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Today's Belize News: January 29, 2020 #540291
01/29/20 06:41 AM
01/29/20 06:41 AM
Joined: Oct 1999
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FOR TODAY'S BELIZE WEATHER, CLICK HERE

Click for our Daily Tropical Weather Report.

Specials and Events

Last night's TV news on Channel 7, Channel 5, LOVETV, PGTV, Reef TV, KREM, and CTV 3. Also with the most recent Open Your Eyes, Belize Now, Talk Ah Di Town, and other specials.


The San Pedro Sun

Gabriela Varela representing Belize at the Reina Hispanoamericana Pagean
The BEAUTIFUL Gabriela Varela is currently in Bolivia as she prepares to represent Belize at the Reina Hispanoamericana Pageant. The beauty pageant is set to take place on February 8, 2020 at the Salon Siriono Fexpocruz in Santa Cruz, Bolivia. Gabriela has been making her mark during the preparations, and has been sharing photos of her experience.

Anabel Kumul sentenced for Felix Alamilla’s murder
After being behind bars for almost six years in the murder of her common-law partner Felix Eduardo Alamilla, 42-year-old Mexican National Anabel Matilde Bacelis Kumul was sentenced to 15 years’ inprisonment on Tuesday, January 28th in Belize City. Kumul, who pleaded guilty to the lesser charge of manslaughter, appeared before Justice Colin Williams, who stipulated that due to her guilty plea, Kumul was entitled to a reduction of a third of her sentence. Instead of serving 15 years, her remaining time in prison will now be only four years and six months.

The Ministry of Education Notes the Wide Circulation of Misleading Information Presented to Teachers in Order for Them to Make a Decision
The Ministry requested and held meetings with stakeholders, including the Belize National Teachers’ Union (BNTU), and shared its intention to address the three pressing issues coming from the BNTU and Managing Authorities. The intentions shared in the called meeting with the BNTU on December 12, 2019, are as follows: 1. Adjusting the education rules that will empower the Chief Education Officer to change the vacation period...

Ambergris Today

Chef Jennie Staines Wins Estel's BBQ Competition
Congratulations to Chef Jennie Staines of Elvi's Kitchen as she takes first place at the 9th Annual Estel's BBQ Cookoff! Rounding up the top three of eight grill masters were Toshiya Tsujimoto and Jim Gochenour.

Tsunami Alerts Triggered After 7.7 Earthquake Off Jamaica Coast
The Government of Jamaica has issued a TSUNAMI WARNING for the coastal areas of the country. A powerful earthquake struck the Caribbean on Tuesday afternoon, shaking parts of Jamaica and Cuba shortly after 2 p.m. local time. The earthquake was originally rated a 7.3 by the USGS, but was later upgraded to a 7.7. The epicenter of the earthquake was 78 miles (125 km) northwest of Lucea, Jamaica, and was shallow with a depth of just 6.2 miles (10 km). Shaking was felt as far away as Miami, Florida, and reports began surfacing on social media that high-rise buildings were felt swaying.

Various Belizean Sources

mzz

Jerome Quan passes away
It is with great sadness and regret that we join hearts and hands with our Corozal community in extending our deepest and sincere sympathies to Mr. Richard Quan and his wife Mrs. Consuelo Rose Quan in the untimely passing of their son, Jerome Quan.

The renovated Goverment House
This is a loaded photo of the Government House Property. I say loaded because you will be able to see the following six things: 1) The renovated Goverment House of course. 2) The new NICH office is on the left. It was previously the Governor's Carriage House. That was his garage in other words. The second floor was the maid's quarter's. 3) The Baron Bliss's ferry boat known as the "Sea King". 4) A restored wooded water vat where drinking water was stored 9in the middel of the photo). 5) The new Hoouse of Culture on the right. 6) New largre parking lot.

THE ORIGINS OF THE TREASURY DEPARTMENT
The Belize City House of Culture and Downtown Rejuvenation Project is hoping to do some much needed repair work on the roof of the Treasury building in the coming months. Here is a quick history lesson about the first Treasury. …."Prior to the year 1829, the annually elected magistrates had the unlimited control of the expenditure of public money, they being accountable to the public meeting alone, that legislative body voting all sums for the expenditures. In 1829, however, Colonel M’Donald, the then Superintendent of the settlement, asked the meeting to curtail these powers, alleging against the magistrates as his reason for so doing the charge of extravagant dealings with the public money entrusted to their care...

2nd Annual Carnaval Parade in San Pedro
Sign up now for the 2nd Annual Carnaval Parade on Saturday, February 22, 2020! We invite any group or business to join in un the fun! Sign up at the San Pedro Town Council. Joining us at the Parade will be DJ Debbie and the Titans Mas Band! We will have beads and carnaval masks to give away! The parade will start from San Pedro High School and end at the Central Park at the Carnaval Fiesta block party!

Paint N Splash
See you this week at from 2-4pm Thursday to paint “Fairy Bass”.

ALL CLEAR ISSUED FOR TSUNAMI WATCH
The National Meteorological Services of Belize and the National Emergency Management Organization (NEMO) had to quickly issue verbal and WhatsApp/Facebook circulated alerts to advise the general public that an earthquake occurred off the coast of Cuba. The USGS later upgraded the earthquake off the coast of Cuba to a magnitude 7.7 earthquake. If a tsunami was generated the expected arrival times in local time were as follows: Kingston, Jamaica, 3:24 PM ET Cozumel, Mexico, 3:34 PM ET Puerto Cortes, Honduras, 3:38 PM ET Belize City, Belize, 4:48 PM ET Santa Cruz Del Sur, Cuba, 5:16 PM ET Nueva Gerona, Cuba, 6:45 PM ET.

