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April 25, 2017


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Specials and Events

Last night's TV news on Channel 7, Channel 5, LOVETV, PGTV, West Vision (Cayo) and CTV 3. Also with the most recent Open Your Eyes, and other specials


The San Pedro Sun

Senator Elena Smith is BNTU’s new president
Senator for Labour and Civil Society Elena Smith was elected as Belize National Teachers Union’s (BNTU) new president. Not only does Smith have a 20-year membership within the union, but she is also the first woman to become BNTU’s national president. Held under the theme, “BNTU –Advocating for a Better Belize by Defending Collective Bargaining and Freedom of Association”, the election took place during the second day of the 57th Annual BNTU Convention in San Roman, Corozal at the Escuela Secundaria Technica Mexico’s Auditorium. Out of 636 votes, Smith gained the majority with 349 votes, while her opponents, Mario Mesh (President of the Corozal Rural Branch) received 140 votes, and Troy Coleman (President of the Stann Creek Branch) received 147 votes.

Ana Barrera wins San Pedro Leos’ scooter raffle
Lucky island resident Ana Magarita Barrera, ‘La Mami’, won herself a brand new blue scooter at the Lions Den on Saturday, April 15th. The raffle was drawn at the San Pedro Lions Queen Coronation/Dance, and on Friday, April 21st, several Lion and Leo members joined in handing the scooter to Barrera at the Lions Den. Barrera was ecstatic to receive her new mode of transportation. She told The San Pedro Sun that she was in complete disbelief when she received the call, notifying her that she had won. “I was shocked…I have much experience coordinating raffles, and purchasing raffle tickets. I have been lucky in the past to win, but this is my biggest prize yet,” said Barrera. Even more fun to her is that she only bought one ticket, for a mere $10. Considered one of the San Pedro Leos’ biggest fundraisers, the raffle was held to raise funds for travel expenses to the International Lions Convention in Chicago, Illinois, USA. As the first ever Lions Club originated in Chicago, the convention will take place on June 27th to July 4th, where Lions and Leos from across the world will join together to celebrate the Lions 100th year Anniversary.

Ambergris Today

Goodbye To Ana Maria Osorio
Ana Maria Osorio passed on this Saturday, April 22, and was laid to rest on Sunday. She died on Earth Day and was celebrated and buried during the Feast of Devine Mercy. Ana was born in Progreso Yucatan, and lived as a child in Majahual. One of Chichi Ana’s biggest qualities wad establishing friendships in any neighborhood where she lived. Ambergris Today and the Nuñez/Zapata/Eiley families extend sincere appreciation to all who visited, brought gifts and wreaths, attended the funeral mass, and expressed warm words of consolation: Dr. Irvin and Alma Gabourel at Belize Gastroenterology and Endoscopy Center, Dr. Carillo, Dr. Ellington, Physiotherapist Smith, Nurses, Gaby Nuñez and his team, Graniel's Construction, Father Reynaldo, Abel Guerrero Lay Minister, Eduardo Brown, Barbara Brown, Elida Brown Rodriguez, Cora Guillen, Julie Nuñez, Cindy, and Letty Eiley.

Anna Barerra Wins Scooter From The Leo's Club Raffle
On Friday, April 21, 2017 The San Pedro Leo’s Club handed over a Scooter to lucky winner Anna Barerra. The raffle was drawn on Saturday, April 15 during the Easter dance. Proceeds of this raffle will be used into helping keep the community clean and helping those in need. The Leo Club wishes to thank all those who bought a ticket or helped in any way.

Misc Belizean Sources

mzz

Trip to Lamanai
Great day out yesterday on a trip to Laminai up the New River with Tanisha Tours. Started off with a stunning sunrise and finished with a sundowner. Filled with Boat Billed Herons, Spider Monkey, Kingfisher, Howler Monkey, Toucans, Woodpeckers, Mayan Ruins & more.

Expo-Salud 2017
I want to thank the Village Council staff, clinic staff, Eli Gutierrez , all San Pedro Volunteers, Adventurers, Pathfinders, Master Guides and all volunteers from the Seventh-day Adventist Church of Caye Caulker who made it possible Attend to about 200 people and help them in health issues during the Expo-Salud 2017 free of charge that took place on basketball court last Saturday, April 22nd. 18 photos.

Divine Mercy Mass
The San Pedro Roman Catholic Church celebrated the Divine Mercy Mass at a special congregation at Central Park in Downtown San Pedro, yesterday Sunday, April 23.

Comments on the CARICOM Regional Standards for White and Brown Sugar
Deadline for submission of comments on the CARICOM Regional Standards for White and Brown Sugar is this Friday, 28th April 2017. Don't miss the opportunity to participate in the standards development process!!

World Immunization Week
This week is being observed as World Immunization Week. The Ministry of Health will carry out extra vaccination campaigns including health sessions in schools, industrial and construction sites, and a few tourist destination centers. A mini health fair will be held on Wednesday, April 26 at the Dangriga Polyclinic. For more information, please contact the Maternal and Child Health Unit at the Ministry of Health. mch@health.gov.bz.

Police Department statement
Recently the Belize Police Department has been wracked by a series of improprieties, committed by some of its members, which are of major national concern. The Ministry of Home Affairs, as part of it Zero Tolerance Policy for police improprieties, hereby assures the public that every report or knowledge of wrongful act committed by its members will be dealt with expeditiously and with utmost transparency. The Police Professional Standards Branch’s capacity is being enhanced and will now see its personnel take a pro-active role in ensuring that the Belize Police Department’s professionalism is second to none. The public is encouraged to report any activity which they may perceive as improper to the Professional Standards Branch. Every report will be dealt with professionally and expeditiously. The Ministry takes this opportunity to applaud the Police Commissioner for taking decisive action against those who reportedly were engaged in corrupted practices, unwarrantable use of force and other criminal acts that brought the integrity and professionalism of the department into question during those unfortunate and regrettable occurrences.

CYBER SECURITY SYMPOSIUM
Belize's top minds in the field of information technology and other stakeholders are meeting for a full week at the Belize Biltmore Plaza to address issues of cyber security and awareness. The public sector, business, law enforcement, judiciary and others will work towards the drafting of Belize's first National Cyber Security Framework and Action Plan. Attorney General Michael Peyrefitte said that it must include a way to thread between issues of privacy and protecting victims while punishing offenders. Meanwhile, former Government CO Michael Singh, who now is Chief Technology Officer in the office of the Prime Minister, committed to expanding and simplifying digital services by Government.

"Book Week" in Belize
This week is being celebrated as "Book Week" in Belize. We'll feature books written by Belizeans. Have you read our first feature? BEKA LAMB "Beka Lamb" (1982) is the first novel written by Mrs. Zelma "Zee" Edgell. It took ten years to write the novel from idea to publication and was the first book to be published in newly-independent Belize. The novel won Britain's Fawcett Society Book Prize which is awarded annually to a work of fiction which contributes to an understanding of women's positions in society. The book received much international acclaim, making Zee Edgell the first Belizean author to achieve such success.

Hon. Edmond Castro and NEMO Respond to Victims of Freak Storm in Biscayne Village
Over the weekend, Minister of National Emergency Management and Area Representative for Belize Rural North Hon. Edmond Castro led a NEMO response team in the village of Biscayne where a freak storm, which struck late Saturday afternoon April 22, 2017 around 5:00 PM, affected nine (9) families. Three (3) homes were destroyed beyond repair and six (6) others were significantly damaged, most of the families losing their roofs and much of their belongings. Fortunately, there was no loss of life or significant human injury resulting from the storm. Hon. Castro and the NEMO team delivered immediate relief supplies to the families, including mattresses and food stuff. Meanwhile, the affected homes are being assessed to determine what kind of assistance is needed for rebuilding and repairs. Also, as part of the immediate emergency response, damaged electrical lines were restored by the Belize Electricity Limited (BEL).

Mobile mortuary refrigerator and freezer system for San Pedro
On April 19th, 2017, the San Pedro Town Council joined a group of stakeholders in a meeting that was organized and coordinated by the National Forensic Unit of the Police Department in collaboration with the US Embassy in Belize. The purpose of the meeting, which was spearheaded by Chief Pathologist in Belize - Dr. Mario Estradabran, was to explore the idea of tapping into the United States INL/CARSI Project funds and to look at the possibility of acquiring a Mobile mortuary refrigerator and freezer system. The acquisition of such system would be a temporary solution to the inhumane conditions in which dead bodies are stored on the island, before it can be transported for post-mortem or burial. In cases of violent deaths, in many instances, bodies that are exposed to the natural elements may sometime result in the loss of evidence. In such cases, it makes it difficult for the Forensic Unit of the Police Department to gather proper evidence to bring closure to some of the murder cases in Belize.

Are you ready for Fiesta Rama held in Orange Walk?
2017 Fiesta Rama bikers will showcase great rides in Orange walk town Belize..From food, to eating competition, to food eating contest, to rides, to baseball, and more the event keeps getting bigger and better. The tradition has lasted over the years and many Belizeans has enjoyed the event. This years event will take place at the peoples Stadium in Orange Walk, Belize. This years event everyone will gather on for the opening night which usually commence at 7pm. Throughout the weekend games like volleyball, Baseball, football was is an all day thing on Saturday and Sunday.

No more Guatemala and Dispute over Belize; Belize is for Belize
For centuries the question of the Belize/Guatemala territorial issue has hampered and stunted economic growth and development in Belize and retarded commercial relations between these two countries. A concerted effort has been made in the past to improve and normalize relations through diplomatic channels and negotiations. Initially, these efforts were solely the work of the United Kingdom, the colonial power excercing defacto sovereignty over the territory of Belize which Guatemala claimed. Later on though, in the period after Belizean self-government, and especially since the early and mid-1970's, home-grown Belizean leaders played a critical role in shaping and promoting their country's interests in the controversy. The transition from colonial to local leadership, and the change in objectives from Imperial satisfaction to the pursuit of national sovereignty, was an important one. We shall therefore see, when we come to look at the strategy used by the Belizean leaders in their quest for self-determination, how certain developments in international relations favourable to developing countries enabled the Belizeans to advance their cause.

Illicit refilling of Crystal Water 5-Gallon bottles
Bowen & Bowen customers and consumers are advised not to purchase Crystal Water 5-Gallon bottles without the Crystal branded tamper evident shrink sleeve intact. There have been several reports of illicit refilling of Crystal Water 5-Gallon bottles with inferior quality water. Please be aware and vigilant to not be fooled by imitation water. To safeguard our customers and consumers and help ensure you are getting the Crystal Water you want and paid for, Bowen & Bowen Crystal Water 5-Gallon bottles have several safety measures as part of our standard packaging. Please be sure to check for these before purchasing and opening a Crystal Water 5-gallon bottle. 1. TAMPER EVIDENT SHRINK SLEEVES that cover all 5 Gallon Caps 2. BLUE CAPS with additional peel away tamper seal label 3. A Crystal PEEL AWAY TAMPER seal label on the top of 5-Gallon Caps 4. Bottles are embossed with Bowen & Bowen Crystal Logo 5. Crystal Water Labels are attached to the side panel of each bottle Bowen & Bowen is pursuing the matter of illicit refilling of Crystal Water 5-Gallon Bottles expeditiously for consumer’s safety. If anyone has information regarding someone illicitly refilling Crystal Water 5-Gallon bottles, please call us at our Toll Free Customer Service number and let us know : 0 (800) BOWENBZ, 0 (800) 269-3629

Introducing our first DJ and Official Sound System for this year's Caye Caulker Lobster Fest
Caye Caulker's #1 DJ Julian Blue Wave Pacheco and Blue Wave Sounds - Caye Caulker

Hummingbird Furnishings Sale
Its our 1st Annual Warehouse Clearance Sale with discounts up to 50% and as if that is not enough we will also be raffling one of our outdoor Dining sets on Sunday. Sale starts on the 29th and ends on the 30th April. Visit our Belmopan office or our booth at the Agriculture And Trade Show SP#177 for a chance to win.

The karst team monitored the third set of caves in the Chiquibul Caverns
No good news – this region nearby the western border is now actively being used for milpa farms and looting.

MAGISTRATE NORMAN RODRIGUEZ TO BE CHARGED WITH RAPE!!! FOR SECOND TIME!
It is being reported on social media and news outlets that the Director of Public Prosecution is reviewing a file to bring rape charges against Magistrate Norman Rodriguez. A leaked police report is circulating on social media in which the alleged victim says Norman Rodriguez took her to his house in Dangriga, where he just assigned as Magistrate, took her clothes off and raped her. Sources are telling ABP the alleged rape took place on April 11th, 2017. It is not clear why the DPP is only now considering rape charges. This is not the first time that Rodriguez has been accused of rape. While a teacher at Excelsior high school, Rodriguez was accused of Statutory Rape of a 14 year old girl in June, 2004. After the young girl testified before a jury that she had sex with Rodriguez at his house on plues street in Belize city, Rodriguez was still acquitted at trial.

Channel 7

A Twister Tore Through Tiny Biscayne
This weekend Biscayne residents were left shaken after an intense thunderstorm wreaked havoc on their homes. It hit on Saturday evening around 4:30. Most residents were inside their houses and the weather seemed just fine until, all of a sudden, darkness blanketed the sky and there was a downpour. But that wasn't the end of it; residents say a miniature tornado whipped through and caused a whole lot of damages. Now we have reported on these types of storms before, one of the big ones hit Crooked Tree in August 2011. While Meteorologists say these storms are nothing out of the ordinary, it was very much so for Biscayne residents. Courtney Weatherburne has more details on the aftermath. Ralph Gentle, Biscayne Resident: "We just figured it was just normal, the wind just a bit blowing hard we didn't know it was to all that extent until we come outside and saw it , the trees ,we see the tress, the fruits them on the ground and everything so we realize that something strange went on."

Hon. Faber Says He Didn't Meddle in BNTU Election
Last week, we told you all about the election of a new national BNTU president, and the political intrigues surrounding that election. It's an election that almost didn't happen because the union leadership was so concerned about the possibility that the UDP was backing one of the candidates. Supposedly the ruling party favored Mario Mesh - who ended up coming in last, with 140 votes, not even half of what the winner Elena Smith got. So, if anyone was backing him it didn't help. But Education Minister Patrick Faber says he certainly wasn't involved; in fact, he congratulated the new President Elena Smith on his Facebook page on Friday. But, today when we met Faber at a Cyber Security Forum, we asked if that congratulatory post is just a front:..

Hon. Faber Responds To Union Busting Allegations
And so, while Faber disavows any knowledge of meddling in the teachers union election, he knows all about that million dollar honorarium that his ministry is paying to those teachers who didn't strike. Except it's not a million dollars - it's a little more than half that. Today, Faber told us he is mightily peeved that everyone - from the unions, to the chamber to the NGO's to the media - jumped all over him and his government for the payout - and no one even bothered to get all the facts:... Hon. Patrick Faber - Minister of Education: "Nobody, including the media, has ever written to us and said: can you give us the details of how things are going to be done here and what is it that is specifically being done? You would think that those things would be done before you put out a press release as an entire entity to say that we condemn; That is my issue with them. So I'm very disappointed at that. So that all those who have gone half-cocked saying: oh, it's a million dollars - are really…they miss read or they took it too far.

Chopping Murder Down South
For the second weekend in a row - there are no Belize City shootings or gang related murders to report tonight; in fact, we have not reported on a shooting in the city for two whole weeks - which is nothing short of remarkable. We hope the peace continues. But there is still a murder to report tonight - this one happened down south in Trio village - which is in the Toledo district. On Saturday morning just before 11:00 police found 22 year-old Belizean Santiago Garcia suffering from chop wounds to the back of the head, the right cheek and the right wrist. The cops tried to rush him to the Independence Poly Clinic, but he died before he could make it there.

Post Mortem Suggests Baltazar Killed By Blunt Force To Neck
It appears that a jaguar - or some wild animal may have caused the death of Progreso resident Baltzar Lino. As we told you on Friday, the 44 year old went hunting, but didn't return. When his family went to look for him, they found his body face down in a well - in an area between Caledonia and Progresso. His family notes that he had what looked like a claw mark streaked across the back of his neck, and a post mortem has confirmed that injury as being the cause of death. A picture from the area also shows the imprint of a jaguar paw near the well. That area is known to have an active jaguar population, but experts say that cases of wild jaguars attacking humans are rare.

Real Jail for Fake Cops
The alleged fake cops who were caught in Public's Supermarket on the northern Highway went to court today. Police saw the pair standing at the entrance of the supermarket in uniform like they were on duty. They were arrested on spot. That was Wednesday afternoon, and, today, five days later, they went to court for arraignment. 22 year old Dorian Blair and 39 year old Barrington Slusher, were charged with making a false pretense of an officer when they appeared today before Chief Magistrate, Anne Marie Smith. Blair had an attorney, Oscar Selgado, who conceded to the court that Blair was on Supreme Court bail and by being charged for an offence whilst on bail he had violated one of the conditions of the bail.

Police Pick Up Weed In City
On last Friday's Newscast, we told you how the police found a bucket of weed in Ladyville. Well, over the weekend the cops found over 2 kilos more of marijuana in 3 separate operations in Belize City. They found 1.706 kilos or 3.88 pounds of marijuana on Friday evening on Iguana Street.

A Pair of Home-made Guns Appear
Today a Belize City resident appeared in the Magistrate's Court for the possession of a homemade firearm. Thirty year old Fenton Reyes was charged for keeping a prohibited firearm, keeping ammunition without a gun license, and for the possession of a little more than 1/10 of an ounce of cannabis. According to reports, a police mobile patrol stopped and searched Reyes on Krooman Road yesterday where they found a homemade .22 pen gun with one round of ammunition and the cannabis. Reyes pled not guilty in court, but no bail was offered because of the firearm and ammo charges. He was remanded to prison until June 16.

Taking Cyber Security Seriously
The Belize National Cyber Security Symposium - just hearing the name it sounds like a lot of high tech talk for computer types. But, this symposium is actually about regular folks, because, with so many Belizeans now accessing the internet through mobile devices, the issue of internet safety inevitably arises. And we don't just mean safety of your passwords and accounts - we mean, how safe is your child while accessing the internet, and what measures can be taken if you're the victim of revenge porn, or cyber - bullying? All that factors into this forum which is a first for the Caribbean:... Bevil Wooding, Executive Director, CaribNOG: "This is absolutely the first time such an ambitious undertaking has taken place in the wider Caribbean region." Jules Vasquez reporting: And while there are often meetings about cyber security - this is the first to have such senior representation from a cross section of lawmakers and decision makers:

Come Out To Talk Cyber Security!
But one of the real priorities is to engage the public - specifically regular folks. The symposium runs for four days and tomorrow, there's a public forum. Wooding says he wants you to come out:... Bevil Wooding, Executive Director, CaribNOG: "So today you are seeing suits and ties and people from different dimensions of society, but once we get into tomorrow's agenda where we break into specific forum, there is opportunity for the so called man on the street, the common member of society to come and sitdown and asks the questions that cannot be asked in any other forum. What does this mean for me? Not in technical terms, in practical terms. I have a child who I am concerned about in terms of how they use the internet. I have devices that I have brought into my home and I want to know how to secure it. I have these concerns and I want to understand how I can address it. Those are all parts of the structure of this week."

UNIBAM Broadening The Discussion
Today, at the Princess Ramada Hotel, UNIBAM, the gay rights activist group, and the National AIDS Commission completed the first day of a 2-day conference on Sexual Orientation and Gender Identity. Since last year, August, when UNIBAM's Caleb Orozco got that landmark victory at the Supreme Court, the controversy over the lifestyle of the local gay community hasn't been making much news. But, UNIBAM insists that injustices against gay people continue every day. This morning, the executive director of UNIBAM told us that the social exclusion and unfair treatment that gay persons in Belize experience is not only reserved for them. He pointed out that systemic marginalization can affect other groups such as the poor. Here's how he explained it:

Police Say Bainton Bashed Wall
Tonight, Sonia Bainton, a Ladyville resident, is out on bail after police say that she kicked down a piece of concrete wall that makes up the cell block are of the Ladyville Police Station. On Saturday, She and Elward McKay were in detention at the station on a handling stolen goods case. That's when, according to police she stamped a part of the concrete structure that makes up the cell block, breaking a portion of it. She was charged with damaged to property, and today before Senior Magistrate Sharon Frazer, she pleaded guilty. She was fined $300, and ordered to pay compensation of $500 to the Government of Belize.

Ministry Fesses Up To Police Corruption
Just last week, we told you about Woman Constable Ann Marie Anthony who was charged with theft and disciplinary charges for allegedly stealing $200 dollars from a grocery store. She is the sixth officer charged this month for corrupt or improper behaviour on the job, incidents which were all caught on camera. The first 2 were Constable Norman Coye and Darnell Madrill from San Pedro for that incident of lawlessness on San Pedro Town. The next two were Constable Jose Ascurio and Voluntary Special Constable Alfredo Ismael Gongora, who were caught on camera in a contraband move at Botes, Mexico. And then there were those two runaway cops, Police Constable Elston Rojas and the Corporal Abner Marroquin, allegedly smuggling a "bulto" in a patrol truck.

A Teachable Moment For Climate Change
Today members of the Belize City Council, the UNDP and other stakeholders held the soft launch of a new community awareness campaign for climate change. The presentation was to seize upon a very visible problem affecting the community, and use that to illustrate the perils of climate change. We spoke to City Councilor Phillip Willoughby and the coordinator at the National Climate Change Office, Anne Gordon, for more... The community awareness campaign will officially be launched the Wednesday with plans to spread the message to communities throughout the country.

Atlantic Art
Today Atlantic Bank and the Institute for Sustainability of Community and Environment joined together to donate several pieces of art to the Central Christian Primary School in Belize City. The donation was made to celebrate Earth Day, and fitting with the theme, each piece of art was made from old, reused tires. We spoke to Atlantic Bank Representative Denmar Villar, and the mastermind behind the recycled art, Alvaro Dominguez, for more details... Earth Day was officially celebrated on Saturday under the theme, "Reduce, Reuse, Recycle".

The BNE Beacon
"Beacon" That's the name of a new youth magazine that was launched today at SJCJC. The scholars from BNE's Energy 4 Life program produced the publication. Now, the name Beacon suits the magazine perfectly because the stories that are featured are full of hope and inspiration. One of the Director s of BNE's Energy 4 Life program told us more about the Magazine and also about the scholarship program. Manuela Lue, Director, BNE Energy 4 Life Program: "The youth magazine is being done by the scholars of the BNE's energy 4 life program and these scholars formed a youth group and it is called the energy 4 life youth group." "The magazine is composed of several things but one of the major things are inspirational stories of youth all over the country of Belize and these stories compromise of youth who have overcome challenges and obstacles to achieve goals so a lot of them would be disadvantaged youth or at risk youth but it is more important to emphasize that they have overcome tremendous obstacles to achieve goals, a lot of them have won international awards some of them have won scholarships, some of them have started their own business, some of them have finished their education so it is just an array of stories in the magazine."

Princess Cruises and Belize
In December of last year, Princess Cruises, a cruise ship brand owned by Carnival, pled guilty to charges of illegally disposing of oil-contaminated waste and falsifying official logs to cover up the discharges. Princess was charged in a US Court and was fined a record $40 million penalty, the largest fine ever for deliberate ship pollution. According to reports, the illegal activity was brought to light by a newly hired British engineer on the "Princess Caribbean" in 2013. The engineer told authorities that a "magic pipe" was used to discharge about 4227 gallons of waste about 23 miles off the coast of England, well within the country's exclusive economic zone. The engineer alleged that when the waste was being released, the other engineers would run clean water through the ship's sensors and distort the digital records.

Channel 5

Police Investigate Tricky Rape Claim Against Dangriga Magistrate
There is a most disturbing allegation being made tonight against an officer of the court, one in which a sitting magistrate is being accused of having committed a sexual offence [...]

Patrick Faber Says Honorarium Will Come from Last Year’s Budget
The million-dollar bonus to be provided by the Ministry of Education to non-striking teachers during the eleven-day strike last October and the subsequent attempt to make up days lost in [...]

Education Minister Makes Case for Honorarium, Hits Back at Critics
Even though the money was paid after the start of the financial year, the minister claims it was taken from the previous financial year’s Budget.  But it is known from [...]

Why Patrick Faber Does Not Care What You Think About the Honorarium
The minister acknowledged that he was in something of a catch-twenty-two situation, facing the wrath of unionized teachers who feel he has disrespected them, and the expectation of teachers who [...]

Minister Congratulates Elena Smith, Scorns Luke Palacio
Senator Elena Smith will assume office in July as president of the Belize National Teacher’s Union, after a hard-fought victory in the national convention in San Roman, Corozal last week. [...]

Deputy P.M. Insists He Stayed Out of Alleged Interference in B.N.T.U. Convention
We know for sure that the minister didn’t drop in at Escuela Mexico in San Roman. But his driver was seen around the area along with at least one other [...]

Brawl Escalates to Murder in Trio
Turning to crime…a deadly machete mayhem in Trio Village over the weekend has resulted in two men being hospitalized, while the mutilated body of another remains at the morgue.  On [...]

Sudden Storm Lashes Biscayne, Rips Through Homes
A freak thunderstorm swept through parts of Biscayne, Belize District over the weekend. Though not unusual, it left in its passage considerable damages to property, but fortunately there were no [...]

Protecting Belize’s Cyber Security Infrastructure
The first of its kind National Cyber Security Symposium opened today at the Biltmore Plaza Hotel. The Public Utilities Commission is teaming up with other stakeholders to explore international trends [...]

Police Mum on Bullying Charge Against Admiral John Borland
News Five has received reliable information that an investigation is currently ongoing by the police department into an allegation made by a coastguardsman against his commander, Rear Admiral John Borland. [...]

Professional Standards Branch Steps Up in Wake of Dirty Cops’ Exposure
Recently, there’s been a spate of incidents in which police officers have been caught on video with contraband goods and only last week a cop was charged with theft.  The [...]

