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Today's Belize News: June 3, 2017 #523884
06/03/17 07:11 AM
06/03/17 07:11 AM
Joined: Oct 1999
Posts: 59,369
oregon, spr
Marty Offline OP

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Marty  Offline OP


FOR TODAY'S BELIZE WEATHER, CLICK HERE

Click for our Daily Tropical Weather Report.

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, and other specials


The San Pedro Sun

2017 Hurricane Season is expected to be very active
The 2017 Atlantic Basin Hurricane Season officially started on Thursday, June 1st, and meteorologists are predicting a very active season. A total of fourteen named storms, are expected this season, with seven turning into hurricanes and three of them expected to turn into major hurricanes. The hurricane season runs from June first through November each year, and according to Chief Meteorologist at the Belize Meteorology Service, Catherine Cumberbatch, the predictions are alarming. Normally the season consists of about 12 named storms, four hurricanes and two major ones. “There were two main ingredients that were factored into coming up with an above normal forecast,” she explains. “One was the Enzo Paci Phenomenology in the Central Pacific, which defines if we are going to have an El Niño event or not. Second was the warmness of the North Atlantic Ocean.”

San Pedro Tour Guide Association holds general meeting
In an effort to strengthen its association, provide members with important updates, and discuss future projects, the San Pedro Tour Guide Association (SPTGA) held a general meeting on Tuesday, May 30th. SPTGA President Billy Leslie welcomed more than 50 guides at the San Pedro Lions Den, stating that general meetings are imperative for members to engage in. Before a presentation from Oceana in Belize, Leslie explained that the SPTGA has now partnered with Oceana to ensure that jobs, livelihoods, and Belize’s future can be kept in a pristine condition.

San Pedro Police Officers’ court trial for Central Park shooting adjourned
On Wednesday, May 31st, police officers Norman Coye and Darnell Madrill, charged for the shooting at Central Park, faced their first court session at the San Pedro Magistrate Court. Their case was briefly reviewed, but due to incomplete reports from the prosecutor, it was adjourned to Thursday, June 22nd, for a full disclosure of their case. During the court session on Wednesday, no witnesses or victims were present. Coye and Madrill could face up to seven years in jail if found guilty of their offenses.

Ambergris Today

Rainy Season Opens, Public Precautions Given To Prevent Dengue And Zika
The Ministry of Health reminds the public to be aware of the dangers of Dengue and Zika that as we enter the rainy season. These infectious diseases are transmitted by the bite of Aedes aegypti and Aedes albopictus mosquitoes. Both mosquitoes are most active in early morning and late afternoon.

Misc Belizean Sources

mzz

Department of the Environment Photo Challenge!
Enter our PHOTO CHALLENGE: #BelizeWithNature

New GOB Controlled Fuel Prices
Effective Date: 02nd June 2017. Regular and Kerosene stay the same, Premium (-59 cents) and Diesel (-38 cents) down.

Accident in San Iggy
The San Ignacio Police Formation very quiet about the cause of their police issues pick up crashing into a lamppost and a brown pick up crashing into the property of the Shell Gas Station. The incident occurred after 1 a.m. but the details are yet to be uncovered.

Full Moon Concert
June 16, 7pm at Queen Elizabeth Park. Make thisb a date. Surpassing Silence Rock Band promises to put on a grear show for the entire family. Dnt miss out!!!

Nail Technician Training June 5-28
BTEC proudly brings to you another round of Job Preparedness Trainings. This time we're doing 4 at once! Check out the flyers attached and see what suits you or click the link below to see the promo videos. And don't worry...we've extended the sign up date til 12 midday on June 5th so there's still time!!!

Cayo Day Celebrations
The 1st annual Cayo Day was a blast for everyone. "Ziplining! They had ziplining across the Macal! Wow! Great time at the 1st Cayo Day. Thanks, New Sensation Band and Tanya Carter!"

CTO Finalists in Media Awards Competition
The Caribbean Tourism Organization (CTO) Announces the Finalists in Media Awards Competition and an article about Belize was shortlisted in the category: "Best Feature by a foreign Journalist that appeared in US Media."

Spotlight on Volunteers!
Ms. Martha has been volunteering at Southern Regional Hospital for 17 years! She is volunteering as part of the Beyond the Horizon: 2017-Belize team to check in patients. THANK YOU to Ms. Martha and all the dedicated volunteers who work tirelessly to make the Beyond the Horizon partnership a success.

New docking facitity at the Lamanai Archaeological Reserve
Hon Patrick Faber, Minister of Education, Youth, Sports and Culture was on site yesterday for the official opening of the new docking facitity at the Lamanai Archaeological Reserve. This new facility will make for a safer and much more enjoyable visit by those who access the site via the New River Lagoon.

MUSEUM MAY REVIEW: Museum of Belize's Open Day-International Museum Day 2017 (May 19th, 2017)
As follow-up to May 18th, 2017 (International Museum Day), the next day (May 19th, 2017),further to our topic 'A History of Execution and the 'Death Penalty' in association with this year's theme for IMD and also coinciding with the anniversary of inmate 'Victor Lopez's' execution at the Her Majesty's Prison on May 19th,1930. The Museum of Belize (NICH) held an 'Open Day' event with video presentation on the 'Death Penalty' in Belize and educational booths with representation from Community-Based organizations/projects such as; CYDP, YCT, BTEC and the Museum of Belize. Students not only learned about the history of the death penalty in Belize but also services provided by these entities as positive alternatives to the crime element in Belize and also played interactive games and won prizes.

INTRODUCTION OF BILL PAYMENT ID SYSTEM
Developers and investors are hereby advised that it is their legal obligation to contact the Department of the Environment (DOE) prior to commencement of any project/undertaking to initiate the environmental screening process in order to address possible environmental issues associated with their project. The DOE takes this opportunity to once more remind developers and companies who have received Environmental Clearance and have signed an Environmental Compliance Plan (ECP) with the DOE, to be current with the environmental monitoring fee as per Section 4.0 of the ECP.

The Maya Spa Experience Brand Competition is here!
BELTRAIDE, in collaboration with the Belize Spa and Wellness Association, is hosting a nationwide “Maya Spa Experience” Branding Competition. Belizean nationals and residents, who are interested in participating, are asked to form teams of 4, of which 1 member must be a certified massage therapist. Interested teams must register by 14th June.

Bush fire in Ladyville smokes out neighborhood and "Our Lady of the Way" school in Ladyville, Belize District

Belize Immigration and Nationality notice
Notice:The persons appearing on the following lists, by country of origin, who applied for Belizean Nationality are asked to kindly contact the Belize Immigration and Nationality Department, Customer Service Desk on 822-3860, or visit the Department on any weekday between the hours of 1:00 p.m and 5:00 p.m.

Corozal Bay Sailing Club Car Wash Today

5 Day Audio/Visual Production Workshop
The National Institute of Culture and History (NICH) and the Belize International Film Festival is pleased to partner with Professor, Steve T. Berry to present a 5 Day Audio/Visual Production Workshop for Secondary and Tertiary Level Students. Designed as an introductory course in film, participants will be provided with the basic technical, procedural, and conceptual foundations to begin training in the art of video production. Students will become familiar with the essential terminology, standard production practices, and basic design and operations of the post-production process.

