Minister Sedi Elrington on Why He “Named” Julius Espat
The Prime Minister slipped the media today following a cabinet meeting, but his ministers were out to do damage control on Friday’s outrageous House Meeting. Pickstock Area Representative Wilfred ‘Sedi’ [...]
Veteran Parliamentarian Michael Finnegan Calls Friday’s Events “Unfortunate”
During the fiasco on Friday, the presentation by Espat on the damming Special Audit, which exposes corruption at the Immigration between 2011 and 2013, was muzzled when Espat was physically [...]
Finnegan Tells Why He Is Not in Special Audit Report and Defends Fellow Ministers
The Special Audit conducted by Auditor General Dorothy Bradley into the issuance of Belizean passports and visas during a two-year period spanning 2011 and 2013 still has currency and is [...]
Foreign Minister Says Guat Counterparts’ Comments Will Not Change Situation
Guatemalan Foreign Minister Carlos Raul Morales has made very unbecoming comments following the release of the O.A.S. report on the fatal shooting of fourteen-year-old Julio Rene Alvarado Ruano in April. [...]
An Updated List of Ministers and C.E.O.’s is Released
Three unelected persons have been given top ministerial appointments in the Barrow Administration. But why have the elected representative been pushed aside? Following today’s cabinet meeting, the Press Office issued [...]
Senior Minister Finnegan Dishes on Introduction of Unelected Ministers to Cabinet
This afternoon, senior parliamentarian Michael Finnegan shared his thoughts on the new ministerial appointments. Isani Cayetano “It would seem as if though two of the most powerful portfolios within [...]
Patrick Menzies and Church Leaders Back in Belmopan for Protest
This morning, the Hispanic arm of the Evangelical Church, led by Patrick Menzies, was back on Independence Hill where they marched against government’s decision not to appeal the Supreme Court [...]
Former Open Vote Worker Wins Case in Court over Termination
In February of this year, the Supreme Court heard the case of Melissa Belezaire Tucker, a former Ministry of Education employee who served in the Public Service for seventeen years, [...]
Youth Accused of Murder and Freed is Hospitalized in Stabbing Incident
A Belize City youth is tonight hospitalized at the Karl Heusner Memorial Hospital after he was stabbed multiple times near the Radisson Hotel in the Fort George area. Twenty-three year [...]
Callum Sutherland Pleads Guilty for Cannabis Stash
A Belize City man is in debt of ten thousand dollars to the Belize City Magistrate’s Court for the trafficking of four hundred and twenty-eighth grams of marijuana on June [...]
San Pedro Man Claims Police Brutality; He is Rival with Policeman for a Girl
A thirty-two year old San Pedro resident is claiming police brutality. Allen Delroy Martinez says that he was beaten before being locked down at the police station for two days [...]
Is Zika on the Rise? Cases Reported in Caye Caulker, Benque and Succotz
It’s been a while since we’ve reported on Zika. In mid June, the first confirmed case of zika was recorded in Belize in the west. Since then, there have been [...]
Ministry of Health Concentrates on Pregnant Women at Risk for Zika
Dr. Marvin Manzanero, Director of Health Services “There is a package that has been developed to be given to pregnant women to try to minimize their risk. The package usually [...]
Results of Multiple Indicator Cluster Survey a Mixed Bag
Findings of a survey called the Belize Multiple Indicator Cluster Survey Five were released today. The survey was held to identify key indicators to formulate policies and programs and to [...]
Michael Finnegan Surprised that P.U.P. Did Not Speak on B.T.L. Settlement
Litigation in respect of the compensation award, following government’s acquisition of B.T.L. in 2009 is ongoing. The latest round of legal battle is presently before the Caribbean Court of Justice; [...]
Opposition Leader Blames Speaker for B.T.L. Settlement Not Being Debated
During Monday’s press conference, People’s United Party leader John Briceño explained that the B.T.L. settlement did not make it into Friday’s debate because of the ruckus that ended the House [...]
Elodio Aragon Junior Calls Out Julius Espat for “Tantrum”
During the spectacle in the House on Friday, Junior Minister Elodio Aragon remained in his seat and observed the entire drama involving Julius Espat as it unfolded. Today, he expressed [...]
Environment and Reality Meet on New Channel Five Show, Enviroconnect
A new show starts tonight right here on Channel Five, following the news package. Enviro-Connect Belize is a reality television show by the Department of Environment to highlight the various [...]
