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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
San Pedro Teachers and students march in support of the BNTU
Speaking to The San Pedro Sun about the campaign on the island was SPHS teacher and Staff Representative for the BNTU, Areli Reyes. She indicated that the initiative is not just to join the movement that is taking place countrywide, but to educate the local island population on how important the issue is. “We want the residents on the island to be aware of the situation and have a better understanding. They might be just listening to rumours, or hearing about topic on the social media or TV, but again they might not really know what the real issue is,” said Reyes. “We will be going around visiting different establishments informing everyone what the BNTU movement is all about and what we are demanding.” The Government of Belize sent out a letter on Friday, October 7th, formally requesting BNTU’s President Luke Palacio to return to the negotiating table. It was emphasized in the letter that the Government remains immediately ready to further discuss the good governance agenda and the other issues BNTU has been complaining about.
Missing Person: Naisy Naiady Chi
The San Pedro Police are seeking the public’s assistance in locating 21-year-old Naisy Naiady Chi. She was reported missing by her mother, Norma Rodriguez, on Sunday, October 9th.
According to the police report, Rodriguez, resident of Marina Drive in the DFC area, reported that she had not seen or heard of Chi for two days. She also reported that she last saw her daughter around 7AM before she went to work on Friday, October 7th.
Chi’s best friend informed Rodriguez that she, along with Chi, and another friend went out on Friday night, October 8th to a nightclub. Naisy Naiady Chi is of Hispanic descent, slim built and is five foot and two inches in height.
Anyone who sees Chi or knows of her whereabouts is asked to call Police immediately at 206-2206 or call 911.
25 Years Ago - I Bet You Did Not Know This About Conch
The only thing the San Pedranos and visitors of today know about conch is conch ceviche. However, here are several things you should know that only the older San Pedranos know.
There was a time that when conch was so abundant that you could pick up enough of them right along the beach at knee-deep distance for lunch or supper. If you swam out about 300 feet out into the deep, you could load a dory with some 100 conch in one hour's time.
At that time there were no restrictions on the size of conch, but the islanders never, ever captured small ones because of their abundance. One more thing, conch was very seldom used for ceviche. It was the main ingredient for conch soup, conch chowder, conch fritters which were dishes of the main menu.
Belize Vacation Give-Away on a Postage Stamp
The Belize Tourism Board (BTB) is celebrating World Post Day by giving away a vacation to Belize. October 9, marked World Post Day and the BTB is inviting people from all over the world to send them a postcard. In return, the BTB will not only reply with a postcard from Belize, but will also enter you in a raffle to win a trip for two to Belize.
“We know travelers are very curious about Belize,” said Karen Bevans, Director of Tourism at the Belize Tourism Board. “So we want to connect them directly with warm and friendly Belizeans who know this country best.”
Belize Red Cross Relief for Haiti
Hurricane Matthew has made its mark by being the only hurricane to not lose its force winds even after hitting land. Many Caribbean countries such as Cuba, Haiti, Jamaica, and Bahamas have been affected by the storm.
To give a helping hand to our Caribbean brothers and sisters in Haiti whom have seem to lost about 800 lives and having thousands affected and losing everything, The Belize Red Cross announced that the International Federation of Red Cross and Red Crescent societies have launched an emergency appeal for $6.9 million to provide medical, shelter, water and sanitation assistance to 50,000 people ravaged by the storm in the southwest portion of Haiti.
Misc Belizean Sources
19th National darts men singles winner, 2016!!!
Island Magic Beach Resort in Caye Caulker seeks a qualified FRONT DESK employee
Shifts will be 6am to 3pm some weeks and 2:00pm to 10:00pm some weeks.
Strong interpersonal skills
Strong administrative skills
High level of professionalism
Effective in decision making
Please inbox Alina Saldivar to set up an interview
Caye Caulker Destination Launch
Thursday Oct. 13th, Allan Chan Conference Room
Predusk rush at the Corozal Santa Elena border
Just before nightfall yesterday, thousands of Belizeans returned home after their long Pan American Day holiday weekend across the Mexico border.
Many Belizeans took advantage of Mexico's Riviera Maya slow season promotions in the all-inclusive resorts.
Others ventured in the smaller destinations like Tulum, Puerto Morelos, Isla Mujeres, Cozumel and Mahahual.
