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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

San Pedro Pirates emerge victorious at Quadrangular Football competition
The San Pedro Pirates F.C won the Quadrangular Football Tournament held in San Pedro Town on Sunday, January 7th. Held at the Ambergris Stadium, four island teams participated in the competition; Legends F.C, Jokers F.C, Terror Squad and the San Pedro Pirates F.C. The tournament was held to better prepared the San Pedro Pirates, who will host their first match in the national tournament of the Premier League of Belize.

Ambergris Today

Director Of World Heritage Center Welcomes Oil Moratorium At Belize Barrier Reef
In a historic decision for marine conservation efforts, the Government of Belize has adopted a full oil moratorium for all Belize offshore waters, including the entire Belize Barrier Reef Reserve System World Heritage site. The Belize reef system is the second largest reef system in the world, with approximately 200,000 Belizeans dependent on the reef for their livelihood. “The World Heritage Committee has always taken a strong position that oil and gas exploration or exploitation activities are incompatible with World Heritage status. This moratorium is fully in line with this,” said Mechtild Rössler, Director of the UNESCO World Heritage Centre. “I would like to congratulate the Belize Government for its leadership and thank both civil society and the government for working tirelessly hand-in-hand to safeguard this site for future generations. This demonstrates that by working together, we can take powerful action to protect our irreplaceable marine sites.”

Misc Belizean Sources


Earthquake centered off Honduras
A earthquake rated 7.6 magnitude stuck off of Honduras last night led to the issuance of Tsunami Advisories for Belize which were cancelled at 11pm. I did not feel anything, just heard a rumbling sound, so went outside to try to figure out direction, but could not, so came in and put my back to the wall, but still did not feel anything, but heard it go on for a long time. Perhaps 20 - 30 seconds, which is long. But a house not far from you had their bed rattling, and budgies making a lot of noise. Dogs did not make any noise, during or after it.

Alternative Healing Workshop
Saturday, January 20, Corozal House of Culture. 9am-1pm. Lecture and practical session offered by Professors Maria "Maruch" Chabel Ruiz and Hilario Chi, of Quintana Roo. Learn how to treat many common ailments.

Ko'onesh Kanikesh t'an ichil Masewal
ritten by a Belizean Yucatec Maya Alfonso A. Tzul . It is written in the Maaya t'aan(Yucatec Maya) and has a part where you can learn Maya from English to Maya . Yucatec Maya is still spoken in the villages of Corozal,Orange Walk and Cayo .

Belize Bank Employment Opportunity
Teller position in San Pedro.

Mayan Ball Game, Pok-A-Tok
Have you heard about the Mayan Ball Game, Pok-A-Tok? Did you know there are youths who are practicing this athletic event which was played throughout the Maya civilization? Meet the Ek' Balam Belize group from Yo Creek, a talented group of youths who are extremely proud of their culture and want to keep it alive! Support local culture, support youths and local talent! - with Felicita Cantun, Joannie Cantun, Joannie Cantun, Franz Nov, Johann Nov, Luigie Gonzalez, Lucia Novelo, Menalio Novelo

Art in the Par, Corozal
2018 first Art in the Park. Saturday, January 13th, 2018

Rock the Reef Concert
Oceana had a celebratory concert for the permanent protection of the Belize reef. The World Culture Band represented Cayo amidst the wide range of amazing Belizean artists that performed at the event. The bill shows the true power of the people. Oceana's Rock the Reef free concert took place at the Memorial Park on Saturday, December 9th, 2017. The concert was held to celebrate the collective leadership and persistent involvement of tens of thousands of Belizeans for more than seven years on the issue of offshore oil in Belize. Given Belize’s economic dependence on our marine assets, the passing of the Petroleum Operations Maritime Bill 2017, that places an indefinite moratorium on offshore oil in Belize’s marine territory, safeguards our diverse marine environment and the Belize Barrier Reef from the inherent dangers of offshore oil. The stellar lineup of artists included Tanya Carter, Melonie Gillett, Dajah, World Culture Band, C Wills backed up by the Larubeya Band, Verge of Umbra, and Supa G.

Channel 7

Bullett Craig, In His Own Defence
Last night, we told you about the charges against the well-known taxi driver and social commentator, Roy "Bullet" Craig. The 76 year-old was charged with sexual assault after being caught by police with a 16 year-old boy in a hotel room last week Thursday night. The minor has given police a very detailed police report alleging that "Bullet" Craig tried to sodomise him. But tonight we have Bullitt Craig's side of the story - and it's a farfetched political conspiracy. Fittingly, he did it in front of the UDP Headquarters - which is the home of WAVE Radio where Craig is a regular caller and an ardent supporter of the UDP. He says it's all political victimization. Here's how he put it while explaining how that young man ended up in his hotel room on Dolphin Drive:

LGBTI Activist Distances himself From Bullett Craig
And while Roy Craig raves - Caleb Orozco says don't put him anywhere near this case. Tonight, the LGBTI Activist isn't happy with Channel 7 because we said Bullitt Craig was his stepfather. We were basing this on a relationship Orozco's mother had with Craig, but Caleb says he has no relationship with Craig and will not advocate on his behalf, or defend his actions in any way:... Caleb Orozco, Exec. Dir. - UNIBAM: "Professionally and personally I do not support. A relationship where there is more power on one side over the next. One. Second, being my mom relationship with Roy Craig has nothing to do with me. He was my mom companion and nothing more. Third aspect of this, is that people must need to understand that persons who experience or have, people who have individuals young individuals who have intellectual disabilities are seven times at higher risk of experiencing sexual assault. And as such, they can't give consent when their intellectual level is so low. In that regard, the issues around Roy Craig seems to highlight or attack my reputation as an individual and my organization reputation and its work."

