festival.
A Trip to Belize City on Cargo Boat
First it was by sailing boat in the 1960’s, then it was by the cargo boat which was motorized in the 1970’s. After the Elsa P cargo boat threw away its sails and installed an inboard engine, passengers found it much more comfortable to travel to Belize City for their shopping or medical needs. It was in no way close to a water taxi as the passengers still had to wake up at 3a.m. to catch the ride. They would still have to sit on coke crates or empty gasoline drums for their four-hour ride, but now the Elsa P was equipped with a toilet facility at the stern and a shade for the passengers. The captain was no longer at the stern handling the rudder but in a nice cabin with a steering wheel. And of course the passenger fee climbed from 50 cents to three dollars to help cover the gasoline expense. However, the voyage was not at the mercy of the wind and sea because, with an engine, the duration of the tip was more predictable. Passengers not travelling by airplane could now enjoy a luxury trip when compared to one by fishing boat. This flashback is in honor of Felipe Paz the pioneer in cargo boat transportation and by extension passenger transport as well.
Misc Belizean Sources
Is Belize Becoming the New Honeymoon Hotspot?
The little Caribbean country of Belize is seeing a dramatic increase in romantic couples seeking affordable luxury in an idyllic setting, according to the Lodge at Chaa Creek’s wedding and honeymoon planner. "Honeymoons are such an important life event for couples that they’re willing to go that extra bit more to share something extraordinary, and more and more they’re discovering that Belize offers the same level of quality and service that more established destinations do, but at a lower cost."
"The novelty factor of doing something fresh and exciting is also important, but couples don’t want to take chances with something so important, especially when travelling abroad. Now that Belize has matured as a romance destination and has generated so much positive word of mouth, people feel more comfortable about coming here, even though we’re still off the beaten track and much less crowded compared to other places," Ms Duran said.
Starting this month, Chaa Creek is offering a complimentary guided picnic horseback ride through the rainforest as part of their all-inclusive Belize Honeymoon Adventure Package.
Actyl to Host Open House in Belize City on July 30
Actyl, a world leader in recruiting for the Canadian labor market, will hold its first open house in Belize City on Tuesday, July 30.
The company will host the event at its Belizean headquarters from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m., kicking off daily open houses it will hold every weekday from this point forward. The open houses will allow interested parties to explore what working in Canada is all about, including the educational opportunities available in the country.
"We are very pleased to hold these daily open houses and welcome individuals who may be interested in the wide range of opportunities available in Canada," said Dr. Linda West, President of Actyl. "Canada-particularly western Canada-is experiencing unprecedented economic growth, and as a result there is a big gap in the skilled labor market. This presents unique opportunities for people in Belize to find gainful employment, while perhaps embarking on a personal adventure all their own."
This week, Actyl is recruiting for a number of jobs in Canada, including 100 positions at McDonald's, 15 industrial painters, 15 industrial electricians, eight stockers at Canadian Tire, six journeyman automotive body professionals, two heavy-duty mechanics and two sheet metal technicians.
To be eligible for Canadian jobs, candidates must be between the ages of 19 and 35, speak English, have completed high school and be willing and able to travel. Actyl has experienced a great deal of success in recruiting workers from throughout Belize over the past year, with many individuals finding high-paying employment with countless opportunities for personal and professional growth.
VIDEO: Garifuna Cuisine, Dangriga, Belize - Hudut Soup & Fish Fillet
Recently in Dangriga, Belize I met up with Madeline at the Riverside Cafe. I joined her in the kitchen where she taught me some Garifuna recipes.
The Garifuna are descendants of African shipwrecked slaves who interbred with the local Carib and Arawak people of St Vincent. When the British took over St Vincent from the French, the Black Garifuna were exiled and ended up settling all along the Belize, Honduras and Guatemalan coastline.
Madeline prepares Hudut - a fish soup with a coconut milk base which contains okra and green plantain dumplings.
Madeline also prepares the Riverside cafe Specialty dish - Grilled Fish Fillet with Cassava Fries with a unique rum, tomato and soy sauce.
