Recent Belize News
10/11/2016 to 10/20/2016
Click here to return to
Today's Belize News

October 20, 2016


FOR TODAY'S BELIZE WEATHER, CLICK HERE

Click for our Daily Tropical Weather Report.

Specials and Events

Last night's TV news on Channel 7, Channel 5, LOVETV, PGTV, West Vision (Cayo) and CTV 3. Also with the most recent Open Your Eyes, Rise and Shine Morning Show, and the Dickie Bradley Specials


The San Pedro Sun

Belize Coalition to Save Our Natural Heritage calls for EIA for Offshore Seismic Survey
The Belize Coalition to Save Our Natural Heritage has called on the Government of Belize (GOB) to first conduct an Environmental Impact Assessment (EIA) for a proposed multi-beam and seismic line survey for hydrocarbon seepage in Belize’s deep seas outside the Barrier Reef. Members of the Coalition voiced their concerns about the proposed survey and the haste with which GOB is commencing the survey at a press conference at BAS headquarters in Belize City on Wednesday morning, October 19. Oceana Belize Vice president Janelle Chanona criticized the haste with which GOB is proceeding to commence the survey; which she sees as the first step towards offshore oil drilling, which would threaten Belize’s tourism and fisheries industries. Chanona said the Belizean public should first be made fully aware of the survey, the way how it will be done, the potential impacts on the environment, and the potential, probable uses for the information gathered by the survey.

Leaked documents confirm business relationship between John Saldivar and Danny Mason
After the controversy involving William “Danny” Mason, and the beheading of Pastor Llewellyn Lucas in July 2016, the Government of Belize (GOB) has been accused of having ties with Mason. Despite much denial from several government officials, a leaked document released on October 17th revealed the business relationship between Minister of Defense John Saldivar and Mason, the accused murderer. In a press release issued on Tuesday, October 18th, the Barrow Administration announced that Saldivar was placed on a one-week leave of absence. Saldivar previously reported that he had accepted $50,000 from Mason as a contribution to his Belmopan Bandits football team. He stated that was the extent of their business relationship and claimed that he has disassociated himself with Mason since September 2015 after learning of Mason’s “unsavory” past.

Gaspar Vega resigns from Cabinet following land scandal
Gaspar VegaAfter the recent land scam revelation involving Former Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Natural Resources and Minister of Agriculture, Honorable Gaspar Vega, has resigned from Cabinet. In a meeting held in Belize City on Monday, October 17th, Prime Minister Right Honorable Dean Barrow confirmed and accepted Vega’s resignation. Last week, evidence surfaced showing that Vega, who was the Minister of Lands at the time, authorized the sale of a 2.75 acre, seafront prime property near Mile 5 on the Philip Goldson Highway land. In 2011, Attorney Sharon Pitts applied for permission to survey the entire parcel, but it was discovered that the land had been privately owned since 1988. Through a directive from Minister Gaspar Vega, who was previously informed that the land was private property, Pitts was granted a title for 1.626 acres of that private property, and paid $10,569. In January 2013, the remaining 1.057 acres was then given by Minister Gaspar Vega to his business associate, Hilmar Alamilla, who only paid $2,500. However, in December 2013, Alamilla sold the parcel of land for $15,000 to Minister Vega’s son Andre Antonio Vega, and he became the titleholder of that parcel of land.

Ambergris Today

Wavemakers of the Year Awarded to iTravel Belize and The Phoenix Belize
On Saturday October 15, 2016, men, women, and students from across the country gathered at the George Price Center in Belmopan City to partake in the Oceana Wavemaker Annual General Meeting (AGM). At the meeting, Oceana recognized two 2016 Wavemakers of Year, both from the island of San Pedro, Ambergris Caye. The family of travel bloggers: Dorian, Amber, and Madison, which make up the iTravel Belize team was awarded for their dedication to discovering and boasting about Belize’s richly rewarding experiences that make it unlike any country on the planet. The Phoenix Belize was also awarded for their continuous community efforts involving toy drives, donations, scholarships, fundraising for different causes and charities, and of course their weekly beach clean-ups helping to protect and preserve Belize’s marine resources. During the event, several Wavemakers were awarded certificates of appreciation for their sensational support for Oceana’s campaigns and initiatives over the past year.

Misc Belizean Sourcesmzz

Dog needing home on Caye Caulker
Gizmo is a 6-month old pitt bull mix who was rescued after the hurricane and is now ready to find his forever home. He loves to play! His favorite activities are playing fetch in the ocean, playing with toys, children and other dogs and then taking long naps. He is healthy, happy, loving and smart. Great with children and other dogs. Doesn't know cats but is easily trained so could learn to respect them. Is house and leash trained and knows several commands. Would be great in a home with children and/or other dogs. He will have all shots updated and be neutered before adoption. If you can provide a loving home, please call 635-1786

Help Save Belize’s endangered reef
Make a difference; Let your voice be heard. Please take time to send a message to our Prime Minister. We don't want seismic surveys or oil exploration in Belize. We care about our environment. It takes seconds to fill out and send.

Belize and the Caribbean Public Health Agency Launches Tourism and Health Program
The Ministries of Health and Tourism in collaboration with the Caribbean Public Health Agency (CARPHA) and the Belize Tourism Board (BTB) are pleased to announce the launch of a national initiative to enhance the health and well-being of its visitors and locals while promoting sustainable and profitable tourism. Belize is one of six Caribbean countries that will benefit from this project funded by a grant from the Inter-American Development Bank (IDB). The project will be implemented from 2016-2018 by CARPHA, through its regional tourism and health program, in collaboration with Caribbean Tourism Organization (CTO) and Caribbean Hotel and Tourism Association (CHTA) along with Private-Public Teams in each country. Along with the Chief Medical Officers or Permanent Secretaries of Tourism in each country, these organizations will comprise the Regional Project Steering Committee.

Miss Divali Nagar Queen Pageant
Asia Gilharry represents Belize at the Miss Divali Nagar Queen Pageant in Trinidad and TobagoUnder the patronage of the Corozal Organization of East Indian Cultural Heritage (COEICH), Miss Asia Gilharry was crowned Miss East Indian, Belize 2016 – 2017 by outgoing Miss East Indian queen, Miss Namita Balani. She will be representing Belize in the upcoming Miss Divali Nagar Queen Pageant hosted by the National Council of Indian Culture in Trinidad and Tobago on October 27, 2016. The daughter of Mr. & Mrs. Froylan Gilharry, she is a fourth form student at the Corozal Community College where she is majoring in Academic Sciences. Asia has been an active member of the COEICH organization and has participated in leading roles in traditional Indian dances during cultural festivals and pageants. She is now a Belizean Beauty and Cultural Ambassador who believes in the retrieval of the East Indian culture before it is completely lost. Being an active member of the peer helpers, student council, and a dancer in the Corozal Community College marching band has given her the opportunity to contribute meaningfully to her community. She aspires to become a successful lawyer in order to defend the rights of people.You can show your support for Miss Asia Gilharry by voting for her as Miss Photogenic by1. Visiting https://www.facebook.com/NCICTT/ 2. “Like” NCIC’s Facebook page3. “Like” Miss Asia Gilharry’s photo You must “like” both NCIC’s Facebook page and Miss Asia Gilharry’s photo for the vote to count. Voting will begin on Tuesday October 18th at 8:00 a.m. and will end on Wednesday 26 th October, 2016 at11:59 p.m.

Course on Primate Ecology and Conservation
Interested in being active in primate conservation in Belize? A course on Primate Ecology and Conservation: An Introduction to Field Research is being offered by C.E.L.A. Belize in December / January. It is supported by a grant from the Protected Areas Conservation Trust (PACT) entitled “Population and Health Assessment of Howler Monkeys at the Community Baboon Sanctuary in Belize” and is designed for undergraduate or veterinary students with an interest in primates from biology or conservation perspective. The work is focusing on the Community Baboon Sanctuary, which traditionally has had the highest density of endangered Yucatan black howler monkeys in the world. However, this is also an area affected by the recent Hurricane Earl, and there are concerns over the status of the population. Want to make a difference? Why not check out this opportunity! Limited places are available.

Miss World Belize 2016
The Miss World Belize pageant is being held this Saturday, October 22nd, at the Log Cab-Inns, here in Cayo. The winner will represent Belize at the Miss World pageant in Washington D.C. in December. Panerrifix will be performing during the show. The after party is at Thirsty Thursdays, and there's a pool party on Sunday. Call 607-2954 for more information and tickets.

Representing the Yucatec Maya of the north
The most rewarding thing in life is the experiences and the memories we create. I was more than honored to represent the Yucatec Maya of the north through Banquitas House of Culture. I was given the privilege to give His Excellency Sir. Colville Young Governor General of Belize a tour of the displays put together by our fellows friends of Banquitas HOC. I express my sincere appreciation to everyone that made this possible I especially thank the Embajada de la Rep. Bolivariana de Venezuela en Belice for all the support and collaboration to make this possible. In this journey I reconnect with friends and make new friends. Que Viva nuestra Cultura.

Track the seismic ship the Northern Explorer here:

Oceana Belize: We want to hear from YOU!
The Belize Coalition to Save our Natural Heritage is holding consultations to meaningfully engage with the Belizeans on the latest developments on offshore oil exploration. Wednesday, October 19th 2016, 6:30 pm, Lion’s Den, San Pedro Town. Thursday, October 20th 2016, 8:30 am, Caye Caulker Community Center, Caye Caulker. Thursday, October 20th 2016, 6:30 pm, Community Center, Placencia.

HERE IS YOUR CHANCE TO COME OUT AND PRESSURE THE GOVERNMENT TO STOP PUTTING OUR REEF AND MARINE ENVIRONMENT IN DANGER.
Regional Seismic Survey The Belize Tourism Board (BTB) hereby invites you to an informative session on the Regional Seismic Survey. Date: Thursday, October 20, 2016 Time: 10:00 am Venue: Sunbreeze Hotel Conference Room, San Pedro Based on questions and concerns raised by tourism stakeholders, the Belize Tourism Board (BTB) has arranged for an Information Session on the Seismic Survey planned for Belize. The following representatives from the Department of Environment (DOE) and from the Geology & Petroleum Department will be there to address you on this very important topic. CEO Dr. Colin Young CEO Yvonne Hyde Martin Allegria - Chief Environmental Officer Andre Cho - Director of Geology & Petroleum Department The representatives will explain details of the Seismic survey and will be able to clarify and respond to your questions and concerns.

Poets Corner: Republic of Belize
By Abdulmajeed K Nunez. Extra, extra, read all about it You have to be in it to win it The way forward is clear, but we have kick bad habit The Republic of Belize We need to start talking about it The universities should researching this topic At UWI and Galen this should be the topic of their thesis A ten-member Cabinet A fifty-member appointed senate A new GG will be elected president We need to make up our minds who gwen represent Sir Colville Young will be placed on retirement Extra extra read all about it You have to be in it to win it You don't have to like a man to work for mutual benefit The Republic of Belize We need fi discuss it Two elected senators from each district Our Diaspora brothers and sister must be in it Chicago, New York, Los Angeles must be represented on it

SMCU Credit Union Day 2016
Saint Martin's Credit Union is celebrating International Credit Union Day tomorrow, October 20th. Stop by at learn about credit unions, and why they are a much better choice. "We're all ready for the big day tomorrow. Join us as we celebrate ICUD 2016 at SMCU Belize."

Channel 7

Barrow Shuffles Cabinet For The Second Time In 7 Weeks
There has been a major shuffle in the Barrow Cabinet – the second one in just 7 weeks. This time it's to fill the vacuum created by Gaspar Vega who resigned from Cabinet under pressure from a lands compensation scandal involving his son. So, Godwin Hulse has been assigned to take over the Agriculture, Forestry, Fisheries, the Environment and Sustainable Development portfolio – which he has an affinity for since he has been an industrial farmer for most of his life. This also dovetails neatly with one of the teachers' governance demands. But that means Hulse must leave behind the newly created Ministry of Home Affairs – which the Prime Minister now takes over – meaning that for the second time in 7 weeks, the all important police department will have a new ministry. So the Prime Minister is now Minister of Home Affairs and Finance – but he'll delegate most of the police matters to former Deputy Commissioner of Police Elodio Aragon, who now steps in as Minister of State in the Ministry of Home Affairs. Presumably, the portfolio for Youth, Sports and Culture which he managed day to day now goes completely to his former substantive minister Deputy Prime Minister Patrick Faber.

PUP Says Saldivar Must Leave Cabinet
Of course, there could be even more changes ahead pending the finding of a legal opinion that the Prime Minister has sought on the situation with Defence Minister John Saldivar. He's on a week's leave of absence right now after it was revealed that he and accused murderer William Danny Mason were named shareholders in a company in August 2015. The Prime Minister says the legal opinion is to determine whether the steps he took to sever the business relationship were enough. Opposition leader John Briceno says the Prime Minister doesn't need any legal opinion, he just need to follow his own advice:.. Hon. John Briceno - PUP Party Leader: "Well I think that John Saldivar is in quite a pickle and why so I say that? Well because the prime minister has said that if evidence were to ever surface that John Saldivar is in business with Mr. Mason that he would fire John Saldivar from the Cabinet. Now a document have surfaced showing - company documents that Mr. Saldivar was in business with Mr. Mason, that Mr. Mason owned 30% of the Bandits football team. Mr. Saldivar now quickly took out a release and probably he was not properly advised because in that release now he is saying that yes I may have this thing with this man and yes he gave me 50 thousand; we don't know if it is 50 thousand Belize or 50 thousand US. He said then but I set up another company so I move the football team from this company to the next company."

Schools Back In Session!
Today kids countrywide had to shake off that vacation vibe that they had settled into for the past 2 weeks. It was back to school as usual and it was a completely different scene at city schools, instead of those chained gates and empty fields, kids were pouring into the school grounds across the city. For them, it was just another fun day at school, reuniting with their friends and completing their class assignments. But, it is not that simple for the principals or teachers. Sure, most of them are happy to be back in the classrooms but there are still several unresolved issues hovering. Principal at Wesley Upper School, Nicole Welch Middleton, told us more about those concerns. We also spoke to Lureen Ciego, the Principal at St. Ignatius School and she told us how the post- strike school day went.

Teachers Say GOB Should Not Dock Pay
And, as you heard from the Wesley Principal, the teachers are willing to make up the time, but not if the Ministry will dock their pay. As we showed you last night, the Chief Education Officer, Dr. Carol Babb, sent a memorandum to the school managers all across the country which says, quote, "The Government of Belize… will be withholding its contribution toward the salaries for individual teachers for the days when those teachers were on strike." The BNTU is not simply letting that one go unchallenged. They released a statement today saying quote, "We wish to advise and reassure our members/teachers that the BNTU is currently seeking legal advice on this latest attack by the Government Belize and the Ministry of Education to determine how to deal with the implications of this memo." End Quote.

PUP Backs Teachers
And, not surprisingly, the PUP supports the teachers. The party sent out a statement saying as much this evening, and Party Leader John Briceno held a press briefing after a special National executive Meeting. He says after all the teachers fought for in the public's name, Government is morally obligated not to dock their pay: Hon. John Briceno - PUP Party Leader: "We are very concerned, dismayed that after having such a long drawn out negotiations with the government that the government now has decided that they are not going to pay the teachers for the period that they were in strike. In the 2005 strike I think the unions they went to court and the Chief Justice was very clear as I have been told that if they were to take industrial actions that then the government is required to pay their salaries and that is why the teachers did not bring up that issue whilst they were negotiating with the prime minister and his officials. We are urging the government to do the right thing, to pay the teachers, to pay then what they rightly deserve and we expect that on the 31st of October all teachers are going to get 100% of their salaries and if they don't we in the PUP are going to be urging everyone including the private sector and the other unions to join the teachers to go to the streets to ensure that they full compensated as mandated by the law."

Senate Committee Names Chair, Finally
This morning at the National Assembly, the members of the Senate Select Committee held their second meeting in two weeks. They were trying to select a Senator who will chair the investigation into the special audits on the Immigration Department. The Government was hoping that one of the 3 social partner senators would be prepared to lead the Committee, but Church Senator Ashley Rocke is refusing for security reasons, and both the labour and business senators, Elena Smith and Mark Lizarraga, have been instructed by their constituents to stand down from the leadership. They share the concerns of the PUP that the committee is not independent, and that the terms of reference does not sufficiently empower the Committee to do its job properly. So, today, the Two UDP Senators showed up for the meeting, along with the Church Senator and the Labour Senator; Business Senator Lizarraga couldn't attend today for personal reasons. After those who showed up indicated their continued refusal of the chairmanship, UDP Senator Aldo Salazar was forced to take up the position. Here is that moment in the meeting when he was nominated by UDP Senator Dr. Carla Barnett and seconded by Senator Rocke:

PUP Will Join Senate Probe - Hopes to Carry Majority
And after boycotting the first two meetings, the PUP today announced that it will be joining the committee full force. And why is that? Well, it has become clear that the social partners and the opposition could control the majority vote! Briceno gave the party's position today:…. Hon. John Briceno - PUP Party Leader: "We early have decided that we were not going to participate; but now that we have been informed by the other Senators in the social partners and by the clerk of the national assembly that the chairperson of that special senate select committee does not have a vote. Aldo Salazar has been elected as the chair, our party decided this morning that it is very important for us to participate again provided the other two senators from the social partners be the unions and the private sector participate. So we are going to be participating, I am going to be meeting with the three senators for us to decide who is going to represent us in that committee. But we're also appealing to the government and to the senate that we still believe that this senate select committee must have an adequate budget so that they can do the work properly."

Revealing Some Of The Mystery Of Michael Young's Sudden Death
Today, a wide cross section of Belizean society is still trying to figure out what could have led prominent attorney Michael Young to commit suicide. What we know so far is that the 61 year old Young left his office at Young's Law Firm at around 11:00, went to buy lunch from his usual place, ate lunch with his wife at their Bella Vista home, and then retired to his bedroom at 12:45. At around 1:00, his wife found him dead in the bathroom. The door had been locked and he was found inside with a gunshot to the left side of the temple, and beside his body lay a black and silver Ruger 9 mm pistol loaded with (1) one live round in the chamber and (14) live rounds inside the magazine. One 9mm expended shell was found inside the bathtub.

Two Accused of Beating Camalote Cop
Last night, we told you about the 2 men, charged for badly beating Police Constable Mark Rodriguez. Those men, Camalote residents Belhem Guzman and Sanjay Casey, are at the Belize Central Prison. They were arraigned today in Belmopan Magistrate's Court on charges of attempted murder, dangerous harm, use of deadly means of harm, aggravated assault, damage to property and common assault. According to police, the two men wielded a pint bottle and a wooden chair to which they used to savagely beat Constable Rodriguez. After the arraignment, Superintendent Howell Gillett, in whose jurisdiction the case falls, granted us an interview. He's been to visit Constable Rodriguez, who is regularly assigned to the Belmopan Magistrate's Court. Today, Gillett told us that the officer remains hospitalized at the KHMH for severe injuries he suffered to the head and face:

Belmopan Councilor Accused of Land Squiggle
We also asked the Belmopan Police Commander about that report which Belmopan Mayor Khalid Belisle made against his city councillor, Gene Briceno Lopez. The City Council released a statement explaining the complaint. Belisle alleged that councillor Briceno Lopez forged his signature and illegally used the council's official stamp. When asked Superintendent Gillett, he told us that it concerned a piece of land in Belmopan: Supt. Howell Gillet - OC, Belmopan Police: "The investigation is too young at this stage, just yesterday the mayor of Belmopan made a report, we need document proof to substantiate these allegations and that is yet to forth come. Ms. Gene Briceno is not in our custody at the time because we need more time to investigate before we reach that point where she would be arrested but I want to say that it has to come that the mayor's office or some representative from the mayor's office has to request court actions so that we could proceed."

OCEANA Back and Forth With GOB
The back and forth between OCEANA and the Ministry of Economic Development and Petroleum continues. Yesterday we told you about the government's response to claims that they were conducting seismic surveys without considering the research about the negative effects of the tests. In that press release, the Ministry of Petroleum refuted claims that its research was lacking and instead turned the finger at the environmental community, claiming that it was they who did not have all the information. Today, the environmental community, including organizations like OCEANA, WWF, the Belize Audubon Society and BTIA held a press conference to clarify their views on the subject of seismic surveys and why they are so concerned. Here's what they said… Janelle Chanona – Vice President of OCEANA Belize: "Throughout all of this we were applying or requesting formally, in person and by email for copies off all the contracts, materials, data related to this. Following the October 11th session we wrote to the department of the environment saying can you please share with us the written submission that you made to Cabinet that they're basing this approval without EIA on? We have not gotten that."

CDB Approves 200 Million US For Belize
On Monday, the Caribbean Development Bank approved a motion to supply Belize with US$200.5 million over the course of the next four years. According to the CDB, the funds are meant to help solve some of the social, environmental and economic challenges the country faces. The CDB has also developed a strategy for addressing these issues which looks to increase competitiveness and productivity, improve quality and access to education and training, as well as governance and development planning. The plan also covers enhancing environmental management and reducing vulnerability to natural disasters.

Michael Young, A Leading Legal Light and A Public Advocate
When Michael Young apparently ended his own life yesterday – it sent shockwaves across the society – partly because he was so well known, but also because so many thought a man of his bearing and means couldn't have any problem so bad that it would force him to take such a drastic measure. Today his friends commented on the initial shock, the realization and the reflection:… Rodwell Williams - SC - Michael's Friend: "Profound shock, disbelief and grief; I would never had thought and even when I learn more I resisted the notion this could be true so I was profoundly shocked and broken by it." Denys Barrow, S.C. - Michael's Colleague: "There was of course the immediate shock the obvious what - bwai but I quickly settled into a philosophical stance - I could only wonder what took place and why it took place. Recognise that there will be so many things unanswered and it is a source of comfort for me to think that Michael made a decision; one doesn't know what his emotional state was etc. but I am content in accepting that Michael made a massive contribution. He leaves a behind a lot of high regard; warmth and love and I think he lived a good and full life. And bwai I'm just happy that he was my friend and that gave so much to Belize and to Belizeans and I'm content to live with that memory."

PUP Wants Lands Dept Audit
Going back now to politics, the PUP says it wants one more audit done – and this one would be of the lands department from 2008 to 2016. Of course, the news has been hot with reports of shady deals done for well-connected friends of the UDP. Well, John Briceno says the public needs to know what happened at “Lands” under Gaspar Vega;s tenure:…

Briceno Sympathizes With Vega
And while Briceno seems hardly concerned about his tenure, he wasn’t quick to celebrate the demise of a political adversary. Briceno said he wishes Vega well:…

Belizeans At WOMEX
The World Music Expo, also known as WOMEX is a five day event that brings together everyone involved in the music industry. WOMEX is an international platform for musicians, performers and producers to show off their works and sample the creations of other artists. It also awards musicians for their achievements in the field. In 2007, Andy Palacio and Ivan Duran won the WOMEX Award for their accomplishments on the Watina album. WOMEX 2016 started today in Santiago de Compostela, Spain and 8 Belizeans joined more than 2,500 delegates from 90 countries for the festivities. Among them are Shyne Barrow, Belize's Music Ambassador, well-known singer Jackie Castillo, Troy "DJ Dalla" Flowers, Tyfara Panton of Flavaz Entertainment, and 5 time Garifuna Music Awards winner Clayton Williams, known for his hit song, Bibagari. And while that is the official delegation, Ivan Duran form Stonetree Records is also there with Al Ovando and James Sanker from MIAB

Doug Denies Facebook Falsehoods
And before we close tonight, we can report that despite facebook rumours which said that Doug Singh’s business headquarters on Mapp street had been raided by the FIU sometime last night or this morning, we spoke to Singh and he told us it is completely false. Rumours persist at this hour but we just checked and the office is closed.

Channel 5

Cabinet Reshuffles for Second Time This Year; Godwin Grabs Agriculture, P.M. takes Police
The resignation from Cabinet of Minister of Agriculture, Gaspar Vega, has sent things in a tailspin in Belmopan. This afternoon, the Office the Prime Minister announced who succeeds Vega along [...]

Ministry of Education Says: No Services, No Salary!
Late Tuesday evening, a memo from the Ministry of Education, titled “Withholding of Contributions towards Salaries for Teachers on Strike,” was released.  According to the document, signed by Chief Education [...]

Teachers’ Union Looks at Legalities of Ministry’s Move
The memo from the Ministry of Education has obviously not been well received by the B.N.T.U.  This afternoon, the B.N.T.U. executive met on the matter which could lead to further [...]

B.N.T.U. Accuses Ministry of Trying to Bully and Intimidate
According to the B.N.T.U., the salary deductions for the days on strike, is another form of attack against teachers. Palacio says that it is the school management that determines the [...]

Will B.N.T.U. Resume Strike Action? Prime Minister Called on to Intervene
The memo requests information on the number of striking teachers to be delivered within hours earlier today. The B.N.T.U. believes that this latest missive is not an act of good [...]

P.U.P. Leader Says Teachers Must Be Paid
This afternoon the People’s United Party was quick to respond to the plight of the teachers. In a press conference today, Leader of the Opposition John Briceño demanded that the [...]

It’s Back to School After Eleven Days Off for Students
While the Ministry of Education and Belize National Teachers’ Union have not made up yet, the teachers were back in school in full force today. A check of schools across [...]

Aldo Salazar Chairs Senate Committee, Says Voting Will Not Be Focus
The Senate Select Committee on immigration proceeded with its sitting this morning in Belmopan.  Government Senator Aldo Salazar was appointed chairman of the Senate Select Committee to investigate the immigration [...]

Unions and Possibly Business Senator Change Their Minds on Inquiry
Senator Aldo Salazar’s appointment as chair comes after both Senator Elena Smith and Senator Ashley Rocke declined the chairmanship. Senator Rocke had previously stated that he and his family were [...]

Inquiry Chair Promises Fairness and Natural Justice for Participants
Senator Aldo Salazar has the task of shepherding the inquiry through to its conclusion. He was appointed by the Government and today he was questioned about whether he could remain [...]

P.U.P. About-Face: Opposition Will Name Last Member of Senate Committee
When the immigration inquiry resumes, the P.U.P. will be back as part of the select senate committee. The Opposition withdrew over the composition and terms of reference of the committee. [...]

United Democratic Party Remembers Michael Young, S.C.
The untimely death of prominent attorney, Michael Young, continues to rattle the community. A man, highly respected and well liked, took his life on Tuesday after having lunch at his [...]

How Does Leave of Absence Affects Embattled John Saldivar?
Minister of Defence John Saldivar has been placed on leave of absence for one week as of Tuesday. A press release issued on the same day stated that legal advice is [...]

John Briceño Wants Government to “Can” the Belmopan Rep
But the Leader of the Opposition John Briceño says that John Saldivar should be canned! Briceño says that with the documents presented and based on the P.M.’s statement months ago, [...]

Will P.U.P. Force Recall of Gaspar Vega in Orange Walk North?
What does the resignation of former DPM Gaspar Vega mean for politics in the north? It is considered a blow for the U.D.P., but others see it as a gain [...]

Environmental Organizations Continue to Sound Alarm on Seismic Testing
Seismic testing in offshore Belize starts on Thursday. On Tuesday night you heard Chief Environmental Officer Martin Alegria say that the testing is a part of a regional initiative. The [...]

Court Action a Possibility to Stop Testing
But with all the back and forth between D.O.E. and the marine conservation community, seismic testing is a done deal. It is scheduled to start on Thursday. But, not so [...]

Police Charge Cayo Men for Beating Up a Cop
Sanjay Casey and Belhem Guzman, both of Camalote village, Cayo District, were today read charges of attempted murder, dangerous harm, use of deadly means of harm, and aggravated assault. Casey was [...]

Belmopan Councilor Released, But Faces Forgery Investigation
Gene Lopez, elected to the Belmopan City Council last year, is under suspicion of forgery of a land document using official property of the Council – the stamp and signature [...]

Accused Cops in Hilberto Sotz Death to be Tried for Manslaughter
Two police officers, who were initially charged with the murder of Hilberto Sotz while he was in a holding cell in San Pedro, will stand trial for manslaughter in the [...]

CTV3

Dean Barrow Reshuffles Cabinet
The sudden resignation of Gaspar Vega from Prime Minister Dean Barrow’s Cabinet has left more than a political vacuum for his administration. His resignation as Minister of Agriculture left a space for someone to take up that portfolio. While we expected a simple release indicating who that would be, today we learnt that Prime Minister Dean Barrow opted for a major Cabinet shake-up. A release from the Prime Minister’s office indicates that the Ministry of Agriculture will be taken up, by no other than Hon. Godwin Hulse. We wouldn’t be surprised if you had already guessed that, because Hulse, apparently, is the PM’s go to man. He was introduced in Cabinet to take over the Ministry of Immigration, following the Penner Scandal. Then he picked up the Ministry of Natural Resources after Vega was booted from there. Later on he became the Minister of Police following the Danny Mason debacle. It appears Hulse is this Government’s Clean Up Minister. But how much can he clean up if he only spends months in a Ministry?

MOE To Deduct Salaries From Teachers
Less than one day after the BNTU put their strike action on pause after 11 days of being out of the classrooms, there is concern about possibility of teacher’s pay being docked for the days absent from school. The B.N.T.U. has pledged to stand up for its teachers on this point, but the decision lies in the hands of school managements. During the BNTU press conference yesterday national President Luke Palacio made an urgent appeal to school managers to consider the facts of why they walked off the job and reiterated that the teachers will make up the time lost.

Teachers To Fight Salary Deduction
So will the teachers loose a percentage of their pay check for the month of October for being in support of the industrial action taken by BNTU? And what is BNTU’s take on the Ministry’s treat? Today we spoke to President of BNTU Orange Walk, Otilio Munoz, who reiterated that the ruling passed down by Chief Justice Conte back in 2005, when teachers staged strike action for 10 days, which indicated that the government could not instruct managements to deduct for strike action, still applies today. According to Munoz the BNTU is at the time, arduously working with the different school Managers to ensure that teacher’s salary does not see a deduction.

PUP Condemns MOE Actions Against Teachers
Since news broke out that teachers who participated in the 11 days strike run the risk of not receiving their full salary at the end of the month, the public outcry has been tremendous, after all teachers were fighting for Belize. Joining the group of Belizeans who are against teacher’s salary deduction is the People’s United Party who condemned Government’s decision today. According to Leader of the Opposition, Honorable John Briceno, the stance of the BNTU was a just and principled one, and teachers across this country stood for what every Belizean should demand – good governance and no corruption. With no malice in the actions by the teachers, they should get their full salary says Briceno.

Police Issues Official Report On Death Of Prominent Attorney
Last night we reported on the death of high-ranking attorney and legal advisor for the United Democratic Party, Michael Clarence Edward Young and how he reportedly ended his own life sometime around 12:45 yesterday afternoon. Shortly after the shocking incident transpired, police were called out to the residence located in the Bella Vista area in Belize City where the lifeless body of Young was found with an apparent gunshot wound to the right side of the temple along with and exit wound to the left side. According to official police reports, after having lunch Young went upstairs to his bedroom and was later discovered by his wife at about 1:00 p.m. apparently dead inside the restroom.

LOVE FM

Godwin Hulse Reshuffled Again in Cabinet
Senator Godwin Hulse is making history tonight as having served the shortest term in Government as the Minister of Home Affairs. Hulse was recently moved from Natural Resources ministry to Home Affairs eighty days ago; and tonight he is once again being moved as the Office of Prime Minister has announced a change in Cabinet […]

Education Ministry Speaks of Teachers’ Wages
Tonight the answer to the question as to whether teachers will be paid for their time absent from the classrooms was made clear via a memorandum sent from the Chief Education Officer in the Ministry of Education, Dr Carol Babb to the General Managers of the schools dated Tuesday, October 18. The two paragraph document […]

Opposition Wants the Teachers to Get Paid
During a press conference yesterday, the President of the Belize National Trade Union, Luke Palacio told the media that it is the decision of the management of the schools to decide whether or not teachers who participated in the strike would be receiving their full salary. The teachers were on strike for eleven days which […]

Senator Aldo Salazar Named Chairman of SSSC
Senator Aldo Salazar was selected as the Chairman for the Senate Special Select Committee that has been tasked to probe into the Auditor General’s Report on Immigration and Nationality Departments. This is the second sitting of the special committee with the first facing issues in naming a Chairman. Subsequent to being named Chairman, Senator Salazar […]

PUP Will Join Senate Select Committee
The Executive Council of the People’s United Party met this morning at its headquarters in Belize City. One of the topics discussed was the Senate Select Committee and the investigation into the special reports of the Auditor General. As we mentioned, the Committee held its second meeting today and once again an opposition senator was […]

Former Lands Minister Says Lands Department Should Be Investigated As Far Back As 2008
Opposition Leader Briceno spoke about the latest scandal emanating from the Lands Department. That scandal resulted in the resignation of one of the UDP’s most influential political players, Gaspar Vega. Vega resigned as Minister but is still the elected Area Representative for Orange Walk North. Briceno says that it is the people of Orange Walk […]

LOO Says Saldivar Is in Quite a Pickle
As we reported yesterday, Minister of Defence, John Saldivar is suspended from Cabinet. We cannot say if his suspension is with or without pay but it will be for one week. The decision to suspend Minister Saldivar was made by Prime Minister Dean Barrow after documents surfaced regarding a business relationship with the infamous Danny […]

Bar Association Mourns Death of Senior Counsel Michael Young
The Bar Association of Belize has extended its condolences to the family of Senior Counsel Michael Young. Young was admitted to the bar in Belize in 1977 and was elevated to the status of Senior Counsel in 1996 in recognition of his excellence in the practice of the law. A statement from the Bar Association […]

Seismic Testing is a No-No Says Environmental Sector
The environmental community is up in arms over Cabinet’s approval for seismic testing to be conducted in the offshore area of Belize’s territory. The Belize Coalition to Save our Natural Heritage, Oceana Belize, World Wildlife Fund, Healthy Reefs Initiative, the Belize Audubon Society and the Belize Institute of Environmental Law and Policy are of the […]

Two Different Accounts of Why Mark Rodriguez Was Assaulted
Two men were brought before Magistrate Emerita Anderson to answer to multiple charges following the assault of Police Constable Mark Rodriguez which occurred on Sunday evening at Outback Ranch in Camalote Village, Cayo District. The charges against the men, Belhem Guzman and Sanjay Casey, are attempted murder, use of deadly means of harm, dangerous harm […]

Breaking Belize NewsPJ

PUP condemns GOB withholding teachers salaries; They have teachers back
The opposition, People’s United Party today issued a press release to condemn the government’s decision to withhold teachers salaries for participating in strike. In a memo sent out yesterday the Ministry of Education informed school managers, principals and boards that GOB will be “withholding […]

Will PM Barrow fire Saldivar from Cabinet? More questions than answers in the ongoing Mason’s saga!
Yesterday the Press Office issued a release indicating that the Prime Minister placed Hon. John Saldivar, Minister of Defense, on one week’s leave of absence. PM Barrow, being an attorney himself, is aware that Saldivar’s claim to have severed all business relationship with […]

Office of the Prime Minister announces Cabinet Changes
The Office of the Prime Minister has issued a press release announcing changes in the Cabinet. According to the release, the following Cabinet changes have been made: The Sen. Hon. Godwin Hulse becomes the new Minister of Agriculture, Forestry, Fisheries, the Environment and Sustainable […]

Senate Special Select Committee selects chairman
Senator Aldo Salazar, a government appointed senator, has officially been elected as the new chairman of the Senate Special Select Committee today at a Senate meeting held in Belmopan. The Senate Special Select Committee has been appointed by the Senate to investigate into the […]

A business belonging to a prominent Belize City businessman has been raided by authorities
BBN has received reliable reports that a business located on Mapp Street in the Northside of Belize City belonging to a high ranking UDP official was raided by police and the Financial Intelligence Unit (FIU). The raid happened sometime between late last night and […]

Government will withhold salaries for teachers on strike
Yesterday, a memo from the Ministry of Education was sent to all general managers of government and government aided primary schools and Boards of Deans of government and government aided colleges to request the attendance of school teachers during the strike. The memo states: […]

Drive by shooting in Stann Creek
According to police reports, Yesseni Trap, 28, of mile 10 on the Stann Creek Valley Road was at home around 6:15 p.m. Tuesday, when she heard a vehicle stop outside on the street and a single gunshot was fired. Trapp says that she saw […]

Police issue official report on death of Micheal Young
According to the official police report, yesterday around 1:45 p.m. officers responded to reports in the Bella vista area at the residence of attorney Michael Clarence E. Young, 61, where he was seen with a gunshot wound to the right side of temple and […]

Danger Subsides – Challenge Remains
These are difficult and defining days for our UDP Government, and the fact that the immediate danger appears to have subsided is no reason for complacency or any return to business as usual. Evidently, all is not well in Belmopan, and it would be unwise, […]

GOB to sign SI for appointment of 13th senator
Tomorrow, Thursday, the Government of Belize (GoB) will sign a Statutory Instrument for the appointment of the long awaited 13th Senator. At a press conference following a meeting with the Belize National Teachers Union (BNTU) last Thursday, Prime Minister Dean Barrow committed to signing […]

Belmopan City Councilor busted in fraud scheme
Belmopan City Councilor Gene Briceno Lopez was detained by Belmopan police on accusations of forgery. Lopez, a firm supporter of controversial Belmopan Area Rep, John Saldivar, allegedly forged Mayor Khalid Belisle’s signature on fraudulent documents. According to further allegations, she illegally used his official […]

Belize: The Barrow Government Cannot Fix The Economy
Prime Minister Hon. Dean Barrow’s government was elected to its third term in office almost one year ago, so he theoretically has four more years to serve out the constitutional 5-year term. His government first came to power in 2008, on a wave of […]

Prominent UDP lawyer passes
Police, yesterday, confirmed that prominent attorney Michael Clarence Edward Young, 61, is dead. He was inside his Bella Vista home when a single shot was heard. When police arrived on the scene he was found with gunshot injuries to the head. While speculations that […]

Blogs

The Drums of our Fathers Monument in Dangriga Belize
Designed by local sculptor Steve Okeke, the Drums of Our Fathers monument is a visual masterpiece that showcases the importance of drumming and music to the Garifuna culture. The monument features three ritual dugu drums and two sisiras (maracas), musical instruments that are emblematic of Garifuna music. Although they compose just 4% of Belize’s population, the Garifuna people are a unique culture that are well-known for their unique musical influences, including drumming. Formed from an intermarriage of African slaves and native islanders of the Caribbean, the Garifuna arrived in Belize more than 200 years ago after being exiled by the British. The town of Dangriga where the monument is located is the epicenter of Belize’s Garifuna culture, and the monument is a visually-imposing tribute to the rich musical heritage of the Garifuna. The three large dugu drums in the monument represent the past, present, and the future. The center drum is known as a lanigi garawound or “heart drum”, representing the present and the lead drum that calls the rhythm for the other two. The sisira or maracas are used in Garifuna music as a “spirit helper” to bridge the gap between the ordinary world and the spirit world. The monument is located in the primary traffic circle on the main road that enters the town of Dangriga from the south in Stann Creek District, Belize.

Buying a Dream Home in Belize: 7 Steps to Follow
Our Beloved Belize, “Land of the free by the Caribbean Sea” is one of the most desired destinations for vacation and retirement. Owning your dream home in Belize was once a dream but now it can become a reality with Atlantic International Bank Ltd. (AIBL). Let us partner with you in bringing your dreams to life and finance your dream home. In contrast to what many credit applicants may believe the process of achieving a home loan does not start by an Application Letter. The process of qualifying for a home loan begins with the creation of your credit history. Your credit history is a record of your credit behaviour and it is only one part of the determining factors of your ability to get a loan. Take care of your credit report.

International Sourcesizz

Climate Prediction Center’s Central America Hazards Outlook October 20 – October 26, 2016
Widespread heavy rainfall is forecasted for Nicaragua, Southern Honduras and El Salvador during the upcoming week. A varied pattern over the last 7 days brought localized above-average precipitation to parts of the region, but continuing dryer-than-normal conditions across many other areas, especially in the interior. The greatest rainfall, as observed by TRMM, was located over southeastern Nicaragua and southern Guatemala where over 150mm fell. Other areas, including El Salvador and the Peten department of Guatemala, received well in excess of 100mm. Flooding was reported in Poptun, Peten department. The story was different for parts of central Guatemala, Honduras, and Nicaragua, which received light and well below normal rainfall. Many of the mountainous areas of south-central Guatemala exhibit deficits of 50-100mm for the week. The ‘Postrera’ season has generally been dryer than normal for the majority of Central America. The largest and most consistent deficits for the period are located in Guatemala.

The World’s Second Largest Reef Is in Danger
The Belize government has announced that its barrier reef system is a potential site for oil mining. Last week, a preliminary obituary for the Great Barrier Reef went viral. This week brings the news that the world’s second largest reef system, located off the shores of Belize, will be the new site for seismic oil exploration, and ultimately, drilling. In a country known for its natural beauty and eco-tourism, this could irreparably change local lives and the future of tourism. Because of its natural beauty and biodiversity, Belize attracts a tremendous amount of ecotourism. Yet this controversial method of oil exploration has the ability to send shockwaves thousands of miles, causing irreparable damage to marine wildlife like whales, dolphins, and manatees, while reducing the catch rate in fishing, a major source of income for many of the nation’s people. It is estimated that 190,000 out of Belize’s total population of 332,000 will have their jobs negatively affected by the exploration.

Caribbean National Insurance Schemes Looking Shaky
Caribbean countries beware! The National Insurance Schemes (NIS) in the region might not be as safe and sound as previously thought. That warning has come in an International Monetary Fund (IMF) working paper published by Koffie Nassar, Joel Okwuokei, Mike Li, Timothy Robinson and Saji Thomas. The paper – which the IMF stressed was a result of research done by the authors and did not necessarily represent the Washington-based institution’s views – advised territories in the region to pay close attention to the schemes which were projected to “run substantial deficits and deplete their assets in the next decades, raising the prospects of government intervention”. “The schemes appear relatively sound until about 2017. Thereafter, they are projected to incur substantial deficits and eventually run down their assets, raising the prospects that the government would have to bear a share of the promised pension benefits,” the researchers wrote.

Caribbean Islands Urged To Ratify Paris Agreement
With the Marrakech climate change talks now only weeks away, the few CARICOM member states that have not yet ratified the Paris Agreement - Jamaica among them - have been urged to do so. The appeal has come from Dr James Fletcher, former head of the CARICOM Task Force on Sustainable Development. He predicted that the failure to ratify will see those islands running the risk of not having a say in the first meeting of the parties to the global deal next month. "Given that the Paris Agreement will enter into force in the Marrakech meeting ... if you haven't ratified the Paris Agreement, then really you cannot be at the table determining rules and procedures and everything else," he cautioned.

The Privy Council versus the CCJ - A question of conscience? Part 3
What states have adopted the CCJ as their final appellate court? They are: Barbados, Guyana, Belize and the Commonwealth of Dominica. Jamaica attempted to do so but the Labour government and certain interest groups challenged the legislation in the case of Independent Jamaica Council for Human Rights Ltd v S. Marshall-Burnett and the AG of Jamaica. And finally the Privy Council ruled in 2005 that the method employed was unlawful and that to achieve such a change the government had to have a special majority in both houses of Parliament in favour of the change.

Precious corals bleached to death
The good news is that the current El Niño, a warm ocean current that drove temperatures up worldwide, is finally on its way out. But the bad news is that the unprecedented coral bleaching that El Niño triggered in 2014 shows little signs of slowing down. According to the October 3, 2016, update by the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA), El Niño-Southern Oscillation (ENSO) is currently in a neutral phase and is likely to remain so during the winters. NOAA’s four-month coral bleaching outlook, however, says reefs in the eastern side of the Indian Ocean, the western side of the Pacific and the Caribbean are likely to sustain bleaching until January 2017. Despite covering just 0.2-0.25 percent of the earth’s ocean area, coral reefs support up to 2 million species or a quarter of all marine life. For several island nations and tropical countries with long coastlines, corals provide protective services from severe tropical weather. Corals cushion the impact of tropical storms that would otherwise damage infrastructure close to the coast. It is estimated that for the Central American nation of Belize, the economic value of the infrastructure protected by coral reefs is equal to 10-15 percent of the nation’s Gross Domestic Product (GDP). Reef structures also act as indispensable genetic libraries and are often described as rainforests of the sea for their richness.

Surprising Benefits Of Coconut Embryo
The mature coconuts are collected regularly for their milk. Usually you cracked coconut for lunch (stewed vegetables), but sometimes there was a strange formation inside. Apparently, this coconut was ready to shoot some leaves out, and this thing is called buwa or buha (Ilonggo)– is an edible, soft predecessor. This part is actually the coconut cotyledon, sometimes called the “coconut embryo” or “coconut apple”, is actually suspended in germination. It is eaten raw in the province. We all know that coconut water and meat are very nutritious so don’t underestimate this one. Top 10 Health Benefits of Coconut Embryo: 1.Supports immune system health: it is anti-viral, anti-bacterial, anti-fungal, and anti-parasite. 2.Provides a natural source of quick energy and enhances physical and athletic performance. 3. Improves digestion and absorption of nutrients, vitamins, and minerals 4. Improves insulin secretion and symptoms associated with diabetes. 5. Helps protect the body from cancers due to insulin reduction, removal of free radicals that cause premature aging and degenerative disease. 6. Reduces risk of heart health and improves good cholesterol (HDL). 7. Restores and supports thyroid function. 8. Helps protect against kidney disease and bladder infection. 9. Promotes weight loss. 10. Helps keep hair and skin healthy and youthful looking, prevents wrinkles, sagging skin, age spots, and provides sun protection

Britain's view of its history 'dangerous', says former museum director
Neil MacGregor, the former director of the British Museum, has bemoaned Britain’s narrow view of its own history, calling it “dangerous and regrettable” for focusing almost exclusively on the “sunny side”. Speaking before the Berlin opening of his highly popular exhibition Germany – Memories of a Nation, MacGregor expressed his admiration for Germany’s rigorous appraisal of its history which he said could not be more different to that of Britain. “In Britain we use our history in order to comfort us to make us feel stronger, to remind ourselves that we were always, always deep down, good people,” he said. “Maybe we mention a little bit of slave trade here and there, a few wars here and there, but the chapters we insist on are the sunny ones,” he said. MacGregor warned: “This sort of handling of history is dangerous as well as regrettable”.

Videos

  • Oceana meeting on seismic survey scheduled for Belize, 66min.

  • GOB Responses to BNTU Demands, 1.5min.

  • Maya Ruins of Xunantunich, Belize - 2010, 27min. We were lucky enough to tour the huge Maya ruin of Xunantunich in western Belize during December of 2010. Our Tour Guide was Golden and as you can see from this video, we learned and observed a lot about the Maya Civilization.

  • Belize, la splendeur des Mayas Documentaire 2016, 2.5hr.

  • Words Do Matter, 1min. Developed by Belize's Special Envoy for Women and Children in partnership with UNICEF Belize, this video highlights the importance of using language that respects people for who they are. Words are powerful. Words can hurt. Words do matter.

  • Big Chatz Program, 19min. on Open Your Eyes...

  • Seismic Study begins, 20sec. The San Pedro Sun was invited on an exclusive flyover of the site where a seismic survey in the deep offshore territory of Belize east of the Barrier Reef System is taking place. At the site, it was observed that the sonar sea deep survey is already under way and being carried out by a Panamanian registered vessel, The Northern Explorer. The vessel is located at approximately 17.28349 N / 87.70617 W, between the Lighthouse Reef Atoll and Turneffe Atoll and only 10 miles way from the Blue Hole. The vessel is conducting research on behalf of the Minister of Economic Development & Petroleum and the Geology & Petroleum Department as part of a larger regional geophysical survey currently being done by the United States Government and the Mexican Government in the US Gulf of Mexico, the Mexican Gulf of Mexico and the east of the Yucatan Peninsula. According to the Government of Belize, the purpose of this survey is to gather new regional data to advance the knowledge of the geology and hydrocarbon systems of these geological regions.

  • The Belize Coalition to Save our Natural Heritage and island community discuss seismic testing in Belize, 107min.

  • Leader of the Opposition John Briceño invited the media to a press briefing , 1.5min. To call on the Government to give the teachers their salaries & to announce that the Opposition has decided that they will participate on the Senate Select Committee. They are yet to say who will be representing the PUP.

  • Diving Belize Mexico, 4min. Fall of 2015 I traveled to Central America from Colorado with a good friend where we started in El Salvador surfing for two weeks.

  • 22nd BD vaca Belize Hopkins, 8min.

    October 19, 2016


    FOR TODAY'S BELIZE WEATHER, CLICK HERE

    Click for our Daily Tropical Weather Report.

    Specials and Events

    Last night's TV news on Channel 7, Channel 5, LOVETV, PGTV, West Vision (Cayo) and CTV 3. Also with the most recent Open Your Eyes, Rise and Shine Morning Show, and the Dickie Bradley Specials


    Ambergris Today

    The Belize Barrier Reef is Being Held at Gun Point
    Airguns, that’s what they call them! Our government is putting them in our waters without asking us Belizeans if it is okay. Airguns blast shock waves through the water that are powerful enough to penetrate the seafloor. For dolphins and whales, it can cause deafness, disturbs communication, and disrupts migration patterns. The Belize Coalition to Save Our Natural Heritage strongly support the non use of seismic exploration. In a press release the organization stated that on Wednesday, October 12, 2016, the environmental community exposed the fact that seismic testing has been approved for offshore Belize; and more disturbingly that the survey would proceed without even the benefit of an Environmental Impact Assessment. The environmental community immediately asked the Cabinet to stay its decision to approve the seismic survey pending the submission of additional material and information regarding the impacts of seismic to marine environments and associated industries such as fishing and tourism.

    Strike on Hold, Classes Resume Tomorrow
    The Belize National Teacher Union (BNTU) wishes to inform the nation that the membership has decided to put the strike on hold and return to the classrooms on Wednesday, October 19, 2016, while keeping an eye over the execution of the agreements reached. The BNTU remains committed to our good governance and respect for the workers agenda and reserve its option to re-engage in industrial action if necessary. In a press release, the BNTU thanked the Almighty Father for his guidance and divine interventions throughout this process thus far. They also thanked the Belizean public, especially parents, who supported their action to address the list of good governance, transparency, accountability, and respect for the workers issues. "The activities they engaged in as part of the stand up for Belize campaign and industrial action could not have been as extensive and successful as they were without the tremendous support of parents, social partners, and friends of the BNTU from across the length and breadth of Belize and our regional body the Caribbean Union of Teachers (CUT). BNTU sincerely thanks everyone!"

    Belize and UNICEF Work on Empowering Children With Disablilities
    Belize’s Special Envoy for Women and Children and UNICEF hosted a two-day conference under the theme “Breaking Barriers for an Inclusive Society and Empowerment for Children with Disabilities” on October 13, 2016 and October 14, 2016 at Radisson Fort George Hotel and Marina, Belize City. In total, 36% of children aged 2 to 9 are at risk of having one or more disabilities whether physical, auditory, visual or learning. Children with disabilities are one of the most marginalized and excluded groups in society. Facing daily discrimination in the form of negative attitudes, lack of adequate policies and legislation, they are effectively barred from realizing their rights to healthcare, education, and even survival. Their disabilities also place them at a higher risk of physical abuse, and often exclude them from receiving proper nutrition or humanitarian assistance in emergencies.

    Six Belizeans Detained by Guatemalan Navy
    The Government of Belize (GOB) wishes to inform the public that six Belizeans were detained earlier this afternoon by a Guatemalan coastal patrol vessel, while they were fishing in the Gulf of Honduras. The Guatemalan coastal patrol vessel intercepted the Belizeans in an area at sea at a point between the mouth of the Moho River, Toledo District, Belize and Punta de Manabique, Izabal, Guatemala. The Guatemalan Navy claimed that the Belizeans were illegally fishing in Guatemala.

    Belize Teachers’ Strike Reaches 11th Day
    As the Belize National Teachers Union (BNTU) moves into its 11th day of teachers strike on October 18, 2016, the National Committee for Families and Children (NCFC) has expressed in a press release that it is deeply concerned and regrets the plight that our children are currently facing as they are being deprived of one of their fundamental rights, which is explicitly stated in the Convention on the Rights of the Child; that of the right to a good quality education. Article 28 states that, “you have the right to a good quality education and be encouraged to go to school to the highest level you can.” In fact, article three of the convention states that when adults are making decisions that the child’s welfare should be the paramount consideration.

    Misc Belizean Sourcesmzz

    BTIA Belmopan Tourism Expo Announced
    The 1st Annual Tourism Expo in Belmopan will be produced by the new chapter of BTIA Belmopan on Saturday, November 5 at the Blue Moon Event Center, located at the corner of Constitution Avenue and the Hummingbird Hwy. The goals are to provide a platform for business-to-business networking, highlight the variety of resorts and adventure experiences in Belize, as well as showcasing Belmopan as a tourist destination. The target markets are the business and tourism communities, individuals and groups looking for information about Belize and Belmopan and desirable transportation options to explore the country. “We are working to create an atmosphere of cooperation, introductions and promotion of our tourism and business community,” states Sally Thackery, chairperson of the Belmopan group. “It is our intention to expand the impressions of our capitol city to include the tourism market. Because Belmopan is located in the center of Belize, it is an ideal and convenient place to stay within an hour of many attractions.”

    WWF Belize: The Government of Belize has approved seismic surveys in Belize
    If it proceeds, this testing will occur just over one kilometer away from the fragile Belize Barrier Reef Reserve System World Heritage site, which has been listed as in danger by UNESCO. Seismic testing involves using airguns to blast shock waves through the water that are powerful enough to penetrate the seafloor. For dolphins and whales, it can cause deafness, disturb communications, and disrupt migration patterns. Whales and whale sharks will be migrating through the area at the time of the survey. Additionally, such surveys have been shown to impact negatively catch rates for fishers, especially during testing periods. What could possibly be worth risking our marine life? What could justify robbing 190,000 Belizeans of their livelihoods? Is oil actually worth dead fish in a dead sea in a country robbed of it's most precious resources? If oil isn't worth it to you... let the Prime Minister know.

