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Today's Belize News: August 7, 2020

Posted By: Marty

Today's Belize News: August 7, 2020 - 08/07/20 12:27 PM


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Specials and Events

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


The San Pedro Sun

Ambergris Caye under 14-day quarantine after spike in COVID-19 cases
Prime Minister Rt. Hon. Dean Barrow announced on Thursday, August 6th that San Pedro Town, Ambergris Caye is once again under quarantine following a surge in COVID-19 cases. The island shutdown is expected to commence at midnight Friday, August 7th with curfews for both adults and children. The situation on the island has been deemed as community transmission, with three clusters so far, and further cases yet to be confirmed. The State of Emergency on the island will prevent anyone traveling to or from the island and will be implemented via an Emergency Proclamation to be signed by Governor General Sir Colville Young later Thursday.

The Belize National Designated Authority Launches Studies on National Activities on Engagement with the Green Climate Fund
Since 2015, Belize has engaged with the Green Climate Fund (GCF) to improve access to international funds and to encourage investment in projects and programmes that will help the country adapt to and mitigate climate change and its impacts. Through GCF readiness support, the National Designated Authority (NDA) is launching three case studies to outline Belize’s past engagement experiences with the GCF and future initiatives that will benefit key stakeholders. These include the Development Finance Corporation (DFC), Belize Sugar Industries (BSI), and by extension, the citizens of Belize as the country seeks to improve access to climate finance and the achievement of climate-related goals.

Ambergris Today

Ambergris Caye Lockdown Again For 14 Day Quarantine
After a sharp increase in COVID-19 cases in Belize, in particular San Pedro, Ambergris Caye, the Government of Belize has decided to implement an emergency proclamation for the entire country that includes a 14-day Quarantine Lockdown for San Pedro, Ambergris Caye and parts of the Orange Walk District, only. Besides the 13 new COVID-19 cases in Ambergris Caye, announced last night, Wednesday, August 5, 2020, 19 more cases are expected to be announced later today which is included in the 23 new case expected in the entire country. Community spread in San Pedro has been confirmed with one of the clusters on the island indicating a possible source of infection coming from Orange Walk, linking the two locations.

Twenty New Cases Confirmed In San Pedro, 28 Countrywide
For the second time in a week, we have to report a record number of identified positive cases for one single day. A total of 121 samples were processed today, August 6, 2020, some of these are still contacts from San Pedro, the northern districts and from the enhanced surveillance that is currently ongoing countrywide.

Various Belizean Sources

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Caye Caulker Soup Kitchen day Location

Elections and Boundaries Department Visit to Caye Caulker Cancelled
The Elections and Boundaries Department regrets to inform the general public that the scheduled visit to accept applications for registration and transfer of electors in Caye Caulker Village for the 7th, 8th and 9th August 2020 has been cancelled. The Department apologizes for any inconvenience that this cancellation may have caused; however the health and safety of all continues to be a priority.

Buying Seafood in San Pedro
To all our valued customers Hillyboo's Seafoods will still be selling and delivering on the conditions allowed. Sorry we won't be selling publicly anymore. You can either come to my shop on Back Street or order for deliveries. Please practice the safe protocols required. We have a healthy stock of fish, lobsters, crabs shrimps and fillets! 665 7106 for orders and deliveries! Eat healthy and stay safe San Pedro!

Corozal Town Council Online Payment Information
Due to the recent rise in cases of COVID-19 We would like to inform the General Public that you can make Online payments for your convenience and safety. Information for online payments are provided below. Our Offices are open from 9:00 am to 3:00 pm. visit us or call 480-2072 for more information.

Social Security Board Online Services
Social Security Board remains committed to safeguarding the health and safety of our staff and customers. In light of this, we strongly encourage the use of our Online Services.

Wildfire Artzmosphere Needs Your Help
The Wildfire Artzmosphere is looking for sponsors to help in these maga times. They've had so many great events over the years, from food events to plays(many original), to dances. If you can help them out, the community would be very appreciative. If you can..... cause it's real. sadly ...Sept could bring troubles

Western Dairies But one Get one Free Special
Western Dairies is having a buy one get one special on their ice cream this Saturday at their downtown location. Saturday August 8th 2020 at our San Ignacio branch. Time: 8:00 am to 4:00 pm Buy from our truck to get your free icecream!

Coconut Festival Cancelled
Unfortunately, the Coconut Festival has been cancelled. Wear a mask!

The Department of Youth Services is continuing their football tournament this Sunday, and concluding it on the 16th
DYS Santa Elena is concluding this year’s summer activities with a U-20 football Tournament! The tournament has begun, with the last two games coming up on the 9th and 16th of August. This tournament’s objective is to engage youth to demonstrate their individual skills and abilities through sports. We recruited a total of 8 teams via google forms, targeting a total of 64 males between ages 15 - 20. Good luck to all the teams competing!

Temporary closure of three of the offices of the Labour Departmen
The public is hereby informed of the temporary closure of three of the offices of the Labour Department: Belize City, San Pedro and San Ignacio.