Corporal to Court For Beating Teen
Two police officers have been criminally charged nearly a month after they allegedly beat up a 16 year old boy in Punta Gorda. Cpl Raul Ico and PC Ermo Coy were charged for Grievous Harm and Damage to Property. They appeared in the Dangriga Magistrate's court today and were offered and met bail of $3000. The incident happened in mid-December. The report is that 16 year old Victor Kus was heading home when the officers pulled up on him and asked what was in his pocket. He told the officers he only had his phone. But they didn't believe him and they hit him with an object. The officers broke 3 of Kus' teeth and they bruised his eye. He was never charged or detained for anything, and his father demanded court action.

19 Year Old Knocked Down And Killed By Family Friend
A 19 year old was knocked down and killed this morning in Burrell Boom. Kendell Goff had just got off a bus and was crossing the road when an oncoming vehicle hit him. His sister was one of the first on the scene to see his mangled body on the pavement. It is even more of a blow for the family because the man who knocked Goff down, is a family friend. Courtney Weatherburne has more on this fatal accident. Before the break of dawn, Kendell Goff races down from him upstairs home to his mother's kitchen for breakfast. He then gets ready and leaves for work. It is a routine his family has gotten accustomed to over the years. But this morning, he broke out of that humdrum and hopped on the 5:00 Mcfadzen bus. That's after Goff's father had told him 3 times that he should ride with him instead.

Belize's Murder Rate, Third Highest In Caribbean
On Friday in the House of Representatives, Minister of State for Home Affairs, Elodio Aragon said the official murder count for 2017 is 142 - which differs from our count of 145. We know what we included, and what the police left off - and we'll settle that when the Commissioner makes his statistical presentation next week. But, going with that official count, Belize's Murder rate is still one of the highest in the Caribbean. Statistics from the region show Jamaica at the highest with 1,616 murders, a 20% increase from 2016, which leaves them with a murder rate of 56 per one hundred thousand residents. The small island nation of St Kitts-Nevis is second with 23 murders - which is a reduction of 26% - but still the second highest rate of 42 murders per hundred thousand residents. And then Belize is third with its 142 murders officially recorded, a 5% increase over the previous year, which works out to a rate of 37 murders per one hundred thousand residents.

8 Years After Being Shot By a Cop, Buckley Calls For Case To Come Up
The last time Steven Buckley made our newscast, was back in February 2015 when he ended up in jail for unpaid court fines for drug possession charges. That's a long way from that day of relief back in August 2013, when he got a 50 thousand dollar partial payment from the Government of Belize as compensation after a police officer shot him in the face for no reason. But, now, that money is all spent. And while he waits for an opportunity to sue for the rest of that compensation, he's also complaining that the criminal case has not happened as yet. Police Inspector Dennis Lopez is out on bail, awaiting trial for attempted murder. He was the officer who allegedly shot Buckley. That shooting happened back in April 2010, and since Lopez's criminal charges, there has been no trial.

Cops Find Stash In Cemetery
Orange Walk Police found weed stashed in the town's cemetery. At around 9:45 this morning, officers from CIB and the Quick Response Team searched in the old cemetery on Cemetery Street, in Orange Walk Town. They found a thick bundle of shrink-wrapped weed, weighing 0.649 kilos - or almost a pound and a half. A magazine for an M-16 assault rifle, with 4 live rounds was also in the stash spot. No one was around, so, the items were deposited as found property.

Alleged Shooters Remanded
Belize City police have moved swiftly to charge a pair of alleged shooters who injured two men in a drive by. They are 24 year old Reese Fitzgibbon and 20 year old Jason Anderson - and tonight they are in jail. They appeared today before Senior Magistrate Aretha Ford and were charged with 2 counts of attempted murder, dangerous harm, wounding and 2 counts of use of deadly means of harm. Anderson alone was charged with abetment to commit murder. They were remanded into custody until April 9. The victims, 54 year old Steve Findlay and 30 year old Tyrone "Beans" Barcelona, were on Iguana Street when a black car drove up, three men got out and opened fire. 9 expended shells were found on the scene and 2 were found in the vehicle.

Pair of Accused to Court tin Orange Walk
Also appearing court today - but in Corozal were alleged murderer George Bull, seen here on screen right in blue, and driver Jesus Enrique Munoz on screen left in white. The two were taken to court in Corozal because Orange Walk has no Magistrate presently. George Bull a 39 year old Construction Worker from Carmelita Village was charged for Murder and Escape From Lawful Custody. He had been on the run from police for three weeks after slipping out of custody. He did so right after being positively identified as the shooter in the murder of Jaime Pelayo Jr. He was remanded to the Central Prison until his next court appearance on February 14th

Remanded For Machet Accusation
Tonight, 45 year-old Paul Jex Sr., a caretaker for the Belize Sports Council, is on remand after he was charged for chopping a man on the hand. The victim, Edgar Richards, says that on Friday, December 29, he was on standing on a street corner talking to a friend. Richards said Jex rode up on a bicycle, and chopped him on his left hand with a machete. Police investigated, and they charged Paul Jex Sr. with grievous harm, and use of deadly means of harm. He was arraigned today before Senior Magistrate Aretha Ford, who denied him bail and remanded him to the Belize Central Prison. He will be brought back before the court on April 9.

