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July 6, 2015

The news will be a bit brief for the next week or so due to time constraints


FOR TODAY'S BELIZE WEATHER, CLICK HERE

Click for our Daily Tropical Weather Report.

Specials and Events

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


The San Pedro Sun

Rays of Belize
Belizean waters are home to countless species of marine wildlife. Among the most common are our graceful rays. Popular dive and snorkel destinations off the coast of Ambergris Caye such as Shark Ray Alley and Hol Chan Marine Reserve boasts these beauties in abundance. A trip to any of these reserves give you the opportunity to not only see, but also swim among these critters in their natural habitat. There are thee main species of rays you can look out for when snorkeling, diving, or maybe just walking along the beach or pier. They are the Southern Stingrays, Spotted Eagle Rays, and Manta Rays. Belize is such a melting pot of cultures, and this even transcends to our marine critters! Just ask anyone about the Southern Rays and Nurse Sharks! But don’t take our word for it, see for yourself with a trip to Shark Ray Alley. These gentle rays are best buds with nurse sharks! Southern Rays are also often seen in shallow waters,meaning a simple stroll along the beach can almost guarantee you the chance of spotting the large rays catching some sun and grazing on plankton right near the shoreline.

Wolfe’s Woofer: Blind Date
“Do you know who would make a great couple?” Sherry asked. “No; I don’t,” I replied, “but I’ll bet you’re going to tell me.” She ignored my remark and said, “I just found out that Vince and Linda have never met even though both of them have lived on Ambergris Caye for several years.” “That’s […]

New Horizon SDA School Health Club Students Host Health Fair
Submitted by Peace Corp Volunteer Diana Sanchez On June 24th the Health Club at New Horizon SDA School held their first ever, school wide Health Fair. The Health Fair was free to the students and a lot of fun. The Health Club got its start with a collaboration between the Ministry of Health, the Quality […]

Doctor Love: Marriage
Readers, please send your letters. They can be emails, formal letters or handwritten notes. They are edited solely for grammar and spelling. Also, they are sometimes edited for length. Dear Doctor Love, I have been married for two years and I am getting unhappier all of the time. Me and my husband are always fighting […]

Misc Belizean Sourcesmzz

The People of My Mayan Village Exhibit
The People of My Mayan Village art exhibit is currently at the Benque HoC. They had the opening ceremony on Friday, and they got video of most of the paintings. There's some beautiful, and cultural, art there. Thanks go out to the Mexican Embassy for bringing this here. "The People of my Mayan Village Travelling Exhibitions is now at the Benque House of Culture, stop by and appreciate these beautiful masterpieces courtesy of the Mexican Embassy in Belize."

Rotaract 2015 Induction
The Rotaract Club of San Ignacio had their 2015 Induction, and it was a grand event. Best of luck to the incoming team! In related news, the Rotaract Club of Benque Viejo had their induction last week. Change the world! "Rotaract San Ignacio starts a new Rotary year with the theme 'Be a Gift to the World.' Guest Speaker Mr.Joe Awe, past Rotaractor gave an enlightening speech to motivate our young professional to continue working. This new Rotary year introducing our new Rotaract President: Manuel Matus, Vice-President: Carlos Waight, Treasurer: Anwar Juan, Secretary: Jiselle Awe. These are the highlights of the night that took place at San Ignacio Hotel. New Inductee and New Directors. International Director: Abbie Godoy, PR Director: Louie Godoy, Club Service: Ledell Lemoth, Professional Development: Yasel Acosta, Fundraising and Community Service: Jorge Ruiz. We thank the Rotaract Club of Benque Viejo and Rotaract Club Belmopan for attending, clubs looking forward in working together. We encourage others to join and Be a Gift to the World."

The Reporter

GOB too nonchelant about the economy, says BCCI
The Belize Chamber of Commerce and Industry (BCCI) is calling on the Government of Belize to take international warnings about the economy more seriously. This past week BCCI President, Arturo Vasquez, speaking on the latest warning by the International firm Moody’s that Belize needs fiscal policy amendments, said that GOB needs to consider the international implications of that kind of warning. “They should not be looked at and thrown aside”, Vasquez said. “I want to think that since these Moody’s reports are internationally read and reviewed, it can have a significant effect on your foreign direct investments.” Vasquez added that while he respects that GOB may have a different opinion on the country’s economic outlook, dismissing the reports is not an advisable stance to take.

Catholic Diocese breaks away
The Catholic Diocese has dissented from the Council of Churches’ decision to support the PetroCaribe Loans Act. Senator Representing the Churches, Fr. Noel Leslie, issued a release this week saying that while he votes as instructed by the Council, the Diocese does not support the Act and wants it repealed. “I am on record as having opposed the PetroCaribe Loans Act 2015 on Monday the 30th of March 2015,” Leslie said. “The Bishop of Belize and Belmopan, His Excellency Dorrick Wright, joins me in calling for a repeal of the PetroCaribe Loans Act and its amendments.” Leslie added that the Diocese is also calling on the Government of Belize to return to adhering to the principles outlined in the Finance and Audit Reform Act 2005. The Senate voted on and approved the Act on July 1. The majority of the senators voted yes with the exception of Opposition Senators Lisa Shoman, Patrick Andrews and Anthony Sylvester, along with Business Senator, Mark Lizarraga and temporary Union Senator, Adelaida Guerra all cast a “no” vote for the amendments, and it.

“Belize supports reparations”, says PM
Prime Minister Dean Barrow, this past week, affirmed government’s support for the Caribbean Community ( CARICOM)’s push for reparations for slavery from Europe. “There is a CARICOM initiative to seek reparations , and as a member of CARICOM we support that”, Barrow said. He added that if Belize is prepared to sign on to a convention, if one arises from the 36th Meeting of the CARICOM Heads of Government. Prime Minister of Barbados, Freundel Stuart, prior to the conference, said that reparations was definitely on the list of topics to discuss. Stuart underscored that the heads of government need to strategise how they will engage in meaningful discussions with the former slave-owning states. “What we want is to discuss a way forward in terms of development of this region”, Stuart said, “in the context of under-development which has resulted from slavery itself.”

Breaking Belize NewsPJ

Jerome Smith shot in Belize City
Belize City Police responded to reports of a shooting incident at Buttonwood Bay Park at around 10:10 p.m on Friday, July 3rd, where they saw Jerome Smith, a resident of the Buttonwood Bay Area, Belize City, sitting on top of bleachers and bleeding from what appeared to be gunshot wounds. […]

Couple shot in Belize City; boyfriend dies
A young couple was socializing on Friday night in Belize City when they came under attack from gunfire. On Saturday, July 4, 21 year old David Steven Reveres of La Croix Boulevard died in hospital, while his 16 year old girlfriend, Shannalyn Augustine of Alvarez Street, sustained injuries from which […]

Belize City man stabbed while sleeping
A Belize City man received an unpleasant surprise on waking up early on Friday morning. According to Craig Street resident Albert Leiva, Sr., he had gone to sleep around 2:00 in the morning on June 3. About an hour later, he awoke to extreme headache and dizziness. Upon sitting up […]

Police detain older man in Juana Cardinez death
Police have detained a 55 year old man of Punta Gorda Town pending investigation into the death of Juana Alberta Cowo Cardinez, 29. Cardinez’s body was discovered by police around 7:15 Friday morning on the bedroom floor in her apartment at the corner of King and Jose Maria Nunez Streets […]

Man gets electrocuted in Spanish Lookout
Information reaching our newsroom is that an employee of Farmers Light Plant Corporation LTD in Spanish Lookout got electrocuted yesterday afternoon while he was working on an electric power plant. According to our sources, the man is in a critical condition in Flores, Peten and will mostly likely be flown […]

Blogs

Caves and Waterfalls With Mystic River Resort and Not Just Any Caves – ATM!
Travelling in Belize doesn’t take much…a pair of shorts or two…multiples changes of shirts, some flip-flops and bug spray, numerous bandanas for just about every reason and…voile. Ready to roll. But I was headed out to Cayo…the jungle. And I knew one of the most popular tours at Mystic River was the ATM Cave. THE ATM CAVE! Better throw in an old pair of sneakers. But…UGH…I was scared. One of the top 10 caves in the world. One of the most talked about tours in Belize (rivaled MAYBE by the Great Blue Hole). A sacrificial site that can only be reached with a 40 minute (flat) hike and then a mile hike/climb/swim underground to see the Crystal Maiden. When you go in, you will see why. It is absolutely amazing…you honestly CAN NOT BELIEVE you should be in there. Take a few steps…look down and there is a bone or a piece of pottery.

International Sourcesizz

Belizean sustainable fisher receives award
Since she was seven years old, Anna Ramirez, now 63, has been fishing with her family off the coast of Belize’s southernmost district – Toledo, but her gender has not stopped her from working just as hard as the men do while at sea. Her most challenging moments have involved braving the rough seas, even under the threat of hurricanes, to ensure they make it to shore safely. “It’s not easy. You have to be brave and willing to take chances – big chances too!” she said. “The same way a man could fish, you can. The same way they drive an engine, you could do it too. The same way they could throw a net, you could throw a net!” Anna says. “It’s the way they raised me,” she later explained. Mrs. Ramirez has three brothers and seven sisters, and like her brothers—Carlos, Daniel, Eugenio—she took up fishing for a living. She is the daughter of Francisco Castellanos and Petrona Flores, who once lived on several islands off the coast of southern Belize, including Punta Ycacos, Punta Negra and Wilson Caye.

Videos

  • Feeding Jaguars at the Belize Zoo, 5min.

  • Belize summer 2015, 5min. Summer Trip to the Belize Summer 2015.

  • A Taste of My Belize Adventure, 2min. VERY AMAZING.

  • San Mateo Belize, 5min. 9 year old filmmaker Gigi Harris shares the difficult living conditions in San Mateo, Belize. This film won 1st place in category Documentary, Division II, at the 2010 Reel Spirit Young Filmmakers Showcase, the Youth Division of Kansas City Film Fest. This film also earned a "REEL Inspiration Award for Making a Difference".

  • Welcome to Belize, 6min.

  • Tikal e Belize, 13min. Nessa edição irei mostrar as Ruínas Maias de Tikal e as belíssimas praias caribenhas de Belize, especificamente na Ilha de Caue Cauker.

    July 5, 2015

    The news will be a bit brief for the next week or so due to time constraints


    FOR TODAY'S BELIZE WEATHER, CLICK HERE

    Click for our Daily Tropical Weather Report.

    Specials and Events

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


    The San Pedro Sun

    It’s an Island We Have to Keep Clean!
    Amidst the usual children playing on the jungle-gym and tourists sun-bathing on the beach, a different group gathered at the Boca Del Rio Park, Tuesday, June 30th with a purpose other than playing or relaxing. Their purpose? Cleaning up! Members of the community along with missionaries from the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints united their efforts to help make the park and surrounding areas even more beautiful. Armed with gloves and garbage bags, they went out to serve – picking up trash along the way. Community member Marlene Coral said of the activity, “It was fun! I would do it again!” Missionaries organized the project as part of a church activity “San Pedro Service Week,” a week full of activities designed to get the community excited about serving others. Other planned activities include visiting the elderly, making cards for the sick, and a youth-focused service night. Maria de Leon also loved the activity, saying, “I feel happy and satisfied because we gave service where we live. It’s an island we have to keep clean!”

    Fun and learning with Coral Reef Ed-Ventures 2015
    The Hol Chan Marine Reserve and Coral Reef Ed-ventures has once again started providing children with an educational summer camp on the marine ecosystem of Ambergris Caye. The program is done in collaboration with students from Smith College in Massachusetts, USA. This year six students have travelled to San Pedro to be counsellors for the summer program. The first phase of the program took place at the San Pedro High School and involved children aged 12 and above. The second part of the program is taking place at the San Pedro Roman Catholic Primary School (SPRCS) from 9am to noon, and features children ages7-12. At the end of the camp, the children are expected to be well acquainted with the reef ecology and conservation. Children between the ages of 7-12 started their program on Monday, June 29th. The Coral Reef Ed-ventures counsellors will be taking the children through several topics that will cover the conservation and development of the local marine habitats. Topics being explored are the coral reef, deep sea, mangroves and respect for the environment.

    Misc Belizean Sourcesmzz

    Kids Yoga Summer Classes
    Kids Summer Yoga Classes will start on the 13th of July, and run through the 7th of September. They'll be held at the Manzanero Mall, at the Full Lotus Yoga Studio. "Classes are on Mondays and Wednesdays ages 4-7 @ 2pm-2:45 and ages 7-12 @ 3pm- 3:45. Kids yoga runs during the summer for two months only so please pass this along to anyone that might be interested. July 13th to Sep 7th with a group yoga party at the end of the camp open to all ages, even parents. $6 per class, $10 for the week, or unlimited classes for $75 per child for the duration of the camp* *partial or full scholarships are available, please request an application or see Sera to apply"

    EL Pilar For Birding
    El Pilar might be in the news a lot because of the discovery of the new 'citadel,' and it's always been a great spot for birding. "A particularly intriguing feature is a causeway that extends from the eastern part of the ruins across the country border into Guatemala. Thus far, 12 pyramids and 25 plazas have been found at El Pilar. This is triple the number found in nearby sites such as Xunantunich and Cahal Pech. The site was occupied between (500 BC) and (1000 AD) periods. A variety of residential structures were discovered during excavations, in addition to elite household compounds and ceremonial structures. In contrast to other nearby sites, El Pilar remains virtually the same way today as when it was discovered. Most structures are in the early stages of excavation. Currently there are five trail systems at El Pilar, three archeological and two primarily nature trail intended to provide insight into the agro-forestry of the ancient Maya. This provides the visitor with a sense of what the site looked like before archeologists began their research on the area. The site and its surrounding vegetations make a perfect birding destination."

    Sights of the BAAS 2015
    NICH's Institute of Archaeology had this year's Belize Archaeology and Anthropology Symposium, which ran from Tuesday to Friday. This year's BAAS was streamed live. Mark your calendars for next year.

    The Reporter

    CARICOM summit begins with calls for focus on youth and perfecting regional integration
    Outgoing CARICOM chairman, Bahamas Prime Minister Perry Christie, urged his colleague leaders to pay more attention to the educating and employing young people. He also made a call for more emphasis to be placed on teaching methodologies to meet the learning needs of the bottom 50 per cent of students in the school system. “Chief amongst my concerns and that of The Bahamas is the future of the young people of ourregion and our country . . . They are last in and first out in any crisis,” Christie said as he addressed the opening ceremony of the 36th Meeting of the Conference of Heads of Government of CARICOM Thursday evening, adding that the region’s youth are “looking to us to help secure their future and dispel their sense of hopelessness”. “We cannot surrender them to crime and criminality . . . It is our responsibility to ensure that they get a good education, become part of the formal economies of our countries and become beneficiaries of the practice of social mobility, equity and fairness,” he said.

    Police say PG labour officer was murdered
    Police have determined that 29-year-old Juana Cardinez, a labour officer and resident of Punta Gorda, was murdered. The pathologist ruled, from the findings of a post mortem examination, that her cause of death was hemorrhaging to due to stab wounds to the neck. Officer commanding the Punta Gorda police formation, Superintendent Simeon Alvarez, said that police believe that the assailant was someone that Cardinez was familiar with. Cardinez, who had been reported missing by her ex-commonlaw husband Alberto Coleman, was discovered in the bathroom of her apartment at the corner of King and Jose Maria Nunez streets, already beginning to decompose. Police had to get help from the fire department to enter the house. Investigators have since detained a 55-year-old man from PG in connection with the incident.

    Belizean athletes ready for Pan Am Games
    A delegation of Belizean athletes are preparing to represent the country in the upcoming 17th Pan American Games. The delegates leave for Toronto, Canada on Wednesday to participate in the Athletics and Triathlon events. The delegation will be headed by Chief of Mission, Allan Sharp. The contingent consists of triathlete Amed Figueroa, Athletics delegate Deon Sutherland, Kaina Martinez and Mark Anderson who will both be doing the 100m. The event, which is the third largest multi-sport competition in the world will run from July 10-26. The triathlon takes place from the 11th -12th and A athletics from the 21st – 25th. Forty-one countries will compete in 36 disciplines at the event, which is held once every four years. 5he events include: archery, judo, golf, cycling, boxing, basketball, and bowling.

    Belizean delegation at CARICOM meeting
    Three top level government officials are in Barbados representing Belize at the Thirty-Sixth Meeting of the Conference of Heads of Government of the Caribbean Community The Minister oforeign Affairs Wilfred Elrington, his Chief Executive Officer Lawrence Sylvester, and the CEO in the Prime Minister’s office Audrey Wallace, left Belize earlier this week for the conferee, which runs from July 2-3 At the conference the heads of government discussed topics such as food security, regional energy programmes, crime and the regional push for reparations from European nations. The conference is set to end on the eve of the 42nd anniversary of the signing of Treaty of Chaguramas on July 4 1973, which established the community. Apart from being a party to the original treaty, Belize also signed the revised treaty in 2001 which established the CARICOM single market economy. The directorate of foreign trade in the ministry of Ministry of Trade, Investment Promotion, Private Sector Development and Consumer Protection, held a weeks worth activities this week to commemorate the signing of the treaty.

    Breaking Belize NewsPJ

    Senator for the Churches issues position on the PetroCaribe Loan Acts 2015
    This evening, Rev. Father Noel Leslie, Senator for the Churches issued a press release explaining to the nation the position of the Roman Catholic Church of Belize regarding the PetroCaribe Loan Acts 2015. According to Rev. Father Noel Leslie, he has an obligation to vote in accordance with the majority […]

    Ministry of Natural Resources inaugurates garbage transfer station
    An initiative established several years ago has changed the collection and disposal of garbage from across the central corridor of Belize – the islands, Belize City, Belmopan and San Ignacio. The Belize Solid Waste Management Authority has overseen the construction of multiple transfer stations where garbage is collected and sorted […]

    Minister accuses Maya of undermining court order
    Senator Lisel Alamilla, the Minister for Forestry, Fisheries and Sustainable Development, has accused Maya leaders of undermining the court order issued by the Caribbean Court of Justice in May concerning what rights they hold over lands within and surrounding the Maya communities of the Toledo District. According to the Senator, […]

    Haiti complains of mistreatment of “foreign” Dominican citizens
    According to the Haiti Sentinel, the Dominican Republic has violated certain protocols for the deportation and return of “foreign” citizens, particularly Haitians. The two countries share the land mass of Hispaniola in the middle Caribbean, and according to the Sentinel the Dominican Republic decided several months ago to retroactively “denationalize” […]

    Plenty of dry weather this weekend
    The National Met. Service of Belize is calling for mostly dry weather for the next 24 hours. The 24 hour forecast is for sunny conditions with only a few cloudy spells today and partly cloudy tonight, only isolated showers or isolated thunderstorms are expected to occur. The wind blows at […]

    PUP National Party Council Holds Meeting in Dangriga
    The PUP National Party Council is currently holding a meeting in Dangriga to prepare for the upcoming bye-election that is scheduled for Wednesday, July 8th 2015. According to our sources, the national party council is also passing resolutions on national issues that are affecting the country like crime, poverty, nepotism […]

    Channel 5 hails Castro victory for “whistleblowers”
    Elsewhere we have covered the sudden discontinuance of Minister of State Edmond Castro’s defamation case against Alvarene Burgess and Great Belize Productions/Television (Channel 5). Yesterday the television station released a statement, which stated, “Great Belize Productions/Channel Five believes that it has been vindicated in this high profile case […]

    Jury finds Donicio Salazar not guilty of murder
    A third trial against Donicio “Life” Salazar of San Ignacio concluded Thursday evening with a unanimous verdict of not guilty of either murder of manslaughter following near seven hours of deliberation by a jury of six men and six women in the courtroom of Chief Justice Kenneth Benjamin. […]

    Ministry of Education promotes positive discipline in schools
    School may be out for the July-August break but that doesn’t mean teachers are taking it easy. A two-day workshop to train trainers in implementing models of positive discipline in schools concluded today in Belize City. The genesis of this workshop lies in the decision of the Ministry […]

    Belize City restaurant to offer special sauce in market
    Belize City residents are familiar with the fast food stand known as Fibbers on Cemetery Road. They sell a variety of fast foods for reasonable prices, but the real attraction over their 12 years in business has been their uniquely special sauce. It is more than just a […]

    International Sourcesizz

    Will Cuba change Caricom?
    The agreement between Cuba and the United States to reopen or establish embassies in their respective capitals concretises the resumption of diplomatic relations and it portends the eventual full normalisation of relations. Many believe that normal relations are still far in the future because of the continued application of the Helms-Burton Act and the Republican control of the US Congress. Yet, the lessons of US political history show that the change could happen overnight. Few foresaw that normalisation would have proceeded to where it is at this time. A Republican administration could reverse its traditional stance because the Cuban vote in Miami is no longer a determining factor in winning the state, and indeed, the new generation of Cuban-Americans are not interested in returning to Cuba. Many favour normal relations with Cuba so that they can come and go freely to their ancestral home. In addition, the corporate lobby, particularly the exporters of agricultural products, has been pressing to open the Cuban market. The American business community is salivating at investment opportunities in Cuba and as an export market.

    Videos

  • Descent into the Blue Hole, Belize, 9min.

  • OATS - Route of the Maya - Day 13 --- 11/04/13, 44min. Last full day on this Mayan Adventure Trip ... After breakfast at our hotel in Belize City, We travel by boat to visit the Mayan ruins at "Lamanai" ... Later returned to our hotel for farewell drinks and trip highlights discussion and gifts from Vinney... Then off to our Farewell Dinner at Celebrities Restaurant in Belize City

  • Project Belize - Bonefish, 6min. A video highlighting a recent BTT research mission to Belize to tag and release Bonefish. Belize may have jungle ruins, exotic animals and amazing reefs, but it also has some of the best flats fishing in the world.

  • Swimming with dolphins in Belize, 1/2min.

  • Nicole's Belize Gel Trip 2015, 8min.

  • FSX CROSSWIND LANDING B747 KLM BELIZE, 6min.

  • Project Belize - Bonefish, 8min.

    July 4, 2015

    The news will be a bit brief for the next week or so due to time constraints


    FOR TODAY'S BELIZE WEATHER, CLICK HERE

    Click for our Daily Tropical Weather Report.

    Specials and Events

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


    The San Pedro Sun

    Belize Bird Rescue Avian Rehabilitation Centre & Bird Sanctuary – Caring for our Feathered Friends
    he country of Belize is blessed with a bounty of beautiful animals. Some may be rare and exotic, some may be as common as an iguana, but regardless of who the creature may be, it is safe to say that in a time of need there is most likely an organization in the country ready to come to its rescue. Many of these non-profit organizations originated from a series of serendipitous circumstances that changed the lives of their founders forever, and more often than not it was the animals who found them…not the other way around! Such is the story behind the Belize Bird Rescue (BBR) Avian Rehabilitation Centre & Bird Sanctuary. Founded in 2004 by Nikki Buxton and Jerry Larder, the British couple originally moved to Belize from Trinidad with the goal of retiring. They purchased several acres in the Roaring Creek area just outside of Belmopan and were ready to relax and enjoy the good life of country living when fate slowly redirected their plans. As chance would have it, locals were bringing Nikki injured animals in hopes that she could treat them. Over time, and with a lot of research, she became quite good at fixing up injured birds, housing surrendered parrots and rehabilitating proper candidates for wild release. It wasn’t long before her lovely countryside property started sprouting habitats and aviaries for these wayward birds.

    SPBRC holds second Blood Drive of the year
    On Saturday, June 27th, the San Pedro Belize Red Cross (SPBRC) held it second blood drive of the year. A collaboration with the Dr. Otto Rodriguez San Pedro Polyclinic II and the Belize Blood Bank, SPBRC strives to build the islands blood supply. While the blood drive was not as successful as the previous, a

    Pageant Kicks of 21st Caye Caulker Lobster Fest
    The Caye Caulker Lobsterfest is a celebration that Belizeans and tourists look forward to each year. For some it may be the weekend of party they enjoy the most, while for others it is the amazing food, but no one will deny the most anticipated part of the festival is the Miss Lobster Fest Pageant!