We ran into many Belizeans who took the short trip to Chetumal just for food, beverage, shopping and lots of fun.
We hope everyone had fun and that your return across our Santa Elena, Belize border was hassle free.
Belize Fishing Report: Oct 1- Oct 8, 2016
A good solid week of fishing here at El Pescador. With the weather so calm it felt hotter than it was. The fishing gets a little tougher as well as the fish can sense the pressure wave coming off the boat. You could see a tail or a roll a mile away but it gets harder to get close undetected at the same time.
BHA attends Expodestinos 2016 in Mexico City
As a follow-up to last months FAM trip, the Embassy of Belize in Mexico invited the Belize Hotel Association and the Belize Tourism Board to promote Belize in their booth at the ExpoDestinos Mexico 2016 show, that was held in Mexico City on October 1 and 2, 2016. The Belize Hotel Association was represented by its Marketing Director Ms. Tessie Tonaco and the Belize Tourism Board was represented by Ms. Althea Sebastian-Travel Trade Officer and Ms. Jana Puga- Media & Public Relations Officer. ExpoDestinos Mexico 2016 , an annual consumer show, attracted more than 15000 attendees who were looking for vacation destinations and packages for their next holidays. The Belize booth was abuzz with visitors who were very interested in our destination, and inquiring about hotels and transportation options. Their proximity to Belize, and the possibility to receive packages
and information directly from our BHA members, made it a very viable option for their next vacations. In addition, one of the travel agents who was in Belize on the FAM trip last month, Ms. Fernanda Marquez of TravelStore, visited us on Sunday October 2.
The International Tourism and Travel Show- ITTS Montreal
Held on October 21-23 at the Place Bonaventure, Montreal Canada. This three day consumer show welcomes up to 400 exhibitors and partners each year who meet with over 30,000 targeted visitors that have both the desire and the means to travel.
The BHA has participated in the ITTS Montreal event in previous years, and it has proven to be a very successful show. In addition, the BHA has a vested interest in gaining a strong foothold in the Canadian market following the announcement of the new WESTJET flights direct from Canada to Belize, that will commence this October .
PM Writes BNTU and Sets Meeting Date
In a letter dated today, Prime Minister Rt. Hon. Dean Barrow wrote to the BNTU President formally requesting BNTU to return to the negotiating table
TOURISM ARRIVALS CONTINUE TO RISE
e BTB reports that since June of last year, the number of tourists coming to Belize has been steadily increasing. This September saw a dramatic 26.9% increase in tourists compared to September 2015. So far this year, the number of overnight tourists has increased 16.4% compared to last year, and despite fewer cruise ships coming to Belize since Hurricane Earl, even that sector saw a 1.3% increase.
Breast Cancer Awareness Walk
Everyone's invited! Let's spread awareness on breast cancer! All proceeds of this event will go towards the San Pedro Cancer Society.
You can either walk or run! Check out the cool items from the Pink Package! (water bottle, tshirt and a cap + registration included!)
Belize Branch BNTU
Calling all Belize Branch teachers. We assemble at headquarters at 9:00 a.m. tomorrow morning for a day of solidarity. Bring your markers, bristol board and other chart making paraphernalia. Also we get updated on meeting date with PM.
USSOUTHCOM Commander in Belize
On September 28th and 29th, U.S. Southern Command (USSOUTHCOM) Commander, Admiral Kurt Tidd (third from left), came to Belize to meet with senior military and political officials of Belize, including Prime Minister Dean Barrow.
Ms. Asia Gilharry represents Belize in Trinidad & Tobago in the Ms. East Indian Pageant for the Caribbean
COEICH wishes Ms. Asia Gilharry all the best as she represents Belize in Trinidad & Tobago in the Ms. East Indian Pageant for the Caribbean. Thanks to the National Council of Indian Culture in Trinidad & Tobago, Mr. Arun Hochandani, Mr. Surujdeo Mangaroo, & Corozal Community College for supporting this cultural event. The pageant takes place on October 27, 2016.
The BCCI (Belize Chamber of Commerce and Industry) issue statement to the Government of Belize
will be proposed and voted on. Both resolutions seek for a one day shut down if certain demands are not met by the Barrow
BCCI is the largest private sector membership based organization in Belize and according to its website it represents approximately 316 businesses across the country.
