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Last night's TV news on Channel 7, Channel 5 and CTV 3
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The San Pedro Sun
Strange submersible object on the reef
Ambergris Caye Police and Coast Guard officials are investigating the discovery of a strange submersible object that was found floating on the reef. Shortly after 3PM, police were tipped off about the object and headed about six miles north of San Pedro Town near the Mexico Rocks Area where they observed the device stuck on the reef.
San Pedro Police did confirm that indeed they are investigating what the object is, but at this point they are unable to say what it is and where it came from. The San Pedro Sun will continue to follow up on this story.
San Pedro Tiger Sharks chomp on Dangriga Warriors
The National Elite Basketball League (NEBL) hosted some great games over the weekend as teams countrywide continued to battle for supremacy in the league. On Saturday March 7th, the San Pedro Tiger Sharks hosted the Dangriga Warriors in their second home game of the season. The game was played at the San Pedro High School and as usual, brought much excitement to the spectators, with an electrifying game that saw a home win.
For the Tiger Sharks, Saturday’s game had a sense of déjà vu, as in 2014; there was a similarly thrilling match against the Dangriga Warriors. In fact the “Culture Boys” were one of only two teams that almost claimed a victory on Tiger Sharks’ home court. And like the 2014 game, this weekend’s game was another nail-biter as the Dangriga Warriors were down by only four points, in one instance, causing home fans to rally and call on their defense of home turf.
Throughout the match, the San Pedro Tiger Shark had full domination of the court but midway through the fourth quarter, the home team was up by only four points. However, in their usual style, the San Pedro Tiger Sharks were able to turn around the energy and seal an 87 to 79 victory.
Newly Elected San Pedro Town Council Officially Sworn-in
The seven members of the newly elected San Pedro Town Council (SPTC) were officially sworn-in during a short ceremony on Friday, March 6th. Invited guests gathered at the SPTC conference room to witness the Mayor and his six Councilors pledging to uphold all the laws and regulations of Belize and San Pedro Town and promote the healthy development of the island. The 2015-2018 SPTC is comprised of Mayor Daniel Guerrero and councilors Gabriel “Gaby” Nuñez, Severo ‘Severito” Guerrero, Flora Ancona, Hector “Tito” Alamilla, Ruben “Rux” Gonzalez and Gary Grief.
Once protocol was established, Mayor Guerrero delivered a short welcome address. “Election and politics is over. I am ready to work along with all my councilors get this island back on track. I am a very hard working person and I expect my councilors to give it their all while on duty. They will have to work hard for this community as I am very dedicated to my job and so should they be. There is a lot of things to do on the island and we need to start doing them,” said Guerrero. He also mention that the SPTC will be reaching out to all community members to collaborate in the development and well-being of the island. “We hope that the Town Council can collaborate with all members of community, because we will definitely need all of your help. We cannot do this alone, you all know that; we ask for your support, for your ideas, to lend a helping hand when we need it.”
Congratulations to SPJC Female Football Team as ATLIB Nothern Regional Champions!
Flashbacks- The Many Uses of The San Pedro Community Center
This is a very important building in the history of San Pedro. It was built with money from government and free labor of San Pedranos to give San Pedro a Community Center. As a community Center, Peace Corps Volunteers mounted a small library and game room which included ping pong, Chinese checkers, chess, etc. for the children. All weddings and occasional quinceaños were celebrated in the Community Center.
Later on San Pedro High School transformed it into the first high school of the Island. When San Pedro high moved into its own building in 1987, San Pedro’s first mayor, Gilberto Chico Gomez then transformed it one more time into the San Pedro Town Hall. It is a historic building that has served many purposes- a building that San Pedranos can really be proud of.
25 Years Ago- Villagers Cooking on Homemade Drum Ovens
Some of the best journey cakes (or Johnny cakes) sweet bread, Creole buns, or even salt bread used to be baked in a special oven that was actually made right here in San Pedro. As a matter of fact I have a neighbor who still uses it today. This oven never had any electronic faults or defects, but it did rust after some time and needed replacement when it got too rusty. I am talking about the “drum oven” or the “horno”, as it was called in Spanish, that was used over the fire hearth 25 years ago.
