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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
San Pedro Pirates F.C lose 1-0 against Placencia Assassins
Week three of the Premiere League of Belize (PLB) closing season saw yet another loss for the San Pedro Pirates Football Club. The island team was defeated in a 1-0 point game against the Placencia Assassins at the Michael Ashcroft Stadium in Independence village on Sunday, January 29th. The current standings have Verdes F.C at the top of the chart with nine points, followed by Belmopan Bandits with seven points and Freedom fighters F.C with six points. Placencia Assassins have five points and Police United F.C has four points, while the Belize Defense Force has three points and yet to make it on the chart are the San Pedro Pirates F.C and Dangriga Wagiya.
In the next match, the San Pedro Pirates will be playing at home. The game is scheduled to start at 3PM at the Ambergris Stadium. All islanders are invited to come and support the island team.
Missing Rangers Found in the Chiquibul Forest Reserve
January 31st, 2018, Park Manager Luis Ramirez and Park Ranger Elroy Villanueva have been found and will soon be reunited with their families.
The combined effort of the Belize Defense Force, the Belize Police Department and Forestry Department has successfully located both men who are unharmed. Ramirez and Villanueva, became disoriented and lost their way on Monday night away from the archaeological site. Today at 1:30pm they were found 2.5 kilometers Northwest of Caracol and 4 kilometers East of the Guatemalan border.
San Pedro Tiger Sharks overcome Verdes in their second game of the NEBL
The San Pedro Tiger Sharks recorded their second victory in the 2018 National Elite Basketball League (NEBL) Tournament on Friday, January 26th against Verdes. The island team traveled to San Ignacio in the Cayo District where they managed to snatch the victory from the home team with a final score of 96-84. The San Pedro Tiger Sharks will be hosting their first home game of the season at the San Pedro High School Auditorium on Saturday, February 3rd against Belize Smart Hurricanes.
Fans are encouraged to come out and support your favorite teams. All games start at 9PM.
JP & Commissioner of Supreme Court Resume Monthly Meetings
The San Pedro Association of Justice of the Peace and Commissioner of the Supreme Court resumes our Monthly Meeting, Wednesday, February 7 at 7:00 PM at our New Location; the NEMO Office located on the 2nd floor of the Wings Building, next to the Labor Office. All JPs are highly encouraged to attend this first meeting of the year as we continue to move forward in serving our Community. Important information, update of Annual General Meeting, Financial Report, upcoming events.
PUP Town Council slate hosts public meeting
With less than six weeks remaining before the 2018 Municipal Elections, the Belize Rural South People’s United Party (PUP) Town Council slate held a public meeting on Thursday, January 25th as part of their on-going campaign efforts. At the meeting, some of the main issues affecting the island were discussed, touching on crime, transparency, and infrastructure. The gathering also included specially invited guests, Mayor of Orange Walk Town, Kevin Bernard along with his Deputy, Ian Cal, who addressed and motivated the attendees on the capabilities of a PUP.
Two park rangers go missing in the Chiquibul Forest Reserve
On Wednesday, January 31st, the National Institute of Culture and History (NICH) officially confirmed that two Belizean Park Rangers attached to the Caracol Archeological Reserve in the Cayo District, went missing after heading out for a routine patrol.
Rangers Luis Ramirez and Elroy Villanueva were last seen on Monday, January 29th, when they went on an existing trail on the Chiquibul Forest Reserve and failed to return.
How Did Freshwater Crocodile End Up In San Pedro?
Chris Summers, ACES Daily Operations Manager and Field Biologist, was educating guests while surveying down Captain Shark's boatyard canal when he spotted a croc. He safely and humanely caught the crocodile, brought him inside the boat, and realized upon examination that what he had his hands on was actually a freshwater Morelet's Crocodile which are only found on the mainland, not the saltwater species we have on the island.
Though both species are native to Belize, the saltwater American Crocodiles can survive and thrive in both salt water and fresh water, while the freshwater Morelet's Crocodile cannot. Morelet's Crocodiles do not possess the ability to tolerate saltwater well and can rapidly dehydrate when exposed to these environments, eventually leading to death.
