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Light Bill Going Down!!! BEL applies for lower rates Print E-mail
( 2 Votes )
Written by Shane D. Williams   
Thursday, 02 February 2012 00:00

PublicThe Public Utilities Commission (PUC) held a press conference on Friday, December 2, inside the VIP room of the Radisson to announce that the Belize Electricity Limited (BEL) had made a formal submission for a Full Tariff Review Proceeding (FTRP) for the period July 1, 2012 to June 30, 2016.


Leroy Almendarez, Director of Administration and Tariffs at PUC, explained that BEL is proposing a 3.4% rate reduction. During the FTRP PUC will review and set electricity rates, tariffs as well as fees and other charges. There are several steps that the commission executes before making a decision on rates. The first of those steps is the invitation to the general public to send in their comments on the proposal. That process bill will be open for 20 days starting from December 1; thereafter, there will be a 7 p.m. public meeting scheduled for December 21 at the Princess Hotel. At that time Belizeans will be free to share their views on the issue. The most recent TRP public meeting was held on October 13, 2009 for the Belize Water Services Limited. Less than a handful of residents attended and only one individual shared her view on the issue. Individuals who wish not to speak publicly may express their views in writing and submit it to the PUC. Steps other than the public meeting include an investigation into the company then a primary decision. If the company has objections against PUC’s decision, an independent expert will be hired to review the proposed Schedules and Tariffs. Based on precedence, after that expert releases its position,consumers using at least 10% of BEL’s power will have 15 days to forward comments to the PUC. The commission will then make its Final Decision.

It is not very common for a company to propose a rate reduction. Almendarez said BEL should serve as an example of good corporate citizenry. However, a proposal for 3.4% reduction does not mean a 3.4% reduction in rates. Almendarez said, “After analyzing the data it might not call for a 3.4% reduction.” The proceedings may reveal that for the company to meet its investment cost and remain viable a 3.4% reduction in rates is too much or it may reveal that the realities provide for an even greater rate reduction than what the company proposes. According to a press release from the company, “BEL’s request to lower the Mean Electricity Rate is being made possible by the Company’s improvements in both its operational performance and financial management.” It goes on to say that new management has emphasized cutting wasteful spending while maintaining reliable service. Furthermore, “Since July 2011, BEL’s cash flow position has improved and the Company has not had to make any further request to the Government of Belize for assistance in the form of electricity pre-payments.” 

According to Jefferey Locke, Chief Executive Officer of BEL, “By the end of 2012, we project that our financial performance will be at a level where we can once again secure long-term financing for investments in major expansion initiatives. -1 6 0 54 12/8/2011 06:00:00 64 Shane D. Williams 0/0/0000 00:00:00 0 0 0/0/0000 00:00:00 12/8/2011 06:00:00 0/0/0000 00:00:00 show_title= link_titles= show_intro= show_section= link_section= show_category= link_category= show_vote= show_author= show_create_date= show_modify_date= show_pdf_icon= show_print_icon= show_email_icon= language= keyref= readmore= 1 0 2 0 2387 robots= author= 4131 Dr. Elson Kaseke dies in Merida dr-elson-kaseke-dies-in-merida

Dr.The Guardian has confirmed that Belize’s legal community has lost one of its bright legal minds in Dr. Elson Kaseke, 46, who passed away at a hospital in Merida on Tuesday December 6th. Kaseke had gone abroad to seek medical attention for some time now.


About a month ago, rumors went flying around Belize that he had passed away, but they were quickly dispelled. This time around it is unfortunate, but it is iron certitude that Kaseke’s death now follows his wife and son who predeceased him.

Kaseke was originally a Zimbabwe National, and he made his home here in Belize about 20 years ago. As an attorney he rose to prominence, until he was contracted as Solicitor General in the previous government administration.

Kaseke is attributed to the drafting up of many of Belize’s laws up until 2007. The availability and access to Belize’s laws on the web has also been attributed to him. 

He also practiced law in Belize City for several years, and he was a distinguished courtroom litigator who was able to defend his arguments with a tenacity which was well-respected.

He leaves behind his young daughter, Jane Kaseke, and a host of friends and colleagues who will definitely miss his idealism. -1 6 0 53 12/8/2011 06:00:00 62 12/8/2011 18:52:12 64 0 0/0/0000 00:00:00 12/8/2011 06:00:00 0/0/0000 00:00:00 show_title= link_titles= show_intro= show_section= link_section= show_category= link_category= show_vote= show_author= show_create_date= show_modify_date= show_pdf_icon= show_print_icon= show_email_icon= language= keyref= readmore= 2 0 2 0 2884 robots= author= 4132 Mexican drug runner imprisoned 284lbs of Cocaine Destroyed mexican-drug-runner-imprisoned-284lbs-of-cocaine-destroyed

DrugsMartin Machado Urias, 44, a Mexican National, has been arraigned and convicted in Corozal Magistrate’s Court of drug trafficking and the importation of drugs. His conviction comes as a result of his interception at the Belize/Mexico Border on Thursday evening, December 1, 2011.


Urias’ vehicle, a white Nissan pickup with a white trailer, had already passed through Belize Customs, and he was about to enter the Mexican side when Belizean Police intercepted him and searched his vehicle.

When that search turned up empty, he and his vehicle were then escorted to the Corozal Police station. A thorough police sweep of his trailer revealed a secret compartment which contained the 111 parcels of cocaine, which were all labeled “XT”.

Urias was intercepted this time due to an alert police officer who witnessed him over-taking a northern-bound bus. This officer noticedthat his vehicle was the one which had been flagged as suspicious by BenqueVejo Police.

The reason for Benque Police’s suspicion was that Urias’ vehicle had been seen in transit through Belize heading to Mexico as much as twice a month since around June or July of this year. What was even more suspicious to police was that Urias claimed to be a shoesalesman, but every time he was searched, they only found samples of his product and their storage racks.

This time Urias almost made it home free, but due to the tip ofthis officer, Belizean authorities engaged him and made the discovery.

He appeared in Corozal Magistrate’s Court on Friday and pleaded guilty to the trafficking of 111 bricks of cocaine with a market value of $2.5 million US.

Magistrate Clive Lino sentenced him to eight years imprisonment, and Urias was also fined $100,000 for the drug trafficking charge. If he defaults, he will serve another eight years imprisonment. Additionally, he was sentenced to another fine of $100,000, and another eight years, which is to run concurrently with the first sentence. If he should default on the payment of the second fine, he stands to serve another eight years.

Each default sentences are to run consecutively with the two concurrent eight year sentences, which means that he may spend as littleas eight years, but as much as 24, if he defaults on both payments.

As a result of the drug bust, security detail at the Belize Central Prison has been stepped up, since this man is an international drug trafficker. As for the drugs, police conducted a destruction exercise in the pre-dawn hours of Wedneday December 7th. The drugs were transported to the Loskot sawmill incinerator located in Orange Walk where, in the presence of media personnel, police officers, a magistrate and other officials, the bricks were incinerated. -1 6 0 53 12/8/2011 06:00:00 62 0/0/0000 00:00:00 0 0 0/0/0000 00:00:00 12/8/2011 06:00:00 0/0/0000 00:00:00 show_title= link_titles= show_intro= show_section= link_section= show_category= link_category= show_vote= show_author= show_create_date= show_modify_date= show_pdf_icon= show_print_icon= show_email_icon= language= keyref= readmore= 1 0 1 0 1221 robots= author= 4133 Law Matters law-matters

Thomas Wentworth, Earl of Strafford, advisor to King Charles 1 of England and Lord Lieutenant of Ireland was unable to prevent the Scots from invading the North of England and thus lost the confidence of the King.  He found himself in a power struggle with another confident of King Charles and was charged with treason under an obscure law that had remained unused for 240 years.  He maintained that his enemies had carefully searched the law books to find a law that carried the death penalty with which they could charge him.  He was found guilty by the members of the House of Commons and was beheaded in May of 1641.  This true story illustrates why it is dangerous and wrong to argue that a law that is not currently being used should not concern anyone and should just be left on the books.  It is always there to be used whenever the authorities wish to persecute an individual.  Just a few years ago the authorities in Malaysia charged the leader of the main opposition party with sodomy.  The charges were eventually thrown out but the charge was sufficient to keep Anwar Ibrahim in jail during a crucial election period, thus ensuring victory for the incumbents.

A law on the books is a constant temptation for those in authority to use or abuse.  In addition it serves to legitimize stigma and discrimination.  Within the context of public health it has been shown to prevent people from accessing prevention and treatment programs.  Caribbean countries such as Bahamas and Anguilla repealed Victorian laws against sodomy many years ago and their societies have not fallen apart.  However, there has been a significant increase in these countries of the number of people coming forward to access HIV services thus decreasing their own vulnerability and that of the general population.

Within this context it is disheartening to witness most of our church leaders joining in a hysterical movement to retain an anachronistic law that they admit is not currently in use.  It is understandable that they feel a need to remind their flocks of biblical injunctions but that is quite different from the current lynch mob atmosphere.  It is different in the same way that it is acceptable to voice an opinion on the guilt or innocence of an accused person but quite improper to join a lynch mob intent on taking justice into its own hands.  It might not be the intent of many of those who are joining this hysterical movement but they should consider that it legitimizes the most extreme within the mob and will encourage discrimination and possibly violence against those whose sexual orientation puts them at risk.

It is incredible that the Churches should be able to muster such intensity over an issue that should concern only the consenting adults involved while other more pressing issues receive little attention. During these 16 Days of Activism Against Gender-based Violence 2011 the Churches have managed only token activism of their own.  A recent homophobic article in the Amandala contained a charge that the male author had been approached or seen another young man approached by an older man on four different occasions during his lifetime, citing no personal experience of violence or coercion. Welcome to the world of women!  Any female over the age of ten can list hundreds of occasions when they have been bothered by unwelcome advances from men, especially older men.  Many can also list occasions where violence or the threat of violence was also present.  Historical analysis shows that women and girls are in far greater danger from heterosexual males than are boys and men from homosexual males.  The issue that we should unite and fight against is that of sexual violence in any of its forms.  This may require a serious study of the laws we have to protect people from forced sexual contact and indeed the definitions of sexual assault and rape currently being used.

The law does matter.  If it did not, then why bother to have laws?  However, if we do have laws then we should be ready to use them because otherwise it remains at the discretion of the authorities which laws to enforce and which to ignore.  It also allows authorities to decide against whom to enforce the law and under what circumstances and this is an open invitation to abuse of power.  Since experience shows that some men will continue to have sex with men it is also forcing law abiding citizens to become law-breakers.

Let us work together to fight the very real problem of Gender Based Violence and not be sidetracked by laws that have their basis in the ambivalence and hypocrisy of Victorian England concerning sex and sexuality.  Each of us can continue to interpret our religious books as we see fit and to follow our own sexual orientation but that should not be the basis for our laws.  It is precisely because the law matters that we should repeal laws that will not be adhered to by a significant minority of the population.  We should also enact and enforce laws that give protection to all our citizens especially those that protect against gender based violence, sexual exploitation and coercion.                                                                                                                                                  

-1 10 0 56 12/8/2011 06:00:00 62 0/0/0000 00:00:00 0 0 0/0/0000 00:00:00 12/8/2011 06:00:00 0/0/0000 00:00:00 show_title= link_titles= show_intro= show_section= link_section= show_category= link_category= show_vote= show_author= show_create_date= show_modify_date= show_pdf_icon= show_print_icon= show_email_icon= language= keyref= readmore= 1 0 2 0 77 robots= author= 4134 Special Envoy Boosts Christmas Spirit in Underprivileged Children special-envoy-boosts-christmas-spirit-in-underprivileged-children

ChildrenOn Saturday, December 3rd, Special Envoy for Women and Children, Mrs. Kim Simplis Barrow, hosted her 2nd Annual Spirit of Christmas Concert at the Bliss Centre. Approximately 275 invited guests attended the concert, including residents from five children’s home from across Belize, as well as the Stella Maris School, St. Luke’s Choir and children from the Belize Cancer Society.


Mrs. Simplis Barrow surprised the crowd when she walked on stage to welcome the children to the concert and wish them a fun morning. She also used the opportunity to thank everyone for their support and well-wishes since her cancer diagnosis. Mrs. Barrow also delivered a special message to the children afflicted with cancer in the audience, telling them that they will “fight the good fight together and in the end they will kiss cancer goodbye.”

The attendees were then treated to performances by Denise Castillo, the Samuel Haynes Band, Ballet Art School, Supa G, Melonie Gillett and Shawn Saldano, which truly had them feeling the spirit of the season. Additional entertainment was also provided by Ozzie the Clown, Santa Claus, and Dora and Diego mascots.

During the ceremony, Chief Executive Officer in the Ministry of Human Development, Ms. Judith Alpuche, handed over gifts to the childcare institutions, while their managers each received gift certificates as a token of appreciation for their hard work running the homes. At the end of the two-hour long show, each child received a small gift as well as a snack package.

The Spirit of Christmas Concert is held annually especially for the residents of the childcare institutions in Belize. These children for various reasons are away from their family during the holidays and the concert serves a means of instilling within them the festivity of the season. This year’s event was sponsored by the LifeLine Foundation, Love TV, McNab Designs, OliveraRusu Photography, Mirab Store, Institute of Creative Arts, Quan’s Trading and Wave Radio. The show was broadcasted live on Love TV and Wave Radio.

Mrs. Barrow thanks all those performers and sponsors who contributed to the show’s success. -1 1 0 40 12/8/2011 06:00:00 62 0/0/0000 00:00:00 0 0 0/0/0000 00:00:00 12/8/2011 06:00:00 0/0/0000 00:00:00 show_title= link_titles= show_intro= show_section= link_section= show_category= link_category= show_vote= show_author= show_create_date= show_modify_date= show_pdf_icon= show_print_icon= show_email_icon= language= keyref= readmore= 1 0 11 0 975 robots= author= 4135 Hon. Gaspar Vega Distributes Over 230 Lots to Orange Walk Residents hon-gaspar-vega-distributes-over-230-lots-to-orange-walk-residents

Hon.Deputy Prime Minister and Area Representative for Orange Walk North, Hon. Gaspar Vega, provided an early Christmas gift to residents of Trial Farm and Otro Benque on Thursday, December 1.


Residents of both villages were invited to the Trial Farm Park and over 230 house lots were issued to first time land owners. As Minister of Natural Resources, Hon. Gaspar Vega has been all across the country issuing lots to first time land owners. This occasion was particularly special to him: “It is always extra special when I have the pleasure to hand over leases to my very own people of Orange Walk North.” He advised them to apply for title as quick as possible. He promised that the cost will be affordable.

The Government of Belize is currently embarking on a large land subdivision project in which thousands of individuals will receive their first house lots. -1 1 0 40 12/8/2011 06:00:00 62 0/0/0000 00:00:00 0 0 0/0/0000 00:00:00 12/8/2011 06:00:00 0/0/0000 00:00:00 show_title= link_titles= show_intro= show_section= link_section= show_category= link_category= show_vote= show_author= show_create_date= show_modify_date= show_pdf_icon= show_print_icon= show_email_icon= language= keyref= readmore= 1 0 10 0 939 robots= author= 4136 Tuxtla Mechanism for Dialogue and Coordination reinforced to strengthen democracy, integration and cooperation in Mesoamerica tuxtla-mechanism-for-dialogue-and-coordination-reinforced-to-strengthen-democracy-integration-and-cooperation-in-mesoamerica

Tuxtia06 Dec 2011 |  Mérida, Yucatán, Mexico, 05 December 2011
The Thirteenth Summit of Heads of State and Government of the Tuxtla Mechanism for Dialogue and Coordination in Mérida, Yucatán ended today. The Summit was attended by the presidents of Guatemala, Álvaro Colom; Honduras, Porfirio Lobo; Mexico, Felipe Calderón; Nicaragua, Daniel Ortega; Panama, Ricardo Martinelli; Dominican Republic, Leonel Fernández; and First Vice-President of Costa Rica, Alfio Piva and the Ministers of Foreign Affairs of Belize, Wilfred Elrington; Colombia, María Ángela Holguín; and El Salvador, Hugo Martínez. On this occasion, President of Chile Sebastián Piñera also attended in his capacity as Special Guest.


The leaders attended a productive working meeting, during which they examined key issues for the region. They confirmed their commitment to the Tuxtla Mechanism twenty years after its inception; the Mechanism has been consolidated as the main Mesoamerican forum of agreement, political dialogue and cooperation.

They reviewed advancements in the Mesoamerican Integration and Development Project in specific areas such as: highway infrastructure; electric interconnection and telecommunications; the Mesoamerican System of Territorial Information and the Mesoamerican Public Health System.

They agreed to create a Management Unit to implement the Pacific Corridor and announced the operation of the Mesoamerican Procedure for International Goods Transport (TIM), involving the installation of computer systems and standardized procedures to speed up customs, migratory and health procedures.

Mexico confirmed its commitment to continuing to work to strengthen the Mexico-Central American interconnection to implement the Electric and Telecommunications Interconnection in Mesoamerica, which will benefit the region through more competitive prices and reduce the digital gap.

In the sphere of cooperation, Mexico announced the establishment of the new Financial Cooperation Strategy for Mesoamerican and Caribbean Countries (Yucatán Agreement), designed to contribute to the economic, social and institutional development of both regions through the financing of infrastructure programs and projects, technical assistance and trade in goods and services linked to infrastructure.

Within the framework of the Summit, negotiations were undertaken to implement four cooperation instruments: developing the institutional capacities of Mesoamerican governments for the monitoring and evaluation of the fulfillment of the Millennium Development Goals (MDG); two projects for civil protection and the development of financing schemes for dealing with emergencies and a Protocol to boost development in the region through the Mesoamerican Cooperation Program.

In their Political Dialogue, the presidents and top government officials discussed key issues for the Mesoamerican region, such as the strengthening of democratic institutions, regional security and migration. The heads of state and government of the Tuxtla Mechanism and the Chilean president issued a Joint Statement on Organized Crime and Drug Trafficking, in which they expressed their conviction that user nations should adopt more effective, drastic measures to track and cut off the money flows resulting from illegal activities. They stressed the need to reduce demand and to fight illegal arms dealing.

The leaders also agreed to continue supporting the Central American Security Strategy, its Action Plan and the regional projects designed by member countries of the Central American Integration System (SICA).

In regards to migration, members of the Tuxtla Mechanism will continue supporting efforts to deal with the challenges raised by this phenomenon and confirmed the agreements reached at the Ministerial Meeting on Transnational Organized Crime and Migrant Security held in Mexico in October 2010.The leaders and top government officials engaged in an Interactive Dialogue with CEOs from the region on the opportunities created by the Single Free Trade Agreement between Mexico and Central America, signed on 22 November. The presidents signed a declaration highlighting the importance of the passage of this Agreement.

The Tuxtla Summit was also attended by the governors of Mexican states of Puebla, Rafael Moreno Yucatán, Ivonne Ortega and Campeche, Fernando Ortega, as well as legislators from various political parties and representatives of international and regional organizations, including the President of the Inter-American Development Bank, Luis Alberto Moreno.

The presidents and top government officials issued a declaration containing the main agreements reached at the Thirteenth Tuxtla Summit. -1 1 0 40 12/8/2011 06:00:00 62 0/0/0000 00:00:00 0 0 0/0/0000 00:00:00 12/8/2011 06:00:00 0/0/0000 00:00:00 show_title= link_titles= show_intro= show_section= link_section= show_category= link_category= show_vote= show_author= show_create_date= show_modify_date= show_pdf_icon= show_print_icon= show_email_icon= language= keyref= readmore= 1 0 9 0 1284 robots= author= 4137 Grupo de mujeres “mi familia” trabajando por la comunidad de San Jose succotz grupo-de-mujeres-mi-familia-trabajando-por-la-comunidad-de-san-jose-succotz

La aldea de San José Succotz, ubicada a un costado del majestuoso rio Mopan en el distrito del Cayo, se pone de fiesta con la creación de un grupo de mujeres de esta aldea, las cuales se han reunido para participar en un curso de bordado. La ideaes mejorar las condiciones económicas de las mujeres del área.


El grupo de mujeres emprendedoras están tomando clases los días sábados y domingos desde las 2 de la tarde.Actualmente cuentan con 30 integrantes.El propósito principal del grupo es de ayudar a la mujer, desempeñando diferentes artesanías y bordados a mano.

El grupo “Mi Familia” esta dirigido por la Presidenta.- Sandra Coye, Vice-Presidenta.- Mariela Mai, Secretaria.- Flor Esmeralda Can, Vice-Secretaria.-Anselma Rosado y tesorera.- Maribel Jiménez, quienes están impulsando el potencial humano de las mujeres de San José Succotz, através de diferentes programas y manualidades.

La Presidenta Sandra Coye le dijo a el GUARDIAN que mujeres como madres solteras, amas de casa o divorciadas se ven beneficiadas con estos programas, ya que las ayudaran a sobresalir en su autoestima, pero especialmente para poder tener mejores modos de una captación económica.Dijo también que estos talleres son para cualquier mujer interesada en la aldea de San José Succotz, y que no tienen ningún costo para ingresar, solo el deseo de superación personal. -1 1 0 40 12/8/2011 06:00:00 62 0/0/0000 00:00:00 0 0 0/0/0000 00:00:00 12/8/2011 06:00:00 0/0/0000 00:00:00 show_title= link_titles= show_intro= show_section= link_section= show_category= link_category= show_vote= show_author= show_create_date= show_modify_date= show_pdf_icon= show_print_icon= show_email_icon= language= keyref= readmore= 1 0 8 0 728 robots= author= 4138 Prime Minister leaves for Miami; Deputy Prime Minister At Cop 17, Durban, South Africa prime-minister-leaves-for-miami-deputy-prime-minister-at-cop-17-durban-south-africa-

Belmopan, 5th December, 2011.
Prime Minister, the Hon. Dean Barrow, left the country on Sunday, 4th December. He is accompanying his wife, Mrs. Kim Simplis Barrow, to Miami, Florida, where Mrs. Barrow will receive medical treatment.
Prime Minister Barrow is scheduled to return to the country on Friday, 9th December.


Minister of Education and Youth, the Hon. Patrick Faber, will act as Prime Minister while Mr. Barrow is out of the country.
The Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Natural Resources and the Environment, Hon. Gaspar Vega, is representing Belize at the United Nations Climate Change Conference (COP 17) in Durban, South Africa, 3rd – 12th December. -1 1 0 40 12/8/2011 06:00:00 62 0/0/0000 00:00:00 0 0 0/0/0000 00:00:00 12/8/2011 06:00:00 0/0/0000 00:00:00 show_title= link_titles= show_intro= show_section= link_section= show_category= link_category= show_vote= show_author= show_create_date= show_modify_date= show_pdf_icon= show_print_icon= show_email_icon= language= keyref= readmore= 1 0 7 0 986 robots= author= 4139 Technological Injection in Service Sector technological-injection-in-service-sector

IDBThe Inter-American Development Bank (IDB) and the Caribbean Export Development Agency (CEDA) held a two day workshop on Monday, December 5, and Tuesday, December 6, at the Radisson to discuss policy issues related to science, technology and innovation systems in the region.


The Science, Technology and Innovation Network has been hosting dialogues since 2006. A release from IDB and CEDA states, “This December’s Caribbean dialogue is specifically responding to an interest raised at the most recent dialogue in June of 2011 in Washington, D.C., where IDB member countries agreed that innovation and competitiveness issues in firms might be unique when considered within Caribbean contexts.” According to Flora Montealegre Painter of IDB, the Science, Tehnology and Innovation Caribbean Network’s main goal is to promote the exchange of ideas and experiences among the IDB’s borrowing member countries on initiatives designed to strengthen innovation performance in Latin American and Caribbean economies. One idea that stood out is the need to develop our human resource. The network seeks to identify best policy practices for the development of “top level talent in science and technology”. This development in human resource will translate to a greater relationship between industries and science. Firms will better understand how research and development can increase productivity and competitiveness.

Mike Singh sat in the meeting as a Board Member of theCaribbean Export Development Agency and the Executive Director of BELTRAIDE. The issue most central to Belize is the expansion of broadband services to enable us to compete with the rest of the region and the world. The expansion of this service could further energize investors that are already interested in the prospect of doing business in Belize. Those include healthcare providers from abroad who are paying attention to our developing health tourism policy and business process outsourcing firms. Our information and communication technology system is vital to the success of both industries. Such improvement in our ICT system may include the introduction of Voice Over Internet Protocol VOIP. At a business forum two weeks ago, Prime Minister Barrow said that it is inevitable that VOIP services will be unleashed because the people are asking for it, and Telemedia is the people’s company. However, the sustainability of Telemedia is a priority.
More than 50 policy makers from throughout the region participated in the regional policy dialogue. -1 1 0 40 12/8/2011 06:00:00 64 Shane D. Williams 0/0/0000 00:00:00 0 0 0/0/0000 00:00:00 12/8/2011 06:00:00 0/0/0000 00:00:00 show_title= link_titles= show_intro= show_section= link_section= show_category= link_category= show_vote= show_author= show_create_date= show_modify_date= show_pdf_icon= show_print_icon= show_email_icon= language= keyref= readmore= 1 0 6 0 1338 robots= author= 4140 Flood Alleviation and Employment for Orange Walk Central flood-alleviation-and-employment-for-orange-walk-central

MayorThe work in Orange Walk seems incessant as the UDP Orange Walk Central Standard Bearer, Denni Grijalva, and the Orange Walk Town Council keep on working for betterment of the town. Most recently the work has been concentrated in areas that were flood prone and with a bit of effort and a willingness to deliver results many areas have received much needed attention.

In the area of Sylvester Street, Grenada and Bishop Martin Street, flood waters had affected residents for well over two decades.  Residences had been built and neighbourhoods developed in an area that was a natural basin for the accumulation of rain water.  While other neighbourhoods enjoyed a flood free existence those living on Sylvester and Grenada Streets were not as lucky and had to deal with flooding every rainy season.

As a result of these conditions the UDP Standard Bearer for Orange Walk Central, Denni Grijalva lobbied the Town Council and Central Government for culverts and having a record of proven ability to deliver he was assisted. One of the projects implemented was the installation of a culvert at the lowest point of the area at the Corner of Sylvester and Grenada Streets where the 36 inch culvert was laid down to carry floodwater out of the neighbourhood and into a pond located at Albert Burns.

The entire neighbourhood is in a flurry of activity as the project continues. While much of the heavy equipment is gone, workers remain to clear the smaller drains that empty into the basin, and to lay concrete for drains in between the culverts.

“The benefit is twofold”, says Mr. Grijalva.  “At the end of this project, the flooding problem that has wreaked havoc on the families in this neighbourhood will be solved.  Additionally we are providing employment in Central”.

With the support and guidance of the Orange Walk Town Council, over 50 young men and women of Orange Walk Central are now gainfully employed.

“I come from a background of building and construction”, says Denni.  “Our infrastructure is lacking, and I see the need to upgrade and where necessary, construct new drains and sidewalks.  At the same time, the immense challenges require that we employ a substantial workforce that provides the labour and talent.  This work force and talent was drawn from right here in Central.”

Mr. Samuel Torres is happy to be gainfully employed.  “This job could not have come at a better time.  I plan on paying some bills these first two weeks.  The rest will be used to repair my bathroom and for Christmas gifts for the family.  I also want to buy a baked ham and for my wife to make Relleno Negro”.

Antonio “Tongo” Coral does not have a family yet, but living expenses still need to be paid.  “Without asking my political preference, Mr. Denni gave me a job.  I want to thank him because this Christmas will be a good one for me.”

Even the Prime Minister Honourable Dean Barrow is touched by the good works taking place in Central.  The Central Government has provided an additional $20,000.00 in culverts for the constituency.  The Christmas spirit is alive in Orange Walk Central thanks to Denni Grijalva and the UDP!

-1 1 0 40 12/8/2011 06:00:00 62 0/0/0000 00:00:00 0 0 0/0/0000 00:00:00 12/8/2011 06:00:00 0/0/0000 00:00:00 show_title= link_titles= show_intro= show_section= link_section= show_category= link_category= show_vote= show_author= show_create_date= show_modify_date= show_pdf_icon= show_print_icon= show_email_icon= language= keyref= readmore= 1 0 5 0 1146 robots= author= 4141 Debate for Dunces debate-for-dunces

Not a vote has been cast and the Belize City electorate is already suffering from buyer’s remorse because of the mayoral candidates of the PUP, VIP and independent duet. If you are one of those individuals who watched Wednesday’s mayoral debate on Love TV you are probably begging back for the few minutes of your life that you wasted tuning in.


None of the candidates have a single inspiring bone in their body. The debate featured three aspiring candidates for Mayor and one who seems to be campaigning for the post of Traffic Manager. That individual receives an F for his performance on the debate and can be ruled out of the equation as of now. Of the three remaining candidates, there is one famous for his chain of juice shops. A prime time television appearance is more than he could have hoped for in his bid for mayor. It allowed him the opportunity to try and prove that he is the smartest man in Belize’s history or perhaps the world. He prides himself in the belief that he knows everything there is to know about everything. His plans to improve the city’s financial position are to pressure those who are struggling to pay their taxes; raise certain taxes and introduce new taxes. This AFRICAN immigrant wants to squeeze and SWEAT Belizeans like he does the fruits of his JUICES- every dime out. He receives an F for his performance on the debate. 

There were really only two candidates that will be named in this article, Paco Smith of the VIP and Karen Bodden of the shameless party. The fellah Smith has a really nice radio voice. He is a very articulate fellah. Unfortunately, when it comes to running a city, the silver tongued prospect proved that he doesn’t know what is black from what is white. His academic background is impressive but an educated fool he is. He offered no real ideas on how to improve the city- no Vision- no Inspiration. Without those, on Election Day he will definitely have no People. He gets an A in message delivery and an F in content. Speaking of Fs, the sick and tired lady is F squared. According to her, Belize is not a beautiful city and our children are hopeless. She condemns the council for hiring an individual to clean garbage hotspots. If there are two companies with contracts to clean why hire another, she asked. The reason another is needed is because though they receive thousands of dollars of taxpayers’ money weekly (a binding contract tattooed in by the PUP), SEL continues to neglect its duties. Bodden thinks that people will forget the rape her party committed on this city. On Election Day she will receive the message loud and clear. She may need to counsel herself after Darrell Bradley beats her like a drum. She also receives an F for her debate performance and she will receive and F on Election Day.

The final F is reserved for Love FM. That may have been the most boring debate ever. Then again maybe they can be awarded an honorary A for having exposed the Belizean public to the bunch of dunces who are putting their name against the UDP’s Darrell Bradley. -1 1 0 40 12/8/2011 06:00:00 64 Shane D. Williams 0/0/0000 00:00:00 0 0 0/0/0000 00:00:00 12/8/2011 06:00:00 0/0/0000 00:00:00 show_title= link_titles= show_intro= show_section= link_section= show_category= link_category= show_vote= show_author= show_create_date= show_modify_date= show_pdf_icon= show_print_icon= show_email_icon= language= keyref= readmore= 1 0 4 0 1189 robots= author= 4142 Darrell Bradley Participates in Women’s Department Legal Clinic darrell-bradley-participates-in-womens-department-legal-clinic

AttorneyAs part of its observance of the 16 days of activism to end domestic violence, the Women’s Department invited ten attorneys to offer free legal advice on gender-based violence and family issues. The event took place on Wednesday, December  7, and from 9a.m. to 4p.m. a steady stream of Belizean men and women entered the ITVET Conference Room to seek legal advice on various matters including domestic violence, sexual harassment, child custody, child maintenance, divorce, property rights, and legal separation among other issues.


The event offers individuals who may not otherwise be able to afford a scheduled meeting with an attorney the opportunity to meet and receive dependable legal advice. One of the attorneys who took part in the event was Darrell Bradley, Vice-President of the Bar Association. From 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. Bradley met with over a dozen individuals. He said it is important for members of the Bar Association to take part in community service projects. He was surprised that there was a gender balance in the number of individuals accessing the service. He continued, “Both men and women brought up the same concerns.” He wishes to encourage the Women’s Department to continue the good work and invites Belizeans of other professions to get on board and work to end gender based violence.

The event attracted more than 70 men and women. Other events during the 16 days of activism are self-defense sessions across the country, sexual violence forums in Corozal and Dangriga and a forum to inform single mothers of income generating opportunities available to them. -1 1 0 40 12/8/2011 06:00:00 64 Shane D. Williams 0/0/0000 00:00:00 0 0 0/0/0000 00:00:00 12/8/2011 06:00:00 0/0/0000 00:00:00 show_title= link_titles= show_intro= show_section= link_section= show_category= link_category= show_vote= show_author= show_create_date= show_modify_date= show_pdf_icon= show_print_icon= show_email_icon= language= keyref= readmore= 1 0 3 0 889 robots= author= 4143 Lizards for Cayo Central from the Cock-Mack-a-Dandy lizards-for-cayo-central-from-the-cock-mack-a-dandy

Cock-mack-a-DandyEver since he’s been dubbed the “Cock-Mack-a-Dandy” the PUP aspirant for Cayo Central has been parading around the division as if he really were the famous Belizean lizard. In fact he’s taken the name a bit too far. Over the past few days he’s been touring villages in the division telling the residents that, being a Cock-Mack-a-Dandy is not enough for him; instead he’s telling residents of the area that he will introduce a program to breed lizards in the division. Yap from one lizard wanna be to a lizard breeding program- imagine that!

A bit of advice for the “Cock-Mack-a-Dandy”- the people of Cayo Central don’t want a lizard representative or a lizard breeding program; it seems that what you are offering is a pie in the sky promise and they don’t want pie in the sky ideas of how to breed lizards. What the people of Cayo Central want is an individual with the capacity to deliver and the ability to implement programs that work. Hon. Rene Montero is that man, and already he is delivering to the people of Cayo Central. You need only to look at the various agriculture programs he’s implemented as well as the agriculture infrastructure which he’s put in place in the division and you can see what we are talking about.

-1 1 0 40 12/8/2011 06:00:00 62 0/0/0000 00:00:00 0 0 0/0/0000 00:00:00 12/8/2011 06:00:00 0/0/0000 00:00:00 show_title= link_titles= show_intro= show_section= link_section= show_category= link_category= show_vote= show_author= show_create_date= show_modify_date= show_pdf_icon= show_print_icon= show_email_icon= language= keyref= readmore= 1 0 2 0 948 robots= author= 4144 Anti-drilling Coalition falls apart anti-drilling-coalition-falls-apart

LeadersOn Thursday December 8th the Coalition to Save our Natural Heritage will be presenting a list of persons whom they claim signed a petition to not have drilling in offshore Belize as well as in protected areas. While a faction of the Coalition is moving in that direction the group and some of its stronger supporters have gone ‘cross-way’.


At a meeting held on November 30th, the division in the Coalition became clear. The meeting had been called to vote for the incorporation of the Coalition as an NGO and whether or not they should proceed to trigger its referendum. The first issue got 76% support from the membership, the Association of Protected Areas Management Organizations for its part abstained along with Program for Belize, The National Trade Union Congress of Belize and two other organizations SEA and FOSC.

On the second issue 64% of the membership voted that the organization should trigger the referendum. Abstentions came from Program for Belize, APAMO,BACONGO, NTUCB, SEA, SIWABAN FAMRACC, BELPO and FOSC.

The breakdown on the voting speaks volumes as to the level of disunity in COLA and Lisel Alamilla of the Ya’axche Conservation Trust drove that message on Channel 7’s newscast on Wednesday December 7th. She said that the Coalition is proceeding to trigger a referendum despite disagreements within the organization which is unable to have a unified position on the issue.

She went on to draw a clear line between those organizations that are Belize City based and act as advocate organizations and those that are “on the ground and in the trenches.” She explained that her organization had resigned from the Coalition earlier on since she “felt they were not being heard, that the Coalition was being hijacked and that there were people who had agendas that were not in the best interest of protected areas. Further to her organization resigning from the Coalition Alamilla explained that APAMO, an organization which the Ya’axche is a part of, resigned as a member of the executive committee of the Coalition since the Coalition was “not moving in a manner that was positive.” She added that people were making uninformed decisions and that the referendum was not legally binding. -1 1 0 40 12/8/2011 06:00:00 62 0/0/0000 00:00:00 0 0 0/0/0000 00:00:00 12/8/2011 06:00:00 0/0/0000 00:00:00 show_title= link_titles= show_intro= show_section= link_section= show_category= link_category= show_vote= show_author= show_create_date= show_modify_date= show_pdf_icon= show_print_icon= show_email_icon= language= keyref= readmore= 1 0 1 0 1239 robots= author= 4145 Five men not guilty of murder five-men-not-guilty-of-murder

After three hours 22 minutes of deliberations a jury of seven women and five men emerged from the deliberating room and announced that five en accused of murder were not guilty. The men, Edwin Flowers, aka Drive, Brandon Smith, aka Battery, Kenroy Humes, aka Beans, Deshawn Mena and Leon Gray were then all free to go.

The men had been charged after Randy Coye was killed at the Lord Ridge Cemetery on October 2, 2008.  Coye, 20, was last seen at a gathering on Pitter Street on the night of Friday, October 2.  He remained missing up until Monday, October 5 when he was found at the Lord Ridge Cemetery.At the time of the discovery of his body he was believed to have been badly beaten, and then shot.

From an account of the only witness to the crime, Emmanuel Willoughby, who was also an accomplice in the murder, young Coye died a cold death.  It was a murder that according to Emmanuel Willoughby was committed by the five accused men who were his friends. On October 8, three days after Coye’s body was found in the burial ground, Willoughby was given immunity for his testimony. He was given immunity with conditions that he speak the truth and if found lying he would be liable to be charged for his involvement.  

For four weeks, the trial was heard before Justice Adolph Lucas in the Supreme Court.  Prosecutor in the matter was the DPP herself, Cheryl Lynn-Vidal while the five accused men were represented by Anthony Sylvester and Arthur Saldivar.   Vidal’s main witness was Willoughby who gave a vivid testimony of how Coye met his death.  He said that Coye was at a Bar-B-Q gathering on Pitter Street when the men came looking for him. According to Willoughby they went to the home of Edwin Flowers where they got a gun and got into a vehicle and went in search for Coye.  Coye was captured and the group of men eventually took him to the cemetery. Once there Leon Gray hit him in the head with a sawed off shot gun. Then another began to stab him up. As he fell to the ground Kenroy Humes hit him with a bible on his head.  Willoughby also testified that someone pushed something up his anus.  He then heard Gray tell Humes to shoot him. According to Willoughby, Gray then fired a shot from the 16 gauge shot gun at Coye. The men then rode off on bicycles and headed to a vehicle.  According to Willoughby, when they all left the burial ground, Coye was lying on the ground.

In court the judge gave the jury warnings about a witness who has been given immunity and was an accomplice to the crime. Justice Lord told the jury that he must warn them that Emmanuel Willoughby, was the main and only witness in this case. He added that Emmanuel was also the only person for the prosecution who identified the five accused men as the culprits. He said that Willoughby was an accomplice and that an accomplice is a person who was a participant in a crime from the start to the finish and that an accomplice by his position is a suspect who may have a motive to give false evidence.  He further told them that if during their deliberation they find that Emmanuel Willoughby was not speaking the truth, then they must not go any further.  They must find each of the accused not guilty of the crime of murder.  He also told them as a warning that if they were not sure and that if they had doubts about the guilt of the accused men, then again, they must find each accused not guilty of the charge.

In their defense, the accused men gave dock statements where they all denied being party to the murder of Coye.  In Mena’s case, he claimed he was detained at the Queen Street Police Station on the day of the murder and later released after 48 hours for an unrelated incident. After being released he went to his mother’s home to discuss a family matter and then he later went home with his girlfriend, daughter and sister at around midnight.  He called two alibi witnesses, his mother and his girlfriend. Both testified on his behalf that Mena was in their presence so he could not have been involved in the murder.

   In the case of Humes, he also gave a dock statement where he said that he was at home sleeping with his girlfriend.  She later left for work and he was left home to care for their daughter. He called his common-law-wife as an alibi witness who came to the court and corroborated his story and added that on the day of the murder, their daughter was sick and she left her home with her father.

 Leon Gray also gave a dock statement where he said that he was at home on the day in question. His mother whom he called as his alibi witness testified that on that day, she came home and saw her son watching television with his girlfriend. They ate, took a bath and then continued to watch the television. Shortly before  nine that night, they left and went home.

The fourth accused, Brandon Smith, 25, also gave a dock statement where he told the court that he was at his grandmother’s home as he had just been released from the hospital.  He claimed he was on medication (pain killers) and that he stayed home for that whole week.  The day he decide to leave home and go to the supermarket he was detained by police.   He called his grandmother, a 70-year-old, as his alibi witness who said that her grandson had been shot in the shoulder  and was at home in bed.

 Edwin Flowers, the fifth defendant, also gave a dock statement in which he said that on that day, he was at home taking care of his daughter as his girlfriend came and dropped her off. He claimed he did not go anywhere for that entire day. He called his girlfriend and mother as alibi witnesses.  The girlfriend and mother both corroborated his story.  The girlfriend said that when she got home at 10:10 that night, Flowers was at home.  Flowers further told the court that at 3:30a.m, the next day, he got up because his mother was heading early to work.  When she left he went back to sleep.  That day he spent the day with his daughter.    He said that the police picked him up and told him that they would charge him for the crime of abetment to murder and that’s when he asked the police to please give him an identification parade and a phone call so he could call his alibi witnesses, but claimed that he was denied an ID parade.

-1 1 0 39 12/8/2011 06:00:00 62 0/0/0000 00:00:00 0 0 0/0/0000 00:00:00 12/8/2011 06:00:00 0/0/0000 00:00:00 show_title= link_titles= show_intro= show_section= link_section= show_category= link_category= show_vote= show_author= show_create_date= show_modify_date= show_pdf_icon= show_print_icon= show_email_icon= language= keyref= readmore= 1 0 9 0 952 robots= author= 4146 Extortion attempt on Rosendo Urbina’s family extortion-attempt-on-rosendo-urbinas-family

MikeHis Excellency Rosendo Urbina along with his family including his son Rosendo Jr. left the country on Wednesday evening following extortion attempts on his son Rosendo Jr. In a late evening press briefing on Wednesday, Minister of Police, Hon. Douglas Singh and Head of National Crimes Investigation Branch Mike Segura, updated the media on the extortion attempt.

According to Segura, sometime after six on Sunday evening Rosendo Urbina Jr. and his wife were leaving their residence at the Honey Camp Lagoon area when a group of at least five men pounced on them. Toting rifles, the men, wearing camouflage uniforms and masks held them at the residence’s gate. Whilst they were holding the couple at gunpoint they asked a series of questions to the couple.  No persons seemed to be in control as they were consulting amongst themselves on what to do. They did ask for Urbina’s cell phone number and proceeded to search the premises of the watchman and took a vehicle which was later recovered on Monday on one of the feeder roads in the area.

During the exchange between the assailants and Rosendo Urbina Jr. they told him that they were requiring a certain amount of money which was not disclosed to the media. The men then left in the vehicle that was in the Urbina compound.  After the assailants left, Rosendo made his way back into Orange Walk Town and immediately informed his father Rosendo Urbina Sr., UDP Standard Bearer for Orange Walk South. The Police was then involved.

According to Segura the family was then informed that based on the Modus Operandi of the assailants they were simply trying to intimidate the family into paying money. Over the period of a few hours the assailants made many phone calls to the family asking them for money which over a period of time was reducing giving the impression that they had become anxious about getting paid. It is for this reason that the Urbina family decided to leave the country until the matter is resolved.

From the police’s point of view, Segura told the press that all available tools are being used to determine who the perpetrators were. He added that they are currently looking at people who have used the same M.O. in the past. Segura said that this type of activity will simply not be tolerated. Adding to that was Hon. Douglas Singh who explained that everything will  be done to find the perpetrators. This type of activity he said leads him to believe that if it is allowed no one will be safe in Belize.

And as the police work to determine who the assailants were, the police are looking at the phone numbers that were used to contact the family. They have been able to trace one number which was purchased a few days ago. However when the agent sold the SIM card there were no particulars taken of the person purchasing and in fact the number was not registered. This says Singh is something that needs to be revisited by them once again informing the telephone providers that it is a requirement to register phone numbers when purchases are made. For his part Segura added that the latest incident points to the absolute need to have phone numbers registered.

Meanwhile, the Urbina family is offering a 50 thousand dollar reward to anyone who has information leading to the conviction of those responsible for the crime.

-1 1 0 39 12/8/2011 06:00:00 62 0/0/0000 00:00:00 0 0 0/0/0000 00:00:00 12/8/2011 06:00:00 0/0/0000 00:00:00 show_title= link_titles= show_intro= show_section= link_section= show_category= link_category= show_vote= show_author= show_create_date= show_modify_date= show_pdf_icon= show_print_icon= show_email_icon= language= keyref= readmore= 1 0 8 0 94 robots= author= 4147 Charged for snatching woman’s two gold chains charged-for-snatching-womans-two-gold-chains

ShawnPolice have arrested and charged Belize City man, 23- year-old Shawn Garbutt for snatching a woman’s two gold chains. Garbutt, an employee at CYDP, who works as a sanitation worker, was arraigned in the Belize City Magistrate’s Court on Monday December 12th on a single charge of theft.