Cayo AGM Mixer 2020
Join us for our 2020 AGM this Friday, January 31st at the Cahal Pech Village Resort, San Ignacio Belize Conference room at 5:30pm. We want you to get involved in our goal in making Cayo a Green Destination in Belize. Come and chat with us to see what we have planned and also bring your contributions to the table to achieve this goal for 2020 and beyond. All are welcome to join. See you there!

Corozal gets loan from Japan
Great News! "Mayor Rigo Vellos and the Corozal Town Council have made great strides as today was the official Grant Contract Signing Ceremony between the Corozal Town Council and the Embassy of Japan in Belize for one hundred and ninety nine thousand US dollars. The fund is being granted by the Embassy for the purchase of a compactor truck and a open back truck. This will truly be of great benefit to our municipality. Your Corozal Town Council is working to strengthen partnership for the benefit of our Corozalenos. Meeting and completing one more of our commitments to the people of Corozal".

The Macal River Park fence is looking good, and almost complete
They are almost finished with the new fence around Macal River park. Looks good.

San Ignacio Rotary Club has started another bathroom block
Work has started on the 15th toilet building our club has build at schools in Cayo. The funding cones from two Rotary clubs in Alaska and funds from the Rotary Foundation. The toilet block design, as it is called here, meets United Nations standards and provides for student population growth out several years. The project includes general hygiene education for the students. This school is in the Village of Billy White. Thank you, partner clubs and Rotary!

Cayo Twist has opened rheir new branch at the CAYO Welcome Center
Great non-dairy ice cream

Look at how clean the area by the San Ignacio market is!
The drain area around the market is looking clean! Thank you, SISE Town Council.

Chiquibul Challenge Marathon 2020
Mar 14 at 10 AM – Mar 15 at 1 PM, pin Las Cuevas Research Station. The Chiquibul Challenge Marathon (CCM) is an annual fundraiser event supporting the wildlife and conservation work by Belize Wildlife & Referral Clinic (BWRC) and Friends for Conservation and Development (FCD). Held at Las Cuevas Research Station (LCRS) in the Chiquibul Forest Reserve, one of the world's most pristine and biodiverse locations. Run or walk and half or full marathon over logging roads in undulating terrain within the Chiquibul Forest Reserve. Breathtaking scenery combined with a friendly atmosphere makes this event magical. Expect humid, warm conditions. The event commences with a pre-race gathering Sat. the 14th of March at Hode's Place in San Ignacio. The race itself is held at Las Cuevas Research Station on Sunday the 15th. Registration includes transportation from Hode's Place to LCRS, camping and meals at LCRS, race entrance, and event swag. We have prizes for all categories! This event requires pre-registration and all attendees must be pre-registered with the event organizers. Email [email protected] for more info.

The Mayan cross and the Mayan being
A good reading to know more of those Yucatec Maya (Máasewal) who follow the Cruzo'ob Maya faith. What is the difference between the Mayan cross and the one brought by the Spaniards? In Principle, its origins go back to the beginnings of Mayan culture, although currently many confuse it with the cross brought by the Spaniards. The Mayan cross represents the deities of a space related to the cornfield. In such a way that in each of the four cardinal points of the XU ' UK-markings of the cornfield-the grandparents tell us that there moran the Gods, and therefore they are often honored with the sakaj-the sacred drink-to be Benevolent in the activities that are performed in the place.

Perix P'aak - Belizean Máasewal food
A favorite between the Yucatec Maya (Máasewal) of Belize . This food is known in Belize as Perix P'aak . Is also known as p'irixbi je' . 3 Pictures showing the process of creating the Perix P'aak.

Channel 7

Stabbed Hubby To Death, Pleads To Manslaughter
She was accused of killing her common law husband, and 42 year old Mexican Annabell Kumul pleaded guilty to manslaughter today.  In a confession, Kumul told police that she stabbed 28 year old Felix Alamailla because he had gone on a drinking spree. Kumul, who is a Mexican had just returned from Chetumal to find him at a friend's house, sleeping on the couch.  She said she got so angry that she immediately stabbed him three times - but didn't think it would be fatal.  Ultimately, the stab to the thigh is what caused him to bleed out and die.  

Kareem Tells Dean and AG Invoke Mutual Legal Assistance
The trial of Lev Dermen continued in Salt Lake City Utah today - but, nothing of consequence happened, as jury selection continued.   It continues again tomorrow, followed in the afternoon by opening arguments.  Then on Thursday, the court will hear testimony from Federal Agents.  There's no court in Utah on Friday, so current projections are that Jacob Kingston - a key witness who turned on Dermen - will not take the stand until next week.   Kingston is the one who exchanged text messages with National Security Minister John Saldivar on behalf of Dermen.  And, everyone in Belize wants to know what was in those text messages - which we're hoping will come out in evidence.  We're also keeping a close eye out for court documents which show that Kingston wired money to a high ranking official in Belize.

Keep Calm, No Coronavirus in Belize
There was a Coronavirus scare on Caye Caulker last night which gained social media momentum early this morning.  But tonight we can tell you that the particularly dangerous strain of the Coronavirus that's all over the world news has not been detected in Belize.  What happened in Caye Caulker last night was hype and confusion surrounding a Chinese tourist who had been screened upon leaving China, and again when entering the U.S.A at LAX before being cleared for travel to Belize, where he has been treated very badly.  In an effort to allay public fears, the Director of Health Services, Dr Marvin Manzanero spoke to PLUS TV today in Belmopan where he outlined the facts of what is being done to protect Belizeans from the virus:

Ernesto's Friend Says He Was Ambushed
Last night we brought you the story of the chilling murder of club owner Ernesto Williams which occurred on Friday night at the corner of Orange Street and Taylor's Alley. And tonight we can give you an insight into the events that preceded Willam's death. Roderick Wade may have been the last person to see Willams alive. He spoke to us today and told us that while rumours abound, Ernesto Williams was indeed executed in an ambush.  Roderick Wade - Friend of the Deceased: "Most nights when we hang out he normally has his licensed gun on him, right. But that night I went to the clothing store and he was like let's go to this house we'll go..."

