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Today's Belize News: April 4, 2020 #541472
04/04/20 06:42 AM
04/04/20 06:42 AM
Joined: Oct 1999
Posts: 71,960
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, 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

74 arrested and charged across the country for breaching curfew regulations; six are from Ambergris Caye
On Wednesday, April 1st at mid-night, Belize went into a 30-day countrywide State of Emergency following the confirmation of the third COVID-19 (Coronavirus) case in the country. One of the measures put in place was a curfew to be implemented from 8PM to 5AM every day. Failure to comply would see persons being arrested and charged. The first evening of the curfew saw 74 persons countrywide being arrested and charged for various offenses under the curfew regulations. Out of those 74, six were arrested in San Pedro Town for failing to adhere to the law.

NEMO San Pedro conducts mock drill as Belize registers fourth COVID-19 case
On Friday April 3rd, the National Emergency Management Organization (NEMO) Belize Rural South held a mock drill in San Pedro Town. This exercise included transportation of a person acting as an ill patient to the new San Pedro Care Center via the designated ambulance on the island. This practice was done to ensure the care team is prepared to handle all aspects of protocol. Shortly after 10AM, the wailing sound of sirens filled the air as the ambulance made its way from the San Pedro Care Center to pick up the ‘patient’.

COVID-19 eServices Citizens Portal for Unemployment Relief Program
The Government of Belize announces the launch of the COVID-19 eServices Portal through which persons may apply to the COVID-19 Unemployment Relief Program which is being established through the agreement of the co-chairs of the COVID-19 National Oversight Committee. The Central Information Technology Office posted the application form at 10:00 p.m. April 2nd, and within the first half hour over 60 persons made applications for unemployment relief.

FRAUD ALERT – Counterfeit Belize Currency Notes
The Central Bank of Belize and the Financial Intelligence Unit issue this alert to inform the public of the circulation of counterfeit Belize currency notes. The public is urged to become familiar with the security features of the currency notes issued by the Central Bank of Belize. Recognizing the security features will protect the public from fraud committed using counterfeit Belize currency notes.

Puerto Secreto Foundation and SPBE join in relief efforts for Ambergris Caye
Relief efforts continue on Ambergris Caye, as she was the recipient of two separate shipments of goods (groceries) on Thursday, April 2nd designated for the less fortunate during the COVID-19 (Coronavirus) crisis. The first shipment was donated by the San Pedro Belize Express (SPBE) Water Taxi, which delivered over $30,000 worth of food items to Caye Caulker and Ambergris Caye.

Ambergris Today

Hidden Treasure Feeds Frontline Workers On Ambergris Caye
Today the staff of Hidden Treasure volunteered selflessly prepare lunch for the San Pedro policemen, health care providers and the sanitation workers who are keeping the island safe during this difficult time we are all experiencing on our lovely Isla Bonita. A total of 160 meals were distributed altogether. Thank you Hidden Treasure staff! You all Rock! And a special thank you to all our frontline workers who serve our island so proudly! We will win this battle united!

Belize Ministry Of Health Confirms Fourth Case Of COVID-19 In Cayo
The enhanced surveillance system of the Ministry of Health has identified a fourth case of COVID-19 in a 55-year-old male who resides in San Ignacio, Cayo District. The patient tested positive in a confirmatory test ran earlier today, April 3rd, 2020, at 1:16 a.m.

Various Belizean Sources


Saga Humane Society looking for foster homes
At the moment Saga Humane Society is looking for foster homes for 14 dogs and 12 cats! We are asking for the community’s assistance during this time, foster care means you will temporarily house either a dog or cat. Saga humane society will provide all necessary supplies during this time. If you would like to foster kindly send us a message on our Facebook page to arrange meet up times or call 226-3266 and Walter will assist you.

Ministry of Health Confirms Fourth Case of COVID-19
The enhanced surveillance system of the Ministry of Health has identified a fourth case of COVID-19 in a 55-year-old male who resides in San Ignacio. The patient tested positive in a confirmatory test ran earlier today, April 3rd, 2020, at 1:16 a.m. The person had a fever, mild cough, and difficulty breathing five days ago, and was referred for medical care at a public care facility on Tuesday, March 31st. A swab was taken, and screening and confirmatory tests were done on the sample confirming the results. He is currently in an isolated area within the Western Regional Hospital compound.

COVID-19 eServices Citizens Portal for Unemployment Relief Program
The Government of Belize announces the launch of the COVID-19 eServices Portal through which persons may apply to the COVID-19 Unemployment Relief Program which is being established through the agreement of the co-chairs of the COVID-19 National Oversight Committee. The Central Information Technology Office posted the application form at 10:00 p.m. April 2nd, and within the first half hour over 60 persons made applications for unemployment relief. On March 16th, the co-chairs agreed to establish the Economic Oversight Team to oversee the establishment and operationalization of the Unemployment Relief Program, among other things.

Application for COVID-19 Unemployment Relief Program
Kindly click the link to access the application form for the COVID-19 Unemployment Relief Program. The form can be printed, filled out, and a clear photo or scanned copy of the application can be emailed to [email protected]

Belize Companies and Corporate Affairs Registry – Closure of Office
The public is hereby notified that the Belize Companies and Corporate Affairs Registry is closed for business today, April 3, 2020. The Registry apologises for any inconvenience caused. Members of the public are strongly advised to take precautionary measures and adhere to the restrictions under the declared state of emergency. The Registry thanks the public for its understanding and cooperation.

Looking for a way to make your homeschooling a little more interesting?
Why not learn about crocodiles! Check out what ACES / American Crocodile Education Sanctuary is offering!Want to do something to switch up the homeschool routine during this turbulent period? In an effort to alleviate some of our financial burden, we are offering Skype (or WhatsApp) educational sessions for you and/or your kids. For $10usd, we’ll do 15 minutes of education where you’ll meet Bhudda, one of our unreleasable croc ambassadors. We can cater the education to any age, and can focus the session on behavior, biology, physiology, habitat, the world of wildlife conservation, or all of the above!

