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Today's Belize News: June 24, 2016 #515425
06/24/16 05:30 AM
06/24/16 05:30 AM
Joined: Oct 1999
Posts: 80,387
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, LOVETV, PGTV, West Vision (Cayo) and CTV 3. Also with the most recent Open Your Eyes, Rise and Shine Morning Show, and the Dickie Bradley Specials

The San Pedro Sun

Kayak Race in San Pedro July 3
As part of Dia de San Pedro 2016!

Countdown to the Lobster Fest Block Party
There are just two more days to go before San Pedro’s grand celebration of the annual Lobster Fest 2016. But before the epic block party, the San Pedro Lobster Crawl is keeping everyone quite entertained. The crawl continued on Wednesday, June 22nd with the day event at the Belize Chocolate Company. Those wanting to get their Lobster Fest Passports stamped needed only to answer a few Spiny Lobster related questions. Of course the lobster shaped chocolate for full marks was a tasty surprise! As the sun went down, it was time to head to the popular Pedro’s Bar and Pizzeria, where it wasn’t just another night of partying, but also of feasting. For only $25, you could eat all the pizza you wanted!

San Pedro Police address island business sector on liquor related issues
In an effort to enhance the relationship and cooperation between the San Pedro Police Department (SPPD) and the business community, the SPPD held a public meeting on Monday, June 20th at the San Pedro Lions Den. Various members of the business sector holding liquor licenses were invited to participate in discussing issues affecting the island. Deputy of the Belize Police Department Coastal Executive Unit Henry Jemmott welcomed everyone to the meeting, quickly outlining some of the grave issues that have been increasing on the island. “We have an issue with youth between the ages of 14 to 17 who are seen late at night trying to get inside establishments to purchase liquor,” said Jemmott. “As a moral fact, we should not sell to or tolerate them around the business area.” He stated that it is a serious problem on the island as young people are heading into the drinking habit. He also highlighted the use of drugs at different schools. The SPPD has engaged in setting up mechanisms to tackle this problem at the schools. One of the main ways how police are addressing the issue is by hosting educational sessions on drugs, and by conducting random searches.

Daniel the manatee visits Ambergris Caye
A Antillean Manatee from Mexico has been spotted around the waters near Ambergris Caye. The manatee, named Daniel, was raised in Laguna Guerrero, Chetumal Bay in the Mexican State of Quintana Roo as a rehab manatee since 2003, when he was found as an abandoned new born. Daniel, who is now trying out freedom, has been under surveillance by ECOSUR (Colegio de la Frontera Sur) Environmental Research Centre in the Chetumal area via a satellite tag. In his journey to Belize, Daniel made it to a ranch just west of Ambergris Caye, where he mingled with some children. He is very friendly, which according to Jamal A. Galves, – Manateeman, is not good, as hopes are for Daniel to join the wild population. “We are working to keep him as safe as possible. He is very friendly – a little too friendly – and needs to learn to be wild. If you live in the Ambergris Caye/Corozal Bay area, or any other area and see him or any other manatee, please give him his space. Please don’t approach him, don’t touch him, don’t play with him,” said Galvez. According to him, his tendency to approach people will put him in danger if he doesn’t learn to be more cautious, and interacting with him is not going to help him be successful in the wild.

Ambergris Stadium in its final stage of completion
Hector Alamilla, Councilor at the San Pedro Town Council (SPTC), states that the time frame for the project has been on schedule. “The stadium is coming along well, and is arranged to be handed over to the municipality in September. Both Mayor Daniel Guerrero and I are pleased with the progress of the stadium, and look forward to hosting the finest games in San Pedro,” said Alamilla. However, with any new development, the SPTC has seen its fair share of criticism. There have been complaints about the usage of synthetic grass over natural grass. According to Alamilla, the synthetic grass is something the SPTC studied keenly. In the past, the SPTC has used natural grass, but it did not last, so the field was filled with sand instead. He also notes that salt air is a serious issue in San Pedro, and it kills grass if it is not properly maintained.

September Celebrations 2016 Theme announced
There’s no doubt that Belize’s independence is the biggest celebration of the year, and with September fast approaching, the first news regarding the festivities has been announced. On Thursday, June 16th, after careful deliberation by the National Celebrations Commission, “Sovereign and Strong- Together as one” was selected as the official theme for 2016. The theme was submitted by Argelia Mendoza Ken, a teacher and counselor at the Belize High School of Agriculture in the Orange Walk District.

Belizean athletes excel in Central American sporting tournament
Belizean athletes shone at the 17th Central American Seniors Championships in Athletics held from Friday, June 17th through Sunday, June 19th in San Salvador, El Salvador. The delegation of Belizean athletes captured 12 medals – six gold, four silver and two bronze. They returned to Belize with pride on Monday, June 20th accompanied by officials of the Belize Athletic Association (BAA). Deon Sutherland, president of the BAA spoke about the outstanding performance of the Belizean athletes. “Of the thirteen new records set at this event, Belize captured six. We now hold an impressive seven Central American records,” said an excited Sutherland. According to him this is an annual championship which they use as a platform to qualify for other games they participate in throughout the year.

Inspiration Center Fundraiser raises over $100K
Wearing their finest all-white ensembles, guests made their way to the Great House at Mahogany Bay Village, Curio Collection by Hilton, where a night of fundraising for the Inspiration Center took place. Despite a call for rain, the Saturday, June 18th night was clear and perfect, just right for a night of honoring some of Belize’s most vulnerable, our children. Funds are needed to sustain the outpatient rehabilitation center in Belize City, which aids children with disabilities from all over the country, including Ambergris Caye.

Ambergris Today

Celebrity Spotting: Belizean Olympic Athlete Katy Sealy Relaxes in San Pedro, Belize
Track and Field athletes Katy Sealy and Brandon Jones will represent Belize at the Olympics 2016 in Rio, but before she commences her disciplinary routine of preparing for the Olympics, Katy is taking some time to relax in San Pedro, Ambergris Caye. She was spotted at El Fogon Restaurant enjoying a great dinner. Heptathlon athlete Katy Sealy competed along with 21 Belizean athletes over the weekend at the 17th Central American Championships in El Salvador and their performance was exceptional. Of the seven participating Central American countries, Belize ranks fourth place, taking six gold medals (all record setting medals) four silver and two bronze.

Misc Belizean Sourcesmzz

A team of health personnel have been dispatched to Caye Caulker Village to carry out Vector Borne Diseases Interventions in relation to recent Zika positive cases.

Caye Caulker Bartender and Customer Service training
Notice: Caye Caulker Bartender and Customer Service by Belize Mixology training starts on June 29th at Roses Grill and Bar at 9 am. See more details below. Spaces are limited.

Cops Adopt a Park
ATM: Eastern Police Division South adopts the old Daker's Park on West Street, with the assistance & support from the Belize City Council, Pine Lumber, Brodie's, our Community Policing Officers & the residents!!

Power interruption 8:00am to 1:00pm, Sunday, June 26, Cayo
Entire down town area of San Ignacio Town, Branch Mouth, portion Joseph Andrews Drive, John Martinez St, Fourth St, and area along George Price Highway between Kontiki & Police Station including Martin Galvez Blvd, Buena Vista St, Boiton Area, Mosquitoville & Cahal Pech. BEL to replace poles and conduct line clearing in the area.

Cool T-shirts for a worthy cause
Sisoda partners with schools around the world by featuring artwork from incredible students on quality goods for sale. With each purchase, we help fund educational programs at chosen schools in need. The Andre collection supports the Isla Bonita Elementary School in Ambergris Caye, Belize by giving back 10% of our profits directly to the school. The drawing was done by Andre Eacosta - a student at the school.

BTIA 31st Biannual AGM
The Belize Tourism Industry Association is having their AGM on Wednesday, July 6th, at the George Price Centre, from 10:00am to noon. In the afternoon, Leah Chandler will have a seminar on strategic planning. "The Belize Tourism Industry Association will hold its 31st Bi-Annual General Meeting on July 6, 2016 in the City of Belmopan at the George Price Centre. All members are invited to attend this event... Main guest speaker will be Ms. Leah Leah Chandler, Chief Marketing Officer from Branson, Missouri. The highlight of her speech will be geared on the importance of Strategic Planning for Destination Success."

Chiquibul Forest Outreach Campaign
The Beauty of the Chiquibul Forest Outreach Campaign has reached its project end. A total of 28 communities, 44 schools, 250 teachers and 6,246 students benefited from the educational presentation throughout the Cayo District. FCD is grateful to PACT, Principals, teachers, students and the Ministry of Education for their support.

Succotz Archaeology and Culture Fair
SundayJune 26 at the Succotz R.C. School.

Channel 7

SSB Will Buy 55 Million Dollars of BEL and BTL Shares
The Board of Directors of the Social Security Board has approved the purchase of Government's shares in BEL and BTL, subject to the final negotiations with the Government of Belize. As we told you, the SSB Investment committee recommended that SSB purchase 40 million dollars worth of BEL's shares and 15 million dollars in BTL shares. The board met this afternoon, and after reviewing the investment committee's reasons on why this is a sound investment, there was unanimous support for the investment, including the representatives from the social partners. This evening, the chairman of the Board of Directors, Doug Singh, told us why the board looked favorably at the proposal. He told us that the monies that will be invested in these shares are sitting in the bank and are growing at only a 2% rate of return, so 6 to 10% that the utilities have historically been making is a far more attractive opportunity:

US Embassy Hoists Gay Flag Over Belize
There was a flag raising ceremony this morning at the US Embassy in Belmopan, but it wasn't the US or Belizean flag that was hoisted: it was the rainbow flag that represents the LGBT movement. Now although it was done on the embassy grounds, which is considered American soil, it is the first time that this flag has been flown beneath Belize's skies at an official event, and for some residents, it wasn't a welcomed sight. Today when we traveled to Belmopan we got to see the divisive effect of the ceremony. Now, we warn you, this story features images of men kissing, and if you don't like that kind of stuff, you might want to channel surf for the first few seconds. Here's the story from Courtney Weatherburne: Courtney Weatherburne reporting: For this couple, kissing and being affectionate to one another in public is natural, but in homophobic society like Belize, it's openly rejected and condemned. But that is just at the surface. That denouncement is a representation of a much larger social and cultural battle on human rights, one the LGBT community has long been advocating for, and today their struggle was acknowledged with a symbolic raising of the rainbow flag at the US Embassy. US President Barack Obama declared the month of June LGBT Pride month and this ceremony was part of the commemoration. The Belizean LGBT rights supporters celebrated in this occasion.