The Curious Case Of That Sweet Ketchup
Fried Chicken is a dish loved and eaten by Belizeans all over the country. And, without fail, it is served with that king of condiments, the dipping sauce supreme: ketchup. But there is something special about the ketchup that the Chinese serve with fried chicken in Belize. It has a unique taste - which seems to fall somewhere between traditional ketchup, and maybe...Red Fanta? We investigated and found out that what we call ketchup is actually something else - kind of like a distant relative. Sahar Vasquez found out more:

A Look Back To The Busiest Kitchen In Belize
And in doing research for that ketchup story - we stumbled into another from our archives about Belize's fried chicken and fast food fascination. Back in 2008, the dearly departed Keith Swift went inside the kitchen at Chon Saan - here's a look back at what he found in the fryer:.. Keith Swift Reporting: The building is a behemoth but its hulkish exterior, speaks nothing of the culinary conjuring and precision that happens inside. And this is the side of Chon Saan you don't know - the kitchen. If it looks like an assembly line in a factory â€" that is because Lee Mark Chang says it is. Lee Mark Chang, Manager - Chon Saan Palace: "In here is filled with smoke because the exhaust is trying to pull out the smoke and it is all noise. All the fire blowing, the exhaust fan, the hustle and bustle. So it gets really busy in here at certain times. We have a chain of command, a line, where everybody knows what they are supposed to do whenever certain orders come in. So every thing goes according to process."

Can You Help A Boy With Leukemia?
And, changing gears now….Evita Tillett's 9-year-old son Zinder Alexander has been sick with Leukemia for four years. The boy now has several tumours in his body and is in desperate need of medical care. As any parent in her situation would be, his mom is desperate for help and she came to us today to share more and ask for assistance. Sahar Vasquez: "So tell us about your son. How long has he been sick for?" Evita Tillett, Mother: "For four years he has been sick Leukaemia. Right now he has started again and within three days he is peeing blood."

Channel 5

Roy “Bullet” Craig Denies Assault of Minor, 16
Taxi driver Roy “Bullet” Craig is out on bail for the sexual assault of a sixteen-year-old minor in whose company he was surprised with when he was busted by the [...]

UNIBAM’s Caleb Orozco Rebuts Reports of Family Relationship
Prominent LGBT activist Caleb Orozco has, for better or worse, become the face of the fight against discrimination based on sexual orientation in Belize. In 2016, he won a monumental [...]

Orozco Says Inaccurate Reports Hurt Advocacy for LGBT Community
Before the Section fifty-three decision, in 2013 the National Assembly passed a raft of amendments to the Criminal Code to reform the law in relation to sexual offenses against children. [...]

Teenager Knocked Down and Killed in Burrell Boom
A nineteen-year-old truck driver was knocked down and killed this morning in Burrell Boom Village. Police say Kendell Goff was heading to work when a pickup truck hit him as [...]

Jerry David Charged with Accident Death; He Blames Blinding Lights
Police have arrested and charged Jerry O’hara David with manslaughter by negligence, causing death by careless conduct and driving without due care and attention for the fatal traffic accident that [...]

Court Drops Charges in San Pedro Brawl and Shooting
Two cops are home free tonight after charges against them were dropped in the San Pedro Magistrate Court. The duo was charged last April for firing indiscriminately at a crowd [...]

Jason Anderson and Reese Fitzgibbon in Court for Attempted Murders
On Monday night, police announced charges of attempted murder, use of deadly means of harm, dangerous harm, wounding and abetment to commit murder filed against twenty-year-old Jason Anderson and twenty-four-year-old [...]

For First Time, Women Outnumber Men on Supreme Court Bench
Time does fly, but it was twelve years ago, on the occasion of the Supreme Court opening in 2006 that Supreme Court Justice Michelle Arana was sworn in by then-Chief [...]

Trinidad CJ Fights Back, Questionable Photos Declared ‘Fake’
In regional news…we have been reporting on Chief Justice of Trinidad and Tobago Ivor Archie, who has come under fire from the Trinidad and Tobago Law Association. Today, he instructed [...]

Judicial Budget Close to 10 Million, but Still Miniscule
Government’s allotment of financial resources to the judiciary has always been an area of concern for Chief Justice Kenneth Benjamin.  As presiding judge of the Supreme Court for the past [...]

Bar President Reminds C.J. of Importance of Timeliness
While the Chief Justice lauded the improvements within the judiciary during his annual address, President of the Bar Association of Belize, Priscilla Banner, took a more sober approach to the [...]

San Estevan Ferry Remains Closed
The ferry in the village of San Estevan, Orange Walk, which links it with Progresso in Corozal and points north, has been closed from December twenty-ninth. At the time, the [...]

Start Your New Year in Good Health – Get Tested!
Men and women are exposed to a number of sexually transmitted diseases. This is why the checkups are recommended as often as possible. It is not costly and readily available [...]