    Government of Belize to Participate in Regional Seismic Survey
    The Ministry of Economic Development and Petroleum hereby informs the public that pursuant to the Petroleum Act the Government of Belize, through the Ministry of Economic Development and Petroleum and the Geology and Petroleum Department, will be conducting a regional seismic survey in the deep offshore territory of Belize east of the barrier reef and in the Exclusive Economic Zone (EEZ), excluding all marine protected areas as well as all areas banned from petroleum exploration which includes the barrier reef, the atolls and all World Heritage Sites with a 1 kilometer buffer around all these areas. The survey will be done in deep water only and away from any major tourist activity, fishing areas or spawning sites. This survey is part of a larger regional geophysical survey currently being done by the United States Government and the Mexican Government in the US Gulf of Mexico, the Mexican Gulf of Mexico and east of the Yucatan Peninsula to gather new regional data to advance the knowledge of the geology and hydrocarbon systems of these geological provinces. Belize was invited to participate in this regional program and take advantage of the opportunity to acquire invaluable geological data over the deep waters of Belize where there is currently no data. Belize has taken the decision to participate in this regional program with the US and Mexico.

    A mess in the lands department. Double titles sprouting up.
    3 Double land titles at Bradley's Bank Santa Elena. photos and a video.

    Hurricane Earl and Caldonia: A Feel good story...
    On August 4th Hurricane Earl made landfall on Belize. This hurricane had a huge impact on several areas in Belize. Not only in San Pedro, Belize City and San Ignacio. There were and still are many more villages affected. One of them is Caledonia close to Orange Walk where the people make their living cutting sugar cane. We heard from this village since the family from one of our worker is living there. The hurricane destroyed the crops and the people have no work, no income, no money to buy food. When we talked about this to our family on our last trip to Germany. Claudia's Mom immediately decided to help. She used her birthday party as a fundraiser. Instead of getting any presents, she asked friends and family to donate some money. In the end she raised more than 3.300 BZ$. She gave us the money and we arranged everything here. We bought more than 1.800 lbs of rice, beans and flour, as well as coffee and for families with little children we bought milk and diapers. Yesterday we distributed everything to 45 families. Thanks to everybody who supported this little project and a special thanks to a wonderful person (Claudia's Mom) who was so generous starting this fundraiser.

    A contingent of Belizean musicians attends the World Music Expo
    Thousands of musicians have gathered in Santiago de Compostela, Spain for WOMEX, and an official delegation from Belize is among them.The leading event of its kind in the world, WOMEX attracts more than 2,500 delegates from 90 countries. The event offers the opportunity to set up a booth at the Music trade Fair where there are more than 680 exhibiting companies from 54 countries and more than 270 stands for networking and forming new partnerships.The Belizean contingent will include:Jackie Castillo, NICH Representative. Ms. Castillo, a well-known singer and employee of NICH, will staff the Belize booth, where potential buyers of Belize music can meet with managers and promoters. It will also create a space to share the Belizean experience with the rest of the world and bring awareness to Belize.Troy “DJ Dalla” Flowers is arguably the most popular and influential DJ in Belize. Undoubtedly a tastemaker and influencer from Corozal to Belize city. Dalla has the top music video show and his own brand of rum.Tyfara Andazi Panton, One of the founding members of Flavaz Entertainment as well as Chairperson on the Interim Board for the Belize Association of Promoters and Producers (BAPS). Ms. Panton, along with the other members of her team, maintain the momentum of recognizing Belizean artists Belize Music Awards. Through this project Flavaz has been able to focus on recognizing Belizeans who choose to invest their energy in positive contributions to the Belizean Society through music.Clayton Williams aka "C Wills" is one of our most dynamic talents. Following the path of greats like Andy Palacio, C Wills is one the leading performers on the punta/paranda scene. He plays guitar, sings, writes and lights up the stage.

    OCEANA Belize: Cabinet approves seismic testing for Belize's waters
    Every year tens of thousands of visitors come to dive in Belize; the Great Blue Hole is one of the most popular tours. There's a special rush to diving amongst stalactites in a giant sinkhole at sea. But really, any dive in Belize is exciting. At its sitting on October 11th 2016, Belize's executive arm, the cabinet approved seismic testing for Belize's waters; see photo for coverage area. The Department of the Environment did not recommend an environmental impact assessment be done beforehand. Oceana believes that all Belizeans should be made aware of the potential short and long impacts of this technology before the first airgun is fired. Some studies suggest the airguns' blasts will travel for hundreds of miles underwater. Belizean waters are less than 300 miles from the apex of the Exclusive Economic Zone inwards. What's the rush? According to the Inspector of Petroleum, the survey has a tentative start date of October 20th.

    Rayjon Eyeglass Team to Corozal
    Rotary calls out on our community assistance for a great cause. Please help - "Back in 2011 the Rotary of Corozal hosted the Rayjon Eyeglass Team from Canada for a free eye testing and glasses clinic. While they did exams and fitted people with glasses volunteers greeted the villagers, signed them in and filled out the paperwork for those unable to do it themselves. Those of us that participated remember the smiles and the tears when someone realized all they had been missing because of poor eyesight? It made the work worthwhile. They are coming again and we could sure use your help. They arrive on the 5th of Nov. set up on the 6th and start the Clinic at 8AM Monday morning the 7th. They will try to see at least 100 people a day and will be here through Friday the 11th.

    St. John's College Junior College Cultural Day

    BELIZE INTERNATIONAL FILM FESTIVAL
    Opening night for this year's festival will feature two compelling indigenous language films: Yochi Film by Ilana Lapid and Ixcanul by Jayro Bustamante.

    Wavemaker AGM 2016
    On Saturday October 15th, 2016, men, women, and students from across the country gathered at the George Price Center in Belmopan City to partake in the Oceana Wavemaker Annual General Meeting (AGM). Since its inception in Belize in 2009, Oceana has been campaigning to protect Belize’s economically important marine resources from threats and risks involved in offshore oil activity, as well as indiscriminate gear, such as gillents. This year’s AGM came at a critical time in Oceana’s campaign against offshore oil activities given Cabinet’s recent approval of seismic airgun testing in Belizean waters without the benefit of an Environmental Impact Assessment. In her address to the attendees, Vice President of Oceana in Belize Janelle Chanona shared, “We know that seismic is a first step to other exploratory measures like drilling. Belizeans have already taken a very public and a very clear position on offshore oil already; offshore oil has national and permanent implications—it is an industry that all Belizeans, all of us, need to discuss and decide together what happens next. And that’s truly the thrust of all our campaigns, informed decision making.”

    GOB RESPONDS TO OCEANA’S COMMENTS ON THE GOVERNMENT OF BELIZE’S DECISION TO CONDUCT AN OFFSHORE SEISMIC SURVEY
    On October 12, 2016, Oceana published a press release titled “OCEANA SAYS ‘NO’ TO SEISMIC AIRGUN SURVEY IN BELIZE’S OFFSHORE AREA”. The Ministry of Economic Development and Petroleum would like to take the opportunity to clarify several misleading statements made in Oceana’s press release. Oceana has claimed that “Seismic testing…is an extremely loud and dangerous process…”. Oceana also claims “… the magnitude of the proposed seismic activity is likely to have significant, long-lasting, and widespread environmental and economic impacts for Belize.” GOB refutes or disagrees with these statements. The planned offshore seismic survey will be carried out using an acoustic source as the energy source for the mapping of the subsea geology. This acoustic source is directed downward to the seafloor, the sound is short lived and it decreases rapidly in energy away from the acoustic source. While it may cause temporary disturbance to marine life within the immediate area, it has not been proven, from scientific studies, to cause any significant, long-lasting, widespread environmental and economic impact to the marine environment, as Oceana claims.

    Tshirt Party for kids
    Its that time of year again. Our 3rd annual Tshirt Party for kids ages 2 - 14. Adults MUST accompany kids and everyone MUST wear a Halloween Tshirt from Tshirt Factory. There will be a haunted passage by Confetti and face painting by Muse Salon. Rules, ticket price and additional info in flyer. See you there on Oct. 30th.

    Ya'axche rangers
    One of the many important roles that Ya'axche rangers do regularly is monitor and gather crucial information on threatened tree species that have limited information. Rangers are recording reproductive patterns (such as when trees produce flowers and seeds) of Dalbergia stevensonii, Mortoniella pittieri, Cymbopetalum mayanum, Pouteria amygdalina, Chiangiodendron mexicanum, Macrolobium sp. and Platymiscium dimorphandrum.

    CAWS Chili Cook Off
    The Cayo Animal Welfare Society is having their 2nd annual Chili Cook Off on October 29th. It'll be at the Bamboo Bar during the big Halloween party. "You got Chili game? Categories: Bean, No Bean, Vegetarian, and Best Theme- well it is tied to Bamboo Bar's Halloween Party! Please message to enter or email at cayoanimalwelfaresociety@gmail.com by October 19th to enter!"

    BELIZE FISHING REPORT: October 9th – October 15th, 2016
    It was our extreme pleasure to host the wedding of Tim and Ashley who are longtime friends of El Pescador. A beautiful group of almost 50 guests took part and a few went fishing, including the groom of course! The weather was not the best ever but not the worst and the fishing remained strong with more permit coming to hand than tarpon.

    Splashers!
    Join us this week at Crazy Canucks Beach Bar to paint!


    FOR TODAY'S BELIZE WEATHER, CLICK HERE

    Click for our Daily Tropical Weather Report.

    Specials and Events

    Last night's TV news on Channel 7, Channel 5, LOVETV, PGTV, West Vision (Cayo) and CTV 3. Also with the most recent Open Your Eyes, Rise and Shine Morning Show, and the Dickie Bradley Specials


    The Belize Barrier Reef is Being Held at Gun Point
    Airguns, that’s what they call them! Our government is putting them in our waters without asking us Belizeans if it is okay. Airguns blast shock waves through the water that are powerful enough to penetrate the seafloor. For dolphins and whales, it can cause deafness, disturbs communication, and disrupts migration patterns. The Belize Coalition to Save Our Natural Heritage strongly support the non use of seismic exploration. In a press release the organization stated that on Wednesday, October 12, 2016, the environmental community exposed the fact that seismic testing has been approved for offshore Belize; and more disturbingly that the survey would proceed without even the benefit of an Environmental Impact Assessment. The environmental community immediately asked the Cabinet to stay its decision to approve the seismic survey pending the submission of additional material and information regarding the impacts of seismic to marine environments and associated industries such as fishing and tourism.

    Strike on Hold, Classes Resume Tomorrow
    The Belize National Teacher Union (BNTU) wishes to inform the nation that the membership has decided to put the strike on hold and return to the classrooms on Wednesday, October 19, 2016, while keeping an eye over the execution of the agreements reached. The BNTU remains committed to our good governance and respect for the workers agenda and reserve its option to re-engage in industrial action if necessary. In a press release, the BNTU thanked the Almighty Father for his guidance and divine interventions throughout this process thus far. They also thanked the Belizean public, especially parents, who supported their action to address the list of good governance, transparency, accountability, and respect for the workers issues. "The activities they engaged in as part of the stand up for Belize campaign and industrial action could not have been as extensive and successful as they were without the tremendous support of parents, social partners, and friends of the BNTU from across the length and breadth of Belize and our regional body the Caribbean Union of Teachers (CUT). BNTU sincerely thanks everyone!"

    Belize and UNICEF Work on Empowering Children With Disablilities
    Belize’s Special Envoy for Women and Children and UNICEF hosted a two-day conference under the theme “Breaking Barriers for an Inclusive Society and Empowerment for Children with Disabilities” on October 13, 2016 and October 14, 2016 at Radisson Fort George Hotel and Marina, Belize City. In total, 36% of children aged 2 to 9 are at risk of having one or more disabilities whether physical, auditory, visual or learning. Children with disabilities are one of the most marginalized and excluded groups in society. Facing daily discrimination in the form of negative attitudes, lack of adequate policies and legislation, they are effectively barred from realizing their rights to healthcare, education, and even survival. Their disabilities also place them at a higher risk of physical abuse, and often exclude them from receiving proper nutrition or humanitarian assistance in emergencies.

    Six Belizeans Detained by Guatemalan Navy
    The Government of Belize (GOB) wishes to inform the public that six Belizeans were detained earlier this afternoon by a Guatemalan coastal patrol vessel, while they were fishing in the Gulf of Honduras. The Guatemalan coastal patrol vessel intercepted the Belizeans in an area at sea at a point between the mouth of the Moho River, Toledo District, Belize and Punta de Manabique, Izabal, Guatemala. The Guatemalan Navy claimed that the Belizeans were illegally fishing in Guatemala.

    Belize Teachers’ Strike Reaches 11th Day
    As the Belize National Teachers Union (BNTU) moves into its 11th day of teachers strike on October 18, 2016, the National Committee for Families and Children (NCFC) has expressed in a press release that it is deeply concerned and regrets the plight that our children are currently facing as they are being deprived of one of their fundamental rights, which is explicitly stated in the Convention on the Rights of the Child; that of the right to a good quality education. Article 28 states that, “you have the right to a good quality education and be encouraged to go to school to the highest level you can.” In fact, article three of the convention states that when adults are making decisions that the child’s welfare should be the paramount consideration.

    Channel 7

    Teachers' Strike Over, Lasted 11 School Days - Longest In Memory
    Kids, you'd better pack those schoolbags tonight - because the teachers' strike is over, and tomorrow, classes resume as normal at schools across the country. It's been a long break - the strike went for 11 school days - which is the longest teachers strike in memory; in 2005, it lasted for 10 days. But this afternoon, after meetings at all the district branches, the National teachers Union announced that they are putting the strike on hold and returning to the classroom tomorrow. It's a huge relief for teachers and parents, but it's not over - because the teachers say they will keep a watchful eye over things. Today, the BNTU National President, Luke Palacio, flanked by other leaders within the union, held a press briefing to announce that the strike is on hold. He gave us sort a report card grading of the Prime Minister's compromise on each of their demands that were contentious. Here's why the teachers have voted to return to the classroom:...

    PM Sends Saldivar Home, Pending Legal Review Of Partnership With Danny Mason
    Last night, we told you all about John Saldvivar's latest imbroglio. A document from the company's registry shows that in August of 2015, he and accused murderer William Danny Mason became business partners in a business named Belmopan Bandits Sporting Club Limited. Now, this is after Saldivar had denied being Mason's business partner. In his defence, Saldivar says he cut off all relations with Mason one month after that business was incorporated and says the company is now defunct. But, the Prime Mister had said it would be another story if he found out that Mason and Saldivar were business partners - as had been claimed.

    Senior Counsel Michael Young's Death By Gunshot, Suicide Suspected
    At 1:00 this afternoon, the legal community and the wider society was shocked when news went out that prominent Belizean Senior Counsel, Michael Young had been found dead in his home in Bella Vista, Belize City. Media reports say that his wife found him in the master bathroom dead at around 1:00. Reports say a gunshot was heard an hour earlier at around noon in the quiet Bella Vista area. Police found Young's licensed firearm on the ground beside him. He had a single gunshot to the head. No suicide note was found. According to reports, the 61-year-old Young showed up to work as usual this morning, and left the office early at around 11:00. It is presumed that he went straight home where, reports say, Young took his own life. This is not confirmed and police would not confirm it. In fact, they wouldn't even confirm that young is dead, that is even after we saw medical examiner Dr. Mario Estradaban leaving Young's home, and a covered body in the back of a police pickup leaving the residence. Senior Superintendent Linden Flowers, still denied that Young's injuries were fatal. Here's what he told the media...

    UDP's Belmopan Mayor Says His Own Councilor Forged Signature
    Prime Minister Dean Barrow's Cabinet is going through all kinds of upheaval this week - but another UDP leader - this one at the municipal level is also going through changes. The UDP Mayor of Belmopan Khalid Belisle has had to make a criminal complaint against one of his own councilors. A release from the Belmopan City Council reports that the councilor, Gene Briceno Lopez has been detained by Belmopan police. In his complaint, Belisle alleges that councilor Briceno Lopez forged his signature and illegally used the council's official stamp. The mayor learned this when he was today presented with a document bearing that forged signature and unauthorized stamp. Now usually these matters are dealt with internally, but Mayor Belisle made the report to police immediately and Councilor Briceno has been relieved of her portfolio pending the outcome of the investigation.

    Two Men Charged For Vicious Police Beatdown
    The 2 men who allegedly put a savage beat down on a Camalote cop have been charged. Belhem Guzman and Sanjay Casey were charged today with attempted murder, Dangerous harm, Aggravated assault and use of deadly means of harm. They will be arraigned tomorrow. PC Mark Rodriguez was at Serenita Bar on Sunday night when Guzman and Casey allegedly attacked and viciously beat him. Reports are that the men thought that Rodriguez had called the cops on them for smoking weed at the bar. But Rodriguez's wife had told us that it was a big misunderstanding because Rodriguez was texting her, not the cops. We will keep following Rodriguez's condition.

    Belizeans Who Were Detained And Released Tell Story
    As we told you last night, the Guatemalan Coast Guard detained 6 Belizeans in the Gulf of Honduras. They were out fishing in 3 separate boats when they were intercepted "between the mouth of the Moho River in Belize and Punta de Manabique, Izabal, Guatemala. Government's press release didn't give much details but today we spoke to one of the men who was detained, Yemeri Grove Villager Winston Thompson. He told us via phone what happened on this fishing trip with his wife and friends. And we also have an interview with another one of the men courtesy PG TV: VOICE OF: Winston Thompson, Fisherman" "We were out fishing and they had this big Guatemalan coast guard boat with a big gun covered in the front and a big gun in the back. This boat was about 60 to 75 feet long, a huge boat and there was another skiff, this one was about 30 feet long, and it had a 250 horse power out board motor at the back and this had 3 people on board, one of which was armed with a machine gun, I'm not familiar with them, I think it is a machine gun and they drove up to me and they asked me for my documents...."

    Celebrated Cyclist Takes Plea For Causing Friend's Death In Accident
    In May of 2011, elite cyclist Marlon Castillo was behind the wheel when he crashed and his friend and cycling buddy Ariel Rosado was killed in the passenger seat. He still had to face criminal charges for causing his friend's death. Today, after two days in court, the now 29 year old Castillo, acting on the advice of his attorney Dickie Bradley, pleaded guilty to the lesser charge of causing death by careless conduct. Castillo made a mitigation plea this morning saying, quote, "Ariel Rosado and I grew up together. We rode the cross country...on the same team. I am truly and very sorry for what happened. Something like this has never happened to me before and I am so sorry." His attorney asked the court to render justice with mercy and to not send Castillo to jail. Justice Lucas who accepted Castillo's guilty plea told him that while he will reserve his sentencing for this Friday. Justice Lucas warned Castillo that he better return on Friday with money to put down a payment as he will be imposing a fine.

    GOB Blasts Back At OCEAN Over Seismic
    For the last week OCEANA and other organizations in the environmental community have been calling on the Government to address the recently commissioned seismic surveys off the coast of Belize. Well today, they got their response. The Ministry of Economic Development and Petroleum issued a press release today responding to and refuting many of the challenges OCEANA made in its letter last week. According to the release, the seismic surveys will not have any long standing effects on the marine life in the surrounding area, and note that acoustic sound used in surveys will not affect a large area. The release also claims that many of the other serious claims made by OCEANA were not backed up by accurate scientific evidence. The Ministry insists that careful research on seismic operations was done in order to present accurate information for Cabinet's approval. The release also maintains that the Government has taken necessary steps to ensure the safety of the fishing and tourism industries by banning petroleum exploration near the barrier reef, the three atolls, and other World Heritage Sites.

    Family Loses Everything On Raccoon Ext.
    A Raccoon street family lost everything in a late night blaze. Shantia Gill and her kids were out at the time of the fire but only returned to find the charred frame of their house. Today we spoke to a neighbor who was awakened by the flames. George Willoughby, Neighbor: "About a couple minutes to 12:00, I was asleep and the flame woke me up and the heat woke me up and when I came out I saw the house on fire. When the fire truck came and they took long to out the fire and it kept on burning while they took out the fire. I was afraid, when I got up, I was afraid, I didn't know what to do, I ran out of my house, the flames almost spread to my house because of the big blaze." Courtney Weatherburne, 7News: "But your house wasn't damaged at all?" George Willoughby, Neighbor: No my house wasn't damaged. It can't be any electrical problem because no one was home. I am so sorry for them, look how their house burnt, I don't know what they will do."

    Cayo Land Mix Up Causes Commotion
    Since the Vega scandal broke, more questionable land deals have been popping up. In fact, there is an ongoing dispute over the Bradley's Bank Estate in Santa Elena that erupted this morning. Police reported that the title owner, businessman Santiago Mendoza went to the 20 acre estate this morning and threatened to bulldoze all the houses off his property because government hasn't paid him compensation. When we spoke to Mendoza this evening he told us that he never sold the land to government and that they just took it over. Mendoza has been trying to get compensation from the government for 6 years but he says, they simply won't budge. Mendoza also told us he did not threaten anyone on the property. All he wants is compensation from government, not to move anyone from the land. Of course, the other side to this story is that - sources tell us that as many as 60 lots in this area are controlled by political kingpins, allegedly titled using names of persons who do not even know their names were used.

    PM's Many Challenges
    This is a hint of the can of worms that lies buried inside the files at the Lands Department. Now, even the PM admitted years ago that it is a hotbed of corruption, but now that bed is on fire, in public view. But, is that why the Prime Minister moved former minister Gaspar Vega after the last general election in November of last year? That's what we asked him yesterday:… And while the PM didn't want to tackle that one head on, he also had to play it carefully with another question, this one about his sons - and whether they had benefitted from any kind of land deal: And so now, while the land issue is looming, and the Prime Minister's Cabinet is going through serious changes, tonight at least he doesn't have the teachers strike to worry about. That ended today and teachers return to school tomorrow.

    Waiting For DNA Results
    In December of last year, the home of Lebanese diplomat, Sarkis Abou Nehra, was broken into and almost cleaned out. Several guns and ammunition, pieces of jewelry and other items were taken from the residence. Abou Nehra was not in the country at the time, but his caretaker and his wife and child were. During the invasion the family was attacked, and the wife was raped. 18 people were initially charged for an assortment of crimes ranging from aggravated assault to rape. But charges against most of them have been dropped. Apparently, authorities have been unable to link several of the accused to the invasion of Abou Nehra's home. Ladyvile police commented on this yesterday:… Charges for aggravated burglary against Gerson Grinage and Randolph Coleman were withdrawn, leaving only Brandon Baptist, Tyrone Meighan, and brothers, John and Sheldon Grinage to stand trial.

    Northside Cops Get Props
    Today at the Queen Street Police station in Belize City, two police officers were given awards for outstanding performance during the months of August and September. Constable Andrews and Special Constable Bevans were given certificates and plaques to commemorate their achievements, and they spoke to the media about what the awards mean to them... SC Hpesoj Bevans - Officer of the Month, September: "I love meeting people, dealing with people, helping people because in this line of duty we are supposed to protect and preserve life and property. And I take that very seriously as I got about my beat every day. And it takes determination, dedication, desire and discipline to do all these things. Like the Apostle Paul says, I have fought the good fight, I have kept my faith, I have kept my course, what it thought for me is the crown of righteousness which the lord my God has prepared for me. For you to win the prize, you must run the race, and that's exactly what I do every day in my work. I work so that one day my boss can recognize my good work like that they did today and I really appreciate it, it makes me want to strive and work harder, that one day maybe if God permits I might be wearing stripes on my shoulder."

    Channel 5

    Belize National Teacher’s Union Votes to Put Strike on Hold
    The overwhelming number of branches of the Belize National Teachers’ has agreed to end their eleven-day industrial action as of this evening and return to classes on Wednesday morning. This [...]

    Teachers’ Union Reviews 8 Points, Says They Got Most of What They Asked For
    The Union says that its eight-point agenda, the three percent salary adjustment deferral and Social Security coverage to and from work were just about fulfilled.  There was no agreement on [...]

    Union Pleads With School Managers Not to Dock Salaries
    As the teachers and students return to class, there is concern about possible punitive measures including withholding of salaries for the eleven days of absences by teachers. The B.N.T.U. has [...]

    Teachers Say Thanks with Final Rally on Saturday, But Say Fight Will Continue for Good Governance
    The B.N.T.U. picked up many endorsements from the wider society, but in terms of major support, both financial and in muscle on the street, was it enough to have pushed [...]

    Michael Young is Dead at 61; Acclaimed Senior Counsel Suspected to Have Committed Suicide
    Senior Counsel Michael Young, a well-known and brilliant legal mind is dead at age sixty-one.  He is the victim of a self-inflicted gunshot wound.  The shocking news of his untimely [...]

    Dickie Bradley Reflects on Life of his Relative
    Late this evening, News Five spoke with attorney Richard ‘Dickie’ Bradley, a relative of Senior Counsel Young.  He shared with us a brief reflection on the personal and professional life [...]

    Defence Minister John Saldivar Sent on Leave in Wake of Fresh Danny Mason investigation
    On Monday, the P.M. announced that Minister of Agriculture Gaspar Vega had resigned from cabinet, but not as area rep. Today, there is another move that will affect cabinet, but [...]

    Belmopan City Councilor Detained by Police after Forgery Report
    The office of Mayor of Belmopan Khalid Belisle has confirmed this evening that Belmopan Police have detained City Councilor Gene Briceño Lopez based on a report of alleged forgery. Mayor [...]

    Should Minister Gapi Vega Remain in G.O.B.?
    And our question for tonight is: Having resigned from Cabinet, do you think Minister Gapi Vega should remain in G.O.B.? Send your comments and responses using your SMART phones to [...]

    Who Owns Bradley’s Bank Land; Development Company or Santa Elena Residents?
    Land scandals are popping up everywhere. Earlier today, in Santa Elena residents of the Bradley Bank area were up in arms because the property to which they had titles for [...]

    Prime Minister Faces Up to “Wrongdoing” in Government
    Monday’s bombshell announcement was that former Deputy Prime Minister Gaspar Vega had tendered his resignation as a member of Cabinet with immediate effect.  His departure from government follows information revealing [...]

    Resignation Versus Termination: Prime Minister Discusses the Difference
    The new Minister of Natural Resources, Vanessa Retreage presented PM Barrow with overwhelming proof that there was, at the very least, a questionable land transaction involving Vega’s son. In many [...]

    Was Prime Minister Giving ex-Deputy the Easy Way Out?
    So, did PM Barrow smell a whiff of corruption in the Ministry of Natural Resources prior to the November fourth general election and waited until afterwards to reshuffle his Cabinet? [...]

    Vega’s Rival Monchi Cervantes Ready for Bye-Election in Constituency
    Still on Vega….his political opponent in Orange Walk North is P.U.P. standard bearer Ramon ‘Monchi’ Cervantes Junior.  Both politicians have a history of enmity which includes a lawsuit filed against [...]

    Fire Wipes Out Family Home in Belize City
    A fire destroyed a home shortly after eleven last night in Belize City.  Shantel Gill wasn’t at home on Iguana Street Extension when fire engulfed the wooden house and completely [...]

    Mother of Arson Victim Pleads for Help Solving Mystery
    Caroline Hamilton, the mother of eleven year old eleven year old Aaron Gabourel who was killed in a fire on October fifth, is pleading with those who have information on [...]

    Marlon Castillo Pleads Guilty in Ariel Rosado Accident Death
    Twenty-nine year old Marlon Castillo, a prominent cycling champion and butcher by trade, today pleaded guilty to a charge of causing death by careless conduct in the death of childhood [...]

    Department of Environment Clarifies Seismic Testing in Belizean Waters
    For the past two weeks, we have been telling you about the proposed multi- beam and seismic testing that will be taking place in Belize’s offshore. Last week, G.O.B. issued [...]

    Testing Methodology Will Not Affect Marine Environment
    Chief Environmental Officer Alegria gave a little bit of details about the methodology being employed. He explained that it is an acceptable form used across the world. Alegria said it [...]

    Belize City Council is Preparing to Introduce Long-Awaited Trade License Reform
    The Belize City Council is preparing to introduce long-awaited trade license reform in the commercial capital which should see business owners getting some relief in the area of trade licenses.  [...]

    Eastern Division North Names August and September’s Top Cops
    Two good cops were today recognized for their work and commitment to the Belize Police Department. Every month, the Department awards an officer with the “Officer of the Month” award. [...]

    CTV3

    BNTU Puts Strike On Hold, Classes To Resume Tomorrow
    11 days ago the Belize National Teachers Union embarked on nationwide strike action in pursuance good governance and labor related issues. It has been well over two weeks that over 95% of the nation’s schools have been closed as parents and even students stood behind teachers mandate for a better Belize, but what we can tell you today is that the strike action has been called off and classes resume tomorrow countrywide. National president Luke Palacio addressed the media this afternoon after receiving the decisions taken by each of the 10 branches. Palacio says the majority voted in favor of putting the strike on hold. President Luke Palacio – Belize National Teacher’s Union: “Having polled our membership we have determined that we have made sufficient progress as it relates to our eight demands to the government of Belize that was sent to them in a letter dated September 12th.”

    Vega Approves One Million Dollars As Land Compensation
    As the saying goes, when it rains it pours and it appears that the skies have opened on the scandals of this Government, and the Ministry of Natural Resources in particular. In yesterday’s newscast, we began telling you about the 2012 land transaction that will have your head spinning by the time we’re finished. It involves a company called Ron J Limited and the Government of Belize. In January 19 2012, Ron J Limited bought 1.6 acres of land in the Placencia area from the Government for $6,540. It is identified by these land papers as Block 36, Parcel 3438. On August 06, 2013, he was issued a land title certificate signed by then Minister Gaspar Vega. However, on July 14, 2015, under very strange circumstances, Ron J turned around and sold back the same property to the Government. But it wasn’t for the $6,000 plus Ron J bought it for. These documents seen here, showing the sale agreement between Ron J’s director Jude Nagendran and the Ministry of Natural Resources, show that Ron J Limited got paid $1,000,000 for the same land.

    Well Known Attorney Found Dead Inside His Home
    The family of high-ranking attorney Michael Clarence Edward Young is tonight in bereavement after the news broke earlier this afternoon that Young had taken away his own life while at his residence located in the Bella Vista Area in Belize City. Reports indicate that Young’s body was discovered in his bathroom with his licensed fire arm lying beside him. Reliable sources informed the media that Young had been acting in an unusual manner over the past few days. During an interview with the media taken at the time during the processing of the scene, Superintendent of Police, Linden Flowers stated that though details surrounding Young’s untimely death are still sketchy, police are currently looking into the matter in an effort to investigate what really transpired today.

    LOVE FM

    Teachers’ Union Calls Off Strike; Classrooms to Reopen
    The strike has been placed on hold as classes are scheduled to resume tomorrow countrywide. The announcement was made today by the President of the Belize National Teachers Union, Luke Palacio, who was flanked by members of the union including Keesha Young, the Executive Secretary. According to Palacio, majority of the district branches decided that […]

    Prominent UDP Attorney Dies in His Home
    Just after one o’clock this afternoon, reports reached our news centre of a shooting incident in the Bella Vista residential community just off the Philip Goldson Highway. Considering the fact that it is somewhat of a gated community, the first thought was that perhaps it was a home invasion or robbery but minutes after the […]

    PM to Probe Into the Bandits, Saldivar and Mason; Saldivar Placed on Leave
    Events unfolding over the last twenty four hours have brought a dark cloud over the Barrow administration and by extension, the United Democratic Party. Within one day, a Cabinet Minister was asked to resign on the heels of a land scandal; a prominent UDP attorney has died and a Belmopan City Councillor has been detained […]

    Belmopan Mayor Reports Councillor to Police for Forgery
    A Belmopan City Councilor has been detained by police pending investigations. The City Councilor is Gene Briceno Lopez and she is being accused of forging the signature of Belmopan Mayor Khalid Belisle and illegally using the city council’s official stamp. Belisle was the one who reported the matter to Belmopan Police. Belisle was presented with […]

    Fisherman Gives Account of Being Taken by the GAF
    Residents of the Toledo District have expressed concerns after six Belizean fishers were taken yesterday into Guatemalan waters by Guatemalan Marina military personnel yesterday. Correspondent Paul Mahung spoke with one of the fishermen. PAUL MAHUNG “

    Bradley Says Reform Is Necessary But Must Be Strategic
    Gaspar Vega has resigned from his ministerial seat after reports surfaced and confirmed by Prime Minister Dean Barrow, that Vega’s son, Andre Vega was involved in a land scandal. Vega had acquired a parcel of land at two thousand five hundred dollars then later flipped for four hundred thousand dollars which the Government of Belize […]

    Elrington Says Belize Is Not Unique to Land Scandals and Corruption
    Based on the feedback and comments being made on social media regarding the land scandal involving former Cabinet Minister Gaspar Vega and his son, Andre, the sentiments are that of anger and upset. As it relates to the explanation by the panelists at yesterday’s press conference, the sentiment is that of disbelief that something of […]

    Parents Protest in Northern and Western Belize
    As we mentioned earlier, teachers will return to the classrooms tomorrow. In the days leading up to the teachers’ decision, some parents had expressed concern on the prolonged strike. Yesterday about twenty parents staged a demonstration in Santa Elena Town in the Cayo District. Their demonstration led them in front of Santa Elena Roman Catholic […]

    PM Explains How Land Compensations Went Under the Radar
    Yesterday after the Attorney General had laid out the facts surrounding the parcel of land near the Haulover Bridge that costed the Government eight hundred thousand dollars in compensation payments, we asked the Prime Minister who also holds the Finance portfolio to kindly explain how such a payment could have gone under the radar and […]

    Outstanding Police Officers for August and September
    Being a law enforcement officer may be deemed by many as just another form of employment and while the Belize Police Department has been stained with cases of police abuse and corruption, there are many passionate and efficient officers who take pride in what they do. Today, Love News encountered two of them as the […]

    Amandala

    BNTU balks, but PSU, APSSM say yes to Barrow
    Teachers will not report to classes tomorrow, Tuesday, as the Belize National Teachers’ Union (BNTU) heads into its eleventh day of protest. Today, Prime Minister Dean Barrow met with the BNTU, the Public Service Union (PSU) and the Association of Public Service Senior Managers (APSSM,) offering two new proposals. Firstly, in exchange for their unanimous acceptance of the three percent deferral of their salary adjustment until next April, the Prime Minister announced that government would pay the unions an interest of 5% on the sum of the deferral, which hovers at around $600,000. He also proposed that he would table legislation to amend Section 13 of the Social Security Act, allowing for coverage of employees who travel to and from work in vehicles other than those owned by their employers.

    Lands Department’s $800,000 scandal
    Two persons highly connected with the ruling United Democratic Party (UDP) walked away with a total of almost a million dollars from the Lands Department in the wake of a shady land transaction scheme. Attorney Sharon Pitts, a UDP insider, and Andre Vega, son of former Deputy Prime Minister and UDP Deputy Party Leader Gaspar “Gapi” Vega, each netted $400,000 of taxpayers’ money, and Pitts was additionally given .62 acres of land. Both individuals were the recipients from the ruling administration of privately-owned land at Mile 5 on the Northern Highway, in Belize City. Despite evidence presented to government officials at the Ministry of Lands that the land was already owned, Lands officials vacated the original title and parceled the land between Pitts and Deputy Prime Minister Gaspar Vega’s campaign manager, Hilmar Alamilla. The Lands Department sold Alamilla 1.124 acres of land for $2,500, and Pitts applied to lease 2.75 acres of land around the Northern Highway in Belize City and obtained permission to survey 1.5 acres of land for $10,569.

    Guatemala military grabs 6 Punta Gorda residents
    Six Belizeans were held by the Guatemalan Armed Forces (GAF) today after they allegedly invaded Belizean waters and towed the petrified Belizeans for hours in southern waters, warning them that the GAF would begin to assert themselves in waters which the fishermen know to be their traditional fishing grounds. Whereas the Guatemalans are claiming that the Belizeans were found in Guatemalan waters, Eric “Ricky” Foster, 33, a fisherman and farmer of Punta Gorda, Toledo, told Amandala tonight that he was well inside Belizean territory. He told us that other residents of Punta Gorda saw the Guatemalan vessels nearby as well. Foster said that he was abducted near Moho Caye, north of Punta Gorda, by Guatemalan military traveling in a Columbian skiff and a Guatemala-flagged gunboat, which had two other confiscated Belizean fishing vessels in tow.

    Gapi bolts from Cabinet
    Hon. Gaspar “Gapi” Vega, former Deputy Prime Minister and Deputy Party Leader of the United Democratic Party (UDP), tendered his resignation to Prime Minister Dean Barrow on Sunday. At a press conference held today, Monday, at the Best Western Belize Biltmore Plaza in Belize City, PM Barrow announced that Vega’s resignation had been accepted. Vega is the first Cabinet Minister to resign from Cabinet since the Barrow administration took office in 2008. His resignation comes almost seven days after his son, Andre Vega, was named in a questionable land transaction in which he was reimbursed by Government with $400,000, for land for which he had paid only a pittance. The land, which he had bought from his father’s campaign manager, who himself had bought it from Government for a pittance, was actually owned by a businessman, Carlton Russell.

    GOB pays Ashcroft US$67.3 mil
    Amandala is reliably informed that on Friday, October 14, 2016, the Government of Belize paid US$67.3 million, in the specified US currency, to the former shareholders of Belize Telemedia Limited (BTL)—Dunkeld International Investments Ltd. and BTL Employees Trust, two companies controlled by British billionaire Michael Ashcroft—following a ruling which the Caribbean Court of Justice (CCJ), Belize’s final appellate court, handed down on Thursday, September 29, 2016. Eamon Courtenay, SC, attorney for the Ashcroft companies, told Amandala that his clients were paid by the Government on Friday, in line with what was stated in court, with interest paid up to October 14, 2016. The final amount (50% of the total arbitration award and interest) is due on the anniversary of the decision issued by a foreign arbitration panel in June, in a legal dispute over the nationalization of Belize Telemedia Limited that dates back to 2009.

    PUP demands immediate criminal investigation
    The People’s United Party welcomes the news of the resignation of Gaspar Vega from Cabinet, but yet this is not enough. This news was expected after revelations of the rank corruption in the Ministry of Natural Resources, which resulted in the fraudulent enrichment of his son, Andre Vega. In fact, the Prime Minister, in his press conference this afternoon, repeatedly called what has occurred a “mistake,” as if the son of the Minister was just erroneously given $400,000 of taxpayer dollars as a result of a “slight” glitch or miscommunication in the Ministry. The documents leaked from the Ministry have revealed that not only Andre Vega but Sharon Pitts benefitted from no less than institutionalized corruption in the Ministry, a process whereby persons are granted title to land which is already privately owned.

    Orange Walk nearly upset BDF
    Police United was resting, and the FC Belize home game against Belmopan Bandits FC was postponed due to a number of Bandits players traveling with the national “A” team over the weekend to Valladolid, Mexico; so only three games were played yesterday, Sunday, in Week 10 of the Premier League of Belize (PLB) Opening Season 2016-2017. And for a while, it looked like one of those would be a major upset. There were no surprises in reports from down south, where Placencia Assassins visited Freedom Fighters FC at the Victor Sanchez Union Field in Punta Gorda, and game away with a 2-0 victory with goal from Dellon Torres (15’) and Justin Linarez 66’). Most fans kind of expected the result, though by a bigger margin, from out west at the Norman Broaster Stadium, where home standing Verdes FC got the 2-1 win over Wagiya FC. Verdes got on the score card first with a Wagiya own goal by Erwin Middleton (17’), and Jarret Davis (24’) increased the lead to 2-0, before Evan Mariano (80’) cut the lead in half for Wagiya.

    CYDP Peace Cup Tournament at the MCC
    The CYDP Peace Cup Tournament 2017 continued over the weekend with 2 games each on Saturday and Sunday at the MCC. In the opener on Saturday, October 15, game 1 saw Ladyville FC and Ebony Lake FC playing to a 1-1 draw. Shawn Young shook the net for Ladyville, while Travyon Martinez scored for Ebony Lake. In game 2, Coast Guard FC continued on their winning ways with a 7-1 shellacking of Survivors FC. Steven Martinez had a hat trick (3 goals), Addier Duran scored 2, and Edward “Bull” Lawrence and Adgar Adderly added 1 apiece for Coast Guard.

    SSBA Basketball Tournament moves into second half of season
    The basketball tournament that is presently being hosted by the San Ignacio & Santa Elena Basketball Association (SSBA) has reached it midway point, as 9 games were played this past weekend at the Victor Galvez Stadium in San Ignacio Town. On Friday night, the girls of Belmopan Shock finally got the upper hand on the defending champs, Western Queens, defeating them for the first time in two seasons, 39-35. Belmopan Shock was led by Kaylani Reid and Enid Dakers who netted 11 and 8 points, respectively. Western Queens’ top scorers were Jesika Prom with 16 pts and Shirley Codd with 10 pts. In game 2, Tuff Enuff defeated Sergeant Peppers Savages, 53-43, in the Under 23 division. Douglas Valley was the top scorer for the game with 25 pts, including 6 three-pointers, while Brian White chipped in with 9 pts. Kyron “Tut” Molina scored 20 pts for Sergeant Peppers Savages, including 5 three-pointers, while Elvert Ariola netted 9 pts.

    SSBA Basketball Tournament moves into second half of season
    A release today from the Football Federation of Belize (FFB) says that Belize has been selected in Group A for the CONCACAF Beach Soccer Championship Bahamas 2017, which was determined in a draw today, Monday, in Florida. Other Group A members are Bahamas, Jamaica and Guyana. Group B includes Mexico, Guatemala, Canada and Guadeloupe; Group C – USA, Trinidad & Tobago, Antigua & Barbuda, and US Virgin Islands; and Group D – El Salvador, Costa Rica, Panama, and Turks & Caicos. Belize’s Group A schedule consists of games against Jamaica on Monday, February 20; Bahamas on Tuesday, February 21, and Guyana on Wednesday, February 22 of 2017.

    Editorial: Pharisees, publicans, and propaganda
    When United Democratic Party (UDP) Cabinet Ministers, Hon. Michael Finnegan (Mesopotamia) and Hon. Tracy Panton (Albert), held an urgent press conference on Friday afternoon, October 14, it was less than 24 hours after the leaders of the striking teachers of Belize had met, for the second time in two weeks, with the Rt. Hon. Prime Minister of Belize, Dean O. Barrow (Queen’s Square) and his team of advisors. Hon. Finnegan was able to appeal to his audience (the press conference was televised live on the UDP’s WAVE television station and its major segments were broadcast in the nation’s various radio and television news packages that evening) for public support for the UDP government against the striking teachers on the grounds that the Prime Minister had given the teachers almost everything they wanted during the Thursday afternoon meeting of October 13. While it has been established during their recent industrial action that the teachers represent the vanguard of national probity where Belizean governance is concerned, the teachers are not a professional political organization, and they were badly outmaneuvered by the Prime Minister on Thursday.

    Teachers’ social activism and education
    Dear Editor, So the Peaceful Constructive Belizean Revolution continues. This maturing-adult nation is finding out that democratic governments can be as corrupt as corrupt can be. If change cannot come from the top, then it has to come from the nation’s citizens. Not surprisingly, the majority of the teachers have re-awakened from their social justice hibernation after eleven years. After all, there is no other non-political organization that can lead the charge against government corruption but the Belize National Teachers Union (BNTU). The schism first came to the nation’s attention when the government did not honor a 3% salary adjustment in July 2016. This meant that the teachers walked out of the banks empty- handed, which made teachers ask each other if it was a mistake.

    Kent Clare is new head of FIU
    Former Income Tax Commissioner, Kent Clare, is the new head of the Financial Intelligence Unit (FIU), the chief function of which is to counteract financial crimes. The FIU is also tasked with sharing information and cooperating with foreign financial intelligence units in the fight against financial crimes. Information reaching our newspaper is that Clare assumes the position as head of the FIU following the departure of Joy Grant, who moved over to the Central Bank earlier this month. Grant replaced Glenford Ysaguirre as Governor of the Central Bank. Clare has worked for decades at the Income Tax Department, and he was appointed as Commissioner of the department, effective January 1, 2011.

    PUP demands immediate criminal investigation
    The People’s United Party welcomes the news of the resignation of Gaspar Vega from Cabinet, but yet this is not enough. This news was expected after revelations of the rank corruption in the Ministry of Natural Resources, which resulted in the fraudulent enrichment of his son, Andre Vega. In fact, the Prime Minister, in his press conference this afternoon, repeatedly called what has occurred a “mistake,” as if the son of the Minister was just erroneously given $400,000 of taxpayer dollars as a result of a “slight” glitch or miscommunication in the Ministry. The documents leaked from the Ministry have revealed that not only Andre Vega but Sharon Pitts benefitted from no less than institutionalized corruption in the Ministry, a process whereby persons are granted title to land which is already privately owned.

    Breaking Belize NewsPJ

    John Saldivar on Leave of Absence Pending Legal Opinion
    “The Office of the Prime Minister announces that Hon. John Saldivar, Minister of Defence, has been put on one week’s leave of absence,” according to a Government of Belize press release. “Hon. Saldivar has said that he took steps after September 2015 to put […]

    BNTU members to return to the classroom
    The Belize National Teachers’ Union (BNTU) has issued a press release informing the nation that the membership has decided to put the strike on hold and return to the classroom on Wednesday, October 19, 2016. “The BNTU remains committed to our Good Governance and […]

    Prominent Attorney commits suicide
    There are reports that prominent attorney Michael Young Sr. committed suicide today. According to a senior police officer, the incident happened this afternoon at his home in Ladyville. BBN has confirmed that Young shot himself to the head with his own weapon. Young was a […]

    Businessman and Government tangle in Santa Elena; Bradley’s bank residents caught in the crossfire
    Residents in the Bradley’s Bank area of Santa Elena in the Cayo District are outraged as yesterday, businessman and real estate developer, Santiago ‘Shang’ Mendoza, informed residents that the 20 acres of land that they reside on belongs to him. He produced two original […]

    Government to participate in Regional seismic survey
    The Ministry of Economic Development and Petroleum sent out a release to inform the public that pursuant to the Petroleum Act, the Government of Belize will be conducting a regional seismic survey in the deep offshore territory of Belize east of the barrier reef […]

    Man charged with uncle’s murder
    It made the news when Lincoln Robinson, 42, was slain on the island of San Pedro last Saturday. Robinson, a Belize City south side figure, had left his volatile community and relocated to San Pedro for some time in pursuit of a better life. […]

    Is the P.M. Manager or Magistrate?
    A manager is hired to manage….management has four functions….to plan, organize, lead and control….the end result expected are happy shareholders, customers, employees and community. A magistrate sits behind a desk….wait for cases and evidence to be brought before him….listens to the arguments […]

    Blogs

    Belize Approves Offshore Oil Exploration Starting This Week: ARE YOU KIDDING ME?
    Oil exploration. Near our reef. The reef that supports the livelihood of every single person on Ambergris Caye directly or indirectly. And a large percentage of the country of Belize. “They” plan to use seismic testing – a method that sends compressed air streams and/or sonic waves to the ocean floor to gauge the geological resources that might lay within. (Who is actually doing the testing and how much was the contract sold for?) It is an EXTREMELY controversial method since these sonic waves can travel thousands of miles – causing species, at the best, to migrate away and at the worst, deafness and/or death to animals like whales, dolphins, sharks and more. One might wonder: This sounds incredibly foolish and short sighted. In fact, how is this possible? Surely it can’t be happening. Belize has a system in place called the Environmental Impact Assessment. The Department of the Environment says: “An environmental Impact Assessment, otherwise called an EIA, is a planning tool that promotes environmentally sound development practices. It examines both the adverse and the beneficial environmental consequences of a project design on human health and the natural and cultural environment and insures the development of mitigative measures to address these consequences during project development”.

    A Howler-ween Affair at Caves Branch
    Spotting roaming Howler Monkeys while staying in one of our jungle accommodations can be a welcoming treat for visitors to our Lodge…and if you never heard the thunderous bellows of a Howler Monkey, your first time will be very special as you learn about these primates unique call in the wild. INTERESTING FACTS ABOUT HOWLER MONKEYS: Their calls are said to be the loudest noise produced by any animal. Male howler monkeys use the calls to assess neighbouring troops. These dark, chunky-bodied monkeys with black faces travel in troops of up to ten. These lethargic mammals gorge on leaves, fruits, and flowers. The males’ deep, resounding howls sound like lions roar, but actually serve as communication among and between troops. Remember- it’s not an everyday occurrence that you are able to catch a glimpse these agile tree acrobats in their most natural habitats

    Rio Bravo Conservation and Management Area in Northern Belize
    Measuring more than 360 square miles and comprising approximately 4% of Belize’s total land surface, the Rio Bravo Conservation and Management Area is the largest nature park. Rio Bravo is composed of different habitats, including pine forests, freshwater lagoons, broadleaf forests, and marshes. Once an area that was heavily logged for mahogany and other hardwoods, Rio Bravo is now an important contributor to the environmental health of not just Belize but also neighboring Mexico and Guatemala. With approximately 400 species of birds and 70 mammal species calling the reserve home, Rio Bravo is one of the best places in Belize to see wildlife at its finest. Some of the birds and animals include endangered species like the Morelet’s crocodile, the Central American river turtle, and the Yellow-headed Parrot. Rio Bravo is located in the northwest part of Belize and borders both Mexico and Guatemala. Rio Bravo lies within the boundaries of Belize’s Orange Walk District. The reserve can be entered at a number of points, but the most popular way to experience Rio Bravo is at the La Milpa Field Station located three miles from the La Milpa Maya ruins. There is another field station at Hill Bank on the south shore of the New River Lagoon. Both field stations have rustic accommodations for overnight visitors.

    International Sourcesizz

    Write to Win a Free Trip to Belize
    “The weather is here, wish you were beautiful.” That was my dad’s go-to correspondence while he was away on various business trips, taking him around the country. When my turn to travel the world came, I found myself in dodgy souvenir shops handing coins to a clerk in exchange for my favorite token of travel: a postcard. The love people have for postcards now comes largely from feelings of nostalgia. Recognizing this, the Belize Tourism Board has launched a project encouraging Americans to pick up their pens and write, rather than post on social media or email. The idea is for Americans to send a postcard from their hometown to the Belize Tourism Board with a short message, perhaps describing the town (according to the rules, kindly avoid rude and/or offensive messages). All postcards received by the Belize Tourism Board between now and November 9th will, in turn, receive a response from a local Belizean. One of these responses will name a winner for a free trip to Belize.

    Belize to start blasting for oil near World Heritage site
    Home to the largest barrier reef in the northern hemisphere, Belize is a dream destination for many snowbirds. But the Central American country has recently announced plans to to begin offshore oil exploration through a large swath of its Caribbean Sea waters, putting its thriving marine wildlife in a dangerous situation. The country plans to conduct seismic tests for sub-sea oil reserves starting on Thursday, but the threats to marine life have yet to be assessed. Seismic testing, also known as seismic blasting, is a process that involves the use of air guns or cannons to blast deep beneath the ocean floor. It's an initial step in offshore drilling that helps locate oil deposits.

    President hopeful for more trade, economic cooperation with Belize
    President Tsai Ing-wen underscored Wednesday the importance she attaches to Taiwan-Belize relations and expressed hope that the two nations can seek increased trade and economic cooperation in the future. Tsai spelled out her expectations during a meeting with new Belize Ambassador to the Republic of China (Taiwan) Diane Haylock, who presented her credentials to the president that day. In the meeting, Tsai praised Belize for its participation in Central American and Caribbean forums, its calls for cooperation among island-states in tackling problems caused by climate change, and its concern about issues related to freedom and democracy, peace and stability, and prosperity and development.

    Bahamas to face Jamaica, Belize and Guyana in the 2017 CONCACAF Beach Soccer Championships
    The Bahamas National Beach Soccer Team will face Jamaica, Belize and Guyana at the upcoming regional beach soccer World Cup qualifier event set to kickoff on February 20 in Nassau. The Confederation of North, Central America and Caribbean Association Football (CONCACAF) and Beach Soccer Worldwide (BSWW) today conducted the draw for the CONCACAF Beach Soccer Championship Bahamas 2017, at the Intercontinental Hotel in Doral, Florida, USA. The draw, which determined the groups and match schedule for the tournament, was opened with welcoming remarks from Philippe Moggio, CONCACAF General Secretary and Anton Sealey, President of the Bahamas Football Association (BFA). The event was conducted with the assistance of Bahamas National Team players Gavin Christie and Leslie St. Fleur.

    Professor Helps Maya Artisans Rediscover Their Past, Build a Future
    More than a decade ago, members of a small village tucked deep into the rainforests of Belize realized that the rich cultural history of their Maya ancestors could help them build a sustainable economic future. The San Antonio Women’s Collaborative was formed to create and sell pottery and other items produced in the manner of the Maya civilization, which collapsed more than 1,000 years ago. But there was a big problem: Although they kept many Maya cultural traditions alive, the people no longer knew how to make Maya ceramics. “We had been working so hard to teach ourselves how to make pottery and work with paints,” said Timotea Mesh, president of the women’s collaborative, describing a grueling, trial-and-error process in which it often took three weeks to produce a single piece of pottery. “We were about to quit, until Jeremiah [Donovan] reached our place as a visitor.” That visit by SUNY Cortland’s Jeremiah Donovan, a professor of ceramics in the Art and Art History Department, turned into a four-year quest to help the community unravel the lost secrets of the most advanced culture in pre-Columbian America.

    Scots firm in fraudster link falsely using Tory peer's bank
    The tax haven bank owned by billionaire Tory donor Lord Ashcroft is being used without permission as a base to set up dozens of Scottish firms linked to a fraudster. Amid growing concerns about the reliability of Britain's corporate register, it can be revealed that two Belize companies have been falsely using the address of the HQ of the former Conservative deputy chairman for at least six years. The secretive Belizean businesses - Sherbrook Assets and Whitmoore Solutions - have formed at least 70 Scottish entities, most of them registered at the Fife home of convicted fraudster Anzelika Young.

