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6/1/2014 to 6/10/2014
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June 10, 2014


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Last night's TV news on Channel 7, Channel 5 and CTV 3
Also with the most recent Open Your Eyes, and the Dickie Bradley Specials

The San Pedro Sun

PUP present municipal election candidates for San Pedro town
The People’s United Party (PUP) Belize Rural South (BRS) Executive presented the candidates that will represent their party in the 2015 municipal elections in San Pedro Town. The presentation took place during a small gathering on Friday May 30th at the BRS PUP headquarters situated on Pelican Street. BRS Executive Chairman Nicholas “Nico” Varela presented the PUP 7 team which includes Mayoral Candidate Dr. Giovanni Solorzano, a medical practitioner on the island with over 20 years of experience. He will appear on the election ballot sheet for the PUP along with educators Conchita Flota, Marina Kay and Alex Noralez, businessman man Mundo Nuñez, contractor Omar “Canasi” Guerrero, and pilot and current councilor, Gualberto “Wally” Nuñez.

Lobster festival Draws Near!
The San Pedro Lobster Festival Committee is pleased to welcome the public to the San Pedro Lobster Festival 2014 featuring our popular Lobster Crawl Passport Event! This year we will kick off the Festival starting from Saturday, June 14th with the pre-season opening party and there will be daytime and night time events leading up to the Central Park Block Party on Saturday, June 21st featuring the musical talents of Supa G and the Pannerifix Steel Band! Each guest attending the Lobster Crawl is given a Lobster festival “Passport”. In the passport there is a page for each Lobster Festival event; for each page that guests get stamped by the participating venue they are entitled to a raffle ticket. Then on June 21st, they bring the “Passport” to Central Park to the Lobster Festival’s official sponsor’s booth. One lucky participant will win a vacation package for 2 to attend the San Pedro Lobster Festival 2015!!

PAHO/WHO calls for stepped-up efforts to detect and treat people with TB/HIV coinfections
In the Americas, more than 1 in 10 tuberculosis patients have HIV, and TB is a leading cause of death for people with HIV Washington, D.C., 4 June 2014 (PAHO/WHO) — Despite progress by countries of the Americas in reducing illness and deaths from tuberculosis (TB) and HIV in recent decades, 280,000 new TB cases and 98,000 new HIV cases were reported in the region in 2012. The Pan American Health Organization/World Health Organization (PAHOWHO) recently brought together the heads of national HIV and TB programs from 27 countries of the Americas to analyze the situation of TB/HIV infections and discuss ways of integrating health services to expand diagnosis and treatment of both diseases. “Tuberculosis and HIV have been and continue to be major health problems worldwide,” said Massimo Ghidinelli, head of PAHO/WHO’s HIV, Hepatitis, Tuberculosis and Sexually Transmitted Infections unit. “People with both conditions are treated in different health services, making it hard to provide them with comprehensive care.”

Coconuts – the heart of Caribbean cuisine and culture
The coconut is considered a tropical drift seed, designed to survive for months, even years at sea.They are very buoyant and their thick, protective shells are impervious to salt water. During their long voyages they can cross entire oceans, perhaps colonizing the shores of a coral atoll or isolated volcanic island. Sea dispersal is a hit-or-miss method; after a long, perilous journey, other dangers await the vulnerable seedlings. They may perish in the parched sand without adequate moisture or be quickly devoured by ravenous land crabs. But when they are successful in finding a place to plant their roots, the results are beaches lined with custodial coconut trees that help sand from eroding while providing habitat for many shore critters. Found throughout the tropics and sub-tropic areas, the coconut is known for its great versatility, and has been cultivated and harvested for centuries. Coconuts are different from other fruits because they contain a large quantity of “water” which is not only nutritious but delicious, and when immature the tender pudding-like insides are devoured like candy.When mature they still contain some water and can be used as seednuts or processed to give oil from the kernel, charcoal from the hard shell and the fibrous husk can be used for making products such as floor mats, brushes and mattress. The oil and milk derived from it are commonly used in cooking and frying and coconut oil is also widely used in soaps and cosmetics.

Fun in the sun at weekend Water Olympics
On Saturday June 7th, the San Pedro Strength and Swim Club hosted its first ever Sun and Sand Water Olympics. The fun game-filled day kicked off around 12PM and saw three teams challenging each other. With DJ DZL of BumSquad Sounds delivering the best in music, the competition got underway. Games included the frozen t-shirt relay, egg-and-spoon race, sponge relay, water balloon toss, swim relay, cannonball contest, and the sunken treasure hunt. The teams were Buck Furpees, Shark Bait, and ElectroShocks, and while the games did not include a burpee challenge, team “Buck Furpees” sure didn’t forget to remind everyone how they felt about them with their slogan printed on their shirts “I love burpees!- said no one ever.”

Ambergris Today

Security Camera Catches Golf Cart Ram into Utility Pole
A security camera of a private business/home captured this video footage of a golf cart slamming into a utility pole on Seagrape Drive just south of San Pedro Town, Ambergris Caye. The driver of the cart was flung out into the street and the passenger slammed into the front windshield of the vehicle. The accident took place this past Saturday, June 7 at around four in the morning. After the impact, the driver of the cart lay on the ground for a minute while the passenger just walked away from the scene after he regained composure, not even checking to see if the driver was okay.

Inspiration Dance Performance Delivers Strong Messages at San Pedro High
San Pedro High School has established a good friendship and student exchange program with Los Angeles Harbor College through now retired Professor, Larry Heimgartner and his wife, Debbie Heimgartner (current costume designer for the Theatre Department at LAHC) for over a decade now. Theatrical drama is presented to students of San Pedro High, a program designed by Larry and former principal Angel Nuñez, to draw attention to social issues such as drug and alcohol abuse, peer pressure, bullying and rape, among others. On Thursday, June 5, 2014, students of San Pedro High witnessed and enjoyed two presentations, one that dealt with inspiration and following one’s dreams and one on women’s rights; they were presented by Jenny Morrison and Sarah MacKenzie of Scotland.

Pic of the Week: Garifuna Collective of Belize on European Tour
Impressive is the crowd that gathered to witness the Garifuna Collective of Belize as they perform at the Afro Pfingsten World Music Festival 2014 in Winterthur, Switzerland. The cultural musical group is on a European tour at the moment, receiving raving reviews and proudly representing Belize’s Garifuna culture abroad.

Sea Turtle Nesting 2014 (4 photos)
LoggerHead turtle nest at Robles Beach. Ambergris Caye Marine Turtle Program is ready for Turtle Nesting Season 2014. 2014 Nesting season on a good start. A total of 11 nests have been recorded on the Nesting Beaches of Robles and Rocky Point.

Misc Belizean Sourcesmzz

FISHING REPORT: Week of May 31st – June 7th, 2014
Wade was here with his father and brother last week. They took off after some fun fishing and then his wife, two sons and daughter showed up! It’s really fun to see eleven year old Matt talk fly fishing with the other guests. He has the wrap down! So yes, old home week once again as we have had many of our guests return for their El Pescador fix! The Grassedonio family, Mike and Sue and Cutthroat Angler’s own, Jim Buckler. We had big wind which made it tough on our anglers and guides! I was really proud of everyone for making each day a new episode. Big smiles came back to the dock at the end of the day with a ton of support for family members and friends. I know that these vacations you take with your family, or long time fishing buddy, or brand new fishing buddy – all made for good fun life memories. Thank you for sharing your passion for fishing. And thank you for coming to see us at El Pescador!

Ambassadors Present Credentials to the Governor General of Belize
Today Ambassador of Switzerland H.E. Louis-Jose Touron and H.E. Patricia Vaca Narvaja, ambassador of Argentina, both presented their credentials to the Governor General of Belize H.E. Sir Colville Young at the Belize House in the City of Belmopan. Both ambassadors conveyed their best wishes to Her Majesty the Queen and expressed their mission to sustain and continue to develop strong relations between their respective countries and Belize.

NEBL Statistical Award Winners
Kurt Burgess and Ivan Flowers both received top honors in the NEBL, Kurt for leading in rebounds(197), and Ivan leading in steals(2.3 per game). Many of the Ballaz took other places, so check out Sporting Pulse for more. Congratulations! "Burgess is central force in a dominant front line for the Cayo Western Ballaz. He finished the regular season with 197 rebounds in 14 games for an average of 14.1. His years of experience as a top player in Belize was evident as he proved to be a stabilizing force for Cayo. He was able to best his runner up in the rebounding battle by a total of 40 rebounds to safely secure the title... Ivan Flowers is the starting point guard for the Cayo Western Ballaz. His quick hands landed him atop the the league with 2.3 steals per games. His pace help fueled a great start for the Cayo that landed them in a great position to take it all."

Mount Carmel Graduation
Congratulations, Our Lady of Mount Carmel graduates! They had their graduation over the weekend.

Caribbean Export: Special Call for Proposals- Food Safety
The Caribbean Export Development Agency officially announces the publication of the Special Call for Proposals – Food Safety for CARIFORUM agro- processing firms to receive financial assistance as part of the Regional Private Sector Development Programme (RPSDP) funded by the European Union under the 10th European Development Fund (EDF). The Special Call for Proposals – Food Safety is a reimbursable grant funding facility specifically designed to provide financial assistance to legally registered agro processing firms within the CARIFORUM region who are exporting or have the potential to export their products to the European Union. It is a facility for firms looking for funding to support their capacity building to meet the food production standards of the European Union (EU) market. While the challenge also exists among the large enterprises in the Region, it is very prevalent among small, medium and micro-sized enterprises (MSMEs). The allocation of this funding is hoped to ensure that goods of regional origin are produced under standard quality control conditions to meet the sanitary and regulatory requirements of the EU marketplace (such as HACCP, GAPs, GlobalGAP, ISO 14000, Fair Trade Certification, BRC, QF 1000, Primus GFS etc).

Walk for a Green Cayo
Saturday was the Walk for a Green Belize initiative, where groups all around Belize had cleanup campaigns. In Cayo, the Rotaract Club of San Ignacio, and the Benque House of Culture got students involved, and they cleaned up the George Price Highway. The Belize Audubon Society did a cleanup too. "The Rotatact Club of San Ignacio participating in walk for a green Belize. Working with the Department of Environment for a cleaner Belize."

Secret Passages at Soul Project
The Secret Passages art exhibit at the Soul Project is a living exhibit. If you want to add to it, just stop by, and have some fun making art. "This art show, is still in progress people from all over the world are now dropping in to ad there creativity to the installation."

Dr. Gbile Akanni at Octavia Waight
Dr. Gbile Akanni will be at the Octavia Waight Centre today for a leadership development seminar. He'll be in Belmopan on Friday, at the Nazarene Church, and Saturday at the George Price Center.

Channel 7

Gunshots At A Graduation Party
Eight people, all under the age of 30 were shot in just 26 hours in Belize City this weekend. It happened between Saturday night at 8:00 and Sunday night at 11:30. Miraculously, no one was killed in these three separate shootings that are believed to be connected. And the connection is gang warfare - which has reportedly erupted between two powerful rival gangs: George Street and Ghost Town. To tell the story of it all, we begin last night, with the most frightening shooting: wild gunshots at a graduation party. The Diaz family was having a graduation party at the Brown Sugar Marketplace - which is where San Pedro Belize Express is headquartered on North Front Street. The party was very crowded, and at the height of the celebration, armed gunmen strode in and opened fire on the gathering. Reports are that close to a hundred high school students were there, and they suddenly became possible targets for the indiscriminate shooters.

16 Year Old Girl Survives Shot To Head
Vernon was the second female to get shot this weekend; the first one was 16 year-old Corine Cory White, a third form ACC student of West Street. Sometime around 3:00 on Sunday morning, White was leaving the Princess Casino along with 2 older male companions - one of them her 27 year old boyfriend who is connected to George Street. They were in his car in front of the Princess Casino parking lot on Newtown Barracks when a gunman emerged from inside the parking lot, and opened fire on the car. One of the bullets struck White in her right ear - but did not penetrate her brain. Somehow, the bullet travelled down along her jaw, went down her throat, and is lodged inside her chest. So far, Doctors have been unable to get it out.

The Two Shootings That Started It All
And all those 6 shooting victims - may have been tied to the first two. At 10:00 on Saturday night, 28 year-old Sigmond Trapp and 25 year-old Anthony Scott were walking on Kut Avenue, and when they arrived at its intersection with Amara Avenue, a black, dark tinted Ford Escort drove past them. When the vehicle got into range, someone from inside fire several shots at them and sped off. Trapp was injured in the right hand and right leg, while Scot got suffered gunshots wounds to his right hand and upper back. They were rushed to the KHMH for medical treatment. Trapp's father Sigmund Senior, known as Sarge told us he's would not comment or make any scenery because the shooting has brought up painful memories of the two sons, Trevor and Andre he's already lost to gun violence.

How Many Supported "Plant Di Corn"?
Last week Thursday, we showed you the formation of the Rod of Correction movement, a coalition of 11 pressure groups including the unions, civil society, and other social partners who have all been agitating on different social issues. The ROC - as they call it - is a collective designed to concentrate their powers, so that they can lash government on a range of issues. The first up on the agenda for the Rod of Correction was BGYEA's demonstration against the Government, which happened on Saturday at the Battlefield Park. As has widely been reported, President Nigel Petillo and his members want Government to grant them permission to use the 20 acres of road reserve in the Harmonville Housing project so that they can plant corn. The problem is that the Lands Department has designated this area as a buffer zone, and they've ordered that no form of development take place there. Petillo and BGYEA pushed ahead with their plans, and Government responded by filing an injunction against them in Court. As a counter, BGYEA planned the "Plant Di Corn" rally, and the Rod of Correction's membership fell in behind him. It was the first time for the rod to be whipped out, and so we stopped by to get a heat check on saturday. Daniel Ortiz found out more:

Does BGYEA Have To Deliver Those Acres?
And at the crux of that argument with the Government of Belize is that the Lands Department approved 1,327 acres of land between miles 41 and 42. The grounds for BGYEA's dispute is that the 29 acres of buffer zone which they want to plan corn on, and which the government wants to leave untouched, is part of that 1327 acres approved. Now, BGYEA's toughest critics have suggested that Nigel Petillo has simply piggybacked on the issue of availability of land to citizens so that he can justify his attempt to strong-arm the Lands Department into allow them to use the buffer zone for corn farming. The motive being suggested is that he is trying to deliver land for BGYEA's business-partner Sam Patton as he had promised. On Saturday, we put that question directly to him, and here's how he responded: Nigel Petillo - President, BGYEA "The investments that are taking place at Harmonyville is not about an individual, its about the development of that community for its people and for this country. I am prepared to make another arrangement with any other individual or business or corporation or organization who is ready to give back to this country and to its people. I still hold no apology. That individual saw it it fit to come and work with us. We have been crying out to government to come and assist us. We have been crying out to government to come and build our roads, work on the buffer - they choose not to.

Immigration Bogus Documents Queenpin Back To Court
On Friday, the alleged arranger of bogus Immigration Documents, Marleny Castellanos applied for Supreme Court bail, and the grounds that the Crown Counsel asked for denial is that more charges are imminent. Well, he wasn't kidding: Tonight, another case of immigration fraud has emerged which the Immigration Department believes is tied to Castellanos. On last week Friday, 27 year-old Wendy Perez and 39 year-old Abel Reyes, both Guatemalans living on Caye Caulker, handed themselves into the Immigration Office in Belize City. They brought bogus Belizean birth certificates and Belizean Nationality Certificates with them saying that Marleny Castellanos was their facilitator. They, like 8 others before them, claimed that they Castellanos deceived them into think she was getting them through a legitimate and legal way.

Krismar Got Off Murder, But Will Go Back Before A Jury
25 year-old Krismar Espinosa, who managed to win his murder trial in which he was accused of stabbing his fellow inmate to death, got some bad news today at opening of the June Session of the Court of Appeal. The court has ordered that he must face a new trial for that same charge. Director of Public Prosecutions Cheryl-Lynn Vidal presented the grounds for her appeal against Espinosa in the case where Keon Swasey was fatally stabbed while behind bars on Christmas Eve 2009. Espinosa was acquitted on December 5, 2012 when the trial judge, Justice Troadio Gonzalez upheld a no-case submission from his attorney Rachel Montejo. Well after hearing DPP Vidal's case and the response from Espinosa's new attorney, Hubert Elrington, the Panel, which consisted of President Justice Manuel Sosa and Appeal Justices Samuel Awich and Minnet Hafiz-Bertram, ordered that Espinosa must be retried. The reasons for the decision will be handed down at a later date.

Alleged Robber To Jail
Tonight, Trevor Guy, one 3 men police believe tried to rob a store last week, is in jail after he was taken to Magistrate's Court. At around 1:30 on Wednesday afternoon, 3 men entered Delcid Store at mile 8 on the Western Highway and they tried to rob the owner, Julio Delcid at gunpoint. When he realized what was happening, Delcid pulled his own licensed weapon and fired several shots at them. The men fled the area, but police responded quick enough to set chase. Police say that they spotted the 3 men in the Cemetery a mile 8, and when they approached, one of the fired several shots at him. The officers say that they were forced to return fire, and that's how they apprehended Trevor Guy. The other robbers managed to escape. Police then charged Guy with attempted robbery and aggravated assault; he was arraigned today before the Chief Magistrate Ann Marie Smith. Because the crimes were committed with a firearm, he was not eligible for bail, and Guy was remanded to prison until July 30.

Tried To Jack His Ex, Man Goes To Jail
28 year-old Kearney Thompson joined Guy today on remand after he pleaded guilty to assaulting his ex and stealing her purse. Thompson's ex, Stephanie Reynolds, told police that on Sunday, she was walking on Antelope Street when he approached her. She says that Thompson then attacked and beat her, after which he stole her purse which had her cellular phone and $50 cash. Police managed to track Thompson down, and they charged him with theft and harm. He was arraigned before the Chief Magistrate, where he pleaded guilty to both charges. The Chief Magistrate ordered that he be remanded to prison so that she can consider his sentence.

March Was Record Breaking For BSI, Set a Regional High
BSI is pushing to meet its cane targets before the heavy rains come - despite a shortened season. And that effort is paying off. A release from the Sugar Association of the Caribbean says that Belize is tops in the Caribbean for sugar production in April. The Sugar Association of the Caribbean sent out a release saying that Belize was the lead producer with 26,302 tonnes followed by Guyana with 25,315 tonnes then Jamaica with 24,881 tonnes. A bulletin from BSI says that four records were set at the Factory in the week of March 17 - 23rd: greatest number of Tons of cane milled for the week, the highest rate of Tons cane milled per hour for week; Tons of sugar produced for a day and Tons of sugar produced for week. Speaking generally about sugar crops in the region, Chairman of the Sugar Association of the Caribbean Karl James says that "Rain could be a retarding factor for the rest of the crop in most member countries."

President Jorge No More
Saint John's High School and Junior College graduated 325 students yesterday in two graduation ceremonies. And while the students said goodbye to the prestigious secondary and tertiary school, so did President of SJC Jorge Espat. Espat - who took up the job as President three years ago - had his last day of official duties on Sunday. He told us he's not leaving SJC - and he hopes to return to the classroom as an Economics teacher. Espat told us no successor has yet been named, but one is expected soon.

Not Alfonso Ayala, But Carlos Ayala
Last week we told you all about that meeting Danini Contreras attended as the Director of the Drug Inspectorate. We said that it was set up by Dr. Alfonso Ayala; that was an error, it was Dr. Carlos Ayala, the International Advisor on Health Systems and Services at PAHO. Dr. Alfonso Ayala has no connection to PAHO and had nothing to do with the meeting, so we apologize for the mix-up.

Evan Mariano Gets Called Up To the Big Time
3 months ago, Belize's premier striker, Deon McCauley got recruited to play professionally for the American Football Club, the Atlanta Silverbacks. Well, the news tonight is that his teammate from the Belize National Team, Evan Mariano has also been given his break to go pro in America. Rumours started circulating as early as last week Thursday morning, but the Houston Hurricanes Football Club made the official this weekend when they announced that Mariano had been officially signed. Hurricanes Head Coach, Brendan Keyes says that recruiting Mariano was part of a plan for 4 new players which will allow the Hurricanes to "challenge for the title this year". Mariano most recently played for the BDF Football CLUB AND IS Currently playing in the FFB President's Cup.

UDP Trying To Get Past Penner's Long Shadow Of Scandal
Elvin Penner is probably the most scandalized and publicly put down politician in memory. And since his public life exploded into scandal in September of last year - the UDP has steadily been trying to distance itself from the politically toxic two-term area representative. One large step in the right direction was to have been taken on Sunday when the UDP held its convention to elect a new candidate for Cayo Northeast. We visited and found Penner's long shadow of scandal still hovering over the proceedings - Jules Vasquez reports:.. Jules Vasquez reporting UDP supporters of Cayo Northeast converged on Sacred Heart High School on Sunday. Alberto August, UDP Party Chairman "The supporters of this party are eager to come out and select a new standard bearer to represent them in the constituency" The party was hoping to get out at least a third of the 6,200 voters from 7 villages and a part of San Ignacio Town. They had 3 candidates to choose from:

Half Moon Beach Filthy
In commemoration of World Oceans Day, on Saturday, OCEANA Belize took a group to Halfmoon Caye on the Lightouse Reef Atoll 53 miles east of Belize City. They visited the Great Blue Hole, and then returned to Half Moon Caye where they conducted a beach clean up - and though it should be a protected area, it was a mess! The volunteers collected more than 25 pounds of trash is just an hour. This included plastic, foam, glass, and even medical waste including hypodermic needles. This garbage is believed to wash up on Belize's islands form other countries as giant islands of waste move along with the currents.

Channel 5

5 persons injured in shooting at a graduation party in Belize City
There was a spate of shootings in Belize City between Saturday and this morning. A total of eight persons were wounded to varying degrees. At a graduation party held at [...]

2 men come under gunfire near a police station
The spate of shooting started on Saturday. Around nine-forty-five p.m., twenty-eight year old Sigmond Trapp and twenty-five year old Anthony Scott were injured at the corner of Amara and Kut [...]

16 year old in critical condition after shooting on Calle al Mar
Five hours later, sixteen-year-old Corine White was targeted near Newtown Barracks on Sunday morning.  The teenager was reportedly in the company of her boyfriend and another person inside a green [...]

An exclusive interview with Christian Ebanks
Christian Ebanks, who also goes by the name Floyd Ebanks Jurado, obtained Supreme Court bail last Friday. He was arrested and charged in May after the Gang Suppression Unit raided [...]

Ebanks on murder allegations in Ecuador
Following his arrest in May, it became known that he was listed as Ecuador’s most wanted in 2011 for a murder in the Guayas province. Ebanks confirms that there are [...]

BGYEA’s “Plant Di Corn” Rally at Battlefield Park
On Saturday, representatives of the Belize Grassroots Youth Empowerment Association, BGYEA organized a ‘Plant Di Corn’ rally at Battlefield Park in Belize City. The grassroots organization is protesting an injunction [...]

Rod of Correction – member organizations say BGYEA rally only the beginning
The rally on Saturday was held just two days after the formation of a group called the Rod of Correction, or ROC. BGYEA is a part of that group, along [...]

Move over Elvin Penner, John August Jr. is the new U.D.P. standard bearer for Cayo Northeast
Turning to politics…The convention for the Cayo Northeast constituency was hotly contested over the weekend. Four candidates placed their names on the ballot to replace former minister of state, Elvin [...]

Mayor Darrell Bradley still undecided on political future
Will Mayor of Belize City Darrell Bradley run for a second term of municipal office? That’s the question that he’s been asked much more than a few times in recent [...]

Court of Appeal orders a retrial for accused murderer, Krismar Espinosa
The second sitting of the Court of Appeal for this year was held today and the bench, which included President Manuel Sosa, Justice Minnett Afiz-Beltran and Justice Samuel Awich, handed [...]

The Maya Leaders Alliance wants back its stolen rosewood
In May, an undisclosed amount of rosewood went missing from the Savannah Forest Station. It was later discovered that the rosewood, confiscated during April operations in the south by the [...]

BGYEA President refutes claims that he has private stake in planting corn
As we told you, BGYEA took centre stage at the rally on Saturday. The group is fighting for the right to plant corn in about sixty acres designated as a [...]

Valley of Peace farmer says Green Tropics not willing to compromise
The discussion between Valley of Peace farmers and Green Tropics is ongoing, but from all accounts there has been little progress. Ministry of Agriculture testing has indicated that damage to [...]

CEMO says it’s prepared and ready for hurricane season
The hurricane season kicked off on June first, and today the City Emergency Management Organization, CEMO, held a press conference at City Hall. While one purpose of the conference is [...]

A comprehensive evacuation plan revealed
While shelters are ready, they should be a last resort. CEMO has also worked on an elaborate and comprehensive evacuation plan. According to Mayor Bradley, that evacuation in the event [...]

Kaya Cattouse with stats from the basketball court, football field, and cycling on highways
Good evening! I’m Kaya Cattouse, welcome to this week’s edition of Sports Monday.   In the National Elite Basketball League we see game 3 kick off at the Sacred Heart [...]


Broad Day Light Robbery At Money Gram, Orange Walk
This morning, the attendant at money gram located on Otro Benque Road got the scare of her life, when two masked men rushed in brandishing weapons and demanding money. And while the ordeal lasted a few minutes, the incident was caught on camera. Today, police are seeking two suspects in this latest brazen daylight robbery. Selvin Tillett is the deputy commanding the Orange Walk Police Department. Selvin Tillette – Deputy Commanding, OW Police “Police visited the area and there was one Adrelia Marin 22 years of said area reported that about 8:20 two dark complexion male persons with masks entered and robbed her of approximately $6000.00 and her cellphone and made good their escape, police responded and we understand that there were cameras but it makes a little bit difficult because they were using masks but even with that we have two suspects that we are looking for.”

Pharmacy Week Observed In Orange Walk
June 6th to 13th was observed countrywide as pharmacy week in Belize with the theme “Guardians of Health”. The pharmacist’s role has evolved greatly over the last few centuries. Towards the end of the 1900s to the present, pharmacists have focused on responding to managed care and new concerns about the quality of patient care. In recent times, the pharmacist’s role in public health has evolved. According to an international study, pharmacists were viewed as the second most trusted profession after nurses. Addressing public health concerns has been an issue for many years and the nation is beginning to realize the importance of utilizing pharmacists to improve efforts in this arena. And in lieu of the observance week, we take a look at the daily lives of these trusted professionals.

Lousianna Government School Takes Second Place In Spelling Bee Contest
The Lousiana Government School district finalist, Isabelle Swasey is the country’s second best speller. Twelve district finalists convened at the Countryside Park in Spanish Lookout Friday, June 6th, 2014, to compete for the 20th annual “speller of the year title”. It was a tightly contested competition since all the representatives remained intact for rounds one and two with full points. Topping the competition as the best speller for 2014 was ten year old Shanalene Guyap of Solid Rock Academy in Dangriga. Not only did Gayap capture the 1st place title but she also made history by being the youngest winner in all the 20 years of the competition! We’ll have reactions from Swasey in tommorws newscast.

Police Discovers 31 Pieces Suspected Crack Cocaine
A routine mobile patrol in Corozal Town led authorities to the detention of two men in that municipality. On Friday June 6th at around 9:45 pm, the attention of Corozal Police was drawn to a white in color four doors Toyota Camry bearing license plate CZL C 01701. Police immediately pulled over the vehicle which was being driven at the time by 24 year old Paul Massam. At the time Massam was accompanied by 22 year old Jeovanni Young. Both men were informed that a search would be conducted inside the vehicle for drugs and firearms at the Corozal Police Station. And so said so done. At the station the vehicle was searched and police managed to confiscate a white chopstick shell filled with 31 pieces of suspected crack cocaine hidden between the driver seat and the hand rest. The drugs weighed in at 6.58 grams.

Belize Is Ranked As The Leading Producer Of Sugar
A release from the Sugar Association of the Caribbean ranks Belize as the leading producer of Sugar for the month of April, with Guyana and Jamaica closely behind. In a release, these Caribbean Sugar producers had reasonable production of 80,392 tonnes of sugar. Chairman of the Sugar Association of the Caribbean (SAC), Karl James says for the current crop, a total of 218,404 tonnes of sugar has been exported to the EU, followed by 8,863 tonnes to CARICOM, and 5,066 tonnes to other destinations. He continues that up to April, no exports were made to the United States Market. Whilst optimistic about the prospects for the remainder of the crop, James says the weather could be a major factor in the months ahead. Belize was the lead producer with 26,302 tonnes followed by Guyana with 25,315 tonnes then Jamaica with 24,881 tonnes.

14 Year Old Hangs Herself At Home
What could possibly lead a 14 year old to take her life away and putting their family members through an immense grief? That is the question being asked by residents of Ranchito in the Corozal District. Over the weekend 14 year old Vianney Vasquez and her younger brother were left home alone while their father, 47 year old Donaldo Vasquez, went to work in Corozal Town. Vasquez told police that when he arrived home around 3:45pm, he asked his son where Vianney was. The response he received was not good as he was told that Vianney had not been seen since 1:00pm and was nowhere to be found.

Another Chopping Incident In The Village Of San Roman
On June 3rd, 24 year old Joseph West was charged for the crime of murder after 34 year old Giovanni Borland succumbed to his injuries at the Karl Huesner Memorial Hospital. West is accused of hacking Borland on the head with a machete after they became involved in an argument while in the Village of Libertad in the Corozal District. Tonight there is another chopping incident to report this time in the village of San Roman in the Corozal District that has left two men hospitalized at the Corozal Community Hospital. Information reaching our news room is sketchy but based on what we were told by our sources at the Corozal Police Formation an official report is yet to be filed and police are still carrying out their investigation.

A Closer Look At ER's Icy Treats
Last Friday three young entrepreneurs returned from a trip to Jamaica where they were awarded for their outstanding work as young entrepreneurs. They were nominated by the La Inmaculada Credit Union for the third Annual Citi-CMFA Caribbean Microfinance Awards since they have for some time now been part of the programs implemented by the institution. The Citi-CMFA Microfinance Caribbean Awards recognizes the work of institutions like the LICU and of individuals who ensure maximum financial and social returns within the microfinance sector in the Caribbean. The awards are held to recognize such efforts and to highlight the outstanding achievements of these institutions and individuals who succeed under these institutions. We presented the three winners last Friday and today we take a closer look at their success and how they came about to be young entrepreneurs. Tonight we highlight Eider Romero founder of ER’s Icy Treats who won Best young entrepreneur in the Caribbean.


City Emergency Organisation Is Ready for Hurricane Season
City Hall was the venue for a press conference called by Mayor Darrell Bradley in his capacity as the Chairman of the City Emergency Management Organisation. While the conference discussed a wide range of issues including the City’s evacuation strategy, hurricane shelters and CEMO’s collaborations with several stakeholders, it basically was called to inform the media that CEMO is prepared and that their plan has been fine-tuned and is detailed in terms of time, transportation, drivers, shelter management and the likes. Addressing the media houses today was Councillor Phillip Willoughby, whose portfolio at the council includes CEMO. PHILLIP WILLOUGHBY CITY COUNCILLOR “We are prepared as we normally do at this time of year as we open the hurricane season. We’re looking at any other natural disasters, manmade or otherwise but one of our marked accomplishment and feature that in partnering with the Belize Red Cross is the signage that is around the city. If you were to look at where the post office is, the old plaza building, the overpass at the roundabout connecting the Phillip Goldson Highway, you would see outlined, the name of hurricane shelters, other minor details that directs the residents of Belize city and others as to where to go and how to reach where you need to go and as I said, other minor details. The second minor accomplishment to that is the evacuation route; we’ve been speaking to this evacuation route for some time.

Three Cops Granted Bail; One on Remand at Belize Central Prison
Four police officers of San Ignacio Police Station faced criminal charges today in the Magistrate’s Court of that municipality. Elaine Berry gives us the details. ELAINE BERRY Cayo Correspondent “The four officers who were involved in an incident on Monday, May 26 at about 12:30am in Unitedville Village, Cayo District with four men who were retuning back from a wake in Ontario Village and who stated that they were assaulted by the officers and during the assault one of the men was fired at after walking away and was shot in his back. They were all arraigned this morning in front of Magistrate Morgan and their charges were read. 3 of the officers met bail of $800 and they are: Corporal Ricky Valencia, P.C Maxwell Valerio and Special Constable Ernesto Budna. While the other officer, P.C Jesus Marroquin was remanded to the Kolbe Foundation in Hattieville until July 31, 2014. Marroquin was charged for deadly means of harm, committing the crime of wounding and attempted murder upon 19 year old Elston Arnold.”

Estranged Spouse Causes Harm to School Warden
Twenty-eight year old Kearney Thompson, charged with theft and harm, became an inmate of Belize Central Prison today when he appeared before the Chief magistrate, Anne Marie Smith and pled guilty to the charges. Thompson was remanded into custody until Monday, June 16, for sentencing. The incident occurred on Sunday, June 1. Stephanie Reynolds, a 27 year old school warden who is the ex-girlfriend of Thompson, reported to the police that she was walking on Antelope Street when she was approached by Thompson who beat her then stole her purse which contained her cell phone and 50 dollars . Reynolds was given a medico-legal form and she was taken to Karl Heusner Hospital. The doctor who examined and treated her classified her injuries as harm. She had injuries to her elbow, her finger and the side of her face.

Police Nabs Suspected Robber
Trevor Guy, one of three persons who police believe attempted to rob Delcid Store at mile 8 on George Price Highway, was charged with attempted robbery and aggravated assault when he appeared today before the chief magistrate, Anne Marie Smith. Guy pled not guilty to the charges. He was remanded into custody until July 30. The incident occurred around 1:30 p.m. on Wednesday, June 4. Julio Delcid, the owner of the store, reported to the police that while he was in his store, three persons entered, one of them armed with a firearm. Delcid said the gunman pointed a pistol at him and he drew his licensed firearm and fired several shots. The culprits fled and Delcid made a report. The police responded quickly and located the suspects in the cemetery at mile 8. The police reported that as they approached one of the suspects fired shots at them and they returned fire. As a result, they apprehended Guy but the other two suspects managed to escape.

Guatemalans with Fake Nationality Documents Surrender to Police
Two Guatemalans, who were allegedly furnished with Belizean birth certificates by Marleny Castellanos, were charged with two counts of using a document that they are not entitled to use when they appeared today before Magistrate Dale Cayetano. They are 27 year old Wendy Perez and 39 year old Abel Reyes. They pled guilty to the charges and they were fined one thousand dollars for each offence. They were ordered to pay forthwith. If they default on payment they will serve three months for each offence. The sentences are to run concurrently. On Friday, June 6, Perez and Reyes, both of them residents of Caye Caulker, went to the immigration Department in Belize City and handed themselves. They both had Belizean birth certificates and Belizean nationality certificates. When immigration officers checked they discovered that they discovered that the names of the persons on the birth certificates were not the name of the biological mothers of Perez and Reyes. As a result, their Belizean nationality certificates were cancelled. Castellanos , who is believed to the supplier of the birth certificates, is currently remanded to prison on several immigration charges and more charges are expected to follow.

Director of Public Prosecutions Wins Appeal Against Accused Murderer
An appeal by the Director of Public Prosecutions, Cheryl-Lyn Vidal, of the case of 25 year old Krismar Espinosa, who was acquitted of the murder of Keon Swasey, was allowed today by Belize Court of Appeal. The judges of Belize Court of Appeal ruled that the ruling of the trial judge, Justice John Gonzalez, and the acquittal be set aside and a retrial on a charge of murder be before a judge other than Justice Gonzalez. The judges of Belize Court of Appeal will give their reasons in writing at a later date. Espinosa, a resident of Orange Walk, was charged with murder after Swasey was fatally stabbed on December 24, 2009, at Belize Central Prison. At the time Espinosa was remanded on a charge of murder for the death of his girlfriend. At the trial which began on November 26, 2012 and ended on December 5, 2012, Espinosa’s attorney, Rachel Montejo, had submitted that Espinosa did not have a case to answer due to insufficient evidence. Justice Gonzalez upheld the submission and directed the jury to return a formal verdict of not guilty. The DPP had appealed on the ground that the circumstantial evidence was sufficient to go to the jury.

NGOs and Unions Join Hands Against Government of Belize
BGYEA: The Belize Grass roots Empowerment Association is currently fighting an injunction brought by the Government of Belize to prohibit them from disturbing the buffer area of Harmonyville. That’s a problem for BGYEA and Nigel Petillo because he was planning to plant corn in the buffer through an agreement with investor Sam Patten. The facts are that Petillo requested that the Lands and Survey Department removed squatting immigrants from the buffer zone. But when the Land Commissioner found out that Petillo had entered in a private agreement with Sam Patten, an order of cease and decease was issued. Petillo made his media runs stating that the idea was to plant corn in the buffer zone in order to raise funds for infrastructural works in Harmonyville. However, the Lands and Survey Department didn’t buy it and so an injunction was obtain to prohibit BGYEA from planting corn. On Saturday, BGYEA held their “Plant DI Corn” Rally at Battle Field Park and since they became a member of the newly form Rod of Correction, BGYEA was not alone. Love News was out there and here is the story. GEOVANNI BRACKETT President Citizens Organized for Liberty Through Action “You ask yourself the question, why isn’t the government going after the Guatemalans who are illegally farming our land in the buffer zone, in the thousands of acres. “

University Students Benefit from Workshop on Intellectual Property Law
A three week workshop focusing on intellectual property rights began today in Belmopan. Correspondent Angelica Cruz reports: ANGELICA CRUZ Western Correspondent Love News “The University of Belize in collaboration with a team of girls from Middleton Tennessee State University is having a 3-week workshop at the UB Jaguar Auditorium in Belmopan. This workshop is based on intellectual property law and global entertainment transaction. Deborah Watson, Attorney and university Professor spoke to Love News and told us how it will benefit our country.” DEBORAH WATSON Professor Middleton Tennessee State University “The purpose of the international classroom initiative is to join forces between the creative community and Belize and Central America and the United States program where I am a professor at Middleton State University and our department of recording industry within the college of mass communication. What we hope to do is to bring what strengths and knowledge we have to the incredible talent within the Belizean community. To help foster a greater infrastructure for exploitation in the best use of the word and opportunity to have a professional life as a musician, or as a film maker, or as a book writer, or anyone in the art to assist in the process of bringing knowledge and a more mature market skills that the US has developed into this incredible opportunity with very talented young people in Belize. So I am very grateful to Stone Tree Records, who is our partner in the memorandum of understanding, Ivan Duran in particular and also the University of Belize.”


God Gives Away Salvation to a Repented Soul
This week’s Bible verse is taken from Psalm 32: 5 “I have acknowledged my sin to you and my injustice I have not concealed. …and you have forgiven the wickedness of my sin”.

Elvin Penner’s Replacement as Standard Bearer is John August
Former Minister of State Elvin Penner will be replaced by the current Mayor of San Ignacio John August Jr. as the UDP Standard Bearer for the Cayo North East Constituency in the next general elections. On Sunday, June 8th, more than a thousand UDP supporters came out to vote...

Three Shootings in Belize City Over the Weekend
Police are investigating three separate shooting incidents in the Old Capital this weekend, which left eight persons injured, two critically. We begin on Saturday night around 9:45 p.m., when 28 year old Sigmund Trapp and 25 year old Anthony Scott, both residents of Belize City, were walking on Kut...

Two Teenagers Detained for Stabbing a Man
In other police news, Gumercindo Pop is receiving treatment at the Western Regional Hospital, in Belmopan after a stabbing incident at Billy White Village, Cayo District, which involved 18 year old Santos Angel Chacon and a 15 year old minor. According to reports, on Saturday, June 7th, at about...

Krismar Espinoza to be Retried for Murder
The Court of Appeal began its second session for 2014 this morning with criminal appeals. This afternoon, it ordered ]25 year old Krismar Espinoza of Orange Walk Town to be retried at the Supreme Court before a different judge for murder. Espinoza was accused of the stabbing death of...

Money Gram Robbed in Orange Walk
There was an armed robbery in Orange Walk earlier today. According to police at about 8:35 pm two armed men of Creole descent, wearing masks, broke into the office of Money Gram located in Otro Benque, Orange Walk Town and stole an estimated $6,000 and a cell phone. The...

Image Store Robbed on Albert Street
In Belize there was another armed robbery. According to police reports on Sunday afternoon, Indian Supervisor for Image Store located on Albert Street, Belize City was inside his work place along with two other co-workers when two male persons entered the business establishment; one armed with a handgun. They...

Trevor Guy Charged with Attempted Robbery of Store
A shopkeeper had to fight fire with fire last week and as a result police have charged Trevor Guy with attempted robbery and aggravated assault on Julio del Cid, the owner of the Del Cid Store at Mile 8 on the George Price Highway. Guy is alleged, along with...

More Illegal Certificates Uncovered in Caye Caulker
Two individuals who say they were assisted by Marleny Castellanos to illegally obtain Belizean documentation came forward and turned themselves in to police last week. They are Caye Caulker residents and Guatemalan citizens Wendy Perez, 27, and Abel Ruiz Reyes, 39. They both appeared in Magistrate’s Court today before...

Arson Suspected in Corozal
There are reports of a possible arson in the Northern District of Corozal. According to woman Police Constable Rosario Romero, Resident of Libertad village, at about 3:30 a.m. she was awaken by her one month old son and when she got up she saw flames outside her house. Upon...

Penner Recall Petitioners Not Allowed to Vote?
But while over a thousand supporters came out to vote during Sunday’s UDP convention, several voters were denied that privilege. Rejected Voter of Cayo Northeast UDP Convention “They refused me.  Dehn no waa mek ah vote.  Dehn seh that da becaw dehn she me gawn sign the PUP ballaet. ...

Thousands Attend Global Day of Prayer Nationwide
This past Sunday was celebrated on the Christian calendar “Pentecost Sunday” the day when the Holy Spirit descended on the disciples as they were gathered together in the upper room for prayer. Since the year 2000, a movement of prayer which started in South Africa, has seen millions of Christians from different...

Caye Caulker Chronicles

20 Kids Receive Holy Communion
On Sunday, June 8, 2014, twenty children from the Caye Caulker R.C. School received their First Holy Communion. Holy Communion is one of the seven sacraments ascribed to by the Catholic church. Congratulations to all the children on this religious milestone.

More Caye Caulker Residents Are Caught With Fake Nationality Documents
In May of this year (2014), over 10 persons were rounded up in Caye Caulker for being in possession of fake nationality documents. According to the ten persons, the person who helped them acquire the fake documents are one Marleny Castellanos and one Well, the immigration net did not end there. Two other Guatemalan residents living in Caye Caulker have surrendered themselves to police. They are claiming they did not know that the documents provided to them by the said Castellanos were bogus. 27 year old Wendy Perez and 39 year old Abel Reyes were formally charged with two counts of using a document which they were not entitled to. They pled guilty to the charges and were fined one thousand dollars each. The fines are payable forthwith, or in default they face three months imprisonment.

Patrick JonesPJ

Krismar Espinoza to be retried for murder
The Court of Appeal began its second session for 2014 this morning with criminal appeals. This afternoon, it ordered 25 year old Krismar Espinoza of Orange Walk Town to be retried at the Supreme Court before a different judge for murder. Espinoza was accused of the stabbing death […]

Trevor Guy charged with attempted robbery of store
A shopkeeper had to fight fire with fire last week and as a result police have charged Trevor Guy with attempted robbery and aggravated assault on Julio del Cid, the owner of the Del Cid Store at Mile 8 on the George Price Highway. Guy is alleged, along […]

More illegal nationality certificates uncovered on Caye Caulker
Two individuals who say they were assisted by Marleny Castellanos to illegally obtain Belizean documentation came forward and turned themselves in to police last week. They are Caye Caulker residents and Guatemalan citizens Wendy Perez, 27, and Abel Ruiz Reyes, 39. They both appeared in Magistrate’s Court today […]

School warden attacked on street by ex-partner
28 year old Kearney Thompson of Belize City pleaded guilty to stealing his former girlfriend’s purse and attacking her on the street on June 1, 2014. He will be sentenced next Monday, June 16, by Chief Magistrate Ann-Marie Smith on charges of theft and harm. 27 year old school […]

Maya Leaders Alliance wants to know what happened to Toledo rosewood
The Maya of Medina Bank in the Toledo District say a large batch of rosewood which they held under protection was illegally confiscated by the Forest Department and has subsequently disappeared. We spoke to Cristina Coc of the Maya Leaders Alliance on Saturday during the Plant Di Corn […]

City gets ready for hurricane season
The 2014 hurricane season has begun. Are you ready? The Belize City Council and its Central Emergency Management Organization (CEMO) say they are, and want residents to be as well. Today Belize City Mayor and CEMO chairperson Darrell Bradley and City Councilor with responsibility for emergency management Philip […]

A bloody weekend in Belize City leaves two people in critical condition
Between Friday night and 12:30 this morning, gun violence in Belize City sent no less than 8 people to the emergency room. Two of the shooting victims are listed in critical condition. Starting with the most recent … five people were injured in a shooting incident late […]

Teenage girl commits suicide in Corozal
A Corozal family is going through immense grief after a 14 year old girl committed suicide over the weekend. Vianney Vasquez, according to reports, ended her life on Sunday afternoon by hanging herself from a beam in a house in her parents’ yard in Ranchito Village, Corozal. […]

New ambassadors from Switzerland and Argentina
Two new diplomats have been welcomed to the ranks Belize’s Diplomatic Corps. They are Patricia Vaca Narvaja and Louis-Jose Touron. According to a brief statement from the Government Press Office, Ambassador Touron is the new representative of Switzerland in Belize, while Ambassador Narvaja is Argentina’s new top diplomat in Belmopan. Both ambassadors presented their credentials to Governor General Sir Colville Young t Belize House in Belmopan, expressing their desire to continue and develop strong diplomatic and bilateral relations between their respective nations and Belize.

Dangriga celebrates World Day of Prayer
Approximately 500 people made their statement for the Lord Jesus Christ during a powerful Christian Parade in beautiful Dangriga on June 8th to pray against corruption, racism, discrimination, hate, and un-Godly behaviour. The faithful gathered near the Drums of Our Fathers Monument on the southern end of the town and paraded through the principal streets ending at Princess Royal Telemedia Park. The energetic crowd joined their voices in hymns and spiritual songs along with prayers and blessings. The organizers were very pleased with the turn out and enjoyed everyone to continue praying for the nation, Education Leaders, Prime Minister and Government leaders. One of the organizers Pastor Evans said that the celebration is to pray against all forms of corruption, evil, and unacceptable behaviours.

Toledo celebrates World Day of Prayer
Hundreds of Belizeans turned out on Sunday at the Julian Cho Technical High School auditorium for the 2014 World Day of Prayer. During the course of the two-hour long church service, the congregation sang, worshipped and prayed for the nation of Belize. Organizer of the event Pastor Victor Hernandez says the Day of Prayer activity served to strengthen the church and believers stand firm in spite of prevailing challenges. The 33 church leaders and their congregations took time out to pray for Belize and its leaders and affirmed that God is supreme over Belize.


A Cruise to Belize: AMAZING Excursions from Cave Tubing to Mayan Sites
Or: Planning ahead- what to do with 8-10 hours in Belize? As I mentioned in my previous post, before my honeymoon I visited Belize 3 times on a cruise ship. This was never part of the plan; actually, taking 3 cruises within 10 years was unlikely, much less visiting the same port each time. As it turned out, each of my 3 visits showed me something Belize did well, and gave me enough of a taste for the country that my husband and I decided to return for 10 nights. So what were these great experiences? First visit: Ruins, wildlife and a change of plans My first trip was on a cruise with friends when I was 22ish. We split up – my friend Zac and I planning to visit the ruins at Lamanai while the other two headed off to Caye Caulker and Shark Ray Alley. Lamanai had captured my imagination as soon as I read about it, from the boat trip down a jungle river to exploring- and climbing- the partially-excavated ruins. My Indiana Jones fantasies were about to come true! (No… not that kind…) Unfortunately, it wasn’t meant to be. Two weeks before our trip, the excursion was cancelled. The ship had a mechanical issue which meant slowing down its travel speed, thus shortening our time in port. We wouldn’t be there long enough to make it to Lamanai and back again.

“What a Fool Believes” in San Pedro, Ambergris Caye, Belize.
Up bright and early yesterday morning and out on the veranda – the western, lagoon facing one on the first floor- with a mug of black coffee (no sugar) and my iPad (the old one, not my iPad Air). I sat out there for around ninety minutes , reading The Times online and catching up on emails and Facebook and then shortly before 07.00 hours I wandered down to the front gate to unlock it so Lloyd and his boys could get in for their day in the garden! With the guys spreading the gravel I then showered, shaved, brushed my teeth, got dressed and headed to ‘Town for breakfast at Estel’s Dine By the Sea where I knew that I could tick off a few of Julian’s photo challenges. Julian’s photo.

The best little Zoo in the World
I have a story to share with you about something incredible that happened in Belize, some might even consider it something straight out of a fairytale book. I’m referring to the Belize Zoo and the tale of its happy ending. Did you know… The latest estimate of species on earth is about 8.7 million species. That’s an amazing number. Some species are still not found yet, now that thought is even more amazing! Unfortunately, many species are not free to live in the wild; to live in the unbridled forests and deserts where the survival of the fittest is the law. Many animals have not been given the chance to defend themselves and win or lose the Darwin challenge. Many animals are taken from their natural places of dwelling to put into cages and exhibits in menageries. In 1982 a National Geographic Animals of Central America filming session happened in Belize. People had some wild animals as pets and they got permission from their owners to be filmed, others were filmed in the wild. After the shooting, the film crew could not get the owners of these animals to take them back – so, then what? Enter Sharon Matola a tall, beautiful and strong intern working on the film. She and her team, with the support of grants, transformed the only way any other zoo in the world should be given a license to exist.

The feeding trough!
By Abdulmajeed K Nunez I expected better! From Genitty, Caritas, Aird, Carol and Brenda Who have been in the school system forever! More so, in the capacity of administrators So they know the constraints as managers But have miraculously forgotten, now that their bread has butter Now that most of them are doctors, sitting at the table of their master They now think they are better because they are now the decision makers We have schools refusing kids You trying to tell me they can’t find space Majority of these parents are single parents Many of the children are truants Pick them up and put them in school Some kids honestly want to go Put 50% of them in school and the other 50% in the army Our children need a structured system We have to find ways to engage them Invest in the army for those who do not want to go to school All the doctors in the ministry of education Are looking to pad up and help their alma maters They do not look at the extenuating and overarching factors They are about helping the Anglicans, the Methodists and the Catholics They are there for their own self interests Hence the reason that it is nonsense what they now suggest Then they are forcing the masses to ingest and digest

The Jungle’s “Elmer’s Glue”
The Belizean jungle provides, like all jungles, special treats to all animals. There are wild berries, cohune nuts, water vines and a Mayan spice called culantro (not cilantro that you know), to name a few. Birds and mammals have a fanatical appreciation for the jungle of Belize. Sure, after all it is their source of food and certainly their home. Every so often, the jungle offers something very different to the universe. An example is the stemadaemia fruit. If we ask anyone to remember the name of this wild fruit for a test, they would, at best take a wild guess on the true or false question or a wild guess on a multiple choice question. However, things change when the local name flavour start enriching one’s vocabulary. The local names give to this particular wild fruit are “horses nuts”, or “Grandfather’s nuts” or the Spanish name “cojotones”. Now, try forgetting those! Whatever name you can remember, we know that toucans and parrots love this fruit which splits in half when ripened exposing a bright orange/red inside with a centre of yellow seeds. Its beautiful and it definitely will get your attention. While we do not consume this nut, we certainly have had much experience as kids using it as a tool.

1. Did the abandonment of ancient Maya cities occur because, simply, the people disappeared into thin air? Answer: No, the ancient cities were not abandoned because of the ancient Maya disappearance. The Maya (descendants) still live in Guatemala, Mexico and Belize. The ancient cities, were abandoned for the most part by 900AD which is at least 600 years before the European conquest began. The abandonment of the cities was perhaps one of the most amazing decisions they made, but after the royalty left these cities, the engineers, architects and mathematicians among them basically left too. There was no one left who knew how to maintain these cities infrastructure. To further fuel the abandonment, these cities were sacred spaces which tremored powerful spirituality that which the peasantry who remained respected with fear, hence it was easier to walk away. 2. Why did the Maya have so many gods? Answer: Ancient people throughout the world created gods out of phenomenon they could not understand. For example, Ra was the Egyptian sun god. Every ancient civilisation celebrated the sun. The Maya sun god was K’inich Ahau (Lord of the the day). The rain god was Cha’ac and K’awil was the god or royal lineage. All the phenomena needed answers. When their science couldn’t explain it, they deified it.

International Sourcesizz

World’s Largest Artificial Reef is being built in Quintana Roo
A team of expert engineers, environmentalists, architects and specialized divers embarked upon the greatest adventure of their lives and took on their hands a once-in-a-lifetime challenge: Building the world’s largest artificial reef. The purpose? Diverting the attention and negative impact of time on the natural ecosystem, and fight against climate changes to preserve the Mexican Caribbean’s splendor, by regenerating the marine ecosystem with an enormous labor. Kan-Kanán is an environmental project never-seen before! It means to turn into the new habitat of thousands of sea species, and will protect the coast from natural erosion. Consisting of a mega project, we currently stand before a fascinating and interesting solution to a strong problem: the deterioration of marine systems, product of climate changes. This monumental artificial reef will be built using over 1,000 hollow pyramidal structures created on a concrete and micro silica base. Each one of them approximately weighs ten tons, and must be placed with extreme precision over the seabed by very powerful cranes and a team of specialized divers.

Stewart’s documentary does Belize festival
Journey Through Music — Rhythms of Africa, a documentary conceptualised by former Third World drummer Willie Stewart, will be screened at the July 16-21 Belize International Film Festival. Stewart is executive producer of the film through his Embrace Music Foundation, based in South Florida. Journey Through Music was produced by SteadyImage Digital Media. It looks at 'at-risk' or disadvantaged teens of Caribbean and Cuban descent, as well as Americans, living in South Florida. The documentary shows the positive impact music has on youth with societal challenges. "We produced the documentary because there was a need to engage in the conversation of bringing music and the arts back into the schools globally. There was no message being promoted and we thought the mission and task that Willie had before him was the best story to be told," Adrian Allen, CEO of SteadyImage told the Jamaica Observer.

At Belize Lodge, Lessons in Coffee and Cocktails
Aspiring chocolatiers, baristas and mixologists may find inspiration in Belize this summer. Belcampo, a 16-room luxury lodge and 3,000-acre organic farm in southern Belize, is offering an artisan-in-residence program related to sustainable food production. The program includes a series of half-day workshops, starting with coffee roasting and brewing classes led by James Freeman, the founder of California’s Blue Bottle Coffee company. Mr. Freeman has been an advisor to Belcampo, helping it find agricultural partners with the skills needed to develop plantations at low altitudes. The classes, scheduled from June 4 to 9, include “cuppings,” or coffee tastings, to teach students about aroma, mouthfeel and flavor. Next in the lineup, in July, are hands-on seminars dedicated to chocolate. Taught by Katrina Markoff, the award-winning chocolatier behind Vosges Haut-Chocolat, the course will begin with a flight of drinking chocolates to teach guests the difference between the original Aztec drink and the milky, often sweetened European version.

Humanitarian’s meet in the Caribbean to review and update contingency plans for Hurricane season
The 2014 Hurricane season is now in session as Hurricane Amanda has now passed and Tropical Depression 2-E is now churning off the coast of Mexico unleashing heavy rains, prompting Red Cross National Societies across Latin America and the Caribbean to prepare for the worst and hope for the best. In order to support these preparations, the Red Cross convened its annual preparedness meeting, held in Belize and hosted by the Belize Red Cross, this past 20 to 21 of May, 2014. Contingency Disaster and Preparedness meetings offer a unique spaces for humanitarian actors and government authorities to come together and discuss several of issues pertaining to improving coordination and contingency planning for disaster response and relief operations, key factors in ensuring rapid and effective response. Jan Gelfand, Head of Programmes and Operations for the International Federation of Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies (IFRC) in the Americas explained “if a hurricane or disaster should impact a given country, the government and civil society capacity to respond is quite limited, therefore we have decided to partner with others through our Red Cross network in order to improve humanitarian response, save more lives, and accelerate recovery efforts”.

More underwater maps to explore in Street View
Back in 2012, Google released some amazing underwater Street View imagery from a few areas around the world. As part of World Oceans Day last Sunday, Google has released some additional underwater Street View imagery that is equally stunning. In partnership with the Catlin Seaview Survey, you can now dive and explore some additional locations in Belize and the Philippines including the Belize Barrier Reef and Tubbataha Reefs Natural Park. The Catlin Seaview Survey team has documented many underwater locales around the world using their 360-degree panoramic SVII cameras, including a growing number of UNESCO Marine World Heritage Sites. We’ll continue to add this imagery to Street View in Google Maps as it’s collected. In the spirit of World Oceans Day, the goal of this project is to expose the world to the beauty of these marine habitats, and to create a scientific baseline record so that their changing health can be monitored over time.

Notes From Caribbean Week: What's New in Paradise?
Overall Caribbean tourism growth is modestly higher in 2014 with visitor arrivals up by a little more than two percent, according to tourism and government officials gathered at this week’s Caribbean Week New York conference, sponsored by the Caribbean Tourism Organization (CTO). Nevertheless there are some clear winners among the 30 destinations that comprise the Caribbean hospitality group’s membership. “The region is up by almost two percent year-over year,” said Beverly Nicholson-Doty, chairman of the CTO and tourism commissioner of the U.S. Virgin Islands, at a meeting with media during the conference. “And as a hotelier myself I know how important RevPAR [revenue per available room] is and that is increasing as well. We really are very positive about the forecast.” Indeed, several destinations report tourist arrival growth of more than five percent year-over-year for the first quarter of 2014 according to CTO Tourist data released this week show. The winners include Antigua and Barbuda (up 5.8 percent), Belize (9 percent), the British Virgin Islands (10.7 percent), the Cayman Islands (9 percent), the Dominican Republic (6.1 percent), Montserrat (24.9 percent) and St. Lucia (5.4 percent). In negative territory are Curacao (down 4.3 percent) and surprisingly, Grenada (down 5.5 percent).

35 Clearest Waters In The World To Swim In Before You Die – Readers Choice
Ambergris Caye Belize is not only the most popular island in the world but also one of the top places to swim in clear waters according to Daily News Dig, a popular website on the Internet. The article states: Ambergris Caye is the largest island in Belize, and the main destination for travelers to this western Caribbean nation. The weather is mild, the beaches are beautiful, and the history is rich, Belize is a land of swaying palm trees and colorful sunsets.


Video: Kan Kanán: The Guardian of the Caribbean, 3min.

Video: Golf Cart Crashes into Utility Pole, 1min.
A security camera of a private business/home captured this video footage of a golf cart slamming into a utility pole on Seagrape Drive just south of San Pedro Town, Ambergris Caye. The driver of the cart was flung out into the street and the passenger slammed into the front windshield of the vehicle.

Video: Best of America by Horse Back Interviews with Tom Seay and John Carr, 20min.
Lively interviews with Tom Seay host of Best of America by Horseback and John Carr from Banana Bank in Belize

Video: Best of Amercia by Horseback interviews with Tom Seay and John Carr, 30min.
Lively and fun interviews with Tom Seay the host of Best of America by Horseback and John Carr from Banana Bank in Belize.

Video: Belize Fisheries authorites launch drones, 4min.
Chief Coxswain Michael Sabal and Assistant Coxswain Calman Hall explain use of the technology

Video: Belize Medley, 4min.
Brief visit to Caye Caulker and Hol Chan Marine Reserve, followed by ten days of camping on Half Moon Caye at Belize's Lighthouse Reef. Activities included: snorkelling, sea kayaking, kayak sailing, fishing, and standup paddleboarding.

Video: Belize Trip Part 1, 6min.
Kyle Liaw

Video: Arrow Blenny Belize, 1min.
This video is shows an Arrow Blenny in Belize in August 2013

Video: WCUOC BELIZE 2014, 11min.
West Coast University - Orange County Global Public Health Initiative Punta Gorda, Belize 2014

Video: Video, Ambergris Caye 1990, 20min.


Video: Belize Mission Trip June 2014, 9min.

Video: Blue hole, Belize 2014, 21min.
Diving Blue hole, Half moon, Aquarium. May 19 2014

Video: James Le Lacheur (as Matt Berry) on the Belize Rainforest, 7min.

June 9, 2014


Click for our Daily Tropical Weather Report.

Specials and Events

Last night's TV news on Channel 7, Channel 5 and CTV 3
Also with the most recent Open Your Eyes, and the Dickie Bradley Specials

The San Pedro Sun

Doctor Love: Mothers and Moving In
Readers, please send your letters. They can be emails, formal letters or handwritten notes. They are edited solely for grammar and spelling. Also, they are sometimes edited for length. Dear Doctor Love, My mother is a woman who must be in charge of her family. She usually does this by phone but she will come […]

Students in Cayo receive certificates from GREAT Program
Some 64 students from the Saint Vincent Palloti Roman Catholic Primary School in Unitedville Village in Cayo received certificates this evening, marking the completion of instructions under the Gang Resistance Education and Training Program (GREAT). Instructions under GREAT began at the Unitedville School in September of last year and ended in March of this year. Instructor Ciriaco Medina, who is Police Constable 1121 and member of the Community Policing Unit at the San Ignacio Police Formation, gave out the certificates this evening, telling students, “I expect good things from you guys, don’t let me down.”

No passenger manifest …are we missing the boat?
Editorial-LogoWith the apparent influx of mainland gangsters who travel to the island via water taxi to conduct their questionable business; many concerned citizens are calling for a mandatory boat manifest to monitor who these passengers are. Although some argue the process is subject to unfair ‘profiling’and constitutes an invasion of privacy for those who use the service, the safety point of having a passenger manifest is being completely lost in the debate. Hundreds of people are shuttled between Belize City, Caye Caulker and San Pedro via water taxi on a daily bases. What would happen, (God forbid) one of these over-loaded vessels was to sink? How would we know who is on the boat? How would loved ones go about verifying that their significant person had gone down with the ship, when the water taxi business doesn’t have a clue who they were transporting? Surely there must be regulations with the Belize Port Authority that mandate this safety measure, and if not…shame on them. I have always said Belize has GOOD laws, they just lack enforcement. It is more than likely that there is a marine manifest policy that is either on the books or has stalled as a drafted piece of legislature for years. Unfortunately the day something disastrous DOES happen everyone will be up in arms. Why do we have to wait for a crisis to happen BEFORE we do something about it?

Wolfe’s Woofer: Psychiatrist Help
“So overall it has been a really good year for us,” Bruce said. “I’m glad to hear it,” I told him. “I was kind of worried about you when you were here last year.” Bruce and Becky always come down from Texas and spend the month of June here in San Pedro. “What do you […]

Award Winning Chef Victor Nal Returns to San Pedro!
When I heard that Chef Victor Nal was back on the island cooking at El Zafiro Restaurant my taste buds did a wild happy dance!!! Some years ago, 2009 to be exact, Chef Vic was awarded the Belize Tourism Board Chef of the Year at their annual Taste of Belize competition. At that time Chef Vic was the man behind the amazing food at Sunset Grill, which was located on the lagoon side of San Pedro Town. Back then it was one of our favorite places to dine, and the meals were consistently delicious and Chef-Vicsatisfying. I’m not sure exactly when Chef Vic left the island to continue his work at high-end resorts on the mainland, but after his departure the restaurant slowly lost its popularity and closed about a year ago. Luckily for us, Sapphire Beach General Manager Luis Velasquez persuaded Chef Vic to return to La Isla Bonita and head up the kitchen at their El Zafiro Restaurant. Chef Vic, along with Sous Chef Danny Tzib have teamed up with Velasquez (who happens to be a renowned mixologist) to create a unique menu that specializes in Belizean, Mexican and European fusion. With an impressive wine list and exotic cocktails utilizing all fresh ingredients and the locally produced Picasso Spirits liqueur, your meal is more than complete.

Misc Belizean Sourcesmzz

Sign of the times.
Pay two dollars an hour to park at the Karl Heusner Memorial Hospital in Belize City.

Marines, airmen build schools, hospitals and good will in Belize
Marine combat engineers are teaming with airmen and members of the Belize Defence Force to build schoolhouses and hospital buildings during Exercise New Horizons. Members of Marine Wing Support Squadron 472, a Massachusetts-based reserve unit, completed construction of a two-room schoolhouse addition here, one of Central America’s largest cities. Now they’re working on another addition at a nearby five-room schoolhouse, including a kitchen and bathroom. Brig. Gen. David Jones, commander of the Belize Defence Force, said his engineers learn a lot from working with American combat engineers. His soldiers, however, may be called on not only to build new infrastructure, but also to destroy infrastructure that’s being used illegally. That can include busting up a runway that traffickers are using to move illicit drugs by air, he said. In turn, the Marines are learning new techniques from the Belizeans, said Staff Sgt. Matthew Houle, the New Horizons site foreman. For example, they taught the Marines a new way to finish interior and exterior walls called parging.

Bullet Tree Falls Animal Health Clinic
Feelgood news of the day. The Institute for Sustainable International Studies vet students held a spay and neuter clinic in Bullet Tree. They have a video from the clinic. The next clinic will be in San Antonio on Saturday, June 21, starting at 9:00am, at the community center. Thanks, ISIS!


Three Men charged For Illegal Logging
By now, we are all aware of the illegal rosewood harvesting occurring rampantly in the South and while this precious timber is sought after for its value, a small scale but significant amount of illegal logwood cutting is invading the northern region of the country. This morning, a joint operation with the Forest Department and the orange walk police landed several persons in custody pending charges for illegal logwood cutting and hunting. Our newsteam was privy to tag along with the officials to the site and filed the following report. Dalila Ical – Reporting At its most basic, illegal logging occurs when trees are cut, transported, brought or sold in violation of national laws. And these 32 freshly cut pine logs is testament that illegal logging is not only a battle in the south. This morning, forest department officials and members of the police department travelled to the New River Pine Ridge area, some six miles deep inside the Crooked Tree Village where the illegal harvesting was halted. The cutters had already set camp and were deep in illegal activity.

Negotiations Between BSI/ASR And BSCFA On Hold Again
Turning to the Sugar industry….representatives of the Belize Sugar Industries/ASR and the Belize Sugar Cane Farmers Association, met once more at the negotiating table for the quantum payment for bagasse. As we have been reporting, BSI/ASR were adamant to give farmers payment for bagasse but the negotiations yielded famers a quantum of 51 cents, but the farmers claim they deserve more for the cane by-product. We can tell you that the discussions remain at a stalemate since BSI is sticking to its guns. Vice Chairman of the BSCFA Committee of Management, Alfredo Ortega, says they will need to consult with the Associations membership to chart a way forward and that it is looking grim when it comes to finalizing negotiations by crops end. FRED ORTEGA “Entramos con BSI otra vez para la negociación del bagazo, realmente hicimos presentación de los dos lados y siempre seguimos quedando en lo mismo, BSI insiste con su cincuenta y un centavo que presento la vez pasada y nosotros les estábamos mostrando un poco de diferencia sin embargo no pudimos lograr de que haiga un incremento de ese cincuenta y un centavo entonces ahora no vamos a ir a una junta general con los caneros para que allí se tome una decisión de que si aceptamos o que será el camino que vamos a seguir para adelante.”

Elroy Bastarachea Remanded To Kolbe Correctional Facility
Tonight Elroy Bastarachea, a resident of Patchakan Village in the Corozal District, accused of 13 charges of obtaining property by deception, is spending his first night at the Kolbe Correctional Facility after he was unable to meet bail of $10,000.00 plus a surety of the same amount. As mentioned last night, Bastarachea is being accused of swindling BZ$23,875.00 from 31 year old Grisel Botes, a Cosmetologist of Libertad Village Corozal District. Botes alleges that she gave Bastarachea the money to purchase several parcels of land. But when she saw that he kept coming backing for more cash and with no land title, she became suspicious and reported the matter to police. Botes has a recording where Bastarachea is heard claiming that he is related to Commissioner of Lands Wilbert Vallejos. Vallejos refuted that statement last night in an interview we had with him. He further stated that the public has been warned about Bastarachea’s rip-off habits.

