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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

Breaking News: American Citizen lost at sea
Upon doing so a wave hit them causing their kayak to overturn. Bradley Josker stated that they tried for about 10 minutes to get back on the kayak but were unsuccessful, another wave then hit them causing them to drift apart and that was the last time he saw his friend. Bradley Josker tried to swim towards shore but was unable to because the current kept pulling him over the reef. Bradley was later rescued by the Belize Coast Guard; they also searched the area for Wrangler; however, it was unsuccessful. Shane Leesman is of Caucasian decent, 5'8″ in height, weights about 170lbs has a sleeve tattoo on his arm and was last seen wearing only a white swim shorts. Police investigation into the matter continues.

Ernildo Jones hosts first ever Elito Arceo Cup
San Pedro's football enthusiasts came out the Saca Chispas Football Field on Sunday, April 27th to participate in a football marathon, namely the Elito Arceo Cup, hosted by Ernildo Jones. The marathon was sponsored by Elito Arceo, Dr. Geovanni Solorzano and Councilor Wally Nu�ez. The games commenced around noon, and by 8PM the winning teams were being awarded a trophy and prizes. It was certainly a day of fun and love for the sport.

Belize Coast Guard continue their search for US Soldier missing at sea

Gabriela "Gaba" Nu�ez competes in first Body Building Competition
Born and raised San Pedrana Gabriela "Gaba" Nu�ez competed in her first ever body building and fitness competition at the 2014 Mr. and Miss Costa del Caribe held on Saturday, April 26th in Cancun, Mexico. This was the fourth edition of the competition and it saw more than 50 men and women competing. The competition focused on the culture of sculpting the human body to achieve the greatest possible muscle definition. Held at the NovaSport Club, the competition's categories included male beginners, male novice, male classifieds and men's physique raid mode, whereas the ladies competed in bikini fitness and physical fitness. Gaba competed in the bikini physical fitness along with five other participants. "I can finally say I made it! I enjoyed competing; this part of my dream, but this is still just the beginning for me," said Gaba about her first competition.

Here is a quick video of our King Air doing a flyby during its pilot familiarization program

Ambergris Today

Coast Guard and Police in Search of Missing Kayaker

San Pedro Resident to Compete at the 2014 Commonwealth Games in Glasgow, Scotland
The XX Commonwealth Games will be held in Glasgow, Scotland from July 23 to August 3, 2014 and as a precursor to the games, the Queen's Baton arrived in Belize on Her Majesty's Queen Elizabeth II 88th birthday, Monday, April 21, 2014. The British Broadcasting Corporation (BBC) World News team is travelling around the world following the Baton Relay and making features, not only about the Queen's Baton, but also featuring athletes' stories. The filming crew from the British Broadcasting Corporation (BBC) World News met with San Pedro Mayor Daniel Guerrero, Deputy Mayor Gabriel Nu�ez and Hon. Manuel Heredia Jr., Minister of Tourism, Culture & Civil Aviation and Mr. Kent "Bob" Gabourel and were interviewed in regards to Bob's participation in the XX Commonwealth.

Misc Belizean Sources

Trailblazer Tuesdays: Mrs. Sylvia Flores
It's time for another Trailblazer Tuesdays feature! This week we present to you, Mrs. Sylvia Flores: Sylvia Flores should be well-known to you. She is a former Minister of Defence and National Emergency Management as well as a former Minister of Human Development and Women. In 1988, representing the People's United Party, she was appointed the first woman Mayor of Dangriga and was subsequently elected to serve a second term. In 1998, Mrs. Flores became the first woman Speaker of the House of Representatives. Among other responsibilities, she was tasked with maintaining the Standing Orders and Parliamentary Procedures amongst representatives who were not always particularly well behaved-and 27 of the 29 were men! She also served Belize as President of the Senate.

Belize March 2014 External Trade Bulletin & Consumer Price Index
Here are the S.I.B's March 2014 External Trade Bulletin and March 2014 Consumer Price Index. Statistical Institute of Belize. In March 2014, Belize imported goods valuing $162.9 million, up by $13.4 million or 8.9 percent over March 2013. There were increased spending in all major categories except Mineral Fuels and Lubricants and Machinery and Transport Equipment. The most significant rise was in Chemical Products, which surged by $6 million as a result of greater imports of chemical fertilizer. Considerable increases were also seen in purchases of steel and iron products for construction. The all-items consumer price index for March 2014 stood at 103.6, according to figures released today by the Statistical Institute of Belize. This was up by 1.4 percent from 102.2 in March 2013, and brings the inflation rate for the first three months of this year to 1.7 percent. The increase was mainly as a result of higher prices in the Food and Housing, Water, Electricity, Gas and Other Fuels categories. During the month, the Food index rose by the same rate as the national all-items index. The most significant price increases were for beef, pork, black beans, Red Kidney Beans, cabbages, carrots, onions and limes. Sweet pepper and tomato prices, on the other hand, fell considerably due to substantial increases in the supply of both products. As was reported for the previous month, home rentals in March, especially in Dangriga, San Ignacio and Belize City, were almost 2 percent higher than in the same month last year. Butane prices were up by more than 10 percent, with the average cost of a 100-pound cylinder rising from $116 to $128.

RED HORSE veteran contributes to New Horizons Belize success
U.S. Air Force Staff Sgt. Adam Moreau has been with the 820th RED HORSE Squadron out of Nellis Air Force Base, Nev., for about nine years, and he is applying those years of experience to New Horizons Belize 2014. New Horizons is an annual exercise incorporating Belize Defence Force, U.S. military and other countries' government and non-government organizations as they receive engineering and medical training opportunities for all involved. With his experience, and working with so many Airmen who are on their first international mission, Moreau is doing his best to guide the novice Airmen in their trade as he receives an advanced education in leadership. His career started 12 years ago at Langley Air Force Base, Va., now Joint Base Langley-Eustis, where he worked at the civil engineer squadron. A RED HORSE team arrived to construct a pre-engineered building, or PEB, and Moreau asked how he could become a part of such a team.

Belize-Guatemala Comics
By Abdulmajeed K. Nunez Everything in Belize is politics A fake nationalism has replaced our logic Some may call me unpatriotic But that's because I don't buy into gimmicks This Belize/Guatemala foolishness The ruling party tactics has positioned themselves to profit Denying both countries real benefits Whiles the governments and the OAS boys Playing verbal gymnastics, it's time Belizeans do their personal analysis Creating an imaginary conflict Blaming the British, when they and the Americans are orators of this comics They need to put a sock in it! I'm not buying it! Guatemalan and Belizeans share the same river Both can benefit from working together Fertile lands for agriculture and sharing one border Similarity in diverse culture Both have citizens traversing their borders

Residential garbage pick-up today
The San Pedro Town Council kindly informs the general public that residential garbage pick-up for today, Thursday, May 1, will be from 12:00 a.m. (midnight) to 7:00 a.m. We appreciate your cooperation and we kindly ask you to make the necessary arrangements for the above mentioned time. We would also like to take this opportunity to inform you that our offices will be closed today, Thursday, May 1, for the Labour Day Holiday and will resume to regular working hours on Friday, May 2. We hope you all have a great day and have a splendid Labour Day Holiday!

Fuego Wednesdays with Barefoot Skinny
Fuego Bar and Grill is having Barefoot Skinny play on Wednesdays. He's playing Pictures from last week.

Western Ballaz vs Tiger Sharks Match
The Western Ballaz are in 2nd place after narrowly loosing to the Tiger Sharks, 70 - 75. They travel to Belize City on Friday to play the No Limit, and there's a bus for fans. "Important game this Friday, May 2nd in Belize City at Bird's Isle against Smart No Limit. This game will determine the 2nd or 3rd seed team. We need our fans to come out and support. We will have a Fan bus leaving SHC at 5:30 pm sharp. The cost is only $5. You can sign up with Shalue Butcher at Aguada or Miss Jonelle at SHC. Send us a message to let us know you need a seat."

Ministry of Health Held Recognition Ceremony for Matron Roberts Polyclinic II
Government of Belize Press Office

Channel 5

Director of Health Services wasn't consulted about appointment of Contreras
Danini Contreras - the young lady from Benque has come under very intense scrutiny after she was appointed to the newly created post of Drug Inspectorate Director and today per [...]

Novice Director authorized to approve entry of pharmaceuticals
News Five confirmed on Tuesday that newcomer Contreras is now also authorized to approve the entry of pharmaceuticals through Customs. That decision was taken by C.E.O. in the Ministry of [...]

Health C.E.O. Peter Allen downplays Contreras' powers
As we told you, Contreras is now authorized to approve the entry of pharmaceuticals through Customs. That has raised all sorts of unpleasant speculation. Minister Erwin Contreras is considered a [...]

Are things cosier at the Ministry of Health?
Aside from authorization to Danini Contreras, Ministry of Health C.E.O. Peter Allen has also issued authority to two others to approve entry of medical supplies through Customs. As we've also [...]

Will pharmaceutical debacle result in legal dispute?
With all that out of the way, we can get to the matter of the Public Service Union, which has declared the Danini Contreras appointment as an essential services dispute. [...]

US Capital granted extension to drill in the Sarstoon-Temash
A delegation of elders from several villages comprising the buffer communities of the Sarstoon-Temash National Park is set to conduct an assessment of oil drilling activities taking place within the [...]

Toddlers after drinking insecticide
An Orange Walk mother's worst fear was realized today when her infant child ingested a fatal dose of insecticide.� This morning, sometime around ten-thirty, two-year-old Gutige Usher was outside playing [...]

10 months later, lawsuit brought against K.H.M.H. for dead babies
Five of thirteen mothers are taking legal action against the Karl Heusner Memorial Hospital for negligence. An attorney has filed a claim against the hospital for the deaths which occurred [...]

Attorney speak on roadblocks in private prosecution of Elvin Penner
Attorney Kareem Musa is also representing the grassroots organization, COLA��� in a private prosecution of former minister Elvin Penner who illegally issued a passport to a South Korean fugitive who [...]

Has NCL signed environmental compliance plan with D.O.E.?
The battle between the Belize Tourism Industry Association, Norwegian Cruise Line and the Government of Belize over the construction of a proposed port of call at Harvest Caye will imminently [...]

C.E.O. Mike Singh's inflammatory statements on Facebook
According to Krohn, while the fifty million U.S. dollar project is unwarranted, it is largely the brainchild of former C.E.O. in the Ministry of Tourism, Mike Singh.� Singh, who is [...]

Coye Family files for release of assets
The Coye Family was back again in court this morning because even though they were exonerated of a money laundering charge, their assets remain frozen. In a raid of their [...]

Coye Family Attorney gives update on challenge of unpaid taxes
The FIU had indicated that it would appeal the ruling of the Appellate Court. But the forty-two days in which that leave of appeal would have had to been made [...]

Cost of living up according to Consumer Price Index
The consumer price index for March, a government-issued list of the retail prices of basic household goods and services, has been released by the Statistical Institute of Belize.� There has [...]

Kareem Musa, P.U.P. standard-bearer for Caribbean Shores
Earlier in the newscast, you heard Attorney Kareem Musa defending five mothers who have been aggrieved by the death of their newborns. Well, Musa also confirmed that he has thrown [...]

Threatening words lands woman in court
A woman, who allegedly made threats against another woman to allegedly set her house on fire with all her family members inside, was before the court today to answer to [...]

Belize High School wins Coalition's oil debate
Oil drilling is a hot button issue. As it stands, SATIIM is fighting tooth and nail against US Capital Energy for drilling operations within the Sarstoon Temash National Park and [...]

Matron Roberts stands out as the number one NHI provider
Today, the Ministry of Health held a special ceremony to acknowledge the efforts of the administration and staff of the Matron Roberts Polyclinic Two. That's because the facility, which consistently [...]

National Song Competition launched
It's that time again�.the National Institute of Culture and History, through the National Celebrations Commission, is launching its annual national song competition. In 2014, however, the commission is for the [...]

Princess Hotel rebrands as Ramada
The Princess Hotel is now formally the Ramada Belize City Princess. The announcement was made by new General Manager Erol Olcan this morning, during a media breakfast at the hotel. [...]


Mr. Belize Wins Competition Mr. Cedral 2014 In Cozumel, Mexico
Mr. Belize Rigo Vellos has done it again. Vellos was named the overall winner of the bodybuilding competition Mr. Cedral 2014, which was held on Sunday afternoon in Cozumel, Mexico with a record attendance of over 1,500 people who enjoyed a high international level sports competition. Thirty six bodybuilders took part in the event which featured various categories. In the senior category, first place went to Vellos, second place went to Bladimir Burgos Castle from Cozumel and third place went to Mefirsoset de la Rosa Molina from Chetumal Quintana Roo.