BCCI's primary objectives are to foster the economic growth and social well being of the nation through the free enterprise system at all levels, by promoting and protecting, both nationally and internationally, commerce, and all sectors of industry which includes agri-business, tourism and manufacturing, the professions
and the trades;To continually strive to enhance the Chamber's ability to better serve its members whilst operating as a self-sustaining, non-profit, non-political organization.
Ecumenical Service and Candle Light Vigil in Corozal
BNTU Corozal Town Branch is inviting all Corozaleños to an Ecumenical Service and Candle Light Vigil to be held tomorrow Wednesday, October 12th at 5:30 P.M. The Candle Light Vigil will begin at Miami Beach in front of St. Paul's Anglican School and will end at the Central Park.
Parents, teachers, students, youth, and everyone who loves this community is invited to join.
Teachers in Corozal
While protesters in Belize City this morning, agitated against the teachers for maintaining their standoff, teachers from our Corozal Community engaged in various civic activities, including assisting the Belize Red Cross, Corozal Town Library and picking up garbage off our streets, playgrounds and parks.
For this, we share our deep appreciation to our beloved Corozal teachers and volunteers who came out, despite the rainy weather.
We caught up with this group of teachers at the Corozal Round House, cleaning the beach and surrounding areas, while other groups were working in different areas at the same time.
Keep up the struggle, we stand shoulder to shoulder with your call for righteousness, good governance and salary adjustment.
Corozal Sugar Cane Producers Association works with youthhttps://www.facebook.com/permalink.php?story_fbid=1808737352675965&id=1425967307619640
The Corozal Sugar Cane Producers Association in conjunction with the Ministry of Agriculture holds seminar on Capacity Building measures by engaging the youth through agrobusiness.
Congratulations to all the participants and the CSCPA for empowering our youth.
Intermagia Magic Tour 2016
The 2016 Intermagia Magic Shows are this weekend, at the Octavia Waight Centre. There are 3 shows on Saturday and Sunday, and a special adults only dinner show this Friday. Proceeds go towards local Rotary projects.
"If you missed it last year.....you should make plans to get to the shows this year. There are eight new International Magicians for the show this year! Coming from as far away as Chili for this around the world tour, some of these entertainers have performed in Las Vegas. It is an truly entertaining and thrilling show!
There will be three (3) Family Shows with Matinees on Saturday and Sunday October 15th and 16th. It's a full two hours of laughter and amazingly fun family entertainment!
Rotary Club of San Ignacio has gone so much further this year......in presenting an "INTERNAGIA DINNER SHOW" which is for Adults Only on Friday October 14th starting at 7 p.m."
Cayo Art Festival 2016 Call
The SISE House of Culture is calling all local artists for the Cayo Art Festival. They are looking for arts and crafts to be on display at the festival, which will be on Saturday, December 3rd, at the Cayo Welcome Center. Contact the SISE HoC at 824-0783 for more information.
San Jose Nuevo Palmar Cultural Fiesta
Our Weekend getaway at San Jose Nuevo Palmar Cultural Fiesta - Benque Marimba Youths, Los Hijos Del West.
We thanks the Chair Lady Mrs. Isabella Chi and the community for a warm Northern Love and appreciation towards this richful cultural exchange with the support of our Minister of Culture, Youths & Sports Hon. Elodio Aragon.
WITH OR WITHOUT YOU: BELIZE'S BNTU!
by Bilal Morris.
When the words of the Reverend Dr. Martin Luther King comes back to haunt many of us human beings across this globe that, "silence is betrayal", we begin to find our bearings that the challenge to resist wrong no matter where it is, is to stand on the side of the poor, the oppressed, and dispossessed in any society including Belize. And as Dr. King would say, "injustice anywhere, is injustice everywhere."
The present struggle of resistance by Belize's National Teachers Union, (B.N.T.U), against the Barrow administration and the stream of corruption that has engulfed the Belizean nation state over the three terms of its government has now began to weaken the bonds of what once appeared to be a strong mandate for good governance. It has began to become a show of declining confidence exemplified by the backbone of the Belizean electorate, a strong union that is an amalgamation of teachers, civil society, and the underserved people of Belizean society.
TIDE Fish Festival 2016
Celebrating the conservation efforts happening in Southern Belize!
