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Today's Belize News: July 15, 2020 #543521
07/15/20 06:36 AM
07/15/20 06:36 AM
Joined: Oct 1999
Posts: 68,075
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Marty Offline OP

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Marty  Offline OP


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

Tropic Air prepares for safe flights within Belize following opening of international airport
Tropic Air announced that it will assign separate aircrafts for its international and domestic passengers upon the re-opening of the PGIA on August 15th.

Yakarelis Hernandez is elected president of Rotaract Club of Ambergris Caye; new board of directors selected
Yakarelis Hernandez was sworn in as the new president of the Rotaract Club of Ambergris Caye. The handing over ceremony was held on Saturday, July 11th inside Enigma in downtown San Pedro, where the 2020-2021 Board of Directors was also sworn in. The event was marked with a reception, speeches and the presence of special invited guests including the newly installed president of the Rotary Club of Ambergris Caye, Gregorio Najarro.

University of Belize Faculty and Staff Union Receives Trade Union Certification
The University of Belize Faculty and Staff Union was today certified as the Bargaining Agent for employees of the (i) Full-time Faculty and Staff and (ii) Faculty and Staff on Temporary Assignment, where employment has been for two consecutive twelve-month contracts. Based on the results of a survey conducted on January 13th, 2020, the Union represents the interests of 237 employees.

Various Belizean Sources

mzz

Caye Caulker Soup Kitchen day Location
Wednesday, July 15th, Meal pick ups. Location: Belize Diving Services Ltd. Times: Village: 11:00am - 11:45am. Bahia: 11:45am -12:30pm.

Single-use plastic products no longer allowed in the country
This notice serves as a reminder to all importers, customs brokers, and members of the general public that the Environmental Protection (Pollution from Plastics) Regulations, 2020, came into force on January 15th, 2020. This legislation regulates the importation, manufacture, sale and possession of Restricted and Prohibited Products listed in the Schedules of the Regulations. Kindly be advised that there has been no adjustment to the date prohibiting the importation of products listed in Schedule II of the Regulations, which is April 15, 2020, and is now passed. Therefore, the importation of prohibited products is no longer permitted.

Wildtracks Urgent call for volunteers
We are looking for three to four people enthusiastically willing to volunteer their time over the next week to two weeks to help with the 24 hour care of the newest manatee calf at Wildtracks. It will involve being part of a team focused on the survival of these amazing endangered species, and will include in and out of water shifts and both day and night shifts as we work to stabilize the calf. Starting today! Accommodation and food are provided on site.

ORANGE WALK MAYOR WRITES: CLEAR AND PRESENT DANGER
Office of the Mayor: Clear and Present Danger. I would like to impress on residents of Orange Walk Town, and by extension the entire Orange Walk District, the real and present danger our communities face as COVID-19 continues to ravage our neighbors. Of late, the nation has seen a sudden surge in confirmed cases, and every one of them can be traced to persons entering the country. Seven of those cases have been identified in the Orange Walk District, resulting in a state of emergency being declared for San Felipe and Blue Creek.

Birds and Bugs Tour by Roni Martinez
Went to Caracol and MPR yesterday for a Birds and Bugs Tour. I might have hit the best time of the year for a few very interesting species.

"Housekeeping" webinar for the Tourism Gold Standard
Notice: The "Housekeeping" webinar for the Tourism Gold Standard program is scheduled for July 15, 2020. Register here: https://bit.ly/2W9TMl9

Jazz Festival Finals and Jam Session
Saturday July 18, 8pm Venue for this Jazz Festival has changed to the ticketing Booth area at Marion Jones.

Tropic Air Intends To Fly Separate International And Domestic Networks In August
With the resumption of service from the Belize International Airport (PGIA) on August 15, Tropic Air will operate dedicated aircraft from PGIA to San Pedro, Caye Caulker, Dangriga, Placencia (Riversdale), Punta Gorda, San Ignacio and return. These flights will not carry other domestic passengers. They will be solely for passengers whose origin or final destination is the PGIA. Domestic passengers will be carried across a separate parallel domestic network, with dedicated planes, between Belize City Municipal, Corozal, San Pedro, Caye Caulker, Dangriga, Placencia (Riversdale) and Punta Gorda. Flight times will be varied to avoid mixing domestic and international passengers in our terminals.

Brazilian Jujitsu Tournament in Orange Walk Town
Brazilian Jujitsu Tournament on Saturday, August 1st, 2020 at the Gala Lounge in Orange Walk Town. It will be streamed live on Facebook in HD. The athletes will be coming from various schools and disciplines from across the country.

Gathering Data for School Re-opening
A local company, Digital Learning & Pedagogical Solutions, is currently assisting several schools with a reopening strategy for the upcoming school year 2020-2021. However, they are in need of data to guide in the decision-making process to help schools and, more importantly, to help our children to stay safe during this pandemic. Kindly assist them with filling out this survey about your perspective about the new school year in Belize. It will only take a few minutes. We are all concerned about the safety and well-being of our children, parents, and school staff, and are extremely interested in your input. Kindly help us share this post so we can get as much of your valuable input as possible. Thank you for your participation.

Bbq Fundraiser for Wayne Eiley who is in need of a life saving surgery

COVID-19 UPDATE from Office of Director of Health Services
A further 88 samples were processed today, some of these included the initial set of samples picked up from contact tracing and the mapping exercise done over the weekend linked to the last 7 cases. These samples have returned negative, however, the further mapping of these cases is ongoing. We however have identified two other cases as reactive for SARS-CoV2: - A case in a returning male on the repatriation flight that arrived on Friday, July 10th. He is under quarantine at a hotel and is asymptomatic. - A second case in a male in his 50's who was seen as a patient at the San Ignacio Community Hospital over the weekend with gastrointestinal symptoms and a loss of sense of taste. The patient was discharged to self-isolate home. The patient has improved clinically and remains in isolation at home. The contact tracing for this last case is currently ongoing.

Approval for Extension of Time Frame to Implement the Pollution from Plastics Regulations
The Department of the Environment (DOE) has received Cabinet's endorsement for the extension of the timeframe for the implementation of Regulation 33 (1) (b), (c) and (d) of the Environmental Protection (Pollution from Plastics) Regulations, 2020. Due to preparations to address the COVID-I9 pandemic in March 2020, and subsequent National State of Emergency to address the health crisis caused by COVID- I 9 in April 2020, actions to implement the permitting and licensing systems required in the legislation was disrupted. As such, a transitional extension period is required to implement the above-mentioned sections (b), (c), and (d) of the Regulations.

