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6/21/2017 to 6/30/2017
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June 30, 2017


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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, and other specials


The San Pedro Sun

San Pedro starts celebrations for Dia de San Pedro!
The traditional island festivities of the anticipated ‘El Dia de San Pedro,’ have already begun on La Isla Bonita. The activities, which honour St. Peter (San Pedro) the Patron Saint of fishermen on the island, opened early on Thursday, June 29th with a fishermen’s mass at the San Pedro Catholic Church. Following the mass, a traditional fishermen’s breakfast was hosted at the Lions Den, after which, all the fishermen gathered in front of the Central Park for a boat procession that began at the municipal pier at 6AM. At the end of the procession, all boats and fishermen were blessed by Father Scott Giuliani.

Belikin National 8-Ball Pool Tournament completes third week
Last Friday, June 23rd and Saturday, June 24th marked week three of the Belikin National 8-Ball Pool Tournament at Barrel Bar. Four heated games within two days saw teams defending their standings. Team Amigos defended their lead, netting more points for a total of 44. Rack Dawgs was able to hang on to second place, while Twinkle Twinkle Little Stars fell to third place. The next set of games will take place in Caye Caulker, at Roses Pool Bar and Restaurant, beginning at 6PM on both Friday and Saturday this weekend.

Family reports killer bee attack
An Ambergris Caye family is happy to be alive after they survived an attack by a swarm of Africanized killer bees. The incident took place during Father’s Day on Sunday, June 18th, in Northern Ambergris Caye. Island resident Rudolph ‘Bonito’ Hernandez was unexpectedly attacked at his work place by the deadly insects. He and his wife survived; however, their German shepherd dog was not so lucky, and succumbed to the bee stings. Hernandez told The San Pedro Sun, the he is the caretaker of a property in Northern Ambergris Caye and shortly after midday that day, he and his wife, along with his dog, went to take a look at the property when the unexpected happened. “It happened so fast, “said Hernandez. I had tied my dog to a coconut tree and shortly after my wife yelled to me that our dog was under attack by the bees. I made two attempts to save him, but every time I would try the bees would come down on me.” Hernandez said that his dog died on the spot, while he was badly stung by the bees.

San Pedro Police issue Wanted Poster in connection to Felix Ayuso’s murder; Family to hold “Justice for Felix” Walk
It’s been almost five months since the brutal murder of island activist, Felix Ayuso. Since his death on February 1, 2017, his homicide has remained an open case, with no arrests made, and family members urgently requesting assistance from the San Pedro Police Department (SPPD). After launching an investigation, the SPPD was able to gather enough substantial evidence to isolate a suspect in connection to the murder. However, police initially advised the family not to release the suspect’s photo, as it would jeopardize and pose a risk to the case. After months of waiting, family members planned on releasing details and a photo regarding Ayuso’s suspect during a “Justice for Felix Walk” on Sunday, July 2nd. However, on Wednesday, June 28th, the SPPD released an official wanted poster for Vildo Westby, believed to be connected to Ayuso’s death.

NICH hosts workshop with media partners to promote and safeguard Belize’s cultural history
On Friday, June 23rd, the Institute for Social and Cultural Research (ISCR), in conjunction with the Institute of Archaeology (IA), and the National Institute of Culture and History (NICH), hosted a one-day workshop for media outlets at Belize City’s House of Culture. As culture is prominent in everything we do, ISCR, IA, and NICH discussed ways the media can advance the cultural agenda in Belize, hoping to open a dialogue and encouraging the media to help preserve and promote Belize’s heritage.

MOU signed between Microsoft and Government of Belize
On Thursday, June 22nd, the Government of Belize (GOB) and Microsoft Service signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) at an official ceremony held in Belize City. The agreement marked a new step in a long-term relationship between Belize and global technology giant (Microsoft LLC) to help in meeting the government’s National Digital Transformation Goals.

Coral Reef Ed-ventures program begins!
The first phase of the 18th Annual Coral Reef Ed-ventures summer program began on Monday, June 26th, and volunteers are still encouraging parents to register their children. The free, educational camp focuses on marine ecology, and is a collaboration between students from Smith College in Massachusetts, USA, and the Hol Chan Marine Reserve. The first segment of the program, which is geared for students ages 12 and up, will culminate on Friday, June 30th. The campers meet on weekdays at the San Pedro High School, from 4PM to 6PM. The next youth camp is for students aged seven to 12, and will run from Monday, July 3rd through Thursday, July 13th.

Ambergris Today

Celebration Of "Dia De San Pedro" Commences
The San Pedro House of Culture, San Pedro Catholic Church and residents of San Pedro gathered in front of the St.Peter’s Statue outside of the Catholic Church on Wednesday, June 28, 2017 to celebrate “Dia De San Pedro” St.Peter’s Day! The audience was delighted throughout the night by the Cultural group from Palmar, Orange Walk, The San Pedro Dance Academy, The Trio including one of San Pedro’s very own and The Mariachi.

No Protections For Threatened Belize Barrier Reef World Heritage Site
A press release from The World Wildlife Fund (WWF) indicates that the Government of Belizean has failed to implement promised protections for the Belize Barrier Reef World Heritage site. A 2017 Reef Scorecard has been issued and Belize is not scoring so well. OUR REEF NEEDS MORE PROTECTION! The WWF says that the Belizean government committed to UNESCO in 2015 that the necessary measures to ensure the reef’s protection would be implemented by December 2016; not all measures are in place yet.

Misc Belizean Sources

mzz

Feliz día De San Pedro / Happy San Pedro Day
This is Paradise. This is Life. This is Home.

BELIZE COAST GUARD OFFICER GRADUATES WITH TOP HONORS FROM THE UNITED STATES NAVAL WAR COLLEGE
Lieutenant Gregory Soberanis of the Belize Coast Guard (BCG) graduated from the United States Naval War College on the 16th June, 2017, after successfully completing the Naval Staff Course in Newport, Rhode Island, U.S.A. Soberanis, who is the first Belizean to attend the one-year version of the course, was elected class president during his time at the Naval Staff College and won the International Leadership Award for being the most outstanding overseas student.

TODAY, JUNE 30TH, IS REGIONAL TESTING DAY!
The Ministry of Health reminds the public that TODAY, JUNE 30TH, IS REGIONAL TESTING DAY! Get Tested! Take note of the testing sites in the promotional flyer below.

Bake Sale Fundraiser for Dianny Enriquez
Friday, June 30, Caye Caulker

Vacancy at BELTRAIDE – Projects Officer
Vacancy exists at Belize Trade and Investment Development Service for the post of Projects Officer. Kindly see the vacancy notice and, if interested, apply no later than Friday, July 14th, 2017 at 5 p.m.

Argentine Championship Permit Team arrives
Welcome to Belize - Argentine Championship Permit Team arrives and heading out to Tarpon Caye Lodge Belize! BELIZE is visited by tourists from all over the world and all walks of life. SAY NO TO OFFSHORE DRILLING!

Belize Represented at XLIX Summit of Heads of Government and State of the Central American Integration System
Belize attended the XLIX Summit of Heads of Government and State of the Central American Integration System (SICA) in Costa Rica from June 28th-30th, 2017, where leaders met to discuss regional cooperation, security and the continued strengthening of regional integration. Minister of Foreign Affairs Hon. Wilfred Elrington, representing Prime Minister Rt. Hon. Dean Barrow, congratulated the Government and people of Costa Rica for their leadership and welcomed the discussions and commitments made to regional integration, particularly in the area of security.

Enhancement of Manta Ray Street
Works have commenced on the enhancement of Manta Ray Street! Loads of white mall material now cover this street and will be spread and rolled by Ministry of Works. We appreciate your cooperation and understanding during this process. Please be cautious when traversing through Manta Ray Street.

Online sale of pharmaceuticals
As a general reminder to all - the online sale of pharmaceuticals in Belize has not been approved by the Ministry of Health nor has any license been given to any company to sell pharmaceutical products online in Belize. We are aware of a couple of websites that are seemingly doing so and we thank all those that have brought it to our attention as we aim to seek action. At the end, it is through collective and vigilant action that we will curtail practices that are simply wrong.

BATSUB Trackers get training from Astrum
Locally employed trackers from the British Army Training Support Unit Belize (BATSUB) were recently given training and instruction by local company ASTRUM Helicopters to enable them to deploy into the Jungle. The instruction included the use of winches on the airframes to gain access to the ground where the helicopter cannot physically land. These skills will enable the team to deploy with ASTRUM to prepare allocated sites for future exercises taking place in the training areas within Belize.

Living in Placencia, Belize: Paradise Found
Just where is Placencia? It’s about a three-and-a-half hour drive south of Belize City. Placencia town lies at the tip of a 16-mile long narrow strip of land known as the Placencia Peninsula. The peninsula, only a half-mile wide at its widest point, offers Caribbean beachfront to the east and a protected lagoon on the western side where manatees are often seen. Everything here is close to the water, and all along the paradisiacal peninsula on either side you’ll find restaurants, hotels and small resorts, individual homes, and all those new residential communities.In recent years especially, the Placencia peninsula has undergone a big boom. Building lots by the score have been sold to foreigners who think they’d someday like to live by the sea. (This is where you’ll find the most beautiful beaches of mainland Belize.) Beginning in 2004, condo development took off, and now some 1,500 condos are either under construction or planned, though all this development slowed dramatically thanks to the global recession.

PSE Stann Creek district SCHOOL averages
Note that PIA is on the last line, but received the highest school district average.

Miss Costa Maya 2017 Delegate – Kerelyne Isell Campigoti Webster Miss Honduras
Meet Miss Costa Maya 2017 Delegate – Kerelyne Isell Campigoti Webster, Miss Honduras. Age: 19 years old, Height: 5’9, Profession: Tourism Student, Hobbies: Collecting Postcards, & Playing Volleyball.

Caye Caulker Health Fair July 14
Caye Caulker Health Fair to be held on July 14th, 2017 also present will be Belize Medical Associates and Brodies.

Annual Regatta in Corozal Town
The Corozal Bay Sailing Club's Annual Regatta in Corozal Town will be held on July 15 at 12:00 P.M. and July 16 at 10:00 A.M. Two days of fun and lots of activities. See you there.

BECOL donated to FCD a 2012 Ford Raptor
To be used as a back-up transport and movement of heavy loads to the Chiquibul. FCD is thankful for the donation.

The San Pedro House of Culture launches a book on San Pedro for Dia de San Pedro celebrations

Channel 7

"Philloughby" Eyes The Mayor's Chair
The UDP has given prospective candidates for municipal elections until tomorrow to submit their names. As we showed you last week - 8 returning candidates from the Belize City Council submitted their names early. But, the two-term Mayor of Belize City, Darrell Bradley has not submitted his name - and reports from within the council quote him as saying that he won't run again because his wife doesn't want him to do so. When we asked him about that off camera today - he didn't deny it. Of course, this is a familiar pattern for Bradley who kept going back and forth on the issue before the last election - and then eventually submitting his name for mayor weeks after the deadline has passed. In that case, Dion Leslie - who had already put in his name - was forced to step aside and make way for Bradley. But, this time around it looks like Phillip Willoughby may be the one who wants to jump the queue and zoom to the top spot. Willoughby told us last week that he was waiting for the result of medical tests to see if he would be running again as a councillor. Today we asked him about those test results - and he played it very cagey:...

Chopping Murder In San Joaquin, Corozal
Tonight, Corozal Police are on a manhunt to locate this 34 year-old Corozal man, Arturo Tamai Tzul. He is their main suspect in a chopping murder, which happened early this morning in San Joaquin Village. The victim is 21 year-old Salvadoran Amilcar Omar Moralez Gonzalez, and police say that he was riding home with his 20 year-old Belizean friend, Doniver Ruano. On the way, they met a girl who was walking. They struck up a conversation with her, and that's when Arturo Tzul appeared. A confrontation started shortly after and Tzul ended it when he chopped both men to the neck.

Security Camera No Help In Big Money Robbery At Ranchito Airstrip
The press also asked Sergeant Valladarez for an update on that heist in which a Indian businessman was robbed at gunpoint of $54,000 cash in Ranchito Village. It happened last Friday evening when the Corozal Store Manager, Avinash Deshmukh, came back from collecting the money from his wholesale and retail business in San Pedro Town. He landed at the Ranchito Airstrip, and was just about to get into his vehicle, when 2 men jumped out of a vehicle parked behind him. They held him up at gunpoint and stole the backpack he was carrying the money in. Before fleeing the scene, they struck him in the back of the head with the weapon The the CIB's Commanding officer from Corozal told the media that they have seen surveillance footage of the robbery in progress, but it does not help them much:

Carnival Road March Might Have To Move Because It's Blocking access To Hospital
The Belize City Carnival Road March is always a highlite of the September Celebrations - but this year the Carnival might be in for a major change. That's because health and safety advocates say that using the current route, which passes in front of the KHMH blocks road access to the country's largest hospital and emergency room. More than that, it creates all kinds of safety hazards with drinking and crowds and loud music in front of a hospital. The consultations to find an alternate route are ongoing - and the city council is just one of the stakeholders. And while the decision ultimately rests with the Carnival Commission, today councillor Phillip Willoughby - who has been meeting with them - discussed the proposed alternate route:...

Club-owners Make Noise At Mayor's Press Conference
Moving unto other municipal matters, Mayor Darrell Bradley held a press conference today to discuss a few major developments with city hall. But first, he had to address the issue of noise abatement. That's the controversy which erupted last week after a public consultation. Residents of Newtown Barracks said that the many nightclubs and bars and the area were a public menace. That's when the mayor laid down the law: no more extensions for opening until 4:00 am for venues which are not soundproofed, and no more bars masquerading as nightclubs. Since then he's been criticized for putting an early end to the party in an area that he designated as an entertainment zone. And today at the press conference, one of his own councillors took a seat with the press to remind Bradley that the persons who frequent those clubs form an important voting bloc. Here's how that back and forth went:...

Mayor Retreats From Hardline On Concerts At Hour Bar
And while the nightclubs are one thing - another popular spot in that same entertainment strip is The Hour Bar. That's Belize City's top concert venue but the mayor sent a memo to his councilors saying that concerts should not be held there - and definitely not until 4:00 am. Today, faced by one of those promoters, he seems to have backed down somewhat from that hardline - and said that some concerts are ok:... Darrell Bradley, Mayor: "The law does provide that a special event can go as long as 5am in the morning. One of the things I will say with the public consultation is that none of the people in that consultation said that they don't want these events. There is I think on the point of the residents themselves some reasonable expectation that you know what September, December - if we have to go somewhere else we are going, if we have to go at the event then we are going, but we can live with it as a special event, as a one-off concert. But don't let it be Wednesday, Thursday, Friday, Saturday and then Sunday, because when would I sleep."

City Council Moving Full Speed Ahead With Plan For New City Hall At Old Commercial Center
And while those were the controversial subjects - the mayor really held his press conference to brag about that commercial loan which the city council got to renovate the ragged commercial center. The Mayor said the old commercial center will become the New City Hall:.. Darrell Bradley, Mayor: "And this building will become in a very short period of time, it will become the new city hall. Second floor and third floor will housed city council offices. The ground floor will hold a big auditorium for us to have public hearings, so that we mean to transform city council meetings into a public hearing, so that all of our city council meetings will be a public hearing. Surrounding the building also there will be a "park..."

New Fee Structure For Trade Licenses Established, Mayor Likes It/Hates It
And the first subject discussed at today's press conference were the changes in the structure for assessing trade license fees. It's legislation drafted out of a three year review at the municipal and central government level. The bill has already gone to the house for a first reading, and after revision by the House Committee, the Mayor today presented the full and final schedule of fees. He said he's not a fan of the system that the lawmakers used - but then went unto call it "magic." You decide: Darrell Bradley, Mayor: "According to this table every business should experience according to the table as much as a 30% reprieve. The reform that has been undertaken is not something that are one hundred percent comfortable with. What you have is a bridging. There is still a range in relation for the fee, but there is a great degree of certainly to it, because there is fix fee."

Mayor Denies Massive Arrears To Sanitation Company
And so if the city is going to lose a significant chunk of its revenue, it has to find ways to replace it - and fast! We say that, because, from the looks of things, the Council is already struggling and juggling to keep current with its weekly sanitation expenses and bi-monthly payroll. Today we asked the mayor about mounting arrears to Belize Waste Control:..,. Jules Vasquez: "I am reliably told that right now you owe quarter million to Belize Waste Control for 5 weeks of unpaid garbage fees. I am told that payroll is here and you don't have a lot in the bank to handle your payroll." Darrell Bradley, Mayor: "The city administrator has inform me that we are 3 weeks in arrears with Waste Control. The contract provide is a leeway or reprieve to be 4 weeks in arears, so that it's not an anomaly that we would be in arrears with them."

Ady, Again
As we showed you last night, Immigration Officer Ady Pacheco's had her second day of testimony before the Senate Select Committee. She explained that the Department was lax in trying to filter out fraud and forgery - giving way to all kinds of irregularities. But, Pacheco also had another interesting claim. She says that Cabinet did away with the security clearance process for persons trying to apply to the Immigration Department for those Belizean documents. Now there's always the concern of human trafficking, where it has long been suspected that immigrants may want to use Belize as a spring board to get into the United States. Then, there is the rising concern of terrorism, extremists, and international fugitives. Pacheco says the process to screen applicants for security concerns like those was discontinued at Immigration because Cabinet gave a directive:

The Many, Many Missing Passports at Immigration
The Senators also asked Pacheco about a separate security concern that the Auditor General brought up in her reports. Her audit says that there are hundreds of passports which are missing, and possibly stolen, yet, the Department did not keep a careful record of them. Her audit shows that there are 500 which her team knows for certain were stolen in 2004. Then, there are 50 more were stolen but those have been accounted for. There are also about 681 more which are unaccounted for, and may have been stolen; nobody knows for sure. The auditors checked into the passport ID numbers of the stolen passports and realized that the Department performed passport renewals for several of them. That shouldn't have happened, and so, the Senators wanted to know why nobody realized that this happened. Here's how Pacheco answered those questions:

Soberanis Shines
Tonight, the Ministry of Defense is publicly congratulating one of the high ranking members of the Belize Coast Guard for continuing his education. He's Lieutenant Gregory Soberanis, and for the past year, he had been attending the United States Naval War College in New Port, Rhode Island. The Ministry says that he is the first Belizean to attend the 1-year version of the course, and he was elected the class president. After completing the course, he won the International Leadership Award for being the most outstanding overseas student.

Wilfred Seen At SICA
Yesterday Minister of Foreign Affairs, Wilfred Elrington traveled to Costa Rica to attend the 49th SICA Summit of Heads of Government and State. According to a press release, Elrington participated in discussions about furthering regional cooperation and security, while also expressing concerns about other extra-regional challenges. In particular, the Minister spoke about his concern with recent United States policies regarding immigration and climate change, and the possible negative effects they can have on the Central American region.

Fisherfolk, The Salt Of The Sea
This month the fishing industry has been celebrating Fisheries Month to raise awareness and celebrate the contributions fishers make to Belizean society. The fisheries industry accounts for about 3% of Belize's GDP, employs thousands of people, and is the the country's 4th largest exporter. Fisher folk also contribute greatly to the conservation of our marine life and protected areas. Today, the Fisheries Department and the Caribbean Regional Fisheries Mechanism held a ceremony to celebrate Belizean fishers who have made great strides in providing food for the country in a sustainable and ethical way. Here's CRFM's Executive Director, Milton Haughton and And Eleodoro Martinez, one of the awardees, about the importance of sustainable fishing...

Ciao Chester!
He's moving on up to headquarters in Belmopan, and ACP Chester Williams got a proper send off today from his fellow officers at Eastern Division. A ceremony was held at the Raccoon Street Police Station to honor him for his work on the Southside for the past two years. In his farewell speech Williams had a special parting message for the Southside gangs and his colleagues.

Belize's Workforce Uneducated (Mostly)
Last night we told you about the unemployment rate which had increased from eight to nine percent over the last year. But, the labour force has also grown to 164 thousand persons. Yet, only 135 thousand of them have some kind of formal education. Alarmingly, more than half of them only have a primary school education. Here's the breakdown:... Curwen Arthurs - Statistician I, SISB: "Looking at education, about 135,113 persons had some formal level of education. Meaning that they either had completed primary, secondary or tertiary level of education. Of this 135,000 persons, about 52.2% of them in the labor force have completed a primary level of education. 26% secondary level, 21.6% tertiary and the other group comprising of schools like Stella Maris and other schools like these would comprise about 0.2% of the 135,000 persons in the labor force."

Transport Drove Up Inflation
Yesterday's press conference by the Statistical Institute of Belize also presented the latest figures on inflation. As we told you last night it's 1.7% for the first five months of the year. The main driver for that is higher transport costs, while food prices were down. Here's more:... Inflation was highest in Dangriga Town at 2.4% and lowest in Punta Gorda at 0.6%.

Channel 5

Mayor Darrell Bradley Challenged on ‘Strip’ Enforcement
This morning, business owners and promoters gathered at City Hall to take on Mayor Bradley in open forum, following last week’s abrupt decision to enforce noise abatement regulations within the [...]

Trade License Fees to be Standardized
The mayor also announced today that the City Council will be introducing a new trade license regime in the coming days.  According to Mayor Darrell Bradley, the new system will [...]

Losses Can Be Made Up
It is estimated that the municipal government stands to collect one million dollars less; monies which Mayor Bradley says will be realized through other means.  One option to regain those [...]

San Joaquin Rocked by Murder; Suspect on the Run
A villager from San Joaquin, Corozal, this morning lost his life in a horrific way. He was attacked with a machete and chopped to the head.  Twenty one year old [...]

Video Review for Businessman Robbed at Airstrip
On Monday, we told you about the store manager who was robbed over the weekend by two men who lay waited him at the airstrip in Ranchito, Corozal. Today, police [...]

U.S. Frowns on Belize’s Human Trafficking Record
Four years ago, Belize ranked among the Tier Two nations in the U.S. State Department’s Trafficking in Persons report. This year, we have been named as the worst trafficking offender [...]

Chester Says Goodbye to City; Will He Leave Police Department Too?
ACP Chester Williams formally bid farewell to Belize City this afternoon during an official sendoff organized by his colleagues at Eastern Division South.  The respected top cop assumes a new [...]

Ex-Gangsters Participating in Truce Told to Stay the Course
Williams’ departure from Belize City has raised serious concerns about the fate of the existing gang truce which was struck several weeks ago with various rival groups.  Those individuals have [...]

Commercial Center Readied to Become New City Hall
The eyesore in downtown Belize City that is the decrepit commercial center is getting a much-needed makeover in the months ahead.  The long-delayed renovation project has finally been given the [...]

How Businesses Can Survive Natural Disasters
As the first month of the hurricane season comes to a close and families and businesses count the daily cost of other kinds of natural disasters, one of the key [...]

Why Did Cabinet Stop Security Clearance Checks for Nationality?
Immigration Officer Ady Pacheco, as we showed you on Wednesday, was extensively questioned about the process of work at the Department. In the time when she handled permanent residence, she [...]

Immigration Kept in Dark About “Fake” Belizeans
Earlier in this newscast, we told you of the U.S.’s disappointment in how Belize is handling the issue of trafficking in persons. It also came up at the Senate in [...]

A New Way to Finance Green Small Businesses
The majority of businesses are micro, small and medium enterprises, known as MSME’s. These businesses help drive the engine of an economy and provide jobs especially at the start-up level. [...]

Sarteneja’s Leobihildo Tamai is Fisher of the Year
Recognition was given today to fisher folks for their contribution to the growth of the fishing industry, which directly benefits at least four percent of the population. Three fishermen were [...]

Tourism Board Woos New Visitors
The Belize Tourism Expo organized an online forum today connecting local tourism stakeholders to international agents. The event at the Biltmore Plaza is a cost effective way to attract visitors [...]

Situation Comedy ‘Livin Mi Life’ Comes to Belizean T.V.
“Livin’ Mi Life” – it’s a Belizean produced sitcom that’s been directed and shot right here in the City. Producer Kim Vasquez, who worked on the well-known “No Matta What” [...]

Why Men Must Get Tested for HIV
On Friday in eight locations across the country and many more across the Caribbean, testing sites will be open for Regional Testing Day. This public/private sector regional collaboration is in [...]

PlusTV

Addy Pacheco says no process for verifying documents was in place
Addy Pacheco was back before the Senate Select Committee today. Last week, she had laid blame for the acceptance of incomplete applications at the feet of her Officer In Charge and others up in the rank and file of the visa application process. She said she was there only to accept applications and ...

Man electrocuted in Placencia
A man was electrocuted in Placencia today. Information is that 32 year old Ralston Williams, a Belizean construction worker of Santa Cruz village, fell from the roof of a two storey building when he was pulling up an aluminum pipe. The pipe apparently touched a high tension wire nearby and electr...

Anthony “Boots” Martinez’s scheduled testimony postponed
Minister Anthony ‘Boots” Martinez was scheduled to appear before the Senate Select Committee today. Minister Martinez’s name was mentioned in the Auditor General’s report in relation to his recommendation for the processing of a visa for an Asian national. However, Hon. Martinez was told that his ...

200 passports issued to Pacheco went missing
Addy Pacheco was today’s sole witness at the Senate Inquiry. As we have mentioned, Ms. Pacheco featured prominently in the Auditor General’s report as the person who signed off on several applications with invalid documents in some instances as well as incomplete documentation in others. Ms. Pacheco...

D.O.E. supports Belize City Mayor’s decision on noise abatement regulations
Last week, Belize City Mayor Darrel Bradley issued a memo that the regulations and licenses as they pertain to night club music ceasing at midnight should be enforced. This was in specific response to complaints aired out at consultations with businesses and residents in the area of the B.T.L. park....

Belize is worst human trafficking Offender in Central America
Belize is the worst human trafficking offender in Central America . That is according to the US State Department’s 2017 Trafficking in Persons Report. The report, released on Monday June 26th, says that “Belize is a source, transit, and destination country for men, women, and children subjecte...

Gian Espadas out on bail following for drug trafficking charge
22 year old Gian Espadas was arraigned on charge of drug trafficking on Tuesday . Police arrested Espadas on Monday morning when members of the Mobile Interdiction Team were conducting routine mobile patrol on north side Belize City in the West Landivar area. They stopped a gold Kia spectra which E...

“Boots” says UDP will win Municipals
Yesterday, we shared with you the Leader of the People’s United Party’s take on the upcoming municipal elections which are some 9 months away. According to the PUP leader, he believes the PUP will have the victory at the polls even though those he has personally canvassed so far have expressed fear...

The Guardian

Cop caught lying on the ground in full uniform
The police department’s Professional Standard Branch is investigating a case of a police constable who was caught on video at the Belmopan bus terminal lying on the ground in a disoriented state. The officer identified as Police Constable Florencio Rash is attached to Precinct 1 in Belize City.

Senate probe sucks half million dollars in expenses
The Guardian Newspaper has confirmed that every single time the Senate Select Committee meets it costs the government a whopping $15,000 per session. We understand that for every meeting Krem Radio is paid a handsome $1,500 per session. Additionally The National Channel is likewise paid $1,500. That is in addition to some $5,000 which is paid to the staff for additional work they put in during the meeting within that includes payments to the staff of the National Assembly as well as staff of the Press Office. Other expenses include security provided by police as well as mileage which is paid to the Senators who attend the meetings. All told each and every meeting is costing the Government of Belize in the region of $15,000 per session.

Microsoft and GOB sign MOU to minimize corruption
Belize’s 10 year relationship with Microsoft has recently experienced an additional new feature. On June 22, 2017, the Government of Belize entered into a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) with the software company, the largest of its kind in the world. Although Belize has always been a Microsoft customer, we have never before been a customer in this light.The latest relationship will serve in reaching the government’s National Digital Transformation Goals. The company, through the Central Information and Technology Office (CITO), will develop the country’s e-government capacity. According to Angelo Chirico, General Manager of Microsoft Service for Latin America, this partnership will enable government offices to increase efficiency and effectiveness while being practical and economical.

NEMO Minister opens Caribbean and Latin American Workshop for Micro, Small and Medium-sized Enterprises on Continuity of Business and Operations after Disasters
Minister of National Emergency Management Hon Edmond Castro delivered the opening address at a workshop for micro, small and medium-sized enterprises (MSMEs) in the Caribbean and Latin America on continuity of business and operations after disasters, which got underway on Wednesday at the Best Western Belize Biltmore Plaza Hotel in Belize City. The workshop is conducted in compliance with the Work Programme for 2017 approved by the Latin American Council of SELA (Sistema Económico Latinoamericano y del Caribe).

BEL has another record-setting year
Belize Electricity Limited (BEL) held its Annual General Meeting (AGM) on Wednesday, June 21, 2017 to report to shareholders on the Company’s performance and achievements for the year 2016 as it pursues its Vision to become A Model of Excellence. BEL outperformed its 2016 financial targets, following four consecutive years of stellar performance, with net earnings of $27.3 million. Shareholders were rewarded for their confidence in the Company with dividends declared of $0.29 per share or $20.3 million.

Boats for the Police Department
The Police Department has received a very generous donation from the US Embassy in Belmopan. They now have 3 boats, and these maritime assets will be used by the Anti Narcotics Unit (ANU), which was once known as the Anti-Drug Unit (ADU). It’s a donation worth US $449,000, almost a million Belize dollars. These vessels are 3 Colombian boats which were seized by Belizean law enforcement, 2 by the coast guard, and 1 by the Anti-Narcotics Unit. They were then transferred to the US Embassy, and their law enforcement professionals retro-fitted them with state-of-the-art electronic communications and navigational equipment.

PUP does not want Minister Martinez to testify
The latest Senate Hearing on Immigration happened on Wednesday, June 28, where Immigration Officer Ady Pacheco was called back to finish up her testimony. Her name is called out - probably - the most of all the public officers who were working at the Department during the period that is under the Audit review. So, the Senate Select Committee called her back to answer a few more questions, but they also summoned UDP Minister Anthony “Boots” Martinez. He was supposed to give testimony, but for some unexplained reason, the Committee informed him that their schedule had changed. He was dismissed and told that he will be summoned to return at a later date. Of course, the very busy Minister of Government and Area Representative was unhappy that he cancelled all important work he had scheduled, just so that he could comply with the Senate’s summons.

DOE says there are laws against noise
In relation to the current debate on the “entertainment strip” in the area of Newtown Barracks in Belize City and the issue of NOISE POLLUTION being experienced for some time now by residents in the surrounding area, the Department of the Environment (DOE) supports the Mayor of Belize City and the Belize City Council in enforcing legislation that exists to ensure that there is a balance between the economic development of Belize and a healthy environment for all. As a Government Department that stands by its motto “Balancing Development and the Environment”, the DOE believes in the economic/commercial development of the community, but not at the expense of the very same citizens we are here to develop and protect. This specific area in question has been a challenging location for the DOE on the issue of noise pollution.

EU funds capacity building in the technical vocational education and training (TVET) sector
The Ministry of Economic Development & Petroleum and the Ministry of Education, Culture, Youth & Sports have signed a contract with GFA Consulting Group of Germany for BZ$2.6 million for a TVET Capacity Building and Professional Development Training Programme. The GFA Team has mobilized to Belize to begin the inception phase of this 18-month contract with their partners, Sequa of Germany and the University of the West Indies. This Training Contract, funded by the European Union under the Banana Accompanying Measures 2013, has as its objective to increase the capacity of TVET Management and Instructors in the northern Toledo and Stann Creek Districts to deliver quality training to students.

FFB fails to have presidential elections
The Football Federation of Belize could not hold its 10th ordinary congress over the weekend because majority of the congress members protested and refused to show up. So, at press time tonight, the FFB continues to be governed by an executive that is forced to carry on with the business of the richest sporting federation in the land. There were two important agenda items which couldn’t be addressed. First, the Congress was supposed to elect a new executive to run the Federation for the next 4 years. Also, the Federation needed its budget funding approved by the congress members to run its functions, but because the congress had to be canceled, there is now uncertainty about funding to carry out its business.

Students graduate from GREAT in San Ignacio
The San Ignacio (Police) Formation held a graduation ceremony on Wednesday, June 21, 2017 for the largest cohort of students completing the Gang Resistance Education and Training (GREAT) program. According to Richard A. Rosado, Officer in Charge of the San Ignacio Police Formation, this is a testament to the formation’s commitment to the expansion of the Commissioner of Police’s community outreach programs. A total of seven hundred and fifty (750) students completed the training.

BDF graduates helicopter pilots
The Belize Defence Force (BDF) will hold a Graduation Ceremony to honour four (04) Pilots and thirteen (13) Technicians who have successfully completed a Helicopter Conversion Training. The Graduation Ceremony will take place on the 30 June 2017 at the Belize Defence Force Air Wing Base, Williamson Hanger Complex, commencing at 0900 hrs. The Helicopter Conversion training started on the 11 July 2016 and concluded on 26 June 2017 and covered a wide range of helicopter related subjects and practical exercises.

Northern Regional Hospital has two new operating theaters
The Northern Regional Hospital now has a fully functioning operating theater following investments made by the Government of Belize through the ministry of health. The opening ceremonies took place on Tuesday in Orange Walk and present for the event were Minister of Health, Hon. Pablo Marin, his minister of State, Hon. Angel Campos and Area Representative for Orange Walk North, Hon. Gaspar Vega.

The gallant and the few honored in Belmopan last week
Over 280 police officers of varying ranks were recognized in an award ceremony at the National Police Training Academy in Belmopan on Thursday of last week. It was an opportunity for members of the public and the media to witness the rewarding of police officers for their long service, good conduct, merit and distinguished service during the observance of Police Week. In his address, Assistant Commissioner of Police Robert Mariano congratulated the distinguished police officers for their “…long years of commitment, dedication and loyalty to the Belize Police Department and to the citizens and visitors of Belize.”

Freak storm descends on San Ignacio
A freak storm descended upon San Ignacio Town and Bullet Tree Falls for about two hours at about midday on Saturday inundating several streets and clogging drains in the surrounding areas. For a temporary period portions of the access road to Bullet Tree Falls had become covered by water. As a result of the surprise storm, Minister of the National Emergency Management Organization NEMO the Hon. Edmund Castro was prompted to make a quick visit to the area to meet with the Representative for the Cayo North Division the Hon. Omar Figueroa and the Mayor of San Ignacio and Santa Elena Earl Trapp Junior. The Hon. Edmund Castro was also able to communicate with the Cayo Central Representative the Hon. Rene Montero, who is also the Minister of Works. Al Westby was on the ground coordinating Government’s emergency response to those affected by the harbinger weather conditions.

Sugar Crop Season Closes
The 2016 – 2017 Sugar cane crop season comes to an end this week. The Belize Sugar Industries has indicated that it will receive its last delivery of sugarcane for this crop season on Friday June 30. After 28 weeks of grinding BSI’s grinders are expected to go into their annual slumber by Sunday or early next week. The weekly report issued on the June 21 by The Belize Sugar Industries indicate that at week 27 (last week) the amount of cane milled so far stands at 1,237,818 tons which are 50,886 less than last year’s crop which stood at 1,288,704 tons of sugar cane. The amount of sugar produced last year was 132,113 tons while this year it stands at 139,962 tons an increase of 7,849 tons. The factory’s grinding rate for this crop season has been 6,315 tons while last year it ended with 6,575 tons a decrease of 260 which according to the industry is as a result of bad weather.

24 Belizean students accepted for 2017 Taiwan scholarships
The Embassy of the Republic of China (Taiwan) is pleased to announce that 24 Belizean students have been awarded scholarships respectively by the TaiwanICDF (Taiwan International Cooperation and Development Fund) Scholarship Program and the Taiwan Scholarship Program 2017. Both scholarship programs provides every scholarship recipient a round trip economy class ticket, accommodations, tuition fees, credit fees, insurance, textbook costs, and a monthly allowance from US$400 to US$950 depending on what subject is pursued. The scholarships will last for a maximum of 5 years for each and every recipient.

Toxic People
Toxic people defy logic. Some are blissfully unaware of the negative impact that they have on those around them, and others seem to derive satisfaction from creating chaos and pushing other people’s buttons. As important as it is to learn how to deal with different kinds of people, truly toxic people will never be worth your time and energy—and they take a lot of each. Toxic people create unnecessary complexity, strife, and, worst of all, stress.

Minister of Transport discusses cooperation with Singapore delegation
Minister of Transport Hon. Edmond Castro headed a team from his Ministry which met this On June 22 in Belmopan with a Singapore delegation led by Mr. Yap Ong Heng, Senior Advisor of the Singapore Ministry of Transport and Special Envoy of that country’s Minister of Infrastructure. The delegation is in Belize to strengthen transport cooperation with Belize and explore cooperation initiatives that could be executed under the recently signed air services agreement, also known as “open skies agreement”. The Signapore delegation also included the First Secretary (Maritime) of the High Commission of Singapore in London, Mr. Yao Yikai; and Assistant Director of the Ministry of Transport of Singapore, Mr. Justin Kua.

New clock at entrance of Belmopan
In the first quarter of 2016 work commenced on the construction of three roundabouts in the City of Belmopan; one is located at the Guanacaste National Park, the other at the intersection of the Hummingbird highway and Forest Drive and the third is near to the Belmopan Hospital. All of these roundabouts came under the Road Safety Project and two of those have been complete. The roundabout at the Guanacaste National Park prominently features a flag at the center with the names of all the districts in the circumference. It also has water jets in the center which at night is illuminated with multi-colored lights. It is quite a sight to behold and a true indication of the progress that the capital city has undergone in the past few years.

Bail for Gian Espadas for drug trafficking
A 22-year-old student of the University of Belize was busted with 12 pounds of cannabis and was arraigned in court on Tuesday, June 27, 2017. He was read a single charge of drug trafficking before Senior Magistrate Sharon Fraser after a night of lock down. He is Gian Carlo Espadas who was intercepted by MIT personnel.

Freddy Blanco receives major deduction on manslaughter case
On June 23, 2017, a young man from August Pine Ridge who pleaded guilty to the lesser charge of manslaughter before Justice Herbert Lord was initially sentenced to 17 years in prison. At mitigation, he received a deduction and was finally sentenced to 9 years and 3 months for the murder. That man is Freddy Amir Blanco who committed the crime on September 20, 2011, while he was still a minor. Blanco murdered his married lover when they got into an argument over smoking marijuana.

Burglars make off with gun
Nidia Dominquez, a 58-year-old Belizean businesswoman of Rhamdas Street, Belama Phase 3, Belize City, reported that sometime between the hours of 6:25 a.m. and 2:15 p.m. on Monday June 26, 2017 her home was broken into. As a result of the burglary stolen were: assorted jewelleries, electronic devices, travel suitcases, a 9mm Glock along with 2 (17) shooter magazines, a box of Ruger brand 9mm live rounds of ammunition, assorted flashlights, and earmuffs. The items were estimated all to a total value of $12,355.00. Police investigations continue.

Byron James brought to court for harm to Anita Nembhard
After four months of delay, police have levied a single charge of harm against Byron James, a 31-year-old prisoner who has been previously convicted for the murder of Frank Vasquez earlier in 2017. James was brought before Chief Magistrate Ann Marie Smith on Friday, June 23, 2017. In court, where he was unrepresented, James pleaded not guilty to the charge of harm.

Police seek second suspect in murder of 90 year old
Police have issued a wanted poster for 26-year-old Amin Ricardo Cho. He is wanted in connection with the chopping death of 90 year old Pedro Pol who was attacked on June 15th at his shop in the village of August Pine Ridge. On that day Pol was at his shop sometime around 2p.m. when two men of Hispanic descent entered the shop, tied him up and robbed him. The men who were armed with machetes also chopped Pol multiple times to the head and face as well as his entire body causing him to die.

Drug trafficking in Corozal
On June 26, 2017, police were conducting mobile patrols in Corozal Town and followed a green Toyota Corolla taxi where they saw two male persons exit at a restaurant. The taxi then left the area and parked at 8th Avenue where police conducted a search of the taxi. In the taxi at the time of the search were Marlon Beltran, Belizean Taxi Driver of San Antonio Village, Corozal District and 29-year-old Gino Ayuso, Belizean sales clerk of Paraiso Village.

Jermaine Franklin’s murder caught on tape
On June 27, 2017, police responded to shots being fired on Kings Street, in front of Teddy’s Music and DVD Rental in Belize City. There they saw the body of 36-year-old Jermaine Franklin of Fabers Road, Extension lying on the pavement with gunshot wounds to the back. Investigations reveal that at 6:25 p.m., Franklin was inside the store when a male person walked inside and fired several shots at him. Police response led to the detention of the person who is believed to have been the perpetrator. Franklin’s body was transported to the K.H.M.H.

Jahleel Goodger on remand for stealing vehicle from Sit and Sip
Jahleel Goodger, a 21-year-old Belize City car washer, is on remand after being denied bail after he was caught red handed stealing a woman’s $17,000 2008 Saturn Vue motor vehicle from in front of Sit and Sip Bar in Belize City. The vehicle which remains unfound was the property of Linda Tun and was stolen on Sunday, June 24 2017. Tun reported her vehicle stolen after she lost the key. Tun claims to have taken out the car battery and went to Sit and Sip bar when she saw her vehicle being stolen by a man who took a battery and placed it into her vehicle then drove off with it.

Akeem Guzman targeted in San Ignacio
Akeem Guzman, a 21 year-old resident of San Ignacio Town, was shot and killed at a friend’s house during the weekend. He was socializing with a 16 year-old companion in his yard, and the killer used the opportunity to ambush him from the shadows. Guzman’s brother and his mother recounted to the press that the last time they spoke to him was less than 2 hours before he was shot and killed. They say that he was over at their home, and his mother reportedly told him that it was getting late, and that he should be heading to his house.

Shandoy Jeffords found not guilty for attempted murder of prison mate
Shandoy Jeffords, a 32-year-old ex-inmate at the Belize Central Prison, has managed to beat an attempted murder charge after he tried to slit the throat of his prison mate, 30-year-old Pedro Pech in June 2013. Allegations are that on June 18, 2013, Jeffords cut Pech’s throat with a razor in the recreational hall of Tango 11 at the Belize Central Prison. The incident erupted after Pech was given cash to hand over to Jeffords by Jeffords’ brother. Pech never handed the money over to Jeffords. The men had it out because of their differences and it was then that Pech was injured. A doctor had classified his injury as wounding.

Man from Unitedville succumbs to injuries from accident
A man from Unitedville in Cayo was fatally injured in a traffic accident on Friday. Forty one year old Kenrick Anthony Myvette received multiple head and body injuries after being flung from a motorcycle near Running W on the George Price Highway. This was as a result of hitting a vehicle coming in the opposite direction, driven at the time by Elvin Penner, a Public Relations Representative at Koop Sheet Metal.

Arson in Punta Gorda
Clarentina Coc, a 23-year-old woman of Graham Creek Village, Toledo, reported on June 21, 2027 that on June 17, 2017 while she was at home she heard a noise outside and upon checking she saw a man she recognize as a villager from Graham Creek Village Toledo setting her thatched roof on fire. Her house was 30 feet in length and 15 feet in width with board siding. The house was completely destroyed by fire along with household items valued at $11,000.00. Police are investigating.

Purse snatcher caught in the act
A thief was caught red handed by an ex-police officer who saw him snatching a woman’s purse.The purse snatcher has been identified as 22-year-old Renick Dominguez, an unemployed resident of Biscayne Village.Dominguez appeared before Senior Magistrate Sharon Fraser where he was unrepresented and pleaded not guilty to the charge of theft. Allegations are that on Monday, June 26, 2017, he stole from Alisha Chan, an LG cell phone valued at $600. Chan was waking on Freetown when Dominguez grabbed her cellphone. An ex-police officer saw the entire incident and caught up with Dominguez who held him down until police officers came and Dominguez was handed over.

54 thousand dollar robbery in Corozal
A 34-year-old Indian national and store manager of Corozal Town, Avinash Deshmukh, reported that on Friday, 23rd June, 2017, he flew from Ranchito Village to San Pedro Town leaving his silver 4-Runner parked in the parking lot. The flight arrived in San Pedro where he collected whole sale and retail proceeds from his store amounting to a total of about $54,000.00.

Salvadoran woman fails to get asylum in Belize
A Salvadoran mother whose son got caught up in trouble with the law for having weed in his possession was brought before the court on June 28, 2017 to answer to a single charge of failure to comply with the conditions of her visitors permit. That woman is Maria Concepcion who has been living on Holy Emmanuel Street. Concepcion came to seek asylum but allegations are that on December 5, 2016, she was issued with a notification letter stating that she did not qualify for asylum and from that date, she had failed to get any other extension into Belize. As a result, she was charged with the immigration offense.

Salvadoran Family sent home for drugs and no papers
A family of 4 Salvadoran immigrants were all dragged to court after 1.6 grams of cannabis and a utensil used for smoking drugs was found at their Holy Emmanuel Street home in Belize City. The family members will be extradited to their country of origin after their unfortunate run in with the law. The family was arraigned on June 27, 2017 before Senior Magistrate Sharon Fraser after being in police custody since June 24, 2017. The persons are 18-year-old Santos Emilio Orellana Valdez, his mother 39-year-old Maria Concepcion Valdez, and her two brothers, 18-year-old Moises Elias Gomez Valdez and 19-year-old Ceasar Gamaliel Gomez Valdez. They were read two criminal offenses before the magistrate.

Burglary in San Pedro
On June 22, 2017, 51-year-old Fernando Giacoman, owner of Coco Cabana Restaurant and Bar in San Pedro Town, reported that several Atlantic Bank cheques amounting to a total value of $7,629.80 went missing from his office. Police are looking for two persons as the investigation continues.

One Love captures Allison “Harrier” Laing Basketball Tournament
Sugar City Hoops sponsored the Allison “Harrier” Laing one day Basketball Tournament on Sunday 25th June, out at the Trial Farm Basketball Court in Orange Walk. Seven teams participated in the one day event. One Love received $300 cash plus the championship trophy while Truckers received $200 plus the second place trophy. The Allison “Harrier” Laing One Day Tournament 2017 was a success. Thanks to all the teams that participated and thanks to BABO for officiating. Congratulations to the champions One Love. 2nd place went to Truckers from Belize City.

Edgar Nissan Arana is the 2017 National Road Champion
The Cycling Federation of Belize held its National Road Championship on Sunday 25th June, 2017, in three categories namely Elite, U-23, Masters; Female and the Junior and Youths. In the Elite, U-23 and Masters Category, some 28 cyclists signed up to participate in the event but on race day only 21 cyclists stared the course with only 13 cyclists completed the 105 miles event, which started out in Dangriga Town and concluded at Leslie’s Imports at 1.5 miles on the George Price Highway. At the conclusion of the event, Edgar Nissan Arana of Westrac Alliance Cycling Team rode into the history books, when he was the first rider to cross the finish line in a time of 4:26:05 to capture the 2017 National Road Championship. Arana was followed by Brandon Cattouse of Smart/CRay Western Spirit Cycling Team in a time of 4:33:10 to claim second place. The third rider to cross the finish line was Ron Vasquez also of Smart/CRay Western Spirit Cycling Team.

Belize District Basketball Association Firms’ Competition opens
The Belize District Basketball Association 2017 Firms’ Competition opened on Friday 23rd June, at the St. Martin de Porres Swift Hall in Belize City. There are nine (9) teams participating in this year’s competition- Belize Bank Bulldogs, Belize Telemedia Ltd., Central Health Department/Fire Service, Dragons, The Kings, Grace Kings, INFOTEL/Mars Distributors, Mayan Man Warriors and Tuff e Nuff. The competition will continue this coming weekend with four more games on the schedule. On Friday 30th June at 7:00 pm in game one, INFOTEL/Mars Distributors will go up against The Kings and in the night cap Grace Kings will see actions against Tuff e Nuff. On Saturday 1st July at 7:00 pm. Belize Bank Bulldogs will go up against Central Health Department/Fire Service and in the final game of the evening; it will be BTL against Dragons.

Silk Grass Royale Girlz clip Seine Bight Flame in Stann Creek Softball competition
The Stann Creek Softball Competition continued on Sunday 25th June, 2017, at the Michael Ashcroft Stadium in Independence Village with two games. In the first game played, Silk Grass Royale Girlz edged out Seine Bight Flames in extra inning by the score of 12-11 to win the game. Seine Bight Flames led for most part of the game, when in the bottom of the fifth inning an assortment of fielding errors opened the flood gate that allowed the Silk Grass Royale Girlz to tie the score at 5-5. At the end of 7 innings the score was 11-11 and the Tiebreaker Rule had to come into effect in the top of the 8th inning.

Breaking Belize NewsPJ

Belize Represented at XLIX Summit in Costa Rica
According to a Government of Belize press release, Belize attended the XLIX Summit of Heads of Government and State of the Central American Integration System (SICA) in Costa Rica from June 28th-30th, 2017. The release says that Central American leaders met to discuss regional cooperation, security, and the continued strengthening of regional integration.

Festival of Hope to be celebrated in Belize City
On Saturday, July 22, 2017 thousands of people from across the nation of Belize will gather together in Belize City for a historic day of music concerts, X-tream sports, fun, games, and a message about the hope that can only be found in Jesus Christ.

NICH hosts Belize Archaeology Symposium in San Ignacio
The 15th installment of the Belize Archaeology Symposium (BAS) is being held from June 28  30, 2017 in San Ignacio, Cayo, Belize. The primary objective of the symposium is to disseminate current archaeological information to the people of Belize, the tourism industry, and the general archaeological community.

European Union funds capacity building in TVET sector
The Ministry of Economic Development & Petroleum and the Ministry of Education, Culture, Youth & Sports have signed a contract with GFA Consulting Group of Germany for BZ$2.6 million for a TVET Capacity Building and Professional Development Training Programme.

How to build a bridge- UDP engineering vs PUP Racketeering
By Delroy Cuthkelvin: The PUP and UDP are as different as night and day, and one thing that bears this out most graphically is infrastructure. Look, for example, at the spanking new, sturdy Cayo Bridge across the Macal River built by this UDP Government (top photo) which […]

Belize gets another black eye for trafficking in persons
The 2017 US State Department report on Trafficking in Persons is out. The report indicates that again Belize is ranked in the lowest tier three because, “The Government of Belize does not fully meet the minimum standards for the elimination of trafficking and is […]

Notice: Noise abatement regulations
In relation to the current debate on the “entertainment strip” in the area of Newtown Barracks in Belize City and the issue of NOISE POLLUTION being experienced for some time now by residents in the surrounding area, the Department of the Environment (DOE) supports […]

Michelle Nunez to represent Belize for Costa Maya Crown 2017
The National Director for Miss America Latina Belize, Michael Arnold announced Michelle Estrella Nuñez as Miss Belize Costa Maya 2017. Nunez is from San Pedro, Ambergris Caye and aims to become the first San Pedrana to capture the Costa Maya crown. The 26 year-old, […]

Coast guard officer graduates with top honors from US Naval War College
Lieutenant Gregory Soberanis of the Belize Coast Guard (BCG) graduated from the United States Naval War College on June, 16th 2017, after successfully completing the Naval Staff Course in Newport, Rhode Island, U.S.A. Soberanis, who is the first Belizean to attend the one-year version […]

Drunken police officer appears before tribunal
A video footage gone viral on social media this week captured PC Florencio Rash in an inebriated fashion at the Belmopan bus station. Yesterday police confirmed that he was under the influence of alcohol. Belmopan Police have headed disciplinary actions against him which have […]

Mayor Bradley hosts press briefing
Belize City Mayor, Darrell Bradley, called a press briefing this morning to address several issues affecting Belize City, including trade license reforms, the renovation of the.commercial center and the ongoing discussion about night clubs on Princess Margaret Drive. Bradley exaplained that the new trade […]

Caye Caulker Lobster Fest 2017 kicks off this weekend
Belizeans and tourists are heading over to Caye Caulker for the annual Lobster festival. First began on July 1994 by the Islanders Veterans Football Club, the Caye Caulker Lobsterfest is the original Lobster Fest of Belize, and the only festival on Caye Caulker Island. […]

No agreement yet for new San Ignacio/Santa Elena bridge
The new bridge connecting the twin towns of San Ignacio and Santa Elena is almost completed. Chairman of the United Democratic Party, Alberto August had indicated on social media that the bridge will be named, “The Rene Montero Bridge”, but government has not issued […]

GDP up for first quarter
Preliminary estimates from the Statistical Institute of Belize (SIB) show that Belize Gross Domestic Product for the first quarter of 2017 was up by 2.1 percent, when compared to first quarter in 2016. The total value of goods and services produced in Belize was […]

Imports down a little, exports up a lot in May
Belize’s expenditures on imports fell by 4.2 percent for the month of May, while revenues from exports were up by 28.9 percent, according to the Statistical Institute of Belize’s (SIB) latest External Trade Bulletin. For the month of May 2017, imports were valued at […]

Cost of living up in May
Continuing the trend since the beginning of 2017, the cost of living in Belize was higher in the month of May than it was in 2016. According to the Statistical Institute of Belize (SIB), the prices of goods and services regularly purchased by Belizean […]

Man chopped to death in Corozal
According to police reports, Omar Morales Gonzalez, 21, a Salvadoran living in Belize was murdered in San Joaquin, Corozal. Gonzalez was chopped to the neck. The perpetrator also chopped Doniver Armoldo Ruano, 20, also of San Joaquin Village. Ruano received chop wounds to right […]

Blogs

Getting to Ambergris Caye and Caye Caulker: Taking the Water Taxi after You Arrive at International Airport
There are two water taxi companies that are located within minutes of each other but one has more departures than the other. That makes it much more convenient. Check the website for San Pedro Belize Express for times and prices. You do not have to buy tickets before hand – you can buy them right at the water taxi terminal. LONG NOTE: You may notice that people around you are getting different prices. The water taxis in Belize often have “local” and “visitor”/”tourist” pricing. Many bristle at the thought of it! But before you balk and think you got ripped off by “gringo pricing”, let me tell you why I think this is TOTALLY fair almost all of the time. The water taxis are how locals get from the cayes to the mainland for business, for school, for shopping and to visit family. Though privately owned, it is basically public transportation. (There is no public transportation in Belize in the true sense of the word – all boats, buses and flights are privately owned.)

International Sourcesizz

Gas prices worldwide
Gas prices by country using official data sources.

New Research Finds Air Pollution is Far Deadlier than Previously Thought
The U.S. standards for our two deadliest air pollutants--ground-level ozone and fine particulate matter less than 2.5 microns in diameter (PM2.5 )--are not stringent enough to prevent thousands of premature air pollution deaths each year among the elderly, found a study by Harvard University scientists, led by Qian Di, released Wednesday in the New England Journal of Medicine. The research was exceptionally vast and lengthy, covering all 61 million Americans on Medicare, age 65 and older, for the thirteen years from 2000 to 2012. The EPA’s National Ambient Air Quality Standards (NAAQS) sets the acceptable annual average concentration of PM2.5 pollution at 12 micrograms per cubic meter of air. However, the study discovered that PM2.5 concentrations as low as 5 micrograms per cubic meter caused significantly increased death rates, and found no “safe” level of PM2.5 below which the risk of death tapered off.

Videos

  • Sacred Heart Junior College Student Video, min. Christopher Witz, with the help of some of his friends, has created a wonderful promo video for SHJC. High level of production, and it shows. It also has a great message about family and foundation, which is SHJC's tagline. Now's the time to register for next semester, and find out about scholarships, of which there are many.

  • Belize 2017, 2min. stopped in Belize for some vacation time after volunteering in Guatemala!

  • Rare Low Level Flight over Belize's Barrier Reef - Awesome HD Footage, 4min. See Belize's Barrier Reef up close courtesy of a Low Level flight from Belize City to San Pedro Town on Maya Island Air. See why Belize is one of the best diving destinations in the world.

  • KTV the Remix (June 27, 2017), 3hr.

  • A VILLAGER IS CHOPPED TO DEATH IN SAN JOAQUIN, 6min. There was a murder that occurred in the wee hours of this morning in the normally quiet community of San Joaquin Village in the Corozal District. A fight among three men had a deadly result when an armed man fatally chopped one, and seriously injured the other. SHOW MORE

  • Talk Ah Di Town June 29, 2017, 25min.

  • Regional Testing Day, 34min.

  • DigiCell shared the details of their latest promotions, 19min.

  • Benefits of the Moringa plant, 33min.

  • National Corn Coconut and BBQ Festival, 1min. COUNTDOWN BEGINS....UNDER THE TENTS, ON THE BEACH, IN THE SAND....IN THE SEA, THIS FESTIVAL IS ON.

  • Great Blue Hole, Belize, min. Scuba diving in the Great Blue Hole, Lighthouse Reef Atoll, Belize. Imaging by Aldo Perez.

  • Corozal Community College Marching Band welcomes APEX Music, 1.5min.

    June 29, 2017


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    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, and other specials


    The San Pedro Sun

    SPTC 5-a-side Football Tournament heads into playoffs
    After seven weeks of action, the San Pedro Town Council’s 5-a-side Football Tournament is nearing its playoffs. The seventh set of games took place on Wednesday, June 21st to Saturday, June 24th, and as usual, large crowds came out to the Honorable Louis Sylvestre Sporting Complex to support their favorite players and teams. On Wednesday, June 21st, two U-15 and three male division games took place. In the Under-15 category, San Pedrito Strikers triumphed over Los Catrachitos, 2-1, while Caribeña Strikers won 1-0 over San Pedro Pirates. The male results were: Jokers FC 3 vs Terror Squad 1, Rookies 5 vs Peacemaker 3, and Tropic FC 6 vs Boca Bombers 3. Due to Dia de San Pedro festivities, games have been postponed to Wednesday, July 5th at the Honorable Louis Sylvestre Sporting Complex, starting at 7PM.

    Graduations galore on La Isla Bonita!
    Over the past week, graduation ceremonies across the island highlighted three Standard Six classes and two preschools. As Standard Six Students celebrated their academic achievement in completing eight years of primary school, preschoolers celebrated their entrance to primary school. San Pedro Roman Catholic School, Holy Cross Anglican School, New Horizon Seventh Day Adventist School, Little Angels Preschool, and ABC Preschool.

