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Today's Belize News: November 30, 2018 #533525
11/30/18 06:58 AM
11/30/18 06:58 AM
Joined: Oct 1999
Posts: 65,154
oregon, spr
Marty Offline OP

Marty  Offline OP


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Specials and Events

Last night's TV news on Channel 7, Channel 5, LOVETV, PGTV, and CTV 3. Also with the most recent Open Your Eyes, and other specials

The San Pedro Sun

Prime Minister Barrow to Remain in Office Until 2020
Cabinet at its meeting, November 27th, discussed the United Democratic Party’s (UDP) current trajectory heading towards the 2020 general elections. Ministers expressed great satisfaction at the evidence of support for the UDP, as measured by the large voter turnout at the UDP contested standard bearer conventions taking place every weekend since November 4th. Cabinet took note of the fact that these contests have been as fierce as the turnouts have been huge. In that context, Cabinet felt that once the standard bearer conventions conclude in mid-December, there should be a break in the remaining convention schedule to allow for healing and an organizational reset to take place at the individual constituency level.

Regular Gasoline drops to the lowest price of the year
Following a number of increases in 2018, the price for regular gasoline has dropped to its lowest figure of the year. The Belize Bureau of Standards (BBS) informed that effective Friday, November 23rd, regular gasoline went down from $10.63 to $9.95. While this price will be reflected only on mainland pumps, the price for fuel here in San Pedro will see a slight reduction as well. While the price for regular gasoline went down, other fuels saw an increase. Premium gasoline went up from $11.49 to $11.50, Diesel went up from $11.15 $11.16, and Kerosene went up from $8.69 to $8.70. The one-cent increase in these prices are the smallest increases recorded in the entire year. This last price change is fuel in the 25th adjustment observed for 2018.

GOB introduces an amendment to block tax refunds for tour operators
To ensure the Government of Belize (GOB) has enough funds to cover their bills, Prime Minister Dean Barrow presented a bill to the House of Representative to amend the General Sales Tax (GST) Act. The amendment would see local tour operators not being able to collect their tax refunds as dictated by the law. The tourism sector is one of the single largest contributors of GST, and the petitioned amendment could result in financial issues for many businesses. Barrow introduced the bill under the grounds that tour operators are “invalidly collecting” tax refunds. According to Barrow, the amendment is needed to prevent issues such as the recent Caribbean Court of Justice (CCJ) ruling between Cruise Solutions and Discovery Expeditions and the Commissioner of GST.

3rd Belize International YOGA Festival to be held in Belize City
On Saturday, December 1st the 3rd Annual Belize International YOGA Festival will be held in Harbour View Greens, Belize City. The Belize International Yoga Festival (BIYF) is a non-alcoholic, family-friendly annual event bringing together yoga practitioners from all over Belize and beyond introducing the relaxation, reflection and healthful benefits of yoga and holistic healing practices to the wider Belizean community. The festival will include over 30 free yoga classes ranging in health workshops and lectures, kids’ classes, yoga nidras, kundalini and breath work classes, and guided meditation. Healing therapies and massages, henna tattoos, jewelry, artwork and great eats will also be on sale at the festival.

San Pedro Belize Express begins to pay for using Municipal Dock
After over a year without paying docking fees to The San Pedro Town Council (SPTC), water taxi company, San Pedro Belize Express has reportedly started paying for the usage of the municipal dock. The company had relocated following Hurricane Earl in August of 2016 but was not paying anything to use the public pier. Mayor Daniel Guerrero confirmed that after much pressure, as of May of 2018, the water taxi carrier began paying a flat monthly fee of $2,000. However, Area Representative Honourable Manuel Heredia Jr. is at odds with the SPTC, as he claims that the facility is being used by a small sailing boat called ‘La Gaviota,’ whose owner is not paying any fees. This is the alleged reason why the water taxi company had not been paying for the past months, as Heredia reportedly instructed them not to do so until the SPTC began charging the owner La Gaviota for using the said docking facility.

Ambergris Today

Will Coconut Drive Become A One Way Street?
For weeks now, mysterious covered signs along Coconut Drive have San Pedro Town residents speculating what said signs will indicate. At a couple intersections residents have gone as far as creating tares in the plastic bags covering them. Exposed sign at the intersection where Island City Supermarket is located, on Coconut Drive, says “Do Not Enter” indicating that Coconut Drive would be made one way with traffic flowing south to north. Remaining covered signs would suggest the this would start at the Caribeña Fuels south gas station on Blake Street.

Queen Elizabeth Commends Belize On Progress On Tackling Blindness In Diabetics
The Queen Elizabeth Diamond Jubilee Trust commends progress achieved in Belize to tackle blindness caused by diabetes The Chief Executive of The Queen Elizabeth Diamond Jubilee Trust (the Trust), Dr Astrid Bonfield CBE, met with the Government of Belize and leading eye health experts on Mnday, November 26, 2018, to thank and commend them for their efforts to prevent blindness caused by escalating rates of diabetes across Belize.

Misc Belizean Sources


Closing of 2018 Atlantic Basin Hurricane Season
Friday 30th November marks the closing of the 2018 Atlantic Basin Hurricane Season. The 2018 Atlantic hurricane season was forecasted to be normal to slightly above normal in the Atlantic Basin (North Atlantic Ocean, Caribbean Sea and the Gulf of Mexico) this year. The season turned out to be above normal, but more specifically above normal in the North Atlantic and normal over the other areas of the basin. A total of fifteen named storms and one tropical depression formed. Of these fifteen named storms, eight (8) became hurricanes and two (2) reached major hurricane status - category three (3) or higher on the Saffir-Simpson Hurricane Wind Scale.

Jenelli Fraser- Ms.Universe Belize 2018
I trust my new journey. Pray for me! Here I go...

