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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
Acquafino Resort donates to Miss World Belize Iris Salguero
President of Acquafino Island Resort and Spa, William Narod, made a donation of $500 to Miss World Belize 2016-2017 and former Miss San Pedro 2015-2016, Iris Salguero on Thursday, November 17th. Salguero has been rigorously preparing to compete in the ‘Miss World Pageant’ on December 18, 2016. The competition will take place in Washington D.C, USA at the Gaylord National Resort & Convention Centre, where current Miss World, Mireia Lalaguna of Spain, will crown her new successor.
Salguero thanked Narod for his donation. “I feel really grateful and thankful because anything I get that will help me is appreciated. It has been a just a month since I won Miss World Belize and I haven’t had much time to prepare. It’s been really expensive when it comes to my wardrobe and travelling,” said Salguero.
Ambergris Caye celebrates Garifuna Settlement Day
Early in the morning of the 19th, the traditional ‘Yurumei’ took place; this is the re-enactment of the arrival of the Garifuna to Belize. The singing and drumming of the group could be heard clearly as they reached the beach via boats. Upon disembarking, the group marched towards to the San Pedro Roman Catholic Church for a mass of blessing. Shortly after, a parade took place through the main streets of San Pedro town. Many residents came out of their homes to take a look as the group paraded by singing and drumming. At 11AM traditional Garifuna food was available at the park for purchase. Many gathered to enjoy some delicious hudut, conch soup, tapou and even rice and beans. The celebration continued until late in the evening, when once again, Caribbean Kings and Punta Boys kept the music going and had everyone dancing.
Letters To The Editor:
Life After Trump’s Election and What it Might Mean for Belize
There are many more questions raised than answered after the US Presidential election and what they will mean for Belize, the Belizean Diaspora and our neighbors in Central-America. Most of us in Belize have family over there. Many are there as ‘illegal aliens’ and many legal immigrants are considering to move back home because of the racism. At least one of my sons is talking about that. One of his best friends born in the US of ‘illegal immigrant’ parents is going through the nightmare of having to see his parents being shipped off back to Mexico who have-not been back there for 25 years. They were even trying to find out if they could legally adopt his father and mother to be able to stay together as a family. That sad reality is probably very real too for a lot of our Belizean family all over the USA. Can we now expect a lot of Belizeans returning home? And what will this mean for our society?
Signing of Maya 2020 Project Agreement for Belize
The Belize High Commission in London is pleased to announce the signing of an agreement between SELVANA Ltd, a UK-based company and Friends for Conservation and Development, a Belizean NGO, setting out the delivery of activity on the Maya 2020 project. The Maya 2020 Project is a collaboration between FCD and Selvana Ltd with the aim of supporting the sustainable forest conservation objectives of FCD as the only non–governmental organization with an assertive management presence in the park.
Misc Belizean Sources
12-year-old Chelsea Lara missing
The San Pedro Police are seeking the public's assistance in locating a missing child here in San Pedro Town. 12-year-old Chelsea Lara, student of San Pedro Roman Catholic school left home yesterday (Sunday, November 20th) and has not been seen yet. Anyone with information on her whereabouts is to contact the police station at 206-2022.
Government of Belize Signs Letter of Agreement to Finalize USD $300,000 Readiness Grant with Green Climate Fund
Minister Omar Figueroa, as the Head of Belizean delegation and the Minister with responsibilities for Climate Change, met with the Green Climate Fund (GCF), represented by Mr. Ousseynou Nakoulima, Director of Country Programming on the occasion of the 22nd meeting of the Conference of Parties to the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change in Marrakech, Morocco to sign a letter of agreement to finalize a USD $300,000 Readiness Grant agreement between the Government of Belize
(GOB) and the GCF.
The Readiness Grant will allow the GOB to strengthen the capacity of its National Designation Authority, the liaison between the Fund and Government of Belize, as well as identify priority programs
for funding from the GCF.