12 Years for Child Molesting Former Cop
A former police constable who was found guilty of the sexual assault of a minor was sentenced today.  24 year old Darren Martinez will spend 12 years in jail for inserting his finger in the private part of an 8 year old girl.   At the time in February of 2016, Martinez, was dating the child's older sister. On December 17, 2019, a jury of 9 unanimously found him guilty.   Before he decided on the sentence, Justice Colin Williams heard pleas for mitigation from 5 character witnesses, Martinez himself and his attorney, Oswald Twist. 

Chief Educ. Officer Wants Consultation Not Confrontation With BNTU
As you heard on the news last night, tensions are high between the Belize National Teachers Union and the Ministry of Education.   There are a number of technical issues causing friction between the parties, but right at the top of the list is adjusting the education rules to change the vacation period.   Right now, the issue is that because Christmas fell on a Wednesday, by rule, the school Christmas holiday should have only been two weeks long. But, the teachers rejected that, and the Minister capitulated - allowing the usual three weeks.

A LEAP Forward For Illiterate Adults
We met the Chief Education Officer today at Unity Presbyterian Primary for the launch of the Ministry's first adult literacy program.  It's called LEAP, which is short for Literacy And Empowerment Adult Program.   Babb told us who it targets: Dr. Carol Babb - Chief Education Officer: "Any parent who is interested in reading and write or to improve their literacy skills, they are welcomed to attend. They can get forms from the schools here from ITVET or from the Collet office. So, we are going to teach them functional literacy. Functional literacy means learning how to fill out forms, how to fill out a passport form, how to read their children's report card, we are going to determine what their needs are and when we determine those needs, we of course will teach phonics and the other concepts of literacy."

Kareem Says Shyne's People Settled
Last week, UDP politician Shyne Barrow denied that he was a part of any settlement with Troy Flowers, who is the popular DJ Dalla.   As we reported, Dalla - who is a cornerstone of the UDP's Wave Radio -  had retained Kareem Musa as his attorney to sue Shyne for tens of thsoaunds of dollars.  DJ Dalla said Shyne owes him that for a thirty thsoaund dollar beverage consignment and professional services he rendered during music week.   And while Shyne says there is no settlement, today Kareem Musa told us that he's very certain that there will be one:

Mom Wants Missing Girl Home
18 year old Reanna Renae Willoughby hasn't been home since last week Friday, and, tonight, her mother is begging for her to come back.   Jannine Harvey says her daughter - who is in third form at Maud Williams returned from school Friday, and hasn't been seen since.

And What Do the Youths Have To Say?
Last night, we told you about the Spouses of Caricom Leaders Action Network meeting in Belize in partnership with the Office of the Special Envoy for Women and Children.  They hosted a forum for Adolescents and Youth - and day 2 was set aside to hear from the youths on key topics such as HIV AIDS, Adolescent Pregnancy, Gender-Based Violence, Cervical Cancer, Mental Health and Climate Change. Cherisse Halsall attended and spoke to the panelists about the issues they brought to the forum's forefront.

Gender Picking Up Steam
And from liberal attitudes to sexual education, to a progressive gender program for schools.  Yesterday the Prime Minister signed a 20 Million dollar loan agreement with the IDB for the second phase of the Education Quality Improvement Program, The project is to build a STEAM Lab School in Belize. We were curious as to what extent gender equity is meant to be understood within EQUIP II. And today when we caught up with Chief Education Officer Dr Carol Babb, Jules Vasquez put the question to her: Jules Vasquez: "Could we ask you about Equip II the agreement was signed yesterday with the Prime Minister signing with the IDB..."

Carjacking Near Xunantunich
A man was carjacked on the Santa Rosa Road near Xunantunich this morning. It happened at about 9:00 am. 43-year-old Elias Sanchez Guttierrez had gone about half-mile from a police checkpoint when he found his path blocked by rocks.  That's when three masked men emerged from the bushes. Sanchez attempted to reverse but his vehicle got stuck in nearby bushes. That allowed the men to open fire on the vehicle, forcing Sanchez to jump out of the black pickup and run for his life. A cellphone and other items left inside were stolen along with the vehicle.

BEL Promises Rate Stability Till The End of 2020
BEL has submitted what is known as a Full Tariff Review Proceeding to the PUC.  Basically, it's a forecast of how much the company will be spending to purchase power, and what kind of electricity rate it will need to charge you to sustain operations and get a fair return on investment.   Now, with the cost of power from Mexico, and the cost of fuel both projected to increase, these are both driving up the cost of power.  Still, BEL says it hopes to keep your electricity rate constant, at least up until the end of 2020 - while investing in a reliable and resilient power grid:

Channel 5

Kareem Musa to PM Barrow: Invoke Mutual Legal Assistance in Criminal Matters Act!
As the trial of American Armenian national Lev Dermen enters its second day in the U.S. courts, in Belize, the matter is getting plenty attention because of its implications to [...]