Koroanavairos #1
How to talk about the virus in Kriol! Something to practice today. English: COVID-19 Precautions from the US Center for Disease Control and Prevention Kriol: Tingz fi du fi help mek yu noh geh sik fahn COVID-19, fahn di “US Center for Disease Control and Prevention”

(Friday, April 3, 2020) Recent amendments have been made to the Statutory Instrument governing the state of emergency which, prior to today, did not consider municipal body operations to be essential. Consequently, the following operational measures for the Belize City Council reflect that adjustment and take effect as of today, April 3, 2020: 1. Our cashiers at the Belize City Hall will be open and available from Monday to Friday 9:00am — 1:00pm. In the interest of social distancing, we encourage residents who have the ability to make Property Tax and Trade License payments online to do so at Payments can also be made via Scotia Bank Account, (Ace. Name: Belize City Council Ace. No. 9133780 Transit No. 91595) or our Atlantic Bank Account (Ace. Name: Belize City Council Ace. No. 100225187)...

Sailboat approaches Utila from Colombia
During the early hours of the night of April 1st, one of our volunteer patrollers spotted a sailboat coming towards Utila. He quickly notified the rest of the team and they headed down to the public dock to see what was going on. After finding out the sailboat had came all the way from Cartagena, Colombia, red flags went up in our community. The captains all got in their boats and headed towards the sailboat to find out what they were doing in our waters since all borders are on lock down. They told our team that they were here legally and authorized. They were asked repeatedly to leave the island since our borders are on lockdown but they refused to go.

Oxygen Safety & Training Services. in San Pedro
This past Days have been very good in everyway possible Visited the Dr. Otto Polyclinic to assist with the Adaptation of Oxygen Regulators to be able to be used with The Humidifier, also Checked their portble oxygen Cylinders to ensure they are in good working condition, also donated to them an infant BVM, 2 Oxygen Hand Wheel Wrench to be able to smoothley open portable Oxygen Cylinders. Yesterday went to the Quarantine Area at The old Aces Building and assisted with the Installation of the Oxygen Regulators with the Humidifiers, also Adapted a Oxygen Regulator to be used with the Humidifier and build a small fixture which was placed on the Emergency Cart to be able to have an oxygen Cylinder with a Regulator Ready for the Patients that will be treated there if the need Arises.

After the "closure" of the border by Belize on March 21st, as a result of the COVID-19 health emergency, the flow of Belizeans and undocumented persons on the banks of the Hondo River has increased. In fact, Mexican taxi drivers arrive to drop off people all the way from Playa del Carmen , Cancun and Campeche. Many off them to continue their journey or to simply drop of contraband merchandise to the border town of La Union. The area is also close to the border with Guatemala connecting to 18 nearby communities, so it also becomes a passage for undocumented migrants of that nationality, including Hondurans, not only through La Unión but through other communities such as Rovirosa Enriqueta Cruz Naranjo.

We have in our possession a leaked copy of an internal Belize City Council Memo. The memo outline a list of financial moratoriums that the council will be effecting over the next six months (in the first instance) However, the list of things that the Council will discontinue pales compared to the 50% SALARY CUT the workers will have to endure come the 15 April. The other things on the list include the freezing of • Salary Advances & Employee Loans; • Increments and salary adjustments; • Creation and/or filling of new posts; ...

Tour and explanation of Manuel Villamor's Historical Mural
One of our most popular requests is a tour and explanation of Manuel Villamor's Historical Mural located at the Corozal Town Hall. This Belizean treasure tells the history of Corozal Town. The Corozal House of Culture is dedicated to the promotion and preservation of this iconic artwork. Every couple of years we touch up any paint that has fallen off (minimal) and we have sealed it with a protective latex coating. Below is a brochure we produced several years ago. The brochure shows the three different versions beginning in 1953, up until its final version in 2003, along with an detailed explanation and a short biography of the artist. The photo of Mr. Manuel in the brochure was taken in 2012 as he did he final restoration of the mural at age 84. Mr. Villamor passed away in 2018 in Chetumal, Mexico where he had been residing for years. We are so very thankful and grateful for this iconic mural, his legacy continues to live on. Rest in Peace dear Manuel.

Ministry of Human Development, Social Transformation and Poverty Alleviation – Closure of Cayo Office
The Ministry of Human Development, Social Transformation and Poverty Alleviation hereby advises the public that its Cayo office is closed until further notice. Persons in Cayo needing assistance can instead contact the Belmopan office at one of the following numbers: (501)822-2246, (501)822-2161, or (501)822-2684.

Our families are facing tremendous challenges during the State of Emergency caused by COVID-19. The three main suppliers of Liquid Petroleum Gas in Belize are concerned about the health and well being of employees, as well as our customers. The world prices are shifting and we have amended our prices to reflect the change. We see the long lines for supplies at the stores. Cooking your own food and stretching your dollar is important and that is why Zeta Gas, Gas Tomza LTD and Belize Western Energy Limited have put competition aside to offer you prices that will keep your stoves burning as we do our best to feed our families during these hard times. The new prices for LPG for each district are listed below. Stay safe and keep the fire burning.

Mayor Trapp will be addressing Cayo this morning at 9:00am
Tune in this morning, Saturday 4th April at 9AM when we talk to San Ignacio/Santa Elena Mayor, Earl Trapp as he clarifies misinformation regarding the timeline of the contact of Belize's 4th Covid19 case with the town council. Channel 13 - Central TV & Internet. Channel 52 - Centaur Cable Network. 100.7 FM Cayo District.