San Pedro Blood Drive
Saturday, November 26 at 9 AM - 3 PM.
Dr. Otto Rodriguez Polyclinic II. *No appointment necessary
For questions contact: or [email protected] [email protected]
Before donating, rest, eat a good meal and drink healthy fluids. Refrain from any medications for 72 hours prior.
Rotaract Benque Visits Octavia Waight
The Benque Rotaractors teamed up with Ka'ana, and visited Ocatavia Waight Center to have some fun with the older generation. Thanks, Rotaract, and Ka'ana!
"The Rotaract Club of Benque Viejo visited the elders at Octavia Waight Center on a conjoint project with KA’ANA Resort. The elders were given snacks and drinks, and members of the club also interacted with them by playing games, music, and ladies got their nails painted."
BELIZE FISHING REPORT, Weeks of Nov.6th – Nov. 12th, 2016
Grand Slam for Carolyn!! A lovely quiet week here at the lodge with some great folks taking advantage of the two for one prices (twofer promotion) this fall. Fishing is great, and the weather is great, why not!
Vehicle line to the Belize Mexico border
3 miles long queue at the Corozal, Santa Elena border.
El Dia de Finados
The San Pedro House of Culture held El Dia de Finados. It was a lovely night with prayers , hymes & the rosary. We were treated with lots of delicious food, desserts & drinks. Our departed ones were well honored.
Looking for a full time cashier to work at Rapidito Construction Depot
Minimum 6th form degree required, experience in computer systems, great customer service skills. Serious inquiries please contact 206-0083 to fill out an application and set up your interview
Ministry of Health Continues to Strengthen its Regulatory Functions in the Pharmaceutical Industry
In an ongoing effort to ensure that the highest quality of pharmaceuticals are available within the Belizean market, the Ministry of Health has introduced new standards which have been presented to the House of Representatives and are awaiting final approval to the Food and Drugs Act Chapter 291 of the substantive Laws of Belize.
The Ministry is currently working with pharmacies and pharmaceutical wholesalers and importers in order for them to adhere to these standards. These are a part of a shared and agreed requirement done in partnership with providers on the granting of license that allows them to conduct this business under the law.
The Ministry continues to work towards setting up Standard Operating Procedures and Monitoring and Evaluation Mechanisms that will allow for a functional Supply Chain Management System. The revised bill presented in August will allow the Ministry of Health to enforce firmer penalties on persons/businesses that are in contravention of the law.
SPTC donates to San Pedro Cancer Society
On Friday, November 18, 2016, Mayor Daniel Guerrero and Councilor Ruben Gonzalez presented a cheque of $3645.25 to the president of the San Pedro Cancer Society, Mr. Gonzalo Muñoz and its members, Miguel Perez, Lucy Muñoz and Alyssa Muñoz. The money presented to the San Pedro Cancer Society was from the Breast Cancer Awareness Walk/Run that was held on October 29 of this year. Thank you to everyone who participated in this event! Let's make it bigger next year!
Happy Garifuna Settlement Day 2016
Celebrations in San Pedro
Health screenings at the SPTC
The Washington University of Health and Science will be conducting free health screenings at the San Pedro Town Council. Stop on by to get checked. Below is the schedule:
•Monday, Nov. 21, 3pm – 7pm
•Saturday, Nov. 26, 10am – 12pm & 2pm – 4pm
•Monday, Nov. 28, 3pm – 7pm
•Saturday, Dec. 3, 10am - 12pm & 2pm - 4pm
•Wednesday, Dec. 7, 10am – 4pm
LEADER OF THE OPPOSITION WRITES TO PM BARROW
John Briceno sent a letter to the PM to ask him to reconsider the Government's decision to deduct the salaries of teachers who participated in the BTNU strike.
Briceno calls GOB's decision inconsiderate and disturbing.
