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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, and other specials
The San Pedro Sun
BTB wins Prestigious Award for Innovation & Creativity
The Belize Tourism Board (BTB) has won the prestigious Innovation & Creativity Award of the Latin American Travel Association (LATA) based in London, the United Kingdom for its Belize Virtual Expo, the first of its kind in Belize. The award was presented today to the Brighter Group, the BTB’s Public Relation’s firm in the UK, at the Experience Latin America (ELA) trade show, which is taking place in London from June 12-14 and organized by LATA. The Brighter Group is representing BTB at the show and received the award on BTB’s behalf. The award was granted to BTB for its Belize Virtual Expo, which will be held at the Biltmore Plaza Hotel on 29th – 30th June. The Virtual Expo aims to give local tourism service providers an opportunity to meet “virtually” with key representatives of the international travel trade.
Lisandra Novelo is new Miss San Pedro 2016-2017, as Marisha Thompson steps down
The San Pedro Town Council and the Miss San Pedro Committee would like to inform the general public on the resignation of Miss Marisha Jemel Thompson as Miss San Pedro 2016-2017, as of June 12, 2017. Miss Thompson is now residing in the district of Cayo, which is a violation of the Miss San Pedro Regulations, as the reigning Miss San Pedro MUST be residing full time in San Pedro Town. This regulation is exempted ONLY if the reigning Miss San Pedro is away pursuing educational activities. In the light of Miss Thompson’s resignation, it is the nature of the first runner up to step up and continue with the responsibilities as the island’s goodwill ambassador, Miss San Pedro 2016-2017. Miss Lisandra Novelo, Miss Ramon’s Village Resort, won the first runner up title during the
Miss San Pedro 2016 pageant on August 27th of 2016.
SPACE graduates 16 proud students
San Pedro Adult Continuing Education (SPACE) held its fifth Commencement Exercises on Sunday, June 11th at the Angel Nuñez Auditorium. The graduating class of 2017 saw 16 students, march to the tune of Pomp and Circumstance, proud of their achievement after a four-year educational journey. Delivering an inspirational speech was guest speaker the Dean of San Pedro Junior College, Gustavo Ellis. He spoke about the graduation theme, encouraging students to make the best out of those single steps. “Whatever they may be, always trust in yourself. Things may change in life, they may not go the way you want- however, never get discouraged. Be wise when you take important steps in your life. Learn from what you have done wrong so you don’t repeat them later on in life.” Ellis congratulated the graduating class and invited them to further their education at the San Pedro Junior College.
Maya Findings In Downtown San Pedro As Archaeological Students Conduct Digs
Did you know that there are nine registered Maya sites on Ambergris Caye? Most of them lie in the heart of San Pedro Town where development has hidden the past from plain sight. One of the largest registered sites is in the heart of downtown San Pedro which encompasses all of Central Park and three blocks back to the lagoon side.
Since May 25, 2017, archeology students from North Carolina Universities have been on Ambergris Caye conducting research on the Post Classic Period Settlement of the Mayas, which is from about 1000AD to when the Spanish made contact with Belizean land.
Over the past years they have been working hand in hand with the Belize Institute of Archeology (BIA) and therefore choose Belize to conduct a four-week archeology field study to train students in field methods, lab methods and about the Mayas who once thrived on Ambergris Caye.
Lisandra Novelo Named New Miss San Pedro As Marisha Thompson Steps Down
The San Pedro Town Council and the Miss San Pedro Committee would like to inform the general public on the resignation of Miss Marisha Jemel Thompson as Miss San Pedro 2016-2017, as of June 12, 2017.
Miss Thompson communicated with the MSP Committee her intentions of her resignation in which she expressed that she would not be able to fulfill her duties as the island’s goodwill ambassador, mainly due to her relocation, as well as other personal matters.
Miss Thompson is now residing in the district of Cayo, which is a violation of the Miss San Pedro Regulations, as the reigning Miss San Pedro MUST be residing full time in San Pedro Town. This regulation is exempted ONLY if the reigning Miss San Pedro is away pursuing educational activities.
Misc Belizean Sources
Wildtracks Update: Release Day!!