Sunday Services Online
The National Channel continues to air live Sunday service for you to enjoy in the comfort of your home during this state of Emergency. Tune in on April 5th at 9:00 AM for live mass in English

The U.S. Embassy is seeking eligible and qualified applicants for the following position: Security Investigator (Foreign Service National Investigator) Closing date: April 8, 2020

Corona Virus Music Video Competition
Make Belize Films in consultation with the San Pedro EOC bring to you the Corona Virus Music Video Competition. All Belizean youths are invited to participate in this fun and educational competition. Win great prizes while you help spread awareness and stop the spread of the virus! Start shooting and enter your music video for a chance to win some great prizes!!!!

Learn about Archaeological Illustrations
Attention to all tour guides, artists and artisans!! Be sure to tune in tomorrow, April 4 2020 @ 10:00 AM (Belize Time) for the first installment of the lecture series on the Heritage Education Network Belize by Dr. Shawn Morton and Dr. Meaghan Peuramäki-Brown of the Stann Creek Regional Archaeology Project to learn about archaeological illustrations!

Active Women in our village: returning to the roots
A picture tells a thousand tales of society and culture. Yesterday, I found an image that sends various messages of resilience, Maya identity, and hope. The Image above was taken on March 31st 2020 at a farm in San Antonio, Cayo. It shows two females smiling for the picture as they go through the process of picking peanuts. For some it may be just an image shared on social media, however, the image represents many things in the context of Maya and San Antonio, Cayo identity.

A look back at Street Art Festival this past February
Great to see some of our Corozal artists who participated that day. Beautiful images by the fine people at ISCR.

Channel 7

Fourth Confirmed COVID Case
Belize has its recorded its fourth COVID-19 patient, and this one may represent a critical tipping point. By that we mean, this Patient 4, a 55 year old man from San Ignacio may be the first instance of community spread COIVD 19, meaning he had no recent travel history; he apparently contracted COVID-19 here in Belize. The implications of that are serious and far reaching, and while we will tell you all we know about him and his contacts, the first update tonight is on his condition. Reliable reports suggest that patient 4 is having breathing difficulties and was this evening sent from the Western Regional Hospital in Belmopan to the isolation ward at the KHMH - which is only to be used in the case of critical care patients.

Patient 4 Has Respiratory Problems
So, tonight patient 4 is a serious situation in more ways than one - ways in which we will fully explore on tonight's news. But we start at the beginning, where the tension of what has been a heavy day for Belize started to unfold just before 9:00 this morning when the Director of Health Services broke the bad news with a Facebook video post. He outlined all the basic facts about patient 4: "The fourth case is that of a 55 year old San Ignacio resident who was diagnosed confirmed at 1:16 this morning. The patient initially started with fever and signs of respiratory distress on Tuesday. He was isolated at the regional hospital on Tuesday evening. A swab was taken from him on Wednesday, and that test was screened and confirmed earlier today."

PM On Patient Four
As you heard earlier, he is on antibiotics because of that underlying pnuemonia. And, at midday in a national address, the Prime Minister disclosed a little more about patient 4 - including the fact that he lives in San Ignacio but works in Belize City: "The infected person is from the Cayo District, but up until about 11 days ago, had been traveling to and from Belize City where he worked."

#4's Covid Footprint
So, as the PM says, the medical tracing starts with the medical professionals who examined this 55 year old male both in san Ignacio - at a private clinic, and in Belmopan at the western Regional. But, it also spreads out into the community - the patient is known as a socially active man - and it extends to Belize City - where he worked at the City Council, which has 460 employees. This evening on Ask The Experts Dr. Manzanero outlined the large footprint of contacts patient 4 had when he was asymptomatic:..

Patient 4 Worked At City Hall
And, as we said, that workplace in Belize City is City Hall, home to 460 employees. Reports say he had only been into the office a few times since mid-March, but, still, the possible contacts are in the dozens. And, the Mayor of Belize City, Bernard Wagner is one of them. He also has to be tested because of his contact with this patient 4, who is a senior employee. We spoke to him via video call this afternoon:

San Ignacio Council Had Contact
And so, while those are the concerns of the Belize City Mayor and his staff about patient #4, the staff at the San Ignacio Santa Elena Town Council are worried that they may have also been exposed to the virus. Mayor Earl Trapp told us that his staff recently interacted with patient #4, and now, they are concerned that he may have passed the COVID-19 virus to them. We spoke with him today via telephone from the town hall building in San Ignacio:

Belizeans Banned From Borders
And, we apologies for that abrupt break due to a technical glitchwe start back up where we left off with the other nationally important measures benign taken to cope with COVID 19. The border closure, as we have reported, the airport and borders were closed to visitors in the week of March 23rd, but it remained open to Belizeans who cannot be denied entry to their country of citizenship. But, under a state of emergency, they can be, and the Prime Minister said that is the measure that the appearance of patient 4 has forced them to take:..

Next Week's Drastic SOE
And apart from that drastic step of closing the borders at 12:01 am on Sunday morning, the Prime Minister says there will also be other measures to add to the National State of Emergency next week. He didn't say exactly what they are, but we know they will be serious: Rt. Hon. Dean Barrow, Prime Minister "I hope that this fourth case will help to persuade them of the absolute gravity of the situation."

Don't Try to Cheat the SOE
And so now with a fourth case representing what may be a community spread of CVOID 19 in Belize, the Prime Minister says it should be a sobering wake up call to all those who have been trying to play games, or work around the state of emergency:.. "The circumstances of the Cayo case make clear that the danger of extensive human-to-human transmission is now upon us. I, therefore, reserve the right to come back to you next week to announce even more stringent shutdown directives."

Despite Curfew, Man Killed
Welcome back to 7News - if you're just tuning in, welcome - this is our second segment, the news started at 6:00 tonight, so we can all be home before the curfew starts... But last night's curfew didn't stop a killer in in Punta Gorda Town - he struck before the 8:00 pm lockdown.

Curfew Crackdown: 74 Locked Up
Last night many Belizeans experienced their first night of countrywide curfew from 8:00 pm to 5:00 am. It's a measure put in place under the state of emergency and at least in Belize City, it was announced by the chilling drone of cold war era sirens. Even so there were some who didn't get the message. And tonight police are already reporting that they have had to enforce curfew measures against those who were ignoring them.