Department Of Archaeology Holds Workshop For First Hand Officers
The Country of Belize is known for its heritage and numerous cultures and especially for the history left behind by the Maya’s with their unexplainable art. Without a doubt it is everybody’s business to protect our countries heritage. But sometimes there are those who rather rob history blind. Despite that there are no major reports on the illegal possession of artifacts here in the north; the Department of Archaeology is opting to keeping it that way by bringing awareness to the public through workshops. Dr. Allan Moore – Archaeological Dept. “What we are trying to do is to extend our horizon, our tentacles on this anti-luting campaign to sensitize people on our heritage to protect it and more so to interact with stakeholders which is the police, we just had a mini workshop with the police to sensitize them on the legislation surrounding the protection of archeological resources and heritage antiquities and to have them have a firsthand feel on the artifact and try to give them names as to which one is real and to make them interact ,more with the pieces so they can tell which is fake or which is real so it was a good day for the police officers and they enjoyed it and hopefully we will be taking this to other districts.”

Police Department Empowers Citizens On Patrol
An initiative by the Belize Police Department of including members from the community to assist in keeping Belize at a minimal crime rate has spread like wild fired across the country. C.O.P’s, or Citizens on Patrol, is a Community Policing program sponsored by the Belize Police Department. The purpose of the program is to enlist private citizens to volunteer time to actively patrol their community, to listen, watch and report criminal behavior to the police. Citizens on Patrol provide greater observation of neighborhoods, both residential and business which increases police presence in the community and reduces crime. Today Rudolph Orillo National Coordinator for COPS told us more on the amendments done to the program. Rudolph Orillo – COPS “The Commissioner of Police, Mr. All Willey, has empowered the citizens to come on board along with the police to fight the crime that is affecting this nation and other matters of quality of life that are affecting our community.”

Corozaleno charged For Controlled Drug
Two men from the Corozal District have been charged by police for possession of controlled drugs. They are 19 year old Moises Puck, Belizean sales clerk of Paraiso Village and Roque Ricardo Santana 35 year old Belizean maintenance worker also of Paraiso Village. Their arrest stems as a result of a search police conducted at a residence located in the village around 9:00 last night. Police say when they arrived close to the Pimento house the strong aroma of cannabis caught their attention. As they got closer to the residence a group of young men ran out of the yard. But Santana and Puck remained behind and police searched the residence for drugs and firearms. While nothing incriminating was found inside the house, police did find a transparent plastic bag containing suspected cannabis, inside the outdoor bathroom in an old toilet seat.

The Reporter

Colombian government and rebel group set up truth commission
After five decades of killings of thousands of people the Colombian government and the Farc rebel group have agreed to formullate a truth commission to investigate the deaths. The two sides ae prepared to hear victims state their demands in Cuba, where the peace talks are being held. Estimates put the deaths at over 200,000 persons, many of whom were civilians. A statement released in Cuba on the way forward lays out 10 points that will be the basis for discussions focusing on the victims of the conflict. The left-wing rebels and the government have so far denied allegations of human rights abuses and blamed each other for the deaths.

GOB says DAVCO supports oil exploration in southern Belize
Prime Minister Dean Barrow met on Friday with the executive of the Toledo District Association of Village Councils (DAVCO) to discuss oil exploration in the south. The government’s press office issued a press release which stated that the association has put full support behind the endeavor “citing its benefits to education, health and infrastructure in the Toledo District.” But according to the government the association agreed to go further than that and to engage their communities in a series of consultations to gain support for the initiative. The release names Ministers of Forestry and Technology, Lisel Alamilla and Joy Grant, as well as Chief Executive Officer in the Ministry of Technology, Dr. Colin Young as government representatives at the meeting.

Patrick JonesPJ

New standard bearer for the UDP in Cayo Northeast
San Ignacio/Santa Elena town Mayor John August bested a field of three today to become the new United Democratic Party (UDP) standard bearer for the Cayo Northeast division. A constituency convention was held at the Sacred Heart College gymnasium and saw the participation of August, Eduardo Juan and Anthony McNab. The results show that August obtained 975 votes, nearly triple what his nearest competitor got. Eduardo Juan obtained 398 votes, while Anthony McNab received 72 votes. A total of 1,454 ballots were cast in Sunday’s UDP convention in Cayo Northeast. 9 of the ballots were rejected. John August will now go head to head with the People’s United Party’s Orlando Habet in the next general elections constitutionally due in 2017.

National Festival of Arts comes alive at the Bliss
Bliss Center for the Performing Arts was ablaze with talents from all over the country during the national Festival of Arts Golden Performances Showcase. Opening Ceremonies were held at the Bird’s Isle on June 3rd, which made way for the Primary School Students who received golden certificates at their district level to present their talents from June 4th to the 6th. Belmopan Area students showcased their performances on June 5th along with students from the Orange Walk and Belize District. What a delight it was to see the students filled with anticipation, anxiety, and pride as they transformed themselves on the stage with their dancing, singing, rapping, poetry, drama, and musical instruments. Thursday, June 5th was also busy with the 2nd Annual Secondary School Competition.

Belmopan Comprehensive School Graduates 173
The school with the highest number of graduates thus far in the Belmopan Area said thank you and goodbye to 173 graduates during its 41st Graduation Exercise. Belmopan comprehensive School held its commencement exercises with the theme “Education unlocks the world, our passport to freedom”. Proud parents, teachers and supporters gathered at the University of Belize Gym on Thursday, June 5th, 2014 to witness the culmination of 4 or 5 years of dedication and perseverance made by the graduates. The Valedictorian, Susana Petkau, reflected on her years at her great school and encouraged her peers to aim high and focus on their life’s goal. She also received one of the distinguished graduate awards along with Elsbeth Guerra, the salutatorian, and Zaida Osorio, the student who read the vote of thanks.

National Speller chosen at Spanish Lookout
Twelve district finalists convened at the Countryside Park in Spanish Lookout Friday, 06 June, 2014, to compete for the “speller of the year title”. It was a tightly contested position because all the representatives remained intact for rounds one and two with full points. The challenge started in the reserve round because new words are introduced to test the students’ spelling skills. At the end of round three 10 year old Std. IV student Shanalee Gayap from Solid Rock Academy spelt her two words correctly and captured 1st place, giving Stann Creek District a back to back victory as the last year’s champion also hailed from Stann Creek District. At the end of the excitement Isabelle Swasey from Louisiana Government School (Orange Walk District) received second place and Geon Codd from St. Andrew’s Anglican School (Cayo District) captured the third position.

The Cost of Water and Competitiveness in Belize
“The Belize Water Services Limited should live for the people, not the people for BWSL” ~ R Sydney H Belize is blessed with an abundance of ground and surface water….and over six months of rainy season. Our environment is still clean, so that our rain water is very close to pure. Water, like fuel, is a basic starting resource that drives costs all the way through a production chain. Unlike fuel, which we import 100% of…..we have and control an abundance of water resources….ground water, surface water and rain water. This should be used as part of our design of competitive advantage for living and doing business in Belize….once we protect our water resources, no one can take this source of competitive advantage away from us. The Belize Water Services (BWS) Is Belize’s MONOPOLY water and sewage utility that serves approximately 49,000 customers with a total average water demand of roughly 150 million US gallons per month.


Finding Paradise on Caye Caulker
As the taxi boat approached the island my sight was filled with palm trees, pastel-coloured houses and locals with dreadlocks; we had unmistakably arrived in the Caribbean. Instant happiness flooded my heart when I stepped ashore – this was what paradise must look like. A white sandy road lead from the pier towards the settlement. I started walking in my normal upbeat pace. “Where are you going with that speed”, a man yelled at me from the shore. Surprised by the sudden yelling I slow down my pace. Again the man shouts to me, but this time in a much more friendlier tone, “Welcome to Caye Caulker”. I was traveling south from Yucatan, Mexico and decided to make a short stop in Belize and explore the small island Caye Caulker. It lies less that an hour’s boat ride away from the more populated and hectic capital Belize city. The island consists of three main streets: the front, middle and back street. Leading away from the pier is Front Street, seamed with small shops and restaurants. Here is where the crowd initially gathers. It is the place for the best lobster on the island, colourful wooden houses and girls in bikinis and street vendors sell homemade souvenirs and sunscreen in their stacked shops. But as soon I leave this road I can only hear silence – and the waves crashing on the beach.

International Sourcesizz

A Boy And His Jaguar Speak To Children Who Feel Misunderstood
Alan Rabinowitz is famous for studying jaguars. The renowned zoologist and conservationist is responsible for the world’s first jaguar sanctuary, the Cockscomb Basin Jaguar Preserve in the mountains of Belize. His books about working with big cats have sold millions of copies. His latest book is different — it’s not about conservation policy or animal behavior. It’s a picture book about his own childhood. Rabinowitz grew up with a severe stutter, something he had to overcome before he could pursue the career that has made him a voice for endangered animals. Rabinowitz spoke with NPR’s Arun Rath about the book, A Boy and a Jaguar, and why he still finds it painful to read his own story. Interview Highlights On his first encounter with a big cat The first time I saw a big cat was when my father took me to the Bronx Zoo, when I was about 4 years old I believe, and I went into … the Big Cat house, which they had back then — cage after cage of big cats, of lions and tigers and jaguar. And it was after that first instant, even at that young age, I knew that this was to be my home away from home.


Video: Mangoes, 3min.
Variety of succulent mangoes available in the Village of Burrell Boom, Belize.

Video: Setting Up Pressure -- Navy Divers Set Up a Transportable Recompression Chamber, 2min.
Divers from Mobile Diving and Salvage Unit TWO (MDSU 2) set up a recompression chamber on a coast guard base in Belize. I'm on four-month deployment through Central America with the MDSU divers as part of Southern Partnership Station 2014. We haven't started actually diving yet, and I was itching to shoot something, so I tried to see if I could edit something on the less-glamorous side of diving. I hope you enjoy. -bc This video was shot on government time with government equipment, so feel free to use it.

Video: Diving Belize - A week at Turneffe Atoll. Blackbird Caye Resort, 9min.
One week of diving Turneffe Atoll in under ten minutes. Dive Sites include: Coliseum, Oasis, Blackbird Cut, Crab Walk The Great Blue Hole, Half Moon Caye, Aquarium, Stingray Motel, The Elbow, Grand Bogue. Dive Masters: Cardinal, Kenly Williams

Video: Belize - BV Expedition 2-14 (PART 10), 7min.

Video: University of Arkansas Belize Health Team 2014, 3min.
Dangriga, Belize

Video: A Manatee spotted in Belize, 1/2min.
Watch this Manatee walk along the ocean floor, so cool!

Video: Playful Spider Monkeys at Chan Chich Belize - NATHAB ULTIMATE BELIZE SAFARI 2014, 3min.
Spider Monkeys in Rainforest

Video: reef shark belize, 2min.

Video: Belize - Part 1, 3min.
A portion of our spring vacation to Belize. Beach, Boat, Bush package put together by Renee and Kevin at The Farm Inn just outside of Punta Gorda. Filmed spring 2014.

Video: Caye Caulker, Belize (Shark & Stingray Alley), 5min.
Snorkeling on Caye Caulker with Tsunami Adventures

Video: Suya Tours Snorkeling | Ambergris Caye, Belize, min.
norkeling off Ambergris Caye, Belize, with Suya Tours offers a chance to encounter diverse marine life at the offshore barrier reef. This POV video of Suya Tours snorkeling was produced by SNORKELINGDIVES.COM in May 2014.

June 8, 2014


Click for our Daily Tropical Weather Report.

Specials and Events

Last night's TV news on Channel 7, Channel 5 and CTV 3
Also with the most recent Open Your Eyes, and the Dickie Bradley Specials

The San Pedro Sun

Abel Guerrero is the New Town Foreman
Abel Guerrero has joined the San Pedro Town Council staff as a town foreman. Guerrero is now in charge of the upkeep and sanitation of Coconut Drive and Seagrape Drive and the stretch of beach from Tropic Air to Belize Water Services, including the sub-areas of San Pablo, San Marcos, DFC and Escalante. The San Pedro Town Council now has three foremen, Samuel Gonzalez Jr., Freddy Gonzalez Jr. and Abel Guerrero, each is in charge of garbage collection and upkeep in a selected area of San Pedro.

Office Wear brought to the runway at Public Service Fashion Show
A grand audience came out to witness the first ever Public Service Fashion Show that took place on Thursday June 5th at Senor Marlins beach bar. Featuring office wear and high fashion outside the office the event was both entertaining and informative. DJ Chabo kept the tunes coming, as both male and female models graced the runway showcasing familiar uniforms such as the Belize Coast Guard, Immigration, Public Health Nurses, police, firefighters, and several other government offices. The second segment took on a bit more glamour as Foreva Fancy High Street Fashion dressed the ladies up for fashion outside the office. Near the end of the show, M.C for the night Jorge Aldana kept the crowd entertained with surprise giveaways compliments of Foreva Fancy. Public servants that attended the show were treated to drinks and a meal, during the fun show!

Puerto Azul: Belizean Paradise or Themepark
The conservation community of Belize hereby calls upon the Government of Belize to make an official statement on the exact status of proposed resort development project “Puerto Azul” on Northern Two Caye and Sandbore Caye, located within the Lighthouse Reef Atoll. The scale and scope of this project as outlined in its May 2014 international […]

Ambergris Today

San Pedro Sailing Club
The dedicated children of the San Pedro Sailing Club are setting up their sailboats on a breeze Saturday morning.

Misc Belizean Sourcesmzz

Bigabite Burgers
There's a new burger house in Cayo, and it's called Bigabite. They have a wide selection of burger combos, which come with juice and curly fries. They can be found across the street from the SISE Town Council, right next to Dr. Sanchez's clinic. Their house rules, which can be seen as you walk in, are great. Pictures on fb.

“Close to You” in San Pedro, Ambergris Caye, Belize.
On Thursday Rose and I went to Belize City to attend the July Wine Club Social at the Radisson Hotel. I booked seats on the 17.00 hour Tropic Air flight to the Municipal Airport and cognisant of this I had arranged with Caribbean Depot to make the final (well I hope they prove to be final) two deliveries of gravel by 15.00 hours. We’d agreed -Carmen of Caribbean Depot and I – (well I thought we’d agreed) that if they couldn’t be made by this time that it would be deferred until Saturday.

Winner of Adventures in Belize Facebook Contest
Ian Anderson’s Adventures in Belize has completed their First Facebook contest. After a month of competition they are pleased to announce the winner of the 3 nights’ stay for two persons at the luxurious El Secreto Resort is no other than Vania Vasquez from Belize. The contest began on May 7th, 2014 and concluded on June 5th, 2014. Contestants were required to submit a picture of themselves on vacation anywhere in the world and tell them why they want to visit Belize, share their photo and encourage as many people as possible to vote for their photo so that they could make it into the top 3. At the end of the contest there were a total of 24 entries and 1,411 votes had been cast, with Vania Vasquez of Belize, Charles Leslie Jr. of Tarpon Caye Belize and Jessica Hernandez of Belize being the top three contestants who would be considered for the fabulous prize. Their photos and descriptions were then reviewed and after much deliberation the judging panel from Adventures in Belize felt that Vania Vasquez of Belize had the best submission of the 3 and was awarded the victory.

NGO donations imperative for New Horizons completion
If not for donations from non-government organizations, four schools and one medical facility in Belize would be receiving empty new buildings. The Midwest Mission Distribution Center and the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter -Day Saints donated school supplies and medical kits to New Horizons Belize 2014, an exercise that offers Belizean, Canadian and U.S. professionals a valuable training opportunity in civil engineering and medical care. "We welcome working with NGOs - non-governmental organizations," said U.S. Army Lt. Col. Ricardo Gonzalez, Senior Defense Official and Defense Attaché at the U.S. Military Liaison Office in Belize. "It's for the common good." Combined with the efforts of the Department of Defence Humanitarian Assistance Program, the MMDC and LDS have helped make it possible for the school buildings and medical facility are ready to open their doors.

Importing food is damaging the Caribbean: Why no action?
It is shameful that golden opportunities to produce more food in the Caribbean and significantly reduce the astronomically high annual food import bill of US$4.75 billion are being woefully neglected. If this misguided trend continues, the economies of many of the countries of the region will be increasingly imperilled. At a time of very low or no economic growth, extremely high ratios of debt-to-Gross Domestic Product (GDP), and declining foreign exchange earnings in many of the 14 independent nations that comprise the Caribbean Community (Caricom), the majority of them continue to spend huge sums on buying food outside the Caribbean. In 2013, only four countries were exceptions to those with unsustainably high debt-to-GDP ratios. They were: Haiti 21.3 per cent, Suriname 29.2 per cent, Trinidad and Tobago 30.6 per cent, and Bahamas 56.3 per cent. Of the others, Jamaica 138.9 per cent, Grenada 115 per cent, St Kitts-Nevis 104.9 per cent, and Antigua and Barbuda 92.9 per cent have the highest debt-to-GDP ratio.

Invasive lionfish imperiling ecosystem
It sounds like something from a horror film: A beautiful, feathery-looking species of fish with venomous spines and a voracious appetite sweeps into the Gulf of Mexico, gobbling up everything in its path. Unfortunately for the native fish and invertebrates it’s eating, this invasion isn’t unfolding on the big screen. In recent months, news has been spreading of lionfish, a maroon-and-white striped native of the South Pacific that first showed up off the coast of southern Florida in 1985. Most likely, someone dumped a few out of a home fish tank. With a reproduction rate that would put rabbits to shame and no predators to slow its march, the fish swept up the Eastern seaboard and down to the Bahamas and beyond, where it is now more common than in its home waters. “The invasive lionfish have been nearly a perfect predator,” says Martha Klitzkie, director of operations at the nonprofit Reef Environmental Education Foundation, or REEF, headquartered in Key Largo, Fla. “Because they are such an effective predator, they’re moving into new areas and, when they get settled, the population increases pretty quickly.” The lionfish population exploded in the Florida Keys and the Bahamas between 2004 and 2010. As lionfish populations boomed, the number of native prey fish dropped. According to a 2012 study by Oregon State University, native prey fish populations along nine reefs in the Bahamas fell an average of 65 percent in just two years.

Corozal alleged con-artist, posing as a Lands Department employee, rests in jail today. ELROY BASTARACHEA was charged at the Corozal Magistrate court with (13) counts of obtaining property by deception. He was offered bail in the sum of $10,000.00 and the case was adjourned to August 15th, 2014. BASTARACHEA did not meet bail and was escorted to the Kolbe Foundation (jail). Media reports that this is not the first time Bastarachea has been accused of swindling people’s monies on similar lands deals. On Jun 3rd, 2014 Elroy Bastarachea was accused by a Libertad business woman of swindling her $23,875.00 BCY. 31 year old Grisel Botes, cosmetologist of Libertad Village, Corozal District reported to Corozal Police that that between April 3rd, 2014 and June 3rd, 2014, she had given monies amounting to $23,875.00 Bcy to a friend whom she knows for the past 10 years as Elroy Bastarachea of Patchakan Village Corozal District in exchange for pieces of lands on San Pedro Ambergris Caye Island, Belize District and in the Cayo District.

Corozal Drug Trafficking Report
On the Jun 6th, 2014 at around about 9:35 p.m. Corozal Police were conducting mobile patrol on 7th Avenue, Corozal Town, when their attention was drawn to a white in color Toyota Camry 4 door Car L/P Czl C- 01701. As a result, the revolving lights of the police mobile was put on so as to signal the driver to stop whereby the said car stopped on the right hand side of the road. The driver was recognized as PAUL MASSAM who was along with a passenger identified as JEOVANNI YOUNG. They were informed that a search would be conducted inside the vehicle for drugs and firearms at the Corozal Police Station.

Belize Film School Students Open Mic
Video of the day. The Belize Film School students spent a lot of time at the Soul Project while they were in Cayo, and many of them took advantage of Open Mic Night. The Soul Project, which is famous for its Open Mic nights, is open on Friday and Saturday nights until midnight. "2014 Belize film school, students jamming on the soul project stage, after screening Creative Kaos. lots of talent, fun night."

PACT Celebrates 18 Years
Happy anniversary, PACT! The Protected Areas Conservation Trust had its 18th anniversary yesterday. Keep up the great work. In related news, PACT is doing a call for proposals for small and medium grants. It's all about the protected areas management and preservation. The deadline is July 11th.

Western Ballaz Crush No Limit
Congratulations, Western Ballaz, for winning the semi-finals against the No Limit. They defeated them 75 - 57 in an action packed game. The Ballaz will now travel to San Pedro to take on the Tiger Sharks. They date is still being decided. Pictures on fb. "The Western Ballaz hosted the No Limit last night in game 3 of the playoffs. They crushed them, and after multiple technical fouls and bouts of non-sportsmanlike conduct, the refs called the game early."


Patchakan Man Faces 13 Counts of Obtaining Property by Deception
Elroy Bastarachea of Patchakan Village in the Corozal District has been charged with 13 counts of obtaining property by deception. He was offered bail in the sum of ten thousand dollars and the case adjourned to August 15. Bastarachea was unable to meet bail and was remanded to Central Prison. Earlier this week 31-year-old Grisel Botes of Libertad Village told Police between April 3 and June 3 she handed over almost 24 thousand dollars to Bastarachea in exchange for pieces of lands in San Pedro, Ambergris Caye, Belize District and Cayo District. According to Botes, he told her he was employed at the Lands Department and within a month of the first payment she would receive the land papers, which did not happen. As a result Bastarachea was arrested and charged.

Village Councils of Toledo Meet With Prime Minister
Prime Minister Dean Barrow met with the executive of the Toledo District Association of Village Councils to discuss oil exploration in the south. According to a government press release the association expressed their full support for the endeavor citing its benefits to education, health and infrastructure in the district. All parties agreed that moving forward communities will be engaged in a series of consultations to inform community residents and garner support. Mayan leaders have accused the Government of using DAVCO to create division within the communities. Prime Minister Barrow was accompanied by Ministers Joy Grant and Lisel Alamilla as well as CEO Colin Young.

Police News: Drugs and Incest
Last night around nine o’clock Corozal police encountered a group of young men socializing in the village of Paraiso surrounded by a strong aroma of marijuana. Upon seeing the police mobile, the several of the young men dispersed with the exception of Ricardo Santana and Moises Puck. A search was conducted on Santana and Puck followed by a further search of the yard which unearthed a transparent plastic bag hidden in an old toilet seat containing herbs suspected to be marijuana. Both men were taken to station where the drug was weighed in their presence, amounting to 26.6 grams. 19-year-old, Puck and 35-year-old, Santana were bother charged with the offence of possession of a controlled drug. Meanwhile, Corozal Police were doing patrols earlier yesterday at around 10:30am in the Finca Solano Area when their attention was drawn to two Hispanic men in a yard; one was sitting on a bucket and was seen with green leafy substance and a white bag. Police approached the men and found the substance to be marijuana. As a result 51-year-old, Pedro Vellos, a Belizean fisherman was arrested and charged for the 212 grams of cannabis found in his possession. He was charged for the offense of drug trafficking.

BNE Staff Gives to Medical Facility
A staff initiative coming out of the offices of the Belize Natural Energy has led to the donations of several pieces of furniture to the San Ignacio Polyclinic. The initiative has been called, ‘The Energy for Life Program’ and entails a salary deduction from its employees in order to finance the donations made. The program, as recent as this week, has seen the contribution of two executive chairs, a water cooler, several shelves inside the medicinal store-room as well as a cupboard measuring eight by seven feet. According to a release, the donation will add comfort to the patients who visit the clinic.

The Reporter

More clashes precede World Cup in Brazil
Brazilians have turned to their country’s metro system to show their discontent with the high level of priority that their government has given the World Cup, scheduled to open next Thursday, over their economic needs. This time, Brazilians held a metro strike, forcing the closure of almost half of the country’s metro stations in Sao Paulo, creating a huge transport chaos which reportedly resulted in more than 125 miles of traffic jams across the city. On day two of the strike police used tear gas to break up protesters. Workers are demanding a 10 percent pay increase and a new round of negotiations has yielded no tangible common ground. Brazilian police have since said that on Friday, they intervened to pacify clashes between picketers and commuters trying to enter the stations.

Study suggests eating white bread can cause obesity
White bread as a diet staple can lead to obesity, according to a new study. The study was scheduled for presentation on Friday at the European Congress on Obesity in Bulgaria. It does not actually show, however, a cause-and-effect relationship between white bread consumption and weight gain, just an association. When researchers tracked the eating habits and weight of more than nine thousand university graduates for an average of five years, it showed that participants who ate only white bread and had two or more portions of white bread a day were 40 percent more likely to become overweight or obese than those who ate less than one portion of white bread a week.

BGYEA’s ‘Plant the Corn’ rally draws hundreds
The well-advertised ‘Plant the Corn’ rally, an initiative planned by BGYEA (Belize Grassroots Youth Empowerment Association) drew a crowd of not more than 400 on Saturday, but its attendees came from a wide cross-section of Belize’s society. Nigel Petillo, BGYEA’s president and brainchild behind the effort told The Reporter during the rally that he knows it will take time for the masses to latch onto the idea of this kind of activity over national issues. “This is an opportunity to send those messages to the government…there’s a lot that we’re faced with right now,” Petillo added. While he feels that every Belizean should own a piece of land, he pointed to information that suggests that 80 percent of Belize is owned by foreigners. Petillo said that the problems that affect Belizeans cross political lines. He said his struggle is to fight against nepotism and to promote good governance.

Patrick JonesPJ

Men charged for the illegal logging in Orange Walk
Three residents of Carmelita Village were charged on Friday for the crime of illegal logging. Anthony Rhaburn, Wayne Adophus and Herbert Reynolds were reportedly spotted early yesterday morning by a Forest Department and Police team following a tip about illegal activities taking place in an area of Crooked Tree village known as New River Pine Ridge. According to reports, when police arrived at the scene around 6 am on Friday, they found the men inside an old bus. Further checks in the area led authorities to find that the men had four blue neck parrots in their possession. This is an illegal act punishable under the Wildlife Act. The men could not produce a permit to be in possession of the wildlife and were informed of the offence. About 500 yards away, the joint Police and Forest Departments team found 32 freshly cut pine logs lined side by side.

Police say decomposing fetus at KHMH was abortion attempt
According to the Reporter Newspaper, police have identified the individual who was responsible for leaving a decomposing fetus under a patient’s bed at the Karl Heusner Memorial Hospital last Friday night, May 29. They believe it was a young woman who was rushed to the Accident and Emergency Unit of the hospital after reportedly attempting, unsuccessfully, to conduct an abortion, needing medical treatment. The remains, in a small white box, were found by hospital staff around 8:00 p.m. after the patient under whose bed the box was found alerted them. The KHMH says the abortion victim was appropriately treated and discharged. The hospital has since issued a public apology to those negatively affected by the incident, admitting that “appropriate procedures were not followed.”

Plant Di Corn Rally in support of BGYEA
Saturday, June 7, 2014. AARON HUMES Reporting: This morning nearly 300 Belizeans, including delegations from the Toledo District and Valley of Peace, Cayo, descended on Belize City’s Battlefield Park in support of the Belize Grassroots Youth Empowerment Association (BGYEA)’s “Plant Di Corn” Rally. The rally was held in advance of next week’s injunction hearing against BGYEA brought by the government of Belize in the Supreme Court. The group, which is managing a 1,300-acre parcel known as the Harmonyville Subdivision at Mile 41 along the George Price Highway, has been told to cease and desist from a plan to plant corn in the 15-feet buffer zone along the George Price highway. But it says the plan, which features support from an American investor, is a more effective way of keeping the area clean and generating much-needed income to build roads and other needed infrastructure for the community.


A unique gift for someone who has everything
You know how it is exciting to find a unique gift for someone who has everything on an island with not much for shopping? Super exciting. I knew if anyone could help me solve my gift giving dilemma it would be Bruce, he and Jane do Mmm taste this food blog. I popped Jane fb messenger, one of the top 3 phone chat apps, especially here in Belize. She immediately helped work it out for Bruce to do a short notice order and make Peter’s favorite desert Crème brûlée.

Emergency Medical Technician Graduates
Congratulations to the 16 new Emergency Medical Technicians that graduated from the Spanish Lookout Rescue Team's EMT course. The SLRT has been giving courses in everything from Vehicle Extrication to IV insertion to water rescue. They have 100's of pictures from the courses in their EMT Training album. Best of luck!

Arriving by Cruise Ship? What to Expect From A Day In Belize
Somehow, despite being not much of a “cruise person,” I’ve taken 3 cruises- and all of these featured stops in Belize City. I blame the fact that Western Caribbean routes are often the cheapest from Florida ports, but I also find these ports to offer a large variety of things to do, unlike some more beach and shopping-centric options in places like Naussau, Bahamas and St. Thomas. Belize City is a controversial cruise port- both from the Belizeans’ perspective (many in the industry would prefer to attract overnight guests), and from that of travelers themselves. Anyone who frequents cruise planning sites can see examples of the second point- those people wondering if it is even “worth getting off the ship” in Belize City.

International Sourcesizz

You're Putting On Your Bug Spray All Wrong
Insect repellant is certainly a good way to ward off disease-carrying critters (if you're concerned about what chemicals are in bug sprays, we have a visual explainer here), but there are some things you may be doing wrong that could minimize its efficacy. The CDC suggests using repellents with picaridin, IR3535 or oil of lemon eucalyptus -- like Cutter Advanced, Repel, Off! and SkinSmart -- to prevent mosquito bites.

Caribbean youths unite for LGBT rights
British High Commissioner Arthur Snell; Lance Price, founder of Kaleidoscope Trust and other prominent supporters of the Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual and Transgender (LGBT) community came out yesterday in support of the launch of Generation Change — a Caribbean initiative geared towards the acquisition of rights for the LGBT. Hosted at Kapok Hotel in Port-of-Spain, regional leaders in the LGBT community representing Barbados, Guyana, Jamaica, St Lucia, Belize and Trinidad and Tobago, gave graphic and detailed accounts of the discrimination they and other members of the fraternity face on a daily basis. The activists also signed a Declaration of Intent as they seek to share information and come up with a united approach to improving social acceptance of the LGBT and changing unfair laws against them.

Belize international player signs with TPSL club Houston Hurricanes FC
The Houston Hurricanes FC announced June 5 the signing of Belize international player Evan Evimar Mariano that adds strength, experience and a player profile that further enhances the club and league as we march forward toward the TPSL's second season. The player that can play midfield, winger or forward so will be utilised well by the Hurricanes coaching staff with Head Coach Brendan Keyes saying, "The team is very excited about bringing Evan to Houston Texas and he will definitely bring another level of play to our already strong team." "I believe with Evan and three or four more quality players we are bringing in, we can challenge for the title this year. He brings the experience of playing at international level to the team, he has speed and he is a danger to any defenders when running at them." continued the Irishman, "I like his character, he is a pillar in his community back home and helps out with the kids whenever he can. We would ideally like Evan to stay with the Hurricanes for the whole season but it will be hard to hold on to him when the big teams see what he's got."

Gulf low dissipates
A tropical low has run out of time to develop, but the threat for flooding and mudslides remains in southern Mexico and neighboring Central America. The area of low pressure that meteorologists have been monitoring has moved inland and is dissipating, ending the potential for it to become the Atlantic Basin’s first tropical depression of the year. However, the concern for downpours has not lessened. Unsettled conditions will continue over southern Mexico and part of Central America into next week between the remnants of the low and additional tropical moisture. Daily rainfall rates of 3 to 5 inches are likely with isolated reports of over 10 inches in the area from southeastern Mexico to Guatemala and Belize through the weekend. Over the past 24 hours ending late Saturday morning, local time, near Heroica Veracruz, Mexico has seen over 8 inches of rain. The rainfall will act as a double-edged sword. “While the rain can lead to long-term and short-term drought relief, it can also lead to incidents of life-threatening flash flooding and mudslides in the region,” Meteorologist Rob Miller said.


Video: Rio On Pools, Cayo, Belize, 1/4min.
Rio On Pools is a beautiful natural water park with pools, waterfalls, and slides.

Video: Reef CI June 2014, 3min.
A montage of GoPro Hero3 video from the first week in June 2014 diving the Sapodilla Cayes Marine Reserve off Punta Gorda in southern Belize with Reef Conservation International (

Video: Belize Snorkeling, 7min.

Video: 2014 Belize Termite eating, 1/2min.

June 7, 2014


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Specials and Events

Last night's TV news on Channel 7, Channel 5 and CTV 3
Also with the most recent Open Your Eyes, and the Dickie Bradley Specials

The San Pedro Sun

The San Pedro Tigersharks makes it to the finals
The San Pedro Tigersharks Basketball team has made it to the finals of the National Elite Basketball League (NEBL). The home team won their ticket to the finals after sweeping the Belmopan Point Bandits. The Tigersharks won 2 straight games out of 3, with the second playoff victory landed on Friday May30th at the University of Belize, Belmopan Campus Gymnasium. The winner of Friday night’s game will play the San Pedro Tigersharks in the NEBL finals. The first of the three final games is scheduled to be played on Sunday June 8th at 1PM at the Rafael Angel Nuñez Auditorium. Everyone is invited to come out cheer for their favorite team. Tigersharks fans are being asked to wear black T-shirts to show support to the home team.

KHMH under fire again, Decomposed fetus found under hospital bed
The country’s largest referral medical facility, the Karl Heusner Memorial Hospital (KHMH), is once again under heavy public criticism after an abandoned and decomposing fetus was found under a patient’s bed. The discovery was made around 8PM on Friday May 30th after a patient in the observation section alerted nurses of a highly offensive stench coming from under her bed. It is believed that a female patient had expelled the fetus days prior to the discovery, but no one at the KHMH had noticed the fetus under the bed. It was not until a patient admitted at the observation ward smelled something wrong, and called on the nurses to inspect under the bed, that the disturbing discovery was made. According to a police report dated June 2nd, authorities were alerted by personnel at the KHMH and upon arrival they observed ‘what appeared to be residue of human tissue believed to be a fetus in a small white box under the bed in an apparent state of decomposition.”

The Island Academy Graduates 11
11 students graduated from The Island Academy on Friday May 30th, much to the delight and pride of parents and guardians in attendance. Heartfelt speeches by each graduate were the highlight of the ceremony, and after certificates of completion were handed out, the Barry Bowen Cup recipient was recognized. The Barry Bowen Cup is awarded annually to a student whom the staff and teachers deem an excellent representative of high personal values and dedication to citizenship and education. Eric Rodriguez, youngest son of Guadalupe and Guillermo Rodriguez, proudly hoisted the cup on Friday, to the loud cheers of classmates and attendees. Congratulations to all, and we wish the graduates the best in their new venture into high school.

Tropic Air announces new flight and cargo rates
The last time Tropic Air Belize saw an increase in rates was in November 2011, but since then, the cost of doing business across the globe has increased. For that reason, the management of Tropic Air has announced that effective November 1st, there will be an increase in flight rates. In addition, on June 9th, cargo rates will also see a slight increase. The announcement was made by the airline via a press release on June 2nd. Tropic Air’s Director of Marketing Anthony Hunt explained that the new rate is reflective of the increase in doing business around the globe. He said that operational costs have increased over the past few years and as such, the new rates will help the company address inflation rates that they have been incurring. “The new prices are going up in November 1st, but we decided to put out the notice in June so that customers can be aware. The increase is reflective of the additional cost of doing business. Our company has invested in brand new airplanes, and we are constantly investing in customer satisfaction and comfort. Over the past years we have been absorbing the increases of doing business and unfortunately we are now forced to pass part of those increases on to our customers,” said Hunt.

Belize Sotheby’s unveils office on Ambergris Caye
The real estate business in Belize is officially global now that Belize Sotheby’s International Realty has been officially unveiled on Ambergris Caye. Thursday June 5, 2014 saw the official opening of only the fourth office in Central America for this prestigious luxury brand. At the helm of this new venture into top tier real estate market are Shane and Brittany McCann and their partner Curt Fisher. Members of the community were invited to the grand opening of the office located at the end of Barrier Reef Drive. A video of Belize, featuring the tagline “Belize, A Country Whose Time has Arrived”, clearly depicts how the McCann’s have interpreted the Sotheby’s brand, incorporating it into the office and the ethics that will guide their venture.

San Pedro Celebrates World No Tobacco Day
Saturday, May 31st was observed as World No Tobacco Day under the theme “Raise Tobacco Tax, Lower Death and Disease”. To celebrate the event in San Pedro Town, The National Drug Abuse Control Council (NDACC) in collaboration with the San Pedro Town Council (SPTC) and the San Pedro Alcohol and Drug Abuse Institute (SPADAI) held a Sports and Information Day at the Honorable Louis Sylvester Sporting Arena. The purpose was to raise awareness on the negative effects tobacco has on a community, and overseeing the event was Kristina Romero, NDACC representative in San Pedro. A small football competition was held to engage the children in alternative means of entertainment. “Sports are a good way to keep children busy and out of trouble. If children are kept busy then they are more likely to stay away from tobacco, alcohol and drugs,” said Romero. Trophies were awarded to the teams that placed first and second, while consolation prizes were given to all participants.

Ambergris Today

Sotheby's International Realty Brand Enters Belize
Excitement built up yesterday, June 5, 2014, as Sotheby's International Realty Affiliates LLC announced that its luxury real estate services are now available in Belize with the opening of Belize Sotheby's International Realty, owned and operated by McCann & Fisher Ltd. The realty franchise invited members of the community to the official opening of its office in downtown San Pedro, Ambergris Caye, located at the end of Barrier Reef Drive. The firm, which is managed by Shane and Brittany McCann, serves the luxury residential real estate market throughout Belize. "Ambergris Caye is considered one of the most desirable islands in the world," said Philip White, president and chief executive officer, Sotheby's International Realty Affiliates LLC. "The lifestyle offered there is coveted by people everywhere. Belize is home to the second largest barrier reef in the world, ancient Mayan Ruins, waterfalls, caves and the well-known Great Blue Hole. We are proud to be able to offer our services in this beautiful and unique market."

Puerto Azul: Belizean Paradise Or Theme Park?
The conservation community of Belize hereby calls upon the Government of Belize to make an official statement on the exact status of proposed resort development project “Puerto Azul” on Northern Two Caye and Sandbore Caye, located within the Lighthouse Reef Atoll. The scale and scope of this project as outlined in its May 2014 international debut to potential investors is cause for substantial alarm and raises a long list of questions that Belizeans deserve answers to: 1. The last official word on this project was in August 2013 to announce that a feasibility study was going to be conducted on Puerto Azul. What are the findings of that study? We hereby request that the study be made public. 2. Has a terms of reference for the project or the EIA been finalized? 3. The current plans for Puerto Azul include significant alternations to the natural state of the cayes. How does this plan reconcile with Belize’s tourism marketing strategy of “authenticity”?

Misc Belizean Sources

Students in Cayo receive certificates from GREAT Program
Some 64 students from the Saint Vincent Palloti Roman Catholic Primary School in Unitedville Village in Cayo received certificates this evening, marking the completion of instructions under the Gang Resistance Education and Training Program GREAT. Instructions under GREAT began at the Unitedville School in September of last year and ended in March of this year. Instructor Ciriaco Medina, who is Police Constable 1121 and member of the Community Policing Unit at the San Ignacio Police Formation, gave out the certificates this evening, telling students, “I expect good things from you guys, don’t let me down.” Jason Jones, along with Roland Augustine from the Community Policing Program at the San Ignacio Police Formation also joined in this evening to encourage students to continue being good citizens.

Minister of Foreign Affairs and Attorney General of Belize, the Hon. Wilfred Elrington, headed Belize’s delegation to the 44th Regular Session of the General Assembly of the Organization of American States held in Asuncion, Paraguay on June 3rd - 5th under the theme "Development with Social Inclusion". In the Declaration of Asuncion hemispheric leaders undertook, “To commit their efforts to eradicating hunger and poverty, in particular extreme poverty, combating inequity, inequality, discrimination, and social exclusion, and increasing equitable access to health services, as well as to quality and inclusive education; priority objectives which should inform actions of the inter-American system.”

Corozal Police Report
Corozal mobile patrol nabs two men for possession of controlled drugs: On June 5th Corozal Police were on mobile patrol in the village of Paraiso, when they reached a pimento house where a group of young men ran from the yard whereby the smell of a strong aroma of cannabis was coming from inside of the house. One Ricardo Santana and Moises Puck remained behind whereby Police conducted a search for drugs and firearms in their presence. A search in the yard, lead to the discovery of a transparent plastic bag inside the bathroom in an old toilet seat in the said bathroom containing a leafy substance consistent to cannabis (weed). The bag was shown to the accused, they were cautioned and escorted to the Corozal Police Station. The drugs were weighed which amounted to 26.6 grams. 19 year old Moises Puck, sales clerk of Paraiso Village and Roque Ricardo Santana maintenance worker of Paraiso Village were both arrested and charged for the offence of possession of controlled drugs.

Frankie, problem jaguar
Several years ago, The Belize Zoo received Frankie, a problem jaguar from Franks Eddy Village in Central Belize. The residents of that village chose not to kill this amazing yet potentially dangerous wildcat, and asked the Zoo to intervene instead. Frankie passed through the Problem Jaguar Rehabilitation Program with flying colours, eventually finding a new home and new name (Jutai) in Philadelphia Zoo in the USA. Frankie even got a girlfriend named Kanga, and fathered a cub three years ago. Here is LUCHA, the Belizean-American Jaguar all grown up and living in the Los Angeles Zoo. He has become a handsome, powerful and proud jaguar like his father. A big thanks to Tammy Schidmt at Philadelphia Zoo for sharing this wonderful photo with us! We are so proud of Frankie and his family! Courtesy Belize Zoo!!

National Community Policing Unit meets with heads of leading Corozal neighbourhood watch groups
Rudolph Orio, retired Superintendent of Police and Acting Commander of Belize’s Community Policing Unit along with Woman Sergeant Marleni Montejo of Corozal’s Community Policing Unit met yesterday with heads of various neighbourhood watch groups in Corozal to be able to assist in coordinating a public meeting to reactive the Citizens on Patrol Program (COP) in the Corozal District. The aim is to involve the entire community to be the ears and eyes of the Corozal Police Department to aid in suppressing crime and other delinquencies in the area. Citizens on Patrol is a voluntary program endorsed by the Commissioner of Police which involves citizens participating in the fight against crime in our community. Those who volunteer do not have arresting powers but are trained in police procedures, Belizean law and equipment handling.

Sacred Heart Parish Summer Fair
The Sacred Heart Parish is having their annual Summer Fair on Sunday, June 15th, at the Sacred Heart Auditorium. They'll have tons of fun for the kids, including face painting, a dunk tank, shows(including a concert), trampolines, and miniature golf. There will be plenty of delicious food and drinks too. It all starts at 3:00pm.

The 1st ever Healthy Active Life 5K Run will be happening this Sunday morning in Belmopan. The proceeds will go towards Marla's House of Hope. "5K run for everybody but mostly for beginners who want to have a healthy life and they see in this kind of races the best way to start with this new challenge, in Belmopan."

Chicken manure
Hundreds of pounds of good quality manure available immediately! Call Brigitte in Unitedville on 633.2444

Belize City hospital coordinates with US military for New Horizons
Karl Heusner Memorial Hospital has played a crucial role in the New Horizons Belize 2014 surgical readiness training exercises, or SURGRETEs, conducted in Belize City, Belize. By providing not only the physical space to conduct surgeries, but also overseeing the patient selection process for those surgeries, KHMH staff members has helped ensure patient surgeries were prioritized for U.S. Air Force urological and gynecological surgery teams. "The [Belize] Ministry of Health had been the main engineer for us to have this kind of conversation," said Dr. Adrian Coye, KHMH director of medical services and chief of cardiothoracic surgery, about the opportunity to host New Horizons. "Talking with my different services, we came to the conclusion that these two areas were in the greater focus and where a certain need was. ... Those were the gaps that I had identified within our services. "

4th MAW instrumental to New Horizons
Scores of U.S. Marine Corps engineers traveled to Belize starting in April for New Horizons Belize 2014, a multinational exercise providing training opportunities for the host nation, as well as Canadian and U.S. military members, in the fields of civil engineering and medical care. Typically scattered throughout the U.S. with their respective units, Marines from different Marine Wing Support Squadrons came together in Belize as they constructed additions for Belizean schools. "A total of 120 Marines are scheduled to come through by the end of the exercise," said U.S. Marine Corps Chief Warrant Officer Patrick Robb, officer in charge of New Horizons Marine Corps engineers. "Each of the Marine Wing Support Squadrons is broken into detachments and some of them are as far apart as California and Massachusetts." The 4th Marine Aircraft Wing encompasses Marine Aircraft Groups 41 and 49. And subordinate to the MAGs are the various Marine Wing Support Squadrons with Marines currently supporting New Horizons: MWSS 471, MWSS 472 and MWSS 473.

San Pedro Blood Drive
Sponsored by Washington University of Health and Science Medical School/San Pedro Red Cross/Belize Blood Bank Time: 10am – 4pm Date: Saturday, June 7, 2014 Place: Washington University of Health & Science Medical School (Across from SAGA Humane Society and in front of Pedro’s Inn) Give Blood, if you can’t give Blood, make a donation, if you can’t give money, donate non-perishable food. Refreshments will be provided. For questions contact: [email protected] or [email protected] *No appointment necessary

Unprecedented demonstration for right to participation called by civil organizations in Belize
An important demonstration is being called by the Belize Grassroots Youth Empowerment Association (BGYEA pronounced ‘Big ’) and other organizations for Saturday at the Battlefield Park in Belize City, Belize. The rally follows the filing of an interim injunction by the government of Belize against BGYEA that threatens to imprison, fine or take away assets from members of the group if they proceed with a plan to plant corn in the buffer zone of their community, known as Harmonyville, as part of an initiative to provide for infrastructural development for the community. The rally is entitled the ‘Plant Di Corn’ rally and its stated purpose is to act as a reminder that “all Belizeans share the right and the responsibility to sow the seeds of national development”.

Toledo DAVCO Pledges Support to Government of Belize
This morning Prime Minister Hon. Dean Barrow met with the Executive of the Toledo District Association of Village Councils (DAVCO) to discuss oil exploration in the south. The association expressed their full support for the endeavor, citing its benefits to education, health and infrastructure in the Toledo District. Furthermore, all parties agreed that moving forward, communities will be engaged in a series of consultations to inform community residents and garner support.

Dangriga: It's time to cleanup the beach!!!
In honor or World Oceans Day and National Oceans Month, The U.S. Embassy is partnering with the Dangriga Town Council, the students enrolled in the Community Policing Gang Resistance Education and Training (G.R.E.A.T) program, and the Toledo Institute for Development and Environment (TIDE) Belize to bring together over 100 volunteers to clean up the beach area in Dangriga near Y-Not Island, and collect all plastic and glass materials for recycling next Monday. During the campaign both the U.S. Charge d’Affaires Margaret Hawthorne and Mayor of Dangriga Gilbert Swaso will participate and encourage the community effort.

Channel 7

Ecuador's Most Wanted A Free Man In Belize
He's listed among Ecuador's most wanted, but Floyd Wendel Ebanks is out on bail tonight after his attorney managed to secure Supreme Court bail for him today. Ebanks' attorney, Senior Counsel Ellis Arnold, applied for bail before Justice Troadio Gonzalez today, and the approval was almost automatic. Crown Counsel Leroy Banner did not object, and so Justice Gonzalez granted bail of $8,000 dollars. The conditions of the bail are that Ebanks has to surrender all travel documents, periodically report to the nearest police station, and he must not interfere with any prosecution witness. He returns to Magistrate's Court for the unlicensed firearm on July 21. Ebanks was most recently listed as Ecuador's most wanted in 2011, when he was wanted for murder in the Guayas province of Ecuador. He's been living in Belize four the past three to four years where he is a citizen. He was below the law enforcement radar until mid-May when police got tipped that he had an unlicensed firearm in his house. He was remanded for that but is now out on bail because he is not wanted for murder in Belize. Ecuador has reportedly expressed an interest in have him returned to that country, but there is no extradition treaty, and he is Belizean, so…it's complicated.

5 More Employees Charged
Five employees from Yhonny Rosado's company, are facing criminal charges tonight. Investigators have charged them for dangerous harm and use of deadly means of harm on Vitalino Reyes Jr, who remains in a coma. The five join another employee, Leon Gentle who was charged on Tuesday. So, despite denials that they had anything to do with the Reyes beat down, six of Rosado's employees have now been charged for it. Outside court today, their attorney Audrey Matura Shepherd expressed her displeasure with the way things have progressed:.. Audrey Matura Shepherd, attorney "Those maintained yes they were at that bar but they never touched that person. The second thing with that however is that I really have an issue with how police dealt with this case because yesterday I sat with sergeant Milan who is responsible for this case and he had ask if my clients would do an ID parade and I explain to them no and why. These gentlemen were at the bar that night, 4 police officers arrived, did on the spot interview to determine who was by the guy and who wasn't. These guys were cleared totally.

Four Cops Charged For Shooting 19 Year Old
Tonight, 4 officers from the San Ignacio Police Station are awaiting arraignment after they were criminally charged for shooting 19 year-old Unitedville Resident, Elston Arnold. Those officers are 31 year-old Constable Jesus Marroquin, 24 year old Constable Maxwell Valerio, 33 year-old Corporal Ricky Valencia, and 29 year-old Special Constable Ernesto Budna. And while four stand charged, the man who police believe was the shooter is Constable Marroquin. The police have come down hardest on him, and he was charged separately with attempted murder, use of deadly means of harm and wounding. Additionally, he was charged jointly with the other 3 officers for the charge of harm. And finally, Marroquin and Valencia were internally charged with 1 count each of a disciplinary charge. Their deputy commander, Inspector Reymundo Reyes, has been compiling the case against them, and today he spoke with us about how these charges came about: Inspector Reymundo Reyes - Deputy OC "The officers were placed on identification parade. Two of them were identified, then we had to gone through the process of doing a group ID parade. As a result of the results of the identification parade the information was sent to the office of the director of public persecution where we were given the go ahead to proceed and charge all 4 officers for the crime of harm and PC Marroquin was additionally charge for attempt murder, use of deadly means of harm and wounding."

NTUCB Ups The Ante On GOB
Last night we told you about the "Rod of Correction" movement - a coalition of all the social partners, unions and pressure groups who came together yesterday to bring pressure to the Barrow administration. Their first public engagement is tomorrow when they will join the BGYEA "Plant Di Corn" Protest at the Battlefield Park in Belize City. Today, in advance of the that, the National Trade Union Congress of Belize sent out a strong statement saying the protest is, quote, "intended to sound the warning that this National Trade Union Congress cannot sit idly by and watch the executive arm of government utilize the judicial machinery to subvert a process they do not agree with." The Congress has sent out the call to all its affiliates to join in tomorrow's protest. The NTUCB also issued a statement on the Elvin Penner criminal case - the private prosecution of which is stalled because of a lack of evidence.

Employee Stole Major $$$ From Mike Feinstein Group
Tonight, Marsha Gillett, a resident of West Landivar in Belize City, is out on bail after she was taken to court for allegedly stealing from Mike Feinsten's company while she was an employee there. Gillett was arraigned before Magistrate Hettie Mae Stewart late this evening for 85 counts of theft, and the court had to adjourn for a short break after she burst into tears while her charges were being read to her. The allegations against her are that between April 2012 and December 2013, she was working for the Feinstein Group of Companies, and during that time, she stole over $30,000 dollars. No plea was taken because the charges will be treated as indictable offences, and she was granted bail of $9,000, which she was able to meet. She returns to court at a later date.

Guys From Gang Neighborhoods Hired To Pour Cement For New Bridge
One of the most ambitious projects currently underway in Belize City is the Chetumal Street Bridge. At 5 million dollars, it will span the Belize River between Belama Phase one and Lake Independence - and provide a major release for traffic congestion in the city. The project is well underway and is expected to be finished by the end of the year - and a big part of that is the manual labour that is being used on the project. 9 months ago, we showed you how scores of men from different city gangs were preparing the base fill for the road to the bridge by hand. Well today, 60 of them were pouring cement for the bridge. Monica Bodden stopped in:.. Monica Bodden reporting The first big cement pour took place today for the Lake I bridge which will be linking North and Southside's of Belize City.

Deon Bruce Denied At Supreme Court
Belizean Deon Bruce, who is facing extradition to the United States for murder and attempted murder was rejected by the Supreme Court today. His attorney Audrey Matura Shepherd was seeking judicial review of Chief Magistrate Ann Marie Smith's ruling that he should be extradited, and also making what's called a Habeas Corpus application. For two days, she argued mightily before Justice Courtney Abel but in the end, all of the eight points she advanced were shot down. She discussed it with the media outside the courtroom today:.. Audrey Matura-Shepherd, Attorney "Every point we made, we fought for them but it was ruled against us; however, that's not the end of it. I've just received instructions from my client that he wants to appeal the decision and therefore going to submit a stay of execution of the order and submit appeals and we are looking at other options, not only in terms of his case but he is looking at other principles of law that we've discussed that we need to challenge in the courts and I think that as more and more Belizeans will be sought for extradition, ...

Seasoned Swindler Back At Court
He's been well publicized as a land swindler and con man, but Corozal Resident Elroy Bastarachea continues to prey on people desperate to get a piece of land. Tonight, he's at the Belize Central Prison after he was taken to court for once again receiving money for bogus land transactions. 31 year-old Grisel Botes, a resident of Libertad, reported to Corozal Police that between April 3 and June 3, she paid Elroy a total of $23,875. Botes said that she trusted that he was selling her land in San Pedro, the Belize District, and the Cayo District, because he was her friend from Patchakan Village for the past 10 years. She says that instead of getting those lands for her, he jilted her and stole the money. She found out because he told her that he would have been able to get the land papers from the Lands Department, where he claimed he was employed. She says that she's not gotten any land papers.

BDF Cracked Down On Guatemalan Invaders
"Incisive Gallop," it may sound like the name of one of those horses that's running at the Belmont Park Race Track in New York tomorrow, but it's actually the name a of a joint law enforcement operation which was conducted in the Chiquibul Forest in the last week of May. It focused on repeated areas of incursion along the border, namely, Cebada, Sapote and Valentin Camp - which is just west of the Caracol Archeological site. The BDF discovered and destroyed a total of 25 fields of illegal crops being grown by Guatemalans on Belizean territory. 15 of those fields, (approximately 29 acres) were of pumpkin, 6 fields (approximately 90 acres) of corn, 2 fields (approximately 10 acres) of beans, and 2 fields (approximately 6 acres) containing sweet potatoes, cassava, plantain, and bananas. Several recent clearings along the border were also discovered and recorded. A release from the BDF says, that there is now quote, "a substantial reduction of illicit activities in this area which over the past decade have become known to be very active."

Youngest National Spelling Bee Champion ever
Today, the top spellers at the primary school level converged at the Countryside Park in Spanish Lookout for the 20th Annual National Spelling Bee. After 3 hours of competition, 3 students emerged as the best of the 12 finalists. Today's champion was Shanalene Gayap of Solid Rock Academy. She;'s only ten years old, but she knew how to spell "Beau" - as in boyfriend, and "coucal" - a kind of bird. She's the youngest winner ever and she told us how she earned her spelling mastery: Shanalene Gayap "I feel very good and I give all the credit to the good Lord." Duane Moody, Ch5 "Was it hard for you competing? Tell us about the effort you put into it to make sure that you come out on top." Shanalene Gayap "I put much effort thanks to my friends and to the school and I thank everybody for helping me and also it was kind of a challenge to make it this far and I thank the lord for everything."

GOB Turns to DAVCO For Oil Support
SATIIM is sabre-rattling about its contentious relations with US Capital Energy, but the Prime Minister if trying to shore up support among village leaders. A few weeks ago, he met with leaders from villages in the buffer communities, and today at the Cabinet room in Belmopan, he met with the Executive of the Toledo District Association of Village Councils to discuss oil exploration in the south. According to a government release, the association expressed its full support. The release adds that that going forward, communities will be engaged in consultations to inform community residents and garner support. Ministers Joy Grant and Lisel Alamilla also attended.

A Summer Camp For "Turntablism"
There are all kinds of summer camps on the event horizon for idle children and fed up parents, but one of them is truly a first of its kind. DJ Lindy - D wanted to give back to the community - and he figured out that the best way he could do that is by teaching what he knows best. So he set up a summer youth DJ Camp. It starts on June 23rd., but he wants to get kids enrolled, so he came to make his pitch:.. The Camp runs from June 23rd to August first and is for youths aged 12 - 19. The cost is fifty dollars and forms can be picked up at the Bliss center.

Tonight's I AM Belize Profile features Yolanda Martinez, an inspirational teacher from Ladyville Technical High School. Like quite a few of her colleagues, she was looking at another profession - in her case, it was nursing - but instead she fell in love with teaching after trying it out. Martinez tells the profile that defining moment in her career was when she started working with students from Excelsior High School:

Starting Study On Nutrition
A study released by Unicef has shown some alarming trends in child nutrition. It's called the MICS, a survey of the heights and weights of all children under the age of five years old. It found that under-weight children - indicating malnourishment were highest in the Stann Creek District. Maya Children had the highest rate of being underweight at 8%, followed closely by Garifuna Children. We'll have more on this study next week.

BES Girls Are Best
The Belize Elementary School Girls won their second National Championship in Volleyball at the Bird's Isle this evening. They managed to defeat Stann Creek's Holy Angels in 2 sets of 25 to 13, and 28 to 16. Allyanna Musa was chosen as the most valuable female player. In the male tournament, Orange Walk's Chan Pine Ridge Government School boys won the championship defeating Cayo's Howard Smith Nazarene boys. Howard Smith took the first set by winning 25 to 14. Chan Pine Ridge quickly recovered and won the final 2 sets with a score of 25 to 20 and 15 to 12. Naim Reyes was chosen as most valuable male player.

Is That A Factory?
Recently, we've gotten a lot of questions form viewers asking us about the industrial operations that's under construction on the western highway. If you've passed Ontario Village on the Western Highway recently, you might have seen it. We stopped and found out that it is a milling factory for corn and beans owned by a company called Cayo Grain. Right now, it's still in the process of assembly.

Channel 5

Supreme Court upholds Deon Bruce extradition
The legal battle for the liberty of Deon Bruce, wanted by U.S. authorities for murder and other related offences, is set for another round of challenge, following a decision by [...]

4 police officers charged in connection with the shooting of Unitedville youth
Four cops have been charged in connection with the shooting of a Unitedville youth. The officers: police constables Maxwell Valerio and Jesus Marroquin and Special Constable Ernesto Budna, as well [...]

Bruce Valencia says QRT officers have been victimized
As the officers stood inside Columbus Park in front of the police station, they, as well as their relatives, were irate about the actions taken against them. The officers together [...]

5 more employees of Yhony Rosado charged for assault on Vitalino Reyes Jr.
On Wednesday, Belize City police arrested and detained a group of tour guides employed by businessman Yhony Rosado, in connection with a violent assault which landed twenty-three-year-old Vitalino Reyes Jr. [...]

Operation Incisive Gallop; B.D.F. destroy illegal vegetable farms in Chiquibul
In April, Belize Defence Force personnel were called off operations in Belize City. The rationale was that border patrols would be beefed up to detect and counter illicit incursions. Today, [...]

DAVCO supports G.O.B. and oil exploration in the south
Oil exploration in the south remains a contentious issue, as parties for and against exploratory works within the Sarstoon Temash National Parks have strongly voiced their opinions on the matter.  [...]

Incest: 16 year old 8 months pregnant by her father
A sixteen-year-old Belizean domestic of Aguacate Village, Toledo District visited the station in the company of her sister and reported that sometime in the month of September, 2013, her father [...]

Christian Ebanks, wanted for murder in Ecuador, freed on bail
  Belizean Christian Ebanks, also known as Floyd Ebanks Jurado, was granted bail in the Supreme Court this morning before Justice Troadio Gonzalez. He had been remanded for keeping an [...]

Couple accused in immigration hustle denied bail
Marleny Elizabeth Castellanos and Alfredo Orlando Gonzalez, the alleged masterminds behind an illegal immigration hustle, were denied bail in the Supreme Court this morning. They were charged on May thirteenth, [...]

Belize City woman accused of stealing thousands of dollars from former employer
Belize City resident Marcia Marie Gillett was today slapped with eighty-five counts of theft before Magistrate Hettie Mae Stewart. She is accused of misappropriating thousands of dollars from her former [...]

MCC Field closed for much needed upgrade
The MCC Grounds is closed, and it will remain closed for at least the next two months. Now the MCC is the only somewhat adequate football facility in the city, [...]

10 year old is the top speller in Coca Cola National Spelling Bee
Primary school students from across the country converged on the Countryside Park in Spanish Lookout today where the twentieth annual Coca Cola National Spelling Bee competition was hosted.  A total [...]

Louisiana Government School in Orange Walk wins banner competition
The theme for the 2014 Coca-Cola National Spelling Bee is “Go for the Goal!” and annually a banner and poster competition is held simultaneously during the finals. 2012 winners from [...]

The winners of the High School Talent Competition of the 2014 Festival of Arts
On Thursday evening, the Bliss was the venue for an intense secondary school competition in the performing arts.  The challenge is part of the National Festival of Arts.  When it [...]


Visiting American Charged For Coral Damages
Visiting American tourists, David and Michelle Freund have found themselves in quite a predicament while vacationing in Belize. The couple have been detained in Belize for the last two weeks indefinitely. David is faced with “Civil Charges” related to a coral-damaging incident, while sailing, which occurred only two days into their vacation in Belize in May. A blog dedicated as a platform to tell their story alleges that ‘most of the damage was done by Moorings (the boat rental company) when they were improperly towing them off the coral in an aggressive manner in order to conceal their unethical practices of renting to uncertified tourists, failing to provide the renters with proper navigational information and additional safety equipment, and their failure to report the initial incident to the Belize Port Authorities.


Health and Safety Standards For Xunantunich
A ceremony highlighting the signing of health and safety standards at the Xunantunich Archaeological Site in the Cayo District took place on the grounds of the Mayan ruin on Thursday. The document outlining the health and safety standards to be adopted and implemented by the Institute of Archaeology was drafted as part of the project dubbed, Making Tourism Benefit Communities Adjacent to Archaeological Sites. According the George Thompson, the Associate Director of Parks Management, the adaptation of these health and safety regulations seeks to improve the tourism experience in Belize. GEORGE THOMPSON Associate Director Parks Management “Today marks a special day as we take one more significant step in improving the quality of service at our archaeological and tourism destinations. It brings me great pleasure to see us taking significant steps towards our mission which first and foremost is protection and preservation. It is only by ensuring that these communities feel that they are a part of what we’re doing and what we’re managing that they will ultimately have the buy-in that is necessary to move protection and preservation to another level. Today we seek not only to have exceptionally beautiful well managed archaeological parks, as is evident here at Xunantunich; it is really a beautiful environment.


Four San Ignacio Police Officers Charged with Harm
Four officers attached to the San Ignacio Police Station have been implicated after it was reported that they used unlawful means of force upon a teenager. According to reports made by 19 year old Elston Arnold, on Monday May 26th, he and a few friends were returning from a...

Deon Bruce Loses Extradition Case
This afternoon, Supreme Court Justice Courtney Abel declined to issue a writ of ha-beas cor-pus and upheld the decision of Chief Magistrate Ann-Marie Smith issued in January to extradite 28 year old Deon Bruce to Chicago, Illinois, U.S.A., to face trial of charges of murder and attempted murder for a fatal...

Five Cave Tubing Workers to be Charged in Reyes Attack
At news time, five employees of Yohnny Rosado’s business, (Butts Up) have been formally charged with dangerous harm and use of deadly means of harm. This is in connection with last Thursday’s brutal attack on 23 year old rival tour guide Vitalino Reyes, Jr., who continues to recover...

Meeting for Bagasse Continues in Orange Walk
A meeting was held in Orange Walk today between representatives of  the Cane Farmers and American Sugar Refinery’s BSI team. The negotiations lasted some three hours but when Alfredo Ortega, exited the meeting he declared an impasse in negotiations. Ortega told the media on hand that his team needs...

Ebanks is Granted Bail While Castellanos and Marcos Must Wait
Three weeks ago Christian Ebanks, a naturalized Belizean businessman of the West Landivar area, was picked up at home and charged with keeping a firearm and ammunition without a gun license. Gang Suppression Unit officers searched his residence on Teacher Street on May 14 and found a chrome 9mm handgun...

Chinese Bar Owner Charged for Hiring Undocumented Workers
Zhaohang Huang, a 50 year old naturalized Belizean-Chinese businessman, pleaded guilty today to five counts of employing persons not in possession of a valid temporary workers’ permit. He was charged in the same raid that netted two other bar owners on Wednesday night, June 4. In his case, officers...

Belmopan Citco Police and Clean Walkways to Reduce Crime
High level of criminal activities, primarily theft and robberies, occur on some of the pathways that run through the main City of Belmopan. The latest of these incidents occurred on Tuesday of this week where a 17 year old minor stole a woman’s purse as she made her way...

Toledo DAVCO Pledges Support to Government of Belize
A Government Press Release issued late this evening states that this morning Prime Minister Hon. Dean Barrow met with the Executive of the Toledo District Association of Village Councils (DAVCO) to discuss oil exploration in the south. Both Hon Joy Grant, Minister of Energy, Science and Technology and Public...

Belize Attends 44TH Regular Session of the OAS
Minister of Foreign Affairs and Attorney General of Belize, Wilfred Elrington, headed Belize’s delegation to the 44th Regular Session of the General Assembly of the Organization of American States held in Asuncion, Paraguay on June 3rd thru the 5th under the theme “Development with Social Inclusion”. In the Declaration...

Joint Law Enforcement Operation Conducted in Chiquibul
The joint law enforcement operation conducted in the Chiquibul Forest Reserve between the period of May 23 to May 30th lead to the destruction of approximately 135 acres of cultivated crops. According to a press release issued by the Belize Defence Force this morning, the purpose of the operation...

Caye Caulker Chronicles

Fitness expert Luna Novelo Ellis to host fitness bootcamp
FREE Bootcamp with Luna & Samantha! We will be getting our sweat on during a full body beach workout Saturday, Aug 9 and we want you to join us!! It doesn’t matter if you’re a beginner or an expert – all fitness levels are welcome! ***Must sign-up by June 27th*** Date: Saturday, August 9th. Time: 9 a.m. Location: Beach at Palapa Gardens Admission: FREE! ***SIGN-UP REQUIRED TO ATTEND!!! Please sign-up with Shary Trejo at The Island Link Internet Cafe. If for any reason you are unable to go and sign-up please send me a private message and I would be happy to help you.


“Plant di corn!” rally
This Saturday, June 7, the Belize Grassroots Youth Empowerment Association (BGYEA) will hold what they call a “Plant di Corn rally” from 9:00 a.m. to 1:00 p.m. at the Battlefield Park in Belize City to garner support from the wider public in their efforts to pursue a proposed agricultural project at the Harmonyville community which has recently been blockaded by the Ministry of Natural Resources and Agriculture. The organization is calling for support from other local activist organizations, concerned citizens, the business community and the public at large in the face of a court injunction which was sought by the Government of Belize (GOB) late last month to prohibit the representatives of BGYEA from carrying out any agriculture-related activities in the 29-acre Harmonyville Buffer Zone that separates the community from the George Price Highway. This morning Amandala spoke with BGYEA’s president, Nigel Petillo, and he told us about the purpose of the rally and why citizens need to come out in full force.

Deejay charged for having sex with child, 14
A Belize City deejay was remanded to the Belize Central Prison this afternoon after he was arraigned in the Magistrate’s Court on a single count of unlawful sexual intercourse – an offense previously known as “unlawful carnal knowledge” of a girl who is above the age of 14, but below the age of 16. After reading the charge to Elvis Sutherland, 24, who appeared unrepresented, Magistrate Dale Cayetano explained to him that his court could not grant him bail for the offense with which he is charged before a 90-day period has elapsed. He has to apply for bail to the Supreme Court through an attorney. Cayetano also explained to him that no plea would be taken from him, because his case will be heard in the Supreme Court on indictment. After those basic rules were established, Cayetano remanded Sutherland to prison until his next court date on August 6, 2014.

“Rod of Correction” formed to “lash” an uncaring administration
In what has been described as a historic moment for present-day Belize, a merger of trade unions, civil society organizations and activist groups teamed up to create a new movement known as the “Rod of Correction” (ROC) – geared towards fighting the current United Democratic Party (UDP) administration, which has been perceived by the factions as being out of touch with the Belizean people, and contemptuous of their needs. The ROC was launched today at the office of the Belize National Teachers’ Union (BNTU) in Belize City, but was preceded by a solemn joint bulletin which was published last Friday, May 30, proclaiming that “Cabinet seems to have reached a new height of arrogance, or believed to have taken on supreme and demonic powers like unto demagogues.” That bulletin – which headlined “Let freedom…ring…Our democracy on edge”, highlights six major issues that are points of contention for the group, and today, NTUCB President, Dylan Reneau shared these points of contention and explained why the organizations linked to unite and form an alliance to ensure that their voices are heeded on the various hot-button national issues with high stakes for the country.