Social Security Board Donates $99,200 to the Ministry of Education
Today, the Minis, of Education received a donation of S99,200 from the Social Securi-ty Board to support the Health and Safety guidelines for the eventual reopening of schools in Belize. This donation will assist with the construction of two hundred and forty-eight (248) Hand Washing Stations necessary to ensure that all safety measures are in place for schools throughout the country. Acting Chief Executive Officer of the Board, Mrs. Deborah Ruiz and Chairman, Dr. Colin Young handed over the donation to Dr. Carol Babb, Chief Education Officer and Mrs. Deborah Domingo, Chief Executive Officer who accepted on behalf of the Ministry of Education, Youth, Sports and Culture.

COVID-19 Update from Office of Director of Health Services
For the second time in a week, we have to report a record number of identified positive cases for one single day. Today, we processed a total of 121 samples, some of these are still contacts from San Pedro, the northern districts and from the enhanced surveillance that is currently ongoing countrywide. We can confirm a total of 28 positive cases for SARS-CoV2 and the preliminary breakdown is as follows (this may change as further information is gathered):

San Pedro Town Council offices closed for 14 days
Please be advised that our offices will be closing for the two weeks (14 days) of quarantine as implemented by the Government of Belize. Our offices will be open from 8:00 a.m. to 12 noon, tomorrow, August 7th, 2020 for anyone wishing to access our services. Stay tuned to our Facebook pages for any updates. Do not forget to practice social distancing, always wear your mask, stay 6 feet apart from others and wash your hands regularly, but most importantly, stay home to stop the spread. Stay safe San Pedro, we can do this.

In Loving Memory of Kyle Yair Carias
Please join us in celebrating the beautiful life of Kyle Yair Carissa March 2005 - August 2020. We are gathering at the family’s home near the Caye Caulker football field for a wake on August 7, 2020. Please help to make the wake possible within the current law by following the measures described below.

A message from the Caye Caulker Roman Catholic School
Good afternoon Parents, Please take note that classes have been called off for August 10 by the Ministry of Education. There is not a set date of when school will reopen as yet. Please stay in tune with news update. The list for your children that will be in morning shift and afternoon shift will still be sent out tomorrow afternoon on the school's facebook. The teachers will also be giving you all a call personally to let you know too, or will be sending it out through chat group. The walk through video that was also set for Friday will be postpone to next week. We want to get everything ready before we do the walk through. Since now we have more time to be better prepared we will leave it for next week. You will all be notified of when and what time. Thanks for your understanding and support.

United States Donates Vehicles and Equipment to Ministry of National Security to Protect Border Security
On August 6, the United States Government donated an ambulance, six vehicles, and aircraft and vehicle parts valued at U.S. $1 million to the Belize Ministry of National Security in a handover ceremony at Force Headquarters on Price Barracks. The donation was funded by U.S. Southern Command’s Building Partner Capacity and Foreign Military Funding programs through the U.S. Embassy’s Security Cooperation Office. Today’s handover ceremony represents the culmination of almost three years of effort and partnership with the Ministry of National Security to purchase the equipment. The donation includes a fully-equipped Toyota Land Cruiser ambulance, six Hino 500 4x4 Troop Transport Vehicles and vehicle parts, and a container of aircraft parts.

Handover ceremony at Force Headquarters
Chargé d’Affaires, a.i. Keith Gilges was honored to participate in today’s handover ceremony at Force Headquarters on Price Barracks, where the United States Government donated an ambulance, six vehicles, and aircraft and vehicle parts valued at U.S. $1 million to the Belize Ministry of National Security. The donation was funded by U.S. Southern Command’s Building Partner Capacity and Foreign Military Funding programs through the U.S. Embassy’s Security Cooperation Office. The ambulance, aircraft parts, and newly expanded vehicle fleet is expected to significantly improve the effectiveness of Belize’s border security operations.

Art & Soul series: Ultimate Sapphire Dance Company
This week's Art & Soul series showcases another talented Corozal dance group. Corozal is just brimming with talent!! We are delighted to feature the Ultimate Sapphire Dance Company. Since its inception in 2015, the company has been entertaining audiences locally, nationally and internationally. Their dynamic energy shines through with their large repertoire of dance including contemporary, Afro Caribbean, Belizean folklore, Latin contemporary/lyrical, urban dance, and funk jazz.. Congratulations to choreographer Mr. Victor Casanova for instilling artistic knowledge and a passion for dance unto this vibrant group of young performers.

Belize Natural Energy Charitable Trust Donates to Caledonia and San Narciso cultural groups
On behalf of The Caledonia and San Narciso cultural groups, we would like to extend a most sincere thanks to Belize Natural Energy Charitable Trust for providing this small donation towards the education of these children. We congratulate the parents and organizers for all their efforts in the promotion and safeguarding our Belizean Heritage through dance and music.

Channel 7

COVID Outbreak: 53 Active Cases, 24 More Could Be Added Tonight
There is community spread of COVID 19 on San Pedro - and tonight, the overall national picture is worsening, and worrying. There are 53 active cases, and 24 more could be added tonight. Two persons are currently hospitalised. The cases are spread across San Pedro, Orange Walk, Corozal, and as of last night, Belmopan has recorded its first case. The consequence of all this is that San Pedro is going to lock down at midnight tonight - as will the villages of Santa Marta, Guinea Grass and Shipyard in the Orange Walk District. Then, there will be another general, more relaxed state of emergency and curfew for the entire country.

