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Today's Belize News: February 27, 2015 #501603
02/27/15 07:30 AM
02/27/15 07:30 AM
Joined: Oct 1999
Posts: 71,887
oregon, spr
Marty Offline OP

Marty  Offline OP


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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

“Sick” Air Traffic Controllers Shut Down PGIA
History took place on Saturday, February 21st when the Philip S.W. Goldson International Airport (PGIA) was closed to air traffic after Air Traffic Controllers (ATC) scheduled to work called in sick. The lack of ATC staff caused much chaos across the country, as no plane could land or take off from PGIA. National airports with scheduled flights to PGIA saw masses of distressed and confused customers who were unable to get to the international airport for their connecting flights. The Belize Civil Aviation Authority reported that the shutdown of PGIA caused two international flight to be diverted to San Pedro Sula, Honduras, but that by 11AM, operations were back to normal. The problem was first noticed when a scheduled Tropic Air flight from Punta Gorda Town to PGIA was diverted to the Municipal Airstrip because there was no response from the tower. The question was “why would six staff members scheduled to man the control tower from 6AM to midday call in sick?” The answer is apparently ‘low wages, long working hours, and political appointment’. Due to the fact that ATC are categorized by law as an essential service, they cannot participate in a strike, so they called in sick as a form of demonstration. The situation came as a surprise to the Civil Aviation Authority, and as such they were caught unprepared. “On Saturday, February 21st at 6:10AM, the Ministry of Tourism, Culture and Civil Aviation, and its Department of Civil Aviation were informed that the air traffic controllers scheduled to work the 6AM to 12PM shift at the Control Tower of the Philip Goldson International Airport had reported in sick. Subsequently, the Department of Civil Aviation has also received indication that some of the air traffic controllers scheduled to work the 12PM to 6PM shift had also reported in sick,” stated Director of Civil Aviation, Lindsay Garbutt in a press release.

No leads on the murder of Sylvin Chi and Benjamin Molina
Initial investigations from the police revealed that on the same date, at around 11:30PM, 51-year-old Jose Wagner reported that two of his coworkers (Chi and Molina) had gone missing since Tuesday, February 17th at 5AM. Wagner indicated that the men had left to go find coconuts and had not returned since. Officer in Charge of the San Pedro Police, Superintendent Luis Castellanos stated that as a result a search was launched in the area where the men were last seen. “When the police visited the area, 11.5 miles north of the island, they found what appeared to be blood. As a result, the officers concentrated their search in that area which led to the discovery of the grave 50 yards from the beach side. When the grave was dug up, police found the bodies of the two men that had been reported missing,” said Castellanos. One of Molina’s relatives, Ernildo Jones who took him in and was caring for him as a father, stated that police are not doing their best to catch the criminals. “He had told me that he wanted to go find coconut oil. I gave him $150 and he went up north to get the oil from Chi, who works with him. We didn’t want him to go because we loved him, but he still went on Sunday, February 15th and this is what happened. From the state that his body was found, I believe that my son was tortured. I feel that the police are not doing their job. We have given them information on what we are hearing on the murder, yet they do nothing. I believe that there is some money involved in this. I talked to the police and they say that they can’t do nothing because there isn’t any proof,” said Jones.

New Horizon SDA benefactor symbolically hands over donation
The New Horizon Seventh Day Adventist Primary School is boasting a fresh look with two brand new classrooms and a palapa, amongst other donations. A symbolic handing over took place on Thursday February 19th when the school’s largest benefactor Dan Listwin of Canary Coves and Mayor Daniel Guerrero stopped in for a short visit. The donation includes two wooden classroom buildings, the construction of a new zinc roof palapa fitted with eight picnic tables and the renovation of the outer part of the all classroom buildings including the reconstruction of verandahs. In addition, the school got a fresh coat of paint to fit in with the new renovations made to the school’s facility.

Monumental expansion of Hol Chan Marine Reserve is official

Ambergris Today

Ovidio and Elia Guerrero Celebrate Golden Anniversary
The local celebrities of the day are Ovidio “Pinocho” Guerrero and Elia Guerrero who celebrated on Tuesday, February 23, 2015 their 50th or Golden Wedding Anniversary. A large nucleus family which include Orlando Guerrero, Ofel Guerrero, Dimas Guerrero, Omar “Kanasi” Guerrero, and sisters Ofelia Graniel and Omelia Marin were at hand at the couple’s residence to celebrate the special occasion. Also at hand were his children, Martha Perez, Anel Rivero, and Luis Guerrero along with the couple’s grand children and great grandchildren. Friends took time to write and talk about their fond memories of the couple and had fun recollecting Ovidio as a talented skin diver/fisherman, an avid basketball forward, a keen baseball pitcher, a talented musician, a man of service as a Lion Club member, and yes a village councilman who was part of the team that brought township to San Pedro. As for Elia Aguilar, everyone agreed that she was the eye of the village when she entered the dance hall being the first in the hall and the last to leave. Together this couple has contributed to San Pedro by offering the very first self-service shop and store known as Martha’s Store, a first class bar establishment the Skin Diver’s Club, and also Martha’s Hotel.

Maya Artifacts Stolen in San Pedro House of Culture Breakin
The newly inaugurated San Pedro House of Culture has been the target of thieves over the weekend. The thieves made away with an assortment of valuable artifacts. According to the police, a long list of items were stolen that include two conch shell rings, three stone axes, one ink pot, a rare jade ear flare, three net weights, two arrow heads, a loom weight and a conch shell spoon. Guillermo Paz, manager of the House of Culture, says that he secured the facility on Friday, February 20, 2015, and returned on Sunday, February 22, to find that the front door had been forced open and the items were missing. Police are investigating and residents are urged to contact the San Pedro Police Department if they know of any illegal sales of these stolen items/Maya artifacts.

San Pedro Boasts Expansion of Hol Chan Marine Reserve
In 2010, a community initiative spearheaded by the San Pedro Tour Guides Association, The Ambergris Caye Citizens for Sustainable Development and The Hol Chan Marine Reserve (HCMR) commenced work in establishing Mexico Rocks, the fly fishing shoals on the leeward side of Ambergris Caye and its associated wetlands as a protected area. After several public consultations it was agreed that the proposed area be added as an extension of the HCMR. Through an integrated approach and with full participation of government and stakeholders, a final draft was agreed on early February 2015. On Tuesday, February 17, The Government of Belize, through cabinet, approved the expansion of the Hol Chan Marine Reserve. On Wednesday, February 25, an official signing ceremony took place in San Pedro Town, Ambergris Caye, Belize.

Misc Belizean Sourcesmzz

The Real Story Behind Harmonyville
A collection of videos and other information

International Living Belize comments on the current Electoral process in Belize!
This is a local election year in Belize and bright, vibrant signs have been hung along the streets throughout the towns, for each party. We've been watching "Good Morning San Pedro" most mornings, to hear each party give their pitch. Belizeans take their democracy very seriously. A high % of them vote. It's a pleasure to watch this young democracy in action. It really makes a difference when you learn about your adopted country's local and national politics...

Public Health Notice: Measles Advisory
The Ministry of Health has been advised by the World Health Organization (WHO) and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) of an outbreak of Measles at the Disneyland Resort in California in the United States of America (USA). In addition, cases are being reported in Canada and one case related to the Disneyland outbreak has been reported in Mexico.

Belizean Chocolate
Maya Mountain Cacao Newsletter, February 2015

Cayo Sinkholes by Horse
Did you know you can ride horses from Bullet Tree Falls to the giant sinkholes behind Santa Familia? One of the sinkholes is huge. Definitely worth the trip. The sinkholes are catching on. Kenny Lamb has an album of pictures from the trek there.

A Better Man Album Launch
Deniss Gee is having his CD release party and concert for his album 'A Better Man' this Saturday in Roaring Creek. "This coming Saturday, February 28th, Alida Sharp will be one of the artist before at Dennis Requena album launch in Roaring Creek. Encourage all to come out and show your support."

Contact a field representative in your area for transportation information: Celeshia Guy for Belize District 607-4405, Judy Waight for Corozal District - 660-0723, BTIA Jazmin Zetina for Orange Walk District - 651-4860, Julie Sanchez for Cayo District - 623-7301, Rubiere Ramirez for Stann Creek District 636-4621 and Cordelia Shal for the Toledo District - 605-0999 or call Amelita Knowles at 610-4874 or 822-2792. For Placencia Village contact Arreini Palacio at SEA 523-3377 and Independence Village Maggie Muschamp 670-1246

Neotropical River Otter
Did you know that the Neotropical River Otter does not only eat fish? Here it digs into rotting wood for a tasty larva or even a frog if he is lucky.

Harvest Caye
Flying to PG today we got an exclusive look at the real devastation at Harvest Caye. This can not be seen from the ground... suddenly the true horror is revealed. 10 new photos have been posted to my album, but this sums it up.

BOLEDO DRAWING for Thursday, February 26, 2015: 61. FANTASY 5: 8 27 2 28 19 A

Ms. Teresa Lopez passes
Mayor Daniel Guerrero, the San Pedro Town Council and Staff would like to extend its deepest condolences to the Lopez and Caliz family on the passing of Ms. Teresa Lopez. May her soul rest in peace.

Corozal House of Culture (NICH)
Thank you to the Standard 6 teachers and students of St. Francis Xavier School for visiting and viewing the Belize Heroes, Patriots and Benefactor's Exhibit today!

New Mexican Ambassador in Belize Press Conference
The New Mexican Ambassador in Belize Carlos Quesnel Meléndez, offered his first press conference. Took place at the Institute of Mexico in the city Belize with the assistance of journalists eight of the most important means of the country, both printed as radio and television. In the context of a breakfast of work, ambassador offered a scenic of the Bilateral relations between Mexico and BELIZE, wish to highlight the issues of economic, Commercial, Tourist and technical cooperation and science.