Gay Rights Case Judgment Soon
So as you heard, the main point brought out at the ceremony was the anticipated outcome to the Section 53 challenge. Now in this case, both sides: the LGBT and religious communities believe they have the upper hand. But they surely disagree with the effects of the final decision. On one hand Caleb says the outcome won't have a polarizing effect on the community while the religious leaders say it definitely will. Here are both sides. Lisa Shoman, Advocate: "Any legal decision is only one component. I think there is a cultural shift and the groups that Caleb mentioned that have been growing and getting support, demonstrate that polarization is only one face, the other face is unification and that is absolutely happening."

Crawford For Leslie Shooting
Last night, we showed you our interview with police on the Monday night shooting of 40 year-old Anthony Leslie on Iguana Street Extension. Police told us that they intended to charge 33 year-old Anthony Crawford for that incident, and tonight he is at the Belize Central Prison. Leslie was on Iguana Street Extension at around 7 on Monday night. He was allegedly approached by Crawford and another man who tried to convince him to commit a crime. When Leslie refused, Crawford allegedly shot him in the chest and fled the scene. Today, Crawford was arraigned before Magistrate Carlon Mendoza on the charges of attempted murder, use of deadly means of harm, dangerous harm and possession of 3.6 grams of marijuana. He pleaded not guilty to all the charges except the possession of controlled drugs. For that plea, he was sentenced to spend 1 month in prison, which will run concurrent to another month that he has to spend for defaulting on a 100-dollar fine which he was to have paid since last year.

Kaina Got The Cold Shoulder
Yesterday the Belize Athletic Association named the two athletes who will be representing Belize at the Rio Olympics. They are Katy Sealey and Brandon Jones. Perennial favorite Kaina Martinez was not chosen - even after she had just represented Belize at the Central American Games the week before. Last night on the Lik Road TV Show, BAA Vice President Jaheed Smith explained why:... Jaheed Smith, BAA Vice President: "In terms of Kaina and Katy, they were both neck to neck in the events. However, the problems lies because the Olympic Committee sends out information for the athletes to follow up. When Miss Martinez got her information, she did not respond back in time. These things have deadlines and she did not respond in time. So, there is an uproar about why we didn't send her or why we selected.. But the thing is we can't select her if she did not send in her proper paper work. We can't force Rio to put her in. So, it's not a matter of who was.... the dispute is who was closer to qualifying in the event and granted yes, Miss Martinez may have been closer to qualifying, but even if she had qualified and not sending her paperwork, we can't send her. That's the deciding factor right there."

Gender Politics Invades Youth Advocacy Movement
In a press release issued this morning, the Youth Advocacy Movement, which is the youth arm of the BFLA, came out strong against one of the District presidents of the National Youth Council of Belize. The issue was a homophobic facebook post made earlier in week. Now before we get into the details of that post, the real issue that the Youth Advocacy Movement (YAM) addressed in their press release has to do with a decision made by the National Youth Council to have the word "gender" redacted from a clause in their constitution. This decision was made at their AGM last week. The release said that YAM is, "disappointed in the actions of elected members of the council." The omission of the word gender, according to YAM opens the doors for discrimination. We spoke to the President of YAM Belize who told us more about their stance. Emanuel Pech: "What are some of those real concerns that you guys have with the word gender now being extracted from their constitution?"

Ugly Meme Sparks Outrage Against Youth Leader
Now going back to the matter that triggered this whole thing in the first place. The Stann Creek president of the National Youth Council, Jamal Swaso had posted a homophobic meme on facebook a couple of days ago. Now according to Swaso, it was in no way referring to LGBT community. The issue picked up quite a bit of traction when it was reposted by UNIBAM president Caleb Orosco. District president Swaso did apologize in a subsequent post, but by then the damage had been done, according to Youth Advocacy Movement. Leandra Betson - Pres. YAM Belize City: "We understand that in the leadership position that we don't only represent ourselves, but we present a group of people and we are grateful that Mr. Swazo owned up to his mistake, but we are also kind of dissatisfied of shaky in the way that we expected better because we expected that based on the constitution and the makeup of it that he would re-think and not only - even though it was his opinion when you are in the leadership position, your opinion, you have to kind of put that aside for the betterment of everybody, because maybe somebody else took it in offense."

Debating A Divisive Matter
In about half an hour, the Social Security Board debate on the Belize Guatemala Territorial Dispute will start at the Bliss Center. SSB has put together a panel of experts on both sides of the issue, those who want to go to the ICJ, and those who think it's a bad idea. Those in favour include Ambassadors Lisa Shoman and Jim Murphy, and History teacher Gian Vasquez. Those against include Dickie Bradley, Fred Hunter, and Paul Morgan. The Debate starts at 8:00 and this afternoon, SSB Chairman Doug Singh told us why they want to inform the wider national debate on this divisive issue: Doug Singh, Chair. Board of Directors, SSB: "As a result of the incidents that have happened on the border and the ramping of the dialogue on this whole territorial question and the ICJ, we felt obligated to do what we can to help provide information to the public. There was no better way that to actually bring the parties who we're actually advocating for and advocated against the ICJ to come and present their case to the public. So we're having an open forum at the Bliss Institute tonight and it will be on television nationally and also on the radio nationally."

Prisoners Performed on PSE
6 days ago, we showed you the best and brightest primary school students who got the top marks in this year's PSE. But, while the exam is designed for Standard 6 students, there were a number of inmates from the Belize Central Prison who also took the test and passed with excellent grades. IT'S part of the Prison's rehabilitation policy, and on Tuesday, those inmates who passed were honored in their own ceremony. Here's Norman Wallacey, the former Principal for the Belmopan Baptist High school, who now the head of the Prison's Education and Rehab Department, explaining why Kolbe is excited for these inmates: Norman Willacey - Dir. Edu. & Rehab. Kolbe Fdn. Prison: "The program we run here is geared towards helping inmates, to one; recognize that there's a need for a change. Something went wrong in his life, with some decisions making and that person is here. So, we recognize that need and we have implemented programs to help to meet that particular need in inmates' life."

Police Aren't Playing with Park Initiative
Community policing - it's about more than just community meet and greet sessions, and to put work behind their words, today, South Side Commander ACP Chester Williams teamed up with a youth group from Mesopotamia and other corporate sponsors, to renovate Daker's Park on West Street. This is a community based initiative to give kids, in less priveliged communities something positive to do. The park was inaugurated at a brief ceremony this morning. The park which had previously been in extremely deplorable conditions received a brand new set of swings, a couple of see-saws, some picnic benches and a brand new fence. The total cost of works at the park are estimated at about 6 thousand dollars. Corporate sponsors that assisted in this project include Pine Lumber Limited, Bulridge, Port of Belize, Brodies, Habet and Habet, and Cisco Construction.

Cops On the Albert
Yesterday, police were in the same general area conducting their weekly meet and greet session. We found the south side commander on Albert Street along with some of his officers meeting the local business community and taking note of their concerns. The meet and greet session went from East Canal to Cemetery lane.

Trinity Gets Upgrade
Today, the Social Investment Fund formally handed over newly renovated bathrooms to the Trinity Methodist Primary School. Now, receiving new restrooms might not seem like that big a deal but to the students, faculty and staff of Trinity, it is a very welcomed and long overdue upgrade. Here's the Principal expressing their gratitude at today's inauguration ceremony: The project cost just under $60,000 Belize dollars and was funded under the Commonwealth Development Initiative.

Channel 5

A Rainbow Flag Flies Over U.S. Embassy in Belmopan
An event took place in Belmopan today that is causing chatter and drawing controversy in some quarters. The Rainbow Flag, which is the recognized symbol of gay pride, was hoisted [...]

Evangelical Church Reacts to Observation of Gay Pride Month
While members of the church did not gather en masse at the gates of the U.S. Embassy this morning, the leadership of the National Evangelical Association of Belize was present [...]

S.S.B. Chairman Discusses Proposed Purchase of G.O.B.’s Utility Shares
On Tuesday, News Five broke the story of what has every appearance of being a bailout of G.O.B. by S.S.B. at the Prime Minister’s request. If indeed it is a [...]

S.S.B. Tentatively Green lights Acquisition of Government’s Shares
News Five has learned that at Tuesday’s meeting Financial Secretary Joseph Waight was called into the meeting of the Investment Committee to provide some clarity on share value. There was [...]

Doug Singh Says It’s a Low-risk Investment with High Returns
The People’s United Party has condemned the transaction, claiming that G.O.B. is raiding the S.S.B. piggy bank because it is broke and needs a cash fix. In an extended interview [...]

Leader of Opposition Says Immediate Government Action in Sarstoon is Critical
Following talks in Washington between Belize and Guatemala on Tuesday, there’s been no clear sense that progress has really been made in resolving the conflict in the Sarstoon. Certainly there [...]

P.U.P. Leadership is Hopeful that Guatemalan Discussions will be Treated Seriously
Last week the P.U.P. announced that it would be withdrawing its representative from the talks with Guatemala. That move is designed to send a clear message that the P.U.P. believes [...]

John Briceño Says Barrow Administration is Broke
As we showed you in our newscast, G.O.B. has orchestrated a hurried divesting of shares to raise cash and the Opposition seized on it to reiterate that the Barrow administration [...]

Dark Days Ahead, Are They Foretold in Dismal IMF Report?
And of course there is the IMF report which was less that complimentary in reference to the status of the economy and G.O.B.’s performance. Briceño says he takes no pleasure [...]

B.E.L. Holds its Annual General Meeting
Earlier we told you that the S.S.B. Board has approved the purchase of shares in B.E.L.  The utility company held its annual general meeting on Wednesday night and is reporting [...]

A Judgment in Section Fifty-three Challenge is Nigh
Gay rights activist Caleb Orozco and members of the local LGBT community are eagerly anticipating a decision from the Supreme Court on a constitutional challenge to strikeout Section Fifty-three of [...]

