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Belmopan Mayor discusses residents’ concerns
Mayor Simeon Lopez, Mayor of the Capital City of Belmopan, appeared on Rise and Shine morning show Wednesday morning, to address various issues of concern to residents of Belmopan.
Topics ranged from street works happening in the city, renovations of the Civic Center and the relocation of the market...
Work Soon On Maya Mopan Bridge
On Tuesday we told you about the bridge in Maya Mopan, Belmopan, that is in need of some urgent repairs. The bridge, which has been standing for some 15 years, has been deteriorating over time making it hazardous for vehicles to cross...
Belmopan Market is a Parking Lot; Mayor Had No Say
Simeon Lopez, Mayor of Belmopan, addressed the matters concerned with the controversial Belmopan Tuesday/Friday Market, and the 2.2 million dollar grant given to the Government by the European Union to build a Market.
But before we get into the money matters, we first asked the Mayor to definitive...
Market Rent Increased $2 Since Renovations Begun
The Mayor of Belmopan, Simeon Lopez, recounted the Vendors’ plight when the City Council moved towards a change in the financial regime under which they operated from.
Mayor Simeon Lopez explained the backdrop of that story
Simeon Lopez – Mayor of Belmopan
“Before they left, they were paying ten...
PUP drops Arthur Saldivar as Standard Bearer
On Wednesday, the main opposition People’s United Party (PUP)’s National Executive decided to remove Arthur Saldivar as its Standard Bearer for the Belize Rural North Constituency, as well as from its National Executive...
Murder reported in Belize City
There was a mid-afternoon murder in Belize City.
The shooters, who visited a yard on Dean Street and Euphrates Avenue on Wednesday afternoon around 2:00 p.m., did not get their man, but they did end the life of another and sent a third to the hospital...
Fatal Traffic Accident on Southern Highway
There was a fatal traffic accident on the Southern Highway early Wednesday morning. A police officer died in that accident.
29-year-old Police Constable Marvin Sedacy of Cattle Landing, who was serving with the Traffic Department in Toledo, died around mile 4 on the Southern Highway, when the Ford E...
Patriotic Forum In Belmopan Considers Our Future
There was a forum held in Belmopan on Tuesday night as part of the September celebrations, reflecting on Belize at 33 years of Independence...
Man looks for his 15 year old Daughter
Francis Coc, a resident of Maya Mopan area, Belmopan, is calling on the public’s assistance in locating his 15 year old daughter Briana Barrie Coc. According to Mr Coc, on Monday, September 14th, after what seemed like a normal day, his daughter apparently went missing.
Man Charged For Murder Of Ariel Diaz
On Monday we told you about the body of Ariel Diaz, who was found on Saturday somewhere in the Duck Run three area, Spanish Lookout, with his head almost completely decapitated.
On Wednesday, Luven Perrez, a Guatemalan National, who is believed to have been socializing with Ariel Diaz prior to his m...
Assault charge dropped after witness changes testimony
The accuser of a man remanded on murder and attempted murder charges now says police forced him to make a statement implicating 22 year old Deondray McKoy, in an incident of aggravated assault...
GSU bust man with unlicensed firearm
The Gang Suppression Unit (GSU) say they took another firearm off the streets.
22 year old Gildon Rivers of Antelope Street Extension, Belize City, was remanded after pleading not guilty to keeping a firearm without a gun license, when he appeared before Chief Magistrate Ann Marie Smith.
On Monday, ...
Objections Raised to Proposed Upgrade of Government House in Belize City
On September 10, during ceremonies to mark the 216th anniversary of the Battle of St...
Erotic and Jump Street Posse Mash Up the Place!
There were fourteen bands registered for this year’s Carnival Road March and at the end of the day one band was allegedly disqualified, one was M.I.A. and two were crowned champions.
Registered to compete in the junior large band category were Pickstock Carnival Band from the Victoria Street area, Jump Street Posse from the Albert Street area, Sunshine Masqueraders from the Yarborough (Southside) area and Trenchtown Masqueraders from the Bailar area. Dynamic Dancers and Western Paradise were registered in the small band category. Registered to compete in the senior large band category this year were Eternity Mass Band from Lake Independence, Mother Nature’s Creation from the St. Thomas Street area, Soca Warriors Mass Band from near Queen Square Primary School, Erotic Carnival Band from Caribbean Shores area and Soca Moca Carnival Band from the Rogers Stadium area. Registered to compete as senior small bands were Belizean Jewels from Euphrates Avenue, Evolution Mass Band from the Fort George area and Rampage Carnival Band.
Hogs throw Hog outa Hog Pen! PUP gets rid of Arthur Saldivar
We cannot begin to imagine what kind of soul-searching the PUP must have gone through in the past 21 days but it appears that they believe they have found something that resembles it. This, after they decided to once and for all rid themselves of Arthur Saldivar. Saldivar has a whirlwind of allegations of impropriety swirling about him and the stench that is rising from these allegations is too much for even the PUP to handle.
This party which is known and is proven to be the most corrupt in this country is holding its nose while simultaneously casting Arthur Saldivar out of their hog pen. Their leader, Francis Fonseca, boldly made the declaration on Wednesday afternoon during a press conference. Saldivar was immediately removed from his position as PUP standard Bearer and member of the national executive of their party.