    Caps, Gowns and Diplomas: Preschoolers Graduate
    San Pedro continues to celebrate education with graduation ceremonies across the island. Over the past week, the last primary school held commencement exercises, along with five out of the six island preschools. The first toddlers to graduate were those from Holy Cross Anglican Preschool (HCAP) on Wednesday, June 24th. This was their second graduation class

    Caribbean Villas to host LGBT Pride Event
    Caribbean Villas Hotel in San Pedro is gearing up to host the first Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, and Transgender (LGBT) Pride Week from September 5th to the 12th. The event, which will be the first of its kind in Belize’s history has been dubbed as the largest ever and has been tagged with the name “Temptation

    Football Marathon kicks off five-a-side Football Tournament
    Hundreds of football fanatics attend the opening of the Island Citizens Sporting Club (ICSC) Five-a-side Football Tournament on Sunday, June 28th. Held at the Angel Nuñez Auditorium, organizers held an all-day football marathon to showcase the skills of all the participating teams. Games started from 10AM and went through till about 9PM. At the end […]

    Ambergris Today

    Hon. Manuel Heredia Awards Top Island PSE Students
    Three island students were awarded $500.00 each and a plaque from Hon. Manuel Heredia Jr., Minister of Tourism, Culture and Civil Aviation and Area Representative of Belize Rural South, for having scored the highest grades in the Primary School Examination (PSE) in San Pedro and Caye Caulker. Betty Alpuche and Shanelly Gutierrez of the San Pedro Roman Catholic School tied with the highest score on the island, scoring 91.3, while Tristan Magana of Caye Caulker Elementary school scored an 88.5. Checks in the amount of $500 were presented to the children and their parents to assist them with supplies and books for the new school year at the high school level on Thursday, July 2, 2015, at the BTB office in San Pedro, Ambergris Caye. In attendance at the ceremony were Minister Heredia, parents of the children, Ms. Emelda Rosado a Councilor of Caye Caulker Village, Mr. Wayne Miller the Chairman of Caye Caulker Village and Ms. Adelita Verde Vice Principal of Caye Caulker Elementary School. After the short ceremony, the children and parents joined the Minister for lunch.

    Learn How to ‘Tippy Toe’ at Costa Maya with Rising Star El Chevo
    The International Costa Maya Festival is organizing a high-energy event with a program of entertainers to suite everybody’s taste. Already announced for Saturday night, August 8, 2015, is the romantic Grupo Ladron to close the festival with a bang on International Night. But this year it seems that every night of the festival will be an international night filled with entertainment from all over the region. This week the festival committee announces the performance of rising artist El Chevo from Honduras, but has an impressive lineup of high-energy music that he calls ‘Electo Punta’. Friday Night will ignite with El Chevo who is becoming well known in the US market as he has teamed up with Sensato and other famous international artists. Just listen to his songs – Que lo Que, Metela Sacala and Fiesta (links below) and you will start dancing. Plus learn to dance his newest hit ‘Tippy Toe’; it’s contagious.

    Misc Belizean Sourcesmzz

    Inauguration of the San Pedro Transfer Station
    Ministry of Natural Resources and Agriculture and the Solid Waste Management Authority hosted the inauguration of the San Pedro Transfer Station located on the Marina Drive by the D.F.C. Area. After the invocation given by Pastor Clive Welsh, Mayor Daniel Guerrero welcomed everyone to the inagural event where he expressed his gratitude for the realisation of the project and shared briefly the evolution of waste disposal in San Pedro Town. Following the Mayor's address, Deputy Mayor Gary Greif approached the podium and stated that the completion of this project will be one that will benefit the island, especially for the tourism industry as people flying over the island will no longer see the plume of smoke from the burning garbage from the dump site. Hon. Manuel Heredia Jr., Minister of Tourism, Culture & Civil Aviation, also shared how the evolution of garbage disposal in San Pedro has moved on so rapidly due to the rapid growth and development of the island. He remembers how the area where he currently resides was once a garbage disposal site when San Pedro was a fishing village.

    Power interruption 5:00am to 7:00am, Sunday, July 5: entire San Pedro Town, Ambergris Caye
    BEL to replace protective device at Maskall Substation.

    https://www.pinterest.com/pin/216102482097148805/
    The SISE House of Culture is having a Summer workshop for kids ages 8 to 15 next week. Kids will learn how to make art from 'up-cycled trash' with bottle caps and the like. Thanks, NICH!

    CACHE Cultural Theme Competition
    CACHE is having a Theme Competition for the International Festival of Culture. The theme should relate to culture and community, and is open to kids between 12 and 18 years old. The deadline is the 31st of July. In related news, the CACHE Cafe has been painted, and looks really nice. Ready for the Summer and September festivities. "Notice!!!!! to all those that are between the ages 12 and 18 years old. We are having a Theme Competition for the International Festival of Culture held in the month of December. If there are any question please feel free to contact Mr. Ricky Cunil at 604-4048 or email him at Ricky.cunil@gmail.com. LOTS of complimentary Prices will be given to all those submitting Their Themes. Due Date July 31, 2015."

    Beach Rave at Playa del Cayo
    The Beach Rave at Playa del Cayo was a blast. Everyone had a great playing on the beach and getting foamed. Can't wait for the next one. The 501 Boyz got some great pictures of the event. Pictures on fb.

    Channel 7

    Quite Unexpectedly, Castro Drops Lawsuit Against Ch 5 & Alvarine Burgess
    In a recent Belize Rural North convention, UDP Minister of State Edmond Castro proved his popularity when supporters turn rout in record numbers to support him. But while he still enjoys popularity in the 27 villages between Bomba and Boom, in the wider society, his public image has taken a pounding over the last 18 months. And today, he can add one more humiliation to that meltdown: he threw in the towel on the libel case against Channel 5 and Alvarine Burgess - and, to boot, he has to pay their 30,000 dollars in legal bills. Oral arguments in the case were supposed to start this morning, but before that could happen, Justice Abel called both parties into his chambers and essentially indicated that he does not consider the case presented by Castro to be strong and prevailed on him to withdraw, lest he face an adverse judgment. After due consultation, Williams presented the motion to discontinue the case. It's kind of like a technical knockout in boxing - where Castro didn't leave the ring on a stretcher, but his reputation is certainly battered and bruised. That's because Alvarine Burgess who made the allegation of corruption against Castro, stuck to her guns when she testified in May, insisting that Castro had taken money to recommend unknown Asian nationals to come to Belize. Under cross examination, Castro was forced to admit that he had done everything except take money.

    Furious Over The Santa Cruz 13; The Mayans Go Back To The CCJ
    Ever since the 13 Mayans of Santa Cruz Village were arraigned at the Punta Gorda Magistrate Court, they and their sympathizers within the communities have been quietly simmering with outrage. They believe that they were justified in detaining Rupert Myles for building in their village without the permission of their leaders. Moreover, they say that he squatted on land near their Uxbenka Archaeological Site, and destroyed a portion of it when he bulldozed road access to his house. They say that the detention was the very last resort that they wanted to take, but it was Myles' arrogant and allegedly violent attitude toward their concerns which left them with no other choice. Myles, on the other hand, has asserted that the Chairman of the village, displayed racist attitudes toward his attempts to get a legitimate permit though the communal system to be granted access to the village. He says that the chairman openly offended him by asserting that his common-law wife, who is a Mayan Native of Santa Cruz, would not be welcomed back because she had become the spouse of a Creole man, a non-Mayan. What followed after, as viewers are well-informed, was that the situation came to a head with Myles' detention, and their subsequent criminal prosecution of his 13 by the police for the charge of

    Why Raid Santa Cruz Before Dawn?
    So, what do Punta Gorda Police have to say about this allegation from the Mayans that they were brutalized and roughly handled by the officers who conducted their detention on that day? Well, on the day of the arraignment, we approached all the commanders of the south who were present, but they told us that they couldn't speak on the matter. This time around, when we asked again, Superintendent Simeon Alvarez was willing to oblige us. He explained what happened that day, from the police's perspective: Supt. Simeon Alvarez - OC, Punta Gorda Police "That operation was led by my deputy at that time, Inspector Ornel Domingez. We decided to go around that time because we knew that all players were farmers. These farmers usually go early to farm and if we go there broad daylight we would not have caught up with them. So I recommend as the officer, commanding that we move around that specific time. And with the assistance of police officers from Dangriga. We went into the area and we brought in everybody. Once they were in custody, nobody complained of any injuries to them. Nobody complained of any pain or damages done to them by the police.

    How Outsiders Get Accepted Into Mayan Communities
    Ever since the story broke, and the Mayans have insisted that they did not discriminate against Ruperto Myles, and that he was not being forced out of the village for being an outsider, much less being of a different race. He has stuck to his version of events, but that has given the Mayans a bad public image, one which they say that they don't deserve. Present at today's press confirmed in Golden Stream Village, was a number of Alcaldes from other villages, and one of them felt compelled to set the record straight as to how all non-Mayans - or any person who is not a member of a village - is granted access to reside there. Here's his explanation of the procedure: Ligorio Coy - Alcalde, Santa Ana Village "First, if any one of us the Maya people want, for example, if I want to go to live in Santa Elena, I must consult with the Alcalde and he will set me date when he will called his public meeting and then it is the community to decide whether they accept me or not. If they accept me, there is an entrance fee that you need to pay. Not only that, there are rules and laws in the community - free practices that we do in the community. We have fahina, we don't get paid for that. We have burial of our dead loved ones.

    Young Woman Found Dead In Her PG Home; Police Say Murder
    There was a murder in Punta Gorda Town of 29 year-old woman. Juana Cardinez was discovered early this morning in her Apartment on the outskirts of the town. Her throat was cut, and there was signs that she had been dead for more than 24 hours. We managed to speak with the Commanding Officer of the Punta Gorda Police, who provided additional details as they are known to the investigators at this time. He said that she was reported missing on Wednesday: Supt. Simeon Alvarez - OC, Punta Gorda Police "Sometime around 3:45pm Alberto Coleman, 55 years old, ex-common law husband, for one Juana Cardinez, 29 years old, came and made a report for her missing. Reported at the last time, she was seen alive was around 6:45pm. He made checks at her apartment which is situated at the corner of the Jose Maria Nunez St. and King St. However, nobody responded to his call. The police took note of the information and around 7:15am this morning, the police continued the investigation because we made several calls to her phone yesterday. It rang out and no response. So we went with the assistance of the member from the Fire Department, we checked her apartment because stenches was coming from inside the building according to the police that first went on the scene. So as a result of that, they broke open the apartment and there they saw the lifeless body of a female, who was later identified to be Juana Cardinez. She was in the second room and apparently with some injuries from the head. Blood was coming from that particular area. The scene was processed and taken to Punta Gorda hospital where she was pronounced dead by the doctor on duty."

    The Turneffe Six Arraigned
    This evening, the 6 men who the coast guard caught Wednesday on Turneffe Caye with a gun were taken to court. As we told you, 21-year-old Everon Teck, 43-year-old Emilio Camara, 29-year-old Geovanni Murillo, 52-year-old Goldburn Goff, 21-year-old Dion Usher, and 33-year-old Jerome Bowen were on Turneffe Island on Wedneday when a Coast Guard team decided to search their camp. They found a gun, a number of bullets, a small quantity of drugs, and 183 undersized lobster. In court, Deon Usher took ownership of the 183 undersized lobsters. He was fined $100 for the offense, the minimum imposed of a $500 penalty fine, and an additional $20 for each undersized lobster which added up to almost $4,000 in fines. Since he pleaded guilty to this fisheries offense, the charge was withdrawn from the other men.

    Placencia Police Finds Gun
    Another gun was also seized in the south. On Friday 3rd June 2015 at about 11:55 am, based on information received, police proceeded to the Crimson Park area. Upon arrival, police made checks within an area, and at about three feet from the road side, they found a black plastic bag which contained a 9mm caliber pistol, Taurus Brand with 5 magazines four of which was empty and one inside the firearm. Because no one was in the area, it was deposited as found property.

    The Education Reform: Positive Behavioral Intervention
    Positive Behavioral Interventions: That was the main topic of today's education forum. It was held at the Radisson this morning and the discussion centered on setting behavioral expectations for kids and properly reinforcing them to promote positivity and social and emotional growth in children. Today the general and local mangers met a today's forum to discuss these expectations and to find ways to weave this initiative into the existing educational framework - all with the hope of enhancing the child's educational experience. Candy Armstrong, Director - Education Support Service "This is for general managers, local managers and others resource persons that supports the school management, in terms of implementing a positive behavior, intervention and support systems in primary schools." Courtney Weatherburne "Could you delve deeper into the system?" Candy Armstrong, Director - Education Support Service "Ok, the system is a pro-active and a preventative approach to school discipline. So it basically forms the foundation and the concepts of teachers or schools having clearer expectations for student's behavior. Those expectations are taught and then students are supported or they are targeted in the intervention for those students who are challenged meeting behavior expectations. It includes things like having a team of persons who work with the school to help them implement the system.

    Protest In Front of La Immaculada Credit Union
    There was protest yesterday in Orange Walk. Disgruntled La Inmaculada Credit Union members walked along with their signs and placards in front of the establishment. Now, why are the protesting? Well, on May 8th the Board of Directors put the General Manager - Yolanda Gomez on administrative leave and apparently did so without explanation or consultation with the members. That's what's got the members heated and they decided to make their voices heard in the streets yesterday. With the help of our colleagues at CTV3 - we have hear from Union members - they are demanding answers to the fate of their general manager and the future of union. Salome August (Credit Union 9) "I used to work at the credit union. I am a member of the credit union. In trying to tell the public to stand up. Let's stand up strong. Let's stand up for what is right. Let's get the answers that the people, the public are asking for. Don't stand for intimidation. The staff members are intimidated. I was one but I stood up and because I stood up I lost my job. Let's come together. Let's make the change. Let's make the right decision."

    Track Athletes Brought Back Medals
    The Central American Track and Field Senior Championships were held in Managua Nicaragua last weekend. Eighteen senior athletes represented Belize at the tournament and brought home a total of 13 medals. Those included 3 gold, 5 silver and 5 bronze medal. The group returned home yesterday by road and today 7news caught up with some of the athletes at the Marion Jones Stadium. The team is now getting ready to participate in the World Youth Games that will be taking place in Cali Columbia on July 16 to the 19th.

    Belize City: Nachos World
    Nachos - they're a combination of pretty much the best foods out there, and there's a new restaurant which caters to that only. We found why today when we visited Nacho World in Belize City. With a menu packed to capacity with just about everything on it, we had a chance to try something new: The owners of Nacho World plans on venturing off in the districts.

    The Fibbers Sauce, Now for Sale
    And if nachos isn't your thing how about a new sauce? You are probably accustomed to spreading ketchup or even BBQ sauce over fries, in your burgers and among other food selections but there is a new multi-purpose Belizean sauce that you can spread or glaze over anything. We found out from the Co-owners of Fibbers Sauce today what sets their sauce apart. It is available everywhere in the country.

    The Colors Rave Party; Straight Out Of Miami
    There is a new kind of party coming to Belize for the first time. It's called the Miami Colors Day Rave. DJ's and artists from Miami and New York will be coming to Belize to showcase just how they "Gwaff" at a Bashment. For this party - sure it's about the music, the performances and not to mention the liquor but it's also about hyping the place up with bright colors. Today we spoke with one of the DJ's and he told us why you all can't miss this one. The Colors Rave party will be held this Sunday from 3 to 12 midnight. Kids pa $3 and adults pay $10. There is also a special party deal. The party will be taken to Bahamas next week.

    A Summer Camp For Up-And-Coming DJ's
    For most of you kids: Schools out! And there are a numbers of summer camps you can enroll in to keep you entertained and busy for the long break. We already told you about the Lake Independence Sports Camp but if sports isn't really for you then - maybe you can join the DJ summer camp where you can learn about the basics and at the same time just enjoy the beats. The coordinator came to our studios this morning and he told us more. The camp starts on the 20th of this month and will run until the 14thof August. Girls and boys are invited. It will be held at the Department of Youth services and if you want to sign up you can call Lindy D at 602-1445 or pick application forms at the Dept of Youth services office. This is the 2nd year this camp is being held.

    Channel 5

    Minister Castro Drops Bombshell & Lawsuit
    There is monumental news coming out of the Supreme Court – a legal and political bombshell which burst all over Minister of State Edmond Castro. In late 2013, Castro had [...]

    Channel 5 & Alvarene Burgess Vindicated
    Alvarene Burgess made two appearances on Channel Five – an interview played in the news and an appearance on the Dickie Bradley talk-show. During those appearances she described in explicit [...]

    Release Claims Victory for Whistleblowers
    Following the withdrawal of the case by the Minister of State, Great Belizeans Productions/Channel Five issued a statement saying that it has been vindicated in this high profile case because [...]

    Maya Leaders Converge in Toledo
    Maya leaders converged today in Golden Stream, Toledo, in solidarity with the Santa Cruz Thirteen. The gathering is their first since the arrest of Cristina Coc and twelve other Maya [...]

    Bus-Owner is Prime Suspect in PG Murder
    After being reported missing by her boyfriend to police earlier this week, the motionless body of twenty-nine-year-old Juana Cardinez, a public officer working out of the Labor Department in Punta [...]

    Guatemalan Fugitive Detained in Yo Creek
    The long arms of the law finally caught up with a Guatemalan fugitive wanted by Interpol. Uefrin Aldana Cassasola was found living in Yo Creek Village, Orange Walk when police [...]

    6 Fishermen Remanded for Drugs, Guns & Ammo
    This afternoon, six fishermen accused of being in possession of a firearm, ammunitions and Illegal drugs while on Turneffe Atolls were back in court. On Wednesday, July first, 2015, while [...]

    4 Men Charged for Heroin Get Bail
    Four persons, including a Chinese national, who were busted in possession of over seven kilograms of heroin, were offered bail this evening by Supreme Court judge, Justice Denis Hanomansingh. Chinese [...]

    LICU Speaks on GM’s Administrative Leave
    On Thursday, News Five brought you footage of a protest held in Orange Walk Town involving the La Inmaculada Credit Union. Actually it surrounded the removal of General Manager Yolanda [...]

    GSU Accused of Excessive Force…AGAIN
    Members of the Gang Suppression Unit struck again on Thursday in the Jane Usher Boulevard Area. Around six p.m., officers attached to the GSU stormed the house of Leroy Slusher [...]

    Allegedly Shoot Dog in Front of Children
    Aside from roughing up the elderly man and the minor, the family dog, Prince, was shot twice and killed, allegedly at the hands of the officers. Joyce says that the [...]

    Senators Rumble Over Mayan Communal Rights
    As you heard earlier in the newscast, the situation in Santa Cruz is still very much on centre stage, and so is the issue of the CCJ consent order – [...]

    San Pedro Transfer Station Inaugurated
    The Ministry of Natural Resources and the Belize Waste Management Authority inaugurated the San Pedro Transfer Station. It’s a station that is a part of a solid waste management system [...]

    Lily White Summer Camp Kicks Off in the City
    It’s the summer and that means camps are popping up across the city – camps on sports, education and even the creative arts. Today, however, the Lily White Summer Camp [...]

    Get Your Fibbers Sauce Today!
    For those Belizeans who’ve fallen in love with Fibber’s Fried Chicken on Cemetery Road, there is some good news tonight. The local company which has been serving tasty local chicken [...]

    LOVE FM

    Health project to benefit children in Southern Belize
    Paul Mahung reporting… “The inspection visits to project sites under construction in rural Toledo was done by Toledo District Health Council chairman Alejandro Vernon. Alejandro Vernon – Chairman, TDHC “We embarked on a one day rural health visit to various communities, inspecting some of the projects going on under the Japan grant which was launched […]

    New Belizean sauce hits the market
    There is a new sauce on the shelves. Eliom Ellis and Hortence Young have started the production of their sauce, Fibber’s Sauce. They told us more. Eliom Ellis – Business owner “We have two flavors, the original and the hot and spicy. These are for the pepper lovers these are for the people for your […]

    Lucky winner to pick up five hundred thousand dollar cheque
    And while no one collected the half a million Fantasy Five Jackpot, a lucky woman from Belize City will received a check from Mek Mi Rich for half a million dollars. This is the first time in nine months that someone has won the Mek Mi Rich jackpot. We spoke to Mek Mi Rich General […]

    Fantasy Five jackpot grows after prize remained unclaimed
    The second the clock hit 12 o’clock midday the Fantasy five Ticket that was once valued half a million dollars now valued nothing. In the first draw of 2015, was held on January 3 and back then the jackpot was at five hundred and nine thousand dollars. But no one collected the winnings and after […]

    Couple injured in traffic accident
    Fem Cruz reporting… “30 year old Pedro Tech along with his wife 27 year old Sara Tech both residents of Arizona area are recovering at home after they were knocked down from behind by a motorcycle last night. Love News visited the family in the Arizona area of Tea Kettle village and spoke to Sarah […]

    Special Envoy for Women and Children heads delegation to Taiwan
    Special Envoy for Women and Children, Kim Simplis Barrow will lead a delegation to Taiwan from July 5 to 10. This is at the invitation of the Government of the Republic of China on Taiwan. Mrs. Barrow will be awarded the Fervent Global Love of Lives medal during her visit. According to a release from […]

    Dangriga prepares for bi-election
    On Wednesday, July 8, voters of the Dangriga constituency will be going to the polls to elect a new standard bearer. This is after the seat was left vacant by the resignation of Ivan Ramos. The men looking to fill the vacant post are Anthony Sabal from the People’s United Party, Frank Pawpa Mena of […]

    Maya leaders hold meeting to state their position
    An assembly meeting of Toledo Alcaldes Association was held this morning in Golden Stream Village, Toledo. Paul Mahung reporting… “The Maya leader’s alliance MLA program coordinator Pablo Mis.” Pablo Mis, MLA Program Coordinator “The purpose of the meeting is to update the Alcaldes on the recent incident in Santa Cruz and also the reaction of […]

    Cuban nationals charged for illegal entry
    Six Cuban nationals were caught illegally in Belize this morning. They are three men, 37 year old Duniesky Cupul, Yurixander Escalona, and Gardenia Figueredo. The three females are 37 year old Yusdenia Peña, Andria Peralta, Anisely Reynaldo. Sources to Love News is that police got tipped off that a taxi van was enroute to the […]

    Orange Walk Police nab wanted man
    Yesterday evening police in Orange Walk conducted a raid at a residence in Yo Creek village which led them to the detention of an international fugitive. According to Orange Walk Police, the special branch had been following some leads from Interpol about a certain individual who had turned a resident of Yo Creek village. In […]

    Amandala

    Man remanded for robbery and attempted murder of cop
    A man who first posed as a Good Samaritan by offering assistance to a uniformed police constable, but who at the first available opportunity, allegedly almost bludgeoned the police constable to death before stealing his car, was remanded to prison after he was arraigned on attempted murder, robbery, and other indictable charges this afternoon. An enraged Darren Gillett lunged at Amandala’s court reporter’s camera and had to be restrained by a court police officer who was leading him to the courtroom of Chief Magistrate Ann Marie Smith. Gillett, who was undefended by an attorney, did not have to enter a plea after the Chief Magistrate arraigned him on the charges. The court prosecutor objected to bail for Gillett on the grounds that the virtual complainant, whom he attempted to murder, PC Jason Hall, remains hospitalized in a critical condition. Objection to bail was also made on the strength of the prosecutor’s case against Gillett and also on the basis of the fact that he escaped from police and is therefore considered a flight risk.

    Beef prices expected to increase
    Starting today, Thursday, beef retailers and consumers across the country are expected to experience an increase in the price of that popular commodity. The rise, we understand, has come about due to increasing regional wholesale prices in addition to issues related to supply and demand. In an interview with Amandala yesterday, CEO in the Ministry of Agriculture, Jose Alpuche, explained that since demand is currently exceeding supply on the regional market, Belizean consumers will now have to dig deeper into their pockets when purchasing that type of meat from the processors. He said, “The price of beef has gone up regionally. [Previously], we’ve had a relatively low [wholesale] price here in Belize compared to Guatemala and Mexico, but demand has increased tremendously and it has actively impacted the [retail] price.” Alpuche explained that beef is not a regulated commodity that is subject to price control like some of the other basic commodities; instead it has a market-driven price, which means that when demand is very high and supply is limited, the retail price will go up.

    Donicio “Life” Salazar, in 3rd trial, not guilty of 2004 murder
    A jury of six men and six women deliberated for a record 6 hours and 58 minutes in the Supreme Court of Chief Justice Kenneth Benjamin before returning into the courtroom to announce their unanimous not guilty of murder and not guilty of manslaughter verdict in the trial of Donicio Salazar, 30, accused of the murder of Rodney Richard August. Salazar has been tried twice before for the June 28, 2004 murder of August, a 22- year-old man who was found on the bank of the Macal River in San Ignacio, Cayo District, with a large chop wound to the middle of the back. August died some nine hours later while undergoing treatment at the Western Regional Hospital, in Belmopan. Before he died, however, August named “Life” as the man who had inflicted the massive chop wound to him. August had told three persons that “Life” was the one who had chopped him. He told Desol Neal, a Justice of the Peace; a police corporal, Pedro Ical; and his mother Elizabeth Mejia, to whom he had mentioned that he was going to die.