    Bowen and Bowen Ltd introduces Belikin Light!
    There is a brand new beer in the Belikin Family. ‘Belikin Light,’ was introduced on Tuesday, June 27th at the Belikin Brewing Company installations in Ladyville, north of Belize City. The newest member in the line of Belikin Beer products is low -alcohol and calorie. Along with a light, balanced flavour, it is expected to become the perfect choice for the consumer with an active lifestyle. The first batch of Belikin Light is expected to reach Ambergris Caye by Saturday, July 1st.

    NEMO holds first Official EOC Meeting for the Hurricane Season
    In an effort to increase preparedness during the 2017 Atlantic Hurricane Season, the National Emergency Management Organization (NEMO) hosted a meeting with all 13 committees under the San Pedro’s Emergency Operation Center (EOC). The group convened on Friday, June 23rd at the Belize Rural South NEMO Branch office on Coconut Drive for the first meeting of the Hurricane Season. It was aimed at reviewing the state of readiness and fine-tune the EOC’s plan of action that would be activated in the event of a storm or extreme rain.

    Ambergris Today

    The Newest Member Of The Belikin Family... Belikin Light
    After almost fifty years of success with Belikin, the Belize Brewing Company continues to grow with the introduction of Belikin Light. The new member of the Belikin family was introduced at a press conference on Tuesday, June 27 at the Tap Room at the Belize Brewing Company, Ladyville. Belikin Light is the new light beer option in the Belize Brewing Company portfolio. With its low calorie count, Belikin Light’s great drinkability makes it the perfect choice for the consumer with an active lifestyle. Belikin Light will be sold at the same great price as Belikin Beer and Stout. The bottle will also have a refund value of $0.25 cents like other Belikin beers.

    San Pedro Beauty Named Miss Costa Maya Belize 2017
    Mr. Michael Arnold, National Director for Miss America Latina Belize, proudly announces Michelle Estrella Nuñez as Miss Belize Costa Maya 2017. Michelle is from San Pedro, Ambergris Caye and she aims to become the first Sampedrana to capture the Costa Maya crown. The 26 year-old, 5’6” (1.68m) beauty was a past Miss San Pedro (2014). She also represented Belize last year at Miss America Latina del Mundo in Mexico, where she not only captured the award for Best Original Costume but also gave Belize our highest and thus far only placement in this pageant. She placed 4th Runner-up (out of 19), besting delegates from Argentina, Australia, Canada, Mexico, Spain, among others.

    Misc Belizean Sources

    mzz

    Vildo Westby Wanted regarding Feliz Ayuso murder
    Nearly five months after the brutal murder of island activist Felix Ayuso on February 1, 2017, San Pedro Police have released a wanted poster for Vildo Westby, believed to be connected to Ayuso's death.

    Ongoing Consultations for the Development of a National Trade Policy: Meeting with the Private Sector in Belmopan
    The Directorate General for Foreign Trade (DGFT) launched Belize’s Trade Policy Framework which was approved by Cabinet in July 2016. The Framework provides government’s commitment and policy guidance for formulating Belize’s first comprehensive National Trade Policy. Under the leadership of a Trade Adviser provided by the Commonwealth Secretariat, work is now ongoing to develop Belize’s first comprehensive trade policy. It is in this context that the DGFT has launched national consultations country-wide, with a view to gathering reactions and recommendations from all relevant stakeholders in the public sector, private sector and other non-state actors including those in the productive sector. Several consultative meetings were convened with stakeholders since the process was launched on 14th March, 2017.

    Ride Across Belize
    Corozal show us your support for those riding for worthy causes.

    DANZA DE LA CABEZA DE COCHINO “ OK´ OSTA POL KE´ K´EN ”
    Entre los mayas es común que sus celebraciones festivas y tradicionales tengan una esencia pagano-religiosa, ya que aunque la celebración de “la danza de la cabeza de cochino”, es una lúcida danza de aspecto más bien satírica y divertida, esta se realiza frente a la iglesia del pueblo durante las fiestas patronales.

    Belize Archaeology Symposium
    Opening night of the Belize Archaeology Symposium was quite a success. The Museum of Belize was there to share in the excitement.

    May 2017 Trade, GDP & CPI, Labour Force Survey
    CONSUMER PRICES UP 0.7% IN MAY 2017. Latest statistics released by the Statistical Institute of Belize show that the All-Items Consumer Price Index for the month of May 2017 stood at 104.4, an increase from 103.7 in May of 2016. The prices of goods and services regularly purchased by Belizean Households were, on average, 0.7 percent higher in May 2017 than they were in the same month of 2016.
    IMPORTS DOWN 4.8 %, DOMESTIC EXPORTS UP 28.9% IN MAY 2017. IMPORTS: For the month of May 2017, Belize imported goods valuing $161.3 million. This represented a 4.2 percent or $7.1 million drop from the same month in 2016, when imports totalled $168.4 million. Decreases across various categories led to the overall reduction in Belize’s import bill. EXPORTS: The total value of Belize’s domestic exports for the month of May 2017 was $72.6 million, up 28.9 percent or $16.3 million from the $56.3 million recorded for May 2016. Sugar was the most dominant among the major exports during the month of May 2017, as revenues from that commodity contributed more than a half of total export earnings.
    GDP: ECONOMY GROWS 2.1% IN FIRST QUARTER 2017: PRIMARY AND TERTIARY ACTIVITIES UP, SECONDARY ACTIVITIES DOWN. Preliminary first quarter estimates by the Statistical Institute of Belize show that, for the first three months of 2017, the country’s level of economic activity increased by 2.1 percent when compared to the same period in 2016. The total value of goods and services produced in Belize was $748.2 million, up $15.4 million from $732.8 in the first quarter of 2016.
    UNEMPLOYMENT RISES MARGINALLY TO 9% IN APRIL 2017 DESPITE 3,000 NEW JOBS. Results from the Statistical Institute of Belize’s most recent Labour Force Survey showed that the national unemployment rate in April 2017 stood at 9 percent, a marginal increase from 8 percent in April 2016, when the country recorded its lowest unemployment rate in almost a decade. This rise in the rate of unemployment recorded was notwithstanding the net addition of more than 3,000 new jobs, as persons joined the labour force at a faster rate than that at which new jobs were created.

    SBDC Workshop: Quick Books 101, Part 3 of the Accounting Series
    Presented by: Mr. Jorge Gentle, Business Adviser, SBDCBelize, Beltraide. Location: Beltraide Conference Room, 14 Orchid Garden Street, Belmopan. Workshop Date: July 6th, 2017. Time: 8am to 3pm. ONLY 15 SEATS. Cost: $60.00, Includes lunch and refreshments. This course is designed for individuals who have background knowledge in accounting or have taken Part 1 and 2 of the Accounting Series. This course was created for anyone who wants to learn QuickBooks. Whether you signed up simply to learn QuickBooks or are a complete newbie to the software does not matter. We will teach you the software from beginning to end so that anyone, regardless of experience, learns all that they need to know to successfully use the program.

    2nd Annual Health Fair for San Pedro
    Saturday, July 1, 10am -3pm, Lion's Den

    Caye Caulker Lobster Fest
    Start of the Caye Caulker Lobster Fest weekend, come out and see the ladies as they compete to be the next Miss Caye Caulker Lobster Fest on Friday night.

    NOISE ABATEMENT REGULATIONS
    In relation to the current debate on the “entertainment strip” in the area of Newtown Barracks in Belize City and the issue of NOISE POLLUTION being experienced for some time now by residents in the surrounding area, the Department of the Environment (DOE) supports the Mayor of Belize City and the Belize City Council in enforcing legislation that exists to ensure that there is a balance between the economic development of Belize and a healthy environment for all. As a Government Department that stands by its motto “Balancing Development and the Environment”, the DOE believes in the economic/commercial development of the community, but not at the expense of the very same citizens we are here to develop and protect. This specific area in question has been a challenging location for the DOE on the issue of noise pollution. Noise abatement legislation have been on the books for quite a long time now, in the form of the Pollution Regulations of 1995 and the Intoxicating Liquor Licensing Act. The Pollution Regulations speak to “permissible levels” of noise and the pre-requirement of “soundproofing” of establishments producing noise. There are measures that can be put in place to reduce the level of noise so it does not affect the quality of life of surrounding neighbourhoods.

    Trafficking in Persons Report: BELIZE: TIER 3
    The Government of Belize does not fully meet the minimum standards for the elimination of trafficking and is not making significant efforts to do so; therefore, Belize remained on Tier 3. Despite the lack of significant efforts, the government took some steps to address trafficking, including the identification of two trafficking victims; and the investigations of 10 trafficking cases and two continued prosecutions initiated in a previous year. However, the government did not begin any new prosecutions or convict any traffickers. The government did not investigate or prosecute any public officials for alleged complicity in human trafficking-related offenses, despite reports of a significant level of official complicity. Despite the government’s raids on commercial sex establishments, few trafficking crimes were uncovered due to limited intelligence-gathering, inconsistent application of formal victim identification procedures, and suspected complicity among some law enforcement officials.

    Missing dog
    Panda is missing. He was seen in the Buena Vista area by a neighbor with three men and a big rope around his neck. If anyone sees him, please message me. There is a $500 REWARD for his return. Panda has white markings on his chest and his right eye has a cataract. He weighs about 175 lbs. we are in Cayo.

    FREE concert with APEX
    The Belmopan City Council is collaborating with the US Embassy for a FREE concert with APEX, a trio group and they will be performing at the OLOG Parish Hall on Friday, June 30th at 7:00 pm. All are invited to attend this FREE and open to the public event.

    No Protections for Threatened Belize Barrier Reef World Heritage Site
    The Belizean government has failed to implement promised protections for the Belize Barrier Reef World Heritage site, according to a WWF assessment published today, leaving the largest barrier reef in the western hemisphere under threat from offshore oil drilling and damaging coastal construction. Seismic testing for oil was attempted just one kilometre from the World Heritage site as recently as October 2016. Coming less than a week before the 41st session of the World Heritage Committee begins in Krakow, WWF, as part of the Belize Coalition to Save Our Natural Heritage, assessed progress on a number of protections identified by UNESCO as essential to the reef’s long-term survival. The Belizean government committed to UNESCO in 2015 that the necessary measures to ensure the reef’s protection would be implemented by December 2016. “Seven months on, Belize has not delivered on its promise to protect the Belize Barrier Reef. Instead this remarkable ecosystem – vital to both wildlife and the country’s economy – remains under threat. We urge Belize’s government to act immediately to safeguard the reef for future generations,” said Nadia Bood, Mesoamerican Reef Scientist at WWF in Belize.

    Protein Banks for Livestock
    Farmers along the buffer zone of the Vaca Forest Reserve promote agro-ecological systems by establishing protein banks as an alternative supplement for livestock. We are grateful to the Ministry of Agriculture for the planting material.

    BTB Virtual Tradeshow
    The BTB Virtual Trade Show expo will bring together over 25 local stakeholders ranging from our local hoteliers, tour operators, wedding planner, Transportation Company and associations who will be meeting “virtually” with international buyers (Travel Agents, Tour Operators/Wholesalers, Meetings, Incentives, Conferences, and Events (MICE) and Press) from North America, Europe, South and Central America. To date we have over 110 registered buyers from all these regions.

    Streets of Belize City: Nurse Seay Street
    Vivian Wilhelmina Myvett Seay (1881–1971) was born in British Honduras. She was a British Honduran nurse, social reformer and activist. Seay, Creole and of the middle class, attended the Anglican Church school and earned her teaching credentials in the pupil-teacher program. Here are some quick facts about Seay:

    Channel 7

    Immigration Officer Ady Pacheco Says They Never Vetted Any Documents
    Last week the Senate Select Committee called Immigration Officer Ady Pacheco to testify. Her name is called about 94 times in the Auditor General's reports and the Senators called her back today to discuss a lot of administrative irregularities exposed in the reports. One topic they did bring up again was her comment that she didn't closely inspect the files she accepted as a frontline immigration officer. She said that it was not her duty to spot fraudulent documents being submitted as part of applications for visas and nationalities. Well, the Senators wanted her to explain why she didn't see that as part of her responsibility, and she made some surprising claims. According to Pacheco, no one at the Immigration Department did any kind of verification of whether documents were authentic or not. The Senate didn't exactly accept that explanation, and here's how they challenged her on that:

    Boots "Bex" Because He Was Called To Testify But Sent Home
    There was supposed to be one more witness for the day. UDP Minister Anthony "Boots" Martinez was summoned by the Senate Select Committee to testify, and he was no doubt more than willing to come forward because he wanted to respond to the allegations that Alvarine Burgess made against him. A few weeks ago, Burgess went before the Senate and said that back in the days when she was an immigration agent, she went to "Boots" Martinez, where she paid him several thousand dollars in bribe money so that he would write recommendations for Chinese visa applicants, guaranteeing that the visas would be approved. He told us that she is telling a lie, and most likely would have repeated those comments for the Senate's record, but he didn't get the chance. The Committee inexplicably decided that they couldn't take his testimony today.

    PC Florencio Rash Hauled Before a Police Tribunal
    Last night we showed you footage of a cop, identified as PC Florencio Rash, laid out on the ground at the Belmopan bus station. The video quickly went viral on social media, provoking howls of outrage. Well since then the Police Department has confirmed that Rash was under the influence of alcohol at the time the video was taken, and disciplinary measures have been initiated against him by Belmopan police. This afternoon, we spoke to the man who's about to take charge of the Professional Standards Branch, Assistant Commissioner Chester Williams, about the incident and the disciplinary actions against PC Rash - who falls under ACP Williams because he is assigned to Eastern Division South..

    SIB: Unemployment Up
    The Statistical Institute of Belize has released the latest unemployment figures, and they show that a higher unemployment rate. The Labour Force survey of April 2017, showed that when compared to April of 2016, there were over two thousand more persons unemployed. Statistician Curwen Arthurs explained: Curwen Arthurs - Statistician I, SISB: "With last year's rate of 8% which one of the lowest in almost a decade, it was expected that rate would have raised, increased since then; experiencing such a low rate. So this time around we saw that the rate increased marginally by 9% and this was because the labour force was growing at a pace a bit faster than persons were actually gaining jobs. If we look at the rates by district, we see that only the Belize and Stann Creek district had rated higher than the national rate of 9% with Stann Creek having the highest rate at 13.1% and Belize having the second highest rate at 10.9%. "

    SIB: Economy Grew
    And there are probably more jobs because the economy grew in the first quarter of 2017. That's an improvement over last year, when it contracted. Statistician Jefte Ochaeta outlined the findings: Jefte Ochaeta - Statistician I, SIB: "In the months of January to March of 2017 we see an increase of 2.1% in the economy where Belize produced goods and services totalling 748.2 million dollars which an increase of 15.3 million dollars of basically 2.1% from the same period in 2016. I can tell you that this 2.1% was mainly contributed by an increase in agriculture sector where the agriculture sector is contributing 1.6% to the 2.1% increase."

    Economy Grew On Strength Of Sugar Output
    The economy usually shows good growth in the first quarter - and that is owing in no small part to cane harvesting and sugar production - which are at their peak during that time. Ochaeta says that with Citrus, Petroleum and Flour down in the secondary sector, Sugar production was up by almost a third: Jefte Ochaeta - Statistician I, SIB: "When we look at the specifics of the secondary industries we see here that there was an increase in the sugar production. Why is this? Well mainly due to the fact that there was better quality in the cane due to favourable weather conditions, the dry condition in weather help the purity and the quality of the sugar cane and also the quality assurance and improved factors that the factory has placed to work. So those really helped the sugar production, plus the addition of the sugar refined by our factory in the west."

    Bad News For Bowen: Beer and Soda Production Down
    Notably, production of beer and soft drinks was down for the second successive quarter. That's Bowen and Bowen's market, and Ochaeta said the beverage producer is being affected by imports: Jefte Ochaeta - Statistician I, SIB: "There was a decrease in beverage production of almost 5%. This is due that because we observed that we had less being produced, we had about 47,000 less gallons of beer being produced. Similarly we had 216,000 less litres of soft drinks being produced. What's affecting our production? Basically we saw an increase in the import of soft drinks and also beer, imported in 2016, it's affecting the producer. Additionally in the secondary industry, there was a decreased in flour production by 6% which also affected by flour imports."

    Overnight Arrivals Up, But Hotel Occupancy Isn't
    And the folks at Belikin aren't the only ones singing the blues due to a disruptive marketplace. Overnight tourism interests are also feeling the bite - but not from imports, most likely from AirBnB. The online service which lets you turn that spare room in your home into a lodging for guests accounts for a drop in occupancy rates - even though more overnight tourists are arriving. Jefte Ochaeta - Statistician I, SIB: "What happened is we had more persons coming into the country however, the hotel sector where the overnight visitor would be going reported a decrease in the hotel room occupancy rate by 5%. So that means that less revenue was generated from hotels from our traditionally hotels where our traditional visitors would be visiting, that means that the dynamics of our visitors has changed. Our visitors are now going into other kinds of budget services for accommodations, so that's why we saw a decrease in the hotels and restaurants services."

    Imports Down, Exports Up
    Turning now to external trade, imports were down while exports were up. And that, again, is due mostly to a strong out-turn for sugar. Here's more: Tiffany Vasquez - Statistician, SIB: "Total domestic exports for the period January to May 2017 amounted to 237.6 million dollars; this is an increase of 21.8% or 42.6 million when compared to January to May of 2016. This notable 21.8% growth in domestic earning was the result of positive performances for most of Belize's major exports. Sugar continues to be Belize's top export earner at 94.9 million dollars, up 58% or 34.8 million."

    Exports to The US Declined In First Quarter
    And while exports were up - notably, there was less being exported to the United States - which looks to Belize for Citrus concentrate. Here's why: Tiffany Vasquez - Statistician, SIB: "Domestic exports to the US fell by 10.8 million dollars over the period to 30 million largely due to the drop in orange concentrate sales. On the other hand exports to the EU rose by 12.2 million to 35 million, going to greater exports of sugar, orange concentrate, banana and orange oil to that region in the period January to May 2017. Further earnings from Belize's exports to CARICOM grew 4.3 million to 33 million due mostly to increased revenue from crude petroleum and boosted black eyed peas sales."

    Managing Business In A Natural Disaster
    Today BELTRAIDE and the Latin American and Caribbean Economic System, abbreviated in Spanish as "SELA," hosted officials from throughout Latin America and the Caribbean to talk about continuing business after natural disasters. The workshop was tailor-made for Micro, Small and Medium Enterprises to learn about natural disaster risk management. Participants were advised on how to prepare their businesses for natural disasters, and to ensure that their livelihoods are safeguarded should a major disaster occur. We spoke to Beltraide representative Shari Williams, as well one of the presenters, Yves Davila, about the event...

    Son of "Sabe" In Jail
    Sebastian Nunez is no stranger to the news - and many times that he's been on here, it's because he's accused of a crime. But that hasn't happened for a while - and when we ran a story the other night saying he was wanted he came here quickly to say police were after his son, not him. Well that son was sent to jail - where he turned 18. Nunez went to visit him but was told the teenager was in a confinement area. Then he went back two weeks later, and his son was still confined. Today, Sebastian "Sabe" Nunez told us that his young son may have a long rap sheet, but he's being subjected to too much:

    DOE Backs Up The Mayor and City Council On Noise Pollution
    Last week, the mayor made waves when he declared that City Hall would finally start adhering to the letter of the law, and stop granting 4:00 AM extensions to bars and nightclubs that weren't soundproofed. He was talking mainly about the "entertainment strip" on Princess Margaret drive extending from the BTL Park to the Hour Bar. It adjoins a residential area, and after a town meeting, the mayor decided that residents had endured too much. Well, even though his city council is very divided on the issue because of the loss of revenue, and of social life, the Department of the Environment today let it be known that it has the Mayor's back.

    A New Belizean SITCOM
    No Matta What: it was the first hit Belizean drama series in the early 2000's. Characters like Tomasa, Lisani and Jaime certainly captivated the Belizean audience and their stories reflected the joys and struggles of life in the city. Well, the producers of this drama series hope to get you hooked on their new show called "Livin mi Life". It's their first attempt at a Belizean sitcom. Today, the Owner and Manager of 13 Productions who also produced "Livin Mi Life" dropped by our studios to tell us about this new series. 2 of the actors also told us what to expect from the character they play.

    Chester's Last Southside Meet And Greet
    As we mentioned earlier in the news, ACP Chester Williams will be vacating his position as Officer Commander of the Eastern Division - South, and moving over to Belmopan to take charge of the Professional Standards Branch. Today, Williams participated in his last community meet and greet. We have covered dozens of these on the news, and today in the Jane Usher area; we spoke to Williams about his final week in the neighbourhoods of the Southside: ACP Chester Williams - OC, Southside Police: "Indeed it is my final meet and greet as the officer commanding eastern division south and the feedback from the people that we have encountered for today has been positive in the sense that they are saying they are happy for the policing in the area, the patrols are visible, every so often they see the patrols pass by. Some of them are saying that they wish it was not my last, that is expected (laugh) right and I could understand where they are coming from but the time has come for me to move on and I am preparing to make my way to Belmopan as of Monday of next week."

    Will The Gang Truce Hold In the Vidal Era?
    Williams also gave us an update about the state of the gang truce which he and community activist Dianne Finnegan orchestrated earlier this year. Williams's transfer has caused some distress for some members of the Southside gang community, who fear the tactics of his replacement, former GSU Commander, Mark Vidal. Williams told us that he has spoken with gang leaders about upholding the truce, and has urged them to continue to work alongside the police. Here's what he had to say about that meeting... ACP Chester Williams - OC, Southside Police: "Just yesterday myself and Ms. Finnegan met with the gaggle of guys and we discussed with them basically what is expected that my departure does not mean we go back to the old but rather that we remain on course to continue to do good, to continue to respect their lives and the lives of others. I explained to them the importance of their lives to their families and that every life does matter including theirs and regardless of what people may say to them or say about them, they must always keep their heads up high and focus on what lies ahead of them and that is to ensure that they remain alive for the betterment of themselves and their families."

    Williams' First Duty At Professional Standards
    ACP Williams still has a couple more days as the Southside Police Commander, and apparently still has a few more things to strike off of his to-do list. Williams told us about his plans for final two days in Belize City and his expectations for his transition over to Professional Standards... ACP Chester Williams - OC, Southside Police: "If you go to my office you will see my office is peel, I have packed and prepared to leave, I'm just awaiting Mr. Vidal taking over, he should be coming in on Friday to take over, I'll be handing over to him on Friday morning and after Friday I'll no longer be the officer commanding eastern division south. I should be taking over from Mr. Lino, professional standard's branch on Monday and then I'll assume command of that unit so tomorrow we're having an event at the Racoon Street Police Station, media is invited. We'll be having a farewell slash appreciation event, I want to show appreciation to some officers who have been there with me and as well as to the media."

    A Real Ride For Charity
    Since 2004, the management and staff of the Social Security Board have been holding the Ride Across Belize fund raising event. Participants from various organizations and businesses take part in a cross country ride to raise awareness and fund a worthy cause. This year's proceeds will go to two organizations, the first is the Adopt a Child with a Disability, which provides therapy to youths with various disabilities, and the Urban Schools Gardening Programs, which teaches school children about subsistence farming as well as provides them with healthy meals. We spoke with the event's organizer, Chandra Cansino, as well as a representative from the Adopt a Child with a Disability program, about the importance of initiative...

    Immigration Officer Ady Pacheco Says They Never Vetted Any Documents
    Last week the Senate Select Committee called Immigration Officer Ady Pacheco to testify. Her name is called about 94 times in the Auditor General's reports and the Senators called her back today to discuss a lot of administrative irregularities exposed in the reports. One topic they did bring up again was her comment that she didn't closely inspect the files she accepted as a frontline immigration officer. She said that it was not her duty to spot fraudulent documents being submitted as part of applications for visas and nationalities. Well, the Senators wanted her to explain why she didn't see that as part of her responsibility, and she made some surprising claims. According to Pacheco, no one at the Immigration Department did any kind of verification of whether documents were authentic or not. The Senate didn't exactly accept that explanation, and here's how they challenged her on that:

    Boots “Bex” Because He Was Called To Testify But Sent Home
    There was supposed to be one more witness for the day. UDP Minister Anthony "Boots" Martinez was summoned by the Senate Select Committee to testify, and he was no doubt more than willing to come forward because he wanted to respond to the allegations that Alvarine Burgess made against him. A few weeks ago, Burgess went before the Senate and said that back in the days when she was an immigration agent, she went to "Boots" Martinez, where she paid him several thousand dollars in bribe money so that he would write recommendations for Chinese visa applicants, guaranteeing that the visas would be approved. He told us that she is telling a lie, and most likely would have repeated those comments for the Senate's record, but he didn't get the chance. The Committee inexplicably decided that they couldn't take his testimony today. He granted us an interview complaining that the Committee wasted his time and offered him no explanation:

    Channel 5

    Left Waiting by Senate, “Boots” Derides “Circus” Inquiry
    The public hearings of the Senate Special Select Committee resumed today with Immigration Clerk Ady Pacheco reappearing before the senate panel.  We will have highlights of that testimony later on, [...]

    Minister States Burgess’ Accusations are “Hearsay”
    The Minister characterizes Burgess’ statements as “hearsay” without any basis or foundation. But when questioned about whether Burgess’ testimony is not helpful, he contended that the Committee ought to limit [...]

    A Few Recommendations for Visas, But Martinez Says There’s Nothing Wrong
    According to the Minister, he has regularly recommended both constituents and acquaintances for a variety of Government services during his time in office. In the case of visa requests, that [...]

    Ady Pacheco Defends Peter Dahlstrom Decision
    Immigration officer Ady Pacheco was the sole witness this morning. She was thoroughly grilled by the members of the Committee on various cases and scenarios resulting in improper granting of [...]

    How Did San Pedro Harmouches Get So Much Help?
    Pacheco was also questioned about the case of the Harmouch family of San Pedro Town, Ambergris Caye, who appeared to recruit a powerful ally in area representative Manuel Heredia Junior. [...]

    No News On Missing Passports
    The Auditor General’s Report details many instances of persons being granted passports illegally.  But the Audit Department’s search uncovered thousands of blank passports that were simply reported as missing or [...]

    Green Card for Boots?
    Minister of Transport Edmond Castro had his U.S. diplomatic and personal visas revoked a few weeks ago for unconfirmed reasons, though his alleged involvement in the Immigration scandal is considered [...]

    Intoxicated Corporal Punished, But What Help for Stressed Cops?
    Police Constable Florencio Rash has been internally charged by the Belmopan Police for the offence, Prejudice of Good Order and Discipline. He was taken before a Disciplinary Tribunal, where he [...]

    Police Name Suspect in Killing of Felix Ayuso Jr.
    San Pedro Police are looking for a man wanted in connection of a murder that occurred six months ago. Twenty-eight-year-old Vildo Westby is said to be armed and dangerous and [...]

    Departing Chester Says City Gang Truce Will Survive
    ACP Chester Williams is recognized for minimizing the bloodshed in the Old Capital, specifically as it relates to gang-related violence. Earlier this year, Williams and his team of mediators, including [...]

    Jane Usher Hosts Chester’s Final “Meet and Greet”
    In his final meet and greet session today, Assistant Commissioner of Police Chester Williams was in the Jane Usher Boulevard area not only to bid farewell, but to get a [...]

    Chester Thankful for the Memories
    As of Saturday, July first, Eastern Division South will have a new commander. Superintendent Marco Vidal takes over from Assistant Commissioner of Police Chester Williams. Vidal is the former head [...]

    S.I.B. Tracks More Economic Activity, But Also More Unemployment
    Prices for goods and services shot up considerably in May of this year when compared to the same period last year. Consumers were hard hit on the pocket due to [...]

    It’s Time to Ride Across Belize with S.S.B.
    Since 2004, the Social Security Board’s staff has been supporting non-profits and other local projects doing community work by work raising monies to help fund worthy causes. The annual ‘Ride [...]

    New Enforcement at “Party Strip” Not About Politics; D.O.E. Agrees
    We have been reporting that the Belize City Mayor Darrell Bradley is at the center of a controversy involving residents and business owners in the vicinity of Newtown Barracks.  Despite [...]

    Area Resident Valerie Woods Says Enforcement Has Delicate Balance
    Among those present at last Wednesday’s meeting was Valerie Woods.  Not only is she a P.U.P. senator from Caribbean Shores, Woods also resides within proximity of the Pickwick Club.  Her [...]

    CTV3

    Boots Categorizes The Senate Hearings As A Circus
    The hearings of the Senate Select Committee resumed today with a third, consecutive full day of interrogation of the former Assistant to the Officer in Charge in the Nationality Section, Ady Pacheco. While we have the highlights of her testimony, the day didn’t escape some controversy because apparently a second UDP Minister was supposed to have testified in her place. Minister of Human Development, Anthony “Boots” Martinez, showed up at the National Assembly building this morning reportedly at the invitation of the Committee. But apparently there was some miscommunication as Martinez was told upon presenting himself that it wasn’t his turn just yet.

    What Cabinet Discusses Is Secret Says Boots Martinez
    While the media had Minister Boots in front of the cameras he was also asked about the decision by Cabinet to monitor Ministers like him and political agents who were issuing recommendation letters for visa applicants. The question: why did the Cabinet feel it necessary to take this measure has yet to be answered by any members of Cabinet, even by Prime Minister Dean Barrow. Today Boots used the usual line that Cabinet matters are classified, to avoid providing answers.

    Was Boots' Visa Revoked?
    One final matter brought up in the Boots interview is the allegation that Edmond Castro is not the only UDP Minister who has had his U.S. visa revoked. There have actually been reports that Boots has had his travel visa cancelled, but today he claimed that not only does he maintain his diplomatic visa, but that the U.S. has invited him to apply for residency.

    2016/2017 Crop Ends On Friday
    After 30 weeks of milling, the 2016-2017 sugar cane crop season will officially come to a close on Friday June 30th, the announcement was made today by the Sugar Industry Control Board and the Sugar Cane Production Committee. This decision was taken after a meeting among all stakeholders of the Sugar Industry on June 23rd. Viewers may remember that back in November at the start of the season, there was major controversy between the Belize Cane Farmer’s Association and the mill on the proposed estimate for the quantity of Cane delivered to the Mill for the crop season.

    US State Department Classifies Belize As Worst Traffic Offender In Central America
    The US State Department has issued its 2017 Trafficking in Persons Report - and similar to the past two years, Belize remained as a tier 3 country, classified as the worst trafficking offender in Central America. According to the report - which was released on Monday- “The Government of Belize does not fully meet the minimum standards for the elimination of trafficking and is not making significant efforts to do so and therefore remains in Tier 3” and even states several times in the report that "Trafficking-related complicity by government officials is common, including those at high levels."

    Addy Pacheco Grilled By Senate
    As we mentioned earlier in the newscast, Immigration officer Ady Pacheco was back before the Senate Committee today, for a third interrogation session. In the seven months of Senate hearings, no other person has made as many appearances, and there is a reason she has. Her name shows up in the report dozens of times for accepting, processing and recommending visa, nationality and passport applications which the Auditor General says should never have been processed, and today she was heavily criticized for her work at the Immigration Department.

    LOVE FM

    Public Advised to Take Caution When Seeking Medical Attention
    In light of yesterday’s report we made surrounding Jose Luis Espat Uc and his declaration of being a medical doctor, the Director of Health Services, Dr Marvin Manzanero cautioned the public to be wary when seeking medical attention. DR MARVIN MANZANERO “I think it is misleading we would have to address it I think on […]

    Health Director Says Its Nothing Personal with Jose Espat Uc
    Since we aired the story yesterday on Jose Luis Espat Uc and the question as to whether he is a legitimate medical doctor, he has contacted Love News threatening to sue the station and saying that he is being attacked and targeted by various entities due to his activism on corruption in Belize, particularly in […]

    Cyber-Bullying Gets Regional Manual to Combat
    A regional manual to tackle cyber bullying is being developed by agencies across the Caribbean. A meeting with regional stakeholders was held today in Belize which encompassed effective ways how to deal with cyber bullying. Cyber bullying is when someone is tormented, threatened, harassed, humiliated, or otherwise targeted by another person using the digital technology. […]

    PlusTV

    Body of Marky Mendez found by hunters
    The body of 24 year old Marky Mendez was found on Monday night. Two hunters were in an area near the Warie Head Bridge on the George Price Highway; that’s after Teakettle Village, past the S Curve when heading from Belmopan to San Ignacio. The hunters were looking for live game but instead came a...

    Penner arraigned for death of man in traffic accident
    Elvin Penner was arraigned this afternoon at the San Ignacio Magistrate’s court. Three charges were brought against him for the June 23rd death of Kenrick Myvette . Those charges are manslaughter by negligence, causing death by careless conduct, and driving a motor vehicle without due care and att...

    Manhunt for Amir Cho; wanted for murder of 90year old
    Police are looking for 26 year old Amir Ricardo Cho for a murder that happened in August Pine Ridge, Orange Walk district. Cho is believed to be one of two men who entered the store of 90 year old Pedro Pol on June 15th , almost two weeks ago. They robbed the store but not before tying up Pol and be...

    Apparent drunken uniformed police officer caught on video
    A video of a police officer, apparently taken at a taco stand somewhere in the country, was posted to face book. The video shows what appears to be a heavily intoxicated and uniformed officer, lying on the cement street with his hat and handcuff beside him on the ground. When police were asked to co...

    Three Belize City men charged for drug trafficking
    Three persons have been arrested for drug trafficking in Belize City. According to police reports, GSU conducted operations on Monday morning within the Raccoon Street Extension. That is where they found 34 year old Anthony Crawford, a stevedore of Belize City, 20 year old Frederick Arthur Smith, B...

    Tow Tow robbed in Belize City
    There was an armed robbery on Sunday afternoon in Belize City. It happened sometime around 12:30 p.m. at Tow Tow Store on Mahogany Street. According to police reports, 27 year old Belizean businesswoman Wanlan Fan, was in her store at the time when a male person with a rag over his face entered. Th...

    Four detained for drug trafficking in Corozal
    Corozal police have detained four persons to be charged for drug trafficking. On Monday evening, just before 4:30., police were conducting mobile patrol in Corozal Town and followed a green Toyota Corola taxi . According to police reports, they saw two male persons exit the taxi at a restaurant. Th...

    Ministry of Education Cyberbullying Forum
    Today the Ministry of Education opened a two-day forum to revise a Cyberbullying manual before it can be adopted in Belize. Facilitators included a representative of International Telecoms Union based in Barbados as well as an Assistant Professor of Psychiatry from the University of Florida. Teache...

    PUP leader campaigns in Twin Towns leading up to Municipal elections
    Municipal elections are to be held in March of next year. Already, the two major political parties are mobilizing and last week, Leader of the PUP, John Briceno, was on the ground in the Kontiki area of the Cayo North constituency. Briceno spoke about his party’ s readiness for the upcoming electio...

    24 Belizeans receive scholarships to study in Taiwan
    24 Belizean students have been awarded scholarships by the TaiwanICDF (Taiwan International Cooperation and Development Fund) Scholarship Program and the Taiwan Scholarship Program 2017. Both scholarship programs provide each scholarship recipient with a round trip ticket, accommodations, tuition fe...

    Breaking Belize NewsPJ

    Unemployment inches up says SIB
    Unemployment rose from 8 percent in April 2016, to 9 percent in 2017, according to the latest Labour Force Survey, released by the Statistical Institute of Belize (SIB). The data showed that there were over 2000 more unemployed people than there were last year, […]

    Belizean team dominates regional programming competition
    LXJ Code Belize, a team of programmers from Corozal Junior College, has taken first place in the (Caribbean Organization of National Telecommunications Organizations (CANTO) C.O.D.E 3.0 Virutal Hackaton, which was held from June 17-25,2017. The team, Luis Aguilar Jr, Joseph Roches and Michael Sabido, bested many Caribbean […]

    Boots US visa revoked?
    With the revocation of Minister Edmund Castro’s personal and diplomatic visas, there has been widespread speculation that some of his other Cabinet colleagues have had similar experiences. A local newspaper had claimed that Minister Anthony Boots Martinez also had his visas cancelled. Well today […]

    19 Belizeans awarded Taiwan Scholarships
    The International Cooperation and Development Fund (TaiwanICDF) is dedicated to boosting socio-economic development, enhancing human resources, and promoting economic relations in a range of developing partner countries. They also offer humanitarian assistance and provide aid in the event of natural disasters or international refugee […]

    Reward offered for stolen vehicle
    A reward of $1000 is being offered to recover a stolen vehicle. The vehicle was stolen from the Sit and Sip parking lot on Saturday, June 24, 2017 around 4am. The vehicle is a dark gray Saturn vue 2008. The owner is asking the public […]

    Man falls from roof of two-storey building in Placencia and dies
    A man fell off a two-storey building in Placencia this afternoon. The man has been identified as Ralston Williams, 32, a construction worker of Santa Cruz Village, southern Belize. Williams was pulling up an aluminum pipe when it touched a high tension wire nearby […]

    Gian Espadas charged for drug trafficking
    On Monday, BBN reported that Gian Espadas was caught with 12 pounds of weed. Yesterday, Espadas appeared in the Belize City Magistrate’s Court where he was charged for drug trafficking. Espadas pled not guilty to the charges and was released on $8,000 bail. He […]

    Boots shows up to testify
    Today, Port Loyal Area Representative, Anthony “Boots” Martinez appeared before the Senate Select Committee. However, he would not testify because the committee indicated that they were not ready for him. Boots in an interview with the media indicated that the hearings are a […]

    Western Dairies celebrates World Milk Day, launch of Ice Cream Ideal
    Earlier this month, Western Dairies celebrated global World Milk Day on June 2. Western Dairies in Belize joined in the celebration with the WD milking cow visiting schools and sharing milk with students. In Western Dairies locations countrywide, the event was also celebrated with […]

    Special-Ed student graduates in Stann Creek district
    Special Education student Reynaldo Pop graduated last Thursday from United Community Roman Catholic School in San Roman, Stann Creek. Pop marched up proudly to receive his primary school diploma. Pop continues to be an example for other special-ed students that want to continue to […]

    Police need public help to find murder suspect
    A 90-year-old shop keeper from August Pine Ridge was robbed and beaten by two Hispanic men almost two weeks ago. Pedro Pol was tied up and badly injured. His family took him to the hospital and he later succumbed to the injuries. The villagers caught […]

    WWF says Belize Barrier Reef not protected
    The World Wildlife Fund (WWF) issued a release stating that the Belizean government has failed to implement promised protections for the Belize Barrier Reef World Heritage site. According to the WWF, GOB is leaving the largest barrier reef in the western hemisphere under threat […]

    Gateway Youth Center summer camp 2017
    The Gateway Youth Center is partnering with leading NGOs, businesses and government agencies to start a collaborative discussion about improving the summer experiences of youths in the Belize District. The Belize Family Life Association (BFLA), Conscious Youth Development Program (CYDP), Feinstein Group of Companies, […]

    BDF graduate from Helicopter Conversion training
    The Belize Defense Force (BDF) will hold a graduation ceremony on Friday to honor four pilots and 13 technicians who have successfully completed a Helicopter Conversion training. The Graduation Ceremony will take place at the Belize Defence Force Air Wing Base, Williamson Hanger Complex, […]

    Westrac Ltd School Restoration program
    Westrac Ltd’s Belize Schools Restoration Program is almost completed. Westrac is proud of the changes made in this project and the effort given by the members of the Rotaract Clubs of Belize. Attached are photos from the work done at St Michael R.C. School […]

    Orange Walk residents invited to free concert tonight
    The National Institute of Culture and History (NICH) through the Banquitas House of Culture and the Embassy of The United States of America Arts Envoy to Belize will be staging a free concert tonight in Central Park, Orange Walk. They are inviting the public […]

    Blogs

    Macarons in Belize, courtesy of French bakery Delices de France
    You’ve probably heard of them…seen them in artful stacks, photographed and filtered just right for Instagram. ‘What are those beautifully colored pastries?’ you must have wondered. They are called Macarons, and are now available at Delices de France in San Pedro, Ambergris Caye, Belize. Delices de France is the first of its kind, authentically French bakery, churning out gorgeous pastries and breads for our lucky taste buds. Since it opened in March of 2017, locals and visitors alike line up for their chocolate croissants, baguettes, luscious petit fours, tarts and so much more. Their latest addition is sure to have fans going ga-ga!

    Hurricane Earl….nearly a year later….. San Pedro bounces back
    On August 4th, 2016, Hurricane Earl landed a devastating blow to the island of Ambergris Caye. Thankfully there were no deaths or major injuries, but nearly every dock, dive shop and restaurant located over the water was damaged or completely destroyed. I had been in Placencia when Hurricane Earl hit. Having been on the southern peninsula, we were fortunate to have lost only one small dive shop and dock with virtually very little additional damage. Nearly a year later, as we walk these beaches, it’s amazing to see the transformation since the damage from Hurricane Earl. Docks have been rebuilt, beaches have been reclaimed with beautiful white sand and seawalls that protect the beaches from erosion. Ramon’s Resort has rebuilt their dive shop and beautiful walkway along the beach. Xanadu Resort has added palapas and extended their beach. At the time, it was very difficult to imaging this little island would recover after the extensive damage. Thanks to the unbelievable hard work of everyone involved…….here are a few shots of the morning walk……even better than before!

    International Sourcesizz

    Rescuing the Vanishing Sounds of Central America’s Garifuna People
    In Tiny Belize, Old and Young Artists Unite to Reclaim a Musical Heritage. What reggae is to Jamaica and samba is to Brazil, Garifuna music is to my country of Belize, a small Central American nation wedged between Guatemala and Mexico. This vibrant music was brought to Belize by the Garifuna, or Garinagu, people, descendants of shipwrecked African slaves and Carib and Arawak Indians who were uprooted from their homeland in the Caribbean island of St. Vincent in 1796 and later settled in small communities along the coast of Belize, Honduras, Guatemala and Nicaragua. Not so long ago, this music was in danger of extinction, because its master practitioners were growing old and dying off, and the music was being lost to younger generations of Belizeans.

    Former Belize Minister Charged with Manslaughter
    Former Government Minister Elvin Penner has been charged in the death of a motorcyclist last weekend. Penner appeared in court yesterday afternoon and was granted $5,000 bail on charges of manslaughter by negligence, causing death by careless conduct, and driving without due care and attention. His SUV collided into a motorcycle ridden by security guard Kenrick Myvette last Friday night on the George Price Highway in the Cayo District. Myvette succumbed to his injuries early the next morning. After his arraignment, Penner said he was saddened that Myvette’s family now had to live without him.

    ISA Celebrates StandUp Paddle Inclusion at 2017 Central American Games, Held in Nicaragua
    The International Surfing Association (ISA) has expressed its joy following the announcement that StandUp Paddle (SUP), the Olympic Federation’s fastest growing discipline, will be added to the sports programme for the 2017 Central American Games, alongside Surfing, following the ISA application for the inclusion of both disciplines. The occasion will mark the first time that SUP has featured at the Central American Games, and is testament to the ongoing work being done by the ISA to develop and grow the discipline. The ISA is the only international federation to have ever applied for inclusion of SUP racing and succeeded in having it included in Olympic Movement Games, including in the Pan Am Games.

    Videos

  • Belize Cultural Celebrations Series Vol. 2: Carnaval, 16min.

  • Belize 2017 Island Hoppers Scuba, 8min. Island Hoppers Scuba Nashville Tn Belize Aggressor trip.

  • APEX Music!, 6min.

  • Hurricane preparedness and the work of the City Emergency Management Organization (CEMO), 28min.

  • The Rotary Club of Belize Sunrise & Pathlight International Teacher Training Conferences, 25min.

  • Pantempters promote series of concerts in commemoration of 25th anniversary, 24min.

  • Belize 2017, 15min. An adventure to Belize where we stayed in an amazing resort, saw ancient ruins, cave tubed through the jungle, and snorkeled the second largest barrier reef in the world.

  • Police drunk in Belize, 2min.

  • Belize: Week Two: Hopkins, 10min. Hopkins, Placencia, Bocawina original songs were copyrighted so edit is a bit rubbish now.

    June 28, 2017


    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, and other specials


    The San Pedro Sun

    No Worries quickly responds to their capsized boat
    On Thursday, June 22nd, a ‘No Worries Tours’ boat capsized outside of the reef near Mexico Rocks Marine Reserve. Fortunately, the three divers were underwater when the incident took place around 10:20AM. Due to the swift response, no one was injured. In their report to the Belize Port Authority (BPA), No Worries indicated that one of the star-board engines on the vessel had failed, causing the boat to flip over. “We made sure that our patrons were rescued, and after doing so, we went to retrieve the boat. We then made a full statement at the Belize Port Authority. The tourists were not on the vessel when the incident occurred, as they were diving,” said a representative of No Worries.

    Xcalak Championship game and Over 40 League held at Ambergris Stadium
    The Ambergris Stadium in San Pedro Town was the venue for two exciting football matches on Saturday, June 24th. The first game was for the Xcalak Championship, between Jokers F.C and the San Pedro Pirates F.C. This was followed by a match in the Over 40 League, between the San Pedro Veterans and Mango Creek Veterans. While the San Pedro and Mango Creek Veterans tied 0-0, Jokers FC triumphed over the San Pedro Pirates to win the Xcalak Championship. The League will be back on the island on Saturday, July 8th for another round of games. The San Pedro Sports Committee thanks all the teams for participating and continues encouraging football fans to always come out and support.

    Reina de La Costa Maya 2017 Presents: Miss Belize, Michelle Estrella Nuñez!
    Our fifth contestant in the 2017 Reina de La Costa Maya pageant is none other than Michelle Estrella Nuñez for Miss Belize! The exciting announcement by National Director of Miss America Latina Belize, Michael Arnold, was made on Tuesday, June 27th. Michelle is from San Pedro, Ambergris Caye and she aims to become the first Sampedrana to capture the Costa Maya crown. The 26 year-old, 5’6” (1.68m) beauty was a past Miss San Pedro (2014). She also represented Belize last year at Miss America Latina del Mundo in Mexico, where she not only captured the award for Best Original Costume but also gave Belize its highest, and thus far only, placement in this pageant. She placed 4th Runner-up (out of 19), besting delegates from Argentina, Australia, Canada, Mexico, Spain, among others.

    Misc Belizean Sources

    mzz

    APEX Music is making its debut in Belize
    Thank you to Samuel Haynes Institute of Excellence for such a warm welcome! Over 100 primary-level students joined our interactive workshop this morning, and Foreign Minister Elrington warmly welcomed the musicians to Belize!

    Street Repairs in San Pedro
    While we are experiencing a lot of street repairs, we remind the driving public that barriers and detour signs are placed at locations to protect the workers and other road users. It is not only illegal to ignore or move barriers and signs but also dangerous. Please respect the barriers and thank you for your co-operation.

    Nominate your Ocean Hero today!
    Oceana is pleased to announce nominations are now open for the 2017 Oceana Ocean Hero Award. This award recognizes and celebrates individuals who go above and beyond to ensure the protection of our oceans. Please include a brief summary of your reason(s) for nominating your candidate(s). Their impact can be local or national in scope. The award is open to individuals throughout Belize with interests in the ocean.

    MISS LOBSTER FEST PAGEANT ON CAYE CAULKER FRIDAY!

    The Board of Governors of Belize Humane Society has passed the following motion concerning the captivity of Big Red and other wildlife at Harvest Caye
    We have also sent a letter outlining our concerns to Prime Minister Barrow, Ministers Hulse and Figueroa (as Ministers responsible for environmental concerns), Belize Tourism Board and Norwegian Cruise Lines. We encourage our supporters to also make their views known, so that we can protect our wildlife from this type of exploitation. Our motion reads: "The Belize Humane Society opposes holding our Belizean wildlife in captivity at Harvest Caye or any other similar tourism facility. In particular, we call on the government to ensure that all wildlife currently held at Harvest Caye, including the Scarlet Macaw known as "Big Red", be released to a a bona fide wildlife rescue and rehabilitation organization such as Belize Bird Rescue. All decisions for the future of these animals should be made based on the best interests of the animal and overall conservation efforts. We also believe that failure to do so puts Belize's reputation as a responsible steward of the environment at risk, which has serious implications not only locally but internationally as well."

    BELIZE DEFENCE FORCE WILL HOLD GRADUATION CEREMONY FOR HELICOPTER CONVERSION TRAINING
    The Ministry of Defence wishes to inform the public that the Belize Defence Force (BDF) will hold a Graduation Ceremony to honour four (04) Pilots and thirteen (13) Technicians who have successfully completed a Helicopter Conversion Training. The Graduation Ceremony will take place on the 30 June 2017 at the Belize Defence Force Air Wing Base, Williamson Hanger Complex, commencing at 0900 hrs. The Helicopter Conversion training started on the 11 July 2016 and concluded on 26 June 2017 and covered a wide range of helicopter related subjects and practical exercises.

    EU FUNDS CAPACITY BUILDING IN THE TECHNICAL VOCATIONAL EDUCATION AND TRAINING (TVET) SECTOR
    The Ministry of Economic Development & Petroleum and the Ministry of Education, Culture, Youth & Sports have signed a contract with GFA Consulting Group of Germany for BZ$2.6 million for a TVET Capacity Building and Professional Development Training Programme. The GFA Team has mobilized to Belize to begin the inception phase of this 18-month contract with their partners, Sequa of Germany and the University of the West Indies. This Training Contract, funded by the European Union under the Banana Accompanying Measures 2013, has as its objective to increase the capacity of TVET Management and Instructors in the northern Toledo and Stann Creek Districts to deliver quality training to students. This will support the implementation of the Belize Education Sector Strategy, which has identified improving the quality and relevance of TVET as an appropriate vehicle for ensuring that a greater number of graduates gain appropriate employment in work related to their qualification, or progress to further education and training.

    Mr. Rosendo "Papi" Graniel passes away
    Mayor Daniel Guerrero, the San Pedro Town Council and Staff would like to extend its sincere condolences to the Graniel friends and family on the passing of Mr. Rosendo "Papi" Graniel. Mr. Graniel was a fishing pioneer in San Pedro where he contributed in the development of San Pedro town. May his soul rest in peace.

    Farmer's Deli in Corozal Today
    Come today in front of the Corozal House of culture to see what the Farmer's Deli has to offer. Meat, bread, sauce and more. 9am tomorrow, see you there. click below to see the past event.

    Belizean writers and aspiring writers, you've gotta check this out!
    Six whole days in San Pedro doing nothing but write, write, write, receive coaching from award-winning writers and New York based literary agents, learn about publishing, write some more, attend yoga classes, meditate, etc, etc. Did I mention it will be right here in Belize, in San Pedro??? Please share and spread the word. If you are interested in this event, you're might be staying at the hotel. even if you are a resident of San Pedro.

    2nd annual Ancient World Week
    Registration is on for the 2nd annual Ancient World Week coming in July. Learn about the Maya in Northern Belize with archaeologists from the Institute of Archaeology (NICH) and Northwestern University. Call 422-0071, message or visit us to register. Participation is free!

    Fast Internet service is here in Corozal by BeeLine Internet
    Beeline has arrived!! Providing FAST, RELIABLE Internet service to those living in: * Corozal Town * Santa Rita * Paraiso * Xaibe * College Road * San Andres and Corozal Bay. Contact us today for more information. ****.NO INSTALLATION **** NO RENTAL OF EQUIPMENT **** NO HIDDEN FEES Sign up with us today and get FREE NETFLIX or ROKU PLAYERS.

    Noche Cultural: Homage to Los Chicleros
    The Benque House of Culture is having a special cultural homage to the Chicleros, including testimonials about the life of a chiclero and stories about the industry. Los Hijos del West will be playing. It'll be at the Chiclero Park on Saturday, July 1st, and it starts at 5:30pm. "Gearing for Noche Cultural - Homage to Los Chicleros, an industry that bloomed during the Golden Years in Benque Viejo Del Carmen! Make it a date at the Chiclero Park, July 1st, 2017 starting at 5:30 p.m."

    Belikin Light
    Belikin has started making a light beer. They had a big launch party with Chef Sean doing his magic. They have a video from the celebration. Belikin Light has a lower calorie count, and the alcohol content measures 3.8%. When's the chocolate light coming out?

    Youth Empowerment Camp 2017
    The 2017 Youth Empowerment Camp will be on July 17th and 18th at Sacred Heart Junior College. Contact the Cayo DYS office at 804-0540 for more information. Thanks, DYS! "Summer is here once again, the Department of Youth Services San Ignacio and Santa Elena are now Recruiting youth ages 12 - 24 for our 2017 Youth Empowerment Camp which will be held at Sacred Heart Junior College on July 17 - 18"

    PLACENCIA LOBSTER FESTIVAL 2017!
    Amidst the enticing aroma of sizzling lobsters, bask on the golden beach of Placencia peninsula as the sweep of the Caribbean Sea breeze provides coolness under the tropical sunrays. Experiencing the 2017 Placencia Lobster Festival (June 23rd – 25th) is an adventure that encompasses all aspects of Belize: culturally-inspired foods, performances, friendly people and of course spectacular natural views.

    APEX Music on AltunHa!
    Thank you, Institute of Archaeology

    Dia de San Pedro Calendar of Events

    Dia de San Pedro
    Join us as we pay tribute & honour the patron saint of San Pedro. A night of cultural dances, mariachi music and live entertainment. Wednesday, June 28th @ 8:00 pm

    Channel 7

    Teakettle Family Gets Closure After Loved One Found Dead, Now They want Justice
    Teakettle Resident Markey Mendez had been missing for 5 days - but his family knew he was dead, and finally tonight, they have closure after a search team found the 24 year old's body yesterday evening around 6:00. It was found not too far from his home - near the old Warrie Head Bridge. An on-site post mortem revealed that Mendez had been shot to the head. Although the family is relieved that they found their loved one's body, they are very much broken by his murder and want police to find the man who did it. I was at the scene when they carried Mendez's body out.

    Penner Criminally Charged, Asks Forgiveness From Victim's Family
    On Friday night, Elvin Penner knocked down and killed 41 year-old Unitedville resident Kenrick Myvett, while trying to overtake another vehicle on the George Price Highway. Well, this afternoon, he was arraigned at the San Ignacio Magistrate's Court on the criminal charges of manslaughter by negligence, causing death by careless conduct, and driving a motor vehicle without due care and attention. After his arraignment, Penner granted the entire press an interview, something which he certainly hasn't done after his tumble from grace in 2013. Daniel Ortiz takes a look at his day in court:

    Castro Company Gian Espadas To Court
    Yesterday we told you about Gian Espadas. A week and a half ago he was caught alongside Wasani and Jafari Castro transporting 89 cases of contraband beer. While that matter was settled out of court, Espadas made an appearance in the Magistrate's Court today after being charged with drug trafficking. Police arrested the 22 year old on Sunday after intercepting him in a vehicle with about 12 pounds of marijuana. He pled not guilty to the charges, and was released on $8000 bail. Espadas also had to hand over his passport and agree not to leave the country without the court's permission. The case was adjourned until September 1st.

    Wanted For Killing 90 year Old Shopkeeper
    12 days ago, Pedro Pol, a 90 year old shopkeeper from August Pine Ridge was robbed and beaten by two Hispanic men. When his family found him tied up on the floor of his small shop, Pol was severely injured, and by the time he got to the hospital, less that two hours after the incident, he was dead. Police have identified at least one of the men responsible for the heinous crime, and are asking for the public's assistance in locating him. They are looking for 26-year-old Guinea Grass resident Amin Ricardo Cho. Cho is a Belizean of Hispanic descent and stands at about 5' 5''. If anyone has seen him or has any information about his whereabouts, they are asked to contact the Orange Walk Police at 322-2022, call 911, or inform your nearest police department.

    Cop Caught KO'd On Camera
    A police constable is feeling the full wrath of social media after a most unfortunate scene caught on camera. PC 1319 Florencio Rash attached to Precinct One in Belize City was caught apparently knocked out on the pavement at what looks to be the Belmopan bus station - his police regulation hat and handcuffs strewn on the ground. He is in front of a food stand - and appears that he may have been sitting before he passed out. Rash is seen quickly regaining consciousness, and then trying - with little success - to pick up the cuffs - which he then nonchalantly tosses into the police hat. Rash then struggles to his feet, where he starts to walk forward, and the cell phone video grapher cuts it there.

    GSU Gets Weed, Man Pleads
    Yesterday on Raccoon Street, a GSU patrol saw a man dash through the back door of a house and throw a bag over the fence. The officers stopped and apprehended the man, along with two others in the house. They retrieved the bag which contained about 3 ounces of marijuana from the neighboring yard. The three men, identified as Anthony Crawford, Bruce Reneau and Fredrick Smith were arrested and charged with drug trafficking. The trio appeared in the Magistrate's Court today, where Smith took the blame and pled guilty to the charge. According to reports, Smith initially intended to plea guilty for the lesser charge of possession, which the prosecution had already agreed to accept. However, when Smith was read the original charge of trafficking, he mistakenly said that he was guilty. The plea was recorded, and Smith was fined $10,000, which he has until December to pay or spend three years in prison.

    Putting A Target On Cyberbullying
    As technology and the internet continue to play larger roles in our daily lives, ensuring the safety of everyone online is becoming a higher priority. Already cyber bullying has presented itself as a huge threat to the well being of students, as well as adults using social media. So far, Belize, does not have any concrete legislation to protect people from cyber crime, but as need grows, different organizations and governmental entities are working to change that. Today the Ministry of Education hosted a workshop to develop and implement a Regional Cyberbullying Manual. We spoke Sylvester Cadet, one of the consultants of the project, about why it is so needed...

    Hon. Briceno Says Even Without Increased GST, Belizean Still Paying More
    On this newscast you've heard the Prime Minister and the Deputy Prime Minister say an emphatic "no" the the IMF's recommendation that the rate of GST be increased to 15%. And while that may be consoling, the Leader of the Opposition says don't be fooled - you are still paying increased taxes in other ways. He had these remarks at a Corozal municipal convention: Hon. John Briceno, Leader of the Opposition: "The Prime Minister had not raised GST. He raise environmental tax, the cost to buy US. These things have a direct impact on any and everything that you buy."