P.U.P. Wants Criminal Investigation into Lev Dermen’s Link to Belize
Musa says that if the messages or any other documents prove some level of criminality, public pressure will be applied on Commissioner of Police Chester Williams to launch a criminal [...]

AG Peyrefitte Lays Into Kareem Musa over MLAT
By this afternoon, Attorney General Michael Peyrefitte responded to Caribbean Shores Area Representative Kareem Musa, despite not being in receipt of the letter in reference to Minister of National Security [...]

Waiting for Testimony is Easier than Bureaucracy of a Formal Request – AG Peyrefitte
Attorney General Peyrefitte says that even if he were to proceed with such a request to obtain the names of the government ministers from U.S. Attorney General William Barr, the [...]

John Saldivar: “Not a corrupt bone in my body!!! Me dah God Pickney!!!”
The man in the eye of the storm here in Belize is John Birchman Saldivar. The Minister of National Security took to social media today saying that he stands proud. [...]

Lev Dermen, W.R.E. and the Belize Connection
Jury selection continued today in the District Court in Utah, where Lev Dermen is facing up to ten charges relating to money laundering in a case brought against him by [...]

B.N.T.U. and M.O.E. at Odds over Education Regulation
The B.N.T.U. and the Ministry of Education are at odds again. In the latest round, the B.N.T.U. says they have no favourable responses from the ministry to the list of [...]

Ministry of Education Willing to Consult
According to Doctor Babb, the Ministry is committed in consulting with the union to avoid any escalation of tensions.   Dr. Carol Babb, Chief Education Officer “We are willing to [...]

False Alarm: Coronavirus Scare on Caye Caulker; No Cases in Belize
As the coronavirus spreads across the globe, there was a huge scare in Caye Caulker on Monday night when reports spread like wildfire that a visiting Chinese national was experiencing [...]

Earthquake Sent Tsunami Fears across the Country
A seven point seven magnitude earthquake struck earlier today about eighty miles from Jamaica, shaking several Caribbean islands, including Cayman and as far away as Miami. There were several aftershocks, [...]

Is the Caribbean at Risk of Increased Earthquakes?
Today’s earthquake was preceded by magnitudes six point four and five point eight quakes that struck Puerto Rico. That territory experienced a number of aftershocks and experienced significant damage. Earlier [...]

JLSC Case to be Heard on February 19th
A lawsuit brought against Chief Justice Kenneth Benjamin as chair of the Judicial and Legal Services Commission is set to commence on February nineteenth before Justice Michelle Arana.  The presiding [...]

Shyne and Dalla’s Dispute Settled, says Attorney Kareem Musa
Two weeks ago we told you of the legal dispute brewing between Troy “DJ Dalla” Flowers and Shyne Barrow. DJ Dalla faced court action by Belize Brewing Company after he [...]

Former Cop Darren Martinez Sentenced to 12 Years for Sexual Assault of Minor
Sentencing for former police constable Dаrrеn Маrtіnеz took place today. Martinez was found guilty last week of the sexual assault of a minor in an incident that goes back to [...]

Anabell Kumul Gets 15 Years for Manslaughter
Justice Colin Williams also imposed a sentence of fifteen years on forty-two year-old Anаbеll Кumul, who was initially charged with murder, but instead pleaded guilty to manslaughter of her common-law-husband, [...]

B.E.L. Submits FTRP Application to P.U.C. for the Next Four Years
Light bills are not expected to increase between now and the end of the year. That’s the word from the Belize Electricity Limited which has made an application to the [...]

B.E.L. to Invest $280M over the Next Five Years
B.E.L. also announced today that it plans on investing almost three hundred million dollars in the national electricity grid over the next five years to connect to new renewable sources [...]

FCD Hosts Exchange Programme with 5 Guat Communities
F.C.D. held a two-day bi-national youth exchange programme with youths from five Guatemalan communities that fringe the Chiquibul National Park. The purpose of the exchange was to sensitize and help [...]

Literacy & Empowerment Adult Program Launched
The Ministry of Education today launched the Literacy and Empowerment Adult Programme. The programme seeks to empower adults who struggle with basic reading and comprehension skills. The lessons will be [...]

“Adolescents Engaged for Change & a Sustainable Future”
Day two of a regional adolescents and youth forum took place today at the Radisson Hotel in Belize City. Today’s discussions centred on the topic of mental health and the [...]

Amandala

Invoke MLAT, Hon. Kareem Musa tells PM Barrow and AG Peyrefitte
Hon. John Saldivar’s name surfaced last Thursday, in court documents from the United States v Lev Dermen case, but Prime Minister Dean Barrow asserted that was not sufficient evidence to take action against Belize’s Minister of National Security. Today, Caribbean Shores area representative, Hon. Karee Musa wrote to the PM and Attorney General, Michael Peyrefitte, urging them to use the Mutual Legal Assistant Treaty with the United States, that was legislated domestically as the Mutual Legal Assistance in Criminal Matters (Belize/ USA) Act,` to get to the evidence.

BNTU and MoE heading “for war”
There is tension brewing between the Belize National Teachers Union (BNTU) and the Ministry of Education (MoE), and both sides fired off press releases today, castigating each other. BNTU national president, Hon. Senator Elena Smith, told Amandala in a telephone interview tonight that the union’s “position remains unchanged, because we have not gotten any acceptable response from them. We have met with the Ministry, but it was only for them to tell us what they are going to do. Those matters have not been fully ventilated.”