Press Release for the renewal of Effluent Licence
The Department of the Environment (DOE) hereby reminds companies producing effluent that the renewal of Licences to Discharge Effluent Is due each year on April 1. A valid Licence to Discharge Effluent is required to comply with the Environmental Protection (Effluent Limitations) Regulations, Chapter 328 of the Subsidiary Laws of Belize, as amended in 2009, especially as it relates to Section 14. These regulations establish that it is illegal to dispose of effluent (wastewater) without a licence or written permission from the DOE.

to Belize Tourism Industry: Charting a Way Forward Forum Panel #2: Marketing in a Post- COVID world!
Meet our Panelists!

PPEs Distributed in Corozal
Today, Mayor Rigo Vellos, Deputy Mayor Hilberto Clarke and Councillors hosted a special ceremony at Town Hall to distribute Personal Protective Equipment (PPEs), including thermometers and over 3,000 face-masks, to representatives of schools and other key service-oriented organisations within Corozal Town. With schools scheduled to re-open on August 10th, under the instructions of the Ministry of Education, it is important for all educational institutions to be adequately-equipped to protect their students, teaching staff and administration. The unfair reality is, however, that for many of our schools, access to essential protective gear is very limited as resources are scarce. In fact, at some institutions principals and teachers have had to use their own personal resources to try to provide a safe environment for their students. The Council, therefore, saw it very fitting to provide the assistance to the schools within the municipality.

Covid-19 Watch - Forward, Stronger
Tourism has accounted for over 40% of our GDP. Suddenly, that pillar of our economy was disabled indefinitely and we still await its bounceback. That recovery requires the calculated and collective work of many and we dive into that discussion this Thursday, July 16th on Covid-19 Watch - Forward, Stronger! Tune in at 8:00 pm on Channel 7 or here on our Facebook page! https://www.facebook.com/colorblindbz/

SACD's Annual Summer Camp 2020!
SARTENEJA ALLIANCE FOR CONSERVATION & DEVELOPMENT - It's time once again for SACD's Annual Summer Camp 2020! This fun-filled day is open to 11 and 12 year old youths from Chunox, Copper Bank and Sarteneja and will include educational field trips and activities. To apply, please complete the online form found by following this link: https://forms.gle/YD8YiKskeTuFQGLD8 The deadline for applications in Friday 17th July. Don't be late, do not wait - apply today to avoid disappointment!

Caricom Youth Forum Today
Today is World Youth Skills Day, and Caricom is having a Youth Forum at noon.

Panthera and FCD sign agreement to monitor wildlife
Today Panthera and FCD signed an agreement with the aim of improving monitoring and management of terrestrial wildlife, primarily in the wider Chiquibul Forest. This agreement encompasses current areas of collaboration including trainings, workshops and research projects. Panthera is a non-profit organization devoted exclusively to the conservation of the world’s 40 wild cat species and their ecosystems, with a long history of jaguar conservation efforts in Belize and the Mesoamerican region

Channel 7

COVID Case Appears in Cayo
There are two more cases of COVID 19 to report tonight - and one of them is concerning.88 samples were tested today and two came back positive - one a repatriate who flew in last Friday, and, the other, a male in his 50's who showed up at the San Ignacio Community Hospital over the weekend with gastrointestinal symptoms and a loss of sense of taste.The Director of Health services says this patient was discharged to self-isolate home. He has improved clinically and remains in isolation at home. The DHS says the contact tracing for this last case is currently ongoing. This exercise will try and find out where he got it from since he came in from the community - which is a cause for concern in Cayo.

Compromising And Improvising On The Border With COVID
And that's where Cherisse Halsall went today - as close as she could to the villages of Blue Creek and San Felipe. Those remain under a state of emergency and a complete lockdown. It's a strict and tough precaution meant to contain the corona virus - after the last 7 cases appeared out of those northwestern communities which adjoin Mexico. But what does it mean for the residents of that village stuck and unable to access the outside world? Wella lot of compromising and a lot of improvising. Cherisse Halsall reports:

Vega Won’t Run In OW North
And while the north is going through quite a scare with this COVID situation - there is also political news coming out of Orange Walk. Three term area representative for Orange Walk, Gaspar Vega today announced that he will not seek re-election in Orange Walk North. In a letter to the Chairman, Vega says, quote, "I wish to inform the Party that I will not be seeking re-election as Area Representative for the Orange Walk North DivisionIt is my hope that the Party will be able to find a suitable candidate for the Party to continue serving the wonderful people of Orange Walk North." End quote.

The CCJ Says Caleny Has To Go Back To Trial
The Caribbean Court of Justice has delivered an important ruling, which has direct implications for verdicts coming out of trials without a jury. The Court has found that the Director of Public Prosecutions has a right to appeal any verdict coming from non-jury trials which the director believes is a miscarriage of justice.Since 2012, the Supreme Court has been conducting non-jury trials for offenses of murder and other charges of similar gravity. But, the case which brought this issue to the forefront is the acquittal of Calaney Flowers.

Port’s Industrial Action Countdown Continues
This afternoon, staff members from the Port of Belize and the stevedores which make up the Christian Workers Union were back conducting their lunch-break protest. They've been doing so since last week Wednesday, after invoking the 21-days' notice of intent to strike under the labor laws.This is the union's way of keeping the fire burning, and maintaining public pressure against the Port's management for what it calls an "arbitrary and unconscionable ten percent salaries reduction". As viewers are aware, this cut forms part of the Port management's plan to weather the economic crisis brought on by COVID-19.

Armed Robbery Of Delivery Truck
A delivery truck was robbed in Cayo this afternoon. Surveillance video obtained by PLUS TV from a camera outside a story in Santa Elena Town shows the robbery. A single gun man is seen approaching the cargo van - reportedly the property of Madisco.