All at Wildtracks wake up to the knowledge that, for eight globally endangered howler monkeys, today is the day they return to the wild! The majority came in from the illegal pet trade, one coming in with concussion in after being hit by a car, and one was found with an injured arm on a farm...all of them have come a long way these last two years.
Mitch celebrated their last few days in pre-release with the following set of photographs...
We wish they, and the post-release monitoring trackers, well in their first few days of living in the wild!!!
Haven House 5K Walk/Run
Such a great turnout for our Haven House 5K Walk/Run! Thank you all for coming out to support this worthy cause. We can ALL #standuptodomesticviolence
Paintings by Mr. Robert Reyes to be added to the National Art Collection
The National Institute of Culture and History (NICH) through the Museum of Belize will host the Induction Ceremony for Mr. Robert Reyes’s art donation.
On Thursday, June 15, at 1:00 PM The Bliss Institute will host the induction ceremony for the art of Mr. Robert Sydney Reyes. Mr. Reyes, a friend and past student of the Governor General has donated 4 paintings to the National Art Collection. The Museum of Belize will be hosting this grand event at the Bliss Institute of Arts.
Daddy Daughter Dance
Queen of the Bay presents Daddy Daughter Dance at the George Price Center on June 17th.
Between these lines ...
by Glenn Tillett. Pablo Saul Marin, Belize’s current minister of health, has an opportunity now to re-structure the provision of dialysis services in Belize with a view to making it equitable, accessible and affordable. I’ve been told he does have a plan.
I haven’t seen or read or been apprised of what that plan is, and therefore cannot form any opinion as to its consequentialities but as one of the almost 100 Belizean citizens who must have dialysis or face certain death, I am all ears.
Currently, as I have been told by several persons who claim authority, there are 32 persons receiving dialysis services from the WORTH implemented program at KHMH in Belize City and La Loma Luz in San Ignacio. Reportedly they pay $25.00 per session. The rest of us pay upwards of $220 per session at the private providers. For nearly all of us this is unaffordable.
Attention: Cayo residents
Happening this week: Free medical services (pediatric and adult) in the Georgeville area....
We’re working with farmers to revolutionize farming in southern Belize with the introduction of Inga edulis trees into a system called alley cropping. Corn, beans, pineapples, and peppers are commonly planted in between the rows of Inga. These amazing trees produce loads of weed-suppressing mulch in addition to having nitrogen fixing roots which improve soil fertility. Farmers are investing in their soils; they want to have healthier food and to use the same piece of land year after year!
Belize Sugar Cane Farmers Association (BSCFA) and Belize Sugar Industries (BSI) on Agreement Regarding Loss of Molasses
The Belize Sugar Cane Farmers Association (BSCFA) and the Belize Sugar Industries (BSI) have finalized an agreement, eleven months after the industry suffered a loss of molasses. the following is the press release issued this morning.
Agreed Press Release From the Belize Sugar Cane Farmers Association (BSCFA) and Belize Sugar Industries (BSI) on Agreement Regarding Loss of Molasses Due to Maillard Reaction
The Belize Sugar Cane Farmers Association (BSCF) and Belize Sugar Industries Ltd (BSI) are pleased to announce that an amicable agreement has been arrived at concerning the loss of molasses due to Maillard Reaction, a chemical reaction occurrence which was the first such reaction recorded in Belize.
Insights guide about Belize
Insight Guides, the world's largest visual travel guide series, in association with Discovery Channel, the world's premier source of nonfiction entertainment, provides more insight than ever. From the most popular resort cities to the most exotic villages, Insight Guides capture the unique character of each culture with an insider's perspective. Inside every Insight Guide you'll find: .Evocative, full-colour photography on every page .Cross-referenced, full-colour maps throughout .A brief introduction including a historical timeline .Lively, essays by local writers on the culture, history, and people .Expert evaluations on the sights really worth seeing .Special features spotlighting particular topics of interest .A comprehensive Travel Tips section with listings of the best restaurants, hotels, and attractions, as well as practical information on getting around and advice for travel with children.
Texas Water Safari Canoe race: Belize win's the race at the Texas Water safari
The Texas Water Safari is a boat race down waterways from San Marcos, Texas, to Seadrift, Texas. The total distance traveled is 262 miles. Racers must take all equipment needed with them, receiving only medical supplies, water and ice along the way. The primary requirement is a boat powered only by human muscle. The event was first held in 1963, and is run annually. The race begins on the second Saturday of June of each year, barring bad weather.