    Hon. Briceno Says We Live In A Country of Two Sets Of Laws
    The Opposition Leader also commented on the recent case involving the sons of Minister Edmond Castro. He says that it appears we live in a country of two sets of laws: Hon. John Briceno, Leader of the Opposition: "People believe that there is almost two types of justice in this country; one for the UDP ministers, their families and their cronies and one for the rest of us." "Look at the recent developments - we have the Castro brothers. Their vehicle has no license plates, they have no permits to show that have the permission to drive this vehicle."

    BDF's Chopper Pilots Ready
    Last year in September, we showed you how the BDF's Pilots were getting training to fly the 3 Helicopters that they currently own. They are preparing to provide the Belize military with their own air support, and the BDF announced today that the trainees are now graduates. On this coming Friday, The Ministry of Defense will hold a graduation ceremony to recognize 4 BDF pilots and 13 technicians who have completed the helicopter conversion training.

    Car Their Caught, But Stolen Car Still Missing
    Tonight a desperate Belize City car owner is asking for your help to recover her 2008 Saturn Vue. Here's how it was stolen: the owner Linda Turner was at the Sit and Sip bar on Saturday morning. Now, according to court reports, she didn't have a key for the vehicle so she took out the battery when she went to Sit and Sip. But a resourceful car thief came along, slapped his own battery in and zoomed off. Police have caught the alleged car thief, 21 year old Jahleel Goodger a Belize City Car Washer who is in jail tonight, spending his first night on remand after being denied bail for stealing the SUV valued at $17,000.

    Belikin, One More Beer Being Brewed
    Ask anyone sober or drunk and they'll tell you there's no shortage of beer offerings at the corner store or at bars and nightclub's. But the folks at the Belikin Brewery - who already bottle 6 beers - think there's a market niche that hasn't been filled. It's for a light beer, targeting the health conscious market who are watching their calorie intake. And, so, enter Belikin Light beer, which is being introduced to the market at the beginning of July.

    Belize Fails Trafficking In Persons Test, Again
    The US State Department has issued its 2017 Trafficking in Persons Report - and just like the last two years, the Americans say Belize is the worst trafficking offender in Central America, and comparable only to Haiti and Suriname in the Caribbean. According to the report - which was released yesterday - "Belize is a source, transit, and destination country for men, women, and children subjected to sex trafficking and forced labor." It adds that in tourist areas, mainly US tourists seeking child sex "exploit child sex trafficking victims." It adds that "Sex trafficking and forced labor of Belizean and foreign women and girls, primarily from Central America, occur in bars, nightclubs, brothels, and domestic service."

    European Union Helps ITVETS
    The Ministry of Education is hoping to increase enrollment and interest in ITVET'S and the European Union is helping. Along with the the Ministry of Economic Development, they today signed a $2.6 million contract for a T-VET Capacity Building and Professional Development Training Programme. It is funded by the European Union under the Banana Accompanying Measures 2013 - and the German firm called GFA Consulting Group will carry out the 18-month contract. We found out at the contract signing in Belmopan that it's about finding a match for the marketplace:

    Football Strategic Plan On Hold
    As we showed you last night, the Football Federation of Belize is again in disarray after they had to abort their congress on Sunday. That Congress was supposed to elect a new president and it failed - the second congress in a row where that has happened. It was also supposed to approve a new budget which it did not. A look at that budget leaked on Facebook shows a top heavy FFB spending 63% of its money on administration, $593,000 of that going to salaries. President Marlon Kuylen defends the works he has done pointing to a strategic plan which cannot be implemented now because the FFB is basically in a frozen state:...

    Channel 5

    Charged Elvin Penner “sorry” he didn’t see cyclist coming
    Former Minister Elvin Penner is home tonight on bail; this afternoon he was arraigned for manslaughter by negligence of Kenrick Myvette, a motorist who was killed on Friday night. Penner [...]

    Mark Mendez found dead; family says goodbye as hunt begins for killer
    It had been expected, but the loss of twenty-four year old Mark Mendez of Teakettle, Cayo District, hurts no less for his family and the village. The five-day saga that [...]

    Mom forgives Akeem Guzman’s killer but wants to know why
    Police are looking, but no one has been detained for the murder of twenty-one year old San Ignacio resident, Akeem Guzman. Guzman was shot once to the back by a [...]

    What happened to Corporal Florencio Rash? Internal probe coming
    The images of a seemingly drunken cop captured by video and posted on social media has been trending all day. The cop, dressed in uniform, has been identified as Police [...]

    Amin Cho of Guinea Grass sought for shopkeeper’s murder
    Police are also turning to the public for assistance in locating a man believed to be responsible for the murder of Pedro Pol, an elderly shopkeeper from the village of [...]

    City Mayor weighs entertainment and residents’ concerns along ‘party strip’
    Belize City Mayor Darrell Bradley has found himself in quite a pickle, following a leaked memo last Thursday in which he single-handedly served notice to bar owners operating in the [...]

    Darrell Bradley defends “reactive” policies
    On Friday afternoon, the Belize City Council held a caucus meeting to address the issue of the entertainment strip.  News Five understands that a majority of the councilors who attended [...]

    Area resident Valerie Woods says don’t stop the party, just be responsible
    According to Valerie Woods, a resident in the immediate vicinity of the Pickwick Club, while the problems they have been facing are indeed bothersome, it wasn’t expected that the mayor [...]

    CitCo not to blame for proposal to change Carnival route
    The annual carnival road march is at least three months away and there is already controversy brewing as a result of a proposal to reroute the parade from the Princess [...]

    Castro associate Gian Espadas charged for 12 pounds of weed
    Gian Espadas, friend and associate of the Castro Brothers, was charged with drug trafficking today. Twenty-two-year-old Espadas, a UB student of Belize City, was arraigned on a single charge of [...]

    Mayor endorses fellow councilors; says it’s about the work
    The United Democratic Party is gearing up for the upcoming municipal elections in Belize City.  Eight councilor candidates are so far officially in the run for local government in March [...]

    Works Ministry says it will stick to final evaluation for Felix Castillo’s land
    On Monday, we brought you the exclusive story of Felix Castillo, whose land in the Santa Elena area Government took over, along with other landowners, for purposes of building the [...]

    Negotiations open but funds are limited, says C.E.O.
    The use of the land, according to Gentle, is not a primary concern for the compensation payment. C.E.O. Gentle reiterated the Government’s willingness to continue negotiations and avoid a trip [...]

    A school manual to fight cyberbullying
    With an estimated one in three of all internet users in the world today being below the age of eighteen, children and young people are facing increased safety risks when [...]

    The Beer of Belize in a lighter form
    Beer drinkers across the country, here’s something to excite your taste buds.  Belize Brewing Company is rolling out a new beer from its production line, just in time for the [...]

    KTV the Remix: First live show tonight
    You don’t have to wait too much longer… because the show you have been anticipating is finally here. Start your summer with us as KTV Remix premieres tonight at the [...]

    CTV3

    Wanted Poster Issued For Man Suspected To Have Murdered 90 Year Old August Pine Ridge Resident
    The Orange Walk Police Department has issued a wanted poster for the man who they believe murdered ninety year old Pedro Pol approximately two weeks ago in the village of August Pine Ridge. He is twenty six year old Amin Ricardo Cho, a resident of Guinea Grass Village. Cho is of Hispanic descent, measures about five feet five inches in height, and has brown eyes and sharp nose.

    Another Black-eye For Belize Police Department.
    This past week was celebrated as Police week and throughout the country officers planned various activities geared at regaining the confidence of the public and clearing the department’s image which does not actually stand out with the community at the moment in sight of a series of scandals involving rogue cops. But while the department has been working overtime to build that relationship with the community, tonight it is facing another embarrassment following a video which went viral on social media today starring an officer in uniform seemingly intoxicated on the streets of Belmopan.

    Oppositio Leader Weighs In On IMF Recommendations
    Ten days ago, an IMF team concluded an official 10-day visit to Belize conducting what is called an Article IV consultation. The visit was followed by the release of a preliminary statement in which the global financial institution warned that despite having renegotiated its external debt, Belize’s economy continued to face serious challenges. The IMF indicated that growth in 2017 is projected to average just under 2 percent in the medium-term, due to declining productivity, competitiveness, public investment, and further decrease in oil output. That projection is below the mandatory 3% which the Government has committed to the bondholders. Among the key issues raised by the IMF is that Belize needs further fiscal consolidation for long-term sustainability.

    PUP Prepares For Municipal Election
    Last night we showed you the spirited launching of the Oppositions municipal team for Corozal Town led by 5-time Mr. Belize winner Rigo Vellos. This is the first municipal slate in the entire country, and according to PUP leader Hon. John Briceno who travelled to Corozal Town to endorse the candidates, his Party is making extra efforts to have teams set in place in every other municipality.

    Opposition Leader Says COMPOL Must Go
    PUP Leader Hon. John Briceno also took the time to respond to a number of issues that have been on the front burner lately, commencing with the swift release of the Castro brothers after they were detained for traffic violations and for assaulting a police officer in Belize City. Briceno said that the actions of the Police when it comes to wrong doing by UDP Ministers or their families and close friends continue to show that there are two versions of laws in Belize.

    LOVE FM

    Pacheco to Reappear Before Senate Select Committee
    Immigration Clerk One, Ady Pacheco, is expected to reappear before the Special Senate Select Committee tomorrow morning. This will be Pacheco’s third appearance before the committee. She is the one who received the incomplete Wong Hong Kim file from former minister Elvin Penner. During her testimony last week, Pacheco said she did so because she […]

    Flash Flood Leaves Minimal Damages As Affected Communities Receive Aid
    Residents in low lying areas in San Ignacio and Bullet Tree Village are recovering from the damages caused by a flash flood on Saturday June 24. Officials of the National Emergency Management Organization, NEMO, were in the affected areas to conduct an assessment on Monday. Al Westby, Central Regional Coordinator told us today the damages […]

    Video of Cop Goes Viral; Internal Investigation Underway
    A video of a police officer lying on the ground and apparently under the influence has gone viral on Facebook. 28-year-old, police constable 1319 Florencio Rash is in trouble tonight after a video surface of him lying on the ground near the Belmopan bus terminal. He was in his uniform and appears to be under […]

    Belize Votes In Favour of OAS Resolution on Venezuela
    At a meeting of the Organization of American States on June 19 in Cancun, Mexico, the motion to have several friendly Caribbean countries mediate in the Venezuelan crisis was shot down after the proposal did not meet the approval of the majority. It was a shocking outcome as even the Miami Herald has asked, “How […]

    Former Gov’t Minister Entangled In Yet Another Controversy
    San Ignacio Police say former Government Minister, Elvin Penner will likely face charges for manslaughter after he knocked down and killed 41 year-old Kenrick Anthony Myvette, a resident of Unitedville. The accident happened shortly before seven o’clock Friday night. Police say that Penner told them he was heading towards San Ignacio in his dark green […]

    Young Akeem Gunned Down on Flamingo Street
    Police in San Ignacio Town are investigating the fatal shooting of 21-year-old, Akeem Guzman who was gunned down on Sunday morning while on Flamingo Street. Hipolito Novelo reports. GERALDINE JONES-FLORES “You could see that something was bothering him and he said everything was okay and I asked him where he was coming from at that […]

    PlusTV

    San Ignacio man shot in the back by masked man
    A San Ignacio man was shot in the back and killed early Saturday night. Sometime around 12:50 a.m., 21 year old Akeem Guzman arrived at a friend’s home on Flamingo Avenue, San Ignacio Town. He had just arrived and was speaking to a minor while sitting on a crate at the corner of the yard. According...

    Teakettle Residents block highway to get police attention in missing man case
    On Saturday afternoon, billowing black smoke could be seen over the George Price Highway in the village of Teakettle. That’s because frustrated residents placed burning tires across the highway, blocking traffic for about half hour until police arrived and cleared the highway. The reason? To get the...

    Elvin Penner served with NIP in fatal traffic accident
    Former Minister of Immigration, Elvin Penner, was served with a Notice of Intended prosecution after he knocked down and killed a man on Friday night. According to Penner’s account to police, just before 7 o’clock that night, he was driving his Green 2000 Ford Excursion from Belmopan to Cayo on the...

    Man knocked down in Roaring Creek
    There was another accident this morning on the George Price Highway in Roaring Creek Village. An elderly man, Lucio Ochoa, was riding a bicycle shortly before eleven this morning on the highway in his village when he was hit by a white pickup truck. The driver of the pickup, Rosalio Moralez, told po...

    Accident in PG
    There was another traffic accident reported this weekend. On Friday evening, a white Toyota Fore Runner was seen near the Punta Gorda Town junction. It appears the driver lost control of the vehicle and somehow ended up in a watery ditch off the road. There has been no reports of injuries in this in...

    Corozal businessman robbed of over 50 thousand dollars
    A Corozal businessman was robbed of over 50 thousand dollars on Friday evening. 34-year-old Avinash Deshmukh, Indian National and store manager of Corozal Town, reported that on Friday, 23rd June, at around 1:20 p.m., he flew from Ranchito Village via 1:30 p.m. flight to San Pedro Town, leaving his ...

    Woman stabs boyfriend twice
    There is a report of a stabbing in Stann Creek. According to reports, 28 year old Thompson Orlando Guttierez told police that he and his common law wife, 24 year old Lucia Chan, were having an argument when Can stabbed him to the back and chest. Police say they have detained Can pending charges. ...

    Amandala

    Special treatment for Elvin Penner
    Former UDP Minister of State, Elvin Penner, 45, is under a dark cloud again after reportedly causing the death of a motorcyclist while trying to overtake a minivan on the George Price Highway at about 7:00 p.m. on Friday. According to information provided by police, sometime before 7:00 on Friday night, Penner, who was travelling from Belmopan to San Ignacio Town, attempted to overtake a red Pontiac Montana minivan near the Running W Office between Central Farm and Esperanza. When he was side by side with the minivan, Penner saw a red and black motorcycle approaching from the opposite direction. Penner reportedly swerved to the right, to avoid colliding with the motorcycle, but his vehicle hit the left side of the minivan.

    Bert Vasquez’s Supreme Court trial begins on Wednesday
    –Bert Vasquez, 35, who has been on remand at the Belize Central Prison for the murder of Jasmine Lowe, 13, who was killed in June 2012, in the Cayo District, is waiting for his day in court to answer to that murder charge. In the meantime, he will have to answer to other charges brought against him. This Wednesday, he is scheduled to go on trial in the Supreme Court of Justice Adolph Lucas where he will face a three-count indictment for forcible abduction, harm and aggravated assault. The allegation against Vasquez is that on May 13, 2011, he forcibly abducted a 16-year-old minor and took her to an area of Vista Del Mar in Ladyville. He is being defended by attorney Oscar Selgado, while the Crown’s evidence will be led by Crown counsel, Sheringe Rodriguez.

    Freddy Blanco, 22, gets 17 years for shooting death of girlfriend
    After being on remand for 6 years for the shooting death of his girlfriend, Nelsi Chuc, 21, in August 2011, Freddy Amir Blanco, 22, was yesterday given a 17-year sentence by the Supreme Court judge, Justice Herbert Lord, at his trial during the Northern Session of the Supreme Court in Orange Walk Town yesterday. However, the six years he spent on remand was deducted from the time he is to spend in prison, so he will only serve 11 years in jail. Police said that in August 2011, Amir Blanco, then 16, was with his girlfriend, Chuc, and another woman, smoking cannabis in a cane-field in August Pine Ridge in Orange Walk when they became involved in an argument over who smoked the most marijuana.

    Akeem Alexander Guzman, 21, fatally shot on Flamingo Avenue
    The Cayo District has recorded yet another homicide, the fourth within the last nine days. The latest victim has been officially identified as San Ignacio resident, Akeem Alexander Guzman, 21. According to reports, Akeem went to visit a friend on Flamingo Avenue in San Ignacio Town a little before 1:00 on Sunday morning. They were socializing, when a single shot rang out, hitting Guzman, who was in a sitting position, in the back. He was quickly transported, to the San Ignacio Community Hospital, where he took his last breath. Initial police investigations reveal that a masked man, dressed in full black, emerged from nearby bushes and opened fire on the men.

    Gian Espadas, 22, busted with 12 pounds of weed
    Belize City resident, Gian Espadas, 22, who was busted with 12 pounds of cannabis at about 11:00 this morning in West Landivar, Belize City, has been taken into custody and charged with drug trafficking. This is Espadas’ second major run-in with law enforcement personnel in just over a week. Just 8 days ago, he, along with two sons of Minister Edmond Castro, was busted in Orange Walk with 89 cases of contraband beer, valued at $6,200. Incidentally, Espadas was released from the custody of Customs officials and police when the Castro brothers made arrangements for out-of-court settlement for the contraband goods.

    Dissatisfied villagers burn tires in bid for more police action in case of missing man
    Teakettle residents, dissatisfied with the efforts police have made to find a missing villager, made a giant blaze on the George Price Highway this morning, Saturday, June 24. Mark Menzies, 23, was reported missing after he left home around 11:30 Wednesday night and did not return. The villagers piled tires on the highway, and lit them, slowing down traffic on the highway for about an hour. The Belmopan Fire Service and the Belmopan Police were called to the scene, to put out the blaze and clear the debris off the highway. Motorists who were in a haste to get on with their business were able to divert to a dirt road to get around the village and back on to the highway.

    INTEROFFICE BASKETBALL – “In the Paint”
    Interoffice basketball defending champs, Belize Bank Bulldogs won their season opener against Belize Telemedia Limited last Friday night at the St. Martin de Porres Swift Hall Auditorium by the final score of 82-78. Roscoe Rhys led his team with 22 points on 7 of 17 shooting from the field, while teammates Quincey Lopez and Roderick Williams contributed 18 pts and 15 pts, respectively. The Bulldogs jumped out to the early 23-16 first-quarter lead, and was able to essentially control both ends of the court for most of the game. Jason Vasquez of BTL was the game high scorer, hitting for 23 pts on 9 of 17 shots from the field. Lennox Bowman made his presence felt by totaling 16 pts 4 rebounds, while Chadwick Ysaguirre had 11 pts 5 rebs.

    Smart Mundialito semifinals completed; Finals this Sunday at MCC
    The 6th Annual Smart Mundialito 13 & Under football tournament had its knockout semifinal games on Saturday, June 24, at the MCC Grounds, after 12 participating teams had completed a full round-robin of competition, with the top 4 teams pairing off in the semifinals. It was high drama in both games on Saturday, as game 1 featured a first time playoff entrant, #4 seed Heights FC (19 points) from Mahogany Heights, and #1 seed Hattieville Riverside Boys (25 pts), a former champion who were undefeated in regular season; and game 2 that would see the reigning champions, #3 seed City Boys (22 pts) going up against #2 seed Ladyville Rising Stars (23 pts), who were also undefeated in regular season.

    Rural Softball completes 1st round; All Star Game this Sunday
    The Belize Rural Female Softball Tournament 2017 competed the first round of its double round-robin regular season yesterday with 3 games played in Flowers Bank. There are seven (7) teams participating in the tournament, namely: Lords Bank Sunrise (Lords Bank); Unity (Double Head); Orchid Girls (Burrell Boom); Easy Does It (Flowers Bank); Power Outage (Crooked Tree); Beverly Hills Flames (Lords Bank); and Arrows United (Bermudian Landing). In game 1 yesterday, United defeated Power Outage, 15-5, behind winning pitcher (WP) Herlette Clarke; while the losing pitcher (LP) was Yvette Flowers. Game 2 saw Lords Bank Sunrise shutting out Beverly Hills Flames, 10-0. WP – Karen Hilton; LP – Alberta Bailey. And in game 3, it was Orchid Girls, 14-7, over Easy Does It. WP – Valorie Vernon; LP – Margaret Hendy.

    No quorum, no elections; Marlon Kuylen remains Acting President after failed FFB Congress
    It was a different plot from last year, but a similar ending at the 2nd floor of the Princess Ramada Hotel in Belize City over the weekend, where the Football Federation of Belize (FFB) twice attempted to convene its 10th Ordinary Congress, where elections for President and a Vice President were items on the agenda; and twice it was unsuccessful. No quorum was reached; and so, no elections could be held. Therefore, Acting President Marlon Kuylen will continue in that post until further notice. On Saturday, with everything in place, and CONCACAF representative Marco Leal in attendance, only 4 members appeared, where 5 members were needed to make a quorum. The meeting was therefore aborted until Sunday morning; but again a quorum could not be reached.

    Editorial: Step up, Ras
    October 12 of this year will mark 525 years since Christopher Columbus, an Italian in the employ of the king and queen of Spain, entered the so-called New World in the name of Spain and of European Christianity. Led by Spain, various European nations began to seize the lands of the native peoples of the Americas (people who used to be called “Indians” but are now referred to as “Indigenous” populations), and then the Europeans began to enslave Africans and transport them across the Atlantic Ocean to develop the lands which the Europeans had seized from the Indigenous peoples of the Americas. In the official narrative which is taught to Belizean children, the Christian schools say that when British pirates began to settle in Belize in the first part of the seventeenth century, there was no one here. All the Mayan buildings and sites which have survived in Belize from the Rio Hondo to the Sarstoon, however, prove that there were Indigenous peoples who lived and worked here before the so-called Baymen came, and so the question would be: when did those Indigenous people leave, or was it that they went into hiding when they saw the Baymen.

    From the Publisher
    About three weeks ago, Maurice Jones brought the 77-year-old photograph to me which is reproduced on this page. He said that one Nick Sanchez had given it to him. I didn’t get a chance to find out any details about Nick Sanchez, because I was so busy trying to identify the legendary football players/athletes in the photo. The writing on the photo says it is from 1940, but there is some confusion as to how many of the players are from the famous Crimson football team, because this is also supposed to be an All Belize selection. It is distinctly pointed out that Louis Guild, who is second from right in the back row, is actually from the Police team. But there is no other such distinction made. (When I discussed this with my dad, he was positive(?) Louis Guild never played for the Police, and he mentioned that Jim Stephen was MYA.) In the row of five players who are kneeling, second from left is Emilio Sanchez, who later became Jamaica’s national boxing coach for many years.

    Intersex rights lobby at OAS opposed by Latin American legislators
    There has been no official report coming out of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs on Belize’s participation last week in the 47th General Assembly of the Organization of American States (OAS) in neighboring Mexico—an event which has been making international headlines because of the enduring impasse on the crisis in Venezuela, in the backdrop of which the OAS had to suspend its meeting to adopt a resolution on a proposed mechanism to help end the deadly political unrest in the country known to be one of Belize’s most influential diplomatic allies. Whereas the split in the CARICOM vote at the OAS General Assembly resulted in the defeat of a US-backed motion for OAS intervention in the Venezuelan crisis—with Belize and 5 other CARICOM nations voting “yes,” but 6 others abstaining and 2 flatly rejecting the proposed resolution—the issue has overshadowed other matters addressed at the event. The church community here in Belize has nevertheless taken note of a less publicized development in Mexico in the run-up to the OAS meeting.

    Convicted murderer arraigned for attack on court reporter
    Four months after he attacked freelance court reporter Anita Nembhard-Flowers, convicted murderer Byron James was brought to court to answer to a charge of harm. James, 31, appeared before Chief Magistrate Ann Marie Smith and pleaded not guilty to the charge. The allegation against James is that on Thursday, February 16, 2017, the same day he was convicted of the murder of Frank Vasquez, as he was being led away along with other prisoners he rushed over and attacked Nembhard-Flowers, who was photographing the prisoners. James hit her in the face, causing a wound to her nose. Nembhard-Flowers was treated at the Karl Heusner Memorial Hospital, where Doctor Aline Gonzalez classified her injury as harm.

    http://amandala.com.bz/news/video-surveillance-footage-aided-police-arrest-kashief-gallego-murder/
    The man who allegedly pumped three bullets into the back of Jermaine Franklin, 36, last Wednesday evening at a video store on King Street, hid his face from court reporters’ cameras as he was led from the court’s holding cell to the courtroom of Senior Magistrate Sharon Fraser to be arraigned on the murder charge. Magistrate Fraser read the charge to Kashief Gallego, 25, which stated that “…on Wednesday, June 21, 2017 you caused the death of Jermaine Franklin by unlawful means, in Belize City, in the Belize Judicial District…” After reading the charge, Magistrate Fraser asked Gallego if he understood what she had just read to him. Gallego, an unemployed resident of East Collet Canal Street, replied that he understood.

    Court of Appeal ruled that Gilbert Henry’s constitutional right to a speedy trial was violated
    There is a legal maxim that says, “Justice delayed is justice denied.” At the close of its June session last Friday, the Court of Appeal handed down an important decision in Criminal Appeal No. 15 of 2012 between Gilbert Henry and The Queen. On September 14, 2008 Gilbert Henry was in an altercation with Ellis Taibo that resulted in him stabbing Taibo in the chest. He was charged with the usual indictable offences of attempted murder and dangerous harm. When the trial came up some four years later, in 2012, a jury returned a verdict of not guilty of attempted murder, but guilty of dangerous harm.

    Breaking Belize NewsPJ

    Belikin launches new light beer
    Belize Brewing Company, which produces Belize’s most famous beer, Belikin, held a brief ceremony this morning at its brewery in Ladyville, Belize to announce the launch of its new line of beer, Belikin Light. Belikin Light will hit stores countrywide starting July and the […]

    Northern Regional Hospital gets operating theater
    Picture: Corozal Daily After more than a year, the Northern Regional Hospital has received a new operating theater. Yesterday a ceremony was held to open the new urgently needed building. CEO in the Ministry of Health, Ramon Figueroa and former Cabinet Minister, Gaspar Vega […]

    Belizean completes 100 mile race in United States
    The Westen State Endurace Run website revealed that Belizean National, Kim Espat, 32, completed a hundred mile race over the weekend in the United States. Of the 369 runners, Espat came in 48th overall and ranked 36th of all the male runners. He crossed […]

    Elvin Penner charged for manslaughter
    Police have confirmed that former Immigration Minister, Elvin Penner has been charged for manslaughter by negligence, causing death by careless conduct, and driving without due care and attention. Penner’s vehicle collided into a motorcycle on Friday night on the George Price Highway near Running W in […]

    Video of intoxicated police officer goes viral on social media
    Today, a video of an intoxicated police officer was posted on social media. The officer has been identified as PC Florencio Rash. Rash is seen near a bus terminal in Belmopan City with his cap and handcuffs on the ground. According to reports, Rash was […]

    Corozal cops bust 4 men with weed
    Corozal cops have detained four men for trafficking drugs. At around 5 yesterday evening, Corozal cops were conducting a mobile patrol in Corozal Town when they saw a green Toyota Corola Taxi. Two men then exited the vehicle at an unnamed restaurant and shortly […]

    More motorcycles stolen
    Aside from the motorcycle stolen from Pelican Street in Belize City, cops in the old capital are investigating two other stolen motorcycles. Juan Jose Martinez, reported that between 23.06.17 at 10:00 p.m. and 25.06.17 at 6:00 a.m., his black 2014 Skygo brand motorcycle valued […]

    Belize City cops investigating stolen motorcycle
    Belize City cops are busy investigating the theft of a motorcycle on Pelican Street Extension. The owner of the motorcycle, Kendrick Flores, yesterday told cops that between the hours of 4.00 p.m. on Sunday and 5.30 a.m. on Monday the theft occurred. His 2015 white and red Sky go Brand […]

    Tow Tow robber only jacked $200
    On Sunday we told you about the midday robbery of Tow Tow Grocery shop on Mahogany Street in Belize City. We reported that the establishment was robbed by one armed person with a rag over his face. Well today police issued a report revealing that […]

    Police say Teakettle man was murdered
    The badly decomposed body of a man was found last night near the old Warrie Head bridge near Teakettle Village, Cayo. Police has confirmed the body to be that of 24 year old Mark Mendez who was reported missing last week. The post mortem examination […]

    More allegations against Johnny Valencia?
    Johnny Valencia, Monsignor Romero Primary School Principal who is already charged with sexual assault of a minor, is facing yet another accusation of the same. Belmopan police say that they are investigating a report where another child came forward claiming that Valencia sexually assaulted her, […]

    Belize City burglars get 12,355.00 in assets and gun
    A burglary in Belama Phase 3 of Belize City yielded $12,355.00 in valuables. Nidia Dominquez of Rhamdas Street reported that sometime between the hours of 6:25 a.m. and 2:15 p.m. on Monday her four-bedroom bungalow house was broken into. According to police accounts, burglars made off with […]

    Western protestors will be charged says police
    Belmopan police are preparing to charge those involved in a protest in Teakettle village where villagers burned tires as a sign of discontent with the police. Senior Superintendent of Police Howell Gillett, explained that police intend to lay charges on as many as 20 […]

    Bullet Tree Village still without running water after the freak storm
    The Department of Rural Development (DRD) informs residents of Bullet Tree Village that there will be no access to potable water throughout the course of the day. According to a DRD press release, the pump house is currently experiencing high voltage, and as a […]

    Belize and Cuba establish closer ties
    Belize and Cuba will establish closer ties in the months ahead, Minister of State for Economic Development, Oil, Investment and Trade Tracy Taegar-Panton assured Cuban Ambassador Lissette Perez during a meeting on Monday. Taegar-Panton confirmed that Belize will take part in the upcoming […]

    Elvin Penner to be charged for manslaughter today
    At yesterday’s press briefing, Deputy Officer Commanding San Ignacio Police, Assistant Superintendent Daniel Iche told the media that former minister of government, Elvin Penner will be charged for manslaughter today. According to Iche, Penner was at fault since he was overtaking. The fatal traffic […]

    Body of Markie Mendez found by hunters in Teakettle Village
    Confirmed reports are that the body of Markie Mendez was found last night in Teakettle Village. The body was found by a group of men who were hunting near the old Warrie Head Bridge in Teakettle. Mendez had been missing since last week. On […]

    Blogs

    Turtle Inn, A Coppola Resort in Placencia, Belize: More Beautiful than I Ever Imagined
    I’ll let my pictures (and the gorgeous ones from the website) do the talking but MAN is this place as close to perfection as I can imagine. The grounds are lush and beautiful – as if you were wandering a secret garden in Bali. At every turn a statue or flower that begged to be photographed. A beautiful private beach with 3 floating docks for sunning, 2 big pools, burnished hardwood carvings, perfect palapas, stone walls and carvings, gorgeous antiques. Almost a jungle lodge on the beach. In the most perfect way. THE FLOWERS! I had to meet the gardeners…

    Sun, Sand, Sea and Lobster in Placencia
    Placencia Lobsterfest lived up to its expectations. It delivered three days of entertainment by the sea as vendors set up their booths to prepare the tastiest of lobster dishes and promote their services and products. It’s three days that you spend in the popular peninsula of Belize, enjoying the sights and sounds of the celebration. Of course the taste of the delectable spiny lobster is the big draw. Lobsterfest in Placencia is one big beach party that takes place for three days. It’s filled with plenty of lobster to eat, music to whine to, sun to soak, water to wade in and fun to enjoy. People from all over come for food, but end up staying for the entertainment.

    The Most Fun I Ever Had Not Winning
    “The Most Fun I Ever Had Not Winning” turned out to be my vacationing friend John McHenry’s tag line of the night. He was in town speaking on behalf of the board for Holy Cross School graduation and wanted to get together. I had declined his Friday night offer to meet for a drink after dinner as I was enjoying some quality me time and I was also saving myself for Saturday night on the town and the big lobster festival street party. When I mentioned the block party as an alternate plan I was surprised to find out that John did not know about it. By his response I could tell that he thought it was a small local neighborhood thing. He soon found out otherwise when we walked from our meeting place out front of Fido’s to the very packed Central Park area. After several years of attending San Pedro Lobster Fest, it was fun to see the party through the eyes of someone who unexpectedly ended up there. Surprisingly in all the years John has been coming here he has never celebrated the opening of lobster season in Belize.

    July 1, International Reggae Day
    “This year we are celebrating the 50th anniversary of Rocksteady. We have managed to bring media on board in 35 cities in multiple regions for a 24-hour reggae party. Among the new cities coming on board this year is Beijing, China. We are very excited about this as it joins other new partners from Vietnam, Australia, South Africa, Madagascar, Singapore, Sierra Leone, Ibiza, Belize and three cities in Brazil. The total number of participating cities move from 25 last year and three the year before,” Andrea Davis told the Jamaica Observer. While earlier years of IRD were focused more on the building of the product in Jamaica, it is all about spreading the wings of the event. There are a number of events from parties, yoga sessions, and concerts to a panel discussion taking place worldwide to celebrating the day. In Jamaica, the day will be celebrated on local media, as well as an IRD conference at the Jamaica Pegasus hotel in St Andrews.

    International Sourcesizz

    A new parrot taxon from the Yucatán Peninsula, Mexico
    Amazona gomezgarzai could well be in northern Corozal or Sarteneja.... Parrots (Psittaciformes) are a diverse group of birds which need urgent protection. However, many taxa from this order have an unresolved status, which makes their conservation difficult. One species-rich parrot genus is Amazona, which is widely distributed in the New World. Here we describe a new Amazona form, which is endemic to the Yucatán Peninsula. This parrot is clearly separable from other Amazona species in eleven morphometric characters as well as call and behavior.

    Belize Slapped With Worst Rank In Latest Human Trafficking Report
    The U.S. State Department yesterday slapped the worst tier status on the Central American CARICOM nation of Belize as it released its annual Trafficking in Persons report. Belize is the only Caribbean country with a tier 3 status again this year, which means its government does not fully comply with the minimum standards of the Trafficking Victims Protection Act’s (TVPA) and is making no significant efforts to do so. The Trafficking Victims Protection Act (TVPA) of 2000 is arguably the most important anti-trafficking law ever passed. The TVPA and its subsequent reauthorizations, define a human trafficking victim as a person induced to perform labor or a commercial sex act through force, fraud, or coercion.

    Brexit threatens to clip the wings of UK butterfly exporter
    The flapping of a butterfly’s wings can unleash a typhoon halfway around the world, chaos theory says. But what if the typhoon of Brexit ends up crippling butterflies instead? That is the concern of Richard Lamb, general manager of the Stratford Butterfly Farm in Stratford-upon-Avon, which bills itself as “the UK’s largest tropical butterfly paradise”. It has its own zoo-like attractions, which the company says draws about 150,000 visitors a year. It also supplies butterflies for similar parks around the world. Last year, Stratford sold £1.2m worth of pupae, around 750,000, about half in the EU. “We’re a good business,” Mr Lamb says. Stratford opened 32 years ago and Mr Lamb, a conservationist and noted lepidopterist (a butterfly and moth expert), has worked there ever since. A large proportion of the pupae Stratford sells, including for export, are sourced from farms across the tropics, including one the company owns in Belize. The business specialises in the best-selling Blue Morpho, a large and colourful butterfly with an unusually long adult lifespan of about six weeks.

    In Search of the Maya World: From Central America to Philadelphia
    Last month I set out on a trip through Central America with a small group of Road Scholars in search of the mysterious Maya World. Little did I know at the time that there are so many connections between Maya culture and Philadelphia. The first archeological site on the itinerary was Lamanai (“Submerged Crocodile” in Mayan language), situated in a tropical forest on the banks of the New River Lagoon in Belize. The Mayas used waterways to trade with each other and we accessed the site by motor boat. Lamanai was a large, ceremonial center, built in layers by succeeding generations in the Pre-Classic Period (2,500 BC – 250AD). The Jaguar Temple and the Masks Temple with its impressive sculptures are some of the highlights of this site. The steep climb to the top of the High Temple, one of the largest of this period, was well-worth it for the panoramic view of the jungle and the lagoon. Unlike the Egyptians, the Mayas did not necessarily bury their rulers in these pyramids. Maya temples were built mainly to honor their rulers and their gods; special offerings of jade and shell ornaments were recovered at this site. Cahal Pech, another ceremonial center in Belize, is known for being one of the earliest in the region. Its 34 structures consist of two small ball courts, palaces and temples with stelae (stone monuments) and altars.

    Patent Application for Snapchat Scuba Mask
    Cruise ship company Royal Caribbean has submitted a patent application for a dive mask that will allow Snapchat spectacles to used underwater. The 'Seaseeker' mask allows a pair of Snapchat spectacles to be slotted in and out of an underwater housing, allowing the wearer to record their underwater experience for up to 30 minutes at a maximum depth of 46m (150ft). ‘The Seaseeker will enable all adventure-seekers to get a front-row seat to the thrilling adventures found underwater in a way that has never been possible before,’ said Jim Berra, Royal Caribbean's SMO and SVP of marketing. ‘Snapchat continues to be a favourite channel for curious travellers and is the ideal platform for this first-of-its-kind undersea exploration.’

    Videos

  • Royal Belize, 1.5min. Drone view

  • Belize (GoPro Montage), 2min.

  • Galen University Youth Rise, 38min.

  • Team Belize Fights Hard in Poker Run, 7min.

  • Ernestine Carballo New Video "Stay on Fleek.”, 23min.

  • Caribbean Development Bank, 36min.

  • 2017 Belize Howler Monkeys, 36sec. We went into the Jungle along the Monkey River in Belize and found some howler monkeys.

  • Chester Williams Leaves Eastern Division South, 29min.

  • Govenrment Goes Digital - CITO Microsoft MOU, 25min.

  • Film & Media Arts Unit - Audio Workshop - Movie Release, 27min.

  • Bruk It Down Jenny, 36min.

  • Belize at World Poker Games Update, 17min.

  • Growing The Future Summer Camp Project, 14min.

  • Stress Dolls, 20min.

  • Football Federation of Belize, 21min.

  • THE AMAZING THINGS YOGA CAN DO FOR YOU!, 26min.

  • The ‘seaseeker’ dive mask transforms snapchat spectacles into underwater goggles, 1min.

  • When "BELIZE GYAL" come out!, 2.5min. BNDC Performing earlier in Astana, Kazakhstan

  • San Pedro Belize 2017, 2min. This video does not even do justice to how beautiful Belize was! Definitely the trip of a lifetime and I met some of the most amazing people while I was there!

  • A game in Belize, 1.5min. Chicken Drop, a game in Belize.

  • Dreaming of Belize 1080p, 14.5min. The clear water of Belize, see the sharks up close!

  • BELIZE 2017, 2min. BELIZE, SAN PEDRO, CAYE CAULKER

  • Belize ICP Aftermovie, 5min. Big shout out to Monkey Bay Wildlife Sanctuary - Belize Study Abroad for hosting us.

  • The animals of the Belize Zoo, 18min. We went on the directors tour at the Belize Zoo and we created this video of the animals we saw.

  • Wildside Adventures Travel Service - Belize River Lodge, 28min. Fishing for Tarpon, Bonefish, Snook, Permit and many more species

  • Drunk Cop in Belize, 40sec. It very sad to see that man so .lot of people never stop and think is he ok do him.have problem sometime we. As human mek the thing that happen to ous in our daily life get the best of ous being a police is hard sometime because tomorrow never promise to them

  • Placencia Lobster Festival - Fishing Tournament weigh in., 7min.

  • Placencia Lobster Festival 2017!, 11min.

  • Placencia Lobster Festival 2017! (Pt.2), 9min.

  • Placencia Lobster Festival 2017! - Day 3, 2min.

  • Placencia Lobster Festival! Pt.4, 12min.

  • Police Check Point Talk Show, 39min.

    June 27, 2017


    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, and other specials


    The San Pedro Sun

    Finn + Martini wins big at San Pedro Lobster Festival
    The 2017 Lobster Season officially opened on Thursday, June 15th, bringing back the Caribbean Spiny crustacean to the restaurants’ menus on the island. The opening of the season marks the occasion for the anticipated Annual Lobster Fest which sees a week-long Lobster Crawl. Persons participating in the crawl this year were encouraged to get their Lobster Fest Passport stamped at the participating establishments, for a chance to win the ultimate vacation package for two to the 2018 Lobster Fest. The festival will culminate on Saturday, June 24th with a grand block party at the Central Park. Starting at 6PM, the party will feature booths providing a variety of lobster dishes and refreshing cocktails throughout the evening. There will also be music entertainment from the Pannerifix Steel Band, among other local artists. During this last day of the festival, the winner of the ultimate vacation package for two persons for next year’s festival would then be announced.

    San Pedro Town Library to host several summer camps
    As the 2016-2017 school year draws to an end, the San Pedro Town Library (SPTL) is hosting several free educational and recreational summer camps. With the first camp quickly approaching, SPTL Library Assistant Marlene Coral is encouraging all parents to register their child/children. The first camp will take place on Monday, July 3rd through Friday, July 7th, from 1PM to 3:30PM. Every year, the SPTL, in conjunction with the Belize National Library Services and Information System (BNLSIS), hosts their annual summer camp under a theme relevant to Belize. This year, BNLSIS has selected ‘endangered birds’ as the main theme, and campers will learn about the yellow-headed amazon parrot, ocellated turkey, and jabiru stork. The camp will be a combination of lectures and fun activities, such as arts and crafts, coloring, and word games. On Tuesday, July 4th, The Belize Audubon Society will be leading a special presentation, which will include a bird walk through the library and a reading of the story, ‘Sunny—The Yellow-headed Parrot”.

    Call for Nominations – Ocean Hero 2017
    Being an ocean hero can mean many things but mostly, it means deciding that you are ready to take action to help to protect our marine environment for people and creatures of today and for future generations. Over the past six years, Oceana in Belize has been proud to recognize several Belizeans for their contributions to the sustainable management and protection of our marine environment. Last year on Saturday, October 1st, at a ceremony held at the Mexican Institute of Belize, Oceana recognized two Belizeans as Ocean Heroes 2016 for their selfless commitment to Belize’s marine environment, biologist and zoologist Janet Gibson and founder of ­ Toledo Institute for Development and the Environment (TIDE), Wil Maheia. Oceana is pleased to announce nominations are now open for the 2017 Oceana Ocean Hero Award. This award recognizes and celebrates individuals who go above and beyond to ensure the protection of our oceans.

    Coral Reef Ed-ventures hosts “Finding Dory” movie night
    The Coral Reef experts are already on the island gearing up for the 18th Annual Coral Reef Ed-ventures summer program scheduled for Monday, June 26th. The free, fun educational camp focuses on marine ecology, and is a collaboration between students from Smith College in Massachusetts, USA, and the Hol Chan Marine Reserve. To kick off the fun, members of the program held a movie night on Tuesday, June 21st at the Lion’s Den at 7:30PM. The turnout was satisfactory, with mainly children showing up, eager to watch the funny Blue Tang fish in action. As the kids sat down getting comfy to start watching the movie, moderators served popcorn and juice.

    Ambergris Today

    Belize Signs Agreement With Global Technology Giant Microsoft
    At the last Annual General Meeting of the Belize Chamber of Commerce and Industry (April 27th 2017), Prime Minister of Belize Rt. Hon. Dean Barrow announced GOB’s plan to combat government inefficiency and corruption using digital technology. Microsoft intends to help the Central Information and Technology Office (CITO) develop and deliver on its National Digital Transformation Improvement plan by: consolidating all its existing agreements into one holistic agreement for improved control and better pricing, helping the CITO team towards developing and adopting a cloud strategy and policy, and deploying a solution that will provide a single platform for a more connect, cohesive, collaborative government.

    Finn & Martini And El Jefe Shine At San Pedro Lobsterfest
    After only a week from the opening of the lobster season, restaurants from around the island gathered at Central Park to showcase their best lobster dish and best drink. With no time to waste, and as the crowd got bigger, judges made their way from booth to booth to sample all the decadent lobster servings. Pleasing the judges pallets the most, Finn & Martini along with El Jefe were awarded with Best Lobster dish and Best Drink of the evening.

    Misc Belizean Sources

    mzz

    Dia de San Pedro 2017
    Check out the Calendar of Events for the Dia de San Pedro 2017 festivities, starting this Thursday, June 29! Dia de San Pedro is officially on June 28th, and the San Pedro House of Culture (SPHC), along with The San Pedro Town Council put together a series of activities to celebrate this grand occasion. The annual week-long event honours St. Peter (San Pedro), the Patron Saint of Fishermen of the island, and San Pedranos, along with those who have adopted the island as their home, come together annually to thank their patron for another bountiful year.

    Festival of Hope Belize 2017 Coming to San Pedro in July

    Jingle on the Block, Caye Caulker
    Kindly come out and support our children. June 30, 10am corner of Estrella Street and Avenida Mangle.

    Hey beautiful Caye Caulker Tour Guides
    We have a meeting Wednesday evening at 730pm. At the community center. It's very important to attend, forms will be distributed and we will be going through new regulations. If you'd like to pay your dues before hand please bring your bank receipt. That would be great. The bank account is on our CCTGA page, just scroll down to find it.

    Second annual 5km Run / Walk Seine bight
    Come out and support the Seine Bight Reservoir to Museum Foundation for our second annual 5km run / walk to the future site of the museum in Seine Bight on August 19th! Details are below. If you or a business you know is interested in becoming a sponsor of our event, please message the Foundation here or email Sarita Garcia, the chair, at seinebightreservoirmuseum@gmail.com.

    Brooklyn Brothers Bagel Shop win alcoholic drink category
    Congratulations Linda! Last night, the Brooklyn Brothers Bagel Shop Took 1st place in the nonalcoholic drink category. Everyone loved your Tropical Mermaid punch.

    University of Belize Class of June 2017 - Belmopan
    300 photos....

    Operating theatre at Northern Regional Hospital reopens
    Operating theatre at Northern Regional Hospital re-opened today after two years of ongoing upgrades and repairs. An evident need for the health region!

    Belize Audubon Society Reef Protector Workshop
    Highlights of our last Reef Protector Workshop. Field activities are a big part of our Reef Protector program. At our last meeting, our group had some time in the field learning about beach profiling and practicing for their upcoming Half Moon Caye Natural Monument Trip.

    Shooting Stars Academy End of the Year Showcase 2017
    To all our fans, parents , friends & the community in general..The Shooting Stars Academy invites everyone to its end of year showcase..All are cordially invited..

    Corozal Student represents BELIZE in PUNTA CANA, DOMINICAN REPUBLIC
    BTL wishes Jo-Elisa Clarke a safe journey as she represents Belize at CANTO 33rd Annual Conference & Trade Exhibition. Jo-Elisa captured 1st place in the 2017 Video Competition and won herself an all-expense paid trip for two to Punta Cana, Dominican Republic plus a tablet. As part of her prize, BTL has contributed US $1000. We hope that Jo-Elisa’s experience will be memorable and wish her continued success in the future.

    "CARLOS BUSTILLOS" comedy show at Princess Casino
    It's always a Laugh Out Loud weekend at the PRINCESS CASINO FREEZONE, Corozal this Friday, June 30th and Saturday, July 1st, 2017. Everyone is cordially invited to enjoy the musical comedy show of "CARLOS BUSTILLOS" starting at 10:00 p.m. Come and enjoy!

    3rd Annual Soca Fete 2017
    REMINDER: IT'S THIS FRIDAY COROZAL...Official launch of our Carnival Season. Supporting this event means we will have bigger and better carnival groups & bands and parade. A COROZAL CARNIVAL COMMITTEE EVENT!

    This Day In History
    June 26th, 1820 - First sitting of the Supreme Court of the Colony.

    Channel 7

    Former UDP Politician Penner Kills Man In Traffic Accident
    The Cayo District had another traumatic weekend with the murder of a 21 year old, the worry over a 24 year old who is missing and presumed dead, and a fatal accident which killed a 41 year old. We start with the accident - because the man accused of knocking down and killing 41 year old Kenrick Myvette is one of the most notorious politicians in recent history. It's Elvin Penner and Myvette's family believe that after causing the death of their loved one on Friday night, police gave him special treatment - an injustice added to their loss and grief. Daniel Ortiz found out more today:..

    21 Year Old Killed In Cayo
    And while that happened just outside of Santa Elena on Friday night, just after midnight on Saturday a 21 year old was killed. Akeem Guzman was ambushed by a masked man dressed in all black at about 12:50 am on Sunday. He had left home at midnight and 1told his mother he was going to visit a friend. He was doing just that, and stooping in front of the friend's fence when a gunman appeared from behind and let off a single, fatal shot. His mother accepts that her son was no angel, but she says they didn't need to shoot him in his back. Here's the story:

    Missing Man In Teakettle Feared Dead, Angry Residents Start Tyre Fires On Road
    There was uproar in Teakettle village this weekend - residents set tires ablaze on the highway on Saturday afternoon. It was all in an attempt to bring everyone's attention, especially the police, to the missing 24 year old resident Marky Mendez. He has been missing for 5 days. His family hasn't seen or heard from him since Wednesday night and they have lost all hope of finding him alive. All they want now is to find his body- wherever it was stashed. So far family and residents have been searching the area and have found clues that can help in the investigation. Courtney Weatherburne was in Teakettle today and has more details.

    Police Will Charge For Tyre Fires
    Now although the Mendez family and villagers are going through a hard time right now, police say that those responsible for the tire fire will have to answer to charges. Today OC Gillett told us that everyone is entitled to express their discontent with police work but they took it a bit too far. Here is how OC Gillett put it. Sr. Supt. Howell Gillett, OC, Belmopan: "On our arrival we observed some 20 disgruntled people and we were able to remove the tyres and then removed the debris from the area and we were able to quell whatever."

    Castro Bros. Associate Caught Moving Major Marijuana Weight
    An associate of the Castro brothers is in big trouble with police tonight. Yesterday, just before 11 in the morning, the Mobile Interdiction Team was patrolling the West Landivar area when they received a radio transmission notifying them of a suspicious vehicle in the area. The MIT unit then intercepted a gold Kia Spectra driven by 22 year old Gian Espadas. The officers searched the vehicle and found a large black plastic bag on the floor of the passenger side containing about 12 pounds of marijuana. Espadas was arrested and charged for drug trafficking.

    Indian Businessman Robbed Of Tens Of Thousands In Ranchito
    An Indian businessman was robbed of a huge amount of cash on Friday. It happened at an unlikely place - the Ranchito airstrip in the Corozal District. Last Friday, Avinash Deshmukh, a Corozal Town store manager, drove to Ranchito Village and took the 1:30 flight to San Pedro. After arriving in San Pedro, Deshmukh visited one of his stores where he collected $54,000 worth of wholesale and retail proceeds. Deshmukh then took the 5 o'clock flight back home. After landing in Ranchito, Deshmukh was walking to his vehicle when he noticed another car parked behind his Toyota 4-Runner. As he hopped into the 4-Runner, two men jumped out the vehicle behind him and held him up at gun point. The assailants took his backpack containing the money, and struck him in the back of the head before leaving.

    Cops Got Back Stolen Gun In PG
    Punta Gorda isn't a hotspot for gun seizures, but today after a search on Panama Street in Punta Gorda, police found a pistol along with nine rounds of 9mm bullets. The firearm was reported stolen in November 2016 after a robbery at the Rosia Shop in PG.

    Embarrassment For FFB As Congress Gets No Quorum
    On Friday we told you that the stage was set for a massive boycott of the FFB Congress by a majority of member associations. And that's just what happened on Saturday when the Football Federation rented a big room at the Princess for a very small turnout - too small for a quorum. 7News was there on Saturday, and Sunday - here's the story:... Jules Vasquez reporting: Paramilitary police guarded the stairway at the Princess on Saturday morning. I was told the media was not permitted upstairs and while I did try to plea my case I was told that unless my name was on the list of delegates I could not go up.

    President Kuylen Talks About Rebellious Directors
    So - once again - the FFB - Belize's richest and largest sports Federation - is in a very unsettled state. And to make it worse, three of the Directors have turned against the president. As we showed you last week three members of the management team signed a letter saying Acting President Kuylen could not offer himself for president while being the acting president. Yesterday he discussed the difficulty going forward with that management team:...

    Elderly Man Knocked Down In Roaring Creek
    An elderly man was knocked off his bicycle in Roaring Creek but according to latest reports he survived and is receiving treatment at the hospital. We stumbled on the scene as we were heading to Teakettle. The driver of the truck who knocked down the elderly man told us that he tried his best to avoid hitting the man. We start off with an eyewitness and followed by the interview with the driver of white pickup truck. Here are those comments.

    Valley Of Peace Principal Remains Under Scrutiny
    Police are investigating another complaint against Monsignor Romero Primary School Principal Johnny Valencia. As we told you he has been charged for sexual assault in relation to the 13 year old student's complaint. But another girl has come forward to say she too had a similar experience with Valencia. Police say as soon as they get more information on this other case other charges will be brought against Valencia.

    Making Curricula Credible
    In the last few months the Ministry of Education has been making moves to integrate online learning into secondary school curricula. Last month Minister of Education Patrick Faber hosted representatives from the Ministry of Education in Antigua and Barbuda for a conference on introducing e-learning into our high schools. Today the Ministry has taken another step in that direction by launching the Curriculum Writing and Content Development Project, an undertaking that will see high school teachers from around the country rework course materials to be suitable for online learning. We spoke to Dr. Sheldon Samuels, the Ministry official spearheading the project, about the importance of the move...

    Another Significant Other Stabbed In The South
    At the end of May, we told you about a wife who fatally stabbed her husband. Well, again in the south, but this time in Dangriga, a woman stabbed her husband, but he lived. On Friday bight, Dangriga police responded to a domestic dispute between 24-year-old Lucia Can and her 28 year old common-law-husband Thompson Orlando Guttierez. According to reports, the couple were having an argument when Can became angry and stabbed Guttierez in his back and chest. Police have detained Can, and charges are pending.

    Northern Regional Gets New Surgical Theater
    The Northern Regional Hospital processes hundreds of patients every week, but, for long, it has been without a suitable operating theater. Today, after clamoring for a over a year, the newly refitted theater was opened. And it was an opportunity for a long missing politician to make a super-rare public appearance. Gaspar Vega showed up and gave a speech. The Hospital is in his constituency, so it was only appropriate. Here's what he and the CEO in the Ministry of Health said at today's opening:...

    Belizean Distance Runner Completes Hundred Mile Run
    A Belizean distance runner was the first - that we know of - to run a hundred mile race. According to reports on FACEBOOK, Kim Espat completed the Western States Endurance Run. And he didn't just run it, he finished it! Espat came in 48th overall and 36th among men out of a total of 369 runners, in a time of just under 23 hours.

    In Cayo, The Waters Were Sudden
    Heavy rain in San Ignacio and Sent Elena caused localized flooding in that Western town over the weekend. Area Representative for Cayo North Omar Figueroa explained what the flood was like on Saturday... Hon. Omar Figueroa - Cayo North Area Rep: "Yesterday around midday, we got hit by what can only be described as a freak storm. We had an excessive amount of rain fall in a very short period of time. This produced a lot of water and you know when you have water in hilly terrains, these water will eventually find itself to lower grounds. We had a lot of water going through the streets and going through yards and going through houses in San Ignacio and in Bullet Tree and of course creating a lot of damage. Water became held back in a lot of areas so you had these huge pools of water and people of course had to deal with it."

    Police Show Off In The Streets
    And we close tonight with the event that culminated police week. It was an all-formations police parade through the city - a show of policing prowess and numbers.

    Channel 5

    Elvin Penner to be Charged with Manslaughter for Fatal RTA
    Former Minister Elvin Penner has been in the headlines for immigration illegalities, but on Friday, he was in the driver seat of a vehicle which hit and caused the death [...]

    Akeem Guzman Shot Dead at Friend’s Home
    The murder count continues to go up in the west where a wave of violence has flared up in recent times. There have been five murders so far in two [...]

    A Teakettle Family’s Anguish: is Markie Menzies Dead?
    Also in the west, Belmopan Police have solved the three homicides reported in their jurisdiction so far this year. But they may possibly now have another murder on their hands. [...]

    Frustrated Residents Set Tire Fire, Warned by Police
    Teakettle residents whom we spoke with today still showed traces of fear and frustration on their faces. That boiled over on Saturday, when about twenty disgruntled residents, fed up with [...]

    Football Federation Divided: Mass Boycott Stymies Congress
    The Football Federation of Belize remains deeply divided tonight. Its tenth congress scheduled for the weekend, did not proceed even though executives from CONCACAF were in Belize to provide oversight [...]

    Sergio Chuc Drops CAS Appeal as CONCACAF Withdraws
    Former First Vice President Sergio Chuc has been sidelined from the F.F.B. for over a year.  Since the deadlock between himself and Ruperto Vicente for presidency of the federation in [...]

    Ethics Committee to be Established as F.F.B. Infighting Continues
    All the infighting and turmoil within the F.F.B. has allowed interim president Marlon Kuylen, himself a candidate for presidency, a few more months at the helm of the organization.  But [...]

    Will Government Pay Landowner for Occupation by Bridge?
    The new bridge across the Macal River in San Ignacio is almost complete. It will be temporarily opened to vehicular traffic this week and then closed for final touches before [...]

    G.O.B. Wants Settlement But How Much Can They Pay?
    Neal told us that his client has basically been ignored by Government for several years, even as the Mining Unit forced shutdown of the quarry, costing him his livelihood. While [...]

    Gian Espadas Caught with 12 Pounds of Marijuana
    Twenty-two-year-old Gian Espadas flew under the radar last week when close friends Jafari and Wasani Castro made headlines for a weekend escapade that involved an unlicensed vehicle, as well as [...]

    Businessman from Corozal Gets Robbed at Airstrip
    A store manager from Corozal Town was robbed over the weekend by two men who waylaid him at the Ranchito airstrip up north. Thirty-four-year-old Avinash Deshmukh went on a quick [...]

    Western Communities Hit by Flash Floods
    The rains over the weekend, specifically in the west, cause flashfloods in Bullet Tree and nearby areas in the Cayo District. The waters rose up to eight inches inside homes [...]

    NEMO Restores Water to Bullet Tree
    The waters receded rapidly, but it did cause a problem. Since Saturday, the Bullet Tree Village has been without water at the pipes. The torrential rains over the weekend damaged [...]

    Northern Regional Hospital set to Operate
    The Northern Region Hospital today officially opened its newly renovated operating theatre. For two years, medics were using an interim facility that didn’t allow the team to do the extent [...]