Let me teach you how to make one. First you need to locate a nice metal drum. You cut from the bottom of the drum (about ten inches from bottom) around the circumference. Now you need a lid or cover for your oven and for this you cut off the top lid of the drum using a cold chisel and a hammer. You also need to get two pieces of steel rods to place on top of the oven, thus providing a surface for the lid to rest upon. (refer to drawings)
Ministry of Education Looks into Fake Diploma Sales
Belize’s Ministry of Education, Youth and Sports has taken to investigating an advertisement that has been circulating on social media in which the profile called “Diploma Guy” is offering fake school diplomas from high school all the way up to masters degrees for schools in Belize, the U.S. and even from European schools.
“Diploma Guy” is advertising diplomas to any school of choice at the going price of $4,000 with a one to two weeks delivery process. He asks for a 30% deposit with the balance upon the delivery of the phony certificates.
Misc Belizean Sources
Short term vacancies at Peace Corps Belize for the following positions:
- Q’eqchi Language and Cultural Facilitator
- Spanish Language and Cultural Facilitator
- Kriol Language and Cultural Facilitator
APPLICATION DEADLINE: March 27, 2015
Position Summary: The Language and Cultural Facilitator (LCF) is part of the Peace Corps Pre‐Service Training (PST) team responsible for language training and cross‐cultural instruction to new Peace Corps Trainees. PST is
critical in preparing the Peace Corps Trainees to successfully serve 27 months in Belize as Peace Corps Volunteers. The LCF plans and implements daily language lessons, provides cross‐cultural instruction to Trainees, and
documents each Trainees’ progress and competency levels through their language acquisition process. The LCF also helps organize community entry activities for new Trainees in their target language and is the primary
resource for local cross‐cultural information. The LCF may be required to reside at the training community from Monday to Friday with a local host family,
identified by Peace Corps. She/he assists in reviewing all language materials and language manuals and helps to update the language training resources based on best practices, at the end of the contract period.
An update from the 2015 Youth Ambassadors from Belize!
So far their exchange has been quite an experience with lots of learning at the workshops they are attending at Georgetown University and experiencing their first snowy weather in Washington DC! More to come as they continue their travels.
The Youth Ambassadors Program brings together high school students and adult mentors from countries across the Americas to promote mutual understanding, increase leadership skills, and prepare youth to make a difference in their communities.
Exchanges are primarily from Latin America and the Caribbean to the United States, but also include delegations from the United States to select countries.
Participants will engage in workshops, community service activities, team building exercises, meetings with community leaders, and home stays with American families. Upon their return home, the students apply what they have learned to implement projects that serve needs in their communities.
Belize Electricity Selects Varasset Software for Work and Asset Management
BEL’s rapidly growing customer base and increasing demand for power require significant power system construction. BEL expects this expansion to continue for the foreseeable future. BEL determined that it was essential to improve construction project cost-control, productivity tracking and long-term asset maintenance. Therefore they investigated an array of software solutions, comparing functionality, cost, ability to interface with existing systems, and proven successful implementations. After extended due diligence, BEL selected Varasset.
BEL will use Varasset to manage distribution work activities, asset management and project cost tracking, including line extensions/maintenance, system improvements vegetation management (significant due to rainforest growth) and accounts payable for contractor work. Varasset will interface with BEL’s existing ESRI and other internal systems, automating and streamlining work processes.
Congratulations to Hot Mama’s Belize
EXPORTBelize, BELTRAIDE congratulates Hot Mama’s Belize for its participation in Mr. Densil Williams’s case study.The study entitled Competing against Multinationals in Emerging Markets draws on efficiency theory, portfolio theory and market structure theory as the lens through which to explain business survival/ failure. By using those theoretical insights along with case studies the book provides a comprehensive set of lessons which successful small firms have adopted in order to survive and prosper in an increasingly hostile competitive manufacturing sector where large firms are mostly dominant. Drawing lessons about competing in a highly competitive sector, the book uses the of narrative in social research to inform conclusions about factors which lead to survival and prosperity.