Garbutt is accused of snatching two gold chains valued at $400 from around the neck of Nikita Perez. The incident occurred on November 17th. Garbutt appeared before Magistrate Roberto Ordonez in Court #4 where he was read the charge of theft for which he pleaded not guilty. In court he was unrepresented and Magistrate Ordonez offered him bail in the sum of $5,000 plus one surety of the same amount which he met. He is due back in Court #4 on January 9.

In a report to police, Nikita Perez stated that on November 17th, she was in the company of a female friend walking at the corner of Douglas Jones and York Street, when she was approached by a male person who had his hair braided and wore a stocking over his face. She said that the man approached her and suddenly snatched her two gold chains that were around her neck.   According to Perez, the two gold chains are valued at $400 and had on two medals.

-1 1 0 39 12/8/2011 06:00:00 62 0/0/0000 00:00:00 0 0 0/0/0000 00:00:00 12/8/2011 06:00:00 0/0/0000 00:00:00 show_title= link_titles= show_intro= show_section= link_section= show_category= link_category= show_vote= show_author= show_create_date= show_modify_date= show_pdf_icon= show_print_icon= show_email_icon= language= keyref= readmore= 1 0 7 0 93 robots= author= 4148 Man walks from attempted murder and arson charges man-walks-from-attempted-murder-and-arson-charges

GaryOn Wednesday December 7th, 37-year-old Gary Clark, appeared in Magistrate’s Court before Chief Magistrate Anne Marie Smith to answer to 2 charges of attempted murder, harm and arson. Instead of the matter proceeding in court however, the DPP’s office sent a memo where it withdrew the charges against Clark.

Exactly one year earlier on December 7th, 2010, Clark who was allegedly having difficulties in his relationship with his wife, 34-year-old Veronica Clark travelled from Belize City to La Democracia Village where he allegedly set on fire a mosquito net which was hanging over a bed where his wife and young infant child slept.  As a result the baby, 1 year old Genesis sustained burn injuries which were classified as harm.On Monday, December 13, 2010 Clark was arraign in the Belize City Magistrate’s Court where no plea was taken on the indictable matters and he was denied bail and remanded to the Belize Central Prison for more than three months where he was later granted bail on the charges. 

On appearing in Court on Wednesday he walked out the court room a free man after all charges were withdrawn from against him. The DPP presented a memo where it explained that Clark’s wife does not want any further court action in the matter. The wife had since visited the DPP’s office where she gave a further statement in which she had requested no further court action in the matter against Clark. 
 If Clark’s case had been committed to the Supreme Court for trial, he was facing a minimum of 18 years to life for attempted murder.   The other charges of harm and arson carried various other jail terms.

-1 1 0 39 12/8/2011 06:00:00 62 0/0/0000 00:00:00 0 0 0/0/0000 00:00:00 12/8/2011 06:00:00 0/0/0000 00:00:00 show_title= link_titles= show_intro= show_section= link_section= show_category= link_category= show_vote= show_author= show_create_date= show_modify_date= show_pdf_icon= show_print_icon= show_email_icon= language= keyref= readmore= 1 0 6 0 92 robots= author= 4149 More Destructive Ammunition off the City Streets more-destructive-ammunition-off-the-city-streets

AmmunicationAccording to reports from the Belize Police Department, on Monday, December 5, a concerned resident of Belize City handed over a black plastic bag to police. The bag contained several smaller bags with various types of ammunition and explosives. There were twelve rounds of 40mm ammunition, fifty-two rounds of 7.62x39mm ammunition, eighty-six rounds of .223mm ammunition and one grenade (H.E-FC 89E605063).

The 40mm rounds are military grenades used in grenade launchers. It is widely used in the US Army by combat troops against anti-personnel in exposed positions, extremely rugged terrain, dense vegetation, military operations in urban terrain (MOUT), and other tactical scenarios. Each round is extremely destructive. They are used to take down tanks. The 7.62×39mm rounds are rifle cartridges of Soviet origin. They were designed during World War II and are most commonly used in a standard AK-47.The 223mm round was developed to fit the action length of the new M16 service rifle. It is one of the most popular cartridges because of its availability. The Belize Defence Force has determined that the grenade is of South Korean origin.

Sr. Supt. Edward Broaster, Director of CYDP, presented the weapons to the media. He said it is a result of the hard work of crime fighting agencies and the great cooperation that they have fostered with members of the community that the weapons were taken off the streets. The success of the truce has made gang elements more comfortable in cooperating with law enforcement officials. On the other hand, the weapons surrendered have residents wondering what else is on the streets. It is a valid concern; however, Broaster is confident that more weapons will be handed in.
According to police, the explosive was handed over to the Belize Defence Force.

 

-1 1 0 39 12/8/2011 06:00:00 62 0/0/0000 00:00:00 0 0 0/0/0000 00:00:00 12/8/2011 06:00:00 0/0/0000 00:00:00 show_title= link_titles= show_intro= show_section= link_section= show_category= link_category= show_vote= show_author= show_create_date= show_modify_date= show_pdf_icon= show_print_icon= show_email_icon= language= keyref= readmore= 1 0 5 0 96 robots= author= 4150 Kim Brannon sentenced to life for murder kim-brannon-sentenced-to-life-for-murder

KimOn Tuesday, November 15th, 41-year-old Kim Brannon known also by the name Kim McLaughlin was convicted of the December 12, 2008 murder of her common law husband, 42-year-old Anthony Herrera aka “Antics”. Brannon chopped Herrera once while he was sleeping.

Brannon has denied the accusation despite being found guilty and when she appeared before Justice Herbert Lord on Friday December 2nd she indicated that she will be appealing her murder conviction.  Her appearance in court however was for her mitigation plea and sentencing.

In mitigation she called one character witness to speak on her behalf, Prison Officer, Agnes Nunez.  Nunez spoke well and highly of Brannon whom she described to be veryunderstanding, humble and a kind person who looks after all her fellow inmates and who cares for them when they are sick by being at their bedside. She begged the court for leniency on Brannon’s behalf.  Her attorney, Carlo Mason said that as it relates to the penalty there is not much that he can ask for since there are only two sentences that can be imposed by law for murder.    He told Justice Lord that his client surrendered herself to the mercy of the court and asked for him to impose the least possible sentence he can apply in her situation.   Justice Lord noted that the DPP did not make any application for the death penalty, because if they had, that would have had to been done before sentencing.  He then sentenced her to life imprisonment effective Tuesday, November 15, the day she was convicted of the murder. 
 
On December 13, 2008, police discovered the body of Herrera who was found lying in his bed at his home in Burrell Boom.  He had been chopped to the neck and according to Dr. Mario Estradabran, Herrera met his untimely death while asleep and he had no chance to put up a defense.   In her defense, Brannon blamed Herrera’s murder on two unknown men who came looking for weed and who found it and left but not before killing Herrera, leaving her unhurt. According to police however she confessed to committing the murder.
Brannon has 21 days from the day of conviction to appeal her case.

-1 1 0 39 12/8/2011 06:00:00 62 0/0/0000 00:00:00 0 0 0/0/0000 00:00:00 12/8/2011 06:00:00 0/0/0000 00:00:00 show_title= link_titles= show_intro= show_section= link_section= show_category= link_category= show_vote= show_author= show_create_date= show_modify_date= show_pdf_icon= show_print_icon= show_email_icon= language= keyref= readmore= 1 0 4 0 114 robots= author= 4151 Three years for wounding three-years-for-wounding-

MarkIn the early morning hours of December 23, 2010, 46-year-old Mark Conorquie, a resident of #17 Regent Street West was caught trying to steal a white van which belonged to the Government of Belize. The van had been assigned to the Human Services Department in care of Director Ava Pennill. He was unsuccessful in the attempt however as he was detained by the driver of the van, Edwardo Perez, who handed him over to the police.

On Tuesday,  December 6th Conorquie appeared before Chief Magistrate Anne Marie Smith where his trial began on charges of attempted theft and wounding.The prosecutor, Sgt. Egbert Castillo called three witnesses to the stand Edwardo Perez, Ava Pennill and WPC Cassandra O’Brien.  Within two hours the trial ended in a conviction for wounding and attempted theft.  In his defense Conorquie maintained his innocence despite the testimony of Perez and Pennill. He said he was never in the van to steal and that all he went to do in the back of the van was to sleep when he was suddenly attacked by some persons who beat him up and dragged him out of the van. He also denied ever causing any injury to Perez, the driver of the van at the time. In fact, he never addressed the charge of wounding and said he was innocent of the charges.At the end of his testimony, the Chief Magistrate Anne Marie Smith told Conorquie that she did not believe his story and found him guilty of both charges.   She further told him that Ms. Pennill came to the court and testified that when she exited the house to go to the car, she saw him going through items on the dashboard as if he was looking for something to steal.   According to Pennill when she saw Conroquie inside the van, she then yelled out for her driver who came to her aid and apprehended Conorquie who was still inside the van. Conorquie then made an attempt to run but was grabbed by the driver.  For his part Perez told the court that it was at 5:00 a.m. that morning when he heard Pennill yell out that someone was inside the van.  Perez rush out and grabbed Conorquie.  Conorquie tried to run and that’s when Perez said Conorquie bit him on his right finger then punched him in the face, bursting his lower lip.   The police was called in and WPC Cassandra O’Brien arrested and charged Conorquie for the crime of attempted theft and wounding.
At the end of the trial Chief Magistrate Smith sentenced Conorquie to three years imprisonment for wounding and cautioned and reprimanded him for the attempted theft. Conorquie who was not happy when he heard the three year jail term said to the Chief Magistrate, “You wah give me three years for wounding?”  he was then handcuffed and escorted outside the court room.

-1 1 0 39 12/8/2011 06:00:00 62 0/0/0000 00:00:00 0 0 0/0/0000 00:00:00 12/8/2011 06:00:00 0/0/0000 00:00:00 show_title= link_titles= show_intro= show_section= link_section= show_category= link_category= show_vote= show_author= show_create_date= show_modify_date= show_pdf_icon= show_print_icon= show_email_icon= language= keyref= readmore= 1 0 3 0 93 robots= author= 4152 Parolee and his friend accused of rape parolee-and-his-friend-accused-of-rape

GionAn 18-year-old Customer Care Representative of Belize City has claimed that she was the victim of rape by two men. The young woman told police that initially she had consensual sex with one of two men whom she was socializing with; however, the second man then raped her.

The young woman told police that on Thursday December 1 she was at a home on South Street socializing with parolee, Gion Bernard, 26, and his friend, 30-year-old Keyon Cleland AKA ‘Nine’. The teenager said that she willingly had sex with Bernard, but whilst inside the bedroom, ‘Nine’ opened the door with his key and entered wearing only boxers. That’s when Bernard left the room and “Nine” raped her.  She claimed that ‘nine’ also performed oral sex on her.  He then left the room and Bernard returned to the room and at this time raped her and also performed oral sex on her.    When police responded to the report of rape, the woman was at the KHMH being examined by a doctor.  She later gave police a report of the alleged double rape.

The men appeared in Magistrate’s Court on Monday December 7th where they were charged with rape before Magistrate Roberto Ordonez. In court the two men were unrepresented. No plea was taken and they were remanded to the Belize Central Prison until January 10.  Magistrate Ordonez explained to the men that at that time bail will be considered on their behalf.  In court, Cleland showed the court a copy of an alleged caution statement he gave to police on the matter while Bernard claimed he gave police no caution statement but yet he was given a copy of what police say is a caution statement he gave them.   The magistrate told them that the documents they have they should keep as evidence in their case but that at this time he cannot do anything with them.  

Gion Bernard was recently released from prison on parole.  He had one year remaining of a jail term he was serving.   Keyon Cleland claimed he is innocent of the crime and said he would not hide his face when he was being escorted to the Belize Central Prison.

-1 1 0 39 12/8/2011 06:00:00 62 0/0/0000 00:00:00 0 0 0/0/0000 00:00:00 12/8/2011 06:00:00 0/0/0000 00:00:00 show_title= link_titles= show_intro= show_section= link_section= show_category= link_category= show_vote= show_author= show_create_date= show_modify_date= show_pdf_icon= show_print_icon= show_email_icon= language= keyref= readmore= 1 0 2 0 88 robots= author= 4153 Acquitted of Rape acquitted-of-rape

RichardRichard Russell, a resident of Central American Boulevard was acquitted of Rape when he appeared for trial at the Supreme Court on Tuesday, December 6.

On September 5, 2011 a 16-year-old high school student accused him of raping her, but in court on Tuesday, the 19-year- old mother of a nine month old baby girl took the stand and told the court that she does not want to proceed in the matter anymore.After she stated her name to the court the young woman with tear filled eyes and a trembling mouth told the court, “I don’t want to proceed with this matter.”   Prosecutor Smith asked her if she had a reason why and she said no, and just nodded her head.

Justice Herbert Lord then asked her once again if she was certain that she did not want the case to continue and that’s when she said yes, she does not want the case to continue. With that the prosecutor, Sheneiza Smith could not proceed any further and made an application to the court in which she said that the victim in this matter does not want anything and in light of that, the crown is compelled to offer no further evidence in the matter.

 Upon hearing this, Justice Lord then addressed the jury of nine persons, five men and four women instructing them to find the accused not guilty of the charge of rape since no evidence came before the court to prove the charge. Russell whose attorney was not present was told he was a free man and he left the courtroom immediately.  

On September 5th, 2008 the young woman, at the time 16-year-old, had told police, at about 6:30 p.m., she was walking on Simon Lamb Street between Freetown and Kelly Streets, when a car pulled up beside her. An occupant of the car dragged her inside then drove off with her.  She was taken to a green house on Antelope Street Extension where she claimed the accused raped her. At the time of the incident, Russell was 27 he is now 30. 

-1 1 0 39 12/8/2011 06:00:00 62 0/0/0000 00:00:00 0 0 0/0/0000 00:00:00 12/8/2011 06:00:00 0/0/0000 00:00:00 show_title= link_titles= show_intro= show_section= link_section= show_category= link_category= show_vote= show_author= show_create_date= show_modify_date= show_pdf_icon= show_print_icon= show_email_icon= language= keyref= readmore= 1 0 1 0 73 robots= author= 4154 Tilapia Training Workshop tilapia-training-workshop

WorkshopThe Fisheries Department conducted a two-day Tilapia Training Workshop on November 30 to December 01, 2011 at the Victoria Hotel in Orange Walk Town. The training was attended by 26 farmers from both the Orange Walk and Corozal Districts. The Director of Extension – Mr. Roberto Harisson of the Ministry of Agriculture & Fisheries was present for the launching of the ceremony. The Republic of China (Taiwan) Mission which is based in Central Farm participated in the event by providing the audience with a presentation on the tilapia industry in Taiwan.


The main objective of the workshop was to provide technical training to those farmers already engaged in tilapia production and also to encourage those who have expressed an interest. On the first day, farmers were provided with technical presentations on the husbandry and management aspects involved in fish farming with emphasis on tilapia production. The second day included a field tour to two tilapia farms which included Mr. Immanuel Meza’s farm near Caledonia Village and Mr. JacoboWeib’s farm in Shipyard Community.

During the two-day workshop, various constraints affecting the further expansion of small scale aquaculture were discussed and recommendations will be forwarded to the Ministry of Agriculture & Fisheries for further consideration. The key issues discussed were the rising cost of fish feeds, the need to stimulate the market and credit facilities. At the end of the workshop, participants received a CD with information and two fish farming manuals.

The Fisheries Department will continue to organize similar workshops in the other Districts. The outputs from these workshops will further assist the Fisheries Department in developing a five year National Tilapia Development Plan. -1 1 0 59 12/8/2011 06:00:00 62 0/0/0000 00:00:00 0 0 0/0/0000 00:00:00 12/8/2011 06:00:00 0/0/0000 00:00:00 show_title= link_titles= show_intro= show_section= link_section= show_category= link_category= show_vote= show_author= show_create_date= show_modify_date= show_pdf_icon= show_print_icon= show_email_icon= language= keyref= readmore= 1 0 5 0 274 robots= author= 4155 Mr. Peetaz Brokdong Bram 2011 mr-peetaz-brokdong-bram-2011

In an effort to bring back the ‘Krismus Bram’ from yester years, Black Orchid Resort in Burrell Boom will vibrate this Saturday December 10th, 2011 with the sounds of Brokdong Music.


NICH through the Institute of Creative Arts presents this year’s Mr. Peetaz Brokdong Bram ; named for our undisputed King of Brokdong, Mr. Wilfred Peters, who for decades took us back to the days of the mahogany loggers thrilling Belizeans with the spine-tingling sounds of his accordion.

   The ‘Bram Session’ of the event will include from up North, Robert Usher and the Youth Connection Band; from the South, Bredda David and the Tribal Vibes, and Leela Vernon; from the east, Sommerville, Dawgie, Mr. Peetaz Boom and Chime Band; and from the west Sam Harris and the World Culture Band.  Buses will shuttle those who wish to attend from the Burrell Boom cut off and from Hattieville every hour starting at 2:00 p.m.  Transportation to the event will be free of cost. Entrance fee to the day event is $5 adults, children free and for the night event is $10 adults and children $5; food and drinks will be on sale. -1 1 0 59 12/8/2011 06:00:00 62 0/0/0000 00:00:00 0 0 0/0/0000 00:00:00 12/8/2011 06:00:00 0/0/0000 00:00:00 show_title= link_titles= show_intro= show_section= link_section= show_category= link_category= show_vote= show_author= show_create_date= show_modify_date= show_pdf_icon= show_print_icon= show_email_icon= language= keyref= readmore= 1 0 4 0 142 robots= author= 4156 Belize Department of Civil Aviation Website belize-department-of-civil-aviation-website

The Government of Belize, through the Ministry of Tourism, Civil Aviation and Culture, is pleased to announce the launching of a new website for the Department of Civil Aviation – ww.civilaviation.gov.bz .


The website is intended to provide an overview of the role, functions and responsibilities of the Belize Department of Civil Aviation, to provide necessary information and to facilitate the online completion and download of forms and applications. Civil aviation legislation and regulations are also available on the website. It is expected that this website will offer its products and services to the public and aviation industry in an expeditious, efficient and cost effective manner.

The website is also designed to assist with information dissemination to allow the public and the aviation industry the ease and convenience of web-based communications and transactional capabilities.
This is another demonstration of the Government of Belize and the Ministry of Tourism, Civil Aviation and Culture to strengthen the effectiveness and efficiency of its operations and to provide enhanced services. -1 1 0 59 12/8/2011 06:00:00 62 0/0/0000 00:00:00 0 0 0/0/0000 00:00:00 12/8/2011 06:00:00 0/0/0000 00:00:00 show_title= link_titles= show_intro= show_section= link_section= show_category= link_category= show_vote= show_author= show_create_date= show_modify_date= show_pdf_icon= show_print_icon= show_email_icon= language= keyref= readmore= 1 0 3 0 371 robots= author= 4157 FFB Elections for Belmopan football district ffb-elections-for-belmopan-football-district

(December 7, 2011)
Elections for the Belmopan Football Association were held on Sunday, December 4th at 11:00 am at the FFB Office. The elections were carried out by the Electoral Committee. The National Sports Council was represented by Mr. Robert Allen.
Elected to serve on the Belmopan FA Executive Committee are the following individuals:
Chairman Marlon Tillett
Vice-Chairman Josue Rivera
Member Abel Garcia
Guillermo Ico
Ismael Chuc
Elections for the Toledo Football Association will be held on Thursday, December 8th at 7:30 pm at the Julian Cho Technical High School. The list of candidates for elections is the following:
Chairman Cecil Tillett
Eric Lopez
Vice-Chairman Wallace Mahler
Allen Genus
Members Carlos Galvez
Waylon Parham
Regino Hernandez
Santos Garcia
Leopoldo Benguche
Donald Craig
The elections are for one (1) Chairman, one (1) Vice-Chairman, and three (3) members.
Press Release

-1 1 0 59 12/8/2011 06:00:00 62 0/0/0000 00:00:00 0 0 0/0/0000 00:00:00 12/8/2011 06:00:00 0/0/0000 00:00:00 show_title= link_titles= show_intro= show_section= link_section= show_category= link_category= show_vote= show_author= show_create_date= show_modify_date= show_pdf_icon= show_print_icon= show_email_icon= language= keyref= readmore= 1 0 2 0 107 robots= author= 4158 Traffic mishap claims life of Wayne Williams traffic-mishap-claims-life-of-wayne-williams

WayneWayne Williams, a 46-year-old employee of the Central Building Authority, who was residing in Belmopan, has been confirmed as deceased by police after he ended up in a fatal traffic accident between mile 28 and 29 of the Western Highway on Tuesday at around 5:15 p.m.


According to police, Williams was driving in his white Toyota Tacoma 4-door pick, and he was on his way to Belmopan. Initial investigations revealed that a water bowser was parked on the right side of the road heading to Belmopan. The truck apparently did not have on any lights and Williams came up on it suddenly. In order to avoid a collision with the bowser he swerved into the opposite lane where a bus was heading in the opposite direction.

Williams then hit a West-Line Bus coming in the opposite direction, heading toward Belize City. The right side of his vehicle slammed into the bus in a head-on collision.

The bus was being driven by Stanley Ramclam, a resident of Santa Barbara Street, Belize City, and it was occupied with 20 passengers.

Williams' Tacoma was extensively damaged, and he succumbed to injuries he received from the accident. His body was transported to the Karl Heusner Memorial Hospital, where he was pronounced dead-on-arrival. He was the father of a very young baby boy, and a husband. He also worked very closely with Hon. Melvin Hulse, Minister of NEMO and Transport in the last three years. Most recently he was appointed as the Director of the Central Building Authority. -1 1 0 59 12/8/2011 06:00:00 63 0/0/0000 00:00:00 0 0 0/0/0000 00:00:00 12/8/2011 06:00:00 0/0/0000 00:00:00 show_title= link_titles= show_intro= show_section= link_section= show_category= link_category= show_vote= show_author= show_create_date= show_modify_date= show_pdf_icon= show_print_icon= show_email_icon= language= keyref= readmore= 1 0 1 0 232 robots= author= 4159 Central wins most gold at 2011 Special Olympics central-wins-most-gold-at-2011-special-olympics

JameliaBelize City, Saturday, December 3, 2011
Athletes with intellectual or physical impairments from the districts of Belize and Cayo topped the medal count when Special Olympics Belize hosted its 8th annual National Games at the M.C.C. Grounds on Saturday, December 3. The Games, which included track and field events, as well as the five a side football games, was contested by teams from the North, Central and South regions of Belize.  Over 100 athletes participated in the day event. The  Stann Creek and Toledo districts were 2nd in the medal count and Corozal and Orange Walk ranked 3rd.


The 8th Annual National Games started with a Torch Run at 8:30 am.

Orange Walk’s Vinette Galvez won gold in the 30m walk in 5-7 age groups, while Amelia of Toledo took silver, and Orange Walk’s Brianne Chavarria took the bronze. Cayo’s Carlicia Hyde was 4th.

Corozal’s Oliver Coba won gold in the 30m walk in 5-7 age groups, while Corozal’s Jaleel Hamilton took silver, Cayo’s Karim McNichol won bronze and Stann Creek’s Rodel Tasher was 4th.

Belize district’s Jaime Muschamp won gold in the 60m walk for girls in 8-10 age group, while Orange Walk’s Laisha Bobadilla took silver, and Toledo’s Brenda Cucul won bronze. Corozal’s Shadelly Sanchez was 4th, Kenisha Eman - 5th and Cayo’s Kera Smith - 6th.

Stann Creek’s Isaiah Gentle won gold in the 60m walk, while Toledo’s Adrian Parham took silver, and Corozal’s Jaser Cob - the bronze. Sandro Cob was fourth and Xander Velasquez – fifth.

Cayo’s Anika Lewis won gold in the 80m walk for girls 11-13, while Naila Matuz won silver, and Punta Gorda Jarumi Lopez took the bronze. Orange Walk’s Elizannie Reyes was 4th, Belize district’s Kaitlyn Guzman was 5th and Felicia Cherrington - 6th.

Toledo’s Randall Winwright won gold in the 80m boys’ walk, Belize district’s James Jenkins took the silver, and Larry Chi – bronze. Rigel Domingues was 4th, Michael Flores – 5th and Marcel Lucas – 6th.

Corozal’s Oliver Coba won gold in the 30m run, while Rodel Tasher took silver, and Jaleel Hamilton – bronze.

Jaime Muschamp won gold in the 60m sprint for girls in the 8-10 age group, while Stann Creek’s Rondine Tasher won silver, and Shantel Roland – bronze. Sheeny came in fourth and Laisha Bobadilla was fifth.
Rodel Tasher won gold in the boys’ 60m sprint with Cyril Blanco taking silver, and Corozal’s Jaser Cob - bronze, Xander Velasquez was 4th.

Belize district’s Ebony Gordon won gold the 80m sprint for girls in the 11-13 age group, while Corozal’s Rosa Matuz won silver, and Elizannie Reyes - bronze. Belize district’s Felicia Cherrington was 4th, Cayo’s Ariel Bradley – 5th, and Christine Lewis - 6th.

Toledo’s Ashton Bowden won gold in the 80m sprint for boys’ girls in the 11-13 age group while Santos Flores took silver, James Jenkins won the bronze. Christopher Miller finished 4th, Theodore Jex - 5th and Imer Cantun – 6th.

Toledo’s Jamelia Hynes won gold in the 80m sprint for girls in the 14-16 age group, while Belize district’s Pricilla took silver, and Orange Walk’s Eliziannie Reyes - bronze. Kaitlyn Guzman ran 4th, Jarumi Lopez – 5th and Corozal’s Evelyn Che – 6th.

Belize district’s Tremaine Vernon won gold in the 80m sprint for boys in the 14-16 age group, while Stann Creek’s Jamal Lorenzo took silver, and James Jenkins - bronze. Brian Leslie ran 4th.

Jamelia Hynes won her 2nd gold in the 100m open sprint, with Ebony Gordon taking silver and Belize district’s Lucilla – bronze. Jarumi Lopez was 4th and Evelyn Che – 5th.

Tremaine Vernon won his 2nd gold in the 100m sprint while Jamal Lorenzo took silver and Toledo’s Norman Cucul - bronze. James Jenkins ran 4th and Cayo’s Marco Domingo – 5th.

Stann Creek’s Cyril Martinez threw the shot 8.40 meters to win gold in the shot put, Belize district’s Raheem Jones threw 6.10m for silver and Norman Cucul threw 5.30m to claim the bronze. Belize district’s Marcel Lucas threw 4.19m for 4th place. Evelyn Che threw 3.26m to win gold while Corozal’s Seleni Magana won silver at 2.93m.

In the open shot put, Jamal threw 7.45 m to win gold, David Bowen of Belize district won silver with a throw of 7.23m, and Ernesto took the bronze with a throw of 1.65m.

The South’s Jamelia Hynes also won gold in the long jump, with a jump of 4.78m, Jaime Muschamp took the silver at 3.59m, while Felicia Cherrington cleared 3.27m for the bronze. Kaitlyn Guzman was 4th. Orange Walk’s Christine Rhaburn won gold in the long jump for girls 17 and over category.

Belize district’s Philip Meighan won gold in the long jump with a jump of 5.02 meters, while David Andrews hopped 4.25m for silver, and Clayton Fitzgibbons jumped 3.71m for bronze.

Toledo’s Brenda Cucul won gold in the baseball throw for girls in the 8-10 age group with a throw of 58.8ft. Corozal’s Laisha Briceno threw 37 ft for the silver and Laisha Bobadilla threw 27 ft for the bronze.

Miguel Gongora won gold in the baseball throw at 137 ft, while Daijan Daniels threw 110ft for the silver and the south’s Max threw 84 ft for the bronze. Corozal’s Jaser Cob threw 81 ft.

Belize district’s Sylvan Lonaves won the gold in softball throw for boys in the 11-13 age group with a throw of 181 ft, while Ashton Bowden won silver for the south at 175 ft, and Stann Creek’s Michael Flores took the bronze at 162.9 ft.

Belize district’s Marie Jacobs won gold with a throw of 108 ft, while Elizannie Reyes took the silver at 93.3 ft and Belize district’s Ebony Gordon won bronze at 89.3ft.

The Belize district girls: Ebony Gordon, Jaime Muschamp, Kaitlyn Guzman and Yolanda won the gold in the 4x100m relas, while the South’s Melanie Francis, Jarumi Lopez, Chistine lewis and Jamilia Hynes took the silver. Rosa Matuz, Dalia Martinez, Naila Matuz and Evelyn Che of the north won the bronze.

The Belize district boys also won gold in the 4x100m with Glen Bowen, David Bowman, and David Andrews and Jamal Cherrington ran the anchor leg. The southern boys took the silver, and the north - bronze.
The southern boys also won gold in the five-a-side football competition, with a 6-1 win over the Belize district boys and a 5-1 win over the Orange Walk boys’. The Belize district boys won silver by a 7-4 win over the Orange Walk boys in which David Andrews scored a hat trick and Philip Meighan scored 2 goals. The Orange Walk boys settled for the bronze.

The goal of Special Olympics is to provide physical exercise and athletic competitions for all persons with intellectual disabilities. The committee thanks its invited guests as well as the sponsors who through their generous donations made it possible to have been a great success. Sponsoring this year’s event was SMART, Social Security, Atlantic Bank, The Deputy Prime Minister, Barrow and Williams, The Belize Bank, San Isidro Construction Centre, Cuello’s Distillery, La Popular Bakery, Crystal Refreshing Water, Caribbean Chicken.

-1 1 0 41 12/8/2011 06:00:00 62 0/0/0000 00:00:00 0 0 0/0/0000 00:00:00 12/8/2011 06:00:00 0/0/0000 00:00:00 show_title= link_titles= show_intro= show_section= link_section= show_category= link_category= show_vote= show_author= show_create_date= show_modify_date= show_pdf_icon= show_print_icon= show_email_icon= language= keyref= readmore= 1 0 3 0 314 robots= author= 4160 Wesley College vs. St. Catherine for basketball showdown wesley-college-vs-st-catherine-for-basketball-showdown

SCA'sThe Central Region Secondary Schools Basketball Competition will enter its championship round at the Belize City Centre on Thursday December 8, 2011, with the first game of the best of three series in both the male and female competition.


In the female game, St. Catherine Academy will go up against Wesley College, and in the male game, it will be the defending champion Sadie Vernon Technical High School against St. John’s College.

In the female semi-finals game 1 played on Monday December 5, St. Catherine Academy eliminated defending champions Gwen Lizarraga High School by the score of 19-15. The top scorer for St. Catherine Academy was Gilda Estrada with 11 points, and for Gwen Lizarraga the top scorer was Deandra Coote with 5 points.

In the male semi-finals game 1, St. John’s College eliminated Nazarene High School by the score of 62-57. The top scorers for St. John’s College were Devin Daly with 24 points and Tarique Middleton with 10 points. For Nazarene High School, the top scorers were Alejandro Baptist with 20 points and Anthony Neal with 12 points.

On Tuesday, December 6, in the second semi-finals game in the female competition, Wesley College eliminated Anglican Cathedral College by the score of 29-8. The top scorer for Wesley College was Genae Samuels with 11 points and the top scorer for Anglican Cathedral College was Janelle Grinage with 8 points.

In the male game, Sadie Vernon Technical eliminated Wesley College by the score of 79-65. The top scorers for Sadie Vernon Technical were Kashief Thomas with 42 points and Andrew Ortiz with 11 points. Meanwhile, the top scorers for Wesley College were Brian White with 22 points, Raheem Staine with 14 points and Welton Franklin with 11 points.

In the first two games of the Quarter Final Round that was played on Thursday December 1, St. John’s College eliminated Canaan Seventh Day Adventist High School by the score of 99-42. The top scorers for St. John’s College were Tarique Middleton and Devin Daly with 20 points each, Kyle Middleton with 18 points, Alex Ellis with 13 points and Karod Pitts with 12 points each.

For Canaan Seventh Day Adventist, the top scorer was Winston Reynolds with 12 points.

In the second game of the evening, Wesley College eliminated Anglican Cathedral College by the score of 50-25. The top scorer for Wesley College was Brian White with 12 points. For Anglican Cathedral College, the top scorer was Keron Moss with 10 points.

On Friday, December 2, in the first of two games played, Nazarene High School eliminated Edward P. Yorke High School by the score of 71-66. The top scorers for Nazarene High School were Anthony Neal with 21 points, Taulib Marin with 14 points and Alejandro Baptist with 13 points.

In the second game, Sadie Vernon Technical eliminated Excelsior High School by the score of 96-45. The top scorers for Sadie Vernon Technical were Lincey Lopez with 22 points, Kashief Thomas with 15 points, and Deon Roches with 14 points. Meanwhile, the top scorer for Excelsior was Hayword Hulse with 25 points. -1 1 0 41 12/8/2011 06:00:00 62 0/0/0000 00:00:00 0 0 0/0/0000 00:00:00 12/8/2011 06:00:00 0/0/0000 00:00:00 show_title= link_titles= show_intro= show_section= link_section= show_category= link_category= show_vote= show_author= show_create_date= show_modify_date= show_pdf_icon= show_print_icon= show_email_icon= language= keyref= readmore= 1 0 2 0 109 robots= author= 4161 Interoffice softball heats up in Belize City interoffice-softball-heats-up-in-belize-city

Police’sThe X Interoffice Softball Competition that is currently being played at Rogers Stadium in Belize City continues to heat up with some exciting games in the competition.


On Monday December 5, 2011, Education blasted Belize Water Services. one of two new entrants in this year’s, competition by the score of 25-5. Education scored 9 runs in the 1st inning, and then added 2 in the 2nd and 14 more in the 3rd inning for the victory.  The winning pitcher was Adrianna Hernandez and the losing pitcher was Aislyn Humes.

On Saturday December 3, in the first of three games played, Babba Shap Kit Kat found its playmate when it upended KHMH by the score of 22-15. In game two, Education continued on its winning path when it defeated the upstart Tuff “E” Nuff Tours by the score of 18-4. The winning pitcher was Joel Wade and the losing pitcher was Kamira Black.

In the final game of the day, Police disconnected the pipes of Belize Water Services and flooded it by the score of 25-1. The winning pitcher was Lenora Morales and the losing pitcher was Andrew “Pampo” Young.
On Friday December 2, in game one, Kit Kat Baaba Shap defeated Belize Water Services by the score of 20-5. The winning pitcher was Jumoko Castro and the losing pitcher was Nicolyn Parks.

In game two, Police defeated Telemedia by the score of 10-2. Police scored 4 runs in the top of the 1st inning off Telemedia’s starter and loser Francis Usher who had a rough start. Usher settled down after that and gave up 1 more run in the 3rd inning before he departed in favour of Shanti Roches. The winning pitcher for the Police was Lenora Morales.

In the game played on Wednesday November 30, Tuff “E” Nuff tours won over KHMH by the score of 11-4. The winning pitcher was Rico Black and the losing pitcher was Arlette Castillo. -1 1 0 41 12/8/2011 06:00:00 62 0/0/0000 00:00:00 0 0 0/0/0000 00:00:00 12/8/2011 06:00:00 0/0/0000 00:00:00 show_title= link_titles= show_intro= show_section= link_section= show_category= link_category= show_vote= show_author= show_create_date= show_modify_date= show_pdf_icon= show_print_icon= show_email_icon= language= keyref= readmore= 1 0 1 0 75 robots= author= 4162 BTL – Profits up, costs down btl--profits-up-costs-down

BTLBelize Telemedia Limited will be holding its 5th Annual General Meeting on Thursday December 15th at the Princess Hotel and Casino. For the company and its shareholders, it will be a good day as the company is boasting that it has increased its earnings and cut down on costs. The company will also make presentations that show expansion in services for customers.


The director’s report states that “In this fiscal year ended March 31, 2011, net income increased by $8.6 million or 38% to $31.3 million from $22.7 million recorded in the previous year. This resulted in earnings per share increasing to 63 cents from 46 cents per share from the previous year.”  The figures show that the company achieved a 12% return on equity, which is an increase of 2% over the previous year.

While the profits were up and share earnings were up, the company is reporting that expenses are down. Net financial costs decreased by 1.9 million. This was as a result of BTL not paying interest costs for a US 22.5 million dollar loan, which the previous board borrowed from Belize Bank (Turks and Caicos) now the British Caribbean Bank Ltd. That loan had been used to purchase shares in Telemedia which was held by the Royal Bank of Trinidad and Tobago. According to the director’s report, the company received legal advice which showed that the transaction was unlawful therefore no payment was made to service the loan. A claim was filed on June 4th, 2011 seeking a declaration that the loan was in fact null and void.

In the legal arena, the company also filed a claim of BZ$21 million against the former Board of Directors of BTL for wrongful acts in connection with the sale of BTL’s subsidiary, Great Belize Productions Limited.

As the company finds itself in a financially sustainable footing, it is also offering expanded services to the consumers. Notably the company has invested in 17 new sites across the country, expanding coverage. It also boasts the only nationwide fiber optic network. These accomplishments and others will be highlighted at the AGM.

BTL was acquired by the Government of Belize on August 25th, 2009. At the time it held 94.5% of the shares of the company. In October 2010, shares were 44.5% of shares in the company were offered to the public, 606 persons opted to purchase shares. At the closure of the sale on March 31, 2011, the Government owned 71.4% of the shares of the company. -1 6 0 54 12/15/2011 06:00:00 62 0/0/0000 00:00:00 0 0 0/0/0000 00:00:00 12/15/2011 06:00:00 0/0/0000 00:00:00 show_title= link_titles= show_intro= show_section= link_section= show_category= link_category= show_vote= show_author= show_create_date= show_modify_date= show_pdf_icon= show_print_icon= show_email_icon= language= keyref= readmore= 1 0 1 0 4169 robots= author= 4163 Move or Lose - Francis Fonseca will not run in Freetown – he’s looking for a safe division move-or-lose-francis-fonseca-will-not-run-in-freetown--hes-looking-for-a-safe-division

FrancisFrancis Fonseca is looking for somewhere to run after it has been confirmed that Lee Mark Chang will be thrashing him in the upcoming General Elections. He first had his eyes set on Caribbean Shores, but Weedy stood his ground and told him he can’t have it. It was a great spectacle, which unraveled earlier this week when Anthony Mahler said he would not be giving up the Caribbean Shores Division. Apparently, Mahler got wind that Fonseca was aiming for his division and decided to stand against it.


He claims that it is Lisa Shoman, who is looking to take his seat, however, PUP inside sources have it that it was Fonseca, who was actually looking to go into the division and displace him. To save face, he blamed Shoman as the one who was trying to ‘jack’ his constituency. Nonetheless, Fonseca seeing that Weedy would not topple that easily, quickly began to look for an alternative.

Best information suggests that, in an effoart to have a PUP leader in the house after the elections are over, Said Musa is willing to step aside in Fort George to have Francis run in that constituency. It appears that the PUP thinks this is a safe seat for them and they are hoping that when the elections are called Francis will be able to slip in there and win the elections. Having the history he has however, that is just wishful thinking. As a matter of fact, even if Said Musa runs in that division he stands a very small chance of winning.

-2 6 0 53 12/15/2011 06:00:00 62 0/0/0000 00:00:00 0 0 0/0/0000 00:00:00 12/15/2011 06:00:00 0/0/0000 00:00:00 show_title= link_titles= show_intro= show_section= link_section= show_category= link_category= show_vote= show_author= show_create_date= show_modify_date= show_pdf_icon= show_print_icon= show_email_icon= language= keyref= readmore= 1 0 0 0 1 robots= author= 4164 Move or Lose - Francis Fonseca will not run in Freetown – he’s looking for a safe division move-or-lose-francis-fonseca-will-not-run-in-freetown--hes-looking-for-a-safe-division

FrancisFrancis Fonseca is looking for somewhere to run after it has been confirmed that Lee Mark Chang will be thrashing him in the upcoming General Elections. He first had his eyes set on Caribbean Shores, but Weedy stood his ground and told him he can’t have it. It was a great spectacle, which unraveled earlier this week when Anthony Mahler said he would not be giving up the Caribbean Shores Division. Apparently, Mahler got wind that Fonseca was aiming for his division and decided to stand against it.


He claims that it is Lisa Shoman, who is looking to take his seat, however, PUP inside sources have it that it was Fonseca, who was actually looking to go into the division and displace him. To save face, he blamed Shoman as the one who was trying to ‘jack’ his constituency. Nonetheless, Fonseca seeing that Weedy would not topple that easily, quickly began to look for an alternative.

Best information suggests that, in an effoart to have a PUP leader in the house after the elections are over, Said Musa is willing to step aside in Fort George to have Francis run in that constituency. It appears that the PUP thinks this is a safe seat for them and they are hoping that when the elections are called Francis will be able to slip in there and win the elections. Having the history he has however, that is just wishful thinking. As a matter of fact, even if Said Musa runs in that division he stands a very small chance of winning.

-1 6 0 53 12/15/2011 06:00:00 62 0/0/0000 00:00:00 0 0 0/0/0000 00:00:00 12/15/2011 06:00:00 0/0/0000 00:00:00 show_title= link_titles= show_intro= show_section= link_section= show_category= link_category= show_vote= show_author= show_create_date= show_modify_date= show_pdf_icon= show_print_icon= show_email_icon= language= keyref= readmore= 1 0 2 0 4300 robots= author= 4165 KHMH and Reporter on collision course khmh-and-reporter-on-collision-course

HarryThe Karl Heusner Memorial Hospital and the Reporter Newspaper are heading to a legal collision course following a headline article in the newspaper last week. The article alleged wrongdoing at the hospital under the headline “KHMH Wasting Money?” The article attracted the ire of KHMH’s management and the Chief Executive Officer wrote the newspaper a letter in which it took offence to the article (see below).


There was no apology forthcoming from the newspaper and on December 8th, a letter from the Solicitor General’s office formally requested the apology. Still, the newspaper would not apologize; the situation has been stepped a notch and the matter will invariably end up in court as the KHMH will be proceeding with a suit against the newspaper.


KHMH wasting money?

The Editor         December 2, 2011.
Reporter Press
Dear Sir:

Re:  KHMH wasting Money?

It is extremely disappointing to see your newspaper, which I generally hold in high esteem, run a headline story with the above caption [Vol. 44, No. 48; Sunday December 4, 2011] written by a reporter with an obvious axe to grind.  We are aware also that the misinformation presented in your article has been placed on offer to the media by a disgruntled ex-employee seeking to discredit the institution and that a similar story ran in the Independent Newspaper, a decidedly less credentialed news source, last week.

No one from The Reporter has contacted my office to attempt to verify any part of this story prior to going to print.   As Editor, you have a responsibility to ensure that your staff act professionally and carry out proper investigative journalism before allowing potentially slanderous material on its pages. 

ThisKHMH Administration has spent the last three years cleaning up the mess left by its predecessors and putting in place financial systems to ensure transparency and good fiduciary practice.  We have eliminated many middle men and other players with conflicts of interest, which did not serve the institution and sought to do business directly with authorized suppliers, both local and foreign, whenever possible.

In this regard, we have put in place policies and procedures for purchasing and inventory control aimed at ensuring best practice and value for money.  These include vetting of medical, technical and pharmaceutical purchases by our professional staff, expanding our vendor base and utilizing competitive price reviews prior to purchasing.  Further to this, we have set up an internal audit unit and recently concluded the first ever complete fixed asset count at the hospital.

None of this has been lost on our external auditors, whose annual audit reports have reflected this continuous improvement in financial accountability at the KHMH, most recently at October 2011, which has been the best one yet.

The ex-employee mentioned above has been put on notice that if he persists in attempting to falsely discredit the KHMH Administration, it will have legal repercussions.  Through this medium, I am advising The Reporter that the same applies in this matter.

Sincerely,
Dr. Francis G. Longsworth
Chief Executive Officer

-1 6 0 53 12/15/2011 06:00:00 62 0/0/0000 00:00:00 0 0 0/0/0000 00:00:00 12/15/2011 06:00:00 0/0/0000 00:00:00 show_title= link_titles= show_intro= show_section= link_section= show_category= link_category= show_vote= show_author= show_create_date= show_modify_date= show_pdf_icon= show_print_icon= show_email_icon= language= keyref= readmore= 1 0 1 0 3852 robots= author= 4166 Who Pays the Piper? who-pays-the-piper

Those pushing the homophobic agenda have expressed outrage that foreign governments want to use their economic power to influence Belize’s position on human rights issues.  They express no similar reservations about the support that they get from foreign groups such as right wing Christian organizations in the US, who are financing their activities.  Running a T.V. station costs money and those interests that keep Plus TV on the air will do so only if the station’s content is in line with the philosophy of its funders.  No doubt the hysteria expressed by Plus TV wins foreign brownie points and is good for its bottom line.  The same is true for the Catholic Family and Human Rights Institute that funds the mission of Mariah Zabaneh and others who are attempting to radicalize the focus of the Catholic Church in Belize.  These foreign funded zealots have been extremely successful in pushing the mainstream churches in Belize to become part of the radical lynch mob for fear of being seen as “soft” on social issues.