Bloody weekend – 4 executions, and victim of 38 days succumbs
The country saw a total of 4 execution-style murders, and another shooting victim, after 38 days, finally succumbed, all in the 4-day period from Friday to Monday morning. The latest victim, Ronald Anthony Michael, Jr., 28, a laborer of Giles Street, died this morning, Monday, after a gunman shot him in a yard on Ordonez Street. Yvonne Michael, his mother, told us that she had a premonition that something bad was going to happen to him, and warned him to be careful. Last night he called his sister and told her and his mother not to worry about him, because he was fine and was being careful.

Kobe Bryant, basketball great, dead at 41
At first, it sounded like fake news in social media. That was the reaction of many who got the news via Facebook, until gradually, the grim details began to emerge on Sunday that Kobe Bryant, one of the greatest basketball players the National Basketball Association has ever seen, had perished in a helicopter crash in Los Angeles. A total of nine persons died, including Bryant and his 13-year-old daughter, Gianna, when the helicopter, which was given special clearance to fly in foggy conditions, slammed into the mountainside and exploded.

More drug planes … more drug planes …
Less than five days after an intact suspected drug plane was found abandoned in the remote area between Crooked Tree, Belize District, and Shipyard, Orange Walk District, on Wednesday morning, another suspected drug plane was found this morning, but this time in a remote area between Monkey River and Punta Negra, Toledo District, in the south of the country. The plane was seen severely damaged and burnt. It is believed that it crash-landed and it was deliberately destroyed.

Herman Longsworth to be criminally investigated
Commissioner of Police Chester Williams has confirmed today Friday that the former Minister of State in the Ministry of Education, Youth and Sports (with special emphasis on Youth and Sports), Herman Longsworth, is being criminally investigated. Longsworth was elected on a United Democratic Party ticket in the 2012 general elections as the area representative for the Albert constituency. Three years later, in 2015, when the government called early elections, Longsworth gave up his Albert seat to newcomer Tracy Taegar-Panton and was rewarded with a job as Belize Consul General to New York.

The Association of Justices of the Peace says 2 government ministries disrespected them
The Association of Justices of the Peace and Commissioners of the Supreme Court performs a vital service to the community and to the criminal justice system, but the organization issued a press release today claiming that the Attorney General and the Immigration Department has been disrespectful of their organization. On Sunday, January 26, 2020 the organization held its 19th Annual General Meeting. “At this meeting, Members of the Association expressed their concerns regarding the disrespectful behavior of the Ministry of Immigration and the Attorney General who are responsible for all Justices of the Peace in the country,” the press release said.

Mason and co-accused’s kidnapping cases adjourned to March
In February 2017, the Senior Magistrate at the Belmopan Magistrate’s Court held a preliminary inquiry into two kidnapping charges against William “Danny” Mason and his four co-accused, and found that there was a prima facie case against the accused men. The case, however, is just making it onto the court calendar. Last week, there was a case management conference before Supreme Court Justice Francis Cumberbatch. Police charged Mason and his co-accused — Ernest Castillo, Keron Fernandez, Ashton Vanegas and Ryan Rhaburn — for the May 2016 kidnapping of Mennonite businessman Lloyd Thiessen and his wife.

Cops capture Shane Bennett, wanted for the shooting of Anthony Parks
Career criminal Shane Bennett, 38, who was on the run from police for allegedly shooting Anthony Parks, 37, a laborer of Independence, which occurred at about 6:30 Wednesday morning at Parks’ house in Independence, has been captured, but the details of the capture and where he was found were not revealed. The announcement that Bennett is now in police custody was made this morning by Commissioner of Police Chester Williams.

Editorial: Corruption is the greatest threat to a nation
Critics of the media in Belize say that the profession comes up short in the area of investigative journalism. The heroics of journalists in foreign countries, the lengths they go to research and bring the news to an eager populace, are not matched in Belize. One of the most celebrated efforts of journalists led to the resignation of a US president, Richard Nixon. The names of Bob Woodward and Carl Bernstein, two journalists for the Washington Post, are held in the highest esteem in the US for the work they did to bring to light the break-in at the Watergate Hotel office of the Democratic Party in Washington D.C. in 1972.

US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo’s Jamaica visit seen as divisive within CARICOM
The United States Secretary of State Mike Pompeo’s two-day working visit to Jamaica has been widely viewed as divisive within the 15-nation group that makes up CARICOM. Barbados’s Prime Minister, Mia Mottley, who currently sits as the chairperson of CARICOM, did not send her foreign minister to the meeting, citing the divisive nature of the Donald Trump administration for the Caribbean region.

International Customs Day 2020
The Belize Customs and Excise Department celebrated International Customs Day by hosting an information fair in the parking lot of the Belize Civic Center last Friday. Traditionally, Customs personnel are seen at the borders and airports checking the contents of luggage and enforcing the taxation laws in regards to bringing cargo in and out of the country. Recently, however, the department’s functions have expanded to trade facilitation and security, which was one of the key topics discussed at the fair.

Reanna Willoughby, 15, missing
Reanna Willoughby, 15, has been reported missing by her family, who last saw her on Friday, when she left home to go to school. Despite their best effort to find her, her whereabouts remain unknown.

Old Road Football Classic Week 6 scores from Lucky Strike
The Dickie Hernandez Old Road Football Classic continued yesterday, Sunday, with two Week 6 games at the Lucky Strike Football Field. In game 1 at 1:00 p.m., Lucky Strike had to battle for a 4-3 win over the Rookies (from the same village). Lucky Strike goals were by Frederick Garbutt (30’ & 51’), Febe Esteverne (65’) and Keenen Gillett (80’); while Rookies got goals from Travis Herrera (25’ & 56’) and Augustine Smith, Jr. (74’).