Fake Cops Taken to Real Jail
After five nights in lockdown at the Queen Street Police Station, two alleged fake cops were finally arraigned. The duo was caught in front of Public’s Supermarket dressed in the [...]

Marking Earth Day at Central Christian Primary
World Earth Day is a global celebration to highlight and show appreciation for our natural environment. One primary school in Belize City used the occasion to show how trash can [...]

What You Need to Know About Climate Change
The National Climate Change Office was on the south side of the city today for the soft launch of a climate change awareness campaign.  Belize participated in the Japan-Caribbean Climate [...]

UNIBAM Addresses Impact of Laws on “Marginalized Groups”
The United Belize Advocacy Movement kicked off a two-day session in Belize City to discuss legislation and how it affects marginalized groups. The focus of the conference is two-fold; to [...]

Caleb Orozco Says Awareness Will Lead to Change
And while this is at the discussion stage, how does UNIBAM plan to get all citizens covered under the laws, regardless of orientation or identity? Orozco explains that the process [...]

Investing in Child Care Development
The Ministry of Health is hosting a two-week “Care for Child Development National Trainers Workshop” in Belize City. The focus of the seminar is to enable personnel from the Ministries [...]

CitCo to Talk to Culprit for Backed-Up Yabra Canal
Who is responsible for the silt backed up on the south side? Before the Easter holidays, we told you about the proposed work to be done in the Yabra Canal [...]

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

CTV3

Unfair Distribution Of Land Outrages Villagers Of Concepcion Village
Concepcion Village Chairman, Fidel Chable, is under heavy pressure from Concepcion Village residents who are outraged at what they say is the unfair distribution of land which they have been utilising for years. Residents say that despite maintaining the lots, admittedly as squatters, raising farms with fruit trees and even constructing foundations for homes on them, the Chairman has proceeded to give them away. This caused about sixty residents to gather in the community, and call the attention of the Ministry of Natural Resources. When we arrived in Concepcion Village today, we found the crowd of residents being closely monitored by two Police officials that came in two vehicles. We spoke to elected Village Councillor Rodolfo Lainez to learn more about the situation.

MOE Congratulates New President Of BNTU
Last week Thursday April 20th, Trade Union Senator Elena Smith was elected by majority votes to serve as the next National President of the Belize National Teacher’s Union. The election was not without controversy as reports of political infiltration by UDP agents ran abound, forcing the Council of Management to call an impromptu meeting which lasted two hours. With the open deliberations, the convention was delayed by nearly four hours and while some were considering calling it off, the members voted to proceed. Following the convention, a number of groups offered their congratulations to the Senator for the victory. Surprisingly among them is Minister of Education, Hon. Patrick Faber, whose very own colleagues were seen on the convention floor, allegedly campaigning against Smith. But in politics, stranger things have occurred, and when Faber was asked whether to post was just a fake pat in the back, he claimed that not only does he and the Senator go way back, but also that he is glad the Luke Palacio era is coming to an end.

Belize Barrier Reef Continues To Be An Endangered Site
Belize boasts the second largest coral reef system in the world which measures a total of 300 kilometers in length and can best be described as a patchwork of pinnacle reefs, fringing reefs and barrier reefs with hundreds of Cayes just above the surface along with mangrove and sand islands. This reef system has been highlighted internationally for its beauty and as a top snorkel destination for snorkelers all around the globe. Local environmental agencies have however been speaking out on the many dangers being posed to Belize’s Barrier Reef such as unsustainable fishing, deteriorating water quality and development.

Zero Tolerance Policy For Police Improprieties
Over the past few weeks, the Belize Police Department has been under heavy Public scrutiny after various members of the Department have been sanctioned for various levels of wrong doings. Viewers may recall that the first public embarrassment came from a video which exposed a fiasco in which San Pedro police officers are seen openly firing during a scuffle outside of a popular nightclub and resulting in a woman being badly beaten by the cops. The second incident, involved a video featuring a pair of officers transporting contraband goods across the Belize/Mexico border near Botes in Orange Walk. The pair, identified as Constable Jorge Ascurio and Alfredo Gongora, have since been charged. Another pair of officers, P.C. Elston Rojas and Police Corporal Abner Marroquin, were also charged for illegally contrabanding a number of items after a vehicle chase by Customs officers near the northern border.

LOVE FM

Education Minister Says He Was Sincere in Congratulating BNTU’s President-Elect
Last Friday the Belize National teachers Union elected its new executive. Leading the union now is Senator Elena Smith. Following the election, Minister of Education Patrick Faber sent out congratulatory remarks on social media to Smith. Faber today said his sentiments are genuine. PATRICK FABER ““It is no secret that the leadership of the BNTU […]

Biscayne Villagers Experience Weekend Freak Storm
A freak storm passed through Biscayne Village on Saturday night damaging nine houses. Minister of National Emergency Management Organization, NEMO, and Area Representative for Belize Rural North, Edmund Castro, visited the affected families and, through NEMO, provided assistance to the affected families. According to Castro, the NEMO team delivered immediate relief supplies to the families, […]

Was Court Magistrate Accused of Rape?
A court magistrate may find himself on the opposite end of a courtroom shortly if the authorities decide to act on an allegation of rape made against him. While we have confirmed with the police that a complaint of rape has been made to authorities in southern Belize, we have been unable to get any […]

Police Assures Public that Corrupt Officers Will Be Dealt With Accordingly
In the wake of several criminal reports allegedly committed by police officers, the Ministry of Home affairs issued a release today stating that it has zero tolerance for such behavior. The Professional Standards Bureau is urging the public to report any instance of wrongful acts by the department’s personnel will be dealt with expeditiously and […]

Admiral John Borland, Accused of Abusing Staff Member
Last week a member from the Belize Coast guard filed a police report against Admiral John Borland, the head of the Coast Guard accusing him of verbal abuse and threat to life. Now while Love News has received details of the incident, we are unable to release it as the complainant is still discussing the […]

CEO Lovell Says Admiral Borland Will Be Given Due Process
While there is no official comment on the details of the case, today Col. George Lovell, CEO in the Ministry of Home Affairs said he is aware of the mater but would not speak further on it. GEORGE LOVELL “What I would want to echo is the fact that the Ministry is serious about this […]

CEO Says Police Shuffle = Career Enhancements
The talks surrounding the police reshuffle has continued as many speculations still surround the decision to move some of the top ranking officers in the department. Today in an interview with the CEO in the Ministry of Home Affairs, Retired Colonel George Lovell, he clarified the logic behind the decision. GEORGE LOVELL “Majority of the […]

Lino’s Death Continues to Be Investigated
The police are investigating the death of 45 year old Baltazar Lino and so is the Forest Department. That’s because Lino might have been attacked by a Jaguar. Lino left his home in Progresso Village on Easter Sunday to his farm some miles away from the village. He turned up dead inside a shallow well. […]

Central Bank Liquidates Four Credit Unions
Four credit unions are in the process of being liquidated by the Central Bank of Belize. The notice came out on April 3 from the Registrar of Credit Unions, Ambassador Joy Grant. The Police Credit Union Limited is being affected after it failed to meet membership threshold as required by the Credit Unions Act. The […]

Symposium Begins on Cyber Security Issues
Today the first ever National Cyber Security Symposium began in Belize City. The Symposium is being hosted by the Belize Public Utilities Commission in response to a growing incidence of cyber-threats within the country. The five-day meeting sees the participation of a broad range of local, regional and international delegates, including heads of technology organizations, […]

Breaking Belize NewsPJ

World’s first malaria vaccine may hold promise in battle against malaria
After over 30 years of studies, the world’s first malaria vaccine is to be tested in Africa and may prove to be another weapon to fight this dreaded disease. The World Health Organization (WHO) has hailed the vaccine, which is being pilot tested in […]

Police mum on rape case involving Magistrate
A Magistrate working down South is accused of raping a woman who visited his home. The incident allegedly occurred sometime before 10 a.m. on April 11. The woman reportedly told police on Sunday, April 23 that the Magistrate invited her to his home where […]

Croc on the loose in Faber’s Road area
Residents in the Faber’s Road area of Belize City are urged to exercise extreme caution as a crocodile has been spotted on the loose in the community. The croc, almost 4 feet long, was seen not too far from the lagoon. Concerned residents contacted […]

Chronicle of Jewelizean authoritarianism foretold
Are there lessons for Belize in an article outlining how Syria’s President Bashar al-Assad turned from a very shy eye doctor to a vicious and murderous dictator. It may be wise for Belizeans to read and digest this article which was written by Max […]

Police find homemade shotgun in Santa Elena
A predawn operation was conducted this morning in Santa Elena, Cayo District jointly by the Quick Response Team and the Special Branch of the San Ignacio Police Detachment . Authorities discovered a double barrel homemade shotgun in an area known as the hot point […]

Two Guatemalans busted with unlicensed firearm and ammunition in Corozal
Two Guatemalan nationals will spend the next few days in prison after they were busted with a gun and live rounds in Corozal District. According to police reports, at 4:00 a.m., on Sunday, police conducted a search in the Hidden Hills Layout area which […]

Belize City Police finds 12 bullets in abandoned house
Police have removed 12 bullets from the north side of Belize City which was believed to have belonged to a gang group. According to police reports, shortly after midday on Sunday, a search was conducted at an abandoned lot on Cran Street which led […]

Three Cayo men busted with Ganja
Three Cayo men: Michael Peter Mendoza, 47, Luis Alberto Flores, 32, and Felipe Alberto Guzman Jr., 22, are in trouble with authorities after they were busted transporting ganja in San Ignacio. According to police reports, shortly before 11 a.m. yesterday, police saw the men […]

CitCo and UNDP talk climate change with south side community
The Belize City Council (CitCo), teamed up with the United Nations Development Project (UNDP) today for an outreach activity geared towards educating Belizeans about climate change. The organizations held a soft launch for the public awareness campaign, done in collaboration with the Japan/Caribbean Climate […]

Lake I man jailed for pen gun, bullet, and ganja
A man from the Lake Independence area of Belize City has found himself on the wrong side of the law after he was busted with a pen gun, a bullet, and marijuana. According to police reports, at around 5 p.m. on Sunday, police were […]

Police Ministry assures that “rogue cops” will be dealt with
The Belize Police Department in recent weeks has taken one black eye after the other, from contraband cops caught on cam, to rogue officers terrorizing residents on San Pedro and a police woman charged for stealing from a Chinese grocer. It’s been a tough […]

Cayo DJs form new DJ Association
Local DJ’s from San Ignacio and Santa Elena have joined hands and formed the Cayo DJ Association. The group is newly formed and presently comprises of 10 DJ’s. The association was formed on April 2, 2017. The aim of the association is to work […]

Olympic gold medalist Aly Raisman insulted in Belize
A Saturday morning breakfast between Olympic Gold medalist Aly Raisman and her father at an unnamed establishment in Belize was so awkward it has made headlines on international media outlets including ESPN. Raisman, a teammate of fellow Olympic Gold medalist Simone Biles, is on […]

Ex-treasure hunter ordered to turn over gold hidden in Belize
In February, BBN reported on Tommy Thompson, a deep sea treasure hunter who, in 1988 found a gold rush era ship that sunk in 1857. The S.S. Central America had sank off South Carolina in a hurricane.Thompson had spent years studying the ship’s voyage and […]

What Belizeans need to know about Joel Nagel
Disgraced Ambassador Joel Nagel, had only been featured on a few newscasts in recent years, but became a controversial name when he was removed from his post at the Belizean Embassy in Vienna, Austria. The nation heard about his historic removal from his post, but many Belizeans […]

Blogs

Chocolate Festival of Belize; a sweet celebration!
For the last ten years, chocolate has been celebrated in Punta Gorda Town. Traditionally held over the Commonwealth Holiday weekend (mid-May), what began as the Toledo Cacao Festival later evolved into the Chocolate Festival of Belize, and does anyone need to ask why all the fuss? Steeped within the Maya culture, and a revered commodity that only the privileged hierarchy of the civilization were once allowed to indulge in, chocolate is now a sweet treat that thankfully all of us can enjoy and celebrate…and celebrate we do! This delicious festival grows larger each year and attracts hundreds of visitors from around Belize as well as overseas. This year, the event kicks off with guests enjoying a night of socializing while sampling a wide variety of chocolate delicacies along with gourmet wines at Garbutt’s Marina on Friday, May 19th. Lively music sets the stage for a great night of indulging and dancing off some of those chocolate calories!

Planning Solo Travel in Belize
I am in Belize now and so excited to do this bucket list item and take a great solo adventure I’ve been dreaming of for some time. In writing this piece, I wanted to do what I can to help other women have this amazing adventure; Smile… Originally, I had not thought of Belize to be a place a single female solo adventurer with a tendency towards the safe side would travel. I have traveled to All-Inclusive or Hawaii on my own mainly. Then I heard my cousin who travels a fair amount, went to San Pedro, Belize and loved it. So I put it in the back of my thoughts of “one day”. However, “one day” was a concept that many say but rarely follow through on. I didn’t want to be one of those people at this time in my life. I was waiting for the right timing, the right traveling companion, excess funds, etc. to complete some bucket list items. I am now a young empty nester on my own and ready to take this next stage of my life with more gusto and enjoy each moment. I’ve wanted to travel somewhere that I could really enjoy the Mayan ruins and climb a pyramid as well as snorkel, enjoy the beauty of the Caribbean, and enjoy the local people. I didn’t want as many restrictions now. So I started to research. The only way I enjoy traveling as a single woman is to do lots of research. It also adds so much more excitement and anticipation.

Planning a trip? Here’s why you should be headed to Belize
This morning I came across an article from the India Times – Planning a trip? Here’s why you should be headed to Belize. Aside from looking for information about Belize and what to do based on the title, it is always important to consider the source. Everything you read is not always fu chroo (true). In this case, the article stated that Kriol is the native language, which is partially true, but the fact that English is the official language is a reason why many people travel here. The author got it correct on the low-end price for rooms, (which is listed in Indian Rupee) but was a little off on the private villas. But that’s aarite (alright), being that it’s written by someone so far away that has likely never been here, I knew immediately to take it with a grain of salt.

Making a Move from Belize to Roatan
Sometimes in life, you hit the jackpot when a friend asks you to help move. I know a few of you are raising your eyebrows and questioning how moving a friend could be a pay off beyond pizza and beer. In this case, for about fifteen of us who got invited to help our friend Kendall move, it means a two Catamaran convoy, four day sailing trip including a serious ocean crossing. Since decent weather conditions are key to an ocean crossing, we will head to Lighthouse Reef and play for a few days. Very excited for this as I will be tech free and have packed my frisbee’s, floats and twister. When the timing is right, we will set sail for Roatan – with an overnight ocean crossing and arrival at Barefoot Caye Marina mid-afternoon on April 27th. I’m slightly nervous about the crossing and choppiness but preparing accordingly. Hopefully be no worse than a 6 or 7 out of 10.

Butterfly Falls in Belize
Butterfly Falls is located inside the Mountain Pine Ridge Forest Reserve in Belize’s western Cayo District. Although it is inside the public nature reserve, the falls themselves are located on private property operated by the Hidden Valley Inn. Only guests of the Hidden Valley Inn located adjacent to Butterfly Falls can access the waterfall. The nearest landmark in the public section of the Mountain Pine Ridge Forest Reserve is the Gaia Riverlodge Restaurant and Lounge. The popular Rio on Pools waterfall in the public section of the reserve is approximately 3.5 miles from Butterfly Falls. Once at the falls, it’s likely you’ll enter a deeply relaxed state listening to the gentle rumble of the water while marveling at the ethereal dance of white and blue butterflies as they flit through the air. Popular activities including taking a refreshing dip in the pool at the base of the falls, so be sure to pack a swimsuit and towel as well.

Mountain Pine Ridge Forest Reserve – All You Need to Know Before You Go
As the oldest and largest protected forested area in Belize, Mountain Pine Ridge (MPR) covers 300 square miles of area, but visitors are surprised to find a sharp contrast to the tropical landscape; here, pine needles rather than palm fronds, fill the landscape. This pine tree-dominated forest is more than just a vast wooded area: visitors find deep ravines, traverse dramatic granite expanses atop the Maya Mountains and observe meandering rivers, streams, waterfalls and pools amid the sweet fragrance of the evergreens. Make San Ignacio your starting point. You’ll need a 4WD vehicle to traverse the forest since roads can be daunting. Two roads will get you to MPR: Chiquibul Road from Georgeville or Cristo Rey Road from Santa Elena. Choose the first for a smoother ride. The reserve entrance is off the Western Highway. Sound difficult? This is why tourists prefer to let guides do the driving by booking all-inclusive tours that require one only to sit back, relax and enjoy the sensory experiences Mountain Pine Ridge offers.

Actun Tunichil Muknal Cave (ATM Cave) – All You Need to Know Before You Go
Your journey begins in the Cayo District—specifically, the town of San Ignacio. You’ll need a guide to find your way, so check with the concierge at your resort or seek help in town. Once you’ve secured a guide, you’ll be driven to the banks of the Tapir Mountain Reserve, at which point, expect to hike about 45-minutes through jungle and streams to reach the entrance. It’s a tight fit and not for the claustrophobic, but once you reach your goal, the ATM Cave will reward you with sights and ambiance that has no equal. The bumpy rural road that transects a section of the Belize River will be your first step in reaching the cave. National Geographic travel experts–who put this cave atop its “Sacred Places of a Lifetime” list–join other resources in suggesting travelers stretch before hiking into the jungle to begin the aquatic slog into the cave’s depths. You’ll get wet and stay damp during the four to six hours spent in ATM Cave, so bring dry clothing along and forget about wearing sandals.

International Sourcesizz

A tiny island in Belize was just named the best destination in Central America
Ambergris Caye, Belize, has been named the leading destination in Central America by the World Travel Awards for two years running. Belize's largest island, which is also often considered Belize's crown jewel, is easily accessible from the mainland and holds countless opportunities for adventure, from diving at the Great Blue Hole to checking out a place called Shark-Ray Alley. Here's why this Caribbean island beat out other travel hotspots such as San Jose, Costa Rica, and Tulum, Mexico. Ambergris Caye is Belize's largest island, measuring about 25 miles in length. What that means for you is tons of white sandy beaches.

U.S. Olympian meets Interfering Waitress in Belize
She asked about weight gain and if she's on honey moon (with her father). Welcome to Belize Aly. The waitress needed to know because she's used to interfering and gossiping. She had no idea that it's rude to do so.

Simone Biles -- 6 things to know about the 'Dancing with the Stars' celebrity
Simone Biles is currently competing on Dancing with the Stars with her professional partner Sasha Farber. Simone, at only 20-years-old, is one of the most decorated female gymnasts in history. She joined Dancing with the Stars' 24th season because she's always had a love for the show and dancing in general. Simone has been a frontrunner in the ABC reality dancing competition since the beginning, but she faces tough competition this season -- including Fifth Harmony member Normani Kordei and Glee star Heather Morris. The spunky 4'9" athlete is adorable, fun and driven, but what else do we know about her? Below is a list of 6 facts Reality TV World has compiled about Simone Biles:

Videos

  • Belize, Cayo district, 3.5min. This was filmed during my visit to my home land Belize city. It has been 8 years since I've been home and I was very excited.

  • Grace & You - Season Rice & Carib Beer Battered Fish, 27min.

  • Department of Youth Services - Music Production Studio, 40min.

  • Belize Carnival Association - Carnival Season Launch 2017, 16min.

  • The Ultimate Private Island in Belize - Coco Plum Island Resort, 3min. Coco Plum Island Resort will redefine the ultimate all inclusive vacation on your very own Belize private island... Remember, you are only a stranger until you arrive!

  • Brooke Aaron Baker Wedding Belize 2017, 14min. Traveling to Belize for Brooke and Aaron's Wedding

  • Belize 2017-Cégep Saint-Jean-sur-Richelieu, 4min.

  • Therese Rath speaks on -The Rocky Road to Miss Universe Expose, 40min.

  • UNICEF Belize - Care for Childhood Development Initiatives, 28min.

  • Pok Ta Pok Mexican Tournament, min.

  • Wildtracks Update, 3min. The Yucatan black howler monkeys of Pre-release One (Finn, Innie, Vicky, Kenya and Maggie) are being prepared for release back into the wild...so here's a glimpse back at their time at Wildtracks - the last clip in this video is of Maggie - taken this morning - for all those people who have worked with this group. While we are celebrating their success as a troop, and their success in pre-release, today we are also celebrating a new addition to the troop - yes...this morning, Kenya has had her baby! This may place their release plans on hold until the baby is old enough, but the addition of one more globally endangered Yucatan black howler monkey to the World's population is well worth celebrating!

  • Adventure in Belize, 4.5min. Short trip to Belize with a 130 foot dive into the Great Blue Hole

  • Comrade Vuk | On Belize: The Case of the Retired Major, 4min. This is the edited version of my reply to Ret. Maj. Lloyd Jones' letter, which was published in the Friday, 25 July 2014 edition of the "Amandala" (Belize).

  • Belize Maya Culture 2017, 7min.

  • Cave tubing Belize, 3min.

  • Victoria Peak (Belize), 4.5min. The 2nd Highest yet the more famous Peak in Belize, Central America. Located at the heart of Cockscomb Basin Wildlife Sanctuary, it stands at 1120 masl. 3 days and 54Km hike/climb from jump off to Peak and back. Our first International climb! The struggle was real but everything was worth it

  • Blue Hole Belize, 2min. The Blue Hole from on the dive boat. From all the pictures, I thought the rim was out of the water... No. This is the Blue Hole.

  • GoPro 2017 Discovering Mexico Guatemala and Belize, 20min. Our road trip around Yucatan, Guatemala and Belize in February 2017.

    April 24, 2017


    FOR TODAY'S BELIZE WEATHER, CLICK HERE

    Click for our Daily Tropical Weather Report.

    Specials and Events

    Last night's TV news on Channel 7, Channel 5, LOVETV, PGTV, West Vision (Cayo) and CTV 3. Also with the most recent Open Your Eyes, and other specials


    The San Pedro Sun

    Wolfe’s Woofer: Mamey
    The sign at the vegetable stand said, Mamey – $2.00 each. “Is this a fruit?” Sherry asked me. “It’s what is known as a mamey,” I told her. “They’re really good for flavoring ice cream and milk shakes. I like them.” Sherry bought one for $2.00 and that night I had mamey flavored milk shake. A few days later we were back at the vegetable stand where the table was still piled high with mamey. When she paid for the fruit Sherry asked the shop owner , “Do these things sell very well?” “In some places they do,” the owner said, “but in my shop they don’t.”

    Doctor Love: Not Daddy’s Little Angel
    Dear Doctor Love, My six year old daughter has a terrible temper, and my wife doesn’t do anything about it. My little girl screams and throws fits on the floor. She kicks at her mother and even calls my wife stupid and smacks her. My wife says our daughter will outgrow it, but it is getting worse. She is even mean to her playmates. What should I do? /s/Not Daddy’s Little Angel

    Misc Belizean Sources

    mzz

    Cricel Castillo at WbffPro
    Top 10 PRO FITNESS and BEST THEME WEAR! Hey, that's more than winning in my books! You don't have to win the entire show to be a champion sometimes... the PEOPLE's CHAMPION is the best title and I got SOOOOO many good reviews on my entire performance and awarded by so many for BEST BACK SHOT HAHAHA

    Passing of Ms. Anna Maria Osorio
    Mayor Daniel Guerrero, the San Pedro Town Council and Staff would like to express it sincere condolences to the Osorio/Nuñez Family and Friends on the passing of Ms. Anna Maria Osorio. May her soul rest in peace.

    Corozal Rising Stars
    CRS did an awesome job over the weekend as we represented our Jewel in Chetumal. We lost two games and won one for 3 points which made us came in 3rd in our group. The players gathered great experience as they continue to excel as they grow in this great sport we love Football. Tks to all players and the great CRS Committee.

    5K Camp Joy Belize Run
    Representatives of the Mexican Embassy in Belize were present this morning at the 1st 5K Camp Joy Belize Run in Belmopan, dedicated to serve people with special needs. Congratulations to the organisers!

    Percentage of Poverty in Latin America. Alarming

    The Reporter

    Mexico to host 2017 commercial mission
    The Mexican Embassy in Belize is announcing its 2017 Commercial mission, which will be hosted at the Institute of Mexico in Belize City, on April, 27. The event will be open to the public from 8:00 a.m-12:00 p.m., and companies from Cancun and Merida will shoecase a variety of products and services. Representative from ProMexico (the Mexican Trade and Investment agency) will be present to provide feedback about opening a business in the Mexican market.

    Breaking Belize NewsPJ

    Why are politicians avoiding re-registration?
    It has been 20 years since the last time a voter re-registration exercise has been conducted in Belize and since then; many voters have died, some have moved, new voters have been added, an influx of immigrants have settled in the country, Belize’s nationality has been sold illegally through Immigration hustling and the country’s economy has generally ailed because of greedy politicians.

    Cricel Castillo wins best theme wear in Los Angeles
    The World Beauty Fitness and Fashion show was held last night in Los Angeles, California. The event is a Pro and Amateur event. All participants with a WBFF Pro Status are eligible to compete as a WBFF Pro. The Belizean fitness beauty and bodybuilder made the top 10 and won best theme wear last night.

    Vicious Machete Attack Leaves One Dead, Others Injured in Trio Village
    Last night around 10:45, police responded to a scene at Trio Village where they saw Santiago Garcia, 22 , a Belizean Laborer with a chop wound to the back of the head, right cheek, and right wrist. Garcia succumbed to his injuries while being transported to the Independence Poly Clinic. Arturo Choc, 29, a Guatemalan Laborer was also observed with a large cut wound to the right side of the head.