    UB Graduates 530; New President and Mayor Bradley Speak
    On Saturday, five hundred and thirty students graduated from the University of Belize with diplomas at the Bachelor’s, Associate’s and Certificate levels in areas of Education and Arts, Management and [...]

    Writing ACE Curriculum for Online Study
    This morning, stakeholders in the Adult Continuing Education sector began the first day of a workshop geared towards curriculum writers.  The idea is to convert as many as fourteen courses [...]

    Team Belize Fights Hard in Poker Run
    On Friday, we introduced you to the 2017 Team Belize representing poker enthusiasts in the country at the World Series of Poker in Las Vegas. The group of twenty players [...]

    Softball and Mundialito Football Top Sports Monday
    Good evening, I’m James Adderley and this is Sports Monday.   [Highlights of the weekend sporting activities…]

    CTV3

    CZL Businessman Robbed Of More than $50,000
    There was a brazen robbery of a Corozal Town businessman in Ranchito Village in the Corozal District last Friday June 23rd afternoon. Avinash Deshmukh, an Indian store owner, was robbed of a large amount of money at gunpoint, just after he disembarked a plane at the Corozal airstrip. Deshmukh was carrying a back pack with $54,000 which were proceeds from his business in San Pedro Town. He told authorities that as he opened the door to his vehicle, a silver in colour 4-runner that had been left parked at the airstrip, he was held up by two male persons, one who was armed with a handgun. The men came out of a grey 4-Door car that was parked behind his vehicle. The armed assailant pistol whipped Deshmukh, forcing him to hand over the bag with cash.

    Guinea Grass Resident Accused of Dropping Drugs Inside Police Mobile
    A woman from the Village of Guinea Grass is tonight facing the long arms of the law after she allegedly dropped five grams of crack cocaine in the police mobile. Orange Walk cops were on mobile patrol on Friday June 23rd when they stopped and searched a male person traveling on a motorcycle at around 12:20pm. Traveling along with the individual was 21 year old Nuri Mairani Lopez who while being escorted to the station was seen dropping an object on the floor of the police vehicle. The item was retrieved and turned out to be a transparent plastic bag containing 5 grams of Crack Cocaine. Mairani was detained for drug trafficking.

    LOVE FM

    Flash Floods Inundate Bullet Tree Roads
    Over the weekend, residents of San Ignacio and Bullet Tree Village were greatly affected by flooding. The National Emergency Management Organization NEMO responded swiftly and Minister Edmund Castro and Cayo North Area Representative Omar Figueroa visited the affected families. OMAR FIGUEROA “And so we had a lot of water going through streets and yards and […]

    Football Federation Election Stalled
    The Football Federation of Belize’s tenth Congress was not held over the weekend because it did not have the quorum needed. At least four District Associations and the Premier League had written to the FFB informing that they would not attend. Without them, the FFB did not meet the quorum needed to carry through with […]

    Tensions High within the FFB
    The tensions within the FFB this time around stem from the decision to deny Sergio Chuc from running for the federation’s presidency amidst allegations of bribery, corruption and conflict of interest. Chuc has appealed that decision at the Court of Arbitration for Sports and asked the associations to boycott the meeting. Marco Leal, Director of […]

    Love FM’s Richard Merrill Passes Away at 76
    American national, Richard Merrill came to Belize from Mississippi, USA, in the early 1990s and immediately cemented himself in the media and broadcasting industry particularly with Love FM. Merrill, passed away over the weekend at the age of seventy six in Corozal Town where he had relocated following his retirement. Merrill had been an integral […]

    Teakettle Villagers Demand Deeper Investigation Into Missing Man
    Residents of Teakettle Village are still searching for 24 year old Markey Mendez who went missing since Wednesday of last week. They had staged a protest over the weekend in an effort to demand more from the police. We start the story however with when Mendez disappeared. The young man’s mother, Verna Mendez told Love […]

    Gian Espadas Nabbed with 5,450 Grams of Marijuana
    22-year-old Gian Espadas is back in the news. Espadas who was prominently featured in the news a week ago as one of the men who was along with the Castro brothers while they were on their escapades, was today charged for drug trafficking. Police say this morning, members of the Mobile Interdiction Unit were conducting […]

    Short Supply of Medication Soon to be Resolved
    With social media being the platform that many persons use to lodge their complaints and dissatisfaction on certain matters, we do manage to sift through the issues of national concern and follow up on them with an aim to bring clarity to the situations. One such concern that recently came up is the shortage of […]

    Northern Regional Gets Refurbished Operating Theatre
    An operating theatre was officially opened this morning at the Northern Regional Hospital in Orange Walk Town. It is a facility that was very much needed considering the high volume of cases in that jurisdiction. Dr Marvin Manzanero, Director of Health Services told Love News that it was done via government funding. DR MARVIN MANZANERO […]

    Is Jose Luis Espat Uc Practicing Medicine Illegally?
    For some time now we have been observing comments made on social media by aspiring politician, Jose Luis Espat Uc regarding his profession. On one known occasion, he had noted on television that he is a neurosurgeon and that he had resigned from the Karl Heusner Memorial Hospital. Love News got an opportunity today to […]

    UNIBAM Lashes Back at Evangelical Churches
    Last Friday we told you of the disgust expressed by the National Evangelical Association of Belize (NEAB) over the hoisting of the LGBTI flag on the US Embassy’s compound. The association which represents more than two hundred and fifty churches in the country noted in their release, quote, “These rogue views continue to be pushed […]

    The Reporter

    Penner served with NIP following fatal accident
    Elvin Penner, former minister of Government, was served with a Notice of Intended Prosecution (NIP), by San Ignacio Police after he knocked down a Unitedville resident, who later died from the injuries he sustained. The accident occurred at around 6:56 p.m., on Friday on the George Price highway in front of Running W Brand Meats. The victim is 41-year-old Kenrick Anthony Myvette. According to police, Penner claims that he was driving his 2000 Ford Excursion from Belmopan to San Ignacio and upon trying to overtake a vehicle, a motorcycle coming from the opposite direction suddenly veered in front of him.

    Media and NICH hold workshop
    Media personnel gathered at the Government House in Belize City on Friday for a one-day workshop and open dialogue with the National Institute of Culture and History(NICH), to construct a better working relationship between the two entities. The event was a joint collaborative effort between NICH, the Institute for Social and Cultural Research (ISCR), and the Institute of Archaeology (IA). The purpose of the workshop was to discuss the media’s role in heritage preservation and promotion in Belize by releasing the necessary information to the public at large.

    Woman stabs man during domestic dispute
    A woman from Dangriga town is detained pending charges of ‘attempted murder’ for stabbing her common-law husband multiple times on Friday. Police sources have confirmed that 28-year-old Thomas Orlando Gutierrez was stabbed to his left lower back and left upper chest by his common-law wife, 24-year-old Lucia Can on Friday.

    Breaking Belize NewsPJ

    Police bust Castro associate with 12 pounds of weed
    Police confirmed today that Gian Espadas, 22, was busted in the West Landivar area today with 12 pounds of marijuana. Espadas, who was also involved in the contraband bust along with Minister Edmond Castro’s sons not even two weeks ago, was arrested and charged […]

    Forbes: Highest paid celebs make more than Belize, Liberia and Gambia combined
    Forbes Magazine, the American business and finance focused publication, in its latest list of the world’s highest paid celebrities estimated that the top 100 celebrities on the list raked in more than the combined GDP of Belize, Liberia and Gambia. According to Forbes, the […]

    Ocean experts test new cruise-ship goggles in Belize
    Royal Caribbean, which brings cruise-ships to Belize weekly, has partnered with Snapchat to provide cruise passengers with waterproof cameras that will allow them the opportunity to capture stunning underwater images while on vacation. Royal Caribbean debuted the new scuba-mask with built in Snapchat Spectacles this week […]

    Gun stolen at Bacab
    On Saturday, June 24 at around 6:23 a.m., James Wolverson, 36, manager at Bacab Eco Park visited the Ladyville police precinct and reported that the day before around 3:50 p.m. on Friday, he was at work when he decided to use the restroom and […]

    Three arrested for illegal weapon in Teakettle
    According to police reports, last Friday at about 3:10 p.m., police conducted a search at the residence of George Alexander Lopez, 60, in Teakettle village, Cayo for illegal firearms and ammunition. A small wooden house with zinc roof measuring about 15×15 in size was […]

    NEMO Minister assesses situation in San Ignacio after flash flood
    By BBN Staff : Yesterday, Sunday June 25, Minister of National Emergency Management Edmond Castro was in San Ignacio where he teamed up with Cayo North Area Representative, Omar Figueroa and San Ignacio-Santa Elena Mayor, Earl Trapp, to assess the impact of a flash flood which affected […]

    $4,000 worth of goods stolen from D-Max in Belize City
    On Saturday, June 24, around 1:05 a.m., police visited an area on Marine Parade, Belize City near the SCA Auditorium where Luis Ochoa, 36, of Ladyville reported that sometime between 8:30 p.m. on Friday and 12:30 a.m. on Saturday, his grey Isuzu Dmax was […]

    Indian businessman robbed of $54,000 in Corozal
    Avinash Deshmukh, 34, an Indian store manager of Corozal town reported that last Friday he flew from Ranchito Village to San Pedro Town on the 1:30 p.m. flight, leaving his silver 4-Runner secured in the parking lot. The flight arrived in San Pedro around […]

    PG police recover gun stolen in 2016 robbery
    Punta Gorda police have recovered a stolen gun from their town. Over the weekend, a police search led to the discovery of a .9mm pistol on Pampana Street. No one was in the area and the gun was labelled as ‘found property’. The gun […]

    Man knocked down in Roaring Creek
    An elderly man was knocked down a short time ago in Roaring Creek, Cayo, by a pick up truck. The man remains on the ground. His condition has not yet been ascertained. Police are currently on the scene. We will be updating this story […]

    Teakettle villager missing; villagers irate
    On Saturday afternoon, villagers from Teakettle temporarily blocked the George Price Highway in that village. According to reports, a villager has been missing for six days and the community believes the police are not making it a priority to locate the missing man. Officer […]

    No charges against Penner yet
    Disgraced Minister of State, Elvin Penner, is scheduled for arraignment this morning in the San Ignacio magistrate court following a fatal road traffic accident on Friday night. Penner, however, has not yet been detained and his charge sheet has not been prepared, according to […]

    Sunny skies ahead
    The 24-hour forecast is for mostly mostly sunny skies with cloudy spells expected today and cloudy at times tonight. A slight increase in moisture is expected over the next 24 hours as a weak tropical wave approaches the area. Showers or thunderstorms will be […]

    Belize~ Tribute to Richard Merrill
    By Richard Harrison: Richard Merrill was Belize’s very own “Harry Carey” of everything Belizean on radio….having been for many years like the morning coffee of sporting, environmental and cultural activities throughout Belize…a cheer leader….a picker-uper. Goooooood morning Belize!! he would shout early in the morning, as if […]

    Blogs

    A visit to Spanish Lookout, Cayo
    Spanish Lookout is a settlement in the Cayo District of Belize in Central America. According to the 2010 census, Spanish Lookout has a population of 2,253 people in 482 households. Spanish Lookout is a community of Mennonites in Belize. The Mennonite community in Spanish Lookout is quite modern: they use cars and other modern conveniences and the overall impression of the settlement is rather like rural North America than Central America or the Caribbean. The citizens of this community speak Plautdietsch as their mothertongue. Most also speak English and Spanish. It is largely an agricultural community with some light industry, furniture making, prefabricated wood houses and the only oil field in production in Belize.

    International Sourcesizz

    Belize: Remembering Mr. Peters’ Boom and Chime Band
    Not too long ago there were “boom and chime” bands all over Belize, a speck on the Central American map just below Mexico. If you were lucky enough to get down there before 2010 you likely heard the country’s top boom band, led by the iconic accordionist/singer Wilfred Peters, batting out peppy, booty-swinging tunes at parades, festivals, parties and miscellaneous jump-ups. You’ll still hear budding boom and chimers here and there, but seven years ago the last of the genre’s old-time heavy hitters bit the dust when Peters slipped away at 79 to that big dancehall in the sky. Peters’ chief sideman was a drummer who beat one side of his drum with a mallet to make a booming sound. The other side had a metal rim, which the drummer hit with a hollow metal stick to make a chiming sound. Hence, “boom and chime.” Their songs featured the country’s homegrown and still popular mish-mash of African, Latin and Caribbean music called “brukdown” (slang for “broken down calypso”). It goes back centuries to the days when Belize – formerly British Honduras – was home to escaped slaves, out-of-work pirates (during hard times on the Spanish Main), Black Caribe Indians kicked off the Grenadines, Maya refugees from the Caste War in Mexico, Garifuna farmers evicted from an offshore island, people whose faces were on “Wanted” posters in a half-dozen languages and others who came to timber camps in the country’s steaming hot jungles to chop down forests of precious mahogany trees.

    ‘Above and Beyond’ the Horizon
    During his opening speech at the ribbon cutting ceremony for the new expansion at Western Regional Hospital in Belmopan, Belize on June 17, 2017, Ministry of Health Chief of Staff, Dr. Rene Godoy, affectionately renamed the mission responsible for the construction project to ‘Above and Beyond’ the Horizon. Beyond the Horizon is an annual collaborative training exercise between U.S. Army South and partner nations in Central and South America. This year’s exercise took place in Belize where one of the scheduled engineering missions was to provide an extension to Western Regional Hospital’s emergency room and build a new housing for an on-site incinerator. However, as it became clear during the ribbon cutting ceremony, the assigned crew managed to accomplish far more than originally planned.

    Training and Inspiration are Reciprocal during Beyond the Horizon
    Reciprocal was the word of the day at the St. Matthew’s Government School ribbon cutting ceremony June 12, 2017 in St. Matthew’s, Belize. Reciprocal training between military members from the U.S. and Belize, and reciprocal inspiration between the task force members who worked on the school, and the students who will occupy it. The ribbon cutting ceremony marked the conclusion of a three-month construction project completed by Beyond the Horizon 2017, a collaborative exercise between U.S. Army South, the Government of Belize and Central American partner nations working with local and international NGOs to provide humanitarian services throughout Belize.

    U.K. Unveils Memorial for African, Caribbean Soldiers Who Served During World Wars
    he U.K. recently unveiled a monument in remembrance of the thousands of African and Caribbean soldiers who fought and died in the service of the kingdom during the First and Second World Wars. The monument, formed of two 6-feet (1.8m) long obelisks, is sculpted from Scottish whinstone and weighs just under 5 tons, according to the BBC. Described as the first of its kind in the U.K., the monument carries the names of the African and Caribbean regiments in both wars. Speaking at the unveiling ceremony, Mayor of London Sadiq Khan said, “Britain owes an enormous debt to the African and Caribbean service men and women who fought alongside their British-based peers during the First and Second World Wars.

    Belize to Increase Links with Cuba
    Belize will increase its links with Cuba, assured Belizean State Minister for Economic Development, Oil, Investments and Trade Tracy Taegar-Panton during her meeting Monday with Cuban Ambassador Lissette Perez. Taegar-Panton confirmed that Belize will take part in the upcoming 35th edition of the International Havana Fair between October 30 and November 3. In May, Belizean First Prime Vice Minister Patrick Faber visited Havana, and had a meeting with Cuban Vice President Salvador Valdes and Cuban Foreign Trade and Investment Minister Rodrigo Malmierca.

    Videos

  • National Digital Transformation Goals, 5.5min. On Thursday, June 22nd, Prime Minister Rt. Hon. Dean Barrow and the General Manager for Microsoft Services, Latin America, Mr. Angelo Chirico, signed a memorandum of understanding to meet the government’s National Digital Transformation Goals. In addition to addressing issues of corruption and inefficiency, the digital transformation will reach and make more accessible services to the diaspora.

  • Belize - summer 2017, 3.5min. lamanai - san ignacio - belize city - ambergris - caye caulker.

  • RCL passes up NCL Dawn leaving Belize 11/16 Garden Villa Suite, 3.5min.

  • COROZAL RESIDENTS MARCH FOR PEACE, 4min.

  • MUNDIALITO 2017 KICKS OFF, 4.5min.

  • THE NRH INAGURATES NEW OPERATING SUITE, 7.5min.

  • University of Belize June Commencement Exercises, 33min. The University of Belize honoured 530 Graduates during its June Commencement Exercises held on Saturday, 24th June, 2017, and Sunday, 25th June, 2017 at the City of Belmopan and Punta Gorda Town respectively. The new graduates received diplomas at the Bachelor’s, Associate’s, and Certificate levels from the Faculties of: Education and Arts–(190); Management and Social Sciences–(151); Science and Technology–(117); and Nursing, Allied Health, and Social Work–(72). Of the total number of graduates 326 (61.5%) are females and 204 (38.5 %) are males. Prof. Emeritus Clement Sankat delivered his first address as President of UB.

  • Keynote Address by Mayor Darrell Bradley, 20min. Mayor of Belize City, Darrell Bradley, delivered the Keynote Address at the graduation ceremony in Belmopan.

  • President's Remarks by Professor Emeritus Clement Sankat, 32min. Professor Emeritus Clement Sankat delivers his remarks at his first graduation as President of the National University.

  • Belize September 2009, 24min. Scuba diving

  • UNICEF Belize, 28min.

  • Caye Caulker to Belize City International / Maya Island Air Cessna 208, 16min. Maya Island Air flight from Caye Caulker CUK to Belize City Philip S. W. Goldson International Airport BZE with a Cessna 208 Caravan.

  • INSANE SNORKLING IN BELIZE, 8min. Amazing day today! Keep along with my journey in Belize!

    June 26, 2017


    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, and other specials


    The San Pedro Sun

    SHOOTING INCIDENT IN SAN PEDRO
    Police are investigating a shooting that occurred early this morning in the Boca Del Río area of San Pedro Town. According to the official police report, the victim has been identified as 33-year-old Andrew Harris, a resident of the same location. Harris, who is originally from the Corozal District, was reportedly walking home with some friends around 5AM when he was apparently shot twice to his left upper leg. He is in a stable condition and police continue investigating.

    Wolfe’s Woofer: Longevity
    “Hey, Mr. Dennis.” It was Mario, my sometimes yard man coming from the water taxi with a suitcase. He came up on the deck and took a seat at my table. “Where were you last week? I asked, after ordering a beer for him. “I tried to reach you all week to come over and paint the porch.” “I had to go home to Orange Walk to my Grandpa’s funeral.” “I’m sorry for your loss,” I said. “That’s sad.” “Not really. Grandpa was already ninety-eight years old and he had a good life.” “That’s the way it was with my Grandad,” I said. “He lived to be ninety-three. He left behind three children and a whole lot of grandchildren and great-grandchildren.”

    Letter to the Editor: Bad Cops
    Dear Editor, I’d like to commend two sets of individuals that acted in the best interests of our community the other day. The incident that gave rise to my admiration was the unfortunate occurrence where some bad cops tried to intimidate and extort money from a visitor to our shores. This was a terrible act of dishonesty and put all of us, not only we of the island, but all of Belize in an unfavorable light. It made the world think that we are not a nation of laws or an orderly society. The whole story is far from that conclusion; and why I have taken this time to commend the actions of two sets of people. First I’d like to commend the unfortunate victim in all of this. Thank you for believing in the true nature of San Pedro and believing that those cops were not representative of either the island or the police force. Thank you for standing up and having faith that the people you have met and interacted with during your stay on the island reflected the true nature of the Belizean people, and thank you for the faith that you showed that we would not let this injustice stand in our community.

    Doctor Love: Potential New Boyfriend
    Dear Doctor Love, There’s a bar that I’ve been going to for the last year or so. It’s one of the more popular bars and has good music and different events in the evenings and such. The cute bartender and I have been friends for a while and we’ve gone out with friends to other bars and had a fun time. Finally, last week we hooked up, after we ran into each other and ended up having lunch, so it was not at his work. I like him and would like to see where it goes. But should I stop hanging out at the bar? It is a fun place and my friends all go there, so it would be hard not to continue going. Am I still allowed to hang out? /s/ Potential New Boyfriend

    Misc Belizean Sources

    mzz

    Team Belize making progress at the WSOP in Las Vegas
    On Saturday nine players representing Team Belize entered the first start day of the Monster Stack tournament at the 2017 WSOP. A total of 2676 players from across the globe attempted to survive the first 10 hours of poker in this first day. At the end of the night, only 759 players survived including six of Team Belize's players. This means that they will return to play on Monday for Day 2 of the tournament. Today, on the second start day ten players representing Belize are hoping to outlast thousands of other players as well.

    Team Belize in Las Vegas UPDATE 3!
    On Saturday nine players representing Team Belize entered the first start day of the Monster Stack tournament at the 2017 WSOP. A total of 2676 players from across the globe attempted to survive the first 10 hours of poker in this first day. At the end of the night, only 759 players survived including six of Team Belize's players. This means that they will return to play on Monday for Day 2 of the tournament. Today, on the second start day ten players representing Belize are hoping to outlast thousands of other players as well. Here are some photos of today's players (in blue) and those who survived on Saturday. (in red).

    Sarstoon Island Eco Challenge 2017
    We just added an amazing opportunity courtesy of PGTV. Starting today, for each $5.00 you donate, your name will be entered in an opportunity drawing to win a full day tour of Toledo cayes and fishing trip with Wil Maheia for a party of 4. Drawing will be on September 16th, 2017 at the Sarstoon Island Eco Challenge 2017 event. Winner need not be present. Leave us a contact email or phone. Tour can be schedule with 2 weeks notice for a day after September 16 and before Easter Monday 2018. What a great opportunity to support a great cause!!! Please donate.

    Belize Tourism Industry Association San Pedro Chapter
    San Pedro BTIA members, and those interested in learning more about our chapter are invited to our monthly membership meeting on Wednesday, June 28th at El Divino Restaurant, 7PM.

    Belizean Society of Composers Authors Publishers (BSCAP)'s Nationwide Copyright Tour
    UPDATE: Correction made to tentative schedule for future tours.

    Man ambushed on the way to meet a friend
    Ar 12:50am on 25/6/17, 21 year old Akeem Guzman, a resident of San Ignacio had just reached Flamingo Avenue to meet a friend when he was shot in his back. The suspect is described as masked man dressed in full black clothing who was waiting in a nearby bush. As a result of the ambush, he received a single wound and he was taken to San ignacio hospital where he succumbed to his injury at 1:40 a.m.

    National Junior Road Championship Race
    Today our team took part in the National Junior Road Championship Race and came out on top! A big congratulations to Nashen and Gian for making us proud and always representing us well. Nashen Ysaguirre- 1st Place, (2017 National Road Champion). Gian Lino -4th place, (2017 Junior Cross Country Champion). One team, One Family...One Goal."

    Lobsterfest: What a night!
    A big thank you to all of the hard working businesses that put so much love and enthusiasm into their booths last night! Each year we are amazed by the creativity and dedication all of you give to make this event such a success! Thank you!

    Rewriting the history of the mayas of northern Belize
    On June 17th The Northern Belize Maya Association met at Banquitas House of Culture in Orange Walk Belize to discuss the first step in rewriting the history of the mayas of northern Belize as it should be told from the perspective of the people of Belize. As a result the 1st annual Marcus Canul recognition day will be observed on September 2nd 2017 in the town of Orange Walk, commencing at 9:00 a.m. Keep posted for more details to this historic event in Belize"

    Jazz Fest Closing Ceremony
    The 2017 Belize International Jazz Fest had its closing ceremony at the Cayo Welcome Center, and it was the best fest yet!  A wonderful night with a wide range of music from more than 10 groups.  2 stages meant virtually constant music.  Ascenthium rocked the night.  The World Culture Band delighted the crowd. Moreno Son ended up stealing the show.  Within seconds of finishing their sound check, they harmonized, danced, had fun, and jammed in perfect unison with their distinctive Cuban music.  Panerrifix also played, as did Hitalo, who played with Deborah Gilharry at Ka'ana on the Friday before the closing concert.

    Tolacca Wins 2017 Grill Master Challenge
    Congratulations, Tolacca Smoke House! They won the Benny's Grill Master Challenge...again! This is their 2nd year in a row winning! Way to represent Cayo! "For the second year. Tolacca Smoke House brings home the grill master challenge 2017. We would like to thanks our staff, loyal customers and benny's. The title stays in the west another year! Stay classy and eat in. "

    Placencia Lobsterfest, 2017 - delicious lobster dishes everywhere!
    Congratulations to the #Placencia Chapter of the Belize Tourism Industry Association (BTIA) and the Placencia Village Council on a successful LobsterFest!

    The Reporter

    Man murdered in San Ignacio
    A San Ignacio resident was executed by a masked gunman on Flamingo Avenue in that municipality early Sunday morning. The victim, identified as Akeem Guzman, was shot to his back at around 12:50 a.m Police sources have indicated that Guzman had just arrived at a friend’s house to visit when his killer, dressed in full black clothing, emerged from out of the nearby bushes and fired the deadly shot. The victim was transported to the San Ignacio community hospital, where he succumbed to his injury at 1:40 Sunday morning.

    Teakettle villagers stage protest against police
    With the break of dawn on Saturday, black plumes of smoke and fire rose into the sky as tires burnt across the highway in Teakettle village as a sign of protest against police, cutting off traffic. Sources from the village have confirmed that the bonfire was a way of showing displeasure with the police investigation into the disappearance of a young man for four days from the village. The villagers are accusing the police of not assisting with the search for the missing man, despite their call for assistance. While Belmopan police have not issued any report on the young man’s disappearance, they have confirmed that he is missing and that authorities are assisting in the search for him.

    Breaking Belize NewsPJ

    Tow Tow robbed!
    Tow Tow Grocery shopping in the Lake Independence area of Belize City was robbed at gunpoint today. The incident happened just before midday when an armed assailant stormed the premises and demanded cash. No one was hurt and he escaped the area. © […]

    Trump says Mexico is world’s 2nd deadliest country
    Last week, U.S. President, Donald Trump, turned his attention to a country with whom we share our northern border. He tweeted, “Mexico was just ranked the second deadliest country in the world, after only Syria. Drug trade is largely the cause. We will BUILD […]

    Women, men, obsession and murder : “If you are not for me, you will not be for nobody else”
    By Lisa Shoman: I was planning on a lazy Sunday morning indulging in my favorite morning ritual – freshly ground, freshly brewed coffee pressed coffee and cookies and a good book. I certainly was not planning a rant – but then I decided to skim the news […]

    Man shot in San Pedro
    Aside from the shooting murder in San Ignacio, there was another shooting incident in San Pedro today. However, the victim, Andrew Harris, 33, was only shot to the leg and remains hospitalized. Further details have not yet been provided by police but we will provide […]

    Early morning murder in San Ignacio Town
    BBN has received reports about a murder that happened in San Ignacio Town early this morning. According to reports, Akeem Guzman, 21, had just arrived to visit a friend on Flamingo Avenue, San Ignacio Town when he was shot on his back by a […]

    Blogs

    2017 San Pedro Lobsterfest – Great Food and Music & Eating My Body Weight in Lobster
    Last night was the culmination of the 2017 San Pedro Lobster Festival – the zenith of 11 years of festivals that we’ve held on this island to celebrate the opening of lobster season in Belize. And I was asked to be a judge of all the lobster dishes submitted by the 19 different restaurant booths. Along with representatives from the Belize Tourism Board, the San Pedro Town Council and various blogs and publications, fresh-faced and excited to eat and drink. 2 hours later, it was a different story – fresh faced no more – but with all the music and dancing and the fabulous atmosphere, it was a burden worth bearing.

    Corozal Candle Light Walk Peace for Unity 2017
    This once peaceful district has also seen an increase in violent crimes and robberies, some including extortion by police officers. Crime is one of the biggest solution Belize has in our daily life's. Crime is one of the highest rates which is escalating by the number. Locals in Corozal are not that happy about the what has been happening around town and around the country. On Saturday June 24, 2017, locals from Corozal was invited to attend " A call For Peace A call For Unity" candle light walk that was held in Corozal Central Park. This event was organized by the Mayor of Corozal, Town Council's, Vice President of the Rotarct and attend by Rigo Vellos. It commenced at 7pm where everyone had gathered to here about the local's concerns about the towns crime, violence, robbery, and more on how to mange it at a low rate.

    International Sourcesizz

    How to get the cheapest flights according to an expert
    Jack Sheldon is the 29-year-old brain behind Jack’s Flight Club – a newsletter sending its 89,000 subscribers breathtakingly low deals on flights from the UK and Ireland. The Texan native moved to London six years ago and swiftly built a reputation among his friends for always finding the cheapest fares. He decided to share his skills by launching his service – which scans for the best discounts, hidden offers and error fares – last September. He’s not the first to do this, of course – sites like Scott’s Cheap Flights do exactly the same – but Sheldon’s strong point is that his deals are all from the UK and Ireland. “I’ve always loved to travel and found that you could always find a cheap place to stay or find cheaper food but flights were always the place where you spent the most,” he told The Independent. Not any more – his personal best is a £18 return fare from London to Belize on American Airlines (which, he admits, is “exceptionally rare”). http://www.bbc.com/news/uk-40396449

    Prince Harry 'wanted out' of Royal Family
    Prince Harry was once so disillusioned with being part of the Royal Family that he decided he "wanted out". Having considered giving up his title, he finally decided he should remain and "work out a role for myself". Speaking to the Mail on Sunday, the prince - who is fifth in line to the throne - said being in the Army was "the best escape I've ever had". And he said the royals "don't want to be just a bunch of celebrities but instead use our role for good".

    The Belle of Belize | JoyJah
    I recently watched the new Beauty and The Beast movie and what an awesome job the directors did! Belle is my favorite Disney Princess, yes I’m all grown up now but Disney Princesses never get old. I also love Ariel because I secretly may still want to be a mermaid! I mean, what girl didn’t?! Plus the Caribbean crab, Sebastian, would probably make me feel right at home! Any who, back to Belle. I love Belle because of her story and persistence. People pretty much disliked her for no valid reason; simply because she was different. It seems like we have our very own Belle in Belize. Over the past year, Joyjah has caught the attention of many Belizeans, especially young girls. After watching Beauty and the Beast, I thought about Joyjah and her story which she shares on her social media platforms. In her interview with Open Your Eyes, she said, “I always knew that I wanted to be a model… I got bullied a lot because I was different from everybody else, I was the mixed kid, I have freckles and big curly hair.” But today, Joyjah is famous for some of the same things she got bullied for.

    Videos

  • 2017 San Pedro Belize Lobsterfestival, 1/2min. Steel drums and lots and lots and lots of food as the night gets started...

  • , 2min. Once again one of best parts of San Pedro Lobster Fest!

  • Isla Bonita Yacht Club, San Pedro, Belize, 3.5min.

  • Belize, Central America - Things to do, 6min. Short documentary with useful information during your stay in Belize, San Pedro ad Caye Caulker. We are taking you also to the Great Blue Hole, and show you the Chicken Drop Contest.

  • Belize 2017, 3min. Placencia, Belize. The White House, Ranguana Caye, Seahorse Dive Shop, Day Tripper Catamaran Tours.

  • Cave tubing in Belize, 12min.

  • Maya Ruins & Caye Caulker Island, Belize 2017, 2.5min.

  • Travel Tip: Belize, Goff's Caye Island, 3min.

  • Belize in 14 days 2017, 6.5min. NWU biology trip to Belize.

  • Swimming with sharks in Belize, 10min. A Caribbean break, snorkelling among sharks and stingrays in the Belize Barrier Reef, and then a few days in the company of iguanas on the country's largest island, Ambergris Caye.

    June 25, 2017


    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, and other specials


    The San Pedro Sun

    BEL Reports on 2016 Performance to Shareholders at Annual General Meeting
    Belize Electricity Limited (BEL) held its Annual General Meeting (AGM) on Wednesday, June 21, 2017 to report to shareholders on the Company’s performance and achievements for the year 2016 as it pursues its Vision to become A Model of Excellence. BEL outperformed its 2016 financial targets, following four consecutive years of stellar performance, with net earnings of $27.3 million. Shareholders were rewarded for their confidence in the Company with dividends declared of $0.29 per share or $20.3 million. After five consecutive reductions, electricity rates increased marginally. However, the prudent management of energy purchases from Independent Power Producers (IPP) was critical to maintaining low electricity rates. Local renewable sources were utilized for 56% of the electricity provided by BEL in 2016 and the aim is to increase to 80% by 2025. The Company will continue its ongoing negotiations with potential IPPs, in its efforts to maintain low electricity rates.

    San Pedro Police Department celebrate Police Week 2017
    Under the theme, “The Police and the Community working in partnership for a safer Belize”, San Pedro Police Department (SPPD) have been observing Police Week 2017. Along with other police departments across Belize, they have been involved in several community activities. On Sunday, June 18th, SPPD kicked off their Police Week activities at Sagebrush Church with a prayer service. Sagebrush held a special presentation to commemorate Father’s Day, and several police officers enjoyed the church’s sermon and hospitality. On Monday, June 19th, SPPD visited Reef Radio, where they participated in the morning talk-show, and spoke on the importance of Police Week. As part as their clean-up campaign, police officers took to Boca del Rio Park on Tuesday, June 20th, and painted over graffiti. Later that day, Sergeant Jermaine Pook, Corporal Allan Woods, Sergeant Derrick Saldano and Sergeant Macedonio Sanchez visited several island schools to talk about what it takes to join the police force.

    Misc Belizean Sources

    mzz

    Team Belize at the WSOP Monster Stacks in Las Vegas
    It's only two hours into the over ten hour day of poker. All players are still in the game and the remainder of the team are railing the players offering their support. Over 3000 players have started on the first start day the Monster Stack event. Here's a look at our Belizean players in action. Included in the first group are: Vijay Vidani (Corozal), Bob Hotchandani (Belize City), Mick Fabro (Belize City), Drew Miller (San Pedro), Jason Southwell (San Pedro), Anthony Michael (Belize City), Edmond Chee (San Pedro), Geev Abadi (Belmopan), Ryan Lambert (San Pedro).

    Miss YWCA Belize 2017
    "Empowering women in a changing world!" These beautiful contestants in the recent Miss YWCA Belize 2017 pageant have been empowering women all their lives so why not in this contest too! Congratulations to Queen Smith and these role models!

    Lobsterfest in Placencia has commenced. Here'the scbedule

    Pantempers Anniversary Concert
    The Pantempers Steel Orchestra is celebrating its 25th anniversary, and they are kicking off their silver tour at the Cayo Welcome Center next Saturday, July 1st. Happy anniversary!

    The Bi-National Watershed Alliance selects new Chairman for the Belize side
    We congratulate Mr. Ismael Trapp of Esperanza Village for taking over this position, representing ten communities

    The Reporter

    Belize participates in International Food Festival in Taiwan
    The Belize Trade and Investment Development Services (BELTRAIDE), is currently representing Belize in Taipei, Taiwan at the 2017 International Food Show. Belize is attending the event under the theme, “Raising the Bar in Belize, the Success of a Gourmet Chocolatier”. It features the Belize Chocolate Company – a distinguished, domestic brand. The small delegation is led by senior manager of Investment Development of BELTRAIDE, Brian Lin, with support from Diane Haylock, Belize’s Ambassador to Taiwan, and Chris Beaumont of the Belize Chocolate Company.

    Breaking Belize NewsPJ

    Sergio Chuc’s call to boycott football federation elections succeeds
    The fear of the Football Federation of Belize (FFB) came true today as the scheduled Annual Congress was cancelled due to a boycott called by Sergio Chuc. Sergio Chuc, FFB presedential candidate who was barred from running in the election, […]

    Kashief Gallego charged for King Street murder
    Kashief Gallego, 25, was on Friday charged for the murder of Jermaine Franklin. Franklin was gunned down on Wednesday evening as he bought a DVD at Teddy’s DVD rental on King Street in Belize City. Gallego, who resides not too far from the murder […]

    Pakeman back on duty at the Government Press Office
    Dorian Pakeman, the Director of the Government Press Office, is back on duty after being freed of the charge of causing death by careless conduct. A no case submission was ruled by the Magistrate Court in May 2017 due to lack of evidence. In […]

    Belize backs failed US motion on Venezuela at OAS
    Belize is among the members of the Organization of American States, which backed a failed motion by the United States to have a “group of friends” mediate the ongoing political crisis in Venezuela. Belize was one of the six Caribbean Community (CARICOM) nations that […]

    Domestic dispute ends in woman stabbing common law husband
    A domestic dispute on Friday night in Dangriga has left one man with multiple stab wounds. According to police reports, Thompson Orlando Guttierez, 28, “was seen with a stab wound to the left lower back and a stab wound to the left upper chest area.” Police […]

    Boycott cancels FFB annual congress
    The fear of the Football Federation of Belize (FFB) came true today as the scheduled Annual Congress was cancelled due to a boycott. FFB members from the Premier League of Belize along with the member district associations of Orange Walk, Corozal, Belmopan and Cayo, […]

    Road to Bullet Tree impassable
    Today, BBN reported of heavy rains in the Cayo District due to a freak storm. The road to Bullet Tree Village and the San Ignacio Hospital is impassable and the area flooded is before the entrance to Santiago Juan Layout. Fire engine and Police […]

    Villagers block Highway in Teakettle Village
    Reports to BBN is that tires are being burnt on the George Price Highway in Teakettle Village. BBN understands that a man from the village has been missing for 4 days and are accusing the police of not assisting with the search or trying to find […]

    Intense lightening and heavy rainfall in San Ignacio due to freak storm
    A freak storm passing through the Western Cayo District brought with it much rainfall and some heavy gusty winds, particularly in the San Ignacio area. An image downloaded from the weatherbug google app shows that the San Ignacio area and Western Cayo were subjected to very intense lightening. The […]

    Police confirm accident involving former Minister Penner
    Police have confirmed an accident involving former minister Elvin Penner, in which Penner’s truck, a red mini-van and a motorcycle c

    Fatal road accident involving former minister
    Reports to BBN indicate that shortly before 8:00 last night, there was a road traffic accident involving a van and a biker near mile 63 on the George Price Highway, Cayo. The biker was injured and transported to the San Ignacio Hospital.

    Blogs

    The Price is Right! San Pedro Lobsterfest Edition
    That’s right – you read correctly. We had our very own Price is Right here in San Pedro! As part of San Pedro Lobsterfest 2017, The Truck Stop put on their very own version of the Price is Right! It took a lot of creativity and construction, but they pulled it off! For those wanting the opportunity to be called on stage, there was a sign-up sheet. After you signed up you were given an official name tag! It worked just like on TV – the four contestants were shown an item and they had to bid on it….but it was a little different because they used white boards to write their answers on. But just like on the real show, there was a “Barker Beauty”. Brittany Lynn Cory did the most amazing job of presenting all of the fabulous prizes!

    International Sourcesizz

    Garifuna Exchange on the Fight for Land: Honduras and Belize
    A delegation of six Garifunas from Belize are scheduled to travel to the Honduran Caribbean coast on Sunday to learn about Garifuna struggles and victories for land repossession, reparations and other ancestral fights. The event, titled “Honduras: The Fight for Reparations,” is scheduled to last for 12 days and was organized by the Black Fraternal Organization of Honduras, OFRANEH, and Witness for Peace, WFP, an organization promoting solidarity between peoples in the Americas. WFP characterize such cultural exchanges as being an opportunity to “meet with leading experts on policy issues, learn from activists working for peace and spend extended time in communities working for justice.”

    Videos

  • Where does sand come from?, min. Why we're protecting reefs, parrotfish, & all they leave behind

  • 7 amazing trips you should take in your 30s, 2min. TIME lists Belize as one of the 7 amazing trips you should take in your 30s!

  • Team Belize in Las Vegas!, 6min. A group of poker players from Belize are hoping to make it big in this year's WSOP Monster Stack event.

  • Belize 2017 Howard & Chirelle’s Wedding, 2.5min.

  • Kelly and Nurse Shark Belize Wreck Sight 2016, 3.5min.

  • Hummingbird Highway Central Belize 2016, 6min. Trip through Central Belize on the Hummingbird Highway 2016.

  • COLLEGE BREAK SNORKELING IN BELIZE, 3.5min.

    June 24, 2017


    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, and other specials


    The San Pedro Sun

    SPTC says Southern Ambergris Caye dredging is to benefit community projects
    For the past months, dredging for sand has been taking place in southern Ambergris Caye under the approval of The San Pedro Town Council (SPTC). According to Mayor Daniel Guerrero, the sand is not for business purposes, but for the benefit of the community. It will be used in the cemetery, parks, schools, and in a beach reclamation project on the eastern coast of town. However, an apparent oil slick is raising concerns on the environmental impact the dredging has on the Hol Chan Marine Reserve. Guerrero said that it is possible that there could be a small oil slick in the area, but they will look into the matter. He then veered his attention into the purpose of the dredging, and indicated that all schools on the island will benefit with some sand, particularly those that are affected during the rainy season. “The sand will not only make these schools more accessible for students when it rains, but we hope that it also helps in alleviating the situation with the mosquitos,” said Guerrero. “There are people who may criticize the dredging, but we need sand for our cemetery, parks, schools and our beaches.”

    Costa Maya Festival Presents: Miss Mexico Ximena Cardoso Gutiérrez
    The International Costa Maya Festival® committee has announced another yet contestant vying for the title of Reina de La Costa Maya 2017-2018: Miss Mexico Ximena Cardoso Gutiérrez. 24 year-old Gutiérrez stands tall at 5’9”, with green eyes and blonde hair. She has a degree in International Affairs, and enjoys reading, traveling, biking, exercising, modeling, yoga, family time, and shopping.

    Kent Gabourel wins Weekend Warriors’ ACC cycling criterium
    Kent “Bob” Gabourel of the Kulture Megabytes team won the Weekend Warriors A category cycling criterium, held in collaboration with the Anglican Diocese on Albert and Regent Streets of downtown Belize City on Sunday, June 18th. Gabourel’s teammate Alicia Thompson won the Female category race; while Clarence Tesecum won the Weekend Warriors’ B category, and Steve Gill won the Weekend Warriors’ C category.

    Actress Christina Ochoa joins Earth’s Oceans recycling project in Belize
    Earth’s Oceans Foundation, a non-profit organization, is embarking on a project in San Pedro Town, Ambergris Caye to rid the island of plastics, while providing opportunities to the local population. The foundation is teaming up with a group of talented persons in hopes of making a greater impact. One such person is science communicator and actress Christina Ochoa. She has become the organization’s spokesperson and is eager to start bringing awareness to Belize and beyond about the importance of protecting the earth’s oceans and its natural resources. Ochoa indicated that she had been planning a trip to Belize not necessarily for pleasure, but to see how she could be of assistance in any community projects. “Earth’s Oceans helped me to organize my visit to Ambergris Caye so I could see the state of Belize’s Barrier Reef, and at the same see the situation on the island first hand to then raise awareness,” said Ochoa. Ochoa has been involved in similar projects in other parts of the world like Australia at the Great Barrier Reef, the Canary Islands and California, where young people have been tremendously impacted with these environmental projects.

    Ministry of Foreign Affairs launches Diaspora Website
    On Friday, June 16th, the Government Press Office revealed that the Ministry of Foreign Affairs launched its new website, www.diasporaofbelize.org. Not only will this website serve as an information hub for Belizeans living abroad, but it will allow them to get more involved with what’s happening on the mainland. Established and administered by the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, the Belizean Diaspora Program was approved by the Government of Belize in September 2009. As the major focus of this program was for the registration of Belizeans living abroad, a registration drive was also launched in August 2010 to add members to the Belizean Diaspora Medical Brigade, along with the Belizean Diaspora Law Enforcement and Defense Brigade.

    Ambergris Today

    UB To Honour 530 Graduates During Its June Commencement Exercises
    The University of Belize will honour 530 Graduates during its June Commencement Exercises to be held on Saturday, 24th June, 2017, and Sunday, 25th June, 2017 at the City of Belmopan and Punta Gorda Town respectively. The ceremony will commence at 10:00 am at the UB Gymnasium in Belmopan while in Punta Gorda it will commence at 2:00 p.m. at the Toledo Community College Auditorium. The keynote address in Belmopan will be delivered by the Mayor of Belize City, His Worship, Mr. Darrell Bradley. Belizean Educator Dr. Elizabeth Cardenas will be the keynote speaker for the Punta Gorda ceremony.

    Misc Belizean Sources

    mzz

    Minister of Transport Discusses Cooperation with Singapore Delegation
    Minister of Transport Hon. Edmond Castro headed a team from his Ministry which met yesterday, June 22nd in Belmopan with a Singapore delegation led by Mr. Yap Ong Heng, Senior Advisor of the Singapore Ministry of Transport and Special Envoy of that country’s Minister of Infrastructure. The delegation is in Belize to strengthen transport cooperation with Belize and explore cooperation initiatives that could be executed under the recently signed air services agreement, also known as “open skies agreement”. The Signapore delegation also included the First Secretary (Maritime) of the High Commission of Singapore in London, Mr Yao Yikai; and Assistant Director of the Ministry of Transport of Singapore, Mr Justin Kua.

    Seventeen Youths Pass-out of National Youth Cadet Service Corps Program
    On Thursday, 22 June 2017, the National Youth Cadet Service Corps held closing exercises for Intake XVIII at its campus at Mile 21.5 on the Western Highway. Seventeen young men passed-out of the program, having received training in behavior modification, life skills, academics, agriculture, woodwork, spiritual development and basic foot drills. Ten of the “Challengers” were awarded certificates of completion for participating in the entire ten month cycle which began in September 2016, while three were singled out for special recognition. Eighteen year old Selvyn Kelly received the Outstanding Cadet award, thirteen year old Johnny Gamez was Most Improved, while fifteen year old Alton Castillo had the Best Drills.

    NEMO Minister and Corozal Southwest Representative Inspect Flood Mitigation Works
    Minister of National Emergency Management Hon. Edmond Castro was in the village of Libertad yesterday, June 22, 2017, along with Area Representative for Corozal South West Hon. Angel Campos. They were there to inspect flood mitigation works being carried out with equipment from the National Emergency Management Organization (NEMO). The works include the clearing of existing drains and digging of new ones where needed. This is part of a countrywide flood mitigation program that has been going on prior to the start of the new hurricane season. With the hurricane season having now commenced, Hon. Castro says NEMO is trying to cover as many vulnerable areas as possible before they are affected by seasonal flooding.

    Ministry of Natural Resources Strategic Planning Session
    The Ministry of Natural Resources strategic planning Session with The Minister of State, Hon Carla Barnett, Chief Executive Officer, Sharon Ramclam-Young, and heads of Department for the Ministry.

    SAN PEDRO BURGLARY
    On 22.06.17 about 3:35 p.m., 51-year-old Fernando Giacoman, a naturalized Belizean and owner of Coco Cabana Restaurant and Bar located 4 miles North of San Pedro Town reported that several Atlantic Bank cheques amounting to a total value of $7,629.80 went missing from his office. Police are looking for two persons as the investigation continues.

    Barrier Reef Drive closed Fidos- Central Park Fri, Sat
    The public is informed that the section of Barrier Reef Drive from central park to Fido's, will be closed from 6:00pm Friday june 23rd and remain closed all day Saturday the 24th.For the Lobster Fest block party. Reopening Sunday the 25th after clean up is completed. Please be advised that no vehicles will be allowed to enter the closed off section and any parked vehicles will be removed. Thank you and hope everyone has a great time at the Lobster Fest 2017.

    Tribute for Hardrock and to All Belizean Life Lost to Gun and Domestic Violence
    INVITING ALL BELIZEANS AT HOME AND ABROAD TO PARTICIPATE AND PLEDGE YOUR SINCERE SUPPORT TO OUR Tribute for Hardrock and to All Belizean Life Lost to Gun and Domestic Violence. Let us Live in Peace and Stop Rest in Peace! 46TH DAYS OF HEALING is set for July 16th. It will start with a Peace Rally and March from infront of Hardrock's house on the Blvd, through the City Streets and will end up on the ABS Court on Iguana Street for a Candlelight Vigil and Free All Day Event of Positive Music, Sports and Entertainment and more. LOVE AND SHARE THIS POST!

    "AYO DA" TO DANA MARTINEZ & HER DANCE OF LIFE!
    The lost of the legendary Garifuna Belizean dancer and artist Dana Martinez in the Los Angeles Belizean Community has been irreplaceable. Since her death and departure from the Belize artistic scene both at home and abroad, Belizean dance performances has never been the same. Dana brought a new vibe to Belizean dance and performance. She incorporated like no one else did Garifuna dance rhythms into Caribbean art forms that would even make Bob Reneau blushes.

    PORTRAIT OF TERRYL GODOY'S "MAN AT WORK"!
    The 1990s was when Belizean artist Terryl Godoy brought back a kind of eclectic artistic style seen only first by the legendary Belizean artist, Phillip Lewis. A kind of walk about artist who was capturing the colorful scenes of Belize City's busy street life in art form. Terryl visibility was daring and he showed no shyness about it, setting up station wherever a scene comes to view that haunted his artistic mind. Also called, "Man at Work", Godoy was a very young emerging Belizean artist of his time that came up after the departure of Belizean artists extraordinaire George Gabb, Belisle, and Phillip Lewis from the Belizean artistic scene. He appeared to have had no one to consult with as an artist about his work and he explored his craft in solitude confinement across the vibrant Belize City neighborhoods that were already beginning to change.

    NURI AKBAR & THE CALLING!
    As a childhood friend in Belize City Derrick Estrada had more freedom than most of us who grew up in the same neighborhood and in very strict homes like myself in the late 1960s. But remembering him and his shy personality since then makes me realize that boys like him had appeared distant in many ways. Though for me there was always this wonderment why my sheltered background at the time prevented me from knowing him better. It later appeared after we both became teenagers in the late 1970s, and my family's departure from the neighborhood that divided us from connecting, that we were to meet again in more maturity. There was a sense of reluctance still even though we would chat occasionally at the Belize Islamic center on Racecourse Street that had become like a educational pub for some of Belize's most brilliant minds.

    NEMO EOC CONVENES ON SAN PEDRO (AMBERGRIS CAYE) TO REVIEW STATE OF READINESS
    Three weeks into the hurricane season, all branches of the National Emergency ...; and the outgoing Coordinator for that area, Timrose Augustine, who is now stationed in Belize City. There was representation from all 13 committees that make up the OEC. Minister of National Emergency Management Hon Edmond Castro congratulates and thanks all persons involved for their commitment and service to the People of Belize as NEMO continues to lead the way in preserving life and property.

    Donation Drive for Dianny Enriquez
    Some friends of the Enrique family is conducting a donation drive to assist in medical bills for Dianny Enriquez, please make a donation at Costa Maya with Seni Smith or feel free to contact me. Any contribution would greatly be appreciated at this time.

    Graduation at Louisiana Government School
    Would like to big up all graduates from the Louisiana Government School. It was indeed a pleasure and honor to see these young men and women get their primary school certificate. Louisana School and its staff have done well over the many years and it is an honor to always work with them as this school has consistently served our people. I also want to big up the parents for their dedication to their children and the sacrifice and role they play in ensuring their kids get an education. Kudos to all. It was a good ceremony.

    Come see the Maya Ball Game in Succotz on Sunday 25 June, 2017!

    PACT and the University of Belize (UB) partner for Scholarships
    PACT and the University of Belize (UB) partner to provide scholarships for the 2017-2018 Academic Year. PACT will be providing 5 scholarships at the Baccalaureate level for a total value of BZ $50,000.00. Additionally, scholars will have the opportunity to familiarize themselves with the work of PACT and other environmental NGOs through internships within the Protected Areas Management network and other partner organizations. UB will provide Book Grants, mentoring and will supervise the progress of the scholars over the course of the program. In addition to Natural Resource Management, eligible programmes of study have been expanded to include: Information Technology, Biology, Tourism Management and Business Management among others.

    Belize Audubon Society Half Moon Caye and Blue Hole Summer Camp!
    It's that time of the year again!! Remember to reserve your space for this year's Half Moon Caye and Blue Hole Summer Camp! Limited Spaces available (First come First Serve basis) Join us as we explore these World Heritage Sites!! There are 3 dates available 15th, 22nd and 23rd July! Spread the word!

    U.S. Embassy donates three boats and equipment
    Today, the U.S. Embassy handed over maritime assets to include three boats and equipment, valued at approximately US$449,000, to the Belize Police Department. All three vessels were seized by Belizean authorities and now refurbished and equipped to fight criminal activities. The handover ceremony occurred at the Belize Coast Guard Compound in Belize City. Chargé d' Affaires, a.i., Adrienne Galanek and Police Commissioner Allen Whylie, delivered remarks at the handing over ceremony. This project is expected to help increase the Government of Belize’s ability to combat, deter and disrupt narcotics trafficking and illegal activities in the waters of Belize. It places state-of-the-art equipment on rugged boats designed for rapid deployment required to interdict illegal activities in Belize waters. As part of the project, the Police Department has partnered with the Belize Coast Guard to facilitate training for the boat captains and engineers.

    "A Call For Unity Peace Walk" in Corozal
    Saturday night in Corozal will be having its "A Call For Unity Peace Walk". Commencing at 7pm people will gather at Central Park.

    SHJC 2017 Graduation Ceremony
    Congratulations, SHJC graduates! SHJC had their 2017 commencement ceremony. Lots of happy students. FB picture link.

    This Day In History
    1820 June 23rd - King George 1V. proclaimed at Belize. General review of the Militia, the Officers of which had a grand banquet.

    Noche Cultural - Homage to Los Chicleros
    Gearing for Noche Cultural - Homage to Los Chicleros, an industry that bloomed during the Golden Years in Benque Viejo Del Carmen! Make it a date at the Chiclero Park, July 1st, 2017 starting at 5:30 p.m.

    Channel 7

    US Donates Go-Fast Drug Interdiction Vessels To Police
    In the past few weeks, there's been so much controversy about Coast Guard vessels donated by the US Government. That's after the Defense Minister John Saldivar started using them to ferry around his basketball team. The US publicly frowned at that practice, forcing the Prime Minister to declare, "that sort of use, is now absolutely and completely off the table." So that's now the law for the police department which today received its own mini-fleet of high speed vessels from the US. Our 7News team was at the Coast Guard Headquarters in Belize City for the handing-over ceremony, and Daniel Ortiz has that story:

    Top Cop Answers For The Case of Chester and The Castro Boys
    That handing-over session from this morning allowed the media to grill Police Commissioner Allen Whylie about the many police incidents making news in the past 2 weeks. First on the list was the case of the UDP Minister Edmond Castro's sons, and how the police resolved it. The Castro boys were allegedly caught driving without licenses, and they allegedly assaulted the police. That allegedly led to them being beaten by police, and both the Southside Police Commander and their defense attorney assert that they settled the incident with the understanding that the boys would go free without any charge, and that they wouldn't press charges against the officers who allegedly abused them.

    Compol Comments On Rogue, Tourist-Threatening Cops on San Pedro
    The Commissioner also commented on a constable and a special constable from San Pedro who were charged for allegedly extorting an American Tourist, threatening him with a gun to the head, and eventually robbing him. 28-year-old Timothy Braun reported to police that last Thursday evening, he was in downtown San Pedro smoking a cigarette. 3 uniformed police personnel pulled up and accused him of smoking marijuana. He insisted that he wasn't, but the officers handcuffed him, placed him on their golf cart, and drove him to a dark area along the Boca Del Rio. That's where one of the officers allegedly put a gun to his head and told him that if he didn't give them all his money, he would end up in the river. He took them to his rental apartment, and they allegedly stole $500 US.

    When Will Police Finalize Case of Richard Allen Garcia?
    We also pressed the Commissioner for an update on case of Richard Allen Garcia who was shot and killed by Police in Corozal village of Chunox. It happened 14 days ago, when, according to police, he aggressed armed officers with a machete, forcing them to defend themselves by using deadly force to stop him from hurting them. Chunox villagers reject that completely, saying the police had been drinking, and did not use justifiable use of force and harm.

    COMPOL Keeps it Real With His Expectations
    So, with all the negative police publicity, the Department didn't exactly get glowing press during Police Week. It's supposed to be all about highlighting the good work that the 2,300 officers do every day, but these high-profile police controversies focussed on bad or controversial deeds. The Commissioner didn't lament that today; he said he's a realist: Allen Whylie, Commissioner of Police: "In deed we would love to be able to do police week on an annual basis. Through the years it was not properly financed and what we did last year when we decided that we wanted to make serious effort in having police week, we ensured that we put it in the budget. Once it was in the budget then it allowed for the financing, it allowed for the purchasing for the various medals and all the different arrangements that were required."

    When A Cop Is Named As the Mastermind In A Hustle
    And our final story from the Police Commissioner before we go to break is about his Hattieville Commander, Assistant Superintendent Rochelle Chan. Last week, he had to go before the Senate Select Committee to defend his reputation after Alvarine Burgess accused him of being a major player in the visa hustling business. Burgess told the Senators that Chan recruited her to get visas for Chinese Nationals by bribing Minister of Government for recommendation letters which assured that visas would be automatically approved. Chan responded saying that she is lying and that she made up the entire story to ruin his reputation. So, what does his police boss think about a senior officer brought into such a controversy? Here's how the COMPOL put it:

    Alleged King Street Killer Charged
    Today, 25 year old Kashief Gallego, a resident of the Waxhouse area in Belize City, was charged for the murder of Jermaine Franklin. Gallego allegedly shot Franklin inside Teddy's DVD store on King Street on Wednesday at 6:20 and fled. Police pulled security video from surrounding businesses and caught him later that night. Gallego is known to hang out right around the corner from where the murder occurred. He was remanded into custody until August 23.

    Teenaged Lover Who Killed 27 Year Old Mother, Pleads Down
    And while Gallego's murder case is just starting, another one is wrapping up. Today, Freddy Blanco appeared in the Supreme Court before Justice Herbert Lord to change his plea after being in custody for almost 6 years. In September 2011, when he was only 16, Blanco was charged for the murder of Nelsi Chuc, a married, 26 year old mother of a seven year old - with whom he was having an affair.