VIDEO: Belize - A great place on earth - Part 1
VIDEO: Belize - A great place on earth - Part 2
In Bloom On Open Your Eyes
Cayo's In Bloom, who play at Lucky 5 and at many special events, were on Open Your Eyes.
HVI's Hummingbird Summer Camp
Hidden Valley Inn finished their Hummingbird Summer Camp.
"Hummingbird Summer Camp 2013 was a success THANKS to all your support!"
Galen Eagles Take Second Place
Congratulations to the Galen Eagles for taking second place at the basketball tournament in Ciudad Del Carmen, Mexico, where they were representing Belize. Those trophies look great. Well done!
Luis Mendez Memorial Football Pictures
The pictures from the Luis Mendez Memorial Football Game speak for themselves. R.I.P, Mr. Mendez. Thanks to D Russell Photography for the wonderful pictures.
"Verdes FC vs San Pedro at la Cancha Marshalleck"
Teachers undergo professional development training in Cayo
Over two hundred school teachers are currently involved in a three weeks training program in the Cayo district.
The training, which began on July 22, will continue through until August 9.
It is being hosted at the PathLight spiritual retreat and conference center at Jaguar Creek.
According to a press release from PathLight, the fourth
annual teachers training conference has as its objective to assist the teachers in learning “valuable skills and innovative techniques they can apply as they enter their classrooms in September.”
The training is being facilitated by experienced teachers from North America and the conference workshops are focusing on literacy, positive discipline, match strategies and elective workshops on science and art.
Relocation of The Belize Bureau of Standards
The Belize Bureau of Standards hereby informs the general public that it will be relocating from its current location on the Ministry of Works Compound, Belmopan to the third floor of the Diamonds Building on Constitution Drive, Belmopan. The Bureau will be operating from its new location starting August 5, 2013.
The department in the execution of its mandate looks forward to continue serving the Belizean public and at the same time extends its sincere apologies for any inconvenience caused.
Chairman of BTB Board Resigns Suddenly
The Belize Tourism Board may be riding the wave of successive high years of highs in overnight tourism arrivals – but the organization just can’t seem to find stability. 7news has confirmed that Chairman of the Board of Directors, Ian Lizarraga is resigning effective tomorrow. Lizarraga told us that he is quote,
“Returning to his private sector responsibilities.” He says he has a restaurant in Cayo that is, quote, “taking more of my time than I thought it would.” End quote.
He added that he has discussed it with his Minister Manuel Juniour Herredia, CEO Tracy Panton and his board of directors. He told us that Einer Gomez will be interim chairman until the minister appoints a new chairman. Lizarraga was the third Chairman in just over five years of the Barrow administration, which does not speak well for long term stability, since there have also been three tourism directors, and three Ministry CEO’s in that same period. Lizarraga served as chairman for just over a year.
Three Escapees From Wagner Youth Facility
3 inmates who escaped from the Hattieville Prison on Sunday night remain at large tonight. Just after 7 last night – while security shifts were being changed at the prison, 3 inmates managed to bound over the huge chain link fence and escaped into the night. They were later identified as 17 year old Roqael Tuil, 17 year old Hector Garcia and 19 year old Wilmer Guzman. Both minors, Tuil and Garcia are Guatemalan nationals. Armed prison guards along with police officers spend most of last night searching in the nearby bushes for the men. Today all three men are still missing and the prison is asking for the public’s help in locating the fugitives. 7 news traveled to Hattieville today to see who the blame is pointed on.
Earl Jones - CEO, Kolbe Prison
"Yesterday we had reports that three inmates had escaped from the central prison - from the Juvenile Facility area of the prison. The three inmates are Roqael Tiul who was serving a five year sentence for unlicensed firearm and ammunition, he's a Guatemalan national. The second person is Hector Garcia, who is a Guatemalan as well, who is here for illegal entry - he's awaiting deportation and the third inmate is Wilmer Guzman who is from the San Juan village in the Stann Creek Valley area - he's serving a six month sentence for theft.
Auctioneer Kevin Castillo Seriously Injured In Accident
There was a serious accident between miles 26 and 27 on the Western Highway today. It was due to a head-on collision between a Ford Ranger pickup and a Nissan Patrol.
