Today's Belize News: October 20, 2018 - 10/20/18 11:43 AM
Last night's TV news on Channel 7, Channel 5, LOVETV, PGTV, and CTV 3. Also with the most recent Open Your Eyes, and other specials
2018 Copa San Pedro playoffs begin!
The regular season of 2018 Copa San Pedro came to an end this weekend at the Ambergris Stadium in San Pedro Town. The first round of matches were played on Thursday, October 11th starting at 7PM with Vince Assassins dominating with 10-2 over Young Strikers. In the next match, G-Strikers won 4-1 against Peacemaker. The following day, San Mateo F.C won Genesis F.C 3-2, followed by Legends F.C winning Los Catrachos F.C 2-1. The last game of regular season of Copa San Pedro 2018 was held on Sunday, October 14th with Boca Bombers winning 5-2 over Sandy Point. The first quarterfinals in the male category culminate on Sunday, October 21st starting at 5PM with Vince Assassins going against Talal F.C, followed by Boca Bombers versus San Mateo F.C. Everyone is invited to come out to the Ambergris Stadium and enjoy a weekend of football action. Food and drinks will be on sale during all games.
Managed Access Program continues to promote good fishing
Over the past years Belize’s marine resources have faced several challenges, including the dwindling of fish stock. Despite many Belizean fishermen practicing sustainable fishing methods, there are still concerns. As such, in 2011 the Managed Access (MA) program was piloted at Glover’s Reef Marine Reserve (GRMR) by Wildlife Conservation Society (WCS) in partnership with the Belize Fisheries Department and the Environmental Defense Fund (EDF) to change the ‘open access’ fishing paradigm in Belize to one of limited entry. The program aims to end open access to resources across Belize’s marine ecosystems by licensed commercial fishermen. Open access fishing allows licensed fishermen to harvest marine species (that are not protected by law) unrestrictedly, and this has resulted in overfishing, causing populations of certain species to decline over the years.
Sustainable & Child-Friendly Municipality Initiative Mayors Retreat
The Ministry of Labour, Local Government and Rural Development in collaboration with the United Nations International Children’s Fund (UNICEF) and the National Committee for Families and Children (NCFC) hosted a two-day event, October 11th & 12th 2018, for mayors and councillors with responsibility for the implementation of the Sustainable & Child-Friendly Municipality Initiative (SCFMI).
SPTC Addresses Noise Pollution
In accordance with the Intoxicating Liquor Licensing Act Chapter 150, Revised Edition 2011, of the substantive laws of Belize, the San Pedro Town Council (SPTC) along with the San Pedro Liquor Licensing Board (SPLLB) hereby announces to the general public and all Liquor License Holders that effective Thursday, November 1, 2018, in an effort to reducing noise pollution from various establishments and maintaining the Town of San Pedro as a Child Friendly Municipality, open bars will no longer be granted a weekly special license/extension.
Misc Belizean Sources
Wine de Vine Halloween for Wine Lovers
One of the first Halloween events to be announced in San Pedro! Wine de Vine invites to a Halloween for Wine lovers. Get those costumes ready!
World Food Day 2018
Today, the Ministry of Agriculture, in collaboration with Julian Cho Technical High School and the Food and Agriculture Organization, is hosting its annual World Food Day event, at Julian Cho Technical High School in the Toledo District. This year’s World Food Day theme is celebrated under “Our Actions are Our Future: A #ZeroHunger World by 2030 is Possible,” which underscores the urgent need to step up collective efforts to reach the Zero Hunger goal.
Orlando (Mambo) Williams passes away
The Belize Territorial Volunteers(BTV) extends its deepest sympathies to the family of Orlando (Mambo) Williams who passed away yesterday. Orlando was a trained surveyor, he made several trips to the border with the BTV to ensure that we did not cross the border line. You will be sadly missed by all of us at the BTV and going to the border without you will never be the same! RIP Mambo
Two power outages 6:00am to 6:15am and 4:45pm to 5:00pm on Sunday, October 21 to affect entire Orange Walk and Corozal Districts
BEL to facilitate maintenance works by Cenace at Xul-Ha, Mexico.
Women and Girls Self-Defense Training in Corozal with Renee Wentz
Happening tomorrow, Saturday 19th. Some openings still remain. 30 women already registered. Sign-up by in-boxing or emailing her. Thanks!
Segovia Brothers Circus Coming to Cayo
The Segovia Brothers Circus will be in Cayo for 10 days starting tomorrow. They'll be set up at the Macal River Park. Tickets are $10. "For the first time in SAN IGNACIO, Surprising Circus Brothers Segovia. with the most spectacular acts, the death balloon, trapeze artists, acrobats, the funniest clowns and all the wonderful world of the circus. 10 days only great premiere this Saturday 8pm. installed at the macal park. Its an amazing experience that you have to come to see. Circus Brothers Segovia. General fee: $10.00"
Belize City House of Culture and the Downtown Rejuvenation Project zone two eliminations
Today, the Belize City House of Culture and the Downtown Rejuvenation Project completed its zone two eliminations, We now have the eight schools that will be moving on to our Finals on Friday, 26th October, at the Bliss starting at 9:00 a.m.. Yesterday, seven schools participated in zone one and eight. in zone two today. Here are the results: This year all schools were allowed to register two candidates to participate and this is why Bernice Yorke will have two candidates in the final. Both of their candidates performed well their zone competition. We wish all of the candidates good luck as they will compete for approximately $18,000.00 in prizes. Catch the competition live on Love Fm as history will come alive!