A Belizean Kriol Krismos Bram
December 15 – December 17 at
Battle Field Park. Creating a wiillingness to protect and preserve our history and culture through music, dancing, story telling, traditional games, food and drinks.
The Belize Creole Brokdong Project
Battle Field Park December 15th to 17th, 2016. A Belize City House of Culture and Downtown Rejuvenation Project Initiative. Creating a willingness to preserve and protect our history and culture through music, dancing, and singing.
Belize City History and Social Studies Competition
Thursday, November 3 at 9:30 AM - 11:30 AM,
Bliss Center for Performing Arts. A Belize City House of Culture and Downtown Rejuvenation Project Initiative to create awareness and willingness to preserve and protect our history and culture among our youths.
Teachers Carry On With Strike, Bolstered by Caribbean Union of Teachers
The countrywide strike by the Belize National teachers Union continued today affecting all church managed and government schools. Thousands of teachers stayed out of the classroom for the fifth day of their strike, and tens of thousands of school children in primary, secondary and tertiary institutions stayed home – as the strike went into its fifth day. And the news tonight is that it's going into day six. That's right, this evening at the BNTU's national headquarters the Belize District President delivered the announcement:…
Kathleen Flowers - President, Belize Branch, BNTU:
"Today's meeting directed them to continue the strike action. The strike continues into Wednesday and we do day by day activities and so because we know we have parents we have students, we have the committee at large that supporting us. We are saying to them we appreciate your support, we love having you on board with us and we ask you to stay the course with us because this strike action is all in the good of our nation."
Luke Lambastes PM For NTUCB Suggestion; PM Proposes Thursday Meeting
And while that was the message today – on Friday the teachers said they would only go back to the table if the Prime Minister wrote them a formal letter asking them to come back. That he did; by 6:00 pm on Friday, the Prime Minister had sent the BNTU a letter. In that letter he asked the BNTU to come back, but under the umbrella of the National Trade Union Congress of Belize – which is also pursuing the good governance agenda.
Well, the BNTU has rejected that, and they want to continue their fight for good governance on their own. To address it directly, the President recorded his own statement over the weekend in which he stated clearly why they aren't prepared to dialog as part of the NTUCB.
It appears to be a direct stinging criticism of the NTUCB when, in that message, he notes that the Prime Minister is trying disarm them. Palacio says, that the Prime Minister, has, quote, "sought home court advantage by kicking the ball into a new playing field, where he hopes it will have a softer landing"
Noble Brothers Protest Teachers
And brothers Fortunato and Alfonso Noble, and Allan Kelly aren't waiting for that meeting; today they went to picket in front of the BNTU Belize City Branch Office.
They picketed the BNTU to say that they are not happy that their children have been forced to stay home due to this strike. We stopped by the 3-man protest to hear directly about that stance, and here's what they had to say:
Alfonso Noble - Protester:
"I have 3 children, my daughter, my oldest is in 6th form, my son is 2nd form at St. John's College and my middle child is in St. Catherine's Academy in 3rd form. Now 6th form my daughter has classes off and on meaning that some classes are held and some are not but by and large she is not in a regular class setting meaning that you go from one class period to another; so basically classes are interrupted. St. John's College, I dropped off my son at school this morning but I doubt they are having classes meaning they are just sitting in the classroom idling doing nothing."
PUP Says Senate Committee "Bogus"
So, while the Noble brothers and the Allan Kelly were out to tell the teachers that their continued strike is bogus, the PUP was also condemning the Government. They say that the Senate probe that is to look into the Immigration Reports from the Auditor General will be one big fiasco.
They released a statement which says, quote, "The PUP is satisfied that the motion in the Senate on September 30th 2016 is invalid for the reasons: The Hon Godwin Hulse, Minister of Immigration voted on the motion when he should have abstained since his involvement in the scandals is a blatant conflict of interest. Minister Hulse's participation in that Senate meeting was unconstitutional as he violated Section 121 of the Belize Constitution. The motion presented by Senator Ashley Rocke was indeed a motion of the Government and was an attempt to deceive the Belizean people and the Senate, that it was a private member's motion. The motion was bogus; the voting was bogus; and the inquiry will be bogus." End quote.