Finally, The Forms Are Out
That is a steep fine to pay in hard times, and, right now, the most many who just lost their jobs are thinking about is that 75 dollars weekly in financial assistance that the government promised And they've been waiting for the forms for financial assistance had gone live on The form was uploaded to the site at 10:00 pm Thursday night, but demand on the site seems to have been too great and it crashed around 8:00 am today. Still, 5,000 applications for financial assistance had already been received.

Chef Ainslie Feeding 12 with $20
But while you wait for that direct deposit or for the website to come back up, you might need to do major budget stretching just to keep food on the table. And in this, the month of quarantine 7News has asked some friends to share recipes to help folks prepare meals on a tight budget. It's cooking for hard times like Michael Finnegan did with his Ketchup and Curry Corned Beef, and tonight, the well known Chef Ainsley shows you how to make Ramen miracles and feed a dozen people for twenty dollars.

What About The Homeless?
We've told you that last night saw 75 people arrested for breach of quarantine those were the "ears hard bikini" who refused to stay home. But what about those who don't have a home? For homeless people, covid-19 is horror on top of horror. That's because As the coronavirus spreads, unhoused people are among the most vulnerable to infection.

San Pedro, The Island Town of Firsts
Last night, we took you to both San Pedro and Caye Caulker for a 30,000-dollar donation of food items that the San Pedro Belize Express presented to both communities. Given the hardship of the COVID-19 pandemic, the water taxi company was giving back to the residents, who've given them success. Well, that donation's handing over gave us the opportunity to speak with the leaders about how the two islands are coping with the shutdown of all commercial activity since the tourism season has been abruptly terminated by COVID-19.

Caye C's Covid Scenario
While we were on Caye Caulker, we also spoke with the Chair of the Village Council about how this island is coping with the pandemic. Last year, they were chosen as the BTB's #1 Tourism Destination. As a community that also depends heavily on tourism as its main income earner, Caye Caulker is also experiencing the same financial ruin that other top destinations around the country are faced with. The Chairlady told us that the islanders are doing their best to look after their needs in this time of crisis:

Health Inspectors on Caye Caulker
The residents of Caye Caulker are hoping that they won't have to be concerned with any COVID-19 cases being discovered in the island village. But, as you've heard, they have taken precautions for that worst-case scenario, and a team of medical professionals from the Central Health Region traveled there yesterday to inspect their quarantine and isolation facilities. We got a chance to speak with the team leader about the vigilance that the Ministry of Health is maintaining on the island:

Police Adjust For COVID Reality
And with the community spread of COVID-19 likely in Belize, Police have had to tweak standard operating procedures. Today commissioner Chester Williams shared the various areas in standard operating procedures in which changes have and will continue to be made:

Police More Permissive on Passes?
Some have said that the tone being taken by the AG and the Commissioner of Police have been very different in reference to state of emergency passes. The AG has said there will be none for a week, and very few issued at all, because no one should be out during the curfew. The COMPOL on the hand has been a little more permissive in his overview. This evening commissioner Williams told us that while he agrees with the AG's stern opinions when it comes to the movements of essential workers, law enforcement quote; "Must allow common sense to prevail."

Babylon By the Rivers
And while the movements of City dwellers are being closely monitored. What's happening in rural areas? We wondered if the draconian measures are reaching every dirt road and riverbank. We put the question to the commissioner today. "Each district formation are told that they must do rural patrols..."

The Risk Of Contraband and COVID-19
And while police are covering as much ground and even river banks with patrols, and the government has locked down the borders to all persons - including Belizeans - what about those illegal border crossings, which contraband smugglers use?

Sagicor Saw A Need
And whether urban or remote area Police will need their version of personal protective equipment to carry out duties with minimum risk of exposure. But that's a challenge financially, one that the Commissioner has been raising funds to complete.

Face Masks For Many
And, another donation was made to the police yesterday. That's for face masks from the Belize Chinese Association. They made an initial donation of 1000 medical masks each to the Karl Heusner Memorial Hospital, the Ministry of Health, and the Belize Police Department.

Chinese Community, No Longer About Business
We also asked Ou about how the Chinese community, businesses in particular, are handling the COVID crisis at their retail and restaurant outlets. He said it's no longer about business:

The Tests So Far
And, as we wind down the news, back to our headline story. Belize's COVID patient four, a 55 year old man from San Ignacio is reportedly having respiratory difficulties and has been transferred to the KHMH isolation unit in Belize City. He is the first COIVD patient in Belize to require hospitalisation. Today, on Ask The Experts, we got an update on the number of tests done so far:

LPG, Going Down
The Central American LPG companies that supply Belize: Zeta Gas, Gas Tomza Limited, and Belize Western Energy Limited are announcing tonight that they are dropping the prices for liquified petroleum gas, better known as butane. They say that they see the struggle that Belizean families are facing right now due to the State of Emergency and the COVID-19 pandemic.

There Is a Place For The Homeless
Earlier in the news, we told you about the plight of the homeless who are not only extremely vulnerable to the COVID-19 pandemic but could, if infected, pose a threat to the health and well being of the entire populace.

Channel 5

COVID-19 Hits City Hall, Belize City Mayor to be Tested
At one-twenty-five this morning, a fourth case of COVID-19 was confirmed following a battery of tests of twenty-five persons.  The announcement was made before nine o’clock this morning to the [...]

Mayor Earl Trapp on Cayo COVID-19 Case
At least twenty persons have been included so far in the mapping exercise relating to the fourth person carrying the virus; this includes his immediate family members and those individuals [...]

Travel Ban in Effect Internally; Easter is Off
The month-long state of emergency is on its second day and includes a restriction on all out-district travel.  With Easter vacation only a week away, plans to visit other parts [...]

Belizeans Abroad to be Prohibited Re-entry
The National Oversight Committee, a multi-agency taskforce chaired by Prime Minister Dean Barrow and Opposition Leader John Briceño, has together agreed that all frontier points and ports of entry must [...]