Those pushing the homophobic agenda are presumptuous at the very least when they pontificate about homosexuality and spread disinformation based on their opinions dressed up as facts.  Their most serious untruth is that sexual orientation is a choice as if such a choice was on the same level as choosing which colour shirt to wear.  If they would take the time to actually listen to members of sexual minorities they would understand that most realized at a very early age that they were different.   In very few cases could this feeling be blamed on incidents of prior sexual abuse.  The only choice these people have to make is whether to suppress who they are and live a life of denial and pretence or to accept themselves for whom they are and hope that others would do the same.  Whether sexual orientation is influenced by one’s genes or environment or a mixture of both is irrelevant at this point because it is too late to change the circumstances anyway. If one or more genes are ever shown to be a factor in sexual orientation, would that mean that carriers of these genes should not be allowed to have children?  Alternately, if a test on a fetus for such genes were possible would it be morally right to advise the mother to have an abortion?  If the hormonal environment in the womb is a significant factor in determining sexual orientation it may in the future be possible to determine and provide an ideal hormonal balance for pregnant women but that does not help individuals now whose sexual orientation is already hard wired into their phenotype.  In the same way, it is possible that absent fathers and/or overbearing mothers also have a role to play but that is of no help to those already affected.

To preach that sexual orientation is a choice is easy for those whose sexual orientation is mainstream heterosexual.  The choice of denial may sooth those suffering from homophobia but it is not a satisfactory solution from any standpoint.  Many unhappy lives and loveless marriages have been endured by people “choosing” to deny their sexual orientation.  However, accepting ones sexual orientation is not an easy option in a homophobic society since it often means facing discrimination and physical violence and the loss of family support.  It is certainly not a choice made on a whim or for fun.  To suggest that such a choice would affect the stability of heterosexual marriages is so farfetched that it can only be understood if we assume that those espousing this view are fearful that their own orientation is in question.  The homophobes cannot be suggesting that heterosexuals would suddenly make the choice to become homosexual so they must be expressing the fear that some homosexuals who are currently in denial would finally come out of the closet.

Those pushing the homophobic agenda have no difficulty accepting foreign money to further their cause.  They realize that most of their arguments cannot stand in a court of law and so they are using technicalities to postpone legal proceedings to give them more time to whip up public sentiment in an effort to intimidate the judiciary.  Belize is not a theocracy and each of us may choose our own spiritual direction.  Our laws do not follow the dictates of the Old Testament and we are free within the law to follow them or not.  Thus adultery, fornication, coveting one’s neighbour’s wife (or husband) and many other Old Testament prohibitions are not illegal, which is fortunate for many of the same self proclaimed spiritual leaders.  Instead of using their position to stir up hatred and discrimination against others they should be using it to cleanse their own souls. As Jesus famously said (John 7:53-8:11) when he prevented a mob from stoning to death a woman accused of adultery, “Let him without sin cast the first stone.”

-1 10 0 56 12/15/2011 06:00:00 62 0/0/0000 00:00:00 0 0 0/0/0000 00:00:00 12/15/2011 06:00:00 0/0/0000 00:00:00 show_title= link_titles= show_intro= show_section= link_section= show_category= link_category= show_vote= show_author= show_create_date= show_modify_date= show_pdf_icon= show_print_icon= show_email_icon= language= keyref= readmore= 1 0 1 0 1190 robots= author= 4167 7 busted in car with 9 mm pistol and 8 live rounds 7-busted-in-car-with-9-mm-pistol-and-8-live-rounds

A group of seven including two women, 17-year-old minor and four others were busted inside a silver Infinity car with a 9mm pistol and 8 live rounds of ammunition.


On Monday December 12th the group of seven 23-year-old Earl Gill, a resident and a Security Guard of Mile 14 Northern Highway, Sand hill Village; along with 23-year-old Office Assistant at PUC, Jamie Young of Mile 18 ½ Sand Hill; Orlando Reyes, 30, a self-employed Boat Captain and resident of #38 Mahogany Street, Belize City; Kevin Vacarro, 26, a Boat captain of Mile 18, Sand Hill Village; 22-year-old Janine Henry, a school warden of Sand Hill Village; Atany Middleton, 19, an unemployed of #3112 Kraal Road, Belize City along with a 17-year-old minor of Sand Hill Village, appeared in Court #2 before Senior Magistrate, Sharon Frazer where they were charged for gun possession.

 Reyes, who claimed he was the front passenger took the rap for the gun and ammunition. He pleaded guilty to the charges and was sentenced to two five-year jail terms for the offense.

The court prosecutor, Sgt. Hector Rodriguez informed the court that the charges would not be withdrawn from the others since checks had to be made with the DPP’s office on the matter. What has been the practice in the past is that when one accused in a group pleads guilty to the offenses before the court, the others usually see the charges withdrawn immediately.  But recently, the prosecutor must first check with the DPP’s officer for her guidance.

In mitigation, Reyes said that he was sorry to waste the court’s time and that he was sorry to have everyone in the situation they were in.  Although Senior Magistrate Frazer told him that she did not believe that he was the only one who knew the gun was in the car, she accepted his guilty plea for the offenses.  When the others learned that they were not freed from the charge, Vacarro said that he was the last one to enter the vehicle as he was picked up at the Lord’s Bank junction on that day and that he only knew three of the persons, none of them being Reyes.    The 17-year-old minor said he was sleeping in the vehicle when police intercepted it as he had a headache and that he had no knowledge and idea of the gun being in the vehicle.  The Senior Magistrate told the other six accused that the option to withdraw the charge is not in her power and that they will be remanded to the Belize Central Prison until January 3 but that they had to right to apply for bail through the Supreme Court within the next 14 days.  The group is due back in Court #2 on January 3.  Reyes begins to serve his 5 year jail term effective Monday The two 5-year jail terms are to run concurrently meaning he will  only serve five years instead of 10.

On Saturday, December 10, at about 3:25p.m., police officers were on mobile patrol on the Northern Highway, when they received information of a silver Infinity; vehicle heading towards Sand Hill with a gun onboard.   Officers later intercepted the vehicle at the junction of the Burrell Boom Cut Off and the Northern Highway, where the driver, Earl Gill and its occupants were informed that a search would be conducted for illegal firearms and ammunitions.  During the search, police found a black nine mm Ruger brand pistol that was in the glove compartment.   All present inside the vehicle at the time were asked if they had a gun license and no one could produce any documents. They were escorted to the Ladyville Police Station and later charged.  -1 1 0 39 12/15/2011 06:00:00 62 0/0/0000 00:00:00 0 0 0/0/0000 00:00:00 12/15/2011 06:00:00 0/0/0000 00:00:00 show_title= link_titles= show_intro= show_section= link_section= show_category= link_category= show_vote= show_author= show_create_date= show_modify_date= show_pdf_icon= show_print_icon= show_email_icon= language= keyref= readmore= 1 0 7 0 2211 robots= author= 4168 Grief Counseling for young witnesses of River Valley accident grief-counseling-for-young-witnesses-of-river-valley-accident

FidelThe village of Double Head Cabbage was the site of a heartbreaking, tragic accident on Friday, December 9. According to eyewitnesses, 5-year-old Tayjaun McFadzean was walking his 3-year-old sister, Rayjanee McFadzean, to her babysitter, who was standing at a bus stop near the Belize Rural Primary School Site II when the siblings walked into a blind spot of a yellow school bus driven at the time by 47-year-old Fidel Lanza. As the bus was about to make a turn, Principal Marilyn Stevenson saw the two children walking near the bus. She yelled to notify the driver but it was too late. The bus had already run the children over when Lanza was made aware of their presence. Kay Smith was a teacher on board the bus. She rushed out to check on the children. Smith found young Rayjanee on the ground crying. She picked her up and held the child in her arm. According to Smith, Rayjanee’s feet were visibly shattered. The children were taken to the village clinic then rushed to the Karl Heusner Memorial Hospital. Tayjaun was treated for minor injuries and released from the hospital. Rayjanee was not as fortunate. Doctors’ lifesaving efforts were unsuccessful and she died approximately 4 hours after the incident.


The incident occurred just before school called in on Friday and many young students witnessed the traumatic incident. The children cried out in fear then fright and eventually grief. School was closed for the day as the experience proved overwhelming for the students. The Ministry of Education has since provided grief counseling for the children of the school and the family of the victims. The Ministry plans to remain involved in the investigation of the incident and review the report in an effort “to reduce the likelihood of such an unfortunate incident happening again”.

47-year-old Fidel Lanza appeared in the Belize city Magistrate’s Court on Monday, December 12, to answer to charges of manslaughter by negligence, causing death by careless conduct, driving without due care and attention and negligent grievous harm. Chief Magistrate Ann-Marie Smith explained that no plea would be taken because the matter is an indictable offense. He was offered bail in the sum of $7,500- $2,500 cash and a surety of $5,000. He was ordered to surrender all travel documents to the clerk of court and report to the Ladyville Police Station every Monday between the hours of 7:00 a.m., and 7:00 p.m. Lanza is scheduled to reappear in court on January 18.    -1 1 0 39 12/15/2011 06:00:00 62 0/0/0000 00:00:00 0 0 0/0/0000 00:00:00 12/15/2011 06:00:00 0/0/0000 00:00:00 show_title= link_titles= show_intro= show_section= link_section= show_category= link_category= show_vote= show_author= show_create_date= show_modify_date= show_pdf_icon= show_print_icon= show_email_icon= language= keyref= readmore= 1 0 6 0 1907 robots= author= 4169 Fisherman accused of burning girl with cigarette fisherman-accused-of-burning-girl-with-cigarette

LukeFisherman, Luke Cox has been accused of causing harm to a 17-year-old female minor. The fisherman of the Conchshell Bay area of Blize city is accused of burning the young woman with a cigarette between her breasts during an argument.


The incident is alleged to have occurred on Sunday, December 11, at a Chinese shop located at the corner of Ebony Street and Youth for the Future Drive in Belize City.  On Tuesday, December 13th the 21-year-old, Luke Cox appeared in Court #2 before Senior Magistrate Sharon Frazer where he was charged with one count of harm upon the 17-year-old minor. Cox pleaded not guilty to the charge and was offered bail in the sum of $1,000. Cox is to reappear in court on February 1, 2012.

 In a report to police, the 17-year-old female told police that on Sunday, December 11, at about 9:00 p.m., she was at the grocery store at the corner of Ebony Street and Youth for the Future Drive when  Cox, who was in the company of some friends, began to yell out some obscene words to her.  She claimed that as a result, she and Cox got into a verbal disagreement and that’s when Cox threw a cigarette which he was smoking at her. It fell into her clothing an caused a burn to the middle of her chest.  The female was taken to the KHMH where she was examined by a doctor who classified her injury as harm. -1 1 0 39 12/15/2011 06:00:00 62 0/0/0000 00:00:00 0 0 0/0/0000 00:00:00 12/15/2011 06:00:00 0/0/0000 00:00:00 show_title= link_titles= show_intro= show_section= link_section= show_category= link_category= show_vote= show_author= show_create_date= show_modify_date= show_pdf_icon= show_print_icon= show_email_icon= language= keyref= readmore= 1 0 5 0 2593 robots= author= 4170 Two men to stand trial for double murder two-men-to-stand-trial-for-double-murder

CharlesTwo Belize City men will stand trial for a double murder that occurred on February 4 of this year. Charles Young Jr. and Derrick Kuylen will be tried in the April session of Supreme Court set to begin on April 16, 2012.


On February 4, a drive-by shooting occurred in the Saint Martin’s de Porres area which ended the life of a two men who were hanging out in an area at the corner of Hibiscus and Tibruce Streets. 17-year-old Daniel Puerto and Ian Cunningham Martinez 34, both lost their lives in the shooting.

At the time of the shooting police picked up and charged 20-year-old Charles Young Jr., of Police Street and 23-year-old AC technician, Derrick Kuylen a resident of Baghdad Street. On Monday December 12th both men saw their preliminary inquiry (PI) conclude before the Chief Magistrate Anne Marie Smith where their case for murder was committed to the Supreme Court for trial. A prima facie case was established against them as all the evidence secured by police was presented to the court.

In court, only Kuylen was represented by Attorney Ellis Arnold, who told the court during the PI that he was not challenging any of the evidence at this stage and agreed for them to go ahead with the committal.  Young’s attorney was Arthur Saldivar; he was not present in court during the PI.   Both men, who remains behind bars, were told that their case was committed to the April session of the Supreme Court schedule to commence on April 16, 2012.

On February 8 of this year, four days after the shooting incident, police made their first arrest when Young was charged. That arrest was later followed by that of Kuylen who was arrested and charged on Thursday, February 17, nine days after.   The two men were initially charge with 5 counts- 2 count of murder for the shooting death of 34-year-old Ian Martinez, and 17-year-old Daniel Puerto and one count of attempted murder for the shooting and injury caused to Daniel’s twin brother, 17-year-old Darnell Puerto.  They were additionally charged with one count of dangerous harm and use of deadly means of harm.

On Friday, February 4, at about 6:00 p.m., at the corner of Hibiscus and Tibruce Streets, Daniel and Darnell Puerto were standing in front of their home in the company of Ian Cunningham Martinez, when a brown car pulled up in the area and two men alighted and opened fire.  As many as 20 shots were fired fatally wounding Daniel and Ian Martinez.

-1 1 0 39 12/15/2011 06:00:00 62 0/0/0000 00:00:00 0 0 0/0/0000 00:00:00 12/15/2011 06:00:00 0/0/0000 00:00:00 show_title= link_titles= show_intro= show_section= link_section= show_category= link_category= show_vote= show_author= show_create_date= show_modify_date= show_pdf_icon= show_print_icon= show_email_icon= language= keyref= readmore= 1 0 4 0 1850 robots= author= 4171 BDF Soldier remanded to prison for gun assault on his wife bdf-soldier-remanded-to-prison-for-gun-assault-on-his-wife-

LyndonBDF Soldier, 31-year-old, Lyndon Flores who is accused of assaulting his common-law-wife with a gun and breaking up some of her household items during a domestic dispute, was remanded to the Belize Central Prison.


The soldier was taken to the Belize City Magistrate’s Court on Friday December 9th where he appeared unrepresented before the Chief Magistrate, Anne Marie Smith.  Flores was charged with two counts - one for aggravated assault with a firearm upon Shalya Morena and one count of damage to property.

Reports are that on November 10, 2011, he entered her home where he pulled a gun and pointed it at her and then began to damage her household items. He was charged with damaging a silver and black stereo valued, a black and white Dao Washing machine and two pillows among other items all valued at $905.00.  He pleaded not guilty to the two charges but due to the nature of the offense, which involved a firearm, the Chief Magistrate told him that he must be remanded to the Belize Central Prison.  No bail can be offered to the soldier at the Magistrate’s court level until the next 90 days elapse.  If he wants bail, he must apply to the Supreme Court with the assistance of an attorney.   Lyndon Flores is due back in Court #1 on January 18. 2012 -1 1 0 39 12/15/2011 06:00:00 62 0/0/0000 00:00:00 0 0 0/0/0000 00:00:00 12/15/2011 06:00:00 0/0/0000 00:00:00 show_title= link_titles= show_intro= show_section= link_section= show_category= link_category= show_vote= show_author= show_create_date= show_modify_date= show_pdf_icon= show_print_icon= show_email_icon= language= keyref= readmore= 1 0 3 0 2020 robots= author= 4172 Two killings in a week, incidents unrelated two-killings-in-a-week-incidents-unrelated

GeorgeGeorge Kareem Rochester Jr., 37, a fisherman and aspiring musician residing in Orange Walk  Town, became the victim of a shooting, which claimed his life on Saturday night, December 10.


Police say that just before 10 p.m. multiple gunshots were heard in the area of Quilter Avenue in Ladyville, and a man was seen fleeing the scene.

Police say that they believe that George Rochester had just exited a bus and was attempting to make a purchase at a nearby establishment when he was shot.  The assailant is believed to have exited the very same bus and may have been following him the entire time. When Rochester got off the bus and was on a secluded section of the street, the gunman made his attempt which proved successful.

Rochester sustained as many as four gunshot wounds, one hitting him below the right eye, another in the right side of the chest and one to both legs. He died on the spot, and a post-mortem confirmed that he bled out from his multiple gunshot wounds.

His father Kareem Rochester Sr., told the media that his son had intentions of going to a family party in Ladyville. Rochester (the elder) said that it is especially heartbreaking to hear that his son was murdered hours after they had last seen him. He said that he was on a 10-day vacation to visit his son and his family of five.

There was also another man who was brutally murdered, and that man has been identified to police as Abayomi Olatunji, 40, a Nigerian Security Guard  who resides on Chancellor Drive, Belize City.

Police say that on Friday, December 9, just after midday, they found Olatunji’s body in a pile of garbage on a feeder road, just off mile 3 on the Western Highway. He had as much as 15 stab wounds to the face and upper body.

Authorities believed he may have been killed within 24 hours of his body’s discovery, and he was dumped in the area after he was attacked elsewhere.

The area where Olatunji’s body was found has become somewhat of a body disposal site of choice due to its seclusion. -1 1 0 39 12/15/2011 06:00:00 62 0/0/0000 00:00:00 0 0 0/0/0000 00:00:00 12/15/2011 06:00:00 0/0/0000 00:00:00 show_title= link_titles= show_intro= show_section= link_section= show_category= link_category= show_vote= show_author= show_create_date= show_modify_date= show_pdf_icon= show_print_icon= show_email_icon= language= keyref= readmore= 1 0 2 0 2143 robots= author= 4173 Teenager to stand trial for carnal knowledge of minor teenager-to-stand-trial-for-carnal-knowledge-of-minor

OrlinOrlin Arias saw his case committed to the April session of the Supreme Court after he was accused of having sex with a 15-year-old school girl. Arias was committed to stand trial at the conclusion of a preliminary inquiry, which took place before Chief Magistrate, Anne Marie Smith. The Chief Magistrate informed him on Tuesday December 13th that his case would be committed to the Supreme Court for trial. He is accused of having sex with a 15-year-old minor.


The incident is alleged to have occurred on May 15 of this year.  Arias, who is a resident of Grant’s Alley, was initially out on bail of $5,000 but that bail was revoked and he was offered a new bail in the same amount. He is to reappear in court on April 16, 2012 for the commencement of the April session of the Supreme Court. At that time he will be tried for the charge of carnal knowledge by a jury of nine men and women.  Carnal knowledge for a girl between 14 to 16 carries a jail term of 5-10 years. -1 1 0 39 12/15/2011 06:00:00 62 0/0/0000 00:00:00 0 0 0/0/0000 00:00:00 12/15/2011 06:00:00 0/0/0000 00:00:00 show_title= link_titles= show_intro= show_section= link_section= show_category= link_category= show_vote= show_author= show_create_date= show_modify_date= show_pdf_icon= show_print_icon= show_email_icon= language= keyref= readmore= 1 0 1 0 1921 robots= author= 4174 A call for Unity and Action - Hon. Gaspar Vega, Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Natural Resources and Environment (Belize) a-call-for-unity-and-action-hon-gaspar-vega-deputy-prime-minister-and-minister-of-natural-resources-and-environment-belize

Hon.Madame President,
Allow me to extend to you the warmest greetings from the Government and people of Belize. 


Belizeans know all too well the adverse impacts of climate change as we watch our coastlines vanish, our lands becoming more arid, our coral reef, the longest in the Western Hemisphere, suffering from increasing bleaching events and ocean acidification, and our children threatened by the effects of climate change.

As a matter of necessity, urgency and for the benefit of humanity, Madame  President, we must make significant progress on a number of salient and critical issues here in Durban:
The level of ambition particularly amongst all Annex I parties must be ratcheted upwards now, so that emissions peak no later than 2015 and decline thereafter in order to stay within the Copenhagen goal of limiting warming well below 2 degrees Celsius. More importantly,we need to maintain the possibility of moving toward a new goal below 1.5 degrees Celsius, consistent with recommendations of the scientific community. 

A  five year second commitment period under the Kyoto Protocol, with a single, common and legally-binding base year of 1990, must be decided now to avoid any legal gaps in the implementation of the Protocol.

Financing must, by legal mandate, come from public sources, but the private sector itself has a role to play  in the global climate change response. Financing options must become more balanced between mitigation and adaptation, if small vulnerable countries like Belize are to become more resilient to climate change. In the case of REDD plus, we can entertain a basket of financing options; however, these  options must be come on stream now.

Similarly, the Green Climate Fund must also become fully operational. The Adaptation Committee must also be constituted and activated. We also have an obligation, Madame President, to make sure that there are no financing gaps between the end of the fast start and long term financing periods.

Madame President, we must, without delay, establish a rules-based regime that is robust, well financed and that remains committed and truthful to the fundamental principles of the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change.We need more research to quantify the role that blue carbon can play in the global fight against climate change.

There is simply no other alternative than to act now; we cannot afford to wait any longer because our people are already suffering from the adverse effects of climate change. Waiting means that the international community will forgo its obligation to ensure that global warming remains below the critical threshold.  Waiting will ensure that we will not have a second commitment period, rendering useless, years of accomplishments and progress.  The Government and people of Belize cannot embrace or tolerate such a reality.

Madame President, my country has made significant progress in meeting the Convention’s commitments. Just this week, the Rio Bravo Carbon Sequestration Pilot Project in Belize, one of the first REDD projects in the world,  was successfully validated and verified under the Verified Carbon Standard; over 26% of our national lands are protected; we have 70 percent  forest cover; we have  a  national ban on bottom trawling; we have outlawed the sale and development of coastal shoals;  we are one of the global leaders in increasing  our no-take zones to 2% of our marine territory; and, we lead the region in obtaining  more than 50 percent of our energy from renewable resources. Given our proven commitment in this area, we reiterate our willingness and readiness to host the headquarters of the renewable energy facility for all Small Island Developing States –the SIDS/DOCK.

As these accomplishments demonstrate, we have done and continue to do our part. However, we cannot continue to incur these opportunity costs unless we receive new, additional, timely and predictable climate change financing from the various mechanisms under the Convention.We cannot do it alone; we need the participation and cooperation from all stakeholders. In this regard, Belize draws the Parties attention to allow the Republic of China on Taiwan to meaningfully participate in the Convention, for we are convinced that every country has a responsibility to find solutions to climate change.

Finally, Madame President, I want to give you my highest assurances that both the Government and people of Belize are committed to the principles of the Convention. Our children are expecting much more from us and we must not disappoint them. Madame President, the time for half measures is too long gone; the impacts of climate change is accelerating right before our eyes, climate change is a reality. We must act now! We must act decisively and we must act boldly!
On behalf of the Government and people of Belize, Madame President, we want to thank you for yourkind and warm hospitality! Ngiyabonga! I thank you! -1 1 0 40 12/15/2011 06:00:00 62 0/0/0000 00:00:00 0 0 0/0/0000 00:00:00 12/15/2011 06:00:00 0/0/0000 00:00:00 show_title= link_titles= show_intro= show_section= link_section= show_category= link_category= show_vote= show_author= show_create_date= show_modify_date= show_pdf_icon= show_print_icon= show_email_icon= language= keyref= readmore= 1 0 9 0 2362 robots= author= 4175 Ministry of Tourism, Civil Aviation and Culture holds End of Year Review meeting ministry-of-tourism-civil-aviation-and-culture-holds-end-of-year-review-meeting

EndBelize City, Belize, Tuesday, December 14th , 2011- With the year almost coming to an end, The Ministry of Tourism, Civil Aviation and Culture conducted its annual  Heads of Department  Meeting this past Friday, December 9th  at the San Ignacio Resort Hotel to discuss the accomplishments and identify projects while outlinining upcoming plans for 2012.


 Honourable Manuel Heredia Jr., Minister of Tourism, Civil Aviation and Culture chaired the meeting. Also present was Lindsay Garbutt, Chief Executive Officer, and representatives from the various departments that encompass the Ministry, namely the Belize Airport Authority (BAA), the Belize Tourism Board (BTB), Sustainable Tourism Development Programme (STDP), Department of Civil Aviation, Belize Archives and Records Service, Border Management Agency (BMA), and the National Institute of Creative Arts (NICH).

Among the many notable achievements  are the successful upgrading of local airstrips including  those in Dangriga and Placencia and the groundbreaking and commencement of construction for the impressive Cayo Welcome Centre, which promises to be a world-class Centre. Bids are being accepted for the San Pedro Sunset Boardwalk and Water Taxi projects and STDP is in the final procurement stages for the Placencia Municipal Pier and Plaza and the Belize City Fort Point Pedestrian Walk. It was also announced that the proposed Master Plan for Belize City has been completed and will be presented to Government for review.

A presentation of the draft for the proposed Urban Development Plan, which is being prepared under the auspices of the Ministry of Tourism, Civil Aviation and Culture, was well received.

The Belize Tourism Board embarked on an aggressive online marketing strategy that is positioning the Belize Brand in the forefront of travel trade internationally. As a result of BTB’s strategic marketing efforts, two major U.S. Television Networks chose Belize for film projects this year which will further serve to promote the country.

Major improvements in visitor flow and hospitality were cited at the Belize City Tourism Village and PGIA. Information kiosks staffed by BTB professionals have been incorporated at both the Northern and Western borders; we envision that this will provide a welcoming atmosphere to all tourists coming into our country.

Over the past year, ICA has filled the Bliss Centre for Performing Arts and other cultural venues around the country with numerous performing arts presentations by local and  international artists. Corozal will be the next destination to receive its very own House of Culture by year end.  A House of Culture Coordinator was recently appointed for San Pedro and work begins in the New Year to establish a House of Culture on the island. The Prime Minister’s Forum, the Paan Yaad Concert and the introduction of Frankie Reneau’s “Hymn to Belize” were the highlights of the National September Celebrations. 2012 will usher in an exciting year long calendar of activities commemorating the conclusion of a B’ak”tun and the dawning of a new era! The first ever Sculpture Symposium was facilitated in Belize and visiting international artists created several public pieces that will be erected around the country.

The Minister of Tourism, Civil Aviation and Culture,  Hon. Manuel Heredia, Jr. along with the Management and Staff of the Ministry would like to wish all Belizeans a Merry Christmas and a Very Prosperous New Year.

-1 1 0 40 12/15/2011 06:00:00 62 0/0/0000 00:00:00 0 0 0/0/0000 00:00:00 12/15/2011 06:00:00 0/0/0000 00:00:00 show_title= link_titles= show_intro= show_section= link_section= show_category= link_category= show_vote= show_author= show_create_date= show_modify_date= show_pdf_icon= show_print_icon= show_email_icon= language= keyref= readmore= 1 0 8 0 2784 robots= author= 4176 Children in remote village of the Toledo District to get new school children-in-remote-village-of-the-toledo-district-to-get-new-school

Belmopan, Wednesday, 14th December 2011:   

Children in Sunday Wood Village, one of the most remote communities in the Toledo District, will soon have a new school building.  The school project will be launched during a ground breaking ceremony on Thursday morning at the project site in Sunday Wood Village.


The project will be implemented by the Social Investment Fund at an approximate cost of $422,000 and financed by the Government of Belize through a loan from the Caribbean Development Bank.

The project intends to provide a one story reinforced-concrete building 25ft wide by 120 ft long including a 6ft verandah. The works include construction of three (25ft by 30 ft.) classrooms with two movable partitions, a male and female bathroom block and a principal’s office. The foundation will be designed for a two storey building in anticipation of future expansion.  All internal and external walls will be plastered and painted.  The building will include solid timber doors and aluminum louvered windows. Provisions of electrical, plumbing, water supply and waste water systems in accordance with the regulation of respective authorities will be included in the project.  Furniture and a solar panel system will also be incorporated. The building will be used as a shelter in the event of an emergency.

The southern region of Belize has traditionally been considered the most under-resourced part of the country. The Toledo District, where the target community is located, has 46% of its population living in poverty.  Sunday Wood Village was established in 1984 by Ketchi Mayas and has a population of approximately 358. Most of the villagers depend on subsistence farming.

Their main crop is rice, which is sold at the Rice Mill in Big Falls. The farmers also cultivate beans and corn for family use.

The Sunday Wood RC School is a multi-grade school and has an enrollment of 107 students and 21 pre-school children. There is one main concrete building, which houses Infant 2 and Standards 1 & 2. The wooden building which houses Standards 3, 4, 5 and 6 is in a deteriorating condition.  There is no ceiling on this building, which creates an uncomfortable environment due to excessive heat during the dry months. The zinc on the roof is dilapidated causing children to get wet when it rains. The thatch roof building, which houses the pre-school and Infant 1, is also in poor condition.

The guest speaker at the project launching will be Hon. Peter Eden Martinez, Minister of  Human Development and Social Transformation and Area Representative for Toledo East.  Other speakers will include Mr. Joseph Cayetano, Assistant Local Manager for RC Schools in the Toledo District, representatives of the Ministry of Education and the Social Investment Fund as well as the Sunday Wood Village Council and the Village Alcalde. -1 1 0 40 12/15/2011 06:00:00 62 0/0/0000 00:00:00 0 0 0/0/0000 00:00:00 12/15/2011 06:00:00 0/0/0000 00:00:00 show_title= link_titles= show_intro= show_section= link_section= show_category= link_category= show_vote= show_author= show_create_date= show_modify_date= show_pdf_icon= show_print_icon= show_email_icon= language= keyref= readmore= 1 0 7 0 1986 robots= author= 4177 Condolences to the Simplis Family condolences-to-the-simplis-family

NormanMembers of the Guardian Newspaper, Wave Radio and The United Democratic Party Secretariat family wish to express their condolences to the family of Mr. Norman Gilbert Simplis. Simplis passed away at the Karl Heusner Memorial Hospital on Sunday, December 11, due to an intestinal disorder.


Simplis ensured that his children were brought up with the values of hard work, compassion and commitment to service.  His emphasis on those values has played an instrumental role in his daughter’s tireless work as Special Envoy for Women and Children. Simplis was 92 years old. May his soul rest in eternal peace.   -1 1 0 40 12/15/2011 06:00:00 62 0/0/0000 00:00:00 0 0 0/0/0000 00:00:00 12/15/2011 06:00:00 0/0/0000 00:00:00 show_title= link_titles= show_intro= show_section= link_section= show_category= link_category= show_vote= show_author= show_create_date= show_modify_date= show_pdf_icon= show_print_icon= show_email_icon= language= keyref= readmore= 1 0 6 0 2230 robots= author= 4178 Assistance to farmers and women continues assistance-to-farmers-and-women-continues

Hon.The Minister of Agriculture in collaboration with the Bolivarian government of Venezuela delivered two sewing machines, one freezer and three carrot washers to the Farmers and Women’s group of San Antonio Village in the Cayo District on Tuesday December 6th.


The objective of this program is to improve the lives and livelihoods of Belizean people through the Ministry’s platform of Food Security, which emphasises on rural development and the concept of the “Farm Family”. These Materials were donated under the ALBA Funds.

The Minister of Agriculture would also like to inform the public that Belize will be getting assistance for the second phase on the control of Huang Long Bin in Belize.
The assistance will come from SENASICA Mexico with a sum of $366,000.00USD for the year 2012. 

HuangLongBin also known as greening is a disease that affects citrus products and is difficult to manage due to the non-specific nature of its symptoms, prolonged period in the field and the irregular distribution of the pathogen in the plant. -1 1 0 40 12/15/2011 06:00:00 62 0/0/0000 00:00:00 0 0 0/0/0000 00:00:00 12/15/2011 06:00:00 0/0/0000 00:00:00 show_title= link_titles= show_intro= show_section= link_section= show_category= link_category= show_vote= show_author= show_create_date= show_modify_date= show_pdf_icon= show_print_icon= show_email_icon= language= keyref= readmore= 1 0 5 0 1882 robots= author= 4179 Corozal District Ready for elections corozal-district-ready-for-elections

The United Democratic Party continues with its preparations for elections. On Thursday, December 8th, the UDP’s Secretary General, Philippa Griffith Bailey; Party Chairman, Hon. Patrick Faber; Deputy Party Chairman Roosevelt Blades; and National Party Coordinator, Ruben Campos met with the constituency executives for Corozal Southeast and Corozal Southwest.


The meeting served to reinforce the commitment by the executive bodies in the constituencies to win the next general elections. Participating in the meetings included current Standard Bearers as well as individuals who contested for the constituency elections held earlier this year. Meetings were also held with executives of the Corozal North constituency where again there is a united mission to ensure victory for the UDP in the next General Elections.
(See pictorial spread on Insert B -1 1 0 40 12/15/2011 06:00:00 62 0/0/0000 00:00:00 0 0 0/0/0000 00:00:00 12/15/2011 06:00:00 0/0/0000 00:00:00 show_title= link_titles= show_intro= show_section= link_section= show_category= link_category= show_vote= show_author= show_create_date= show_modify_date= show_pdf_icon= show_print_icon= show_email_icon= language= keyref= readmore= 1 0 4 0 201 robots= author= 4180 Hon. Erwin Contreras Brings New Preschool to Santiago Juan Layout hon-erwin-contreras-brings-new-preschool-to-santiago-juan-layout GroundOn Monday, December 12, Hon. Erwin Contreras, Area Representative for Cayo West and Minister of Economic Development, Commerce, Industry and Consumer Protection, and Hon. Salvador Fernandez, Area Representative for Cayo North, joined representatives of the Social Investment Fund and the Ministry of Education to launch a project for the construction of the Santiago Juan Pre-school Building in the Santiago Juan Layout Area of San Ignacio Town.

The project is being financed by the Government of Belize through a loan from the Caribbean Development Bank . It entails the construction of a 2,000 sq. foot concrete building with zinc roof, reinforced concrete floor, galvanized aluminum louvered windows with burglar bars and solid timber doors.  The building will have one classroom, a kitchen and boys and girls bathroom facilities. It will also include quality landscaping, playground equipment, a supply of toys and electronic equipment such as a DVD Player, television and radio.The compound will be properly fenced and a ramp will be included to provide access for individuals with special needs.

The pre-school will be able to accommodate 50 students in the morning and 50 in the afternoon. Minister Contreras said that pre-school education sets the foundation for the life long process of learning by equipping children with the basic literacy and social skills.  Early childhood education is crucial for human development and poverty reduction.

Santiago Juan Layout is located in the suburbs to the west of San Ignacio Town, Cayo District.  This growing suburb lies west of the Bullet Tree Road and is expanding north towards Bullet Tree Village and west towards the Guatemalan border. With a growing population, the need for a pre-school in the Santiago Juan Layout has become a priority for parents in the area. The Government of Belize provided the land for the project.

The pre-school project falls in line with Millennium Development Goal No. 2, which aims to achieve Universal Primary Education and Target 5, which aims to ensure that by 2005, children everywhere will be able to complete a full course of primary schooling up to Standard 6. 
The project will be implemented by the Social Investment Fund at an approximate cost of $211,895. -1 1 0 40 12/15/2011 06:00:00 62 0/0/0000 00:00:00 0 0 0/0/0000 00:00:00 12/15/2011 06:00:00 0/0/0000 00:00:00 show_title= link_titles= show_intro= show_section= link_section= show_category= link_category= show_vote= show_author= show_create_date= show_modify_date= show_pdf_icon= show_print_icon= show_email_icon= language= keyref= readmore= 1 0 3 0 384 robots= author= 4181 Special Envoy Launches Inspiration Calendar special-envoy-launches-inspiration-calendar-

CEOOn Friday, December 9, the Office of the Special Envoy for Women and Children collaborated with McNab Design to launch the Inspiration Calendar 2012.


The calendar is based on the art pieces of Misael Jose Ayuso of St. Peter’s Anglican School in Orange Walk Town; Joshua Nisbet of Belmopan Christian Academy; Cissada Baptist and Alexander Garbutt both of Stella Maris School; Elvira Cho of Forest Home Methodist School in the Toledo District; Obed Codd of San Pedro Government School; Jasmine Flores of Sacred Heart Special Education Center; Sydney Rhaburn of St. Peter’s Anglican School in Orange Walk Town, Efren Aguilar of Mary Hill R. C. School in Corozal Town; brother and sister Amarilis and Rangel Chan of San Roman Rio Hondo in Orange Walk; and Maya Ciego of Happy Day Primary School.

Christine Norton, Country Representative for UNICEF, was present at the calendar launch. She commended Mrs. Kim Simplis Barrow on her tireless advocacy for the protection of children. She said, “When we look at the pieces on this calendar we are actually looking at a slice of theses children’s life, their soul, their nature.” She said more people need to understand that “these are not children with disabilities. They are children with different abilities.” Judith Alpuche, Chief Executive Officer in the Ministry of Human Development and Social Transformation, struck the same chord as Norton. She said, “There needs to be more public education on the need to protect the rights of children with disabilities and a stronger effort towards total inclusion.” She commended Mrs. Barrow for successfully lobbying for the ratification of the Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities.

The 2012 issue was the second Inspiration Calendar to be launched. The 2011 calendar was launched in the presence of an extremely special guest, Dr. Timothy Kennedy Shriver, Chairman and CEO of Special Olympics. That was not the case with this issue; therefore, what it lacked in hype must be made up in content. McNab Design took up the challenge to ensure exactly that. Tanya McNab of McNab Design and Dots Per Inch Limited said that the project “allowed us to be a part of something much bigger than ourselves”. McNab Design was responsible to select the 12 pieces and create the calendar.

Mrs. Barrow was not able to attend the launching since she was abroad receiving medical treatment. However, Kendra Griffith of the Special Envoy’s Office explained that she was there in spirit. Her favourite flower, the orchid, was placed around the room to symbolize her presence and approval. Mrs. Barrow has said that it is their resilience and resolve that has inspired her to fight on the behalf of individuals with special needs. She said, “For people with disabilities, it is a constant challenge to access even their basic right to education, self determination, safety, earning a living and being a productive citizen.  They just want the opportunity to be accepted for who they are and not rejected for what they are not.” Griffith spoke about Mrs. Barrow’s goal of establishing an Inspiration Center for children with disabilities. It will be a recreational and rehabilitation center. Alpuche said it will be kind of a reverse intrusive center in which it will cater specifically to children with special needs but other children will be welcomed as well. Tanya McNab handed over a cheque for $28,000 to the project. The money is proceeds from the sale of McNab Design’s Special Envoy Agenda 2012.

Individuals wishing to make a contribution to the center can contact the Special Envoy’s Office at 223-1941 or purchase one of the 2012 Agendas from McNab Design. The calendar project is an initiative of Special Envoy for Women and Children, McNab Design, Lifeline Foundation, CARE Belize and Special Olympics Belize.

-1 1 0 40 12/15/2011 06:00:00 64 Shane D. Williams 0/0/0000 00:00:00 0 0 0/0/0000 00:00:00 12/15/2011 06:00:00 0/0/0000 00:00:00 show_title= link_titles= show_intro= show_section= link_section= show_category= link_category= show_vote= show_author= show_create_date= show_modify_date= show_pdf_icon= show_print_icon= show_email_icon= language= keyref= readmore= 1 0 1 0 358 robots= author= 4182 KHMH Holds Appreciation Events for Staff and Family - Dr. Bernard Bulwer Says ‘Goodbye’ khmh-holds-appreciation-events-for-staff-and-family-dr-bernard-bulwer-says-goodbye

KHMHOn Wednesday, December 14, the Karl Heusner Memorial Hospital Authority held an appreciation Christmas luncheon for its staff members. For the last three years, the board has focused on raising the morale of the staff and creating a more family-based environment within the institution.

Chief Executive Officer of the hospital, Dr. Francis Gary Longsworth, said that working in a hospital is one of the most stressful jobs. Therefore, employees need to be there for each other to ease the stresses that comes with the job. He said that the Christmas luncheon is the most highly anticipated event of the year. It allows the staff to relax and celebrate each other’s accomplishments as well as say goodbye to those who are not planning to stay another year.

The Human Resources Department recognizes individuals who have served the institution with perfect attendance records. Lisa Green is the Director of the department. She says that the recognition has caused a boost in productivity and efficiency. The attendance record from December 1, 2010 to November 30, 2011 was reviewed and everyone with perfect attendance receives a special certificate of accomplishment and a small monetary award. The first year that the monetary award was issued, 2009, 49 individuals were recognized for perfect attendance. That number increased to 71 last year and this year 69 individuals boast a spotless record of diligence. The program itself is another initiative geared at improving service delivery and raising staff morale. Longsworth said that the staff is so huge you may not notice when an individual misses a day or two. Those who demonstrate the level of diligence try not miss a single day deserve any recognition possible.

In addition to those recognized for perfect attendance, six individuals were honoured for years of service to the Ministry of Health. Margaret Lightburn, Joan Robinson Singh, Dorla Ifield, Helen Cayetano, Myrna Arana and Diana Palacio have entered their submissions for retirement after this year. Longsworth said that the luncheon is always a bitter sweet event. Saying goodbye is never easy. One individual who said goodbye was Dr. Bernard Bulwer, Director of Medical Services. Dr. Bulwer has been offered the opportunity of a lifetime at Harvard University. He will be director of a programme that should benefit countries like Belize all over the world. In his address to members of the hospital family, he thanked them all for being a part of his team. He expressed the importance of employees at every level of the institution. He was extremely emotional when he spoke about his personal experience at the hospital and his desire to serve his country. Bulwer said, “I might be leaving but I will always be a part of the most important institution in Belize (KHMH).”
A Christmas party will be held for the children of employees of the hospital on Saturday, December 17.

-1 1 0 59 12/15/2011 06:00:00 64 Shane D. Williams 0/0/0000 00:00:00 0 0 0/0/0000 00:00:00 12/15/2011 06:00:00 0/0/0000 00:00:00 show_title= link_titles= show_intro= show_section= link_section= show_category= link_category= show_vote= show_author= show_create_date= show_modify_date= show_pdf_icon= show_print_icon= show_email_icon= language= keyref= readmore= 1 0 9 0 549 robots= author= 4183 First Belizean to be installed as Canon in the Episcopal Anglican Church U.S.A. first-belizean-to-be-installed-as-canon-in-the-episcopal-anglican-church-usa

CanonCanon George L. Bonner was born in the village of Lemonal to Mr. and Mrs. Wilfred Bonner.


He was educated at St. Luke’s Primary School, Lemonal and St. Michael’s College, Belize City.

After graduating from High School he taught in a number of local schools including schools in Flowers Bank and Lemonal Village.  He served as Principal Teacher in Willows Bank and his alma mater St. Luke’s Lemonal.

In 1973, he left Belize for Codrington College Barbados to test his vocation as a Priest in the Anglican Church.

He was ordained Deacon in 1976 and Priest in the Cathedral of St. Michael Barbados in 1978.  Canon Bonner served as Rector of St. Swithin’s and St. Clement Parishes for five (5) years after which he migrated to the United States.

About twenty-eight (28) years ago, St. Alban’s Church in Brooklyn was slated to be closed because of a dwindling congregation.  The Canarsie section of Brooklyn where the church is located was as racially isolated as any part of America’s Deep South.  This became his new assignment.  He remembered his first visit to the church when he was told by white residents that blacks were not accepted in the neighborhood.  It was a hostile environment, but  he  developed a close relationship with the Police (69th Precinct) and other community organizations, “we persisted and eventually Prevailed”.

In 1999 St. Alban’s was upgraded to a full Parish Status with Canon Bonner as its first Rector.  Today St. Alban’s is a Cardinal Parish in the Diocese of Long Island with 1400, registered members, and congregation averaging 500 at both services on Sunday morning.  The Parish raised some $2.5 million U.S. in upgrading and expanding its internal sacred and community facilities.

The church has been transformed from a dying institution to a vigorous and lively congregation.  This is because of a shift in the population.  The area is now predominantly West Indian.  The congregation is very devoted and is determined to make it work in the best interest of the people who worship there.  The Church Hall and its premises function as a vibrant community center.

Upon a recent visit by Bishop Provenzano and recognizing Bonner’s achievement, he decided to nominate him as a Canon of the cathedral.  He was installed on November 6th, 2011.
Canon George Bonner holds a Dip. Th - Codrington College, B.A. - U.W.I., M.S. Ed.(Hons) - Brooklyn College, Adv. Cert Ed. – Brooklyn College.

Canon Bonner is married to Marjorie Bradley Bonner and he has two sons George Jr. and Kurt and four grandchildren. -1 1 0 59 12/15/2011 06:00:00 62 0/0/0000 00:00:00 0 0 0/0/0000 00:00:00 12/15/2011 06:00:00 0/0/0000 00:00:00 show_title= link_titles= show_intro= show_section= link_section= show_category= link_category= show_vote= show_author= show_create_date= show_modify_date= show_pdf_icon= show_print_icon= show_email_icon= language= keyref= readmore= 1 0 8 0 295 robots= author= 4184 CHRISTMAS MESSAGE - 2011 - Dr. -Oliver Ottley. christmas-message-2011-dr-oliver-ottley

Dr.TEXT: Matthew 1:18 -21 (Good News Bible)

18. This is how the birth of Jesus Christ took place. His mother Mary was engaged to Joseph, but before they were married, she found out that she was going to have a baby by the Holy Spirit.

19. Joseph was a man who always did what was right, but he did not want to disgrace Mary publicly; so he made plans to break the engagement privately.