So how did this freshwater crocodile end up on the island? ACES is asking that very question and is hoping that anyone with any information will contact them.
Estel’s 7th Annual BBQ Cook-Off – Bigger, Better, Tastier!
Estel's Dine by the Sea was packed with patrons during their 7th Annual BBQ Ribs Cook-Off and the place was jamming with great music and lots to eat and much fun. Tickets sold out from the day before the event and those who did not have a ticket could only stare at everybody licking the BBQ sauce off their fingers and imagining the taste of the delicious meat. Being a judge at this competition is no easy task, as all BBQ grilling experts give it their all in making sure their ribs are seasoned and cooked to perfection. Not to forget the secret sauces they come up which only leaves everyone wanting more! Taking all three titles: Judges Choice, People's Choice and Grand Master Champion was Kevin Urbina and Pete Holmes took the prize for the beer drinking competition.
Misc Belizean Sources
SBDC Workshop: Introduction to Development Financial Statement Workshop
Mr. Jorge Gentle, Adviser, SBDCBelize, Beltraide. Location:
BTEC Training Room, ITVET Campus, Freetown Road, Belize City
Workshop Date:February 8th, 2018. Time: 9am to 3pm. This course is designed for individuals who need to understand basic accounting in order to interpret financial statements. It is ideal for individuals who are accountable for public funds but are not accounting experts!
Basic terminology and normal account balances are covered.
Please note: No computers are used in this course.
Includes lunch and refreshments.
WORKSHOP FOR TOURISM STAKEHOLDERS
WEDNESDAY, FEBRUARY 7, 2018.
09:00 – 13:00 (INCLUDING LUNCH AND WRAP-UP).
TIDE CONFERENCE CENTRE, 1 ML. SAN ANTONIO ROAD, PUNTA GORDA, TOLEDO.
TIDE executive director, Celia Mahung has been nominated as chairperson of the Local Tourism Committee (LTC) for the Toledo District Sustainable Tourism Project Phase 2. At the beginning of the year, through this project, training in communication and public relations was offered to service providers by BELTRADE personnel.
See invitation for upcoming workshop that offers stakeholders an opportunity to have input in tourism development in Toledo! Looking forward to your participation!
Paint N Splash
Hi everyone! Come paint “Parrot Fish” with us tomorrow at from 11:30-1:30!
TWO RANGERS STILL MISSING
NICH issues a report on missing rangers Luis Ramirez and Elroy Villanueva.
U.S. Citizen Town Hall Meeting
Tuesday, February 6 at 1:30 PM - 3:30 PM, The Aguada
#1 Aguada St., Santa Elena, Cayo.
At the meeting, we will introduce staff from the Embassy who provide assistance to U.S. citizens in Belize, discuss the services the U.S. Embassy provides, and answer questions you may have about our services. Topics include: security in Belize, hurricane preparedness, and information on renewing your passport via DHL.
Limited consular public services will be offered (cash; exact change required):
December 2017 External Trade & Consumer Price Index
The latest figures on consumer prices released by the
Statistical Institute of Belize show that, for the month of December
2017, the average Belizean Household experienced a one percent
increase in the cost of regularly purchased goods and services. The
All-Items Consumer Price Index stood at 105.1, an increase from
104.0 in December of 2016 (see Figure 1). For the year 2017, Belize
reported an annual national inflation rate of 1.1 percent.
During the month of December 2017, Belize’s
imported goods were valued at $167.2 million, down by 0.9 percent
or $1.6 million from the $168.8 million imported in December of 2016. The total value of Belize’s domestic exports for the month of December 2017 was $15.7 million, down 12.5 percent or $2.2 million
from the $17.9 million recorded for December 2016.