Opposition Leader To Set Up Pressure At Tomorrow's Senate Meeting
The Opposition People’s United Party’s bolstered campaign to force the Barrow Administration to resign or call fresh elections starts tomorrow when the Senate meets in Belmopan. The Opposition Senators are expected to ramp up the pressure and introduce a motion to investigate the findings contained in Auditor General’s special audit into the scandals at the Immigration Department. Now, if it feels like de ja vu, it is because back in November 2013 the Opposition had also introduced a similar motion following the Penner scandal. That attempt was unsuccessful however because the then Immigration Minister, Senator Godwin Hulse refused to step away from the Senate meeting despite the conflict of interest in his participation; enabling the Government’s majority members to vote against the motion. At tomorrow’s Senate meeting, Senator Hulse who is now the Police Minister, will be there once more. Yesterday the Opposition Leader indicated that Hulse will be asked to recuse himself when it’s voting time.
PUP Senators To demand Sign On To UN Convention On Corruption
At Wednesday’s Senate Meeting the Opposition Senators will also call on the Government to sign the United Nation’s Convention on Corruption. The Opposition People’s United Party has announced that it plans to push the ruling UDP to a breaking point with the ultimate goal being fresh elections.
Honorable John Briceno - Opposition Leader People’s United Party: “Ladies and Gentlemen, it is clear that this UDP administration has lost the confidence of the Belizean people, the Central Bank governor has confirmed in black and white what we the people of this country feel every day that they have wrecked the Belizean economy with a poverty rate of almost over 43%, almost one in two Belizeans are poor and we continue to get poorer by the day, the government has reneged on their promise to the teachers and public officers, they have not provided opportunities for gainful employment and as a result more and more of our young people have become frustrated since they cannot find work...”
Mexicans Attacks Revenue Agencies At Santa Elena Border
Media reports from neighboring Chetumal, Quintana Roo, are that yesterday a group of irate citizens attempted an act of civil disobedience when they attacked a vehicle assigned to the Tax Administrative Service, one of Mexico’s government revenue agencies whose office is located near the old Subteniente Lopez bridge near the Belize-Mexico border point.
Reports are that the attack was triggered when one of the agency oficials attempted to stop a taxi motorcycle for inspection for contraband, but ended up colliding into it. Other taxi motorcycle drivers saw the incident and became furious. Reports are that one of them threw gasoline at the vehicle and was about to light it on fire, but the vehicle was whisked away to safety.
The group of irate Mexicans then picked up stones and stoned the agency’s office. The Police had to intervene to restore calm.
Canada Armed Forces Supports BDF
The Independent investigation carried out in to the death of thirteen year old Guatemalan National Julio Rene Alvarado revealed that Belize’s armed forces did not cause the death of the minor during a crossfire between the BDF and Guatemalan civilians back in the month of April at the Chiquibul Forest.
The end results of the investigation is not being accepted by the Guatemalan Government which is causing tension to rise once more between both countries.
And as this happens Canada is currently assisting Belize in order to determine its defense policy. Back in the month of February, high ranking military officers from Belize travelled to Ottawa with the sole purpose of attending meetings and to receive advice from the Department of National Defence and Canadian Forces with regards to defense tactics.
Statistics Indicates Findings Out Of The MICS5
The Statistical Institute of Belize, in collaboration with the Government of Belize and the United Nations Children’s Fund (UNICEF), today presented the Key Findings coming out of the Multiple Indicator Cluster Survey 5 (MICS5). The survey which was carried out in late 2015 is part of UNICEF’s global MICS program, designed to collect valuable and internationally comparable data on the situation of women and children by means of large scale household surveys.
During the study more than five thousand two hundred households across the country of Belize were sampled and for the first time, data was collected not only on women and children but also on men. The survey revealed that of the households surveyed, almost 92 percent have access to electricity, while 96 percent reported using improved sources of drinking water. About 87 percent of households had improved sanitation facilities, or facilities that adequately separate human waste from human contact.
PUP Wants Appointment Of Integrity Commission, PM Says That Is Not Possible
One of the reform issues which the Opposition will be demanding is the appointment of the Integrity Commission. While the law calls for the appointment and functioning of this important check and balance body, it has not functioned for the entire life of the Barrow Administration. At last week Friday’s House Meeting, Prime Minister Dean Barrow claimed that there was little he could do about it.
Rt. Honorable Dean Barrow – Prime Minister of Belize:
“We had appointed a full Integrity Commission or designated the full membership of the Integrity Commission and then when some of those we had designated found out that membership of the Integrity Commission involved being a politically exposed person, a pet in the language employed in the International Community, the refused to proceed, when you are a pep and I am sure the member knows, you are oblige no only to make full disclosure to any commercial institutions, you are prevent from opening bank accounts abroad, your designation once that status is applied to you it is made clear that your entire generation also become peps...”