International Archaeology Day at the Corozal House of Culture (NICH)
An exhibit by the Institute of Archaeology.
José Rubén Sánchez Curiel from Cuba working in the Maya Golden Landscape
We're excited to have José Rubén Sánchez Curiel from Cuba on a follow-up visit to strengthen our work in agroecology within the Maya Golden Landscape. Professor Ruben, as farmers now know him, is a plant pathologist and seed specialist from the Universidad Pinar del Rio, Cuba. Agroecology looks at understanding and linking climate smart farming practices with the protection of nature. He returns to Belize due to heavy demand for his expertise. He has, already, visited Jalacte Roman Catholic Primary School to look at their vegetable garden project and provided recommendations. His return is also being supported by the Embassy of Cuba to Belize and GEF Small Grants Programme.
BTIA Halloween Mixer
The Cayo BTIA are having a Halloween mixer on Thursday, October 25th, at the Cahal Pech Village Resort. The membership meeting goes from 5:00pm to 6:00, and the event continues until 10:00. There will be food and entertainment. "BOO! Please do join us for a FUN NIGHT of Entertainment, Food, Costumes and More! We'll have a brief membership meeting between 5pm - 6pm and we encourage all of you to come out to learn about all the fantastic things we have in store for West Fest 2019 and your memberships. We encourage those of you who aren't current members, to also sign up to stay up to date with all our efforts and activities as well as benefit from the bountiful perks of being a part of BTIA Cayo Chapter. Wear your costumes!!! We'll be doing giveaways for the best costumes of the night. See you there!"
Out and about in the South!
Chargé d'Affaires, a.i. Keith Gilges and a team from the Embassy headed south this week to meet with contacts in Stann Creek and Toledo districts. It was an excellent opportunity to engage with civic leaders and entrepreneurs and learn more about their work.
Deputy Prime Minister, Hon. Patrick Faber and Ms. Sapna Budhrani, President of NICH, Bestow Title of Artist Emeritus and Awards to Three Outstanding Belizean Artists
Honourable Deputy Prime Minister Patrick Faber, Minister with the portfolio of Education, Youth, Sports and Culture along with Ms. Sapna Budhrani, President of the National Institute of Culture and History (NICH) today presented Mr. Florencio Mes, Ms. Myrna Manzanares and Gerald “Lord” Rhaburn with the title of Artist Emeritus at the Museum of Belize. Ms. Budhrani, President of NICH, welcomed all to the ceremony sharing that, “Belize is blessed with diversity, nature, ethnicities and cultural heroes; living, inspiring individuals who have made us dance, laugh and appreciate.” She recounted her personal experiences of listening to Mr. Mes’s harp music and how the soothing music helped to strengthen her concentration and focus, her appreciation of Ms. Manzanares’ writings of the Belizean Creole Culture that are shared locally and internationally...
Join the Ya'axché Conservation Trust team as Research Assistant!
We are securing the services of a Belizean Research Assistant – with a strong interest in conservation science – to contribute to our research and monitoring work in the Toledo District. He/she will be assisting the Science Director in ensuring the success of science and research activities, particularly focused on vegetation and mammal monitoring.
Maya Mountain North Forest Reserve management plan
Consultants, 12 more days left to submit your bid to develop a management plan for Maya Mountain North Forest Reserve. Ya’axché is currently implementing a project entitled “Innovative Protected Areas Management in the Maya Mountain North Forest Reserve of Southern Belize through the promotion of climate-smart agriculture,” with funding support from GIZ-CATS.
Felina James Found Dead; Police Say She Was Chopped To Death
Last night Felina James' family got the worst news- her decomposed body was found on the coastal road. Her throat had been slashed and the 36 year old mother of two was left in the bushes to rot. I spoke to her distraught aunt about her niece's brutal murder. Here is that story. Voice of: Lydia Bolon, Aunt: "You got what you wanted, you killed my niece, you killed her! I don't care who you are or where you are or what you are doing right now, God is above." Courtney Weatherburne, reporting: A direct message to Felina James' killer - her family overcome by anger and anguish.
Guilty Verdicts for the Double Murder of Richard and Maria Stuart
3 months ago, Milton Maza and Eli Avila Lopez went on trial for the October 2010 double murders of attorney Richard Stuart, and his wife, Maria. These men waited for over 7 and a half years for their day in court, and they stood trial without jury in front of Justice Collin Williams. The judge heard the graphic details of the vicious attack that the couple suffered in their home in West Landivar, Belize City. The killers ambushed the coupe they returned home from a night out. A post-mortem found that they were both stabbed 25 times each, while their children were asleep in their bedrooms.
No Fatalities In Head-on Collision On Stann Creek Valley Road
Fortunately there were no fatalities in a terrible accident this morning. It happened around 7:15 between miles 2 and 3 on the Stann Creek Valley Road. 42 year old Karima Martinez was driving a white Ford Escape with her daughter 17 year old Kelsie Martinez. They were driving towards Dangriga. 70 year old Canadian national Synder Leander was heading towards Belmopan in her Toyota Hilux with her passenger 56 year old Ivan Jones - the two vehicles collided head on. It was a massive impact but everyone survived. In the video seen here, you can see the aftermath, as concerned residents ran to assist the accident victims. Police say Jones was treated and released.
Central Americans Refused Entry Into Belize
Last night we told you about the five buses with Central Americans that was being refused entry at the Western border. Well, they were allowed into the country later last night - after Immigration authorities satisfied themselves that this was not one of the feared Honduran caravan of asylum seekers that's been making international headlines. The Mennonite Community sent a letter verifying that the Hondurans and Salvadorans on the buses are a Church group, and that they have nothing to do with the Caravan.