Robberies in Independence
There was also an armed robbery in Independence village. It happened this morning when the owner of Myra Store, who is Myra Cruz a grocer who also provides money gram services was sitting in the store. That's when 3 masked dark-skinned men entered the store and pointed guns toward Cruz and a male customer. They then ordered them to the ground before binding their arms and feet with duct tape. The robbers ultimately made off with $3,000.00, a large garbage bag filled with Sodas, and a Samsung cellphone which they only got after punching the male customer in the head. And yesterday another robbery in the same area, this one at Anna's Store in the village.

Man Says Cop Punched Him For No Reason
Belize City resident Floyd Mcnab is alleging police brutality against an officer that he says punched him in the mouth. Mcnab says that he was taking an evening circle on his bike last Friday, accompanied by his young daughter, when police confronted him over a stick of weed that he'd stuck behind his ear. Here's his version of how the incident played out. "I decided to stop and take a trim and the officers just passed, and like they saw a little crowd and they swung back at the lane and they drove in the yard. The man came to me and told me to give him the weed. I took the weed from behind my ears and I give the man the weed and he punch me in my mouth. I ended up losing a tooth..."

Senate Report Will Be From The Majority
Last night, we told you about how the Senate was getting ready to finally table a report resulting from the 13-month-long Senate hearings on Immigration, which ended in December 2017.Viewers heard the Chairman of the Senate Special Select Committee, Senator Aldo Salazar, explained that he completed a final draft of the report some 5 months ago. He handed it over to the other senators who sat on the committee, and since then, several the social partner senators hadn't finish perusing it to indicate whether they were in full support of the findings or not.

Man in Police Custody Hung Himself From Sheet
Corozal Town resident Rayford Anderson died in police custody on Thursday night after an apparent suicide in his cell. It's a death that's prompted an internal investigation into whether an adequate level of care and attention was used in the treatment of Anderson who had been arrested on a report of domestic abuse. It's a death in custody - which is always an issue - but it's one that the head of national crimes investigation ACP Joseph Myvette says could hardly have been avoided - because he hung himself with a bed-sheet:

Drug Plane Forfeited, Officially
Last night, we shared the latest developments in the court cases between the police department and the 8 foreigners who were accused of landing that narco-jet on the Coastal Road last September. The cops caught them in the act of trying to use Belizean territory as a transshipment point of almost 3,000 pounds of cocaine. Well tonight, that aircraft and 2 vehicles in which some of the defendants were intercepted are now the property of the Government of Belize.All 8 defendants were taken back before Senior Magistrate Tricia Pitts-Anderson for the continuation of an application for forfeiture, which was raised by the police prosecutor.

For The Rest of July, You Have to Pay For NHI
If you depend on the national health insurance scheme for your healthcare, right abut now you're going through some serious changes. Like everything else funded by government, the program is seeing some serious cutbacks. And, today a notice was sent out saying that if you need healthcare for the rest of this month you'll have to pay for it. The release says all NHI referrals for the period of July 14 to the 31st will not be processed unless the client is prepared to pay for these services in full." End quote.

A Manatee Miracle
Jamal Galvez, the local manatee conservationist, and his team at Clearwater Marine Aquarium Research Institute are reporting tonight that they had to rescue a baby manatee which was seen in distress since Sunday.The calf was spotted in waters near to Old Belize, which located at mile 5 and a half on the Western Highway. As viewers are aware, manatees are an endangered species, and so, this calf's distress was particularly concerning for the member of the public who reported the incident to Galvez and his team.

PPE’s For Corozal Kids
There was a handing over ceremony at Corozal's town council this afternoon as Mayor Rigo Vellos presented schools and service-oriented institutions with much needed Personal Protective Equipment including 3,000 face masks and several thermometers.

Was Bradley Laughed Out Of UDP Race?
By now, the fate of the UDP's Wilfred Elrington is well known. He is walking away from electoral politics after he finished last in the polling at Sunday's leadership convention with only 10 votes. And, tonight, we also know about Gaspar Vega - who has also announced that he will not run again.Elrington made it clear throughout the campaign that he would not serve under either Patrick Faber or John Saldivar. And now Vega has made it clear he will not serve under Faber; he was a strong Saldivar ally.

Bradley Says Leaders Should Be Answerable
And Bradley also spoke on mass media. We asked him to comment on the fact that one of the candidates for leader doesn't like to give interviews. As is his practice, John Saldivar didn't speak to us during yesterday's convention, and didn't show up after for an exit interview either. Bradley - who has long been a champion of the media's right and duty to question public officials - wouldn't speak specifically about Saldivar's standoffish relationship with the media, but he did speak in general terms:

Hulse Says He’s No Puppet
Another important member of the senate we saw at Sunday's convention was leader of government business Godwin Hulse.He was there to vote as a UDP appointed member of parliament and the cabinet. And while Hulse is a UDP Minister, he has never been known as a party man, in fact, he earned his public bona-fides as an independent fighter for the public good. But, he has been a minister for over a decade now - and, publicly, his lot has been thrown in with the UDP government. On Sunday the press challenged him after he said he was nobody's puppet:...

Hulse Fine With Brads Contract
And the PUP claims that one factual evidence of UDP insider trading is the 10 year renewal of the Brad's Boledo contract. The PUP sent out a release saying, quote, "For the UDP to now, just weeks before General Elections, renew such a lucrative and one-sided contractis cause for real concern. At a time when there are unexpected cuts in education, which will directly impact students and the services offered by educational institutions, it is bizarre that this government continues to deal out these contracts." End quote. The press asked minister Hulse about the long circulated report that Bard's has a powerful silent partner:

"Two Monkey Di Play One Mouth Organ" In Port?
And in another bit of political sparring leftover from Sunday, we asked the two politicians representing the Port Loyola constituency who is really in charge of the 15 delegates from that division.

Willoughby’s Wardrobe, Ahem!
And while power sharing for the UDP in Port Loyola is one thing, we know that the Standard Bearer and the Area Rep surely don't shop at the same clothing store.They are both known for making bold fashion statements, but on Sunday, Willoughby was the cleanest of them all. He says he has to represent for a new generation:

Cops Appreciating Citizen
We'd advise you to expect to be stopped at a checkpoint tomorrow, but as long as your licenses and insurances are in line there's no need to be alarmed. The cops are planning to show you their appreciation - not to string you up. It's an initiative that, this year, is taking the place of the annual celebration of police week. Yesterday at a police press conference in Belmopan ACP Dezerie Magdaleno told us that the celebrations will be on throughout the day.