    Belizean model making name in London
    Last year Joyjah Estrada made headlines when she became one of the faces for the UK’s Love magazine. Joyjah, who has more Instagram followers than half of Belize’s entire population, is making headlines again. This time for a modeling gig she signed with the Squad agency which will see her living in London for more than 3 months. “

    Blogs

    One of My Favorite New Businesses in Belize: Delices De France
    Just a few days ago, I walked into the new French bakery in San Pedro, Belize and, for the fifth day in a row, I bought a GORGEOUS baguette sandwich for lunch. Just behind me was a San Pedro traffic officer buying 2 baguettes to-go. And a mom with her 2 kids in school uniforms buying chocolate croissants. Zut alors! I AM IN LOVE WITH THIS NEW BUSINESS ON AMBERGRIS CAYE! And it’s not just me. The French bakery, Delices de France, is classic France here in San Pedro, Belize – making really REALLY great French pastries and bread and the baguette? It is my very favorite.

    International Sourcesizz

    The Army makes an impact near the equator
    Earlier this month, U.S. Army Reserve soldiers assigned to the 672nd Engineer Company, 301st Maneuver Enhancement Brigade, arrived in Belize where they began work on three different construction projects that were intended to benefit several different communities in the region. The projects are part of an annual multinational exercise, Beyond the Horizon, which brings together soldiers, airmen, and marines from the reserve and active components of the U.S. military, as well as personnel from foreign military organizations. The Ladyville Health Clinic is a small clinic in one of the largest villages in Belize, and didn’t have enough space for its patients, or room for all of the medical equipment that the village desired. The Renegades began construction on a new building at the clinic, significantly expanding the clinic’s capacity, and ability to help those in need.

    Ex-Treasure Hunter Again Told to Give Up Coins' Location
    A federal judge is warning an ex-treasure hunter that he could face another contempt-of-court charge if he doesn't reveal the location of 500 missing gold coins. Ohio Judge Algenon Marbley on Friday ordered Tommy Thompson to cooperate by granting power of attorney to allow the government to figure out if a trust in Belize knows the coins' whereabouts, reports the AP. Marbley refused Thompson's request to appoint a civil attorney to help him review records in order to "jog his memory," about where the gold is, as the Columbus Dispatch puts it. "What stretches the court’s credulity is why do you need a civil attorney to explain your own documents," Marbley said. "The court is not going to be complicit in spurious machinations."

    Olympian Simone Biles Breaks Her Silence, Makes Tearful Confession To Fans She Can’t Bottle Up
    The hugely popular show, Dancing with the Stars made its debut in 2005 - and since then, it has managed to wow audiences by putting all kinds of celebrities in a leotard and a pair of dancing shoes! One such celebrity super-star competing in its 24th season is Simone Biles, who is better known for her amazing performance in the 2016 Olympics as part of the U.S. Gymnastics team. Much has already been said about her athletic prowess, but it is something that she did on this dance competition that is making her an audience favorite all over again. Week four into her season on the show, Simone was challenged with dancing to a routine that followed the theme of what she considered her "Most Memorable Year." Of course, the audience had assume 2016 to be that year when she won four gold medals and became one of the most famous gymnasts in the world! However, what Simone chose to highlight instead was something much more personal from way back in the year 2000 when she was just 3-years-old. For those who might not know, this is the year when she was legally adopted by her grandparents. Simone emotionally recalled:

    Become a YLAI
    GREAT NEWS! The deadline for applications for the YLAI (Young Leaders of the Americas Initiative) professional fellows program has been extended to April 28th! Become a YLAI fellow! Submit your applications at https://ylai.state.gov/

    Videos

  • Cricel Castillo WBFF Fitness Pro wins best costume!, 1/2min.

  • Belize 2017, 8min.

  • American Way Magazine - Road Warrior Contest in Belize!, 3min. Shown on American Airlines Airplanes Road Warrior: The Un-Belize-able Edition Our 14th Annual Road Warrior Contest winners head to Belize for some life-changing adventure: zip-lining through the rain forest, climbing ancient Mayan ruins, swimming with sharks and a whole lotta rum. To read the magazine article, please click this link!

  • Snorkeling Hol Chan Marine Reserve and Shark Ray Alley in Belize, 2min. Underwater GoPro footage from my snorkel trip in Belize.

  • AMBERGRIS CAYE /// SAN PEDRO, BELIZE, 3.5min.

  • Beach house in Belize, 13min. We went to my beach house for a week

  • Spring Break in Belize, 4.5min. Video I made with footage from my high school senior mission trip.

  • Uses of Land in Belize, 2.5min.

  • CAYE CAULKER BELIZE 2017, 4min. I went to Belize with 60 people and it was one of the coolest experiences of my life! I made a video about it so here you go!

  • BELIZE ADVENTURE, 4.5min. Made a little video of my adventure in Belize, it was such an amazing experience traveling this beautiful country full of beautiful people.

  • Belize Vegan Roots All-Stars Basketball Highlights, 7.5min. Father to son, having fun. Brother to brother, supporting each other. A winning formula for collective movement, inspired by the high-intensity energy of earth-solar powered, plant-based fuel supply and the family-community oriented coaching guidance of High Priest Kwatamani.

  • Iguana Tour in San Ignacio BELIZE, 3min.

  • Diving in Belize, 4.5min. Produced for the San Diego Underwater Film Festival 2017. The media from this film was shot in Ambergris Caye & St. George's Caye in 2017.

  • Belize: Day 5, Wakeboarding, 5min. Getting towed through the mangroves behind a 15 HP outboard.

  • Belize: Day 5, Dive 2-of-2, 8min. Lobster, Lion Fish, Crab, Loggerhead turtle with Remora and Cobia, Amazing Reef.

  • Belize: Day 2, 6min. Yoga at sunrise; Snorkeling & spear fishing; "Yellow Brick Road"; Caye Caulker; Sip-N-Dip.

  • Belize: Day 3, Dive 1-of-2, 6min. Beautiful reef; Snorkeling with rays and sharks between dives.

  • Belize 2017, 7min.

  • CCCMB 2016 Belize Bandfest Champions, 2min. Congratulations to all of us that are part of this band, we made it, thanks to our band director and choreographer and band manager along with the parent committee

  • Belize Organic Family Farmers Camp, 4min. A visit to farm camp with BOFF Director, Nana Mensah.

  • ADN Maya & Son del Sur, 4min. Encuentros en Ochil | | | Tema musical: Ma'oje'lam [No Se Sabe] Autor: Wilfrido Dzul | Encuentros en Ochil es un proyecto que mueve extraordinarias colaboraciones de grandes artistas de la península de Yucatán para que se proyecte al mundo entero.

    April 23, 2017


    FOR TODAY'S BELIZE WEATHER, CLICK HERE

    Click for our Daily Tropical Weather Report.

    Specials and Events

    Last night's TV news on Channel 7, Channel 5, LOVETV, PGTV, West Vision (Cayo) and CTV 3. Also with the most recent Open Your Eyes, and other specials


    The San Pedro Sun

    Finneous the injured crocodile undergoes surgery
    An injured seven foot crocodile remains at an emergency pen under the care of the American Crocodile Education Sanctuary (ACES) in San Pedro Town. The reptile was found and rescued in mid –March, with its mouth intentionally tied shut with tape and wire. Left to starve and highly vulnerable, the reptile also suffered severe wounds to its neck, which required a surgery that was performed over the Easter weekend. The surgery was a success, but the croc’s health status is still of great concern. Since its rescue, the ACES’ team of crocodile conservationists has been tending to the crocodile, which has been named Finneous. The wounds on his neck are regularly cleaned, while antibiotics are administered into his system to keep any infection at bay. Prior to the surgery, Finnous’ health seemed to have been improving slowly, and according to the team at ACES, there were encouraging signs from the animal, except for the wound on the neck, which was too large to heal on its own. With time running out, they sought the help of a veterinary medical expert.

    Christopher Newport University Volunteers visit island schools
    During their first alumni trip in April 2017, volunteers of Christopher Newport University (CNU) in Newport News, Virginia, USA, visited Ambergris Caye on a mission to visit the island’s schools. Judy Raiford Pantelides, Adjunct Faculty at CNU, along with Lindsey Pantele, Liz Ciancia and Jessica Gateau, graduates of the Master of Arts in Teaching program at CNU, assisted Holy Cross Anglican School, San Pedro High School and San Pedro Roman Catholic Primary School for several days. It was the group’s first alumni trip, as they have visited San Pedro in the past as students. Pantelides has been visiting the island for 12 years, while the other volunteers have visited in 2010 and in 2012 as part of Pantelide’s ‘Teaching Across Cultures’ graduate class. The volunteers also applied for a teaching license and worked, alongside island teachers for two weeks sharing their ideas.

    Misc Belizean Sources

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    United Belizeans of Northern Illinois doing some community service
    United Belizeans of Northern Illinois installing reflectors! Benque entrance! Thanks to students of Mopan Technical High school and Sacred Heart! Thanks to Mr and Mrs Mike Guerra for coordinating!

    Man beaten at Free Zone casino
    A 27-year-old Mexican was beaten early yesterday morning as he left a casino in the Free Zone at the hands of a group of thieves who wanted to strip him of money and discovered that his victim did not carry a ticket with him. B.C., 27, went to the premises of the State Attorney General's Office to file a formal complaint with an agent of the Public Prosecutor's Office of the Common Jurisdiction, since he claimed that malefactors had beheaded him. The aggrieved explained that he went to a casino in the Free Zone during the afternoon of Thursday and for several hours lost in the bets to finish without a single weight. When this guy left the betting house and walked towards the Mexican border, he was intercepted by a group of malefactors, who gave him a wild beating until they left him stunned and about to faint.

    Corozal cleanup
    In celebration of this year's Earth Day the Rotaract Club of Corozal partners off once again with Oceana's wavemakers in a mile long clean up along the highway. Let's protect and keep our planet Earth clean guys!

    Andres Campos Sports Field facelift
    A major facelift and upliftment currently taking place at the Andres Campos Sports Field is most welcomed. The field has been scraped, graded, rolled and a major portion of it has been filled with soil to level it off, so when it rains, it will no longer hold water. The sport's field is constantly used for many sporting activities in Corozal such as soccer, softball and other major community events and activities. With the recent rains, the grass should grow back quickly, so that the field can continue to be enjoyed by our community.

    Mountain Pine Ridge Earth Day cleanup
    Happy EarthDay to all!!! Remember to do something positive for the EARTH. FCD congratulates Blancaneaux, GATA, Hidden Valley, Forest Department, Positive Environmental Group and all others that did the clean up campaign in the Mountain Pine Ridge!!! Kudos to all.

    Culture is contagious! From South to North Belizeans express culture through arts!
    On Good Friday, the Orange Walk Banquitas House of Culture (NICH) carried out its fourth sawdust carpet art display on Church and Muffles Streets . Over 100 students, young children, and older folks participated in this year’s preparations and exhibition as part of the Holy Week activities.

    The Reporter

    Car jacker gets 7 years jail time
    Justice was swift and landed a 22 year-old car jacker behind bars on a seven-year sentence after he pleaded guilty to charges brought against him for the robbery of a Belize City taxi man earlier this week. San Ignacio resident, Shawn Rodriguez appeared before Senior Magistrate Sharon Frazer on April 20, and was charged with ‘robbery’ and ‘deadly means of harm’. He pleaded guilty to the robbery charge and pleaded for leniency since it was a first time offence. Rodriguez is expected back in court on June 2, to answer to the charge of ‘deadly means of harm.

    Jaguars attack and kill farmer
    The badly decomposed body of a man, whom it is believed was attacked and killed by jaguars, was pulled out of a well in Progresso village, Orange Walk town early Friday morning. The body of 45 year-old Baltazar Lino was pulled from a 5-foot deep well on his farm. Due to the condition of the body, an onsite post mortem was conducted. The pathologist told family members that Lino died as a result of a jaguar attack. Lino had a large cut wound to his neck. Jaguars are said to roam the immediate area, and the family says that they found swveral scratch marks around the well where the body was discovered.

    The Belize Times

    What the Children See, the Children Do
    By: Tanya Santos, UWG President.About a month or so ago I was watching the local news on television when an advertisement aired showing a woman making sexually explicit moves. It took me a few more seconds before I realized what was actually being advertised. It was alcohol, specifically Belikin Stout. Then this week again I saw another advertisement, with a sexily clad young lady being enticed to ‘go for a ride’ in a Nissan Frontier. Both of these commercials are being aired during prime time on local television networks. Thankfully my keenly observant seven-year-old daughter wasn’t around to see this, but since it airs during prime time it is inevitable that she will see at least one of them and ask the tough questions. Now I am forced to ask: Am I the only one offended by the fact that companies such as these continue to perpetuate the sexual exploitation of women?

    A Dangerous MF… Part II
    By: Norris Hall. Sedi Elrington seems to feel that he has enough political currency to fool the people of his constituency. In an earlier snafu when he again put his foot in his mouth, he asserted that the people of his constituency couldn’t care less about the Belize/Guatemala problem. He failed to grasp that his national responsibility as Foreign Minister goes beyond his more personal concern about retaining his seat in the Legislature by a persistent hoodwinking of his supporters. He seems unable to grasp his national responsibility. So far removed or indifferent is he from the gravity of the Guatemalan claim, that as he once sat in a press conference with his Guatemalan counterpart, he allowed to slip by, unchallenged, an assertion made by the Guatemalan FM about a non-existent agreement Guatemala claimed it had with Belize for Belize to suspend the building of military installation on its southern cayes or for a Forward Operating Base on the Belize side of the Sarstoon River, which forms a natural border between the two countries.

    Thinking Out Loud
    By: Kevin Bernard. As we jump back into the grind after an extended Easter break, I thank God that for the most part, as far as bad news goes, it was relatively quiet. Still, there were notable tragedies, including the death of a child on San Pedro and the loss of two brothers here in Orange Walk. I send out condolences to the families and wish them comfort during this difficult time. By the time many of you read this in the newspaper, the BNTU will have elected a new President to replace outgoing brother Luke Palacio. I wish to state here and now on the record that I reject the attempts by this government to influence and manipulate the results of that election. That blatant foolishness has got to stop, and those involved on the highest levels should be ashamed of themselves.

    MY PERSPECTIVE – PRO LIFE?
    There is a Roman Catholic Benedictine nun by the name of Sister Joan Chittister who has become quite renowned over the course of her career. She is 80 years of age now, and is a prolific author and public speaker. She has tackled difficult topics such as spirituality, religious life, peace, and justice for all people, especially women and the poor. She was the prioress of the Benedictine sisters of Erie, Pennsylvania, and she holds a Master’s Degree from the University of Notre Dame and a Doctorate from Penn State University. Currently she is Co-Chair of the Global Peace Initiative of Women, a United Nations-sponsored organization creating a worldwide network of women peacemakers.

    Bex Walks Hellish Road to Miss Universe
    Miss Belize Universe 2016, Rebecca Rath, won the hearts of Belizeans who banded together to cheer her on during her intense journey to the Miss Universe pageant in Manila in January 2017. Reproach and odium, however, allegedly came from an unlikely source – the Miss Belize Universe country director, Opal Enriquez. In a five-part blog released piece by piece during the 2017 Easter break weekend, Rebecca’s father, Tony Rath, the acclaimed photographer based in Dangriga made the detailed and insightful revelations of the family’s dalliance with the pageant world. It wasn’t just fun and roses – and they did not expect it to be all smooth sailing but neither were they prepared for the turbulence they would experience. Rebecca was inexperienced in the pageant world but as her father meticulously outlined, she was born to thrive. “You’re built for a kill shot, not high heels,” Tony told his daughter when Bex, as she is affectionately known, first pitched the idea of competing in the Miss Belize pageant. The sleek “rough and tumble” volleyball enthusiast would soon (in a few short months) turn herself into a powerful beauty queen contender, putting in hours upon hours of practice to walk in high heels, model and rehearse speeches—and the smile? That one came naturally.

    Barrow, Faber and the BNTU!
    By: Major (Ret’d) Lloyd Jones. Patrick Faber boldly announced on April 3rd, 2017, that he and the Barrow Administration intends to give, as an honorarium, one million dollars of tax payers money to those teachers who did not heed the noble call of the Belize National Teachers Union (BNTU) to stand up for Belize. The backlash was fast and furious: the BNTU, the NTUCB, the CWU, the BCCI and just about every decent Belizean complained about this glaring use of public funds for overt political ends even as Faber and the UDP raised taxes on the poor. Many thought that the move by Faber and Dean Barrow was a long term investment to undermine any future industrial action by the BNTU. Many thought the honorarium would cause more teachers to defect the next time around. Remember now, the BNTU has already told Barrow that re-registration must commence in July of this year, as required by law. And we all know that Barrow, Faber and the UDP don’t wish to clean up the voters list, certainly not before the next municipal elections. They hope to take us to the next general elections with that same contaminated voters list if we let them.

    Shenanigans at Sales Tax Department – Part I
    The Ministry of Finance’s attempt to explain away the allegations made by OIC of PG Elmer Reyes, is a week attempt to deflect any damage Reyes’ letter may have caused. How can the Ministry say that it categorically rejects “any suggestion of manipulation on the part of the GST Senior Management of any Audit carried out by mid-level to lower level GST Auditors,” when Reyes’ letter sites several cases without calling names? One would think that instead of throwing Reyes under the bus, the FINSEC would have embraced this opportunity to meet with Reyes and review the cases he referred to. After all, the objective of the GST ACT is to protect the tax payer from abuse by the GST Department, and to protect the revenue from unscrupulous tax payers. This means that the law demands just and fair treatment of the tax payer. The Commissioner must act within the confines of the law. Any assessment methodology adapted must be fair and transparent, and must conform to those internationally accepted standards. The Commissioner has an obligation to share methodology and working papers with the tax payer.

    Guatemalan Congress Rejects Bid to Change Official Map
    The Guatemalan Congress recently considered a proposal for its official map to be changed to include Belize as part of its territory with the annotation that there is a “territorial, insular and maritime differendum pending resolution.” If passed, the map would include a dotted line instead of a straight line indicating the boundary and above the dotted line would be written the words “limit not defined.” However, the proposal was voted down. 84 parliamentarians voted against it while 26 voted in its favour.

    Barrow Approves Faber’s MILLION DOLLAR Middle Finger
    Word has been received that the Ministry of Finance has given its approval for the disbursement of a MILLION DOLLAR honorarium to teachers who did not join the strike of the Belize National Teachers’ Union (BNTU) last October. The big payout was promised by Education Minister, Hon. Patrick Faber (with the Prime Minister’s consent). Faber told the media on April 3rd that they hoped to make the payment before the Easter break. However, we have been informed that the Ministry of Finance only just notified of its approval this week. We have learned that the payment could not be disbursed for all non-striking teachers because the responsible government staff was still processing the salary adjustment for teachers and public servants to be reflected in this month’s payroll. Therefore, the honorarium should be paid out next month.

    TOMARI’s FAMILY SUES MONKEY BAY
    It’s been just over 14 months since the 14-year-old American student, Tomari Jackson, died in Belize from drowning while he was on a week-long study-abroad trip. He was part of a group of 33 US students and their chaperones from North Cobb High School in Kennessaw, Georgia. His family is now suing Belize’s Monkey Bay Wildlife Sanctuary, the Cobb County School System, and the trip’s chaperones. A key piece of the evidence expected to be part of the case is video footage, which, according to US Press reports, captures Jackson’s last moments alive. He was wearing a portable camera, and his family believes that it is proof that his death was preventable.

    Brothers Die in 40Ft Well
    Two brothers died over the Easter weekend after suffocating. They were trying to clean out a well, but the toxic gases at the bottom overwhelmed them. It happened on Holy Friday, April 14, at the Coyoc family farm in the Goat Hill area of Orange Walk, sometime around 11:30 a.m. Twenty-six year-old Jeovani “Jovi” Coyoc, and his older brother, 41 year-old Isidro “John” Coyoc were working on the 40-foot well to clean it. Jeovani was at the bottom, and he suddenly started to choke on toxic fumes. Seeing his brother’s distress, Isidro Coyoc reportedly went looking for help nearby, but he couldn’t find any.

    If Dah Noh Soh
    Woman beater… Patrick Faber, that little boy in a man’s body who wants to be the next Prime Minister of Belize, is a man who seems to enjoy beating up women. That really pisses me off. I was reading through some of the documents from his divorce just now and it’s a sad, sad thing what he put that woman through. Imagine that she had to basically run from this drunken, abusive fool to escape, leave the country even. He’s a sick little guy. And it’s a pattern. I remember him beating up another woman who ended up reporting him to the Police, and then withdrawing the report because, see, he was her boss at the Ministry of Education. I can’t imagine where this aggression against women comes from, but I know studies suggest that very often violence against women masks homosexual tendencies, or maybe even over-compensation for some deficiency in some other area. Just saying. And he wants to lead this country. He thinks he has what it takes, this little pissant who loves punching woman who are much smaller than him in the face. Incredible. I’m wrestling with my conscience here on whether I should just release the official Court document…we’ll see what happens.

    Questions to Ministers
    Would the Member for Queen Square and Minister of Finance please say now exactly how much money was paid to Mark Espat or his company for the restructuring of BarrowBond 3.0? Could he further say if indeed any monies have been paid to Attorney-General Michael Peyrefitte for his role in the restructuring as has been reported? Would the Member for Queen Square and Prime Minister please say if there has been any accounting for the monies collected abroad by his wife, the Special Envoy for Women and Children, on behalf of the children of Belize? Could he further provide a detailed list of how that money has been spent in Belize? Would the Member for Corozal Bay and Minister of Health please say what is the status of the Paediatric Ward at the KHMH, which was opened just before elections in 2015? Could he confirm or deny reports that the ward is not open to children over 5 years of age and parents staying with their children must sleep on the floor?

    No Fairytale Ending for Princess…
    Belize City Police are still on the lookout for a man, said to be Hispanic, for the brutal murder of Indira Thompson, better known as Princess, just before dawn on good Friday. Thompson, 35, was stabbed to death in a small shack built on the grounds of the old Bellevue Hotel. While Police have not revealed why they have come to that conclusion, they say that the man may have tried to force himself on Princess, and when she fought off his advances, she was killed. According to reports, at around 4:00am that morning Princess arrived at the home she sometimes shared with a friend, Carl Morter. Morter claimed she was in the presence of another man, and he left them there when he went out to buy something. He further claims that when he arrived back, he found Princess dead on a mattress covered in blood, and the unknown Hispanic man hurriedly leaving. When media spoke to Morter, he displayed a jagged cut on his neck which he says was inflicted by Princess’ killer.

    FABER Fails Again! – Elena Victorious Despite UDP Tampering
    “Never in the almost 50 years of the BNTU have we seen this type of interference…” – Outgoing BNTU President Luke Palacio Voting finished at 4:08 this afternoon, and at 6:25pm today, the announcement was made that Elena Smith, educator, Senator and firebrand union member, had been elected new President of the Belize National Teachers Union, having garnered a majority of the 630 votes cast. It is an especially significant victory for Smith since she had drawn the wrath of the UDP government for her very vocal role in the BNTU strike of October, 2016. To show their displeasure, and likely fear, the UDP in the days leading up to the election did everything in its considerable power to sway the results of the election away from Smith and towards their chosen horse in the race, Mario Mesh from the Corozal Branch.

    WPC Becomes Fifth Cop Interdicted in One Month
    A woman police officer was placed on interdiction earlier this week. She joins another four officers who were recently interdicted and charged internally with “prejudice to good order.” PC #1241 Ann Marie Anthony was caught on surveillance footage stealing 4 fifty dollar bills during a raid at the “Little Red Shop” in Santa Elena, Cayo on Good Friday. The storeowner filed her report on Tuesday, April 18 and told Police that she was at her establishment on the said date when at around 9:27a.m., some Police officers arrived to conduct a search for liquor (according to the Intoxicating Liquor Licensing Act, Chapter 150 of the laws of Belize, “all licensed premises in which liquor is sold under a publican’s general license shall be closed (a) on Christmas Day and Good Friday”). During that search the cops seized assorted liquor but it was only after they had departed that she realized that $200 was missing from her cash box. When she reviewed the footage from her surveillance cameras, she noted that it was the WPC who had stealthily removed the money while the raid was being conducted.

    Minor Drowns…Another Narrowly Escapes Death
    With much focus on water activities during the hot Easter weekend, too frequently the holiday is marred by unfortunate and tragic drowning incidents. The past weekend was no exception, as one young child unfortunately lost his life and another is hospitalized at the KHMH while her family hopes that she will pull through. The deceased is 6 year-old Zaem Torres, a resident of San Pedro Town who fell into a vat on Holy Thursday night, April 13. At around 11 p.m., Police visited the Bay Side area of San Pedro town where they saw several persons trying to resuscitate the baby. He was immediately rushed to the Otto Rodriguez Polyclinic, but he was pronounced dead on arrival by the doctors on duty.

    Belizean Waters…Guatemalan Owned!
    Toledo’s Wil Maheia who went on yet another trip to the Sarstoon on Tuesday has reported that Guatemalan fisherfolk were observed fishing with illegal gillnets in numbers. This, he said, was occurring within a mile from Belize’s Sarstoon Forward Operating Base. He observed 12 Guatemalan vessels in Belizean waters. He questioned for the umpteenth time, “what is the use of the Base if it is not going to stop all the illegal incursions into Belize?” Maheia notes that for a while, the Belize Coast Guard and the Belize Defense Force seemed to be doing their jobs and the incursions appeared to have come to a halt but he surmises that this might have been because of their constant trips to the area but “the minute we dropped our guard it’s like business as usual.”

    Judgment Day
    Once upon a time, I respected Dean Oliver Barrow. Don’t hate me. I really did. Now I can’t believe I was so stupid. DOB is a power-hungry, ruthless, selfish, uncaring man who really does not give a damn about the people of Belize. To him, we are worth nothing more than a vote on election day. The rest is superfluous. He really has brought this country to its knees economically and socially just to cement his legacy and political victory for the UDP. I wonder if he realizes, when he is staring at his ceiling in the dead of night, what he has done to the people and country he swore to serve. I have listened to this man swear to his own integrity as if his word is binding law. It makes me nauseous. He is as corrupt as the most corrupt Minister in his Cabinet. His family has creamed off the public trough and continues to do so, simply because he has decided that they are the ‘bestest’ and ‘brilliantest,’ and nobody should dare to question him. He has made of nepotism a fine art, and condones the most blatant corruption and abuse of the public trust. He will leave office fabulously wealthy, with every member of his family richer for his time there. But he will leave the country broken and divided.