DPM Faber Comments On Hardship List Delays
Last night, we told you about the press release from the Ministry of Education noting that they still have not been able to finalize the list of schools countrywide where teachers will be paid their hardship allowance. You'll know by now that this stipend of between $100 to $200 is paid to teachers who have to slog through rough terrain, or those who traverse long distances to get to work. The BNTU complained that the Ministry's revised list for this year disenfranchised some teachers because either their schools were cut from the list, or their allowance was cut because the Ministry's officials assessed that their hardship has lessened over the years.
DPM Wants Sacred Heart Primary Students Back In School
From there, the press asked the Deputy PM to comment on the sewage problem that has caused interruption of classes at the Sacred Heart Primary School in Dangriga. You'll remember how the public health department shut the school down due to the unsanitary conditions for the children. They've missed several days because the infrastructure for their bathrooms have failed, and there is need to make urgent repairs. Today, DPM Faber called on the management of the school to do their part and get the situation rectified so that the children can get back to learning:
Hon. Faber: Collet Voters Will Get ICJ Education
One final topic that the press questioned Faber on is the ICJ public education campaign. In a little over 6 months from now, Belizeans will be called upon to decided whether or not they agree to send Guatemala's territorial claim over our country to the International Court of Justice for adjudication. The media wondered what he as the Area Representative for the Collet Division is doing to educate his constituents on this very important issue, and here's what he had to say:
Mexican Law Expert Discusses Belize’s Prospects At ICJ
And while Faber is personally in favour of going to the ICJ - that's the consensus position of International law experts. A Belize media delegation spoke to one of them today in Mexico City. Professor Carlos Bernal was the lead advisor for Mexico the only time it went to the ICJ - in a legal dispute with the US - which it won. He also studied international law at Hague academy in the Netherlands - where the court sits. So, he's steeped in the culture and jurisprudence of the court. Today, at the Mexican Autonomous University in Mexico City, he spoke to a number of Belizean journalists. He says he feels Belize has a good chance at the ICJ:...
So, What If Guatemala Refuses To Accept An ICJ Decision?
But what if it is settled and, let's say, Belize wins, but then, the Guatemalans still don't honour the judgement? We asked the Professor about that possibility:.. Carlos Bernal, Professor of International Law - ITAM: "The court has a judgement and it has no appeal. It's final. It's totally binding and totally no appeal and therefore both countries will be oblige by the judgement." Reporter: "Obliged, but what happens on the ground? They may be obliged internationally, but the court cannot jail a sovereign nation. Lock up the president or the prime minister. So then how is this enforced and actualized?" Carlos Bernal, Professor of International Law - ITAM: "You said it perfectly well. The International Court of Justice has no authority, has no mandate, has no police. So if one of the countries does not comply with the judgement, it has no way to enforced it otherwise."
That Mexican Case Decided By The ICJ…
That's it, indeed. And Bernal knows this full well because - as we said - he was the lead legal advisor to Mexico when they challenged the US at the ICJ. It's known as the Avena Case - where in 2004, Mexico said that the US had broken international law by not notifying the Mexican Embassy when Mexican citizens were arrested and imprisoned for crimes in the United States. 52 of these Mexicans were sentenced to death in Texas - again without any call to the Embassy. So Mexico took it to the ICJ - and they won, but listen to what happened after that:...
Another Woman Missing; Her Baby is With Her
Another woman is missing, this time along with her baby, East Collet Canal business owner Emperatriz Portillo reported that on Tuesday morning around 7:00 a.m., her friend, only known to her as Ruby Petino left her home along with her 1-year 8-month old baby. She was heading to her workplace at mile 8 on the George Price Highway. She has not returned since. If anyone see this woman and a young baby, please contact the police.
City Cops Make Major Weed and Pills Bust
Police made two major drug busts yesterday. In the city on Albert Street, police searched Andrew Hepburn's house and found 10 pounds of weed, 3 ounces of cocaine, 6 ounces of blue pills, and $12,580, both in Belize and US dollars. Looks like a major illicit operation, and police arrested and charged Andrew Hepburn, Shane Flowers, Anthony Gilharry and Lisha Ramirez for possession of a controlled drugs with intent to supply. Hepburn was also charged for drug trafficking.
Corozal Cops Busted Marijuana Smugglers
The other big bust was in Corozal. Police were on mobile patrol on the Patchakan road when they spotted a suspicious Black Toyota 4 runner. A man in the vehicle threw something out of the window when he saw the police. The police pulled up to the vehicle and took everyone out. Police found the grey knapsack one of the men had thrown out. 11 pounds of weed stacked in 5 parcels were stuffed inside. Deon Arnold, Ian Young and Alex Lewis were all charged with drug trafficking.
If you're a follower of Belizean music and/or Belizean literature, you'll definitely recognize the names of Florencio Mes, Myrna Manzanarez and Gerald "Lord" Rhaburn. These three distinguished Belizean artists have left an indelible mark on local culture, and today, the Deputy Prime Minister, Patrick Faber, and NICH President Sapnah Budrani, held an award ceremony for them at the Museum of Belize. It's called the "Artist Emeritus" award, and today, these 3 artists were the first to be recognized by the Government. Deputy Prime Minister Patrick Faber described to the press why they decided to honor them today:
The Sandy Bradshaw Concert
Another group of Belizean musicians will be performing tomorrow night at the Bliss Institute for the 7th Annual Sandy Bradshaw Concert. Coordinator Sandy Bradshaw and her team have created a line-up of entertainment for music loves across the spectrum of different musical genres. But, it's not only entertainment for the sake of it. The concert is known to send messages touching on the different social ills that affect the society, and the hot-button issue right now is child molestation and rape. She stopped by our office today to tell us more about the event:
Burglary of At PG Church?