OWFD Expresses Advisory On Increasing The Risks Of Bushfire
The Fire Department is predicting warmer and drier conditions in the coming months, increasing the risk of bushfires. Today, one such incident occurred at the Savannah where large plumes of smoke blanketed the skies. When we arrived fire personnel were monitoring the situation and told us that they expect more calls of bush fires but that residents can do their part in the prevention process. Kenneth Mortis is the Fire Chief at the Orange Walk Fire Department. Kenneth Mortis - Fire Chief, OWFD "Right now we are experiencing an extra dry that started a bit early so from the fire department stand point we will be face with these types of emergencies primarily the savannah which is well known through Orange Walk town what we pretty much try to advice the public is that while we the fire department will respond to all the calls we have we would remind that we will be getting more than one so if you can start doing your early prevention s that if you are faced with something like this then we can have probably a garden hose to just minimize the damage and to try to keep your vegetation as low as possible and if your neighbour vegetation is in proportion asked them to keep it low, manageable that if a wild fire like this should jump then your property can withstand the damage until the fire department arrives."

MOH And Department Of Health In Quintana Roo Looks Into the Matter On Belizeans with Leukemia
Reports coming out of Chetumal Quintana Roo in Mexico indicate that within the next 60 days, the State Department of Health in Quintana Roo and Belize's Ministry of Health will sign a collaboration agreement that will benefit Belizean children with leukemia. The State Health Laboratory will also be used to review the sanitary and epidemiological samples of Belize, to shorten the response time in case of a health emergency. We understand that this past weekend, state health authorities from Quintana Roo came to Belize to review the country's infrastructure and service delivery which served to finalize strategies to increase cooperation between the two nations, ranging from epidemiological surveillance to combat regional vectors, and medical care to patients.

Police Van Crashes On The Phillip Goldson Highway
While there were no serious injuries, a police van transporting prisoners to Hattieville crashed this morning in Biscayne Village. The incident occurred around 9am at mile marker 27 and fortunately there were no fatalities. Authorities say the police van slammed into the back of an SUV which was carrying a family of 5. Driver of the SUV reported to police that he slowed down on the road and the driver police van didn't notice in time. The police van was transporting 7 prisoners and 4 police escorts heading for the Corozal Supreme Court. The prisoner van sustained extensive damages and 3 of the 5 member family travelling in the SUV suffered minor injuries from the collision.

O/W Police Clarify Allegations Of Bribery
The confrontations emerging from the Shipyard community is a complicated matter that is centered on religious belief and practices. There are also allegations that the police have been bribed by several elders within the community to ensure they run their community as they see fit. Second in Command at the Orange Walk Police Formation Selvyn Tillett rejects these accusations adding that Shipyard is well within authorities' reach and control. Selvyn Tillett "Shipyard is part of Orange Walk, is part of Belize so we have jurisdiction over that." Dalila ical - Reporter "There are allegations from certain sections of the community that police is being bribed by the elders and those who leads the church and have these strict rules in order to have things run their way in the community, what is your comment on that?"

Traffic Accident Claims The Life Of Mother and Son
A tire blow out was the cause of a major traffic mishap that occurred yesterday afternoon which cost the life of a mother and her child. The tragic incident unfolded between mile 26 and 27 on the Philip Goldson Highway. According to the authorities, 35 year old Raul Magana, businessman and resident of Ladyville, was travelling in his Toyota Land Cruiser along with his girlfriend Lissa Ying Li and their 3 year old son Raul Li Magana Jr. when the vehicle suffered a blow out.

Mennonite Resident Of Shipyard Charged For Several Offences
In last night's newscast we presented the story on the fight that broke out at Shipyard on Tuesday April 22nd and which resulted in the arrest of Franz Petkau, a resident of the community. Petkau has been slapped with five charges. Today CTV-3 News spoke with Second in Command at the Orange Walk Police Formation Selvyn Tillett who gave us the report on police records. Selvyn Tillett "There was one Henry Petka and Abram riding their carriage and arriving in front of the Petka family one George Petka started insulting them and thereafter it is understood that he went to his yard and took a machete and assault these people and subdued and machete taken away from him and when he called for his dad he came driving with his pickup with his shotgun and fired a shot. Henry Petka receive a braced to the right cheek, he was dealt with and after investigation police arrested and charged Mr Franz Petka for discharging a fire arm in public, repeated assault with a firearm, having a firearm whilst under the influence, drove motor vehicle whilst under the influence of alcohol and he was taken to the court on Friday and he was remanded until the 21st of May."

Mr. Belize Wins Mr. Cedral 2014 Competition In Cozumel, Mexico


Armed Robbery at Huan Huan Store, Corozal
At about 7:00 pm on Tuesday, April 29th, 45 year old Wanbi Wu, a Chinese and naturalized Belizean reported to the Corozal police that while he was in his store, namely Huan Huan Store, located on 5th Avenue, Corozal Town, 2 male persons entered his business establishment. One of...

American Man is Missing after Kayak Capsizes Near the Reef
A day kayaking in Belize turned life threatening for two Americans and has lead to the missing report of one of them. According police reports on Tuesday, April 29th, at around 12:00 pm Bradley Evans Josker, American national, went kayaking with his friend Wrangler Shane Leesman, also an American...

Nurse Avoids Jail on Ammunition and Marijuana Charges
Back on April 14, six persons were taken to court for possession of unlicensed ammunition and controlled substances following a Police search of a house on Far West Street on Sunday. Nicoli Rhys, 23 of Euphrates Avenue; Rheonna Rivero, an 18 year old student; Shane McKoy, 27; and Godwin...

Five Parents Sue the Karl Heusner Memorial Hospital over Dead Babies
Nearly one year ago, several families experienced heart-wrenching pain when they lost their newborn premature babies to a bacteria that was somehow allowed inside the Neonatal Intensive Care Unit. There have been plans to upgrade the facility but no one- the hospital, the Government or those in authority -...

Prosecution Against Penner Alleges Encounters with Roadblocks
The continued prosecution against Elvin Penner has endured a torturous history over the last eight months. As predicted by Prime Minister Dean Barrow, his opponents are having a difficult time finding anything that will stick on the ex-Minister of State. But that, according to private prosecuting attorney on behalf...

Chinese Business Owner Held up at Gun Point
A Chinese Business man is short of BZ$3,100 today after his shop was held up. According to Police reports, on Tuesday, April 29th, at around 10:00 am, a Chinese Businessman and owner of Ying Li Shop located on Tiburce Street, Belize City was discharging items at his business place...

The Guardian

Pressure on Satiim
Over the past couple of weeks an organization identified as the Toledo Association for Belize Rights (TABR) has come out swinging against SATIIM. TABR's chairman, Joseph Estephan has consistently been out on the streets in Punta Gorda with loud speakers at any place where people gather to deliver the organization's message that Belize is for Belizeans and that SATIIM does not represent everyone in the Toledo district. His message is also one that the Ketchi people are not indigenous to Belize and therefore are not entitled to ancestral lands. Estephan's goal is one where he is asking Belizeans to join him to ensure that Belize's petroleum wealth, if it is ever found in the Sarstoon Temash Park, that it be spread equally to all the people of Belize. Estephan has gone as far as to visit the various Mayan communities in Toledo and has been canvassing them to get an idea of what the true sentiment is about oil exploration in the Sarstoon Temash park. He is also getting a sense of whether or not SATIIM truly represents everyone in the Toledo district. And he says, unlike what Greg Ch'oc would like the country to believe, SATIIM is neither representative of the mayas in Toledo or does his organization's views of communal land shared by all. He also says that the way in which Ch'oc gets people to follow him is almost dictatorial. In his visits to the various Mayan villages, Estephan claims he has come across instances where alcaldes with opposing views to those of SATIIM are removed and replaced on whims.

Petro-Caribe Funds Turning Possibilities into Realities
In initiating Petro-Caribe, version 2.0, Prime Minister Barrow's Administration turned the page on another ugly PUP privatization story. The late President Hugo Chavez's objective was to promote regional solidarity and alleviate poverty in Latin America and the Caribbean when he introduced the Petro-Caribe Agreement for Energy Cooperation. His goal, according to the Ambassador of the Bolivarian Republic of Venezuela to Belize, H.E. Yoel del Valle Perez Marcano, was to stabilize the economies of countries in the region using energy. Unfortunately, Said Musa Administration's doctrine of crony upliftment (via privatization of national assets) limited the potential of Chavez's trailblazing initiative. It is only now, with a Prime Minister committed to national development, that Belize is realizing the possibilities of the Petro-Caribe initiative. Belize signed the Petro-Caribe Agreement for Energy Cooperation on June 29, 2005. The agreement is for the sale of petroleum products on concessionary terms. The price is set at market rate since Venezuela cannot sell at a lower price as a member of the Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC). Belize can import about 1.46 million barrels of petroleum products per year, about 4,000 barrels per day. Belize currently uses under 1 million barrels of petroleum products per year. The terms are based on the world oil price. If the world oil price is less than US$40 per barrel, Belize has to pay 75 percent of the cost (referred to as the 'Cash Portion') within 90 days of importation. The other 25 percent is referred to as the 'Financed Portion' and is to be paid over a period of 15 years at an interest rate of 2 percent with a 2 year grace period. If the world oil price is over US$40 per barrel the interest rate on the Financed Portion falls to 1 percent and is payable over a period of 25 years with a 2 year grace period. The higher the world oil price the greater the Financed Portion. At US$40 per barrel the Financed Portion is 30 percent; at US$50 per barrel it is 40 percent; at US$80 it is 50 percent; at US$100 it is 60 percent; and above US$150 the Financed Portion is 70 percent.

Labour Day Gift for BTL Employees - 12% increase over 3 year
Belize will celebrate Labour Day on Thursday, March 1st, and workers in almost every sector have reason to celebrate. Due to Government's infrastructure program, there are more men and women employed in the construction industry than ever before. This Labour Day will also meet teachers, public servants, police officers, fire fighters, soldiers and pensioners, among others, set for a significant salary increase. The employees of BTL can also be added to that list of thousands that will see their salaries increase because the Belize Communications Workers Union inked an agreement with the Executive Committee of the company on Monday, April 28th, three days before Labour Day 2014 for a three-year annual salary increase of four percent along with additional benefits. For employees of the local communications giant, it has been 15 years since a collective bargaining agreement was signed with the company. Negotiations with this current executive commenced in June of 2013 and ended with a town hall type meeting earlier this year with members of the company's executive, the union's executive and their general membership. Anwar Barrow, Chairman of BTL Executive Committee, says an agreement was easily reachable because of the great relationship between the union and the executive. He says it is a "relationship that has been growing from strength to strength." Barrow says, "The one key difference between this new era of GOB majority ownership and the past is the climate of mutual respect that exist between the union and the executive� The union operates in an environment where the door has been left opened and they have unfettered access to the Board of Directors if they so feel necessary." Barrow says, "This access allows the rank and file to have their voices and concerns heard by the ultimate decision making body of the company."

Hugo Chavez's Legacy Concrete in Belize
"I don't think there is another country in the world that has gone as far as Venezuela in terms of making resources possible and specifying that those resources ought to be used specifically to transform the relationship of the people, help the poor, but Venezuela is giving until it hurts and for that I really want to thank them."- Minister of Foreign Affairs, Hon. Wilfred Elrington. In just 19 months the Government of Belize has gained access to over $200 million through the second incarnation of Petro-Caribe Agreement for Energy Cooperation and every penny will be used for poverty alleviation and national development, as intended by the late President Hugo Chavez. Using Petro-Caribe funds, the Government of Belize has been able to open the National Bank of Belize which lends to public servants and middle income Belizeans at rates that have forced the commercial banks to lower their lending rates to all Belizeans. The Petro-Caribe fund is also being used to create thousands of construction jobs countrywide in projects being executed by the Belize Infrastructure Limited (BIL). As a result, a new state of the art Belize City Center will be constructed and sports complexes costing at least $5 million will be built in every municipality of the country. Belize is a model in the region for the effective implementation of the Petro-Caribe initiative and on Friday, April 25, the program took another step forward with the official opening of a local office for ALBA Petro-Caribe Belize Energy Limited (APBEL), a joint venture company owned by the Governments of Belize and the Bolivarian Republic of Venezuela. Prime Minister of Belize, Hon. Dean Barrow, and Ambassador of the Bolivarian Republic of Venezuela to Belize, H.E. Yoel del Valle Perez Marcano, cut the ribbon for APBEL's office on Friday.