OFFICIAL FLYER for the Caye Caulker Lobster Fest 2017
Starting with the Miss Lobster Fest Pageant on June 30th!! Don't miss the special performance by Supa G on Saturday & Sunday! Music by Belize's top DJs - DJ Odyssey The Musical Prodigy, Khris Alexander Rosado, Evolution Sounds - Pinky Evolution Boo, Kirk K-mix Evolution Enwright, Justin Jago Williams, Fyah Jaro, Djras Fyahstatah, Julian Blue Wave Pacheco, Sounds by Blue Wave Sounds - Caye Caulker

New docking facility at Lamanai
My little friends from Indian Church Government School help me inaugurate the new docking facility at Lamanai Archeological Site

Channel 7

Rochelle Chan Denies Alvarine's Allegations, Sorta
It was the week when Minister Edmond Castro's visas were cancelled, the week when 3 UDP Ministers and the Prime Minister said they wouldn't have done what John Saldivar did with the Coast Guard vessels…but Alvarine Burgess still made the biggest news when she named names at the Senate Inquiry into Immigration irregularities. She said that she had contracted Minister Boots Martinez to do immigration business for her, and that Minister Erwin Contreras did it for free because he is a family friend. We stress, both Martinez and Contreras have flatly denied doing any business with her. But one other name she did call is police officer Rochelle Chan. She said that he was the one who put her unto the immigration hustle, the one who had the names and the connections - including Chan's brother in law, Elvin Penner. Now, on Wednesday he told us she was lying, but as the supposed mastermind, this police officer of 23 years has been under immense pressure. Today, he agreed to give us a statement, or a few statements, but no interview, per se. He said he would reserve his response to her direct allegations. Here's how he put it:...

Boots Says The Embassy Wants To See Him, But Hear Why
And while Chan says he never got called into the Embassy, Minister Boots Martinez says he does have a call pending at the Embassy. But it's not about his visa; it's to come in for a green card. He says his mother had applied for him many years ago and he was recently notified that it had been approved:... Jules Vasquez, 7News: "Is it something that concerns you that someday they might call you and say 'well we will rescind, revoke your visa'." Hon. Anthony Martinez: "It don't matter me sir. What would concern me they would revoke it for malicious reasons. I have right in my bag there. I have papers right in my bag from the US Embassy - my green card came up you know. My green card has come up. I have not full out the form and visit the embassy with the completed form. I am not certain if I want to be a resident at this point of the United States of America, although I am retiring. I did it, I did the filing, my mom filed for me, but I did it for the sake of my children. I have the papers right there. For me it doesn't really matter."

Drunk, No Insurance, No License Driver Crashed Into Cop Truck In Front of Police Station
Today, this picture of a banged up police pickup truck, mashed into a lamp-post in front of the San Ignacio police station started circulating on social media - and many probably just shook their heads, wearily concluding,"there they go again - destroying police property." But there are two sides to a story and the story of how that truck ended up smashed into the lamp-post, started this morning at two minutes past midnight. This security video shows a Chevy Silverado pick up barreling around the corner at Columbus Park. It rammed headlong into the police F-150 pickup that was parked in front of the police station - sending it crashing into the lamp-post. From there the Silverado turned into the street where the driver and the passengers got out and ran, and left the truck rolling - as it crashed directly into the fuel pump at the adjacent Shell gas station.

GOB Makes Plans To Tackle Ashcroft Alliance Legal Costs
This afternoon, Prime Minister Dean Barrow gathered his most senior advisers to discuss their strategy to deal with the Ashcroft Alliance's legal fees connected to the BTL acquisition. As we told you last night, a very big legal bill is coming. Well, we understand that Government received the full and final total from the Ashcroft Alliance yesterday evening - and while we don't know what it is at this time, we repeat that it is in the tens of millions of dollars. But, to clarify what we first reported last night, those legal costs are not on top of the acquisition costs: they are claimed against the 60% of the entire settlement figure. That 60% represents the amount owed through the accommodation agreement.

Cops Gone Wild On Mayflower?
Right now, Belize City Residents of the Mayflower area are very upset with police for their reckless use of deadly firearms over the weekend. On the other hand, the cops say they were defending themselves after a resident of the area, Kendis Flowers opened fire on them. Today, Flowers, was charged with 2 counts of attempted murder when he appeared today before the Chief Magistrate, Anne Marie Smith. Flowers was remanded into custody. But there are two very different sides to this story. Here's what we have learned. Some time around 4 a.m. last Sunday morning, Kendis FLOWERS and his cousin were in front of their house on Mayflower Street, after a night out.

8 Stranded At Sea After Boat Capsized, 7 Are Found
Tonight one person is missing at sea after a tragic and terrifying boating accident. Eight Belizeans were travelling from Calderitas, to Sarteneja when their boat overturned. The passengers, all from Sarteneja, were thrown into the sea and had to find a way to survive for 10 hours at night in the open waters. It happened at around 8:00 and early this morning, nine vessels set off to search for them. Luckily seven of the eight were found alive after an hour of searching. They were holding unto improvised flotation devices, and a few were able to find lifejackets. But they had become dehydrated, and debilitated by extreme fatigue.

Special Constable Coba Killed
Keeping it in the north, there is another death to report. Last night after 10:00, police special constable 33-year-old Rigoberto Coba was killed in a motorcycle accident. It happened on one of the back roads near the BSI compound sometime last night. Coba who is from the village of Guinea Grass was riding his motorbike when he slammed into a trailer which was parked on the side of the road. He died on the spot.

Police Firearms Examiner Convicted
Tonight, the Police Department is shrouded in scandal after one of their senior firearms examiners, Orlando Vera, was convicted of acting in a corrupt manner. The Chief Magistrate has found him guilty of offering to tamper with evidence in gun charges against defendants, and now, the cases of gun convictions he was involved in may be thrown into doubt. The criminal trial against him concluded last week before Chief Magistrate Ann Marie Smith. She heard evidence led by DPP Cheryl-Lynn Vidal that between June 1 and July 31 of last year, Vera offered twice to tamper with evidence against Michael Modiri so that Modiri could be acquitted. He was basically offering to take money to make a criminal charge disappear in court.

The Many Denials Of Saldivar's Actions
We all know well the Bible story which tells us that the Apostle Peter denied three times that he knew Jesus after the crucifixion. Well, it's not been quite that for Defence Minister John Saldivar - but something slightly similar happened over the past week when we interviewed four of his Cabinet colleagues - who didn't quite deny him, but said that they wouldn't do what he did. And by that we mean, they wouldn't have used government assets, for transporting a sports team they personally owned.

A Senior Pedophile
Today 65 year old Francisco Figueroa appeared in the Magistrate's Court and was charged with sexual assault. Figueroa is accused of kissing and molesting a six year old girl. He pled not guilty to the charges, but the prosecutor objected to bail on the grounds that Figueroa is a Guatemalan national and is a flight risk. The prosecutor also asked that the age of the victim be taken into consideration, and that Figueroa may interfere with the child or witnesses if released. Chief Magistrate Anne Marie Smith accepted the objection, and remanded Figueroa into police custody until September 4.