Fonseca says the decision was taken after they reviewed the outcome of a so-called investigation which was carried about Saldivar’s behavior. In typical PUP fashion, the outcome of the investigation was not made public so what it did or did not uncover about Saldivar’s behavior will never
Saint Catherine’s Academy floats Bond to finance Multipurpose Student Center
Administrators of Saint Catherine’s Academy announced on Monday, September 15 that they will be floating a bond to finance a Multipurpose Student Center. The bond will be for $2,850,000 and will be in three series for 10, 20 and 25 years. The bond will be initially earn 4% interest with a step up to 5% at the end of 10 years and 6% at the end of 20 years. The bond issuance will be done in denomination of $1000 dollars and similar units thereafter.
According to the institution, the finances will be used for the center which will house a basketball court, cafeteria, locker rooms, showers, public restrooms as well as a stage to accommodate performances and commencement exercises at the institution. The upper floor of the building will have a fitness center, toilet facilities and a dormitory.
Work Continues in the Twin Towns of San Ignacio and Santa Elena
Major infrastructural works continue in the Twin Towns of San Ignacio and Santa Elena as preparations are being made to infuse more funds into the area to boost employment. Major streets in the busiest section of San Ignacio Town have recently been completed bringing back to normal the free flow of traffic in the area.
The section of Burns Avenue bordered by Atlantic Bank, Scotia Bank and the Belize Bank has been upgraded to cement and with a 4 feet tiled sidewalk at a cost of $150,000.00 A former deteriorated section in front of the San Igancio Police Station, know as King Street, has also been cemented at a cost of $225,000.00
The greatly improved aesthetics and permanency of roads in the business section of San Ignacio was done by PEC Company Ltd from Red Creek and could not have been done by the San Igancio and Santa Elena Town Council alone.
Old School blast White Eagles in Vega Cup Tournament
The Vega Cup Tournament continued on Sunday, September 14, at the Trial Farm Football Field in Orange Walk with four games on the schedule.
In the first game of the day played, Old School blasted White Eagles FC by the score of 9-1. White Eagles were the first to get onto the scoreboard when Osmy Medina scored his team’s only goal of the game in the 8th minute of play to give his team a temporary lead.
Meanwhile, the goals for Old School were scored by Eliazar Itza in the 14th, 25th, 28th, 62nd, 73rd, and 83rd minutes of play, Oliver Hendricks in the 17th minute of play, Adlair Chan in the 83rd minute of play and an auto goal by number 39 of White Eagles.
Oscar Quiroz Jr. of Western Spirit captures September Criterium
The Cycling Federation of Belize in partnership with the Belize City Council and Leslie’s Imports sponsored the Annual September Criterium held on Sunday, September 14, 2014, on Albert and Regent Streets downtown Belize City.
In the Elite Category, it was Oscar Quiroz Jr. of Western Spirit that captured first place in the 30 laps event. Darnell Barrow of SMART took 2nd place, Giovanni Lovell of BTL took 3rd place, and Nissan Arana of Predators took 4th place while Gregory Lovell also of BTL took 5th place.
In the junior category, 1st place went to Keion Robateau of BECOL Uprising. The second rider to cross the finish line was Tariq Flowers of Benny’s Megabytes, third place went to Kaydin Pinello of BECOL, fourth place went to Delon Gentle of BECOL Uprising and fifth place went to Zahir Figueroa also of BECOL Uprising.
Sagitun FFB President’s Cup champions
The Football Federation of Belize 2014 President’s Cup came to an end on Saturday, September 13, at the Michael Ashcroft Stadium with the second and final game of the championship.
In the game played, Sagitun FC and the visiting San Antonio FC played to a 3-3 draw. However, because Sagitun FC had won game one by the score of 2-1, Sagitun was crowned the champions of the President’s Cup tournament by an aggregate score.
Sagitun FC got on the scoreboard first when Delone Torres scored the 1st goal of the game in the 10th minute of play to give his team a 1-0 lead. The lead was extended when Delone Torres scored his 2nd goal of the game in the 17th minute of play for a 2-0 lead. Still in the first half of the game, Sagitun FC scored yet again this time when Rollin Burgess scored his team’s 3rd and final goal of the game in the 25th minute of play for a 3-0 lead.
Cycling Federation to hold Test Races towards National Team
The Cycling Federation of Belize will be holding its second and third test races this coming Saturday September 20, 2014 and on Monday September 22, 2014.
The second test race is scheduled for Saturday September 20, 2014 commencing at 2:00 pm on the Boom Circuit.
The third test race is scheduled for Monday September 22, 2014, commencing at 2:00 pm on the Princess Margaret Drive between the SJC Round-About to A Street.
Securities Fraud suspects await extradition
For the past week, Belize has been making major news in different business newspapers in the US and the region after the US Department of Justice unsealed a case in New York which named 6 defendants who have ties to the country and have been doing business in the offshore sector. In that multi-count indictment, US authorities are accusing these men of helping more than 100 US citizens and residents to defraud the US Government of approximately 1 billion Belize dollars in a tax evasion scheme.