    Commentary: The Privy Council versus the CCJ - A question of conscience? Part 2
    Since 1970, Jamaica raised the issue of the Caribbean Community (CARICOM) having a final appellate court for its members and, at long last, the Caribbean Court of Justice, the CCJ, was established by an agreement among CARICOM states dated 14 February 2001.Initially, ten members, among them Grenada, signed the agreement and subsequently on 15 Feb 2003 Dominica and St Vincent and the Grenadines did so. Therefore, of the 15 member states, three have still to sign. What are they waiting for? One can easily access the agreement on the internet. Its preamble bravely declares: “THE CONTRACTING PARTIES,CONVINCED that the Caribbean Court of Justice, (hereinafter referred to as “the Court”), will have a determinative role in the further development of Caribbean jurisprudence through the judicial process; CONVINCED ALSO of the desirability of entrenching the Court in their national Constitutions; AWARE that the establishment of the Court is a further step in the deepening of the regional integration process; RECOGNISING the sovereignty of Members of the Caribbean Community; HEREBY AGREE …” to establish the CCJ.

    Videos

  • RiseNShine Morning Show, 135min. his is former CEO of Foreign Affairs ... highly commended David Gibson

  • A crying child's public support for Teachers., 2min. don't care about Politics, but I do care about Belize. I love and appreciate teachers

  • Officially released today! The trailer for Yochi, 1.5min. Yochi, a selectively mute 9-year old Mayan boy, guards a nest of endangered Yellow-Headed parrots in the pine savannah of Belize. When his beloved older brother Itza returns from the city, Yochi discovers he's in debt and has turned to poaching...

  • Crab Races at Crazy Canucks, 5min. Here is a fun Tuesday in San Pedro Belize were we pick a hermit crab, gamble, and watch them race. All in the name of charity of course. Of course when you give a crab a funny name, the announcer Rob spices it up a bit.

  • Belize Sunset on The New River, 1min.

  • INTERNATIONAL CREDIT UNION DAY 2016, 27min. on Open Your Eyes...

  • Murder on San Pedro: “Old Beef” Killed Lincoln Robinson Senior, min.

  • Dolphins by our boat, 1min. This is Belize. Last weekend. Right off Turneffe. The vessels that will be conducting the seismic testing are already docked in Belize. What will we do to stop them? Do we want to continue having beautiful sights such as these dolphins for years to come? or are we okay with gambling and hoping nothing goes wrong? This will not sit well with most Belizeans.

  • Belize - Ambergris Caye 2016 (Sept), 3min.

  • Diving in Belize, 9min. Scuba diving in Belize. I got close to some Caribbean Reef Sharks. Water temps were great at 86 degrees.

  • Open Your Eyes, Channel 5 – UNICEF talks about disability in Belize, 29min. On Channel 5's popular morning show, UNICEF and the Special Envoy for Families and Children talk about the challenges faced by children with disabilities in Belize, progress made so far and what remains to be done to create a truly inclusive society. One step at a time.

  • Belize trip 2016, 4min.

    October 18, 2016


    FOR TODAY'S BELIZE WEATHER, CLICK HERE

    Click for our Daily Tropical Weather Report.

    Specials and Events

    Last night's TV news on Channel 7, Channel 5, LOVETV, PGTV, West Vision (Cayo) and CTV 3. Also with the most recent Open Your Eyes, Rise and Shine Morning Show, and the Dickie Bradley Specials


    The San Pedro Sun

    Lincoln Robinson fatally shot; Deshawn Goff charged for his murder
    Three men were in police custody following the murder of 43-year-old Lincoln Robinson Sr. of San Mateo Area on Saturday, October 15th. On Monday October 17th, Deshawn Goff was officially charged for his murder. The San Pedro Police Department reported that Robinson endured multiple shots while walking home on Barrier Reef Drive around 5:20AM. According to the official police reports, Robinson left the Central Park about 5:10AM, when a male person walked up to him and fired a shot to the right side of his face. Robinson fell to the ground as the person reportedly fired another shot, and then made his escape. After police arrived at the scene Robinson was immediately rushed to the Dr. Otto Rodriguez San Pedro Polyclinic II, where he was pronounced dead at 6:42AM. His body was then transported to the Karl Heusner Memorial Hospital in Belize City for a post-mortem examination.

    CARILED presents economic profile for San Pedro Town
    CARILED representative Leidy Urbina also explained what the project means for the island. According to her, the document presented included statistical and demographic information which pointed out to the opportunities for business growth and expansion and how different obstacles can be addressed. “Looking at the economic aspect of San Pedro, we want to speak about a process that is participatory, inclusive and led by the authorities of the municipality, but with input from the residents of the private sector and the community as a whole,” she said. CARILED and the SPTC invites interested stakeholders to visit their offices where they can have a look at the document detailing the economic profile of the town. Anyone with ideas for business plans can seek professional guidance by visiting the offices of the Town Board on Barrier Reef Drive where the document is available for reviewing. The document supported by CARILED was made solely for the island to be used by residents, the municipality, and private sector and look at the gap for opportunities for investment and MSMEs development.

    Oceana says NO to seismic airgun survey in Belize’s offshore area
    After approval from Prime Minister Right Honorable Dean Barrow and his Cabinet on Tuesday, October 11th, the Ministry of Economic Development, Petroleum and Geology Department will be conducting a multi-beam and sea seep survey to the east of the Belize Barrier Reef. These surveys are meant to collect new data on the geological features of the area, and other countries such as the United States and Mexico will also be participating. Although the Ministry states that tourist destinations, along with world heritage sites will be excluded from the survey, Oceana in Belize and the Belize Coalition is in opposition to seismic testing.

    Senate Special Select Committee holds first meeting; no chair is elected
    The newly appointed Senate Select Committee met for the first time on Wednesday, October 12th. The committee had been designated with the responsibility to hold a private investigation into the immigration scandal revealed in the Auditor General report that unveiled a series of fraudulent cases in the immigration department. One of the objectives of the meeting was to name a Chairperson for the committee. However, the meeting did not go well, and not only was the committee boycotted by the Opposition People’s United Party (PUP), but a Chairperson was not elected. The PUP has called the creating of the Committee as bogus, and demands for an independent and impartial Senate Select Committee to be appointed. Their reasons for not agreeing with the motion created on September 30th include that Minister of Immigration Godwin Hulse voted on the motion, when he should have abstained since his involvement in the scandal is a conflict of interest.

    Ambergris Today

    Belize Allows Seismic Airgun Surveys That Can Kill Marine Life
    Last week, October 12, 2016, Oceana was advised by the Prime Minister, Rt. Hon. Dean Barrow, and the Minister of Petroleum, Hon. Erwin Contreras, that at Tuesday’s meeting, the Cabinet approved the seismic survey of Belize’s offshore area based on the Department of the Environment’s advice that seismic activity does not require an Environmental Impact Assessment (EIA). Oceana has formally requested an official copy of the Department of Environment’s written position provided to Cabinet, in addition to any materials related thereto, on the basis that the Department’s premise is not supported by the best available science. On the contrary, the magnitude of the proposed seismic activity is likely to have significant, long-lasting, and widespread environmental and economic impacts for Belize.

    Misc Belizean Sourcesmzz

    General Medical Physician, Caye Caulker
    CAYE CAULKER'S FIRST PRIVATE CLINIC BY DR.Dimas Sansorez, IS NOW OPEN FOR BUSINESS!! LOCATED DOWN FROM IL PELLICANO, NEXT TO NOE SANDOVAL'S CONSTRUCTION.

    San Pedro Lions Club held its 41st anniversary this Saturday, October 15 ,2016
    New Lion and Leo members were installed making a grand total of 42 Lions and 45 Leos. Leos made history in becoming the largest leo group of the zone and the largest group there has ever been in Belize. There was a lot of dancing thanks to Rompe Raja.

    Compromise on salary adjustment?
    Prime Minister Dean Barrow announced at the close of the meeting with the joint union negotiating team that at least two of the three unions are inclined to agree to a proposed compromise reached today. The third, the Belize National Teacher's Union, will go to its Council of Management for possible endorsement this afternoon. Five percent interest is proposed to be paid on the deferred salary. The unions will be working on proposed related legislation to be sent to Cabinet. Association of Public Service Senior Managers president Sharon Frazer contended that her organization and the Public Service Union have acted responsibly by sticking to negotiating rather than going to the streets, but that does not mean they do not support the BNTU and the good governance agenda and always have. PSU president Eldred Neal held out high hopes for an end to the dispute.

    Our Children’s Education is Priority!
    The National Committee for Families and Children (NCFC) is deeply concerned and regrets the plight that our children are currently facing as they are being deprived of one of their fundamental rights, which is explicitly stated in the Convention on the Rights of the Child; that of the right to a good quality education. Article 28 states that, “you have the right to a good quality education and be encouraged to go to school to the highest level you can.” In fact, article three of the convention states that when adults are making decisions that the child’s welfare should be the paramount consideration.

    Wahoooo! Mahi-mah
    Salwater Life "Tonight's fish fry is not going to taste like chicken!

    Gapi Vega resigns?
    My confidential sources are insisting that former Deputy Prime Minister and Orange Walk North area representative Gapi Vega has tendered his resignation from the Cabinet effective as of today.

    Juvenile Swainson's Hawk over San Pedro
    Well, certainly not what i expected to find flying over San Pedro, but, the birders that persevere are the ones who get the best stuff. First record for SPR?

    Merida Expo Feria Show
    This weekend's update on the Merida Expo Feria Show in Merida.

    Six (6) Belizeans Detained by Guatemalan Navy
    The Government of Belize (GOB) wishes to inform the public that six (6) Belizeans were detained earlier this afternoon by a Guatemalan coastal patrol vessel, while they were fishing in the Gulf of Honduras. The Guatemalan coastal patrol vessel intercepted the Belizeans in an area at sea at a point between the mouth of the Moho River, Toledo District, Belize and Punta de Manabique, Izabal, Guatemala. The Guatemalan Navy claimed that the Belizeans were illegally fishing in Guatemala. After prompt intervention and coordination by Belizean diplomatic and military officials, along with their Guatemalan counterparts, the Belizeans were thereafter released and returned to the location where they were first encountered. GOB has confirmed that the six (6) Belizeans are now safely back in the town of Punta Gorda, where they will be debriefed by Belizean security officials to ascertain all the facts surrounding the incident.

    BNTU Corozal Town Branch
    Teachers are asked to attend a meeting at 10:00 a.m. today Tuesday, October 18th at the Corozal Community College Auditorium. Note: This meeting will be to decide the way forward and to discuss the 8 points in detail as addressed by the Prime Minister. Your presence is very important.

    MAYA EXPO
    Here are some photos of our Yucatec Mayas from Orange Walk participating in "MAYA EXPO" at the Venezuelan Embassy in Belmopan. How nice it would be to see our Yucatec Mayas of Corozal represented in these events around the country all the time.

    Maya Expo at Venezuelan Embassy: The Yucatec Mayas of Orange Walk
    The Belize National Library Service and Information System got some pictures from the Maya Expo, which was held Saturday at the Venezuelan Embassy.

    Peccary
    In the Chiquibul Forest, there are two types of peccaries. This one is the collared peccary. Our expectation is that with further protection these species will start to rebound once more.

    Channel 7

    PM Offers Compromise On Teachers' 3%
    When we left you on Friday the teachers unions said it would be extending its strike until at least Wednesday of this week, because the Prime Minister had put off a meeting with them to discuss the 3% salary increase. Well, the PM didn't want to be held responsible for extending the strike, so he brought up the meeting to today. The PM and his senior financial advisors met with the teachers union, as well as the Public Service Union and The Association Of Public Service Senior Managers - what is called the joint union negotiating team at the Biltmore. When he came out, he seemed confident Government had proposed a meaningful concession. Here's:... Rt. Hon. Dean Barrow - Prime Minister: "I received a communication from a Good Samaritan yesterday that if I moved up the meeting there was a likelihood that we could reach agreement and naturally the quicker we can end the strike, the better. I think it went well. I made some proposals which certainly two of the 3 unions have already signaled that. The BNTU says it is taking those proposals to its council of management this afternoon and it is likely that by the time of our press conference at 2pm, their position should also have been made clear."

    Why Didn't PSU and APSSM Join BNTU Strike?
    So, today makes Day 10 of the strike, and although the teachers got an infusion of support from COLA, which we'll show you later on in the news, all they have right now is a commitment from the business community that they might shutdown - at some unknown date. The teachers are therefore isolated in what has been a punishing 2 weeks, where their salary will more than likely be docked. So, shouldn't the other sister unions be joining them by now? That's what the press asked the other 2 Union leaders, and here's how they answered: Sharon Frazer, Senior Magistrate: "The issues of good governance have been on the negotiating table from the very beginning and not just that, by extension, with the NTUCB. So that these issues have always been there. When in fact the deferral was brought to us, we said okay with the condition that some of these very good governance procedures were put in place. So it is not that we have not been supporting the good governance issue. We have always been there, we've always been supportive and we continue to be supportive and in fact demand that these good governance measures be put in place. So we've not said anything and we have not gone striking because we don't have an industrial dispute, legally for us to be striking would mean that we had an industrial dispute and we don't have one. So we cannot jeopardize our membership in that form and fashion."

    Vega Resigns From Cabinet, Was He Forced Out Due To Scandal?
    And while the unions continue to dominate the news, today politics was making news that would have been a headline on any other day. Last week, the media broke the news about an ugly land scandal. It involved the former Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Natural Resources, Gaspar Vega and his son Andre Vega. Andre Vega was given title for a piece of land near the Haulover Bridge - land which was already owned by someone else. The Ministry was warned about this - but the title was still issued to a Vega's right hand man, Hilmar Alamilla for a pittance, $2,500 dollars. He sold it to Andre Vega for fifteen thousand, who was then entitled to compensation at market value because the government had given him title to land which was already owned. That compensation was valued at four hundred thousand dollars, and though there is a very long queue of persons waiting for compensation - Vega got pushed right to the top, where he got one hundred grand up front and fifty thousand every month. He got his last payment at the end of March, meaning that he had made a profit of over two thousand percent, thanks to taxpayer dollars.

    New "Lands" Minister Catalogues Compensation Racket
    And so while that is the political dimension of the scandal - which has forced a rapid fall from grace for the man who was deputy Prime Minister up to 11 months ago - there is the administrative side of it. Someone has to dig into this compensation case, and the larger racket that was being run with undeserving compensations being awarded. That person in the new Minister of Natural Resources Vanessa Retreage. Speaking at the press conference, she said that everything about this transaction was wrong, and it now has to be made right:... Hon. Vanessa Retreage, Minister of Natural Resources: "It is clear that the government of Belize did not have the right to issue title to land which it did not own. I have given a deadline for the close of business on Wednesday of this week for the information to be provided to me and then thereafter a final decision will be made as to what action will be taken in relation to this matter." "And where it is found that monies have been paid out wrongfully, such monies must be recovered. Unjust enrichment at the expense of government cannot be countenance." After laying out the official position Retreage delved into the details of this dirty deal - which saw four hundred thousand dollars in compensation go to Andre Vega, and another four hundred thousand go to attorney Sharon Pitts. Now most of the details have already been revealed by the media, but Retreage outlined the evidence from the records at Natural Resources. It started in 2011 when Sharon Pitts was wrongly given permission to survey a parcel of land for which title had already been given in 1988:..

    CEO Struggled With, Froze Compensation Payouts
    And, clearly this kind of thing, this undue compensation had been taxing the entire Ministry, and today the CEO, Sharon Ramclam says she had to put a stop to compensation payouts:... Sharon Ramclam, CEO - Lands Department "On the matter of compensation, I have belabored this point many times over at the CEO caucus and it's very frustrating. When I took over the ministry in March 2014 and compensation requests were presented to me, my briefing from the legal counsel and the commissioner on those cases was essentially thorough and in many instances were as a result of duplications."

    Tough Questions For PM
    So, while Gaspar Vega denies any knowledge that the land was private, in fact he must, because otherwise it would mean that he knowingly forced the government into a situation where his son had to be compensated. The documents we have seen says that the Lands Department surveyors told their bosses from as early as 2011 that this piece of land near the Haulover Bridge is private land, and not available for the Government to sell. As we told, Sharon Pitts, who also got 400 thousand dollars in compensation, received a permit to survey, and it was canceled because the Lands Department confirmed that it was private. Today, the press challenged the Prime Minister on the assertion that Vega is innocent of abuse of the public trust, and here's how that exchange went: Daniel Ortiz, 7News: "Is this not an instance of corruption itself sir and will you as the leader of the country take steps to recommend an audit of his term and possibly a criminal investigation?" Rt. Hon. Dean Barrow - Prime Minister: "Sir, you've just heard the attorney general say that an audit has been completed. The findings of the auditor general will no doubt be released shortly. The question of the compensation in this case large, tax payers want to know that we will seek to recover the compensation and I told you that we will and the investigation is ongoing. The minister of lands try to detail for you all that happened, but expressly said that there are certain things that are still unclear."

    Sharon, Super-Patriot Turned Into Wheeler-Dealer?
    What about the other person who got a major come up off the land? We already heard how the Government will try to get back that money from Andre Vega, but they did not say what they will do about Sharon Pitts. For 2 days last week, we had been trying our very best to get a comment from her as to the validity of her compensation of 400 thousand dollars. She hadn't made herself available to us, but today, we got a statement from her which says, quote, "I applied for some 2.5 acres National Land near mile 5 and was issued Lease for (a) reduced amount of 1.6 acres, and on purchase thereafter, obtained title via the Lands Department. I did not know it was private land. Based on my title to the land, I had a legitimate expectation that I would be legally compensated the market value as the norm. 1 Accepted the amount of $400,000, and maintain ownership of the portion which was finally reduced to 0.6 acres not affected by the mistake as a basis for settlement though I felt it was well below market value. My greatest care continues to be for our country, Belize." End quote.

    Faber Fire Starter Charged, Arsonist Previously Accused
    Police have arrested and charged a Belize City man for setting Deputy Prime Minister Patrick Faber's vehicle on fire. Allen Martinez - who was charged for arson 9 years ago - now stands charged again. Police say they are confident but strictly would not go into details. Inspector Juanito Cocom - OC, Ladyville Police: "Twenty nine years old unemployed Allen Jovan Martinez from Central American Blvd Belize City was charged for the crime of arson on the 15th of October 2016." Reporter: "Was that footage clear enough whereby you can definitively say that Mr. Allen is the person in that footage?" Inspector Juanito Cocom - OC, Ladyville Police: "I will not comment more on the investigation. We have some evidence in the respect to that." Jules Vasquez, 7News: "Has he indicated that he's working or that he did it on behalf of anyone? Or did he do it on behalf of himself?"

    Camalote Criminals Viciously Beat Cop
    A police officer was almost beaten to death in Camalote. Last night after 6:00 PC Mark Rodriguez was at Serenita Bar when two men attacked and viciously beat him. They left him thrown on the ground, bloody and unconscious. Reports are that the young men thought that Rodriguez had called the cops on them for smoking weed. According to Rodriguez's wife, it was a big misunderstanding, one that has her husband of 14 years, clinging to life at the KHMH. Reporter: "What was the story? What did he tell you happened?" Cryta Zelaya, Common Law wife: "He doesn't know anything, all he knows is that he went to deal with the lady at the bar, because he has cases with her and she called him for him to go check about a case so it can be settled and that was it. I heard 2 young boys were smoking weed and they were accusing him, that is what the people at the bar were telling me, that they were accusing him of calling police on them because they were smoking weed and that was it, they hit him with a chair and that is what they told me and they beat him on the ground and assaulted him and stabbed him with a knife or something they had and that is what caused all the injury to his body and his mandible is broken."

    Murder Over Drug Turf On La Isla Bonita
    Police have charged Dwayne Goff for Saturday's San Pedro execution. At around 5:10 Saturday morning, 43 year old Lincoln Robinson was walking on Barrier Reef Drive when a man shot him twice to the face at close range. Reports are that Robinson had been hanging out at Daddy Rock's night club earlier, where he got into an altercation with a group of men. Police believe that one man from that group followed Robinson after he left the night club and shot him. Police say this may be as a result of a drug turf war on the island. Robinson has been on the news before, he was charged in May 2014 in connection with the shooting of a 17 year old mother on San Pedro. That was also as a result of a turf war. On a final note, police also told us that the 17 year old's common law husband was shot about 2 weeks ago and just came out of a coma, so they are also looking into that case.

    Saldivar and Mason, Business Partners, Despite Denials
    With all the pressure on the Barrow Administration right now, the Prime Minister just can't afford anymore controversy. But the old William Mason scandal, and the accused murderer's business ties to former Police Minister John Saldivar is making news all over again. It involves documents from the Belize Companies Registry, and the registry certificate for a business named Bandits Sport, which is presumably the parent company for Saldivar Belmopan Bandits Football Club. It's shows that there are 10 shares in the company. Saldivar owns 7, and the other 3 belongs to William Mason. It is signed by both men, and it is dated August 18, 2015. This document proves that Mason is Saldivar's business partner in the company, which is something he had been denying since the gruesome murder of Pastor Llewelyn Lucas became public knowledge. Here he is, from our archives, repeatedly insisting as much:

    PM Backtracks On Business Connection
    So, when we met him this afternoon, we asked Prime Minister Barrow about the disclosures, and he told us that he will have to do his investigation on the document before making any comment: Daniel Ortiz, 7News: "In another matter, documents have been revealed that John Saldivar and William Mason - there is greater degree of relationship where the company registry shows that...." Rt. Hon. Dean Barrow - Prime Minister: "I've heard something. I've not been briefed on that. It is as the lands matter when you asked me on Thursday I had not been briefed - I have now been briefed and that is what the press conference is about this afternoon. Similarly in terms of what you are saying with respect to Minister Saldivar, as soon as I have been properly briefed I will come to you and deal with that in the same way as I'm going to deal with the lands matter this afternoon." This evening, the John Saldivar camp sent out a press release which says, quote, "A document which has been a part of the public record at the Companies Registry since August 18th of last year has been circulated in the media as proof of "a business relationship between John Saldivar and William Mason".

    Hostel Kids Escape, Caught With Loaded Burglar
    Last week Wednesday afternoon, 7 minors, 5 males and two females, absconded from the Youth Hostel. Six of them were caught the following morning with a 42 year old man - whose vehicle was stuffed with loot from a residential burglary in the Belizean/American New Site, in Hattieville Village. Rural Police told us more: ACP Edward Broaster - OC, Eastern Division Rural: "They were all captured as well as an individual with a truck loaded with stolen goods from a burglary in Hattiville where our officers were diligent in intercepting that vehicle. We had several of the individuals who had escaped from hostel with that individual with stolen items from a home in the Hattieville area." Jules Vasquez, 7News: "Had these juveniles been involved in the commission of that burglary?" ACP Edward Broaster - OC, Eastern Division Rural: "A couple of them apparently so."

    Fatal Accident In PG
    A man was knocked down and killed last night on the Southern Highway. Around 6:35, 37 year old Maya Mopan resident Domingo Pau was driving from Bella Vista to PG when an oncoming vehicle with high beams blinded him. Before the vehicle passed him, he saw San Marcus resident Jose Rash on his bicycle in front of him. Pau swerved to avoid hitting Rash but it was too late. Police have detained Pau in this investigation.

    Cabbie Shot In City
    A taxi driver was ambushed and shot on an early morning run. Yesterday morning at around 1:14, 29 year old Emet Baptist picked up a man and a woman at the corner of Central American Boulevard and Banak Street. Baptist took them down Aloe Vera Street as they had asked but when they got there instead of giving Baptist the taxi fare, the man pulled out a gun and demanded money. Baptist handed over $35 and the gunman shot Baptist. He was hit to the finger and shoulder. Baptist quickly reversed and sped off to the hospital. Police continue to look into this shooting.

    Lawless Driver Pulls Gun On Cop
    Earlier on in this segment, we told you about a police officer who was beaten to within inches of his life in a Camalote bar. Well, there's another case of absolute lack of respect for the law in Burrell Boom. That's where the driver of an unlicensed Mazda Tribute pulled a gun on a police officer. The Officer Commanding Rural told us more:... ACP Edward Broaster - OC, Eastern Division Rural: "The driver of that black tribute pulled a firearm on our police officer who was stationed at Burrell Boom. When the message went out, our rural rapid response and relief responded in search for the individual and about 2:47pm, he was found in the Ladyville area. One black and silver 9mm was recovered from a yard along with a cell phone and the individual was captured and has been since charged. He will be charged today for aggravated assault and kept unlicensed firearm."

    Making Trade Licencing Simpler
    We also asked Bradley about his thoughts on the recent land scandal involving the Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Natural Resources and the Environment, Gaspar Vega and his son, Andre Vega. Darrell Bradley, Belize City Mayor: "Well I cannot have a comment on the specific issue, because I am not - I don't know in relation to that. I will say though, that my comments in relation to anti-corruption has been very clear. I would urge members of the public to be aware of the issues in relation to reform. I had the opportunity to read the UN Convention Against Corruption, and it doesn't deal with only the corruption of an elected official. The bulk of that speaks off procurement, it speaks of campaign finance reform. It speaks of controlling the actions of public officers so that there's a significant portion on that in terms of dealing with this issue in a one off area, we've had instances of corruption we in the public, the media, the private sector, elected officials, even private citizens, you need to deal with corruption in a comprehensive way, and reform needs to be comprehensive. I don't want to make a comment because I don't know of the specific circumstances, you're giving me information in relation to the media story, but I think that in all of that, it should not be lost that we need to look at systematic ways to make our government perform more effectively and more efficiently."

    Bradley Comments On Vega Scandal
    We also asked Bradley about his thoughts on the recent land scandal involving the Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Natural Resources and the Environment, Gaspar Vega and his son, Andre Vega. Darrell Bradley, Belize City Mayor: "Well I cannot have a comment on the specific issue, because I am not - I don't know in relation to that. I will say though, that my comments in relation to anti-corruption has been very clear. I would urge members of the public to be aware of the issues in relation to reform. I had the opportunity to read the UN Convention Against Corruption, and it doesn't deal with only the corruption of an elected official. The bulk of that speaks off procurement, it speaks of campaign finance reform."

    Guat Navy Detains, Releases Belizeans
    Information released form the government at newstime tells us that "6 Belizeans were detained earlier this afternoon by a Guatemalan coastal patrol vessel, while they were fishing in the Gulf of Honduras." Government says "the Guatemalan coastal patrol vessel intercepted the Belizeans…at a point between the mouth of the Moho River, Toledo District, Belize and Punta de Manabique, Izabal, Guatemala. The Guatemalan Navy claimed that the Belizeans were illegally fishing in Guatemala." The Ministry of foreign Affairs and the BDF intervened immediately and "the Belizeans were released and returned to the location where they were first encountered."

    COLA With Teachers
    At the top of the news, we showed you this morning's meeting between Prime Minister and the teachers as part of the Joint Unions Negotiating Team. He's trying to bring a close to the strike, while under pressure from the Gaspar Vega scandal which has forced this senior member of his Cabinet to resign due to the public embarrassment it has caused. Part of their stance for industrial action is for good governance, and an end to corruption. Today, COLA, held a press conference to announce that the teachers are not alone. Here is an excerpt of that event where President Geovannie Brackett is declaring why they remain aligned with the BNTU:

    Vega Nephew Almost Came Up On BTL?
    And tonight, we have a brief look at another land deal concerning a Vega relative. This time it's former Deputy Lands Commissioner Nestor Hernandez - who is Vega's nephew. Hernandez was the former deputy commissioner of lands who formed a company named NSV Enterprise. The owners of record are Nestor Eduardo Hernandez and Susanna Angelica Hernandez. Now, here's what happened. BTL already owned a parcel of land in Hopkins upon which it had a tower and phone switch. BTL had title, but through some arrangement, a connected person named Moses Lopez got title for the land in 2013, which he then sold to NSV Enterprise Limited. As we understand it, someone acting on behalf of NSV went to BTL and demanded payment since BTL was on their property. The company balked, and we understand a complaint went to the Prime Minister. We do know that Hernandez was terminated from the ministry in 2014.

    Former Vega CEO Beverly Castillo Williams Has No Worries
    And keeping it in Ladyville, the area representative for that area was a former career public servant turned politician Beverly Castillo, now Beverly Williams. That career as a public officer and her UDP loyalty led her to the CEO's office in the Ministry of Natural Resources back in 2008. She served there under Gaspar Vega until 2013, when she went to pursue her career in politics. So is Castillo now concerned that an audit of the department is underway? That is might unearth dirty deals which went down when she was CEO? Today she bristled at that suggestion and told us she doesn't have the slightest concern:…

    New Beat For New Cops
    And while the dirty cop who did that will have to found, Ladyville today welcomed 10 new officers. They were receiving orientation today, and Broaster says they will have to walk the straight and narrow:…

    Pakeman File Still With DPP
    Today we asked Ladyville police about the status with the Dorian Pakeman file. Pakeman, the Director of the Government Press Office knocked down and killed 45 year-old Gardenia Villager Dean Dawson back in March As we've reported, Pakeman's sample tested positive for the presence of cocaine - but the DPP never got that result because a police officer suppressed it. And at the same time Dawson's blood sample appears to have been tampered with because it had more alcohol than blood. A lot of funny business in this case for sure, and today Broaster said they are following up on instructions from the DPP:

    Seismic Stress
    Last week we told you about the Ministry of Economic Development and Petroleum's plan to conduct seismic surveys in offshore Belize. The environmental community has expressed grave concern about this, especially after Cabinet approved the surveys without an Environmental Impact Assessment. Since then, the Belize Coalition to Save Our Natural Heritage, which consists of organizations like OCEANA and the World Wildlife Fund, has asked the Cabinet to stay its decision until proper assessments can be done in order to determine the effects of the surveys on the marine environment. The Coalition has received no response from the government, however a statement from SeaBird Exploration, the company contracted to do the surveys has them up in arms. According to SeaBird's release, the company will be conducting surveys in Belize starting mid-October. This is concerning to many because SeaBird describes itself as "a global provider of marine acquisition for 2D/3D and 4D seismic data, and associated products and services to the oil and gas industry."

    Channel 5

    Gaspar Vega Leaves Cabinet; Position Under Pressure Following Land Deal
    Speculation was rampant all morning that once powerful Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Natural Resources and, more recently, Minister of Agriculture, Gaspar Vega, had resigned this morning. The conjecture [...]

    Ex-DPM Remains O.W. North Rep; Barrow Acknowledges Transaction Was “Mistake”
    Vega has been in cabinet since 2008 and was first named Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Natural Resources. According to the Prime Minister, “his personal friend,” is not demitting [...]

    Current Lands Minister Admits G.O.B. Did Not Have Authority Over Parcel
    The entire transaction outlining the initial acquisition of the property in question, as well as its allotment and subsequent purchase by Pitts and Vega was presented in great detail by [...]

    Government Paid Out Compensation Sums Over Several Months
    Both Pitts and Vega were compensated by government more than eight hundred thousand dollars over the course of seven months.  In the case of Pitts, payments commenced in March 2015 [...]

    Barrow Family Company Paid Princely Sum for Placencia Land Blocking Their Property
    Even as the Prime Minister was announcing the resignation from Cabinet of Gaspar Vega, additional information was surfacing about land deals that stink to high heaven.  The following has to [...]

    More Big Money for Placencia Lands Paid to Vega Family and Friends
    There is another instance of compensation paid for land in the peninsula. In February 2012, unknown to the residents of Placencia, who had been agitating for a reserve, land was [...]

    Prime Minister Offer Compromise to Joint Unions Negotiating Team – B.N.T.U. Has No Decision
    On Friday, the Belize National Teachers’ Union had declared that its strike action would go into a third week. It insisted that this was because the critical labour issues, including [...]

    P.S.U. and A.P.S.S.M. Defend Approach to Negotiation
    The B.N.T.U.’s representatives rushed out of the Biltmore to their meeting without speaking to the press. However, the heads of the Public Service Union and Association of Public Service Senior [...]

    No Industrial Dispute, Says A.P.S.S.M. President
    According to Senior Magistrate Frazer, it is important to note that the P.S.U. and A.P.S.S.M., unlike the B.N.T.U., do not believe there is presently an industrial dispute because negotiations have [...]

    John Saldivar Claims Old Bandits Company with William Mason is Dead
    When the William “Danny” Mason affair exploded in July, the man most affected was then-Minister of National Security John Saldivar. It didn’t take twenty-four hours after his arrest for Saldivar [...]

    Accused Arsonist of Deputy P.M.’s Government Vehicle is Charged
    The man believed to have set fire to DPM Patrick Faber’s government issued Mazda SUV appeared in court this morning. Allen Martinez was picked up by Ladyville Police on Thursday [...]

    Murder on San Pedro: “Old Beef” Killed Lincoln Robinson Senior
    He was charged back in 2004 with aggravated assault, threat of death against a police officer and discharging a firearm in public, as well as the possession of an unlicensed [...]

    San Pedro Police Claim Success in Stemming Drugs Trade
    But police on La Isla Bonita have been fighting drug trafficking clamping down on the perennial issue on the island. In fact, statistics are that since the start of the [...]

    Rural Eastern Division Still Confident in Sarkis Abou-Nehra Case
    Of eighteen persons initially charged in connection with the December home invasion at the house of Sarkis Abou-Nehra, twelve have been freed of charges. In an update, police said that [...]

    Police Working on Dorian Pakeman File; Investigate Evidence Tampering
    Who excluded the Dorian Pakeman cocaine positive forensic lab test from the file that went to the D.P.P.? This is in connection with the fatal traffic accident in which the [...]

    Chamber of Commerce Pulls Support for Business Shutdown
    A shutdown of businesses by members of the business community is off the table. This follows meetings between the Prime Minister and the President of the Belize Chamber of Commerce [...]

    6 Belizean Fishermen Held in Guatemala Now Safely Back Home
    At news time tonight, six Belizeans are safely back home after being held briefly by a Guatemalan coastal patrol vessel. The men were fishing in the Gulf of Honduras when [...]

    COLA Got the Teachers’ Back!
    Teachers remained away from the classrooms today as the strike entered a third week. But this morning, COLA called a fiery press conference, standing room only at the Radisson’s VIP [...]

    COLA Demands Good Governance Agenda be Implemented
    For each of the demands by teachers for good governance, COLA is demanding G.O.B. to take action. Brackett says that government cannot continue to bury its head in the sand [...]

    Progressive Party Joins In; Says B.N.T.U. Cannot Stand Alone
    The B.N.T.U. has been weathering the storm almost alone, albeit with the support of parents, as the strike continues. At the press conference, the B.P.P.’s Patrick Rogers, expressed support and [...]

    Students and Wil Maheia Speak Out
    Lending moral support to their teachers were two sixth form students who made spirited presentations to the gathering.  A call for other trade unions to join in the teachers’ protest [...]

    “Big Jail” for 2 Teen Runaways Turned Alleged Burglars
    Two hostel boys will be heading to prison. The boys, who are a part of a seven member escapee group, were caught in a vehicle with a man carrying stolen [...]

    Burrell Boom Policeman Held Up With Gun
    A Sunday mid-afternoon aggravated assault on a Burrell Boom Police Officer has led to the detention of one man. PC Larry Sutherland came face to face with a gun and [...]

    Football and Cycling Top James Adderley’s Sports Monday
    Good evening, I’m James Adderley and this is Sports Monday.  

    CTV3

    BNTU To Consult With Membership On Its Way Forward
    The national strike by the Belize National Teachers Union continued today as leaders of the Union met with the Prime Minister in Belize City. But this was not a one-to-one meeting. You would recall that the last one held last Thursday ended in a stalemate. Today’s meeting also included leaders from the Public Service Union and the Association of Public Service Senior Managers and issue was reaching a final agreement on the Government’s proposal for a salary deferral. The PM has not been able to convince the BNTU to support it, but today he made a new proposal which he believes could achieve that, The PM explained. Rt. Honorable Dean Barrow – Prime Minister of Belize: “In return for what would then be unanimous acceptance of the deferral of the 3% adjustment until next year April at that time government will also pay a 5% interest rate on the sum differed which I think should basically come up to something like $600,000.00 to $700,000.00 which would then be prorated among the recipients of the differed salary adjustment. With respect to the Social Security Expanded Coverage which I’ve signal from before I absolutely support that would have to come about by way an amendment to section 13 of the Social Security Act the Unions are proposed in forming a working group to go over the sort of language that would give what we all want but also contains safeguard restriction against abuse.”

    APSSM Supportive Of Teachers And Their Industrial Action
    As we mentioned earlier, the meeting included the PSU and APSSM. Those two Unions at odds with the BNTU. The PSU and APSSM have taken positions that are opposed by the BNTU. First the PSU and APSSM are for a salary deferral while the BNTU isn’t. The BNTU is engaging in industrial action but the PSU and the APSSM say they don’t see the need for it. Despite calls for support in the strike, the PSU and APSSM have stood on the side-lines so are they abandoning their fellow Union brothers and sisters? Sharon Fraser - President, APSSM: “We have been showing solidarity if you notice, the fact that we are not out there is being responsible, behaving responsible, as I said we don’t have an industrial dispute and strike is the last resort and in addition to that we are still negotiating in fact today is a reflection of the fact that we are still negotiating so that we were for the deferral if it is that we were not maybe it would have given us the drive to go towards industrial actions...”

    Group Of Orange Walkenos Picket Against Teachers
    So, while the teacher are fighting for the nation who is fighting for the teachers? Certainly not this group of parents who from last week Thursday have been picketing in front of the La Inmaculada Parish demanding for teachers to stand down from the strike and return to the classrooms immediately. This morning the group was back on the streets while the Belize National Teachers Union met with the Prime Minister to discuss the salary deferral. This time the group of protestors came out with an official permit and wearing white T-shirts. But as they marched through the streets of town the message was the same. Holding placards the group called for the BNTU to cease their industrial action. The peaceful demonstration ended shortly after 10:00 followed by a short gathering at the parking lot of the Banquitas House of Culture.

    Missing Fisherman Presume To Be Dead
    The Belize Coast Guard believes that one of three fisherman from the Village of Sarteneja in the Corozal District, who were fishing near Colson Caye, when they were held up and robbed at gunpoint, and beaten by armed pirates is tonight reported as “missing at sea” and believed to be dead. On the evening of Wednesday October 5th, the men were fishing in the Colson Caye area, near Tobacco Caye, about 18 miles east of Dangriga, Stann Creek District when they were attacked by pirates who stole all their marine products and personal belongings and were then tortured and forced to jump overboard into the sea before their boat was stolen. Reports are while the three fishermen jumped into the sea, one did not resurface. The two men who are said to have survived the ordeal swam to a nearby island and were assisted by other fishermen who called the Coast Guard. While we are aware of the missing fisherman’s identity it will not be reveled in order to protect his family.

    Police Charge Man Accused Of Setting DPM's Vehicle On Fire
    Last week we told you about the vehicle of Deputy Prime Minister Hon. Patrick Faber which was set on fire at his residence shortly after midnight on October 12th and how the perpetrator was caught in the act on surveillance camera. Though the man believed to be responsible for committing the illegal act was detained by authorities the following day on Thursday October 13th, no charges were levied against him until today where he was officially charged with the crime of ‘arson’. During his arraignment earlier today in the presence of Chief Magistrate Ann Marie Smith, Allen Martinez was denied bail due to a number of reasons presented by the prosecutor who stated that one Martinez might interfere with the witnesses if granted bail, two that the offence is that of a serious nature which carries a penalty of life imprisonment, three that the prosecution has a strong case and if granted bail the defendant might not return to court and lastly that Martinez entered the yard of the complainant.

    PUP Calls For Criminal Investigation Into Corruption At Lands Department
    As we told you at the top of the news cast, today former Deputy Prime Minister Gasper Vega, tendered his resignation from the Ministry of Agriculture. While Prime Minister Dean Barrow was not happy with the news, late this evening the People’s United Party issued a release welcoming the decision taken by Minster Vega, but expressed that his resignation is simply not enough. According to the PUP this was expected after revelations of the corruption in the Ministry of Natural Resources, which resulted in the fraudulent enrichment of Vega’s oldest son. In their release the PUP also highlight other infractions committed in the Lands Department while at the hands of Minster Vega and calls for an immediate criminal investigation into the outrageous corruption at the Ministry of Natural Resources. The PUP also adds that PM Barrow seems determined to sweep the corruption under the rug like it is something frivolous and insignificant.

    NCFC Calls For Teachers To go Back To Their Classrooms
    As the BNTU strike entered into its third week today, the list of opposers to the shutdown of schools continue to grow. And while the numbers cannot be compared with those that support the teacher’s movement, the fact remains that there are certain organizations that believe the ongoing strike is going against the rights of a child. One of those organizations is the National Committee for Families and Children, (NCFC) who today issued a press release expressing its concern and regret for the plight that children are currently facing as it states that children are being deprived of one of their fundamental rights- the right to a good quality education. The release goes on to quote Article 28 of the Convention on the Rights of the Child which states “you have the right to a good quality education and be encouraged to go to school to the highest level you can.” Maintaining that the present state of affairs in which Belizean children are out of school for the past two weeks is a direct violation of such article. Adding that NCFC is of the firm belief that children should never be deprived of the opportunity to develop their abilities and talents.

    LOVE FM

    Gaspar Vega Resigns from Cabinet Following Land Scandal
    After ten years in the political arena and eight years in the Cabinet, Gaspar Vega has tendered his resignation as a Government minister. While the rumours were rampant since the weekend, the confirmation did not come until just after two o’clock this afternoon during a press briefing called by the Prime Minister, Dean Barrow. DEAN […]

    The Hot Parcel of Land Near the Haulover for $800K
    Making a profit of just under four hundred thousand dollars in ordinary circumstances would perhaps never happen for the regular citizen but it happened for the son of Minister Gaspar Vega via transactions at the Lands Department which has now led to Vega’s resignation and in-depth investigation into past compensations made via the Lands Department. […]

    PM Meets with Unions to Discuss Salary Deferral
    Today the leaders of the Joint Negotiating Team which includes the Public Service Union, the Belize National Teachers Union and the Association of Public Service Senior Managers met with Prime Minister Dean Barrow. The focus of the meeting was Government’s request for a deferral of the three percent salary adjustment to two thousand seventeen. When government initially […]

    No Reason for PSU or APSSM to Join Strike Action
    While the Public Service Union and the Association of Public Senior Service Managers have expressed solitary with the Belize National Teachers Union, they are not willing to carry out industrial act. According to APSSM President, Senior Magistrate Sharon Frazer and PSU President, Eldred Neal there is no reason why their membership should be on strike. […]

    3 Weeks into Strike Action by Teachers
    The strike by the Belize National Teachers Union has entered its third week. Today the National Committee for Families and Children issued a release in which it says it is deeply concerned and regrets the plight that our children are currently facing as they are being deprived of one of their fundamental rights, which is […]

    SJC 6th Form Students Petitioned to Express Solidarity with BNTU
    The Student Government of St. John’s Junior College started an online petition to express their solidarity with the BNTU. Marissa Cervantes, a student at the Junior College spoke about the objectives of the petition. She said it has amassed five hundred and sixty seven signatures. MARISA CERVANTES “It was an online petition as I understand […]

    COLA’S Stand Strong Ops in Solidarity with BNTU
    The “Operation Stand Strong campaign” which COLA organized held a press conference featuring a panel to speak in solidarity with the Belize National Teacher’s Union. COLA’s objective was to show support for the eight demands the teachers are making from the government and to encourage the public to support Wednesday’s rally. Among the speakers were, […]

    Policeman Savagely Beaten in Western Bar
    A police officer attached to the Belmopan Police Station is hospitalized after he was beaten yesterday evening by a gang of young boys at a bar in Camalote Village, Cayo District. Mark Rodriguez had just gotten off duty and was heading home to San Ignacio when he made a stop at the Outback Ranch establishment […]

    Policeman Sutherland Assaulted in Rural Belize
    Police Constable Larry Sutherland was assaulted yesterday in Burrell Boom Village, Belize District. Rural Executive Officer, ACP Edward Broaster briefed the media on their investigations on this incident so far. EDWARD BROASTER “

    Faber’s Vehicle Fire: Accused Arsonist Denied Bail
    Allen Martinez, charged with arson for allegedly setting fire to a Government vehicle assigned to Deputy Prime Minister, Patrick Faber, was denied bail when he appeared today before the Chief Magistrate, Anne Marie Smith. The prosecutor objected to bail on the grounds that the defendant might interfere with the witnesses if granted bail, that the […]

    Breaking Belize NewsPJ

    Santa Elena protest update – Protestors break lock on school’s gate
    Earlier today about 25 residents and UDP supporters held a protest in front of the Santa Elena Primary School demanding that the school gate be opened and that BNTU branch president, and Principal of the school, Mr. Manuel Medina, resign. A video has surfaced […]

    Chamber will not proceed with national shutdown of businesses
    Following a meeting of the Executive Council of the Belize Chamber of Commerce and Industry (BCCI) held this morning, the Chamber has decided not to proceed with the national shutdown of businesses. At its membership meeting held in Belize City last week, the Chamber’s […]

    6 Belizeans detained by Guatemalan Navy
    The Government of Belize (GOB) has issued a press release informing the public that six (6) Belizeans were detained earlier this afternoon by a Guatemalan coastal patrol vessel while they were fishing in the Gulf of Honduras. According to the release, the Guatemalan coastal […]

    There will be no classes tomorrow!
    The Belize National Teachers’ Union (BNTU) is heading into its eleventh day of strike tomorrow, Tuesday, October 18, 2016. Today the Prime Minister met with the unions and proposed that if they accepted the salary adjustment deferral scheduled for next April, he would pay […]

    PM confirms Gaspar Vega’s resignation from Cabinet
    The Prime Minister of Belize, Rt. Hon. Dean Barrow, has accepted the resignation of Agriculture Minister, Hon. Gaspar Vega. Vega tendered his resignation from Cabinet during a private meeting with PM Barrow on Sunday, October 16th in Belize City. PM Barrow also indicated that he […]

    Vega land scandal continues to unfold even after resignation
    As Prime Minister Dean Barrow announced the resignation of Minister Gaspar Vega, formerly of Natural Resources (Lands), in the wake of a scandal in which Minister Vega allegedly abused his authority to enrich his family and associates through highly suspect land transactions, another report […]

    PM Barrow meets with BNTU
    Prime Minister Dean Barrow exited an impromptu meeting with the Belize National Teachers’ Union (BNTU), Public Service Union (PSU) and the Association of Public Service Senior Managers (APSSM) with smiles stretched across his face. According to Barrow, two of his proposals to the unions […]

    NCFC demands children return to classes
    The National Committee for Families and Children (NCFC) issued a press release today expressing its concern and regret for the plight that children are currently facing as it says they are being deprived of one of their fundamental rights, which is explicitly stated in […]

    Resilience and Optimism – Banana industry fighting to recover
    A major player in Belize’s productive sector, the banana industry is fighting to recover from natural disaster, and from external factors mainly affecting one of the largest farms in Southern Stann Creek. In his Independence Day address less than a month ago, Prime Minister […]

    Santa Elena residents and UDP activists protest closure of Santa Elena Primary School
    About 25 people, comprised mostly of UDP activists and Ministry of Works employees, and led by UDP Chairman, Alberto August, gathered in front of the Santa Elena Primary School shortly after 9 this morning to protest the closure of school. The protestors held placards […]

    COLA to PM Barrow: “Yuh name stink”
    At a press conference in Belize City this morning, COLA’s President Geovanni Brackett held back no blows. He slammed the Prime Minister for negotiating the future of BTL with Michael Ashcroft somewhere in a hotel room in Miami. “Because of this dictator the country has […]

    COLA, BPP and BTV slam GOB on corruption scandals
    Citizens Organized for Liberty through Action (COLA), the Belize Progressive Party (BPP) and the Belize Territorial Volunteers (BTV) led a press conference in support of the Belize National Teachers’ Union (BNTU) today in Belize City. These organizations were joined by students of the St. […]

    Gaspar Vega reportedly to resign from Cabinet
    Unconfirmed but credible reports to BBN indicate that Minister of Agriculture Gaspar Vega has announced that he will resign from Cabinet in the wake of a scandal which surfaced last week implicating the former Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Lands in a […]

    Belize to receive $400 million from CDB
    Belize is set to receive a loan of US $200.5 million from the Caribbean Development Bank (CDB) to finance a 2016-2020 strategy plan aimed at addressing social, environmental and economic challenges. “CDB remains a committed partner in helping Belize achieve sustained growth and development. This strategy will bolster […]

    Leaked document proves business relationship between John Saldivar and William Mason
    A leaked document apparently proves ownership of the Belmopan Bandits football team between Minister of Defense John Saldivar and accused murderer William Mason. Saldivar had previously reported to the media that he had accepted a $50,000 contribution to the Bandits from Mason. He said […]

    Can BNTU hold strong?
    Almost 240 hours or 14,400 minutes ago the Belize National Teachers’ Union (BNTU) first announced that it would strike. Since then it has lost thousands of dollars in salaries and logged behind in the progress of its syllabus. This sacrifice so great and so […]

    Road traffic accident in Ladyville; Motorcycle collides into a taxi
    A road traffic accident was reported in Ladyville at around 8:30 last night. A motorcycle carrying two persons collided head on into a taxi that was about to make its way onto the highway. The incident occurred in front of the Shell gas station. […]

    Police officer beaten by two men in Camalote
    A police officer in the village of Camalote in the Cayo District was badly beaten by two men last night. The officer has been identified as Mark Rodriguez. According to reports, the police officer is in a serious condition at KHMH and the two […]

    Blogs

    Pregnant, beautiful and happy
    Ngai contacted me and he told me he saw my work and he would love me to capture his moments with his wife, before she leave the country to have the baby… and we had a beautiful shoot, on the lagoon, on a beautiful private island… more like a sandbar… and was fantastic! Moments of tenderness, happiness and excitement from both parents is what I captured… Enjoy few of their beautiful images.

    International Sourcesizz

    Belize to begin oil exploration near threatened World Heritage site
    The Central American country of Belize today announced plans for the start of oil offshore exploration across a vast stretch of its Caribbean Sea waters. Belize's coastal area consists of the largest barrier reef in the northern hemisphere. Conservationists warn that seismic testing for subsea oil deposits, which is set to begin on Thursday, has dangers for marine life that have not been assessed. If it proceeds, the testing will occur just over one kilometre away of the fragile Belize Barrier Reef Reserve System World Heritage site, which has been listed as in danger by UNESCO. WWF believes that an oil spill anywhere within Belize's waters could be catastrophic for residents whose livelihoods depend on healthy marine and coastal ecosystems. A spill also could threaten neighbouring areas of the broader Mesoamerican Reef System, which extends to Mexico, Guatemala and Honduras, WWF cautions.

    Belize: IFSC Cancels Banc De Binary Trading Licence
    The Belize financial watchdog, the International Financial Services Commission of Belize (IFSC), has issued a warning notice against BDB Services (Belize) Limited, trading under the name of Banc De Binary, for non-compliance with some of the conditions of the annex related to the licence granted for “Trading in financial and commodity-based derivative instruments and other securities”. According to the watchdog, Banc De Binary, which is registered at No. 5 Cork Street, Belize City, Belize, is no longer licensed by the IFSC and has warned investors and other persons concerned to exercise caution since the aforementioned entity is no longer permitted, either by the IFSC or any other competent authority in Belize, to carry out any type of trading activity. The update was released by IFSC Director General Neri J. Matus, who last issued a warning against TradeFxP, a firm which falsely and fraudulently claimed to hold a trading in securities licence issued by the IFSC when it was in fact forged.

    CDB to provide US$200m to fund Belize strategy plan
    The Barbados-based Caribbean Development Bank (CDB) says it will provide US$200.5 million to Belize to finance its 2016-2020 strategy plan. It said that the strategy will help the country address some of the social, environmental and economic challenges it faces. “CDB remains a committed partner in helping Belize achieve sustained growth and development. This strategy will bolster the government of Belize’s ongoing reform efforts by supporting interventions that will support inclusive social and economic development, environmental sustainability, and the promotion of good governance,” said CDB’s director of economics, Dr Justin Ram. The regional bank said that the strategy aims to drive five development outcomes including increasing competitiveness and productivity; improved quality and access to education and training; improved social sector outcomes; enhanced environmental management and reduced vulnerability to natural disasters; and improved governance and development planning.

    WestJet Traffic Keeps Surging
    Canadian carrier WestJet is seeing a major traffic surge, according to the company’s recently-released data. The company reported 1.89 billion revenue passenger miles in September, which represented a 16.3 percent increase in traffic over the same month in 2015. Available seat miles rose by 12.6 percent to 2.36 billion, while load factor reached 79.9 percent. The latter helped WestJet report a record load factor in the third quarter, during which it flew 5.9 million guests, also a record.

    IMPACT Justice project continues its legal education survey in Barbados and southern Caribbean
    The Canadian government-funded Improved Access to Justice in the Caribbean (IMPACT Justice) project continues its survey of legal education this week. The IMPACT Justice consultants, Professor Jane Ching, Dr Noel Watson and Dr Adrian Cummins QC, will be conducting interviews from October 17 – 19 in Barbados before moving on to St Lucia (October 20), St Vincent (October 21 to 23), Grenada (October 24 – 26), Guyana (October 27 – 30), Trinidad (October 31 – November 3) and Belize (November 4 – 8). In each country, interviews are being arranged with attorneys general, ministers of education, deans of faculties of law, principals of law schools, presidents of law societies, bar associations and prominent attorneys-at-law. The survey of legal education, which is now in its final phase, was suggested by the Council of Legal Education. It is intended to consider the purpose of legal education and revisit the “West Indian System” to see how thinking has changed since it was designed in the 1960s and consider whether it is adequately meeting the needs of the region, particularly having regard to, inter alia:

    CDB approves US$200 million country strategy for Belize
    The board of directors of the Caribbean Development Bank (CDB) has approved a country strategy for Belize for 2016 to 2020. The strategy proposes support of US$200.5 million for Belize over the four-year period. It will help the country address some of the social, environmental and economic challenges it faces. Dr Justin Ram, director of economics, CDB, noted: “CDB remains a committed partner in helping Belize achieve sustained growth and development. This strategy will bolster the government of Belize’s ongoing reform efforts by supporting interventions that will support inclusive social and economic development, environmental sustainability, and the promotion of good governance.”