20. While he was thinking about this, an angel of the Lord appeared to him in a dream and said, “Joseph, descendant of David, do not be afraid to take Mary to be your wife. For it is by the Holy Spirit that she has conceived.

21. She will have a son, and you will name him Jesus – because he will save his people from their sins.”

 
HOW HE CAME,  WHEN HE CAME,  AND WHY HE CAME
The HOW of His coming is recorded in the four Gospels. Each of the inspired writers tells it differently. If each one wrote exactly the same thing in the same format, it would be considered a conspiracy. If they were reporting a building on fire, viewing it from different positions, each description would be somewhat different yet speaking in truth of the same building on fire. So, also, the report of His coming in each of the four Gospels is an integral part of the whole  story, which is more important than the sum of its parts.
The WHEN of His coming is not necessarily a matter of a calendar date. While there is a history of calendars based on various scientific conclusions and religious convictions,  the WHEN of the birth of Christ has more to do with the chronological certainty of His coming, which we celebrate.
The WHY of His coming is the heart of the Gospel. The angel of the Lord said to Joseph, “She will have a son, and you will name him Jesus – because he will save his people from their sins.”
The irony in the reason for the season is seen in the way so many celebrate His birth. The laws of our country classify what are called misdemeanours and crimes; what Scripture calls sin includes far more than what the law of the land calls wrongdoing – and remember, Jesus came to save us from our sins, not in our sins. One who is enjoying Vanity Fair does not want to give up the ways of the world. But one who is drowning wants more than anything else  to be saved. In light of this message, the lines of poetry below bear repeating:
VEILED IN FRAIL HUMANITY
Veiled in frail humanity,
The Christ of Christmas came
To save us for eternity,
And Jesus was His name.

Angels came to celebrate
With tidings of great joy,
For unto us was born that date
The incarnate Christ - A Baby Boy!

If angels who need not redemption,
For joy could shout and sing,
We should join in celebration
Of our salvation He came to bring!
   All things by Him created,
Christ the eternal Word;
Messiah long awaited,
Made flesh, our blessed Lord.
To think a lowly manger,
From which the cattle fed,
Cradled the Creator,
And made a royal bed.

A crowded town of Bethlehem,
No room was in the inn,
But in that sacred trough lay then
A Saviour from all sin.
  
-Oliver Ottley.
On behalf of the Church of the Nazarene in Belize, A BLESSED CHRISTMAS All the best of God’s blessings for 2012.    

 

 

 

-1 1 0 59 12/15/2011 06:00:00 62 Dr. O. Ottley 0/0/0000 00:00:00 0 0 0/0/0000 00:00:00 12/15/2011 06:00:00 0/0/0000 00:00:00 show_title= link_titles= show_intro= show_section= link_section= show_category= link_category= show_vote= show_author= show_create_date= show_modify_date= show_pdf_icon= show_print_icon= show_email_icon= language= keyref= readmore= 1 0 7 0 342 robots= author= 4185 FFB election results in Toledo ffb-election-results-in-toledo

December 9, 2011

Elections for the Toledo Football Association were held on Thursday, December 8th at 7:30 pm at the Julian Cho Technical High School. The elections were carried out by the Electoral Committee. The National Sports Council was represented by Mr. Patrick Henry.

Elected to serve in the Toledo FA Executive Committee are the following individuals:

Chairman, Cecil Tillett,
Vice-Chairman, Allen Genus,
Members: Carlos Galvez,
Waylon Parham,
Regino Hernandez.
Due to the busy schedule of its members, the Election Appeal Committee has not yet ruled on the appeal submitted by Mr. Virgilio Acosta for elections in the Corozal Football Association. In light of this, the Electoral Committee has requested that the Corozal FA re-schedule its elections, which were slated for this coming Sunday, December 11th.

The new date for the Corozal FA elections is Sunday, December 18th. The place and time will be announced next week.

The Election Appeal Committee has confirmed that it will have its decision on this appeal shortly. It has also confirmed that it will have its decision on the Nelson Moss appeal and the Marvin Ottley appeal within the next few days.
Press Release

-1 1 0 59 12/15/2011 06:00:00 62 0/0/0000 00:00:00 0 0 0/0/0000 00:00:00 12/15/2011 06:00:00 0/0/0000 00:00:00 show_title= link_titles= show_intro= show_section= link_section= show_category= link_category= show_vote= show_author= show_create_date= show_modify_date= show_pdf_icon= show_print_icon= show_email_icon= language= keyref= readmore= 1 0 6 0 161 robots= author= 4186 Marcia Mohabir called to the bar marcia-mohabir-called-to-the-bar

MarciaOn Friday December 9th 24-year-old Marcia Mohabir pledged her oath to practice law in Belize to the best of her ability.  The event took place in the Supreme Court where Attorney, Martin Marshalleck made the motion for Mohabir to be called to the Bar.  He spoke well of her and Mohabir shared the joyous moment and achievement in the presence of her parents as well as her relatives and close friends.


Marcia Mohabir is the daughter of Jean and Edward Mohabir both of Guyana.  The Guayanese, who is now a naturalized Belizean, has been in Belize for fifteen years.    She graduated from Hugh Wooding Law School earlier this year and served 5-6 years in the Belize Defense Force.  She told the Guardian that she is proud to be a serving member of the BDF, an achievement that she has been enjoying.   Mohabir lives in the Stann Creek Valley area.  She is presently the Assistant Deputy Registrar. 

-1 1 0 59 12/15/2011 06:00:00 62 0/0/0000 00:00:00 0 0 0/0/0000 00:00:00 12/15/2011 06:00:00 0/0/0000 00:00:00 show_title= link_titles= show_intro= show_section= link_section= show_category= link_category= show_vote= show_author= show_create_date= show_modify_date= show_pdf_icon= show_print_icon= show_email_icon= language= keyref= readmore= 1 0 5 0 523 robots= author= 4187 Mexican Embassy hosted a workshop on Women’s Empowerment mexican-embassy-hosted-a-workshop-on-womens-empowerment

WorkshopBelmopan,Belize, 13 December 2011.-  The Embassy of Mexico hosted a workshop entitled “Women’s Empowerment” where 20 Belizean women participated. The aim of the workshop was  to provide participants with basic training and tools to open a small business and enhance self-esteem. The training is part of the “Access to Justice Project” of the Women’s Issues Network (WIN-Belize). Participants are women at risk, who also participate in different programs of the Women´s Department, Youth Enhancement Services (YES), and Haven House.

The workshop was conducted by Enayda Medrano, a Mexican entrepreneur from Merida, Yucatan, who owns a small business called “Creaciones del Angel”. Ms. Medrano is part of a women´s project of the Mexican Business Council for Foreign Trade, Investment and Technology (COMCE) that supports business development.
The workshop looked at subjects such as women’s empowerment, entrepreneurship, business development, gender issues and self-esteem, as well as basic training and tools to develop a small business. The training took place at the Institute of Mexico in Belize City.

-1 1 0 59 12/15/2011 06:00:00 64 0/0/0000 00:00:00 0 0 0/0/0000 00:00:00 12/15/2011 06:00:00 0/0/0000 00:00:00 show_title= link_titles= show_intro= show_section= link_section= show_category= link_category= show_vote= show_author= show_create_date= show_modify_date= show_pdf_icon= show_print_icon= show_email_icon= language= keyref= readmore= 1 0 4 0 265 robots= author= 4188 First International Sculpture Symposium in Belize first-international-sculpture-symposium-in-belize

CarolineFrom the 12th of November to the 10th of December  seven international sculptors were in Belize for the first Sculpture Symposium. The objective of the gathering was for the sculptors to pass on knowledge and experience to our Belizean artisans.


For an entire month eight sculptors and their understudies chipped, grinded and sanded away on large boulders which were located on the compound of the old CET compound. By the end of the month nine blocks of lime stone were eventually transformed into eight pieces of art.

The finished product was unveiled on December 10; the organizers believe that the sculptors have accomplished the task of producing a vision of Belize at its 30th anniversary of Independence. Each piece has been given a name that the sculptor has deemed appropriate to depict their significance.

Among the eight creations are “Communication” by Petre Petrov of Bulgaria, “Course of History” by Roland Mayer of Germany, “Breaking of a New Dawn” by Belizean Sculptor, Curl Gordon, and “Smoking Mirror Return” by Colin Fique of England.

The other four sculptures include “Caribbean Wave – A momentary Lapse” by Florin Strejac of Romania, “The Mask (Replicated from Lamanai)” by Anthony Vicario of  Belize, “Beyond the Waves” by Canan Zongur from Turkey , and “Inner View” by Caroline Ramersdorfer and Austria.

According to Shari Williams, Communications Officer for the National Institute of Culture and History (NICH), they are pleased that these internationally renowned sculptors came to Belize to share their knowledge with our Belizean counterparts. Williams said that they not only did it free of cost, but they’ve donated their works to become a part of our heritage.
According to Williams, one of the pieces will be placed at the Cayo Welcome Center, one goes to the NICH compound in Belmopan.five of the eight pieces are on sale for the general public for $15,000 each.

-1 1 0 59 12/15/2011 06:00:00 62 0/0/0000 00:00:00 0 0 0/0/0000 00:00:00 12/15/2011 06:00:00 0/0/0000 00:00:00 show_title= link_titles= show_intro= show_section= link_section= show_category= link_category= show_vote= show_author= show_create_date= show_modify_date= show_pdf_icon= show_print_icon= show_email_icon= language= keyref= readmore= 1 0 3 0 532 robots= author= 4189 YFF Launches Southside Youth Success Project yff-launches-southside-youth-success-project

The stability of the gang truce has made it possible for youth developmental programs to become more effective. The government-funded apprenticeship program is one example of those successful programs. Now, there is a new initiative that seeks to build off the success of the apprenticeship program. On Wednesday, December 14, the Youth For the Future, under the auspices of the Ministry of Education and Youth in collaboration with the United Nation’s Development Fund, launched the “Southside Youth Success Project: Pathways to Employment for Young Men at-Risk of Joining Gangs”.

Christine Smith, Executive Director of Youth for the Future, said that the program seeks to target about 100 young men of Southside Belize City, who are prospects for gangs or are members of gangs. They will then be placed in a two-part program. Part one will see the establishment of a center, where the young men will be provided with mentoring, moral and social values guidance, life-skills and ‘job preparation’ training. In part two of the program, the young men will be placed in paid apprenticeship or job positions with corporate friends of the program. While on apprenticeship, the youths will receive further mentoring, training, and ‘trouble-shooting’ sessions to keep them at work. The program runs for a period of two years.

Funding for the event is provided by the United States Embassy through a grant from the Central American Regional Security Initiative (CARSI). Ambassador Vinai Thummalapally said that supporting the initiative was a no-brainer. He said it is a well- thought out project and the success should be tremendous. Other partners in the project include the Community Rehabilitation Department, Community Policing Unit, Conscious Youth Development Program, RESTORE Belize, the Belize Chamber of Commerce and Industry, the Belize City Council Mayor’s Office and UNDP Belize. Mayor Zenaida Moya said that the Council will be providing the venue for the center. She has approved a space at the Commercial Center to be the drop in center for youths in the program. She said that organizers of the program are fully aware that there are areas of the city that youths from certain areas are afraid to access. Therefore, the Commercial Center is an ideal location. In other words, it is neutral turf.

The program is scheduled to commence soon. The organizers have already identified a group of individuals that they hope to include in the program. However, they continue to depend on community partners to identify and encourage others to join. Smith said that primary targets are youths that have dropped out of school. She said her greatest hope for the program “is to provide hope for city youths”. She said they need to know that “we are serious about their development”.

-1 1 0 59 12/15/2011 06:00:00 62 0/0/0000 00:00:00 0 0 0/0/0000 00:00:00 12/15/2011 06:00:00 0/0/0000 00:00:00 show_title= link_titles= show_intro= show_section= link_section= show_category= link_category= show_vote= show_author= show_create_date= show_modify_date= show_pdf_icon= show_print_icon= show_email_icon= language= keyref= readmore= 1 0 2 0 461 robots= author= 4190 St. Catherine Academy and St. Michael’s College Central Region Basketball Champions st-catherine-academy-and-st-michaels-college-central-region-basketball-champions

KachiefThe 2011-2012 Central Region Secondary Schools Basketball Competition came to an end on Friday December 9, 2011, at the Belize City Centre with the second and final game in both the female and male championship series.

In the female championship game, St. Catherine Academy defeated Wesley College by the score of 27-23 to capture the coveted title. The top scorers for St. Catherine Academy were Gilda Estrada with 12 points and Chelsi Noralez with 2 points.

For Wesley College, the top scorers were Genae Samuels with 12 points and Shanice Neal and Shanice Humes with 4 points each.

On Thursday December 8, in game one of the female championship series, St. Catherine Academy defeated Wesley College by the score of 24-18. The top scorer for St. Catherine Academy was Gilda Estrada with 14 points, while the top scorer for Wesley College was Genae Samuels with 8 points. 

In the male championship game, defending champions Sadie Vernon Technical High School repeated as champions when they defeated St. John’s College by the score of 94-79. The top scorers for Sadie Vernon Technical High School were Kashief Thomas with 36 points including 3- 3 pointers, Andrew Ortiz with 18 points, and Roderick Williams with 14 points.
Meanwhile, the top scorers for St. John’s College were Devin Daly with 35 points, Tarique Middleton with 13 points, and Alex Ellis with 12 points.

In game one played on Thursday December 8, 2011, Sadie Vernon Technical also won over St. John’s College by the score of 85-70. The top scorers for Sadie Vernon Technical were Kashief Thomas with 52 points, Andrew Ortiz with 14 points, and Lincey Lopez with 10 points.

For St. John’s College, the top scorers were Tarique Middleton with 24 points, Devin Daly with 21 points, and Alex Ellis with 12 points.

We say congratulations to the champions and to all our student-athletes who participated in the competition.

-1 1 0 41 12/15/2011 06:00:00 62 0/0/0000 00:00:00 0 0 0/0/0000 00:00:00 12/15/2011 06:00:00 0/0/0000 00:00:00 show_title= link_titles= show_intro= show_section= link_section= show_category= link_category= show_vote= show_author= show_create_date= show_modify_date= show_pdf_icon= show_print_icon= show_email_icon= language= keyref= readmore= 1 0 5 0 1556 robots= author= 4191 David Henderson captures Alpheus Williams Cycling Classic david-henderson-captures-alpheus-williams-cycling-classic

The Belize Cycling Association in collaboration with the Ministry of Health and UNDP sponsored the 14th Annual Alpheus Williams Cycling Classic on Sunday December 11, 2011. The annual event attracted 56 riders in the Elite and Under-23 as well as the Masters Categories 2 & 3.

The 48 miles race started in Belmopan and concluded here in Belize City, where David Henderson of Team INDECO was the first rider to cross the finish line in a time of 1:42:53 to take this year’s title. The second rider to cross the line was Kyne Gentle of D&D Consultancy, 3rd place went to Byron Pope of Benny’s Megabytes, and 4th place went to Marlon Castillo of Santino’s Belize while Gregory Lovell also of Santino’s Belize rounded off the top five.

The other top finishers in the race includes Luigi Urbina of C-Ray Belize, Allen Castillo of Benny’s Megabytes, Darnell Barrow of Santino’s Belize, Tariq Cano of Team INDECO, and Jose Choto of Western Spirits to round off the top ten finishers.

In the Masters Categories 2 & 3 event, the first rider to cross the finish line was Luigi Urbina of C-Ray Cycling Team in a time of 1:42:32. The second rider to cross the line was Jose Choto of Western Spirit, 3rd place went to Quinton Hamilton of Santino’s Belize, and 4th place went to Leroy Casasola also of Santino’s Belize while 5th place went to Orson Butler of M&M Engineering.

In the Junior category, the first rider to cross the finish line was Deezan Spence of Twin Towns Cycling in a time of 1:44:21. The second rider to cross the line was Riis Cattouse of C-Ray Cycling, 3rd place went to Wassani Castro of Clear the Land Cycling, and 4th place went to Christopher Sandoval of Cayo Uprising, while 5th place went to Jeamar Guerra of Greedy’s.

-1 1 0 41 12/15/2011 06:00:00 62 0/0/0000 00:00:00 0 0 0/0/0000 00:00:00 12/15/2011 06:00:00 0/0/0000 00:00:00 show_title= link_titles= show_intro= show_section= link_section= show_category= link_category= show_vote= show_author= show_create_date= show_modify_date= show_pdf_icon= show_print_icon= show_email_icon= language= keyref= readmore= 1 0 4 0 185 robots= author= 4192 Softball mourns the passing of Audrey Lamb softball-mourns-the-passing-of-audrey-lamb

The President, Executive and the Management Council of the Belize Softball Federation regrets to announce the sudden passing of Audrey Lamb, a former National Female Team Third baseman, she is the sister of Ruth Lamb, and the mother of Tyronne, Densmore and Ashton Edwards of the Tuff “E” Nuff Interoffice Softball Team.

The Management Council of the Federation is requesting all softballers, coaches, and umpires to attend the funeral service which is scheduled for Sunday December 18, 2011, at the King’s Park Church of the Nazarene on Princess Margaret Drive.

-1 1 0 41 12/15/2011 06:00:00 62 0/0/0000 00:00:00 0 0 0/0/0000 00:00:00 12/15/2011 06:00:00 0/0/0000 00:00:00 show_title= link_titles= show_intro= show_section= link_section= show_category= link_category= show_vote= show_author= show_create_date= show_modify_date= show_pdf_icon= show_print_icon= show_email_icon= language= keyref= readmore= 1 0 3 0 569 robots= author= 4193 San Pedro High to host National High School Basketball san-pedro-high-to-host-national-high-school-basketball

San Pedro High School on Ambergris Caye will play host to the Annual National Secondary Schools Basketball Competition on Friday December 16 and Saturday December 17, 2011.

The schools that have earned the right to represent their respective regions are: from the North – female: Muffles College, and in male: San Pedro High School. From the South- female: Delille Academy and male: Stann Creek Ecumenical High School, from the West- female: Sacred Heart College and male: Belmopan Comprehensive High School and from Central- female: St. Catherine Academy and male: Sadie Vernon Technical High School.

The competition will commence on Friday with four games on the schedule. In the first game in female competition, it will be St. Catherine Academy going up against Delille Academy. In the first male game, it will be Sadie Vernon Technical against Stann Creek Ecumenical High School.

In female game two, it will be Muffles College against Sacred Heart College and in male game #2 it will be the host school San Pedro High against Belmopan Comprehensive School.
The competition will continue on Saturday December 17, with the consolation games and the championship games in both the female and male competitions.

-1 1 0 41 12/15/2011 06:00:00 62 0/0/0000 00:00:00 0 0 0/0/0000 00:00:00 12/15/2011 06:00:00 0/0/0000 00:00:00 show_title= link_titles= show_intro= show_section= link_section= show_category= link_category= show_vote= show_author= show_create_date= show_modify_date= show_pdf_icon= show_print_icon= show_email_icon= language= keyref= readmore= 1 0 2 0 53 robots= author= 4194 Cycling Association General Meeting set for Sunday cycling-association-general-meeting-set-for-sunday

The Belize Cycling Association informs all team managers that its Annual General Meeting is scheduled for Sunday December 18, 2011, at the Football Federation of Belize Conference Room in Belmopan.

The Annual General Meeting is scheduled to commence at 10:00 am. The association is asking all to attend and to be on time. 

-1 1 0 41 12/15/2011 06:00:00 62 0/0/0000 00:00:00 0 0 0/0/0000 00:00:00 12/15/2011 06:00:00 0/0/0000 00:00:00 show_title= link_titles= show_intro= show_section= link_section= show_category= link_category= show_vote= show_author= show_create_date= show_modify_date= show_pdf_icon= show_print_icon= show_email_icon= language= keyref= readmore= 1 0 1 0 127 robots= author= 4195 My Reflections of Dentistry in Belize my-reflections-of-dentistry-in-belize

Book Review by Penny Casasola

 “My Reflections of Dentistry in Belize” written by Dr. Chris. Bennett is a big picture approach to dentistry in his homeland of Belize.  Dr. Bennett cleverly takes one back in time to the Central American country of Belize, to how life used to be for a young man growing up in Belize City, the book relates Dr. Bennett’s drive to fulfill his career ambitions and to make life meaningful for himself, his nation and the world.


The book documents a proactive approach to oral health, and the struggles and achievement of a man of vision in the area of oral health.  The book is about the History, Attitudes and Culture of Dentistry and Dental Treatment in Belize”. It describes the profound impact and transformation, which can be achieved in our Belizean people, when a more positive attitude is created towards a dentistry.

The period of time spans the 1960’s to the new millennium. In the book, Dr. Bennett takes one on a journey through his formative years in Belize to England and back to Belize.  The book proves that Southside Belize young men who possess ambition, drive and perseverance can reach their highest career potential.  He continuously displays these qualities throughout the book. 

“My Reflections on Dentistry in Belize” by Dr. Chris Bennett describes how a stewardship approach of service before self-interest allows Dr. Bennett to boldly step out with faith in God, his country, and his devotion to serve mankind universally.  The book is about a community approach to dental health; it discusses the importance of nutrition and dental hygiene from the earliest stage of life to dental care of the elderly. 

The book should be of interest not only to dentists and historians, but to everybody.  Besides having some practical aspects of dental health education and dental disease prevention, a variety of topics are dealt with, which include dental tourism, dental folklores in Belize, the Mennonites in Belize, and dental treatment, dental diseases in Belize due to ethnic differences, Some eating habits in Belize which affect good dental health etc.

In the book, Dr. Chris Bennett, discusses how dental health evolved into a public health priority in the country of Belize and he gives credit to and acknowledges all who pioneered dental health in Belize.  Of great interest to me is his diligence in the research and his systematic documentation on the school dental programs he collaborated in.  This book makes an excellent gift.  The book has a number of interesting historical photographs, is full of humor, is enlightening, and easy to read and should be a required reading in schools.  “My Reflections of Dentistry in Belize” is a must read for all who desire a beautiful smile and good health.  After reading the Book, “you will extract the truth and not the tooth”. -1 1 0 59 12/15/2011 06:00:00 64 Penny Casasola 0/0/0000 00:00:00 0 0 0/0/0000 00:00:00 12/15/2011 06:00:00 0/0/0000 00:00:00 show_title= link_titles= show_intro= show_section= link_section= show_category= link_category= show_vote= show_author= show_create_date= show_modify_date= show_pdf_icon= show_print_icon= show_email_icon= language= keyref= readmore= 1 0 1 0 46 robots= author= 4196 PM Barrow: No Tax Increase!!! IMF Can Go Fly a Kite pm-barrow-no-tax-increase-imf-can-go-fly-a-kite

P.M.The International Monetary Fund (IMF) is responsible to facilitate international trade, promote sustainable economic growth, secure financial stability and reduce poverty in member countries around the world. Members often reach out to them in time of budgetary challenges and huge deficits. They have been known to be very willing to give however, their loans are usually accompanied by strict conditions.


Economists around the world have criticized the IMF, saying that their loan conditions are counterproductive and retard social stability. One such condition is structural adjustment programs. Those lead to an increase in poverty because it mandates a government to cut public spending and increase taxes in order to balance budgets. Such policies in a weak economy make it even more difficult for the poor to strive since social programs are often the first ones cut.

The IMF recently released its report on Belize. Among its many recommendations, the IMF wants the Government of Belize to raise the General Sale Tax (GST) from 12.5 to 15%. It also wants government to withdraw its tax concessions on basic food items and medical supplies. Prime Minister Barrow was asked about those recommendations on Friday, December 16. He outright rejected them. The mere thought that the IMF wants the government to discontinue its food cost relief measures caused him to become visibly upset. In regards to increasing GST, he said, “The IMF can cry until the cows come home. Absolutely not, I reject that out of hand.” PM Barrow said the IMF can only force Belize to increase tax if we need to borrow money from them and we “absolutely do not need to do any such thing.” He concluded by saying, “The IMF can go fly a kite!”

-1 6 0 54 12/22/2011 06:00:00 62 0/0/0000 00:00:00 0 0 0/0/0000 00:00:00 12/22/2011 06:00:00 0/0/0000 00:00:00 show_title= link_titles= show_intro= show_section= link_section= show_category= link_category= show_vote= show_author= show_create_date= show_modify_date= show_pdf_icon= show_print_icon= show_email_icon= language= keyref= readmore= 1 0 1 0 2731 robots= author= 4197 Chendo will not back down chendo-will-not-back-down

RosendoEven though Rosendo Urbina Sr. and his family have recently been threatened, he has not lost the nerve and remains in the prestigious post as UDP Standard Bearer for Orange Walk South.


Rosendo Urbina, Jr. and his wife, Rebecca, became the unfortunate victims of an extortion attempt on the evening of Sunday, December 4. They were held at gunpoint by several armed, masked men wearing dark clothing.

The terrifying experience included an exchange where one of the men made note of Urbina's phone number, and gave specific instructions that they must produce a large sum of money by a certain time or his family members would be hurt. The men then stole Rebecca's cellular phone and their vehicle, and they then made their escape.

The Urbina family got the police involved almost immediately, and the commanding officers advised them not to bow to such primitive intimidation. While many suspect that they became the targets of a Mexican drug cartel, police believe that these were local individuals, who used the cartel's name to further intimidate the Urbina's; they most likely had international individuals to assist in making contact with the family.

Three days after the extortion attempt, the Urbina family decided to leave the country for their safety, and since then, none of them has been seen in public until Tuesday. Rosendo Urbina Sr. met with UDP Party Leader, Hon. Dean Barrow, and the Deputy Party Leader, Gaspar Vega on Tuesday at the Party Leader's Belize City office on Coney Drive. Urbina was presented with the possibility of stepping down should he believe that his family's life may be in danger, and the meeting ended with the decision that he would remain in the political race.

Although he would not give an in-depth comment, Urbina confirmed to the media that his candidacy is still alive. It is note-worthy that even in the face obvious security issues, he will still continue on the campaign trail. -1 6 0 53 12/22/2011 06:00:00 62 0/0/0000 00:00:00 0 0 0/0/0000 00:00:00 12/22/2011 06:00:00 0/0/0000 00:00:00 show_title= link_titles= show_intro= show_section= link_section= show_category= link_category= show_vote= show_author= show_create_date= show_modify_date= show_pdf_icon= show_print_icon= show_email_icon= language= keyref= readmore= 1 0 2 0 2368 robots= author= 4198 UDP spreads the Christmas spirit countrywide udp-spreads-the-christmas-spirit-countrywide

The United Democratic Party and all standard bearers and have been out in full force for the last week spreading joy to thousands of Belizeans across the entire country. Everywhere you turn over the past few days, you can see the UDP Standard Bearers and Area representatives giving out gifts to constituents. And everyone is included, the young and the old. By the thousands people are coming out to receive from the party that has always and continues to put the people as a first priority.


In every constituency, machineries have been activated in order to ensure that no one is left behind. The gifts are not grandiose but they are meaningful. They range from toys for children to food supplies and groceries as well as hams and turkeys for all. Not a single constituency is left behind and everyone is included. This is the true sprit of Christmas and the true spirit of the UDP! -1 6 0 53 12/22/2011 06:00:00 62 0/0/0000 00:00:00 0 0 0/0/0000 00:00:00 12/22/2011 06:00:00 0/0/0000 00:00:00 show_title= link_titles= show_intro= show_section= link_section= show_category= link_category= show_vote= show_author= show_create_date= show_modify_date= show_pdf_icon= show_print_icon= show_email_icon= language= keyref= readmore= 1 0 1 0 1934 robots= author= 4199 Three sex offenders to stand trial three-sex-offenders-to-stand-trial

The first to be committed at the end of a preliminary inquiry was Kareem Hamilton, who was accused of sodomizing a teenaged boy. Hamilton appeared before Chief Magistrate, Anne Marie Smith, unrepresented. He was asked if he had any reason why the case against him should not be committed to the Supreme Court for trial and he had no reason. His case was then sent up the the Supreme Court. The Chief Magistrate informed him that based on the allegations made by the minor there was a Prima Facie case against him. His case was committed to the Supreme Court for trial at the April 16, 2012 session of the Supreme Court. 


Hamilton, 24, was arraigned on June 14th in Court #1 on a single count of committing an unnatural crime.  He is accused of carnally knowing a 15-year-old boy.  The alleged incident is said to have occurred sometime between April 28th and 29th in Belize City where he had carnal intercourse against the order of nature with the boy.   He was granted bail of $6,000 plus two sureties. Hamilton was unable to meet his bail and remains in custody at the Hattieville Prison. The court prosecutor, Sgt. Egbert Castillo is also relying on the evidence of  other witnesses including police officers such as Inspector, Hilberto Romero;  a medico legal form from the doctor who had examined the child; the child’s mother, who also gave police a statement and three statements that the victim himself gave police.

The second case to be committed by Chief Magistrate Smith was that of 22-year-old Steven Armstrong, who is charged with carnal knowledge of a 15-year-old female. Armstrong is accused of having sex with the minor on July 30 of this year.  The prosecution is relying on evidence from the victim; social services personnel, who gave a report on the matter; and a medico legal form provided by the medical doctor as well as police witnesses’ testimonies.    Armstrong was granted bail in the amount of $7,000 plus two sureties of $3,500 each.

The third person to be committed was 38-year-old watchman, Carlos Matura, who was arraigned on January 12th on a charge of rape and aggravated burglary upon a 28-year-old mother who was allegedly raped whilst inside her home with her children.   The rape occurred on Wednesday, January 5. The woman claimed that at about 8:00 p.m.,  she was at home, when she stepped outside to give a bicycle to her neighbor and upon her return, went to check on her three children, who were already inside their bedroom.  According to the victim, she then left the children’s room and went into her bedroom and then left and went to lie down in her sofa.After about 20 minutes, while lying down, she felt someone jump upon her, placed a knife at her neck, covered her mouth with his left hand. The attacker then told her not to scream. “No mek no noise.  This yah time ah wah mek sure ah kill yo.  I will chop up yuh body and put it in a garbage bag.”  That’s when she said she recognized the voice to be someone she knew well.  He then told her that if she wanted to live, she must give him sex first.  Her attacker then threw her onto her bed where he raped her. Matura, like the other men, was offered bail in the sum of $5,000 plus two sureties.  Before the case was committed, the victim, who was present was asked if Matura ever tried to contact her and that’s when she told the Chief Magistrate that he had done it once.  She told her that he should not be doing that and that if he should do so again, she must report the matter to the police.   Matura was told that he must stay away from the victim and if he should ever try to interfere with her again, his bail will be revoked. -1 1 0 39 12/22/2011 06:00:00 62 0/0/0000 00:00:00 0 0 0/0/0000 00:00:00 12/22/2011 06:00:00 0/0/0000 00:00:00 show_title= link_titles= show_intro= show_section= link_section= show_category= link_category= show_vote= show_author= show_create_date= show_modify_date= show_pdf_icon= show_print_icon= show_email_icon= language= keyref= readmore= 1 0 5 0 1133 robots= author= 4200 Top Ten Reasons Why Francis Wants out of Freetown top-ten-reasons-why-francis-wants-out-of-freetown

By now, most people know that the Leader of the Opposition is trying desperately to escape the trashing that the PUP will take in the Freetown Division at the hands of Lee Mark Chang. PUP insiders inform us that there is heavy bargaining and at times strong-arming in the PUP to get the party leader out of Freetown and into a “winnable” division. The question is “Why run from Freetown?” Well, there are many reasons why it would serve Francis Fonseca best not to put his name on a Freetown ballot. We, at the Guardian, have compiled the top ten reasons and they all start with the name, Lee Mark Chang.


These are in no specific order of importance for all have equal and tremendous potential to improve the standard of living for Freetown residents.  (1) Lee Mark lobbied to get water for residents of the Belama Phase IV area. Residents were living in the area without access to water and he approached the Government of Belize and pleaded on behalf of Phase IV residents. Public pipes were immediately placed as a temporary solution and eventually the BWSL Board approved a water extension project for the area. (2) Lee Mark approached the Ministry of Works and shortly after the main streets of Phase IV were repaired. (3) After that successful effort, he went to the Ministry of Works once again to lobby for the paving of Albert Hoy Street and other important feeder roads that lead from the Northern Highway into the Belama area. (4) Over 700 students of the Freetown Division receive a school bag every summer. (5) Lee Mark’s lobbying at the Ministry of Education has allowed over 300 students of Freetown to receive education assistance every year for the past three years. (6) Out of his own pocket, Lee Mark has sponsored a Christmas assistance program for the last three years through which even the least fortunate in the area have experienced a blessed Christmas. (7) Lee Mark’s Freetown Committee adapted and has maintained parks in the Freetown area to provide a pleasant recreational area for youths. (8) He lobbied for electricity in the Belama Phase III and Phase IV areas. (9) He financed and personally assisted with labour on a project for the construction of a pedestrian bridge that linked the Phase III and IV areas. (10) He has provided social assistance to countless residents of Freetown and beyond. His generosity is a trait that surfaced years before politics and residents of Freetown are now the focus of that generosity.

Most of those accomplishments were met even before Lee Mark became Standard Bearer for the division. While the elected Representative was not even attending House meetings and representing the voice of his people, Lee Mark was in every Ministry lobbying on behalf of the residents of  Freetown. He was merely the UDP caretaker of the area. The post of standard bearer was not even a guarantee and he worked tirelessly nonetheless. Imagine what more he will bring to Freetown when he becomes a Minister of Government. On the other hand, nothing can be shown from the monthly funds allocated to Francis Fonseca for the Freetown Division. Perhaps payment to whoever tore down the “Funds-Taker” sign on the over cross is the only expenditure that could be linked to the monthly subvention. However, signs don’t vote. They can tear down the sign but they cannot hide his record. He has been absent as an Area Representative and residents of Freetown are daring him to put his name on a ballot in that area. -1 1 0 40 12/22/2011 06:00:00 62 12/22/2011 21:46:53 64 0 0/0/0000 00:00:00 12/22/2011 06:00:00 0/0/0000 00:00:00 show_title= link_titles= show_intro= show_section= link_section= show_category= link_category= show_vote= show_author= show_create_date= show_modify_date= show_pdf_icon= show_print_icon= show_email_icon= language= keyref= readmore= 2 0 13 0 1743 robots= author= 4201 Granny caught smuggling drugs into jail granny-caught-smuggling-drugs-into-jail

RositaPolice arrested and charged a 53-year-old woman after she allegedly tried to smuggle about a quarter of a pound of weed into the Hattieville Prison.


At about 3:30 p.m. on Monday December 19th, Rosita Grey was making a visit to the Prison when a prison officer, conducting routine checks on visitors, made the discovery of the marijuana, which was hidden inside four different foam plates that contained food.   The compressed weed was inside plastic bags and placed under the food inside each food container to conceal it from authorities.   After the weed was discovered, officers of the Hattieville Police Station were called in and Grey was escorted to the Hattieville Police Station and later transferred to Queen Street Police Station in Belize City.

She appeared in Magistrate’s Court on Tuesday December 20th ,where she was charged with one count of drug trafficking.   Grey was represented in court by Attorney Anthony Sylvester. He  made a submission for bail to be offered to his client on the grounds that it’s Grey’s first run- in with the law and that while the charge of drug trafficking is a very serious offense, he asked the Magistrate to use her discretion in granting her bail of a reasonable amount.  The court prosecutor, Inspector Hector Rodriguez, informed the court that he would not object to bail and she was offered bail in the sum of $8,000 plus two sureties of $4,000 each. Grey is due back in Court #2 on February 9.

-1 1 0 39 12/22/2011 06:00:00 62 0/0/0000 00:00:00 0 0 0/0/0000 00:00:00 12/22/2011 06:00:00 0/0/0000 00:00:00 show_title= link_titles= show_intro= show_section= link_section= show_category= link_category= show_vote= show_author= show_create_date= show_modify_date= show_pdf_icon= show_print_icon= show_email_icon= language= keyref= readmore= 1 0 4 0 1449 robots= author= 4202 Man beaten with a bat- attacker remanded man-beaten-with-a-bat-attacker-remanded

AndyA  Bowen & Bowen employee was attacked from behind ith an aluminum bat and it resulted in him being hospitalized. Police have since arrested and charged 30-year-old boat captain, Andy Hernandez. He appeared in Magistrate’s Court where he was charged with grievous harm. He pleaded not guilty to the charge when he appeared before Magistrate Roberto Ordonez.   The court prosecutor objected to bail on the grounds that the police have indicated that August is presently admitted to ward at the KHMH allegedly suffering from a broken rib cage.Magistrate Ordonez upheld the objection to bail and remanded Hernandez into custody at the Hattieville Prison until December 30.


In a report to police, Kenrick August, a resident of #148 East Canal and driver for Bowen & Bowen, said that at about 8:30 p.m., he went to Jusco Plaza located on Freetown Road to purchase boledo and shortly after doing so, he went to his car. As he was entering his car, he was attacked from behind by Hernandez. According to August, Hernandez began to hit him on the left elbow, shoulder and rib cage with an aluminum bat. August was admitted to ward on Saturday, December 17. -1 1 0 39 12/22/2011 06:00:00 62 0/0/0000 00:00:00 0 0 0/0/0000 00:00:00 12/22/2011 06:00:00 0/0/0000 00:00:00 show_title= link_titles= show_intro= show_section= link_section= show_category= link_category= show_vote= show_author= show_create_date= show_modify_date= show_pdf_icon= show_print_icon= show_email_icon= language= keyref= readmore= 1 0 3 0 869 robots= author= 4203 Burglar caught stealing phone cards burglar-caught-stealing-phone-cards

EricA man was caught in the act of burglarizing a store in Belize City and stealing phone cards.


Eric Barrow, 50, appeared in Magistrate’s court on Monday December 20th where he was chargedwith burglary. He appeared before Senior Magistrate Sharon Frazer where he was charged with one count of robbery.   Barrow pleaded not guilty to the charge and was offered bail in the sum of $7,000 plus two sureties of $3,500, which he could not meet and he remanded to the Hattieville Prison until he can do so. Barrow is due back in Court #2 on February 14th. 2012.

Chinese Businessman Andy Chen reported to police that on November 10th at about 9:45 a.m., he heard a noise coming from a window.  He became curious about the noise and he went outside to see where the noise was coming from. That’s when he saw a man, whom he identified as Eric Barrow, his neighbor, with a wire in his hand. By the time Chen spotted Barrow, he had already managed to remove a bundle of Smart calling cards from inside his store.  Before Chen could do anything the thief ran off with 25 five dollars phone cards. Barrow was detained over the weekend and brought to court where he was charged with burglary.   Barrow has a theft case pending trial before Court #2.  -1 1 0 39 12/22/2011 06:00:00 62 0/0/0000 00:00:00 0 0 0/0/0000 00:00:00 12/22/2011 06:00:00 0/0/0000 00:00:00 show_title= link_titles= show_intro= show_section= link_section= show_category= link_category= show_vote= show_author= show_create_date= show_modify_date= show_pdf_icon= show_print_icon= show_email_icon= language= keyref= readmore= 1 0 1 0 1168 robots= author= 4204 YPF’s Christmas Spirit ypfs-christmas-spirit

MembersIt is the season for giving, when we all put in that extra to do something special for those persons dear to us. One exceptional group of young people decided to their time and effort to reach out to a family in need of just that little Christmas spirit to share the joy of the season.

The UDP YPF (Youths Progressing for the Future) is a youth group that has been in effect since May of this year. They have partaken in various community activities, fundraising and outreach throughout the year. The group presently maintains 37 members strong, and arguably is the most entertaining, self-maintained and effective group out there.

The members of the group, ranging between ages 10 to 27, decided to take on an outreach project for one of their less fortunate members. Sometime in October of this year, young Emerson,who is 10-years old, joined the YPF youth group. He was an active member of the group and enjoyed coming to the meetings. Unfortunately, due to a sudden change of location, we lost track of young Emerson. In the spirit of giving, the young members decided that during this season they would go out and locate young Emerson’s family, and show their interest in Emerson rejoining the group and also give the family of eight something special. The group members each brought in a few items to fill a gift basket for the family. We luckily located the family in the distant areas of Lake Independence, commonly known as “Gungoolung”. Though Emerson and his younger siblings were not home, we located their mother and made her Christmas much more special with a wonderful gift basket.

Although there might not be much we have, there is still much we can give. The mother clearly showed how much the little help we offered was appreciated. She expressed to us that young Emerson will rejoin the group and how small efforts like this, from the youngest of children, help to make the Christmas season even more special in Belize.
The UDP youth arm wishes the community a Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year. We ask that you all remember the spirit of the Season.


 

-1 1 0 40 12/22/2011 06:00:00 62 0/0/0000 00:00:00 0 0 0/0/0000 00:00:00 12/22/2011 06:00:00 0/0/0000 00:00:00 show_title= link_titles= show_intro= show_section= link_section= show_category= link_category= show_vote= show_author= show_create_date= show_modify_date= show_pdf_icon= show_print_icon= show_email_icon= language= keyref= readmore= 1 0 15 0 983 robots= author= 4205 Western Paradise Village celebrates Christmas western-paradise-village-celebrates-christmas

ChildrenThe Western Paradise Village council along with Area Representative, Hon. Michael Hutchinson, and Word at Work Ministries and villagers came together on Sunday December 18th to celebrate Christmas. The event was well attended with over 200 children coming out to share in the Christmas spirit and gifts. Village Chairman Terrence Cassasola explained that gift were handed out to children as well as elders who attended the event.


Integral in the organization of the event was the chairman along with Hon. Michael Hutchison, Word at Work Ministries, Mrs.Logan, B.M.L. Maya Belize Recycling Company, C.P. Building , Imer Hernandez, and other villagers who took time out and cooked, baked and assisted in the organization. -1 1 0 40 12/22/2011 06:00:00 62 0/0/0000 00:00:00 0 0 0/0/0000 00:00:00 12/22/2011 06:00:00 0/0/0000 00:00:00 show_title= link_titles= show_intro= show_section= link_section= show_category= link_category= show_vote= show_author= show_create_date= show_modify_date= show_pdf_icon= show_print_icon= show_email_icon= language= keyref= readmore= 1 0 14 0 1089 robots= author= 4206 Hon. Gaspar Vega Opens Nature Park in Trial Farm hon-gaspar-vega-opens-nature-park-in-trial-farm

Hon.On Monday, December 19, Hon. Gaspar Vega, Minister of Natural Resources and Area Representative for Orange Walk North, officially opened the Otro Benque-Trial Farm Nature Park. The Trial Farm Village Council collaborated with the Protected Areas Conservation Trust (PACT)to restore the riparian forest along the river and beautify the area. The park includes an area designated for recreation and picnics.


Deputy Prime Minister Vega delivered the keynote address at the opening. He said besides being a recreation and picnic area, the park will be used to sensitize students on the importance of the riparian forest. A riparian forest is a forested area of land adjacent to a body of water such as a river, stream, pond, lake, canal, etc. It helps control sediments, reduce the damaging effects of flooding and aid in stabilizing river banks. Organisms that live in riparian forests haveadapted to periodic flooding. Many not only tolerate it, but require it in order to maintain health and complete their lifecycles. Removal of vegetation is common along river banks and the act destroys the habitat of countless organisms. Getting rid of those organisms also affects other organisms that depend on them as a food source. Riparian forests play an important role on the harmony of the eco-system.

The total cost of the project is approximately $150,000. PACT provided $100,000 and the Trial Farm Village Council provided $50,000 in-kind contribution.

-1 1 0 40 12/22/2011 06:00:00 62 0/0/0000 00:00:00 0 0 0/0/0000 00:00:00 12/22/2011 06:00:00 0/0/0000 00:00:00 show_title= link_titles= show_intro= show_section= link_section= show_category= link_category= show_vote= show_author= show_create_date= show_modify_date= show_pdf_icon= show_print_icon= show_email_icon= language= keyref= readmore= 1 0 12 0 1212 robots= author= 4207 New school for remote village of Toledo District new-school-for-remote-village-of-toledo-district-

GroundChildren in Sunday Wood Village, one of the most remote communities in the Toledo District, will soon have a new school building.  The school project was launched during a ground breaking ceremony on Thursday, December 15 at the project site in Sunday Wood Village.


The project will be implemented by the Social Investment Fund at an approximate cost of $422,000 and financed by the Government of Belize through a loan from the Caribbean Development Bank. It includes the construction of a one-story reinforced-concrete building 25 feet wide by 120 feet long with a 6ft verandah. The building will house three (25feet x 30 feet) classrooms with two movable partitions, a male and female  bathroom block and a principal’s office. The foundation will be designed for a two storey building in anticipation of future expansion.  All internal and external walls will be plastered and painted.  The building will include solid timber doors and aluminum - louvered windows. Provisions of electrical, plumbing, water supply and waste water systems in accordance with the regulation of respective authorities will be included in the project.  Furniture and a solar panel system will also be incorporated. The building will be used as a hurricane shelter in the event of an emergency.

The Sunday Wood RC School is a multi-grade school and has an enrollment of 107 students and 21 pre-school children. There is one main concrete building, which houses Infant 2 and Standards 1 & 2. The wooden building which houses standards 3,4,5 and 6 is in a deteriorating condition.  There is no ceiling on this building, which creates an uncomfortable environment due to excessive heat during the dry months. The zinc on the roof is dilapidated causing children to get wet when it rains. The thatch roof building, which houses the pre-school and infant 1 is also in poor condition.