All churches have an open door policy, everyone is welcomed to worship, but some people just take it too far. Yesterday, someone burglarized the Saint Peter Claver Parish in Punta Gorda. The thief or thieves broke the tabernacle and stole the chalice from which the communion host is reserved. The American Priest, Penn Dawson said he had mass yesterday morning and left the parish open as he normally does. But when he returned at 2:00 in the afternoon, the gold chalice was gone. But police have recovered it.
Missing Mother of 2 Found Dead: Felina James was Chopped to Death
After being missing for seven days, thirty-six-year-old Felina James was found murdered and her body dumped along the Coastal Road. Her remains were discovered by a caretaker of a nearby [...]
Guilty of Murder – Two Men are Convicted of Killing Richard and Maria Stuart
The families of Richard and Maria Stuart exited the court today in an emotional state. Ten years ago to date, the young couple was brutally murdered at their house in [...]
4 Persons Survive Head-on Collision
Four persons are lucky to be alive tonight after they were involved in a head-on collision this morning. It happened at around seven o’clock between miles two and three of [...]
C.A. Nationals cleared to enter Belize at Western Border
There are more details tonight on a number of persons who were held at the western border on Thursday for hours. About two hundred Guatemalan nationals arrived at the border [...]
Minister of Education weighs in on shut down of Sacred Heart School
A sewerage problem at the Sacred Heart Primary School in Dangriga has caused the school to shut down and students have been away from classes for eight days. The school’s [...]
Education Minister Slams B.N.T.U. over Hardship Allowance
Minister, Patrick Faber also had some strong words for the Belize National Teachers Union and its president, Senator Elena Smith. Minister Faber was asked for an update regarding delayed meetings [...]
Education Minister Speaks on Proposal 22
The B.N.T.U. is also upset that there has been no progress regarding Proposal Twenty-Two which covers a number of issues including a proposal to have government pay one hundred percent [...]
Corozal Police Find Firearm
Moving on the crime, police in Corozal Town found a rusty nine millimeter pistol with no serial number on Thursday afternoon at Dominguez Layout. Since no one was in the [...]
3 Men Charged for Drug Trafficking
Three men have been charged for allegedly trafficking five thousand, four hundred and thirty-five grams of marijuana. They are twenty-nine year old Deon Arnold, nineteen-year-old Ian Young, and twenty-nine-year-old Alex [...]
Renowned Law Professor Carlos Bernal Discusses the I.C.J. Option
A group of reporters from various media houses are tonight in Mexico City in anticipation of a visit to the International Court of Justice in the Hague sometime in November. [...]
Litigation Risk: What’s at Stake for Belize?
Litigation risk is always a consideration when legal matters go before the courts. In this case, the resolution of the territorial dispute between both countries also comes with the possibility [...]
Minister Patrick Faber is Pro-I.C.J.
Earlier today the Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Education, Patrick Faber, also expressed his view on the I.C.J. He says persons who are opposed in taking Guatemala’s claim to [...]
Shark Fishers Forum held in Belize City
A National Shark Fishers Forum was held today in Belize City. The event brought together more than forty shark fishers to raise awareness of shark regulations, best fishing practices, and [...]
Tourism Stakeholders Meet to Discuss Wellness & Rejuvenation
A gathering of industry stakeholders from across the travel and leisure sectors met today at the annual B.T.B. Industry Presentation. Every year, the Belize Tourism Board convenes a symposium during [...]
Tourism Industry Summit Brings Everyone Onboard
According to Karen Pike, Director of Marketing and Industry Relations, invitations were extended to representatives from various organizations across the region. Karen Pike, Director of Marketing and Industry Relations, [...]
NICH bestows first ever Artist Emeritus titles
Three Belizean artists were recognized with the first ever Artist Emeritus title in Belize. National Institute of Culture and History says that the initiative recognizes the three trailblazers for their [...]
American-Belizean Determined to get education despite genetic disorder
And to end the news tonight, we have an inspirational story about American-Belizean, eleven-year-old Max Castillo who is not letting anything stop him from receiving a proper education. For Max, [...]