Caleb Reflects on Road Less Traveled
Caleb Orozco, Executive Director of UNIBAM, is at the forefront of the LGBT movement in Belize. He has been long anticipating the court ruling and today he spoke of the [...]

Anthony Crawford Busted with Weed, Fingered as Suspect in Monday Night Shooting
An attempted murder suspect who was fingered as one of two shooters in Monday night’s shooting in the city is tonight behind bars serving a one month prison term. Anthony Crawford was busted [...]

John Briceño on Village Council Elections
Village Council elections are going into their fourth week, but strangely enough there’s been no real hype. Normally, by this time, both major political parties would have been claiming overwhelming [...]

But Briceño’s Take on LGBT Issues?
The Rainbow Flag has been hoisted at the U.S. Embassy in Belmopan and responses have been flooding in. Members of the LGBT community and supporters claim that it is a [...]

Police Department Rehabilitates Daker’s Park
With assistance from various business houses, the police department stepped up to the plate big time. An abandoned playground in Mesopotamia got a facelift and was inaugurated today as the [...]

Chamber of Commerce Hosts HIV Testing
Over the last five years, Belize has participated in the Caribbean Regional Testing Day initiative led by the Pan Caribbean partnership against HIV/AIDS, PANCAP. And on Friday, the country joins [...]

NCFC Tackles Amendments to Legislation
A media sensitization workshop will be held on Saturday at the ITVET Compound in Belize City. It will focus on the recent amendments to three pieces of legislation: the Criminal [...]

Dwight Cadle is IBA Certified Boxing Coach
The first qualified, Belizean boxing coach since the International Boxing Association began a recertification exercise in 2013 is Dwight Cadle Junior.  He has been hitting the books and the punching [...]


GOB Receives Grants And Testing Equipment
The Global Fund which was founded in January of the year 2002 is an international financing organization that is aimed at disbursing resources in order to prevent and treat HIV and AIDS, tuberculosis and malaria. The Global Fund has approved a sum of 22.9 billion USD that supports about 1,000 programs in 151 different countries. The United Nations Development Programme in Belize (UNDP) has received a grant of $3.4 million USD with the purpose of working towards the preventing and alleviating HIV/AIDS and Tuberculosis (TB) for the years 2016 to 2018. This is the very first grant in which measures will be taken to mitigate all forms of TB and TB-HIV co-infections in major populations.

Premium And Kerosene Increases
The cost of domestic fuel has seen an increase in both V-power and kerosene which came into effect only two days ago. The new cost of price for V-power saw an increase of fifty three cents which went from nine dollars and ninety five cents to ten dollars and forty eight cents, while the price for kerosene went from four dollars and ninety two cents to a total of five dollars and twenty two cents increasing by thirty cents. The cost for regular fuel remains at a total of nine dollars and seventy six cents while the cost in price for diesel remains at eight dollars and seventy six cents. The last time we reported on an escalation of fuel values, was in the month of May.

Plans Underway To Safe Guard Belizeans
A couple weeks ago Mexico held their municipal elections in about 12 states, the opposition party, National Action Party, or PAN took most of the 12 seats forming the New Mexican Government. A report in the Mexican news ‘El Peninsular” indicates that Belizean authorities are confident that the new government can iron out differences, and address the security issues that have recently been affecting Belizeans who visit the southern part of Quintana Roo. This comes after the recent wave of extortions and robberies that have targeted Belizeans visiting the Chetumal, Mahahual and Bacalar at the hands of taxi drivers and hotel employees. According to the report, in an effort to minimize such activities the new administration has held several meetings with the leadership of the Association of hotels and with the heads of the Ministry of Public Security in order to seek a proper solution for the problem.

Female Taxi Driver Attached By Passengers
Gloria Alvarez, a naturalized Belizean taxi driver residing here in Orange Walk Town is lucky to be alive tonight after she was assaulted on Friday night by two individuals. According to official police reports, Alvarez was chartered by a well-known friend by the name of Alma Hernandez who was accompanied by a male individual of East Indian descent. Reports suggest that Hernandez asked Alvarez to take them to Yo Creek Village and whilst on their way there, Alvarez was ordered to stop the vehicle somewhere on the Yo Creek road where Hernandez’s partner pulled out a screw driver and placed it on Alvarez’s neck. She was then ordered to give up her car keys and was told that if she didn’t follow instructions, she would be killed.


Police Unaware of the Muslim Raid
Three days ago it was reported that a Muslim family in Belize was detained by the Special Branch Unit and taken to the Raccoon Street Police Station. The family alleges that their detention was on basis of religious discrimination. Their holy items, such as their holy book, the Quran was also taken along with them. […]

Crawford Goes to Jail for Weed and Remanded for Attempted Murder
Thirty-three year old Anthony Crawford, an unemployed of Antelope Street Extension, was charged with attempted murder when he appeared today before Magistrate Carlon Mendoza. Crawford was also charged with dangerous harm, use of deadly means of harm and possession of three point six grams of cannabis. He pled guilty to possession and he was sentenced […]

Disciplinary Problems Faced In Schools
In 2011, Minister of Education Patrick Faber had announced the abolishment of corporal punishment in the schools and that the teachers and principals would have to come up with other alternatives for disciplining the students. PATRICK FABER (April 1, 2011) ” On June 24, 2013, President of the Belize National Teachers Union, Luke Palacio had […]

Re: Today's Belize News: June 24, 2016 [Re: Marty] #515426
06/24/16 05:31 AM
06/24/16 05:31 AM
Joined: Oct 1999
Posts: 80,387
oregon, spr
Marty Offline OP

Marty  Offline OP


FM responds to leaked diplomatic letter from Guatemala
On May 28th, 2016 the Guatemalan Ambassador to Belize wrote the Government of Belize a letter refuting and expressing consternation, in diplomatic language, about the May 24th Cabinet release referring to untrammelled access to the Sarstoon. We had been told that the Guatemalans informally agreed ...

PUP frowns on SSB “utility share dump”
Opposition Leader John Briceño has described the Government as “being on crack” and desperate for money, such that it has approached the Social Security Board to buy $55 million worth of BTL and BEL shares. Yesterday SSB chairman Douglas Singh, speaking to another media house, cited the ...

Bumper and license plate left behind by car which fled accident scene
There was a small accident in Belmopan this afternoon involving a Ministry of Education vehicle. The grey Mahindra was carrying examination papers from Dangriga town, headed to Belize City. While on the Hummingbird Highway, just in front of La Cabana Bar , a white car was in front of the Ministry of...

Labor investigating case of resigned Northern Regional Manager
Yesterday we brought you comments made by the Minister of Labor, Hon. Hugo Patt following a Labor workshop held in Belize City. One topic of interest that was brought up by the media was the issue of the recent resignation of the Northern Regional Manager, Audibaldo Monima Junior , a close affiliate...

Fuel price at the pump increases significantly
We have told you about the IMF report that suggests that Government of Belize will most likely need to increase taxes and execute retrenchment programs to try and alleviate the financial difficulties it is facing. We don’t know if it was a tax increase that caused a steep increase in the cost of fue...

P.S.E. passing inmates honored
Seven inmates of the Kolbe Foundation were honored on Tuesday afternoon at the Central Prison in Hattieville. The short ceremony was to celebrate and acknowledge their accomplishments in passing the 2016 Primary school examinations. While primary school students sat the exams at various schools acro...

BEL to Hold Annual General Meeting
Belize Electricity Limited (BEL) will hold its Annual General Meeting of Shareholders later today, to announce the results of the Company’s 2015 performance. In 2015, BEL achieved net earnings of $29.4 million, resulting in dividend payments, similar to the previous year, of $0.15 per share. Follow...

The Guardian

Belmopan floats a bond - More streets to be paved, more drains constructed!
The Belmopan City Council will be floating a 6.5 million dollar bond in order to service one third of the city’s infrastructural needs at this point in time. Mayor of Belmopan, Khalid Belisle told the Guardian that it is estimated that it would take a BZ $20 million capital investment to pave all areas of the capital city and install proper drainage. Feasibility studies however have determined that a BZ $6.5 million Municipal Bond offering was financially feasible for the city to pursue. This investment will cover roughly one-third of the current needs of the city. On Wednesday, signing took place with key players of the bond offering after cabinet approved the $6.5M offering. Currently legislation is being drafted for passage in the House of Representatives and Senate.

Negotiations begin between Belize and Guatemala over the Sarstoon
On Wednesday June 22, the Organization of American States issued a press release in which it states: "The delegations of Belize and Guatemala, headed by their respective Foreign Ministers, met Tuesday at the headquarters of the Organization of American States (OAS) in Washington, DC with Secretary General Luis Almagro to begin to negotiate the terms of a cooperation mechanism for the Sarstoon River, as had been agreed by the Parties in Istanbul, Turkey, where they met within the framework of the World Humanitarian Summit May 23-24, 2016. In this regard, the General Secretariat of the OAS is pleased to inform that good progress was made during the meeting, which concentrated on the development of best practices for the de-escalation of tensions in the Sarstoon River.

Third round of Village council elections, UDP continues to dominate
Elections for village councils continued on Sunday June 19 and the work of the UDP continues to be appreciated with villages that have never gone UDP now doing so. Key villages across the country, including Hopkins and Palmar now have UDP representation. These villages in the past have never gone UDP but now they boast UDP chairmen and 6 councilors. They join 24 other villages which chose to go UDP as well Among those villages is Xaibe which has also had a tradition of voting for PUP and now for the second consecutive time has gone UDP. Silk Grass which also was a traditional PUP village has also gone to the UDP with the chairman and the majority of councilors being UDP. In total there are 24 villages voted for the UDP in the last round of elections where there were 35 which were contested.

Kenneth Dobson accused of attacking a woman
Former murder suspect, Kenneth Jermaine Dobson, 32, is in trouble again after he appeared in court for allegedly attacking a 21-year-old woman. Allegations made by Shantay Gabourel are that at about 10 a.m. on Saturday, June 18, she was at home and four young men whom she knows well were at her house. She knows the men by their nicknames: Zeek, Ghost, Peggy and Fudgie. Fudgie is Kenneth Dobson. He got into a fight with Peggy and Gabourel tried to intervene. That was when Dobson punched her in the face twice and left the yard. He then returned for a bicycle but Gabourel tried to stop him from taking it. He pushed her into some zinc and as a result she sustained a cut wound to her hip. She then grabbed a crowbar and tried to hit him with it but missed. Dobson then pulled out a knife and attempted to stab her but missed. The two were separated and the altercation came to an end.