Nassau Grouper Is Now Critically Endangered
The Nassau grouper (Epinephelus striatus) is now a critically-endangered species. That’s according to a new report from the International Union for Conservation of Nature, IUCN. This means that populations, including spawning aggregations, have declined by more 80% over three generations (1980-2018), for Nassau grouper fish, which live approximately 16 years. Nassau grouper now face an extremely high risk of extinction. The main threats, according to IUCN, are over-fishing due to heavy fishing on spawning aggregations; and loss of quality coral reef habitat.

“A project whose tremendous benefits could never be overstated, and which represents yet another great example of what can be achieved through the deepening relations and cooperation between our two countries”. That is how CEO in the Ministry of Transport, Ruth Meighan, described the Belize Motor Vehicle Registration and License System executed in partnership with the Government of Taiwan. Elaborating on the benefits of the project whose first phase is nearing completion, CEO Meighan explained, “This first phase enables Department of Transport branches countrywide to share information in real time, and to apply standards that have been reviewed and updated in our laws. By the time the project is fully rolled out, other objectives that will be achieved include, interconnectivity with other supporting agencies (public and private)..."

Mrs.Kim Simplis Barrow in Chile
Mrs.Kim Simplis Barrow, Special Envoy for Women and Children, is currently in Chile alongside Sole Meighan, President of the Children’s Advisory Body in Belmopan and youngest youth ambassador attending the conference, Alicia Barcena, Executive Secretary of the Economic Commission for Latin America and Caribbean , Sandra Granger, First Lady of Guyana, Henrietta Ford, Executive Director at UNICEF, Dr. Carla Barnett, Senator of Belize, Maria Cristina Perceval, Regional Director for Latin America and Caribbean UNICEF and Jared Cain, also a youth delegate of Belize. The Regional Dialogue is themed “On the Road to Equality”: 30 Years of the Convention of the Rights of a Child.

IV Meeting of the Belize – Guatemala Joint Commission
Office of the OAS in the Adjacency Zone. November 29, 2018. The IV meeting of the Guatemala-Belize Joint Commission was held on Wednesday, November 28th in the Office of the Organization of American States (OAS) in the Adjacency Zone. The meeting was headed by the Commissioners of both countries, the Ambassador of Belize in Guatemala, H.E. Alexis Rosado and the Ambassador of Guatemala in Belize, H.E. Georges de La Roche. The Commissioners were accompanied by Mr. Manuel Washington Abdala, Special Representative of the Secretary General of the -OEA- for Guatemala-Belize matters. This meeting focused on the implementation of the Agreement between both countries for the Protection of the Environment and Sustainable Use of Resources that was signed in December 2014, and it included participants at the technical and official level of relevant ministries and departments of government from both countries.

Belize Among National Geographic’s Best Trips 2019
Belize’s growing popularity as one of the best vacation destinations in the world and the recent efforts to protect Belize’s Barrier Reef System has won the country an important accolade from National Geographic, which has placed Belize among is Best Trips 2019 list. In making the announcement National Geographic praised Belize for making big waves in marine conservation. “In June 2018 the Belize Barrier Reef System, which Charles Darwin deemed “the most remarkable reef in the West Indies,” was removed from the UNESCO World Heritage site danger list.

Twin Town Annual Tree Lighting ceremony
It's the Twin Town Annual Tree Lighting ceremony on December 7th, 2018 at 6:30 p.m. Don't Miss it!

Speaker of the House of Representatives of Belize Attends 52nd Session of the African, Caribbean and Pacific Group of States (ACP) Parliamentary Assembly
The Speaker of the House of Representatives, Honourable Laura Tucker Longsworth, is in Cotonou, Benin, attending the 52nd Session of the ACP Parliamentary Assembly and the 36th Session of the ACP-EU Joint Parliamentary Assembly, which is being held from the 28th November to the 5th December 2018. The Honourable Madam Speaker attended the meeting of the ACP Committee on Social Affairs and the Environment which was held today, 29th November. At the meeting, participants reviewed and discussed proposed amendments to the Committee’s Draft Report on Combatting the Destabilizing Effects of Wildlife Trafficking in ACP countries and the Draft Report on Reducing the Global Number of Out-of-School Children, Adolescents and Youth in ACP countries.

Training for Trainers: On Child Labour for Labour Inspectors
The Ministry of Labour, Local Government and Rural Development has been collaborating with the United States Department of Labour-Funded Country Level Engagement and Assistance to Reduce Child Labour II Project (CLEAR II), implemented by Winrock International, Verité and Lawyers Without Borders, to strengthen systems to address child labour. As a part of these efforts, a Curriculum for Labour Inspectors was developed, and a Training of Trainers Workshop was held from the 26th – 29th of November, 2018 at the Ramada Princess Belize. The training was designed to train labour inspectors and officers of the Immigration, Education, Police, and Human Services Departments, and the Social Security Board which are responsible for monitoring and enforcement of child labour law. It was also to introduce these individuals to the methodology and content of the curriculum and allow them to practice delivering lessons and leading exercises.

Office of the Auditor General receives training with IDB support to enhance service delivery
As part of its support to strengthen public financial management systems in Belize, the Inter-American Development Bank (IDB) and the Office of the Auditor General partnered to host a three-day training course on new and innovative methods for effective communication and report writing for enhanced service delivery. The course, which was held from November 26 to 28 in Belmopan, was facilitated by communications expert, Ms. Sarah MacFayden of the Canadian Audit and Accountability Foundation and attended by 23 staff members of the Office of the Auditor General. The course is expected to enhance the communication skills of the staff and to improve the performance of the Office of the Auditor General in conducting its oversight of public spending.

Belize Police Department Receives Donation of Bullet Proof Vests
he Belize Police Department is the proud recipient of 500 intact pre-owned bullet proof (ballistic) vests that were generously donated by the Miami-Dade Police Department under the leadership of Chief Juan Pérez. The handing over ceremony took place today, November 29th at the Eastern Division Region One Headquarters in Belize City. This donation is a result of the collaboration between the Miami-Dade Police Department and the Association of Caribbean Commissioners of Police of which the Belize Police Department is a member. This is the second donation of vests made to the Belize Police Department through this partnership. In 2017, 200 bullet proof vests were received and distributed to police officers countrywide.