Body of Missing Woman Found
36-year-old Felina James had last been seen alive on the 11th of October. That’s when she left her two sons with a babysitter. She told the sitter she would return the following day. The case took a turn for the worst when the woman’s identification cards were found by sanitation engineers. Sadly, James’ body was …
Eli Lopez Avila and Milton Maza found guilty of double murder
Guilty!… That’s the verdict that Justice Colin Williams handed down to Eli Lopez Avila and Milton Maza who were on trial for the murder of Richard Stuart and his wife, Maria. In 2010, the Stuarts were viciously stabbed to death at their home in the West Landivar area of Belize City. During the trial, the …
BTB holds tourism conference
Tourism is the leading sector in Belize and in recent years this sector has been soaring. There is a lot that goes into keeping this sector competitive including the annual tourism industry conference held by the Belize Tourism Board (BTB). This year’s conference focused on wellness and rejuvenation as well as birding and was held …
Honduran Nationals turned away
At approximately three o’clock yesterday afternoon twenty-seven Honduran nationals were turned away at Belize ‘s western border. The caravan had five buses with Central American nationals who were requesting entry into Belize as a church group that visits regularly. Love news understands that it may be a part of the Honduras caravan (HONDURAS VO). The …
Belizeans honored for their outstanding contribution to Belizean culture
Today, three Belizeans were awarded with the title of Artist Emeritus at the Museum of Belize for their outstanding contribution to Belizean culture. The National Institute of Culture and History ( NICH) hosted a short ceremony where Gerald “Lord” Rhaburn, Myrna Manzanares, and Florencio Mes were were honored. Mes’ for his contribution by way of …
Head on Collision on Highway
An accident occurred outside of Dangriga after seven this morning. The head-on collision injured three persons but luckily all of them survived. Harry Arzu, LoveFM’s Southern Correspondent spoke to the officer commanding the Dangriga Police formation regarding the investigation as to the cause of the accident. Harry Arzu: “Several persons received head and body injuries …
CWU says problems are still possible with PORT
A disaster has been temporarily averted as the Labour Minister had been observing the head-on clash between the Port of Belize Limited (PBL) and the Christian Workers Union (CWU). The 150 stevedores employed at the PBL should have been on strike today since their representative, the CWU did not reach an agreement with the PBL …
Will Mexico’s Free Zones affect Belize?
Mexico’s President-elect Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador Mexican says in January of 2019 his government will transform its cities and towns along its border with the USA into free zones. Then his focus will be on a similar measure with Chetumal, Quintana Roo. The economic impact of such a measure could be adverse to businesses within …
BNTU and MOE still at odds over hardship allowance
The Belize National Teachers Union (BNTU) and the Ministry of Education (MOE) are still at loggerheads over the re-categorization of hardship and rural allowances for teachers. The BNTU explained that the hardship allowance is a monthly stipend ranging from one hundred to two-hundred dollars for teachers who have to cross rough terrain to reach their …
ICJ Expert speaks about issues surrounding enforcement of court ruling
There are perhaps more questions than answers when it comes to the issue surrounding Belize, Guatemala and the International Court of Justice. With less than six months left before we go to referendum, it has become even more urgent to hear the arguments and ask the right questions. A team of six media personnel including …
Dr. Carla extends CWU’s strike notice by 10 more days
A meeting between the negotiating teams of the Christian Workers Union (CWU), representing stevedores, and representatives of the Port of Belize Limited (PBL) — their employer, was brokered today by the Minister of State in the Ministry of Labor; Dr. Carla Barnett. When the meeting ended, however, there was still no agreement between the two sides to end the impasse between them, and this prompted the Minister of Labor to extend the 21-days’ strike notice that the CWU had issued, which was due to end tomorrow, by an additional 10 days, during which time government is expected to set up a tribunal to resolve the impasse between the parties. Each side spoke to the media as they exited the Labor Department office on Belize City’s Albert Street, where the negotiations were held.
Sensational hit on Noel Leal, Jr., 33
At about 2:00 Sunday morning, Noel Leal, Jr., 33, a car dealer of Ladyville, Belize District, was found slumped dead over the steering wheel of his Volkswagen van, which was parked on a road in Mahogany Heights. Police said that Leal, the son of Assistant Commissioner of Police (ACP), Noel Leal, Sr., of the National Police Headquarters in Belmopan, had been shot in the back of the head. The bullet exited through his forehead and burst through the windshield of his vehicle.
Who killed Felina James, 37?
A mother of two children has been found dead after she was missing for seven days. Felina Margaret James, 37, dropped off her children at a babysitter a week ago, and concerns began growing when she didn’t return for them. Belize has become such that most Belizeans were fearing the worst, and the worst has come to pass. On Saturday, October 13, Ivette Roches, 69, reported to police that two days earlier, on Thursday, October 11, James left her two sons, ages 2 and 7, in her care. The two women had arranged for Roches to babysit the kids while James went to her home in the beautiful seacoast village of Sarteneja, Corozal District, to pick up some items, because she was in the process of moving to Belize City.
CCJ orders GST Commissioner to refund taxes collected from Cruise Solution and Discovery Expeditions
The Caribbean Court of Justice (CCJ) issued a ruling on Friday, October 12, in regards to the appeal of Cruise Solutions and Discovery Expeditions, two tour companies owned by businessman David Gegg, who has been engaged in a protracted legal battle with the Commissioner of General Sales Tax (GST). The court ordered the GST Commissioner to refund the taxes it collected from the two companies because under the GST Act, the companies were zero-rated. The CCJ ruling overturned a Court of Appeal decision which ruled in June 2016 that the companies were not zero-rated and must pay the GST.
Titan Securities compensatory damages fall from US$4.6 million to US$50,000 at CCJ
The Caribbean Court of Justice (CCJ) handed down its decision regarding the case of Titan International Securities, which was seeking in excess of four million dollars in compensatory damages from the Government of Belize for the violation of its constitutional rights when police raided its offices in September 2014. The Belize Government raid was carried out in cooperation with the United States, where an indictment against Titan principals was unsealed. The CCJ, however, set aside the US4.6 million dollars in compensatory damages that was awarded by Supreme Court Justice Courtenay Abel, and substituted in its place BZ$100,000 in vindicatory damages for the manner in which the police raid was carried out.
UWI ranked among Times Higher Education’s top universities
The University of the West Indies (UWI) was included among the top universities listed in Times Higher Education’s (THE) World University Rankings. Today, UWI held a press briefing to discuss this accomplishment as well as what it means for the university’s strategic agenda. UWI is the first and only Caribbean institution that has been listed in THE’s World University Rankings — being placed at the 591st spot out of the best 1,258 universities worldwide. Although UWI is a relatively young institution, being in existence for only 70 years, it has thus achieved a ranking in the top 5% of the over 2,500 recognized universities globally.