The Book is available on Amazon.
Rehabilitation of the Hummingbird Highway
The Government of Belize (GOB) has received a Technical Assistance (TA) Grant from the Kuwait Fund for Arab Economic Development (KFAED) to assist in financing the services of consultants to prepare a technical and economical feasibility study and detailed designs for rehabilitating the Hummingbird Highway, between Belmopan Roundabout Junction and Dangriga in the Stann Creek District.
The feasibility study and detailed design were completed by the end of 2014 and an application for funding was made by the GOB. Members of the Funding Agency visited Belize and performed their due diligence and assessment of the design and scope of works. The project for the Rehabilitation of the Hummingbird Highway was favorably appraised in December 2014. In February 2015 the Board of Directors of KFAED approved the loan for the rehabilitation works. With the no-objection from the Funding Agency, the award for the supervision of the works was made to the consulting engineers who performed the design.
BOLEDO DRAWING for Wednesday, March 11, 2015: 75
Passing of Mrs. Fe Trejo
Mayor Daniel Guerrero, the San Pedro Town Council and Staff would like to extend its deepest condolences to the Trejo family on the passing of Mrs. Fe Trejo. May her soul rest in peace.
Mr. Albert Gordon passes away
Mayor Daniel Guerrero, the San Pedro Town Council and Staff would like to extend its deepest condolences to the Gordon and Parham family on the passing of Mr. Albert Gordon on March 3rd. May his soul rest in peace.
Women Without Borders Exhibit
The Benque House of Culture is opening this year's Women Without Borders Exhibit this evening at 7:00pm.
Calling all artist...
just a reminder that the deadline is April 10th to enter the Emerging Voices Awards Competition! If you have work in paintings, drawings, photography,sculpture, mixed medium etc...that are less than 5 years old and your work depicts a further understanding of the region (Latin America/Caribbean) then you should enter! All that is required is a high resolution digital copy of the artwork...Prizes include a trip to New York in October, publication in a magazine and $40,000 in each category! If you need further information contact Shari Williams at the Bliss, we would be delighted to assist... or visit the website at https://www.etouches.com/ehome/emerging-voices/256012/
PUP Say Briceno Recording Is “Internal Party Matter”
Last night after the John Briceno recording hit the news, it was like a bomb had been dropped on the PUP. There it was, the former Deputy Prime Minister and Party Leader secretly recorded referring to his former colleagues as robbers who stole – in his words, quote, “millions and millions and millions and millions and millions of dollars from the people,” end quote, and stating that, quote, “had this been another country they would have been in jail right now.” End quote.
That is very serious stuff – and the gravity of it is hard to overstate: Briceno, after all, was the Deputy Prime Minister for almost ten years – when this alleged thievery was happening. And more than that, he was secretly recorded saying these things in confidence to a trusted party supporter – which would suggest that his statements are a true reflection of what he believes are facts.
Briceno Wanted To Challenge Fonseca
And so the PUP has made it clear it will try – publicly at least to preserve the party status quo under the banner of “party unity” – that much cited, but often elusive intangible. But the real bottom line out of today’s meeting is that we are reliably informed – at least one senior executive member did call for Briceno to publicly apologize or face expulsion. That motion, though, only got support from one other executive member. In the end, Briceno was not even made to face any sanction such as suspension – likely because the fragile party cannot sustain it at this time.
Still, though there is deep resentment against him for what he said – as was made clear in Mr Musa’s remarks, which you just saw.
And indeed, it’s not just what he said – it’s more like what he didn’t say. In the 65 minute recording Briceno validated just about every suggestion of scandal made against the Musa Administration between 1998 and 2008. He referred to specific corrupt deals such as Galleria Maya and outlined step by step how the public purse was fleeced.