    Videos

  • Scott Scuba Belize Dive 2, 45min.

  • Belize diving Maxi, 11min.

  • GOB Responses to BNTU Demands, 1min.

  • Intermagica San Pedro Belize- Featuring Adrian Vega, 8.5min.

  • Belize, 4.5min. Maravilhas do fundo do mar.

  • Sleeping Giant Lodge- Belize, 4min.

  • Belize Adventures 2016, 3.5min. Butterfly gardens, hidden waterfalls, and the Mayan ruin of Tikal make up only a part of the wonderful adventures in Belize.

  • Belizean Yucatec Mayas dancing the U Pool K'eek'en, 3min. Belizean Yucatec Mayas from Orange Walk dancing the U Pool K'eek'en for the Maya Expo 2016 in Belmopan .

    October 17, 2016


    FOR TODAY'S BELIZE WEATHER, CLICK HERE

    Click for our Daily Tropical Weather Report.

    Specials and Events

    Last night's TV news on Channel 7, Channel 5, LOVETV, PGTV, West Vision (Cayo) and CTV 3. Also with the most recent Open Your Eyes, Rise and Shine Morning Show, and the Dickie Bradley Specials


    The San Pedro Sun

    Wolfe’s Woofer: On Stage
    “Grandpa, I’m in a play tonight,” Davin told me when he and Melody came over. “Will you come out to see me?” “I wouldn’t miss it,” I told him. “What kind of play is it?” “Teacher says it is a play about farming and agriculture. I’m going to be dressed in a carrot costume.” “I was in one of those plays when I was your age,” I said. “It was called The Fall Harvest play and I was an ear of corn. Corn doesn’t have to speak.” “Neither do carrots.” That night we went to the school’s outdoor theater which consisted of a group of chairs facing a wonderful little stage with red curtains. As usual we waited an hour and nothing much happened except a lot of little people running around. “I need to go to the bathroom,” I told Sherry. “Ask Melody where it is.” Melody leaned over and said, “It’s one of those doors behind the stage. It’s easy to find.”

    What’s new?
    As we head into the tourism high season, many changes are underway in San Pedro. Here are a couple to be on the lookout for: On Saturday, October 9th Ian Anderson of The Farm House Deli in Belmopan City held a farmer’s market at Mahogany Bay Village, Curio Collection by Hilton located south of San Pedro Town, and to a champagne toast announced that they would soon be opening a Farm House Deli on Ambergris Caye. They will also be opening a location in Placencia, so no matter where you are in the country you just might be close enough to taste artisanal cheeses, breads, meats, fresh garden produce and fermented and pickled vegetables. Both new locales are slated for opening in mid-December, and in the meantime Anderson promises to regularly host and attend farmer’s markets in the area. Also sporting new offerings is Belizean Breezes Soap Company who has relocated to Pescador Drive beside Pink Boutique. Not only does Belizean Breezes have a new location, but also a larger and more improved store. Owner and operator Lynda Perdue is thrilled to have a bigger space to truly double her inventory and best serve the increasing demand for her fabulous products. “We also supply gift shops at resorts all over Belize, and even guest soaps in their rooms, so I’m very happy to have doubled my space so I can create more,” she said. “We have a lot of fun in here, I have great conversations with people who come in all the time and I am so happy to be able to provide them with all these great new products.”

    Doctor Love: No News is Good News
    Dear Doctor Love, I find myself becoming more and more depressed as I read and watch the news stories from around the world today. The beating of women, murders, molestation of children, abuse of animals and rage against everything is overwhelming. These horrible things are staying with me and sometimes they can keep me sad for the whole day and I cannot sleep at night. I cannot stop reading the stories and then I cannot seem to get them out of my mind. What can I do to feel better? The depression is really affecting my job and my family. /s/No News Is Good News

    Misc Belizean Sourcesmzz

    Michelle Nuñez is representing our jewel at Miss America Latina in Cancun Mexico during the course of Ten Days!
    Last Night, Miss Belize had the opportunity to showcase her National Costume/Traje de Fantasia to the Anticipating Audience. Her Costume was designed by Gabriel Garcia Gmx Orange Walk handcrafted with Rhinestones, Sea Shells and Pearls! Not any ordinary costume; she is representing The Richness of our Caribbean Sea! As an island native, is only natural to want to express her passion and love for the sea! Belize's Caribbean Sea offers shimmering glitters to an underwater Hidden Gem! Sparkling Rays come alive as the Rays of the Sun give life to Corals , Sea Star and underwater life! Our Crystal Blue Caribbean Sea gives every tourists an magical and shimmering experience lasting a lifetime!

    Poets Corner: Political Poker
    By Abdulmajeed K Nunez. Now that the Chamber Has grown a pair What will be Barrow's gear? Will he fold? Will he play bold? Will he cry foul? Will he sign the UNACC? Will he ostracize the Teechaz? Then side with the his business brokaz Barrow dah no bout the people, he's about cheddaz Dah time fi di people demand A national labour party fi di land Dah time Belize go republic Dah time fi we people benefit Dah time fi get rid of the queen Let’s vote a new president een But Sir Colville needs to leave the scene If we truly want start clean

    Residents of Caye Caulker held a candle light vigil in support of the teachers and the BNTU
    The BNTU is protesting against corruption in governance. They are demanding that the government curb corruption and sign onto UNCAC, the United National Convention against Corruption. Kudos to these patriots. The BNTU is calling for country-wide demonstrations on Wednesday. They are asking all businesses to allow their workers time off to join in the demonstrations.

    Bntu Orange Walk Branch
    Urgent: all teachers are invited to gather at the Queen Elizabeth Park, Monday, October 17, 2016 at 9:00a.m. as we will be spreading our message to two more villages. Bus will be departing promptly at 9:00 a. m. Come with green TShirts

    Bntu Orange Walk Branch's Massive Candle Light Vigil
    Everyone is invited to Bntu Orange Walk Branch's Massive Candle Light Vigil Monday, October 17, 2016. Come one, come all! Plug into the POWER OF PRAYER!

    JULES ON Krem Sunday Review
    Jules was in top form this morning on Krem’s Sunday Review, and host, YaYa Marin Coleman, was the right kind of host to have when dealing with the iconic and brilliant, but cagey, Jules Vasquez. Always brash and iconoclastic, Jules had no problem saying he thought the BNTU strike was a flawed experiment that failed. He feels that the problem with the system is “structural” and cannot be fixed with micro interventions like the teacher’s strike. It’s not so much the rightness of their cause but the impracticality of their strategic plan and the negative impact it is now having on the children and parents who are already enslaved in a “soft-prison system” which the schools have become; turning out mediocre products who eventually become a part of the same masses the system exploits. This is the nature of a capitalist system that we have in Belize, according to Jules, and both the PUP and UDP benefits from keeping the system going.

    International Association of Chief of Police Conference
    The U.S. Embassy sent a team of Belize Police Officers led by the Commissioner of Police Mr. Allen Whylie to attend an International Association of Chief of Police Conference in San Diego, California. U.S. Embassy staff from International Narcotics and Law Enforcement section, Faustino Shal accompanied the team of officers.

    The Reporter

    Policeman savagely beaten in Camalote Village, Cayo
    A policeman is in a critical condition after he was beaten Sunday night in Camalote Village, Cayo. The incident happened while the officer, still unidentified, was at a bar in the village. Reports are that of troublemakers in the village attacked the policeman and beat him badly.

    Fatal traffic accident claims one life
    Sketchy reports are that a road traffic accident in Punta Gorda has claimed one life. The accident happened near Kings Service Station, located half a mile from the Southern Highway, and the victim was on a bicycle when the vehicle struck him.

    Local sheep and goat industry receives more assistance from Taiwan
    The Genetic Improvement in Sheep and Goat Project, initiated by the Republic of China (Taiwan) has received the second disbursement from the budget. Late last week, Taiwanese Ambassador Benjamin Ho presented a cheque to José Alpuche, chief executive officer in the Ministry of Agriculture. The “Genetic Improvement for Sheep and Goat Breeding Belize-Taiwan Project” agreement was signed on December 2, 2015. It is a three-year project with an approved total budget of approximately US $1.62 million, of which both governments contribute towards. The project has made some achievements for the past three quarters, including dispatching two local technicians to receive training on sheep production and reproduction, expanding and improving the infrastructure, expanding the paddock and forage field, improving the human resources at the National Sheep and Goat Breeding Center in Central Farm of Belize. The said second disbursement of funds will be mainly used in upgrading sheep barns construction and the importation of quality breeding sheep. Training with interested people will be held in the coming years after the completion of sheep barn construction and sheep importation in the end of the year.

    Climate change leading to major changes in agricultural production in Latin America and the Caribbean
    Agricultural production in Latin America and the Caribbean is being affected by climate change, and if adjustments and adaptation measures are not urgently introduced, threats to food security will likely become a problem. Experts suggest that large companies can afford to buy other land, but in some countries, many family farmers find their livelihood at risk and wonder if the time has come to change crops or to leave their land and move to a city, in order to survive. “Climate change puts us in a situation of insecurity. If in the past we were able to more or less estimate average temperatures or humidity for a particular area, now we have lost the capacity to make forecasts based on a certain degree of probability,” Jorge Meza, an Ecuadorian expert in the United Nations Food and Agriculture Organisation (FAO) regional office, commented this week. “It has been estimated that by 2030 the impacts from climate change on the regional economy could reach an average of 2.2 per cent of GDP in damage,” Meza added.

    NGO concerned about government’s decision to allow company to conduct seismic testing in offshore waters without EIA
    The Belize Coalition to Save our Natural Heritage has expressed concern about the government’s decision to allow a Houston-based company to conduct seismic testing in Belize’s offshore waters and adjacent to the protected areas that make up our Barrier Reef System World Heritage Site, and all without the benefit of an Environmental Impact Assessment (EIA). The Coalition says it appears that the Geology and Petroleum Department began to discuss a proposal to conduct seismic activity in Belize’s offshore areas with TGS, a multi-client company three years ago. It continues: “Up to this point, the Belizean public has not had the benefit of being properly consulted or informed of this undertaking. Neither has there been any information made available to the public as to the basis on which the Department of Environment advised the Cabinet that an Environmental Impact Assessment (EIA) was unnecessary. The participating company intends to sell the results of their testing to anyone with the money to pay.

    Breaking Belize NewsPJ

    Fatal Road traffic accident in PG
    Reports reaching our newsroom is that a person who was riding a bicycle was knocked down and killed near Kings Service station in Punta Gorda. Police are investigating. BBN will have more details as information becomes available. © 2016, www.breakingbelizenews.com. This article is the […]

    Belize COMPOL attends Chief of Police Conference in the U.S.
    A team of police officers led by Commissioner of Police Allen Whylie departed the country today to attend an International Association of Chief of Police (IACP) conference in San Diego, California, U.S. courtesy of the United States embassy. Faustino Shal, embassy staff member from […]

    BNTU Belize District branch launches fundraising activity
    Efforts are underway to offer financial support to teachers who have been striking for 9 days in defense of their good governance agenda and have lost thousands of dollars in income as a result. According to reports, the BNTU Belize District branch is doing […]

    Man detained for setting DPM vehicle on fire to be charged on Monday
    A Belize city resident has been detained for setting the Deputy Prime Minister, Patrick Faber’s vehicle on fire. Reports are that the man has been positively identified based on the images from the surveillance video. However, Ladyville police are still gathering details for the […]

    Road traffic accident on the Philip Goldson Highway; Vehicle flips
    This morning, a black dodge pickup was seen upside down near AQ Auto Rentals on the Philip Goldson Highway. According to reports, the vehicle flipped sometime around 8 o’clock on Saturday night. The driver and possible passengers in the vehicle at the time of […]

    ACES rescue crocodiles on the Caye
    In the month of October, the Ambergris Crocodile Education Sanctuary (ACES) rescued and relocated three adult crocodiles from populated areas. It is not a common thing to see an American crocodile on the Caye, however, residents in the areas of San Pablo, San Mateo […]

    Interpol looking for Sonora ex-governor; Fugitive could be in Belize
    Belizean authorities are currently on the lookout for a former Mexican politician who is wanted for money laundering and tax evasion in Mexico. The International Criminal Police Organization (Interpol), issued a notice on October 3 describing Guillermo Padrés Elias, 47, as a wanted fugitive. Elias, […]

    Two men were shot on the south side of Belize City hours apart
    Gun shots rained on the south side of Belize City on Saturday night as two men survived two separate attempts on their lives. At around 10:30 p.m., Anthony Crawford, 33, was shot once into the right leg, once into the right ankle and was […]

    Belize City woman has bizarre tumor on abdomen
    Those that may not know Caroline Copius, 47, may from her appearance assume that she is days away from delivering a child. However, that could not be further from the truth for Copius, now known as the tumor lady because of the tumor-like swelling […]

    Blogs

    5am Wake Up for An Urban Birdwatch with The Belize Audobon
    This morning my phone alarm rang in the darkness. NO… If I was going to get up for San Pedro’s Urban Birdwatch and Bird Count, it was going to have to happen quickly. And I’m glad I did because OH WHAT A PRETTY MORNING. Birds or no birds. We’ve had some beautiful days this week…dark, rich, heavy clouds, rain and sun. This morning was more of the same. And we DID see birds. The lowlight…the rock pigeon in the park. The highlight…a peregrine falcon chasing a group (flock?) of blue winged teals.

    Belize is a Birder's Paradise
    An advanced Birding Course organized by the National Audubon Society in collaboration with the Inter-American Development Bank (IDB) saw the participation of 21 birding trainees from across Belize endure five weeks of rigorous training. Among those that took the course is Caves Branch’s very own Esperansa Gaitan, who was one of two females that will be fully certified and recognized by the Belize Tourism Board as an expert Bird Guide. Gaitan expressed her excitement to the BAS- Sponsors and the facilitators of this course. Her interest in the skills and training earned in this course are being applied in her bird watching tours at Caves Branch Jungle Lodge. The 5 weeks of intense learning, sharing knowledge and experiences, promises to take bird guiding to the next level. Facilitators and participants agree that birders from abroad can now come to Belize and enjoy not only the birds, but knowledgeable & capable guides with a legitimate passion for conservation and vast knowledge of the uniquely diverse bird population of Belize. Facilitators for this course were Roni Martinez and Phillip Balderamos and the advanced course was made possible through the Multi-Lateral Investment Fund (FOMIN) of the Inter-American Development Bank.

    International Sourcesizz

    SeaBird Exploration: 2D Long Offset in Belize
    SeaBird Exploration, a provider of seismic data to the oil and gas industry, will acquire a long-offset survey offshore Belize. "We are pleased to announce that the company will acquire a long-offset survey in Belize, starting mid-October 2016," says a statement from the company. SeaBird will use the Northern Explorer to acquire the survey and the anticipated duration of the program is three to four weeks. SeaBird is a global provider of marine acquisition for 2D/3D and 4D seismic data, and associated products and services to the oil and gas industry. SeaBird specialises in high quality operations within the high end of the source vessel and 2D market, as well as in the shallow/deep water 2D/3D and 4D market. Main focus for the company is proprietary seismic surveys (contract seismic).

    Becoming Fortis Inc.
    Fortis Inc. is the largest investor-owned gas and electric distribution utility company in Canada and now among the top 15 in North America. It boasts 43 consecutive years of increased dividends to shareholders, with promises of more to come. But how did Fortis get to be Fortis? The corporation claims a history dating back to 1885, but the first 100 years is really the story of Newfoundland Power (the local subsidiary carries about four per cent of Fortis assets today). The merger of the Newfoundland Light and Power Company LTD, Union Electric and United Towns Electric in 1966 brought Newfoundland Power closer to what it is today. The joint company served just under 89,000 customers, growing to today's 260,000. As for Fortis, it was born under the engineer, turned university dean, turned private consultant Angus Bruneau, who also became the president and CEO of Newfoundland Light and Power Co. (now Newfoundland Power).

    Spooky spots around the globe that people used to believe were gates to the underworld
    From countless religions to cult shows like Buffy the Vampire Slayer, the idea of reaching hell through a portal on Earth has been around for thousands of years. Almost every faith features the concept of an underworld, where the souls of sinners are banished. Some believe that the afterlife is a spiritual place reached after death – but others have thought that hell can be reached more directly through an entrance on Earth. Atlas Obscura collected a series of these purported gates to hell – and some of their locations are somewhat surprising. ACTUN TUNICHIL MUKNAL CAVE IN TAPIR MOUNTAIN NATURE RESERVE, BELIZE: Mayans believed the cave was an entrance to Xibalba, their underworld. The skeleton of an 18-year-old girl has been dubbed the 'Crystal Maiden' and she was believed to have been murdered more than 1,000 years ago as a sacrifice to the Death Gods.

    'Vulnerable Small States Need Global Support'
    HURRICANE SEASONS have always been a stark reality of Caribbean life. Many of the natural disasters in the region have made history, personalised by names such as David, Hugo, Felix and Erica. But there is nothing humane about these storms. Nature’s fury is not restrained by considerations for people, property or economic stability. This month we met Monstrous Matthew, which has claimed hundreds of lives and caused widespread destruction. As I travelled to Washington to meet with finance ministers from across the Commonwealth, the increasing frequency and intensity of these storms weighed heavily on my mind. Last year I saw first-hand the terrible cost to lives and the devastation to infrastructure that Dominica experienced when Hurricane Erica wiped out 90 per cent of the country’s GDP - equivalent to US$483 million. In minutes the storm demolished decades of progress. In many cases the blow from climatic events to already fragile Commonwealth economies is more than countries can bear. The sad truth is that these storms are linked to manmade climate change, and those suffering most are those who are least responsible for the actions that caused it.

    The Coca-Cola addiction of Mexico’s indigenous population
    Guadalupe Sánchez has the cracked hands of a corn grower and the clean blood of a former Coca-Cola addict. “I used to drink three one-liter bottles a day. As soon as I woke up in the morning, I would have the first glass with my tortillas, and I would continue throughout the afternoon and evening,” he says, while a rafter of turkeys peck at the ground outside his front door. Sánchez built this house with his own hands for himself, his wife, their eight children and seven grandchildren. The walls are made of grey cement and the roof is unfinished. In the indigenous community of the Mazahuas in San José del Rincón, a wooded village in western Mexico state, there are homes without running water but with a bottle of soda sitting permanently on the dinner table. A group of nutrition students at Tec University in Monterrey, one of Mexico’s most expensive and prestigious higher education centers, visited this community during the entire month of September.

    Videos

  • Love is in the air at Wahoo's Lounge Belize, 1.5min. Anything can happen @ Wahoo's. Congratulations to the newly engaged couple. Love on the Chicken Drop board ...

  • Underwater Belize Cayes, 4min. Snorkeling with a nurse shark off the coast of Placencia, Belize.

  • Scott Scuba Belize Dive 1, 37min. Jason Key Reef Belize.

  • Y2Y - Belize, 4min. Y2Y on the way, after Mexico, Belize :-D.

  • Miss Universe 2016 - Contestants (Belize and Curaçao), 6min. Miss Universe 2016, will be the 65th Miss Universe pageant, Pia Wurtzbach from the Philippines will crown her successor at the end of the event.

  • Belize Diving Blue Hole 2016, 2.5min. Beautiful diving in Belize.

  • Corozal Xaibe Maya dancers,Belize, 2.5min. Yucatec Mayas of the village of Xaibe dancing the U Pool K'ek'en (la Cabeza del Cochino).Dancers are done Juan Tzul and his sister Nubia Tzul.

  • Belize Maya Expo: Yucatec Mayas dancing La Cinta, .5min. Mayas of Northern Belize(Yucatec Mayas) from Orange Walk dancing la cinta.

  • Belize Progressive Party First Public Consultation Meeting - October 15 2016, 9min. Your Belize Progressive Party - BPP held its very first public consultation meeting on October 15, 2016. Charles Leslie Jr, the BPP Political Leader for Belmopan (the capital city of Belize) introduced his message to the residents of the City of Promise.

  • Maya Ruins of Xunantunich, Belize 2010 - with Golden, 36min. We were lucky enough to tour the huge Maya ruin of Xunantunich in western Belize during December of 2010. Our Tour Guide was Golden and as you can see from this video, we learned and observed a lot about the Maya Civilization.

    October 16, 2016


    FOR TODAY'S BELIZE WEATHER, CLICK HERE

    Click for our Daily Tropical Weather Report.

    Specials and Events

    Last night's TV news on Channel 7, Channel 5, LOVETV, PGTV, West Vision (Cayo) and CTV 3. Also with the most recent Open Your Eyes, Rise and Shine Morning Show, and the Dickie Bradley Specials


    The San Pedro Sun

    San Pedro Fishing Association president calls for unity among fishers
    Efforts to revive a dormant fishing association in San Pedro Town have been fruitless over the past years. The defunct association saw its opportunity to start once again when new members were elected during a meeting held in mid- February of this year. Enrique Marin was elected president, along with six other members tasked in solving the main issues affecting the local fishing industry. However, despite pumping young and active members into the association, poor support and commitment from members has the organization stagnant once again. At the time of his appointment, Marin pledged to address the many difficulties affecting island fishers, which included the reinforcement of fisheries regulations, illegal fishing and even the proper issuing of fishing licenses. Upon listening to the award winning radio drama Punta Fuego, which airs on the local radio station, Love FM on Wednesday evenings, Marin says he encouraged some of his fellow fishing folks to follow it since it provides useful and up-to-date information regarding Belize’s fisheries industry. At Punta Fuego, a fictional fishing village somewhere along the coast of Belize, the fishing industry is everyone’s way of life, but it is threatened by illegal and unsustainable fishing activities by dishonest fishermen and even corrupt fisheries officials. But despite all these threats affecting the industry, there are people who care about sustainable fishing and are trying their best to salvage the industry. Such characters like Richie Valencia encourage fishers to attend and participate in fisheries related meetings, and to respect the fisheries regulations while explaining the long term benefits associated with responsible fishing.

    Ambergris Caye is ready for Canada’s WestJet
    Ambergris Caye is getting ready to welcome the arrival of a new airline to Belize. The popular Canadian air carrier, WestJet will start offering twice-weekly non-stop flights between Toronto’s Pearson Airport (YYZ) and Belize’s Philip S.W Goldson International (BZE) beginning Saturday, October 29th. All those lay overs in the continental United States will finally come to an end, thus making Belize even more accessible to Canadians who are looking forward to escaping from the pending winter weather. WestJet joins Southwest and Copa Airlines, who began flying to Belize a year ago. Ambergris Caye, which is considered the top destination for visitors in Belize, has been counting the days for the service to start. A few businesses in San Pedro Town stated that they are ready to welcome the new visitors and make sure their stay on La Isla Bonita is the best. A few restaurants downtown, such as Caliente, commented that they are excited and their staff is ready to provide the excellent service they are known for. Estel’s Dine by the Sea acknowledges that with more tourism on the island, residents will have access to more jobs, as the demand for additional services increases. Both establishments on the beach offered some of the best food in local and international cuisine, and are ready to serve. Hotels such as Spindrift, Sun Breeze, Ramon’s Village, Caribbean Villas and Xanadu all expressed their satisfaction on WestJet’s entry into the popular North-American-Belize market. They all shared one common sentiment. “We are prepared to pamper the new arrivals from Canada with the best hospitality the island has to offer.”

    The importance of declaration of assets and liabilities in politics
    An ever-growing number of countries have adopted ethics and anti-corruption laws that require public officials to declare their assets and income before or after taking government positions. In Belize according to the 1994 Prevention of Corruption in Public Life Act, certain government officials must file financial declarations with the Integrity Commission established in that same year. However, such body has been defunct since 2011. The principal goal of income and asset disclosure systems is to combat corruption, and even though the system has not been functioning in the country for the past six years, a major development took place during the fifth anniversary of National Service Day on September, 19th in Belmopan (commemorating the passing of the party’s paramount leader, George Cadle Price). While members of the Opposition People’s United Party (PUP) want to pump life into the Commission, local politicians on the island have different views about this practice.

    Misc Belizean Sourcesmzz

    Poets Corner: Participate
    By Abdulmajeed K Nunez. Every ten years the national debt doubles 1998, 2008 under PUPD Belize deh eena financial trouble Now in 2016 it seem to triple Unu still want meet with Barrow when Belize is on the verge of becoming bankrupt my people? Check the history I noh di babble The country eena trouble We deh on the heels of 1949 This borrowing is beneiging Time to think of ten member cabinet With fifty elected senators in oversight committee as safety net Each district, two senator they can get The tri state area can be fly een deh rep For quarterly meetings the senate select It’s time to go Republic Belize nuff respect PUDP is facilitating the raping of our assets showing no respect The Chamber should be preparing a minister to serve the nation So too must all the unions

    Honoring Our Elders
    BEL's Golden Citizens Program honors our elders for their contributions to society.

    Have you heard of the Pink Panther?
    We have them too in the Chiquibul Forest!!! Photo by Lauren Watine.

    The Reporter

    Happening now: Taiwanese food festival
    The Taiwanese Embassy is today holding its food festival at the Fort George Memorial Park in Belize City. The event features some of the finest Taiwanese dishes and drinks. Hundreds of Belizean and Taiwanese families have turned up to support the event.

    Breaking Belize NewsPJ

    Man murdered in San Pedro Town; Shot multiple times
    Reports are that Robinson was shot multiple times while walking home on Barrier Reef drive around 5:20 a.m. today. He was reportedly socializing at a night club in San Pedro Town prior to the shooting. His body has been transported to the KHMH for a post mortem examination and police are currently investigating the murder.

    Audacity and Absurdity – PUP wants PM Barrow to Resign over BTL?
    By Delroy Cuthkelvin: That PUP politicians, of all people, would be calling for the resignation of our Prime Minister over the settlement of the BTL nationalization and compensation award is, to say the least, preposterous. Preposterous, we say, because were it not for the PUP, there would be no need for any such nationalization, compensation or settlement. One of the most profitable companies in our country’s post-independence history, BTL was created in 1987-1988 by the first UDP Administration through the merger of Cable &Wireless and Belize Telecommunication Authority (BTA). The company’s original Articles of Association prohibited any individual or entity from owning more than 25 percent of BTL’s shares, except for the Government or some “permitted person” acting on its behalf.

    Blogs

    Belizean Breezes moves to new, bigger space
    Step into Belizean Breezes’ new, fabulous location and enter a zone of calm and delight. Now located in their new business space on Pescador Drive, the store is home to a massive amount of delicious-smelling soaps, scrubs, body butters and even home accessories and fun gift items. Exhausted but excited, owner and operator Lynda Perdue is thrilled to have a bigger space to truly double her inventory and best serve the increasing demand for her fabulous products. “We also provide to gift shops in resorts all over Belize, and even their guest soaps, so I’m very happy to have doubled my space so I can create more,” she said. Belizean Breezes now offers sunscreen, foot bombs, bubble butters, bath fizzies, bath bubbles in bags, massage oils, traditional sugar scrubs (aside from the whipped sugar scrubs) and even organic shampoos and conditioners (Beach Guy and Beach Girl)!

    Videos

  • Belize Favorite Dives Sites, 4min. In this video, I scuba dived 3 sites Coco Beach House Reef, Love Tunnel and Tackle Box. Out of the 3, Tackle Box and Love Tunnels are my favorite dives. I loved the swim thru’s. Coco Beach House Reef was cool. I had a lot shark interaction there, which was a lot of fun. During the week, the surge was abnormal and it was difficult to shoot steady footage. I did the best I could under the conditions.

  • Kiteboarding Belize GoPro, 1/2min.

  • Blue hole cave in Belize, 2min.

    October 15, 2016


    FOR TODAY'S BELIZE WEATHER, CLICK HERE

    Click for our Daily Tropical Weather Report.

    Specials and Events

    Last night's TV news on Channel 7, Channel 5, LOVETV, PGTV, West Vision (Cayo) and CTV 3. Also with the most recent Open Your Eyes, Rise and Shine Morning Show, and the Dickie Bradley Specials


    The San Pedro Sun

    Fishermen seek help after Hurricane Earl
    The long recovery following Hurricane Earl is just beginning for fishermen across Belize. Earl’s impact resulted in soaring losses for fishermen, especially those of Caye Caulker Village. As one of the largest sources of income for the country, fishermen feel that the Government of Belize (GOB) should offer them financial assistance, which up to date, they have not received. According to local fishermen from both Caye Caulker and San Pedro, fishing grounds for lobster, fish and conch were severely damaged by the forces of the storm. In addition, Caye Caulker fishermen in particularly suffered excessive losses in fishing equipment. “Fishermen in Caye Caulker are feeling the strain from the hurricane’s impact. We are talking about maybe half a million dollars in damages to lobster traps. Some fishermen had 500 traps, some had 400 traps and the smallest fishermen had about 100 traps, valued at about $75 each trap, but they lost it all in the storm,” explained Portilio Guzman on the extent of the loss of equipment in Caye Caulker.

    San Pedro United wins 3rd place in under-17 football playoffs
    San Pedro United won the consolation game for 3rd place: 2-1 over the Brown Bombers when the Belize District Football Association (BDFA) hosted the McLean Insurance Brokers Under-17 football playoffs at the M.C.C. garden in Belize City on Monday, October 10. Ian Pou and Dixon Paguada led the Sanpedranos’ attacks supported by Arnold Flowers and Kyle Jacobs on the wings, and Hugo “Juice” Pineda and Christian Medina at midfield. Paguada’s first shot was deflected by the Bombers’ goalkeeper, but Christian Medina pounced on the rebound and the keeper hadn’t a prayer of stopping Medina’s instant volley into the net: 1-0. San Pedro United was eliminated from the finals by a 7-8 loss to Hattieville Riverside Boys in sudden death penalties in Game 3 in the semi-finals. Regulation time had ended in a 1-1 draw after Hattiville’s Jadon “Cheetes” Macgregor converted a penalty early in the first half, and Arnold Flowers equalized -1 for San Pedro.

    BNTU meets with Prime Minister
    The Belize National Teachers Union (BNTU) industrial action is nearing two weeks since it began early this month. The nationwide strike by teachers demanding good governance, transparency and an adjustment in their salaries from the Government of Belize (GOB), has left thousands of students without classes in their first term. It seemed that a solution to the issues seemed far from happening, but GOB and the BNTU finally agreed to sit again and discuss how this matter will be put to rest. After a Cabinet meeting on Tuesday, October 11th, Prime Minister Right Honourable Dean Barrow sent out a letter to BNTU’s President Luke Palacio scheduling a meeting with the Union for Thursday, October 13th at the Biltmore Plaza Hotel in Belize City. In the official note from the Office of the Prime Minister he stated that another body which he links to the teachers Union, the NTUCB, was in the process of scheduling their meeting with the Prime Minister. Barrow urged the BNTU to be part of that meeting. “Whatever understanding the Government and BNTU might reach in an earlier meeting would thus have to be canvassed again at the later meeting with the (National Trade Union Congress of Belize) NTUCB to further address the issues raised,” emphasized the letter.

    Breast Cancer Awareness Walk/Run 2016
    October is dedicated to Breast Cancer Awareness, and the San Pedro Town Council (SPTC) has organized a “Breast Cancer Awareness Walk/Run” on Sunday, October 30th. For a registration fee of $10, you can join and help spread awareness, while also raising funds for the San Pedro Cancer Society (SPCS). Participants will gather at the Boca del Rio Park, then follow the route from the Sir Barry Bowen Bridge, proceeding to Belizean Shores, and returning to the bridge. This year, the SPTC is offering a ‘Pink Package’, which includes a breast cancer awareness water bottle, t-shirt, a cap, and registration, for $50. Since there is a limited amount available, the deadline to sign-up for a package is Friday, October 21st. Participants are encouraged to wear pink if a package is not purchased.

    Problematic crocodiles continue to keep ACES busy
    Crocodilians are one of the longest surviving creatures on the planet, and encountering an American Crocodile on Ambergris Caye is definitely not an unusual occurrence. Residents living near mangrove waterways in areas such as San Pablo, San Mateo, and DFC frequently report sightings of these reptiles. In October alone, Ambergris Crocodile Education Sanctuary (ACES) has rescued and relocated three adults and one sub-adult from populated areas. For Chris Summers of ACES, wrangling crocodiles, especially when it’s been raining, is just part of his regular routine. “Since the rainy season is currently in effect, there are generally more sightings of crocodiles due to the rising waters. Even young crocodiles tend to travel to populated areas by moving through flooded areas. Once I rescue a croc, my job is to examine the wild animal, take measurements, data and then relocate it to a less populated area of the island,” said Summers. According to Summers, crocodiles should not be judged as vicious predators, as they play an important role in the ecosystem. “As an apex predator, they control the environment around them because of what they eat. Just like the wolves in Yellowstone Park, and bears in Colorado. Here, crocs help to control the fish population by eating fish and rodents. They stop the population from over-breeding, which is a good thing. Another of their favorite foods is raccoons. A healthy croc population, means a healthy and balanced raccoon population by stopping them from becoming too many,” said Summers.

    Ambergris Today

    Teachers Hold Prayer Vigil as Strike Goes on 9th Day
    On Thursday evening, October 13, 2016, at the R. Angel Nunez Auditorium, teachers of San Pedro held a prayer vigil to invoke God's blessings on the nation of Belize. They also prayed for guidance for the Government and the National Teachers' Union (BNTU) to reach terms of agreement that would be amicable to both parties. Once again teachers expressed their solidarity with their union and repeated their willingness and eagerness to go back to the classroom once Prime Minister Dean Barrow agrees to honor the main points on good governance that the teachers are asking for. It was also yesterday that PM Barrow agreed to meet with the Belize National Teachers Union with hopes to come our with an agreement and an end to the strike. In the end, The BNTU was not satisfied with the outcome of the meeting and decided to finish off the week with strike action; making it the 9th day that public schools remain closed.

    Misc Belizean Sourcesmzz

    Two 10 minute power interruptions 6:00am to 6:10am & 5:50pm to 6:00pm, Sunday, October 16: entire Orange Walk & Corozal Districts
    BEL to replace poles on the transmission system between the Maskall & Buena Vista Substations.

    Emergency power interruption 7:00am to 10:00am, Saturday, October 15: entire Orange Walk District
    BEL to urgently replace transmission poles in the area.

    Institute of Archaeology (NICH) Belize at International Archaeology Day!
    Come learn about our Cultural Celebrations!

    OCEANA SAYS ‘NO’ TO SEISMIC AIRGUN SURVEY IN BELIZE’S OFFSHORE AREA
    Despite GoB’s declared moratorium, Cabinet Approves Seismic Airgun Testing without an EIA. On Wednesday October 12, 2016, Oceana was advised by the Prime Minister, Rt. Hon. Dean Barrow, and the Minister of Petroleum, Hon. Erwin Contreras, that at Tuesday’s meeting, the Cabinet approved the seismic survey of Belize’s offshore area based on the Department of the Environment’s advice that seismic activity does not require an Environmental Impact Assessment (EIA). Oceana has formally requested an official copy of the Department of Environment’s written position provided to Cabinet, in addition to any materials related thereto, on the basis that the Department’s premise is not supported by the best available science. On the contrary, the magnitude of the proposed seismic activity is likely to have significant, long-lasting, and widespread environmental and economic impacts for Belize. Seismic testing, the first step in oil and gas development, is an extremely loud and dangerous process used to search for oil and gas deposits deep below the ocean floor. The impact on marine mammals from such testing is significant. It disrupts mating and feeding habits, causes abandonment of habitat and temporary and permanent hearing loss, among other issues. It also adversely impacts the fishing and tourist industries.

    Cocktails For The Manatees FUndraiser
    Today's fundraiser to protect our manatees. With Manatee Man Jamal Galves. On Open Your Eyes, 20 minute video. Our efforts include outreach and education on the importance of these gentle giants to the ecosystem and our economy of Belize, workshops with tour guides to minimize the impact of curious visitors, increased no-wake signage and our ongoing efforts to rescue and rehabilitate injured manatees. Of course this work relies on the generosity of sponsors. So for the second year in a row we’ll be hosting “Cocktails with the Manatees,” an evening of pleasant socialization around this important cause. It will be held on Saturday October 15th, 2016, from 7:00pm to midnight at the Hour Bar Field on Princess Margaret Drive. Admission fee is $30, entertained by the GillHarry Band, drinks and light food will be on sale along with raffles and live action to raise funds to protect our manatees.Come and join us. Saturday, October 15 at 8 PM - 11 PM, Hour Bar Belize 1 Princess Margaret Drive, Belize City

    Health and Wellness Seminar by CG Esthetic
    Sign up for Health and Wellness Seminar by CG Esthetic in San Pedro, Ambergris Caye - Carole Goudreau

    CC Tourism Destination Plan 2016-2020
    28 Photos

    EXPOFER Chetumal
    Our Gilharry 7 Band from Corozal is scheduled to perform at this year's Expofer. Mexico's southern regional fair, the EXPOFER Chetumal, opened its doors to the public today October 14th. This Mexican southern regional fair attracts hundreds of Belizeans every year, as they flock inside the fair grounds to enjoy the various live bands, entertainers, dances, performances and also to indulge in a lot of Mexican cuisine, treats and other goodies. Children are attracted to the different mechanical rides and games. Various wrestling matches will be held on Sunday, October 16th at 8:00 p.m. at the fair grounds. Adults $50 pesos and Children $10 pesos. Aleks Syntek will perform on Saturday, October 22nd. FREE ADMISSION! Gilharry 7 Band from Corozal will perform Saturday, October 29th. FREE ADMISSION! Caaveral will be performing on Wednesday, November 2nd. We noted this year, that the entire fair grounds was paved inside. The concert stage is also covered with a tent in case it rains. Be safe. Do enjoy and have lots of fun.

    Noche de Cuenta Cuentos 2016
    The Benque House of Culture is having their 5th annual Noche de Cuenta Cuentos on Friday, October 28th. "Save the DATE: October 28th, 2016. Noche de Cuenta Cuentos: Folklore supernatural stories by our community members and guests."

    Expo Feria 2016
    Jorge Nazim Requena (Hospitality Officer, Belize Tourism Board) and other Tourism partners promoting Belize at this years' Expo Feria 2016 in Merida, Mexico.

    Belize City Primary School History and Social Studies Calypso Belize City Tour
    Today, the Belize City House of Culture and Downtown Rejuvenation Project conducted its Belize City Primary School History and Social Studies Calypso Belize City Tour. The tour was organized mainly for the contestants of the upcoming competition to be held on November 3rd and 10th. The tour was one of the activities to create excitement among the contestants and to immerse them in our History and Culture. The tour started from the House of Culture and included a visit to the Museum of Belize and ended with lunch at the House of Culture. Everyone had a great time. Here are a few pictures from today’s event.

    Channel 7

    Teachers' Strike continues Until (At Least) Wednesday
    Last night, we told you about meeting between the Prime Minister and the leadership of the Belize National Teachers Union that went late into the evening. It was their first dialog after 8 days of strike. Even though the Prime Minister made public commitments to concede to a number of their good governance demands, the teachers continued their strike today because many of the Prime Minister's fixes involved lengthy timelines, instead of immediate changes. The teachers first intended to strike until on next Monday when they would have held a national demonstration. That would have made it 10 consecutive school days of no classes, but the news is tonight that it has been extended to Wednesday, day 12. The teachers are blaming the Prime Minister for the additional 2 days of strike because, according to them, at the very last minute, he postponed a follow up meeting. That conversation would have been between the BNTU, and the other 2 unions which make up the Joint Union's Negotiating Team. They would have been discussing the deferral of the 3% salary adjustment. This afternoon, the leadership of the BNTU called an impromptu press briefing to explain to parents why the extension of the strike is not their fault. Here's what they had to say:

    What Are Parents Doing About Strike?
    And so now parents across Belize are in for at least three more days of the teachers' strike. But Are they really in support of the BNTU movement ? Or are they just getting frustrated with this prolonged strike? We spoke to a few parents today and all they want is for some resolution to be finalized so their kids can go back to school: Agnes Mariano - Mother: "My thoughts on the strike is that, um, I know to fight for something- to get something we have to fight for it. But, for the children cut out of school is kinda way you know, I'm going to work, I have to work nightshift, I got to work day shift. Everywhere I go now I have to take her with me because- but, that's what we have to do cause it's a strike and we have to be behind the teachers. For me, I did something different. I take her to tutor three times for this week so she could, like, keep up with some work and I try to help her with some school work while I am at home. I want her back in school but I would really like the Prime Minister to work along with the teachers and just let us end the strike."

    UDP Reps. Implore Teachers to Return To School
    And today, two UDP representatives are pleading with teachers to go back to the classroom, and with parents to send their children back to school. Michael Finnegan and Tracy Taegar-Panton – who we met two weeks ago trying to tell teachers in their constituency not to strike – held a press conference today, encouraging teachers individually to abandon the strike and return to their classrooms. They said the government has done its part, and now it's time for the teachers to do theirs:… Hon. Tracy Taegar-Panton - Albert Representative: "There is no reason for this to continue. They have received, they have gotten the assurance and commitment at specific time frame, specific date that the government has provided in which this governance agenda will be advanced." "The government of Belize has listened, the government of Belize compromised; the government of Belize has acceded to several of the concerns that were raised by the BNTU in terms of the 8 point agenda, almost all of them. And so I was hopeful that would signal an end to the strike. There is a measure disappointment that I feel that today the children of the Albert constituency continue to be out of school. It has been a long time, it has been 10 days; the children also have a right to an education. I think there are several ways in which we can advance any negotiation but my appeal to the teachers and my appeal to the parents is that it's time for our children to be back in school."

    PUP Calls For PM's Resignation Over BTL Compensation
    And with all this agitation already ongoing, the PUP threw one more log on the fire this afternoon. The party held its own hastily called press conference to demand Prime Minister Barrow's resignation. Now, the opposition calls for this at least once every quarter, so that's not really news, but this time they did give us some news. According to the PUP, today the Government of Belize paid the Ashcroft Alliance 67.5 million US dollars – part settlement for the BRTL acquisition. PUP Deputy Leader Kareem Musa told the press two hours ago that this had substantially weakened Belize's foreign reserves:… Hon. Kareem Musa - Caribbean Shores Representative: "Today is the day that the Government of Belize has paid to the Ashcroft group USD 67.5 Million. This sum of money has been drawn down from our foreign reserves which now stand at very dangerously low levels. I think you could recall some months ago that the Governor of the Central Bank, Mr. Ysaguirre, had issued a letter warning about the dangerously low levels."

    Busitos "Bex" With Castro
    Minibuses, or as they are more commonly called, "busitos," have become an institution among Belizeans living in the villages and towns along the George Price Highway. The service, which originally began to pick up the passengers that the larger buses could not during peak periods, has become a popular mode of transportation. So popular, that the service is now beginning to compete with the larger bus companies. For the last couple of years, the "busitos" were able to operate from six in the morning to six at night, but recently the Ministry of Transport has made a change that has left the operators concerned. We spoke to members of the Western Minibus Owners Cooperative Society Limited about what has them so worried… Giovanni Mejia – Vice President, Western Minibus Owners Cooperative Society Limited: "My concern is that we had a letter issued from the Department of Transport yesterday, stating to us that they going to cut our runs from 6 in the morning to 9 am in the morning, and from 3 to 6pm in the evening. Probably, they cutting us six hours for the day. And the Belmopan cooperative is very concerned about this situation that is happening to us, right? And the reason we are here, we are very concerned and the whole group is very concerned about it and even the commuters out there in the surrounding village..."

    No Charges For Alleged Fire Starter
    Ladyville police have not charged the man detained for setting Deputy Prime Minister Patrick Faber’s vehicle on fire. Though the Belize City resident has been positively identified based on the images form the security camera – police say they are still gathering elements form the investigation. They now expect to charge him on Monday. He has told police that someone set him on to do it. On Tuesday at midnight, a lone figure was seen dousing an SUV in Faber’s driveway at his Lord’s Bank home. The man put one bottle of gas, and then came back minute slater with a 5 gallon container and continued dousing. He then set the vehicle on fire right next to Faber’s home. The blaze was quickly contained by the Ladyville fire department.

    Constables Have Murder Charge Reduced
    Police constables Reydel Teck, Romelio Logan and Jahsimir Cob, were accused of the murder of San Pedro bartender, Edwin Ixpatac – but that charge has been downgraded. In March of this year, Ixpatac was allegedly acting disorderly on the Banyan Bay Pier. It was there that the three officers confronted Ixpatac and beat him. Ixpatac was found injured near the sea wall the next day, and was then taken to prison. Ixpatac’s injuries were not treated until a day later, when he was found unconscious in his prison cell. He was taken to the polyclinic and later transported to the KHMH where he succumbed to his injuries. Teck, Logan and Cob appeared in the Magistrate’s Court today. They were originally charged with the murder of Ixpatac, but on a directive from the DPP, their charge was change to manslaughter. All three were released on $3,000 bail and were ordered to return to court on December 5th for case management.

    The Bottom Line on the Long Meeting
    In last night's newscast, we gave you extended coverage of the Prime Minister's press conference on his second set of counter proposals to the BNTU on their 8 good governance demands. Due to time, we were not able to properly put those comments in context for you, so today, with more time to digest the positions from both sides, we prepared a bullet-point look at the different perspectives on the same 3 and a half hour meeting. Here's what the Prime Minister and the Leader of the Teachers Union had to say: Daniel Ortiz: "Majority of the demands have been a seeded or the government has agreed to move on them. Would you accept that as your position?" Rt. Hon. Dean Barrow - Prime Minister: "Yes I would." Luke Palacio - National President - BNTU: "We believe that the prime minister could have done better." Daniel Ortiz: "So will the strike end tomorrow based on your perception of how the meeting went?" Rt. Hon. Dean Barrow - Prime Minister: "I can't tell you that answer you would have to ask the BNTU. I believe it should end but I can't tell you whether or not it will end."

    Not Just Governance, But Also, Labour Issues
    So, while that's a summary of the perspectives of the two sides of this good governance dispute, what are their positions on the labour dispute? As you will remember, there were a number of labour-related concerns in the BNTU's list of 8 demands to the Prime Minister. We have outlined the good governance fixes, so now tonight, we have the Prime Minister's plan of action responding to the demands that the BNTU had for better working relations. Here are the comments from the Prime Minister, followed by the counterarguments made by the Union's President: Luke Palacio - National President - BNTU: "We had ask for the removal of the minister of police Senator Hulse. At that meeting the prime minister had indicated to us that if indeed as an outcome of the investigation into the auditor general's special report that if a police investigation needed to be done, he would be prepared to revisit that particular demand. Today he had adamantly said that he's not going to remove Senator Hulse as minister of police despite what has happened."

    PM Gives timeline For 13th Senator
    Also, there are few key points, which you may have missed in the Prime Minister's press conference on two of the good governance demands that the BNTU has called for. Our clip form the press conference last night was 12 minutes long, and due to the information overload, you may have missed the Prime Minister's commitment to finally allow the appointment of the 13 Senator. As you will remember, very early into the UDP's first term after 2008, the Barrow Government passed the legislation to appoint a 13 Senator, which was to come from the NGO community. That legislation has been waiting for a commencement order for at least 7 years now because the Prime Minister refused to sign it. He famously quipped, quote, "It ain't gonna happen." Well, under the pressure from the teachers, it will now; the Prime Minister has decided that he will sign the order for that legislation next week Thursday. Thereafter, it will take 3 months for the order to take effect, and in that time, the Prime Minister intends to try to convince the NGO community to appoint someone who will be impartial on all legislation that the Government will seek to pass in the parliament. Here's his first sales pitch to the person who will take up that pivotal office:

    PM Ready For Integrity Commission
    And the Prime Minister will also move with haste to appoint the Integrity Commission. As viewers are aware, the difficulty, according to the Prime Minister, has been that none of the chartered accountants wanted to serve as the Chairman because they become politically exposed persons. Once that happens, the chairman and their entire family will be subjected to invasive background checks. Without that chairman, the commission cannot be properly constituted. Estrella Chan, who works at the Commission told us earlier this week that this very important office, which acts a check and balance to corruption in public life, has been inactive for 6 years now, since the late Bernard Q Pitts, left the chairmanship in 2010. Well, last night after negotiating with the teachers, the Prime Minister has committed to reactivating it as early as next month. He explained in detail why his Government requires that much time to do so:

    Is PM Placating Chamber?
    And viewers will remember, the Integrity Commission and the 13th Senator are two of three demands that the Belize Chamber of Commerce and Industry share with the Teachers. They say that if the Government does not institute them by a certain deadline, they will commence with a 1-day business shutdown, and other actions will follow as needed. Up until early this week, the Prime Minister wasn't prepared to budge on these issues until last night, less than 12 hours after the business community passed those resolutions to pressure the Government. So did the Prime Minister reverse to appease the business community? That's what the press asked him yesterday, and here's how he responded: Reporter: "Is this your way of appeasing the business sector and preventing a national shut down?" Rt. Hon. Dean Barrow - Prime Minister: "Not at all sir, not at all sir; the BCCI have given some deadlines which we are not going to meet. I gave you my own timeline so the BCCI I'm afraid if they want to be so responsible as to call for a shut down because deadlines that they imposed that are utterly impractical then be my guest. No what we've done is to come up with time frames that are doable and practical and that's where we stand."

    Hulse Calls Chamber Resolution, "Ludicrous"
    And while the PM is trying to make peace with the Chamber, today his leader of government business in the senate called their resolution ludicrous. That's because the resolution that the Chamber passed says that Senator Lizarraga will only participate in the Senate Inquiry if it is reconstituted as directed. Today Hulse said that to reconstitute it would be to break the rules, as in violating the standing orders: Hon. Godwin Hulse- Leader of Gov't Business - Senate: "It is very unfortunate because what the chamber is asking and the union and the PUP is for the senate to violate its standing orders, to overlook its rules. You cannot cherry pick the rules. The standing orders are the laws governing the procedures and operations in the senate. How can you talk about good governance an then you want to circumvent or overlook one of the rules which is the hallmark of good governance? Standing order 70 provides that every senate committee shall be so constituted, not may be, shall be as to ensure that the balance of the parties in the senate is reflected in the committee you cannot ignore that standing order and now want to call for a different composition."

    Finnegan Calls For OHS Bill, Now!
    And today, the UDP’s Michael Finnegan also loaded up on the Chamber of Commerce. He’s pushing for government to pass the Occupational Health And Safety Bill as is. Now, that’s one issue that the labour unions and the Chamber of Commerce definitely don’t agree on. Labour wants it in place badly to protect workers, but Capital says it will cost too much and affect their bottom lines. So, is Finnegan trying to drive a wedge between those two who are finding common cause against his government? Well, we’ll let you be the judge:… And Finnegan also sounded off on why he thinks the opposition and social partners have backed off in their zeal for an senate inquiry into immigration irregularities:

    Sharon Got Compensated Too
    Last night, we walked you through the land deal, which allowed Andre Vega, the son of former Deputy Prime Minister Gaspar Vega to make a major come-up at the cost of the government purse. For $15,000 dollars, Vega flipped ownership of a piece of land near Haulover Bridge, and he was compensated $400 thousand dollars from the Ministry Natural Resources, a Ministry which his father, Gaspar Vega, was running at the time. Well, that's only half the story, what if we told you that the Government lost an additional $400,000 which it had to pay to Sharon Pitts for an adjoining property? She entered the picture before Andre Vega back 2011, when the land was actually owned by Russell Carlton. That land is a total of 2.75 acres, and it is located near the Haulover Bridge.

    Hulse Says GOB Should Not Pay
    So did Minister of Natural Resources Godwin Hulse know about these particular deal? He ran the Ministry of Natural Resources between November 2015 and August, 2016. Today he told us he didn't know about this one, but he did know of others:… Jules Vasquez: "Is this something you were aware of during your tenure in the ministry of natural resources?" Hon. Godwin Hulse: "No No Jules, I wasn't aware at all it hadn't come to my attention. I heard it just like you but lots of similar cases, had come to my attention from other circles which we have been pursuing; and I had said that one of the things we would do and we would not continue to just simply compensate on these cases, we would have to then, review them and see who the guilty party was in terms of allowing it in the first place. I mean government's compensation is huge in these matters and we cannot continue to pay that kinda thing, it is, it is, it amounts to a serious situation when private land is stepped on - that should never have happened - and then flipped, and then flipped again, and then the court had ruled as I understand it, that innocent third party - not so innocent - must be compensated. Noh man, you can't countenance that."

    PUP Cites Vega Misfeasance
    And the Deputy Leader of the PUP agrees that government money should not have been used to pay for that kind of compensation. But today, Kareem Musa took it a step further; he said former lands minister Gaspar Vega must also be investigated for misfeasance. Hon. Kareem Musa - Caribbean Shores Representative: "Then minister of lands Gappy Vega knowingly issued a second title over a land that he knew was private that ultimately led to his son benefiting 385,000 dollars from the tax payers; let's not get confused not government, tax payers will now pay 385,000 dollars in profit when the minister or lands knowingly because the public officers, the professionals, the technicians on the ground told him Mr. Vega this is private land you cannot issue a second title over this. And if you knowingly issue a second title when that is private land to me that is again misfeasance in public office."

    Elsworth Missing For a Month
    Tonight the Lanza family is asking your help to find one of their own. 34 year old Elsworth Lanza, a resident of 143 George Street, Belize City has been missing for over a month. According to family members, Lanza was last seen on the 12th of September 2016 wearing a black T- Shirt and blue jeans with a pair of black and white tennis. He is over 6 feet tall and dark skinned. Anyone with information leading to the whereabouts of Lanza is asked to kindly contact the nearest police station or contact Rita Lanza at 625- 0943 or 661 1857.