Statement on the International Day of Solidarity with the Palestinian People
The Government of Belize today joins in the observance of the International Day of Solidarity with the Palestinian people. On this day, Belize reiterates its support for and solidarity with the Palestinian people who struggle daily to maintain their dignity in the face of violence, lack of access to basic services, and denial of their fundamental human rights, including the right to free movement. The Government of Belize remains concerned about the incremental and steady loss of Palestinian territory in contravention of United Nations resolutions including Resolution 181 on the partition of Palestine, which was adopted on November 29, 1947.

Do you need FREE legal advise and assistance in one of the following? * Criminal Law * Family Law * Immigration Law * Labor Law * Wills * Domestic Violence * Landlord and Tenant * Asylum The Bar Association of Belize will be providing a FREE legal clinic in Corozal Town on December 15, 2018 at the Magistrate Court.

65 Hospitality professionals from various properties receive certifications
CONGRATULATIONS! 65 Hospitality professionals from various properties received certifications from the American Hotel & Lodging Educational Institute (AHLEI). This past week the Hospitality Training Services of Belize had a visit from Carlo Novelo, Vice President of international sales at AHLEI. Mr. Novelo was here to participate in our first certification ceremony in which 125 Belizeans received professional certifications from the American Hotel & Lodging Educational Institute in various fields. Their first day started on Sunday 25th November in San Pedro at Banyan Bay Suites where 26 staff members were certified as guest service professionals.

BHA Biannual Meeting
Join us on Friday, December 7, 2018 at the Best Western Belize Biltmore Plaza Hotel for our Biannual Meeting in partnership with Travalliance Media, where you can hear what the Association has been doing for you for the past few months. Dynamic Keynote Speaker, Mrs. Stacy Cox will be discussing Best Practices and Tourism Trends in the Caribbean Region. Morning seminar to be hosted by Travalliance Media, talking about new marketing strategies that can improve the way you do business. Call us at 223-0669 or email us at [email protected] to confirm your attendance.

Turtle Rescue
"The morning started with an emergency delivery by the rangers of the Sarteneja Alliance for Conservation and Development (SACD) - these guys are super-committed in ensuring the viability of the marine life of the Corozal Bay seascape...and work in partnership with the fishers to keep wildlife safe. This turtle, weighing in at about 200 lbs, was rescued by one of the Sarteneja beach trap fishers. Seeing it had injuries, he brought it to SACD, who then brought it to Wildtracks. We are now working with Hol Chan Marine Reserve to seek the best solution for this amazing reptile. It is collaborations and partnerships like these that make wildlife conservation in Belize work."

Corozal Tree Lighting Ceremony
The show must go on. Everyone is invited to join our Corozal Community for the Tree Lighting Ceremony at the Corozal Central Park on Saturday, December 8th at 7:00 P.M. Merry Christmas!

Placencia Power Outage next Tuesday
Power outage scheduled for 7:00 a.m. to 12:00 midday on Tuesday, December 4 to affect entire Placencia Village and Malacate area of Independence Village. BEL to replace utility poles on Malacate Beach and repair hotspots in the area.

Cayo Christmas Tree Lighting 2018
The SISE Town Council is having the annual Christmas Tree Lighting ceremony next Friday, December 7th, at 6:30pm, at the Cayo Welcome Center. "Twin Town residents you are all invited to our Annual Tree Lighting ceremony on December 7th, 2018 at 6:30 p.m."

ICJ Lecture Series in Benque
Want to know more about the ICJ and upcoming referendum? Come out to hear presentations by Assad Shoman, the Belize Peace Movements and others at the Mount Carmel Auditorium in Benque Viejo Del Carmen Everyone is invited!

How does the ICJ dispute affect Belize?
The longer the dispute continues, the more problems it will cause. The image shows how population growth in Guatemala, transnational crime and developmental pressures have led to deforestation in Peten and is already affecting Belize. Fully demarcated borders and better cooperation with our neighbor can help alleviate these harmful trends.

Paradise Theater playing this weekend
The House with a Clock in Its Walls, Venom, The Predator, The Nun

Channel 7

Cops Charge Man for Marta Gonzalez Murder
Police have cracked the Marta Gonzalez murder case. They have arrested and charged 21 year old Christopher Bradley. Police picked him up in Pomona and according to the family, Bradley was actually at the house on Tuesday when the police arrived to search for Gonzalez’s body. But he left for work shortly after. When we spoke to Gonzalez’s son in law today, he said he can’t say for sure if Bradley owed her and was just trying to get out of the debt by killing her or if he just wanted to rob her. Based on his information Bradley is known to be violent in the village and has gotten off previous assault charges. Today at the press briefing the police told us it is a case of robbery turn murder. Here is more.

Montenegro’s Want Closure for Loved One Nerry
The family of Nerry Montenegro is desperate. They want to know if the body that was found in the New River near the Orange Walk bypass is his. But there are no concrete answers at this point because the post mortem is inconclusive. We will get to the police report on this case but first, to Montenegro’s mother. Our colleagues at CTV-3 went to speak to her at the family’s August Pine Ridge home. She says she reported him missing on Monday and since then she hasn’t heard anything from him. The family just wants closure.

Police Still Can’t Confirm Identity of Orange Walk Body
As we told you, the post mortem could not reveal the cause of death because of the advanced state of decomposition. The only detail they could get from the examination was that the man died 4 days ago. Here is more from police. ACP Joseph Myvett - Head, NCIB: "Orange Walk police responded to information of a body floating in the New River. As a result they were able to secure a boat where an area was visited 1.8 kilometers northeast of the Orange Walk bypass bridge where upon arrival the body of a Hispanic male was seen floating as a result, the body was moved to the side of the river where it was observed that it was missing both arms as well as the face was severely disfigured as well as the abdomen..."