    NEAB Says Gay Flag At Embassy Is a Case Of Obama Leftovers
    It took them two days to muster the spiritual indignation, but the National Evangelical Association of Belize has finally blasted the US Embassy for raising the rainbow flag. In a statement issued today, NEAB, quote, "expresses its disgust at the US Embassy flying the LGBT flag at the Embassy in Belmopan." From there the statement goes ad-hominem, suggesting that US President Donald Trump would not approve. They say, quote, "These rogue views continue to be pushed by leftover appointees of the Obama Administration at the US Embassy and are not in line with the views and convictions of the Belizean populace. It is our hope that this event will expedite the appointment of a new US Ambassador under the new US President." end quote.

    MIT Finds Drug Vessel Abandoned
    The Mobile Interdiction recovered an abandoned drug vessel yesterday. The un-marked, abandoned vessel was found at the north end of the Placencia Peninsula near Riversdale. The water bottles on board were from Honduras, and it was found with four barrels of fuel and two outboard engines, which is typical of drug trafficking vessels. But it had been abandoned and there was no cargo on board, suggesting that whatever illicit substance was being carried was transferred for transshipment north.

    Five Associations Say They Won't Come To FFB Congress Could Get
    The Football Federation's 10th. Congress is scheduled for tomorrow morning but, tonight, no one's quite sure if the meeting will even go ahead. That's because four of the District Associations and the Premier League have written to the FFB saying they will not participate. Without those five bodies - the Congress will not have the required quorum. The associations are objecting to the FFB decision barring Sergio Chuc and others from offering themselves as President. But, the FFB is doing its best to force these associations back into the fold.

    Lifeguard Training For Greater Water Safety
    During easter-time, and the warm months of April and May, we regularly report on so many unfortunate drownings - especially involving younger persons. The fact is that many go swimming without the ability to truly handle themselves in changing water conditions. And that's where lifeguards come in. They are the safety providers and life-savers in the case of an emergency in the water. True, they might not be a familiar sight in Belize, but the YWCA is hoping to change that with its annual lifeguard training where they encourage young Belizeans to train in this neglected area of public safety. Lifeguards from Gateway YMCA in St. Louis, Missouri, are providing the training this year, and I went to visit with them this afternoon:

    NICH Invites Media To Consult
    The media is always covering workshops, but today we were the ones being hosted at one. It was held by NICH agencies, The Institute for Social and Cultural Research and the Institute of Archaeology. The idea is to get the media on board with 2016's National Culture Policy so that we can make the public more aware of what is called the Belize Cultural model. Selene Solis explains: Today's session at the House of Culture was for media houses from Northern Belize, Belize District and the Cayes, and another will be held tomorrow for media houses in Western Belize, Belmopan and Southern Belize.

    Murderer Who Assaulted Journalist Charged
    He's a convicted murderer who assaulted court reporter Anita Nembhard in February. On February 16th - the same day he was convicted of murder - Byron James was was among the prisoners being taken from the holding cell at Magistrate's Court to go back to jail. He stepped out of the line of prisoners and lunged at Nembhard, striking her in the face. At the time she was taking photos of the prisoners. She made a complaint and requested court action, but police took months to bring a charge - and only after the DPP intervened.

    Getting And Job, And Learning To Keep It
    The Youth Apprenticeship Program offers many young Belizeans a chance at learning new skills and acquiring a job that they would not have access to otherwise. But in order to hold down a job, you need the be able communicate properly and work well with others. RET International is helping the participants of the Youth Apprenticeship Program do just that. Over the last week, RET has been conducting Employability Training to teach the participants important skills needed in the work place. The course ended today, and we went to the graduation ceremony where we spoke to the RET International's Program Coordinator about the training session...

    Police Officers Honoured
    Yesterday, almost 300 police officers were honored, for long, exemplary and outstanding service in a ceremony at the police academy. It's a moment of great pride for these career cops who've given their lives to law enforcement. And, plus, it's a chance for them to dress up in those crisp white ceremonial uniforms and march across the parade square like the recruits do. ACP Robert Mariano - himself an honoree - put it in perspective for his fellow officers:...

    Whylie Wants More Honors For Cops
    And if it seems like a whole lot of officers being honored, the truth is that it's been years since the Department last held a ceremony like this. Today the Commissioner told us that he wants it to be an annual, or at least bi-annual celebration:

    Police Host Sports Day
    And to put a cap on police week for us, we stopped by the Eastern Division Sports day at the Yabra Green. That's where police did everything from running a marathon, to playing competitive dominoes, to running five-on-five basketball - where even the commissioner participated. As for the much hyped media - police showdown on the basketball court, it didn't happen because, unlike the police, we in the media have to work on weekdays. The media asked repeatedly for it to be moved to Saturday - to no avail.

    Castro + Campos Conjuntos
    Villagers in Libertad won't have to worry about flash floods catching them like it did last year. This is after NEMO deployed heavy equipment to clear a troublesome drain. Now, this is routine work that should be done before any rainy season - but area rep. Angel Campos and the NEMO Minister Edmond Castro did their best to make it into a major event:

    Channel 5

    ComPol Condemns Extortion Case by Cops on Ambergris Caye
    Police Week concludes on Saturday with a massive parade through the streets of Belize City to culminate seven days of community-based activities.  While the department celebrated the professional achievements of [...]

    Police Department Has Not Lost Morals
    The department has seen a number of officers being investigated for infractions committed while in uniform. ComPol Whylie, however, maintains that the actions of a few rogue cops do not [...]

    Chunox Case Open, But Castros Get Away
    The shooting death of Richard Garcia in Chunox Village two Fridays ago involved a group of four officers who were responding to a request made by a villager to evict [...]

    Rochelle Chan Remains Innocent; Police Promise to Act on Senate Inquiry Recommendations
    Assistant Superintendent Rochelle Chan testified before the Senate Special Select Committee last Wednesday, refuting allegations made concerning his purported role in the visa ring involving Alvarine Burgess.  Despite being able [...]

    Kashief Gallego to Court for Jermaine Franklin Murder
    Twenty-five-year-old Kashief Gallego was charged with and arraigned for the murder of thirty-six-year-old Jermaine Franklin. Gallego appeared unrepresented in court today before Senior Magistrate Sharon Fraser. Due to the nature [...]

    Orange Walk Man Pleads Manslaughter for Death of Girlfriend
    Twenty-two-year-old Freddy Amir Blanco pleaded guilty to manslaughter for the September 2011 killing of his lover Nelsi Chuc in August Pine Ridge. Back in 2011, Blanco was arraigned for murder [...]

    U.S. Hands Police Refurbished Boats
    The United States of America has formally transferred three boats and equipment valued at close to a million Belize dollars to the Belize Police Department.  The vessels were previously seized [...]

    Police Awarded; Police Week to Become Regularized
    On Thursday evening in Belmopan, quite a few outstanding police officers were recognized for individual professional achievements over the years.  It has been two years since the last Police Week [...]

    Chester Williams among Long-Serving Awardees
    Top Cop and the Regional Commander of Eastern Division South, Assistant Commissioner of Police Chester Williams was also an awardee at Thursday’s ceremony in Belmopan. Aside from being recognized for [...]

    Southside the Big Winners at Police Sports Day
    Police Week culminates on Saturday with a parade through the principal streets of Belize City. The march is a spectacle with many features, including a clear distinction of the different [...]

    NICH and Media Hold a Conversation about Culture
    Culture is defined in Bella Carib’s 1998 song “Proud A Mi Kulcha” as, “the concepts, habits, skills, instruments and institutions of a given people, in a given period.” The National [...]

    New House of Culture for San Ignacio, But Why Was Town Hall Demolished?
    In San Ignacio, there is outrage over the demolition of the historic San Ignacio-Santa Elena Town Hall at the corner of King and Hudson Streets in the town center. Reports [...]

    Why “National Colonial Museum” is a Misnomer
    The National Cultural Heritage Bill is headed back to the House of Representatives next week Friday.  It is meant to provide a framework for the preservation of historically and culturally [...]

    Team Belize Invades Las Vegas to Play Poker
    It is an annual series that attracts thousands of poker pros and poker enthusiasts from across the globe. These players descend on Las Vegas, Nevada specifically during the summer months [...]

    Apprentices Receive Specialized Training for Employment
    Approximately seventy-one young Belizeans were successfully engaged by RET International Belize, which provided them with employable and entrepreneurial skills.  The initiative is as a result of a partnership with the [...]

    New Lifeguards Trained by YMCA
    In recent months, we have reported a number of drowning incidents across the country. Despite the fact that Belize is surrounded by bodies of water and is dotted with rivers, [...]

    PlusTV

    Man shot and killed at Teddy’s music store in Belize City
    There was a murder on King Street in Belize City on Wednesday evening around 6 p.m. It happened at Teddy’s Music and DVD Rental and the victim has been identified as 36-year-old Jermaine Franklin of Belize City. Police already have a suspect in custody. ASP Alejandro Cowo, Officer in charge...

    Jorge Lemus’s death being investigated as homicide
    Police are now officially investigating the death of Jorge Lemus as a homicide. The postmortem examination certified death due to cardiac thrombosis due to brain hemorrhage due to polytraumatism (head, neck & chest trauma). This past Saturday, Lemus’ body was found in a drain that runs along th...

    PM speaks on Castro’s troubles with sons
    Today the media got a chance to catch up with Prime minister Dean Barrow to ask him for his comments on various issues. One of those issues is the bad press that Minister Edmond Castro has had over the past few months, the most recent being his sons being caught with contraband in Orange Walk and ...

    Dorian Pakeman back at job as Press Office Director
    Another matter the PM addressed is the Dorian Pakeman issue. As you may recall, Pakeman had knocked down and killed 45 year old mechanic Dean Dawson. There were reports that traces of cocaine were found in Pakeman’s blood and also allegations that the victim’s samples were tampered with to try and ...

    Pacheco questioned on Kim Barrow’s brother- in- law’s nationality
    Yesterday, at the Senate Select Inquiry into the Auditor General’s report on Immigration departments of Visa, passport, and nationality sections, Addy Pacheco was asked about the nationality certificate for Swedish national Peter Dahlstrom. This case was mentioned in the nationality report and red f...

    Addy Pacheco says she was intimidated by Ministers
    Another matter brought up in yesterday’s Senate Inquiry was the fact that Addy Pacheco received the Won Hong Kim file directly from Minister Penner. That application file was lacking several key components. According to the Auditor Generals’ report, Addy Pacheco was interviewed on the matter in whic...

    Pacheco says she saw Alvorine Burges at Immigration several times
    Chair of the Senate Select Committee, Aldo Salazar, had made it clear that he was not convinced of the accuracy of the testimony as given by whistleblower Alvorine Burgess. Burgess had testified regarding her role as an agent in the processing of visa applications; a role for which she was paid for...

    Minister of Education says no tolerance for pedophiles in education system
    Last week, we reported on the case of the Valley of Peace Primary School principal who was arraigned for sexual assault of a minor. That minor is a standard 6 student at the school. As we told you, the child reported to police that she was feeling ill and went to the principal’s office where he alle...

    Two San Pedro cops arrested for armed robbery
    Last week we reported on a San Pedro tourist’s allegations that uniformed San Pedro police robbed him at gun point. As we said, police were investigating the matter and have now charged two of their own. They are PC Denfield Nelson Ramos, charged with Theft, Extortion and Aggravated Assault with a D...

    Arson in Toledo
    Toledo police are investigating a case of arson. According to police reports, on Wednesday night at about 10 p.m., 23-year-old Clarentina Coc of Graham Creek Village, Toledo heard a noise outside and when she went to check, she saw a man setting her thatched roof on fire. Coc told police she recogn...

    Police preparing charges for driver of weed carrying cattle truck
    Yesterday we told you about the huge drug bust in Belmopan where a cattle truck with Belizean license plate made its way into Belize from across the Benque border. Police intercepted the vehicle in Ontario Village and searched it. They found a secret compartment under the pan of the truck and disco...

    Over 280 Police officers awarded at ceremony
    An awards ceremony was held today, June 22nd, at the Police Training Academy in Belmopan in honor of over 280 police officers. The officers received medals in recognition of their excellent years of service. There were five categories of awards handed out today: the long service good conduct medal w...

    Top 25 PSE performers awarded
    The annual PSE awards ceremony was held in Belize city on Wednesday. The top 25 performers in the Primary School Examinations were acknowledged with certificates as well as $1000 scholarships to high schools of their choice. Minister of Education Patrick Faber spoke more about the award ceremony. &#...

    Amandala

    Gunned down as he bought Terminator 3
    Jermaine Franklin, 36, a construction worker, was making preparations for a movie night at home when he was gunned down on Belize City’s southside. Sometime around 6 o’clock on Wednesday night, Franklin, a resident of Fabers Road Extension, visited Teddy’s Music and DVD Rental, located on #16 King Street. The DVD he bought, Terminator 3 – Judgment Day, remains in a bag on the counter of the video store because before he could remove it, a man walked into the store and opened fire at him. Franklin ran outside the store but collapsed in front of the establishment. He had been shot five times in the head and neck.

    “Kissing” principal arraigned for sexual assault
    A 13-year-old standard 6 female student at Monsignor Romero RC School in Valley of Peace has accused her principal, Johnny Valencia, of sexually assaulting her. In the presence of her parents, the minor told police that on the morning of Monday, June 12, she wasn’t feeling well and so she decided to rest her head on a desk inside the library. She alleges that while she was in the library, Principal Valencia came up to her, grabbed her by the shoulders, kissed her, and touched her buttocks. However, the child pushed him away.

    San Pedro cops allegedly extort US$500 from tourist
    We are in the middle of Police Week, a time when the police highlight their good deeds and do a lot of public relations work to garner public support for their efforts to combat crime, but this did not deter a few rogues in their ranks from going on a rampage in San Pedro (La Isla Bonita). Reports from La Isla Bonita indicate that two cops extorted money from a tourist, Timothy Braun, on the island on Thursday night, after putting a gun to his head. Fearing for his life, the tourist gave them $500 USD. ASP Henry Jemmott was understandably ashamed when he got the report. The very disappointed Commander of San Pedro police led an intense investigation into the extortion, which led to the arrest of two policemen: PC Denfield Ramos, who was charged with theft, extortion and aggravated assault with a firearm; and Special Constable Orlando Mendez, who was charged with theft and extortion. A third policeman who was held was exonerated from all charges.

    Price of regular gas passes $10 again
    At midnight last night, the price of a gallon of regular gasoline, the most common type used by motorists, shot past $10 for the second time this year, with the first price increase being a result of the implementation of further tax levies at the pumps. However, Financial Secretary Joseph Waight told Amandala that since the tax increases of April 1, implemented to raise additional revenue to finance the Government’s budget, no further tax measures have been implemented. On April 26, the price of regular gasoline went up to $10.26 a gallon, the highest so far this year. Premium gasoline hit its peak price of $11.04 on May 11. Since then, there has been a price ease at the pumps, with the price of premium gas down to $10.53 and the price of regular gasoline down to $9.87.

    Lois Lightburn passes at 82, funeral Saturday
    We regret to announce the passing of Lois Nathalia Hyacinth Lightburn. Lois Lightburn was born on August 17, 1936 to William “Bill” Lightburn and Rosita Moody. She was the second of their three children, and Rosita’s five children: James Lightburn, Lois Lightburn, Carl Michael Lightburn, Camilla Leslie and Barbara Leslie. Lois had three daughters: Alva and Natalie Jeffries and Andrea Vernon. She enjoyed being a grandmother to Ryan Rogers and Bria Cross and doted on her two grandchildren.

    St. Joseph RC girls (Belize Dist.) and Holy Family RC boys (Stann Creek Dist.) are National Primary School Basketball Champions 2017
    The National Primary School Basketball Championships took place last Thursday, June 15, at the SJC Gym in Belize City, where female and male champion teams from all six districts of the country converged to participate in an all-day tournament. The 6 female and 6 male teams were divided into groups of 3, and a round-robin first round of competition determined the top 2 from each group, who then went on to the semifinal knockout round, and then the championship finals.

    ITT National Championship Boom Circuit results
    The Cycling Federation of Belize (CFB) had a somewhat low turnout for its Individual Time Trial (ITT) National Championship Boom Circuit on Sunday, June 18; but is expecting greater participation in this weekend’s Road National Championship, which takes place on Sunday, June 25. Here are the results for finishers in the ITT National Championships last Sunday: Elite/U23/Masters (20 miles): 1st place – Tariq Flowers (Benny’s Megabytes, 43:37); 2nd Nissan Arana (Westrac Alliance, 44:05); 3rd Giovanni Lovell (Digicell-4G Elite, 45:09); 4th Shane Jones (Westrac Alliance, 45:36). Masters Category – 1st Robert Liam Stewart (unattached, 45:59); 2nd Stephen Bisset (unattached, 52:42).

    Cricket Corner – Easy Does It lost the first to Summer Fever; and Excellence chased Berlan away
    Blessed greetings to all! Under the auspices of the Belize National Cricket Association, the Harrison Parks 2017 Cricket Competition continues in high gear, thanks to our kind sponsor, Bowen and Bowen. On Saturday, spectators and listeners heard and saw three-time champ Easy Does It lose the first game in the semifinals against young upstart, Summer Fever. Before continuing, please be reminded that during the regular competition, Summer Fever had lost the two games, home and away, to Easy Does It. Will time repeat itself? Read on, and find out how the game played and finished. Easy Does It took to bat first, and at the fall of the first wicket, 28 was scored. Then the second fell for 68. It started to look good for the champs; but the bowling changed, and wickets started to fall in this order: 3 for 72; 4 for 75; 5 for 85; 6 for 95; 7 for 96; 8 for 97; 9 for 100. All for 101. The super hands of Jermaine Baizar took a toll on the Easy batsmen by taking 5 big wickets. Malcolm Reynolds scored 23, followed by Alexander Reynolds with 22 for their team, Easy Does It.

    Belize exits CONCACAF Women U-20 Qualifiers in Nicaragua
    Our Belize National Women U-20 squad was expected back home today from Nicaragua, after losing, 10-0, to Costa Rica on Tuesday in the CONCACAF Women U-20 Qualifiers. According to reports gleaned from Futbol24.com, they had lost the Group 1 opener on Sunday to hosts Nicaragua, 5-1; so that puts Belize out of contention in the Qualifiers. Nicaragua and Costa Rica from Group 1, who complete Group 1 play against each other later today, will then join the top 2 teams from Group 2, El Salvador and Honduras, in the classification stage, where the winners of one group play the runners-up of the other group, with the two winners then qualifying as the Central American representatives for the final CONCACAF Women U-20 tournament in 2018.

    Editorial: Division and conquest
    Two different articles by Adele Ramos, the Assistant Editor of Amandala, in the Tuesday, June 20, 2017 issue of this newspaper which do not appear to be related to each other, certainly are related in the broader scheme of things Belizean. In a page one article, Ms. Ramos writes: “The IMF continues to press the Government of Belize to increase consumer taxes, particularly by upping the rate of the General Sales Tax (GST) from 12.5% to 15%.” In a page two article, Ms. Ramos writes: “Cyril Fuller, the stevedore who last week wrote the Christian Workers Union (CWU) demanding that the president, Dale Trujeque, and the negotiating team which has been in talks with Port of Belize Limited as a part of a drawn-out collective bargaining process, step away from the negotiating table, claims that he has been threatened via an intimidating text message from a member of the negotiating team.”

    From The Publisher
    When I was a child, one of the worst punishments my mother could inflict on me was to order me to go “sit in a corner.” Life would go on around you as per normal, while you were immobilized, imprisoned in space in broad daylight. After a while, you would wonder if your mom had forgotten about you and your punishment. Remember now, there was no time limit: theoretically, you could have remained in that corner forever, so that as time went along your mind would begin to play tricks on you. When would this end, when would this end …. Around 8:30 on Sunday morning, Father’s Day, an over-enthusiastic young police constable essentially ordered me to go sit in a corner. This humiliation came out of the blue, as we would say. The police had set up a checkpoint at the corner of Vernon and Mayflower Streets. Personally, I hate checkpoints in the city, especially during working hours. This was not working hours, but it was a Sunday morning, God forbid.

    A “test designed to discriminate”
    Dear Editor, Belize’s education system is designed to create an elite, and a majority failing underclass. Albert Einstein said, “Everyone is a genius. But if you judge a fish by its ability to climb a tree, it will lives its whole life believing it is stupid.” This is what is happening to the majority of our youth in the education system. It is difficult to implement change in the education system of Belize and the Caribbean because the decision makers are beneficiaries of the present system. They blame the individuals for their inability to progress in the current education system. Teachers also get the blame for poor student performance. The system is doing what it was designed to do – create a ruling elite and a majority servile class.

    Dangriga youth pioneers Hope Run – wants Belize youth at Penn Relays
    The 1st Annual Hope Run due to be held in Dangriga on July 8 is the brainchild of Dangriga youth, Kyle Castillo, 24, who is currently studying marketing in Jamaica. Castillo told Amandala that his exposure to the Caribbean has helped him to see what athletics has been able to do for people, and so he decided, with the help of family and friends, to launch his own initiative—the Hope Run Project—here in Belize. “The project itself was developed to highlight our athletes and lesser known causes simultaneously… The only currency we can offer to the causes is exposure. For the students themselves, our end game is to get them out and get them exposed to the Penn Relays,” Castillo said.

    RIGHT TO THE POINT: What really is a common-law union?
    Belize is under a common law system and one that many do not understand or know. But I dare say many do use the word “common law” very openly and easily, but I wonder how many appreciate what it is. There is the well-known “common-law” wife or husband, which is what I seek to address in today’s writing. Just as a background, it must be known that Belize operates under a common law legal system, which it inherited from its “motherland” – England. If I had to find a simple way to explain common law, I would say it is a system of law originating in England, which unlike the civil law system, is based on the unwritten laws derived from English customs and court decisions which then in and of itself form a body of law. By saying it is unwritten, I simply mean it is not codified into statute (legislation), yet the decisions that developed over the centuries are found in the cases decided over the years. Without going into a class of the English legal system, I would say that under the common law system the lack of formality of codifying the law into statutes helped to allow the law to evolve and develop, unlike statutes that makes a strict provision that must be followed.

    Six Belize delegates to learn from the Garifuna land struggle in Honduras
    This Sunday, the 25th of June, a delegation of six people from Belize will travel to the Caribbean coast of Honduras where they will participate in an organized exchange focused on the Garifuna struggles and victories for collective territories, reparations and ancestral rights. Belize delegates include community members from the Garifuna coast of Yugadan/Hopkins; the communally-held lands of St. Vincent Block/Serru/Cerro in Peini; the Rastafari-led multi-ethnic land reclamation efforts of Harmonyville in Cayo; and from the Black-owned independent media house Kremandala in Belize City. People-to-people visits have taken place between Belizean and Honduran peoples across maritime borders for centuries and today, cultural and social exchanges are constant. In recent years, organized convergences have focused primarily on groups sharing stories and specific strategies to protect the rights of Black and Indigenous peoples.

    Customers dissatisfied with BTL’s new network
    It was with much fanfare that Belize Telemedia Limited (BTL) switched on its new 4G LTE network last December. The new network was supposed to have ushered in a new, faster, and much improved telecommunications experience for its customers. That has not been the case, and the new BTL network has been a continuing nightmare for BTL’s customers. One customer told Amandala that her texting has been problematic: sometimes the texts reached the recipient as late as three days later. She berated her friend, asking “why doesn’t she answer her texts,” but the friend’s phone records showed that she had not received any texts from that person during that period.

    Under-5 deaths most common in southside Belize City
    Belize City’s southside has been known to be one of the locations hardest hit by violent crimes and particularly homicides, but what many people may not know is that it is also the location with the highest child mortality rate in Belize at 22 for every 1,000 children born there, well above the national rate of 12. A 276-page report launched by UNICEF this morning, looking at the situation of women and children in Belize, unveils the situation of children across numerous indicators; however, key areas in the report focus on the welfare of children, such as early childhood mortality and their nutritional status – whether they are eating well enough to support their wholesome development and a good start in life.

    They came on a cruise, and they are now in jail
    At about 8:45 Tuesday morning, the cruise tour of three men from the West Indies who came to Belize to tour Harvest Caye on-board the cruise ship, the Norwegian Escape, was terminated in Harvest Caye. Derson Frank, of St. Vincent; Renaldo Kerron Roberts, of St. Vincent; and Jamal Nathus Celise, of St. Lucia, were arrested and charged with two counts of drug trafficking after the ship’s authorities found over two kilos of cocaine in the room they were occupying. On Wednesday, they were taken to the Independence Magistrate’s Court, where they were arraigned and remanded to the Belize Central Prison until August 30.

    Ady Pacheco on “Citizen Kim”
    Won Hong Kim never set foot on Belizean soil. Yet the South Korean national received a Belizean nationality certificate and a Belizean passport. At the time Mr. Kim came into possession of these sacred Belizean documents, he was lodged in a prison in Taiwan over an embezzlement scandal. How could this happen? Ady Pacheco, an Immigration officer who has worked with the department for more than two decades, appeared as a witness before the Senate Select Committee today to explain how Kim was able to breach the system. Pacheco was named in the Citizen Kim saga because, according to the Auditor General’s audit of the Immigration Department, she accepted Kim’s application even though she knew it was incomplete.

    Swiss want “automatic exchange of financial account information” with Belize and 40 other states
    Following a meeting last Friday, June 16, the Swiss Federal Council—described as a 7-member executive council which constitutes the federal government of the Swiss Confederation and serves as the collective executive head of government and state of Switzerland—announced that it is seeking to establish agreements for the automatic exchange of financial account information (AEOI) with Belize and 40 other states and territories. Some of the other countries and territories listed are Andorra, Antigua and Barbuda, Argentina, Aruba, Barbados, Bermuda, Brazil, Cayman, Chile, China, Costa Rica, Curaçao, Israel, Columbia, Malaysia, Mauritius, Mexico, Montserrat, Saint Kitts and Nevis, Saint Lucia, Saint Vincent and the Grenadines, Saudi Arabia, Seychelles, Turks and Caicos Islands, and Uruguay.

    The Reporter

    US Embassy furnishes Anti-Drug Unit with 3 vessels
    Officials from the United States Embassy handed over three newly-refurbished vessels to the Anti Narcotics Unit of the Belize Police Department during a ceremony today. The donation was handed over at the Coast Guard base and is valued at approximately US $449,000, through the Central […]

    Seventeen youths pass out of Youth Cadet program
    Seventeen youths who were enlisted in the National Youth Cadet Service Corps program have completed the course, which began last September. Of the 17, 10 received certificates for having successfully completed the entire 10 months of training. The youths received training in behavior modification, life […]

    Belizean youth gunned down in LA
    Eddie Lino, 22, a man of Belizean parentage, was gunned down in Los Angeles, California on Sunday evening. The incident occurred at the corner of Denver and 58th Street. It is reported that Lino was walking when a car approached him and someone from inside […]

    Why was Maynor Portillo shot?
    Police are investigating the circumstances that lead to the shooting death of 20-year-old Santa Elena resident, Maynor Portillo. Police found Portillo dead after 9:00 p.m. on Friday, June 16 on the eastern side of the Novell’s Convention Center, with a gunshot wound to the head. Portillo’s family […]

    “Belize has week medium term outlook,” says IMF
    High public debt, decreasing economic performance, and a lack of strict fiscal consolidation policies, are some of the reasons that the International Monetary Fund (IMF) recently called Belize’s medium term financial outlook “weak.” The IMF, following it’s 2017 Article IV mission to Belize, issued a statement on […]

    US embassy raises LGBT flag again; no protest on perimeter
    The hoisting of the LGBT (Lesbian Gay Bisexual Transgender) flag atop the flagstaff at the US embassy, along with the United States flag on Wednesday, drew more people this year to witness it, but except for one senator present, it had no government official in […]

    Mayor Bradley weighs in on minimum wage increase
    Belize City Mayor Darrell Bradley is not expressly opposed to raising the minimum wage in Belize, but says that an increase should only come after careful planning. Bradley, speaking on the recent “Raise the Minimum Wage” march, held by Belize Leaders for Social Justice (BLSJ), […]

    Yellow Man barred from Senate hearings! But keeps his job as Macebearer
    Brian “Yellow Man” Audinett can no longer attend the ongoing Senate public inquiries, but will remain Mace Bearer of the National Assembly, following his assault on several media workers at the National Assembly several weeks ago. On Wednesday, Clerk of the National Assembly, Eddie Webster, […]

    DJ Hard Rock’s suspected killer caught
    After 3 weeks, the man believed to be behind the cold blooded assassination of Andrew Ian Bennett Sr., the beloved DJ known as Hard Rock, has been detained and charged for murder. David Richard Arnold, 25, was apprehended at a bus stop in Ontario village, Cayo at […]

    Fabers Road needs help
    The 2017 rainy season got off an active start, and drivers traveling on Fabers Road are learning that the road needs repairs and quickly. Specifically the area of Fabers Road turning off Central American Boulevard near Sister Clara Muhammad Primary school, down to the police substation, has […]

    “More than just a sign,” says Mayor Bradley
    Belize City Mayor Darrel Bradley, explained this week that the City Council’s latest Belize sign, placed in the Battle Field Park, is more than just a sign but a part of a greater plan for Belize City. The council held a ribbon cutting ceremony for the new […]

    BCCI forms alliance with regional chamber
    To assist its members with increasing their businesses, the Belize Chamber of Commerce and Industry is forming an alliance with the Chamber of the Americas (COTA). Kim Aikman, CEO of the Belize Chamber of Commerce and Industry and Gil Cisneros, CEO of the Chamber of the Americas […]

    Three remanded for murder of 16-year-old girl
    The close-knit community of Santa Familia village, Cayo is reeling after last Friday’s barbaric attack on a young couple left 16-year-old Emy Guerra dead and boyfriend Eliseo Bacab recovering from serious injuries sustained during the vicious attack. On June 16, sometime after 10:00 p.m., Bacab, 22, was […]

    Police confirms drug bust at Harvest Caye port
    After a week, police have issued official confirmation that there was a drug bust on board a Norwegian Cruise Line ship which was docked at the Harvest Caye Port in the Stann Creek District. Although the incident occurred on Tuesday, June 13, police were tight lipped and […]

    Elderly Toledo man drowns while taking bath at river
    On Monday evening an elderly man from Santa Elena village in the Toledo district drowned after he went to swim at a river located a short distance away from his home. On Monday at about 1:20 p.m., police were called out to the village where officers observed […]

    Breaking Belize NewsPJ

    US Embassy hands over over $400,000 US in boats and equipment to police
    Today, the U.S. Embassy handed over maritime assets which consisted of three boats and equipment, valued at approximately US$449,000, to the Belize Police Department. All three vessels were seized by Belizean authorities and now refurbished and equipped to fight criminal activities. The handover ceremony […]

    750 students graduate from Gang Resistance training in Cayo
    By Zoila Palma: Yesterday, a total of 750 primary school students graduated from the Gang Resistance Education and Training ( GREAT) Program in San Ignacio Town. Officer Commanding San Ignacio Police, Supt. Richard Rosado indicated that “This is a testament to the formation’s commitment to the expansion […]

    The saga for Belgian couple continues – BTIA Cayo reaches out
    Yesterday, BBN reported that a Belgian couple, Allan Dropsy and Jagoda Cwojdzinska, claimed San Ignacio Police took their passports and stole $550 cash from them. After the story was posted, BBN was contacted by the Belize Tourism Industry Association, Cayo Chapter (BTIA-Cayo) and they […]

    Dr. Jose Mena wins Physician of the Year
    By Margaret Mena: On June 16, 2017, my father, Dr. Jose Mena, won Physician of the Year for Ochsner Health System. Josie, as I fondly call him, is the best father a girl can ask for. He is kind, loving, and funny in his own cute, five […]

    MIT bust 72 pounds of weed
    On Wednesday morning around 10:30, the Police Mobile Interdiction team bust a huge amount of weed totaling 72 pounds in Ontario Village, Cayo. The drugs were reportedly being smuggled. Thirty seven parcels of weed were packed into a compartment in a cattle truck. The […]

    Mek Wi Teach Yuh how fi beg
    By Giselle E. O’Brien: Once upon a time, when time was time Monkey chew tobacco, and spit out white lime… There were once two families of mice. The father of the first family, Mr. Charlie Price, had long curling whiskers. He owned the biggest cheese factory in […]

    9 Bus drivers convicted for traffic offenses in Orange Walk
    The following persons (drivers) were charged for the offences listed below by Officers of the Department of Transport. Name of Driver Bus Company Offence (s) 1 Shane Pollard Maria’s Bus Company “Carried excessive passengers on a public service vehicle” 2 Alfredo Rodriguez […]

    Santa Familia villagers demand removal of police officer
    A sixteen-year-old villager was brutally murdered last Friday night in Santa Familia Village, Cayo. Emy Guerra and her boyfriend were attacked at the football field. On Wednesday night, villagers met to discuss their concerns about the escalating crime situation in their village. Villagers were […]

    Police issue official report on downtown Belize City murder
    Jermaine Franklin, 36, was killed on Wednesday night in downtown Belize City. On Wednesday around 6:00 p.m., police visited King Street in Belize City where they found Franklin on the street dead in front of Teddy’s Music and DVD Rental. Investigations revealed that Franklin […]

    GOB Signs Memorandum of Understanding with Microsoft
    A Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) was signed yesterday between the Government of Belize (GOB) and Microsoft Service at an official ceremony held in Belize City. This agreement marks a new step in a long-term relationship between Belize and global technology giant (Microsoft LLC) to […]

    Belgian tourists plea for assistance; claims passport and money stolen by San Ignacio police
    Two Belgian tourists contacted BBN today to plea for assistance from the Government of Belize, the Ministry of Foreign Affairs or any relevant authority. Allan Dropsy and Jagoda Cwojdzinska, the two Belgian tourists, are asking for any assistance that they can get. Dropsy told […]

    Blogs

    Romantic Dining at Aji Tapa Bar and Restaurant
    Whether you are travelling, or call Ambergris Caye your home, chances are that you’re looking for that perfect spot to have a fabulous date with your significant other. Aji, located about 2.5 miles north of Sir Barry Bowen Bridge can deliver just that. Nestled within the picturesque Bella Vista Resort, its roadside entrance features lush mangroves and tropical plants lining the pathway to the restaurant; complete with a bridge over the lagoon. When the food arrives, it takes center stage! Spanish-inspired cuisine, complemented by wines or cocktails, sure to excite the taste buds. Aji’s speciality, the seafood paella, is always a great choice to share with your date. Indulge yourself and have a fantastic date night!

    Grilled Lobster Tails - A Belizean Foodie Favorite
    Belize’s 2017 Lobster Season is officially open which means that across the country, households and restaurants will be serving up a variety of Lobster dishes for their families, patrons and guests, throughout the next several months. Now, while everyone may have their preference as to how to cook the marine crustacean (boiled, broiled or baked), we’re going to share how to grill lobster tails. Step 1: Buy fresh lobster from your local grocer or fish market, if possible. Frozen tails work, too — but you’ll need to allow for some time for them to thaw in the refrigerator. Step 2: Cut the shell with a pair of kitchen shears, but go no further than the tail. With a knife, split the meat along the same path as the shell cut line, being careful not to slice all the way through the lobster...

    Fascinating Facts About the Lost City of Xunantunich
    Thousands of years ago, the Maya empire stretched from Mexico in the north down to El Salvador in the south. They built enormous stone cities in the middle of the jungle, only to abandon them around the year 900 AD for reasons still unknown to modern archeologists. One of the largest Maya cities ever built, now called Xunantunich, was lost for centuries until it was discovered by accident when a villager in Belize came across a ghost of an ancient Maya maiden in the 1890s. At the time, Belize was still a British colony, and so an expedition set out from the capital to explore the villager's stories. They then discovered the site of Xunantunich, a Maya term meaning "stone woman". Xunantunich is unique in that it is the oldest continuously excavated Maya site in the country.

    Your Guide to Cockscomb Basin Wildlife Sanctuary
    The Cockscomb Basin Wildlife Sanctuary is one of Belize's most beautiful and biodiverse protected areas. Named for the eastern slopes of the Maya Mountains that resemble a cock's (rooster's) comb, this massive nature sanctuary measures more than 150 square miles of roadless wilderness that is home to hundreds of bird species and exotic wildlife. The Cockscomb Basin Wildlife Sanctuary is famous for having been the world's first dedicated wilderness sanctuary for the indigenous jaguar. Today, a team of scientists carefully monitors the jaguar population as well as the other four native big cat species of Belize.

    Belize: 5 Undeniable Reasons Why You Won’t Ever Want To Leave
    Staying and vacationing in Belize is tons of fun. One might even say it’s too much of it, though the validity of that concept could and should be questioned. There’s a lot to do here, even more to see and a multitude of experiences to have; enough to keep you here for a long time. With all that happens here, it’s no wonder some visitors never want to leave! Here are 5 things that will make you not ever want to leave Belize:

    Technology and Tourism
    As you may know, every year I write about travel trends that may impact Belize. The purpose is to reach many Belize tourism businesses that may not have established marketing departments or chief strategists that advise them on the impending changes to the tourism industry. For this version of my travel trends discussion, I will focus on technology and how incredibly important it currently is for the tourism industry. For example, take food tourism’s popularity, where restaurants are destinations. Restaurants should know that guests will be taking pictures and sharing it on social media, which means they need to optimize their restaurants for social sharing. Wi-Fi is a must, as well as good design and good lighting. Guava Limb is an exemplar of this.

    The Belize Blue Hole Experience
    The Blue Hole is part of the larger Barrier Reef Reserve System, a World Heritage Site of the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO). It is a world-class destination that lands on the bucket list for many around the world. Scuba divers are particularly attracted to this site for its abundance of marine life species and clear waters. Home to nurse sharks, giant groupers, reef sharks like the blacktip and Caribbean reef, as well as really cool formations and caves throughout its 300-meter width and 125-meter depth, the Blue Hole is a must-visit spot if you are in the country. There are so many ways to enjoy this spectacular formation, and to be honest, you don’t even have to be a diver!

    SanPedroScoop: An Opinionated Guide to Belize Turns 6 Years Old
    6 years ago this week I started a blog without much of a plan. I had moved to Ambergris Caye 4 years before – managed a bar for 3 and a half of those years – and was ready to get out and experience Belize. I’d barely been off this rock… I wanted to explore this awesome country, take some pictures and write a diary. I really had no idea that so many people would tune in. I’ve had months with over 100,000 different readers from all over the world. Now that’s pretty crazy. My life has changed immensely. I’ve moved from San Pedro town to 7 miles north Ambergris Caye – an area I used to consider “the bush” or “out in the sticks” and sometimes still do. I went from being single for years to having a boyfriend that I love. I went from being a crazy cat lady to being obsessed with my dog.

    Sleeping Giant Rainforest Lodge
    Photographs

    Mr Belize "Rigo Vellos" to give Scholarship's to Primary School Students
    To all Corozal Primary School living in Corozal, If you are attending primary School or Secondary School you may be able to benefit from a tuition scholarship by Mr. Belize Body Builder, Rigo Vellos. Rigo Vellos is a body Builder who has been around Belize competing on Body Builder Fitness Club. He now own's his Gym in Corozal called "Spartan". As stated by Rigo Vellos, Going ahead with his fitness club, Spartan Fitness Club, the scholarships have become a true reality. “At the moment we are providing 4 Primary School and 1 High School tuition scholarships, which will be academic-driven and community-service based. Successful applicants will be required to keep good grades and give back to our community while having the support and assistance to a number of organisations that can benefit from volunteer work,” he posted to Facebook.

    La Milpa Mayan Ruins in Belize
    Located in the north of the country in Belize’s Orange Walk District, La Milpa is is the third-largest Maya ruin site in Belize. Although excavations continue and much of the site is still being documented, visitors to La Milpa can tour more than 20 courtyards, two ball courts, and explore 85 structures, including four large temple pyramids. La Milpa lies in the middle of the Rio Bravo Conservation area, an enormous 250,000 acre (1,101 square kilometer) site in northern Belize currently being operated by the non-profit domestic NGO Programme for Belize. La Milpa is open every day throughout the year and there is currently no entrance fee. La Milpa is approximately a one and a half-hour drive from Orange Walk Town just off the Chan Chich Road in northwest Belize near the borders with Mexico and Guatemala. The easiest way to find it is to follow directions to the La Milpa Jungle Lodge which is located just outside the Maya site.

    International Sourcesizz

    Increased rainfall in the Caribbean reducing drought impact
    The Barbados-based Caribbean Drought & Precipitation Monitoring Network (CDPMN) is reporting increased rainfall across parts of the region, reducing short term drought impacts, particularly in the eastern Caribbean and the Guianas, and Jamaica. CDPMN in its latest Caribbean Drought bulletin for the months, March, April and May, noted that rains are expected to continue during June to August, particularly in Belize, the Greater Antilles, the Leeward Islands and Guyana, with little concern over drought, at least until at the end of August.

    Videos

  • 5th Multiple Indicator Cluster Survey, 4min. Earlier this week, UNICEF in partnership with the Government of Belize launched the results of the 5th Multiple Indicator Cluster Survey (MICS5). Understanding the invaluable support that empirical data offers public advocacy for children in Belize, UNICEF alongside its government partners launches the results of the fifth Multiple Indicator Cluster Survey (MICS5). #ForEveryChild Let's put on the lens of Melissa and Michael to understand the results of the survey. Both Michael and Melissa are 17 years old and they are both young Belizeans. Michael and Melissa’s parents most likely registered their births with the civil authorities before they were 5 years old. There is about 67 percent chance that both Michael and Melissa come from a female headed household. When Michael and Melissa where under 5 years old, Michael was more likely to be underweight, stunted, and wasted than Melissa was and there is also a nine percent (9%) chance that Melissa was exclusively breastfed compared to Michael.

  • Ribbon Cutting for Clinic in Ladyville, Belize, 1min. Ribbon cutting ceremony held for clinic expansion in Ladyville, Belize as part of Beyond the Horizon 2017

  • Belize 2017, 5.5min.

  • Mike & Terrilynn Belize Vacation 2017, 8min. Take a journey with Mike & Terrilynn on their all inclusive vacation at Coco Plum Island Resort and explore the best of Belize both inland and on the island.

  • Belize Jungle Paintball, 4min. Footage of jungle paintball in Belize, Central America.

  • Belize: Week one: CAYO, 8.5min. A weekend in Cayo district.

  • World Music Day – Leela Vernon, 2min. For World Music Day, we honor the memory of Belizean music legend Leela Vernon, Queen of Brukdown, who passed away in February 2017. She may be gone, but her music and legacy lives on Belize and around the world.

  • , 11min. Belizean Enchilades is delicious and easy to make. All you need is corn tortillas and tomato sauce and Dutch cheese. Anything else is optional.

  • How to Make Belizean Enchilades, 11min.

  • Belize Now | Episode 24 - Friday, June 23rd, 2017, 30min. In tonight’s headlines: The Government of Belize signs an MOU with Microsoft, Public Officers and Police Officers celebrated this week, and representatives from the Caribbean meet in Belize to discuss climate change. These stories and more on this week’s edition of Belize Now. Thanks for joining us on this Friday, June 23rd, 2017!

  • Social Media Training, 3min. News Five's Duane Moody returns to Belize after attending a three-day social media training to create a regional guideline for the media as it relates to best practices. The workshop, which was hosted in Bridgetown, Barbados, was organized by Public Media Alliance and UNESCO and saw media professionals from across the Caribbean streamline particular processes when using social media for news. Here's a report done by our friends over at NCN News in Guyana. Jennifer Persaud is one of the participants of the workshop; she files this report.

  • Belize City Fishing in around the sea side..., 10min.

  • Belize Progressive Radio, 3hr. Belize Progressive party talking about burning issues that is plaguing the nation of Belize.

    June 23, 2017


    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, and other specials


    The San Pedro Sun

    Employees of Norwegian Escape Cruise Ship busted with drugs
    After the Norwegian Escape Cruise Ship (NECS) made a port of call at their Harvest Caye Island getaway on Tuesday June 13th, three employees of the ship, two nationals of St. Lucia and one from St. Vincent, were charged with two counts of ‘Drug Trafficking”. According to the official police report, NECS security officers initially reported that they found suspected cocaine in a cabin, which was occupied by 30 year-old Derson Frank of St. Vincent. The Placencia Police were called to the ship docked at Harvest Caye around 8:45AM, and escorted Frank to his cabin. While conducting a search within, they found controlled drugs. The total amount of drugs weighed was a little over two kilograms, or four and a half pounds. During the investigation, it was revealed that two other men were involved: Renaldo Kerron Roberts of St. Vincent and Jamal Nathus Celise of St. Lucia. All three men were arrested and jointly charged with two counts of ‘Drug Trafficking’ and were remanded to the Belize Central Prison in Hattieville, Ladyville.

    Caye Caulker team stars in Beach Football Tournament
    Caye Caulker’s The Lazy Lizard Restaurant’ kicked off its first annual Beach Football Tournament on Saturday, June 17th. Five teams from across Belize took part—San Pedro, Caye Caulker, Belmopan, Belize City, and Corozal. While only one team from each region was able to participate, Los Catrachos FC team of San Pedro represented the Caye Caulker team. From 9:30AM to 4PM, all teams put their football skills in full motion, hoping to claim the grand prize and bragging rights. After several matches, the Caye Caulker team was crowned the champions. Tony Maldonado, coach and player of the Caye Caulker team, told to The San Pedro Sun that he was thrilled for his team’s victory. He stated that determination was the key to his team winning. “We always aim to win, but this was not easy. It was tough game, but with dedication and determination, we always persevere,” said Maldonado.

    Works to begin soon on Ambergris Caye morgue
    Ambergris Caye is one step closer in starting the construction for a morgue on the island, after a follow up meeting on Thursday, June 15th. Officials from the Ministry of Health, the police, The San Pedro Town Council (SPTC) and members of the Embassy of the United States of America met at the office of Mayor Daniel Guerrero, to discuss the morgue building plans, and the commitment of the Embassy to have the facility ready in the upcoming months. The San Pedro Police Formation believes that a morgue on the island will greatly assist them in solving major crimes. They currently struggle when it comes to homicide cases. Due to the lack of space to properly hold bodies, their work is jeopardized at times.

    Misc Belizean Sources

    mzz

    PUBLIC SERVICE INFORMATION DAY, Corozal Central Park
    Various government departments from Corozal are today disseminating information as it relates to their portfolios. If you have questions relating to BAHA, Immigration, Customs, Income Tax, Traffic & Transport, Fire Department, Police, Ministry of Works, etc. please drop by and you will be attended very humbly.

    BEL Reports on 2016 Performance to Shareholders at Annual General Meeting
    Belize Electricity Limited (BEL) held its Annual General Meeting (AGM) on Wednesday, June 21, 2017 to report to shareholders on the Company’s performance and achievements for the year 2016 as it pursues its Vision to become A Model of Excellence. BEL outperformed its 2016 financial targets, following four consecutive years of stellar performance, with net earnings of $27.3 million. Shareholders were rewarded for their confidence in the Company with dividends declared of $0.29 per share or $20.3 million. After five consecutive reductions, electricity rates increased marginally. However, the prudent management of energy purchases from Independent Power Producers (IPP) was critical to maintaining low electricity rates. Local renewable sources were utilized for 56% of the electricity provided by BEL in 2016 and the aim is to increase to 80% by 2025. The Company will continue its ongoing negotiations with potential IPPs, in its efforts to maintain low electricity rates.

    RET International promotes prevention youth of engagement in criminal activities
    The U.S. Embassy in Belize is happy to support RET International in its efforts to prevent youth engagement in criminal activities through providing employment and leadership opportunities. A component of this project is the Quick/Quality Impact Projects (QIPs) initiative which engages student groups from Sadie Vernon High School and Sacred Heart High School in the development of projects that will help to improve the neighborhood. Students from Sadie Vernon are working on video productions for awareness campaigns entitled, “Give Respect to Get Respect” and “Behind the Walls.” The first campaign aims at improving the interaction between police officers and the public during a stop and search encounter. The second campaign reveals what life is like for detained young persons at the Wagner Facilities.

    Grand Caribe Belize to Host 1st Annual International Deep Sea Classic Fishing Tournament
    Grand Caribe Belize is excited to announce the launch of their first annual fishing tournament at Ambergris Caye, Belize, on July 7th through July 9th, 2017. Fisherman/women of all ages are invited to the 1st Annual International Deep Sea Classic Fishing Tournament sponsored by Grand Caribe Resort this July 7th-9th in Ambergris Caye, Belize. This tournament is offering Belize dollar prizes totaling $44,000 in cash with 1st place receiving $15,000, 2nd place receiving $10,000, 3rd place receiving $7,000, 4th place receiving $4,000 and 5th place receiving $1,500. There will also be a series of prizes offered for the heaviest fish by type and the top angler overall, top female and top junior. With regards to accommodations, Grand Caribe is offering amazing discounted rates making accommodations affordable for all participants.

    The Government of Belize Signs a Memorandum of Understanding with Microsoft
    Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) was signed today between the Government of Belize (GOB) and Microsoft Service at an official ceremony held in Belize City. This agreement marks a new step in a long-term relationship between Belize and global technology giant (Microsoft LLC) to help in meeting government’s National Digital Transformation Goals. At the last Annual General Meeting of the Belize Chamber of Commerce and Industry (April 27th 2017), Prime Minister of Belize Rt. Hon. Dean Barrow announced GOB’s plan to combat government inefficiency and corruption using digital technology. Microsoft intends to help the Central Information and Technology Office (CITO) develop and deliver on its National Digital Transformation Improvement plan by: consolidating all its existing agreements into one holistic agreement for improved control and better pricing, helping the CITO team towards developing and adopting a cloud strategy and policy, and deploying a solution that will provide a single platform for a more connect, cohesive, collaborative government.

    COMISCA Meeting of Ministers of Health
    COMISCA Meeting of Ministers of Health of Central America & Dominican Republic currently meeting in Costa Rica to discuss and address regional health topics. Belize is represented by Minister of Health Hon. Pablo Marin.

    Employment Opportunity
    The Statistical Institute of Belize invites applications for the following TEMPORARY POSITIONS for three to four months, starting August 2017.

    PACT's Environmental Fellowship Award 2017
    Apply now for PACT's Environmental Fellowship Award 2017. This Award is valued at BZ $50K and is designed to provide financial assistance to mid-career and/or senior professional Belizeans. DEADLINE: August 11.

    4th Annual Spartan Bodybuilding Classic
    Introducing the date for the 4th Annual Spartan Bodybuilding Classic organised by Spartan Fitness Gym in Corozal Town. This event has become a much-anticipated bodybuilding and fitness competition and event in our town. This is where champions are made.

    Corozal Animal Program
    My name is Sue Paoletti and I work with the Corozal Animal Program (CAP). I wanted to give you an idea of the work we are doing with the animals in Corozal. So far this year we have had 24 dogs and 5 cats fixed and found homes for 17 dogs and 4 cats. We are looking at putting on another spay and neuter clinic in the near future and are very proud of the difference we are making in our animal community. Here are ways you can help: 1. Become a member of CAP for only $20 and receive discounts for local businesses - see the attached flyer for our June specials. 2. Foster or adopt one (or more!!) of our puppies and dogs. We currently have 6 four month old puppies - 2 boys and 4 girls who are looking for a temporary or permanent home. See pictures below of two of them.

    Manakin 10/20km Maya Mountain Race
    The Belize Wildlife Referral Clinic is having the Manakin 10/20km Maya Mountain Race on Sunday, July 16th. The race course is from Cristo Rey to San Antonio. "Ready, set and go... get started to train for this: Enjoy nature's beauty, join the race for conservation and challenge yourself and run 10 or 20 km in the gorgeous Maya Mountains between Cristo Rey and San Antonio, on July 16th 2017 starting at 5:30 am. Walkers welcome for the 10 km distance. More information on registration coming soon."

    Paradise Theater playing this weekend
    Kong: Skull Island, Song to Song, The Zookeeper's Wife, Smurf's: The Lost Village. CLOSED SATURDAY NIGHT.

    Belize Association of Museums is now incorporated!
    It's official.... The official signing ceremony took place today at the Museum of Belize. Special thanks to all the museums and collectors who have pledged their commitment to protecting and preserving Belize's cultural and historical heritage.

    Meet Miss Costa Maya 2017 Delegate – Miss Mexico, Ximena Cardoso Gutiérrez
    Age: 24 years old. Height: 5’9. Profession/Profecion: Degree in International Affairs and TV Host. Hobbies: Read, travel, ride a bike, do exercise, modeling. I enjoy a deep conversation, read the news at the morning, my best part of the day is to be alone,meditate and do some yoga. Stay on touch with the nature. Go shopping, spend time with my family.

    Channel 7

    Killed On King Street While Buying DVD
    During last night's news, we told you about the murder that had just happened on King Street. The victim is 36 year old Jermaine Franklin, and tonight police have the alleged gunman. Today, our news team spoke to police and Franklin's sister about about the murder which really came out of nowhere. Here's Alex Courtenay with that story... 36 year old Jermaine Franklin was buying a few DVDs on King Street when he was gunned down. Just after Franklin walked into the DVD store, the assailant ran in after him and fired several shots at his back. Franklin collapsed on the street, and the gunman fled. When the police responded it was to pick up the body and process the scene - which took over an hour.

    PM Puts the Brakes On IMF, Fast
    Yesterday we showed you what the Deputy Prime Minister had to say about the IMF's recommendations to raise GST from 12.5% to 15%. The advice came in the IMF's required Article IV Consultations. Deputy PM Patrick Faber told us that the government will reject the suggestions and find a way to grow the economy in its own way. In an interview this afternoon, Prime Minister Dean Barrow put it even more emphatically... Rt. Hon. Dean Barrow, Prime Minister: "You know I made the point to the IMF in the wrap-up meeting we had that when we first re-engaged with the bondholders trying to restructure again the super bond, initially they had sought to insist that a pre-condition to our discussions ought to be Belize's entry into an IMF program. We absolutely rejected that and we proceeded on the basis that Belize is quite capable of writing its own prescriptions and going its own way."

    PM Restoreth Pakeman
    Barrow also gave us an update about the status of Government Press Office Director, Dorian Pakeman, who has been on suspension since September 2016 for knocking down and killing Dean Dawson. Pakeman was driving a government issued Isuzu D-Max at the time. Pakeman was charged for causing death by careless conduct, but one month ago, the case fell apart when the judge found there wasn't enough evidence to go to trial. And, now Pakeman is back in his senior post at the Press Office, but not after a soft warning from the Prime Minister...

    PM Says Castro Brothers Controversy Overblown
    The Prime Minister also gave us his thoughts on the controversy surrounding Cabinet Minister Edmund Castro's sons, Wasani and Jafari and their eventful Friday the 16th. The Castro boys were caught driving without licenses, allegedly assaulted the police, and also allegedly beaten by the police, and then 16 hours later, busted with 89 cases of contraband beer. And after all of that, they didn't appear in court to answer to any charges - all the matters were settled one way or another. Barrow told us that while unfortunate, he doesn't think the actions Castro's adult sons should be as controversial as they have been...

    More Accusations From Monsignor Romero Primary
    Tonight we have more on the Valley of Peace case where the Principal of Monsignor Romero Roman Catholic Primary School was charged for sexual assault. The allegation is that Principal Johnny Valencia kissed a 13 year old student on the lips and tried to grab her buttocks. While Valencia was only charged for that case, an 11 year old student has come forward to say that Valencia allegedly kissed her on the lips in February. Tonight we start off with the 13 year old's allegation again followed by statements from the girl's mother. After that Valencia comes in denying the allegations and we also spoke to one of Valencia's colleagues who supports him. Here are those comments:

    Cayo Police Have Another Murder To Investigate
    From simply a 'body found' case to a murder investigation: 52 year old Jorge Lemus's post mortem has been released. Lemus was found dead in a drain in Unitedville on Saturday morning. He had bruises on his left eye and the left side of his face was swollen. As we told you, police were treating it as just a body found at that point but the post mortem results say that the cause of death is cardiac thrombosis due to brain hemorrhage, which is as a result of head, neck and chest trauma. Police say that they now suspect that foul play was involved and they will treat this case as a murder investigation until proven otherwise. We will keep following this case.

    Lemus Charged For Trafficking 72 Pounds
    Another Lemus who was in the news recently is Jason Miller Lemus. He's the cattle truck driver who was behind the wheel when police found 37 parcels of marijuana in a secret compartment under the truck bed. He has been charged for drug trafficking. Police believe Lemus took cattle into Guatemala at an illegal border crossing and then came back out with 72 pounds of marijuana to be distributed in Belmopan and southern Belize.

    Mayor says The Late Night Partying is Over On Entertainment Strip
    BTL Park - it's Belize's most popular social hub, a virtual entertainment strip - and many bars and restaurants have sprung up around it to feed into the stream of party-goers who throng to the area. And while those good timers go there for the freedom to float from maybe a casino or movie theater, to a restaurant, to a bar, to a nightclub, to the seafront - all within quarter mile of each other - in the late night and early morning hours, for residents of the area, the whole scene is just one big noisy nuisance. The mayor and his councillors were squarely confronted with that complaint last night at a consultation, and like Saul on the Road to Damascus - Mayor Darrell Bradley had a revelation: the partying until all hours has to stop! He told us why today:...

    Where Will Concerts Go Now?
    So, if the Mayor has now put a block on concerts at the Hour Bar Field - where will all the major performers play? That sea front field has hosted artists from Machel to Damian Marley, to Kes, to Taurus Riley…you name it - and that's where they play. But, the Mayor in his letter to the council says, "no more". Today he discussed the reason and the possible alternatives:... Darrell Bradley- Mayor, Belize City: "A lot of this had precipitated because really and truly there is not an adequate indoors facility to house concerts. When we had the old civic center we didn't have this kind of issue. I think when we have the new civic center some of these problems will be allayed because there will be facilities to deal with it. If you have these open air facilities and you are playing music, even if you are permitted to play the music to 10 o' clock or to 12 o' clock, you have a certain obligation to keep the noise within acceptable limits. But I think it is unreasonable to have an open air activity going up until 4 o'clock in the morning, and some people say that it goes for beyond 4 o'clock."