The accident happened at around 2 p.m., when a pickup driven by David Medina, Junior, went into the lane of a Blue SUV driven by Kevin Castillo, the popular Belize City-based auctioneer.
KREM News spoke with Amy Roaches, A BAHA Vet who was first on the scene and saw the accident unfold.
Voice of: Amy Roches - Eyewitness
"Between mile 25 and 26, a red vehicle just collided into him - it went straight into his lane. After that had happened I jumped out of my vehicle and I went to see what happened to Mr. Castillo - he was unconscious on his steering wheel and I thought he had died so I said that I would go and see if I could have consoled a screaming lady.
After I went by the lady, I asked her what the problem was and if she was related to the person on the ground and she said 'yes he's my husband' and so I asked how is it that she didn't have a scratch on her and she told me that she was following behind him.
Judge’s Vehicle In Northern Highway Collision, Man Left Critical
There was an accident on the northern highway this weekend, which has left one person in a critical condition. It happened on Saturday afternoon between miles 88 and 89 on the Northern Highway where Supreme Court Justice Courtney Abel’s government assigned grey Toyota 4 Runner with government plates collided with a car.
Police say that Tessa Owdker was driving the 4 runner to the northern border with Justice Courtney Abel in the passenger seat and a 13 year old student in the back.
A red Honda Car travelling opposite direction allegedly came into her land causing a collision which caused the Honda Car to burst into flames.
Driver George Reyes was rushed to the Corozal Community Hospital and then to the CARANZA hospital in Chetumal Mexico in a critical condition.
The Judge sustained no injuries while Tessa Owdker and the minor were treated and later released with minor injuries.
Mayan Leaders Who Want Out Of Land Rights Court Action
On Thursday, 7News showed you the long anticipated judgment from the Court of Appeal in relation to the Appeal by the Government of Belize on the Maya Land Rights case.
The Maya Communities of the south won in the Supreme Court hear before former Chief Justice Abdulai Conteh, when he ruled that they had customary land rights over their ancestral lands, and he also ordered that the Government of Belize should also take mandatory steps to protect those rights.
Well, in the judgment from the Court of Appeal, it was found that while Maya Land Rights can and do exist, GOB had no such obligation to uphold them.
The attorney for the Maya Communities, Antoinette Moore filed an application for contempt against the Government in the Supreme Court, in which the complaint was that the Government was not respecting an injunction granted by the Former CJ Conteh stopping them from issuing any permits to conduct any kinds of commercial activity without the explicit consent of the Maya Communities.
This application was to be heard today, and when the Chief Justice called it up, Moore informed the court that her clients wished to withdraw the application. That withdrawal was granted and the matter was dismissed.
Six to Court For Stash Found In Church Roof
On Friday we told you about the stash of marijuana, ammunition and a pistol found in the eaves of a church building on Victoria Street. As we reported, six people from an adjoining yard were arrested – because police believed they had stashed it there. Today, after a weekend in detention, they were taken to court an arraigned on multiple charges. Over two dozen family members crowded the court, and, off camera, they told us that it was unfair -
Voice of family member
"They didn't find it in our yard - they found it across at the neighbour and it was siz of our family members at one time and the way they are doing it - they're not doing it right."
Rowan’s Undersea Adventure
Last week, 7News showed you the end of 15 year-old Rowan Garel’s third major adventure, when he dove the Blue Hole.
Rowan, the blind young man who has become the ambassador for sight, and for the BCVI, made a major accomplishment on Friday, and we were there to capture it on tape while Tony Rath captured the action beneath the sea’s surface.
Here’s the full report.
Daniel Ortiz reporting
At around 6:30 a.m., all of Rowan Garel’s supporters gathered at the Radisson Pier to see him off.
It was finally the big day after a 2 successive postponements due to weather. But the significance of the event didn’t seem to affect him much, as he socialized with his friends and supporters, just another Friday morning where, he would dive into history.
And when the boats arrived, those who would accompany him boarded, and it was then off on a 2 ½ hour ride out to the Blue Hole.
Police Looking For A Missing Cop
Usually, it’s the police reporting on missing persons, but tonight, a police officer is the missing person.
