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Today's Belize News: September 4, 2014 #495340
09/04/14 06:10 AM
09/04/14 06:10 AM
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Specials and Events

Last night's TV news on Channel 7, Channel 5 and CTV 3
Also with the most recent Open Your Eyes, and the Dickie Bradley Specials

The San Pedro Sun

US Embassy hosts business industry meeting on Ambergris Caye
The United States of America (USA) Ambassador to Belize, His Excellency Carlos Moreno, met on Friday August 29th with members of the business and American communities on Ambergris Caye. The roundtable discussion, held at Banyan Bay Resort, was geared to educate and inform the business community and American citizens about the new US tax system as it relates to the Internal Revenue Service (IRS). The meeting was held in partnership with the Belize Tourism Industry Association (BTIA). In his remarks, Ambassador Moreno informed the gathering that looking back at his last visit to Ambergris Caye in May of 2011, the island has developed, and likewise businesses, on the island. He explained that the US government is interested in supporting genuine businesses. “The US government is interested in helping Belize develop its economy… we support business initiative that are socially responsible and that conduct transactions in an ethical way. In that respect, we are willing to help and support businesses here.”

World Suicide Prevention Day 2014
In observance of World Suicide Prevention Day on Wednesday, September 10, 2014, the Ministry of Health is encouraging Belizeans to light a candle near a window in their homes at 8:00 p.m. on that day. Suicide is a serious public health problem, but is also a preventable one. The World Health Organization estimates that every year around 800,000 people commit suicide. Statistics from the Ministry of Health indicate that the suicide rate for Belize is 5.3 per 100,000, which is one of the lowest among Central American countries.

The Government House- Belize House of Culture
With exquisite colonial architecture and an even richer history, the House of Culture, better known as the Government House, is one of the most important buildings in Belize. Located on Regent Street in Belize City, the building was erected in 1814 when Belize was still British Honduras and under British rule. It was the residence of the Governor General (the British Monarchy representative) until 1998, when The Government House was opened to the public and renamed the House of Culture. It was at the Government House where the Union Jack was lowered, and the Belize flag was raised for the first time on September 21, 1981 cementing our independence from our mother country. Read more: The Government House- Belize House of Culture - My Beautiful Belize Follow us: @MyBeautifulBze on Twitter | MyBeautifulBelize on Facebook

Eight SPHS athletes participate in CODICADER Games
Eight San Pedro High School (SPHS) students left for Guatemala on Monday, September 1st to represent Belize in the 28th Centroamericano de Deportes y Recreacion (CODICADER) Games. The games run from Monday, September 1st to Wednesday, September 10th, and are organized by CODICADER in collaboration with Central American Integration System (SICA) to promote sports amongst youth. Youth athletes from Panama, Honduras, Costa Rica, Nicaragua, Guatemala, El Salvador and Belize are competing in 16 sport disciplines. The SPHS volleyball team comprises of Gabriel Nuñez, Guillermo Nuñez, Afri Black, Shemar Broaster, Francisco Pineda, Jovi Ico and Giomar Marin, and SPHS triathlete Kian Ancona are among Belize’s delegation of 89 athletes participating in the games. Representatives include the champion school teams of the National Secondary Schools Sports Association (NSSSA) in football, volleyball, basketball and softball, as well as individual NSSSA champions in track and field, chess and karate. All participants must be 17 years of age or younger.

September Celebrations Officially Kicks-off
The National Celebrations Commission officially launched the 2014 September Celebrations on Sunday, September 1st at the House of Culture (The Government House) in Belize City. This year’s celebrations are being held under the theme “Industrious Hands, Intelligent Minds, Together for Belize!” The event marks the opening of the celebrations in honor of two significant days in Belizean History, the 216th anniversary of The Battle of St. George’s Caye and the 33rd anniversary of Belize’s Independence. The event is usually held at Saint Georges Caye, but due to inclement weather it was moved to the House of Culture, and saw the attendance of a large crowd of patriotic citizens. Several dignitaries also attended the event, including Governor General His Excellency Sir Colville Young, Acting Mayor of Belize City Alifa Elrington-Hyde, and several ambassadors to Belize.

Ambergris Today

Pic of the Week: Fishing with Jimmy Buffett
This picture is not of Jimmy Buffett fishing in San Pedro, Ambergris Caye, but of him fishing with a Sanpedrano. Pictured here is Mr. Buffett (right) with local Sanpedrano pilot Gerald Leslie off the coast of Nantucket, Massachusets, USA. Gerald Leslie is a private pilot for Mr. Buffett and on one of their days off they went fishing and caught this huge tuna. They wanted to boast their big catch with San Pedro and sent the picture to Ambergris Today.

Another Older Person A Victim of Senseless Crime
The NCA once again requests that greater attention be paid to older persons in their communities because they are more vulnerable than most and not able to defend themselves against attackers. Older persons also need to be more vigilant and make sure they do not walk about on their own at night or let unknown persons into their homes. Also once older persons report incidences to the authorities they need to be taken seriously and attended to.

Misc Belizean Sourcesmzz

Handing Over of Health and Safety Policy Manual
Tourists and local visitors to archaeological sites in Belize will soon benefit from new health and safety policies to be undertaken in Belize in an effort to implement the recently created Health and Safety Standards for archaeological sites. The Health and Safety Standards policy is now mandatory after being signed into law by the Minister of Trade and Industry, Investment and Consumer Protection on May 27, 2014 and gazetted on May 31, 2014. The Health and Safety Policy Manual was officially handed over to the Belize Tourism Board and the National Institute of Culture and History on Tuesday, September 2, 2014 at the Institute of Archaeology’s office in Belmopan. The policy manual was developed as part of the objectives of the Making Tourism Benefit Communities Adjacent to Archaeological Sites (MTBCAAS) project, funded by the European Union and the Government of Belize and implemented by the Belize Tourism Board and the National Institute of Culture and History. The project intends to achieve three main sets of results at archaeological sites:

Chicken Fajitas
Chicken Fajitas are very easy to make. I use the thigh because it has more fat and will give more flavor to the meal. I made the seasonings from scratch to avoid using a mix that has msg. This dish it spicy and very satisfying.

Thirsty Thursday's Grand Opening
Thirsty Thursday had their grand opening on Saturday. They've really done an amazing job on the old Piache spot. Tanya Carter showed up to sing, and Danny Chung got some great pictures. They are open Wednesday through Sunday.

Channel 7

Belize Begins Nation's Cup With A Loss
The Nation's Cup started this afternoon in Washington DC – and the Belize Jaguars took on Honduras in game two, which started an hour ago. The bad news is that team Belize is down two nil – but it's not like the Hondurans were scoring on us: we scored on ourselves – not once, but twice! In the 33rdand 36th minutes. Jerome "Jaro" James scored the first and Elroy Smith scored the second – so at the half, Belize was down two goals to nil. Right now they are in the halftime intermission, so we'll keep you posted on the game as it progresses throughout the news.

GSU Attacks Again!
Last night, we told you about the PUP’s call for the removal of the New Commander of the Gang Suppression Unit, Inspector Mark Flowers. Well the Unit is making headlines again tonight after another allegation of police brutality and excessive use of force has emerged. The story started earlier this morning when the area around George Street saw a new GSU toy on patrol. It’s a bus designed for the unit’s paramilitary style and intelligence based operation. It’s designed with a generator and 2 AC Units on the back, sophisticated camera equipment, and electronics on the inside. It’s a fully-functional and mobile operating base, and today, they decided to test it out in George Street territory. It unfolded into chaos, and 7News was there for the aftermath. Daniel Ortiz reports: When we arrived, Officers of the Gang Suppression Unit were searching a yard on King Street.They were peering impishly over the high zinc fence, monitoring the progress of our cameras. Meanwhile, they already had Kariq Tzul and Bernard Myers detained in the back of their police mobile. Both men appeared angry, and Tzul looked to be in discomfort.The officers combed the rest of the area looking for another man who they had been pursuing, careful to try to avoid us. Tzul was detained by the officers here at the upstairs flat of this house, and as has been alleged before, the officers reportedly stopped the homeowner from monitoring their activities while they interrogated Tzul.

This Is How Badly They Beat Up Kariq
And while our news team couldn’t convince Kariq Tzul, the alleged victim of brutality from the GSU, to speak with us after he had been released, Monica Bodden caught up with him and his family an hour before news time. Asking to appear off camera, he outlined his version of events to us beginning from when the officers entered the King Street House, up until he was released from the hospital. Here’s how he described it:… Kariq Tzul "Miss they just come out there and start beat me. 3 of them just come up by the place, ask me who is up there and tell me get down and start beat me. After a little while, they dragged me to the back and ask me who else in the house, nobody in the house but me. They start talk about breaking my ribs and start hit me in my face over and over and 3 of them just start beat me up until they tired of beating me, after that they bring me out." Monica Bodden "At what point did they mention to you what, or why?" Kariq Tzul "They didn't say nothing, they just ask me who is in there, I told them nobody, nobody and they insist on dragging me to the back and beat me for no reason. They just come up and meeting me texting on my phone."

