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Specials and Events
Last night's TV news on Channel 7, Channel 5 and CTV3
Also with the most recent Open Your Eyes, and the Dickie Bradley Specials
The San Pedro Sun
Thousands of primary school students sit the first paper of the PSE
Over 5,600 primary school students countrywide sat the first paper of the Primary School Examination (PSE) on Monday April 7th. Developed and prepared through the Ministry of Education, the PSE tests the students’ knowledge and skills in four areas, Mathematics, English, Social Studies and Science. The exams are taken on two different dates, with the first date entailing English and Science. Amongst the thousands of students that sat the exams, there were 238 from Caye Caulker Village and San Pedro Town. 92 students were from the San Pedro Roman Catholic School, 45 from New Horizon Seventh Day Adventist, 34 from Holy Cross Anglican School, 31 from Caye Caulker Roman Catholic School, 15 from La Isla Bonita Elementary School, 11 from The Island Academy, eight from Ambergris Caye Elementary School and two private candidates. The examination center for both islands is the San Pedro High School.
Discovery Channel Airs Naked and Afraid Belize Episode
Discovery Channel’s Naked and Afraid episode 12 was aired on Sunday, April 6, 2014, and it featured two survivalists who were challenged to survive in a flooded jungle of our beautiful Belize. The man and woman faced a labyrinth of Mayan caves filled with poisonous snakes and rabid bats.
Naked and Afraid takes "survival of the fittest" to the next level. Each week, a new pair of complete and total strangers - one man and one woman - find themselves stranded in and, quite literally, exposed to some of the world's most extreme weather environments. Each duo is left high and dry with no food, no water...and no clothes. They must survive on their own for a full 21 days, with nothing but one personal item each and the knowledge that the only prize is their pride and sense of accomplishment.
Celebrity Couple David Cross and Amber Rose Tamblyn visit Ambergris Caye, Belize
Easter is just around the corner and a celebrity couple has already been sighted enjoying the best of Ambergris Caye, Belize. American actors David Cross and lovely wife Amber Rose Tamblyn are rumored to be staying at Cayo Espanto Resort and were spotted at Hol Chan Marine Reserve.
David Cross is known for his acting roles in Small Soldiers, Kung Fu Panda, Scary Movie 2, Men in Black 2, Alvin and the Chipmunks and more.
Amber Rose Tamblyn is known for her acting roles in The Ring, Sisterhood of the Traveling Pants, Django Unchained, 127 Hours and more.
Misc Belizean Sources
BAS Earth Day Celebrations
The Belize Audubon Society really knows how to celebrate Earth Day. They've launched a campaign to educate everyone about Belize's protected areas, they'll be doing cleanups, planting trees, showing movies on the subject, and they're having a video competition. They've already visited Roaring Creek Nazarene School and United Evergreen Primary School, click to see their pictures, courtesy of Dirk Francisco. Thanks, BAS, and happy Earth Month!
"In continuing to be a part of this world wide initiative, this April the Belize Audubon Society will once again embark on several activities in celebration of Earth Day. In recognizing the importance of our environment, these events are vital and necessary tools for educating the general public about conservation and creating support in fostering responsible livelihoods for a sustainable and greener environment."
SATIIM accuses US Capital of bullying attempt by US Capital
Last Thursday, Justice Michelle Arana ordered US Capital Energy and the Government of Belize to enter negotiations with the Maya of southern Toledo before continuing with their plans and preparations to drill for petroleum within the Sarstoon Temash National Park.
The leaders of the Maya communities surrounding the park are asking for an opportunity to dialogue with the company despite being told that all they want is money.
It appears that US Capital has tried to begin that dialogue – but not in the manner SATIIM would have liked.
A press release issued on Tuesday evening states that within 72 hours of the decision being handed down, indigenous leaders received an invitation to meet with US Capital representatives and their attorney, Michael Peyrefitte in Punta Gorda Town.