This evening, we spoke with PUP Senator Valerie Woods about it, and here's what she had to say:
Hulse Calls PUP Release "Mischief"
So the PUP have focused in on as UDP Senator Godwin Hulse as two of the three reasons why the motion passed by the Senate on September 30th is invalid. They say Hulse shouldn't have voted on the motion since his involvement makes it a conflict of interest, and, two, that Hulse's participation in that Senate meeting was unconstitutional as he violated Section 121 of the Belize Constitution. And what does Hulse have to say about that? He calls it pure mischief:.
Hon. Godwin Hulse - Leader of Government Business in Senate:
"Political mischief nothing more, nothing less; I am appalled that her majesty's loyal opposition who would form the next government will demean the workings of such a high institution as the Senate in which they serve. How on earth can you suggest that a motion that comes before the Senate that is properly debated, that is voted upon is a bogus motion when all the terms comply with the requirements of the constitution Section 61A. How can you be so abject, downright mean as to suggest that an officer of the Senate in the person of Reverend Senator Ashley Rocke who presented the motion that his presentation was bogus."
Hulse Says Chamber Out Of Line
And Senator Hulse also had a few choice words for his former colleagues at the Chamber of Commerce. He rose to national prominence as a senator for the business community – and he was a former president. But now the chamber is saying the same thing as the opposition: that the Senate Select Committee is bogus. And the chamber says that if they can't get it re-constituted, they're going on a one-day national business shutdown. The Chamber will meet tomorrow to decide on that but Hulse says that they too have it all wrong:…
Hon. Godwin Hulse - Leader of Government Business in Senate:
"I am appalled and surprised at the chamber. This august body on which I serve for many years and held together with some esteemed colleagues to bring it back to an institution of prominence from its dilapidated state in 1994. I was its president and past president; in 2005 and 2007 we went on the streets...."
Chamber Writes To Institute of Accountants
And the Chamber says is also threatening to strike if government doesn’t make immediate breakthroughs on key governance issues, such as the appointment of the 13th senator and the activation of an integrity commission. Of course, as the Chamber well knows, there’s been trouble finding an accountant to serve on the Commission because he or she would have to become a politically exposed person – with the requirement to disclose all their sources of income, among other things. The government hasn’t been able to find one for years, and now the Chamber of Commerce has turned to the place you’d think anyone looking for an accountant would turn to in the first place; that’s the Institute of Chartered accountants. A letter dated Thursday, October 6th asks the president of the institute in suggesting possible candidates to serve on the integrity commission. Those names will be forwarded to the Prime Minister – who – the letter notes can either choose to accept or reject them.
Young Man Killed In Capital
There were 3 murders over the long weekend, two in the west and one in the south. We start off with the murder of a 22 year old man in Belmopan. Ashley Clarke was out with Friends on Friday night but he never returned home. His family and friends went looking for him and found his decomposed body thrown behind a rundown motel on Sunday afternoon at 12:00. Courtney Weatherburne has more on this brutal murder.
Darlene Clarke crumbles in grief as she tries to figure out why anyone would want her â€˜Ash' dead. Her two nieces sit next to her to comfort her but they too are powerless to make the pain go away.
Clarke was last seen on Friday night. He was hanging out here at the market with his friends, taking a few drinks. They then left after 10:30 and went to end their night out at this bar but when it closed at 12:00, they still were not ready to go home.
Clarke and his crew then left the bar and met up here at this sign post to figure out how they will buy more liquor. That's when another friend on a motorcycle passed by and gave Clarke a ride.
Homeless Man Murdered in San Ignacio
And from a merciless bludgeoning of a youth to a senseless stabbing of a homeless man in San Ignacio. Early Saturday morning around 5:45 police found Benjamin Gomez’s body splayed on the bench at a bus stop on Joseph Andrews Drive. Gomez had been stabbed several times to the neck. Police are still trying to figure out what happened because they say there is no evidence to suggest that he was in a fight.
Man Murdered In South
Independence police are also trying to solve the murder of 21 year old Bella Vista villager Edilsar Mendez. He was found in a house in the village with injuries to his face and cut wounds to his throat. Police have one person detained for questioning.