San Pedro, We Have Lockdown
So, there were 86 cases up to last night and 23 more are expected to be confirmed tonight. The numbers are exploding and now that community spread has been confirmed on San Pedro - the first time it is being confirmed anywhere in Belize - that means the island is going on a lockdown - which will last for at least 14 days. The Prime Minister explained that that there will be measures for the entire country, but special attention will be paid to San Pedro and villages in Orange Walk: "We have decided that we will implement an emergency proclamation for the entire country of Belize but I want to explain that under that emergency proclamation, the regulations that will be prolongated will differ for Ambergris Caye, those will be of a particular nature and scope and compass, a second set of regulations under the general umbrella of the overall emergency proclamation for all of Belize. A second set of regulations will be prolongated with respect to the Orange Walk district and then of course there will be rather more limited, rather more general set of regulations that again..."

XCountrywide Curfew At Midnight
And, those San Pedro regulations will also apply in the Orange Walk District villages of Santa Marta, Guinea Grass and Shipyard. And for the rest of the Orange Walk District, and, indeed, the rest of the country, there will also be a curfew coming into effect at midnight tonight. Here's more from the PM: "The regulations for the country leaving aside Ambergris Caye and the villages in Orange Walk district, which have their own particularly draconian lockdown regulations, rest of the country including the rest of the Orange Walk district will be subject to regulations that will impose a curfew but it will be between the hours of 10 PM and 4:59 AM on weekdays and on weekends, the curfew will be from 12 AM to 4:59 AM. As well we are going to close bars, discotheques, rum shops and nightclubs country wide..."

Don’t Touch That Corona, Contraband Consumers Will Also Be Charged
And while the familiar regulations for social distancing, curfew, and limits to crowd numbers are coming into effect - one existing law is getting much more strict. It's the one regulating border jumpers and contraband. These outlaw activities have been driving the spike in the north, and today the PM announced draconian measures to crackdown, even on that bottle of corona you've been toasting on social media. Here's more: "The current prescription of a 3 months incarceration sentence in the first instance for any convicted border jumper - 3 months in the first instance and then a year or subsequent offence, we're going to increase that 3-month penalty to 6 months. Also, we are perhaps not by the way of the SI because I'm not certain that we can do that by means of subsidiary legislation but we are going to go to the house and we will make that border jumping offence, you're charged with the offence of border jumping, you will not be able to get bail from the magistrate's court, you will have to go to the supreme court..."

Lockdown Is Conservative To Protect Economy
And, for those who favour a total lockdown - especially of the north - the Prime Minister stressed that government must weigh the impact of a total lockdown on the economy and national life: "While we have to act, we don't want to overreact or to go too far too fast because if for example, we lockdown the entire country, we all know what that means in terms of bringing economic activity to a halt in terms of collapsing further government revenues, we're got to try to maintain as much as is consistent with our paramount concerns about health, we've got to maintain as much activity as we can, so that we can deliver the goods and services to the people. So that those that drive the private sector are not prematurely cut off, it's a huge deal when you lockdown completely."

Father of 4 Executed Two Years After His Brother
Tonight, the Humes-Baizar family has lost its second son to gang violence. It happened at 9:00 last night when Shakeem Humes Sr. was sitting in front of his home at 8 miles. That's when a vehicle parked in front of him, and someone inside called out to him. When he went over, a hail of bullets began to fly. Shakeem died on the spot, and this morning his sister told us that his death comes painfully close to the anniversary of their brother Shakidi's death, who was murdered in August 2018. Cherisse Halsall reports on this young father's violent end.

Police Move to Contain Retaliation
As you heard Humes was a well-known George Street figure. The same was said of his brother Shakidi. And, two years ago in the aftermath of his death, the cops had to deal with four gang-related killings in less than a week. But can the same be expected this time around? That's the question we put to Commissioner of Police Chester Williams. Here's how he responded. "No, we're not trying to go that route at this time. We don't want as something happen; we pull that. We will try to see how we can investigate and hope that we'll be able to go directly to the persons responsible and take those persons out of circulation and at the end of the day..."

Freak Boating Accident Kills Teen
15-year-old Kyle Carias died tragically and suddenly last night from injuries sustained in a freak boating accident. It's a turn of events that his family could never have imagined but one they are grappling with tonight. Cherisse Halsall has that story. Blood was left on the deck of this small boat yesterday when Kyle Carias's brother, Giovanni, rushed him off to Belize City in a desperate attempt to save his life. He was gravely injured when another boat passed too close causing a swell that knocked him overboard - and fell right unto the engine's propeller.