Roy ‘Bullet’ Craig defends himself
Roy “Bullet’ Craig is speaking out against the allegations made against him by a 16-year-old male minor. The popular and outspoken Belize City taxi man says he did not sexually assault the minor when they were caught by police in a hotel room in Belize City on Friday night. The official police report says that …

Water shortage in Hopkins Village continues
Businesses in Hopkins Village are losing money as a direct result of a water shortage that has been plaguing the village for the past couple of months. As we have been reporting, over ninety percent of the village is either without running water or have little of it. The problem has been negatively impacting households …

SSB and CWU Resolve Dispute
The Christian Workers Union (CWU) has emerged victorious in a dispute that it had with the Social Security Board (SSB). Our source told us that in a meeting held today between CWU representatives and the SSB, it was decided that the calculation used by the CWU to arrive at their salary adjustment was accepted. While …

Belize ready for UNCAC
Representatives from Haiti and Tuvalu have yet to visit Belize for an inspection with regards to the United Nations Convention Against Corruption (UNCAC). Since Belize’s ascension to the UNCAC, the Attorney General’s Ministry has been preparing for an onsite inspection by professionals. Attorney General Michael Peyrefitte told the media that he expects the visit no …

19-Year-Old Killed in Road Traffic Incident
A nineteen-year-old was knocked down and killed in Burrell Boom Village, Belize District. The incident happened this morning around 5:30. According to police, the teenager, Kendall Goff of Double Head Cabbage Village, also in the Belize District, was crossing the Burrell Boom Road after getting off a bus when he was hit by a green …

Attorney General comments of extradition request
There is an extradition request for Belizean attorney Andrew Bennett. The United States of America wants Bennett for charges of alleged money laundering. As we have reported, documents show that the US government had carried out a sting operation in which an agent posing as a businessman interested in money laundering, contacted Bennett. The US …

The argument over a Facebook invitation
The argument between Leader of the Opposition, John Briceno, and Deputy Prime Minister Patrick Faber continued over a Facebook invitation. When the Minister hosted an open day at the Civic in Belize City, Faber who is the Minister of Sports invited Briceno and others of his party via a Facebook post to attend the launch. …

Cop in Critical Condition; 24-Year-Old Charged
Police have arrested and charged 24-year-old Jesus Enrique Muñoz for knocking down Police Constable Enid Tillett on Saturday night. Muñoz was charged on Monday for drove a motor vehicle without due care and attention, failed to give way when changing direction, negligent grievous harm and used a motor vehicle without third party risk insurance. Muñoz …

Pregnant Woman Dies Six Days After Traffic Incident
Shakira Guadalupe Villanueva, who was knocked down on January third, died yesterday morning at the Karl Heusner Memorial Hospital. The 28-year-old was on life support at the KHMH after sustaining serious injuries in the road traffic incident. She was hit by a sixteen-year-old minor who was driving a red Isuzu pickup as she tried to …

John Briceno calls out BTL for ‘sexist’ ad
On Friday there was more than one fiery exchange by members of both major political parties. When debating the BTL Loan, Leader of the Opposition John Briceno who has interest in BTL’s competition, SMART, said that the telecommunication giant needs to apologize for a sexist advertisement. Briceno was referring to a flyer posted on ‘Digicell …


Taxi man dies in Corozal Road Traffic Accident
One man is dead as the result of a road traffic accident that took place over the weekend in the Corozal District. On Saturday, January 6th, 52 year old taxi driver of San Joaquin, Erberto Tzul, was driving from Patchakan to Xaibe when he lost control of his vehicle. After losing control of his vehi...

Cyclist knocked down and killed on highway
Andres Diego is dead after being knocked off his bicycle on Sunday evening while on the Hummingbird Highway. On the 7th of January, police received reports of a Traffic accident that took place between miles 10 and 11 on the Stann Creek Road. In the middle of the road, the motionless body of 52 ye...

Police Constable critical following RTA
27 year old Police Constable, Enid Tillett is currently in a critical condition after colliding into an oncoming vehicle. On Saturday, January 6th, Tillett was travelling on the Belize Corozal Road using one of the Guinea Grass Substation’s motorcycles. Coming in the opposite direction was a Ford E...

Shakira Villanueva succumbs to traffic accident injuries
A woman who was hospitalized since last week following a traffic accident has succumbed to her injuries. On Monday January 8th, 28 year old Shakira Villanueva lost the fight for her life after she was knocked down last week Wednesday. Villanueva was walking towards the entrance of Guinea Grass Vill...

Couple robbed inside their establishment
A couple was robbed at their establishment in Mahogany Heights yesterday. The owners of The Mahogany Heights Supermarket, 76 year old Robert Zelaya and his wife, were held up inside of their establishment yesterday, on the 7th of January. Two male persons entered the establishment armed with firear...

Two injured in Belize City shooting
The latest shooting incident in Belize City has left two men recuperating at the KHMH. On Saturday, sometime around 2:30pm., Steve Philly and Tyrone Barcellona were fixing up a vehicle and socializing on Iguana Street in Belize City. While they were working on the car, a black Nissan Altima drove be...

Roy “Bullet” Craig charged with Sexual Assault
Well known Belize City Taxi Driver, 76 year old Roy “Bullet” Craig, has been arrested and charged for the offence of Sexual Assault. On the 5th of January, Craig was caught in a hotel room at Honey’s Hotel, naked, both he and a 16 year old boy. Reports are that around 7:00 p.m., the minor was walki...