    Bigger than the Garland
    As it always is, the debate over the results of the annual Holy Saturday Cross Country race has been fast and furious. As it always does, Facebook has become an instant breeding ground for experts – in this case cycling and sporting psychologists, analysts, trainers and coaches. None of the passionate rhetoric will change the fact that a Guatemalan cyclist, Alejandro Padilla, the defending cross-country champ, will be taking the garland to Guatemala once again. And not one of the Facebook arguments which generally deteriorate into petty and personal insults will change the fact that the top three spots were taken by foreigners – the second spot by an American, 48 years old, and the third by another Guatemalan, Alder Torres. We extend congratulations to all the athletes who participated in the gruelling race – ALL of them regardless of nationality. Like all Belizeans, we share the disappointment that it was not one of our own who crossed that finish line first. And like most Belizeans, we share a certain discontentment in the knowledge that we have been upstaged by a country which refuses to accept our territorial integrity and continues to annex territory which is ours. But we hold absolutely no malice against the Guatemalan who won, or indeed any of the foreigners who bested our Belizeans.

    BDF Challenge Bandits in PLB Football Playoffs – Verdes Take on Police United…
    The Belize Defence Force and Verdes FC clinched their Premier League of Belize football playoff berths in the games of Week 14 over the weekend. Verdes FC was a shoo-in for the No.3 berth getting an easy 3-0 win by FC Belize’s forfeit at the Norman Broaster Stadium on Sunday. The BDF won the No.4 berth by a 2-1 win over FC Belize in a midweek match at the MCC Garden on Wednesday night, where Ernest Wiltshire scored first for FC Belize, but goals by Shane Flores and Brian Martinez gave the BDF the 2-1 win. At the MCC Garden on Sunday, the BDF drew 2-2 with Police United; with Colombian import Anderson Cordoba and Trevor “Burger” Lennan scoring for the cops, while Shane “Chucky” Flores and Jeremy Gentle equalized for the soldiers.

    Kaylon Godoy & Roberta Usher Win BBBFF Strongman
    Kaylon Godoy and Roberta Usher won the 2017 Belize Body Building & Body Fitness Federation (BBBFF) Strongman competition at the BTL park in Belize City on Sunday. The women competed in 4 disciplines which included bench press, squats, dead-lift & tire flip; while the men competed in 6 disciplines: bench press, squats, dead-lift, tire flip, farmer’s walk and the ultimate crowd pleaser – the Vehicle Pull.

    Guatemala Takes the Garland…Again
    No Belizean brought home the garland this year, as last year’s champ – Guatemalan cyclist Alejandro Padilla Miranda returned as Holy Saturday Cross Country Cycling Champion in the 89th edition of the Cycling Federation of Belize’s annual classic race from Belize City to San Ignacio and back on the George Price Highway. Padilla clocked 5:53:05 over the 140-mile race, which was 13 minutes slower than 19-year-old Ryan Bauman’s 2008 record time of 5:40:12. The visitors also cleaned up most of the cash prizes on the road; Padilla and American Patrick Raines had sat in the back of the peloton conserving their energy until the final 19 miles, but Padilla won another $625 in prizes from mile 8 to mile 6. Raines won 4 station prizes of $1,000 each at Mile 13, Leslie’s Imports, at Jawmeighan’s grave and at the BWS offices, as well as 8 other prizes between Vernon Street and Famers market, for a total of $5,050 in prizes.

    Breaking Belize NewsPJ

    La Union border crossing under watch
    The popular Belize-Mexico crossing spot in Northern Belize is seeing an increase in traffic. Many Belizeans cross over in canoes to shop for cheap grocery items. Customs and Immigration personnel have installed a sign that says only residents from neighboring villages will be allowed to shop there.

    Coast Guard accuses Admiral Borland of abuse
    According to reports, a Coast Guard has filed an official police report against his superior. Admiral John Borland is being accused of threatening the serviceman. Reports are that the coast guard officer is requesting court action into the matter.

    Police find decomposed body in Progresso Village, Corozal
    On Thursday, April 20 about 5:00 p.m., police visited an area about 31/2 miles southwest of Progresso Village, Corozal District where they saw the body of Baltazar Santos Lino, 44, a labourer of Progresso Village in an advance state of decomposition floating face down inside a well.

    Motorcycle stolen from owner’s yard in Belize City
    According to police reports, 35-year-old Robert Gladden of Belize City reported that yesterday between 8 and 9:30 a.m., his black 2016 Lifan Brand motorcycle valued at $2,900.00 was stolen from his yard.

    Homemade 16 gauge found by police in Belize City
    Cops on South Side Belize City have taken another gun off the streets and out of the hands of criminal elements. This time, it was a homemade 16 gauge firearm. According to police reports, at around midday yesterday cops conducted a search in an abandoned lot on Riverside Street.

    Vehicle burns in Belmopan
    According to police reports, just before midday on Thursday, cops visited the corner of Queen Elizabeth Boulevard and Mandarin Street in the Cohune Walk area of Belmopan City where they saw a black 2007 Honda Pilot SUV vehicle engulfed in flames.

    Blogs

    Old Belize
    Modern visitors can get a glimpse of colonial era life by visiting Old Belize, a combination museum and adventure park located on the outskirts of Belize City. Originally not much more than a beachfront bar and a place to buy souvenirs, Old Belize is now one of the top visitor destinations in the country and includes a giant water slide, museum, exhibitions on all the different cultures that make up Belize’s melting pot society, gift shops, a floating trampoline, restaurants, cafes, and even an enormous rope swing that arcs out over the tranquil azure waters of Cucumber (Kukumba) Beach. Old Belize is located five miles outside the city limits of Belize City on the George Price Highway (still widely known as the Western Highway). Old Belize is open all year round except for Mondays and Good Friday (three days before Easter Sunday). The beach is open from Tuesday through Friday from 8:00 AM to 4:30 PM and on Saturday and Sunday from 9:00 AM to 5:00 PM. You can come to Old Belize to learn more about the history and peoples of Belize or simply treat it as an adventure park with lots of rides, games, and delicious food. Despite being created specifically for foreign tourists, Old Belize is now equally popular with local Belizeans. Guided tours are a great way to experience all the best parts of Old Belize.

    International Sourcesizz

    TT President says region should dump Privy Council
    Trinidad and Tobago President, Anthony Carmona, has expressed frustration that his country and other CARICOM states have not replaced the Privy Council with the Caribbean Court of Justice (CCJ) as their final authority in legal matters. Though 12 of the 15 CARICOM territories have signed the agreement establishing the CCJ, which was launched in 2005 as the final arbiter in legal disputes among and within regional members, only Barbados, Guyana, Dominica and Belize have accepted this court as the end decision-maker. Carmona, who served as a High Court Judge before being appointed as President in 2013, expressed his frustration during a presentation on Thursday to University of the West Indies, Cave Hill Campus, undergraduate organisation, ‘Students Today Alumni Tomorrow’.

    Status of forests is ‘dire’ as world marks Earth Day
    They cover a third of the world’s land mass, help to regulate the atmosphere, and offer shelter, sustenance and survival to millions of people, plants and animals. But despite some progress, the planet’s woodlands continue to disappear on a dramatic scale. Since 1990 the world has lost the equivalent of 1,000 football fields of forests every hour, according to World Bank development indicators from last year. That’s 1.3 million square kilometres of forest, an area larger than South Africa, according to the international financial institution. Deforestation and forest degradation have caused a surge of greenhouse gases into the atmosphere, according to conservationists. Belize and Bolivia have seen their carbon emissions skyrocket in recent years as a result of increased deforestation, the World Bank reported.

    Videos

  • Belize 2017. 5 year Anniversary, 8min. The 2nd and 3rd songs in this video by Brandon Herring are original songs written and performed by him. I have never heard sweeter melodies. He made some songs about our little island. How special!

  • Cricel Castillo competing in the North American Fitness Pro Competition, 26min.

  • My First Project, 1min. Belize vacation

  • Diving in Belize, 3.5min.

  • Belize Ziplining Adventure, 1min. Nice crash landing...! Watch in HD! Nohoch Che'en National Park.

  • Family Cave Tubing Adventure in Belize, 4min. During our Carnival Cruise in the Caribbean we booked an excursion that took us cave tubing in Belize. The trip was a wonderful experience for all ages. Our youngest was 9-years-old and enjoyed it.

  • Monkeys In Belize! Vlog, 9.5min.

  • Caye Caulker, Belize | go slow man, 7.5min.

    April 22, 2017


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    Specials and Events

    Last night's TV news on Channel 7, Channel 5, LOVETV, PGTV, West Vision (Cayo) and CTV 3. Also with the most recent Open Your Eyes, and other specials


    The San Pedro Sun

    DFC Eco Rangers are on a mission: Keep San Pedro garbage-free!
    Kay stated that the kids are excited to receive their t-shirts, and are developing fun plans for the Rangers. “The Rangers have been effectively raising awareness on how to properly dispose of garbage, and this is a great way to get our youth involved. The kids are excited to get their t-shirts because they have been working hard together, and have united themselves in doing something positive for our community. The Rangers take pride in their actions, and now, whenever they see others throwing garbage, it becomes a reflex for them to advocate about the importance of keeping San Pedro clean. You can tell that the kids are inspired, and we know the Rangers will be expanding,” said Kay. As an adult supervisor of the Rangers, Kay said that the neighborhood residents have all pitched in to pay a yard worker to clean the bushy areas of Leeward Street. However, he stated that the Rangers would like to seek assistance from the San Pedro Town Council to provide their area with blue garbage drums, to enforce the law for residents to keep their yards clean, and to provide occasional cleaning services.

    GOB denies wrong deeds in the GST Department
    Reports of the alleged manipulation of General Sales Tax (GST) audit results by the senior management of that Governmental Department have been denied by the Ministry of Finance. The accusations surfaced from a leaked letter sent to the Solicitor General of Belize by a concerned senior GST officer. The allegations have raised serious questions regarding the management of the department, and as such, the Belize Chamber of Commerce and Industry (BCCI) have demanded an investigation into the allegations made by the GST officer. The four-page letter dated December 28, 2016 suggests intervention at the highest levels of the department to assess businesses at much higher collection figures than those arrived at by the auditor. However, the auditor in question says he was called into meetings by his superiors and says that he reluctantly did what he was told to do, even though he knew it was wrong. The auditor also added that his higher ups furthermore instructed him not to show the agents the method used to assess, which is structured to yield the highest collection figure. He also stated that while some assessments went un-appealed, others were questioned by senior GST officers.

    Leroy Goff officially charged for Delson Paguada’s shooting
    On Monday, April 10th 30-year-old Leroy Goff was arraigned at the Belize Magistrate’s Court. Accused of shooting 18-year-old Delson Paguada and pointing his gun at Paguada’s 14 year-old brother in San Pedro Town, Goff was charged with dangerous harm, use of deadly means of harm, and aggravated assault with the use of a firearm. He was then remanded to Central Prison. Goff returned to court on Wednesday, April 12th, where he was granted a Supreme Court bail of $7,500. He was then released under conditions that ensure he will return to court on Thursday, June 29th, along with any required dates after that.

    Ambergris Today

    Two Fake Police Officers Detained Pending Charges In Belize City
    Police reports indicate that the department received information of two male persons dressed in what appeared to be police uniforms acting suspiciously in the vicinity of Publics Supermarket on the Phillip Goldson Highway on Wednesday, April 19, 2017, at around 4:30 p.m. The two men were wearing a khaki shirt, long blue trousers with a green streak on the sides resembling the official uniforms of police officers. One had on a green belt while the other wore a red one. They were identified as 22-year-old Dorian Blair of a Gibnut Street address Belize City and 39-year-old Barrington Slusher of a Brown Street address Belize City.

    Belize Barrier Reef Must Be Safeguarded From Inherent Dangers Of Offshore Oil
    In a press release issued yesterday, Thursday, April 21, 2017, the Belize Coalition to Save Our Natural Heritage calls out the Government of Belize as it Fails to Honor Commitment with UNESCO on Offshore Oil Ban. Given the economic importance, biological significance and cultural relevance of the Belize Barrier Reef to Belize and Belizeans through goods and services such as coastal protection, tourism and fishing, all reasonable effort should be implemented to ensure that the sensitive ecosystems that comprise the Belize Barrier Reef Reserve System (reefs, sea grass beds and mangroves) are safeguarded from the irreparable destruction caused offshore oil. Of note is that UNESCO, the United Nations Educational Scientific and Cultural Organization, in its response to the Government of Belize’s strategy to get our World Heritage Sites off the Sites In Danger list, have also stated that the proposed one kilometer buffer needs “revision in order to secure the protection of the property’s Outstanding and Universal Value.”

    Misc Belizean Sources

    mzz

    Miss Belize: the Rebecca Response
    Everyone is entitled to an opinion, Sher and I respect your right to yours. I reached out to you multiple times and I always expressed how thankful I was to you. After I won Miss Belize, my life quickly spiraled and got busier and you of all people should know that that is how it goes. Being new and "green" to pageantry, I didn't realize it but I continued..I thought we had formed a bond and when I realized that you never reached out to me either I was sad about that too. I always took your advice and never felt like I knew it all. Not once have I ever thought I am better than anyone nor have I let any "fame" go to my head but I don't need a Facebook post for people to see that. I work hard, I am fair and I know what it is I believe in. My experience with Opal was not good and I saw how badly she treated the other girls. She did not do even the basics of what she was supposed to do to get to Miss Universe. If it was not for my family and the Belizean public we would never have made it to Manila...

    Miss Belize: former Queen Responds to Opal By Tanisha Vernon
    Wolf in Sheep Clothing vs The Controversial Miss Belize Universe 07-08. Approximately 10 years ago I had participated in the Miss Belize Pageant. I remembered the series of events that occurred like it was yesterday. Before I venture into all the mishaps and adversities. Let me briefly introduce myself, I am 29yrs Tanisha Vernon, the last Miss Belize Universe to be crowned at the former Belize Civic Center by Maria Jeffries, who had recently crowned Rebecca Rath. Confusing right? Yes, Opal Enriquez and her team had intentionally omitted my title and reign for her own selfish reasons. Prior to the pageant they had the audacity to ask for my mentorship and sponsorship that I humbly denied for many reasons. At no point their organization members had offered an invitation to me so that I can passed on the crown to Ms Rebbeca Rath.

    Miss Belize: the response to Tony Rath
    I am not a photographer, not a journalist, nor a lawyer, but I am simply a person who has a heart just as anyone else. Perhaps we will never know all sides. And whilst you the reader will form your own opinion, allow me to assist you in developing your view on the matter, as I merely share my experiences with Rebecca Rath and her family. In the world of pageantry, all is never the way it really seems. I, Sherima Guity can remember convincing Rebecca to enter the Miss Belize pageant, which was clearly not on her bucket list. However, her ‘green’ state to pageantry only challenged my abilities because I trusted my passion for pageantry and was confident that once I had the support of my family, It would have been easier to capture yet another crown for my beloved Stann Creek district. In this light, Rebecca Rath was treated with the very same respect as all other queens I had trained vying for a pageant title. This even meant travelling to all events and personal practices I had with Rebecca at my own expense, as I have always done when dealing with any other contestant. I did all this while simultaneously training another queen for a different national level pageant.

    Belize Literary Prize
    Don't Forget: The Deadline for submissions to the Belize Literary Prize is April 30th. Flash Fiction and Poetry are this year's genres.

    Book Week
    Look out for Book Week Activities next week in Punta Gorda and San Ignacio Towns.

    Joyjah Estrada Signs with an international modeling agency
    "I just love being in front of the cameras! My favourite part is that you become different versions of yourself, different characters, it excites me"! This journey begun in 2012 when I did my first photo shoot with Danny Hun in PG It was as if a shinning light sparked from within me, I knew right then modeling was what I enjoyed doing.. I then worked with a number of different local photographers Delia Padilla being the main one, did a couple runway walks in fashion shows by local designers like Joris H. Groenendaal Rebecca Stirm it was so much fun!. Once I came onto social media I quickly realized I needed more frequent and fresh content, chasing photographers and waiting on jobs was becoming old and that's when we decided to invest in our first camera and Brandunn became my personal photographer overnight!.. Fast forward years later with the support of my amazing supporters dreams started to come true I was shot by super model @kendalljenner met the incredibly talented @kegrand and then landed the cover of @thelovemagazine WOW! I thought to myself! Is this for real? Is this a dream?...

    What is tha going up next to Grand Colony???
    Zip line? It's a watch tower...they are....Ashcroft... building a FIVE story condo unit....this way people wanting to buy can see what their view would be from which ever floor they wanted

    Second Meeting of the Council of Ministers of Foreign Affairs from the Central American Integration System (SICA) and the Minister of Foreign Affairs of the Republic of Turkey
    The Council of Ministers of Foreign Affairs from the Central American Integration System (SICA) and the Minister of Foreign Affairs of the Republic of Turkey met in Istanbul on 20 April 2017 with the purpose of further strengthening and diversifying the relationship between SICA Member States and Turkey. They reaffirmed the excellent ties of friendship and solidarity that exist between both Parties and reiterated their will to continue strengthening their relationship in the diplomatic, political, economic and cooperation for development, and coincided on the importance of enhancing multilateralism. The Council of Ministers of Foreign Affairs of SICA welcomed the incorporation of Turkey as an Extra Regional Observer State of SICA in 2015.

    Letter: Congratulations BNTU on a successful convention
    The Belize Progressive Party (BPP), in keeping with its social-oriented moorings, takes this opportunity to congratulate the Belize National Teachers’ Union (BNTU) on hosting a successful convention, which saw the smooth transition of leadership. The BPP recognises the significant role embodied by the union movement, in terms of ensuring that good governance practices and principles become the rule, as opposed to remaining the exception. The BNTU has demonstrated on numerous occasions, its resolve for ensuring that in conformity with the rule of law, equal rights and justice prevails. It is due to their staunch actions of remaining at the forefront of worker-related issues, the BNTU has distinguished itself as a trailblazer in Belize’s union movement.

    Joyful and Exciting Music
    The National Youth Orchestra of Belize presents an evening of joyful and exciting music in Corozal District on April 29th, 2017, at the Corozal Community College Auditorium starting at 6:30pm. Special performance by the CCC Marching Band. See you there! Tickets are available for $5.

    BBIA Book Week 2017
    Book Week is next week, and on Saturday, April 29th, they are having a Book Week event at the Cayo Welcome Center. "Book Week 2017 is coming up, save the date!"

    International Festival of Culture
    May 4th-7th, 2017 Central Park, Benque Viejo Del Carmen

    Forest fires are already having a major impact in the Vaca Forest Reserve
    Farms located nearby the reserve have also been impacted.

    Raptors of Mexico and Central America, is Bill Clark's best Raptor book yet!
    Happy to see my friends Ryan Phillips, Richard Kuehn, Yeray Seminario, and Sergio Seipke making major photographic and other contributions. My Solitary Eagle photo was artfully transformed by the awesome artist John Schmitt.

    Did you know that the U.S. is a major importer of Belizean sugar?
    Last week the Embassy Political and Economic Team visited Santander Belize, Ltd. in Valley of Peace village to learn about this fascinating and growing industry. Principal investors Jose and David Rodriguez led the team on a tour of the farms and the facilities. The multimillion dollar investment is a fully integrated operation encompassing sugar cane production, harvesting, milling and bagasse co-generation. The company directly employs approximately 1000 people, roughly 800 of them Belizeans, and uses state of the art harvesting, irrigation, sugar and cogeneration production processes.

    Celebrate the Reef "Reef Week Hol Chan 2017"
    It's that time of the year again, where we come together and celebrate the reef, through a week filled of fun and exciting activities!!!!

    Lionfish Tournament May 12 in San Pedro
    Beach party at Estel's

    Channel 7

    BNTU Election, The Blow By Blow Account
    Last night, the late breaking news at 6:30 was that Senator Elena Smith had been elected as the new National President of the Belize National Teachers Union. Our news team was still in San Roman Corozal. So, we only had the broad strokes of the annual convention which elected a new leader after Luke Palacio had reached his 9 year term limit. Tonight, we have a full recap of the union's election day, right up to the moment when Elena Smith was declared the winner. Hundreds of teachers showed up for the second day of their 47th annual convention to vote for their new National President. Their choices: Mario Mesh from the Host Branch of Corozal, Troy Coleman from Stann Creek, and the most well-known candidate of the 3, Senator Elena Smith.

    A New Union General Secretary Leads The Way
    Of the 686 teachers who voted in the convention 349 of them voted for Elena Smith. Troy Coleman got 197 votes - not 147, as we had reported; and Mario Mesh got 140 votes. Elena Smith still managed to get more votes than both of them combined, and she now takes over from Luke Palacio. But, while Palacio is no longer the head of the union, he still remains on the executive as the first vice president. That's because no other candidate stepped up to challenge him for that post in yesterday's convention. Jorge Mejia was also returned as the national treasurer because, again, nobody challenged him for the post. The other new executive member is Ruth Shoman, who was elected in yesterday's convention. Following her victory, she spoke with the press about her new role, and about the direction for the new leadership:

    COLA's Horse Won
    So, as you saw in our story, the teachers placed a lot of emphasis on what they strongly believed was political interference designed to manipulate their union. The grassroots organization COLA, which has been a faithful ally of the BNTU, showed some presence in San Roman to observe the elections. President, Giovanni Brackett told us that he is hoping that the results reflected the will of the teachers, not PUDP scheming: Giovanni Brackett, President - COLA: "We didn't want to be up here, because we believe that we could support from afar. But it's very simple, the government has interfered within this election. I have gotten calls about this election over the last few weeks, try to ignore it. The latest reports that I have gotten is that there had actually meetings within the different parliamentarians within the government who have met with teachers and have gone to having a strategic orchestrated move to get their candidate elected here."

    Guatemalan Businessman Killed In Toledo, A Hundred Miles From Home
    A Guatemalan was killed in the Toledo District last night - and it's the first murder reported countrywide in 6 days. Around 5:00 yesterday, residents of Jalacte saw a man's body on the side of the road. His ID cards showed that he was Guatemalan, 42-year-old Carlos Pop Xol, a businessman from San Fernando Cha'al Alta Verapaz - which is about 100 miles from Jalacte.

    Coast Guardsman Makes Criminal Compliant Against Admiral
    7News has confirmed that a coast guardsman has made a criminal complaint against his boss, Admiral John Borland, which is now in the hands of the police. He is accusing the Admiral of verbal abuse and more seriously, of threatening words. Though we are aware of the specifics of the case, we are unable to share them with you because the Admiral hasn't been criminally charged, and - we could not reach him by phone or at his office. Nevertheless, the police have to treat the complaint seriously since the coast guard officer is requesting court action. We understand that his complaint has been forwarded to the Commissioner of Police. The Commissioner will then forward to the Ministry, where it will be assessed.

    FFB On Corozal Chairman: "Alleged Illegal Activities"
    Earlier this week, we told you about the shakeups in the FFB District Associations, where two chairman were given the boot - one by his executive in Toledo, the other, in Corozal, by the FFB headquarters in Belmopan. Today, the Federation put out a press release saying, quote, "due to alleged illegal activities by the Corozal Football Association's Chairman, Mr. Frank Sutherland was suspended until further notice." And what are those alleged illegal activities? Well, it seems that Mr. Sutherland was running a rent racket - or at least that's what the evidence points to. The FFB's letter to Sutherland on April 6th accuses him of the issuance of a fraudulent receipt and the misuse of Federation Moneys. The letter notes that he was given money directly to pay monthly rent for an office space for the Corozal Football Association.

    Lino Turns Up Dead: Was The Hunter Hunted?
    Tonight, a 45 year old hunter from Progresso Village is dead and his family is questioning the circumstances of his death. 45 year old Baltazar Lino was found dead after he went on a week long hunting trip near his farm a couple miles away from his village. But, after some days, his dogs returned but he didn't. That's when his family went looking for him and they found his decomposing body face down in a well yesterday. Police are investigating, but he family says that his neck had a telling scratch which they believe came from a jaguar:...

    Bail for Betancourt
    Last week we told you about San Pedro residents Jimell Paul Jex and Tracy Betancourt who were arrested and charged for possession of ammunition without a firearm license. Police searched their apartment and found 8 live 9mm rounds of ammunition. Jex was the only one present in the apartment when the search was conducted, and was arrested immediately. Police found and arrested Betancourt earlier this week.

    Teenager says He Picked Up Weed At The Wrong Time
    And today another teenager was in court for weed. 18 year old Lionel Lopez appeared in the Magistrate's Court where he was charged with the possession of about 1/10 of an ounce of cannabis. Lopez pled guilty to the charge but explained that it was all a mixup. He says that he was visiting his brother on Arlington drive when he picked something up off the street. He continued to say that before he realized that he had picked up an illicit substance, a mobile police unit came around the corner and busted him.

    A Bucket Of Ganja
    Ladyville Police today found two pounds of weed. They say the 930 grams were found in a bucket in an abandoned area on Marage Road in Ladyville around 11:00 this morning.

    Customs and Immigration Have Headaches At La Union
    "La Union" That's the Belize-Mexico border crossing in northwestern Belize that's becoming a real headache for customs and immigration. And that's because bus loads of Belizeans on excursions are flocking to the tiny village, so they can go across the river and shop for cheap items in Mexico. And When we say busloads, we mean as many as 18 buses at a time - coming from as far away as Dangriga. And all of them have to cross the Rio Hondo in little canoes! And that's probably why Customs put up this sign a few weeks ago. It says only persons form surrounding villages are permitted to shop in La Union. And that's also why about month ago, Immigration was turning people away. The Director of Immigration told us today that it's not an official border crossing, so they can stop persons form crossing there and so can customs.