    A-Rod Gets Five A Side Turf Field
    This weekend, a new indoor five-a-side football field will be opening in Benque Viejo del Carmen. We spoke to Alex Rodriquez, the owner of the field, about how he plans to use it… The field is open to use by anyone and Rodriquez promises that the reservation costs will be affordable.

    Channel 5

    A Third Week for B.N.T.U.’s Industrial Action
    The Belize National Teachers’ Union will continue its industrial action into a third week, possibly matching the length of the 2005 strike called after then-Prime Minister Said Musa introduced tough [...]

    Demonstration Planned for Wednesday as Meeting with P.M. Postponed
    During the meeting between the B.N.T.U. and the PM on Thursday, President Luke Palacio says that there was agreement that the presidents of the B.N.T.U., the Association of the Public [...]

    Prime Minister Outlines Social Security and Pensions
    The Prime Minister met until into the evening with the B.N.T.U. on Thursday. When he emerged from that meeting he told the media that there was agreement on many of [...]

    B.N.T.U. Gives Their Side on Labour Issues
    For the first time since the strike began, there appears to be a division established in the solid eight-point agenda of the B.N.T.U. – nine, if the salary adjustment on [...]

    OSH Bill Will Be Addressed Through N.T.U.C.B.
    The Occupational Safety and Health Bill is among a few demands that the trade unions, including the B.N.T.U., have with the business community.  It is the final point on a [...]

    B.N.T.U. Addresses Give-and-Take of Negotiation
    Speaking after the PM’s press conference much later in the evening on Thursday, B.N.T.U. president described the meeting as even more difficult than the previous. The eight points presented to [...]

    Will Chamber of Commerce Support B.N.T.U. with Shutdown of Businesses?
    Earlier today, the Belize Chamber of Commerce and Industry advised its members that it is yet to receive a formal response to a letter written to the Prime Minister on [...]

    P.U.P. Says Minister Vega Could Face Court Action for Double Dealing
    It has been a bad week for the Prime Minister, aside from the pressures of the strike by teachers and the decision for a shutdown by the business community as [...]

    Prime Minister Not Aware of Andre Vega Haulover Land Deal
    On Thursday night, the Prime Minister was asked about the scandalous hustle. His reaction was captured in less than thirty seconds.   Prime Minister Dean Barrow “No, no, no, yuh [...]

    Opposition Says Prime Minister Must Resign Over B.T.L. Settlement
    The Opposition People’s United Party is going after Prime Minister Dean Barrow once more on the Belize Telemedia Limited Settlement Agreement and is calling for his resignation.  It has been [...]

    Albert and Mesop Reps Want All Teachers Back in School
    U.D.P. Minister and party whip Michael Finnegan, together with Albert Area Representative Tracy Panton, held a press conference this afternoon at the party’s headquarters, shortly after the B.N.T.U. concluded a [...]

    U.D.P. Politicians Ask: What More Do You Want?
    Panton and Finnegan maintain that good governance is an inclusive process which should see equal responsibility from each of the social partners.  They have since turned to the teachers to [...]

    Belizeans on the Street Ask Government to be More Giving
    It’s been officially two weeks since students have not been in the classrooms. Today, a News Five crew took to the streets to poll residents on whether government should give [...]

    4 Accused in Dangriga Home Invasion Beating See Charges Dropped
    Back in early August, an amateur video went viral on social media of a Dangriga woman under attacked inside her home and in front of her children. The attackers were [...]

    Bail Granted as Trio’s Charges Dropped to Manslaughter
    In April of 2015, San Ignacio police charged Saul Ortiz, Windell Obando and a fifteen year old minor, now seventeen, for the murder of Orelio Montero. They were arraigned and [...]

    NICH Contemplates Changes to Senior Leadership
    Former President of NICH, Diane Haylock is currently doing the cocktail circuit in Taipei as Belize’s new ambassador to Taiwan. Since Haylock vacated the post she held since the first [...]

    Belmopan Area Mini-Bus Owners Complain Over Cut in Hours
    Mini bus owners in the Belmopan area say they are not happy with the Department of Transport. The operators who are members of the Western Mini Bus Owners Cooperative Society [...]

    Owners Say Transport in Villages Will be Affected
    So, what will these changes do? According to the Co-op, it will take more than half of their earnings and compound the transportation problems for villagers like those in Armenia [...]

    A Burn Victim’s Road to Recovery
    He was severely burned to both legs and a hand in an unfortunate mishap at his home in Concepcion, Corozal District, in June. But after spending a month and a [...]

    Police Graduate New Recruits at Passing Out Parade
    Earlier this week, the Police Department got a new set of officers fresh out of the Police Training Academy. With some sixteen weeks of intense training, one of the biggest [...]

    Taiwanese Embassy Hosts Annual Food Fair
    If you are looking for something to do this weekend, you might want to check out the Taiwanese Embassy’s food fair. The annual event is used to share Taiwanese culture [...]

    LOVE FM

    Luke Says He Will Play Prime Minister’s Game Indefinitely
    The ongoing strike by the Belize National teachers Union will extend into next week. Prime Minister Dean Barrow was unable to satisfy the Belize National Teachers Union yesterday and so today the teachers remained out of the classrooms for the ninth day. A massive demonstration was expected to take place in Belmopan on Monday where […]

    BNTU Asks Churches for Help
    While the teachers remain out of the classrooms, the Council of Management of the BNTU is seeking support from several other bodies including the churches. This morning BNTU representatives met with church leaders at the Roman Catholic Diocesan Office in Belize City. BNTU National President, Luke Palacio, told Love News that the purpose of the […]

    Mesop and Albert Reps Commend Teachers in the Classrooms Despite Ongoing Strike
    Area Representatives for the Mesopotamia division, Michael Finnegan and for the Albert division, Tracy Panton summoned the media this afternoon to a press conference where they spoke of the current strike action by the teachers from around the country. As the situation currently stands, the strike action will continue up to the middle of next […]

    Government Lays Out Its Position on the BNTU’s Demands
    As we mentioned, yesterday the Union representatives met with Prime Minister Dean Barrow. Following the almost four hour meeting, Prime Minister Barrow addressed some of what transpired. One of the Unions demands had to do with getting an international investigator to delve into the murder of Pastor Llewlyn Lucas. Another demand has to do with […]

    Luke’s Not So Subtle Threat to PSU
    Yesterday the Public Service Union which forms part of the Joint Negotiating Team, solidified its position via a press release. The PSU, while it supports the BNTU, has decided that it will not take any industrial action. We ask BNTU’s President, Luke Palacio to comment on the PSU’s stance.

    PUP Wants Prime Minister to Resign
    The People’s United Party is calling for the resignation of the Prime Minister of Belize, Dean Barrow on the grounds that they deem every industry in the country as being in a crisis situation. Area Representative for Caribbean Shores, Kareem Musa addressed the media today on the grounds for their demand as they focused mostly […]

    PUP Says Foreign Reserves are Dangerously Low
    We have heard the term Foreign Reserves time and time again – it is a necessity in every country whose economy depends on trade outside its borders. The BTL Arbitration payment has lowered Belize’s Foreign Reserves which is one of the issues that Kareem Musa of the PUP highlighted in today’s press conference. Musa reminded […]

    BREXIT and Belize’s Sugar Industry
    “The uncertainty in the UK’s sugar business has ramifications for its importers; perhaps none more so than Belize” – that is a quote coming out of an online publication dated October 13, 2016. The BREXIT movement in June 2016 has been seeing some changes in the United Kingdom that will undoubtedly trickle down to other […]

    Amandala

    Mother says daughter stabbed her with broken pint
    A 23-year-old Belize City woman was remanded to prison on a charge of wounding for allegedly stabbing her mother with a broken pint bottle during a domestic dispute at their family home on Police Street. Anifah Marin appeared unrepresented before Senior Magistrate Sharon Fraser, who read a single charge of wounding to her. Marin, a resident of 193 Police Street, pleaded not guilty to the charge. That, however, was not Marin’s only problem in court. Court records confirm that she owed the court for a previous conviction. Marin’s court fine amounted to $410 for two offences. She was fined $305 for possession of a controlled drug and $105 for causing a bicycle to proceed up a one-way street.

    BNTU “nuh di play wid Barrow;” strike continues!
    –It has already been 8 days since the Belize National Teachers’ Union (BNTU) made the call for national industrial action and the boycott of classes countrywide because the union felt that Prime Minister Dean Barrow wasn’t sufficiently responsive to their demands for better and more transparent governance. However, the call for industrial action could have been halted given the results of a meeting at the Best Western Belize Biltmore Plaza in Belize City today between PM Barrow and the BNTU executive. After four hours of meeting with the teachers, the Prime Minister was the first to address the media, and he gave the impression that the teachers would return to classes no later than tomorrow, Friday. When BNTU president Luke Palacio emerged to talk to the media, however, it was to drop a bombshell — the protest continues for the 9th straight day, tomorrow, Friday. Palacio conceded that Barrow only addressed the good governance aspect of the union’s agenda but failed to adequately address the other labor-related matters included in its 8-point set of demands. In regards to one item on the BNTU’s good governance agenda, which calls for the appointment o

    Chamber threatens 1-day shutdown of businesses nationwide
    Eight months after securing its third consecutive victory at the polls, the administration of Prime Minister Dean Barrow is facing its worst political crisis. It all began with the gruesome beheading of Pastor Llewellyn “Lue” Lucas in July and the release of the explosive Auditor General’s Special Report into the Passport, Visa and Nationality Departments in August, and most recently the government has been faced with industrial action by the Belize National Teacher’s Union (BNTU) in its efforts to advance a good governance agenda. In three months, the Barrow administration has survived several protest marches led through its streets, and it has withstood the shutdown of schools countrywide, but now looming overhead is a national shutdown of businesses and the possible collapse of a senate inquiry that many Belizeans had clamored for. At its special membership meeting held on Wednesday night, the Belize Chamber of Commerce voted that its Senator, Markhelm “Mark” Jude Lizarraga, would only participate in the Senate Special Select Committee if its composition is modified, allowing for the Government to have only one representative, instead of the two that Government now has.

    US cops seek Raymond Edwards for vehicle title scam
    A Belizean national living in the United States remains wanted in connection with a car title scam that has been ongoing for almost two years. News reports reveal that Raymond Edwards, age not provided, based his operations in Lancaster, California, where he lived. He allegedly stole the identities of almost two dozen persons, received high-end vehicles on their credits and used those vehicles as collateral for loans in the range of hundreds of thousands of dollars. Twenty of his victims have already been identified in Ohio, and there are other victims that detectives believe are yet to be identified. “Mr. Raymond Edwards has stolen the identity of several people not only within the Antelope Valley, but as far as Ohio. He would use their identity to purchase high-end exotic vehicles in the range of $100,000.” said Deputy Miguel Ruiz of the Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Department in an interview with Abc7.com dated September 30, 2016.

    BNTU’s OW branch president’s vehicle windshield smashed
    Hon. Patrick Faber, the Minister of Education and Deputy Prime Minister of Belize, reported to Ladyville police that his Mazda CX7 SUV was torched by an arsonist sometime after midnight on Wednesday morning. The incident was caught on camera and the perpetrator’s face was revealed. However, hours later, the windshield of the vehicle of Orange Walk BNTU (Belize National Teachers’ Union) branch president Otilio Muñoz was smashed. Unfortunately, it occurred sometime around 3 a.m. on Thursday while Muñoz slept in his home. He has since filed a police report, but investigations are challenging, as the matter was not caught on camera.

    Pirates threaten Coast Guard
    A group of coastal pirates who prowl the high seas in southern Belize in the Stann Creek District area, and who target fishermen to rob or kill them, have reportedly sent threatening messages to the Belize Coast Guard that when they (the Coast Guard) confront them, they will kill them in a shootout. The Coast Guard has thus made the apprehending of these pirates a high priority. According to the Coast Guard, the agency will do whatever needs to be done to protect the lives of fishermen working at sea from pirates and sea bandits, and they are conducting frequent aggressive patrols in likely areas to confront the criminals. The announcement was made today by Admiral Johnny Borland, Commandant of the Belize Coast Guard, at the Coast Guard Headquarters at Belizean Beach, Mile 4 on the George Price Highway, during the opening of their new facility. Commandant Borland said that the Coast Guard have formed a task force along with the Fisheries Department to hunt down the pirates to bring them to justice. He said that the public should be reassured that the Coast Guard will be out on the seas conducting anti-crime patrols to ensure the long-term safety of those who travel or fish in those waters.

    Sugar City Hoops weekend scores
    The Sugar City Hoops Basketball Tournament/Season continued over the weekend with Week 6 games on Friday and Saturday nights at the East Sports Center. In the opener on Friday, October 7, (17 & Under) Technical HS won, 54-40, over Muffles Bobcats. Top scorers for Technical HS were Clinton Shaw 25 pts (game high) 3 rebs 5 stls 3 assts, Vijay Young 14 pts 7 rebs 2 stls, and David Smith 5 pts 2 stls; while for Muffles Bobcats, Kristian Cabrera had 15 pts 13 rebs 2 stls, C.J. Vasquez 10 pts 7 rebs 4 assts 2 stls, and Dickerson Li 6 pts 12 rebs. And in the nightcap, (25 & Under) Jumanji dropped One Love, 84-63. Leading Jumanji were Roger Reneau 21 pts 9 rebs 4 stls 3 assts, Craig Cooper 21 pts 8 rebs, and Shemar White 19 pts 11 rebs 4 stls 3 assts; while One Love was led by Tyrone Baptist 21 pts 7 rebs 4 stls, Dedron Baptist 15 pts 2 rebs 5 stls 3 assts, and Kevin Rampassard 12 pts 7 rebs 2 stls.

    Scores from SSBA Basketball Tournament in San Ignacio
    The San Ignacio & Santa Elena Basketball Association (SSBA) hosted 9 games this past weekend at the Victor Galvez Stadium in San Ignacio Town. On Friday night, defending U19 champs, Pepsi Christian Ambassadors defeated Belmopan, 65-46. Pepsi Christian Ambassadors was led by Tevaughn Usher, who scored 25 points, while Arik Nicholas and Paul Flowers, Jr. netted 10 pts each. The top scorers for Belmopan were Denzel Brown and Gabriel Hyde, who tallied 11 and 9 pts, respectively. In game 2, Maria Chang/4G Lyte avenged their opening loss by defeating Invaders, 69-23, in the Over 35 division. The top scorers for Maria Chang/4G Lyte were Kevin Domingo and Vince “Post” Estrada, who sank 18 pts apiece, while Cassian “Russian” Flowers chipped in with 11 pts. Invaders was led by Dwayne Gongora with 8 pts. In the nightcap, Maraton Mambas defeated Sacred Heart Junior College, 52-44, in the Senior division. Akeem Watters was the top scorer for Maraton Mambas with 17 pts, while Anfernee Young and Michael Lyons scored 8 pts each. Elvert Ariola sank 14 pts for Sacred Heart Junior College, while Antwan McFadzean scored 13 pts.

    BDFA U-17 playoffs completed; championship game set for October 30
    According to a release yesterday from the Belize District Football Association (BDFA), under Chairman William Moguel, playoffs were held on Monday, October 10, at the MCC Grounds for the previously suspended McLean Insurance Brokers Under-17 Football Championship. Games in this tournament were suspended following the weekend National U-17 Championship finals on August 21 in Belmopan, which was won by the Belize District selection. In trying to complete its playoffs in one day, the games on Monday were 25-25 (25 minute halves). Scoring details were not provided in some games due to incomplete referee reports, according to Chairman Moguel. In game 1, Hattieville Riverside Boys eliminated Carlston FC, 2-1.

    1960s Landivar center forward Charles “Bawbu” Humes passes
    We’re still trying to get some details on the recent passing of one of Belize’s top footballers in the latter 1960s and early 1970s. Landivar dominated Belize City 1st Division football during the late 1960s and early 1970s, when their reign was ended by Berger 404 in 1974/75. Angus “Mr. Ball” Vernon and Keith Gardiner were key components in the Landivar attack in the early to mid-1960s, but at some point in the latter 1960s or early 1970s, the center forward position on Landivar was held, and with consistent success, by a slim, soft-spoken and perfect gentleman, Charles “Bawbu” Humes, who delivered the game winning goal in many a 1-nil Landivar victory. Fixtures in the solid Landivar defence around that time were sweeper Clarence “Willie” Williams and stopper Wallace “Rungu” Glynn, along with flank defenders Randolph “Coco” Young and Ernest Jones. Bawbu was not ranked among the best strikers ever in Belize; but he was good, good enough to deliver at the striking position for a championship team. After retiring from football, Bawbu re-surfaced as a coach for many years in ladies softball at Rogers Stadium.

    BNTU determination vs GOB desperation
    When sitting, elected governments in poor, post-colonial societies like Belize are being challenged from below, so to speak, they feel the need to reassure the invisible power structure that they are fully in charge of things. The two-week old industrial action of the Belize National Teachers Union (BNTU) represents such a challenge to the United Democratic Party (UDP) government of Prime Minister, Rt. Hon. Dean O. Barrow. The invisible, or low-profile, power structure which he must reassure includes, for argument’s sake, the banks, the Mennonites, Bowen & Bowen, the major foreign investors, the foreign churches, the British and the Americans, the big merchant houses, and some leading, wealthy native families. As we write this editorial in the pre-dawn on Thursday, October 13, 2016, we do not know the outcome of a special general meeting held by the Belize Chamber of Commerce and Industry (BCCI) on Wednesday evening, October 12. That general meeting had the potential to become a game changer in the ongoing face-off between the Government of Belize (GOB) and the BNTU, because the one-day shutdown of businesses which was an agenda proposition of the BCCI meeting, if approved, would strengthen the BNTU’s hand when the leadership of the teachers meet with the Prime Minister on Thursday afternoon, October 13.

    From the Publisher
    Amongst the Europeans, the French are usually considered amongst the most enlightened of the lot. When you consider France’s imperial and colonial history in places like Haiti, Vietnam, and Algeria, however, the behavior of the French was the furthest thing from enlightened. From the time this newspaper began 47 years ago, we have spoken to you of white supremacy, but perhaps, as a teaching tool, we should have been speaking to you of black distress instead. White supremacy, you see, has been dedicated to disguising itself, following the initial phases of violent conquest, imperialism, and enslavement. Overall, colonialism was supposed to be a more enlightened form of rule, a softer form of imperialism, wherein the Europeans began to integrate into their colonial administrations some specially selected and trained natives. Eventually, in a colony like British Honduras, you actually had native heads of departments in the public service sector. The thing the Europeans could not cover up was the black distress at the base of the socio-economic pyramid which their white supremacist systems occasioned.

    International freelance journalist writes
    Dear Editor, Let’s say I am a Belizean student. Let’s say I am six years old. In the future, I will be a part of the progress (or regression) of this country I love. I’ll be: a teacher, politician, construction worker, policeman/woman, nurse, electrician, drug-dealer, hustler, prostitute, or a host of other things. Depending on my education. Meanwhile, I depend on the impetus, knowledge, wisdom, passion and commitment of my teachers. From the time I begin learning things at home (birth), until the time I graduate, I will be dependent on the things I am taught, and those things I am taught will be dependent on the things my educators are taught. And, those things will depend on what my educators can afford to teach me. Not just with their money that they take from their own pockets and purses to compensate for the things not available to them due to lack of proper funding, but also with their own education. We, as a country, are limited only by ourselves. The single most important thing we could invest in, is education. Or else, what will we have?

    Political suicide vs moral suicide
    Dear Editor, Please allow me space in your widely circulated newspaper to address a major root-cause of rampant crime – CORRUPTION! “Corruption is an insidious plague that has a wide range of corrosive effects on societies. It undermines democracy and the rule of law, leads to violations of human rights, distorts markets, erodes the quality of life and allows organized crime, terrorism and other threats to human security to flourish. This evil phenomenon is found in all countries – big and small, rich and poor – but it is in the developing world that its effects are most destructive. Corruption hurts the poor disproportionately by diverting funds intended for development, undermining a Government’s ability to provide basic services, feeding inequality and injustice and discouraging foreign aid and investment. Corruption is a key element in economic underperformance and a major obstacle to poverty alleviation and development…” (excerpt taken from the foreword of Kofi A. Annan, former United Nations Secretary-General on the presentation of the instrument on the United Nations Convention against Corruption (UNCAC) on 31st October 2003.) With the above excerpt from the former UN Secretary-General, I will make an attempt at addressing the perceived reasons for the Prime Minister of Belize being so resolute on not signing the UNCAC.

    Blessed Oscar, pray for us!
    Dear Editor, So the prophets of the Catholic Church in Belize, Bishop Dorick Wright and Auxiliary Bishop Christopher Glancy, have been reined in, sadly by no other than Papal Apostolic Nuncio Archbishop Léon Kalenga Badikebele. I wonder what Pope Francis has to say! Prophets call out wrongdoers and speak out against social injustice, agitating for the care of the poor, the orphaned and the widows, to borrow words from the Christian Bible. The Catholic leadership of Belize saw and responded; they saw the injustices against the masses in the corruption in high places in Belize. They STOOD UP for the people — like true prophets. No one would disagree with Archbishop Kalenga that the children of Belize should be back in school. His stance, however, comes across as at least myopic when he basically chastised the striking teachers (there are ‘other means’), who represent the voice of the masses, and weakened their position, at least in the eyes of the Prime Minister who will now not talk to them directly. Glaringly absent from the Archbishop’s pronouncements, certainly falling short of Church teaching and mission, was a public and pointed calling out of those in power to not play the people and, most importantly, for them to repent and correct their erring ways.

    Government corruption versus national survival
    For the past few weeks the issue that has gripped national attention is the confrontation of the Government with the teachers and schools. But first and foremost it is important to know and understand that the nation of Belize maintains schools, Government and all the other social institutions and organizations so that each, within its own portfolio and responsibilities, pursues: (1)The welfare and good governance of the nation (2)That schools and Government are equally basic national educational institutions, each instructing and training in its own field of responsibilities by its performance of its obligations and duties. Government educates informally and demonstrates good from negative and bad governance through the legislative, judiciary, executive, Cabinet, and all other government committees. Schools train and educate through civic training, progressive values and positive attitudes. They train and prepare the citizenry to enable the achievement of societal highest potential.

    PUP calls Senate Special Select Committee “bogus;” will not participate
    On Tuesday, the Opposition People’s United Party (PUP) issued a press release making it absolutely clear that it would not participate in a Senate Special Select Committee which it had dubbed, “bogus.” “The People’s United Party continues to demand that an independent and impartial Senate Special Select Committee be appointed to conduct the senate inquiry into the Immigration and Nationality scandal,” read the release. For reference, the Opposition had made the call for a Senate Special Select Committee to investigate the findings of the Auditor General’s special report into the Passport, Visa and Nationality Department which documented thousands of irregularities. At the Senate meeting held on September 30, Church Senator, Ashley Rocke, tabled a motion on the terms of reference and the composition of the motion, which received majority support after a vote was taken.

    The Reporter

    Mexico expresses satisfaction that GOB has signed contracts for lighting and outdoor courts
    The Mexican Embassy has expressed satisfaction that the government has signed the contract for the lighting of the Marion Jones Sporting Complex and for the design of the indoor basketball and volleyball facility. “The People and Government of Mexico, which secured a donation of 5 million US […]

    UB student Gian Bethran drowns
    A 19-year-old student of the University of Belize, Gian Jaheed Bethran drowned on Sunday afternoon while on an outing in the Rivera area in Belmopan where he was swimming with friends. Bethran, who reportedly couldn’t swim, was sitting on a log in the creek in the […]

    Three murders over holiday weekend
    Three people’s lives were cut short by violence over the Pan American holiday weekend in different locations. The first incident occurred on Saturday in San Ignacio town when shortly after dawn on Saturday when a passersby near the bus stop at the corner of Joseph […]

    Accident in OW claims two lives
    Written By M. Sutherland A road traffic accident on the August Pine Ridge and San Felipe main road in Orange Walk district on Friday night claimed the life of two motorists. According to police reports, at around midnight on Friday officers were called to the scene of a road traffic […]

    Traffic accident claims Jairo Sosa
    Written by M. Sutherland A road traffic accident on the Philip Goldson Highway between miles 13 and 14 Friday night claimed the life of 20-year-old Jairo Sosa. Around 10:30 that night Jamie Young, 28, a laborer from Sandhill was driving a Nissan Navarro pickup truck in the direction of Belize […]

    Business will shut down if PM doesn’t comply
    The Belize Chamber of Commerce and Industry (BCCI) decided this week, by majority vote, that it will go as far as a one-day shut down of businesses if the government does not comply with its good governance demands. The BCCI members met at a Special […]

    US government donates building and equipment to Belize Coast Guard
    A spanking new building – an addition to the existing headquarters for the Belize National Coastguard Service, along with equipment, all worth almost US $3 million, was handed over to coast guard personnel on Tuesday. The new building will be used to treat Coast Guard […]

    Tourism numbers still up after Hurricane Earl
    According to the latest statistics from the Belize Tourism Board (BTB), the tourism sector managed to show growth in the third quarter and for this year overall, despite the damage caused by Hurricane Earl. On Monday, the BTB issued statistics for the first nine months of 2016, […]

    Hulse to BCCI “Stop wasting the nation’s time”
    Senator Godwin Hulse condemned the Belize Chamber of Commerce and Industry (BCCI) this week for its position on the Senate Special Select Committee formed to launch an inquiry into the Auditor General’s Special Audit Report of the Immigration and Nationality Department. Responding to a report that the […]

    Caribbean Union of Teachers supports BNTU
    The Caribbean Union of Teachers (CUT), this week, wrote to Prime Minister Dean Barrow in support of the Belize National Teachers Union (BNTU). The CUT, the umbrella organization for all teachers’ unions in the Caribbean, wrote to Barrow on Monday, saying that it has been monitoring the […]

    Taiwanese Belizeans fete105th ROC 10/10 National Day
    Taiwanese Belizeans celebrated the 105th anniversary of the Republic of China and Taiwan’s National Day, October 10, at a reception hosted by Taiwan’s Ambassador to Belize, H. E. Benjamin Ho at the Princess Hotel on Friday evening, October 7. Honored guests Governor GeneralSir Colville Young Sr, Prime Minister Dean Barrow […]

    Tilapia bonanza for farmer Olivia Vasquez
    Growing Tilapia with the help of the Taiwan Technical Mission at Central Farm has yielded a bonanza for woman farmer Olivia Vasquez of Sirena Village, Cayo district. With a guaranteedprice of $5.50 to $6.50per pound, her annual harvest of 6,000 – 8,000 pounds of beautiful red tilapia from eight ponds […]

    Young Belizeans benefit from bartending and wait staff training
    October 4th saw 37 young Belizeans graduate from Beltraide’s Bartending and Wait Staff training. Beltraide partnered with the Belize Institute of Mixology, a privately owned hospitality training company, to offer the program. Luis Alamilla, the owner and primary instructor, explained that this year’s group excelled in all areas and was […]

    Strike rages on! BNTU not moved by PM
    Schools will remain closed as the impasse between the Belize National Teachers Union (BNTU) and the Government of Belize continues. The BNTU and Prime Minister Dean Barrow held a four-hour meeting on Thursday, after which the Union said the strike was still on because GOB […]

    BWU broke! Member blames executive! Executive says “no comment”
    The executive of the Belize Workers Union (BWU) is planning a membership meeting to discuss its financial situation after leaked documents showed that tens of thousands of dollars are missing from its accounts. The documents were provided by a reliable source who accessed the Union’s […]

    Gaspar Vega Named in Multi-Million dollar Land Hustle
    On the heels of what seemed to be a less than productive meeting with the executive of the BNTU, Prime Minister Dean Barrow refused to entertain any questions about his former Deputy and senior UDP Minister Gaspar Vega. Vega has been named in what has all the appearances of institutionalized […]

    Faber loses another SUV, this time to arson
    Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Education, Patrick Faber has lost a second government-issued SUV in as many months, this time to arson. The government has linked this act of sabotage to the current strike by public school teachers. The incident happened at Faber’s Lord’s […]

    Oceana concerned over seismic surveys
    Cabinet, this week, approved plans for a Seismic Survey of Belize’s offshore areas. But Oceana, the environmental watchman, says the survey poses a grave threat to the country’s marine eco-system and has ominous implications dor the future of offshore drilling . The approval came after […]

    Breaking Belize NewsPJ

    PUP demands that PM Barrow resigns
    The People’s United Party (PUP) has issued a press release demanding that PM Barrow resigns. “Today the Government of Belize paid the Ashcroft Group US$67.5 million. This has drained the foreign reserves of Belize. Belize’s foreign reserves now stand at a dangerously low level,” […]

    Courts Belize launches their ‘Island Home Collection’ brand
    The Belize City branch of Courts Belize is launching, in style, the ‘Island Home Gallery ‘ brand of furniture. The event commenced this evening and will continue tomorrow, Saturday from 8 a.m. to 4 p.m. at the Courts branch located on the Phillip Goldson […]

    BNTU strike continues Monday; National demonstration planned for Wednesday
    The Belize National Teachers Union (BNTU) met with PM Barrow yesterday afternoon in Belize City to discuss issues of the good governance agenda; however the meeting proved to be futile as the BNTU announced this afternoon that the strike will continue on Monday. At […]

    A Government for all- more infrastructure in the south
    Although the UDP won no seats in the South in 2012 and only one seat there in 2015, that part of the Country continues to enjoy its fair share of investment in National Development under the good stewardship of Prime Minister Rt. Hon. Dean […]

    Arlington drive Residents plea for help to alleviate flooding
    Residents of Arlington drive are pleading to the relevant authorities for help with the water situation in their area. The water appears to have settled in their residences previously forcing them and their children to walk through it daily. One would believe that this […]

    Big time hustling at Land’s Department; GOB pays Gapi’s son $400,000 for land bought for $15,000
    The Government of Belize is currently under a lot of pressure from the Belize National Teachers’ Union (BNTU) and Belize Chamber of Commerce and Industry (BCCI) regarding corruption in the country. A new unveiling of a very controversial land deal has appeared at an […]

    One man detained for burning DPM’s vehicle
    Police have detained one man in connection with the burning of Deputy Prime Minister (DPM), Patrick Faber’s vehicle. The incident occurred around midnight on Wednesday and the video surveillance on the DPM’s property caught the culprit when he climbed the gate with a gallon […]

    Blogs

    Self Defense and Can You Go 9 Days Phone-less?
    As many of you know low season is upon us and my $700 128 GB Nexus 6p smart phone recently got stolen by an “Evil Houdini.” As one friend said after hearing my story, that guy is too good at his job. Thankfully I had 5 great people come to the rescue. 4 of them were willing to mule phones and the 5th was my wonderful Mom who wanted to make me feel better after being stung and put $300 in my Canadian bank account towards a new phone. While the following Act Fast on a Stolen Cell Phone was written more so for loosing a Smart phone in Belize, there are some great tips that apply anywhere. There are also some really good links to beef up your phone security and how to track it down from your laptop.

    A Day of Shopping: The Macy’s, Staples and Philippine Embassy of Belize City
    I like a day in Belize City. There. I said it. No, it is not Paris or New York. No, I would not recommend it to first time visitors to Belize. No, I don’t recommend taking a solo midnight stroll. (I REALLY don’t recommend that one.) But it has it charms. You don’t have to look too closely to feel like it’s 50 or 100 years ago. Yesterday I took the water taxi over (1.5 hour ride) for a day of shopping. Rain clouds were hovering over but I didn’t see rain all day like San Pedro did. My first stop? The Macy’s of Belize – Mirab’s. It is just steps away from the water taxi, just outside the Tourist Village Cruise Ship Dock. Inside, I found much of what I needed – light blankets, baking pans, towels and more. Things that I couldn’t find in San Pedro or ones that were much cheaper in Belize City.

    International Sourcesizz

    River of Life team to travel to Belize
    The Destination Belize Mission Team from River of Life Community Church in Elkhart is traveling to Belize Nov. 5-12 to restore and renovate the childhood home of a famous Belizean pianist and composer, Frankie Reneau. Pastors Jim and Jenny Duncan purchased Frankie’s childhood home several years ago and had it moved to their mission property in Boston Village. When completed, the home will serve as their personal residence, a guest house, and a music studio for their School of Music. The public is invited to help fund this project by going to Duncan’s GoFundMe account and making a donation. River of Life Community Church has supported pastors Jim and Jenny Duncan for many years and has previously sent teams to work on projects to support their ministry in Belize. The church also supports other mission projects around the world.

    What to Eat in the Jungle for Two Weeks
    The great thing about access to grocery stores is the ability to have a hankering for something and then immediately be able to act on it by buying the necessary ingredients. Unfortunately the Central American jungle is lacking in major markets, so for multi-week stints camping beneath the tropical canopy, meal planning is an absolute necessity. This summer I spent 14 days sleeping in a jungle hammock in Belize’s Chiquibul Reserve, a tropical rainforest that is home to a huge range of animals, from crocodiles to jaguars to mosquitoes, all of which stole my blood. Most notably it’s the home of the country’s surviving scarlet macaws, a species whose numbers dwindled to barely more than 200 in recent years. The conservationist group Scarlet 6 Biomonitoring responded to this situation by planting volunteers (like me) beneath the nests of fledgling macaws in order to keep poachers from climbing up the trees and snatching the babies to sell in Guatemala. Five years of this have bumped the macaw population up to 300, which is great news.

    Videos

  • Belize Day 2016, 10min. Belize Day 2016 at Hawthorn Park in Cicero, IL.

  • Excavation units are ready to go at Cahal Pech and International Archaeology Day, 1/2min.

  • This Video Shows What Not To Do When Facing A Hurricane, 1.5min. Going outside to experience the sheer force of a hurricane is never a good idea, however tempting it might seem. Case in point, the video shows a man in Bermuda as he “leans into the throes” of hurricane Nicole this week.

  • Intimately Yours, 24min. on Open Your Eyes...

  • Shake Your Shimmy - Belly Dance Performance, 27min. on Open Your Eyes...

  • Cocktails For The Manatees, 21min. “Cocktails with the Manatees,” an evening of pleasant socialization around this important cause. It will be held on Saturday October 15th, 2016, from 7:00pm to midnight at the Hour Bar Field on Princess Margaret Drive. Admission fee is $30, entertained by the GillHarry Band, drinks and light food will be on sale along with raffles and live action to raise funds to protect our manatees.Come and join us.

  • Congratulations Guillermo "Mito" Paz for having the oldest copy of The San Pedro Sun!, 1min.

  • History of The San Pedro Sun Exhibit. Thank you all for joining us!, 13min.

  • Tarpon Video, 1/2min. Slow motion video of Tarpon taking a sardine from a hand.

  • Belize - Caye Caulker - Inselabenteuer, 7min.

    October 14, 2016


    FOR TODAY'S BELIZE WEATHER, CLICK HERE

    Click for our Daily Tropical Weather Report.

    Specials and Events

    Last night's TV news on Channel 7, Channel 5, LOVETV, PGTV, West Vision (Cayo) and CTV 3. Also with the most recent Open Your Eyes, Rise and Shine Morning Show, and the Dickie Bradley Specials


    The San Pedro Sun

    Belize Red Cross appeals to help Haiti after Hurricane Matthew
    During the first week of October, Belize was spared from the impact of Hurricane Matthew, a fierce category four hurricane that swept across the Caribbean and central Florida, USA. For countries like Haiti, Matthew did damage beyond repair, with an estimated two million people affected. The latest figures indicate that over 900 people in Haiti have lost their lives, and the Belize Red Cross (BRC) has expressed its solidarity, working around the clock to ender aid to the victims.40-haiti-hurricane-victims-epa-orlando-barria The BRC announced on Friday, October 7th that the International Federation of Red Cross and Red Crescent (IFRC) societies have launched an emergency appeal for $6.9 million to provide medical, shelter, water and sanitation assistance to 50,000 people ravaged by the storm in the southwest portion of Haiti. According to the press release issued by the IFRC, Matthew’s torrential rains and winds have flooded towns and roads, destroyed homes and buildings and collapsed the main bridge in the south, making the affected areas extremely difficult to reach.

    Caye Notes: Garifuna Council Fundraiser and Bird Watching in San Pedro
    The National Garifuna Council San Pedro Branch (NGCSPB) will be hosting their second food sale fundraiser on Saturday, October 15th at the Central Park. Starting at 11AM, you can purchase staple Garifuna staple dishes such as hudut for $10, and boil-up for $12. Rice and beans will also be available for $7 and up The NGCSPB asks for the community’s support to help them fundraise for their upcoming festivities planned for Garifuna Settlement Day (Saturday, November 19th).
    The Belize Audubon Society invites everyone in San Pedro to come and learn about the birds in your area. No need to register, just show up at Central Park at 6AM on Sunday the 16th.

    International friendly match between Belize Jaguars and Honduras ends 2-1
    The Belize National Football Team (Jaguars) took on the National Football Team from Honduras in an international friendly match on Saturday, October 4th at the Football Federation of Belize (FFB) stadium in the city of Belmopan. The Jaguars gave the Catrachos a tough game, but lost to the visitors in a 2-1 game score. The game started at 4PM and Belizeans from many parts of the country made their way to the FFB stadium to support the national team. Among the well- known Belizean football stars was Belize Pro Footballer of the Montreal Impacts, Michael Salazar, who travelled to Belize to play in the match. The game was in preparation for the upcoming matches on the road to the World Cup Russia 2018.

    Miss Belize Universe, Rebecca Rath visits Ambergris Caye
    Miss Belize Universe 2016 and Dangriga’s beauty ambassador, Rebecca Rath, visited Ambergris Caye on Sunday, October 10th. The visit was a part of her preparation process before her upcoming participation in the Miss Universe Pageant on January 29, 2017 in Manila, Philippines. During her visit to La Isla Bonita, Rath took the opportunity to mingle with residents and continue her training for the international pageant. While in San Pedro Town, Rath was trained by Enrique de Leon, who has vast experience in pageants and works along with the Miss Belize Organization. He emphasized that the pageant is as much about Belize as it is about Rath, and that by visiting as many parts of the country, it will help her portray that Belizean experience when she goes to the pageant in the Philippines. “As an Organization, we are looking to promote all that we offer as a country when she goes to the pageant,” said de Leon. “Everything that Rebecca takes with her will give a true picture of what Miss Belize is with the support of what the country has to offer to the world.”

    Ambergris Today

    CG Esthetics Showcases New Skin Care Product
    Guest were greeted with wine and Mrs. Dawn Kennedy Shake showcased a new skin care product line to customers and friends of CG Esthetics on Wednesday, October 12, 2016. Carol Goudreau, owner of CG Esthetics was happy to host the ‘happy hour’ event. A small presentation about the product and how it works was given, while Carol greeted her guest with wine and snacks. Those interested took the opportunity to sample the product for free as Ms. Dawn stands by the product 100%. The new skin care product is only available in the U.S. and Canada, but is being made available in Belize through CG Esthetics. It is recommended for both male and female from age 16 and older.

    Misc Belizean Sourcesmzz

    NEMO Minister of State Hon Edmond Castro Hands Over Houses to Hurricane Earl Victims in the Stann Creek District
    Minister of State for National Emergency Management Hon. Edmond Castro was in the Stann Creek District yesterday, Wednesday October 12, 2016 officially handing over houses to victims of Hurricane Earl. Accompanied by Area Representative for Dangriga Hon. Frank “Papa” Mena and NEMO Dangriga Coordinator Victor Castillo, Hon. Castro handed over houses to four families in Dangriga and one in the village of Santa Rosa in the Stann Creek District. These are part of a total of over 180 houses that are being constructed by the Government of Belize through NEMO, more than 60 of which are already completed. More than 80 roofs have also been repaired and more than 1,400 families assisted with materials to repair their homes in the four districts most affected by Hurricane Earl, namely Belize District, Cayo, Orange Walk and Stann Creek.

    Belize Raptor Research Institute's Annual Bird-a-thon
    This year, Ian Anderson's Caves Branch Jungle Lodge captured the championship title of the Belize Raptor Research Institute's Annual Bird-a-thon Competition. Renowned birder aficiondao Roni Martinez handed over the H. Lee Jones Cup with the Caves Branch Jungle Lodge plate now included on the trophy and this has now taken up a residence on our wall of fame. This means Caves Branch Jungle Lodge Estate has been named the "Birdiest" destination in Belize!

    Contract signed for FIFA standard lights at Marion Jones
    I am pleased as the Minister responsible for sports in Belize to announce that a contract has been signed between UNOPs (United Naions Office for Projects) and the Maheia Constuction Group for the installation of FIFA standards lights at the Marion Jones Sporting Complex. This is indeed a milestone as we continously strive to make Marion Jones the premier sporting facility in the country. It is only through partnership that this development becomes possible. Thanks goes out to the Government of Mexico who is one of such parners.

    Wow. Tourists can anchor with cement blocks off the coast of San Pedro
    Yes the cinder block is how these tourist anchor on our World Heritage Site while they fish without licences and snorkel without tour guides. It seems no government agency will step up to be responsible for monitoring or enforcing rules and regulations in this area.

    Orange Walk BNTU Branch manager victim of vandalism
    This is what the vehicle belonging to Otilio Muñoz, president of BNTU Orange Walk looks like.

    Candle Light Vigil and Ecumenical Service headed by the BNTU Corozal Town Branch
    Yesterday October 12th, 2016 at around 6:45 p.m. were overwhelmingly welcomed by our Corozal community. Today is an important day as the BNTU goes back to the table to negotiate with the Government. We ask that the Prime Minister be humbled and adhere to the cries of our nation, his nation.

    Dia de los Muertos & Los Finados
    Although, the Day of the Dead/All Souls Day (known as Dia de los Muertos & Los Finados) is most prominently recognized and celebrated in Mexico it is also very popular in many villages and towns in Belize. This is due to the fact that the tradition of celebrating the life and death of loved relatives dates back to the ancient Maya's Hanal Pixan. This celebration is also linked to Catholicism, the primary religion in Belize. On el Dia de los Muertos, Maya and Mestizo communities across the country unanimously get together to commemorate the life and death of ancestors. This is done by decorating small tables as altars at home and including water, flowers, fruits, sweets, candles and portraits of their deceased. Families make sure to have delicious traditional Belizean foods such as Tamales, Bollos, Caldo de Gallina local, Chirmole and Xpasha atole. These altars may also include favorite alcoholic drinks, rum and tequila. Families visit the cementery and carry along wreaths, candles, flowers and food which are placed on the graves of their beloved departed. Family members pray and thank their dead relatives for being a part of their lives and wish them the best in the afterlife. ¡Feliz Dia de los Muertos! Happy All Souls Day!

    Project Support Officer
    The Belize City House of Culture and Downtown Rejuvenation Project i slooking for a Project Support Officer

    Meet the Author Book reading featuring Ms.Zee Edgell
    A very special thank you to everyone who made our 'Time and the River' Meet the Author Book reading featuring Ms.Zee Edgell possible. There's still time to pre-order a copy of 'Time and the River', call 223-4524 to reserve your auto-graphed copy by Friday Oct.14th, 2016.

    BPP calls for additional conditions regarding good governance in Belize
    Amid the extreme crisis in governance that has gripped the nation, the Belize Progressive Party (BPP) reiterates its solid support of the BNTU in its yeoman’s effort to ensure the government of Belize (GOB) adopts, implements, and adheres to good governance practices and principles. In this regard, we encourage all unions, civil society organisations, the private sector, and tertiary level teachers and students to become actively involved in the BNTU’s just act of civil expression via industrial action. To add to the discourse, in the name of bringing not only an expression, but also the practice of good governance principles to the fore, the BPP champions the call for voter re-registration and re-districting to be held, on schedule, on or before 2017. Of note, 2017 will mark 20 years since any such re-registration exercise! After all, with the electorate’s franchise being fundamental to the democratic process, Belize can no longer afford to allow for outdated voters lists to erode the integrity of the electoral process.

    Forum on The Contemporary Maya in Northern and Southern Belize
    Members of the Maya group of Corozal (Yucatec Maya) "U ka Sijih le Mayahob" have been invited to participate in a two day forum at The University of Chetumal Quintana Roo (UCQROO) to discuss the topic of The Contemporary Maya in Northern and Southern Belize. Let's preserve our identity as Mayas of Northern Belize,(Corozal and Orange Walk)

    Belize Screen on the Green - October
    Belize Screen on the Green is featuring the move "Little Shop of Horros" for October! Bring the family and enjoy this classic. As always, movie starts at dark and popcorn and refreshments will be served for free (while they last). See you there! Thursday, October 20 at 6 PM - 9 PM at Governor General Field, Ring Road, Belmopan, Belize

    Paradise Theater playing this weekend:
    Skiptrace, Nerve, Ice Age, Lights Out. Due to multiple requests .. on Friday night ONLY we'll be replaying the Conjuring 2 at 7pm on Screen 1 in substitute of Skiptrace .. Skiptrace will play Saturday and Sunday on Screen 1 .. p.s. October is the month of Horror movies .. keep an eye out the next couple of upcoming weekends

    Fundraiser for National Garifuna Council SP Branch
    National Garifuna Counsel San Pedro Branch Food Sale this Saturday October 15 , 2016. We thank you in advance for your support. Please place you orders early. Don't miss out. We would like to take the time to Thank our Town's Mayor Mr. Daniel Guerrero and The Town Counsel's events committee for all their support as we prepare for our Garifuna Settlement Day Festivities. Special mention" Miss Daniela Guerrero" Thank you so much. We also thank the members of the Garifunal counsel and all those who donate to make these sales a success. And last but not least, we express our gratitude to all those of you who purchased last week and humbly invite those of you who have not as yet to do this Saturday. See you there!!!!!!!!

    Channel 7

    BNTU and PM Meet for 3.5 Hours, No Breakthrough
    The Teachers Union and Prime Minister Dean Barrow met for about three and a half hours today – from 2:00 to 5:30. At the end of it, the PM held a press conference which just concluded, and the teachers are now meeting to consider what he proposed. Our team is just returning from the press conference – and we’ll have all the major details for you in tonight’s news, but what we can tell you at this hour is that the Prime Minister agreed to most of their governance demands but did not give a timeline. That’s what the teachers union is pondering at this hour, and we’re closely monitoring the outcome of their deliberations – so stay tuned for that.

    Chamber Passes Resolution To Shutdown, Eventually
    But, the Chamber of Commerce is also an important part of the dynamic. That organization is also part of the negotiations with government, and it is making its own demands. Last night, at the end of a contentious meeting, their membership voted in favour of two resolutions last night at their Special General Meeting. The first is that their Senator, Mark Lizarraga, will only participate in the Senate Inquiry to investigate the Auditor General's Findings at the Immigration Department if certain conditions are met. The Government has to reconstitute its membership with the amended terms of reference. Bottom line? The Prime Minister is basically being told to limit Government membership on the Senate Select Committee to only one, and the investigation powers of the Committee will have to be broadened.

    Man Detained For Setting DPM Vehicle On Fire, Faber says Family Shaken
    Police have detained a Belize City man for setting the Deputy Prime Minister's vehicle on fire. As we reported, the vehicle was parked at Patrick Faber's home in Lord's Bank on Tuesday at midnight when a man jumped the fence and set the vehicle on fire on plain view of security cameras. 7News has learned from police that the man has confessed his involvement and has alleged that someone set him up to do it. While police investigate that angle, he is expected to be charged tomorrow. Today, Faber spoke for the first time since the fire. We met him at another event today, and he was noticeably still shaken after the vehicle fire. He told us his only concern is for his kids who were traumatized. Faber also threw out a few ideas as to why he was targeted, the main motive being politics.

    Aragon Says Supporters Did Not Smash Union Leader's Windshield
    But first, the teachers strike continued today – and many parents who have kids at home learning little more than Sponge Bob's latest tricks are losing their patience. Simultaneously, politicians from the ruling UDP are under increasing pressure to get things back to normal – because every day that the strike continues is an indictment against their governance practices. Either of those two factors could have led to what happened last night: Otilio Munoz's windshield was smashed. He's the president of the Orange Walk Branch of the Teachers Union and this morning he woke up to find that someone had done this to his windshield. Union activists suggest that the UDP is behind it. We asked Orange Walk East Area Representative Elodio Aragon about it today:… Jules Vasquez: "There are suggestions, just like there were suggestions when Mr. Faber's vehicle was set on fire, that someone sympathetic to the BNTU may have done that, there is a suggestion that the UDP loyalists are the ones who smashed Mr. Otilio windshield what do you have to say about that?"

    PM Makes Many Compromises
    So as we told you at the top of this segment, the Prime Minister held a press conference at the end of his over 3 hour meeting with the teachers unions. Here now are his comments about what transpired in the meeting, mostly unedited. Rt. Hon. Dean Barrow - Prime Minister: "With respect to item number 1 which is the senate select committee, the BNTU is still concerned as I understand it about the composition though not about the terms of reference. Their focus was on composition because they would like to see the government side go down to 1. That is not government's view, government insisted that the motion that was passed when the Senate met a week or so ago is what should stand. We feel that government having 2 senators will not in any way interfere with the ability of the senate select committee to do its job impartially.."

    PM Responds To Opposition On Senate Select Committee
    As you heard earlier on, the Chamber's resolution becomes yet another harsh criticism of the current Senate probe that is already on the move to start its investigation of the Immigration Department. As we showed you yesterday, none of the Social Partners were prepared to accept the Chairmanship yesterday at the first meeting of the committee. The principal concerns are that the Government currently has too much influence on the tribunal. The call is for the Prime Minister to ask one of his 2 senators to step down from the Committee. As you heard, he was not prepared to do that. So, The PUP also continues to question the resolve of the Prime Minister to thoroughly investigate the Auditor General's reports. At every stage of the process, the Opposition has been accusing the ruling party of trying to obstruct the path to a thorough Senate probe.

    Lights For Marion Jones Complex
    And switching to now to another kind of transparency in public life, the media was called today to witness the signing of a contract for the installation of lights on the football field at the Marion Jones Sporting Complex. Now, you mightn't even know that there is a field at the stadium – but it's there, alright, just buried under some dense overgrowth. Well, now as part of the ongoing plan to revive that moribund facility, the field is being resurrected. And while the signing of a contract to put up four lights wouldn't normally draw national media attention – this one did because it's the first contract awarded under an agreement with the Mexican Government. The Mexicans gave Belize a grant of 5 million US dollars for a sports facility at Marion Jones. What's novel about the grant is that it is being administered through an organization called UNOPS, the United Nations Office For Project Services. That means no hanky-panky politics in the awarding of the contracts; this money is administered by a UN Agency. Maheia's construction won the 450 thousand dollar contract to construct what are called "Class Two lights" and they signed the contract today. Here's more:…

    Plans For New Stadium Unveiled
    And today the Ministry of Sports also unveiled the plans for the real centerpiece of the Mexican funded project, which is a nine million dollar multipurpose volleyball and basketball facility – which will be placed on the same Marion Jones grounds, to the east of the main structure. It's a major sports complex, and this is also being administered by UNOPS – and is slated for completion in February 2018. Sharp outlined the basic details:… Allan Sharp - Steering Committee Member: "The basketball and volleyball facility which will be built just to the north of here which will have 4 training courts which can be converted to one main court with 2 side courts and the facility will be able to hold 1500 people but I think the main part of the project that government is trying to push is that sport needs facilities."

    The "No-Kickback" Contract
    But every stage of the project, from design to tendering is managed by UNOPS – no contracts are being assigned, awarded or influenced by anyone in government. That's a sharp deviation from business as usual – and usually, "business" means someone pockets a kickback. In fact, the Marion Jones Stadium where today's event was hosted might be a prime example of that. But that can't happen with this new facility because of the presence of UNOPS, and we asked the Minister of State how much the difference means to him:… Jules Vasquez: "Because it's run through UNOPS which is a UN agency no one can contact the contractor and say hey I mi get you that contract I need a lee 10%. These are things that happen in government that nobody likes to talk about but they're real. Were you alienated by this process which went through UNOPS agency?" Hon. Elodio Aragon Jr. - Minister of State, Youth, Sports, Culture: "None at all, none at all Jules; I think it's all about accountability and it's all about value for money that is what I've always talked about, value for money. And I think if we are going to get an investment especially a donation coming from Mexico it is imperative that we get value for money."

    Is Marion Jones Complex Being Elevated To The Detriment Of MCC?
    And so now that the Marion Jones Complex is getting new football lights – what does that mean for Belize City's primary football field – which is the MCC? We asked Aragon what are the plans for the MCC – which already had part of it property turned into a casino parking lot:… Jules Vasquez: "Are you all putting in lights here elevating this at the demise of MCC? Is it a suggestion that well guys we will have a well-lit football field over ya maybe you could switch over from MCC then turn MCC from a parking lot into an extension of the Princess. Maybe they could put a new casino where the MCC is; I don't know what you're plans are, you're friendly with the people."

    The Final Word Is In, The Strike Continues
    And the teachers union has decided: the strike continues tomorrow. Here's what Luke Palacio explained to the media after discussing with the committee of management after meeting the Prime Minister:… Reporter: "Are you guys going back to the classroom tomorrow? Do you continue with your strike action? Where do you stand as a union?" Luke Palacio - National President - BNTU: "We continue our strike action tomorrow because we are not satisfied with the outcome of what has transpired." Reporter: "Mr. Palacio what was different between this meeting and the last one two weeks ago?" Luke Palacio - National President - BNTU: "What was different? The difference is it got worse because basically we thought that we would have made some movements today. There were certain issues that we thought we could have moved on to get the prime minister to agree but instead we see that it has gone in a different direction."

    Free From Facebook Crime
    Today, two Belizean American women and a 14-year-old boy are on a plane back to the US after being held in prison for the last nine weeks. In August, sisters, Samanti Nicole Louis and Kimberlee Lino, a 14 year old boy, and Tiffany Rene Cacho of Dangriga, appeared in the Magistrate's Court, where they were charged with aggravated assault, damage to property and bodily harm on Dangriga resident, Bremime Martinez. Louis, Lino, Cacho and the minor broke into Martinez' home in early August and attacked her. The incident was caught on camera, and then uploaded onto Facebook, where it went viral. All were initially denied bail except for Cacho, who was eight months pregnant at the time of the incident.