Toledo Spelling Bee representatives chosen
The Toledo district representatives in the National Coca Cola Spelling Bee have been chosen.
Spellers from the different zones in the Toledo district converged on the Father Ring Parish Hall in Punta Gorda town for the district finals. At the end of the competition Anselmo Choc from Aguacate Roman Catholic School emerged as the first place winner.
(SCHOLARSHIP OPPORTUNITY): The Caribbean Catastrophe Risk Insurance Facility
(SCHOLARSHIP OPPORTUNITY): The Caribbean Catastrophe Risk Insurance Facility (CCRIF) has expanded its scholarship programme to include Caribbean universities .
The CCRIF website provides information on the scholarship programme, including detailed eligibility criteria, application requirements and selection criteria. Applications for the CCRIF Scholarship Programme must be submitted via the CCRIF website at: http://www.ccrif.org/content/scholarship no later than May 19, 2013.
Joris Hendrik Fall Winter Fashion Show
Joris Hendrik is having his Fall Winter 2014 Fashion Show this weekend. The troupe will travel to Belize City for the event, which will be at 6:30pm at the Princess Hotel. It sounds like it'll be another unique show, with Chantae Guy as the headline model.
Joris was one of many artists that participated in the Paint Up A Storm art event this Saturday, and afterwards, he and the models went to Fuego for a post-fitting celebration.
Launch of Traffic Safety Campaign
Everyone is invited to the Sir George Brown Field in Belmopan for the launching of an anti-drink and drive campaign this Thursday at 10:00am.
"The Belize National Road Safety Demonstration Project in the Ministry of Finance and Economic Development and the Belize Municipal Development Project under the Social Investment Fund launches a don't drink driving education campaign nationally. The don't-drink driving campaign was organized under the BSIF Belize Municipal Development Project to be implemented as a part of the Traffic Safety and Management component with Town and City Councils nationwide with a collaboration with the National Road Safety Project. "
Caribbean Export Launches In-Firm Design and Branding Project
The Caribbean Export Developmental Agency (Caribbean Export) has launched an In-Firm Design and Branding initiative that will provide participating CARIFORUM state firms with technical support and financial assistance for the strengthening of their packaging design and product branding. The In-firm Design and Branding Project is the second phase of the Agency’s Brand Development initiative, the first of which was the successful hosting of a Brand Development and Packaging Workshop/Webinar in July 2013.
The Brand Development and Packaging Workshop was developed to address the specific limitations which regional firms face in branding and preparing their products’ packaging for export and to educate them in the required standards for packaging for export to the European Union. This In-firm Design and Branding Project will take a more practical approach, providing a unique opportunity for regional firms to receive technical assistance in the formulation of effective branding specific to their businesses from the internationally recognised UK based design firm Brand 42.
Jury deliberates after trial of accused in 2010 murder
A jury of five men and seven women were late this evening considering the fate of 21 year old Leon Gomez, accused of stabbing Salvador Martinez to death in January of 2010 during a high school football match which both attended at the MCC Grounds in Belize City.
On January 18, 2010 Martinez was stabbed four times in the upper chest, abdomen and right leg and died while being transported to the Karl Heusner Memorial Hospital.
He had gotten into a fight with the accused, Leon Gomez, according to main witness Elton Metzken, who told the court that the incident started when he was approached by Gomez and two other persons and asked about whether he had problems with another individual who was not brought to court in this trial.
Thereafter a struggle ensued and the witness said he saw Gomez and Martinez fighting, leading to the stabbing.
Police capture man accused of chopping an officer in the head
Orange Walk Police have taken custody of the man suspected of the attempted murder of police officer Marilyn Pate last December in Trial Farm village.
45 year old Oscar Jose Perez Hernandez was apprehended by Corozal police this afternoon in an area between Camp 31 and Camo 37 in the Mennonite community of Little Belize.