In 1962 Frank Brown and Bill "Big Willie" George navigated from San Marcos to Corpus Christi without a motor. In 1963 they created the Texas Water Safari which would become an annual race.
Conference for Mayors
Mayor Darrell Bradley and Councilor Kevin Singh are presently representing the Belize City Council at a Conference for Mayors and Local Authorities on the Implementation and Objectives of Sustainable Development - The Role of Cities and Regions being help in Miami, Florida. With Kevin Baaba Singh.
Beyond the Horizon
Today, the U.S. Embassy and the Government of #Belize, in coordination with U.S. Army South, held the third ribbon cutting ceremony as part of the Beyond the Horizon: 2017-Belize (BTH) collaborative humanitarian exercise. The ceremony, during which the BTH Task Force Commander officially handed over the keys to the emergency room expansion and a new structure with a medical waste incinerator to the Ministry of Health Belize, took place at the Western Regional Hospital (WRH).
BTH is a collaborative training exercise between U.S. Army South, the Belize Defence Force (BDF), the Ministries of Defence, Health, and Education, as well as partner nations, such as Trinidad and Tobago and Colombia. BTH also includes numerous NGOs and private companies from the United States and Belize. The emergency room expansion project could not have happened without close cooperation and partnership with the WRH and the Belmopan City Council.
The origins of the word “Backra”
In the old days, a white man would be called a “Backra” by his friends. This term originated when the early white men in the colony because of the heat would take off their shirts. As a result, their backs became raw from the sun and thus the term “back-raw” and the creolization of these words was pronounced as “Backra.”
Caves: at 2017 BAS
We all know caves were sacred domains, a place where the gods of the underworld lived, where Chaac dwelled, where one could enter Xibalba. Caves are natural formations. But do you know the ancient Maya used to modify caves with their own construction? Come hear Erin Ray talk all about it at the 2017 BAS, as she discusses such construction efforts at Las Cuevas!
To Catch a Lobster!
Do you every wonder how that succulent juicy lobster tail arrived on your plate? Catching lobster is a little bit more complicated that catching a fish and involves a few more steps. We asked some local lobster fishermen to give us the low down on how to catch a lobster.
So, the million dollar question.. how do you catch a lobster?
There are two ways to catch a lobster: using a trap or using a hook. The trap method is used in shallower water in areas such as Ambergris Caye and Caye Caulker. The second method is normally used further afield. Lighters (a 30ft sailing sloop) sets sail for 10 to 15 days at a time with 6 to 7 fishermen and a boat load of ice. These fishermen skin dive the outer reef and atolls and catch lobster with a hook stick or gaff.
Police Detain Suspect For Barahona Murder
Belmopan police have detained a suspect in Saturday night's Cotton Tree execution. He was taken into custody this afternoon and an ID parade will be conducted. Police aren't releasing any more information about the suspect at this time but they believe they have made a significant break in this case.
As we have reported, 21 year old Omar Barahona was shot and killed at a going away party his family had planned for him in Cotton Tree. He had gotten a new job in the US. At around 11:00 on Saturday night, Barahona had stepped outside to meet his friend Devon Brooks when a gunman walked up to them and opened fire. Barahona was shot about 7 times - information is that he had his back turned and the first shot struck him in the head.
No Bail For Vera
On last week Friday's news, we told you about Orlando Vera, a senior firearms examiner convicted of abetment to pervert the course of justice, and sentenced to two years in jail, yet still trying to get out of that conviction on a Supreme Court bail.
Well, this afternoon, Justice Herbert Lord handed down his ruling that he will not be granting Vera bail at this time. That means that Vera will have to wait for his appeal to run its course while he is behind bars. But, his wait won't be an extended one because the court intends to expedite his appeal.
Justice Lord noted this in his decision to deny bail that the DPP, Chery-Lynn Vidal, indicated to the court that the appeal case can be disposed of in a short amount of time.