Burglar Convicted
Belize City resident Byron Tillett also appeared in court today. Tillett is accused of burglarizing the home of Phillip Wade in Ladyville. According to reports, Wade and his son left their house at around 9:30 one morning and returned just after 2 that afternoon. Wade told police that he went to the restroom as soon as they got home, and while there he heard his his son yell at somebody to get out of the house. By the time Wade came back out of the restroom, his son had already apprehended Tillett.

Belize's Best Speller
Today Belize's most talented young spellers gathered in Burrell Boom for the 2017 Bowen & Bowen National Spelling Bee - which is the 23rd time the event has been held. After beating out 500 other students from throughout the country, the 12 best primary school spellers competed to win prizes and scholarship money. And after almost three hours of intense competition, Bethel SDA Primary School's Lionel Martin, emerged victorious. We spoke to him and the second place, Gerson Makhwani, about the their performance...

Festival Of The Arts Honors Its History
Last week the Festival of the Arts started off with a lot of energy on the BTL Park stage. And all this week we've been airing the morning showcases of the best young talent live on Channel 7. We've seen elaborate performances from students all over the country, but the format and theme of the festival wasn't always like it is now - like everything else there is a history or a story behind it. And today at the 2nd Annual Vernon Leslie Memorial Lecture at the Bliss - panelists discussed the historical context of the Festival of the Arts going way back to when it all started in 1953. One of the panelists Leroy Green gave us more background.

Big Bush Fiya
The rainy season should be here already and, while we wait for it, the dry earth is burning all over Belize. Bush fires have become a regular sighting, and today there was a huge one in the Ladyville area. So huge that it could be seen for mile, and the thick, billowing smoke forced police to divert traffic between the BDF cutoff and Marage Road - unto Perez Road. The fire was controlled without damaging any property.

PM's Wife In B'dos
The Prime Minister's wife, Kim Simplis-Barrow, is finishing up a 2-day event in Barbados with Reema Carmona, the First Lady of Trinidad and Tobago. They were there to participate in the subregional consultation for the adaptation of the United Nations' Global Strategy for Women's Children's and Adolescent's Health 2016-2030. It also builds on the UN initiative Every Woman, Every Child", which a group of Caribbean First ladies, including Carmona and Simplis-Barrow, have been working on for 2 years now.

Keeping Cuban Ties
As we told you last week, Deputy Prime Minister Patrick Faber returned from a high level state visit to Cuba. Cuba is one of Belize's key allies, lending generous assistance in the medical and sports fields. Faber discussed the ways they hope to expand that to culture, tourism and pharmaceuticals:... Faber was accompanied by the Minister of Tourism and the Minister of State for Health.

Channel 5

ASP Rochelle Chan Will Seek Legal Advice Over Naming in Senate Inquiry
Assistant Superintendent of Police Rochelle Chan has spoken out, but reluctantly, in response to statements made by acquaintance Alvarine Burgess in Wednesday’s public hearing of the Senate Special Select Committee. [...]

Chan Says U.S. Visa Expired, Was Not Revoked
Separate and apart from the allegations made against him by Burgess, reports surfaced that Assistant Superintendent Rochelle Chan had his U.S. visa revoked by authorities. The truth is in somewhat [...]...

The Full Extent of the David Nanes Affair
The confidential report of the Immigration Department and former acting Director Maria Marin on the David Nanes Schnitzer affair has been obtained by News Five.  At the end of this [...]...

Orlando Vera Headed to Jail After Guilty Finding of Perverting Justice
In the Magistrate Court today, Ballistic Examiner, Orlando Vera learned his fate and it was not good news. Vera was found guilty of abetment to pervert the course of justice [...]...

Guatemalan Fined Over False Documents
Guatemalan national Lazaro Rafael Zaldivar Lopez has yet to pay a fine of three thousand dollars and remains in prison over the weekend. He changed a plea of not guilty [...]...

Accused Toledo Murderer Pleads Guilty to Manslaughter
Forty-seven-year-old Florencio Pop who was charged with the February, 2012 chopping murder of Felix Cucul Ich in Bladden Village, in Southern Belize, was sentenced in the Dangriga Supreme court earlier this week.   This [...]...

O-S-S-U-A-R-Y Spells Victory for Toledo’s Lionel Martin at Spelling Bee
A twelve-year-old boy from a school in the deep south is the national coca cola spelling bee champ. He bested eleven other primary school students to win the title. This [...]...

Kendis Flowers Charged for Shooting at Police Officers
Well-known street figure Kendis Flowers appeared in court today where he was arraigned for the attempted murder of two police officers. According to police, Flowers fired as many as five [...]...

Cayo Police Vehicle Rammed; Driver Charged
Earlier today, pictures surfaced on social media of a police pickup, extensively damaged to the rear and front portions. A late evening release by the department states that a police [...]...

Motorcyclist Dies after Crashing into Sugar Trailers
A traffic accident on Thursday night claimed the life of thirty-three-year-old Rigoberto Coba of Guinea Grass, Orange Walk District.  It happened on the Corozal Cane Traffic Road near BELCOGEN. Coba, [...]...

Progressive Party Wants Castro Investigated; Saldivar is Wrong Too
The People’s United Party has called for the removal of Minister of State Edmond Castro, following the revocation of his visa by the U.S. State Department. The Belize Progressive Party [...]...

After Drama, B.P.P. Wants “Tangible Results” from Senate Inquiry
We also asked Chairman Smith to comment on the May seventeenth showdown between supporters of the Belizeans Against Courtenay movement, particularly House macebearer Brian “Yellow Man” Audinett, and the press, [...]...

It’s Still No to the I.C.J.
Last week, Minister of Foreign Affairs Wilfred Elrington broke the news that Guatemala expects to have its referendum on taking the Belizean claim to the International Court of Justice later [...]...

Cost of Living Keeps Rising
A release sent out by the Statistical Institute of Belize on Wednesday shows that the prices of goods and services regularly purchased by households were up by two point two [...]...

Denys Barrow’s Peers Honor New C.C.J. Judge
New judge of the Caribbean Court of Justice, Denys Barrow, was sworn in to great fanfare and approval on Thursday morning in Belize City. He is the first Belizean on [...]...

COLA Tells Robert Montero that Louis Wade Has God’s Protection
Pastor Louis Wade of Plus TV is awaiting his fate in the San Ignacio Magistrate’s Court after being charged on May nineteenth with common assault and use of insulting words [...]...

The History of the Festival of the Arts
The national festival of arts concluded earlier this week. Golden performances from across the country converged at the Bliss Center for the Performing Arts to showcase the best of the [...]...

A Festival for All That Jazz
There is another festival this weekend. It’s the Belize International Jazz Festival. For the third year, the festival has been a medium to increase appreciation and love for jazz music. [...]...

CEMO Declares it is Ready for Hurricane Season
We’re two days into the hurricane season, which the Met Office predicts will be above normal with a total of fourteen named storms. On Wednesday, the City Emergency Management Organization [...]...

How’s the Weather? Check the Met’s New Website
At Wednesday’s announcement of the hurricane season, the Met Service also launched their newly redesigned website. The user-friendly website has new features such as the real time display of data [...]...