He is police constable #227 Martin Bustillos attached to the Corozal formation. Police say he has been missing since July 23rd. That’s six days, and police say that if you know his whereabouts, please call 911 or your nearest police station.
Stirm Strikes Back At SPLC
Last week, the Alabama based organization known as the Southern Poverty Law Center, which is affiliated with UNIBAM and gay rights activist Caleb Orozco, released a 2013 report called "Dangerous Liaisons: The American Religious Right and the Criminalization of Homosexuality in Belize"
The report claimed that there were extremist right wing religious groups who were influencing the local Christian organizations in their campaign to resist what has been called the homosexual agenda.
The experts from the SPLC claimed that organizations such as Belize Action, a local movement by Pastor Scott Stirm was guilty of the very same thing they accused UNIBAM of doing, working for and being influenced by foreign gay rights organizations who were pushing to throw out Belize’s Sodomy laws as part of a global campaign.
Well, today, Stirm fired back with a release of his own, in it he claims that all of the allegations made by the SPLC report are false.
According to him, this report was a weak attempt which was timed to try to distract the nation from a month of Constitutional marches across Belize which, quote, “mobilized almost 10,000 Belizeans to stand for Constitutional values and opposed to the 2013 Gender Policy in its present form.”
Words Of Tolerance From Pope, Archbishop Tutu
And in world news that certainly factors into this local gay rights debate, there is a pair of quite noteworthy statements by international religious leaders.
First, the pope, in an 82 minute press conference aboard a plane after the youth summit in Brazil told the international media about gay people, quote,
"We shouldn't marginalize people for this. They must be integrated into society….If someone is gay and he searches for the Lord and has good will, who am I to judge?"
And speaking last week at a Un conference in South Africa about gay rights, noble prize winner, and former Archbishop, the 81 year old Desmond Tutu said,
“I would refuse to go to a homophobic heaven. … I mean I would much rather go to the other place [hell]. I would not worship a God who is homophobic and that is how deeply I feel about this."
APAMO, Right Back At Hon. Alamilla
Last week you say Minister of Forestry and Fisheries Lisel Alamilla answer her critics at APAMO. Well today, they fired back at her. Now we don’t usually do, he said, she said, and then he said again, but that’s what it’s turned into in this case – and APAMO did add something new to the mix – they brought out protected area managers who are resisting.
Edilberto Romero - Chairman, APAMO
"After 2006, oil exploration became the largest threat to protective areas, by her actions and inactions, today; we think Minister Alamilla is the largest threat to protective areas, especially if she goes preventing organizations from doing their work to protect the protected areas."
Raymond Reneau - Rancho Dolores, Spanish Creek Wildlife Sactuary
"The reason why I didn't sign the co-management agreement is because of the third party, part under licenses, says the that 'after consultation with the co-managers, the government which is the regulatory agency body can give license to a third party' - it didn't say for what purposes. A co-management agreement should be between two bodies agreeing, with what should be done, it shouldn't be, 'you tell me what to do', it's like I'm working for you. If it comes to signing, I will sign but I am letting everyone know that the part I don't like with this signing."
Finnegan Says Bze Football Has No Midfield, Can’t Pass The Ball
This weekend, the Gold Cup ended with the USA edging out Panama one-nil in a close final game. It was the closest finish for the American who had smashed all their competition - Belize included - with dominating performances.
Watching the game in Chicago were two very special guests of CONCACAF, Woodrow West and Ian Gaynair. They earned the invite to an all expenses paid evening in Chicago and a trip to the game by displaying outstanding integrity and patriotism when they turned down a bribe from a match fixer who had been following Belize’s team.
And that is about the brightest spot coming out of a Gold Cup in which Belize finished with no points and the greatest goal differential. It’s a learning experience so we take it in stride, but the sober discussion about what direction that stride will be in, has to start. And self styled football historian Michael Finnegan is willing to set things off. For months he’s been contributing to the Amandala with compelling narratives of football in the 60’s and 70’s when Finnegan was a team manager. His acumen in the sport is considerable, and last wee we sat down with him for an extended conversation on the national’s team strengths and weaknesses. Here’s what he told us-