PUP Tries To Focus On Municipal Defeat Hangover
And so while the secret recording is still being translated and transcribed – and there will be days to come of revelations from it – the PUP, from what they told the media today, is going to act like none of this is happening; pretend that the recording is an internal party matter and that only they have heard the tape and its lurid allegations. Of course, that is an Alice in Wonderland position, and most likely an untenable one as the public curiosity about Mr. Briceno’s revelations is at a fever pitch. People have been asking us all day to post all the transcripts and all the contents so that the public can hear it. Not so easily done, since the secret recording is of a poor quality – and, again, it is 65 minutes long.
But, today the PUP party leader – voluntarily made no direct reference to it – and only spoke of the recording when he was pressed to do so. What he did want to talk about was the original main agenda item for today’s meeting – and, that is, the party’s post mortem on the disastrous result from last week’s municipal election.
Fonseca told the press that the PUP has a lot of work to do…
The Wrath Of The Municipal Math Not Nice For PUP
And while everything is open for discussion, it is not clear how much is open for change. We’ve heard many complaints coming out of prominent PUP insiders after the election defeat – and right that they should. As we have reported, the numbers show that the defeat is massive.
A breakdown of the overall results, shows that in Belize City - in terms of percentage points - the UDP slate matched its 2006 and 2009 successes when the UDP was at the height of its popularity.
In Belmopan, the gain was the largest for the UDP, where the winning slate, shot up to a higher percentage of the vote than it had enjoyed in the last three elections – gaining 16 percentage points since 2012.
The Lord and The Labour Movement
Lord Ashcroft is going to be back in Belize soon and he really wants to meet with the Labour Unions. 7News has seen an internal email circulated to members of the National Trade Union Congress of Belize dated today. It contains an email from Amalia Mai, the CEO of Channel 5 writing on behalf of her boss, Lord Ashcroft. For the second time in three weeks, she invites the union umbrella group to meet with Lord Ashcroft. Mai’s email says that, quote, “discussions would be in areas of mutual interest and if you may have any topic of particular interest, I am sure it could be raised.” End quote.
The NTUCB executive is scheduled to meet next week Thursday when this invitation is expected to be discussed.
Cops Got Gun On Pedro
We’ve been reporting extensively on the drug war in San Pedro and San Pedro police – along with heavy support from City police - say they have been cracking down on the drug gangs that are causing much of the violence.
On Friday 6th March that led Police conducted to the residence of 51 year old Peter Moses Hernandez, known as Campos, where 6 persons were detained for a .22 silver and wooden Taurus Brand pistol. They were all jointly for kept firearm without a gun license and kept ammunition without a gun license.
Peace in The Parks Program Gets Cash
A month ago we told you about Restore Belize’s Peace in the Parks program. The program focuses on renovating or building recreational spaces for kids and promoting literacy in Southside Belize City. Well, Restore Belize will be able to enrich that program with a $51,000 cheque that was donated to the organisation today. A small handing over ceremony was held this morning at the Ministry of Education Office and program officer for Restore Belize, Marie Munoz further discussed how the donation will enhance the scope of the program.
Hon. Patrick Faber - Minister of Education, Youth and Sports
"Restore Belize is the government of Belize and we, as i've said just now - applauded the efforts. I think they're doing very silently sometimes, I don't think they blow their horns enough. But very silently they are assisting the community, particularly here in Belize City - to eradicate some of the very very difficult situations that exist. This initiative from peace in the parks will help to alleviate some of this conditions. We give our young people especially, some positive alternative.”
Fake Diplomas, Real Consequences
Remember the tablets that the Minister of Education distributed to students in February? Well, as we told you at least one of the students has put his one up on Facebook for sale. But it’s not only tablets, it seems that you can get a fake diploma along with that. We were forwarded this facebook conversation between “Diploma Guy” – the one apparently supplying the fake diplomas and a potential buyer. According to Diploma Guy, he can supply a fake diploma from any university in Belize, America and Europe for $4,000. In response to this, the Ministry of Education sent out a press release stating quote “The MOE informs the general public that any person found in possession of any such documents under the Belize criminal Code …..will be liable to imprisonment for 2 years and those found guilty of being a common forger is liable to life imprisonment.” Although that is a strict warning for the public, this also sends a warning to the Ministry to improve on verification standards. Here is what Education Minister Patrick Faber had to say.