A 1-nil shocker for Belize; respect to Montserrat!
In all our years of struggle in CONCACAF play and World Cup qualifiers, there was always one consolation for Belize, and that was our dominance over a few teams on the lower end of CONCACAF and FIFA ranking. So that we posted convincing wins over St. Kitts and Nevis in the last World Cup qualifiers, and likewise against Montserrat, where Deon McCaulay had a hat trick in 2011. Belize even reached the 2013 Gold Cup. And, with rejuvenated FIFA funding for development, after a turbulent election process was finally settled in December of 2017 with a new FFB Executive headed by Sergio Chuc, things seemed on the upswing for Belize football, evidenced by the country-wide U-15 and U-17 male and female tournaments, and our national youth and senior “A” teams participating in a number of regional tournaments.
Weekend football games results from Corozal
The games of the previous weekend were all canceled due to the weather, but this past weekend was great, as we had lots of games ongoing in the Corozal Football Association (CFA) U-15, U-17, U-10 and Female U-17 tournaments. This upcoming weekend, it’s our semifinals, which will be played on Sunday only at the Ricalde Stadium. We would also like to mention that on October 27, we will start our First Division tournament; a total of 8 teams will be participating. This past week marked the 10th week of our ongoing U-15 Male and U-17 Male Tournaments. We are pleased to report that all games have been a success.
Dangriga Weekend Billiards Tournament
Over the weekend in Dangriga Town, Mayor Humphreys Bi-monthly Individual Pool Tournament at Aba Isieni Cool Spot had 22 players from across the Stann Creek District and Dangriga Town partaking in a very intense competition. The senior veteran “Squa” emerged as the victor for this tournament. The winners were: Charles “Squa” Rivas in first place; Jose “Pollo” Moralez, second place; and Edwin Vargas, third place.
Sports highlights from Punta Gorda
U-15 football: Rookie Strikers and Julian Cho Technical have both qualified to play the championship match, while Columbia and Medina Bank will play for third place in the U-15 football tournament. U-17 football: In the U-17 football tournament, Columbia and Toledo United will play in the championship match, while Big Falls and Estrellas will meet in the third place match in the U-17 football tournament. Senior Amateur football: The Normalizing Committee invites teams to an important meeting on Saturday, October 20, at the Victor Sanchez Stadium, beginning at 9:00 a.m. The purpose of the meeting is to discuss the rules and regulations in relation to a Senior Amateur tournament which is expected to kick off on Sunday, November 4.
Changing economy, changing times …
The economy of Belize has experienced, we submit, two dramatic changes since modern party politics began in British Honduras in 1950. The mainstream economy here in 1950 was based on the extraction of mahogany and other hardwoods, and chicle, from the forests for exportation to Great Britain and the United States. It was specifically to work in the woodcutting industry that African slaves had been imported into the Settlement of Belize in the seventeenth, eighteenth, and early nineteenth century. By 1950, the colony’s forestry resources were dwindling, and Belizean workers were travelling abroad, to Panama, Guatemala, and the United States in search of work. The Mayans and Mestizos of the villages in the Corozal and Orange Walk Districts had been farming food crops, as had the Creole people in the villages of the Belize River Valley and along the banks of the Sibun.
From The Publisher
Between 1951 and 1970, the sedition law in British Honduras/Belize was used to arrest and try five Belizeans in the Supreme Court. Three of these five were leaders of the anti-colonial People’s United Party (PUP) – Leigh Richardson and Philip Goldson (tried, convicted, and jailed in 1951), and George Price (tried and acquitted in 1958). In 1951 and 1958, British Honduras was still a Crown Colony, and the British were in absolute control of the police and the judicial system. In early March of 1970, however, British Honduras was a self-governing colony, and native Belizeans were in charge of the police and the judicial system, when Evan X Hyde and Ismail Omar Shabazz, president and secretary/treasurer, respectively, of the United Black Association for Development (UBAD), were arrested and tried in the Supreme Court under the sedition law.
HOW IT REALLY HAPPENED
It was on the morning of a GENERAL STRIKE called for Tuesday, March 31st by the Public Service Union (PSU), to press their demand for a People’s Referendum on the 1981 Heads of Agreement signed by GOB in London, England, March 11th. The PSU strike was backed by the Belize Action Movement (BAM), and the Youth Popular Front (YPF), the youth arm of the UDP. The Belize Chamber of Commerce and Industry (BCCI) was also sympathetic to the cause of the popular uprising. Noisy demonstrators began invading high schools by 7:30 the morning, including the Belize Technical College, St. Michael’s, St. Hilda’s, Wesley, St. Catherine, Excelsior, Pallotti, Nazarene, Junior High 1, and St. John’s College urging, and at times coercing, students to abandon classes and join the strike.
Holes in the watertight case
Our Government, supported by their erudite surrogates and some of our duplicitous “friends”, posits that we have nothing to fear if we vote Yes-to-the-ICJ next April. They claim that Belize has nothing to lose, since it is clear that we have a watertight case. If this is really true, do you honestly believe that Guatemala is so ignorant and stupid, even with factoring in the global power and influence of their world-class strategists and formidable backers, that they would be so gung ho to take their claim to the ICJ for final resolution if they had nothing to gain? I find myself unable to buy this argument. The incontrovertible reality is that if we go to the ICJ under the conditions a yes-vote in the upcoming referendum would invoke, then there will indeed be gaping holes in our alleged “watertight” case.