LOVE FM

PM and Saldivar Differ on Views of BCG Boats
Minister John Saldivar has himself been condemned over the past days for using vessels of the Belize Coast Guard vessels to transport his team the Bandits to San Pedro for a game. Today the Prime Minister weighed in on the matter saying that, in his view, the question is whether what the Minister did was […]

Toledo’s Elysia Pop: 2017 Diana Legacy Awardee
A young Belizean student from the Toledo District became only the second Belizean to receive the prestigious Diana Legacy award. We hear more in this report from correspondent Fem Cruz. FEM CRUZ “17-year-old, Elysia Pop from Bella Vista Village, Toledo was awarded the Diana Legacy Award 2017. She is one of the twenty persons selected […]

Alvarine Burgess Says She Earned $1.5K Per Trip to Immigration
After being postponed for one week, the Special Senate Select Committee resumed its investigations into the auditor general’s reports. There was not any disruption or interruption at today’s hearing and that had to do with the increase of police presence and Senator Aldo Salazar’s stern warning. We will get to that later, but first we […]

PlusTV

Senate Hearing commences after one week postponement
The senate Select Committee commenced its hearing today after it was postponed last week at the request of the Opposition due to security concerns. This was because of the heckling of the PUP Senator, Eamon Courtenay, by a disruptive group of UDP supporters in the gallery led by UDP Party Chairman A...

Brackett and Rivers banned from Senate Hearings
The media has been trying to get Brian “Yellowman” Audinett banned from attending other hearings and a letter was sent to the Clerk of the National Assembly requesting just that. The letter was signed by all major media houses. While that request may be a long shot, today, COLA’s president, Geovan...

Former Ambassador Nisbeth testifies at Senate hearings
There were two witnesses today, the first was Former Ambasador to Taiwan Cherie Nisbeth. She was the person who in essence raised the red flag regarding Former Deputy Mayor Eric Chang’s involvement with Citizen Kim. She had sent an email to the CEO Alexis Rosado in Ministry of Foreign Affairs highli...

Alvarine Burgess testifies at Senate Hearings
In the afternoon session, whistleblower Alvarine Burgess was the witness. Burgess alleges that she and Minister Edmond Castro were business partners in a visa scheme where he recommended applicants for a fee of $2000 per visa. Burgess was not featured in the Auditor General’s report but because the ...


Re: Today's Belize News: June 3, 2017 [Re: Marty] #523885
06/03/17 07:12 AM
06/03/17 07:12 AM
Joined: Oct 1999
Posts: 59,369
oregon, spr
Marty Offline OP

.
Marty  Offline OP

Amandala

Inflation hits new high
Consumer prices continue to push upwards as a result of increases in transport costs, primarily due to airfare prices and the cost of fuel at the pumps, reflecting higher world market prices as well as increased tax levies implemented by the Government to raise additional revenue for the 2017-2018 fiscal year which began in April. For the first time since 2012, the cost of goods and services procured by Belizean households has shot up beyond 2% for two consecutive months, according to data published by the Statistical Institute of Belize (SIB). Cost of living contracted in 2015 but increased by 0.7% in 2016, according to the SIB, and since the year 2017 began, inflation rates have well exceeded that figure.

Hon. Edmond Castro “explains” the cancellation of his US visas
The U.S. State Department’s revocation of Minister of National Emergency Management Organization (NEMO) and Transport, Edmond “Clear the Land” Castro’s diplomatic and personal visas may be an indictment of the corruption currently afflicting the Dean Barrow-led United Democratic Party government. As the Senate hearings into the corruption in the Passport and Nationality department draw near to a conclusion, it is becoming clearer with each hearing that some of Barrow’s Cabinet ministers were involved in a massive visa hustling scheme at the Immigration Department, which the US may have viewed as compromising US national security, and it caught the attention of the US Department of Homeland Security.

Ready Call Center will trim its workforce by 239
Tomorrow, June 2, Ready Call Center Ltd. will be celebrating its 12th anniversary of operations in Belize. For the company, however, it is a bitter-sweet anniversary, because a part of the company operations will cease and that will affect 239 members of its current workforce. In a telephone interview with Amandala late this evening, David Avisa, who works in the finance department of the company, said that the company, which has 7 accounts, will lose one of its accounts, and this will have an impact on the employees at the Burrell Boom junction office. Avisa said the operations at the Burrell Boom office will cease and the company will only be operating from the ICON Building, located on Newtown Barracks in Belize City.

Finally, Ministers named!
Whistleblower Alvarine Burgess took the witness stand in May 2015 in defense of herself in a defamation lawsuit in the Supreme Court filed by Hon. Edmond “Clear the Land” Castro. Yesterday, Wednesday, Burgess appeared before the Senate Select Committee inquiring into the Auditor General’s Report on the Immigration Department covering the period 2011 to 2013. At the Supreme Court hearing, Burgess proved to be a credible witness and her testimony eventually led Minister Castro to retreat from his defamation claim.

Belize’s former Ambassador to (China) Taiwan testifies at the Senate immigration hearing
The Senate Select Committee investigating the Auditor General’s report on irregularities at the Immigration Department between 2011 and 2013 met today in Belmopan at the National Assembly building after its hearing last week was postponed due to the tension created by UDP chairman Alberto August and Macebearer Brian “Yellowman” Audinett, who behaved in a disruptive manner in the last hearing. With additional police presence today, the Senate Select Committee heard testimonies from two persons — Cherie Nisbet, the former Belize Ambassador to (China) Taiwan, and whistleblower Alverine Burgess. Surprisingly, Ambassador Nisbet testified that no one from the Belize office in Taiwan ever attempted to contact a Honduran diplomat, Alejandro Young, through whom Belize City Deputy Mayor Eric Chan said, he had gotten to know Korean criminal Won Hong Kim.

“My vision is bigger than my disappointments.” What’s next for Kaina Martinez?
A source inside the Belize athletics community suggested over the weekend that he suspects that Belizean star sprinter, Kaina Martinez might be “going pro” after she graduates from Texas A&M University, Kingsville in a few weeks’ time. To our email query following congratulations yesterday, Kaina confided that she intends to come home in about three weeks “to deal with some things. Until then, I’ll continue to work hard.” But on the matter of entering the professional arena, she had no such plans.

Pepsi NEBL champion will be crowned Saturday night
The Pepsi NEBL 2017 champion will be crowned on Saturday night, June 3, at the San Pedro High School in San Pedro Town. The game will tip off at 9:00 p.m. between Belmopan Bandits and San Pedro Tiger Sharks. The winner of this decisive game 3 will be the Pepsi NEBL 2017 Champion. Following the game will be the presentation of individual and team awards. The game will be live on TNC.

Belmopan First Division Tournament update
The Belmopan First Division Closing Tournament 2017 continued over the weekend with 5 games at the Isidoro Beaton Stadium. On Friday, May 26, in a Group B opener, Roaring Creek United shut out Wingz FC, 4-0, with goals from Amir Torres (39’), Kenny Williams (70’ & 91’) and Jermaine Joseph (90’). And in the Group A nightcap, Police FC crushed Juventus FC, 4-1, with a goal each from Kishane Pech (19’), Khalid Martinez (47’), TV Ramos (80’) and Kyle Thomas (88’). Juventus’ only goal was by Belhem Guzman (33’).