Hernandez, who is originally from Trial Farm village, Orange Walk was being investigated by police and Human Development Department officials for alleged sexual abuse of minors when he attacked the police officer, chopping her in the head with a machete.
The incident happened on December 5, 2013 and left Constable Pate hospitalized in critical condition.
Women helping women in Orange Walk
For over 9 years, the MAMAS program short for ‘Mujeres Ayudandando a Mujeres asusperase’ has been a major productive haven for women of all ages and backgrounds.
And for 16 young women, honing their skills in the art and science of beauty is a trade always in demand. Stephanie Avilez travels once a week from San Pedro Ambergris Caye to attend classes. And Lucianni Solis who hails from Sarteneja are testaments that they have the enthusiasm needed to succeed in life. Cosmetology instructor, Aurora Cal, says the group has been evolving over the years.
Choices are plentiful and growth potential is nearly limitless with cosmetology careers. Cal says the possibilities for creating a feel-good career are equally inspiring for these women.
Tomorrow Universe Promo Show
The Tomorrow Universe EDM Festival is scheduled for July 11th through the 13th, and you can get a free preview this Friday at the Cayo Welcome Center. DJ Diaz and Xavier will be there mixing some great music.
"LOCATION CHANGED!!!!!!!!!!!!.. BUT NOW ITS FREE....... BRINGING THE MADNESS TO EVERYONE IN CAYO"
Away Go We to San Ignacio
Great travel article about San Ignacio. Cahal Pech is highlighted in the article, and they have some great pictures.
"San Ignacio is a unique place as far as Belize cities go in the sense that it actual feels like a bustling town with some life to it (as does Dangriga), but also feels much more Guatemalan than Belizean (very likely due to its close proximity to Guatemala). This is difficult to explain if you’ve never been to either Belize or Guatemala, but the important take away point here is that San Ignacio is not like anywhere else in the rest of the country."
MCHS Open Day
Mount Carmel High School had their Open Day today. Education is the key, and everyone should attend high school.
In related news BCAPPS has a video out about the value of a Catholic Education. It's done well, and mentions the 11 member schools, including Sacred Heart College, MCHS, and St. Ignatius High School.
Sanitary landfills and coral reefs
On a recent trip to Belize to supervise the execution of the Solid Waste Management Project (SWMP), I visited the islands of Ambergris Caye and Caye Caulker to assess the rate of progress in the construction of two transfer stations from where solid waste is to be transported into the mainland for final disposal. As I was leaving the town of San Pedro in Ambergris Caye on a small 12-seat airplane to go back to Belize City, the passenger next to me surprisingly told his partner “look at that, we were diving not far from there!”
The passenger was referring to San Pedro’s dumpsite, where the smoke from burning garbage was spoiling the otherwise magnificent view of turquoise waters and the endless barrier reef. I felt unease listening to this comment as this was precisely the reason I was on that plane. We had just visited the sites where the solid waste transfer stations in both islands were being built to assess the progress made to date. Once these stations are finalized and the municipal solid waste from the islands is transferred to the mainland, the works to close the dumpsites will start. However, the works in both transfer stations at San Pedro and Caye Caulker, a nearby island in Northern Belize, have been very slow. This has prevented the initiation of the works to close both dumpsites, both of which are subject to the burning of garbage.
IT'S YOUR MONEY - Is Belize offshore investments in trouble?
Offshore investment in Belize is suffering as a result of the “gun to our head” financial and banking laws that GOB was recently obliged to pass, Senator Mark Lizarraga said.
At last week’s Senate meeting, Lizarraga, quoting from a recently published government Gazette, explained that approximately 10,000 foreign companies had been struck from the registry list.
Lizarraga made the assertion that Belize was forced into implementing the financial laws or risk being blacklisted by the Caribbean Financial Action Taskforce because the government has become too dependent on borrowing and increasing national debt.
Lizarraga said that Belize has been put at the mercy of these institutions because of having indebted ourselves to them.