    Strike Team Got A Raven
    The Southside Strike Team struck again today when they found a gun in an abandoned lot on Lake View Street in Belize City. The Strike Team conducted a search of the lot this afternoon, where they found a Raven Arms .25 pistol along with 30 live 9mm rounds of ammunition. No one was in the area that the gun was found, so it was submitted as found property. This is the same general area where a pineapple non lethal grenade was found yesterday.

    Otilio Undaunted
    Earlier on in the news we told you about Otilio Munoz. He’s the president of the Orange Walk Branch of the Teachers Union whose windshield was smashed this morning. It happened at around 3:00 in the morning when neighbours heard a loud noise.Munoz told the media today that he is undaunted by this:… Munoz has made a report to police – but says that unlike the Minister of Education, he doesn’t have any security cameras.

    The Fast Flip And Come Up, Vega Style
    As you hear on the news ever single night, the Government is under pressure to clamp down on corruption, and so a new revelation of a highly questionable land deal land comes up at a very bad time for the PM. It involves the former Deputy Prime Minister, Gaspar Vega, and his son, Andre, and the details of this deal gives cause for you to shake your head. It starts and ends with this prime piece of real estate near the Haulover Bridge. It's identified as in the Lands Registry System as Entry 14608, a 1.057-acre parcel between the Caribbean Sea and the Phillip Goldson highway. The documents show that on January 14, 2013, Gaspar Vega approved the purchase of the piece of land from the Government to Hilmar Alamilla, who is well-connected to Vega. The land was assessed at just over 6 thousand dollars, but, as seen in this document, Gaspar Vega directed Lands Commissioner Wilbert Vallejos to discount the value of the land to $2,500. The documents do not explain why he complied with such a questionable directive to give yet another discount on this expensive piece of sea frontage.

    A Conference About Caring
    A two-day conference on children with disabilities began today. Belizean health professionals as well as representatives from the Caribbean will be discussing ways to integrate these special needs kids into society so they can have a normal and enriching life. The speakers will also be focusing on those at risk of developing a disability early in life. Dr. Einstein Bodden opened today's ceremony. He was diagnosed with a condition called kypho-scoliosis at age 2, which is a deformity to the spine. And today, he is a perfect example of a man who defeated the odds to become a Doctor. We start off with his message. UNICEF Rep. Ivan Yerovi then delves into the importance of inclusiveness.

    Rebuilding NICH
    The Administration of the National Institute of Culture and History, has been going through some major transition tremors since the election in November of last year. Right now NICH is looking for a new president, as well as an administrator, a head of museums, and a business development officer. We asked the Minister of State responsible for culture about the unsettled state of affairs:..

    Bliss Needs A Boost
    And while NICH is going through a major administrative overhaul, its flagship building also needs an overhaul. That’s the Bliss Centre – which, 12 years after opening is in need of major and urgent repairs. We asked Aragon about it: The Mexican government sponsored the Bliss Centre to a tune of 8 million dollars and it sprung its first leak days after opening.

    PM Can't Knock The Hustle
    Just a few minutes ago, we detailed the story of how the former Deputy Prime Minister's son was compensated 400 thousand for land, which had been purchased form the government for $2,500 dollars. And it's private land which the government knew it shouldn't have sold. This evening, we asked the Prime Minister about it, and here's what he had to say: Daniel Ortiz: "The former deputy prime minister, former minister of lands Gaspar Vega, there is a scandal…" Rt. Hon. Dean Barrow - Prime Minister: "No, no, no you see and then yo the use emotive and judgmental language. No man we're here to talk about what happened with the BNTU and the meeting today. Any questions you have about that please you can no doubt get in touch with the deputy prime minister. That's not something that I'm prepared to discuss, it's not something I've yet gotten a report from the current minister of lands. So please I can't deal with that."

    An Ocean Of Concern
    Yesterday, we told you about OCEANA's concerns with Cabinet's recent approval of seismic surveying in the waters outside of the barrier reef and atolls one kilometre buffer zone. Today, Janelle Chanona, OCEANA's country leader, visited the studio to explain why they are so concerned about the decision: Alex Courtenay: "The Cabinet has recently approved certain, surveys. A seismic survey as well as a multi beam survey, which the OCEANA organization has taken a position on?" Janelle Chanona - VP, OCEANA Belize: "So on Wednesday we were informed verbally and in person by both the PM and the Minister of Petroleum that Cabinet in its Tuesday meeting has approved conducting seismic surveys offshore Belize, East of the Belize Barrier reef, excluding the reef itself and one kilometre, and excluding Belize's 3 atolls and their one kilometre basis. They would shoot seismic essentially everywhere else.

    Channel 5

    P.M. and B.N.T.U. Meet; Some Agreements Reached
    The Prime Minister met with the Belize National Teachers Union beginning at two o’clock this afternoon. At five-forty this evening, the P.M. spoke about what happened inside; in respect of [...]

    P.M. to Finally Sign Order for 13th Senator; Makes Moves on Integrity Commission
    In respect of the Integrity Commission, PM said he waiting for a list of persons to be presented by the Belize Chamber of Commerce and Industry. But as it relates [...]

    Chamber of Commerce Pulls Out of Senate Inquiry, Plans One-Day Shutdown
    The Chamber of Commerce met on Wednesday night in Belize City; there were two motions to discuss and determine as pressure grows to accomplish a good governance agenda. We can [...]

    Chairperson of Senate Committee Will Not Vote in Inquiry
    A chair for the Senate Select Committee could not be appointed, since each of the three social partners senators declined to head the working group; they have respectively declined for [...]

    Business Senator Wants Another Crack at Senate Inquiry Motion
    After lengthy discussions, even though it was decided that the Chamber would remove itself from the senate inquiry if the committee is not reconstituted as directed and the terms of [...]

    P.U.P. Still Angry Over Senate “Railroading;” Will Support B.N.T.U. and B.C.C.I.
    The People’s United Party didn’t participate in the first meeting of the Senate Select investigation into the scandalous affairs of the immigration Department revealed in the Auditor General’s Special Audit. [...]

    One Detained for Vehicle Burning as “Shaken” DPM Recounts Incident
    Police have picked up a man in connection with the burning of Deputy Prime Minister Patrick Faber’s government assigned vehicle. The fire happened at Faber’s Lord’s Bank residence around midnight [...]

    Teachers Picket Outside B.N.T.U.’s Meeting with P.M.
    As the Prime Minister Barrow and the unions negotiated for hours inside the Biltmore, outside the hotel, teachers were out in support waiting for any word of progress.  In those [...]

    Ministry of Education Plans to Make Up Lost Class Time
    Before the meeting with the Prime Minister got underway at Biltmore, the Minister of Education, Patrick Faber was cautiously optimistic about the outcome. While he did not disclose specific details,   [...]

    P.M. Says Government Will Not Meet Chamber’s Timeframe on Demands
    Earlier we told you about the Chamber’s decision to call for a shutdown. At the press conference today, the Prime Minister said they will not meet the Chamber’s timeline, which [...]

    O.W. Teachers’ Leader’s Vehicle Smashed; Deputy Education Minister Says U.D.P. is Not Behind It
    On Wednesday, we reported to you about the arson at the home of Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Education, Patrick Faber. But early this morning, the vehicle of Otilio [...]

    Public Service Union Supports Negotiations and Disdains Industrial Action
    There will be no industrial action on the part of the Public Service Union. Beginning last week, the P.S.U. held consultations with its branch members countrywide. The Union’s executive sought [...]

    Fire Victims Stabilized, but Have Long Road to Recovery Ahead
    It has been six days since Ian and Empress Hamilton and their mother Melissa left Belize for Galveston, Texas, for an urgent series of surgeries to repair up to ninety-five [...]

    Donations Encouraged for Burn Victims’ Fund; Hamilton Family Member Headed to Texas
    It is important to note that the Shriners Hospital in Galveston, Texas is doing the surgeries and continued care for free. However, there are still costs to be paid, such [...]

    Special Envoy for Women and Children Hosts Regional Disability Conference
    Special Envoy for Women and Children Kim Simplis Barrow is hosting a regional partnership conference for children with disabilities. Simplis Barrow invited spouses of Prime Ministers in CARICOM and Presidents [...]

    B.N.T.U. Says They Will Consult Members
    The B.N.T.U. has just concluded its meeting; a number of issues were decided upon. But first we can report tonight that the strike continues on Friday and the union will [...]

    More Money for Marion Jones; Contract Signed for Multi-Purpose Sports Building
    An additional ten million dollars will be spent on the Marion Jones Sporting Complex that has been under construction for years; in fact, for at least ten years. The Government [...]

    Sports Minister Says Things Have Changed for Marion Jones
    The total amount of money already invested in the Marion Jones Sporting Complex is unknown, but it is safe to say that millions upon millions of dollars have been spent [...]

    Healthy Living Visits Urban Garden for Sustainable Farming
    Healthy Living requires healthy eating. Healthy eating means access to fresh and nutritious foods. Now we’ve heard the complaint – and in many cases it’s true – healthier can be [...]

    CTV3

    Prime Minister Meets With Teachers, But Was There Compromise?
    A second round of face to face negotiations between the PM and the Belize National Teachers Union took place today in Belize City. The meeting lasted for some three hours inside, and like the last one that led to the strike two weeks ago, today’s meeting did not end with total agreement between the parties. Our news team is still at the meeting venue in Belize City, where we understand the BNTU is holding an emergency meeting with the council of management to review the discussions with the PM. A short while ago, the PM ended his press conference where he updated the media on the positions his Government presented to the BNTU. Due to the limited time, we will only be presenting the PM’s statements on two of the issues, follow by our explanatory notes. First, the PM spoke on the Senate Select Committee which has been an issue of contention. Today, despite the BNTU’s insistence that the composition must give all parties equal representation with one representative each, the PM said he will not budge

    BCCI Calls For National Shut-Down
    A countrywide shutdown of businesses – that’s what a majority of the members of the Belize Chamber of Commerce and Industry voted for and supported in a special general meeting held on Wednesday night. Like the BNTU, the Chamber has been lobbying for specific reform measures including that a Senate Special Select Committee investigate the Auditor General’s report, the establishment of the Integrity Commission, a reconstituted Public Accounts Committee, the enforcement of the laws that call for the appointment of the 13 Senator and the signing of the United Nation’s Convention Against Corruption. The Chamber, in response to the Government’s slow commitment to those measures, decided to step up the pressure. They did so by putting two resolutions on the table for the members at their special meeting. Resolution 1 asked whether they agreed that Senator Lizarraga should only participate in a Senate Inquiry meeting if it is reconstituted as the Chamber has proposed, with the Government having only 1 representative along with the Opposition and each Social Partner.

    PUP Senator Says Senate Select Meeting Is Null and Void
    Yesterday the Senate Select Committee that will investigate the findings of the special immigration audits met for the first time. Well, the People’s United Party is pointing out that the meeting is null and void. In a release today the Opposition insists that the government is intent on railroading the establishment of an impartial and effective committee. After the Chamber’s special general meeting yesterday where the members voted for their senator not to participate in the inquiry as it currently stands, the media spoke with Opposition Senator Valerie Woods on the issues. Senator Valerie Woods – Opposition Senator: “As long as it a farce we will not participate, we have maintained that we are in solidarity with the noble effort of the BNTU, these are serious issues it is good governance issues we are not going to play around with it, if you are serious lets go with the committee of five, let ensure that there is a proper budget and lets ensure that we can all witnesses person with relevant information, that is not limited, if we are genuine and serious about good governance.”

    Windsheild of BNTU Orange Walk's President Smashed
    Who vandalized the vehicle belonging to the President of BNTU Orange Walk Branch Otilio Munoz and what was the motive? That is what Orange Walk Police are trying to figure out after Munoz discovered this morning that the windshield of his Mitsubishi Outlander which was parked on the side of the road in front of his home on George Street had been shattered. President Otilio Munoz – BNTU Orange Walk Branch: “I realize that when went out to get into my vehicle at seven o’clock in the morning, I realized that I was just burglarized, actually they took and burst the windshield of my vehicle so I had to contact the police and inform them as to what has happen and that is actually what transpired.”

    Is The Belize Workers Union Broke?
    Is the Belize Workers Union, the union that represents BSI workers bankrupt? According to the UDP Guardian Newspaper it is. According to the newspaper, at this point in time the BWU has a total of $1,394 in its accounts at the Belize Bank which is three accounts: the General account, the Strike Fund and an Employees Savings Account. The newspaper further states that the union is operating on an overdraft facility of $25,000, $24,281.37 of which has already been spent which only leaves an available $718.63 for the union to operate on. The Guardian reports that BWU is broke because of the issuance of a number of checks between four members of the executive from April to the month of October.

    LOVE FM

    BIOFIN Looks at Cost of Protecting the Chiquibul
    The world is looking at conservation and protection of the environment as the solution to many issues that ail the world including climate change, economics and sustainable development. BIOFIN is the acronym for Biodiversity Finance Initiative and was launched by the United Nations Development Fund in October 2012 with an objective to address the financial […]

    PUP Says GOB is Hijacking Senate Investigation
    In the political arena, the main opposition party, PUP has issued a release condemning what they have cited as an attempt by the Government of Belize to railroad the selection of an impartial and effective Senate Select Committee. The release says that the Government is hijacking the investigation and that it is clear that the […]

    PSU Not Ready for Industrial Action
    The charge for good governance led by the Belize National Teachers’ Union has created divisions in various sectors as some are in support of the teachers and some are not. While the Public Service Union had agreed in supporting the BNTU, there has been some silence in the past weeks from that union up until […]

    Chamber Takes Its Motions to a Vote at Special General Meeting
    The private sector has voted for a national shutdown of all businesses if the Government of Belize does not adhere to several demands in regards to good governance. A Special General Meeting was held last night which saw the participation of one hundred and twenty four members of the Belize Chamber of Commerce and Industry, […]

    Senator Woods on Boycotting of Senate Inquiry
    Yesterday the first Senate Special Select Committee was held and the first business of the day was to appoint a Chairperson to head the committee but that did not happen. Absent from the meeting was a senator representing the Opposition. In fact, the People’s United Party has taken the stance that it will not participate […]

    Hulse Takes Good Governance Issues to the Police
    Yesterday at the police graduation service for Squad #93, Minister of Home Affairs, Godwin Hulse delivered a lengthy address that not only focused on the expectations of the recent graduates and where he sees the Belize Police Department heading but he also incorporated the current issues of good governance that is being demanded by the […]

    Progress at Marion Jones Sports Complex
    The Ministry of Youth, Sports and Culture signed a contract for the lighting of the Marion Jones Sporting Complex. Four light posts will be installed at the sporting complex. In addition to this project, the Ministry also unveiled the design of the indoor basketball and volleyball facility that will be constructed. Project Coordinator for United […]

    Anglicans Prepare for Synod 2017
    Anglican churches around the country are preparing for their upcoming sessions of the Synod slated to begin on Friday, October 14. This is an event that happens every two years with the church heads coming together to look at both internal and external exercises with an objective to effectively implement them. Love News spoke with […]

    The Guardian

    Deputy Prime Minister’s vehicle set ablaze
    Deputy Prime Minister Patrick Faber and his young sons were not physically harmed on Tuesday night when a hired hand jumped his fence and set his vehicle on fire in the middle of the night, but one has to believe that it was a tough psychological blow for the young leader when he had to rush his infant boys out of bed in order to escape a ferocious fire that was reaching for their roof. He, nor anyone associated with the administration, has laid blame on the Belize National Teachers Union and there is almost no chance in hell that any member of the BNTU was involved in such a sinister plot. However, with the climate of animosity they have fostered, the venom they have spewed at the Minister of Education for years, the thugs they have encouraged to march at their side and speak at their rallies – they might as well had scratched the match with their own hands. Belize is a young country but we have seen protests, strikes and riots throughout our brief history. The level of violence in this strike of the BNTU pales in comparison to that of 2005 and the Heads of Agreement. However, the kind of hatred being expressed (personal hatred) is something we have never seen before.

    BSI’s Belize Workers Union is bankrupt! - Union leaders mismanage members’ contributions
    As of Wednesday morning, the Belize Workers Union, representing the BSI workers, has a total of $1,394 dollars in its accounts at the Belize Bank. The union has three active accounts: the General account that has $718.63 in it, the Strike Fund that has $172.61 in it and an Employees Savings Account which has $502.76 in it. The union is operating on an overdraft facility of $25,000, $24,281.37 of which has already been spent leaving behind the $718.63 available which the union can operate on. But a copy of the balance on the overdraft facility which we have seen indicates that there is $624 under an uncleared effects line item which could mean that there is another check or a deposit to that amount which has not been credited or debited to the General account. In simple terms, the union is bankrupt. But how did it come to this? The Guardian Newspaper has obtained documents which suggest a serial level of bleeding of the union’s accounts. This took place through the issuing of checks between the President, Ramiro Gongora; the Treasurer Gilberto Castillo, the Secretary Malco Cabrera and a trustee Hector Castillo.

    Chamber calls Lizarraga off Senate inquiry
    The Chamber of Commerce met on Wednesday night during which a vote was taken to have Markhelm Lizarraga not participate in the Senate Special Select committee to investigate irregularities at the Immigration and Nationality departments. This comes after the committee officially had its meeting on Wednesday in which the work of the commission was outlined (see story above) The Chamber also voted to have a one day shutdown of businesses. The date for the shutdown has not yet been announced.

    Four man picket by concerned parents
    On Tuesday of this week Guardian’s Editor Alfonso Noble took the conscious decision to picket the Belize City office of the BNTU. Alfonso who is the father of three teenagers, two of whom are in High school, while the other is in Junior College, has been saying from last week that he would be doing what he did on Tuesday . According to Alfonso he was frustrated that his children were not at school being taught by their teachers as they should be on a regular school day. He mentioned to us and the entire Wave Radio and TV audience that he was prepared to picket even if it meant he had to walk the walk all by himself. Alfonso stated that although he and his wife were able to ensure that their children just don’t sit idle around the house he would prefer to have them in school.

    Great advocate of Belize bids farewell
    In a reception hosted by Taiwan Ambassador, His Excellency Benjamin Ho at the Ramada Princess Hotel last Friday, 7th September, His Excellency, Sir Colville Young, Governor General in his congratulatory remarks to Taiwan’s 105th anniversary national day epitomized the Republic of China on Taiwan’s strenuous efforts to gain economic and democratic development despite the adverse political setbacks resulting from the defeat out of its civil war and its retreat to Taiwan. The wisdom of Taiwan in launching peaceful initiatives with Mainland China has achieved remarkable peace dividends with the signing of an Economic Cooperation Framework Agreement and twenty more cooperation agreements. The governor general lauded Taiwan’s willingness to share its development experience with like-minded countries by providing necessary financial and expertise assistance as a constructive member and stakeholder of the international community. He toasted to wish Taiwan’s every continued success in its national development and international involvement.

    Burnt children flown out for medical treatment
    For the past 5 days, 4 year old Ian Sambula-Carr and his sister, 8 year old Empress Hamilton, 2 of the burn victims from that tragic Aloe Vera Street fire, are in Galveston, Texas getting medical treatment. The doctors at the Shriners Hospital are trying to ensure that their lives aren’t lost the very same tragic way that their cousin, 11 year-old Aaron Gabourel’s was. After spending 2 days at the Karl Heusner Memorial Hospital, where the doctors saved their lives, the kids caught the attention of Yvette Burke, who runs the Burn Injury Mercy Fund. The fund’s finances are almost depleted, but she dug deep into her own financial reserves to qualify for credit so that an air ambulance could be chartered to fly them out of Belize. The doctors at Shriners Burns Hospital for Children also made contact having seen their case file, and they have decided that these two Belize City children are cases that they will be happy to take on.

    Taxi moratorium lifted in Belize City
    The moratorium on taxi license plates in Belize City has been lifted and those interested in entering the taxi industry are now free to do so, with the permission of a taxi union that is. Mayor Darrell Bradley and Councilor Bernard Pitts made the announcement at the Battlefield Park on Wednesday, October 12, with representatives of each city taxi association in attendance. Mayor Bradley’s administration instituted a strict moratorium on the issuance of taxi license plates shortly after he was elected in 2012. This was done after consultations with stakeholders over the concern that the city had an excess of taxi operators and the industry needed to be streamlined. This was largely supported by the existing taxi operators because it meant no new competition. However, individuals found a way to circumvent the moratorium. They applied for licenses in the villages, towns and national transport department then operated in the city. This really frustrated the city operators and they forwarded that concern to City Hall.

    Coast Guard receives new building courtesy US State Department
    The Belize Coast Guard is currently in receipt of a brand new maintenance facility on the compound of their Belize City headquarters. It costs 4.46 million Belizean dollars, and it is a donation from the United States Government through the United Station Southern Command. The work began in July 2014, and it was completed in September 2016. With this facility, the Coast Guard gets housing for 100 new coast guard staff. It also provides office spaces for the fleet commander and the sector commanders for Coast Guard Stationed in Belize City. It is multi-purposed, and it also provides the Coast Guard state-of-art maintenance capability to conduct repairs and preservation of vital equipment, such as the Boston Whalers and other marine craft that the organization has in its care. The idea is to preserve these costly assets.

    Belize’s Governor General tours Benque
    Belize’s Governor General Sir. Colville Young made a tour of the friendly Town of Benque Viejo del Carmen on Tuesday of this week. During his tour the Governor General visited significant areas within Benque and was also able to meet its prominent community members. At the entrance of Benque on Tuesday morning, he was greeted by the Mayor of Benque, Heraldo Ramcharan Junior and students from the Hills of Promise Seventh Day Adventist Primary School as well as the Mount Carmel High School. The Governor General then visited the Benque House of Culture where he was entertained by ‘Los Hijos del West’ Marimba Group. After his visit at the House of Culture, Sir. Colville Young also visited the Centennial Park and the Benque Archaeological Reserve; two areas where gargantuan efforts have been made to beautify Benque.

    Government condemns torching of the Deputy Prime Minister’s vehicle
    The Government strongly condemns the actions of those persons who put the lives of the Deputy Prime Minister Hon. Patrick Faber and his two young children in danger by illegally entering his yard and setting his vehicle on fire. It is welcomed news that no one was injured in this cowardly and despicable act. The current climate created by the teachers’ strike is no excuse for this lawless behavior and Government calls on the mastermind and other persons involved in inciting violence to stop and allow the peaceful democratic process to proceed.

    Appointment of New Governor of the Central Bank of Belize
    Governor General, Sir Colville Young, signed a writ of appointment naming Ambassador A. Joy Grant as Governor of the Central Bank of Belize, with effect from 1 October 2016. Ambassador Grant succeeds Mr. Glenford Ysaguirre who held the position since 2008. She assumes her Central Bank responsibilities immediately following her previous position as Director of the Financial Intelligence Unit. Previously, Governor Grant served as Minister of the Energy, Science & Technology, and Public Utilities Ministry from 2012 to 2015. Governor Grant has served her country in the diplomatic corps as Deputy Head of Mission in Washington D.C., and as Ambassador stationed in Brussels and being accredited to five countries, the European Commission, and the World Trade Organization.

    Lights and indoor facility for Marion Jones Sporting Complex
    The Ministry of Youth, Sports and Culture has announced the signing of the contract for the lighting of the Marion Jones Sporting Complex project. The signing of the contract is between United Nations Office on Projects (UNOPs) and Maheias Construction for the installation of FFB- standard lights on the field of the Marion Jones Sporting Complex. This signing takes place at 10 a.m. Thursday, October 13th at the Marion Jones Complex. In addition, the Ministry of Sports will reveal the design of the indoor basketball and volleyball facility that will be constructed next to the Marion Jones Grandstand. Bids will go out for that contract shortly and construction is expected to begin by early January, during the dry season.

    PM to meet BNTU
    On Tuesday October 11, the Prime Minister, Rt. Hon. Dean Barrow once again called on the Belize National Teacher's Union to return to the negotiating table. In it he stated that "I first wish to again clarify the basis of my writing to invite the NTUCB to meet with me to finalize a joint position on the good governance agenda. This was done only after I was made aware of the NTUCB position that, as the umbrella organization to which the BNTU belongs, NTUCB is the proper bargaining agent to conclude this matter with Government." he continues stating that he will first want to meet with the BNTU then "the NTUCB is in the process of scheduling their meeting (of which you are also to be a part) with me." The letter concludes by setting Thursday October 13th at 2p.m at the Biltmore as the date time and place when the meeting could take place.

    Remember the PUP’s Corruption
    The PUP of late have become accustomed to using the word CORRUPTION when speaking of the UDP government under Prime Minister Rt. Hon Dean Oliver Barrow. That is an accusation which they have no substance to back up those accusations with. Unlike when they were in office during 1998 to 2008. That period may very well go down as the most CORRUPT ERA in Belize's Political History. Every so often we at this newspaper find it very necessary to remind Belizeans of some of those things that has caused the PUP to have been losing elections since October 2003 to present. Below is a list of things that wreaks of corruption. We hope that this list will also help to loosen the PUP Leader's tongue and allow him to call the names of those PUPs he said stole millions during those years. • Sold the Port! • Sold the Airport! • Sold BEL! • Sold BTL, THREE TIMES! • Sold WASA! • Sold the V.O.A. compound to a PUP area rep. He used a DFC loan (which was later written off). The same compound was later sold to a Canadian for millions!

    The misguided attack on Senator Rocke
    It is unfortunate that once someone does not act in accordance with or in the expectation of an interest group, that person becomes the target of group hate. In my opinion the composition of the Senate Committee as it stands now is not important. The important thing is that the investigation is carried out. As it stands there are at least 4 none government representatives there to ensure that a just and fair investigation takes place. Senator Rocke has explained that he has voted in accordance with the wishes of the organization he represents. He has invited the media to question the leaders of his organization to see if he acted in defiance of their wishes. Instead of the media doing so, they chose to vilify him.

    Norman Charles Rodriguez appointed magistrate
    Retired teacher Norman Charles Rodriguez, 46, is now serving his country as a Magistrate of the Court. Rodriguez was a teacher at Excelsior High School from 1992-2005. He retired early to care for his ailing father, Porfilio Rodriguez Sr., until his death in 2006. After losing his father, Rodriguez became Chairman of the National Anti Crime Association of Belize. In 2007, he became the Administrative Officer in the office of the Mayor of Belize City, Zenaida Moya. There he served as Protocol Officer while pursuing a law degree. On October 12, 2012, Rodriguez received his LLB in Guyana and transferred from Mayor Moya’s office to the Municipal Court as a prosecutor/legal assistant. He served until 2014 when he was offered a space to study law at the Norman Manley Law School in Jamaica. On September 2, 2016, Rodriguez received his Legal Education Certificate (LEC) from the Norman Manley Law School where he also received a certificate of Good Conduct.

    Ruth, Oh Ruth!
    On Friday October 7th, the BNTU’s Corozal Branch Secretary, one Ruth Shoman appeared on the evening news and made the following proclamation, “It was shameful, it was a sad moment in history for Minister Elrington to go publicly and state that we lack the wisdom, the ability and the competence to tackle these issues. It was shameful and especially knowing that his sister and his wife were once teachers; it speaks volumes to his character. So today on behalf of all the teachers in this country we are demanding a public apology and we will not stop.” Now that seems like a reasonable request, demand an apology if you feel slighted. But when we look at the bearer of the message we understand why Minister Elrington would say what he said. You see Ruth Shoman was not born Ruth Shoman, she was born Ruth Yadira Guerra in Corozal Town. That in and of itself says nothing, a good looking Corozal lady/teacher requesting an apology, however when you look a little further into this young lady’s past, she should be the last one to cast the proverbial stone.

    Special Envoy hosts regional conference on children with disabilities
    Belize’s Special Envoy for Women and Children, Kim Simplis Barrow, is collaborating with UNICEF to host a two-day conference under the theme “Breaking Barriers for an Inclusive Society and Empowerment for Children with Disabilities” on Thursday, October 13, and Friday, October 14. According to the Office of the Special Envoy, the conference is “aimed at highlighting issues affecting children with disabilities, exchanging best practices on a regional level and re-committing to the Convention of the Rights of Persons with Disabilities”. There are several alarming factors that influence UNICEF and the Special Envoy’s sense of urgency in pushing for an inclusive society. The Special Envoy points to the facts that 36 per cent of children aged 2 to 9 are at risk of having one or more disabilities: physical, auditory, visual or learning. Children with disabilities are one of the most marginalized and excluded groups in society. They face discrimination “in the form of negative attitudes, lack of adequate policies and legislation; they are effectively barred from realizing their rights to healthcare, education, and even survival”.

    Do teachers know why they are on strike?
    On Friday evening we spent about an hour on a commuter bus with a friend who is a Public Officer. We were engaged in a conversation about the BNTU strike. After about five minutes we were joined by two female teachers. We don't know what political inclination any of the three ladies have but we must say that the conversation was lively. Our friend the Public Officer, appeared to be a very intelligent and informed young lady. The same cannot be said about any of the two teachers, who appeared to us as being women in their mid to late thirties. The Public Officer we know is older and is a few years away from retirement, because she had indicated that to us earlier in the conversation before we were joined by the teachers. These teachers appeared to not have a clue as to why they were on strike, more than to say corruption and raise. When we asked them to expound on the corruption issue all they could tell us was that it was their union president that was dealing with that.

    Record numbers in Tourism
    Overnight tourism is where the real money is generated in the tourism industry and, fortunately for our services dependent economy, record number of tourists continues to visit Belize for an extended period of time. According to the Belize Tourism Board, the industry has been experiencing record breaking increases in overnight arrivals every month since June of 2015. That is fifteen (15) consecutive months of record breaking overnight tourist arrivals. From June 2015 to September 2016, the Tourism Industry has been experiencing record breaking double digit percentage increases in overnight arrivals every month with the exception of August 2016 which recorded an increase of 8.3 percent. Through the first nine months of this calendar year, 293,622 overnight arrivals, a 16.4% increase over the same nine months of 2015, which had 252,329 overnight arrivals. September, which is in the middle of the low season, saw the highest percentage increase in arrivals this year at 26.9 percent. Once again, the month of March saw the greatest number of overnight tourist arrivals with 43,063.

    TRANSPARENCY; ACCOUNTABILITY; GOOD GOVERNANCE
    TRANSPARENCY; ACCOUNTABILITY; GOOD GOVERNANCE, have all become the buzz words hurtling from all corners by some who scarcely understand their meaning, much less their importance. They have become blanket terms used to disguise a joint movement by organizations with ulterior motives. Based on their reckless use on social media it is obviously clear that even some members of the BNTU have major problems aligning the use of these words properly. There is an apparent dispute between the BNTU and the Government of Belize. The dispute was triggered by a proposal by GOB to request a deferral of a 3% increase promised to teachers, after GOB was confronted with damages caused by hurricane Earl. The GOB proposal on its face alone seemed rather harmless. At the very least one could not have believed it would have triggered a reaction from BNTU, forcing an all out strike, endangering the education of students. This is so especially in light of the fact that GOB has met their obligation with regards to wage increases to the Public Servants for the previous two years. From the position of GOB, there has always been goodfaith.

    Inmate busted with weed
    Belize Central Prison inmate in the remand section, Oswald Twist Arnold, 18, is in more trouble after he was busted with weed inside the prison on Monday, October 3. Arnold is a Roaring Creek resident on remand for attempted murder. Allegations being made against him by prison officials is that a search was conducted of his cell on Monday and some green leafy like substance was found inside his tennis shoe. Hattieville Police were called in to investigate the matter and officer Kenrick Pena arrested and charged Oswald Twist Arnold for drug trafficking with intent to supply another person for persons. The weed was weighed and amounted to 42 grams.

    Brother kills brother in Orange Walk
    The younger brother of Ruben Cain, a 41 year-old resident of Orange Walk, was expected to be charged a few days ago for his murder. The police believe that he stabbed Cain to death after they had a sibling quarrel and a fight. His family from the Louisiana area of the Town, continue to be distressed over what happened on Wednesday October 5, at around 3:45 p.m. The other relatives and friends have refused to talk to the press, but eyewitnesses say that the two brothers had some kind of disagreement. That argument escalated to a fight, and it is believed that sometime during the incident, the young brother, who has not yet been identified by police, pulled a knife. He stabbed Ruben Cain with it in the chest, which caused him to collapse in the yard, where he was bleeding out. The police responded very quickly, and they found Ruben Cain bleeding. They tried to rush him to the Northern Regional Hospital, but when they arrived it was too late.

    Artisan shot in Western Belize
    An internationally known artisan Luis Alberto Camal was buried near his home village of San Jose Succotz on Friday, surrounded by family and friends. A just released statement from the Benque House of Culture expresses its sincere condolences to the Camal Family with the loss of Kent, as he was affectionately known, a first class Artisan of San Jose Succotz. The fine work of Luis Camal had been showcased in various events and activities in Belize, especially at the annual Street Art Festival and the Belize Tourist Board Village Exposition. Internationally Camal’s masterpieces had also entered the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization UNESCO Arts & Craft Worldwide Showcase in Paris, France in 2013. But tragically, 45 year old Luis Camal was shot in the area of Hills of Promise near Benque last Wednesday night in front of his wife and teenaged daughter. Camal was on his way home at about 7:40 pm when he was approached by two persons.

    Family members find decomposing body of Ashley Clarke in Belmopan
    In Belmopan, Police have in custody two persons and are now looking for a third who may be able to assist in their investigation into the death of Ashley Clarke, whose body was reportedly found on Saturday at mid-day. The 23 year old young man was with a group of other young people socializing last Friday night in Belmopan when he was picked up by another young man on motorcycle. He was to have been taken to purchase alcoholic beverages for the group to continue drinking. Instead both Clarke and the other young man identified as OV ended up at La Cabana bar where Clarke was involved in an altercation. OV reported to Clarke's mother that Ashley had punched someone to the mouth and ran away after doing so.

    Teenage girl charged with drug trafficking
    Kristy Elizabeth Dawson, 18, is lucky to not be in jail or on the hook for $10,000 after she admitted to being a drug peddler before Magistrate Carlon Mendoza on Friday, October 7. Allegations being made against her by police is that at about 4 p.m. on Thursday, October 6, police found her on Kelly Street with 30.2 grams of weed in a white purse. As a result, Dawson was taken into custody to be charged. While in police custody, Dawson told WPC #1824 Vashtey Alarcont, “I sell weed feh wah lady.” This confession led police to charge her with drug trafficking instead of the lesser charge of drug possession, which the quantity actually warrants.

    Homeless man stabbed to death in Cayo
    San Ignacio Police continue their investigation into the sudden death of a homeless person in San Ignacio Town. Benjamin Gomez was found on Saturday morning of this past weekend lying motionless at his usual place of abode; a bus stop at the corner of Joseph Andrews Drive and the Benque Viejo Road. He was found in a lateral position with multiple stab wounds to the upper body. Benjamin Gomez was taken to the Western Regional Hospital where it awaits a post mortem examination.

    Six Left to Stand Trial for ABou Nehra Home Invasion
    Of the 18 people initially charged in connection with the December 2015 home invasion at the house of Diplomat Sarkis Abou Nehra in Burrell Boom Village, only six are left to face trial. This is after the prosecutor in the case withdraw charges against many of the accused due to lack of evidence. Disclosure was provided to the accused just over two weeks ago and there was no evidence linking most of the accused to crimes for which they were charged. There were several attorneys inside the courtroom of Chief Magistrate Anne Marie Smith on Wednesday, October 12, waiting to find out if the prosecution will proceed with trial against their client or not. Attorneys present included Dickie Bradley, Ivy Pitts, Godwin Haylock and Alifah Elrington Hyde. The 18 individuals were facing charges including aggravated burglary, conspiracy to commit burglary, rape, conspiracy to commit aggravated burglary, abetment to aggravated burglary, theft and handling stolen goods.

    Belmopan Bandits and FC Belize at top of Premier League standings
    The Premier League of Belize 2016 Opening Season Tournament continued over the last weekend with 4 games on the schedule. On Saturday 9th October, 2016, at the MCC Grounds in Belize, FC Belize blanked the Freedom Fighters by the score of 2-0 to gain a share in the lead of the Opening Season Tournament. The first goal of the game was scored by Jorge Aleman in the 18th minute of play to give his team a 1-0 lead. The lead was further extended when Herbert Baptist scored his team 2nd goal of the game in the 45th minute of play for the white-wash win. The competition then continued on Sunday 10th October, 2016, with three games. At the MCC Grounds in Belize City, the Belize Defence Force and the Belmopan Bandits played to a 1-1 draw. The Belmopan Bandits was the first to score when Jerome James scored his team’s goal in the 29th minute of play to give it a temporary 1-0 lead. However, the Belize Defence Force made it onto the scoreboard when Vallan Symms scored his team’s equalising goal in the 60th minute of play via a penalty kick to tie the score at 1-1.

    Jumanji wins again in Sugar City Hoops competition
    The Sugar City Hoops Basketball competition continued on Friday 7th October and on Saturday 8th October, 2016, respectively in Orange Walk Town. On Friday 7th October at the East Sports Centre in the U-17 competition, Technical High School won over Muffles Bobcats by the score of 54-40. The top scorers for Technical High School were Clinton Shaw with 25 points, 3 rebounds, 5 steals, 3 assists and 1 block; Vijay Young with 14 points, 7 rebounds, 2 steals and 1 assist and David Smith with 5 points, 2 steals and 1 assist. For the Muffles Bobcats, the top scorers were Kristian Cabrera with 15 points, 13 rebounds, 2 steals, 1 assist and 1 block; CJ Vasquez with 10 points, 7 rebounds, 4 assists and 2 steals and Dickerson Li with 6 points, 12 rebounds, 1 assist and 1 steal.

    Belize to host XIII Central American U-22 Female Softball championship
    The Belize Softball Federation will be hosting the XIII Central American U-22 female softball championship from November 4-6, 2016, at Rogers Stadium. The Central American U-22 championship will feature the national teams from Costa Rica, El Salvador, Nicaragua, Panama and the host country Belize. El Salvador is the defending Central American U-22 champions. The championship will commence on Friday 4th November at 8:30 am and will conclude on Sunday 6th November, 2016. The official opening ceremony is scheduled for 6:30 pm at Rogers Stadium on Friday 4th November, 2016. The Tournament Director will be Jude Lizama 1st Vice President of the Belize Softball Federation while the Chief Umpire will be Joel Westby. The Presidents of the Central American countries that will be participating in the championship will form the Disciplinary Committee.

    Charles Solis Memorial Softball Tournament to take place this Sunday
    The Belize Softball Federation informs the softball community and the general public that the VII Annual Charles Solis Memorial Invitational Tournament will take place this Sunday 16th October, 2016, at Rogers Stadium commencing at 8:30 am. The Memorial Tournament which was scheduled for early August had to be postponed because of the weather and was again last Sunday postponed because of weather conditions. The teams that will participate in the Single Elimination Format Tourney will include Unitedville Rebels United (defending Charles Solis Memorial Champions), Roaring Creek Grace Kennedy, Belize Bank Bulldogs, Independence PALS, Belmopan Bandits and Flowers Bank Easy Does It.

    Mites
    Here in OW, most cable channels between 50 and 59 are PUP channels. No lie, if you click on any of these ten channels, you will see a deep, dark cavern spewing forth PUP recyclables, and if this was not enough, they went ahead and put Patrick Jones on channel 61. Thank God he is only an independent PUP, though, and not those Die-hards like Hyde and El Loco, Wade. The PUP these days are like mites; they are all over the place, even in the bowels of the catholic arch-diocese. We even heard foolishness coming from the cavern of a youth at the teacher’s rally wanting the teachers to crown him prime minister. On a serious note, though, the BNTU has been bloated up so big that they are demanding apologies left right and center. Anyone who does not praise them are disrespectful. Personally, I will genuflect to no false prophet who cloaks their agenda behind the flag of patriotism. Another spokesperson has reared in Corozal by the name of Babe Ruth. More on her later. PUP mites, that’s what I call them.

    Breaking Belize NewsPJ

    Teenager injured in traffic accident in Santa Elena
    A teenager from the Hillview area in Santa Elena was injured in a traffic accident that occurred just after 8 p.m. near La Loma Luz in Santa Elena. A BBOC bus that was traveling towards San Ignacio collided with a motorcycle heading in the […]

    BNTU will continue to strike!
    The Belize National Teachers Union (BNTU) decided to finish off the week with strike action, after meeting with Prime Minister Dean Barrow today. BNTU President Luke Palacio explained at the meeting that while the Prime Minister made the commitment to sign the commencement order […]

    PM Barrow and BNTU meet; BNTU says strike continues
    PM Barrow announced at his press conference this evening following his meeting with the Belize National Teachers’ Union (BNTU) that he will sign the process to commence the 13th Senator SI Constitutional Amendment by next week Thursday but it will come into effect until three months […]

    Estimate of economic impact of the BNTU Strike
    Today is the 8th day of the BNTU strike action to STAND FOR BELIZE, demanding actions by the Government of Belize to curb corruption and to deliver good governance. This strike can be expected to have a similar effect on the economy as the […]

    Fire arm and ammo found in abandoned lot in Belize City
    Police in Belize City are reporting that this afternoon around 1:30, members of the Southside Strike Team conducted a search on an abandoned lot on Lake View Street which led to the discovery of a black plastic bag containing a chrome raven arms brand […]

    Belize Chamber of Commerce votes for good governance
    The Belize Chamber of Commerce and Industry (BCCI) has issued a press release indicating that last night at a Special General Meeting the BCCI members voted on two resolutions. According to the BCCI release, the two resolutions are: Resolution 1: that Senator Lizarraga shall […]

    Queen’s Scout Aidian Flowers to represent Belize in Hungary
    Queen’s Scout Aidian Flowers, a member of the 27th Santa Elena Jaguars Scout Group will be representing Belize at the World Scout Seminar on Messengers of Peace (MOP) in Budapest, Hungary. The seminar is organized by The World Organization of the Scout Movement (WOSM) […]

    Who smashed the windshield of BNTU’s OW President?
    This morning around 3, Otilio Munoz, the Orange Walk BNTU Branch President woke up to find the windshield of his 2007 Mitsubishi smashed. According to reports, Munoz has filed a report to police and the authorities are investigating the matter. This incident comes after […]

    Contract signed for installation of FIFA standard lights at Marion Jones Sporting Complex
    The Minister responsible for Sports, Elodio Aragon has announced that a contract has been signed between the UNOPs (United Nations Office for Projects) and the Maheia Constuction Group for the installation of FIFA standards lights at the Marion Jones Sporting Complex. Aragon said in […]

    PM Barrow to meet with BNTU president today
    BNTU president, Luke Palacio and Prime Minister Dean Barrow are meeting this afternoon at the Biltmore Hotel in Belize City. Teachers assembled at Brodies parking lot and were moving in single file to Biltmore. The PM has announced that there will be a press […]

    NEMO Minister hands over houses to Hurricane Earl victims in Stann Creek
    Yesterday, Minister of State for National Emergency Management, Hon. Edmond Castro was in the Stann Creek District handing over houses to victims of Hurricane Earl. The Minister was accompanied by Area Representative for Dangriga, Hon. Frank “Papa” Mena and NEMO Dangriga Coordinator, Victor […]

    Road traffic accident in Cayo
    Reports reaching our newsroom are that a road traffic accident occurred around 7 this morning on the George Price Highway near Benque Viejo Del Carmen. According to reports, the incident involved an SUV and a brown pick up truck. The pick up truck flipped […]

    Blogs

    Belize Cave Tubing Guide
    What To Know About Belize Cave Tubing: Belize is believed to be home to over 900 Maya sites in total over the more than eight thousand square miles of Earth area we call home. As you could imagine that is a lot to excavate, luckily not all these “sites” are large ruined/abandoned temples. Quite a number of these sites includes village remains and caves. Belize Cave tubing adventures take you through some of these very subterranean that were once traversed by the Mayan denizens of these parts. For those of you wondering who or why anyone would float through an old cave for fun, let us share these awesome facts with you: Over a thousand years ago the last local Mayan inhabitant left one of the caves after what would be the last ritual ever performed in one. After them, these sites became abandoned and forgotten, deemed too dangerous for day to day life and too dark to ever be comfortable for human eyes. Our Mayan ancestors believed the caves to be entrances to Xibalba; their underworld, the place of fear and the gods of death. It’s difficult to ascertain exactly how old these formations could each be or when the first use of them was. Many of the artifacts left in them have since become calcified, encased in limestone sediments and fused with the cave-scape around them. Many. if not all the artifacts found therein are permanently fixed to their resting place. It is also difficult to determine whether the caves with no artifacts were used at all or not or for different purposes; the cave that you tube through could have at one point been a very integral part of a community’s belief system!

    Hiking in Belize
    With more than 30% of its territory set aside for nature reserves and national parks, it’s no wonder that Belize is a popular hiking destination. Whether you prefer to wend your way up steep inclines to marvel at mountain panoramas, make your way through lush jungles, see ocean birds and spectacular ocean vistas, or witness colorful tropical birds and exotic animals like jaguars, monkeys, and tapirs, there is a trail suitable for every hiker in Belize. Some of the top hiking destinations in Belize include: Shipstern Wildlife Nature Reserve – Measuring more than 32 square miles in size, the reserve is a mix of pristine forest, wetlands, and savanna. The reserve has several marked trails, a special botanical trail, a butterfly aviary to visit, and a natural history museum. Rio Bravo Conservation Area – This lovely area is home to a lush tropical rainforest that is the natural habitat of more than 200 species of trees. Other denizens of the rainforest include jaguars, howler monkeys, deer, and more than 400 species of birds. Half Moon Caye Natural Monument – In Belize, islands are known as “cayes”, and this protected natural area has hiking trail that combine spectacular views of the Caribbean and more than 90 species of birds, including species like the frigate bird and the Red-footed Booby.

    Art, Happiness and a Bit of Splashing Around
    I recently came across a quote that reads, “Art is you being free of all of the wold’s heaviness” and I could not agree more with its unknown author. Imagine a place where you can relax, be yourself, put some colors together, create your own masterpiece and do it all with great company. I know a place and I love the company. I absolutely adore this woman and could tell stories about her all day. She is not funny, she is hilarious, kind hearted and hard working. I couldn’t be more proud of her latest venture. Truly Sanpedrana, there are few locals who do not know Melody Sanchez Wolfe. From helping feed the less fortunate in town, to organizing volunteer work on the island, she’s put in her fair share of community service and yet found the time to become a successful business woman. Her Art Gallery, Belizean Melody, just announced it’s new and much improved location to the north side of the island. After months of juggling hospital visits and work, Dorian and I were way past due for a relaxation session. We remembered that we had a couple unfinished art pieces at Melody’s gallery and decided to make an evening of it.

    The Day of the Dead
    Although, the Day of the Dead (also known as el Dia de los Muertos and Los Finados) is most prominently celebrated in Mexico in November, it is also very popular in many villages and towns in Belize. This is due to the fact that the tradition of celebrating the life and death of lost loved ones dates back to the ancient Maya, an indigenous culture of Belize and Central America. However, interestingly enough, this celebration is also linked to Catholicism, the primary religion that was enforced by the Europeans when they colonized the Americas. Understanding that, it is not a coincidence that the Day of the Dead is celebrated at the beginning of November with All Saints Day and All Souls Day. On the Day of the Dead, Maya and Mestizo communities across Belize unanimously get together to commemorate the life and death of their ancestors. This is done at people’s homes by decorating small tables as alters and including water, flowers, fruits, candles and portraits of their deceased. Families also make sure to have delicious traditional Belizean foods such as tamales, Bollos, Caldo de Gallina local, Chirmole and Ishpasha Atole. As for favorite alcoholic drinks, rum and tequila seem to be the popular choices. On All Souls Day, the Catholic Church holds a mass where everyone goes to pray for their loved ones who have passed away. Following the mass, a street procession takes place which leads to the local cemetery. Individuals carry with them wreaths, candles and food, which are later placed on the graves. The tombs are not only adorned but the family members pray and thank their dead relatives for being a part of their lives and wish them the best in the afterlife. Also common is the sharing of good memories and fun stories.

    Make Belize your next vacation destination
    As a born and raised Belizean, there is nothing more I love than being a tourist in my own country. Part of the fun of playing tourist in my own country is that I get to explore new places and create wonderful memories. I can confidently say that Belize has endless destinations and spectacular attractions that will make your vacation an amazing adventure. Why should you make Belize your next vacation destination? Well, why not. Belize is a place like no other. Let’s take a look into why you should make Belize your next vacation destination! Take a journey into the heart of the ancient Mayan civilization. Belize is filled with Mayan Ruins. The Mayan civilization left its permanent mark in our country in the form of temples, agriculture and artifacts. Some of the famous Mayan sites you can visit are Lamanai, Cahal Pech, Altun Ha, Caracol and Xunantunich.

    International Sourcesizz

    Florida's manatees loved to death in Time Lapse Video
    Conservation photographer Cristina Mittermeier points out that the "love" we have for manatees is also a source of trouble for the species. The animals come to Crystal River Springs as a refuge during the winter. It is a place for them to rest and conserve energy in warm waters. But with so little protection from the many people pressing in on them -- including touching, riding, and otherwise harassing them, not to mention the injuries they sustain from boat propellers slicing into them as they sit just below the water's surface -- our desire to be near them is preventing them from getting that much needed rest. Here, in a timelapse video made by Mittermeier and fellow photographer Neil Ever Osborne, you can see just how much interaction the manatees are forced to deal with all day, every day. You'll even see a manatee stampede, which happens when a sudden loud noise onshore scares them. Mittermeier states that this happens several times a day. The video reveals just how little space manatees get for themselves, and how much more protection we need to be offering these animals who are, we cannot forget, members of an endangered species.

    Caribbean countries share plans to adapt to climate change at Grenada meeting
    Representatives from 11 Caribbean countries and development agency partners are meeting in Grenada’s capital of St George’s this week to discuss strategies to prepare for the impact of climate change. Grenada held the final consultation for its National Adaptation Plan (NAP) on Tuesday and will now host peers from the region to share lessons from its experience through a two-day regional workshop. “Here in Grenada, we don’t have to look far for to see the impacts of climate change. We experience them every day,” said Senator Simon Stiell, minister of state with responsibility for the environment. “Grenada’s National Adaptation Plan process will help protect against the potentially devastating effects of extreme weather like Hurricane Ivan in 2004,” said Kevin Andall, permanent secretary with responsibility for human resource development and the environment. “We look forward to sharing what we have learned about national adaptation planning with others in the Caribbean community to build our countries’ resilience to climate change.

    Videos

  • AGRIMONITOR: AGRICULTURE POLICY FOOD SECURITY AMD CLIMATE CHANGE, 33min. on Open Your Eyes...

  • MANAGE PESTISIDES RESPONSIBLY: ADAPT TO CLIMATE CHANGE, 27min. on Open Your Eyes...

  • BELIZE BEST YOUTH INITIATIVE 2016, 23min. on Open Your Eyes...

  • BNTU's STRIKE ACTION CONTINUES ON FRIDAY, 5min. The BNTU is not satisfied with the outcome of the meeting with the PM. BNTU President Luke Palacio says that the three percent salary adjustment deferral will not be accepted. He says that the PM was able to address some of the good governance issues, but several other points were not satisfactorily agreed upon.

  • While the BNTU leadership and Prime Minister meet at the Belize Biltmore Plaza, teachers gather outside the hotel in solidarity, 1.5min.

  • Ziplining in Belize, 3min. Ziplining through the jungle in Belize...

  • TROPIC AIR The Airline of Belize, 9min.

  • Snorkeling with Manatee in Caye Caulker, Belize, 1min. Caye Caulker is an island reachable by an hour ferry ride from Belize City in Belize. On a 5 hour snorkeling tour we were lucky to come across a Manatee. Manatees are mammals, so they need to come to the surface to breathe every 2 minutes. They eat sea grass and weed

  • Nurse Sharks feeding at Shark Ray Alley in Caye Caulker, Belize, 1min.

  • Landing in Belize City Belize, 1min.

  • A Tour Through Belize, 4.5min. When I was cruising we stopped at belize and we hired this lady to drive us around and show us the city back in 2014.

  • Food Security Video, 8.5min. While it Toledo District is known for its lush landscapes and cultural diversity it also features the highest rates of poverty throughout the Country of Belize. Humana People to People Belize has implemented a number of strategies/ Activities in the area to reduce malnutrition and poverty. One of which is the development of Model Farms to promote Sustainable Farm Management and Resilience and also to build the capacity of farmers in the area while creating income generation for families.

  • Honeymoon in Belize, 2min. Honeymoon at Hamanasi Resort in Belize, June 2016.

  • Our Trip to Belize, 10min.

  • Ambergis Caye scuba diving., 8min.

  • Belize Excursion Part 04, 48min.

    October 13, 2016


    FOR TODAY'S BELIZE WEATHER, CLICK HERE

    Click for our Daily Tropical Weather Report.

    Specials and Events

    Last night's TV news on Channel 7, Channel 5, LOVETV, PGTV, West Vision (Cayo) and CTV 3. Also with the most recent Open Your Eyes, Rise and Shine Morning Show, and the Dickie Bradley Specials


    The San Pedro Sun

    Impressive Increases in Tourism Arrivals Continue
    For fifteen (15) consecutive months from June 2015 to September 2016, the Tourism Industry has been experiencing record breaking increases in overnight arrivals every month, with impressive double digit increases of as much as 33% growth. We are now nine (9) months through 2016 and the tourism arrival figures continue to show this upward trend, closing off this third quarter with an incredible 26.9% increase for the month September 2016 over September 2015.

    Wassup Expo postponed due to strike
    The Wassup Expo, which was originally scheduled for Thursday, October 13th, has been postponed until further notice due to recent strike by the Belize National Teacher’s Union (BNTU). The expo is the perfect opportunity to get acquainted with what San Pedro Town has to offer, and this non-profit initiative will allow clubs, and organizations to provide information to both youth, and the general public. According to organizer Kate Corrigan, the date will be confirmed based on the venue’s availability as soon as the San Pedro High School authorities are available to meet. “I am wishing to have the expo in two to three weeks, and I am proposing to set the date to either Thursday, October 27th or Thursday, November 3rd,” said Corrigan.