BPO Bus Burnt up on Highway
About 45 Transparent BPO employees are fortunate to be alive after their bus burst into flames on the way to work. It happened around 6:45 this morning between miles 8 and 9 on the Phillip Goldson Highway. Courtney Weatherburne was on the scene. Here is her story. A routine trip to work turned into a ride to hell when this Transparent BPO bus caught on fire. Insp. Wilfredo Ferrufino - CIB Investigator: "Ladyville police responded to a bus fire between 8 and 9 miles on the Phillip Goldson Highway. Upon arrival they discovered a bus that is owned by Transparent BPO on fire." According to the bus driver, Branson Rhaburn, he was heading to Belize City from Orange Walk. It was a smooth ride until he picked up a passenger at this Ladyville bus stop.

Donald Trump Sends Stern Message to Belize on Human Trafficking Laws
Belize continues to be ranked as a tier three human trafficking nation by the US, and US President Donald Trump sent a powerful and angry message to the Barrow Administration today: no more non-humanitarian, non-trade-related assistance to Belize until it makes what the US deems to be significant efforts to comply with US Trafficking in Persons regulations. The decision is contained in a Memorandum for the Secretary of State from President Donald Trump.  It is dated today and is posted on the White House website.   The decision also targets 16 other countries, and the list includes only 3 countries in the America’s: Belize, Bolivia, and Venezuela. 

Prison CEO Gives his Side of the Story in Lawsuit Case
Earlier this week, we told you about the start of lawsuit that Orel Leslie has brought against the Belize Central Prison. He’s suing the prison authorities for alleged ill-treatment, which he says he was subjected to for several months while he was remand, awaiting his retrial for murder. As we told you, it’s the first case in Belize where a former inmate is suing the management of the country’s prison for inhumane treatment and a violation of his constitutional rights. Earlier in the week, he took the stand to give details of about this alleged ill-treatment.  Well today, it was Virgilio Murrillo, the Prison CEO, who took the stand as one of the main witnesses for the defense. In his evidence, he provided the court with the prison’s account of several incidents that Leslie has brought up as proof of this poor treatment.

Court Clerk Walks off Theft Charge
A 30 year old first class court clerk is free from a theft charge tonight. He is Sean Lord and he was accused of stealing $2,010 dollars from his workplace, the San Ignacio Magistrate’s Court. The money Lord allegedly stole was said to have been paid to the court by two immigrants convicted of illegal entry. They were ordered to pay their fines immediately. Lord was tried in Belmopan. But Senior Magistrate Merlene Moody upheld a submission from his attorney Richard “Dickie” Bradley who convinced her that the prosecution failed to prove the case. Richard “Dickie” Bradley, Attorney for Sean Lord: "There are two Government receipt books for which cashiers collect money. One day at the end of that day, that receipt book and all the monies collected are paid into the treasury department, which is done all over the country. When the treasury is using that book..."

Police Shoot Rowdy ‘Griga Resident to Subdue Him
Dangriga police had to shoot a man in leg to get him to simmer down. The incident happened on Tuesday night. Police told us more. ACP Joseph Myvett - Head, NCIB
"Dangriga police responded to a disturbance at a Chinese store where upon arrival one Nelson Jackson was observed behaving boisterously and as a result he was approached by officers in order to calm him down and remove him from the area but he kept on behaving in that fashion and at some point during his confrontation with the officers, he made a motion to go towards his pants waist with his right hand and as a result an officer took out his service firearm and fired one shot which caught him on his right upper leg. He is admitted at the Southern Regional hospital in a stable condition."

No Leads in 8 Miles Shooting Investigation
Police say they don’t know what to make of the back to back shootings at the couples 8 miles home. As we have reported, 48 year-old Vilma Robinson and 38 year-old Erick McLarly were asleep when a gunman or gunmen came to shoot up their house two nights in a row. Police say they have no leads in this case. Insp. Wilfredo Ferrufino - CIB Investigator: "We did receive information that there was another shooting the following day if I'm not mistaken in regard to 8 miles. No one has come forward to make an official report, police did look into the area however like I said, there was no one who made an official report, however police have stepped up their patrols in the area and that area will be looked at closely."

Maniac Husband Charged for Knocking Down Wife and Relatives
A man has been charged for knocking down his wife and her relatives in Belmopan. He is 32 year old Darrell Usher. He has been charged with  5 counts of attempted murder, 5 counts of use deadly means of harm, 5 counts of aggravated assault, 2 counts of grievous harm, 2 counts of harm and 1 count of wounding. He was arraigned before the court and was remanded until February 15th, 2019. As we reported on Tuesday, Darrell Usher and his common law wife Yessica Sagastume had a dispute. Sagastume left their Kiskadee Avenue home with relatives en route to her parents’ Maya Mopan house. That is when Usher came and rammed into them with his vehicle. Police told us more.

Protected Police Protect the Streets
And before we could get to all those police stories, the police held a short briefing about a special donation they got from their counterparts, The Miami-Dade police department. Commissioner of Police Allen Whylie told us about the 500 bullet proof vests they got. Allen Whylie - Commissioner of Police: "We have been the beneficiaries of a very large donation of exactly 500 bulletproof vests for the Belize police department which was donated to us by the Miami Dade police department through Chief Perez as well as through the initiative of the association of Caribbean commissioners of police and in particular the secretariat manager, Ms. Manning..."

Giving Cops a Break with Drugstore Deals and Discounts
And in more police news, in April, we showed you how Senior Superintendent Howell Gillett, the commander of Eastern Division Region 1 managed to convince UNO to give police officers a discount on fuel for police officers countrywide. He’s trying to incentivize them to step-up their performance in the service of the general public, well today, he signed a 1-year agreement with representatives of the Central Drug Store. This agreement includes 10% off general purchases, 10% off medications, $5 off all prescription refills costing less than $50, and $7.50 off all prescription refill purchases costing more than $50. Also, the cops get access to free delivery available to both the Queen Street and the Raccoon Street Police Stations. 