Making Science Appealing
It’s Reef Week and Oceana BELIZE today organised a Science Symposium for secondary and tertiary level students today at the Bliss. There were a number of presentations about the reef, coastal zone and marine protection. The main objective was to engage students in the discussion about protecting marine life and resources. OCEANA’s Marine Scientist, Dr. Isani Chan explained why symposiums matter.
Dr. Isani Chan, Oceana
"Today we have a science symposium in which we have invited several schools to the science symposium for them to have a take based on the presenters we have put together. Based of the line we have Dr. Ed Boles who will be presenting topic based on the coast line, what are some of the negative effects we are facing that related to global warming, temperature changes. We have Dr. Rachael Graham that will presenting as well - dealing with sharks.
Cops Caught Campos Killers
Last night, we told you how 26 year-old Luis Ricardo Campos was found stabbed to death in Orange Walk Town on Sunday morning, March 8. Well, Orange Walk police have been investigating and today, they made 2 arrests for this crime.
Those two, who now stand accused of killing Campos are Dennis Reneau, seen here in black Shirt and pony tail, and Alexis Ramirez. They were charged with murder, and arraigned before Senior Magistrate Merlene Moody. Bail WAS DENIED, and they were remanded to prison until April 29.
Detectives Say Deshawn Did It
San Pedro Police finally arrested and charged 21 year-old Deshawn Goff of the DFC area with attempted murder, dangerous harm, and use of deadly means of harm. This, as we told you last week, was for the shooting of 13 year-old student Meredith Escalante.
Shooting In Western Village
Last night we told you about the shooting in Belize City and about the shooting Roaring Creek, but we didn’t have the details to share with you then. Well, police still have not sent the official details, but we’ve learned that it happened on Sunday evening at around 5:00.
2 masked men went into a yard of a house in the Hattieville Area OF Roaring Creek where they opened fire on a group of people socializing under a tree in the yard. 21 year-old Barrington Moro appeared to have been the target, and he was critically injured while one of his friends, Maxine Neal was shot in the foot.
Moro’s family declined comment to the media.
Drowned In Mopan
17 year-old Michael Quintanilla, a resident of Succotz Village in Cayo drowned on Sunday afternoon after he and his friends went for a swim in the Mopan River after lunch.
It appears that he had just eaten, and he and his friends swam across the river. Everything was fine until he tried to make it back across, and his friends realized that he had gone under, most likely from a cramp. Our colleague from PLUS TV spoke with police and Quintanilla’s family yesterday, and here’s what they had to say:
Hon. John’s Rant Was Far-Ranging
The John Briceno secret recording – everybody’s been talking about it today – and that’s because in Belize’s political lore – it is completely without precedent. And that’s because, it is more than a “fish from rivabattam” – Briceno was the Deputy Prime Minister and Party Leader of the PUP – so he has first hand knowledge of what he’s talking about. And while we might lose perspective because of the local nature of politics, in real terms, It’s kind of like Vice President Joe Biden bad talking President Barrack Obama – but not just insulting him, going further, to suggest devious behaviour.
Briceno also gives a first hand view from within the party of the machinations against him:..
Hon. John Briceno
“Two years when we had the convention in Dangriga, we had about 15 thousand people who went to the convention and we could have brought more but we didn’t have money for more buses. But by 2011 the two sides, Said and Mark on the other side are screwing me, when I go to the people who have money and are willing to help us they say bwai…and they don’t give me money. I had already spent 3 million dollars out of pocket.
5 Belizean massage therapists were given their diplomas yesterday for completing a Holistic Massage course in Barbados. The main objective of the International Therapy Examination Council Holistic Massage Course is to improve standards and quality of holistic healing in the Caribbean. The participants traveled to Barbados along with other therapists from Jamaica and Dominica and one of the Belizean participants - Aimee Symre came out on top alongside 4 others in the Caribbean. ITEC trainer, Patricia Berry Greenidge explained what this achievement means for the development of the Spa and Wellness industry in Belize.