Cops Accused of Sex Assault In Independence
And while the police hope to make good with the community tomorrow - there's always some bad news to go around with the cops. A police officer is facing criminal charges in light of allegations of sexual misconduct with a female minor. Details are scarce but here's what police told us yesterday.

Plastics Ban Active
You'll remember a ton of buzz about the plastic ban's from earlier in the year. These regulations have come into effect on a strict timeline but gone largely unnoticed as COVID-19 has brought the nation to its knees. But tonight the Department of the environment is reminding all relevant parties that there has been no adjustment to the timeline on the plastic ban.

More on Justice Moore
Last night, we told you about the second unexplained adjournment of the sentencing hearing for convicted murderers William "Danny" Mason, Ashton Vanegas, Keiron Fernandez, Terrence Fernandez, and Ernest Castillo.Last week Thursday, the trial judge, Justice Antoinette Moore, was expected to begin the process of determining what sentence the 5 defendants would face, but the matter was adjourned. And as we told you, it was rescheduled for yesterday, but the court's staff informed the attorneys involved that it had been postponed for another week.

Channel 5

Gapi Vega Won’t Run for Re-election in 2020
Gapi Vega is out in Orange Walk North. The former Deputy prime Minister had been inactive and without a portfolio for some time but resurfaced when John Saldivar launched his [...]

Sedi Leaves Pickstock, No Successor Named As Yet
Another U.D.P. minister to exit the political stage is Pickstock Area Representative Wilfred ‘Sedi’ Elrington. He is demitting office at the end of his tenure and like Vega, he has [...]

Where Does Darrell Bradley Fit in the Future U.D.P.?
With desertions under this leadership come in, all eyes are on Patrick Faber.  Senate President Darrell Bradley is one of the names popping up to fill one of those empty [...]

Armed Thief Hits MADISCO Truck in Santa Elena
Robberies and other crimes continue to increase across the country; in broad daylight today, a Madisco delivery van was robbed. But is it an inside job? Surveillance camera images show [...]

C.C.J. Hands Down Ruling; Calaney Flowers Fights to Remain Free
The Caribbean Court of Justice has ruled that the Court of Appeal should hear an appeal filed by D.P.P. Cheryl-Lynn Vidal in respect to Calaney Flowers.  Flowers who was acquitted [...]

N.H.I.’s Facing Financial Problems; Support Services Caps Exhausted for July
There is bad news tonight for persons who rely on the National Health Insurance Programme. A notice was issued today and it says that all referrals have been exhausted for [...]

New Limits on International Credit Accounts
As the COVID-19 pandemic continues to wreck havoc on the economy and budget cuts are been imposed in most sectors, the foreign exchange crunch is not improving.  Businesses are being [...]

2 New COVID-19 Cases!
There are two new COVID-19 cases to report tonight. The first of these two cases is a repatriated Belizean. The patient is a male who arrived on a repatriation flight [...]

Edmond Castro Speaks on COVID-19 Food Assistance Programme
Two more cases of COVID-19 cases were recorded today. The concerning cases comes out of the Cayo District where an elderly man who found himself at the San Ignacio Community [...]

Caves Branch is Accepting Local Tourists Only; Doors Closed to International Visitors
Tourism stakeholders are counting down to the reopening of the P.G.I.A. on August fifteenth. But there are some in the tourism sector who don’t want the P.G.I.A. to reopen so [...]

Draft Senate Report on Immigration Scandal Under Review
A long-delayed draft senate report being compiled by Senator Aldo Salazar on the immigration scandal of 2013 is being reviewed by his peers in the upper house.  The scandal associated [...]

Officer to be Charged for Sexual Assault in Independence
A policeman attached to the Intermediate Southern Formation in Independence Village is expected to be charged for the sexual assault of a seventeen-year-old female minor. On July sixth, the minor [...]

Jose Abelardo Mai Comments on SOE in San Felipe, Blue Creek
San Felipe and Blue Creek Villages are under quarantine and will remain in that state for no less than a month since Statutory Instrument one hundred came into effect on [...]

Agriculture Sector Threatened by Swarm of Locusts
In the west, locusts ravaging farmlands in Peten, Guatemala are near the border. They are about seventy miles away and making their way across Central America.  In Guatemala, Prensa Libre [...]

“Everything that is green is at risk right now”
Organization for Plant and Animal Health has issued an alert to all member countries including Belize saying that the plague of the Central American locust has caused serious economic damage due [...]

CSEC Exams Underway
The annual Caribbean Secondary Education Certificate was pushed back as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic. Students across the region have been out of the classrooms and schools had to [...]

A Baby Manatee is Rescued!
On Monday, Manatee Conservationist Jamal Galves and a team of volunteers rescued an orphan manatee calf.  A concerned citizen spotted the calf in distress off the George Price Highway around [...]

Chester on Gang Culture: the Change Has to Start at Home
An anti-gang state of emergency was declared once again for hotspots in south side Belize City last week in an effort to contain crimes linked to gang activity. The legal [...]

Are Penalties Stiff Enough for Gangster?
Legislation had been amended so that charges could be levelled against residents who are identified as being members of a gang or being the leader of a gang; the latter [...]

B.P.D. Has Been Working to Keep Youth Away from Gang Activity
Commissioner of Police Chester Williams also says that the state of emergency can very well be extended past the month, but that will be determined prior to its expiration. He [...]

Amandala

Patrick by 19!
Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Education, Hon. Patrick Faber, is now the new leader of the United Democratic Party, winning a close election by beating his nearest rival, Hon. John Saldivar, by 19 votes – 286 to 267. The third contender for the post, Hon. Wilfred “Sedi” Elrington, received only 10 votes. The elections, conducted today at the Institute of Technical, Vocational and Educational Training (ITVET) compound on Freetown Road in Belize City, were determined by the 553 delegates who were in attendance at the convention, out of a reported 580 delegates who were slated to attend.

Sentencing of Danny Mason and co-defendants deferred until Friday
The sentencing of Danny Mason and his four co-defendants, who were all found guilty of murder for the beheading of Pastor Llewellyn Lucas on December 3, 2019, was to have occurred on Friday at the Belmopan Supreme Court. The sentencing was deferred until today, Monday, July 13, and now, it has been further deferred until Friday, July 17. On Friday, attorney Bryan Neal, the attorney for one of the convicted men, told the media that the sentencing was deferred due to an administrative technicality. Neal told the media that, among other matters, Danny Mason’s lawyer, Dexter Todd of Guyana, was not available.