    Cop Knocked Down Elderly Man
    Last night a police mobile unit was involved in a minor traffic accident in Southside Belize City. According to reports, the police vehicle was unable to drive down a section of East Collet Canal because of a clean-up effort being conducted at the time, so the driver began to reverse down the street. The vehicle didn't make it far before hitting, Karl Bradley, an elderly resident of West Collet Canal Street. Bradley's family told us that immediately after knocking him down, the police that were in the vehicle jumped out to assist and took him to the hospital with his son. After taking an X-ray doctors determined that Bradley received no threatening injuries, and discharged him. When we visited him today, Bradley was being cared for by his family. His left foot and ankle were swollen and much of his skin was peeled off. Bradley's family also told us that one police Sergeant who was in the patrol vehicle offered to pay for his medical expenses.

    City Council Tries and Tries Again With Sidewalk Furniture
    If you have walked along Albert Street in Belize City any time in the last few years you may have noticed several small squares cut out of the side walk. Those squares are what remains of several of the Belize City Council's attempts to beautify the street over the last decade and a half. Each square is supposed to hold a planter, or a cement pot with a palm tree planted in it. But, every time the City Council has tried to make use of these planters they have been the victim of vandalism and theft. Now, CitCo is getting ready to give it another try. We spoke to Councilor Michael Theus, who told why he is confident that the planters will be safe this time around... The re-addition of the planters is part of the City Council's project to rebrand the city as a major tourist destination.

    Calling All Creatives
    We always hear about IDB loans for major infrastructure and economic development projects, but what about the smaller micro-industries? Well, the IDB now says it wants to fund startups in the creative and cultural industries. They are focusing on Latin America, the Caribbean and South Florida and they are looking for innovative products or solution to improve lives in areas ranging from fashion, to music, to cooking. Cristina Nolasco of the IDB told us more from her office in Washington DC. WE ASKED HER WHO QUALIFIES:... THE open call will award prizes to startups that have those innovative products or solutions. Participating entrepreneurs must be over 18 years, and you can find a link to apply at 7newsbelize.com - https://blogs.iadb.org/kreatopolis/

    Garcia, The Guatemalan, Gone?
    And, finally, tonight, police have provided us with the picture of escaped prisoner 23 year old Henry Abel Calderon Garcia. As we told you last night, the Guatemalan Laborer who lives in Benque Viejo Town escaped when he was given a duty to go work outside the Benque Viejo Police Station on Wednesday. He was convicted for Possession of Control Drug and fined $805 dollars to be paid forthwith.

    Channel 5

    Guatemalan businessman murdered in Jalacte
    We start our newscast tonight with a murder deep in the south where a Guatemalan businessman was stabbed to death a stone’s throw away from the western border near the [...]

    Elena is B.N.T.U.’s leader after dramatic day in Corozal
    Senator for Trade Unions and Civil Society, Elena Smith, is president-elect of the Belize National Teachers’ Union. She defied the odds following allegations of tampering and interference in the executive [...]

    In Progresso, man found dead in well; did man or beast kill him?
    A family up north is grieving the untimely death of one of its own. The body of Baltazar Lino was retrieved from a four feet deep well in the outskirts [...]

    Union’s members demand retirement issue be settled by resolution
    The impromptu Council of Management meeting that delayed elections also forced the Belize National Teachers’ Union to postpone the hearing and voting on five resolutions presented to the Annual Convention. [...]

    Tax men accused of mishandling system of arrears and refunds for G.S.T.
    On Thursday we told you about the backlash against the Government’s dismissal of alleged manipulation of audits by senior management of the General Sales Tax Department conducted by lower level [...]

    Why Alex Sanker wants his Miss Universe painting back from Rebecca Rath
    The fury over photojournalist Tony Rath’s blog continues to burn like wildfire online, where responses to the five-part article are being posted to Facebook in the wake of the lengthy [...]

    So what actually happened to the painting?
    What became of the commissioned artwork remains unknown. Sanker maintains that the painting was deliberately set aside in favor of a Pen Cayetano piece and that he personally hand delivered [...]

    Did Joel Nagel’s “Global Access Conference” get him in trouble?
    Ambassador of Belize Joel Nagel remains accredited to the United Nations in Geneva, Switzerland and the International Atomic Energy Agency.  The U.S. attorney was also accredited to Austria and several [...]

    Monkey Bay Resort sued over U.S. student’s drowning
    A family in the U.S. is suing a local organization over the drowning death of their son. Back in February 2016, fourteen year old Tomari Jackson of Georgia, U.S.A., was [...]

    OCEANA reminds G.O.B. of plans for reef on anniversary of Deepwater disaster
    On Thursday marked seven years since the massive “Deepwater Horizon” oil spill in the Gulf of Mexico. In light of this day remembered largely by conservationists and those whose lives [...]

    Central Bank details reasons for liquidation of credit unions
    Central Bank Governor Joy Grant has responded to News Five via email following our story of Thursday night. The Bank in its capacity of registrar of credit unions is moving [...]

    F.C.D. says gold panning is now biggest threat to Chiquibul Forest
    Documents released by the F.C.D. chronicle the growth of gold-panning inside the inside the Chiquibul Forest, primarily its sharp spike in the southern portion of the forest in the last [...]

    Football Federation suspends Corozal football chief
    The Football Federation of Belize will hold its tenth Ordinary Congress in June. At that time members will be electing several outstanding positions on the executive, including a president. At [...]

    First storm of 2017, Arlene comes and goes
    Even though the hurricane season begins in June there has been some activity before the start of the season. Tropical Storm Arlene, the first named storm of the 2017 Atlantic [...]

    Rest of season should be quiet, say weather experts
    Over the past few days, we have been experiencing unseasonable rains.  According to forecaster Derrick Rudon, the 2017 hurricane season will be below average with fewer named storms and hurricanes. [...]

    LOVE FM

    BNTU Elects New President
    Yesterday, Senator Elena Smith emerged victorious as the President Elect of the Belize National Teachers Union. Smith went up against Troy Coleman of the Stann Creek Branch and Mario Mesh of the Corozal Rural Branch. The day’s proceeding was interrupted when the Council of Management held an emergency meeting to discuss reports of political interference. […]

    BNTU’s Newly Elected General Secretary Speaks of Work Ahead
    The other post contested was that of National Secretary. Vying for the post were Ruth Shoman of the Corozal Branch and Adelaida Guerra of the Belize Branch. Shoman emerged as the victor with 336 votes while Guerra garnered 328 votes. Shoman spoke to the media after the announcement was made. Luke Palacio is now the […]

    Jaguar Suspected to Be Responsible for Death of Villager
    Reports of a jaguar attacking a man are emerging from Progresso Village in the Corozal District. Forty five year old Baltazar Lino was found dead inside a four foot well located in the bushes. Lino would regularly visit his farm accompanied by his dogs but on Easter Sunday, one of his dogs returned without him. […]

    SSB Workers Protest Proposed Cuts
    The staff of Social Security Board countrywide who are union members engaged in a subtle protest to their management today after a proposal was made to have their benefits cut. According to our source, the proposal is to reduce the vacation and sick days for new staff members for which the Christian Workers Union, (CWU) […]

    Guat National Murdered in Southern Belize
    Toledo Police are investigating the murder of a businessman in that District. Police report that around 5:30 Thursday evening they responded to information of a person lying on the side of the road about half a mile from the junction of Jalacte Village. When they got there, authorities found 42-year-old Carlos Pop Xol, Guatemalan businessman […]

    Mayor Bradley on Business in Miramar, Florida
    Belize City Mayor Darrell Bradley is back in the county after travelling to South Florida. Bradley was invited by the mayors of Miramar City and Broward County to participate in a “Ease of Doing Business” Workshop. Bradley told us more. DARRELL BRADLEY “One of the things that we are actually trying to do is establish […]

    No Stipend for the BNTU Branch Executives
    While the ballots were being counted for the selection of BNTU’s president and general secretary, teachers who stayed behind had a say in the four resolutions tabled. The first resolution proposed was for the branch presidents, secretaries and treasures to receive a stipend from BNTU’s central office of three hundred, two hundred and one hundred […]

    Arlene Forms Ahead the Hurricane Season
    Two days ago we told you of the tropical depression that was formed outside the Atlantic Hurricane Season. While the National Hurricane Centre in Miami, Florida had noted that it would be a short-lived system, yesterday that depression was named Arlene and is now the first storm for the 2017 season. Tropical Storm Arlene is […]

    Music Ambassador Speaks on Miss Universe Controversy
    The 5-part blog uploaded to the internet by Tony Rath on the behind the scenes accounts of the Miss Belize/Universe event has stirred emotions from various circles of society and in some cases have enraged many Belizeans. His account to what transpired between the contestant, Rebecca Rath and the Pageant Director, Opal Enriquez has basically […]

    Belize’s Barrier Reef Remains in Danger of Losing Its Value
    Local environmental agencies have been speaking constantly on the dangers being posed to Belize’s Barrier Reef due to various factors. It is a case that has gotten international attention particularly since UNESCO had named it a World Heritage Site back in 1996. Thirteen years after receiving the title of a World Heritage Site, the Belize […]

    Amandala

    Killer of Indira “Princess” Thompson still at large
    As we go to press tonight, the man who brutally stabbed to death Indira “Princess” Thompson, a well-known woman of Belize City, on the grounds of the abandoned Bellevue Hotel on Southern Foreshore almost a week ago remains at large. Police have not yet released the identity of the man they believe committed the heinous act early last Friday morning. Information to police is that the 35-year-old woman was stabbed several times in her upper body and abdomen after she refused to have sex with her assailant. Carl Morter, with whom Thompson was reportedly living in a shack behind the decrepit hotel building, told police that he was returning to the shack when a Hispanic man exited, armed with a knife, and slashed his neck before running off.

    Coyoc brothers suffocate in Trial Farm well on Good Friday
    wo brothers of Trial Farm in Orange Walk, Jeovani Coyoc, 26, a taxi driver, and Isidoro Coyoc, 41, a farmer and tractor driver, were both laid to rest this Sunday in the wake of a tragedy which occurred at their family farm on Good Friday, when the men suffocated inside a 40-foot well. The incident occurred at about 12:30 on Friday, April 14, in the Goat Hill area of Tower Hill, Orange Walk. Police reported that at about 11:30 that morning, Jeovani lowered himself with a rope into the well, which contained about four feet of water, in order to clean the walls of the well. When Jeovani began to suffocate in the well, his brother, Isidoro, tried to get help and when he could not get an oxygen supply for him, he tried to rescue him alone. Sadly, both brothers fell unconscious inside the well, which had been out of use.

    Guat congressman wants Belize on their map
    It was confirmed this week that there is a lobby in official circles in Guatemala to have that country’s map for public and private use formally include Belize. Three weeks ago, news broke that Guatemala’s Ministry of Foreign Affairs had received a provocative proposal via one of its consultants, Edmundo Rene Urrutia Garcia, which made reference to suggestions that the country of Belize should be included in Guatemala’s map, apparently with annexation of the Sarstoon. Garcia also referred to a proposed public consultation on the oil exploration in Belize’s subsoil. Evidently, the suggestion did not end there. On Tuesday of this week, April 18, Guatemalan Congressman, Luis Fernando Montenegro Flores, tabled a proposal in Guatemala’s Congress, the country’s unicameral law-making body, to have Belize included on the map of Guatemala with a punctuated line carrying a notation that there is a territorial, insular and maritime dispute pending settlement, but furthermore, carrying a notation that the border with Belize is not defined.

    BNTU to Faber: We shall not be moved!!!
    Shortly after 6:00 this evening, candidates and counters at the national election of Belize’s most militant union – the Belize National Teachers’ Union (BNTU) – emerged from the counting room on the campus of Escuela Secundaria Tecnica Mexico in San Roman Village, Corozal, in a somber mood, walking towards the stage area, even as the word began to spread that Senator Elena Smith had captured the presidency, despite alleged political interference from the ruling United Democratic Party (UDP) to usurp control of the BNTU by installing their man at the helm. Smith was asked if she thinks the political interference is real. “We have seen certain things, certain texts going around, and we have heard of certain meetings, and so, there is a saying in Creole, ‘if it walks like a duck and quacks like a duck, it must be a duck,’” Smith answered, as the crowd around her erupted in shouts of “Solidarity Forever!”

    Taximan’s throat sliced by carjacker
    Ernesto Robinson, 57, a cab operator of Belize City, survived a horrifying attack on Tuesday night, when a man pretending to be looking for a taxi cut him on his face and neck with a knife, then made off with his taxi, crashing it on the highway. Robinson was taken to the Karl Heusner Memorial Hospital, where he was treated for the injuries he suffered during the jacking. He has since been released. Meanwhile, the youth believed to have been the carjacker has been apprehended after a hot pursuit by police. Robinson told police that at about 8:30 on Tuesday night, he was stopped at the junction of Western and Ordonez Avenues in Belize City by a man requesting his taxi service. The man got into the passenger seat behind him, and after Robinson drove off, the passenger took out a knife, cut Robinson on his face, and tried to slice his throat, forcing Robinson to stop and flee. The assailant then commandeered the taxi.

    David Jenkins, former Amandala photographer, passes at 83
    Amandala was saddened to receive news this week of the passing of David Emmanuel Alexander Jenkins, Sr., 83, who worked for several years as the newspaper’s photographer. Jenkins, Sr., passed away at home on Sunday, April 16, 2017, surrounded by his loved ones. He died from kidney failure. His daughter, Vanessa, said that her dad opted not to go on dialysis, saying, “I lived like a man; I will die like a man.” “Even in death, he taught us a lesson in bravery, character and staying true to himself,” she told us. Jenkins is also remembered by friends as the electrical engineer who for a one-time fee unscrambled television signals for poor Belizeans when access was limited to “pay per view” basis. According to Manolo Romero and Hector Silva, Jenkins opened access to television when it was limited to the wealthy.

    Dangriga sports stats
    The place to be this Saturday night to witness the biggest game in the NEBL will be Dangriga Ecumenical Basketball Auditorium. After our home team won on the road in the last game played in San Pedro against the Tiger Sharks, Griga Dream Ballers will prove it to their home fans that they always save the best for last, like a game this Saturday night against the Orange Walk Running Rebels. One victory against the O.W. Running Rebels in Griga this Saturday night, and our home team, Griga Dream Ballers clinch the playoff. All Dangriga fans and surrounding villages are invited to this big match-up this Saturday night – Griga Dream Ballers vs Orange Walk Running Rebels.

    NEBL “In the Paint”
    There is a bundle of games scheduled to be played in Week 15 of the 2017 NEBL Championship, which, for all intents and purposes, will determine who goes fishing, or who will be invited to the big dance. The (8-3) San Pedro Tiger Sharks and the (7-3) Belmopan Bandits have already clinched spots to the big dance, while tonight’s match-up between the (3-6)’s Orange Walk Running Rebels and defending champs Smart Hurricanes at the Orange Walk Multi-Purpose Center will more than likely take one of these teams off life-support system and gently put it to sleep. Whatever the outcome of tonight’s game, any one of these teams could be nominated for league’s biggest disappointment. You asked, why do we say this? Both rosters are blessed with some of Belize’s brightest talent; but for some unknown reason, none could muster any sort of consistency on a night-in night-out basis, both from an offensive and defensive perspective. The Running Rebels won the first meeting by the score of 86-84 on the road; however, the Hurricanes have shown a little life of late; but again, it may be just a case of … too little too late.

    Holy Saturday Cross Country Cycling Classic 2017 finishers
    According to an official release on Monday, April 17, 78 cyclists started in this year’s Holy Saturday Cross Country, and 41 completed the 140 mile journey, of which 38 finished within the official time limit, which is not more than 30 minutes after the first place finisher. Here is the list of those 38 within the time limit: 1st place (GUA) Alejandro Padilla Miranda (Guatemalan National Team, 5:35:05); 2nd (USA) Patrick Raines (Ken’s Bike Shop, 5:53:26); 3rd (GUA) Alder Torres (Guatemalan National Team, 5:53:28); 4th Ron Vasquez (Smart/C-Ray Western Spirit, 5:55:08); 5th Brandon Cattouse (Smart/C-Ray Western Spirit, 5:58:42); 6th (USA) Bill Elliston (Elliston Coaching, 5:58:44); 7th Oscar Quiros, Jr. (Smart/C-Ray Western Spirit, 6:00:03);

    The significance of the BNTU election
    After the December 1984 general election defeat of the People’s United Party (PUP), Assad Shoman, the socialist Health Minister of the PUP during its 1979 to 1984 term of office, broke with the PUP and exited electoral politics. Said Musa, the PUP’s Education Minister during the aforementioned 1979 to 1984 PUP term, who had been Shoman’s loyal ally, began to move into a relationship with two neoliberal second-generation PUP leaders – Ralph Fonseca and Glenn Godfrey. But for more than a decade, Mr. Musa’s change in philosophy took place beneath the radar. When he became PUP Leader in 1996 and then Prime Minister in 1998, Mr. Musa was still enjoying credibility amongst social justice Belizeans. He finally began to lose such credibility in August of 2004.

    From the Publisher
    Until I was 7 years old, which I became in 1954, I grew up on the southern side of Church Street in Southside Belize City, three or four houses down from what used to be the center of cycling in those days – a bicycle shop one or two houses down from Albert Street, across from the Government Printers. My late uncle was a total cycling aficionado. I grew up with him as my hero. Cycling combined elements of life which he loved – the outdoors, athletic competition, and gambling. A close friend of the four-time Crosscountry champion, Aston Gill, who is still alive in New York City, my uncle had ridden a couple Crosscountries himself in the late 1940s, his highest finish being fourth or fifth. Sometime in 1954, I moved to West Canal Street, near Bolton Bridge and the junction with Regent Street West. Around 1955, my uncle went to study electrical technology in Puerto Rico, but I know that in the late 1950s and early 1960s, his cycling “road dog” was Duncan Vernon, who won two or three Crosscountries.

    Shifting sphere
    A lot of Caribbean people seem to be concerned about President Donald Trump being president of the most powerful country in the world, the United States of America (US). He is perceived as a racist and an anti-immigrant president. Millions of Caribbean nationals reside in the United States and the concerns are reasonable. I am not concerned about that because that was a decision that could only have been made by US citizens. I see a more serious threat; that is, an unstable US economy. After the 1944 Bretton Woods Conference, the US dollar became the global reserve currency and it was reinforced in 1975, when OPEC decided that oil must be purchased in US dollars. Every Central Bank in the region has US dollars as their reserve currency. The US is the Caribbean’s number one trading partner and usually the biggest contributor to our tourism industry, so their economy directly affects us.

    Dear Mr. Hector Zapata and my Garifuna people
    The idea of forming a Garifuna nation existed centuries ago before our people were removed by the British from our original homeland, Yurumein, now known as Saint Vincent & The Grenadines in 1797. It is not proper for a Garifuna individual or group to say that they founded the Garifuna nation. As an organization to mobilize our people into action, this new organization is being formed to facilitate this process and it will take time for our people to buy into this new concept. In my opinion, there is no other way but this way and eventually it will prevail. Why? Because (1) We have not gotten over our unlawful removal from our homeland, “Yurumein”; (2) The atrocities and genocide committed against our people by the French, British and now in some of the countries where we currently live, warrant action to be brought against all of them; and (3) Many of us are now willing to seek justice on behalf of our people, because moving from one country to another has not made our lives any better. Nothing like your home!

    Cross Country Classic
    Dear Editor, In the normal course statecraft is extremely complex as there are significant forces at play, seen and unseen, attempting to shape a country’s domestic as well as foreign policy. Belize’s diplomatic space is made even more complex because of the unfounded Guatemalan claim. There is no other country in the world that is being claimed in its entirety by a neighbouring state. Confronted with such a scenario we would be doing our country a great service by dissecting anything done by Guatemala or by Guatemalan nationals. Guatemala’s stated intent is to “recover” Belize and therefore we should strive to understand how each of their actions relates to such a stated intent. In the practice of statecraft things are seldom what they seem.

    On toxic agricultural products
    Dear Editor, We are so very concerned about our children’s health, yet we readily feed them foods that we know are laden with poisonous pesticides. The big agro-chemical companies make toxic chemicals derived from petroleum and coal to kill weeds and bugs. Petroleum and coal come from what has been dead for millions of years. We dig it up and burn it and what do we get? Death! And we make toxic agricultural products from them and what do we get? Death to wildlife, water, air, soil, food… increased cancers, birth defects, autoimmune diseases, etc. We need to be proactive and tell the politicians and the corporations to either move over, or make the positive shift toward sanity when it comes to agriculture.

    Op-Ed
    This is a moment in time in Belize when Labor is where the power is. I don’t mean merely that the unions (at least one) can be depended upon to successfully take on government on workers’ rights, economic issues, corruption or issues of good governance. I mean that this moment is bursting with potential for radical political change in Belize, an opportunity that was allowed to slip by in 2005 when the Belize National Teachers Union went on strike, joining other organizations in a campaign against the then PUP government. If there ever were a moment for clear, rational thinking, for not being satisfied with taking to the streets every time a wayward government needs to be put in check, for bringing an end to the UDP-PUP merry-go-round, this is it.

    Holy Saturday Cross Country 2017
    Why are we disappointed? As the 89th running of the Annual Holy Saturday Cross Country Classic got underway at 6:00 o’clock on Saturday morning, April 15, a total of 78 cyclists took to the start line. The numbers have decreased significantly from the year 2007, when we saw the largest field ever of 135 participants at the start line. Of the 78 cyclists, 63 were Belizeans and 15 foreigners – 7 Americans, 5 Mexicans and 3 Guatemalans (including the defending champion from Guatemala). These guys would attempt to make their way from Belize City to San Ignacio and back to Belize City via the George Price Highway, and the first person to cross the finish line would be crowned the new champion. For years, as far back as I’ve been involved in cycling, and even before my days, the Belizean public have been major cycling fans … or at least around Cross Country time. People get all excited coming onto the Easter holidays, and plan their vacation to begin after the Cross Country race. Even Belizeans living abroad are sure to tune in and keep up with the action on Holy Saturday. We hear all the cycling chatter, and get all the remarks of the disappointment if a Belizean shouldn’t win. Well, this is one of those years; the Belizean cycling fans are again devastated. They are heartbroken, in fact; not only that a foreigner won, but a Guatemalan.

    POVERTY IS HAZARDOUS TO YOUR HEALTH
    Hello everyone. Did you know that how much money you make determines the quality of health care you receive (if any), and how long you may live? Wealth inequality and the perception of wealth inequality are two different things. Thus, if you’re poor or low-to middle-income, poverty is hazardous to your health. Here are some hard stats: The top 1% wealthy in America makes 380 times in one hour more than what the average worker in a CEO’s company makes in a whole month (I’m not talking about the janitor, but the average worker in his company). That same 1% owns half (50%) of all of the country’s stocks, bonds, and mutual funds, and owns 40% of ALL of America’s wealth. On that same chart, the poor and the middle-income people have only 7% of the nation’s wealth between them, even though they make up 80% of the country’s population. The rest of the 20% of the population comprises the rich, the very rich, and that 1% wealthy we spoke about. Together, they control most of the country’s wealth (minus the paltry 7% distributed to the poor and middle income). Now, I’m using the U.S. as an example; however, global economists will tell you that the poverty lines and the distribution of wealth may be worse, not just in second and third world poverty-stricken countries, but even throughout many parts of Europe.

    Cross Country 2017 commentary & analysis
    There is, and can only be, one Holy Saturday Cross Country Cycling Classic. I say this because I hear many people saying, “Let’s have one with the foreigners and one without.” If you asked all the cyclists in Belize, I bet that almost 100% would vote for foreign participation. Any Belizean who won a Cross Country without the foreigners would be ridiculed, and would himself feel empty. Local riders want to compete and beat the foreigners. That Pandora’s Box has been opened and can’t be closed. Now, let me give you some insight from someone who has been in this sport from 1980, and who is on the road training daily with the Belizeans. First of all, the foreign competition invited this year was sub-par to the riders we have invited in the past. Remember, only the Cycling Federation can invite FOREIGNERS, and they do a good job ensuring that the playing field is level by no longer inviting the TOP QUALITY RIDERS. These riders they invite SHOULD be beaten.

    First depression for 2017 forms in Central Atlantic, ahead of season which calls for 11 to 12 named storms and 4 to 6 hurricanes
    Meteorologists are today confirming that the very first Atlantic system for 2017 has formed as a subtropical system in the Central Atlantic, the first April system since 2003 – a span of 14 years. Yesterday, researchers at the Colorado State University issued their April forecast, which calls for 11 named storms this year, 4 hurricanes and two major hurricanes—a slightly below average year, while the Weather Channel’s forecast is for a seasonal average of 12 named storms, 6 hurricanes and 2 major hurricanes. “We anticipate a below-average probability for major hurricanes making landfall along the United States coastline and in the Caribbean. As is the case with all hurricane seasons, coastal residents are reminded that it only takes one hurricane making landfall to make it an active season for them,” the CSU’s Philip J. Klotzbach and Michael M. Bell said in releasing their forecast.