Cayo Art Festival 2016
The 2016 Cayo Art Festival will be at the Cayo Welcome Center on Saturday, December 3rd. There will be fun for everyone, and quite a few cultural presentations. Cayo artisans will be there showing off their wares. There will be clowns and an art area to entertain the kids.
FCD Tracks Newsletter
Our No. 25th FCD Tracks Newsletter is available at FCD’s website: www.fcdbelize.org Thank you for the support.
Pay Pronto! Court Tells GOB To Pay The Strike Teachers
On Friday, we told you about the injunction that the Belize National Teachers Union was attempting to get against the Ministry of Education. They were trying to stop the Government from deducting money out of the November paycheck of 1,500 plus teachers who went on the 11-day strike in October. Well, even though those deductions are already finalized, the Chief Justice has granted that injunction against the Government. So, tonight, those strike teachers need not be worried about a "mawga" Christmas; they will get their full paycheck for November.
This afternoon, the Chief Justice handed down his ruling in a private case management session in chambers. When the hearing was done, BNTU's attorney, Eamon Courtenay explained:
Eamon Courtenay, attorney for BNTU:
"The honorable Chief Justice handed down his decision a short while ago in which he granted the Belize National Teachers Union and Miss Guerra the injunction that we sought. He found that we had an arguable case and that there is a real likelihood that we will succeed at trial and he felt that the balance of conveyance was in favor of the teachers, that the teachers should not be denied the enjoyment of their Christmas, because the government has taken the very mean and, I would say decision, to attempt to process the payments and then to come to court and say to court that they can't pay it on time. CJ said that more people will be affected if they don't pay, that the people who have to do the overtime to correct the situation. So the teachers need to be paid and paid on time."
BNTU Not Ready To Work Holidays
So, while the litigation is about to start over who can dock the teachers' pay due to industrial action, the teachers union is also disagreeing with the Government's plan to make up the 11 days of lost classes.
As we told you two weeks ago, the Ministry intends to cut this year's Christmas break short by 4 days. So, instead of classes resuming on January 9, students and teachers are being expected to show up on January 3rd, 4th, 5th and 6th. For the Easter holiday, classes will continue into April 10th, and 11th. That's the method that the Ministry wants to employ to make up those lost school days. This evening, the BNTU President told us that, according to the Education Rules, the Ministry is not allowed to just arbitrarily take away teachers' holiday days. Here's how he explained it:
Luke Palacio, President - BNTU:
"The education rules are clear; the education rules says that the teachers of this country should be on vacation for the Christmas period, Easter period and in the month of July. So, again for the minister and his chief education officer to try and force our teachers to go to school on those days when they should be on holidays..."
BDF Volunteer Accused of Hit and Run Death In Libertad
A BDF Volunteer is accused of killing a man and driving off on Saturday night. 24 year old Norman Slusher, of San Roman Village has been slapped with five charges after he allegedly knocked down and killed a resident of San Narciso Village on Saturday night.
Slusher was driving this Nissan Sentra with Orange Walk plates when he knocked down 39 year old Leonel Martinez who was walking down the highway around 6:30 on Saturday. Slusher did not stop to render aid but 36 hours later, he turned himself into the Police this morning.
They charged him with Causing Death by Careless Conduct, Manslaughter by Negligence, Driving without due care and attention, failing to report an accident and failing to stop and render aid. Slusher goes to court tomorrow.
Police Capsize, Civilian Loses His Life
The hazards of police work led to a civilian drowning last week. Last week Thursday, a pair of southern police was headed to a Caye in the Stann Creek District to look for a murder suspect. Corporal Carlos Galvez, and PC David Mejia were joined by boat captain George Lopez and Linsford Locayo a security Guard - who was with his wife and their nine month old daughter. Nearing the Tobacco Caye Range, their boat was hit by a massive swell which caused it to capsize. All of the passengers were dashed out of the boat. The police Corporal managed to swim to get help, but when that help came, Locayo had disappeared. His body was not found until Saturday evening on the North-west end of the Tobacco Caye Range. A post mortem confirmed that he died from drowning. The suspect has still not been captured.