New Lions Club president for Belize City
Dr. Sol Yam, of Belize City, who is presently the assistant headmaster of St John’s College, has become the 47th president of the Belize City Lions Club. She was named as the new president yesterday evening at the Lions Club building next to the Karl Heusner Memorial Hospital compound in Belize City. A new board of managers was also elected to work with her in support of her mission to further advance the objectives of the Lions Club. Yam said she aims to impact the lives of members of the community by addressing five key areas of concern: diabetes treatment/prevention, education, the environment, vision/eyesight and hunger. She and her organization will partner with other organizations to bring about changes and improvements in the lives of people in these areas.

Brother kills brother in Cowpen over cell phone
Antonio Pop, 18, a banana farm worker of Cowpen, was stabbed to death by his brother, Christopher Pop, 20, also a banana worker, over a missing cell phone belonging to Christopher. After stabbing his brother in their family’s house in Cowpen at about 7:00 yesterday evening, Christopher went into hiding, but police told us that he was captured this morning in the village without incident. He has been detained pending arraignment in the Independence Magistrate’s Court tomorrow, Monday.

COVID-19 rocks the North
On Thursday, July 9, concern swept through the country, particularly in the north, where three minors became the newest confirmed cases of COVID-19. All minors are members of the same family, who had recently been caught in the act of crossing the border illegally into Mexico, and they have been quarantined in Orange Walk. It was reported that the family made its way into Belize and settled in Blue Creek Village in the Orange Walk District before the authorities were able to apprehend them. During that time, they are said to have come in contact with several other family members before going into mandatory quarantine in Orange Walk Town.

Apolonio Kiow, 52, found guilty of murder
Apolonio Kiow, 52, a laborer of Corozal Town who has been on remand for the October 2017 murder of Gabriel Bochnia, 47, a Canadian businessman of Altamira, Corozal Town, was found guilty of murder yesterday in the Northern Session of the Supreme Court, which was convened in Orange Walk Town. Kiow was found guilty by Justice Herbert Lord, and sentencing has been deferred until September 28. The trial was held without a jury.

Corporal Eldon Arzu takes the Commissioner of Police to court
Corporal Eldon Arzu, who has been the president of the Belize Police Association for about 7 terms (14 years) and who this year again sought the post of president in elections held by the association but had been defeated, has taken the Commissioner of Police, Chester Williams, to court, blaming him for his losing the presidency of the Police Association. Arzu contends that because the election date in November was deferred by the Commissioner, other contenders entered the race, causing him to be soundly voted out.

First 27 of 99 gang members remanded for 1 month
A predawn operation was conducted in the Southside of Belize City, at about 3:00 Tuesday morning that marked the beginning of the State of Emergency designated for Belize City’s Southside. The operation concluded at about 11:30 a.m. that same Tuesday morning, and 99 gang members, including women, were rounded up. They were detained and today, 23 men and 4 women were remanded to prison for one month. Commissioner of Police Chester Williams said that the Anti-Gangs Task Force is reviewing the list of persons who were rounded up to identify persons on that list who can be released, because they are not participating in criminal activities and are currently abiding by the law and living peaceably within their community.

Toledo farmer remanded for murder of nephew
Anastacio Sirrick, 47, a farmer of San Pedro Colombia, Toledo District, who has been charged with the murder of Pedro Cus, 28, his nephew, was arraigned today in the Punta Gorda Magistrate’s Court. No plea was taken from him, and he was remanded until September 27. Cus, a farmer of San Pedro Colombia, was found dead, his head almost decapitated, under a mango tree behind his uncle’s house at about 10:30 Monday morning, July 6.

No witness statements, no charges for suspected killers, says Compol
Investigations into the murder of Raheem Faber, 23, a stevedore of Mayflower Street, who was shot and killed at about 11:00 last Friday night while he was standing with a friend of his at the corner of Ebony and Mayflower Street, and the murder of Raheem Myles, 23, a laborer of Los Lagos, Ladyville, Belize District, who was shot and killed last Saturday while he was standing with friends at the corner of Waight Street and Fabers Road, led to five men who were all rounded up in the State of Emergency predawn operation on Belize City’s Southside on Tuesday morning.

Editorial: NGOs join the call for GoB to cut the public sector
Many in Belize believe that one of the reasons that the present UDP government has not laid off any of the government’s employees or cut their salaries, even though the country is going through its worst economic period in many decades, is because in 1997 a UDP government retrenched 800 employees, and in 1998 the party was crushed at the polls, 26-3. The Belize Network of NGOs (BNN), however, under the leadership of the 13th senator, Mr. Osmany Salas, put together a team, the BNN Steering Committee (BNNSC), to study the present difficult economic situation in Belize that has been caused mostly by the COVID-19 pandemic, and after their deliberations they produced a document, “National Recovery Strategy”, which they presented to the National Oversight Committee on June 29.

TRAIL OF TEARS & SADNESS! BELIZE’S WWII BRITISH WEST INDIAN WORKERS! BRITISH HONDURAN MEN IN SERVICE TO QUEEN & COUNTRY!
Who knows — one of these men here in this photo of Belizean men off to work in Scotland during WWII may have been a lost and never found uncle of mine, Hugh Smith, from the southern district of Stann Creek that left the former British Honduras, now Belize, by ship to work as a forestry worker in the 1940s. My grandfather, Joseph “Jack” Smith, may have been one of my best history teachers to date, because his living with my mother, who was his caregiver until his death in Belize City, Belize, had transferred a body of knowledge to me that, despite all of my formal and advanced education that he had urged me to seek, cannot rival his amazing body of work, knowledge and wisdom. One of his sons,Hugh, whom he spoke about from the living room of our home so painfully and in tears, while he and my mother conversed, departed from Belize as a young man in his prime, never to be heard from and seen again.