The British over there
Dr. Assad Shoman wrote in his little black book, Pocket Guide to the Referendum on the ICJ: “By around 1700, however, Spain no longer had much presence here…” Well, guess which European power filled the vacuum? After the Americans had consolidated their victory in their war of independence (1775-1783), that nation started to flex southward. Other European powers, notably the Germans, were nosing around, but the great challenge to the British would come from its former colony, the USA. Last year the Amandala carried an excerpt from a paper a lady named Anna Ella Carroll wrote to US president Abraham Lincoln, in which paper she told about all the virtues of Belize and all the Americans could do with it if they got a toehold. Of course, the Americans had designs on Guatemala and other countries in our hemisphere too.
“Mentally unfit” prisoner, without trial, spends10 years in prison
Two family members of a Belize City man who has been accused of arson but was never indicted and tried for the offense, because he was declared mentally unfit to go through a trial, want him released from the Belize Central Prison, where he has been held for almost 10 years. In January 2008, Earnest Billary visited his sister, Dawn Billary, at her house at 10 Hibiscus Lane in St. Martin De Porres. The purpose of the visit was to ask his sister if he could stay at her house. She refused, and Earnest, who had just completed serving a jail sentence a week before, allegedly threatened her.
Two Guatemalan cops busted with Uzi submachine gun in the Western Free Zone
Two Guatemalan policemen have been remanded until December 12 after they were taken to the San Ignacio Magistrate’s Court on Tuesday on charges of keeping a prohibited firearm and keeping ammunition without a gun license. The two Guatemalan cops, identified as Jose Juan Garcia Palma, 31, of Los Amates Izabal, Guatemala, and Armando Hub Pop, 35, of Coban Alta Vera Paz, Guatemala, were busted in their vehicle in the Western Free Zone in Benque Viejo Del Carmen at about 10:30 Saturday morning with an Uzi submachine gun, and twenty-five 9mm live rounds.
German woman, 44, robbed and raped in Teakettle
A German woman was robbed and raped in Teakettle on Friday, October 12, after she hitched a ride with a man on a motorcycle who was accompanied by two other men on another motorcycle. The woman, 44, a sales manager and resident of Cayo, reported to police that around 10 p.m. on Friday, she was socializing in San Ignacio and hitched a ride to Belmopan with the aforementioned man on a motorcycle. Instead of taking her to Belmopan, however, the men took her to a construction site in Teakettle.
CCJ overturns Japhet Bennett murder conviction due to unreliable identification evidence
Japhet Bennett, a convicted murderer who was serving a life in prison sentence, was released from the Belize Central Prison yesterday evening, after the Caribbean Court of Justice (CCJ) ruled to overturn his conviction due to unreliable identification evidence from a witness at his February 2013 trial in the Supreme Court of Justice Adolph Lucas. The jury found Bennett, 25, guilty of the September 13, 2009 murder of Ellis “Pepper Gacho” Meighan, who was shot to death on Central American Boulevard, a stone’s throw away from his Banak Street home.
CONCERN OVER SURVIVAL OF FREE-ZONE MOUNTS
There is growing concern among the business community and in political circles over a recent announcement by Mexican President-Elect, Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador, that Quintana Roo and other Mexican border states would be converted into free-zone states with significantly lower Value Added Tax (VAT) rates and standardized prices on fuel. Many fear that the move will be the nail in the coffin of the Corozal Commercial Free Zone, which has already seen a number of businesses close down due to a lack of productivity in the sector.
EDITORIAL – October 19th. 2018
The labour dispute over longer hours of work for waterfront workers of the Christian Workers Union and the Belize Port Authority has been blown out of all proportion by the narrow and wholly unrealistic view of the Belize Port Authority. The Port Authority has discovered that for safety reasons waterfront workers and stevedores should not be working more than eight continuous hours a day. The Port Authority now wants to restrict workers to the legal limit by removing the option port workers now enjoy to earn more take-home pay through overtime.
FORMER I.C.J JUDGE FEELS BELIZE HAS A STRONG CASE AT I.C.J
Former Judge at the International Court of Justice (ICJ) and Law Professor, Carlos Bernal, says that Belize has a strong case if we decide in our Referendum next April to take our territorial dispute with Guatemala to the ICJ for a peaceful settlement. The legal expert was speaking to a group of local journalists in Mexico City today as part of a sponsored US Embassy ICJ Education Campaign dubbed “From Fear to Facts; Demystifying the International Court of Justice”. The campaign involves a trip next month to the Hague in the Netherlands, Europe, which would make a final ruling on whether or not Guatemala has a legitimate claim to Belizean territory.
MILO PAZ’S FAMILY STILL AWAITING HIS REMAINS
The family of the late Milo Paz, the veteran pilot, who reportedly perished while flying a private plane near Panama on October 7, is still awaiting his remains. Today, Paz’s wife told the Reporter that they are in the process of finalizing documentation to bring her husband’s remains back to Belize. Hence, a funeral has not yet been planned.
Milton Maza and Eli Lopez FOUND GUILTY OF ATTORNEY’S MURDER
This morning Milton Maza and Eli Lopez were both found guilty of the murders of attorney Richard Stuart and his wife Maria in 2010. Sentencing has been reserved for November 9th.
POLICE HUNT FOR MISSING TEEN
Police are asking the public’s assistance in locating missing August Pine Ridge teenager Shamily Tillett. Tillett left home to go to an internet cafe on September 24 and has not returned since. Police say that she is believed to be with Alex Chan, 27, also of August Pine Ridge. Tillett’s family told police that Chan had approached them expressing a desire to have a relationship with her, but the family refused to accept that because of the girl’s age.