These businessmen are Bahamians 34 year old Kelvin Leach, 29 year old Rohn Knowles; Canadians, 44 year-old Cem “Jim” Can, and 45 year-old Brian De Wit; 70 year-old American Robert “Bob” Bandfield; and the only Belizean, 51 year-old Andrew Godfrey. They have been named in the indictment including 6 corporate defendants (meaning that their businesses are being treated as defendants) IPC Management Services, LLC; IPC Corporate Services Inc.; IPC Corporate Services LLC (collectively, IPC Corp); Titan International Securities, Inc. (Titan); Legacy Global Markets S.A. (Legacy); and Unicorn International Securities LLC. All 12 of these defendants are accused of conspiracy to commit securities fraud, tax fraud, and money laundering.
Cop dies in traffic incident
A police officer from the Punta Gorda Police Station was killed in a terrible traffic accident on the Southern Highway on Wednesday, September 17.
It happened between miles 3 and 4 at around 7:45 a.m., when 28 year-old Constable Marvin Sedassey was driving his brown Ford Escort car heading toward his home in Cattle Landing. Police aren't sure at this time what caused the accident, but the constable's vehicle ended up in the lane of a white freight truck. The head-on collision crushed and compressed the front end of the escort and Sedassey died from massive head and body injuries he suffered on impact.
Alden Sutherland Arraigned for Arson
Hector Choj, Manager of JEC, was the victim of arson when his $60,000 grey 2008 Toyota Tacoma was set on fire on Sunday, September 14. On Wednesday, September 17, police escorted Alden Sutherland, 39, to the Belize City Magistrates Court since they believe he is the man responsible for starting the fire.
In a report to police, Choj said he parked his vehicle on Saturday, September 13, around 8:30 a.m. in front of his apartment on Youth for the Future Drive. At about 2 a.m. on Sunday, September 14, he was informed by a security guard from the JEC Company that his vehicle was on fire. By the time Choj rushed downstairs to check the security guard had already out the fire. Destroyed was a grey fiberglass wheel valued at $1,183, a Hankook tire valued at $581 and a bed liner which was in the pan of the truck valued at $2,126.21.
Francis Fonseca does not know the difference between a Trade Agreement and a Loan!
Journalist Jules Vasquez has planted a bee in the head of Leader of Opposition Francis Fonseca. That bee has obviously become an annoying buzz in Fonseca’s head, a head which under normal circumstances would have been devoid of any idea much less a thought. Now the often subdued Fonseca is wondering out loud whether a TRADE BALANCE due to Petrocaribe from the purchase of fuel and oils is a loan that should require approval by Parliament.
Not being a LAWYER as is Fonseca, one will choose to apply logic here.
• The balance being debated is as a result of a trade. Belize received fuel and oil (commodities) for 40% of value paid in the short term and 60% on preferential terms.
• The exchange of goods and service is continuous and volumes dynamic as is consistent with TRADE.
• The extension of preferential payment terms is at the discretion of the CREDITOR and to the best of ones knowledge did not require a sovereign Government guarantee.
• LOANS have fixed value fixed terms and occur once and normally involve transfer of CASH, not exchange of continuous goods and services.
Fuentes pays himself before doing the people’s work
Viewers almost shed a tear for Anthony Fuentes as he appeared on television on September 9th claiming that he did nothing wrong when he tied the subvention which Punta Gorda town receives to a private loan which he owes at the Toledo Teachers Credit Union.
A loan agreement which the Guardian has received shows that in May of this year the Town Board entered into a loan agreement with the credit union for $32,187.42 the money was supposedly counterpart funding of 2% under the Belize Municipal Development Project. There is great concern whether the council should have even entered into this arrangement especially since the town is completely strapped for cash, being unable to even carry out its rudimentary functions. More worrying is that there was no approval granted for the loan to be made by the ministry of finance as is required by law.
Young Motivator Awarded Key to Belize City
Anthony Gabourel Gill is no ordinary 12-year-old California kid. He is a youth motivator whose speech delivery has been compared to that of the legendary Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Gill has been visiting Belize for the past three years to speak to primary and secondary school students and in recognition of his contributions to Belize the Mayor of Belize City, His Worship Darrel Bradley, presented him with the Keys to Belize City on Monday, September 15.
Mayor Bradley says presenting the Key to the City to Anthony Gill is “perhaps the best presentation I have been able to do as Mayor”. Bradley says, “He is a force for good in the world. He is a force for change.” Mayor Bradley says the Key to the City is reserved for visiting members of government, statesmen and people who have made significant contributions to Belize City. The Mayor says, “You Anthony stand tallest among them even though [in terms of height] you may be the shortest among them.”
Two faced Lisa Shoman speaks against and condones domestic violence
On Monday, August 12th 2013, PUP Port Loyola Standard Bearer Gilroy Usher Sr. was charged with Harm after beating his 51 year old wife, Magdalena Usher, in the head with, of all things, a pint bottle. Now it’s terrible enough to beat a woman, but to beat a 51 year old woman in the head with a pint bottle, well you be the judge of that. Usher appeared in the Belize City Magistrate’s Court to answer the charges to which he pleaded not guilty, he was offered a $900 bail and his case was adjourned to the 25th September of the same year. At the time of setting the adjournment the Magistrate ordered that, “he attends the Batterers Intervention Program at the Women’s Department. He must also not interfere with the complainant” – in this case his wife – and he must temporarily move in with his daughter at Lizarraga Avenue. In a subsequent Press release on the same day Gilroy announced that the matter had been amicably resolved and that Magdalena would withdraw her complaint. Many wondered at the time why the complaint was withdrawn but it is the complainant’s prerogative to do so. In Magdalena’s case allegations abounded that Hon. Dolores Balderamos Garcia accompanied by, you guessed it, attorney Lisa Shoman herself, visited the complainant and persuaded her to withdraw the charges.