"Buen Fin" Causes 15K Rush To Border, Major Delays
This past weekend in Chetumal - and all over Mexico - retail stores observed what's known as "Buen Fin". It's sort of like the Mexican version of Black Friday - where there are once a year sales and deals at participating stores. So, naturally, Saturday being a holiday and all, many Belizeans made their run for the border to cash in on those deals. But…the thousands who travelled on Sunday ran into a major traffic jam - before they even got to the border. Traffic on the Belize side was backed up for miles, and for hours - some travellers report being stuck for over two hours.
Cruise Ship Blues Hit The South Early
Last week Thursday, Norwegian Cruise Line's multi-million dollar cruise port on Harvest Caye officially opened with the arrival of the Norwegian Dawn. Our news team gave you a long distance look at that opening, and the Government Press Office, which was the only media entity invited, provided an on-the-ground look of what the island getaway looks like today.
So, Cruise Tourism has arrived in the south, and the Harvest Caye business pie is being shared up among the local tour operators. But one local operator in Big Falls village who had hoped to cash in, says he got cut out, and now Norwegian's choice contractor has taken his idea, and his location, leaving him with a bitter taste and a bum investment.
It's the Cruise Tourism Blues, which we've heard from so many small operators over the years - as the multinational rolls through, gobbling up, or marginalizing everything in its way. Andrew Caliz has learned fast the ruthless rules of the cruise business and today he crystallized the moral of a story with no happy ending:...
Moreira For St. Margaret's Marijuana
Last week we told you about the 25 pounds of weed that Belmopan police got when they set chase after a Benque Viejo taxi.
The cops had to chase the cab from Roaring Creek on the western Highway to St Margaret's on the Hummingbird. They got the weed but the driver and his passenger escaped. On Friday night, at 8:30 p.m. police found the alleged driver; he is 43-year-old Bryan Moreira of Chaa Creek Road, San Ignacio. He was arrested and charged for "Drug Trafficking" and has been remanded until January.
Bowers The Boxer Burnt Out In Blaze
For most of the 70s and 80s, Carlton Bowers was a celebrated welterweight boxer, and at one point, he was the Caribbean Junior Welterweight Champion, and even brought home a Bronze medal from the Central American Games in 1977. Bowers, who now sells paletas, lives on Red Bell Lane in Belize City, where on Friday night, his house burned down. We met Bowers at the site of his old home, where he told us about what happened.
Carlton Bowers - House fire victim:
"I went out for one of my friends to buy something, because she came to me and she drove to me and said "I heard your house is burning down back there" and then I came, and when I got here everything was already burned. The fire was already out, and I met the firemen, and they questioned me about the size of the house and different things."
Alex Courtenay, 7News:
"Do you think that this is an accident, or do you know of anybody who would maybe want to burn your house down or anything like that?"
Carlton Bowers - House fire victim:
"Well I would say probably an accident because I don't have any, what you call it? I don't have anybody that's against me, you know. There's nobody against me, it's an accidental thing or something like that."
Man Gets 10 Years Added To 14 Year Sentence
In April 2013, a police mobile patrol stopped and searched Joseph O'Brien when he detoured from the George Price Highway into the Lord Ridge Cemetery after seeing the vehicle coming towards him. Police found a rusty .38 caliber revolver with no ammunition and arrested and charged him for possession of a firearm without a gun license.
Initially, he pleaded not guilty and got bail -but then he got sentenced to 14 years for the robbery of the Golden Corn Tortilla Factory in September 2013.
So today - while serving that sentence he appeared in court again for the firearm where he changed his plea from not guilty to guilty. He was sentenced to 10 years in prison. O'Brien is to serve this sentence concurrently with his ongoing14 year sentence.