    GOB Strikes Deal With Microsoft For E-Government
    Today the Government of Belize and Microsoft signed a Memorandum of Understanding aimed at helping the government to meet its National Digital Transformation Goals. Microsoft will help to address problems with government inefficiency and corruption by incorporating more advanced technology. Government plans to integrate cloud storage and computing, as well as train Public Officers to properly use the new technology. Representatives from both the GOB and Microsoft gave presentations about the soon to be improved government systems...

    PM Says Party Ready For Municipals
    With months to go until the 2018 Municipal Elections, the UDP is getting ready to choose the candidates who will represent them. When we spoke to him earlier today, Prime Minister Dean Barrow gave us an update on how his party is gearing up for the elections... Reporter: "Where is the United Democratic Party when it comes to the preparation for the municipal election 2018 team setting up?" Rt. Hon. Dean Barrow, Prime Minister: "Starting off on the process of trying to arrange dates for the various conventions, identifying potential candidates and that sort of thing. We hope to complete the internal processes by October, certainly November at the very latest and some municipalities are going rather earlier than others but the whole thing should be done at the very latest by October, November and then we'll spend the next few months campaigning in earnest to see if we can in fact persuade the good Belizean people to give us another victory."

    Bradley and the "Bad Marriage" Running Mates
    And while the PM says his party is "revving up" for the municipals, is the Belize City Mayor ready to give it another go with many of the same councillors he's served two terms with. Recently, he called it a bad marriage - and yesterday eight of them went to the UDP secretariat - asking to renew their vows with Dearest Darrell. We asked him how he feels about that today:.. Jules Vasquez: "So then if it is like a bad marriage, are you disappointed to know that 8 of the 10 councilors are seeking to contest the election and it would be like asking for a renewal of vows."

    Philloughby Not Sure He'll Run Again
    And one of the councillors the mayor seems to work best with is Phillip Willoughby. But the man, the event called "Philloughby" seemed to be playing cagey with his colleagues when he accompany them yesterday to the UDP Secretariat to put in their names as candidates for the municipal convention. Today we asked him why:... Jules Vasquez: "Will you offer yourself as a candidate for Belize City council for the upcoming election?" Phillip Willoughby: "Jules, for various reasons I wasn't with my colleagues when they went to sign in. Over the past year and a half I had to go through 3 major surgeries. It's no big news, but then again because of the nature of those surgeries I need to consult with my medical physician here and one abroad that did the surgery and just to do a personal evaluation of myself to see how well I've progress since the operation. It's not to say it's out there like that and what have you or try to be a male chauvinist or wanting to say 'hey what happen to Phillip?.' No, it's nothing like that."

    Making Sense of MICS
    On Tuesday, we showed you, the media soft launch of the final report for the Multiple Indicator Cluster Survey, or MICS. It's an intensive study of Belizean citizens to find out about the quality of life of the country's women and children. This survey represents months of hard work between the Statistical Institute of Belize and UNICEF. And, to ensure that it doesn't just sit and gather dust on a desk, there was a multi-sectoral launch so that all the relevant government departments can get a compressed, tailor-made version of the results. Here's a summary of the results in report which shows that the lives of Belize's women and children have been improving. The Ministry of Health's CEO discussed them in his keynote address:

    "Dolly" Therapy
    And, NICH is finding a creative way to reach out to those children who that same MICS report would have found to be troubled, or in trouble. It's a set of dolls - and we don't mean barbie dolls, these ones are life size puppets. Courtney Weatherburne stopped by to find out what's so special about these dolls. This may seem like just a fun one on one puppet show to entertain little Avian. But really, this sassy curly haired dummy called Jazz, along with her friends are more than just toys - they are therapy dolls. And today to end off a two week training on the use of these special dolls, NICH handed 4 of them over to the Department of Human Services - where they will act as the Rover's adorable little helpers.

    Major Project Planned For City Canals
    For weeks now, we've been covering the situation with the Yabra canal which is silted up at the mouth. The City Council has been trying valiantly to clear out a channel and restore the normal flow, but the siltation just keeps coming back. That's why today we were surprised to hear that - instead of returning to that same solution they have a whole new approach to rehabilitate the entire Collet and East Canal systems - and it uses some very high science! Engineer Lucien Chung explained: Jules Vasquez: "Explain to me how this phenomenon that we see and we think: bway well, we could solve it, just trench out this area; it's not that simple."

    City Flooding Persists
    But, if you live in Belize City, and you cannot even get out of your house without getting wet up to your ankles - even after just the slightest rain, then all that high tech talk about sluice gates, and special pumps is just "yakkety-yak". That's what regular folks in our neighborhood on Dean And King Streets have been putting up with this week with the recent rains. Again, we asked the mayor for answers. He said the big truck is coming soon:... Darrell Bradley, Mayor - Belize City: "We were supposed to have this week the transfer of equipment which includes a pump truck and that should have happen this week. That's going to happen next week, because we have to do more renovations at our mile 4 facility just to accommodate the access into our premises for these various equipment."

    Ady on Those Absentee Applications
    Last night, we showed you portions of yesterday's Senate Hearings on Immigration in which Immigration Officer Ady Pacheco answered questions publicly for the first time since her name started getting called in immigration scandals 5 years ago. Her testimony lasted for just over 3 and a half hours, and during that time, she took a lot of questions from the Senators. And it was right that she did because her name comes up 96 times in the Auditor General's reports - many times for questionable actions as an Immigration Officer. One topic which we didn't get to show you yesterday was the conversation the Senate Committee had with her about persons dropping off nationality applications on behalf of an applicant. The Auditor General says that all nationality applicants must drop off their applications files in person. That means that Immigration Officers shouldn't have been accepting the files from someone else. But, it was a common practice, and when Pacheco was asked if it is against procedure to do so, she sort of flip flopped.

    Did Ady Inspect Correctly?
    Another part of the report which caught the Senate Committee Chairman's attention was the Audit team's extensive investigation into nationality certificates granted to 2 Chinese nationals. We've already told you about Jin Chen An, who used a fraudulent Chinese passport to get a Belize Visa, then Nationality less than 6 weeks later, and then a Belize Passport, 5 days after that. Well, the Audit team says that another applicant Zhengjun (Zeng Jun) An turned around and used this same fraudulent Chinese passport to apply for a Nationality Certificate. It is unclear if the Nationality was granted, the Audit Team also couldn't verify if he either attempted or succeeded in getting a Belize passport. They did find out that he was granted a fraudulent permanent residency permit.

    Making Museums Matter
    The Belize Association of Museums has been formed. It brings together all those small personal or community museums, from the Macoby Collection Creole Museum, to the Windows of Belize Museum into one group, under the NICH umbrella. We found out more at the launch today:... The group first started to come together in March of 2016.

    Chuc Appeals to Court of Arbitration
    He's been barred from running for President of the FFB, but Sergio Chuc has formally lodged his appeal with the Court of Arbitration for Sport in Switzerland. He is asking that body to install a 3-person international arbitration panel in New York to rule upon Chuc's Appeal of the FFB's Electoral Appeal Committee's denial of his right to be nominated for president of the FFB in the 2017 elections, and Issue a stay of the FFB election scheduled for Saturday June 24 2017, postponing the election and leaving the interim president in office, until such time as Mr. Chuc's Appeal to the CAS is heard in full and decided by them as binding arbitrators on the merits.

    Channel 5

    P.M. Maintains It’s No to IMF Prescriptions
    Prime Minister Dean Barrow has emphatically rejected the recommendation of the International Monetary Fund to increase the General Sales Tax to fifteen percent.  That proposal from the UN financial agency [...]

    Belize Will Go its Own Way
    The annual assessment by the IMF seeks to forestall future financial problems that member countries may face; however, its conditions have been broadly debated.  It is argued that the IMF’s [...]

    Personal Motive for Jermaine Franklin Murder; Suspect in Custody
    Thirty-six-year-old Jermaine Franklin was shot and killed while shopping for new movies inside Teddy’s on Kings Street on Wednesday night.  Sometime around six-thirty, Belize City police responded to reports of [...]

    Did Ady Pacheco Facilitate Visas?
    Immigration Officer Ady Pacheco spent most of Wednesday’s appearance at the Senate Special Select Committee pointing the finger at her bosses in the Immigration Department, as it relates to the [...]

    Immigration Officer Says She Was Directed to Take Applications by Boss
    According to Pacheco, it was not uncommon during her time in the visa section for her officer in charge there, George Reynolds, to receive applications for visas from ministers of [...]

    Castro Brothers Off the Hook; P.M. Says it’s a Family Matter
    Brothers Wasani and Jafari Castro made headlines on Monday when it was reported that the siblings were arrested last Friday in connection with several traffic offenses, as well as a [...]

    Dorian Pakeman Back on the Job, But Warned to be Careful
    Press Office Director Dorian Pakeman is back on the job, after being suspended in the wake of a fatal traffic accident that claimed the life of Gardenia resident Dean Dawson [...]

    Will New CitCo Restrictions Cost Revenue on Barracks Party Strip?
    The Barracks area has been the site of many outdoor concerts featuring local and international artists and music accompanies many events in the area. But following concerns raised by residents [...]

    B.E.L. Announces Modest Earnings for 2016-17
    The Annual General Meeting of Belize Electricity Limited took place on Wednesday night and the news is that the company continues to perform well for shareholders.  With electricity rates largely [...]

    Warning to Avoid Manatees for Boaters
    A female manatee that was mating was killed over the weekend. It appears that a number of manatees are at the peak of their mating in the summer time and [...]

    US $8 Million and 2 Years to Fix Collet Canal
    Over the past few months, we have shown you the massive silt build up in the Yabra Canal. The City Council and other partners have been doing the ground work [...]

    Municipal Elections? U.D.P. [Getting] Ready
    With the 2018 municipal elections only several months away, the UDP Belize City Council slate is already shaping out.  On Wednesday, eight councilor candidates submitted their names ahead of the [...]

    Philip Willoughby’s Run Threatened by Health Issues
    Is Belize City Council’s Superman Willoughby in or is he out of the U.D.P. Municipal? Last night, you heard Councilor Dion Leslie say that the current U.D.P. city councilors are [...]

    19 Certified as Caregivers
    Nineteen women today graduated from a certificate course in the basics of care giving, an important job as the population of Belize ages. The Belize Training and Employment Center collaborated [...]

    Museums Unite in New Association
    The Museum of Belize is leading an initiative that will see small museums enter into an association. Today, they officially signed the article of association that will see them better [...]

    Helping Special Populations with Puppetry
    Last week, a group of roving caregivers attended two training workshops to learn how to use puppetry in childhood simulation, as well as educational and therapy work. Mexican Puppeteer Raquel [...]

    Windows on the World: Microsoft to Assist G.O.B. with Going Digital
    A long-term relationship between the Government of Belize and Microsoft Service has been struck, following the signing of a Memorandum of Understanding earlier today.  The partnership with the leading technology [...]

    Team Belize Heads to World Series of Poker
    Starting on Saturday, a group of Belizeans will once again participate in one of the prestigious poker tournaments at the Annual World Series of Poker in Las Vegas Nevada. The [...]

    CTV3

    PM Weighs In On Castro's Sons Contraversy
    There’s been public condemnation for the authorities’ handling of the criminal matters involving the two sons of Minister Edmond Castro. Prior to being busted in Orange Walk with over $6,000 in contraband beer last Friday, the Castro boys, Jafari and Wasani, were held under detention at the Belize City Police precinct for traffic violations and allegedly assaulting a Police officer. The duo was eventually released, and since then there has been credible indications that high-level intervention stopped the laying of charges on the Minister’s sons. This has been flatly denied by Assistant Commissioner of Police Chester Williams and today Prime Minister Dean Barrow chipped in, opining that the entire affair is simply a personal family affair for the Minister.

    PM Rejects IMF Recommendation To Increase GST To 15%
    Last week we told you about the IMF’s Article IV consultation statement on Belize which called on the Barrow Administration to seek further fiscal consolidation for the country’s long term sustainability. Among the measures the IMF recommends increasing GST to 15%, downsizing the wage bill, introducing a fiscal rule which would see the Government introduce legislation that target reducing debt to GDP ratio to 60% by the year 2025, implementing stronger management and controls for tax collection, phasing out Central Bank Government funding, and improving the business environment to attract investors. Today PM Barrow spoke on the IMF’s recommendations, saying he’s basically not listening to them.

    Pacheco's Speaks On PM And Kim Simplis' Recomendation
    At yesterday’s Senate Select Committee hearing, Prime Minister Dean Barrow’s name came up during the questioning of Ady Pacheco, the former assistant to the Officer in Charge of the Nationality Section. The matter raised has to do with a Belize passport that was issued to the brother-in-law of Kim Simplis-Barrow which the Auditor General’s special audit flagged as not meeting the appropriate requirements by law. The PM and his wife had both signed the document as referee’s. Pacheco, who had processed the documents, said she had been advised that the documents were all in order.

    Officer Not Complying With Minister's Request Had Bad Results, Says Pacheco
    In last night’s newscast, you also heard Pacheco’ testifying to the Committee that she felt intimidated by the presence of Ministers at the Immigration Department. The Immigration officer explained that when a Minister was involved with applications, officers are almost forced to comply because otherwise it could result in bad repercussions. She also pointed out that Ministers were involved in requesting immigration files from the Department, which was a highly questionable practise.

    LOVE FM

    Education Minister Frowns on Sexual Misconduct by Teachers
    Last week we reported on a case of sexual assault brought against the Principal of Monsignor Romero RC School in Valley of Peace, Cayo District. The Principal, Johnny Valencia appeared in Belmopan Magistrate Court where he was read a single charge of sexual assault. The report was filed by a twelve year old student who […]

    US Embassy Hoists LGBTI Flag for Pride Month
    The United States Embassy in Belize hosted members of the LGBTI community and supporters for a Flag Raising Ceremony in commemoration of LGBTI Pride Month. Pride Month is currently celebrated each year in the month of June to honor the 1969 Stonewall riots in Manhattan. The Stonewall riots were a tipping point for the Gay […]

    Caleb Says LGBT Wants a Voice on the Church State Commission
    Anglican Bishop Phillip Wright and Bishop Roosevelt Papouloute of the Methodist Church both decided to break away from the Church State Commission, dubbed the Morality Commission. The church leaders’ withdrawal has to do with the final proposal which is expected to be made to the Government of Belize. Wright and Roosevelt believe their views are underrepresented by […]

    Opposition Senator Says Church State Commission Is a Sham
    Also speaking on the Morality Commission was Valerie Woods. The PUP Senator was at the US Embassy’s pride flag raising event. She told the media that the quote, “the so called Morality Commission” is a sham. VALERIE WOODS “It is a farce when you have a commission by whatever name that has been established for […]

    Hopkins’ Chairman Wants Unsanctioned Construction to Stop
    The Hopkins Village Council along with residents in the area are concerned over two parcels of land that the Council’s Chairman, Ted McKoy says is being unlawfully constructed upon. Unlawfully, because McKoy says no lease has been issued on the parcels nor is there any building permit granted. TED MCKOY “These are two pieces of […]

    Mace Bearer – Persona Non Grata at Senate Hearings
    In a previous newscast we told you of the decision of the House Committee to not terminate the services of Brian Yellowman Audinett following his outburst during the Special Senate Select hearing on May 17, 2017. The committee did take some harsh criticisms due to their decision as the Speaker of the House, Laura Longsworth […]

    Minister Castro Not to Be Judged By Sons’ Actions
    The run-ins of the Castro brothers, 23 year old Wasani Castro and 21 year old Jafari Castro, with authorities on Friday have once more placed the name of Minister Edmund Castro, their father, in the spotlight, and not for very positive reasons. After having escaped official charges for not producing a valid driver’s license or […]

    260 Days to Belize’s Municipal Elections
    The recruiting of candidates for the upcoming municipal elections is ongoing as we are less than nine months away from going to the polls. There is, however, a deadline to submit applications of interest to either political party which is at the end of this month. Today, the Belize City Council announced the submission of […]

    Former Law-Enforcement Man Convicted of Burglary
    An ex-Special Constable from Placencia is also in trouble with the law tonight as he was arrested and charged and convicted of burglary. Alry Augustine was tried for breaking into a home in Placencia and was caught on security footage which he had attempted to destroy. Augustine has been sentenced to five years for the […]

    San Pedro’s Officer of the Month Now Incarcerated for Extortion
    A police officer who was recently awarded Officer of the Month in San Pedro Town, Ambergris Caye is now incarcerated at the Belize Central Prison after he allegedly pulled a gun on a tourist and robbed him of one thousand Belize dollars. Police Constable Denfield Ramos has been attached to San Pedro Police for over […]

    PlusTV

    7 years for burglarizing Spoonaz Café
    Derrick Garbutt was sentenced to 7 years in prison on Tuesday. Garbutt was charged for the burglary of Spoonaz Cafe on North Front Street in Belize City in May of last year. Garbutt was caught on security cameras and so prosecution had clear, visual evidence of Garbutt breaking into the cafe and st...

    DPM Faber speaks on Castro’s sons’ brushes with the law
    Earlier today, the Deputy Prime Minister was asked for his opinion on the recent news regarding the escapades of the two sons of Minister Edmond Castro. The young men had a double brush with the law over the weekend with their unlicensed white Wingle; one in the Belize District and the other in Oran...

    DPM Faber says home grown measures over IMF recommendations
    As we have reported, an International Monetary Fund team visited Belize from June 6th to the 15th and then published a Concluding Statement in which it said that while the economy is expected to return to positive growth in 2017, the medium term outlook remains weak. It stated that despite Governmen...

    Public Service Fair 2017
    This week is being observed as Public Service Week and today, the 10th annual Public Service day fair was held in Belmopan at the Belmopan Comprehensive School. We spoke to Julia Lewis who told us more about today’s event. Julia Lewis, Ministry of Public Service & Information: Today we are celeb...

    Police open day as part of Police week
    Police week is being observed and as part of the activities, police formations across the nation held open days today to highlight the services offered by the police department. In Belmopan, the police took their showcase to the Belmopan Public Service day. We spoke to Officer Jaime Gonzales who tol...

    Shepherd’s Academy PSE Motorcade
    Today, the Shepherd’s Academy Primary School in Belmopan held a motorcade in honor of their standard 6 student, Ashton Daniels, who placed first in the 2017 Primary School Examination (PSE) for the Cayo District. Ashton finished 8th overall in the country. We spoke to Ashton who told us about his pr...

    The Guardian

    Three men charged while family demands justice for senseless killing in Cayo
    A trio, composed of Steven Manzanero, Armando Coleman and Reginald Patt from Santa Familia Village are now in their holding cells at the Hattieville Central Prison after being processed by the Belmopan Magistracy on Monday, following their unprovoked attack on a young couple in that closely knit village on Friday night. The three have been charged with murder, with Steven Manzanero additionally charged for the attempted murder of Eliseo Bacab, who from his bed at home he has provided crucial evidence on the murder of his girlfriend Amy Guerra. A postmortem on the body of Guerra, whose body was found in the Belize River at about 2:00 pm on Saturday, has revealed that the teenager’s death was due to asphyxiation by drowning due to head and neck trauma. Assistant Superintendent of Police Daniel Itche, has now confirmed that sixteen year old Amy Guerra was with her friend Eliseo Bacab at the football field in Santa Familia when three prowling males approached them.

    Ashcroft Alliance fails to unseat judge
    The Ashcroft Alliance has been blocked from meddling in the affairs of the Belize judiciary, for now. Justice of Appeal Samuel Awich, who Lord Michael Ashcroft himself was attempting to get removed from the bench, will stay where he is. The Court of Appeal has ruled that the complaints from the Alliance against this sitting judge have no real merit. The appeal is of another case which Justice Courtney Abel heard in the Supreme Court. The Alliance complained to the Judicial and Legal Services Commission (JLSC), asking them to seriously consider their opinion that he was unfit for the Appeal Court bench. Their premise was that he performed inadequately as a judge of the Supreme Court. Among other things, they asserted that he delayed for unreasonably long periods of time when delivering judgments on cases he had heard.

    Customs was discreet with Mai and Mark Lizarraga when they were caught
    The Guardian Newspaper has confirmed that two high profile individuals who were caught illegally importing items into the country were able to settle their problems with the Customs department in a relatively quiet manner. Readers will recall that back in December of 2012, Jose Edilberto Mai, Orange Walk South Area Representative was caught with 15 cases of Miller Beer at a check point on the Chan Chen cut off. Being an area representative does not allow for special privilege for beer to be illegally imported into the country and as a result, Mai was taken in and processed by the Customs department.

    Ady Pacheco testifies before Senate
    Ady Pacheco, the veteran Immigration Officer who was named in the Won Hong Kim passport scandal, had a tough day on the witness stand before the Senate Select Committee. She’s one of the public officers whose name keeps showing up in the Auditor General’s Reports on Immigration from 2011 to 2013. She has all kinds of explaining to do, and on Wednesday, June 21, she began pointing fingers at other people. When she was working at the Services Section of the Immigration Department, she claimed that she accepted visa applications as one of the front desk personnel, which then went to the officer in charge of that section. From there, the applications were sent to the investigation unit, which inspected the contents of the file, and it was sent back to the officer in charge (OIC). The OIC then sent it to the Director for inspection, and if it passed her scrutiny, then it was sent back to the OIC, who then passed it back to the accepting desk for approval and issuance.

    UDP readies for municipals
    Eight current Belize City councilors stepped into the UDP's secretariat to officially tender their applications for them to contest the upcoming Municipal elections in March of next year. The gesture is proof positive that the United Democratic Party is well underway to getting its slates together to contest all municipalities. Already the UDP has the full slate in place in San Pedro and the same is now being done for all the other municipalities. Currently the UDP is accepting applications from interested persons from every city and town. When that process is completed, the party will go through the process of holding conventions either to elect slates or to endorse them.

    LEASE-A BULLY
    A familiar local saying is that you can take a hog out the mud but one cannot take the mud out of the hog. There are those amongst us whom are attention seekers, and would go to any lengths to receive attention. Self promoters and aggrandizers they are. One such person has been recently dubbed the Facebook bully. This person lurks around on social media looking for any opportunity to invade and literally take over conversations. The individual could be very opinionated and obnoxious in a very partisan and rude manner. Some are of the opinion that because of a lack of court room appearances, the bully tries to remain in readiness form by honing argumentative skills of social media.

    Work to upgrade Commercial Center to start soon
    After what seems like a very long period, the loan with which the Commercial Center will be repaired has finally been approved. The repairs, as part of the Belize City House of Culture and Downtown Rejuvenation Project, were approved in 2014 and officially launched in 2015. The funding for the project expires in February 2018 and just in the nick of time, the Mayor got the approval letter for the loan from the Heritage Bank.

    Had to be told he is not a doctor
    In the last General Elections, a candidate appeared in the Albert constituency claiming to be a doctor. At the time the fellow went by the name of Doctor Jose Espat and nobody questioned the veracity of his claim to be a doctor. In fact he was even employed at the KHMH under the assumption that he was a real MD. Low and behold, research done by the Belize Medical Council verified this man’s credentials or lack thereof, and it was found out that he did not possess a doctor’s degree. With that he was dismissed from the KHMH and told he would not be able to practice medicine in Belize. He sulked for a bit and then somehow wiggled his way to work alongside one of Belize’s pre-eminent pathologists. Again the Medical Council caught up with this fellow who by now was going by the name Jose Espat Uc or Jose Uc Espat or some variation of the combination of those names. Again he had to be reminded that he was not an MD and again he was told he could not practice in the medical field.

    Beyond the Horizon 2017 closes $11.5 million dollars in projects
    The closing ceremony of the Beyond the Horizon 2017 collaborative training took place on Thursday, June 15, 2017 at the Price Barracks in Ladyville. The exercise came about due to the collaborative effort of the U.S. Embassy in Belize and the U.S. Army South, the Belize Defense Force, the Ministries of Health, Education, and Defense, as well as partner nations such as Trinidad and Tobago and Colombia. There was also the involvement of NGOs and private companies from both the U.S. and Belize. The U.S. Government’s commitment to the Government and people of Belize in the field of humanitarian assistance was further continued.

    Mayor Bradley says Belize City is ready for rainy season
    The hurricane season in the country has already begun and Mayor Bradley says that we are better prepared for flooding that is expected to happen this season. Mayor Bradley in an interview on June 19, 2017 recalls the effects of hurricane Earl. He says that the city saw improved levels of runoff as a result of the flood mitigation projects funded by the Inter-American Development Bank and some of the works that the City Council has been carrying out in terms of drainage and infrastructure. The council has taken up the initiative of marking flood prone areas and hopes that because of their responsiveness and continuous efforts, we will see continuously improving levels of drainage. Quite recently, there has been the development of a unit that will be focused on a 24-hour drain clean up and flood mitigation to better respond to real-time situations.

    New sign for downtown Belize City
    Throughout the North side of Belize City, there are beautiful and interactive monuments and areas where tourists and residents alike can take pictures. Those areas have even become popular hangout spots in the city and the Belize City Council, with the help of very dedicated private citizens, has taken on the task of making the downtown and Southside areas just as beautiful and engaging. On Monday, June 19, 2017, the first of such signs was officially given to the Battlefield Park in downtown Belize City, not without the help of Karim Berges’ Slingshot Advertising and Signs and attorney at law Steve Perera.

    Orange Walk Central Ready
    Johnny Briceño is shaking in his boots after he got the message that theOrange Walk Central UDP Standard Bearer Denny Grijalva held a meeting with his working committee on Friday June 16 at his residence. You see he has a right to be shaking because when the bell was sounded, some 250 persons answered the call. These are the core campaigners of the Orange Walk Central Division and they assembled at Mr. Grijalva’s residence in preparation for the upcoming municipal elections. In attendance at that meeting were Deputy Party Leader, Honorable Patrick Faber, Hon. Dr. Angel Campos, Hon. Elodio Aragon, Mrs. Lupe Magana Dyck, Party Chairman Alberto August and other stalwart UDPs too numerous to mention.

    Police celebrate this week
    The Belize Police Department’s work seems to never end but on Sunday, June 18, 2017, it was the start of a week of recognition for the officers. The Police Week started with church services at the St. Martin’s De Porres Church for the Eastern Division South and the Eastern Police Division North and at the Our Lady of the Way R.C. Church for the Ladyville Police Precinct. What followed were a number of media appearances as well as community cleanup campaigns on June 19. Areas that were cleaned and beautified included the Ladyville area, the area from the Haulover Bridge to the entrance of Ladyville, Kraal Road, West Street, Flamboyant Street, North Front Street, and Allen Burgess Crescent as well as several parks, and the Lopez Mateos Park in Belize City and the Boca Del Rio Park in San Pedro.

    Rapid improvements at the Western Regional Hospital
    Huge improvements in concrete and other works at the Western Regional Hospital in Belmopan over the last ninety days have been widely welcomed by both managers and the clients that are served. Works done by a multinational team, which included twenty Belize Defense Force soldiers from the light engineering company, have increased the hospital’s capacity to respond to a larger number of clients. Chief of Staff at the Western Regional Hospital Dr. Rene Godoy maintains that the hospital saw some four to five hundred patients per month on average last year, but that number has jumped to nine hundred to a thousand patients per month this year. Also, the population that the Western Regional Hospital serves has also jumped from 60,000 to over 100,000 in just a short time.

    Red Creek check point in Cayo improved
    The security of the Towns folk from Santa Elena in Cayo has been enhanced. As a result of a unique partnership between the San Ignacio (Police) Formation, Chaa Creek Resort, The Fire Department and the Community Oriented Policing Program COPP, the Red Creek Check Point Building has been improved and painted. This Building will now be operational, on a daily basis and will house the newly formed motorcycle patrol team ( 4 Police Officers and 2 Volunteer Special Constables) along with two traffic Police officers. This team will now act as a quick response team to police the Santa Elena Town area.

    Sulphonomics makes no sense
    On Saturday morning, the Belize Leaders for Social Justice, (BLSJ), organized a public protest demanding that the government raise the minimum wage. BLSJ is supported by the Belize Progressive Party, Belize Territorial Volunteers and Days of Healing Committee. They started the march at Constitution Park on Cemetery Road and ended, at Battlefield Park. With so much support it is amazing that only 20 persons came out. According to the information, we have gathered so far, Moses Sulph, who appears to be the leader of the group is suggesting that the minimum wage be almost quadrupled from $3.30 per hour to $12 per hour. That was what we saw in a particular publication. After seeing that sort of PIE IN THE SKY THINKING, we now understand, why this fellow was attending UB for so long. He perhaps holds the record for having attended UB for the longest period. Some of us were starting to mistake him for pieces of furniture at UB. By the way was it not ECONOMICS or BUSINESS he studied?

    UB to Honour 530 Graduates during its June Commencement Exercises
    The University of Belize will honour 530 Graduates during its June Commencement Exercises to be held on Saturday, 24th June, 2017, and Sunday, 25th June, 2017 at the City of Belmopan and Punta Gorda Town respectively. The ceremony will commence at 10:00 am at the UB Gymnasium in Belmopan while in Punta Gorda it will commence at 2:00 p.m. at the Toledo Community College Auditorium. The keynote address in Belmopan will be delivered by the Mayor of Belize City, His Worship, Mr. Darrell Bradley. Belizean Educator Dr. Elizabeth Cardenas will be the keynote speaker for the Punta Gorda ceremony.

    UDP Family mourns death of San Ignacio/Santa Elena Councilor
    Chairman of the United Democratic Party Alberto August has announced profound sadness at the passing of Councilor David Morey, which occurred on Monday, June 19, 2017 in Guatemala where he was undergoing medical treatment. “On this very sad occasion, we join hands and hearts with our Party Leader Rt. Hon Dean Barrow, Deputy Leader Hon. Patrick Faber and other leaders of our Party in the expression of Deepest Sympathies to the Family. “The loss of a loved one is NEVER easy. We pray for strength for the family during these very difficult times. May the soul of this dearly departed Brother, Colleague, Friend and True Soldier of the United Democratic Party rest in eternal peace.”

    UNICEF says Multiple Indicator Cluster Survey shows gains and shortfalls for children in Belize
    The Statistical Institute of Belize (SIB) in collaboration with the Government of Belize and UNICEF conducted a Multiple Indicator Cluster Survey between 2015 and 2016 (MICS 5). During the survey trained interviewers visited 5,242 households of which 4,900 were occupied and individuals from 4,636 homes agreed to grant interviews. 8,272 men and women were interviewed during the survey. According to Jacqueline Small who is a demographer with the SIB, the survey is key to ensure that national and international development goals which the Government of Belize has signed on to can be tracked. She adds that findings from the MICS looks at where we are in the development goals and what has been achieved from the last time the exercise was done; that was in 2011. “It’s a development tool providing a base line to see how much progress is made and to determine how much more is needed to achieve the goal,” says Small.

    David Arnold arraigned for the murder of “Hard Rock”
    21 days after well-known disc jockey and personality Andrew Bennett, aka “Hard Rock”, was gunned down in Belize City, police arrested and charged one man after an eyewitness has come forward and given a statement. On June 15, 2017, CIB personnel arrested the alleged gun man, 25-year-old David Arnold, for the murder. He appeared before Senior Magistrate Sharon Frazer where he was read a single charge of murder for the May 24, 2017 killing of Bennett. In court, Arnold was represented by attorney Michelle Trapp- Zuniga. No plea was taken from him and no bail could be granted due to the nature of the offense. Arnold was remanded into custody at the Belize Central Prison until August 9, 2017.

    Attempted murder on Jasmine Street
    On June 15, 2017, police received information of someone being shot on Jasmine Street, Belize City. They visited the Karl Heusner Memorial Hospital where they saw 24-year-old Wasani Avila suffering from gunshot wounds to the right upper back and right arm. Avila stated that he was socializing with a friend on Jasmine Street when they were approached by two male persons on bicycles. One of the male persons pulled out a hand gun and fired several shots in their direction. His friend managed to escape unhurt. Police are investigating.

    Raid on bars for human trafficking victims
    For the past few days, the Immigration Department has been conducting raids all over the country to investigate female immigrant workers employed at bars all over the country. On Tuesday, there were a total of 31 of these “bar girls” who were detained and being held at police stations in Dangriga and Punta Gorda. 3 of the bar owners visited have been also been held. Immigration Director Diana Lock has confirmed that these are part of four operations being undertaken countrywide to crack down on this so-called “bar girl” phenomenon. None of the women have since been identified as human trafficking victims, but they are in Belize illegally. Additionally, they have been working at these bars without temporary work permits, and several of the detainees have admitted to being in Belize illegally. Most have already been arraigned at the PG, Independence and Dangriga Magistrate’s Courts.

    Bail for alleged drug dealers
    Two men were arraigned for a very large amount of weed busted in Belize City. They have been identified as 32-year-old Noel Leal Jr. and 21-year-old Rudolph Belisle, both of #72 Vernon Street, Belize City. Both men had been in police custody since the morning of June 14, 2017 shortly after the bust. Late on Thursday, June 15, 2017, the men were arraigned before Senior Magistrate Sharon Fraser on a single count of the possession of a controlled drug with intent to supply to another person or persons for the purpose of drug trafficking, an amount of 6,713.5 grams. In court, the men were represented by attorney Herbert Panton.

    $10,000 fine for drug trafficker
    Emerson Williams, a 37-year-old resident of the Old Northern Highway Road, is in debt to the court in the sum of $10,000 imposed on June 15, 2017 after he pleaded guilty to drug trafficking of 189 grams of cannabis. He appeared before Senior Magistrate Sharon Fraser where he pleaded guilty to possession since he claimed the weed was for his personal use and not to sell. Prosecutor Inspector Hector Rodriguez rejected the plea for possession and with that, Williams was forced to plead guilty to the charge of drug trafficking.

    Drugs found on Norwegian cruise ship
    On the morning of June 13, 2017, Placencia police were called to a Norwegian Escape Cruise Ship that was docked at Harvest Caye. Security Officers reported that they found a suspicious package in a cabin on the ship. The cabin was being occupied by Derson Frank, a 30-year-old St. Vincent man. Frank was escorted to his cabin where a search was conducted by police. The substance in the package was found to be 2 kilos of cocaine.

    Arson at Dorothy Menzies’ Children’s Home
    Acting on information received of a house fire, police visited Dorothy Menzies Child Care Center in Belize City and observed a sofa and an AC unit completely damaged by fire at the back of the building. Kisha Coye, a 35-year-old foster mother reported to the police that she was sitting under a shed located in the compound when she was alerted by the security officer of smoke coming from behind the main office. She then proceeded up to the office and noticed a huge fire at the back of the building. She called 911 and informed them of the incident. Shortly after, the Fire Service arrived and extinguished the fire. All damaged items are property of the Government of Belize. Estimated value of damages is yet to be ascertained.

    $15,000 bail for alleged sexual assailant
    Francisco Levi Figueroa, a 65-year-old Guatemalan who has been on remand since June 2, 2017, 18 days after being denied bail and being remanded into custody at the Belize Central Prison for allegedly fondling a 6-year-old girl, took his bail application to the Supreme Court. With the help of his attorney Leroy Banner, he was successful in securing bail on Friday, June 16, 2017. There was heavy objection by Crown Counsel Jacqueline Willoughby based on the nature of the offense and that there is the likelihood that he may commit a similar offense if out on bail. His attorney submitted that he is not a flight risk and that the likelihood that his trial will come up sooner than 2 years from now is next to impossible.

    Seven years for burglary
    In May 2016, the Spoonaz Photo Café & Bar was burglarized and the culprit was caught on a surveillance camera. After more than a year, the police have indentified the burglar as 39-year-old Derrick Garbutt, an unemployed resident of Ladyille. In court, Garbutt pleaded guilty but not before claiming that he was drunk when he committed the burglary. Given that he has already spent a year in prison, he was only sentenced to seven years in prison by Chief Magistrate Anne Marie Smith on June 20, 2017.

    Self employed businesswoman convicted of drug trafficking
    A Belize City businesswoman was convicted for the offense of drug trafficking for 14.6 grams of crack cocaine and for possession of a controlled drug, 0.2 grams of cannabis, before Chief Magistrate Ann Marie Smith on June 21, 2017. That woman is 42-year-old Michelle Gotoy of Belize City. The bust was made on December 6, 2016 at the corner of Honda and Sibun Streets in Belize City. Allegations made by the crown are that police found her in possession of both illegal substances despite her version of the story. She admitted to being in possession of the cannabis but as it relates to the crack cocaine, she claims to have no knowledge of that.

    Attempted robbery and unlicensed firearm lands Jamaal Jackson in prison
    In the courtroom of Chief Magistrate Anne Marie Smith, 32-year-old Jamaal Jackson learnt his fate after being on remand for 15 months for the offense of kept unlicensed firearm and ammunitions. He was sentenced to 3 years for each charge set to run concurrently on June 20, 2017 after his mother begged for leniency in mitigation.

    Man found dead in Unitedville Village
    Fifty two year old Jorge Lemus was found in a drain on Saturday morning in Unitedville in the Cayo District. He was observed by Police with a bruise on the left eye and transported to the Western Regional Hospital where he was pronounced dead. Investigators have so far learnt that Lemus was at a bar in Unitedville sometime after midnight on Friday. Victor Lemus, a brother of Jorge, maintains that he was a heavy drinker and was last seen counting money at the bar.

    Remanded after pleading guilty to wounding
    A Belize City man who claimed that he was drinking when he attacked a man he knew and stabbed him for no reason pleaded guilty to wounding in trial on June 20, 2017 before Chief Magistrate Ann Marie Smith. The man, 33-year-old Danny Maskall, has been remanded to prison until June 29, 2017 and is awaiting sentencing. In trial, the victim, Clive Sutherland, was present to testify against him when he changed his plea.

    Money lender in Benque shot
    A popular money lender from Benque Viejo del Carmen is now recovering from gunshot wounds he received last Thursday. Fifty-one year old Erwin Cocom was at home unloading pipes into his yard from a pickup truck being helped by his nephew at around 11:00 am on Pedro Guerra Mena Street in Benque. As Cocom and his nephew carried on their work, two men came up to the house on a motorcylce. One of the men got off the cycle and approached Cocom and pulled out a firearm.

    Calm in the City broken by murder on King Street
    The relative calm in violence in Belize City over the past few weeks was broken on Wednesday Night. Sometime around 6:20 gunshots rang out on King Street when a man identified as Jermaine Monsanto was shot and killed. Reports to the Guardian suggest that Monsanto had gone to Teddy’s music outlet on King street and as he exited the establishment someone opened fire on him killing him on the spot. Very little else is known about the incident at press time.

    Malcolm Myers in jail for using deadly means of harm
    Malcolm Myers, 25-years-old, is on remand at the Belize Central Prison pending sentencing which has been delayed after he was found guilty of use of deadly means of harm. He was found guilty on June 20, 2017 before Chief Magistrate Ann Marie Smith Myers is a Belize City resident, who is accused of shooting 20-year-old Freetown Road resident Trevor Yarde on November 4, 2015. Myers was initially charged with three indictable offenses, attempted murder, dangerous harm, and use of deadly means of harm but instruction from the DPP asked the court to drop the first two charges hence he was tried at the lower court.

    Orange Walk man not guilty of theft
    An Orange Walk man is free of the charge of theft after his trial concluded in the Supreme Court on June 16, 2017 after a jury of 9 found him not guilty before Judge Adolph Lucas. That man is Juan Angel Muñoz, a 31-year-old resident of Orange Walk Town. The allegation made against Muñoz is that between the period of June 19 and October 10, 2010, he stole $137,916.46 from Caye Supplies, an appliance company located on San Pedro. At the time, Muñoz was the manager of the company.

    Principal charged for inappropriate behavior
    The Principal of Monsignor Romero RC School in Valley of Peace has been charged for sexual assault. Johnny Valencia appeared in Belmopan Magistrate Court on June 14, 2017 where he was read a single charge of sexual assault. According to reports, a 12-year-old student was feeling unwell and was sent to the principal’s office. According to the child, the principal kissed and attempted to fondle her while they were at his desk. The matter was reported and Valencia has since been charged. He is to reappear in court on August 21, 2017.

    Bail for Joshua Ramos, accused of obtaining property by deception
    A Chinese businessman is the latest victim of theft by deception. His claim is that a Belize City man has cheated him of $1,000, a payment for a Ford Escape vehicle which he never got. The man accused of the crime is Ladyville resident, 28-year-old Joshua Ramos, a construction worker. In a report to police, Xiaohong Zhu reported that on Saturday, June 10, 2017, he spoke with a man by the name of Joshua Steven Ramos, regarding purchasing a vehicle. Zhu claimed that Ramos requested that he deposit $1,000 to the Western Union in Ramos’s name as payment for the vehicle.

    Armed robbery in Dangriga
    On Wednesday June 14, 2017, police responded to an armed robbery report at Southern Quick Loan on Chatuye Street, Dangriga. There they spoke to 29-year-old Felecita Murcia, cashier of Southern Quick Loan, who reported that while at the business place, a male person entered the office with a manila envelope in his hand and immediately pushed her inside the office, closed the door, and took out what appeared to be a firearm. He pointed the firearm at her and demanded money. She handed over $412.00.

    Titan’s appeal against government fails
    The Court of Appeal has vindicated the Barrow Administration’s position, and it has lifted an 8.8 million dollar judgment that the Supreme Court said was owed to Bahamians Rohn Knowles and Kelvin Leach. The panel of judges agreed that the police department went too far with their search and seizure at their Titan Securities International Office, but not so far that an award of damages are owed. As readers will remember, in September of 2014, US officials unsealed an indictment naming Knowles, Leach, their company, and other defendants. They were being accused of participating in securities fraud, tax fraud, and money laundering in which US government was owed 1 billion dollars in tax revenues.

    Vehicle fire in Belmopan
    On June 19, 2017, acting upon information received of a vehicular fire at Scotches Restaurant and Bar located on the Hummingbird Highway, police visited the location. Upon arrival, they observed a 2002 white Mitsubishi Montero SUV engulfed in flames. The fire personnel arrived shortly and extinguished the flames.

    San Pedro cops charged for robbery
    an Pedro police have arrested and charged two of their own following reports by a tourist who says he was robbed by the cops. According to 28-year-old tourist Timothy Braun, on Thursday June 15 he was smoking a cigarette near to a restaurant and bar on the island of San Pedro when he was approached by three police officers in a golf cart. The officers accused him of smoking marijuana and as a result handcuffed him and placed him on the cart but instead of taking him to the police station to be processed he was instead taken to the northern side of the island. When they arrived near the Sir Barry Bowen Bridge, the policemen took Braun to an area near the water’s edge with one of the men placing a gun to Braun’s head. The cops demanded money to which Braun replied he had non on him but instead told the cops that he had money at the AirBnB apartment he was renting.

    Holy Family RC School boys are national primary schools basketball champs
    The National Primary Schools Basketball championship came to an end of Thursday 15th June, 2017, at the St. John’s College Gymnasium in Belize City. In the boys’ championship game, Holy Family RC School from Hopkins Village, representing the Stann Creek District edged out St. Andrews Anglican School from Santa Elena, representing the Cayo District by the score of 29-28 to capture yet another primary schools basketball title. The top scorer for Holy Family RC School was Aaron Nasario with 18 points while the top scorer for St. Andrews Anglican School was Kelvin Garnett with 14 points. At the end of the championship, Aaron Nasario of Holy Family RC School of Hopkins Village was named the Most Valuable Player.

    St. Joseph RC School of Belize City is National Primary Schools Girls Basketball champions
    The 2016-2017 National Primary Schools Basketball championship came to an end on Thursday 15th June, 2017, with the games being played at the St. John’s College Gymnasium in Belize City. In the girls’ championship game, St. Joseph Primary School representing the Belize District defeated Louisiana Government School representing the Orange Walk District by the score of 32-4 to capture its first ever National Primary Schools Basketball championship. The top scorer for St. Joseph Primary School was Briah Clarke with 18 points while the top scorers for Louisiana Government School were Kiara Chimilio and Rica Gentle with 2 points each.

    Tarique Flowers is Individual Time Trial champion
    The Cycling Federation of Belize sponsored its Individual Time Trial National championship on Sunday 18th June, 2017, on the Boom Circuit. The Individual Time Trial had participation from cyclists in the Elite, U-23, and Masters in the male division, while in the female division participation were from Elite, Junior and youth riders. Tarique Flowers of Benny’s Megabytes captured the Individual Time Trial title in a time of 00:43:37. The second rider to finish was Nissan Arana of Westrac Alliance in a time of 00:44:05, third place went to Giovanni Lovell of Digicell 4G Elite Cycling Team, fourth place went to Shane Jones of Westrac Alliance and the 5th rider to finish was Robert Liam Stewart who is unattached.

    The Hope Run Project will launch 1st Annual Hope Run in Dangriga on July 8th 2017
    This Non-profit Organization aims to foster the running culture in the South. Dangriga, Belize: The Hope Run is a competitive and participatory 5k event that encourages its participants, be it professional or otherwise, to run, jog or walk on behalf of causes/charities that hold personal significance to them. Today marks the official launch of the campaign to bring widespread awareness of this initiative to the public. A registration fee of $30 is required for competitive participants and optional for participatory runners. The run plans to commence at the 3 mile mark on the Stann Creek Valley Road and conclude at the Belize Telemedia Princess Royal Park.

    National Road Championship set for Sunday 25th June
    The Cycling Federation of Belize informs the General Public and cycling fans that the National Road Championship is scheduled for Sunday June 25th, 2017. Managers of cycling teams and riders who are unattached, please note that the deadline for submission of registration is Thursday 22nd, 2017 for the Road Race. Failure to comply will result in late fee penalty of an additional $20 per rider after the Technical Meeting.

    Independence United maintains lead in Stann Creek Softball competition
    The 2017 Stann Creek Softball competition continued on Sunday 18th June, out in Sittee River with two more games on the schedule. In the first game played, Independence United behind the steady pitching of Shalini Zabaneh continued its mastery of the competition when it blasted Seine Bight Flames by the score of 17-2. The winning pitcher was Shalini Zabaneh who gave up the 2 runs on 1 hit, she walked a batter in the process while striking out 3. The losing pitcher was Delvoreen Garacis who gave up 17 runs on 9 hits, she also walked 8 batters and struck out 4 in taking the loss.

    Brutal honesty is vastly superior to deception
    I do not believe that the people who created the term ‘political correctness’ have a handle on exactly what it is that they are trying to discourage. I prefer to identify the real, cold, hard facts that are manifestations of evil schemes! I then try my very best to defeat all such schemes. Let me give you a few examples: 1) Mose, totally ignorant of the simple word ‘artificial’ went berserk, his not-so-many followers fell right in line behind him, and they marched into the gutter. Their evil scheme was about bringing down a man who is truly a wordsmith and a first rate patriot! Kremandala contributed radio, TV and newspaper to the uneven fight.

    Words of Life with Pastor Barry Fraser
    People’s last words are considered to be their most important. In the Gospel of John, the apostle writes about what Jesus said before His crucifixion. What Jesus spoke about included the subject of love and the ministry of the Holy Spirit. Jesus told us in John 15:9 that, “Just as the Father has loved Me, I have also loved you; abide in My love.” Jesus knew that there will be many things which can distract us from our relationship with our Heavenly Father.

    Young motorcyclist looses life in Cayo
    A female football player and motorcyclist from Young Bank lost her life in a fatal traffic accident in the early hours of Sunday whilst riding along the Valley of Peace Road in the Cayo District. Twenty six year old Fabiola Velasquez was observed by Police lifeless and an ambulance service was called in. Vasquez was pronounced dead on arrival at the San Ignacio Hospital. Subsequent visit by investigators concluded that speeding on the loose gravel road may have been a factor in the demise of the young fast food vendor’s death.

    Dangriga teacher loses her life in road traffic accident
    On Thursday June 15th, 2017, police responded to a road traffic accident on Ecumenical Drive in Dangriga where they saw 26-year-old Naomi Abigail Taylor, Belizean teacher of Kids First Primary School and resident of Dangriga, lying motionless on the road with a red male beach cruiser bicycle beside her. Investigation reveals that Taylor was riding her bicycle to her mother’s residence when a motorcycle driven by 22-year-old Michael Estero accompanied by 17-year-old Calvin Williams collided into the rear wheel of her bicycle. The collision caused her to fall on the road. Naomi was transported to the Southern Regional Hospital for medical treatment where she was pronounced dead at 5:30p.m.

    Drowning in Punta Gorda
    Acting upon information received of a drowning in Santa Elena Village, Toledo District, on June 19, 2017, police visited the village. Upon arrival, they observed the body of 85-year-old Anuncion Choc, farmer of Santa Elena Village, Toledo District about half mile off the right hand side of the main road in the village by the riverside. Investigation reveals that about 12:00 p.m. on the same day, Choc went to take a bath at the river which is located about 200 yards from his home. When he didn’t return, his granddaughter went to look for him but only found his clothes and soap near the river bank. A search was conducted in the area and about 250 yards from where his clothing was discovered, Choc’s body was discovered. His body was retrieved from the river and transported to the Punta Gorda Hospital where he was pronounced dead.

    Just My Luck
    Are you one of the lucky ones? Are you one of those fortunate people who just seem to have all the luck in life? They are successful in love, in their careers, in their finances, and in leading happy and meaningful lives. Thomas Jefferson once said “I’m a great believer in luck, and I find the harder I work, the more I have of it.” What, though, is luck? The dictionary defines luck as the “events or circumstances that operate for or against an individual.” But if we analyze Jefferson’s statement, luck then has nothing to do with something operating for or against you. Luck becomes less of a matter of chance and more a matter of being open to new experiences, perseverance, hard work, and positive thinking.

    The Belize Times

    If Dah Noh Soh
    My God… The monster who murdered 16-year-old Emy Guerra has killed before. He murdered a student in 2005, stabbed him to death. He was convicted of manslaughter in 2008 and sentenced to 15 years. That same year the Court of Appeal overturned that conviction on a technicality and ordered a retrial. That was 2008. This is 2017 and still no retrial. If the system had worked, Steven Manzanero may have been behind bars and a sixteen-year-old child would have had the opportunity to have a life. This is frigging unacceptable. The system failed Emy Guerra and she is dead. Mark… All of a sudden, out of the blue (or red as the case certainly is), Mark Espat has been resurrected in the Amandala. The fact that the nation’s largest newspaper contains a fluff piece on the man considered Judas by the PUP and Jesus by Dean Barrow isn’t just happenstance.

    CASTROS AND COPS CLASH! – ‘Uncle Chester’ To The Rescue
    At around 3:30am Friday morning, Jafari Castro, 21, and Wasani Castro, 23, both sons of Minister Edmond Castro, were involved in an altercation with Police in the Conchshell Bay Area. That altercation led to their detention, along with a friend identified as Dedric Ramclam, by PC Shelrick Caliz and members of the Southside Strike team called in as reinforcements when the men resisted arrest. While being processed at Precinct 1, Wasani Castro assaulted PC Donescio Coc, punching him to the right side of the head before he was subdued with assistance from other officers. Both the initial altercation and the altercation in the Police station were documented by the officers, and both officers requested Court action, yet within hours the men were freed, without charges levied against them.

    Ady Pacheco: UDP MINISTERS INTIMIDATED ME!
    Ady Pacheco, one of the most scandalized immigration officers of recent memory, and long believed to be one of the most criminally culpable in Immigration corruption with the possible exception of UDP Ministers, testified yesterday that on many occasions applications were brought in by Ministers, their drivers and even their secretaries. Under intense examination, Pacheco, whose name was called approximately 90 times in the Auditor-General’s Nationality Report, claimed that she and others processed whatever UDP Ministers brought in because they were intimidated and afraid of repercussions. According to Pacheco, they received those applications, many incomplete, “From Minister Penner and from all the ministers that came. I mean this is Belize. This is how it works sadly but it’s the truth. If an officer does not comply with the request made by a Minister, they simply just move you to somewhere else.”

    Barrow RAISES Gas Prices AGAIN!
    Without warning, and with not a care for Belizeans who are suffering from severe GAS-tritis, the Barrow Administration at midnight Tuesday raised the price of Regular Fuel, used by a vast majority of consumers, by a whopping 31 cents per gallon. In Belize City, the cost of a gallon of Regular Fuel is now way past the $10 mark, at $10.18, and higher in the districts. As a sick joke from this diabolical dictator, the price of Diesel Fuel, the stable of the transportation and productive sectors, went down – BY ONE CENT. The price of Super Fuel remains the same, but there are reports that at midnight tonight that will go up as well.

    Monsters Charged for Bizarre Murder
    On Monday, June 19, Steven Manzanero, Reginald Patt, and Armando Coleman were charged for the murder of Emy Guerra, 16 and the attempted murder of Eliseo Bacab, 22. The unexpected and senseless attack which took the life of the teenager from Santa Familia Village, Cayo and left Bacab grievously wounded can only be described as a monstrous act, perpetrated by monsters. On Friday night, Guerra and her boyfriend Bacab were hanging out at the football field in Santa Familia Village when they were attacked by three men that they knew. According to Bacab, the men were drinking, and all Steven Manzanero said was, “Hey guys the thing that I will do right now, I don’t want nobody to say anything.” With his neck covered in bandages and lacerations and cut wounds on his back, Bacab explained to the media early this week, “me and Amy were sitting but when I hear that I tried to stand and then the boy grabbed by my neck with his hand and he had a knife and he stabbed me like 6 times right here.”

    Complete and Utter Bullshit
    Over the weekend a 16-year-old girl was brutally murdered, her throat cut before she was thrown into the river. Her boyfriend’s neck was also cut, and he was thrown in the river but survived. Old man in the media that I am, cold and callous even, I watched near tears as a mother spoke about her child. I watched her eyes. They lit up with pride when she spoke about her daughter going looking for jobs so she could save up her money to go to CET to study to be a chef. And then I watched as reality dimmed that pride and she understood that these memories are all she will ever have of her child. It was damned sad. I went into the archives today to check the name of one of the persons who viciously and cold-bloodedly attacked this boy and girl. Steven Manzanero was fifteen when he killed for the first time, in 2005. His victim that time was a high-school student. Manzanero stabbed him in the stomach, and from my research I learned that the young man died screaming in horrible agony.

    Barrow’s Cross to Bear
    In October, 2016, Dean Oliver Barrow rewarded Edmond Castro, always a Cabinet bridesmaid and never a bride, with the portfolios of Transportation and NEMO. The unexpected anointing of the integrity-challenged UDP representative was the result of tumultuous times in the UDP. Two of Mr. Barrow’s go-to Ministers, Gaspar Vega and John Saldivar, had seen their stars blown out of the sky by explosive charges of corruption, and even with the liberal use of Senators at his disposal, the PM had no more tricks to pull out of the hat. But Mr. Castro has a problem, and his problem has long created problems for Mr. Barrow who dearly loves to pontificate about his double-sided machete even though he hasn’t laid eyes or hands on that rusty old implement since 2008. The man from Maskall, who is now remembered for all manner of things other than clearing the land, is known as a very shady fellow.

    Tarique Flowers & Alicia Thompson Win CFB Road Championship Individual Time Trials
    Team Benny’s Megabytes’ Tarique Flowers was 1st Elite rider while Team Belize Bank Swoosh’s Alicia Thompson was 1st Female rider in the Cycling Federation of Belize’s individual time trials leading up to the National Road Championships, held on the Burrell Boom bypass on Sunday morning. The national championships 102-mile road race starts from the “Drums of Our Fathers” monument in Dangriga, to the finish line at the Leslie’s Imports on the George Price Highway in Belize City on Sunday, June 25.

    Hopkins’ Boys Win National Basketball Championship
    The Holy Family RC School boys from Hopkins Village, Stann Creek District won the national primary schools basketball championship hosted by the National Sports Council at the SJC gym last Thursday, June 15. In Game 1, the Cayo champs, the St. Andrews Anglican boys of San Ignacio ran over the Toledo champs – the Punta Gorda Methodist boys 37-13; led by Kelvin Garnett scoring 16 pts. P.G.’s Lazaro Barrientos scored 7pts. In Game 2, the Belize City champs – the St. Ignatius RC boys had stomped the Corozal champs, the Libertad Methodist boys: 53-3; led by Kevin Peters with 10pts. Corozal’s Jesey Leslie scored 3pts.

    St. Joseph’s RC Girls Win National Basketball Championship
    The St. Joseph’s RC School girls won the national primary schools basketball championship hosted by the National Sports Council at the SJC gym last Thursday, June 15. In Game 1, the Cayo district champs, the St. Francis Xavier RC School girls from Esperanza Village blew out the Toledo champs, the Punta Gorda Methodist girls: 24-0 led by Allyeisha Bowman with 8pts and Hadie Vernon added 6pts. In Game 2, the St. Joseph’s girls ran over the Corozal champs, the Libertad Methodist girls: 60-0; led by MVP Briah Clarke with 34pts, and Afeni Lamb added 20pts. In Game 3, the Stann Creek champs, the Holy Family RC girls from Hopkins Village blew away the Toledo girls: 20-5 led by Shendra Casimiro with 16 pts. Toledo’s Jasmin Griffith scored 3pts.

    Where is the Promised Development in Cayo Northeast?
    There is currently flooding in Billy White Village, and no help from the Ministry of Works or NEMO. Every year during the rainy season the village of Billy White gets flooded. Every year for the past 9 years we have been asking for the assistance of the Government to build adequate storm drains, put in culverts and dump materials on low areas. Nothing has been done. Billy White is a low-lying flood prone community in dire need of GOB intervention. However, the small community in Cayo Northeast comprised of about 50% Belizeans and 50% non-Belizeans has been abandoned by this government. Currently the road that leads to Santa Familia and into Bullet tree and the road to Spanish Lookout is in a disastrous condition.

    Thinking Out Loud
    By: Mayor Kevin Bernard. As I write this at the start of the week, I feel that we have reached a critical stage in our democracy where as a people we need to decide if we are really willing to do away with every concept of right and wrong ingrained in us. I can tell you that now, more than at any time in my political career, I am ashamed of what politicians are doing to our people and to this country. Whatever happened to serving the people who elected them into office? Whatever happened to placing a hand on the bible and swearing an oath to serve the country faithfully and well? Whatever happened to being moral and good persons of integrity who can be trusted to always be on the side of right? I have said it before and I will say it again – sometimes I am ashamed of where we have come.