No Storm Scares for this Hurricane Season
Tomorrow, November 30th, marks the close of the 2018 Atlantic Basin Hurricane season, and thankfully, Belize was spared of hurricane activity.  The authorities say that the 2018 season was forecasted to have between normal, and slight above normal storm activity. For the most part, that forecast was fairly accurate with the above-normal activity taking place in North Atlantic.  There were a total of 15 named storms and 1 tropical depression. Of the 15 named storms, 8 became hurricanes, and 2 reached strengths of major hurricanes. The strongest storms this seasons were Hurricanes Florence with maximum sustained winds of 155 miles per hour, and Hurricane Michael, which had maximum sustained winds of 155 miles per hour.

Leiden Law Professors on Belize-Guatemala Dispute
The media’s visit to The Hague continued today with a visit to two experts in international law.  They are professors at Leiden University in the Netherlands - and spoke as academics and scholars who have no vested interest in the outcome.  They had some interesting perspectives on the Belize Case.  Jules Vasquez has the story: Leiden - where they are both professors - is one of the top universities in Europe and is over 500 years old.

ICJ Ruling Could Help with Sarstoon Confrontations
One other issue which we discussed with the Professors was their opinion on whether Guatemala had annexed the Sarstoon.  It’s been three years since the Guatemalan military has been behaving aggressively on the river that forms the southern boundary between the two countries.  And by aggressively we mean using the Belize sider of the river, and menacing - even detaining - Belizeans or the BDF when they traverse the Sarstoon. The professors wouldn’t call it annexation - per se - but said that it is a situation where going to the ICJ could help:…

It’s all about the Environment: Joint Commission Meet at OAS Office
So while the Belizean media is on an intense ICJ crash course in The Hague, here in Belize, discussions on other matters related to Belize and Guatemala were held. Yesterday top diplomats met at the O.A.S. office in the adjacency zone. This was for the fourth regular meeting of the Joint Commission on Belize-Guatemala. They discussed environmental issues; specifically, implementing the bilateral agreement on protection of the environment and sustainable use of resources signed almost four years ago. With help from each country’s top technical and official representatives, they hammered out plans to combat forest fires; explore the possibility of a bi-national technical mechanism for the monitoring of water quality...

Cayo Gets Fancy Multipurpose Center
San Ignacio Town is getting a $1.6 million dollar multi-purpose community center. This is through a partnership between the Governments of Italy and Belize and the Caribbean Community Climate Change Center. It will be designed to incorporate renewable energy in order to stay in operation during a hurricane or other disasters. It also incorporates an independently powered hybrid grid-connected PV renewable energy system; a rainwater storage system; and an emergency communication system. Groundbreaking took place on Wednesday in the Twin Towns, where 5C’s executive director Dr. Kenrick Leslie spoke of the genesis of the project. We also hear from area representative and environment minister Dr. Omar Figueroa on the benefits to Cayo residents.

Keeping Auditors Accountable
The Office of the Auditor General, are the arbiters of government service and in recent years their reports have drawn much scrutiny and occasionally controversy. As part of its plans to strengthen effective communication between staff as well as outwardly to the public, a three-day training on effective communication and report writing was held in Belmopan, facilitated by communications expert, Ms. Sarah MacFayden of the Canadian Audit and Accountability Foundation. We hear from the trainer as well as senior staff of the office on what they learned.

Workshop to Tackle Child Labour
For the last 4 days, officials from several government agencies in Belize have been attending a workshop training on child labour. The Government wants to ensure that the relevant public officers are better able to detect child labour in the workplace, and so, the Ministry of Labour sought the assistance of the United States Department of Labour. American officials designed the workshop to prepare the Belizean officials to be able to train their colleagues in the curriculum from the US Department of Labour. At the closing ceremony, we asked the Labour CEO to share more details on the initiative, and how it helps the participants to be better at their jobs:

House Speaker in West Africa for High Level Meeting
Right now, House Speaker Laura Tucker Longsworth is in Cotonou, Benin, where she is attending the 52nd Session of  African Caribbean and Pacific Group of States’ Parliamentary Assembly, and the 36th Session of the ACP-EU Joint Parliamentary Assembly.  These events started yesterday, and continues until December 5th. As part her trip, House Speaker Tucker attended the meeting of the ACP Committee on Social Affairs and the Environment, which was held today.

Re: Today's Belize News: November 30, 2018 [Re: Marty] #533526
11/30/18 06:59 AM
11/30/18 06:59 AM
Joined: Oct 1999
Posts: 65,154
oregon, spr
Marty Offline OP

Marty  Offline OP

Channel 5

Pomona Man Charged for the Murder of Marta Gonzalez
Pomona resident, twenty-one-year-old Christopher Albert Bradley was charged on Wednesday for the murder of sixty-eight-year-old Marta Gonzalez. Bradley is accused of fatally stabbing Gonzalez on the chest and dumping her [...]

Dangriga Police Shoots ‘Boisterous’ Man
Dangriga resident, Nelson Jackson is tonight recuperating from a gunshot wound he received on the right leg. Jackson was shot by a police officer on Tuesday. At this morning’s press [...]

Eyewitness Say Jackson was not Boisterous
While that is the official police version of events, an eyewitness told News Five that Nelson Jackson was not being boisterous. Elizabeth Williams was nearby when the incident occurred. She [...]

B.D.F. Private Fidel Williams Taken to Merida (by Bus?)
There is an update tonight on the health of B.D.F. private Fidel Williams. While on duty, Williams fell from the deteriorating pier at the Sarstoon Forward Operating Base on November [...]

PC Steven Ferguson Laid to Rest by Police Department
PC Steven Ferguson was today laid to rest by the Belize Police Department in his home village of Hattieville. Ferguson died on November twenty-first in a house he was renting [...]

No Identity for Body Found, Croc(s) Ate Face and Limbs
Investigators are still unable to identify the body of a middle-aged, Hispanic man which was found on Wednesday in the Orange Walk District. The body was fished out of the [...]

Testimonies in Orel Leslie’s Prison Lawsuit Conclude Before High Court
Arguments concluded today in the courtroom of Justice Courtney Abel who is hearing the case brought against the management of the central prison, Kolbe Foundation, by a former inmate, Orel [...]