New Operating Theatre For NRH
Orange Walkenos will soon be able to enjoy and benefit from a new and improved Operating Theatre at the Orange Walk Northern Regional Hospital before the end of this year. Yesterday afternoon, the Minister and Minister of State in the Ministry of Health Hon. Pablo Marin and Hon. Dr. Angel Campos, along with CEO Dr. Ramon Figueroa signed contracts between the Government of Belize and various contractors for works and repairs to the facility.
According to a release by the Ministry of Health, the works are scheduled to commence immediately and should conclude at the end of November.
Special Audits' Report Cited PM In Fraudulent Nationality Scheme
The Special Audit names almost every member of the current UDP Cabinet and others who have retired from electoral politics as alleged participants in various schemes. Even Prime Minister Dean Barrow is cited in the audit report for allegedly facilitating the issuance of Belizean nationality for his wife’s brother.
Honorable John Briceno - Opposition Leader People’s United Party:
“The auditor general’s report provides proof on the hypocrisy of Prime Minister Barrow who promised to chop off head of corruption with a special machete, he did not do it to Penner, he did not chopped off Castros’ head, they are still Cabinet colleagues, now that his personal involvement had been exposed, the Prime Minister has completely lost the moral authority to discipline any of his ministers, now if he opens his mouth on corruption or immigration illegality they will simply say to him, no watch me, watch yourself, this is why we here in the PUP say that the recommendations of the Auditor General must be followed including but not limited to the cancellation forthwith of all nationality certificates, passports and VISAS fraudulently issued, including to the one issued to the Prime Minister’s brother-in-law.”
Minister of Foreign Affairs sees no need for Guats to apologize
On Friday, we told you about the drama that occurred outside the National Assembly Building with protestors and the drama that occurred inside the National Assembly Building with Area Representative Julius Espat. Those stories dominated the news but there were other topics of interest on Friday, an...
Guatemalan Foreign Minister criticizes Belizeans, PM, and OAS following investigation results
Well even if some Belizeans were still hopeful for an apology from the Guatemalans, they better think again. Instead of an apology, the Guatemalan Foreign Minister Carlos Morales was extremely critical of the OAS, the findings of the report, and the Belizean people and Prime Minister of Belize. He ...
DPM Faber will buy his own vehicle
On Friday, Prime Minister Dean Barrow said in the House that GOB would be financing the repairs of the damaged vehicle or purchasing a new vehicle for the Minister of Education and Deputy Prime Minister Patrick Faber. This is after Faber’s Government vehicle somehow ended up in the Caribbean Sea aft...
Early Morning Murder in Orange Walk
There was a murder in Orange Walk on Sunday morning. The victim has been identified as Kevin Flowers. According to police, on August 29 at about 5 o’clock that morning, 28-year-old Kevin Albert Flowers was shot multiple times in front of his home on Smithsonia Street, Orange Walk Town. Police say ...
GSU goes to Mayflower Street, Tyrone Meighan detained, Shaquille Meighan shot
Early Sunday morning on Mayflower Street in Belize City, just after 1 a.m., elements of the Gang Suppression Unit (GSU), following the killing of Junie Balls McKenzie, visited the area as part of their investigation. According to residents, as GSU came onto the street, shots were fired and they tur...
Cayo man beaten in Benque succumbs to injuries
A man from the Cayo District has succumbed to injuries he received during a beat down in July of this year..36 year old Michael Pagett, a resident of San Ignacio Town was badly beaten by two men in Benque Viejo Del Carmen on July 31st 2016. Pagett was in a critical condition at the Karl Heusner Mem...
Body of a female found hanging at an abandoned building in San Ignacio
The decomposing body of a woman was found hanging in a house in San Ignacio on Sunday morning. According to reports, a foul smell coming from an abandoned concrete building on Church street led to the discovery. An onsite post mortem was conducted due to the advanced state of decomposition. The woma...
Queen of the Bay crowned
The 71st Queen of the Bay Pageant was held this past Saturday. Stann Creek’s Cristalyn Castillo won the coveted title of Queen of the Bay 2016. First runner-up went to Toledo’s Aliesha Vernon; second runner-up to Lashania Crawford of Belize City; third runner-up to Aldeesha Castillo of Corozal; a...
Junie Balls’ son, 21, killed early Sunday morning
The son of legendary Belizean gangster, George “Junie Balls” McKenzie, met his death shortly after 2 o’clock Sunday morning.