Chiquibul from Below
The Maya Mountain Adventure Challenge is happening again in 2016, and they went scouting all through MPR and the Chiquibul to figure out the route. They captured some incredible pictures from the area. "NoHoch Chen sink hole is tucked away in the secrets of the Chiquibul Forest. Want to know where? Join us for the 2016 MMAC! Registration is now open!"

Calling all the sound technicians or lovers of the art of audio productions
Are you interested or do you know someone who would be interested in learning something really cool? Here is an opportunity you cannot miss! Please share with all who might be interested!

Protecting artifacts
Key stakeholders learning how to care for important Belizean artifacts in order to protect and preserve them for future generations...

Belize Heroes, Patriots and Benefactors Exhibit Ceremony
This year's exhibit featured the addition of Ms. Vivian Seay, Ms. Dorothy Bradly and Corozal's very own Mr. Jesus Ken. So far 21 persons have been featured including Belize's two National Heroes, Benefactor and several patriots and unsung heroes. The exhibit is being hosted at the Corozal House of Culture until June.

Channel 7

21 Year Old Ian Adolphus Jr Dies
Last night police spoke about how they had been holding crime down in the city - after a month with no homicides in the murder capital. Well, they spoke too soon. Tonight, sadly, the news is about two men killed in separate shootings within 30 hours. First, yesterday's shooting victim, 21 year old Ian Adolphus Jr died early this morning. That's murder number one. And then this afternoon at 2:15 pm, 29 year old Hubert Bodden was shot dead on Cedar Street behind Habet and Habet. We start with Adolphus. He was shot yesterday morning at 9:30 am on Freedom Street and died at the KHMH this morning at 4:30. The 21 year old was shot to the arm, chest and elbow. His father tells us that the shot to the chest was the fatal injury because it caused major internal bleeding and also damaged his heart. He said that after surgery Adolphus was listed as 50/50, and later in the night Doctors lowered his chances. He was then taken off life support.

Two Murders In 30 Hours
And then this afternoon at 2:15 pm, 29 year old Hubert Bodden was shot dead on Cedar Street behind Habet and Habet. He was in the area taking money for his young son - and he was reportedly caught by a bullet intended for another man who was fleeing. 7News was on the scene, and later we spoke to his stepfather. Dennis Bodden - Stepfather of Herbert Bodden "I feel sad, because he was a respectable person and he is a kind person and we usually get along with each other, with the family. It really hurt when I got the message this morning. I didn't expect this to happen to him. He is not a piece of cloth and I don't feel like it is right. I don't think that will end like this, because he was too kind. He was just at the wrong spot and it hurts me. Anywhere he goes, he is well-known. You would always meet him pushing his cart."

Hope for Harmonyville
In May of last year, the dispute between the Lands Department and the grassroots organization, BGYEA, first emerged in the press over the Harmonyville community housing project. You probably remember that the Lands Department ordered that certain tracts of land set aside for Harmonyville has to be left aside for road reserve. But, BGYEA members and their supporters believed that the government was being unreasonable because the amount of land that the Lands Department wanted to leave untouched was significantly larger than in other communities. Secondly, they wanted to plant corn in this buffer area, and the proceeds would be used to construct proper roads and other infrastructure for the community. The Government refused to approve it, and when the grassroots organization agitated to move forward with its plans, Government got an injunction to stop them.

Election May Cause Two Day Holiday In Some Areas
Next week Wednesday, March 4 is the date of the 2015 Municipal Elections, something which the mass parties, their candidates, and the independent candidates know only too well. But while that day is not a public and bank holiday, the Ministry of Education has decided that there will be no classes country wide. Parents who have children going to schools which will be used as counting stations will have to monitor the progress of the elections in their town or city closely because if there some dispute over the results, and there is some form of a recount required, or if the counting takes extra time, classes for Thursday March fifth may also be called off. Today, the Ministry of Education's Education Information Officer discussed with what will happen on Wednesday and possibly Thursday at the different schools: Yma Casey Gordon - Education Information Officer, MOE "We have through the chief education officers, sent out a memo a while back, to general managers and to principals, identifying March 4th as a non-school day. We've also inserted in that memo, the possibility of having a non-school day on March 5th and of course this is to accommodate certain circumstances if the needs be when we look at our school who will be used as counting stations as well as polling stations."

The Tale Of The Tablet
We caught up with Yma Casey Gordon at the UB Gynmasium in Belmopan while the Ministry of Education was continuing the distribution of the ASUS computer Tablets. As we've reported, the giveaway to the tertiary students started on Tuesday - but since then we've seen at least one for sale online. We asked Casey about this and the question of whether the tablets should have been distributed strictly on a needs basis: Yma Casey Gordon - Education Information Officer, MOE "We had a total of about 1200 students and this is at the UB Belmopan Campus. Up to date we are on our second day. We have one more day left and we have about 400 tablets left to distribute." Daniel Ortiz "Ma'am, some have made issue of the fact that there are some students who qualify who don't particularly need the tablet. Was there any sort of screening done or is there any sort of policy on that, because you don't need the tablet, means you don't necessarily received it from the Ministry of Education?"

Hol Chan Marine Reserve, Now 6x Bigger
It's already one of the most famous marine reserves on earth and tonight, Hol Chan is even better than that because it's gotten 6 times bigger. Last week, Cabinet approved an expansion to include a 40 acre plot of lagoon and wetlands - called Sunset Cove. It was designated as Zone F of the reserve some time ago, but in September reports emerged that it was being surveyed for house lots. That raised howls of protest - and the good news is that it worked - and yesterday a ceremony was held to celebrate the accomplishment. We found out more from the park manager: Miguel Alamilla, Hol Chan Marine Reserve "Hol Chan Marine Reserve has a total coverage currently on 56sqkm. This expansion will greatly add to what it is Hol Chan right now. I think it's over 330sqkm of additional mangrove, sea grass beds and coral reef that we are adding to the Hol Chan Marine Reserve. So, in all we are multiplying what we have by more than 6 times."

The Shame Of Shafane
19 year old Ernest Leslie, today walked from a charge of grievous harm after he was accused of breaking the jaw of a female 18 year old Excelsior student, Shafane Flowers. How did it happen? Well, the alleged victim, Shafane Flowers did not show up at court today for her own trial which forced the court to withdraw the very serious charge against Ernest Leslie. When Leslie got the news, he was at court alone and unrepresented and wasted no time in dashing out of the court.

FFB: The New Face Of Football
Viewers may remember vividly how the country's National A Football Team, the Jaguars, qualified for the Gold Cup in 2013. It was a first for Belize, and a triumph for the Ruperto Victente Administration of the Football Federation of Belize which was determined to show that they were managing football properly. Since then, poor performances have killed the hype, and the hope in the Vicente administration has also ebbed. It hit rock bottom when the team came in last in the 2014 UNCAF Copa Centroamericana - or Nations Cup. Well, the FFB is determined to get it right for the first round of the 2018 FIFA World Cup Qualifiers. Belize plays against the Cayman Islands on March 25, and this new National Team Selection has been practicing as a team since November of last year. The full National Team has since been selected, and according to the FFB, it is a younger, more cohesive selection which will allow football at this level to develop. The Federation invited the media today for a meet and greet session with the new team, and 7News was there. We saw quite a number of new faces, but also some familiar ones. Here's what they had to tell us today.

A Change Of Mood and Mind For National Team Coaches
And the man who will is leading the team as Head coach is Jorge Nunez, a native of Brazil who has been around Belizean football as a coach for over 25 years. He's has coached some of the biggest names in football, and today, he told us why he wants your support to lead the Jaguars into these World Cup qualifiers: Jorge Nunez - Head Coach, National Team "I played football with Juventus. I play football in Central America, I play football in my country, Brazil, professional. I have had training, I have received my certification from FIFA and I did my training in Guatemala, so I am certified to coach in any part of the world." And as you may have noticed from our footage, Charlie Slusher is back at the FFB as the Assistant Head Coach of the National Team. Now, the last time we spoke with Slusher, which was about 2 years ago, it appeared that he and President Ruperto Vicente had major differenced of opinion about what's best for the National Team. Slusher exited on less than amiable terms, and so today, we asked both men how they were able to mend fences. Here's what they had to say:

A Field of Dreams, Deferred
And the first match that the Jaguars will play for the FIFA World Cup Qualifiers will be a home game against the Cayman Island National Team. They will play that match at the FFB Stadium. Now, you may remember well the controversy which arose when the FFB promised last year that the football Pitch would be ready for the 2014 Champions League. It was a big fail for the Administration because in the very last days coming up to the match, Belize, which would have been represented by the Belmopan Bandits was yanked from the competition because the field wasn't ready. Well, the FFB has had months to make sure that the pitch is up to international standards. So, we asked about it today, and the President said that it has passed inspection with flying colors:

Civil Aviation Minister Iffy on Penalties For Air Traffic Controllers
Yesterday in San Pedro, Minister with responsibility for civil aviation Manuel Junior Heredia addressed the issue of the air controllers sick out on Saturday. It shut down the airport's operations for five hours - and raised many public questions about the state of the equipment in the air control tower. Heredia today told the media that no one complained to him - but he does have his own complaints:.. Hon. Manuel Junior Heredia "These people should not have acted n that way. Probably they didn't get good advice, but we are hoping that this will not be repeated in the future and we are also working in additional support, which at this point I cannot reveal, when it happens you will know, but definitely from our own government department's we are looking into training other people. I have been very open. When I met with them before the Christmas holidays, I was very open, look, if you are not happy with what is happening over there and people are not listening to you, there is the minister who will entertain from the guy that sweep the area to the highest officer. There is no special for anyone. That is the way I have operated and that is the way I will continue to do so, but at the end of the day, if you do your investigation and you find out that there is mischief, then you have to deal with the issue. You cannot allow anyone..."