Bandits on a tear at Week 3 of PLB Closing Season
Defending champions Verdes FC are the official standings leader at Week 3 of the Premier League of Belize (PLB) 2019-2020 Closing Season; but with only a 5-point deficit in the aggregate race for the CONCACAF League berth at the end of this season, Bandits Sport has sent a very strong message of their intentions, having blown out their first two opponents by lopsided scores. The Bandits proved their season opening 11-0 shelling of Placencia Assassins was no accident, when they destroyed a long tradition of problems at the MCC with their 5-0 thrashing of BDF FC yesterday.

Record attendance at most arenas in NEBL Week 1 games; home teams won 3 of 4
The National Elite Basketball League (NEBL) had a full slate of games this past weekend, as all 8 teams were in action. Every weekend, all teams will be playing a game, with 4 games on the schedule. On Friday night at the Civic Center in Belize City, Belize Hurricanes debuted with an 85-77 win over visiting defending champions, San Pedro Tiger Sharks. Tiger Sharks guard Francis Arana led all scorers with 27 pts, but the Hurricanes led the game from start to finish, behind double-figure scoring from Jamaal Samuel 19 pts, Alex Carcamo and Jamell Harris with 17 pts each, and Ashton Edwards (formerly of Tiger Sharks) with 12 pts.

Letter to my Area Rep and Standard Bearer
I’ve said that in the next general election I’m voting for the present area rep of Cayo South, Hon. Julius Espat, but this letter also goes to Mr. Ramon Witz, the standard bearer for the UDP, because every day counts in our lives, and his party has the funds to get our pathway done. He won’t win my vote this time around bikaaz the party has done a lot of blank and they’ve been in power too long. I think Ramon should seize the chance and get the right thing done. He might win the votes of others in our area if he shows that he cares about the lives of people in Cayo South.

Hospital tension between Jerome and Jewel
Uncle Lito and his friends had left early on Easter Monday morning, because they had arrived in a sailboat belonging to a northern fisherman which they had had to return by that evening. Jerome, who was travelling in the same direction, had decided to postpone his departure until the afternoon, at Alida’s request, so that he could take the girls (myself unknowingly included under that heading} trolling in the speedboat.

Romel Cuello stands by his comments on the plastic ban in Belize
Dear Editor, I would like to thank Brother Colin Hyde for paying attention to my letter regarding the plastic ban in Belize. He states that I am all alone, but that is not a problem for me. All I would like to know is, if what I wrote “makes sense”, as we Belizeans put it. I do not think the ban will affect him directly, because I don’t think he depends on the food vendors for his daily food. I am just thinking of the lower-end income-earners, since most of the restaurants that cater to the tourist sector already use these biodegradable products. Most of the tourists and upper-end income earners demand it.

Cuba answers the call for doctors
“Havana’s Latin American Medical School takes passionate young people from developing countries and sends them home as doctors. It’s all about driving health equity”, writes Gail Reed. Now the challenge is to get medical societies to accept them. Dr Midalys Castilla is animated as she talks about the graduates of Havana’s Latin American Medical School (ELAM) who are serving with Cuban medical teams in post-’quake Haiti.

From the Publisher
Virginia Echols, an African American lady who has been living and working in Belize for more than a quarter century, and has been active with Kremandala and our UBAD Educational Foundation (UEF) over those years, and I hadn’t talked in months, but this past Sunday morning we got to chatting after her Sunday morning religious show on KREM Radio – “Moments of Inspiration.” Some years ago, it seemed to me that Virginia and Ya Ya Marin Coleman, who has been the chairlady of UEF for a dozen years or so, got to “beefing,” as we would say in the streets.

The Reporter

Belize’s NEMO Issues All-CLEAR, No Tsunami For Belize After 7.7 Earthquake
NEMO has issued the ALL CLEAR at 3:05pm. There is no longer a Tsunami threat to the coast of Belize. The USGS upgraded the earthquake which occurred in the ocean between Cuba and Jamaica to a magnitude 7.7 earthquake. Shortly after the quake the Government of Jamaica issued a tsunami warning, which means that hazardous waves of 3 feet or greater is expected within the next hour.

Guatemalan President On The Move With Business Agenda
Guatemalan President Alejandro Giammattei on Monday offered his Salvadoran counterpart, Nayib Bukele, the opportunity to build and operate a port in Guatemalan waters in the Atlantic Ocean to promote commerce.

Kareem Musa to Prime Minister: We Want Answers
PUP Caribbean Shores Area Representative Kareem Musa has written a letter to Prime Minister Dean Barrow and Attorney General Michael Peyrefitte, regarding the allegations that Armenian American Lev Dermen, on trial for massive fraud, bribed at least one and likely...

Jumoke Castro Ignores Order To File Response -Explanation
Jumoke Castro has reportedly failed to submit an explanation to his superiors at the Belize Tax Service for a vile Facebook post he allegedly made in December...

VIDEO: School Girl Badly Beaten By Street Woman
A very disturbing video has been obtained by the REPORTER, which shows a school-girl being badly beaten by a street woman. The child is in her school uniform and is either on her way to school or coming from school.

LOVE FM

Japan embassy signs grant contract
The signing of a grant contract took place this morning at the Japanese Embassy in Belize. The grant is between the Embassy and the Corozal Town Council. Caye Correspondent Pauline Soberanis Tillett told us more.

Full Tariff Review Proceeding 2020-2024
The Belize Electricity Limited (BEL) has produced an estimate of their Full Tariff Review Proceeding that could possibly result in lower rates for consumers. The company submitted the application to the Public Utilities Commission (PUC). The Tariff period will commence on July 1 and will end on June 30, 2024. According to a press release from the Belize Electricity Limited the submission represents BEL’s forecasts over the Full Tariff Proceedings. While the current forecasts project increasing costs and a Mean Electricity Rate (MER) of $0.4533 on average. The Company’s intention is to maintain the current rates to customers up to December 31. Dawn Sampson Nunez emphasized that the figures are merely an estimate.