Not a fetus, but “products of conception” – KHMH
After news broke last Friday, May 29, of the ghastly discovery of an abandoned, decaying fetus which was stashed under a bed at the Karl Heusner Memorial Hospital (KHMH), the hospital’s authorities, in an attempt at damage control, initially refused to answer questions from the media. When questioned on Monday, June 2, KHMH authorities would only say that the matter was in the hands of the police. Yesterday evening, however, the KHMH finally broke its silence and stated that it was extending its “sincerest apologies” to those patients and members of the general public who have been negatively impacted by the recent discovery of what they termed as not a fetus, but rather “products of conception” in their Accident and Emergency Department.

Bar vexed with Barrow over Awich!
The Bar Association of Belize called a special meeting on Monday, June 2, at which members passed a resolution which suggested that there may be “an appearance of bias” on the part of Justice of Appeal, Samuel Awich, in his ruling on the constitutional challenge to the nationalization of Belize Telemedia Limited (BTL) and the Belize Electricity Limited (BEL). Justice Awich, 67, who retired from the Supreme Court bench, was appointed on a two-year contract to sit on the Court of Appeal. His contract expired around the time that his judgments on Belize Telemedia Limited and Belize Electricity Limited were delivered by the President of the Court, Justice Manuel Sosa. The Bar resolution said in part that “…on the said 15th May, 2014, the Court of Appeal delivered a decision in an important constitutional case relating to the nationalization of Belize Telemedia Limited and Belize Electricity Limited in which the lead decision for the majority in favor of the Government was written by Justice Awich, and on the 19th May 2014, the Prime Minister wrote to the Leader of the Opposition advising that he intended to propose that Justice Awich be appointed as a Judge of the Court of Appeal until he reaches the age of retirement [75].”

Puerto Azul on Belize cayes alarms leading local and int’l NGOs
International NGOs – the World Wildlife Foundation (WWF), Oceana, and Healthy Reef for Healthy People – in conjunction with the regional MarAlliance and three local NGOs: the Belize Tourism Industry Association (BTIA), The Association of Protected Areas Management Organizations (APAMO), and the Belize Audubon Society, have issued a joint statement calling on the Government of Belize to make an official statement on the status of the proposed multi-million-dollar, mega-tourism project by Puerto Azul Belize Limited which the company wants to set up at the Lighthouse Reef Atoll, only 8 miles south of the majestic Belizean wonder – the Great Blue Hole. “Belize’s greatest asset is the pristine nature of its world class natural wonders. To place what can only be described as a theme park for billionaires in the middle of Lighthouse Reef, perhaps the nation’s most valuable natural asset, is nothing less than a crime committed against our future generations,” the joint statement said. The NGOs express concerns over the fact that the area slated for the mega-tourism project, directed by Italians Domenico Giannini & Fabio Nicola La Rosa, is environmentally sensitive in several ways.

This newspaper unconditionally supports BGYEA’s Saturday morning rally in Battlefield Park. A very few of you may not know what is BGYEA and what is Battlefield Park. BGYEA (Belize Grassroots Youth Empowerment Association) is some roots Belizean citizens trying to put food crops and plants in the ground. Battlefield Park is the historic protest site for the city and nation of Belize. It took a long time for the masses of the Belizean people to realize that we were actually losing our country, similarly to how the Palestinians lost theirs after World War II. Israel serves an important purpose for the United States and the North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO), which is the military arm of the US and the European Union (EU). Israel is a powerful military surrogate for the US and NATO which looks over the critical oil fields of the Middle East. The United States and the European Union desperately need the Middle East oil fields for their economies to survive and grow, but the American and European problem was that these Middle East oil countries were often Arab and often Islamic. Israel is an anti-Arab and anti-Islamic bully boy, a nuclear one at that, for the US and the EU. That is why the Palestinians had to lose their country. And that is why the Palestinians are now a people without a state.

Reports from Corozal are that Delmar Sutherland, a championship semipro football goalkeeper during the 1990s, is seriously ill. This is a sad state of affairs. Delmar is a fine gentleman, and in September of 1993 he helped to prevent serious violence in and around the People’s Stadium in Orange Walk Town. In 1993 Mayflower Street was already one of the toughest streets on Southside Belize City, but football was still competing with gang life for the attention of the young boys and young men on the street. One Saturday afternoon in July of 1992, a Mayflower-based team, the Kremandala Warriors, sponsored by our business organization, won the second division football championship in Belize City. The following night, the Kremandala Raiders lost to Penta Lakers in the inaugural semi-pro basketball championship. The inaugural semi-pro basketball season in 1992 had been a big success under Commissioner Gus Perera, while the Commissioner of semi-pro football, the late Telford Vernon, had run two successful tournaments, in 1991 and 1992. Amidst the general optimism surrounding semi-pro sports at the time, Kremandala decided to purchase a semi-pro football franchise for the Kremandala Warriors. This was a business decision, but it was more a community interest decision, because several of the young Warrior players had grown up working part time at our newspaper.

Drastic dropout rates at GOB high schools trigger merger
Against the backdrop of alarming dropout and repetition rates at certain Southside government high schools in Belize City, the Ministry of Education today confirmed reports that as early as this September, it intends to implement a sweeping reform at three government high schools which it says is intended to turn back the tide that has seen hundreds of young people fall by the wayside since 2009. That reform, though, may mean that some educators will be displaced, as the plan calls for a merger of programs currently offered by Sadie Vernon High School – the most beleaguered of the three, having seen its enrollment drop by nearly half and its number of classrooms reduced to a mere 6, amid public allegations of mismanagement; Maud Williams High School, which has seen a sudden shift from a steadily growing population to a sharp 23% decline in 2013; and Excelsior High School, which saw a 34% decline in enrollment between 2009 and 2010, but whose population had more or less stabilized at about 100 over the past three years.

Milestone photographic exhibit features trailblazing women
Dance director Althea Sealy, software innovator Tiffany Simpson, businesswoman Marie Sharp, author and poet Corinth Morter-Lewis, bank manager Sandra Bedran, Belize’s “first lady of comedy” — Beverly Smith-Lopez, Belize Cancer Society founder Juliet Soberanis, the country’s first female judge — Michelle Arana, and the organizer of the first village council – Cleopatra White, are among the women who are featured in Milestone, a photographic exhibit and commemorative “newspaper” which tell the stories of some leading Belizean women who have spent their lives “making a difference” in their communities across Belize. Briheda Haylock is the talented artist who put together the exhibit which highlights these accomplished women. Twelve of the twenty-two women nominated for the photographic highlight have their pictures displayed at the House of Culture in Belize City. Haylock told us that she was contacted by the Special Envoy’s office and commissioned by them to undertake the project.

Placencia villagers plant mangroves in memory of environmentalist
Mangroves exist to protect the coastline from natural occurrences such as floods and hurricanes, but since they are usually chopped down and thrust aside to give way to expensive seashore development projects nowadays, more than forty volunteers gathered in the Crimson Development community area of Placencia last Friday, May 30 to participate in a mangrove planting activities organized in memory of an environmentalist, Adrian Vernon. Amandala understands that approximately 400 seedlings were planted by members of the Vernon family, the World Wildlife Fund (WWF), the Southern Environmental Association (SEA), Oceana, the Placencia Village Council, the Placencia Citizens for Sustainable Development, the Placencia Fishermen’s Cooperative, Friends of the Placencia Lagoon, and the Coco Plum Resort and Residential Development.

Moratorium on “buffer,” Mr. Minister?
Slavery was abolished in British Honduras, as in other British colonies, in 1838. (The trans-Atlantic slave trade was outlawed in 1834.) 1838, … 1938. I was born in 1953. In 1973, an elderly “Able Creole” man (very dark skinned) told me that his great grandmother told him, when he was a little boy, that she used to be a slave in her very young days in Belize town. (That was before the whole country’s name was changed to “Belize.”) From logwood to mahogany, it was all about labor in the logging camps and at BEC sawmill. From “free” slave labor to cheap labor in the “free market capitalist system of parliamentary democracy.” “I owe my soul to the company store.” There are old time stories of grown men, who owed the “camissary,” and failed to show up for the start of the new season of work at the logging camp, who were physically accosted, detained, delivered a number of lashes with a whip, and taken to camp to fulfill their work obligations, for which they had signed with their “X”, since they couldn’t read or write.

We reap what we sow…BGYEA TO SOW CORN
“If we plant corn, we will reap corn; if we plant deceit we will reap enemies; if we plant abuse of power we will reap resistance; if we plant oppression, we will reap a revolution.” June 3, 2014 (Audrey Matura-Shepherd) I am the daughter of farmers. My father was a large sugar cane grower and to date my mother refuses to give up her cane field even after sugar prices plummeted. Planting is in our blood because when you plant you are bound to get a crop of what you planted. A mango seed does not bear coconut, nor does a plum seed bear apples. It is no coincidence that one of Jesus’ most famous parables is “The Parable of the Sower” (MATTHEW 13), because he planted many figurative seeds in the lives of many even to date. So planting, in both the agricultural sense and figurative sense, is important because it denotes life, hope, productivity, positivity, abundance, and makes one feel they are making something good happen. I don’t have a farm to plant but the few vegetables and garden plants I do plant make me appreciate the value of what the soil can produce when humans act in harmony with it.

Country’s energy supply will be stretched by 2016
Belize’s energy demand is growing, and within just a few years, in-country supplies will be strained if new sources of power are not added to the national grid. Last October, the Public Utilities Commission (PUC) and the Ministry of Energy, Science and Technology and Public Utilities jointly launched a call for bids to supply 75 megawatts of power to the national grid over the next 10 years. At the headquarters of the Belize Electricity Limited (BEL) on Wednesday morning, John Avery, the PUC’s chairman, publicly read bids submitted by 22 entities with both foreign and local interests, which want to produce power and sell to the national distributor, BEL, a government-owned utility. Avery said that most of the bids were surprisingly good proposals, although some seemed too ambitious. The prices proposed range from US9 cents to US21.5 cents per kilowatt-hour, he said.

Immigration sting operation nabs three bar owners
In making their rounds at various city recreation spots, the Immigration Department nabbed three bar owners who had employed persons without valid temporary work permits. The three accused were arraigned in the Magistrate’s Court late this afternoon. Abdon Cal, 42, the owner of Island Berries Bar, located on Barracks Road, was booked with two counts of employing persons not in possession of valid temporary work permits. According to Immigration officers, Cal employed two Honduran nationals, identified as Martha Rodriguez Lopez and Amanda Amaya. Mara Mejia, 42, the owner of La Catracha Bar, located on Coney Drive, was charged with three counts of the same offense. Mejia hired Honduran nationals Doris Margarita Perez Navarro, Carla Castro and Esmin Laura Aguliar.

Accident on Mapp and Cran Streets leaves victim’s leg in bad shape
Emeth Fortune, 23, an employee of the JEC Company on Youth for the Future Drive, is at the Karl Heusner Memorial Hospital in a serious condition after he was knocked off his motorcycle and the vehicle rolled over his foot in a collision that occurred at the junction of Cran and Mapp Streets at about 11:30 this morning. Fortune was travelling down Cran Street and made a left turn into Mapp Street when he was hit by an SUV, which was travelling down Mapp Street towards Freetown Road. As a result Fortune’s foot was crushed and his left femur, which was broken, was protruding out of the skin, and the dislocated ankle was dangling, among other injuries. A neighbor told Amandala that she was in her house when she heard a loud noise and looked out, and saw a man lying on the ground. His motorcycle was beside him, and a white SUV was parked nearby. She noted that his right leg was badly damaged and the bone was out of place. The ambulance came later and took him away.

Bagasse talks to continue on Friday
Since the Belize Sugar Industries (BSI) / American Sugar Refining (ASR) and representatives of the local sugar cane farmers met more than 2 months ago, on March 28, to continue negotiations on a quantum payment for bagasse, there has been a lull in bagasse talks – that is, until this Friday, June 6, when both parties, along with the Sugar Industry Control Board, acting as mediator, should resume consultations. According to Alfredo Ortega, Vice Chairman of the Belize Sugar Cane Farmers Association (BSCFA), BSI is currently offering the cañeros 51 cents per ton of bagasse compared to the farmers’ initial request for $10 a ton; however, they (the cane farmers) believe that they should be able to get more for their bagasse, especially since experts have advised them that their price should be in the vicinity of $4 per ton, as a base. Ortega contended that all the farmers want at the end of the day is a fair payment for BSI’s use of their bagasse, and nothing more than that. In the meanwhile, the 2013/2014 sugar crop season will soon come to an end, and in fact, reports from up north are that it is being contemplated to take place at the end of this month, if not sooner, depending on the cooperation of the weather.

Accused British sex offender on trial down south
David Taylor, 42, a British national who was accused of committing an unnatural crime – having sex with an underage boy in Placencia in December of 2012 – appeared in the Independence Magistrate’s Court today; however, indications are that Taylor may soon beat the charge, since the prosecution was still not ready to provide full disclosure for the case to proceed. As a result, Taylor’s lawyer, Ellis Arnold, asked Magistrate Americia de Moya to strike out the case due to the length of time since the initial arrest and charge, and the fact that still no disclosure has been made by the prosecution. In its defense, the prosecution stated that the file is with the Director of Public Prosecution’s office, and that it was just submitted to them (the DPP’s office) a month ago.

Belizean Consulate
By way of introduction, we preview Mr. Yorke’s article with portions of an email received by our sports desk today from Belize boxing announcer Leonard Ysaguirre, who made the article available to us. Ysaguirre: As you know, James Adderley and myself have been involved in a marginal fashion in reviving boxing in Belize. An offshoot of this involvement is a relationship formed with Mr. Roland Yorke, the Belizean Consulate to Los Angeles, who himself is an avid boxing fan. He is enthused with the effort being made here in Belize and has supported by securing donations for equipment which he is shipping to Belize. I will provide a list of these equipment and a date for their consignment to Smart and Lions Den boxing gyms. More immediately, Mr. Yorke would like to have an article (attached) published which he wrote on Rudolph Bent. Bent and Ludrick Lightburn were probably Belize‘s most accomplished fighters. This article was prompted by the announcement of the demise of Jimmy Ellis, a former Muhammad Ali contender. Bent fought Ellis, Robinson and several high ranking international boxers of varying weight classes.

TIDE Junior
In the only game played on Monday, June 2, at the Toledo Union Field in the TIDE Junior Freshwater Cup, St. Peter Claver Boys dropped Seventh Day Adventist Boys, 3-1, with goals from Andres Miranda (29’), Thomas Garbutt (35’) and Andre Vernon (38’); while Joash Ramirez (20’) scored for Seventh Day Adventist Boys. The other scheduled game was a no-show for Seventh Day Adventist Girls, who lost by default to St. Peter Claver Girls. On Tuesday afternoon, June 3, two games were played at Columbia Field and one at Golden Stream Field. In game 1 at Columbia Field, San Pedro Columbia Boys blanked Forest Home Methodist Boys, 3-0, with goals from Gabriel Che (5’), Ramon Tesecum (20’) and Gilbert Chiac (29’); and in game 2, San Pedro Columbia Girls won by the same score, 3-0, over Forest Home Methodist Girls, with goals from Jocelyn Coh (13’ & 25’) and Kaisy Thimbrel (28’). In the only game at Golden Stream Field, Indian Creek Boys played to a 2-2 draw with Golden Stream Boys. Andres Rash (5’ & 35’) struck twice for Indian Creek, while Darren Cal (11’ & 32’) did the same for Golden Stream.

Dangriga sports stats
We apologize for an error in our previous report, where Joslyn Chavarria was named as the first rider to cross the finish line in the 7th Annual Benguche Day Cycling Classic which took place on Sunday, May 25. Actually, Joslyn placed fifth. The correct list of top finishers follows: 1st place went to Wilson Assencio; 2nd was Edmund Camal; 3rd Shawn Cod; 4th Rizden Flowers; and 5th Joslyn Chavarria. Once again, our apologies for the mistake. More cycling in ‘Griga The Dangriga Amateur Cycling Association will continue its monthly race next week Sunday, June 15, which will be the Fathers’ Day Cycling Classic. This race will start (and finish) from in front of Wadani Shed at 10:30 a.m. on June 15 and head all the way to Hopkins junction and back. First place receives $250.00; 2nd $150.00; 3rd $100.00; and 4th $50.00. Registration is only $5.00. For more information, riders who are also fathers can contact Moses Lopez at 625-4022 or Mr. T. at 662-3310.

It’s “Win or go home”
Last Friday night, there was not one, but two potential series-clinching game 2’s in the best-of-3 National Elite Basketball League playoff semifinals. The San Pedro Tigersharks were at the UB Gymnasium in Garden City Belmopan to take on the Belmopan Point Bandits, while the Cayo Western Ballaz were in Belize City to face the Belize City No Limit Soldiers at Bird’s Isle. The Tigersharks had a 1-0 series lead, as did the No Limit Soldiers. The No Limit Soldiers were looking to put an end to the series with a victory on Friday night, but with their season on the line, the Cayo Western Ballaz came out strong in the first half, as they led by as many as 13 points, and ended the half with a 39 to 27 advantage. But The No Limit Soldiers would not go down without a fight, as they outscored the Western Ballaz 20 to 9 in the third quarter, to bring them within a point, 48-47, before the start of the fourth and final quarter.

Cricket corner
Well, over the weekend, nature did not permit games to be played in the Harrison Parks National Cricket Competition 2014. Hoping for better weather, these are the games scheduled for this weekend: On Saturday, June 7 – Western Eagles vs Excellence at Double Head; Wicked 11 vs Brilliant at Crooked Tree; and Brave Union vs Sunrise at Lords Bank. On Sunday, June 8 – Excellence vs Excelsior at St. Paul’s Bank; Brilliant vs Brave Union at Burrel Boom; and Wicked 11 vs Uprising at Isabella Bank.

SCFA and Dangriga
The Stann Creek Football Asssociation (SCFA) and Dangriga Girls & Boys Club U-15 Tournament, sponsored by Frank “Paapa” Mena, came to an end on Sunday, June 1, after two months of football action with the future footballers of Dangriga. The first afternoon match was for 3rd place, where DYFA went up against Wagiya. DYFA won, 4-1, with 3 goals from Gregory Ovado, Jr. and 1 by Myrick Marshall, Jr.; while the goal for Wagiya was by Warren Moss, Jr. In the championship match-up for 1st and 2nd place, featuring Umadagu vs Wagierale, the regular time ended, 3-3, with 2 goals from Jefton Apolonio and 1 from Gabriel Ramos for Umadagu, and 2 goals from Garrett Bowen and 1 from Latrell Middleton for Wagierale. Wagierale won, 5-4, in the penalty shoot-out. The final game was highly contested, and both teams played their hearts out.

The Reporter

Western Ballaz crushes SMART No Limit in basketball playoffs
The Cayo Western Ballaz eliminated SMART No Limit 75-57 in the third game of the National Elite Basketball League (NEBL) playoffs before a packed house at the Sacred Heart College auditorium in San Ignacio on Friday night, June 6. Farron Louriano led the Ballaz’ offensive, ramming home four monster dunks to achieve the highest individual score of the tournament: 34 pts and 12 boards, as they took a 21-11 lead in the first quarter. Richard Troyer drained in a long 3-pointer almost from half court; as he added 17 pts, 16 boards; while Travis Lennon scored 12 pts, four boards and to lead 38-26 at intermission. Kurt “Chengo” Burgess had three points, and six rebounds and was a major force in the Ballaz defense until he was ejected from the ball game following an altercation with No Limits’ Andrew Ortiz, who was also thrown out of the game.

National primary schools volleyball championships held
The undefeated girls of Belize Elementary School and the Orange Walk District champions, the boys of Chan Pine Ridge School, won the national primary schools volleyball championships organized by the National Sports Council at Bird’s Isle on Friday evening, June 6. The Belize Elementary girls won their second national title, after winning the national football championships in 2012, by dominating the Stann Creek district champions, the girls of Holy Ghost School from the Pomona Valley 25-13 in the first set of the championship final. The Holy Ghost school rallied to make a real fight of the second set, taking it to several match points at: 23-22, 24-23, 25-24, and 27-26 before the BES girls took it away 28-26. The Chan Pine Ridge boys recovered from a deficit after the Cayo District champions, the boys of Howard Smith Nazarene School of Benque Viejo had dominated the first set: 25-14. The Chan Pine Ridge boys rallied to win the second set 25-20 and took the third set: 15-12.

Ten-year-old wins 20th national Coca Cola Spelling Bee

Ten year old Shanalee Gayap, a Std IV student at Solid Rock Academy in the Stann Creek District, became one of the youngest winners of the annual Coca Cola Spelling Bee when she edged out 11 older contestants from across the country on Friday, June 6. All 12 participants survived the first two rounds of the Ministry of Education co-sponsored event held at the Countryside Park in Spanish Lookout, Cayo District, but only Shanalee correctly spelled both her words “beau” and “coucal” from the reserved list in the third elimination round. This won her the first prize of a Dell laptop computer from Bowen & Bowen Ltd, complete with a computer printer, a laptop bag, external speakers and a host of other accessories. She also won a full four-year scholarship from the Ministry of Education to the secondary school of her choice, and a two-year scholarship from The Belize Bank to any tertiary level institution, along with a book grant. She also won a computer and printer for her teacher and school principal, Elcedia Awe, and for her school.

Supreme court upholds Magistrate’s decision on extradition hearing
Deon Bruce, 28, lost another round of his fight against extradition when the Supreme Court upheld a decision of Chief Magistrate Ann-Marie Smith. Smith had granted a request by American authorities’ for Bruce. Justice Courtney Abel ruled that there was no merit to the allegations of bias by Smith in conducting pre-trial matters, nor was there procedural irregularity in considering evidence alleged not to have been properly introduced. Additionally, Justice Abel did not agree with Bruce’s claim that there was abuse of process when Smith allowed crown counsels from the Office of the Solicitor General rather than the Director of Public Prosecutions office to argue the case. He said that there were no arguments on these at trial hence the Chief Magistrate could not have considered them. Evidence provided Justice Abel stated, however, that Bruce’s strongest argument, presented by his attorney Audrey Matura-Shepherd, is that the evidence the U.S. authorities have furnished was insufficient to allow for Bruce’s extradition. All they have provided is the evidence of the only alleged eyewitness. The evidence presented would have been admissible in Belize except for the testimony of the case detective, Abel said, and in any event, it is not the province of the sitting judge or magistrate to weigh up evidence before a trial.

Toledo teen says father impregnated her
Toledo police are looking for a man after his teenage daughter reported that he had sexual relations with her and she is now pregnant for him. The 16-year-old of Aguacate Village, Toledo, went along with her sister to the Punta Gorda Police Station where she told investigators that her pregnancy is almost full term. She accused her father of committing the crime last September.

IMF in Barbados
Barbadian officials met on Thursday with a team from the International Monetary Fund (IMF) as part of a monitoring program on fiscal measures which aim to restructure their government’s finances. The IMF representatives have met with that country’s Chamber of Commerce, Central Bank officials and private bankers. The IMF visit follows a previous statement that the island was suffering from a weak macroeconomic performance that began since 2008 and a 0.7 percent shrink of the economy.

Guatemala’s ex-police chief gets life
Erwin Sperisen, Guatemala’s ex-police chief is serving a life sentence in a Switzerland prison for the deaths of seven prisoners in 2006. Sperisen, 43, was found guilty of being involved in extra-judicial killings that were committed during a police raid on the El Pavon prison outside Guatemala City. His trial took place in Geneva because he could not be extradited since he holds Swiss citizenship. The case was held under a law that allows Swiss nationals to be tried in their own country for crimes committed abroad.

Chop victim dies, attacker charges to be upgraded
Chopping victim Giovanni Borland died on Friday and his attacker’s charges will be upgraded to murder. Borland died last Friday at the Karl Heusner Memorial Hospital as a result of chop wounds he received to his head in an altercation at the Mil Amores Bar in Libertad on Sunday, May 11th. Joseph West, a 24-year-old Libertad resident, was initially charged with attempted murder, dangerous harm and use of deadly means of harm following the incident. His charges will now be upgraded following Borland’s death.

Supreme Court allows Coye family access to accounts
Skeptical of the arguments made before her, Supreme Court Justice Sonia Young declined to continue a freezing order made against Melonie and Marlene Coye and their company Money Exchange International Limited. The ruling allows the Coyes to resume access to their various bank accounts as soon as the order is made available, even as the civil matter continues. She had previously continued the order on May 5, mere hours after fellow judge Shona Griffith lifted it, pending arguments for an interim injunction asked for by Senior Counsel Lisa Shoman on behalf of Panamanian company Internet Experts S.A., also doing business as Instadollar.

Trevor Vernon ends involvement with Castro case
Facing the possible selling off of his assets, Trevor Vernon appeared to back away from continuing his pursuit of Edmond Castro over alleged violations of the law, after paying the remainder of his court costs to Senior Counsel Denys Barrow. Vernon, a resident of Burrell Boom, saw his effort struck out by Chief Justice Kenneth Benjamin, who ruled that the case was improperly founded. The Chief Justice ordered $5,000 in costs to be paid to Barrow, and Vernon met nearly half that – $2,489.50 – in two pillowcases full of shillings which he brought to Barrow’s office on Coney Drive last Tuesday. But on the strength of a writ of execution, court bailiffs and representatives of Barrow visited Vernon the day after and marked several appliances for sale, and ordered Vernon to pay the remainder of his costs by June 2.

Test results confirm crop destruction by herbicide
Samples sent abroad for testing have confirmed that vegetables in the Valley of Peace area, Cayo, that were destroyed in March were done by Roundup, a lethal herbicide. This week Jose Alpuche, chief executive officer in the Ministry of Agriculture, told The Reporter that the Ministry and the Department of Environment are looking specifically at strengthening the guidelines as they pertain to the application of chemicals to avoid a re-occurrence of the incident. “The initial investigation [of the incident] revealed that the operators, who were contracted by Green Tropics to conduct the spraying, did not follow existing protocol as it relates to wind speeds.” Alpuche explained that aerial sprayings are prohibited when the wind velocity is above a certain limit. He added that the additional measures being looked at includes a number of relevant government agencies.

CFATF commends Belize for financial legislation
The Caribbean Financial Action Task Force (CFATF) has commended Belize for enacting nine pieces of key legislation, six laws and three regulations to boost Anti Money Laundering and Combating the Financing of Terrorism (AML/CFT) standards. The statement from the CFATF, last week, stated that Belize has brought into force significant mechanisms to address its AML/CFT deficiencies. The statement also said Belize and the CFATF should continue to work together to ensure that Belize’s reform process is completed, by addressing its remaining deficiencies and continue implementing its Action Plan.

NICH Partners with Taiwan for primary school art programme
The National Institute of Culture and History (NICH) and the Republic of China Taiwan have teamed up to launch the Primary Schools Art Skills Training (PSAST) Pilot Project. The Embassy of the Republic of China (Taiwan) presented a check a cheque for $35,206 to the President of NICH Diane C. Haylock on Monday. The donation, which will go towards the projects’ implementation, was handed over by First Secretary Amino Chi on behalf of H.E. David C.K. Wu, Ambassador to Belize from the Republic of China (Taiwan). Information Officer for NICH, Shari Williams, told the Reporter that the PSAST will last six months, running from July to December. After the pilot period is over, the Taiwanese government will decide whether or not the programme will continue.

Yohnny Rosado: I did nothing to Vitalino Reyes Jr
Yohnny Rosado, owner of, said that contrary to reports neither he nor any of his employees were involved in the altercation that has Vitalino Reyes Jr. in the hospital on life-support. Rosado said he was shocked to learn the following day that he was being implicated in the incident and wished to clear his name for the integrity of his business and his reputation. According to Rosado he and his employees were at the Long-Island Bar on Blue Marlin Drive on Thursday evening and did see Reyes but they never engaged in any conflict with him. Rosado said he was aware that Reyes was involved in a scuffle with some other persons at the bar but never saw Reyes unconscious. According to Rosado’s attorney, Audrey Matura-Shepherd, their evidence shows that after the incident police arrived on the scene and later Reyes and his associate, Yoney Vega, were escorted away by the officers.

Milestone photo exhibit kicks off countrywide tour in Belize City
The Office of the Special Envoy for Women and Children is paying homage to outstanding women throughout Belize with its photo exhibition entitled “Milestone.” The launch of the country-wide tour was held at the Belize City House of Culture last Friday. The exhibit showcases black and white photographs of 12 pioneering women in fields such as medicine, the arts, politics, and even technology. Additionally, the milestone newspaper was distributed at the launch, honouring another 22 women for the contributions they have made to the country and to women on a whole. The exhibit features outstanding personalities such as first female Medical Doctor, Bernice Marjorie Hulse; and Belize’s first Lady of Comedy, Beverly Smith Lopez.

Commitment to Rule of Law, an Imperative
We often hear the phrase ‘rule of law,’ but rarely discuss what it means and how it’s relevant to our collective efforts to earn our daily bread. In the dictionary and therefore at its most basic, rule of law refers to “the principle that all people and institutions are subject to and accountable to law that is fairly applied and enforced; the principle of government by law.” Breaking it down a little further, the World Justice Project states that “the rule of law is a system of rules and rights that enables fair and functioning societies” and goes on to define this system as “one in which the following four universal principles are upheld: •The government and its officials and agents as well as individuals and private entities are accountable under the law. •The laws are clear, publicized, stable, and just; are applied evenly; and protect fundamental rights, including the security of persons and property.

Time to move on
After a brief break it’s good to be back. Relationships that do not work always end in breakups and the time has come for the administration of the UDP to move on. This administration has lost the faith of the people and has failed the nation as a whole. In just three short weeks since I last wrote an article, there has been Rio Azul, Mark King’s inside view of how the party feels about its citizens, nurses transfers and a fetus under a bed at KHMH. Just when we think things cannot get worse, it does. I fail to see what this administration is doing to tackle the real issues that are affecting the nation such as unemployment and a growing increase in violent crime. The administration seems to be focused on mass corruption and basically filling their pockets just in case they are not in office for another term. The growing feeling from the citizenry is that the UDP have morphed into the same people they promised not to become. It’s difficult to see why they continue to cling to office, when it has become brutally clear that the people no longer want them in office. The right thing for this administration to do is to call an early election so that the people can remove them from office and a new mandate for the nation can be set.

Rod of Correction Social partners unite under new movement
A wide variety of civil society organizations have come together in a new movement to address national issues. Led by the National Trade Union Congress of Belize (NTUCB), and featuring such groups as the Sarstoon Temash Institute for Indigenous Management (SATIIM), Belize Grassroots Youth Empowerment Association (BGYEA), Citizens Organized for Liberty through Action (COLA), the Council of Churches and the Evangelical Association, the members of the new “Rod of Correction Movement” have one thing in common – a frustration with the current Government of Belize. In unity there is strength, goes the old saying, and the organizations aim to promote their various causes – land, governance, democracy, social issues, labour and many more – on a level playing field. According to President of the National Trade Union Congress of Belize, Dylan Reneau, the group’s first activity is drumming up support for Saturday’s “Plant Di Corn Rally” in support of BGYEA at the Battlefield Park in Belize City.

Contreras in, Anderson out! Chief pharmacist banned from pharmaceutical meeting
Chief Pharmacist Sharon Sanchez-Anderson was barred this week from a technical meeting regarding the procedures in place for pharmaceuticals and medical supplies. Danini Contreras, director of the Drug Inspectorate, attended the meeting, amidst the controversy of her appointment and the call of the Pharmacy Association of Belize that she be removed from the post for lack of qualification. According to Anderson’s Public Service Union representative, Ray Davis, the organizers from the Pan American Health Organization informed her, just prior to the session, that she could not attend the meeting on Wednesday. PAHO also informed Anderson that the organization is not supposed to have direct contact with her, based on directives from the Ministry of Health.

Environmentalists question Puerto Azul Project!
Seven organizations have issued a joint, seven-point statement to demand answers from the Government of Belize regarding the status of the proposed Puerto Azul project. Oceana, the Belize Audubon Society, the World Wildlife Foundation, MarAlliance, the Belize Tourism Industry Association and the Healthy Reefs for Healthy People Initiative demand a more transparent process. “There has to be a mechanism that Belizeans can participate and be consulted and have it be meaningful with these types of developments, and government policies,” Janelle Chanona, Oceana Belize vice-president, told The Reporter Thursday. The asked for clarification on whether or not the current administration has or intends to endorse this project, especially in the light of the fact that two government ministers—Investment Promotion Minister Erwin Contreras and Tourism Minister Manuel Heredia Jr—attended the project’s launch Cannes, France.

Ministry of Education: Streamlining not amalgamating high schools
The Ministry of Education clarified this week that it is “streamlining its resources” and not amalgamating Maud Williams, Excelsior and Sadie Vernon high schools. Minister of Education Hon. Patrick Faber, accompanied by members of the Secondary School Unit and other ranking ministry officials, explained that each school will remain its own independent entity, and both first and second form classes will remain unaltered. The changes In third and fourth forms, courses of study will be shared between the three schools, and some classes will be offered at alternate campuses. Some classes will also be offered at the Institute for Technical and Vocational Education and training. “The school with the best science lab will be designated to offer Sciences (Chemistry and Biology), and students from all three schools will report to the designated campus for that class,” said Brenda Armstrong, of the Secondary School Unit. “Likewise with other subjects such as Technical and Vocational, Business and Arts.”

Belize a money laundering hotspot?
Multiple International media outlets have recently named Belize as a money-laundering hotspot, but the International Business Companies registrar, Gian Gandhi, speaking to The Reporter on Thursday, said there’s no cause for concern. On Monday, an Associated Press article entitled “Foreign banks agree to reveal Americans’ hidden assets to IRS”, published by a Pittsburgh Pennsylvania paper, described Belize as one of several tax-evasion havens. “As much as $25 trillion … was stashed in 70 or more countries whose banking laws allowed individuals and corporations to mask their wealth from the Internal Revenue Service and avoid paying taxes,” the article stated. “To demonstrate how easy it is for people to stash money out of the IRS’ reach,” the article by Trib Total Media alleged that two of their reporters spent less than $1,000 to set up a shell company and bank account in Belize. The money, they say, was then “accessible through ATMs”.

The Belize Times

Bar Opposes Barrow – Bar & Opposition Leader Reject Barrow’s Re-Appointment of Judge
The Belize Bar Association has bucked heads with Prime Minister Dean Barrow again over the proposed re-appointment of Justice Samuel Awich to the Court of Appeal. The Bar, in a strongly-worded resolution that was crafted following an important general meeting of its members on Monday, June 2nd, has declared that Awich’s appointment “gives rise to a real likelihood of an appearance of bias”. The “appearance of bias”, according to the Bar, lies in a sequence of events leading to the Prime Minister’s notification of his decision. The Prime Minister had given notice to the Leader of the Opposition Hon. Francis Fonseca via a letter on Thursday May 19th, four days after Awich delivered the lead decision in favour of the Government in a constitutional case regarding the Barrow Administration’s takeover of Belize Telemedia Limited. The Government had been aware that Awich’s contract was coming to an end for months. It should have been more proper to sort out any negotiations for a contract renewal way before. The Bar also noted in their resolution that they had previously opposed Awich’s appointment back in 2012, but Prime Minister went ahead with his decision.

Ecuador’s Most Wanted Linked to UDP
When the news of the arrest of Ecuador fugitive, Floyd Wendel Ebanks Jurado, went public the UDP spin masters were quick to find every possible way to paint him as a PUP. Channel 7 was on the forefront and reported that Ebanks “was very active in the 2012 general elections” for the PUP, but it couldn’t be further from the truth. Ebanks was involved in the PUP Cayo West campaign until mid-2011, when PUP officials learnt of his close links with the UDP. Ebanks was immediately removed from the PUP’s campaign. The truth is that Ebanks has a very close relationship with then UDP Freetown Candidate Lee Mark Chang. A photo obtained by the BELIZE TIMES, taken at one of Lee Mark Chang’s political rallies in 2011, shows Ebanks and Chang almost cuddling. The photo had been posted on a previously existing Floyd Ebanks Jr. Facebook profile page with the caption reading “Lee Mark for Freetown”. Under the photo, a comment was posted by Lee Mark saying “Nice Pic”.

Unions/Social Partners Unleash “ROD OF CORRECTION” on Barrow administration
It’s been said before, and repeated to infinity, that Belizeans are beyond fed up with the constant disrespect, disregard and abuse of power that has swollen the ranks of this UDP administration, as maestroed by the incompetent, power-hungry marshal, Dean O. Barrow. And while there have been multiple attempts by the social partners and the Unions to fight against the excess and rein in the Barrow government’s continued lust for power, it has never quite reached a point where action has become the only outlet to bring this out-of-control Government to permanent heel. That all changed this morning with the launch of a joint Union-social partner movement known as “The Rod of Correction” Movement, during a meeting with various stakeholders at the Belize National Teachers’ Union’s (BNTU) conference room on Mercy Lane in Belize City. The media was not invited to the closed-door meeting, but BELIZE TIMES understands from a close source that President of the National Trade Union Congress of Belize (NTUCB), Dylan Reneau stated in the movement’s initial mission statement: “The movement recognizes the fight against the rampant, if not absolute abuse of power, and has been brought together, unified to fight against it….”

Singhing for More
A proposed mega resort on the Lighthouse Reef Atoll appears to have encountered a major glitch from an unsuspecting source. Mike Singh, whose name was once called up in an investigation of a major money laundering ring in El Salvador, has weighed in on the Puerto Azul project which, from all appearances, has the backing of heavyweight Ministers, Erwin “Danini’s Papa” Contreras and Manuel “barefoot and wasted” Heredia. The two were photographed rubbing elbows and partying like rockstars with Hollywood superstars John Travolta and Adrien Brody at the Cannes Film Festival in France. Like Castro, who took a page straight out of Dean Barrow’s book of nepotism and started issuing checks to his family members, these two lavish Ministers appear to be following in the footsteps of their leader’s wife, Kim Barrow, who too seems determined to make it to superstardom no matter the cost (at our expense of course).

Judiciary: Danger Ahead!
By G. Michael Reid It is not chance that rules the world. Ask the Romans, who had a continuous sequence of successes when they were guided by a certain plan, and an uninterrupted sequence of reverses when they followed another. There are general causes, moral and physical, which act in every monarchy, elevating it, maintaining it, or hurling it to the ground. All accidents are controlled by these causes. And if the chance of one battle—that is, a particular cause—has brought a state to ruin, some general cause made it necessary for that state to perish from a single battle. In a word, the main trend draws with it all particular accidents. ~ Montesquieu The period known as the age of enlightenment began sometime during the 17th century and flourished until about the end of the 18th century. This period produced great thinkers like Francis Bacon, Spinoza, John Lock, Voltaire and Isaac Newton; whose ideas drastically changed the way of the world; both spiritual and secular. It was a time when the world underwent a scientific revolution as well as a revolution in human thought. New discoveries afforded man a greater ease of industry while new perspectives challenged traditional concepts in culture and politics. There was a significant shift in the existing paradigm of relying on tradition, faith and superstition to a system based on sound reasoning. The status quo of politics also fell under the axe of reconstruction and the ideas of one man in particular, shook the existing monarchies and “ancien régime” to their very foundation. His The Spirit of the Laws (1748), discourse on government was adopted as the blueprint for many modern day governments.

Enough Is Enough!
Something is going very wrong in Belize, and most Belizeans at home and abroad can see it. The government, elected to serve, without fear or favour and with no discrimination to race, creed or colour, has failed the Belizean people miserably, and in such a short time. According to Mark King, the UDP policy is UDP first, Belizeans second and PUPs last. Imagine that! On an almost daily basis, Belizeans are left to wonder in amazement and disgust when the elected Government of Prime Minister Dean Barrow will get things right. Our people are under constant assault, as safety has become an expensive luxury. While citizen’s security is under attack, so is our national security. This is the result of the Barrow Administration’s failure to define a comprehensive security policy to protect our people from internal criminal activity and our national territory from external attacks. In fact, looking at the level of disregard for our nation’s security and territorial sovereignty, and the lack of appropriate response and inaction from the Government, one would think we have no security policy. This means our security forces are left to figure things out on their own, operating in a haphazard manner.

Duck Run I wins Football Marathon
Team Duck Run I won a football marathon organized with the assistance of Orlando Habet and the PUP Cayo North East committee on Sunday May 25, 2014. Second place went to Billy White and Third Place went to Team Two of Duckrun One. Other participating teams were Duckrun Two and Westrac. PUP Standard Bearer Orlando Habet will continue to support and inspire the young people of Cayo Northeast with positive activities and opportunities.

Belize Bank Bulldogs defeats 2 opponents in softball
The undefeated Belize Bank Bulldogs posted their 2nd back to back win: 17-7 by mercy rule in the 4th inning against the Ministry of Education/Belize Water Services in the Belize City interoffice softball competition at the home of softball at the Rogers Stadium on Saturday. Other games: BEL Powersockets vs. KHMH – 33-13 BEL Powersockets vs. Guardian/National Sports Council – 14-6 Customs/Central Bank vs. Belize Telemedia – 19-18

Victor Valencia is 2014 Strongman Champ
Victor Valencia demonstrated that he is true champ material when he repeated as strongman champ in the Belize Body Building & Fitness Federation (BBBFF) 2014 strongman contest held at the Riverside Tavern on Saturday. Of the four contestants, Valencia scored the most – 32 points – in 9 events to retain the title and win the $600 1st prize. Theo Gentle, 2008/2010 champ, who had also placed 3rd in the 2011 and 2012 contests, scored 21 points to win the $400 2nd prize. Emir Perez of Muscle Hut Fitness Club in Belmopan scored 19 points to win the $350 3rd prize, while Allan Gallardo, also of Muscle Hut, was 4th with 18 points.

Celebrating Our Bright Minds – Featuring: Anglican Cathedral College, Excelsior High, Sadie Vernon High, Maud Williams High, Gwen Lizarraga High, Pallotti High and St. John’s College
Our third series on the special High School Graduation Season begins with Anglican Cathedral College, located on Albert Street in Belize City. According to Principal Ismael Requena, who spoke with the BELIZE TIMES via phone last Wednesday, May 28th, 92 out of 103 students took their march at the Bliss Center for the Performing Arts on Sunday, June 1st at 2:00 p.m. Requena admitted the 2014 class was “the biggest graduating class” since the school commenced following the amalgamation of St. Michaels and St. Hilda’s in 1982. Leading those ranks are: Brandon Jackson (Valedictorian, with a Grade Average of 92%), Jorge L. Rodriguez (Salutatorian, with a Grade Average of 87.3%), Eluid Miller (3rd Place, delivered the Vote of Thanks), and Ajaih Hamilton (4th Place, who introduced Graduation Guest Speaker Dr. Carol Babb).

Eulogy for Hon. Marcial Mes
We gather this morning in the vibrant, majestic community of San Pedro Columbia, Toledo to celebrate and honor the life of our dear friend and colleague, Hon. Marcial Mes. On behalf of the entire People’s United Party family, I express our profound and deepest sympathies to his wife Odelia; his father Bartolo; his sons Luis, Estevan and Orlando; his daughters Rosita, Felicia, Elena and Isabella; his sisters Amelia, Donicia and Patricia; and to all the other members of the family. We love you all and we are here to support you. I first met Marcial Mes when I was only 10 years old and he was a student/teacher at the Belize Teachers College in Belize City. My own father, William Fonseca, had spent almost a decade teaching in rural Toledo in the 1960’s and it was right here in San Pedro Columbia while teaching at the Roman Catholic School that he met the Mes family and a young Marcial Mes

PUP Western Leaders – United in Purpose!
The six leaders of the People’s United Party Western Caucus: Hon. Julius Espat, Hon. Joseph Mahmud, Senator Patrick Andrews, Dra. Lesbia Guerra Cocom, Orlando Habet and former Minister Daniel Silva, gathered in Belmopan with PUP Leader Hon. Francis Fonseca on Tuesday afternoon to discuss the Party’s work in the Cayo District. The Western leaders committed to working in unity to bring about PUP victory in all constituencies and much needed change for the people of Cayo. The UDP have long considered the Cayo District as the safe seats of the “red hills”. That notion was shattered in the 2012 elections when Cayo South and Cayo North turned against the UDP, while in Cayo North East and Cayo Central they barely held on to victories despite massive fraudulent registration of voters and vote buying. This time, the people of Cayo will send their message loud and clear: they deserve better, with true and humble PUP leadership.

At a Special Meeting of the Bar Association of Belize held on Monday, June 2, 2014 the Bar Association expressed in very strong and clear terms its opposition to the proposed re-appointment of Mr. Justice Samuel Awich to the Belize Court of Appeal for a further period of seven years, and condemned the grant of this extension of contract just after the delivery of the judgment by the Court of Appeal in Civil Appeals No’s 18, 19 and 21 of 2012 in favor of the Government of Belize as detrimental to confidence in the administration of justice in Belize. Mr. Justice Awich was first appointed to the Court of Appeal on May 16, 2012 for a period of two years over the strong objections of both the Bar Association and the Leader of the Opposition. The “Nationalisation” appeals were heard in October of 2012 and a majority decision by Justice Awich was delivered on May 15, 2014, the very day of the expiration of his appointment. Both the Bar association and myself, as Leader of the Opposition, have objected once again to the proposed re-appointment of Justice Awich.

Town Council vehicle crashed then abandoned
A Benque Viejo Town Council vehicle, property of taxpayers, was badly damaged in a collision and left abandoned by the UDP driver and crew last week. The occupants apparently in an attempt to conceal the identity of the vehicle accident removed the license plates, but they forgot that the Council’s identification sticker remained on the vehicle. Typical airhead UDPs. What were they trying to hide? Answer: their culpability, recklessness, abuse and waste of tax payers’ money for wrecking the town’s property. Information to the BELIZE TIMES is that the vehicle was driven at the time by Town Council employee, Obed Contreras. The vehicle was outside its jurisdiction and driven at night with no authorization. Sources say Contreras and his passengers identified as Ricardo Garrido and Heraldo Rancharan were returning to Benque after a night of partying in Belmopan when they crashed into a horse that was on the road side in Roaring Creek village.

Big Break for COLA’s Prosecution! – Penner file to be tabled at House Meeting next Friday?
COLA’s private prosecution of corrupt UDP Minister Elvin Penner is about to get a big break! Government sources have confirmed to the BELIZE TIMES that the much-coveted Auditor General’s “preliminary report” into the Immigration scandal involving Penner’s criminal wrongdoing could be de-classified once it is introduced at the next House Sitting scheduled for Friday June 13, 2014. Both Auditor General Dorothy Bradley and Commissioner of Police Allen Whylie have rejected COLA’s request for the provision of material evidence found in their investigations. In a March 28th 2014 letter, the Auditor General stated as one of her reasons for refusing to cooperate or provide disclosure that the information sought by COLA is “exempt” under the Freedom of Information Act because of a “rebuttable presumption” that it is being reviewed by Cabinet. Documents under review by Cabinet are only made public if they are tabled before a House Meeting.

UDP’s end in Cayo North East is near!
The UDP are at war with themselves in Cayo North East. With Elvin Penner pushed out by royal decree to save the UDP some major embarrassment, several opportunists have jumped into the race thinking that the people of the area are fools to give them another chance. The war is on and getting intense between three losing candidates vying for UDP Standard Bearer for Cayo Northeast. The post became vacant after Elvin “Passport” Penner turned politically radioactive for the UDP. This is after Dean Barrow discovered that Penner had cheaply signed away Belizean patrimony to a wanted fugitive who was in a Taiwan prison. The two frontrunners in this race of losers are John August and Eduardo Juan. John August’s campaign against Eduardo Juan is that Juan is a Penner lackey and supporter. A win for Juan is a win for corrupt Elvin Penner. Juan proved that much in a Channel 7 interview last Thursday in which he spoke insanely saying that Penner is “still loved” by the people. When he referred to “the people”, he probably meant folks like Kim Won Hong, to whom Penner gave away Belizean citizenship and passport illegally.

Patrick Jones

7 Awe-inspiring Photos that Prove Belize is a Beautiful Country
In 1934, Aldous Huxley wrote that if the world had any ends, British Honduras (now Belize) would certainly have to be one of them. Of course you have to agree with the late Aldous Huxley because as you will see in these 7 awe-inspiring photos, Belize […]

Workshop of preserving cultural heritage held in Corozal
The Institute of Archaeology is being proactive in taking care of the nation’s cultural heritage. With the recent destruction of the Noh Mul site in Orange Walk still fresh in everyone’s mind, the Institute of Archaeology today facilitated a workshop on preserving Belize’s cultural heritage. The workshop, which […]

Five Cavetubing workers face charges in the Reyes attack
Five employees of Yohnny Rosado’s business,, have been formally charged with dangerous harm and use of deadly means of harm in connection with last Thursday’s brutal attack on 23 year old rival tour guide Vitalino Reyes, Jr., who continues to recover from severe head trauma sustained from […]

Deon Bruce loses extradition case
Supreme Court Justice Courtney Abel has declined to issue a writ of habeas corpus and upheld the decision of Chief Magistrate Ann-Marie Smith issued in January to extradite 28 year old Deon Bruce. Bruce is wanted in Chicago, Illinois, to face trial of charges of murder and attempted […]

Christian Ebanks makes bail; Guatemalan couple kept waiting
Three weeks ago Christian Ebanks, a naturalized Belizean businessman of the West Landivar area, was picked up at home and charged with keeping a firearm and ammunition without a gun license. Gang Suppression Unit officers searched his residence on Teacher Street on May 14 and found a chrome […]

Bar owner charged for hiring undocumented workers
Zhaohang Huang, a 50 year old naturalized Belizean-Chinese businessman, pleaded guilty today to five counts of employing persons not in possession of a valid temporary workers’ permit. He was charged in the same raid that netted two other bar owners on Wednesday night, June 4. In his case, […]

Woman charged with 85 counts of theft from her employer
Today an employee of the Feinstein Group of Companies was read 85 counts of theft. The charge against Marsha Gillett arose out of an allegation that she stole monies from the Group of companies over a 20-month period. Gillett, a resident of Queen Helmut Avenue in West Landivar, […]

Why I Love Caye Caulker Belize
Caye Caulker is definitely one of my favorite places in the world…..and I have seen many beautiful places. For me…a place must not only look beautiful….but it must have soul. Caye Caulker has soul. I saw the place transform from a fishing village to one of Belize’s premier tourist destinations…and it keeps getting better every day. The people are warm and friendly….down to earth….you can still talk with them without having to listen to yenking and fakeness…..I have made many friends and acquaintances in Caye Caulker over the years. I started going there way back when I started sixth form in Belize City. My student budget allowed me to buy cheap food…I would take my bottle to keep the drinks cost down….and party all night or take naps closer to dawn on a pier to avoid the hotel bills. It was quite safe to do so….and actually the sea is warm and inviting at that hour. I witnessed many a perfect sunrise from these experiences…

Toledo vegetable farmers learn better production techniques
Farmers in the Toledo district now have access to technical advice on how to better produce vegetables for the local market. On Thursday, close to three dozen farmers from rural Toledo attended a one-day workshop on vegetable production; which was facilitated by the Agriculture Department. Extension Officer Amir Pulido and his team, share with the farmers the different techniques on improving hybrid varieties, irrigation systems and the proper care and cultivation methods. As part of the day-long workshop, the participating farmers also got to tour the Agriculture Department’s demonstration plots in Elridgeville where they saw in practical terms, all of the theory that was explained to them during the workshop.

Toledo man wanted for allegedly impregnating his daughter
There is another disturbing story of the sexual abuse of our young girls by grown men. The latest story comes from rural Toledo district and police are classifying it as a case of incest. A 16 year old girl from the remote village of Aguacate went to police this week accompanied by her sister to report that last September, her father had sexual intercourse with her. Police say that a medical examination conducted on the minor not only certified that she was raped, but that she is 8 months and 3 weeks pregnant.


The Volcano’s of Belize
The forming of the landmass of our planet after Pangaea has been nothing short of remarkable. Plate shifting is still going on today with the evidence of earthquakes and the consistent growth of the Himalayas based on the crashing of the plates up from India. It is a very impressive phenomenon. Sixty five million years ago a meteorite struck the North Eastern coast of the Yucatan and caused catastrophic devastation to the planet. The cloud of dust that choked the sunlight from the earth immediately affected the plants, which then affected the herbivores and later, the carnivores for the most part were demolished. For what we know of the earth now, the sight of it then was not pretty. Mother earth went barren. The devastation caused volcanic reaction all over the planet. The earth experienced tsunami’s like never before and the earth opened up under the pressure. This started the movement of the plates of the earth. Landmasses started to move toward the formation of the continents. Landmasses at one time were under the sea and at other times above the tide. There is geological evidence that Belize was covered by water at least three times in its history. The evidence of that is the remains of crustaceans deposits – calcium carbonate (limestone), the soil type which according to geologists, colonises sixty five percent of Belize’s land mass.

Helping Roni Martinez protect the Scarlet Macaw
It’s not always easy to discover if something you are donating to on line is real or just a sham, but this was fairly simple. First it was part of The San Pedro Sun newspaper, second I didn’t find anything bad about them on, third I asked a friend that lives down there and she suggest I contact Belize Bird Rescue Avian Rehabilitation Centre and Sanctuary, I called first, no answer so I emailed and got a fast reply from Nikki Buxton. So in less than four hours I had my answer, donated on line safely and passed the info to all my friends on Face Book. Roni does marvelous work and it’s hard and sometimes dangerous, they need these long range radios to help these beautiful birds. I’m not in Belize yet, in fact have NEVER been there, except on line and in my mind…but planning a trip there soon. So I wanted to begin to help a cause that is part of the Country I hope to call home someday. This was a perfect start! No amount is too small, it’s easy and you’ll feel really good about it! I hope someday to be able to see these beautiful birds in their natural habit and thriving instead of teetering on the brink of extinction in the Country. Go to the Scarlet Macaw Protection Belize page on Go Fund Me and help Roni there. It’s easy!

“Lay It Down” in San Pedro, Ambergris Caye, Belize.
In the previous edition I mentioned that I was diligently (OK, maybe not diligently but I am gradually ‘ticking’ them off) working my way through my current ‘to do’ list. Yesterday I felt like I was really going to start cracking it when I set off from home with my mini list. And my instincts subsequently proved to be correct. Before I left home though some more of Lloyd’s guys turned up at the gate in the back garden with some more sand to complete the land filling job.

International Sources

Invest 90L in Gulf of Mexico a Heavy Rain Threat for Mexico
A tropical disturbance in the Southern Gulf of Mexico's Bay of Campeche, Invest 90L, is nearly stationary, and is bringing a few heavy thunderstorms to the Gulf waters and Mexican shore along the Bay of Campeche. Satellite loops show that 90L is poorly organized, with a broad area of spin that is not well-defined, and only limited heavy thunderstorm activity. Radar out of Alvarado shows the storm has developed two low-level spiral bands near the coast that bear watching, though. Wind shear as diagnosed by University of Wisconsin CIMSS is a high 25 - 30 knots, which is keeping the system from developing. Sea surface temperatures (SSTs) in the Southern Gulf of Mexico are about 28°, which is about 0.5° above average. These warm waters do not extend to great depth, and the total heat energy available to intensify a potential storm is rather low. The Hurricane Hunters are on call to investigate 90L Thursday afternoon, if necessary.

Turks Caicos and Belize Leaders in Tourism Growth in the Caribbean
Turks Caicos and Belize were tourism destinations of master growth in the Caribbean during the first quarter of 2014, said official sources here. According to the Caribbean Tourism Organization (CTO), Turks Caicos experienced a 30 percent growth in arrivals during the first quarter, with 105 thousand 506 visitors, compared to the same period of the previous year. Belize welcomed 101 thousand 981 visitors in the first quarter this year, for an increase of 9.7 percent compared to the same periodo f 2013. The other great increase was registered by Cayman Islands, where arrivals increased by nine percent in 2014, according to CTO data. However, in the same period, Grenada had the greatest fall in the sector of this region, with a reduction of 6.6 percent in tourist arrivals, while Curazao saw a drop of 4.3 percent in the same activity.

EU concerned about challenges to small island states
The European Union is has expressed concern about challenges and threats facing the sustainable development of Small Island Developing States (SIDS). In a message to mark World Environment Day on Thursday, Head of the European Union Delegation to Barbados and the Eastern Caribbean, Mikael Barfod, said that while most SIDS have made significant efforts in the past years, the EU wants to see development of tools for measuring the common economic, social and environmental vulnerabilities. According to Barfod, the Third International Conference on SIDS to be held in Samoa in September, "takes place at a crucial time, as several other international processes that clearly relate to SIDS vulnerabilities and resilience are ongoing. On climate change, the EU and SIDS share common objectives and should pursue existing cooperation during the upcoming negotiations.” The EU also supports the implementation of the Warsaw International Mechanism that addresses loss and damage associated with the impacts of climate change. “In terms of development cooperation, the EU has provided significant funding to the Caribbean Community Climate Change Centre (CCCCC), located in Belize and we have just signed a financing agreement for EC$39.5 million to support Climate Change activities in the Organisation of Eastern Caribbean States (OECS),” he said.


Video: DEVELOPING TOLEDO MAY 22, 2014, 33min.
The Belize Trade and Investment Development Service (BELTRAIDE) on PGTV

Video: Coral Reef Restoration in the Caribbean, 3min.
Coral reefs are a Caribbean treasure threatened by climate change, overfishing and pollution. A fisherman in Belize is on a quest to restore this ecosystem with his own hands.

Video: 24th Year Serving Belize-Dr. Paul, 2min.
Dr. Steve (and 38 of our Mission Team volunteers) surprising Dr. Paul Whisnant with a cake to celebrate his 24th year serving as a full time missionary to Belize.

Video: Jack Goes To Belize-HD (720p), 12min.

Video: Holy Cross Belize 2014 Dance, 4min.
The students of Holy Cross Anglican Primary School performed this dance at the 2014 Festival of Arts - winning GOLD. We are so proud of them. Huge thanks to Kim Bartling for all the work she did coaching our students.

Video: Ambergris Caye, Belize Party with friends, 4min.
You need to make a party in Belize with all of us... You will make sure you always go back to Belize.. Thanks to Swim Skinny for this awesome song... Hope you can make the trip with us this year.

Video: Belize!!!, 9min.
Kaya Volunteering

Video: Adventure Tales Belize, 7min.
Living a boys adventure tale

Video: Amazing Solar Powered Home located at Grand Belizean Estates in San Pedro, Ambergris Caye, Belize., 3min.
Peaceful and serene Off-the-grid solar home located at the Grand Belizean Estates subdivision on the west coast of Ambergris Caye has become available for sale. Charming two bedroom one bath, elevated home has nice vaulted ceilings with mixed Belizean Hardwoods, has Santa Maria hardwood floors, fully equipped kitchen, open living and dining area and plycem exterior walls. All exterior wood has been treated. The home sits on a 60 x 75 lot appealingly landscaped with approximately 840 sq. ft. of living space! Separate facility for caretaker (as needed).

June 6, 2014


Click for our Daily Tropical Weather Report.

Specials and Events

Last night's TV news on Channel 7, Channel 5 and CTV 3
Also with the most recent Open Your Eyes, and the Dickie Bradley Specials

The San Pedro Sun

San Pedro Town receives 100 Garbage Containers
On Monday, May 2nd the San Pedro Town Council (SPTC) received 100 garbage containers from an anonymous donor. The garbage containers were painted and bear the slogan “Keep La Isla Bonita Clean”. The containers will be placed in areas throughout the island to promote proper garbage disposal and sanitation. The much needed containers are very welcomed as unsightly garbage has long been one of the major issues on the island.According to councilor in charge of Solid Waste Management Kenrick Bracket, the containers donated will be used primarily in the town core and beach areas. “We have seen that people are littering our beaches and parks, so we are going to be putting some of the new garbage containers along the beach approximately 25 meters apart. We are also going to be placing garbage containers in all the parks, schools, the Sunset Boardwalk and the Honorable Louis Sylvester Arena,” said Bracket.

Favorite Belize treats – the Fry Jack!
One particularly delicious combination to break one’s fast is what we call Maya eggs, with re-fried beans, and, when in season, avocados. To scoop up all that goodness, nothing better than a few puffed and crispy fry jacks. It’s really one of life’s little pleasures to sit down and enjoy such a treat. Made of the same dough as a flour tortilla, instead of baking the flattened disc, we fry it up. Because, of course we would! (We didn’t promise you fat-free anything – and you know you don’t want that anyway! Save the granola and non-fat Greek yogurt for later; fry jacks are worth it…) Celi’s stuffed tortillas also get major love from us. The fabulous ladies at the deli will make thick tortillas that they then slice in half, filling it with a spread of re-fried beans, meats (our favorite is bacon) and cheese. We go so far as to ask for some Marie Sharp’s pepper sauce sprinkled on there too, and when they toast everything up, the cheese melts and the morning can start. If you’re too late for these deliciousities (yes, it’s a word!), have no fear. There’s an alternative: meat pies!

Stakeholders declare Puerto Azul project “preposterous”
According to some of the dive companies in San Pedro Town that offer trips to the Lighthouse Reef Atoll as a tourism attraction, the development will impact nursery and breeding sites for 2/3 of the marine ecosystem, thus impacting the entire atoll. “Northern Two Caye is the largest juvenile habitat for the ecosystem that eventually makes it way out to the rest of the atoll. If we kill Northern Two Caye, we will kill the Blue Hole and we will kill the entire atoll,” said the owner of a San Pedro based tour company that has been operating in the area for over 20 years. According to the tour operator, the area is highly sensitive, and more should be done to ensure the protection instead of the degradation of the atoll. But beside the tour operators, traditional fishermen who are members of the two fishing cooperatives in northern Belize also find their livelihood is at stake. That is because SandboreCaye and Northern Two Caye have been used by traditional fishermen for almost a century as shelter from sudden extreme weather condition. In addition, the two cayes in question are the only place within the atoll they are allowed to shelter and stock up on fresh water while on long fishing trips. More importantly, traditional fishermen also claim that mangrove clearance and dredging will have a direct effect on their usual fishing grounds since it will affect fish, conch and lobster stocks.

Ambergris Today

Participate in San Pedro’s Lobster Fest Lobster Crawl Event!
The San Pedro Lobster Festival Committee is pleased to welcome the public to the San Pedro Lobster Festival 2014 featuring the popular Lobster Crawl Passport Event! This year the Festival will kick off on Saturday, June 14, 2014, with the pre-season opening party. There will be daytime and night time events leading up to the Lobster Fest Central Park Block Party on Saturday, June 21, featuring the musical talents of Supa G and the Pannerifix Steel Band! Each guest attending the Lobster Crawl is given a Lobster Festival “Passport”. In the passport there is a page for each Lobster Festival event; for each page that guests get stamped by the participating venue they are entitled to a raffle ticket. Then on June 21, they bring the “Passport” to Central Park to the Lobster Festival’s official sponsor’s booth. One lucky participant will win a vacation package for 2 to attend the San Pedro Lobster Festival 2015!!

Adrenaline Rush Adventures with San Pedro Water Sports
A vacation in San Pedro, Ambergris Caye, is not a complete one without some adrenaline in your body. Yes, most vacationers tend to only want to relax and lay out on the beach working on their tan. But there are also those who seek adventure and a rush that they cannot find in their hometown. Besides the adventures found underneath the water at the various marine parks there is also much fun to be had above the crystal clear waters of San Pedro Ambergris Caye. San Pedro Water Sports is just the place you need to check out on your next visit to San Pedro. Providing water sports such as paddle boarding, kayaking and jet ski services, there is surely some type of fun for everybody at any level of adventure.

Misc Belizean Sources

San Pedro Town power outage Friday
Belize Electricity Limited advises its customers in San Pedro Town that the supply of electricity will be temporarily interrupted from 7:00 a.m. to 9:00 a.m. on Friday, June 6, 2014. Areas to be affected: North San Pedro from Journey’s End to Tranquillity Bay. BEL apologizes for the inconvenience caused but this scheduled power interruption is necessary for the Company to install intermediate arms to support regulators on the power distribution system in the area.

2014 Dia de San Pedro Fishing Rodeo
IT'S BACK! The Dia de San Pedro Fishing Rodeo will take place on June 29 at the Central Park! ARE YOU READY?

International Costa Maya Festival
Belize will be hosting the annual International Costa Maya Festival from August 7th – 9th, 2014 on the beautiful island of Ambergris Caye. Pageant night is on Thursday, August 7th. Ramon's Village is the host resort for all of the Costa Maya participants! Make plans now to join us for this spectacular event!

Corozal Police News
Stolen GUN from Immigration Officer – 44 year old Antonio Tech, immigration officer of Corozal Town, reported to Corozal Police that on June 3rd, 2014 about 9:15 p.m. he arrived at his house from the Las Vegas Hotel and Casino along with his son Jian Teck, as he was not feeling well and asked his son if he could assist him by taking out his bag out of his vehicle and his firearm which is a black 9mm CZ brand - compact with serial numbers AD2421 with a magazine containing (14) live rounds value $3000.00bcy. His son took out his firearm and placed it under his pillow and told him to secure his house and then left.

Superintendent Alden Dawson from the Belize City Police Department was in San Pedro Town
On Wednesday, June 4, Superintendent Alden Dawson from the Belize City Police Department was in San Pedro Town where he visited the San Pedro Police Department, Mayor Daniel Guerrero, Deputy Mayor Gabriel Nuñez and Councilor Kenrick Brackett where they discussed the crime outbreak happening in San Pedro and how they can tackle the situation.

Corozal featured in Belize Travel Magazine
The beautiful Corozal Bay - Corozal Town - Belize Travel Magazine

"Circo Hermanos Ponce" from Guatemala to perform in Corozal beginning this Saturday Jun 7th at the Civic Center grounds. Bring out the entire family to enjoy two weeks of great fun and entertainment

Senior Computer Technician
A vacancy exists at Belize Electricity Limited for the post of Senior Computer Technician in the Information & Communication Systems Department.

Electrical Technician I
A vacancy exists at Belize Electricity Limited for the post of Electrical Technician I in the Substation Department, Belize City.

Healthy Active Life 5K Run
The 1st ever Healthy Active Life 5K Run will be happening this Sunday morning in Belmopan. The proceeds will go towards Marla's House of Hope. "5K run for everybody but mostly for beginners who want to have a healthy life and they see in this kind of races the best way to start with this new challenge, in Belmopan."

Belmopan Comprehensive Graduation
Congratulations to the Belmopan Comprehensive graduates! Continue on to the next phase.

Journey Exhibit at SISE HoC
The SISE House of Culture is currently displaying the 'Journey' exhibit. It's an insightful collection of art created by Cayo's Stacy Ann Rodriguez. This is one you don't want to miss. Most of the pieces are for sale too, and they are priced right. Picture album on fb.

Western Ballaz Host No Limit in Playoff Game 3
The Western Ballaz triumphed over the No Limit in playoff game 2, and Adma Chuc Photography was there to snap some great pictures of the game. She also got a video of the Ballaz fans after the win. The Ballaz will be hosting the No Limit tonight in what will be their last game together this year. The winner goes to San Pedro to play on Sunday. Head to the game early to see the Benque Viejo Marching Band. Go Ballaz!

Cayo Classifieds - Issue 19
This week's Buy and Sell Classifieds. They have some good deals in there. The feature is about Midas Resort.

The Impressionist of Belize
Art, culture, history; all easily found here in Cayo. Been to Handprint Cave yet? Nat Geo has a great picture of it. Joe Awe wrote an entertaining article about it. He's also written about the Maya in regards to rain water and corn. Keep up the great articles, Joe. "In Belize, one of the most amazing pieces was not on canvas. It was on the walls of a cave. Interestingly, the Hand Print Cave, which gets its name from the tremendous pieces an artist with no name etched on a wall of the cave. By all means, this was a masterpiece! The nerve-wrecking imagination within this person to even conceptualise an image which he or she would take out of his or her imagination to put somewhere else deserves a standing ovation."