POLITICAL BLOWS THROWN OVER DILAPIDATED FIRE STATION
Following reports last week of the deplorable condition of the San Ignacio Fire Station, government officials including Minister Edmond Castro, CEO Ruth Meighan, and Mayor Earl Trapp, responded by noting there were efforts underway to upgrade the National Fire Service but did not discuss specific plans for the San Ignacio Fire Station.
Banyan Bay Market Day and a Great Belizean Product With a Strange Silly Name
Saturday’s farmers’ market at Banyan Bay was delightful. Lots of room to shop around. The vendors had some neat stuff from handcrafted jewelry to freshly baked quiche. They had make-up and books, artworks, beautiful wood carved home items and more. Chez Caribe owner Jack was playing cribbage next to the bar cart and said to tell everyone he’ll be there every Saturday if anyone wants to play with him. They also had live music. It was a perfect event. It is good to shop locally and help small businesses grow bigger. There are lots of really tasty treats for sale. You will find some great handmade bags, jewelry and so much more to stylize yourself. There is a great selection of environmentally friendly lifestyle products as well. Many of the sellers are also my friends.
Maddie in Belize
An Accidental Tourist, Daddy-Daughter Adventure. My father once told me, “never promise what you can’t deliver.” For years, Maddie has been talking about visiting Belize with her dad. As most of you already know, Ambergris Caye has been my international destination of choice for nearly a decade. Usually, I try to visit my home by the sea “Sorry Hampton,” three of four times a year. The decision originally came in the form of economics. It’s cheaper to travel to Belize than many United States cities. In time, (a short time) it became my favorite place. Great people, wonderful weather, and fantastic food! Earlier this year, her brother (Glenn Jr.) and I visited for his first international trip. Since Maddie didn’t have her passport at the time, she and I explored South Florida. It was far more expensive there for 3 days, than a week in Belize. I always told her, “I’m taking you before you go to high school.” For her, high school begins after Labor Day 2018, so Daddy was running out of time.
Jamaica Becomes First Caribbean Nation To Qualify For FIFA Women’s World Cup
Jamaica’s senior women’s national soccer team, the Reggae Girlz, has qualified for the World Cup, making history on the island and beyond. The Reggae Girlz defeated Panama’s women’s national team on Wednesday in a penalty shootout after a 2-2 draw. The Panamanian team is scheduled to play Argentina next month and still has a chance to qualify for the cup. Reaching the FIFA Women’s World Cup, to be held next year in France, was not only a first for Jamaica. The Reggae Girlz became the first Caribbean team to qualify for the tournament, FIFA said.
Belize signs Fruit Fly Control Cooperative agreement
On October 10, 2018, Belize officials participated in the 5th meeting of the Multilateral Fruit Fly Commission held in Mexico City. Attending were Jose Alpuche, CEO in the Ministry of Agriculture, Emir Cruz, Managing Director of Belize Agricultural Health Authority (BAHA) and Medfly Coordinator Hernan Zetina. During the meeting, the Fruit Fly Control Cooperative agreement was signed between the United States Department of Agriculture, the Ministry of Agriculture, and BAHA. Dr. Mike Watson, Administrative Assistant of the USDA Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service (APHIS), signed on behalf of the USDA. Jose Alpuche signed for Belize.
Caribbean maritime women chart the course for the next generation
A new mentorship scheme to encourage the next generation of women into the maritime sector has been launched at the annual conference of the Women in Maritime Association, Caribbean (WiMAC), which is being held in Belize City, Belize (16-19 October). This type of scheme is consistent with IMO’s Women in Maritime programme, which supports the participation of women in both shore-based and sea-going posts, in line with the goals outlined under the United Nations Sustainable Development Goal 5: “Achieve gender equality and empower all women and girls”. The mentorship model will be used as a blueprint throughout the IMO-supported regional Women in Maritime Associations.
This major discovery upends long-held theories about the Maya civilization
Archaeologists have uncovered 61,480 structures in Guatemala — a number the lead author in the study called “humbling.” In the autumn of 1929, Anne Morrow Lindbergh and her husband, Charles, flew across the Yucatán Peninsula. With Charles at the controls, Anne snapped photographs of the jungles just below. She wrote in her journal of Maya structures obscured by large humps of vegetation. A bright stone wall peeked through the leaves, “unspeakably alone and majestic and desolate — the mark of a great civilization gone.” Nearly a century later, surveyors once again took flight over the ancient Maya empire, and mapped the Guatemala forests with lasers. The 2016 survey, whose first results were published late last month in the journal Science, comprises a dozen plots covering 830 square miles, an area larger than the island of Maui. It is the largest such survey of the Maya region, ever.
Caribbean nations pay steep price for climate change caused by others
Although their contribution to global warming is negligible, Caribbean nations are bearing the brunt of its impact. Climate phenomena are so devastating that countries are beginning to prepare not so much to adapt to the new reality, but to get their economies back on their feet periodically. “We live every year with the expectation that we will have to go through the experience of rebuilding our communities and our infrastructure,” Molwyn Joseph, Antigua and Barbuda’s minister of health, wellness and the environment, told IPS in the Argentine capital. “We try to adapt to climate change by building more resilient infrastructure, but the adaptation is not the main issue in our minds. We are thinking about recovery after disasters,” added the environment official of the small island state of some 100,000 inhabitants, located between the Caribbean Sea and the Atlantic Ocean.