Child Burn Victims Receiving Treatment
Last Friday, two young children were airlifted to Shriners Hospital for Children in Galveston, Texas after receiving major burn wounds to 90% of their bodies. Since then, the children, Ian and Empress, have been getting treatment for infections, surgery to replace their damaged skin, and dialysis while their kidneys recover from the burns. While nothing is for certain, the doctors at Shriners are reaming optimistic about the children's chances. And while Ian and Empress are getting the best treatment possible, they will have to receive treatment for their wounds for the rest of their lives, and donations are needed. Donations can be made to the Burn Victim's Mercy Fund at Belize Bank account 695-01-1-52111.
Brothers Shot In City, One To Head
A man is in critical condition at the KHMH after being shot in the head on Friday night. It happened at the corner of Raccoon and seagull streets, just two blocks from the police station. Brothers 23 year old Angel and 27 year old Florentino Ruiz were both shot by a lone gunman. Angel was shot to the chest and shoulder and Florentino was shot to the head. Today a relative – who lives with them told us what happened - but asked to appear off camera:…
Voice of Family Member - Shooting Victim:
"So when that person come close he took out his gun and fire shots at Angel and I think that when the shot catch Angel then it catch Florentino. I was inside when I hear 3 shot, everybody run outside and when we see that my brother is on floor it was done too late for me to help him to see who shot him so we don't know yet."
"Did Angel or Florentino have anybody who might want to hurt them?"
Voice of Family Member - Shooting Victim:
"No ma'am we no have no problem with nobody, we da person like we stay here; you see everybody works but we don't have no problem with no body, we no know why that person come and do that to our brother in law."
Off Duty Cop, Soldier Shot On Friday Night
That wasn't the only shooting on Friday night; one hour later Southside police would be responding to a shooting – and the victim was one of their own along with a BDF soldier – both of whom were off duty socializing. ACP Chester Williams gave us the rundown on both incidents – starting with the condition of brothers Florentino and Angel:..
ACP Chester Williams - Commander, Southside:
"One was shot to the head and the other one was shot in the lower part of the body. They were taken to the KHMH where they are both admitted, one brother is in a stable condition and the other one is in a critical condition. About an hour thereafter information was received again of shots being fired in the area of Electric Avenue that is in the St. Martin's Depores area and again police responded to that scene and upon arrival they came across 3 persons who were shot; one Imane Palacio who happens to be a police constable who works here at Eastern Division South. There is a guy Romeo Luis who is a member of the Belize Defence Force, he got shot to the leg and there was one Ivan Martinez who was shot to the head. Palacio was shot to the abdomen and left leg. All person are admitted to the hospital in a stable condition."
Coast Guard Comes Up with US Donation
The Coast Guard has a new facility on their Headquarters off the George Price Highway, and it was made possible through a generous donation from the United States Government.
The facility is valued at 4.46 million Belizean Dollars, and today, the Coast Guard and the US Embassy held an inauguration ceremony.
We spoke with the Commandant of the Coast Guard about this new structure, which he says will be a multi-purpose facility. He outlined how the Coast Guard intends to use it:
Admiral John Borland - Commandant, Belize Coast Guard:
"This is a multipurpose, multi complex facility. You heard many people say it is a boat maintenance facility but it's a lot more than that. That was the initial intent but it evolved and it developed into being a multipurpose, multi complex facility. So now it's not only serves the purpose for both maintenance and repairs and servicing but also it houses some critical office spaces for the fleet commander, the sector commanders for station Belize City. It burkes which means it sleeps more than 100 people, it has a state of the art conference facility, it has bathroom facilities for all the people and staff that are going to be housed in this building so it's much more than just a maintenance facility. It came about as part of the coast guard strategic planning; it's in the long term part of our plans which is 2015 to 2020."
Ambassador Carlos Ending Brief Stint As Diplomat
We also learnt that today's conversation with Ambassador Carlos Moreno might be one of the last we have with him. That's because sometime early next year, he will be leaving Belize, his term ending the same time President Obama's does. The next US President will appoint a new ambassador which will have to be approved by the US Senate.
As viewers are aware, the US election coming to a feverish pitch right now with less than a month to go, So Moreno, like the rest of that country's electorate, it just watching the clock run out on President Barack Obama's final term in office.