Bill for loan with Sovereign guarantee for BTL
While that appropriation bill did not see much debate in the house, a bill that did see debate was one to approve a loan from Taiwan which wants a sovereign guarantee by government for Belize Telemedia Ltd. Prime Minister Dean Barrow: This is the International cooperation and development fund of the...

PM speaks on Leaked Audit of PUC
Yesterday, we reported on the leaked audit on the Public Utilities Commission. The leaked document occurred sometime early this week . It is a letter dated August 11 of 2017 addressed to John Avery, Chairman of the PUC. The letter raises questions over $50,000 dollars in donations for which the au...

PM satisfied that Fahreed case being properly investigated
Another current national issue has been the murder of Fahreed Ahmad which allegedly occurred at the hands of a police officer. The WPC was charged two days ago and the Ahmad family has since alleged that their family is being targeted and is actually on a hit list. Text messages purportedly from one...

Police say no evidence of Fahreed’s death being “state ordered”
Today, the Police Department issued a press release saying that contrary to what is being circulated on social media; police investigation has unearthed NO evidence that Ahmad’s death was a “state- ordered” execution. It says that the firearm issued to WPC Brown and the two expended shells recovered...

James Pelayo Murder suspect detained and charged
Police say they have made an arrest into the shooting death of 35 year old James Pelayo which had occurred on December 15 of last year. Pelayo was shot and killed as he stood in front of D’Gym Sports Bar and Grill in Orange Walk Town. Police had detained a suspect back then, 39 year old George Bull...

Minor impregnated by stepfather
Orange Walk police are investigating a case of unlawful sexual intercourse with a minor. On Tuesday January 1st, a 14 year old Student of Guinea Grass Village visited the Orange Walk Police Station along with her sister and reported that on two separate occasions in the months of July and September...

More Guns , ammo, and weed found
On Wednesday January 1st, police conducted an Anti- firearm and drugs Operation on Moya Street, Belize City. As a result the search lead to the discovery of one 9mm Pistol and 2 magazines with ammo. 188 grams of cannabis were also found. No one was in the area during the time of search. Then tod...

Possible financial repercussions for UN vote against Israel?
Yesterday, we told you of National Evangelical Association of Belize’s press release, expressing disappointment in Government’s vote at the United Nations against Jerusalem as Israel’s capital. The U.S. UN representative had also expressed disappointment in all the countries who voted against US mov...

Top Heavyweight boxer Jarrell Miller inspires Belizean youth
Belizean Jarrell Miller, known as the Big Baby ,is one of the top heavyweight contenders in the world . In fact, he is ranked in the top five by the WBA, the IBF and the WBO. Miller was born in Belize but migrated to the United States at the age of 6. He is currently on a visit to Belize and is usi...


Supreme Court’s ceremonial opening 2018
The ceremonial opening of the Supreme Court got underway this morning with an ecumenical service at the Wesley Methodist Church, from where the members of the judiciary and the legal profession paraded to the Supreme Court. At the Supreme Court, Chief Justice Kenneth Benjamin inspected a police Guard of Honor before proceeding into his courtroom for the addresses which kicked off the opening of the new legal year 2018. Chief Justice Benjamin said in his address that the ceremonial opening of the legal year is constitutional in its nature, since it prepares the way for the judicial arm of the state to carry out its functions, “which is to carry out justice through a system that is fair, prompt, independent, efficient and effective.” CJ Benjamin noted that the ability to fulfill this mandate is constrained by budgetary constraints and the availability of human and physical resources.

Pregnant woman dies 5 days after road accident
Shakira Villanueva, 28, has been fighting for her life for the last five days at the Karl Heusner Memorial Hospital (KHMH). However, sadly, she passed away at 2 o’clock this afternoon while receiving treatment for injuries she sustained when she was knocked down while crossing the road in Orange Walk. Police today revealed that they have not yet arrested the 16-year-old boy who was driving the vehicle that knocked her down at around 9 p.m. on January 3, causing her serious head injuries. Villanueva, said to be pregnant, was crossing the road at the entrance of Guinea Grass in Orange Walk District when an Isuzu pickup truck without license plates knocked her down.

Debate and vote on UHS $91.5 million due in February
Today, during a special sitting of the House of Representatives, Prime Minister Dean Barrow introduced a bill formally titled the “General Revenue Supplementary Appropriation (2017/2018) Bill 2018.” The purpose of the bill is to confirm that Belize will pay the $90 million arbitration award to the Belize Bank which was ordered by the Caribbean Court of Justice (CCJ) on November 22, 2017 in order to honour a guarantee that the Government of Belize (GoB) (under former Prime Minister Said Musa) had provided for a loan received by Universal Health Services (UHS) in 2004. UHS had defaulted on the loan, however, and so the government is being forced to pay that entity’s debt. The Said Musa administration was able to cover the loan of an estimated BZ$35 million with grants from the Bolivarian Republic of Venezuela and the Republic of China (ROC) Taiwan.

“Bullet”, 76, arraigned for sexual assault of boy, 16
Popular taxi driver and known supporter of the United Democratic Party and regular, vocal caller to the government radio station’s morning talk show, Roy “Bullet” Craig, 76, also known as “Street Vibes,” was calm as he walked past court photographers this afternoon at the Belize City Magistrate’s Court, where he was taken by police to be arraigned on a single count of sexual assault. Craig appeared before Magistrate Michelle Trapp and pleaded not guilty to the charge. There was no objection from the court prosecutor Corporal Kennard Clark, to the offering of bail by the court to Craig and Magistrate Trapp released him on a bail of $5,000 plus one surety in the same amount.