MOH Undertakes Mapping for COVID-19 Patient Four
This afternoon, the Director of Health Services provided more details to the fourth case of the corona virus. Mapping started soon after the results were known involving the San Ignacio [...]

MOH Provides an Update on COVID-19 Testing
One hundred and forty persons have been tested from all over the country for the corona virus. Four are positive: two in san Pedro, one in Belize City and now [...]

COVID-19 Unemployment Relief Application is Ready!
Thousands have been left jobless in the tourism industry, as well as other sectors, as business comes to a halt. So, in Belize City and the districts, the unemployed persons [...]

Thousands Apply at S.S.B. for COVID-19 Unemployment Relief
As you heard, today many unemployed Belizeans applied for the COVID-19 unemployment relief from the government. We spoke with General Manager of Corporate and Customer Relations, Chandra Cansino about this [...]

74 Persons Arrested for Breaking Curfew
The state of emergency came into effect on April first and by Thursday night, the streets of the City and around the country were virtually empty of people and there [...]

Ismael Jacobs is Shot and Killed in PG
There was a murder on Thursday night in the Indianville community of Punta Gorda.  Sometime around seven p.m., PG police were called out to the area where they found twenty-seven-year-old [...]

DHS Speaks on Masks & Ventilators
As you know, during the Ask the Experts webcast the panelists field questions from the public. Two of the frequently asked questions today were about the use of masks and [...]

CitCo Running on Skeleton Staff Amid Coronavirus Crisis
The economic impact of the COVID-19 crisis is widespread and across the country municipal administrations are feeling the financial crunch.  Of the four hundred and twenty employees on staff at [...]

To Mask or Not To Mask?
Every sector is grappling with the impacts of COVID-19; municipalities are no exception. In Orange Walk, Mayor Kevin Bernard says the town council is adjusting to survive the months ahead [...]

COVID-19 Affecting Revenue Stream for City/Town Councils
Orange Walk Mayor Kevin Bernard is pleading to Prime Minister Dean Barrow to afford city and town councils across the district financial relief. Most councils have closed down and only [...]

Fishing – an Alternative in the Wake of Collapsed Tourism Industry?
The tourism industry has shut down due to the COVID-19 pandemic and now domestic tourism is also on hold for the upcoming Easter holidays. It is forecasted that the industry [...]

Sagicor Gives $10K for COVID-19 Response and Protection to the Police Department
Earlier in the month, Sagicor Financial Company Limited announced that is committing one million U.S. dollars to aid in the fight against COVID-19 in the Caribbean. The focus will be [...]

Re: Today's Belize News: April 4, 2020 [Re: Marty] #541473
04/04/20 06:42 AM
04/04/20 06:42 AM
Joined: Oct 1999
Posts: 71,960
oregon, spr
Marty Offline OP

Marty  Offline OP


COVID-19 locks down Belize
Belizeans all across the city were seen in lines at grocery stores, banks, credit unions, utility companies, and everywhere else in between where business is conducted, as the city prepared for what became the new normal after midnight last night, when the country of Belize slipped into a national State of Emergency that the government declared in its fight against the dreaded COVID-19 pandemic. At midnight last night, the ordinary freedoms that Belizeans have become accustomed to and which are guaranteed under the Belize Constitution were put on hold, as the Emergency Powers Regulations 2020 came into effect.

Mystery murder in Ladyville’s Milpa area
There was an early morning shooting in an isolated area of the Milpa area of Ladyville that left one man dead. When police went to the area, they found the body of a man who had recently moved into the area, according to neighbors who spoke on condition of anonymity. One neighbor told us that the man, identified as Raymond Cheristal, 57, in a police report today, had only moved into the unfinished house about two to three weeks ago.

Lotteries and all other games of chance suspended
The coronavirus pandemic (COVID-19) has been plunging the world into economic hardship as more countries implement lockdown measures in the effort to fight the virus that has swept across the countries of the world. At midnight last night, Belize entered into a national state of emergency in its fight against the virus. Beginning at 8:00 p.m. tonight, the curfew that accompanies the national state of emergency kicks in until 5:00 tomorrow morning, and during that time Belizeans who venture outside must have a Ministry of National Security pass or have some compellingly good reason to be outside, or risk being charged for curfew violation.

Fire destroys house in Dangriga
A house was completely destroyed by fire at about 1:30 this morning and another house in its close proximity suffered minor damages on its side. As a result, the house and all its contents were destroyed, and one person was left homeless. Information to us is that at about 1:30 this morning, the neighbors were sleeping when they were awakened by heat and smoke, and saw a house burning. The firemen were called, but by the time they came, the house already was engulfed in flames.

Media granted essential service status, but needs pass during curfew hours
During the national state of emergency, media workers have been granted essential service status. This basically means that reporters and camera crew and other support staff of the various media houses can traverse to and from work, but those who are able to work from home are being encouraged to do so. Late this evening a press release was issued on essential service workers. The release said, ”Authorized essential workers as outlined in Schedule One of S.I. No. 46 of 2020, who are required to work and move without restrictions during the curfew hours, will be allowed to move freely at any place or any time, while observing social distancing protocols, with a pass, authorized and signed by the Minister of National Security.”

Government explains parameters of national state of emergency
Following a press statement by Prime Minister Dean O. Barrow yesterday, in the wake of the confirmation of Belize’s third positive case of the coronavirus, the government called a press conference this morning in Belize City to explain measures that would be put in place as part of the national state of emergency that Barrow announced would be in effect for one month in an effort to fight against the COVID-19 pandemic. The national state of emergency, which will lead to an almost complete shutdown for most businesses in the country which are not considered as essential services, will be accompanied by a curfew which will run from 8:00 p.m. to 5:00 a.m. daily. Belizeans are being asked to stay in their homes and should only come out during the daylight hours to buy essentials.