ITEC is the largest body worldwide of holistic and beauty therapy.
P.U.P. Executive Discusses Incendiary Recording
The National Executive of the People’s United Party, along with municipal representatives, met at Independence Hall today in extended session. It’s the first meeting following a devastating, near absolute loss [...]
P.U.P. Leaders Say Recording Will Be Handled Internally
The hour-long recording was leaked on Tuesday, but last Friday, the Prime Minister said that he was going to make it available. In it, Briceño claims that tens of millions [...]
P.U.P. Charts Road Ahead Post Municipal Loss
So with the recording under wraps for now and with the P.U.P. determined to handle it internally, the party has another ten thousand pound gorilla in the room. In municipal [...]
Briceño Supports Fonseca as P.U.P. Leader
Only one politician issued a public declaration of his support for Francis Fonseca today. Even before the leaked recording, Briceño has been seen by many as the man to replace [...]
Municipal Elections Were a Wakeup Call
There was no announcement of any shakeup of the party. And in closing the very brief press session today, Fonseca reached out to the party’s supporters who he says must [...]
B.C.V.I. In Jeopardy From New Competition
The Belize Council for the Visually Impaired, BCVI, a non-profit organization established in 1981, has been assisting the underprivileged by providing optometric services at reduced prices. The income derived from [...]
Boat Aground Since December 2014
On December thirty-first 2014, a French captain crashed his steel hull vessel into the reef near some coral rubble when he missed the channel near Caye Caulker. Late January, an [...]
Reef Week Celebrated
We caught up with OCEANA’s VP Chanona at a science symposium this afternoon at the Bliss Center for the Performing Arts. The symposium is one of the many events being [...]
MoE Speaks on Fake Diplomas
Last week, the Ministry of Education issued a release condemning the purchase and procurement of fake copies of academic certificates, after a Facebook post showed a conversation with an alleged [...]
Case on Destruction of Noh Mul Goes Before the Court
Two years after it was grazed to the ground, the case of the destruction of the Noh Mul archaeological site came up this morning before Magistrate Hurl Hamilton. U.D.P. Standard [...]
Police Seek Mechanic Who Stole Vehicle
Luigi Zaldivar reported to police that a man who was repairing his truck made off in it almost two weeks ago and hasn’t returned since. Sometime during the last week [...]
2 Men Charged for Brutal OW Murder
Deportee from the United States, twenty-six year old Luis Campos, was stabbed to death in a shack on the grounds of Cuello’s Stables in Orange Walk on Sunday morning. Police [...]
3 Men Acquitted for 2012 Murder
A trio of men, on remand at the Belize Central Prison since August 2012, has been acquitted of the joint charge of murder in the Orange Walk Supreme Court. This [...]
Private Prosecutor Named in Murder Trial
There is a significant development in the upcoming trial in respect of the murder of former educator and political scientist, Carlos Espat, who was found dead inside his home back [...]
10 Charged for Firearm Offences in San Pedro
Elsewhere during the recent police offensive, a raid on the residence of another notorious San Pedrano family yielded an unlicensed firearm and eight rounds of matching ammunition. Fifty-one-year-old Peter Moses [...]
Police Conduct Sweep of San Pedro Town
An intense sweep of San Pedro Town has resulted in multiple arrests for criminal offenses ranging from drug trafficking and firearm possession to attempted murder. The crackdown led to the [...]
UNESCO Contributes to RESTORE Belize
Since launched in 2011, RESTORE Belize’s Peace in the Parks program has refurbished a number of public spaces and staged entertainment in south side communities. This morning, UNESCO made a [...]
3 Students Recognized in Poster Competition
Three students: Vanyah Vernon, Victor Lopez, and Amauri Amoa placed first, second and third respectfully in the Belize City Lions Club’s twenty-seventh annual Peace Poster Competition. The students, who are [...]
Women in Art Exhibition Opens Thursday
Final touches are being made to the Belisle Art Gallery where the fifth annual Women in Art Exhibition will open on Thursday night at the Bliss Center for the Performing [...]