Butane “pain” coming soon to consumers
Exactly one year ago, the Belize Bureau of Standards issued a statement announcing an 18% increase in the cost of Liquefied Petroleum Gas (LPG), or butane. That increase put the cost of butane at $97 per hundred-pound cylinder in Belize City, and $102 in Punta Gorda. Reliable information to Amandala is that there will be another increase in the cost of butane within the next few days. We are told that the proposed rates will be discussed during Cabinet’s meeting tomorrow, Tuesday.

Things very, very good for brother Denys
In 2017, the administration of Prime Minister Dean Barrow paid out a jaw-dropping total of $5.3 million to the Barrow and Company law firm owned by none other than his brother, Denys Barrow. Leaked information from the government’s Smart Stream system revealed that there were 23 transactions from the government coffers to Barrow and Company for legal fees. However, two of those transactions were made in 2016 and another two of those transactions, one for $20,000 on February 16, 2017 and another on May 8, 2017 for $12,344,171.24, were cancelled. And so, the remaining 19 transactions, when calculated, amounted to $5.3 million.

Stage set for CYDP Peace Cup finals – FC Elite vs Kelly Street
After two very competitive semifinals game 1 a couple weeks ago, few expected what took place in the second leg of the CYDP Peace Cup semifinals on Saturday, January 7, at the MCC Grounds. Only 1 goal, a beauty by FC Elite’s super-talented midfielder turned striker, Orlando Velasquez, was scored in the first leg of the semifinals, where the opener saw Kelly Street and Tut Bay ending up scoreless, after which FC Elite clipped previously unbeaten Stars Academy, 1-nil. But in the second-leg semifinal clashes this past Saturday, the floodgates opened, with blow-out shutout scores in both games. In the opener this past Saturday, between FC Elite and Stars Academy, young Velasquez struck again, early in first half with a spectacular shot from just outside the eighteen that still has fans talking.

Weekend Warriors New Year’s Race 2018 results
Here are the results from yesterday’s Weekend Warriors (WW) New Year’s Race. The Race started at 9:15 a.m. for ”A/B” riders from Mile 40 on the Philip Goldson Highway, then headed down towards the Boom by-pass towards Hattieville, then a left on the George Price Highway, to finish at Leslie’s Imports, for 52 miles. The “C” class did a similar route, but started at the Crooked Tree Junction, for 42 miles. Of the 49 “A/B” riders that started, 47 completed the race in the following order: 1st Place – Barney Brown (Scotiabank, 2:12:12); 2nd Kirk Sutherland (Digicell-4G, st); 3rd Palas Joseph (Card’s Heating & Cooling, st); 4th Dwight Lopez (Bel-Cal, st); 5th Roque Matus (M&M Engineering, st); 6th Jose Juan Cuellar (Santino’s, st); 7th Warren Coye (Santino’s, st)...

Chief Thursday Race results – January 4
The first Thursday Race of 2018 started at 6:00 a.m. in cold weather accompanied by a strong head wind on the way to Hattieville. The field looked big; but it was only 23 riders. By the time we got to the 6-Mile bridge, a break had formed by 6 riders, including 3 Benny’s – Popie, Mark Staine and Nashen Ysaguirre – along with Ernest Bradley, Tariq Leslie and the Black Rocket – Fitzgerald “Palas” Joseph. By the time we got to Hattieville and returned to the City in a tailwind, Quinton had organized a chase with speeds in excess of 30 mph. Five miles after that, and upon reaching Mile 10, the carnage was clear, as the peloton was reduced to about 10 riders.

FFB President Sergio Chuc appears on Press Sports Show on Krem
The guests on the Press Cadogan Sports Show on Krem Radio yesterday morning were recently elected Football Federation of Belize (FFB) President, Sergio Chuc, and Vice-President, Cruz Gamez. The new President expressed great optimism for Belize football going forward, and praised the accomplishments of his predecessor, Marlon Kuylen, over the past year. There is now unity in the football family, declared Chuc; and this was reiterated later by Kulyen, who, when we contacted him, said he had shared breakfast that same morning with the visiting two executives. Kuylen, who held the post of Acting-President for one year until the stymied elections were finally completed on December 2, 2017, is now continuing in his substantive post of Senior Vice-President.

Editorial: A skunk in the room
It was the Kenyan anti-corruption crusader Professor PLO Lumumba who said that you can’t buy a mule and expect it to drive like a Mercedes Benz, or elect hyenas and expect them to take care of the goats, or something to that effect, in criticizing the experiences of people who elect less than honest persons and expect them to suddenly be paragons of virtue once in government. By now it’s a foregone conclusion that the ruling administration has lost its moral authority where corruption is concerned, but lest we forget, there was actually a time when this UDP government was considered a breath of fresh air – a welcome change from the treacherous and rotten 1998-2008 PUP administration. But something has gone terribly wrong; it may be that the train went off the tracks in the earliest days of the present administration and we were just too consumed with disdain for the PUP that we could not see, or were not willing to see.