Race to the playoffs; back-to-back days of Smart 13 & Under at MCC
It is a very tight race, indeed, to the Top-4 playoffs in the 6th Annual Smart 13 & Under, Football Tournament; and two Weeks of games will be packed into the coming weekend, as a full slate of 6 games each will be played on Saturday and Sunday at the MCC. So far, no team has secured a playoff spot; but a few might be a lot closer to doing so after this weekend.

Rural North Football Tournament, weekend semifinals results
The Belize Rural North Football Tournament for the Edmund “Clear the Land” Castro Cup 2017 continued on Sunday, May 28, at the Lucky Strike Football Field with knockout semifinal games in both the U-15 and Senior categories of the competition. In game 1, (U-15) Ladyville Rising Stars and Sandhill Youths ended 1-1 in regulation. Kenroy Allen (22’) gave Ladyville the lead, but Keiron Requena (38’) equalized for Sandhill. They then went straight to penalty kicks, where Ladyville won, 5-4. In game 2, (U-15) Maskall Youths dropped Face of Belize, 3-2, on 2 goals by Joseph Morales (28’ & 36’) and the other by Trent Humes (42’). For Face of Belize, Bjarn Gabourel (38’ & 54’) got both goals.

Editorial: Washington sends a message
The United States Embassy in Belize revoked Hon. Edmond Castro’s diplomatic and tourist visas less than twenty four hours before the United Democratic Party (UDP) Transportation Minister’s great nemesis, Alvarine Burgess, was scheduled to appear before the Senate Committee inquiry into the scandals and corruption at the Immigration Department. When Alvarine did begin to answer questions late Wednesday morning, May 31, it was exactly two weeks after UDP Chairman Alberto August had led roughnecks into the National Assembly building to disrupt the Senate hearing. During the course of that fracas, the UDP-appointed mace bearer in the House of Representatives, who was one of Chairman August’s six or seven “soldiers,” had verbally and physically assaulted three members of the media – from Channel 7, PLUS TV, and KREM Radio/TV.

From the Publisher
In February of 1970 the Cabinet of the ruling People’s United Party (PUP) made a decision to arrest and charge two leaders (myself and Ismail Omar Shabazz) of the United Black Association for Development (UBAD) with sedition (seditious conspiracy, to be precise). That PUP Cabinet decision, I would say, began a series of events which eventually led to a massive UBAD uprising in the streets of Belize City on the night of May 29, 1972 – 45 years ago. On Monday morning of this week, the 45th anniversary of the May 1972 explosion, Lisa “Love” Myvett and Kareem “Frisco” Wallace, two KREM Radio announcers who host the “Morning Stew” show, asked me to speak on air about the events of the night of May 29, 1972. I could only give my personal observations of the night, because the principal actors in the dramatic events which followed the UBAD march were Secretary-General Norman Fairweather and two UBAD members, the late Michael Hyde (my younger brother) and Edwardo Burns (the older brother of River of Fire – the well-known poet).

So Barrow in 1995, so Saldivar in 2017!
In 1995, as the Executive Officer of the BDF Maritime Wing, I received instructions from the Commandant of the BDF to provide a boat to take some people to Caye Caulker and then on to San Pedro. The instructions, according to the Commandant, were directly from the Minister of National Security and therefore I was to ensure that we did not “screw up”. I in turn, instructed Lieutenant Valerio to command the vessel and to report to the Fort George pier in good time and in good order. Shortly before the vessel was due to depart, I got a call from Lieutenant Valerio that some people had arrived to be transported to Caye Caulker but that they were all wearing political tee shirts. He inquired what to do. My training has always been that the BDF serves the people of Belize through the democratically elected government of the day but that public resources must never be used for political purposes. On the basis of this training, I instructed Lieutenant Valerio to inform the persons at the pier that they could not ride the BDF vessel wearing political paraphernalia. They therefore had two options: remove the political tee shirts and replace it with non-political attire or be denied access to the vessel. Some people were able to place another top over the political tee shirts and some of the men reversed their tee shirts so that the political slogans were not so obvious. Satisfied that there were no glaring displays of partisanship, and after I had consulted the Commandant, the vessel departed.

My Experience on the EPI –Belize ecology course
Editor Sir, A few weeks ago, from March 24 to April 1, a group of 17 persons, including six students from Galen University, four students and a professor from Linn-Benton Community College in Oregon and two instructors from Ecology Project International (EPI-Belize), embarked on a field-based ecology course to Calabash Caye and Cockscomb Basin Wildlife Sanctuary. We were going to learn about the ecosystems and importance of these natural resources while also learning to collect scientific data. Upon our arrival at Calabash Caye, where we spent our first five days, we, the students, were given a quick tour of the University of Belize’s ERI research facility where we were accommodated. The first step was learning how to snorkel. The majority of us, including myself, had little to no experience with snorkeling. However, our instructors, Connally Canto and Katherine Brady, graciously taught us step-by-step how to snorkel confidently. After what seemed like three nervous panic attacks for me, I finally mastered the basics of snorkeling and became comfortable to participate in all activities.

Get prepared for above normal hurricane season, Belize Met office chiefs say
Officials at the National Meteorological Service in Ladyville today said that Belizeans need to be prepared during the 2017 hurricane season, which is forecasted to have above average cyclone activity. The season begins tomorrow, June 1. Chief Meteorologist, Catherine Cumberbatch, told the press during a mid-afternoon briefing that this year is forecasted to have at least 14 named storms, higher than the seasonal average for the Atlantic at 12 named storms. The forecast also calls for 7 hurricanes, nearly double the 4 hurricanes which would strike during an average season. Meanwhile, 3 of those hurricanes may be major hurricanes, with strength of category 3 or higher – or winds higher than 110 miles per hour.

Miss Belize Universe controversy takes a new turn
In the wake of controversy over the abruptly terminated reign of Miss Belize Universe, Rebecca “Bexx” Rath, a press release was issued by Orson Elrington, who said that he was speaking on behalf of himself and Reynaldo Malik, who together own a 2/3 majority in Queen of the Jewel Ltd., saying that the statement which had been released the prior Friday by shareholder and pageant director, Opal Enriquez, was unauthorized by them. “While we own 2/3 of the company, for various reasons we have left the running of the company and its affairs to Ms. Enriquez. Moving forward that will no longer be the case,” said the release. The release added that Enriquez had resigned as pageant director on Friday, May 26, but she told us that while she did indicate to Elrington that she was resigning, she was not resigning as pageant director.

Erin Linarez, 23, missing since Tuesday morning, May 23
Erin Linarez, 23, a laborer of San Ignacio, has been missing since Tuesday, May 23. He was last seen at Remar Rehabilitation Center in Bullet Tree Falls, Cayo District. According to the manager at Remar, Linarez left around 4:30 a.m. that Tuesday morning and no one has heard from him or seen him since. His mother told us today that they have formed a search party and are looking for him.