Teenager shoots cop during execution attempt
A 15 year-old gunman, identified to us as Julian Tun, has been arrested and criminally charged with a number of offences including attempted murder of a police officer. On Friday, June 17, he was caught fleeing from a shootout after he shot the cop and tried to kill a suspected member of the George Street Gang, right in front of the Queen Street Police Station. The young man is a minor, which normally affords him the privilege from anyone in the media publishing his photograph. But, in this particular instance, The Guardian believes that it is in the interest of public good, for readers to see the person brazen enough to behave like a hired hitman.

BDF Volunteer soldier caught with drugs
At around 10:00 am on Thursday of last week, San Ignacio Police executed a search warrant at the residence of Anthony Goff in Esperanza Village, which led to the discovery of drugs. A search of a pink and black Airliner school bag in the bedroom led to the discovery of three plastic bags, which contained green vegetable substance suspected to be cannabis. Police showed the contents to Anthony Goff and he was placed under arrest for "Possession of Controlled Drugs with intent to supply". The 31 year old was thereafter cautioned and informed of his constitutional rights and then escorted to the San Ignacio Police Station along with the suspected drugs.

Cassian Young on remand for robbery charge
Mosul Street resident Cassian Young, 27, is on remand at the Belize Central Prison for the robbery of Kareem Yasin Hafiya. Young was remanded despite a strong fight from his attorney, Herbert Panton, who says there is no chance that the facts provided by police can convict his client of the charge. Young allegedly robbed Hafiya, a security guard of Eve Street, on Saturday, June 11. Hafiya reported to police that he was walking on Regent Street West when he was approached by two men. One man walked up to him and the other ambushed him from the back. They held him down on the ground and took away his cellphone and wallet containing bank cards, identification cards and $2,850 cash. The men then ran away from the scene.

Cop arrested after preventing bar brawl
Police Constable Urbie Alamilla has been arrested and charged for discharging a firearm in public. However, one week after he was the face of public resentment, Alamilla is now the subject of public sympathy. According to police reports, they responded to a shot fired at Green Jade Restaurant in Ladyville at about 10:52 p.m. on Saturday, June 18. Upon their arrival, officers observed a 9 mm expended shell on the floor of the restaurant. They were approached by Sharmaine Bainton who informed them that PC Alamilla was drunk and just fired his firearm inside the restaurant. Police say they were also met by Ashley Haylock of Burrell Boom Village who informed them that he had an altercation with a fellow he knows as “Borland” and Alamilla withdrew a gun, fired a shot towards the floor and left the establishment. The following day, Sunday, June 19, a police officer lifted both the expended shell and the round off the ground and secured it. Urbie Alamilla was then arrested and charged.

Gary Sewell’s appeal case set for October
The extradition hearing appeal case of Gary Gordon Seawell came up on Wednesday, June 22, in the Court of Appeal before President Justice Manuel Sosa, Justice Ducille Murrillo and Justice Minnette Hafiz Bertram. The Office of the Solicitor General was represented by Counsel Triennia Young and Agassi Finnegan, while Sewell was represented by attorney Anthony Sylvester. Both sides agreed to put off Sewell’s case to the October session and the Court accepted the application. The court also dealt with case management for an application made by the Government to introduce new evidence. The Court then gave their directions to both parties that they are to submit their written submissions to the court in 21 days of each other and the matter was set for its next hearing in October of this year.

Mark Shepherd, a 23 year-old Hattieville Resident was gunned down in front of his pregnant girlfriend on Saturday, June 18, right on the premises of the Green Iguana Lounge Club. Shepherd, who was also known as “Shubble” (the Kriol word for shovel) was, from all appearances, a law abiding citizen. He unfortunately passed away from the injuries he suffered. According to his family, he came home that day from work, ate his supper and told his grandmother that he was going to the club, which is located right in the village. He took his pregnant girlfriend with him for the evening to socialize. According to reports, he was in the process lighting a cigarette, when 2 gunmen walked into the yard of the business place, and fired at him. He was injured in the back, and this lung was punctured. His girlfriend, who was reportedly returning from the bathroom, saw when the shooters attacked, and she was forced to flee.

Southie shot and killed in his yard
Another Belize City family is in mourning after a gunman went to the Kraal Road home of 33 year-old Edison Williams and shot him inside his own yard. The tragedy happened sometime around 8:30 p.m. on Friday, June 17. Williams was relaxing alone, and his wife and daughter were in another part of their yard. While Williams had his guard down, a gunman came up a nearby alley, shot him several times and disappeared back into the night. His family, which was nearby, heard the gunshots, and when they realized that he was the victim, immediately made arrangements to rush him to the hospital. The doctors at the KHMH tried their very best to save his life, but at around 5 a.m. on Saturday, June 18, he succumbed to his injuries.

Leniency for arson convict, Alden Sutherland
Justice Traodio John Gonzalez exercised extreme leniency upon recovering drug addict, Alden Denver Sutherland, 41, who pleaded guilty on Wednesday, June 22, to setting Hector Choj’s $60,000 vehicle on fire in September of 2014. Choj, Manager of JEC, was the victim of arson when his $60,000 grey 2008 Toyota Tacoma was set on fire on Sunday, September 14, 2014. In a report to police, Choj said he parked his vehicle on Saturday, September 13, around 8:30 a.m. in front of his apartment on Youth for the Future Drive. At about 2 a.m. on Sunday, September 14, he was informed by a security guard from the JEC Company that his vehicle was on fire. By the time Choj rushed downstairs to check the security guard had already out the fire. Destroyed was a grey fiberglass wheel valued at $1,183, a Hankook tire valued at $581 and a bed liner which was in the pan of the truck valued at $2,126.21.

Keyren Tzib to stand trial for shooting colleague
Keyren Tzib, 25, will have to stand trial at the Supreme Court for the attempted murder of colleague Kurt Hyde who she allegedly shot on Easter Monday, April 6, 2015 at the end of a joint maritime operation of Belizean armed forces. At a preliminary inquiry on Thursday, June 16, the prosecutor in the case, Inspector Egbert Castillo, submitted as many as 26 statements from witnesses; including the main witness Kurt Hyde. Castillo also submitted 15 documentary evidence; including, a report from the firearm examiner, Orlando Vera; two chain of custody forms; a medico legal report on Hyde; an operations order for the Belize Coastguard dated August, 2014; a copy of a medical service dispenser for Tzib; “wet ground safety rules” and a coastguard stand down sheet for weapons utilized by officers that day upon others. Tzib’s attorney, Darrell Bradley, chose not to challenge any of the prosecution’s evidence.

Darren Levi Gillett to stand trial for attempted murder of police officer
Police Constable Justin Melvin Hall was fixing a flat tire on the street side on Monday, June 29, 2015, when he was attacked and robbed. The man police believe was his attacker is 29-year-old Darren Levi Gillett. Gillett was arrested two days after the incident and arraigned for attempted murder, use of deadly means of harm and robbery. A preliminary inquiry was conducted in front of Chief Magistrate Anne Marie Smith on Thursday, June 16, almost a year after the incident. Prosecutor in the case, Inspector Egbert Castillo, submitted as many as ten statements and seven documentary exhibits in the case against Gillett. Allegations are that Gillett took an LG cellphone and a wallet containing $400 cash and a number of identification cards. He managed to gain an advantage over Hall by hitting him with a gas tank.

Hondurans caught in Belize illegally
Life in Belize was short lived for two Honduran cousins who were caught in the city shortly after entering the country illegally on Friday, June 17. Jairo Jose Rodriguez Flores, 25, and Johel Antonio Villalta Rodriguez, 31, were caught by Immigration officials on Cemetery Road at about 2:30 p.m. on Friday. The men had just exited a bus that came from Benque Viejo when Immigration Officer Robert Guernsey intercepted them and requested that they present their travel documents. The men were unable to do so and as a result they were detained pending investigation. In an interview with Immigration officials, the cousins said they came to Belize to seek employment and they entered the country illegally through the Mopan River.

No case against men charged for murder
Ronlee Petillo, 28, and Matthew Smith, 23, are free men after their murder trial ended on Friday, June 17, with a successful no case submission by attorneys Leroy Banner and Anthony Sylvester. The men have been on remand for the murder of fruit vendor Miguel Angel Rivera, 57, which occurred on March 11, 2011 at the Michael Finnegan Market. At around 9 p.m. on Friday, March 11, three men on bicycles rode up on Miguel Rivera and shot him to the head. Rivera was eating fried chicken at his fruit stall on West Canal and was accompanied by a friend when the three men rode up on him. Without much exchange of words, one of the men pulled out a gun and fired a single shot which caught him in the head. He fell off a box on which he was seated and died on the spot. According to witnesses in the area, one of the men stood by and watched in Rivera’s direction while the other two men were seen circling the area on their bicycles. Four days after the shooting, police charged Petillo and Smith for Rivera’s murder.

Malcolm Nunez charged for basketball fight
Twenty-year-old Malcolm Nunez is out on bail after he was accused of breaking the jaw of Jonathan Samuels during an altercation on the Belama Basketball Court. Samuels reported to police that he was playing ball on Saturday, June 11, when an argument started and he was approached by Nunez who punched him twice in the face. Samuels had to visit the hospital where a doctor confirmed that his jaw was broken and classified injuries as grievous harm. Nunez was detained by police and arraigned before Magistrate Deborah Rogers. He was read a single charge of grievous harm upon Jonathan Samuels and pleaded not guilty. The court prosecutor, Sgt. Bonifacio Rash, had no objection to bail but asked the court to impose conditions. With that, Magistrate Rogers granted Nunez bail in the sum of $1,200 and ordered him to not interfere with the victim and stay 100 yards away.