George Mckenzie, Jr., 21, like his father, was listed as a main suspect in several criminal incidents being investigated by police, and was even remanded in 2014 for attempted murder. However, unlike his father, this student of Wesley sixth form, athlete and father to one daughter was never convicted of anything.
His father, George “Junie Balls” McKenzie, was slain on August 27, 2007, and hours after the 9th anniversary of his death, McKenzie, Jr., also lost his life.
McKenzie, Jr., and his girlfriend, Shereffa Jex; his brother, Kiffer McKenzie and friend Michael “Pancho” Usher, all from the Majestic Alley area, had gone to a soca concert held at the ITVET compound in Belize City on Saturday night.
House Speaker kicks out Julius Espat!
The culture of disrespect in the House of Representatives has been around for a long time, but it has never resulted in police being ordered to eject a member of the House who was named by the Speaker in post-independent Belize until today when House Speaker Michael Peyrefitte suspended the Opposition People’s United Party (PUP) Cayo South area representative Hon. Julius Espat after the Pickstock area representative and Minister of Foreign Affairs, Hon. Wilfred “Sedi” Elrington, presented the motion to name him.
Hon. Espat, however, refused to leave his seat. Police, in carrying out the order of the Speaker, first cleared the galleries of the House—even putting out members of the media, before they literally dragged Espat out the Chamber of the House of Representatives, with him resisting every inch of the way, as the other members of his party walked out in solidarity, ending the sitting of the House in a controversial way.
PUP call for Speaker Peyrefitte’s head!
The Opposition People’s United Party (PUP) called a press conference this afternoon at their Independence Hall headquarters, where Party Leader, Hon. John Briceño, briefed the media on the party’s plan following last Friday’s spectacle at the House of Representatives meeting, when all PUP parliamentarians walked out in solidarity with the Cayo South area representative, Hon. Julius Espat, who was named and suspended by House Speaker Michael Peyrefitte.
Briceño said that the Opposition has lost confidence in the Speaker and demanded that he be removed, “because he has disgraced the office of the Speaker and brought the House into disrepute.”
Apart from calling for the removal of the Speaker of the House of Representatives, Briceño also made several other demands of the Barrow government, among them that the government should call new elections.
Shocker: Candelaria Saldivar paid $60,000 a year for 15 months to do nothing!
Candelaria Saldivar-Morter, sister of Defense Minister John Saldivar, has strangely been on administrative leave on full benefits—including monthly allowances—for a year and three months, with no news of when exactly she would be re-assigned, according to revelations made in Parliament on Friday.
Last May, it was announced that Saldivar-Morter, who was part of the team which led an internal investigation into the Elvin Penner passport scandal as the Chief Executive Officer responsible for Immigration, had been put on administrative leave until Prime Minister Dean Barrow, who has the portfolio for the public service, can re-assign her, which he has apparently been unable to do for over a year now.
A high-ranking government official had reportedly complained about Saldivar’s “management style.” Saldivar’s boss, Immigration Minister Godwin Hulse, had said that Saldivar was moved to preserve harmony.
“I want my country back!!”
“I want my country back,” “leave 53,” and “Barrow have to go,” were among the statements being chanted by the approximately 2,000 protesters who turned up this morning at the footsteps of the National Assembly building during today’s House of Representatives meeting/
The protest was the result of a collaboration between the churches and unions, as well as the activist group Citizens Organized for Liberty through Action (COLA), the “I want my country back” movement and the Poor People Organization for a Healthy and Righteous Society (PPOHRS), who say they are not in support of the Chief Justice’s recent ruling on Section 53 of the criminal code and the corruption highlighted in the recent Auditor General’s report.
Commenting on that ruling, Giovanni Brackett of COLA said, “We do not support the changing of the sodomy laws in Belize. We don’t believe that the government should allow one percent of our society to dictate the morals of an entire nation; this government is not a government of the majority, but of the minority.”
Police manhandle the media in the House of Representatives!
The meeting of the House of Representatives on Friday will go down as unprecedented in the history of this country because of the chaos that followed both outside and inside of the House, when an Opposition People’s United Party parliamentarian was dragged out of the House by Belmopan police, who disgraced themselves by manhandling the media for no good reason.
Police manhandled some members of the media and dragged Channel 7’s news director, Jules Vasquez out of the gallery from where he was recording the House’s proceedings.
Who gave the order for the police to drag media representatives out of the gallery? The media was only doing its work, after all.
“On Friday, when you cleared out the gallery in the House of Representatives, under whose authority were you acting?” Amandala asked Howell Gillett, the Officer commanding the Belmopan Police formation.