Murder and retaliation in the City
At press time on Wednesday night, September 17, police sources told our newsroom that there were 3 separate shootings in the City, and it is believed that they are all connected with the murder 56 year-old Cyril McFoy Robinson which happened 5 hours earlier.
McFoy Robinson was inside his yard at around 2 p.m. at the corner of Dean Street and Euphrates Avenue, which is right beside St. Ignatius Primary School. He was playing dominoes with 3 other men when a gunman ambushed them and fired shots into the crowd. 45 year-old Sean Cherrington was shot in the leg while McFoy Robinson was injured in the head. He died on the spot while police managed to rush Cherrington to the hospital for treatment.
It is believed that Robinson was not the intended target for that shooting, and that the gunman may have been looking for Robinson's son, Brandon "BT" Tillett, who was reportedly on the scene but managed to escape when the bullets started flying.
Body found in Cayo almost decapitated
A body was found in the Cayo District which had almost been decapitated. At about 4:40 am on Sunday of this past weekend, police responded to a report that a male person was lying on a street on Duck Run Three in the Spanish Lookout Area. The body was found in an area known as Emerald Trail and it was that of a Hispanic descent man with low hair cut. He was wearing a grey in color t-shirt with blue jeans pants.
On further inspection, the authorities identified the male person as being 34 year old Guatemalan laborer of Duck Run Three, Pedro Ariel Diaz Guillen, who had a large cut to the upper body, near the neck almost severing the neck.
Moses Coc clubbed to death in San Pedro
For 2014, San Pedro has been experiencing a spike in violent crimes on the island, and in the last 2 weeks, there have been 2 murders.
The latest one happened on Saturday, September 13 at around 11 p.m. 31 year-old Moses Coc, a salesman who lived on Sea Grape Drive on the Island, was walking with his friend on Swan Street when they were attacked by a dark skinned man. That man continuously clubbed Coc in the back of the head with a piece of wood until he collapsed on the ground. He was picked up by a passing vehicle and transported to the Polyclinic, but the injuries to the head were too severe. He succumbed to his injures while he was being attended to by one of the doctors.
Contraband goods found in Western Belize
An operation launched by San Ignacio Police at around 2:20 pm last Friday has netted goods that had not passed legally through Belize’s Western Border gateway at Customs. As a result of this and other incidents, efforts are now being made to improve on security at Belize’s border.
On the strength of a search warrant, Police visited the residence of a couple on the Paslow Falls Road in Bullet Tree, at first officers did not find anything illegal. On further inspection of their yard, Police found two large holes in the ground measuring four feet in depth and five feet in width covered by zinc and lumber over which were coconut leaves, branches and dirt. An assortment of soft drinks were found by Police, along with 153 cases of beer and 64 cases of beer at another location under-ground.
As a result of this incident, Cleofido Balan and Virginia Balan, along with the goods, were taken to the Custom Station on the Benque Viejo Border.
Brandon Walter Escarpeta Convicted for G...
A Belize City teenager who chose to lie to the police about his real name must pay the court $105 by November 30, 2014 or serve two months in prison. 18-year-old Brandon Walter Escarpeta of #27 Berkeley Street in Belize City is accused of committing a mischievous act when he told police on Tuesday, September 16, that his name was David Walter Escarpeta when he knew his true name to be Brandon Walter Escarpeta.
Escarpeta appeared in court on Wednesday, September 17, before Magistrate Dale Cayetano where he was unrepresented and wasted no time by pleading guilty to the offense. Since the offense is a misdemeanor and it was Escarpeta’s first offense for such a matter, he was imposed a non-custodial sentence in a fine of $100 plus $5 cost of court fee.
Man fine $100 for walking an un muzzled ...
On Thursday September 4 Ian Herrera appeared before Chief Magistrate Anne Marie Smith where he was charged with permitting an unmuzzled ferocious dog to be at large, being a Pit Bull. He wasted no time and pleaded guilty to the offence for which he was fined $100 and $5 cost of court. In court Herrera told the Chief Magistrate that the dog was actually like a Chihuahua who likes to wag its tail and is friendly. To this the Chief Magistrate replied that a Pit Bull is not a friendly dog and she then fined him.
Herrera has until September 12 to pay the fine in default, 1 month imprisonment.
Paul Morgan killed on King Street
Police continue to investigate the murder of 40 year-old Paul Rubio Morgan, who was shot and killed on King Street on Friday night at around 8 p.m. At this time, it is being investigated as a drug related, or gang related shooting because Morgan is reputed to have been a drug peddler.
He was seated in his green and white Ford Explorer, which was parked at #37 Kings Street, and that's when a lone gunman on bicycle took advantage of the opportunity to ambush him. That shooter fired several shots at him, injuring him in the head, chin and left eye, rode off before police arrived a short time later. Morgan was rushed to the KHMH within a very short time later, but he died of the serious injuries he received.
GSU Busts Gildon Rivers with Empty .380 ...
The Gang Suppression Unit has taken another dangerous gun off the streets of Belize City. On Monday, September 15, 22-year-old Gildon Rivers was busted inside his home with an empty .380 revolver.