    Intermagia brings magic to La Isla Bonita
    In an effort to raise funds to assist the San Pedro Kids Club, the Rotary Club of Ambergris Caye (RCAC) hosted the “Intermagia Magic Show” on Monday, October 10th. Crowds gathered at the Paradise Theater to experience the thrill of magic with two children’s shows, starting at 2PM, and an adult event at 7PM. The magicians represented countries from Central America, South America, and Europe, assembling the best international acts to keep the crowd engaged and entertained.

    Ambergris Today

    25 Years Ago - Flashback to a Candy Treat of the Past
    No, it’s not sand that you are looking at. This is Casham (also spelt Caan Sham) an OLD Belizean treat (or candy back in the days) that you cannot find in the stores anymore. You know you are an Old Time San Pedrano if you know what Casham is. Do you know what it is? I tell you it was every child's delight; it is so nice that even adults used to lick it right off the palm of the hand. Casham was so very popular that folks used to make it and it was sold by little kids all over the village. Five cents could fetch you two match boxes leveled with casham. Okay, now to end the mystery. Casham was a kind of candy made with corn. Corn is roasted until light brown and the ground with a regular corn mill. When it was fine and powdery, sugar was added to make this delicious powdery candy.

    Miss Belize Universe Visits La Isla Bonita
    Rebecca “Bex” Rath, was crowned Ms. Belize Universe on September 10, 2016. Bex will now compete against 90 other women from all over the world as she represents “The Jewel” in the Miss Universe pageant in the Philippines on January 30, 2017 in Manila. This weekend San Pedro had the honor of her vist. She flew into La Isla Bonita via Maya Island Air and Banana Beach was more than excited to have her as one of their guests where she mingled, practiced, had a photo shoot and a little interview. Rebecca was then trilled to have had dinner at Hidden Treasure Restaurant. She even had time to stop by the Lions Den to give a donation at a fundraiser being held there. Rebecca is working with some of the best designers in the world to assure her wardrobe is world class; is learning from models, photographers and past beauty queens with experience in the world of pageantry; and exercises daily with some of the finest trainers in Belize to put her in the best physical shape possible.

    Misc Belizean Sourcesmzz

    Urban Birdwatch in San Pedro
    Inviting everyone from San Pedro to come and learn about the birds in your area. No need to register, just show up at Central Park at 6 am on Sunday the 16th. The schedule for the other locations of Urban Birdwatch is also here.

    Help Belize's Teachers Buy Food
    Support the BNTU in their courageous and noble quest for good governance, folks. Good governance for country, not party. My name is André Habet, and I am hoping to raise money for the Belize National Teacher's Union who are currently on a nationwide strike in my home country as a result of continued disinterest from the national government in raising their salaries and providing basic benefits. On October 14, BNTU teachers will no longer be getting paid while on their current strike. Due to the miniscule wages they're provided, these teachers have little to fall back on for basics like groceries and other essentials. With this campaign, I hope to raise funds that I will then transfer directly to BNTU's Heritage Bank account, which is 1080719 Heritage Bank Ltd if you'd prefer to transfer money to them directly (they cannot withdraw the money themselves from this campaign because Gofundme has country restrictions).

    Scholarship Opportunity!
    The OAS Department of Human Development, Education and Employment and the Centro Internacional de Estudios Interdisciplinarios-CIESI- in Perú, are offering scholarships under the PDSP-PAEC Program (Partial scholarships) for the course: “Evaluating the Impact of Development Programs on Food security”. This is an online course and will be delivered in English. The deadline for receiving the applications at the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, NEMO Building, Belmopan is October 21, 2016 for forwarding to Washington, D.C.

    BNTU says planned protest at Headquarters is intimidation tactic
    Press Release from BNTU

    Award and Recognition Ceremony
    On Tuesday 11th October,2016 Eastern Police Division South held its 3rd quarterly "Award and Recognition Ceremony" at Eastern Police Division South Head Quarters. The master of ceremony was; Mr. Douglas Hyde, PC #1471 Frederic Gordon blessed us with the opening pray, the welcome address was done by our esteem commander Mr. Chester Williams, our guest speaker were no other than our Hon. Minister Godwin Hulse, and the vote of thanks were done by the ruler him self Dept. Commander Mr. Alden Dawson. Our special invited guess for this event were; Hon.Minister Godwin Hulse,and CEO Ret'd. Colonel George Lovell. A total of 22 awards were issued to officers from, Precinct No. 1, 2, Community Policing,Crime Investigation Branch, Traffic Branch, Special Branch & our civilian body. Congratulation to all receptionists and we encourage you all to continue serving your community with, pride,dedication and great dignity.

    Arsonist caught on camera
    Police have a suspect for the burning of a vehicle at the home of Deputy Prime Minister Patrick Faber.

    Grant Funding Opportunity for small business enterprises
    You still have time to apply. EMPRENDE BELIZE FUND - Awards will be for seed capital to start-up or expand your business. The program is for new and relatively new innovative businesses who are interested in growing their business. The program will ONLY consider businesses that have been in existence for less than three years continuous service from the moment they collected revenue for their first sale. The maximum you can apply for is $5,555.00 US. Application Deadline: October 26th, 2016.

    Swirly Head Fruit Wines
    Swirly Head wine has the best sorrel wine around, and it's made here in Cayo. Lower Dover Lodge is where it's made, and they do it right. It's pleasantly dry, and goes good with just about everything. Cool label too. They've been producing for over 2 years now, and have got the technique down to a science.

    Four of Belize's BEST collaborate on OUR conservation song!
    Thanks to these folks for their time and patience! Will let you hear the song very soon. Hopefully, we're are able to produce a video as well. The message is CLEAR: Conserve our environment for the future because WE ARE BELIZE!!! Thanks to each and every one of you! Nuff LOVE AND RESPECT!!! Sponsored by Wildlife Conservation Society and PCI Media Impact!

    Ambassador Carlos Moreno donates maintenance facility, valued at USD $2.23 million
    Ambassador Carlos Moreno recently donated a maintenance facility, valued at USD $2.23 million, to the Government of Belize and Belize Coast Guard at a ceremony at the Belize Coast Guard (BCG) headquarters. The facility is part of a USD $30 million investment to support the Belize Defence Force and BCG since 2011. The new facility will enhance the BCG’s ability to conduct around the clock maintenance of Coast Guard vessels and strengthen the BCG’s overall capacity to respond to crises. It also includes rooms for added storage, training, billeting space, and a medical clinic.

    SBDC Workshop: Costing and Pricing Workshop
    Presented By: Mrs. Vicky Heredia Business Advisor, SBDCBelize, Beltraide. Location: Beltraide, Conference Room, 14th, Orchid Garden Street, Belmopan. Workshop Date: 20 October, 2016. Time: 9am to 12noon. Cost: $25. The overall objective of this training is to equip our clients with knowledge, skills and capabilities to determine all costs related to the production of their goods or services. By doing so entrepreneurs will be able to apply an adequate price to their product or service which encompasses all the costs while allowing them to make a profit and still being feasible for customers.

    Government Condemns Torching of the Deputy Prime Minister’s Vehicle
    The Government strongly condemns the actions of those persons who put the lives of the Deputy Prime Minister Hon. Patrick Faber and his two young children in danger by illegally entering his yard and setting his vehicle on fire. It is welcomed news that no one was injured in this cowardly and despicable act. The current climate created by the teachers’ strike is no excuse for this lawless behavior and Government calls on the mastermind and other persons involved in inciting violence to stop and allow the peaceful democratic process to proceed.

    BNTU Accepts Invitation to Meet with Prime Minister
    The Office of the Prime Minister is pleased to inform that the Belize National Teachers’ Union (BNTU) has accepted the invitation to meet with the Prime Minister on Thursday, October 13, 2016 to further discuss the governance issues raised by the BNTU. It is the hope of the Government that the meeting will be fruitful and yield results that will see an end to the teachers’ strike.

    Job Opportunity at Belize Internet Marketing!
    Looking for a creative and hardworking individual for the post of Creative Assistant.

    Mayan Expo 2016!!!
    This Saturday join us in Belmopan for the annual mayan expo whereby we will showcase, history, literature, music, dance, food and crafts. It's a day you can't miss. Come and celebrate our culture, beliefs and traditions.

    Shake Your Shimmy Bellydance Workshop
    Oct. 13-15, Bliss Center (on the stage)

    Protecting the Vaca is complex
    President of Friends of Vaca Forest Reserve, Mr. Orlando Itza explained to GEF SGP National Coordinator and Mr. Patrick Scott about the state of the Vaca F.R.

    Channel 7

    DPM Vehicle Torched
    Early this morning, news went viral on Facebook that another one of Deputy Prime Minister Patrick Faber's vehicles had been destroyed. This time, it was his Mazda CX-15 – a mid-sized SUV - and it was set on fire sometime around midnight. The arsonist went to his home in the Hollywood area of Lord's Bank – a home which has at least five surveillance cameras on the outside. Seen here, the man, who has not been identified as yet, was caught on camera as he jumped the fence with a bottle of fuel to use as an accelerant. He then poured it all over the Deputy Prime Minister's vehicle – and then went and got a full five gallon canister of fuel – returned six minutes later, doused the vehicle again, and then jumped the fence – after slipping on the surface made slick by all the fuel. The Ladyville Fire Department got the call at 12:15 and Faber posted this video on Facebook of the firefighters putting out the fire. Today, we spoke with the Commander of the Rural Eastern Division, in whose jurisdiction this crime happened, and here's what he had to say about their search for this man:

    Teachers Union Agrees To Sit with PM
    For his part, Faber posted on his Facebook page, quote, "Regardless of the circumstances, I have not and have no intention of casting any blame on the BNTU and the teachers of Belize for last night's incident at my residence." And government needs all the goodwill it can get – because tomorrow the Prime Minister is meeting with the BNTU for the first time in three weeks. Last night we told you about his invitation to meet on Thursday at 2:00. Well, a government release today reports that the BNTU has accepted the invitation. The main item on the agenda will be the governance issues raised by the BNTU. The government release states, quote, "It is the hope of the Government that the meeting will be fruitful and yield results that will see an end to the teachers' strike."

    Strike Goes Into Day 8
    Pivotal because the teacher's strike rolled on today – and tens of thousands of school-children remained out of the classroom. The news tonight is that the strike continues tomorrow, going into its eighth day. Today teachers were encouraged to show up at their branch headquarters to participate in unspecified activities. In Belize City, that meant awareness activities. We saw a small group of about 40 teachers proceeding single file along Central American Boulevard at midday where they were handing out leaflets. Under the deathless motto "We shall not be moved" those leaflets re-state the main governance issues and neatly add the 3% - as one of those immovable issues. Tonight, at this hour, the Belize City Branch is having a Vigil at the Memorial Park from 5:30 to 9:00.

    Teachers Reject UDP Protest
    And tonight at that vigil the teachers may be praying that there are no problems when the UDP holds a protest in front of their union headquarters in Belize City. According to the BNTU, the UDP has been granted a permit to protest and picket in front of their headquarters tomorrow morning until midday. We gather this is not just Alfonso Noble and Yellowman this time. And that's why the BNTU has issued a release saying they are, quote, "very much concerned that the UDP will be allowed to come to the doorstep of the BNTU when we have our members here, daily" end quote. The BNTU asks, quote, "will our members, teachers, (and) supporters…be restricted in their movement in and out of the building by this protest?" End quote. The BNTU concludes that this is, quote, "yet another attempt by the ruling party to instill fear and intimidation." End quote.

    Senate Select Comte Meets, Cannot Elect Chair
    And before we continue with the news, in an update to the story we just ran about the BNTU's concerns with the UDP's plan to picket their headquarters tomorrow, the UDP has confirmed that there will be no picket tomorrow. It has been called off in view of the afternoon meeting between the Prime Minister and the Union. Continuing now with the news, as we told you last night, the PUP has chosen to boycott the Senate Select Committee, calling it bogus. But, with or without the opposition, the ball is rolling…and the Senate probe which everyone was calling for is underway – even if got off to a patchy start today. That was the first meeting where the 5 committee members were supposed to select the chair for this Senate Committee. Government has said that one of the 3 social partners must chair the committee, but the problem is that both the Labour Senator and the business Senator do not accept the present makeup of the committee – with two UDP Senators.

    Chamber Holds Special Meeting To Decide on Shutdown
    And the after effects of that impasse are having an effect right now on the Chamber of Commerce's membership, which is holding a Special General Meeting at the Radisson right now. They are deciding whether or not they should embark on a one-day business shutdown in protest of governance issues. The Chamber is considering two resolutions, the first to push through changes to the composition and terms of reference for the Senate Select Committee, and, failing that, effect a shutdown. The second is to effect a shutdown is there is not immediate action on the Public Accounts Committee and the Integrity Commission.

    Cops Got Grenade And Gun
    Turning now to police news, the Southside strike team came up big this morning when they got a pistol and a grenade at two different locations. The pistol, a 9 millimetre Ruger with 13 live rounds was found this morning on Pelican Street. And then on Banak Street, the strike team found a grenade. The grenade is described to us as non-lethal pineapple type. We note that this is the second grenade found on Banak Street in two years. The first was lethal.

    Pair of Dangerous Prisoners on the 'Pan
    Tonight, Belmopan Police are a manhunt to find 2 dangerous prisoners who escaped from their custody. They're Lincoln Bejerano, who is on remand awaiting trial for murder, and David Cruz Jr. who is also on remand for the Income Tax robbery which happened 3 months ago. We understand that the men were supposed to have been taken for a routine adjournment before the Belmopan court, but something happened which allowed for them to escape from police custody. We tried to find out more from the police boss, Commissioner Allen Whylie, and here's what he told us today: Allen Whylie - Commissioner of Police: "There were two prisoners I was informed this morning who had escaped from the cell block. One was charged for murder and one was charged for robbery and my understanding is that there were to appear on court today. The individual officer who we deemed to be at fault will be dealt with disciplinary. We believe that proper protocol weren't adhere to in terms of his going into the cell block, removing those prisoners to use the ablution and in that process that was when they were able to escape from him."

    Mayor and the Moratorium
    There are about 2,000 taxi operators in the city, that number includes dollar vans and the inner city buses. That is A LOT of green plates on the streets and Mayor Bradley and his councillors have been working for years to cut that number down. One of the council's approaches was a 2012 taxi license moratorium. Well after 6 months of consultation with the taxi operators, the city council has decided to finally lift the moratorium under specific conditions. Mayor Bradley outlined those conditions at a Battlefield Park press briefing this afternoon. Darrell Bradley - Belize City, Mayor: "We don't want the city to be flooded with taxi operators so that we are giving a commitment that we will not issue a taxi license unless a person is a bonafide member of a union and they come with a recommendation but we are also asking that union presidents and union members: 1. You hold us accountable to that so if you see someone with a new plate and you see them out and about driving about, then you ask "Mr. Mayor how did he get his license?" And then you yourself are discriminating. You don't allow any and everybody, I like how Mr. Robinson put it you want people of a certain calibre, people who are reliable, people who really chose to make this their livelihood, people who have a vested interested in ensuring that taxi operators have a good reputation."

    Taxi's On Board With New Plan
    But overall, most of the cooperatives endorse this new system. We spoke to two representatives from two different unions and here is what they had to say. Alexander Daniels - Chairman, Belcan Taxi Coop Society: "Da wa valid move, da wa valid point whe he do, I think this is the best way to go with the exception of the freelance and the ones whe no choose to be in a cooperative. You know for some reason they decide they no like rules and regulations so there will be a two or couple bad apples in any organisation." Courtney Weatherburne: "So that's your only concern at this point?" Alexander Daniels - Chairman, Belcan Taxi Coop Society: "Yes ma'am because we are an established cooperative." Courtney Weatherburne: "How does a taxi operator become a part of a cooperative what's the process?"

    Pope Caught With A Kilo
    Yesterday, Windell Pope, of Mahogany Heights in Belize City, was caught with 1.1 kilos or 2.4 pounds of marijuana. The GSU searched an empty lot on Santa Barbara Street where they found Pope along with a black bag containing the marijuana. He appeared in the Magistrate's Court today where he pled not guilty to drug trafficking. He was released on bail of $5000, and his trial was adjourned until December 13th.

    Cops Charged With Extortion, Not Human Trafficking
    Last week we told you about two police officers who were pending charges related to human trafficking. Well tonight we can report that two officers have been charged not for human trafficking, but extortion. They are Corporal Clifford Alvarez and P.C Johnny Coba. They were both charged for extortion and received bail of $5,000 each plus surety of same amount. They are not to interfere with witnesses and report to station every Friday between 8am and 5pm. Best information is that they did not facilitate human traffic, but extorted a the owner of an establishment who may have employed illegal or trafficked persons. Police Minister Hulse said they still brought disrepute to their profession:…

    Mac-10 Detained For Questioning in Faull Murder
    As the Minister, Hulse did not know specifics about that case, and similarly, he could only speak in very general terms about the John McAfee investigation. The documentary made all kinds of explosive allegations, and seemed to offer actionable information for at least a conspiracy to murder investigation, but we haven't heard anything from police since then. We asked the police minister what he has heard:… Hon. Godwin Hulse - Minister of Police: "I got snippets only but I did here it was rather nasty. I understand just a while ago from my officers that in fact a team was sent up there to have further investigations and that's all I can say at this moment. You know I never give out information that I'm not fully accurate on." Reporter: "There are allegations that one of the girls has been detained and she was at one of the police stations here in Belize City."

    Shots Fired Arenal
    And, while police are looking for these two men, they are also looking for the person who fired a shotgun blast at their Arenal Police Station a few weeks ago. Viewers will remember that Arenal is famous for the fact that half of the village being in Belize and half being in Guatemala. The suspicion that the gunshot was fired as some protest for the outcome of the OAS investigation which vindicated Belizean lawmen in the fatal shooting of 13 year-old Julio Ruano. Today, the police commissioner told the media that there is no evidence at this time to support that suspicion: Allen Whylie - Commissioner of Police: "Indeed a report has been received that whilst the officers were there they heard the loud sound of a gunshot and they realised that the building had been shot because pellets came into the building. The matter was reported, the scenes of crime went out there, the investigators went out there and that is still active investigation. While we suspect that the shot could have originated from across the border we have not yet confirmed in terms of the identity of who may have done that."

    Hot Mix Turns Into Hot Mess
    It's been four months since the Lake Independence Boulevard, the street that connects the George Price Highway to Chetumal Street in Belize City, was paved over with hot mix. Since then, the boulevard has seen heavy usage from cars, trucks and buses, and it's not holding up well. For the past week or so, we've noted a couple spots where the road seemed to be breaking apart, one area developed a hump on the side of the road, and another area in the middle actually cracked open. It's a brand new road, and the rule of thumb is that hot mix – if it is well laid - should last for more than five years, or as much as ten years. So we reached out to Romel Berges, whose company RJB Construction paved the road, for some answers. According to Berges, an excavation on the road is taking place to identify the exact problem so that proper measures can be take in its repair. We'll have an update on the state of the road for you tomorrow.

    166 New Cops
    Tonight, the Police Department has increased its strength by an additional 166 new officers. They passed out of the Police Training Academy this morning in Belmopan, and our news team was there to speak to the police bosses. Its Police Minister Godwin Hulse's first passing out ceremony, and we asked him about the priority policing areas that he is focused on. Here's what he and the Commissioner had to say today: These officers were part of recruit squad intake number 93.

    OCEANA Says Seismic Shadow Looms
    At the end of September, the Ministry of Economic Development and Petroleum, informed the public that, after approval from Cabinet, it would be conducting a multibeam and seep sea survey in the Exclusive Economic Zone, and away from the barrier reef, atolls and other World Heritage Sites. According to the Ministry, these surveys are part of a larger effort involving the US and Mexico to collect new data on the geological features of the area. And though the Ministry promises that these surveys will be conducted away from any major tourism areas and important fishing and spawning sites, some conservation organizations are not happy. According to OCEANA some of the methods used in conducting the surveys could in fact be harmful to the marine life in the surrounding area. In a letter written to oppose the government's decision to allow the surveys, OCEANA cites disruption of mating and feeding habits, abandonment of habitat, and potential deafness in some marine mammals, as major concerns. OCEANA also mentions that this sort of seismic testing is often the first step in the development of oil and gas fields.

    Bobby Chin's Birthday
    Every year, Bobby Chin of “Black Chiney” comes to Belize to celebrate his birthday. This year, he’s doing it bigger than ever. This Friday to Sunday has been labelled Chin Weekend, and events will take place on each day. Chin joined us in the studio today to let us know what to expect. For more information about Chin Weekend, and how you can get tickets, you can check out Bobby Chin Birthday Weekend page on Facebook.

    Channel 5

    Deputy Prime Minister’s vehicle set ablaze
    At midnight on Tuesday, the vehicle of Deputy Prime Minster, Patrick Faber went up in flames; police are looking for a suspect caught on camera. He was seen jumping the [...]

    GOB Believes Teachers Action is Cause for Faber’s Vehicle being Set Ablaze
    There are no arrests so far nor have police uncovered the particulars of a getaway vehicle. Late this evening the government seemed to be linking the arson to the ongoing [...]

    Senate Special Select Committee holds first meeting
    The inaugural meeting of the Senate Special Select Committee to investigate the Immigration and Nationality Department was held this morning in Belmopan, on the heels of a special report by [...]

    Who wants to chair Special Committee?
    It remains unclear, following today’s meeting, who will preside over the Senate Special Select Committee.  According to U.D.P. senators Aldo Salazar and Doctor Carla Barnett, neither of them was inclined [...]

    Church Senator reveals threats to home and family
    Perhaps the most controversial representative of the social partners, Pastor Ashley Rocke, whose position on two occasions has angered the churches, declined chairmanship of the Senate Select Committee for fear [...]

    Senators discuss how to create budget for Special Committee hearings
    When the chair could not be appointed, the focus of the meeting then shifted to an agreed process through which a budget will be created to finance the undertaking. At [...]

    Teachers will strike for eighth day; getting ready for meeting with Prime Minister
    The strike called by the Belize National Teachers’ Union will go into its eighth day on Thursday. But whether it continues after that will depend on a key meeting between [...]

    U.D.P. members to picket B.N.T.U. office; Union warns against intimidation
    While the Belize National Teachers’ Union will be meeting with the Prime Minister on Thursday, a press release issued today announces that, as confirmed by police, members and supporters of [...]

    Belize Branch teachers hit streets to continue public education campaign
    After an early morning meeting at their headquarters, about one hundred members of the Belize District Branch of the Belize National Teachers’ Union headed out on foot into Southside Belize [...]

    UDP Picketing called off
    News Five has confirmed with organizer of the picket called by the United Democratic Party, Alfonso Noble, that it has been called off. The Prime Minister meets with the Union [...]

    Chamber Holds Special General Meeting
    At this time the Belize Chamber of Commerce and Industry is holding a special general meeting to determine the extent of its participation on the Senate Special Select Committee.  The [...]

    Attorney Sharon Pitts also a beneficiary in Haulover land deal
    In part one of the story of the scandalous land deal at Mile Five on the Philip Goldson Highway, we reported that Andre Vega, the son of the former Deputy [...]

    Commissioner of Police discusses escape of dangerous prisoners in Belmopan
    According to Belmopan police, two prisoners escaped from police custody while being held in the capital around midday today. The prisoners have been identified as twenty-five year old Lincoln Bejerano, [...]

    Only six defendants proceed to inquiry in Sarkis Abou-Nehra home invasion and rape case
    Eighteen persons were initially charged in connection with the December 2015 home invasion at the house of a businessman Sarkis Abou Nehra in Burrell Boom Village.  At least six persons [...]

    CitCo lifts moratorium on taxi licenses in Belize City
    The Belize City Council has been tackling for the past two years the issue of an overflow of taxi licenses in the Old Capital. It issued a moratorium on issuing [...]

    Young woman alleges police brutality at traffic stop
    What was supposed to be a routine traffic stop on Northside Belize City this past Friday night became an explosive instance of alleged police brutality. The complainant is a young [...]

    Senator Godwin Hulse denies conflict of interest in Senate vote
    The People’s United Party is calling out Senator Godwin Hulse for casting a vote during the last sitting of the Senate on September thirtieth.  The argument here is that Hulse’ [...]

    Police Minister wants to bring community and department together
    Senator Godwin Hulse has been adjusting to his responsibilities as Minister of Police since being assigned the additional portfolio during the last Cabinet reshuffle.  The process has been shaping out [...]

    Minister Hulse calls for reforms to criminal investigation
    According to Hulse, there is a need for reform within the Belize Police Department particularly where it concerns criminal prosecution.   Godwin Hulse, Minister of Police “The whole crime scene [...]

    CTV3

    San Felipe Resident Accused Of Sexual Assault
    Forty eight year old Carlos Quetzal, a resident of San Felipe Village in the Orange Walk District, was formally arrested and charged yesterday for ‘Sexual Assault’ following a report made by a minor who is also an employee at the same company Quetzal works for in the community of Blue Creek. The minor told Orange Walk Police that while at work on the day of Tuesday September 27th 2016, Quetzal approached her from behind and reportedly grasped her on the breast and buttocks causing her to scream. Quetzal then placed a twenty dollar bill inside the minor’s helmet and told her to discontinue screaming. The minor later informed her supervisor about the incident then proceeded to visit the Orange Walk Police Station in the company of her mother where an official report was made.

    Mr. Belize Continues To Shine In The World Of Bodybuilding
    On Saturday October 9th a Belizean team of bodybuilders travelled to Chetumal for the Mr. Chetumal bodybuilding and fitness competition. Seven athletes representing Spartan Gym in Corozal Town and Hillview Train Station in San Ignacio Town took part in the competition which saw dozens of fitness athletes representing all the gyms in Chetumal and neighboring Mexican states. After the judging, there was good news for Belize as our athletes swept several of the top spots. From Cayo’s Hillview Train Station, Gina Lovell placed 1st in Body Figure, while Barry “Lee Charles” Busano placed 3rd in the Overall, and Benjamin Reneau placed 2nd in Men’s Physique. From Spartan Fitness Gym in Corozal Town, our very own Mr. Belize Rigo Vellos Place 1st in the Overall category, Wendy Lizarraga placed 2nd in the Bikini while Rigo Menjivar placed 1st in the Junior category.

    Tourism Arrivals Continue To Trend Upwards
    The Belize Tourism Board issued its statistics for tourist arrivals yesterday which shows that the Tourism sector has been experiencing significant upsurges on a monthly basis particularly in overnight arrivals since June of last year up to September of this year. Though nine months have passed by in 2016, the arrivals continue to display an ascending trend, ending the third quarter of this year with a total of 26.9% increase for the month of September as opposed to that of September last year. Overall increases for the first nine months in 2016 amounted to a sum of 293,622 as it relates to overnight visits marking it an increase of 16.4% compared to last year. Cruise arrivals have increased by 20.6% with a total of 54,569 passengers for September 2016. For the first nine months of this year, the overall Cruise passenger arrivals recorded a 1.3 % growth. The BTB reported that the United States continues to be the industry’s largest market followed by Europe and Canada.

    BCCI Members To Vote On Tow Important Resolutions
    The Special General Meeting of the Belize Chamber of Commerce is currently under way in Belize City. It is a very important one that will decide if there will be a national shutdown of businesses. What we can tell you tonight is that members of the chamber are being asked to agree or disagree on two resolutions. One: that Business Senator Mark Lizarraga shall only participate in the senate inquiry into the Special Audit of the Ministry of Immigration and Nationality if it is reconstituted as directed and the terms of reference are strengthened. And the second resolution that members will be asked to vote for or against is that the members of the BCCI shall shut down their businesses for one day if the governance measures are not met. We will have more on the meeting in tomorrow’s newscast.

    Deputy Prime Minister's Vehicle Set On Fire
    In less than two months, a government vehicle belonging to Deputy Prime Minister, Honorable Patrick Faber has been targeted. In the first instance, the Minister of Education and now Deputy Prime Minister claimed that the vehicle was stolen from in front of the home of a female friend then driven into the Caribbean Sea. And last night, the DPM’s second vehicle was vandalized this time beyond repairs as it was set on fire. The incident happened at around midnight at the DPM’s home in Ladyville and was captured by the surveillance camera. Assistant Commissioner of Police Edward Broaster shared more details about the case with the media.

    BNTU And GOB Goes Back To The Negotiating Table
    All indications are the teachers’ union strike will continue into its eighth day tomorrow, Thursday. But there is some news tonight regarding the resumption of discussions between leaders of the Belize National Teachers Union and the Prime Minister. A notice released by the Office of the Prime Minister indicates that the BNTU has accepted his offer to meet tomorrow afternoon in Belize City. The notice states [quote] “it is the hope of the Government that the meeting will be fruitful and yield results that will see an end to the teachers’ strike” [end quote]. The BNTU has made no official declaration of the meeting, however.

    Former Minister of Lands Benefits From Father's Position
    In 2015, following dozens of allegations of wrongdoing in the Ministry of Natural Resources Hon. Gaspar Vega, Orange Walk North Area Representative, was stripped of his Lands Portfolio. Vega, who was once a very powerful Minister in the Barrow Administration, has never properly answered to a litany of allegations of wrongdoing as Minister in charge. These wrongdoings include facilitating land hustling by members of his family, relatives and close UDP cronies. Well, Vega’s Ministry, which the PM once described as a hotbed of corruption seemed to have been on fire. There is more evidence of land grabs by a member of his family and well-known UDP supporters. Documents have been leaked to the media out of the Ministry which show that attorney and senior UDP Sharon Pitts bought property measuring 2.75 acres for $10,569 in July 2012, but apparently the land was privately owned. To correct the land sale, Government ended up acquiring their own land, but this time the price went up and Pitts hit jackpot when she put a price-tag of $400,000. There also a road reserve portion which she sold to Earl Gabb for $45,000.

    Prime Minister Calls On Teachers To Return To The Negotiating Table
    We’re not sure if the CUT’s letter was a factor for the Prime Minister’s considerations over the past 24 hours but after an entire week of trading harsh words with the Teacher’s Union, today we can report a slight silver lining in negotiations. Last week’s negotiations ended in a very sour state when the PM announced that he will be negotiating good governance issues with the umbrella organization, the National Trade Union Congress of Belize, and not the BNTU. Well, it appears an additional letter sent by BNTU President Luke Palacio to the PM today was convincing enough for the PM to reconsider that position. We have obtained a letter sent to Palacio by PM Barrow just a few hours ago, in which he indicates that he willing to continue the negotiations with the BNTU, and then proposes a meeting with Palacio on Thursday at 2pm. We’re not sure if that meeting will come about then, because Union sources have indicated that the BNTU had already scheduled a Council of Management meeting that same time to review the situation.

    Tires Burns In Orange Walk
    There have been sporadic acts of civil disobedience by members of the public who want to demonstrate support for the BNTU’s strike action. In Belize, burning tires on Belcan Bridge blocked traffic hours for several hours. Again, burning tires on the southern highway a day after lit up the night skies. Well the act of burning tires seems more epidemic than the Zika virus, because it has spread to the north. Over the weekend, tires were seen burning on the Phillip Goldson highway at two locations. There were burning tires at the mameyal curve and again outside San Pablo Village. The fire department had to respond and douse the fire, then clear the road to allow traffic to pass. The Police are also investigating and looking for accused culprits to charge, like they did in Belize City.

    Separate Chopping Incident Leaves Two Injured
    Two residents from the village of August Pine Ridge are tonight recuperating at the Karl Heusner Memorial Hospital from chop wounds which they sustained in two separate incidents. First we’ll tell you about Alex Chan who was injured after he was caught in the attempt of robbery. Thirty three year old Carmin Chan, Belizean labourer and resident of August Pine Ridge Village reported to authorities that he left home on Saturday night along with his family to attend two wakes taking place in the village and upon his return home sometime shortly after midnight, he observed that the lights in his home were switched on and that two boards from one of the windows located to the front of the house were removed.

    LOVE FM

    Arson at Deputy Prime Minister’s Home
    A vehicle worth fifty five thousand dollars was torched last night. That vehicle belongs to the Government of Belize and was assigned to the Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Education, Patrick Faber. The vehicle was inside Faber’s yard in Lord’s Bank when a man who was captured on surveillance camera, hopped over the fence […]

    Minister Hulse Condemns Negativity Regarding Arson at Faber’s Home
    The negative comments being spewed on social media following the arson at the home of the Deputy Prime Minister have been abundant. Some of those who comment have not only doubted the story that the Minister’s vehicle was set on fire but they have also been gloating at the misfortune that has befallen him. One […]

    BNTU Goes Back to Meet with Prime Minister for Renegotiations
    The Belize National Teachers Union has accepted the Prime Minister’s invitation to return to the negotiation table. The meeting is set to take place tomorrow at two o’clock at the Belize Biltmore Plaza in Belize City. The issue of good governance will be further discussed in that meeting and the Government is hopeful that quote, […]

    Council of Churches Reiterates Call to Go Back to School
    As has been reported the churches have called for the teachers and students to return to the classrooms. That call was reiterated once again by the President of the Belize Council of Churches, Reverend Roosevelt Papouloute. REV ROOSEVELT PAPOULOUTE “I cannot find the word to express my concern. It is a very very unfortunate situation […]

    First Meeting of the Senate Special Select Committee; Chairperson Pending
    A chairperson is yet to be named for the Senate Special Select Committee, although it was hoped that that portion of the process would have been completed in this morning’s sitting. Government Senator, Aldo Salazar summed up the situation regarding the absence of a chairman for the committee. ALDO SALAZAR “From my understanding Senator Lizarraga is […]

    Bejerano and Cruz Escape Arraignment for Murder and Robbery
    Lincoln Bejerano and David Cruz Hyde are on the run after escaping from police custody in Belmopan this morning. Love News spoke with the Commissioner of Police, Allen Whylie on the incident. ALLEN WHYLIE “Yes there were two prisoners, I was informed this morning who had escaped. One was charged for murder and one was […]

    Prognosis for Ian and Empress is Guarded but Doctors Remain Hopeful
    This past Friday, eight year old Ian Sambula and eleven year old Empress Hamilton, who sustained grave burnt injuries after their home was set on fire, were flown out to Galveston Texas, Unites States of America to the Shriner’s Burns Hospital for Children to receive emergency Medical Services. Saving the children’s life was a difficult […]

    166 New Police Officers From Squad #93
    Fifty women and one hundred and sixteen men officially became members of the Belize Police Department today under squad number ninety three. The passing out ceremony for these officers took place at the Police Training Academy in Belmopan this morning with the presence of senior police officers from around the country as well as relatives […]

    Moratorium Lifted on Taxi Licenses in Belize City
    After a couple years of consultations, the Belize City Council is lifting the moratorium on the granting of taxi licences. We hear more in this report from Ingrid Fernandez. INGRID FERNANDEZ REPORTS “

    Belize Delegation Looks at Costa Rica’s Best Practices for Child Friendly Spaces
    UNICEF introduced the child friendly municipality initiative back in the nineteen nineties to improve the situation of children around the world. The initiative has been thriving in several countries including Brazil. The Mayor of all nine municipalities in Belize have signed on to ensure that their municipality will be certified as being child friendly. There […]

    Breaking Belize NewsPJ

    Chamber steps up pressure on GOB; one day shutdown agreed
    The Belize Chamber of Commerce and Industry (BCCI) held a business mixer at 5:30 p.m. on Wednesday, October 12th, at the Radisson Fort George Hotel in Belize City, and members agreed to step up the pressure on government to implement various governance reform measures. […]

    Category three hurricane Nicole headed for Bermuda
    Nicole became the sixth hurricane of the 2016 Atlantic hurricane season last Thursday and was located well south of Bermuda. Throughout the same day, it continued strengthening upgrading it to a category two status. Late this evening, Nicole was upgraded to a Category three […]

    BNTU accepts invitation to meet PM Barrow tomorrow
    In a Belize Press Office release issued a short while ago, the Office of the Prime Minister announced that the Belize National Teachers Union (BNTU) has accepted the Prime Minister’s invitation to meet. The meeting will be held at 2:00 p.m. on Thursday, October […]

    Prisoners escape from police custody in Belmopan
    Reports are that two prisoners escaped from police custody while being held in Belmopan around midday today. Sources are also saying that the officers did not follow protocol and that they may be facing disciplinary action. The names of the escaped prisoners are David […]

    BNTU calls out UDP for yet another act of “intimidation”
    The Belize National Teachers’ Union (BNTU) has issued a press release confirming that the law enforcement authority has issued a permit to supporters of the United Democratic Party (UDP) to protest and picket the headquarters of the BNTU in Belize City tomorrow, Thursday, October […]

    First Lady of Jamaica attends ‘Children with Disabilities conference’ in Belize
    The Jamaican Prime Minister’s wife, Juliet Holness, left Jamaica today to partake in the Regional Partnership for Children with Disabilities Conference, to be held in Belize from October 13-14. The invitation to the conference was extended to Holness by the wife of Prime Minister […]

    PUP calls Senate Special Select Committee “bogus”
    The People’s United Party (PUP) issued a press release yesterday expressing its continuous demand for an independent and impartial Senate Select Committee to be appointed to conduct a senate inquiry into the Immigration and Nationality Department scandal. The party lists the reasons why the […]

    Police seek one man for burning of DPM’s vehicle
    Police have obtained the security camera footage from the Deputy Prime Minister, Patrick Faber’s house and are looking for one man in connection with the burning of his vehicle last night. The security camera footage shows the culprit with a gallon in his hand. […]

    Tourism arrivals continue to soar
    The largest foreign exchange earner in Belize, the tourism industry is the bright spot in a dreary economy. The reports of the Belize Tourism Board (BTB) reflect an overall increase in tourist arrivals since June of last year. The month of September saw a […]

    Deputy Prime Minister Vehicle set on fire
    Reports reaching our newsroom are that the vehicle of Patrick Faber, the Deputy Prime Minister and also Minister of Education was set on fire last night. According to reports, around midnight last night, police officials were called to the Deputy Prime Minister’s home in […]

    Blogs

    My Pared Down Travel Dream List for Central America – IT WILL Be a Reality
    Central America, mistakenly I think, is often looked at as a place to enjoy nature and wildlife ONLY. But as you look closer, it’s a place of colonial cities, art, indigenous cultures, delicious foods, coffee and chocolate, Maya sites, beaches, diving and, yes, tons of gorgeous and In November of 2011, just a few months after starting the SanPedroScoop, I wrote a Bucket List – Places to Visit In Central America (and Nearby Mexico) Before I turn(ed) 40. I was the tender age of 38…and had almost two full years for completion. Easy, right? I mean…Central America is, comparatively, pretty tiny. Small countries that I should be able to cover in…days. Ok…probably weeks. But still! Here is my NEW LIST. And I need to stop fooling around. Guatemala is 100 miles from where I sit right now typing? And there are flights going to Guatemala City and Flores, Guat that would make the start of my journey SOOO easy. Or, for the slow, cheap route, there are tons of buses.

    Explorer Series: Belizean Cowboy Santiago Juan
    Ka'ana has started their Explorer Series, and they interviewed Santiago, owner of Hanna Stables. Fascinating gentleman, and if you've ridden with him, you know that he is a true caballero. If you haven't, then it's more than worth riding to Xunantunich with him. "A fantastic tour guide and owner of Hanna’s Stables, Santiago is an expert at giving visitors a truly incredible experience in the jungles of Cayo!"

    International Sourcesizz

    Climate Prediction Center’s Central America Hazards Outlook October 13 – October 19, 2016
    Over the last 7 days, Nicaragua received a beneficial increase in rainfall. TRMM estimates indicate that locally more than 100mm fell over central and eastern parts of the country. The Gulf of Fonseca region of southern Honduras received similar amounts. Conversely, areas to the north received suppressed and below-average rainfall. Some parts of northern Honduras and central Guatemala received very little rain for the week. Other parts of Guatemala and El Salvador received greater, but still below-average, rainfall. The ‘Postrera’ season has generally been dryer than normal, with only some local pockets of more wet conditions. Rainfall anomalies since the beginning of September indicate many areas with negative anomalies exceeding 100mm, especially in Guatemala and Nicaragua. The pattern has been erratic though, and heavier rains have fallen over different parts of the region each week. Some parts of the region that are doing well over the period include southern Honduras, eastern El Salvador, and extreme southeastern Nicaragua.

    First-Half 2016 Visitor Arrivals Up in The Caribbean
    Most Caribbean destinations reported increased overnight visitor arrivals in the first half of 2016, with several countries producing double-digit increases according to Caribbean Tourism Organization (CTO) data. Several destinations continued recent patterns of strong growth, the islands in positive first-half territory include some countries that North Americans rarely visit. A handful of destinations also recorded significant arrivals declines. But overall, the statistics project a positive trend of growing visitor appeal for the region.

    Caribbean Islands Share Climate Change Adaptation Plans
    Representatives from 11 Caribbean countries and development agency partners will meet in Grenada's capital of St George's this week to discuss strategies to prepare for the impact of climate change. Grenada held the final consultation for its National Adaptation Plan (NAP) on Tuesday, October 11, and will now host peers from the region to share lessons from its experience through a two-day regional workshop. "Here in Grenada, we don't have to look far to see the impacts of climate change. We experience them every day," said Senator Simon Stiell, minister of state with responsibility for the environment. "Grenada's NAP process will help protect against the potentially devastating effects of extreme weather like Hurricane Ivan in 2004. We look forward to sharing what we have learned about national adaptation planning with others in the Caribbean community to build our countries' resilience to climate change," added Kevin Andall, permanent secretary with responsibility for human resource development and the environment.

    The Magnificent Mayans
    Visitors to modern-day Mexico and Central America are amazed when they see the remains of the vast cities of the civilization of the Mayan people – there are tall pyramids, huge ball courts, palaces, plazas and sacred wells. The Maya started off as hunter/gatherers that began to settle together in simple communities. As centuries passed they developed a rich civilization with huge cities – some with populations of well over 75,000 people. The cities were ruled by kings. The kings dressed flamboyantly in jaguar-skin wraps and wore gold and jade jewellery and feather headdresses. The people believed the kings were connected directly to the gods. The great pyramids were built as towering religious buildings. They were brightly painted and decorated with statues. The Maya had a great knowledge of astronomy (the study of the stars and planets). They were able to plot the movement of the sun, the moon and Venus. They built observatories and buildings that light up with the rising sun on the summer and winter equinoxes and solstices.

    The Con Man Who Invented His Own Country
    In the early 1820s, a Scottish swindler named Gregor MacGregor devised one of history’s most outlandish moneymaking schemes: he invented his own country. After surfacing in London, the former military officer claimed he had been made the ruler of an idyllic Central American nation called Poyais. Nearly everything about the tropical paradise was fictional—MacGregor had forged a collection of official documents and a full-length guidebook—but that didn’t stop him from making a fortune promoting phony Poyais bonds, land certificates and even a disastrous settlement scheme. Beginning in 1821, the city of London was overrun with reports of a previously unknown nation nestled on the Caribbean coastline of what is now Honduras. Called Poyais, it was supposedly a lush and untapped paradise of fertile farmland, rolling hills and gold-rich streams.

    Belize reports continued impressive increases in tourism arrivals
    For 15 consecutive months from June 2015 to September 2016, the tourism industry in Belize has been experiencing record breaking increases in overnight arrivals every month, with impressive double digit increases of as much as 33 percent growth. Now nine months into 2016, the tourism arrival figures continue to show this upward trend, closing off the third quarter with a 26.9 percent increase for the month of September 2016 over September 2015. Overall, the first nine months of 2016 recorded a total of 293,622 overnight arrivals, a 16.4 percent increase over the same nine months of 2015, which had 252,329 overnight arrivals. Cruise arrivals resulted in 54,569 passengers for September 2016, representing a 20.6 percent increase over September 2015. Overall, cruise passenger arrivals recorded a moderate 1.3 percent increase for the first nine months of 2016, despite having 12 fewer cruise vessels arriving in Belize, inclusive of cruise calls cancelled due to Hurricane Earl.

    Videos

  • Regional Partnership For Children With Disability, 29min. on Open Your Eyes...

  • Minister of Education's vehicle on fire, 15sec. Too close for comfort! My boys and I are safe... thanks to all those showing concern! Surveillance cameras caught the perpetrator in the act! The police is investigating!

  • Select Senate Committee Meeting video, 32min. Today's Senate Select Committee meeting. The Opposition is absent.

  • World Pediatric Project - Belize City, 3min. Logan Buerlein traveled with the World Pediatric Project to Belize City, Belize in October, 2015 to document the mission in photo and video. Here is a short clip from the trip.

  • Punta Gorda, Belize, 4min. I idea was to come down and explore for some sweet water Tarpon. Not feeling great to begin with I catch fever 3days in and can't get a Tarpon jump on film. We did find baby tarpon in the lagoon & 80-90lb fish in a lake. Didn't get to explore the rivers. PG is the Permit capital of the world. In a total of six hours I spent chasing them I got 12-14 great shots, took me awhile to figure out the fly was making to much noise on the entry. Did get some video of some bonefish, location, & the hotel.

  • P.U.P On Senate Select Commttee, 36min. on Open Your Eyes...

  • Agriculture Industry And World Food Day, 36min. on Open Your Eyes...

  • Nothing like a good Marimba session with the Governnor General in attendance!, 2min. Noah, Noah musical rendition by Los Hijos del West Senior & Junior Membership, gracing the presence of Sir Colville Young.

  • Belize Day 8: Chris and Leah Adventure to Mexico Rocks, 4.5min. Chris and Leah adventure to Mexico Rocks to snorkel with fish, eels, rays, and turtles.

  • Tubeing in Belize Caves, 15min.

    October 12, 2016


    FOR TODAY'S BELIZE WEATHER, CLICK HERE

    Click for our Daily Tropical Weather Report.

    Specials and Events

    Last night's TV news on Channel 7, Channel 5, LOVETV, PGTV, West Vision (Cayo) and CTV 3. Also with the most recent Open Your Eyes, Rise and Shine Morning Show, and the Dickie Bradley Specials


    The San Pedro Sun

    San Pedro Teachers and students march in support of the BNTU
    Speaking to The San Pedro Sun about the campaign on the island was SPHS teacher and Staff Representative for the BNTU, Areli Reyes. She indicated that the initiative is not just to join the movement that is taking place countrywide, but to educate the local island population on how important the issue is. “We want the residents on the island to be aware of the situation and have a better understanding. They might be just listening to rumours, or hearing about topic on the social media or TV, but again they might not really know what the real issue is,” said Reyes. “We will be going around visiting different establishments informing everyone what the BNTU movement is all about and what we are demanding.” The Government of Belize sent out a letter on Friday, October 7th, formally requesting BNTU’s President Luke Palacio to return to the negotiating table. It was emphasized in the letter that the Government remains immediately ready to further discuss the good governance agenda and the other issues BNTU has been complaining about.

    Missing Person: Naisy Naiady Chi
    The San Pedro Police are seeking the public’s assistance in locating 21-year-old Naisy Naiady Chi. She was reported missing by her mother, Norma Rodriguez, on Sunday, October 9th. According to the police report, Rodriguez, resident of Marina Drive in the DFC area, reported that she had not seen or heard of Chi for two days. She also reported that she last saw her daughter around 7AM before she went to work on Friday, October 7th. Chi’s best friend informed Rodriguez that she, along with Chi, and another friend went out on Friday night, October 8th to a nightclub. Naisy Naiady Chi is of Hispanic descent, slim built and is five foot and two inches in height. Anyone who sees Chi or knows of her whereabouts is asked to call Police immediately at 206-2206 or call 911.

    Ambergris Today

    25 Years Ago - I Bet You Did Not Know This About Conch
    The only thing the San Pedranos and visitors of today know about conch is conch ceviche. However, here are several things you should know that only the older San Pedranos know. There was a time that when conch was so abundant that you could pick up enough of them right along the beach at knee-deep distance for lunch or supper. If you swam out about 300 feet out into the deep, you could load a dory with some 100 conch in one hour's time. At that time there were no restrictions on the size of conch, but the islanders never, ever captured small ones because of their abundance. One more thing, conch was very seldom used for ceviche. It was the main ingredient for conch soup, conch chowder, conch fritters which were dishes of the main menu.

    Belize Vacation Give-Away on a Postage Stamp
    The Belize Tourism Board (BTB) is celebrating World Post Day by giving away a vacation to Belize. October 9, marked World Post Day and the BTB is inviting people from all over the world to send them a postcard. In return, the BTB will not only reply with a postcard from Belize, but will also enter you in a raffle to win a trip for two to Belize. “We know travelers are very curious about Belize,” said Karen Bevans, Director of Tourism at the Belize Tourism Board. “So we want to connect them directly with warm and friendly Belizeans who know this country best.”

    Belize Red Cross Relief for Haiti
    Hurricane Matthew has made its mark by being the only hurricane to not lose its force winds even after hitting land. Many Caribbean countries such as Cuba, Haiti, Jamaica, and Bahamas have been affected by the storm. To give a helping hand to our Caribbean brothers and sisters in Haiti whom have seem to lost about 800 lives and having thousands affected and losing everything, The Belize Red Cross announced that the International Federation of Red Cross and Red Crescent societies have launched an emergency appeal for $6.9 million to provide medical, shelter, water and sanitation assistance to 50,000 people ravaged by the storm in the southwest portion of Haiti.

    Misc Belizean Sourcesmzz

    19th National darts men singles winner, 2016!!!
    The Sheriff!!!

    Island Magic Beach Resort in Caye Caulker seeks a qualified FRONT DESK employee
    Shifts will be 6am to 3pm some weeks and 2:00pm to 10:00pm some weeks. Key Requirements: Strong interpersonal skills Strong administrative skills High level of professionalism Effective in decision making Flexible schedule Task-driven individual To Apply: Please inbox Alina Saldivar to set up an interview

    Caye Caulker Destination Launch
    Thursday Oct. 13th, Allan Chan Conference Room

    Predusk rush at the Corozal Santa Elena border
    Just before nightfall yesterday, thousands of Belizeans returned home after their long Pan American Day holiday weekend across the Mexico border. Many Belizeans took advantage of Mexico's Riviera Maya slow season promotions in the all-inclusive resorts. Others ventured in the smaller destinations like Tulum, Puerto Morelos, Isla Mujeres, Cozumel and Mahahual. We ran into many Belizeans who took the short trip to Chetumal just for food, beverage, shopping and lots of fun. We hope everyone had fun and that your return across our Santa Elena, Belize border was hassle free.

    Belize Fishing Report: Oct 1- Oct 8, 2016
    A good solid week of fishing here at El Pescador. With the weather so calm it felt hotter than it was. The fishing gets a little tougher as well as the fish can sense the pressure wave coming off the boat. You could see a tail or a roll a mile away but it gets harder to get close undetected at the same time.

    BHA attends Expodestinos 2016 in Mexico City
    As a follow-up to last months FAM trip, the Embassy of Belize in Mexico invited the Belize Hotel Association and the Belize Tourism Board to promote Belize in their booth at the ExpoDestinos Mexico 2016 show, that was held in Mexico City on October 1 and 2, 2016. The Belize Hotel Association was represented by its Marketing Director Ms. Tessie Tonaco and the Belize Tourism Board was represented by Ms. Althea Sebastian-Travel Trade Officer and Ms. Jana Puga- Media & Public Relations Officer. ExpoDestinos Mexico 2016 , an annual consumer show, attracted more than 15000 attendees who were looking for vacation destinations and packages for their next holidays. The Belize booth was abuzz with visitors who were very interested in our destination, and inquiring about hotels and transportation options. Their proximity to Belize, and the possibility to receive packages and information directly from our BHA members, made it a very viable option for their next vacations. In addition, one of the travel agents who was in Belize on the FAM trip last month, Ms. Fernanda Marquez of TravelStore, visited us on Sunday October 2.

    The International Tourism and Travel Show- ITTS Montreal
    Held on October 21-23 at the Place Bonaventure, Montreal Canada. This three day consumer show welcomes up to 400 exhibitors and partners each year who meet with over 30,000 targeted visitors that have both the desire and the means to travel. The BHA has participated in the ITTS Montreal event in previous years, and it has proven to be a very successful show. In addition, the BHA has a vested interest in gaining a strong foothold in the Canadian market following the announcement of the new WESTJET flights direct from Canada to Belize, that will commence this October .

    PM Writes BNTU and Sets Meeting Date
    In a letter dated today, Prime Minister Rt. Hon. Dean Barrow wrote to the BNTU President formally requesting BNTU to return to the negotiating table

    TOURISM ARRIVALS CONTINUE TO RISE
    e BTB reports that since June of last year, the number of tourists coming to Belize has been steadily increasing. This September saw a dramatic 26.9% increase in tourists compared to September 2015. So far this year, the number of overnight tourists has increased 16.4% compared to last year, and despite fewer cruise ships coming to Belize since Hurricane Earl, even that sector saw a 1.3% increase.

    Breast Cancer Awareness Walk
    Everyone's invited! Let's spread awareness on breast cancer! All proceeds of this event will go towards the San Pedro Cancer Society. You can either walk or run! Check out the cool items from the Pink Package! (water bottle, tshirt and a cap + registration included!)

    Belize Branch BNTU
    Calling all Belize Branch teachers. We assemble at headquarters at 9:00 a.m. tomorrow morning for a day of solidarity. Bring your markers, bristol board and other chart making paraphernalia. Also we get updated on meeting date with PM.

    USSOUTHCOM Commander in Belize
    On September 28th and 29th, U.S. Southern Command (USSOUTHCOM) Commander, Admiral Kurt Tidd (third from left), came to Belize to meet with senior military and political officials of Belize, including Prime Minister Dean Barrow.