    The Reporter

    Man stabbed to death
    On Thursday evening the body of 42 year-old Carlos Pop Xol was found lying beside the Southern highway, about half a mile from the Jalacte village junction. It had several stab and cut wounds. The discovery was made by police at 5:30 p.m., on April […]

    Guatemalan prisoner escapes
    Benque Viejo police are reporting the escape of a prisoner from at around 2:40 p.m., on Wednesday April 19. The public is advised to be vigilant and on the lookout for 23 year-old, Guatemalan National, Henry Abel Calderon Garcia. Garcia is said to have absconded […]

    Police woman charged for theft, caught on camera
    A woman police constable attached to the San Ignacio police division has been placed on interdiction and charged with ‘theft’ after she was allegedly caught on camera stealing money from a Chinese business establishment. Ann Marie Anthony was charged with stealing four $50 notes from […]

    San Pedro man charged for rape
    A 36-year-old San Pedro man, Eldon Williams, has been charged with  rape after he allegedly assaulted a sleeping 17 year-old girl early Sunday morning. The girl, accompanied by her mother, visited the San Pedro police station later that same morning. She told police that while […]

    Highway bandit caught by cops
    Belize City police have charged a San Ignacio man after he allegedly held up a Belize City taximan at knife point and carjacked him on Tuesday night. Police have confirmed that Shawn Rodriguez, 22, was charged for ‘robbery’ and ‘use of deadly means of harm’ […]

    Guatemalan congress rejects proposal to include Belize on official map
    Guatemala’s congress has voted against incorporating Belize to reflect as being a part of their territory on their official map, the Prensa Libre newspaper of Guatemala has reported.   The newspaper article, posted online on Tuesday reports that the congress “rejected a resolution to […]

    Ministry of Works upgrades/repairs major highways
    Motorists using the various highways might encounter “go-slow” signage as they approach certain sections, cautioning them about repairs or loose gravel on the road.  The caution signs are visible on highways across the country, as the Ministry of Works conducts major repairs and upgrades […]

    Belize’s Ombudsman chairs Human Rights session in Panama
    The Ombudsman of Belize, Lionel Arzu, recently chaired a successful session of the Central America Council of Human Rights Defenders and Ombudsmen in Panama City.   The extraordinary session was hosted on April 6 and 7 2017,  in order to formulate national and regional strategies to […]

    GOB not taking budgeting seriously says NGOs
    The Belize Network of Non-Governmental Organizations (BNN) is accusing the Government of Belize of making mockery of the national budget exercise through its $1 million honorarium to teachers that didn’t strike.   The BNN joined the Belize Chamber of Commerce and Industry (BCCI) and the […]

    Gold-panning: Big problem in Chiquibul
    Gold-panning has become an incessant problem and the most impactful threat to the Chiquibul Forest Reserve, says the Friends for Conservation and Development (FCD).  The organization’s conclusion comes after a series of arrests in the nature reserve, at riverbanks where the activity can […]

    CitCo collecting tires to fight Monkey River beach erosion
    The Belize City Council is collecting tires to assist residents in Monkey River Village with mitigating the ongoing beach erosion plaguing the community.   City Councilor Phillip Willoughby, explained that the council is reaching out to tire shops, garages, bus owners, and the pubic at large […]

    Interpol seeks six most wanted Belizeans
    Six Belizeans were recently named among 257 Caribbean nationals on Interpol’s most wanted list.   The majority of accused criminals on the list were from the Dominican Republic with 160, followed by Jamaica with 54, and the Bahamas, Suriname and Guyana with eight each. Haiti had […]

    Editorial
    For the two years since his transfer to Belize  City as the Officer in Charge of Eastern Division,  Assistant Commissioner  of Police Chester Williams has worked tirelessly with the gangs  and their leaders, to reduce street violence. It has been frustrating work. The last three months have been the bloodiest […]

    Elena Smith is new BNTU President
    Elena Smith is the new President of the Belize National Teachers Union (BNTU) following elections on Thursday afternoon, despite allegations that government tried to influence union voting against Smith. Smith won the election by a landslide on Thursday, April 20, beating out BNTU Corozal President, […]

    Fake cops nabbed!
    Two fake cops are in hot water after actual police officers noticed something unusual about the pair of impersonators, whose uniforms were oversized and  untidy. One officer sported an unusual red belt. Precinct IV police noticed the pair looking suspicious near Public’s Supermarket on the […]

    GOB denies reports of GST double standard
    The Government of Belize (GOB) has denied a claim made by one of its General Sales Tax (GST) auditors that it is using different methods to manipulate the calculations for taxes on businesses. The release is in response to a leaked letter which bears the […]

    Breaking Belize NewsPJ

    Rhymes with Bagel
    ECI Development/Joel Nagel organized a spiel/promotion for an “Annual Global Access Asset Protection & Investment Conference” on September 18 ~ 24, 2016 in Vienna, Austria. Information on this conference was put out by Joel Nagel, who at the time was the Ambassador of Belize to Austria and is publicly available at http://info.ecidevelopment.com/eci-vienna-promo-april-2016-lp-2. According to ECI’s website, ECI is a real estate developer committed to building people-centered, vibrant communities in Latin America with North American quality infrastructure and services.

    NGO calls on GOB to protect the reef
    The Belize Coalition to Save our natural heritage issued a release today stating that on the seventh anniversary of one of the worse environmental disasters in history—British Petroleum’s oil spill in the Gulf of Mexico—the Belize Coalition to Save Our Natural Heritage restates its position that the Belize Barrier Reef Reserve System must be meaningfully protected and safeguarded from the inherent dangers of offshore oil. According to the Coalition, in December 2015, the Government of Belize announced its intention to ban offshore oil activity along the reef and within World Heritage Sites and within a one kilometre “buffer” area.

    Youth Resilience and Inclusive Social Empowerment project to be launched
    The Ministry of Human Development, Social Transformation and Poverty Alleviation will launch the Youth Resilience and Inclusive Social Empowerment (Youth RISE) Project on Wednesday, April 26, at Dellille Academy School in Dangriga Town at 9 a.m. The Government of Belize has secured financing from the Caribbean Development Bank (CDB) to expand the Youth and Community Transformation (YCT) Project to at-risk communities in Dangriga and San Ignacio/Santa Elena Towns.

    Feel the Change campaign to be launched
    The National Climate Change Office (NCCO), in partnership with the United Nations Development Programme’s (UNDP) Japan-Caribbean Climate Change Partnership (J-CCCP) will launch a climate change awareness campaign on Wednesday, April 26, at the Ramada Princess Hotel in Belize City at 9 a.m. The campaign was developed based on the results of a Climate Change Knowledge, Attitudes and Practices survey conducted in several communities across Belize last year.

    Readers are Leaders – Book Week 2017
    Every year, in commemoration of World Book and Copyright Day on April 23rd, the Belize Book Industry Association (BBIA) organizes Book Week. This year, the programme will commence at 9:00 a.m. on Friday, April 28 at the Punta Gorda Central Park and will continue at the Cayo Welcome Center in San Ignacio on April 29th from 9:00 a.m to 3:00 p.m. The theme for this year is “READERS ARE LEADERS!”

    “Return the painting,” artist tells Ms. Belize
    Veteran painter Alex Sanker is calling on Ms. Belize, Rebecca Rath, to return the painting he did for her to give as the national gift at the 2017 Ms. Universe pageant. Sanker explained that he was informed that Rath never gave the painting as she was supposed to, but rather gave a piece painted by Penn Cayetano. Sanker maintains that the piece has significance both to Belize and himself and should be returned since it was not used for its intended purpose.

    Belizean cyclist seeks sponsorship for race in Europe
    Belmopan cyclist, 27-year-old Tariq Aguilar-Cano was born and raised in the capital city and fell love with the sport of cycling at the age of 11. Cano’s passion for the sport earned him the distinction of being one of the best junior All Around Cyclist of his time, winning his first race, King of the Hills Classic, at the age of 15 in a solo match. He then went on to win numerous races which gave him the opportunity to represent Belize in Guatemala, Cuba and the United States in an honorable fashion. Cano was also featured on the 2013 Belize Apprentice TV show, which showcased his capability to work hard on various levels. Following his success, he was later employed at the Belize Bank as a marketing officer for credit card and sale.

    2017 Hurricane Season off to early start
    The Hurricane season normally kicks off on June 1 and ends in November. However, the 2017 Hurricane season is off to an early start. Forty days before the official season begins, a tropical storm has formed in the North Central Atlantic Ocean. The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration satellite provided forecasters with a look at the storm, swirling far from land areas. Tropical storm Arlene formed yesterday as Tropical Depression one and was strengthened into a tropical storm.

    Mount Carmel Credit Union being liquidated, members in limbo
    The Central Bank of Belize has not given any indication on what it will do about hundreds of customers affected by the liquidation of Mount Carmel Credit Union. The CBB announced, at the start of April, that Mount Carmel, based in Bemque Viejo del Carmen, would be one of four credit unions liquidated under Section 69 of the Credit Unions Act, Chapter 314 of the Laws of Belize.

    Trial Farm, San Pedro and San Jose get new pre-school buildings
    The Government of Belize in collaboration with the European Union (EU) will inaugurate three pre-schools in the Orange Walk and Corozal Districts on Tuesday, 25th April, at 1:30 p.m on the compound of the Trial Farm Government Primary School, Trial Farm Village, Orange Walk District. The three pre-schools were constructed with financing from the EU and the Government of Belize under the Accompanying Measures for Sugar (AMS) 2012 programme, at a cost of 600,000 Euros or BZD $1,140,000.

    Guatemalan man stabbed to death in Jalacte
    According to police reports, yesterday around 5:30 p.m., police responded to information of a person lying on the side of the road about half mile from the junction of Jalacte Village, Toledo. Police went to the area and observed Carlos Pop Xol, 42, a Guatemalan businessman of San Fernando Cha’al Alta Verapaz, Guatemala lying motionless and apparently dead.

    Blogs

    Take home that Belizean experience with a memorable souvenir!
    You came to Belize for the vacation of a lifetime, looking forward to all the incredible fun to be had. You fall in love with its landscape, people, culture, food and then, before you know it, it’s over. How can you possibly extend your Belize experience back home? How can your vacation last a little longer? Well, by picking up some authentic Belizean made goods! So what can you take? This question all depends on what you like. One of the most common “take-back-home” products made in Belize has to be a bottle of Marie Sharp’s pepper sauce – we Belizeans love our spice, and Marie Sharp has just the right kick. Chances are you saw (and sampled) it at pretty much every restaurant you ate at, and hopefully the spice-meter didn’t keep you from trying it! Grab a few bottles and share that taste of Belize with friends back home, and be sure to keep some for yourself! If you close your eyes, you could almost pretend you’re at your favourite restaurant in Belize again.

    Trash on North Ambergris Caye – When Do We Say Enough Is Enough?
    Until 2014/2015, almost everyone who traveled north – especially farther than a mile or two – went by boat. The road was in AWFUL…little more than a mud pit in parts…and most tourists and guests saw their resorts and rental homes for the first time when they arrived at the dock. But now (and for the last 2 years), the point of entry – the front entrance to northern Ambergris Caye resorts is the road. What used to be out back…the “back yard”…”the bush” is now where new guests form their first impressions. Whether they are arriving in the resort van or in a golf cart rental of their own – the very first impressions of our gorgeous island are gained while driving on the road. AND, I don’t know the nice way to say this so I will just say it: The road north looks like a giant garbage dump. The garbage and litter up north is GETTING WORSE. Here is a wildlife experience I had yesterday while in my golfcart. On the road. Just next to a gorgeous resort’s entrance. What a pretty ibis ;<

    Kayak, Windsurf, and Participate in Water Sports in Belize
    Islands and coves with sheltered bays and lagoons filled with crystal clear water are ideal for gentle water sports like sea kayaking and stand up paddling (a sport where participants stand upright on a device similar to a surfboard). The proximity of many islands to one another on the Belize Barrier Reef make sea kayaking a popular activity as participants can easily and safely “island hop” from one to the other or explore the shoreline of bigger destinations like Ambergris Caye. Steady breezes on the Caribbean are ideal for more adventurous water sports including windsurfing and kite surfing, especially in and around Ambergris Caye, Caye Caulker, and off the coast of Punta Gorda in southern Belize. In other offshore locations, water skiing and riding jet skis are popular choices while canoeing and white water rafting can be enjoyed on inland waterways like the Mopan and Macal Rivers. Wear lots of sunscreen, and be prepared to have the time of your life as you enjoy a bevy of fun and exciting water sports on the lagoons, bays, coves, rivers, and offshore islands of Belize.

    Cockscomb Basin Wildlife Sanctuary
    Imagine Noah’s Ark after the flood, only thousands of creatures exit the ark rather than just two of each species. This 250,000 acre wonderland is also richly endowed with breathtaking waterfalls, mountains, nature trails and rivers, creating the perfect environment for species to thrive in harmony. As the only jaguar reserve on the planet, these cats keep company with hundreds of neo-tropical birds, other wildcats, deer, tapir, reptiles, insects, amphibians and all manner of other sanctuary inhabitants. You might not see all of them but you could spot their tracks on trails and river banks. The dirt road from the Southern Highway extends for six miles isn’t paved, so if you drive, you’ll need a car capable of tackling rugged terrain. Use public transport if you can. Buses from Belize City and Dangriga Town get you to Punta Gorda Town and the Maya Village Center, then hike into the park. If you’re coming from a distance, grab a Maya Island Air or Tropic Air flight for the 20-minute trip to Dangriga. Taxis and tour companies are also viable options.

    National Aquaculture Sector Overview
    Aquaculture in Belize formally began in 1982 with the development of ten acres (4 ha) of experimental ponds by a private company, in the southern part of the Country. Since that time, the industry has developed rapidly and has become firmly established as a significant contributor to the Belizean economy in terms of foreign exchange earnings, income generation, employment, nutrition, and food security. In Belize, the aquaculture industry is primarily based on the production of the whiteleg shrimp (Penaeus vannamei). Aquaculture in Belize has been expanding in volume and value more rapidly than capture fishery production, terrestrial livestock production and other agro-production activities. The growth performance of this aspect of the sector is reflected in the 160 percent annual increase in the production volume of farmed shrimp over the last decade. The export production and revenues have increased from 1.2 million pounds (545.4 tons) and Bz$ 10.4 million (US$ 5.2 million) respectively in 1995 to 16.86 million pounds (7 664 tons) and Bz$ 84.28 million (US$ 42.14 million) respectively in 2004. The contribution of Fisheries, including aquaculture to GDP was five percent for 2003. Export earnings for aquatic products were Bz$ 107 million (US$ 53.5 million) in 2004. This was second only to Sugar Cane which earned Bz$ 114 million.

    Human Rights in Belize – Rights of the Child
    Recalling all its previous resolutions on the rights of the child, in particular its resolution 54/149 of 17 December 1999, in which it strongly supported the work of the open-ended inter-sessional working groups and urged them to finalize their work before the tenth anniversary of the entry into force of the Convention on the Rights of the Child,(1) Expressing its appreciation to the Commission on Human Rights for having finalized the texts of the two optional protocols to the Convention on the Rights of the Child on the involvement of children in armed conflict and on the sale of children, child prostitution and child pornography, Conscious of the tenth anniversaries, in the year 2000, of the World Summit for Children and the entry into force of the Convention on the Rights of the Child and of the symbolic and practical importance of the adoption of the two optional protocols to the Convention on the Rights of the Child before the special session of the General Assembly for the follow-up to the World Summit for Children, to be convened in 2001,

    WHY BELIZE?
    Gorgeous tropical islands, exotic nature, and ancient Maya cities await in this Central American paradise. Blessed with beautiful biodiversity, Belize is a mecca for travelers who love to explore the great outdoors. Whether you prefer to marvel at the kaleidoscope of marine flora and fauna of the Belize Barrier Reef or explore the jungles and parks of the mainland in search of birds and wildlife, Belize has something for everyone. Add in a healthy dose of cultural diversity and a rich Maya heritage, and it's easy to see why Belize is rapidly becoming a top travel destination. Perhaps the most iconic landscape in Belize is its vast Caribbean coastline. Home to beautiful sugar sand beaches, coral reefs, and picture postcard perfect islands, there's no doubt that Belize has much to offer. Top spots include snorkeling off the island of Ambergris Caye, spotting nurse sharks and stingrays at the Hol Chan Marine Reserve, windsurfing at Caye Caulker, and diving more than 400 feet into the subterranean caverns of the Belize Blue Hole.

    International Sourcesizz

    Two Caribbean destinations in latest top 20 list of places to honeymoon
    To help newlyweds, and the engaged, better navigate the honeymoon destination market, Flight Network, the largest travel agency that is both owned and operated in Canada, has spent months researching and interviewing the best of the best to curate the ultimate list of top 20 luxury honeymoon destinations, which includes two Caribbean resorts. San Pedro is a slice of paradise facing the Caribbean Sea. Home to the world’s second largest barrier reef, the Pedro Barrier Reef, is a world treasure you will get to enjoy every day you spend there. When not snorkeling or diving though, you’ll find yourself kicking back under a palm or exploring the old fishing village turned town that’s said to inspire the song, ‘La Isla Bonita’. San Pedro is also incredibly close to the world-famous Mayan ruins, a truly special place to explore.

    Georgia mother sues school district after son dies on a class trip in Belize: 'He was everything to me'
    One mother from Georgia is taking legal action after her 14-year-old son died while on a class trip to Belize last year, and is warning other parents to "trust no one" when it comes to sending your children on international school trips. Tomari Jackson, 14, was on a trip with his North Cobb High School Biology class last February in Belize when he died after drowning in a river during a chaperoned excursion. More than a year after her son's death, Forbes received package in the mail that contained a video from a small camera her son had strapped to his head at the time that he died. The U.S. State Department had sent the package of Tomari's belongings to her after receiving it from Monkey Bay Sanctuary, where he was staying at in Belize.

    The Top 10 Things to Do in Belize
    When it comes to choosing a place for your Caribbean vacation, Belize might not be at the top of your list — there are more popular Central American and Caribbean destinations, after all. However, what makes Belize a truly amazing holiday spot is its diversity in both terrain and activities. The country’s eastern side provides the azure blue waters that make the Caribbean such an in-demand destination, as well as the second largest coral reef system in the world. On the west side, you’ll find lush rainforests, historic Mayan ruins and many different species of exotic wildlife. Tourism is continuously expanding in this small, but lovely, country, as Belize had the fastest growth of any tourism destination in the last year, with an overall growth of 13% in the last two decades. Aside from its growing popularity, here are the top 10 reasons why you should visit Belize this year.

    Video of Cobb teen drowning in Belize released on ‘GMA’
    A video of a 14-year-old boy drowning within feet of fellow North Cobb High School students on a school trip in Belize was shown during a “Good “Morning America” segment Friday. Tomari Jackson’s mother Adell Forbes — who is suing the school district along with the chaperones and the trip organizer — spoke about watching the February 2016 video. “Now I’m able to fill in the gaps and see for myself what happened,” she told GMA, which did not show viewers the actual drowning. Forbes’ attorneys showed a room of reporters the video a week ago but chose not to release it then, one of the reasons being that the mother wasn’t ready to see the footage on air. After the program aired Friday, Forbes’ attorneys released to media a copy of the drowning video, which is shot from a camera strapped to her son’s head.

    U.S. Troops Visit Children’s Home in Belize
    Not even inclement weather was able to put a damper on the spirits of the children living at the Liberty Children’s Home here, as U.S. service members visited, to lend a helping hand, April 18. The soldiers’ visit is was part of the Beyond the Horizon 2017 task force. Service members spent their day removing safety hazards from the property, playing a variety of games with the children and providing basic medical examinations. “There was a low-hanging tree over one of the housing units and we decided to cut it down and get it out of the way,” said Army Spc. Rudy Sneed, a shower and laundry specialist with the 452nd Quartermaster Company, an Army Reserve unit based in Scottsdale, Arizona. “We were afraid the tree might fall and cause serious damage to the property.”

    In Belize, local stewardship key to marine conservation
    The reef was in plain sight, a majestic view with sandy white beaches surrounding cayes with magnificent frigate birds and booby birds flying overhead at Halfmoon Caye Natural Monument. I was eager to put on my diving gear and see the wonders of the 186-mile-long Belize Barrier Reef, a UNESCO World Heritage Site. Colorful coral reefs, whale sharks, turtles, and hundreds of cubera snappers aggregating three days before full moon at the Gladden Spit Spawning Aggregation Site in Belize. It was May 2002, and I was participating along with a research team to collect data on Nassau Grouper abundance and distribution which would inform the declaration of eleven Nassau Grouper Spawning Aggregation Sites. Our ocean is rich in biodiversity and is a crucial carbon sink. Coastal wetlands, mangroves and coral reefs support a diverse array of marine life. According to a recent economic study of the Belize Barrier Reef, the estimated services derived for tourism and livelihoods is US$559 million per year with a population of 380,010 people. A healthy reef ensures healthy people and a resilient country. Two decades ago, fisherfolk were adamantly opposed to the designation of marine protected areas. However, the tide is shifting to a more inclusive and participatory co-management approach where communities are empowered to protect, conserve and utilize the seascape resources in a sustainable manner in partnership with regulatory government agencies (Forest and Fisheries Departments).

    8 endangered sites to see now
    (CNN)Florida manatees swim and sleep in the sunshine and golden-brown panthers prowl the shady forests at Everglades National Park. A swampy wilderness of gnarled cypress stands and waving sawgrass just beyond Miami's suburbs, this 1.5 million-acre UNESCO World Heritage Site can seem timeless. But rising sea levels have spiked the fresh groundwater beneath the Everglades with salt, and plants and wildlife must quickly adapt to new conditions to survive. That's why the Everglades are among the eight World Heritage Sites in the Americas included in UNESCO's list of "World Heritage in Danger," an exclusive club of 55 destinations, dominated by war-torn countries and terrorist hotspots. Stretching nearly the entire length of Belize's Caribbean coast, this massive reef system is the largest in the Northern Hemisphere, a chain of coral and sand that's visible from the International Space Station. From water level, a detailed world comes into focus. Hundreds of cayes lie just above the surface, a constellation of mangrove and sand islands with a coral foundation, and the undersea landscape is remarkably varied.

    Videos

  • Belize It Honeymoon, 5.5min. Welcome to our 9 day honeymoon to Belize in 5 minutes. Enjoy. We sure did. :)

  • BELIZE 2017 Fun Diving, 12min. Nice scuba diving video.

  • Tamarind Juice day, 1min. We stop on the side to pick some tamarind and made tamarind juice! :) This was perfect for an extremely hot and humid day.

  • Belize 2017, 7.5min. Wilcoxon Honeymoon. April 9-15, 2017. Coco Plum Island Resort.

  • Labour Union Senator Elena Smith was elected by an overwhelming majority as the next National Presid, 10min.

  • NEBL: Running Rebels vs Hurricanes, 1hr25min.

  • Belize, 4min. Unbelizeable trip !!!!! 2017

  • Fraser Valley Adventist Academy Mission Trip 2017, 6min. Listen to the life-changing stories of the students of Fraser Valley Adventist Academy as they recall their Mission Trip to Belize.

  • BELIZE 2017, 2.5min. Well here's a glimpse into my spring break(: hope y'all like it!

  • Beach Profiling | University of Belize, 10min.

    April 21, 2017


    FOR TODAY'S BELIZE WEATHER, CLICK HERE

    Click for our Daily Tropical Weather Report.

    Specials and Events

    Last night's TV news on Channel 7, Channel 5, LOVETV, PGTV, West Vision (Cayo) and CTV 3. Also with the most recent Open Your Eyes, and other specials


    The San Pedro Sun

    Linden Kelly to be tried for Elton Polonio’s murder
    San Pedro resident Linden Kelly will officially go on trial for the September 2016 murder of Elton Polonio. Kelly appeared before Chief Magistrate Anne Marie Smith for a preliminary inquiry on Wednesday, April 19th. At the end of the hearing, Kelly committed to stand trial in the Supreme Court for the murder of Polonio. Details of the incident once again revealed that Polonio was killed inside a warehouse on the island in an altercation with Kelly. During his appearance at the court, Kelly had no witnesses to call on his behalf, while Prosecutor Corporal Kennard Clark continues to rely on several witnesses’ statements and the official report from the police as well. According to the investigation, there is a recorded interview in which Kelly admitted to stabbing Polonio with a knife used to fillet fish.

    Preseason weather system develops in Atlantic Ocean
    The Atlantic hurricane season officially begins on June 1st and lasts through November 30th, but the National Hurricane Center has been tracking a circulation of thunderstorms in the mid-Atlantic over the past several days. On Wednesday, April 19th, the system was classified as Tropical Depression One. Located over the north central Atlantic and located about halfway between Bermuda, the storm has winds of approximately 35 miles per hour (mph), just 4 mph lower than the speed required to be classified as a tropical storm.

    Plans to build morgue on Ambergris Caye commence
    A morgue on Ambergris Caye may become a reality, after a meeting involving Mayor Daniel Guerrero, officials from the Ministry of Health, the police and the U.S Embassy took place on Wednesday, April 19th. Officials gathered at The San Pedro Town Council (SPTC) conference room, where their discussion not only spoke on the importance of having a morgue on the island, but also addressed the current limitations of the police department and local authorities. According to Georgia Belezaire from the U.S Embassy, the first phase of the morgue will include a temporary unit where bodies can be kept before transporting them off the island. “We are looking at a three-body refrigerated room, which will benefit the preservation of evidence,” she said. Belezaire declared that the Embassy is in full support of the project.

    Nobel Prize Laureate visits Belize
    Nobel Peace Prize winner, James “Jim” Cobey, arrived in San Pedro from Washington, D.C. on April 7th for a well-earned vacation. As a surgeon with a Master’s degree in Public Health, Cobey has been an instrumental member of the International Campaign to Ban Landmines (ICBL), which was founded in 1992. In 1996, history was made when Belize agreed to sign the ICBL’s landmine ban into law, and therefore, Belize became the first mine-free geopolitical region in not only Central America, but the entire world. One year later in 1997, the ICBL received the Nobel Peace Prize for its members’ crucial role in starting a process that – according to the text of Cobey’s award – “in the space of a few years changed a ban on antipersonnel mines from a vision to a feasible reality.”

    Family of Zaeem Torres speaks about tragedy that took his life
    Andre Perez, uncle of the deceased, spoke with The San Pedro and shed more light into what transpired. According to him, around 9PM the boy was at a restaurant along with his parents, and as usual he was running around and playing with friends in the vicinity. Suddenly he went missing, which prompted a search party. Despite the number of people looking for him, the child could not be located. “My sister went to look for him at her house, since it was safe for him to run home, while people were looking near the dock by the restaurant and others looked by boat,” says Perez. Perez also stated that near the restaurant there were four large Rotoplas reservoirs filled with water, and one of them was uncovered, with a stool located next to it. “Someone went to check the Rotoplas water tank, and the first time they checked they did not see anything. But I think they checked two more times and then spotted my nephew floating to the side of the water tank,” said Perez. He told The Sun that it was indeed a tragedy, but he would not classify it as negligence. “It was just a truly unfortunate accident.”