Luke Espat Thrashed, Dan Silva back in Retirement
The season leading to the PUP standard bearer convention for Cayo Central was one which saw Luke Espat and Dan Silva going at each other. The amount of dirt that the camps heaped on one another was no joke. Facebook provided much entertainment and enlightenment for those who looked on as the two duked it out. Everybody was apprised of Luke Espat's shenanigans at the port. People were also exposed to Dan Silva's inaction for over a year as his son had completed treatment in Guatemala and chose not to return home to face murder charges. We even learnt a little bit more of Dan's role in the soy bean project which cost over 40 million dollars and which never ground a single soy bean as it was intended to. But more than dirt, the extravagant spending that took place was unlike anything we had ever seen. Luke Espat plastered and posted monster size billboards announcing him as the re-incarnation of the savior himself. Dan was a bit more reserved in spending money on banners that couldn't vote. His choice of spending was on the ground. There are stories that he greased his way wherever he went. And it seemed that his money politics actually worked. At the end of the voting he had beaten Luke Espat so bad that it is doubtful that he will ever return to electoral politics again. The thrashing was of a margin of 3 to one at the hands of a man who said he wanted nothing more to do with the PUP.

Repeat Offenders
You know, for me it has been a while now since I have heard anything but bad or sad news. And even when our young, fellow Belizeans are not murdering each other, which is rare, or dying from serious traffic accidents, there will be some half-baked, uncorroborated, depressing story by Channel Fox or Maheia of illegal Rosewood harvesting, or of some low level clerk who is being accused of hustling. The dire news continued all over the Easter weekend with more deaths being reported, and then of our Belizean riders losing the coveted national cross country race, which Fox came close to blaming Government for, since they were not authorized to carry the event live. After those miserable four days, even when my daughter showed me the Facebook posting of the OW Mayor getting married, my spirits could not lift since that too seemed like a cheerless occasion. And of course there is always the Ashcroft Alliance which takes delight in suing Belize at a different location on earth every so often, hoping to cripple Belize economically and embarrass her internationally. To this perspective you add the frequent challenges of Ch'oc, who continuously files lawsuits against GOB, trying to compel the government to first carve out a kingdom for him in Toledo and then affording him our country's resources to protect his territory.

All Roads lead to Belmopan this coming weekend
All roads will be leading to Belmopan this coming weekend, with the beginning of the National Agriculture and Trade Show at the show grounds, located by the Guanacaste Park and at the entrance of Roaring Creek Village. The National Agriculture and Trade Show NATS Committee of the Ministry of Natural Resources and Agriculture has announced that the dates will be from May 2nd to the 4th, where thousands of Belizeans are expected to attend from all over the country. The NATS will be inaugurated at 4:00 pm on Friday, May 2. The guest speaker will be Alvin Henderson, from the shrimp industry. The main address will be delivered this Friday, also at the show grounds, by the Hon. Gaspar Vega, Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Natural Resources and Agriculture. The Show gets underway at 6:00 am on May 3rd. The cost for getting into the show grounds is $2.00 for children and $5.00 for adults. For this year NATS will have a new arrangement for the better flow of visitors. Organizers have zoned the grounds where there will now be seven bars in the bars arena; set up exclusively to sell liquor.

New Board of Directors for BTB
Belize Tourism Board's Board of Directors 2014-2016: � Einer Gomez, Acting Chairman � Herbert Haylock, Belize Tourism Industry Association Representative � Doug Thompson, Belize Hotel Association Representative � Gaspar Guerrero, Local Airline Sector Representative � Neil Bradley, Cayes & Outer Islands Representative � Glen Eiley, Southern Region Representative � Rosendo Urbina Sr., Northern Region Representative � Gamayel Babb, Legal Expertise � Christy Mastry, Project Management and Planning � Tracy Panton, CEO, Ministry of Tourism, Culture and Civil Aviation

Fire Season is on
The Ministry of Forestry, Fisheries and Sustainable Development and the Forest Department are informing the General Public that the Fire Season is on. In Belize the Fire Season is observed from February 15 to June 15 on an annual basis. Presently we are in the middle of the season. With the periodical onset of the dry weather, the General Public, especially agricultural farmers, are asked to take all the necessary precautions when using fire for their daily necessities such as the burning of their garbage and preparing land for cultivation. Most forest fires originate from negligent use. In most instances agricultural fires tend to get out of control due to the time of the day when the fire is lit and the failure to open fire lines around the entire perimeter of the land clearing.

Hon. Sylvia Flores is Special Envoy's Trailblazer of the Week
In this week's edition of "Trailblazer Tuesdays", the Special Envoy for Women and Children, Mrs. Kim Simplis Barrow, is recognizing Mrs. Sylvia Flores for her contributions to national development as a politician and educator: Sylvia Flores should be well-known to you. She is a former Minister of Defence and National Emergency Management as well as a former Minister of Human Development and Women. In 1988, representing the People's United Party, she was appointed the first woman Mayor of Dangriga and was subsequently elected to serve a second term. In 1998, Mrs. Flores became the first woman Speaker of the House of Representatives. Among other responsibilities, she was tasked with maintaining the Standing Orders and Parliamentary Procedures amongst representatives who were not always particularly well behaved-and 27 of the 29 were men! She also served Belize as President of the Senate.

Orange Walk East Re-animated
Ever since Elodio Aragon Jr. won the convention for the Orange Walk East Constituency, there has been new life infused into the area. Aragon had hit the ground running, and even before securing the seat as Standard Bearer, he had started to work to make living conditions better for residents. Since being elected as the Standard Bearer for the UDP in the East, Aragon has activated all resources available and the work has continued, now at an exponential rate. Just a few weeks ago he opened up his office on Liberty Avenue where he attends to residents on Mondays, Wednesdays, Thursdays , Fridays and Saturdays. During the week his office opens from 8:30a.m. to 12:00p.m and from 1:30p.m. to 5:00p.m. Having a functional office is now allowing Aragon to guide the work that is ongoing in the division. So far there is a buzz of infrastructural activity in the East where at least 25 streets are being upgraded. It's the kind of work that the division has not seen in years. Major roads like the Palmar Boundary road and others are the primary targets. Also being upgraded is the Santa Martha Road which is being upgraded and widened for use by those villagers.

Security Guard charged with ammunition offence
On Monday April 28, security guard, Mauricio Perez, 34, was taken before Magistrate Ann Marie Smith where was read a single charge of kept ammunition without being granted a gun license. Allegations are that on Tuesday, April 22, 2014, he kept in his possession, a black in color magazine containing 7 live rounds of 9 mm ammunition, 5 live rounds of luger brand ammunition and 2 live rounds of Aguila brand ammunition. In court, Perez pleaded not guilty to the charge but due to the nature of the offense, he was remanded into custody at the Belize Central Prison until June 17, 2014. Perez's attorney, Nazira Espat was seeking to have the matter thrown out since he was originally arrested by police on Tuesday April 22 and was not charged until Friday April 25 however he did not appear in court until Monday April 28. Espat in a submission to the court, stated that her client was in custody over 48 hours with no charges until some three days later when he was served with a charge sheet. The delay in processing her client was because of the arresting officer being on day off.

Special constable sentenced to 5 years
On Friday April 25, special constable Jose Adolfo Haylock Jr. was convicted before Chief Magistrate, Anne Marie Smith in the Belize City Magistrate's. Haylock had originally pled not guilty to a charge of having in his possession an unlicensed firearm being a .22 pistol along with 11 rounds of unlicensed .22 ammunition and 10 rounds of unlicensed 9 millimeter ammunition. The special constable changed his not guilty plea to guilty after a video was played in court. After only 12 minutes of the 1 hour 31 minutes 51 seconds of footage was reviewed, Haylock pleaded guilty. Jose Adolfo Haylock Jr., had been charged jointly with his girlfriend, 28-year-old Corrine Diane Martinez. They were busted on February 11 2012, at #3716 Louise Bevans Street, the home of the cop where he lived with Martinez. Inside their home the Gang Suppression Unit found the gun and ammunition. During the search, PC #619, Paul Phillips, recorded the entire search.

Charged with gun and weed offences
Barry Bernard Johnson, 21, a Construction Worker of #14 Welch Street in Belize City was charged jointly with 32-year-old Steven Olmedo, a Belizean Artist of #2 Bocotora Street in Belize City for cultivation of a cannabis tree. Johnson was additionally charged with aggravated assault with a deadly instrument upon Mark Anthony Jones and discharging a firearm in public being the corner of Hicatee and Dolphin Street. Allegations being made against Barry Bernard Johnson is that on Thursday, April 24, he allegedly pulled out a .38 firearm and fired shots at Mark Anthony Jones near Rogers Stadium whilst Jones was at the corner of Dolphin and Hicatee Streets.

Man is killed by his Stepson in PG
Police have arrested and charged 24-year-old David Branson after he allegedly stabbed and killed his stepfather, 69-year-old, Norman Benguche Sr. Police report that Benguche was having breakfast on the verandah of his house when Branson, without warning, picked up a knife that was on the table and stabbed Benguche three times. The victim was taken to the Punta Gorda Town hospital but died an hour after the incident at around 10:30a.m. on Sunday morning.

Sentenced to 3 years for sucking 8 year old girl's nose
On Monday April 28, 38-year-old Edelmiro Oliva was sentenced to prison for 3 years after he was found guilty of aggravated assault of in indecent nature upon an 8 year old girl. The Chief Magistrate stated that, "These kinds of cases are prevalent and we must ensure we send a message." In court, the prosecutor, Inspector Carol Tucker called the child to the stand. In camera, she testified that on July 18, 2013, she was at a home with her babysitter, when she stepped out of the house to do an errand, 38-year-old Edelmiro Oliva sucked her on her nose then caressed her on her buttocks. In the trial, Oliva was represented by attorney, Simeon Sampson who allowed his client to take the stand and give sworn testimony. In his testimony, Oliva explained that what the child said did not take place and that he was innocent.

Another drug related murder San Pedro
Dennis "Chingy" Palacio, a 43-year-old native of Maskall Village who was living out on the island of San Pedro, was shot to death at around 11:30 p.m. on Saturday, April 26. It is believed that his murder was drug related. Palacio was leaning up against a fence at the entrance of an alley off Seaweed Street on the Island when a gunman ambushed him. The man fired 5 shots at him, and when Palacio realized what was happening, he tried to escape. The assailant chased him down in a neighbour's yard and shot him 3 times in the back and once to the right hand. The shooter managed to escape, and 5 minutes later, San Pedro police arrived on the scene, and found Palacio dead.

Security Guard charged with ammunition offence
On Monday April 28, security guard, Mauricio Perez, 34, was taken before Magistrate Ann Marie Smith where was read a single charge of kept ammunition without being granted a gun license. Allegations are that on Tuesday, April 22, 2014, he kept in his possession, a black in color magazine containing 7 live rounds of 9 mm ammunition, 5 live rounds of luger brand ammunition and 2 live rounds of Aguila brand ammunition. In court, Perez pleaded not guilty to the charge but due to the nature of the offense, he was remanded into custody at the Belize Central Prison until June 17, 2014.

Teenager raped in San Ignacio Town
A man from Belize City has been charged with the crime of rape against a teenaged girl from San Ignacio Town. Garth Longsworth, born on July 23, 1982, was charged for the crime on the 16 year old female at the instructions of the Director of Public Prosecutions. Gareth Longsworth who is a sales marketing manager of Cran Sreet in Belize City is accused of preying on the teenager at about 10:00 pm on March 7th while she was taking a brisk walk on Bullet Tree Road and just after buying some food at Maxim's Restaurant.

Police United number one seed into semi-final round
The Premier League of Belize Belikin Cup Closing Season Tournament regular season will come to an end on Wednesday April 30, 2014 with three games on the schedule. On Sunday April 27, out at Toledo Union Field in Punta Gorda, the visiting FC Belize edged out the host team Paradise/Freedom Fighters by the score of 2-1. The visiting FC Belize got on the scoreboard first when Jarret Davis scored the 1st goal of the game in the 38th minute of play to give his team a 1-0 lead. FC Belize took this lead well into the second half of the game when Steven Baizer scored his team's 2nd goal of the game in the 73rd minute of play for a 2-0 lead. However, the host team was able to cut the deficit in half when Franz Vernon scored his team's only goal of the game in the 78th minute of play for a 2-1 heart break defeat. The competition continued on Saturday April 26, with two games on the schedule. At the Isidoro Beaton Stadium in Belmopan, the Belmopan Bandits and the San Ignacio United FC played to a 0-0 draw.

San Pedro Tigersharks are the sole leaders in the Elite Basketball League competition
The 2014 National Elite Basketball League competition continued over the last weekend with a number of games across the country. On Saturday April 26, at the Sacred Heart College Auditorium in San Ignacio Town, the league's leading San Pedro Tigersharks won quite handily over the Cayo Western Ballaz by the score of 70-65. The top scorers for the San Pedro Tigersharks were Winston Pratt with 17 points, 17 rebounds, 1 assist and 4 steals, Jamal Kelly with 13 points, 1 rebound, 3 assists and 3 steals, and Darwin Leslie with 12 points, 7 rebounds, and 2 assists. For the Cayo Western Ballaz, the top scorers were Farron Louriano with 29 points, 15 rebounds, and an assist, and Richard Troyer with 17 points, 11 rebounds, and 2 steals. In the game played at Bird's Isle in Belize City, the Belize City No Limit Team walloped the visiting Toledo Diplomats by the score of 105-46. The top scorers for the Belize City No Limit were Akeem Trapp with 19 points, 4 rebounds, an assist and a steal, Gregory Rudon with 18 points, 3 rebounds, and 4 assists, and Kevin Domingo with 17 points, 5 rebounds and an assist.