Attorney Arthur Saldivar released on bail for firearm offenses
On Saturday, Belmopan police arrested attorney Arthur Saldivar for spreading “fake news” after he had made a Facebook post that suggested that people were being allowed into the country at the northern border in Santa Elena. After his arraignment on that charge, Saldivar was again arrested, and this time, his family home was searched. What should have been routine police work would later turn into an ordeal for Saldivar, who would remain in police custody from Monday until today, Wednesday, when he appeared in court and was released on bail.

6 charged in Libertad for violating COVID-19 Safety Regulation
Six men have been detained in Libertad, and charged with drinking in public and disobedience of the COVID-19 Safety Regulations, and a bar owner has been charged with failing to close a bar when ordered to do so. The men are Isaiah Sedacy, 26; Jose Velasquez, 42; Eugene Fuentes, 23, Jeremy Martinez, 31; and a minor 17. All the men are laborers of Libertad, while the bar owner, Jose Quintanilla, 55, is of Libertad.

Friend kills friend with pellet gun
A man who was reckless in handling a loaded pellet rifle caused the death of Rafael Sansores, 20, a laborer of the Rodney Moguel area of Corozal Town. The incident occurred at about 5:00 this evening. Reliable reports indicate that Sansores and his friend, Lloyd Usher, 21, and two others, all three of whom are of the White Cocal area of Corozal Town, were socializing at a house when they got a pellet rifle and began to shoot at birds.

Editorial: COVID-19 forces State of Emergency in Belize
The entire country of Belize was placed under a state of emergency on Wednesday, April 1, a measure the authorities believe is necessary at this time to help us defeat the disease called COVID-19, which is battering the health of people and the economies of countries across the globe. The state of emergency was set for 30 days, but it was mentioned that the duration could be reduced if our health authorities believe we have things (the disease) under control. God forbid, the state of emergency could last longer if more cases emerge, which could happen if all of us don’t follow the regimen prescribed by our health authorities, or if the measure wasn’t taken soon enough.

Amandala wants you to be safe when handling our newspaper
In this time of the COVID-19 pandemic, Amandala understands that some people may have concern about the safety process the primary handlers of our newspaper employ, before it reaches your hands. We have therefore implemented the necessary safety measures, as recommended by the Ministry of Health, at our production site to ensure that our product is safe when it reaches its end destination—our readers and advertisers’ hands.

Dr. Ron Hyde posts on fb about COVID-19
“Being infected with COVID-19 is a misfortune but no SHAME. For goodness sakes, ANYONE can be unlucky. But CONTROL requires complete transparency and vigilance. That is why all the famous people (in the USA) are openly sharing their diagnosis.” That bit is a response to my post on fb that our authorities are worried about the stigma surrounding COVID-19, but it isn’t practical in the fight against this disease. I also applauded American heroes who are making their diagnosis known.

Government’s assistance to persons unemployed due to COVID-19 crisis begins this week
The COVID-19 pandemic has hit world tourism extremely hard, and in Belize, where the economy is heavily dependent on cruise and overnight tourism, that sector of the economy suffered a devastating blow on Friday, March 13, when two cruise ship lines announced a one-month suspension of their calls to Belize. According to the figures mentioned by Dr. Carla Barnett, who is one of two “economic czars” with responsibility for the disbursement of government financial assistance to those affected by the resulting economic slowdown, around 20,000 Belizeans in the tourism industry find themselves suddenly unemployed.

Football flashback – Recalling some stars of the past, towards a Belize Football Hall of Fame
The country is on lock-down with a State of Emergency, including night-time curfew, with all sporting competition and activity on pause due to the silent battle against the COVID-19 Pandemic. It is surely a time for reflection and reminiscing, and some of that is being done in major publications as well as on our local social media, especially Facebook, where already there have sprung up debates on the relative rating of star players in years past.

Facebook and other social media have made experts of many people in many things. In the age of social media, we humans are looking for entertainment, more than information per se. At least, that’s my opinion. (Incidentally, I am not a participant in the social media world. I have made my living and raised my children through my income as a professional writer. Now then, on the matter of the coronavirus, which is threatening to send some of us crazy before it actually infects and kills us, they say the best advice is to stay home and wait out the COVID-19’s regime, which may be several months.

SOE — Selective Owners Exempted
The acronym “SOE” seems to no longer mean State of Emergency, but it apparently means “Selective Owners Exempted”! While I am being facetious, it is not without basis, since it appears that, under our State of Emergency regulations, as stated in Statutory Instrument No. 46 of 2020, the meaning of what is essential was seemingly bent and broken to allow certain, specific businesses to continue to generate revenue while we cope with the threats of COVID-19.

Jerry Lee Lewis’s woman
According to a bio I’m reading, Jerry Lee Lewis was a hot commodity, a musical star on the rise, on pace to supplant the Rock and Roll king, Elvis Presley, when at 23 he married his 13-year-old cousin and his flame burned down to ashes. Elvis, the bio said, had been drafted into the army, and Lewis was tagged as the white singer to fill the space. Before I go on, I’m no fan of the guy’s music. I looked at a list of his best songs and I don’t know one of them. I’m not saying that to hurt the gentleman’s feelings.

Courtship and young love in Toledo …
Lucille told me that that Saturday afternoon had been one of the most nerve-wracking in her life, from the time that Jewel had reached home until hours later when she and Jerome had walked hand in hand towards the house at dusk! It had soon dawned on her that, if Jerome had not come to see Jewel about work, it could only be for one other reason, and that he must be the person about whom she had told her father.

How the Rockefellers eliminated natural medicine to create the modern pharmaceutical industry
People these days see you as a weirdo if you talk about the healing properties of plants or any other holistic practice. Like everything else, there is a lot of politics and money behind the modern medical system. Around the 20th century, when the possibility of creating everything from oil was discovered, the Rockefeller lineage opted for obtaining pharmaceutical drugs from petrochemicals.