Special Sitting of the Senate
A special sitting of the Senate is scheduled to take place on Wednesday, July 15, at 10:00 a.m. in the National Assembly chambers. During the meeting, two appointments will be voted upon — the appointment of a new Chairman of the Elections and Boundaries Commission and the appointment of the Chairperson for the Integrity Commission. The role of the new Elections and Boundaries chairman is slated to be filled by Estevan Perera, a Belizean attorney at the law firm of Estevan Perera and Company LLP. Perera has also served as a member on the Social Security Board and is a known supporter of the United Democratic Party.

NTUCB might join CWU protest
Recently, the National Trade Union Congress of Belize (NTUCB) was criticized by the president of the Christian Workers Union (CWU) for the NTUCB’s apparent lack of support of the efforts of the CWU to address the plight of the workers at the Port of Belize, who are facing a possible cut in their salaries. The workers at the Port are protesting the scheduled 10% salary cut by the Port of Belize which is being proposed as part of the Port’s austerity measures.

“Dalla van” increases fare to $2 without authority
The drivers of the popular “dalla van,” a taxi that mostly services the Belize City southside, and takes people from point A to point B along its routes for a fare of $1, are now charging $2 for the same ride without receiving authority from the Belize City Council to make such a price change. As a result of the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic on the economy, many members of the community are now unemployed, and cannot afford the increase. In the wake of complaints from the public, the City Council has restored the fare to $1.

Weekend Warriors Sunday Race results – July 12, 2020
Here are the results from the Weekend Warriors (WW) Sunday Race held yesterday. The “A/B” rode together from Maskall junction towards Altun Ha junction and turned back to go towards the Boom Road, to finish at Old Belize for 50 miles; whilst the “C” started at Maskall junction and went straight to Old Belize via the Boom Road for 40 miles. The races started at 8:15 a.m.

The incredible tragedy …
Jewel said that Jerome had patiently explained to their five children why he was interrupting his time with them for a few hours to perform this act of solidarity with not only a colleague, but someone whom they knew was very dear to him personally; and they all, except Belinda, agreed wholeheartedly that he should carry on with his act of generosity. Belinda who, from the exalted experience of four years, had confidently resolved to become a paediatric nurse, an ob/gyn specialist and a surgeon all in one, could not understand how someone could doubt their ability after preparing themselves so thoroughly for so long, asking Jerome pointedly if he had ever had such a feeling about himself?

I knew Godwin Hulse would have on a mask
I listened to the coverage of the UDP leadership convention on KREM News (on my phone) and on Love FM. Later in the day I heard Mr. Hulse giving this very interesting interview, so I glanced at the show on my phone. I had no doubt that he had on a mask. We wear a mask so that if we’re infected we don’t pass on our germs to other people. So, Blue Creek and San Felipe are now under SOE (state of emergency) — all because some of us won’t listen or don’t care. You see, what we do affects others. No person in this world is an island onto him/herself.

The Complexity of Race and Ethnicity in Belize and the Relevance of Reparations
Science proves that biologically and genetically all humans are the same. Race and ethnicity, therefore, are political and social constructs. Usually we subsume people into a racial group on the basis of their physical appearance and their original geographical location, so the Chinese and generally most Asians who have relatively yellow skin tones would be regarded as Mongolian, Europeans who are more light-skinned would be Caucasian or white, and Africans who are relatively much darker, despite their various colour gradations, would be perceived as Black.

Belizeans in El Salvador brought home, and Salvadorans in Belize returned to their country
Eighteen Belizeans stranded in El Salvador have been returned home and 32 Salvadorans stranded in Belize were returned to their country onboard the Salvador Air Transport plane that brought home the Belizeans. The arrival of the flight with the Belizeans and the subsequent departure of the Salvadorans occurred on Friday afternoon at the Philip Goldson International Airport in Ladyville, and it was made possible through collaboration between the International Organization of Migration (IOM) in Belize and in El Salvador, and the Government of Belize.

Farewell to my beloved mother, Lydia!
On Sunday night, July 5, 2020, my beloved mother, Lydia, passed away and returned to her Lord Most High. As she stayed a while with her family, surrounded by her dearest children before she departed this world, our love for her grew deeper still. We will always remember her pretty smile that is even more beautiful now in memory of her than it has ever been before. Because she has given this special gift of life to me and my brothers and sisters, there is nothing in this world that will make me wait until tomorrow to continue to pray for her blessed soul that has gone to rest.

Thousands more will lose their jobs by the end of 2021
Dear Editor, The International Monetary Fund (IMF) projects that Belize’s GDP will shrink by 1.2 % for 2020. Unemployment has skyrocketed. Belize has borrowed US$12 million for unemployment relief from the Inter-American Development Bank. As a Belizean worker, it is worrying that government’s reaction to the global economic crisis of 2020 has been slow and conventional. At the present rate of deterioration, thousands more will lose their jobs by the end of 2021.

BELIZE’S NATIONAL ANTHEM IS DISCRIMINATORY
Dear Editor: We are not “Sons of the Baymen’s Clan”. We are “Children of the Belizean Soil”— women and men, girls and boys, females and males, Belizeans all. The old Baymen Clan from the years 1763, 1779, 1783, and 1786 have disappeared from the earth. However, there are a few surnames that are around that have been here since the beginning of the 1800’s, such as Potts, McAulay, Wilson, Dawson, Young, Hyde, Wall, Bennett, Burnham, Craig, Armstrong, Douglas, McKenzie etc.

West Indies cricket’s ‘founding father’ Everton Weekes dies, aged 95
St. John’s (Antigua and Barbuda) (AFP), July 1, 2020– Legendary batsman Everton Weekes, the last of the famed West Indies ‘Three Ws’, died Wednesday at the age of 95 and was hailed as “a founding father” of the sport in the Caribbean. “Our hearts are heavy as we mourn the loss of an icon. A legend, our hero, Sir Everton Weekes,” tweeted Cricket West Indies.


Re: Today's Belize News: July 15, 2020 [Re: Marty] #543522
07/15/20 06:36 AM
07/15/20 06:36 AM
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The Reporter

Torrential rains overnight in the Toledo district
Have resulted in flooding of the Southern Highway in Jacinto village. The Barranco junction is reported to be under water and portions of the highway as impassable as of 6:00 a.m.