Acting upon information received, the GSU raided the home of Rivers located at #96 Antelope Street Extension. The officers charged into the house and found Rivers holding the .380 revolver. When Rivers saw it was the police he dropped the firearm and police took him into custody. No bullet was found in the gun.
National Women’s Softball
The XXIV National Women’s Softball Championship will be played from October 3-5, 2014, at Rogers Stadium.
The National Softball Championship is played between the champions and sub-champions of the Affiliated Associations that makes up the National Federation.
The championship will feature from Belize City Belize Bank Bulldogs (Champions) and Beacon (Sub-champions), from Belize Rural Sunrise of Lord’s Bank (Champions) and Burrell Boom Orchid Girls (sub-champions), from the Cayo Association Roaring Creek Grace Kennedy (champions) and Esperanza Wolverines (sub-champions) and from Orange Walk Carmelita’s Caribbean Queen the number one seed.
The championship will commence on Friday, October 3rd at 6:30 pm with game one between Beacon and Roaring Creek and this will be followed by game two, which will see Belize Bank Bulldogs against the Esperanza Wolverines.
The championship will then continue on Saturday October 4, 2014, commencing at 9:00 am with a total of six games, and then the championship will concludes on Sunday October 5, with five more games.
A Reenergized GSU
Inspector Mark Flowers took reigns of the Gang Suppression Unit four weeks ago and since he did so there has been a reenergized unit once again operating in the streets. The unit which earned its reputation as riding hard and fast on criminal elements in the city had gone into a state of dormancy. During that spate, the gangs in the city flared up and the shootings were persistent with regular shootings taking place in the city.
Flowers told the Guardian that under his watch he has increased the operational presence of the unit, driven solely by intelligence. He himself accompanies the officers at times he added. At this point in time he said the unit’s primary concern is criminal activity through gangs which orchestrate all manner of criminality including armed robberies and retaliatory action against one another.
Belmopan PUP Mayoral Candidate has mixed loyalties
Jose Chacon is the Mayoral candidate for the People's United Party in Belmopan and he is but months from declaring his candidacy and baggage is already being exposed. The Guardian Newspaper is reliably informed that this Chacon was born in El Salvador and has political aspirations in Belize. There is absolutely nothing wrong with this, but Chacon needs to decide whether he will be a politician in Belize or a politician in his home country.
Reports are that during the last elections in El Salvador he was one of the main organizers to coordinate Salvadorans living in Belize to travel to their home country to vote for the winning party the FMLN. And there is absolutely nothing wrong with that, after all ties with home countries are never torn or erased. What is wrong however is that this Chacon character is a politico in El Salvador and is now attempting to enter political office in Belize. This leaves us to ask, where will his alliance really at. Will it be in Belize for the people of Belmopan or in El Salvador. Residents of Belmopan need to ask him that question when next they see him, if they ever do.
MOWT Signs More Contracts for Infrastructural Works
Today, Minister of Works and Transport, Hon. Rene Montero, signed more contracts for infrastructural works at the Ministry of Works and Transport Conference Room in the City of Belmopan. The works include:
• The pavement of five miles of the old Northern Highway with hot mix asphalt cement commencing from the intersection of Phillip Goldson Highway and the old Northern Highway. The works will be executed by Rodla Construction at a cost of BZ$3,498,675.00;
• Concrete pavement of Olivia Sentino and Cayo Streets in Punta Gorda Town and the concrete pavement of Ramos Road and a section of Ecumenical Drive (from highway to bridge) in Dangriga Town. Both projects will be executed by Cisco Construction Limited at a cost of BZ$662,523.00 and BZ$782,907.00, respectively;
• Construction of a four-leg roundabout at the intersection of the George Price Highway, Faber’s Road and Lake Independence Boulevard. The 150 feet roundabouts will be constructed out of reinforced concrete. A similar roundabout will be constructed on the Phillip Goldson Highway to regulate traffic flow at the intersection with Chetumal Street. The works will also be executed by Cisco Construction Limited at a cost of BZ$3.6M;
September Celebrations Events held in Cayo
A series of events relating to the September Celebrations have been successfully held in the Cayo District. In all these events there was a constant reminder of this year’s Tenth of September theme, “Industrious Hands, Intelligent Minds, Together for Belize!”
For the first time ever, Zone Ten Neighborhood Watch and the Cayo Neighborhood Watch Association (CNWA) joined forces for the morning of September 10th with a parade through the principal streets of Santa Elena Town into San Igancio Town.
“It was great and well supported for a first time Santa Elena parade. The crowd was hype and exited with the presence of Lova Boy and Ernistine Carballo,” said Ernie Braun, President of the CNWA.
Later during the day of September 10th, official ceremonies were held at the Administration Building in San Ignacio Town. It was an opportunity for outgoing Queen of the West, Vania Patt, to again hand over her crown to incoming Queen Carmelita A. Lara. In her speech the new Queen of the West for 2014-2015, Carmelita Lara, said she was accepting the crown with pride and dignity and thanked the Mayor of San Ignacio and Santa Elena, John August, and the September Celebrations Committee for organizing the Tenth events. Mayor John August also took the opportunity to inspect a standing guard of Belize Defense Force soldiers.