According to Lizarraga, in 1987 Belize had an external debt of $200 million. That figure, however, has since increased to $2.16 billion in 2014.
Video: San Pedro Ambergris Caye Reef Belize
4min. Ambergris Caye is the largest island of Belize located northeast of the country in the Caribbean Sea. Though administered as part of the Belize District, the closest point on the mainland is part of the Corozal District.
The caye is about 40 kilometres (25 mi) long from north to south, and about 1.6 kilometres (1 mi) wide.
The Belizean island, where it has not been modified by man, is mostly a ring of white sand beach around mangrove swamp in the centre.
San Pedro Town is the largest settlement and only town on Ambergris.
Tourism development of Ambergris Caye began in the early 1970s and grew considerably in the later years of the 20th century. The main attractions are the Belize Barrier Reef and its beaches. That barrier reef is the second largest in the world, after the Great Barrier Reef of Australia.
Video: Turneffe Atoll Reef Belize
4min. Turneffe Atoll is a group of small Caribbean islands southeast of Ambergris Caye and Caye Caulker, off the coast of Belize in Central America, 20 miles (32 km) from the capital, Belize City. It is approximately 30 miles (48 km) long and 10 miles (16 km) wide, making it the largest coral atoll in Belize. The atoll was officially declared a marine reserve on May 1, 2013.
Video: Belize Barrier Reef
3min. The Belize Barrier Reef is a series of coral reefs straddling the coast of Belize, roughly 300 meters (980 ft) offshore in the north and 40 kilometers (25 mi) in the south within the country limits. The Belize Barrier Reef is a 300-kilometer (190 mi) long section of the 900-kilometer (560 mi) Mesoamerican Barrier Reef System, which is continuous from Cancún on the north-eastern tip of the Yucatán Peninsula through the Riviera Maya and up to Honduras, making it one of the largest coral reef systems in the world after the Great Barrier Reef in Australia and the New Caledonia Barrier Reef. It is Belize's top tourist destination, popular for scuba diving and snorkeling and attracting almost half of its 260,000 visitors.
Video: Expeditions with Patrick McMillan - Belize
27min. Patrick is the host, co-creator, and writer of the popular, Emmy-award winning ETV nature program Expeditions with Patrick McMillan. For over 20 years Patrick has worked as a professional naturalist, biologist and educator. His range of experience has concentrated on botany (plant science) though he is also well-respected through his work in ichthyology, herpetology, and mammalogy. Patrick is a professional naturalist, faculty member of the School of Agriculture, Forestry and Environmental Science at Clemson University, and director of the South Carolina Botanical Garden.
Video: The Ecological Impact of the Illegal Xate Palm Harvest in Belize
2min. Illegal harvest of Xate palms in the Chiquibul National Forest along the border of Guatemala and Belize is negatively affecting the forest. Join Friends of Conservation and Development (FCD) in Belize and a group of Sewanee students in Tennessee to raise awareness and funds to help stop the degradation.
Video: Bottlenose dolphin "Pack" inspects our boat during research surveys in Turneffe Atoll, Belize
1min. "Pack" is an adult male bottlenose dolphin who has been seen regularly at Turneffe Atoll, Belize by Oceanic Society researchers since 1993. When encountered, Pack often approaches our boat to get a closer look. Our researchers and research volunteers use a combination of underwater video and a hydrophone to document and analyze dolphin behavior around Turneffe Atoll. The information we gather is used to learn more about these mysterious animals so that we can more effectively protect them.
Video: Belize dive 2014
Video: Scuba diving with dolphins in Belize
1.5min. While on one of my dives I was able to experience a once in a lifetime opportunity and swim with dolphins in the wild. Truly the best dive in my entire life!
Video: Lighthouse Reef Atoll Belize
5min. Lighthouse Reef Atoll is approximately 50 miles east off the coast of Belize City. Equivalent to a large saltwater lake surrounded by a ring of coral in the middle of the Caribbean, the Lighthouse Reef Atoll is 27 miles in length and about eight miles wide.With its unique variety of marine life in such an untouched state, Lighthouse Reef is one of the largest and most impressive examples of an atoll coral reef ecosystem.