    Man, 24, accused of raping brother-in-law, 13
    A 13-year-old Silk Grass boy was carnally known (penetrated anally) by his brother-in-law, the common-law husband of his sister, while he (the boy) and his mother were visiting his sister in Silk Grass on Saturday. During that visit to his sister’s home, the boy and his brother-in-law, 24, went to get wood in the bush. The boy told police that while in the bush, the brother-in-law held him down, took off his pants and raped him. After the ordeal, the boy and his brother-in-law returned to his sister’s house, and the boy told his mother what had happened. The boy was taken to a doctor in Dangriga, where the doctor concluded that he had been penetrated and that the injury to him, as a result of the sexual assault, was wounding. The brother-in-law was arrested and police charged him with committing an unnatural crime. He was taken to the Dangriga Magistrate’s Court this afternoon where he appeared before Magistrate Patty Arana, who arraigned him on the charge. He was then remanded to the Belize Central Prison until September 28, when he will be returned to court.

    $70 million more in Petrocaribe spending
    Overspending to the tune of almost $70 million, exclusively from the proceeds of Petrocaribe funds, was hotly debated when the Senate met in Belmopan today, Wednesday, and while the overspending was approved by a 7-5 majority vote supported by ruling United Democratic Party senators and the senator for the churches, the Opposition senators as well as the senators for the private sector and the trade unions registered their firm positions against the spending. As we reported some months ago, when Prime Minister and Minister of Finance Dean Barrow presented his 2015 budget speech – right after the ruling United Democratic Party swept all but one town in the Municipal Elections – Barrow had given notice that he would return at mid-year with a set of supplementary appropriation bills. Barrow said that the proposed 2015-2016 budget, which called for $1.068 billion in spending, “…cannot long survive the tectonic shift caused by last week’s results,” and added that “…the political muscularity of the voters must be matched by the spending muscularity of the Government.” On Friday, June 26, Barrow was back in Parliament with the promised supplementary budgets, but there was no debate on the bills, because the Opposition walked out in protest of a decision by the Speaker, Michael Peyrefitte, to put Senator Patrick Andrews out the House meeting for laughing too loudly while UDP Collet area representative Patrick Faber gave account of spending of Petrocaribe funds for a recent family day. Today, however, the Opposition made a strong showing in the Senate debate.

    The greatest love of all
    Parishioners of the Spring of Living Water Pentecostal Church of God on the outskirts of San Ignacio Town are mourning the loss of fellow church member, Myra Carbajal, 38, of San Ignacio, who died as a consequence of a tragic freak accident that occurred outside their church last night. Police said that at around 8:20 p.m. yesterday, Wednesday, they were called out to the aforementioned church, which is located near Mile 59 on the George Price Highway, where they observed Carbajal pinned under the front portion of a blue pickup which had hit a large metal sliding gate, along with five other persons – including one adult and four children, three of them hers – who were suffering from varying degrees of superficial injuries, at the entrance of the church. Carbajal – who was at the time positioned between the vehicle which had run into the gate and the church building – was extracted from the wreckage with the assistance of police officers and civilians, and rushed to the San Ignacio Town Hospital, where she succumbed to her injuries later that night while undergoing treatment.

    Boxing Federation Sunday Knockouts, June 28 at CET gym
    A couple dozen fans turned out this afternoon at the CET gym to support the Boxing Federation of Belize’s (BFB) ongoing effort to rejuvenate the sport of boxing in Belize. BFB President, Moses Sulph, while expressing appreciation for the volunteering effort of doctor in attendance, Dr. James Williams; referee Roberto Ordonez; and judges Roberto Ordonez, Jr., Elton Anderson, Leshawn Pollard and Francis Henkis; made a call for more corporate and government support to the Federation, which is doing its best with very limited resources. “We need equipment,” said Moses, lamenting the fact that a pair of boxing gloves was recently stolen from the gym. After the singing of the national anthem, the ringside bell was tolled ten times in memory of recently passed veteran Belize City boxer, Henry Gill; and then the action began.

    Stann Creek District Wamule Cup Championship Finale
    This Sunday is the Wamule Cup championship finals at the Ecumenical Football Field. In semifinal action on Sunday, July 28, game 1 saw Umadagu FC with the 2-1 victory over New Site FC. Abraham Chavez (18’) and Earl Cacho (61’) shook the net for Umadagu, while Darnell Swazo (62’) scored for New Site. And in game 2, Hope Creek Pumas dropped Hopkins, 3-1, with a goal apiece from Kieran Fernandez (48’), Joseph Brooks (75’) and Raymond Peters (85’); while the sole tally for Hopkins was by Tony Avila (54’). With the semifinal round completed, we now move into the finals. The third place match will be followed by the final to crown the Wamule Cup 2015-2016 Champion of Champions. Sunday, July 5 2:00 p.m. – (3rd place) Hopkins FC vs New Site FC 4:00 p.m. – (championship) Hope Creek Pumas vs Umadagu FC

    BDBA Firms Basketball update

    Judo Association of Belize holds 1st All Belize Judo Championships
    The Judo Association of Belize (JAB) has brought to Belize the First All Belize Judo Championships, which opened just over a half hour late at 10:35 a.m. due to last minute registrations, but wound up finishing on time at around 2:00 p.m., with Referees and Judges Franz Menzies (President), Leon Guild (General Secretary) and Juan Card (Vice- President) initially officiating, and Event Coordinator Remus Betancourt helping to ensure a smooth tournament. In the intervening 3 ½ hours however, the full house audience was treated to an action packed Judo Championships, starting with the youngest kids who proved to be the bravest at throwing themselves, literally, into action. The outstanding young judoka to emerge victorious from Category 1 of the Kids Division was Christopher Young, who came away with the Gold Medal Award. Shaheed Perez won Silver, and Ronan Solis came up with Bronze. In Category 2 of the Kids Division, Leandro Hegar emerged victorious with Gold, Sebastian Garcia took Silver, and Nishan Martin settled for the Bronze.

    The Maya and Christianity
    Myles incident should have taken place in a Maya village called Santa Cruz. There was a village called Chan Santa Cruz in the southeastern part of Yucatan before the Caste War broke out in 1847. As the Caste War became extended, the Maya rebels made Chan Santa Cruz their retreat and stronghold, whereupon they re-named the village Noh Cah Santa Cruz. There, the Maya held their rebellion together with a kind of religion called “The Talking Cross.” Today, what was once Noh Cah Santa Cruz is a town called Felipe Carrillo Puerto. Thousands and thousands of Belizeans pass through Felipe Carrillo Puerto every Easter on their way to and from the Mexican resort city of Cancun, but, regrettably, there are only a very few Belizeans who know the historical importance of the area and its relevance to Belize. Remember now, when we speak of the Maya of Noh Cah Santa Cruz, we are talking about Yucatec Maya, whereas the Maya of Toledo today are mostly Kek’chi and Mopan Maya. The legendary Jesus Ken, a descendant of the Santa Cruz Maya of the Yucatan, has told this newspaper that the Maya were never a monolithic nation, that there were at least twelve or thirteen different Maya nations. Also, the territory we call Mexico today sustained different Indigenous peoples who were not Maya, such as the Aztecs, the Toltecs, the Olmecs, the Yaqui, and so on. But, the Yucatan itself for centuries after Columbus was a territory unto itself. In fact, you should note that until modern times, it was much easier to travel by sea from the Yucatan to Texas than to travel from the Yucatan to Mexico City, the capital of Mexico. Both the Yucatan and Texas were Spanish possessions, and they both had a history of secessionist tendencies with respect to, first, New Spain, and later, to federal Mexico. Eventually, Texas ended up as a state of the United States in the mid-nineteenth century, around the same time that the Caste War broke out in the Yucatan.

    From the Publisher
    I’ve lived long enough to see the United Democratic Party (UDP) achieve the kind of exalted power which the People’s United Party (PUP) enjoyed in the 1960s and for some of the 1970s. There is a danger to our Belizean democracy which arises from exalted power. That danger involves the fusion of police power with street power, and I will go on to explain what I mean. In the summer of 2003, Ralph Fonseca’s power had grown so immense that he could send underworld elements after me. My wife is not a coward, but she was scared. The civilian citizen in such a desperate situation like mine at that point, turns to the police. But Ralph was in charge of the police. I could not make contact with Carmen Zetina, who was then the Commissioner of Police. The senior police officer I managed to make contact with, treated me in such an offhand manner that I came to a certain conclusion. In early 1978, I had experienced a similar situation with Deputy Premier of Belize, C. L. B. Rogers. The era of Mr. Rogers’ power was the first time Belize saw street power and police power in the hands of the same man. At the point when a specific underworld thug began stepping on me, I was supposedly in alliance with the ruling PUP. When I mentioned the situation to Mr. Rogers, I concluded from his response that the underworld thug perhaps had his blessing.

    The odds against us are greater, says De La Fuente
    After also enduring acts of kidnapping and terrorism at the hands of the Guatemalan military, the Northern Territorial Volunteers stand in full solidarity with the brave men and women of the Belize military, who stood resolute against the Guatemalan military on May 29, 2015. Our military men and women can now attest to the Guatemalan military bullying of Belizeans while our Belizean Government seemingly continues to apologize for their violations. This appeasing action towards Guatemala has placed Belize in a precarious situation. It will now take an intelligent and patriotic leader and a resolute populace to take Belize out of this position of weakness. The odds against us are greater, and more is a stake than during the pre-independence era. Belizeans, wake up and unite in calling out Government to be resolute in its actions against the invaders.

    The “GREAT” effort to curb the influence of gangs on school youth
    The community policing arm of the Belize Police Department today held a graduation ceremony at the Bliss Center for the Performing Arts for another 464 students from Belize City who took part in its ongoing Gang Resistance Educational and Training (GREAT) program. Since its inception in 2011, the focus of the gang and violence prevention program – which is facilitated by some 90 trained police officers – has been to provide meaningful intervention for schoolchildren who might be inclined to juvenile delinquency and/or gang membership not only in Belize City, where gangs are prevalent, but also in different parts of the country, since it also addresses the often difficult family life and other personal issues affecting young persons within the primary and high school system. “It is important that when a student goes through these challenges, there is someone that they can lean on, and that’s our police officers who can assist in helping them to be a better person for tomorrow”, said Officer in Charge of Community Policing at Precinct 2, Eastern Division, Sergeant Brent Hamilton.

    New HIV infections in Belize lowest since 1998
    Information just received from the Ministry of Health indicates that the number of new HIV infections recorded in Belize for 2014, totaling 221, was the lowest since 1998, when 184 new cases were recorded. According to the TB, HIV/AIDS & other STIs 2014 Statistical Report, this represents a decrease of 20% when compared to 2013 data. “This continued trend of decreasing new infections reported as of 2007, in light of continued increasing total number of tests being done, highlights the relative success of the programme in the scaling up of its strategies and efforts,” the report said. Of note is that HIV transmission among homosexual males exceeded transmission among heterosexuals. The data indicate that more than 65% of the new HIV cases were in men who have sex with men (MSM), some of whom also transmitted HIV to their female partners. The second largest affected group are heterosexuals who have casual relations (roughly 22%), and the third largest are heterosexuals in stable relationships (accounting for less than 10%).

    First ever child-friendly Family Court inaugurated in PG
    For the first time, Family Court matters will be dealt with outside Belize City, and to facilitate that process, a first-of-its-kind court with child-friendly features was officially inaugurated today in Punta Gorda Town, Toledo District. The two-storey building includes two child-friendly interview rooms, two one-way mirror rooms, and a play area, and was the product of a joint 3-year project between the United Nations Children’s Fund (UNICEF) and the Supreme Court called “Promoting Children’s Access to Justice” which, we understand, is aimed at establishing a child-friendly justice system in Belize. As part of that project, new policies and procedures have been developed to respect children’s rights and needs as part of an institutional reform of the court system to protect children involved in court cases. The reform is a comprehensive strategy, which encompasses the provision of adequate physical infrastructure, as well as capacity building, and thus included child justice training sessions for Belize’s judges and magistrates. “Today marks the day when the spirit of the Family Court legislation is given new significance… It is intended that this facility will offer the services required to respond to and respect the needs of children”, said Chief Justice Kenneth Benjamin, in concluding his remarks at the opening of the building.

    Cop beaten unconscious by thief, who then stole his car
    Constable Jason Hall, of Precinct 3 Police in Belize City, is presently fighting for his life at the intensive care unit of the Karl Heusner Memorial Hospital (KHMH) due to head injuries he suffered as a result of being beaten in the head with a piece of wood by a thief who had pretended to be a Good Samaritan. Hall is unconscious, and has been listed as being in a critical but stable condition. The incident which led to his injuries occurred at about 8:00 yesterday morning. Police reported that PC Hall, who was in his uniform, was travelling in his car from Orange Walk to work at Precinct 3 at the Queen Street Police Station in Belize City, when on arriving at Rhaburn Ridge Village in the Belize District, his car suffered a blowout. While Hall was changing his wheel, a man came up to assist him. After the wheel had been changed and the policeman was getting into his car, he turned his back on the helper, and the man hit him in the head with a piece of wood, causing the policeman to become unconscious on the roadside. The thief then stole Hall’s car and drove toward Orange Walk Town.

    Breaking Belize NewsPJ

    Maya’s Cool Spot hit by armed robbers
    San Ignacio police are at the scene of an apparent armed robbery of a business in Santa Elena Town, Cayo District. Around 9:30 tonight, two masked men entered Maya’s Cool Spot in Santa Elena the corner of George Price Avenue and the low-lying wooden bridge. They demanded money from owner […]

    National debt approaching $2.3 billion; Venezuela now Belize’s largest bilateral creditor
    The Central Bank of Belize reports that at the end of 2014, Belize’s national external debt was closing in on $2.3 billion, with some $84 million due on the cumulative interest rate of 3.7%. The restructured 2008 “Superbond” now stands at 46.8% of the total external debt, with […]

    IACHR questions arrest of Maya leaders
    The Inter American Commission of Human Rights has written Attorney General and Minister of Foreign Affairs over the arrest of Maya Leaders Alliance spokesperson Cristina Coc and 12 residents of Santa Cruz, Toledo District. In the July 1 letter the IACHR officially asks for information on the whereabouts, […]

    Katy Sealy leads Belize contingent in C.A. Games
    British Belizean athlete Katy Sealy beat competitors from Guatemala and Nicaragua to the gold medal in women’s heptathlon at the Central American Games in Nicaragua. Sealy scored 4,614 to 4,361 for Ruth Merida of Guatemala and 3,599 for Nicaragua’s Maria Briceño. Sealy also holds the new national record for javelin throw […]

    Woman’s stabbed body found in P.G. apartment
    Police in Punta Gorda are investigating an apparent murder, that of labour officer Juana Cardinez. Cardinez’s body was said to have been discovered on Friday morning in an apartment at the corner of Jose Maria Nunez and King Streets, showing apparent stab wounds. Not much is known at this time […]

    Police detain girl and young man in Desmond Usher disappearance/murder
    Hattieville police have closed in on two suspects as they continue to investigate the disappearance and apparent subsequent murder of 23 year old Desmond Usher Myers, also known as “Mumuch.” An underage girl and a 21 year old man are reported to be in police custody at this time. Usher […]

    17 year old goes missing in Ladyville
    The mother of 17 year old Loani Alvarez of Ladyville says she fears for her daughter’s life after she left home last Thursday, June 25. Alvarez’s mother, Marisela Galdamez, says that Loani called her about 10 minutes after she reported her missing at the Ladyville police station, saying that she […]

    Cuban Immigrants intercepted in Orange Walk
    Reports reaching our newsroom are that a group of Cuban immigrants were intercepted on the Orange Walk By-pass by authorities. Information is still sketchy but BMG was informed by a reliable source that the men were traveling in a taxi van with Corozal license plates. This is a developing story […]

    Hon. Castro discontinues lawsuit against Channel 5 and Alvarine Burgess
    Reports reaching our news desk is that Hon. Edmond “Clear the Land” Castro and his attorney Rodwell Williams have decided to discontinue with the case against Channel 5 and Alvarine Burgess on the lawsuit for defamation. While there is no official judgment both Channel 5 and Alvarine Burgess were granted […]

    Punta Gorda Police find dead woman in an apartment
    Reports reaching our newsroom are that police in Punta Gorda found a female body in an apartment. This is a developing story and we will be updating as more information becomes available. This is a developing story and we will be updating it as more information becomes available.

    Guatemalan fugitive apprehended in Orange Walk Town
    Yesterday, authorities in Orange Walk Town apprehended Lefron Aldana, a Guatemalan fugitive who is wanted in his home country for murder. According to reports, Aldana was living in the outskirts of Yo Creek Village and was arrested at his home by Orange Walk Police. This is a developing story and […]

    Blogs

    Mystic River Resort: Something Special Carved Out of the Jungle
    About 8 years ago, a tiny lady bought a large piece of gorgeous jungle on the Macal River and decided to build a resort. She and her new husband Tom (both former residents of Ambergris Caye, Belize – a far cry from the jungle) set out to carve their own world – on over 180 acres. And they did it…absolutely beautifully. Mystic River Resort, just outside the tiny village of Cristo Rey, is set in the broad leaf “jungle” right on the wide Macal River – about a two hour drive directly west from Belize City. Once you hit San Igancio, you turn up hill and into higher elevations…and a totally different landscape. One that can change in just a few feet. It is perfectly situated for all sorts of adventures…from trips to the the Mayan sites like Caracol and Tikal to ATM Cave (which I NEED to tell you about) to one of a kind Polaris trips to water falls and secret caves.

    International Sourcesizz

    Tyler resident runs for 12 hours to send 2 kids on Belize mission trip
    Tyler resident and father of two, Paul Bradshaw, took a message from his associate pastor to heart and ran with it — literally. Bradshaw ran in a 12-hour run at Chapel Hill High School’s track beginning at 8 p.m. Friday, after raising $3,600 — enough money to send two kids to Belize for a missionary trip with Friendly Baptist Church later this month. “Do what you can, where you are, with what you have, for the Glory of God was the message that stuck with me,” Bradshaw said. “I couldn’t go on a missionary trip myself and couldn’t personally fund someone to go, but I have two legs that work, so I challenged my friends to donate money for me to run.” This is Bradshaw’s second year to raise funds for a missionary trip with his church. Last year, enough money was raised to send two kids on the trip — an accomplishment that meant Bradshaw ran a 31-mile trail race in June and then another 100 miles on his own later in the year. Luckily, many of his friends came to the 100-mile run and donated their miles to the cause, too, and all together they ran more than 150 miles that day.

    Videos

  • Great Blue Hole—Coastal Symmetry in Sinkholes, $2.99, 32min. Probe the mystery of the Great Blue Hole, an enormous submerged sinkhole ringed by a coral reef off the coast of Belize. Study the processes that create sinkholes, and the nature of karst topography, which is produced by the erosion of limestone.

  • Land of Belize, 47min.

  • San Ignacio to Georgeville, Belize, June 2015, 14min.

  • BELIZE, 5min.

  • Belize 2015 - Scuba Trip - San Pedro Tackle Box Canyon Nurse Shark Dive, 6.5min. Belize 2015 - San Pedro Tackle Box Canyon - Shark Dive with Jimmy.

  • Belize, 76min.

  • Restore Belize, 10min.

    July 3, 2015

    The news will be a bit brief for the next week or so due to time constraints


    FOR TODAY'S BELIZE WEATHER, CLICK HERE

    Click for our Daily Tropical Weather Report.

    Specials and Events

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


    The San Pedro Sun

    Sly Dog wins the Dia de San Pedro Fishing Rodeo!
    Eight vessels participated in the annual Dia de San Pedro Fishing Rodeo held on Sunday, June 28th. From 6AM, island fishermen were out at sea, casting their lines in hopes of reeling in the big ones. By 4PM, a large crowd of spectators had gathered at the Boca del Rio Park to await the vessels coming in with their day’s catch. Qualifying fish in the tournament were required to be above a certain weight and of the listed species: snapper, jack, barracuda, Spanish mackerel, king fish, wahoo, dorado, tuna and grouper. All fish caught by those on vessel were jointly weighed to get one cumulative weight. The team with the highest weight would take home the grand prize of a Honda Motorcycle. Taking the first place prize of the Honda Storm Motorcycle with license and registration was team ‘Sly Dog’, captained by Robby Guerrero. Captain Guerrero and his crew managed to pull in an outstanding 179.9 pounds of fish. In second place was team ‘Fishing Unlimited’ with 170.75 pound and captained by Hilberto Lara. They walked away with $2,000. ‘Bill Collector’, captained by Alberto Bradley, took the third place prize of $1,000 with a cumulative weight of 164 pounds of fish. Individual cash prizes were also given for the largest tuna, largest snapper, largest dorado, largest barracuda, largest grouper and youngest angler on board a vessel.

    Leovijildo ‘Leoli’ Varela tragically lost at sea
    Tragedy struck Varela’s Cargo Service Limited on Thursday, June 25th, when owner and tug boat captain, 80-year-old Leovijildo ‘Leoli’ Varela was lost at sea and is yet to be found. The incident occurred sometime around 9PM, when the vessel experienced problems while trying to dock at the Port of Belize, In Belize City. Several searches for Varela was conducted, but on Sunday, June 28th, the Belize National Coast Guard (BCG) concluded the search declaring Varela dead. While family members in San Pedro are still in shock, they have accepted the death of their loved one and are now in the process of planning a memorial service. According to initial reports, due to inclement weather conditions, the crew had detached the barge from the tug boat, “San Vicente”, to avoid colliding with the pier. But the heavy rains and rough water conditions caused the tug boat to swerve, crashing into the barge where Varela was on deck. The force of the impact sent him overboard and Varela did not resurface. Crew members claim that they saw blood in the water immediately after the incident, which led to speculation that Varela might have suffered some sort of trauma, which prevented him from resurfacing.

    Costa Maya Festival® Presents: Miss Nicaragua! Grupo Ladron confirmed for 2015 International Costa Maya Festival®
    It is official! The International Costa Maya Festival® will be hosting Grupo Ladron as its international artist on Saturday, August 8th. Be sure to get ready to storm the festival grounds at the Honorable Louis “Cuz” Sylvestre Sporting Arena in San Pedro, Ambergris Caye for a night of romantic ballads. Group Ladron is a Mexican musical “Grupero” romantic group that formed in Nuevo Leon, Monterrey in 1991. It is currently composed of Sergio Villarreal (vocals), Orlando Contreras (drums), Jorge Salas (keyboard) and Raul Zambrano (bass). They became a musical sensation with their international hit song ‘Tú me quieres lastimar’, launched in 1992 by Discos Sabinas. Of course, their music spans the decades (and generations), and will be sure to bring memories for those who attend. Also bringing memories will be our third contestant looking to represent her beautiful country of Nicaragua at the Reina de la Costa Maya® Pageant. Yuliset de Los Angeles Sotelo Laguna is a 22-year-old Business Administrator who stands at 5’5”. The lovely brunette enjoys dancing, listening music, family outings, reading (magazines), modeling, traveling and visiting new places.

    Ambergris Today

    Grupo Ladron to Highlight Costa Maya: Meet Miss Nicaragua
    El Grupo Ladron has been booked by the Costa Maya Festival to highlight International Night and bring their romantic grupero vibes to Saturday night, August 8, 2015. The group fits the line of entertainment provided by the festival highlight and conclude the three-day festival that takes place annually in August. El Grupo Ladron is one the most successful Mexican groups in the romantic grupero musical category. They originated in Monterrey, Mexico and it was the song ‘Tu me Quieres Lastimar’ that launched them to international status and win awards in countries including Chile, Argentina, Paraguay, Guatemala, Mexico, Belize and the United States of America, among others. Grupo Ladron’s music is categorized as Grupero, regional Mexicano, Balada and Cumbia.

    Misc Belizean Sourcesmzz

    4th of July All Day BEACH BASH
    Tomorrow at 11:00am AMBER Beach Bar & Grill in San Pedro, Belize

    San Pedro Junior College Now Accepting Applications for New School Year

    Caracol Demolished
    Joe Awe wrote an article, coinciding with the BAAS, about the 'star wars' between Caracol and Naranjo. Well done. "Throughout the central part of of Central America sat these great cities built by one of the greatest American civilisations. These people dared taming the vindictive tropical forests within which they would create history. In a place such as this one, alliances were key to survival. Not only for the particular destinies of kings but more importantly, for an entire civilisation."