Cop Scalded For Trying To Enforce Mask Regulations
There's been a lot of police talk about enforcing COVID regulations - especially wearing face masks. But, this morning, a police inspector was assaulted by a civilian who was disobeying the law. Keith Clarke attempted to point this out to the man, who then threat scalding hot water on him. Seen here, he suffered severe burn injuries on the shoulder, for simply doing his job, and today, the Police Commissioner told the press that the civilian will be criminally charged for it:

Cops and Contraband Corruption
In the Prime Minister virtual press conference yesterday, he clearly stated that that Belizean law enforcement agents been aiding and abetting border jumpers. He said, quote, "The public officials of this country that are clearly very much in league with the border jumpers, that are clearly very much complicit in the kind of dangerous illegal activity that has, by and large, resulted in this new and deeper crisis that we're now experiencing." End quote.

Security CEO Discusses Cop Complicity In Contraband
This morning, when he was available at another event, the press asked National Security CEO George Lovell about the implications of law enforcement's complicity with the contrabandists who continue to jump the border. Here's what he had to say: "We get the same kind of information that the Prime Mime Minister get, at the Ministry of National Security. And it's sad, and it's very disturbing where you hear these kinds of things because these are the same people who we, the tax-payers, pay, and who we at the Ministry of National Security..."

Immigration Officers Turned Smugglers Part of Cross Border Corruption?
The press also asked the Police Commissioner about those 3 immigration officers who were caught yesterday with over 7 pounds of weed inside a white Mahindra pickup, which is owned by the Government of Belize. As we told you, they were intercepted in Orange Walk, near the toll bridge at a checkpoint between miles 40 and 50. When the cops searched the vehicle, they found a brown cardboard box, which was stashed with several parcels of marijuana, to a total weight of 3.3 kilos, or 7 and a half pounds. The ComPol told us this evening, that the drugs are believed to be of Mexican origin, which suggests that an illegal, cross-border element to this drug smuggling operation:

How Did Jumper Escape
And keeping it on news about cross-border concerns, yesterday, Jose David Perez, an alleged border jumper, from a village in the Cayo District, escaped from the quarantine centre at the Victor Galvez Stadium in the San Ignacio. Reports reaching the press are that an allegation has been raised that one of his relatives allegedly paid some sort of a bribe to a BDF soldier, to allow him to escape. "A boarder jumper in Cayo suggested that law enforcement in the form of BDF soldier was supposedly paid to facilitate the escape of this particular person."

BDF Commander On Poor Enforcement of Quarantine Centers
Earlier in the day, the press also asked the Commander of the BDF, Brigadier General Steven Ortega, about these escapes from quarantine facilities, that keep on happening while his soldiers are on guard duty. "The escape yesterday, they keep happening, escape from quarantine facilities. What is being done to date? You've spoken about the first two cases and then I think there has been at least 2 more if not more escapes. How are these soldiers being held accountable?"

Central Quarantine Facility Coming Along
And because these escapes from the quarantine facilities pose a huge risk to public health, the Ministry of National Security is setting up one central quarantine location for border jumpers, that can actually have the required security features. The Prime Minister had mentioned it last week, and here's the National Security's CEO update on it: "Always a concern and we're working on that. Cabinet has just approved for us to have a facility that we can say is build for purpose. When I say that, remember now, these border jumpers are kept in ITVET and stadiums and that these facilities are not built for purpose, so it's difficult and very challenging for our security forces and so Cabinet has just approved for us to have just a facility and we at National Security are currently working on trying to put together that facility and hopefully we will see less if not, no escapees."

Minister Says Schools Could Open in September
Belize's one hundred thousand primary school students are on a hyper - extended Easter straight through to summer break, but it could end in the first week of September. That's when school would have normally started - and it is now an aspirational date for opening after an explosion in the number of COVID cases forced the postponement of the August 10th opening date. The Minister of Education explained at yesterday's press conference: "Quite frankly right now, we're thinking about a two or three week delay if we can get this thing under control, and that the school year will start, as was to be scheduled, according to the Education Act, the first week in September. I am hesitant to make that announcement, but that is really what we have in mind. In the areas with increased or confirmed community spread, school reopening may be further delayed, while in areas with low risks or no apparent community spread, schools will be allowed to open for face to face instruction..."

Fears Rise As Possible COVID Cases Appear Across Institutions
At the top of the news you learned that effective at midnight, the country is going into another COVID lockdown - after community spread was confirmed on San Pedro. The number of active cases have more than doubled in a week - and today the Supreme court and the general registry announced that effective immediately, its courts and offices would be closed until Monday, august 10. This was done to facilitate the sanitization of our public areas - which we witnessed today as personnel in specialised suits were seen cleaning the courts. This is after the General Registry put out a notice saying that its staff members may have been exposed, quote, "in a general way" to COVID-19. Immediate action has been taken to send officers to be tested and put into isolation.

Tracking The Tourists Part 2
The airport won't open on August 15th - but the Prime Minister says it may open in September and tonight we have part two of our story on how tourists and returning residents will be tracked and monitored. There is a specific plan for returning Belizeans and other persons who will be staying in the country for a more extended period. Daniel Ortiz has that story: We've already told you how tourists - when they do come - will be kept within a safe corridor. Then, there is the other group of travellers, such as a returning Belizean, a person who owns a home and resides in Belize temporarily or permanently, or business travellers. They will have a different procedure to follow.