Be Your Own Boss!
Be your own Boss! That is the motto of the new Youth Apprenticeship's entrepreneurship program. A ceremony was held at the Youth for the Future building this afternoon to honor the 16 participants who will be benefiting from this program. Una May Gordon, the founder of the Institute of sustainable livelihood leadership and Exchange, told us that this program gives youth a chance to reinvent themselves. This program which covers a year, is being sponsored by Australian Aid. The series of workshops and training for participants should start in March.

The Inevitability of Aging
We're all gonna get old, but despite its inevitability, aging is not a topic freely discussed. And while we'd rather not talk about it, but the national council on ageing say that it is a timely and relevant discussion. They held a conference today at the Radisson under the theme "Policy Dialogue: Toward an effective Continuum of Care for Older Persons". The dialogue centered on how to improve services for older persons in order for them to live healthy and dignified lives. Judith Alpuche, CEO of the Human Development sector further discussed how this will impact the quality of life for older persons. The National Policy focuses on persons ages 60 and older.

The Central Corridor's Comeback
The last time the Central Belize Corridor - also known as the jaguar corridor - made the news was in 2012 when the company Green Tropics raised an environmental red flag when they dug a 2 mile canal through it. But, this corridor extends 750 kilometres - or approximately 466 miles - of the country, and a part of the Mesoamerican Biological Corridor, and this protected area is vital to the wildlife which calls it home. But among those 466 miles, there are private land owners, and different communities which make up parts of it, so the conservationists are trying to make sure that the human interaction with the corridor is beneficial, instead of the deforestation and shrinking of the wildlife habitat which happens whenever forests are cut down for agricultural or housing purposes. The constant threat to the corridor is something that the University of Belize's Environmental Research Institute knows very well, and so a very involved, very exhaustive consultation process in which 15-member task force was put together. This taskforce comprised of representatives from governmental agencies and non-governmental organizations, and their objective was to put together a corridor Action Plan.

Reef-Ready Kids
In December of last year, we told you about Grace Primary student Amber McKay. She won the art competition held by the Belize Coalition to Save our Natural Heritage. Well, yesterday it earned her and 34 of her fellow students a trip to the Hol Chan Marine Reserve in a glass bottom boat. The city students left for San Pedro early in the morning and for the kids, it was a real eye opener - in the most literal sense of the word!

Whale Shark Sightings Underway
And they would have had to open their eyes even wider if they were in southern waters where whale sharks usually pass through close to the middle of the year. But this year, they've been spotted as early as January in Belize. According to Director of Reef Conservation International in Sapodilla Caye, Polly Alford, this is not a rare occurrence - over the past 10 years she and her team have sighted them throughout the year. They spotted a whale shark last week and also saw one on New Year's Eve near Tom Owen's Caye and Sapodilla Caye. So if you are looking to snap a picture of one of the whale sharks you can spot them in those areas.

Channel 5

Princess Casino Wing Evacuated After Fire Scare
The 2015 Fire Season has just started and already two major hotels have caught fire. In Belize City, a major catastrophe was averted when a fire broke out on Wednesday [...]

Belize City Man Gunned Down
The city has been relatively peaceful for some time as police beef up their presence on the streets. But in less than twenty-four hours, two persons have been murdered in [...]

Shooting Victim Succumbs
We say two murders in less than twenty-four hours because Wednesday morning’s shooting victim, twenty-one year old Ian Adolphus Jr., succumbed to his injuries just before five a.m. today. Adolphus [...]

Government/BGYEA Reach Mediation Settlement
The Belize Grassroots Youth Empowerment Association had its day today, and it wasn’t even in court. The organization got one up on G.O.B. in the second mediation session to settle [...]

Harmonyville Plans To Proceed Soon
Matura-Shepherd says that the agreement will be taken to court and returned as a court order. She says that they expect implementation to go smoothly because they were very judicious [...]

F.F.B. Introduces National Team
With an ambitious calendar before them, the Football Federation of Belize today introduced the national ‘A’ selection team which, by next month, will be playing its first home game against [...]

F.F.B. Field Ready for Play
As we said earlier, the first international game for the national ‘A’ selection team will be played on March twenty-fifth at the FIFA sanctioned national field on the F.F.B. compound [...]

Slusher Back With the National Selection
The last time we heard from the Football Federation, there was an impasse between Assistant Coach, Charlie Slusher, and the Executive of the F.F.B.; Slusher was removed from the coaching [...]

World Cup Qualifier Set for March 25th
But football is an expensive sport. There is the cost for training of the players, salaries for the coaching staff and the players as well as the maintenance of the [...]

Still No Arrests in Murder of San Pedro Infant
In the wake of the gruesome murder of baby Daniel Espat in San Pedro on Tuesday morning, police have detained several individuals for questioning.  Initially, in the hours immediately following [...]

$30,000+ For Undersized Conch
It may very well be the largest fine to be imposed on a family for fisheries offenses, but this morning a father and his son along with the father’s three [...]

Ladyville Resident Charged for Flashing
A twenty-seven year old Ladyville resident was today before the court for twice exposing his person to a woman living in the Vista Del Mar area, but whose name is [...]

SIB Releases Latest Stats
The Consumer Price Index for January 2015 has been released, indicating that prices were down one point one percent last month.  That comparison is made against the same time period [...]

The Coalition Speaks on Reserve Expansion Signing
On Wednesday night we told you about the signing of the expansion at Hol Chan Marine Reserve, and while it is a win for conservationists, who have been pushing for [...]

Mexican Embassy Works to Improve Border Experience
Mexican Ambassador to Belize Carlos Quesnel is taking on a number of bilateral initiatives, some new and others in the pipeline. A priority area is in trade for which a [...]

Mexico Offers Anti-Crime Aid
And that partnership to strengthen the trade and investments in Belize is also being backed up with assistance to fight crime and narco-trafficking, two of the biggest challenges for the [...]

No School Day on March 4th
The Ministry of Education announced today that next week Wednesday will be a non-school day due to the March fourth elections in nine municipalities. There will be no classes for [...]

A Defining Moment in the Military Career of a Former B.D.F. Soldier
It made national headlines back in February 2000 when a twenty-five man Guatemalan patrol captured a four-man B.D.F. and police patrol and accused them of illegally crossing over into Guatemalan [...]

Healthy Living Looks at Teenage Pregnancy
Teenage pregnancy is not just a health concern for the nation; it is also a human rights issue.  Each and every child has the right to achieve their full potential [...]

Re: Today's Belize News: February 27, 2015 [Re: Marty] #501604
02/27/15 07:30 AM
02/27/15 07:30 AM
Joined: Oct 1999
Posts: 71,887
oregon, spr
Marty Offline OP

Marty  Offline OP


International Ice Cream Company Interested In Belize's Sugar
A potential buyer visited and toured the Sugar Industry in Belize today. We are talking about Ben & Jerry’s Homemade Holding Incorporated which trades as Ben & Jerry’s. The American company is based in Vermont, United States and operates internationally. The diary company is famous for their top shelf ice cream, which is not popular in Belize. Still, the company seems to have an interest in Belizean sugar, as the sweetener is an important component of their product. CEO Jostein Solheim is on vacation in Belize but has taken a day out to visit the industry. Jostein Solheim – CEO, Ben and Jerry’s Ice Cream “Sugar is a very important ingredient for us and we use a hundred percent Fair Trade sugar, including sugar from Belize.”

PUP Party Leader With Orange Walk PUP Team
With only 6 days to the much anticipated Municipal Elections, political parties are making their last minute rounds with the electorate and in Orange Walk Town it is no exception. Today the PUP slate was joined by Party Leader, Honorable Francis Fonseca as they visited with the people on their trails in the core of Town. Our newsteam capitalized on the opportunity and posed questions to the Party Leader as it pertains to education, the elections and machinery. According to Fonseca, the plan the People’s United Party is offering to its people in all municipalities compliments that of the quality of candidates that are running in the PUP slates.

MJC Students Receive Tablets From GOB
Today, over 280 students from the Muffles Junior College were recipients of ASUS brand tablets, an initiative of the Ministry of Education and the Government of Belize to bridge the gap between education and technology. And while the FREE GIFT may seem like a genuine offertory from the Government, much public debate surrounds the initiative since many students have forfeited the item and sold it to the highest bidder. We asked Party Leader Francis Fonseca for commentary on the initiative and while he is not opposed to the program he did infact set the record straight citing that the plan was not a “well thought out one” and a cheap political gimmick since the information collected by the Ministry has been passed on to the UDP Secretariat where they are now calling and emailing students to vote. Information he says that the students gave the Ministry in confidentiality, here is that clip…

Other Project Under SIF
On Tuesday we told you about the progress works in the rehabilitation project of the Central Park that is seeing its final stages of completion. As reported, the project is one in collaboration with the Government of Belize, the Social Investment Fund and the Orange Walk Town Council of which funding was provided from the World Bank in the form of a loan. And while the park project was a major one for SIF, on that day of the inspection, Project Coordinator Ernest Raymond filled us in on the other road works that they have been working on around Town. Maria Novelo – Reporter “Sir, any other projects you guys are working within town or surrounding villages in Orange Walk?” Ernest Raymond – Project Coordinator, SIF “We had under the BMDP we have rehabilitated San Ignacio Street, Avilez Lane, Tangerine Street, and then we now doing Santa Familia Street that is to be completed shortly.”