The U.S. Cuts Aid to Belize Due to Lack of Progress on Human Trafficking
The U.S. government has determined it will be withholding aid to Belize for various programmes. Earlier today, the State Department announced that President Donald Trump had signed off a decree [...]

Law Experts on Fair Trial at The Hague
Today in The Hague, the Belize media had the opportunity to sit down with two law experts in International dispute resolution from Leiden University in the Netherlands to weigh in [...]

Law Experts on Guatemalan Military in the Sarstoon
The media took the opportunity to discuss the ongoing challenges with the Guatemalan Armed Forces in the Sarstoon with the legal experts from Leiden University. Ambassador Dylan Vernon explained on [...]

What’s with the Wording of the Special Agreement between Belize and Guatemala?
Another hot-button issue that the media has been pressing for answers while at The Hague is the specific wording of the Special Agreement between Belize and Guatemala. The court would [...]

Sagicor Life Responds to Choice Bank Pension Holders
On Tuesday, two former employees of Choice Bank Limited vented their frustration at Sagicor Life over their pension plan monies. Former Chief Operating Officer, Brian Stypul and former Chief Compliance [...]

Transparent B.P.O. Bus Bursts Into Flames
A Transparent B.P.O. bus burst into flames this morning.  The incident happened between miles eight and nine on the Philip Goldson Highway at around six-fifty-five. Ladyville police and firefighters responded, [...]

5 Persons Ran Over by Enraged Man
Five persons are at the Western Regional Hospital receiving treatment after they were allegedly run over by an enraged common-law-husband. Thirty-two-year-old Darrell Alexander Usher was slapped with a number of [...]

B.P.D. Receives 500 Bulletproof Vests
Earlier this month, police officer Osbourne Martinez was fatally shot while responding to a robbery in progress at Belcove Hotel in downtown Belize City. Following his death, many questioned the [...]

IV Meeting of the Bze-Guat Joint Commission
The fourth meeting of the Guatemala-Belize Joint Commission was held on Wednesday at the Office of the Organization of American States in the Adjacency Zone. The meeting was to discuss the [...]

HelpAge International Concludes Sub-Regional Conference
A sub-regional conference of HelpAge International concluded today at the Ramada Princess in Belize City.  Six countries in region examined a convention that was signed in 2015 under the Organization [...]

Communication Training for Auditor General’s Staff
The Auditor General’s office wants to make its reports more user-friendly. Simply put, it is so that the lay man and woman can easily understand and use the documents. So, [...]

Labour Inspectors do 4-Day Train the Trainers Child Labour Law Course
The Ministry of Labour has been partnering with the U.S. Department of Labour to strengthen systems to address child labour.  As a part of the works being done, a curriculum for [...]

Resource and Resiliency Centre to be Constructed in San Ignacio
The C.C.C.C.C., headquartered in Belmopan deals with the environmental concerns of the entire Caribbean. On Wednesday, in San Ignacio, ground was broken for the construction of a resource and resiliency [...]

The Final Leg for Miss Universe Belize, Jenelli Fraser
Miss Universe Belize, Jenelli Fraser, is currently in Taiwan en route to Bangkok, Thailand for the international pageant to be held on December sixteenth. Fraser has gone through extensive training [...]

Artlchemist Exhibition Launches at the Mexican Institute
At this time at the Mexican Institute in Belize City, an exhibition is officially opening. This exhibit will showcase a wide collection of artwork from a pool of seven artists [...]


Auditors participated in communications training
A three-day training was held for employees of the Auditor General Office, where they learned communication skills. The International Development Bank, IDB, believed that such a training could help strengthen the public financial management and was happy to facilitate the training. Dorothy Bradley, Auditor General told the media that the training will help to build …

Cayo North holds ground breaking for Resource Center
On Wednesday residents in Cayo saw the groundbreaking for the Cayo North Resource and Resiliency Center. The project has been in the works for some time now and is now being fully funded by the Government of Italy. Cayo North Area Representative, Omar Figueroa explained the significance of the project. Omar Figueroa: “It’s a gift …

Police Department receives 500 bullet proof vests
The Belize Police department has received five hundred bullet proof vests as a donation from the Miami Dade Police Department. The donation was made possible through the Association of Caribbean Commissioners of Police (ACCP).Commissioner of Police, Allen Whylie is a second Vice President of the ACCP. Commissioner Whylie said that the ACCP has a working …

Another shooting at Mile 8 Community
There was a second shooting at the Mile 8 community along the George Prince Highway. Earlier this week we told you of a shooting incident in which 48-year-old Vilma Robinson and 38-year-old Erick McLarly were shot while they slept in their home. Someone crept up behind the house and fired several shots that entered one …

Senators agree to settle payment to Glenn Godfrey
The Senate met on Wednesday and looked at five bills brought from the House of Representatives. Among them is the settlement with Glenn Godfrey. This pertains to a Master Lease Agreement over equipment leased by the failed enterprise International Telecommunications Limited (Intelco) to the then Musa administration. The story goes back to December 2002 when …

Martha Gonzalez killed in robbery; Police charge one man
Martha Gonzalez was killed in what appears to be a robbery. That is what police told the media today. The 68-year-old woman was found dead inside a pit latrine in Pomona Village on Monday. Gonzalez, who is from San Felipe Village in the Orange Walk District, had gone to Pomona to sell cheese and other …

Diversification is key in keeping fisheries sector sustainable
The fisheries sector is essential to the economy of Belize and the challenge is to keep the sector sustainable while continuing to put meals on the table of families and generate income for those who make their livelihood from the industry. In this regard, a pilot project entitled “Supporting developing countries in analyzing and implementing …

Police shoots one man in Dangriga
A Dangriga Police officer is being investigated after he shot a man on Tuesday night. ACP Joseph Myvett said the incident happened after police were called to handle a report of a disturbance at a store in that municipality. ACP Joseph Myvette: “One Nelson Jackson was observed behaving boisterously and as a result he was …

