Today's Belize News: October 7, 2013

Posted By: Marty

Today's Belize News: October 7, 2013 - 10/07/13 11:11 AM


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The San Pedro Sun

Doctor Love: Progress
After establishing themselves, it seems that current residents are hellbent on preventing the progress and development of newcomers. Why?

Guest Editorial: Belizean Soul for Sale
Before I was even a real Belizean I did what too many Belizeans are expected to do every day; I tolerated corruption out of fear that I would only be making my life harder by doing the right thing. This latest scandal at Immigration has really gotten under my skin. For me it’s personal. Two years ago I was sworn in as a citizen of Belize. It was the culmination of three and a half years of dealing with the Immigration and Nationality Department. Three and a half years of being told that they were still “waiting for my file to come back” or that suddenly there was some new document was never required when my application was first received but now was the reason why the process had come to a halt for me. Meanwhile I would see news reports of fast tracked citizenship for political convenience. One well connected former politician even offered to “hook me up” in time to vote in a convention. I declined. I was determined to become a Belizean legitimately. It was frustrating, sometimes to the point of me seriously considering giving up and just remaining a permanent resident forever. But in my heart I already believed I was a Belizean and damn it I wanted the document to prove that.

Wolfe’s Woofers: Last Night’s Date
A young tourist girl goes on a date with a Belizean man...shenanigans ensue.

Misc Belizean Sources

This past week I saw electronic media postings by educators who complained that, and seemed to know why, students today are failures. As is usually the case, whenever anyone (parent or teacher) complains about students, whether today or a hundred years ago, the overwhelming reason always is: “they no longer (are allowed to) teach the way they used to”, in other words, “the best way to learn will always be the way that I learned”. How very egocentric. The postings also triggered many memories in me! That very old school line of thinking had originally inspired me to write my first article (Education in Belize) back in October 2011: Wake Up and Smell the Coffee. I wrote it in response to the community’s extremely negative response to my previous announcement, as Guidance Counselor, that San Pedro High School was replacing 2 weeks out-of-school suspension (vacation) with 2 weeks in-school suspension or ISS. My articles on Education are now regularly posted online by other media sources, and in my personal Blog. It’s time now for a 2 year anniversary follow-up.

Belize needs to make a stand on the reparations issue for its people
By Wellington C. Ramos. Since the discussion on “reparations” started I have not heard or seen nothing in the news as to what my country’s position is on this issue. In Belize most of our ethnic groups are victims of European slavery and genocide by the British, Spanish and other European crowns. The native Maya Indian people were tortured and their land was taken away by the British and Spanish. The Garifuna people were tortured by the British, land taken away and forcefully removed to Rotan, Honduras. The Creole people were brought from the continent of Africa by the British and were enslaved for many years. The East Indian people were forcefully removed by the British to Belize and other countries to provide labour for them in their new colonies.

Rotaract Art Competiton
The dates are a little off, but if you read the fine print, the Rotaract Club of San Ignacio is having an art competition for high school students in the theme of 'River Clean Up' as part of their upcoming River Clean Up Campaign which will be next Saturday at 8:00am along the Macal River. Great idea, Rotaract! "If you are a High School student, ages 12-18yrs of age in the twin towns of Santa Elena and San Ignacio you can join The River Clean- Up Fix-Up Art Contest. It is free to enter and prizes will be given to 1st, 2nd and 3rd place winners. This is linked to the Rotaract Club San Ignacio River Clean Up Campaign Project that will be held Saturday the 12th October 2013... NOTE: the deadline is the 10th October 2013. You must hand in your art work to your teacher or principal. Judging will take place the 11th October 2013 at the Welcome Centre at 7pm. Come out and see the display of beautiful art pieces and enjoy live entertainment. "

The People’s United Party (PUP) held a big rally on Sunday afternoon at the Falcon Field in San Ignacio town. Hundreds of supporters from the Cayo Central division attended as did constituents of Cayo Northeast. The rally was held to express dissatisfaction with the involvement of the Honorable the member for Cayo Northeast Mr. Elvin Penner in the current passport scandal. The PUP also used the rally to gather signatures from constituents of Cayo Northeast as the opposition sets to trigger a recall of the two-term area representative.