    Western Spirit Dominates 2015 Nationals
    Congratulations, Ron and Liam, for winning the 2015 Nationals. Western Spirit did really well all around. Pictures here, and here, and here. "To all western spirit fans Ron Vasquez and Liam Stewart made us proud yesterday by becoming the elite and master champion of the country! Also Nissan Aranna a new member of the western spirit place 2nd in the elite road race and Tyson Pyne second in the elite time trail!"

    Channel 7

    Arenal Man Viciously Chopped To Death
    The body of 58 year-old laborer Pedro Garcia, a resident of Arenal Village, was found just outside of San Ignacio Town on the Bullet Tree Road. Police observed multiple chop wounds on the face, hands, and neck area. At this time, it appears that he was attacked there and left to die, but at this time, there is no explanation as to why he was viciously chopped. Our news team was in San Ignacio Town today, and Courtney Weatherburne reports: Courtney Weatherburne reporting Only this blotched patch of grass and twigs remains after yesterday's murder 58 year old Pedro Garcia was killed in this empty lot early yesterday morning and his body was left among these bushes now stained with his blood Garcia's body laid there all day, partially shaded by this. It's only until the early afternoon that his body was found. According to a witness, he takes this shortcut to work every day…But yesterday - his daily route led him to this horrific discovery. Voice of Witness "I was coming to work about 2:30pm yesterday evening when walking through here when one person came running frightened saying that he found a dead man. He was trembling. I came and saw the body there chopped up right there."

    A Mother Sacrifices Her Life For Her Children
    Also from Cayo, a mother sacrificed her life for her kids. 38 year-old Myra Carbajal, a resident of Santa Elena had just come out of a meeting at her church last night when a vehicle broke down the iron gate and slammed into her in the church compound. Carbajal was standing by the entrance of the church and the vehicle pinned her against the church. Seeing the vehicle coming towards her she grabbed onto and covered about 5 kids who were near the door. It's a story of both heroism and sorrow, and our news team found out more today. Courtney Weatherburne spoke with the police and her family: Courtney Weatherburne reporting A small altar was placed on the living room table in the Carbajal's Santa Elena house this afternoon. This candle was burning in the memory of accident victim 38 year old Myra Carbajal. Her pictures were placed on either side and the bible was open to the page with her favorite verse. While this altar displays may portray a peaceful scene, but in the background pain and agony overshadows. Elaida Carbajal, Sister "Yesterday I was at home in San Pedro and my cousin called me and she told me that Myra was in an accident. I ask her what had happened and she said that Myra was coming out of the church and a car hot her, but she didn't tell me anything else. Then she called me back and then she said Myra is dead, come quick. I told her that my sister cannot be dead, because I was just there a couple of days ago and I call and then they told me that the doctor said that she was dead already. I feel it a lot. She is my sister. I love her so much. My little niece and nephew also got hurt. We just have to be strong."

    Owen Parham Convicted Of Burglary; Gets More Jail Time
    Santa Elena resident Owen Parham is already spending time in prison for firearms convictions, but today, he got more bad news when he found out that he will get more jail time. That's because he was convicted of burglary today in the San Ignacio Magistrate's Court. The Prosecutor made the case against him that on July 24, 2012, he broke in to the home of Shahira McKoy in Camalote Village. Once inside, he stole $4,436 in cash. It seems a simple enough case to prove, but the law enforcement had a tough time with him as a defendant because he fled Belize before any criminal action could be taken against him. He only faced prosecution after he was deported in 2014.

    Donicio's Third Murder Trial
    Right now, a jury of 12 is deliberating today in the court of the Chief Justice Kenneth Benjamin to see if it can reach a verdict for 30 year old Donicio Salazar, aka "Life', who charged with the murder of Rodney Richard August. The incident occurred between 2:30 and 3 p.m. on June 28, 2004. According to the evidence, August was sitting on the bank of the Macal River in San Ignacio socializing with a female friend, Janelle Longsworth, when his assailant chopped him in his back. August succumbed to his injury shortly after 11 P.m. at Western Regional Hospital. Before he died he told 3 persons that it was "Life" who chopped him. The 3 persons testified. They included his mother, Elizabeth Mejia, Justice of the Peace Desol Neal and Pedro Ical, who was a police corporal at the time. In his defence, Salazar testified that at the time of the incident he was at home recovering from a stab wound he had received about a month before the incident. He called 2 witnesses to support his alibi. They included his mother, Soledad Salazar, and Verona Chacon, a family friend. Both of them said that Salazar was at home at the time of the incident.

    A Gun At Sea
    Tonight, Belize City Police have 6 men in custody, while they are preparing firearms charges for them after they were allegedly caught at sea by the Coast Guard with an unlicensed firearm. 21-year-old Everon Teck, 43-year-old Emilio Camara, 29-year-old Geovanni Murillo, 52-year-old Goldburn Goff, 21-year-old Dion Usher, and 33-year-old Jerome Bowen were on Turneffe Island today when a Coast Guard team decided to search their camp. That led the officers to find a 9 mm pistol, and so, all 6 men were detained and transported to the Coast Guard Base. They were handed over to police who are preparing charges for them them. They will be arraigned at the earliest convenience.

    The Salary Adjustment Causes An Expansion Of The Wage Bill
    Government's wage bill - every year it represents a huge chunk of the national budget and over the past two years it went up by almost one fifth. That's a result of the wage increase given to teachers and public officers in successive years. How much does it all cost? The prime minister and minister of finance gave an overview at Friday's house sitting: Hon. Dean Barrow - Prime Minister "Our teachers and public servants, our police officers and soldiers - all 12,000 of them will benefit from an 8% salary increase and for most, 10.5% salary surge when the annual increments are taken into account. The value of this upward salary adjustment is estimated at an astonishing $43 million dollars for fiscal year 2015/2016. This $43 million is one and half times larger than the size of last year's salary increase and increment. In that fiscal year 2014/2015, teachers and public officer shared a bounty of $29 million dollars more in salaries and increments, representing at that time a 6% salary increase in addition to the 2.5% increment. So then in 2 fiscal years since a partnership was forged between Government and the unions, this UDP administration will deliver a cumulative 19% salary and increment increase for teachers and public officers. The equivalent of $72 million more in the collective pockets of public servants."

    The Sugar Season Soon Close
    Keeping on unfinished House business, the Minister of Agriculture and Natural Resources announced last Friday that the Sugar Season is coming to a close. He declared that even though there is less sugar cane delivered when compared to last year, more sugar was produced. Here's his explanation in the House of Representatives: Hon. Gaspar Vega - Ministry of Natural Resources/Agriculture "Last year we milled 1,152,000 tons of sugarcane and produced a 125 thousand tons of sugar. It is clear that this year the cane farmers and the entire industry is having a huge increase in production of sugar. At the end of the day we won't be able to deliver as much sugarcane than last year but by far reproducing much more sugar. Mr. Speaker, last year in the 2010/2011 crop, we delivered 843,786 metric tons and this year to the 24th of June we have delivered 1 million 63 thousand 148 tons of sugar cane. We have been falling short almost a 100 thousand tons of sugar compared to last year. The crop this year is going to come to a closure 1 day prior to last year's. So we are not going to be able to blame the weather. It's simply because of the lateness on the start of the end of crop."

    Wally Garbutt: Educator, Philosopher, Fisherman... Politician?
    On Tuesday's newscast, we told you about the vacant post created when Melvin Hulse resigned as the Stann Creek West Standard Bearer for the UDP. Delroy Cuthkelvin wants to run in a convention to replace him, but the Prime Minister says that he ought not to. The man who the PM hopes will emerge victorious is career Educator Walter Garbutt. He undoubtedly has the respect of the Prime Minister, and so, that piqued our interest to find out what type of man he is. That opportunity presented itself last night, and we asked him why politics now, while he's in his 60's. He explained it to us: Walter Garbutt - Aspirant, UDP Standard Bearer, Stann Creek West "My profession, my career, my passion: education and fishing and I have had the best of both worlds. I spent 50 years in education and I am 65. I'll be 66 next week Wednesday and I am so proud of my age and I have spent about sixty five and a half years fishing. So, I've been fishing longer than I've been teaching." "It was difficult. Even now sometimes I almost had a nightmare about a night or two ago, because I was getting into politics - "really all that crowd and that noise and I am not accustomed to that, but Stann Creek West calls and if Stann Creek West or Toledo East or that kind of area calls me - Belize call.

    A Garbage Problem In The City's Secondary Market?
    For some time now, we've been receiving low profile grumbling from the fruit and vegetable vendors who set up shop in the open Belize City lot owned by Arun Hotchandani. That's right next to the Michael Finnegan Market, and the complaints have been that there is an unsanitary buildup of garbage. So we went out to see it for ourselves over the last two days. We spoke with a few of the personalities who frequent the area, and they told us what's been causing unsanitary situation where food is being sold: Brian Reneau - Customer "I think the market is in deplorable condition. The vendors pay their money every week and Government have to send help to send the health department in here. You see all the dirt in here and the stench all over the place. This is not humane. I think they should sent some health inspectors to see what is happening in here." Javier Cocom - Customer "The proper authorities they are not doing their job because time and again I go and come from San Pedro. I would pass by to buy some fruits and things, but looking at this whole mess here, it doesn't give me that enticing thing to buy food and vegetables because to me it's not healthy. So I guess that proper authorities should look into it and do something because I have a friend here also. He says that he pays his dues so that the place could look good."

    Loani Is Missing; Mother Frets
    A 17 year old girl is missing. Loani Alvarez left her Ladyville home last week Thursday morning and hasn't returned since. According to her mother - Marisela Galdamez, Loani called her moments after she left home that Thursday to assure her that she was okay. But it was yesterday's phone call that has Galdamez in distress. Galdamez came to our studios this morning to plead for her daughter's safe return home. Marisela Galdamez, Mother of missing girl "Last Thursday, I left home 8:10 am and when I came around 8:20 am she was missing already." Reporter "So, that same morning you came back....?" Marisela Galdamez, Mother of missing girl "The same morning. Yes, I went to the Ladyville Police Station to do the report. Now, she called me 10 minutes after I did the report. She called me and told me that she was waiting for the bus and then she shut down the phone. Then she called station and said she's with a friend but she didn't say where."

    A COMBI-nation Program To Eradicate Vector Borne Diseases
    In recent years the number of new cases of infection from dengue have been low, but the Ministry of Health is trying to eradicate it completely. For that, they need the public's help, and so, they're trying to change the behaviors which causes the perfect breeding grounds for the disease vector, the mosquito. Today, the Central Health Region held a workshop to unveil a new program funded by the European Union. The Health Officials explained more: The program is being rolled out countrywide.

    The Unceasing Petro-Tacos Debate
    Petro patronage… right now, the debate over the misuse of the Petrocaribe money - whether real or perceived - is focused on the Mother's Day Cheer Program… And, Collet Area Rep., Patrick Faber remains the point of the debate - or ridicule - depending on who you're talking to, simply because he decided to host a Mother's Day outing in the Corozal Bay. It came up once again at yesterday's Senate Debate, and here's what the representatives from both sides of the floor had to say about it: SO, that's the new term for it, Petro-tacos, and while she had the opportunity, PUP's Lead Senator took a jab at Godwin Hulse, the Senator in charge of Government Business. She was quite candid in her criticism of his recent positions as a member of the Barrow Administration:

    Channel 5

    58 year old Naturalized Belizean Murdered in San Ignacio
    There has only been one murder in San Ignacio since the start of the year, but the body of a man was found on Wednesday afternoon in the area of [...]

    Mother Killed in Peculiar Accident While Saving Children
    A peculiar accident claimed the life of a mother and left two of her children and two others injured on Wednesday night in Santa Elena, Cayo. It happened at a [...]

    Arrests of Maya Leaders Goes Before the O.A.S. Human Rights Commission
    The arrest on June twenty third, 2015 of Maya Leaders Alliance spokesperson Cristina Coc and twelve other residents of Santa Cruz Village has become an international issue. The Inter-American Commission [...]

    Jury Deliberates in Murder Trial of Dionicio Salazar
    The trial for murder against thirty year old Dionicio Salazar started on June twenty-second before Chief Justice Kenneth Benjamin. And at noon today, a jury of six men and six [...]

    Protest in Orange Walk
    The La Inmaculada Credit Union, headquartered in Orange Walk, is one of the largest in the country. It has assets around fifty million and about twenty-one thousand members, but it [...]

    Nolle Pros – Brian Welch Freed of Attempted Murder Charge
    In the Supreme Court before Justice Troadio Gonzalez, the office of the D.P.P. entered a nolle prosequi in the case against twenty-eight year old Brian Welch of Belize City. He [...]

    Coastguard Detain 6 Men on Turneffe Caye for Unlicensed Firearm
    Six men are in custody tonight in respect of an unlicensed firearm found on Turneffe Caye. The men were detained by the Belize Coast Guard on the caye and handed [...]

    The Testy Back and Forth Between Senators Thimbrel and Shoman
    And inside the Senate on Wednesday, things got testy between Senators Thimbrel and Shoman. The U.D.P. senator said that the “U.D.P. Government” is spending the monies wisely and that the [...]

    Senator Shoman on Petrocaribe Tacos
    And there is no debate of Petrocaribe without the now famous ‘tacos and beer’ trip to Corozal. Well, in the senate, Senator Godwin Hulse justified the use of Petrocaribe funds [...]

    Senator Joy Grant Speaks on Petrocaribe
    And whether it sounded like a debate or not, things were a bit calmer when Senator Joy Grant presented. She served up the usual figures and little political jabs here [...]

    Breaking News – Dionicio Salazar Not Guilty of Murder
    And just before seven o’clock tonight, Dionicio Salazar learnt his fate in his third trial for the murder of Rodney August. As we said earlier in the newscast, a jury [...]

    A Bumper Sugar Crop
    The 2015 sugar cane crop, which started very late in January, will close next week Tuesday, July seventh at six pm. The opening was delayed by hostile negotiations between the [...]

    Vendors Complain About Condition of the Pound Yard Market
    The area comprising the Pound Yard Private Market, the Michael Finnegan Market and the Bus Terminal is busy all the time. That’s the main hub where commuters come and go, [...]

    Primary School Teachers Look for an Alternative to the Rod
    With the removal of physical punishment from primary schools across the country in 2013, there has been a need for administrators and teachers to employ a proactive approach to student [...]

    MOE Says More Teachers to be Trained
    The initiative was designed to offer information, training and support to schools.  It commenced in the 2014/2015 academic year with twelve schools.  The introductory step continues to grow and principals, [...]

    Healthy Living Puts to Rest Concerns about Sleepless Nights
    If you suffer from insomnia you know all too well the devastating effects it can have on your body. There’s a difference though, between, having a rough couple of nights [...]

    CTV3

    Guatemalan Fugitive Captured In Yo Creek Village
    Tonight, one of Guatemala's most wanted fugitives is in police custody. Based on information received, Orange Walk Police apprehended Lefron Aldana of Guatemala who absconded from authorities in that City after allegedly committing a murder. Information is still sketchy at this time but we understand that Aldana was found living in the outskirts of Yo Creek Village. We do not know if he was living alone or for how long he has been living in the village. But what we can tell you is that authorities descended to the village, found the area and with a warrant in hand searched the home. Inside police found Aldana’s Guatemalan passport and he was immediately taken into custody. It is not yet known when exactly Aldana entered the country. We will have more on this story in tomorrow newscast.

    LICU Conducts Press Briefing
    And while we could not get comment from Gomez, we did manage to get a few words out of the chairlady of LICU’s board of directors, Ena Martinez. But on this instance, we were not allowed to ask any questions since she read from a prepared a statement. Here is that clip… “Today a handful of the close friends and families of Mrs. Gomez participated in a small protest across from our offices in Orange Walk Town. We wish to remind our members that we are currently investigating some of the actions and decisions that were taken by Mrs. Gomez at the Institution, currently both the Central Bank of Belize and the Auditors are reviewing the information we have provide to them, once the review is completed by the various departments our Attorneys will advices us accordingly and we understand that this should be completed soon , we do not wish to make any formal statements at this point in time until the review by the Auditors is completed, we believe in full accountability and we will come to our membership as soon as the investigation is completed. The board takes it mandate very seriously and every action taken is always for the best interest of our membership and our staff, we are pleased to inform that we have reviewed our performance from April 1st 2015 to June 30th 2015 and we continue to enjoy our usual impressive growth thanks to the unwavering support and patronage and thousands of our members who have visited our office for this financial quarter.”

    Police Attacker Slapped With Few Charges
    On Monday we told you about an attack suffered by police constable Jason Hall and tonight, he remains at the Karl Heusner Memorial Hospital. The good news is that police have arrested and charged his attacker who was identified yesterday as 28 year old Darren Gillett, a Belize City resident. Yesterday, Gillett appeared before Chief Magistrate Anne Marie and was slapped with a slew of charges including Attempted Murder, Use of Deadly Means of Harm, Dangerous Harm and Robbery. For context, Hall reported to police that the vehicle he was travelling in from Corozal to go to Belize City suffered a blow-out at mile 37 on the Philip Goldson Highway. Reports are that a man, who police believe to be Gillett, assisted Hall in fixing the tire and allegedly shortly after attacked him with a gas tank. Hall’s injuries were classified as severe as he was hit multiple times on the head and face area. Police say Gillett then robbed Hall of his cell phone and $450 dollars and made good his escape in his Mazda vehicle. During the ordeal, there were several persons that witnessed the attack and assisted police in identifying Gillett. A day later, Gillett and the car were located on Pine Street in Orange Walk Town. Family members say they are worried for Hall’s prognosis since he hasn’t been able to eat. Hall has been working at precinct three of the Belize City police department for quite some time now.

    LOVE FM

    Annual football camp underway at MCC Grounds
    Stars Summer Camp is in session again this summer. The camp is a free two week camp and has morning and afternoon sessions. The two week camp looks to teach kids the basics of football, and gives them an enjoyable activity to keep them busy. Stanley Reneau, Coordinator “This summer camp is to teach football […]

    Residents say market area need urgent attention
    The media was called out early this morning to one of the markets near the Belize City bus terminal. Some market customers pointed to the private market situated at the pound yard. Vendors there complained of not only deplorable conditions but also of an unsanitary and unhealthy environment. Some customers voiced their concerns. Customers “I […]

    Man found guilty of burglary sentenced to seven years
    Thirty seven year old Owen Parham is tonight behind bars serving time for reportedly committing a burglary. His case was called up today at the Belmopan Magistrate’s court and in Santa Elena town he was sentenced to seven years imprisonment. We understand that his sentence is to run consecutively as he is already serving for […]

    Two persons charged for drug offences in the Stann Creek District
    Harry Arzu reporting… “During an anti-drug operation that was conducted this morning in Pomona Village in the Stann Creek district, Dangriga police have arrested and charged two persons for drug related offences. Police here say that about 7:30 am they conducted a search at the residence of 50 year old Martha Chaveria a vendor of […]

    Health personnel discuss strategy to fight vector diseases
    Ministry of health personnel engaged at a workshop to look at the COMBI project for Malaria and Dengue. Senior Public Health Inspector, Javier Alpuche said they are looking at preventative measures which includes behavioral changes. Javier Alpuche, Senior Pubic Health Inspector “We are here today working on our COMBI plan for the Belize district, let […]

    Motions debated
    Yesterday, the Senate ratified five motions during its meeting in Belmopan. A resolution was passed authorizing Belize to ratify the Optional Protocol to the Convention against Torture and Other Cruel, Inhumane or Degrading Treatment or Punishment Motion 2015. Through this, Belize is committing that it will effectively address issues concerns the convention and allow, without […]

    Union Senator explains nonsupport of bills
    It was Adelaida’s Guerra first presentation at the Senate Meeting yesterday. Guerra represented the Unions and Civil Society as result of Senator Ray Davis being out of the country. Guerra who is the Vice President of the National Trade Union congress of Belize, voted against the Petro Caribe Amendment Bill and the two general revenue […]

    Church Senator calls for better accountability of public funds
    Yesterday the Senate met in Belmopan to debate several bills including the Petro Caribe Loans Amendment Bill and two general Revenue supplementary appropriation bills. While it was expected that the PUP Senators, the Senator for the Private Sector and Senator representing the Unions and Civil Society would vote against the bills and that the UDP […]

    San Ignacio Police investigate murder
    Police in San Ignacio are investigating the murder of 58-year-old Pedro Garcia nationalized Belizean of Arenal Village in Cayo. His body was discovered yesterday evening at around 3 o’clock in an open lot in the Lynette Perdomo Layout area in the vicinity of the San Ignacio Community Hospital. Deputy Commander of San Ignacio Police, Inspector […]

    BDF soldiers charged with drug offences
    Fem Cruz reporting… “According to police on Wednesday evening July 1 sometime around 5:49 pm, members of the mobile interdiction team were conducting vehicular checkpoints between mile 30 and 31 on the George Price Highway when a blue four door Ford Escort car that was coming from the direction of Belmopan to Belize City suddenly […]

    Breaking Belize NewsPJ

    Jury deliberating the fate of Donicio Salazar
    A jury of 6 men and 6 women is deliberating today in the court of the Chief Justice Kenneth Benjamin to see if it can reach a verdict for 30 year old Donicio Salazar, aka “Life’, charged with the murder of Rodney Richard August. The incident occurred between […]

    Annual regional testing initiative on HIV/AIDS
    Do you know your status? That is, are you positive or negative for HIV, the virus which causes AIDS? About 1% of Belizeans – 4,000 – are confirmed to have the virus but the number may be higher because many do not, in fact, know their status. On Wednesday in Belize City […]

    Body found on Bullet Tree Road is of Guatemalan National
    The dead body that San Ignacio Police discovered yesterday afternoon on Bullet Tree Road is of 58 year old Pedro Garcia, a Guatemalan National from the village of Arenal in the Cayo District. According to police reports, sometime after 3pm on Wednesday, they visited an area known as […]

    Senate meets on finance bills
    Both Supplementary Allocation Bills and the Petrocaribe Loans Act (Amendment) Bill, 2015, were narrowly passed by the upper chamber of the National Assembly, the Senate, which met in Belmopan. Executive of the National Trade Union Congress of Belize (NTUCB), Adelaida Guerra, was appointed a temporary Senator for this session to […]

    Santa Elena woman dies while saving kids in traffic accident
    The community of Santa Elena in the Cayo District is today in shock and sorrow after learning that a devoted mother sacrificed her life to save her children in a traffic accident. According to reports, the family was coming out of a church ceremony last night when an […]

    Buena Vista Water Board Under Investigation
    An investigation in the village of Buena Vista, Cayo continues today after allegations were made that Julio Castillo, the chairman of the water board of the village was stealing public funds. According to reports, suspicious cheques surfaced after the Chairman of the Village Council conducted his own investigation and alleged […]

    Darren Gillett arraigned in court for offenses against constable Jason Hall
    Police constable Jason Hall was traveling from his home in Corozal to work in Belize City when one of his vehicle tires blew out and a man who appeared to be a Good Samaritan stopped to render aid. That man then waited for the opportune time to assault the officer […]

    PM answers PUP questions about Guatemalans being given citizenship
    The meeting of the House of Representatives was interrupted on Friday when the members of the opposition stormed out of the house after an incident which was allegedly staged as a form of protest. Despite that incident, many topics were still touched in the sitting and one of the questions asked by […]

    LICU members hold peaceful demonstration in Orange Walk
    Armed with placards and signs, it was clear that these peaceful demonstrators are fed up with the way the La Inmaculada Credit Union is shutting them out. Members of the Union organized a demonstration to voice their discontentment and dissatisfaction at the way things are being handled […]

    An open letter to Peter Lawrence of Caribbean Villas Hotel
    With last week’s decision by the US Supreme Court to make same-sex marriage the law of the land in the US, it is more urgent than ever that we let the world know that We Are Belize. The US Supreme Court may be known as “supreme” […]

    Blogs

    Recap of June weather in Belize and 3 celebrations
    Slow season is upon us once again although it was not feeling so slow for a while due to my involvement with the Red Cross’ 3 back to back volunteer vacation groups. Which explains my absence of late, for some much needed R&R. Hosting the groups was fun but it wore me out. :) That, and I broke my baby toe opening night of lobster festival and have been in recuperation mode while it heals. Some days I look out over the calm water and flat surf; feel the sun warm on my skin and think “why in the world is this slow season?” Hurricanes and rainy season right?! Well, not so much in the reality of things. People do look at the Caribbean with slight trepidation these months. The thought of rain and wind, fear of hurricane and ruined vacations play in their heads; however the reality of this situation is calm and quiet lends well to unforgettable vacationing. This year for example, the wind averaged about 7 knots (13kph, 8mph), rainfall although at times it seemed torrential, was only 6mm (less than an inch). The average temperature was 29°C (83°F), Which often felt like like 34°C (94°F) due to high humidity.