What GSU Commander Says On Kraal Road
But that’s today’s allegation of GSU excess. What about the ones from last week? As we told you, residents from Kraal Road told 7News last week Thursday that officers from the Unit descended upon them and doled out a heavy dose of beat down. At the time, we were unable to reach the new commander for comment, and we aired our story. Yesterday, we got a chance to speak with him about those allegations coming from Kraal road, and in his response, he accused Channel 7 of airing rumours. It turned into a back and forth about ethics, but here’s his main criticism of our story: Inspector Mark Flowers, Commander - GSU "They were alleging on the news cast that some people were beaten or something to that effect and because they news media was there, you guys were there and they reported on a third party situation. Somebody said that somebody was beaten yet they did not find the need to in the least bit confirm this allegation. It is troubling indeed when they news media will report third hand information without even attempting to verify. And these are the sentiments that are causing problem, not only for the police, but for everybody. If in fact somebody was beaten, why didn't they just interview the person, or try to video the injuries to the person. They claimed that somebody had regurgitated there, they did not show anything to suggest that what they were reporting was even true."

A War Of Words: Police vs. Politicians
And so the GSU is dominating the headlines tonight – but let’s not forget where it all started – on Saturday at the Saint Martin De Porres Field – when former two term Prime Minister Said Musa lashed out at the GSU. Never one to hold back on an easy target, Musa pulled out some of his old social justice rhetoric and condemned the GSU’s tactics. Since then, it’s been a lively back and forth about the unit’s tactics and political gamesmanship. We put a few choice bits together:.. Rt. Hon. Said Musa "I was looking at what the Amandala said in I believe it's an editorial or perhaps it's from the publisher that Belize today to be young and black in Belize City today is to be treated as a criminal or a potential criminal - that is the sad state of affairs that we are in today my friends. When we have these GSU people riding about in pick-up trucks with US flags on them and they go into your home and raid your yard and your home and lock the house and tell even the occupants, even the people who lives in that house you cannot see what we are searching for. They lock out the people and they carry out their search and they beat up people as well. We saw it on television night after night - this is what we are dealing with my friends. We are becoming a police state under Dean Barrow and the UDP. The GSU is out of control and if I have my way, if had anything to do with it, that is one of the first things the PUP will do - out with the GSU - abolish the GSU because that is no way to be treating people."

Coast Guard Charged For Crooked Tree Lagoon Death
You may recall that on January 31st, the Crooked Tree Lagoon saw one of the worst boating accidents in memory. The Lagoon Causeway had been flooded for months, and the Coast Guard had been running a boat back and forth many times a day to get village residents from one side to the other. But on that day in January, one of the coast guard vessels crashed into the other – killing 20 year old Benjamin Gentle and injuring nine other students. Today, over 7 months later, 49 year old Coast Guard Officer Whaine Williams was charged for manslaughter by negligence. Williams was arraigned in Court #1 before Magistrate Herbert Panton where he was unrepresented. It is an indictable offense, so no plea was taken from Williams and the court prosecutor had no objection to bail so Magistrate Panton offered him bail of $2,000 dollars plus one surety of the same amount which he met within 15 minutes of his arraignment. After the charge was read to him, Magistrate Panton said, “I could not help but question why you are before me on this charge.” He commented saying that “Weren’t you in the execution of your duties?” Nevertheless, the charge was read to him and tonight, Williams is home with his family. No other charges were levy against him although eight others were injured in the boat accident.

First Caribbean vs. The Christian Workers Union
Uwahnie Martinez is one of only two Garifuna’s working at the First Caribbean Bank Branch in Dangriga, and she has resigned, alleging discriminatory behavior. That’s what her representative, the Christian Workers Union alleged in a press conference at the Union’s Belize City Office today. Audrey Matura Shepherd told the media that the Bank accepted her resignation, but it does not go into effect until October – since she has to give two months notice. Matura Shepherd says that the Bank has asked to meet with the Union – but that is not acceptable: Audrey Matura Shepherd President – CWU "The bank immediately wrote an email and made several calls to me to ask me to meet with them personally and at the same time wrote a letter asking for a meeting with the employee apart. Our policy is that we never have meeting concerning any employee in their absence especially a matter of this nature and we did not believe in having two separate meetings. So we wrote them back asking for us to have one meeting and to have the employee there and two, to ensure that all the evidence they have tried to use against her or complains she has made against them, that we have all the records straight. Up to today, they have refused to give us that material and as recent as yesterday they sent us an e-mail now saying, they do not believe they need to have a meeting with the union, and the union position is that we disagree. Today I will tell you a bit about what is going on but we are giving them the final opportunity to have a meeting with the union by Friday. We are giving them a deadline by tomorrow, at 1 p.m. Feeling that we will underscore some of the nasty things that have happened and being perpetrated by the bank."

Police Give an Update On "Not In My City" Operation
A month ago, Police from Eastern Division, combining the efforts of all 4 precincts, launched the operation, “Not in My City”. It was the effort to try to curb the recent spike in violence in the City. Since then, the officers have been diligently on the streets keeping up with the enforcement, and today, the Deputy OCED, Sr. Superintendent Edward Broaster, gave us an update. He gave us the metrics of how many successful arrests and seizures were made. Here’s what he told us: Sr. Supt. Edward Broaster, Deputy Commander - Eastern Division "The operation Not In My City has been very successful. We've made quite significant number of arrests as it pertains to quality of life crimes. We've made over 800 arrests pertaining to bicycle offences, we've made 200 drug arrests. We've had the seizure of found drugs, 40 to be exact. We've had quite a number of loitering arrest. We've seized 20 firearms, 7 for which we've made arrest. As well we've had a number of traffic offences that we have dealt with and public drinking. We will continue to press on this Not In My City operation for an indefinite period."

PUP National Campaign Manager Rejects Saldivar Camp's Characterization
The Chairman of the PUP continues leading the investigation into the conduct of the party’s Belize Rural North Standard Bearer Arthur Saldivar. But, Saldivar’s camp says it’s a plot targeting their candidate, simply because he is not liked by certain PUP lawyers. They’re talking about Eamon Courtneay who is pursuing Saldivar on behalf of Melonie Coye, and Godfrey Smith, the PUP’s National Campaign Manager. The names they posted on facebook as being behind this plot include Dr. Francis Smith, Godfrey’s brother and the PUP’s Chairman of the Eastern Caucus. Yesterday, we had an opportunity to ask Smith about it:… Courtney Weatherburne "Saldivar's camp alleges that you as well as Eamon Courtenay and Francis Smith, your brother have some how concocting this plot, what do you have to say about that?" Godrey Smith "Concocting of a plot, no. The issue that faces Mr. Saldivar is one that naturally found itself on the political table of the People's United Party and a position was taken on that. Perhaps after everything had reached it conclusion, what ever that conclusion may be, I will be happy to share what my views were at the time. But again, I don't want to prejudice or influence the process and the position that the leader of the party has taken."

Bees Swarm To Seven News
First snakes, now bees? That’s what you’ll probably be saying after our next story – which is about a large beehive that recently nested itself unto the eastern corner of our Channel 7 studio. We didn’t see it until yesterday, but we don’t know how we missed the huge and active hive! So this morning we called the Agriculture Department who came over to destroy the hive – Monica Bodden spoke to them:.. The bee experts say that the hive was formed because mangrove is flowering in the coastal area right now – and all that sweet honey we tasted was the product of mangrove flowers. They say that bee populations in Belize have been in decline this year due to drought conditions. Without rain, there aren’t enough flowers, and no flowers no pollen for the bees.

After Lecture, Students Big Up The Battle
Did the battle of St. George's Caye really happen? Many Belizeans are skeptical about the historical veracity of the event but today the history lecture at the Bliss Center entitled "St. George's Caye, the truth revealed; exploring the facts and implications" sought to eliminate that doubt and seemingly, it was a success because the students were convinced. On leaving the lecture, they told us more about what they learned today. Mai Wer, Belize High School "Before this lecture I believed that it did actually happen because the facts I did learn in school sounded really realistic to me and this lecture also let me believe even more really." Destiny Gaynair, Belize High School "Now I know more in detail. It didn't actually take just that day to have the battle, it was actually a really long period of time, so that was something that I learned, it was really longer than what we were thought in school."

Mas Camp Madness, Night One
The Carnival Road March is just ten days away and the hyped-up leadup to the big event started last night with the media rounds at the mas camps. Monica Bodden made it to three of them and she has this report:… It is contagious and spreading rapidly - and so far it seems like there isn't a cure for the Carnival Fever. The first night of the annual carnival mas camps started off with 5 junior bands – From what we could see, things were intense as the revelers- all pumped up with energy -demonstrated some of their latest carnival moves in front of our camera. Patricia Flowers– Trench Town Masqueraders "This year Trench Town Masqueraders are portraying looking in the sky. When you look in the sky it is about our universe, the sun the stars the rain, the rainbow. And we also portray them as day and night."