Police United goalie Keith Allen chosen “Goalkeeper of the Week”
In its “Official weekly recap of the Scotiabank CONCACAF Champions League” for “Week 3, August 23-25, 2016,” Belize goalie Keith Allen of Police United has been chosen “Goalkeeper of the Week,” for his splendid performance against Pachuca of Mexico on Tuesday, August 23, where Pachuca defeated Police United, 3-0, in a game that could have seen a much bigger score, if not for the stellar performance in goal by Allen. According to the concacaf.com report, Keith Allen received 18 shots on goal, stopped 15 of them, while allowing 3 goals by Pachuca. On account of his performance, Allen was also selected as goalkeeper in the “Best XI, Group Stage Week 3” in Champions League.
Placencia perfect at Week 2
The double round-robin regular competition of the Premier League of Belize (PLB) Opening Season 2016-2017 has just completed Week 2, and only one team, Placencia Assassins FC, sports a perfect record so far, with two lopsided wins and no goals allowed, to lead all 9 teams. (See standings below.)
There was only one night game this past weekend, and it was at the Isidoro Beaton Stadium in Belmopan on Saturday night, where Police United, fresh from their first two CONCACAF Champions League outings (both losses, 4-0 and 3-0), were greeted by their Belizean hosts, defending PLB champions Belmopan Bandits, with another defeat, this one by a 2-1 score. Danny Jimenez gave Police the early lead at the 14th minute, but the Bandits came back with goals from Brazilian import Aloisio Teixeira (25’) and Frank Lopez (68’) to register their first win of the tournament.
Infotel takes Game 1 in BDFA Firms Basketball
The Belize District Basketball Association’s (BDBA) Firms Basketball Tournament 2016 tipped off Game 1 in the best-of-three games championship series on Saturday night at the Belize Elementary School (BES) gym, and it was Infotel eking out the 99-97 victory over Belize Bank Bulldogs. Leading Infotel were Earl Johnson 36 pts 10 rebs, Eyan Rene 18 pts 14 rebs 12 assts, Darwin Elijio 15 pts, Stafford Young 13 pts and Elton Anderson 10 pts; while the Bulldogs were led by Brian White 30 pts 19 rebs, captain Roscoe Rhys 20 pts, Marcel Orosco 16 pts 6 rebs and Lincey Lopez 10 pts 8 assts.
According to the BDBA schedule, the championship will be decided this coming weekend as follows:
Agitation and hysteria
In recent years in Belize, a growing number of self-appointed experts have emerged, both in the professional print/electronic media and in amateur social media, who have been confidently expressing their opinions on our society’s plethora of heated socio-political issues. Unlike the case in most other democratic countries, however, in Belize our trained academics with reputations to protect almost never participate in the relevant conversations at the public level.
Conversations in Belize feature too much imprecision and indiscipline, but you have to understand that there are powerful special interests here which are always seeking to muddy the waters. The two major political parties, the ruling United Democratic Party (UDP) and the Opposition People’s United Party (PUP), both of which own their own party newspapers and radio and television stations, in addition to the fact that several of their leaders own their own radio and television stations in District constituencies, are dominant in the conversations. Lord Michael Ashcroft, who is like a political party unto himself, owns his own television station in the media capital and uses his various advertising budgets to influence the conversations in the other media outlets.
$183.6 mil in losses due to Hurricane Earl
The damage wrought by Hurricane Earl, which struck Belize on August 3 and 4, 2016, is now estimated at $183.6 million, according to Prime Minister Dean Barrow, who gave a report in Parliament on Friday.
Barrow had previously told the press that individual property losses had been estimated at upwards of $15 million and losses to agriculture and tourism at over $100 million.
In his presentation today, he said that losses to the utility companies—the Belize Telemedia Limited and the Belize Electricity Limited—amounted to an estimated $25 million.
Meanwhile, damage to roads was estimated at $29.4 million.
According to Barrow, 4,684 households were impacted, amounting to an estimated 17,000 persons in the Belize, Cayo, Orange Walk and Stann Creek Districts.
Morales accuses Barrow and Belizeans of cynicism
Guatemala’s Foreign Minister, Carlos Raúl Morales, has publicly accused Prime Minister Dean Barrow, and Belizeans in general, of being cynics, following a call from Barrow last week for a public apology from Guatemala, after the unveiling of an expert report detailing the circumstances of the April 20th shooting death of a Guatemalan minor inside the Chiquibul National Park.
In response to the shooting incident, Guatemala had mobilized its elite troops to the Belize border and waged a public relations offensive, accusing Belize’s military of a “cowardly act of aggression” and claiming that there were 10 such incidents since 1999; but likewise not detailing the circumstances of the shooting incidents.