Fire At Old Sugar Factory
This afternoon Fire officials from Corozal Town responded to a fire at the old sugar factory in Libertad Village, Corozal District. The officials arrived at the scene around two in the afternoon. According to official reports, a worker at the premises was burning some dry bushes near an old, abandoned building and did not notice when the fire spread to a pile of dried lumber near the structure. The fire spread quickly and engulfed the entire structure. According to reports, the building was not in use and nothing of value was lost in the flames. Fire officials brought the fire under control shortly after arriving. The fire had also spread to nearby bushes and trees in the compound but did not destroy anything of value to the owners of the old sugar factory. The establishment is owned by Mexican Business persons and is overseen by Belizean employees.

BSI/ASR Have Commenced Works On Strategic Development Plan
It is only a little over a month since the 2014/2015 sugar crop commenced and so far the reviews have been positive. Today, in speaking with International Relations representative Mac McLachlan he reiterated that good news and even commended cane farmers for the quality of their cane which he describes as excellent. McLachlan added that the mill has also been performing well. The work being achieved, he says, is a good step in the right direction. As we have reported several times before, the season has for the first time seen changes within the industry as two new associations have signed contracts with the company forcing changes in the operations. McLachlan says the relationship with all stakeholders has been good and work on the strategic development plan has commenced.

One Person Sought For Murdering Patch Moreno
It has been over a year that the skeletal remains of the Luis “Patch” Moreno were found in a remote area on a farm off the Guinea Grass road. At the time, the forensic pathologist concluded that Patch was brutally beaten and stabbed before he was executed and his body dumped. But while it may seem like the case has gone cold, recently investigators pulled that file out since they have one person that is being sought for questioning. According to Superintendent Dennis Arnold, in due time the suspect will be interviewed in the hope that the case can be solved and an arrest made. “All of these investigations are on the back burner, we have certain people who we need to speak with but we have to speak to that person at the right time, we don’t want to move too quickly because we don’t know what next but we have our suspect and as soon as the time is right we will interview that person. We are not dragging our feet they say people who don’t understand the art of investigating would say that we are dragging our feet but we are not we got the information but we just need to take our time because we don’t want to make any slip up or make a mess of the whole investigation.”

Minor Traffic Accident on Liberty Avenue In O/W
Around two thirty this afternoon, a small traffic mishap was recorded on Liberty Avenue and according to authorities, speeding could have been the factor. According to eyewitnesses we spoke to off camera, this maroon taxi was coming out of the driveway of Calin’s Purified Water when this speeding maroon Wingle slammed into the driver’s side causing it to come to a halt on the avenue’s division bar. Authorities responded quickly and took statements from both drivers. The taxi driver sustained a small gash to the back of the head and the driver of the wingle seemed unharmed.


Woods Rebuts to Allegations on Street Works
Yesterday a group led by the People’s National Party in Toledo held a demonstration at the site of ongoing street works in that municipality. PNP Mayoral candidate Will Maheia told our correspondent Paul Mahung that while they appreciated the street upgrade it should be done properly. Maheia said they had spoken to a number of contractors who said it did not make any sense to build a street without putting steel in it. According to Maheia the street works is a temporary fix because when big trucks start running on it, the streets will break apart. Today Love News spoke with contractor Francis Cisco Woods who told us that contrary to Maheia’s comments, the streets are being built to last.

Adolphus Jr. Succumbs to Injuries
Meanwhile sometime after four o’clock this morning, 21-year-old Ian “Uno” Adolphus succumbed to his injuries while undergoing treatment at the Karl Heusner Memorial Hospital. Adolphus was shot yesterday morning at the corner of Louise Bevans and Freedom Streets in Belize City and received three gunshot wounds, one to the right elbow, one to the right shoulder and the other to the heart. He underwent surgery however as we mentioned, he passed away this morning. Love news spoke to his father, Ian Adolphus Sr. IAN ADOLPHUS SR. “He doesn’t give trouble he just plays ball and he lives here with his grandmother. He likes playing ball he was going to school and he just hangs out with the wrong set of people. He was hanging out with the guys he plays ball with I don’t know if those young men robbed him for his friends. He was working with those kids on the streets when the area reps give them jobs on the street. He didn’t need to be hanging out on the streets with anybody. I was with him all the time and he never told me that anyone was bothering him so like I tell you, I don’t know why that occurred.”

Belize City Man Succumbed to Gun Violence
Another Belize City man was gunned down today. Sometime around two o’clock this afternoon shots rang out on Cedar Street and when it was over 29-year-old Herbert Bodden laid on the ground fighting for his life. Bodden died while being rushed to the Karl Heusner Memorial Hospital. According to eyewitnesses, Bodden was in front of Kevin’s mechanic to purchase parts when he became a victim of gun violence. We were told approximately ten shots were heard, several of which hit Bodden to the chest. Eyewitnesses said the gun man escaped by running towards Vernon Street.

Military Summary Hearing Scheduled For Missing Ammunition
Just over a month ago, we brought you the story of over two thousand ammunition that had gone missing from the explosive and ammunition storage facility for the Belize Defense Force through Lords Bank Road in Ladyville Village, Belize District. It has been five weeks now and there have been no substantial leads in recovering the stolen ammunition, specifically, one thousand live rounds of 7.62 calibre ammunition and one thousand six hundred and forty live rounds of 5.56 ammunition. Tonight, what we can tell you, however, is that there are eleven men of the Belize Defense Force that will be facing the Brigadier General, Commander David Jones, in the next coming days in what is referred to as a military summary hearing.

Patrick JonesPJ

Civil Aviation Minister says air traffic controllers’ issues being addressed
The stand-off at the Philip Goldson International Airport between air traffic controllers and the Department of Civil Aviation appears to have simmered down. Air traffic controllers’ complaints about the management of their posts with relation to equipment, working conditions and personal and professional development for some time now […]

Expansion to Hol Chan Marine Reserve inaugurated
Hol Chan Marine Reserve is one of the most recognized marine protected areas in Belize. It has seen some growing pains in the past months after reports that part of it was being carved out for a housing development. But that was reversed and now the Reserve has […]

Statistical Institute reports lower prices, widening trade imbalance
The first statistics for 2015 by the Statistical Institute of Belize (SIB) were released this week. In the area of external trade, imports rose slightly and exports fell over the previous year. Belize imported $141 million worth of goods and exported just $28.9 million. There were no crude […]

Vector control information shared in Corozal villages
Members of the vector Control Unit in Corozal Town, today visited with residents of San Victor and San Narciso villages in the Corozal District. The purpose of the visit was the share information with residents on how to prevent mosquito-borne dengue fever in their communities. Accompanying the local Vector Control […]

Government and BGYEA reach agreement through mediation
This morning the government of Belize and the Belize Grassroots Youth Empowerment Association, headed by President Nigel Petillo, reached agreement by mediation on a majority of issues concerning their case in the Supreme Court. The government had sued to stop the implementation of a planned project in the […]

Man charged for exposing himself in public
A man from the Vista del Mar are of Ladyville village has been arrested and charged with two counts of exposing his person in public. This follows a report by a twenty three year old woman, who called the police on Wednesday morning to report that twenty seven year old […]

Shooting victim dies; case upgraded to murder investigation
A Wednesday morning shooting in Belize City has now turned into a murder investigation. 21 year old Ian Adolphus who was shot to the chest, shoulder and right elbow yesterday morning, died at 4:35 am today while undergoing treatment at the Karl Heusner Memorial Hospital. According to police, Adolphus was […]


A Few "Firsts" in San Pedro!
We have never received mail in San Pedro, let alone a “package”. The mail you get isn’t delivered to your home – it’s held at the post office. It’s up to you to make a stop there every couple of days to check on your parcel’s arrival. I had forgotten to pack a few items when we left the States, so I had them shipped and today was D-day! I walked into the post office and the clerk told me that my package had arrived. Woohoo! My stuff was finally here! However, it was lunch time so I had to come back after 1:00pm but before 3:00pm for retrieval. The anticipation was going to kill me! When I returned to pick up my package, the clerk told me to come behind the counter and have a seat in what looked like an interrogation room. Crap! I was nervous and I hadn’t even done anything wrong! Almost like that feeling growing up when your mom said “Get up to your room and wait until your Dad gets home!” The post master asked me if I had ever received parcels in San Pedro before and then proceeded to explain the process to me. Long story short, the package needed to be opened in front of both of us, inspected in comparison to the customs declaration form attached and handed over to the proper recipient- ME. He commented on the fact that these items could not be sold to anyone in Belize, they had to be for my own personal use and they had to leave with me when I returned to the U.S. Not a problem, sir! I forked over the $.75BZ retrieval fee and skipped out of the office.

Hol Chan Marine Reserve Massive Expansion Approved – Hopefully Highlighting the IMPORTANCE Of Our Greatest Gift & How Much More Work There is To Do
Yesterday there was an formal announcement and party for a pretty momentous occasion. Belize’s most visited tourist site – the Hol Chan Marine Reserve off of Ambergris Caye – was officially expanded by a SUBSTANTIAL amount and approved by the Government of Belize. Short speeches and presentations were given by a few different people. Billy Leslie was the MC, Ms. Beverly Wade of the Fisheries Department, Honorable Representative Manuel Heredia, Miguel Alamilla, the administrator of the Hol Chan Marine Reserve and Mayor Danny Guerrero. Here are some of the interesting facts that I picked up. With this move, Hol Chan has been expanded from 55 square kms (Zones A thru D above) to over 400 sq. kms. The well-known Mexico Rocks area, designated H above, is now a NO-TAKE area. With no fishing of any kind and monitored by daily rangers.