The History of Money, & Paper Money
At the beginning, human beings were completely self-sufficient, a family taking care of all of its needs for food, clothing, and shelter. As time went on, families which had a surplus of goods, after a good hunt, for example, realized that it made sense to give their excess to their neighbors. In turn, when their neighbors had excess, they showed goodwill to the one(s) who had shared with them. It didn’t take long for neighbors to begin sharing goods all the time. A farmer who had a good cow, would barter his excess milk, with a neighbor who had a good fish trap. Thus, bartering began. “As societies grew more complex, barter flourished. The most famous example may be Peter Minuit’s swap in 1626 of $24 in beads and trinkets for the island of Manhattan. Its (Manhattan’s) property value in 1998 was assessed at $23.4 billion”. The Guide to Understanding Money & Investing (GUMI) The GUMI explains that it takes time to find someone who has exactly what you want, and who is willing to take what you have to offer, and who agrees with the value you put on your goods. “So, as trade flourished, money came into use.

PUP wrong; PUP right
The UDP is clearly in the right when they said in the House on Friday that the PUP was wrong to declare that BTL getting a sovereign guarantee for a loan the company was getting from Taiwan, was similar to the PUP providing a sovereign guarantee for a private group of investors (UHS) so they could get a loan from the Belize Bank. The UHS, before it all went wrong, was a privately owned hospital. The government had encouraged, blessed the investment of the group. The observable details in brief are that the PUP government, brilliantly, saw that Belize could use more sophisticated medical care; that Belize could make a lot of savings if we provided this type of care; and that Belize could, maybe, attract rich patients from abroad who could afford specialist care. The government that engineered the UHS “saw” the NHI coming on stream, a guaranteed source of revenue for the group at the UHS.

2017 ends with a bang … of bullets!
It is one thing for us to face the reality that our men are “killing up” each other on the streets and that there is an uncontrollable level of rivalry and violence among these gangs, but it is something else to come to terms with the reality that now the police have likewise taken up arms against the very citizens they are supposed to protect. Then added to that fact is that now it’s a female that is being accused of pulling the trigger … that too is new, as in these violent crimes the accused have always been male! The Fareed Ahmad case is not to be taken lightly, as it marks a turning point in the history of law enforcement and police credibility in this country. It has brought to light issues previously not being discussed, such as the creation of yet another paramilitary unit of the Police Department, in the form of the Special Assignment Team (SAT) which, unlike the Gang Suppression Unit (GSU), was not unveiled with much fanfare. But interestingly, if you really take a close look and pull off the veil, it is just the GSU that was morphed into SAT to do the work of GSU, under another name, but amazingly, under the very same commander, Sr. Sup. Marco Vidal.

UHS decision looming
As expected, the PM, at the first sitting of the National Assembly for the New Year, on January 5, introduced a motion for a bill to appropriate funds to pay $90 million to Michael Ashcroft’s Belize Bank. But there was no hurry in the PM’s game, the discussion on the crucial bill being set aside for discussion for the next sitting. Deputy Prime Minister, Patrick Faber, predicted that the first meeting would be anti-climactic. Faber told Channel Seven’s Courtney Weatherburne on December 21: “I think that it is the intention of the Prime Minister to introduce the motion and then nothing really says that he has to push it through all the readings in one sitting and I believe it is the intention for him to just introduce it and then at a subsequent meeting the debate on the merits of it will actually be made and then the voting will take place.”

Police’s Special Assignment Team (SAT) under a cloud of suspicion in Fareed Abdul’s murder
Following today’s special sitting of the House of Representatives, Prime Minister Dean Barrow weighed in on recent developments surrounding the controversial killing of popular barber, Fareed Ahmad, 39. In our last edition of the Amandala, we had reported that text messages have surfaced suggesting that Fareed’s brother, Abdul Ahmad, had been threatened by the police’s Special Assignment Team (SAT). We note that Woman Police Constable (WPC) Michelle Brown, 24, who was charged with Fareed’s murder, was a member of the SAT.

Regarding US extradition request for attorney Andrew Bennett, AG Peyrefitte says no paperwork yet from Foreign Affairs
News broke last week that the United States Government has issued an extradition request to the Belize Ministry of Foreign Affairs for Belizean attorney Andrew Bennett, who has been indicted in the US territory of Puerto Rico on 7 counts of money laundering and for whom an arrest warrant has been issued in that territory since 2015. Reporters caught up with Attorney General Michael Peyrefitte today and inquired about the status of the US extradition request. Peyrefitte confirmed that his ministry, which will prosecute the extradition request on behalf of the US Government, has not received the necessary paperwork for the process to go forward.

Cop in serious condition after road traffic accident
Police have today arrested and charged Jesus Enrique Muñoz, 24, with a string of traffic-related offences after he was involved in a road traffic accident which almost claimed the life of a police officer. At about 10:15 p.m. on Saturday, Constable Enid Tillett, 27, attached to the Guinea Grass substation, was driving a motorcycle on the Belize-Corozal Road in Orange Walk Town when a Ford Escape driven by Muñoz that was heading in the opposition direction entered his lane and collided with him.

UDP favourite now a Supreme Court judge
Despite concerns raised by the Opposition People’s United Party (PUP), long-time United Democratic Party (UDP) favourite, Marilyn Williams, was today appointed to serve as a Supreme Court judge. Her ascension to the office was witnessed by the Chief Justice, Kenneth Benjamin, whom she is to assist with the clearance of a backlog of criminal cases that await judgement. The ceremony was also attended by other judges of the Supreme Court, as well as relatives and friends of Williams. Williams is expected to be a part of the ceremonial opening of the Supreme Court on Monday, January 8. Following the official opening of the new legal year, the new Justice of the Supreme Court is expected to begin sitting on cases.