Shaquawn Sick Of Cops
Tonight, Belize City resident Shaquawn Almendarez continues to be aggrieved by a police search which he says amounts to police harassment. Now, if his name sounds familiar, it's because he and his family made the news 2 weeks ago after the K-9 unit and the South Side Strike Team found 8 ounces of marijuana in their Electric Avenue home.
Since then, he says he has had visits from the Anti-Drug Unit, which he says were oppressive and demeaning. He visited our office last week Wednesday to say that the search happened earlier that day.
He narrated the experience:
Shaquawn Almendarez, Claims Police Harrassment:
"This morning they came at my yard and they put cuff on me again and they came last week Tuesday and charged all of us for drug trafficking that they planted on us. They put the cuff one me and took me in my neighbor's yard and beat me with a shovel. They went and came back to my yard and continue to dig. They got a call that said there was a home invasion. Four police men came. They left for me and the other 2 went. I went into my house to use the bathroom. They went after me and broke down my door, pull me out and started to kick me and bring me back down stairs and they held me until the mobile came back."
Gender Based Violence, The Reality
Today the Office of the Special Envoy for Women and Children, the National Women's Commission and the UNDP, hosted the first student discussion of Gender Based Violence. The students discussed gender relations, and the widespread violations of human rights for victims of gender based violence. We spoke to two of the event's organizers, Special Envoy for Women and Children, Kim Simplis Barrow and Cynthia Williams, the Human Services Coordinator at the Women's Department, about the importance of the discussions.
Kim Simplis-Barrow - Special Envoy for Women and Children:
"Today was really wonderful day to really sit and listen to what these young students have to say and their perceptions of what gender based violence is. It was real, it was raw, to the point, in your face, and that's what we want. We want to know how much do they know, and how willing are they to be a part of the elimination of gender based violence. As you could see it was quite evident that they know a lot more than we thought that they knew. Obviously gender based violence is prominent in our society, and a lot of time we turn a blind eye, a lot of times we just pretend say it doesn't exists, it's not happening to me, and I think this society is ready speak up."
Trio Arson Investigation Could Implicate BDF Retiree
Last week we told you about the massive fire in Trio village where five homes were burnt down, and another hauled down in a deliberate and unapologetic act of destruction. The ruthless act was pulled off on Thursday by five men who showed up in a Mahindra pickup truck. They were allegedly acting on behalf of a Chinese landowner who had purchased the land where 5 farmers had been squatting, they claim for decades. Well, tonight Belize District police have reportedly caught one of the alleged arsonists. Reports tell 7News that he has told police just who was involved in the fire starting - and the list he gave includes a former high-ranking BDF officer who retired some years ago. We'll have more on this developing story tomorrow.
PM Pays Respect To Garinagu
All roads led to the culture capital in Dangriga for Settlement day on Saturday the 19th. For Prime Minister Dean Barrow - he has to also use the opportunity stock up on political capital since Dangriga has a UDP Mayor in Francis Humphreys and a UDP Area Representative in Frank "Pawpa" Mena. And more than just pay tribute to the Garinagu, the Prime Minister also gave a boost to the National Garifuna Council:...
Rt. Hon. Dean Barrow, Prime Minister
"Culture encompasses the greatest achievements of our planet. That it is what over the ages has lifted mankind and womankind from the status of animals. Accordingly Belize like every other ocuntry on earth is proud of its culture. And we have been particularly blessed in this regard, to have inherited, developed and perfected a culture that has many sources."
Taiwan Ambassador, A Percussive Plenipotentiary
And while the PM was doing the giving, the new Taiwanese Ambassador Charles Liu was also thanks for his contribution. That came in the form of solar powered lights for the Alejo Beni park. Area Rep Mena gave him the gift of a drum, and, no doubt, feeling the vibes of the day the Ambassador tried a thing!:...
More From Griga
And while the Ambassador showed some passion for the "primera" drum, he didn't have quite the finish to play to the accompany for the Jancunu dance that went along with the official ceremony.
We leave you with that tonight, enjoy and join me back here tomorrow...