Video: Belize National Anthem - Land of the Free (Instrumental)
Video: HARPER'S BAZAAR INTERIORS May/June 2014 Issue : First Lady Kim Simplis' Belize
5min. Take a look Behind- The-Scenes at HARPER'S BAZAAR INTERIORS: KIM SIMPLIS' BELIZE April 2014 Photo shoot produced by Harper's Bazaar International Style Editor LUIGI IRAUZQUI and be part of this breathtaking pictorial adventure: from the tropical Central American jungles to the turquoise waters of the Belizian Caribbean Sea.
Croc Attack#2 In Bze District Not Fatal
There was another crocodile attack at mile 9 on the Western Highway yesterday afternoon, fortunately this one was not fatal. But, coming only 48 hours after a croc killed a man in Ladyville, it is very disturbing. Fortunately, we can confirm that the two male victims received only minor injuries and are out of the hospital.
Here's how it happened: At around 3:00, a 13 year old boy was diving for fish with his adult brother in law – who is a BDF soldier - in the Almond Hill Lagoon off mile 9 on the Western Highway. It's an area they often fish in but yesterday, the 13 year old says he was in the water up to his thigh, when he felt something unusual nudge against his foot. He told us off camera what happened next:
Michael Mark Majill - Survived Croc Attack
"I was in the water toward the roadside, and I just felt something hit my leg. When it hit my leg, I felt it bite me, and when I spun around, the crocodile was right there. When I screamed out, my brother-in-law hit it in the head. I then spun around and watched him. He shoved his hand into its mouth. He was fighting with it, and it dragged him under the water. It brought him back up, and when I saw him run, I ran behind him."
Man-Eating Croc Almost Caught On Tues. Night
But he can't be in a greater rush to find a croc than Vince Rose. Rose is the Crocodile expert at ACES the American Crocodile Education Sanctuary in Ladyville. Since yesterday he's been hunting the man-eater that killed 47 year old Carl Diaz, who was fishing in the area of Green Estate on Monday afternoon, when a crocodile killed him.
Vince Rose set traps yesterday and last night he had a close encounter with the ten foot beast – who seemed to have no fear of humans. He told Monica Bodden about it this evening:
Vince Rose - Crocodile Expert, ACES
"I was really close. I had him within a couple feet of me. I just couldn't get him to open his mouth to get that rope around his top jaw - we call it. It's the only croc around here. I looked at the whole area all night. This is the croc; it's probably - it's pretty aggressive. I got into the water, and it charged me, so I am pretty sure that this is the croc. And like I said, it's the only croc in this area, so, I'm just going to try again tonight, and hopefully get him tonight. Like 99.9% sure that it's a fresh water morelet's; it's not an American crocodile, and it's probably right around 9 feet, I'm gonna guess. It is probably going to be euthanized because really, we have no room for any more crocs at our facility, and I think that the Zoo is filled.
Street Mob Attacks Transgender Vanessa Paris
And while that killer croc is being hunted – yesterday in a disturbing episode a transgender person was pursued and harassed in a similar fashion on the Belize City streets. It happened in broad daylight at around 5:00 pm. The transgender male from Independence who identifies as Vanessa Champagne Paris was coming from the vital statistics office – where she had gone to get a birth certificate. She was walking back to Vernon Street to catch a bus when, near the Berger Football Field, a group of men seized upon her. She told Monica Bodden about the frightening chase that followed – for her safety we have blurred her face – and we warn you that the story does have some strong language:
Vanessa Champagne Paris - Was Assaulted By A Mob
"When I got close to the football field, there a lot of boys playing football. One of them saw me, and said, 'That's a man'. The other guys started looking at me, and then one of them ran off the field, grabbed stones and started throwing them at me. They were all calling me 'batty man' and 'faggot'. The others joined him throwing stones at me. I tried to avoid that, and I tried to run. When I got a little distance away, some other boys were on the street, and the boy who was chasing me, shouted to them that I was a man. So, they started to chase me, and I started to run as fast as I could, but I couldn't escape. They grabbed him in my dress - because I had on a black dress. They then pulled off my wig, held me down, and started to punch me in my face. They dragged me to the ground and started to beat me up, 4 boys. I walked to the roadside to Central American Boulevard, and some kids were still following me. They were throwing stones at me. I went to a drug store, stood there hoping somebody would help me, but nobody came to my aid. A boy picked up a stick, and tried to beat me with it. He threw the stick at me.