Belize Hotel Association at the 15th Annual New York Times Travel Show
The Belize Hotel Association, represented by 2nd Vice President Ms. Barbara Hall and Treasurer Mr. Rudy Gonzalez, attended the 15th Annual New York Times Travel Show, which took place on 26-28 January, 2018 at the Jacob K. Javits Convention Center.
The New York Times Travel Show is the largest and ultimate travel and tourism event in North America that aims at promoting tourism industries worldwide. With over 550 exhibiting companies representing over 170 travel destinations. Last year's show reached a new record of 30,099 attendees, the highest attendance in the show's history.
According to Monica Poling at Travel Plus "Although numbers are still being tabulated for 2018, the show's attendance could likely beat numbers set in a record-breaking 2017."
La Isla Carinosa Academy bake sale
Come out and support La Isla Carinosa Academy bake sale on Saturday February 3rd. Come out and support La Isla Carinosa Academy bake sale on Saturday February 3rd at 10am to 1pm. Special thanks to all the sponsors that made this bake sale possible!
Thank you for supporting education on Caye Caulker. These children are the future.
Thermocycler machine Donated
This morning the Ministry of Health received a donation of a Thermocycler machine through the collaborative efforts of the United States Embassy in Belize, Centers for Disease Control and Pan American Health Organization. A Thermocycler is a machine that will help staff at the Central Medical Lab conduct chain reactions of different viruses and pathogens to enable better detection and response to diseases and any other health emergency that may arise. For more information contact the Central Medical Lab in Belize City or the Ministry of Health.
Belize Defence Force and Belize Coast Guard Receive Donation from the United States of America
The Ministry of Defence wishes to inform the public that the Belize Defence Force and the Belize Coast Guard will receive Counter Narcotics sustainment equipment from the United States Government, on Wednesday, January 31st, 2018 at Price Barracks, Ladyville at 1400 hrs. The equipment was funded by the US Counter-Narcotics Program Office and provided by SOUTHCOM via the US Embassy’s Security Cooperation Office. The equipment is valued at $864,000 BZD.
This donation is part of the Counter Narcotics Program to provide non-lethal equipment and material assistance to Belizean Forces to counter the transfer of illegal drugs and weapons.
Carnaval Fiesta Block Party Booths
Booths Available for the Carnaval Fiesta Block Party only! Free of charge, for Saturday, February 10th! Sign up now at the San Pedro Town Council!
Arte con Voz de Mujer Exhibit
Corozal House of Culture, Launch March 2 at 7pm
Laugh Out Loud weekend at PRINCESS CASINO FREEZONE COROZAL
Live comedy show of "GUSTAVO LEON" this Friday, February 2nd and Saturday, February 3rd starting at 10:00 p.m. Come out, enjoy and get a chance to win! See you there.
A power outage is scheduled for a portion of the Orange Walk District on Sunday, February 4 from 6:00am to 8:00am
Entire Orange Walk Town, Laskot Subdivision, Guinea Grass, Carmelita, Chan Pine Ridge, Tower Hill, Palmar, Santa Martha, Trial Farm 1 and 2, San Lorenzo, San Estevan and Indian Hill. BEL to replace lightning arresters on the transmission system at the Orange Walk Substation.
Kindy take note of Archeological site closures
THURSDAY 1 FEBRUARY 2018:
THE ATM, BARTON CREEK AND NOHOCH CHEEN ARCHAEOLOGICAL RESERVES ALL REMAINS CLOSED DUE TO FLOODED RIVER CONDITION.
THE XUNANTUNICH ARCHAEOLOGICAL RESERVE REMAINS OPEN WITH PEDESTRIAN CROSSING ONLY AT THE FERRY. THIS SITUATION IS SUBJECT TO CHANGE.
ALL OTHER ARCHAEOLOGICAL RESERVES REMAIN OPEN.
PLEASE EXERCISE CAUTION AND BE VIGILANT FOR LOOSE EARTH, ROCKS AND WET SURFACES.
Partnership & Collaboration
We would like to thank the BDF soldiers who brought home Park Manager Ramirez and Ranger Villanueva. Also we would like to thank rangers from FCD, The Forest Department who were standing by. Jorge Leon thank you for calling with support.