Tsunami watch issued for Belize; All Clear issued as well
For a few hours this afternoon, Belize was under a Tsunami Watch following a 7.7 magnitude earthquake off the coast of Cuba around one thirty. The effects of the earthquake spanned to the Cayman Islands, causing massive infrastructural damage.

Kareem Musa calls on PM to take action in Lev Derman case
The Mutual Legal Assistance in Criminal Matters Act was signed in 2001, ratified in 2003 and is being referenced in 2020 as part of the Lev Dermen saga. Caribbean Shores Representative, Kareem Musa, via a letter, is calling on the Prime Minister and the Attorney General to invoke this Act.

Literacy and Empowerment Adult Program (LEAP)
The Ministry of Education launched their first-ever Literacy and Empowerment Adult Program (LEAP). The program is open to adults who want to learn to read and write; or who want to improve on their parenting skills. Chief Education Officer, Dr Carol Babb told the media that as much as 60 adults from the Collet Division have already registered for the program.

Discussing issues affecting our youths
The Adolescents and youth engaged for change and a sustainable future forum kicked off day two in Belize City with a discussion with students of Belize about HIV/AIDS. The forum’s primary goal is to address issues amongst youths such as gender-based violence, teenage pregnancy, human trafficking, among others.

‘Let’s not fight’ responds the MOE
The Belize National Teachers Union (BNTU) has been contemplating strike action in recent days over three points of contention that they have with the Ministry of Education. While the final decision is still pending there is a war with words going on between the union and the ministry. Just yesterday the ministry sent out a release appealing to the teachers not to be misinformed. According to the ministry, there are amendments that they want to put into place to the Education Rules, but it would require a Statutory Instrument which is still not in place.

Chaya: diner with the Maya exhibit closes
Chaya! Dinner with the Maya: an exhibit at the Mexican Cultural Institute ended yesterday. The exhibit was curated by Dr. Anabel Ford focusing on the Maya Society of El Pillar and its forest.

Mexican Woman serves 15 years in prison after killing her spouse
A 42-year-old Mexican woman has been sentenced to fifteen years in prison after admitting to killing her spouse, Felix Alamilla. Annabella Kumul was before Justice Colin Williams on a charge of manslaughter which stems back from July 2014.

FCD invites Guatemalan youths to learn conservation
Over the weekend, Friends for Conservations and Development (FCD) hosted an exchange program with youths from five Guatemalan communities. These communities are unique because they fringe the Chiquibul National Park.

Improving the quality and gender equity of Education
Yesterday, the Prime Minister, Dean Barrow, and Country Representatives of the Inter-American Development Bank (IDB), Dr Cassandra T. Rogers, signed an agreement for a US$10 million loan. This loan goes directly towards improving the quality...

Attorney says Dalla and Shyne will settle
The last update we had reported concerning a court case involving Shyne Barrow and Troy ‘DJ Dalla’ Flowers, was that the two were looking to settle out of court. Well, that’s what Dalla’s attorney, Kareem...

Is Belize Prepared if the Coronavirus hits?
All eyes remain on the Coronavirus. Belize’s health officials met in emergency session this morning in Belmopan to do their assessments of where the virus currently stands, how far it has spread and what measures...

10 Million Dollars to Improve the quality of Education
The Government of Belize received ten million dollars today with the aim to improve the quality of education. Signing on behalf of the Government was Prime Minister Dean Barrow.

Tension grows between BNTU and Ministry of Education
The Executive District Branches of the Belize Teachers Union met in their respective areas over the weekend to decide whether they will proceed with strike action or continue their subtle forms of protest. The discussion is based on three points of contention that the union has been having with the Ministry of Education, namely, their vacation days; emergency hiring of teachers and the renewal of contracts.

Another drug Plane in Belize
For the second time this year, Belize Police are dealing with another suspected narco-plane. Security Forces were on high alert this weekend after reports began circulating of an aircraft hovering in the deep south.

Lev Dermen begins; which Minister will be named?
The Lev Dermen trial commenced today in Salt Lake City, Utah, USA. The case has to do with a multi-million-dollar scheme that Dermen and his former business partner, Jacob Kingston, carried out using an oil company in the US.

Breaking Belize NewsPJ

Teen defends himself against allegation of handling stolen horse
A teenager who was found in possession of a $15,000 horse stolen from Bacab Eco-Park […]

Evangelicals claim “90 per cent” rejection of Equal Opportunities Bill
Who won the debate on the Equal Opportunities Bill, subject of recent public consultations? It depends […]

Another shooting in Lake I
Earlier tonight a man was shot in Belize City. He has since been identified but […]

Man charged for December robbery
One person has been charged in connection with a robbery last December, Nadir Mendoza. It […]

Utah Washakie Renewable Energy case underway
The Salt Lake Tribune has provided a primer on the now-ongoing Washakie Renewable Energy case […]

Ex-cop given minimum 12-year sentence for sexual assault of female minor
Former police constable Darren Martinez, 24, convicted in December of assault of a child under […]

Mexican woman handed 15-year sentence for partner’s manslaughter death
Mexican national Annabelle Kumul, 42, who was charged with murder but had pleaded guilty to […]

NEMO issues All clear
The National Meteorological Service of Belize and the National Emergency Management Organization (NEMO) informs that […]

Kareem Musa writes A.G., P.M. on Dermen records
Area representative for Caribbean Shores Kareem Musa is pressing Prime Minister Dean Barrow and Attorney […]