GOB does not intend to pay multi-million-dollar Newco award
Financial Secretary Joseph Waight told Amandala today that the Government of Belize “does not intend to pay” the arbitral award handed down several years ago in favor of Newco, a company which had been granted a long-term concession to run the Philip Goldson International Airport, with the deal later aborted by the Musa administration in favor of Belizean investors who were connected with members of the then administration. Official sources tell us that the tab is now in the region of US$6.5 or US$7 million due to interest accruing on the unpaid award. This January, the US Court of Appeal refused to hear a request from the Government of Belize to quash the US$4.26 million arbitral award in favor of Newco, while it also refused to hear the Government’s challenge to other arbitral awards in favor of companies connected with British billionaire Michael Ashcroft.

The Reporter

Mexican law enforcers stop their citizens who demand reopening of border bridge
Mexican law enforcers had to pull out muscle to keep order at the Subteniente Lopez border bridge this week, after Mexicans threatened another day of disturbance. The Mexican civilians, mostly merchants who sell their products on the Mexican side of the bridge, and some […]

The healing circle book of poems launched
A book of poems entitled, “The healing Circle”, was launched last week Thursday at the Saint Catherine Academy multi-purpose center. The book highlights 64 poems, penned by 17-year-old Azizi Hoy and 70-year-old Myrna Manzanarez. Both women are Belizean icons in their own right and bring […]

Cuban and Mexican embassies to host cultural musical presentations
A joint collaboration between the Mexican and Cuban Embassies to Belize will result in a cultural musical presentation showcase at the Institute of Mexico in Belize City on June 6th. The event is expected to commence at 7:00 p.m., and will gorm part of the […]

Saldivar/Defense Ministry respond to allegations of misuse of public assets
The reports that Minister of Defense, John Saldivar has used Coast Guard boats and fuel to take his privately-owned Bandits team members and their family and friends to San Pedro for scheduled games have garnered responses from Saldivar and his ministry. On Tuesday, the Ministry […]

Honduran diplomat in Belize fired for transcription error
A Honduran diplomat in Belize was fired this week after he made a grave error in translating an official communiqué regarding his country’s position on the current civil unrest in Venezuela. Honduras’ Ministry of Foreign Affairs confirmed on Tuesday that he “dismissed” Carlos Villanueva, chargé […]

Lights, Cameras, Action! Just not in people’s bedrooms please!
People’s interactions and behaviour, particularly on the south side of Belize City, is something the Belize Police Department has started to literally zoom in on, with the acquisition of the first set of high definition surveillance cameras, strategically-placed in areas called “hot zones”.   […]

Opal back pedals on Ms. Belize status
After a firestorm of bad publicity over the apparent dethroning of Ms. Belize 2016-2017, Rebecca Rath, Opal Enriquez, former pageant organizer, has recanted her position on Rath’s status.   Enriquez had issued a release on May 26 stating “Effective Immediately, the official title of Miss Belize […]

Belize City and South Korea signs MOU
Belize City Mayor Darrel Bradley signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) at City Hall last Friday with the Mayor of Yeosu, Ju Cheol Hyeon of South Korea.   The MOU was officially signed on Friday May 26, and seeks to strengthen relationships and foster developments […]

Belize city mayor address UN forum on Sustainable Development
Belize City Mayor Darrel Bradley, returned from New York last week after attending the United Nations Economic and Social Council Forum on Financing Sustainable Development.   The forum was an international conference by the United Nations Economic and Social Council to discuss the implementation of sustainable […]

Mexico extends visitors card stay
Holders of Mexico’s Regional Visitors Card are advised that there has been a recent amendment that extends visitors temporary stay from 3 to 7 days.   The embassy sent out a press release last week stating that the recent amendment became effective on May 19 and […]

Delegation wraps up official visit to Cuba
A delegation consisting of government ministers and experts from Belize led by Deputy Prime Minister Patrick Faber recently concluded an official visit to the Republic of Cuba.   The tour was held from May 22-26. Faber was accompanied by Tourism Minister Manuel Heredia Jr. and […]

Wife stabs husband dead; DPP says self-defense
An argument between a wife and husband turned into a fight and ended in death when the husband was fatally stabbed two days before their first anniversary, but the wife has been released on grounds that she acted in self-defense.   The two got […]

Mother detained for throwing newborn in river
A Guatemalan woman and man from San Vicente village in the Toledo District are detained by police pending investigations into the death and disposal of a new born baby.   The body of the decomposed male baby was recovered from the San Vicente river by police […]

Police investigating partially decapitated body in Bella Vista
A resident of Trio Village in the Toledo district was found brutally murdered on Sunday. His head was partially decapitated, and he had multiple gunshot wounds to his chest along with chop wounds to both of his shoulders.   The body of 21-year-old Armando Alverenga […]

Three policemen in Corozal accused of extortion
Three policemen assigned to the Corozal police station have been accused of extortion, but the complainant says the three accused are still on the job and are now harassing him, even after he paid monies they demanded.   The businessman, Elijio Briceno, gave […]

Customs Broker fined for stealing
Justin Longsworth is a 29 year old customs broker accused of stealing eleven flat screen television sets from his employer, the  customs brokerage house of  Valdez Global Shipping. Last  week a  court convicted Longsworth of stealing  from his employer and ordered to pay a fine amounting to $1,100.              . It […]

Editorial
The Senate Inquiry into  passport irregularities at the  Ministry and Department of Immigration which was interrupted two weeks ago by disturbances from the gallery, resumed this week with spectacular disclosures from an acknowledged  passport player, Mrs. Alverine Burgess. She explained in detail how the scam wasrun. .      She testified that […]

PM to Saldivar: ‘Stop using Coast Guard boats!’
Prime Minister, Dean Barrow has said that the Minister of Defence, John Saldivar must stop using the coast guard vessels, gifted by the US government, for transporting his privately-owned Bandits basketball team, relatives, and fans to San Pedro for games. Barrow said he was impressed […]

Hundreds fear losing job at Ready Call
More than  100 people are faced with sudden unemployment after Ready Call, one of Belize’s oldest call centers, announced it had lost a U.S. client and would be downsizing and consolidating its operations to the ICON building on Newtown Barracks in Belize City. Ready Call’s […]

US strips Castro of diplomatic and tourist visas
The US State Department has revoked the diplomatic and tourist visas they issued to Minister of State with responsibility for National Emergency Management and Transport, Edmond Castro some years ago, but the news seems to have more effect on Prime Minister Barrow than […]

Alvarine Burgess provides explosive testimony
Whistleblower, Alvarine Burgess, this week, accused three Ministers of Government and a ranking officer of the Belize Police Department of high level immigration fraud, during her testimony to the Senate Select Committee.   Burgess took the stand on Wednesday, accusing Ministers Edmond Castro, Erwin Contreras, and […]

Central Bank loses another corresponding bank?
A new report by the International Monetary Fund (IMF) indicates that Belize’s Central Bank has lost another correspondent banking account, suggesting it may have been due to offering nesting services; however, the Central Bank has responded denying the claim, saying it will seek clarification from the IMF. The IMF’s latest report on the issue of correspondent banking relations (CBRs) dated March, 2017 and titled “Recent trends in Correspondent Banking Relationships” details Belize’s troubles with the “de-risking” phenomenon between 2015 and 2016, noting that major global banks terminated around 22 CBR accounts (out of 31) in 9 of Belize’s 11 commercial and off-shore banks. “The Central Bank of Belize had also lost three of its five CBRs in the same period, including one that was used to process selected wires for banks that lost CBRs. As a result, transaction costs and processing times had increased substantially,” the IMF report said.