Boxing In Orange Walk Was No Walkover For Local Fighters
On Saturday night, Belizean boxers had the opportunity to showcase their skills and agility at the Orange Walk sporting complex. It was an international ticket, as Belizean boxers took on challengers from Mexico. So how did they do on their home grounds against the northern neighbors? Courtney Weatherburne has the story:… Under the glaring lights of the Orange Walk Sporting Complex, the scrutiny of judges and the weighty expectations of fans, boxers fought ferociously to win the title, the respect of competitors and the adulation of boxing enthusiasts. The night began with the junior boxers. One of the most exciting matches was between 8 year old Victor Sanchez and 10 year old Mervin Choto. Choto dominated much of the first round with his heavy blows to Sanchez’s head.But Sanchez made a major comeback in the last seconds of the first round, with four power bunches that sent Choto tumbling to the ropes.In the second round, both exchanged furious blows but Sanchez landed some powerful body and head jabs.

One More Bottle Of Rum On The Wall At Traveller's
Travelers produces 29 alcoholic beverages – and at least 8 kinds of rum, and about 15 rum products. But, they are adding one more rum, which is simply called “Belizean Rum.” It may sound simple, but it’s meant to capitalize on the Belize brand and attract tourist, while coming in at a price point which will make it an everyman’s rum. Manager, Magali Gabb told us about the process behind producing their Belizean Rum. Traveler's Belizean Rum is currently available in stores in Belize City. They are planning to take it to other districts soon.

GSU Gets Weed In Mahogany Heights
At the tope of the news, you heard all about the Gang Supression Unit and the controversies that it’s at the center of – but the Unit continues to do its work of seizures and interdictions. Yesterday the unit conducted another operation in Mahogany Heights Village at the residence of persons they say are well known George Street Gang affiliates but nothing incriminating was found. However, GSU did find a Brown female sling bag containing 3.5 pounds of weed in an abandoned lot in the immediate area. No one was around at the time and the drugs were labeled as Found Property. The GSU says the drugs are believed to be the property of George Street Gang affiliates who peddle drugs in that community.

Arab Spokesman Defends His Ethnicity
Last night you saw our interview with Amir Zriba – an ad hoc spokesperson for the Arab Community in Belize. He decided to speak out because some of his fellow Arabs are being randomly labeled as Hezbollah in Belize. He says it’s unfair and untrue, and has caused them to face visa cancellations and police harassment. But, while the broad brush labeling may be unfair, there is definitely something up with members of the Lebanese community. We asked him about it: Jules Vazques "From 2012, you had 3 Lebanese murdered in Belize. Extremely famous murders are executions in broad daylight. Obviously 3 out of a community of maybe a few hundred is a big percentage. So something is happening in this Lebanese family, in this Lebanese community in Belize." Amir Zriba "Okay Jules, I'm going to be honest with you. What happened, has nothing to do with Hezbollah, we have been accused of being with Hezbollah for 2, 3 years. Yes they might be some of us who do bad business or bad relation or maybe infamous with other things, but nothing to do with Hezbollah. What ever happened at that time, there is involvement only Belize knows exactly what happened and I tell you Jules, it is something very sad for the community, it was 3 at one time. One happen, then I look at Schackron, but some people saying different story, even Belize doesn't know the truth."

PM's Wife Visits Blue Hole
Every year, approximately ten thousand tourists visit the Blue Hole and Half Moon Caye Natural Monuments. Unfortunately, of that number, very few are Belizeans. As part of ongoing efforts to have Belizeans enjoy Belizean resources, this weekend, Oceana, in collaboration with the Belize Audubon Society, organized a visit to the these World Heritage Sites for two Belizeans who had never been to the Lighthouse Reef Atoll: wife of the Prime Minister Kim Simplis Barrow and their daughter, Salima. And while it may have been their first visit, as the following video highlights, it definitely won’t be their last. The Half Moon Caye and Blue Hole Natural Monuments are among the oldest protected sites in Belize. There are no entrance fees for visits to the Great Blue Hole for Belizeans while the entrance fee for Belizeans to Half Moon Caye is two dollars and fifty cents.

Final Football Score
Belize’s first game in the 2014 UNCAF Nation’s Cup against Honduras has ended in a 2 to 0 loss for the Jaguars. The Jaguars battled hard to try to win back those goals, which the team scored on themselves, but at the end of 90 minutes plus 2 minutes and 43 seconds of stoppage time, the score remained. So, that’s where it’s at tonight, Honduras has won the game, but it’s because of those two own goals, scored in 33rd minute and 36th minute, scored by Jerome Jarro James and Elroy Smith respectively. If you would like the see the full game and how the Jaguars looked, it will be aired on Channel 7 at 9:30 tonight.

Channel 5

Tate & Lyle Agrees to Purchase Initial Tonnage from 2014-2015 Sugar Crop
Last week, Tate and Lyle dropped a bombshell on cane farmers when it wrote to say that it will be buying a minimum of ten thousand tons of fair-trade sugar [...]

Suspect in Brutal Murder of Agripina Coc Still on the Lam
Tonight, police say that the suspect in the brutal murder of San Pedro, Columbia elder Agripina Coc, is still at large. The manhunt for the suspected killer continues, with villagers [...]

Police Say Citizen Arrest in San Pedro, Columbia Is Unauthorized
The plan was reportedly to lock up the family members in the village while village leaders questioned them. But for their own safety, Punta Gorda Police decided to transport them [...]

FCIB Accepts Uwahnie Martinez’s Resignation, Still No Meeting With CWU
Last Tuesday, the plight of Uwahnie Martinez, an employee of CIBC FirstCaribbean Bank, made headlines when she was reportedly informed by her superiors at the institution that she wasn’t allowed [...]

Oil Spill Near Hondo Stream is in Veracruz, Mexico not in Belize
There is a report that is tonight causing alarm locally. It speaks of a spill in the Rio Hondo that spans Belize and Mexico, but we can confirm that the [...]

Drug Use Up Among Belize City High School Students
A recent survey involving a sample of four hundred and fifty high school students is showing an alarming use of drugs. The survey was carried out by the National Drug [...]

Broaster Skirts Around GSU/PUP Tiff
The very public war of words between former Prime Minister Said Musa and GSU Commander Mark Flowers has gone viral. It’s the big thing on the airwaves, morning shows and [...]

Police Say Citywide Crackdown on Crime a Resounding Success
While the insults thrown between Flowers and Musa make for sensational news and politically stimulating drama, there’re actually bigger things happening in the city. For example, there’s an ongoing operation [...]

BML Debt Still Outstanding, Is Mayor Bradley’s Promise Broken?
Mayor of Belize City Darrell Bradley has reneged on his very first commitment to Belize Maintenance Limited. The Council is in arrears twenty-one weeks, and he made a firm promise [...]

Seven Months Later, Coastguard Officer Charged for Manslaughter By Negligence
In the early hours of the morning of January thirty-first, a collision between two boats ended the life of twenty-year old Benjamin Jerome Gentle Junior, a former Gwen Liz student. [...]

Deshawn Craig Charged for Kept Firearm and Ammunition
There was an attempted robbery on Monday morning at the Port of Belize. Police say two men tried to rob the establishment and that their investigations later led them to two suspects [...]

Broaster on Quality of Life Cleanup
As you heard earlier in the newscast, a major component of the operation known as Not In My City has been a crackdown on what is known as quality of [...]

The Rationale Behind Police Department’s Media Blackout
Today, News Five was allowed unrestricted access to Deputy Commander of the Eastern Division, Senior Superintendent Edward Broaster. Our request for an interview was handled quickly and efficiently by the [...]

Rotaract Donates Stationeries to Needy Primary School Children
Primary school students are back in school for the start of the new academic year. We caught up with a group of them who had every reason to be smiling [...]

Mas Camps In Full Swing for Carnival 2014
The spectacular carnival road march is set for September thirteenth and from a look at the mas camps at this early stage, the event promises to exceed expectations. First, there [...]

Travelers Liquors Unveils New Belizean Rum
Travellers Liquors Limited is among the producers of Belize’s finest rums. From vintage liquors to aged dark rums, from gold to white and flavored rums and in between, there are [...]

Belize Versus Honduras, International Football Match!!
At nine o’clock tonight, we’ll be carrying the game between Belize jaguars and Honduras that took place at the RFK Stadium in Washington, D.C. where Belize is attempting to qualify [...]


Health And Safety Issued For Public Archaeological Sites In Belize
Over the past years tourist arrivals in Belize has seen an increase and all indications are that the trend will continue this year as tourists and local visitors to archaeological sites in Belize will soon benefit from new health and safety policies to be undertaken in Belize in an effort to implement the recently created Health and Safety Standards for archaeological sites. The Health and Safety Policy Manual was officially handed over to the Belize Tourism Board and the National Institute of Culture and History yesterday at the Institute of Archaeology’s office in Belmopan. The policy is now mandatory after being signed into law by the Minister of Trade and Industry, investment and Consumer Protection on May 27, 2014 and gazetted on May 31, 2014.