Chunox, Resentment Still Smoldering
Last week Friday, police were sent to the home of Richard Allen Garcia in Chunox Village in Corozal. Garcia had been asked to move out of the residence by the owner earlier this year, but refused. The owner then made a complaint against Garcia and the police went to confront him, but he evaded them. That was back in March; when the cops went to confront him on Friday June 9th, Garcia allegedly came out swinging a machete. According to police, one of the officers tripped, and Garcia quickly attempted to chop him in the head, at which point another officer fired off a few warning shots. When Garcia continued, the officer then fired again, killing him on the spot.
By the time more cops showed up to process the scene, dozens of angry villagers gathered around eventually forcing the police to flee after the villagers assaulted them with projectiles. The police left Garcia's body behind, along with key evidence, but came back the next day with as many 12 units.
Chuc and Vicente Square Off, Whose Side You On?
Last night, we showed you the press conference that Sergio Chuc held to protest that he is not being allowed to run in the upcoming elections for president of the Football Federation of Belize. The former FFB vice president wanted to opportunity tell the nation that he wasn't bribing anyone - as has been alleged.
That's the allegation that his political opponent, Ruperto Vicente, made against him, and, there is a history of between these two football execs. They entered the administration of the sport's governing body, determined to work together to clean up the football federation, after Dr. Bertie Chimilio was voted out in 2012.
An Upgrade For Western Regional
In early April, ground was broken for the Western Regional Hospital's new emergency room. Construction work had commenced in March and 3 months later, it was finished yesterday. A ceremony was held at the hospital today to inaugurate the emergency room and other new and improved features and equipment. Courtney Weatherburne was in Belmopan today and found out just how significant these infrastructural upgrades are.
About 800 to 900 trauma patients are rushed through these doors on a monthly basis - that number includes Belmopan residents and countrywide referrals - it's an intake that this emergency room simply can't accommodate anymore.
Dr. Rene Godoy, Chief of Staff, Western Regional:
"It is a known fact that our emergency has far outgrown the population that visits it and on a daily basis we see a congestion that overflows."
"If we are not on our toes, and if we are not up to the challenge it becomes chaotic."
BSCFA Gets Money For Lost Molasses
Last year in July, news broke that almost four thousand tonnes of molasses spoilt in storage tanks at the BSI sugar factory. The projected economic loss was almost half a million dollars - and ASR/BSI said that the farmers would have to share in the loss. The cane famers rejected and fought that, saying ASR/BSI was to blame for whatever went wrong in storage and they alone should bear the loss. In the intervening months, some of the molasses were recovered, which lessened the loss in both the volume of molasses and the loss in earnings.
And, now, 11 months later, the Belize Sugar Cane Farmers Association and BSI issued a joint statement today, saying that they've reached an amicable agreement.
Minister Campos Denies Free Zone Meddling
In late April and early May, there was an uproar at the Corozal Free Zone resulting in the suspension of CEO Valentin Blanco. The Free Zone Chamber of Commerce was adamant that Balnco's in-law and UDP Corozal southwest Representative, Dr. Angel Campos was meddling in the Zone's business. Campos has never publicly responded to that charge, but he did today when we asked him. Not surprisingly, he said there is no political interference on his part.
Dr. Angel Campos - Minister of State, Min. of Health:
"The Free Zone, I think everybody can have access. I usually go to the free zone whenever I need to see my friends. I have various friends there, friends that I go and sit down and have tea with, they are Indians and they are there and I have tea with them.
Lisa Shoman To Serve On IDB’s Administrative Tribunal.
Another senior Belizean jurist has been chosen to serve as a judge on an international tribunal. Lisa Shoman has been selected to serve as one of the 7 judges on the Inter-American Development Bank's Administrative Tribunal.
It's a panel set up to settle disputes which arise out of the employment relationship with the Bank, or the corporation with their staff members. The seven judges are chosen from candidates who are from member countries, but no 2 judges can come from the same country.
They are selected and recognized for professional competence and integrity, and they must have the necessary qualifications to sit as judges in the highest judicial courts in their own respective countries.
Panama Says Sayonara Taipei, Hello Beijing
Almost weekly in the news, you'll see coverage of some program sponsored by the Taiwanese. Last week it was the multimillion dollars Motor Vehicle Registration and License System, and on Friday it will be a cultural exchange program for primary and secondary schools.