Breaking Belize NewsPJ

NEMO issues Tsunami warning for entire Coast of Belize as earthquake strikes off Honduran Coast
The National Emergency Management Organization (NEMO) issued an advisory a short while ago advising the […]

Tsunami warnings issued for Caribbean including Belize
The United States Tsunami Warning Center has just issued a warning that hazardous tsunami waves are possible […]

7.8 magnitude Earthquake shakes Honduras; felt in Belize
The United States Geological Survey has reported that around 9:00 tonight, a 7.8 magnitude earthquake struck […]

Extradition proceedings underway for attorney Andrew Bennett
Attorney General Michael Peyrefitte said this week that the Government of Belize is moving forward […]

Pregnant mother dies after traffic accident
Last week, Shakira Villanueva, a pregnant woman, was knocked down in Guinea Grass village while […]

Elrington pleads Belizeans not to provoke Guatemala
Last week, BBN reported on an incident that occurred while Wil Maheia of the Belize Territorial […]

142 people murdered in 2017, says Police Minister
At last week’s House Sitting, Leader of the Opposition John Briceno called out the government citing […]

Commission of Inquiry coming for UHS
Prime Minister Dean Barrow has announced that a Commission of Inquiry will be appointed to look […]

Barrow asks US to respect Belize’s decision at the UN
On Friday, the media took the opportunity to ask Prime Minister Dean Barrow about the United […]

Taxi man killed in traffic accident
Erberto Tzul, a 52-year-old taxi man from San Joaquin, Corozal was killed in a traffic accident over […]


Recado: adding color to Belize cuisine
It’s an essential staple in Belizean kitchens, and responsible for that special color in the chicken that tops our national dish. Recado is distinctive in both color and taste, adding a rich hue to meats and gravies. Also known as achiote paste, recado is a combination of rich spices, based around the annatto seeds that give it the rich red color. For as long as I’ve been around Belizean kitchens, whether they be top-of-the-line modern or the modest fire hearth, dirt floor, thatch roofed open air fogon spaces, there’s always been a block or hunk of red paste nearby.

New Year, New Life, New Business?
It’s that time of year when everyone is making their resolutions. While many of us are listing things like eating healthier and exercising a little more, some people are making bigger resolutions. Major life changes and planning how to fulfil their desire to work and live a tropical island lifestyle now, instead of waiting till they are ready to retire to make their move. Kendall Beymer and his family have owned and operated Ecologic Divers for the past 6 years. Kendall moved from Denver, Colorado and a 26 miles workday commute to island life and a 26-yard walk to work. He traded in his windowless square box for an office with an amazing view.

International Sourcesizz

Strong quake in Caribbean Sea shakes Honduras, Mexico and Belize, no tsunami
An earthquake of magnitude 7.6 that struck near remote islands belonging to Honduras on Tuesday was felt across northern Central America but there were no immediate reports of casualties or major damage. The quake rattled windows in the Honduran capital of Tegucigalpa roughly 323 miles (519 km) to the east and was felt at least as far north as the Mexican state of Quintana Roo, but no damage was immediately reported. Rodrigo Anaya Rodriguez was in a hammock inside his house near the popular tourist site of Bacalar Lake near Mexico’s Caribbean coast when he felt three tremors. “It felt like a bulldozer was driving past,” he said. “It didn’t last long but was very violent.”


  • Belize Howler Monkeys, 11sec. Surrounded by the eery sounds of howler monkeys in Belizean forest.

  • Whit's 40th in Belize, 21min. Thanks for an awesome trip to Belize Whit! Let's do it again!!

  • PARENTS OF COPPER BANK STAGE PROTEST AGAINST TEACHER….WE HAVE BOTH SIDES OF THE STORY, 5min. Trouble is brewing in the normally peaceful community of Copper Bank Village, between a group of parents and the head administrator of the local Catholic Church-managed primary school. Today we went to the community and found a group of parents up in arms and demanding that their concerns be addressed.

  • Bull was remanded to the Central prison for the murder of Jamie Pelayo, 3min. While inside the court, Bull was remanded to the Central prison for the murder of Jamie Pelayo, outside, Pelayo’s wife had a bone to pick with the Orange Walk Police Department. According to Elisa Zetina, Pelayo’s wife, for several days she has been denied information pertaining the case against Bull, including proper information of when he was to appear in court

  • UNICEF Belize - Accomplishments & 2018 Agenda on Open Your Eyes, 40min.

  • Creating Healthy Meal on Open Your Eyes, 26min.

  • Planning for Emergencies - Guidelines for Families on Open Your Eyes, 20min.

  • The Power of Yoga Documentary on Open Your Eyes, 26min.

  • Mexico Rocks, Belize… Under the Sea, 4.5min. Mexico Rocks, Belizean Barrier Reef... Snorkeling Mexico Rocks is great, and it is only a short boat ride out of the town of San Pedro on Ambergris Caye in Belize. It is located about one third of the way up the coast of Ambergris Caye. Mexico Rocks is a shallow patch reef Central America.

  • Goodrich Trip to San Pedro, Belize, 4.5min.

  • Belize tumblers, 4min.