International Sourcesizz

Question Your Shrimp campaign
The Question Your Shrimp campaign is currently working to gather support from restaurants, chefs, retailers, & consumers who are pledging not to serve or buy unhealthy imported shrimp. By raising awareness & changing consumer demand in the U.S. (currently, the #1 consumer of imported shrimp), the campaign strives to reduce mangrove deforestation & oppression of coastal communities overseas. The leading cause of mangrove destruction is the meteoric growth of the shrimp farming industry in the developing world. In an effort to produce cheap shrimp, mangroves and their accompanying ecosystem services are stripped from coastlines and replaced by open system shrimp farms that pollute the surrounding environment.

SeaWorld Loses 1 Million Visitors As It Clings To Orca Captivity
SeaWorld's troubles persist as evidenced by its fourth quarter earnings released Thursday. Attendance and revenue continued to drop, and SeaWorld suffered a net loss of $25.4 million for the last quarter of 2014. And it's been another very lousy week for SeaWorld. A beluga whale died after a fight in a tank and SeaWorld Orlando was forced to announce the end of a controversial program that allowed visitors to feed dolphins by hand unsupervised. And none of the new numbers give the troubled company reason to hope for a turnaround. SeaWorld's revenue in Q4 was $264.5 million — a decrease of $7.4 million, or 3 percent, compared to the same period in 2013. Total revenue for 2014 was down 6 percent from 2013. Attendance also took a hit — down by 2.2 percent compared to the fourth quarter of 2013. The Q4 results continue a downward slide for the company. The 2013 documentary "Blackfish" revealed a disturbing track record regarding trainer safety and the care of orca whales. The film also kicked off a spate of backlash against the company, including the introduction of legislation in New York, California and Washington to ban orca captivity. In 2014, the company's stock (SEAS) fell by 50 percent.

Bioassays for antibiotics in aquacultured shrimp
This weekend a student of mine ran a series of bioassays for antibiotics in aquacultured shrimp. She focused on a comparison between ecocertified shrimp (all BAP except for one from Whole Foods) and uncertified shrimp. Whole Foods shrimp showed no antibiotics, farms with antibiotic laden shrimp was equivalent with and without BAP certification. Belizean shrimp farms have largely skipped the BAP certifications and are striving for the ASC certification. That process was put together by WWF and other non-industry groups rather than the Global Aquaculture Alliance. Hopefully the ASC label will perform better than what these results suggest BAP is doing at the moment. I was also encouraged to see the Whole Foods performing well.

Lost Luggage? 7 things to know in case the airline does!
There’s a unique kind of relief that floods your body when you see your suitcase slowly rotating toward you on the baggage carousel, coming back like a loyal pet (or a cold sore). If you’ve listened to our advice, there’s no reason you should ever lose your luggage again, but with a seemingly endless stream of stories about airlines who have forgotten almost a full day’s worth of luggage or temporarily misplaced several show dogs, it’s worth looking into what you should do if it happens to you. Here are the best ways to handle it (right after you shake your clenched fist toward the sky):

UWSP students learn ethnobotany on Belizean adventure
Nine students, two chaperones and 10 days in the field were the recipe for the winter break trip a group of Pointers hold dear in their memory. Professor Virginia Freire, who teaches biology at the University of Wisconsin-Stevens Point, organized a 10-day trip to Belize during the students' Christmas break to teach them about ethnobotany and let them immerse themselves in a new culture. "That's a great lesson for life," Freire said. She said ethnobotany is about the relationship between plants and people. While exploring the country and experiencing life in an environment unlike their own, they also go to meet with a variety of healers and learn from experts in their fields. Brad Gorzek, a senior at the university studying biology and Spanish, said he gained an appreciation for the minimalist lifestyle during his time in Belize. "Their lifestyle was just so drastically different than ours on a day-to-day basis," he said. "A lot less hustle and bustle, and more appreciating the land."

Jam Cruise Confirms 2016 Dates, Ports
Jam Cruise has confirmed a few details next year’s event. The one-of-a-kind cruise will depart Miami on January 6, 2016 before returning on January 11. Along the way, the MSC Divinia will make stops in Belize City, Belize and Cozumel, Mexico. Jam Cruise has also revealed that the lineup will be announced on Thursday, April 30 As such, pre-booking, which is currently open, will end at midnight on Wednesday, April 29. Tickets will then go on sale to the general public on Thursday, May 14.Last year’s Jam Cruise featured performances by the Pretty Lights Live Band, Umhrey’s McGee, The Word, Galactic, Karl Denson’s Tiny Universe, G. Love & Special Sauce, Lettuce, Charles Bradley & His Extraordinaires, John Scofield uberjam Band, Snarky Puppy, A Steve Kimock-led tribute to Jerry Garcia and many more. The ship also made stops in Roatan, Honduras and Costa Maya, Mexico.

Caribbean Community welcomes new Cuba-U.S. relations
Caribbean Community leaders opened a two-day summit in the Bahamas on Thursday, welcoming the United States’ opening with Cuba but reiterating their call for an end to “the senseless trade embargo” against their Spanish-speaking neighbor. “At our summit meeting with Cuba last December, I called on the U.S. Congress to end its senseless trade embargo against Cuba. I do so again now,” Antigua and Barbuda Prime Minister Gaston Browne said in his outgoing speech as chairman of the 15-member regional bloc known as Caricom. Browne, who became chairman just weeks after winning his twin-island’s elections last year, noted that the region has had diplomatic relations with Cuba dating back to 1972 when “Four independent member states of our community ended the U.S.-inspired, hemispheric diplomatic embargo of Cuba.” “We in the Caribbean can rightly take credit for being on the right side of history in this matter,” he said.

Caribbean health officials to hold Chikungunya conference
The Caribbean Public Health Agency, or CARPHA, will host a conference next week in the Trinidadian capital of Port-of-Spain to discuss the region's response to Chikungunya. The March 3-5 gathering, financed by the European Union, will bring together experts from across the region and from other parts of the world to talk about Chikungunya and other mosquito-borne diseases. "The meeting also provides a unique opportunity to renew efforts to position mosquito-borne diseases as a high priority in the public health agenda, and examine the potential for public-private partnerships, as government alone cannot solve the problem," CARPHA Executive Director James Hospedales said in a statement. The Chikungunya virus was first detected in the Western Hemisphere in 2013. Since then, authorities have logged more than 800,000 suspected cases in the Caribbean and Latin America.

Caribbean Heads of State Meet in the Bahamas
The 15-nation body will focus on the region’s “human, cultural and natural assets” at the two-day summit. A two-day summit of the Caribbean Community leaders in Nassau, the Bahamas, began Thursday. ​Heads of government of the 15-member Caricom trade bloc will discuss three main issues over the next two days: the bloc’s Marijuana Commission, the role of the Food and Agriculture Organisation in supporting the agricultural development in the region, and relations with the Dominican Republic. Another area of discussion will be issues related to reparation for native genocide and slavery. Each Caricom country has been mandated to establish a slavery reparations commission. The leaders will also look into how the 15 member countries can combine their human, natural and socio-economic assets to help each other. The 15 member states of Caricom are Antigua and Barbuda, the Bahamas, Barbados, Belize, Dominica, Grenada, Guyana, Haiti, Jamaica, Montserrat, St. Lucia, St. Kitts and Nevis, St. Vincent and the Grenadines, Suriname and Trinidad and Tobago.

Caricom Leaders Start Talks In Nassau Today
CARIBBEAN leaders begin talks today in Nassau over key regional issues as the regional body moves to strengthen unity among its members as a voting bloc. #Ahead of today’s meetings, CARICOM foreign ministers convened yesterday to discuss recommendations for candidates to lead two international organisations: the Organisation of American States and the Commonwealth Secretariat. #In an interview with The Tribune, Minister of Foreign Affairs and Immigration Fred Mitchell confirmed that foreign ministers have not reached consensus on regional candidates for Commonwealth Secretary General and Assistant Secretary General of the OAS. #The only candidate for the OAS Secretary General is Uruguayan Foreign Minister Luis Almagro. #“All of those elections come up this year,” Mr Mitchell said, “so there is a very spirited discussion on how those choices are going to be made and who those choices will be. The difficulty with the assistant secretary general position is that there are two CARICOM countries vying for that position: one is Belize and the other is Guyana.

Fly from New York, Chicago, Washington, San Fran and more to Belize City, Belize for only $326 return with American Airlines.

Vacation in Belize For A Family, Adventurous, Or Romantic Getaway!
Belize is the place for a range of vacation destinations! Whether you want a nice holiday vacation, need to have a great adventure, or seeking a romantic getaway with just the two of you, Belize is it! The country has such a diverse natural landscape that it will feel like several vacations rolled into one! There aren’t many places you can go and visit the rain forest one day and the beach the next! Planning a vacation is the easy part, funding it, is the difficult part! Belize can be extremely affordable! If you have some cash to spend, you can create a tailor-made Holiday getaway! Just want to have a fun adventure? Backpack through Belize without spending much money at all! If you’re ready for a romantic time where you don’t have to do anything then search the five star luxury hotels and resorts!


  • Question Your Shrimp campaign, 2min.

    The Question Your Shrimp campaign is currently working to gather support from restaurants, chefs, retailers, & consumers who are pledging not to serve or buy unhealthy imported shrimp. By raising awareness & changing consumer demand in the U.S. (currently, the #1 consumer of imported shrimp), the campaign strives to reduce mangrove deforestation & oppression of coastal communities overseas.
  • Know the Vision, No Division, 3min. Belize Natural Energy has a uniquely inspiring video. Well done! "Belize Natural Energy: a visionary leader in energy, mining the potential within. Produced by 3D Prototype Animation"

  • Mission trip to Belize, 11min. St. John's Hollywood House. January 19-26, 2014

  • Snorkeling in Belize February 2015, 14min. Here are some highlights from a Snorkeling excursion I went on when we stopped in Belize on our Caribbean Cruise.