LOVE FM

Government’s perspective on feud with cane farmers and BSI/ASR
A few weeks ago we reported on the feud between the cane farmers and BSI/ASR. The farmers were complaining that the mill was taking no more cane and that they were experiencing losses. Meanwhile BSI/ASR explained that the mud in the cane was creating issues for them. Love News reached out to the Minister of Food and Agriculture Godwin Hulse who gave the government’s perspective.

Patrick Faber speaks on the recovery of the Economy
With Belize’s general elections looming, whoever is elected as the next Prime Minister, Patrick Faber or John Briceno, they will be faced with multiple challenges as the Covid-19 endemic has brought on severe financial struggles. While the People’s United Party says they will be releasing their plans soon for the recovery of the economy, Faber was on The Morning Show yesterday where he spoke on the fact that the next leader will have to make hard decisions to rebound the economy. One of the things Faber touched on was public service. While he says that he is not looking at retrenchment, he is looking at the possible transference to the private sector.

Edmund Zuniga transferred from Ministry of Immigration
There have been some changes in Minister Godwin Hulse portfolio. With the resignation of CEO Jose Alpuche from the Ministry of Food and Agriculture, CEO Edmund Zuniga has been transferred from the Ministry of Immigration. Our news team caught up with Minister Hulse who explained the changes.

Government has not received official report on chicken shortage
Recently, there were reports of a chicken shortage. We went looking for answers and found that for Quality Poultry Products there was no shortage. The Poultry Association did, however, confirm that there was a shortage. It turns out that the challenge was primarily for Caribbean Chicken. In recent weeks their coolers have been have filled and there is a notice in their Belize City store limiting customers on how much each person could purchase. Minister of Food and Agriculture weighed in on the matter.

Wilfred Sedi Elrington announces his exit from politics
Foreign Affairs Minister and Area Representative for the Pickstock Division, Wilfred Elrington has confirmed his exit from party politics. The 71-year-old politician has been serving in the Pickstock division as the duly elected representative since 2008. His decision to retire from politics comes on the heels of Sunday’s leadership convention that saw Patrick Faber sworn in as the UDP’s Party Elect. Aside from refusing to serve under Faber, Elrington is jumping ship indicating that things will not get better any time soon.

Attorney assists families who were affected by State of Emergency
Attorney and member of the Justice for Humans, Michelle Trapp, is reaching out to assist those who loved ones were detained under the State of Emergency. The organization is for those who need legal assistance but either cannot afford it or are unsure of how to start the process.

PBL threatens to terminate workers
The Port of Belize employees have been protesting during their lunch hour for the past ten days and there hasn’t been any progress in settling the impasse between the employees and the company. As a matter of fact, the President of the Christian Workers Union, Evan Mose Hyde, says things have gotten worse with PBL as they are exploring the idea of having employees terminated on the basis of redundancy.

Belize Bank credit Card limits lowered
The Belize Bank has issued an advisory to its credit card customers informing them that their limit has been lowered to one thousand US dollars. According to the bank, this adjustment is being made due to the shortage of US currency in the country

Gaspar Vega resigns from politics
It has only been forty eight hours since Patrick Faber was elected as the UDP’s Leader-Elect, and already he has seen the resignation of three elected officials. The most recent comes from Gaspar Vega.

Sister of alleged border jumper speaks out
On Friday 23-year-old Olga Galdamez was taken to court and denied bail after she was caught illegally crossing into Belize in April. Galdamez is a Guatemalan who was placed in quarantine but later escaped.

WATCH: Belmopan residents weigh in on the reopening of PGIA
The Philip Goldson International Airport (PGIA) is set to reopen in thirty-two days. In previous newscasts we have aired the views of several individuals and organizations who are opposing the decision to reopen.

Belize records 50 murder for first six months of 2020
Belize has recorded fifty murders for the first six months of 2020. The first murder for the year was a 16-year-old, Samantha Conorquie.

BTB explains Gold Standard Program for hotels
The Philip Goldson International Airport is set to reopen on August 15, and Belizeans are concerned over the protocols put in place to keep the country from importing more covid-19 cases. The Belize Tourism Board...

CCJ allows the DPP appeal to proceed on Calaney Flower’s case
The Caribbean Court of Justice (CCJ) delivered a judgement this afternoon on the murder case involving Calaney Flowers. Flowers was acquitted of the charge in the Supreme Court of Belize but the

Two more cases of COVID-19 detected; Belize now has 16 active cases
COVID-19 UPDATE A further 88 samples were processed today, some of these included the initial set of samples picked up from contact tracing and the mapping exercise done over the weekend linked to the last...

MOH and MOE working to reopening schools
In 28 days schools will be reopening their doors for students to come back in the classroom for face to face learning. We asked the Director of Health services if the schools will be prepared to open by that date.

Dean Barrow, on his way out of office
Prime Minister Dean Barrow is on the last leg of his political career. With elections looming for sometime in November, Barrow will be demitting office as a Parliamentarian and as the head of the United Democratic Party (UDP). Initially, the Prime Minister had indicated that once a new leader was elected he would be going into early retirement. With Covid-19 and other hiccups in his plans, the Prime Minister categorically stated that he will not be leaving office early.

Breaking Belize NewsPJ

Central American locusts arrive in Belize – crops and pastures may be devastated
Photo courtesy: Guatevision Around 6:30 pm today, several by-standers witnessed a swarm of locusts near […]

Belize confirms 2 new cases of COVID-19
The Ministry of Health informed today that 2 new cases of COVID-19 were detected. The […]

Gaspar Vega resigns two days after Patrick Faber won the UDP’s leadership convention
Our newsroom has confirmed that Gaspar Vega, area representative for the Orange Walk North electoral […]

United Kingdom scientists using llama blood to help develop COVID-19 vaccine
Scientists from the United Kingdom’s Rosalind Franklin Institute are using antibodies found in the blood […]

Central America COVID-19 toll reinforces Belize’s caution
The statistics suggest Belize should have a much higher toll of COVID-19 compared to its regional […]

Teacher’s Union conducting school preparedness survey
The Belize National Teachers Union (BNTU) is seeking feedback from its membership on the Ministry of […]

University of Belize braces for hard times – salary cuts of 25 to 5% being recommended to the Board
The University of Belize issued a memo last week sharing some of its proposed action […]

Belize to receive US $12.4 million from World Bank for COVID-19 impact
Belize will strengthen its response to the economic hardship caused by the COVID-19 pandemic with […]