Whole Will Track The Bracelets?
This morning, National Security CEO George Lovell was asked about the actual enforcement and monitoring of the Belizeans who will be required to wear these tracking bracelets. He said that there will be a group of officials who will be assigned to ensure that Belizeans follow the rule of the tracking bracelet and the quarantine at home: "We had the discussions at Taskforce level, and I sit on the National Taskforce for COVID...."

US Donated To BDF
That opportunity to speak with the National Security CEO happened today at the Belize Defense Force's Price Barracks Headquarters in Ladyville. That's where the US Embassy in Belize handed over a 1-million-US-dollar donation to the BDF. The donation included a fully-equipped Toyota Land Cruiser ambulance, six Hino 500 4x4 Troop Transport Vehicles, vehicle parts, and a container of aircraft parts. This donation was funded by the U.S. Southern Command's Building Partner Capacity and Foreign Military Funding programs, through the U.S. Embassy's Security Cooperation Office.

Companies Donate to Contraband Effort
This evening, the Police Department also received a donation of its own in the form of a new police mobile equipped to carry out off-road patrols in and around the Corozal village of San Victor, which is located near to that northern district's border with Mexico. This area has been identified as an active hotspot for border jumpers, and so, a coalition of private-sector entities pooled their resources together to buy the police a 2020 Ford Ranger Pick-up truck.

Will US Ambassador Designate Make It To Belize Before the US Election?
3 weeks ago, we told you how US President Donald Trump finally made a nomination for the next US Ambassador to Belize. He's Andre Bauer, the former South Carolina Lieutenant Governor, who gained prominence from 2016 to 2019 as a pro-Trump analyst on CNN. It may take months for the Senate to confirm him as the US ambassador, but President Trump's term in office ends in November when he'll be up for re-election.

COMSTAT Says Crime Coming Down
And while police are making much news right now as the frontline troopers trying to keep Belize safe from border jumpers, that's not considered major crime. Today the police department had its bi-annual COMSTAT meeting to discuss those major crime stats. It's a good picture, as major crime in the first 6 months of the year is down by 24.1% murders decreased by 22.7% in that period, meaning there were 15 fewer murders in January to June of 2020 compared to the same period last year.

SSB Sponsors Soap For Schools
By now, every Belizean parent and child surely knows that school reopening's have been pushed back to a date to be announced. And while the bell won't ring on Monday, there were many preparations for school already on the way. An all-important one is the outfitting of handwashing stations. As we've told you many schools were ill-equipped without enough of the potentially life-saving sinks. It's a problem that the Chief education Officer Carol Babb was rushing to solve.

Health Minster Has Gas Problems
When the threat of COVID first appeared, Belize didn't have nearly enough ventilators to respond in the event of a national crisis. But, thanks to purchases and donations, the country has more ventilators than ever before. And these are being deployed to regional and community hospitals in the event that COVID infected persons in respiratory distress start appearing. But, this ventilators need oxygen, and the Ministry says it has a contractual difference with the private company which supplies the gas: Hon. Pablo Marin - Minister of Health: "You all know that we have all our ventilators. We have at KHMH we have 6 ventilators. But we have already buy (SIC) more ventilators, we have gotten donations for ventilators, and we were going to install 6 more in Belmopan, we were going to install in Orange Walk, we were going to install in Corozal. nut now the company that is the one in charge of putting those gasses they came with proposal stating that you know what, they're going to, to give us a portion of the finance..."

Channel 5

Prime Minister Dean Barrow Announces Countrywide Quarantine Measures
Strident measures are being imposed across the country due to an exploding number of cases of corona virus. There are more than fifty active cases as of now. First, we [...]

Ambergris Caye on Lockdown!
Now in the case of San Pedro, hundreds have been leaving the island.  Prime Minister Dean Barrow announced today that Ambergris Caye, where there is community spread and two COVID-19 [...]

Three Villages in Orange Walk Quarantined
Turning to Orange Walk….the villages of Santa Martha, Shipyard and Guinea Grass will also go into lockdown at midnight. Santa Martha is of particular concern because a cluster has been [...]

Community Spread of COVID-19 in San Pedro
What led to the lockdown and curfew is an additional fourteen cases of COVID-19 that were identified overnight, bringing the total number of active cases of the virus in Belize [...]

Non-Essential Travel Across the Country Must be Avoided
Contact tracing for the positive case in Belmopan begins; that person is linked to the Santa Martha case in the north. The mapping exercise continues for the clusters in San [...]

Stricter Penalties for Border Jumpers
Border jumpers are giving rise to an increase in the number of cases especially so in bordering communities.  Government will also be going to the House to amend legislation to [...]

Shakeem Humes Executed Outside his Home at the 8 Miles Community
A gang related murder occurred on Wednesday night. Skakeem Humes Senior was shot multiple times and died at the K.H.M.H. undergoing treatment.  The police say that three men drove up [...]

Brothers Charged in Connection with Fatal Shooting in the West!
Police have arrested and charged two brothers in connection with the double murder that happened on Sunday, July nineteenth in San Ignacio. Thirty-one-year-old Minor Galindo and thirty-four-year-old David Galindo of [...]