Appeal to Opposition Leader
Dear Editor, 2019 was a tough year for Belizean small businesses to survive. As small business owners, we have to feed our families with income from the business; hence, we have no choice but to make hard business decisions to be able to pay our recurrent bills, which include utility bills, water, light, rent and labor of employees. We barely survived in 2019, and now for 2020, January and February, the two toughest months of the year, harder measures had to be put in place.

Elimination should be the goal
Dear Editor, The lockdown of the entire society with restricted movement only slows down the spread, but it cannot stop SARS-Cov-2, the virus that causes COVID-19. Testing will be a more effective and data-driven way to stop the spread of COVID-19. Countries such as Israel and South Africa still have the spreading of COVID-19 and deaths, even though they have strict laws that quarantine their populations.

A tiny nation and a global crisis
Dear Editor, The world as we once knew it, say three months ago, is not the world we see today, which is now a much different place. This is largely because of the global pandemic COVID-19 that has been ravaging many countries all over the world. With the virus upon us, what is now apparent is that we, as a tiny nation, must get our gloves and prepare for the inevitable battle that lies ahead.

If this global crisis does not weaken Belize, it will make her stronger
Dear Editor, COVID-19 induced an interruption to global trade, because at least 40% of the world’s population is in some kind of lockdown and therefore not gainfully employed. The international Labor Organization (ILO) estimates that about 25 million additional people will be unemployed globally during this financial crisis. In 2008-2009, there were 22 million additional persons unemployed due to the crisis.

PAHO appeals for $95 million to help Latin America and the Caribbean cope with the COVID-19 pandemic
A donor appeal from the Pan American Health Organization (PAHO) is seeking $94.8 million to fund priority public health measures to help countries in Latin American and the Caribbean face the 2019 coronavirus disease pandemic (COVID-19).


Man murdered in the south
Less than 24 hours after the State of Emergency was enacted over the country of Belize, gun violence claimed another life. 27-year-old Ismael Jacobs was shot inside his home in Punta Gorda Town, Toledo District sometime before 7pm yesterday.

Persons who test negative are subject to another round of testing
The Ministry of Health has decided to test persons who have already been testing to ensure that the previous test was not a false negative. Doctor Marvin Manzanero explained this on today’s edition of Ask the Experts.

Police officer involved in traffic accident
A police officer is recovering after he was involved in a road traffic accident on the George Price Highway. Cayo Correspondent Fem Cruz has the details.

Ventilators to arrive in country next week
Doctor Manzanero also explained that the long awaited ventilators are still on their way. They are expected to arrive next week, but according to the doctor, the delay is not surprising.

No one allowed to be out during curfew hours
Curfew passes! Is it really a thing? And who are the persons that will get them? According to Attorney General Michael Peyrefitte there will be none; at least for the next week or so. In speaking on the issue, Peyrefitte made mention of a case just this morning where a person was complaining on social media of being approached by police as she went for her morning run at a quarter pass four.

Attorney General and Police Commissioner contradictory on the State of Emergency regulations
The contradiction in what the Attorney General noted on Facebook earlier today came in the Police Commissioner’s address also on Facebook. According to the Attorney General essential workers and their employers must make adjustments to their shifts so that they are not on the streets once the curfew sets in.

Belize Chinese Association donates over 1000 face masks
Today, the Belize Chinese Association (BCA) donated 1000 medical masks to the Karl Heusner Memorial Hospital, the Ministry of Health, and the Belize Police Department. In speaking with the President of BCA, Johnston Ou, he explained that the donation aims to assist those in the front line in the fight against COVID-19.

Oversight committee suspends boledo, lottery and games of chance
Up to last night Boledo buyers were in luck as the State of Emergency regulations had only required that the Boledo and lottery draws be done earlier than usual. This morning that changed and all games of chance were suspended for the next 30 days.

Identifying Counterfeit Belize Currency notes
The Central Bank of Belize and the Financial Intelligence Unit has issued an alert on the circulation of counterfeit Belize currency notes. They have issued a press release with guidelines that will allow the public to recognize counterfeit currency.

Public Service Union to respond to Government’s proposed budget cuts
The Public Service Union is preparing to submit a response to the Government of Belize on a list of cutbacks within the public service proposed by the Financial Secretary. The letter was sent earlier this week with four measures aimed at producing savings for the Government of Belize for the fiscal year 2020/2021.

Belize confirms 4th case of COVID-19
Director of Health Services, Dr.Marvin Manzanero, confirmed that the 4th infected person is a 55 year old man of San Ignacio Town. The patient is currently in isolation at the Western Regional Hospital. Reports are that he began with a fever and had gone to 2 private clinics for care. He was referred to the […]

Breaking Belize NewsPJ

LPG importers lower price of butane
The importers of Liquid Petroleum Gas (LPG) in Belize, Zeta, Tomza and BWEL informed today […]

Belize City Council extends prayers for colleague
The Belize City Council issued a statement earlier today extending prayers for an employee of […]

Minister of Health takes Covid-19 test as precautionary measure, remains in isolation
Minister of Health, Pablo Marin, has been tested for Covid-19. He posted to social media […]

CitCo revises operations hours for State of Emergency
Some of the Belize City Council’s operations remain open with effect from today after amendments to […]

Education Minister says students can learn from Covid-19
The views expressed in this article are those of the writer and not necessarily those of Breaking Belize […]

Prime Minister pleads with public to adhere to emergency measures
Following the announcement of Belize’s fourth case of COVID-19, Prime Minister Dean Barrow released a […]

COVID-19’s 4th case did business at San Ignacio Town Council this week
The fourth case of COVID-19 has been confirmed. He is a fifty-five-year-old man employed by […]

Belize Covid-19 website down due to increased traffic; maintenance currently being undertaken
The government of Belize announced earlier that its COVID-19 website is currently experiencing technical problems. […]

Ministry of Human Development closes office in Cayo
The Ministry of Human Development, Social Transformation and Poverty Alleviation advised the public that its […]