Executed just after being released from police custody
Elroy Perdomo Jr., 20, another youth from the Belize City’s Southside, was murdered as a consequence of gang violence which played out during a funeral procession on Thursday, June 16. Perdomo, who was the main suspect in the murder of Marlon Bonner, was shot 16 times by two gunmen who stalked him in the funeral. Perdomo had been in police custody since the beginning of the week when investigators started their work to solve the murder of Bonner, which happened on Sunday, June 12. Police say that there were plenty of witnesses who saw the gunman when he pulled the trigger and killed Bonner, a father of 3 girls. No one was willing, however, to go on the record and point to Elroy Perdomo as the culprit for fear of retribution from those he may be affiliated with. So, after the required time, police was forced to release him from custody after the 48-hour detention period.

PACT embraces more responsibilities
The Protected Areas Conservation Trust is no longer an absentee financier for the conservation community of Belize. The organization which has acted simply as a piggy bank for the past twenty years will now be an active organization tasked with the responsibility of overseeing the management of protected areas to ensure that key objectives are met. Colin Young, Chairman of PACT Board of Directors, says, “PACT is 20 years old and has always just managed funding and granted those on a competitive basis to our partners. The PACT Amendment Act however has now changed fundamentally, both the role and functions PACT and as a result the institution must now change to meet the mandates of the new legislation.”

Belizean media propagating the Guatemalan agenda
The PUP operatives and political pundits who have tried to cloak themselves in the garb of journalists, have once again set their crosshairs on Foreign Affairs Minister Hon. Wilfred Sedi Elrington. This time they have accused him of lying to the nation about what took place at the Belize/Guatemala talks last month in Istanbul Turkey. One has gone as far as to try and suggest that Hon. Elrington should be removed from his post because of this suspected lie. While another has suggested that the Hon. Minister committed an act treason, he went as far as to explain what constitutes treason. Then there are two Talk show hosts one in Belmopan and another in Belize City who have joined the fray to condemn Sedi. There are also the regular talk show serial callers, but we will not give any ink and paper to them as they are only set up callers. They are used to keep the conversation going during the talk shows. Neither will we pay any attention to the PUP’s official media outlets because they are just doing what they were mandated to do, OPPOSE!

Belmopan Police continues with gang resistance program
Some 29 students from St. Michael’s Roman Catholic Primary School in Las Flores, Belmopan, graduated last Friday evening after completing a Gang Resistance Education and Training (GREAT) program. These students have learnt new skills to resist gangs and other criminal activities. Officer Commanding of Belmopan Police Howell Gillett was present for the GREAT graduation where he implored on the students to teach their new skills and behaviors to a friend, brother, a sister or a neighbor. “It feels great to know 26 new people in our communities [are now there] to help us dissuade other from wrong doings,” writes Howell Gillett.

Meet and Greet continues in Cayo
Police in the Cayo District continues with their meet and greet with the public. Between the hours of 4:00pm and 5:30 pm last Friday, Officer Commanding San Ignacio Police Formation Superintendent Anthony Rosado and Deputy Officer in Charge Daniel Iche along with members of San Ignacio COPP Team, conducted a Meet and Greet with Bullet Tree Village residents. The purpose of this program is for Police Officers to conduct outreach to the community; listening to issues and their concerns. Residents from Bullet Tree Falls expressed concerns that there was public drinking and bottles being broken in the streets. They also shared with police their concern that youths were also smoking drugs on the streets. As a result the residents requested for more mobile and foot patrols during the night and especially on weekends. A community member also made recommendations that police officers be trained in public relations and to work on responding and giving feedback to the community.

PUP can’t decide who their representative should be on the Guatemalan negotiations
Perhaps all across the world there is a childhood practice of playing a ball game with your friends, where the ball belongs to one of you. If the game doesn’t go your way, you might get upset and leave, taking your ball with you, ending the game for everyone. That is the equivalent of what the PUP did last week when they withdrew from the Belize/ Guatemala relations team. They did so over what perhaps they figured was a snub , when they were not taken on a trip to the Dominican Republic. Belize and Guatemala were going to piggyback on this meeting that both counties would be attending as members of the OAS. The Foreign Ministers of both countries would have used that face to face to try and work on the Sarstoon Protocol, the representative of the Leader of Opposition would have been present for the negotiations between the two Foreign Ministers ,but would not have been a part of the OAS meeting on the trip.

PUP can’t decide who their representative should be on the Guatemalan negotiations
Perhaps all across the world there is a childhood practice of playing a ball game with your friends, where the ball belongs to one of you. If the game doesn’t go your way, you might get upset and leave, taking your ball with you, ending the game for everyone. That is the equivalent of what the PUP did last week when they withdrew from the Belize/ Guatemala relations team. They did so over what perhaps they figured was a snub , when they were not taken on a trip to the Dominican Republic. Belize and Guatemala were going to piggyback on this meeting that both counties would be attending as members of the OAS. The Foreign Ministers of both countries would have used that face to face to try and work on the Sarstoon Protocol, the representative of the Leader of Opposition would have been present for the negotiations between the two Foreign Ministers ,but would not have been a part of the OAS meeting on the trip.

2016 Global Entrepreneurship Summit Delegate from Belize
U.S. Embassy Belmopan is happy to announce that Shawn Aviles will attend the Global Entrepreneurship Summit (GES), which will take place June 22-24, 2016 in Palo Alto, California. Ms. Aviles will be joining more than 700 entrepreneurs from around the world along with investors, speakers, and leaders in the entrepreneurship space. These innovative entrepreneurs will be joined by high-level U.S. Government officials, including President Barack Obama, Secretary of Commerce Penny Pritzker, Administrator of the Small Business Administration Maria Contreras-Sweet, Administrator of USAID Gayle Smith, Ambassador at-Large for Global Women’s Issues Catherine Russell, and Under Secretary of State for Public Diplomacy and Public Affairs Richard Stengel.

Traffic Wardens receive training in Belmopan
Traffic wardens from the Traffic Department at the Belmopan City Council have recently received four days of intensive training to improve their skills in traffic management. The four day course was taken by 13 traffic officers at the Belmopan based Police Training Academy (PTA). Mayor Khalid Belisle has applauded the efforts of the Traffic Department and informed them that they should wear their uniforms with pride and serve the Belmopan City Council to the best of their abilities. During the almost one week of training, the traffic wardens were taught Belizeans laws relevant to traffic and public relations. Their lecturers were both Assistant Superintendent of Police Eusebio Lanza and Sergeant Samuel Gladden. According to Tricia Pelayo, Public Relations person at the Belmopan City Council, both high ranking police officers were very adept in delivering the course content.

Belizean athletes capture six Gold Medals in Central American Senior Athletics Championship
The Belizean Team to the 17th Central American Senior Championship in Athletics returned home on Monday after participating in the championship that was held at the Jorge “Magico” Gonzalez Stadium in San Salvador, El Salvador over the weekend. Belize’s contingent to the 17th Central American Senior Championship in Athletics consisted of some 21 athletes. During the championship, Belize captured a total of 6 Gold Medals, 4 Silver medals and 2 Bronze medals while establishing 6 new records in the process. Kaina Martinez captured the Gold Medal in the 100m event while establishing a new Central American Record of 11:56sec. She also captured the Gold Medal in the 4x100m relay. Martinez also picked up a Silver Medal in the 200m event in a time of 23.68sec. Tricia Flores picked up a Gold Medal in the Long Jump competition where she established a new meet record at 5.95m. Flores also captured the Gold Medal in the 4x100m relay. The female 4x100m relay team members were Faith Morris, Samantha Dirks, Tricia Flores and Kaina Martinez.

Mayan Man Warriors clip the Belize Bank Bulldogs in Firms Basketball competition
The 2016 Belize District Basketball Association Firms competition continued on Friday 17th June, at the Bird’s Isle with two games on the schedule. In the first game played, Mayan Man Warriors edged out the previously unbeaten Belize Bank Bulldogs by the score of 98-94. The top scorers for the Mayan Man Warriors were Winston Pratt with 27 points, 10 rebounds, 5 assists and 1 steal; Marvin Skeet with 22 points, 14 rebounds, 2 assists and 1 steal and Kevin Lorenzo with 16 points, 1 rebound and 2 steals. For the Belize Bank Bulldogs the top scorers were, Lincey Lopez with 21 points, 5 rebounds, 4 assists and 2 steals; Roscoe Rhys with 20 points, 1 rebound, 2 assists and 3 steals and Marcel Orosco with 18 points, 6 rebounds, 3 assists and 2 steals. In the second game of the night, Belize Water Services squeak pass over the Belize Telemedia Ltd by the score of 71-67. The top scorers for the Belize Water Services Ltd were Jamir Enriquez with 15 points, 8 rebounds, 2 assists and 2 steals; Daron Gentle with 12 points, 4 rebounds and a steal and Akeem Trapp with 11 points, 5 rebounds, 3 assists and 5 steals.

Giovanni Lovell is back to back National Road Champion
The Cycling Federation of Belize held its National Road Championship on Sunday 19th June, 2016 on the George Price Highway. The event started from in front of the Loma Luz Hospital in the Cayo District and travelled to Garbutt’s Service Station in Roaring Creek village back to the Loma Luz Hospital and then back to Garbutt’s Service Station in Roaring Creek Village where the race concluded for a total distance of 100 miles. At the end of some 4:30:52, it was Giovanni Lovell of Digicell 4G Elite Cycling Team that crossed the finish line first which allowed him to repeat as the National Road Champion. The second rider to finish was Nissan Arana of Westrac Alliance also in a time of 4:30:53. He was followed by Ron Vasquez of Team Smart in a time of 4:30:57 and he was followed by Josyln Chavarria Jr. of Digicell 4G Elite Cycling Team in a time of 4:31:40. Chavarria was then followed by Tarique Flowers of Benny’s Megabytes Elite to round off the top five finishers in the event.