    Ms. Asia Gilharry represents Belize in Trinidad & Tobago in the Ms. East Indian Pageant for the Caribbean
    COEICH wishes Ms. Asia Gilharry all the best as she represents Belize in Trinidad & Tobago in the Ms. East Indian Pageant for the Caribbean. Thanks to the National Council of Indian Culture in Trinidad & Tobago, Mr. Arun Hochandani, Mr. Surujdeo Mangaroo, & Corozal Community College for supporting this cultural event. The pageant takes place on October 27, 2016.

    The BCCI (Belize Chamber of Commerce and Industry) issue statement to the Government of Belize
    will be proposed and voted on. Both resolutions seek for a one day shut down if certain demands are not met by the Barrow Administration. BCCI is the largest private sector membership based organization in Belize and according to its website it represents approximately 316 businesses across the country. BCCI's primary objectives are to foster the economic growth and social well being of the nation through the free enterprise system at all levels, by promoting and protecting, both nationally and internationally, commerce, and all sectors of industry which includes agri-business, tourism and manufacturing, the professions and the trades;To continually strive to enhance the Chamber's ability to better serve its members whilst operating as a self-sustaining, non-profit, non-political organization.

    Ecumenical Service and Candle Light Vigil in Corozal
    BNTU Corozal Town Branch is inviting all Corozaleños to an Ecumenical Service and Candle Light Vigil to be held tomorrow Wednesday, October 12th at 5:30 P.M. The Candle Light Vigil will begin at Miami Beach in front of St. Paul's Anglican School and will end at the Central Park. Parents, teachers, students, youth, and everyone who loves this community is invited to join.

    Teachers in Corozal
    While protesters in Belize City this morning, agitated against the teachers for maintaining their standoff, teachers from our Corozal Community engaged in various civic activities, including assisting the Belize Red Cross, Corozal Town Library and picking up garbage off our streets, playgrounds and parks. For this, we share our deep appreciation to our beloved Corozal teachers and volunteers who came out, despite the rainy weather. We caught up with this group of teachers at the Corozal Round House, cleaning the beach and surrounding areas, while other groups were working in different areas at the same time. Keep up the struggle, we stand shoulder to shoulder with your call for righteousness, good governance and salary adjustment.

    Corozal Sugar Cane Producers Association works with youthhttps://www.facebook.com/permalink.php?story_fbid=1808737352675965&id=1425967307619640
    The Corozal Sugar Cane Producers Association in conjunction with the Ministry of Agriculture holds seminar on Capacity Building measures by engaging the youth through agrobusiness. Congratulations to all the participants and the CSCPA for empowering our youth.

    Intermagia Magic Tour 2016
    The 2016 Intermagia Magic Shows are this weekend, at the Octavia Waight Centre. There are 3 shows on Saturday and Sunday, and a special adults only dinner show this Friday. Proceeds go towards local Rotary projects. "If you missed it last year.....you should make plans to get to the shows this year. There are eight new International Magicians for the show this year! Coming from as far away as Chili for this around the world tour, some of these entertainers have performed in Las Vegas. It is an truly entertaining and thrilling show! There will be three (3) Family Shows with Matinees on Saturday and Sunday October 15th and 16th. It's a full two hours of laughter and amazingly fun family entertainment! Rotary Club of San Ignacio has gone so much further this year......in presenting an "INTERNAGIA DINNER SHOW" which is for Adults Only on Friday October 14th starting at 7 p.m."

    Cayo Art Festival 2016 Call
    The SISE House of Culture is calling all local artists for the Cayo Art Festival. They are looking for arts and crafts to be on display at the festival, which will be on Saturday, December 3rd, at the Cayo Welcome Center. Contact the SISE HoC at 824-0783 for more information.

    San Jose Nuevo Palmar Cultural Fiesta
    Our Weekend getaway at San Jose Nuevo Palmar Cultural Fiesta - Benque Marimba Youths, Los Hijos Del West. We thanks the Chair Lady Mrs. Isabella Chi and the community for a warm Northern Love and appreciation towards this richful cultural exchange with the support of our Minister of Culture, Youths & Sports Hon. Elodio Aragon.

    WITH OR WITHOUT YOU: BELIZE'S BNTU!
    by Bilal Morris. When the words of the Reverend Dr. Martin Luther King comes back to haunt many of us human beings across this globe that, "silence is betrayal", we begin to find our bearings that the challenge to resist wrong no matter where it is, is to stand on the side of the poor, the oppressed, and dispossessed in any society including Belize. And as Dr. King would say, "injustice anywhere, is injustice everywhere." The present struggle of resistance by Belize's National Teachers Union, (B.N.T.U), against the Barrow administration and the stream of corruption that has engulfed the Belizean nation state over the three terms of its government has now began to weaken the bonds of what once appeared to be a strong mandate for good governance. It has began to become a show of declining confidence exemplified by the backbone of the Belizean electorate, a strong union that is an amalgamation of teachers, civil society, and the underserved people of Belizean society.

    TIDE Fish Festival 2016
    Celebrating the conservation efforts happening in Southern Belize!

    A Belizean Kriol Krismos Bram
    December 15 – December 17 at Battle Field Park. Creating a wiillingness to protect and preserve our history and culture through music, dancing, story telling, traditional games, food and drinks.

    The Belize Creole Brokdong Project
    Battle Field Park December 15th to 17th, 2016. A Belize City House of Culture and Downtown Rejuvenation Project Initiative. Creating a willingness to preserve and protect our history and culture through music, dancing, and singing.

    Belize City History and Social Studies Competition
    Thursday, November 3 at 9:30 AM - 11:30 AM, Bliss Center for Performing Arts. A Belize City House of Culture and Downtown Rejuvenation Project Initiative to create awareness and willingness to preserve and protect our history and culture among our youths.

    Channel 7

    Teachers Carry On With Strike, Bolstered by Caribbean Union of Teachers
    The countrywide strike by the Belize National teachers Union continued today affecting all church managed and government schools. Thousands of teachers stayed out of the classroom for the fifth day of their strike, and tens of thousands of school children in primary, secondary and tertiary institutions stayed home – as the strike went into its fifth day. And the news tonight is that it's going into day six. That's right, this evening at the BNTU's national headquarters the Belize District President delivered the announcement:… Kathleen Flowers - President, Belize Branch, BNTU: "Today's meeting directed them to continue the strike action. The strike continues into Wednesday and we do day by day activities and so because we know we have parents we have students, we have the committee at large that supporting us. We are saying to them we appreciate your support, we love having you on board with us and we ask you to stay the course with us because this strike action is all in the good of our nation."

    Luke Lambastes PM For NTUCB Suggestion; PM Proposes Thursday Meeting
    And while that was the message today – on Friday the teachers said they would only go back to the table if the Prime Minister wrote them a formal letter asking them to come back. That he did; by 6:00 pm on Friday, the Prime Minister had sent the BNTU a letter. In that letter he asked the BNTU to come back, but under the umbrella of the National Trade Union Congress of Belize – which is also pursuing the good governance agenda. Well, the BNTU has rejected that, and they want to continue their fight for good governance on their own. To address it directly, the President recorded his own statement over the weekend in which he stated clearly why they aren't prepared to dialog as part of the NTUCB. It appears to be a direct stinging criticism of the NTUCB when, in that message, he notes that the Prime Minister is trying disarm them. Palacio says, that the Prime Minister, has, quote, "sought home court advantage by kicking the ball into a new playing field, where he hopes it will have a softer landing"

    Noble Brothers Protest Teachers
    And brothers Fortunato and Alfonso Noble, and Allan Kelly aren't waiting for that meeting; today they went to picket in front of the BNTU Belize City Branch Office. They picketed the BNTU to say that they are not happy that their children have been forced to stay home due to this strike. We stopped by the 3-man protest to hear directly about that stance, and here's what they had to say: Alfonso Noble - Protester: "I have 3 children, my daughter, my oldest is in 6th form, my son is 2nd form at St. John's College and my middle child is in St. Catherine's Academy in 3rd form. Now 6th form my daughter has classes off and on meaning that some classes are held and some are not but by and large she is not in a regular class setting meaning that you go from one class period to another; so basically classes are interrupted. St. John's College, I dropped off my son at school this morning but I doubt they are having classes meaning they are just sitting in the classroom idling doing nothing."

    PUP Says Senate Committee "Bogus"
    So, while the Noble brothers and the Allan Kelly were out to tell the teachers that their continued strike is bogus, the PUP was also condemning the Government. They say that the Senate probe that is to look into the Immigration Reports from the Auditor General will be one big fiasco. They released a statement which says, quote, "The PUP is satisfied that the motion in the Senate on September 30th 2016 is invalid for the reasons: The Hon Godwin Hulse, Minister of Immigration voted on the motion when he should have abstained since his involvement in the scandals is a blatant conflict of interest. Minister Hulse's participation in that Senate meeting was unconstitutional as he violated Section 121 of the Belize Constitution. The motion presented by Senator Ashley Rocke was indeed a motion of the Government and was an attempt to deceive the Belizean people and the Senate, that it was a private member's motion. The motion was bogus; the voting was bogus; and the inquiry will be bogus." End quote. This evening, we spoke with PUP Senator Valerie Woods about it, and here's what she had to say:

    Hulse Calls PUP Release "Mischief"
    So the PUP have focused in on as UDP Senator Godwin Hulse as two of the three reasons why the motion passed by the Senate on September 30th is invalid. They say Hulse shouldn't have voted on the motion since his involvement makes it a conflict of interest, and, two, that Hulse's participation in that Senate meeting was unconstitutional as he violated Section 121 of the Belize Constitution. And what does Hulse have to say about that? He calls it pure mischief:. Hon. Godwin Hulse - Leader of Government Business in Senate: "Political mischief nothing more, nothing less; I am appalled that her majesty's loyal opposition who would form the next government will demean the workings of such a high institution as the Senate in which they serve. How on earth can you suggest that a motion that comes before the Senate that is properly debated, that is voted upon is a bogus motion when all the terms comply with the requirements of the constitution Section 61A. How can you be so abject, downright mean as to suggest that an officer of the Senate in the person of Reverend Senator Ashley Rocke who presented the motion that his presentation was bogus."

    Hulse Says Chamber Out Of Line
    And Senator Hulse also had a few choice words for his former colleagues at the Chamber of Commerce. He rose to national prominence as a senator for the business community – and he was a former president. But now the chamber is saying the same thing as the opposition: that the Senate Select Committee is bogus. And the chamber says that if they can't get it re-constituted, they're going on a one-day national business shutdown. The Chamber will meet tomorrow to decide on that but Hulse says that they too have it all wrong:… Hon. Godwin Hulse - Leader of Government Business in Senate: "I am appalled and surprised at the chamber. This august body on which I serve for many years and held together with some esteemed colleagues to bring it back to an institution of prominence from its dilapidated state in 1994. I was its president and past president; in 2005 and 2007 we went on the streets...."

    Chamber Writes To Institute of Accountants
    And the Chamber says is also threatening to strike if government doesn’t make immediate breakthroughs on key governance issues, such as the appointment of the 13th senator and the activation of an integrity commission. Of course, as the Chamber well knows, there’s been trouble finding an accountant to serve on the Commission because he or she would have to become a politically exposed person – with the requirement to disclose all their sources of income, among other things. The government hasn’t been able to find one for years, and now the Chamber of Commerce has turned to the place you’d think anyone looking for an accountant would turn to in the first place; that’s the Institute of Chartered accountants. A letter dated Thursday, October 6th asks the president of the institute in suggesting possible candidates to serve on the integrity commission. Those names will be forwarded to the Prime Minister – who – the letter notes can either choose to accept or reject them.

    Young Man Killed In Capital
    There were 3 murders over the long weekend, two in the west and one in the south. We start off with the murder of a 22 year old man in Belmopan. Ashley Clarke was out with Friends on Friday night but he never returned home. His family and friends went looking for him and found his decomposed body thrown behind a rundown motel on Sunday afternoon at 12:00. Courtney Weatherburne has more on this brutal murder. Darlene Clarke crumbles in grief as she tries to figure out why anyone would want her ‘Ash' dead. Her two nieces sit next to her to comfort her but they too are powerless to make the pain go away. Clarke was last seen on Friday night. He was hanging out here at the market with his friends, taking a few drinks. They then left after 10:30 and went to end their night out at this bar but when it closed at 12:00, they still were not ready to go home. Clarke and his crew then left the bar and met up here at this sign post to figure out how they will buy more liquor. That's when another friend on a motorcycle passed by and gave Clarke a ride.

    Homeless Man Murdered in San Ignacio
    And from a merciless bludgeoning of a youth to a senseless stabbing of a homeless man in San Ignacio. Early Saturday morning around 5:45 police found Benjamin Gomez’s body splayed on the bench at a bus stop on Joseph Andrews Drive. Gomez had been stabbed several times to the neck. Police are still trying to figure out what happened because they say there is no evidence to suggest that he was in a fight.

    Man Murdered In South
    Independence police are also trying to solve the murder of 21 year old Bella Vista villager Edilsar Mendez. He was found in a house in the village with injuries to his face and cut wounds to his throat. Police have one person detained for questioning.

    Child Burn Victims Receiving Treatment
    Last Friday, two young children were airlifted to Shriners Hospital for Children in Galveston, Texas after receiving major burn wounds to 90% of their bodies. Since then, the children, Ian and Empress, have been getting treatment for infections, surgery to replace their damaged skin, and dialysis while their kidneys recover from the burns. While nothing is for certain, the doctors at Shriners are reaming optimistic about the children's chances. And while Ian and Empress are getting the best treatment possible, they will have to receive treatment for their wounds for the rest of their lives, and donations are needed. Donations can be made to the Burn Victim's Mercy Fund at Belize Bank account 695-01-1-52111.

    Brothers Shot In City, One To Head
    A man is in critical condition at the KHMH after being shot in the head on Friday night. It happened at the corner of Raccoon and seagull streets, just two blocks from the police station. Brothers 23 year old Angel and 27 year old Florentino Ruiz were both shot by a lone gunman. Angel was shot to the chest and shoulder and Florentino was shot to the head. Today a relative – who lives with them told us what happened - but asked to appear off camera:… Voice of Family Member - Shooting Victim: "So when that person come close he took out his gun and fire shots at Angel and I think that when the shot catch Angel then it catch Florentino. I was inside when I hear 3 shot, everybody run outside and when we see that my brother is on floor it was done too late for me to help him to see who shot him so we don't know yet." Reporter: "Did Angel or Florentino have anybody who might want to hurt them?" Voice of Family Member - Shooting Victim: "No ma'am we no have no problem with nobody, we da person like we stay here; you see everybody works but we don't have no problem with no body, we no know why that person come and do that to our brother in law."

    Off Duty Cop, Soldier Shot On Friday Night
    That wasn't the only shooting on Friday night; one hour later Southside police would be responding to a shooting – and the victim was one of their own along with a BDF soldier – both of whom were off duty socializing. ACP Chester Williams gave us the rundown on both incidents – starting with the condition of brothers Florentino and Angel:.. ACP Chester Williams - Commander, Southside: "One was shot to the head and the other one was shot in the lower part of the body. They were taken to the KHMH where they are both admitted, one brother is in a stable condition and the other one is in a critical condition. About an hour thereafter information was received again of shots being fired in the area of Electric Avenue that is in the St. Martin's Depores area and again police responded to that scene and upon arrival they came across 3 persons who were shot; one Imane Palacio who happens to be a police constable who works here at Eastern Division South. There is a guy Romeo Luis who is a member of the Belize Defence Force, he got shot to the leg and there was one Ivan Martinez who was shot to the head. Palacio was shot to the abdomen and left leg. All person are admitted to the hospital in a stable condition."

    Coast Guard Comes Up with US Donation
    The Coast Guard has a new facility on their Headquarters off the George Price Highway, and it was made possible through a generous donation from the United States Government. The facility is valued at 4.46 million Belizean Dollars, and today, the Coast Guard and the US Embassy held an inauguration ceremony. We spoke with the Commandant of the Coast Guard about this new structure, which he says will be a multi-purpose facility. He outlined how the Coast Guard intends to use it: Admiral John Borland - Commandant, Belize Coast Guard: "This is a multipurpose, multi complex facility. You heard many people say it is a boat maintenance facility but it's a lot more than that. That was the initial intent but it evolved and it developed into being a multipurpose, multi complex facility. So now it's not only serves the purpose for both maintenance and repairs and servicing but also it houses some critical office spaces for the fleet commander, the sector commanders for station Belize City. It burkes which means it sleeps more than 100 people, it has a state of the art conference facility, it has bathroom facilities for all the people and staff that are going to be housed in this building so it's much more than just a maintenance facility. It came about as part of the coast guard strategic planning; it's in the long term part of our plans which is 2015 to 2020."

    Ambassador Carlos Ending Brief Stint As Diplomat
    We also learnt that today's conversation with Ambassador Carlos Moreno might be one of the last we have with him. That's because sometime early next year, he will be leaving Belize, his term ending the same time President Obama's does. The next US President will appoint a new ambassador which will have to be approved by the US Senate. As viewers are aware, the US election coming to a feverish pitch right now with less than a month to go, So Moreno, like the rest of that country's electorate, it just watching the clock run out on President Barack Obama's final term in office. We asked Moreno to comment on what could be his first and only stint as a diplomat: H.E. Carlos Moreno - Us Ambassador to Belize: "I serve at the pleasure and under President Obama. So when he leaves office my turn ends. Now whether it ends at the same time it's a matter of negotiation. The new president will have the privelage of appointing a replacement ambassador to Belize, that may take a period of several months depending on the relationship between the new president and which political party controls the United States Senate."

    Time For "Time And The River"?
    Celebrated Belizean author Zee Edgell released her book “Time and The River” in 2007. It is the story of slavery, rebellions, manumission and the complicated politics of love between slave and master. If all that wasn’t enough, it tackles another thorny issue: freed blacks owning their own slaves. It makes for a complex cocktail of what is called a neo-slave narrative, and perhaps all that attributed to the book being a commercial flop. In the words of author Zee Edgell, “it just fell” and that’s part of the reason she had a sort of re-launch today in connection with the “enSlaved” exhibition now ongoing at the Museum of Belize. She spoke to us about the book’s complex commingling of history and fictional narrative today: “Time and the River” is Edgell’s fourth and most recent novel. It took 10 years to write and research. Autographed copies are available through NICH.

    Tourism Numbers Keep Climbing
    The tourism industry is Belize's biggest foreign exchange earners, and at a time when citrus, bananas and shrimp are all suffering downturns, tourism is the only bright spot in an otherwise bleak economy. The BTB reports that since June of last year, the number of tourists coming to Belize has been steadily increasing. This September saw a dramatic 26.9% increase in tourists compared to September 2015. So far this year, the number of overnight tourists has increased 16.4% compared to last year, and despite fewer cruise ships coming to Belize since Hurricane Earl, even that sector saw a 1.3% increase. Tourism numbers are expected to continue to increase as direct flights from Toronto to Belize begin next month.

    The Integrity Issue
    On September 19, National Service Day, the PUP parliamentarians went to the National Assembly in Belmopan to declare their assets to the non-functioning integrity commission. That's the body where all elected officials from parliament, and all the city and town councils, are required to make such filings – just that no one does, because it is non functus. The law was designed on the principle of transparency to ensure that these elected politicians aren't unfairly enriching themselves. We have since learnt that PUP Senators Eamon Courtenay and Valerie Woods did not join their Opposition colleagues on that date of filing. So, while we had the opportunity today, we asked Woods, why she didn't do so. Here's how that conversation went: Hon. Valerie Woods - PUP Senator: "But for myself there's no mal-intent, I have every intention of putting up my report for the integrity commission whether there's one that exists or not I have absolutely nothing to hide. I'm a new comer to this thing it's just a matter of timing for me when that happen but I've assured the party leader that I'll get mines in, that's no big deal for me."

    Cops Get Props
    It’s rare that we hear of the good that officers do in their line of work, in most cases it’s tainted by complaints, vicious verbal attacks and harsh criticisms of the police department. Well, Eastern Division South is working on changing that negative perspective by awarding officers for their efficient police work. Assistant Commissioner of Police Chester Williams told us that this initiative goes along way. These award ceremonies are held every 3 months.

    Fantasy Five Winner “Noh Watch No Face”
    Denbigh Quenton Trimino Jr. a resident from Belmopan City is tonight a $150,000 dollars richer after his Fantasy 5 ticket had the 5 lucky winning numbers. Today Trimino Jr. travelled to Belize City to claim his winnings. The Public Relations officer for Fantasy 5 explained why they accepted the winner’s request in not showing his face. The winning numbers were 26, 13, 04, 17, 03 and the letter K

    Hon. Hulse Likes COMPOL
    Williams got police minister Hulse to lead today's event, and when it was done we asked him what's his take on the police department so far – since he took up the portfolio 10 weeks ago:… Hon. Godwin Hulse - Leader of Government Business in Senate: "The projection will be basically serious crime reduction that has got to be the goal and to do that there's some elements and units we have to strengthen. It is my firm belief that crime right now is being to be paying and we need to reverse that where crime doesn't pay. To do that we have to be able to take it to its end game of incarceration and due punishment for various crimes as the law prescribes." Jules Vasquez: "Are you satisfied with the current commissioner of police?" Hon. Godwin Hulse - Leader of Government Business in Senate: "Not looking at the office we're working with him quite well at this time. I understand he is a very young man and he has some time to go but as time goes along of course all positions do change, people are promoted, people are removed; so far so good."

    Channel 5

    B.N.T.U. strike action continues into seventh day on Wednesday
    The strike by teachers continue in the headlines tonight and we can confirm that the B.N.T.U. remains unmoved. This Wednesday, there will be a seventh day of strike action by [...]

    Prime Minister calls B.N.T.U. to meeting
    As we said there may be a resolution to the industrial action because just before six o’clock this evening, the Prime Minister responded to the Belize National Teachers Union in [...]

    B.N.T.U. gets support from the Caribbean Union of Teachers
    The B.N.T.U.’s strike got major support today from the region, the Caribbean Union of Teachers has written to the Prime Minister appealing to him to seek to bring an amicable [...]

    Cayo teachers steadfast as strike continues
    As the strike continues into its seventh day; across the country schools remained closed. In the west this morning teachers met for an update on the evolving situation. Their mantra [...]

    San Pedro teachers walk streets of La Isla Bonita
    Schools were also closed on San Pedro but it does not mean teachers were not engaged. This morning a sea of green overtook the island. Our friends at the San [...]

    Teachers’ Union should request N.T.U.C.B. meet, its president says
    Late on Friday evening, the Prime Minister upset the B.N.T.U. applecart by throwing into the mix the National Trade Union Congress of Belize.  The PM wrote to both saying that [...]

    Alfonso Noble pickets B.N.T.U.; asks that teachers go back to classrooms
    We’re not sure what to call this morning’s march from Cinderella Plaza to the headquarters of the Belize National Teacher’s Union in Belize City. Was it a protest – when [...]

    Ashley Clarke murdered in Belmopan
    It was a bloody weekend, three persons were murdered; in the nation’s capital, in the west and in a southern community. A violent confrontation between a group of persons socializing [...]

    Homeless Cayo man found stabbed to death
    A homeless person was also murdered over the weekend in San Ignacio Town.  The vagrant, later identified as Benjamin Gomez, was discovered lying on a bench at a bus stop [...]

    One charged for murder of Guatemalan in Bella Vista
    In the third murder, one man, Orlando Cedios, has been charged and will appear in court on Wednesday for the murder of a twenty-one year old Guatemalan national, Edilsar Mendez, [...]

    Five Belize City men shot in separate incidents
    The holiday weekend was quiet in terms of crime in Belize City, but it didn’t start out that way. There were two shooting incidents within minutes of each other in [...]

    Minister’s son got big money for prime land at Haulover
    Among the demands of good governance that the B.N.T.U. is agitating for involves the fight against corruption in government. Back in October 2013, Prime Minister Dean Barrow publicly admitted that [...]

    P.U.P. pulls out of Senate Select Committee on Immigration
    The People’s United Party confirmed via press release today that its Senator will not be participating in the Special Senate Select Committee on Immigration set to meet on Wednesday. The [...]

    Senator Valerie Woods says party is standing on principle, like Dean Barrow
    Is the P.U.P., like the U.D.P. did when it refused to participate in the 2005 inquiry into Social Security, hurting itself and the people of Belize by reducing the number [...]

    Chamber to go to Senate meeting under protest
    The senate committee has been established but its composition is of concern and so are the terms of reference. One particular vexing issue is that the committee would require authorization [...]

    Union Senator goes to Senate meeting; terms of reference a concern
    An N.T.U.C.B. senator has also been named to the Senate Investigation Committee on Immigration. This morning, the N.T.U.C.B. president said that after much debate within the Unions, Union Senator, Elena [...]

    Coast Guard issues challenge to sea pirates after kidnapping
    Over the weekend of October first, a group of fishermen from the north were robbed at gunpoint while out at sea in southern Belize. It was reported that the fishers [...]

    Youth drowns in creek in Belmopan
    A nineteen-year-old student lost his life on Sunday when he drowned in an area of Belmopan known as Rivera.  Gian Bethran, along with several of his friends, went swimming that [...]

    Driver charged in Unitedville hit and run accident
    Fifty-four-year-old Roland Garcia was arraigned in the San Ignacio Magistrates Court earlier today, following a hit and run accident over the weekend which claimed the life of a Unitedville resident.  [...]

    Fatal accidents reported in Ladyville and Orange Walk
    A fatal traffic accident between miles thirteen and fourteen on the Philip Goldson Highway shortly before ten-thirty on Friday night has left one man dead. Ladyville Police responded to the [...]

    Coast Guard gets keys to new maintenance facility
    The Belize National Coast Guard received a huge donation today in the form of a facility, personnel and other equipment valued at almost three million US dollars. With this new [...]

    Senator Valerie Woods to honour commitment to Integrity Commission
    On September nineteenth, National Service Day and the fifth anniversary of the passing of George Price, members of the People’s United Party in the House and Senator Paul Thompson attended [...]

    Author Zee Edgell re-launches “Time and the River”
    Zelma Edgell, better known by her pen-name Zee Edgell, is in Belize to re-launch her 2007 book “Time and River”, inspired by slavery in Belize. The novel focuses on the [...]

    Sports Tuesday with James Adderley
    Good evening, I’m James Adderley and welcome o the Tuesday edition of Sports Monday. Undefeated FC Belize took on a surging BDF team yesterday as the Premier League of Belize [...]

    CTV3

    BNTU Receives Support From Regional Union Body CUT
    The Belize National Teachers Union is in its sixth day of industrial action as negotiations over an overdue salary adjustment and good governance and reform issues have taken the national stage. While the teachers’ efforts have been effective in the closure of a majority of schools and getting parents not to send their children to school, and the Government’s efforts to denigrate the Union have gotten very little public empathy, the BNTU and teachers have gotten major support from the regional Union body known as the Caribbean Union of Teachers. The CUT wrote Prime Minister Dean Barrow yesterday, indicating that their body has been following the current impasse and that it stands in solidarity with the BNTU.

    LOVE FM

    Police Records 8 Deaths over Holiday Weekend
    The 3-day weekend saw seven incidents in various districts that claimed the life of eight persons. On Friday night just before eleven o’clock there was a road traffic incident in the area of Mount Hope in Unitedville Village, Cayo District that claimed the life of 37-year-old, Alfonso Albert Mendoza. Investigations show that Mendoza was riding […]

    Jairo Sosa Dies in Road Traffic Incident
    A fatal traffic accident on the Phillip Goldson Highway on Friday night left a twenty year old young man dead. Assistant Superintendent of Police, Juanito Cocom describes the scene when Police responded. JUANITO COCOM “Ladyville police responded to the scene of a road traffic accident between miles 13 and 14 on the Phillip Goldson Highway. […]

    BPP Harps on the Need for Re-registration and Re-districting
    Of recent, the Government of Belize has been facing much opposition and pressures via a torch for good governance led by the Belize National Teachers Union and picked up by several other organizations and individuals. While the BNTU has listed eight demands of good governance, the Belize Progressive Party has brought forth an additional demand […]

    Talk Show Host Wants His Children to Return to School
    While the teachers are out of the classrooms, Alfonso Noble was out picketing in front of the BNTU’s Headquarters in Belize City. Noble who is the editor of the UDP owned The Guardian Newspaper and TV Talk Show Host for “First thing Da Mawning” for Wave TV-also a UDP own entity, was accompanied by two […]

    New Building for the Coast Guard = Enhanced Operations
    This morning the Coast Guard of Belize held a handing over ceremony for a new building that the Embassy of the United States constructed on their compound. Admiral John Borland stated that the building was much needed to accommodate the operations of the Coast Guard and their expanding personnel. JOHN BORLAND “Today marks another milestone […]

    Fisherman Remains Missing Following Robbery at Sea
    A couple of weeks ago a group of three fishermen from the north of the country came in contact with armed robbers when they were fishing around sixteen miles from the coast of Dangriga. Two fishermen were able to escape, but one remains missing. The Belize National Coast Guard, commandant Admiral John Borland spoke on […]

    Minister Speaks on His Officers Charged with Extortion
    Two officers from the Orange Walk Police Department have been charged with extortion. The Officers are accused of extorting women who worked in brothels. The Officers allegedly had knowledge of people who were engaged with Human Trafficking but instead of helping the victims, made profit out of it. Today Minister of Police, Godwin Hulse commented […]

    Police Minister Identifies Priority Areas for Improvement
    Minister Godwin Hulse has spent his first six months as Minister of Police. He provided an update on his first month and the areas he has identified as priority. GODWIN HULSE ” Minister Hulse stated that he is looking to strengthen the Community Policing work of the Department which helps to reach out to the […]

    5 Injured in Holiday Weekend Shootings
    Two separate shooting incidents in Belize City at the beginning of the long holiday weekend left five men hospitalized. The first shooting occurred at the junction of Seagull and Raccoon Streets where two brothers, Angel and Florentino Ruiz were shot while the second shooting was on Electric Avenue where three including a Police Officer and a Belize […]

    GSU Confiscates 1121 Grams of Marijuana
    The Gang Suppression Unit made an arrest for over a thousand grams of marijuana earlier today. Reports reaching Love News are that members of the GSU were on Santa Barbara Street in Belize City making checks on an abandoned house but whilst doing a search on the lower flat of the house, they observed a […]

    Breaking Belize NewsPJ

    Caribbean Union of Teachers appeal to PM Barrow to seek amicable resolution to strike situation
    The Caribbean Union of Teachers (CUT) which is the umbrella organization for the Teachers’ Unions in the Caribbean, and affiliate to the BNTU, has written to Prime Minister Dean Barrow. In the letter dated October 10, 2016, CUT asked PM Barrow to seek to bring […]

    Repairs to low lying wooden bridge nearing completion
    Breaking Belize News visited the low lying wooden bridge earlier today and confirmed that repairs are almost completed. Despite being closed to vehicular traffic, the BBN reporter on the ground noted that pedestrians, bicycles and even motorcycles are already using the wooden bridge. The […]

    PM Barrow writes BNTU President
    PM Barrow has written to the BNTU President. In a letter dated, October 11, 2016, the PM wrote: “I first wish to again clarify the basis of my writing to invite the NTUCB to meet with me to finalize a joint position on the good […]

    NTUCB President’s calm and objective voice
    The calm and objective voice of the President of the National Trade Union Congress of Belize (NTUCB), Marvin Mora, is exactly what is needed at this time to help bridge the current impasse between the Government of Belize and the Belize National Teachers Union […]

    BNTU strike goes into 7th day; prayer vigils planned countrywide
    The Belize National Teachers’ Union (BNTU) branches and members have initiated a public awareness campaign. Today, teachers countrywide were engaged in community service activities, peaceful marches and distributing of flyers to educate and inform their respective communities about the BNTU’s Stand up for Belize […]

    Tragic Pan American weekend in Belize – 3 murders, 3 traffic fatalities and 5 shot
    While many Belizeans spent the Pan American weekend with families at home or vacationing in the Cayes, or Playa del Carmen, Cancun and other popular areas abroad, the Police had a tragic weekend to deal with. Apart from the drowning of a teenager in Belmopan, […]

    Update – Weekend teenage drowning victim is a UB student
    Following the breaking news of the drowning of a teenager in the Riviera area behind Quality Poultry Products in Belmopan on Sunday evening, BBN has confirmed that the victim is 19 year old Gian Bethran from Belmopan. Divers from the area retrieved Bethran’s body […]

    Governor General visits schools in Benque Viejo.
    Amidst the BNTU’s continued strike, today being the 6th day, the Governor General of Belize, Sir. Colville Young is out visiting schools in Benque Viejo. School children in Benque Viejo came out today carrying banners to welcome the governor general and thank him for his […]

    Small group of protestors demand end to teachers’ strike
    Four protestors marched from the Cinderella Plaza to the headquarters of the Belize National Teachers’ Union – all concerned parents who want an immediate end to the teachers’ strike. We counted far more police, about 20 officers, guarding the route and actually walking with […]

    WestJet to start flying to Belize in October
    Popular Canadian air carrier WestJet is now the first airline to offer direct service from Canada to Belize. Starting on October 29, 2016, WestJet will be operating non-stop flights twice a week from Toronto’s Pearson Airport (YYZ) to Belize City (BZE), the former capital […]

    Two men perish in Orange Walk traffic accident
    Police responded to an accident on the San Felipe Main Road between Miles 18 and 19 on Friday night where they saw the body of 25-year-old Abraham Diaz of August Pine Ridge a few feet off the road with head and body injuries. The accident […]

    Young woman from San Pedro missing
    Norma Rodriguez, a 50-year-old resident of Marina Drive in the DFC area in San Pedro reported to police on Sunday, October 9th around 5:45 p.m. that her daughter ; Naisy Naiady Chi, 21, who resides at the same address is missing. Rodriguez said that […]

    One man detained in connection with Belmopan murder
    On Sunday, October 9th around 12:05 p.m., family members came across the body of Ashley Clarke as they were trying to locate him because he had not returned home since Friday. He was last seen alive on Friday, around 11:30 p.m. socializing at a popular […]

    Thieves rob grocery store in Orange Walk; Take pistol and $3000 from store-owner
    On Saturday night around 10:55 p.m., Orange walk police responded to a robbery at the Sugar City Chinese Shop on San Andres Street. The owner, 45-year-old Dong Sheng Huang, reported that at 10:39 p.m. he was in his shop when two men came in […]

    Guatemalan murdered in Toledo
    On Sunday, October 9, Toledo police responded to a murder in Bella Vista Village where in a small room officers saw 21-year-old Edilsar Abimael Mendez, a Guatemalan laborer, lying on the floor with injuries to the his face and cut wounds to the throat. Police […]

    Canadian travel agents say Belize is “hot”
    Canadian travel agents and tourism industry officials, at a recent tourism-based focus discussion, said Belize is one of the most popular travel destinations now. Kim Tobias, a representative for WestJet Airlines, said tickets to Belize and Costa Rica have been selling very well this season. […]

    The Museum of Belize presents “A conversation with the Author”
    Today, the museum of Belize is presenting “A conversation with the Author” at the Government House from 9-11 a.m. The event features Belizean author Zee Edgell in a reading of her novel “Time and the River”. It features discussions of the novel’s connections to slavery […]

    BPP calls for additional concerns regarding good governance
    The Belize Progressive Party (BPP) issued a release reiterating its support for the Belize National Teachers Union (BNTU) in its effort to ensure that GOB adopts, implements, and adheres to Good Governance practices and principles. The party encourages all unions, civil society organizations, the private sector, […]

    Blogs

    Pen Cayetano Studio Gallery
    The Pen Cayetano Studio Gallery was opened in 2009 to showcase Pen and his family’s contributions to the arts. Visitors can peruse the hundreds of artifacts, paintings, and musical instruments on display at the gallery while learning more about the enormous contributions that Pen has made to the musical heritage of Belize. The Pen Cayetano Studio Gallery is located at 3 Aranda Crescent in Dangriga, Belize in Stann Creek District. The Pen Cayetano Studios Gallery is open from 9:00 AM to 5:00 PM on Monday through Friday. If you call ahead and make an appointment, it is possible to visit the gallery on the weekend. Be prepared to be dazzled by the rich tapestry of art produced by Pen Cayetano and his wife Ingrid, including drums made from turtle shells, paintings, crafts, and textile designs. Many visitors are fortunate to catch a drum workshop or musical concert led by Pen and featuring local artists. Gifts and souvenirs are on sale at the studio.

    The Farm House Deli: Soon to deli-delight San Pedro & Placencia
    Over the last few years, the daddy of Caves Branch Jungle Lodge, Mr. Ian Anderson has been perfecting his hand at creating artisanal cheeses. With exotic names like Old Brabander, Trappist, Italian Stallion, Spressa and Quark, the flavors are equally intriguing. I may not be a Maître Fromager (cheese expert – I looked that up on Google) but my taste buds tell me super yum when sampling these dairy delicacies! With all this talk of delicious possibilities you may be wondering just how the heck you are going to get to Belmopan to sample all these goodies for yourself…but do not dismay! On Saturday October 9th Ian Anderson held a farmer’s market at Mahogany Bay Village, Curio Collection by Hilton south of San Pedro Town, and to a champagne toast, announced that they would soon be opening a Farm House Deli on Ambergris Caye!

    Travel advice: Is a photocopy of your passport enough?
    I think most travelers have heard how it’s important to carry a photocopy of their passport when traveling. That’s valuable advice, both to help prevent having your passport pick-pocketed on the street, and also to assist with replacing a lost or stolen passport. But I had an experience this week that also confirmed the importance of having your passport and other key documents in digital form. I learned first-hand the value of carrying a photocopy of one’s passport some years ago while serving as Vice Consul at the U.S. Embassy in Suva, Fiji. A group of people, some Americans, but also folks of five or six other nationalities, showed up in my office one day. They had been staying at a guest house on one of the out islands and someone stole the guest house’s lock box, which held all the guests’ passports. What impressed me was how some of the non-Americans had photocopies of the information pages of their passports, as well as a copy of the page with their U.S. visa. This helped them obtain replacement passports from their home embassies, and it helped me verify that they had U.S. visas previously so I could more readily re-issue them with visas when they got their new passports. Other than the poor Germans, who had to wait three weeks for their foreign ministry to issue them replacement passports out of Germany, most everyone was able to get on their way again in less than a week, and those photocopies definitely helped.

    50 years of marriage and retired in Belize
    When we get married, we all hope to celebrate the Golden Wedding, 50 years with the love of your live, to have a successful background and living the ultimate dream to retire on a tropical island (and not every island, but the best in the world, Ambergris Caye in Belize) … only very few of us will have it happened… and yes, I know 1 couple who just experienced this: Bill & Kathy… WOW! CONGRATULATIONS, GUYS! I meet them in our community church and I loved their spirit, jokes and in same time how serious were about life… So, when they asked me to capture few portraits of them, on the beach, I was thrilled! I photograph them exactly how they are: full of life, laughing almost all the time, joking and being silly… Enjoy few of their beautiful images.

    International Sourcesizz

    If you are an American citizen living in Belize, and would like to vote in the upcoming presidential election, here is some info on how to register in your home state and how to vote.
    Don’t wait; return your voted ballot right away! Remember U.S. embassies and consulates are not polling places; same-day in-person voting is not available outside the United States. The majority of states require voted ballots to reach local election officials by the close of polls on Tuesday, November 8. U.S. citizens who want to participate in the 2016 U.S. elections should already have returned their absentee ballots to their local election officials. Never received your ballot? If you registered to vote and requested an absentee ballot prior to your state’s registration deadline, but have not yet received your ballot, complete and return a Federal Write-in Absentee Ballot to ensure your vote reaches election officials by your state’s deadline. If your regular ballot arrives later, complete and return it as well. Your Federal Write-in Absentee Ballot will only be counted if your regular ballot does not reach local election officials by your state’s deadline. Your vote will not be counted twice.

    New UN Initiative in Belize Highlights Importance of Education in Today’s Eco-Tourism
    A recent UNESCO educational initiative in Belize was a boon for the little country’s students and teachers, and highlights the importance of education to the nation’s growing tourism industry, according to The Lodge at Chaa Creek. Chaa Creek co-founding owner Lucy Fleming, a former educator who also directs Chaa Creek’s education and scholarship committees, said she was heartened to hear that this latest United Nations program, the UNESCO Global Micro-Science Project, was considered to be a resounding success, as education is a more important component of Belizean eco-tourism than many people would think. “In a small developing country like Belize, everything is interrelated, and as the nation’s largest employer, the tourism industry, has made major contributions to the quality of life for all Belizeans.

    Jaguars Interrupted: Counting Big Cats After A Hurricane
    This past summer, within days of gathering spectacular camera-trap footage of a female jaguar and her two tiny cubs sauntering through the Cockscomb Basin Wildlife Sanctuary in Belize, field scientists with Panthera, the global wild cat conservation organization, got the news that a tropical storm was forming and might just come their way. As the predictions quickly grew dire, Dr. Bart Harmsen, Dr. Rebecca Foster, and their team, did what they could to prepare: In the sanctuary, they relocated their cat cameras out of areas that were likely to flood, and outside the park, where the researchers live, they set about securing houses. Earl, a massive category 1 hurricane, made landfall in Belize on Thursday, August 4—battering Belize City and causing destruction elsewhere—including the 190-square-mile jaguar reserve. The next day, when the storm had passed, the anxious jaguar researchers were told they wouldn’t be allowed back into the park until debris had been cleared from the entrance.

    Unearthing an ancient city
    Indiana Jones has nothing on Anabel Ford. The daughter of a Hollywood actress and a world-renowned sociologist, Ford is the archaeological powerhouse who in 1983 rediscovered the ancient Maya city of El Pilar. Once home to a thriving population of more than 20,000 people, El Pilar straddles the present-day border of Belize and Guatemala. Lying beneath the lush canopy of the Maya forest, the city reached its zenith around 700 A.D. It is now protected as El Pilar Archaeological Reserve for Maya Flora and Fauna, encompassing 5,000 acres and an ancient Maya center that includes 150 acres of temples, plazas and palaces. Ford, who has been working in the Maya forest since 1972, came across the city site of El Pilar while doing survey work in the region. She spent the next three decades mapping, excavating and studying the site and its surroundings, and has made El Pilar a unique model of binational cooperation, community empowerment, conservation and preservation.

    Canada Agency Owners On What’s Hot
    Caroline Lavictorie, owner of Voyages Fountainbleau in Montreal, says her clients are “tired of all-inclusive and want a lot more a-la-carte-style” trips. Dubai is a very popular destination right now for her and it sells “like water.” Fellow agency owner Robert Townshend of Total Advantage Travel and Tours concurs about all-inclusive: “There is a movement away from all-inclusive; people want more of an experience,” he says. Kim Tobias from WestJet Airlines says that Costa Rica and Belize are selling very well this season, while Las Vegas has dropped off. She believes Las Vegas is more a discretionary-type trip.

    Videos

  • Teachers along with students and supporters march on the streets of San Pedro Town, 1min. In support of BNTU's nationwide protest in their demands for Government's good governance, transparency, and salary adjustment.

  • Jungle Horseback Riding in Belize, 1min. Ride on jungle trails in Belize's mysterious and enchanted rainforest where the Maya once ruled. A new world surrounds you as you ride under the canopy accompanied by the chirping of exotic birds which nests among an incredible variety of flora found in the area. Over 300 bird species have been counted in this area which is directly adjacent to the Cockscomb Basin Jaguar Preserve.

  • Belize Zipline, 17min.

  • Belize Excursion, 52min.

  • La fiesta del pueblo 2016, 5min.

  • Zee Edgell reads from "Time and the River", 1.5min. Belize's leading author read an excerpt from her 2007 novel at an event at Government House-House of Culture on Oct. 11.

    October 11, 2016


    FOR TODAY'S BELIZE WEATHER, CLICK HERE

    Click for our Daily Tropical Weather Report.

    Specials and Events

    Last night's TV news on Channel 7, Channel 5, LOVETV, PGTV, West Vision (Cayo) and CTV 3. Also with the most recent Open Your Eyes, Rise and Shine Morning Show, and the Dickie Bradley Specials


    Misc Belizean Sourcesmzz

    News Snippets from Belize Wildlife & Referral Clinic
    Aanother whirlwind week with follow up health checks and x-rays on Central American River Turtles at BFREE in Toledo, check-up on Tamandua patients at Tamandua Refuge and a return to BWRC for Howler Monkey Ivy's check-up with Wildtracks and an emergency surgery on injured baby coati.

    Walton Scholarship Opportunity
    It is a pleasure to inform everyone that the opportunity is here once again, to apply for the Walton Scholarship: The Walton International Scholarship Program invites suitably qualified applicants to apply for a scholarship leading to a Bachelor’s Degree in applicant’s chosen field of study. Successful applicants will be awarded a FULL scholarship to attend 1 of 3 universities in Arkansas, USA – Harding University, John Brown University & University of the Ozarks. Deadline: Application packages must be submitted by Monday, October 31, 2016.

    Have you heard of Unique Belize?
    This program empowers artisans like the the Chiac family of the Toledo District market their handicrafts. Great products for you or to give as gifts!

    Punta Gorda was the place to be this weekend
    Fish Festival at Toledo Institute for Development and Environment (TIDE)! Watermelon-eating contest, greasy pole, fishing competition and much more!

    The Farm House Deli new locations
    Over the weekend, owner of The Farm House Deli, Ian Anderson announced the opening of two NEW LOCATIONS for the deli in San Pedro Town and Placencia. The response has been overwhelming great and we look forward to serving you in the near future. Thank you for making both our Farmer's Markets a grand success!

    Crave House of Flavors
    Crave House of Flavors by Chef Alejandro is one of the best restaurants in Belize. Great food, and wonderful service in a small restaurant. If you haven't eaten there yet, you're missing out. Miss Belize Michelle Nunez, fresh off the plane from Playa del Carmen, had her celebratory dinner there.

    Cayo Women’s Conservation Group
    FCD applauds the efforts and interest from the women that have created the Cayo Women’s Conservation Group. We pledge to support them on their crafts and cohune oil ideas.

    Belize's YLAI participant Stephen Diaz enjoying himself
    In Alabama at the U.S. Space & Rocket Centre!

    The Reporter

    PSU still has no official position on supporting BNTU strike
    After a round of membership consultations, the Public Service Union (PSU) has still not taken an official position on whether or not it will support the Belize National Teacher’s Union (BNTU) in its strike action against the Government of Belize. PSU President, Eldred Neal, just concluded a countrywide tour of consultations with the PSU’s membership and some of the sentiments of the branches did not favor strike action; however, the PSU hasn’t come forward to say that it won’t strike. “We stand against corruption and for many of the things that the teachers are fighting for in principle, but the feeling thus far from the membership is that the situation doesn’t call for strike action at this time,” Neal said, speaking on the results on the meetings with the Orange Walk, Cayo and Belize City branches.

    Death toll in Haiti following Hurricane Matthew nears 900; expected to exceed 1,000
    The death toll after Hurricane Matthew pummelled island nation, Haiti, stands at almost 900. Aid is finally beginning to arrive for the affected areas, days after the hurricane cut off communication in some of the hardest-hit towns. Aid officials have reported that almost 90 percent of some areas of Haiti’s south had been completely destroyed. Focus is also now being placed on the department of Grand-Anse on the northern tip of Haiti, where the death toll and damage is believed to be highest. If this proves to be true, the death toll is expected to exceed the 1,000 mark since the figures officials have provided so far do not include Grand-Anse or other nearby areas.

    World Bank offers funding for climate change projects
    The World Bank is offering funding for entrepreneurs developing climate change technology. It is doing so through its Entrepreneurship Programme for Innovation in the Caribbean (EPIC). The program will fund projects which address climate change issues in areas such as energy, water, agriculture, transport, among others, that will either help countries adapt to, or minimize the effects of climate change. To help prepare candidates for receive funding, the Bank is working with participants in the Caribbean Climate Innovation Center’s (CCIC) Boot Camp and Accelerator programmes, which are part of the EPIC. Those participants will be among those to receive funding.

    Breaking Belize NewsPJ

    Haiti death toll soars to 1,000 from Hurricane Matthew
    A government official said on Sunday that Haiti has started to bury some of its dead in mass graves in the aftermath of Hurricane Matthew. In the devastated southwest of Haiti, cholera has spread and the death toll has now risen to 1,000 Haitians. This […]

    Belize celebrates Pan American Day
    Annually, October 12 is a public and bank holiday. It was originally known as Columbus day. Today, commemorated as Pan American day, it is a celebration of the migrations of the Mestizos and indigenous cultural groups from the Yucatan into Belize, creating the country we […]

    BNTU: We will not fall for “divide and conquer”
    Prime Minister Dean Barrow has accused the Belize National Teachers’ Union of insisting on strike action without properly consulting with Government on their eight-point agenda. To that end, he has sought to meet with the umbrella National Trade Union Congress of Belize, of which the BNTU […]

    Police confirm murder in Belmopan
    Belmopan police have confirmed that a man was murdered on Sunday night in the capital. Police have identified the individual as one Ashley Justin Clarke and said that he died from trauma to the head. No other details have been provided and police investigations continue. […]

    Blogs

    You Know You Live on Ambergris Caye, Belize When…
    Moving to Belize over nine years ago was an amazing thing. I’ve had the chance to immerse myself in a new culture, new music, new languages (Spanish, Kriol, Maya, Garifuna – depending on which part of the country you are in) and piles and piles of delicious Belizean food. To learn how to shop different, walk or hitchhike everywhere and drive a golf cart, fly or take a boat when I want to travel to the city and so many more things. Life slows down and changes when you adapt to life in Belize. That adaption is not without its tribulations. (15 Things No One Told You About Moving to Belize.) But you know that you have arrived, I think, when start doing the following:

    How I became a Millionaire on World Smile Day
    I love October for countless reasons, but one just jumped to the top of the list. Every year on World Smile Day we are called to “Do an act of kindness. Help one person smile”. Did you know that this movement was initiated by the creator of the smiley face, Harvey Ball? It brings a sense of comfort to know you did something nice for someone. Still, in my home our values call on us to do this on a daily basis. I don’t go to bed happy at night if I didn’t make at least one person smile throughout the day. So what makes World Smile Day any different, right? This year I decided to change things up a bit. I needed to make as many people smile as possible! In this heat I could only think of paletas! You may know them as popsicles. In our town the local ice-cream shoppe has been making them in different flavors, with real fruit, with or without milk, since as far back as I can remember. It’s like ice-cream on a stick and sure to make children of all ages smile.

    International Sourcesizz

    Visit Belize for the Price of a Postage Stamp
    The Belize Tourism Board is celebrating World Post Day with a special program: People who send a postcard to the Belize Tourism Board will not only receive a missive in return from a Belizean pen pal, but they’ll also be entered to win a trip for two to Belize. “We know travelers are very curious about Belize,” said Karen Bevans, Director of Tourism at the Belize Tourism Board. “So we want to connect them directly with warm and friendly Belizeans who know this country best.” In order to be entered in the contest, send a postcard anytime between now and Nov. 9th to the following address: Belize Tourism Board, Attn. World Post Day, P.O. Box 325, Belize City, Belize. A random winner will be selected Nov. 23rd and will be notified via a mailed postcard. Click here for the contest’s official rules.

    Putting a pricetag on conservation
    As habitat loss, climate change and human intervention continue to threaten our species, conservation takes on an increasingly important role. But that comes at a price. Just how high is it? The Chiquibul Jungle in Belize is regarded as a national treasure, but biodiversity in the vast wooded area bordering Guatemala is a complex thing. Conservation projects, including for imposing species such as the scarlet macaw or the jaguar - as well as the deployment of armed rangers to protect against poaching -are expensive. So exactly how much does Belize have to pay for wildlife protection, and where does the money come from? A film by Katja Döhne. Project goal: Biofin wants to find out how much it costs to protect biodiversity in Belize. Efforts are also underway to find possible alternative financing. Project implementation: Hannah St. Luce Martinez is country coordinator for Biofin in Belize and has been charged with establishing how much financing is needed where to protect biodiversity. Project size: The whole of Belize. The Chiquibul Jungle, with its 1,700 square kilometers of forest, is one of the main areas of implementation. Biodiversity: The Chiquibul Jungle is considered one of the most biodiverse areas in Belize.

    Videos

  • The Magician known as Spider doing his thing for us at Chon Saan Palace, 1min. The magicians are in Belize for the big Rotary Club Magic Show.

  • Snake Pit Belize 2016 diving, 12min. Belize 2016 diving in the "snake Pit". Moray eel takes a liking to my lens.

  • Belize Mixology's Love FM interview., 4in. Interview during certificate ceremonies on October 4th at BTEC.

  • Belgium's Christian Benteke sets World Cup goal record in 7 seconds, 1min. Belgium's Christian Benteke set a record for the fastest goal in a World Cup match -- either qualifying or the finals -- when he scored after 7 seconds against Gibraltar on Monday. The goal broke the previous fastest mark of 8.3 seconds set by San Marino's Davide Gualtieri against England in a qualifier in 1993. Benteke's feat was even more impressive because Gibraltar started with the ball in the centre circle.

  • We Believe in Belize Documentary, 8.5min. Find out the story behind the song "We Believe in Belize' in this short documentary about the creation and the reasoning behind the song. There are short interviews with Alida Sharp, Kudzae, Mervin Budram, and David Smith. "R&H Media caught up with team Roots & Honor and got their story behind 'We Believe in Belize' single release in 2015. We Believe was originally submitted to Love FM's raise the flag and win with Love song competition however the song has gone one to champion a greater sense of patriotism and love Belize."

  • Fresh Drop Sundaes, 3.5min. St. Andrew's youth group competes to see which team can prepare the best ice cream sundae ... in their teammate's mouth ... while dropping in the fixin's from a height!

  • Lobster tail Burrito in Belize, 1min. Enjoying some lobster tail burrito on San Pedro Island Belize.

  • HD video Barracuda fishing Belize, 1min. Northeast of Ranguana Cay just off the reef, fishing for Barracuda.


    Click here to return to
    Today's Belize News


    Commons Island Community History Visitor Center Goods & Services
    Search Messages CIG Info


    Copyright by Casado Internet Group, Belize