The expert report, filed with the Organization of American States by Dr. James E. Hamby (of the USA) and Dr. Patricia Rosa Linda Trujillo Mariel (of Mexico), confirmed that the bullets which killed the minor did not come from the Belizean military’s weapon. It also documented that there were two bullet holes in trees at the location where the Belize enforcement patrol, and particularly rangers of the Friends for Conservation and Development, co-manager of the national park, said that they had come under fire from the Guatemalans, who, according to the patrol, came flashing lights intermittently and then opened fire at them.
Police were told to ignore leaked Immigration Department documents
The release of the Auditor General’s report on the Immigration Department scandal, which will be tabled at the House of Representatives meeting on Friday, has begun to refocus national attention on a number of illegalities stemming from corrupt practices during the period the report covers, between 2011 and 2013.
A lot of high level efforts went into perverting the course of justice in the early part of the process of addressing the scandals at the Immigration Department. In regards to the Elvin Penner passport scandal, the government of Prime Minister Dean Barrow went on a mission to make sure that no one would be held criminally responsible for the illegal sale of a Belize passport by Penner to a man who had never set foot in Belize.
The orders were given for the police’s investigative team to limit their investigation to the PUP attorney Arthur Saldivar, and how he managed to obtain Immigration Department documents, a retired senior police officer who called KREM’s Wake Up Belize Morning Vibes (WUB) confirmed yesterday, Monday morning.
Breaking Belize News
Ex-open vote worker wins court case
In February of this year, the Supreme Court heard the case of Melissa Belezaire Tucker, a former Ministry of Education employee who served in the Public Service for seventeen years, from 1995 to 2013, when she was terminated. Tucker was first appointed as a […]
Belize tourism promotes “experiences”
A new series of ads for the Belize Tourism Board, created by the Olson agency, aims to re-define the Belizean experience for potential visitors. Long marketed as “Mother Nature’s Best Kept Secret,” and later as a place to “Discover How to Be,” the new ads […]
Former Immigration C.E.O. Candelaria Saldivar Still on Government Payroll
C.E.O. Candelaria Saldivar, the sister of Minister John Saldivar, remains on administrative leave over a year after vacating her office in the Ministry of Immigration. That’s because she reportedly couldn’t get along with the Heads of Department. During this time, the senior public officer […]
Central Bank Governor contract up in September
Central Bank Governor Glen Ysaguirre’s contract will be expiring at the end of September. Ysaguirre will reportedly not be renewing his contract. Joy Grant has been named as Ysaguirre’s possible replacement, according to several unconfirmed reports. There were reports from the PUP that Ysaguirre […]
Resort keeper charged for murdering mentally ill woman
Donald Heredia, a 51-year-old grounds-keeper for a Caye Caulker resort, was arraigned and charged for murder on Monday. Heredia was charged for the murder of Jennifer Coleman, 51. Coleman was stabbed to death inside her apartment on August 23 on Aventura Street on the […]
Latin American music icon Juan Gabriel dead at 66
Latin American singer and music icon Juan Gabriel died on Sunday morning in his home in Santa Monica, California. Juan Gabriel, whose real name is Alberto Aguilera Valadez was 66 years old. He suffered a fatal heart attack in his home, a day after […]
Going Bananas in Belize City Market
Limes the size of Oranges!!
Oranges the size of Grapefruits!!
Grapefruits the size of Cabbages!!
Cabbages the size of Watermelons!!
5 Limes for $1
10 Bananas for $1 TEN, YES TEN!!!
Sorry if I sound too excited or find it hard to believe the prices of produce in the mainland. We have been in the city for two weeks now and enjoying heading to the market to purchase veggies and fruits. Compared to prices in San Pedro, Ambergris Caye, I don’t have to cut one arm and a leg to afford eating healthier.
The Michael Finnegan Market is one of the best places in the city to get cheap veggies and fruits. Once they make their way to the supermarkets their prices soar, skyrocketing once they reach the islands. Tuesday, Friday and Saturday are the very best days when fresh produce arrives to the market from the farmers/producers in the mainland; and you better get up early to get your hands on the best and freshest products – 5a.m. early! If that is too early for you, getting there around 9a.m. or 10a.m. is not so bad.
Best Time to Visit Belize
Mother nature’s best kept secret see’s a surprising number of visitors for a “secret”, but with lush virgin jungles and cushiony white sand beaches it no wonder why. Despite all the adventurers who trek here, many people still find themselves wondering: When is the best time to visit Belize?
The Best Time To Visit Belize Depends On What You Are Looking For!