    20 Belize Fruits and Vegetables from Chaa Creek’s Maya Organic Farm!
    The Lodge at Chaa Creek’s 33 acre Maya Organic Farm in Belize’s Macal River Valley produces fruits, vegetables, herbs, flowers, local dairy and meat products in soils that have an abundance of organic matter and natural nutrients. Traditional Maya farming is used with more advanced systems of irrigated raised beds of composted soil fed with nutrients derived from natures store house.

    International Sourcesizz

    Project Belize: Volunteering as an Employee Development Tool
    Volunteering involves providing your knowledge, skills, and abilities, as well as your time and energy, without establishing an employment relationship and usually without any monetary compensation. Employees who take on volunteer roles are able to build new skills and practice existing skills in a different setting from their day-to-day job. PwC’s Project Belize, an initiative that partners PwC employees with schools in Belize City, is primarily focused on financial literacy and environmental sustainability. Specifically, some 200 PwC volunteers—partners, staff, and interns from across the United States—traveled to Belize City, Belize, in the summer of 2011. The PwC team connected with more than 1,200 students in 10 schools in some of Belize’s poorest areas and focused on hosting a youth financial literacy camp, leading a scholar's mentoring program for current and former Belizean students, providing financial and technology training to teachers.

    Coral reefs and shifting baselines
    Twenty years ago I had an opportunity to join Earth Island Institute to lead an Elder Eco-tour to Turneffe Atoll off the coast of Belize, part of the largest barrier reef in the Western Hemisphere. Together we snorkeled through dense and massive clusters of branching elkhorn and staghorn coral and later we shared ideas on how to protect these important ecosystems. I benefited from a magical conversation with a group of environmentally minded individuals 40 to 50 years my senior who shared their first wondrous experiences with the natural world and how that world has changed over their lifetimes. This month, I made my return trip to Belize to rekindle that earlier magic and revisit an ecosystem that I literally immersed myself in 20 years past. This time I returned as the elder (to some degree) ready to share my earlier experiences with my daughters and friends, and to reignite a sense of awe for the natural world through living and snorkeling on a small island atoll off the coast of Belize. I was welcomed by many of the small friends that had amazed me in my youth. With my first breadth I was welcomed by the parrot fish that now are benefiting from nationwide fishing restrictions. The conch lumbered by in vast numbers within areas protected from fishing. The Nassau grouper welcomed me with large soundless hellos, growing more abundant in areas where fishing bans had been implemented and enforced. But alas, the corals were gone. Not totally — but very much missing. The vast and massive sheets of coral competing for space and light were no longer there to cover the bottom with colors of yellow, orange, brown and green. The massive inter-braiding network of the elkhorn and staghorn corals that I so fondly recalled were practically missing, only a few small recruits within the vast debris of its previous self. The brain corals were present and fairing far better than most.

    Videos

  • Sturgis World Challenge 2015 - Belize, 76min.

  • Johnsons Belize Adventure 2015, 13min. This video is about our trip to Belize (Caves Branch and Hopkins) in 2015.

  • Stranded N Dangriga Belize - Caribbean Movie - HD, 75min. GOASTAFA PRODUCTIONS a multi media film company that produced the Belizean movie STRANDED N DANGRIGA and over 30 concert DVD’s featuring popular Jamaican, Belizean, Trinidadian and other Caribbean artist, around the world.

  • Ghost Hunters International (S3 E10) Sacrificed Mayan Spirits, 68min. San Ignacio, Belize - Cahal Pech.

  • Nikki Parasailing San Pedro Belize, 12min.

    July 2, 2015

    The news will be a bit brief for the next week or so due to time constraints


    FOR TODAY'S BELIZE WEATHER, CLICK HERE

    Click for our Daily Tropical Weather Report.

    Specials and Events

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


    The San Pedro Sun

    FIVE cool summer activities you can’t afford to miss !
    With schools closed for summer break until September, we’ve compiled a list of several activities specifically catering to the island youth! Get involved in the community and check out some FREE activities you can do to make your vacation a memorable one! Become a Volunteer Dog Walker at Saga, Basil Jones Summer Camp, Join Local Sport Tournaments, Become an Optimist Sailor, Camp Starfish.

    Athletes showcase talent at Weekend Triathlon
    Island athletes of all ages once again participated in a triathlon competition organized by the San Pedro Sports Committee (SPSC). Held on Sunday, June 28th, the triathlon coincided with the Dia de San Pedro festivities. Organizing the event was Councilor Hector “Tito” Alamilla and Kent “Bob” Gabourel, and the swim, bike and run challenge was divided into five categories. The first race kicked off shortly after midday. First to race was the youngest of athletes participating in the under 13 category. They were challenged with one lap of each discipline. At the end of the race Tiownie Paguada captured the first place prize and trophy, with Mcleish Lambed taking second place and Alexander Fitzgerald taking third place. The under 15 category followed shortly after. A bit more seasoned, these athletes were definitely in the spirit of competition. Kylin Belisle was the first to finish the race, taking the first place trophy and prize. In a close second was Dixon Paguada, who left Melvin Trujio in third place.

    Dispute between Villagers of Santa Cruz and Rupert Myles grows
    Two weeks after the unlawful arrest of Rupert Myles by villagers of Santa Cruz, Toledo, the dispute continues to build. Myles was detained by village leaders on Saturday, June 20th to evict him from a property they claim he is occupying illegally. The land in question is a parcel sacred within the Uxbenka Maya Site. The villagers claim that they had asked Myles to remove himself from the area, but after he refused to move they took the law into their own hands. The incident has only grown more volatile, as police have arrested and charged the villagers for the crime of “Unlawful Imprisonment”. Myles, who is of Creole descent, had lived in the village since October, 2014 after marrying a woman from the village. The villagers claim that he had destroyed structures in Uxbenka in the process of building his home, and to prevent further damage asked him to leave the area. After Myles refused to relocate, the villagers went to his home where they subdued him with force, handcuffed him, tied a rope around his hands and dragged him out of the area. In the process of the arrest, Myles took out his licensed fire arm in an attempt to calm the mob; but to no avail.

    Victor Nal wins first ever Ceviche Competition
    For the first time ever, Area Representative and Minister of Tourism, Culture and Civil Aviation, Manuel Heredia Jr. hosted a ceviche making completion. Being an island with strong ties to the sea, San Pedro residents consume large amounts of seafood, and one of the best ways to prepare it is in ceviche. As such, on Sunday, June 28th, five residents tested their ceviche making skills and put their best dish up for judging. Each competitor had 30 minutes to prepare their tasty treat. Contestants were judged on taste, skill and presentation. Among the panel of judges was Heredia himself, who is always eager to try a good ceviche. The contestants artfully prepared the ceviche, mostly using shrimp as their protein. However, there could only be one winner, and that title went to Victor Nal. He receive a Mac Laptop and $500 cash. In second place was Christon Hazel who walked away with $1,000 cash, while Angel Cocom took third place and a $500 prize.

    Ambergris Today

    Green Reef Youth Summer Camp Has Space for 100 Campers
    PACT Environmental Support Grant for Summer Youth Camp from July 6 to July 31 – The non-government marine conservation organization Green Reef announced this week that it was awarded a PACT Environmental Support Grant of $9,900Bze to undertake a four-week summer camp at Camp Basil Jones on North Ambergris Caye adjacent to the Bacalar Chico Marine Reserve. The Summer Youth Camps is being spearheaded by Green Reef in collaboration with Oceana, Hol Chan Marine Reserve, Marine Education Research & Rehabilitation Institute (MEER), Tranquility Bay Resort, The San Pedro Sun, the Department of Youth Services and the San Pedro House of Culture (NICH) with financial support from the Protected Areas Conservation Trust (PACT). One hundred campers will have the unique opportunity to participate in this fun-filled adventure and experience the thrill of a lifetime at a week-long summer camp. Campers will pack their bags and head to an idyllic beachside retreat, where they will indulge in over-the-top competitions inspired by classic camp games, learn about Belize’s marine natural resources and create unique art & crafts from sustainable materials.

    Misc Belizean Sourcesmzz

    Ten-day Weather Outlook, July 1 – 10, 2015
    The NHC is expecting no tropical cyclone formation during the next five days. Also, a moist, unstable air-mass with an associated low level jet (LLJ) will favor more outbreaks of showers and thunderstorms around Bze through Friday and during next week. The TRIMM remote sensing data indicate that rainfall across Belize was above normal in June, 2015. A seasonally moist, easterly airflow associated with the leading edge on a persistent, low level jet across the Caribbean is enhancing some brief showers and thunderstorms over northern Central America and Belize. A tropical wave around 85 W this afternoon will reach Belize within the next 24 hours, favoring an increase in convection over most districts later on Thursday and Friday. Expect maximum rainfall rates in some areas in the order on 0.60 of-aninch (15 mm) for Wednesday and early Thursday and near 0.50- 1.00 inch later on Thursday and Friday. A second tropical wave moving into the western Caribbean on Friday will dissipate as it moves closer to Yucatan and Belize. Convection will cease somewhat on Saturday.

    Removal of Persons during a House Meeting
    Standing Order 87 of the House, provides for the Speaker to deal with and removal of strangers from the gallery during a House Meeting and Standing Order 44 provides for the Speaker to remove Members of the House during a House meeting but it does not address how to deal with a Senator who is in the gallery during a House Meeting. It goes without saying that a Senator has to be in the gallery because he has no right to sit in the actual chamber where the 31 members plus the Speaker sit during a House Meeting. Standing Order 91 of the Standing Orders of the House of Representatives of Belize states: “(1) The Speaker shall have power to regulate the conduct of business in all matters not provided for in these Standing Orders. (2) The decision in all cases for which these Standing Orders do not provide, shall lie within the discretion of the Speaker, and shall not be open to challenge. (3) The Speaker shall be responsible for the management and general administration of the chamber.” Based on this Standing Order I have made a rule pertaining to behavior of people in the galleries during the House Meeting. Anybody who has ever listened to and/or been to a House Meeting since I have been the Speaker can recall that I repeat this rule to people in the galleries almost every House Meeting.

    Put out of The Split
    Ok so Mr. Andrew, d cake man just told me a little while ago that he got put out of The Split (Lazy Lizard)!! Well, dats another local being banned. Reason being, he cannot sell anything on d property caz he is slowing down their business! Wat a pile ah crap!! Let's see how many more locals will be added to this growing list of theirs!! What a shame!!

    Channel 7

    Petro Amendment Bill Debate That Should Have Happened
    From since Friday, the news has been dominated by the discussion of the PUP’s decision to walk out of the House meeting. It had been planned for weeks before as the Opposition’s opportunity to challenge the Barrow Administration on the decision to amend the Petrocaribe Loans Act instead of repealing it. Well, at today’s session of the Senate at the House of Representatives, an in-depth discussion took place from both sides of the floor in which all the technical points for and against the amendments were hammered out. Here’s a few excerpts of the points presented: Senator Mark Lizarraga – Business Senator "We’re told that these amendments today will ensure greater transparency in the spending of our petro dollars. But in fact Mr. President, these amendment today do nothing to strengthen our management of public funds. On the contrary what they do is seek to validate and encourage poor budgeting practices. Mr. President tax payers, shouldn't we be concerned when independent reports speak to the failure of this administration to properly manage and account for our monies?" Senator Lisa Shoman – PUP Senator "You would believe Mr. President that by putting in here a section that says and I quote, ”The money borrowed from ACBEL shall be kept in a fund at the central bank of Belize which fund form a part of the consolidated revenue fund and maybe withdrawal time to time as the need arises.

    Senator Ray Absent: Interim Senator Guerra Replaces Him
    But, before the meeting could start, the senators had to welcome an addition of a new peer, Adelaida Guerra. She’s the First Vice President of the National Trade Union Congress of Belize, but in order for her organisation to have a representative present, she had to sworn in as a Senator. Now, the circumstance of that necessity are a bit peculiar. The man who usually serves the labour movement is Ray Davis, who viewers know very well as the Labour Movement’s man in the Legislature for years. Well, it appears that he’s out of the country, and he did not inform the general membership of the NTUCB that he was leaving. President Marvin Mora told us that as soon as he was informed of absence of Senator Davis, he quickly moved to convene a meeting of the representatives of the unions under the umbrella of the NTUCB to find a temporary replacement. Guerra had the most support of those present, and she was chosen as the member of the NTUCB as the person who would speak on behalf of the Unions today. Here’s an excerpt of her speech given as a first-time member of the Legislature:

    Senators Hard-Talk On Over-Expenditure By GOB
    The Newly Sworn in Senator Guerra was speaking on what became a very divisive discussion over 2 Revenue supplementary bills to the budget which was passed today. Our understanding of these money bills are that they are the result of Government expenditure which exceeded the budget, but which they are seeking the approval of the House for. The Opposition seized on the opportunity to accuse the Barrow administration of wasting Petrocaribe money: Senator Mark Lizarraga – Business Senator "We draw attention to the instances of spending done in contradiction of the law Mr. President, which exceeded the legal threshold and timeframe for bringing it to the national assembly. We emphasise that the law is very clear and that it is only under serious circumstances where to do otherwise would seriously injury the public good that the minister of finance is allowed to ensure such additional expenditure without first coming to the national assembly for permission." Senator Anthony Sylvestre – PUP Senator "What this appropriation supplementary bill number 2 has highlighted and it has shown is that this government, rather than working within the framework of our constitution had contemplated. The seem to be overspending and spending and then after the fact, come to the national assembly and seek approval and authorisation. And again the point has to be made that it's not their money, it's the people’s money."

    Police: Darren Gillett Assaulted An Officer
    Last night, we told you about Constable Jason Hall who was heading from his home in Corozal to his work Place in Belize City. He experienced a blowout in Rhaburn Ridge, and was helped by a man who pretended to be a Good Samaritan. As soon as the opportunity presented itself, the man assaulted the Police officer, who was in his uniform, stole his vehicle and fled to Belize City. Well, as we have told you, police caught the man yesterday and retrieved the vehicle. He is Darren Gillett, and tonight he’s at the Belize Central prison. He was arraigned today before Chief Magistrate Ann Marie Smith on the charges of attempted murder, dangerous harm, use of deadly means of harm, and robbery. At today’s proceedings, the prosecutor objected to bail on the grounds that Gillet had escaped from police custody, that Hall is still in a critical condition at the KHMH and that the prosecution has a strong case. Chief Magistrate Smith upheld the objection and she remanded Gillet into custody until August 4.

    Buena Vista Water Board Investigation Now In The Hands of the Ministry
    Last night, we took you to the Cayo Village of Buena Vista where an allegation of theft of public funds emerged this weekend. A number of questionable cheques have surfaced after months of inquiry by the Chairman of the Village Council. He suspected that the Chairman of the Village’s Water Board had pocketed money that the villagers were paying to get access to water. Well, his persistence paid off when the Water Board’s bank released the copies of the cheques, some of which was in the name of the chairman, Julio Castillo. As we’ve shown you, he has declared his innocence explaining that he only cashed cheques in his name to get access to the money to do the work of the Water Board. He and his secretary have shown us written records which they assert should prove their innocence.

    A Sickening Sodomy In The South
    There is a disturbing case of sodomy in the south. Reports are that a 40 year old woman from a southern village went to visit her daughter on Sunday in a nearby southern village and took her 13 year old son with her. The woman’s daughter lives with her common law husband in the village. Now, while at the house, the common law husband took the 13 year old boy to collect wood in the bushes nearby and that’s when he took the little boy’s pants off and sodomised him. The common law husband, a 24 year old, was arrested and charged today for Unnatural Crime. His case has been adjourned until the 22nd of September.

    Sexual Assault In The North
    There is also another sexual assault case against a minor but this time in the north. A 10 year old girl along with her mother reported to police that a man touched the little girl’s privates on several occasions. The girl said that the man touched her 3 weeks ago and again last week Thursday evening in her home around 6:30. Reports are that the mother was taking a shower on that Thursday evening and when she came out she caught the man with his hands on her daughter. It is still not known what is the nature of the relationship between the man and the mother or child – whether he is a family friend or neighbour but both incidents happened at the mother’s home. When we spoke to police, they told us that the case officer knows who this man is and when he is brought in he will be charged with sexual assault.

    Challenge Against NCL Hanging By A Thread
    For the last two days, expert testimony was being recorded by the Supreme Court in the case of the Belize Tourism Industry Association (BTIA) and the Government, on behalf of the Department of the Environment (DOE) and the National Environmental Appraisal Committee (NEAC), and Belize Island Holdings Limited, the owners and managers of the Harvest Caye project on behalf of Norwegian Cruise Lines (NCL) has been particularly dramatic. The BTIA won leave for judicial review last year. The Department had approved the environmental impact assessment (EIA) for the island after receiving NEAC's recommendation, but the BTIA successfully applied to the court on two grounds: that the terms of reference and legal requirements were not met, and that there was not enough opportunity for the public to properly review, be consulted with and comment on the EIA. 7 News was in Independence Village for the fiery public consultation on the project, where about 300 residents - a figure disputed on the witness stand by the Chief Environmental Officer Martin Alegria who says he counted about 500 - got a chance to have their say, but BTIA says there should have been a public hearing.

    Being Energy Efficient In The Home
    Energy stakeholders want to help you save more money on your electrical appliances. Yesterday a meeting was held to launch the Adaptation of Labeling and Standards for Energy – Efficient Equipment initiative. This is part of a broader project called Energy for Sustainable Development in Caribbean Buildings. From the technical aspect, the main focus is to regulate the energy use and increase energy performance in the electrical appliances and in turn this will improve the quality, prolong the life span of the appliance and even reduce cost of maintenance. Yesterday, we spoke with Energy Specialists at the George Price Center in Belmopan and they told us how this initiative will work. A Standards and labelling report will be drafted and sent to the Ministry of Energy and Science. The coordinators will be meeting with other stakeholders including the Chamber of Commerce, importers, retailers and customs officers throughout this week. Another meeting focusing on the same topics will be held today at the ITVET in Belize City.

    The Coalition's Booklets; Fighting Off-Shore Oil Drilling
    The Belize Coalition to Save our Natural Heritage was formed by a group of conservationists who want to bring public pressure on the Government Administrations to enact legal policies against offshore oil drilling, especially in protected areas. They’ve been working on innovative ways to get the public informed and involved. The organization launched 2 new media with an interesting form of distribution, and on Monday, its president, Tanya Williams, explained it to us: Tanya Williams - President, The Belize Coalition to Save our Natural Heritage "Actually launching two things. One, preprinted postcard and the second one is an activity booklet. The preprinted postcards are being targeted towards tourists. And so we have gotten involved with people within the tourism industry or partners within the tourism industry like the BTA. And the booklet are going to be at restaurants, we're talking about local children. We want when children to that particular restaurants with their parents or family - they look at the booklet and read and colour, etc.

    Regional HIV Testing Day
    Today is Regional HIV Testing Day and testing booths were set up behind the Scotia Bank to commemorate this day. Now, there are a number of commercials and a series of awareness campaigns geared towards educating the public on HIV. But is it working? Is the message being effectively communicated? According to the National Aids Commission, it is. Today the Communications and Program Officer, Arthur Usher discussed the progress so far and other approaches used to encourage people – especially men - to get tested. Arthur Usher "This is a major part of what helps people to understand the importance. We do multiple variation of out reaches, it's ongoing throughout the year. Big events like this are usually for us is twice a year which is June and world aids day. The organisation like BFLA and PASMO and ministry of health and all these organisations - they're consistently educating people and consistently out reaching. So it's throughout the year and the impact has been felt. What we are doing is called bring a man campaign. The person who bring the most men gets a gift at the end of the day. And for the first 25 men this morning got a official regional testing day mug. So again that's something to kind of change the mentality and work with people to get prizes. We also have 2 social medial competitions that we're doing. We have a selfie competition and 30 to 60 second video competition. And you can just take a selfie with a little caption and upload it to our facebook. You could win up to 500 dollars for first price and 250 for second prize."

    Ministry of Health Hilux Crashed
    In most cases when we report on vehicles assigned to the Ministry of Health - it’s because it was stolen. But tonight’s report is about a crashed health vehicle. On Saturday afternoon, the driver for the Corozal Community Hospital, 33 year old Aaron Babb was driving the health vehicle around 12 midday when he slammed into a cement post on a street in the Finca Solana area in Corozal. Apparently, his foot got stuck between the gas and accelerator pedal. That's when the vehicle speed off and rammed into the post. Babb received abrasions to his forehead and complained of pain on his chest. As for the Toyota Hilux pick-up it received damages to its bonnet, bumper, it has a broken grill, broken headlights ( on both sides), the radiator is damaged, both side fenders are dented and the windshield is shattered. According to the information Officer at the Ministry of Health, Babb was on official business heading back to the hospital when the accident happened. The truck has been sent to a mechanic to assess the cost of damages. The Ministry is treating this incident as a case of human error and so, no sanctions will be brought or sent to Babb.

    A Donation of Musical Instruments From The Taiwanese Embassy
    In a hand-over ceremony on Monday, a consignment of marching band instruments, valued at over $50,000, was presented by His Excellency Mr. Benjamin Ho, Ambassador of Taiwan to the Governor- General, Sir Colville Young. It was as a contribution to his Music in the Schools Program. The ceremony took place at the Belize House in the City of Belmopan. Sir Colville thanked Ambassador Ho for his generous gift to the young people of Belize and explained that most of the instruments would be given to St. Andrews Primary School in San Ignacio and the Anglican Cathedral College in Belize City.

    The Mexican Marimba Quartet
    Keeping it on music, a Mexican Marimba Quartet is in Belize. It’s called the Mario Nandayapa Quartet. But they are more than just a band – their family, literally – the band consists of mother –who is the manager, the father who is the director and the kids who play along as well. The director – Mario Nandayapa is a 4th generation Marimba player and he told us today how this type of music is deeply rooted in the family tradition. If you want to experience this deep familial and cultural connection, you can - tonight at 7 at the Institute of Mexico. Mario Nandayapa has performed in over 13 countries and has recorded over 30 albums.

    Summer Camping In Lake I
    Football, basketball, sun and fun: sounds like summer right? Well, today one of those summer camps began today in the Lake Independence area. Over 100 kids are enrolled in this camp and it caters to kids from ages 6 to 16. Today we spoke to two of the kids and they told us how this summer camp will keep them out of trouble. Hon. Mark King - Area Representative, Lake Independence "We are filling the constituents with sports this summer. We have several sporting programmes that we are going to be holding. However right here on this field we have 100 kids. These kids will be learning today life skills training in the morning - they'll be given a snack at lunch break. And then in the afternoon we have them having a competition, whereby we have jerseys and everything for them - prizes and everything. It is all about life skills training, discipline, having the children do something for the summer and this area has been crying for this. We've been able to give them a few programmes but this year we have been able to convince the government, the prime minister, the ministries and so forth and everybody is collaborating to see these kids have a wonderful summer.

    Channel 5

    Senators Rumble over Supplemental Appropriations
    On Friday, the House meeting was abbreviated when the Opposition walked out of the House in protest, so the first actual debate on Petrocaribe occurred today in the Senate. The [...]

    Church Senator Votes YES to Appropriation
    Opposition Leader in the Senate Lisa Shoman asked for a division in votes for the approval of the supplementary appropriations for 2014/2015. That led to the bill being passed with [...]

    Debate on Petrocaribe Loan Amendment Bill Opens
    The debate on the amended Petrocaribe Bill started after two this afternoon. Right off the top it was classified by Senator Lisa Shoman as nothing more than a pig wearing [...]

    House Speaker Explains Ejection of P.U.P. Senator
    Senator Patrick Andrews was removed from the House at the instructions of the Speaker, Michael Peyrefitte during last Friday’s House meeting. That measure prompted the opposition representatives to walk out [...]

    MIT Seizes AK-47 and Ammo
    Police have made a huge bust of an arsenal that includes a high powered weapon as well as a hundred and six live rounds of ammunition and have arrested two [...]

    Harvest Caye EIA Questioned in Supreme Court
    Thursday, July second, makes exactly one year since Supreme Court Justice Courtney Abel granted leave for judicial review to the Belize Tourism Industry Association (B.T.I.A.). The B.T.I.A. is challenging the [...]

    Harvest Caye Attorney Pushes to Strike Out Case
    While the association anticipates a positive outcome, the fact that the case is still proceeding seems to baffle Senior Counsel Eamon Courtenay. We also spoke with him at the end [...]