  • Belize River Excursion, 5min. Our Belize River excursion on 2/4/2015. We entered the mouth of the Belize River from the Caribbean. Going up river we saw crocodiles, Iguanas, black howler monkeys, herons, dolphins, a stork and Amazon Jungle Tree Bats

  • Neotropical Otter & Be Kind Belize songs performed by Island Academy students, 1min. This is a song written and performed by children at a primary school in Belize about the fantastic Neotropical Otter. The delightful children of Island Academy, San Pedro, Ambergris Caye, Belize composed and performed these two songs as part of the Be Kind Belize Humane Education programme. They are too cute for words.

  • Glossophaga soricina Drinking Sugar Water, 1min. Glossophaga are new world nectar-feeding bats. As such they have a very high metabolism and need to be fed sugar water when they're caught. This individual was caught as part of a bat research project in Southern Belize:

  • Manta Ray, 1min. Manta ray cruising Long Caye, Belize. (Feb. 26, 2015)

  • Belize 2015!, 8min.

  • Caye Caulker, Belize 2015, 3min. Some of the adventures I got up to while i spent 8 nights in Caye Caulker.

  • Belize 2015, 3min. FEB 2015 Belize adventures, 2 weeks covered 5/7 territories and the major cities. This is just some highlights put together of the amazing stuff Belize has to offer.

  • The Blonde Side Does Yoga in Belize with Chi Junky, 4min. The Blonde Side's Jayme Lamm does a few quick yoga moves and stretches in Belize with Chi Junky's Rachelle W.

  • Picking coconuts in Belize, 2.5min.

  • Re: Today's Belize News: February 27, 2015 [Re: Marty] #501605
    02/27/15 07:46 AM
    02/27/15 07:46 AM
    Joined: Oct 1999
    Posts: 71,887
    oregon, spr
    Marty Offline OP

    Marty  Offline OP

    The Guardian

    Where will Yolanda be when the counting is happening if she is not good with numbers?
    After any elections, the ballot boxes are taken into counting rooms where the process of counting takes place. All candidates are free to be present at the counting stations and they can actively participate in the counting process. The question on the minds of all Belizeans at this point in time is: where will Yolanda Shackron be? She has publicly admitted on National News that she is not good with numbers and that anything to do with such she would have to ask Jules. So when the counting takes place and the numbers go beyond 300 what will happen with Shackron's brain. Surely Jules will not be there for her to ask him for help so we would really want to know what will happen. Of course that question will be answered next week Wednesday and even though she will not be able to know what number she was beaten by, one thing is certain she will be beaten!

    BIL - Transforming sporting facilities countywide
    Belize Infrastructure Limited (BIL) is pressing ahead with government’s initiatives to have sporting complexes upgraded across the country. This week work began on the demolition of the Benque Viejo Del Carmen Football Complex. It is not a move of spite, rather one of Transformation as the Belize Infrastructure Limited presses on to construct a new facility there. A total of 4.5 million dollars will be invested and will see the stadium transformed with the placing of lighting to Concacaf Standards, new bleachers, a new natural grass pitch among other amenities. Construction is being done by BCG Limited headed by Salvador Habet and is expected to run between 10 to 12 months. In Belmopan four projects totaling a million dollars are being implemented in Belmopan City. Already construction has been completed at the Belmopan Comprehensive School with a new roof having been placed on the existing basketball court. Another such shed has also been completed at the Our Lady of Guadalupe school with a third under construction at the May Garden area, a fourth and final structure is scheduled to commence shortly in the Hilltop area of Belmopan.

    Belmopan City Council meets with residents
    Members of the Belmopan City Council held their last public meeting with Belmopan residents on Wednesday of last week at the Belmopan Civic Center; just before the March 4th elections. It was an opportunity for local residents to learn about the inner workings of the Belmopan City Council as well as its financial status. In a summary of financial statements, issued by the Belmopan City Council for March 31, 2014 and 2013, it was revealed that the total revenue in 2014 for the Council was $4,461,480.00 while the total expenditure was $4,489,784 and the total assets stood at $12,700,816. From the available data just released, total revenues had increased from $4,442,900.00 in 2013 to $4,461,480.00 in 2014.

    Refurbished streets will relieve traffic pressure into Belmopan
    Inaugural ceremonies were held on Thursday of last week for the opening of the Almond Boulevard and Chiquibul Street, opening a new vista for Mountain View and the Las Flores Community; as well as relieving some traffic pressure going into Belmopan. The project for Almond Boulevard and Chiquibul Street was submitted during the second Cabinet meeting in 2008 and its realization just last week has been a test of patience for some. Improvements to Almond Boulevard and Chiquibul Street has come as a result of a $12,534.06 financial contribution from the Belmopan City Council as well as $417,802.00 from the Government of Belize, under the Belize Municipal Development Project. The newly refurbished roads are just components of the 30 million dollars that the Government is financing on behalf of the people of Belize, from the World Bank. These roads were implemented by the Project Implementation Unit headed by Ernest Raymond at the Belize Social Investment Fund BSIF under the direction of William Lamb Jr., Executive Director of BSIF. The ground work for both streets was done by Isaak Banman, from Synergy Construction.

    12.5% salary increase for BSI workers proposed in new CBA
    On Tuesday February, 24, the Belize Workers’ Union and Belize Sugar Industries arrived at a tentative collective bargaining agreement (CBA) which calls for a wage increase of 12.5% spanning over 4 years. In the first year, beginning 1 July 2014, there will be a 3% increase followed by another 3.5% on 1 July, 2015. Thereafter it will be 3% for each of the following two years. In addition it was agreed that the premium for shift work will be increased and the rate for abnormally wet or dirty work and sandblasting will be adjusted upwards.

    Should a Productive Citizen Go to Jail for Smoking Weed?
    A report on the pros and cons of the decriminalization of marijuana in Belize will be in the hands of the Cabinet Secretary, Carlos Perdomo, on Thursday, February 26, 2015. It will then be made public on Friday, February 27, at 10 a.m. According to the Decriminalization of Marijuana Committee (DOMC), “The document will include the objectives, findings and recommendations on this issue.” In July of 2012, the Ministry of National Security appointed a committee to examine the pros and cons of the decriminalization of up to 10 grams of marijuana. Their task was to “evaluate and, if appropriate, make proposals for the decriminalization of the possession of small portions of Marijuana”.

    Matura never brags about lost cases
    Audrey Matura has become such a glory hound that wherever there is a dispute that attracts media attention she can be found. Readers may recall the time, on October 26, 2013 when she raced to the ‘aid’ of the Yearwood family after a land dispute arose between them and Senior Counsel Rodwell Williams. On December 2, of that same year she made a grand stand in court claiming that parcel 1141 which sits on Cemetery Lane in fact belonged to the Yearwoods and that the owner, Senior Counsel Rodwell Williams was taking advantage of his position, she claimed, “you’re dealing with an attorney who clearly knows everything and every nuance how to get it done and I’m calling him out on that.”

    Ministry of Health puts out Measles Advisory
    The Ministry of Health has been advised by the World Health Organization (WHO) and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) of an outbreak of Measles at the Disneyland Resort in California in the United States of America (USA). In addition, cases are being reported in Canada and one case related to the Disneyland outbreak has been reported in Mexico. Measles is a contagious disease characterized by fever, rash, runny nose and red eyes. It spreads through air droplets when an infected person coughs or sneezes. Although Measles remains prevalent in many parts of the world, Belize has been free from the disease since 1991. In order to maintain our Measles free status, the recommended and most cost-effective public health approach is to advise persons to get vaccinated with the Measles-Mumps-Rubella (MMR) vaccine.

    Old Northern Highway goes from Old to New
    The Old Northern highway has been neglected and abandoned for decades now, when the new highway was constructed traffic was diverted and the old highway was forgotten. Since that time the highway fell into complete disrepair where only minimal work was done on the road to allow the villagers of the 10 or so villages in the area to go in and out of the area. One man who has never given up on the highway has been Hon. Edmund 'Clear the Land" Castro. Even before becoming the representative for Belize Rural North, he has been lobbying and actually doing remedial work on the highway himself through funds he managed to raise and out of pocket. After years of doing this type of effort to improve the road, in September of last year he got what he had been lobbying for, at least partially, when the government decided to pave the first 5 miles of the highway. Shortly thereafter the roadwork began by Rodla Construction Company. Extensive work has gone into the first five miles of road with it being raised and proper base material being compacted on the road. By late January of 2015 the process of hotmixing the road began and when the Guardian visited this week, the first five miles of road are almost now completely hotmixed.

    Police officers conclude Investigative Procedures Instructor Course
    On 27 February 2015, 30 police officers from around the country will graduate from the ‘Investigative Procedures Instructor Course’ at closing ceremonies being hosted by the British High Commissioner, HE Peter Hughes and the Chargé d’Affaires at the United States Embassy, Mr Bruce Matthews. The course is being run by two accomplished trainers from the UK’s College of Policing at Bramshill, who are police officers with over fifty years of experience between them spanning traffic, domestic violence and CIB. This has been made possible as a result of a fruitful collaboration between the criminal justice sector, the British High Commission and the International Narcotics and Law Enforcement Division of the US State Department. This intensive two week course has covered best practice for investigative policing, including how to treat suspects detained by the police, how to carry out police station interviews and what is just the right amount of evidence to justify the laying of a criminal charge. The course is focussed on the new Police Guidelines for the Interviewing and Treatment of Persons in Police Detention that will hopefully be introduced by the Commissioner next month and that will introduce a requirement for all interviews and confession statements to be digitally recorded and prescribe minimum standards for the treatment of persons in police detention.