    MY PERSPECTIVE – THE YELLOW FACTOR
    How do you parse or analyse the events that have unfolded concerning the brutish attack in the National Assembly by UDP operatives, which included the one known as Yellowman? Some very curious things have happened leading to the so called reprimand of the Sergeant at Arms/Mace Bearer for his criminal acts done inside the National Assembly Chamber and during the Senate Inquiry into the findings in the Auditor General’s Report. It is trite knowledge now that the political party chairman and his associates made attempts to and in reality did indeed disrupt the hearing on the occasion of their “sortie,” to use the term from the Amandala editorial. Apt term, because in my mind I was seeing the little airplanes launching their forays into enemy territory, and cheering at their success in disabling the victim. ...

    Franklin Gunned Down on King Street
    Shortly after 6 p.m. on Wednesday night gunshots rang out on Belize City’s volatile southside. When it was done, Jermaine Franklin, 36, was left dead at #16 King Street, in the doorway of Teddy’s Music. Information to the Belize Times is that Franklin had just gone to purchase a DVD at Teddy’s Music and DVD Rental when a man up and opened fire, hitting him multiple times in the body. He was transported to the Karl Heusner Memorial Hospital where he was certified dead by medical officials.

    Gough Under the Scalpel in Negligence Lawsuit
    For two days in last week’s Court of Appeal Session, a panel of judges heard an appeal brought by UDP appointed Chair of the Belize Medical Council, Dr. George Gough. He is trying to reverse a judgment from the Supreme Court that he was negligent in the performance as a surgeon, and that he owes the aggrieved patient an award of $52,520. Readers may be aware of what the case is. The patient was Alice Arana-Gillett, and back in October 2009, she began experiencing severe pains. She was rushed to a private hospital. Dr. Gough became the doctor who attended to her, and he diagnosed that she needed to remove her gall bladder. He recommended laparoscopic surgery, and assured her that it would be minimally invasive. This type of surgery was supposedly low impact, that she would make a speedy recovery.

    Family of Slain Teen Demands Justice
    On Tuesday morning, family members of murder victim Emy Guerra along with Santa Familia villagers and residents from the twin towns gathered in front of the San Ignacio Police Station awaiting the arraignment of the Steven Manzanero, Armando Coleman and Reginald Patt. The outraged protesters held banners stating “Life imprisonment is what they deserve,” and “lock them up and throw away the key.” Kathy Guerra, the mother of Emy Guerra, says she was told by officers that the men had been arraigned on Monday in Belmopan Magistrate’s Court since no Magistrate was available in San Ignacio Town – “The Police told me that they are not here right now – yesterday they took them to Belmopan and they charged them already.”

    US Raises Rainbow Flag
    For a second time in Belize’s history, the United States Embassy which promotes LGBTI rights has raised a pride flag at its Floral Park Road compound in Belmopan. Present as guest speakers were Chargé d’ Affaires, Adrienne Galanek and UNIBAM’s executive director, Caleb Orozco. With 8 stripes of different colours, the rainbow flag honours the LGBTI community and will be flown at the Embassy until the end of June which is designated as LGBTI Pride Month. As explained by Galanek Pride Month honours the 1969 Stonewall Riots in Greenwich Village in New York which served as a tipping point for the Gay Liberation Movement in the US. Among all the activities planned throughout the month in major US cities are memorials for those who have been lost to hate crimes and HIV/AIDS. Galanek lamented, “unfortunately, even today in 2017, the struggle for LGBTI rights and security continues, as tragically do the attacks on the LGBTI community.”

    Minister’s Sons Busted with Contraband
    On Friday afternoon Jafari Castro and Wasani Castro, sons of Minister Edmond Castro, were inexplicably freed despite assaulting two Police officers assigned to Precinct 1, PCs Donescio Coc and Shelrick Caliz, and committing various traffic and other offences. Less than six hours after, the two boys would be in the custody of Customs officials after they were busted transporting 89 cases of contraband Corona beers in the Orange Walk District.

    Breaking Belize NewsPJ

    Another Castro Scandal: Cayo businessman claims Minister is covering up for son
    Amidst a wave of bad press for Minister Edmond Castro, first because of the revocation of his diplomatic and tourist visas a couple weeks ago and again this week because of a series of shenanigans involving his two sons, contraband and police; a Bullet […]

    6.8 Quake Hits Pacific Coast of Guatemala
    Photo: CONRED Guatemala This morning, a magnitude 6.8 Earthquake hit the pacific coast of Guatemala. Around 6:31 am, Guatemalans reported feeling the tremor. According to the Geological Survey, the quake was centered about 24 miles (38 kilometers) southwest of Puerto San Jose and 6 miles […]

    UB to Honour 530 Graduates during its June Commencement Exercises
    The University of Belize will honour 530 Graduates during its June Commencement Exercises to be held on Saturday, 24th June, 2017, and Sunday, 25th June, 2017 at the City of Belmopan and Punta Gorda Town respectively. The ceremony will commence at 10:00 am at […]

    “Police bad minded” says Castro brothers’ attorney
    Herbert Panton, attorney for Jafari and Wasani Castro, is insisting that the leaked information about their criminal charges were the work of a malicious police officer. Panton, a former magistrate, explained that the latest evidence, a court book log which showed that Jafari Castro […]

    Regular fuel goes up, other fuel go down by one cent
    By BBN Staff:Fuel prices have been adjusted several times since January 1, 2017. Effective today, regular fuel has increased by 31 cents per gallon. So instead of paying $9.87 per gallon, consumers will now pay $10.18. However, the cost of diesel and premium fuel will be reduced by […]

    Over 30 women detained in immigration crackdown
    Over 30 women have been detained following a joint operation between the Belize Police Department and Immigration officers. Authorities detained the women after conducting immigration checks at various bars in Stann Creek and Toledo, where many of the “workers” did not have the proper […]

    Blogs

    San Pedro Lobster fest Block Party 2017 will be held on June 24th, 2017
    The San Pedro Lobster Festival is an annual event that celebrates the reopening of lobster season in Belize. The first festival was held in 2007 with a week of nightly events leading up to one epic block party. Over the past 10 years the festival has evolved into a 10 day festival filled with over 20 great activities and incredible lobster themed foods! Catch us once again at the San Pedro Lobster Festival Block Party this Saturday June 24th,2017! As always it promises to be a great show! So bring your dancing feet and lets meet up at the Block Party! See you there! Each guest attending the Lobster Crawl is given a Lobster Festival “Passport”. In the passport there is a page for each of the day and night Lobster Festival events; for each page that guests get stamped by the participating venue they are entitled to a raffle ticket. Then on June 24th, guests bring their “Passport” to Central Park to the Lobster Festival’s official sponsor’s booth. One lucky participant will win a vacation package for 2 to attend the San Pedro Lobster Festival 2018!!

    Why visit the Marco gonzalez Mayan Site in San Pedro Ambergris Caye
    Marco Gonzalez Mayan site dates back from 100BC. It is located five miles south of San Pedro small area south of Laguna de Boca Chica. Today San Marco Gonzalez is recognized from visitors around the world and on an 8 acres on a small area of elevated terrain. Over 2,000 years ago it could have been more noticeable from the evidence of the Maya that came to the island. Their are 19 Maya sites that are recognized in San Pedro Ambergris Caye but no dedicated attempts had been made to preserve any of them. Their the water rises approximately 2 feet and is surrounded of swamp here in Marco Gonzalez site.. to learn more visit : www.marcogonzalezmayasite.com On Saturday June 21st the public of San Pedro where invited to join the San Marco Gonzalez Ancient Maya Ceremony at 10am. Through swamp, through jungle, through the palms view up above the site is very evidence of natural soil and from different kinds of animals and pottery on the land when you enter the site. each step is like going back in time. It all started when Jane Brown introduced herself thanking each and everyone that showed up.

    International Sourcesizz

    SPMAGTF-SC Marines hold opening ceremony for Honduras school projects
    U.S. Marines with Special Purpose Marine Air-Ground Task Force - Southern Command held an opening ceremony at Taufick Bendeck Elementary School in Trujillo, Honduras, June 15, to signify the start of several renovation projects in the local area. In addition to the infrastructure improvement projects in Trujillo as well as in Guatemala, the Marines with SPMAGTF-SC are conducting security cooperation training in Belize, Honduras, Guatemala and El Salvador, and, should the need arise, are on standby for disaster relief efforts in the region at the request of the host governments.

    CATS program to protect Caribbean ecosystems
    The Caribbean Public Health Agency (CARPHA) is aiming to reduce pollution and restore the health of Caribbean ecosystems, under the Caribbean Aqua Terrestrial Solutions (CATS) Program. The program focuses on managing natural resources and building resilience to climate change. Lyndon Robertson, Head of CARPHA’s Environmental Health Department provided insight into the CATS program. “The CATS program is an initiative of the Federal Republic of Germany and the CARICOM Secretariat. It focuses on the management of natural resources and building resilience to climate change. It was conceptualized in 2012 and started in 2013 as two components. Component one looked at adaptation to climate change and agriculture in rural economies, and component two focused on the conservation of coastal resources and bio-diversity.”

    Mingo teacher joins Belize mission trip
    This summer, long time Mingo County educator, Theresa Hanshaw will return to the impoverished country of Belize with the mission group Pathlight International to train teachers, raise the level of education, and ultimately, work toward overcoming poverty while incorporating the teachings of Christianity. Hanshaw, who has experience in both teaching and administration, will return once again to Belize this July to train Belizean teachers that work with impoverished students. Another focus of the trip will be integrating Christian principles into the training. Hanshaw explained this to the Williamson Daily News stating, “I will also be integrating the Bible.

    Videos

  • Belize Cultural Celebrations Vol. 3: Christmas Bram - A Kriol Christmas, 16min. This educational video is the third in a series of documentary videos and accompanying posters which highlights Belize's Cultural Celebrations, and forms part of a broader initiative to implement the UNESCO 2003 Convention for Safeguarding of the Intangible Cultural Heritage of Belize. The documentary presents the history and origins of the Christmas Bram, as well as descriptions of the Bram as it is currently practiced. It includes interviews with community elders, musicians, dancers, and cultural resource persons, along with the sound of the brokdong music.

  • Spanish Recording Belize 2017, 16min.

  • THE NORTH’S BRIGHTEST STUDENTS AWARDED FOR THEIR EXCEPTIONAL PERFORMANCE IN THE PRIMARY SCHOOL EXAMI, 7min.

  • Toledo Residents Get Solar Lights, 4.5min. The Grid Earth Project is a charity launched in 2008 by couple Jack and Audrey Cochran, members of Rotary District 5870 in Texas. The goal of the Project is to provide solar powered lights to communities living without electricity. We spoke to the Cochrans who were recently in the Toledo District for their annual distribution.

  • Stimulationg National Development, 4.5min. Belize Electricity Limited is committed to its Mission "to provide reliable electricity at the lowest sustainable cost, stimulate national development and improve the quality of life in Belize.

  • My Travels - Belize, 4min. So this is my follow up video to an absolutely amazing engagement/engagement location in Santorini. I was fortunate enough to marry my soul mate/best friend in Belize! This is an awesome place that I can not wait to go back to in the future!

  • CSMA Mission Trip to Belize 2017, 7min. Christian Sports Medicine Alliance mission trip in Belize.

  • 10 days in San Pedro, Belize, 4min. thank you San Pedro, you will always have a place in my heart.

  • Summer 2017 Belize, 3min.

    June 22, 2017


    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, and other specials


    The San Pedro Sun

    Lead changes in second week of Belikin National 8-Ball Pool Tournament
    The Belikin National 8-Ball Pool Tournament continues. Friday, June 16th and Saturday, June 17th saw four action-packed games, as eight teams defended their standings in the second week of the competition. Team Twinkle Twinkle Little Stars had been leading but after a fall to Team Legends, they are now in second place, along with Rack Dawgs. Team Amigos now lead the tournament with a comfortable score of 31. Games continue this weekend at Barrel Bar, beginning at 6PM on both Friday and Saturday.

    SPTC’s Five-a-side Football nearing playoffs
    After six weeks of action-packed games held, the San Pedro Town Council’s (SPTC) Five-a-side Football Tournament is nearing its playoffs. So far, four male teams have qualified: Rough & Tough, Jokers FC, Los Catrachos, and Terror Squad. This past week’s games took place on Wednesday, June 14th to Saturday, June 17th, in the Under-15, Under-13, and male division. As usual, large crowds came out to the Honorable Louis Sylvestre Sporting Complex to support their favorite players and teams. Games continue this week, starting on Wednesday, June 21st at the Honorable Louis Sylvestre Sporting Complex, starting at 7PM.

    SP Police Officers Behind Bars after Robbing a Tourist at Gunpoint
    On Thursday night, June 15th, while smoking a cigarette with a new acquaintance outside of a popular downtown bar and restaurant, Timothy Braun, a 28 year-old tourist from Wisconsin USA, was apprehended by three San Pedro police officers. The officers, who were on a golf cart and dressed in uniform, accused him of smoking marijuana. Braun informed the officers that he was smoking tobacco, but was promptly told they were taking him in for smoking weed. He was handcuffed behind his back and placed on the back seat of the golf cart. According to Braun, the officers drove him to a dark area along the Boca del Rio River just before reaching the Sir Barry Bowen Bridge.

    Public Service Officers recognized in Ambergris Caye
    In commemoration of the upcoming United Nations’ Public Service Day, scheduled for Friday, June 23rd, several public officers on Ambergris Caye were treated to a social evening on Saturday, June 17th at the Great House in Mahogany Bay Village. Outstanding public officers who have been devoted to the government for 20 years or more were recognized, including non-governmental island residents who in one way or another have tremendously contributed to the island community. The special event was filled with music, great food, refreshments and fabulous giveaways via raffles held throughout the night.

    Team Catrachos takes first place in SPTC Father’s Day Football Marathon
    The San Pedro Town Council along with the San Pedro Sports Committee hosted a fun filled Father’s Day football marathon on Sunday, June 18th at the Ambergris Stadium. The marathon was the first of its kind, and despite the gloomy weather, a total of six teams, male and female, along with dedicated football fans, showed up. Participating in the male division were, Catrachos, United F.C, Joker F.C and Costa Boys, while the female teams were, Island Strikers, and San Pedro High School.

    Ambergris Today

    Open Day At The San Pedro Police Station
    The San Pedro Police Department held its “Open Day Fair” today, June 21, to educate the community about the different departments and their regulations. They spoke about the Family and Violence Unit; how family problems are dealt with and what determines the consequences to wrong actions; what regulations are broken when violence takes place and what are the consequences of these actions. Police Officers also spoke about revenue collection and administration services. They took the time to explain how information is gathered when an incident occurs and what information can and cannot be shared with the public. The fair was organized to educate the community and also create a closer relationship between residents and police officers.

    Police Week Kicked Off In San Pedro
    This week the Police Departments all over Belize are celebrating Police Week. In the best of their abilities to give back to their communities and surpass the inclement weather, Police Officers have taken time off their busy schedules. The San Pedro Police Department has organized a full week of events to give back to the island community. On Monday, June 19, a clean up campaign and painting project at Boca Del Rio Park was held. The officers worked on beautifying the public bathrooms at the park that were ruined with graffiti.

    Misc Belizean Sources

    mzz

    Interested in Opportunities in Belize – Apply for the Diaspora Look See Visits 2017
    The International Organization for Migration (IOM) is implementing its ‘Look See Visits 2017’ in Belize, which seeks to engage the Belizean Diaspora, interested in capitalizing on investment opportunities in Belize. One key strategy of the project’s delivery, is the encouragement of diaspora entrepreneur to pay a confirmative visit to Belize. The aim of this strategy is to generate business interest and confidence, which seeks to result in investments in new and innovative business initiatives. This initiative is being done through the Effective and Sustainable Diaspora Engagement for Development in the Caribbean (ESDEDC) project which is designed to contribute to the region’s economy by providing and giving impetus to socio – economic programs and initiatives. It is envisaged that such programs and initiatives will generate a variety of economic alternatives and employment for low-income communities in Belize.

    Public Service Day at the Belmopan Comprehensive High School
    The Institute of Archaeology along with the Institute for Social & Cultural Research and the National Institute of Culture and History were present at Public Service Day at the Belmopan Comprehensive High School compound. Come visit us, play games and learn about fascinating Belizean cultures.

    Lobster Fest Weekend Beach Party @ Secret Paradise Beach Bar
    Sunday, June 25th. Bar opens around 9:30 and band will be there for the day until like 5:30 ish pm...dont miss out.

    Letter: Response to Belizean Citizens Abroad
    By Wellington C. Ramos. Dear President Belizeans Abroad Mr Mario Lara, Belizean Organizations, Professor Williams, Ms Muriel Laing-Arthurs, Belizeans living in Belize and all Belizeans living abroad, I am pleased to announce that younger Belizeans in the United States are taking up the struggle to seek the rights for Belizean citizens abroad. However, I'm concerned about the ways and methods that are being used to get the two major political parties, namely, UDP and PUP to act on our behalf. I have come to the conclusion, that these two major political parties are afraid of the Belizeans who live in the United States and will not do anything to grant us our basic fundamental constitutional rights.

    Sharks are worth more alive than dead!
    These juveniles were documented at a fish market in Belize City getting prepped for retail to local restaurants for popular dishes like panades. Alternatives exist! As keystone species, sharks help to maintain the health of the entire ecosystem. Sustainability must drive managment to protect fishing livelihoods.

    Police Week Open day at the Queen Street Police station
    We had a wild day sharing information about our work with many students. Here are some highlights of Police Week Open day at the Queen Street Police station where approximately 450 students visited the booths! A great day sharing with the students the work of the Belize Audubon Society.

    Termite inventory was a success!
    To our surprise we ended up collecting in 2 weeks twice more termite samples, than it was ever done in Belize. So, that is a major leap in learning about those fascinating creatures. Next step will be creating educational materials, creating hands-on activities and share it all with the primary school children. Final 2 days- cleaning all the 400 vials of collected termites, labeling, creating reference collection. Angela- our termite specialist - finished it all with the great mini workshop for us and even tested our knowledge- it was fun!

    UB to Honour 530 Graduates during its June Commencement Exercises
    The University of Belize will honour 530 Graduates during its June Commencement Exercises to be held on Saturday, 24th June, 2017, and Sunday, 25th June, 2017 at the City of Belmopan and Punta Gorda Town respectively. The ceremony will commence at 10:00 am at the UB Gymnasium in Belmopan while in Punta Gorda it will commence at 2:00 p.m. at the Toledo Community College Auditorium. The keynote address in Belmopan will be delivered by the Mayor of Belize City, His Worship, Mr. Darrell Bradley. Belizean Educator Dr. Elizabeth Cardenas will be the keynote speaker for the Punta Gorda ceremony.

    "Police Week 2017 ." in full swing at the Raccoon Street Compound
    d. "The Police and The Community Working in Partnership for a Safer Belize."

    Producing bokashi
    Farmers in the Vaca plateau are helping produce bokashi (organic fertilizer) to use on their crops thereby reducing the use of synthetic fertilizers. We are thankful to the British Embassy and the US Fish and Wildlife Service for their support.

    Panerrifix Steel Band at San Pedro Lobsterfest
    Catch us once again at the San Pedro Lobster Festival Block Party this Saturday June 24th,2017! As always it promises to be a great show! So bring your dancing feet and lets meet up at the Block Party! See you there!

    3rd Annual Soca Fete 2017
    Official ribbon cutting of Slingshot Signs and Steve Perera donation to the city of Belize. With Mayor Darrel Bradley, City Admin Candice Miller, Councilor Philip Willoughby, and our esteemed attorney Steve Perera.

    Official ribbon cutting of Slingshot Signs and Steve Perera donation to the city of Belize
    With Mayor Darrel Bradley, City Admin Candice Miller, Councilor Philip Willoughby, and our esteemed attorney Steve Perera.

    San Pedro Lobster Fest Block Party - Saturday, June 25th! PARTY LIKE A LOB-STAR!

    Belize Sugar Industries Reaffirms Environmental Commitment
    The health of New River is very concerning to everyone in the north of Belize, including to our team at BSI. As a socially and environmentally responsible company, we have an established, comprehensive and transparent process to actively test, monitor and report water samples from New River. We work in collaboration with DOE and remain compliant to our Environmental Compliance Plan (ECP) requirements relating to the New River. At BSI, we are proud to proactively uphold our value of care for the environment and conduct our business in a manner that is sustainable and environmentally responsible.

    Corozal Public Library - Police Week
    It was a long day indeed but a successful and educational one. Thanks to the Community Police Staff of the Corozal Police Department for inviting us to display our Library booth at their open day. Together, we are happy to celebrate Police Week under the theme "THE POLICE AND THE COMMUNITY WORKING IN PARTNERSHIP FOR A SAFER BELIZE"

    The organization "Toone Masehualoon" recognized as an NGO
    Officially recognized as a group focused on its objectives. The organization "Toone Masehualoon" is an NGO (Non Governmental Organization) in Belize Central America. It is organized to preserve and to promote the rich maya culture in northern Belize by focusing on the rescue and preservation of the Yucatec Maya language, the maya culture, spirituality, traditions, dances and ancient story telling.

    Latin America Clothing Drive
    The Rotaract Club of Benque distributed clothes to needy people in Arenal. "La actividad Vistiendo Latinoamérica nace después de una exitosa jornada durante la semana Rotaract 2015, en la cual se hizo entrega de algo de ropa a personas necesitadas. Se decidió hacer la actividad mucho más grande. Gracias a un generoso patrocinador, conseguimos donación de múltiples pacas de ropa, las cuales resultaron ser hasta más de lo que nosotros mismos podíamos entregar. La actividad creció al decidir coordinar una entrega masiva de ropa a personas desafortunadas a nivel Latinoamérica, con muchos contactos de otros clubes Rotaract que hicimos durante la Semana Mundial. Tuvimos la participación de 22 clubes Rotaract a nivel latinamericano. Más de 1,500 personas beneficiadas en Honduras y más de 3,400 beneficiadas por los demás clubes a nivel latinoamericano."

    Caribbean Countries Convene in Belize for Green Climate Fund
    "Representatives from countries in the Caribbean region are in Belize for a four-day Green Climate Fund (GCF) regional meeting to advance collaboration with the Fund and accelerate access to its resources. Organized in partnership with the Government of Belize and the Caribbean Community Climate Change Centre (CCCCC), the GCF Structured Dialogue with the Caribbean kicked off on 19 June with a high-level session to put a spotlight on countries’ climate action plans with the Fund.

    Today, the U.S. Embassy held a Flag Raising Ceremony in Belmopan in honor of LGBTI Pride Month and the LGBTI community
    The flag will be proudly flown at the Embassy until the end of June. This is our second consecutive year raising the flag to show the Embassy’s continued support and commitment to the LGBTI rights and the LGBTI community. The ceremony featured the following speakers: Chargé d’Affaires, a.i. of the U.S. Embassy Ms. Adrienne Galanek and Executive Director of UNIBAM, Mr. Caleb Orozco. Also present at the event were members of the civil society, People’s United Party Senator and Diplomatic Corps. LGBTI pride month celebrates the impact that lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender and intersex individuals, friends and communities have today and have had throughout history on a local, national, and global scale. LGBTI Pride Month is celebrated each year in June to honor the 1969 Stonewall riots in Greenwich Village in New York which served as a tipping point for the gay liberation movement in the United States. The last Sunday in June was initially celebrated as “Gay Pride Day,” but in major cities across the United States, the “day” soon grew to encompass a month-long series of events.

    This Day In History
    June 21st, 1819 .. The Criminal Court of Belize established by Act of Parliament.

    Channel 7

    A Pedophile Principal?
    The staff, students and parent community of the Monsignor Roman Catholic Primary School in Valley of Peace are on edge after the Principal Johnny Valencia was charged with sexual assault last Thursday. The case involves a 13 year old girl who alleges that the Principal touched her inappropriately. But what is disturbing is that another student has reported that she too was assaulted by Principal Valencia. It is a troubling and very sensitive case and Courtney Weatherburne spoke to both girls and Principal Valencia yesterday in Valley of Peace. To protect the identity of the children we interviewed them off camera and distorted their voices as well as the voices of their parents. Valencia also asked to appear off camera. Here is that comprehensive story with both sides of these allegations.

    Education Minister Says It Won't Be Tolerated
    We also asked Education Minster Patrick Faber to comment of this case. He didn't have any details but he stressed that the Ministry will not tolerate it. Hon. Patrick Faber - Minister of Education: "I have not received an official report of that so I don't feel comfortable commenting on it but in so far as you want to comment on our position on any kind of abuse, including the use of corporal punishment; I've gone on record recently reminding people that our ministry has a zero tolerance for corporal punishment in our schools and it has a zero tolerance for sexual abuse especially in our schools. If it is that there are culprits who are found guilty of this kind of practice, whoever it is around our school community that the ministry will not tolerate that and in fact we will move with whatever swiftness we can find, we can muster and also whatever strength we can muster to deal with those who are guilty."

    Ady Pacheco and Citizen Kim
    The Weekly Senate Select Hearings on Immigration continued today, the Senate Select Committee called Immigration Officer Ady Pacheco to testify. Her name started getting called as far back as October 2013, when the Won Hong Kim passport scandal broke. She was one of the officers who handled the Won Hong Kim file, which led to a fraudulent passport being issued for this South Korean fugitive. She has been mentioned dozens of times in the Auditor General's Report on Immigration, and she was even mentioned in connection with the fraudulent documents granted to the Mexican-American fugitive David Nanes-Schnizter.

    Ady Felt Intimidated By Ministers
    That conversation on Won Hong Kim led the Senate to start questioning Ady Pacheco on why she accepted the nationality file for the South Korean fugitive, knowing that it was incomplete, and that it should not have been processed. And that takes us to those famous letters of recommendation from Ministers of government. Today, Pacheco suggested that she felt coerced into doing certain things. The Audit team had already asked her about the incomplete Citizen Kim file that Penner gave to her. According to her, Penner allegedly promised to bring in the rest of the supporting documents at later date, and that she felt intimidated by Penner, who was the Minister in charge at the time.

    Pacheco And The Role She Played in Nanes - Schnitzer
    So, while Pacheco claims that she felt pressured in that case, her former superior, Maria Marin, investigated her for the David Nanes-Schitzer scandal, concluding that she played a key role the production of fraudulent immigration documents. He's the Mexican-American fugitive who fled to Belize and lived here under an alibi for 3 years after he was named in a multi-million dollar Ponzi scheme. But, he didn't have to hide because either he or his associates managed to get around the corrupt Immigration Department to get Nationality and passport, becoming the imaginary Belizean, "David Banes."

    Chebat and Pacheco Spar
    That wasn't the only time that Chebat challenged Pacheco's story. There were a few other instances where he appeared to downright disbelieve her answers. Here are a few other instances in the Senate Hearing, when the two became adversaries: Michel Chebat - PUP Senator: "Were you ever offered any money for the processing of Wong Hong Kim nationality?" Ady Pacheco - Named in Auditor General's Report: "No sir." Michel Chebat: "Minister Penner never offered you any money?" Ady Pacheco: "No sir." Michel Chebat: "Neither did Mr. Wade?" Ady Pacheco: "No sir."

    City Slaying At 6:30
    There was a murder in Belize City about forty minutes ago at 6:25. It happened on King Street where a person was shot and killed in front of Teddy's Store. He was shot in front of the door of Teddy's and that's where the body remains at this time. Police say the person is unknown to them. Our team is on the scene, and we'll have video for you later on in the news.

    MIT Makes Major Weed Bust in Cattle Truck
    Today in Western Belize the Police Mobile Interdiction Team made a large marijuana bust - totaling about 70 pounds. And while the weight is significant, what's more interesting is how the drugs were being smuggled. 37 parcels of weed were neatly packed into a hidden compartment in the bed of a cattle truck. The MIT made the bust near Ontario village - and Superintendent Leslie Wade says they had to take the truck back to their base to find the hidden compartment:

    Cops Caught For Extorting Tourist In San Pedro
    San Pedro police were quick to criminally charge two of their own - after a tourist complained of callous cop extortion. 28 year old American Timothy Braun alleged that on the night of Thursday, June 15th, he was in downtown San Pedro, cooling off with a new friend, and smoking a cigarette. That's when three uniformed police officers pulled up in a golf cart and accused him of smoking marijuana. He protested and said it was only tobacco, but the cuffed him, slapped him unto the golf cart and told him they were taking him into the station. But instead, Braun alleges that the cops drove him to a dark area along the Boca del Rio River. That's where they took off his cuffs, and took him to the water's edge, where one of the officers allegedly put a gun to his head and told him that if he did not give them all of his money, he would end up in the river.

    US Hoists Rainbow Flag
    One year ago, the US Embassy in Belmopan raised the Rainbow or Gay Pride flag on the Embassy Compound. At the time, there was a great big uproar and outrage by the Christian right and many regular folks who felt it offended Belizean cultural norms. Today, one year later - in observance of Gay Pride Month, the Embassy did the same - and it barely even made a blip on the radar screen of current affairs. Now, you can view that either as a sign of progress towards tolerance, or a general state of apathy, but to hear Caleb Orozco tell it, it's a step forward. Here's our report on today's event:

    Mixing Morality and Sexual Politics
    Orozco and Senator Woods also had some choice remarks for the Church-State Morality Commission. As we told you the church side of that group has come to a deadlock - because the Anglican and Methodist Bishops pulled out of the group. Orozco says that is the least of the faults with this commission - and Senator Woods backed him up: Caleb Orozco - LGBTI: "The problem with the morality commission or as Minister Faber say it the church state commission is that it not only legitimize extremism, it also excluded the marginalized group in that discussion and did not uphold the values of natural justice which require government arbitrate the issue by bringing both parties at the table and what has happened to the commission is that it shows that as Belizeans we are not a society of extreme thinkers, we are open to constructive and logical responses and that is the way we move forward."

    GOB Says No To IMF Tax Hike
    Last week Friday, the IMF issued the customary statement after its Article IV consultation. Noting the projection for lackluster growth and stifling debt, the IMF advised the government to increase the raise the GST rate from 12.5% to 15%, along with limiting zero-rated items and cutting public sector jobs. Today, we spoke to Deputy Prime Minister Patrick Faber about the report, and whether we should expect to see an increase in taxes anytime soon... Hon. Patrick Faber - Deputy Prime Minister: "Well you will always find that these recommendations coming from the IMF are stern and stiff. Traditionally under the leadership of our current prime minister, we have tried to address the problems in our economy by not always following the prescription from the IMF. Those are often very stern and in fact we have had occasion in the past to learn very difficult lessons politically from following tee tie toe what the IMF recommends."

    Deputy Party Leader Faber Says UDP Ready
    Faber also spoke to us about next year's municipal elections. is the deadline for potential candidates to submit their names to the UDP secretariat, so we asked the Deputy Party Leader about the candidate selection process, and his hopes for the upcoming elections... Hon. Patrick Faber - Deputy Prime Minister "We invite people who are interested all over the country for the - I think we have 9 municipal bodies for them to put in their applications. Once those applications are in there is a vetting process that is a part of the way we operate in the UDP, there is a nomination's committee that will look to all of these applications to make sure that those who have applied are suitable candidates and by suitable we mean they meet the criteria of us in the UDP who believe in putting forward righteous candidates and then once those candidates are accepted, the party will move to hold its conventions."

    Councillor Dion Says Fourth Time's The Charm
    Dion Leslie is one of the eight UDP Councillors who submitted his name today. even though it's his fourth go-around, he told us that it still feels like the first time: Dion Leslie - UDP City Councillor: "Well 8 of the 10 incumbent councillors, we had to hand our application forms formally to the secretariat basically showing our intention to contest the 2018 municipal elections again for Belize City. 8 of us went but we're still 10 strong, I know for reasons Alifa was not able to make it and Phillip Willoughby was not able to make it this morning as well but we still went ahead and we did it. The deadline is next week Friday, the deadline for everyone to submit their applications if they intend to seek office or intend to run or intend to contest a seat in the convention but this morning all of us we went in this morning to officially hand in and to show our intent to run again."

    Faber Comments On Castro's
    Minister of Transport and NEMO Edmund Castro's sons, Wasani and Jafari, have dominated the news this past week. This is after an eventfulFriday when they were involved in multiple criminal allegations. In just 16 hours, the Castro boys were allegedly caught driving without driver's licenses in an unlicensed vehicle, allegedly threatening and assaulting the officer that busted them, then allegedly getting beat up by police, then allegedly attacking another officer in a police station, and, then, 16 hours later, caught with 89 cases of contraband beer in Orange Walk. Since then, the Castros have agreed to settle the contraband matter out of court, and the officer that busted them in the unlicensed vehicle has agreed not to pursue the charges because he instigated the situation.

    Awarding PSE Excellence
    The official results of this years Primary School Examination came out earlier this month. And while there wasn't much noticeable improvement from last year's failing performance, as always there were those hundreds of bright stars - brilliant students who excel. Today, an award ceremony was held to honor this year's Top 25 performers. We spoke to Minister of Education Patrick Faber about the event, and how the Ministry plans on working with schools to improve the performance of our students...

    OAS 47th Over
    The 47th Organization of American States General Assembly concluded today. Minister of Foreign Affairs Wilfred Elrington joined dignitaries from 34 other member nations in Cancun, Mexico to discuss necessary methods for developing the region, and establishing strategies to address issues concerning human rights and citizen security. This year's General Assembly was held under the theme "Strengthening Dialogue and Concentration for Prosperity".

    They Got Gotoy
    Today 42 year old Michelle Gotoy appeared in the Magistrate's Court where she was charged with drug trafficking. In December of last year, Gotoy was allegedly standing on on the corner of Hondo and Sibun Streets in Belize City when a police mobile patrol stopped and asked her if she had anything to declare. Gotoy handed over some cannabis she was keeping in her purse, but the cops noticed a transparent plastic bag in her other hand. When they checked the bag, police found 15 aluminum foil wrapped parcels containing crack cocaine. Together the parcels weighed about half an ounce.

    Police Hold Open Days Countrywide
    Police formations across the country held open days today. It's a huge undertaking where scores of police officers organize the exhibits and invite partner agencies to join them. And they do it all in their spare time - for which they don't get paid overtime. Press officer Douglas Hyde told us more:

    King Street Killing Confirmed
    And while the police are putting their very best foot forward this week, the criminals aren't cooperating. There was a murder in the downtown area of Belize city a little over an hour ago. Police just moved the body of a victim who was shot right in front of Teddy's Store at about 20 minutes after 6:00. He died on the spot. The scenes of crime team spent over an hour processing the scene. Police have not released his name yet, but we'll have full details tomorrow.

    Channel 5

    Breaking: Murder on King Street in downtown Belize City
    In Breaking News, police have confirmed that there was a murder a short while ago on King Street in downtown Belize City, in front of Teddy’s Music Shop. The name [...]

    Penner gave me Kim documents in hand, says clerk Ady Pacheco at Senate
    The senate hearings got underway in Belmopan; the sole witness at the Senate Special Select Committee was Immigration Officer Ady Pacheco whose name appears frequently in the Auditor General’s report. [...]

    Ex-Minister got back same incomplete Won Hong Kim file
    Pacheco also fingered her boss, Officer in Charge of the Nationality and Services Section of the Department Gordon Wade, saying he was in regular contact with Ministers, secretaries and drivers [...]

    No checks or cheques for Kim affair
    At the hearing, Pacheco denied outright that she was ever paid for her role in reviewing the nationality documents by Minister Penner or Gordon Wade, and had nothing to do [...]

    I did not know Nanes was illegal, Pacheco tells Senate
    A few weeks ago we told you of the confidential report of the Immigration Department and former acting Director Maria Marin on the David Nanes Schnitzer affair. The Mexican-American faces [...]

    Why Peter Dahlstrom is a Belizean by marriage
    It had not been discussed at all at prior hearings, but Prime Minister Dean Barrow’s name does appear in the Auditor General’s Special Audit Report on Nationality as a referee [...]

    Swede qualified by Immigration interpretation
    Pacheco says the application went to Gordon Wade who made the notation that Dohlstrom was fit for Belizean nationality. It was settled policy – verbal, not written – that the [...]

    “Yellowman” not allowed to attend Senate Special Select Committee Hearings
    He remains Sergeant-At-Arms or Mace Bearer of the House of Representatives. But while the Senate Committee is meeting, Clerk of the National Assembly Eddie Webster announced today, Brian “Yellow Man” [...]

    The top students in P.S.E. honored
    The brightest students in the P.S.E were recognized today for academic excellence. Over seven thousand students sat the exam earlier this year, but hundreds of them failed the annual test. [...]

    Rogue San Pedro cops extorted, robbed tourist
    Even as they celebrate police week, two police officers in San Pedro were taken to court this afternoon on a slew of charges including theft and extortion. Police Corporal Denfield [...]

    Will accused businesswoman face lengthy jail sentence for drugs?
    A Belize City businesswoman was convicted this morning in the court room of Chief Magistrate, Anne Marie Smith for the drug trafficking of fourteen point six grams of crack cocaine [...]

    Caleb Orozco upbraids “Morality Commission”
    The recent fracture within the self-styled “Morality Commission” has seen the departure of Bishop Phillip Wright and Reverend Roosevelt Papouloute, two relatively powerful church leaders who sat on the government-helmed [...]

    P.U.P. Senator Valerie Woods says LGBT should have been included
    Also weighing in on the issue of the Morality Commission is Senator Valerie Woods.  The P.U.P. parliamentarian is a proponent for human rights, irrespective of existing differences.  She too describes [...]

    Human rights for all; LGBT Pride Week to mark historic court decision
    While the church has been a dominant force in opposing the L.G.B.T.I. movement in Belize, it has also been decried for not acknowledging the basic human rights that all members [...]

    Governing U.D.P. City Councilors to vie again for City Hall
    The Municipal Elections are coming up next year and the U.D.P. is getting in gear in Belize City where it has been controlling city hall since 2006. Today, majority of [...]

    Police show softer side with open day
    The Belize Police Department has been observing Police Week since Sunday. Activities have been planned for the entire week, some are internal and others involve the community. One of the [...]

    U.S. raises LGBT flag in Belmopan
    Tonight, the rainbow flag flies on the U.S. Embassy compound in Belmopan in commemoration of the L.G.B.T.I. community in the U.S. It was hoisted this morning for the second time [...]

    PlusTV

    Family of slain 16 year old protest in Cayo
    There was a small protest of the senseless murder of Amy Guerra and the vicious attack on Eliseo Bacab. Family members, friends, and concerned citizens gathered today to voice their heartbreak and their concern for the nation as it relates to senseless crimes and a lack of justice for the victims of...

    Drug bust on Norwegian huge; almost half a million dollars worth of cocaine
    Yesterday , Plus news broke the story of the huge drug bust aboard the Norwegian Cruise and the subsequent arrest of three cruise ship workers by Belize Police. The police have finally released official information on the matter, confirming our story. According to the police report, on Tuesday 13th ...

    Castro brothers’ charges prepared but not read?
    Yesterday, ASP Chester Williams told the media that despite a leaked police report to the media that two sons of Minister Castro were found speeding and accosted by cops, the police report was inaccurate. As we told you yesterday, the leaked police report indicated that 21 year old Jafari Castro an...

    Woman robbed in Belize City
    A business woman was robbed in Belize City on Sunday. 42-year-old Vilma Ritilia Chep, a Guatemalan businesswoman, was arriving at her home on Holy Emmanuel Street, Belize City sometime around 3:45 a.m. She reported to police that when she was almost home, she felt someone hold her around her neck an...

    Man drowns after crashing vehicle in Rio Hondo
    69 year old Froyland Peralta drowned yesterday in a freak accident in the Orange Walk district. According to reports, Peralta was at the unofficial border crossing in Santa Cruz Village. This is by the Rio Hondo across from Botes in Mexico. Peralta was by the riverside in his Ford Ranger pickup truc...

    6 persons detained for Orange Walk shooting
    Six persons have been detained for a shooting in Orange Walk. According to police reports, on Monday19th June, just before 9:30 that night, three male persons were sitting on the verandah of a residence on San Victor Street. According to one of the witnesses, a male person suddenly ran in front of ...

    Vehicle on fire at local Belmopan restaurant
    Belmopan police are investigating a case of suspected arson. On Monday June 19th at about 2 a.m., a loud bang was heard at Scotchies Restaurant and Bar located on the Hummingbird Highway in Belmopan. After checks were made, a 2002 white Mitsubishi Montero SUV was found engulfed in flames. Accordi...

    Belizean customs work with Mexican counterparts at old Bridge border crossing
    The Old Bridge between the Corozal Free Zone and Subtiniente Lopez , Mexico has remained closed to vehicular traffic since May 10th. Belizeans now use the new bridge, however, the old bridge was still being used by Mexicans who frequent the Free Zone and those referred to as “fayuqueros...

    Man pleads guilty to stabbing incident
    32 year old Danny Maskall has been remanded to Hattieville prison as he awaits sentencing. Today, he pleaded guilty to wounding Clive Sutherland during a stabbing incident on Partridge Street, Belize City. Sutherland was stabbed to the left side of the chest, let upper side of the back and right u...

    Malcolm Meyers guilty of shooting man in the leg
    25 year old Malcolm Myers was found guilty of “use of deadly mans of harm” for an incident in which he shot Trevor Yarde in his leg. His trial began today in the court room of Chief Magistrate Ann Marie Smith. Myers is accused of shooting 20 year old Belize City resident Trevor Yarde on Freetown...

    3 years for firearm offenses
    32 year old Jamaal Jackson has been sentenced to 3 years in prison for firearm and ammunition offenses. Six days ago, he was found guilty of the crimes and was on remand awaiting sentencing. Today, in the courtroom of Chief Magistrate, Anne Marie Smith, mitigation was heard on his behalf in court....

    Amy Guerrra drowned; alive when she was thrown into river
    The post mortem examination on the body of 16 year old Amy Guerra who was murdered in Santa Familia village has been concluded. According to the report, Amy died from drowning. What that means is after her neck was slit twice, she was still alive when she was thrown into the river. The medical offic...

    Bus operators fined for overcrowded buses
    The Department of Transport has taken nine bus drivers to court. On Friday June 16, in the Orange Walk Magistrate’s Court, the nine drivers pleaded guilty to the offences. Seven of them were charged for “carrying excessive passengers on a public service vehicle” while two were charged for “failure t...

    Orange Walk man freed of theft charge
    Juan Angel Munoz was freed f the charge of theft at the conclusion of his trial on Monday. The orange Walk resident was accused of stealing about one hundred and thirty-seven thousand dollars from his place of work, Caye Supplies of San Pedro. The period of time when the monies went missing was betw...

    No strain between Police and Customs
    In recent months, the media has reported on stories of police officers videoed as they packed police mobiles with contraband goods. We also saw footage of a high speed chase where cops were filmed fleeing from customs officers as they tried to smuggle a 40 pound bag of uncustomed clothes. Those vide...

    Breaking Belize NewsPJ

    Man gunned down on King Street
    An unidentified Belize City man was gunned down twenty minutes ago on King Street. All indications are that he had just purchased a music cd at Teddy’s music outlet when upon exiting someone opened fire on him. He was shot multiple times and died […]

    Ady Pacheco blames Gordon Wade for shady transaction
    Senior Immigration Officer, Ady Pacheco, today appeared before the Senate Select Committee. Pacheco was named by the Auditor General for her involvement in the shady issuance of a passport to South Korean Criminal, Won Hong Kim. She was also named for several other shady […]

    Police and Special Constable charged for extorting tourist
    According to reports from the San Pedro Sun, on the night of Thursday, June 15, a tourist was at a bar on the island when he was approached by three police officers from San Pedro. Timothy Braun reportedly contacted the editor of the San […]

    Yellow Man banned from Senate hearings
    Brian “Yellow Man” Audinette, the Sergeant of Arms for the National Assembly has been officially disallowed from attending the hearings of the Senate Select Committee. In a statement issued to the media today by the Clerk of the National Assembly, Eddie Webster, explained, Audinett’s behavior […]

    Former Cabinet Minister claims PUP and UDP gave away territory to Guatemala
    Former United Democratic Party (UDP) Minister Derek Aikman, who served under the Manuel Esquivel administration from 1984-1989, last week made a public revelation to the media claiming that key figures in the UDP and the People’s United Party (PUP) willingly ceded maritime territory to Guatemala […]

    Police Week activities continue
    This week is being celebrated across Belize as Police Week 2017. Police officers gathered on Sunday for mass in celebration of the beginning of Police Week. This year’s theme is: “The police and the community working in partnership for a safer Belize.” Commissioner of […]

    NICH hands over therapy dolls to the Department of Human Services
    The National Institute of Culture and History (NICH) through the Institute of Creative Arts (ICA) will be hosting a handing-over ceremony to the Department of Human Services at the Bliss Center at 1:30 p.m. tomorrow. Since 2013, Raquel Robles Pacheco has been visiting […]

    NICH announces documentary on ‘Kriol Christmas bram’
    The National Institute of Culture and History (NICH) through the Institute for Social and Cultural Research announces the production and launch of Volume 3 of the Belize Cultural Celebrations Series: Christmas Bram – A Kriol Christmas. The Bram was once widely celebrated in Kriol […]

    San Ignacio/ Santa Elena town councilor passes away
    A councilor from the San Ignacio/ Santa Elena Town board passed away last night. According to reports, David Morey was ill and was admitted to a hospital in Guatemala for one month. The town council and the family were doing fundraising to assist in […]

    Three men remanded for brutal murder of teen girl
    Sixteen-year-old Emy Guerra was brutally killed on Friday night in Santa Familia village. Guerra and her boyfriend Eliseo Bacab were hanging out at the football field in the village when they were attacked by three men. On Monday, Steven Manzanero, Reginald Patt and Armando […]

    Climate Change conference held in Placencia
    Yesterday various Government officials met in Placencia for the Green Climate Fund conference. The United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change established the fund to assist countries like Belize to adapt and mitigate practices in light of climate change. Ambassador Yvonne Hyde, National Designated Authority […]

    BCCI & COTA form strategic alliance
    The Belize Chamber of Commerce and Industry (BCCI) and Chamber of the Americas (COTA) will form a strategic alliance to foster connections between the two organizations to assist members in increasing their business opportunities in Belize and across the Americas. Plans include hosting the […]

    Blogs

    A Helicopter Trip Along the Reef From Ambergris Caye to Placencia, Belize
    A few weeks ago, I received a message from a reader that asked “Would you like to take a helicopter to Placencia?” And…and…and…OBVIOUSLY the answer was YES! It was the start of 24 AMAZING HOURS – an hour long helicopter ride down to Placencia (riding co-pilot), overnight at Francis Ford Coppola’s Turtle Inn and the ride back. There is no way I can fit all of these pictures or experiences in just one post so let me start with the ride with Astrum Helicopters along Belize’s Barrier reef.

    TOONE Masehualoon is now recognized by the Government
    The organization Toone Masehualoon is a NGO (nongovernmental organization) in Belize Central America. It is organized to preserve and to promote the rich maya culture in northern Belize by focusing on the rescue and preservation of the Yucatec Maya language, the maya culture, spirituality, traditions, dances and ancient story telling. The aim is to recapture and embrace once more the pride and distinction of being of maya heritage and ancestry in beautiful Belize. Directors of this group are: President: Ms Adela Pederson, Vice President Mr Roy Rodriguez Sr., Treasurer: Mr Faustino Yam and Secretary: Mr Adan Palomo. Active members: Dr Barbosa, Michelle Guevara and Aracelie. Thank you for your dedication and support to this vital cause. Yuumbotic.

    Come visit Belize: BelizeIt!
    Because Belize uses English as its official language, the country makes an ideal first foray into Central America. It is a microcosm of the entire region, with Mayan ruins, unspoiled tropical forests containing a wealth of birdlife and white-sand beaches protected by the second-longest coral reef in the world. It would certainly be possible to have a delightful vacation focusing on just one of these attractions, but since Belize is so compact and travel within the country is simple and relatively inexpensive, I recommend staying in three or four contrasting resorts.

    Finding the Humor in Weather
    Yup, it’s that time of year again. Rainy season officially started June 1st and it didn’t take long for it to roll on in with a weather disturbance that picked up in the Caribbean. Predictions were forecast at 90% of becoming a tropical depression. The general consensus was this was noting to worry about, that we were definitely guaranteed to get severely wet and we have been. Thankfully not all day every day. Homeowners and renters with cisterns are relieved to get them finally filled back up. Drivers are not quite as happy. Everyone that was wishing for water to keep the dust down on back road detours due to construction is now faced with potholed mud bogs. Island life – for better or for worse we get both extremes often. You definitely need a good sense of humor to weather rainy season in Belize and some Useful Waterproof Travel Gear.

    International Sourcesizz

    At the End of the Horizon
    Beyond the Horizon 2017 drew to a close on the sun-drenched parade field of Price Barracks, Belize, June 15, 2017. The Beyond the Horizon 2017 task force, U.S. Embassy and the Government of Belize participated in a ceremony that highlighted the benefits of the partnership between the U.S. and Belizean governments. High-level representatives from the Government of Belize, the Ministry of Defence and The Belize Defence Force showed their appreciation for the U.S. and Belizean military engineers and medical personnel during the ceremony. Prominent guests and speakers included Governor General of Belize, H.E. Sir Colville Young; Chargé d’Affaires a.i. of the U.S. Embassy, Adrienne Galanek; Deputy Commander of Army South, Brig. Gen. Richard Torres; Commander of the BDF, Brig. Gen. David Jones, and the Minister of Defence, Hon. John Saldivar.

    North Reading Resident To Study Jaguars In Belize
    North Reading's Dustin Goddard, a new master's student in the Global Field Program (GFP) offered through Miami University's Project Dragonfly, will travel to Belize in July 2017 to study coral reefs, manatees, howler monkeys, jaguars and other wildlife while learning the methods communities are using to sustain them. Since the program began 13 years ago, Project Dragonfly's Earth Expeditions graduate courses have engaged more than 2,000 people in firsthand educational and scientific research at critical conservation field sites in Africa, Australia, Asia and the Americas. Dragonfly is located in the department of biology at Miami University, a state university in Oxford, Ohio. Miami was established in 1809 and is listed as one of the eight original Public Ivies.

    The world needs wildlife tourism. But that won't work without wildlife
    Habitat loss, pollution, climate change, over-exploitation and poaching are all threatening a lifeline for local communities. Wildlife-based tourism is growing rapidly worldwide as the number of tourists continues to grow and as we, as travellers, seek out new and more enriching personal experiences with local cultures and wildlife. This is what inspired me to take six months unpaid leave from the grind of legal practice many years ago and backpack around South America with my little sister. Experiencing the natural beauty of places like the Amazon rainforest, Iguazú Falls and Machu Picchu and the local people fighting to protect them was life-changing. The UN World Tourism Organisation estimates that 7% of world tourism relates to wildlife tourism, growing annually at about 3%, and much higher in some places, like our Unesco world heritage sites. A WWF report shows that 93% of all natural heritage sites support recreation and tourism and 91% of them provide jobs. In Belize, more than 50% of the population are said to be supported by income generated through reef-related tourism and fisheries.

    Mexico just legalized medical marijuana
    Mexican President Enrique Peña Nieto signed a decree this week legalizing medical marijuana. The measure also classified the psychoactive ingredient in the drug as “therapeutic.” The new policy isn't exactly opening the door for medical marijuana dispensaries on every corner. Instead it calls on the Ministry of Health to draft and implement regulations and public policies regulating “the medicinal use of pharmacological derivatives of cannabis sativa, indica and Americana or marijuana, including tetrahydrocannabinol.” It also tasks the ministry with developing a research program to study the drug's impact before creating broader policies. The measure had broad support from Mexico's Senate and Lower House of Congress, where it passed 347-7 in April. Recreational marijuana is still broadly prohibited in Mexico.

    Princes William and Harry present Diana Awards to young people
    Elsia Pop, 17, from Belize, made it her mission to keep traditions of the Mayan people alive. Twenty young people have been given a new award set up in memory of Diana, Princess of Wales. The Duke of Cambridge and Prince Harry presented the Legacy Awards to children and teenagers for creating positive social change in their communities. The recipients came from the UK, United States, Canada, India, Belize and the United Arab Emirates.

    Videos

  • Senate Select Committee Hearing, 1hr25min.

  • Carribean Villas Belize 2015, 1.5min. Our trip to Belize on AMbergris Caye 2015.

  • Belize Cultural Celebrations Vol. 3: Christmas Bram - A Kriol Christmas, 16min. This educational video is the third in a series of documentary videos and accompanying posters which highlights Belize's Cultural Celebrations, and forms part of a broader initiative to implement the UNESCO 2003 Convention for Safeguarding of the Intangible Cultural Heritage of Belize. The documentary presents the history and origins of the Christmas Bram, as well as descriptions of the Bram as it is currently practiced. It includes interviews with community elders, musicians, dancers, and cultural resource persons, along with the sound of the brokdong music.

  • Max international Diamond Retreat Belize 2017, 3min. Celebrating our Max Diamond Associates with an all inclusive Diamond Retreat in Belize, June 2017.

  • BELTRAIDE Business and Finance Development Training Schedule, The Belize Trade and Development Service (BELTRAIDE) and the Multilateral Investment Fund (MIF) of the Inter-American Development Bank (IDB) Group have entered into a Technical Cooperation Agreement to execute an eighteen (18) month project entitled: Expanding SME Access to Finance and Business Development Services in Belize. Under the expansion project the Small Business Development Centre Belize, SBDCBelize, a unit of BELTRAIDE will be executing a series of finance and business development trainings to broaden the coverage and outreach of SBDCBelize's services. The 8 module training will be executed in the 7 districts of Belize FREE OF COST.

  • Police Check Point Talk Show June 20, 56min.

  • BSI ASR CROP REVIEW 2017 - WEEK 28, 3min.

  • FRIENDS OF THE NEW RIVER HOLD IMPORTANT FORUM, 8.5min.

  • BHSA WITNESSES THE INAUGURATION OF A NEW SCHOOL BUILDING, 6min.

  • Belikin infused Lobsters Coconut Lobster Bisque Recipes, 41min.

  • 19th Annual Placencia Lobsterfest, 18min.

  • Alpha Male by Liz (Men Clothes), 15min.

  • A New Director and Renewed Vision for Sports in Belize, 6min. Mr. Ian Jones is the new national director at the National Sports Council and last week we sat with him to discuss his plans and the work of the council …

  • Dreaming on Catamaran Charters in Belize, 2min. Fully Crewed and Inclusive 7 night yacht charters for up to 6 guests from Placencia in Belize! Set your senses free in every regard with the luxury catamaran and discover a shift in your reality.

  • RAF Belize, 17min. The British military presence in Belize during the 1980's/1990's.

  • Snorkeling Belize 2017, 14min.

  • Coconut guy gets us coconuts!, 1min.

  • Hanging out in Belize, 4min.

    June 21, 2017


    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, and other specials


    The San Pedro Sun

    TROPICAL STORM BRET – SITUATION REPORT # 1
    Tropical Storm Bret, the second named Storm for the 2017 Atlantic Hurricane Season formed near Trinidad on June 19, 2017. TS Bret impacted Trinidad and Tobago and Grenada during Monday night, June 19, 2017 into early Tuesday morning June 20, 2017. According to the National Hurricane Center, Miami Florida, as at 11:00am (AST) Tuesday June 20, 2017, the center of Tropical Storm Bret was located near latitude 11.6 North, longitude 64.4 West. Bret is moving toward the westnorthwest near 21 mph (33 km/h), and this motion is expected to continue through tomorrow. On the forecast track, the center of the tropical storm or its remnants will continue to move across the southeastern Caribbean Sea for the next couple of days. Maximum sustained winds are near 45 mph (75 km/h) with higher gusts. Weakening should begin today, and the system is expected to dissipate on Thursday.

    Belize Red Cross San Pedro Branch holds second blood drive of 2017
    The Belize Red Cross, San Pedro Branch (BRCSPB) hosted their regular blood drive on Saturday, June 17th at the Dr. Otto Rodriguez San Pedro Polyclinic II. From 9AM to 3PM, potential donors came prepared to donate their blood, with a total of 11 pints collected by the day’s end. While the BRCSPC would have liked to get more donations, it is still appreciative of all of the donors efforts. In the meantime, the Red Cross is advocating for newcomers to become donor conscious. According to them, the demand for blood exceeds the amount collected, so they always try to encourage people to donate.

    Group Hug’s Brainiac Competition a Huge Success in Hattieville
    On Saturday, June 17th, Group Hug successfully hosted the first ever ‘Brainiac: General Knowledge and History Quiz Competition’ in Hattieville. Ten students participated, five representing Pilgrim Fellowship Mennonite School and five representing Hattieville Government School. The villagers who attended the event were thrilled to witness the eager students confidently responding with astounding accuracy – half way through the questions being read. The participants all demonstrated that they were sufficiently prepared thanks to the support of their teachers and parents. After five rounds of intense competition and three ‘sudden-death’ rounds – there were over eight ties – first, second and third places were finally named! First place was won by Aijhelon Ysaguirre who took home a High School Scholarship and $300 cash; Second place was secured by Melanie Bodden, who won a High School Scholarship and $200 cash; Third place went to Tajah Robateau who won a brand new cell phone and $100 cash.

    Isla Bonita Elementary holds preschool and Standard Six graduation
    On Saturday, June 17th, Isla Bonita Elementary School (IBES) held their graduation service and 17th commencement exercise program at the R.A. Nuñez Auditorium. Under the theme, “Dare to dream big and never lose grip on your dreams; cling to them even if they seem too far”, the graduates proudly marched to the tune of Pomp and Circumstance. The preschool 2017 graduating class made a pledge their class, along with a pledge to the Belizean flag, and presented a welcome song. Standard Six graduate Anna Garcia gave the official welcome address, where she thanked the gathering of family members, teachers, and honorary guests for attending the ceremony.