Golf On a Private Island in Belize: Caye Chapel
GingerScoop is back in action…and going big! Or maybe it’s not that expensive…golf just always seems like something for the rich to me. Here’s a day of golf just minutes from Ambergris Caye or Caye Caulker. I love all these posts about things I’ve never done! Caracol, ATM Cave and now golf. Yeehaw. It’s all yours Ginger… A common question we get living here in Belize – where do you golf? Caye Chapel, of course! An island dedicated just to 18 holes of peaceful, quiet fairways and greens? YES PLEASE! (From SanPedroScoop – I took this picture flying over Caye Chapel on Tropic Air last year. So you can get a sense of the whole thing…)

“Red Red Wine” in San Pedro, Ambergris Caye, Belize.
So what’s been going on since I last published an edition on Thursday morning ? If you read that edition you will recall that our stuff from England was not being released by EuroCaribe , the company used by our UK shipping agent to move our consignment from Miami to Belize City,until an invoice for the sum of BZ$ 334.51 was settled. Well, at around 11.30 hours last Thursday morning at last all became clear. An email fom Excess International Movers (the UK shipping company that we used) revealed that they had paid for all costs aside from those for Destination Terminal Handling, Customs Examination, Security and X-ray fees in Belize City. Our goods would be released when the sum of BZ$ 328.13 (this had been recalculated) had been paid. Knowing that we were going to Belize City later in the day to meet our friends from BATSUB I contacted EuroCaribe and told them that I would go to their offices later that day and pay the outstanding amount.

International Sources

Utah County rallies to help their own
The organization board decided to pick another project the following year. Some of the volunteers from Kenya mentioned Belize would be a good place to focus their next actions. After hosting a dinner and several events that raised over $46,000, they initiated the Sustain Belize Project. Going Beyond Borders proceeded to raise enough funds to refurbish a school in the city of Chunox, Belize. The organization also collected items for the community such as computers, clothing for women and children, soccer balls and team uniforms. At the beginning of 2013, the organization chose to provide assistance to an organization closer to their founders’ hometown of Provo. A place for Women and Children seeking to escape abuse, rape or domestic violence, the Board was immediately drawn to their cause.

Guatemala Sends Protest Note to OAS after Belizean Statements
Guatemalan Foreign Minister Fernando Carrera protested before the Organization of American States (OAS) over statements made at the U.N. by his counterpart from Belize, Wilfred Elrington, regarding the territorial dispute between both countries. The protest was included in a letter addressed to OAS Secretary General Jose Miguel Insulza yesterday, with a copy to Erlington and the Guatemala-Belize Group of Friendly Countries. In the letter, the Foreign Minister rejected suggestions about alleged intentions by Guatemala to forcefully assert its rights over the territory administered by Belize. Insulza has played the role of facilitator in the process followed by both countries to bring the territorial, insular and maritime dispute to the International Court of Justice.

Drug flight down in Colombia, 3 Americans killed
The twin-engine turboprop plane that crashed in northern Colombia on a U.S. counter-drug mission, killing three American contractors and a Panamanian aboard, had been tracking a suspected smuggling vessel over the western Caribbean when it lost radio contact, the U.S. military said. The two other Americans aboard the Dash 8 were seriously injured in Saturday's pre-dawn crash, the U.S. Southern Command said. Under contract with the U.S. Air Force, the plain was a "prospector" aircraft, equipped with surveillance equipment and employed to track speedboats and other vessels that smuggle cocaine north from Colombia, said Jody Draves, spokeswoman for the U.S.-sponsored multinational task force in Key West, Florida, known as JIATF-South that runs interdiction in region. Draves said the plane was operating in coordination with a Colombian surface vessel and had flown out of Panama. It was near that country's border that it crashed, near the city of Capurgana. The two injured Americans were rescued by Colombian soldiers and taken to a hospital in the capital, Bogota, Southcom said in a statement.

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