Men Accused Of Robbing Tan's Game Room Unable To Meet Bail
Twenty one year old Jahir Armando Garcia and 24 year old Charles Gabriel Sho, accused of robbing Tans Game Room in Corozal Town on Sunday night, were arraigned at the Corozal Magistrates court this afternoon where they were jointly charged for robbery. Both men were offered bail of $1000.00 each plus a surety of the same amount. They were unable to meet bail and up to news time they were still under police custody. The men are accused of making good their escape with more than $1,000 in cash from Tans Game Room.

Obesity A Severe Public Health Crisis
One of the biggest health stories of the year has been the rise in obesity among both adults and children in the world and in Belize it is no different. We've all heard so much about the "obesity epidemic" that it is easy to think the story is being blown out of proportion. After all, people putting on a few pounds may not seem to warrant the proclamation of a national emergency. But while obesity may not be the Black Death, it is a severe public health crisis. Experts agree that as more and more obese children become obese adults, the diseases associated with obesity, such as heart disease, cancer, and especially diabetes will surge. That will mean a lot of sick people. Today when we sat down with Medical Officer at the Northern Regional Hospital, Dr Manuel Estrada, we were informed that 60 percent of the Belizean population suffer from overweight issues and obesity. So, one has to wonder, how obesity got so out of control that we reached this crisis. And more importantly, how do we stop it?

Parts Of The Rio Hondo River Turns Blood Red
The international press reports that nearly a mile of the Hondo River has turned blood red following the oil spill on August 27th in the northern state of Nuevo Leon in Mexico. The Hondo River lines the border between Belize and Mexico and several crews have been working to clean four thousand gallons of the crude oil out of the river before it reaches a nearby lake known as the Laguna Maria Lizamaba on the Mexican side. The sill was the provoked by thieves according to reports. The 24 inch pipeline, owned by Pemex, was raptured when thieves attempted to tap into it. When the leak was found, workers initially contained the deadly mess, but heavy rains caused containment ponds to overflow and spread the oil again. According to the international reports, the Veracruz state environmental prosecutor Dalos Rodriguez Vargas said that dozens of “reptiles, birds and fish” had been killed, as well as vegetation on the river banks, which will have to be replaced. According to reports, thousands of illegal pipeline taps have become an increasing environmental and safety problem in Mexico as they trigger spills or explosions deadly to animals and human alike. Authorities say it will take months to clean up the mess.

BSCFA Addresses Non-Complainces By FLOCERT
And while the BSCFA wants the issue on the revenue sharing of bagasse, they are also tackling other issues simultaneously. One such matter is on the efforts being made to improve in the areas that the Association has fallen short after the FLOCERT audit. Alfredo Ortega - Vice Chairman BSCFA, COM “Ya les hemos enviado a ellos las medidas correctivas, propuestas y las han aceptado y ahora nos queda la implementación de ello en la cual ya estamos a punto de iniciar para implementación de las medidas correctivas. Esperamos la cooperación de todos los caneros para que así podamos salir victoriosos y podamos triunfar en esta situación que hoy que nos esta lastimando, porque vemos que nos esta cayendo como huracán todos los problemas pero creo que todo tiene solución siempre y cuando tenemos el deseo de avanzar y hacer las cosas como debemos de hacerlo.” Another matter of much importance to the association is the situation surrounding the latest cut in sales to Tate and Lyle. Ortega says that they have sent a letter to the company and have received a response.

38 Year Old Found Dead Inside His Bedroom
Corozal Police are tonight waiting for the results of a post mortem examination to determine what exactly caused the death of a 38 year old man who was found dead this morning by his brother. It was little after three this morning when Benito Puerto, a construction worker of Santa Rita Heights in Corozal Town was found dead inside his bedroom. According to brother of the deceased, he discovered Benito dead when he went to check-up on him after he arrived home intoxicated a few hours earlier. Corozal Police was called to the area and Benito was immediately transported to the Corozal Community Hospital where he was pronounced dead on arrival. Benito’s family admits that he had a drinking problem. In fact, they told us that he had been consuming alcohol for the past two days and that could have possibly caused his death.

Alcoholism, A Serious Problem In Belize
At the top of the newscast we told you about the death of a male person from Santa Rita Heights, his family indicated that he may have died as a result of consuming high volumes of alcohol. But if our records prove accurate, in a span of one month, 3 persons have lost their lives due to severe alcoholism due to multiple complications. And although drinking alcohol is a part of the culture in many societies and many people use it sensibly, its misuse has become a serious and worsening public health problem. Today we sat down with Medical Officer, Dr. Manuel Estrada, who says that most patients seeking help at the hospital are in denial of their drinking habits. Dr. Manuel Estrada – Medical Officer, NRH “I don’t know if it is the culture that we have in Belize but alcohol is a serious problem not only here on Orange Walk but country wide, alcohol have been related to several diseases for example liver failure, we have had chronic phsyrosis and as a result we have a lot of deaths due to alcohol abuse, alcohol is drug which is legal but it has social issues and it can also have health wise issues.”

Orange Walk Resident Detained For Drug Trafficking
Tonight a resident from Orange Walk is spending his first night at the Kolbe Correctional Facility after he was arrested and charged for drug trafficking and was unable to meet bail. On Tuesday 2nd September 2014 at about 11:20p.m, Orange Walk police conducted a search at the residence of Alex Tobar, 18 year old Belizean Construction Worker of corner San Antonio Road and Staines Alley, Orange Walk Town. Upon Police entering Tobar’s property, he attempted to escape but was quickly captured by authorities and escorted to his residence where the search began. On the septic tank located in the rear of the property police retrieved vegetable substance consistent to that of cannabis which weighed 2.4 grams. Further search in the immediate are led cops to the discovery of a black plastic bag that contained vegetable substance suspected to be cannabis weighing 246.9 grams.

SIMIS Introduced Into The Sugar Industry
For the rest of the week the Sugar Industry Research and Development Institute, SIRDI will be carrying out an awareness campaign throughout the northern part of the country with the objective of sensitizing cane farmers about the benefits of the Sugar Industry Management Information System. SIMIS is a system that will be implemented to collect information continuously for the Sugar Industry in three levels: The general Information of the farmer, Information of the cane fields and finally information generated by the mill during the crop season. Jessamyn Ramos, SIRDI’s Information Officer, says SIMIS is not only a plus for the Sugar Industry; it will also benefit those that produce and harvest the cane.

How Can Children Readjust To School Schedule After Holidays
Getting kids to stick to a bedtime routine can be an uphill battle that's bound to make even the most patient parent want to hide under the covers. With the summer break over and the school year kicking into high gear, moms and dads all over the country are dreading the words: "But I don't want to go to sleep!" Today when we spoke to District Education Officer for Orange Walk Town, Carla Alvarez, we found out that the process of readjusting to a school-day schedule may be challenging, but it must be done. Carla Alvarez – District Education Officer, OW “During the summer we allow children to stay later and then they get up later in the morning and so they get into that pattern as you mentioned and so I think one of the important things we need to do is maybe a couple of weeks before classes actually start we need to try to little by little put them back into that mode of going to sleep a little bit earlier every night and then getting up a little bit earlier every morning because yes it does take some adjustments, I am experiencing with my own child, but I think if we consistently do that at least may a week before classes start if we can try to send our children to bed a little bit earlier then they start to get up a little bit earlier and then it is not so challenging on the first day of classes.”

The Trick To Separation Anxiety
And while some children need time to readjust to their sleeping schedules, another hurdle first time student’s face is separation anxiety from their parents. In early childhood, crying, tantrums, or clinginess are healthy reactions to separation. Separation anxiety can begin before a child’s first birthday, and may pop up again or last until a child is four years old, but both the intensity level and timing of separation anxiety vary tremendously from child to child. A little worry over leaving mom or dad is normal, even when your child is older. But you can ease your child’s separation anxiety by staying patient and consistent, and by gently but firmly setting limits.

Discussions Underway Between Belize and Mexico On Transport Issues
In last night’s newscast, we told you about the Road Safety project that was rolled out last year and revisited this month. That project aims at curbing the high incidence of drunk driving in Belize, education on traffic legislation and safety, road infrastructure improvements, equipment and training among other things. This is not the only work being done in the department according to Chief Transport Officer Crispin Jeffries. He says that the transport department of Belize is currently engaged in discussions with Mexican counterparts on how to improve road border transportation between both countries.

Torch Run Runners Needed
Plans are underway for the September Celebrations countrywide. And as is tradition, a torch run is held on the 20th night to welcome the 21st of September. The torch run moves out of Belize City at about 5:00pm and is scheduled to arrive in Orange Walk minutes before midnight. In charge of this year’s 3rd annual torch run is Orange Walk Town Councillor for Youth and Sports, Ladrick Sheppard who is looking for young male and female athletes willing to participate in the run. Laddrick Sheppard – Councillor for Youth and Sports “Tomorrow we’ll be having a meeting with those runners, we are asking those runners that were running the year before to please show up at 7:30 and also we are encouraging some of the females to join in and be a part of the torch run and this year we have spoken to the police officers to give us and assistance we know that that was a very important factor that played a very important role that when it comes to that night time and it gets a little dark that is when the police would give us a big assistance in helping us with one of their transportations also this has been a great, great honour to work along with some of these young people when it comes to the torch run and I hope it continues and it becomes more and more and the further it goes it is better for Belize and we are doing it for the virtue of Belize and it is something great.”