That joyfull moment: NICH Rangers Found
Thanks to the impressive efforts and planning by the BDF and Police.
Press Release - Missing Rangers Found in Chiquibul Forest Reserve
Special thanks to all who assisted in the search for our missing rangers. They have been found safe and sound!!
Our precious Maya artifacts continue their tour of the United States museums
Maya Hidden World exhibition will be opening on February 10th, at the Milwakee Public Museum (Milwakee, WI). This exhibition features over 100 objects from Belize, including these jade and gold earspools. You can also symbolically adopt these precious pieces at the Museum of Belize, through our Adopt An Artifact program.
Slippery Rock Visits
Ya'axché Conservation Trust through its sustainable financing arm, EcoTourism Belize, had the pleasure of hosting an amazing group of young ladies from The Slippery Rock University! Their visit looked at the interconnections of the environment and human health. Another wonderful and fun filled day for the Slippery Rock University group. Started the morning with an ecofarm tour learning about agrofofestry and the importance of organic farming and the negative effects of slash and burn, followed by a chocolate making tour in the afternoon rain, and how the environment and human health are interconnected. Hiked a total of 6.5 miles through the jungle. The group can't stop talking about how much they are learning and the fun they are having. @sru_prm @ Toledo District
100 years old!
Our Maya Culture is alive as we recognize these two abuelitas with their tatara nieto who both have reached and passed the age of 100 years. Nojoch Chiich Ancelma Yam is a native Yucatec Maya of Patchakan village used to be a mid-wife who has served in the Corozal District for more than 80 years in that capacity. Nojoch chiich Emilia Eck is native Yucatec Maya of Cristo Rey Village in the Corozal Ditrict, as seen in a video clip in a previous post, she is very skillful in baking corn tortills over the comal from a home made fire hearth (Fogon). Not many women make tortillas, as abuelita Emil any more. Both are Fluent Maya speakers. We call these two icons "walking encyclopedias because they have a vast wealth of experience " .
NICH Rangers Found In Good Health
Tonight, two NICH Rangers are back in the company of their families after being missing in the Chiquibul Forest for two days. These are the pictures of Luis Ramirez - seen sitting in the truck - and Elroy Villanueva - standing in the pan at the junction of the Caracol and San Antonio roads. This is their first encounter with family. As you can see, they are unharmed and in good health, and were only dehydrated. They were found 2.5 kilometers Northwest of Caracol and 4 kilometers East of the Guatemalan border.
Ramirez is the Caracol Park Manager, while Villanueva is a Park Ranger at the site. They have been taken to the San Ignacio Hospital - where these images were captured a short while ago - and it shows them walking out of the emergency room - looking fine.
Trump Draws Line In Sand At State Of Union
Last night Americans and certainly people all over the world were tuned into President Donald Trump's State of the Union address. Everyone probably anxious and on edge, hanging on every word - waiting to hear what would come out of his mouth next. Trump discussed a number of topics including increased employment, tax cuts and reforms, immigration, national security and more. But among those matters, Trump also made it a point to revisit the outcome of December's UN General Assembly. That's where Trump declared Jerusalem the Capital of Israel. 128 countries including Belize rejected Trump's decision. Well in his State of The Union address, he made it clear that that vote marks a line in the sand. Here are his remarks and the explanation of what it means for Belize from the top ranking US Diplomat in Belize:
DPM Faber Hopes For Better Belize-US Relations
And while Galanek couched it diplomatically, it's a bold and ominous message - surely not surprising coming from Trump but what does the Government of Belize have to say about Trump's message? We spoke to Deputy Prime Minister Patrick Faber today and he said Belize has no beef with the US and that Trump should really re-consider before burning bridges with Belize.
Hon. Patrick Faber, Minister of Education:
"My heart sank, to an extent the president is right to an extent the extend is that America should have the right to do what they want, they are, just as the rest of us are, they are an autonomous entity..."