Channel 7

Unions, Activist Groups From "Rod Of Correction" Movement; Will They Lash Barrow
In August of 2004, large public protests against the Musa Administration rolled out led by a cluster of social groups. That was 17 months into the administration's second term and it came after both the G7 fissure and the revelations that Government was using Social security money to pay Glenn Godfrey's private debts. 27 months into its second term, the Barrow Administration has not had to face anything close to those kind of internal and external shocks. But that doesn't mean there aren't plenty of hot issues out there, even if they aren't as seismic as G7 or Glenn Godfrey. Many see it as a gathering storm, and today the BNTU called all the agitators for various causes together to try and harness their collective energy, and muster a united front against the Barrow Administration. 7News was at BNTU Headquarters in Belize City to see how it all came together:..

Conservation Groups Come Out Against Puerto Azul, Ask Pointed Questions
One activist group that was not represented at BNTU headquarters today is the conservation community. Right now, they have a lot on their minds with Puerto Azul - and today those groups issued a strong unified position on the controversial project. A statement endorsed by OCEANA Belize, Healthy Reefs For Healthy People Initiative, World Wildlife Fund, MarAlliance, APAMO, Belize Audubon Society, and the Belize Tourism Industry Association are demanding that Government state clearly at what stage this project is. The release listed 7 pointed questions which they want answered. Those questions ask generally about the project, but include queries about those now famous photo bombs from France where Ministers Erwin Contreras and Manuel Herredia are seen profiling with A - List celebrities at the Puerto Azul Launch Party. They ask, "Does the presence of the Minister of Tourism Manuel Heredia and Minister of Trade, Investment Promotion, Private Sector Development and Consumer Protection Erwin Contreras at the project's unveiling in Cannes, France indicate an official endorsement of the project by the Dean Barrow administration?"

Ch'oc Calls Justice Arana's Perfected Order "A Travesty"
But unlike the conservationists, SATIIM's Executive Director Greg Ch'oc is through with asking questions. That's because in its fight against the oil company US Capital, his organization has come to the conclusion that might makes right. Today we got him to comment on the perfected judgment from Justice Michelle Arana. As we've reported, that document significantly weakens SATIIM's legal position because it says that Government must "seek to obtain free, prior, and informed consent." The insertion of the words "seek to obtain" basically means "try your best", but move on if you fail - it does not irrevocably compel the oil company. Ch'oc says it is a travesty:.. Greg Ch'oc, Executive Director, SATIIM "The court going back on its original order is rather unfortunate and a travesty of justice in this country. It is neither here nor there for us because we have concluded that there is absolutely no rule of law in this country. So we could have gotten a case where or an order where US Capital permit was quash, I know that they still would be there now, so it doesn't really matter."

Deon Bruce, Still Fighting Extradition
Belizean Deon Bruce, who is wanted by the US Government for murder and attempted murder, went back to the Supreme Court today after 2 and a half months. Chief Magistrate Ann Marie Smith has already ruled that he should be sent back to the US to face trial for the 2010 shooting of Americans Aaron Carter and Bryan Rodgers, which happened in Chicago on July 28, 2010. Normally, the next stage would have been to take the matter to the Supreme Court where a Habeas Corpus application would have been made. That's in the works, but Bruce's new attorney, Audrey Matura-Shepherd, is challenging it by a second means. She wants Justice Courtney Abel to grant a judicial review of the Chief Magistrate's ruling. As far as we know, that legal avenue has not been explored before, and today, Matura-Shepherd explained it to us outside of court: Audrey Matura Shepherd, attorney "When you are brought before the magistrate court for an extradition matter, once that decision is made there is no appeal, but you can get a writ of habeas corpus saying that you are being wrongly held, but that s very difficult barrier to cross.

Audrey Claims Cops Sweating Yohnny's Employees
And while we had the opportunity, we asked Matura-Shepherd about one of her other clients, Yhony Rosado, and his employees, who are being investigated for the coma inducing assault inflicted upon Vitalino Reyes Jr. She says police are misusing the 48 hour detention limit stipulated by law. She says that for her clients to be held for the entire period police must show justified cause, which, in her opinion, they haven't done at this time: Audrey Matura Shepherd, attorney "The situation and his cave tubing workers is really a tragic situation and I say tragic because there is tragedy on both sides. There is a person who clearly suffers some kind of injury that has left him in a coma for a while and I am told that he is out and there are people on the other side who are being wrongly accused and who are seeking to cooperate with the police.

Drones Over Belize's Seas
This year, the Fisheries Department has been making news with some high profile busts of illegal product, form lobster and conch to sea cucumber. Policing the country's coastline, however, is not an easy task, and it is also very expensive because of fuel costs. In their effort to become more efficient, and the Department is now employing high-tech aerial drones to help with maritime enforcement. The media was invited to the unveiling of these state of the art aircraft which will now be their eyes over the water. Daniel Ortiz reports: Daniel Ortiz reporting It might look like just a remote controlled plane, but this sophisticated new toy for the Fisheries Department is a drone. It is supposed to be the Department's new means of policing Belize's waters in trying to detect illicit activities.

PSU's Contentions Against Contreras
Last night we told you about the controversy that was caused when the Chief Pharmacist Sharon Anderson was snubbed for a training session at PAHO, and the Director of the Drug Inspectorate Danini Contreras was sent in her place. Emails obtained by 7News show that in mid May when PAHO started the conversation about the training the conversation was between Dr. Carlos Ayala and chief Pharmacist Anderson. One email we saw refers to upgrading the technical procedure to ensure the quality of pharmaceuticals and medial supplies. This conversation continued until the 21st. May when it abruptly ended - and that's because higher-ups at the Ministry of Health gave Dr. Ayala the memo - that the training would be for Contreras not for Anderson. That's what has the Public Service Union upset and their Industrial Relations Officer Ray Davis expanded on it today:.. Hon. Ray Davis, PSU Industrial Relations Officer "At the end of the day when the meeting was scheduled she naturally was expecting to be a part of that meeting. She was approached at the level of PAHO. Instructions were given that they should not have communications with her. At the union we found that peculiar because I know of the type of protocol that exists at PAHO and from the information that we got it was a verbal request or directive or however you want to interpret it and that really forced the personnel at PAHO to prevail on the chief pharmacist not to go to the meeting."

Alleged Drivers License Forger Freed
It made big news in April 2011, when Rayford Benguche was caught by the Gang Suppression Unit with materials to mass produce fake driver's licenses. Well, Benguche got to walk out of court a free man today when he was acquitted before Justice Troadio Gonzalez. The allegation against Benguche was that on April 3, 2011, police went to his apartment at 4 Neal Pen Road and found a laminating machine, laminating plastic and a driver's license in the name of Henry Velasquez. He was also allegedly caught with a stamp which said City of Belize Department of Transport. The officers suspected that he intended to commit mass forgery, and so he was charged with preparation for a crime. He stood trial before Justice Gonzalez in which 5 witnesses were called to testify against him, but after those witnesses finished, Benguche's attorney, Simeon Sampson made a no-case submission that the evidence tendered wasn't enough to prove his guilt.

Administrative Tremor At SBB: Senior Staffer Dismissed
There was an administrative tremor at the Social Security Board on Tuesday. Ana Gonzalez, the General Manager in Belmopan and a staffer with some 30 years experience was summarily dismissed, reportedly after a dispute with CEO Richard Flowers. Gonzalez we are told was basically driven out of the Institution's Belmopan Headquarters; sources tell us she was given until 11:00 am to pack up and leave. What's behind the sudden dismissal? Well, we could not reach her for comment but we have learned that she was opposed to certain features of the ongoing Strategic Business Transformation Project. The project is in its second incarnation - and the cost already accrued is expected to be in the tens of thousands of dollars. When it was first embarked upon in 2007, the proposed budget was four hundred thousand dollars.

No One Hurt In Downtown robbery
No one was hurt in a robbery this evening in downtown Belize City. It happened at around 5:15 at the Party Center on North Front Street. An armed man reportedly went into the business, held up the female cashier, and took her to the back to get into the cash pan. He left with an undisclosed amount of money. Police have made no arrests.

BIFF is Back!
The Belize International Film Festival is back for the 9th time, with its opening night gala scheduled for Thursday July 17 at Robert's Grove Resort in Placencia. They've got films from across the globe, including 5 from Belize. Organizer Suzette Zayden told us what to expect at this year's film festival.

The Corn Planting Controversy
As we told you at the top of tonight's news, B(i)GYEA now has major backative for its Plant The Corn Protest on Saturday in Belize City. The collective unions and activist groups have joined with them to form a group they call the R-O-C, a sin the Rod Of Correction - and Saturday is the first time we'll see that rod unveiled. But while the protest is one thing; the deeper issue is what BGYEA plans to do with the 29 acre buffer zone that runs between Harmonyville and the Western Highway. Government has said it must remain untouched as a buffer, but BGYEA is determined to use it to plant corn:.. Jules Vasquez "Are you all still determine to plant corn on the road buffer?" Nigel Petillo, President - BGYEA "The corn has to get plant. Roads have to get build, the buffer has to be maintain, people need to eat, plant has to grow in the ground." Giovannie Brackett, reporter "Concerning the fact that they want to plant corn in the buffer zone area, does the ministry of agriculture have a position on that?" Jose Alpuche, CEO - Ministry of Agriculture "I don't think the issue of the buffer zone is one of agriculture production. As it relates to the development of the land held by the individuals on Harmonyville, of course we would be more than happy to assist them in any way to put the land into productive use. Quite frankly a tricky situation where assets not own by a particular party have been contracted out to others - that's at the end of the day the long and short of the problem at this time."

Stirm On The Christian Way, The activists' Way and Meeting In the Middle
And while Petillo now has the Rod Of Correction Collective behind him, one group we saw today, which we don't usually see amongst activists is the Belize Evangelical Association. And that's because, one, they aren't as focused on worldly matters, and, two, they seem to have a very open door with the Prime Minister - in fact, Church Leaders have even addressed Cabinet this year. So today we asked Evangelical Association representative Stirm how they fit in with this movement:.. Jules Vasquez "The church has it own way of approaching dialogue leaders - that sort of thing, but is it prepared to stand with these social agitators and activists?" Pastor Scott Stirm, Belize Action "Well again, I came representing Belize Action. Pastor Crawford was unable to make it so I was deputizing for him. I think because it affects people the church is very concern and then obviously the issue of good governance. I think that's concern for all of us everybody involved."

Tourist Blues for Sailboating US Couple
American Couple David & Michelle Freund, say that a vacation to Belize has turned into a nightmare after they ran aground on the reef in Southern Belize. On May 16, they chartered a sailboat from a rental company in Placencia, and took a trip out to Ranguana Caye. The next day, while on open waters, they ran aground on the reef. They claim that company reps negligently towed the vessel off the reef breaking off several pieces and doing mass damage. Freund posts on the internet that that it went all downhill from there when the company blamed them for the damages, and which the Port Authority agreed. They were subsequently charged with criminal offences for the damage to the reef, and they were arraigned in magistrate's court. Freund says that he is appalled that his ignorance to Belizean laws was allegedly being exploited by the authorities, and he claims that he has had to ask the US Embassy to intervene on his behalf.

Channel 5

Seven NGO’s Brace GOB on Puerto Azul Project
While controversy has subsided in the respect of the Norwegian Cruise Lines Project on Harvest Caye, opposition is mounting on the Puerto Azul project. Since its over-the-top unveiling a few [...]

Fisheries Administrator Concerned About Project
Concern about Puerto Azul is growing because there is little known about the proposed project. The only information out there is what Belizeans saw and heard in news reports from [...]

ROC Formed to Tackle Injustice
In its second term in office, an organization called ACB, the Association of Concerned Belizeans brought pressure on the Musa administration. ACB dismantled soon after the government changed in 2008 [...]

Deon Bruce Extradition Case Continues in Supreme Court
A judicial review of a decision handed down by Chief Magistrate Ann Marie Smith in the extradition case of Deon Bruce commenced inside the chamber of Justice Courtney Abel today.  [...]

Belize City Man Injured in Motorcycle Accident
Earlier today, a Belize City man riding on a motorcycle collided with a Nissan pathfinder. Emmett Fortune was returning to work when the accident occurred. He fell off his motorbike [...]

Greg Ch’oc Speaks on Perfected Order
On April third, Justice Michelle Arana handed down her judgment in the case of SATIIM et al versus the Government of Belize and U.S. Capital Energy. SATIIM sought an injunction [...]

PSU Waiting on Labour Response in Danini Contreras Dispute
On April thirtieth the Public Service Union sent a letter to the Ministry of Labour asking for intervention in the appointment of Danini Contreras as Director of Drug Inspectorate. Now [...]

CEO Allen is interfering in technical decisions, says PSU
On Wednesday, Danini Contreras attended a teleconference session at PAHO. That in itself is no cause for cause for controversy, but in the current atmosphere at the Ministry of Health, [...]

Matura-Shepherd Says Police Disrespected her Clients
On Wednesday afternoon, five employees of Yhony Rosado’s were arrested as they returned tourists to the Fort Street Tourism Village.  The men were detained pending an ongoing investigation into [...]

Fisheries Use Drones for Monitoring
The Fisheries Department is modernizing; today it received technology to monitor the waters and to better fight illegal activities at sea. After receiving training from Conservation Drones, the officers attached [...]

Sixty videos features at Film Festival
The annual Belize International Film Festival will not open until July, but today, a preview of what you can expect was revealed. The National Institute of Culture of History announced [...]

Talented Students take to the stage
Day Two of the Golden Showcase of the National Festival of Arts was staged today at the Institute of Creative Arts. Taking the spotlight were the best performers from the [...]

Getting Fit At Home…Online!
Getting healthy and staying motivated is difficult. Many of us struggle finding a workout routine that we can stick to. Belizean fitness coach, Joel McD, has embarked on a brand [...]


Elroy Bastarachea Scams Another Land Owner
In November of 2011 we reported on the land scam where then 29 year old Elroy Bastarachera, a resident of Patchakan Village in the Corozal District was accused of scamming approximately $113,370.00 from 52 year old U.S National Victoria Jackson and 74 year old U.S. National Sharon Boniek in two different incidents. At that time the women paid Bastarachea the huge sum for the purchasing of several parcels of prime land which they never received their papers for. Well, actually, Boniek did receive land documents but they were not genuine. In fact even the signature of Commissioner of Lands Wilbert Vallejos had been forged. The women made a report to police and Bastarachea was levied several charges and offered bail which he met. And that is the last we heard from him, that is until he once again made the news last night.

Bastarachea Is A Scam, Says Commissioner Of Lands
While you heard Elroy Bastarachea make reference in that video that Commissioner of Lands, Wilbert Vallejos is his cousin, that’s utterly false says Vallejos, whom we placed a call to this afternoon. Vallejos says in numerous occasions they have warned the public about scam artists, specifically Bastarachea. Wilbert Vallejos– Commissioner of Lands “I don’t understand why people are still allowing themselves to this scam because we issue Press releases over and over warning people about this guy because look like this guy lies at immigration and a lot of things, as a matter of fact he wrote my name of documents but he had to written my name because the documents had the Commissioner of Lands and I am the Commissioner of Lands.”

Elroy Bastarachea Arraigned And Charged In Court
And today Bastarachera was arraigned in court where he pleaded not guilty to 13 charges of obtaining property by deception. He was offered bail to the sum of $10,000.00 plus a surety of the same amount. When we spoke with Grisel Botes, the victim of the land scam she gave us her reactions on the outcome of charges. Grisel Botes – victim “First of all, I don’t want him to get another bail because if he will come out and do the same thing and I just hope that if he cannot give me my money back I rather see him in jail and I want him in jail.” Victor Castillo – Reporter “So what is police saying, what is the outcome of that?” Grisel Botes – victim “Well, I think that we will be having court in August so I have to take all what I have and I just hope that there is justice.”

Visiting American tourists, David and Michelle Freund have found themselves in quite a predicament
Visiting American tourists, David and Michelle Freund have found themselves in quite a predicament while vacationing in Belize. The couple have been detained in Belize for the last two weeks indefinitely. David is faced with “Civil Charges” related to a coral-damaging incident, while sailing, which occurred only two days into their vacation in Belize in May. A blog dedicated as a platform to tell their story alleges that ‘most of the damage was done by Moorings (the boat rental company) when they were improperly towing them off the coral in an aggressive manner in order to conceal their unethical practices of renting to uncertified tourists, failing to provide the renters with proper navigational information and additional safety equipment, and their failure to report the initial incident to the Belize Port Authorities.

The Importance Of Bees As Pollinators
We have reported on the various challenges being faced by bee keepers in Belize including the Small Hive Beetle and flooding. But these tiny insects have a lot more threats and over the last year, concerns have been mounting across the world surrounding their survival and ultimately, the survival of the human species. That is because bees are key pollinators of the food we consume on a daily basis, but they are fast disappearing leaving a trail of worry in all corners of the world. Given that situation, we spoke to key officials in the Ministry of Natural Resources and Agriculture to find out more about that situation in Belize. Dalila Ical – Reporting There are a total of 1, 800 colonies in all six districts with Belize, Orange Walk and Cayo having the largest concentrations. Bee keepers are facing difficulties, but there is no record of bees simply disappearing as reported in Southern France, England, India and china. In the US alone, about six hundred thousand of 2.6 million colonies have vanished. But reports are being made in Italy, Poland Portugal, Central and South America and some reports indicate that these disappearances are happening in a matter of hours. Experts call it the colony collapse disorder.

Tough Weather Challenges For Farmers To Deliver Crop To Mill
Stake holders in the sugar industry continue to monitor the weather as they try to push in as much crop into the mill before the season is closed. The rains have begun and already many farmers are facing difficulties. Alfredo Ortega, Vice Chair of the Committee of Management at the Belize Sugar Cane Farmers Association says it has been very challenging for farmers to harvest their crop since the rains started. Alfredo Ortega “Esta lluvia que experimentamos este fin de semana, bastante difícil para poder cosechar per sin embargo la mayoría de caneros están luchando ver como ellos pueden sacar su cana que tienen maduro. En estos momentos hasta el lunes ya habíamos entregado 159 mil toneladas de caña la cual ha producido 101 mil toneladas de azúcar cual es muy bueno sin embargo tenemos una estimación alrededor de 300 a 350 mil toneladas de caña que está en el campo, sabemos de qué no se va poder cosechar todo pero estamos pidiendo a los líderes de grupo que le una oportunidad a todos los miembros de su grupo cosechándole un porcentaje de esa cana para que hacía el peso no quede sobre unos caneros nada más y se pueda extender sobra la mayoría de caneros para que así juntos podamos absorber esta situación del porcentaje de cana que nos va a quedar a nivel de campo.”

Three Orange Walkeno Receives Annual CITI-CMFA Caribbean Micro-Entrepreneurs Award 2014
Three young microentrepreneurs from Orange Walk are currently in Montegobay, Jamaica tonight, receiving awards at the Annual CITI-CMFA Caribbean MicroEntrepreneurs Award 2014. The winners include; Eider Romero who was named- Best Young Microentrepreneur for his Icy Treats mobile business….. Eliel Reynoso - 2nd Best Young Microentrepreneur with his ‘Hawaianas’ shaved ice business and Eved Corado won for Best Technology Microentrepreneur. The candidates were selected by the board at the La Inmaculada Credit Union and they are expected to return to Belize, tomorrow. Last year to add to their successes, LICU was recognised for its dedication to informing clients of the terms and details of their financial services and actively educating and training them on how best to utilise the Credit Union's services. We will have more on this story inn tomorrows newscast as we will be at the airport to greet these young microentrepreneurs.

International Mexican Artist Passes Away
Internationally renowned Mexican Artist from Chetumal Quintana Roo Elio Carmichael Jiménez the author of the book Los Murales De Congresso, died early this morning after battling cancer for a number of years. We report his death because Jimenez was a promoter of history and culture, including the Mayan Culture from the rise of the Maya, the conquest to the present day highlighting memorable episodes. We also report Jimenez’s death because he has ties to Orange Walk. His mother Valentina Jimenez is originally from Orange Walk and his family lived here for quite some years. In fact Jimenez studied at Saint John’s College in Belize City.

More Irregularities In The Lands Department
Land issues continue to surface and the latest report was made to the Corozal Police Station. Thirty-one year old Grisel Botes, a cosmetologist of Libertad Village in the Corozal District reported to authorities that between April third and June third 2014, she paid Elroy Bastarachea of Patchakan Village for lands located in the San Pedro Island, Belize District and Cayo District. Botes says she paid a total of $23, 875 Belize dollars to Bastarachea whom she also claims is a friend she has known for the last ten years. Botes adds that she made the transactions after Bastarachea told her he worked at the Lands Department and was told that she would have her papers in order within one month from the first payment was made. t That was on April third but up to date she says she has not received anything. An investigation was launched and authorities found out that Elroy Bastarachea has not been working on any papers and even worse, he cannot give account of the money he received. Police have in their possession several vouchers he signed for receiving the money. The thirty-two year old Belizean accountant has been detained for the crime of obtained property by deception and Corozal police continue to investigate the case.

Corozal Police Investigates Hit And Run Incident
A mother and her four year old daughter are lucky to be alive tonight after they were knocked down this morning while they were on their way to school. While information is sketchy reports are that 21 year old Evalicia Tzul was hit from behind while riding her bicycle on 7th Avenue Corozal Town by what is believed to be a grey pickup truck that failed to stop and render aid. When we visited the home of the victim this afternoon, we were informed that she was assisting Corozal Police with her statement. We were made to understand that police are currently looking for one person of interest. Luckily both victims only received minor scrapes on the body.

Sugar Cane Crop Weekly Review
Despite the incessant rains the 2013/2014 crop season continues full speed ahead. Here is a look at the weekly crop review. Carmelita Perez – Reporting June 1st 2014 marked the end of week 19 of the 2013/2014 sugar cane crop season. The report, provided by the Belize Sugar Industries Limited, shows that for week 19 the factory milled forty two thousand one hundred and fifteen tons of cane. To date, the factory has milled a total of nine hundred and fifty nine thousand four hundred and fifty five tons of cane. Last year the factory milled seven hundred and ninety three thousand three hundred and ninety four tons cane during the same time frame. Taking a look at sugar production, three thousand eight hundred and seventy five tons of the sweetener was produced for week 19. An overall of one hundred and one thousand seven hundred and forty six tons of the product has been produced so far. Last year, the factory produced eighty three thousand seven hundred and twenty four tons of sugar during the 19 weeks of crop. This week the factory worked at a grinding rate of six thousand sixteen tons cane per day. Overall, for the 19 weeks of crop, the grinding rate per day stands at seven thousand four hundred and thirty eight tons cane. Last crop it was at six thousand one hundred and fifty tons cane per day.

ESTM Recommends Suspention of Four Teachers for Drowning Incident
Exactly two months ago on today’s date, two teenaged high school students of Escuela Secundaria Tecnica Mexico, fifteen year old Anahi Zepeda and sixteen year old Edgar Puck drowned in the Macal River. The forth formers were on a class trip to the Che Chem Ha Maya Ruin in Benque Viejo del Carmen and upon their return that Friday evening, the bus made an unscheduled stop near the low-lying bridge in San Ignacio. Reports say that Anahi, Edgar and other students were in the water when Anahi was swept away by the current. Edgar, who could not swim, went to her aid and they both drowned. Since then, an intensive investigation into the matter was launched by the Board of Management of Escuela Secundaria Tecnica Mexico and today the results of that investigation was released to the media. The release states and we quote “An intensive investigation was conducted, and the Board has unanimously agreed that the four teachers who accompanied the students erred in modifying the itinerary during the educational trip.” End of quote.


Greg Choc: “….there is absolutely no rule of law in this country.”
Since April, attorneys for the Government of Belize, US Capital and SATIIM, were sharing their own interpretation of the judgment that Justice Michelle Arana handed down on April 3 in regards to the drilling operations inside the Sarstoon Temash National Park. The April 3 judgment demanded that GOB obtain free, prior and informed consent from the Mayan Villagers. But the May 9 perfected judgment, says that Government should “seek” and make good faith attempt to obtain consent from the villagers. Executive Director of SATIIM, Greg Choc, reacted to the perfected order. GREGORY CHOC EXECUTIVE DIRECTOR SATIIM “The court going back to on its original order is rather unfortunate and a travesty of justice in this country. That’s not what article 32 of the United Nations Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous People says. So while the court has discretion in perfecting an order, what I have been told is that it only supports to clarify. So the order of Justice Arana has been globally circulated and that order is what it was when it was handed to us on April 3, 2014. It is neither here or there for us because we have concluded that there is absolutely no rule of law in this country. So we could have gotten an order where the US Capital permit has been quashed. I know that they would still be there now. So it doesn’t really matter; I think It emphasizes the process rather than the result, it’s unfortunate.”

Police Detains Yhony’s Employees
Yesterday five employees of CAVETUBING.COM were detained by police in connection with the brutal attack on Vitalino Reyes Jr. Reyes Jr. is currently at the KHMH in a coma on life support. Vitalino Reyes Sr. is blaming Yhony Rosado and his employees for the attack. Rosado and his employees have strongly denied any involvement in the incident. However, two days ago, police detained and charged Rosado’s employee, Leon Gentle for the attempted murder of Vitalino Reyes Jr. Rosado has retained the legal services of Audrey Matura Shepherd who gave us an update. YHONY ROSADO OWNER CAVETUBING.COM “What was tragic was that when I went to the police station, five of the employees were detained. I mean just because we were caught between the two entities we are being punished and dragged in here. Police have their statements that they were not there but that doesn’t matter.

City Resident Says King Broke His Promise to Her
Lake I resident, Lolita Smith is claiming that her representative Mark King has turned his back on her and her entire family. Smith who has lived all her life in Lake I says that King promised to help her out. But since Election Day, King has not returned to her home much less make good on his promise. LOLITA SMITH LAKE INDEPENDENCE RESIDENT BELIZE CITY “My problem is my house; i need to fix my house and the Area Representative, Mark King promised me that he will fix my house. He came at my gate before the elections with a paper and a pen, asking me a lot of questions like how many sheets of plywood I need for the house. I gave him how many I needed and also zinc and everything else. All I saw him did was write on that piece of paper. He told me Ms. Smith, there’s no need to worry I will see to it that your house is fixed. So far up to now up to today going to 2 years now, I still cannot see anyone coming to check the house or to see what is happening to the house at all. “

Municipalities Scheduled to Present Development Plans
Next week the municipalities involved in the Belize Municipal Development Project will meet in Belmopan to present their development plans. The project is being implemented by the Social Investment Fund at a cost of 30 million dollars and is being financed by the Government through a loan from the World Bank. Urban Planning Officer Keisha Rodriguez told Love News since May of last year they have been working with the planning committees in each of the municipalities to prepare municipal development plans. KEISHA RODRIGUEZ URBAN PLANNING OFFICER BELIZE MUNICIPAL DEVELOPMENT PROJECT “We have worked with them in capacity building in five modules; the first one being assessment of the conditions of the town; the second one being their visioning and development of strategies and scenarios; the third one being their land use proposal and the fourth was the infrastructure planning and investment and the 5th module was the implementation strategies. So these 5 modules that the local planning group has gone through have allowed them to prepare a municipal plan that consists of 5 chapters. So at present we all have 7 municipalities: the city of Belmopan, Benque Viejo Del Carmen, San Ignacio Santa/Elena, Orange Walk Town, Corozal Town, Dangriga, and Punta Gorda having completed the draft and next week they will be making presentations to two stakeholders including government agencies, the Land Department, Department of the Environment and the Ministry of Housing and Urban Development as well as potential funding agencies on their development plans, the infrastructure and investments that they want to have in their town with potential projects. In particular one of the key aspects of the plan are catalyst projects that each municipalities, which are small scale projects in which they can do in a short term and these are just some of the ways in which they can start implementing the plan and the ultimate goal of the plan is to have a guide for future development within these towns and to improve the quality of life for the citizens.”

Injured Manatee Recuperates
Last month we told you of the four manatees that died as a result of boat collision. There was a fifth manatee that was hit by a boat, an adult female, but she survived and is recuperating. Jamal Galvez of the Belize Manatee Conservation Program gave us an update of on how the manatee is doing. JAMAL GALVEZ BELIZE MANATEE CONSERVATION PROGRAM The animal is in open water; it’s not confined to any area. So, there’s not any attention given to the animal. We’re monitoring it, the guys are throwing water hysen in the area in case the animal doesn’t want to leave because normally when animals get hit by a boat or they are sick, they tend to go in these quiet areas to try and recuperate but what they tend to do is not eat and normally these animals die because of not eating rather than from the injury. These animals are resilient, they’re tough they tend to do well healing but during the healing process they tend to not eat and so, we’re just having the guys throwing water hysen. So, food is available if the animal chooses to eat at any point in time. So it’s just basically attention but we’re monitoring from a distance because remember this is a wild animal, it’s a huge animal, we don’t want to impact its behavior and you don’t want to get wild behavior to be able to say that the animal is actually being like a manatee.”

Soft Launch for Belize Film Festival 2014
They may not be featured on the major television networks and they may not make it to the Oscar Awards but sixty low budget films and music videos will be featured in this year’s Belize International Film Festival in Belize which kicks off on July 16, 2014. It is the 9th film festival that will feature an average of six Belize films as Director, Suzette Zayden explained. SUZETTE ZAYDEN DIRECTOR BELIZE FILM FESTIVAL “Out of the 45, there are 6 films that are either by Belizean filmmakers, Belizean filmmakers in the diaspora or by filmmakers who came and did a film about Belize. So that’s what we classify as Belizean films for the festival. There are only 6; that’s pretty much the average of what we’ve been getting; we’ve had less but we have 15 music videos and we had 35 submissions. Some years we’ve had just exactly 15 submissions and all 15 went in, this year we had to turn back. We bring in an international jury of 3 persons to judge the film section. They decide the criteria amongst themselves. For this year, the president is a British-Italian producer, Donald Runveau. He was here in 2005 when he brought a film, Children of God – a movie that was nominated for the Oscars. He’s going to be the President of the jury.

Transition for Students Explained by Secondary Schools Unit
The third form students of Sadie Vernon, Maud Williams and Excelsior High School will go through a transition of sorts as the Ministry of Education announced yesterday that there will be a combining of some classes for the students from the three schools. It was an idea brewing since January 2014 and yesterday, via a press conference, the players in the initiative announced how the synergy came about, the reasons for the concerted efforts and what can be expected for the coming school year. SISTER CARITAS LAWRENCE RSM SECONDARY SCHOOLS UNIT MINISTRY OF EDUCATION “We had meetings with the administrators of three schools and those three administrators agreed that one way to help with the problem would be to come up with one plan for the three schools because the areas of difficulties and challenges were the same. So, we started working on the program and it is not a program that came out of our heads; when we started the Quality Child Friendly School Initiative, I didn’t even dream that three schools would agree to say let us make a plan together, let our staff work together, let us plan together and let us find a way to work our children out of poverty, lack of education and prison.”

Midday Accident Injures Cyclist
A traffic accident occurred around midday today on Mapp Street in Belize City when an Office Assistant received severe ankle injuries after being knocked down off his motorcycle. Reports are that 44-year-old, Emmet Fortune of a North Creek Road address was riding his motorcycle on Mapp Street when he was hit by a Nissan Pathfinder SUV being driven at the time by 36-year-old, Roberto Carrillo of University Heights in Belize City. The extent of the damages caused to Fortune in yet to be ascertained but we can tell you that a notice of intended prosecution has been served on Carrillo. Investigations into the incident continue.


Social Partners Join Forces to Act as “Rod of Correction”
“In Unity There is Strength!”, goes the old saying, and if the gathering of community and social activists and official social partner organizations on display at the headquarters of the Belize National Teachers’ Union (BNTU) in Belize City this morning is any indication, then the Government may have something...

Deon Bruce Challenges Extradition Decision in Judicial Review
There was some legal history today in Belize City, as for the first time in a case involving extradition, there has been a challenge mounted to the lower court’s actual decision in addition to the standard habeas corpus application filed in such cases. 28 year old Deon Bruce is accused of...

Identification Parade of Accused Police Officers in San Ignacio
Charges are expected to be levied against 4 officers attached to the San Ignacio Formation after a shooting incident at Unitedville left one teenager hospitalized. According to reports made by 19 year old Elston Arnold, on Monday May 26th, he and a few friends were returning from a wake...

Disc Jockey Charged for Sex with Runaway Teen
24 year old disc jockey Elvis Sutherland turned himself in on Monday to police and appeared in court today on a charge of unlawful sexual intercourse with a minor aged 14 years and under. His victim was a 14 year old student. The minor and her mother told police that on April...

Two Teenagers Apprehended After Foiled Robbery Attempt
Quick police response led to the apprehension of two would be robbers, teenagers for that matter.  According to police reports on Wednesday, June 4th, at a store located at Santiago Juan Lay Out Area, San Ignacio, a 41 year old woman, while inside her kitchen, heard her daughter- in-...

City Man Acquitted of Preparing to Commit Crime
Supreme Court Justice Troadio Gonzalez today ordered Rayford Benguche to be acquitted by a jury of nine on a charge of preparation to commit a crime, specifically forgery. He is accused of being in possession of various tools, specifically a rubber stamp, laminating machine, laminating plastic, and a driver’s...

The Prosecution of David Taylor Given One Final Adjournment
British Belizean David Taylor, an accused paedophile, appeared before the Magistrate Americia De Moya at the Magistrate’s court in Placencia on Wednesday, June 4th to answer to charges of pornographic exploitation of 4 boys in Placencia, and for the crime of having sexual relations with a 13 year old...

SATIIM Displeased with Perfected Court Order
The victory thought to have been won by Sarstoon Temash Institute of Indigenous Management (SATIIM) in April of this year, where Justice Michelle Arana ordered the Government to enter into good faith negotiations with the Maya communities in the buffer zone of the Park before allowing U.S. Capital Energy...

BGYEA Previews Saturday Rally
They face the Supreme Court next week, but the Belize Grassroots Youth Empowerment Association (BGYEA) will not be alone as they seek to overturn an injunction barring their corn-planting project in the Harmonyville buffer zone. Today president Nigel Petillo gave thanks for the support of fellow organizations that have...

Cavetubing Workers Detained as Police Continue Investigations Into Reyes’ Beating
Police are continuing their investigations into the brutal beating of Vitalino Reyes Jr.  Yesterday we showed you Yohnny Rosado at the Queen Street Police Station where he had gone to see to five of his workers who were detained by police in connection with their investigation into the attack...

Conservation Community Gravely Concerned Over Puerto Azul Project
The proposed project to transform the Northern Two Caye and Sandbore, located in the Lighthouse Reef Atoll into an exclusive resort complete with airport runway and massive marina has raised many eyebrows and the environmental community is now sounding the alarm. Earlier this week,  Michael Singh, CEO in the...

The Guardian

Better Secondary Education taking Shape
“We can succeed only by concert. It is not can any of us imagine better? but, can we all do better? The dogmas of the quiet past are inadequate to the stormy present. The occasion is piled high with difficulty, and we must rise - with the occasion. As our case is new, so we must think anew, and act anew. We must disenthrall ourselves, and then we shall save our country.”- President Abraham Lincoln Hon. Patrick Faber referred to this quote from President Lincoln when the Ministry of Education launched the Belize Education Sector Reform on January 16th, 2013. He has said numerous times, “We all know the problems that exist in the education sector; the question is do we have the guts to fix them.” Minister Faber has taken hits from critics for every reform he has championed; including, introduction of the Teaching Services Commission, ban on corporal punishment and the reform of secondary school financing. Now the Minister’s critics are accusing him of attempting to amalgamate three high schools on the Southside of Belize City.

Ensuring Energy Security
The Public Utilities Commission along with the Ministry of Energy, Science and Technology and Belize Electricity Limited began a request for proposals for electricity generation in October of last year. BEL is looking for a provider or providers to supply 60 megawatts of firm capacity and 15 megawatts of renewable energy from intermittent sources. Investments in these power sources will run anywhere between 200 and 400 million Belize dollars. After 8 months since the start of the exercise, the PUC publicly opened bids which have been received so far. The exercise took place at BEL’s corporate headquarters and was witnessed by representatives of bidding companies, representatives of the ministry, BEL, the PUC and the media. At the end there were 20 submissions each with its distinct type of energy source, company who will supply, cost of installation and cost of kilowatt hour to BEL. Public Utilities Commission Chairman, John Avery, explained that there were bids for hydro electric projects, biomass projects that will use sugar cane bagasse, ethanol, and cuhune; there were also thermal projects that would burn natural gas, diesel or heavy fuels. There was one wind power proposal as well as multiple solar energy projects.

Boldness Solidarity Determination: UDP Women Celebrate 25
On May 27, 1989, thirty-eight bold women joined together and formed the United Democratic Party’s National Organization of Women (UDP-NOW). Their goal was to place women issues on the forefront of the party’s national agenda. These bold women would lobby for equal treatment, greater educational opportunities, pathway to decent work and positions at the highest decision making tables of the country. 25 years later, there is still much work to be done in the area of women empowerment. However, whether it is Hon. Faith Babb at the national political level or women like Kathy Esquivel in civil society, the efforts of the great 38 have paved the way for women of today to shatter any glass ceiling that stubbornly continues to exist. It is for that reason that the United Democratic Party honoured the Great 38 on the 25th Anniversary of UDP-NOW on Saturday, May 31. Hundreds of women from across the country gathered on the House of Culture grounds on Saturday to celebrate the UDP-NOW’s 25th Anniversary. Anne Marie Williams hosted the event and speeches were delivered by Diane Haylock, President of UDP-NOW, and Alberto August, Chairman of the UDP. Jackie Castillo pumped up the ladies in attendance with her motivational song ‘We are Women In Charge’. August then handed out certificates of appreciation to the Great 38.

Joseph Roland Bermudez Accused of Hitting Ex-wife with a Vehicle
On Friday, May 30, a 39-year-old Contractor of Santa Elena Town, Joseph Roland Bermudez, was before the court to answer to four criminal charges after he allegedly knocked down his ex-wife with his vehicle. Allegations are that on Thursday, May 29, Bermudez hit his ex-commom-law-wife with a vehicle in front of her work place at Courts Belize Ltd. Bermudez, who already had a restraining order taken out against him says he went to Courts Belize to get his vehicle from his ex-common-law wife as his visitation rights entitles him to get his son from her at work. He says that when he went to do so, as he was driving off, the ex ran to the vehicle and started to break the windows. It was then that he allegedly hit her with the vehicle causing injuries to her left elbow, chin and left leg.

Dwayne Bradley an Accused Ganja Farmer
Dwayne Bradley of Biscayne Village is out on bail after he was charged with cultivation of marijuana and drug trafficking. According to reports, police officers from the Anti Drug Unit busted the 24-year-old Bradley with 101 marijuana trees and 73.6 grams of marijuana. Police say that on May 29 at about 2:30 p.m. between Miles 29 and 30 in Biscayne Village they discovered a small marijuana plantation with mature plants ranging from 2 to 7 feet in height. There they found a black beach cruiser bicycle near a green tent. Inside the tent police found a carton box and a camouflage jacket which contained six $100 bills and eight $50 bills. Bradley, who is linked to the tent, was detained and charged. In court on Friday, May 30, Bradley was read two drug related charges: one count of drug trafficking for having 73.6 grams of marijuana in his possession and one count of cultivation of controlled drugs for 101 Class B trees ranging from 2 to 7 feet in height. Bradley told Magistrate Hettie Mae Stewart that he had the drugs to sell but the Magistrate was not convinced he understood the nature of the charges and entered an equivocal plea of not guilty on Bradley’s behalf. There was no objection to bail which was offered in the sum of $3,000 plus one surety of the same amount. Dwayne Bradley’s next court date is set for July 31.

Cayo Man in Serious Condition after traffic accident
A man from the Cayo District is now in serious condition at the Karl Heusner Memorial Hospital (KHMH) after being involved in a traffic accident. Eighteen year old Byron Estevan Marcina ran his motorcycle into a lamp post on George Price Avenue in Santa Elena Town at about 10:20 pm on Saturday of this past weekend. The impact of Byron Estevan Marcina with the lamp post caused him to be thrown violently and as a result he went into an unconscious state. He was discovered by San Ignacio Police on that night bleeding from the face. He was immediately transported to the San Ignacio Town Hospital and then to the KHMH. His passenger Jevone Guerra was apparently unhurt in this accident. Byron Marcina was a laborer, who resided in the Hillview Area in Santa Elena Town.

Mark Gentle, 25 on remand for use of deadly means of harm
Belize City Stevedore, Mark Gentle, is on remand at the Belize Central Prison for one count of deadly means of harm and one count of wounding upon Radman Welch whom he allegedly shot on May 12. Gentle appeared before Chief Magistrate, Anne Marie Smith, where the charges were read. He was represented by attorney Alifah Elrington-Hyde who made a submission asking for the charge to be withdrawn since the virtual complainant had retracted his statement and requested that no further court action be taken. Elrington-Hyde said she had a memorandum in her possession but Chief Magistrate Smith said her office had received no such directive from the DPP’s office; therefore, the case would proceed. Due to the nature of the offense, bail was not granted to Gentle and he will be on remand at the Belize Central Prison until his next court appearance on June 27.

Honduran National killed in Cayo
A Honduran national has died after being hit on the head in the Cayo District. Oscar Armando Gomez Alvarez, 28 years old, died of injuries he sustained about three weeks ago at the hands of an unknown person. From that time, Oscar Alvarez had received two large chop wounds to the left side of his face and four on the left shoulder area where he had received treatment at the Western Regional Hospital in Belmopan and then released. The Honduran National, who was illegally in the Country, was discovered by a ten year old male child, dead on Wednesday of last week at about 4:00 PM in Los Tambos Village. He was found on a bed foaming from his nose and mouth. Beside his shirtless body was a large piece of board. The body was located on a farm on the outskirts of Los Tambos.

Jerson Grinage Charged with Drug Trafficking
Jerson Grinage, 21, of the Mahogany Heights community has been arraigned on a single count of drug trafficking. Allegations are that police busted him with 100.1 grams of cannabis in Mahogany Heights on Saturday, May 31. Grinage appeared before Chief Magistrate Anne Marie Smith on Monday, June 2, and pleaded not guilty to a charge of possession of a controlled drug with the intent to supply (drug trafficking). There was no objection to bail which was offered by the Chief Magistrate in the sum of $1,000 plus one surety of the same amount. Grinage was also ordered by the court to surrender his travelling documents to the Clerk of Court and report to the Mahogany Heights Police Station every Monday between the hours of 7 a.m. and 7 p.m. He must not apply for any other travelling documents and he is not to leave the country without the court’s permission. Grinage’s case has been adjourned to July 31.

Another San Pedro Man Murdered
Alfred Kelvin, a 49 year-old San Pedro resident who is originally from Corozal, was killed on the island on Saturday, May 31, in the early morning hours. Just before 2 a.m., San Pedro police officers were on patrol in the San Juan area, and they spotted Kelvin standing in front of Richie’s Supermarket on Pescador Drive. The business place had long since closed for the night, and so he was loitering. The officers kindly requested that he move from the location and go home, and he complied.

Lloyd Alexander King to Stand Trial for Murder of Ronald Rivers
Lloyd Alexander King was charged for the March 4, 2013 murder of Belize City Tour Guide and popular basketball player, Ronald Rivers. Rivers was ambushed while fixing his car near the BelChina gas station. He was shot and rushed to the Karl Heusner Memorial Hospital where he underwent a number of surgeries to remove a bullet that was lodged in his body. However, after three weeks of treatment and numerous blood transfusions he succumbed to his injuries. On Tuesday, June 3, a preliminary case for murder against King was concluded before Senior Magistrate Sharon Fraser. During the preliminary inquiry, King was unrepresented and did not challenge any of the prosecution’s evidence. King was asked if he has any alibi witness and he said no. Senior Magistrate Fraser gave him up until June 10 to provide the court with an alibi witness should he have any at the time.

Elvin Penner back in court
The PUP backed organization, Citizens Organized For Liberty Through Action (COLA), has 4 weeks to come up with evidence against Cayo Northeast Area Representative Elvin Penner, or else the case draws closer to being struck out of court. He’s currently facing 2 criminal charges under the Belize Passport Act, and the Belize Nationality Act, in a private prosecution brought by Geovannie Brackett and Nedal McLaren of COLA. On Thursday, May 29, Penner went back before Magistrate Aretha Ford in the Belmopan Court for an adjournment, when COLA and their attorney, Kareem Musa, was supposed to have provided disclosure. Readers may be aware that when disclosure is promised, that is usually when the prosecutor is able to provide a copy of all the evidence against an accused person. It usually comes in the form of witness statements, exhibits and other materials that the prosecutor intends to use to convince the court that a defendant is guilty of a crime.

South Side constituencies benefit from Municipal Development Project
The United Democratic Party keeps blazing a trail of development in the South Side Constituencies of Lake Independence, Port Loyola, Collett and Pickstock. Over the past couple of weeks, workers and materials have been mobilized in over a dozen streets in these constituencies. Under the Prime Minister, Hon. Dean Barrow's 10 million dollar pledge to the Belize City Council for infrastructure works, 2 million dollars has been air marked for earthen streets. The project is such that area representatives from the 4 named South Side constituencies put in the name of the streets that they would like to take priority and resources are invested in them. Finances are secured from central government and the Belize City Council provides labor, expertise and heavy equipment.

Untrained Redundant Teachers to Receive Pension for Life?
In an effort to improve quality of education and maximize resources, Maud Williams, Sadie Vernon and Excelsior High Schools are merging their curricula. This school year the three schools combined to enroll a little more than 500 students. To educate those 500 students the schools had 61 teachers. That is about eight students per teacher when the minimal acceptable ratio is 15 students per teacher. Now that secondary school financing is no longer based on teacher salaries but instead on student enrollment, schools are forced to discontinue such obvious exercise of inefficiency. The curricula merger has resulted in some teachers being redundant. The schools have not yet finalized how many teachers will be needed for the upcoming school year but it certainly will not be 61. Included in the teachers that will be declared redundant are those who are not trained in pedagogical methods and have not attempted to do so. Minister Faber says those are the teachers he is most disappointed in because the Ministry urged them numerous times and provided ample opportunities for them to get pedagogical training.

Massive Turnout for Cancer Walk 2014
“Facts Can Save Lives… Power Up!!!!” The Belize Cancer Society held its annual Cancer Walk on Saturday, May 31, and a record number of participants showed up to help raise awareness on the indiscriminate disease. Despite a bleak weather forecast, Belizeans got out of bed early on Saturday to show their resilience against the disease or support for loved ones who are and have battled cancer. The symbolic walk has done a lot to raise awareness on all types of cancer. The event has grown significantly every year; going from a small crowd of Cancer Society reps and community organizers in 1996 to a national assembling event. Men, women and children of all ages, races and social backgrounds lined up in front of Celina’s in Ladyville Village for a 5 a.m. start time. Some were driven to the commencement site but most boarded buses to reach. The Belize Cancer Society had pick up spots in front of the Belize Water Services Limited, Pallotti High School, Channel 5 building, Friendship Restaurant and Brodies Supermarket on the highway. Participants had various reasons for taking on the nine-mile journey from Ladyville to the Belize Cancer Society headquarters on Mercy Lane in Belize City. Most participants came out in support of a relative or friend who had been diagnosed with cancer. There were also a number of cancer survivors who continue to support others engaged in their battles. A number of participants also walked in memory of loved ones who had lost their fight. Quite a huge number of people participated who say they have no personal experience with the disease or no recollection of it affecting any relative but they want to walk in solidarity with other Belizeans affected. Corporate sponsors offered their support in financial or organizational assistance. Bowen and Bowen and San Cas handed out water and juices.

Placencia Mangrove Planting Project Organized in Memory of Environmentalist Adrian Vernon
On Friday morning more than forty volunteers gathered in the Crimson Development community area of Placencia Village to participate in a mangrove planting activity organized in memory of environmentalist Adrian Vernon. Approximately four hundred seedlings were planted by members of the Vernon family, the World Wildlife Fund, the Southern Environmental Association, Oceana, the Placencia Village Council, Placencia Citizens for Sustainable Development, the Placencia Fishermen’s Cooperative, Friends of the Placencia Lagoon and the Coco Plum Resort and Residential Development. The mangroves now line the canal adjacent to the Placencia airstrip and will serve as a buffer for the residential plots of the Crimson Development community area.

Saint Ignatius Evening High School in Cayo - The school of a second chance
For the first time in the history of the Saint Ignatius High School in Santa Elena Town, in the Cayo District, a joint graduation will be held this coming June 7, 2014 at the Octavia Waight Center Convention Hall, bringing together both the day and night divisions. Those 42 graduates from the evening and night time classes had an opportunity to celebrate their achievement on Friday night of last week at the Saint Ignatius High School. Present for the celebratory occasion last Friday were members of the Board of Directors, Manager of Schools as well as prominent members of the Cayo Community. Director of the comprehensive programs of the evening school time at Saint Ignatius, Cynthia Ellis, described it as “…a time of appreciation and achievement, we can be proud and confident that we have strong visionaries and leaders for Belize.” Past students at the evening division at Saint Ignatius, such as talented singer Carolina Bonilla, who is now taking international business and environmental science at Galen University, encouraged the students to surpass their obstacles, saying “I am proud of you, because I was here with you.”

Belizean athletes medalled at Central American Junior Championship
The Belize Athletics Association participated in the Central American Junior Athletics Championship that held in Managua, Nicaragua from the 23rd to the 25th May, 2014. Belize had representation in the following events and by the following athletes in the Jr. B Female category: Shanicka Augustine in the 100m, Long Jump and Triple Jump; Ashanti Carr in Shot-put, Long Jump and Triple Jump; Ashonti Carr in 400m, Shot-put, and Long Jump; Deannia Cooke in 100m and 200m; Zhanea Jex in 100m, 200m and 400m; Julia Puerto in the 1500m and 3000m and Catherine Tan in the Shot-put, Discus and Javelin. The Belize Athletics Association would like to take this opportunity to thank the National Olympic Committee, Atlantic Bank Limited, RF&G Insurance, Atlantic Insurance Co. Ltd., Belize Bank Limited, Atlantic International Bank Limited, the Minister of Sports Hon. Herman Longsworth, the various high schools and parents for their support.

Patrick Jones

Conservation groups want government’s position on Puerto Azul project
The proposed Puerto Azul development project within the Lighthouse Reef Atoll has raised “substantial alarm” within Belize’s conservation community. An alliance of conservation groups including Oceana-Belize, Healthy Reefs for Healthy People and the Belize Audubon Society today issued a statement calling on government to make an official statement on the exact status of the proposed resort development project. The conservation community statement also lists 7 of what it says is a long list of questions that needs answers, including whether or not the terms of reference for the project or the EIA has been finalized, whether the presence of Ministers Heredia and Contreras at the project’s unveiling in Cannes, France indicates an official endorsement of the project by government and whether the large amount of money being spent to promote Puerto Azul is not just an attempt to legitimize a “highly speculative venture.”

Attorney asks: is it right for the police hold Cavetubing workers?
On Wednesday evening, five employees of, owned by Yohnny Rosado were detained by police in connection with their investigation into the attack on competitor Vitalino Reyes Sr.’s son, Vitalino Jr. Vitalino Reyes, Jr is recovering from being kicked and hit in the head with a pint bottle at the Long Island Bar one week ago today. According to attorney Audrey Matura-Shepherd, who has been advising Rosado legally, police have stonewalled her attempts to find out whether the workers are being charged for anything, despite voluntarily giving their statements and cooperating with the investigation. Police have even refused, according to Matura-Shepherd, to accept her cooperation to bring the workers in to talk if they are not charged. They hold to the line that the detentions are part of their investigation into the incident.

Deon Bruce challenges extradition decision in judicial review
There was some legal history today in Belize City, as for the first time in a case involving extradition, there has been a challenge mounted to the lower court’s actual decision in addition to the standard habeas corpus application filed in such cases. 28 year old Deon Bruce is accused of murder and related charges in the United States and Chief Magistrate Ann-Marie Smith ordered him to be extradited to stand trial in Chicago, Illinois earlier this year. But Bruce’s attorney Audrey Matura-Shepherd is challenging how she arrived at the decision via judicial review. She told reporters that there is precedent for simultaneous cases such as this in UK law and that the case against the extradition decision is solid.

Hicatee hatchling unveiled in Toledo
he Toledo Institute for Development and the Environment, TIDE is reporting success in incubating a set off Hicatee eggs rescued late last year. A posting on TIDE’s Facebook page today reported that the first hatchling was recorded on Wednesday by the organization’s Private Protected Lands project. According to the social media post “during the first week of December 2013, the rangers came across an eroding bank with a set of Hicatee eggs. The team decided to incubate the set of eggs to learn more about this data-deficient species.”

SATIIM displeased with perfected Supreme Court order
The victory thought to have been won by Sarstoon Temash Institute of Indigenous Management (SATIIM) in April of this year, appears to have been watered down. At least that is the perspective of SATIIM and its executive director Gregory Choc. In the April ruling, Justice Michelle Arana ordered the Government to enter into good faith negotiations with the Maya communities in the buffer zone of the Sarstoon Temash National Park before allowing U.S. Capital Energy to continue work in the area. But a perfected version of the court order released last week shows that Justice Arana made a very important edit, in which Government is now asked to “seek to obtain free, prior, and informed consent.” The normally mild-mannered executive director of SATIIM, Gregory Ch’oc, let loose with a tightly controlled display of frustration at what he says is a stacked deck.

Social partners unite as “Rod of Correction”
In unity there is strength, goes the old saying, and social partners from across the spectrum of issues – land, governance, democracy, society, labour and many more – have joined forces to form a new organization that puts all these issues on a level playing field. President of the National Trade Union Congress of Belize, Dylan Reneau, says they have been frustrated with their approach to Government and find it necessary to cooperate, beginning with Saturday’s Plant Di Corn Rally in support of BGYEA in Belize City. The new Rod of Correction will employ dialogue with Government among its strategies, but things seem to be building up to a national demonstration like the one in 2005, which also featured union leadership. Reneau says that though he is tired of the same formula, he is prepared to use it if need be.


What’s new and upcoming on La Isla Bonita
The reason I was out and about taking San Pablo pictures is Cowboy had wanted to take Maria up on her rein check for more gravy after their weekly Tuesday closure at Georges Kitchen. He texted around 12:30 and told me he could go for late breakfast as soon as Wachee got back in 20 min. So I finished up my work was about to walk east to go meet him, I got as far as locking our gate before I was offered a ride. It was hot so I gladly accepted, so much for increasing my daily steps lol. Thanks to a bank line up, 20 min turned into Belize time fast and it took us about 2h to be ready to leave turning our late breakfast into a late lunch – we barely made it before 3:00pm closing time. By that time I was so hungry I managed one pic of Cowboy’s breakfast and got sidetracked as soon as my steak and eggs showed up. Did you know that they do not usually give change out in rolls at Belize banks? It will often come in envelopes or clear plastic bags like the dollars below.

A Recent Traveler Answers the Question: WHY BELIZE?
One of the things I heard most after telling people that Mike (my husband) and I vacationed in Belize this past March was, “Belize? Where is that?” To be fair, I didn’t know where it was before Mike suggested we go. Now that we’re back, though, with 9 days in paradise under our belts, I tell everyone who will listen to go to Belize. And here’s why. Well, let’s start with the best reason. This water. Such as plain and simple logistics. To many, Belize sounds exotic and half a world away, but our flight to Belize was a non-stop, 2.5 hour flight. (We live in Texas.) We left at noon and arrived before dinner. It takes longer (for us) to fly to California than to Belize. When we honeymooned in St. John, we left before the sunrise, stopped in Miami, stopped in Puerto Rico, landed in St. Thomas, rented a car, took the ferry to St. John, drove across the island, and finally got to our rental house twelve hours after our early morning flight. That’s an entire day lost to travel.

San Ignacio Belize: The Top 7 Cultural Attractions
San Ignacio, Belize is a small lovely town located on the Cayo region of the country and mere minutes away from the border with Guatemala. Considered as the heartland of the Belizean Mayan World, San Ignacio has its fair share of cultural and adventure attractions, even for those who travel with a tight budget. Here’s some of my favorite ones: 1. Discover the Cave of the Crystal Maiden (Actun Tunichil Muknal or ATM) 2. Explore the charm of the downtown 3. Climb the ancient Mayan Pyramids: 4. Enjoy horseback riding 5. Learn about the unique history of Belize 6. Go tubing down the river 7. Visit the Iguana Conservation Center

International Sources

Sotheby's International Realty Brand Enters Belize
Sotheby's International Realty Affiliates LLC today announced its luxury real estate services are now available in Belize with the opening of Belize Sotheby's International Realty, owned and operated by McCann & Fisher Ltd. The firm, which is managed by Shane and Brittany McCann, serves the luxury residential real estate market throughout Belize and is located at Barrier Reef Drive in San Pedro, Ambergris Caye. "Ambergris Caye is considered one of the most desirable islands in the world," said Philip White, president and chief executive officer, Sotheby's International Realty Affiliates LLC. "The lifestyle offered there is coveted by people everywhere. Belize is home to the second largest barrier reef in the world, ancient Mayan Ruins, water falls, caves and the well-known Great Blue Hole. We are proud to be able to offer our services in this beautiful and unique market." According to Brittany McCann the affiliation with the Sotheby's International Realty(R) brand will help achieve their goal of raising the bar in Belize's real estate market. "We also want to help promote the economic growth of our country, and we believe the Sotheby's International Realty brand will help change the dynamics of the real estate market in Belize," she said. "Our company has raised the standards of service and ethics here in the property and rental management field, and this has set us apart from other real estate groups in the country. It is our mission to be the best in the industry and build a team of knowledgeable professionals, and we will continue this as we grow with the brand."

Houstonians behind Sotheby's deal to enter Belize luxe home market
Two Houstonians are behind New York-based Sotheby’s International Realty Inc.'s latest venture — this time into Belize. The real estate subsidiary of Sotheby’s auction house has opened Belize Sotheby's International Realty after inking a deal with McCann & Fisher Ltd., which will own and operate the brokerage. The McCann part of that namesake comes from Shane and Brittany McCann, both native Houstonians who studied marketing at the University of Houston's Bauer College of Business. The husband and wife business team have lived in Belize since 2010 and have worked in the vacation rental and property management businesses. Belize Sotheby's will serve the luxury residential real estate market on Belize's mainland and islands and has set up shop in San Pedro, which is on the island of Ambergris Caye.

Bird migration contains down-to-earth lessons
It’s a spring tradition now, more than 25 years in the making. Slices of juicy, fragrant oranges impaled on wooden pegs send an invitation skyward. Two small bowls of grape jelly and strawberry jam await visitors beneath a small cedar shelter hanging from a clothesline post. The feeders are filled with black birdseed. On a table near the windows in the family room rest a pair of binoculars and my time-honored Peterson Field Guide. Two key points in the link that brings bursts of color and song to our part of the world are Belize and the Osa Peninsula of southwestern Costa Rica. The Natural Resources Foundation of Wisconsin points out that 55 species of Wisconsin birds spend the winter in the Osa Peninsula. Belize, located just west of Guatemala and north of Honduras in Central America, provides welcoming habitat for about 80 species of birds that make their way to Wisconsin. It’s apparent that the habitat of those faraway places as well as the habitat here will have a say in the future of bird species we call our own.

Importing Food Is Damaging The Caribbean: Why No Action?
It is shameful that golden opportunities to produce more food in the Caribbean and significantly reduce the astronomically high annual food import bill of US$4.75 billion are being woefully neglected. If this misguided trend continues, the economies of many of the countries of the region will be increasingly imperilled. At a time of very low or no economic growth, extremely high ratios of debt-to-Gross Domestic Product (GDP) and declining foreign exchange earnings in many of the 14 independent nations that comprise the Caribbean Community (CARICOM), the majority of them continue to spend huge sums on buying food outside the Caribbean. In 2013, only four countries were exceptions to those with unsustainably high debt to GDP ratios. They were: Haiti 21.3%, Suriname 29.2%, Trinidad and Tobago 30.6%, and Bahamas 56.3%. Of the others, Jamaica 138.9 %, Grenada 115%, St Kitts-Nevis 104.9% and Antigua and Barbuda 92.9% have the highest debt-to-GDP ratio. At the lower end of the unsustainable high debt-to-GDP ratio are Guyana 63.9%, Dominica 74.95, Belize 75.5%, and St Vincent and the Grenadines 76.4% (source IMF and World Bank). It should be noted that in the case of Haiti, while its debt-to-GDP ratio is low, it has the highest rate of poverty at 77% of its population. Other countries with high levels of poverty are: Belize 41.3%, Grenada 37.7%, Guyana 36.1%, and St Vincent and the Grenadines 30.2%.

Tropical Depression may form this weekend
An area of disturbed weather over the southwestern Gulf of Mexico is being monitored closely for tropical development over the next few days. According to AccuWeather Meteorologist Rob Miller, “While conditions are somewhat favorable for development in the low levels of the atmosphere, conditions are hostile for development aloft.” Miller is referring to disruptive winds at middle and upper levels of the atmosphere known as wind shear. These westerly winds often cause a developing or established tropical system to lean to the right and can cause dry air to invade the storm’s circulation. “Because of the wind shear, we may see a low-level circulation move westward toward the coast of Mexico and the upper part of the system driven off to the east over time,” Miller said. It is possible that some of that moisture in the form of drenching showers and thunderstorms could be steered over part of Florida and the Bahamas next week. “Should the system develop a low-level circulation we will be likely be only dealing with a minimal tropical system, such as tropical depression or tropical storm,” Miller said.

Best Caribbean resorts for anniversary trips
Whichever anniversary you're celebrating, gold — as in sunshine and sandy beaches — is always appreciated and the right Caribbean resort can help you make that milestone memorable. While there are honeymoon resorts that are also great choices for the more experienced, without the distraction of a recent marriage you may be just as interested in great food, a spa and outdoor activities as in the indoor amenities. The key to getting the trip that will rock your romantic Richter scale is to pinpoint what you both want and, when you find it, say "I do" — quickly. If you were casting a location for a movie about a forest hideaway, Blancaneaux Lodge would be perfect. It should be — it was built by film director Francis Ford Coppola. It's not simple to get to — a couple of hours over sketchy roads from Belize City — on purpose. Perched on the edge of the Mountain Pine Ridge Forest Reserve in western Belize, the Lodge has just 20 rooms along Privassion Creek. The hilly grounds are punctuated by waterfalls and festooned with wild orchids. It seems less like a hotel and more like your fabulously rich uncle invited you to enjoy his mountain estate — an estate that happens to have a pair of restaurants, a spa with a natural hot spring and a nice wine list featuring (surprise) Coppola's own wines. There's no beachfront stocked with windsurfers and kayaks but there are swimming holes in the pristine river and day trips to the Maya ruins at Caracol and Tikal, horseback riding, mountain biking and just taking in some of the hemisphere's most peaceful scenery from the deck of your thatch-roofed cabana. That should inspire some Oscar-worthy moments.

US, Partners Begin Military Exercises In Caribbean
Members of 11 Caribbean partner nations joined the U.S. and Canadian militaries in Antigua to kick off Phase I of Tradewinds 2014. The exercise, hosted in Antigua and Barbuda, is designed to enhance defense force abilities in maritime security and disaster response training, American Forces Press Service reported. The Caribbean partner nations, Antigua and Barbuda, Bahamas, Belize, Dominica, Grenada, Guyana, Jamaica, St. Kitts and Nevis, St. Vincent and the Grenadines, Suriname, and Trinidad and Tobago, deployed maritime, national police, and coast guard units to take part in multiple training events. "Tradewinds is all about ensuring interoperability among Caribbean forces and advancing cooperation and coordination in various security and disaster-related scenarios," said Lt. Cmdr. Auden Nicholas, commanding officer of the Antigua Barbuda Defense Force's Coast Guard, and Antiguan co-director for Tradewinds 2014. The U.S. military plays an important maritime security role in the region and worked closely with Nicholas and his staff in setting up the Tradewinds exercise.

Entry to Latin America complicated by patchwork regulatory quilt
The regulatory picture for dietary supplements in Latin America is still very much a patchwork quilt, according to an expert who has studied the markets. But harmonization is on the horizon, and companies that are up to speed stand to reap the benefits.

The first Belizean Hurricane!
Sources from TPSL say The Houston Hurricanes FC signed `#Belize International player Evan Evimar Mariano a player that can play Midfield, winger or forward. Head Coach of the Hurricanes Coach Brendan Keyes said the team is very excited about bringing Evan to HOuston Texas, United States, he will definitely bring another level of play to the already strong team. He said "I believe with Evan and three or four more quality players we are bringing in we can challenge for the title this year. He brings the experience of playing at International level to the team, he has speed and he is a danger to any defenders when running at them. I like his character, he is a pillar in his community back home and helps out with the kids whenever he can. We ideally would like Evan to stay with the Hurricanes for the whole season" said Coach Keyes but it will be hard to hold on to him when the big teams see what he's got. Player fact-file played in Gold Cup all games including against the USA and Honduras, has ten National caps, he is 26 years old has over 100 appearances in Premier league in Belize and played Vs the Houston Hurricanes recently for the Belmopan Bandits who are in the Champions League in Concacaf. The Hurricanes Fc welcome Evan Evan Mariano to the Canes family. Here is Evan in Action in Gold Cup Vs Honduras taking the shot.


from Sisters of Charity of Nazareth

Video: Belize Mission Trip (Spring 2014) - SFBC, 6min.
from Sunnyvale First Baptist Church

Video: San Pedro Water Sports Kayak and Jet Ski Adventure Belize, 3min.
A vacation in San Pedro, Ambergris Caye, Belize, is not a complete one without some adrenaline in your body. Yes, most vacationers tend to only want to relax and lay out on the beach working on their tan. But there are also those who seek adventure and a rush that they cannot find in their hometown.

Video: The History and Tranquil Serenity of Belize, 1.5min.
Presented by Belize Sotheby's International Realty. The history of Belize dates back thousands of years. The Mayan civilization spread into the area of Belize between 1500 BCE to CE 1200 and flourished until about CE 1200. Several major archaeological sites—notably Cahal Pech, Caracol, Lamanai, Lubaantunn, Altun Ha, and Xunantunich—reflect the advanced civilization and much denser population of that period. The first recorded European settlement was established by shipwrecked English seamen in 1638. Over the next 150 years, more English settlements were established. Subsequently, several constitutional changes were enacted to expand representative government. Full internal self-government under a ministerial system was granted in January 1964. The official name of the territory was changed from British Honduras to Belize in June 1973, and full independence was granted on September 21, 1981.

Video: Limbitless, 28min.
A documentary short about the prosthetic industry and Prosthetic Project Hope International, a non profit organization, who provides prosthetic and orthotic devices for the mobility challenged in Orange Walk, Belize.


Video: 2014 Belize International Film Festival, 3min.
The Belize International Film Festival is back for the 9th time, with its opening night gala scheduled for Thursday July 17 at Robert's Grove Resort in Placencia. They've got films from across the globe, including 5 from Belize. Organizer Suzette Zayden told us what to expect at this year's film festival. The Festival will begin on July 16th and ends on July 20th with a closing awards banquet. There will also be a number of seminars during this period.

Video: 21st Century Parenting - The Belize Context, 12min.
A video focusing on the skills and services required to help Belizeans become better parents. Produced for UNICEF Belize.

Video: Belize International Film Festival 2014 Trailer, 1min.
We hope you'll join us at the 2014 Belize International Film Festival! This year's festival selection is more exciting than ever before, with films from around the globe. See you at the movies! July 16 - 21, 2014 See the full line up at:

Video: Punta Gorda Slideshow, 9min.

Video: Bonner's Belize Trip Part 1 May 2014, 14min.
Niki & Terry's Belize Dive Trip

Video: Bonner's Belize Trip Part 2 May 2014, 13min.
Terry & Niki's Belize Dive Trip.

Video: Bonner's Belize Trip Part 3 May 2014, 8min.
Terry & Niki's Belize Dive Trip.

Video: Belize Ecotourism Trip 2014, 14min.
A documentary of the HEM214 Ecotourism class's service learning trip to Belize.

Video: Diving The Great Blue Hole, Belize., 12min.
Incredible, unique dive. The Blue Hole formed as a result of an ancient sink hole years ago. The stalactites found at 130' suggest they were formed before the sea level rose. Sharks looming in the shadows who come in for a closer look add an eerie feel to the amazing dive. Divemaster: Cardinal. Boat: Big Bird (Blackbird Caye Resort)

Video: Zeniah's Dance #2 Belize, 4min.
Miss San Pedro High School Pageant

Video: Abrar Fishing in Belize/San Pedro, Permit (fish) catch #3,3 min.
this is fish #3 (out of 6 total permit catch of the day)

Video: Fishing in Belize/San Pedro, Permit (fish) catch #5, 2min.
this is fish #5 (out of 6 total permit catch of the day)

June 5, 2014


Click for our Daily Tropical Weather Report.