The Burrell Boom Police Cadet sports day
The Burrell Boom Police Cadet held a sports day on 26th April 2014 at the Elton Gillett Park in Burrell Boom Village. The following are the results of the Sporting Activities conducted at the Sports Day: were each winner received 1st & 2ndplace Medals with trophy in each sporting activity as follows: Football 1st Place- Ladyville Cadets 2nd Place- Hattiville Cadets Special Awards Burrell Boom Police Cadets Rural Executive Sports Day Most Goal- Michael Flowers-(Ladyville Cadet) Most Valued Player (MVP)- Joseph Seguro (Burrell Boom Cadet) Best Gold Keeper- Shawn Flores (Ladyville Cadet)

Belize City primary schools volleyball competition opens this Wednesday
The 2013-2014 Belize City Primary Schools Volleyball Competition will commenced on Wednesday April 30, at the Bird's Isle with four games on the schedule. The schools that are competing in the girls' competition are Hummingbird Elementary School, Holy Redeemer School, Muslim Community School, Wesley Upper School, All Saint's Anglican School, Belize Elementary School, St. Ignatius School, and St. Mary's Anglican School, St. Martin De Porres School and St. John Vianney School. Meanwhile, the schools that will participate in the boys' competition are Hummingbird Elementary School, Holy Redeemer School, Trinity Methodist School, Wesley Upper School, All Saint's Anglican School, Queen Street Baptist School, Belize Elementary School, St. Ignatius School, St. John's Primary School, St. Martin De Porres School and St. John Vianney School.

Magana Family Traffic fatality
Elissa Li and her 3 year-old son Raul Magana the Third perished in a terrible accident on the Northern Highway at mile 27 on Monday, April 28. The well-known Raul Magana Jr., Elisa's boyfriend and the 34 year-old father of the child, continues to receive treatment at the KHMH for that accident. Magana was driving his Toyota Land Cruiser with his family as his passengers, and he was heading toward Belize City. At mile 27 in Biscayne Village, he experienced a tire blowout which caused him to lose control of the vehicle. It over turned several times flinging Elisa and her son through the windshield, killing them on the spot.

Cornerstone in San Ignacio holds health fair
One of the Cayo District's most noted humanitarian organization, Cornerstone Foundation, held its semi-annual health fair at the Cayo Welcome Center in San Ignacio Town on Friday of last week. Residents had an opportunity to get a free check of their Body Mass Index, blood pressure and HIV/AIDS status. Other community members also came out to buy clothes from Cornerstone to fund many of its ongoing activities for vulnerable youths, women and children. For the day, workers highlighted Cornerstone's daily program in feeding 98 kids. From a previous interview, General Manager Rita Defour believes that no child should go hungry while attending school. The Cornerstone is a community based nonprofit humanitarian organization founded in 1999 and is headquartered at Number 43 Church Street in San Ignacio.

Macal River claims its fourth victim for this month
A young boy drowned in the Macal River on Saturday of this past weekend; thus becoming the fourth victim of drowning for this month. Johnatan Melisio Requena, 14, had dived into the Macal River on the side of San Ignacio by the Boat Warf, which is between the Hawkesworth Bridge and the lower lying temporary wooden bridge, and soon began to struggle to remain above surface. His close friend Jose Thomson, 16, reported that he had gone into the water in an attempt to assist Johnatan Requena, but the water was too deep. However; another young man jumped into the river and dragged Johnatan Requena to the river's bank. Passing men attempted to perform cardiopulmonary resuscitation on the child but it was to no avail.

Mexican musical Trio perform in San Ignacio and Belize City
A Piano-Soprano-Guitar Gala Concert was held last Friday night at the Cayo Welcome Center in San Ignacio. The free concert was brought together by the local House of Culture in San Ignacio in partnership with the Mexican Embassy. At the piano was Melanie Lopez and with guitar was Victor Celis, who last year had done a solo trip to Benque and to the cultural capital - Dangriga. While the main singer, Christina Woodward, has been exercising her vocals cords since being eight years old, only to perfect it during a six year experience at an art school in Mexico. All three Mexicans come from the Yucatan Peninsula and thus their choice of 19th Century Composers from Yucatan was clearly evident. With little interruption, Christina Woodward sang pieces from European Composers and popular Spanish Songs like 'Nana' and 'Cancion.'

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Edelmiro Oliva, 38, gets 3 years for fondling girl, 8
Chief Magistrate Ann Marie Smith sentenced a Belize City stevedore to three years in prison on Monday, after she found him guilty of aggravated assault of an indecent nature. Smith indicated that she wanted the sentence to send a message to those who may fall into the same category of the convicted man, who fondled an 8-year-old girl. In handing down the sentence, Smith said that "these kinds of cases are prevalent, and we must ensure we send a message." The trial of the convicted man, Edelmiro Oliva, a stevedore, began around 9:30 a.m. when the court's prosecutor, Inspector Carol Tucker, called her first witness to the stand. Witnesses included the police investigator and the child victim, who testified en camera. In her testimony, the child told the court that on July 18, 2013, she was at home with her babysitter and had stepped outside to do an errand.

PSU threatens lawsuit against Dr. Peter Allen
The Public Service Union (PSU) fired off a press release today threatening legal action against Dr. Peter Allen, the Chief Executive Officer in the Ministry of Health, on allegations that Allen had made libelous statements in an e-mail against Chief Pharmacist Sharon Anderson, claiming that she was "holding the system ransom" by going "on strike and refusing to sign" customs entries for supplies to enter the country. In its statement issued today, Tuesday, the PSU said it "condemns the attack on Ms. Anderson's character and reputation and will continue to support her in demanding an apology and a retraction of the email. If not forthcoming, legal action will be taken for libel." Amandala attempted to speak with Senator Ray Davis, the PSU executive who we understand is handling the case for the PSU, but he told us he was unavailable, because he was in a meeting at the time when we called him.

KHMH sued for 5 dead babies
Almost thirteen months ago, on April 1, 2013, a baby died in the Karl Heusner Memorial Hospital Neo-natal Intensive Care Unit (NICU). That first death was followed by the deaths of twelve other newborn babies who died in the NICU before authorities realized that they had a major problem on their hands with an outbreak of enterobacter cloacae, a bacterial infection. Since those newborn deaths at the nation's premier public hospital, no one has been held accountable. But five of the mothers of the dead babies, through their attorneys, are attempting to hold the board of governors of the KHMH accountable in a claim filed at the Supreme Court on March 28, 2014, seeking damages for their wrongful deaths. Attorney Kareem Musa told Amandala today that the five women, on whose behalf their law firm has filed the claim, were brought in by Yolanda Shackron, the president of the United Women's Group, about one year ago.

Blowout kills mom, 28, and son, 3
Ladyville businessman Raul Maga�a, Jr., 35, suffered a devastating loss when his Toyota Land Cruiser had a tire blowout at Mile 27 in Biscayne on the Philip Goldson Highway, causing the vehicle to violently roll over a number of times, killing his common-law wife and 3-year-old son who were travelling with him. The accident occurred around 3:30 p.m. on Monday when Maga�a was returning from the Orange Walk District and heading to his home on Flamboyant Street in Ladyville. Ladyville police reported that when they visited the accident scene, they saw a grey Toyota Land Cruiser with license plate BC C- 34719 on the side of the road with extensive damages. Maga�a, the police report said, was transported by a B.E.R.T. ambulance to the Karl Heusner Memorial Hospital, where he was treated and released. He had suffered a cut wound to his head and right arm, said police.

SCA's '64 grads reflect on history and pay respects to their alma mater
Marion Slusher, 67, describes herself as a "reunion junkie." Her passion has been organizing reunions for her former classmates who graduated with her from St. Catherine Academy in 1964. That was 50 years ago, and her graduating class made history in becoming the first set of girls to attend St. John's College Junior College. Needless to say, their male counterparts were excited to have them come on board! Although they moved from an all-girl to a coed school, they have since taken the time to reunite, and reminisce and reconnect. Their last such gathering was held last Saturday, April 26, 2014. Eighteen 1964 SCA grads attended a Saturday night Mass at Holy Redeemer Church, after which they gathered for a social evening at Slusher's home. They dined together and enjoyed the cabaret sounds of Beverly Swasey. Virginia Foreman entertained them with dance.

BTL pens new CBA with BCWU
Today, at the Renaissance Towers in Belize City, the executives of telecommunications service provider Belize Telemedia Limited (BTL); the leaders of its workers' union, the Belize Communication Workers Union (BCWU), and members of the union's negotiating team sat together and signed a new Collective Bargaining Agreement (CBA) for Telemedia's employees. The negotiations, which reportedly commenced last year, concluded earlier this month and led to the first new agreement between the two entities in 15 years, and at the official signing late this afternoon, both sides concurred that negotiations went very smoothly, with minimal agitation. Recently appointed Chairman of BTL's Executive Committee, Anwar Barrow, son of Prime Minister Dean Barrow, told the audience that the agreement - which spans up to 2016 - represents a positive step forward for union-management relations.

Weekend Warriors
The Weekend Warriors/Bel-Cal race held on Sunday, April 27, was held in support and memory of "our fallen brother," Ernest "Dangalang" Thurton who was buried on Friday. The Class "A & B" riders started at 8:00 a.m. and rode together from Leslie's Imports up the George Price (Western) Highway, to Hattieville junction, on to the Boom Road up to the turn at the Philip Goldson (Northern) Highway junction, and back via the Boom Road to the finish at Leslie's, for a distance of 50 miles. Class "C" riders left at 8:15 a.m. from Leslie's Imports and went up the George Price (Western) Highway, turned right on to the Boom Road, and went up to the turn at Boom Village junction, and back via the Boom Road to the finish at Leslie's, for a distance of 40 miles.

Belize National Women Team
A release this afternoon from the Football Federation of Belize (FFB) said that our Belize National "A" Women team had won "a friendly match against the Pumitas Chetumal on Sunday, April 27, in Chetumal. The team won 2 goals to 1. Kursha Pollard and Corby Rhaburn scored the two goals for Belize in the first half of the match." According to Mose Hyde, who is the new FFB appointed Chairman of the National Team Committee, there were some financial hurdles to overcome in trying to make the trip a reality. The FFB has a very limited budget, but his committee felt that the trip was important for the Women Team, who are scheduled to participate in UNCAF Qualifiers in Guatemala next month, May 19-25, for the Women CONCACAF Gold Cup to be held later in Cancun, Mexico. Their perseverance paid off at the ninth hour, as a couple private sponsors - Douglas Thompson of Black Orchid Resort and Yoni Rosado of Cave Tubing Dot Com - stepped forward to help make the endeavor possible.

Barnett sisters
Paying a brief visit behind the zinc fence last Wednesday were some familiar faces of yesteryear when there used to be "Fire at the Barracks." Earl "Mandingo" Barnett was a big football star on teams like BEC and White Label in the mid 1970's, and his sisters, Sherlyn and Barbara, were among the beautiful female fans that adorned the perimeter of the MCC. In the above photo they are accompanied by their childhood neighbor and friend, Marilyn Marin, a sister of popular Krem personality Yaya Marin Coleman. Yaya said that "Babsie" used to baby sit the four Marin girls, and later introduced them to the football culture, Mandingo also becoming their super star. "Our families have remained extremely close and connected all these years," said Yaya. The Barnett sisters are enjoying their visit home from the U.S., where Sherlyn resides in New Jersey and Babsie in L.A. Marilyn, a retired U.S. Naval Officer, now lives in Belize.

Deon gets on scorecard
In their third outing of the North American Soccer League (NASL) 2014 season, the Atlanta Silverbacks finally garnered their first 3 points of the competition, when they defeated the Tampa Bay Rowdies in Tampa this past Saturday, April 26, by a 3-1 score; and our own Deon McCaulay registered his first NASL goal. Their season opener was a disappointment a couple weeks ago on Sunday, April 13, when Belize City fans at the MCC watched on a wide-screen T.V. as defending NASL champions New York Cosmos delivered a 4-0 beating to the visiting Silverbacks. Deon played well but didn't score. He had scored 4 goals in pre-season matches, but he would have to wait a while in the official regular season to remember the feel of shaking the net. In their second game, the Silverbacks lost at home, 2-1, to the San Antonio Scorpions on Saturday, April 19; and again Deon was scoreless.