Decline In Student Enrollment Due To Too Many Fees
Today when we sat down with Education Officer Carla Alvarez, she noted a sharp decline in enrollment figures for the past few years in schools in the north. Alvarez says part of the problem stems from parent’s complaints of schools asking and requesting way too much from the students. Examples would include frequent rag days, asking for supplies and additional money throughout the week and months of school and it seems to have taken a toll on cash strapped families. Alvarez says the Ministry is strongly discouraging the sale of raffles and other forms of fundraising, since it poses predatory risks on our children.

Vehicle Batteries Stolen In Corozal
While police in Corozal Town are currently cracking the case of the latest robbery in that municipality, they are also seeking the assistance of the public to recover four stolen vehicle batteries. 34 year old Eric Milian, Belizean businessman of Ranchito Village in the Corozal District, reported to police that sometime between 7:00pm on August 30th and 6:00am August 31st, four LTH vehicle batteries were stolen from his blue freight liner tow head truck that was parked in front of his house. The batteries have a total cost of $1,000.00.

Belizean Women Exploited In Cancun Mexico
Belizean women, along with Guatemalan female immigrants are exploited in Cancun, according to the Mexican press. In a report published today, it states that the Institute of Tourism Investigations at the La Salle University in Cancun, 46.8 percent of undocumented migrants work as housekeepers and hotel maids in Benito Juarez, Solidaridad and Tulum. The investigation is titled “Migrant women in Quintana Roo, Profile and conditions of stay”. The report states that employers are continuously promoting the illegal residence of immigrants especially domestic workers of which 23.4 percent are hired per day for domestic work. Many of these women come from Guatemala and Belize, the report adds, and they arrive by air, sea or land to obtain employment despite the risk of facing violence at the work place or psychological abuse.

Date Set For The Election Of New Lands Committee In San Jose Nuevo Palmar
We have been following the story of the descendants of San Jose Nuevo Palmar as they work towards the reelection of a lands committee they find efficient in administering their land entrusted to them by their ancestors and a committee they can trust. The situation grew out of hand earlier this year when disgruntled villagers moved to remove the existing lands committee primarily on the grounds of land and financial mismanagement. Since then the government, which is the trustee, intervened and commenced the process of resolving the matter by first ensuring that due process is followed in reelecting a new lands committee. It proved a rather lengthy process which almost ended in villagers conducting the reelection without the trustee’s participation. Today however, further conflict was avoided as government finally met with the villagers to set that date. Dalila Ical has more on the story. Dalila Ical – Reporting After the group comprised of elders, villagers and the Village Council developed a voters list, the Lands Department and Solicitor General have sanctioned that list. Lands Commissioner Wilbert Vallejos says they also set a date for reelecting a new lands committee in a short meeting with the villagers this morning.

Two Men Charged For Sunday Nights Robbery Of Chinese Businessman In Corozal
Tonight two men are behind bars as they have been charged for Sunday night's robbery of Tans Game Room in Corozal Town. They are 21 year old Jahir Armando Garcia and 24 year old Charles Gabriel Sho both of Corozal Town. This afternoon both men were charged for robbery and are expected to appear at the Corozal Magistrates Court tomorrow. We also understand that Corozal Police has recuperated some of the stolen items. As reported last night 48 year old Tan Guo Zhang, was inside Tans Game Room when sometime between 9:15pm and 9:30pm, a man of Hispanic decent entered the business.

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Attorney Says She Is Awaiting Meeting With First Caribbean Bank
CIBC First Caribbean Bank has recently come under fire after allegations of discrimination surfaced last week. As we reported, allegations are that the management of the Dangriga Branch of First Caribbean Bank instructed its employees to not speak the Garifuna Language. That did not sit well with the Garifuna community and the controversy sparked a demonstration last week. The bank has issued a statement denying the allegations. However, to the President of Christian Workers Union Audrey Matura-Shepherd, bank officials are refusing to meet with her and the employee at the same time. Matura -Shepherd gave the bank officials a deadline of tomorrow afternoon to reply to her request for a joint meeting. AUDREY MATURA-SHEPHERD audrey matura“The bank immediately brought an email and made several calls to me asking to meet with them personally and at the same time wrote a letter asking for a meeting with the employee apart. Our policy at the union is that we never have meeting concerning any employees especially in their absence especially a matter of this nature and we did not believe in having two separate meetings. So we wrote them back and asked them for a meeting for us to have one and two to ensure that all the evidence that they have try to use against her or whatever complaints she has made against them that we have all the records straight. Up to today they have refused to give us that material and as recent as yesterday they sent us an email saying now that they do not believe that they need to have a meeting with the union and the unions position is that we disagree.

Bagasse Negotiations To Resume
In other news from the sugar industry, LOVE NEWS understands that BSI and cane farmers are to meet once more on Monday September 8 to continue negotiations for a quantum to be paid for bagasse. The meeting to be held in Orange Walk Town follows a letter sent by BSCFA to the Sugar Industry Control Board requesting intervention in the matter. Fred Ortega of the BSCFA told us more. ALFREDO ORTEGA “ As you know we had our general meeting on the 20th of July where the farmers passed a motion that we ask for the intervention from an independent expert to look forward into both ____ and to come out with a clear analysis and indication on how some things can work out but the letter was sent to the SICB and we called board meeting on which they came out with a proposal that the association and BSI meet once more to see if we can come out with a good understanding on this meeting and if it is not then we will go back to SICB in regards to getting that independent expert to look forward into both proposals.

Tate And Lyle Clarifies Letter To Cane Farmers On Sugar Quota
The Belize Sugar Cane Farmers’ Association, BSCFA, has received a reply from Tate & Lyle Sugar regarding the sugar quota cut announced last week Tuesday Arturo Cantun reporting … ARTURO CANTUN “Last week Tuesday August 26 mega sugar cooperation Tate and Lisle announced to sugar cane farmers in Belize that there is a high possibility that the sugar quote sold under the Fairtrade logo will be cut as much as 85%. The news sent shockwaves within the sugar industry and main industry stakeholders but today another letter was received from London and Tate and Lisle clarifies the letter. The letter received this afternoon informs Belize Sugar Cane Farmers Association that payment for sugar from the 2013-2014 crop season will be paid immediately. Alfredo Ortega is BSCFA spokesperson.” ALFREDO ORTEGA “But what was not so clear was the payment and we taught that the payment for this crop that had just passed and the deliveries under the trade umbrella would have been cut but that is what they have sent clarification now that they will be paying the premium for the 65,000 that they will receive this year and they will be paying it in due course based on the arrangement that is there and on the date it should be paid. We will be receiving funds for the 65,000 tons under the Fairtrade umbrella of this crop that has passed.”

Rotaract Donates to Central Assembly
The Rotaract Club of Belize made a donation to students of Central Assembly of God Primary School. The project has been in place for four years and each year donations are given out to different Schools within Belize City. Community Director for the Rotaract Club of Belize, Tania Thompson, elaborated more about the donations. Tania Thompson – Community Director, Rotaract Club TANIA THOMSPON “The project has been something that we have been doing for the past four years and we try to keep it consecutive. Each year we try to up the project by giving more bags, more supplies and stuff like that. Last year we did 50 supply packages but it was just packages we didn’t give the actual school bags so this year that was our improvement. We went out and we sought different schoolbags that we had the 50 schoolbags to put the supplies in. Every year we try to select a different school, the reason for that is we try to reach out to the larger community. We try not to stick to one school so we try to look for different school every year to work with. So when we choose a school every project we do throughout the year would be with that specific school for the year.”

BML Workers Say They Are Banking On Prime Minister Keeping His Promise
Attorney Audrey Matura Shepherd also gave an up-date with the situation of the employees of Belize Maintenance Limited. As we reported, back in August, more than a hundred sanitation workers protested by dumping garbage in front of City Hall after BML was not getting paid by the City Council. The workers got angrier after they were told that they would be out of job by January because Mayor Darrell will not renew BML’s contract. After the rage of the workers was televised, Prime Minister Dean Barrow intervened and pledged to pay the salaries of all sanitation workers until the contract expires and thereafter, they would transition to the City Council. Their attorney, Audrey Matura Shepherd, is holding the Prime Minister to his word. Audrey Matura Shepherd – Attorney AUDREY MATURA- SHEPHERD “We have not gotten any commitment in writing. However as I previously said the Prime Minister intervene has publicly said what it will be that is what appeased the employees. We will act on that good faith until otherwise is sure. I know for sure that when the employees were planning to have two days of protest in the city and the reason they held back that protest was because they were told that their job was secure come 2015 because the city council will absorb you.