Re: Today's Belize News: June 24, 2016 [Re: Marty] #515427
06/24/16 05:31 AM
06/24/16 05:31 AM
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Marty  Offline OP

The Belize Times

Government Bruk!! – UDP gambles with the people’s money
The Dean Barrow Government is broke, broke, broke. While the impacts of the economic crisis are being felt by all sectors of the country, the Government is demonstrating just how desperate it has become for cash with its recent reckless antics. Two week ago, the Barrow Administration went into overdraft in order to pay public officers. Things are really dread in Belmopan. Reports have now surfaced that the Prime Minister himself has been lobbying for his Government to get a large bailout from the people’s savings at Social Security Board. In a letter from the Prime Minister Dean Barrow to the SSB Investment Committee, Barrow suggests that SSB could buy $10 million dollars-worth of G.O.B. shares in B.T.L. and forty-five million dollars-worth of G.O.B. shares in B.E.L. Barrow is well aware that the people’s savings, collected from social security payments paid for by every single worker sits at the SSB. But this money is not for the Government to dip its dirty hands into whenever and however it wants. It is not meant to bailout a cash-strapped Government that has no solution to the economic crisis it has led us into. Much worse, it is not to be invested in risky ventures such as buying shares with an inflated value which only brings about great losses to the workers’ savings.

PUP Calls Talks with Guatemalan “a failure” – Opposition Leader Demands Radical Change in approach to Guatemala
The People’s United Party expresses its deep disappointment at the failed talks held yesterday, June 21 2016, in Washington D.C. However, we are not surprised at yet another failed meeting. Our reports are that there was no positive result except the agreement to continue to talk. It was a complete failure. The PUP decided that it would not attend the talks in Washington D.C. because we fundamentally disagree with the approach being adopted by the Government of Belize. It is plain that Guatemala intends to maintain control of Belize’s portion of the Sarstoon River, and the Government’s response is to keep talking and hoping that Guatemala will at some point in the future withdraw from asserting control.

GOB hikes Fuel Tax AGAIN!
If you didn’t heed the media’s warning that the Government was about to sneak in higher fuel prices on midnight Tuesday, then your visit to the gas station today led to a major headache with the news that the price of a gallon of Premium gas is costing you 59 cents more. Like it has done for several years, the Government didn’t even send out a simple notice to fuel consumers of the price hike. Just the usual “tek your licking” treatment from GOB, with consumers finding out at the pumps. Since the last report on increased fuel prices on May 6th, the fuel prices have gone up twice. This week’s increase is one of the most painful though. Premium fuel went up by a whopping 59 cents. The price went from $9.87 to $10.36. This is the Belize City price, where it is lowest. In other towns, such as Punta Gorda, the price is now nearing $11.00.

The Bloody Mess is Here! – Our country has come under siege from crime and violence
The Ministry of National Security has remained silent on the issue of spiraling crime in the city which has resulted in a spate of shootings and murders. Gang warfare has escalated to new heights with the brazen broad daylight shooting of four persons, one of them a Police Officer, immediately in front of the Queen Street Police Station. The brazen attack took place happened on Friday, June 17, at around 8:15am when a gunman targeted a known gang member coming out of the station. When the gunfire died off Police Corporal Alrick Arnold lay critically wounded, shot in the chest. Also injured were passersby Kean Smith, 24, Elroy Saldano, 44 and Graciela Castillo, 34.

Barrow’s Financial and Economic Nightmare
After issuing bloated contracts to their cronies and squandering $325 million in PetroCaribe loan funds with the sole purpose of winning the 2015 General Elections, the UDP Government has maxed out its “credit card” and is now desperately trying to find new ways to maintain their high lifestyle. In vintage UDP style, the Dean Barrow government has begun the systematic draining of the public financial system in Belize. By the end of 2015, with additional domestic borrowings of $118mn, the government had reached its legal ceiling in both Treasury Bills and Treasury Notes at $200mn and $225mn and approached its ceiling with over $63mn in advances from Central Bank, the legal limit being roughly $80m. In fact, Central Bank was the primary willing victim in this raid in 2015 as it increased its lending to the Government through loans, T-bills and T-notes to the tune of $113mn, mostly financed by printing money. Currency issued by the Central Bank in circulation increased by an unprecedented $60mn or 20.6% to an all-time high of $345mn. In one year, the Central Bank increased its lending to the Government by 85%, which means it almost doubled its entire debt stock with the Government. Overall domestic debt of the Government increased by an astounding 31.4% or $118mn in 2015 alone, over 95% of which came from Central Bank.

Corozal Free Zone Crumbles!
The images here show a crumbling infrastructure at the Commercial Free Zone in the Corozal District, just one more reason why the once vibrant economic hub has been facing collapse under the incompetent management of CEO Raul Rosado and the UDP Government. Earlier this year, the SSB Board Chairman, Doug Singh indicated that they rejected a request to finance infrastructure works at the Free Zone because “it is dying”.

New Zika cases surface in Caye Caulker Village
Latest reports coming out of the Ministry of Health are that there have been a total of five confirmed cases of the ZIKA virus in Belize. The presence of the ZIKA virus in Belize was inevitable as neighbouring countries have been battling with the confirmed cases months prior to Belize confirming its first case. Friday, November 13 saw the Caribbean Public Health Agency announcing the confirmation of five confirmed cases of the virus in the CARICOM territory. Six months later, on May 15, local health officials confirmed its first case in country. That case came out of Belize City and ten days later another case was confirmed in the Cayo District. On June 20, three other cases were found in Caye Caulker Village.

Antiquated Justice System Gets Technology Boost
United States Ambassador to Belize Carlos Moreno symbolically signed off on what is a US$372,000 donation to the justice system in Belize through the Central American Regional Security Initiative (CARSI). The donation includes state of the art audio recording equipment and related IT equipment for the Supreme Court and Magistrate’s Courts. Chief Justice Kenneth Benjamin accepted the donation on behalf of the Judiciary, explaining that “as of today, there are ten Courtrooms in the Supreme Court in Belize City, Belmopan, Dangriga and Orange Walk as well as seventeen Magistrate’s Courts in Belize City, San Pedro, Dangriga and Orange Walk as well as in the remaining five judicial districts in Belize outfitted with audio recording systems. Magistrates will now be relieved of the task of taking verbatim notes and they will be able to focus on the adjudication function.”

Hundreds of Teachers Won’t Return to Classrooms
Hundreds of teachers will not be returning to their classrooms in September after receiving letters from the Ministry of Education informing them that their applications for teaching licenses were not approved. In February, Education Minister Patrick Faber announced that only persons who have obtained teacher’s licenses and those who qualify for special teaching permits will remain employees of the Ministry. About 1,300 teachers were staring the ugly face of retrenchment. The announcement surprised teachers, principals and school administrations who had not been properly alerted that the Ministry would be taking such drastic decision. School administrators have been encouraging their employees to comply with the requirements for their full licenses. The criteria includes University training and fulfilment of pedagogical and workshop training.

Hard Knocks
Here we go again! So Sedi’s back from Washington where he spent some quality time cuddling with Carlos Raul Morales. He explained to the media today that he got a hell of a lot done and we should be proud of him. Like for example he managed to have a cozy tete a tete with Carlos Raul over tea in a corner at Barnes & Nobles. And oh yeah, they went for a walk at the National Mall and the Smithsonian, a little stop at the Lincoln Memorial, some sightseeing, picking up gifts for the family back home in Belize and back home in Guatemala. So then that rascally bunch of reporters, impudent buggers, asked him about the Sarstoon. What about it, said the brand new Guatebelizean minister. Well did you discuss it at all, clamored the media. Isn’t that what you were in Washington to do? Oh sure we discussed it, at length, said Sedi. After five hours of intensive discussion, claimed the fatigued politician, a passionate back and forth and tense standoffs across the diplomatic table, we finally agreed to mention the Sarstoon at our next meeting and probably at the next one too. Ayyy Chihuahua, this fellow has got to go.

The mess is here indeed!
The leaders of the PUP went to the Sarstoon in fulfilment of a promise they had made to the people of Belize. I am proud of those that went, and proud of my Party Leader John Briceño for keeping his word. That’s a funny situation down there, though. We understand that the Foreign Ministry informed their Guatemalan counterparts that the PUP would be going and asked them to allow the expedition free passage of the river to avoid conflict with the Opposition. Sounds messed up right? Shouldn’t Belizeans be allowed into our part of the Sarstoon without having to inform anybody? There’s something fishy about the Sarstoon you know. But friends, stay focused. No doubt the Belize/Guatemala thing is huge. We’re talking about going to the ICJ and potentially losing territory. A few years ago we wouldn’t have contemplated the thought of something like that. But it’s happening. Look at what’s going on right at the Sarstoon.

Another UDP War!
There is an undercover battle for power going on in the United Democratic Party. We’re not talking about the Patrick Faber vs. John Saldivar chronicles. That one is done and the victor has gotten the spoils while the other’s plans were spoilt. We’re talking about Margarito Gapi Vega vs. El Odio Aragon Jr. battle taking place in the north. That is the one to watch and both men seem to know a few tricks. When Gaspar Vega stepped down the other day he expected Dean Barrow to run behind him and give him back the Ministry of Natural Resources. But ever since Lady Zenaida accused him of being somewhat lacking in the pants, Barrow has been hell-bent on proving that he has bigger cojones than everybody else. So poor Gapi didn’t get that call he was expecting. He didn’t get that plea to come back. And just like that he was gone.

Herredia keeps hundreds of children poor and uneducated in San Pedro – UDP Rep. promised a new school 4 years ago…STILL NOTHING!
UDP Belize Rural South area representative Manuel Herredia should hang his head low in shame. He appears to be ignoring one of his constituency area’s most pressing problems – the lack of access to education for hundreds of children on San Pedro due to a lack of classroom space. In 2012, Herredia campaigned and won in the general elections on the promise that he would build a new school for Belize’s top tourist destination. In November 2014, the Government and Herredia announced that they had $1.2 million for the new school on the island and had even designated a parcel of land situated across the Bowen and Bowen Distribution Center located on Blake Street, which would be acquired for the immediate construction of the new Government school. Residents waited and waited. In February 2015, with no construction for a school in sight, a local media house questioned Herredia about why there was still no school. Herredia’s response was one of the most deceptive and shameful.

Arsonist targets Jeep Wrangler on Amara Avenue
On Tuesday afternoon at around 2:45 a Jeep Wrangler belonging to Tenchtronics Communications on Amara Avenue was deliberately set on fire while it was parked in front of the business located on Amara Avenue. By the time Fire Department personnel got to the scene, the entire interior of the vehicle was consumed by flames. While the Fire Department is investigating, the cause of the fire seems to be clear-cut since surveillance footage shows a man on a bicycle committing arson. He was seen first scouting out the area before throwing what is assumed to be flammable liquid in it and then returning to light it.