Breaking Belize NewsPJ

World Croc day June 17
The Belize Zoo and the Crocodile Research Coalition is inviting Belizeans to join them in celebrating World Crocodile Day 2017. It will be celebrated on Saturday, June 17, 2017 at the Belize Zoo from 10:00 a.m. to 3:00 p.m. The day will include games, […]

September Celebrations Theme Competition
The National Celebration Commission today announced the 2017 September Celebrations Theme Competition. The commission is inviting Belizeans living at home or abroad to submit their ideas for the theme of the 2017 September Celebrations in commemoration of the 219th Anniversary of the Battle of […]

NEMO Coordinators discuss state of readiness
National Emergency Management Organization (NEMO) coordinators from around the country came together today in Belmopan for a State of Readiness meeting to mark the start of the new Hurricane Season for 2017. Minister of National Emergency Management, Edmond Castro addressed the coordinators asking that […]

Justice Denys Barrow is new Judge of CCJ
Yesterday, Denys Arthur Barrow was sworn in as Judge of the Caribbean Court of Justice (CCJ) and became the first Belizean to be sworn in to the CCJ bench. The ceremony was held at the Belize Biltmore Plaza in Belize City. Barrow was sworn […]

National Song Competition 2017
Belizeans are being invited by the National Celebrations Commission to highlight Belize’s rich and unique cultural heritage and to commemorate our national celebrations. The National Song Competition was created to provide professional and amateur musicians with the opportunity to create and showcase their original […]

Belmopan police officers commended for quick response
Yesterday, five officers from the Belmopan police formation were commended for their hard work. On Saturday, a vehicle belonging to Pesticide Control board was stolen along with 4000 Euros. The officers’ commitment and determination led them to the discovery of the vehicle, recovery of […]

Belizean canoe team represents in Puerto Rico
A delegation of six Belizean athletes from the Belize Canoe Association (BCA) are representing the country this week at the Puerto Rico Olympic Cup, a regional canoe and kayak competition. Amado Cruz, Bayron Cruz, Jesus Linares and James Alford; and two females, Ruth Cruz, Milenie […]

Motorcycle valued at $2000 stolen in Belize City
Police in the old capital are reporting that sometime between the hours of 11:00 p.m. on the 31st of May , and 7:30 a.m. on the 1st of June, 2017, someone stole a red 2013 Meilun brand motorcycle with license plate number MC-3784 from Anthony Francisco. According to Francisco, the motorcylce is valued at $2000 and […]

Diabetes: a growing problem for Belize
The World Health Organization (WHO) estimates that there are 150 million people worldwide, living with diabetes mellitus. The WHO also says that the amount of people living with diabetes may double by 2025. Belize is not exempt from the world’s diabetes problem: data compiled […]

San Ignacio Police vehicle involved in crash
Reports reaching our newsroom are that one of the vehicles assigned to the San Ignacio Police formation crashed into a lamppost in front of the Police Station around 1 this morning. BBN has obtained pictures of the truck . Police is yet to issue […]

Blogs

Expats Are Still Falling in Love with Belize and Here’s Why
Located just a few hours’ flying time from the United States, the small nation of Belize in Central America is rapidly becoming one of the top destinations for retirees and expats. As the only country in the region where English is the official language, Belize is easy to navigate for expats, and Belize is the only other country besides the United States to still continue using miles, gallons, and other non-metric measurements. Here are other reasons why expats love Belize:

Goff’s Caye: A Stunning Island off The Coast of Belize City
In Belize, all of the offshore islands are referred to as cayes (pronounced “keys”) and Goff’s Caye is definitely one of the more popular thanks to its close location to Belize City, gorgeous sandy beaches, and healthy marine system replete with a coral reef and a foraging area for sea turtles. Belize City is separated from several nearby islands by a waterway called the English Channel. Goff’s Caye is located on the north side of the English Channel and measures just 1.2 acres. The only way to get to Goff’s Caye is by boat. There are no regular water taxi services to and from the island but many domestic charter and tour companies offer transportation to and from Goff’s Caye. It takes approximately 20-30 minutes between Belize City and Goff’s Caye.

International Sourcesizz

We Will Be Keeping An Eye On The Gulf Of Mexico This Weekend Into Next Week For Possible Tropical Development & Then The Area Around The Yucatan Peninsula Starting Around June 10th For Another Chance For Tropical Development
Current weather analysis showed a surge of moisture streaming northeastward into the Gulf of Mexico and across the Florida Panhandle. This moisture stream is from a eastern Pacific tropical depression that is making landfall in southern Mexico. The eastern Pacific tropical depression is expected to move across southern Mexico and will continue to produce heavy rainfall and flash flooding across southeastern Mexico today into this weekend. In fact, at least 2 landslides have been reported in Mexico’s Oaxaca state from the eastern Pacific tropical system. The remnants of the eastern Pacific tropical system is expected to emerge in the Bay of Campeche sometime on Saturday and then move slowly north-northeastward across the Gulf of Mexico during this weekend and into early next week. Current analysis indicates that wind shear values across the Gulf of Mexico are very high with 30 to 50 knots of shear being reported.

First Ladies of Belize and Trinidad and Tobago support the Global Strategy for the Health of Women, Children and Adolescents
The wife of Belize's Prime Minister Kim Simplis Barrow and the First Lady of Trinidad and Tobago, Reema Carmona, expressed support for the regionalization of the United Nations’ Secretary General Global Strategy for Women's, Children’s and Adolescent’s Health 2016-2030. The Global Strategy seeks to end the preventable deaths and achieve health and well-being of women, children and adolescents; and expand enabling environments for this population to thrive. "This meeting is timely and necessary," said Carmona during her participation in the consultation organized by the Regional Coordinating Mechanism for the adaptation of the Global Strategy for Women's, Children's and Adolescents' Health to the Latin American and Caribbean context. The Mechanism is composed of the Inter-American Development Bank (IADB), World Bank, United Nations Children's Fund (UNICEF), United Nations Population Fund (UNFPA), Pan American Health Organization/ World Health Organization (PAHO / WHO) and United Nations Secretariat for HIV/AIDS (UNAIDS).

Much Ado About Nothing: Belize PM Defends Embattled Transport Minister
Mounting calls for Prime Minister Dean Barrow to sack his Transport Minister Edmond Castro, whose US diplomatic and tourism visas were recently cancelled, have fallen on deaf ears. Barrow is standing by his minister, saying there’s no evidence of any wrongdoing by Castro. “There is no indication of any reason for the revocation of the visa,” he told reporters. The Prime Minister explained that the minister declined an invitation from the US Embassy to come in when he was invited to do so to discuss the renewal of the visas.