The southern region of Belize has traditionally been considered the most under-resourced part of the country. The Toledo District, where the target community is located, has 46% of its population living in poverty.  Sunday Wood Village was established in 1984 by Ketchi Mayas and has a population of approximately 358. Most of the villagers depend on subsistence farming. Their main crop is rice, which is sold at the Rice Mill in Big Falls. The farmers also cultivate beans and corn for family use.
The guest speaker at the project launching was Hon. Peter Eden Martinez, Minister of  Human Development and Social Transformation and Area Representative for Toledo East. He stressed the importance of education as a way to escape the grasp of poverty. He promised that the government will continue extending resources to the Toledo District. The Ministry of Education currently guarantees the $300 education assistance to every student of the Toledo District. 

-1 1 0 40 12/22/2011 06:00:00 62 0/0/0000 00:00:00 0 0 0/0/0000 00:00:00 12/22/2011 06:00:00 0/0/0000 00:00:00 show_title= link_titles= show_intro= show_section= link_section= show_category= link_category= show_vote= show_author= show_create_date= show_modify_date= show_pdf_icon= show_print_icon= show_email_icon= language= keyref= readmore= 1 0 11 0 1443 robots= author= 4208 Megalomaniac’s Attempt to Save Business Franchise- Okeke Sipping Simple Juice!!! megalomaniacs-attempt-to-save-business-franchise-okeke-sipping-simple-juice

StevenWho is Steven Okeke? Why would someone want to threaten Mr. Irrelevant? Steven Okeke is the immigrant owner of a juice franchise, who wishes to be Mayor of Belize City. The sad reality of Steven Okeke is that the voting public is not paying him any attention and he is now resorting to pulling off media stunts. Even his countrymen say that he is a “douchebag”. To give an idea of just how insignificant Okeke is in the 2012 Belize City Mayoral race, the following parallels may do the trick. Compared to the other individuals campaigning to become Belize City’s new Mayor, Okeke is the Ringo Starr of the Beatles, Tito Jackson of the Jackson 5, Ron Wood of Rolling Stones, Joey Fatone of NSync, Ron Paul of the Republican Presidential Candidates and Florencio Marin Jr. of the PUP Members of the House of Representatives. When people hear the name Steven Okeke, they say, “Who?”


His most recent publicity stunt is one that may cost him in court. He accused Alfonso Noble of threatening to destroy his business. The bogus tale went from unlikely to simply ridiculous when he claimed that his customers were being threatened and followed as well. Then his employees received death threats through messages and calls. The story was so ridiculous even the polished professional Jules Vasquez lost his cool. Okeke was extremely fortunate during that interview because someone of lesser self-control would have bumped him in the head with the microphone for being silly. The idea that one person even knows the names of Okeke’s employees is far fetched, much less, know their phone numbers. Furthermore, the idea that someone is even paying that amount of attention to Okeke is even more unbelievable.Jules Vasquez did get one thing out of Okeke; the fact that he was the only one who had all his employees’ numbers. It is not a stretch to suggest that if indeed there were any threats issued, the most likely source is the complainant himself.

There is a slim chance however, that he is not making all this stuff up. Maybe he and his staff really do believe that they are receiving threats. That has left people to ask; “What is the special ingredient in Joy’s Juice that causes megalomaniac tendencies?”Megalomania is a psycho-pathological condition characterized by delusional fantasies of power or relevance. Maybe they really believe that they are being threatened. If that is the case, we at the Guardian would like to advise all our friends not to drink the juice. Mental stability is our number one concern and if Okeke’s complaints are genuine, something has caused those close to Joy’s Juice to lose their grasp on reality.
 The most likely explanation to Okeke’s most recent fiasco is that he had over-extended the franchise and is now forced to pull back or face foreclosure. Friends in the business community have reported to the Guardian that Okeke has been around begging for financial contributions. However, no one has been willing to finance someone ,who has no prospect of success. The imminent collapse of his juice franchise tells all there is to know about Okeke as a manager. If he cannot run a few orange juice shops, why should we trust him to run a city? -1 1 0 40 12/22/2011 06:00:00 64 Shane D. Williams 0/0/0000 00:00:00 0 0 0/0/0000 00:00:00 12/22/2011 06:00:00 0/0/0000 00:00:00 show_title= link_titles= show_intro= show_section= link_section= show_category= link_category= show_vote= show_author= show_create_date= show_modify_date= show_pdf_icon= show_print_icon= show_email_icon= language= keyref= readmore= 1 0 10 0 1403 robots= author= 4209 Monument at Marine Parade Roundabout Completed monument-at-marine-parade-roundabout-completed

MayorHer Worship Zenaida Moya, Mayor of Belize City, joined philanthropist Hans Bhojwani on Tuesday, December 20, to officially inaugurate the Belize 30th Anniversary Monument ,located at the center of the Marine Parade Roundabout at its junction with Eyre Street.


Construction started four months ago and a delay gave time for public contentions to surface. However, the final structure is an extremely beautiful Mayan-inspired monument depicting growth of our nation over the last 30 years. Four cannons surround the base of the temple - symbolic of our colonial history.

One megalomaniac opposing the monument claims it does not portray the true identity of Belize. He said it does not represent the original people of the city and the cannons cause a contradiction in theme. The Mayor disputes that argument by saying that the monument honours the original people of the land, our ancestors of colonial times and depicts growth of our city. She said that Belize City is a melting pot of different cultures and all should claim ownership of the monument. Bhojwani said that the inspiration for the structure came from a visit to Cancun where he saw themonument “Chichen Itza”.

Another monument was also inaugurated at the Eve Street Roundabout. Bhojwani dedicated the monument to Sir Manuel Esquivel who he said was Belize’s Prime Minister he admired the most. The monument represents education, environment, energy and employment. It is painted in Sir Manuel’s favourite colour, green.          
In honour of their contribution to the beautification of the city, the side walk from the Mayan-inspired roundabout to the fish market has been officially named Bhojwani Promenade. Bhojwani said the foundation plans to take up other projects in Belize City and Belmopan. He challenged other businessmen to do the same.

-1 1 0 40 12/22/2011 06:00:00 62 0/0/0000 00:00:00 0 0 0/0/0000 00:00:00 12/22/2011 06:00:00 0/0/0000 00:00:00 show_title= link_titles= show_intro= show_section= link_section= show_category= link_category= show_vote= show_author= show_create_date= show_modify_date= show_pdf_icon= show_print_icon= show_email_icon= language= keyref= readmore= 1 0 9 0 1018 robots= author= 4210 The progress continues in Cayo Central - Georgeville Hon. Rene Montero putting the people first!!! the-progress-continues-in-cayo-central-georgeville-hon-rene-montero-putting-the-people-first

It can be written down in the history books of Georgeville that never before has this community benefitted so greatly as it is now doing under Hon. Rene Montero.  Only now after a man’s own heart, comes the Hon. Rene Montero. He has a heart for the people and he shows it not just with talks, but works that are visible to the naked eyes of the people.


He is moving full steam ahead by empowering our youths through sports and bringing the Cayo Central Christmas Cup Football Competition to Georgeville Village. The event has now become an annual event. Through hand in hand work with the Village Council, there is now development of the Community and people. Indeed, Hon. Montero is putting the people of Georgeville and the wider Cayo Central first as he had promised in his manifesto.

The Cayo Central Christmas Cup began on the 23rd October, 2011 with a football marathon that jump-started the official Christmas Cup Competition. The competition has now come to an end on the 18th December, 2011 at the Haltrudes Bennett Football Stadium in Georgeville Village. In the end, the Faya Boyz Football Club won first place, in second place were the Esperanza Warriors, and third place were by the World F.C.

For the female teams ,the Santa Elena Female F.C. won the first place while the Georgeville Female F.C. won the Second Place. Cash prizes and trophies were awarded to the winners and was presented to them by the Hon. Rene Montero, who sponsored the Christmas Cup along with the organizer Mr. Bernz Salazar and the Georgeville Village Council.Through the event ,many villagers benefitted in terms of business.

On behalf of the Chairman, the Georgeville Village Council and people, as the organizer of the Cayo Central Christmas Cup and Vice-Chairman of the Georgeville Village Council, resident stake this opportunity to thank the Hon. Rene Montero for putting the people of Georgeville first and for bringing the Cayo Central Christmas Cup to our Community and may God Bless him and his Government in their future endeavors. -1 1 0 40 12/22/2011 06:00:00 62 0/0/0000 00:00:00 0 0 0/0/0000 00:00:00 12/22/2011 06:00:00 0/0/0000 00:00:00 show_title= link_titles= show_intro= show_section= link_section= show_category= link_category= show_vote= show_author= show_create_date= show_modify_date= show_pdf_icon= show_print_icon= show_email_icon= language= keyref= readmore= 1 0 8 0 1018 robots= author= 4211 Bright Christmas for Residents of Maya Mopan Village bright-christmas-for-residents-of-maya-mopan-village

Hon.Over 250 residents in the New Site Area of Maya Mopan Village in the Stann Creek District will have a bright Christmas and enjoy greater holiday cheer as a result of an electrification project that was officially inaugurated on Tuesday, December 20. The project was implemented by Belize Electricity Limited (BEL) under the auspices of the Social Investment Fund and financed by the Government of Belize through the Commonwealth Debt Initiative (CDI) to the sum of $204,400.00.


The project in Maya Mopan included the provision for an overhead line extension consisting of six 45-foot poles, nineteen 40 -foot poles, eighteen 30-foot poles and the installation of 7-10 and 1-25 KVA 22KV 120/240 V pole mounted transformers to supply 96 lots in Maya Mopan. Forty-five households have already been established in the area. Residents in the area were responsible for the provision of the service entrance, installation of meters and electrical wiring to their homes.

The project also includes the supply of electricity to the new Independence Junior College building currently under construction. The project for Independence Junior College included the provision for a line extension consisting of one 45-foot pole, six 40-foot poles, four 30-foot poles and installation of a 25KVA 22KV 120/240 V pole mounted transformer to supply the Independence Junior College building under construction. The Independence Junior College opened its doors in 2007 to 27 students and caters for working individuals. All classes are held in the high school’s classrooms from 3:00 p.m. to 9:00 p.m. but there is the need to offer classes earlier in the day to provide for non-working students;  hence,  the construction of the new building, which will consist of 6 classrooms. The new facilities will enable the institution to carry out programs during the day and free up the high school classrooms for the implementation of an adult education program to provide for students who did not complete their secondary education.

Maya Mopan Village is located in the southern region of the country in the Stann Creek District.  It is a fast-growing community with a current population of 842 people. The village was named after its inhabitants, who are Mayas of Mopan descent.  It is a culturally homogenous indigenous community.  Presently, the community has a water system, multipurpose building, school, several churches and a resource centre. Prior to the project, electricity was only available in the older area of the village.  Most of the villagers earn their living by working in the citrus, banana and shrimp industries.

The guest speaker at the inauguration of the electricity project in Maya Mopan was Hon. Melvin Hulse, Minister of NEMO and Transport and Area Representative for Stann Creek West. He dubbed the project as early yields of the nationalization of the utility company. Villages across the country will benefit shortly from electrification expansion projects thanks to the new management of BEL. -1 1 0 40 12/22/2011 06:00:00 62 0/0/0000 00:00:00 0 0 0/0/0000 00:00:00 12/22/2011 06:00:00 0/0/0000 00:00:00 show_title= link_titles= show_intro= show_section= link_section= show_category= link_category= show_vote= show_author= show_create_date= show_modify_date= show_pdf_icon= show_print_icon= show_email_icon= language= keyref= readmore= 1 0 7 0 91 robots= author= 4212 Freetown Christmas Party and Lee Mark’s Wireless Gift to Constituents freetown-christmas-party-and-lee-marks-wireless-gift-to-constituents

LeeFor the past three years, Lee Mark’s Freetown Committee has organized a Christmas party for the most needy children in the Freetown Division. This year was no exception. The event was held in the Belama Phase I Community Park. It was a true Christmas blessing to see children of very unfortunate situations having the time of their lives.


They danced to up-tempo Christmas beats and were amazed, tricked and worked out by Ozzy the Clown. The bouncy house was a huge hit as the children lined up for their chance to try and defy gravity. Unlike the party thrown by “Funds Taker”, this one was well organized and humane. Contrary to reports from the Belize Slimes, the children were not fed with fried chicken. They were treated to lunch, hot dogs, cupcakes, juice and a party bag.

The UDP Freetown Committee’s Christmas program includes more than a Christmas Party. Hundreds of residents are receiving hams and other items. Lee Mark Chang has expressed his belief that the role of an Area Representative is to make every day feel like Christmas for his constituents. That is why he works tirelessly during the year to deliver the most vital goods and services to the people of Freetown. In that respect, Lee Mark has made arrangements to provide free Wi-Fi service for residents of the division. A hot spot will be established in the community park of the Belama area in January. The committee is searching for an appropriate location in the King’s Park area of Freetown to set up a hot spot so that students in that area could benefit as well.

The UDP Freetown Committee says it plans to continue working with Lee Mark Chang in 2012 and beyond as he seeks to improve the standard of living for residents, who have been neglected by their Area Representative, Francis Fonseca, for more than a decade. -1 1 0 40 12/22/2011 06:00:00 62 0/0/0000 00:00:00 0 0 0/0/0000 00:00:00 12/22/2011 06:00:00 0/0/0000 00:00:00 show_title= link_titles= show_intro= show_section= link_section= show_category= link_category= show_vote= show_author= show_create_date= show_modify_date= show_pdf_icon= show_print_icon= show_email_icon= language= keyref= readmore= 1 0 6 0 78 robots= author= 4213 Snippets snippets

One of the most faithful readers of this column, who not coincidentally is my wife, asked me to title this week’s submission “Snippets”.  I really did not want to, but decided to do so anyway (for various compelling reasons), only now I have to match the essay to the title. And since I have limited “snippets” to write about, I will, at the conclusion of the discourse, give a year end’s report on the accomplishments of the Orange Walk Town Council. For now, though, let me see what noteworthy topics I can develop to complement my testy heading.


You have to concede that the news item on the alleged threat on Stephen Okeke was humorous, to put it mildly.  I mean, to have received phone calls or texts, which threatened to wipe out his employees’ entire families if the good gentleman does not recuse himself as a mayoral candidate is stretching it, well, a lot too far. I do agree that in these times our citizens may have become thick-skinned to the unimaginable cruelty displayed by the gangs, but with this allegation Okeke takes the cake. I don’t think that he appreciates his slender chances of ever winning the mayoral seat in Belize City, or any public office for that matter. So who would, in his right mind, be imprudent enough to fritter time away in an attempt to discourage the man from his fruitless quest?

The big news-flash last night was the naming of a roundabout in Belize City. Not that I am complaining since if something like this item becomes newsworthy, it means that there are less crimes being committed for that given day. Frankly, if someone is willing to sponsor a community project and wants credit for it, I would not be one to quarrel. On the other hand, if that same person wants to build several meaningless icons with his name on it, I would politely refuse his pursuit for attention. As I said, the issue itself bears little importance, and I bet the new mayor will modify the name anyway.

The former PUP leader recently suggested in the news that the Government’s Christmas allocation for the needy will more than likely trigger a public backlash rather than return wholesome gratitude. Another section of the media compared the action as that of the PUP in early 2008, where they were in a state of urgency to distribute $20 million of the Venezuelan money in an attempt to buy the elections. Let me say something to those charges: first thing, the latter example proves that when people want to vote you out, papa, no matter how much money you share out, you still gone.  Secondly, as it relates to managing community allocations, there can be no comparing the UDP to the massive corruption that went on with the PUP and that twenty million. The friends and families of key PUP ministers reaped big money from that so-called poverty alleviation scheme. Now it’s time that some of government’s benevolence be targeted at those who really need it.

Back to my friend Phillip, the Mayor of OW, and his main accomplishments at the OWTC. We all know that the present Mayor and UDP Councilors do not intend to seek re-election in the next municipals. But judging from the performance around town, no one would guess such a fact. Projects continue to be developed at an accelerated pace in several areas of our town. The Mayor has completed the bus terminal for local runs to the villages, and is now laying concrete foundations for all the vendors  located on the Barracks. Benque Viejo Street, which is over ½ mile, has been completely paved, as well as New Hope Street and a section of Stadium Street. Preparations have begun as we speak to pave Cotton Street as well. The BTIA in OW has completed an arts building within the Queen Elizabeth Park which will serve as a tourism booth for our district. All said and done, Philco has served his term well. I take this opportunity, on behalf of my family, in wishing all of you a blessed Yuletide season.

-1 1 0 40 12/22/2011 06:00:00 64 Jamil Mater 0/0/0000 00:00:00 0 0 0/0/0000 00:00:00 12/22/2011 06:00:00 0/0/0000 00:00:00 show_title= link_titles= show_intro= show_section= link_section= show_category= link_category= show_vote= show_author= show_create_date= show_modify_date= show_pdf_icon= show_print_icon= show_email_icon= language= keyref= readmore= 1 0 5 0 61 robots= author= 4214 The house will be raffled on Friday. the-house-will-be-raffled-on-friday

The UDP Orange Walk Central is giving big this Christmas to the constituents of that division. As part of the celebrations organized for this year, Standard Bearer, Denni Grijalva along with his executive committee will be raffling a house on Friday December 23rd.


The house measures 18’x 24’ and the process to enter into the raffle is a simple one.  Anyone who is a registered voter in the constituency only needs to get in touch with the area leaders and they are automatically issued with a ticket, which gives them the opportunity to win the house.  Speaking to Grijalva, he explained that there is no better way to show his constituents that he cares than by giving them the opportunity to own their own house.
The raffle will take place on Friday in Orange Walk Central. -1 1 0 40 12/22/2011 06:00:00 62 0/0/0000 00:00:00 0 0 0/0/0000 00:00:00 12/22/2011 06:00:00 0/0/0000 00:00:00 show_title= link_titles= show_intro= show_section= link_section= show_category= link_category= show_vote= show_author= show_create_date= show_modify_date= show_pdf_icon= show_print_icon= show_email_icon= language= keyref= readmore= 1 0 4 0 58 robots= author= 4215 Herman spreads Christmas cheer in Albert herman-spreads-christmas-cheer-in-albert

HermanUDP Standard Bearer for the Albert Division, Herman Longsworth has been out in the division spreading the Christmas cheer. He’s not even an area representative as yet but the man, who will be the next representative for the Albert Division, is making his rounds to make some difference in his constitutency.


Longsworth told the Guardian that as much as possible he is trying to reach the underprivileged in his constituency by providing them with a ham. He says it may not be much but those who receive it are very much appreciative of the gesture especially at Christmas time. -1 1 0 40 12/22/2011 06:00:00 62 0/0/0000 00:00:00 0 0 0/0/0000 00:00:00 12/22/2011 06:00:00 0/0/0000 00:00:00 show_title= link_titles= show_intro= show_section= link_section= show_category= link_category= show_vote= show_author= show_create_date= show_modify_date= show_pdf_icon= show_print_icon= show_email_icon= language= keyref= readmore= 1 0 3 0 87 robots= author= 4216 Eulogy for Mr. Norman Gilbert Simplis, Inspector, OBE eulogy-for-mr-norman-gilbert-simplis-inspector-obe

Norman Gilbert Simplis was born in Punta Gorda on July 6th, 1919, to Emma Faux and Nathaniel Simplis.  His mother passed away while he was still a child, so it was his maternal grandmother, Ms. Jane Miller, and her husband, Mr. Matthew Cargill, who dutifully raised Norman. 

Because Mr. Cargill was a teacher and taught at different schools throughout his career, the family moved around quite a bit and Norman therefore attended multiple village schools within the Belize River Valley.  He got his secondary education at St. George’s College, the parent institution of today’s Wesley College, and thereafter went on to study as an apprentice teacher at Flowers Limewalk. 

At the age of 21, he entered the Belize Police Force and thus began what proved to be his true professional vocation.  Norman had a successful career as a police officer and was posted at countless locations throughout Belize.   

Some of his most notable deployments included Benque Viejo, where in 1952 his speedy reaction to an incipient wave of crime and unruly behavior nipped that situation in the bud.

In 1956, when he was transferred to Punta Gorda, his bravery in carrying out his duties under difficult--and even dangerous--conditions, earned him high commendations. But the most famous incident of his long career in the police was arresting and detaining the notorious Francisco Sagastume who “invaded” Belize from Guatemala.  It was a tale he, justifiably, never tired of telling.

Mr. Simplis also loved to recall the visit of Her Royal Highness, Princess Margaret, for which he arranged a PG Guard of Honor that was described by both the police High Command and the Governor as the best of the entire visit.  

Norman retired from the force in February of 1968 as an inspector, covered with honors and commendations. Decades after his retirement, in 2011, his dedication to the force was recognized and he was made an Officer of the Most Excellent Order of the British Empire (OBE) by Her Majesty the Queen of England.

In his retirement, Mr. Simplis dedicated his life to the Lord and His Church.  He devoutly attended St. Andrew’s Anglican Church through rain or shine. But he didn’t just attend service. No, Mr. Simplis was thoroughly engulfed in the activities of his beloved Church.  He had his special seat in the sanctuary, near the altar, one of the few members of the laity afforded this honor.

Mr. Simplis loved special occasions and always looked forward to the annual Harvest Thanksgiving and the Patronal Festival when he would make his classic ‘Palm-branch Arches’ across the aisle in Church and supply produce from his own garden for the harvest.

  One year, he painstakingly built a replica of the Old St. Andrew’s Church for the dedication service of the new building.  His love for the Church was further expressed by his composition of a special hymn for St. Andrew’s Day. 

He always took great delight in personally leading the singing of that hymn during the special patronal service every November, and on the many other occasions that befitted its singing.

 In fact, he was so proud of his hymn that he prepared many copies to distribute to family and friends. 

Bishop Philip Wright remembers Mr. Simplis as the one who guided him through the ins and outs of the parish when he arrived as a young priest in 1993. 

He recalls spending many hours ‘up the hill’ at the home of Mr. Simplis, taking in the wisdom of this insightful man while at the same time enjoying glasses of coconut water and servings of coconut ‘flesh’ or jelly personally harvested by Mr. Simplis--after he discovered this was a favorite of Bishop Wright.

Bishop Wright, of course, is but one of the several clergy persons to work with Mr. Simplis over the years.

Naturally, the number most emphatically includes Fr. Juan Marentes, the current pastor. And just as he loved his Church, his church loved him. The affection of the people of St Andrew’s for Mr. Simplis was evident in the respect and almost ‘patriarchal’ status he was accorded in the church community.

He was beloved as well by his large family, having fathered an incredible seventeen children: four sons, and thirteen daughters. 

Mr. Simplis took great pride in the accomplishments of his progeny and would not hesitate to proclaim loud and long the success of his children and grandchildren. Living to the age of 92,  he was blessed to see unto the fourth generation!

As must be clear by now, Mr. Simplis was no ordinary man.  Everything he did was marked by his sense of manners, professionalism, decorum and courtliness. This came through even in the way he always answered the phone: no ordinary, anonymous “hello”; but a clear, simple and correct “Norman Simplis speaking!”

If gentlemanly, he was also genial and took extreme pleasure in amusing himself and his guests with funny and obscure riddles. He had an enquiring mind and a discursive personality, and loved to talk about many perhaps anytopic.

Always willing to be a mentor, Mr. Simplis was admired by many.  In his condolences to Mrs. Kim Barrow, Mr. Elias Awe recalled his friendship with Mr. Simplis and wrote: “I had the privilege of knowing your dad from the age of 15 while he was Inspector at the San Ignacio/Santa Elena Police Station. Ever since, I had a good relationship with him. I always regarded him as a paragon of rectitude and respect. I will always remember him as such.” 

This is how we will all remember him.

He loved to read his Holy Bible and research concepts that captured his attention; he authored several historical papers and was a lover of poetry.  Guests will recall that a visit would not end without Mr. Simplis preparing a bag or even a small box of produce for his visitor to take home and that the gift was always accompanied by a blessing for a safe journey and success in one’s endeavors.

So today, although we mourn the loss of a wonderful man and a father, who loved all his many children, we also give thanks for his life. Norman, during your sojourn on earth you blessed us with your warm and generous spirit.

We know that you will continue to look over us from your new place of residence in the bosom of the Lord.  Norman Gilbert Simplis will be greatly missed by his children, grandchildren, great grandchildren, relatives, church family, and friends. May he rest in peace!

-1 1 0 59 12/22/2011 06:00:00 62 0/0/0000 00:00:00 0 0 0/0/0000 00:00:00 12/22/2011 06:00:00 0/0/0000 00:00:00 show_title= link_titles= show_intro= show_section= link_section= show_category= link_category= show_vote= show_author= show_create_date= show_modify_date= show_pdf_icon= show_print_icon= show_email_icon= language= keyref= readmore= 1 0 4 0 331 robots= author= 4217 FFB Elections in Belize City ffb-elections-in-belize-city

(December 20, 2011)
Elections for the Belize District Football Association were held on Saturday, December 17th at 9:00 am at the CET Building in Belize City. The elections were carried out by the Electoral Committee. The National Sports Council was represented by Mr. Allan Sharp.
Elected to serve in the Belize District FA Executive Committee are the following individuals:
• Chairman, Floyd Jones,
• Vice-Chairman, Daniel Smith
 Members
 •  Andrew Lamb
  •  Sanjay Pitts
 •  Michelle Novelo
Elections for the Stann Creek Football Association were held on Saturday, December 17th at 4:00 pm at the Town Hall in Dangriga. The elections were carried out by the Electoral Committee. The National Sports Council was represented by Mr. Patrick Henry.
Elected to serve in the Stann Creek FA Executive Committee are the following individuals:
• Chairman, Kevin Flores
• Vice-Chairman, Denise Flores
 Members
 •  Hilberto Muschamp
    •  Dennis Serano
 •  Norman Castillo.

-1 1 0 59 12/22/2011 06:00:00 62 0/0/0000 00:00:00 0 0 0/0/0000 00:00:00 12/22/2011 06:00:00 0/0/0000 00:00:00 show_title= link_titles= show_intro= show_section= link_section= show_category= link_category= show_vote= show_author= show_create_date= show_modify_date= show_pdf_icon= show_print_icon= show_email_icon= language= keyref= readmore= 1 0 3 0 95 robots= author= 4218 Stann Creek District elects new football executive stann-creek-district-elects-new-football-executive

The Stann Creek Football Association held its Extraordinary Congress on Saturday December 17, 2011, at the Town Hall in Dangriga Town. The single item on the agenda was the elections of officers for the Stann Creek Football Association.

The Extraordinary Congress saw the participation of fourteen teams’ representatives that elected the new executive. The elections also had the participation of Leroy Romero, Vice-Chairman of the Electoral Committee; Herman Pastor Jr., member of the Electoral Committee; Anthony Norales, Justice of the Peace; and Patrick Henry, the representative of the National Sports Council.

At the end of the Extraordinary Congress, the following were elected as the new Executive of the Stann Creek Football Association: Chairman, Kevin Flores; Vice Chairman, Denise Flores; while the three Committee Members are Hilberto Muschamp, Dennis Serano and Norman Castillo.

The next set of elections will take place on December 28 at 6:00 pm for the League at the FFB Headquarters in Belmopan.

-1 1 0 59 12/22/2011 06:00:00 62 0/0/0000 00:00:00 0 0 0/0/0000 00:00:00 12/22/2011 06:00:00 0/0/0000 00:00:00 show_title= link_titles= show_intro= show_section= link_section= show_category= link_category= show_vote= show_author= show_create_date= show_modify_date= show_pdf_icon= show_print_icon= show_email_icon= language= keyref= readmore= 1 0 2 0 82 robots= author= 4219 Sadie Vernon Technical High School National Male Basketball Champions sadie-vernon-technical-high-school-national-male-basketball-champions

The National Secondary Schools Sports Association held its Annual National Basketball Championship on Friday December 16 and Saturday December 17, 2011, at the Angel Nuñez Auditorium at San Pedro High School.

On Saturday, in the male championship game, Sadie Vernon Technical High School defeated the host team and the northern region representative San Pedro High School by the score of 82-68 to repeat as National Basketball Champions.

The top scorers for Sadie Vernon Technical High School were Kashief Thomas with 27 points, 6 steals, 6 rebounds, and 7 assists;  Andrew Ortiz with 20 points, 13 rebounds, 2 assists; and 3 steals and Rodrick Williams with 15 points, 8 rebounds, and 2 steals. Meanwhile, the top scorers for San Pedro High School were Charles Richards with 21 points, 14 rebounds, and 2 steals; Jamel Ashton Jones with 18 points, 5 rebounds; and 3 steals, and Michael Guan with 17 points, 4 rebounds, 2 assists, and 3 steals.

In the consolation game for third place, Belmopan Comprehensive High School won over Stann Creek Ecumenical College by the score of 58-37. The top scorers for Belmopan Comprehensive were Akeem Watters with 18 points, 16 rebounds, 4 assists and 3 steals and Marlon Salazar with 11 points and 11 rebounds. For Stann Creek Ecumenical High, the top scorers were Quinton Bowen and Hyden Casimiro with 8 points each.

On Friday December 16, in the first game of the championship, Sadie Vernon Technical High School representing the central region defeated Stann Creek Ecumenical College representing the southern region by the score of 77-38. The top scorers for Sadie Vernon Technical were Andrew Ortiz with 20 points, and 15 rebounds; Kashief Thomas with 16 points, 6 assists and 6 steals; and Lincey Lopez with 9 points, 2 assists and 3 steals. Meanwhile, the top scorers for Stann Creek Ecumenical College were Brandon Castillo with 13 points, 2 rebounds, 2 assists and 3 steals and Frank Williams Jr. with 9 points and 19 rebounds.

In the second male game, San Pedro High School edged out Belmopan Comprehensive High School representing the western region by the score of 53-48. The top scorers for San Pedro High School were Michael Guan with 17 points, 2 rebounds, 5 assists; and 5 steals; Charles Richards with 13 points, 14 rebounds, 3 assists, and 3 steals; and Joel Ruiz with 11 points, and 2 rebounds. For Belmopan Comprehensive High School, the top scorers were Akeem Watters with 25 points, 13 rebounds, and 2 assists and Christopher Enriquez with 10 points.

At the end of the championship, Andrew Ortiz of Sadie Vernon Technical High School was named the Most Valuable Player with 40 points and 28 rebounds.

-1 1 0 41 12/22/2011 06:00:00 62 0/0/0000 00:00:00 0 0 0/0/0000 00:00:00 12/22/2011 06:00:00 0/0/0000 00:00:00 show_title= link_titles= show_intro= show_section= link_section= show_category= link_category= show_vote= show_author= show_create_date= show_modify_date= show_pdf_icon= show_print_icon= show_email_icon= language= keyref= readmore= 1 0 4 0 587 robots= author= 4220 St. Catherine Academy is National Basketball Champs again st-catherine-academy-is-national-basketball-champs-again

St. Catherine Academy is the National Secondary Schools Sports Association National Female Champions once again. St. Catherine Academy defeated Muffles College by the score of 30-13 to regain the national title on Saturday December 17, at the Angel Nuñez Auditorium at San Pedro High School. The top scorers for St. Catherine were Gilda Estrada with 15 points and Kursha Pollard with 7 points. Meanwhile, the top scorer for Muffles College was Déjá Cummings with 3 points.

In the consolation game for third place, Delille Academy defeated Sacred Heart College by the score of 36-15 to finish third in the championship. The top scorer for Delille Academy was Glenda Arana with 17 points, and for Sacred Heart College it was Jasmine Armstrong with 10 points.

On Friday December 16, in the first female game of the championship, St. Catherine Academy representing the central region defeated Delille Academy representing the Southern Region by the score of 28-15. The top scorer for St. Catherine Academy was Kursha Pollard with 13 points, and for Delille Academy it was Glenda Arana with 14 points.

In game two, Muffles College representing the northern region edged Sacred Heart College representing the western region by the score of 18-15. The top scorers for Muffles College were Selvani Leiva and Déjá Cummings with 6 points each. For Sacred Heart College, the top scorer was Jasmine Armstrong with 8 points.
At the end of the championship, Gilda Estrada of St. Catherine Academy was named the Most Valuable Player.

-1 1 0 41 12/22/2011 06:00:00 62 0/0/0000 00:00:00 0 0 0/0/0000 00:00:00 12/22/2011 06:00:00 0/0/0000 00:00:00 show_title= link_titles= show_intro= show_section= link_section= show_category= link_category= show_vote= show_author= show_create_date= show_modify_date= show_pdf_icon= show_print_icon= show_email_icon= language= keyref= readmore= 1 0 3 0 53 robots= author= 4221 Kulture Yabra is Over-40 football champions kulture-yabra-is-over-40-football-champions

SteveThe 2011 Over-40 Football Competition came to an end on Sunday December 18, at the MCC Grounds here in Belize City with the championship game played between the budding champs Kulture Yabra and the sub-champions Plaza United.

In the championship game, Kulture Yabra defeated Plaza United by the score of 4-0 to take this year’s title.

The first goal of the game for Kulture Yabra was scored by Steve “Gellis” Young to give his team an early lead. Kulture Yabra’s 2nd goal was scored by Norman “Tilliman” Pipersburgh.  The 3rd goal of the game was also scored by Pipersburgh who gave his team a 3-0 lead at the half.

The Kulture Yabra defence denied Plaza United’s offence during the entire championship game. Kulture Yabra’s final goal of the championship was scored by David “Manu” McCaulay.
We say congratulations to the champions and sub-champions of the Over-40-Competition as well as to the organisers.

-1 1 0 41 12/22/2011 06:00:00 62 0/0/0000 00:00:00 0 0 0/0/0000 00:00:00 12/22/2011 06:00:00 0/0/0000 00:00:00 show_title= link_titles= show_intro= show_section= link_section= show_category= link_category= show_vote= show_author= show_create_date= show_modify_date= show_pdf_icon= show_print_icon= show_email_icon= language= keyref= readmore= 1 0 2 0 56 robots= author= 4222 Softball loses one of its own softball-loses-one-of-its-own

AudreyThe Belize Softball Federation is mourning the passing of Audrey Lamb, former national softball team player, sister of veteran catcher Ruth Lamb, and the mother of Tyrone, Densmore and Ashton Edwards all players in this year’s Interoffice Competition.

Audrey started playing organised softball when she enrolled as a freshman at Nazarene High School in 1974. Audrey was a member of the Nazarene High School softball team and was a fundamental part of the team’s starting line-up when the school won the 1975 and 1976 high school competitions.

At the senior level, Audrey played for Lawrence “Pampo” Young’s Loyolans, Raymond Lashley’s Coca-Cola, Collet Gill’s Belikin and Greg Moguel’s Fanta before she retired from softball.

In 1979, Audrey joined the Coca Cola Softball Team and became the team’s second baseman, a position she played for all 9 years that she was a member of that organisation. In 1981, she was named to join the National Female Softball Team of Belize for the visit of the Panamanian National Team. A couple weeks later she was off to Obregon, Mexico, for the 1st Pan American Female Championship. This is the qualifier for the Pan-American Games. Team Belize placed fourth in the championship and qualified for the 9th Pan-American Games that was held in Caracas, Venezuela.

During the qualifying games in Obregon, Mexico, Audrey experienced her biggest thrill in international competition when she hit the home run that gave Belize the victory over the United States in 13 innings.

In 1982, she was again art of the National Team that participated in the 13th Central American and Caribbean Games that was held in Havana, Cuba. The team captured the silver medal and Audrey was a part of that celebrations.

Again in 1983, she was off to Caracas, Venezuela, for the 9th Pan-American Games where she was an instrumental part of the team in helping Belize to its second bronze medal at these games.

Audrey was part of the National Team in 1986 for the 15th Central American and Caribbean Games that were played in Santiago, Dominican Republic, and in 1987 for the 10th Pan-American Games that were staged in Indianapolis, Indiana, USA.

Lamb was an-above average hitter and she used to hit the ball to all fields with power and authority. She was an excellent middle infielder for her local club teams and the Belize Team.

-1 1 0 41 12/22/2011 06:00:00 62 0/0/0000 00:00:00 0 0 0/0/0000 00:00:00 12/22/2011 06:00:00 0/0/0000 00:00:00 show_title= link_titles= show_intro= show_section= link_section= show_category= link_category= show_vote= show_author= show_create_date= show_modify_date= show_pdf_icon= show_print_icon= show_email_icon= language= keyref= readmore= 1 0 1 0 100 robots= author= 4223 Prime Minister Hon Dean O. Barrow Christmas Message 2011 christmas-message-2011

The usual good wishes that my family and I offer all our countrymen and women every Christmas, are this year mixed in with the thanks we give for the solidarity and support we have received from Belizeans over the last month and a half. Ever since the nation learned of my wife's cancer affliction, people's prayers and intercession have been non-stop. This has served not just greatly to comfort us, but as a wonderful reminder of what Christmas is really about: individuals drawing closer to God and to each other in recognition of the supreme sacrifice of the Christ child, and what that has ever since meant for the ties of our common humanity.

My Christmas hope, then, is for the star that lights Belize and all the world at this time, to be extra bright. May it bring good tidings and peace to everyone; but especially to those that are sick and in need. And let each of us that is able, personally reach out to the poor and the less fortunate. Let us, with kind words and good deeds, ensure that no Belizean is without the spirit and the good things of the season. Let us spread cheer in every corner of our beloved country.

To all in this great land, then, a blessed Christmas and a prosperous 2012. 

-1 1 0 40 12/22/2011 06:00:00 62 12/22/2011 22:45:56 64 0 0/0/0000 00:00:00 12/22/2011 06:00:00 0/0/0000 00:00:00 show_title= link_titles= show_intro= show_section= link_section= show_category= link_category= show_vote= show_author= show_create_date= show_modify_date= show_pdf_icon= show_print_icon= show_email_icon= language= keyref= readmore= 2 0 2 0 85 robots= author= 4224 Primer Minisreo Hon Dean O. Barrow Mensaje Navideño 2011 primer-minisreo-mensaje-navideno-2011

Los buenos deseos que de costumbre mi familia y yo les ofrecemos a nuestros compatriotas cada Navidad, este año están mezclados con agradecimiento por la solidaridad y el apoyo que hemos recibido de Beliceños atravéz de las últimas seis semanas. Desde que la nación supo del padecimiento de cancer de mi esposa, las oraciones e intercesiones por parte del pueblo no han cesado. Esto ha servido grandemente no solo para consolarnos, sino también como un maravilloso recordatorio de lo que es Navidad en realidad: individuos acercándose más a Dios y uno al otro en reconocimiento del supremo sacrificio del niño Cristo, y de lo que eso ha significado desde entonces para los lazos de nuestra común humanidad.

Mi esperanza Navideña, entonces, es que la estrella que ilumina Belize y todo el mundo en este tiempo, que sea aún más resplandeciente.  Que traiga buenas nuevas y paz a todos; pero especialmente a aquellos que se encuentran enfermos y en necesidad.  Y que cada uno de nosotros que puede hacerlo, personalmente ayude a los pobres y los menos afortunados. Con palabras bondadosas y buenos hechos aseguremos que ningún Beliceño se halle sin el espíritu y las buenas cosas de la temporada. Seamos nosotros portadores de alegría en cada rincón de nuestro amado país.

A todos, entonces, en esta gran nación, Feliz Navidad y próspero 2012 (dos mil doce). 

-1 1 0 40 12/22/2011 06:00:00 62 12/22/2011 22:46:15 64 0 0/0/0000 00:00:00 12/22/2011 06:00:00 0/0/0000 00:00:00 show_title= link_titles= show_intro= show_section= link_section= show_category= link_category= show_vote= show_author= show_create_date= show_modify_date= show_pdf_icon= show_print_icon= show_email_icon= language= keyref= readmore= 2 0 1 0 86 robots= author= 4225 FREE 10 thousand homes free-10-thousand-homes

PropertiesIn 1998 the People’s United Party promised ten thousand homes that never materialized; in 2011 the Prime Minister Hon. Dean Barrow delivered over 10,000 homes to deserving home owners within three months, without having promised them.  Firstly ,the Prime Minister announced in his Independence Day address in September of 2011 the writing off  $62.6 million worth of mortgages to homeowners, who had mortgages with the Housing and Planning Department; an initiative that affected 9,200 mortgage holders, and in his New Year’s message, the Prime Minister announced the writing off of another 782  mortgages with the Social Security Board.

Well, over 10,000 homeowners are now in possession of their homes free of any mortgage, and totally  unencumbered. Fundamental to these initiatives was the primal objective to ease the financial burden on Belizeans, whether red or blue, yellow or any other colour.

It cannot be forgotten that those who will benefit the most are persons belonging to the People’s United Party simply because they were the only persons who could have qualified; given the partisan nature of the selection process, for a mortgage prior to 2008.  Most poignant still is the fact that even under those circumstances prospective homeowners were required to pay for a house and land that was front loaded with corruption so that the land, construction, and financing of the house were all done with a singularly corrupt motive in mind, a motive that was executed to the fullest; PUP corruption in full stride Ralph and Said, like the Japanese kamikaze,  carelessly careening round the curves of corruption.

Those who were unfortunate to have benefited from either a Housing and Planning Department mortgage, under the PUP,or a Social Security mortgage, were secure -  unbeknownst to them, in a securitization hustle.  Mortgages travelled from collector to collector as they were bundled up and sold off in the international markets.  As faith would have it, the only thing secured in securitization was that every new collector added on his legal and administrative fees so that mortgage holders saw their payments go up; while their poorly constructed houses on over priced lands descended into decay.

Eight miles on the Western Highway, Fresh Pond in Burrell Boom, Finca Solana in Corozal, developments in Santa Elena, San Ignacio and San Pedro, are just a few examples where corruption and abuse coalesced; where millions were spent.  Lands were acquired from favoured PUP’s at inflated prices, PUP unqualified contractors were hired who bought cheap material and hired cheaper labour still, so that by the time the house was complete, the government knew then as the UDP know now, that they would be selling houses with one hand, and taking it away with the other.   Anyone who reads a newspaper will know that week after week, the hundreds of foreclosed houses speaks to a nation and people under the pressure and strain of PUP corruption.     


The toilet paper flowed from Belize Investment Management Company, BIMCO, a subsidiary of Social Security Board, to L & J’s collection agency, a Dickie hustle, to St. James Building Society, and then Alliance Bank, a Glen hustle, to Government of Belize, and then back to Social Security Board. 


It was the United Democratic Party and the Hon. Prime Minister Hon. Dean Barrow decided to announce in his New Year’s message that the burden on the Belizean people must end.  There is no longer a promise of 10,000 houses, over 10,000 Belizeans now have their homes.

-1 6 0 54 1/5/2012 06:00:00 62 0/0/0000 00:00:00 0 0 0/0/0000 00:00:00 1/5/2012 06:00:00 0/0/0000 00:00:00 show_title= link_titles= show_intro= show_section= link_section= show_category= link_category= show_vote= show_author= show_create_date= show_modify_date= show_pdf_icon= show_print_icon= show_email_icon= language= keyref= readmore= 1 0 1 0 2575 robots= author= 4226 Gang truce still holding PM: 9-year-old was not shot by truce participants gang-truce-still-holding-pm-9-year-old-was-not-shot-by-truce-participants

PMThe New Year started with some troubling news in Belize City after a shooting incident at the Palm Island Nightclub resulted in two men being shot.The shooting took place at 4:00a.m. when 32- year-old Renan Briceno Jr. fired a nine-millimeter pistol during an altercation at the nightspot. As a result 19-year-old Dale Tillett was shot to the head and is listed in a critical condition and 25-year-old Brandon Tillett was grazed on the foot.


Half an hour after the shooting at the club, a home invasion took place at the home of Michelle Myvette on George Street. An armed man or men made their way into the house and indiscriminately opened fire inside the house. At the end of the spray of bullets, 9-year- old Aaron Michael Myvette Pope had been shot to the head. He later died. His 17-year-old sister Kadisha was grazed to the elbow.

Prime Minister Dean Barrow told the Guardian that the shooting incident may appear to have been gang related however indications from those who form part of the truce are that it is not. While the killing of young Pope is not believed to have been gang related it is thought to have been a retaliatory shooting for what went on at the club. The PM added that even though no one has been arrested for the killing of Pope, those doing the shooting are not part of the gang truce. He added, “None of the principals or the other players,who are part of work programs or part of the meetings, part of the constant dialogue, no such individual was responsible for the murder.”