Police Cadets
The Elton Gillett Park in Burrell Boom Village was the venue on Saturday, April 26, for the Burrell Boom Police Cadets Rural Executive Sports Day where over a hundred young Police Cadets from Burrell Boom and other Belize Rural villages had a day of fun participating in various competitive sporting events. In each discipline, a team trophy along with individual medals were given to members of 1st and 2nd place teams, as well as special individual awards for outstanding cadets. Following are the results in football, softball, basketball, volleyball and drill competitions. Football: 1st place - Ladyville Cadets; 2nd place - Hattieville Cadets; Most Goals - Michael Flowers (Ladyville Cadets); MVP - Joseph Seguro (Burrell Boom Cadets); Best Goalkeeper - Shawn Flores (Ladyville Cadets).

Letters: Big up, Delmar Sutherland and Frank Folgarait
There are people who take of their time to make a positive difference in our communities and are seldom acknowledged. Kudos goes to the people who shape our kids' lives to make them better at what they do! Delmar Sutherland and Frank Folgarait are two of these people, who have transformed the lives of kids by nurturing their sporting abilities, confidence and character. They took the boys from the St. Francis Xavier football team under their wings and essentially changed the way these kids will feel about themselves for the rest of their lives. Last season, for the Mayor's Cup in Corozal, this team was the cellar-dweller in the standings and were physically blown away by the competition. They were taking losses of 8-0 and 10-0 and were unable to get a goal. About four months ago, Delmar and Frank teamed up to make a difference. They began to teach the kids the basics of football along with having them do rigorous physical exercise. They would meet the boys at the Santiago Ricalde Stadium after classes and train them for about an hour and a half daily.

Letters: Dr. Sharmayne writes Mayor Darrell
As you begin to plan the trajectory of the City Council as it relates to your budget forecasting exercise, I would like to strongly recommend that you consider including a mechanical STREET SWEEPER for the City of Belize, at least in the first instance. I know we are already on this odyssey to ongoing street upgrading of utilizing manual labour, as seen by your Council's decision to use Cisco Woods and hiring Southside males. If I may also suggest, kindly include signage that will indicate to the citizens which side of the street they can park for the days that the streets will be cleaned. I am very convinced that this could be equipment owned by the Council and the operators of these mechanical sweepers can be appropriately trained at the ITVET. I am hoping that we have not already contracted this service to party associates who are anticipating contracts that exceed the term of your Council's governance.

Letters: From Liyawada Cerro CBO
We are kindly writing to you to update your offices, readers and listeners about the struggle for clean drinking water in Cerro/Saint Vincent Block. We were very grateful for the publishing of our appeal for insight and assistance on our plight. We are also very grateful for the support we have gotten from neighbors, community members, and people from all over Belize who have heard our call for support. We live on the 960-acre Garifuna communal land trust known as Saint Vincent Block/Cerro/Serru. As Mr. J C Arzu wrote recently, our ancestor Jose Maria Nunez, bought this land in 1889 and our ancestors were required to organize again to retain the property when he passed without an heir in 1923. These are beautiful, fertile and abundant lands. We love them and the people who call this place home.

Letters: Did the water surge from Macal cause three deaths?
It is sad that it takes dead bodies to bring attention to the potential for disaster created by the lack of a workable dam break early warning system for the Chalillo, Vaca and Mollejon dams. It only takes talking to people in the area to realize that there is no general knowledge of what to do if the dam breaks. It took the deaths of two students from Corozal - Egar Puck and Anahi Zepeda, who "were swept off into depths" of the Macal and drowned, to learn that BECOL releases water from the dams, which causes a rise in the water levels in the area of the bridges connecting San Ignacio and Santa Elena. According to Stephen Usher, BECOL's Vice President of Operations, interviewed after the death of the two students earlier this month, Vaca Dam releases water to generate electricity that reaches San Ignacio around 4:00 p.m. But why didn't the public know that information? Just prior to the death of the students, there were two other drownings, one in the Macal River and one a little downstream at Santa Familia where the Macal meets the Mopan River.

Budna recaptured while trying to enter Honduras
Amandala received official confirmation today that Joseph Budna, 33, the Belizean who fled the custody of Guatemalan authorities on Monday while receiving treatment at a Guatemala hospital, has been recaptured. H.E. Alfredo Martinez, Belize's Ambassador in Guatemala, indicated that Budna was recaptured in the Department of Chiquimula, while attempting to enter Honduras. "People in the area recognized his photo and called the police. He was accompanied by two persons who purportedly were 'helping' him cross into Honduras," the Ambassador explained. Prensa Libre's Friday edition quoted Budna as saying that he opted to escape when one of the guards fell asleep and the other was having an affair with a woman who was at the hospital to care for her critically ill husband. Budna said that he planned his escape because of the treatment he was receiving while in prison.

Rival gangs reportedly agree to keep the peace
The escalation of crime, specifically murders and shooting incidents in the Jane Usher Boulevard area of Belize City, presents a dangerous situation which has been a source of concern not only for area residents and Belize City police, but apparently also for Prime Minister and Queen's Square area representative, Hon. Dean Barrow, who said that a meeting was scheduled to take place with the relevant gang personalities today in an effort to take hold of rising tension between streAet elements which control the affected neighborhoods. After exiting a formal event in Belize City this afternoon, Prime Minister Barrow explained that apart from amplifying the police presence, buying additional police weapons and equipment and posting a mobile police unit in the area, law enforcement authorities are also seeking to address the root cause of the problem by applying methods of conflict resolution.

Deaf-mute man, 48, missing
Kelmart Rudolfo Buddan, 48, of Handyside Street, has been reported missing since Holy Thursday, April 17. His family told police that Buddan left home on Handyside Street on Thursday, and that was the last time he was seen. The family said that he is deaf, mute and suffers from fits. He is about 5 feet 9 inches tall, and slimly built, with curly hair. Anyone who knows the whereabouts of Kelmart Rudolfo Buddan is urged to contact the nearest police station, or 0800 922 TIPS, or Jessie Downs at 207 - 5749.

Maya land rights and Bladen Reserve cases on appeal at CCJ
Even as the Government and the Maya communities of Toledo are disputing over petroleum works being undertaken by US Capital in southern Belize, the Caribbean Court of Justice, the country's highest appellate court, has listed for hearing the appeal of the Maya Leaders Alliance and The Toledo Alcaldes Association, as well as 23 Maya villages of Toledo in a claim against the Attorney General of Belize. The Maya have insisted that the Government should respect their rights as indigenous landowners, and put in place systems which recognize their customary land tenure, including the demarcation of ancestral lands, and mechanisms for dialogue which will bring them into the decision-making process before the issuance of logging and petroleum concessions, and other agreements which could infringe or impact on their rights. Meanwhile, the Government is being challenged over its decision to permit hydro-development inside the Bladen Nature Reserve, which has paramount protective status. The case is Ya'axche Conservation Trust versus Wilber Sabido - the Chief Forest Officer, The Attorney General and The Belize Hydroelectric Development Management Co. Ltd.

Belizean-Taiwanese businessman escapes kidnapping attempt in Chetumal
Naturalized Belizean -Taiwanese national Ming Teng Chang, 57, who lives in Chetumal, is injured but alive after two kidnappers posing as prospective customers beat his head with pistol butts and tried to kidnap him by forcing him into a vehicle at about 2:30 p.m. Sunday afternoon. Chang's screams in the Madero and Jose Maria Morelos area of Chetumal, however, drew the neighbors to the scene, and the kidnappers ran away. Chang was then rushed to the hospital, where doctors treated him for the injuries he suffered. According to Diario De Chetumal, Teng Chang was at home that Sunday evening when two men came to his house and knocked on his door and began to enquire about the vehicles he was selling. He reportedly opened his door and came out of his house to show them the vehicles, and that was when the men grabbed him by each arm, and one of the men began to beat him in the head with a pistol butt, and then they tried to put him into their vehicle, but Chang resisted and screamed. The men then threatened to kill him, then drove away from the area.

Maya alcalde accused of sellout to US Capital
There were media reports circulating this week that an alcalde of a Toledo village has been sacked over allegations that he has sold out to the oil company which aims to begin drilling in the south in just a few weeks, but the unfolding dispute raises questions over whether the political administration in Belmopan-which supports oil drilling in the south-can veto such a vote by the Maya community. Under Maya customary law, an alcalde cannot sign away on anything without consultation with the villages. Valentin Maak'in, first alcalde of Conejo Village, has been accused of doing just that. While villagers have voted him out, Maak'in has been advised by an attorney who also serves as Speaker of Parliament-who is also the attorney for the oil company-that the ouster cannot be effective if the Attorney General, who appointed him, was not included in the process. Pablo Mis, spokesperson for the Maya Leaders' Alliance, who detailed the background of what transpired to our newspaper, told us that he was at the meeting in Conejo on Thursday, April 24, to which Maak'in was invited but did not show up. It was at that meeting, said Mis, that villagers voted overwhelmingly to remove him as alcalde.

6.9% increase in water rates takes immediate effect
The next water bills you receive in your mailbox will reflect higher waters, retroactive to April 1, following a decision by the Public Utilities Commission (PUC) this week to approve a 6.9% increase in tariffs for water customers, with the exception of Caye Caulker. For example, the minimum water rate on the mainland will increase from $8.00 to $8.55 for the first 1,000 gallons, but Caye Caulker's rate of $23 for the first 1,000 gallons will remain the same. This increase is expected to net the Belize Water Services (BWS) $39,580,359 over the 12 months ending March 31, 2015, including $14,326 million in capital investments for this annual tariff period (ATP). The PUC notes that BWS had requested the approval of $25,679,000 in capital expenditures for the Annual Tariff Period (ATP) of April 1, 2014, to March 31, 2015, which would have meant a tariff increase of 16.25%. The PUC reduced that figure by $11.35 million.

Gun law, religious law and Alcalde law
I am not a fan of the present gun laws in our country and was excited recently when a group had organized to challenge it and attorneys were planning to place a question before the courts to determine the constitutionality of such law. But sadly, that movement seems to have died off� it needs to be addressed urgently! The recent charges against six persons for two bullets allegedly found at a Belize City residence just bore witness to the injustice of said law and how people would go to desperate measures to now defeat this law. I do believe it is an unjust law that deprives all of their freedom once gun or ammunition is found on a premises. It is unjust because in most cases some of the folks caught in the midst of this catch-all law, are merely visiting, do not ever live there, are minors, persons with no knowledge of the presence of guns or ammunition and also persons in an already abusive situation where that is the only place they have to live.

New BTB Board selected
Last month, former telecoms executive Karen Bevans was officially selected as the new Director of Tourism, and today, the Ministry of Tourism announced that a new Board of Directors - to be headed by current vice president of the Caribbean Development Bank (CDB), Dr. Carla Barnett - has been appointed to manage the affairs of the Belize Tourism Board (BTB) for the period 2014-2016. The newly appointed board is made up of tourism stakeholders representing different sectors of the tourism industry, and according to the Minister of Tourism, Manuel Heredia, Jr., the team is "well-positioned to strengthen the institution and ensure meaningful stakeholder engagement." Comprising the BTB's new Board of Directors are Herbert Haylock, president of the Belize Tourism Industry Association (BTIA); Doug Thompson, representing the Belize Hotel Association; Gaspar Guerrero, representing the local airline sector; Neil Bradley, who serves as a representative of the cayes & outer islands; Glen Eiley, the southern region representative; Rosendo "Chendo" Urbina, Sr., northern region representative; Gamayel Babb, for legal expertise; Christy Maestre, who will be in charge of project management and planning; and Tracy Panton, the Chief Executive Officer (CEO) in the Ministry of Tourism, Culture and Civil Aviation.

Belize developing multimillion-dollar National Transportation Master Plan
The National Transportation Master Plan for Belize was at the center of a senior policy dialogue held Friday morning at the Radisson Fort George Hotel in Belize City. That multimillion-dollar plan is divided into three phases, spanning well beyond the year 2030. Belize has been receiving technical assistance from a team of 10 Korean experts, led by Professor Eui Young Shon of the Department of Transportation Engineering at University of Seoul's Institute of Transport Studies. Senator Joy Audrey Grant, Minister of Energy, Science & Technology and Public Utilities, told the media Friday that the relationship with Korea started about two years ago and they have been meeting ever since. Jung Wook Kim (KDI) - Fellow, Korea Development Institute, told the media that Korea has been working with Belize as part of a knowledge-sharing program sponsored by the Korean government, to help other developing countries. He said that they formally began their collaboration in 2013. The Korean team also includes Seol Joo Kim of Teso Engineering Company.