Belize: New WBG Country Partnership Framework

Fort Lauderdale Airport's New $200M Concourse in Southwest Terminal to Open June 30
A new $200 million launch pad for more international flights at Fort Lauderdale-Hollywood International Airport is set to open later this month inside Terminal 1, the Broward County home of Southwest Airlines. The new Concourse A passenger facility -- part of an estimated $333 million modernization and expansion project under way at Terminal 1-- is expected to begin welcoming travelers on June 30, airport officials said Thursday during a preview tour. Concourse A will sport five new gates, more restaurants and shops and a Customs and Border Protection inspection station. It will link Southwest's existing Concourses B and C through a connector building that will also offer more food and beverage and retail outlets in coming months.

Petro Caribe Has Benefitted the Caribbean
Monies from the Petro Caribe Initiative continue to assist in the development of St. Vincent and the Grenadines. A number of presidents of Venezuela floated a number of programs aimed at assisting the Caribbean, but there was very little follow-up. However, it was the late President Hugo Chavez who unveiled what is now known as the Petro Caribe Initiative, which allowed Caribbean states to purchased petroleum products at concessionary terms. Under the Agreement signed on June 29, 2005, at Puerto la Cruz in Venezuela, petroleum products from Venezuela were and are sold to many Caribbean countries, at prevailing international market prices. It was during the administration of the late President Hugo Chavez in October 2000 that the concept of an energy agreement between Venezuela and Caribbean and Central American countries the Caracas Energy Agreement was signed. This afforded Belize, Costa Rica, the Dominican Republic, El Salvador, Guatemala, Honduras, Haiti, Jamaica, Nicaragua, and Panama to purchase Venezuelan oil products at low-interest.

The Caribbean advance in the adaptation of the Global Strategy for the Health of Women, Children and Adolescents
For two days, representatives of public health systems, the Caribbean Community (CARICOM) and civil society from 18 Caribbean countries and territories met together with the international agencies that integrate the Regional Coordination Mechanism for the Global Strategy for Women’s, Children’s and Adolescent’s Health, in order to adapt the Strategy to the context of the Caribbean. “We need to identify interventions, that are practical, affordable and impactful, while ensuring that we bear in mind the cultural, ethnic and economic diversities that make the Caribbean such a colorful, varied and interesting region of this world”, said Godfrey Xuereb, the Pan American Health Organization/World Health Organization (PAHO/WHO) representative for Barbados and Eastern Caribbean.

WCU professor hoping to unlock Mayan mysteries by scanning bones
Five centuries later, a group of Mayan bones from Central America are in South Mississippi, where medical professionals are using state-of-the-art technology to study them. Dr. Jennifer Hotzman, an assistant professor of anatomy at William Carey University, is studying the bones that were excavated from Tipu, which is located in modern-day Belize, in the late 1970s. "This site was post-contact, so the Spanish had just come to this Mayan population," said Hotzman, "So what I'm interested in looking at are the juvenile remains. And I want to see what kind of impact that the Spanish had on the health and development of the children." She says she's accomplishing that by analyzing the long bones that are present to see if there were any kind of developmental delays or if they developed as we would expect them to as a healthy population. "We basically want to learn exactly how the Mayan individuals, the native population, were affected or influenced by Spanish contact," said Hotzman.

Caribbean Parliamentarians Urged to Scale Up Action Against HIV and AIDS
Minister of Justice, Hon. Delroy Chuck, is calling on the region’s parliamentarians to scale up action in the fight against HIV and AIDS in the Caribbean. He said that priority must be given to tackling stigma and discrimination against people living with AIDS, and removing legal and social barriers that drive the epidemic underground and limit access to prevention and treatment. He said parliamentarians must also support and advance actions for social protection of people living with HIV, and become advocates and ambassadors for HIV and AIDS in their communities, constituencies and in the Parliament.

Martinez earns top LSC honor
The Lone Star Conference office announced Friday that Texas A&M’Kingsville's Kaina Martinez was voted the 2017 LSC Female Track Athlete of the Year by the league's head coaches. Martinez earned the award for the second consecutive season and is the first Javelina female to achieve the accomplishment. Martinez, a native of Belize, placed second in the 100-meter dash at the 2017 NCAA Track and Field Championships with a time of 11.58 seconds, seventh in the 200 (24.10) seconds and was part of the women's 400-meter relay team who ran an impressive 44.98-second time to place third. Martinez along with LaGae Brigance, Keandria Taylor and Plaserae Johnson went gold in the 400-meter relay in the conference championships (45.32 seconds).

Invasive lionfish had no measurable effect on prey fish community structure across the Belizean Barrier Reef
Invasive lionfish are assumed to significantly affect Caribbean reef fish communities. However, evidence of lionfish effects on native reef fishes is based on uncontrolled observational studies or small-scale, unrepresentative experiments, with findings ranging from no effect to large effects on prey density and richness. Moreover, whether lionfish affect populations and communities of native reef fishes at larger, management-relevant scales is unknown. The purpose of this study was to assess the effects of lionfish on coral reef prey fish communities in a natural complex reef system. We quantified lionfish and the density, richness, and composition of native prey fishes (0–10 cm total length) at sixteen reefs along ∼250 km of the Belize Barrier Reef from 2009 to 2013. Lionfish invaded our study sites during this four-year longitudinal study, thus our sampling included fish community structure before and after our sites were invaded, i.e., we employed a modified BACI design. We found no evidence that lionfish measurably affected the density, richness, or composition of prey fishes.

Videos

  • Belize Honeymoon, 5.5min.

  • Girl Guides Association of Belize Pageant & Fundraiser, 13min.

  • Mens Health Feature - Belize Diagnostic Center, 32min.

  • Building People Movement, 33min.

  • Scuba School And Family Dive Center Belize, 2.5min. As a professional dive training facility, we offer all our divers an ongoing educational experience even when doing recreational dives. We have instituted numerous steps to make you the very best diver right from the start.​

  • Belize, 9min.

  • 2017 05 05 Mosquito Canyon with Belize Pro Dive Center, 13min. Three nurse sharks seeking lionfish in reef are very poor hunters even though I keep telling them where the lionfish is. Someone please identify multicolored fish at 00:30 and organism at 08:52. Loggerhead Turtle at 10:02. Lionfish, Bluehead Wrasse, Rock Beauty, Fireworm, Lobster, Honeycomb Cowfish, Hogfish, Bluehead Wrase, Trumpetfish, Sea Urchin, Nudibranch? Yellowtail Damselfish

  • Study Abroad in Belize, 16min. Spent 2 weeks in San Ignacio studying large animal veterinary practices through CELA Belize. The trip an unforgettable experience! So grateful for all the people I met and the lifelong friends I made. Belize will always have a special place in my heart.

  • Rio On Pool & Waterfall (Belize), 7min.

  • In The Jungle At Caracol (Belize), 5min.

  • Caracol Mayan Ruins (Belize), 20min.

  • Animal Sanctuary (Belize), 20min.

  • Belize, 5min. Beyond the Horizon 2017 944th CES

  • Belize Now - June 2, 2017, 30min. Senior Counsel Denys Barrow officially joins the Caribbean Court of Justice, New Vehicles Gifted under Chiquibul Forest Investment Initiative, and Placencia’s first cruise passengers enjoy the peninsula's hospitality. These stories and more on this week’s edition of Belize Now. Thanks for joining us on this Friday, June 2nd, 2017!


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