    Man Who Brutally Beat Cop is Charged
    The man responsible for the brutal attack against a police officer on Monday is tonight behind bars after he was charged and arraigned for the attempted murder of Police Constable [...]

    Policeman Still Hospitalized
    The officer was in his uniform when he was physically attacked and robbed of his vehicle. Hall has been working at precinct three of the Belize City police department for [...]

    Patnett Acquitted in Supreme Court
    Today, Shelda Patnett was formally acquitted of the charge of Manslaughter by Negligence by a nine member jury who was instructed by Judge Troadio Gonzalez to return a not guilty [...]

    Guatemalan National Freed on Ammunition Charge
    Tonight, Guatemalan national, Mauricio Perez who has been on remand at the Belize Central Prison serving a six month prison term for an immigration offense for being illegal in Belize, has [...]

    Chamber Speaks on PM’s Public Putdown
    Still on Petrocaribe…It is well known that there’s been bad blood between Prime Minister Barrow and the Belize Chamber of Commerce and Industry. The latest fall out was last Friday.  [...]

    President ‘Tux’ Vasquez Says Chamber Still Awaits a Response
    The Chamber has called for transparency, accountability, adherence to the rule of law, and good governance and says that while these may be trivial in political calculations, they are important [...]

    National AIDS Commission Hosts Regional Testing Initiative
    More than one percent of the population is living with HIV/AIDS and that number could very well be higher. The fear of discrimination and confidentiality remain one of the biggest [...]

    Mexican Marimba Quartet Showcased
    Right now at the Mexican Institute, ‘Mario Nandayapa,’ a world famous Mexican Quartet is set to kick off a free show. The family quartet plays Mexican and international selections on [...]

    LOVE FM

    Rotarians take to the stage for a good cause
    The Rotary Club of Belize will be putting off its latest stage production beginning on Thursday night at the Bliss Center for the Performing Arts. Rotarian Sandra McKay shared what the audience can expect. Sandra McKay, Rotarian “The play is called God’s way and it’s written by Dalia Harris from Jamaica. It’s a story about […]

    House speaker said he was within his right to evict Senator from House of Representatives meeting
    Speaker of the House, Michael Peyrifitte issued a release today explaining his removal of Senator Patrick Andrews from the National Assembly building last Friday. The release says while standing Order 87 of the House, provides for the Speaker to deal with the removal of strangers from the gallery during a House Meeting and Standing Order […]

    Archaeology and Anthropology Symposium underway in San Ignacio
    The thirteenth Belize Archaeology and Anthropology Symposium began on Tuesday in San Ignacio. Rolando Cocom from the Institute of Social and Cultural Research spoke of this year’s symposium. Rolando Cocom, ISCR “The symposium this year is also done once more in conjunction with the Institute for Cultural and Social Research branch of NICH along with […]

    Ministry of Energy, Science and Technology and Public utilities launches new initiative
    Fem Cruz reporting… “The Ministry of Energy Science and Technology along with the PUC with support from the global environment facility in association with the Caribbean Community Climate Change launched a new project called the adaptation of labeling and standards for energy efficient equipment. Ambrose Tillet, Energy Director spoke to Love News about this new […]

    Two men charged for prohibited firearm and ammunition
    Angelica Cruz reporting…. “On Monday evening, June 29, sometime around 5:55, based on intelligence received, the mobile interdiction team intercepted a green BBOC bus between mile 31 and 32 on the George Price Highway which was travelling from the direction of Belmopan en route to Belize City. A search was conducted on two Hispanic male […]

    Man charged for attempted murder of police officer
    Darren Gillett, a labourer, was charged with attempted murder and three other offences when he appeared today before the Chief Magistrate, Anne Marie Smith. The other offences included dangerous harm, use of deadly means of harm and robbery. According to the allegation, on June 29 at Rhaburn Ridge, Gillett beat police officer Jason Hall with […]

    Senators dissect General Revenue Supplementary Appropriation Bill Number 2
    The Senators also had a chance to share their view on the General Revenue Supplementary Appropriation Number 2 Bill 2015. Senator representing the Business Sector, Mark Lizarraga went on the point out that the Government has been overspending the people’s money and he was backed up by the PUP senators.

    Senators debate Petro Caribe Loans Amendment Bill
    Vice President of the National Trade Union Congress of Belize, Adelieda Guerra, was sworn in this morning as the temporary Senator for the unions. This came after Senator Ray Davis left the country without notifying the NTUCB of his departure. We have been reliably informed that the NTUCB had called an emergency meeting in order […]

    Breaking Belize NewsPJ

    Chamber of Commerce: we want serious dialogue on economy
    Prime Minister Dean Barrow has dismissed the Belize Chamber of Commerce and Industry concerning dialogue over the Petrocaribe program which the Chamber has strongly opposed in its current format. They wrote the PM on May 14, 2015, asking for respectful and serious dialogue, but speaking after the House meeting, the PM said he had not […]

    BTIA challenges Harvest Caye project in court
    One year ago this week, the Belize Tourism Industry Association (BTIA) won leave for judicial review of the decisions of the Department of the Environment (DOE) and the National Environmental Appraisal Committee (NEAC) to, respectively, approve the environmental impact assessment for the project on Harvest Caye in contravention of the terms of reference and legal […]

    Speaker: I had right to remove Andrews
    Speaker of the House of Representatives says that while there is no specific standing order or legislative provision concerning what took place in the House last Friday morning, he properly exercised his discretion to remove Senator Patrick Andrews through police from the gallery, after the Senator had interrupted […]

    Police find dead body on Bullet Tree Road
    Reports reaching our newsroom are that a body of a male person has been discovered on Bullet Tree road near the San Ignacio Community Hospital. It is alleged that the victim has multiple stab wounds. We are also told that a contingent of officers are combing the area looking for […]

    Atlantic Bank Albert Street Branch to host annual back to school fair
    The annual Atlantic Bank back to school fair is an opportunity for the public to take advantage on lowered interest rates for school loans and deals on school supplies. This year, participating businesses include; Mikado, Sigertronics, Uniform Shop, A&R, Grace Kennedy Ltd., and VIP Wireless among many others. This year’s […]

    Belmopan Police make huge firearm and ammunition bust
    Two men are today in Belmopan police custody pending charges for possession of a prohibited firearm. According to police report, a little before 6pm they intercepted a green passenger bus en route to Belize City between miles 31 and 32 on the George Price Highway where a search was conducted. […]

    Police have no answers on teens’ killing
    Two teenage boys were shot in the head last week in Belize City for no apparent reason. Over the weekend, 15 year old Tyrique Thompson and 16 year old Ruben Leslie succumbed to their injuries. During a police press briefing on Tuesday morning Supt. Hilberto Romero, O.C., CIB, Belize City […]

    BTIA begins lawsuit over Harvest Caye
    One year ago this week the Belize Tourism Industry Association (BTIA) won leave for judicial review of the decisions of the Department of the Environment (DOE) and the National Environmental Appraisal Committee (NEAC) to, respectively, approve the environmental impact assessment for the project on Harvest Caye in contravention of the […]

    Cuba’s victory against Aids transmission
    It was announced yesterday, June 30th, that Cuba has made history by becoming the first country to end HIV and Syphilis transmission from mother to child. This announcement has been labelled as one of the greatest public health achievements possible and an important step towards an Aids-free generation by the […]

    First child friendly Family Court in Punta Gorda
    Tuesday, June 30th, marked the opening of the first ever child friendly Family Court in Punta Gorda Town, Toledo district. The symbolic cutting of the ribbon was done by Honorable Chief Justice of Belize, Kenneth Benjamin and Ivan Yerovi of UNICEF. This new building is the first of its kind […]

    International Sourcesizz

    Eight prime locations for a destination wedding on a budget
    The proposal may have come as a surprise, but what shouldn't at this point is just how much that resulting wedding is going to cost you. Because whether you've said "I do" once before, stood at the altar as a member of a wedding party or simply attended a destination wedding, you know just how pricey they can be. But this doesn't mean you have to quash your dreams of getting married overlooking the ocean or on a hillside retreat. Oyster.com did some research and found eight romantic locales where you can have a beautiful destination wedding on a budget. Belize offers visitors more diversity than your run-of-the-mill beach destination, and flight prices are about the same as those you'd find to popular wedding locales such as Mexico. Not only does Belize boast beautiful sandy beaches, but it's also home to lush rainforests, Mayan ruins and the second-largest barrier reef in the world. And once you're there, it's easy enough to save some green -- and go green, for that matter. Belize has very few expensive mega-resorts and instead is dotted by eco-lodges and inns where room and board can be found cheap -- if you're willing to give up some "luxuries" such as air-conditioning and Wi-Fi. Another perk? With lobster being a local specialty, it comes much cheaper here than stateside, so you can impress wedding guests with a lobster dinner for a lot less.

    Fisher lady of Punta Gorda, recognized as CRFM Fisher of the Year
    Since she was 7 years old, Anna Ramirez, now 63, has been fishing with her family off the coast of Belize’s southernmost district – Toledo, but her gender has not stopped her from working just as hard as the men do while at sea. Her most challenging moments have involved braving the rough seas, even under the threat of hurricanes, to ensure they make it to shore safely. “It’s not easy. You have to be brave and willing to take chances – big chances too!” she said. “The same way a man could fish, you can. The same way they drive an engine, you could do it too. The same way they could throw a net, you could throw a net!” Anna says. “It’s the way they raised me,” she later explained. Mrs. Ramirez has 3 brothers and 7 sisters, and like her brothers—Carlos, Daniel, Eugenio—she took up fishing for a living. She is the daughter of Francisco Castellanos and Petrona Flores, who once lived on several islands off the coast of southern Belize, including Punta Ycacos, Punta Negra and Wilson Caye.

    Caribbean Tourism Stakeholders Hope To Rise With Tide of Cuban Tourism
    The heightened interest in travel to Cuba among U.S. citizens following the Obama administration’s recent moves to restore diplomatic relations with the country has not gone unnoticed by Caribbean tourism stakeholders. On the contrary, some eye the specter of competition with Cuba for U.S. travelers as not only likely, but also as an opportunity to win greater support for the entire Caribbean region. That group includes the Caribbean Hotel and Tourism Association (CHTA), which last week submitted a position paper to the U.S. International Trade Commission calling for the creation of a Caribbean Basin Tourism Initiative (CBTI) to “contemplate policy and technical support to the region.”

    Caribbean Prosecutors Join Forces To Clamp Down On Corruption And Money Laundering
    Chief prosecutors from Commonwealth countries in the Caribbean region have gathered for the first time to discuss recurrent issues that interfere with the prosecution of corruption and money laundering and the recovery of the proceeds of these crimes. Organised by the Commonwealth Secretariat in collaboration with the Caribbean Financial Action Task Force (CFATF), the three-day regional forum takes place in St Lucia from 30 June to 2 July 2015. Directors of public prosecutions and heads of prosecutions of anti-corruption agencies from the Caribbean will have the opportunity to exchange ideas and explore best practice options in their respective jurisdictions. The forum will review strategies to prevent executive interference in the prosecution of corruption-related crimes. Practitioners will consider the interface between corruption and money laundering and the understanding that money laundering could be prosecuted with or without a predicate offence disclosed.

    Cuba-Caribbean business forum in Santiago de Cuba
    Representatives of 10 Caribbean countries will meet in eastern Santiago de Cuba city July 16 and 17 for the Cuba-Caribbean Business Forum. The forum will be attended by ministers of Belize, Dominican Republic, Haiti, Saint Lucia, the Bahamas, Antigua and Barbuda, and the presidents of the chambers of commerce of Grenada and the Bahamas. Trinidad Tobago, Barbados and the Caribbean Communities will have their delegates at the meeting along with directives from the Cuban Foreign Trade and Investment Ministry, the Chamber of Commerce and other institutions, according to the event´s organizing committee. The forum will include presentations of business and trade opportunities in the region by Caribbean Export promotion organization and about business opportunities in Santiago de Cuba.

    Videos

  • San Pedro, Belize May 2015, 4min. Visiting San Pedro. Snorkeling at Shark Ray Alley and playing some ball.

  • YMCA and The Belize Red Cross concluded traing for women of Trial Village, OW, 4min.

  • BSI/ASR CANE CROP REVIEW WEEK 22, 3.5min.

  • Remember Mr Ramon Cervantes after one year of his death, 3.5min.

  • BTV PROMO VIDEO, 1min.

  • Military Jungle Warfare Training - US Marines In Belize, 5min. Military members from multiple nations participate in Jungle Warfare Training during Tradewinds 2015 at Guacamallo Bridge, Belize, June 20, 2015. Tradewinds 2015 is a combined, joined U.S. Southern Command-Sponsored Exercise and an opportunity for the participating partner nations to come together to enhance regional security

  • Belize Mission 2015 at Barton Creek with ROW Kids, 7min. LCC team on mission with ROW Kids to San Ignacio Belize. Sunday was our first day which was spent team building through an amazing adventure at Barton's Creek in the mountains of Cayo district.

    July 1, 2015

    The news will be a bit brief for the next week or so due to time constraints


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    Click for our Daily Tropical Weather Report.

    Specials and Events

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


    The San Pedro Sun

    Another year honoring the Patron Saint of Fishermen: San Pedro
    Over the past weekend, islanders ended the celebration of Patron Saint Peter in grand fashion, with both religious and festive activities. From special mass services at the San Pedro Roman Catholic Church to a karaoke competition and lots of live entertainment in between; activities were plentiful. Due to inclement weather condition, some of the previously scheduled events had to be canceled, but, nevertheless there was still lots of family fun. Among the activities canceled was the first ever Junior Karaoke Competition scheduled for Friday, June 26th to kick off the Dia de San Pedro weekend. Instead, celebrations officially opened on Saturday, June 27th at the Honorable Louis Sylvester Sporting Arena. Speaking at the opening ceremonies was Mayor Daniel Guerrero and Area Representative Honorable Manuel Heredia Jr. Both emphasized the importance of keeping culture and tradition alive, especially that of celebrating St. Peter (San Pedro). St. Peter is the patron saint of all fishermen and the island is still strongly rooted in the fishing industry.

    Tres Cocos residents express concern over garbage dumping
    Residents of Northern Ambergris Caye have grown very concerned over illegal dumping of garbage on vacant lots and beaches. They are claiming that the dumping is taking place near populated areas. The neighborhood affected the most is Tres Cocos and north of the Boca del Rio Bridge. Complaints also included an increase in the rodent populations, which has prompted an infestation around the area. Although the issue has been addressed with the culprits, they refuse to comply, forcing those concerned to reach out to the media and the Town Council. Residents are especially frustrated as they have taken the initiative to hold monthly clean ups in an effort to keep the neighborhood clean. According to Deputy Mayor, Gary Greif, they are aware of the problem, but have yet to inspect the area. Greif also indicated that the SPTC is currently addressing similar issues south of the bridge, but plan to deal with the North Ambergris Caye problem as soon as possible. With the increase in illegal garbage dumping, even the Department of Environment (DOE) has issued a press release. The release noted that most of the illegal dumpsites reported to date consist of waste from households, including organics, plastics, glass, and paper. According to section 31 (2) and 3 of the Pollutions Regulations, the disposal of solid or liquid waste on any land is prohibited without the written permission of the Department. It stipulates that any person who contravenes any of the provisions of this Regulation shall be guilty of an offence and liable to a penalty of not more than five thousand dollars.

    Mexican Navy Vessel experiences ‘Soft Grounding’ by Blackadore Caye
    Another navy vessel has ran aground in Belize’s waters. The incident occurred on Friday, June 26th south of Blackadore Caye. Reports were that a 55 feet Mexican navy vessel, a Polaris-Interceptor, experienced a ‘soft grounding’ (a type grounding that does not lead to adverse effects on the ship) on the mud flats and shoals just south of Blackadore Caye sometime in the early hours of the morning. Belize Coast Guard personnel were quickly deployed to the area and had the boat removed by 4:30PM of that same day. In a press release, the Belize Ministry of Foreign Affairs indicated that the Mexican vessel was within Belizean waters legally, as they had requested special permission from the Government of Belize to transit from a base in the Chetumal Bay, Quintana Roo, Mexico and their southernmost outpost in Xcalak, Mexico. Navy vessels customarily take this route on a scheduled routine basis, but on this transit the vessel experience navigational errors, which resulted in the grounding. After receiving a report of the incident, Coast Guard personnel stationed at the Ambergris Caye southeastern Forward Operating Base responded at around 8AM. The Mexican Navy cooperated with Coast Guard to remove the vessel as quickly and effectively as possible. The Belize Port Authority, the Department of the Environment, and the Fisheries Department then coordinated an assessment on the impact of the grounding to the surrounding environment. Initial assessments reveals that no major damages was made to the sensitive ecosystem in the area.

    Ambergris Today

    Island Mourns Loss of Local Barge Operator Lost at Sea
    Hope, prayers, support of the community and the memory of a beautiful life is what keeps the Varela family together this week after the tragic disappearance of 80-year-old Leovijildo ‘Leoli’ Varela last week Thursday, June 25, 2015. This week the search for his body lost at sea has been suspended and the Varela family mourns and plans to celebrate/commemorate his life in a special mass this coming weekend. Both search efforts by the Belize National Coast Guard and that of the family for Mr. Varela’s body concluded by Sunday, June 28, after all means available were exhausted in hopes of finding him alive. Today, Mr. Varela is presumed dead after an accident on his barge service caused him to get lost at sea. Leovijildo Varela was the owner of Varela's Cargo Services Ltd. a barge company that provided service between San Pedro, Ambergris Caye and Belize City. He was on-board his tug boat on Thursday, June 25, traveling with cargo late at night from San Pedro to the Belize Port with his crew. The weather conditions that evening were less than favourable with high winds, choppy seas and heavy rains and while the tugboat was pulling the barge into the Port a strong squall diverted the boat’s course into the Port.

    Fun Island Activities to Celebrate Dia de San Pedro
    Dance, cultural and entertainment were crammed into Saturday, June 27 due to the postponement of Friday’s program due to rain. The fair grounds teemed with activity as island residents enjoyed the celebrations. The Alborada celebrations were held at Friendship Park that included the cultural aspects and entertainment by mariachi singers and folkloric dance presentations. Sunday was highlighted with a big beach party held at the Boca del Rio Park where the first ever Ceviche Cooking Competition that was sponsored by Hon. Manuel Heredia Jr. (Minister of Tourism, Culture and Civil Aviation), Jennie Staines and Elvi’s Kitchen. Five cooks displayed their skills in preparing the island’s favorite appetizer – the delicious ceviche.

    Misc Belizean Sourcesmzz

    First Friday of July Trash Pick Up, San Pedro
    Join us at the Paradise Theatre (just north of the bridge) for our monthly two hour roadside and beach clean up! Locals, expats and tourists are all invited to help out! Please be there by 9:00 am :-)

    July 4th Celebration
    Bamboo Bar, Bambu Tee, and Mazda Auto Select are having a July 4th celebration, with fireworks and all, at the Cayo Welcome Center this Saturday, July 4th. Have some food, drinks, music, and a great time. The festivities start at 2:00pm.

    CARICOM Marathon
    The CARICOM Marathon in Belmopan went well, and the proceeds raised went to BAY. Happy CARICOM Week! "We'd like to say a big thank you to everyone who supported the CARICOM Week Marathon on Sunday, June 28th to kick off the week of festivities. The proceeds from the event were donated to the Belmopan Active Youths. Thank you to the Directorate of Foreign Trade for their kind consideration and donation to our organization. Let's continue to promote 'Endless Opportunities for Belize!' and of course, for our youths."

    Xunantunich Upgrade
    Xunantunich is going to get an 'upgrade' over the next 4 years. The announcement, which coincides perfectly with this year's BAAS, happening now at the SIRH, makes it seem like the site will be expanded to include more of the plazas, and possibly a new one. Everyone loves Xunantunich! "It's confirmed by Doc Awe that the site core of Xunantunich will completely changed in the next 4 four years. YES! In the next four years work will be done on structures A7, A8, A17, A9, B group, the sunken plaza behind El Castillo, also in C group and D group not even on this map. He also does not expect 13 tombs to be found in A3 building Xunantunich site core that is currently being excavated... Says people of Xunantunich we're not as wealthy as those of Cahal Pech where 13 tombs have been found over the years on B1 building."

    Channel 7

    Public Funds Theft At The Water Board In Buena Vista?
    Since the weekend, there has been a developing story in the western village of Buena Vista, near the vicinity of Spanish Lookout, Cayo. A string of dubious cheques has emerged in the name of one member of the Village's Water Board. Money of equivalent value is missing, and he has to answer questions because the immediate perception is that he pocketed money he ought not to have access to. It has wider implications because this money is public funds to be used to fund the village's water access. Our news team has been out in Cayo following up the story, and Courtney Weatherburne Reports: Iris Yande Garcia, Buena Vista Villager "We have to wash early in the morning and we had to wait for the water." Courtney Weatherburne reporting 24 year old Iris Yande Garcia is only one of the residents who had to wait for the water supply to be restored to the village this morning. It was cut out last night at around 8. And turned back on until around 10 this morning. But this is not just another case of not to pay the water bill. The residents are paying for the service but according to the chairman of the Village Council, the bulk of the money is being pocketed for personal use.

    Police Officer On Duty Assaulted; Left Hospitalized
    Often in the news, we tell you about allegations of police brutality in which officers on duty are accused of attacking members of the public. But the story tonight is that a police officer on duty became the victim of an assault which has left him hospitalized with head injuries. So, what's the reasoning behind it? Well, it appears that the man who assaulted him simply wanted to steal his car. Today, the Commander of the Eastern Divisions Criminal Investigations Branch disclosed the details of the attack on Constable Jason Hall: Supt. Hilberto Romero, O.C., CIB, Belize City Police "We had an incident yesterday in the general area of Rhaburn Ridge on the Phillip Goldson Highway where Police Constable Jason Hall received a blowout on his vehicle; he got assistance to repair and get the vehicle going. At some point, the said person that assisted him inflicted an injury to the side of his face after which he stole the vehicle and made his way to Orange Walk. The constable regained consciousness thereafter and he asked for assistance. The police came and he was taken to the Karl Heusner Memorial Hospital where he remains in a critical condition. An investigation was conducted. The suspect were detained and brought to Belize City in connection to this incident. The vehicle was also recovered."

    Any Headway In The Investigation Of Mumuch's Murder?
    Last night, we told you about 23 year old Desmond Usher also known as "Mumuch" was found yesterday at around 8:30 a.m. in Mahogany Heights. He left his house on Friday night, after 3 days, he was discovered, with obvious signs of violence on his body. The police were unavailable yesterday for comment, but Superintendent Hilberto Romero fielded questions on it from the press. Here are the police details as they know it at this time: Supt. Hilberto Romero, O.C., CIB, Belize City Police "On Monday the 29th June, 2015, police personnel visited an area off a road at Mahogany Heights where they found the lifeless body of Desmond Usher, partly decomposed. He was last seen alive on Friday. Post mortem was conducted on the spot and he had blunt trauma injuries to the head. An investigation is being conducted at this time, we have several persons in custody and we are continuing with this investigation."

    Police Need Help To Solve The Murders of The Teenage Students
    As we told you last night, the two high school students, 15 year-old Tyrique Thompson, 16 year-old Reuben Leslie succumbed to gunshot injuries they suffered to the head. At this time, there is no plausible explanation as to why 2 young men with no apparent gang connection would be killed so mercilessly. So, do police have any answers at this time? That's what we asked today: Supt. Hilberto Romero, O.C., CIB, Belize City Police "We had Tarique Thompson who succumbed to his injuries on the twenty-sixth day of June 2015 and Reuben Leslie also succumbed to his injuries on the twenty-seventh day of June, 2015. These were two shooting incidents. One of them was shot on Magazine Road and the other had been shot on Lakeview Street." Daniel Ortiz "Sir we are told that it is in the same general vicinity, the same neighborhood. Are police looking into an angle that it may be connected in some fashion?"

    Accused Of Owning Killer Dogs, Patnett Is Acquitted
    Viewers may remember the public outrage caused when 65 year old man Edmund Spain was killed by 2 vicious pitbulls. Well, the defendant who was criminally charged with his death has been acquitted because the prosecution was unable to establish the ownership of the dogs. She's 31 year old Shelda Patnett, a store clerk of Tropical park, Hattieville, who stood trial for manslaughter by negligence in the court of Justice John Gonzalez. It was alleged by the Crown that on May 31, 2010, two dogs purportedly owned by Patnett, attacked Spain. He was bitten on his right hand and he succumbed to his injuries 5 days later at Karl Heusner Memorial Hospital. The prosecution called 9 witnesses to prove that Patnett was negligent and that she was the owner of the dogs. But there was no evidence of negligence and there was no evidence that Patnett was the owner of the dogs. In addition to that there was no evidence that Patnett resided at the house where the dogs were.