    Charged for allowing alcohol consumption
    Xiang Chen, 40, Chinese businessman of 2 ˝ miles on the Phillip Goldson Highway is on bail after he was arraigned for unlawfully permitting consumption of liquor on his premises. According to police, on July 25, 2014, Chen sold alcohol and allowed patrons to consume it on his property without authorization to do so. He was arrested and charged but failed to show up at court until Friday, February 20, when he appeared unrepresented before Magistrate Herbert Panton. Chen pleaded not guilty to the offense and was offered bail in the sum of $500 plus one surety of the same amount.

    Two men killed and buried in San Pedro
    San Pedro Town, known to be the number 1 tourism destination in the country, continues to be plagued by drug-related murders, and on Wednesday, February 18, police found 2 men buried in shallow graves 11 miles north of the town. These men have since been identified as 41 year-old Selvin Chi, and 23 year-old Benjamin Molina, and according to their fellow business partner, 51 year-old Jose Wagner, they went on a short mission and didn’t return at the agreed time. Wagner told police that they left his house, located at 11 and a half miles north of the town, at around 5 a.m. that morning. They went out looking for coconuts to prepare coconut oil, but up until midday, they still hadn’t returned. So, police were immediately dispatched to try to look for the men. About less than a mile from Molina’s house, the officers found a blood trail. They concentrated their search efforts in the area of the trail, when they found both men buried in shallow graves.

    Free from local charges extradition battle still pending
    Bahamian businessmen Kelvin Leach, 34, and Rohn Knowles, 29, are free of money laundering charges after their attorney Godfrey Smith made a successful no case submission before Senior Magistrate Sharon Fraser on Wednesday, February 25. The men have been out on bail since September 29 on a charge of failure to declare that they were leaving Belize with more than $10,000 cash. In handing down her decision, Senior Magistrate Fraser pointed out that though there were testimonies that both of the men had more than $10,000 in their possession, no money came to the court as evidence. She also spoke of the word “leaving”. She says a person is deemed in violation of the law when all clearing has been done and you are deemed to have officially left the country. She says the police acted prematurely so she must uphold the no case submission. Leach and Knowles were told they are free to go. However, they cannot leave the country since they are still battling an extradition request.

    Clive Geban and a minor to stand trial for murder
    A Preliminary Inquiry (PI) conducted on Monday, February 23, has concluded that there is sufficient evidence for Clive Geban, 21, and a 17-year-old minor to stand trial in the Supreme Court of Belize for the murder of Ervin Morales, 67. The murder of Morales was extremely upsetting for the people of the peaceful village of Maskall. The senior citizen usually showed up for lunch at the same time everyday at the home of a neighbour who cooks for him. However, the cook became concerned when Morales did not show up on Saturday, January 19, 2013. At around 1:30 p.m. the cook alerted Morales’ neighbour that he did not show up for lunch. The neighbour went to look for him and discovered his body wrapped in a sheet inside his bedroom. Police investigations quickly led to the arrest of Clive Geban who was detained at a checkpoint near the Altun Ha site cutoff two days after the murder, on January 21. Police then apprehended the minor who was 15-years-old at the time. Both were charged for Morales’ murder and have been on remand since.

    Haitian in prison for living illegally in Belize
    Haitian national, Obed Lewis, 25, is an inmate of the Belize Central Prison because he was unable to pay a fine for living in Belize illegally over the last five years. Police picked up Lewis on Thursday, February 19, while he was walking in the King’s Park area. He was handed over to the Immigration Department when he was unable to produce any document to show his legal status in Belize. Immigration investigation shows that Lewis came to Belize in December of 2010 and was living in San Pedro before moving to Belize City in January of this year.

    Mahogany Heights wins in Beverly Castillo Football Competition
    -The 2015 Beverly Castillo Football Competition continued on Sunday 22 February, with three more games on the schedule out at the Ladyville Football Field in Belize Rural Central. In the first game played, Rockville and Largos FC played to a 3-3 draw. The goals for Rockville FC were scored by Omar Maskall (2) and Emerson Gonzalez. For Largos FC, the goals were scored by Denroy McCord (2) and Harold Nava. In game two, La Democracia FC and Williams FC played to a 2-2 draw. The goals for La Democracia FC were scored by Paul Smith and Lincoln Jones. Meanwhile, the goal scorers for Williams FC were Robert Sanker and Walter Sedacy.

    Ignacio Prado Valentine Day Cycling Tour champions
    The Cycling Federation of Belize in collobration with Digicell held the Digicell Valentine Mini Tour on Saturday 21 February and Sunday 22 February, 2015. In the Elite category at the end of the 2 days, Ignacio Prado of Benny’s Megabytes captured the Digicell Mini Tour in an accumulative time of 5:29:21. Prado was followed by Brandon Cattouse of C-Ray Road Addikzx with a time of 5:29:26, and he was followed by Marlon Castillo of Santino’s Ride to Victory in a time of 5:29:35. Oscar Quiros Jr. of Western Spirit Cycling Team finished fourth in a time of 5:29:36 and he was followed by Byron Pope of Benny’s Megbaytes in a time of 5:29:42 to round off the top five finishers in the Digicell Valentine Mini-Tour. The other top ten finishers includes Jose Angel Lopez Robles of Western Spirit Cycling in a time of 5:29:45, and he was followed by Nissan Arana of Predators in a time of 5:33:15, and he was followed by Joel Borland of Digicell 4G Elite Cycling Team in a time of 5:33:25, and he was followed by Ron Vasquez of Western Spirit Cycling Team in a time of 5:33:27, and he was followed by Darnell Barrow of Smart Zoom Team in a time of 5:33:31.

    Trinity Methodist School boys lead in primary schools softball
    The Belize City Primary Schools Softball Competition continues at Rogers Stadium with games in the girls and boys competition on a daily basis. On Tuesday 24 February, 2015, in the first of two games in the boys’ competition, Trinity Methodist School defeated Salvation Army School by the score of 10-5. The winning pitcher for Trinity Methodist was Marcus Lucario and the losing pitcher was Cassian Billary. In the second game of the day, Unity Presbyterian School defeated St. John’s Primary School by the score of 8-3. The winning pitcher was Dennis Colon and the losing pitcher was Maleek Wagner. On Monday 23 February, in the girls’ game played, St. Luke Methodist School defeated Buttonwood Bay Nazarene School by the score of 21-12. The winning pitcher was Samantha Foreman and the losing pitcher was Ivana Mercado.

    Health Hookup
    The Doctor's Order Rum Fits Although most people try to turn a blind eye to it, the problem of excessive drinking tends to be a growing problem. What starts off as one drink a night turns to four or five drinks of hard alcohol a night. Over time the person develops a tolerance leading to the need for a larger quantity of alcohol to achieve the same level of intoxication and its effects. And from the batch of alcoholics there are few who want to turn their life around, and with the help of family they decide they are going to stop drinking. To those people I say, be careful! By no means am I advocating continuing drinking; however the manner in which you quit must be done correctly or else there can be medical consequences. “Delirium Tremens” / “Alcohol Withdrawal Symptoms” is a medical condition that results from abruptly stopping alcohol that leads to changes in mental and neurological functions. This condition tends to affect someone who has been drinking excessive amounts of alcohol (5-6 beers and/or 1 pint of hard alcohol) per day for several months, or someone who has been drinking daily for at least 5 years. The condition may also occur if the alcoholic suffers from a head injury, infection, or drinks substantial amounts without eating properly.

    I think the PUP hierarchy was riding on a high after the convention here in OW East, and, together with their surrogates in the media, began making all sorts of wild predictions of winning the municipals in the upcoming elections. But these days as reality sinks in, anxiety imprints its ugly crinkle on their foreheads. You can see the impressions of worry on Bernard’s face as he speaks each morning and evening on CTV 3, giving endless reviews and interviews on every subject under this sun. If we did not know better, he would want us to think that he was an exceptional Mayor, besting even the late Polo Briceńo and the late Fred Martinez, two of the most respected men to have held that title here in our town. Let me tell you this; Bernard is a literal lightweight compared to those avatars, and his days as Mayor are numbered in single digits. This goes also to the Mayoral candidate in Belize City, where we can draw some parallels with Bernard as to her facial expression and body language. However, in her case, what mostly shows is a heavy ration of naivety. Shakron actually believes she is a political force to be reckoned with, and in like manner of Richard Harrison, will see the light on March 4.

    Communal Livestock Holding Facility handed over to cattle producers in the Belize District
    A Communal Livestock Holding Facility in Willows Bank was officially handed over to cattle producers in the Belize River Valley area at a ceremony held on Wednesday, February 18, 2015. Through the Global Climate Change Alliance (GCCA), the European Union in collaboration with the Government of Belize and United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) financed a three-year project “Enhancing Belize’s Resilience to Adapt to the Effects of Climate Change”. Of the several components of that three-year project, there is Pilot 3: MNRA-CC: Food Security: Building Resilience among Cattle Producers of the Belize District, which included the construction of the livestock holding facility. The objective of this portion of the project is to help mitigate the impacts of climate change and reduce the vulnerability of the livestock industry for small and medium size livestock holders/local producers in the Belize District.