Belize’s borders closed to all
The Prime Minister of Belize has announced that the borders of Belize will be closed. […]

Commissioner of Police: 74 persons charged for breach of curfew regulations
The Commissioner of Police, Chester Williams informed today that 74 people countrywide were arrested and […]

Citizens can now apply for unemployment relief program
The Government of Belize announced the launch of the covid-19 eServices portal through which persons […]

Ministry of Health: 4th confirmed case of covid-19 is a San Ignacio resident
The enhanced surveillance system of the Ministry of Health has identified a fourth case of […]

Vybz Kartel loses murder appeal
Popular dancehall icon, Vybz Kartel, real name Adidja Palmer and known affectionately to his fans […]

Belize confirms 4th case of Covid-19
The Office of the Director of Health Services just confirmed that a 55 year old […]

Ismael Jacobs shot dead at home in Indian Village
Ismael Abel Jacobs, 27, was shot and killed at home last night sometime around 7:00 […]

Covid-19 unemployment relief program forms now available
Belizeans who lost their jobs and income due to the Covid-19 pandemic affecting the world […]


Bring a Taste of Elvi’s Kitchen Home
Though closed during the pandemic, you can bring a taste of Elvi’s Kitchen home by making their famous Coconut Shrimp Curry! Elvi’s Kitchen has been a must-visit favorite and five-star restaurant on Ambergris Caye for over 40 years. Renowned for its inviting atmosphere, sand floor, and authentic menu, Elvi’s Kitchen decided to close its doors for the protection of its staff and customers. Thousands of Belizeans are now quarantined given the national state of emergency, which has also brought along it’s own stressors. Many at home are now turning to cooking not only for sustenance, but for comfort and entertainment too.

How Coronavirus has affected the Caribbean and Latin America
The coronavirus pandemic has had widespread effects on travel to many countries. If you had plans to visit Latin America or the Caribbean, should you reconsider? You may be surprised to learn that once the crisis is over, countries like Belize remain an excellent destination. The virus has been drastically striking Latin America. Most of the cases have occurred in Brazil, which has overcrowded cities and high rates of poverty. Following it are Ecuador, Chile, Peru, Panama, Argentina, and Mexico. Many of these countries are instituting curfews, quarantines, and other measures.

International Sourcesizz

How Will the Coronavirus End? - The Atlantic
hree months ago, no one knew that SARS-CoV-2 existed. Now the virus has spread to almost every country, infecting at least 446,000 people whom we know about, and many more whom we do not. It has crashed economies and broken health-care systems, filled hospitals and emptied public spaces. It has separated people from their workplaces and their friends. It has disrupted modern society on a scale that most living people have never witnessed. Soon, most everyone in the United States will know someone who has been infected. Like World War II or the 9/11 attacks, this pandemic has already imprinted itself upon the nation’s psyche.

Minnesota food blogger stuck abroad in Belize
About a year ago, Brent Timm quit his job in sales to sample the cuisine of all 195 countries around the globe. After eating his way through Europe and Africa and video blogging his foray on social media, the former Oakdale resident and part-time actor arrived in Belize in mid-February hoping to cross Central America off his gastronomic tour.


  • 4th confirmed case of COVID-19, 4min.

  • WHO Daily Media briefing on COVID-19 with Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus and Kristalina Georgieva, 69min.

  • Stay Home, 1.5min. A sign of the times; Why social distancing is so important... The Streets of Caye Caulker have been quiet and empty for more than a week now....good job everyone! Please consider donating to our island wide “soup Kitchen” to help feed all the locals who are out of work. PayPal @ [email protected] Andy Horton. Thank you; our community goal is “No one needs to go hungry”.

  • Minister Figueroa put together a message for these times, 3min. We are in this fight against COVID-19 together, Cayo North.

  • Teapa cu excursia in Belize, 13min. Am ajuns in Harvest Caye, Belize o insula inchiriata de Norvegian Cruise. Nu am putut ancora la ponton asa ca au folosit barcile de salvare pentru a ne aduce la tarm.. Excursia dupa cum o sa vedeti scumpa si nu a oferit nimic pentru 100$ de persoana.

  • BEST OF BELIZE- I BROUGHT MY PARENTS TRAVELLING, 4min. At first, I wasn't sure that I wanted to post a travel video with this world crisis that's going on. But I understand that once this is over, many will want to travel to new places. Belize has it all! Belize's economy heavily relies on tourism. Because nobody can travel right now, they will need some extra support once this is over. My parents had never been travelling before and I genuinely think that everyone should, at least once in their life. So I booked tickets and brought them on a 10 day adventure through Belize. This video highlights some of the best moments.

  • Covid-19 Watch, 2hr. To empower you to be in the best position to avoid contracting the newest 'coronavirus', COVID-19 Watch will discuss it all; best practices, self isolation, quarantine and more!

  • Prime Minister Barrow Announces Closure of Borders to Nationals, 9min. Following the confirmation of a fourth case of COVID-19 in Belize, the Prime Minister Rt. Hon. Dean Barrow has announced the closure of borders to nationals.

  • A message from the U.S. Embassy Belize, 3min. A video message to U.S. citizens and Belizeans from U.S. Chargé d’Affaires, a.i. Keith Gilges. As a reminder, we encourage all U.S. Citizens in Belize to sign up for the Smart Traveler Enrollment Program (STEP) at so that we can contact you in an emergency.

  • Jet Surfing - Belize, 7min. Mike and Katy Enjoying Some Downtime Jet Surfing - Belize.

  • Birding with Victor in Belize, Premieres Apr 8, 2020, Educational Adventures with Jungle Jolly: Community Based Conservation in Maya Center and Cockscomb Basin Wildlife Sanctuary, Belize Kimo Jolly narrates.

  • Spear Fishing in Belize, 4min.

  • Deep Drop Large Groupers Placencia/Belize, 10min.

  • 2020 Belize Caye Caulker, 15min.

  • Acción Deportiva, 30min.

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