    BTIA Vs The NCL Project To Court
    Recently, the lawsuit between Developer Mike Feinstein, the Government and the Principals of the Fort Street Tourism Village, has been making the news regularly over the future of cruise tourism in Belize City. Well today, the lawsuit on the other big development, Norwegian Cruise Line's Harvest Caye started in the Supreme Court. The BTIA is challenging separate decisions of NEAC and DOE in relation to the environmental impact assessment (EIA) for Harvest Caye, a project managed by Belize Island Holdings Limited on behalf of Norwegian Cruise Lines. The BTIA argues that the NEAC decision to recommend approval of the EIA without a public hearing and in violation of environmental law statutes and the DOE decision to approve the EIA in contravention of the terms of reference and minimum requirements of the law, as well as a legitimate expectation that the Government would abide by the National Sustainable Tourism Master Plan which outlaws mass cruise tourism in the South.

    Delroy Cuthkelvin Offers Candidacy; PM Says Stand Down
    Last week, we told you how UDP's Melvin Hulse willingly threw himself on his sword and resigned as the Standard Bearer for Stann West. That's after 4 days of scandal which raged in the wake of a leaked conversation in which he was backbiting his Party Leader and Prime Minister. We've told you how the Stann Creek West Executive Committee has chosen its chairman, Nathan Young, as the man who should become Hulse's successor. Well, two other players have emerged on the scene, but the most controversial character who's expressed interest is Delroy Cuthkelvin. Viewers will remember that at the convention held in March of last year, Melvin Hulse was chosen in an open convention to return as standard bearer. That's a convention which Cuthkelvin contested but one which he boycotted last minute after complaining that the party had taken off his voters approved list. That's not something that should be taken lightly, but since the standard bearer's position is vacant once again, Cuthkelvin has announced that he wants back in the race. Over the weekend, he told Love News why: Delroy Cuthkelvin "As you know, the situation has arisen where Mr. Melvin Hulse has resigned from the position of Standard Bearer of the United Democratic Party in Stann Creek West. And so the party has indicated that there is a need for a new standard bearer and a name has been suggested by Mr. Hulse. And as the party leader said, 'if no one else has stepped up then you would have probably be endorsed'.

    FIU's New Director Discusses Titanic Losses
    9 months ago, it made headlines in practically all the news outlets in the country when the US Department of Justice unsealed indictments accusing offshore securities trading companies in Belize of scamming the US Government of 1 billion dollars in taxes. We're of course referring to the indictments brought against Belizean Andrew Godfrey, Bahamians securities traders, Kelvin Leach and Rohn Knowles, Canadians Brian De Wit and Cem "Jim" Can, and American Robert Bandfield. Among the accused companies were IPC Management Services, LLC; IPC Corporate Services Inc.; IPC Corporate Services LLC; Titan International Securities, Inc; Legacy Global Markets S.A; and Unicorn International Securities LLC (Unicorn). A few days later, the law enforcement agencies in Belize cleaned out the offices of Titan Securities International of every single document and electronic equipment. The Attorney General's Ministry and the Financial Intelligence Unit also got orders of the Supreme Court to freeze the financial assets of these defendants which were in Belizean banks.

    Was There An FIU Investigation Into The Immigration Scandal?
    One more inquiry which the press took the opportunity to ask of the FIU Director was a supposed investigation into the immigration scandals. Yes, they've become ghosts… remembered now and again by the politicians from the Opposition Party who remind that a great wrong was committed against national patrimony 18 months or so ago. So, we thought we'd ask the new director for an update on it. He told us that he had no information to share on it at that moment: Eric Eusey - Director, FIU "I am not aware of that investigation, it may have come as a request probably from the Auditor General but I am not aware that that investigation was ongoing." Daniel Ortiz "So then sir, this whole immigration scandal which there was a private constitution attempt that failed. An appeal of that private prosecution that failed. DPP office said it cannot get involved unless there are certain things done by the police, then the Ministry of the National Security says that the police are the ones involved with it. But there seems to be no movement with it all together and now you're saying that the FIU is not aware of the case. Does that mean that it has been left on the way side?"

    The PUP Fix To the Petrocaribe Law
    Since Friday, we've been telling you how the PUP walked out of the biggest House Meeting on the calendar year yet. They were supposed to debate the amendments to the Petrocaribe Loans Act, but then, the Speaker had Senator Patrick Andrews ejected. The PUP followed behind, and with them went all the research and preparation made to challenge the Government in a proper debate. So now, the PUP has to resort to a media manufactured discussion to inform the general public on what their position is, something which the Prime Minister refers to as a cheap knock-off. Still, we must oblige the Opposition on their agenda, since they make up portion of the Elected Representatives in the House. So there's one more excerpt we must share with you, the viewers. It involves the Leader of the Opposition's revelation of a Petrocaribe Revenue Management Bill, a document drafted as their fix to the problem that Petrocaribe access creates. Here's that explanation from Francis Fonseca: Hon. Francis Fonseca, Leader of the Opposition "A team of legal advisors headed by Senior Counsel Andrew Marshalleck, has examine this very important issue of the Petrocaribe loans act and have come up with a draft "Petrocaribe revenue Management Fund Bill 2015." This bill is not drafted from scratch. It is fashioned from Belize's Petroleum Revenue Management Fund act, which in turn was based on recommendations from the Commonwealth Secretariat Petroleum advisors to Belize. Our draft bill proposes the introduction of Petrocaribe revenue management fund provisions on the use of the fund, provisions dealing with annual as well as exceptional withdrawals from the fund an independent oversight board drawn from a list of esteem local organizations and transparency and public access to information."

    Central Bank On Political Spending Of Public Funds
    And Recently, whenever the Opposition Party criticizes public spending from the UDP government, the members usually imply or directly accuse the Barrow Administration of using public funds - or Petrocaribe funds - for political patronage. The suggestion is usually that these important monies, which are often needed elsewhere, but instead, they are spent to court voters or keep them loyal to the party. So, what does the Governor of the Central Bank have to say about such an accusation being repeated at every opportunity? That's what we asked him yesterday, and he told us that there is no evidence that he has seen to support it: Daniel Ortiz "As far as you're aware as the banker of the government, can this allegation of public funds being used for politicking by the UDP government be a legitimate case that can be made to the general public?" Glen Ysaguirre - Governor, Central Bank of Belize "I haven't seen any evidence to indicate if that can be so. Whether or not the government makes or as a policy, the government in its budget makes allocation for instance to provide money for constituencies and area representatives to host these social events. From my understanding of the Petrocaribe arrangement, and I was at the anniversary celebration this morning, there is a component intended for social activities and social events. "

    SSB Approved Loans For Citrus And Banana Companies; Any Connection To Jonny Zabs?
    Last week, news broke that the Social Security Board had approved loans to two companies Meridian Enterprises Limited and Diverse Development Limited. One is a banana growing company and the other is a citrus processing company. But, there has been a lingering suspicion that Johnny Zabaneh has some interests, either as a beneficiary, or as the personality behind the curtains that is orchestrating the push for financing. Viewers may be well aware that Zabaneh is one of the biggest banana producers in the south, but in 2012, he was blacklisted by The U.S. Department of the Treasury's Office of Foreign Assets Control. This sanction, under the US Kingpin Act, prevents any US Nationals and US companies from conducting business with him, and it has put a hurting on his business empire. So, that's why when the proposals from both companies landed on the desk of the SSB Investment Committee and they were approved, eyebrows were raised. We got an opportunity to ask the Chairman about it yesterday. Here's what he had to say about the risk of the investment of the contributions made by the workers of the nation:

    The Marijuana Decriminalizing Committee Sticks To 10 Grams
    That's what SSB Chairman Doug Singh had to say on the recent loan approvals. He also wears the hat as a member of the Committee looking into the Decriminalization of Marijuana. So, we took the opportunity to ask him for an update. As we've shown you months ago, the committee is proposing to the Government to decriminalize the possession of 10 grams of marijuana or less. The committee is also proposing to lessen the penalties of this quantity of week. Instead of being jailed and being given a criminal record if convicted, a person will be given a fine. But in the era of mass decriminalization and legalization of weed in other parts of the world, pro-marijuana persons say that 10 grams is too limited a quantity to remove criminal penalties for. They are pushing for larger amounts, and since Jamaica, as of February, has decriminalized up to 2 ounces. That's almost 57 grams, six times the amount in this proposal, and so since then, has the Committee revisited its figure to Cabinet? Singh said "no" in our conversation yesterday. Here's how he explained why not:

    Armed Robbery At Atlantic Insurance Belmopan
    A woman was held up at knife point at her workplace in Belmopan. It happened on Friday evening between 4:30 and 5 at the Atlantic Insurance Company in the Garden City Plaza. The Office Manager 28 year old Mishelene Guerra was alone in the office and was getting ready to close up when two men walked in and held her up at knife point. The men then tied her up with shoelaces and stole an undisclosed amount of money along with several of her personal items. After the men ran off, she let herself loose and called the police. When we spoke to Belmopan police this evening they told us that they are looking for these two men in connection with this incident. This is the second burglary in Belmopan in about a week. The other happened on the 18th at The Belize Infrastructure Limited at the Market Square. In this case, the culprits entered the building through the roof and stole an assortment of electronic devices. Police still haven't caught those men in connection with that burglary and they told us that they do not have sufficient evidence to link both incidents. Police continue to follow lead on both cases.

    A Child-Friendly Family Court
    Child friendly isn't the term that comes to mind when you talk about court rooms. But, the fact is, children are very much a part of court proceedings and so the first child friendly family court was officially inaugurated today in Punta Gorda. The construction of the child friendly family court began in December of last year and was completed last week. The 2 story court building has 2 child friendly interview rooms, 2 one way mirror rooms and a play area for the kids. The construction of this building is just a part of a joint project between UNICEF and the Supreme Court called "Promoting Children's Access to Justice". This project also entails institutional reform of the court system to better cater to and protect children involved in court cases. Efforts are being made to build another child friendly family court in San Ignacio. The overall cost of this project is $1 million and will run for about 3 years.

    Police Influence In Resisting Gang Life
    This morning four hundred and sixty four Belize City students graduated from the police department's Gang Resistance Education and Training Program. GREAT - as it is better known is one of the department's attempts at intervention into the lives of the children. It is a life skills program facilitated by police officer. The program first started out as a pilot project in 2011 and quickly expanded. Today 7news was present at the graduation. Two thousand and fifty students from around the country are graduates of this year's program

    A Summer Camp For Photography
    This afternoon 7news caught up with a group of photography students in one of their sessions. The youngsters partake in the 2 day workshop this week to help improve on their skills. The sessions were facilitated by Dirk Francisco: Francisco will be conducting other photography sessions throughout the summer.

    The New SISE Bridge In Cayo
    The residents of San Ignacio and Santa Elena will finally have a new bridge. Today the contract for the construction of the bridge was signed at the Ministry of Works and according to the design plan the bridge will have unique safety features and help with ease the heavy traffic on the road. The CEO in the Ministry of Works told us more. The project costs $19,961,575 Belize Dollars and is funded by the Government and the CDB.

    Channel 5

    Cop Beaten & Left for Dead
    Stories of police brutality are mainstays in our newscast, but tonight, the report is that a police officer is on the receiving end. The constable Jason Hall attached to precinct [...]

    Mumuch Laid to Rest
    There is closure tonight for the Usher family who earlier today lay to rest one of their own: Desmond Usher, a twenty-three year old resident of the Mahogany Heights community [...]

    Police Clueless in Murders of 2 Teenagers
    Two Belize City high school teenagers were murdered last week following separate shooting incidents on Monday and Wednesday nights in the Old Capital. Fifteen year old Tarique Thompson was shot [...]

    Should the Opposition have walked out of the House Meeting on Friday?
    And our question for tonight is: Do you believe the Opposition should have walked out of the House Meeting on Friday? Send your comments and responses using your SMART phones [...]

    Woman Walks From Manslaughter Charge
    For the past five years, thirty-one year old year Shelda Patnett has been waiting for her day in court to prove that she was not the owner of two pit [...]

    City Residents who Shots Cops Remanded
    Two police officers on motorcycle patrol over the weekend were shot at, but fortunately the gunman missed his targets. But the alleged shooter, Phillip Bowen, ran out of luck when the [...]

    Police Investigate Separate Allegations of Sexual Abuse
    There are two heinous reports of a sexual nature to report tonight. In Silk Grass in the southern Belize, a young boy was sexually abused by someone he knew well, [...]

    UNICEF Opens Child-Friendly Family Court
    The Supreme Court, with support from UNICEF, officially opened Punta Gorda’s first child-friendly Family Court. In release issued, the child-friendly court is hailed as “a leading milestone and part of [...]

    Will Delroy Be Allowed to Contest Stann Creek West?
    U.D.P. loyalist, Delroy Cuthkelvin’s intention to contest the upcoming convention in Stann Creek West, is almost dead in the water.  Cuthkelvin has worn several hats within his party including working [...]

    1 Week to Dangriga Bye-Election
    In other political news…Just one week away, Belize will see its second bye-election. The first was in Cayo North earlier this year and this time it will be the constituency [...]

    Fonseca Says P.U.P. Poised for Victory in General Elections
    And after that bye-election is over on July eight, the focus is the road to General Elections. While speculations are that it may be as early as the end of [...]

    FIU Director Speaks on Anti-Money Laundering Progress…
    Belize has come under intense scrutiny from agencies within the region for failure to meet international standards in the fight against money laundering and terrorist financing.  The Caribbean Financial Action [...]

    …Says FIU Has Undergone Internal Strengthening
    Those shortcomings, according to Eusey, were quite a few, beginning with laws and amendments that were both antiquated.  The move, he says, has been to successfully bolster the autonomy of [...]

    GREAT Program Graduates 400
    The Police Department held a graduation ceremony for its GREAT Program students today at the Bliss.  The program, which official got underway in 2008, is operated under the umbrella of [...]

    G.O.B. Provides Update on Citizenship in 2014
    Friday’s House meeting was cut short after the Opposition People’s United Party walked out in protest, but a lot was still said inside and outside the House. The P.U.P. used [...]

    Julius Espat Says House Speaker is a U.D.P. Agent
    When the P.U.P. lost its national audience in the House last Friday, they made up for it with a fiery impromptu press session outside. We’ve brought you much of what [...]

    Espat Blasts Government for Petrocaribe Spending
    Espat has led the Opposition’s charge where the use of Petrocaribe money is concerned. In fact, he is named as the claimant in a lawsuit seeking the Court’s judgment on [...]

    APBEL Celebrates 10 Years of Petrocaribe
    While Espat is concerned about the spending of Petrocaribe funds, the initiative turned ten on Monday. The milestone achievement was celebrated in grand fashion at the APBEL office in Belize [...]

    CTV3

    One Person Detained For Attacking Police Constable
    Yesterday we told you about the police constable who was attacked and his vehicle stolen as he made his way to work from Corozal Town to Belize. Today, police in Orange Walk are reporting that the person who placed a beating on 36 year old police constable Jason Hall and then stole his vehicle has been has been caught and his vehicle has been recovered. For context, around 3:25p.m yesterday, Hall, who hails from Corozal Town, was repairing a flat tire on his car along with another male person when that same individual hit Hall on the head with an object. The male person then left the area in the constable’s vehicle. Hall then made his way to the village of Rhaburn Ridge where he was assisted and taken to the Northern Regional Hospital for treatment. Hall’s 4-door Mazda was recovered on Pine Street here in Orange Town and as mentioned one man has been detained pending charges of Aggravated Assault.

    Ministry of Education Looks Deeply Into PSE Results
    Last week we reported on the recognition given to the highest ranking Primary School Examination students. Although there is the general fluctuation in the results which we have been seeing for a number of years now, all three, the Math, English and Science have dipped slightly. This year the results revealed Social Studies making a rebound when compared to last year. The Ministry says that the average has remained constant over ten years with spikes in 2008 and 2010, but with a slight overall increase over the last four years. And so looking into next year’s PSE, the Ministry is looking at several methods to introduce that can positively impact the students’ performance. Deputy CEO in the Ministry of Education, Allan Genitty says under the School improvement planning initiative they plan on developing a Parents Association. “The research has shown that whenever you have parental involvement in the child’s wellbeing and the academic schooling children do better in school and not only that but we wanted to move away from parents only being called upon to do fund raising but to be more involved in the whole academic improvement and the school improvement that we hope it will come about with the school improvement planning initiative.”

    Search For Missing Fisherman Suspended
    And in an update to a story we ran on Friday, after three days of continuous searches, officials at the National Belize Coast Guard have suspended their efforts in locating missing at sea captain, Leoli Varela. The 80 year old was reported missing at sea on Thursday night. Reports are that he was on-board his tug boat traveling with cargo from San Pedro to the Belize Port with his crew. The weather conditions that evening were less than favourable with high winds, choppy seas and heavy rains and while the tugboat was pulling the barge into the Port a strong squall diverted the boat’s course into the Port. The boat crew tried to avoid a collision onto the pier by detaching the barge from the tug as they were also afraid of tipping over. In the process, the tugboat collided with the barge while Varela was on deck. The impact sent him overboard, and some of the crew said that he seemed to have been injured as he fell into the water. Since then, search efforts have been futile as authorities indicate that there have been several changes in the weather conditions over the past few days. It is believed that shifts in currents may have caused the body to drift out to sea.

    Barbados Will Not See FIFA World Cup Russia 2018
    For those following the road to FIFA World Cup Russia 2018, then you should know that Barbados has been booted out of the FIFA 2018 World Cup qualifiers. They have paid the penalty for playing an ineligible player in the return leg of their second round qualifier against Aruba at the Usain Bolt Sports Complex on June 14th. Winger Hadan Holligan had two previous yellow cards and should have missed the match. Ironically, Holligan scored the only goal of the game and gave the home team a 3-0 aggregate after they had won the first leg 2-0 in Aruba on June 10th. A release on FIFA’s website declared that Barbados had forfeited the game and awarded a 3-0 victory to Aruba as well, giving the Dutchmen the upper hand to reach the next round.

    CWU Signs New Collective Bargaining Agreement
    This afternoon the Christian Workers Union singed a new Collective Bargaining Agreement with the Central Bank of Belize to cover the Bank’s Security Officers. During the signing CWU President Audrey Matura Shepherd stated and we quote “Much credit needs to be given to our Members themselves, who were engaged in drafting their CBA.” end of quote. Signing on behalf of the bank was Central Bank Governor Glenford Ysaguirre who in his remarks voiced satisfaction with the businesslike and cordial fashion in which the negotiations proceeded leading up to today’s signing. He also expressed the hope that the pending CBA to cover the rest of the CBB Staff, also represented by CWU as a separate Bargaining Unit, will follow a similar course once negotiations start in July.

    Fishermen Of Sarteneja Fall Victims To Pirates
    Lobster is a delicacy to many, but have we ever wondered how many tedious hours of labor fisherman put into bringing in the day’s catch? Or worst even, the risk that they go through while at sea? Since the opening of the Lobster season many fishermen have reported that they have fallen victims to pirates. But these are not men who are after gold. What they are after is the fishermen’s product. One fisherman who has fallen victim to pirates while out at sea, is Ferbanto Guerrero who told us that all his product was stolen by ruthless criminals. “Mi primer viaje que estamos dando fuimos asaltados por los piratas, nos pararon y puro cuerno de chivo tienen haya e hicieron que nos votemos al agua y se llevaron el bote y el producto y fuimos fracasado y nos dijeron que no nos quieren ver más allá y que son sus aguas de ellos y que no van a permitir a nadie haya, ya hemos dado reporte al Coast Guard y ellos no hacen nada solo van los agarran y los vuelven a soltar.”

    Police Hunts For Man Assaulting a Ten Year Old Female Minor
    Tonight there is disturbing news coming out of Corozal Town involving a ten year old female minor and a man whom police are looking for. The individual is being accused of fondling the ten year old on several instances. She, in the company of her mother, reported the matter to police yesterday. The mother told authorities that on the 25th of June while she decided to check on the minor who was taking a bath, she discovered that the male person who they both know was fondling her daughter on her private parts. The mother also reported that the minor told her that she has been assaulted on several occasions.

    LOVE FM

    Rotary clubs worldwide change executive members
    At midnight tonight more than 34 thousand Rotary Clubs in 210 countries will boast new executive members. The incoming governor for Rotary District 4250 which comprises Belize, Honduras and Guatemala is Dr. Rene Villanueva. Dr. Rene Villanueva – Governor, Rotary District 4250 “As we start the new Rotary Year 2015-2016 I take this opportunity to […]

    Over four hundred students graduate from Police Department’s GREAT program
    The Gang Resistance Educational and Training, GREAT Program, has been targeting schools kids to stay away from gang activities and focus on their education. The program has been impacting the lives of thousands of students across the country and today, 464 students from eight primary schools in Belize City were recognized for successfully completing the […]

    Central Bank Governor speaks on Petro Caribe payback
    Yesterday we aired a portion of the interview with the Governor of the Central bank, Glenford Ysaquirre. The topic was Petro Caribe and the process that the Government follows in order to access money from that account. Now one key question that has been raised in the public forum is how will Belize pay back […]

    First child friendly court opens its doors
    The first child friendly Family court in Belize was opened earlier today in Punta Gorda. The new building was designed to be suitable for children and includes child-friendly play rooms as well as interview rooms with video link equipment. With the use of this technology those working in the court will be able to ensure […]

    Belize City man charged with burglary
    Forty year old Sheffield Brown, was charged with burglary and damage to property when he appeared today before Senior Magistrate Sharon Fraser. Brown pled not guilty to the charges. He was offered a bail of five thousand dollars and his case was adjourned until August 30. The incident occurred around 11:30 p.m. on June 27. […]

    Woman acquitted of manslaughter by negligence charges
    Thirty-one year old Shelda Patnett, a store clerk of Tropical Park, Hattieville, charged with manslaughter by negligence, was acquitted of the charge today in the court of Justice John Gonzalez. It was alleged by the Crown that on May 31, 2010, two dogs purportedly owned by Patnett, bit 65 year old Edmund Spain. Spain was […]

    Man charged for shooting at police officers
    Twenty-two year old Phillip Bowen, a resident of Freedom Street, was charged with two counts of aggravated assault with a firearm against two police officers when he appeared today before Senior Magistrate Sharon Fraser. Bowen pled not guilty to the charges. He was remanded into custody until August 14. Two police constables, Anton Simpson and […]

    Doug Singh updates on marijuana decriminalization
    Doug Singh is also the chairman of the Committee looking into Decriminalization of marijuana in Belize and he gave us an update on that matter. Doug Singh – Chairman, SSB “The bottom line is that the committee was tasked with the decriminalization, not the legalization. I think there are tremendous differences between what Jamaica has […]

    Social Security Chairman speaks on one point five million dollar investment
    A couple of weeks ago we noticed that the Social Security Board publicized a notice of investment in the local newspaper. The notice read that the SSB Board proposed to lend 1.5 million dollars to Diverse Development Limited for quote, “purchase of fertilizers and other inputs”, end of quote. After we got a hold of […]

    FIU Director updates on recent bust
    In last night’s newscast, we told you about the press conference of the Financial Intelligence Unit where they shared good news about Belize’s international standing after it participated in the Caribbean Financial Action Task Force’s Plenary Meeting in Port of Spain, Trinidad. Well during the press conference, the media asked the Director of the FIU, […]

    Caye Caulker Chronicles

    Belizean Sailors To Take Part In Optimist North American Championship
    While no Hicaqueno sailor is being represented in this international meet, we tip our hats nonetheless to all the little sailors of Caye Caulker who have made us proud and continue to make us proud, and to the adults who work tirelessly to make it happen for them. The Belize Sailing Association (BzSA) is a fledgling NGO born a mere 5 years ago. The majority of its members do not themselves know how to sail. A handful or two are self-taught sailors, and fewer members than that were professionally trained and have extensive sailing and racing experience under their belts. The non-sailors rally support, because, like the experienced sailors, they have witnessed first hand how sailing leads to a child’s joy and to early development of essential life-skills including critical thinking, self-esteem and confidence, the ability to focus and concentrate, and social skills.