And while Taiwan continues to play an active role in Belizean public affairs, as it does in other central American countries, not so for Panama, well not anymore at least. News broke today that Panama has severed diplomatic relations with Taiwan and switched over to China. It is a major loss to Taiwan, which is now only recognized by 19 countries, including Guatemala, Honduras and Nicaragua. In the 90's they were recognized by over 20 nations. This year, Panama is the second country to switch allegiances over to mainland China; the first was the African island nation of Sao Tome and PrÃncipe.
Jimenez Caught Conch Fishing In Caye Caulker Reserve
The managers of the Caye Caulker Reserve often tell us that the reserve is under siege from lawless fishermen who are known to have law enforcement look the other way.
Well, they didn't look the other way when 31 year old Elvin Isaac Jimenez, a fisherman from Sarteneja Village, Corozal was caught poaching conch.
That happened on April 1, 2017, at about 6:45 a.m., when fisheries found Jimenez inside a canoe with diving gear, and a crocus sack with 28 undersized conch.
So, he was charged with possession of undersized conch, and fishing in a conservation zone.
Brazen Bank Breaking Burglary In Bella Vista
One weekend story which didn't make it into last night's very packed newscast was a major burglary in Bella Vista Village, Toledo. It happened at the Toledo Teachers Credit Union in Bella Vista - sometime between last Thursday night and Friday morning. When employees got to work, they found a wooden door with its metal shutter and steel burglar bars damaged. Inside, the metal safe had been opened. The thieves got off with $7,088.00 US dollars, $116,575.40 Belize dollars, along with a Glock pistol a pump action 12 gauge shotgun.
Police have not made any arrests.
The Weather And The Farmer
When there are heavy rains and flooding the first thing people think about is protecting their belongings from water damage. And when there is intense heat during the dry season, all anyone wants to do is to keep cool and hydrated. But beyond your personal comfort zone, these extreme weather conditions impact the operations and output in several sectors especially agriculture. So there is certainly a lot more to consider when it comes to the weather. That was the center of discussion at a Climate Change Forum held today at the George Price Center in Belmopan. Courtney Weatherburne has more details.
Issac Dueck, Spanish Lookout Farmer:
"I had a whole crop of Red Kidney Beans completely destroyed because of not enough rain just simply drought, it just didn't rain and some other crops, very poor crops because not enough rain and also too much rain so I had both experiences and that is devastating."
Remembering Women Fishers
Fisherman; it's one of the most common occupations in the country, but it's a term that often disregards the contributions of valuable members of the fishing industry: the women. Today the Belize Conservation and Climate Adaption Project in the Fisheries Department hosted the very first Women in Fisheries Forum. The event aims to identify the problems that women face in the fishing industry, and how to effectively address them. We spoke to several women in the industry about their struggles, and what they're hoping comes out of the forum...
For decades, getting a kidney stone removed in Belize meant getting cut. But, new technology has been developed to allow doctors to send a camera equipped with a laser through a patient's body to break the kidney stones down, but until recently the nearest hospitals that could perform that procedure are in Merida or Guatemala City. Now, the Belize Gastroenterology and Endoscopy Center in Belize City has acquired this cutting edge technology with the help of Dr. Victor Lizarraga, an Assistant Professor at Baylor College of Medicine. We spoke to Dr. Lizarraga about the new procedure, and how helpful it will be...
Queen Square Family Calls Out UDP for Land
There's a land dispute in the Queen's Square area - and the residents say they're being muscled off their land by the UDP political officer. The area is a triple lot near the Triangle Park on Neal's Pen Road where low income housing is going up very fast. But the Usher family - which has owned the property for generations say they were never consulted or compensated. Now, the land had been bushy and abandoned for many years - with the property tax not paid, but the family says they still own it. A family spokesperson gave the media an interview today:..
Irene Usher - Former Resident:
"It was surprising to me, she said that mom they are taking away my land so I asked her how can they take away your land, this land is your family land. This land belongs to you guys. Fight for your land, don't give up just like that and I think for its unjust for what is going on and I don't like it."
D.P.P. Not Consulted as Police Defend Actions in Chunox
The Corozal Police Department remains under pressure tonight. Four officers were assigned by Corozal Police in an operation to evict forty-four year old Richard Garcia last Friday in Chunox Village. [...]