Specials and Events

Last night's TV news on Channel 7, Channel 5 and CTV 3
Also with the most recent Open Your Eyes, and the Dickie Bradley Specials

The San Pedro Sun

Sheila Chi is Miss SPHS 2014-2015
The night of Saturday, May 31st was one of beauty, poise and elegance as four lovely young ladies competed to be the new beauty ambassador for San Pedro High School (SPHS) at the 2014-2015 Miss SPHS Pageant. The pageant started shortly after 8PM at the Angel Nuñez Auditorium with the singing of the National Anthem followed by the introduction of the three judges tasked to determine who would walk away with the crown. Judges were Councilor in charge of Community Beautification Carlos Barrientos, San Pedro AIDS Commission President Felix Ayuso and the face of Kubuli Beer in Belize, Jasmine Baiza. After the formalities, Master of Ceremonies Angel Nuñez invited the contestants, Ezra Jailene Jacobs, Erica Bodden, Sheila Chi and Marisha Jamel Thompson on to the stage. The crowd cheered for their favorite girls as they performed an opening dance and introduced themselves. It was a dynamic dance presentation to Daddy Yankee’s hit song “Limbo”. When the girls headed backstage to change, the San Pedro Dance Academy and the SPHS Band took over the entertainment.

Ambergris Today

Hurricane Season has Begun, Below Normal Activity Predicted for 2014
It’s that time of the year again when Belizeans hear over the radio the infamous jingle – “June to November, June to November”! We all know that this means its Hurricane Season and it is time to keep an eye out on the weather reports. This year meteorologists expect for the Atlantic hurricane season to be below-normal with roughly 10 named tropical storms, five hurricanes and two major hurricanes predicted for the Atlantic Basin this season. Forecasters believe that the onset of El Niño, a short-term phenomenon associated with above-normal water temperatures in the equatorial Pacific, may alter weather patterns across the globe. At some point this summer, El Niño will likely increase wind shear across portions of the Atlantic basin and thus suppress the development of tropical storms this season.

100 Eye-popping Trash Bins Distributed in San Pedro Town
The San Pedro Town Council is working arduously in keeping our lovely island clean. With hundreds of workers raking the beaches and sweeping the paved roads on a daily basis, the work is never done. Just this week, hundred plastic barrels have been purchased to be used as garbage bins that will be placed throughout the island. A hundred barrels have been brightly and colorfully painted and will be strategically placed throughout the island in order for people to use them wherever they are. According to Councilor Kenrick Brackett, an extra hundred barrels should be arriving soon, of which some will be distributed to schools and a set will be sold to the public. “We would like to ask the cooperation of the public to place their trash in the proper place, in trash bins,” stated Brackett. “They are painted very brightly for everyone to see and hope everyone makes good use of the garbage bins and not vandalize them. Let us all keep our island clean.”

Dorian’s Angels Visit Chaya Café at Zen Arcade
Dorian’s Angels have found an oasis in San Pedro, a place to get away from all the hustle and bustle of everyday life to relax. Zen Arcade is a new business in town where one can have a good time, rejuvenate in a fun, easy-going, uplifting and professional environment. At Zen Arcade you can enjoy from calming yoga classes to energetic dance classes at their Tree Top Studio, plus get pampered at the Beauty Bar, pretty up from head to toe or enjoy massages from professional masseuse, get some botox work done (aesthetics), acupuncture. Mothers rejoice because they even offer child care! Dorian’s Angels were in for a treat as Tara Darrall and Noele Sutherland McLain, owners of Zen Arcade invited them over for an afternoon of pampering and rejuvenation. Zen Arcade has a lot to offer and this week Dorian’s Angels brings you their experience at the Chaya Café!

Misc Belizean Sources

Belize, a lobster lover’s haven
Party like a “LOB-Star” - This year’s series of Lobster Fests to be celebrated along Belize’s Caribbean coast and cayes is set to become the biggest yet, with three main festivals taking up most of this month, according to our sources in Ambergris Caye, Caye Caulker and Placencia. The Lobster Fests have always been something people all over Belize look forward to, and as more and more travellers discover Belize, the seasonal parties have been growing from small local celebrations to major events. Originally held in the fishing village of San Pedro, Ambergris Caye to celebrate the opening of lobster season in June, the lobster fest would welcome in the first catches of the season and the long awaited return of income for many of the villages’ inhabitants or fishermen. Local musical groups would arrive and along with conspicuous consumption of seafood and drinks there would be dances and beachside barbeques.

Constitutional Rights Seminar
The Rotaract Club of San Ignacio brought Kevin Arthurs to the Cayo Welcome Center to do a seminar on the Belize constitution. Thanks, Rotaract! "The Rotaract Club San Ignacio invited Attorney Kevin Arthurs to San Ignacio in an attempt to educate Belizean citizens about human rights and the Belize Constitution. We had cupcakes, cheese dip, juice and brownies for sale in order to raise funds for future community service. It was a fun educational experience."

Walk for a Green Belize
The Department of the Environment, Belize Solid Waste Management Authority, and the Belize Audubon Society are having another Walk for a Green Belize Clean-up campaign. There will be 2 in Cayo this Saturday, with the 1st starting at 6:00am in front of the Uno station and the 2nd starting at 7:00am at the Guanacaste National Park. In related news the DoE is having an essay competition.. "Department of the Environment is hosting an Essay Competition which is open to the General Public! All you have to do is write an essay consisting of no more than 400 words and explain what the Environment means to you and what you can do to help mitigate the effects of climate change on your Environment! The competition starts today and ends on June 20, 2014 and your essay will become a newspaper article on two widely circulated newspapers! As your prize you will be rewarded with a $125 gift certificate!" more...

Corozal accountant swindles $23,875.00 BCY from Corozal business woman
n Tuesday June 3rd, 2014, 31 year old Grisel Botes, cosmetologist of Libertad Village, Corozal District reported to Corozal Police that that between April 3rd, 2014 and June 3rd, 2014, she had given monies amounting to $23,875.00 Bcy to a friend whom she knows for the past 10 years as Elroy Bastarachea of Patchakan Village Corozal District in exchange for pieces of lands on San Pedro Ambergris Caye Island, Belize District and in the Cayo District. He informed her that he was employed at the Lands Department. He had told her that within a month's time from the first payment, which was done on the April 3rd, 2014, the papers for the lands were going to be ready and up to date, she has not received papers for such pieces of lands. Initial investigation reveals that he is not working on any land papers and that he cannot give account of the monies he had received from her for which he had signed several vouchers for receiving different amount of monies. 32 year old Elroy Bastarachea, Accountant of Patchakan Village Corozal District is presently detained for the crime of obtaining property by deception. Corozal Police continues with its investigation.

Branding of Belizean products exported to international markets
A two-day workshop began today at the Radisson Fort George in Belize City. It focuses on branding the Belizean products that are exported to various markets around the world. Dubbed the Belize Export and Origin Consortia Workshop, the Caribbean Development Bank in partnership with the Belize Coalition of Service Providers has organized the initiative to assist service and product manufacturers and providers in sectors of tourism, agriculture and other goods to explore the possibility of exporting collectively. The idea is to see various organizations within a particular industry to share techniques and contacts in order to meet the demands, quality and standards of international markets. And so today, stakeholders gathered for a crash course addressing the benefits of grouping firms for export using the methodology of the United Nations Industrial Development Organization. The workshop is part of the United Kingdom’s development support initiative to CARICOM states.

Caribbean Export and EU Offers Grants to the Region’s Food Producers
The Caribbean Export Development Agency (Caribbean Export) officially announced the publication of the Special Call for Proposals – Food Safety for CARIFORUM agro- processing firms to receive financial assistance as part of the Regional Private Sector Development Programme (RPSDP) funded by the European Union under the 10th European Development Fund (EDF) on May 28, 2014. The Special Call for Proposals – Food Safety is a reimbursable grant funding facility specifically designed to provide financial assistance to legally registered agro processing firms within the CARIFORUM region who are exporting or have the potential to export their products to the European Union. It is a facility for firms looking for funding to support their capacity building to meet the food production standards of the European Union (EU) market. While the challenge also exists among the large enterprises in the Region, it is very prevalent among the small, medium and micro-sized enterprises (MSMEs). The allocation of this funding is hoped to ensure that goods of regional origin are produced under standard quality control conditions to meet the sanitary and regulatory requirements of the EU marketplace (such as HACCP, GAPs , GlobalGAP, ISO 14000, Fair Trade Certification , BRC, QF 1000, Primus GFS etc).

A Hand Up Belize Foundation donates laptop
orozal Community College says a big THANK YOU!! We would like to thank Mr. Jason Pearce and Ms. Victoria Quinn of "A Hand Up Belize Foundation" for the donation of a laptop to Corozal Community College last year. This laptop was assigned to the Communications department of our school. They have ever since been using it to integrate technology in the classroom. Thank You!

Belmopan Bandits in CONCACAF Group 7
The Belmopan Bandits were placed in group 7 at the CONCACAF Championship League drawing held in Miami last week. They are in the same group as Leon, Mexico and Isidro Metapan, El Salvador. They start playing on the 5th of August. Go Bandits! "Luis Pena got a great opportunity to take a picture beside the Concacaf Champions League trophy which is currently held by Champions Cruz Azul of Mexico. This is the coveted trophy that 24 clubs from Concacaf will battle for including the Belmopan Bandits starting the 5th August 2014."

Benque Marimba Academy at Festival of Arts
The Benque Marimba Academy represented Cayo at the launch of the 2014 Festival of Arts, which was held at Bird's Isle. The Angelus Press, one of the sponsors, got some good pictures of the event. The BMA has been everywhere lately, including SHJC's graduation, and Open Your Eyes. Great musicians!

Meluchis Wet and Wild Party
Meluchi's had their Wet and Wild Party this weekend, and Danny Chung was there to get some more great pictures. This weekend, they're having a graduation dance, and the No Fear DJ's, Mistah Geeh and the crew, will be mixing. In related news, the Raging Masters will be having an EDM/Dancehall Invasion, getting everyone ready for Tomorrow Universe, which is just over a month away.

Tumul K'in Center of Learning and Ak' Kutan Radio at Channel 5 "Open Your Eyes" Tv show in Belize City.
Although time is short, TKCL and Ak'Kutan Radio shared with Belize its wonderful work in Toledo. What it offers and plans for the future. Thanks to Channel 5, Ms. Marlene Cuellar, Happy Birthday Mr. William Neal and most of all the the great Ahau! (7 photos)

Channel 7

Yhony Rosado Turns Himself And Employees Into Police For Questioning
Last night on the news, we told you about Leon Gentle, the employee of Yhony Rosado who was charged for the coma-inducing assault on Vitalino Reyes Jr, the son of Rosdo's chief business rival, Vitalino Sr. But the police investigation doesn't end with that arrest. Police have been continuing their investigation, and according to Yhony Rosado, they're now disrupting his business, and harassing his entire staff. This afternoon, he and a number of his employees went into the Queen Street Police Station – that's after over a dozen of them were picked up this morning. This afternoon in front of the Queen Street Police station, Rosado told us why he's going to the police before they come for him: Yhony Rosado - Owner, "This is the very beauty about this country. The media put out a story and pressured the department to do their job, and the department is doing a hell of a job. The problem is why should I be coming for all my - if somebody or a group from BTL commit, should they lock up everybody? That's exactly what's happening, everybody, even for the ones who are not - I have to bring everybody. If I don't bring them, they will start to investigate them or I don't know, charge them." Geovannie Brackett - Plus TV "When did the call come to you? How were you notified to bring in your employees?" Yhony Rosado "Right at the tourism village, as the workers came in, they picked them up in truck."

Bias On The Bench? Bar Association Alleges Appearances Against Awich
There is discord in judicial circles after the Bar Association endorsed an unprecedented resolution, suggesting the appearance of bias in the timing of the appointment of a Justice of Appeal. The resolution was proposed at a Bar Association meeting on Monday – and it was agreed to by a consensus position. It speaks about the lead majority decision penned by Justice Samuel Awich for the BTL second acquisition, a pivotal constitutional case. That judgment was delivered on May 15th., the same day Awich's contract expired, and then, the resolution notes, on the 19th May, Prime Minister Dean Barrow wrote to the Leader of the Opposition advising him Justice Awich would be appointed as a Judge of the Court of Appeal until the age of retirement. The Bar resolution says, quote, "the Association is very concerned that the above sequence of events gives rise to a real likelihood of an appearance of bias which tends to undermine confidence in the independence of the Judiciary in Belize." End quote.

Three City High Schools Will Pool Resources
The rumored amalgamation of three Belize City High Schools has created quite a stir amongst teachers, students and parents at those three schools. And those rumours emerged because the Secondary School Unit from the Ministry of Education has been busy in consultations with stakeholders for the past five months. Thing is they never proposed amalgamation, but the rumor mill probably turned it into that, because there's no word, or precedent for the model they're trying to create, where all three schools would pool resources but retain their separate identities. We found out more at a marathon two hour press conference today in Belize City: Jules Vasquez Reporting Sadie Vernon, Maude Williams and Excelsior are open schools... meaning they accept all applicants, regardless of PSE grades, but they are also struggling schools... with a declining number of students: Dr. Neulin Villanueva - Researcher/Planner, Ministry of Education "Whereas in the rest of the Belize district the majority of schools have seen an increase in enrollment over the last 5 years, in these three schools there has been a decline" And while enrollment has dropped, failure and drop out rates have gone up: Sr. Mary Caritas-Lawrence, RSM - Secondary Supervision Unit, MOE "We found there was a common thread that ran through the three schools, that with the three schools there was a loss in population, there was a problem with dropouts, there was a problem with failure rate, there was a problem with curriculum."

High School Says Teachers Bad Judgment Caused Drowning
2 months ago, Anahi Zepeda and Egar Puck, both 4th Form students from Escuela Secundaria Technica Mexico, drowned on a class trip to the Cayo District. Today, after the completion of their internal inquiry, the school announced that the teachers who were in charge of the trip have been suspended. A release from the School Board of Management says, quote, "An intensive investigation was conducted, and the Board has unanimously agreed that the four teachers who accompanied the students erred in modifying the itinerary during the educational trip to Che Chem Ha Caves on 4th. April, 2014." The release continues to say that the Board has recommended that the teachers be suspended and fined in accordance with the rules governing the conduct and behaviour of the teachers. The statement closes by saying that all relevant materials to this matter has been forwarded to the Teaching Services Commission.

Danini Does PAHO Meeting, Causes Controversy
This morning at 9:00, Director of the Drug Inspectorate Danini Contreras showed up at the PAHO Office in Belize City for a meeting. Now, we know that a hailstorm of controversy has attended Contreras's ascension to that post – but a meeting at PAHO couldn't have been so unusual, right? After all, the meeting was to discuss PAHO's technical assistance for the setting of a Drug Inspectorate Unit and the establishment of a mini lab – which would seem to be within her area of responsibility. But, it's not that simple – indeed, these days with the Ministry of Health it never is. That's because our information says that PAHO's Dr. Alfonso Ayala first opened the communication about the meeting with Sharon Anderson, the Chief Pharmacist. He thought she was in charge of the proposed Drug Inspectorate unit – and, so, he communicated with her about the meeting. But then, he got the memo and the ministry informed him that Contreras was in charge – and he then ceased communication with Anderson and started communicating with Contreras – leading to her presence at today's meeting.

Cayo Cops Must Face ID Parade
We've confirmed with San Ignacio Police that investigators want to put 4 of their officers in an identification parade in an effort to move forward with their inquiry into who shot 19 year-old Elston Arnold. But the suspect cops seem to be dodging, and getting them together has proven difficult, our reports suggest. Inspector Reymundo Reyes told us this evening that a request has been made to the Director of Public Prosecutions to inform these officers of the intent to put them in the parade. That's where it's at tonight, and to ensure that there is no mishandling of the investigation, police are moving very cautiously. As to that issue with the pellets not being retrieved yet for ballistics testing, Reyes told us that he will be personally visiting the Western Regional Hospital to find out from the doctor who attended to Arnold where those pellets are. As we've told you, Arnold's family claims that he and several other men were heading home to Unitedville early last week Monday when they were stopped by a police mobile. One his cousins exchanged words with one of the 4 officers, and when Arnold attempted to walk away, one of the officers reportedly shot him in the back with a shotgun.

Minister Cautious About Suspect Baptist Teachers
Two weeks ago, we told you about the 2 teachers from Belmopan Baptist High School who are being investigated because they are accused of having inappropriate sexual relationships with their female students. This time the Ministry of Education is taking a back seat after being burned on previous occasions in other schools when it tried to intervene and go over the head of the schools Board. This time, the Minister explained, it's strictly hands off, and eyes-on: Hon. Patrick Faber - Minister of Education "The managing authority of the school is the decision makers when it comes to any kind of action that needs to be taken in that regard, but that due process must also take place. I know that the case is being tried - if you will - and that they are taking action to give due process to the people who are involved." Jules Vasquez "So, once due process is given, if these persons are found to have indeed exploited their students, is it the express wish of the Ministry of Education that these persons not be teaching again, and be stripped of their licenses?" Hon. Patrick Faber "Well, I don't know the circumstances. I don't know what they will find, and we cannot just go on our feeling if it cannot be proven and things are not there."

What Does Belize's Energy Future Look Like?
The request went out in October of last year and after 8 months of accepting offers, 20 bids were officially tendered for consideration. The interested companies were invited to send representatives to witness the PUC's announcement of the proposals which will be considered. 7News attended at BEL's headquarters today, and we asked Chairman John Avery about those bids which have come forward: John Avery - Chairman. PUC "Between the PUC, the Ministry, and BEL, we're conducting what we dub as RFPEG Belize 2013, that is a request for proposal for electricity generation. We started that process in October of last year, and now, we are at the stages where we are opening bids receive. We receive a total of 20 bids, to satisfy our request for 60 megawatts of firm capacity to be added to the system, and some 15 megawatts of renewable energy from intermittent sources, being solar. We received twenty bids, a couple for hydro projects, a couple for biomass projects, a few of them for thermal projects, burning gas or diesel or heavy fuel oil and of course the rest then were mainly for solar. The 60 megawatts is the total capacity we intend to add to the system, but that is over a period of about 10 years. Some of these projects take years to get off the ground. So, we're doing this thing ahead of time. We're not just looking at what we need immediately, but perhaps what will satisfy us for the next 10 or 15 years. So, we intend not to add all 60 megawatts at once. We intend to add them in increments of 20 megawatts in 2 or 3 year intervals. The fifteen megawatts for solar, we intend to start adding that immediately, starting off with perhaps eight or ten and then gradually going up to fifteen. But certainly the amount we ask for is intended to satisfy our needs for at least the next fifteen years. While we want to be self-sufficient, in term of energy generation we rely on Mexico for more than that. So the idea is not to rid ourselves of Mexico per se, but strictly to become more self-sufficient, get better prices but we still believe there is benefit and there is value in being inter-connected to Mexico."

Alleged Car Thief Jason Jeffries Says They Lied About Him
A week ago, we told you about Jason Jeffries who was charged for allegedly stealing a man's car, but apparently forgetting to take out his bicycle from the trunk. According to the owner, Carlos Aquino, he reportedly parked his car in front of his house at around midnight on Tuesday, and that he forgot to take out the key from the ignition He said that at about 5 a.m. he was awakened by the sound of his car starting and when he went outside he saw Jeffries behind the steering wheel. He said he pursued Jeffries as he drove off and caught up with him. He yanked Jeffries out of the car and went to make a report. Well, Jefferies visited 7News to clear his name, saying that the entire story that Aquino reported to police was one big lie. Today, he gave us his version of the events, in which he is a good Samaritan who chose to help the wrong person: Jason Jeffries - Claims Innocence "I saw this gentleman passed out in his vehicle. He was leaning on his steering wheel with the door open. I thought to myself that I should stop and help the man, see what was happening with him. The first thing that came to my mind was to leave him alone and go about my business. But, I thought about the lots of people getting robbed, car break-ins and taxi drivers getting killed. So, I decided to wake him up. That's what I did. I went to vehicle. I woke up the gentleman.

Cops and Pitbulls Clash On Cran
Tonight a family residing on Crann Street in Belize City is furious after police officers fired a shot at their dog in front of many young children. Just before 4 this afternoon, the search team stormed into the yard to conduct a search for drugs and ammunition. Inside the yard were 8 unleashed pitbulls. Family members say that the officers gave them no time to put away the dogs - before they barged in and started behaving inappropriately. "Well, the police - two vehicle came with an attitude. They know that we have an amount of pitbulls in the yard. The first word that he uttered, 'hold those mother effing dogs because he will shot them. My sister told him that we can't hold all the dogs because the owner isn't here. He said that he doesn't care just hold dogs with more bad words. We were trying to hold them, but we couldn't so we got a man to come and help us to try and tie the dogs. When the man was coming in, he was finding all kinds of fault on the man who had tools in his back pocket that he does farming with. So, he cursed the man and ordered him to put the tools on the table. He couldn't hold them all, and he insist to come and bring his dog in to search.

Minister Of Education Warns Unlicensed Teachers
At the top of tonight's news – we told you about the proposed resource sharing between three government managed city schools. A still unknown number of the 61 teachers at the three schools will get declared redundant and then become eligible for lifetime pension. The 19 trained teachers will probably get first option at keeping their jobs – but when only 19 of 61 teachers – about 30% - are trained – that helps to explain why the schools have high numbers of students who drop out or repeat. Of course, there are so many other factors that go into that….but teachers who don't have a background in pedagogy is surely a large part of it. And that's why today Education Minister Faber warned teachers who are not fully certified – to do so as soon as possible: Hon. Patrick Faber - Minister of Education "Because we've now made a decision in this ministry to say to all of those teachers who hold a provisional license in the classroom - I think the starting point where they were given those provisional licenses may have been 2011 - and you were told that within that 5-year period, you are to get your pedagogical or professional development, and there are many who have not. Even at this point now, where we are 3 years later, even if a teacher who is in that situation, now enrols for the start of this upcoming school year, that teacher might find himself/herself caught with the deadline, and we're saying that those teachers need to leave the teaching profession. It is not something that is pleasant.

Lessons Learned From Gang Resistance Education and Training
145 primary and high school students graduated today from the Gang Resistance Education and Training program. They join the other 5,000 who have passed through the course in the last 4 years. GREAT, as it is better known, is a 13-week program funded by the US Embassy in which the police department is trying teach kids important life skills and why they should avoid gang life. We stopped by today and got a chance to speak with a few of the kids who passed through the program, and here's what they told us: The 145 kids came from the Buttonwood Bay Nazarene Primary School, Trinity Methodist, and the Muslim Community College. This is just 1 of several graduations taking place this month.

Channel 5

4 cops in detention for shooting a youth in Unitedville
There is a development tonight in respect of a shooting in Unitedville, Cayo District in which a young man was injured when he was shot by police officers on patrol. [...]

Employees of Yhony Rosado rounded up by police
Belize City Police have detained five men in connection with the altercation which left twenty-three year old Vitalino Reyes Junior comatose for days at the Karl Heusner Memorial Hospital. That [...]

Ministry of Education explains merger of 3 Belize City high schools
The Ministry of Education this morning finally addressed reports of the proposed merger of the resources of three high schools in the south side of Belize City. MOE confirmed that [...]

B.N.T.U. Belize District President to ensure appropriate procedures are adhered to
Following this morning’s press conference, News Five spoke with Kathleen Flowers, president of the Belize District branch of the Belize National Teachers Union.  B.N.T.U., as the representative body of the [...]

The Bar Association’s resolution on reappointment of Justice Samuel Awich
The Bar Association Executive has said it does not support the reappointment of Justice Samuel Awich to the Court of Appeal. The objection of the executive now extends to the [...]

Suspect detained in attempted armed robbery in 8 Miles community
Police have detained one suspect following an attempted armed robbery at Mile eight on the George Price Highway. It happened at around one pm today at Del Cid’s Store. Three [...]

British national accused of unnatural sex with minor returns to court
This morning at Independence Magistrate’s Court, the prosecution was unable to provide disclosure in the trial of British national David Taylor. Taylor was arrested in 2012 based on complaints made [...]

Danini Contreras attends PAHO meeting…was Chief Pharmacist dumped?
New Director of the Drug Inspectorate Danini Contreras continues to make the news. The appointment of the daughter of Minister Erwin Contreras has created major controversy in the Ministry of [...]

General Manager Benefits/Branch Operation, Enna Gonzalez, terminated from S.S.B.
There is confirmation tonight that after close to thirty years of employment at the Social Security Board, Enna Gonzalez has been abruptly terminated. Gonzalez, who rose to the rank of [...]

Several persons arraigned for immigration offenses
The Belize Immigration Department has made another arrest in the alleged nationality scam in which a number of persons, mostly immigrants, have been caught using fake birth and nationality certificates. [...]

Primary school students graduate from Police Department’s GREAT Program
The GREAT program is now in its fourth year. About fifty students from various high schools are the most recent to successfully conclude the program which is carried out by [...]

20 companies bid to provide energy to the national grid
Local and international representatives of prospective energy suppliers converged on the conference room at Belize Electricity Limited today. The occasion, hosted by the Public Utilities Commission, was the formal opening [...]

Businessman creates energy from cohune
One company which submitted a bid today is Cohune Energy Limited. They plan to use the very abundant cohune to provide energy to the national grid. Today company representative Rudolph [...]

Golden performances of the Festival of Arts take center stage at the Bliss
The 2014 National Festival of Arts officially opened on Tuesday and will conclude on Friday. Schools from throughout the country are participating in the cultural extravaganza. Today, at the Bliss [...]

Garifuna Collective making raves in Europe
Still on cultural performances…on the international stage, the Garifuna Collective is currently on a tour of a number of European countries such as Germany, the Netherlands, Belgium, Switzerland, and Amsterdam. [...]


NEMO Monitors Roads At Corozal South East Area
Each year, villagers living in Corozal South East particularly those residing in Copper Bank, Chunox and Sarteneja, face the challenge of traveling on flooded roads that lead in and out of their village during the rainy season. With the continuous rains over the past days, reports are that the road leading to the Pueblo Nuevo Ferry is presently under several inches of water. According to Willard Levy, Coordinator for NEMO Corozal, it’s a situation that they, along with the officials of the Ministry of Works, are looking closely at. Willard Levy – NEMO Corozal “I have interviewed a few people that have been travelling from that area and they are telling me that it is starting to go under water and they are saying that is passable but in the short interim we may be facing problem on having difficulty to pass through that road so I am getting in touch with the ministry of works to address that concern and see what they have in mind to do some kind of preventative measures.”

NEMO and UNDP Conducts Assessment On Vulnerability Areas To Flooding
For the next six months Belizeans will be keeping a watchful eye on the weather monitoring Mother Natures every move. That’s because the Hurricane Season has been declared open. In order to alleviate flooding and other hurricane related problems, the United Nation Development Programme, UNDP and the Corozal National Emergency Management Organization, NEMO, recently conducted an assessment in vulnerable areas to flooding and wind impact for evacuation purposes. And the results were alarming. Willard Levy - Corozal NEMO “What we did this year, this was a UNDP project that was done and what we actually did was to move within the district and visit the most vulnerable communities to try to make an assessment of how vulnerable these areas in terms of flooding and also with the impact and although we only made a random check of approximately 24% of the community throughout the district it wasn’t showing a nice picture in terms to questions asked to people, homeowners of most vulnerable areas.”

Small Hive Beetles Found Close To Our Borders
The Agriculture Department continues to closely monitor the situation as it relates to the small hive beetles which are found dangerously close. They were located in neighboring Chetumal Quintana Roo. As a result, the department conducted a full and swift diagnostic test and there was no presence of the beetle in the country yet. Honey producers are also being encouraged to practice improved husbandry to minimize the risks to their apiaries. However, the objective is to keep the bug out of the country for as long as possible since its entry can result in the complete collapse of the small agriculture sector. Margarito Leiva, Extension Officer specialized in bee keeping within the Agriculture Department in Orange Walk, says they have detected the beetle in El Salvador and are therefore doubling their efforts. Margarito Leiva – Extension Officer “We have to take two approach now even from the north or from the south or the western border from both areas they can come in.” Dalila Ical – Reporter “So far is the situation still safe and you still putting in measures to keep it that way?” Margarito Leiva – Extension Officer “Yes, in fact we have instituted some traps in most of the colonies especially those that in the border areas so as to see when the small hive will come in but so far we have not found them.”

Weather Conditions Affects Honey Production
We have told you about the challenges faced by bee keepers in 2013 after rains destroyed much of their apiaries. At that time, officials at the Agriculture Department said they would take necessary and appropriate measures to see the recovery of the honey producers to what they were. Today, the news is not so good. Dalila Ical reports. Dalila Ical – Reporting The rains have begun and with it the concerns by bee keepers as they continue to struggle against the inconsistent weather. Last year, honey producers in the north lost close to fifty percent of their colonies. Efforts were made to rebuilding these but Extension Officer in the Agriculture Department, Margarito Leiva says they have not been too successful. Margarito Leiva – Extension Officer “We didn’t achieve what we actually wanted because the rainy season didn’t stop until late march so we had a very short dry season which is only April and then the rain started in May and so what we had is a very bad honey crop for this year and in fact I can tell you that for the northern district we only produce close to 28,000 pounds which is not even a quarter of what we did last year so the production was really bad.”

OWTC Addresses The Issue With Clogged Up Culverts
The unstable weather patterns have wreaked havoc in several sectors of the society and the list continues to grow in Orange Walk. The rains over the last 48 hours caused several areas within town to flood and the Orange Walk Town Council responded to the calls. However, there is one thing that was observed in many sections where water became stagnant. Public Relations Officer at Town Hall, German Novelo says garbage played a role in clogging drains. German Novelo – PR, OWTC “Most of the problems that we encountered wasn’t that the drains were clogged because of maintenance but because of garbage that really ran from probably the residents yards into the drainage and then eventually clogging the mouth of the culverts so what we really want to bring across to the residents of Orange Walk Town is that while we keep our garbage clean is how we keep our drainage clean as well, we also want to ask them to bag their garbage properly and to keep your dogs tied, we have done a dog eradication and we alleviated most of the dog issue but one of the biggest problem right now is that the garbage of residents yards run into the drains and hence clogging the culverts.” The problem is widespread says Novelo and urges residents to heed to the call and dispose of their garbage in a more efficient manner especially since the drainage system in town is good. The public is also warned that situations like these can cause health problems for children and adults.

Upgraded Charge Of Murder For The Death Of Giovanny Borland
Tonight, 24 four year old Joseph West is expected to face an upgraded charge of Murder for the death of 34 year old Giovanni Borland, who passed away on Friday due to the severe head injuries that he sustained on the night of May 11th. As we’ve reported, West is accused of attacking Giovanni Borland after 11:00pm at ‘Mil Amores’ bar in Libertad where both men got into an argument. And while their seems to be many conflicting reports from police and the media, Borland’s uncle, Carl Borland spoke on the sequence of events that night with our colleagues at 7News! Here is that insert… Carl Borland– Uncle of Deceased On the eleventh of May, I think approximately around eleven-thirty or thereabout, he was at a bar in Libertad socializing when he had a misunderstanding with about five members of a particular family—all of them are family members—of that said village. He was chased from the bar and he retreated and ran towards the house that he was staying and upon reaching in front of that, apparently he tripped and fell on his face. When he fell on his face, he was chopped from behind, back of the head. A very large chop wound that caused piece of his head to dislocate, to come off and his brains was exposed. He was assisted by some members of the village and was rushed to the Corozal Hospital and from there to the K.H.M.H.”

ESTM Suspends Four Teachers In Drowning Incident
Exactly two months ago on today’s date, two teenaged high school students of Escuela Secundaria Tecnica Mexico, fifteen year old Anahi Zepeda and sixteen year old Edgar Puck drowned in the Macal River. The forth formers were on a class trip to the Che Chem Ha Maya Ruin in Benque Viejo del Carmen and upon their return that Friday evening, the bus made an unscheduled stop near the low-lying bridge in San Ignacio. Reports say that Anahi, Edgar and other students were in the water when Anahi was swept away by the current. Edgar, who could not swim, went to her aid and they both drowned. Since then, an intensive investigation into the matter was launched by the Board of Management of Escuela Secundaria Tecnica Mexico and today the results of that investigation was released to the media. The release states and we quote “An intensive investigation was conducted, and the Board has unanimously agreed that the four teachers who accompanied the students erred in modifying the itinerary during the educational trip.” End of quote.

Heavy Rains Affects Onion Production
Onion producers in the north have not been having much success in the business since last year. As we have reported, farmers had received some seeds for their second planting to bridge the gap on losses sustained in 2013 due to rains. In this second round, farmers in the Orange Walk District planted a total of eight point five acres of onion but the crop was not as productive as farmers had hoped. Extension Officer working the productive area of Orange Walk, Leonardo Eck says the rains have once again affected the production. Leonardo Eck - Extension Officer “In the late planting we normally receive between 50 to 20,000 pounds per acre but still what happened is that the weather also affected this year also for the second planting and what we manage to get from the farmers is 5,500 pounds per acre which is low but what helped the farmers was actually the price that the farmers were getting was $45 per 50lbs. and that is the minimum up to $75 for a 50lbs. bag. It did help, the price actually it did help them but production wise is not that we failed but due to Mother Nature again the production was low.”

Public Service Day Culminates In Orange Walk Town
Public Service Information Day is held countrywide, and today it culminated in Orange Walk Town. The officers from government departments in all sectors made an appearance today at the La Inmaculada Credit Union Parking lot where the event was held. We took a walk through the open day and here is a look at what transpired. Dalila Ical – Reporting Public service Information Day has evolved from the first time it was held in 2006. Minister of Public Service and Elections and Boundaries Charles Gibson says there have been many achievements within this sector and the event serves three important purposes. Charles Gibson - Minister of Public Service and Elections and Boundaries “First, for ministries and departments to have an opportunity to showcase the work that they are doing, to show the public what services are being offered and then of course secondly for the public officers themselves to get an opportunity to network and to build partnerships and I am one who feels very strongly in an environment like this is a very small environment you can go around and meet your fellow public officers so rather than been knowing someone else like Mr. Chan or Mr. Brown or Mr. Gibson you probably get to know that person by first name so if you need to get that service you can pick up that phone and you are calling your colleague or even your friend to get something done and so we are hoping that this activity also helps to build network and to build partnerships and then thirdly for me which I think it is so important if for the public officer for the people who are manning the booths to get some feedback from the public as to what services that are needed or what services can be improved.”

Puck And Tuz Family Submits Legal Action Letters To ESTM
And While the Board of Management is recommending that the four teachers who quote unquote “erred in modifying the itinerary during the educational trip to Che Chem Ha Maya Ruin in Benque Viejo Del Carmen, be suspended without pay, not everyone is in agreement with the outcome of the investigation. This past Sunday Students of Escuela Secundaria Tecnica Mexico celebrated their annual Graduation Ceremonies. Fifteen year old Anahi Zepeda and sixteen year old Edgar Puck were scheduled to be among the graduating class of 2014, but their untimely death snatched that proud moment from them and their loved ones. While the family of both of the deceased continues to deal with the fact that their loved is not among them anymore, the family of 18 year old Roggery Tuz, who also sustained injuries while swimming in the Macal River, is facing the rapid growing doctor bills.


Synergy Among Three Schools Announced by Education Ministry
Changes for third form students from three secondary schools in Belize City are on the horizon as members and administrators of the Ministry of Education presented some findings and solutions that they are preparing to carry out for the upcoming school year beginning August 2014. These changes came about following a process that began January this year with the initiation of an assessment of nine secondary schools.…while the assessments for six of the nine schools are still incomplete; three of the high schools whose assessments were concluded are now embarking on a project that will see the synergy of some classes particularly for third form students of Maud Williams, Excelsior and Sadie Vernon High Schools. Brenda Armstrong, who has been on the team from the onset, explained the progress that has been made since the process began. BRENDA ARMSTRONG “We started on January 22 of this year; that was the first time that the three administrators got together and the computer lab upstairs of Sadie Vernon was our think tank. That’s when we shared the schools’ self-assessment findings and the principals got a chance to say what the areas were that they would like to address out of their findings. We then met with the Boards of the three high schools, the entire board, not just the Board Chairs and received and got a chance to answer all the questions that they would raise as well.

PAHO and New Drug Inspectorate Unit Meet on Strengthening Unit
This morning, just before nine o’clock, the newly appointed Director of the Drug Inspectorate, Danini Contreras and Drug Inspector, Mariata Enriquez, walked into the PAHO office on Coney drive to meet with PAHO representatives. Contreras, who has been in the middle of contentions between the Ministry of Health and the Pharmacists Association of Belize over her appointment, is the daughter of Minister Erwin Contreras. Before the meeting, rumors circulating suggested that the meeting would be concerns PAHO had over the Drug Inspectorate Unit and the importation of pharmaceuticals. We were also told that the Chief Pharmacist, Sharon Anderson was blocked from forming part of the meeting. We contacted PAHO representative in Belize, Dr. Carlos Ayala and he told us that he is unable to comment on the meeting. We got a comment from the Ministry of Health and we were told that the meeting was an information gathering session with focus of upgrading and strengthening the drug inspectorate unit.

Vitalino Jr Remains in Coma; Gentle Out on Bail
23-year-old Vitalino Reyes Junior remains hospitalized in a critical condition and the man accused of putting him there appeared in court yesterday. Thirty year old Leon Gentle, an employee of Cave was charged with dangerous harm and use of deadly means of harm when he appeared before Senior Magistrate Sharon Fraser. Gentle’s attorney, Audrey Shepherd, said he was beaten by the police while he was in custody and he was forced to participate in an identification parade. Gentle said that a police officer punched him on his jaw while another one choked him. He said that he was also stamped on his chest by a police officer. The incident occurred around 4:30 p.m. on May 29 at Long Island Bar on Coney Drive. Twenty-one year old Yhony Vega, a tour guide who was with the victim, Vitalino Reyes Jr, reported to the police that they were sitting at the bar drinking when Yhony Rosado, the owner of Cave, and some of his employees walked in.

Charge Against West Upgraded to Murder
24-year-old Joseph West of Libertad Village has been charged with murder. As we reported on Monday, the charges were expected to be upgraded to murder after the victim, Giovanni Borland died. Borland received machete wounds to the head during a fight in Libertad Village on May 11. Borland was seriously injured and taken to the Corozal hospital for medical treatment and later transferred to the Karl Heusner Memorial Hospital where he passed away on Friday, May 30.

Accountant Accused of Obtaining Property by Deception
An accountant of Patchakan Village in the Corozal District is being detained by police in that municipality pending a charge of obtaining property by deception. The complainant, 31-yer-old Grisel Botes of Libertad Village told Police that between April 3 and June 3 she handed over almost 24 thousand dollars to the man she knows for the past ten years in exchange for parcels of land in San Pedro, Ambergris Caye; the Belize and Cayo Districts. According to Botes, the man told her he was employed at the Lands Department and within a month of the first payment she would receive the land papers, which has not occurred. As a result of the man being unable to give account of the monies he had received, he was detained.

Bad Weather For Sugar Industry
The start of the rainy season has cane farmers concerned. We hear more in this report from Arturo Cantun. ARTURO CANTUN REPORTING “The sky over Orange Walk and Corozal was still overcast this morning and the Belize Met Office is forecasting more rain up until the weekend. This does not favor the hundreds of cane farmers who still have a total of two hundred and forty thousand ton of sugar cane left in the fields. The weekend rains was surely a major impact on the industry that was running smoothly up until its eighteenth week.” ALFREDO ORTEGA Vice Chairman Belize Sugar Cane Farmers Association “Yes it has negative impact in regards to the harvesting of our cane at this point in time and we just hope that God blesses us in stopping a little bit of the rain, so that the many farmers that has not delivered anything as yet can have that opportunity to deliver part of the material they have for this crop. We are asking the group leaders to give that opportunity to the farmers that they have under their care, to take out a percentage of their cane so that they can give opportunity to all the members they have under their care to deliver a certain percentage of their cane; so, whatsoever will stay in the field, wouldn’t stay in the burden of a little few farmers but rather it can be spread out upon most, if not all farmers so that the weight don’t be felt in one farmer and all of us bear the burden of that amount of percentage of cane that cannot be delivered to the mill.”

Education Ministry Looks at Amalgamation of Schools in Northern Belize
The 2013 – 2014 school year is winding down and as students get ready for the summer break, the Ministry of Education is getting ready for the upcoming year. According to Minister of Education Patrick Faber, there has been discussion of amalgamating certain primary schools across the country in order for the school system to be more efficient. Two of the schools that are being considered to be merged are San Pablo Roman Catholic and San Pablo Community School in the Orange Walk district. Faber believes the amalgamation of these two schools should not be problematic. HON. PATRICK FABER Minister of Education, Youth and Sports “We had talked about an amalgamation between San Pablo R.C and San Pablo Community. I think that is as far as we actually had gone and that amalgamation, in my opinion, is not going to problematic particularly because as the government, we are not going to resist, so to speak, giving it to the Roman Catholic management when the two schools are brought together and so, I don’t see that as a problematic kind of amalgamation.

Gang Resistance Training Graduates 145
Today 145 students from three primary schools graduated from the Gang Resistance Education and Training, GREAT, Program. According to both the Acting Commander for Community Policing, Inspector Dehanne Augustine and Ministry of Education representative, the GREAT Program has positively impacted families across the country. INSPECTOR DEHANNE AUGUSTINE Acting Commander for Community Policing Belize Police Department “The program has four components. It has the elementary component which is from standard one to standard three. We have the middle component, which is from standard four and we pushed it as far as 1st form. We also have the summer component, which is where we do our summer program and we have the GREAT family component and so far Belize hasn’t done the GREAT family’s component due to finance restraint. We’re also looking at what the school gains; what do families gain? What does the community gain? All these people gain a productive citizen because this program teaches students at the end of the day, it’s not about fighting and it’s not about violence; it’s about letting us see how we can adjust the situation. It teaches them life skills, it teaches them goals, because one of the things that we have right now with our country is that some of the children have no idea of what they want to be and this program it teaches them goals, it teaches them to do decision making, anger management.”

End of Week Meeting Set to Talk Bagasse
BSI /ASR and Sugar Cane Farmers met on March 28 to discuss payment for bagasse. Since then there has not been any other discussion on the matter; that is until this Friday June 6, when both parties along with the Sugar Industry Control Board, acting as mediator, should resume talks. We asked Alfredo Ortega for an update on the discussion as they get ready to meet. ALFRED ORTEGA Vice Chairman Belize Sugar Cane Farmers Association “Well we are looking forward to a just payment for our cane. It is true that BSI had jumped from a no to 0.51 cents but we are seeing that there is room for improvement in that and we had a letter from them last week which they said that they remained with 0.51 cents on which they have placed before. They also mentioned that they want to have a meeting on Friday to see how best we can find methods or a solution to the situation. Yes that is what we are getting from the expert that our price should be in the vicinity of 4 dollars, as a base and that is why we ask from them 10 dollars so that we can meet at a certain point that will be just for the farmers. What we are asking for is for a just payment on the use of bagasse and asking nothing more than that. What we want is something just for the cane produced by the farmers.”

Twenty Bids Submitted for Electricity Generation
This morning, the Public Utilities Commission and the Ministry of Energy, Science and Technology and Public Utilities (MESTPU) presented bids submitted for electricity Generation. Interested persons were asked to submit proposals to establish electricity generation that will be connected to the National Electricity System of Belize in order to satisfy public demand for electricity services within the country for the next 15 years. We spoke to the Chairman of the PUC, John Avery about the bids and Rudolph Castillo about his cohune idea. JOHN AVERY Chairman Public Utilities Commission “As you may be aware right now between the PUC, the Ministry and BEL, we’re conducting what we dub as RFPG Belize 2013 that is a request for proposal for electricity generation. So we started that process in October of last year and now we’re at the stage of where we are opening bids received. We received a total 20 bids to satisfy our request for 60 megawatts of firm capacity to be added to the system and 15 megawatts of renewable energy from intermittent sources, being solar and wind. So we received 20 bids; a couple for hydro projects, a couple for bio-mass projects, a few of them for thermal projects, which is burning gas, diesel or heavy fueled oil and then the rest was mostly for solar.


Secret Training Meeting Held for Danini Contreras
This morning there was a training for employees of the Ministry of Health, hosted by the Pan American Health Organization (PAHO) at their Coney Drive headquarters. The special guest was controversially-appointed Inspector of the Drug Inspectorate Danini Contreras, who remains at her post despite repeated efforts by the Pharmacy...

Police Officers Detained for Shooting of 19 Year Old
On Monday, May 26th, 19 year old Elston Arnold, resident of Unitedville, Cayo, was reportedly shot in the back by police for no apparent reason. 19 year old Elston has since been recovering from a surgery to remove the pellet from his back. Cayo Police launched an internal investigation,...

City High Schools to Work Together to Deliver Content
It has been bubbling under the surface for a while, but it is now official: at the start of the 2014-2015 school year, three Southside Belize City high schools – Sadie Vernon Technical High School, Maud Williams High School and Excelsior High School - are entering a unique partnership to...

Teachers to be Shuffled, some may lose their jobs
There were concerns raised about whether teachers would be fired as a result of the plan. The response from the pannel to this question showed just how uncertain the job security of several of the teachers really is. According to Sister Caritas Lawrence there remain some decisions to be...

Ministry of Education Waits for Belmopan School’s Decision on Teachers
We have told you about developments here in Belmopan where one teacher is accused of having sexual intercourse with a student at Belmopan Comprehensive School. That teacher, Michael Guzman, now faces criminal charges as the student’s educational life has been cut short. Minister of Education Patrick Faber is not...

GREAT Program Graduates 145 Students
While the Belize Police Department’s main task is to fight crime and criminals, it has increasingly come to recognize that crime is a societal and generational problem. This year’s mischievous and rude little boys and girls often grow up, if they survive, into disillusioned and desperate young men and...

Mangrove Planting in Placencia
33 year old Adrian Vernon, the program director for PCSD (Placencia Citizens for Sustainable Development) died in the early weeks of February 2014. Vernon was described by his colleagues as a “passionate environmentalist” committed to protecting Belize’s resources, particularly those of the Placencia Lagoon, and an all around the...

Caye Caulker Chronicles

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7 players from Caye Caulker to represent Belize in Tampa dart tournament
Seven professional darts players from Team Caye Caulker will be representing Belize at the 20th Caribbean Cup dart tournament in Tampa, Florida in July. The tournament is set to run from July 12 – 20, 2014. Caye Caulker players chosen to represent Belize at the tournament are Marie Osman, Emerita Marin, Elias Castillo, Wilbur Perez, Jorge Requena, Sr., Valentino Marin, and Cecilia Joseph. We wish Team Belize and especially the Caye Caulker players the best of luck!

Belize Association of Houston fundraises for Ocean Academy
The Belize Association of Houston and Belize Freight have teamed up with Ocean Academy to help raise funds for their Summer 2014 school supplies drive. Please contact the Belize Association of Houston if you would like to help. Contact information is provided on the flyer below.

Patrick Jones

Will You Run for the End of the World Marathon?
The End of the World Marathon is a 26.2 mile marathon that is held every year on the Placencia Peninsula. The first marathon was held in December 2012 to commemorate the end of the 13th Baktun in the Maya Long Count Calendar which was a significant time to the Maya people since it was the end of a cycle and the beginning of a new one. Because many people thought that the world would end on that day (December 21th 2012) and it didn’t, the organizers of the marathon decided to retain the name “The End of the World Marathon” in honor of the distinguished writer Aldous Huxley who wrote in 1934, “If the world had any ends, British Honduras (now Belize) would certainly be one of them.” The End of the World Marathon is now held every year since 2012 and this year, the competition is scheduled for December 7, 2014 and will begin at the football field at the bottom of the Placencia Peninsula in Placencia Village and will pass through Seine Bight Village and Maya Beach, then return and end in Placencia Village.

GREAT program graduates 145 students
The Belize Police Department’s main task is to fight crime and criminals, but it has increasingly come to recognize that crime is a societal and generational problem. For the past four years it has instituted a program called GREAT, for Gang Resistance Education and Training, that addresses the often difficult family life and personal issues affecting today’s youth, from as young as Standard I. Today the Belize City cohort of three schools – Buttonwood Bay Nazarene, Trinity Methodist and Muslim Community Primary – graduated 145 students from the program. So is GREAT living up to its acronym? P.C. Morris Martinez says that for thirteen weeks – after themselves being trained – officers taught conflict resolution, anger management, and anti-drugs and gangs messages to very attentive classes.

City high schools to work together to deliver content
It is now official: at the start of the 2014-2015 school year, three Southside Belize City high schools – Sadie Vernon Technical High School, Maud Williams High School and Excelsior High School - are entering a unique partnership to deliver quality education to over 500 students between them. It was born out of a need to address crippling issues at each school, including dropout and repetition rates that combined were more than double the national average. Retired Wesley College principal Brenda Armstrong is a member of the transition team directing the development of this educational triumvirate, and she explained at a press conference today that the school will remain separate administratively, but pool their resources together in certain cases, so that the students can learn together from the best of the educators on staff.

MOE waits on Belmopan school’s decision on teachers
A Belmopan teacher has been charged with having sexual intercourse with a student at Belmopan Comprehensive School. That teacher, Michael Guzman, now faces criminal charges as the student’s educational life has been cut short. Minister of Education Patrick Faber is not possessed of the actual details, and says he does not need them, because the decision on how to discipline Guzman and other culprits falls to the school’s board. Faber noted that while the Ministry has representatives on the school board, there are others involved and they must collectively come to a decision. But he also made it clear that the Ministry will not condone illicit behavior in schools and repeated his plea for those with important information to step forward.

PUC to review bids for more electricity
The Public Utilities Commission (PUC), along with the Ministry of Energy, Science, Technology and Public Utilities has completed its Request for Proposals for Energy Generation, 2013. It asked for firms to provide up to 60 megawatts of firm capacity electricity and 15 megawatts of energy from renewable sources such as solar, wind and biomass. A total of 20 bids were submitted and they were formally opened today at the BEL office. But the hard work now begins. PUC Chairman John Avery says they must work with an eye to Belize’s energy future, as the projects will be implemented over the next fifteen years, beginning with 15 megawatts due next year.

Case of committing an unnatural crime against David Taylor continues
The attorney representing David Taylor, the man accused of having sex with a teenage old boy in Placencia a couple of years ago, is asking the Magistrate’s Court to throw out the case. Taylor, a British national appeared in the Independence Magistrate’s Court today; but the prosecution was not in a position to present full disclosure. That prompted defence attorney Ellis Arnold to ask the Magistrate to strike out the case against Taylor due to the length of time which has passed since he was arrested and charged and still the prosecution is unable to provide disclosure. Taylor was arrested in 2012 on two counts of aggravated assault of an indecent nature and a single count of committing an unnatural act. Magistrate de Moya chose instead to grant one final adjournment and Taylor, who has been out on bail since January of 2014, is to return to court in August.


Eating and drinking my way around San Pedro
It was time to stop being sidetracked by eating food and get to my other main errand aside from trying to track down Brazilian money – groceries. I headed to the lagoon side and did not see anything that caught my eye at the Tuesday produce stands. I was ok with that because I was walking and I knew pickings would be slim as it was already afternoon, the best selection is early morning around 7:00am. you can see pictures of what shopping is like in my post: A trip to the Tuesday morning produce market and Yancey de Veer singing Lyin’ Mayans. Note: Sometimes people are out selling fruits and vegetables n that area other days of the week but there is no guarantee. Next stop onto Super Buy, within 3 minutes of being in te store I was wishing I had bought more of the things I was not finding today the last last time I had shopped there – a common occurrence here. Thankfully it was not long before I was able to find one item I was looking for, roasted seaweed. Much to my dismay the stock had gone down from several rows to 6 packages, I decided to buy half after checking the expiry date and seeing it was the end of June 2014.

Belize hosts US Navy Ship: Anchors Aweigh!
Belize’s deep water Port of Big Creek down in the Toledo District hosts US Navy Ship; has seen a lot of maritime activity over the years, from the large Maya seagoing canoes that plied the coastal trade routes, to Spanish Galleons, the odd pirate (or to be more polite, privateer or buccaneer) ship, WWII vessels and, as the port grew, larger container ships to carry sugar and other produce. But the USNS Spearhead still managed to turn heads when it arrived in Big Creek the first week of June this year, with some locals wondering what it’s all about. Don’t worry, this nautical wonder is here to use its powers for good, marking the start of the US “Southern Partnership Program” in Belize, which is a US Naval deployment working with Belizean counterparts in port security, technical and medical support, patrol operations, operational risk management and other areas.

“A Bird In The Hand” in San Pedro, Ambergris Caye, Belize.
In an edition or so ago I mentioned that Rose and I were approaching our second anniversary of residing on Ambergris Caye. Well the big day arrived last Saturday and we celebrated it in style with a bottle of champagne that I’d set aside for the occasion. You’re probably wondering why we didn’t ‘pop the cork’ on the first anniversary. Logical thought. But we decided that the second anniversary would have more significance for us: We thought that by then the build of our house would be completed and we would be living it in. It was and we are. We assumed that by then we would have gained acceptance in to the Qualified Retirement Programme. We did. We also reckoned that we would have got our Belize Drivers Licences and bought our own golf cart (and dispensing with the costly rental fee in the process). We did and we have.

Bigabite is the New Restaurant in San Ignacio Town
Bigabite is a sweet little restaurant in San Ignacio Town that just opened its doors to the public on Sunday. The restaurant is located up the hill from the San Ignacio & Santa Elena Town Board and is adjacent to Dr Sanchez Office. The restaurant is a great place to grab a quick lunch and the menu consists of a variety of burgers, chicken wings, pulled pork and fries.They also have combo meals with a variety of burgers, fries and drinks for $10 – 16. Check out their Facebook Page for more information.

11 Photos that will convince you to visit Victoria House Resort in Ambergris Caye
Victoria House is an award winning and upscale resort in Ambergris Caye that is considered one of the top luxury resorts in Belize. The romantic resort is literally one mile from the world’s second largest barrier reef and the term “Barefoot elegance” is the self-described vibe of this plantation-style 42-room hotel. Its sleeping quarters include thatch-roof casitas, suites, and villa which are chic with cream-on-white palettes accented with blonde Belizean-wood dressers, bamboo four-poster beds, rich mahogany trim, and framed prints of tropical plants. Their profile on Travel & Leisure website reads: Sea views abound, and even the thatch-roof casitas, which are set further back in the gardens, come with a semi-covered deck from which the [turquoise Caribbean] sea can be seen. Because the 20-odd buildings fan out around a central lawn, with two pools on opposite ends of the grounds, Victoria House never feels full, even when it’s at capacity; there’s always an empty poolside lounge chair, plenty of room on the powder-white beach, and an unharried, always-smiling staff. There’s also an on-site dive shop if the urge to scuba or snorkel strikes.

International Sources

Belize, Guatemala, Honduras and Mexico to Manage Mesoamerican Reef With GEF Support
The Global Environmental Facility (GEF) Council Meeting approved a US$10 million grant for the ‘Integrated Transboundary Ridges-to-Reef Management of the Mesoamerican Reef (MAR2R)' project. The project aims to ensure the reef's ecological integrity by scaling up a ridge to reef management approach and enhancing regional collaboration for its management. The Mesoamerican Reef, which is found along the Caribbean coasts of Belize, Guatemala, Honduras and Mexico, is the largest transboundary reef in the world and is a highly biodiverse coastal-marine ecosystem, according to the GEF. The region also contains 400 hydrological systems and watersheds. The project includes four main components. First, it will strengthen regional governance by harmonizing national legislation and developing regional strategies to address invasive lion fish, among other activities. Second, it will address integrated water resources management (IWRM), including integrated management of hydrological systems and the establishment of public-private mechanisms for integrated watershed management. Third, the project will strengthen national capacities for marine spatial planning and integrated coastal management. Finally, the project is expected to conduct monitoring and learning exercises to share lessons learned with the global GEF International Waters community.

White House Chief of Staff to Speak at Radio & TV Dinner
Hopefully this thing won’t be a snoozefest. But let’s give him the benefit of the doubt that he can give a good dinner speech. Some fun facts about him: According to The Daily Beast he has been known to be “ornery” and “caustic” with journalists, he taught high school in Belize, he’s one of 11 kids, and he was born in Stillwater, Minn. He was also in the monitoring room when the Navy SEALS were taking out Osama Bin Laden. The other thing? He really bizarrely looks just like TV’s Herman Munster. The Mirror has learned that McDonough has been asked to include jokes as well as substance. So not just roasting the press, as has been the norm, but some real meaty morsels, too.

Dallas to host group stage of Central American Cup 2014 at historic Cotton Bowl
The Central American Football Union (UNCAF) today announced that the Cotton Bowl will be among the venues for the Central American Cup USA 2014, when Dallas, TX plays host to Central America’s national soccer teams on Sunday, September 7. The Central American Cup is the region’s national team championship, which also serves as a qualifying competition for the CONCACAF Gold Cup and, on this occasion, the Centennial Cup America 2016. The historic Cotton Bowl served as a venue for the 1994 FIFA World Cup as well as the CONCACAF Gold Cup in 1993. The stadium was once home to the Dallas Burn of Major League Soccer, as well as numerous international soccer events. UNCAF’s seven member associations – Belize, Costa Rica, El Salvador, Guatemala, Honduras, Nicaragua and Panama – will dispute the 13th edition of the Central American Cup in cities across the United States from September 3-13, 2014.

Adventure By Day, Luxury By Night In Belize
The Central American destination continues to lure adventurous travelers seeking sophisticatio. Belize is known for its beautiful coastline, bordered by the world’s second-largest barrier reef (and its famous Blue Hole), but while diving and relaxing along its white sand beaches make for an easy escape from workaday worries, this welcoming, English-friendly country has something more exciting that can cement a new couple’s bond: pyramids. Travel across the Mopan River on a hand-cranked chain ferry to the 1,400-year old Xunantunich pyramid, one of the region’s most legendary and popular archaeological sites. Or make time to join an outdoor yoga class at the Mayan ruins before climbing above the tree canopy for stunning views from the top. Then, take a horseback ride along the banks of the Mopan and head into the small town of San Ignacio for handcrafts and local fare, such as the cheesy chalupas. Luckily, after so much exertion, luxury accommodation awaits, so you can wash it all away and rest up for another day of exploits.


Video: Snorkeling in Belize, 8min.
An excursion from the Royal Caribbean Cruise ship to Rendezvous Caye. This was a poorly operated excursion, cramming too many snorkelers into too little space and too little time. Not enough freedom to explore. Only 30 minutes of snorkeling was permitted beyond the sandy area. But we enjoyed what we could. This was a very enjoyable snorkeling experience, but just could have been so much better if they would have let us have some freedom.

Video: Our Cruise to Mexico, Belize and Honduras!, 8min.

Video: Ryan's trip to belize, 6min.

Video: Belize 2K14, 6min.
This is what happens when you have an opportunity to take a travel course to Belize. Thank you Mom and Dad.

Video: blue hole Belize 130 feet, 3min.
Belize May 2014 The Blue Hole

Video: Belize It or Not, 5min.
Very nice travel video of Ambergris Caye and and a bit from the mainland....

Video: Caracol from Above - DJI Phantom - Gopro 3 +, 6min.
Aerial footage of Caracol using a quadcopter. Caracol is majestic. "Caracol from above what could be better, shot from the dji phantom with a gopro 3 plus on a gimbal .. just incredible .. had a great time was pretty much the only time it didn't blow a gale"

Video: Snorkeling - Shark & Ray Alley, Caye Caulker, Belize., 22min.
Snorkeling with sting ray, shark in Shark & Ray Alley, Caye Caulker, Belize.

Video: Driving in BELIZE CITY, 4min.

Video: day 4 Belize pt1, 10min.
Belize City

Video: day 4 Belize pt2, 13min.
Off the cruise ship and into Belize City

Video: Guatemala & Belize 2014, 7min.

Video: Emmc school singing at Bliss Center in Belize City, 3min.

Video: Diving The Great Blue Hole, Belize, 14min.

Video: Belize Jungle Lodge - Caves Branch, 6min.
Ian Anderson's Caves Branch is located in the heart of the jungle which are also home to many jungle creatures. Check out this video to see if we are just what you are looking for.

Video: Belize 2013, 3min.
San Pedro, Half Moon Caye, Caye Caulker, Dangriga, Hopkins, Placencia Belize 2013

Video: The Lodge at Big Falls, Southern Belize, 54min.
The Lodge at Big Falls is situated on the banks of the Rio Grande river in Belize's unspoiled southern Toledo District. With a mile of river-front and views of the Maya Mountains in the distance, the Lodge is a highlight for any adventurer looking to experience a lesser-traveled region of Belize. Our excellent on-site restaurant serves gourmet food - local specialties complemented with Asian influences - and our full bar pours local favorites, classic cocktails, beer and wine. We are a licensed tour operator offering a variety of tours and activities within the district, including a mix of natural history (birds, butterflies, and wildlife), adventure (kayaking, snorkeling, caving and hiking) and cultural interactions with our Toledo residents (musicians, dancers, Maya artisans).

Video: Belize (British Honduras) Old Postcards, 7min.

Video: Leaf Cutter Ants - Belize, 1/2min.
Leaf cutter ants in action

June 4, 2014


Click for our Daily Tropical Weather Report.

Specials and Events

Last night's TV news on Channel 7, Channel 5 and CTV 3
Also with the most recent Open Your Eyes, and the Dickie Bradley Specials

The San Pedro Sun

CONCACAF Championship League draw lands Belize’s Belmopan Bandits against Leon and Isidro Metapan
The Belmopan Bandits of Belize have been drawn in Group Seven along with Leon of Mexico and Isidro Metapan of El Salvador for the 2014/2015 Confederation of North, Central American and Caribbean Association Football (CONCACAF) Championship League (CCL). The CCL is the qualifying competition on the road to the 2015 FIFA Club World Cup. The drawing took place on Wednesday May 28th at the InterContinental at Doral, Miami, USA. The 24 qualified clubs set to contest the seventh edition of the continental championship were sorted into eight groups of three. Current holder of the title Cruz Azul of Mexico, which has captured a record six CONCACAF club titles, headlines Group 6. The Mexico City-based team will meet 2013/14 semifinalist Alajuelense of Costa Rica and Chorrillo FC of Panama. After winning two straight Liga MX Championships, Leon of Mexico will make its tournament debut, squaring off against Group 7 opponents Isidro Metapan of El Salvador and first timer Belmopan Bandits of Belize.

Footprints for Peace garner Mayor Danny support who joins COP
Mayor of San Pedro Town, Daniel “Danny” Guerrero has joined the Citizen on Patrol (COP) program in which he has pledged to volunteer eight hours of his time weekly. His decision was made on Wednesday May 28th, during a public meeting in which the National Coordinator of the COP program, Retired Senior Superintendent of Police Rudolph Orio, was present to galvanize support for the program on the island. Orio was on the island on the invitation of the Footprints for Peace, a grassroots organization aimed at fighting crime and restoring peace in the lives of the island’s citizen. And while Footprints for Peace is working with Orio to get the COP program off the ground in San Pedro Town, they are also championing another cause. They will also be turning to the community for support to add pressure on government in an effort to improve the island’s health system. Despite pumping an estimated over 50% of all tourism dollars into government coffers, San Pedro Town is the only municipality without a hospital and without a 24-hour basic medical facility. Despite being promised by the current administration, (prior to them being elected in 2008) that promise has been unfulfilled; something that Footprints for Peace says is disappointing to say the least. “We cannot possibly continue like this and feel like everything is fine on our island. Our leaders are violating our human rights – equal opportunity to 24-hour basic health service,” indicated a Footprint for Peace spokesperson.

Police have no leads in the murder of Alfred “Cat” Kelvin
Police in San Pedro Town have no leads in the murder of a man that occurred in the wee hours of Saturday May 31st. The victim has been identified as 49 year old Alfred “Cat” Kelvin, of no fixed address in San Pedro Town. The incident occurred at the corner of Seaweed and Sandpiper Streets in the San Juan Area sometime around 2AM. Officer commanding the San Pedro Police Formation, Assistant Superintendent of Police Luis Castellanos said that prior to the incident, officers on patrol in the area saw the victim walking towards Caniste Street in the San Juan Area. “About 2:05AM we received information of a single gunshot being fired in the area of San Juan. Police visited Seaweed Street in the San Juan Area where they saw the apparent lifeless body of a Creole male and established his identity to be Alfred Kelvin. The 49-year-old Belizean unemployed was suffering from a single gunshot wound to the right eye that exited the right back portion of the head,” detailed Castellanos. He said that they believe the victim was executed at close range.

Placencia Mangrove Planting Project honors Adrian Vernon
The morning of Friday, May 30th saw more than forty volunteers gathered in the Crimson Development community area of Placencia Village to participate in a mangrove planting activity organized in memory of environmentalist Adrian Vernon. Approximately four hundred seedlings were planted by members of the Vernon family, the World Wildlife Fund, the Southern Environmental Association, Oceana, the Placencia Village Council, Placencia Citizens for Sustainable Development, the Placencia Fishermen’s Cooperative, Friends of the Placencia Lagoon and the Coco Plum Resort and Residential Development. The mangroves now line the canal adjacent to the Placencia airstrip and will serve as a buffer for the residential plots of the Crimson Development community area.

Ambergris Today

Tropic Air Increases Flights To Cancun To Allow For Same Day European Connections
Tropic Air today announced that it will be adding two additional roundtrip flights between Belize International (BZE) and Cancun International (CUN) Airports starting November 1, 2014. These flights will be on Tuesdays and Saturdays, and will be in addition to the current daily flight. More importantly, these two new frequencies, will allow for the first time, our European visitors to connect southbound (same day) to Belize in Cancun. Passengers will be able to transit in Cancun from Frankfurt, London, Manchester, Paris, Madrid, Munich and Amsterdam and get to Belize without cumbersome overnights. The current daily flight already allows for similar connections to be made northbound without overnighting.

How can Citizens on Patrol help fight Crime
Citizens on Patrol is a voluntary program, the commissioner of police has elected to create the citizens to take an active part in crime prevention efforts within the neighborhoods where they live. Citizens will be provided with training, equipment and identification. What is Citizens on Patrol? Citizens on Patrol is a Community Policing program sponsored by the Belize Police Department. The purpose of the program is to enlist private citizens to volunteer time to actively patrol their community, to listen, watch and report and/or criminal behavior to the police. Citizens on Patrol provide greater observation of neighborhoods, both residential and business which increases police presence in the community and reduces crime. How do citizens on patrol benefit my neighborhood? Your neighborhood benefits by supporting COP volunteers who work closely with Belize Police Department in patrolling and providing security for homeowners and business through increased community involvement citizens on patrol clearly identified by the programs official shirt and cap, serves as visible presence in the community discouraging illegal behavior. In addition COP fosters a vital and important relationship between police and the community, aiding in prompt police response to potential problems. By working together, COP members and police officers make neighborhoods safer and more enjoyable places to live and work.

Flashbacks: Meet Emcee and Toastmaster Angel Nuñez
A lot of people know Angel Nunez as a high school teacher and Principal and today he is being known as T V host of the San Pedro Morning Show. But did you know that he is the emcee with the longest record in Belize to date? His passion as Master of Ceremonies began back in 1971 when he began teaching at San Pedro high and was secretary of the village council under Chairman Enrique Staines Sr. (RIP). His first job was at a Miss San Pedro Beauty pageant and then he let out lose. Nuñez has done emceeing from 1971 to 2014 (43 years) to include weddings, birthdays, Quinceaños, September Celebrations, Township Night, Township Anniversaries, Costa Maya Festivals, Dia de San Pedro, PTA meetings, political events, Christmas events, Lions socials, Lions conventions, political conventions, sporting events and trophy presentations, community demonstrations, Peace Rallies to name a few. Nuñez has emceed mostly in San Pedro Town, but has also worked in Belize City, San Ignacio, Belmopan, Corozal, Chetumal, and several cities in Virginia USA during a student exchange with Nelson County High School. His memorable moment- creating stars like Jeffery Eiley, Barrington Castillo and Alex Noralez.