    Amandala

    Speaker removes PUP senator … for laughing too loudly!
    –In the recent months, there has been much public debate and commentary from social partners over the controversial Petrocaribe Loans Amendment, and in response to concerns raised by social partners since the bill was approved by Parliament in March, an amendment was tabled in the House of Representatives today, as well as a set of supplementary appropriation bills to cover unbudgeted spending for the last fiscal year and for the first quarter of the 2015-2016 fiscal year, as well as proposed spending for the next quarter. Whereas it was expected that the debate on the Petrocaribe amendment and supplementary appropriation bills would have been the highlight of today’s House meeting, a walk-out by the Opposition People’s United Party at 11:20 this morning—over the ejection of Senator Patrick Andrews, who laughed aloud while United Democratic Party Collet area representative Patrick Faber was talking—stole the show. It all unfolded after Prime Minister and Minister of Finance Dean Barrow introduced a supplementary appropriation bill, amounting to $15,958,604, for the fiscal year 2014/2015.

    Two charged for murder of Hattieville taxi operator
    Two Belize City men were arraigned on a charge of murder this afternoon in connection with the shooting death of Hattieville taxi operator Patrick Spencer Tillett, 39. Charles Middleton and Cesario Chuko did not have to enter a plea after Chief Magistrate Ann Marie Smith read the murder charge to them. Smith asked the two accused men if they understood the charge, before she asked the court’s prosecutor for an adjournment date. The court prosecutor set September 25 as the adjournment date, and the Chief Magistrate remanded Middleton and Chuko to the Belize Central Prison until that date, when they will be brought back to court. Police charged Middleton and Chuko with the June 24 murder of Patrick Spencer Tillett, who was shot multiple times on Cairo Street.

    Mark Swaso, 39, found dead off South Water Caye
    A Sunday afternoon fishing outing ended tragically for a Dangriga man who works on South Water Caye as a tour guide with International Zoological Expeditions (IZE). Friends and relatives learned on Sunday afternoon that Mark Swaso, 39, also known as “Karm,” was missing and after several hours searching for him, recovered his body near the island around midday today. His body was returned to Dangriga close to 5 o’clock this evening. His wife, Trudy Joseph Swaso, said that Mark, who loved to fish in his free time and who would usually go alone on such trips, had gone on his kayak to fish near South Water Caye on Sunday, and they found out after 2:00 p.m., when he didn’t show up to take his guests snorkeling, that he was missing. Vonetta Dawson, Swaso’s relative, told Amandala that Swaso had gone to fish at about 1:00 p.m., and when she was asked if weather could have been a factor in his disappearance, she noted that the weather was fine. She also said that Swaso was a very good swimmer. His wife also mentioned that Mark was in good health.

    Was “Mumush” tortured to death?
    The search for Desmond “Mumush” Usher (also known as Myers), 23, of Mahogany Heights, who was reported missing since Saturday, concluded at about 9:30 this morning when his decomposing body was found in a pimento patch near the water reservoir behind Mahogany Heights. The body was discovered by Usher’s relatives and friends who had been searching for him since Saturday, after he failed to return home Friday night. He apparently had been beaten and tortured to death. Sharima Neal, his devastated common-law wife who was a member of the search party who found her husband, told Amandala this morning that he was at home in Mahogany Heights on Saturday, then went out, but returned at about 8:30 Saturday night, bringing her food at her mom’s house. He then told her to get ready because he would be coming back for her to take her home, but he was first going to see his father, in the village, and then he left the house.

    PUP proposes new Petrocaribe law
    The Opposition People’s United Party (PUP) leader, Hon. Francis Fonseca, invoked an old mantra of the Party, “touch one, touch all,” on Friday at the House of Representatives meeting when the Speaker of the House, Hon. Michael Peyrefitte, decided to eject PUP senator Patrick Andrews from the gallery. Because they walked out of the House meeting, the PUP parliamentarians did not take part in the debate on the amendment to the Petrocaribe Loan Act that the government side passed on in March. At a press conference this morning, Fonseca, flanked by PUP Deputy Leader, Hon. Julius Espat (the member for Cayo South and chairman of the House Public Accounts Committee), explained the PUP’s position on the amendment to the very controversial Petrocaribe Loans Act. In opening the press briefing at the PUP’s Independence Hall headquarters, Fonseca said, “The Petrocaribe Loans Act and the amendment act passed last Friday are insults to the Belizean people. These laws are not worth the paper they are written on. In every corner of this country, the call has been loud and clear: The Petrocaribe Loans Act must be repealed, not amended, repealed; it must go.”

    Guatemalans constitute largest number of persons receiving Belizean citizenship
    Guatemalans constitute the predominant national group among persons receiving Belizean citizenship. At today’s meeting of the House of Representatives, Prime Minister Dean Barrow disclosed, in answer to a question from the Opposition People’s United Party, that 104 Guatemalans were among the 439 new citizens sworn in during 2014. Barrow said that the Guatemalans had been sworn in after they renounced their Guatemalan citizenship and completed the necessary processes to become Belizean citizens. Under Belize’s Constitution, Section 29.3, “No person shall be entitled under the provisions of this Part to be a citizen of Belize or be granted citizenship of Belize if such person shows any allegiance to or is a citizen of a country which does not recognise the independence, sovereignty or territorial integrity of Belize: Provided that the Minister may in his discretion grant Belizean citizenship …”

    Belize to 2015 Optimist North American Championship
    For the first time ever, Belize is to be represented, along with 22 other countries, at the Optimist North American Championship in Antigua. Young sailors from our Belize Sailing Association will represent the Jewel, and the below article appears on the web site that introduces all the participants. 163 sailors, including 40 girls, from 23 countries will participate in the event. Participating countries are: Antigua, Argentina, Belize, Bermuda, Brazil, British Virgin Islands, Canada, Cayman, Chile, Colombia, Ecuador, Japan, Mexico, Netherlands Antilles, New Zealand, Peru, Singapore, St. Lucia, St. Vincent and the Grenadines, Switzerland, Uruguay, US Virgin Islands, and USA. Here is what they have to say about Belize: Mon. June 29, 2015–The Belize Sailing Association (BzSA) is a fledgling NGO born a mere 5 years ago. The majority of its members do not themselves know how to sail. A handful or two are self-taught sailors, and fewer members than that were professionally trained and have extensive sailing and racing experience under their belts. The non-sailors rally support, because, like the experienced sailors, they have witnessed first hand how sailing leads to a child’s joy and to early development of essential life-skills including critical thinking, self-esteem and confidence, the ability to focus and concentrate, and social skills.

    Former boxing champ, Eustace Hendy, a.k.a. “Jack Budd,” passes
    Today, residents of Cayo are saddened and mourning the passing of former boxing champion, Jack Budd, as he was affectionately known. Jack Budd was highly regarded in the boxing world and particularly popular in down town San Ignacio. Jack made himself even more popular in December, 2014, when he became one of the boxers in the grand boxing match against Ludigario “Kukulick” Paiz… Jack Budd will be missed by many. May his soul rest in peace and rise in eternal glory!

    Government’s Summer of Sports Sponsorship Programme 2015
    The National Sports Council is pleased to announce that it has completed the vetting exercise of the Government’s Summer of Sports Programme 2015. Ninety-one applicants from all over the country met the requirements and will be receiving sponsorship for their summer camps. All successful applicants have been contacted, and the National Sports Council thanks all those who applied. The successful applicants will be signing agreements and receiving their initial disbursement of funds commencing today, Friday, June 26, at 10:30 a.m. at the National Sports Council office, located at Rogers Stadium, corner Cemetery Road and Dolphin Street, Belize City.

    Knockout semifinals in Smart 13 & Under
    The last regular season games in Week 11 of the 2015 Smart 13 & Under Football Tournament took place on Saturday, June 27, at the MCC Grounds, and the stage is now set for the playoffs this coming Saturday, in which the top 4 teams will square off – #1 seed vs #4 seed, and #2 seed vs #3 seed in one-game knockout semifinals. Before our report, a correction from last week’s report on Week 10, where we erroneously allocated the Ladyville Jaguars goal to D’Jon Canelo in their important 1-nil win over rivals Hattieville Youths. Actually, D’Jon assisted on the goal, which was actually scored by Alex Croft. In the Week 11 schedule opener on Saturday, Face of Belize won by default over Third World. In game 2, Ladyville Jaguars strengthened their playoff hopes with an exciting 1-1 draw against Rising Stars, also based in Ladyville. Emilio Salazar put Rising Stars in front, but D’Jon Canelo equalized for the Jaguars. Game 3 saw Collet Strikers and Young Warriors, #2 and #3 ranked, respectively, playing to a nil-nil stalemate. These same two teams will clash in the semifinals, where a winner must be produced. In game 4 on Saturday, it was London Strikers, 1-0, over Heights FC, on a goal by Keffer Perteau. In game 5, City Boys got a goal apiece from Dwayne Tillett and Rasheed Lord, to register the 2-nil victory over Charlston FC.

    Editorial: The Southside puzzle
    Two teenaged students were separately, critically injured by gunfire on the Southside of Belize City on Monday night, June 22, and Wednesday night, June 24, respectively. Tarique Thompson, 15, a second form high school student, was shot on Monday on Lakeview Street and died over the weekend. Ruben Leslie, 16, was shot at the corner of Magazine Road and Banak Street on Wednesday, and continues to fight for his life. A few years ago, it was established by professional academic research that the frequency of gun violence and murder on the Southside of Belize City has reached civil war levels, if we use the measuring stick for such matters used by the United Nations. Nowhere in the nation-state of Belize have young boys and young men been dying at the rate they have been dying on the Southside. The irony of the situation is that nowhere in Belize is there the concentration of powerful Government Cabinet Ministers that there is on the Southside. There are six historically Southside political constituencies, and a seventh constituency which had been exclusively Northside since 1961, became partially Southside for the first time in 2008. That is Pickstock, which sent Foreign Minister/Attorney General Wilfred Elrington to the House of Representatives in the 2008 and 2012 general elections. The longtime Southside constituencies are Queen’s Square, Mesopotamia, Port Loyola, Albert, Collet, and Lake Independence. These constituencies sent in 2012, in that order, Prime Minister/Minister of Finance Dean Barrow, Housing Minister Michael Finnegan, Local Development Minister Anthony Martinez, Junior Minister Herman Longsworth, Education/Sports/Youth Minister Patrick Faber, and Junior Minister Mark King to the House of Representatives and the Cabinet Room.

    From the Publisher
    It is clear that there was an organized attempt at the highest levels of the Government of Belize to downplay the incident at the Sarstoon River Island which took place between Thursday, May 28, and Friday morning, May 29, when armed elements of the Belize Coast Guard and armed elements of the Guatemalan navy confronted each other. At the time of an incident, exactly three months before this May 28/29 incident, when armed elements of the said Guatemalan Navy kidnapped 37 Belizeans who were under the banner of Belize’s Northern Territorial Volunteers (NTV) from the same location in the Sarstoon River mouth and forced them to go to the Guatemalan port of Livingston, the response of the various Cabinet Ministers of the ruling United Democratic Party (UDP) had been inappropriate. One high-ranking leader of the Belize Government actually referred to the NTV mission as “misguided patriotism.” In the House of Representatives, the Toledo East area representative of the Opposition People’s United Party (PUP), it should be noted, took a similar line, when he criticized the NTV and similar groupings for behavior which he said would provoke violence from “those people” (the Guatemalans).

    Punta Gorda fishers dominate in outstanding fishers award
    For the first time today, 5 Belizean fishers were publicly recognized for their outstanding contributions to fisheries in Belize on the occasion of Fisherman’s Day: Vonetta Dawson of Dangriga, Toribio Parchue of Punta Gorda, Joel Casimiro of Punta Gorda, Carlton Young of Placencia and Anna Ramirez of Punta Gorda. Mrs. Ramirez was presented with the Punta Fuego Fisher of the Year award while Mr. Young was presented with the Lifetime Achievement Award. Both Ramirez, 63, and Young, 74, have been fishing for over 50 years, and they are still actively engaged in the industry. Young, born in Punta Gorda but raised in Monkey River, told us that he is planning to venture out to the seas on Wednesday. All awardees, 4 of whom are connected with Punta Gorda, were recognized at official ceremonies held at the Coastal Zone Training Room in Belize City, to commemorate Fisherman’s Day – a collaborative effort of the Belize Fisheries Department, the Wildlife Conservation Society (WCS), the Caribbean Regional Fisheries Mechanism (CRFM), the Caribbean Network of Fisherfolk Organizations (CNFO) and the Nature Conservancy, with awards organized in collaboration with Punta Fuego, a Love FM radio drama after which the awards are named.

    The untimely death of Tarique Thompson, 15
    Tarique Thompson, 15, a 2nd form student of Canaan High School, today unfortunately succumbed to gunshot wounds he suffered while making his way home at around 8:30 on Monday night in Belize City. The teenager was walking on Lakeview Street, heading to his home on Sibun Street, which is just one block away, when he was targeted by a pair of gunmen, one of whom was reportedly wearing a fisherman’s hat. Thompson was shot in the head and neck and was rushed to the Karl Heusner Memorial Hospital (KHMH), where he remained in an induced coma until around 12:00 p.m. today, when he died after clinging to life for three and a half days. His family maintained that he was a gentle, kind and mannerly young man who was not involved in any of the gang activities that took place in his neighborhood, which lies on the fringes of the nearby gang turf known as “Ghost Town”, and therefore, did not deserve such a violent, horrible fate.

    At public forum, BNTU says no to Petrocaribe Loan Act and amendment
    The government of Prime Minister Dean Barrow tabled the amendment to its controversial Petrocaribe Loans Act today in the House of Representatives, where it was not debated by the Opposition People’s United Party (PUP), whose members walked out the House due to their objection to another matter. Two days ago, however, the Petrocaribe Loans Act and its proposed amendment, which is now on its way to the Senate for approval, were the subject of a public forum by the Belize National Teachers Union, (BNTU) at the Holy Redeemer Parish Hall. In his introductory remarks at the forum, the BNTU president Luke Palacio described the amendment to the Petrocaribe Law as “cosmetic.” “The government has also refused to repeal the section that speaks to retrospectivity,” Palacio continued. “They [the government] have spent so much money without going to the National Assembly, and BNTU and its council of management said no,” Palacio further noted. He also stated that the actions of the government are heading toward “tyranny, and dictatorship.”

    APBEL celebrates 10 years of Petrocaribe in Belize
    Alba Petrocaribe Belize Energy Limited (APBEL), the Belizean company through which Petrocaribe fuel is bought from Venezuela, today commemorated the 10th anniversary of the Petrocaribe agreement between the governments of Venezuela and Belize at its headquarters on Coney Drive in Belize City. The regional social development loan program, which was the brainchild of former Venezuelan president, the late Hugo Chavez, has, of late, become one of the most widely discussed topics in local public circles, and depending on who you listen to, the spending of the funds that are made available by means of that loan program has either been touted as a means for unprecedented infrastructural works, or criticized as a slush fund through which the ruling party has been able to muscle its way to a series of political successes. A Petrocaribe alliance, which is made up of 17 Caribbean and Central American states, in addition to Venezuela, was launched in June 2005 when it was decided through the Bolivarian Alliance of the Americas that the initiative would go beyond oil production to promote economic cooperation as well.

    Barrow says Maya needed eviction order from court
    The attempt by the Maya of Santa Cruz to evict Rupert Myles, a Creole Belizean who has a child and common-law wife living in the village, and the subsequent move by law enforcement authorities to arrest several Maya villagers, the village alcalde, Manuel Pop, and Maya activist, Cristina Coc, have fueled a national debate, and today, Prime Minister Dean Barrow, who reiterated the Government’s commitment to put proper systems in place to make provisions for special rights of the indigenous Maya, issued a call in the House of Representatives Friday, via a formal statement, for Belizeans to exercise maturity and restraint, by abiding by the status quo until progress can be achieved on this front and discouraged confrontation and violence. Barrow recalled the recent airing on national television of “very graphic and extremely disturbing images” of Myles tied hand and foot and imprisoned by Maya Belizeans in the village of Santa Cruz and footage of an earlier encounter of Cristina Coc of the Maya Leaders Alliance and another ethnically mixed Belizean, Joseph Estephan. He added that both what was said by Coc and what was done by Santa Cruz villagers raise some hinge issues that he felt the need to address. He went on to clarify that the consent judgment entered earlier this year by the Caribbean Court of Justice in the Maya Land Rights case did not supersede the Constitution and laws of Belize, nor did it transfer sovereignty over any part of national territory from Government to any particular ethnic group.

    CARICOM states strong objection to EU “blacklist”
    The Caribbean Community Secretariat has recorded its strong objection to a recent action by the European Union, listing Belize and several other Caribbean territories as international tax havens, as a part of a scheme which the EU has launched to crack down on tax avoidance. “The Caribbean Community (CARICOM) strongly objects to the recent decision by the European Commission to ‘blacklist’ a number of Member States of CARICOM on the pretext that there is no cooperation on tax law enforcement with the countries of the European Union (EU),” the statement from the Caribbean Community on European Union List of Non-Co-operative Tax Jurisdictions and Countries said. CARICOM goes on to say that the assertion by the EU “is patently false in view of the continued efforts made by member states to comply with the onerous and unilateral regulatory measures put forward by the Organisation of Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD) which sets international standards on tax cooperation.” As our newspaper noted when we reported the story, Belize has signed a string of agreements with several foreign countries, including some belonging to the EU.

    Breaking Belize NewsPJ

    O.W. P.C. critical after beating in Rhaburn Ridge
    Police Constable Jason Hall is in critical condition at the Karl Heusner Memorial Hospital after being beaten by a would-be Good Samaritan on Monday. Orange Walk police captured the suspect, who is now in Belize City expecting charges of aggravated assault. Around 3:25 in the afternoon Constable Hall […]

    Girl, 10, molested in Corozal
    Police are seeking a man of Corozal Town pending charges of indecent sexual assault against a female child aged 10. According to police, the student and her mother told them that she was first touched by the suspect, who is known to her about three weeks before making […]

    FIU, PM laud banking compliance
    Caribbean countries listed recently by the European Union for being “non-cooperative jurisdictions” in the offshore services sector have hit back at the designation, saying they are in fact fully or largely compliant. Fighting to ensure that their correspondent banking relationships appears undamaged, the countries have gotten support from the […]

    Police graduate 400 GREAT students
    The Gang Resistance Education and Training Program (GREAT) of the Belize Police Department held ceremonies in Belize City today for over 400 students from eight City schools. This program was not about math and ABC’s, but about helping them avoid the lure of the gang lifestyle. Officer in […]

    More consultation planned over marijuana
    The Government of Belize has entertained proposals for a decriminalization of possession of ten grams of marijuana. This puts Belize well behind regional counterparts such as Jamaica which has decriminalized small amounts of marijuana since April and anticipates a taxed and regulated medical marijuana sector. But here in […]

    Social Security Board allowed loans to Zabaneh companies?
    The Investment Committee of the Social Security Board (SSB) has approved loans to two companies based in the banana and citrus belt in Belize in the Independence area. They are Meridian Enterprises Limited and Diverse Investments Limited. But behind the innocuous names, some see the moving shadow of […]

    Police looking for answers after “Mumuch” death
    Superintendent of Police Hilberto Romero, officer in charge of Eastern Division Criminal Investigation Branch, says police investigations haven’t gotten very far in the death of 23 year old Desmond Usher, also known as “Mumuch.” His body was found 8:30 Monday morning in a remote area of Mahogany Heights […]

    Woman acquitted of manslaughter over dogs
    It was a cause celebre five years ago when two dogs bit a senior citizen so badly that he died in the Tropical Park area of Hattieville, Belize District. 65 year old Edmund Spain sustained dog bites to his right hand and died five days later in hospital. […]

    Search suspended for missing TugBoat Captain
    The family of eighty year old San Pedro businessman, Leovijildo Varela is today coming to grips with the reality that they may not locate their loved one who was lost at sea last week Thursday. Reports are that Varela was thrown off of a tugboat which was pulling a barge […]

    Accused murderers of taxi driver charged
    39 year old Patrick Spencer, also known as Patrick Dean Tillett, was murdered on Wednesday night, June 24, in Belize City. The taxi operator of Hattieville who worked in Belize City was socializing on Cairo Street when he was shot several times in the left armpit and arm […]

    International Sourcesizz

    29 local residents provide medical care on mission trip to Belize
    First Baptist Church of Conway, First Nazarene Church of Conway, Second Baptist Church of Conway and Fellowship Bible Church of Conway had 29 medical and dental team members provide care for a small town in Belize from May 23 to 31, 2015. A clinic was constructed in the local Nazarene Church of Succotz. The team triaged 1,451 people, filled 3,046 prescriptions, performed 74 dental extractions and five dental fillings, distributed 450 pairs of glasses, and distributed 600 Bibles; 33 people decided to follow Christ. The team also visited two orphanages and provided medical and dental care to King’s Children’s Home in Cotton Tree Village, with 80 children ranging in age from 12 months to 18 years, and Maria’s House of Hope in Mountain View, with 20 children ages 2 months to 18 years.

    Marines offer tougher training in Central American exercise
    Marines turned up the heat in Belize during an annual partnership exercise this month, offering more demanding training, as well as new riverine and jungle warfare tracks. About 250 troops from Mexico, Central America and the Caribbean participated in the second phase of Tradewinds 2015 alongside about 100 Marines. Roughly two dozen of those Marines hailed from the brand-new Special Purpose Marine Air-Ground Task Force-South, which deployed in early June to provide humanitarian support and assistance to Central American nations during the six-month hurricane season.

    C’bean countries urged to pay closer attention to crime and security
    A three-day Caribbean Basin Security Initative (CBSI) conference began here Monday, with Barbados urging regional countries to pay closer attention to the crime and security agenda agreed to by the regional leaders in 2013. Attorney General Adriel Brathwaite said he was also concerned that with CARICOM leaders due to meet here later this week, not enough attention was being paid to establishing the crime and security strategy. “We have the strategy, we have the organs that are supposed to implement the strategy, but it is my opinion that we are not giving the organs the wherewithal to implement it,” said Brathwaite, who is also Minister of Home Affairs. Brathwaite was addressing the opening of the Customs and Border Protection Border Security Professional Exchange conference, being held under the theme “Information Sharing and Collaboration as a Strategy to Counter Transnational Criminal Organisations”. He told delegates that regional Governments had a responsibility to ensure that the vehicles used to implement the crime and security strategies in the region were given the necessary resources without totally relying on the United States or other international partners.

    Caribbean Countries Demand Removal from EU Tax Haven List
    The Organization of Eastern Caribbean States said it is determined to have 13 Caribbean countries removed from the European Union’s list of 30 international tax havens. “We said we are going to aggressively pursue getting this thing to be removed,” the current OECS chairman, Grenada Prime Minister Keith Mitchell, said Monday at a meeting of the group. “It is not a positive assessment, so therefore it is something we must move to get rid of and that’s why collectively we are going to do whatever we have to do and we are taking our case to the CARICOM (Caribbean Community) region, because Barbados was also named,” he said.

    Videos

  • Belize Mission Trip, 30min. from Willowbrook Community Church

  • Caye Caulker 2014-2015, 2min. New years trip to Caye Caulker, Belize

  • Eco Kids Summer Camp 2015 by Chaa Creek!, 2min.

  • Belize w skrócie, 3min. scuba, with whale sharks

  • Benque Marimba Youths, San Pedro Fiesta, Belize, 2min. Musical rendition in celebration of the Feast of San Pedro, June 2015.

  • Got 2 Belize It (Vlog #4), 6min. Week 2 in Belize. Filled mostly with funny animals, drinks, and random activities. Thanks for watching!!

  • LEAF CUTTER ANTS IN BELIZE, 1/2min.

  • Ghost Hunters International (S3 E9) - The Crystal Maiden, 44min. San Ignacio, Belize - Actun Tunichil Muknal Caves and Queaux, France - Château de Fougeret. Spinoff to the SciFi original, Ghost Hunters, Ghost Hunters ...

  • Wedding in Belize!, 4min. Our wedding in San Pedro, Belize

  • Project Belize - Bonefish, 6min. Bonefish and Tarpon Trust.

  • Belize Family Vacation 2015 Part 2 San Pedro, 5min.

  • Placencia, Belize, 7min. Lobster Festival in Placencia, Belize! Courtesy of the amazing Mrs. Audrey of Foresters Lodge!

  • Benque Marimba Youths, San Pedro Fiesta June 2015 Belize, 15min. El coco no, Benque Marimba Youths Belize.

  • Belize Week One (Vlog #3), 10min.

  • Mexico Rocks in Belize - Scuba diving, 6min. Sea turtles, nurse sharks, sting rays, eels, and lots of beautiful fish Blusmart HD 1080P

  • Skydiving into the Blue Hole, Belize, 8.5min.


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