One Questioned, One Detained as Police Close in on TTCU Robbers
One suspect is being questioned following the brazen robbery of the Toledo Teachers Credit Union late last week. The robbers concocted an elaborate plan to break into the building, pry [...]
One Detained in Belmopan for Omar Barahona Murder
Omar Barahona Junior was shot seven times and killed as he attended a going away party in his honor on Saturday night. The twenty-one-year-old from Cotton Tree was socializing with [...]
Ex-Prez of F.F.B. Calls for ‘Fair Play’ Ahead of Election
There is more tonight to the ongoing battles within the Football Federation of Belize. On Monday, you heard Sergio Chuc who has been disqualified from seeking elections as president, call [...]
Chairpersons Withdrawal from Election Process is Wrong
With Chuc out of the way, Ruperto Vicente and Marlon Kuylen will go head-to-head in a few weeks at the annual congress. In the 2016 elections, after twenty-two rounds of [...]
Sergio Chuc, Ruperto Vicente Condemn Arson of GenSec’s Vehicle
In the immediate aftermath of Sergio Chuc’s disqualification to contest the presidency, the vehicle of Michael Blease, the secretary general of the federation, was set on fire. Both Chuc and [...]
I.D.B. Taps Lisa Shoman for Administrative Tribunal…
A Belizean attorney is moving up to a senior post at the Inter-American Development Bank. Senior Counsel Lisa Shoman has been appointed to a six-year term as a sitting judge [...]
…But Attorney and Political Figure Will Not Give Up Law Practice
So, with a cushy number waiting for Shoman at Thirteen Hundred New York Avenue, will her law office here in Belize City be shuttered? That’s what we asked her earlier [...]
“Yellow Man” Reprimanded, But Keeps His Job
A majority of members of the National Assembly Staff Committee voted on Friday during a meeting to reprimand, rather than suspend or remove, House of Representatives Sergeant-At-Arms Brian “Yellow Man” [...]
Macebearer Not Barred from Senate Committee
There will be another public hearing of the Senate Special Select Committee tomorrow, Wednesday, and members of the Belizeans against Courtenay movement led by Alberto August are expected to be [...]
Judge Rules No Bail for Orlando Vera; Hearing Date Set
Last week Friday, Supreme Court Judge, Hon, Justice Herbert Lord heard a bail application for convicted prisoner, Orlando Vera, the Belize Police Department Ballistic Examiner. On June first, 2017 Vera [...]
Duo to be Tried for False Nationality Certificates
Two men, one from San Pedro and the other from Corozal, will have to stand trial at the Supreme Court for thirteen counts of possession of false documents in respect [...]
New Extension to Western Regional Accident and Emergency Area
The Western Regional Hospital got a major upgrade today. The works done on an Accident and Emergency unit will enhance the capability of the hospital to accommodate more patients. Added [...]
Junior Health Minister Denies Involvement in Commercial Free Zone
Valentino Blanco is the embattled C.E.O. at the Free Zone. Over the past few weeks his appointment raised eyebrows with many questioning his qualifications and wondering if there was any [...]
B.S.I., Cane Farmers Settle Molasses Pay-Out
Almost a year ago, Belize Sugar Industries Limited lost over two thousand, six hundred tons of molasses due to a first-of-its-kind Maillard Reaction inside its tanks at Tower Hill. The [...]
Honoring Women in the Fishing Industry
A Women in Fisheries Forum was held today at the Biltmore Plaza. When looking at the fishing activity in Belize, particularly extraction, men dominate the sector. But the industry includes [...]
Panama Ditches Taiwan for People’s Republic of China
Before we go to break, in foreign policy news…Panama has officially severed all diplomatic ties with the Republic of Taiwan, as of Monday and established relations with the People’s Republic [...]
The Met Consults on Climate and Change
Variations in climate influence most human activities either directly or indirectly resulting in losses or benefits. Making effective use of available climate information ensures efficiency and sustainability across a number [...]
Family Raises Alarm after Multiple Houses Built on Pen Road Property
We report on land disputes regularly in this newscast, but this one has a different twist. The de facto caretaker of Queen Square division and sister to Prime Minister and [...]
Save Lives, Give Blood!
June fourteenth is celebrated annually as World Blood Donor Day. As early as eight o’clock, persons are encouraged to visit the National Blood Bank office inside the Central Region Compound [...]