25 Years Ago: A Time When School Made Napping Mandatory
School is school and you can assume that it is the same everyday and everywhere, but is it? Indeed there are marked differences of school today and Years Ago in San Pedro. Let’s take a peek. SLEEPING PERIOD: There are approximately 8 subject periods scheduled each day but have you heard of a subject called “Sleeping Period” given half an hour every day? Every day at about 1:30 in the afternoon when the bell rang, the Beginners Class teacher would announce to the infants that it was sleeping period. The children were required to lay their heads on their arms which were on the desk, close their eyes and go to sleep for half an hour. Many of the infants took their nap but some simply played under the desks. Of course the teacher supervised and was there to ensure that everyone got this required nap in the afternoon.

Misc Belizean Sources

Belize Audubon Society Hosts 45th Annual General Meeting
The Belize Audubon Society held its 45th Annual General Meeting on Saturday May 31st at the Radisson Fort George Hotel with members attending from across Belize to share in the achievements of the organization for the year 2013 and to elect members of the Board. Key achievements for the Belize Audubon Society in 2013 were the restructuring of the Conservation Program to increase activities in research and monitoring, strengthening partnerships with enforcement agencies (such as Belize Defence Force, Special Patrol Unit and Belize Coast Guard), fitting of two BAS protected areas with solar power systems and satellite internet access for improved communication and signing of the new co-management agreement with the Ministry of Forest, Fisheries and Sustainable Development (Forest Department) for the safeguarding of 8 protected areas. At the close of the AGM, the elected Board of Directors of the Belize Audubon Society for the year 2014 - 2015 are: Earl Green, President; Mike Heusner, 1st Vice President; Carlos Matus, 2nd Vice President; Simon Reardon Smith, Treasurer; Linda Searle, 1st Secretary; Judy Lumb, 2nd Secretary; Lascelle Tillett, Director; Rudi Burgos, Director; Lisa Zayden, Director; Carlton Young, Director; Anicasio Garcia, Director; Julie Robinson, Director; and Ernest Raymond Sr., Director.

Belize Screen on the Green is back for the month of June!
Please join us on Thursday, June 12th at GG Field in Belmopan for a screening of the movie, "The Blind Side." The Blind Side is a 2009 American semi-biographical sports drama film. It was written and directed by John Lee Hancock, and based on the 2006 book The Blind Side: Evolution of a Game by Michael Lewis. The storyline features Michael Oher, an offensive lineman who plays for the Tennessee Titans of the NFL. The film follows Oher from his impoverished upbringing, through his years at Wingate Christian School (a fictional representation of Briarcrest Christian School in Memphis, Tennessee), his adoption by Sean and Leigh Anne Tuohy, to his position as one of the most highly coveted prospects in college football, then finally becoming a first-round pick in the NFL by the Baltimore Ravens.

St. Paul's Anglican School will be representing Corozal District in the National Festival of Arts in Belize City
With great honor and pride, St. Paul's Anglican School will be representing Corozal District in the National Festival of Arts in Belize City, Wednesday 4th of June, 2014. They will be performing in a Mestizo Cultural dance. Congrats to all the students, Principal Mrs. Valerie Rogers, Mrs. Nancy Nancy Robateau Aguilar and Mrs. Concepcion Tun, the class teachers, for the effort and hard work in achieving this success for our school.

Communications upgrades in Belize
The U.S. is working with GOB to make much needed communications upgrades in Belize. A CARSI-funded upgrade to the Baldy Beacon radio communications tower began May 13 that added twenty four meters to the existing tower to improve Belize Government communications capacity across the country. Additional upgrades at Baldy Beacon will include a new guard station house for the Belize Defense Force (BDF), a solar plant to provide for the electrical needs and a backhaul system to connect the site with the internet.

The Children's Art Jamboree
The Children's Art Jamboree was a HUGE success! We had so much fun! A very BIG "thank you" goes to the Houses of Cultures, Schools and Cultural Associations for their participation: National Kriol Council, Gulisi Community Primary School, Tumul K'in Center of Learning, Benque House of Culture (NICH), Benque Marimba Youth Academy, Banquitas House of Culture (NICH), San Jose (Nuevo) Palmar Community Page, Corozal House of Culture (NICH), Paraiso Gov't School, Carlos Carrillo ...and a special thank you to our ring-leader OZZY The Clown!

Walk for a Green Belize
The Department of the Environment, Belize Solid Waste Management Authority, and the Belize Audubon Society are having another Walk for a Green Belize Clean-up campaign. There will be 2 in Cayo this Saturday, with the 1st starting at 6:00am in front of the Uno station and the 2nd starting at 7:00am at the Guanacaste National Park. In related news the DoE is having an essay competition.. "Department of the Environment is hosting an Essay Competition which is open to the General Public! All you have to do is write an essay consisting of no more than 400 words and explain what the Environment means to you and what you can do to help mitigate the effects of climate change on your Environment! The competition starts today and ends on June 20, 2014 and your essay will become a newspaper article on two widely circulated newspapers! As your prize you will be rewarded with a $125 gift certificate!"

Nicole C. Mullen Concert
Nicole C. Mullen had her Crown Him concert in Belmopan this weekend. She had some musical workshops in the days leading up to it. Looks like everyone had a great time. "We had such an AMAZING time last night at the concert here in Belize! To GOD be the GLORY! The Lord held back the rain! Lots of people showed up. We worshiped, we danced, we sang, we spoke the Word and young people and adults gave their lives to the Lord! I can't stop thanking HIM! Ya'll those babies sang and danced their hearts out!!!"

Our Lady of Guadalupe Graduation
This is the time for graduations, and Our Lady of Guadalupe High School just had theirs. Congratulations, graduates! In related news, Eden High School had 81 graduates.

Rotary Scholars Awards Ceremony
Congratulations to the 6 Rotary Scholars! Rotary had an awards ceremony for their achievement. Congratulations to Rosalba Landero, for being the top student, and getting the Rafael Cal scholarship. "Oh what a night! Six High School students, recipients of the Rafael Cal Memorial scholarship fund by the Rotary Club of San Ignacio, were honored and recognized their efforts and achievement. The top student, Rosalba Landero, of this group of graduating seniors from the three High Schools in San Ignacio and Santa Elena Towns received the Paulita Bedran Memorial scholarship to continue her studies at a tertiary education institution."

SHJC 2014 Graduation
Congratulations, Sacred Heart Junior College graduates! SHJC had their 14th commencement exercise on Saturday. Over 80 students graduated. The Benque Marimba Academy played many great songs at the graduation(Pomp and Circumstance practice). We wish them all the best, as the go forth, and make Belize a better place.

Western Ballaz Host No Limit in Playoff Game 3
The Western Ballaz are hosting the No Limit this Friday. If you wear your Western Ballaz shirt, or white shirt, entry is only $5. The Benque Viejo Marching Band will be playing before the game. Come cheer on the best team in the league. They'll be travelling to San Pedro for a game against the Tiger Sharks, which will be on Sunday at 1:00pm. "WIN or GO HOME!!! We brought it back home for our fans. You can't miss this game on Friday. Come early to be entertained by the 2014 National Band Fest Champion, Benque Viejo Marching Band, as they perform from 7:15 -8:00 on Friday."

Channel 7

CEO Singh Says Puerto Azul Project Needs Downscaling
The controversy continues to rage around the proposed Puerto Azul project. Even though the public and the conservation community has been assured that it's not even near to political or environmental approval, the well publicized pictures of two ranking ministers of government profiling at a Puerto Azul launch gala in Cannes, France, has sent the opposite message. And so today the media asked Mike Singh, CEO in the Ministry of Investment Promotion if some kind of agreement, either spoken or unspoken has been given to the Puerto Azul investors. He said Puerto Azul is not even close to a green light: Daniel Ortiz "What should the public make from seeing your minister in France for the Puerto Azul gala event?" Mike Singh, CEO - BELTRAIDE "I think the public has already said what they make of it. Puerto Azul is an early stage project, by no means is not at any level where any approvals have been given. I sat on the evaluation committee on the first time the project was presented and I will tell you my opinion is that some things in the project are a little bit too fantastical and as a Belizean there are some things on there that I think needs to be shaved down and my advice to them is that if you guys want to do a project in Belize I think it needs to be at a level that is acceptable to what our environment can handle, to what our culture can handle and that will give maximum benefits to Belizeans. I am not convince that the first project that I saw does that at all."

Nurses Association Reason With Ministry
2 weeks ago, we told you about the complaints from the Nurses Association of Belize. They said that Health CEO Peter Allen had made a decision to transfer 9 senior nurses, which wasn't in the best interest of the nurses, or the provision of optimal healthcare services. Today, the Association got a chance to voice their concerns in a meeting with the Minister of Health, the CEO, and other senior health officials. It took place in Belmopan, and it lasted for 2 hours. When the representatives of the association left the meeting an hour and a half ago, we got a chance to speak with the President. She told us that the Association made a good presentation to the Ministry as to why those nurses needed to remain where they are. Laura Longsworth, President - Nurses Association of Belize "We understand that it was certainly not only the responsibility of the CEO in terms of making those decisions, but it was a group of persons who sat with that and so I know we said that he was the one that made the decision but we are satisfied that we had persons who had input in that.

Yhony's Employee Charged For Assault On Vitalino Reyes Jr.
23 year old Vitalino Reyes Jr remains in a coma at the KHMH tonight - and today the man accused of beating him unconscious at the Long Island Bar was arraigned in court. He is 30 year old Leon Gentle, an employee of Yohnny Rosado and a resident of 14 Banak Street. He was charged with dangerous harm and use of deadly means of harm when he appeared today before Senior Magistrate Sharon Fraser. Gentle was represented by Audrey Matura-Shepherd who told the court that her client was beaten by the police and forced to participate in an identification parade. Gentle said that the police punched him to the jaw, choked him and stomped on his chest. Gentle was released on a bail of $7,000 and his case was adjourned until July 24. Rosado told the press yesterday that his employees were close to him and 20 feet from Reyes Jr when suddenly they saw him on the ground.

KHMH Discusses The Discarded Foetus
The discarded fetus found at the KHMH was the product of improper procedure. That's what a short press release from the hospital announced today. But was it a fetus at all? The press release refers to what was found in the box as a "product of conception." Now, this may sound like a euphemism, but it's actually a medical term for the product of a miscarriage, in a pregnancy that was not viable. Now, what was that doing decomposing under a hospital bed in the Emergency Room? The KHMH has a lot to answer for in this case and a sheepish release refers to it as an "unfortunate discovery" and says, quote, "Our internal investigation revealed a clear link between a patient encounter and the product of conception, and, sadly, established that appropriate procedures were not followed." End quote. All that to say, basically, a patient experiencing a miscarriage came in, and the discharge should have been discarded, but someone wasn't doing their job and just left it there.

Belmopan Police Caught Purse Snatcher In the Act
Tonight, a 17 year-old minor is in the custody of Belmopan Police, after he was caught today in the act of committing a crime. A student was walking on the pathway between Belmopan Comprehensive High School and Social Security Board when the minor saw her texting on her phone. He took the opportunity to run by and snatch it out of her hand along with her purse, but police who were in the area managed to catch him. It caused a bit of commotion because gunshots were fired, but the Belmopan Police Commander told us that no one was hurt, and the minor was detained quite easily: Supt. Howell Gillett - OC, Belmopan Police "A student by the name of Giselle reported that somewhere between Belmopan Comprehensive School - with quick police response led to the apprehension of a male person whose name I cannot call because of his age, he is still a minor. In the interim there a few things that I would like to ask those passersby to look into and those include - we ask them to walk in large groups rather than walking alone. Do not expose valuables, like your phone or your chain, make yourself less of a target to robbers. I have ask my officers to be very robust especially when engaging these criminals."

UNIDOS, An Enterprise Opportunity For Small Businesses
UNIDO means "united" in Spanish, but it also stands for the United Nations Industrial Development Organization. It's a body which specializes in forming what are known as export consortia - which is plural for consortium. In plain language, that means getting small businesses together so that they can export their products. Here's how it works: many small businesses don't have enough volume or know how to get their products exported. So UNIDOS has a system of getting many small producers together, using know how to raise their products to export grade, and then combining their volume to get those products out into the world. The programme was launched in Belize today and Trade CEO Mike Singh explained how the programme would work for small and medium enterprises:.. Mike Singh, CEO - BELTRAIDE "When you speak about a consortia which is essentially getting exporters together in a group and it works very well with small exporters that may not have the wherewithal to go after markets around, but by combining resources and building the mechanism and how these resources can be combined. That's really what the training will be about for the next two days. Today what we are talking about is how do we get people together as groups so that they can have economies scale to be able to combine their resources to access markets that they can't do on their own."

Green Tropics And Farmers Compromising
And at that UNIDOS event today, the media got a chance to talk to CEO in the Ministry of Agriculture Jose Alpuche about Green Tropics. The Spanish owned company is moving ahead with it's sugar cane factory, but it still has to settle matters with 30 Valley of Peace farmers who had their 150 to 200 acres of vegetables wiped out by the multi-national's pesticides. It would be a story of straight victimization except that the small farmers are squatting on Green Tropics Land. And that ambiguity is what had the CEO walking on eggshells today:.. Jose Alpuche, CEO - Ministry of Agriculture "I know the parties are continuing negotiations. We've been told by both parties that they have some parameters - broad parameters on which they agree. They are now working on the proverbial details, but we believe that both parties are on the way to negotiating an amicable solution." Daniel Ortiz "Part of the issue, we've been informed is that while it is indeed this pesticide that damaged the crops, those farmers were supposedly squatting on Green Tropics land. As a member of government have you been such informed?"

Carlos Perrera Talks About Those Vans
11 Days ago, we told you about the internal investigation at the KHMH into the acquisition of two 2012 Ford vans. A report whose findings have been leaked to 7News shows that there were irregularities such as the certificate of registration saying that the vans are 15 seaters, when they are only 12 seaters, and that the receiving report from the HOSPITAL'S Stores Department does not match with Bill of Sales from a Florida car dealer named Matthew Currie where the vans were purchased. But Financial Controller Carlos Perrera says he had nothing to do with it. We reported that he was under scrutiny and indeed his name comes up a few times in the preliminary report that we have seen. But Perrera has lawyered up. He's gotten his attorney, Darrell Bradley to write us saying quote, "there's no investigation on my client regarding the procurement of any vans at the KHMH and my client is not under scrutiny involved in the procurement of the vans." The letter also says , quote, "at no time did my client go to Fort Lauderdale to inspect these vans prior to procurement. "

Channel 7 Will Air 2014 World Cup
This year you'll be able to watch the World Cup from Brazil without wincing every time ESPN commentators refer to the beautiful game as "soccer" or start cheerleading for team USA. That's because Channel 7 has acquired the exclusive broadcast rights for Belize for the 2014 World Cup from the regional distributor International Media Content. We'll be airing 64 of the world cup matches starting on June 12th at 1:15 pm with the opening ceremonies followed by the first game for the home team, as Brazil takes on Croatia. All games will have international commentary. But for those who like your US commentators on ESPN just fine, that will also be available. Through a sub licensing agreement, the Cable Television Operators Association will be airing those channels as usual - so both coverage options will be available.

The Festival Of the Arts
This morning students from across the country attended the launch of the 2014 National Festival of Arts. This year's opening ceremony was held on the Bird's Isle basketball court and it was followed by a big art jamboree. 7news was there to capture the moment. Kim Vasquez - Youth Development Officer "This is the official launched and children jamboree of the national festival of arts. This will kick off two weeks of activities and events on the calendar. Today is just to immerse ourselves and have fun. Its an open day, we will have primary school students coming in throughout the course of the day and we have all 6 districts present. We had a bus from each district come in and what they will be doing is sharing cultural displays and having fun with each other within the arts." "We have present right now not only schools but we have artistic organizations from the districts, but we have 6 groups here all together and we also have the national Creole council present. We have a couple individual artists as well here today."

Rowan's Going To Commonwealth Games
He's climbed Victoria Peak, dived the Blue Hole and Walked from san Ignacio to Belize City - and this year Rowan Garel will be going to Scotland. The blind 16 year old has officially been named Belize's Youth Ambassador for the Commonwealth Games in Glasgow from late July to early August. But before he goes, Rowan will be helping out at BCVI's annual summer camp in mid July. This year, 40 children are participating and BCVI is fundraising. You can make donations directly to their account or through their PayPal link at

What Strongmen Can Do
Last night, we introduced you the Champion of the 2014 Bodybuilding and Body Fitness strongman competition, Victor Valencia. But, the unusual competition is about more than who won - it's about all the crazy stuff these strongmen had to do! Tonight, we take a closer look at the competition: Daniel Ortiz reporting Emir Perez of the Muscle Hut Fitness Club in Belmopan scored 19 pts to win the $350 third prize, won the third event, the clean and press with a 125lbs, doing 30 repetitions in 90 seconds. Emir Perez "This is my first time competing in training for like a year and a half now. It's been an amazing experience." Valencia was second with 29 repetitions, while Theo Gentle was third with 25 reps and Gallardo finished fourth with 22 reps. Valencia and Perez tied for first place in the fourth event, the dead lift, Perez lifting 455lbs, and Valencia matching him but neither was able to lift the next weight at 475lbs. In the tie breaker using a 300lbs weight; Valencia lifted 9 reps in 30 seconds; while Perez only managed 6 reps in 30 seconds. Gallardo was 3rd and Theo Gentle - 4th.

Channel 5

K.H.M.H. says decaying fetus is a “product of conception”
The discovery of a fetus under a bed is the latest scandal to hit the Karl Heusner Memorial Hospital. On Friday, a decomposed fetus was discovered only when an Orange [...]

C.E.O. Mike Singh doesn’t support the Puerto Azul project
The Puerto Azul luxury facility has come under sustained fire from environmentalists following the launch of the Puerto Azul Experience Party at a glitzy event held in the French Riviera [...]

Mike Singh defends the attendance of Ministers Contreras and Heredia at Puerto Azul unveiling
The media grilled Mike Singh about the participation of Contreras and Heredia at the Puerto Azul Experience Party at Cannes. So was it premature for the project to be unveiled [...]

Vitalino Reyes Junior shows signs of recovery; Leon Gentle charged for his attack
There is positive development in the condition of twenty-three year old Vitalino Reyes Junior. After four days in a coma, Reyes Junior today showed signs of recovery. According to his [...]

Was K.H.M.H. administration negligent in respect of decaying fetus?
You’ve heard from the K.H.M.H. about the “production of conception.” So tonight’s question is: Was the administration of the K.H.M.H. negligent in respect of the decaying fetus found under a [...]

The Belize Jaguars still not paid for Gold Cup games
Belizean footballers who played for the national team at the Gold Cup one year ago have still not been paid in full, as contracted by the Football Federation of Belize. [...]

Belmopan Police stops robber in his tracks
Belmopan Police believe that a minor may be responsible for a spate of recent walk-way jackings in that city. That minor was captured this morning on Oriole Street in the [...]

Lloyd Alexander King committed to stand trial for murder of Ronald Rivers
Lloyd Alexander King, accused of the cold-blooded murder of Belize City tour guide Ronald Rivers in March 2013, appeared unrepresented before Senior Magistrate Sharon Fraser earlier today, where a preliminary [...]

Supreme Court grants leave for substantive hearing in land case of Jose Novelo
In April, we brought you the story of Orange Walk resident Jose Novelo. Novelo had been working on fifty-four acres of land in Indian Church for more than four decades, [...]

Artists want to know where is Music Ambassador, Shyne Barrow
On Friday, a few artists and DJs held a protest in Belize City because they say they need more support from government, and specifically from the Ministry of Culture. They [...]

Update on dispute between Green Tropics and Valley of Peace farmers
The Ministry of Agriculture has confirmed that the destruction of vegetation in Valley of Peace by Green Tropics back in mid-March was as the result of the use of the [...]

Family of Escuela Mexico students prepared to proceed with legal action against the school
On April fourth, a pair of students on a class trip to the Che Chem Ha Cave in Benque Viejo perished in the Macal River, where they were freshening up [...]

The opening of the National Festival of Arts 2014
The National Festival of Arts opened this morning with a bang at Bird’s Isle with the participation of schools from across the country. The presentations were varied including cultural performances [...]

A workshop on the branding of Belizean products exported to international markets
A two-day workshop began today at the Radisson Fort George in Belize City. It focuses on branding the Belizean products that are exported to various markets around the world. Dubbed [...]

Stakeholders dialogue on how to improve the standard of products
In attendance today were various stakeholders from the private and public sectors including BELTRAIDE, the Belize Chamber of Commerce and Industry as well as entrepreneurs and small business owners who [...]


MONRA Holds Consultation For Development Of Agriculture Policy
Every year, throughout the course of the year we have brought you the critical issues affecting the agriculture sector. The sector in the country is today met with many challenges but as it is one of the biggest foreign exchange earners for the country, the Ministry of Natural Resources and Agriculture has taken matters seriously. The Ministry officials are currently on a countrywide consultation with stakeholders for the development of a policy for the agriculture sector. That consultation was held today in the Orange Walk District. Our News team stopped by to find out more about the initiative. Dalila Ical – Reporting There are a number of issues that need urgent attention in the agriculture sector and this has triggered the move by government to reach out to the various stakeholders for their input on developing a policy that will guide the agriculture sector into the right places. Ricardo Thompson is the Principal Agriculture Officer. Ricardo Thompson – Principal Agriculture Officer, MONRA “Some of these issues are climate change and climate variability some of the other ones are dwindling preferential markets, our aging former population and many other issues that need to be actually articulated in our policy.”

Orange Walk NEMO Monitors Areas Prone To Flooding
Three days of almost continuous rains have brought flooding to some households in the North. This morning our assessment revealed areas prone to flooding include; Trail Farm, riverside and the surrounding village of San Jose. The rains have prompted officials at the National Emergency Management Organization (NEMO) to monitor the situation. According to Suleima Celiz, NEMO District Coordinator for Orange Walk, their hurricane district and town plan is ready to be activated should the flooding affect families that would need to evacuate their homes. Suleima Celiz– NEMO District Coordinator “Once I gone out this morning around Trial Farm and I saw some families that had water in their house but nothing major” Maria Novelo – reporter “Do you guys offering assistance in the event that some of them would have to evacuate?” Suleima Celiz– NEMO District Coordinator “Yes, we have families that need to evacuate and we will open a shelter so that we can put them in there.”

Upgraded Charge Of Murder For The Death Of Giovanny Borland
Tonight, 24 four year old Joseph West is expected to face an upgraded charge of Murder for the death of 34 year old Giovanni Borland, who passed away on Friday due to the severe head injuries that he sustained on the night of May 11th. As we’ve reported, West is accused of attacking Giovanni Borland after 11:00pm at ‘Mil Amores’ bar in Libertad where both men got into an argument. And while their seems to be many conflicting reports from police and the media, Borland’s uncle, Carl Borland spoke on the sequence of events that night with our colleagues at 7News! Here is that insert… Carl Borland– Uncle of Deceased On the eleventh of May, I think approximately around eleven-thirty or thereabout, he was at a bar in Libertad socializing when he had a misunderstanding with about five members of a particular family—all of them are family members—of that said village. He was chased from the bar and he retreated and ran towards the house that he was staying and upon reaching in front of that, apparently he tripped and fell on his face. When he fell on his face, he was chopped from behind, back of the head. A very large chop wound that caused piece of his head to dislocate, to come off and his brains was exposed. He was assisted by some members of the village and was rushed to the Corozal Hospital and from there to the K.H.M.H.”

Abandoned Fetus At KHMH
Tonight, there are more questions than answers on the discovery of an abandoned fetus at the observation room of the Karl Heusner Memorial Hospital. Attempts made to get comment were futile as officials remain tight lipped about the incident. According to the police, they were informed of the fetus on Saturday around 8:45 when the KHMH’s Assistant Unit Manager reported that a female patient alerted nurses of a scent coming from under the bed that she was lying on in the observation room. Upon making checks they discovered what appeared to be residue of human tissue believed to be a fetus in a small white box under the bed in an apparent state of decomposition. It’s an odd but grotesque situation for the authorities and officials of the KHMH to handle. More on this as the story develops.

More Graduates And No Jobs In The Market
It’s Graduation season….. and it’s no secret the economic climate is hardly lush with employment opportunities for college graduates. The various universities, both public and private, churn out hundreds of graduates who are unable to find job placements. According to many accounts, recent graduates are finding it increasingly difficult to secure a job, and those who do find work are often confined to low-wage positions. Stories of this nature raise troubling questions about whether a college degree still helps people find good jobs. And while there are many theories as to the factors of unemployment, graduates are completing school with a degree and a head full of knowledge, but still are not impressing the white-collar employers. Reporter Maria Novelo has the story.

KHMH Launches Interim Investigation
The public pressure placed on the Karl Heusner Memorial Hospital has prompted authorities at the institution to issue a statement to the media surrounding the alleged ghastly discovery of a decomposing fetus in a small white box under the bed of the Accident and Emergency room. According to the KHMH and we quote “an active investigation was immediately launched, which was extended to include the police department in accordance with the law. Our internal investigation revealed a clear link between a patient encounter and the product of conception, and sadly established that appropriate procedures were not followed. We can report however, that the patient was managed appropriately and discharged.” End quote.


Taiwan Embassy Donates to Art Project for Primary School Students
The Embassy on the Republic of China presented a cheque for thirty five thousand two hundred and six dollars to the President of the National Institute for Culture and History (NICH) which is to be used for the implementation of a pilot project for primary schools. The Primary Schools Art Skills Training Project seeks to address the critical need to increase accessibility and affordability of creative arts programs for the children of Belize and to provide opportunities for an estimated fifty students with the aim of increasing their abilities to express themselves creatively through structured training program. According to Diane Haylock, the project is geared at offering training in art skills for a number of primary school students in Belize City. DIANE HAYLOCK President National Institute for Culture and History “What the program entails is to provide training to children in primary schools, initially in Belize City, for them to develop their skills; a lot of children have the talent but how do you take that talent and turn it into a real work of art. Unfortunately as I was saying before, our schools do not really provide our children with these opportunities. So as a way of filling the void we’re providing this training and since we only have one teacher we’re getting students from different schools. So I suppose it’ll probably be about 3 maybe 4 students from each of the primary schools in Belize City.”

NICH President: Strategy Needed for Musical Ambassador
Last week less than a handful of Belizean artists, staged a small protest at Battle Field Park. They are demanding that Moses Michael Levi- formally known as Jamal “SHYNE” Barrow be removed as Belize’s Musical Ambassador. The group also demanded that Diane Haylock be removed at the President of the National Institute of Culture and History. Today, Haylock responded to both demands. DIANE HAYLOCK President National Institute for Culture and History “I have absolutely nothing to say; what I would say to our artists, if they want to have a discussion with us at NICH about issues of concern, the door is open and they can come and sit with us and have a constructive dialogue. I didn’t choose to place Shyne as the Musical Ambassador and if they have that concern they will have to speak to the Ministry of Culture. My issue, my concern is that if people have issues, then you come to the table and you sit down and you dialogue.

Clarity on the Puerto Azul Proposed Development
Much concern grew among the environmental community when pictures of Minister of Tourism Manuel Heredia Jr. and Minister of Investment, Erwin Contreras at the Cannes film festival. Reports were that the Ministers were there scouting investors for what is known as the Puerto Azul Project. Investors want to build a mega resort on Northern 2 Caye, of the Lighthouse Caye Area in Belizean waters. CEO in the Ministry of Trade, Mike Singh, assured that there has been no decision made on the project. MICHAEL SINGH Chief Executive Officer Ministry of Trade “Today we’re seeing an unprecedented interest in development and investment in Belizean projects at a much larger scale than we have ever seen in the past. That is not a bad thing; that is a good sign. It means that people are paying more interest in Belize and they seem to be confident in Belize’s investment climate, otherwise we would not have these size projects coming in. Now that being said, the fact that two ministers took the time to go and visit the event where the project was being unveiled does not necessarily indicate that they have signed off on it. Those two ministers support development, Minister Contreras who is the minister in our ministry who I work for, he’s pro-development and Minister Heredia is pro-tourism, this is a tourism project. The fact that they went to visit with the developers at the launch of the project is, to me, is neither an indication of a general government support nor an indication of any kind of sign off.”

Negotiations Ongoing with Green Tropics and Farmers
Last month we reported that when Guillermo Marroquin of Valley of Peace in the Cayo District and other farmers met with representatives of Green Tropics Limited two offers were made; accepting monies for crops destroyed or a piece of land belonging to the company. We spoke to Marroquin today who told us the deadline given by the company was this past Friday but farmers are not satisfied with how negotiations are going. CEO in the Ministry of Agriculture and Natural Resources, Jose Alpuche, told us that both parties are trying to come to an amicable solution. JOSE ALPUCHE Chief Executive Officer Ministry of Agriculture “We are informed by both parties, as you know, a couple weeks ago when the results came out, the ministry had facilitated discussions between the two parties with the ministry in a facilitator role. Subsequent to those meetings they have decide to go on their own to attempt to negotiate a solution. We’re informed by both parties that they have the broad picture of an agreement but as usual there’s always a bit of time in working out the details and we’re told by both of them that they are now in the process of working out those details for an amicable solution to the problem.”

> Hospital Calls It ‘Products of Conception’
On Saturday, Love News reported that a fetus had been found at the Karl Heusner Memorial Hospital after someone complained of a foul scent in the Accident and Emergency section of the medical facility. Following the publicizing of that incident, the KHMH went into defense mode today and issued a release stating that the quote “products of conception” was found in its Accident and Emergency Department on Friday and that an investigation was immediately launched which included the involvement of the police department. The investigation revealed that the appropriate procedures were not adhered to and that the hospital is committed to addressing the weaknesses identified in the incident and have the appropriate disciplinary measures carried out. As for the patient involved in the incident, the hospital says she was managed appropriately and discharged from the institution. The hospital has issued an apology to those negatively impacted by the situation.

Gentle Arraigned Following Feud Between Tour Guide Companies
Thirty year old Leon Gentle, an employee of Cave Tubing who allegedly put a man into a coma by hitting him with a bottle, was charged with dangerous harm and use of deadly means of harm when he appeared today before Senior Magistrate Sharon Fraser. Gentle’s attorney, Audrey Matura-Shepherd said that Gentle was beaten by the police while he was in custody and he was forced to participate in an identification parade. Gentle said that a police officer punched him on his jaw while another one choked him. He said that he was also stamped on his chest by a police officer. The incident occurred around 4:30 p.m. on May 29 at Long Island Bar just off Coney Drive in Belize City.

New Board Elected for Belize Audubon Society
The 45th annual general meeting of the Belize Audubon Society was held this past Saturday at the Radisson Fort George Hotel in Belize City. With members coming into the city from across the country, the meeting proved successful as they met to share the organization’s achievements for 2013 as well as to elect new members of the Board. According to a release from BAS, their key achievements included the restructuring of the Conservation Program to increase activities in research and monitoring, strengthening partnerships with enforcement agencies (such as Belize Defense Force, Special Patrol Unit and Belize Coast Guard), fitting of two BAS protected areas with solar power systems and satellite internet access for improved communication and signing of the new co-management agreement with the Ministry of Forest, Fisheries and Sustainable Development (Forest Department) for the safeguarding of 8 protected areas. As for the newly elected Board of Directors, Earl Green now sits as President; 1st Vice President is Mike Heusner; 2nd Vice President is Carlos Matus while the post of Treasurer is now being held by Simon Reardon-Smith; Linda Searle is the 1st Secretary with Judy Lamb as the second. Directors on the Board are Lascelle Tillett, Rudi Burgos, Lisa Zayden, Carlton Young, Anicasio Garcia, Julie Robinson and Ernest Raymond Sr. This new board will serve until June 2015.

Cane Farmers and ASR Still Deadlocked
The Belize Sugar Cane Farmers Association, BSCFA and the American Sugar Refinery, ASR will meet sometime this week to continue negations over the payment of bagasse. This year’s crop season started 3 months late because of weather conditions and the bagasse impasse. The cane farmers want to be paid for the bagasse extracted out from the cane they deliver to the factory but ASR, which recently acquired the factory, was not about to do so, saying that bagasse has no value. We know that both parties are in a deadlock as niether is changing stance; Love News asked the CEO in the Ministry of Agriculture, Jose Alpuche to give us an update. JOSE ALPUCHE Chief Executive Officer Ministry of Agriculture “We were hoping that amongst themselves they can work out an amicable solution. At the outset earlier this year the prime minister had said to the parties that should they require, government would be prepared to acquire external expertise to come and assist them with the technical evaluation of the case, should it be required. That offer is an active offer and it’s still on the table. We are hoping however, that they could indeed resolve the matter amongst themselves but we stand ready to provide the assistance required.”


Following the Lord as Your Guide and Teacher
The verse of this week is taken from Psalm 143: 10 “Teach me to do your will, for you are my God; may your good Spirit lead me on level ground.”

Shooting and Robbery in Belmopan
Shortly after 10:00 am today the Belmopan quick response team was alerted to a robbery on Oriole Street in front of the Belmopan Comprehensive High School. According to police, the individual was apprehended within minutes. Reports had it that police fired a several warning shots at the individual as...

Puerto Azul Project Has No Official Government Backing as Yet
Last week, environmentalists raised alarm with regard to a proposal by Italian investors to completely transform the Northern Two Caye in the Lighthouse Reef range of cayes into an exclusive resort complete with airport runway and massive marina. These types of mega-projects are becoming increasingly a source of conflict...

CEO in the Ministry of Trade Denies NCL Involvement
The Norwegian Cruise Lines project at Harvest Caye can be forgiven for looking like a sort of political grab-tub. Only a few days ago Minister of State Mark King ruthlessly juxtaposed the Government’s need to represent all Belizeans while taking care of their political supporters. This was following a...

Ministry of Agriculture Says it Supports Harmonyville
The Belize Grassroots Youth Empowerment Association (BGYEA) has been given a torrid time by the Ministry of Natural Resources of the buffer zone lining the George Price Highway in a corn-growing project. In fact, it is under an injunction barring its trespass in the zone. But the Ministry of...

Leon Gentle Charged for Attack Against Vitalino Reyes Jr.
30 year old Leon Gentle, an employee of (Butts Up) and resident of Banak Street in Belize City, has been charged with dangerous harm and use of deadly means of harm for the attack on fellow tour guide Vitalino Reyes, Jr. , 23 year old Vitalino Reyes, Jr....

Green Tropics and Valley of Peace Farmers Working Out Solution
Two weeks ago results of tests conducted in Florida, U.S.A., on vegetable crops planted by farmers in Valley of Peace, Cayo District, said to be affected by herbicide spraying confirmed that indeed there was evidence of two herbicides, gyphsphate and metsulphuron-methyl, the latter not registered for use in Belize....

Walkway Robberies on the Increase in Belmopan
Robberies on the walkways within the City of Belmopan are not unheard of. In fact, it is growing into a serious issue. Officer Commanding Belmopan Police Station Supt. Howell Gillette told us that he is aware of the growing concern and explains how he intends to deal with the...

KHMH Apologizes for Fetus Under Hospital Bed for Three Days
Over the past year, Belize’s Flagship Medical Institution, The Karl Heusner Memorial Hospital, has never quite left the public spotlight. Managing… or at least trying to cover “crisis after crisis”, the Administration today issued another release, an apology. Only this time, it is on the Foetus found under the...

Seniority and Qualifications; Necessary for Promotion in the Ministry of Health?
There is still no resolution between the Pharmacy Association and the Ministry of Health over the creation of a post for a Minister’s daughter; that post being the Director of Drug Inspectorate. According to the Pharmacist Association, Danini Contreras superseded senior officials in the Ministry for a position that...


A million GM mosquitos, with lethal infanticide genes, introduced to our region
Director of Health Services Dr. Michael Pitts indicated to us today that there has been talk in scientific circles of a push to get the Caribbean to introduce genetically modified (GM) Aedes aegypti mosquitoes, in a campaign by the UK company, Oxitec, to get its GM organisms widely injected into the region as a mechanism which the company proposes to check the incidences of dengue—which the company says is the fastest-growing mosquito-borne disease which affects at least 50 million people across the world each year, with 25,000 deaths. The issue came to the fore recently with the talk of Brazil using GM mosquitoes to reduce the risk of transmission of diseases to visitors at the World Cup being hosted this month by that country. On Friday, Oxitec announced that Panama became the first country in the region to introduce the GM mosquitoes. Asked whether Belize is considering the introduction of the GM mosquitoes, we were told that no policy decision has been taken, and it has not been up for formal discussion within the Ministry of Health.

Fetus found rotting under KHMH bed
The Karl Heusner Memorial Hospital (KHMH), Belize’s premier public medical facility, is once again walking on hot coals following the confirmed discovery of an abandoned, decomposing fetus inside the hospital, in fact, under a hospital bed in the Observation Ward – an incredible, horrible incident that has the hospital’s authorities fleeing for cover. The discovery was made last Friday night, and police, in a press release dated today, Monday, June 2, said that, “Based on information received of an abandoned fetus at the KHMH, at 8:45 p.m. on Friday, May 30, police visited the KHMH and spoke with the Assistant Unit Manager, who informed them that sometime around 8:00 p.m. that Friday, a female patient alerted nurses of a [stench] coming from under the bed that she was lying on in the observation room of the hospital. “Upon making checks, hospital authorities discovered what appeared to be residues of human tissue, believed to be a fetus, in a small white box under the patient’s bed, in an apparent state of decomposition. “The apparent residue of human tissue, believed to be a fetus, was then taken to the KHMH morgue.” KHMH officials have refused to release any information to the media, other than to say that it is a police matter.

“Cat” Kelvin murdered on Seaweed Street
Alfred “Cat” Kelvin, 49, of the San Juan area of San Pedro, died after he was shot in the head by an unknown shooter while he was walking on Seaweed Street, going towards Camiste Street in the San Juan area in San Pedro at about 1:30 Saturday morning. Superintendent Luis Castellanos, Commander of San Pedro police, said that police were on patrol in the area when they were alerted by the sound of a gunshot, and when they went to an area on Seaweed Street at its intersection with Sandpiper Street (in the direction of Camiste Street), they saw the body of a dark-complexioned man lying on the ground. The man had been shot in the right eye, and he was taken to the San Pedro Polyclinic, where he was declared dead on arrival, and later identified as Alfred “Cat” Kelvin. Kelvin’s aunt, Glenda Coleman, said that she received a text message from San Pedro at about 2:30 Saturday morning informing her that Kelvin had been shot to death. She said that right away, she became weak and began calling relatives.

Tour operators’ war leaves one “critical”
As of press time tonight, a young tour operator, Vitalino Reyes, Jr., 23, is still in a coma at the Karl Heusner Memorial Hospital (KHMH), reportedly after a severe beating by tour operators of a rival business sometime after 6:00 p.m. on Thursday. A routine evening outing turned ugly Reyes, Jr., who, according to a colleague, was socializing with him at a popular club situated off Coney Drive, when they were surrounded, attacked and badly beaten. According to Yoney Vega, who was with Reyes, the mob – which he claimed numbered over 10 persons – consisted of individuals whom he recognized as being members of another tour company. Vega recounted: “He [Vitalino, Jr.] said he wanted to see a friend that he had there [at the club] called Long Island, so we went there and we were there drinking, like two beers, when Yhony’s [Rosado] crowd approached – his staff, they were in full uniform, so all of them could have been distinguished. They came directly towards us and they were laughing, so I told Junior, ‘let’s go, because this doesn’t look right’. Before we moved out, he even called his dad to tell him that we were surrounded by those guys and their intention was to hurt us.”

Thunderclaps herald 2014 Hurricane Season
A wide area of disturbed weather spanning from the Pacific waters south of Mexico, to the Gulf of Mexico, which local forecasters say should continue to pour rain over Belize until Thursday, spawned thunderstorms early Sunday morning, announcing the commencement of the 2014 Atlantic Hurricane Season. The disturbance caused heavy weekend rains in the region, resulting in a mudslide which killed a family of 5 in Huehuetenango, Guatemala. Belize’s Chief Meteorologist, Dennis Gonguez, told Amandala that the area of low pressure is not expected to cause any major impact on local weather, and it is not currently forecast to lead to cyclone formation. Gonguez said that showers are expected to start in the southern part of Belize again tonight and move up to northern Belize, because the low pressure system over our region has been moving very slowly. Although the system has caused inundation along the Philip Goldson International Highway, Gonguez said that the downpours were normal for the rainy season, which spans June to November.

Manatee killed in the Haulover River
Despite the plea of the Fisheries Department and other agencies to boat operators travelling in the Haulover River to be very careful in order to avoid hitting or killing the slow-moving manatee with their boats, a total of four large manatees – members of an endangered species that is protected by law – were killed this week. The most recent discovery was made in the area of the Tourism Village, where a large manatee was found dead, where the Haulover Creek meets the sea, by the crew on a boat on Friday morning. The animal was seen with chop wounds on the back, caused by a boat propeller. Gilbert Pike, 35, a worker on the Kremandala compound, said that on his arrival in the area of the Water Taxi Terminal on Friday morning, he saw the manatee floating in the river. He immediately recovered the dead animal and secured it to the wharf near the Caye Caulker Water Taxi, opposite the Tourism Village, to prevent any possible boat collision with the carcass. The animal was buried later that same day. Jamal Galvez, program coordinator of the Belize Manatee Conservation Program, said that the death of four manatees within just a week is alarming.

Belize escapes sanctions with new anti-money laundering measures
The Caribbean Financial Action Task Force (CFATF) issued a statement Thursday saying that while it has decided to call for counter measures against Guyana over what it deems to be inadequate progress in the passage of counter-terrorism and anti-money laundering legislation, it recognizes that significant progress has been made by Belize. The statement notes that CFATF had required Belize to implement outstanding issues within its action plan, such as customer due diligence requirements, the operational independence of the Financial Intelligence Unit (FIU), and prohibiting dealings with shell banks. “Belize has since brought into force significant mechanisms to address its AML/CFT [anti-money laundering and combating the financing of terrorism] deficiencies. Belize and the CFATF should continue to work together to ensure that Belize’s reform process is completed, by addressing its remaining deficiencies and continue implementing its action plan,” the statement said.

Economic performance projected to improve in Belize and the Caribbean: CDB
Caribbean economies are expected to grow, on average, by around 2.3% in 2014, and Belize’s economy by 2.5% in 2014 and 2015, according to the recently released annual report of the Caribbean Development Bank (CDB). Last week, the Statistical Institute of Belize (SIB) told journalists that the Belize economy had contracted by about 0.4%, but noted that the slight downturn may improve by year-end. The CDB’s preliminary estimates indicate that the region grew by an average of 1.5% in 2013, up slightly from a revised figure of 1.2% for 2012. The CDB report also noted that Jamaica’s agriculture sector took a hit due to Hurricane Sandy in 2012 and drought in 2013, and weather was also a factor in Belize, resulting in declines in citrus and banana output. Rather than lower oil prices, ongoing maintenance and reduced oil field yield, respectively, led to contractions in mining output in Belize and Trinidad and Tobago, said the report. It added that improved overall growth performances in these two economies reflected the general upturn in construction and tourism activity.

Post-mortem says Oscar Armando Gomez Alvarez, 27, was chopped to death
A post-mortem conducted on the body of Oscar Armando Gomez Alvarez, 27, a Guatemalan of Los Tambos, Cayo District, certified that the cause of his death was due to acute lung failure due to acute pulmonary edema due to massive brain thrombosis as a consequence of chop wounds. The autopsy was conducted at the Karl Heusner Memorial Hospital between 3:30 p.m. and 5:30 p.m. yesterday, Thursday. Police said that on Monday, May 18, Alvarez was attacked and chopped multiple times in San Ignacio by an unknown man, and for reasons unknown. He was taken to the San Ignacio Hospital, where he was treated and later released, after which he went to stay in Los Tambos, in the Spanish Lookout area.

Indianville resident post-mortem inconclusive
A post-mortem conducted on the body Francisco Reyes, 65, of Bukut Street in the Indianville area of Punta Gorda, who was found decomposing in his house last Tuesday, could not ascertain the cause of death, due to the state of decomposition of the body. The post-mortem was conducted on site between 4:00 and 5:00 that same Tuesday afternoon, and the examination was carried out by Doctor Mario Estrada Bran, Police coroner. Reyes was buried immediately after the autopsy. Police said that Reyes was found dead in his house on Monday, after neighbors who last saw him on Friday became concerned after not seeing him over the weekend of Saturday and Sunday, May 24 and 25.

PM in Washington to meet IDB prez
According to a release from his office, Prime Minister Dean Barrow, who left the country on an 8-day personal/duty leave this past Tuesday, May 27, is currently in Washington DC, where he visited the president of the Inter-American Development Bank (IDB), reportedly to discuss Belize’s relationship with the bank and other priority areas of collaboration. A release issued by the IDB today reported that Barrow met with IDB president Luis Alberto Moreno, and they spoke about the IDB’s recently approved new 4-year country strategy with Belize, which focuses on public expenditure efficiency and effectiveness, and on promoting private sector development and sustainable export-led growth by concentrating on four priority areas, namely, education, tourism, transport and trade, and tax policies. The 2014 lending program with Belize focuses primarily on road rehabilitation and education, and includes five loans supporting agriculture, citizen security, water and sanitation, solid waste and flood mitigation to the tune of 38 million US dollars.

LETED. Lopez in defence of Professor Bain
i. We do not want scientific research to be suppressed for political reasons. ii. We do not want medical experts and researchers to be bullied and silenced for political reasons. iii. We are concerned that the Vice Chancellor has used C.H.A.R.T. to put political interests over medical and public policy interests. iv. We have not lost confidence in Professor Bain and view any loss of confidence as unjustified. v. Regardless of your moral or political ideologies, the dismissal of an expert for giving an expert opinion is wrong. vi. We are concerned that this is the beginning of more bullying of medical experts, scientists and UWI lecturers who conduct research. vii. We are concerned that the VC is unable or unwilling to make independent decisions concerning C.H.A.R.T. in the broad interest of all citizen stakeholders.

Belize: earning $100 and spending $234.80
The Belize economy has been performing less than stellar from independence until now. Our economic growth has been induced by eternal borrowing. Our external debt has increased steadily since independence with no post-independence government ever having a balanced budget. From January 2010 to January 2014, Belize imported $546 million worth of goods and exported $232.5 million. Our imports exceeded our exports by 134.8 %: it is equivalent to us earning a $100 and spending $234.80. For the 1st quarter of 2014, 37.5 % of our imports were from the United States (US) with an additional 25% from Curacao and Mexico combined. For the first quarter of 2014 we have trade deficits with all our major trading partners except the European Union. Sugar is our number one export earner for the first quarter 2014. We owe $2.5 billion (budget speech 2014/15). No one in government seemed to be alarmed about our dismal economic performance. Regardless of which political party is in government little is done to address our trade deficit. If this is allowed to continue it will cause loss of jobs.

From the Publisher
The Garifuna people experienced traumatic events of a genocidal nature in St. Vincent, Balliceaux, and Roatan. They also experienced traumas in Honduras, but I don’t know of any traumas having been experienced in British Honduras/Belize by the Garinagu. For sure they experienced hard core discrimination in this country, and they have retained the memory of same. When the Garinagu began to come here in numbers in 1802, 1823, or 1832, Belize was the only black territory in Central America, and the Garinagu were known as “Black Caribs,” to differentiate them from the “Yellow Caribs” of St. Vincent. We say that Belize was a black territory because the majority of the population were African or of African descent, and the white Baymen bosses here had come to realize that they required some kind of goodwill from that majority black population in order to remain in control of the settlement. The black population of the settlement of Belize were known as “Creoles,” but there was a buffer population of browns in the settlement who were also known as “Creoles.” The browns were generally closer to the white Baymen in family, religion, and culture than were the black masses of Belize, and they were generally closer to the white Baymen than they were to the black masses. Overall, the buffer population of brown Creoles became Anglican and Methodist in religion beginning in the first half of the nineteenth century.

EDITORIAL: BGYEA comes to town
Sometime last year the Belize Grassroots Youth Empowerment Agency (BGYEA) demonstrated in Belmopan to publicize their Harmonyville grievances. The support they received was disappointing. Now this Saturday, BGYEA comes to Belize City, the population center of the nation, to seek public support for their cause after last month’s bushwhacking by the Ministry of Natural Resources. BGYEA had cleared land along the highway to grow corn in order to finance infrastructure development in Harmonyville. The Ministry arbitrarily said no, and the Cabinet of Belize agreed, going so far as to get an injunction to stop BGYEA with the threat of incarceration and seizure of assets. The problem for BGYEA this Saturday will be similar to the one they faced when they marched in Belmopan. The eight UDP Belize City area representatives will be united in making sure none of their people support the BGYEA protest. On the Opposition PUP side, their two Belize City area representatives, which are the present PUP Leader, Francis Fonseca, in Freetown, and their 1996-2008 Leader, Said Musa, in Fort George, would like the ruling UDP to be embarrassed by a successful BGYEA rally, but the PUP will not bring out its people. The rich people who own huge tracts of idle land in Belize do not wish well for BGYEA, and these rich people include some important PUP campaign financiers.
Tournament games continue each Sunday in the Belize Rural Female Softball Tournament 2014. Five (5) teams are participating in this year’s competition – Lords Bank Sunrise (Lords Bank); Arrows Reloaded (Bermudian Landing); Sandhill Messengers (Sandhill); Orchid Girls (Burrell Boom); and Willows Bank United (Willows Bank). In the opener on Sunday, May 25, Orchid Girls edged Sandhill Messengers, 11-9; winning pitcher was Rebecca Nicholas, and losing pitcher was Karen Hilton. And in the nightcap, Lords Bank Sunrise dropped Arrows Reloaded, 16-4. Stacy Smith got the win, and the loss went to Ardeth McFadzean. On Sunday, June 1, the opener saw Lords Bank clipping Sandhill Messengers in a close one, 4-3. Stacy Smith picked up the win over Karen Hilton. And in the nightcap, Willows Bank won, 17-7, over Orchid Girls. Winning pitcher was Jacqueline Casasola, while the loss was charged to Therese Baptist.

National Primary School
The National Primary School Volleyball Championship takes place this Friday, June 6, at Bird’s Isle in Belize City. Opening ceremonies begin at 8:30 a.m., following which the female and male champions of the 6 districts begin their contest for the 2013-2014 national championship. Representing the 6 districts are: Stann Creek – Holy Angel’s R.C. females and Sacred Heart R.C. males; Belize – Belize Elementary females and males; Cayo – Garden City Primary females and Howard Smith Nazarene males; Orange Walk – Louisiana Gov’t females and Chan Pine Ridge Gov’t males; Toledo – Blue Creek Primary females and Aguacate R.C. males; and Corozal – Our Lady of Guadalupe females and Corozal Methodist males.

The 3rd Annual SMART 13 & Under Football Tournament continued with Week 4 games on Saturday, May 31, at the MCC Grounds. Three teams are still undefeated – Collet Strikers, City Boys and Hattieville United; last tournament’s undefeated champion Brown Bombers already has suffered 2 losses. Ten teams are in the competition, and after a single round-robin regular season, the top 4 teams go on to the knockout semifinals. In game 1 on Saturday, Ladyville clipped Third World, 2-1, with goals from Trivon Bainton and D’Jon Canelo; while Jonah Chebat scored for Third World. In game 2, Collet Strikers dropped Brown Bombers, 1-nil, on a goal by Jomel David. Next, it was Hattieville over Carlston FC, 2-0, with a goal apiece from Christian Caceres and Jaheed Baptist. London Strikers and Heights FC played to a 1-1 draw in game 4, with Eshak King shaking the net for London Strikers, while Ranalf Witty netted for Heights. And in the last game of the day, Akeem Sutherland’s lone goal stood up to give City Boys the 1-nil victory over Rising Stars.

Tigersharks clinches
Two semifinal Game 2’s were played on Friday night, May 30, one in Belize City, the other in Belmopan; and one semifinal series is over, while the other needs a Game 3 to decide who goes to the “Big Dance” in the Finals of this inaugural 2014 National Elite Basketball League (NEBL) tournament. Out west at the UB gymnasium in Belmopan, the visiting San Pedro Tigersharks made it two in a row, as they sealed the deal on the Belmopan Point Bandits, handing them their second loss with a 78-71 score. Leading the Tigersharks were Tyrone Edwards 22 pts 6 rebs, Michael Adams 15 pts 11 rebs, Jamal Kelly 14 pts, and Winston Pratt and Louis Pitterson with 7 pts 7 rebs each; while the Point Bandits were led by Erwin Robinson 13 pts, Jamal Harris 12 pts 7 rebs, Adam Carswell 11 pts 11 rebs, and Shen Li Arnold 10 pts. San Pedro had won Game 1 the previous weekend, 79-60, in San Pedro in the best-of-3 games semifinal series; so they have clinched the series, 2-0, and will take their place in the Finals, where they await the other semifinal series winner.

Fetus found rotting under KHMH bed
The Karl Heusner Memorial Hospital (KHMH), Belize’s premier public medical facility, is once again walking on hot coals following the confirmed discovery of an abandoned, decomposing fetus inside the hospital, in fact, under a hospital bed in the Observation Ward – an incredible, horrible incident that has the hospital’s authorities fleeing for cover. The discovery was made last Friday night, and police, in a press release dated today, Monday, June 2, said that, “Based on information received of an abandoned fetus at the KHMH, at 8:45 p.m. on Friday, May 30, police visited the KHMH and spoke with the Assistant Unit Manager, who informed them that sometime around 8:00 p.m. that Friday, a female patient alerted nurses of a [stench] coming from under the bed that she was lying on in the observation room of the hospital. “Upon making checks, hospital authorities discovered what appeared to be residues of human tissue, believed to be a fetus, in a small white box under the patient’s bed, in an apparent state of decomposition.

Bogus report to police almost sent Mahogany Heights man to prison
A Mahogany Heights man who was involved in a dispute with some other men was almost remanded to prison because of a false report to police that he pulled a firearm on another man. The drama unfolded in the courtroom of Senior Magistrate Sharon Frazer this afternoon when she began arraigning Jerson Grinage, 21, a plumber, on a charge of aggravated assault with a firearm. Before Frazer could ask him to enter a plea, however, Grinage told the court that he never pulled a gun on anyone. Frazer then asked him how the police got the idea that he pulled a gun on the complainant. Grinage directed the Magistrate’s attention to another man in the courtroom, who stood up and identified himself as Yanick Smith, the complainant. Grinage told the court that he only learned about the aggravated assault charge about three hours before, when he was taken to the Queen Street Police Station after his appearance in court this morning on a single count of drug trafficking before Chief Magistrate Ann Marie Smith. professes innocence in case of brutality against competitor
The management and staff of – a local tour operator – called a press conference at the office of their attorney, Audrey Matura-Shepherd, this afternoon, to attempt to clear their name after being accused of being involved in the savage beating of a member of a rival tour company last Thursday. Vitalino Reyes, Jr., is reportedly in a coma at the Karl Heusner Memorial Hospital (KHMH) after being badly beaten by a group of men, allegedly from, in a bar off Coney Drive, and Yoney Vega, who told police that he was with Reyes in the bar, said that he himself was a victim of the attack. Vega claimed to police that he and Reyes were surrounded by men from when they were about to leave the establishment, and that after being stoned with pint bottles, they were both beaten unconscious. While Vega has recovered, his friend, Reyes, Jr., is said to be in a coma at the KHMH. Today, in a press conference held by the owner of, Yhony Rosado, he told the media that he was with 5 of his employees and 2 friends socializing at Long Island Bar, where the incident took place last Thursday, May 29, and admitted that he did see the victims, Vitalino Reyes, Jr., and Yoney Vega, at the bar counter, but “at no time did they have any exchange of glances, words or any physical contact” with Reyes and Vega.

Tour guide, 22, survives shot in the head
A 22-year-old Belize City man who was shot in the head yesterday was fortunate enough to survive the ordeal and to later relate an account of the events leading to his injury, to police. Egbert Bailey, 22, a tour guide who resides in Belize City, reported that he was at his cousin’s home with three friends at about 8:15 last night at Antelope Street Extension in Belize City, watching television when he heard a loud bang, which sounded like a gunshot, and realized that he was bleeding from the right side of the head. Bailey reportedly told police that he looked outside and saw two men whom he recognized, standing about 12 feet away from the house where they were, and further stated that four other loud bangs were also heard from the direction in which the men were standing.

Stevedore remanded on use of deadly means of harm charge
A Belize City stevedore was remanded to the Belize Central Prison on charges of use of deadly means of harm with a firearm and harm after he appeared before Chief Magistrate Ann Marie Smith this morning. Mark Gentle, 25, aka “Mark Vernon,” a resident of Caesar Ridge Road, entered a not guilty plea to the two charges. Gentle is charged along with another man, Kendis Faber, 21, a resident of 2 Fabers Road, who was arraigned and remanded to prison on the same charges last month. Smith denied bail to Gentle due to the nature of the offense. His attorney, Alifa Elrington-Hyde, however, made a submission to the court asking for the charge to be withdrawn from her client after she informed the court that the virtual complainant, Radman Welch, had already given the Director of Public Prosecutions (DPP) a retraction statement, in which he purportedly said that he does not wish to pursue any further court action in the matter. Elrington-Hyde said she has a memorandum in her possession.

Post-mortem says Oscar Armando Gomez Alvarez, 27, was chopped to death
A post-mortem conducted on the body of Oscar Armando Gomez Alvarez, 27, a Guatemalan of Los Tambos, Cayo District, certified that the cause of his death was due to acute lung failure due to acute pulmonary edema due to massive brain thrombosis as a consequence of chop wounds. The autopsy was conducted at the Karl Heusner Memorial Hospital between 3:30 p.m. and 5:30 p.m. yesterday, Thursday. Police said that on Monday, May 18, Alvarez was attacked and chopped multiple times in San Ignacio by an unknown man, and for reasons unknown. He was taken to the San Ignacio Hospital, where he was treated and later released, after which he went to stay in Los Tambos, in the Spanish Lookout area.

Gun violence on La Isla Bonita
Regrettably, gun violence is on the increase in the tourist mecca of San Pedro, and between January and the end of May, four persons have lost their lives to gun violence on the island, and five persons sustained gunshot wounds from which they’re now recovering. On January 20, Michael Wallace, 24, of the San Juan area of San Pedro, was shot and killed during a robbery. The incident occurred about 10:30 that Sunday night on Sandpiper Street. There were no incidents in February, but on March 1, Steven Bowen was shot several times while he was walking in the San Mateo area, at about 7:30 Saturday night. He was shot in both legs, both elbows and in the back. At about 2:00 Thursday morning, March 6, Jeffrey Eiley was beaten and shot to death on the southern end of Barrier Reef Drive. He had been shot several times, and eleven 9mm expended shells were recovered from the scene. Police have since been looking for a man of interest. Five days after Eiley was murdered, Darrington Lauriano was walking on Sandpiper Street at about 9:00 Tuesday night, March 11, when a gunman opened fire at him. People in the area scattered for cover. Lauriano was hit in the back.

Indianville resident post-mortem inconclusive
A post-mortem conducted on the body Francisco Reyes, 65, of Bukut Street in the Indianville area of Punta Gorda, who was found decomposing in his house last Tuesday, could not ascertain the cause of death, due to the state of decomposition of the body. The post-mortem was conducted on site between 4:00 and 5:00 that same Tuesday afternoon, and the examination was carried out by Doctor Mario Estrada Bran, Police coroner. Reyes was buried immediately after the autopsy. Police said that Reyes was found dead in his house on Monday, after neighbors who last saw him on Friday became concerned after not seeing him over the weekend of Saturday and Sunday, May 24 and 25.

Police allege Biscayne man is cannabis farmer and trafficker
A Biscayne man who was arraigned on charges of drug trafficking and cultivation of a controlled drug attempted to plead guilty, but Magistrate Hettie Mae Stewart, before whom he appeared, entered an unequivocal not guilty plea on his behalf, because she felt that he did not understand the nature of the charges that she read to him. Police charged Dwayne Bradley, 24, a fisherman and farmer, with possession of 76.6 grams of cannabis and cultivation of 101 cannabis plants. In court, when Bradley was read the two charges and asked if he understood the charges, he replied that he understood. But when Stewart asked him to enter a plea, he mumbled “guilty.” Conviction on a drug trafficking charge carries a minimum fine of $10,000. It also carries a minimum prison sentence of three years; both the fine and prison term can be imposed on offenders. Cultivation of marijuana carries the same fine as drug trafficking.

Tour operators’ war leaves one “critical”
As of press time tonight, a young tour operator, Vitalino Reyes, Jr., 23, is still in a coma at the Karl Heusner Memorial Hospital (KHMH), reportedly after a severe beating by tour operators of a rival business sometime after 6:00 p.m. on Thursday. A routine evening outing turned ugly Reyes, Jr., who, according to a colleague, was socializing with him at a popular club situated off Coney Drive, when they were surrounded, attacked and badly beaten. According to Yoney Vega, who was with Reyes, the mob – which he claimed numbered over 10 persons – consisted of individuals whom he recognized as being members of another tour company. Vega recounted: “He [Vitalino, Jr.] said he wanted to see a friend that he had there [at the club] called Long Island, so we went there and we were there drinking, like two beers, when Yhony’s [Rosado] crowd approached – his staff, they were in full uniform, so all of them could have been distinguished. They came directly towards us and they were laughing, so I told Junior, ‘let’s go, because this doesn’t look right’. Before we moved out, he even called his dad to tell him that we were surrounded by those guys and their intention was to hurt us.”

3 robberies in Ladyville and Corozal
Two establishments — Lisa’s Restaurant on 5th Avenue and Chang Li Bar and Game Room on 4th Avenue – were robbed in Corozal, and a man walking home on Dollar Bank Road in Hattieville was robbed in a separate incident. In Corozal, two thieves got away with over $1,500 in cash and valuables from the two business places, and in Hattieville, over $225 in cash and valuables was taken from the man who was walking on the Dollar Bank Road. At about 11:30 Friday night, two masked men barged into Chang Li Bar and Game Room on 4th Avenue, Corozal Town. One of the bandits was armed with a sawed-off shotgun, which he pointed at the business owner, and the second bandit, armed with a machete, went to the cash drawer behind the counter and stole all of the money it contained, about $500. The thieves then ran out of the game room. Police have not yet found the thieves.

Supreme Court lifts injunction from Coye family’s millions, frozen in money laundering case
Melonie and Marlene Coye walked out of the Supreme Court of Justice Sonya Young with broad smiles lighting up their faces, as they edged their way past reporters without saying much, following their court victory this morning, giving them access to millions of dollars that the state had frozen during their protracted money laundering case, which began on December 31, 2008, when they were first arrested. For the Coye family, accused of money laundering by the Financial Intelligence Unit, it has been a legal roller coaster ride of ups and downs, victory and defeat, imprisonment, freedom, and death, before today’s court victory. Melonie Coye told reporters, “We just want it to be finally over.” She added, “It’s been hard, it’s been rough, it’s been a long journey and I am very sick this week with the diabetes. I am not feeling too well, but I’m hanging in there.” Almost two months ago, the Court of Appeal quashed the money laundering conviction of Melonie Coye and her late father, Michael Coye, who died less than a week after securing bail pending their money laundering conviction.

Patrick Jones

FEATURE STORY: Helping the Aged in Toledo
Meet Mr. Franklin Caliz. He and a group of friends go on daily missions to lend a helping hand to the elders of this community. And why does he do it? Caliz saus because it is “the right thing to do.” Being a member of the Toledo branch of HelpAge Belize, Calez says he wants to see elders getting better care and social inclusion. As part of the HelpAge social outreach program, Caliz and his group operate a feeding program for the elders. With many elderly left to fend for themselves on a daily basis, many of them alone at home, the efforts of Mr. Caliz and his friends are very much appreciated. “All what we are trying to do is to help change the way elders are treated,” says Caliz. He goes on to say that “not just because we are old we don’t play a role in society. We do count and we want the society to know that we are here and we want to be treated as equal.”

Tour guide charged for attack on another tour guide
Thirty year old Leon Gentle, an employee of (Butts Up) and resident of Banak Street in Belize City, has been charged with dangerous harm and use of deadly means of harm for the attack on fellow tour guide Vitalino Reyes, Jr., 23. The attack happened last Thursday at the Long Island Bar on Blue Marlin Boulevard. As we reported yesterday, around 4:15 p.m. on Thursday May 29, Reyes and colleague Yoney Vega were at the bar when a group of employees led by their boss, Yohnny Rosado, arrived. Rosado insists that the two groups kept well away from each other, but Vega alleges that Gentle approached him and Reyes as they were trying to leave and attacked both of them with pint bottles, causing injury to Vega’s right temple and severe head trauma to Reyes, who remains on life support at the Karl Heusner Memorial Hospital.

Chopping victim succumbs to injuries
Twenty four year old Joseph West is expected to face an upgraded charge of Murder for the death of 34 year old Giovanni Borland. Borland died on Friday, May 30, after being hospitalized with massive chop wounds to the head sustained on the night of May 11. West is accused of attacking Giovanni Borland sometime after 11 o’clock that night at ‘Mil Amores’ bar in Libertad where both men got into an argument. Carl Borland who is the uncle of the deceased says that Giovanni was attacked by as many as five men, all members of the same family who chased him from the bar all the way to the house where he was staying. The uncle says that when Giovanni reached in front of the house he fell down and that was when he was chopped in the head, severing a portion of his skull and exposing his brains. The Borland family is now waiting for the upgrading of the charges against Joseph West to murder, nineteen days after the incident.

Our Lady of Guadalupe High School graduates 73
Our Lady of Guadalupe High School in the Garden City of Belmopan held its 8th Commencement Exercises at the University of Belize Gymnasium on Sunday, June 1st, 2014. Seventy three enthusiastic and anxious young men and women hit the aisle to the rhythm of Pomp and Circumstances played by the Panerriffix Steel Band. After the prayer and National Anthem Jamir Estevan Alpuche, second highest ranking student, delivered the Salutatory Address and the usual Principal’s Remarks was done by Mrs. Barette Belisle. The pride and joy on the faces of the graduates was manifested in their bounce for their hard earned diplomas. Julie Deng, the first highest ranking student, jovially gave her reflection and advice to her graduating class and proud parents and supporters.

Police recover shotgun from allegedly intoxicated man
A man was detained after he was found with a shotgun while under the influence of alcohol. Police on patrol near Tower Hill around 10 pm on Saturday May 31 found a man identified as Bernabe Roberts sitting on the grass and appeared to be under the influence of alcohol. Police then retrieved a 12 gauge shotgun with (1) 12gauge cartridge which he had beside him. Roberts was detained but could not confirm if he was a holder of a valid gun license. Police investigations continue.

Ministry of Agriculture says it supports Harmonyville
The Belize Grassroots Youth Empowerment Association (BGYEA) has been given a rough time by the Ministry of Natural Resources of the buffer zone lining the George Price Highway in a corn-growing project. In fact, it is under an injunction barring its trespass in the zone. But the Ministry of Agriculture, which has been allied with the Ministry of Natural Resources since 2012, says it does support the agricultural aspect of the project. While noting that there are no plans at this time to meet with BGYEA, CEO in the Ministry Jose Alpuche reiterated that support in speaking with reporters today, while distinguishing activities in Harmonyville itself from those in the Buffer Zone. The case for the injunction takes place next week.

Green Tropics and Valley farmers working out solution
Two weeks ago results of tests conducted in Florida, U.S.A., on vegetable crops planted by farmers in Valley of Peace, Cayo District, confirmed that indeed there was evidence of two herbicides, gyphsphate and metsulphuron-methyl, the latter not registered for use in Belize. The President of the Valley of Peace Farmers’ Association has said that they would seek legal action against the company over the crop damage, having rejected two separate offers of monetary compensation and titled land for five acres each. Today, Ministry of Agriculture CEO Jose Alpuche told us that the two sides are sitting down to work out their differences. The two sides are working out some final details but agreed broadly on key issues.

Trade CEO denies NCL involvement
The Norwegian Cruise Lines project at Harvest Caye can be forgiven for looking like a sort of political grab-tub. Only a few days ago Minister of State Mark King ruthlessly juxtaposed the Government’s need to represent all Belizeans while taking care of their political supporters. This was following a meeting in the South with UDP supporters held to, in King’s words, “open communication barriers” with the cruise line so that UDP supporters were not left out of jobs and contracts. King himself also confirmed that he was bidding for a security contract on the island. So what of Ministry of Trade CEO Michael Singh? It is alleged that a dredging company in which he or his family has interest is seeking a contract with NCL. But Singh slammed the door firmly on that allegation today, insisting that neither he nor any family have any personal interest in the project. “Absolutely none,” he told reporters despite repeated questions.