The PM however, did say that those responsible for the murder are know underworld figures but are not part of the gang truce. He explained that, “It doesn’t mean that we are home free, but certainly those that are part of the truce including leaders have met to ensure that as far as possible we can contain any possibility of a spill over as a consequence of the murder of the child.” He concluded expressing hope that those involved with the truce will continue to their commitment to the truce. -1 6 0 53 1/5/2012 06:00:00 62 0/0/0000 00:00:00 0 0 0/0/0000 00:00:00 1/5/2012 06:00:00 0/0/0000 00:00:00 show_title= link_titles= show_intro= show_section= link_section= show_category= link_category= show_vote= show_author= show_create_date= show_modify_date= show_pdf_icon= show_print_icon= show_email_icon= language= keyref= readmore= 1 0 2 0 1168 robots= author= 4227 PM to Start Nation-wide Tour in Corozal Southeast pm-to-start-nation-wide-tour-in-corozal-southeast

The Prime Minister of Belize, Hon. Dean Oliver Barrow, is embarking on a nationwide tour that will start in Corozal on Sunday, January 8. He will arrive in the village of Chunox at 9 a.m., then travel to the village of Caledonia at 2 p.m. Both villages are in the Corozal Southeast constituency and residents of the area are encouraged to make their way out to hear directly from the Prime Minister about current and future government programs.

-1 6 0 53 1/5/2012 06:00:00 62 0/0/0000 00:00:00 0 0 0/0/0000 00:00:00 1/5/2012 06:00:00 0/0/0000 00:00:00 show_title= link_titles= show_intro= show_section= link_section= show_category= link_category= show_vote= show_author= show_create_date= show_modify_date= show_pdf_icon= show_print_icon= show_email_icon= language= keyref= readmore= 1 0 1 0 2132 robots= author= 4228 Tending Gender-Based Violence tending-gender-based-violence

 We end the old year to the ongoing tragedy of domestic violence.  Despite the best efforts of many to end this scourge, it continues to wreck the lives of countless families and leave a trail of misery that extends into the next generation.  Women lead lives of quiet desperation, trying to avoid any action that might provoke a violent response. They may be the object of the rage but they are not its cause and so their efforts are bound to fail.  Children grow up in fear, suppressing the rage and hatred they feel towards the violent adult and the helplessness and guilt they feel when they are unable to protect their mother.  The boys vow never to become like their father or stepfather but all too often the pattern is ingrained and they grow into the adult they hated.  The girls vow never to let a man treat them so badly but, never having learned to value themselves, often find themselves in abusive relationships.  This vicious cycle continues often turning murderous when women finally gather the courage to leave.  It cannot be beyond our ingenuity to find ways to break the cycle if sufficient numbers of men and women are determined to do so. What if every organized group in Belize decided to join forces to put an end to gender based violence in 2012?  If every church and religious organization, every political party and committee, every school and every service organization united in the cause would it be possible to break the cycle?  Think of the lives saved; the children who would experience a true childhood; and the money saved in emergency care and police deployment.

Gender-based violence is already against the law and the penalties for convictions are not inconsequential but catching perpetrators after the fact is already too late.  Many perpetrators commit suicide after their murderous acts indicating that they are beyond reason at this point.  We have to find ways to prevent the escalation of violence in the first place.  I’ll start the ball rolling by throwing out some ideas and hope that others will pick up the ball and run with it.  One of the most important ideas may be to change the way we treat perpetrators.  We can only begin to deal with the problem if perpetrators are turned in before they inflict serious injury or death.  The victim may be too scared to report the abuse but family and friends of abusive men often know what is going on.  However, they will not report their loved one to the authorities if they fear that he will be treated badly.  There has to be s system whereby when a report comes in of an abusive situation the accused perpetrator is evaluated by a professional to determine the extent of his rage.  He may be asked to report to a counselor on a regular basis or some other duty instead of facing charges.  At the same time, his victim has to be able to access counseling to determine what actions she wants to take and find support for her decisions.  If she decides to leave, typically one of the most dangerous times in the life of an abused woman, there has to be safety systems in place for her and the children.  At the same time, her male partner needs support to help him to take a non-violent path. All this will only be possible if we invest in highly trained professionals within the police and judicial system.  But while this carrot is offered to abusers, the stick must also be present for those who will not or cannot respond appropriately.  We cannot wait until an abuser breaks a restraining order with murder in his heart.  Someone must be able to invent a device that the abuser can be  mandated to wear that will sound an alarm whenever he comes within a predetermined distance from his former partner who wears corresponding half of the device.  These and other actions can only be initiated by the authorities but as individuals and groups we can lobby for change and determine to do our part by offering non-judgemental support to everyone entangled in an abusive situation.  We can report suspected abuse and offer a temporary safe space to victims, bearing in mind the need to avoid confrontation and keep everyone safe.

This is not a new problem and is part of a general acceptance of violence as a solution to problems but it is one that needs to be addressed in our time.  We have to think beyond victims and perpetrators and try novel ideas to determine which ones actually work to reduce violence and improve the lives of everyone involved.  Let 2012 be the year that we begin the process of taming the tiger of gender-based violence.

-1 10 0 56 1/5/2012 06:00:00 62 0/0/0000 00:00:00 0 0 0/0/0000 00:00:00 1/5/2012 06:00:00 0/0/0000 00:00:00 show_title= link_titles= show_intro= show_section= link_section= show_category= link_category= show_vote= show_author= show_create_date= show_modify_date= show_pdf_icon= show_print_icon= show_email_icon= language= keyref= readmore= 1 0 1 0 53 robots= author= 4229 Prime Minister Hon. Dean Barrow 2012 New Year's Message prime-minister-hon-dean-barrow-2012-new-years-message

No installment in any of the annual increments by which  we most reckon the passage of time, is ever completely without trials and tribulations. That is why as human beings, as societies, as nations, we always welcome the new year with expectation and excitement. It is a chance to recover from adversity in the preceding twelve months, to do better and be better. The ageless ritual of ringing out the old and ringing in the new, is thus emblematic of the eternal capacity for hope and renewal. And this, in turn, is part of God’s legacy to the Race; to all thinking, sentient creatures that believe in Him.

But while last year was, like all others, not without difficulties, they were small ones. Indeed, given the global situation; given the continuing fiscal, debt and joblessness problems of the US; and given the absolute crisis in which Europe continued to be engulfed, economically our country did well. And a look at the numbers will serve to confirm what, in all the circumstances, is a performance for which we must give thanks.

The Statistical Institute of Belize reports that for the first nine months of the year, our economy grew by 2.7% as compared to 1.8% for the same period in 2010. Last quarter growth is traditionally most robust, so that we are well on track to exceed the overall 3% GDP increase for 2011 that I had predicted on Independence Day. This is a significant jump and will be almost one full percentage point above the 2.4% growth recorded for the previous year.

When we look at the particular sectors that are most responsible for this picture of economic advance, the panorama is even more encouraging. Up to September it was the Wholesale and Retail Trade Sector that was one of the leaders, showing a 7.7% increase. And the Corozal Free Zone alone was responsible for a business rebound of 23% in improved year-on-year sales. Over the three quarters Hotels and Restaurants grew by 2.1% as a consequence of a 3.3% increase in overnight tourists; and Transport and Communications went up by 2.5%. Construction was also 7.4% better. But it was Fishing that led all comers with a 14.5% hike. And while overall sugar production fell, ratios, quality and prices improved so that we are now poised for an outstanding new season. Finally, Inflation remained low at just over 2%.

It is on the basis of all this that I can say that we were blessed in 2011. We easily outpaced 2010, and the story is even more remarkable if we go back to 2009. Then, we all remember, was when there was actual contraction; when the fallout from the world recession threatened to swamp us completely.

The economic success of 2011 meant that increases in export earnings, including in particular from crude oil, enabled Government to consummate a great leap forward in cementing its social agenda. Job-creating infrastructure projects were implemented; educational and economic second chance opportunities were expanded; and the wind was fully in the sails of our signature home improvement, food pantry and cash transfer programs.

Our democracy was also in fine flower. We maintained our commitment to accessibility, transparency and accountability; and we continued our forward march to true nationalism by way of the Constitutional enshrinement of public ownership of our essential utilities.

Perhaps most noteworthy of all, we succeeded-certainly since September when we forged the Belize City gang truce-in decelerating the incidence of senseless murders in this country. The significant reduction in the homicide rate for the last four months of 2011 as compared to 2010, is great progress. And it comes at just the right point, when too many were beginning to feel that there could be no rescue from the abyss.

But the real purpose of this Message, is to look ahead; to assure one and all that the inherent promise and opportunity of the New Year will not be forgone. Efforts will be strengthened, commitments will be broadened, successes will be deepened.

In 2012, as one example, the infrastructure drive-and the jobs it brings-will scale new heights. The Jalacte Road in the South, the Blue Creek one in the North, the Macal River Crossing in the West, the comprehensive Belize City drainage and street works, will all be hitting full stride. The new Marion Jones stadium will be coming out of the ground, the new Civic Center will be rising from the rubble. The contract for the design and build component of the Solid Waste Management Project, has also been signed; and it will see 14 million dollars spent between January and July in Caye Caulker, San Pedro, San Ignacio and Belize City. And their delayed rehabilitation and beautification drive for the District Towns will now start by April, the World Bank assures us.

A countrywide money contribution for working mothers will join the apprenticeship, food subsidy and BOOST programs. And the drop-in centers in distressed Belize City neighbourhoods will help with community development, social recovery and violence prevention.

Millions of dollars will continue to fund Government’s home improvement and home repairs across the nation; and every single registered surveyor in this country has now been contracted to work on the subdivision of the 4,709 acres identified by the Ministry of Lands for the allocation of building lots to first time landowners.

Our outreach to the poor and the middle class continues. They, and indeed all Belizeans, will be helped by the lower electricity rates that I promised in September, and which are now a certainty. BEL, owned at last by Government and people, has already accepted, by way of its submissions to the Public Utilities Commission, that rates must come down. And the PUC may well reduce even more what has been proposed by BEL. The final decision will be on January 31, and the new, lower rates should under the current law take effect a few months thereafter. But we are a Government in a hurry to do good things. And the ease to the consumer, the ease in the cost of living, the ease to business and industry and agriculture, can’t wait. Thus Government will amend the law to implement from the very next day, February 1, 2012, this historic decrease in what Belizeans pay for electricity.

But there is more that we offer by way of festal cheer. Unlike 2012, our vision of uplift and opportunity and egalitarianism is not newborn. But the underlining of fresh beginnings that always takes place on January 1, provides a proper opportunity for us to reassert our creed: that this Government’s flame of social justice will never dim; that it will burn even brighter in the next twelve months. And our preoccupation with those at the margins, with those of fixed incomes, low incomes and no incomes, has caused us to hit on yet another idea for new year relief and assistance. Accordingly, I announce today that Government will purchase all mortgages of 50 thousand dollars and under, owned by the Belize Social Security Board. These number 780 and have a total aggregate value of 17 million dollars. Government will thereafter write off these mortgages, forgiving the householders all of their loan obligations, and putting that money at their disposal to spend on the economy and generate more activity.

The notion of helping not just individuals but businesses in this way, brings me to the last point I wish to make. In all that we do, Government cannot forget the private sector. There is need for an equal partnership, and we made the right start late in 2011. This must be consolidated in the year ahead. Government is therefore, among other things, appointing a Business Development Facilitator in the Office of the Prime Minister to help oversee the new relationship.

I close by referring once again to the rebirth of optimism that is the special province of New Year celebrations. All across the globe, this is an occasion for the rekindling of inspiration. It is the annual re-start of the quest for human progress, of the alchemist mission to turn even brass into gold. In the case of Belize, our resolution is to re-dedicate and re-consecrate the crusade by which we build a shining, fair and just country. One that will be the envy of, and model for, the region and the world.

Happy New Year everyone, and God bless Belize.   

-1 1 0 40 1/5/2012 06:00:00 62 1/5/2012 22:33:14 64 0 0/0/0000 00:00:00 1/5/2012 06:00:00 0/0/0000 00:00:00 show_title= link_titles= show_intro= show_section= link_section= show_category= link_category= show_vote= show_author= show_create_date= show_modify_date= show_pdf_icon= show_print_icon= show_email_icon= language= keyref= readmore= 2 0 11 0 1531 robots= author= 4230 Mensaje de Año Nuevo 2012 del Primer Ministro Hon. Dean O. Barrow mensaje-de-ano-nuevo-2012-del-primer-ministro-hon-dean-o-barrow-

Ningún saldo en ninguno de los incrementos anuales por medio el cual medimos el pasar del tiempo, está realmente completo sin sufrimientos y tribulaciones.  Es por ello que como seres humanos, sociedades, y naciones, siempre damos la bienvenida al año nuevo con expectativas y alegría. Es una oportunidad para recuperarse de la adversidad de los doce meses anteriores, para obrar mejor y ser mejor. El eterno ritual de despedir el viejo y dar la bienvenida al nuevo, es por lo tanto emblemático de la eterna capacidad de esperanza y renovación. Y esto, a cambio, es parte del legado de Dios a la raza humana; a todas las criaturas racionales que creen en El.  

Aunque el año pasado, como todos, no estuvo sin dificultades, estas fueron pequeñas. De hecho, en vista de la situación global; dado los continuos problemas fiscales, de deudas y desempleo de los Estados Unidos; dada la crisis absoluta en la que Europa se ve sumida; nuestro país hizo bien económicamente. Y un vistazo a los números sirve para confirmar que, en todas las circunstancias, hay un logro del cual agradecidos estamos.

El Instituto de Estadísticas de Belice, informa que los primeros nueve meses del año, nuestra economía creció  un dos punto siete por ciento (2.7%), comparado con el uno punto ocho por ciento (1.8%) para el mismo período en el dos mil diez. El crecimiento en el último trimestre del año es tradicionalmente el más robusto, así que estamos bien encaminados a, tal y como lo predije en el Día de la Independencia, exceder el tres por ciento (3%) del producto interno nacional en el dos mil once. Esto es un gran logro, y estará casi un punto porcentual por encima del crecimiento de dos punto cuatro por ciento (2.4%) del año pasado.

Cuando examinamos los sectores particulares que son los más responsables por este panorama de avance económico, el futuro es aún más prometedor.  Hasta septiembre fue el Sector Comercial de mayoreo y menudeo que llevaba la delantera, registrando un aumento del siete punto siete por ciento (7.7%). Tan solo la Zona Libre de Corozal fue responsable por una recuperación comercial de veinte y tres por ciento (23%), en ventas anuales.  A lo largo de los tres trimestres, Hoteles  y Restaurantes crecieron un dos punto uno por ciento (2.1%), como resultado del  aumento de las llegadas turísticas en un tres punto tres por ciento (3.3%); Transporte y Comunicaciones creció un dos punto cinco por ciento (2.5%). La construcción también tuvo un siete punto cuatro por ciento de mejoría (7.4%). Pero fue la industria de la Pesca que realmente estuvo a la cabeza con un aumento del catorce punto cinco por ciento(14.5%). Y, mientras la producción de azúcar cayó en general, las proporciones, la calidad y los precios mejoraron, proveyendo una  posición ideal para una exitosa y abundante zafra. Finalmente, la inflación permaneció baja, solo con dos puntos porcentuales.

Es en  base a todo lo antedicho que puedo acertar que fuimos bendecidos en el dos mil once. Fácilmente sobrepasamos al dos mil diez y, si se compara con el dos mil nueve, el logro es aun más notable, ya que, recordemos, en ese año hubo una contracción y fue cuando las olas de la recesión mundial amenazaban con inundarnos por completo.

El éxito económico del dos mil once se debe a  que los aumentos en entradas por exportación, incluyendo en particular las provenientes del petróleo, hicieron posible que el Gobierno diera un gigantesco paso hacia la consolidación de su agenda social. Fueron implementados proyectos de infra-estructura para crear empleos; fueron expandidas las oportunidades educativas y económicas para aquellos necesitados de una segunda  oportunidad; y con el viento en popa, a pasos agigantados avanzamos con los préstamos y concesiones para las mejoras de viviendas, las cestas básicas para las personas de bajos ingresos, y los programas  de transferencia monetaria también para los más necesitados.

La flor de nuestra democracia también retoño.  Mantuvimos nuestro compromiso de ser un gobierno accesible, transparente y responsable; y continuamos nuestra marcha hacia el verdadero nacionalismo mediante la estipulación constitucional de ser dueños de los servicios esenciales.

Quizá  lo más notable de todo, es que desde septiembre, cuando forjamos un cese de hostilidades entre las pandillas de la ciudad de Belice, hemos tenido éxito en reducir la incidencia de asesinatos en este país. La significativa reducción en la tasa de homicidios para los últimos cuatro meses del dos mil once, comparados con el dos mil diez, representa un gran logro.  Y llega en el punto justo y preciso, cuando muchos comenzaban a sentir que no habría rescate de tal abismo.
Pero el verdadero propósito de este Mensaje, es mirar hacia adelante; asegurar a todos que la promesa inherente y la oportunidad del Año Nuevo es una verdadera realidad. Los esfuerzos se redoblarán, los compromisos se expandirán, y los logros serán más intensos.

En el dos mil doce, por ejemplo, el empuje en las infra-estructuras- y los empleos que conlleva- alcanzará nuevas metas. En el sur, la carretera a Jalacté, en el norte, la carretera de Blue Creek, en el oeste, el Cruce del Rio Macal, en la ciudad de Belice, los proyectos  de drenaje y de calles; todos estarán en plena acción. El nuevo estadio de Marion Jones ya saldrá de la fase de fundación, y el Nuevo Centro Cívico saldrá de las ruinas. Se ha firmado el contrato para el diseño y la construcción del ‘Proyecto de Manejo de Desperdicios Sólidos’; y se invertirán 14 (catorce) millones de dólares entre enero y julio en Caye Caulker, San Pedro, San Ignacio y Ciudad Belice. El Banco Mundial nos asegura que, el ya demorado proyecto de rehabilitación y embellecimiento para los municipios en los distritos, comenzará en abril.

Una contribución monetaria para las madres trabajadoras, a nivel nacional, se unirá a los programas de aprendices, la cesta básica, y BOOST. Y los centros de ayuda para  los vecindarios necesitados de la ciudad de Belice asistirán con el desarrollo comunitario, recuperación social, y la prevención de violencia.

Millones de dólares continuarán financiando las mejoras y reparaciones de viviendas en todo el país; y cada topógrafo registrado en este país ha sido contratado para trabajar en la sub -división de cuatro mil setecientos nueve acres identificados por el Ministerio de Terrenos para ser asignados como lotes de viviendas para aquellos que no tienen ni han sido dueños.

Nuestra asistencia hacia los pobres y los de clase media continúa. Ellos, de hecho todos los Beliceños, serán asistidos por la reducción en los precios de electricidad que prometí en Septiembre y que ahora se hace realidad. BEL, al fin del pueblo y gobierno, ya ha aceptado, a través de sus gestas a la Comisión de Utilidades Públicas, que los precios de la electricidad tienen que reducirse. Y la Comisión pueda que también reduzca aún más lo que habría propuesto BEL. La decisión final será el 31 de enero, y las nuevas tarifas reducidas deben, bajo la ley actual, tomar efecto unos cuantos meses después. Pero somos un gobierno que estamos apurados en hacer cosas buenas. Y el alivio al consumidor, la reducción en el costo de la vida, el alivio a los comercios, y la industria y la agricultura, no pueden esperar. Por lo tanto, el Gobierno enmendará la ley para implementar desde el mismo día siguiente, el primero de Febrero, dos mil doce, esta histórica reducción en lo que los Beliceños pagan por electricidad.

Pero todavía hay más que estamos ofreciendo para alegrar esta temporada.  Al contrario del dos mil doce, nuestra visión de adelanto, oportunidad e igualdad no es algo nuevo. Pero los frescos comienzos que siempre toman lugar el primero de enero, proveen una apropiada oportunidad para que enfaticemos nuestro credo: que la llama de justicia social de este gobierno nunca se apagará; que arderá aún más en los próximos doce meses. Y nuestra preocupación por los marginados, por aquellos con sueldos fijos, bajos ingresos o sin ingresos, ha causado que tengamos otra nueva idea para el alivio y asistencia de año nuevo. Por lo tanto, hoy anuncio que el Gobierno comprará todas las hipotecas de cincuenta mil dólares y menos, del Seguro Social de Belice. Estas llegan a un total de setecientas ochenta y cuentan con un total de valor agregado de diez y siete millones de dólares. Poco después el Gobierno anulará estas hipotecas, cancelando todas las obligaciones de préstamo de las cabezas de familia y dejando ese dinero a su disposición para invertirlo en la economía y generar más actividad.

La intención de ayudar no solo a individuos sino a los comercios en esta forma, me trae al último punto que deseo hacer. En todo lo que hacemos, el Gobierno no se puede olvidar del sector privado. Se necesita una participación equitativa, e hicimos un buen comienzo al final del dos mil once. Esto debe consolidarse en este año venidero. Por lo tanto, el gobierno entre otras cosas, está nombrando un Facilitador de Desarrollo Comercial en la Oficina del Primer Ministro para supervisar dicha nueva relación.

Finalizo haciendo referencia una vez más al renacimiento del optimismo que es la provincia especial de las celebraciones de año nuevo. A través del mundo, esta es una ocasión para re-encender la inspiración. Es el re-inicio anual de la búsqueda del progreso humano, de la misión alquimista de convertir hasta el cobre en oro. En el caso de Belice, nuestra resolución es re-dedicar y re-consagrar la cruzada por el cual construimos una nación brillante, justa y equitativa. Una que será la envidia de y el modelo para región y el mundo.

Feliz año Nuevo a todos, y que Dios bendiga a Belice.

-2 1 0 40 1/5/2012 06:00:00 62 0/0/0000 00:00:00 0 0 0/0/0000 00:00:00 1/5/2012 06:00:00 0/0/0000 00:00:00 show_title= link_titles= show_intro= show_section= link_section= show_category= link_category= show_vote= show_author= show_create_date= show_modify_date= show_pdf_icon= show_print_icon= show_email_icon= language= keyref= readmore= 1 0 0 0 14 robots= author= 4231 Queen’s New Year’s Honors queens-new-years-honors

AttorneyBelmopan Friday 30th December 2011
In a News Release from Belize House in Belmopan, the Office of the Governor-General announces that Her Majesty the Queen has been graciously pleased to make the following appointments to the Most Excellent Order Of The British Empire on the occasion of New Year Honours 2012:


Order of the British Empire CBE To be Ordinary Commander of the Civil Division of the said Most Excellent Order of the British Empire: The Honourable Bernard Quentin Augustus Pitts, for services to the Law and Public Service.

To be Ordinary Members of the Civil Division of the Said Most Excellent Order of the British Empire: Anne Gillett-Elrington MD, PhD. for services to the Belizean Diaspora and Medicine Louise Bridget Lewis, for services to Education and Community Development His Worship, Simeon Lopez, JP for services to Education and Public Service.  Ludwig Lightburn for services to Sports and the Community. And Enelda Regina Rosado for services to Education and Community Development.
The date for the presentation of awards will be announced later. -1 1 0 40 1/5/2012 06:00:00 62 0/0/0000 00:00:00 0 0 0/0/0000 00:00:00 1/5/2012 06:00:00 0/0/0000 00:00:00 show_title= link_titles= show_intro= show_section= link_section= show_category= link_category= show_vote= show_author= show_create_date= show_modify_date= show_pdf_icon= show_print_icon= show_email_icon= language= keyref= readmore= 1 0 10 0 1200 robots= author= 4232 Fuming Dream Team at PUP headquarters fuming-dream-team-at-pup-headquarters

MyrtleA few weeks ago there was a major shakeup at the PUP headquarters but the more things change the more they stay the same. The Guardian is not in the business of spilling shush, but laawd this one is just too good to go without reporting.


The new Sec. Gen. at the PUP headquarters, in typical authoritarian-almost dictatorial- fashion called a staff meeting on Wednesday and put everyone in their place. She was concerned that information about their activity, which really is insignificant, was making its way to the UDP. Well, the subject on this day was that 18,500 dollars worth of office equipment, which was purchased for her arrival, was really a pittance to what she is used to spending. She said “we have handled more money that under the PUP and whoever is leaking information will not be tolerated.”

Poor Miguel Alpuche cowed in his seat; he was the subject of Myrtle’s ire.  In fact, there is reason for him to be targeted because he was once the deputy secretary general and is now reduced to opening and closing the office at the headquarters. He’s now really a glorified messenger who has an office.

Speaking about that office, the National Women’s Group held a meeting on Wednesday at the Grand Old Party’s headquarters (upstairs) when they were simply broomed aside, or should we say pushed into Alpuche’s office to conclude the meeting. (Carla should not be treated this way; she is the president of the Women’s group of the PUP)

And a little about Carla, she’s gone from star gyal to yesterday’s news and has been asked to look for an office downstairs. She received an email by Shoman which was too much. Vaughn and Julius could have protected her but they simply gave her the cold shoulder, or maybe it’s the cold stare. Either way, she’s gone from the top of the pyramid to the bottom of the stairs or is that under the stairs.

And talking about stairs, Myrtle, Francis and others have climbed them so well. The PUP has been unable to pay bills like electricity, and Social Security in the past but it seems that they are quite able to pay for new Prados for the higher ups in the party. Myrtle has scoffed at this and explained to the staff that the way they are spending the PUP money is nobody’s business.

And if Myrtle is wondering who is telling us these things… there is a fly on the wall!

-1 1 0 40 1/5/2012 06:00:00 62 0/0/0000 00:00:00 0 0 0/0/0000 00:00:00 1/5/2012 06:00:00 0/0/0000 00:00:00 show_title= link_titles= show_intro= show_section= link_section= show_category= link_category= show_vote= show_author= show_create_date= show_modify_date= show_pdf_icon= show_print_icon= show_email_icon= language= keyref= readmore= 1 0 9 0 1273 robots= author= 4233 New hope at Magazine Road Skills Training Center new-hope-at-magazine-road-skills-training-center

InsideOn Wednesday, 4 January, the Ministry of Education and Youth held its first student orientation at the Magazine Road Skills Training Center. It is a great accomplishment for the United Democratic Party Government and in particular for the Minister of Education and Youth, Hon. Patrick Faber.

Minister Faber gave the keynote address at the orientation. He reminded the youths present, some who may not be old enough to remember, that the compound was the home of the old Venus Bus Terminal. He said, “Many journeys began and ended here.” He reminisced on the state of disrepair and deterioration that the facility was in when government recovered the compound after a failed attempt by the previous administration to monopolize the transport industry. After looking at the impressive structure and seeing the full extent of the refurbishment, he said, “What a long way we have come in restoring this facility. We have done this so that many more Belizean journeys can begin and destinations reached here.” Faber then encouraged the youths to start their own journey to prosperity by taking full advantage at the opportunity being offered. The center is intended to provide a second chance for disenfranchised youths by equipping them with practical and life skills.

The center has five core objectives. One is to increase the number of people with employable skills. There are too many cases where individuals desperately need jobs but have no skills to show. Another objective is to improve literacy rate of program participants. The program should reduce the number of youth engaged in risky behaviour and promote the development of positive attitudes, values, and behaviour among participants. Parents are included as well. Programs will be established to assist parents in changing dysfunctional patterns of family interaction and communication. Finally, the center aims to promote collaboration among ministries, NGO’s, the business community and other stakeholders in addressing unemployment and crime.

Jeffery Locke, Chief  Executive Officer of the Belize Electricity Limited, was the Special Guest Speaker at the orientation. He shared his story with the youths. He explained that he was born and raised on the Southside of Belize City. He attended St. John’s Primary School then St. Michael’s College. He had to make several choices in life, whether to focus on school or clubs; sports or drugs and sometimes work or play. He always tried to make the right decision. Locke’s first job was selling newspapers. He later went to work at B.E.L. as an apprentice technician. While his friends were driving pass to go play ball, he was riding to work. Thirty years later, Locke is the C.E.O. of B.E.L. Some of his friends, who had the same opportunities as him, are either in prison, drug addicts or dead. Locke said he was extremely disappointed when the apprenticeship program introduced by the UDP was canceled. He said that allowed the streets apprenticeship program to win the battle for youths. Instead of teaching development skills, that program teaches how to rob and kill. He urged the youths present to make good choices in life and quoted Winston Churchill in saying, “Success is never final and failure is never fatal.”

The centre is to be demand-driven and dynamic in nature. It will develop its curricula based on the needs of industry and the community. The targeted participants are youths primarily between that age of 14 and 18. The initial programs being offered are Hospitality (Front Desk), Barbering,  Art & Craft (Sewing) and IT. There are 99 participants already registered: 23 for Hospitality, 14 for Art & Craft, 16 for barbering and 46 for IT. Minister Faber said that his goal is to see more than 300 youths in the program. He said, “An evening program will be opened as well because we don’t have time to waste.” The first day of classes is on Monday, January 9. Late registration runs until the end of January and the program will last six months.

-1 1 0 40 1/5/2012 06:00:00 64 Shane D. Williams 0/0/0000 00:00:00 0 0 0/0/0000 00:00:00 1/5/2012 06:00:00 0/0/0000 00:00:00 show_title= link_titles= show_intro= show_section= link_section= show_category= link_category= show_vote= show_author= show_create_date= show_modify_date= show_pdf_icon= show_print_icon= show_email_icon= language= keyref= readmore= 1 0 8 0 1245 robots= author= 4234 Keep your head low keep-your-head-low

The cruel and mindless murder of young Aaron Pope has really darkened the spirits of many Belizeans for the New Year. The circumstances surrounding his death are so sad, and I join other Belizeans in empathizing with the grieving mom, and indeed the entire family, in their time of deep sorrow. There is no excuse, no rationale, for something like this to have developed, which tells us how pitiless our society has become.

I am certainly not assigning individual blame here, but as citizens we seem contented in charging the police and government for allowing these atrocities to occur, while not appreciating that victims and perpetuators alike are our sons and daughters. Somewhere along the path of nationhood, we veered in the wrong direction, and turned a blind eye at what our kids were doing. But I guess you have heard these outbursts from many quarters before, especially from the late Smokey Joe, and will now probably stifle a yawn at my droning.  So let me just begin with my narrative for this week.

2011 was an interesting year, filled with fascinating events in all categories: political, criminal, religious, nationalistic, and the passing of our national hero. As I reviewed the 2011 collage of snapshots from the various media outlets, I was impressed at the professionalism displayed in treating the viewers to the vivid reminders of last year. And as usual, I have my two bits to enter into this collection as well, which some of the guys missed out in their presentations. My contributions are more on the comical edge, though, so don’t expect any big issues.

The first one deals with the man from the West, Señor Silva, who professes to know everything about anything. He had even begun arrogating to himself the title of chief local historian, and was seriously looking at a political comeback; a blast from the past, so to speak. His unremitting calls to the talk shows would frustrate listeners, who generally prefer to listen to diverse opinions instead of the same views from the same voice over and over.

The time came when the man got his desire, and Belizeans really wanted to hear him speak on a certain issue for as long as he wanted. Mind you, we actually got a little juicy segment, an appetizer so to speak, but then, dead silence. Gone is the Silva we knew; he quit on us abruptly. We really want to know more as to the reason why he, against the Premier’s advice, went to beg the Guatemalan president for scholarships. To many Belizeans out here, to compromise our country, our pride, our nationality for 200 scholarships was really a shameful act, and is enough reason for any person, who did such an act, to have kept a low profile for as many decades as possible. But now we all know, Señor Silva, and trust you not one bit.

The other incident occurred a wee bit into the New Year, but I will still assign it to 2011 for the purposes of this essay. There is a talk show host here in OW who daily rattles the nerves of many UDP supporters. This demagogue has mastered the art of twisting the facts out of every issue, and easily turns it into a political negative for the government. He is also known to be quick-wristed and can instantly cut off a phone call that dares to rebut any of his comments. He too, however, has a dark past.

Tuesday morning early, a lady called his show, and began showering him with niceties, which got him purring. He dropped his guard and then the lady dropped him. The lady caller baited him to admit that he and his family spent a pleasant Christmas and New Year, and then she suddenly and quickly told him that the family of the teen he had murdered did not have the opportunity to enjoy those same blessings with their family member.
The lesson here on both occasions in my discourse is that if you have committed something bad in the past, which you don’t want people to remember, keep your head low! Remember, people may forgive you, but they will never forget, especially if you are messing with their political party. Anyway, belated Happy New Year to all, including the two gents above.

-1 1 0 40 1/5/2012 06:00:00 64 Jamil Matar 0/0/0000 00:00:00 0 0 0/0/0000 00:00:00 1/5/2012 06:00:00 0/0/0000 00:00:00 show_title= link_titles= show_intro= show_section= link_section= show_category= link_category= show_vote= show_author= show_create_date= show_modify_date= show_pdf_icon= show_print_icon= show_email_icon= language= keyref= readmore= 1 0 7 0 1143 robots= author= 4235 Simple Strimple and his play-play poll simple-strimple-and-his-play-play-poll

GlennAt the Guardian newspaper, we remember a fellow by the name of Joe Iyo. He was famously commissioned by the PUP in 2007 to run a poll, which told them that the PUP would win a significant victory at the polls in 2008.  Sadly, for the PUP, his poll was so inaccurate that it is no longer funny! That poll predicted that Michael Finnegan was in electoral trouble.  History has definitely proved that assertion and in fact the entire poll wrong.


Well, it seems that Glenn Tillett, thorough his “Independent” newspaper has been able to resurrect Iyo, oops… it is not Iyo, it is a white man, by the name of Greg Strimple. Strimple apparently did a poll in Belize, which is saying that John Briceno (a known numb-skull, who had resigned before the poll took place) had greater approval ratings that the Hon. Dean Barrow. We can’t laugh at this one cause there is nothing funny about this. The poll’s assertions may be classified as a crime.

It is clear from the questions in the poll that most of them were directed at the 9th amendment, nationalization and utilities. We can see the imprint of Ashcroft’s invisible hand all over this one. It reminds us of a poll conducted by Channel 5, which had no basis in fact and claiming that the people of Belize were against nationalization. The claim of the poll is that it was a face-to-face one. Well, we don’t know much but we are uncertain how anyone could have answered any of the questions that were asked.

Looking at Channel 7’s newscast, any fool could have determined that Strimple and Tillett need to start anew, start fresh, with credible information. When you make up things, at least they need to be credible… please Glenn. And if you are worrying that Joe, Juliet and Alfonso will talk about this, hell yes! This needs to be talked about!

The dark ages are done and over with. There are more high school students, sixth formers and university voters than there have ever been in this country. You think that any soul in this country really believes your little poll. Wheel and come again. 

-1 1 0 40 1/5/2012 06:00:00 62 0/0/0000 00:00:00 0 0 0/0/0000 00:00:00 1/5/2012 06:00:00 0/0/0000 00:00:00 show_title= link_titles= show_intro= show_section= link_section= show_category= link_category= show_vote= show_author= show_create_date= show_modify_date= show_pdf_icon= show_print_icon= show_email_icon= language= keyref= readmore= 1 0 6 0 1006 robots= author= 4236 Early Elections… early-elections

PMPrime Minister of Belize Hon. Dean Barrow, in speaking with Channel 7 News, explained that, “in politics any number could play.” He was referring specifically to the fact that there are those with the opinion that he would be calling early General elections. He maintained as he has always done regarding this topic, that the party would first go through the municipal elections first before the Generals is called. PM Barrow stated that the General may be called a few months after the municipals but he said that all options remain opened.


The statement was prefaed by questions on whether the results of the resounding defeat of the Jamaica Labour Party by the People’s National Party had him concerned on calling early elections. He noted that unlike Jamaica, Belize is not suffering economically as Jamaica was. In fact, Belize will be experiencing a 3 percent growth in the economy, this is in stark contrast to other Caribbean countries.

PM Barrow pointed out that if the UDP were to believe that it would lose if an election was to be called early, there would be nothing to gain if the party were to hold on to office for a few months longer. He stated that the UDP government is not in any hustling mode, and it does not want to make off with the resources of the country. He is of the opinion that any government should face the people and not be afraid of the consequences especially, “if your conscience is clear, if you are a respector of the democratic process and if you feel that you have done a sufficiently creditable job to entitle you to a new mandate.” -1 1 0 40 1/5/2012 06:00:00 62 0/0/0000 00:00:00 0 0 0/0/0000 00:00:00 1/5/2012 06:00:00 0/0/0000 00:00:00 show_title= link_titles= show_intro= show_section= link_section= show_category= link_category= show_vote= show_author= show_create_date= show_modify_date= show_pdf_icon= show_print_icon= show_email_icon= language= keyref= readmore= 1 0 5 0 1478 robots= author= 4237 Brace for BEL rate reductions brace-for-bel-rate-reductions

BelThe Belize Electricity Limited has applied to the Public Utilities Commission for a 3.4% rate reduction for consumers. It is an unprecedented move by a utility company to ask for a rate reduction but under a nationalized utility it was expected. But while BEL is asking for 3.4%, the ultimate decision of how much easement the consumers will get rests in the hands of the Public Utilities Commission.


Speaking to Prime Minister Dean Barrow, he explained that by Thursday January 12th, a preliminary decision would have been arrived at by the PUC. This will give way for the government to go to the National Assembly on Friday January 13th to announce a rate reduction for consumers. The exact amount that will be announced is not known and the Prime Minister explained that it is definitely going to be a reduction since BEL has set the stage for such. He added that he is hopeful that the regulator (PUC) may indicate that the reduction should be more than 3.4%. If that is the case the government, which holds majority shareholding in BEL, would be inclined to go with it. No matter what the case is, electricity rates are bound to go down.

-1 1 0 40 1/5/2012 06:00:00 62 0/0/0000 00:00:00 0 0 0/0/0000 00:00:00 1/5/2012 06:00:00 0/0/0000 00:00:00 show_title= link_titles= show_intro= show_section= link_section= show_category= link_category= show_vote= show_author= show_create_date= show_modify_date= show_pdf_icon= show_print_icon= show_email_icon= language= keyref= readmore= 1 0 4 0 875 robots= author= 4238 APOLOGY TO HON. FRANCIS FONSECA apology-to-hon-francis-fonseca

A copy of an image appeared on Page 9 of the Guardian Newspaper dated 25 December, 2011.  The image was an insert in an Article entitled “Top Ten Reasons why Francis Fonseca wants out of Freetown”.  The image depicts Honorable Francis Fonseca and makes the statement: “We don’t want another funds-taker”. The Guardian Newspaper takes this opportunity to retract any claim or suggestion that Honorable Fonseca is or was involved in any thievery or misconduct or that he took public funds and we express our regret and apology for any embarrassment that the image caused him.

-1 1 0 40 1/5/2012 06:00:00 62 0/0/0000 00:00:00 0 0 0/0/0000 00:00:00 1/5/2012 06:00:00 0/0/0000 00:00:00 show_title= link_titles= show_intro= show_section= link_section= show_category= link_category= show_vote= show_author= show_create_date= show_modify_date= show_pdf_icon= show_print_icon= show_email_icon= language= keyref= readmore= 1 0 3 0 984 robots= author= 4239 Another 9 year old killed in Belize City another-9-year-old-killed-in-belize-city

RenanThe family of 9 year-old Aaron Michael Myvette Pope is preparing to bury the young man after he was shot to death while sleeping in his George Street home on Saturday December 31, 2011 around 4:30 a.m. There is also another George Street resident by the name of Dale Tillett, 19, who is clinging on to life after being shot in a separate incident about a half hour before Pope’s shooting.


According to police, Aaron Pope and his mother, Michelle Myvette, were sleeping in one room, while his sister, Kadesha Saldano, was in a separate room on the upper flat of their house at #25 George Street. That’s when an armed, unknown assailant ran up their steps, invaded their home, and started firing gunshots indiscriminately at the rooms.
   Michelle Myvette told the media that she woke to the sounds of gunshots inside her home; her daughter, Kadesha, ran into her room and screamed that she had been shot in the left elbow. Myvette said that she immediately became concerned about her little boy, Aaron, who was quiet.

Myvette said that she called out to him, and took him in her arms; that’s when she realized that he had been hit by one of the bullets as well. Myvette said that she immediately made arrangements to rush Aaron to the Karl Heusner Memorial Hospital, but by that time he was beyond help.

According to Myvette, the doctors discovered that the bullet, which had hit him went through one side of his brain, and exited the next side. Little Aaron succumbed to his injuries at around 8 a.m. that same morning.

   Police investigation in this matter is in its early stages, and as a result, police have not released any information as to why this young man has become the victim of this crime.

Many Belize City residents speculate that the attack on this family came as a bi-product of a shooting, which occurred a half hour earlier at the Palm Island Night Club on the Northern Highway, and another which occurred at Taylor’s Alley minutes before the home invasion.

According to police, Renan Briceno Jr., 32, an employee of SMART! Telecommunications and a resident of Orange Walk Town, allegedly shot 19 year-old Dale Tillett and 25 year-old Brandon Tillett after they had an altercation in the parking lot of the nightclub.

According to witnesses, Briceno and an associate made an appearance at the nightclub representing his company, who was sponsoring an event there. Briceno’s associate was reportedly accosted by a couple of the nightclub’s patrons, and that’s when Briceno and his friend decided to leave.

When Briceno and his friend walked to his car, the men followed, and that’s when he reportedly pulled out his licensed firearm from his vehicles and fired several shots at the men. One of the bullets hit Dale Tillett in the head, and one of them grazed Brandon Tillett on the left foot.

Both men were rushed to the hospital, and Briceno was taken into police custody shortly afterwards. Dale Tillett has since been able to continue clinging to life; Brandon Tillett has been treated and released.

Renan Briceno Jr. has since been arraigned in the Magistrate’s Court for attempted murder, dangerous harm, and the use of deadly means of harm. He has been remanded until February 16, 2011.

Because it is a firearm offense, he could not be granted bail at the Magistrate’s Court level, and as a result, his attorneys Dickie Bradley and David Moralez have already filed an application for a bail hearing in the Supreme Court. He remains on remand until the date of that hearing.

The management at Palm Island has sent out a press release saying that they’ve made all attempts to create a safe environment at the club. According to the release, there were five police officers on duty inside the club, who made thorough checks for concealed weapons.

The release continued that the incident occurred on the premises after the nightclub had already closed for business. The management has also stated categorically that there is nothing that they could have done to prevent this unfortunate incident, since it seems that the altercation was one of a personal nature.

Minutes after the shooting at Palm Island, a barrage of gunfire was heard in the vicinity of the Taylor’s Alley area (it is also known as Pregnant’s Alley). Fortunately, no one was injured in that shooting, but almost immediately after that, the home invasion of little Aaron Pope occurred, where he was shot and killed.

The Pope family has had to suffer a loss before. On June 22, 2010, Elbert Pope, father of Aaron Pope, was gunned down on the corner of Sittee and Mahogany Streets. His murder is still unexplained, and according to some Belize City residents who’ve spoken to the media, his father’s death could have a connection to Aaron’s death.

Whatever the connection, the Belize City community mourns the loss of a happy and brilliant young man who didn’t deserve his life to be taken away from him in the fashion it was. -1 1 0 39 1/5/2012 06:00:00 62 1/5/2012 22:04:33 64 0 0/0/0000 00:00:00 1/5/2012 06:00:00 0/0/0000 00:00:00 show_title= link_titles= show_intro= show_section= link_section= show_category= link_category= show_vote= show_author= show_create_date= show_modify_date= show_pdf_icon= show_print_icon= show_email_icon= language= keyref= readmore= 2 0 5 0 1648 robots= author= 4240 Charged for drug trafficking charged-for-drug-trafficking

DarrellOn Thursday December 29th police officers on mobile patrol on Castle Street spotted a man carrying a black plastic bag.When he spotted police officers, the man ran and police set chase and caught up with him. He was seen throwing the bag inside a nearby yard on Freetown Road.  A search of the bag revealed that it contained a leaf like substance.

On Friday December 30th, 2011, 29-year-old Darrell Cayetano, a resident of #20 Castle Street, appeared before Senior Magistrate Sharon Frazer in Court #2, where he was charged with a single count of drug trafficking.  Police say that on Thursday, December 29, while on Freetown Road he was found in possession of 293 grams of marijuana. 
Cayetano pleaded not guilty to the charge and bail was offered to him in the sum of $6,000 plus one surety of the same amount.  Cayetano’s next court date is scheduled for February 21.

-1 1 0 39 1/5/2012 06:00:00 62 0/0/0000 00:00:00 0 0 0/0/0000 00:00:00 1/5/2012 06:00:00 0/0/0000 00:00:00 show_title= link_titles= show_intro= show_section= link_section= show_category= link_category= show_vote= show_author= show_create_date= show_modify_date= show_pdf_icon= show_print_icon= show_email_icon= language= keyref= readmore= 1 0 4 0 485 robots= author= 4241 Ex-cop gets off drug and ammunition charges ex-cop-gets-off-drug-and-ammunition-charges

DennisOn June 9 of last year, 19-year-old ex-police constable, Dennis Carr was charged with keeping unlicensed ammunition after police claimd he had 8 rounds of 9mm ammunition when he was searched. He was additionally charged with aggravated assault with a scissors, allegedly against Sgt. Santiago Gongora. During the incident Carr was shot to the right heel.


Those charges however did not hold up in court on Friday December 30th when Carr appeared before Senior Magistrate Sharon Frazer for trial. The case against Carr dismantled after Magistrate Frazer told him that there was no evidence against him on the charge of keeping unlicensed ammunition. She however, found that there was evidence for him to answer to the charge of aggravated assault upon the Sergeant. 