Village councils asked to assist with enforcing emergency protocols
The National Association of Village Councils (NAVCO) has called on its membership to “take the […]

University of Belize Faculty and Staff Union receive Trade Union certification
On July 13, 2020, the University of Belize Faculty and Staff Union was certified as […]

Alex Balona-Real Representation in Cayo Central
The views expressed in this article are those of the writer and not necessarily those of Breaking Belize […]

Over 265 citizens to receive recognition certificates from Police Department
The Belize Police Department (BPD) is hosting a National Citizen’s Appreciation Day on July 15th, […]

No NHI for the rest of July
People who rely on National Health Insurance (NHI) to mitigate the cost of medical services […]

Central American locusts destroy crops in Peten
Prensa Libre Guatemala reported that the presence of locusts are putting at risk large numbers […]

Belize Water Services announces several interruptions
Belize Water Services Limited has announced the times and locations for several interruptions of service […]

Manatee Man, Jamal Galves, rescues baby manatee
Conservationist Jamal Galves rescued a baby manatee on Monday. Galves is an Associate Research Biologist […]

Weak tropical wave approaching
The latest weather report from the National Meteorological Service of Belize says that a weak tropical wave is […]

Flooding reported in the south
There are reports of massive flooding coming out of the Toledo district this morning. We […]

Blogs

The Many Faces of Belize - Part 3, THE STORY OF JULIO RUANO
The moment you meet Julio, you will be greeted with a warm smile and an attentive ear. His concern for you as a customer is instantly apparent as I discovered when I first met him at “The Boat Yard”. Yes, that’s the name of the business. At age 19, somewhere around 1998, Julio began working at Ramon’s Village as a Dive Master’s assistant. At that time on the tiny island, dive certification was not required to work in the industry but that changed within 6 months of his arriving. Julio was soon certified as an open water diver and continued his training all the way to Rescue Diver. During his time there he would learn to captain a boat and all the other duties common in the industry. The schedule was grueling, working seven days a week and diving 3 dives a day. After 3 years of continuous repetitive work, Julio began to burnout.

Shark Awareness Day: Top places to sight sharks in Belize
Today, July 14, we celebrate Shark Awareness Day! In recognition of this day, we’re highlighting the places in Belize to spot these beautiful creatures. Nurse Sharks at Shark Ray Alley – Hol Chan Marine Reserve, & Whale Sharks – Gladden Spit & Silk Cayes Marine Reserve.

International Sourcesizz

Hawaii Delays Plan To Reopen To Tourists
Hawaii delayed its plan to allow out-of-state visitors to return to the vacation hot spot by a month because of an increase in coronavirus cases in the state and on the U.S. mainland. In late June, the governor's office announced that travelers could visit Hawaii beginning Aug. 1, no quarantine required, by presenting a negative COVID-19 test taken within 72 hours of boarding a flight. Without one, passengers arriving from the mainland would have to strictly quarantine for 14 days, a policy in place since March that has scared away most tourists and wrecked Hawaii's tourism industry. The surge in cases has made it harder for people in many states to get tested. Hawaii Gov. David Ige said at a news conference late Monday that the travel program won't begin until Sept. 1, a decision he said was not made lightly.

World Bank Financing for Belize to Assist Over 13,000 Poor and Vulnerable Households in Response to COVID-19 Impacts
Belize will strengthen its response to the economic hardship caused by the COVID-19 pandemic with US$12.4 million from the World Bank. The funds will be used to provide social assistance to poor and vulnerable households impacted by the crisis. “The impact of the COVID-19 pandemic has led to serious economic and social challenges for Belize,” said Tahseen Sayed, World Bank Country Director for the Caribbean. “The World Bank mobilized a rapid response to support the country’s efforts in mitigating the impacts on the poor and most vulnerable populations.”

Videos

  • Thousands of locusts destroy crops in Las Cruces, Petén, and alarm farmers, 1min. Farmers in Belize are monitoring the situation in neighboring Guatemala and Mexico. Farmers in Las Cruces, Petén in Guatemala are concerned that their crops have already been invaded by thousands of Central American locusts, whose voracity puts at risk corn, bean, sugar cane, chili, tomato, citrus, banana, coconut, mango and grassland plantations. According to farmers in the area, since Friday, July 10, large numbers of insects have invaded cultivation fields, mainly corn and grasslands, putting the production of basic grains and livestock feed at risk, the two main residents' sources of income. The swam of locusts was recently spotted about seventy miles from the Western Border. We are told that locusts are also affecting fields in northern Honduras and southern Yucatan.

  • Nurse shark encounter by the shoreline during evening exercise., 1/2min.

  • A Piano solo from Jordan Can - 'Risk', 5min. Entry from BIJF's Online Competition. Make sure you attend the BIJF Concert on Saturday, July 18th at the Marion Jones Sporting Complex (Ticket booth area) to catch our winners perform!

  • Coping with COVID webinar, min. The free Coping with COVID webinar is Wednesday morning at 7am. Hey hey hey! What does your Wednesday morning look like? We welcome you to join the webinar at 7am Belize time! The discussion will be about the New Normal, Adapting Positively, What do you want decision makers to do, and How are young people contributing. Don’t miss out!

  • Coral Triangle Adventures Virtual Snorkeling Tour, 13min.

  • COVID - 19 Update - School Reopening, 46min. Senator Elena Smith - President, Belize National Teachers's Union

  • State of Emergency Report, 38min. Chester Williams - Commissioner of Police, Belize Police Department

  • Historical Lessons - When Leaderships Change, 47min. Carolyn Trench - Sandiford - Political Analyst

  • Join The Fun Dancing Punta: Kadisha (Belize), 1.5min.

  • This is Belize | La Ruta Maya Belize River Challenge 2020 Day 3 | Canoe Race, Supa G and Party Vibe, 12.5min. Today, the Belikin La Ruta Maya is considered one of the longest canoe races in Central America that brings together professional and amateur paddlers from all over the world who take on the four day grueling challenge of paddling 175 miles of the Belize Old River against rapids and winds.

  • September 10 Carnival Parade Punta Gorda Belize, 14min.

  • Grand Caribe Belize Short Video on Four Rules of Release, 2min.

  • Grand Caribe Belize, Deep Sea Fishing Tournament 2020 Rules, 19min.


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