    Northern Ambergris Caye Neighbourhood Watch meets to discuss future plans
    Mayor Guerrero delivered a few remarks. He swiftly addressed the issue of the late-night bars by Secret Beach, stating that their liquor licenses were issued with the condition that they only open until 5PM. He pledged the full support of the Town Council to the NACNW, announcing that the Town Council is offering new police booths for the north side of the island. The booths will be located at strategic points in order to relay emergency information to the police, and are expected to be powered by solar energy. Each booth will have its own phone number for easy contact. Guerrero also touched on the rapid growth and development of the island, saying that “it must be sustainable for the future.” Guerrero even announced that the collection booth at the Sir Barry Bowen Bridge will be removed, and that a second bridge is going to be built. There were no more details available on that matter.

    Ambergris Today

    Airbnb Advances Talks With Caribbean Tourism Organization Countries, Including Belize
    Hugh Riley, Secretary General and Chief Executive Officer at the Caribbean Tourism Organization (CTO), the region’s tourism development agency, and eight member countries, along with representatives Chris Lehane, Bruno Lewicki and Shawn Sullivan from Airbnb, the leading community driven hospitality company, met last week to discuss Airbnb’s growing presence in the region and to address areas of mutual cooperation as outlined in an agreement signed in February 2017. The topics of discussion included democratizing the tourism industry, the importance of the Caribbean region’s cultural heritage and how Airbnb is expanding economic opportunities in the region.

    San Pedro Celebrates The Resurrection Of Jesus Christ
    Catholic faithfuls on Ambergris Caye, Belize, observed a full schedule of activities during the Easter weekend which included the "Encuentro" (Meeting) of Jesus Christ and Mary on Easter Sunday. It marked the beginning of the Easter Octave. Catholics rejoiced the commemoration of the resurrection of Christ. The Easter Octave ended with an outdoor Divine Mercy Service on Sunday, April 23 at Central Park.

    Misc Belizean Sources

    mzz

    UB Earth Day 2017
    The University of Belize is having its 10th Earth Day celebration next Friday, April 28th. Always a fun time, where one can learn about the environment, and how to protect it. "UB is hosting its 10th Annual Earth Day Fair through the Natural Resource Management Program under the theme 'My Community, My Climate.' The primary goal for this year’s event is to highlight the meaning of climate change and climate literacy by engaging primary, secondary and tertiary level students in environmental education programs. On April, 28th come, enjoy and find out what UB’s Earth Day celebration is all about! We’ll have informational booths, the launch of a mural competition, interactive learning activities for children, prizes, music, fundraiser and more!

    Soon to Come: The Yabra Green Rejuvenation Project......Planning in Motion
    As part of the hardcomponents of the Belize City House of Culture and Downtown Rejuvenation Project, the Yarborough Water Front Rejuvenation Project located at the old Yarborough football field is well on its way. So far we have met with stakeholders within the community to obtain their feedback. Based on the recommendations derived from our first meeting, our architect has developed a preliminary design. The next step is for us to hold another public consultation meeting to display the preliminary design and to further develop the design with contiued imput from the community.

    Caye Caulker Health Expo
    April 22.

    Alfredo D Gonzalez "Gigi": outstanding achievement as a Crossfit athlete
    The San Pedro Sports Council along with the San Pedro Town Council proudly congratulate San Pedrano teen, Alfredo D Gonzalez "Gigi," for his outstanding achievement as a Crossfit athlete. Gigi is an athlete at CFSP Beach Box and recently ranked in his category for the Crossfit Open among the top 200 athletes worldwide making him the first Belizean athlete in history to be invited to participate in the Crossfit Games Online Qualifier. The four-day qualifier will put the top athletes to the test after which the top 20 will be invited to go head to head at 2017 Reebok Crossfit Games. The Reebok Crossfit Games has grown and is now viewed by millions worldwide. The athletes that move on to the next round will have the privilege to represent their country at Madison, Wisconsin stadium this August among thousands of spectators and athletes from across the world as they compete for the coveted title of "Fittest on Earth." We wish Gigi best of luck on the Crossfit Games Online Qualifier and in his journey to the Crossfit Games. Go get it!

    INAUGURATION CEREMONY: Trial Farm, San Pedro and San Jose Preschool Buildings
    The Government of Belize in collaboration with the European Union will inaugurate three preschools in the Orange Walk and Corozal Districts on Tuesday, 25th April, 2017. The three pre-schools were constructed with financing from the European Union and the Government of Belize under the Accompanying Measures for Sugar (AMS) 2012 programme, at a cost of 600,000 Euros or BZD 1,140,000. This means more than 150 students will have access to an early childhood education which will set the foundation for the life long process of learning by equipping children with the basic literacy and social skills.

    Corozal Scouts Prepare for Earth Day 2017
    The Corozal Scouts were busy on Tuesday April 18 preparing the grounds for the activities planned in Corozal Town for Earth Day Saturday April 22, 2017. Cub Scouts, Scouts and Leaders all came out in unison ready to serve their community. The countless hours of work in connection with Earth Day 2017 is just one way the Scouts contribute in serving their communities. BP once said “By service I mean the submission of self to the willing rendering of helpfulness to others, without thought of return or reward”

    Calla Creek elects Sanitation Committee
    FCD congratulates the village of Calla Creek for electing their Sanitation Committee. This Committee is tasked with educating its villagers, collecting a standard garbage fee from each household in the attempt to purchase their own trailer to transport garbage and to continue engaging its youths and villagers in environmental activities. Thanks goes to Chairman Mr. J. Ramos for his continued dedication

    Paradise Theater playing this weekend
    The Great Wall, Personal Shopper, A Dog's Purpose, Rings

    BSCAP LAUNCHES COPYRIGHT TOUR NATIONWIDE; CEO SHYNE BARROW LEADS THE CHARGE
    The Copyright law has dominated the headlines over the past few weeks and BSCAP CEO, Shyne Barrow, plans to keep it that way as the Belizean Society of Composers Authors & Publishers launch a nationwide Copyright tour to mobilize BSCAP members, recruit new members and make the case to affected business owners as why they must pay copyright licensing fees. CEO Barrow says the town hall styled meetings will discuss artists rights under the nations copyright law and the Burne Convention, the value of Music, benefits of BSCAP membership and how paying artists royalties will contribute to the economy. Barrow will be joined by some of the BSCAP executive including former BSCAP Chairman Jason Guerrero and administrator Melissa Zuniga. Bredda David, Supa G, Junie Mar, Method, C Wills, Don Papa John and other artists are scheduled to attend.

    Channel 7

    The Senator Becomes President
    Senator Elena Smith is the new President of country's most powerful union, the BNTU. That's the result that came out just a few minutes ago, and right now she is still doing her victory interview with the media, which we'll have for you a little later. But, first to the business of the 57th Annual BNTU Convention. The two day event was held in San Roman, Corozal, at the Escuela Secundaria Technica Mexico auditorium. The main business was the election of a new executive. It's a big deal because for the first time in 9 years, the strongest union in the country will have a new leader after 3-term president, Luke Palacio, steps aside. 3 candidates stepped up hoping to take his place; they are Mario Mesh, the President of the Corozal Rural Branch; Troy Coleman, the President of the Stann Creek Branch; and Elena Smith, the serving Labour and Civil Society Senator with a 20-year membership in the union.

    Along Came Arlene...
    Tonight storm watchers are looking in bewilderment at Arlene, the first Tropical Storm of the 2017 Hurricane Season. Now, if you're scratching your head and saying, "Burt doesn't the hurricane season start in June!?" - you're right, it does. But, along came Arlene, and she is the first tropical storm in April since Ana in 2003. Now, first off, Arlene poses no threat to Belize or any land mass. The storm is way out in the Atlantic ocean - 815 miles west of the Azores with maximum sustained winds estimated at 45 mph. But this is the third consecutive year a system has formed in the Atlantic before the official June first start of the hurricane season.

    Experts Say 2017 Hurricane Season Will Be "Average"
    And so, after Earl shook up Belize in August of 2016, this early appearance of a storm, has understandably triggered anxiety across the land. But, don't be too alarmed, because according to the experts at the Weather Channel the 2017 hurricane season won't be as active as 2016. Their projections say it's going to be an average year, with a total of 12 named storms, six hurricanes and two major hurricanes. Other leading forecasts call for 11 storms. Of course, these are just forecasts, and the experts admit, changing weather conditions such as El Nino could force them to increase the projected number of storms forecast.

    Justice Is Swift For Carjacker Who Gets 7 Years
    Last night we told you about the robbery that left a 57 year old taxi driver with knife wounds to the face and neck. According to reports, Ernesto Robinson picked up a passenger on East Collet Canal Street and took him to Western Avenue, however when they got to their destination, the passenger refused to get out and instead demanded that Robinson hand over the vehicle. The passenger began choking Robinson and stabbed and cut the side of his face and neck before Robinson managed to open his door and escape.

    Fake Cops Charged
    Last night we told you about the fake cops who were caught by the real police at Public's Supermarket on the Northern Highway. Tonight, we can show you both their pictures and share their names. They are Belize City residents 22-year-old Dorian Blair of a Gibnut Street address and 39-year-old Barrington Slusher of a Brown Street address. Yesterday afternoon, the real police from precinct four saw them standing near the door at Public's wearing khaki shirts with silver buttons, blue pants with the customary green streak on the sides and looking almost like real police. Police say the carried a black bag with 10 plastic straps. They have since been charged for making a "False Pretense of a Police Officer".

    Help Chris Recover
    Over a week ago, a 19 year old was viciously beaten by 11 men on St. Thomas Street and he needs your help to recover from the attack. On April 9th around midday Chris Welch was riding his bicycle on St. Thomas Street, heading home, when a gang of 11 men rode up from behind and surrounded him. There was a confrontation between Welch and one of the men and that led to the brutal beat down on the street. Today Welch's older sister gave us more details as to what happened and told us why her brother needs your help. Julia Welch, sister: "He goes every Sunday at St. Thomas Street to swim. So he went to YWCA, but it was closed. He went to "hanger" and when coming back down riding cruising. This happened around 12pm -1pm when he was riding down St. Thomas Street he heard sounds of bicycle near him. He continued riding when he one of them bump into him. He stop and then all of them just crowd him. He came off his bike and then one of the boys charged at him. He said he knocked out the person and when he was trying to run it was then he felt something in his head and he fell unconsciously. They attacked and after a while he jump up back. Some of his teeth fell out and he has a wound in his head. The right part of his jaw is broken."

    Freedom From a Faucet
    Yesterday 23 year old Benque Viejo Del Carmen resident, Henry Abel Calderon Garcia, was reported missing from police custody. Garcia was sent to clean a faucet behind his cell-block, but when officers went to check up on his progress, he had slipped away. Garcia was previously fined $800 for the possession of controlled drugs among other convictions. If anyone has any information about Garcia's whereabouts they are asked to contact their nearest police station or the Benque Viejo Police at 803-2022. Police could not provide a picture.

    Single Parents, Multiple Needs
    Since February, about 28 single moms and dads have been participating in a career training program at the Department of Youth Services. It is just one of many programs offered at the Department, but this one is special in that it also caters to the children of these single parents through their day care center. Now the participants can focus on their sessions and not worry about the safety of their kids - who will be right next door. The Managing Director of the LOVE foundation, who is also the social planner for the Department, told us more about this program. Deborah Sewell, Social Planner, Department Youth Services: "The day care has always been a part of the LEAP program, learning, earning and parenting we work with young people ages 14 to 29 who are single parents, dropped out of school, unemployed and we provide opportunities for them to either go back to school, we provide them with job training, career readiness and guidance in developing entrepreneurial activities so it's based on their passion areas, what they are passionate about and we work with them to be able to attain their goal. So we knew from the beginning, from the inception of the program that there would be a need if you are working with single parents for a child care facility."

    Tourist Raped At a San Pedro Hotel By a Local Man Who The Family Trusted
    Earlier this week we told you about the 17 year old who was raped on San Pedro. 39 year old Eldon Williams was charged, and has been remanded to prison. Police say that it happened early on Easter Sunday morning when he took advantage of the sleeping teenager. But what they didn't say was that the teenaged victim was a US tourist - and that the alleged rape happened at a downtown hotel. 7news has learned that Williams was a friend of the family and they spent the day with him, and then allowed him to sleep in one of the bedrooms. From there he slipped out to the living room where the 17 year old was sleeping outside on the couch and allegedly raped her. She told police that she woke up and to find Williams on top of her. A medical examination confirmed that she was raped. Williams was caught by a security guard as he allegedly tried to flee the hotel compound. The victim's family was forced to leave the country immediately and have returned to California. But, they have indicated that they will make sure they are here to testify when the case goes to trial.

    Making Smart Health Decisions
    Today the Ministry of Health and PAHO began the initial stages of the implementation of the SMART Healthcare Facilities Initiative. The initiative is designed to ensure that hospitals and healthcare providers implement energy saving strategies to make them more cost efficient. We spoke to Douglas Westby, the Technical Advisor the National Engineering and Maintenance Center, for more about the project... Douglas Westby: "We have a health sector strategic plan and part of it is to improve infrastructure and we have chosen to use the smart hospital initiative as our standard for hospitals." Alex Courtenay, 7News: "So by using these initiatives and standards, what is the benefit...?" Douglas Westby: "If our hospitals are smart which we intend them to be, the hospitals would be able to resists the effects of climate change and we would be able to improve healthcare services and save money on things like electricity and water."

    The New BNTU President Speaks
    And here now is that interview with the new president of the BNTU Elena Smith - this was done about 40 minutes ago when a winner was declared: Daniel Ortiz, 7News: "Share with us your first reaction to being elected as the new national president of the union you served for 20 years?" Elena Smith, President - BNTU: "I think the first word I must say is grateful. I'm grateful, I'm over joyed. Words can't express the feeling that I got. The support I got from my members it was so overwhelming that I don't know how to say thank you, but thank you to all the people who supported me." Daniel Ortiz, 7News: "Were you confident that you would get the victory today?" Elena Smith, President - BNTU: "I had some level of confidence, but I wasn't sure, because you never know - people might say to you 'I will support you' but when the days comes you don't know what they do or what they will do. So I wasn't over confident, but I was sure of my members from my branch."

    The Grapes Of Wrath Make A Sour Wine In Beauty Pageant Industry
    Last night we told you about the five piece article penned by Tony Rath - who is Miss Belize, Rebecca Rath's father. Rath who is a celebrated photographer had some sharp criticisms for the Pageant Director Opal Enriquez. He accused her of being manipulative, not living up to financial commitments, and undermining Rebecca Rath at the Miss Universe Pageant in the Philippines. But he had praise for Sherima Guity - herself a former Stann Creek Beauty Queen who got Rebecca to run for Ms. Belize, and provided her pageant training. Rath praised Guity for her hard, committed work with Rebecca. But today, in. a Facebook post, Guity had no praise for him. She says his article is quote, "degrading and very disappointing, and that she, quote, "refuses to be associated with the tarnishing of anyone's career."

    A Plan for Pesticides
    Today the Pesticide Control Board launched its first strategic plan. The four year plan will focus on increasing the responsible use and management of pesticides by updating legislation and governance. Acting Chairman of the PCB, Francisco Gutierrez told us more... Gutierrez also spoke to us about the PCB's stance when it comes to the herbicide Roundup, which was flagged by the World Health Organization earlier this year as a potential carcinogen. A carcinogen is a substance that can cause cancer, but Gutierrez told us that so far there's no need to be worried... Roundup is the most commonly used herbicide is the country, so Gutierrez told us that the PCB is still conducting research to ensure that its usage is not a threat.

    Coalition Keeps The Fire Burning
    It's the seventh anniversary of the Deepwater Horizon oil spill in the Gulf of Mexico. And today the Belize Coalition to Save Our Natural Heritage used that occasion to underscore that the Belize Barrier Reef Reserve System must be, quote, "meaningfully protected and safeguarded from the inherent dangers of offshore oil." The Coalition notes that there's only a one kilometre "buffer" area around the reef which the coalition calls, "woefully inadequate." Those are the scarce red areas on this map. They say a realistic safety buffer would need to be between 88 kilometres, or 54 miles) to 220 kilometres which is 136 miles. For support, they note that UNESCO has also stated that the proposed one kilometre buffer needs "revision in order to secure the protection of the property's Outstanding and Universal Value."

    Channel 5

    Senator Elena Smith Emerges Victorious as BNTU’s New National President
    As we told you Senator Elena Smith is the new President of the B.N.T.U. After approximately two and a half hours of voting, almost that much in counting and several [...]

    A Look at the BNTU Convention and Stalled Election Process
    But before the announcement of the winner, the B.N.T.U.’s Council of Management had to grapple with a problem unprecedented in its history – the prospect of alleged political interference tainting [...]

    COLA and Raymond Rivers Lend Moral Support to BNTU
    Today’s convention of the B.N.T.U. saw an appearance from two Belize City activists, Geovannie Brackett of COLA and Raymond Rivers. The Union has had a cordial, if arms’ length, relationship [...]

    COLA’s Take on the Million Dollar Honorarium
    Information to News Five is that some teachers in the Anglican and Government-managed school systems received as much as five hundred dollars each as their honorarium or reward for not [...]

    General Sales Tax Audits Revisited
    Earlier this month, we broke the news of an internal statement within the General Sales Tax Department where Officer in Charge of the Punta Gorda office, Elmer Reyes, alleged that [...]

    Miss Belize Universe and Tony Rath’s Controversial Exposé
    Miss Universe 2016, held in Manila, Philippines at the end of January, is now several months behind avid fans of pageantry. The stellar performance of Miss Belize Universe, Rebecca Rath, [...]

    Therese Rath Stands By Her Husband’s Blog
    According to the husband and wife couple, they were largely responsible for the organization of Rebecca’s trip to Miss Universe, minus Enriquez’s input as country director. Furthermore, the family claims [...]

    Shawn Rodriguez Gets Seven Years for Brazen Carjacking
    Fifty-seven-year-old cab driver Ernesto Robinson is recovering from injuries received during a brazen carjacking on Tuesday night in Belize City.  His attacker, twenty-two-year-old Shawn Rodriguez, a resident of San Ignacio, [...]

    Move Over Aaron Wilson, Two More Fake Cops are Charged
    Two Belize City men have been slapped with charges of “False Pretense of a Police Officer.” Sometime around four-thirty on Wednesday, police were informed that two men were dressed in [...]

    Teachers Honor First Leg of Make Up Time
    As part of the mediation agreement agreed to in February, the Belize National Teachers’ Union agreed to release its teachers to make up lost class time due to the October [...]

    Raymond Rivers Comments on Port Workers CBA Negotiations
    Two weeks ago stevedore Raymond Rivers visited this station with his fellow stevedores to “rail up” over the management of Port of Belize Limited’s seeming mistreatment of stevedores working the [...]

    Central Bank announces Plan to Liquidate four Credit Unions
    At the start of April, the Central Bank of Belize announced plans to liquidate four existing credit unions. These are the Police and Civil Service Credit Unions based in Belize [...]

    Work Begins on Yabra Canal Drainage
    Just before we went for the Easter break we told you how the Belize City Council was getting ready to start the process to remove the silt backed up in [...]

    A Strategic Plan is Rolled Out for Pesticide Use
    The Pesticides Control Board launched their 2017-2021 strategic plan developed in partnership with the Inter-American Institute for Cooperation on Agriculture, with support from the U.N.D.P. and the D.O.E. The plan [...]

    Healthy Living Looks at Conflict Resolution.
    It is a fact that conflicts will be inevitable in any relationship that you have – that includes your spouse, your children, your family, within your workplace and even your [...]

    The Guardian

    Good Friday claims two brothers in a well
    Brothers Isidro and Jeovani Coyoc died over the Easter weekend at their family’s Orange Walk Farm after suffocating in a water well that they were trying to clean. The double tragedy happened on Good Friday, April 14, 2017, sometime between 11:30 p.m. and 12 midday, at the family’s farm in the Goat Hill area of Orange Walk. That’s near to the BSI Tower Hill factory, where 41 year-old Isidro “John” Coyoc was overseeing his brother, 26 year-old Jeovani “Jovi”, who was at the bottom of the 40-foot well. They were attempting to clean it, but Isidro reportedly realized that Jeovani was in distress and having difficulty breathing.

    Indira Thompson killed because she refused sex
    There is much public outrage over the violent death of 35 year-old Indira “Princess” Thompson, a public fixture on Albert and Orange Streets, and a defenseless woman who was stabbed to death. At this time, the motive of her murder is believed to be her refusal of sex with her attacker. Readers who have walked past her on the street corner may have treated her as just another beggar or homeless person. She does, however, have a home and a family that would have wanted to keep her off the streets. Those close to her say that she had to look after herself from a very early age, since becoming a teenager. She has 2 brothers, one of whom tried to give her a place to stay, but she preferred her lifestyle better. Plus, there are reports that she was also suffering from mental illness, which led her to choose a vagrant way of life.

    Woman police caught on camera stealing
    Woman police constable 1241 Anne Marie Anthony has been charged with one count of theft and placed on interdiction. Police report that on Tuesday April 18, 2017 a 58-year-old Chinese businesswoman of #34 Bishop Martin Street in Santa Elena, Cayo, reported that on Good Friday April 14, 2017 about 9:27a.m. she was at her business place “Little Red Shop” when some police officers arrived to conduct a search for liquor. They conducted the search and seized several assorted liquors and left the premises.

    Are teachers being bribed by BNTU president candidates?
    By the time this issue of the Guardian hits the streets the General Membership of the BNTU, or if we go by the BNTU’s recent history, then we should say a hand full of those members, would be on their way to electing a new executive. The top and most sought after, high profile post on that executive is that of the PRESIDENCY. Vying for that top position are the following three persons: Mario Mesh of the Corozal Branch, Troy Coleman of the Stann Creek Branch and Senator Elena Smith of the Belize District Branch. All three persons are currently members of the BNTU Council of Management. In other word they are persons in the know. They all know what is going on in the union, because they are the persons who sit at the table and make the decisions for the GENERAL MEMBERSHIP of BNTU. The eventual winner of that contest should replace President Luke Palacio who is a glorified PUP lackey. Palacio demits office in August.

    Yarborough canal to be cleared
    On April 13, 2017, councillor Phillip Willoughby explained that there was a plan to clear the heavily silted Yarborough canal. Progress was made by that date with one area of the canal being dammed so that engineers could clear out the water. The mouth of the Caribbean sea that connects to the Collet Canal was dammed so as to have better access to clear the canal of the built up silt. Councillor Willoughby gave an update on the Yarbourough canal project in a later interview on April 19. According to Willoughby, the rains during the Easter were unforeseen and created another matter to be addressed. Despite the rains, the initial project is still ongoing and the removal of built-up silt in the canals will still be addressed.

    BNTU’s Illuminati
    The Illuminati, is the name given to several groups, both real and fictitious. Historically the name usually refers to the Bavarian Illuminati, an Enlightenment-era secret society founded on 1May 1776. The goals were to oppose super situation, obscurantism, religious influence over public life and abuses of state power. Don’t those words sound like what a union such as the BNTU should be all about ? However like the Illuminati has changed course over time so has the BNTU changed into now being a very secretive organization, working for special interest groups, like some sort of common mercenary. In the BNTU like the Illuminati, only the persons in a very small obscure group at the very top, know what is going on in the organization. Those are the very same persons who stand to benefit from the organization’s fortunes.

    Central bank to liquidate 4 credit unions
    The Central Bank of Belize which has responsibility for the supervision of credit unions has announced that it will be liquidating 4 of them. These credit unions are the Police Credit Union, the Mount Carmel Credit Union, the Civil Service Credit Union and the Citrus Growers and Workers Credit Union. In a notice which it sent out the Central Bank informs that the only credit union which was no longer in operation was the Citrus Growers and Workers Credit Union. While the regulator moves to liquidate, for at least two of those which action is being taken on, the Police and Civil Service Credit unions the move was almost a foregone conclusion. There was hope for the Mount Carmel Credit Union, at least up until July of last year when it was officially announced that the Credit Union was in financial problems largely as a result of dishonesty within its management.

    Nobel Peace Prize Co-Laureate Visits Belize
    On April 7, James C. “Jim” Cobey, MD, arrived in San Pedro from Washington DC for a well-earned vacation. A surgeon with a Masters degree in Public Health. Jim has been an instrumental member of the international Campaign to Ban Landmines (ICBL). ICBL was founded in 1992. A mere 5 years later, in 1997, the ICBL received the Nobel Peace Prize for its members’ crucial role in starting a process that - according to the text of Jim’s award - “in the space of a few years changed a ban on antipersonnel mines from a vision to a feasible reality.” One year earlier, in 1996, Belize and her neighbors had all agreed to sign the ICBL’s landmine ban into law, They did, and Central America therefore became the first mine-free geopolitical region in the world.

    Work towards Gang Truce in Belize City
    Police and all the different city gangs have been working toward a truce that could hopefully bring an extended period of calm, if not peace, that has been very difficult to achieve in the past. These talks have resulted, at the very least, in the entire 4-day Easter weekend to be completely calm and without gang related violence. It started as early as Monday, April 10, when gang figures from all 20 of the different Southside neighbourhoods came together at the conference room at the Raccoon Street Police Headquarters. They were there to talk out their many issues: the quarrels and the feuds that have been fuelling rivalries for months if not years.

    Ministry of Finance clarifies false claims of GST tampering
    It has come to the attention of the Ministry of Finance that concerns have been expressed by certain representatives of the business community over allegations of supposed manipulation of General Sales Tax (GST) audit results by the senior management of the Department of the GST. The Ministry of Finance rejects any suggestion of manipulation on the part of the GST Senior Management of any Audit carried out by mid-level to lower level GST Auditors and wishes to point out that under the provisions of the GST Act, the Commissioner of GST is responsible for the administration of the GST, and the assessment, collection and recovery of GST. Such responsibility includes the review and approval of audits after making any adjustments or choice of methodology that may be required in the course of such review. Thus, the Commissioner (and senior staff delegated by her) is expressly charged with finalizing to her satisfaction, including by way of making justified changes, audits conducted lower down the chain of command.