In the end, Carr was acquitted of both charges when Senior Magistrate Sharon Frazer told the court that while she has seen both defendants and police come before her court and fabricate stories in the past about how an incident occurred, in the case of Carr, she was not convinced that Carr assaulted Sgt. Gongora. She however, was convinced that Sgt. Gongora shot Carr and then he had to give a reason why he shot him. Senior Magistrate Sharon Frazer said that in the testimonies of the police officers, no one could say that they had seen him throw anything in the nearby area but yet when they conducted a search, they claim they found the ammunition.  She also noted that in the trial, evidence revealed that when Carr was shot, he was shot from behind and that there was a lot of inconsistencies in Sgt. Gongora’s statement. 

 In his defense, Carr testified under oath that on the day in question, he was riding a bicycle on Central American Boulevard near the corner of and Neal’s Penn Road heading towards Dolphin Street when he heard a police mobile stop to his left.  According to Carr, the four police officers rushed out towards him with guns in their hands. He said he recognized two of the policemen as Officer Lopez and Sgt. Gongora. Carr said the officers told him to come to them but he grew afraid because he had weed on him. He jumped off his bicycle and ran into a nearby yard. It was at that point that he said he heard a couple of shots ring out behind him and seconds later, he felt numbness on his foot and realized that he had been shot to his right heel. He fell to the ground and after being shot and took the opportunity to try to swallow the weed.  When he was unable to swallow it all, he threw it in the area and that’s when he saw Officer Lopez and Sgt. Gongora standing over him with their guns.  According to Carr, the Sergeant and the other police officers began to talk with each other asking if they had seen him throwing anything in the area. 

 Carr has had his share of run-ins with the law.  He lost his job as a police officer when he first came before the court on a charge of theft of a cell phone from his ex-common law wife among other charges.

-1 1 0 39 1/5/2012 06:00:00 62 0/0/0000 00:00:00 0 0 0/0/0000 00:00:00 1/5/2012 06:00:00 0/0/0000 00:00:00 show_title= link_titles= show_intro= show_section= link_section= show_category= link_category= show_vote= show_author= show_create_date= show_modify_date= show_pdf_icon= show_print_icon= show_email_icon= language= keyref= readmore= 1 0 3 0 766 robots= author= 4242 Kevin Lee meets bail kevin-lee-meets-bail

KevinKun Lin Lee, a.k.a. Kevin Lee, was able to meet a $10,000 bail when he appeared in Magistrate’s Court on Friday December 30th. Days earlier on Wednesday, December 21, Lee appeared before Senior Magistrate Sharon Frazer for the second time on a single charge of aggravated assault of an indecent nature upon a 20-year-old woman and was granted bail in the sum of $10,000 plus one or two sureties of $5,000.


Up until Friday, December 23, Lee was unable to meet his bail and was further remanded to Hattieville Prison until he could meet his bail. He was able to do so on Friday December 30th during the morning session of the court. Upon exiting the court, Lee had a message to Belize.  He wrote on a piece of white typing sheet the following: “I have confessed all my mistakes and fault to Jesus.  I know believe in the salvation of Jesus Christ, and I will not do the mistake again. I will no longer do the things that are undesired by the Lord. I hope that you will become Christine (Christian) too so that you can receive his grace and mercy, that you can receive his blessings, and to have eternal life in Heaven.”

Lee has several conditions to his bail among them is that he surrender all his travel documents including his passport to the clerk of court before he goes out on bail. Kun Lin Lee is due back in court on January 30.
Lee was arrested and charged after he was found videotaping hundreds of acupuncture sessions with his clients. -1 1 0 39 1/5/2012 06:00:00 62 0/0/0000 00:00:00 0 0 0/0/0000 00:00:00 1/5/2012 06:00:00 0/0/0000 00:00:00 show_title= link_titles= show_intro= show_section= link_section= show_category= link_category= show_vote= show_author= show_create_date= show_modify_date= show_pdf_icon= show_print_icon= show_email_icon= language= keyref= readmore= 1 0 2 0 58 robots= author= 4243 Moses Sulph off the hook moses-sulph-off-the-hook

MosesOn Monday, July 25, 2011, Moses Sulph, who is a member of COLA and former employee of the Government of Belize, was charged with harm upon a female, identified as Edita Sanedra.


 On Thursday, July 21, 2011, Sanedra reported to police that she and Sulph were at his Flamboyant Street home when they got into a misunderstanding and Sulph pushed her in the chest.  A doctor, who had examined Sanedra, classified her injuries as harm.  When Sulph appeared in the #1 Court before the then Chief Magistrate Margaret Gabb McKenzie, he was charged with a single count of harm.  But on Friday December 30th, Sulph saw the matter against him. The dismissal occurred before Senior Magistrate Sharon Frazer in Court #2.    According to the court prosecutor, Sanedra gave police a statement indicating to the court that she does not want any further court action in the matter against Sulph.  After hearing the good news, Sulph emerged from the court room happy and smiling but had no comment about the case. -1 1 0 39 1/5/2012 06:00:00 62 0/0/0000 00:00:00 0 0 0/0/0000 00:00:00 1/5/2012 06:00:00 0/0/0000 00:00:00 show_title= link_titles= show_intro= show_section= link_section= show_category= link_category= show_vote= show_author= show_create_date= show_modify_date= show_pdf_icon= show_print_icon= show_email_icon= language= keyref= readmore= 1 0 1 0 170 robots= author= 4244 Geovanni Choto Krem Cycling Classic Champion geovanni-choto-krem-cycling-classic-champion

GeovanniThe 22nd Annual Krem Sugar and Cream Cycling Classic have now etched its way in the pages of Belizean Sports annals.

The 91.4-miles event, which started from the Corozal Free Zone and concluded at the junction of Central American Boulevard and Mahogany Street, attracted some 62 Elite riders. This is the smallest field of competitors in recent years. From this amount only 34 riders concluded the course.

In a time of 3:43:10, it was Geovanni Choto of Western Spirit that rode into the history books when he became the first rider to cross the finish line. Choto is the first Belizean to capture this event since 2009. The second rider to cross the finish line was Belizean Byron Pope of Benny’s Megabytes in a time of 3:43:11, while the third rider to cross the finish line was Belizean Peter Choto of Western Spirit in a time of 3:43:43. This was the first time in many years that Belizeans laid claims to the top three positions.

The other top finishers in this year’s event included John Delong of VeloShine Cycling Team that secured fourth place in a time of 3:43:44, fifth place went to Edward Reyes of D&D Cycling Team in a time of 3:43:45, sixth place went to Marlon Castillo of Santino’s Belize in a time of 3:43:49, seventh place went to Leroy Casasola of Santino’s Belize in a time of 3:44:56, eighth place went to Gregory Lovell also of Santino’s Belize in a time of 3:45:01, ninth place went to Allen Castillo of Benny’s Megabytes in a time of 3:45:01, while tenth place went to Christian McNish also of Benny’s Megabytes in a time of 3:45:10.

In the junior and youth categories, some 22 riders participated in the 55-mile event, which started from in front of the Orange Walk Town Hall and also concluded at the junction of the Central American Boulevard and Mahogany Street. Of this amount, some 20 riders completed the course. Oscar Qurious Jr. of Cayo Uprising Cycling Team won with a time of 2:41:10. The second place finisher was Deezan Spence of D & D Cycling Team in a time of 2:42:13; third place went to Zahir Figueroa of Cayo Uprising in a time of 2:43:11, fourth place went to Giovanni Lovell, who is unattached, in a time of 2:43:12; and fifth place went to Riis Cattouse of C-Ray Junior Cycling Club in a time of 2:43:34.

In the Masters’ categories 4 and 5 race, some 7 riders participated in the 54-mile course, which also started from in front of the Orange Walk Town Hall. This event like the others also concluded at the junction of  Central American Boulevard and Mahogany Street.

At the end of the course, it was Mexican Manuel Gilberto Herrera-Busto of Depredadores, who claimed first place in a time of 2:37:15. The second rider to cross the finish line was another Mexican, Carlos Castelan De La Torre, in a time of 2:38:20; third place went to Belizean Robert Liam Stewart of M&M Engineering in a time of 2:39:16. The fourth rider to cross the finish line was Omar Valerio Gomez-Queme of Depredadores in a time of 2:39:33. Meanwhile, the fifth rider to cross the finish line was Edmondo Delgado-Diaz also of Depredadores in a time of 2:39:36.

In the female category, six riders participated in the 54-mile event. In a time of 3:11:20, it was Kaya Cattouse of C-Ray Cycling, who captured first place. She was followed by Shalini Zabaneh of Team Sagitun. Third place went to Patricia Chavarria of AAA Loans Cycling Team in a time of 3:11:21, fourth place went to Gabrielle Lovell, who is unattached, with the fifth place going to Kirah Eiley of C-Ray Cycling in a time of 3:11:27.

-1 1 0 41 1/5/2012 06:00:00 62 0/0/0000 00:00:00 0 0 0/0/0000 00:00:00 1/5/2012 06:00:00 0/0/0000 00:00:00 show_title= link_titles= show_intro= show_section= link_section= show_category= link_category= show_vote= show_author= show_create_date= show_modify_date= show_pdf_icon= show_print_icon= show_email_icon= language= keyref= readmore= 1 0 4 0 1110 robots= author= 4245 Interoffice Softball to resume interoffice-softball-to-resume

The 10th Annual Interoffice Softball Competition will resume on Monday January 9, 2012, at Rogers Stadium. The competition had to be suspended late last year because of the many downpours and the wet conditions of the playing field.

On Monday January 9, 2012, at 7:00 pm the only game on the schedule will be played between KHMH and the Police.

The competition will continue on Wednesdays, Fridays, Saturdays, and Sundays right up to the championship game.

-1 1 0 41 1/5/2012 06:00:00 62 0/0/0000 00:00:00 0 0 0/0/0000 00:00:00 1/5/2012 06:00:00 0/0/0000 00:00:00 show_title= link_titles= show_intro= show_section= link_section= show_category= link_category= show_vote= show_author= show_create_date= show_modify_date= show_pdf_icon= show_print_icon= show_email_icon= language= keyref= readmore= 1 0 3 0 111 robots= author= 4246 Premier League elects new officers premier-league-elects-new-officers

The Premier League of Belize held its Extraordinary Congress on Wednesday December 28, 2011, at the Football Federation of Belize Headquarters in Belmopan.

The only item that was on the agenda for the Extraordinary Congress was the elections of officers. The elections were conducted by Eustace Ireland who is the Chairman of the FFB Electorial Commission. Ireland was assisted by Vice Chairman Leroy Romero, and committee members Jennifer Arzu and Herman Pastor Jr.

The Extraordinary Congress saw the participation of 12 teams from the top football league in the country. At the end of the congress, the following were elected to serve the Premier League of Belize: Chairman Jamie O. Perdomo, Vice-Chairman Al Henry Westby, and the committee members are; Wilhelm Miguel, Celso Carcamo and Onan McLean.

The National Sports Council was represented by the Ag. Director Patrick Henry, while the Justice of the Peace was Paul Morgan.

-1 1 0 41 1/5/2012 06:00:00 62 0/0/0000 00:00:00 0 0 0/0/0000 00:00:00 1/5/2012 06:00:00 0/0/0000 00:00:00 show_title= link_titles= show_intro= show_section= link_section= show_category= link_category= show_vote= show_author= show_create_date= show_modify_date= show_pdf_icon= show_print_icon= show_email_icon= language= keyref= readmore= 1 0 2 0 186 robots= author= 4247 The year that was in Sports – Part l the-year-that-was-in-sports--part-l

SilverThe 2011 sporting year in Belize started out with the 21st running of the Annual Krem Sugar and Cream Cycling Classic on January 1, 2011.


The Annual New Year’s Day Cycling Classic in the open elite category was once again dominated by foreign cyclists, with the only difference being that the gap between the top two finishers and the third place finisher  was some 17.46 minutes. The 91.1-mile event which started from the Corozal Free Zone and concluded at the junction of the Central American Boulevard and Mahogany Street, attracted 82 riders. 

The 91.1-mile race was captured by Costa Rican, Marco Salas of Benny’s Megabytes in a time of 3:59:55.

The 14th Annual La Ruta Maya River Challenge was captured by Team Ziprider, which consisted of Jerry Rhaburn, Efrain and Felix Crux. The team, which is sponsored by Discovery Expeditions, paddled it’s way into the country’s sports annals when it repeated as overall champions, edging out their archrivals the Belize Bank team by one second.
Team Belize Bank, which is made up of Ervin, Amado and Daniel paddled their canoe across the finish line at the Bel-Can Bridge in Belize City on Monday, March 7, two seconds before Ziprider, but after the times for the four stages of the race were tabulated, and Team Ziprider had clocked 18:00:04 and much to their disappointment, Belize Bank had clocked 18:00:05.

The Belize Cycling Association sponsored its 12th Annual Junior Cross Country Cycling Classic on Sunday, April 3, 2011. The 73-mile event which, started from the ferry in Succotz Village at 9:00 am, attracted some 33 riders with 20 junior riders completing the course.

In a time of 3:56:21, it was Joel Borland of Team INDECO who  was the first rider to cross the finish line, captured the junior cross country title. The second rider to cross the finish line was Juan Umana of Cayo High Road Cycling.  Third place went to Kyle Gentle also of Cayo High Road Cycling, fourth place went to Austin Armstrong of Twin Towns Cycling, while Giovanni Lovell of Team INDECO  rounded off the top five finishers.

Meanwhile, the Belize Cycling Association sponsored its biggest one-day event on Saturday April 23, 2011, where some 133 riders participated in the historic 83rd Annual Holy Saturday Cross Country Cycling event. The Annual Holy Saturday Cross Country Cycling race is the biggest one-day sporting event in the country and over the course of the years has seen it fair share of changes to the tradition.

The event started promptly at 6:00 am from the Old August Meat Shop at Mile 1 ½ on the Western Highway. The peloton traveled the entire length of the Western Highway to Columbus Park in San Ignacio Town and then back to Belize City where the 140- mile race concluded in front of the historic Memorial Park on Marine Parade.
At the end of the journey, it was Guatemalan rider Luis Alberto Santizo, who rode for the Sugar City Starz of Orange Walk Town, was the first rider to cross the finish line. He completed the 142-mile event in a time of 6:08:10. Santizo was followed by his countryman Carlos Gabriel Hernandez of the Guatemalan National Selection, who took second place in a time of 6:08:47 to complete a clean sweep of the top two positions.

Belizean Shane Vasquez of Team Western Spirit/Galen Eagles finished third in a time of 6:09:00; American Jeremy Conn of Team HICAPIE Green Creation finished fourth in a time of 6:09:10; while Belizean Darnell Barrow, who was actually leading the race into Belize City had to settle with the fifth position in a time of 6:09:35.

The Americas Council of Sports Ministers (CADA) in its 11th General Assembly that was held at the Windsor Barra Hotel in Rio de Janerio, Brazil, held its elections of officers for the period 2011-2013, and Belize’s Minister of the Public Service, Governance Improvement, Elections & Boundaries and Sports Hon. John Saldivar was unanimously elected as the Vice President of the Americas Sports Council.

Hon. Saldivar, who has now earned the distinction of being the first Belizean Sports Minister to ever attend the Americas Council of Sports Ministers meeting, has also gone down in the history books of being the first Belizean Minister of Sports to be elected to such a prestigious post.

On Monday May 2, Minister Saldivar also distinguished himself at the Central American and Caribbean Sports Council (CONCECADE) Assembly where he was an instant hit with the 16- nation organization.

The Belize Softball Federation was pleased to announce that the Lennox “Carrots” Cattouse award joined the list of prestigious softball awards that were presented at the conclusion of the 21st National Women’s Softball Championship on Sunday August 28, 2011.

The award was made possible by Nelberth Flowers, who said that it will be presented yearly to the Head Coach, who leads his team to the national title.  Flowers, continued by saying that the Lennox “Carrots” Cattouse Award will help to keep the memories of “Carrots,” who dedicated 40 years of his life to softball, both as a player and as a coach alive for future generations of softballers to come.

Telemedia is the national softball champions of Belize. The 21st National Women’s Softball Championship came to an end on Sunday August 28, 2011, when Telemedia defeated its archrival Mirage Lady Rebels by the score of 3-1 in the 10th and final game of the Double Elimination format championship to regained the national title.

The 21st National Women’s Championship started on Friday August 26, with two games on the schedule, and Hilly Martinez, Secretary General of the Belize Olympic and Commonwealth Games Association, and ISF Hall of Fame Member, officially opened the games on Saturday August 27, 2011. 

At the end of the championship, Rudolph “Sir Andy” Anderson, Honorary Life Member of the Belize Softball Federation and a former Assistant Commissioner of Softball, presented the Phil Sims Memorial Trophy to the newly-crowned National Softball Champions of Belize Telemedia, as well as the championship medals and individual awards to the respective winners.

Jessie Jones, wife of the late Lennox “Carrots” Cattouse presented the first ever Lennox “Carrots” Cattouse Award to Raymond Lashley of Telemedia.

The Belize Rural High School U-17 softball team returned home on Tuesday November 22, 2011, from the 3rd Central American and Caribbean Scholar Games that were held in Panama City, Panama. The student-athletes were welcomed back home at the Philip Goldson International Airport by Juan Gongora, Principal of Belize Rural High School, members of the students body from Belize Rural High School, parents, guardians, officials from the Belize Softball Federation, Director of the National Sports Council Patrick Henry, the media and other Belizeans, who were out there to support the team.

Following its arrival at the Philip Goldson International Airport, the team was transported to Rogers Stadium via a motorcade that took them through the principal streets of Belize City. At Rogers Stadium, the team was officially welcomed back home by the Director of the National Sports Council Patrick Henry, after which Ismael “Miley” Garcia gave a short address on behalf of the Hon. John Saldivar, the Minister of Sports. The team was also addressed by Edward “Ned” Pitts, President of the Belize Olympic and Commonwealth Games Association.

In Belize’s first game of the championship, Belize defeated Panama by the score of 11-0. The winning pitcher for Belize was Ashley Lucas. In fact, Lucas was the pitcher of record for all the games that Belize played in the championship. In game two, Guatemala defeated Belize by the score of 4-1. In the third game, Belize defeated Panama once again by the score of 11-7, and then bounced back to upend Guatemala by the score of 12-3.  -1 1 0 41 1/5/2012 06:00:00 62 0/0/0000 00:00:00 0 0 0/0/0000 00:00:00 1/5/2012 06:00:00 0/0/0000 00:00:00 show_title= link_titles= show_intro= show_section= link_section= show_category= link_category= show_vote= show_author= show_create_date= show_modify_date= show_pdf_icon= show_print_icon= show_email_icon= language= keyref= readmore= 1 0 1 0 79 robots= author= 4248 Year in Review 2011 year-in-review-2011

HistoricJanuary

PM Barrow and Minister Heredia Save Cruise Tourism
In January, the cruise tourism industry was in serious trouble. Small boat tender operators were being displaced by new regulations in the industry introduced by Carnival Cruise Lines, Royal Caribbean and Norwegian Cruise Lines. Prime Minister Hon. Dean Barrow led a delegation to Florida, including the Minister of Tourism and other ministry officials, to negotiate with the cruise lines. The delegation held a press conference on Monday, January 10, during which the Prime Minister announced that the cruise lines had agreed to delay implementation of new requirements for tender operators. Those requirements included that each tender moving passengers from the cruise ships to the mainland must have a capacity of 150 passengers. The tenders were also to have a minimum of two million US dollars $2 Million insurance coverage. The announcement took tender providers by surprise and some 25 tenders along with some 75 employees would be displaced by the decision.
The PM’s visit to Florida led the cruise lines to agree to deal exclusively with a Belizean company upon implementation of its new requirements. During the delay, small boat operators were expected to pool resources and form a company to make ready for the cruise lines requirements. Prime Minister Barrow explained that he would approach the Development Finance Corporation to ensure “that it can play a role to provide financing for the new company.” Added to that, the company will be offered “tax and duty concessions that is legally available” to ensure that it gets off the ground.  
Another issue in the industry was pricing. The situation was one where the association offered to ferry passengers at a rate of between US$6.54 to $8.54 per passenger. The cruise lines including Carnival, Royal Caribbean and Norwegian Cruise Lines were seeking a price closer to US$5.00 per passenger. The situation led to the cancellation of calls to Belize by Carnival. Almost a year later the future of the industry is still uncertain. Government maintains that the industry is for the benefit of Belizeans and their interests must be protected. 


Ministry of Sports Investigates FFB Elections
The FFB called an executive election on Saturday, December 18, and by most accounts the process was far from democratic. Challengers for the executive posts were disqualified by members of the established executive and an endorsement session was held. After receiving numerous complaints about the election process, the Ministry of Sports announced that a committee had been appointed by the Minister to investigate specific matters relating to that election. Hon. John Saldivar, appointed the committee via a Statutory Instrument cited as the Sports (Investigations Commiteee) Order 2010. This is an exercise of his powers granted to him in Section 25 of the Sports Act, Chapter 46 of the Laws of Belize. The Act allows the Minister responsible for sports to “order all or any of the activities of the Council, sports committee, or a sporting organization to be investigated and reported on by a person or persons as he may specify.” The members of the committee were Mr. Joseph McGann, Mr. Gerald Henry and Mr. Oswald Twist. McGann is the Committee Chairman. The committee’s report exposed several irregularities in the election of executives at the district level and proved that FFB was operating counter to the statutes of FIFA. The findings led to a long battle between FFB and the National Sports Council later in the year.


Justice Manuel Sosa is the New President of Court of Appeal
On January 3, Justice Manuel Sosa was sworn in as President of the Court of Appeal by the Governor General, Sir Colville Young, at the Belize House in Belmopan. Justice Sosa succeeded Justice Elliot Mottley, who resigned as President of the Court of Appeal at the end of December 2010. Justice Sosa became the first Belizean Presidentof the Court of Appeal.

 

February

Butane Companies exposed
7 News aired a series of pieces that exposed the fact that consumers have been paying for far more butane than what they had been receiving from the local companies. In one instance, a 100-pound cylinder of butane was short of 30 pounds, that’s nearly 1/3 of what was to have been received by the consumer. One businessman proved that he was shorted more than eighteen thousand dollars due to the butane scam. The series also determined that the proper way to sell butane was by the pound and not the gallon.
The Government of Belize reacted quickly to the revelation. Prime Minister Barrow earmarked half a million dollars to boost the Bureau of Standards in an effort to secure equipment to be able to appropriately regulate the butane industry. Additionally, the Ministry of Economic Development introduced a statutory instrument to ensure that butane companies use the appropriate measurement for the sale of butane. That measurement is that butane companies should retail butane by the pound and not by the gallon. The instrument mandated that the companies purchase scales for butane sales.


Cane Farmers thank PM for saving Sugar Industry
In a small but heartfelt gesture, on Tuesday, February 1, the Cane Farmers’ Association expressed their appreciation to the Prime Minister for rescuing the industry from the brink of collapse. Prime Minister Barrow was presented with a plaque of appreciation by representatives of the Cane Farmers’ Association. The plaque was presented to the PM in recognition of his Government’s timely intervention in providing a BZ$10 Million loan to BSI to enable the crop season to commence, as well as a grant of one million Belize dollars to the farmers.
The plaque reads: “Certificate of Appreciation: This certificate is awarded to the Honourable Dean Barrow, Prime Minister, for the support given to the cane farmers to provide the third cane payment and for your intervention to have the commencement of the 2010-2011 Crop Season. Also, we are very grateful for the One Million Dollar Grant (BZ$1,000,000) which was provided to the cane farmers as a donation.”
Presenting the plaque to the Prime Minister on behalf of the Cane Farmers’ Association was the Chairman of its Committee of Management, Alfredo Ortega.


March

More Poverty Alleviation Measures in GOB Budget
On March 11, Prime Minister Barrow presented the national budget for the fiscal year 2011/2012 entitled “Celebrating Growth, Sustaining Recovery”. The budget once again included poverty alleviation programs for marginalized citizens. With an initial $2.5 million allocated, the food subsidy program was featured once again and it has been replenished and expanded to the Northside of Belize City and rolled out to the Cayo District to provide relief for residents of San Ignacio and Santa Elena. Under that program, poor families receive basic food items at almost half the retail price. The Government reactivated the Countrywide Apprenticeship Program with an initial $1 million. It will pay young people to learn a practical trade by way of apprenticeship to skilled crafts, persons. The Conditional Cash Transfer Program that was introduced the previous year was fully rolled out with an initial budget of $4 million from local resources. It targets the most deprived and disadvantaged in urban and rural areas. Cash is given to poor families in exchange for participation in developmental activities such as immunization, school attendance and family education. PM Barrow also introduced the childcare subsidy program. Working parents will be subsidized to help with the cost of childcare services. Unemployed parents will have time to take advantage of job preparation programs and take up employment knowing that quality care is being provided for their children.


Supreme Court Judgment Reveals BEL’s Shady Accounting Practices
On Tuesday, March 15, Justice Minette Hafiz gave her ruling on BEL’s appeal of PUC’s Final Decision on rates for the 2008 Annual Tariff  Review Proceedings. The ruling was 84 pages long and included submissions made by BEL, PUC and an independent expert. Justice Hafiz gave a summary of her findings that highlighted 17 points before she made her ruling. She explained that PUC has the power to establish Rate Setting Methodology for review proceedings. She pointed out that the PUC did not engage in retroactive ratemaking when it changed the Regulated Asset Value for the years 2005,  2006 and 2007  because according to section 32 of the PUC Act, the commission has the authority to review past decisions   by  making  adjustments and corrections, which is applied to a current review period. This struck down BEL’s key argument against PUC’s final decision. Justice Hafiz then ruled that the “Final Decision of the Public Utilities Commission made on the 26th of June 2008  in respect of the Annual Review Proceedings for the setting of electricity rates and tariffs for the period 1st July 2008 to 30th June 2009 is  to be published in the Gazette in the form of a Statutory Instrument.”
Justice Hafiz also ruled that “the Mollejon Transmission Line   is contributed capital and as such the   PUC’s decision that the MTL is not part of the Regulated Asset Value   is not wrongful, erroneous and unreasonable.” BEL registered an investment of $36 million in 2008 to purchase the MTL. However, the MTL purchased from BECOL was already owned by BEL and paid for by customers from 2001 to 2005. This registered investment allowed the company to post a budget deficit for 2008; therefore, no dividends was paid to shareholders. In actuality, there should have been no deficit and the money listed as investment should have been part of the profit shared among shareholders.


GOB Removes GST from Fuel
A sharp increase in fuel was scheduled for the weekend of Friday March 11th. Prime Minister Barrow waived the tax on the fuel to give Belizeans a million- dollar tax break. Government removed the General Sales Tax from the shipment of fuel that came into the country on that very weekend and did not replace it with any other tax for that one shipment. Giving tax breaks, however, is not a sustainable way to manage a country and the Prime Minister explained that on the shipment that was to arrive later on, 10 days later to be precise, the government could not afford to absorb any more losses. As such, the government implemented a flat tax, which would be equivalent to the 12.5 percent GST, if it were applied to fuel which cost 85 dollars a barrel. The fixed rate will see a ceiling on government’s take upon price increase. In addition to the setting of a flat tax on fuel, the Prime Minister says he’ll get into consultations with gas dealers to see if they too would be able to consider having a flat rate on their take.


$47.9M for road to Guatemala
On February 28, the Government of Belize through the Ministry of Works signed on to a $47,995,867.50 contract with Cisco Construction Limited. The contract will see the upgrading of the road from Big Falls Village in the Toledo district to the Belize/Guatemala Border at Jalacte. In effect, the road will completely open up a second border crossing point between Belize and Guatemala at Jalacte. The road will also allow for better access to villages in the Toledo District. The project is being financed through a loan from the Kuwait Fund for the Arab Economic Development and AFID (OPEC Fund for the International Development), the Central American Bank for Economic Integration (CABEI). Counterpart funding is being contributed by the Government of Belize.
A total of 23 miles of road will be paved from Big Falls Village at mile 14 known as ‘the Dump’ to a location 1.5 kilometers south of Jalacte Village. The road will pass though the villages of Mafredi, San Antonio, Santa Cruz, Santa Elena and Pueblo Viejo. The road cross section will be comprised of two 3.25 meters wide lanes with one meter wide paved shoulders; this is a total of 8.5 meters surfaced roadway width. All major existing box culverts and concrete bridges will be rehabilitated to ensure continued service life. Cisco Construction, who will be executing the project, estimates that it will be three years before the road is complete.


Southern Belize Rejects Port for Cruise Tourism
On March 21, then Director of the Belize Tourism Board, Seleni Matus, and the Chief Executive Officer in the Ministry of Tourism, Lindsay Garbutt, met with the press to formally publicize the recommendations of an independent consultant group tasked with measuring the public’s response to the introduction of cruise tourism in southern Belize.
Rich Wilson of Seatone Consultants, in his report, “A Social Viability Assessment of Cruise Tourism in Southern Belize”, recommended that “the government of Belize should not approve a new port of call (port designation), contract or agreement with cruise lines, developers or their affiliates for operations in the Placencia Peninsula.” The report was based on two methods of collecting data. There was a series of public meetings held to allow stakeholders to express their support for or concerns about the proposition of cruise tourism in the south. Secondly, Seatone had private conversations with a wide range of people, from investors to the ordinary man on the street. The report went on to say “Not only is there widespread resistance to the establishment of cruise tourism in Placencia, as demonstrated by public sentiment, there is also abundant and compelling evidence that communities in the surrounding area are ill prepared for cruise ship arrivals.” Matus and Garbutt explained to the media that they will adhere to the recommendations. The report also includes recommendations on how to move forward. One of the recommendations can be easily adopted into the Tourism Master Plan 2010-2012. Seatone recommends that the BTB conduct a “Limits of Acceptable Change” (LAC) survey in southern Belize. This aims to center on effective planning and visitor management.
Some saw the decision to reject the Placencia port proposal as a tough blow in the fight to bring economic development to the South.


Belize Sign $6 Million Agreement with Japan
On March 17, Japan’s Ambassador to Belize, His Excellency Hiroshi Yamaguchi, visited the country for Japan Day in Belize City. During the visit, Yamaguchi signed an agreement with the Ministry of Health to access $6 million in grant funding from the Japanese Social Development Fund (JSFD). The fund will be used to raise awareness about the importance of proper nutrition to a child’s development. It will be focused in the Toledo District. The official signing of the agreement was preceded by meetings between the Ministry of Health and the Toledo District Health Committee to finalize the selection of the project implementing agency. Grants from the JSFD are made to eligible recipients based on income level classification. The grants are administered by the World Bank and distributed in phases.


April

Belize gets $20 Million for Belize City Youths and Placencia Water Expansion
On  April 19th, Prime Minister Dean Barrow and Caroline Clarke, the IDB Representative in Belize, signed two loan contracts each in the amount of US$5 million for the financing of projects to support youth in Belize City and for a water and sanitation program in Placencia.
One of the five million dollar loans will be directly targeted at a Community Action for Public Safety Programme (CAPS), which is aimed at efforts that will reduce youth involvement in major violent crimes in Belize City. Under the CAPS programme, intervention programs will be put in place to reduce youth involvement in criminal activities as well as youth violent behavior in schools. Additionally, programs will be targeting recidivism among youth in juvenile rehabilitation institutions. The funding will also be used to enhance the government’s capacity to formulate and implement evidence-based policies on public safety.
Under the second loan agreement, an integrated water and sanitation programme will be put in place for the Placencia Peninsula. This will be specifically to provide and increase access to waste water-treatment through the development of a new sewage collection, treatment and disposal system on the Placencia Peninsula. The water system will integrate existing individual wastewater treatment facilities into a new collection, treatment and disposal system that best meets the needs of the Placencia Peninsula Residents. It will also provide institutional strengthening and knowledge transfer through training sessions, public awareness campaigns and the establishment of benchmarks for the replication of additional wastewater investment projects in Belize.


PM Calls Press Conference to Discuss Crime Fighting Measures
On April 4th, Prime Minister Dean Barrow flanked by Minister of the Police and Public Safety, Hon. Douglas Singh and Minister of National Security, Hon. Carlos Perdomo and supported by heads of every law enforcement unit and their CEOs held a press conference to address the growing concerns over crime, in particular in Belize City.
During the press conference, both the Prime Minister and the Minister of Police expounded on measures which will be taken in order to address the crime situation. P.M. Barrow explained that legislative changes will be looked at to improve the conviction rate. Proposals to address the low prosecutorial rate included laws to put in place preventative detention through constitutional changes; change legislation in the process by which convicted criminals go through the appealing process; fix the law to preserve the anonymity of persons testifying in criminal cases; and finally the removal of trial by jury in cases of murder.
Prime Minister Barrow committed in investing money to provide the security forces with necessary equipment including firearms, bullet proof vests and radios. He also committed more money to be placed in the Special Branch. Gang Suppression Unit. Patrols were increased from eight hour to 12 hour shifts and all Assistant Commissioners of Police were deployed to Belize City to head various operations. Also enlisted was the assistance of the Coast Guard, who were to conduct both land and sea checkpoints and patrols. They took control of the mile 4 Western Highway Checkpoint. Additional emphasis was also placed on arresting individuals with outstanding warrants as well as those who’ve skipped bail. The idea of an ICC or an Independent Complaints Commission to oversee complaints against police officers was also unveiled.


FFB Suspended from National Sports Council
A week after the President of FIFA visited Belize and basically told the Ministry of Sports to get out of the affairs of the Football Federation of Belize, the National Sports Council suspended the FFB from the council. The federation was being investigated by the Sports Investigations Committee, which reviewed the election process, if any, of the executive board. The FFB refused to adhere to any regulations of the Ministry. The Council sent out a reminder to all sporting organizations extending the January sporting organizations registration deadline to March 31. This date was further extended to April 14th, 2011. The Sports Act of Belize requires all sporting organizations to register annually as a member of the National Sports Council. FFB refused to do so and was suspended as a member of the council. Therefore, the FFB and its affiliates were not entitled to use the equipment and facilities of the National Sports Council.


FIFA President Blatter meets with PM Barrow
President of the Federation of International Football Associations, Joseph Sepp Blatter, visited Belize for the inauguration of GOAL PROJECT II on April 13. Before attending the inauguration, Blatter paid a courtesy visit on the Prime Minister Barrow. He was accompanied by other high profile officials of FIFA, CONCACAF and FFB. His meeting with the Prime Minister lasted a little over 30 minutes. Blatter said that his conversation with Prime Minister Barrow was not about the controversy surrounding FFB but about the overall development of football in Belize. Blatter said that Prime Minister Barrow did mention the problem however, he believed that it was a small problem of personalities. What he and PM Barrow spent most of their brief time talking about is the Federation’s long term role in developing football in Belize. He was asked if he has confidence in the President of the Football Federation of Belize, Dr, Bertie Chimilio and he said that he had total confidence in him.
The occasion was also used for signing a Technical Cooperation (TC) Agreement between the IDB and the Belize Water Services, Ltd. (BWSL) in the sum of US$500,000 for the Detailed Design of a Wastewater Collection and Treatment System in Placencia.


Marcel Cardona Expelled from the UDP
The United Democratic Party Chairman, Hon. Patrick Faber, sent Marcel Cardona a letter, which considered that Cardona had ‘constructively resigned’ from the UDP. In the letter, the party chairman explained to Cardona that there have been a series of actions by him which left the party no option but to consider him as having resigned from the party. The Party Chairman explained that Cardona had refused to attend parliamentary caucuses for more than six months as well as National Party Council meetings. Cardona had also orchestrated ‘billboard and leaflet campaigns’ in an effort to embarrass the UDP’s Party Leader and Deputy Party Leader. There was also evidence of solicitations done with opposition businessmen in which he explained that if he were to be financed he would embarrass the party and the leadership. He made such an attempt at the National Assembly during the budget debate. Cardona was sighted in at least one meeting with PUP leaders at mile 25 on the Northern Highway.


Attorney Darrell Bradley to Run for Mayor
Attorney Darrell Bradley turned in his application into the United Democratic Party’s Secretariat to run for the party in the mayoral slot for the 2012 Belize City Council election. The other mayoral hopeful, Philip Willoughby, decided shortly after to not pursue the slot. He said that Darrell Bradley would be a “great asset to the council and a good person to handle the city’s affairs.”


May

Reports:  Fortis  profits up by US$17 Million
On May 4, Fortis Inc., Belize Electricity Limited’s parent company, announced that its profits from the various energy-producing and distribution operations, which they own, went up by 17 million US dollars  for the past financial year. A release published on their web site, the company claims that, “Caribbean Regulated Electric Utilities contributed $4 million, consistent with earnings for the first quarter of 2010.” There was no earnings’ contribution from Belize Electricity during the first quarter of 2011. Interestingly though, the release claimed that “Non-Regulated Fortis Generation contributed $3 million to earnings, up $1 million from the first quarter of  2010 due to contribution from the Vaca Hydroelectric Generating Facility in Belize. During this great profit take of Fortis, BEL was complaining that it was in a financial crunch. The company did not pay dividends to shareholders, making three consecutive years that the company had been unable to pay out dividends to shareholders. The company also claimed that it was unable to service loans as a result of slumping profits however, the government of Belize had guaranteed BEL’s power purchase agreement with Mexico.

 

$3 Million from DFC to Cane farmers
The Development Finance Corporation of Belize made three million dollars available for sugar cane farmers in the northern part of the country to improve their crop. Under the lending program, cane farmers are able to access between five to 20 thousand dollars at a variable interest rate of 9% per annum with a one-year grace period. The Sugar Cane Replanting program targets cane farmers, who are active and have delivered cane for three consecutive years. Farmers have to prove that they have been able to fully repay previous loans or have made meaningful efforts to repay. The loan request must be for the replanting of existing cane fields and those doing so must receive recommendations from the Sugar Industry Research and Development Institute indicating that the proposed replanting is feasible and that yields can be increased, to at least 25 tons per acre. The loans purpose must be for land preparation, equipment rental, purchase of certified seed material, purchase of agro-chemical inputs and labour for agronomic practices. Funds were made available through the Caribbean Development Bank.


Belize Signs Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disablities
On May 9, Belize became the 148th signatory to the United Nations Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities. Belize joined the global commitment to further promote, protect and ensure the equal enjoyment of all human rights by one of the most vulnerable groups in our society – persons with disabilities. Mrs. Kim Simplis Barrow, Global Ambassador for Special Olympics, was authorized by the Minister of Foreign Affairs to sign the Convention on Belize’s behalf. The Convention marks a ‘paradigm shift’ in thinking about disability as a social welfare concern to a human rights issue. It addresses the existing framework of human rights in a manner that is sensitive to the needs and situation of persons with disabilities. The Convention provides Belize with a normative framework that will help to guide continued actions with and on behalf of persons with disabilities. It will also provide the guiding principles for any legal and policy reforms that the government may deem necessary to undertake to come into compliance with the provisions of this international human rights instrument. The official signing ceremony was held at the United Nations Treaty Office in New York. Following the treaty event, Mrs. Barrow participated as a special guest at a roundtable discussion at The Gateway School of New York, a leading educational institution for students with learning disabilities.

Major fires broke out in Mountain Pine Ridge
The Forestry Department was involved in fire fighting measures to a large portion of the Pine Ridge Forest for several days. It was the peak of the fire season, which usually begins around the 15th of February annually and runs up to about the 15th of June. Assessments by the forestry department indicated that about 40 thousand acres of the 109 acres of the Mountain Pine Ridge was affected by fire. Forestry officials said that the damage the fires had on the pine ridge was minimal as the pine trees themselves were not being burnt, only the underbrush and dried vegetation were consumed by the fires.

Residents Prepare for Southside Poverty Alleviation Phase II
Over 200 residents of the city received training necessary to prepare them for employment under phase II of the Southside Poverty Alleviation Project. The training covered a wide range of areas from public service regulations and work ethics to technical work. The project was spearheaded by the Minister of Works, Hon. Anthony ‘Boots’ Martinez, and his team, and the Prime Minister gave his full blessings to the program.
Prime Minister Barrow visited the young men and women at the Civic Center and encouraged them to take advantage of the opportunity and show just how productive they can really be. The Ministry was able to secure 22 million dollars from the OPEC fund for development. Government is required to provide an additional eight million dollars in counterpart funding for the project. Phase II of the Poverty Alleviation Project features many major infrastructural work in the city’s Southside. Projects include the hot-mix paving of Central American Boulevard from Save-U to Caesar Ridge Road; Faber’s Road will be refurbished from its junction with the Western Highway to its junction with Caesar Ridge Road; the paving of Jane Usher Boulevard and Pen Road. Also under the project, the canal from Yarborough Bridge to Vernon Street Bridge will be lined with cement and properly barricaded. That of course will be accompanied by street repair of the entire stretch. In addition to the major projects mentioned, several secondary streets will be repaved as well. Those include Benbow Street, Mex Avenue, Gill Street, Baracat Street, Guerrero Street, Ross Pen Road, Reggae Street and others. The entire drainage system of the city will be improved and more homes will be repaired.


June


Government Nationalizes BEL
News of the Belize Electricity Limited’s plunge and potential collapse was in the headlines and minds of Belizeans for weeks in late May and June. BEL purchases the majority of its power from Comision Federal de Electricidad (CFE), Belize Cogeneration Energy Limited (BELCOGEN), Belize Aquaculture Limited (BAL) and BECOL. Due to various factors, including a long dry season limiting BECOL’s production and problems encountered by BAL and BELCOGEN’s breakdown earlier in the year, an even greater amount of power had to be purchased from CFE. That led to a situation where the government had to make a guarantee in a letter of credit to CFE of 10 million dollars on behalf of Fortis. Incredibly, BEL was unable pay its debtors and nationwide blackouts were imminent. In terms of its obligations to its power suppliers alone, BEL owed approximately $27 million: $5.1 million to BELCOGEN, $10 million to Mexico’s state owned Commision Federal de Electricidad(CFE) and $12 million to Fortis’s BECOL. That does not include expenses with debt to banks. Government had to start making pre-payments on its monthly bill to help BEL stay afloat. The payments allowed BEL to pay its debtors for a few days of power but a long term solution had to be born. In a release, the Government of Belize stated that it “has no dispute with BEL, BECOL or Fortis Inc. Its only interest is in maintaining an uninterrupted and reliable supply of electricity to consumers in the country, and it is prepared to take whatever reasonable steps are necessary to achieve this objective.”
At a Special session of the House of Representatives on June 20, Prime Minister Dean Barrow explained, “we would never have wanted to take over a BEL that is debt-overburdened and on the brink of operational collapse. But in one of those perfect ironies of life and politics, it is this very state of affairs that obliges us to take it over. And so we will.” He went on to introduce a bill that amends the Electricity Act to provide for the “assumption of control over electricity supply by the Government in the public interest”. The House of Representative passed the bill at 12:20 p.m. There was no participation from the Opposition, who chose not to show up at the historic meeting. The Senate approved the bill without amendments just before 4 p.m. later that afternoon.


Opportunists Stage Squatters Protest
Cordel Hyde and Johnny Briceno crawled out from the slums on March 1 to participate in a protest with illegal squatters. Led by Belizeans for Justice and COLA, a couple dozen people took to the Belcan Bridge to temporarily block the flow of traffic. Earlier in the day, the squatters were removed from property that has been allocated for infrastructural projects. The handful of individuals occupying the land were warned repeatedly but ignored the request of government. The authorities then destroyed their structures and forced them off the land. The Department of Human Services, after conducting their survey, concluded that three families have been legitimately displaced due to the removal. Those three families consisted of 12 children and eight adults. The Human Services pledged that GOB would provide temporary accommodations and assistance with other basic needs. Human Services’ and other independent investigations revealed that majority of the protestors claiming to have been displaced were not even occupants of the site. Information suggests that in fact the people, who were making their show, are actually occupants of other pieces of land in Belize City. Some of them have in fact squatted elsewhere in developing areas of Belize City and have been able to secure land through that way. Opportunists got them and their children out to the scene to paint a sensational image.


Bills Pass for Trials Without Jury
On June 20, the House of Representatives and Senate passed three important crime bills. Those are the Indictable Procedure (Amendment) Bill, 2011; the Juries (Amendment) bill, 2011, and the Supreme Court of Judicature (Amendment) Bill, 2011. The Indictable Procedures (Amendment) Bill and the Juries (Amendment) Bill provide for trial without a jury in certain criminal cases. The bill makes provisions for either the prosecution or defense to request a trial without jury. The prosecution may request a trial without jury in cases where there is potential for jury intimidation or tampering. It is no secret that there are cases in which a juror’s decision is swayed by external circumstances. It is much more difficult to bribe or intimidate a judge. The penalties for even an attempt are much harsher as well. The defense may request for a trial without jury when they feel that a jury will not afford them a fair trial. The Supreme Court of Judicature (Amendment) Bill states that an appeal against the decision of a magistrate shall not operate as an automatic stay of execution of the decision under appeal. This simply means that a granted appeal should not act as a walking paper.