As any local will happily tell you, it’s always a good time for an unBelizable vacation, and that’s true. Depending on your tastes, however, there’s a good time (which is seriously always) and the best time for you to visit Belize.
Here are the best times, for who, and why, to visit our slice of Caribbean paradise.
THE ESSENTRICS MOVEMENT AT GRAND CARIBE BELIZE!!
Resident owner at Grand Caribe Belize, Sheryl Hitchens, introduced us to the concept of Essentrics. She had been talking about it for a while and kept inviting us to experience it. Being that it’s now offered here at Grand Caribe I was excited to see exactly what it entailed.
But, before immersing myself into anything, I figured it wouldn’t hurt doing a little Googling… and so I did. “ESSENTRICS is a unique program that rapidly changes the shape of your body through a dynamic and fluid combination of strengthening and stretching. The results come quickly – not over years, but in a matter of minutes. Increased flexibility is enjoyed instantly.” (Google 8.28.16)
So, on a warm Thursday morning I joined the girls in the gym. Oh yeah, we have a full gym here at Grand Caribe Belize; but, this story isn’t about our fully air conditioned gym, with state of the art equipment. It’s about Essentrics.
It’s a Jungle Out There, You Won’t Want to Vacation Anywhere Else
When you’re asked to describe the most beautiful place on earth, are you tempted to invoke a cliché to get your point across? It’s easy to see why; hyperbole has become a powerful speaking aid, which is how our conversations become littered with “awesomes,” “amazings” and that doesn’t even take you out of the As!
But we beg your indulgence as we insist that “a picture is worth more than a thousand words” when it is used to describe Caves Branch Jungle Lodge, a destination so breathtaking, guests often say they’re speechless the moment they visit the Caves Branch website to virtually step through the door of private accommodations that have no equal.
This is a magical place. Secrets are shared. Nature is revered. Time speeds by too fast as guests learn how it feels to be one with nature. Allow us to tell you a little about how Caves Branch came to be one of Belize’s crown jewels and why you should visit.
A great story deserves a great beginning: Once upon a time, Ian Anderson happened upon Belize long before it became a Caribbean hot spot. He carved out a bit of jungle and built a rustic camp with all of the necessities anyone seeking a primitive outdoor experience could desire. Campers settled into a true jungle adventure that included taking in one-of-a-kind natural sites not found elsewhere and they found all of the basics necessary to enjoy their time, including outhouses and river bathing. Guests returned. The lodge’s reputation grew.
Ambergris Caye: This rolled in this afternoon
As I sat on the deck looking out to the reef, a remarkably chilly breeze swept in from behind me. I turned around and saw this.
The chilly wind and the massing cloud formation kept on coming. So ominous, yet so beautiful. It reminded me of the scenes in “Independence Day” when the alien ships would suddenly drop down out of a thick roiling mass of cloud cover.
But that didn’t happen.
Here is a sequence of the cloud as it moved up from south San Pedro town and eventually skittered across the reef and out to sea.
There was the rumble of thunder here and there and a tiny sprinkling of rain. Nothing to match the fierce appearance of this cloud!
Meet the LGBT Activist Who Defeated Belize’s Anti-Sodomy Law
How does it feel, I asked Belize’s leading LGBT activist, to have finally prevailed in a six-year-long effort to have his country’s sodomy law declared unconstitutional?
“Stressful,” he replied.
At first, I laughed. I’ve known Caleb Orozco professionally for nearly 10 years, and he’s always cut to the quick, throwing shade on those who deserve it while remaining laser-focused on improving the lives of sexual and gender minorities in Belize and throughout Central America and the Caribbean. It didn’t surprise me that only two weeks after the landmark Supreme Court case was decided, he was already focused on the challenges ahead.
But then he went into details. “Everybody thinks that because you win a court decision, the social concerns and threats of violence end,” Orozco told me. “They don’t.”
As the sole named plaintiff in the case, Orozco is now somewhat famous in his small home country. I asked what it’s like to walk down the street. “I get lots of stares,” he said. “People act like they’ve never seen a gay man before—whispering, or an aggressive kind of silence. A smile or laughter that comes out of nowhere.”
Jungle Combat: Back To Belize
The Infantry Battle School has returned to Belize for the first time in five years.
The training centre, which is based in Brecon, has spent the last three weeks in the jungle on 'Exercise Grim Warrior', the final part of its Platoon Commanders Battle Course.
The exercise used to be a regular fixture in Belize but in 2011 the British Army Training and Support Unit Belize (BATSUB) was mothballed and it had to be moved elsewhere.