Orange Walk Band Filming in San Pedro
Super Furia band was just in San Pedro filming their upcoming music video called You Promise Me, with Roxana Alcocer singing. She has been the lead vocalist of the popular Orange Walk Band for fifteen years, and recently did a Red Carpet performance in California May 4th 2014. The finished product will get be debuted in on local television: Centaur Cable Network, Wave Tv, Krem TV and Belizean to Da Bone TV. For those of you not in the country, the video will also be visible through various social media networking such as Youtube and Facebook. Near the end of Sunday beach time at Caribbean Villas, Cowboy texted and asked Paul and I to come check out the Orange Walk crew in action, since they were filming at Banana Beach Resort and it was on our way home. We were just leaving and agreed that although we were both done for the day, a quick pop in was ok. Unfortunately by the time we got there they were already done, we chatted a few minutes and the film crew said they would start filming again at 9:00am. Being close to location and knowing full well these things are not always timely, I told them I would see them at 10:00am and Cowboy agreed to go for breakfast after and suggested George’s Kitchen as he had a hankering for biscuits with gravy.

Not In Your Guidebook: Earthship Lands Besides Lubaantun Maya Site in Southern Belize
Last weekend, on the very last day of the weekend long Belize Chocolate Festival, we took a shuttle bus down the mile long path to the Lubaantun Maya Site in the Toledo District of Belize. Huge trees and greenery was pretty much all we were seeing until just before the ruins - this sign. We kept going (we were on a shuttle bus) but I made note to check this out on our exit… And I am certainly glad that we circled back because what I found was…well…shocking. Or at the very least very VERY surprising and actually really beautiful. An “Earthship” made of trash and cement that almost looks like a Moorish temple or a home in Morocco or Turkey. Unique for sure. Here’s the Earthship just feet away from Lubaantun, the 1400 or so year old Maya site. The entire base is stacked tires stuffed with styrofoam and crushed cans. It’s AMAZING. Here are some pictures from 2012 and a brief article about this Earthship and its builders. They are a type of home that was “invented” in the 1970s in the US…homes that collect water, use the sun, are built of trash and recyclables and as self sufficiently as possible. I was just struck by the beauty of this building, the artistry and the sheer amount of hands’ on effort it is taking this family and a small group of workers to plan and build it.

10 Reasons to Travel Sustainably
The holidays are over, you’re stressed out and the winter blues have set in. It’s time to get away. As you start to plan your vacation, do you consider how much good your trip could do for others? Some of the world’s most breathtaking destinations are now being managed sustainably, which means that in addition to benefiting your own mental health, your next trip could also benefit the environment and local communities. Here are 10 reasons to travel sustainably: 1. Make a Difference One of the world’s largest industries, tourism employs more than 235 million people and generates 9.2 percent of the global GDP. The choices made by travelers like you can enormously impact community-run businesses, local cultures and biodiversity. Your decisions will have consequences, for better or worse, so why not choose better. 2. Conserve Natural Environments When you follow designated trails, respect local rules about interacting with nature and pay entrance fees to parks and protected sites, you help conserve the beautiful environments that you’ve traveled all that way to visit.

Belize Investment Guide
Belize is offers extraordinary investments opportunities for the wise investor. Government and business leaders have forged innovative strategies aimed at accelerating its already impressive growth rate. Where traditional crops like sugar, citrus and bananas have long been the mainstay of the economy, this small Caribbean country in Central America is looking for new opportunities where its natural resources, work force and proximity to the world’s largest trading block in North America give it a natural competitive edge. This is a Third World country with attendant challenges. In keeping with our tradition at, we offer this investment guide along with unvarnished facts in stumbling blocks you may encounter on the ground.

International Sources

‘Mom’ medic ensures construction site safety during exercise in Central America
She gives 30 minute time-outs, ensures proper food and water intake, gives first-aid for cuts, scrapes and burns, and many people refer to her as “mom.” Senior Airman Janna Harina, an emergency medical technician deployed from the 4th Medical Operations Squadron, Seymour-Johnson Air Force Base, North Carolina, is in Belize providing medical care to engineers during the U.S. Southern Command-sponsored New Horizons exercise. She is the site medic at the Sadie Vernon Technical High School addition construction site project and is part of a the New Horizons task force that is building four different school additions in Belize City, Hattieville and one hospital addition in Belmopan, Belize. Safety is her main priority. For 12-14 hours per day, she watches Airmen, Marines and Soldiers to make sure they are wearing proper individual protective equipment and also keeps an eye out for signs and symptoms of heat related injuries such as drenched clothing, blank stares and dilated pupils.

Face of Defense: Air Force Doctor Finds Ways to Give Back
Deployed in support of New Horizons Belize 2014, a multifaceted exercise providing training opportunities for Belizean and U.S. medical professionals, Air Force Maj. (Dr.) Forrest Jellison is finding ways to give back. "I've always wanted to give back in some way, because I know I'm fortunate for what I have," the urologist said. "I believe you have to give back to be able to have something worthwhile." Following a number of family members into the military, Jellison said, he considered enlisting before deciding on a career path that would take him to places he never anticipated going in uniform. He graduation from Pacific Union College in Napa Valley, California, and followed his undergraduate education with medical school at Loma Linda University Medical Center in California, where he also completed his residency. Jellison then completed a urology fellowship at the University of California, Los Angeles. He was commissioned in 2001.

Where is the cheapest place to buy citizenship?
It is a cliche used from Bond to Bourne: the classic spy image of a suitcase filled with cash and multiple passports for a quick getaway. But increasingly it is not spies that are looking for a second passport, but a growing number of "economic citizens". Henley and Partners citizenship expert Christian Kalin, who helps to advise clients on the best place to spend their money, estimates that every year, several thousand people spend a collective $2bn (£1.2bn; 1.5bn euros) to add a second, or even third, passport to their collection. "I've seen more programmes fail than succeed," says Mr Kalin. "Belize passports became synonymous for illegal passports." The Belize programme was suspended in 2002.


Video: Georgia State University Belize Geosciences Exchange Presentations, 2014, 2hr14min.
Final presentations by students in the 2014 Belize Community GIS course at Georgia State University. Co-led by Dr. Timothy Hawthorne and Dr. Christy Visaggi.

Video: How To Prepare For Hurricane Season, 1.5min.
Long before a hurricane forms, there are things you can do to get ready if a storms heads your way.

Video: Dengue fever and the Aedes aegypti mosquito -- an Oxitec film, 5min.
What is Dengue Fever? Why are people and governments so worried about it? What's it got to do with mosquitoes, and how can we control it? Featuring never-before-seen footage and exclusive interviews with Haedes and Aegypta -- representatives of the notorious Dengue mosquito -- this film tackles some of the big questions about this dangerous virus, and what Oxitec can do to help.

Video: CFATF official says APNU amendments could hurt Guyana -- Debunk claims of Gov't fabricated deadlines, 18min.
A senior official of the Caribbean Financial Action Task Force (CFATF) says the proposed amendments by the opposition group, A Partnership for National Unity (APNU), to anti money and terrorism legislation could hurt Guyana.

Video: Zoom and pan of Hubble's colourful view of the Universe - YouTube, 1min.
Astronomers using the Hubble Space Telescope have captured the most comprehensive picture ever assembled of the evolving Universe — and one of the most colourful.

Video: Blue Hole 2014, 8min.

Video: Belize, 4min.
Highlights of our Belize journey

Video: Michele in Belize May 2014, 3min.
Belize again had lovely people and is the most affluent Central American country. British speaking and some great Caribbean beaches. It also boasts the 2nd largest coral reef after the Great Barrier Reef in Australia

Video: Cruising around Corozal Town, Corozal, Belize jammin' to some Reggae, 2min.
We be jammin', mon!

Video: Scuba diving belize pt 1, min.
Diving off the coast of San Pedro in Belize using Go Pro Hero 3 without red filter.

Video: Hawksbill Belize, 5min.
After diving the Blue Hole where 40 foot stalactites at 130 feet were nearly the only attraction, we dove at a cliff next to 2500 feet of Caribbean at the edge of the Lighthouse Reef Atoll. Amigos del Mar dive center in San Pedro, Ambergris Caye offers a great Blue Hole dive that includes one dive to 140 feet in the Blue Hole, then two dives along the ledge where the vertical drop from 60 feet to over 2400 feet.

Video: ORU mission to Belize, 6min.
Our team went to Oasis Ministry in Unitedville, Cayo, Belize. In first week our team went to do children's ministry at local schools and also built a house for a family in need. Second week we train some local leaders at Mt. Hope Bible Church to become a better leaders in Christ. Also did some local houses painting projects. We saw amazing things God has done in our teams and the people we reached. We have grown in spiritually, physically, and mentally as a team and as a individuals.

June 3, 2014


Click for our Daily Tropical Weather Report.

Specials and Events

Last night's TV news on Channel 7, Channel 5 and CTV 3
Also with the most recent Open Your Eyes, and the Dickie Bradley Specials

The San Pedro Sun

Belizean Kent Bob Gabourel competes in two international triathlon events
Kent Bob Gabourel, the Belizean Triathlete that is expected to represent the country at the 2014 Commonwealth Games, continues his training at two international events. On Saturday May 24th, Gabourel represented Belize in an international triathlon competition in Mexico organized by the Pan American Triathlon Confederation (PACTO) and is now preparing for a second event in the United States of America (USA). According to Gabourel, with some help from the Belize Olympics Committee, he was able to attend 2014 PATCO Sprint Triathlon Pan American Cup in Ixtapa, Zihuatanejo, Mexico. He participated amongst 2,000 participants from Japan, Australia, Italy, Brazil, Uruguay and Costa Rica, in various categories. Gabourel was able to complete 750 meters of swimming, 20 kilometers of biking and 10 kilometers of running. The only Belizean participant was able to finish in 30th place in the Elite Category, crossing the finish line at one hour, 14 minutes and eight seconds. “It was a great experience to compete with professional triathletes. It is very competitive, but for me I’m not on par with them, so I have to put in much more extra work. This is my first international event and I finished in decent time, so I am happy,” said Gabourel. The first place winner, Mexican Eder Mejia, finished in 57 minutes and eight seconds.

Public asked to be mindful of Turtle Nesting Season
The 2014 Turtle Nesting Season has officially commenced, and biologists at the Ambergris Caye Marine Turtle Program have already recorded two nests at Robles Point. The nests were found on Tuesday, May 20th during a check of the beach and are the first nests observed for the season. 10362378_645564755517436_1340382775771597586_nThe season runs from the months of May to November, with sea turtles nesting particularly in the Robles Point, Rocky Point and Basil Jones Area. There are three species of turtles who nest on Ambergris Caye: the Loggerhead turtle (ChleoniaCaretta), the Green turtle (ChleoniaMydas) and the Hawksbill turtle (Eretmochelys imbricate). Mature female turtles usually return to nest in the same areas that they were hatched and continue to nest in that area for the remainder of their life span. One single female turtle can lay from 70 to 190 eggs, depending on the species, and they take between six to ten weeks to hatch.

Health support tuk-tuks on the island but still not in use
On April 14th, 26 small three-wheeled motorcycle-type mobiles, widely referred to as Tuk-Tuk (motorized rickshaws) were donated by Dubai, United Arab Emirates to the Government of Belize. Three of the tuk-tuks were sent to Ambergris Caye to be used at the Dr Otto Rodriguez San Pedro PolyClinic II. They have has been on the island for over a month, but the tuk-tuks have still not been put to use. The health facility officials told The San Pedro Sun on May 28th that none of the three mobiles have reached the hands of the administration of the island’s public health facility. Administrator of the PolyClinic Owen Vellos confirmed to The San Pedro Sun that while he has been notified of the donation and has even seen them on the island, they have not been formally handed over to the clinic. Vellos explained that it was recommended that the three tuk-tuks be given an oil bath before they are commissioned for use, but that has been over a month ago. Since then, the tuk-tuks have been sitting at the San Pedro Town Council barracks.

Bowen & Bowen debuts Galaxy Beer in honor of Courtney Bowen’s Wedding
Courtney Walker Bowen exchanged vows with her beloved Peter Tully on May 24th in San Pedro Town, in front of friends and family, and it certainly was an occasion to celebrate. Daughter of Lady Dixie and the late Sir Barry of Bowen & Bowen fame, Courtney’s nuptials went beyond the exchange of vows, as the nation joined in toasting the bride and groom with a specially crafted beer named Galaxy Beer. Belize Brewing Company utilized Sir Barry’s favorite hops, an Australian strain called Galaxy to create a special brew with the same name: Galaxy. For the rest of the town, a release party was held on the same evening at the Louis Sylvestre Football Field, with the brew going at a special price of just two for $5. The San Pedro Sun made sure to pick up a few bottles of the beer to toast the lovely Courtney and her handsome husband Peter!

Ambergris Today

ADO Bus Company Says Belize Route Proving Successful
Three years into the service, Mexico-based ADO Bus Company is reporting moderate success of its Belize – Cancun and Belize – Merida routes. ADO stated that the Belize – Cancun route occupancy rate is up to 60% indicating that the service is being well received by its customers. ADO’s Manager in Chetumal, Luis Perez Leon, stated that the service numbers are so encouraging that ADO executives are planning to add more routes to Belize but it all depends on whether or not the permits are granted by the Government of Belize. This international route is proving a success, since it has been providing comfortable and convenient connection for Belizeans residing in Quintana Roo and Belizeans wanting to travel to Mexico as well as increasing the Mexican tourism to Belize and Central America.

Recycled Tires Make for Awesome Garden Art at Ladybug
Passed by Ladybug garden supply and nursery this weekend and could not help but do a double take at the awesome garden art/pottery they have on display. They have on sale beautiful plant holders made out of old recycled tires. What a great way of recycling products that don't degrade and are bad for the environment. Taking a closer look at the plant holders, you can see how imaginative the people who make them are. They are all images of birds found in Belize (minus the swans Laughing). Pretty cool!!!

Sheila Chi Crowned Miss San Pedro High Over Weekend
Ms. Sheila Chi was crowned Miss San Pedro High School 2014 over the weekend at the pageant that took place at the R. Angel Nuñez Auditorium on Saturday, May 31. Sheila also won the title of Miss Popularity and Miss Photogenic; First Runner-Up was Ms. Marisha Thompson.

Honeymooners Discover Belize through Instagram
Our beautiful jewel Belize has been attracting many love birds from all over the world. Our country is the perfect getaway for you to get engaged, married or spend an unforgettable honeymoon. I was contacted through Instagram by an amazing couple from Tempe, Arizona who was spending their honeymoon in Ambergris Caye, Belize. I met up with Michael and Stefanie Fasciocco at Caramba Restaurant where we got the chance to know each other a little bit more. During the night of great food, drinks and laughter, I asked them to elaborate on their decision to spend their honeymoon in Belize. The honeymooners stayed at X’tan Ha “The Waterfront” Resort where the fun kicked off with a tour to Hol Chan and Shark Ray Alley; snorkeling alongside the second largest Barrier Reef in the world. They also enjoyed their walk around San Pedro Town and stopped by at Elvi’s Kitchen for some delicious food. Other places they also enjoyed were dinner at Mambo Restaurant inside Mata Chica Resort and dancing the night away at Wet Willy’s.

Misc Belizean Sources

Nominations are invited from suitable qualified candidates wishing to pursue post-graduate programmes in New Zealand commencing in February 2015. The award is being offered for PhD and Masters level study in New Zealand. ELIGIBILITY: *Candidates must be Citizens of Belize *Candidates must be residing in Belize at least two(2) years prior to application *Candidates must be applying to commence a new qualification and not seeking funding for one already commenced *Candidates should hold a first degree of upper second class honors level or above or a second class degree and a relevant postgraduate qualification. *Candidates should be able to take up their awards by the start of the New Zealand academic year in February 2015

Deployed electrician plans on pursuing nursing degree, joining Reserves
You could say that he started training for his current job at just 12 years old when his father gave him his first set of tools. “My dad built a toolkit for me and I still have it,” said Senior Airman Kevin Barnett, a plumber from the 820th RED HORSE Squadron, Nellis Air Force Base, Nevada, who is currently deployed to Belize City, Belize, in support of the U.S. Southern Command-sponsored New Horizons exercise. The Santa Paula, California, native has been in the Air Force for four years. His dad, a former electrician in the Navy, helped him choose an Air Force job. “I chose to be a plumber because I wanted something that I could fall back on if I ever decided to get out,” he said. Previously stationed in a civil engineer squadron in Germany, Barnett says that the “tempo is so much faster with RED HORSE because it’s all new construction versus maintenance.”

US Air Force doctor finds ways to 'give back'
Deployed in support of New Horizons Belize 2014, a multi-faceted exercise providing training opportunities for Belizean and U.S. medical professionals, U.S. Air Force Maj. (Dr.) Forrest Jellison is finding ways to give back. "I've always wanted to give back in some way because I know I'm fortunate for what I have," said the urologist. "I believe you have to give back to be able to have something worthwhile." Following a number of family members into the military, Jellison considered enlisting in the military before decided on a career path that would take him to places he never anticipated going in uniform. He graduation from Pacific Union College in Napa Valley, Calif., and followed his undergraduate education with medical school at Loma Linda University Medical Center in California where he also completed his residency. Jellison then completed a urology fellowship at the University of California, Los Angeles. He commissioned in 2001, officially kicking off his career in the Air Force.

By Abdulmajeed K Nunez After one hundred and fifty years of experimentation America has finally perfected their weapon of mass destruction After slavery was abolished they did not know what to do with the black population Some 40 million, so they developed of plan of extermination Their fears were retaliation and retribution Following Francis Goltin they came up with the Eugenics solution Turning the white against the black population Congress funded this colonization They tried again with our brothers in Vietnam Eugene Fisher came up with sterilization Starting with countries controlled by the Germans Funded by the Carnage Corporation and Rockefeller Foundation When that did not work, they put chemical in the food and the water They solicited Nixon to get help to influence legislation When that did not work they took it to the United Nations So they do not have to dirty their hands Planned parenthood became their new standard of operation

Join in on the Global Summit to End Sexual Violence in Conflict
Visit the British High Commission, Belmopan for updates on the campaign. From early morning on Tuesday 10 June there will be a global relay of events taking place around the world - 84 hours of action to highlight the fight against sexual violence in conflict. #TimeToAct The global event relay will be key part of the Global Summit to End Sexual Violence in Conflict, which is taking place in London from 10 – 13 June. The Summit Fringe in London is open to the public from 10-12 June. Events are free and the full programme is available here:

Belize Zoo Conservation Camp 2014
The Zoo is getting ready to host Conservation Camp 2014! Students ages 12-17 are invited to join the Zoo's education team for a week of activities geared toward gaining knowledge and appreciation of our natural world. Night walks, canoeing, wildlife studies, acting, and forest hikes are just some of the many exciting activities planned this year. Camp runs from June 30th to July 4th. Facebook message us, call the Zoo at (501)-822-8000, or email [email protected] for more information. There are only 25 spaces left, so hop to it!

YWCA Belmopan Summer Programme
14 July through 8 August

Solar energy system project to be installed at UB’s Living Reef Center (LRC) at Hunting Caye
The University of Belize (UB) along with one of its partner institutions [from Consortium for Belize Educational Cooperation (COBEC)] , Madison Area Technical College (MATC) from Madison, Wisconsin, USA is collaborating on a small but expandable solar energy system project to be installed at UB’s Living Reef Center (LRC) at Hunting Caye, Toledo District. Joel Shoemaker, Renewable Energy and Electrical Apprenticeship Professor at Madison and his students were on a working trip—Wednesday, 28th May through Saturday, 31st May, 2014—at the Caye where they are installing the system. Chris Miller from Heartland Community College in Normal, Illinois and Sarah Hawkins from Lakeshore Technical College in Sheboygan, Wisconsin also accompanied the team. This specific solar, renewable energy project is a part of an annual upgrading/expansion and maintenance of the system by MATC through its Study Abroad Program. It also serves as a demonstration of the University of Belize’s continued commitment to clean energy, environmental and conservation education and the potential of international and national collaborations to produce tangible benefits. For this initiative, MATC is donating the solar panels, converters and other requisite electrical parts; UB is facilitating and coordinating this portion of MATC’s 2014 Belize Tour and Belize Natural Energy Ltd. (BNE)—as a local partner and co-sponsor—is funding the cost of batteries, wiring and other miscellaneous materials necessary to install the system.

Spearhead has ARRIVED!!!!
Military Sealift Command joint high-speed vessel, USNS Spearhead, arrived at the Port of Big Creek yesterday morning. Spearhead’s arrival in Big Creek marks the beginning of the United States’ Southern Partnership Station program in Belize. The Southern Partnership Station program is a U.S. Navy deployment focused on subject matter expert exchanges with partner nation militaries and security forces. During the visit, the ship will meet with Belizean counterparts to discuss and assist with local issues such as port security, professional development, operational risk management, medical readiness, outboard motor maintenance, and patrol craft operations, among other things. During the visit, personnel onboard the ship look forward to experiencing the rich culture of Belize, and serving as goodwill ambassadors; working with communities in Punta Gorda, Belize City, and Ladyville on various community projects.

A hundred (100) garbage containers were donated to the town of San Pedro by an anonymous donor.
he San Pedro Town Council had them painted in vibrant and attractive colors and each reading with the slogan "Keep La Isla Bonita Clean" to promote awareness on having a cleaner San Pedro. These containers will be distributed at the parks, along Boca del Rio Drive and other designated locations. We hope everyone makes good use of these containers and take proper care of them. Let's all help KEEP LA ISLA BONITA CLEAN!

NICH with support of the Republic of China (Taiwan) to launch Primary School Art Skills Training Project
The Embassy of the Republic of China (Taiwan) today presented a check to the President of the National Institute of Culture and History (NICH), Diane C. Haylock. The donation is to support an initiative for the implementation of a Primary Schools Art Skills Training Pilot Project (PSAST). The pilot project is to offer training in art skills to a select number of primary school students from various schools in Belize City and is to run for an initial period of six (6) months from July through December 2014. The PSAST Project is a venture in addressing the critical need to increase the accessibility and affordability of creative arts programs for the children of Belize. The overall objective of the program is to provide opportunities for approximately 50 students in Belize City primary schools to increase their abilities to express themselves creatively through training in a structured art and craft programme.

All you need to do is click on the photo contest tab below ( located underneath the cover photo), follow the rules and guidelines and submit your photo! There is still time! Make your submission and enter our photo contest. You might get lucky and win a free vacation! Just click the link below to enter:

SPEARHEAD has arrived !!!!!
Military Sealift Command joint high-speed vessel, USNS Spearhead, arrived at the Port of Big Creek yesterday morning. Spearhead’s arrival in Big Creek marks the beginning of the United States’ Southern Partnership Station program in Belize. The Southern Partnership Station program is a U.S. Navy deployment focused on subject matter expert exchanges with partner nation militaries and security forces. During the visit, the ship will meet with Belizean counterparts to discuss and assist with local issues such as port security, professional development, operational risk management, medical readiness, outboard motor maintenance, and patrol craft operations, among other things. During the visit, personnel onboard the ship look forward to experiencing the rich culture of Belize, and serving as goodwill ambassadors; working with communities in Punta Gorda, Belize City, and Ladyville on various community projects.

May 25 - May 31 2014 Fishing Report
Wow. I can speak for all of the people who work here at El Pescador and say a big Thank You! We were so happy to see Dr. Marc bring his family to El Pescador after just being here last month! Dave and Donna – we love you guys. Rob is family and Donn we hope you become a neighbor! Roy and Wade – thanks for showing Lawrence what goes on here. Mike and Sue, I know Erlindo is thrilled to see you two! Cindy and Roy were here and it was hard to say goodbye. So until next time! And thanks for all the volleyball game support. And here we are, the first of June! Looks like an action packed month for us as we are sold out for several weeks! If you are reading this and looking forward to your trip, practice that cast! Even 5 minutes here and there really makes a difference. I’m saying this because when you look at that giant tarpon chasing your fly, you won’t be calm. And a big heartfelt thank you to the guides we work with. This guide team has grown so much over the past few years. They show up every morning knowing their anglers are so excited to make their dreams happen. And the El Pescador guide team does just that – make it happen! And as we say here in Belize, “Why not?”

Channel 7

Dangerous san Juan Area of San Pedro Spikes Up Again
Since March, we’ve been reporting on a spike in violent crime on San Pedro – which has resulted in three murders, and multiple shootings and stabbings. The third murder since March happened on Saturday morning in the troubled San Juan area of San Pedro Town when 49 year old Corozaleno Alfred “Cat” Kelvin was killed. His death comes as a shock to his family who did not even know he was in the country! Daniel Ortiz found out more today:.. Supt. Luis Castellanos – OC, San Pedro Police "On Saturday the 31st of May at 2:05 in the morning we received information of a shooting in the San Juan area. As a result of the information received police visited Sea Weed Street situated in San Juan area where they saw the lifeless body of a individual we know as Alfred Kelvin, 49 years old Belizean unemployed of the San Juan area. He was seen suffering from one single gunshot wound to the right eye which exited on the right side of his head. He was apparently dead on the spot."

The Master of Coin Settles His Debt With Denys B.
Last week Wednesday, Burrell Boom resident Trevor Vernon got a stern come uppance when the court bailiff showed up at his house to start marking items which the court would claim to settle his debt to Denys Barrow. That arose from a Supreme Court case which Vernon lost, where he alleged that Castro violated the Cabinet code of conduct. Denys Barrow was Castro’s attorney – and so Vernon had to pay his five thousand dollar cost.

Borland Family Wants West Charged For Murder
Giovanni Borland was viciously chopped in the head on May 11th in Libertad Village. He died 19 days alter on Friday May 30th. For the family who prayed that he would somehow recover from a massive brain injury, it is a terrible, drawn out end to one night of drinking that turned deadly. Joseph West told police that while socializing at a village bar, he and Borland got into an argument. He claims he tried to leave but Borland followed him with a machete. It ended when West chopped Borland in his head. But according to Borland family, he had no machete and it was not only Joseph West involved it the incident. They claimed Borland was attacked by 5 men – all related.

Discarded Fetus Found Inside KHMH; Hospital Has No Answers
The KHMH is not commenting on an ugly discovery made at the hospital on Friday night. Around 8:00, a female patient who was in the observation room of the Accident and Emergency area picked up a foul odor coming from under her bed. She alerted the nurses who were aghast to find a decomposing fetus in a small white box under the bed. How did it get there? Well, that’s the question the hospital won’t answer; in fact it won’t even entertain questions. They referred us to police who told us the hospital is doing its own internal investigation. Discarding of a fetus is a criminal offence – and police hope to know more when a post mortem is conducted.

No One Hurt In City Shooting/Armed Robbery
At 7:15 on Saturday night shots were fired in an apparent robbery attempt at First Choice Pharmacy on Cemetery Road. Police have not released details but we did see three expended shells on the scene as well as two bicycles abandoned by the robbers. No one was hurt, and police did not say if the robbers got off with any money.

Missing Pellets Puzzle Police In Elston Arnold Shooting Case
On Thursday, we spoke with the Deputy Commanding Officer of San Pedro Police, Inspector Reymundo Reyes. He said that police were investigating the officers who were suspected of shooting 19 year old Elston Arnold and leaving him for dead on the side of the road. Well, there are reports tonight that police have hit a major snag. Arnold’s family tells us that the investigator hasn’t managed to get the shotgun pellets which were taken out of the wounds. The intention was to retrieve these pellets and send them along with the firearms from the police officers to the National Forensic Sciences service for ballistics testing. Today Inspector Reyes told us that as far as he knew, the investigator wasn’t able to get the pellets from the hospital because the nurse who had secured them under lock and key was on holiday at that time. Reyes assured us that the police will make exhaustive attempts to retrieve those pellets to send for testing.

Reyes vs. Rosado Again, But This Time a Man's Life Hangs In the Balance
Tonight 23 year old Vitalino Reyes Jr is completing four days in a coma. He fell into it last week Thursday night – allegedly after he was beaten up at the Long Island Bar on Dolphin Drive in Belize City. And this is where it gets complicated. Vitalino is the son of Vitalino Sr. who is the owner of – the well known business rival of Yohnny Rosado’s Reyes Jr.’s friend and co worker is another Yoney, Yoney Vega. He reported to police that Yohnny Rosado and his crew were in the same bar at the same time – and he and Vitalino Jr were trying to leave when Yohnny sent his employee to block them, and then to viciously beat them unconscious. Rosado admits he was there but disputes that story – and he held a press conference with his new attorney Audrey Matura Shepherd to do so today. Tonight, we have both sides of the story, but we begin with an update on Vitalino Jr:…

Gentle Back Behind Bars
26 year-old Mark Gentle, who was able to beat criminal charges a year ago for a high-profile witness tampering allegation, is back behind bars because police say that he shot a man 3 weeks ago. Police say that on Monday May 12, Radman Welch was shot by a gunman, and after investigating, they charged Gentle with use of deadly means of harm and wounding. He was arraigned today before the Chief Magistrate who remanded him to prison. In January, Gentle and his mother managed to beat a charge of attempting to suppress evidence, after they were accused of trying to bribe and then threatening a prosecution witness. The suspicion was that they were doing it to try to get Jermaine “Horse” Garnett and Cassian Bennett to get off a murder charge. The Chief Magistrate dismissed the charges against them for lack of evidence.

Another Protest For Prof Bain
This weekend, the Belize Evangelical Association of Churches and Belize Action kept their pressure up on the University of the West Indies for the termination of Professor Brendon Bain.

Weed In the "Jungle"
The Quick Response Team from precinct 3 made a sizeable weed bust on Friday night. It happened in the jungle area of the Pickstock Hutment where they searched an abandoned lot and found eight plastic bags weighing in at 3.3 kilos, over 7 pounds. No one was in the area so the drugs were labelled as found property. Police believe it is the stash for a well known drug kingpin in the area.

Resort Owner Says 16 Year Old daughter Ran Away With BF
Cayo Resort owner, 57-year-old Mike Bogaert, has reported to police that his 16 year old daughter has run away. He got a call on Saturday afternoon telling him that his 16-year-old daughter Eden Bogaert, ran away from home and took her Canadian Passport. Bogaert went to her boyfriend Kevin Palma’s house where the young man’s mother informed him that she found a note informing her that he left along with Eden and also had his passport. Bogaert told police that Palma is in possession of his father’s Dodge Ram pick-up so he believes they want to leave the country. Eden Bogaert is of Hispanic descent, about 5ft. tall, and weighs 105pounds.

USS Navy Ship Lands in Belize
Yesterday morning, the United States Naval Ship Spearhead arrived at the Port of Big Creek in the Toledo District. The navy’s presence in Belize marks the beginning of the US Southern Partnership Program in Belize. This program is a US Navy Deployment which will focus on cooperation between the military of both nations in the area of port security, professional development, operational risk management, medical readiness, outboard motor maintenance, patrol craft operations, and other areas. Our colleagues from PGTV spoke with the US Navy’s Mission Commander on-board the Spearhead, he told them that a part the program will be infrastructure where 100 members of the US Navy will set up camp alongside the BDF Base Punta Gorda. They’ll be assisting on works on the barrack facilities. There are also medical personnel among the US Navy which will go out to the different communities in PG and in Ladyville to provide assistance to the local clinics. The Navy contingent stays in Belize until the end of July, but the Spearhead will return to open waters.

Who's The Strongest Man
On Saturday, the Belize Body Building & Fitness Federation held its annual strongman competition at the Riverside Tavern parking lot in Belize City. It’s a competition where the contestants show off several feats of power, and after all the scores were tallied, 2012 champion Victor Valencia became the winner. Here’s what he had to say about the event: Valencia took home first prize of $600.

Going The Distance With 20k Strong: Kim Barrow Marks The Milestone
The photography exhibit called “Milestone” was launched on Friday night at the House of Culture in Belize City. It’s the work of Artist, Briheda Haylock – and it captures unguarded moments of 12 trailblazing Belizean women. Kim Barrow explained how the exhibit follows up on the 20,000 Strong rally. Kim Barrow "For us to honor these woman its really important because a lot of times many women in our society they really do go un-notice and the work that they do we believe should be highlighted and hence this exhibit that you all will be seeing. Now this as Ann Marie said is one of the offspring on twenty thousand strong. I know that much has been said in the media and in other places, but we will continue to build on the twenty thousand strong and to showcase women and empower women - that’s the only agenda behind the twenty thousand strong and this is really evidence of it." The exhibit, supported by the office of the Special Envoy for Women and Children, will be available for viewing for the next 2 weeks.

The G Collective, Belize's Music Ambassadors
On Friday we closed the news with a clip of the Garifuna Collective live in Wurzburg Germany. They were featured at the Africa Festival 2014. As a part of the festival’s extensive media packaging, they were also featured in a sit down interview. Here’s what these unlikely but quite competent cultural ambassadors told the Festival organizers about Belizean culture. The Collective played Berlin on Saturday night.

Making Many Mangroves
When we hear about Mangroves in the news – it’s usually about cutting them down to make way for development. But on Friday in Placencia, they were planting mangroves. More than forty volunteers gathered in the Crimson Development community area of Placencia Village to participate in a mangrove planting activity organized in memory of environmentalist Adrian Vernon. Approximately four hundred seedlings were planted by members of the Vernon family, the World Wildlife Fund, the Southern Environmental Association, Oceana, the Placencia Village Council, Placencia Citizens for Sustainable Development, the Placencia Fishermen’s Cooperative, Friends of the Placencia Lagoon and the Coco Plum Resort and Residential Development. The mangroves now line the canal adjacent to the Placencia airstrip and will serve as a buffer for the residential plots of the Crimson Development community area.

Channel 5

Decaying fetus found under a bed inside the K.H.M.H.
There have been all sorts of scandalous allegations of wrongdoings made against the Karl Heusner Memorial Hospital, but tonight there is a troubling report that has been confirmed by the [...]

San Pedro resident murdered over the weekend
As recent as last week the San Pedro community came together to fight an alarming spike in crime and violence in the island. On Saturday, the news spread early in [...]

Libertad resident who was hacked on the head perishes
Thirty-four year old Giovanni Borland died on Friday, three weeks after he was viciously chopped to the head on May eleventh in Libertad Village, Corozal.  Police detained twenty-four year old [...]

Yhony Rosado refutes allegations of being involved in assault of Vitalino Reyes Jr.
Tour operator Vitalino Reyes Junior is still comatose at the Karl Heusner Memorial Hospital. Reyes Junior was assaulted last week Thursday during a confrontation at a bar; he was beaten [...]

Trevor Vernon pays up….is it in shillings?
Last Tuesday, Trevor Vernon, the unsuccessful claimant in a private case brought against Minister of State Edmond Castro, made the flamboyant gesture of paying fifty percent of costs, twenty-five hundred [...]

The choice words of Arthur Saldivar for Rodwell Williams
Belize Rural North Area Representative Arthur Saldivar has his own financial cross to bear. On May twenty-third, the Supreme Court ruled against him in a defamation suit brought by Prime [...]

Jorge Espat resigns as President of SJC
After a two-year period as president of St. John’s College, News Five has confirmed that Jorge Espat is demitting office.  Word of his resignation circulated around campus late last week [...]

Still no resolution on the appointment of Danini Contreras as the first Director of Drug Inspectorate
This week is celebrated as Pharmacy Week, a joint initiative of the Government of Belize and the private sector. We’ll have more on that later, but first the issue which [...]

Cancer Walk 2014
Every year, thousands of Belizeans walk from Ladyville to Belize City to raise awareness and fight cancer. On Saturday morning, bright and early, young and old, men and women as [...]

2nd protest against termination of UWI professor is held at Battlefield Park
A small protest was held on Saturday morning in Belize City in solidarity with Doctor Brendan Bain, who was recently terminated from the CHART program at the University of the [...]

Jerson Grinage charged for 3.5 ounces of weed
Mahogany Heights resident Jerson Grinage, was today arraigned for drug trafficking after he was allegedly busted with three point five ounces of weed in his garage. The twenty-two year old [...]

Pharmacy Week 2014; creating awareness on the role of pharmacists
As we told you earlier, Pharmacy Week is being celebrated this week, and the provision of quality health care is a focus. It’s mainly about creating awareness of pharmacists and [...]

Citizens on Patrol in San Pedro
There have been three murders in San Pedro this year. The murder of Alfred Kelvin Junior makes four. Compared to Belize City that may not seem like much but on [...]

U.S. Navy in Belize for Southern Partnership Station program
A United States naval vessel is presently in Belizean waters, where personnel onboard are on a working visit to the Belize.  USNS Spearhead, a Military Sealift Command watercraft, docked at [...]

Sports Monday with Kaya Cattouse
Good evening Belize, with this week’s edition of Sport Monday, I’m Kaya Cattouse and I’ll be the face of Sports Monday for the next six weeks.   Let’s get right [...]


O/W Observes Pharmacist Week
It is pharmacy week and a few of the pharmacies in Orange Walk Town are observing the week with special promotions and discounts to their clientele. To find out more about the week, our news team spoke with Alejandro Lopez, a senior pharmacist. Alejandro Lopez – Pharmacist “Pharmacy week is about bringing awareness and at the same time educating the general public with regards on how to go about taking medications, what are the possible side effects, and in this way we can interact more with our patients because the general community believes that the pharmacist is only to count and dispense medication that we have moved away from that actually we now as pharmacist have more interaction with the community, we are here to advice, to counsel, and at the same time to educate the general public with regards on how to go about taking your medication, how often and how serious side effects are etcetera.” Pharmacies are also a business, but there is something about it that sets it apart from the typical business establishments within the communities says Lopez.

Missionaries To Assist Rural Communities
Missionaries were finishing their last endeavors over the weekend as part of their annual visits to Belize. We are talking about volunteers of the Thirst Mission which provides volunteers from North America to come to Belize to serve on short term mission teams. Once here, the missionaries partner with host churches across the country and spend up to ten days conducting a series of community oriented projects. These include bible schools, sports outreach, construction at churches and schools and medical and dental ministries. Jason Phingsten has been leading teams on an annual basis for at least twenty-five years. Jason Phingsten – Group Leader “We have a pastor training and so we have Pastors from around the countries that are here to learn more about hosting a team, what our expectations are for them, and our staff here as well we just got back from four days of training on Caye Caulker too, spend time in the bible and learning about the bible, going through our manuals and our policies just to figure out the best way to provide a great short term mission’s experience for these teams from around North America; they come from Baptist Churches, Presbyterians, and Methodist all different nominations from all different states and even from Canada and they come to serve for a week and their lives have changes when they come down to serve, there is something about getting outside their culture and something about getting outside what they are used to and then coming down and then giving themselves and so many times in the United States run from that people are spoiled and they don’t know how good they have it until they come down and they don’t have air conditioning and see Pastors are working other full time jobs and don’t get paid much by their church and the condition of the church is and the needs of the people down here and they are changed when they go back to the United States and so just a blessing of being a part of bringing people down here and trying to provide great mission experienced for them.”

Morelia Pop Wins La Voz Karaoke Competition
The stage was extravagantly set for the grand finale of La Voz Karaoke on Friday night. This was the culmination of the 13 week competition that saw as many as 20 singers hailing from Corozal and Orange Walk Town vie for the title of Karaoke champion in the north. The competition attracted a healthy selection of singers who sang their hearts out on stage. In the end, there was only room for one at the top of the karaoke chain to reign. Our news team was there and brings you the highlights of Friday’s big event that drew hundreds of fans and supporters out. Carmelita Perez – Reporting Singing sensation, Morelia Pop sang to the hearts of many and emerged as victor in the 13 week long La Voz Karaoke competition hosted by Centaur Communications Corporations Limited. In Friday’s finale inside a family packed Butchys Lounge, the show got off to a roaring start with presentations from Gabriel’s Magix’s. And then the five finalists faced off one last time performing their songs of choice. Of course, before the night was over, the three judges for the 13 weeks of show also proved to the audience that they have singing skills.

Corozal Activates NEMO
The Corozal National Emergency Management Organization “NEMO” has shifted into full gear as the Hurricane Season got underway. This year forecasters are predicting what is being deemed as quite hurricane season. However, one never knows what Mother Nature has in store for us. And for that NEMO Corozal is not bringing down its guard. Willard Levy - Corozal NEMO. “Every year we do a shelter inspection, this year we did not an intensive inspection but we had a good picture of what the position of the shelters, we found that we had a few of them doing repairs to and this is undergoing at this point, we have not completely finished with the repairs and we expect them to finished them between now and the next no later than two weeks. And in the case of what NEMO had done in Corozal actually is trying to get out the message the season is out, we will be doing regular talk shows over the radio advising people to get ready, to be prepared hurricane season is near and even though we may have heard that this hurricane season is not so as active as the previous forecasted years, my message to the people is that it only takes one storm to create a disaster so we don’t really have to have an active season to have a disaster, we need people to be on their guard, start to get ready, prepare themselves and do the necessary things, make your family plans, if you are going to evacuate know where you are going, and do it quick.”


PM Talks Finance and Sustainability with IADB in Washington
Prime Minister departed Belize last week and is scheduled to return home tomorrow. Love News understands that part of his time away was spent in Washington, USA meeting with officials from the Inter-American Development Bank (IADB), primarily, the Bank’s President, Luis Alberto Moreno. In a release issued by the bank, the meeting was held to discuss Belize’s relationship with the bank and priority areas of collaboration. Also on the discussion table was the bank’s newly approved country strategy with Belize which will be a main focus for IDB and their works in Belize over the next four years. This strategy seeks to support Belize’s Government with the aim of improving public expenditure efficiency and effectiveness while promoting private sector development and sustainable export-led growth with concentration on education, tourism and agriculture. The meeting also involved discussions on the recent developments in Belize, particularly in the tourism and agriculture sectors as well as IDB’s lending program with Belize for 2014.

Police Inspector’s Son Escapes Prison Time
Jerson Grinage, the son of Inspector Alford Grinage, almost became an inmate of Belize Central Prison when he appeared today before Senior Magistrate Sharon Fraser to be arraigned on a charge of aggravated assault with a firearm, an offence which the magistrate court cannot offer bail until after 3 months. The complainant, Yannick Smith, who had made a false report, came to court and said that he don’t want any further court action….but before Senior Magistrate Fraser allowed the charge to be withdrawn, she found out that that Grinage did not approach Smith with a firearm and that it was Grinage who was pursued by two persons; one of them armed with what appeared to be a 16 gauge shotgun. She scolded Smith about the false report and told him that she was contemplating having the police charge him with a mischievous act but she had a change of heart and Smith was allowed to go free. But Grinage was not completely free as the police reported that when they went to Grinage’s yard they searched it and found 101 grams of cannabis among the garbage. As a result, Grinage was charged with drug trafficking. He pled not guilty to the charge when he appeared before the Chief Magistrate Anne Marie Smith and he was released on a bail of $1,000. His next court date is July 31. The incident occurred on May 30, 2014.

Ozzie Wants to Bring More Clowns To Town
Ozzy the Clown, he is the beloved children entertainer that has travelled throughout Belize putting smiles on children faces. Ozzy the Clown wants to bring a group of clowns from Mexico City to Belize where they will entertain the children of Belize. While the clowns are not charging, Ozzy the Clown, says that an endeavor of this magnitude consists of logistic that are costly and Ozzy needs your help to make it a reality. OZZIE THE CLOWN “Basically the plan is to get 20 clowns into Belize City from Mexico City. Coming into Belize City we want to have a huge parade all through the streets of Belize City and if we choose certain streets and there is a school that is around, we will probably stop in that school just to give a little quick motivational action and then slip out and continue operate through the streets of Belize City. Nothing ever has been done like this before, it’s something that everybody will be holding their heads and saying what’s going on? It is amazing once you see it. It has been done in Mexico City; it has been done all over the world especially when there is a troop of clowns. So that is the first step. The second step is to have a huge show at the BTL Park; free of cost, anybody can go.

Rumor of Cracked Water Dam Circulates
About twenty one miles south of San Ignacio Town in the Cayo District, sits a gravity dam on the Macal River, dubbed the Chalillo Dam. The dam, which was built between the years, 2002 and 2005, is an upstream storage facility meaning that its main purpose is to store waters during the rainy season…..but like everything manmade, things can go wrong and so, for the last two weeks the Belize Electric Company Limited (BECOL) has been conducting a public awareness campaign geared at educating the public on the emergency plan that is in place in the event of a dam break or a massive flood. This past Saturday formed part of that campaign as explained to us by the Vice President of Operations at BECOL, Stephen Usher. STEPHEN USHER, VP of Operations “Public awareness is a part of the environmental compliance plan that we have with the Department of Environment. A part of that ECP is the Emergency Preparedness Plan which is basically a plan to advise stakeholders along the Macal River of an event of a dam break if that arises. What you do; the safe zones you go to and the necessary preparedness you do in the event that should occur. What we do on an annual basis is we go out to all the stakeholders along the Macal River which includes the resorts, San Ignacio/Santa Elena Towns; some of the villages up the Mopan River which would be in the inundation area if we should have a dam break during a flood. We go out to these villages and schools and we explain how the project operates and how high the water would go in the event of a massive flood or a dam break and we advise the public where the safe zones would be in their area.

Borland Succumbs 19 Days Later
Nineteen days after being involved in an altercation in northern Belize, a young resident of Libertad Village, Corozal District has succumbed to machete wounds he received in the incident. On Sunday, May 11, Corozal police had responded to complaints of a fight in the village around 10pm when they found out that Giovanni Borland was seriously injured and taken to the hospital for medical treatment. Borland was later transferred to the Karl Heusner Memorial Hospital where he passed away on Friday, May 30. He had received severe injuries to the head that were reportedly inflicted with a machete during the fight. According to the uncle, Karl Borland, since the incident Giovanni never regained consciousness to tell his story. KARL BORLAND “Let me give you a run down as to what really happened and this is actually his version of what actually took place; sadly he is deceased now but what we were made to understand is that he went to Libertad Village on Saturday, I think; he went there to get his passport, he had left his passport at a house in Libertad Village. The following day, on Sunday around 11:30pm he was socializing at a club in Libertad Village and he got into an altercation with five people and all of them are of a family in the village.

Coye Family vs Income Tax Department for Over $3M
On Friday we told you of the judgment handed down by Justice Sonya Young to unfreeze the Coye’s assets. Justice Young lifted the injunction placed on the Coye’s 1.557 million dollars and declared that Melanie Coye and her family get their monies back. While that was a big win for the Coye Family, they now have to go up against the Income Tax Department which had collected about 3.21 million dollars in arrears from them. Commissioner of Income Tax, Kent Clare, confirmed that the Income Tax Department has the monies but he says they have received no correspondence from the Coye Family stating they will fight it. KENT CLARE, COMMISSIONER OF INCOME TAX “Well we haven’t gotten anything and let me say that in the past the media has asked me a lot about that case; we have no difficulty in addressing any of those matters, the legitimacy of it and so on. It’s just that because it’s a litigation, it is prudent not to make any comment until at some point it’s full; beyond that the Income and Business Tax Act prevents us from disclosing persons but as a matter of fact, nothing has come to us yet.”

Cancer Walk Has Tremendous Turnout
“Hundreds of participants congregated on the Philip Goldson Highway in front of Celina’s for the annual cancer walk on Saturday morning. The walk has seen a steady growth over the years as participants ranged from the very young to the more mature. President of the Belize Cancer, Society Laura Longsworth said raising awareness has been key to the walk’s continued success.” LAURA LONGSWORTH – PRESIDENT, BELIZE CANCER SOCIETY “This fantastic support from the community and that’s what we thrive for, that’s what we live on, so it gives us a great joy to have the community come out and show their support and walk in solidarity with everybody who may or may not have cancer. You know this is like sixteen years down the road, and we have been, at last, we can say that we’re finally getting there. We’ll have to change our entire modus operandi and the organizational structure even, to cope with the demands to services from the community. So even our own health professionals now are referring our patients to the cancer society for transition, counseling and so on, and yes what is happening now is an interesting thing because the community itself is feeling the impact of cancer and so then there is hardly a family who has not been touched one way or the other by the entire issue of cancer. Whether it is a friend, a child of a friend, somebody….and I think because of our public awareness campaigns people are getting it, and so then from here on, this entire issue/exercise is right smack in the middle of a global strategy to get people moving, to reduce our body weight, to be happy, to be in open spaces, to be hopeful. This gives me a joy when I see people in open spaces, walking and challenging each other to reach the cancer society.”


Man Shot Dead in San Pedro
A fatal shooting incident in the wee hours of the morning has claimed the life of one man from San Pedro town. According to reports, 49 year old Alfred Kelvin was walking on Seaweed Street at around 2:05 am on Saturday, May 31st, when someone fired a single gunshot,...

San Ignacio Town Councillor Detained for Unruly Behaviour
Plus News received information over the weekend that a San Ignacio Town Councillor was detained by Police Saturday night because of his conduct in public. Police were called out to the San Ignacio Welcome Center to address an altercation and when they arrived the Councillor, who we understand was under the...

Tour Competitor Denies Instigating Bar Brawl
Police report that tour guide 23 year old Vitalino Reyes Jr. is on life support at the Karl Heusner Memorial Hospital. He is reported to be in a coma as a result of injuries sustained in a fight at the Long Island Bar on Blue Marlin Boulevard on Thursday...

Commissioner of Income Tax Says Assessments on Coyes Were Lawful
On Friday, we told you that surviving members of the Coye family would be allowed access to their finances following a lifting of the freezing order put in place since May 5. A related civil case is still ongoing but Justice Sonia Young found no good argument to continue...

Murder Charges to be Filed Against Joseph West
Joseph West is now facing a charge of murder, an upgrade from that attempted murder, grievous harm, dangerous harm, and aggravated assault charges he was already facing. Those charges were as a result of a chopping incident on May 11th at a bar in Corozal. West and Giovanni Borland...

Lots of Weed in Empty Lots
On Friday 30th May, police were tipped off to a sack of cannabis in an empty lot. A joint police team went to the empty lot situated off the Fitzgibbon Alley in the Pickstock Hutment Area, Belize City. That is where police found the sack which contained eight separate...

Prime Minister of Belize Visits IDB President
The Prime Minister of Belize, the Hon. Dean Barrow, made a visit to the InterAmerican Development Bank in Washington, D.C. last week. There, the Prime Minister met with IDB President Luis Alberto Moreno where the two reaffirmed the strong partnership that exists between the IDB and Belize. They also...

United States’ Southern Partnership Station Program 2014 Kicks Off
The United States’ Southern Partnership Station Program 2014 in Belize officially began on Sunday when the Military Sealift Command joint high-speed vessel, USNS Spearhead, arrived at the Port of Big Creek on Sunday morning. Sailors disembarked the vessel to begin Southern Partnership Station which is designed to strengthen civil...

Church Continues Protest Against Ouster of Professor Brendan Bain
The second “Freedom Under Attack” protest took place on Saturday, following up on the May 23 event at Battlefield Park. Former head of the Caribbean HIV/AIDS Regional Training Initiative (CHART) program at the University of the West Indies, Dr. Brendan Bain, had his contract terminated by the University on May 20 after...

Arthur Saldivar on Central Bank Statute
On Friday we told you of Senior Counsel Rodwell Williams’ reaction to his legal colleague Arthur Saldivar’s payment of $2,000 in coins as part of costs for a recent summary judgment against Saldivar for libel of Prime Minister Dean Barrow. We reported that according to Williams, a Central Bank statute...

Policeman’s Son is Accuser and Accused
Jerson Grinage, son of Precinct 2 Officer in Charge Superintendent Alford Grinage, was falsely accused of committing an aggravated assault with a firearm. It is a serious charge that would have seen him sent on remand to jail under current statutes. But the charge was false, made to cover...

Caye Caulker Chronicles

Miss Lobster Fest Gala 2014
RESERVE YOUR TICKETS NOW!! DON’T WAIT TILL IT’S TOO LATE!! Contact Ernesto Marin, Ilda Marin, Chantel Marin, Elizabeth Usher or Shary Trejo.

Patrick Jones

Water on the Philip Goldson Highway
Motorists traveling on the Philip Goldson Highway just outside of Orange Walk town this morning experienced water across the road from a nearby creek. This is at the entrance to San Jose village around 9 am today.

IdeaLab Studios launches Belize Travel Magazine online
There is a new online Magazine designed to attract visitors to Belize. The Belize Travel Magazine went online last month and has been sharing the beauty of Belize via photographs and videos highlighting the good side of the jewel for both visitors and Belizeans alike. The Belize Travel Magazine is the brainchild of businessman Demian Solano and his wife Nicole and promotes itself as “all the inspiration you need for your Belize Vacations!” The magazine shares pictures and videos of various places in Belize, ranging from the Cayes to the Maya Archaeological sites and the Caves of Belize.

Medical equipment and supplies donated to the PG hospital
The Punta Gorda hospital has received a donation of medical supplies and equipment from an institution in the United States. The forty-foot container of valuable equipment and supplies was handed over to the Deputy Regional Manager for Health Services in Toledo, Ruth McDonald this past weekend. It includes ultra sound equipment, x-ray units, defibrillators, beds, chairs and dental equipment along with ancillary supplies. Chairman of the Toledo Health Committee Alejandro Vernon says that with the receipt of the donated equipment and medical supplies from Project Cure in Colorado, USA, surplus supplies and equipment will be sent to satellite clinics in different parts of the Toledo district.

Policeman’s son is accuser and accused
Jerson Grinage, son of Precinct 2 Officer in Charge Superintendent Alford Grinage, was falsely accused of committing an aggravated assault with a firearm. It is a serious charge that would have seen him sent on remand to jail under current statutes. But the charge was false, made to cover up an alleged attempted burglary. On May 30 at Mahogany Heights Village, Grinage said he confronted two armed men attempting to break into his house, carrying firearms. A struggle ensued and they chased him with what he alleged was a 16-gauge shotgun. But it is alleged that Yannick Smith was made to report to police that it was Grinage who approached him with a machete and a firearm and pointed the latter at him.

Trevor Vernon clears court costs for Castro case
Toward the end of last week Trevor Vernon was facing the might of the courts and the wrath of Senior Counsel Denys Barrow for daring to pay half his court costs in pillowcases full of shillings. It’s become the talk of the town but Vernon today he put all the talk to rest by clearing the remainder of his court debt, some $2,430. It helps him avoid having his worldly goods sold and puts him on the road back to normality. According to Vernon, a combination of events, including unexpected costs from BEL and reported blocking of his international calls to the United States has forced him to reevaluate his options for refiling the case. He says he is now almost sure he will not continue with the case, especially with the lack of an Integrity Commission to investigate Castro’s alleged misdeeds. He described the case as an “academic exercise” testing the strength of the Code of Conduct of the Constitution, which it turns out is in fact not very strong, because it has no penalties for offenders.

Tour competitor denies instigating bar brawl
According to police, Franks Eddy, Cayo District resident and tour guide 23 year old Vitalino Reyes Jr is on life support at the Karl Heusner Memorial Hospital. He is reported to be in a coma as a result of injuries sustained in a fight at the Long Island Bar on Blue Marlin Boulevard on Thursday evening. Companion 21 year old Yoney Vega claims that they were attacked by “one of their competitors …accompanied by his employees.” That is a not so subtle reference to Yohnny Rosado, owner of (Butts Up), who has been locked in a heated dispute with Vitalino’s father, Vitalino Reyes Sr., who owns the similarly named According to Vega, they were at the bar around 4:15 p.m. on Thursday when Rosado and his crew arrived.

The June 1st, 2014 issue of The STAR (Cayo) is online HERE

This Week's Stories:

  • Two Drug Traffickers Fined And Confined:
    Utter astonishment was the expression of the faces of two convicted drug traffickers today when San Ignacio Town magistrate Narda Morgan ordered for them to be fined and to be confined to prison. The police case against the two Belizean men from San Jose Succotz, Cayo began on a Sunday morning, September 16, 2012 when, at around 9:30, acting upon information received, two policemen intercepted, near the Macal River Park in San Ignacio Town, a black Toyota Corolla car with Benque Viejo Town taxi license plates BVO-D-00364. The driver of the vehicle was identified as Alfredo Marin, 38 at the time. Seated on the opposite side of the driver, in the back seat of the car, was another male person who was later identified as Jaime Tun, 25 at the time. As Tun sat in the back seat of the car, police saw a black and blue knapsack between his legs on the floor of the car.
  • Recording The Sudden Passing Of Michael Lewis:
    We join the community in the expression of deepest sympathy to Aunt Lou and her family at today’s sudden passing of her son Michael Anthony Lewis. Mike was a neighbor and a childhood friend. He was an easy going person who spent all his life next to his mother, retired primary school teacher, Mrs. Louise Lewis, who describes him as a caring son and shoulder she could always lean on. He religiously attended the Santa Elena Catholic Church with his mother and sisters. His sudden passing on Sunday shocked the community as he was active right up to the time of his departing this earthly life on Sunday, May 25, 2014. Michael was a career public officer. Immediately after graduating from Sacred Heart High School, Michael began working in Belmopan. His public service career spanned over 30 years during which he worked in the Ministry of the Public Service; the Office of the Prime Minister and, at the time of his passing, he was serving as the Finance Officer in the Ministry of Labour, Local Government, Rural Development, National Emergency Management Organization and Immigration and Nationality.
  • Coming Soon – The First Cement Street In the History Of Santa Elena Town:
    The office of Cayo Central’s Area Representative, Hon. Rene Montero today announced that government funds has now been allotted for the historic concreting of the very first street in the Santa Elena, Cayo. The street selected for this historic transformation is Bishop Martin Street. Apart from providing employment for residents in the community, the almost 800 thousand dollar project will enhance the area and increase the value of all those properties in the area. Minister Montero informed that with the intersected Perez Street and Loma Luz Boulevard already asphalted, the concreted Bishop Martin Street will enhance the environment of those living in the area including the lives of teachers and the hundreds of students attending Santa Elena Primary school the largest primary school in the town.
  • A Plan To Capture Young Minds As A Bulwark Against Poverty And Crime:
    It is a well known fact that if we can capture the minds of the young in a positive, constructive way, we can mold a future generation of great achievers its people can be proud of. If we can get them interested in education and learning at an early age, it is quite likely, that for a majority, this zeal will continue through adolescence and adulthood, and may provide a bulwark against poverty and crime. Belize is a developing country with many of the attendant problems of one. Statistics on poverty and crime reflect the dire need for better education and training which could result in gainful employment for our graduates and young people. Such an outcome, obviously, requires the full active participation of parents, schools, churches, government, industry, media, and civil society. In other words, it does take a village, a neighborhood, a family, to raise a child. While it is difficult sometimes to overcome the ills which create poverty and hopelessness, we as a society need to create a mindset in our youths that that despair is not insurmountable, and that things can be better through preparation now in school for a better life, a preparation that begins at the primary school level.
  • A Senior Citizen Allegedly Abused:
    As a productive citizen of this community, I cannot allow for the abuse of my elderly father, at the hands of a policeman attached to the station in San Ignacio, to just disappear under the radar. I am publicizing this incident in the hope that such ill treatment does not befall another person, more so an elderly citizen in my community or anywhere else in this beautiful country of ours. I know that this kind of official abuse is not tolerated by the Government of the day, the current Minister of Police or the Commissioner of Police. So I ask, “Why is it then that some police abuse the very people they are sworn to serve and protect despite the clear mandate of those to whom they must answer?” The only answer that comes to mind is disrespect and the lack of discipline. Disrespect for the uniform they wear and disrespect for their superiors.
  • Ariel Rosado Foundation:
    It was a RIDE for Scholarships… a RIDE for Healthy Living…… a RIDE for fun! Just before 1:00 pm on Saturday May 10th 2014 about 150 cyclists rolled into the Hour Bar and Grill Compound, Newtown Barracks in Belize City. This marked the culmination of a very successful Third Ariel Rosado Annual Bike Ride. The ride started at 6:15 a.m. from Galen University in Central Farm and cruised the 75 miles to The Hour Bar & Grill in Belize City at an average speed of 15 miles per hour. There were rest stops at the Galen Campus in Belmopan, Cheers on the George Price Highway and at the CD Gas Station on the Burrell Boom Road. After its Third Year the Ariel Rosado Annual Bike Ride is being described by knowledgeable members of the cycling community as the best organized and managed Bike Ride in Belize. The Board of Directors of the Ariel Rosado Foundation extends a sincere THANK YOU to all RIDERS, WORKERS, SPONSORS and SUPPORTERS whose participation made it possible to keep the mission and vision of the ARIEL ROSADO FOUNDATION alive.
  • Obesity:
    An obese person has accumulated so much body fat that it might have a negative effect on their health. If a person's bodyweight is at least 20% higher than it should be, he or she is considered obese. If your Body Mass Index (BMI) is between 25 and 29.9 you are considered overweight. If your BMI is 30 or over you are considered obese. What is Body Mass Index (BMI)? The BMI is a statistical measurement derived from your height and weight. Although it is considered to be a useful way to estimate healthy body weight, it does not measure the percentage of body fat. The BMI measurement can sometimes be misleading - a muscleman may have a high BMI but have much less fat than an unfit person whose BMI is lower. However, in general, the BMI measurement can be a useful indicator for the 'average person'. Why do people become obese? People become obese for several reasons, including: Body mass measurement, consuming too many calories.
  • St. Martin's Credit Union Celebrates Its 65th Annual General Meeting:
    St. Martin Credit Union (SMCU) celebrated its 65th Annual General Meeting at the Octavia Waight Center Auditorium. A large number of credit union members from San Ignacio, Santa Elena, Benque Viejo and surrounding communities came to celebrate the occasion. Master of Ceremony for the occasion was Rene Torres, vice president of SMCU. The VP welcomed everyone and introduced the Board of Directors after which the meeting was called to order by Dr. John Morris, president of SMCU with the singing of the National Anthem with background music provided by the Marimba Academy of Benque Viejo’s House of Culture.
  • Ex-Ecuador President Mahuad Sentenced To 12 Years In Jail:
    A court in Ecuador has sentenced former President Jamil Mahuad in absentia to 12 years in jail for embezzlement. The ruling comes two days after Interpol issued a warrant for his arrest. He denies any wrongdoing. Mr Mahuad fled to the United States in 2000 after a military coup. He was accused of ordering banks to close for several days and freezing the accounts of ordinary citizens to protect the interests of bankers associated with him. The decision, taken in March 1999, came during a serious economic crisis.
  • Truth Or Lie:
    A mother in jail on a report made by her 11 year old daughter. San Ignacio police this week reported the disturbing news of a mother remanded to prison for allegedly prostituting her 11 year old daughter. While the report is disturbing, the information bears several inconsistencies as the child, residing in a Cayo village with a Or Lie guardian, reported the matter 4 months later, on May 16, 2014. Furthermore, the report indicates that the alleged incident occurred throughout the entire month of December 2013, from the 1st right up to the 31st December 2013 when she was staying with her mother who at the time was residing in Dangriga. The child was medically examined and the medical practitioner certified that child has experienced activity of a sexual nature.
  • Dam break early warning system:
    The Belize Electric Company Limited (BECOL) in collaboration with the National Emergency Management Organization (NEMO), and the Department of Environment (DOE) hosted a public discussion for the twin towns of San Ignacio and Santa Elena on Friday, May 16 2014 at 6:00 p.m. at the Cayo Welcome Center in San Ignacio Town to discuss matters relating to the dam break early warning system. Announcements via local radio and television were sent out for public notice on May 6 2014 informing the public of the venue and time of the event. The original venue was Hode’s Place San Ignacio Town. A change of venue from Hode’s Place to the Cayo Welcome Center was agreed after discussion with BECOL, DOE and NEMO. Announcements with the revised venue were sent to the local radio and television stations on May 8 and 9, 2014. Flyers were distributed on May 12 2014 to the various businesses in San Ignacio Town and Santa Elena Town. The announcements were publicized until May 16, 2014. This annual event is to educate the public on what to do in the event of a dam break. The Early Warning System (EWS) is part of the Emergency Preparedness Plan (EPP) and is designed to alert the public of a possible dam break. The public education session educates the public on where the safe zones are located. Signs are also installed to guide the public to the safe zones. The education process is conducted with the assistance of audio visuals and maps to sensitize the audience of the areas that would be inundated. This exercise targets the stakeholders along the Macal and Mopan Rivers and is executed by visiting the schools and conducting public education sessions in the villages, towns and resorts.
  • Remembering Maya Angelou A Phenomenal Woman!:
    Marguerite Johnson was born in St. Louis, Missouri, on April 4, 1928, the second child of Bailey Johnson, a doorman and a navy dietitian, and Vivian (Baxter) Johnson, a nurse and card dealer. Angelou's older brother, Bailey Jr., nicknamed Marguerite "Maya", derived from "My" or "Mya Sister". When Angelou was three and her brother four, their parents' "calamitous marriage" ended, and their father sent them to Stamps, Arkansas, alone by train, to live with their paternal grandmother, Annie Henderson. In "an astonishing exception" to the harsh economics of African- Americans of the time, Angelou's grandmother prospered financially during the Great Depression and World War II because the general store she owned sold needed basic commodities and because "she made wise and honest investments".
  • STAR Humor
  • Your Weekly Horoscope and Lucky Numbers
  • Letters to the Editor
  • Public Notices


Day Three of The Belize Chocolate Festival: The Lubaantun Maya Site
The last day, Sunday, took place at the Maya site of Lubaantun about 25 minutes outside of Punta Gorda in the tiny village of Columbia. (The local bar is called Club Medellin going with the village name…) Just before the Lubaantun site is an EARTHSHIP. The ONLY Earthship in Belize. But more on that tomorrow… Take me to your Earth Ship. This site is very different from others I’ve seen…I like it. Rather than rebuild the site completely, parts of it have been uncovered but left a bit…crumbly and with beautiful huge trees growing right out of it. Deconstructed. The main plaza was where all the action was going down. Booths set up with crafts…a bar tent packed with chocolate stout…

My Top Six Reasons for Visiting Belize’s Chaa Creek
After our vacation at Belize’s Chaa Creek earlier this year, I rave about the place all the time and have confidently steered a few friends in that direction. I say confidently because I have no doubt that no matter what their ages or interests, anyone will find something there to please and even excite them. Rather than keep repeating my mantra of good things about Chaa Creek, I thought I’d list my Top Six Reasons for a Chaa Creek Vacation: 1. It’s breathtakingly beautiful From the moment you arrive – check that, from the moment you are picked up at the airport by the friendly driver/ cum guide, you know that you’re someplace special. After a lovely, interesting ride in we were greeted by a the most welcoming, warm staff I’ve ever met. Just walking to our thatched roof rooms through tropical gardens we were immediately struck by what a paradise this place is. And that feeling only builds during canoe rides down the Macal River, horseback riding through miles of jungle trails, excursions to ancient Maya temples, nature walks… it goes on and on.

The best Mayan Ruins in Belize
Belize is home to some of the most amazing Mayan ruins in Mesoamerica. For those of you that don’t know what Mesoamerica is, it is defined as the region and cultural area in the Americas, extending roughly from central Mexico to Belize, Guatemala, El Salvador and Honduras. The ancient Maya civilization flourished in this area and created sprawling cities with extraordinary trading channels that ran from north to south, east to west and vice versa. Their era of grandeur came to an end but they left magnificent remnants of what was once a great empire. If you’ve been to a majestic Mayan site, you are already aware that Maya archeology isn’t only for history buffs, and if you haven’t, trust me, you’re missing out. Below is a list of the three best Mayan ruins in Belize. I’ve also included two nearby sites that are worth visiting. Xunantunich “Stone Woman”, Caracol “Snail, Shell”, Lamanai “Submerged Crocodile”, Tikal “at the Waterhole”, Chichen Itza “at the mouth of the well of the Itza”

“What the hell?” The bus lurched to a stop, passengers scrambling over each other to press their faces against the grimy windows. Sweat dripped from my forehead as the fickle breeze disappeared, while loud voices competed with distorted hip-hop from a dozen mobile phones. In my exhausted state I could understand little of the heavily-accented Creole, but eventually a single word started to make itself heard over and over again. A few people snapped photos on their phone as the bus eventually started to move, police waving the traffic on past what looked like a bundle of clothes in the middle of the road. Drawing closer, I realised that what I’d thought was discarded clothing was nothing of the sort. The body of a man lay face-up on the highway, the broken remains of a motorbike scattered up and down the road. Thick, dark blood lay pooled around his head and body, baking in the heat of a tropical morning. The white towel over his face explained why I couldn’t hear the wail of an approaching siren. There would be no point calling this man an ambulance. The murmurs from other passengers increased in volume as we passed, that single word being passed around like a football once again. Dead. It had been a long night. There’s one direct bus that plies the 9+ hour route between Cancun’s shiny resorts and the gritty sprawl of Belize City, and it doesn’t leave until 10:15pm. That wouldn’t be a problem if, like many other night buses in Mexico, the seats reclined into some kind of sleeping position. They don’t.