SCA's '64 grads reflect on history and pay respects to their alma mater
Marion Slusher, 67, describes herself as a "reunion junkie." Her passion has been organizing reunions for her former classmates who graduated with her from St. Catherine Academy in 1964. That was 50 years ago, and her graduating class made history in becoming the first set of girls to attend St. John's College Junior College. Needless to say, their male counterparts were excited to have them come on board! Although they moved from an all-girl to a coed school, they have since taken the time to reunite, and reminisce and reconnect. Their last such gathering was held last Saturday, April 26, 2014. Eighteen 1964 SCA grads attended a Saturday night Mass at Holy Redeemer Church, after which they gathered for a social evening at Slusher's home. They dined together and enjoyed the cabaret sounds of Beverly Swasey. Virginia Foreman entertained them with dance.

From The Publisher
One of the problems with colonialism, for the colonial territory, was that one had to do all of one's trading with the mother country. The colonial tariff structure was such that we in British Honduras had to buy all our goods and machinery from the United Kingdom, and we had to ship most of our mahogany and other hardwoods to Britain at prices the British controlled. A Belize businessman by the name of Bob Turton began to do a lot of import and export business with American companies, and he saw where the colonial tariff structure was designed for Britain's benefit and detrimental to Belize. He therefore supported the anti-colonial movement which called for Belizean self-rule, beginning in 1950. In the years following, the leadership of the ruling People's United Party (PUP) told Belizeans that independence for Belize would bring more development for the country. Three years after independence in 1981, Belizeans voted for their first change of government in the modern political era, replacing the PUP with the United Democratic Party (UDP) in 1984. Since that change of government thirty years ago, the UDP has spent roughly sixteen years in government, and the PUP fourteen.

Editorial: Patience, Belizeans, patience�
When you read the history of the Europeans after they entered/invaded the "New World" in 1492 and how they behaved or misbehaved in the centuries thereafter, the theme of greed is a dominant one. The Europeans wanted gold and silver and precious stones, and after that, using force, they grabbed enormous tracts of land to grow cash crops like sugar cane and cotton. Eventually, they built civilizations in the Western Hemisphere which became dependent on more fossil fuel than the territories which they controlled absolutely, the United States and Canada, could provide. So in the first part of the twentieth century, the New World Europeans used all their military and financial power to bring Saudi Arabia and other oil-rich Middle East countries into line, so to speak. They had to have the Saudi and Middle East oil, because their Western economies and lifestyle demanded excessive amounts of energy. From the time the first contact took place between the European Columbus and the indigenous people of the Caribbean islands, there was a conflict in philosophical perspective. The Europeans wanted wealth, they wanted it quickly, and they did not care what the consequences were for mother earth. The indigenous people, wherever they lived in the Western Hemisphere, had an approach to life which emphasized the sustainability of their food production and dwelling construction, and an abiding respect for the blessed bounty of the earth which had given them life, for generations and generations and generations. There was a patience in the indigenous people, and there was wisdom.

Mayor Darrell Bradley's eyes still on Santi's seat in Caribbean Shores
Belize City Mayor Darrell Bradley, 35, may be out of the mayoral race for the 2015 municipal elections, but that is because the mayor seems not to be interested in municipal politics any longer. He is eyeing a seat in Parliament, and he told Amandala today that he is working hard in the Caribbean Shores division to galvanize the popular support he needs to win his party's divisional convention and capture that seat when general elections are called some years from now. Speaking with the media on Friday, leader of the United Democratic Party, Prime Minister Dean Barrow, told journalists that it is a pity that Bradley did not submit his name for the mayoral race. "I still am not sure whether it is because he honestly did not want to stand for reelection, or whether there is more to it than that," Barrow said. He spoke highly of Bradley's work saying, "I will yield to no man in my admiration for his accomplishments, but as one television station said, 'you never know from one day to the next exactly what the position is.'"

Cpl. Gino Peck escaped jail; Special Constable Jose Haylock didn't!
A Police Special Constable, Jose Haylock, who was on trial for possession of an unlicensed firearm and ammunition, was sentenced to five years in prison on Friday after he changed his not guilty plea to guilty when the prosecution presented video evidence linking him to the firearm and ammunition that police found at his home. Haylock's live-in girlfriend was also charged with the same offences. But there was no evidence that she had knowledge of his illegal stash, so Chief Magistrate Ann Marie Smith dismissed the charges against her, after their attorney Arthur Saldivar made a no case to answer submission on her behalf. Jose Haylock and his common-law wife, Corrine Diane Martinez, were charged after a Gang Suppression Unit search of their home at 3716 Louise Bevans Street on the evening of February 11, 2012, resulted in the discovery of a .22 pistol loaded with ten rounds, and eleven .9mm rounds, for which Haylock could not produce a license. He was consequently charged with one count of possession of a firearm without a license and two counts of possession of ammunition without a license.

Security guard in police lockdown for six days on a single firearm charge
A security guard who has been accused of being in possession of unlicensed ammunition spent a marathon six days in police custody before he was brought before a Magistrate today, Monday, for arraignment, prompting his attorney to make a submission to the court about the violation of his constitutional rights. For three consecutive days, since police detained him, the family of security guard Mauricio Perez, 34, has been making trips to the Magistrate's Court in the hopes of seeing him brought to court. But on Friday, when he was not brought to court, the family decided to seek legal help and retained attorney Nazira Espat-Myles from the law firm of M.H. Chebat and Co. Police arrested Perez on Tuesday, April 22, on the allegation that he illegally kept a black .9mm magazine with seven rounds - five of a Luger brand and two of an Aguila brand.

15-year-old detained for Patrick Bevans' murder, but later released
Amandala understands that Belize City police had detained a 15-year-old minor in connection with the murder of Patrick Bevans, 22, which occurred early Wednesday morning, April 23, in the Port Loyola area, but that suspect was later released from custody without being charged. Bevans - whose family told us that he was on crutches at the time of his murder - was shot multiple times in the head and body at around 7:00 a.m. as he was making his way back home after buying from a nearby store on MS Street just a short distance from his Louise Bevans Street home. Bevans' murder was the third in the area in three weeks, and residents believe that it was due to increasing tensions instigated by affiliates of two notorious city gangs - one of which is allegedly trying to carry out a so-called "takeover" of the Jane Usher Boulevard Area.

Death and mourning continue after Holy Week
There were three separate deaths - in Punta Gorda, San Pedro and Santa Elena, Cayo, respectively - over the weekend following Holy Week. On Saturday afternoon, Jonathan Reque�a, 14, of 9th Street, San Ignacio Town, drowned in the Macal River. After he was taken out of the river, rescuers conducted chest compressions on him, but he was already dead. The body was taken to the morgue at the San Ignacio Hospital to await a post-mortem to certify the cause of his death. According to police, at about 3:30 Saturday afternoon they responded to reports of a drowning and visited the Macal River in an area between the Hawksworth Bridge and a nearby board bridge where they saw the body of Jonathan Reque�a lying face-up on the banks of the river. Police reported that Reque�a and his friend, 16, were swimming in the Macal River when he went under the water and did not resurface. His body was later found a little after 3:00 that same Saturday afternoon.

Man found with 455 grams of weed in Corozal
A Corozal man was busted with 455 grams of weed by police who stopped and searched him in the South End area of Corozal at about 3:00 this morning. Police said that they were on patrol when they saw a man walking on the road, and he was acting suspiciously when he saw them. They immediately stopped and conducted a random search on the man, and found, in the front pocket of his pants, two transparent parcels containing cannabis. The man and the cannabis were taken to the Corozal Police Station, where the man was arrested and charged with drug trafficking. The weed was weighed and it amounted to 455 grams.

Elvis Hamilton, Jr., 25, charged for burglarizing home
A man employed as a caretaker for Richard Michael Estephan, Jr., a resident of 7 North End Estate in Belize City, appeared before Senior Magistrate Sharon Frazer on Friday and pleaded not guilty to one count of burglary in connection with the disappearance of his employer's BMW key and a 21-inch flat screen television set. Elvis Hamilton, Jr., 25, appeared unrepresented and tried to explain to the Senior Magistrate the events that transpired that led to the allegation against him. But Frazer told him that he had already pleaded not guilty and he should leave his defense until his matter goes to trial. When the question arose of whether nor not bail should be granted to Hamilton, the court's prosecutor objected to bail on the ground that the police are still investigating the burglary, and that none of the stolen items have been recovered. The prosecutor also told the court that the accused man knows the complainant well and might harass or threaten him or his family.

Garth Longsworth, 31, charged with raping minor, 16
A Belize City resident who works as a marketing manager was formally arrested and charged for rape in the San Ignacio Magistrate's Court yesterday following a report which was made in March by a 16-year-old female minor who resides in the western town of San Ignacio. According to San Ignacio police, Garth Longsworth, 31, of a Cran Street address in Belize City, was apprehended following a report by the young woman, who said she was walking home at around 10:00 p.m. on March 7, 2014, on Bullet Tree Road in San Ignacio, and upon reaching near a pharmacy at the corner with Joseph Andrews Drive, she was suddenly approached from behind and dragged to the rear of the pharmacy building.

Blue Saturn car stolen from owner's home on Vernon Street
Earl Gentle, Sr., of Vernon Street, is without his blue 4-door Saturn car with license plate BZC 35657, after the car was stolen from in front of his house. Gentle has been all over the city trying to recover his car, but to no avail. Gentle told Amandala that he drove home at about 1:45 Sunday morning and parked his car in front of his house. He then went to bed. When he awoke at about 8:00 that same Sunday morning, Gentle saw that his car had disappeared. Gentle checked in the neighborhood, and now throughout the city, but his efforts were in vain.

4,600 grams of weed confiscated onboard bus
Over 3,800 grams of marijuana was confiscated from two passenger buses travelling to the city from the west by police on anti-drug operations that were conducted on Friday, April 25, on the George Price Highway. Police said that at a checkpoint at about 10:30 Friday morning, they stopped and boarded a bus travelling to the city from the west and conducted a random search for drugs, guns or ammunition. The search led to the discovery of a black bag under a seat, and inside the bag was marijuana which weighed 1,800 grams. No one was arrested. Shortly after, at about 1:00 that afternoon, police officers stopped and boarded another passenger bus at the vehicle checkpoint on the George Price Highway, and again marijuana was found. Police said that they came across a school bag under a seat in the rear of the bus and when it was opened, they found that it was loaded with cannabis.

Prisoner shot during escape attempt
A prison inmate who tried to escape from the Belize Central Prison was shot in the buttocks by vigilant prison officers. Marcos Gomez of Trial Farm, Orange Walk, who is serving a 12-month sentence for theft, is now recovering at the Karl Heusner Memorial Hospital. The incident occurred at about 10:15 a.m. yesterday morning, Monday. Chief Executive Officer at the Kolbe Foundation, Earl Jones, told reporters that at about 10:15 a.m. yesterday morning, inmate Marcus Gomez attempted to escape from the Belize Central Prison. Prison officers who saw what was happening quickly reacted and shot the escaping prisoner in the buttocks. Gomez was taken to the medical unit at the facility, after which he was taken to the Karl Heusner Memorial Hospital for further treatment.

Jane Doe not yet identified
The unknown woman whose decomposing corpse was found floating in the Quintal Lagoon on the Chan Chen Road on Tuesday last week, still has not been identified. Police, who have begun an investigation said that four men were detained and interviewed, but were released from custody, and they are back to square one in the investigation. Superintendent Andrew Ramirez, Commander of Corozal Police, said that the woman was in her twenties, was of dark complexion and her toes were painted with orange nail polish. She also had two silver crowns on her two front teeth. He said that the woman was not killed in the area, and that her right hand was bitten off by crocodiles.

Gunmen attack residents in San Juan area of San Pedro
Some men who were on a golf cart in front of a house on Canister Street in the San Juan area of San Pedro are lucky to be alive after gunmen opened fire on them at about 9:30 Thursday night, sending people in the area scrambling for cover. The gunmen escaped in a boat. No one was hit, but those who were in the area were traumatized and there were bullet holes in several golf carts and homes. Police who processed the scene announced that twelve 9mm expended shells were found The incident occurred in front of the Campos' residence, but no one was there at the time. Witnesses told police that six armed, masked men, wearing black clothing, came from the mangrove area along the lagoon side, to in front of the Campos' house, where two golf carts, in each of which there were some men, were parked. The gunmen then began firing at the men. The police reported that no one was injured in the shooting, which, according to police, was drug-related.

2 Belize City men elude firing gunman
Yesterday, two men who were riding in the Port Loyola area of Belize City luckily escaped the lethal bullets of a lone gunman who let off a hail of shots in their direction as they traveled on Freedom Street just before midday. Police said that they visited Freedom Street in Belize City yesterday, April 24, at about 11:35 a.m., and observed seven expended shells on the street. Their investigations later revealed that at about 11:25 that morning, Jermaine Ottley, 18, a student of Freedom Street Extension in Belize City, was riding with Paul Sambula on separate bicycles on Freedom Street when they were approached by a brown-complexioned man wearing a blue T-shirt and short khaki pants who was also riding a bicycle.