Identity of man pulled out of New River remains a mystery
Orange Walk police are investigating the circumstances surrounding the death of a man who is yet to be identified. His body was taken out of the New River on Wednesday afternoon. ACP Joseph Myvette, Head of the National Crimes Investigation Branch says the Hispanic male was missing some limbs. ACP Joseph Myvett, Head of the …

Bus catches fire on the Highway
This morning as commuters made their way towards Belize City, a large plume of smoke was visible on the Northern Highway. A bus filled almost to capacity with employees of Transparent BPO was heading down the highway when it combusted before it reached the Philip Goldson Airport Junction. The driver of the bus, Branson Rhaburn …

Ministries collaborate for the welfare of children
The Early Childhood Development National Strategic Plan was launched in 2017, to ensure that investment in a child’s life from early is established in order for that child to go on to achieve lifetime success. The government departments which are tasked to execute this are the Ministry of Education, the Ministry of Health and the Ministry of Human Development and key to establishing this is being interconnected.

Intergovernmental Committee for the Safeguarding of the Intangible Cultural Heritage
The thirteenth session of the Intergovernmental Committee for the Safeguarding of the Intangible Cultural Heritage is taking place in Port Louis, Republic of Mauritius, since Monday at the Swami Vivekananda International Convention Centre (SVICC). The meeting is being chaired by the Honourable Prithvirajsing Roopun, Minister of Arts and Culture of the Republic of Mauritius.

Jamaica’s Reggae added to UNESCO Cultural Heritage List
Today, Reggae has been added to the list of global cultural treasures by UNESCO, the United Nation’s cultural and scientific agency. The sound, which reached international acclaim thanks to artists like Bob Marley, Bonnie Wailer and Peter Tosh who gave voice to the oppressed in Jamaica.

Police Department bury PC Steven Ferguson
The Belize Police Department took care of funeral arrangements for Police Constable Steven Anthony Ferguson, who was buried today. He is the officer who is believed to have killed his common-law-wife Josephine Hamilton and turned the gun on himself.

Guatemala-Belize Joint Commission
The Fourth meeting of the Guatemala-Belize Joint Commission was held on Wednesday, November 28th in the Office of the Organization of American States (OAS) in the Adjacency Zone. The meeting was headed by the Commissioners of both countries, the Ambassador of Belize in Guatemala, Alexis Rosado and the Ambassador of Guatemala in Belize, Georges de La Roche.

Darrell Usher faces 20 charges for running over his common-law wife and four others
Police have levied up to twenty charges against Darrell Alexander Usher for running over his common-law wife and four other persons including two minors. The 32-year-old was arrested and charged today with five counts attempted murder, five counts of use deadly mean of harm, five counts of aggravated assault, two counts of grievous harm, two counts of harm and one count of wounding.

BDF Private heading to Merida for Medical Treatment following Accident
Belize Defense Force (BDF) soldier Private Fidel Williams was stationed at the Sarstoon Forward Operating Base when he was injured on the 14th of November, 2018. Private Williams was walking on the pier when his foot hit a deteriorated plank that caused him to fall.

The Reporter

Today Darrell Alexander Usher, 32, was formally charged for 5 counts of attempted murder, 5 counts of use of deadly means of harm, 5 counts of aggravated assault, 2 counts of grievous harm, 2 counts of harm and 1 count of wounding.

The Reporter has confirmed that the bus which caught fire in Ladyville a short while ago is owned by Transparent BPO and transports workers from Orange Walk to Belize City. It is not known at this time what started the fire, but the bus was totally destroyed by the flames. We are told nobody was hurt.

Breaking Belize NewsPJ

Atlantic Hurricane season closes
Tomorrow, November 30, marks the closing of the 2018 Atlantic Basin Hurricane Season. The 2018 Atlantic […]

House speaker attends Session of ACP Parliamentary assembly
The Speaker of the House of Representatives, Laura Tucker Longsworth is in Cotonou, Benin, attending the 52nd Session […]

Miami-Dade police donate 500 bullet proof vests to Belize Police Department
Today, the Belize Police Department received a generous donation from the Miami-Dade Police Department. The Miami-Dade […]

Belize extends solidarity to Palestine
The Government of Belize today joins in the observance of the International Day of Solidarity with […]

European Union approves $7 million Euros for Belize- Guatemala projects
The European Union (EU) has approved $7 million Euros for Belize- Guatemala related projects. The money […]

Expert on international dispute settlements weighs in on Belize’s referendum
Belizean journalists today visited Leiden University, Grotius Centre for International Legal Studies at The Hague, Netherlands […]

International law experts share details on dispute settlements
Belizean journalists today visited Leiden University, Grotius Centre for International Legal Studies at The Hague, Netherlands […]

International law experts speak on Belize-Guatemala dispute
Belizeans will decide on April 10, 2019, if we want to take the case of Guatemala’s […]

Concerns of question Belizeans will answer in April
Belizeans have expressed concern about the formulation of the question that Belizeans will answer to on […]

Belizean youths awarded for outstanding achievements
The Department of Youth Services (DYS), Ministry of Education, Youth, Sports & Culture ended its National Youth […]

Passenger bus bursts into flames on the Philip Goldson Highway
This morning a passenger bus exploded into flames on the Philip Goldson Highway. According to reports, the bus is owned by Transparent BPO which transports employees from Orange Walk to Belize City.


Cold front approached in Corozal on Tuesday
Temperatures in Belize vary by only about 4°C between the coolest part of the year (December to March) and the hottest (May to September). Nobody wants to get out of bed during a cold front, especially as cold as it is right now!! Belize's temperature hardly drops into the 60's so it's COLD right now. Each place in Belize varies. And, each cold front varies when approaching Belize. Today, I will be blogging about how the cold front approached in Corozal earlier this week. This past Tuesday, a cold front came in our way in Belize. And, countrywide it was affected differently. Like down south, flooding happened in the mountains, because of too much rain. This was the weather update for this week before the cold front entered our way: "A cold front in the Gulf of Mexico will stall over North Belize Today Tuesday throw the Evening. Before weakening and drifting back North through Friday. Weather is forecast to be unsettled for the next 4 days. So temps in North will be slightly cooler than South.