Galen University hosts “Defending Belize’s Sovereignty” Symposium
The deeply complex dynamics of the Belize-Guatemala dispute are oft-times enough to drive the most studied of people up the wall. Whether we end up being driven up the wall by all the machinations of the recent updates and stories coming to light on a daily basis, or we merely take it all in stride as part of the lengthy process to resolving the matter for good, it is just as important to have access to the relevant information necessary to make a pertinent decision in a future referendum on going to the International Court of Justice (ICJ), which in turn will help to shape the future not just of ourselves and our families, but the very future of our nation-state. And since it is the students, the youth, who will be part of that decision in the immediate future, it would naturally fall on the tertiary level institutions to be a part of the information-dissemination process. That process was given a critical boost when the Galen University hosted the first-of-its-kind National Tertiary Level Empowerment Symposium on Friday, June 17th, 2016 at the Sacred Heart College Auditorium in San Ignacio Town. The event which was sponsored by Zitro International Ltd. (Western Union) and Atlantic Bank Ltd., was held under the theme: “Defending Belize’s Sovereignty”.

Attorney tells court his client has been wrongfully accused of armed robbery
A Belize City man who was accused of committing an armed robbery was remanded to prison, despite submissions from his attorney who urged the presiding Magistrate not to read the charge to his client because he is not the man who committed the robbery. Cassian Young, 27, appeared before Magistrate Deborah Rogers to be arraigned on the robbery charge. Young, a resident of Bagdad Street, allegedly robbed Eve Street resident and security guard Kareem Yasin Hafiya, 40. Before the charge was read, however, Young’s attorney Herbert Panton made a lengthy submission, urging Magistrate Rogers not to read the charge to his client, “Because he is innocent and it would be an injustice”.

Woman accused of obtaining property by deception released on bail
A Belize City woman was released on bail after she pleaded not guilty to three counts of obtaining property by deception for allegedly taking monies from persons who she reportedly told that she was working on a housing project in the Faber’s Road Extension area along with Belize City Councillor Phillip Willoughby and that the monies they were paying was for their house and lot. The accused woman, Gina Cherrington, a resident of 10 Yarborough Road, appeared for arraignment before Magistrate Carlon Mendoza along with her attorney Simeon Sampson, S.C. this afternoon.

Team Belize wins 6 Gold at XXVII Central American track & field championships
Team Belize won six Gold medals and set six new records in the XXVII Central American Senior Track & Field Championships at the Jorge “Magico” Gonzalez Stadium in San Salvador, El Salvador over the weekend. Overall, Belize won 12 medals: 6 Golds, 4 Silver and 2 Bronze. Gold Medals: Kaina Martinez- 100m – 11:56sec, Tricia Flores – Long jump – 5.95m, Itohan Aikhionbare – Shot put – 15.67m, Brandon Jones – Triple Jump – 16.22m, Katy Sealy – Heptathlon – 4817 points, Kaina Martinez, Faith Morris, Tricia Flores, Samantha Dirks – 4×100 Relay – 46.61sec.

City Boys lead SMART Mundialito
Defending champs City Boys have already won their spot in the 2016 SMART Mundialito playoffs after their 7th win in Week 10 of the tournament at the MCC Garden last Saturday. The defending champs are leading the tournament with 23pts as the playoffs begin on July 2. In Game 4, the City Boys overpowered an undermanned Reality Youth squad 3-0; with Rasheid Lord scoring in the 1st half, and Cyril Jones and Kayia Requena scoring after the break. The winless Reality Youths started the game with only 9 men.

Giovanni Lovell, Kaya Cattouse & Shaun Codd win CFB cycling road champs
Team DigiCell’s Giovanni Lovell, Team SMART’s Kaya Cattouse and Shaun Codd of Belize Youth Club won the Cycling Federation of Belize national road championships, held over a 38-mile circuit from the La Loma Luz roundabout on the George Price Highway to Garbutt’s Service Station in Roaring Creek village on Sunday. The Elites and masters rode 2.5 laps, while the Females, Juniors and Youths rode 1.5 laps.

Major Papaya Exporters Phase Out
As of this week, the papaya industry is just about non-existent in northern Belize as the largest papaya exporters, Belize Fruit Packers and Fruta Bomba, based in San Joaquin Village, Corozal District, have scaled down their operations drastically. The company which once employed over 300 Belizeans is down to a mere ten employees today. They will carry through the final activities for the company which includes the destruction of the papaya trees that remain in the fields. Operations will come to a complete close within the next two weeks. The company will migrate to the Dominican Republic and will export papaya grown in Guatemala. The initial announcement came on February 9 when the company confirmed that they would reduce the volume of papaya exports.

DREAMSCAPES in Belize Became a Nightmare
Following a review of some of the files in the Panama Papers, it was found that a pair of offshore companies set up by Mossack Fonseca, the law firm in Panama which is at the center of the Panama Papers scandal, and a Florida-based skin-care company that is now non-existent were the initial developers. The project changed hands over the years but the lawsuit names director and founder Clifton Goodrich and Kenneth Dunn, among others as the defendants. Dunn is reportedly a disbarred attorney and makes up part of the group behind this scheme. According to the Miami Herald, the players includes a disbarred lawyer whose penny stock offering ran afoul of the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission, another disbarred lawyer who went to prison for scheming with mobsters, and two Palm Beach County-based company directors — one past, one present — each of whom blames the other for the project’s troubles. It is estimated that in total the investors had put in about ten million US dollars into Dreamscapes in Belize.

PM slow to act in call to ban dangerous chemical
Every year the Coordinating Group of Pesticides Control Boards of the Caribbean meets in one of its member countries for a few days to discuss the management of pesticides use in their respective countries. The 21st meeting concluded on June 10, 2016 with Belize as its host country and was held under the theme, “A Changing Climate; A Changing World; Responsible Pest and Pesticide Management – Our responsibility”. Interestingly enough, however, despite the 5-day discussions held on disposing of obsolete pesticides, promotion of alternatives and strengthening of pesticides management in the Caribbean as well as the multilateral environmental agreements in the African, Caribbean and Pacific (ACP) countries, the Southeastern Watershed Alliance Group has highlighted the Government of Belize’s irresponsibility through inaction when it comes to the Glyphosate pesticide.

PM slow to act in call to ban dangerous chemical
Every year the Coordinating Group of Pesticides Control Boards of the Caribbean meets in one of its member countries for a few days to discuss the management of pesticides use in their respective countries. The 21st meeting concluded on June 10, 2016 with Belize as its host country and was held under the theme, “A Changing Climate; A Changing World; Responsible Pest and Pesticide Management – Our responsibility”. Interestingly enough, however, despite the 5-day discussions held on disposing of obsolete pesticides, promotion of alternatives and strengthening of pesticides management in the Caribbean as well as the multilateral environmental agreements in the African, Caribbean and Pacific (ACP) countries, the Southeastern Watershed Alliance Group has highlighted the Government of Belize’s irresponsibility through inaction when it comes to the Glyphosate pesticide.

Potemkin Dean
On August 21, 1998 a victorious People’s United Party took the reins of the Government from an inept United Democratic Party. Along with the victory came an air of optimism to the dismal atmosphere left by the worthless red party. In his State of the Nation address at the National Assembly in Belmopan on the 16th day of September 1999, Prime Minister Said Musa began his address with a narrative that bore a striking resemblance to Dean Barrow’s rule in the Esquivel/Barrow administration during the term 93-94. The Honorable Said Musa recalled the story of the Empress Catherine of Russia in 1787. He said “according to the legend when she toured her Empire’s Southern provinces, her Chief Minister Gregorio Potemkin would go one day in advance, setting up fake fronts that made poor wretched villages look prosperous. When the visit was over, he would dismantle the props and move them to the next destination. Ever since, the term “Potemkin village” has been used to refer to apparently happy scenes that are in reality nothing but a façade, bearing no relation to what really lies behind them”.

Jamaicans would say: “What a Prekeh!!” and indeed what transpired last week was a hullabaloo involving no ordinary Jamaican. The subject of this prekeh was no other than Jamaican Attorney General Marlene Malahoo Forte. In the aftermath of the horrendous murders at the Orlando, Florida gay nightclub in which nearly fifty persons were killed and another fifty-odd injured, the United States Embassy in Kingston flew the US flag and the Rainbow flag at half-mast. As is well known the Rainbow flag is a symbol of the Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual and Transgender community worldwide. The next day, Monday, June 13, 2016 Ms. Malahoo Forte posted a ‘Tweet’ which said: “I strongly condemn Orlando shooting but find it disrespectful of Jamaica’s laws to have the rainbow flag flown here. My personal view”. Everything went crazy for her by the next day. There was a huge firestorm of comments, mostly of condemnation of her, on social media. She really drew the ire of many.

Live and Let Live
News that Chief Justice Kenneth Benjamin was poised to deliver judgement in the Caleb Orozco versus the Attorney General of Belize case has sent advocates of both sides scurrying into action. Social media is on fire with comments running the gamut from ridiculous to sublime. It was recently revealed that the CJ would finally deliver said Judgement on Wednesday, July 27th. Anticipation is high and many have drawn forward to the edge of their seats. The case which has been in the courts since 2010 and which concluded over three years ago in May of 2013 has been awaiting judgement for an inordinate amount of time. Justice has certainly been delayed but it is left to be seen if it will also be denied. This case has drawn international attention and no less than the New York Times in 2015 carried a lengthy story about Orosco, prompting many to believe that it might have been an attempt to put pressure on the CJ to deliver his judgement.

Vile Video Gets Heated Response from Ministry of Health
A disturbing video which has been circulating via internet since last week has drawn the attention of mental health officials from the Ministry of Health. The video features a man and a woman, said to have diagnoses of mental disorders being instructed to perform sexual acts by the persons who are recording them on a phone or tablet. In its release, the Ministry states that “The audio on the video reveals that the couple was being encouraged in their actions only to be rewarded with a soda by the persons who were watching and recording the couple performing various sexual acts. The Ministry of Health is appalled at this assault on human dignity and is dismayed that these persons felt comfortable enough to record and share this video to further humiliate this couple and their families”.