Immigration Employees Busted with Weed
Three employees of the Immigration Department have been detained by police in connection with drug trafficking but the men will not be formally charged until two weeks’ time. Police say [...]

Boating Accident Victim Dies
On Wednesday we reported on a boating incident that happened off the coast of Caye Caulker and left a teenager critical. Well, tonight we report that the victim Fifteen-year-old student [...]

Officer Scalded by Resident
A frontline worker was attacked by a resident who refused to wear a mask. This morning, Inspector Keith Clarke was scalded with boiling water near the Pound Yard Bridge when [...]

Border Jumpers Putting Public Health at Risk
Border jumpers and contraband go together; the illegal activity continues to flourish in border communities in the north where there is an insatiable appetite for Mexican goods, with beer at [...]

Duck Run Border Jumper on the Run!
The authorities are still trying to track down the border jumper who escaped from the quarantine facility in the west.  Jose David Perez, a villager of Duck Run, escaped from [...]

Another Person Escapes Quarantine Facility
So far you have heard that immigration officers have been busted with weed and cops are involved in contraband. Now, a man escaped from the quarantine facility in San Ignacio [...]

Female Soldier Tested for COVID-19
A female soldier has been tested for the deadly coronavirus. This was confirmed by B.D.F. Commander Brigadier General Steven Ortega today. According to Ortega the female officer came in contact with [...]

Contraband Cops? What?
And while law enforcement officers are trying to prevent border jumpers, they also have to deal with their very own officers. Reliable reports are that police officers are not only [...]

Public Officers, including Law Enforcement, facilitating Illegal Trade of Goods
The Prime Minister on Wednesday suggested that public officials, including law enforcement, are complicit in allowing persons practicing contraband activities by facilitating the illegal trade.  Commissioner of Police Chester Williams [...]

Major Crimes are Down for the First Half of 2020!
While crime is abundant, tonight police are reporting good crime stats for the first half of this year.  Commissioner of Police Chester Williams says that major crimes are down, with [...]

National Security C.E.O. Speaks on Private Flight
A private flight landed in the country reportedly on July tenth, days ahead of the fishing tournament in San Pedro, Ambergris. That tournament is now considered a super COVID-19 spreader. [...]

PM Supports Private Flights for Certain Purposes
According to Prime Minister Dean Barrow a decision will be made next week whether private flights will be allowed to continue to enter and exit the country during the pandemic. [...]

Belize Hotel Association Reacts to G.O.B.’s Decision to Not Open the P.G.I.A. on August 15th
Prime Minister Dean Barrow announced on Wednesday that the Philip Goldson International Airport will no longer reopen on August fifteenth. This is due to the alarming increase of COVID-19 cases.  [...]

U.S. Embassy Donates to the Belize Defence Force
Six Hino troop-carrying vehicles, an ambulance, and aircraft spares were today handed to the Belize Defence Force. The donation is worth a little over a million dollars and it comes [...]

9 Private Sector Companies Donate Vehicle to Police Department for Contraband Fight
A group of Belizean private sector companies made a significant contribution to the Belize Police Department today in its fight against the illicit contraband trade. The forty-five thousand-dollar investment comes [...]

Fabrigas Prepared to Supply Any Amount of Oxygen Necessary Due to the Pandemic
Due to the ongoing crisis of COVID-19, Fabrigas Belize issued a release today to assure the public that it has the capacity to supply the country with medical oxygen.  The [...]

Healthy Living: Breastfeeding in COVID
It is world breastfeeding week. It is being celebrated under the theme, “Support Breastfeeding for a Healthier Planet.”  But what are the risks associated with breastfeeding during a pandemic? We [...]

Posted By: Marty

Re: Today's Belize News: August 7, 2020 - 08/07/20 12:27 PM

The Reporter

14 Day Quarantine, San Pedro locked down again
The Prime Minister has announced that the country will go into 14 days of quarantine. San Pedro will undergo a complete lockdown and a curfew will be in effect between 4:59 am. to 7.59 pm. In Orange Walk the villages of Guinea Grass, Santa Martha, and Shipyard, will undergo a complete lockdown as well. The rest of the country will experience curfew between 10:00 pm to 4:59 am on weekdays and 12:00 am to 4:59 am on weekends.

Supreme Court closed due to suspected exposure to Covid-19 virus
The Supreme Court in Belize City has been closed down due to the suspected exposure of several staff members to the COVID-19 virus. We were told that several staff members have been sent home to quarantine. Those individuals will be tested for the virus and the results are expected to be available this weekend. Depending on those results, the Supreme Court will resume business on Monday.