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Ministry outlines way forward on pharmacy dispute
The Ministry of Health continues to defend its position with regard to its actions on appointing an extended regime to supervise the signing of Customs entries for importation of pharmaceuticals into Belize. Currently the only person authorized to sign for the Ministry is Chief Pharmacist Sharon Sanchez Anderson. But the Ministry wants to change that. CEO Dr. Peter Allen says the final call on adding additional persons to the list is pending. He indicated that he would further consult before making the changes while insisting that they are necessary. Our interview was extensive but we do have two more important pieces of news to report.

Belize Tourism Expo (BETEX) is Next Week
The Belize Tourism Expo (BETEX) which is organized by the Belize Tourism Industry Association (BTIA) is scheduled to commence next week from May 7-9 2014 at the Princess Hotel in Belize City. BETEX is a business-to-business event that showcases Belize's travel destinations, hotels, tour operators, and other tourism service providers and attracts more than 350 local and international tourism professionals and press representatives. The event is an exclusive opportunity for international traveler resellers to meet, network, negotiate and conduct business with local travel suppliers and to learn more about Belize and experience the destination first hand. BETEX was first organized in 1996 and since then it has been held every two years in Belize. The last expo was held in 2012 and businesses from around Belize that were present were: The Lodge at Big Falls, Hatchet Caye Resort, Hamanasi Adventure and Dive Resort, Programme for Belize, San Ignacio Resort and Cahal Pech Village Resort to mention a few.

Corozal chooses its Spelling Bee champion
The competitors for the 20th annual National Coca Cola Spelling Bee competition have all been chosen. The last District Final was held today at the Corozal Community College Auditorium. At the end of the competition, Arbaz Khan from Corozal Methodist School emerged as the top speller for the Corozal district. The runner up is Christiline Hill from the Corozal Seventh Day Adventist School. Since the Zone Eliminations started, over 500 students were involved in the competition, seeking to become the spelling champion for Belize.

Princess Hotel joins Ramada chain
It was once the Ramada Royal Reef Hotel, but after a change in ownership to Turkish group Princess Hotels International it became known as the Princess Hotel and Casino. Today, its management announced that it is coming home, of sorts, as it once again assumes the name Ramada after agreeing to join that world-famous chain, which has operated in 53 countries. Ramada, since 1990, has been a subsidiary of the largest hotel group in the world, Wyndham of New Jersey, U.S.A., which owns over 7,200 hotels worldwide. General Manager of Princess, Erol Olcan, says the hotel will take advantage of the Ramada brand and be able to better access customers in key areas. The casino portion of the hotel is separately managed but is included in the Ramada co-branding.

Coye family goes to court to get its money back
The Coye family would like nothing more than to move on from an ordeal that cost them their father and several years of their lives. Melonie Coye and her family were acquitted on appeal to the Court of Appeal on money laundering charges two months ago. But today they were back in the Supreme Court seeking its approval to unfreeze the family's assets which were seized by the Financial Intelligence Unit (FIU) at the start of its prosecution five years ago. Attorney Arthur Saldivar initially refused the press an interview on the grounds of preserving their privacy. But he relented and forcefully made his case for why the money should be returned. According to Saldivar, the monies in question, which he did not quantify, are separate from the $1.5 million taken from the family's Johnson Street residence on New Years' Eve, 2009 which was ordered to be returned by the court. Some of the accounts date back to 1965, he said, in the name of late family patriarch Michael Coye.

Labour Department hosts open day
Thursday is Labour Day, a time to honor the working class of the society. On this last working day before the holiday, the Labour Department hosted countrywide open day sessions to show the general public what work it does. Senior labour officer Calbert Barber told us that the Department's chief work is to promote labour rights of workers, especially those in special conditions - sick, unlawfully terminated, disabled, unemployed, pregnant, or even dead. However, he noted that the worker should take more of an interest in becoming knowledgable about what rights they have under the law.

Nurse avoids jail on ammo and weed charges
Back on April 14, six persons were taken to court for possession of unlicensed ammunition and controlled substances following a Police search of a house on Far West Street on Sunday. Nicoli Rhys, 23 of Euphrates Avenue; Rheonna Rivero, an 18 year old student; Shane McKoy, 27; and Godwin Neal, Jr., an 18 year old student, along with a 17 year old minor who was also a student, were remanded after being charged with possession of 2 9mm brass Luger brand bullets and 1.2 grams of cannabis located in a compartment inside a standing fan. A sixth person, nurse Bernadette Samuels, had to be taken to Karl Heusner Memorial hospital from court to be treated for high blood pressure and she has been in hospital since, until she was arraigned today. In addition to the above charges, she was additionally charged for possession of 4.4 grams of cannabis seeds. Samuels works at the KHMH but was a patient until today, when she was brought to court by attorney Bryan Neal.

National Song Competition launched
This afternoon the National Song Competition 2014 was launched by the National Celebrations Commission in Belize City. It has a different look this year as part of efforts to improve the professionalism of performers and the quality of the songs presented. NICH Creative Arts Development Officer Joseph Stamp Romero says the competition will be decided by on-stage performances in regional finals followed by a national final on August 9. As per usual there are two categories, the Belize (formerly Patriotic) Song Competition and the Carnival Song Competition but for the first time, a viewer's choice and breakout performer of the year award are being offered.

U.S. Capital carries on with work in Sarstoon Temash
The Forest Department has confirmed with U.S. Capital Energy that it has decided to waive the expiration date of today, April 30, 2014, contained in the permit granted to the company to conduct petroleum exploration operations in the Sarstoon Temash National Park. Because it was ordered to by Supreme Court Justice Michelle Arana, the Government is proceeding to arrange for consultation with the Maya communities most affected by the work. Chief Forest Officer Wilber Sabido and National Parks Administrator Hannah St. Luce-Martinez, wrote Alistair King, U.S. Capital's representative, this week, saying that they consider it appropriate in their discretion, to defer deciding on the application for an extension until the outcome of the consultations is known, provided that the operations for which the permit is granted continue as they were not specifically stopped by Justice Arana. Today we spoke with attorney for U.S. Capital Michael Peyrefitte who says this essentially confirms the status quo: the company can proceed because the permit was not struck down by Justice Arana, making their presence and activities legal; and there is presently no injunction stopping them (although attorneys for SATIIM have applied for the third time for an injunction, this time post-judgment following Justice Arana's decision on April 3.)

Five parents sue KHMH over dead babies
Nearly one year ago, several families experienced heart-wrenching pain when they lost their newborn premature babies to a bacteria that was somehow allowed inside the Neonatal Intensive Care Unit. There have been plans to upgrade the facility but no one - the hospital, the Government or those in authority - has stepped forward to address the personal pain of these families. Thirteen babies died, of which the deaths of eight were officially claimed to have been caused by the bacteria. Now, five women are suing those involved. Their attorney is Kareem Musa, who says the hospital has refused to release key medical records or otherwise respond to the case beyond preparing to file a defense.

Penner prosecution encounters roadblocks, says private prosecutor
The continued prosecution of Elvin Penner has endured a torturous history over the last eight months. As predicted by Prime Minister Dean Barrow, his opponents are having a difficult time finding anything that will stick on the ex-Minister of State. But that, according to private prosecuting attorney on behalf of COLA, Kareem Musa, is because the Government is playing keep-away with the results of its investigation. Commissioner of Police Allen Whylie continues to refuse to release the results of his investigation and is suing to overturn the decision of Chief Justice Kenneth Benjamin that he continue that investigation over his insistence that he would not. Musa says they had been hoping for better from Auditor General Dorothy Bradley but so far that too has been a dead end. She has written him claiming that she is unable to release the details of her investigation as it is exempt under the Freedom of Information Act.

Matron Roberts Polyclinic recognized for best performance
It is the oldest health facility in Belize and has faithfully served generations of residents of the Old Capital. Today the Matron Roberts Polyclinic II received an award from the Ministry of Health for outstanding performance in obtaining the highest scores as a National Health Insurance (NHI) Primary Care Provider (PCP) facility in the Southside Belize City area for 2013. CEO Dr. Peter Allen in presenting the award paid tribute to the staff's care of the more than 55,000 patients of the clinic in 2013. The award was accepted by Alexy Rosado, polyclinic administrator, on behalf of the staff and administration of the Polyclinic. In receiving the award, Ms. Rosado expressed her gratitude to all partners who work along with the polyclinic to promote the continued growth over the years.

Man missing at sea after kayak capsizes near Belize Barrier Reef
The sea search continues for an American man who was thrown into the Caribbean Sea when a kayak he was in capsized in rough seas on Tuesday afternoon. 29 year old Shane Leesman is listed as missing at sea. A second man who was in the same kayak, Bradley Evans Josker, was rescued by the Belize National Coast Guard. Josker told police in San Pedro town that he and Leesman had gone kayaking arounf midday on Tuesday but encountered rough seas as they approached the Belize Barrier Reef. They decided to turn back and head to shore; but Josker says that they were hit by a wave which caused the kayak to capsize throwing himself and Leesman into the water. Josker says that he and Leesman tried for ten minutes to get back into the kayak but they could not. After a second wave hit the two men, they became separated. Josker says that he tried to swim towards the shore but the current kept pulling him over the reef before being rescued by the Belize National Coast Guard. Police say Shane Leesman is of Caucasian decent, is 5 feet, 8 inches tall and weighs about 170 pounds. Leesman has a sleeve tattoo on his arm and was last seen wearing only a white swim shorts.

Dog mauls 5 year old boy in Santa Elena town
A 5 year old boy from Santa Elena town, Cayo was viciously attacked by dog this afternoon. According to reports received, the little boy, identified as Christopher Jones was playing in a yard on Zaiden Street in Santa Elena town when he was mauled by the dog. One person who witnessed the aftermath of the mauling said that the boy was bitten and torn up badly, mostly in his head. The witness describe the aftermath as "horrifying." The attack, according to reports, was so bad that the boy's scalp was ripped and he had several holes in his face, apparently teeth marks from the dog.

Two year old dies; poisoning suspected
A two year old boy from Orange Walk town is dead and it appears that he ingested some kind of poisonous substance. The child has been identified as Justice Usher, a resident of the Belize/Corozal Road. The child's mother says little Justice was in the yard playing as she was doing laundry and hanging out clothes to dry around 10:30 this morning. The mother says that after a while she realized that Justice was missing and then heard him crying. She said that when she went to check on him, she smelled a strong scent, believed to be that of termite poison, coming from the child.


Mobile Testing outreach on Ambergris Caye
The National AIDS Commission (NAC) /Country Coordinating Mechanism (CCM) Island Committee along with PASMO carried out several community outreach activities on Ambergris Caye in the month of April. The month of activities culminated on Saturday April 26th with a Mobile Testing outreach. In the weeks leading up to the26th, Dennis Craft; PASMO Educator along with volunteers from the NAC CCM Island Committee visited various sites on the island and provided sexual health education, HIV transmission prevention, Sexually Transmitted Infection education along with Risk Reduction activities. Along with health care professionals from the Dr. Otto Rodriguez II Polyclinic and a member from the Unites States Peace Corp, NAC/CCM Island Committee and PASMO tested 57 individuals on Saturday April 26th of which 11 were females and 46 were males.

A Walk Around San Pedro Town: Art, Signs, Lunch, A Hummer Golf Cart and My Weekend Plans
San Pedro has some beautiful hand painted signs. They add so much to the charm of the town. (If I was in charge, they would be mandated. A beautification project. But sadly, I am not�) Yesterday I was in town for some errands, some lunch and�one of my least favorite things to do�.going to the bank. Here in Belize, bank systems are just starting to be automated and on-line options are limited. Much of the population spends maybe an hour? Or if you own a business, probably more standing in line at your local bank. Hey�at least it's air conditioned. Here are some pictures around town yesterday. My very favorite grocery store - The Greenhouse. Great for shopping for necessities and many things you didn't know you needed. Yesterday I was eyeballing some delicious looking angel food cakes and frozen key lime pie (covered in dark chocolate) on a stick!

"Happy" in San Pedro, Ambergris Caye, Belize.
Ever since Ziggy's blogging experience on Sunday I've had a real job of wresting my iPad from him. Fame (OK fame with a small 'f') has gone to his head! His first attempt at blogging wasn't bad. Not as good as mine (sic) but not bad � and with a bit more practice I'm sure he'll improve. But he now considers himself an island, no, a Belizean, celebrity. He's got his own Facebook page (you'll find him at Ziggy Belize) and it won't be long before his got more friends than me (not too difficult you're thinking). There's a definite spring in his step and the constant standing in front of the full length mirror is starting to grate a little but this prancing and preening on his part does have its upsides. He wants to look good and this played right in to our hands when it was time to give his first bath on Sunday.