Norwegian Cruise Line Defends Reputation Against BTIA
On Monday, we showed you our interview with Environment Minister Lisel Alamilla, about the BTIA's accusation that the National Environmental Appraisal Committee and the Department of the Environment acted irresponsibly when they gave the environmental green light to Norwegian Cruise Line's Harvest Caye Project. As has been widely reported, the company wants to build a cruise port in the south.
But, their complaint was against NCL itself, claiming that the company's Environmental Impact Appraisal was inadequate, failed to meet environmental standards, and basically done only because they wanted the project to get to the next stage.
That's a major allegation to make against an international company, which depends heavily on its reputation of environmental friendliness to do business abroad. So, when we got the opportunity today, we asked one of its senior executives to make a comment. Here's how Collin Murphy, the Vice President of Destinations and Strategic Development responded:
Colin Murphy - V.P. of Destination and Strategic Development, NCL
"My understanding is that the BTIA has concerns over the development. I seem to recall that they first registered their concerns more than a year ago, before really, they knew what the project was. So really, they were against it before they had much in the way of information. My understanding is that they've written a letter to the Department of Environment expressing their concerns in the EIA and in the process. That does not involve us, so we have to kind of rely on DOE, which will respond appropriately, I'm sure. But certainly, we're very confident in our science; we're very confident in our EIA, and we'll let that situation play out."
Neighborhood Claims Police Came Seeking Revenge For Media Interview
Last night we told you about 18 year old Christopher Hyde. He's the young man who was accused of a hundred thousand dollar robbery, and then acquitted. But police never gave him back the thousand dollars they found on him when he was arrested. They said it was evidence – but now that the case has fallen away, he can't get it back.
That was last night's story but today his neighbours say the after effect of his appearance on the news was being felt when a police search team descended on the area where Hyde lives and hangs out on West Canal. They ripped down the burglar bar door at an apartment on the canal and ransacked the rooms. A resident told us they showed no restraint or respect. For safety reasons, he asked to conceal his identity:
Voice of: Area Resident
"Well, boss, those men they came through the lane on so many different cycles, ran up here, broke down the gate, and put a thing to my head, telling me not to move and all kinds of things. They stamped open the gate, and stamped open the door. They told me that I was under arrest. They gave me a 'roach' to eat, and they twisted up my neck. They didn't show any warrant, and they just came. This is disrespect to just come into a private property like this without any warrant or anyone concerning them. Last time, when they came, they broke the key for the gate, and this time, they came because my friend went on the media yesterday about a money that they took away from him, and he is trying to get it back."
Pharmacists Want Hon. Contreras' Daughter Gone
One month ago we told you about Danini Contreras. She's Minister of Trade Erwin Contreras's daughter – and is the newly installed Director of the Drug Inspectorate in the Ministry of Health. Contreras has a degree in Chemical Pharmaceuticals, but no working experience, and in March, the Belize Pharmacists Association sent out a release saying that she was not qualified for the post.
Since then the Ministry of Health has engaged the Association in dialogue to try and work out a compromise that would satisfy the Pharmacists and keep the young Ms. Contreras in the post.