Lecture Focuses On Battle of St. George’s Caye
Today, the Belize History Association in collaboration with the National Celebrations Commission presented the National Lecture: “St. George’s Caye, the truth revealed: Exploring the Facts and Implications”. The presenters were Francis Humphreys and Fred Hunter Senior. According to the Vice Chair of the Belize History Association, Gian Vasquez, the lecture was a success. Gian Vasquez – Vice Chair, Belize History Association GIAN VASQUEZ “In terms of the success I think it was highly successful we brought a lot of the high-schoolers. Our target was the highschoolers and the audience at home. We wanted to educate and at least begin the discussion about the history of Belize. We find that a lot of our people don’t know the real history of our country and so this was our first step at trying to get that information out. Having it broadcasted live on national tv stations I think was that additional boost to reach a lot more people and I think we did that today by having this lecture. I think the interaction was very good. We had many questions that showed that people were listening and thinking about the information being given. Being our first lecture I think we did really well in drawing out our public and having them give us that feedback. We got feedback from Facebook and other mediums to give questions to these presenters. “

New Data Base System On Sugar Being Developed
The Sugar Industry Research & Development Institute, SIRDI, is developing a data base system that will hold vital information about cane fields in northern Belize. Arturo Cantun reporting… ARTURO CANTUN “SIMINS is the name of the database system being developed by SIRDI with funding from the European Union. The principal objective is to provide vital information to stakeholders in the sugar industry. Information officer at SIRDI Jessamine Ramos explains.” JESSANIBE RAMOS “What SIMINS is all about is a centralized database system that we the sugar industry stakeholders are developing for storing information about cane farmers and about cane parcels under production. “ ARTURO CANTUN “Why is this important for the industry?” JESSAMINE RAMOS “This is important for the industry because at the moment we are yet to know how much acres we have under production so what we are doing is trying to gather as much information from all stake holders and that includes the sugar cane farmers so that we could have a total acreage under production. Our varietal status and in that way all sugar industry stakeholders could use this information to make better decisions.”

Orange Walk Town Council Donates To Primary Schools
The Orange Walk Town council today donated books to two town schools. The books are both old and new and are to benefit children from the pre-school and infant division. Mayor Kevin Bernard and his deputy Ian Cal made the delivery of the books this morning. Mayor Kevin Bernard KEVIN BERNARD “We were able to secure some books. A good gentleman from the states had contacted me and had said that he had some reading books that should be useful to our schools. As you know reading is essential and we want to ensure that our young minds are catered to good learning and the books that we were given will be an addition to their libraries. It will help the younger kids that are growing up so that they could learn to read more and accept the fact that reading is what makes us better, it gives us more knowledge, it allows us to be able to think well, it allows us to be able to defend ourselves. So that is the reason why we decided to take this initiative.”

University Of Belize To Get Nuclear Lab
The International Atomic Energy Agency, the world’s center of cooperation in the nuclear field is proposing to establish a Nuclear Lab at the University of Belize in Belmopan. The idea of the lab is to promote safe, secure and peaceful nuclear technologies. University of the West Indies Professor of Applied Nuclear Physics Dr. Mitko Voutchkov explained the mechanism of the project. Dr. Mitko Voutchkov – UWI Professor of Applied Nuclear Physics MITKO VOUTCHKOV “The purpose of my visit is to visit the University of Belize on behalf of the International Atomic Energy Agency to advise on some application of nuclear science. During this project Dr. Luis and other staff members will be trained on radiation safety, they will get that exam and license and after that they will have to implement for the new staff members, they will be responsible for that. The purpose of the lab will accommodate a few pieces of equipment, x-ray machines, gamma ray machines and the equipment that can measure radioactivity in the water. So with these three equipment they will be able to develop applications in several areas in terms of monitoring contamination in the environment, food safety and security, health. In medicine for example if you go have a diagnostics x rays etc. so the lab it will oversee all these safe application but in the meantime it will be used for teaching purposes to set up a new program.”

PUP Says Gang Supression Unit Must Go
Yesterday the People’s United Party responded to comments made by the Head of the Gang Suppression Unit Inspector Mark Flowers. Former Prime Minister of Belize, Said Musa at the endorsement convention of Cordel Hyde last Saturday stated that the GSU has to be disbanded. Flowers responded by saying that the former Prime Minister’s comments were irresponsible. Attorney Lisa Shoman, weighed in on the issue by saying that the PUP has had concerns about the GSU for some years. Attorney Lisa Shoman LISA SHOMAN “In 2009 I had to opportunity to sit for two years on the crimes control commission. Not only did the PUP participate in that we also made concrete written representations to the UDP administration suggesting how work could be done, what things could be done, how we should function, those were all ignored and what has happened is an increased criminalization of the citizen population not only by the GSU but by laws like the firearms control act, which has meant that therefore the criminalization of the population is the primary purpose that the government is using to try to control crimes. If you treat everybody like a criminal that does not bode well for cutting down the crimes in this country. Therefore the party has been for a long time saying to the government we want to work with you, let us work with you. We asked for amendments to the firearms act supposedly they are coming on Friday. We have not seen them nor have we been consulted. We’ve not even been provided with a copy of the coming bill. On the other hand we have provided them with our amendments. So to put this on the PUP as though all of a sudden we are acting in some unconscionable manner I think is unfortunate but what is even more unfortunate is the extended rant which was made by Inspector Flowers. It’s wrong and unprofessional.”

Mayor Complains About Progress Of Street Works
A number of infrastructural works are currently underway throughout the country and others are set to begin very soon. In Orange Walk the second phase of the project includes the refurbishment of the Orange Walk Central Park. The commencement of the project was set for the beginning of September but three days into the month there is no sign that any work is likely to start in the next few days. According to Mayor, Kevin Bernard, this is of concern to all town residents. Mayor Kevin Bernard “Well I am waiting to see what update we will be getting by Friday. I have been in communication with the project manager Mr. Raymond and we keep hearing the same issue that they are waiting on the world bank in fact at a meeting last night my council mentioned that we should probably go further than that and start to question the bank whether or not the bank indeed has these delays because that is the information that we keep getting. I know previously we were told that if we were to change the banner on the billboard we had in the park that would speed up the process. As you know the billboard in the park did not had the government of Belize there before, we decided to change it to show cooperation that we appreciative of the fact that yes this loan from the world bank was gotten through the government of Belize but the Orange Walk town council has also invested money in terms of its 3% contribution but we need to see work and we have been waiting too long. I know evaluation and bids have already been done I was part of that evaluation committee we all know that that was already sent to the world bank, what is the delay we don’t know but we really want to see this new park. Work should already have begun because they said the month of September would have seen work commencing in the park up to now no contractor has been identified.”

Spokesperson For Arab Muslim Community Denies Mexican Newspaper Report
On Monday we reported on a group of persons that were reportedly stopped at a check point in Merida because it was alleged they were linked with the Hezbollah terrorist group. The report came via the Mexican Newspaper, “Por Esto”, which reported that, a man by the name, Hacsam Elsayet, was driving a grey Mercedes Benz with Belizean license plates. The newspaper states that authorities over that side of the border had gotten information of the travelling group and as a result a check point was place. According to the spokesperson for the Arab/Muslin Community in Belize, Amir Zriba, the report is completely false and is an attempt to destroy the reputation of the Muslim community in Belize. Zriba spoke to Love News. Amir Zriba – Spokesperson, Arab/Muslin Community in Belize AMIR ZRIBA “Firstly today we had a meeting between the Arab community and the Muslim community in Belize, they are tired of are recusing Hezbollah and everybody was frustrated and the last thing is we have right now is the little story is Al Said story in Mexico. The man went to clarify it from Belize to Merida to do a doctor checkup because he already had an operation and is going to get the next operation. Now someone put that he went to Tulum and they say that he was arrested and detained by police actually this is wrong news and everybody was accusing the newspaper Por Eso which is a Mexican Newspaper and we will look into it.

Victim Buried – Murder Suspect Still On The Run
Funeral services for 61-year-old Agripina Coc of San Pedro Columbia, Toledo took place this morning. Paul Mahung reporting… PAUL MAHUNG “The San Pedro Columbia village Mennonite church was packed to capacity while hundreds of others were outside as the funeral service for the murdered elderly female victim Agrippina Coc was held during the morning hours. Thereafter the large crowd of sympathizers and family members ,village leaders and others from other Toledo communities and districts of Belize were in procession with the body to the burial spot at the Columbia village cemetery. Since tragic incident on Saturday evening villagers and village leaders along with the Coc family have kept together in morning efforts and community level activities to denounce the unacceptable criminal act in their village while echoing the village and family cry for justice and capture of a suspect from Columbia who is still at large at the moment even as the late Agrippina is laid to rest. Columbia Village Alcalde Jose Che who was also at the funeral spoke to Love News and gave an update on village search efforts to capture the suspect.”