The course switched to Cyprus, spent a short while in Kenya and then moved to Scotland but commanders have always hankered after its former home.
In their eyes, Belize offers the ultimate test which takes soldiers out of their comfort zone.
Canada assisting Belize with defence policy amid tensions with Guatemala
Canada is assisting Belize with its defence policy as tensions between the Central American nation and neighbouring Guatemala continue to simmer over the killing of a 13-year-old boy by Belize soldiers.
Feliz Enrique, CEO of the Belize defence ministry, said last week that the US and Britain are also being consulted.
Belize is embroiled a border dispute with Guatemala, which deployed 3,000 troops in April to a disputed area between the two countries after the 13-year-old was shot dead.
Guatemalan officials claimed the youth and his family were attacked as they planted crops near the border.
But Belize’s government said security forces investigating illegal land clearing in a national park had detained a Guatemalan man.
Banking Regulators, Facing Criticism, Seek to Dispel Myths on Money-Laundering Rules
U.S. banking regulators sought Tuesday to “dispel certain myths” around anti-money-laundering rules that critics contend have inadvertently cut off access to the U.S. financial system for some countries, businesses and individuals.
The Treasury Department, along with four bank regulators, published an unusual, four-page “fact sheet” along with a lengthy blog post to clarify regulatory expectations related to the rules.
While the statements didn’t change the rules, they emphasized that the government doesn’t take a “zero-tolerance” approach to enforcing anti-money-laundering laws and reserves enforcement action for the most egregious instances of widespread or intentional wrongdoing, such as recent fines related to movement of drug-cartel money. Regulators resolve about 95% of compliance failures without penalties, three senior Treasury officials said in the blog post, in which they also said that banks don’t have to vet the customers of their foreign-bank customers.
Cycling the Americas on a Tandem Bicycle - The Random Way Down, 6min. Sam and Julie leave the state of Veracruz behind them and head south through Tabasco and Chiapas.
Mechanical problems see them stuck in Palenque for 2 weeks before crossing the border into the hot and sweaty jungles of Guatemala.
From there they head to Belize for some quality beach time and manatee spotting before heading back into Guatemala to conquer the highlands.
Belize, 8min. Christ's Church Whitewater
Belize, 26min. Group presentation about Belize. Presented by a group of scholars from Ecuador at the University of West Indies. Barbados-2016
Clapper Rail at Caye Caulker in Belize on 27 August 2016, 1/2min. An adult Clapper Rail walking through the mangroves at close range.
Gray-crowned Yellowthroat calling on a post in Belize, 1/2min. A juvenile (based on the tapered tips to the rectrices), on the road to Black Rock Lodge, 25 August 2016.
Samuel's Sanctuary Santa Marta, Belize, 4min.
Magnificent Frigatebird soaring at Belize City waterfront, birds-eye view, 1.5min. A juvenile Magnificent Frigatebird (Fregata magnificens) riding the wind outside the Hotel Princess in Belize City, 21 August 2016.
Brown Pelican flying at Belize City waterfront (birds-eye view), 1/2min. A soaring Brown Pelican (Pelecanus occidentalis) at Belize City, 21 August 2016, photographed from the 6th floor of the Belize Princess Hotel.
Culcha Jam, 4.5min. Belize da me country, Belize is me land, that da weh I come from!
Jungle Combat: Back To Belize, 5min. The Infantry Battle School has brought soldiers back to Belize for the first time in five years. The training team which is based in Brecon has spent the past three weeks in the country running the final exercise in the Platoon Commanders Battle Course.
Enviroconnect Belize, 69min. Catch our newest show: Enviroconnect Belize right after the News. Episodes air every Tuesday at 8:00 pm.
Baby shark becomes attached to diver, 1min. This baby nurse shark in Belize becomes curious about a diver and closely checks him out. He then swims under and around the diver before following him over the sea grass through the shallows. He acts more like a lost puppy than a shark. Nurse sharks occasionally follow divers but this one is exceptionally friendly and comfortable being right up close to people.
Belize Diving Caye Caulker and San Pedro, 3min.
Xunantunich Mayan Ruins in Belize!, 4min. Xunantunich Mayan Ruins tour 8/24/16! We enjoyed getting to see this beautiful area up close. We even climbed the main building which was over 130 feet tall and 690 feet above sea level!
The New path - Belize summer 2016, 4min. So happy i was able to go to this amazing country! Thank you everyone who made it one to remember.
Trip to San Pedro, Belize, 4min. Here is a compilation of videos we took in San Pedro on a family vacation. Devices used: DSLR T4i, DJI Phantom 3, and GoPro.