The news tonight is that dialogue has failed, and the compromise proposal put forward by the ministry has been rejected. A lengthy two-page release from the Pharmacists Association today says that Contreras's contract should be rescinded, because she was contracted in a non-existent post and is not qualified under the job description set out by the Ministry of Health. The Association demands that the Ministry adhere to proper procedure when filling the post, and that it create an entire unit to do the job.
Squatters Tell Hon. King To Remember Pre-Election Promises
On Monday, we showed you the Lake I Area Rep. Mark King's no nonsense position on the squatters who are in the way of the Lake I Boulevard development. His message to them was that they needed to move their houses, and join the line of persons who are applying for land in Lake Independence.
Well, it seems that some of those squatters have heard his warning, but are still hesitant to heed it. We spoke with one of them yesterday, and she told us that King should remember that he made promises to them when he asked for their votes in the last elections:
Voice of: Squatter
"I just want to remind the Prime Minister or Area Representative, and our Hon. Dean Barrow, that when we had our meeting with our area representative in November, he promised us that they were going to survey this land, and give us with leases and titles. All that we are asking; we are not asking for everything. We just want a small piece of land to put our houses. We're quarrelling with the Government; we do not want them to do as we are saying. We are begging please and asking for leniency from him. Have some compassion; we are all human beings. As how he said that we are illegal and what's not, the same Government that is in the position make sure that everyone in this area get their nationalities already. All that we want is that for him to please touch his heart and not move us from our houses."
SATIIM Scolds Mike Peyrefitte
Last week Thursday, we told you about the decision handed down by Justice Michelle Arana where SATIIM and the Mayan Communities challenged the Government's decision to grant US Capital Energy a permit to drill for oil inside the Sarstoon Temash National Park.
Both sides were claiming an overwhelming victory. Well, it seems that US Capital Energy invited the Mayans to a sit-down meeting in which their Company Lawyer, Michael Peyrefitte, wanted to explain their interpretation of the judgement.
That meeting was supposed to have taken place yesterday at the US Capital Energy office in Punta Gorda, but the communities boycotted. They took that as an attempt by US Capital to try to weaken their resolve, which they found to be outrageous.
A statement sent by SATIIM yesterday says, quote, "When did Mr. Michael Peyrefitte become the legal counsel for these communities? Is this even ethical for his profession?" End quote.
The Statement continues, "US Capital Energy and its operatives need to understand that maintaining the status quo – bullying communities - is no longer an option and that this action by the company is a vile disrespect for indigenous communities."
PUP Convention Contention: Silva's Camp Cries Foul
For months we've been telling you about the upcoming PUP convention in Cayo Central pitting Luke Espat against Dan Silva. It's one of the most hotly contested internal political contests in a while – and with only weeks to go tensions are through the roof tonight. That's because Dan Silva's committee says the party's national executive is playing favourites with Luke Espat.
The dispute centers over the location for the convention. The Cayo Central Committee wants it at the Santa Elena RC School. But the Committee is chaired by Collet Montejo – who is a Luke Espat supporter – and he reportedly wants it at the United Pentecostal School. Now, party Chairman Henry Usher has decided that it should be held at United Pentecostal. Party Secretary General Myrtle Palacio was sent to investigate and she agreed with the Committee, that the RC School was better. But Chairman Usher over-ruled her and tonight Silva's Committee is crying foul. They sent a heated press release this evening saying that quote, "(the) decision by the National Executive to side with the Party Chairman and the Luke Espat team to overrule the decisions of the duly constituted Cayo Central Executive Committee and to sideline the written objective recommendations made by the Secretary General of the Party…is strongly condemned by the Daniel Silva Executive Committee."
Solid Waste, The Way Forward
Last year, the way your waste was handled was drastically changed, from an unsanitary, unsafe mess, into the model of garbage disposal in the region.
With the transfer stations and the Sanitary Land Fill becoming operational, solid waste management has been streamlined, but the Solid Waste Management Authority is not satisfied with the progress they've made. They want to improve on the model, so today, they held their third workshop to discuss the implementation of a National Solid Waste Management Policy and Strategy.