Man charged for unlicensed firearm
Police believe that 35 year old labourer Deshawn Craig of Caesar Ridge Road, Belize City, may be on the hook for a stolen gun which he allegedly tried to get rid of when police visited his home this week. On Wednesday, Deshawn Craig pleaded not guilty to keeping firearm and ammunition without a gun license, before Magistrate Herbert Panton, who remanded him into custody until October 24. Around 9:50 a.m. on Monday, September 1, police say they were pursuing a man they believed was involved in a robbery attempt, and they went to Craig’s residence. They said that upon their arrival Deshawn Craig ran out of his house and he threw a plastic bag over a fence.

Belizeans Get Free Trip To Lighthouse Reef Courtesy Oceana
In an effort to get more Belizeans to enjoy Belizean resources, and our natural heritage, Oceana in Belize partnered with Belize’s Aududon Society to organize a trip for two Belizeans who had never been to the Lighthouse reef atoll: Prime Minister’s wife Kim Simplis Barrow and her daughter Salima. Mother and daughter were able to enjoy the stunning aerial views of the Blue Hole, which some have considered the 8th wonder of the world. According to Oceana, up to ten thousand tourists visit the Blue Hole and Half Moon Caye natural monuments, however very few of that number, are Belizeans. Vice President of Oceana in Belize Janelle Chanona says that coordinating such experiences where Belizeans enjoy their own natural heritage is central to the organization’s mission.

The Belize Jaguars play their first game
To all Belizean football fans keeping track of the Belize National A Team: Belize played their first game at the Copa Centro Americano at the RFK Stadium in Washington DC. The first game was played on Wednesday against Honduras at 7:30 pm Eastern Time, that was 5:30 pm Wednesday evening. However due to the time lag it will show on Univsion at 9:30 pm. (At news time) The Belize Jaguars are on half time break and are losing 2 to nil as a result of two auto goals. Belize plays against Guatemala on September 7th and El Salvador on September 10th. Our thoughts are with the Belize Jaguars who currently are playing their hearts out.

Man Found Dead In Carozal After Night Of Drinking
There is another family grieving the death of one of their loved ones, whose life was cut short presumably by abuse of alcohol. It was a little after four Wednesday morning when Corozal Police responded to a distress call in the Santa Rita Heights in the Corozal District. According to the brother of the deceased, around three this morning, he went to check on his brother, 38 year old Benito Puerto, a construction worker of Corozal Town. Benito had arrived highly intoxicated the night before. Upon seeing that his brother was motionless and was not breathing he called the Corozal Police Department. Benito’s body was transported to the Corozal Community Hospital where it was pronounced dead. The brother of the deceased added that Benito Puerto had a drinking problem, and for the past two days he was under the influence of alcohol.

Online Article Describes Hondo River As Red After Oil Spill
“Blood red” is how one online news article is describing the Hondo River which boarders Mexico and Belize. Information from other news outlet is that there was an oil spill last week Wednesday August 27th, where a malfunction of an illegal pipeline extracting crude oil caused 4,000 gallons of crude to be spilled in the river. According to several Mexican News articles, the incident occurred in the Hondo stream that passes through Teirra Blanca, a town in Vera Cruz, and not the Rio Hondo. Now if you know anything about maps, you’d know that Vera Cruz is several hundreds of miles West of Belize, closer to Mexico City. But one article, posted in an online newspaper- Ryot, is reporting that the incident occurred in the Rio Hondo saying that, “The Hondo River lines the border between Mexico and Belize. Nearly a mile of the river turned blood red after the spill, which was caused on August 27th when thieves drilled a tap into a gasoline pipeline.”

UB Launches Lekcha Series
The University of Belize’s Faculty of Education and arts launched the First Annual Di Silvaana Udz Lekcha Series on Tuesday. The launching is part of the Jaguar Salon Series, which aims at encouraging students to take up interest in reading and engaging in the literary arts, by exposing them to noteworthy Belizean intellectuals, and writers, and other artists in the field. Ivory Kelly, one of the Organizers of the annual event, told us more. Ivory Kelly – Organizer “It is a part of a broader series of artistic and intellectual events here at the university of Belize, that we have entitled ‘The Jaguar Salon Series,’ a year-round series of events, plays, lectures, and so forth, to broader our students perspective on life, and academic life in particular.

Man charged for unlicensed firearm
Police believe that 35 year old labourer Deshawn Craig of Caesar Ridge Road, Belize City, may be on the hook for a stolen gun which he allegedly tried to get rid of when police visited his home this week. On Wednesday, Deshawn Craig pleaded not guilty to keeping firearm and ammunition without a gun ...

Five mothers receive settlement from KHMH
It was an ugly episode: a common-place bacteria took up residence in one of the leading national hospital’s most sensitive units, and proceeded to kill as many as eight premature infants in the span of three weeks. Even more damagingly, the hospital could not say how the bacteria known as enterobacter cloacae got into the facility. Five of the eight families affected decided to sue, a sixth having already reached a settlement, and on Tuesday, following a lengthy and emotional mediation session presided over by Chief Justice Kenneth Benjamin, a settlement was agreed. Not all of it is public purview, but attorney for the families Kareem Musa was able to share some details.

KHMH CEO reflects on tenure
Dr. Gary Longsworth’s contract has not been renewed, ending his six-year tenure at the nation’s top hospital. Unfortunately, it was marked by scandal, affecting everything from mismanagement of pharmaceuticals to the deaths of premature babies in the Neonatal Intensive Care Unit. We asked him about it all.

COLA marches toward appeal of Penner decision
In July of 2014, the private prosecution of Cayo Northeast area representative Elvin Penner was tossed out of Belmopan Magistrate’s Court for lack of evidence. Citizens Organized for Liberty through Action (COLA) has planned an appeal and on Tuesday we had an update from attorney Kareem Musa. Kareem Musa – Attorney 1“In relation to the appeal for Penner, no. The grounds of appeal, we have received the notes of evidence from the Magistrate in Belmopan, and we have fourteen days which will expire, I believe, this Friday, within which to file the grounds of appeal. So after that, then a date will be set.

Patrick JonesPJ

Christian Workers’ Union demands meeting with First Caribbean Bank
The employee at the center of First Caribbean International Bank’s current troubles over alleged discrimination has resigned, giving two months’ notice. But she wants an apology for alleged discrimination and proper benefits, according to Christian Workers’ Union president Audrey Matura-Shepherd, whose union represents a majority of the branch’s employees. […]

National History Lecture discusses Battle of St. George’s Caye
The Battle of St. George’s Caye is a historical fact, despite efforts by some to suggest otherwise. 216 years after the naval engagement off Belize’s coast, however, the question two historians attempted to answer today was: is the Battle important and relevant to modern Belize, and if so, […]

Mechanic accused of dishonestly taking payment for vehicle
An auto mechanic is being accused of taking payments for a vehicle he never actually sold. Elizardo Ochoa, 28, of a Casuarina Street address, pleaded not guilty to obtaining property by deception after he agreed to have the case heard in the lower court before Magistrate Herbert Panton. […]

Man charged for unlicensed firearm
Police believe that 35 year old laborer Deshawn Craig of Caesar Ridge Road may be on the hook for a stolen gun which he allegedly tried to get rid of when police visited his home this week. Craig pleaded not guilty to keeping firearm and ammunition without a […]

Blue Creek villagers continue to call for the removal of Chairman
Residents of Blue Creek village, Toledo continue to advocate for the removal of the chairman of the village council Heraldo Pop. The villagers are accusing Pop of corruption after a letter purportedly written to a local businessman and including the name of the First Alcalde, without his permission, […]

GSU finds marijuna in early morning operation in Mahogany Heights
A woman’s Prada brand bag was found chock-full of marijuana early on Tuesday morning in Mahogany Heights village, Belize district. The Gang Suppression Unit reports that it conducted an early morning operation in the village starting at 5:15 am on Tuesday targeting several houses which the GSU […]

Preschool teachers in the Cayo District gear up for new school year
Preschool Head Teachers and Local Managers in the Cayo District schools met September 3rd at Oasis Preschool Grounds to discuss the way forward for the 2014-2015 school year. Mr. Pablo Chan, Education Officer in charge of Curriculum Matters spoke about the role of the principals, school managers […]

Paving of the Belize-Corozal road underway
The government of Belize has begun delivering on a promised national road infrastructure program which will see the investment of close to $76 million nationwide. The Ministry of Public Works is currently carrying out the first phase of paving of the Phillip Goldson Highway in Orange Walk, […]

Corozal man found dead in his house
A Corozal man is dead … and alcohol poisoning may be the cause. 38 year old Benito Puerto was found dead early this morning inside his home in the Santa Rita Heights area of Corozal town. Family members say that on Tuesday night, Puerto arrived home intoxicated and […]


Tiger Beach Club: Super Cool New Indian Spot Opens on Placencia Peninsula
I love Indian food. So…when I heard that a swanky new spot was opening just north of Seine Bight village on the Placencia Peninsula, I knew I’d want to try it eventually. And then I found out that the place was being opened by Frankie Gagliano and I REALLY wanted to go. The designer of places like Rumfish y Vino (he sold it even before it opened) in Placencia, Fuego Restaurant in San Ignacio and DragonFly Moon (I actually first met him there) has beautiful taste and makes all his spots look impossibly cool. We moved to the table and ordered a feast. Or what looked like a feast. The three dishes (one of each – chicken, lamb and fish) come in their own bowls for sharing but what also arrives are countless smaller bowls of side dishes like lentil dhal and chutneys, yogurt sauces, condiments, toppings, herbs and spiced rices.