International Sources

The 2014 Atlantic Hurricane Season Begins
The 2014 Atlantic hurricane season is officially underway, and we already have an area of interest in the Gulf of Mexico to talk about. An area of low pressure over the Southern Gulf of Mexico's Bay of Campeche is generating disorganized heavy thunderstorm activity, and this area has a slight potential to develop late this week. In their 8 am EDT Monday Tropical Weather Outlook, NHC gave the disturbance a 10% chance of developing by Saturday. The chances for this disturbance to develop depend heavily on the fate of an area of disturbed weather in the Eastern Pacific located a few hundred miles south of Southeast Mexico (Invest 93E), which will move slowly northwards towards the Gulf of Mexico this week. Satellite loops show a steady increase in the intensity and organization of the heavy thunderstorms associated with 93E, and the system is already bringing heavy rains to Southern Guatemala and Southeast Mexico. With the 8 am EDT Monday run of the SHIPS model showing light wind shear of 5 - 10 knots and warm ocean temperatures of 29.5°C for the remainder of the week along 93E's path, development into a tropical depression is likely. In their 8 am EDT Monday Tropical Weather Outlook, NHC gave this system an 80% chance of developing into a tropical depression or tropical storm by Wednesday, and a 90% chance by Saturday.

Boldest Presidental Action Ever Taken to Combat Climate Change: EPA's New Regulations
President Obama's administration unveiled on Monday the "Clean Power Plan", a 645-page proposal to reduce carbon dioxide emissions from existing U.S. power plants under the 1970 Clean Air Act. The proposed regulations would reduce carbon dioxide emissions from these plants by 25% by 2020, compared to 2005 levels, and by 30% by 2030. The new regulations would hit the nation's 491 coal-fired power plants the most, since these plants account for 74% of the electric sector's carbon dioxide emissions, according to the Energy Information Administration. Coal burning supplies 37% of the nation's electric power, just behind natural gas.

Trent Oshawa professor gets funding to help dig up ancient Maya city
A local professor’s excavation of an ancient Maya city in Belize isn’t going unnoticed, having piqued the interest of one of the world’s largest scientific and educational institutions. Trent University Oshawa professor Dr. Helen R. Haines, who founded the Ka’Kabish Archaeological Research Project, has received a coveted $20,000 grant from the National Geographic Society’s Committee for Research and Exploration. The grant will help with both support of student research and project infrastructure. “I am deeply honoured to be receiving a National Geographic Society grant,” said Dr. Haines. “I remember reading National Geographic journals as a child, and to think that I might one day be featured in one of their volumes is a dream come true.”

Bain Dug His Own Grave
A lot has been reported in the media about the Brendan Bain issue, though some perspectives seem to have missed the point completely. My understanding is that Prof Bain was invited by a church group as a medical professional with expertise in the field of infectious diseases to testify in support of a cause that the buggery laws in Belize should remain. He testified freely by choice, Belize being far outside his jurisdiction, Jamaica. The testimony itself was a 56-page affidavit, a lengthy document with reasonable statements about public health, costs and risks of unsafe practices that ultimately cause the spread of infectious diseases, the focus being on men who have sex with men (MSM). However, he said very little in the affidavit about heterosexual risks, as if this group was immune. He didn't elaborate on other high-risk groups such as drug users, prostitutes, etc. Understandably, many felt his testimony was deliberately tailored, showing a personal bias against MSM to, therefore, support the buggery laws in Belize. This position contradicted directly with CHART, the organisation he directed. It argues that these laws are discriminatory and hamper its work to effectively reach vulnerable and target groups. Prof Bain was well aware of that position.

Foreign banks agree to reveal Americans' hidden assets to IRS
It will soon get a lot harder to use overseas accounts to hide income and assets from the Internal Revenue Service. More than 77,000 foreign banks, investment funds and financial institutions have agreed to share information about American account holders with the IRS as part of a crackdown on offshore tax evasion, the Treasury Department announced on Monday. The list includes 515 Russian financial institutions. Russian banks had to apply directly to the IRS because the United States broke off negotiations with the Russian government as a result of an information-sharing agreement because of Russia's actions in Ukraine. Almost 70 countries have agreed to share information from their banks as part of a law that targets Americans hiding assets overseas. Participating countries include the world's financial giants, as well as many places where Americans traditionally hid assets, including Switzerland, the Cayman Islands and the Bahamas. Starting in March 2015, those financial institutions have agreed to supply the IRS with names, account numbers and balances for accounts controlled by taxpayers.

Caribbean economic outlook adds to difficulties for insurers
As insurance industry leaders gather in Curaçao to discuss the challenges and opportunities they face in the region, low economic growth and high public sector indebtedness continue to pose serious headwinds. In its latest economic outlook in April, the IMF described economic growth in the region as having remained tepid, rising 2.8% in 2013, constrained by high debt levels and weak competitiveness. The global economic crises took a heavy toll on the region with tourism numbers plummeting following 2008 and financial sector stress continuing in the Eastern Caribbean Currency Union (ECCU), reflecting low growth and high and rising nonperforming loans. In addition, low bank profitability brought on by a regulatory interest rate floor on savings deposits has seen credit growth to the private sector remain subdued, and a resolution of troubled financial institution constitutes a risk. In the tourism dependent economies of the region – including Bahamas, Barbados, Jamaica and ECCU member states – real GDP growth in 2013 picked up just modestly to 0.75 of a percent from close to zero in 2012, according to the IMF, as tourism numbers and spending continued to underperform. Construction activity meanwhile showed signs of bottoming out.

Traveling to picturesque Belize provided 12 UPIKE students and two faculty members with a unique classroom perspective. The bio-diverse location was chosen for the study abroad course because of its tropical rainforests, coral reefs and rich Mayan culture, according to Tim Whittier, Ph.D., associate professor of biology. “Showing a picture is not the same thing as seeing in person,” Whittier said of his approach to teaching natural sciences. “You learn in the classroom, but seeing it, appreciating it, smelling it, hearing it, touching it. I think that is where the real learning comes from, experiencing it.” There were traditional lectures on endangered turtles and jaguar research, but much of the learning process happened in nature’s classroom. Students explored coral reefs, snorkeling and scuba diving in waters inhabited by many species of tropical fish. Zip lining through the rainforest, they encountered howler monkeys and observed plants and trees from a bird’s-eye view. Between adventures, students swam in a lagoon or relaxed in a seaside hammock. With a background in botany, Darla French, Ph.D., instructor of biology and co-leader on the trip, provided lessons on Belize’s abundant plant life.

Belize listed as number 6 of 10 Best Honeymoon Destinations in the World for 2014 - AARP
These 10 international destinations offer beaches, mountains and cities of cultural interest and the perfect setting for your romantic getaway.


Video: Belize Tarpon Tagging Expedition, 3min.
This coming August, El Pescador Lodge will play host to the Belize Tarpon Tagging Expedition led by internationally acclaimed Marine Biologist Dr. Jerry Ault, the master of tarpon fishing, Stu Apte and Chicago Angler/conservationist, Adam Marton. For more information;­ing This is a rare opportunity for folks who dream of being a Marine Biologist for a day and playing a significant role in the effort to protect and understand global tarpon populations. The Belize Tarpon Tagging Expedition is a chance to actually help answer the "$64,000 Question" -- Are our fish, their fish? If you are a passionate tarpon angler who wants to do everything you can to insure the tarpon have a bright future, we need your help!

Video: Drumming in a Garifuna School in Punta Gorda, Belize, 3min.

Video: Belize Trip 2014, 3min.
A trip to Belize in 2014. Celebrating a wedding anniversary. Mayan Ruins, Cave Exploration, Disc Golf, Snorkeling, Kayaking, and a lot of other fun-stuff.

Video: you better belize it bro, 4min.

Video: Belize Aggressor 2014 -2, 6min.

Video: ROSE CLASSIC (BELIZE CITY) 2014, 6min.
The Nike sponsored "Rose Classic" basketball program was brought to Belize by Cleon Hyde 8 years ago. The camp has grown in popularity throughout the nation. Rose Classic has given the youth of Belize City an alternative to gangs and violence. Many former Rose Classic players have gone on to play basketball in the US, and have set great examples for their community.

June 2, 2014


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Specials and Events

Last night's TV news on Channel 7, Channel 5 and CTV 3
Also with the most recent Open Your Eyes, and the Dickie Bradley Specials

The San Pedro Sun

Wolfe’s Woofer: What Smell? What Noise?
“It’s time for you to go to the doctor for a checkup,” Sherry said. “What?” “I said it’s time for you to get a checkup.” “A checkup? Why do I need a checkup?” “One good reason is that you were in the hospital only nine months ago. When you have been sick enough to go […]

Police houses still not relocated 70 days after SPTC committed to do so; new barracks building near completion
70 days after a commitment was made by the San Pedro Town Council (SPTC) to move two houses donated to the San Pedro Police Department, that promise has yet to be filled. The houses were donated to the police through the San Pedro Business Association (SPBA) to be used as living quarters. SPBA founding member Elito Arceo had offered to move the buildings with community support, but the SPTC stepped in and committed to doing so instead. Once occupied by members of the Belize Coast Guard on the island, the structures remain unoccupied on a private property in the San Pablo Area. When asked what has taken so long for the SPTC to relocate the structures, Deputy Mayor Gabriel “Gabby” Nuñez indicated that beyond previous reasons given, he wants to complete a project he is currently involved with, that will help address the living conditions of the police, before moving on to the relocation of the two buildings.

Police Report
Boris Fuentes, a Salvadoran taxi driver of a Laguna Drive, Boca Del Rio, address in San Pedro Town, visited the San Pedro Police Station along with officers from the San Pedro Ambergris Caye Neighborhood Watch Patrol, who had in their custody, 22-year-old Luis Gonzalez of a San Pedro Town address. An initial report from Fuentes is that at about 12:45AM, he was at the food stand located by the airstrip when he was approached by Luis Gonzalez to hire his taxi to take him home. Upon arrival at the passenger’s destination, the passenger exited the vehicle and subsequently disappeared without paying Fuentes for his service. The San Pedro Ambergris Caye Neighborhood Watch Patrol sprang into action and found the passenger on the beach trying to hide. The young man was then escorted to the San Pedro Police Station where he was detained.

Doctor Love: Children and Pets
Readers, please send your letters. They can be emails, formal letters or handwritten notes. They are edited solely for grammar and spelling. Also, they are sometimes edited for length. Dear Doctor Love, My fiancé and I are in a disagreement. We met two years ago when she was here on vacation and last year she […]

Misc Belizean Sources

Here is the last hurricane to hit Corozal in 2007
Are we glad May is over? Not too quick - Today, Belize marks the official beginning of this year’s hurricane season and a very wet weekend. Here is the last hurricane to hit Corozal in 2007 - Hurricane Dean made landfall along the Yucatan Peninsula near to Costa Maya at Latitude 18.7 N and Longitude 87.8 W about 40 miles north of Corozal Town on 21 August, 2007 at 0745 UT traveling westward at 20 mph. Hurricane Dean was a Category Five (5) hurricane (winds of 165 mph). Gale force winds extended 60 miles from the centre heavily affecting the northern Districts of Corozal and Orange Walk. The Belize District, mainly Ambergris Caye and Caye Caulker was also significantly affected. After crossing the Yucatan Peninsula, Dean maintained hurricane force winds and weakened to a category one (1) storm heading off into the Bay of Campeche in the Gulf of Mexico. Displaced persons from the affected areas sought shelter within and outside of the affected areas. In all a total of 87 shelters opened countrywide that accommodated approximately 8,133 persons. The City of Belmopan also in the Cayo district reported 1,878 persons registered. The Corozal District has 35,500 (Central Statistical Office Report 2005) persons with 8,800 or 24.79% of the population being concentrated in Corozal Town. Some seventy-five (75) shelters were opened to the public and some five thousand two hundred (5,200) persons were registered.

Seth Montfort Returns to GPC
Seth Montfort is returning to the George Price Center for 2 more of his 'Made for Belize' concerts. He'll be there Monday, June 2nd, and Tuesday, June 3rd. Seth's been playing around Belize for years, and he's a very talented pianist. Definitely worth seeing if you have the time.

Western Ballaz Defeat No LImit in Playoff Game 2
The Western Ballaz travelled to Belize City on Friday to play the second game in the semi-finals(game stats here). It was a close game, and the Western Ballaz won by 2 points, 64 - 62. They'll host the No Limit this Friday in the last game of the semi-finals. Go Ballaz!

The Reporter

Cuba and US discuss improving relations
Cuba and the United States held talks late this past week to improve U.S.-Cuba relations. Cuban President Raul Castro met with a 12-member U.S. Chamber of Commerce delegation on Thursday. According to Thomas Donohue, the head of the U.S. Chamber of Commerce, the three-day visit “was positive” and he expexted the talks to continue. The delegation included executives from Amway, a direct-selling mega-corporation and Cargill, one of the world’s largest suppliers of agricultural products and foods. Currently, Cuba’s 52-year-old trade embargo bans most trade between the two countries. Under reforms initiated by Raul Castro, nearly 500,000 Cubans have started their own businesses, activity that was strictly forbidden for much of the Cuban revolution.

Murder in San Pedro
San Pedro police are asking the assistance of San Pedro residents in solving the murder of Alfred Kelvin, 49, who was shot dead early Saturday on the island. Sketchy reports are that Kelvin was walking on Seaweed Street around 2 a.m. when someone fired a single gunshot, which struck him in the face.

Belize joins region in continued support of ousted professor
A little over 100 Belizeans gathered in front of the Supreme Court this weekend, joining in with others in the Caribbean to support ousted professor, Dr. Brendan Bain. The crowd gathered at the Battlefield Park from 11 a.m. till noon on Saturday bearing placards and signs condemning the University of the West Indies for terminating Dr. Bain, and warning passersby that their freedom of speech and conscience was under attack. Pastor Scott Stirm of Belize Action emphasized that the follow-up protest is to resonate with Caribbean partners in keeping the issues in the realm of public discussion. “When we heard that our Caribbean partners are scheduling protests for next week, we decided to keep hammering because this is bigger than just Bain.” Stirm said that Jamaica, in particular, is scheduling two more protests for the coming week, to rally support behind Bain and the data that he presented in court.

Patrick Jones

Hurricane season for 2014 underway
The 2014 hurricane season for the Tropical Atlantic, the Gulf of Mexico and the Caribbean started today. Forecasters expect an average season this year with about a dozen or so named storms expected. Of that amount, they expect one or two to become major hurricanes. Currently, there are no features of interest in the Tropical Atlantic. In the Gulf of Mexico there is a stationary trough of low pressure that is producing widespread cloudiness and showers. No development of this feature is expected at this time.

Belize and the IDB reaffirm strong partnership
Belize and the Washington-based Inter-American Development Bank continue to enjoy a strong partnership. That is according to a press release from the IDB issued on Friday announcing a visit to the organization’s headquarters by Prime Minister Dean Barrow. During the visit, Prime Minister Barrow met with IDB president Luis Alberto Moreno and expressed his satisfaction at the Bank’s approval of its country strategy with Belize. That work plan, which covers the next four years is designed to support the Belize government’s own development agenda focusing on education, tourism, transport and trade and tax policy. This year the IDB is assisting Belize with loans totaling US$30 million to be used for road rehabilitation and education. Belize became a borrowing member of the IDB in 1992.

Volunteers plant mangrove in Placencia village
The canal adjacent to the airstrip in Placencia village is now sporting a fresh line of mangrove plants. About four hundred mangrove seedlings were planted during an environmental project carried out on Friday of last week. The mangrove planting project was organized in memory of environmentalist Adrian Vernon and had the participation of over forty volunteers including members of Vernon’s family. According to a press release sent out by the organizers of the event, the Placencia Mangrove Planting Project was carried out in the Crimson Development community of the village. The official release recalls that Adrian Vernon was “a staunch advocate for the protection of the Placencia lagoon as well as national mangrove restoration initiatives.” He died in February of this year.


Chaya Cafe now open at Zen Arcade
In celebration of the opening of the Chaya cafe Zen Arcade is extending a special offer to all new students new students to Treetop Studio. On Monday June 2nd ONLY every new student to Tree Top Studio will receive at $20.00 credit voucher for the Chaya Cafe (valid thru June 2014) Monday 8:30 am – 9:45 am Intermediate/Advanced 10:00 am – 10:45 am Pilates Core Intensive 11:00 am – 12:00 pm Rejuvenate / Beginners level 4:30 pm – 5:30 pm Muay Thai Beginners ages 4-14 5::30 pm – 6:30 pm Dance & Bodywork with Suzana (Teens & Adults) 6:45 pm – 7:45 pm Candlelight Enjoy many other services at Zen Arcade: Chaya Cafe in Partnership with Rojo Lounge serving up tasty award winning foods and signature cocktails Beauty Bar at Zen for all your hair, nails, and waxing needs. Restore Massage with prenatal, swedish, deep tissue. A wide range of Pure Aesthetics including Botox, Jevederm, chemical peels, facials, Derma Pen by licensed medical professional. Rug Rats Play Club, hourly childcare in a safe, learning environment with licensed childcare. Serenity Pool with gardens complimentary for all guests and students.

“TV Dinners” in San Pedro, Ambergris Caye, Belize.
Long time no ‘speak’. I’ve been thinking of you though but just haven’t had the get up and go to knock out an edition. That and the small fact (sic) that I didn’t think that I had that much to tell you about. I mean, there are so many times I can get away with that “out on the veranda with the mug of black coffee” routine. Or are there? I had plans for today that included an early start in the garden with the pruning shears but the rain that has been coming down for most of last night and this morning have put paid to that. Well at least for a while anyway. So what could I do? I know, sit out on the veranda with a mug of black coffee and my iPad and ‘knock out’ an edition. But what to write about? Sitting there listening to the rain I struggled to conjure up something mildly interesting or amusing and, if I’m really lucky, both (allow me to fantasise) to write about. I don’t know why but I thought of Sigmund Freud’s comment about inspiration. Apparently he said ” When inspiration doesn’t come, I go halfway to meet it”. So I thought if it was good enough for Sigmund, then it’s good enough for me.

Photo Essay: The 2014 Chocolate Festival of Belize
Annually, during the Commonwealth holiday weekend, the Toledo District hosts the Chocolate Festival of Belize and this year it happened on May 23rd – 25th, 2014. On Friday there was the Wine and Chocolate celebration, Saturday was the Taste of Toledo street fair on front street in Punta Gorda and on Sunday, the closing ceremonies took place at the beautiful Lubaantun Maya ruins. I’m very proud of this festival, it showcases something that the country produces very well and most importantly, it promotes tourism to the less visited Southern Belize. Earlier this week I shared a blog post written by San Pedro Scoop on my Facebook fan page but today I ran into a beautiful selection of photos by the Belize Tourism Board and thought it would be nice if I shared my top 10 favourite photographs that capture how fun the event was.

Why Visiting Or Moving To Ambergris Caye Is Worth It
There is no denying that Ambergris Caye in Belize country is a beautiful destination. With gorgeous beaches, incredible scenery and warm climate, it is the perfect place to relax and unwind. For most people, a few days or weeks in paradise is just not enough. If you are interested in visiting or even moving to Ambergris Caye, here are seven reasons to push through and make one of the best decisions of your life. 1. Affordability – One of the biggest factors to determine whether to vacation or relocate to a new place is budget. On Ambergris Caye, the costs of living are low. Belize real estate and even Belize hotels are affordable, and basic necessities are much cheaper than they would be in North American destinations. 2. Relaxed atmosphere – The thing that brings visitors back to Ambergris Caye time and time again is the atmosphere. The pace of life is slower on the island, creating a place that is welcoming and inviting. Whether you intend to spend your days relaxing on white sand beaches or swimming in refreshing waters, you will enjoy the relaxing and calming environment.

4 Ways To Enjoy And Relax In Belize This Winter Season
Belize is the only English-speaking country in Central America. It is a country filled with natural beauty, white sand beaches, and ancient Maya culture. The Belizeans refer to their country as ‘jewel’ and they are proud of their diverse heritage. You can see Caribbean, Mayan, Asian, European and African cultures all over this small country. Did you know that it only takes about an hour and a half to fly from Miami to Belize City, and it takes only a little over two hours from Miami to New York City? Winter in North America means dry season in Belize. It is the best time to visit from December to March when the rainy season is over and humidity is lower. The subtropical temperatures of Belize average between 75 to 85 degrees. If you are planning to take a break from the cold this winter, think no further. Belize may be just the right place to spend your time with your family away from the cold days of winter. Here are four ways you can find your piece of paradise in Belize this winter. 1.Enjoy and Relax in the Sea The many colors of the underwater world of Belize are paradise to divers and snorkelers. The Belize Barrier Reef is the second largest barrier reef in the world. This 185-mile long natural wonder has over 70 varieties of hard coral and 500 species of fish. The Blue Hole is a Belizean icon, with a depth of 410 feet and 1,000 feet in circumference. It is here that you may find the whale shark.

Going On The Specialty Chocolate Trail In Toledo, Belize
The remote southern Toledo region of Belize country does not make it onto many tourist itineraries, but it can be a great destination for summer. You might not be aware of it, but there are reports of specialty chocolate tours and hands-on lessons offered at farms spread across the lush valleys and hills of Toledo. Any of these activities should be perfect for families vacationing in Belize. This Is Perfect For Families Vacationing In Belize In San Felipe, a village of about 65 homes is home to families who have been farming specialty chocolate for generations. Get a guide who will lead into the cacao trees, where you will find oblong yellow pods from trunks. With a whack of a club, it will split open to reveal the goo-covered seeds. You can remove one, put it in your mouth, suck off the sweet tart pulp, and then spitting the seed to the ground. The pulp does not take like chocolate at all, which is made from the seed. The people in this village make their specialty chocolate right in their cramped concrete kitchens, using a pile of dried, roasted and peeled cacao beans and old grinding stones. For most of them, this was their main way of living, paying for the needs of their children and even for their education. Using the grinding stones, the beans are shattered and mixed with wild vanilla, allspice and sugar. A savory odor should then linger in the air.

5 San Pedro Hotels With Cabanas On The Water
San Pedro is the main hub of Ambergris Caye, offering the most comprehensive range of lodging options on Belize country. A handful of San Pedro hotels in and around the town offers accommodations in beachfront cabanas – private cottages ranging from simple and rustic to modern and luxurious. These San Pedro resorts make an ideal choice for tourists seeking accommodations with a timeless tropical island feel. Hotel del Rio Less than 10 minutes from the heart of San Pedro, Hotel del Rio offers guest accommodations in thatched, beachfront cabanas inspired by the traditional architecture of Belize. It has a total of 13 cabanas, including seafront units. Each one sleeps 2 to 5 people, with a private porch or veranda and has high speed internet access. The Belize hotel can arrange various activities in the local area, including bone fishing, reef fishing, scuba diving and boat tours. Cocotal Inn and Cabanas Cocotal Inn and Cabanas occupies a beachfront property 2.5 miles north of San Pedro that was formerly a coconut plantation. This intimate resort offers 5 accommodation options: one oceanfront cottage with a four-poster bed and kitchenette, 2 garden cabanas with an open veranda and full kitchen, and a main house with 2 suites. Facilities include a freshwater pool, an outdoor dining area, complimentary bicycles and kayaks, and a private pier where fishing, snorkeling and diving, and water taxis are available.

Your Best Guide To Snorkeling In San Pedro Belize
With a 185-mile barrier reef, the opportunity to see a vast array of sea life in San Pedro Belize is pretty amazing. The options are basically endless when it comes to snorkeling. All around the island of Ambergris Caye, there is an abundance of colorful corals and sea life easily accessible by both whole day and half day tours. Diving is also an option, although it requires a PADI license. Hol Chan Marine Reserve This is arguably one of the most impressive snorkeling spots in the whole world, making it the most popular snorkel site in Belize country. It is just 4 miles south of San Pedro, making it easily accessible for a half day trip. Its four main zones is home to over 160 fish species, 40 coral species, 3 sea turtle species, 8 algae species and 2 sea grass species. Occasionally, sightings of tarpon, West Indian manatees and hammerhead sharks are reported. Shark-Ray Alley With excellent visibility, you can almost always see all species of fish in this spot, but the main attraction is definitely the nurse sharks and sting rays. As soon as the boat arrives to the site, you will notice dark shadows nearby. Nurse sharks average 4 to 6 feet high, while rays have a wingspan of 2 to 4 feet. With numerous boats in the area every day, these animals have a great tolerance for humans and seem to enjoy the interaction.

International Sources

Banging jams from Belize
Dancehall and reggae music have grown in Belize during the past 15 years. Dancehall is especially popular with two of its fans being brothers Jayme and Mark Ermeav, better known as Boom Bangaz. The production duo resides in Florida where they have earned an underground following by churning out remixes which they upload through social media, particularly their Soundcloud page. Their latest release is the song Bredrin Girl by deejay Chan Dizzy, best known in Jamaica for the songs, Strange Face and Hello Bad Mind. "The link with Chan Dizzy was good. Working with him felt natural and the vibe was right," said Mark, older of the brothers. Describing their music as a blend of dancehall, reggae and hip hop, the siblings are looking for the breakthrough on American pop radio. "We bring a mainstream fusion sound to the game. We blend dancehall with other genres to give it a more hip and marketable sound," Mark explained. "We want our music to be felt not only in the Caribbean or by Caribbean people living abroad, but by Americans and Europeans who have not yet connected with dancehall music."

NMSU entomology students travel to Belize to study life in the 'wild'
In March, through the Faculty-led International Programs, a group of eight students, led by Scott Bundy, associate professor of entomology in the College of Agricultural, Consumer and Environmental Sciences at New Mexico State University, traveled to Belize to research and experience its biodiversity. From venomous spiders, ants, leafhoppers and even marine invertebrates, the students' non-stop, 10-day trip brought a new perspective of what it's like to work as an entomologist in the field. "The idea was to get them out in the 'wild' because the insect diversity of tropical areas is so different than what we have around here," Bundy said. "The purpose of the class was to learn about arthropod biology, to observe how the animals behave in their environment, to learn proper field research techniques, and to just be more hands-on." Every activity doubled as a learning experience and included visiting ancient Mayan ruins, caves, reefs and what many students enjoyed, tasting the local cuisine. "One of the biggest things we got to enjoy was their food, which has a lot of variety," said Helen Vessel, assistant researcher at Bundy's lab in the Department of Entomology, Plant Pathology and Weed Science. "Every meal was a feast." But, before getting on the plane, students participated in a series of lectures on campus, which included Mayan history and arthropod taxonomy and biology, enabling them to familiarize themselves with the types of insects they would encounter in different parts of the country.

Exercise Tradewinds 2014 underway
Military and security forces from 11 Caribbean nations have joined the United States and Canada for maritime security and disaster response training as part of Exercise Tradewinds 2014, which began earlier today. This year’s Tradewinds has expanded to two main phases: Phase I, the maritime phase, in Antigua-Barbuda ongoing through June 10, and Phase II, the land portion, June 16-25 in the Dominican Republic, which has 16 participating nations. The exercise supports the Caribbean Basin Security Initiative (CBSI), a Department of State regional security partnership. Taking part in maritime training are units from the host nation Antigua-Barbuda Defence Force (ABDF), as well as national police and coast guard units from Bahamas, Belize, Dominica, Grenada, Guyana, Jamaica, St Kitts and Nevis, St Vincent and the Grenadines, Suriname, and Trinidad and Tobago. Some of the participating vessels are interceptors and patrol boats provided to partner nations as part of CBSI’s “Secure Seas” program. The crews of these vessels will train alongside members of the United States Coast Guard and the Royal Canadian Navy, which is also providing a fleet diving team and the Kingston-class maritime patrol vessel HMCS Summerside.

Tropical weather impact this week
Regardless of exactly which low becomes the dominant feature on the weather map, southeastern Mexico, including the Yucatan Peninsula, Guatemala and Belize will become the target of torrential rainfall this week. “Flooding rain and mudslides would be the main impact, with some mountainous areas potentially receiving 10 to 20 inches (250 to 500 mm) of rain this week,” stated Meteorologist Rob Miller. Cities at risk of a soaking include Merida, Belmopan and Guatemala City. Vacationers at the resort cities of Cancun and Chetumal also face an unpleasant stretch of wet weather. “It has already been active across the resort areas on the Yucatan Peninsula due to daily thunderstorms, but the weather will only get worse this week as moisture from the tropical systems comes into play,” Miller continued.


Video: Belize Snorkeling, 7min.
This video is about Belize Snorkeling

Video: Mister Belize Model feria de las culturas amigas 2014, 4min.
Entrevista a Mister Belize Model feria de las culturas amigas 2014

Video: reef dive belize may 2014, 6min.

Video: Belize Aggressor 2014, 6min.
Living Aboard Aggressor Fleet Belize May 2014

Video: Belizian Waterfall Fun, 3min.
For the celebration of Matt and Megan Smith's destination wedding, the guests headed out in an old school bus to a beautiful waterfall in the middle of the Placencia peninsula. Video footage shot with my GoPro Hero 3 - edited with iMovie.

Video: Cruise 2014, 3min.
Shot in Cozumel, Belize, and Roatan Honduras

Video: UF in Belize, 3min.
University of Florida in Belize Field Methods in Ecology and Conservation course recap.

June 1, 2014


Click for our Daily Tropical Weather Report.

Specials and Events

Last night's TV news on Channel 7, Channel 5 and CTV 3
Also with the most recent Open Your Eyes, and the Dickie Bradley Specials

The San Pedro Sun

Be Green with the Belize Recycling Company
22 Recycling in BelizeDid you ever want to responsibly recycle your metal, paper and plastic scraps in San Pedro? Well now you can with The Belize Recycling Company, as the mainland company has an island agent who will buy your recyclable materials on Ambergris Caye. The company was founded in 2005 and incorporates a waste management method designed to reduce the total use of environmental resources by repurposing materials into new products. The Belize Recycling Company purchases metal, plastic and paper, which are then processed into new goods. Paper is converted into 100% recycled toilet paper, napkins and tissue paper, which are then sold as an environmental friendly product. Metals and plastics are cleaned and sold to larger recycling companies in Mexico and the United States of America to be processed and reused. The reuse of these materials reduces the amount of waste ending up in garbage dumps or, sadly, the sea.

Matachica works with Queen’s Health Outreach to educate the Belizean Community
Matachica Resort and Spa has joined the Queen’s Health Outreach (QHO) as a corporate donor to educate the Belizean community on physical, mental and sexual health. QHO is a student-run, non-governmental organization dedicated to promote health through peer education initiatives locally and internationally. The NGO is administered by Queen’s University in Kingston, Ontario, Canada. QHO has been working in Belize since 2011 educating and informing Belizean youth about relevant health issues, in particular the human immunodeficiency virus (HIV). Each year, two separate groups of peer educators conduct health education workshops around the six districts in Belize. The project consists of two phases, the Primary School phase focuses on providing health education to younger children, while the Secondary School phase trains high school students to become peer educators. Some of the key topics addressed by QHO are safe sex practices, puberty, mental health, child abuse, substance abuse and nutrition.

SPTC and Ramon’s Village donate golf carts to the PolyClinic
The Dr Otto Rodriguez San Pedro Polyclinic II was the recipient of two golf carts presented on Friday, May 23rd by representatives of Ramon’s Village Resort. Receiving the donation were senior staff members of the local public health facility. Ramon’s Village Resort Manager Einer Gomez explained the decision of the donation. “Our resort decided to change our fleet of carts and so we approached the San Pedro Town Council (SPTC) with the idea to hand over the carts to them, so that they could donate them to organizations within the community that needed the transportation the most. The SPTC decided to hand them over to the Polyclinic since they were in much need of transportation. The carts are refurbished and in very good condition since they are well maintained and serviced at our resort,” said Gomez.

San Pedro’s talent shines at the Primary School Festival of Arts
On Wednesday May 28th the National Institute of Culture and History, in collaboration with the Ministry of Education, Youth and Sports, hosted the 2014 Primary School Festival of Arts at the Rafael Angel Nunez auditorium. This year’s festival was held under the theme “Create! Express! Excite! Educate!” and a saw series of elaborate presentations from students of San Pedro Town. Performance categories included music, dance, drama, and art, and all were judged by a panel of national stakeholders in each category. Judges for the night were: Kevin Campbell, Cheret Periote, Leroy Green and Dion Williams. Vivacious youngsters took to the stage as the show got underway, showing off their skills through dramatic skits, entertaining dance numbers and instrumental talent. The audience certainly was captivated by the little performers who worked so hard to put on a great show. Participating schools included Ambergris Caye Elementary, Holy Cross Anglican, Isla Bonita Elementary, New Horizon SDA, San Pedro RC, Brighter Tomorrow Preschool, Little Angels Preschool and Ambergris Caye Elementary Preschool.

Congratulations to Sheila Chi, winner of the Miss San Pedro High pageant
Congratulations to Sheila Chi, winner of the Miss San Pedro High pageant held May 31st. Sheila also took the title of Miss Popularity and Miss Photogenic. First Runner-Up is Marisha Thompson.

Misc Belizean Sources

Amidst all the swag, excitement, fun and performances, 16 year old student from Ranchito Village, Corozal Morelia Pop, is the new “QUEEN OF LA VOZ KARAOKE 2014”. 5 performers made it to the finals last night held at Butchie’s Lounge in Orange Walk Town. The coveted title of La Voz Karaoke, sponsored by SMART and L.R. Liquors, of Orange Walk was won by Corozal’s own, Morelia Pop who had always displayed an amazing singing voice. The Corozal Daily wholeheartedly congratulates Morelia and wish her all the best and success in her future endeavours. We also wish to congratulate the hosts, organizers and all the other performers of La Voz Karaoke for doing a spectacular job in this event. Morelia received over 13,000 votes and the grand cash prize of $5,000.00. This is quite an achievement for a young and humble lady. Congratulations once again to Morelia and the entire Pop family of Ranchito Village, Corozal.

The Reporter

Brazil’s economy slows down prior to 2014 World Cup By Marion V. Ali, Staff Reporter Official figures from the Brazilian Institute of Geography and Statistics show that Brazil’s economy grew only 0.2 percent in the first three months of 2014. Business investment fell 2.1 percent in the first three months […]

Four manatees killed in just two days
Four endangered Antillean Manatees were killed in just two days this week when boats traversing in their natural habitats ran over them. The rise in manatee deaths has prompted Jamal Galves, manatee researcher with the Coastal Zone Management Authority and Institute, to appeal with boaters and the Belize Port Authority to address the issue of speeding in no wake zones. “All of these incidents occurred in no wake zones, where boaters are required by law to reduce their speed. The cases are all just signs of neglect,” Galves said, “and they could have been avoided if they had just slowed down.” Belize has the largest population of endangered Antillean Manatees in the world; however with the recent deaths, that population is now less than 1000. “Efforts are needed by all Belizeans in order to reduce the amount of injuries and deaths due to collisions. I’m asking boaters to respect the law and the Belize Port Authority to do what they can to enforce it”, Galves said.

Customs officer killed in traffic accident
Frank Robinson, 51, a customs officer of Belize City died in a traffic accident shortly after 3 p.m. on Thursday between miles two and three on the George Price Highway. Robinson, who was reportedly driving a grey Isuzu D-Max pickup just past the Lord’s Ridge Cemetery was making a left turn when a 10 wheel dump-truck traveling immediately behind him slammed into the driver’s side of the pickup. According to Martin Burke, 48, the driver of the dump truck, it happened so suddenly that he could do nothing to prevent the accident. Burke said that Robinson turned suddenly and there were passengers on the shoulder of the road, preventing him from swerving. He he has been served with a notice of intended prosecution.

Armed robbery at First Choice Pharmacy
Thieves reportedly held up First Choice Pharmacy on Cemetery Road in Belize City on Saturday night. The Reporter has learned that shots were fired during the robbery shortly after 7 p.m. but we have not been able to confirm any injuries. The thieves, our information suggests, escaped with an undisclosed amount of money.

Caye Caulker Chronicles

Caye Caulker walks for cancer
In what has become an annual tribute to honor those suffering from cancer, and the memory of those who have passed, Caye Caulker walks. At 5 a.m., the walkers gathered at the airstrip. Ms Enelda Rosado gave a beautiful prayer. The crowd of about 30 persons then walked through the village until they ended up at the central park around 6:15 a.m. Once at the park, the crowd broke bread and shared breakfast. The meal consisted of powder bun, bread rolls, sandwiches, and coffee. It is hoped that these walks would bring awareness to this disease which affects so many people The walk is meant to inspire people who are living with cancer, but also to express the hope that a cure will be found.

The Belize Times

Economy Slumps!!! – Barrow drives Belize to the reef!
Belize’s economy under the Barrow Administration contracted in the first quarter of the year, according to the latest data presented by the Statistical Institute of Belize (SIB) on Wednesday, May 28th 2014. “We see a slight dip in the economy in the first quarter when compared to the same period of last year of roughly 0.4%," stated Director of SIB Glen Avilez. This deceleration, which follows an entire year (2013) of dismal economic performance, indicates that there has been absolutely no effort by the Government to boost the country’s economic state in 2014. SIB’s research shows that the economic slump was due to a weak agriculture sector and tumbling oil exports. The agriculture sector is on life support. Production of Bananas, Citrus and Sugar fell by almost 10%. Sugar production dipped the most as a result of a two-month impasse between the new owners of the factory and cane farmers over the sharing of bagasse profits. It is unlikely that sugar production will recover in the 2nd quarter because of the start of the rainy season. Rice, which was always known as a traditional industry, is no longer in the picture as the Barrow Administration has successfully decimated that small sector. The SIB noted that over the agriculture sector suffered a 30% or $26 million loss in the first quarter. The petroleum industry, on which the Barrow Administration has anchored their Budget, has been decelerating fast. Crude oil production has fallen from 221,000 barrels of oil in the first quarter in 2013, to 170,000 barrels in 2014. It also fell by more than half since 2010, when production peaked to 385,000 barrels. “

PUP Statement on Passing of Hon. Marcial Mes
The People’s United Party records its profound sadness on the passing of the Hon. Marcial Mes. Hon. Mes served as the duly elected Representative for Toledo West from 1998 to 2008 and served in the administration of Prime Minister Said Musa as Minister of Rural Development and Culture. Marcial Mes was the first full Mayan Belizean to serve in the Cabinet and will be long remembered by our Party and the people of Southern Belize for his dedicated efforts to bring water, electricity, education, and healthcare to many of the most remote rural communities in Belize.

PUP Leader condemns statements of Minister of State Mark King
The People’s United Party condemns in the strongest possible terms the ignorant and arrogant comments of Minister of State Hon. Mark King which were reported on last evening’s newscasts. These comments describe a patronage system of spoils in which the UDP are ranked 1st, the Belizean people 2nd, and the PUP 3rd. Regrettably, these comments are consistent with the words and actions of the entire UDP Government under the leadership of Prime Minister Dean Barrow. In 2014, the PUP recognize and understand that there must be a NEW STANDARD which requires that all Belizeans, regardless of political persuasion, be treated fairly, respectfully, and equitably.

Paid in Shillings…but Brother B Wants More!
On Tuesday morning Edmond Castro’s attorney, Denys Barrow, was paid with almost 10,000 shillings held inside two pillow cases by Belize Rural North constituent Trevor Vernon. The shillings were valued at $2,489.50 and delivered to his lofty Coney Drive law firm by Vernon as payment towards the $5,000 court cost involved in the Supreme Court case against Castro. But it was not enough for Barrow. The attorney/brother of Prime Minister Barrow was apparently irked by Vernon’s actions and he applied to the Court for a writ of execution which was granted to him. With this writ, Barrow instructed a Supreme Court bailiff to travel to Burrell Boom and find Trevor Vernon’s house on Wednesday. Once there, the bailiff identified Vernon’s belongings to be sold off by the Court if he is unable to pay the remaining $2,510.50 within five days.

UDP Hegemony
Unfortunately, it is a lesson that seems to have eluded those politicians currently governing Belize. In a statement last Thursday evening, Minister of State Mark King publicly acknowledged that his government is engaged in political favoritism. King proudly proclaimed that whenever he has goods and services to deliver, it is “UDP first, Belizeans second and PUP’s last.” When it was pointed out to him on facebook that people were taking offense he retorted, “I know what I said, I meant what I said and there will be no retraction”. King’s comments were endorsed and defended by no less than Godwin Hulse who offered this sentiment, “It can’t be that you have a UDP government…and all the jobs are going to PUP supporters who will reap the benefit – it can’t be”. According Hulse, “we are in a political climate and that has to be understood”. Interestingly enough, Godwin Hulse was at the top of his voice for years, screaming that this very “political climate” had to be changed. Of course, he was not then “a part of the team”, or at least he led us to believe that he wasn’t. He certainly was not openly reaping the handsome financial gains that come with inclusion to that very powerful and exclusive “team”. Hulse went on to explain that “Let us be real here, we are in a real world, in a country, in a real political system – when the PUP people gets the job, if they were to get all the jobs they will give the credit to their representative. Their representatives when they win the government if they do win they will be the one benefiting. Our people have a right to say but Jesus Christ, how come we didn’t even know? How nobody didn’t fixed it up?”

Heading to the Reef!
“Listen to me, when you see that group together, Esquivel, Net Vasquez and what is the next one?…Barrow…stay away from them. Take my advice. Anytime you see that group together. They have never yet been able to take Belize through a five year period without landing us on the reef. They have never yet been able to take us through a five year period without landing us on the reef and that is exactly where we are heading right now.” – Hubert Elrington – September 29, 2009 It is that classic statement by H. Elrington that will always remind us of the danger which the UDP is to Belize. True to his words, during the past six years of the Dean Barrow regime, Belizeans have experienced a terrible deterioration in their way of life and standard of living. Belize has been landed on the reef. Week after week, month after month, the price of food and household items at the grocery shops and supermarkets rose higher and higher. Wages for workers have gone no where. The last time wages went up, was under a PUP Government. This dire situation went from bad to worse. The health of the people was the first victim. NHI was suspended and even the primary care benefits offered during the PUP administration were severely cut back. The UDP finally decided to give life to NHI but now we see what the true purpose was, as reports of the mishandling of funds to the tune of hundreds of thousands are rearing their ugly heads.

Team Digicell 4G won Weekend Warriors’ Sand Hill race
Team Digicell 4G’s Robert Mariano won the “A” Division, Isaiah Willacey won the “B” Division and Steve Yearwood won the “C” division of the Weekend Warriors Sand Hill race on Sunday, May 25. The A and B division rode 50 miles from Leslie’s Imports on the George Price Highway, via the Hattieville to Burrell Boom bypass road to the Philip Goldson Highway to the turning point at Garbutt’s farm at mile 25, and back, finishing in front of the Sand Hill community center, while the C division rode the 34 miles directly to Sand Hill.

Ladyville Rising Stars lead SMART Mundialito
The undefeated Ladyville Rising Stars are No. 1 and undefeated in the 2014 SMART Mundialito as they went on to defeat Third World on Saturday. Meanwhile the London Strikers upset the defending champs Brown Bombers 1-0 at the MCC Garden. The Strikers toppled Brown Bombers 1-0 with a goal by 2nd half substitute Jose Castellanos. The City Boys blasted Mundialito rookies, Height FC, 2-0 with goals by Denzel Carr and Maynor Batiz, both in the 1st half.

BES wins Belize District volleyball championships
Belize Elementary School girls and boys are the undisputed 2014 Belize District Volleyball primary school champions. They were undefeated throughout the competition. The female team won over the Holy Redeemer School girls 25-12 and 25-10 on Tuesday, May 27, to secure their 4th district championship. In the boys’ final, the BES boys won over Crooked Tree Government School 25-14 and 25-20. BES is now preparing for the nationals which will be held in Belize on Friday, June 6.

Another Pharmacy SCANDAL – George Gough’s connection to four (4) Belize Pharmacies
Dean Barrow’s hand-picked man for the NHI is George Gough, a former UDP standard bearer. Over the past few weeks the bombshell revelation of widespread corruption in the Ministry of Health has brought the Minister and his CEO under blazing fire and public condemnation. George Gough, a man who collects thousands of dollars to chair the NHI also sits as chair of the pharmaceutical tendering committee. So he decides who gets to bring in all the medical drugs and supplies into Belize. There are four pharmacies that have come under suspicion by the various medical associations (1) Buttonwood Bay Pharmacy, (2) Brown Sugar Pharmacy, (3) Ladyville Pharmacy, and (4) Cross Road (Freetown) Pharmacy. Now, not a single Belizean believes that health CEO Peter Allen would attempt to investigate the connection that George Goff has to these pharmacies.

Belizean Artists on the Rise
Making a United Stand for a Better Cultural & Entertainment Industry in Belize We hereby invite all Belizean Entertainers, artists, djs, studio owners, producers, promoters and the general public to a peaceful demonstration to be held on Friday, the 30th of May, 2014 at 1:00 p.m. at Battlefield Park in Downtown Belize City. From Battlefield Park our demonstration will move down Albert Street, then unto Regent and King Street, ending at the Bliss Center for the Performing Arts. This demonstration offers us, as artists, the opportunity to vocally express our concerns over the neglect, the disrespect, the inequity and the injustice faced in an industry that should be managed, promoted and enhanced by us, the artists. Through this protest, we will first demand the removal of our current musical ambassador who has, by all accounts, failed to properly represent our industry both locally and internationally.

Celebrating Our Bright Minds! – Featuring: St. Catherine’s Academy, Belize High, Canaan SDA High and Ladyville Technical High
St. Catherine’s Academy will have their graduation on Saturday, May 31st, 2014 at the Ramada Princess Hotel in Belize City. According to Principal Ms. Salome Tillett, 121 out of 127 students will take that march down those isles. The Valedictorian is 17-year-old Ms. Lina Huang (with a grade average of 98. 1%), the Salutatorian is 15-year-old Ms. Anita Wu (with a Grade Average of 97.2%), and the 3rd place will be 16-year-old Ms. Maria J. Martinez (with a Grade Average of 95.6%). The BELIZE TIMES managed, in the harried midst of their preparations for Graduation, to secure an interview with the top three at the Hudson Street campus on Wednesday. The trio, all representing the class of 4SG (Science/General) are young by age, but certainly mature by spirit. They have not only navigated the 4-year ‘rollercoaster’ called high school, but also survived and even thrived and exceeded the highest of heights to stand where they are today.

Maslow’s Needs, Philanthropy, and Status Symbols
Abraham Harold Maslow, in 1954, theorized that there are five interdependent levels of basic human needs (or motivators). The first, most pressing, and lowest needs on the list are the physiological needs to stay alive with food and water, to reproduce, and to feel safe and secure. No other need is important if these basic needs are not met. They are followed by social needs for love, belonging, self-esteem, to feel worthy, respected, and to have status in society. At the highest level are self-actualization needs of self-fulfilment and achievement. Belize’s socialites, led by “First Lady” Mrs. Kim Simplis Barrow provide a good case study at the level of Maslow’s social needs for love, belonging, self-esteem, the need to feel respected and to have social and celebrity status. Modern socialites have an insatiable need for status, and philanthropy is the new status symbol. According to The New York Times, socialites spend between $98,000 (U.S. dollars) and $455,000 U.S. per year to maintain their roles. Just the evening wardrobe of an individual regularly attending society functions can cost $100,000 annually. Most times these designer clothes and handbags are made in sweatshops overseas, by women and children, denied living wages.

If the unadulterated trash that came out of the mouth of UDP representative Mark King was not such a serious and callous statement, we would consider it another episode of his usual crude comedy. But the truth is that his “UDPs first, Belizeans second, PUPs last” comment hit a nerve in all right-thinking Belizeans who thought they had seen and heard the worst of the UDP with the likes of Gaspar “Not Normal” Vega, Pablo “KHMH Babies” Marin and Elvin “Passport” Penner. The truth is, also, that King was speaking first as a UDP area representative and then on behalf of his Leader – reiterating a position that Dean Barrow had already publicly declared at the start of his term in 2008 when he stated that “to the victor goes the spoils”, later followed by his defense of the mass firings in the Ministry of Education and his warning that there will be cases of “collateral damage” because “it is our turn”.

Every week, almost every day, we are hearing of more and more instances of corruption and the abuse of public trust and misuse of public funds. It is quite dismaying, and often it is difficult to seek and to find good things that are happening in our communities. Last week I received an invitation from Ladyville Technical High School to attend a Luncheon that was held to celebrate the school’s first place finish in the Innovation Challenge that took place recently. I was happy to RSVP right away, as I have visited the school, its Principal, faculty and students and the campus as a whole. I have been very impressed. At around midday on Thursday, May 22nd in the school’s dining hall a sumptuous meal was served to the successful students, faculty, a few parents and the other invited guests. The cooks and servers were all staff and students of the catering and hospitality programs. Also in attendance was chairman of Ladyville Tech’s Board of Directors, Mr. Mariano Williams. We greatly enjoyed an appetizer, full meal, dessert and an original natural fruit juice created by the students themselves, and we were welcomed by Principal Diane Wesby. Thereafter, teacher Louis Underwood described the waste management project that the winning students had put together and presented as their winning entry. The participating students, whose names I am very proud to mention, are Ryan Staine, Malachi Everett, Gina Barnett, Sarkis Flowers and Kevaughn Vasquez. They also spoke about the project and how they created it with the guidance of Mr. Underwood. All those in attendance congratulated the students themselves and their mentors, as well as Principal Wesby, Vice Principal Ardeth Rudon and the staff on a job well done.

The comments made by UDP Minister of State Mark King last week declaring that UDP’s come first, Belizeans second, and PUP’s last are not shocking to anyone who has seen and heard king during his brief and insignificant time in public life. He is loud, arrogant, brutish, and mainly just ignorant. Nevertheless, we should not simply dismiss these comments because they came from king. No, the truth is that king’s comments reflect the thinking of Prime Minister Dean Barrow and the entire UDP Cabinet. From the beginning of his tenure as PM, Barrow essentially declared “to the victor the spoils” and has largely supported the view that it is “UDP time fu eat”. This is the mindset of the present UDP administration. Politics above all else. Only UDP’s must benefit. Only UDP’s are good enough to get a job, to own land, to get scholarships, to get a boost. Only UDP mothers matter on Mother’s Day.

UDP scavengers land on NCL deal – Godwin Hulse says UDPS must get jobs
Sources have told the BELIZE TIMES that Norwegian Cruise Line officials are angry at the Barrow Government for sending an official team of UDP scavengers to demand that only UDPs should be getting jobs from their project. The head scavenger has turned out to be no other than sanctimonious Godwin Hulse who leads the UDP Cabinet Subcommittee on Investment. Hulse was instructed by the UDP National Party Council to summon NCL officials to a meeting with all UDP standard bearers from the South. Those standard bearers have been complaining that NCL was not treating them properly and their people “were not eating”. Using their authority of being in Government, the UDP have demanded that NCL officials inform UDP Standard Bearers first of any vacancies and that once their people they apply – those applications must be given priority. This is how scavengers are. Mark King has done everything possible to get a deal for his private security company. Another Minister wants to build all the fences. One UDP bigwig, whose family already benefitted from the deal, wants his dredging company involved. When asked whether the UDP was practising favouritism, Hulse disagreed saying this is how things work in the “real political system”.

Slavery and Homosexuality, No Comparison!
Dear Editor, In trying to make their case for the promotion of the homosexual lifestyle, some advocates have been equating the “circumstances” of homosexuals to that of the enslavement of Black people and the subsequent post-slavery discrimination. This is perhaps one of the greatest insults to Black people everywhere–heterosexual, homosexual or otherwise! The enslavement of Black people is the single greatest crime against humanity and one for which Europe is yet to make recompense. To hear advocates of the homosexual agenda trivialize it, as they have been doing as of late, must outrage every Black person in Belize and indeed the world. Black people and homosexuals are not similarly circumstanced! Homosexuals have never been captured, chained and transported thousands of miles away from their homeland and enslaved for centuries! They have never been sold like chattels. They have never been deprived of their culture: their language, their food, their religion. They have never been made to work like beasts of burden for meager rations and without proper compensation. They have never been beaten and killed at the whims of their masters, and with impunity. They have never had their women raped and impregnated–their race diluted.

Welcome Uncle Sam… but!
America has morphed from super hero of liberation and freedom to colonizing bully. Friday after next, 6th June, will mark the 70th Anniversary of D-Day. On 6th June, 1944, youthful Americans stormed the beaches of Normandy, France, to free Europe from the clutches of German Nazi terror and tyranny. Glorious young warriors waded, landed defying death, conquered, rebuilt and then left. I was only 6 years old and could not then comprehend the full meaning of what America was doing and did for humanity. As an adult I have prayed that what America had done would last forever as the most powerful monument of man’s everlasting hunger for freedom. A half decade or so passed, and much of my time was consumed watching cowboy movies. I became enchanted by the unselfish heroism portrayed in such movies as Shane. This is the story of a converted gun-fighter who stops by and decides to stay to work on a family farm. Their security is threatened by a big farmer bent on devouring all the small farmers, with the help of bullying gunslingers. Shane changes back to his farmer ways of settling conflicts by violence to preserve this wholesome family of father, mother, and son. The story ends with him riding off into the sunset after a gunfight in which he dispatches all the gunslingers. But he was wounded, and you don’t know if he will survive.

Peter Allen Must Go!
Dear Editor, It is past time for Dr. Peter Allen to clear his desk and resign. But he must not take the cabinet and computer files and desk notes nor shred them. There has been scandal after scandal and Allen has been in the thick of it. Just imagine… 13 babies dead at KHMH, damning Auditor General’s reports, financial wrongdoing, political manipulation of the health system, and more. As a layman, I feel that there is too much conspiracy, deception and outright dishonesty from those at the top of the Ministry of Health. Clearly, the health of our people is not their priority. I believe many heads should roll along with Dr. Peter Allen’s. Incompetence has taken over the Ministry. They mask it with propaganda and by keeping things ‘hush hush’. There is another such case. Within the last two months two young male breadwinners have had both their legs amputated because of negligence. The first guy was taken to KHMH for injuries to his leg from an accident. He was later transferred to a private hospital and had his leg amputated because of poor medical attention and care. In the other case, the young man had surgery done on his leg at the KHMH. He later returned to KHMH because his leg’s condition worsened.

Patrick Jones

Annual Cancer Walk raises awareness and funds
The annual Cancer Walk concluded in Belize City this morning after thousands of Belizeans ran, rode, and marched from Celina’s in Ladyville to the Cancer Society’s Office on Mercy Lane to promote cancer awareness. Over 2,000 men and women, some cancer survivors, others friends and family of cancer patients or even those who simply wanted to be part, left at 5:00 a.m. and the first finishers entered the City about an hour to an hour and a half later. Many of those we spoke to said they are making efforts to increase their own awareness about diet and lifestyle issues which may be factors in controlling cancer. The Society raised funds through its sale of t-shirts and advertising to commercial sponsors. Two persons were recognized for individual contributions, including Belizean-American Monica Tucker, who singlehandedly raised US$10,000 for the Society.

Flowers Bank hosts Creole Festival
On June 1, 1797, a vote that changed the course of Belizean history took place. An assembly of settlers was asked to vote on whether to evacuate the settlement against the advancing Spanish fleet sailing from Mexico, or stay and fight to preserve it. The vote was 65 to 51 in favour of staying, the deciders being a group of 12 free black men and 2 whites living at what is now Flowers Bank Village. A monument in their honor was dedicated some time ago and their courageous decision is annually memorialized at the Flowers Bank Creole Festival, which kicked off today. Highlights include a reenactment of the final decision in Belize Town performed by the Veranda Tales Theater Group managed by Joseph Stamp Romero. Speakers included former area representative and historian Fred Hunter and current representative Edmond Castro; Kriol activist and archivist Myrna Manzanares and visiting Venezuelan Ambassador to Belize Yoel Perez Marcano. All spoke of the need to keep the distinctive cultures of Belize and the accomplishments of our ancestors constant in the memory.

Man murdered in San Pedro early this morning
A shooting incident early this morning in San Pedro town has claimed the life of one person. The victim has been identified as 49 year old Alfred Kelvin. The shooting happened around 2 am in the San Juan area of San Pedro town. Kelvin, according to reports, was walking on Seaweed Street around 2 am when someone fired a single gunshot, fatally wounding Kelvin in the right eye. A police source says there is so far no leads and no motive for the fatal early morning murder and authorities are appealing to the general public for assistance in solving this crime. Police investigations continue.

Rainy weather for the weekend
Moist and unstable conditions are dominant factors in our weather this weekend. The general forecast for Belize and her coastal waters is for mostly cloudy skies. Showers and thunderstorms now occurring inland will move to the coast tonight and tomorrow morning. Winds are easterly to southeasterly at ten to twenty knots, with occasional higher gusts. The sea state is choppy to moderate, becoming rough at times. Operators of small craft should exercise caution in rough seas. High temperature this afternoon will range from the mid-eighties along the coast to the upper-eighties inland. It will be a comfortable seventy eight degrees Fahrenheit up in the hills.

Belize Economy at a Glance for First Quarter 2014
Historically, the first quarter for Belize has been the most important….principally because it is the peak period for our largest income earner tourism. First quarter imports in 2013 were $580 million…..just over 31% of total imports for that year of $1.856 billion. First quarter exports in 2013 were $249.1 million….just over 39% of total domestic exports of $627.5 million. Therefore, when the first quarter goes well… is good news for the economy. First quarter imports for 2014 were reported at $602 million….an increase of 3.8% over 2013. Exports for the same period were reported at $204.6 million….a decrease of around 18%. We had better make hay while the sun shines…..and grow tourism by leaps and bounds to make up for this growing visible trade gap.


San Pedro, Belize to Cancun Airport: You’ve Got Options, Almost Too Many
About a month or so ago, I booked a trip to the states for a visit. After the Chocolate Festival in Punta Gorda, before the three lobster festivals in Belize (Ambergris Caye, Caye Caulker and Placencia), the first few weeks of June were the perfect time slot. And, as usual, the flights departing from Cancun were SIGNIFICANTLY cheaper than those out of Belize International Airport. $300US vs. $800US cheaper. It was an easy choice. And I’d done it quite a few times before… I’ve taken the easiest direct route – the beautiful Tropic Air flight from Cancun Airport to Belize City. Bliss but definitely more pricey. I swore to myself I would NEVER get on that overnight bus from Belize City again. So a friend suggested a way to mix things up. A way to break things up that sounded much more appealing. Here is how I left San Pedro at 3pm Thursday and arrived in Providence, Rhode Island at 10pm Friday. Just that time span probably just gave many of you goosebumps (or in Belize – da cold seed) but it wasn’t that bad. REALLY. 1. 3pm. The Thunderbolt Water Taxi from San Pedro to Corozal, Belize. 2hrs. $50bzd. Daily service. Departs from the lagoon side of the caye, just south of the new Water Taxi Terminals. 2. Corozal Bus to the Belize Mexico Border. $2bzd. The local bus comes every 30 minutes and drives you to the Belize Immigrations and Customs building at the border. You really can’t beat the price. The exit fee for non-Belize citizens and residents is $37.50bzd. 3. Walk Across the Border to Mexico (about a 10-15 minute walk over the Rio Hondo Bridge) You can grab a Mexican taxi about halfway into your walk…as soon as you are technically in no man’s land. I just walked on through. Throughout this trip, I was glad that I packed lightly. 4. Grab a border taxi to The Chetumal Mall – Las Americas $70 peso (about $6US/$12bzd) The bus to Cancun leaves about every hour. But I’m taking the midnight bus so I can sleep and arrive in Cancun at dawn. I’ve got about 5 hours to fill so…to the mall! 5. ADO Bus from Chetumal to Cancun, Midnight, 5.5 hours, $360 pesos ($30US/$60BZD) Adios Chicken buses, adios Chetumal bus station Mary, ADO has proper HUGE buses with comfy seats and CRAZY COLD air conditioning. Why so cold ADO? Why? 6. 8am. ADO Aeropuerto Bus from Cancun Downtown Bus Station to Airport $60 pesos ($5US/$10bzd) 45 minute bus trip to my airport terminal. Check in with United. Pay no exit fees since I just arrived in Mexico the evening before. No additional fees since I am all carry-on.

Sunday June 1 power outtage on Ambergris Caye cancelled
Postponed until further notice: power interruption previously scheduled for entire San Pedro, Ambergris Caye 7:00am to 3:00pm on Sunday, June 1.

Horseback riding at the Mayan Ruins of Xunantunich, Belize
As I approached the horse stable, the first thing that came to my attention was the majestic Mayan ruins of Xunantunich as they overlooked me from above. “Be prepared for the journey of a lifetime”, my British guide said. Little I knew back then that the road less traveled is often the most dangerous one. The Mayan ruins of Xunantunich are the highlight of the Cayo region of Belize and are easily reachable from the town of San Ignacio (or as a vary long day trip from Belize’s Caribbean side). Once you’re at San Ignacio, you can either take a taxi or a horse to the ferry crossing before reaching the Mayan ruins. I guess you can already guess which option I chose. You can either book your horse ride via your hotel/hostel or do so directly at the stables found a few minutes away from San Ignacio. The price is almost the same (70 USD) but you can use your bargaining skills to get a killer deal during low season. Tours often start early in the morning and during mid-day.

International Sources

14 Google Search Tricks That Make Life A Whole Lot Easier
Learn to be a googling monkey. You think you know how to Google? You don't know how to Google. Even the most seasoned Googler might not know every tip and trick available with just a few extra keystrokes in the search bar. Consider this your instructions manual for the world's most popular search engine. Search For Related Words The Scenario: You want to search for "alternative energy." But you know that phrase has a number of synonyms, like "renewable energy," and you want to search for all of them. The Solution: Put the worm-like tilde (~) in front of the search term for which you would like related results. Exclude Certain Words The Scenario: You want bread recipes that don't list "yeast" as an ingredient. The Solution: After you enter your desired search terms, add a minus sign (-) followed by the words you want excluded.

“The Savage Line”
Belize and Belize’s very own head archaeologist Dr. Jaime Awe and his team highlighted on the latest National Geographic Channel’s new series “The Savage Line:” National Geographic Channel’s new series “The Savage Line” examines the hazardous jobs of individuals who navigate nature’s most unpredictable landscapes and protect humans whose interests lie within grasp of dangerous elements of the natural world. Their trade takes them deep into the wild to protect livelihoods that depend on keeping dangerous animals out – archeologists at a snake-infested dig site, wild life photographers attempting to get close to wild bison. In order to make these things happen, these men must become non-lethal hunters and observers, tracking animals in different ways to keep their subjects safe. Although techniques and methods change depending on species, weather, and time of day, certain skills are vital. It’s key to understand what you’re tracking, which is more difficult than it sounds, particularly in complex ecosystems. Size, shape, and spacing between tracks can help do this. For example, one can tell a dog from a bobcat by ensuring that the print has nail marks and toes, signature parts of the dog trail mark largely absent from the bobcat trail. The gait, or how the animal walks, allows a professional tracker to predict where an animal is headed. This is extremely important, as not each track will be visible, and it’s sometimes necessary to imagine where the animal may have gone, and it will be easier to pick up the trail.

‘At the Point of a Cutlass’ by Gregory N. Flemming
Philip Ashton was a real-life Robinson Crusoe. A Marblehead fisherman who sailed on schooners out of his hometown in search of cod, Ashton was captured in the early 1720s by Edward Low, one of the nastiest pirates who ever sailed the seas — he was known to roast the hearts of his victims over an open fire when he wasn’t forcing victims to consume their own charred ears. Ashton made a daring escape and survived, alone, on a desert island for nearly two years. Shirtless and shoeless, Ashton had neither knife nor gun nor way to build a fire. Utterly alone, he scraped by largely on fruit until he learned how to fish and cook some of his food. Circumstance forced Ashton to adjust. He wandered the island, scavenging for fruit. Working from Ashton’s recollections, Flemming reconstructs what must have been an excruciatingly solitary existence. But it was better than being in Low’s hands. “This wilderness,” Ashton recalled, “I looked upon as hospitable, and this loneliness as good company, compared with the state and society I was now happily delivered from.” Ashton spent his days on a small cay, cooled by ocean breezes, staring out to sea. His day-to-day routine was monotonous, but he was alive and free. A stranger briefly appeared in a canoe, then disappeared. Some 16 months passed before Ashton was back in the company of people. Rugged woodcutters, who harvested timber from Belize for British markets, found the frail, wizened escapee. He lived with these so-called “Baymen” — rough and tumble fellows though marginally less dangerous than pirates — for a time until he encountered a group of British ships, blown off course by a storm, and secured a passage home.

Eastern Pacific May Yield Gulf of Mexico Tropical Concerns
Tropical troubles brewing in the eastern Pacific may lead to concerns in the Gulf and far northwestern Caribbean soon after the official start to the Atlantic hurricane season. meteorologists are monitoring an area south of Mexico, in the eastern Pacific, for a new tropical storm to take shape over the next few days. It is possible that the system's energy could then slowly fuel tropical development in the Atlantic Basin in the days that follow. Hurricane season in the Atlantic Basin officially commences on June 1. After bringing the threat of flooding rain to southern Mexico and neighboring Central America, energy from the system is likely to reach the southern Gulf of Mexico or the far northwestern Caribbean during the latter part of next week. "The environment that we are seeing unfolding across the Gulf of Mexico and far northwestern Caribbean for next week would cause any tropical feature to move slowly and support possible slow development," stated Meteorologist Rob Miller.

UWI Buggered Bain Case
Jamaicans are being fed a steady diet of mealy-mouthed commentary on Brendan Bain's misfortune thinly disguised as 'balance'. Only Jeff Cobham put the episode in correct perspective. Even he fumbled the ball on the goal line, thus wasting excellent reasoning. At least he didn't obfuscate. In his May 26, 2014 letter to the editor, Jeff included all contexts and nuances. It deserves repeating as fulsomely as The Gleaner's oppressive word count police allow: "1. Since the launch of USAID's HIV/AIDS programme ... , the agency has been on the forefront of the global AIDS crisis. 2. That agency's position is ... as ... expressed by UN Secretary General Ban Ki-moon in 2009: "Shine the full light of human rights on HIV. I urge all countries to remove punitive laws, policies, and practices that hamper the AIDS response. In many countries, legal frameworks institutionalise discrimination against groups most at risk. Yet, discrimination ... only fuels the epidemic and prevents cost-effective interventions. We must ensure that AIDS responses are based on evidence, not ideology ... ."


Video: Belize Youth Support Network (BYSN) visits Liberty Children's Home, 3.5min.
Belize Youth Support Network (BYSN) making connections and visiting Liberty Children's Home, Belize. Meeting and greeting staff and learning about the good work of the home.

Video: Garifuna Collective: „Welcome to Belize when you're ready" (Interview auf Englisch), 6min.
Garifuna Collective weckt die Reiselust nach Belize. In dem kleinen mittelamerikanischen Land leben neben zahlreichen anderen Volksgruppen auch die Garifuna, die stolz auf ihre afrikanischen Wurzeln sind. Ihre Kultur, Sprache und musikalische Traditionen aber sind bedroht. Die Band hat es sich zur Aufgabe gemacht, die Garifuna-Kultur in Belize zu bewahren und sie in der ganzen Welt bekannt zu machen. Sie sieht sich aber auch als Vorbote der anderen Kulturen des kleinen mittelamerikanischen Landes:

Video: UNDERWATER IN BELIZE - Shark Video, 3min.
Sharks and sting rays everywhere! Sometimes words just aren't enough! Amazing scuba and snorkeling in Belize off of Caye Caulker, Feb. 2014.

Video: Once Upon an Island: Secret Caribbean, Pt.1 - Preview, 6min.
Hosted by famous French sailor and filmmaker, Antoine, this is Part 1 of a 2-part grand tour of the Caribbean Sea that covers 30 cruising destinations that lie off the beaten track. In Part 1, voyage from Guadeloupe’s outer islands, north through the southern French Antilles, then on to Puerto Rico, Cuba, Roatan, the Bay Islands of Honduras, the secluded atolls of Belize concluding with a dramatic fly-over outer atolls of extensive reefs where lies the Blue Hole, a major geological wonder of the Caribbean. Purchase Part Two (52-minutes) and continue with Antoine on his grand tour of the Caribbean Sea.

Video: Bryan and Lisa's honeymoon videos, 31min.
Belize honeymoon pictures

Video: Lisa and Bryan's honeymoon in Belize, 19min.
Bryan and Lisa Guidry's honeymoon in Belize in May, 2014.

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