“No case of novel coronavirus in Belize,” says Ministry of Health
The Ministry of Health said today that there are no confirmed cases of the novel […]

Over 4,000 cases of novel coronavirus confirmed around the world
The coronavirus is a large family of viruses that cause illness ranging from the common […]

Police investigate circumstances surrounding death of infant
Police are investigating the circumstances surrounding the death of an infant from San Estevan, Orange […]

Micah launches 2nd annual scholarship fund
Belize City Councilor, Micah Goodin, has launched the 2nd annual Micah Goodin Scholarship Fund. Last […]

“Teachers ready for action,” says BNTU
The Belize National Teachers Union (BNTU) says that its teachers are “ready for action” in […]

Two charged for broad daylight robbery in Burrell Boom
Brandon Escarpeta, 23, originally from San Ignacio Town, Cayo District but now residing in Ladyville, Belize […]

Belize tourism recovers after a slow start
After a sluggish peak tourist season, things were looking grim for tourism growth in Belize, […]

Blogs

Do’s and Don’ts for a Stay In Belize
If you’ve never been to a place before, even with today’s information technology, the experience could be different from what you may have anticipated. Here are some tips so you can make the most of your time in Belize. Belize is warm all year round, and even our chilly spells only warrant a light sweater or jacket. Yes, you will need swimwear and beach attire. Even for evening, the order of the day is casual, casual, casual. However, if you venture into the jungle you will need cotton pants and sturdy footwear for hikes, and of course, sunglasses and a hat, and plenty of insect repellent.

Spotting Jaguar and Jaguarundi in Belize
Of course, the jaguar is the main attraction, but travelers must be aware that it is quite rare to actually see a jaguar. You could, however, glimpse its tracks on trails riverbanks. During your hike, you will get to see a lot of local wildlife and tropical birds. Your naturalist guide will point out plants and herbs used for medicinal purposes. The second smallest of Belize’s wild cats, the jaguarundi, is odd looking. It has a long, slender body and a small flattened head, short legs, a long tail, and rounded ears. They may be of different colors.

Reasons to Visit Southern Belize in June
Down south you’ll find all the cultures of Belize – Garifunas, East Indians, Mayans, Mennonites, Creoles, Mestizos and Asians all living and associating with each other. Dangriga is known as the “kulcha capital” of Belize; here you can learn everything about the Garinagu people and try their delicious traditional dishes. In the Toledo district you can learn about the East Indians and Mayan people; see how they live, how they gather their foods and prepare their dishes, get a feel for their lifestyle.

International Sourcesizz

Americans living Belize please take note!
If you are a U.S. citizen living abroad, now is the time to register to vote absentee. It's faster than taking your dog for a walk!

Caribbean urged to prepare for long drought
The Barbados- based Caribbean Climate Outlook Forum (CariCOF) is warning that long-term drought is evolving throughout the Caribbean during the three-month period of February to April this year. In its latest Caribbean Climate Outlooks, published here yesterday, CariCOF warned that during the peak of the dry season, limited water availability will be caused by evolving or possible long-term drought throughout the Caribbean, except in French Guiana and north-west Bahamas. “In addition, frequent dry spells and short-term drought in a majority of places may pose water stress to sensitive, rain-fed crops. There is marginal concern for flooding and flash floods in Belize and the islands through March, but some concern in April. Temperatures, seasonably cool and comfortable until March, will start rising by April,” CariCOF added.


Re: Today's Belize News: January 29, 2020 [Re: Marty] #540292
01/29/20 06:41 AM
01/29/20 06:41 AM
Joined: Oct 1999
Posts: 65,148
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Marty Offline OP

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Marty  Offline OP

Videos

  • DAY 2- Adolescents and Youth Engaged for Change & A Sustainable Future Forum., 3hr.

  • Afternoon Session: Adolescents and Youth Engaged for Change & A Sustainable Future, 2.5hr.

  • A view from Hok'ol'Kin Guest House Corozal, Belize, 3min. Featuring free WiFi and a restaurant, HokolKin Guesthouse Hotel offers accommodation in Corozal. Guests can enjoy the on-site restaurant. Every room has a TV with satellite channels. There is a 24-hour front desk at the property.

  • Channel 5 Obituaries - ERNESTO MARTIN WILLIAMS, 2min.

  • Belize TOO! Education Expo 2020, 1.5min. It’s BTOOEE 2020 – We’re inviting all high schools to bring out their seniors as they get ready to enter higher education and want access to practical information about colleges and universities at home and abroad!

  • Musical interlude. Last Friday at the Belize Soul project, space for the arts & productions. What a night!, 8min.

  • Yochi Trailer, 1.5min. Yochi, a 9-year-old selectively mute Mayan boy, guards a nest of endangered Yellow-Headed Parrots in Belize's pine savannah. When his beloved older brother, Itza, returns from the city, Yochi learns that he’s in debt and has turned to poaching – setting the brothers on a collision course.

  • Belize Diving 2020, 4min.

  • Caye Caulker // Belize // Aguas azules // Vista aérea, 4min. Un lugar para disfrutar de aventuras acuáticas y relajarse en su máxima expresión, un lugar para disfrutar de todos los tonos azules que el mar nos puede ofrecer, un lugar que te lleva a soñar con vivir de vacaciones para siempre y un estilo de vida que te invita a pasartela bien.

  • Golf Cart in to San Pedro, Ambergris Caye, Belize, 16min. I view of our golf cart ride into San Pedro from the condo we were staying at. Nothing special pretty good view of downtown San Pedro.


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