US: Trafficking in Persons Is Urgent Problem
And while Faber wants no quarrel with the US, looking at the fact that the superpower recently cancelled US work visas for Belizean citizens - it's clear the US has beef with us.
And that stems from the Trafficking in Persons report - or TIP - which has Belize as one of only two tier three trafficking countries in the western Hemisphere.
Today Galanek said that's the priority:..
Adrienne Galanek, Charge d'affaires - US Embassy:
"The legislation that is part of the tip report has requirements within it and provisions within it for consequences to that tier three ranking."
Belizeans Are Dreamers Too?
And another target of President Trump's ire is the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals or DACA program.
Many Belizeans have benefitted from the program which allowed some individuals who entered the country as minors and had either entered or remained in the country illegally, to receive a renewable two-year period of deferred action from deportation and to be eligible for a work permit.
Alleged Double Murderer Caught
The hideous double murder of sisters, 17 year-old Josephina Oh, and 19 year old Crecencia Oh, who were residents of the Western Toledo village of San Antonio stunned Toledo. Well, police have made an arrest. The man accused of chopping them to death is 20 year-old Wilmer Alexander Escobar, a labourer of Bella Vista Village in Toledo.
He was formally arrested and charged with 2 counts of murder, and he will be arraigned and remanded at the earliest convenience.
Another Closed Case For Belmopan Cops: Killer Charged
And, another alleged murderer has been charged - this one in Belmopan.
20 year old Devon Brooks - who was wanted for theft in Corozal - has now also bene charged for a murder in Roaring Creek. Police say he killed 26 year old Errol Gabourel in Roaring Creek on December 27th, 2017. Gabourel was found floating in the river with a gunshot wound to the head.
Man Cleared Of Savery Murder Charge
And while two have been charged for murder - one man got off a murder charge today.
Twenty-eight year old John Lorenzo Martinez who was charged with the murder of 38 year old prison warden Ernest Savery, was acquitted of the charge today by Justice Adolkph Lucas in a trial without a jury.
The prosecution's case fell apart when main witness, 23 year old Martin Teul became a hostile witness after he said he cannot remember what happened.
Customs Officer Burgled, Vehicle Gone Too
A customs officer's home was burglarized in San Jose Palmar, Orange Walk. 34 year old Zain Cabral left his home on Monday morning around 9:00 and returned yesterday morning around 7:00. When he got home, his kitchen window had been pried open and his bicycle, television and his black Mercury Mariner SUV were gone. The total cost is over $23,000. Our colleagues at CTV-3 spoke to Cabral over the phone about this break in.
Voice of: Zain Cabral, Robbed:
"It was sometime around Monday night somebody broke into my house and they stole my television set and my racing bike and they made good with everything. That's basically what happen. I made a report to police on Tuesday morning."
PUC Sends Down Water Rates
The Public Utilities Commission has reviewed the rates for the Belize Water Services, and they think that your water bill, starting April 1 should go down by 6.38%.
That was their initial decision after conducting an annual review proceeding for 2018 on the water company's rates. Currently, if you live on the mainland, you're being charged 17 dollars and 49 cents for every 1000 gallons of water you use from BWS. If this decision is adopted as final, that rate will go down to 16 dollars and 27 cents for every 1000 gallons of water you use.
This evening, the PUC held a press conference to make the announcement, and here's how Chairman John Avery explained it:
PUC Chair Arguing The Audit
Today's press conference also gave us a chance to ask Chairman John Avery about the allegations of reckless spending by the PUC.
Last month, the contents of an un-finalized audit were circulated to the press. They painted a picture of supposed lavish spending and misuse of public funds.
When we first started following the story, Avery told us that those documents were unsubstantiated, and today, he maintained that same position. This time, however, he provided the the final audit from their auditor Cedric Flowers, to prove that those leaked files were not showing the true financial picture of the PUC.