    CWU Finally Meets with Port of Belize Limited
    Arturo “Tux” Vasquez, C.E.O./Receiver of the Port of Belize Limited, was perhaps the happiest man in the business community when the waterfront workers of the Port of Belize held a minor protest on Monday, February 23, because they were unhappy that their water supply was given in plastic pouches instead of five gallon bottles. Vasquez has been entertaining offers from investors interested in buying the Port; however, one of the ghosts for investors is the unresolved collective bargaining procedure with the boisterous waterfront workers. In Late 2013 these individuals threw out Antonio Gonzalez and James McFoy, former PresidentSecretary of the Christian Workers Union, because of dissatisfaction in their negotiating of the Collective Bargaining Agreement with the Port of Belize Limited. They then backed Audrey Matura-Shepherd for President at a general meeting on December 14, 2013.

    GOB clarifies Expenditure figure contained in Cost-Savings Report
    The Ministry of Finance (MOF) of the Government of Belize makes reference to a Report on Proposed Cost-Savings Strategy for the Government of Belize dated June 2014 which was prepared by the Committee to Evaluate and Advise on the Cost Savings Measures for the Government of Belize. This Committee is comprised of members of both staff side and unions side as an offshoot of the Collective Bargaining Process. The MOF wishes to clarify that the figure of $568,453 mentioned in the Report as being GOB’s Advertisement Cost paid to Wave Radio for the Year 2013 is incorrect as it actually represents the payments to this media house for a three year period, being FY2011/12, FY 2102/2013 and part of FY2013/14. (up until the date of the Report), and not for the single year FY2012/2013. The other expenditure figures in the Report related to Advertisement Costs are also for the same three year period.

    GREAT has been expanded to the Benque Viejo Area
    The Gang Resistance Education and Training GREAT, which started in Belize in 2011 has been expanded to the Benque Viejo del Carmen Area. The vision of GREAT is building safer communities’ one child at a time, focusing on the preventing of youth crime, violence and gang involvement. Benque Viejo Police, under the internationally recognized GREAT instructor, Corporal Josue Mckoy, has introduced the program to three schools in the Benque Area. These schools are the Hills of Promise Adventist Primary School in Benque Viejo Town, the Victorious Nazarene Primary School and the Alvin L. Young Nazarene High School in Succotz Village. All students from the involved schools participated in the thirteen weeks of Middle School Curriculum training.

    Kevin Bernard’s incompetence will be his downfall
    There was a time when the popular sentiment was that a swing towards the UDP was imminent for the majority of Town Councils countrywide but that the PUP would hold on to the reins in Orange Walk Town. That last sentiment has been slowly changing over the past months so much so that now it is becoming absolutely clear that the UDP will win even in that municipality. The rampant disillusionment against the Kevin Bernard led PUP Team is now a Reality that will turn the tides against them come next week’s municipal elections. Terrible street conditions and blatant misuse of funds and power are the big issues in the Sugar Land. A quick check on that municipality’s finances as reported on the web show that rather than concentrating on basic services to the people, which include paving and cleaning streets and a good garbage pickup system, this Town Council has completely lost focus and have reneged on the mandate that the very Orangewalkeńos gave them the last elections.

    PUP Mayoral Candidate Thoughts on Women
    Ramon “Monchi” Quiroz, the PUP mayoral candidate for the twin towns, San Ignacio and Santa Elena, was on Love FM’s morning show on Tuesday, February 24, and made one of the most chauvinistic remarks ever by someone vying for public office. He was asked by one of the hosts how he will be able to run a functional municipal government without the financial support of central government. Monchi said that it can be done if residents of the community become actively involved in the development of the municipality. What role can residents play? Keep in mind that Love FM’s morning show has two female hosts. With no hesitation, Monchi said, “On Sundays we will put the women in the community to cook.”

    Hon. Patrick Faber comments on the supposed sale of tablets
    “Call me overly optimistic with faith bubbling over in my Belizean People but after listening to the buzz that students are selling their new tablets, I have concluded that this is simply not true. The one post that is above from Belize Buy and sell is what this rumour is based on. There is no other indication that our students are engaging in selling their tablets. As to the post it is clearly some hater who wants to try to diminish the wonderful success of the government’s initiative. It tries to give the impression that the tablet is rubbish. Anyone who has received one knows what nonsense that is. I’ve seen the countless smiles, heard the many thank you’s so take it from me the tablets are well received and appreciated by our tertiary students!”

    Yolanda is not good with numbers and Troy Gabb and Darrell Carter can’t spell
    It is now a well known fact that PUP City Council mayoral candidate, Yolanda Shackron does not know numbers but it seems that the problem within the People's United Party not knowing much of anything has reached chronic levels. That became evident on Monday night when Troy Gabb once again hosted his weekly show along with failed businessman Darrell Carter. The show which is called the Business Hour is the sick way in which these two individuals purport to give advice to Belizeans on Belize's economy. But they not only try to give advice they attack all of the government's initiatives. While that is their right, the question on everyone's minds when they see this duo on tv is, what authority do they have to be criticizing anything?

    Dates for Tablets Distribution to College Students
    “If 2014 was a year of infrastructure, 2015 will be a year of technology.” – Prime Minister of Belize, Hon. Dean Oliver Barrow. The Government of Belize is currently handing out ASUS MeMO PAD 7 tablet computers to students of all tertiary level learning institutions in the country. It is another New Years Day promise made good by Prime Minister Barrow. The Government purchased over nine thousand tablets from the ASUS parent company in Taiwan for distribution to junior college students in an effort to “bridge the digital divide”. Prime Minister Barrow says, “Whether we are talking about infrastructure, agriculture, tourism or services, at some level these days all enterprise success, all societal and cultural progress, demand increasing familiarity with, and mastery of, Information and Communication Technology. Globally this recognition has reached the status of a truism, and Belize cannot be left behind.”

    Abraham Lopez, 40, charged with carnal knowledge of girl, 11
    Abraham Lopez, 40, is on remand at the Belize Central Prison for allegedly engaging in sexual acts with a minor from the age of 11. Allegations are that between October 2, 2012 an October 3, 2013, Lopez had sexual intercourse with the minor who was 11-years- old but the incident was only reported over a week ago. The victim is now 13 years old. Lopez was arrested and charged by police over the weekend.

    Charged for allowing alcohol consumption
    Xiang Chen, 40, Chinese businessman of 2 ˝ miles on the Phillip Goldson Highway is on bail after he was arraigned for unlawfully permitting consumption of liquor on his premises. According to police, on July 25, 2014, Chen sold alcohol and allowed patrons to consume it on his property without authorization to do so. He was arrested and charged but failed to show up at court until Friday, February 20, when he appeared unrepresented before Magistrate Herbert Panton. Chen pleaded not guilty to the offense and was offered bail in the sum of $500 plus one surety of the same amount.

    Evan Moody sentenced for drug trafficking now charged for illegal ammunition
    Evan Moody, 33, IT Technician of Ladyville Village, is serving his first few weeks of a three year sentence for pleading guilty to drug trafficking on February 6 but more time might be on the books for him after he was charged with keeping illegal ammunition on Friday, February 20. Allegations are that on February 5 at Gracie Bank, Moody was found in possession of a bag containing 64.7 grams of marijuana and another containing 16.2 grams. He was also allegedly found with a red and bronze Aguila brand 12 gauge cartridge. On Friday, February 6, Moody appeared before Magistrate Herbert Panton and pleaded guilty to drug possession but said it was not for sale but to make insect repellent. Magistrate Panton sentenced him to three years imprisonment and a fine of $10,000. He was returned to court before Senior Magistrate Sharon Fraser on February 20 to face a charge of keeping unlicensed ammunition.

    Wild Shooting in San Pedro leaves toddler dead and his mother in critical condition
    Charlie Daniel Espat, a 2 year-old toddler, became the latest casualty to gun violence in a family from San Pedro Town that has seen what some would say are too many tragedies. This defenseless child was sleeping in the bed of his parents, Rolando Espat Sr, and Aleyda Sandoval on Tuesday, February 24 at around 1:30 p.m. The family believed they were safe inside their apartment in the San Pedrito Area of the island. About 15 minutes later, however, armed assailants opened fire on their front door spraying bullets which penetrated into the house. The sleeping family were caught by surprise and after about 8 or 9 gunshots, the area quieted once again. Rolando Espat Sr. immediately assessed the situation, trying to find out if his common-law wife and baby had been hit.

    Free of Human Trafficking Charges
    Belizean mechanic of Mahogany Street, Noellwyn Lester Ramclam, 50, and Cuban permanent resident, Alberto Quintana, 49, are free of immigration charges after authorities went to court on Wednesday, February 25, and request that the charges be dropped. Ramclam and Quintana were facing charges for aiding two Cubans to remain in Belize illegally. According to reports, on Friday, November 28, Yoelkis Garcia, 29, and Jaema Manuela Iglesia Aldana, 27, entered Belize illegally through the Mopan River in the Cayo District. There they were allegedly met by Ramclam and Quintana who used a grey Toyota Corolla with taxi license plate to transport them to Belize City.

    Orange Walk Technical girls and Independence High School boys are national secondary schools football champions
    The 2014-2015 National Secondary Schools Football Competition came to an end on Saturday 21 February, 2015, at the Norman Broaster Stadium in San Ignacio Town. The championship was played over the weekend of 20 and 21 February and was hosted by St. Ignatius High School. On Saturday 21 February, 2015, in the female championship game, Orange Walk Technical High School (representing the Northern Region) defeated Georgetown Technical High School (representing the Southern Region) by the score of 2-0 to capture the National Secondary Schools Football Championship. The goals for Orange Walk Technical High School were scored by Gisel Baeza. In the consolation game for third place, St. Catherine Academy (representing the Central Region) defeated Mopan Technical High School (representing the Western Region) in penalty shoot-out by the score of 4-3. The game ended in a 0-0 draw at regulation time.

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