Trigger-Happy Cop Remanded for Gun Antics
A strange maneuver occurred this afternoon when Police Officers who were tasked with escorting an accused colleague to the Magistrate’s Court took evasive action to prevent him from being spotted by court reporters. The accused cop was made to walk behind one of the policemen, while the other walked behind them from the junction of Regent Street and Treasury Lane to the Magistrate’s Court building. They seemed to be covering up Detective Constable Urbie Alamilla, who is assigned to the intelligence section of the Eastern Division South, and who is tonight behind bars at the Belize Central Prison. On Tuesday Alamilla was arraigned for discharging his firearm in public, specifically at the Green Jade Restaurant located on the Phillip Goldson Highway in Ladyville. He was remanded because the Firearm Act does not allow for bail at the Magistrate Court level.

Wasting Our Tax Dollars
It appears not all Ministers have gotten the memo that the Government of Belize is facing a severe financial crunch. It seems that while Belizeans have had to make adjustments to their lives in the face of the skyrocketing cost of living and tax increases, the big-timers in Belmopan continue to live like kings and emperors enjoying the perks and lavish living at the expense of everyone else. Just look at this. The Government, through taxpayer’s monies, buys fancy vehicles for Ministers, CEOs and their political cronies. The Government, through taxpayer’s money, pays for the fuel that keeps those gas-guzzling engines turned on and air-conditions blowing cooly so Ministers don’t sweat like the rest of us do. You would think then that with the economic hardships Ministers would consider limiting the use of their vehicles to minimise the waste and unproductivity. But, don’t hold your breath. UDP Ministers continue to abuse these vehicles. Government rides are seen racing up and down our highways after regular working hours, late nights and even weekends.

Breaking Belize NewsPJ

First National Climate Change video competition launched
The Belize National Climate Change Office (NCCO) is hosting its first National Climate Change Youth Video Competition. The NCCO says this opportunity “will allow Belizean youths the opportunity to showcase ways in which they are implementing concrete actions in their communities to address Climate Change”. […]

Moist and unstable conditions to prevail
The 24 hour forecast is for cloudy to overcast skies this afternoon and tonight. It will be cloudy with sunny breaks tomorrow. A few showers, isolated thunderstorms and periods of rain are expected mainly inland and over the northern areas this afternoon, then mainly the coast and […]

Police, local youth group re-open abandoned park
The West Street (Dakers) Park has been rescued from oblivion by a combination of the Police Department (Eastern Division), the Mesopotamia Youth Group and Pine Lumber Co. Ltd. which donated various play sets and picnic tables. Assistant Commissioner of Police Chester Williams acknowledged that due to circumstances, […]

Santa Elena primary school looted
The secretary, Aurora Hernandez, 30, told police that she locked her office located on the the lower flat of the building around 3:00 p.m on Friday, June 17. On the following day, at about 7:30 in the night, she received a call from the school principal who informed her of the break-in.

UDP’s small crack could grow larger
“Absolute power corrupts absolutely.” That’s the way it goes. And in Belize, the government of the day has near absolute power. The previous People’s United Party (PUP) government served two terms in 10 years and that power caused it to splinter and implode. They are still trying to gather the pieces and regroup. The current United Democratic Party (UDP) government is serving its third term in eight years and is already starting to show signs of cracks in the foundation, even if they would like to give the impression that all is well within the party. The recent Deputy Leadership convention that Education Minister Patrick Faber won has caused a crack, if only slightly, in the party.


My Summer To-Do List in Belize: 14 Different Activities
June 20th was the first official day of summer – the longest day of the year. Here in Belize, the HOT season tends to start a bit earlier. *Stats at the end of the post All weather data talk aside, it’s SUMMER! The kids are out of school which means you’ll find many of them playing on the beach and on docks and the traffic in town will be down…no more rides to and from school. Temperatures will be warm, we will probably have rain some nights and a few days and the “tourist season” is slowing a bit. The visitors tend to be younger – college kids, families and many who are budgeting and taking advantage of the “slow season” prices. I am one of those budget travelers so I am a woman with a plan. Here are the 8 things I would like to do this summer. 1. Travel Belize: Take advantage of the lower prices and travel! I plan to visit Corozal (the one major area of Belize where I have NEVER overnighted) and Cayo by the end of the summer.

International Sourcesizz

UK votes to exit EU, Cameron to quit, Markets plunge
n the single most momentous day in British politics since WWII, the United Kingdom has voted to leave the European Union. The impact of this result has been far and wide, with global markets hit and UK Prime Minister David Cameron announcing his resignation. Outside 10 Downing Street, Cameron tells the nation the people have spoken. Britain will have a new Prime Minister before party conference in October, he said. Cabinet is to meet on Monday to work out next steps forward. Final tally gives victory to Leave -- 17,410,742, Remain -- 16,141,241 (52% v. 48%). European markets tumble, pound crashes to its lowest levels in 31 years.

David Cameron announces his resignation - full statement
rime Minister David Cameron has announced his resignation following Britain's vote to leave the European Union. In a speech given outside Downing Street this morning, he explained he would step down by October to ensure the country has a "strong, determined and committed leadership". Here is Mr Cameron's speech in full: "Good morning everyone, the country has just taken part in a giant democratic exercise, perhaps the biggest in our history. Over 33 million people from England, Scotland, Wales, Northern Ireland and Gibraltar have all had their say. We should be proud of the fact that in these islands we trust the people for these big decisions.

District Court Confirms an International Arbitration Award Granted Under the New York Convention
Belize Bank Ltd. v. Gov’t of Belize, No. 14-cv-659 (D.D.C., 2016), is one of several recent cases in which the District Court for the District of Columbia ordered the Government of Belize (“Belize”) to pay an arbitration award. In this case, the Court addressed questions of when federal courts can enforce arbitration awards granted outside the U.S. In 2007, The Belize Bank Limited (“Bank”) initiated arbitration proceedings at the London Court of International Arbitration (“LCIA”) against Belize, who failed to pay the Bank debts originating from a loan payment guarantee signed by then Belizean Prime Minister Said Musa. Because Belize did not initially participate in the proceeding, the LCIA appointed an arbitrator, Zachary Douglas, on behalf of Belize. In 2013, the LCIA ordered Belize to pay the Bank BZ$36,895,509.46 plus interest. In 2014, the Bank filed a petition to enforce the 2013 award in the District of Columbia. Belize moved to dismiss the petition.

Ministry in Belize builds up houses and spirits
Throughout the week of June 12, twelve parishioners from St. Boniface Parish in Fulda and St. Meinrad Parish in St. Meinrad, built a home in Belize City, Belize, Central America in partnership with Hand in Hand Ministries Building for Change Program. This build was the 293rd home built in Belize City through the Building for Change Program. Many Belizean families live in substandard housing.

Discover Belize: a small country that's big on flora and fauna
Imagine brushing up against a nurse shark while diving in a multi-coloured reef, or sipping rum from a coconut on pristine white sounds. With a sub-tropical climate, beaches, coral reefs and jungle to adventure in, Belize should place highly on anybody’s wish lists. I chatted with Trudi Pearce, head advisor to the Belize Tourist Board for European activity, in London at Belize’s first UK trade event, where she shared the tourism strategy with me. “We have launched a digital campaign titled Discover Belize and we are engaging in joint marketing with tour operators. We will also have online agent training early next year and we aim to increase the number of operators selling Belize,” Pearce said. The evening saw UK operators such as Cox & Kings and members of Belize’s High Commission in attendance, including Perla Perdomo, the high commissioner. In 2015 Belize welcomed 12,650 UK visitors, an 11.4% increase on 2014. Almost one third of European tourists were from the UK, making it the largest source market in Europe.


  • Daniela Novelo CCRCS Valedictorian speech 2016, 9min.

  • It's not the US Flag. It's not the Guatemala Flag. It's not the Belize Flag. LBGT celebrated at US Embassy in Belmopan, Belize, 1/2min. Today the U.S. Embassy commemorated LGBT pride month here in Belize with a LGBT flag raising ceremony, press conference and round table to discuss LGBT issues in Belize. The LGBT flag will remain at the Embassy until the end of the month. Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual and Transgender Pride Month (LGBT Pride Month) is currently celebrated each year in the month of June to honor the 1969 Stonewall riots in Manhattan. The stonewall riots were a tipping point for the LGBT movement in the U.S. Today celebrations include pride parades, picnics, parties, workshops, symposia and concerts, and LGBT Pride Month attracts millions of participants around the world.

  • Drone over Ambergris Caye, Belize, 1min. This is what happens when you fly a drone over Belize's San Pedro >>

  • Spider Monkeys of Belize, 1min. Taken December of 2014 Near the mayan ruins of xunantunich.

  • Gopro tarpon fishing in Belize, 1.5min. Quick edit of us tarpon fishing in Placencia, Belize.

  • Hog Head Dance, Belize, 3.5min. The children of San Narciso did this cultural dance for us on our last day at their school. January, 2016.

  • Backpacking Through Belize, 35min. My friends and I backpacked through Belize for 9 days. We went cave tubing, snorkeling, to the Belize Zoo, and a Baboon Sanctuary and we went to 3 Mayan Temples.

  • Maya Leaders Alliance of Southern Belize, Belize - Equator Prize 2015 Winner, 6min.

  • Pamelas road trip (Canada to Nicaragua), 34min. A one year road trip starting in Canada going through USA, Hawaii, Mexico, Belize, Guatemala, EL Salvador, and finishing in Nicaragua.

  • Belize, 3min. Views of Ambergris Caye, Caye Caulker, & Lamanai Ruins

  • Shark Dive, Borderline, Belize, 1 of 2, 10min. Nearly uncut footage from the Shark dive in Belize.

  • Placencia Belize Fishing and Diving, 4min.

  • Belize 2016 Night Dive 1, 4min.

  • The Making of Kanantik - Featuring: Kenneth Ussenko - Architectural Designer, 9min. A discussion with the Kanantik Belize Architectural Designer Kenneth Ussenko.

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