We asked Moreno to comment on what could be his first and only stint as a diplomat:
H.E. Carlos Moreno - Us Ambassador to Belize:
"I serve at the pleasure and under President Obama. So when he leaves office my turn ends. Now whether it ends at the same time it's a matter of negotiation. The new president will have the privelage of appointing a replacement ambassador to Belize, that may take a period of several months depending on the relationship between the new president and which political party controls the United States Senate."
Time For "Time And The River"?
Celebrated Belizean author Zee Edgell released her book “Time and The River” in 2007. It is the story of slavery, rebellions, manumission and the complicated politics of love between slave and master. If all that wasn’t enough, it tackles another thorny issue: freed blacks owning their own slaves. It makes for a complex cocktail of what is called a neo-slave narrative, and perhaps all that attributed to the book being a commercial flop. In the words of author Zee Edgell, “it just fell” and that’s part of the reason she had a sort of re-launch today in connection with the “enSlaved” exhibition now ongoing at the Museum of Belize. She spoke to us about the book’s complex commingling of history and fictional narrative today:
“Time and the River” is Edgell’s fourth and most recent novel. It took 10 years to write and research. Autographed copies are available through NICH.
Tourism Numbers Keep Climbing
The tourism industry is Belize's biggest foreign exchange earners, and at a time when citrus, bananas and shrimp are all suffering downturns, tourism is the only bright spot in an otherwise bleak economy.
The BTB reports that since June of last year, the number of tourists coming to Belize has been steadily increasing. This September saw a dramatic 26.9% increase in tourists compared to September 2015. So far this year, the number of overnight tourists has increased 16.4% compared to last year, and despite fewer cruise ships coming to Belize since Hurricane Earl, even that sector saw a 1.3% increase.
Tourism numbers are expected to continue to increase as direct flights from Toronto to Belize begin next month.
The Integrity Issue
On September 19, National Service Day, the PUP parliamentarians went to the National Assembly in Belmopan to declare their assets to the non-functioning integrity commission. That's the body where all elected officials from parliament, and all the city and town councils, are required to make such filings – just that no one does, because it is non functus. The law was designed on the principle of transparency to ensure that these elected politicians aren't unfairly enriching themselves.
We have since learnt that PUP Senators Eamon Courtenay and Valerie Woods did not join their Opposition colleagues on that date of filing. So, while we had the opportunity today, we asked Woods, why she didn't do so. Here's how that conversation went:
Hon. Valerie Woods - PUP Senator:
"But for myself there's no mal-intent, I have every intention of putting up my report for the integrity commission whether there's one that exists or not I have absolutely nothing to hide. I'm a new comer to this thing it's just a matter of timing for me when that happen but I've assured the party leader that I'll get mines in, that's no big deal for me."
Cops Get Props
It’s rare that we hear of the good that officers do in their line of work, in most cases it’s tainted by complaints, vicious verbal attacks and harsh criticisms of the police department. Well, Eastern Division South is working on changing that negative perspective by awarding officers for their efficient police work. Assistant Commissioner of Police Chester Williams told us that this initiative goes along way.
These award ceremonies are held every 3 months.
Fantasy Five Winner “Noh Watch No Face”
Denbigh Quenton Trimino Jr. a resident from Belmopan City is tonight a $150,000 dollars richer after his Fantasy 5 ticket had the 5 lucky winning numbers. Today Trimino Jr. travelled to Belize City to claim his winnings.
The Public Relations officer for Fantasy 5 explained why they accepted the winner’s request in not showing his face.
The winning numbers were 26, 13, 04, 17, 03 and the letter K
Hon. Hulse Likes COMPOL
Williams got police minister Hulse to lead today's event, and when it was done we asked him what's his take on the police department so far – since he took up the portfolio 10 weeks ago:…
Hon. Godwin Hulse - Leader of Government Business in Senate:
"The projection will be basically serious crime reduction that has got to be the goal and to do that there's some elements and units we have to strengthen. It is my firm belief that crime right now is being to be paying and we need to reverse that where crime doesn't pay. To do that we have to be able to take it to its end game of incarceration and due punishment for various crimes as the law prescribes."
"Are you satisfied with the current commissioner of police?"
Hon. Godwin Hulse - Leader of Government Business in Senate:
"Not looking at the office we're working with him quite well at this time. I understand he is a very young man and he has some time to go but as time goes along of course all positions do change, people are promoted, people are removed; so far so good."