Breaking Belize NewsPJ

Belize registers 28 new cases of COVID-19, confirmed cases now at 114
The Ministry of Health has confirmed 28 new cases of COVID-19. A record high of […]

Government stiffens penalties for contraband and border jumping
Those found jumping the borders, which officially remains closed, now face stiffer penalties, as do […]

Schools remain closed, authority figures to be charged for abetting flouting of regulations
Schools are closed until further notice and will not be allowed to open in any […]

Attorney General defends mask wearing protocol
Defending his own recent picture where he is shown not wearing a mask while on […]

ASK THE EXPERTS PRIMETIME: Rest of Belize restricted by curfew
According to Attorney General Michael Peyrefitte, it was necessary to put the entire country under […]

ASK THE EXPERTS PRIMETIME: A.G. details ins and outs for “lockdown” areas in Orange Walk, Ambergris
Effective at midnight tonight, the villages of Santa Martha, Guinea Grass and Shipyard and all […]

United States donates vehicles and equipment to Ministry of National Security to protect borders
On August 6, the United States Government donated an ambulance, six vehicles, and aircraft and […]

US grants UNICEF, Ministries of Education and Health US $300,000 for COVID-19 prevention response
The U.S. Government and Agency for International Development (USAID) today delivered US $300,000 (BZ $600,000) […]

“Teachers still required to return to work,” says Minister of Education
Minister of Education, Patrick Faber, said today that teachers, except for those who live and […]

Director of Health Services says there may be 23 more COVID-19 cases announced today
During the COVID-19 press briefing being held this afternoon, the Director of Health Services (DHS), […]

Several Orange Walk villages to be placed on quarantine
The villages of Santa Martha, Shipyard and Guinea Grass, in the Orange Walk district, will […]

“Emergency proclamation for the entire country, San Pedro on complete lockdown” says Prime Minister
Prime Minister Dean Barrow announced today that because of the surge in COVID-19 caes, the […]

Number of COVID-19 cases now at 86, community transmission in San Pedro confirmed
Today health authorities say that COVID-19 community spread has been confirmed in San Pedro, Ambergris […]

University of Belize says no confirmed case of COVID-19 among staff
This morning, rumors circulated like wildlife that a staff member of the University of Belize […]

Ask The Experts goes live with Attorney General tonight
A special edition of the Government of Belize broadcast “Ask The Experts” will air live […]

Teacher’s Union grateful for delayed reopening of schools, reminds teachers to report to work
The Belize National Teachers Union (BNTU) said today that it is grateful for the Government […]

Supreme Court General registry sends home staff amidst suspected COVID-19 case
The Supreme Court General registry issued a notice this morning saying that members of its […]

Woman reportedly flung from vehicle in road traffic accident
Reports are reaching our newsroom of a road traffic accident in the vicinity Burrell Boom […]

Registration and transfers canceled for electors in Caye Caulker Village
The Elections and Boundaries Department informed today that the scheduled visit to accept applications for […]

Teenager dies following boating accident
Kyle Carias, 15, died yesterday following a boating accident in Caye Caulker. Carias, a student […]

Food warning labels good for your health, says Healthy Caribbean Coalition
The Healthy Caribbean Coalition (HCC) points to two recent studies suggesting that front of package […]

George Street affiliate killed in mile 8 community
Last night 27-year-old Shakeem Humes also known as “Bap”, a known affiliate of the reputed […]

CARICOM celebrates Jamaica’s 58th Independence Anniversary
The island of Jamaica is marking 58 years of independence from Great Britain today, Thursday. […]

American Airlines may cancel travel to Belize market long term due to postponement of airport reopening
At his original announcement of the reopening date of the Philip Goldson International Airport (PGIA) […]

Child in San Pedro diagnosed with COVID-19
On Wednesday, August 5, 2020, the Ministry of Health detected 14 new cases of COVID-19. […]

Belize monitoring 53 active cases of COVID-19
Health authorities are currently monitoring 53 active cases of COVID-19. Of the active cases, 25 […]

Blogs

The CoVid-19 Update in Belize: Airport Re-opening Canceled, Complete 14-Day Quarantine in Place For Ambergris Caye
Yesterday, August 5th, our Prime Minister, Dean Barrow, held a press conference to make official what many of us had been hearing. There were two new cases in San Pedro – and there seemed to be quite a bit of spread. Over 50 tests had been taken – and we were awaiting results. There were cases in the Orange Walk District in the NW Corner of Belize. More testing was being done there. The International Airport would NOT open as planned on August 15 – canceled with no re-opening date. Our schools would NOT be opening on August 10th. All re-openings would be scheduled based on the numbers – we need to get these numbers down before we can re-open school or the country to visitors.

International Sourcesizz

Belize Suspends Border Reopening After COVID-19 Cases Surge
The government of Belize announced a delay in the re-opening of Philip Goldson International (PIGA) due to a “spike in the number of COVID-19 cases in three districts,” said Dean Barrow the country’s prime minister, in a statement. The airport opening “will be announced at a later date,” Barrow said. Preliminary results in Belize’s popular San Pedro district resulted in 14 new potentially positive cases of COVID-19, but government health officials are “currently undergoing the confirmation process,” said Barrow in a statement. Although the airport will not reopen, weekly repatriation flights for Belizean nationals will continue, with all returning residents subject to mandatory 14-day quarantine upon arrival. To date, Belize has reported 57 COVD-19 cases with two deaths from the virus.