    Payaso threatens teachers
    So the Payaso is now on the news threatening those teachers who do not travel to the BNTU election venue on the buses provided for the different branches. He is telling them that they will not be allowed to vote at the BNTU election on Thursday the 20th April. Well apparently the teachers are telling Luke that April Fools’ Day does not extend to the whole month. Reports are that the majority of teachers have refused to get on the bus which will be provided for only the usual quorum of 400 and are refusing to take any more of the Payaso’s nonsense. In the past only a mere 5 percent of the membership used to decide the fate of the BNTU and the rest of the membership were just fed whatever the executive decided to give them. Well enough is enough and the general membership of the BNTU have now decided that their voices will be heard at the election.

    Prime Minister Departs Country on Personal Leave
    Belmopan. April 18th, 2017. The Office of the Prime Minister informs that the Rt. Hon. Dean Barrow departed the country on personal leave on Monday, April 17th, 2017; and will return to the country on Sunday, April 23rd, 2017. During the Prime Minister’s absence, the Hon. Patrick Faber, Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Education, Youth, Culture and Sports will act as Prime Minister.

    Training for officers in Gang Resistance
    Members of the Belize Police Department along with members of the Salvadoran Police have gathered at the Radisson Fort George Hotel to take part in a two day training workshop. The workshop was organized by the BPD’s training unit and it is about the GREAT program. The gang resistance education and training program (GREAT) will enable officers of the two participating countries to share and further arm themselves with information on how to combat the scourge of gangs in these two countries. Salvador has had decades of experience dealing with some of the most violent gangs in the world. The GREAT program has had its challenges in Belize and this training also provides the know-how to deal with the gang problem involving the community which is affected by these gangs. In Belize the primary focus of the GREAT program is young persons who are at risk of joining gangs. This program targets them before they are incorporated into gangs.

    We have two very small questions for the current BNTU leadership and their Attorney Mr. Eamon Courtenay
    >We have two very small questions for the current BNTU leadership and their Attorney Mr. Eamon Courtenay Question#1: Why did the BNTU leadership go to court to get payment for persons who did not work 11days in November and now turn around trying to stop payment for those who not only worked back then but are being asked to work extra time? Question #2: Eamon Courtney, if you are so concerned about the people’s money, would you be kind enough to return those monies you have collected from holding brief for Mr. Ashcroft and the Ashcroft related companies, because those briefs were and continue, to be against the government and people of Belize. Obviously those monies came from the people’s money?

    Belize City Council to assist Monkey River in erosion problem
    On Wednesday, April 19, the Belize City council hosted a consultation to discuss the matter of erosion which is currently affecting the residents of Monkey River. Councillor Phillip Willoughby spearheaded the interview. Willoughby empathized with the residents of the village that are being affected by the regrettable effects of erosion and explained that the council is prepared to help. He explained that on May 1st, the council will be hosting its annual clean up campaign. In an effort to assist the village, the council is urging citizens, bus owners, mechanics, motorists, and tire repair and garage shops to give any derelict or used tires toward the initiative. The tires can be deposited at the transfer station or the council may be contacted to receive the tires. It is the hope of the council that a substantial amount of tires can be collected by the start of the May 1st campaign.

    PANCAP hosts meeting of youth to discuss ending AIDS by 2030
    The focus will be to discuss the role of youth in the national and regional response to HIV and AIDS. Participants will formulate a framework for regional youth advocacy. Sexual health issues affecting young people and the barriers to accessing sexual health services will be discussed in-depth. The meeting will provide an update on the strategic directions required for ending the epidemic. PANCAP Youth Advisor, Hon. Dr Astell Collins, explained that the meeting will be pivotal for creating a strategy for youth leaders to implement in responding to the range of challenges young people face with regard to sexual health and HIV/AIDS.

    17 year old raped in San Pedro
    On April 16th, a 17 year old student of San Pedro, accompanied by her mother, gave a police report that she was raped earlier that day by someone she recognized. That man was identified as Eldon Williams, a 39 year old resident of the San Pedrito area. According to the minor, she was sleeping on a couch in their living room when at around 12:30 a.m. she felt someone on her. She claims that Williams was having sexual intercourse with her against her will. A medical examination was conducted and certified that the minor had been raped. Williams has since been arrested and charged.

    Vanzie Lamb sentenced to 3 months for weed
    Vanzie Lamb, a construction worker, was brought before Senior Magistrate Sharon Fraser to answer to a single charge of possession of 3.4 grams of weed. The case would otherwise be dismissed by the magistrate but given Lamb’s recent charge, he was warned to stay out of trouble for at least one year. If he breaks that agreement and is charged with any offence within the year, he will be sentenced to 3 months’ prison time.

    Wilfred Martinez free of possession of an unlicensed firearm
    On Tuesday April 18, Wilfredo Martinez, a 28 year old Salvadoran national, was sent home free of his charge for possession of an unlicensed firearm after 5 months in prison. In court before Chief Magistrate Anne Marie Smith, he pleaded guilty with an explanation that he was holding the firearm for his boss. Smith took the explanation in consideration and sentenced him to five months in prison. On Monday, November 17, 2016, Martinez was seen by PC Steven Flowers and other officers running with a 12 gauge shotgun. Flowers and the other officers responded to information received in St. Anne’s village. They visited the old Maskall road near Melissa Arnold’s home where they saw a Hispanic male running through some bushes with a firearm.

    Jeremy Roches pleads guilty to theft and harm
    On April 18, Jeremy Roches, a fisherman of Belize City, was brought before Chief Magistrate Anne Marie Smith. Roches had to answer to three criminal offences, harm upon his relative Evan Gardiner, theft of a 26 inch male frame beach cruiser bicycle valued at $100, property of his relative Cheryl Murrillo, and handling stolen goods for the same bike. He pleaded guilty to the three charges. In court, the prosecution dismissed the charge of handling stolen goods. Roches allegedly stole the bike and caused harm to Gardiner on April 12, 2017. According to Roches, he did not want to steal the bike but he was out of a job and he needed money. In a police report, Gardiner said that he and Roches got into a verbal disagreement and that is when Roches used a fork to cause an abrasion in Gardiner’s back.

    A San Pedro chef committed to stand trial for murder
    On Thursday, September 8, 2016, a stabbing incident in a warehouse occurred which claimed the life of 28 year old Elton Polonio. Accused was a 32 year old chef and fisherman, Linden Lindsi Kelly, a resident of the San Pedrito area, San Pedro Town. Since the incident, Kelly has been imprisoned. On September 9, 2016, Dr. Estradabran conducted a post mortem on the body of Polonio and concluded that he died due to internal and external bleeding as a consequence of stab wounds to the chest. According to police reports, Polonio was seen with stab wounds to the left side of his neck, and cut wounds to the left side of his chest and one to the right hand. Kelly was brought before Chief Magistrate Anne Marie Smith on April 19, 2017. Kelly, represented by Oscar Selgado, was told he will have to stand trial at the Supreme Court for the murder of Polonio in the June session.

    Woman caught smuggling cannabis into prison
    On Tuesday April 18, 20 year old Shantel Waight of Belize City was brought before Chief Magistrate Anne Marie Smith for attempting to smuggle 14 grams of cannabis for two men in prison. She attempted to do so while on a visit to the Belize Central Prison on November 7, 2015. Waight was caught with the drugs in a tube of Colgate toothpaste during a routine search by prison officials. She was charged with drug trafficking. Before the magistrate, Waight, who was unrepresented, pleaded guilty to the lesser charge of possession of a controlled substance.

    Alejandro Padilla repeats as Holy Saturday Cross Country Champion
    The 89th riding of the Annual Holy Saturday Cross Country Cycling Classic is now history. The annual event took place on Saturday 15th April, 2017, with 80 riders which included a field of 7 former champions and the defending champion, competing in the 140 miles event. The ride started out with the lead off from the BTL Park here in Belize City to Leslie’s Imports at Mile 2 on the George Price Highway where the official start took place. At mile 8 after the station prize Alejandro Padilla launches the first serious attack, he is followed by his team-mate Giovanni Macario, along with Brandon Cattouse and Oscar Quiroz of Team Smart and then by the main pack of riders. It was at mile 35, that some 7 riders tried to break away, these included American Phillip Trupelli, Ernest Bradley, Guatemalan Adler Torres, Oscar Quiroz, Brandon Cattouse and Keon Robateau.

    Belmopan Bandits SC remains undefeated in Premier League Closing Season
    The Premier League of Belize Closing Season competition came to an end of Sunday April 16th, 2017, with two games on the schedule. Of the two games that were scheduled to play, only one game did materalised and that game was played at the MCC Grounds between the Belize Defence Force FC and the Police United FC, which ended in a 2-2 draw. The visiting Police United was the first to make it onto the scoreboard when Anderson Cordoba scored the 1st goal of the game in the 13th minute of play to give his team a 1-0 lead. The Belize Defence Force FC was able to tie the score at 1-1 when Shane Flores scored the equalising goal for his team in the 27th minute of play. The first half of the game ended in a 1-1 tie.

    NEBL regular season competition resumes this week
    The National Elite Basketball League regular season will resume this Thursday April 20, after the Easter Break with five games on the schedule. On Thursday April 20 at 8:30 pm out at the UB Gymnasium in the City of Belmopan, the visiting Cayo Western Ballaz will go up against the Belmopan Bandits. Then on Friday April 21 at 9:00 pm at the Orange Walk Multi-Purpose Centre in Orange Walk Town, the defending champions, Smart Belize Hurricanes will see action against the Orange Walk Running Rebels. And also at 9:00 pm at the Belize Elementary School Auditorium it will be the league’s leading San Pedro Tiger Sharks going up against the Belize City No Limit Team.

    Chateau Caribbean engulfed in flames again!
    On Monday, April 17th, police responded to a fire on Marine Parade. There they saw the already damaged and burnt Chateau Caribbean hotel englufed in flames again. The previous fire that initially destroyed the landmark occurred on Sunday, November 27, 2016. The Belize National Fire Service managed to extinguish the fire after a park ranger reported that he saw smoke coming from the building and later started to see flames. He mentioned that he did not notice any suspicious activity or persons in the area. Despite help from the fire service and the ranger, the cause of the fire is still unknown.

    Words of Life with Pastor Barry Fraser
    In John chapter 15, verse 7, Jesus proclaimed:” If you abide in Me and My words abide in you, you can ask for anything you want, and you’ll receive it.” We live in a busy fast paced world where we are always trying to juggle several things at a time. Sometimes a few things get dropped along the way because we can’t cope with handling everything. Many times we forget to pray! Most of us have adapted to a multitasking way of life. This way of doing things works well when we divide our tasks into main and background tasks. For example whilst cooking we can also switch on the washing machine. It can also work with our study of the word of God. We can have it at the back of our minds all day as we go about our daily lives.

    One child is recovering and another lost his life to drowning
    A 6-year-old boy drowned over the Easter weekend, and another child, a 9-year-old girl, is clinging to life at the KHMH after she almost died while swimming. The drowning victim is 6 year-old Zaem Torres, a student of Water Lane Street in San Pedro. His uncle tells the press that on the night of Holy Thursday, April 13, 2017, his family went to a restaurant near their home. They had a rather busy day at the water company that they own right at their home, and so they took him with them. He was allowed to play with other children, since it is an area that is protected from traffic. His parents were keeping an eye on him because he would, as children do, run back and forth and ask for food or water.

    Sedi:” I use the expression… because people understand…”
    The nation of Belize owes KREM and Bro. Nuri Mohammad a big “Thank You!” Every Sunday night Sedi was on KREM radio and TV explaining vital national issues to the People. He used the correct legal, geographical and technical jargon; yet the perverse tried destroying him. All they got for their effort was dirt on their noses. They had deprived the Belizean People of the very information that they now hypocritically claim voters need so desperately! They do not give up, interminable! This time when he used an analogy that was crystal clear to “roots Belizeans;” they again got their undies all soiled. The perverse will always find fault; whatever! Nuri pulled out all the stops, but Sedi was as patient as Job and corrected him each and every time. Pressuring, badgering, leading questions and unreasonable suggestions were all soundly rejected! When the brain of KREM called, she was likewise easily corrected. Sedi even had the very book with charts and maps displaying the continuing decrease in size of Palestine (and complementary increase in size of Israel).

    PUP Back-benchers
    When political topics become scarce for me the temptation rouses deep within to fall back on old dependable: the ten bitter years of PUP governance under the Musa/ Fonseca administration. Now talk about radioactive names. I mean there are so many corrupt acts perpetuated under the so-called communist Said. It was all a conto sway the poor. Remember the battle phrase, “los pobres somos mas?” the brainchild of yet another communistic evangelist gone wild when he saw money and land. Trust me, Easy pickings for me to write about. But a friend of mine advised me that said strategy was no way to win an election. An incumbent political Party must be able to campaign on its own merits, not on the fallings of its predecessor.

    Bar-B-Q causes fire in Belize City
    On Sunday, April 16, police responded to a house fire on Elston Kerr Street in Belize City. There they saw fire personnel putting out a blaze located inside a room of the unpainted wooden bungalow house. The owner, 52 year-old Dawn Faber, is a domestic of a Raccoon street address. Initial police investigations revealed that on April 16, someone attempted to barbecue on a grill that was near a wall of the house. Shortly after, the house was in flames. A total value of $12,500 was lost in the fire, including a mattress and an undetermined amount of clothing. No one was injured in the fire. Police investigation continues.

    Breaking Belize NewsPJ

    Elena Smith is new BNTU President
    Senator Elena Smith is the new President of the Belize National Teacher’s Union (BNTU). Smith won by a landslide in today’s elections beating opponents Troy Coleman (Stann Creek member), and Mario Mesh (BNTU Corozal Branch President). Some 636 BNTU members cast their votes in the elections which began shortly after midday. Smith got 349 votes, while Coleman got 147, and Mesh received 140.

    Marijuana – Time to legalize it!
    By Lisa Shoman: Cannabis Sativa (known locally as marijuana, weed or pot) is like alcohol, sex and voting – not for minors. But for consenting adults? Why not? I have, in my life, smoked pot/eaten laced baked goods and indulged in food prepared with marijuana. I’ve used products enriched with its close relative, Indian hemp… sometimes illegally, but lately, legally. It is past time to stop pretending as though there is something shameful about cannabis consumption.

    BNTU elections proceed
    Members of the Belize National Teacher’s Union by a landslide vote, have decided to continue with today’s elections as planned. A total of 500 teachers voted “yes” to proceed with the elections while only 80 said “no”. The candidates are preparing to make their […]

    Good citizen appears in court after helping cops
    Today, Omar Velasquez appeared in front of the San Pedro Magistrate in connection with charges of keeping a firearm and ammunition without a gun license. In December 2015, he reportedly took officers to an area where a .38 revolver and ammunition had been hidden. […]

    BNTU wants to cancel elections today due to political interference
    Happening now: The Belize National Teacher’s Union (BNTU) is deliberating whether or not to differ the ongoing executive elections due to political interference. Outgoing BNTU President, Luke Palacio, put it to the district branches to vote on canceling today’s elections and resume at a […]

    Guatemalan Congress rejects map to include Belize
    The Congress of Guatemala has by a landslide vote rejected a proposal to print Guatemalan maps that would include Belize as a part of its territory. According to the Guatemalan media house Prensa Libre, the congress voted, 84/ 26 against using the map which […]

    Two fake Police officers arrested in Belize City
    According to police reports, yesterday around 4:30 p.m., police received information of two male persons dressed in what appeared to be police uniforms acting suspiciously in the vicinity of Publics Supermarket on the Phillip Goldson Highway. The two men were seen wearing khaki shirts […]

    Guatemalan national escapes from custody in Benque
    Yesterday afternoon around 2:40, detainee Henry Abel Calderon Garcia, 23, a Guatemalan laborer of Caracol Lane, Benque Viejo Town was reported missing from custody. According to reports from police, Garcia was asked to perform cleaning duties and was sent to the faucet behind the cell […]

    Blogs

    Where Is Belize? And Other Fun Facts You May Not Know…
    These days most people have heard of Belize. They’ve seen the TV ads and online videos of its gorgeous offshore islands, lush inland jungles, and ancient Mayan archaeological ruins. But when someone starts to plan their first trip to they often ask, “Where is it?” It’s not unusual for people to be confused about Belize and its location. So let’s talk geography: Belize lies directly below the western Yucatán Peninsula. Corozal, the northernmost town in Belize, is directly south of the Mexican town of Chetumal. A flight from Miami or Houston to Belize takes just over two hours. Beyond the Yucatán, Belize lies to the east of , and north of . It sits on the Caribbean Sea and is part of CARICOM—the Caribbean Community. This unique country has one foot planted in Central America, and the other in the Caribbean. Many of its coastal towns have the look and laidback feel that the Caribbean is known for.

    EASTER EGG HUNTING IN BELIZE 2017!
    What spells family better than a relaxing vacation with your closest loved ones? Few things… What brings families together more than seeing their little ones having the time of their lives? Again, few things… In that spirit, the team at The Lodge at Chaa Creek loves embracing all things family oriented and what better way to do so on an easter weekend than a rainforest easter egg hunt? Youngsters and their parents woke up at the crack of our Belizean dawn to gather in search of the candy filled easter eggs carefully hidden by our team. They raced around looking but there was really enough for everyone!

    Inside the Great Blue Hole of Belize
    Known to locals for centuries as a uniquely special diving location, the Blue Hole of Belize came to the world’s attention in 1971 after famed French marine biologist Jacques Cousteau declared it to be one of his top 10 diving spots in the world. Later, the Discovery Channel named the Belize Blue Hole as one of the top 10 most amazing places on Earth. Every year, thousands of experienced divers from around the globe come to the Blue Hole of Belize to descend over 90 meters into the inky darkness. As an underwater diving attraction, there is little variation by season or time of year so just about any time is a good time to explore the watery depths of the Belize Blue Hole. Be aware that storms or heavy rainfall can somewhat reduce visibility as well as make transportation to the Belize Blue Hole more difficult.

    10 Reasons to visit Belize in Summer
    It’s no secret that Belize is a terrific and magical travel destination. A country rich in excitement, there are endless adventures to explore. From beaches to food to nature, this Central American nation has much to offer. Here’s why you should add Belize to your list of best summer vacation spots!

    Top 17 Things to see and do in Belize
    Make 2017 the year you give yourself the gift of Belize. It’s easy to do; competition between United, American, Copa, Taca and Delta airlines has lowered fares since Southwest Airlines joined the fray in October 2015. In addition, two prestigious travel awards were bestowed upon Ambergris Caye and Placencia, so these days, both destinations are international stars. For a small, easily navigable nation, undertaking all 17 of the nation’s top attractions would be difficult to manage in a larger country, but it’s so easy to get around Belize, you might wonder why it took you so long to get here and see for yourself why these attractions top the lists of travelers!

    International Sourcesizz

    Airbnb Advances Talks With Caribbean Tourism Organization Countries
    Hugh Riley, Secretary General and Chief Executive Officer at the Caribbean Tourism Organization (CTO), the region's tourism development agency, and eight member countries, along with representatives Chris Lehane, Bruno Lewicki and Shawn Sullivan from Airbnb, the leading community driven hospitality company, met last week to discuss Airbnb's growing presence in the region and to address areas of mutual cooperation as outlined in an agreement signed in February 2017. The topics of discussion included democratizing the tourism industry, the importance of the Caribbean region's cultural heritage and how Airbnb is expanding economic opportunities in the region. The Minister of Tourism of Belize, Manuel Heredia, explained that one of his concerns is the availability of official data on the impact of Airbnb on the accommodation sector, including the percentage of visitors who stay in Airbnb-listed properties. "If we work together and we have control over it, this will be something positive for the Caribbean and for Belize. My technical team will collaborate with Airbnb to make sure that we learn as much as possible in order to establish the proper regulations so this works in a beneficial way." added Mr. Heredia.

    PANCAP hosts youth meeting to discuss ending AIDS by 2030
    The Pan Caribbean Partnership against HIV and AIDS (PANCAP) will host a meeting of youth leaders from 19 Caribbean countries on April 21 and 22, 2017 in Port of Spain, Trinidad. The focus of the forum will be a discussion on the role of youth in the national and regional response to HIV and AIDS; participants will also be involved in formulating and agreeing on a framework for regional youth advocacy. Senator Robert Browne, minister of health, wellness and the environment, St Vincent and the Grenadines and chair of the executive board of PANCAP, will deliver the keynote address at the opening ceremony on Friday, April 21.

    U.S. Servicemembers visit Liberty Children’s Home during Beyond the Horizon 2017
    Not even the inclement weather was able to put a damper on the spirits of the children living at Liberty Children’s Home in Ladyville, Belize as Servicemembers visited April 18, 2017, to lend a helping hand during a community relations event as part of Beyond the Horizon 2017. The task force’s information operations cell coordinated the volunteer effort that included a wide range of helpful and needed services and activities. Servicemembers spent their day removing safety hazards from the property, playing a variety of games with the children and providing basic medical examinations. “There was a low hanging tree over one of the housing units and we decided to cut it down and get it out of the way,” said Spc. Rudy Sneed, a shower and laundry specialist with the 452nd Quartermaster Company, an Army Reserve unit based in Scottsdale, Arizona. “We were afraid the tree might fall and cause serious damage to the property.”

    CDC Still Warning Travelers About Zika In The Caribbean
    Reports of Zika cases in the Caribbean may have disappeared from the headlines and even PAHO’s latest epidemiological reports show few to no reported cases, but the US Centers For Disease Control is still warning those thinking of traveling to several Caribbean nations about the virus especially as the weather gets warmer, News Americas Now has found. Thirty-seven Caribbean countries, including the US territories of Puerto Rico and the USVI, remain on the CDC’s travel advisory list as a “Level 2” alert, which advises travelers to “Practice Enhanced Precautions.” The CDC on March 10, 2017 updated its travel advisory for the islands.

    Two Caribbean destinations in latest top 20 list of places to honeymoon
    To help newlyweds, and the engaged, better navigate the honeymoon destination market, Flight Network, the largest travel agency that is both owned and operated in Canada, has spent months researching and interviewing the best of the best to curate the ultimate list of top 20 luxury honeymoon destinations, which includes two Caribbean resorts. 5. San Pedro – Belize. San Pedro is a slice of paradise facing the Caribbean Sea. Home to the world’s second largest barrier reef, the Pedro Barrier Reef, is a world treasure you will get to enjoy every day you spend there. When not snorkeling or diving though, you’ll find yourself kicking back under a palm or exploring the old fishing village turned town that’s said to inspire the song, ‘La Isla Bonita’. San Pedro is also incredibly close to the world-famous Mayan ruins, a truly special place to explore.

    The Top 10 Things to Do in Belize
    When it comes to choosing a place for your Caribbean vacation, Belize might not be at the top of your list — there are more popular Central American and Caribbean destinations, after all. However, what makes Belize a truly amazing holiday spot is its diversity in both terrain and activities. The country’s eastern side provides the azure blue waters that make the Caribbean such an in-demand destination, as well as the second largest coral reef system in the world. On the west side, you’ll find lush rainforests, historic Mayan ruins and many different species of exotic wildlife. Tourism is continuously expanding in this small, but lovely, country, as Belize had the fastest growth of any tourism destination in the last year, with an overall growth of 13% in the last two decades. Aside from its growing popularity, here are the top 10 reasons why you should visit Belize this year.

    Videos

  • HONEYMOON IN BELIZE | 2017 | GoPro HERO3, 6.5min. Footage of our honeymoon in Belize filmed entirely on GoPro HERO3. We stayed just north of San Pedro on Ambergris Caye in February 2017 at Captain Morgan's Retreat (captainmorgans.com). The Mayan site we visited in Xunantunich outside San Ignacio. We snorkeled at Hol Chan Marine Reserve and Shark Ray Alley.

  • BSI ASR CROP REVIEW 2017 - WEEK 19, 4min.

  • CNN Special on the Hummingbird Highway in Belize, 4.5min.

  • Cayo Western Ballaz basketball game Thursday night vs. Belmopan Bandits, 1.5hr.

  • Belize, 8min.

  • SARSTUN REFUGE INTERNATIONAL, 3min. Located on the river between Belize and Guatemala, Sarstún is an isolated community greatly in need of basic health care and education systems. Their “road" is the river and the "highway" is the Gulf of Honduras. The nearest health care facility is a two-hour boat ride away in Puerto Barrios. The journey there costs about $100 round-trip and is too expensive for the local residents to afford.

  • Belize Tourism - “Southern”, 1min.

  • Ride Day 24: Chetumal to San Ignacio, Belize, 30min. After a few days rest I was on my way to San Ignacio and a new country in Belize. Unfortunately for me, the weather forecast was for rain for the next 3-4 days, and there was really only a few things I wanted to do with my time in Belize. One was to do some diving in Ambergris Caye on an island off Belize City. Which was now out of the question due to the weather and the other was to visit the Altun Ha ruins. Once I entered Belize and drive a few miles past the border crossing on my motorcycle it was just bucketing down with rain, and the radar and weather forecast indicated no respite in sight for at least a few days, so I decided that I would see plenty of ruins ion this trip and the best thing to do for me was to head West our of the weather. So, as with any adventure, you need to be able to adapt, so I decided to head to San Ignacio on the far west of Belize near the border with Guatemala and stay a night or two near San Ignacio as there were more ruins in this area.

  • HALF MOON WALL~Lighthouse Reef Belize, 5.5min. Marine Life we typically see on the wall also a visit to Half Moon Caye " World Heritage Site" home to the nesting Red Footed Booby Bird.

  • Belize Marching Band 2017 - Road March, 3min. Saturday, 8 April, 2017 Location: Orange Walk Town.


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