Primary Schools in Cayo receive much needed computer equipment
Some eight primary schools received on September 4, 2014 at the Sacred Heart College Campus in San Ignacio Town, a considerable donation of computers and stationery from students in the Republic of China, Taiwan. These computers will now be utilized to enhance education at schools around the Cayo District.
In delivering the laptops to recipients, H.E. Benjamin Ho, Taiwanese Ambassador to Belize, said that a Country without education has no hope.
“Information and Communication Technology ICT today is not a luxury, it should be a must for everyone…nobody should be denied of ICT,” said Ambassador Benjamin Ho.
Schools like the El Progresso Government School received eight laptops and one projector while Buena Vista Primary School received seven laptops.
Newly equipped with their laptops, both teachers and primary school children will now be able to link with anyone around the World.
No Safe Place
Several recent news stories underscore the dangers that confront women and girls worldwide. In Afghanistan seven men have been sentenced to death after being found guilty of gang raping four women returning from a wedding with their families. The women were first separated from their husbands and then robbed and raped. The only unusual feature of this story is that the men were actually charged for a crime that too often goes unreported and unpunished because women have a legitimate fear that if the crime is reported it is the women who will be charged and punished for adultery. The reason why justice was meted out so swiftly in this case was probably because the husbands felt disrespected by the actions of the perpetrators.A UN agency reported that African Union Peace Keeping Forces stationed in Somalia were routinely raping and sexually assaulting women and girls at their camps with the knowledge of those in authority. Similar reports concerning the soldiers of Peace Keeping forces in other countries are all too frequent. Although some of the sexual activity is probably commercial, the volume and age of the females suggests that a high percentage is coerced.
Toledo woman accused of drug trafficking
A woman from San Pedro Columbia village, Toledo was busted with just over two pounds of marijuana in her bag on Wednesday morning. According to police reports, officers intercepted and boarded a James Bus in Big Falls village and conducted a search on 26 year old Ana […]
Sisters charged for ATM card theft
A court prosecutor is out $910 because the persons who found his lost automatic teller machine (ATM) card refused to return it, despite his warnings, and dishonestly obtained money using it. 20 year old receptionist Chelsea Martinez, who works at the Blake Building on Pickstock Street, and her […]
Police outline targeted response to crime spike
After a deadly night in Belize City which reportedly forced the Karl Heusner Memorial Hospital (KHMH) to implement its mass casualty plan, the senior officials of the Police Department and Prime Minister Dean Barrow called a briefing this afternoon at the Racoon Street Police Station. Wednesday’s killings were […]
Major drug bust reported in Orange Walk
Police in Orange Walk have arrested a man from Ranchito Corozal following the discovery of a large quantity of cocaine. 36 year old Axel Fuentes was driving a Toyota pickup truck when it drove up at a police checkpoint around 8:30 pm on Wednesday between miles 56 […]
Shooting incidents kill 2, leave 5 others injured
Seven persons were victims of three separate shooting incidents in Belize City last night. Two of the victims died. In the first incident, 25 year old Clifford Flores was shot multiple times as he and a friend sat on a vehicle on Caesar Ridge Road. Police say […]
Tubing down the Macal River: Belize Floating Paradise
Anyone familiar with Chaa Creek’s history would know how important the Macal River was in those heady days before there was road access into Mick and Lucy’s family farm. One of the young couple’s first major purchases was a hand carved dugout canoe, locally known as a dory, which joined the small flotilla of farmers and neighbours making their way with produce into San Ignacio town every Saturday market Day.
Yes, the Macal was indeed the lifeblood of the area and essential to living in what was a beautifully remote farm back in the day before cars, telephones, electricity and many 20th century comforts made their way in. Supplies, communications and visitors usually came by way of the river, and a last-minute night time dory ride made it possible for the Fleming’s first child to be born in the relative comfort and safety of town.
We’ve seen every form of waterborne transport imaginable, from dories, canoes, skiffs and rafts of all kinds plying the Macal, and one of the more recent additions has become one of our favourites:
Humble inner tube, take a bow!
Tubes and the Macal seem like a match made in heaven. Gently making its way through the lush rainforest to San Ignacio Town before joining up with the Mopan to continue to the Caribbean Sea as the Old Belize River, the tranquil Macal is as inviting as they come. Wide enough but not too wide to easily swim across, usually serene and always lined with plenty of places to pull over and have a swim, snack or picnic, and with a colourful variety of birds, iguanas, monkeys and other forest dwellers in attendance, the Macal elevated tubing to new heights.
“Abracadabra” in San Pedro, Ambergris Caye, Belize.
Some of you (OK none of you -but allow me a little bit of ego) may have been wondering why I haven’t put out an edition lately. Quite simple really, there’s not been much that I’ve felt inclined to sit down and write about.
There’s only so many times (me? I want it to go on forever!) you want to know that I got up early, made a mug of black coffee, grabbed the iPad and headed out to the veranda (the western, lagoon facing one) to enjoy “me time”.
So what’s forced me out of this period of blogging inactivity. A force of nature that’s what.
Yesterday morning I was sitting out on the veranda – probably been there a couple of hours or two mugs of coffee – when my reverie was broken by shouts from Rose telling me to get a machete and the key for the front gate and get down to the Garage on the ground quickly, very quickly. “Why” I called out. “There’s a snake there” she shrieked back. Obvious terror in her voice.