7News stopped and spoke with the organizers about it:
Today's workshop was the third out of a series of 8 to engage stakeholders on this policy and strategy.
Aboard The Jewel
Norwegian Cruise Line's Harvest Caye project has been the source of controversy ever since talks emerged last year between the company and the Government to open the south cruise tourism. Opponents, principally from the Belize Tourism Industry Association say that cruise tourism undermines and devalues their big ticket item, which is overnight tourism.
So, to try to change the perception of cruise tourists as cheapos, Norwegian invited the media unto one of its cruise ships on a tour to show the public a little of what happens behind the golden curtain. Daniel Ortiz attended today, and he was duly impressed:
Daniel Ortiz Reporting
The Norwegian Jewel - this behemoth of a cruise ship, launched in 2005, is pretty much a floating world-class hotel and resort with 15 decks, 1,100 crew members from 60 different countries to manage it, and enough space to comfortably accommodate about 2,500 passengers.
BlakBerry Goes "Internash" With New Video
Local reggae artist BlakBerry is one of the most determined and focused artists on the local scene. And now he's hoping that a slick new music video put together by a high profile Jamaican director will get him some much deserved attention. He told us that the video is a two in one and he believes it breaks new ground:
Transgender woman is stoned and beaten by an angry mob
On Tuesday evening, a transgender woman was badly beaten in Belize City. She goes by the name of Vanessa Champagne Paris and was walking on Vernon Street when she was [...]
B.N.E. gifted building is destroyed even before it is handed over
Band Fest 2014 has been moved to the Santiago Ricalde Stadium in Corozal Town. The decision was made on Monday, less than a week before the event. The original venue [...]
NCL Executives comment on EIA for multimillion dollar tourism project
The top executives of the Norwegian Cruise Lines were in the Jewel today and invited the media to a tour of one of its two ships that called on port. [...]
NCL says its port of call project is going full steam
According to Vice President Murphy, Norwegian Cruise Line has been calling on port in Belize since 1998 and the Harvest Caye project will further reinforce its presence in Belize. With [...]
Band Fest 2014 moved from Orange Walk to Corozal
Earlier we told you about the decision by organizers to move the popular Band Fest from the People’s Stadium in Orange Walk to the Santiago Ricalde Stadium in Corozal. There’s [...]
The state of the People’s Stadium in Orange Walk
So that’s the Band Fest story in a nutshell. But since we were at the People’s Stadium, we couldn’t help but take a closer look at the facilities there. It [...]
Update on the consultation called by U.S. Capital Energy in the south
As we reported on Tuesday, attempts by U.S. Capital Energy to convene a meeting with indigenous leaders in the south, in the wake of a Supreme Court ruling in favor [...]
The murder trial of Leon Gomez wraps up
In the Supreme Court today, the murder trial of Leon Gomez was summed up by Justice Adolph Lucas and at news time, a jury was still deliberating. Gomez, a Belize [...]
Mother of 5 fined $10,000 for drug trafficking conviction
A mother of five children, the youngest only one year old, was today imposed a non-custodial sentence and fined a whopping ten thousand dollars for drug trafficking. The court also [...]
A media tour on the Norwegian Jewel
The Norwegian Cruise Ship project on Harvest Caye has been getting a battering from private tourism stakeholders in the south. The project came under fire from as soon as it [...]
Pharmacists Association wants MOH to cancel appointment of Director of Drug Inspectorate
Since the appointment of Danini Contreras, daughter of U.D.P. minister Erwin Contreras, to the post of Director of Drug Inspectorate on March fourth, the Pharmacists Association of Belize has been [...]
Association says it has the support from PSU and NTUCB
President of the association, Hortence Humes, says that they have presented the matter to the Public Service Union, as well as the National Trade Union Congress. She says that they [...]