5 Reasons Why September in Belize is Awesome!
There’s no better time to visit someone than during their birthday party! September is the biggest month on the Belize social calendar, and for the savvy traveller, it’s one of the best times to visit this exuberant yet laid back little tropical paradise. Here’s five reasons why 1. September marks the start of the longest holiday season in the hemisphere From September 10, when the nation comes alive to commemorate the 1798 Battle of St George’s Caye until New Year’s Day, Belize is in fiesta mode. St George’s Caye Day is followed by Independence Day on September 21, which is followed by Day of the Americas (which those of you over the age of 12 may remember as Columbus Day) on October 12. Then there’s Garifuna Settlement Day on November 19, leading up to Christmas Day and Boxing Day, with Halloween as well as local celebrations and religious observations thrown in for good measure.

Soft opening of Rain Restaurant Ambergris caye
More fantastic lighting at the inside restaurant area, the chandelier was absolutely gorgeous and just the kind of design I would pick if I had a house with a large open space. Since we do not have super high ceilings at the taco shack, I settled for hanging mid size disco balls by my windows for my cool lighting effects. Leisa and I arrived first and could not wait for the others to start feasting so we ordered drinks and coconut shrimp. It was not long before a few more showed up and more food orders went in. I went with the lobster squash ravioli as my main course and it was delicious. Soon as Leisa and I were done our ravioli, and Cowboy wandered in and joined our table. When I saw creme brulee on the dessert menu, I knew I had to order it. It was a good size, flamed perfectly with that light crispy layer on top that cracks like thin ice and all that creamy sweet goodness underneath. For a soft opening everything went pretty well, in Belize that special events can often be a behind the scenes comedy of errors. After we were finished our meal,Victoria came around and did some quality control, we gave her our feedback on a couple of minor things could be improved and she was receptive to what we said.

The Battle of Saint Georges Caye
After a few treaties in negotiating rights and opportunities to live and cut, first logwood, used for dyes at the time in Europe and then mahogany – still being used today for furniture and inside houses. Whatever happened in Europe between England and Spain directly affected the Caribbean and what is today Belize in Central America. It is only fitting to state that England and Spain did not really care for each other too much then. One of the problems for Spain, even though they entered fair negotiations on what was their property in Central America, (British) Honduras (today Belize), was entitlement of land. The English sat on the land, then British Honduras and even though were kicked out several times between 1715-1760, they resiliently returned and grew their roots. Note that, the Spanish never once attempted to make a home in Belize. The English made it a home – away from home – as primarily, there was economic opportunity here for them and more, freedom.

International Sourcesizz

Stunning energy and climate development in Samoa
Over 150 delegates and members of the international development community from more than 45 countries were stunned to see leader after leader approach the podium to sign a historic sustainable energy and climate resilience treaty that will significantly change the lives and destiny of over 20 million small islanders, for the better. The treaty was signed by the governments of Barbados, Belize, Bahamas, Dominica, Cabo Verde, Cook Islands, Dominican Republic, Fiji, Grenada, Guinea Bissau, Kiribati, Niue, Palau, St Kitts and Nevis, St Vincent and the Grenadines, Samoa, Seychelles, and Tuvalu.

Own-goals propel Honduras past Belize
WASHINGTON, D.C. – Honduras benefited from a pair of own-goals to register a 2-0 win over Belize in the first 2014 Central American Cup match for each on Wednesday at Robert F. Kennedy Memorial Stadium. The Group A victory extended Hondurans’ streak of conceding one goal or fewer in the competition to 16 games. In new head coach Hernan Medford’s debut, the 2014 FIFA World Cup participant became the first team in tournament history to reach the 100-goal mark. The second own-goal enabled it to hit the milestone, but it came as a result of another CCA first – two own-goals in the same game. From the start, Honduras looked sharp and played with purposeful intent. Forward Antony Lozano embodied that adventuresome spirit for a side that looked distinctively different from the one that lost all three games at Brazil 2014 only two months ago. Early on, the Olimpia standout had an effort from seven-yards out blocked by goalkeeper Woodrow West and saw a bicycle kick whistle past the right post.

Copa Centroamericana: Get the latest results as the tournament kicks off
The 2014 Copa Centroamericana kicked off Wednesday, and it is being played for the first time in the United States. Click here for a preview of Wednesday's action and check below for recaps of the evening's action at RFK Stadium, and be sure to check up on's Copa Centroamericana homepage for the latest information on the tournament.

King Ras John and the coolie Connection bring reggae magic to Ethnic Fest
King Ras John and the Coolie Connection bring their reggae magic to Walker Sept. 13 for Ethnic Fest XXII. The band will play on Stage Two on Fourth Street from 4:30 to 5:45 p.m. and return to the Walker American Legion Post at 7:30 p.m. for Ethnic After Hours. King Ras John was born in the Caribbean nation of Belize, Central America. He grew up in a family of musicians, listening to the Puntarama and Soca music of the south of Belize. The Coolie Connection was originally made up of family, cousins and friends, but the band continues with that name. A self-taught guitarist, King Ras John composes his own music, performing improvisational reggae, Puntarama, Soca, Ddub and much more.

Mexican authorities say a mass die-off of fish at a lake in western Mexico was not due to natural causes, but the causes are still being investigated and one research said that low water levels could have been responsible. Over 53 metric tons of rotting fish have been removed from Lake Cajititlan in western Jalisco state, the state environment department said late Sunday. Workers using shovels, a bulldozer, boats and wheel barrels removed the dead fish, which are being sent for testing. Workers wore masks to ward off the smell of rotting fish. The small, finger-sized fish are apparently a type of chub. The cause of the die-off has not been determined; samples of the dead fish have been sent to laboratories for testing. The state environment department said late Sunday it was not due to natural causes.

Alcohol poisoning may have caused death
Alcohol poisoning may have attributed to the death of 38 year old Benito Puerto of Corozal Town. Puerto was found dead early this morning inside his home in the Santa Rita Heights area of Corozal Town. Accordingly to family members last night, Puerto arrived home intoxicated and went to bed. Around 3 o’clock this morning, they went to check on him and found him motionless and not breathing. That was when a distress call was made to the Corozal Police who responded and transported the body to the Corozal town community hospital. Family members of Benito Puerto say that he had a drinking problem and had been under the influence of alcohol for the last couple of days.


Video: Half Moon Caye trip, 3min.
by Oceana Belize. Stunning aerial views and interviews, including the wife of the Prime Minister Kim Simplis Barrow and their daughter, Salima.

Video: Texas Tech Students Help Market Belize Banana Farm Tour, 2min.
The agricultural communications campaigns class traveled to Belize for a study abroad trip in 2014. During their visit they conducted research to help Bunches of Fun Banana Farm Tour promote their business though techniques they learned in class. After the students returned, they used the remainder of the semester to prepare a communications campaign for Bunches of Fun in addition to a social media plan and a video.

Video: Yeniden Yeryüzü - Belize'nin Saklı Hazinesi, 6min.
Mobilya üretimi, ağaç kesimine neden oluyor ancak ormanlara zarar vermeden de ahşap malzeme elde etmek mümkün. Belize’nin yağmur ormanlarında ağaç kesiminin yoğun olduğu yıllarda ağaç kütükleri taşınırken nehirlerin dibine batmış. Suların derinliğindeki sayısız tomruk çürümeden asırlarca kendini koruyabilmiş. Çevreci bir ekip bu durumdan yararlanıp tomrukları nehrin dibinden çıkararak ağaç kesimini azaltmış. Yeniden Yeryüzü bu bölümde, kayıp tomrukların izini sürmek için Belize’de.

Video: Honduras vs Belize CONCACAF Highlights, 4min.

Video: Sisters of Charity of Nazareth in Ministry, 4min.
Since 1812 the Sisters of Charity of Nazareth risk their lives and resources in promoting the dignity and equality of women and oppressed people in the world. In the pioneer spirit of the foundress Catherine Spalding, impelled by the love of Christ, Sisters carry out ministries in education, health care, pastoral outreach, systemic change, social justice and women’s empowerment in Belize, Botswana, India, Nepal and the United States.

Video: Adaptive SCUBA Belize June 2014, 14min.
5 friends SCUBA dive in Belize, 3 are paralyzed but unstoppable.

Video: Traveling In Belize, 4min.
A little video about what Belize has to offer for curious travelers.

Video: Having fun in Mexico, Belize, and Honduras, 14min.
Went on a cruise with my family to Mexico, Belize, and Honduras! Here is a small glimpse of what we did!

Portofino Resort- Now with a new BEACH BAR!!
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