Staying at the El Rey Hotel: The Best Hotel in Belmopan, Belize
While travelling in Belize we decided to spend a couple of nights in Belmopan. Belmopan is the capital city of Belize and often sadly acts as merely a stop over for some. However we wanted to check this place out so we found the El Rey Hotel online and booked in for a couple of nights. It’s now my job to convince you to also spend a few nights in Belmopan – you will love it. It’s a relaxed, calm and peaceful city and best of all you can escape the tourists and explore what is the third smallest capital city in the world.
While some travellers head to San Ignacio and base themselves there, that is just a tad too common, so Belmopan was the place for us. From my base in the El Rey Hotel in Belmopan, I was able to tour not only the city itself, but two separate day trips – one out to Actun Tunichil Muknal caves and another to Spanish Lookout and Xunantunich. I’ll cover those separately.
Friday’s Featured Food: WDs Ice Cream, Spanish Lookout, Belize
I really didn’t expect to be featuring a load of cool Belizean treats cuisine wise on my Friday’s Featured Food section, but then again if you’ve followed my journeys, you’ll remember I once worked as an ice cream seller in Bournemouth.
Even before that I was always a fan of ice cream, and while Tequila Ice Cream in Mexico and Facebook Ice Cream in Armenia went down a treat, Belize whipped up a super special ice cream.
We headed to remote countryside to try it and ended up in a village, or rather a collection of farms that form a large area known as “Spanish Lookout”. The most peculiar thong about the village of Spanish Lookout is that it’s not really a village, it’s not really Spanish and while it has views, it’s also not really a lookout!
Backpacking in Belize: Cave Tour of Actun Tunichil Muknal
When you hear about backpackers heading to Belize you think about beaches, sun and snorkelling. And yes all that stuff is cool and it really happens. I did it all too! But it was my plan in Belize to witness a load of other impressive things in the country not just for myself but also to show other travellers to Belize how diverse a country this is. For me, this included a few days in Belmopan, the capital, as well as Xunantunich, Placencia and a trip to Actun Tunichil Muknal. Thanks to my friend and DSL follower Ray for some extra cool tip offs for Belize (and a few photos which I’ll explain later), not all of which I found time for, but Actun Tunichil Muknal I did.
What is Actun Tunichil Muknal?
It’s an archaelogical reserve in deep Belizean countryside. As well as a nature trail, forests and rivers ATM (not a cash point) is most famous for its incredible caves, which was the pull for me. I had been to a fair few caves before (like Jenolan Caves in Australia , the Tiger Caves in Israel and Batu Caves in Malaysia) but this was a full on swimming experience in the caves!
We were going to be swimming in the caves!
Leaving Wildtracks...thoughts on leaving from Molly
For many people, leaving Wildtracks at the end of their stay is filled with emotions. Having to leave the animals you've cared for and the friends you've made after immersing yourself in the Wildtracks lifestyle, even for a month, is extremely hard for many. I have been lucky enough to avoid leaving and saying goodbye to everything twice by extending my placement. Now on my third attempt at a departure date I'm finally sitting at the Belize airport.
Leaving doesn't seem real at all. Even though I've gone through security and checked my bags, in my mind I am still going to be falling asleep at the Wildtracks supper table tonight. I have been lucky enough to stay and volunteer at Wildtracks for over eight months now and I can 100% say I am not the same person the walked on this tarmac in January.
Volunteering at Wildtracks is the chance of a lifetime, I know of nowhere else where I could get the kind of experiences I have had here. During my eight months here I have had the opportunity to work with the pre-release howler monkeys and see four of them released into the wild, I was able to see new cages built (including most of the new Spider Monkey Complex) and old ones torn down, I saw 17 new monkeys rescued as well as 2 manatee calves - and best of all, I was able to watch as those 19 new animals improved, becoming stabilized, healthy animals that are now being prepared for their release into the wild.
Belize consulate seeks to identify Belizean-born attorneys, dentists and physicians in Diaspora
The consulate of Belize in Los Angeles has sent out an alert asking members of the Belizean Diaspora to assist in identifying Belizean-born medical doctors, dentists and practicing attorneys. It is the intent to present certificates of appreciation to the professionals when the Belizean community in Los Angeles gathers to celebrate the victory at the 216th anniversary of the Battle of St George’s Caye and the 33rd anniversary of Belize’s independence on Friday in Los Angeles.
“Identifying physicians, dentists and attorneys will enable the consulate to bring another segment of its population into the Belize Diaspora Registry,” commented consul general Roland Yorke, emphasizing that those being honoured can reside anywhere in the United States.
Belize Consulate to Honor Belizean-Born Medical and Legal Professionals in Los Angeles
The consulate of Belize in Los Angeles has sent out an alert asking members of the Belizean Diaspora to assist in identifying Belizean-born medical doctors, dentists and practicing attorneys.
It is the intent to present certificates of appreciation to the professionals when the Belizean community in Los Angeles gathers to celebrate the victory at the 216th anniversary of the Battle of St George’s Caye and the 33rd anniversary of Belize’s independence Friday in Los Angeles.
“Identifying physicians, dentists and attorneys will enable the consulate to bring another segment of its population into the Belize Diaspora Registry,” commented consul general Roland Yorke, emphasizing that those being honored can reside anywhere in the United States.
Even though the consulate would appreciate their presence, they can designate someone to accept their certificate of recognition.