    Horace Bladon and Team wins 7th Annual Dorado Rodeo Fishing Tournament
    Caribbean Villas Resort, south of San Pedro Town, was the rendezvous point for the fishermen that participated in the seventh annual Dorado Rodeo Fishing Tournament on Saturday, June 17th. Despite the threat of bad weather, fishermen took to sea at daybreak, hoping to reel in the catch of the day. At the end of the weigh-ins, Team Precidice, captained by Horace Bladon, won the grand $5,000 prize. Organized by Captain Shark’s Marine Centre, the tournament saw a total of 17 teams competing. The main target of the day’s competition was the fast moving predator fish- the Dorado- also known as Mahi-Mahi or Dolphin fish. Some fishers say it is the perfect challenge for a fisherman. Its speed and size provide an exhilarating fight.

    US Embassy to host Flag Raising Ceremony
    The U.S. Embassy will be hosting a Flag Raising Ceremony in commemoration of LGBTI Pride Month on Wednesday, June 21 at 10 a.m. at the U.S. Embassy in Belmopan. The U.S. Embassy has invited members of government, civil society, and the diplomatic corps to be present for the official ceremony. The flag will fly for the remainder of June to celebrate LGBTI Pride Month.

    Costa Maya Festival Presents: Miss Panama Maria Fernanda Jaspe
    The highly-anticipated International Costa Maya Festival® is adding to the excitement with the announcement of Miss Panama Maria Fernanda Jaspe. She is the third contestant set to grace the stage in under two months, vying for the title of Reina del La Costa Maya 2017-2018. 18 year-old Jaspe stands tall at 5’9”, with dark brown eyes and chocolate hair. She is currently a dentistry student, and her hobbies include modeling and dancing. Jaspe now joins Miss Guatemala Lesly Fernanda Flores Sagastume, and Miss Costa Rica Glennys Medina Segura, as they await the announcement of the remaining 2017 Reina de La Costa Maya® pageant contestants. The Pageant will take place on Thursday, August 3rd at the Honorable Louis Sylvester Sporting Area at 7PM. They will be joined onstage by Miss Belize, El Salvador, Honduras, Mexico, and Nicaragua in the pursuit to take the coveted crown currently held by Miss Costa Maya 2015 Gabriela Vanessa Salazar Valle.

    Ambergris Today

    Fresh Lobster Kabob Anyone?
    Fresh lunch on board Seaduced by Belize as captain Elito Arceo shows of his lobster catch of the day to his guests. Lobster! You Better Belize it! There is no better way of eating it than FRESH! Everybody loves lobster and Belize knows how to celebrate the opening of the season and enjoy the taste of the delicious spiney lobster.

    German Journalists Conclude Working Visit To Belize
    Representatives of five top German media outlets have concluded a four-day working visit to key tourism areas in Belize as part of a three-country tour organized by the Central America Tourism Agency (CATA). The team was comprised of Susanne Kilimann from Magazine Forum, Stefan Keiffer of Rhein Zetung Newspaper, Bernhard Mogge from Diereise Oneline Journal, Britta Matzen from Madsack Weekly and Robin Hartmann from Journalismusbu Hartman News Agency. The team arrived in Belize on Sunday, 11th June as part of their last leg of a tour to Central America, which included Panama and Nicaragua. In Belize, they visited the Warasa Garifuna Drum School in Punta Gorda, the Nim Li Punit archaeological site, Placencia Village and Laughing Bird Caye among others.

    Misc Belizean Sources

    mzz

    Women for Research study in San Pedro
    If you attended San Pedro High School between 1996 and 2001 and are female, please contact Dr. Eileen Anderson-Fye to participate in a voluntary research study about the effects of education on your life at SanPedroStudy@gmail.com. You may also message her via Facebook Messenger.

    MFA Referendum Belize
    In order to jump start the educational campaign and keep the public informed on all things related to the Belize-Guatemala dispute, we have created a page that will post news and updates on the topic.

    Blood Drive at St. Ann's Church July 1
    9am - 4pm, Free refreshments for all donors. Age 18-65.

    Big meth bust on Harvest Caye
    Three Eastern Caribbean nationals in jail News Five has learned of a significant bust of drugs on the island of Harvest Caye, where Norwegian Cruise Lines has their cruise port. Sometime last week, three visitors to the island were found with two kilos of methamphetamine according to Placencia police. The visitors, two men from the islands of St. Vincent and the Grenadines and the other from St. Lucia, have been charged and remanded to Hattieville prison. However, police are mum on further details at this time.

    World Croc Day at the Zoo!
    Thank you to everyone from near and afar who supported the CRC and The Belize Zoo as we celebrated World Croc Day yesterday. It was a great success that included the launching of Miss Sharon Matola's book This Croc Rocks! In collaboration with our partners and friends at The Belize Zoo, we celebrated the first World Croc Day. Quite a success with a special visit from the Mexican Ambassador and the Chetumal Zoo.

    German Journalists Conclude Working Visit to Belize
    The main purpose of the journalists’ visit was to obtain a first-hand experience of the Belize tourism product, with the potential to produce several articles on Belize in their respective publications. The visit was facilitated by the Belize Tourism Board (BTB) in support of participating stakeholders. CATA aims to contribute to the significant growth of tourism in the Central American region through international related promotion and positioning. Its general mission is to increase the recognition of Central America as a highly competitive, innovative and diverse tourism multi-destination product. In addition, CATA also aims to increase the flow of visitors and build synergies with the trade sector in the target markets, within the continuous marketing efforts, facilitating contacts and business opportunities for the Central American region, which has a population of over 40 Million inhabitants.

    Join the Corozal Poktapok Maya Ball Team
    Make history by becoming a member of the first (in modern times) Corozal Poktapok Maya Ball Team. Calling on our community members to ignite this lost cultural sport. Interested persons can message, visit the Corozal House of Culture (NICH) or visit the Corozal Sports Council. Training will be in Corozal Town Saturday July 8th and Sunday July 9th provided by the Yo Creek Ek Balam Maya Ball Team who recently won their competition in Mexico.

    Belize Tourism Board's Digital Marketing Summit 2017
    As tourism digital marketers today, we face more challenges and bigger business demands than ever before. Our reality is “do more with less, using new technologies”. No small feat, indeed. To succeed, we have to rethink our marketing and do away with the hurdles that hold us back. As Belize’s Tourism Digital marketers, we must demand a greater digital transformation that inspires innovation. Belize Tourism Board (BTB) Digital Marketing Summit provides all the inspiration you need to rethink your tourism digital marketing and brings internationally recognize presenters that can give you the tools to act. Become the tourism marketer of the future today. Join the summit.

    Kudos to TIDE in partnership with Department of Youth Services for doing such great work with the CARSI ESF Grant!
    Kudos to TIDE in partnership with Department of Youth Services for doing such great work with the CARSI ESF Grant! The Toledo Institute for Development and Environment (TIDE) in partnership with the Department of Youth Services (DYS) and funding from the US Embassy continues to improve the lives of young people in the Toledo District through various skills training. Today, 16/06/2017 two cohorts, trained in plumbing and electrical showcased their talents to the community. We say Kudus to those who completed the courses and encourage others to take advantage of the upcoming training courses!

    Splashers
    Join us this week at Cazy Canucks Beach Bar to paint "Rain Rain Go Away"

    Donate to Ya'axché rangers
    Ya'axché rangers are on the frontline of protecting Belize's natural resources in southern Belize. Daily the vigilant and highly trained rangers patrol the forests of Bladen Nature Reserve.This 100,000-acre forested area ensures that Belizeans who are living downstream of rivers enjoy clean drinking water. Donate today at http://goto.gg/28532 to help rangers reach remote areas of Bladen.

    Therapy dolls. If you need 1 at 1:30 a.m. you need therapy
    "The National Institute of Culture and History (NICH) through the Institute of Creative Arts (ICA) will be hosting a handing-over ceremony to the Department of Human Services at The Bliss Center at 1:30 AM on the 22nd of June (Thursday). Since 2013 Mrs. Raquel Robles Pacheco has been visiting Belize via ICA’S Expressive Arts Education Program (EAE). She has conducted training workshops in puppet making, puppet theatre, drama and cornhusk doll making. She and her partner Jesus Cosio Rivas have also performed at the Costa Maya Festival. Additionally, she assists with training sessions for the Youth and Community Transformation Project under the Ministry of Human Development and has conducted training for children at Yabra’s Community Policing Center. On Thursday, June 22nd, ICA will be handing over a set of therapy dolls to the Department of Human Services. The Rovers will also conduct a small demonstration of the training they received. Additonally, ICA will present Mrs. Robles-Pacheco with an award in gratitude for her 5 years of teaching in Belize."

    Electrical & Plumbing
    The Toledo Institute for Development and Environment (TIDE) in partnership with the Department of Youth Services (DYS) and funding from the US Embassy continues to improve the lives of young people in the Toledo District through various skills training. Today, 16/06/2017 two cohorts, trained in plumbing and electrical showcased their talents to the community. We say Kudus to those who completed the courses and encourage others to take advantage of the upcoming training courses!

    BCCI & COTA STRATEGIC ALLIANCE
    The Belize Chamber of Commerce and Industry (BCCI) and Chamber of the Americas (COTA) will form a strategic alliance to foster connections between the two organizations to assist members to increase their business in Belize and across the Americas. Plans include hosting the Belize Chamber for a town forum in Denver this fall and then to plan a trade mission to Belize.Kim Aikman, CEO of The Belize Chamber of Commerce and Industry and Gil Cisneros, CEO of The Chamber of The Americas said that they are looking forward to working cooperatively on a variety of initiatives to assist their members in expanding their opportunities.

    Information-gathering Workshop on Orange Walk’s Historical Landmarks
    The National Institute of Culture and History through the Institute for Social and Cultural Research, the Museum of Belize and Houses of Culture will commence research on the various historical landmarks in and around Orange Walk Town. The first activity is an information-gathering workshop to be held on Saturday, 24 June 2017 from 9:00 a.m. – 2:00 p.m. at the Banquitas House of Culture, Orange Walk Town. The main objectives of the workshop are to develop a comprehensive list of historic buildings and sites associated with historic and cultural events and to identify key resource persons with historical information, collectibles, and photos.

    Community Restore Center provides support and literacy training to under privileged parents and children in Corozal Town
    Posted is the official inauguration of the newly facelifted center on June 19th 2017 at 5:00 p.m. under the direction of Mr. Ramon and his wife Yvonne with a team of generous volunteers from Texas, USA. Effectively, the center will now provide literacy training 5 days a week for children to promote continued excellence in school. The adult literacy program which was implemented under the direction of Ms. Adela Pederson will continue to provide support to adults on Mondays from 3:00 p.m. to 5:00 p.m. Many who have been attending this literacy program have experienced great success with the ability to experience the joys of reading after 6 weeks of effort. This effort also tranfers to successes in many other areas of their lives. Many Thanks to Ms. Loraine Zuniga for your dedication to this cause.

    Marimba Youth Summer Camp
    The Benque House of Culture is having a Summer Camp where kids can learn how to play the marimba. The Benque Youth Marimba Academy plays all over the country, and they are amazing to see live. Contact the Benque HoC at 823-2697 for more information.

    The ticket prices are out for Costa Maya Festival!

    Miss Costa Maya 2017 Delegate – Maria Fernanda Jaspe Miss Panama
    Meet Miss Costa Maya 2017 Delegate – Miss Panama, Maria Fernanda Jaspe Age: 18 years old, Height: 5'9", Student: Dentistry. Among her hobbies are modeling and dancing.

    Channel 7

    Attorney For Castro Brothers Defends Their Case Against Evidence That They Were Charged
    Last night, we told you about the heap of trouble that UDP Minister Edmond Castro's sons, Jafari and Wasani, got into over the weekend. They had a run in with Belize City police in the early morning hours of last Friday. That ended by midday, when they were released, and only a few hours later, they were busted in Orange Walk with 89 cases of contraband beer. The contraband offenses have been settled out of court, but the public embarrassment for the Castro family is far from over because little by little, other documents detailing the police encounter are being released to the press. Last night we challenged Southside Commander Chester Williams with the electronic police report that was filed against the Castro brothers by a police officer requesting court action and stating that they were charged.

    Immigration's Crackdown on "Bar-Girls"
    Dozens of so-called "bar girls" in southern Belize have spent the past two days in police stations and courtrooms after an Immigration crackdown in Stann Creek and Toledo on Sunday. The Director of Immigration Diana Locke confirms that a total of 31 women were detained in the South - denying rumors which put the total number above 50. They are being processed in Punta Gorda, Independence and Dangriga Magistrate's Courts - while being held at the PG and Dangriga police stations. Additionally, three bar owners are being held. According to Director Locke, so far none has been identified as trafficking victims, but they are all illegal and working without temporary work permits in these Bars. As we understand, so far a number of them have pleaded guilty to not having documents to be in Belize legally.

    Price for Regular Fuel Spikes, Diesel and Premium Stable
    Fuel prices are being adjusted at midnight tonight - and our advice is, if you use regular fuel, go and gas up now. That's because regular is going up 31 cents per gallon, from $9.87 to $10.18 in the city. The prices for Diesel and Premium fuel are going down but only by once cent per gallon each. So premium will be $10.53 per gallon, while Diesel will be $8.96 per gallon.

    Caught By Social Media, Jailed By The Chief Magistrate
    A little over a year after being charged for the burglary of Spoonaz Cafe on North Front Street, Derrick Garbutt has been sentenced 7 years in prison. In May 2016, security cameras caught Garbutt breaking into the cafe and stealing several bottles of alcohol and a pellet gun valued at a total of $1750. After realizing that he had been robbed, the cafe's owner, Jeremy Spooner, turned to social media to catch the criminal. After posting footage of the burglary to Facebook, Garbutt was quickly identified and handed over to police by Spooner himself.

    Norwegian Security Called In Cops For Cocaine Crew Members
    Tonight, there is an update to that cocaine found on a Norwegian Cruise Ship down at Harvest Caye. Police have finally filled in information that they should have provided a week ago. On Tuesday morning at 8:45am, Norwegian Security Officers called out Placencia Police to the Norwegian Escape Cruise Ship that was docked at Harvest Caye. They told police that they found suspected drugs in a cabin on the ship occupied crew members Derson Frank, from St. Vincent. Police searched his cabin and found two kilos, or about four and a half pounds of cocaine. He told them that two other men were involved, namely, Renaldo Roberts, also from St. Vincent and Jamal Celise of St. Lucia.

    Contraband-it Crashes While Running From Customs
    Last night we told you about Froyland Peralta, the 69 year old San Antonio Villager who drowned after his ford Ranger pickup truck accidentally rolled into the Rio Hondo. It happened in Santa Cruz village, right across from Botes, Mexico, which is one of the most trafficked illegal contraband crossings. And, again this morning the perils of contraband trafficking were exposed when a Ford Ranger pickup truck, fleeing from Customs, crashed into a parked vehicle, also a Ranger. It happened in August Pine Ridge where the driver of the Ranger was fleeing at high speeds, and throwing away tomatoes so Customs wouldn't catch him with the contraband. But, he lost control and crashed into the parked pickup near the bus stop.

    Jamal Jackson To Jail
    Today 32 year old Jamal Jackson appeared in the Magistrate's Court where he was handed two 3 year sentences. In February 2016, Jackson was pursued by police in relation to a shooting the occurred on Albert Street. Jackson did not have any firearm when they confronted him, but he led the cops to a 9mm pistol and 9 rounds of ammunition. Jackson - who had been found guilty last week - was charged for keeping a firearm and ammunition without a gun license and for handling stolen goods. Before sentencing him, Chief Magistrate Anne Marie Smith heard pleas for mitigation from Jackson's mother Alice Roches and his attorney Douglas Carr. However, Smith told them that she could not give leniency because of Jackson's criminal past which dates back to 2005.

    Crime Stoppers And The Community
    Crime Stoppers is an NGO created to assist law enforcement in solving crimes and locating illegal drugs and firearms. It relies on anonymous tips from members of the community who may be aware of suspicious or dangerous activities happening around them. Today a Belize's main security forces were invited to participate in a workshop hosted by Crime Stoppers international. Representatives from Crime Stopper's El Salvador branch made presentations focused on working with the community to track down illicit drugs, guns and contraband goods. We spoke to the Vice Chair of Crime Stoppers Belize, Lauren Reardon Smith, about the event...

    Santa Familia Residents Demand Justice For Slain Teen
    The Santa Familia community is still coming to terms with the vicious killing of 16 year old Emy Guerra. Her throat was slashed and she was drowned on Friday night while with her boyfriend 22 year old Eliseo Bacab who survived. Her family and community is not waiting quietly for justice. Today they took to the streets in San Ignacio to make their voices heard on their loved one's murder. Cathy Guerra, Mother: "I just Justice, I just want they pay for what they do to my daughter."

    Malpractice Case Goes To Court of Appeal
    Last week, we told you about the big judgments coming out of the Court of Appeal, and one case they heard during this session was a medical malpractice lawsuit brought against Dr. George Gough. Last year, Supreme Court Justice Courtney Abel handed down a judgment against him, ruling that he must pay his former patient, Alice Arana-Gillett, just over 52 thousand dollars. That's the award of damages that Justice Abel said that he owed her for a botched medical procedure he performed. That happened back in October of 2009, when she started suffering severe pain, and she was rushed to a private hospital. Dr. Gough was the doctor who took over the case, and he determined that she needed a surgery to remove her gall bladder. He decided that it should be laparoscopic surgery, and that she would be up and about in no time. He performed the surgery on her, and 2 days later, she started having severe complications. She went back to him, and he prescribed medication to do deal with the symptoms, and when that didn't work, he finally re-admitted her.

    The Green Climate Fund Meets in Belize
    On Monday, the Green Climate Fund held a regional Conference in Placencia at the Belize Ocean Club. This fund arises from the Paris Agreement, where 148 countries committed to curb greenhouse gas emissions mitigation and bring down global temperatures. Well, the Fund is about setting the agenda for what are called small island developing states, including Belize - which though not an island is linked with its Caribbean counterparts. Here's how they put it at the opening:...

    Making Sense of MICS
    Back in November of last year, we told you about results of the Multiple Indicator Cluster Survey, or MICS. Its a collaboration between the Statistical Institute of Belize and UNICEF, which aims to collect and analyze data about Belizean citizens in order to better inform policy making. It's done every 5 years, and it seeks to study the wellbeing of the country's women and children. So, the policy makers have had just over 6 months to digest the results, and today, UNICEF reached out to the entire press to discuss what they view as the most important parts of the survery. One of the experts discussed a few of the areas of concern that the survey exposes for children between the ages of 3 and 4.

    Jennifer Smith Is Miss Y
    Jennifer Smith won the 2017 Miss Y seenager pageant hosted by the YWCA at the Bliss CENTER last Saturday night, June 17.Miss Smith also won the title of Miss Amity as she charmed the judges with her talent presentation - singing "My Bonnie lies over the Ocean", Ex-BDF officer Jean Lucas won first runner-up, singing a beautiful religious hymn for her talent presentation; and she was sashed as Miss Vivacious.

    NICH Making History
    It may be summer, but NICH ha staunched it's latest documentary about the Christmas Bram in Gales Point. It is both history and tradition as the documentary explains:..

    One More Note On Murder
    And before we close tonight, a late update on Emy Guerra's case: late information to 7news is that the post mortem results are in and the cause of death is asphyxiation by drowning due to head and neck trauma. In terms of the suggestion that Guerra was raped, our sources say that police are waiting for results of analysis from the forensic lab.

    Channel 5

    Angry Santa Familia residents thwarted from confronting accused killers
    The chilling murder of Emy Guerra in the west still has the Santa Familia community reeling. The sixteen-year-old girl and her boyfriend Eleazer Bacab were in the village when three [...]

    Chester Williams takes on media over Castro decision
    Now, Assistant Commissioner of Police Chester Williams sat before the press on Monday and spent nearly half an hour explaining why police chose not to charge twenty-three year old Wasani, [...]...

    Castro brothers’ attorney Herbert Panton recounts detention
    The Brothers Castro and the curious case of the unlicensed Wingle, the haul of contraband beer, and their ministerial connections is a story that won’t go away. The arrest of [...]...

    Former Magistrate Panton dismisses leaked documents
    According to Panton, Police Constable Shedrick Caliz presumably made an about-face and decided not to proceed with charges when he failed to produce a medico-legal form after allegedly roughing up [...]...

    Panton says ACP Williams, police did the right thing
    While Assistant Commissioner of Police Chester Williams is facing strong adverse criticism by the media and the public, Panton maintains that A.C.P. Williams had indicated from the beginning that a [...]...

    Regular Gas Going Up at Midnight
    There are changes to gasoline fuel prices to report tonight, and they are a mixed bag. Regular fuel is going up to ten dollars and eighteen cents in Belize City [...]...

    San Pablo residents meet with MoE; no update on investigation
    The Ministry of Education continues its investigation of a reported incident of corporal punishment and possible child abuse against teacher Ednita Cocom of San Pablo Government School. She is accused [...]...

    Union negotiator reports threats as stevedores meet with NTUCB
    Last week a group of stevedores called on President of the C.W.U., Dale Trujeque, to halt the negotiations for the Collective Bargaining Agreement with the Port of Belize Limited. Thirty-three [...]...

    Customs reviews policy on uncustomed goods
    The Immigration Department is not the first or last Government agency to be audited from within by the Audit Department. Indeed, a general audit is supposed to be conducted annually [...]...

    Customs-Police back to good relations
    There were back to back reports of contraband activity from cops in the North in April. First, a cop and a special constable were caught in Orange Walk on video, [...]...

    Accused pleads guilty to theft at Spoonaz Café
    In May of 2016, Spoonaz Photo Café & Bar was burglarized and the culprit was caught on surveillance camera. Today, after more than a year of incarceration, the accused thirty-nine [...]...

    Jamaal Jackson back to jail for gun possession during attempted robbery
    Chief Magistrate Anne Marie Smith also dealt with the case of thirty-two -year old Jamaal Jackson who was on remand awaiting sentencing for the offense of kept unlicensed firearm and [...]...

    Police confirm drug trafficking aboard Norwegian ship
    A week after it happened, police have confirmed the presence of drugs aboard a cruise ship docked at Harvest Caye in the Stann Creek District. Police indicated on Monday that [...]...

    Drivers charged for traffic offenses in Orange Walk
    The Transport Department continues to pursue drivers in an operation to enforce the national traffic and road safety laws. This past Friday, nine drivers of buses in the Orange Walk [...]...

    Police, Immigration’s “southern sweep” nets at least thirty immigrants
    Reports from Punta Gorda say that as many as thirty women from the South will face immigration violation charges after a sweep over the weekend. Information from the area states [...]...

    UNICEF, press discuss MICS 5 survey
    In 2015, the Statistical Institute of Belize, along with UNICEF, embarked upon an extensive survey which would yield the most important sources of data used for situation analyses and policy [...]...

    Fighting flooding in the City
    The hurricane season is only a few weeks old and there are two storms presently churning in the Atlantic, though neither are close to Belize. Closer to home, though, is [...]...

    Finally, activity to begin at Commercial Center
    It has been close to three years since the Belize City Council launched the Belize City House of Culture and Downtown Rejuvenation Project which included a facelift for the Commercial [...]...

    A preview of KTV The Remix with William Neal
    February twentieth, 2001. Channel Five has had many popular entertainment shows and introduced no shortage of top talent to our Belizean viewers over the years, but it all started here [...]...

    A sample of audition participants as per show kicks off tonight
    The first round of competition of the remix takes place at the bliss next week Tuesday. Catch it live at eight-thirty PM. But here is a peek look at the [...]...

    CTV3

    Well Known Corozaleno Found Dead At Home
    Shortly after 11 this morning, Corozal Police received information of a man lying motionless in a yard on William Schofield Street in Corozal Town. When we arrived at the scene the body was being removed from inside the yard by officers. The body was placed on the back of the Police’s pickup truck and taken to the Corozal Community hospital where the medical doctor examined the body and pronounced the individual dead. The officers then transported the body to the morgue.

    Lawyer Of Castro Brothers Comes Out To Their Defense
    Yesterday we gave you details of what seemed like a wild spree last Friday by the two sons of UDP Minister Edmond Castro that started in Belize City with an altercation with Police Officers. The Castro boys, Jafari and Wasani, had been detained for assaulting three Police officers in the wee hours of Friday morning after the officers attempted to detain them for traffic violations. The duo was eventually released and in the evening they were caught in Orange Walk hauling almost 90 cases of illegal Corona beers by Customs officials. While Customs have settled the contraband matter with a still unknown fine that had to be paid forthwith, the matter with the Police has not, and has actually become a major scandal.

    Another Contraband Bust In Orange Walk
    In last night’s newscast, we reported on a major contraband bust which occurred here in the Orange Walk District involving the Castro brothers namely Jafari and Wasani Castro who were also in the company of Jihani Espadas and Dedric Ramclam. The men were caught in the possession of eighty nine cases of Mexican beers which were confiscated by Customs officials. Tonight there is another contraband bust to report on… this time though; it was a much smaller bust which involved boxes of vegetables containing cabbage, onions and tomatoes. According to reports reaching our newsroom, the driver of the white pickup truck, tried to evade Customs officials resulting in a pursuit. Further reports state that majority of the items were thrown out of the vehicle during the chase. The white pickup truck then reportedly collided into another vehicle forcing the driver to come to a halt in the area of the Yo Creek Village.

    Department Of Transport Cracks Down On Traffic Violators
    Last week, the Department of Transport announced that it will be cracking down on violators of the traffic rules and regulations countrywide. The new initiative of the DOT has already taken effect as on Friday a total of nine bus drivers from more than six different bus companies were charged with traffic offenses by officers attached to the Department of Transport here in Orange Walk. They are Shane Pollard, Alfredo Rodriguez, Josue Diaz, Wilmer Lino, Wayne Grinage, Aldo Yama, Rafael Che, Jorge Rendon and Joel Armstrong. All persons were charged with ‘carrying of excessive passengers on a public service vehicle’ with the exception of Rendon and Che who were charged with ‘failure to produce a road service permit’.

    Carribbean Tourists Behind Bars For Drug Trafficking
    Three Caribbean Tourists are tonight behind bars at the Belize Central Prison after a substantial quantity of illicit drugs was found in their room inside the Norwegian Escape Cruise Ship that was docked at Harvest Caye in southern Belize. According to Police reports on Tuesday, June 13, 2017 about 8:45 a.m., Placencia Police were called to the Norwegian Escape Cruise Ship docked at Harvest Caye in southern Belize where security officers reported that they had found suspected drugs in a cabin on the ship occupied by Derson Frank, 30 years of age, of St. Vincent.

    LOVE FM

    OW Research on Historical Landmarks to Begin
    On May 12, 2017 at the last sitting of the House of Representatives, Minister of Culture, Patrick Faber rose to introduce the National Cultural Heritage Preservation Bill 2017. This new Bill looks to establish a fund that will provide for structural improvements under the initiative that seeks to preserve portions of Belize’s history by way […]

    Seven Years for Burglary at Spoonaz
    38-year-old, Derrick Garbutt, a career burglar, was sentenced to 7 years today by the Chief Magistrate, Anne Marie Smith after he changed his plea from not guilty to guilty of burglary. Garbutt, who is serving time for a previous burglary conviction, will only serve 6 years because 1 year, the time he was a remanded […]

    Fire at Children’s Home Was Set by Minor
    Last Thursday, June 15, a small fire broke out under a small shed behind one of the buildings in the Dorothy Menzies Child Care Center compound. Residents in the area reported that they smelled paper burning and soon located the blaze. The fire officials were called sometime after four o’clock in the afternoon and had […]

    German Journalists Tour Belize
    The Central America Tourism Agency (CATA) recently arranged to have representatives from five media outlets in Germany take a three-country tour with Belize being one of the three. The team got to Belize on Sunday, June 11 where they were taken to various locations around the country including visited the Warasa Garifuna Drum School in […]

    PlusTV

    Man shot and killed in San Ignacio
    There was a homicide in San Ignacio Town on Friday, June 16. The victim is 20 year Maynor Leonel Portillo of Santa Elena town. Portillo was shot to the head and his body was found at the eastern side of the Novelo’s Convention Center. Portillo’s body was found in a sitting position leaning ...

    Jorge Lemus’ bruised body found in drain in Unitedville
    Police in Cayo are also investigating another death. The body of a man was discovered on Saturday morning in Unitedville. The body was found in a drain that runs along the George Price Highway. The man was seen floating face down in the drain. He was wearing a white shirt and long khaki pants. He ha...

    Minister Castro’s sons found with over $6000 worth of contraband beers
    Minister of Transport and NEMO Edmond Castro is back in the news as it relates to alleged criminal activities; not him personally though, but his two sons. 23 year old Wasani Castro and 21 year old Jafari Castro were intercepted in Orange Walk as they were travelling in a white Wingle. Customs foun...

    Police say Minister’ sons were not charged; despite leaked police report
    That is not all the news with these Castro boys this weekend, however. There was also an incident with them in Belize City before the contraband bust. A police report was leaked to the media on Friday to indicate that the same three men in the contraband vehicle were detained in Belize City a few h...

    Caribbean Nationals aboard Norwegian found with kilos of cocaine
    3 Caribbean nationals were remanded to Kolbe Foundationf or 2 kilos of cocaine found in their possession aboard the Norwegian last week. Two are from St. Lucia and one from St Vincent. The three men are reportedly workers on the cruise ship. They allegedly picked up the drugs from Roatan and somewh...

    Woman perishes in motorcycle accident
    A woman was riding her motorcycle on the road to Valley of Peace on Saturday, June 17th when she lost control and crashed. 26 year old Fabiola Velasquez , a resident of Young Bank area of Camalote village, was riding her motorcycle, heading home after attending a function in Valley of Peace. Someho...

    Belizean on 10 most wanted US Immigration list
    A 45 year old Belizean man,Santos Moreira, is listed among the top 10 most wanted for the United States Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE). The US wants to deport Moreira back to Belize, who has made his way back to the US several times after several deportations due to criminal activities h...

    90 year old shop owner robbed and killed
    A 90 year old store owner was robbed and killed in August Pine Ridge, Orange Walk District. According to police reports, sometime around 2:30 Thursday afternoon, 90 year old Pedro Pol was in his shop in the village when two Hispanic men entered the store. The men were armed with machetes and they bo...

    Man shot in Belize City
    There was a shooting in Belize City last night where 22 year old Wasan Avila was the victim. Sometime around 7 o’clock last night, Avila was on Jasmine Street socializing with a friend when they were approached by two male persons on bicycles. One of the male persons pulled out a hand gun and fired...

    IMF suggests further belt tightening for Belize such as increasing GST and retrenchment
    An International Monetary Fund team visited Belize from June 6th to the 15th and met with Prime Minister Dean Barrow, Minister of State at the Ministry of Finance, Dr. Carla Barnett,; Governor of the Central Bank of Belize Joy Grant, and Financial Secretary Joseph Waight. According to the Concludin...

    Teacher Naomi Taylor was victim of Fatal RTA
    Yesterday we told you about the traffic accident that claimed the life of a young teacher. She has been identified as 26 year old Naomi Abigail Taylor of Wagerale area of Dangriga Town. The incident happened at around 4:15 Thursday afternoon when Naomi was riding her bicycle on Ecumenical Drive. A ...

    Amandala

    Lovers’ rendezvous at cemetery ends in death
    On Friday night, Amy Guerra, 16, left her home in Bullet Tree Falls en route to Santa Familia to meet her ex-boyfriend, Eliseo Bacab, 22. The two had agreed to meet to iron out their differences after an intimate relationship, which they had begun over a year ago, had recently gone sour. Their meeting, unfortunately, would end in bloodshed. At around 10 o’clock that night, the lovers met near the village cemetery, but upon seeing three men, whom they knew, the couple decided to walk over to the football field. For reasons yet to be revealed, the three men followed them a few minutes later. One of the men, armed with a knife, accosted Bacab and stabbed him as many as ten times. Bacab was later thrown into a nearby river and left for dead. While Bacab was being attacked, Guerra tried to escape, but she was captured and stabbed multiple times in the throat. She, too, was thereafter thrown into a nearby river.

    IMF presses Belize to increase GST to 15%, and broaden tax base
    Following a mission to Belize which was concluded yesterday, June 15, the International Monetary Fund (IMF) is asserting that the Government of Belize needs to take further measures to put the national debt and the economy on a better trajectory and mitigate risks. The IMF continues to press the Government of Belize to increase consumer taxes, particularly by upping the rate of the General Sales Tax (GST) from 12.5% to 15%. So far, the Barrow administration has resisted calls from the Fund to increase the tax levy, which the IMF suggests should be charged on essential items now zero-rated, with the removal of exemptions. After IMF meetings led by Dr. Bert van Selm, formerly the IMF resident representative to Jamaica, with key government officials in Belize, including Prime Minister Dean Barrow, Financial Secretary Joseph Waight, Central Bank Governor Joy Grant, members of the Opposition People’s United Party, as well as representatives of the private sector and civil society, the Fund is also renewing calls on the Government of Belize to contain the wage bill and stabilize the number of public sector employees.

    Jennifer Louise Smith, 60, captures coveted Ms. Y crown
    Jennifer Louise Smith, 60, a “seenager” who is a survivor of domestic abuse, used the platform of the nation’s most prestigious pageant for elderly women to fulfill her lifelong dream of competing in a pageant, while telling her phenomenal survival story through a three-part monologue about how she overcame the most gargantuan struggles in her life. It was the famous poet Langston Hughes who wrote about what can happen when a dream gets deferred: it can “dry up like a raisin in the sun… fester like a sore [or]…explode?” “I always wanted to be in a pageant since I was in my 20s, but life did not permit it. I got married, and that’s it! That was buried because I started to have children,” Smith shared in an interview with Amandala today.

    Belizean shot and killed in Los Angeles
    Information to us this afternoon from a reliable source in Belize is that Belizean-American Eddie Lino, 22, of Los Angeles, was shot and killed at the junction of Denver and 58th Street in Los Angeles at about 5:00 yesterday evening. Information to us is that Lino was walking when a car drove up and his killer fired a shot out of the car, hitting him. When Lino fell, the car stopped and a man came out, stood over Lino and fired more shots into his body. After shooting him, the killer got back into the car and drove away. Lino was declared dead on the scene. His body was then taken to the morgue.

    Castro brothers busted with 89 cases of contraband beers
    An Orange Walk Customs official told us this evening that they found a cargo of beer, a total of 89 cases of assorted un-Customed Mexican beers, including Corona, Modelo, and Tecate, in a truck they inspected while on routine patrol about 10:00 Friday night. Four men were in the pickup at the time, two of whom are sons of Hon. Edmond Castro, Minister of Transport and the National Emergency Management Organization (NEMO), Wasani and Jafari Castro. The other two were Dedric Ramclam and Gian Espadas. Customs officials told us that the vehicle and beers were impounded and the men were taken into custody and detained. Today, the men decided that they would settle out of court. The Comptroller of Customs was consulted and an undisclosed settlement sum was agreed upon.

    Smart Mundialito reg. season ends; knockout semifinals this Saturday at MCC
    The final regular season games, to determine the top-4 playoff teams, were played on Saturday, June 17, in the 6th Smart Mundialito 13 & Under football tournament at the MCC Grounds. And when the last game of the day was over, history was made in the Mundialito, as for the first time ever, Heights FC will go on to the semifinals, while also for the first time in six years, Brown Bombers will fail to see playoff action. The race was tight for the last two playoff spots, and game 6 on Saturday, featuring playoff bound Ladyville Rising Stars and Brown Bombers, was crucial for the Bombers’ hopes. Interestingly, three of the four teams in this year’s playoff semifinals are from outside of Belize City. Only #3 seed City Boys is from Belize City; the other 3 teams are from Hattieville, Ladyville and Mahogany Heights.

    Belize loses opener, 5-1, to hosts Nicaragua in CONCACAF Women U-20 Qualifiers
    Reports indicate that our Belize National Women U-20 team lost, 5-1, to hosts Nicaragua in yesterday’s CONCACAF Women U-20 Qualifier in Esteli, Nicaragua. No scoring details have been received as yet. Congrats for avoiding a shutout, girls! Belize is in Group 1 along with Nicaragua and Costa Rica. Group 2 includes Honduras, Panama and El Salvador. In the Group 2 opener yesterday, Honduras dropped Panama, 2-0. (Guatemala remains suspended from FIFA/CONCACAF.) Tomorrow at 4:00 p.m., Honduras plays El Salvador in Group 2; and at 7:30 p.m., Belize plays Costa Rica in Group 1. Let’s go, Belize!!

    National Over-40 Week 3 results
    The National Over-40 Football Tournament continued over the weekend with 2 games each on Saturday and Sunday, June 17 & 18. On Saturday afternoon in Independence at the M.A. Stadium, visiting Pickstock Lake I and home standing Mango Creek Veterans played to a 3-3 draw. Sherlock Martinez (10’ & 40’) struck twice and Jermaine “Bowfoot” Zuniga (87’) got the other for Pickstock Lake I; while Mango Creek got a goal apiece from Wilmer Garcia (33’), Jeovanny Reyes (49’) and Antonio Baptist (58’). And after dark at the Isidoro Beaton Stadium, it was 2-2 between visiting Kulture Yabra and Belmopan Veterans. Maurice “Magic” Francis (5’) and David “Manu” McCaulay (68’) shook the net for Kulture, while Julio Veliz (5’) and Avery Galvez (52’) hit the target for Belmopan.

    Editorial: Belize – between Guatemala and Cuba
    Belize’s education system appears to encourage Belizean students to ignore regional affairs. This newspaper has therefore struggled mightily to inform the Belizean people about some regional realities which have major and ongoing significance for Belize’s status and sovereignty. In this light, United States’ President Donald J. Trump’s speech on Friday afternoon to the Cuban exile community in Miami was almost sensational on its implications for Belize. President Trump spoke very harshly about the Cuban government and the Cuban Revolution. In the last two years of his second term of office, President Barack Obama had made attempts to improve the climate between the U.S. and Cuba, but several of Obama’s initiatives are being reversed by Trump, and, of course, Mr. Trump will continue the crushing American embargo of Cuba. American President John F. Kennedy had been loved in Belize, because he was a Roman Catholic, the religion to which most Belizeans belong, and because it was felt in Belize, which was black majority in population during the Kennedy presidency, that Kennedy was sympathetic to the American black civil rights struggle being led by Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. Kennedy had been assassinated, on November 22, 1963, and mourned for decades in Belize before Belizeans began to find out about promises with respect to British Honduras (Belize) which the Kennedy administration (January 1961 to November 1963) had made to Guatemalan President Ydigoras Fuentes in return for Guatemala’s support for the April 1961 Bay of Pigs invasion by Cuban exiles.

    From the Publisher
    Of all the general elections I’ve seen here since I returned home from school in 1968, the 2012 general election is the one I least understand. Late on election night in March 2012, the Opposition People’s United Party (PUP) actually led in seats, if I remember correctly, but the incumbent United Democratic Party (UDP) came back in the end to win narrowly, 17-14. It had appeared to most observers that the UDP held a substantial lead in that race entering election day, the main reason being that the PUP had experienced leadership instability between late October of 2011 and the early March 2012 generals. In fact, the likelihood is that UDP Prime Minister, Hon. Dean O. Barrow, called the 2012 general election eleven months early because he had reason to believe the PUP was in some kind of disarray. In February of 2008, Said Musa had resigned as PUP Leader following a huge UDP victory in that month’s general election, and the following month John Briceño (Orange Walk Central), supported by Mark Espat (Albert) and Cordel Hyde (Lake Independence), had won somewhat of an upset victory in a leadership convention over Francis Fonseca (Freetown), the candidate supported by the PUP leadership powerhouses of the 1998-2008 PUP administrations – Said Musa and Ralph Fonseca.

    Belizeans: a ticking time bomb
    Dear Editor and Rt. Hon. Dean Barrow: Would you be concerned and moved to action if you knew that every day, each man, woman and child in Belize eats a daily dose of harmful chemicals with each tortilla and each slice of bread they ingest? The facts and statistics tell the true story of the condition of our flour here in Belize, the grain for which is imported by ADM (Archer, Daniels, Midland, a US company out of Chicago, Illinois (USA), and milled by the same company under the name of Belize Mills Ltd. in Belize City. The Belize Mills, ADM online website states that the grain supplied to Belize Mills originates in the US. Upon closer investigation, the statistics for wheat produced in the US as provided by the USDA (United Stated Department of Agriculture) for the year 2012 states as follows: 99% of durum wheat [hard wheat used in breads], 97% spring wheat and 60% winter wheat is treated with herbicides preharvest.

    Dehn fighting fi power! What’s next?
    In a Channel 5 interview last Wednesday, June 14, former FFB President Ruperto Vicente said, “I have been working for the past year. It’s been a long campaign for me, and I’ve been in communication with all the congress members…” After being sidelined following the deadlocked election vote for President on April 30, 2016, Vicente has been trying to garner support for his candidacy among the voting delegates country-wide for the upcoming June 24 election for President at the FFB 10th Ordinary Congress. First, Vicente made allegations against his opponent, Sergio Chuc, resulting in the Electoral Committee rejecting Chuc’s nomination for the post on the grounds that Chuc had crossed ethical lines in securing an unfair advantage in the election, because of his gifts to individuals who would be voting in the elections. With the strong move against Chuc’s candidacy, Vicente appeared poised to re-assume the presidency without a contest; but Chuc’s former running mate, now Acting President, Marlon Kuylen decided to throw his hat into the ring. And now, there is another attempt to smooth the road for Vicente’s return to the top post in the FFB.

    Jorge Lemus, 52, found dead in a drain in Unitedville
    The body of Jorge Lemus, 52, was found in Unitedville, in a drain bordering the George Price Highway, at around 8 o’clock on Saturday morning. He was observed with a swollen face and bruises to his left eye. Today, Assistant Superintendent of Police (ACP), Daniel Iche, told Amandala that Lemus, a construction worker of Unitedville, “was a known alcoholic.” But when our newspaper asked if Lemus may have gotten overly intoxicated and accidentally fallen into the drain, ASP Iche replied, “We will wait on the post-mortem examination result to determine the cause of his death.” While police await the results of a post-mortem, the Lemus family has opted to voice their suspicions to our newspaper.

    Amazing Taiwan – Belize: 2017 Cultural Exchange Programme launched
    The 2017 Cultural Exchange Programme by the Embassy of the Republic of China on Taiwan was launched this morning at the House of Culture in Belize City. Captioned “Amazing Taiwan – Belize”, the event aims to highlight Taiwanese culture, while exploring similarities with Belizean culture. Christine Huang, art instructor of the Primary and Secondary Art Skill Training Project, executed through the Embassy of Taiwan in Belize, said in delivering the introduction to the program, that it will feature a presentation of the traditional Zhonhyuan Festival. It will also include the making and launching of water lanterns and the showcasing of an animated Taiwanese film, including insights into the creation of animations. Also, there will be four summer camp groups available to 150 participants, youths and adults.

    Fire destroys house in Lake Independence: 5 people homeless
    Five people are homeless after a fire completely destroyed a house (and its contents) in Lake Independence yesterday. The owner of the house, Katherine Sinclair, and her boyfriend, told Amandala that they were not at home at the time when the blaze occurred. Sinclair said she was at her mother’s house, and her boyfriend was out selling fish when a friend came and informed her that her house had been on fire. She rushed home and found her house completely destroyed. Eugene Staine, Sinclair’s boyfriend, said that he was going home with his cart when several persons he met told him that his house had been destroyed by fire. On his arrival at his home, he saw the damage. He said he doesn’t know what caused the fire.

    Supreme Court rejects DPP’s application to revoke Nicholi Rhys’ bail
    The Supreme Court usually hears bail applications on Fridays, so it is on this day that remanded persons who are seeking to be released from custody on bail are usually brought to the court on a removal warrant. Nicholi Rhys was brought to court today, but he had no bail application hearing scheduled. Instead, the removal order for his transfer from the remand section of the Belize Central Prison was issued to facilitate an application from the Crown for his bail to be revoked. Crown counsel Jackie Willoughby appeared before Supreme Court Justice Herbert Lord to argue that the two bails that Rhys had been granted should be revoked, and that he should remain in prison until his cases are completed.

    Football shenanigans; the ghost of Bertie returns with Ruperto
    There is something rotten in Belizean football behind the scenes, and it is so convoluted and distasteful, that we have been reluctant to delve in and divert the attention of football loving fans from the exciting games that the players are engaged in on the field. Unfortunately, while they diligently sweat and give their all for the glory of the game and the joy they attain from giving a pleasing performance to the fans, others are diligently conspiring to see how they can best manipulate the situation to satisfy their own personal ends. Personal ambition is not a bad thing. Everyone wants to improve and enhance their financial condition. But when such endeavor becomes a drag and a drain on the limited resources which should be utilized to build up the game, so that it can better benefit all who contribute to its improvement, only to satisfy the personal needs of a few, then that is not good for the game.

    Breaking Belize NewsPJ

    Two justice systems – one for the poor and one for the political elite
    Belizeans, for the most part, would agree that justice in this country is not administered equally. It is a known fact, especially for Belizeans living in some of the most difficult circumstances, facing constant harassment and altercations with the law. There have been […]

    Law Students challenge CARICOM Heads of State for equal access to the Legal Training
    Ambassador Irwin LaRocque Secretary General of CARICOM CARICOM Secretariat Turkeyen, Gerogetown, Guyana, S.A. Dear Ambassador LaRocque, We greet you, and each Leader in the network of Democratic and Sovereign States of CARICOM and offer special homage for the work you are doing and will […]

    Two Caribbean Nationals busted with drugs in Harvest Caye
    According to police reports, on Tuesday, June 13, 2017 about 8:45 a.m., Placencia Police were called to the Norwegian Escape Cruise Ship that was docked at Harvest Caye in southern Belize. Security Officers reported that they found suspected drugs in a cabin on the ship occupied […]

    Information-gathering Workshop on Orange Walk’s Historical Landmarks
    The National Institute of Culture and History (NICH) through the Institute for Social and Cultural Research, the Museum of Belize and Houses of Culture will commence research on the various historical landmarks in and around Orange Walk Town. The first activity is an information-gathering […]

    Elderly man drowns in Toledo District
    Yesterday, around 12 pm, Ancuncion Choc, 85, of Santa Elena Village, Toledo District went to take a bath in the river. The river is located about 200 yards from his house. Around 1:15, Choc’s granddaughter went to look for him and found his clothes and soap […]

    Police investigating vehicle fire in Belmopan City
    Yesterday morning around 2:27, police responded to reports of a fire at the compound of Scotches Restaurant and Bar located on the Hummingbird Highway. Police found a 2002 white Mitsubishi Montero SUV engulf in flames. The fire personnel arrived shortly and extinguished the flames. Investigation reveals that […]

    Police find weed, ammo, and gun in Belize City
    On Sunday, Belize City police searched an open lot on East Collet Canal which led to the discovery a black plastic bag containing 112.2 grams of cannabis, a black extended magazine, a black 9mm Colt Brand pistol which was fitted with a black magazine. No […]

    6 persons detained for Orange Walk house shooting
    According to police reports, last night around 9:28, police visited San Victor Street in Orange Walk Town where they spoke to a person who reported that at about 9:25 p.m. while on the veranda of Lyndon Herrera’s resident with 2 men, a man ran in front of the yard […]

    Guatemalan businesswoman robbed in Belize City
    Vilma Ritilia Chep, 42, a Guatemalan businesswoman who resides in Belize City reported to police that on Sunday, June 18th 2017 about 3:45 a.m., while almost reaching her home, she felt someone hold her around her neck and demanded her belonging. The assailant searched her and […]

    Family of slain teen protest for justice
    Sixteen-year-old Emy Guerra was brutally murdered on Friday night in Santa Familia Village, Cayo. Guerra and her boyfriend Eliseo Bacab were at the football field in the village when they were attacked. Bacab was stabbed multiple times and went unconscious. According to information from […]

    Conflicting reports on arrest of Castro’s kids
    The Belize police Department has two alternate accounts of an arrest involving Jafari and Wasani Castro, the sons of Transport Minister Edmond Castro. Information leaked to the media showed reports entered into the Police Department’s Crime Information Management System (CIMS), showed that the Castros […]

    Belize~The BTIA and Tourism Workers
    By Richard Harrison: “The Belize Tourism Industry Association (BTIA) was formed on April 26, 1985 as a broad-based tourism umbrella organization, BTIA sought to bring together tourism related interests to meet the challenges of a dynamic and growing tourism industry in Belize. In the early 1980’s tourism […]

    The Castros and the Cops
    By Lisa Shoman: I’m a fan of the amazing work that Chester Williams has done on Southside Belize City. He is also a professional colleague of mine and I admire and appreciate that he has worked so hard to earn his credentials. I believe that the decision […]

    Blogs

    Fastest woman in Belize hosting 5th annual Track and Field games
    Belize’s most decorated female sprinter, Kaina Martinez, an 11-time All-American track athlete, 2-time NCAA Champion, Olympian, and Central American and Belize record holder for the 100-meter event, is hosting her 5th annual Kaina Martinez Track and Field games in July in the beautiful coastal village of Seine Bight in Stann Creek, Belize. Martinez, who currently attends Texas A&M University, has been hard at work on her education and developing her stellar skills on the track. She recently made a pair of top finishes in the women’s 100-meter and 200-meter dash events at the 2017 NCAA outdoor track and field championships at IMG Academy in Florida, USA. But beyond the accolades and recognition for her personal accomplishments, Martinez hosts the annual event in her hometown of Seine Bight in an effort to bring about positive change.

    Lets take “A Walk Through” Belize’s history
    The Belize we know today may not be hundreds of years old, yet we have so much history lying in wait in some of the most unexpected places. These historic landmarks have been cataloged in a pictorial series titled “A Walk Through”. The National Institute of Culture and History (NICH), through the Institute for Social and Cultural Research, the Museum of Belize and Houses of Culture, are the forces behind “A Walk Through”. With each new city, town and village explored through the series, new pieces beautiful Belize’s history are unearthed. The series is designed to provide educational and historical references for students, educators, tour guides, tourists and the general public. With the publication’s earlier volumes featuring Belize City, Dangriga, San Ignacio and Santa Elena, and most recently Benque Viejo del Carmen, our Belizean history hunters are already embarking on a new project! The next stop in the series: Orange Walk Town!

    10 interesting fun facts to know about Belize
    Did you know that Belize is the only country in Central America where the official language is English? Other languages spoken are Creole (Kriol), Spanish, Garifuna, and Mayan. My mother-in-law actually speaks Garifuna, and part of my daughters middle name comes from her language: Ibari meaning granddaughter. Garifuna is the only African language still spoken in the Western Hemisphere. Most people in Belize speak 2 to 3 languages (they are multilingual). Belize has the 2nd largest Barrier Reef in the world – the MesoAmerican Barrier Reef System. It is also known as the Great Mayan Reef. The first is the Great Barrier Reef in Queensland, Australia. It, like the Great Barrier Reef, are in danger of disappearing because of tourism, overfishing, and global warming. We must work together to save these amazing features of our planet Earth.

    Lesson's about the Ecosystem in Belize
    Thirty-six percent of Belize’s landmass enjoys protected status. Thirteen percent of its waters, including vast portions of the world’s second largest coral reef system, are protected as well. With tourism being one of the country’s top sources of revenue, Belize’s livelihood depends on nature. And while it is never easy to balance tourism growth with environmental preservation, the small Central American country has long recognized that ignoring the latter means betraying the former. Since the 1980s, the government has encouraged Belizeans to be stakeholders in their own tourism industry, occasionally supporting community-based projects, according to the travel book Insight Guides Belize. Because residents have a vested interest in protecting their own communities and environment, they are the natural leaders of the ecotourism charge.

    10 Reasons Why You Should Visit Belize
    1.) Belize is the only English Speaking Country in Central America Belize is a diverse society with many cultures and languages (Creole and Spanish are widely spoken) however English is the official language, making it easy for travelers to get around. 2.) Belizean food is tasty and succulent The food in Belize is as diverse as its population and consists of a vast array of elements from the different ethnic groups like the Garifuna, Maya, Mestizo, East Indian and Creole. Some of the top must eats are: Rice and Beans, Fry Jacks, Johnny Cakes, Stew Chicken, Gibnut, Escabeche, Tamales, Hudut, and Fish Sere.

    International Sourcesizz

    REIDsteel on the ball for £12.7million Belize sports center
    STEEL construction company REIDsteel has thrown its weight behind the multi-million dollar sports stadium in Belize. The company, based in Dorset, UK, has performed the structural design, drawing work and fabrication for the new national arena in Belize City. The $32.9m (Belize Dollars) complex – due for completion in December 2017 – will include international standard volleyball and basketball courts, stands, running tracks, a skateboard park, gym and football pitch.

    Police in Belize Arrest Three NCL Crew Members for Smuggling Cocaine
    7 News Belize reports that three NCL crew members were arrested in Belize for possession of two kilos of cocaine which was picked up in Roatan and taken on an unidentified NCL cruise ship to the private destination of Harvest Caye, apparently with the intention of being smuggled into the U.S. Smuggling cocaine is big business on the high seas. Two years ago, five NCL crew members on the Norwegian Sun were arrested in Tampa when the cruise ship returned from Roatan where the crew members picked up the drugs. The Tampa Bay Times reported that they worked for NCL as utility workers in the Norwegian Sun's galley. A few months later, a NCL crew member employed aboard the Norwegian Dawn cruise ship was arrested when he attempted to smuggle cocaine aboard the ship when it was docked in Roatan.

    Prince Williams turns 35
    The Duke of Cambridge is celebrating his 35th birthday. William, who attended Royal Ascot with the Duchess of Cambridge on Tuesday, is expected to spend the day privately with Kate and their children Prince George and Princess Charlotte. This year, the Duke is making some major changes to his life by becoming a full-time royal. He is due to finish his job as an air ambulance helicopter pilot later in the summer as the Cambridges leave the countryside for a life in the city.

    Caribbean countries convene in Belize for GCF regional dialogue
    Representatives from countries in the Caribbean region are in Belize for a four-day Green Climate Fund (GCF) regional meeting to advance collaboration with the Fund and accelerate access to its resources. Organized in partnership with the Government of Belize and the Caribbean Community Climate Change Centre (CCCCC), the GCF Structured Dialogue with the Caribbean kicked off on 19 June with a high-level session to put a spotlight on countries’ climate action plans with the Fund. With several ministers in attendance, participants learned of the challenges facing Caribbean nations as they grapple with the effects of climate change, such as sea-level rise and increased intensity and frequency of extreme weather events. Some of the barriers to an effective response, like limited fiscal space and private sector engagement, were highlighted to underscore the importance of GCF backing in the region.

    In demand and pricier than ever, lobster rolls have become the cupcakes of the sea
    Lobster, the emperor of crustaceans, is on a roll — a roll of near-record-high prices. A pound of picked lobster meat, the sweet, plump, exquisite ambrosia we like to cradle in a buttery split bun, requires more labor and as many as six lobsters to produce — and it sold for as much as $45 wholesale this spring compared with $17 three years ago. Celebrated Red’s Eats, close to the source in postcard-perfect Wiscasset, Maine, bills itself as the “World’s Best Lobster Shack.” Red’s is charging about $22.50 a roll, after the price soared to $26.50 in May, the highest Deborah Gagnon has seen in four decades of her family operating the business, due to “the extremely cold weather we had. People were wearing winter jackets in May!” Once sustenance for the poor and prisoners, lobsters constituted early American lunch meat. “Even in the harsh penal environment of early America, some colonies had laws against feeding lobsters to inmates more than once a week because it was thought to be cruel and unusual, like making people eat rats,” Wallace wrote in his 2004 Gourmet essay.

    Videos

  • Ministry of Foreign Affairs Launches Diaspora Website, 5.5min. Belizeans living abroad can now get more involved with what’s happening on the mainland thanks to the efforts of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and its Diaspora Program.

  • Amigos Del Mar, San Pedro, Belize, 4min.

  • BIG WESTLEY, Belize Oral History, 5min. In this "2 Cents Cam", we interview residents of Belize City to document the heritage and history of Big Westley.

  • Zip Lining in Belize, 6.5min.

  • Mule Park, Belize Oral History, min.

  • Diving in Belize (2017), 4min. Diving in Belize (2017). The Blue Hole, Sharks, Manatees, Rays, Dolphins, Morays..

  • Public Utilities Commission - Amendments to Electricity Act / Regulations, 32min.

  • Self Care & Teaching Profession, 19min.

  • KTV The Remix Returns Open Your Eyes Special, 15min.

  • House of Shotokan Academy - Summer Camp/Safety Tips for Children, 12min.

  • Rio Blanco Waterfalls Belize, 2min. Rio Blanco Falls is a series of waterfalls dropping 15-20 feet into a a deep pool. The park is a popular swimming and picnic spot for locals and tourists to search the Toledo District of Belize for recreational activities.

  • KTV the Remix (June 20, 2017), 1hr46min.

  • COMMUNITY RESTORE BELIZE STARTS 2017 PROGRAMS AND SPRUCED UP OFFICE, 5min.

  • Belice VS Costa Rica, 2hr.

  • Belize Participates in OAS Assembly, 1min.

  • Green Paradise: Belize Jungle and Coral, 26min. TV Documentary on Belize

  • Snorkeling in Belize shark ray alley and Hol Chan marine reserve, 11min. The Hol Chan Marine Reserve is only 4 miles southeast of San Pedro Town, Ambergris Caye, and straddles the Belize Barrier Reef. When it was established in 1987, the reserve was the first of its kind in Central America. Buoys mark the boundaries of the reserve and provide anchorage for boats. Since it is illegal to fish and/or collect coral within the reserve, marine life is present in healthy populations. Just a little further south of San Pedro Town, also in the Hol Chan Marine Reserve, is the famed Shark Ray Alley.

  • Caracol Belize 2002, Before They Dug It All Up, 15min. Cavers visit Caracol while the dig is heavily under way, and check a few pits while there.


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