Current pause in Atlantic tropical activity won't last long, expert warns
A lull in tropical activity over the Atlantic basin that began right after Isaias's demise on Wednesday is likely to last through this weekend, but the quiet conditions are not likely to last long given 2020's track record. "Sea surface temperatures continue to run much higher than normal across the southern part of the Atlantic, much of the Gulf of Mexico and along the southeastern coast of the United States," AccuWeather's top hurricane expert Dan Kottlowski said. "The very warm water and generally favorable winds in the middle and upper part of the atmosphere are creating lower-than-average surface pressure over much of the Atlantic basin, which in turn has created and will continue to create a favorable environment for tropical development in the long term," Kottlowski explained.

U.S. Government launches U.S. $300,000 project to fund UNICEF emergency response initiatives for children in Belize affected by the COVID-19 pandemic
The United States Government, through the U.S. Embassy and the United States Agency for International Development (USAID), announced the launch today of a U.S. $300,000 project to fund UNICEF’s work to reduce the risk and impact of COVID-19 for vulnerable children and adolescents in Belize. During today’s ceremony at the U.S. Ambassador’s Residence, the U.S. Embassy announced the launch of its project to fund COVID-19 prevention and mitigation measures through its partnership with UNICEF. Areas of intervention will focus on: risk communication and community engagement; improving infection prevention and control, including with water, sanitation and hygiene (WASH) services; providing critical hygiene supplies; and data collection and analysis.

Videos

  • Belize 2019, 10min. Great underwater photography

  • Gigantic iguana is king of the roost in Belize mangrove, 1min. This green iguana has found a perch in the mangroves along the coast of San Pedro Island. At more than 2.2m long (almost 7 feet), he is truly the king of the roost in this neighbourhood. Despite having powerful jaws and formidable teeth, the green iguana is vegetarian, living on leaves, fruit, berries, and flowers.

  • Special Edition of Ask the Experts, 2hr. Joining us was the Attorney General, Hon. Michael Peyrefitte.

  • Virtual Press Briefing on COVID-19 Prevention Measures hosted by the Rt. Hon. Dean Barrow, 2hr.

  • Dialogue with the Diaspora, 66min. Belize's Diaspora is expansive and is an invaluable lifeline for Belize! An engaged Diaspora strenghtens Belize and is the key to accelerated development. Dialogue with the Diapora connects decision makers at home with Belizeans abroad to discuss topics important to the diaspora! Tonight on Dialogue with the Diaspora, guests discuss the official repatriation process and the reopening of the Philip Goldson International Airport.

  • Channel 5 Obituaries - MICHELLE DENISE FLOWERS, 2min.

  • Executive Director, John Burgos share details on the recovery loan options for tourism stakeholders available through the Development Finance Corporation, 2.5hr

  • COROZAL #CHINESE COMMUNITY DELIVERS 700 VEGETABLE FOOD PANTRIES WORTH $40,000 TO VILLAGE CHAIRPERSONS, 5min. Our Corozal Chinese Community has once again stepped up to the plate and delivered approximately 700 bags of vegetables to 14 Village Chairpersons starting from the Village of San Roman down to the immediate surrounding villages in Corozal Town. Our Corozal Chinese Community recognizes that there are many people without a job in our villages and have their families and elderly to feed but don't have the means to sustain themselves, as a consequence of the COVID-19 crisis.

  • Snorkling in crystal clear San Pedro Belize, 2min.

  • Road trip to Placencia with friends, 3min.

  • Belize - Piompion Lionfish Hunt, 14min. Yesterday we headed out to do some lionfish hunt with some friends and family. Gotta say we go them suckers.. We got over 300 Lionfish in three dives that we did. Lionfish are considered an invasive specie and are not natives of the caribbean and surrounding water. Yesterday was not only about hunt but also enjoy since many of us hadn't hit the water from march due to the virus.

  • I moved to Belize for a year.. Here's what I LOVED!, 13min. After living in San Pedro, Belize in Central America for a year I wanted to compile a list of some of the things that I feel make the country so amazing and special. I could honestly talk about it forever!!

  • BHA Live: A conversation on Enslavement and Emancipation in Belize, 1hr42min. The Belize History Association and the Institute for Social and Cultural Research of the National Institute of Culture and History coordinating a virtual panel discussion to commemorate Emancipation Day 2020. The panel was entitled “A conversation on Enslavement and Emancipation in Belize” and was hosted on Facebook Live at 1:00 p.m. on Friday, July 31, 2020. The panelists included the newly elected board of directors of the Belize History Association including Dr. Abigail McKay (Chair), Ms. Ruby Reyes (Vice-Chair), Mr. Frantz Smith (Senior Member), Ms. Ifáṣínà Efunyemi (Senior Member), Ms. Karla Pinelo (Junior Member), and Jayleen Logan (Junior Member). Mr. Emerson Guild of the United Negro Improvement Association (UNIA) shall also provide special remarks.

  • Dolphins in Belize, 4min. On a dive trip outside Goff's caye a pod of Dolphins visited us for a while.

  • Learning the Marimabe, 1.5min. As a society we have avenues that can sooth our worst fears, the strongest one being music and the arts as our favourite Avenue. Almost 1 week in progress as these students resumed last week from the SOE in March, they are back and their skills are still well polished.
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