Desert-Dwelling Entomologists Visit the Rainforest in Belize
The chance to explore the vast biodiversity of a tropical rainforest is a rare opportunity for New Mexico State University students in the desert Southwest. This spring, the much anticipated Tropical Insect Ecology course, taught by Professor Scott Bundy, became available for a select group of students. A 10-day trip to the beautiful country of Belize can be an enriching opportunity for anyone, but for a group of like-minded students bent on scoping out arthropods in various tropical habitats, the excursion was also like experiencing an endless menagerie of the six-to-eight-legged variety. Southern New Mexico has an array of insects and arthropods — especially those adapted to extreme heat and little water — but Belize’s biodiversity of insects was astounding. Not only were the numbers of insects and arthropods bountiful, many were massive!
On our first night in the Cayo district, we set up light traps and were quickly bombarded by all manner of flying insects, small and large. Alien-looking praying mantises and scarab beetles were a welcome sight. Hundreds of moving, glittering flecks of light in the grass were actually the predatory eyes of wolf spiders and their kin that prowled along the forest floor. We soon realized we were in the very midst of their domain. Our legs were pockmarked with mosquito bites, but after that first night we were filled with excited anticipation of what the next day might bring. There was still so much to be seen!
Belize’s Hamanasi Adventure and Dive Resort Wins CTO/TravelMole Award For Sustainable Accommodation
The award is presented to “a destination or tourism-related company in recognition of excellence in planning and managing a diversified tourism product using sustainable tourism concepts and core values,” according to the CTO.
The award is presented jointly by the Caribbean Tourism Organization and TravelMole, the United Kingdom’s leading travel and tourism industry community.
“We started these awards to give our partners endorsements they can share with potential visitors so they can garner more business,” said Gail Henry, the CTO’s sustainable tourism product specialist. ”
there are persons keen on keeping their carbon footprint at a minimum during travel and through our award designations these properties and attractions can be easily identified.”
We Can Save the Caribbean’s Coral Reefs
PARROTFISH eat algae and seaweed. These brightly colored fish with beaklike mouths inhabit coral reefs, the wellsprings of ocean life. Without them and other herbivores, algae and seaweed would overgrow the reefs, suppress coral growth and threaten the incredible array of life that depends on these reefs for shelter and food.
This was happening in Bermuda, until the government in 1990 banned fish traps that were decimating the parrotfish population. Today, Bermuda’s coral reefs are relatively healthy, a bright spot in the wider Caribbean, where total coral cover has declined by half since 1970.
Last month, in a reminder of just how dire the situation facing the world’s coral reefs is, the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration said it was listing 20 species of coral as threatened under the Endangered Species Act, including all of what were once the most abundant Caribbean corals. The action focused primarily on the projected impacts of global warming and ocean acidification. Carbon dioxide emissions are increasing ocean temperatures and making them more acidic — and less hospitable for corals.
World Land Trust ups the ante to protect big cats
As part of its ongoing work to protect big cats, World Land Trust (WLT) is urgently raising money to protect large areas of habitat for species such as tiger, puma, and jaguar.
WLT’s Big Cat Big Match will take place during the first two weeks of October. During this time, any donations made to the charity’s Big Cat Appeal will be matched pound for pound. So far £250,000 has already been pledged for the match funding pot.
Funds that will be raised during the Big Cat Big Match will be used to enable WLT’s worldwide partners to extend existing reserves, and create important new wildlife corridors to connect fragmented protected areas. The funds will also support WLT’s Keepers of the Wild Programme, which supports the employment of wildlife rangers in the reserves.
WLT Chief Executive John Burton commented: “After 25 years of conservation success in countries as diverse as Belize, Paraguay and India, we know that WLT’s model of land purchase and protection is making it possible for big cats to survive in the wild in Latin America and Asia. We aim to raise £500,000 during Big Cat Big Match so that we can continue to support big cat conservation in countries where we already have programmes and in other parts of the world such as Iran and Vietnam, where we are developing exciting new partnerships.”
The Queen’s Young Leaders Programme
The Queen’s Young Leaders Programme is searching for inspirational young people across the Commonwealth who are making a difference in their communities.Exceptional people aged 18-29 will receive awards for leading the way where they live, in honour of Her Majesty The Queen’s 60-year contribution to the Commonwealth. We’ll support them to do more life-changing work.
Grants will be made to organisations in selected Commonwealth countries that can show they are improving the lives of young people. The grants will help individuals gain new skills, employment and a voice in their communities.
Video: Maya Island Air Tour of the Belize City Bay, 1min.
Video taken on board Maya Island Air of the Belize City Bay Tour experience. Contact us at 501-223-1140 or email [email protected] and book your tour today!
Video: Snorkeling Belize, 1min.
Hol Chan Reserve and Shark Alley.
Video: CCCCC's Joseph McGann on 5C's investments in adaptaton to Climate Change Belize, 2min.
Video: Belize, Where's the Beach? Sept 2014, 21min.
I am not the normal tourist, I spend all my time with the locals doing what the locals do. I see stuff most don't, many times the locals don't get out to see and there is a reason.
Video: Who Da Belize?, 5min.
Belizeans come in all shapes and sizes...
Video: Belize second half, 14min.
My first diving with a sea turtle! Turtle @ 11:30.
Video: Belize 2014, min.
San Benito Poite and San Jose, Vacation Bible School ~ July 2014.