Chocolate Potato Cake
I love recipes that call for abnormal ingredients that I wouldn't normally think would go in the recipe. The secret ingredient in this dish that makes it special is mashed potatoes. You will absolutely love this chocolate cake. It is dense and moist and the frosting is satiny and delicious.

Occasional Discourse on the Nigger Question (Historical Documentary)
This documentary by the BBC looks at Scientific Racism, invented during the 19th century, an ideology that drew on now discredited practices such as phrenology and provided an ideological justification for racism and slavery. These theories ultimately led to eugenics and racial policies of the "master" race. Herbert Spencer, the father of Social Darwinism as an ethical theory, was thinking in terms of elitist, "might makes right" sorts of views long before Darwin published his theory. However, Spencer quickly adapted Darwinian ideas to his own ethical theories. The concept of adaptation allowed him to claim that the rich and powerful were better adapted to the social and economic climate of the time, and the concept of natural selection allowed him to argue that it was natural, normal, and proper for the strong to thrive at the expense of the weak. After all, he claimed, that is exactly what goes on in nature every day. However, Spencer did not just present his theories as placing humans on a parallel with nature. Not only was survival of the fittest natural, but it was also morally correct. Indeed, some extreme Social Darwinists argued that it was morally incorrect to assist those weaker than oneself, since that would be promoting the survival and possible reproduction of someone who was fundamentally unfit.

Why I Love Laughing Bird Caye in Belize
A beautiful and stunning Belizean Isle, Laughing Bird Caye is located 11 miles from Placencia Village in Southern Belize and is an ideal base for snorkeling and scuba diving. In fact, almost all travelers who vacation in Placencia visit this gorgeous piece of paradise for a full day of diving, snorkeling, sea kayaking and even picnicking. Laughing Bird Caye got its name from the Laughing Gulls - the birds that once used to breed on the Caye, however due to a growing human presence, the colonies moved to a nearby undisturbed Caye for breeding. Presently, the Island is home to a number of exotic birds like the brown pelican, green heron, and melodious blackbird. The island stands on an elongated ridge of reef known as faro which is an angular atoll on a continental shelf, also known as shelf atoll, and is an important part of the Belize Barrier Reef System. Last year in August, I stayed at Chabil Mar, a luxurious and elegant resort in Placencia and took a day trip with Splash Belize to explore Laughing Bird Caye. I departed Placencia Village around 9am and arrived at this beautiful island an hour later to be astonished by the natural beauty of the atoll. I discovered a white sandy beach, scattered coconut trees and mangroves and a number of interesting plants like the spider lily, seaside purslane, morning glory and black mangrove in the 1.4 acre island. "This reserve was declared a protected area on December 21, 1991 and is managed by the Placencia based community, Friends of Nature," announced our guide when we were stepping out of the boat.

Best Belize Wedding Photos of 2014
Looking for your dream destination wedding? A honeymoon you'll rave about for years? At Chabil Mar Villas, you can have that and more for a truly once-in-a-lifetime event. Here, see the top wedding photos of 2014:

5 Observations About Food in Belize
Staying physically healthy is an important aspect of living an overall happy life. With issues like chemicals/GMOs in food and the rising cost of health care, many people are looking for alternative ways to stay healthy. Before arriving in Belize, I assumed that Tropical Paradise = Totally Healthy Lifestyle. True? Hmm� Yes, and no. My opinion: it's possible to eat healthy here, but it's also very easy to slide into some bad habits when it comes time to fill your bucket. In general, it's always best to know where your food comes from, start with the most basic, whole ingredients for preparing meals, and strive for a balanced diet rich in fruits and vegetables. I LOVE the cuisine, which is as varied as the people who settled here. As a result of this amazing diversity, Belize foods can have the flavors of Caribbean, Mexican, African, Mayan, and Spanish cultures. Since becoming more of a melting pot with the arrival of North American, European, and other expats, additional options are available, like American burgers and pizza and spicy curry dishes from India. If you're thinking about moving to Belize, either permanently or for a temporary travel break like ours, you should know a few things about the food here. I'm not a farmer, doctor, or nutritionist - just someone who eats. Here are some of my humble observations:

International Sources

Mexico hosts the Third Mexico-CARICOM Summit and the Sixth Summit of the Association of Caribbean States.
Both forums will be held in Merida, Yucatan, and led by President Enrique Pe�a Nieto, along with heads of state and government of the region. � They will discuss trade, tourism, cooperation, sustainable development and disaster risk reduction. The city of Merida, Yucatan will host the 3rd Mexico-CARICOM Summit and the 6th Summit of the Association of Caribbean States (ACS) on April 29-30. President Enrique Pena Nieto will preside over the summits, along with heads of state and government of the region, which aims to enhance regional integration and cooperation. At the Mexico-CARICOM Summit on Tuesday, April 29, President Pe�a Nieto will meet with his counterparts from the Member States of the Caribbean Community to give continuity to the cooperation program and to find new priorities for the Caribbean.

Mexico pledges continuing support for Caribbean
Mexican President Enrique Pena Nieto says his country is proud of its relations with the Caribbean, with which it has "a shared vision of development and unity." He made the declaration ahead of Tuesday's opening of a historic "double summit" of Caribbean and Latin American leaders of states belonging to the Association of Caribbean States and the Caribbean Community (CARICOM). His country holds the presidency of the ACS and the Mexican leader, as host, took the opportunity to explain his country's view of its relationship with "the Greater Caribbean", as well as to outline some of the issues to be discussed when the Latin American and Caribbean leaders meet for two days of talks on Tuesday and Wednesday in the Mexican city of Merida. According to Pena Nieto, "Mexico has close historical and cultural ties with the Caribbean nations." He described the nature of the ties as "bonds that fill us with pride."

Kauai town's eateries no longer use plastic foam
Not one restaurant in Kilauea on Kauai's north shore uses plastic foam disposable containers. Starting this week there are two signs at the entrance to the town saying "Welcome to Kilauea. A Styrofoam Free Community." The Garden Island newspaper reports the designation is the result of a campaign by the Surfrider Foundation and Zero Waste Kauai to stop eateries from using non-biodegradable containers. Surfrider Foundation Kauai Chapter Treasurer Gordon LaBedz says plastics - including Styrofoam - present litter, pollution and health problems. The foundation says plastics break down into small particles that persist in the ocean, absorb toxins and enter the food chain through fish and other marine life. Thirty-five percent of the nearly 250 restaurants on Kauai have already done away with single-use plastic to-go containers.

Living the Dream in Balmy Belize
Nadege Thomas lived in Toronto, Canada for 22 years where she was a successful financial planner. But as the pressures on her sector mounted and the cold weather wore her down, she began to yearn for an easy life in a balmy, tropical environment. "After 22 Canadian winters, I had had enough of the cold and was looking for a warm place," she says. For as long as Nadege could remember she'd envisioned one day owning and operating a resort hotel or B&B and today, she and her husband, Tom, run the Mystic River Resort in sunny Belize. Nadege likens it to living in paradise. She is enchanted by the wild verdant jungle, meandering rivers, Maya history, lush vegetation, and abundant produce. They live comfortably and-during slower times-they regularly take jaunts to the U.S. and Canada. The couple met in Belize and began the project together. Tom had come from Oklahoma in 1991 and become a Belizean citizen.

UD grad mines the world for medicine
In Belize, Central America, Balick established the Belize Ethnobotany Project with Dr. Rosita Arvigo, a local physician and resident. The Project joined with the National Cancer Institute to collect medicinal plants in Belize to be tested for potential anti-cancer properties. The Project has also hosted several traditional healers' conferences. "We can say in some parts of the world, such as in Belize, people are starting to stand up for their roots," says Balick, who figures worldwide, there are at least 30,000 medicinal plant species used by local cultures. In Belize, one of those plants is the gumbo-limbo tree and it has a symbiotic relationship with another plant. "The bark has a creamy resin on the inside that will stop a rash caused by the poison wood tree," says Balick. The sap is also effective for sunburn, insect bites, and other skin irritants. The relationship reminds Balick, a Delaware native, of walking the local woods as a boy near his home in northern New Castle County. He knew that if scratched by stinging nettles, he could pluck some nearby jewelweed and rub its juice on the emerging rash to quell it.

Olson Engage: Agency Business Report 2014
Olson Engage enjoyed a very successful 2013, culminating with its Midsize PR Agency of the Year and overall PR Agency of the Year victories at the 2014 PRWeek Awards this past March. On top of its 14.5% year-over-year revenue increase in 2013, Olson Engage kept busy with a slew of account wins, new hires, an agency rebrand, and an acquisition. President Bryan Specht attributes the majority of the firm's accomplishments to the staff. "At the end of the day, it's about great talent delivering phenomenal work," he says. "It's a simple formula and sometimes people tend to overthink it." New business last year, which makes up about 75% of the agency's growth, included Mars petfood brand Royal Canin, Belize Tourism Board,, and global work for McDonald's. This year, the firm won Kraft Foods' Planters account, replacing incumbent Edelman.

Conclusions of Mexico - CARICOM and ACS Summits
The city of M�rida Yucatan hosted the Third Mexico - CARICOM Summit and also the VI Summit of the Association of Caribbean States (ACS), forums on April 29th and 30th 2014. These forums were led by Enrique Pe�a Nieto, along with chiefs of state and the state government. These summits will impulse the development of regional integration and cooperation. On Tuesday, April 29, aiming the development of Mexico - Caricom Summit III, President Pe�a Nieto met with the representatives of the States Members of the Caribbean Community, with the goal of continuing programs of cooperation and to identify new areas of interest in the Caribbean. It was reported that the leaders reviewed the Program of Technical and Scientific Cooperation 2012-2013, they also discussed the progress in natural disasters prevention, and developed a new program of cooperation for the evolution of agricultural progress in the Caribbean.

IL Radio Episode 42: Finding Paradise on Ambergris Caye, Belize
Ann Kuffner first started dreaming of living in Belize full-time when she was in her 20s�but it wasn't until six years ago, at the age of 57, that she finally left behind the corporate life in the U.S. to enjoy all that the Caribbean island of Ambergris Caye has to offer. Dan Prescher caught up with Ann to ask her what it was that drew her to Ambergris Caye�what her everyday life is like�and how you could follow in her footsteps.


Video: Belize Holy Cross Dance 2014, 4min.
Holy Cross' Standard VI (8th grade) rehearsal for the Belizean Day of the Arts 2014. They are performing to Katy Parry's "Roar" and Matthew West's "Hello My Name Is." This dance features a parachute designed and constructed specifically for Holy Cross by Raven Industries in Sioux Falls, SD.

Video: TIDE Tours Chocolate Tour Belize, 6min.
This tour takes place in the Toledo District of Belize , Central America

Video: My Belize Diving Trip, 4min.
This video was shot in my diving trip to Belize, using my Iphone 5s and its underwater housing. I edited them together just for fun. Thanks my diving guides Watter, Edgar, buddies Jun, Chris and Scott for taking videos of me. Thanks Bobby for suggesting the music. You are all great! Belize is a nice place for diving, and it's famous for Blue Hole. My favorite diving sites were Turneffe and Lighthouse.

The Marine Conservation Expeditions (MCE) world class team of filmmakers shot, edited and broadcasted this film on location with live events during Reef Week. 'Reefs In The Balance' was showcased at two local outreach events. The first in Placencia and the second in Belize city at which hundreds of local people attended. The film was also and shown on national television. Appealing to truly adventurous and influential people wanting more from their precious travel time, MCE´s filmmaking expeditions give individuals the unique chance to work with a dream team of international filmmaking talent on documentaries that leave potent environmental and social legacies. Our primary objective is to create films and outreach events that inspire local participation in marine conservation. With world class talent, we contribute professional media that directly supports local outreach efforts.

Video: Avioneta en Belize, 4min.
Viaje en avioneta de Belize City a Placencia con Air Tropic.

Video: Een donkere jungletocht door Belize, 4min.
Chris Zegers is in Belize en maakt 's nachts een tocht door de jungle om de meest angstaanjagende dieren van het land te ontdekken.

Video: Lamanai: een prachtige Maya-tempel in Belize, 3min.
Chris Zegers verblijft in de Lamanai Lodge en bezoekt de mooiste Maya-plek van heel Belize: de Lamanai. Hij beklimt de stenen jaguar en laat zich veroveren door de schoonheid van Belize.

Video: Scuba Diving 2014 - Scuba Diving in Belize Beautiful, 23min.

Video: Belize 2013, 9min.
Scuba diving and The Great Blue Hole

Video: Belize 2014, 7min.
a few photos and videos we shot while in West Belize, Cayo district

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