Ya’axché works with livestock farmers to implement unique mitigation measures that help protect jaguars and keep cows. As night approaches, Agnis Ujan nervously watches the spectacular sunset over the Maya Mountains west of Big Falls village, southern Belize. Fireflies soon fill the starless night. A chill wind blows from the Caribbean Sea in the east, as her husband Henry prepares for a long night ahead guarding his cattle. A pregnant female might give birth to a calf tonight, and Agnis knows very well that if the calf is not guarded, jaguars could snatch the warmth from the farm like the cold winds of the night. “If you see that jaguar, fire that shot Henry!” Agnis shouts with emotion as her husband warms up his motorbike. Farmers in surrounding communities often kill jaguars in retaliation for killing their livestock. Henry has never seen a jaguar on his farm, but the tracks are evident. He wonders whether he can bear guarding his cattle in the pitch dark as he arrives at his farm. A loud thud startles Henry; he goes to inspect the noise. A cow has fallen, and Henry witnesses the birth of a young bull.

International Sourcesizz

Best Trips 2019
Belize’s growing popularity as one of the best vacation destinations in the world and the recent efforts to protect Belize’s Barrier Reef System has won the country an important accolade from National Geographic, which has placed Belize among is Best Trips 2019 list.

Reggae music to be protected by UN after being declared global cultural treasure
UNESCO has declared reggae, the Jamaican music that spread across the world with its calls for social justice, peace and love, to be a global treasure that must be safeguarded. Born in the poor neighbourhoods of Kingston in the 1960s, reggae reflected hard times and struggle but could also be joyous dance music with its distinctive off-beat. Its most famous songwriter and performer, the late Bob Marley, became a global superstar with hits like “No Woman, No Cry” and “Get Up, Stand Up”. Other notables include Jimmy Cliff and Toots and the Maytalls.

Belize starts high-level 5-day visit to Australia’s Great Barrier Reef in effort to bolster expertise in World Heritage Conservation
From 26 to 30 November 2018, a high-level delegation from Belize is visiting Australia’s Great Barrier Reef to exchange best practices on leveraging their reef’s iconic World Heritage status, to protect their fragile ecosystems from climate impacts and secure sustainable livelihoods, jobs and income for local communities. The visit follows a series of landmark conservation actions that led to the removal of the Belize Barrier Reef Reserve System from the List of World Heritage in Danger earlier this year. As the world’s most extensive coral reef ecosystem, the Great Barrier Reef is a globally outstanding and significant entity. It was inscribed on the World Heritage List in 1981 and covers an area larger than Italy. The Belize Barrier Reef Reserve System is one of the most pristine reef ecosystems in the Western Hemisphere and was referred to as ‘the most remarkable reef in the West Indies’ by Charles Darwin. It was inscribed on the UNESCO World Heritage List in 1996.

The Great Blue Hole: Unknown life forms to stories of Mayans, explorers aim to uncover many secrets from thousands of years ago
The Great Blue Hole — a giant marine sinkhole off the coast of Belize — may be holding secrets dating back thousands of years, from life forms unknown to mankind to undocumented stories of Mayan sea-farers, according to a renowned deep sea explorer and conservationist. One of the most famous diving zones in central America, the Great Blue Hole is thought to have been shaped by geological forces over 10,000 years ago. Located 74 kilometres off the coast of Belize, the sinkhole is known for its crystal-clear water and its abundance of sharks and sea life. The nearly perfect sphere of deep blue water, measuring 300 metres across and 125 metres deep, has only been explored once — back in 1970 by Jacques Cousteau, a pioneering marine conservationist who studied the sea and all forms of life in water. His grandson Fabien Cousteau now prepares to journey to the same spot in a fully-manned submersible, unveiling the deepest secrets of the watery underworld live for viewers across the globe.

Scotiabank to exit nine countries in Caribbean shake-up
The Bank of Nova Scotia said Tuesday that it has struck a deal to sell banking businesses in nine of the smaller countries in the Caribbean, such as Antigua and Dominica, as the lender continues to narrow down the number of international markets in which it operates. The move comes as Scotiabank, which has said larger markets in Latin America are still very much part of its plans, reported that adjusted profit from its international banking unit grew at a greater rate than that of its Canadian business over the past year.


  • Downwind Sailing Techniques | Sailing to Placencia Belize | Asymmetrical Spinnaker Sailing, 17min. While Sailing to Placencia Belize we explain our downwind sailing techniques and talk about asymmetrical spinnaker sailing! It was hard to say goodbye to air conditioned bathrooms and hot water showers, but once underway for Placencia we were rewarded with perfect sailing conditions, giving us time to reflect on our journey thus far as well as discuss many of our downwind sailing equipment choices and techniques.

  • ICJ meeting in San Pedro Thursday night, 2hr.

  • Cave Kayaking in the Belize Jungle – A Comedy of Errors = A Great Adventure (includes bloopers), 10min. So many little things went wrong this day: the radiator busted on one of the trucks, the same truck got stuck in mud and needed to be hauled out, it rained right in the middle of the day, and for some strange reason, I just could not get my coordination together during the first half of the kayaking day. (I've included a blooper section of my laughable frustrations for your viewing pleasure.) Enjoy! Despite all the mini fails (or perhaps BECAUSE) of them, it ended up being one of my favorite adventures during my 13 days in Belize. This cave kayaking trip with Maya Guide Adventures offers a little bit of everything: 4x4 drive, peaceful river kayaking in the jungle, eerie cave kayaking in the dark, a tiny caving side trip, and lunch - all while supporting a local mom & pop operation.

  • Belize Diving 2018,4 min. Spent a week in Belize at Saint George's Caye Resort.

  • Bus get burnt!!!, 4min. What how the fire fighters wait till the bus is completely covered in flames to try put it out!

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