US Donates to Health For Flu Virus Detection
As we told you in our top segment, President Trump may have a serious score to settle with those countries who voted for that UN Resolution against the United States Embassy in Jerusalem - but, on the ground, assistance continues.
Today, the Embassy donated a neat and expensive piece of technology to the Central Medical Laboratory. It's called a thermocycler - and the donation is made in conjunction with the Centers for Disease Control. We found out how this tool will find out what strain of the flu virus is circulating in Belize:...
Tertiary Options and Opportunities Fair
If you are not sure which university to go to after high school or where the funding will come from, you would have surely benefited from today's Tertiary Options and Opportunities Fair. It was held at the St. Catherine's Academy Auditorium in Belize City. A number of US Colleges and Universities along with our local institutions had booths at the fair. Here's more:
Deryck Satchwell, Deputy Director, Tertiary and Post-Secondary Education Service
"This is a tertiary options an opportunities education expo. It is intended to have students particularly those who are at the secondary level right now have a chance to see what their options would be after secondary school and we are hoping that a good number of them at least will choose to further their education in tertiary education.
CDB Has 40 Mil For DFC
The Caribbean Development Bank has approved 40 million dollars more for the Development Finance Corporation to disburse in loans to Belizeans.
The DFC is Belize's only development bank. It provides financing in the productive sector, the residential sector, and student loans.
Well, the CDB has provided the DFC it's 8th Consolidated line of Credit, and today, the infusion of new funding was celebrated with an official launch. Here's what the lead speakers had to say about how this money will be used:
Belize And Guatemala Go Hat-in-Hand to OAS Permanent Council
It was a big day for Belize - Guatemala relations in Washington DC today, when the Permanent Council of the OAS held a special meeting - basically to ask for financial support for the referendum effort in both countries.
The Foreign Ministers from both countries made the pitch. They basically had to convince friendly nations that both Belize and Guatemala are committed to settling this dispute and going to the ICJ. That's because there's growing skepticism in the international community about the seriousness of this effort - since the special agreement to go to the ICJ was signed in 2008, 10 years later, no referendum has yet been held. Funding for the OAS adjacency office is drying up, and both counties need money for the referendum education campaign.
So, the OAS arranged the Permanent Council for both countries to convince the rest of the hemisphere that, despite, a decade of quibbling, they're serious, committed and on the final approach to referendums.
Hon. Wilfred Wary Of Referendum
And while they support going to the ICJ - referendums must first be held in both countries. And, just like democracy, that can be a messy business, because there are no sure outcomes. That's a variable in the whole equation - and Foreign Minister Elrington made it clear his ministry will drive hard for a "yes" vote:...
Hon. Wilfred Elrington- Minister of Foreign Affairs, Belize:
"We remain always mindful of the pitfalls that exist when one is dealing with referendums. It is very difficult to know what the outcome will be and therefore we can't leave anything to chance. And so, we are resolved to do all in our power to make sure that, like our governments, the populace of our countries see the importance, the absolute imperative of having this matter resolved at the International Court of Justice."
Guat FM Keeps An Eye On The Islands
And, in her presentation, the Guatemalan Foreign Minister outlined the history of this dispute - and reminded the gathering of what's the Guatemalans have their eyes on:…
Sandra Jovel- Minister of Foreign Affairs, Guatemala:
"Belize manifested its desire to negotiate and we are still in that process in hopes that on land and in the marine area and on the islands we can finally reach an understanding on the basis of a peaceful settlement of differences in accordance with international law."
The session lasted one and a half hours.
Rangers Back At Home Tonight
And one Belize - Guatemala story we are happy we don't have to report tonight is the one about the NICH Park Rangers who got lost.
Park Manager Luis Ramirez and Park Ranger Elroy Villanueva went missing on Monday evening and were found this afternoon at 1:30 by a BDF search team. They were 2.5 kilometers Northwest of Caracol and 4 kilometers East of the Guatemalan border. They were not disturbed or held by Guatemalan bandits who are known to traffic that area. They simply got lost in a hard rain and veered off known paths.