Mexican Trade Mission Meets with Belizean Officials
A Mexican Trade Mission was in Belize for a two-day visit. The purpose of the visit was for potential investors to access inside information on the business climate in Belize with the hope of promoting investment, bilateral trade, business and joint ventures between Mexico and Belize. A business round table was held in which members of the Mexican delegation, officials of the Government of Belize and members of the private sector participated.
Michael Singh, Executive Director of Belize Trade and Investment Development Service (Beltraide), encouraged them to explore the great opportunities for investment in tourism. He also spoke about the Corozal Free Zone. The Free Zone had over a million visitors last year. That number is far greater than Belize’s population and investment opportunities in the zone are endless. Other Belizean pitchmen included Lincoln Blake, Director of Investment in the Ministry of Economic Development, Commerce and Industry;  and Consumer Protection; Alberto Young, Vice President of the Belize Chamber of Commerce and Industry; and Victor Recinos, Officer in Charge of Customs, Northern Border. The presentations combined to give the Mexican delegation of ten a keen understanding of opportunities available and responsibilities included when investing in Belize.
The Trade Mission was coordinated by the Mexican Business Council for Foreign Trade, Investment and Technology (COMCE) and ProMexico, the Mexican Government agency in charge of trade and investment development.

Cops Charged for Landing Drug Plane
Six men were charged in connection with a drug plane that landed in the Southern Highway on November 13 of 2010.  They were Sergeant of Police, Jacinto Roches; Lawrence Humes, Sgt. Of Police attached to Belmopan Police Station; Nelson Middleton, the driver of the Governor General; Renel Grant, a Traffic Police Officer attached to Belize City,  along with Harold Usher, a Custom’s Boatman. They all appeared in the Dangriga Magistrate’s Court.
Upon their appearance the men were committed to stand trial on November 8th. The cops were remanded into custody at the Belize Central Prison.


Apprenticeship Program Hits Full Stride
Twenty young Apprentices were scheduled to graduate on June 9.  Areas that were apprenticed in were Welding, AC/Refrigeration, Auto-mechanic, Hospitality Management, Cooking, Secretarial, Electrical, Plumbing, and Hotel Maintenance. Of the 20, 18 were hired on the spot by their respective employers and as a result they began to work on June 13 in their respective fields. All 20 youths were enrolled at the ITVET for the evening sessions, which began in September to become more qualified and skilled in their respective areas.
The program shows great success academically as well. The pre-test result of December, 2010 resulted in a lowest Math score of 14 and the highest 74. In March of 2011, a second test was re-administered and the results showed the lowest score being 48 and the highest 96. A third test was re-administered in May of 2011 and the lowest score was 53 and the highest being 98.
On June 2, they were given a tour of the Norwegian Cruise Ship and had lunch with the crew of the ship. On June 8, they were given a tour of the Hol Chan Marine Reserve and the Shark Ray Alley where they swam with sharks and rays, and learnt about the reef eco-systems. The Second Intake of the Apprenticeship Programmecommenced in July. The first intake had a 90% success rate.   

July


Banco Atlantida ups Interest to Save and Boost Sugar Industry
Banco Atlantida presented a $180 million proposal to invest in a struggling Belize Sugar Industry. The majority shareholder of BSI is the workers trust, which holds 81% of the shares. It was revealed that BSI needed a large cash injection to move forward. The company owed its lenders $60 million and BELCOGEN which is owned by BSI, owed another $60 million. They also owed an additional $10 million to the Government of Belize. That is a total of $130 million in debt. Also, just to start the next crop season, the company needed millions of dollars in working capital. An investment less than the total debt plus working capital wouldn’t be sufficient to galvanize the company. The $180 million that Banco Atlantida was prepared to invest would get the company out of debt and secure the next crop season. Shareholders would have received dividends unpaid to them for over 12 years. Investment would have also been made in the company to double its output capacity and financing would have been made available for farmers to improve their crop. BSI was granted an extension by its debtors and they are still reviewing interested investment proposals.


FFB Took National Sports Council to Court
The Football Federation of Belize took the National Sports Council to court seeking leave for Judicial Review of the council’s decision to decertify the federation after it failed to comply with registration requirements. Their case failed on June 27th because they did not give the NSC appropriate notice of their actions and Justice Minette Hafiz ordered that they withdraw their case. Attorney for the FFB, Elson Kaseke, then attempted to file a new claim but was unable because of the same technicality of not giving enough notice to the NSC. Kaseke then surrendered the Statutes of the FFB, which was at the center of its dispute with the council. However, the statutes presented by Kaseke were for 2010 despite the fact that in a sworn affidavit FFB president, Bertie Chimilio, claims that the statutes of the FFB have not been amended since 2006.
The FFB’s haste in seeking an injunction was due to a return match that Chimilio was hoping will be played in Belize on July 15. That however, did not happen.

Idea to Enshrine in the Constitution Belizean Ownership of Public Utilities Arise
There was great celebration when the Prime Minister emerged from the National Assembly building after the Bill was passed to renationalize BTL, however, that joy was shadowed by great concern. The People’s United Party expressed no regret for placing national essential utility companies in the hands of foreigners and Belizeans were worried that a future PUP government would return the companies to foreign interests upon taking office. Shortly after passing the Reacquisition Act, PM Barrow announced that the House of Representatives was to meet on Friday, July 22, to take the first step in enshrining into the constitution Belize’s national utility companies.

BTL Re-nationalized
On June 24, the Court of Appeals ruled that government’s acquisition Bill of Belize Telemedia Limited had deficiencies and was thus unconstitutional. On June 28, the Cabinet met and took the decision that government will once again be introducing law to acquire BTL at the National Assembly.  Prime Minister Barrow explained to the Guardian that notices were being issued out to parliamentarians for a House Meeting to be held on Monday, July 4. He said that while government did not agree with the ruling, new legislation will be introduced to address the deficiencies which the judges of the Court of Appeals found with the first Acquisition Act. Even so, the PM explained that government was filing an appeal to the Caribbean Court of Justice on that ruling. Amidst thunderous applause and overwhelming support both inside the national assembly and out, Prime Minister Barrow re-acquired Belize Telemedia Limited in the interest of the Belize on July 4. The House met in the morning and the Senate met in the afternoon.


Belize Welcomed Home Special Olympics Medalists
The Belize’s Special Olympics 5-a-side football team, made up of eight players and three coaches, returned to Belize with international bronze medals around their necks. The success stems from a program that began two- and-a-half years before the games. Head Coach Andrew Aspinall was sent to Barbados on a FIFA coaches course. Upon their return, they started coaching Special Olympics. There were regional competitions and national training camps. From the pool of talented players, eight were selected to represent the country at the Special Olympics in Athens, Greece.
Global Ambassador for Special Olympics, Mrs. Kim Simplis-Barrow, welcomed the team upon their arrival. She read a poem to them commending their courage, determination, confidence and winning attitude. The team drew huge support and admiration while in Athens. They found themselves trailing often but never gave up - the comeback boys were led by top goal scorer Darrell Lambey. While they did not bring home the gold medal, they championed the ideals of Special Olympics: “Let me win. But if I cannot win let me be brave in the attempt.”

 

August


CCJ Denies Injunction on 9th Constitutional Amendment 
On August 16, the Caribbean Court of Justice (CCJ) made it clear that opponents of the 9th Constitutional Amendment were wrong when they claimed the law was ousting the jurisdiction of the courts.  The court sitting as a three-judge panel, was hearing an application for special leave to appeal to the CCJ, lodged by Michael Ashcroft’s British Caribbean Bank and Dean Boyce. 
In discussions during the hearing, all three Judges made it clear that whatever the language of the 9th Amendment, it can never oust the jurisdiction of the court.  Justice Hayton went as far as to say that if the amendment is unconstitutional now, putting it into the Constitution does not cure it’s unconstitutionality, it would still be unconstitutional and would be declared null and void if challenged.  Both Godfrey Smith, representing Dean Boyce, and Eamon Courtney, representing Ashcroft’s British Caribbean Bank, gave an undertaking to the court to file a challenge to the amendment within 14 days.
Among the things the two were asking for, was an injunction to prevent the National Assembly from passing the 9th Constitutional amendment.  Not only did the Court reject that application, the Court made it clear that neither the CCJ, nor any court for that matter should be interfering in the affairs of Parliament.


PUC Brokers interconnection between Telemedia and Speednet
Telemedia signed an interconnection agreement with Speednet on August 26. Executives of the competing companies met at the office of the Public Utilities Commission to sign the much debated interconnection agreement. The meeting was brief. The contract was passed across the table for executives on each side to sign and after doing so they stood up, shook hands and left the room without saying a word to the media. Though he did not get into the details of the agreement, John Avery, Chairman of the Public Utilities Commission, spoke on the spirit of the agreement. He said, “This agreement simply prescribes the terms and conditions under which the parties will operate the interconnection of their networks.”
Telemedia’s decision to agree to interconnect is a gesture of good faith to Speednet since there was no legally binding reason for them to do so. Smart was saying that they’ve acquired a new switch that will allow them to provide better services to their consumers. However, Speednet had its switches installed on BTL’s property and had no access to it. The agreement gives Speednet access to its equipment on Telemedia’s property. Speednet will move its switch off the compound. Therefore, when Speednet wishes to upgrade its network in the future they will not depend on the goodwill of their competitors.


Apprenticeship Program Hits Full Stride
Twenty young Apprentices were scheduled to graduate on June 9.  Areas that were apprenticed in were Welding, AC/Refrigeration, Auto-mechanic, Hospitality Management, Cooking, Secretarial, Electrical, Plumbing, and Hotel Maintenance. Of the 20, 18 were hired on the spot by their respective employers and as a result they began to work on June 13 in their respective fields. All 20 youths were enrolled at the ITVET for the evening sessions, which began in September to become more qualified and skilled in their respective areas.
The program shows great success academically as well. The pre-test result of December, 2010 resulted in a lowest Math score of 14 and the highest 74. In March of 2011, a second test was re-administered and the results showed the lowest score being 48 and the highest 96. A third test was re-administered in May of 2011 and the lowest score was 53 and the highest being 98.
On June 2, they were given a tour of the Norwegian Cruise Ship and had lunch with the crew of the ship. On June 8, they were given a tour of the Hol Chan Marine Reserve and the Shark Ray Alley where they swam with sharks and rays, and learnt about the reef eco-systems. The Second Intake of the Apprenticeship Programmecommenced in July. The first intake had a 90% success rate.   


Consultations on 9th Amendment
The first public consultation on the Belize Constitution (Ninth Amendment) Bill, 2011 was hosted by the Constitution and Foreign Affairs Committee on Wednesday, August 10th, at the Holy Redeemer Parish Hall. Hundreds of Belize City and Belize district residents made their way to the Parish Hall, wearing t-shirts and carrying placards to show their support for the government’s move to entrench utilities in the constitution so that they always remain in the possession of the people. The evening began with a presentation by the Solicitor General Cheryl Krusen, who explained the constitutional amendment and what it meant. Opponents misrepresented the Bill saying that it trampled on the power of the court and gives government the power to pass any law. The Sol Gen explained that the clause was merely a clarification of the Constitution and gives government no more power that it already has.


$49 Million Dollar Project Signed for Santa Elena/San Ignacio Bridge
The CDB-funded Fourth Road Project was launched on August 15. The CDB is providing a loan of US$24.7 million and grant funding of US$249,000 for the project, which will see the upgrading of existing roadway, the construction of a new road to create a by-pass and the construction of a two-lane bridge over the Macal river. The old Hawkesworth bridge has seen more than six decades of service and the low-level timber bridge, intended to be a temporary structure is still being used but is flooded annually. This new high level bridge and road loop will guarantee two lanes of flood-free traffic throughout the year. It will also divert traffic away from the downtown area and reduce congestion. The municipality of San Ignacio and Santa Elena is the second largest in the country after Belize City. 


New Regional Sanitary Landfill at Mile 24 Western Highway
On August 10, the Government of Belize updated the nation on the proposal to implement a four-year project to improve solid waste management practices in four municipalities: San Pedro, Ambergris Caye, Caye Caulker, Belize City and San Ignacio/Santa Elena. Project infrastructure investments include: closure and decommissioning of open dumpsites in Belize City atMile 3.5, San Ignacio/SantaElena,San Pedro, Ambergris Caye and Caye Caulker; the construction of waste transfer/recyclable reception facilities at the Belize City Mile 3.5 dumpsite, San Ignacio/Santa Elena dumpsite, San Pedro Ambergris Caye new location and Caye Caulker new location; construction of a New Regional Sanitary Landfill at Mile 24 on the Western Highway to receive municipal solid waste from the transfer stations and surrounding communities and the construction of the 3.3 km Access Road to the Landfill.
Bidding documents for the construction and operation of the infrastructure works were issued to the four prequalified firms and bids were submitted by September 28. Physical works at the Regional Sanitary Landfill site to prepare the first cell for the reception of solid waste are expected to start in January/February of 2012.


T.S. Harvey Causes Twister in Crooked Tree
On August 20, Tropical Storm Harvey passed over Southern Belize, near Dangriga Town, pretty much without incident. But while Dangriga was spared, other parts of the country received damages attributed to aspects of the storm. One area affected was Crooked Tree Village. Residents of Crooked Tree, while tuned in on the radio for updates on the storm, were blind-sided by a twister that formed over the lagoon at around 11 a.m. This twister did mass damage, but fortunately, there was no loss of life. Residents all suspected that it was a tornado, such as those formed in the Mid-Western United States. Chief Meteorological Officer, Dennis Gonguez, disproved that theory. Gonguez explained to the media that the twister was one of the smaller vortices that Harvey was composed of. This specific vortex descended via a downdraft and the rains that Crooked Tree was receiving. It then took root and passed over land, behaving like a tornado. He said that it was not a tornado.The foot print of the twister was large. Over a dozen family homes experienced structural damages or their mature cashew trees were uprooted or snapped at the stem. 225 trees were estimated to have been destroyed by the twister.
The loss in revenue is estimated at around $60,000+ annually. Area Representative for Belize Rural North, Hon. Edmund Castro, NEMO Minister, Hon. Melvin Hulse, and  the Red Cross made appearances to assist in providing immediate relief efforts. There were also unconfirmed reports of another twister formation in San Lazaro Village in Orange Walk District.


UB Swears in New President
On August 24, Dr. Cary F. Fraser, a historian of international relations, was sworn as the fourth President of the University of Belize. The ceremony was held at the Central Campus in Belmopan City. Dr. Fraser has written extensively on American foreign policy in the Caribbean and the wider world, the history and politics of race in the United States, the Caribbean, and the broader Atlantic World, and the contemporary international relations of the Middle East and the politics of Islam. His work has been published in Canada, the Caribbean, the UK and the United States. He has pursued a multi-faceted career as a high school teacher, a researcher on indigenous and other populations in the Mazaruni area of Guyana, and a project officer for the Caribbean Conference of Churches working in both Guyana and Suriname. He has also served as a Human Rights Observer for the O.A.S. in Haiti. Dr. Fraser comes to the University of Belize from Pennsylvania State University where he taught in the Departments of African, African-American Studies and History. He had also served as the Director of the Africana Research Center. Dr. Fraser was born in Guyana.


September

Historic Prime Minister Forum
On September 14, the National Institute of Culture and History gave Belizeans an opportunity to gain insight on all their Prime Minister’s views on Belize at 30. The Father of the Nation could not make it because of health issues but he gave his reflections via a video interview. He spoke about the movement towards independence. Once independence became a reality the objective was to educate citizens on the meaning of being an independent nation. After the presentation from Rt. Hon. Price, Rt. Hon. Sir Manuel Esquivel, Rt. Hon. Said Musa and Prime Minister Hon. Dean Barrow were asked about their thoughts on independence and their motivation to seek the highest office in the land. Sir Manuel said that while independence is a wonderful thing,  he was concerned that the structures were not in place for a nation to function properly. As for motivation to seek the office of the Prime Minister, Sir Manuel explained that he never had intentions to seek political office. However, he was concerned about the idea of having a single party independent Belize. The People’s United Party had won all elections since self-government and the opposition parties were not gaining any ground. It was under the late great Phillip S. W. Goldson that a conscious effort was made to recruit viable candidates to contest the ruling party. Sir Manuel said he had no aspirations to be Prime Minister but after leaders like Goldson gave way he took up the post as party leader and was fortunate to lead two winning teams. Hon. Said Musa was the Attorney General at the acquisition of independence and helped to draft the Belize Independence Constitution in 1981. He too said he had no motivation to be Prime Minister but was honoured to have the opportunity to serve Belize in that capacity. Hon. Prime Minister Barrow was at the University Of Miami School of Law the year we got independence. He was following the developments closely and was studying International Relations at the time. He said that Belize’s independence was long overdue but delayed by the Guatemalan Claim. His decision to get into politics as a member of the United Democratic Party was based on his family’s alignment with the party. He said he also had no desire to be Prime Minister. He said that he really became Leader of the Opposition by default because after a devastating defeat in the 1998 General elections he was the most senior of only three elected members from the UDP. He led a team that lost in 2003 and said that defeat drove him to double the effort at victory. Prime Minister Barrow led the UDP to office in a landslide victory in 2008.


Rt. Hon. George Price passed away
Belize’s first Prime Minister, George Cadle Price, died after injuries he sustained during a fall. Price was at his Pickstock Street home on September 14th when he fell and injured his head. He was rushed to the Belize Healthcare Partners where he underwent surgery to remove a blood clot he developed as a result of the fall and remained at the hospital in an induced coma up until 6:30a.m. on September 19th when he died. George price was 92 years old.
He first ran in electoral politics in 1944 at the municipal level. He would later win his first election in 1947 and served as the Mayor of Belize City from 1958 to 1962. Price was the leader of the People’s United Party from 1956 to 1996. He became First Minister on April 7th, 1961 and Premier on January 1st, 1964. Through Price, Belize attained independence on September 21st, 1981 becoming Belize’s First Prime Minister.

 

October

Thousands Visited Belmopan to Support Ninth Amendment
On Friday, October 21, thousands of Belizeans of various races, religions and socio-economic backgrounds journeyed to Belmopan to express their support for the Belize Constitution Ninth Amendment Bill. Opponents of the Bill pointed to the addition of subsection 9 to section 69 as their reason for contest. The language they had trouble with was “a law passed by the National Assembly to alter any of the provisions of the Constitutions in conformity with this section shall not be open to challenge in any court of law on any ground whatsoever.” In truth, subsection 9 is not an introduction of legislature but a clarification of our Constitution written upon the achievement of Independence. Nevertheless, in his attempt to achieve universal support for the Bill or close thereto, Prime Minister Barrow decided to remove the “offensive” language on the advice of the Constitution and Foreign affairs Committee. That led the Council of Churches to drop their protest and support the Bill. Others tried to raise concern on the part that says government may assume control of whatever it deems to be a public utility and charged that government could decide that your business is a public utility and take it away. That charge did not stick as supporters of the Bill pointed out that the Constitution already explains what a public utility is. They then launched a charge that government was trying to take away the power of the Court. This charge was argued mostly by executives of the Bar Association. Even their own legal expert, Peter Gerangelos, concluded that the Ninth Amendment would not be taking powers from the Court. In reality, the Bar Association was trying to give powers to the court, which it doesn’t have. On October 21 the Bill was read for the second and third times at the House and passed.
Vaughn Gill and Ricardo Castillo filed for an injunction at the Supreme Court asking Chief Justice, Kenneth Benjamin to interfere with the legislative process by ordering the Attorney General and Governor General not to sign the Ninth Amendment into law until a referendum is held on the issue. The Ashcroft Alliance went for British Q.C. Lord Peter Goldsmith, former Attorney General of England, to present arguments on behalf of the claimants on October 26. Solicitor General, Cheryl Krusen, represented the Attorney General and Governor General. On October 21, Chief Justice Benjamin rejected the application for injunction. That led to an unprecedented sequence of events. The alliance managed to get a single Justice of the Court of Appeals, Douglas Mendes, to agree to hold hearings throughout the weekend - on Saturday, October 22, Sunday, October 23 and 6 a.m. on Monday, October 24. The Senate was scheduled to meet on October 24 and Mendes handed down his ruling at approximately 9:30 a.m. that morning. He refused the application for injunction but grant a temporary injunction, until 4 p.m. on Tuesday, October 25, in order to give the claimants an opportunity to have their case heard before the full court. He said that their appeal had no real prospect for success. The full court convened at 11 a.m. that same morning. Justices Sosa, Morrison and Pollard presided and other business of the court was set aside. On Tuesday, Justice Sosa delivered the Court’s ruling. He said the request for an injunction “should be refused for reasons, which the court shall present in writing at a later date.” The Bill was delivered to the Governor General and signed into law as the Belize Constitution Eight Amendment, since the previously named Eight Amendment was withdrawn. 


UDP Presented Belize Citco Slate
On October 5, the UDP officially presented the 10 councilor candidates and the Mayoral Candidate who will be contesting the elections in Belize City. Those people who will be contesting are: for Mayor - Darrell Bradley; councilors include: newcomers Alifa Elrington-Hyde; Dr. Alain Gonzalez; Micahel Theus; Bernard Q. Pitts Jr.; along with current councillors Eric Chang; Dean Samuels; Roger Espejo; Kevin Singh; Deon Leslie and Phillip Willoughby. The team is a good mix of both serving councilors and newcomers and the Prime Minister, Hon. Dean Barrow, noted during the launch that the UDP has been able to attract professional, individuals including two attorneys-at-law and a doctor. He explained that outside of that, the team was a mix of professionals who have much to contribute to the council. They will be able to do their job of delivering to Belize City residents since they were also councilors ,who have experience in running the city’s affairs.
Bradley added that as a leader he employs his mantra of  integrity, vision and action in that role. The citizens, he said, were deserving of leaders they can trust and also a council that is approachable and accountable. Bradley noted that leaders must also have vision and an ability to work to implement their vision.


Johnny Briceno Ousted as PUP Leader
The People’s United Party leader buckled under pressure and on October 7th Johnny Briceno officially bowed out as leader of the PUP. Mark Espat was named interim leader. Old Guard of the party quickly grew impatient with Briceno. Briceno’s leadership finally toppled however, when he came under scrutiny becaue of a series of public blunders he committed. The Wikileaks cables emerged where it was alleged that he took a 3-million-dollar bribe and he was unable to prove otherwise. Then he came up with two very inappropriate speeches both on Independence Day and on the occasion of the public funeral of George Price. He then publicly exposed the corruption of his own party and challenged those who made millions over the 10 years when the party was in government to bring back money to the PUP. And that was the end of Briceno as leader.


November


Hon. Carlos Perdomo Steps Down - 3 Way race for Caribbean Shores
In a letter dated November 2, Hon. Carlos Perdomo, Area Representative for Caribbean Shores announced to the United Democratic Party that he would not be pursuing office in the next General Elections. His reasons for leaving electoral politics centered on his “personal physical condition and the grave concern for the health conditions of (his) dear spouse.”
 The United Democratic Party later announced that it would hold a convention to select a Standard Bearer for the Caribbean Shores constituency on December 4. After that announcement, four candidates expressed interest in running. The candidates were Ann Marie Williams, Chandra Nisbet-Cansino, Michael Singh and Santiago ‘Santi’ Castillo. Shortly after the campaign started on the ground, Singh decided that he would not contest the convention and offered his support to Nisbet-Cansino. With Singh stepping aside, it left three contenders. After the polls closed the final vote count was: Santi Castillo, 907 votes, Chandra Nisbet-Cansino 616 votes and Ann-Marie Williams 137 votes. There were 1,608 total voters. The PUP convention had 1189 total voters.


PM Holds Economic Forum to “Turn the Corner”
On November 23, a forum was held at Old Belize in which the public and private sector joined forces to develop national economic stimulants.
The public sector was represented by the Prime Minister of Belize, the Financial Secretary, Central Bank Governor, CEO in Ministry of Economic Development, Comptroller of the Customs Department, Commissioner of General Sales Tax Department, Commissioner of Income Tax Department and Executive Director of BELTRAIDE. The private sector was well represented. That representation included individuals from the energy, agricultural and tourism sectors, financial institutions, wholesalers, infrastructural development companies and others. Prime Minister Barrow delivered the keynote address at the opening of the forum. He said that the forum is as a result of several meetings with business owners on necessary steps for building a sustainable economy. In those meetings, representatives of the business sector identified several factors that negatively affect the economy. Those include GST and customs, crime, interest rates, road infrastructure, statistics and policy information sharing and the operation of development Concessions Regime. Prime Minister Barrow outlined initiatives that the government has and will take to fix the problems identified by the business community. 
During the forum, private sector representatives spoke openly with government officials. Dr. Carla Barnett facilitated the exercise and several recommendations are expected as result of the forum.


$5.5 Million for Electricity Expansion
On November 22nd, the European Union, the Government of Belize and the Belize Electricity Limited entered into an agreement which will see the expansion of BEL’s national grid to include 27 communities across the country. The project is being financed 75% through the African, Caribbean and Pacific Group of Countries (ACP) – EU Energy Facility II Grant Funds and 25% counterpart contribution from GOB.    Signatories to the contract were EU Country Representative in Belize, Cosimo Lamberti Fossati, and BEL’s Chief Executive Officer, Jeffrey Locke.  Also present at the signing was CEO in the Ministry of Economic Development, Yvonne Hyde, who represented the Government of Belize. 
Under the agreement, the EU will ensure that the project is implemented in accordance with EU guidelines, based on fairness and transparency. Communities that will benefit from the project include:  Steadfast, Belize City’s Belama Phase 4, Belmopan’s Salvapan and Maya Mopan, Dangriga’sWagirale and Rivas Estate, Independence’s New Site and Noralez Extension, Benque Viejo Town, the villages of Cotton Tree, Valley of Peace, Ontario, Hattieville, Rockstone Pond, Soccutz, San Lazaro, Guinea Grass, Paraiso, San Narciso, Patchakan, Carmelita, Libertad, Hope Creek, Sarawee, Hopkins, San Roman Village, Seine Bight and Bella Vista.
The project will cost a total of $5.5 million.

Government’sBoost Program Expands to River Valley and Toledo
On November 2, hundreds of Belizeans from the River Valley travelled to Sandhill to register for government’s Conditional Cash Transfer program. The same could be said for residents of the Toledo District whose registration event was held simultaneously with the event in Sandhill. The program was introduced in Prime Minister Barrow’s budget in 2010. It is based on a contract between the Government of Belize and disadvantaged families. The government gives cash to parents and in exchange they must ensure that their children are immunized, attend school regularly and access health and family education.
Upon introduction, $4 million was earmarked for the program. It took a while to get off the ground because it required complex logistic work. However, as of November 2011 there were more than 4,300 families receiving assistance monthly under the program. The program may receive additional funding from the World Bank, who had indicated its interest in the program.


December


BTL  Profits Up, Costs Down
Belize Telemedia Limited held its 5th Annual General Meeting on December 15th at the Princess Hotel and Casino. It was a good day for the company and its shareholders as the company announced that it had increased its earnings and cut down costs. The company also made presentations that showed expansion in customer services.
The director’s report stated that the net income in the fiscal year ending March 31, 2011 increased by 38% to $31.3 million from $22.7 million recorded in the previous year. The figures show that the company achieved a 12% return on equity, which is an increase of 2% over the previous year. While the profits were up and share earnings were up, the company reported that expenses were down. Net financial costs decreased by $1.9 million. This was as a result of BTL not paying interest costs for a US$22.5 million dollar loan which the previous board borrowed from Belize Bank. In the legal arena, the company also filed a claim of BZ$21 million against the former Board of Directors of BTL for wrongful acts in connection with the sale of BTL’s subsidiary, Great Belize Productions Limited.
Notably the company invested in 17 new sites across the country, expanding coverage. BTL was acquired by the Government of Belize on August 25th, 2009. At the time it held 94.5% of the shares of the company. In October 2010, 44.5% of shares in the company were offered for sale to the public. 606 people opted to purchase shares. At the closure of the sale on March 31, 2011, the Government owned 71.4% of the shares of the company.


BEL Applies to PUC for Lower Rates
The Public Utilities Commission (PUC) held a press conference on December 2, to announce that the Belize Electricity Limited (BEL) had made a formal submission for a Full Tariff Review Proceeding (FTRP) for the period July 1, 2012 to June 30, 2016.
Leroy Almendarez, Director of Administration and Tariffs at PUC, explained that BEL was proposing a 3.4% rate reduction. During the FTRP, PUC will review and set electricity rates, tariffs as well as fees and other charges. A public meeting was held on December 21 at the Princess Hotel. At that time Belizeans were free to share their views on the issue. Individuals who wish not to speak publicly may express their views in writing and submit it to the PUC. The PUC will then make a preliminary decision. If the company has objections against PUC’s decision, an independent expert will be hired to review the proposed Schedules and Tariffs. After that expert opinion is released, consumers will have 15 days to forward comments to the PUC. The commission will then make its Final Decision.
According to a press release from the company, “BEL’s request to lower the Mean Electricity Rate is being made possible by the Company’s improvements in both its operational performance and financial management.” It goes on to say that new management has emphasized cutting wasteful spending while maintaining reliable service. Furthermore, “Since July 2011, BEL’s cash flow position improved and the Company has not had to make any further request to the Government of Belize for assistance in the form of electricity pre-payments.” 


Extortion attempt on Rosendo Urbina’s family
His Excellency Rosendo Urbina left the country along with his family following extortion attempts on his son Rosendo Jr. Rosendo Urbina Jr. and his wife were leaving their residence at the Honey Camp Lagoon area, when a group of at least five armed men pounced on them. The men wore camouflage uniforms and masks. Whilst they were holding the couple at gunpoint, they asked a series of questions. They requested Urbina’s cell phone number and proceeded to search the premises of the watchman. The men requested an amount of money and took a vehicle which was later recovered on a feeder road in the area. After the assailants left, Rosendo made his way back and immediately informed his father about the ordeal. The Police was then contacted. 
Over the period of a few hours, the assailants made many phone calls to the family asking them for money. It is for this reason that the Urbina family decided to leave the country until the matter was resolved. Police were able to trace one number which was purchased a few days before the hold up. However the agent that sold the SIM card did not take information to identify the owner; therefore, the number was not registered. Police said that such incidents point to the absolute need to have phone numbers registered. The Urbina family placed forth a 50 thousand dollar reward to anyone who had information leading to the conviction of those responsible for the crime.
Rosendo Urbina Sr. returned to the country shortly after and met with UDP Party Leader, Hon. Dean Barrow, and the Deputy Party Leader, Hon. Gaspar Vega.  Urbina was presented with the possibility of stepping down should he believe that his family’s life may be in danger, and the meeting ended with the decision that he would remain in the political race.


PM Barrow Says No Tax Increases for 2012
The IMF released its report on Belize in December.  Among its many recommendations, the IMF wants the Government of Belize to raise the General Sale Tax (GST) from 12.5 to 15%. It also wants government to withdraw its tax concessions on basic food items and medical supplies. Prime Minister Barrow was asked about those recommendations on December 16. He outright rejected them. The mere thought that the IMF wants the government to discontinue its food cost relief measures caused him to become visibly upset. In regards to increasing GST, he said, “The IMF can cry until the cows come home. Absolutely not, I reject that out of hand.” PM Barrow said the IMF can only force Belize to increase tax if we need to borrow money from them and we “absolutely do not need to do any such thing.” He concluded by saying, “The IMF can go fly a kite!”


Special Envoy Boosts Christmas Spirit in Underprivileged Children
On December 3, Special Envoy for Women and Children, Mrs. Kim Simplis Barrow, hosted her 2nd Annual Spirit of Christmas Concert at the Bliss Centre. Approximately 275 invited guests attended the concert, including residents from five children’s home from across Belize, as well as the Stella Maris School, St. Luke’s Choir and children from the Belize Cancer Society.
Mrs. Simplis Barrow surprised the crowd when she walked on stage to welcome the children to the concert and wish them a fun morning. She also used the opportunity to thank everyone for their support and well-wishes since her cancer diagnosis. Mrs. Barrow delivered a special message to the children afflicted with cancer in the audience, telling them that they will “fight the good fight together and in the end they will kiss cancer goodbye.”
At the end of the two-hour long entertaining show, each child received a small gift and a snacks-.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

-1 1 0 40 1/5/2012 06:00:00 62 0/0/0000 00:00:00 0 0 0/0/0000 00:00:00 1/5/2012 06:00:00 0/0/0000 00:00:00 show_title= link_titles= show_intro= show_section= link_section= show_category= link_category= show_vote= show_author= show_create_date= show_modify_date= show_pdf_icon= show_print_icon= show_email_icon= language= keyref= readmore= 1 0 2 0 748 robots= author= 4249 Mensaje de Año Nuevo 2012 del Primer Ministro Hon. Dean O. Barrow mensaje-de-ano-nuevo-2012-del-primer-ministro-hon-dean-o-barrow-

Ningún saldo en ninguno de los incrementos anuales por medio el cual medimos el pasar del tiempo, está realmente completo sin sufrimientos y tribulaciones.  Es por ello que como seres humanos, sociedades, y naciones, siempre damos la bienvenida al año nuevo con expectativas y alegría. Es una oportunidad para recuperarse de la adversidad de los doce meses anteriores, para obrar mejor y ser mejor. El eterno ritual de despedir el viejo y dar la bienvenida al nuevo, es por lo tanto emblemático de la eterna capacidad de esperanza y renovación. Y esto, a cambio, es parte del legado de Dios a la raza humana; a todas las criaturas racionales que creen en El.  

Aunque el año pasado, como todos, no estuvo sin dificultades, estas fueron pequeñas. De hecho, en vista de la situación global; dado los continuos problemas fiscales, de deudas y desempleo de los Estados Unidos; dada la crisis absoluta en la que Europa se ve sumida; nuestro país hizo bien económicamente. Y un vistazo a los números sirve para confirmar que, en todas las circunstancias, hay un logro del cual agradecidos estamos.

El Instituto de Estadísticas de Belice, informa que los primeros nueve meses del año, nuestra economía creció  un dos punto siete por ciento (2.7%), comparado con el uno punto ocho por ciento (1.8%) para el mismo período en el dos mil diez. El crecimiento en el último trimestre del año es tradicionalmente el más robusto, así que estamos bien encaminados a, tal y como lo predije en el Día de la Independencia, exceder el tres por ciento (3%) del producto interno nacional en el dos mil once. Esto es un gran logro, y estará casi un punto porcentual por encima del crecimiento de dos punto cuatro por ciento (2.4%) del año pasado.

Cuando examinamos los sectores particulares que son los más responsables por este panorama de avance económico, el futuro es aún más prometedor.  Hasta septiembre fue el Sector Comercial de mayoreo y menudeo que llevaba la delantera, registrando un aumento del siete punto siete por ciento (7.7%). Tan solo la Zona Libre de Corozal fue responsable por una recuperación comercial de veinte y tres por ciento (23%), en ventas anuales.  A lo largo de los tres trimestres, Hoteles  y Restaurantes crecieron un dos punto uno por ciento (2.1%), como resultado del  aumento de las llegadas turísticas en un tres punto tres por ciento (3.3%); Transporte y Comunicaciones creció un dos punto cinco por ciento (2.5%). La construcción también tuvo un siete punto cuatro por ciento de mejoría (7.4%). Pero fue la industria de la Pesca que realmente estuvo a la cabeza con un aumento del catorce punto cinco por ciento(14.5%). Y, mientras la producción de azúcar cayó en general, las proporciones, la calidad y los precios mejoraron, proveyendo una  posición ideal para una exitosa y abundante zafra. Finalmente, la inflación permaneció baja, solo con dos puntos porcentuales.

Es en  base a todo lo antedicho que puedo acertar que fuimos bendecidos en el dos mil once. Fácilmente sobrepasamos al dos mil diez y, si se compara con el dos mil nueve, el logro es aun más notable, ya que, recordemos, en ese año hubo una contracción y fue cuando las olas de la recesión mundial amenazaban con inundarnos por completo.

El éxito económico del dos mil once se debe a  que los aumentos en entradas por exportación, incluyendo en particular las provenientes del petróleo, hicieron posible que el Gobierno diera un gigantesco paso hacia la consolidación de su agenda social. Fueron implementados proyectos de infra-estructura para crear empleos; fueron expandidas las oportunidades educativas y económicas para aquellos necesitados de una segunda  oportunidad; y con el viento en popa, a pasos agigantados avanzamos con los préstamos y concesiones para las mejoras de viviendas, las cestas básicas para las personas de bajos ingresos, y los programas  de transferencia monetaria también para los más necesitados.

La flor de nuestra democracia también retoño.  Mantuvimos nuestro compromiso de ser un gobierno accesible, transparente y responsable; y continuamos nuestra marcha hacia el verdadero nacionalismo mediante la estipulación constitucional de ser dueños de los servicios esenciales.

Quizá  lo más notable de todo, es que desde septiembre, cuando forjamos un cese de hostilidades entre las pandillas de la ciudad de Belice, hemos tenido éxito en reducir la incidencia de asesinatos en este país. La significativa reducción en la tasa de homicidios para los últimos cuatro meses del dos mil once, comparados con el dos mil diez, representa un gran logro.  Y llega en el punto justo y preciso, cuando muchos comenzaban a sentir que no habría rescate de tal abismo.
Pero el verdadero propósito de este Mensaje, es mirar hacia adelante; asegurar a todos que la promesa inherente y la oportunidad del Año Nuevo es una verdadera realidad. Los esfuerzos se redoblarán, los compromisos se expandirán, y los logros serán más intensos.

En el dos mil doce, por ejemplo, el empuje en las infra-estructuras- y los empleos que conlleva- alcanzará nuevas metas. En el sur, la carretera a Jalacté, en el norte, la carretera de Blue Creek, en el oeste, el Cruce del Rio Macal, en la ciudad de Belice, los proyectos  de drenaje y de calles; todos estarán en plena acción. El nuevo estadio de Marion Jones ya saldrá de la fase de fundación, y el Nuevo Centro Cívico saldrá de las ruinas. Se ha firmado el contrato para el diseño y la construcción del ‘Proyecto de Manejo de Desperdicios Sólidos’; y se invertirán 14 (catorce) millones de dólares entre enero y julio en Caye Caulker, San Pedro, San Ignacio y Ciudad Belice. El Banco Mundial nos asegura que, el ya demorado proyecto de rehabilitación y embellecimiento para los municipios en los distritos, comenzará en abril.

Una contribución monetaria para las madres trabajadoras, a nivel nacional, se unirá a los programas de aprendices, la cesta básica, y BOOST. Y los centros de ayuda para  los vecindarios necesitados de la ciudad de Belice asistirán con el desarrollo comunitario, recuperación social, y la prevención de violencia.

Millones de dólares continuarán financiando las mejoras y reparaciones de viviendas en todo el país; y cada topógrafo registrado en este país ha sido contratado para trabajar en la sub -división de cuatro mil setecientos nueve acres identificados por el Ministerio de Terrenos para ser asignados como lotes de viviendas para aquellos que no tienen ni han sido dueños.

Nuestra asistencia hacia los pobres y los de clase media continúa. Ellos, de hecho todos los Beliceños, serán asistidos por la reducción en los precios de electricidad que prometí en Septiembre y que ahora se hace realidad. BEL, al fin del pueblo y gobierno, ya ha aceptado, a través de sus gestas a la Comisión de Utilidades Públicas, que los precios de la electricidad tienen que reducirse. Y la Comisión pueda que también reduzca aún más lo que habría propuesto BEL. La decisión final será el 31 de enero, y las nuevas tarifas reducidas deben, bajo la ley actual, tomar efecto unos cuantos meses después. Pero somos un gobierno que estamos apurados en hacer cosas buenas. Y el alivio al consumidor, la reducción en el costo de la vida, el alivio a los comercios, y la industria y la agricultura, no pueden esperar. Por lo tanto, el Gobierno enmendará la ley para implementar desde el mismo día siguiente, el primero de Febrero, dos mil doce, esta histórica reducción en lo que los Beliceños pagan por electricidad.

Pero todavía hay más que estamos ofreciendo para alegrar esta temporada.  Al contrario del dos mil doce, nuestra visión de adelanto, oportunidad e igualdad no es algo nuevo. Pero los frescos comienzos que siempre toman lugar el primero de enero, proveen una apropiada oportunidad para que enfaticemos nuestro credo: que la llama de justicia social de este gobierno nunca se apagará; que arderá aún más en los próximos doce meses. Y nuestra preocupación por los marginados, por aquellos con sueldos fijos, bajos ingresos o sin ingresos, ha causado que tengamos otra nueva idea para el alivio y asistencia de año nuevo. Por lo tanto, hoy anuncio que el Gobierno comprará todas las hipotecas de cincuenta mil dólares y menos, del Seguro Social de Belice. Estas llegan a un total de setecientas ochenta y cuentan con un total de valor agregado de diez y siete millones de dólares. Poco después el Gobierno anulará estas hipotecas, cancelando todas las obligaciones de préstamo de las cabezas de familia y dejando ese dinero a su disposición para invertirlo en la economía y generar más actividad.

La intención de ayudar no solo a individuos sino a los comercios en esta forma, me trae al último punto que deseo hacer. En todo lo que hacemos, el Gobierno no se puede olvidar del sector privado. Se necesita una participación equitativa, e hicimos un buen comienzo al final del dos mil once. Esto debe consolidarse en este año venidero. Por lo tanto, el gobierno entre otras cosas, está nombrando un Facilitador de Desarrollo Comercial en la Oficina del Primer Ministro para supervisar dicha nueva relación.

Finalizo haciendo referencia una vez más al renacimiento del optimismo que es la provincia especial de las celebraciones de año nuevo. A través del mundo, esta es una ocasión para re-encender la inspiración. Es el re-inicio anual de la búsqueda del progreso humano, de la misión alquimista de convertir hasta el cobre en oro. En el caso de Belice, nuestra resolución es re-dedicar y re-consagrar la cruzada por el cual construimos una nación brillante, justa y equitativa. Una que será la envidia de y el modelo para región y el mundo.

Feliz año Nuevo a todos, y que Dios bendiga a Belice.

-1 1 0 40 1/5/2012 06:00:00 62 0/0/0000 00:00:00 0 0 0/0/0000 00:00:00 1/5/2012 06:00:00 0/0/0000 00:00:00 show_title= link_titles= show_intro= show_section= link_section= show_category= link_category= show_vote= show_author= show_create_date= show_modify_date= show_pdf_icon= show_print_icon= show_email_icon= language= keyref= readmore= 1 0 1 0 89 robots= author= 4250 Strong Start to PM’s National Tour Hon. Dean Barrow meets Corozal Southeast residents strong-start-to-pms-national-tour-hon-dean-barrow-meets-corozal-southeast-residents

Hon.Prime Minister Hon. Dean Barrow commenced his official national tour on Sunday, January 8, in the villages of Chunox and Caledonia in the Corozal District. Both villages are located in the Corozal Southeast Division, which has been a PUP stronghold ever since the start of electoral politics in Belize.


Huge crowds waited at the entrance of Chunox and Caledonia Village to escort Prime Minister Barrow to the venue of an appreciation rally. The reception was like that of the great Julius Caesar upon entering Rome after many victories. Indeed for many in the village, Prime Minister Barrow is a hero and if he continues leading the strong social justice agenda that his government has thus far, he may forever be regarded as the Saviour of the Jewel. If the reception was any indication of Belizean sentiments countrywide, then Prime Minister Barrow and the United Democratic Party is poised for an even greater victory than that of 2008.

PM Barrow was joined by other members of Cabinet as well as UDP Standard Bearers of the northern districts. Residents held up signs saying “Thank you, Prime Minister Barrow.” The signs highlighted different programs that were immediately benefiting residents of the village. Those include education subsidies, new school buildings, establishment of a police station, road rehabilitation, saving the sugar industry, and relief through several social programs.

Based on conversations with residents in the crowd, there are two main reasons for the likelihood that Corozal Southeast will be counted as a UDP seat in the House of Representatives for the first time. One is the fact that this government has rehabilitated and will pave roads throughout the area that the People’s United Party have promised to pave for decades. The second thing that stands out to Southeast residents is the fact that government rescued the sugar industry. Even in Chunox, which is considered to be a fishing village, residents continue to praise the government for their intervention that saved and fortified the economic foundation of the North. Corozal Southeast had a PUP Area Representative in Florencio Marin Sr., who was an extremely powerful member of Cabinet and nothing was done to improve the lives of residents in that area.

During the rallies, Servando Samos endorsed Raul Rosado and asked residents to support his candidacy for Area Representative of Corozal Southeast. Samos was the previous UDP Standard Bearer and a true champion for Corozal Southeast. He promised to work as hard for Raul Rosado as he did for himself because “it is important that we be united in the UDP if we are to bring improvement to the people of Southeast.” Samos said that residents of Corozal Southeast have seen the good that this government has done for them even without a UDP Area Representative and “they know that it is far more than the PUP has done in over 45 years.” Rosado asked the residents to join him in his efforts to bring development to Corozal Southeast. He received endorsements from 7 village chairmen of 9 in the division.

Rosado also received endorsements from executives of the United Democratic Party. Party Chairman, Hon. Patrick Faber, pledged his full support to Raul Rosado. He informed residents that it was not only in Corozal Southeast that Belizeans have been benefitting from government’s programs. All across the country, people are being relieved of financial burdens and they are receiving opportunities to improve their standard of living. He informed them that students of the Corozal District will receive their $300 subsidy automatically upon graduating from primary school. Just as it is in Stann Creek and Toledo, Corozal students will no longer need to apply for the subsidy. It is a poverty alleviating effort by the Government of Belize.

Prime Minister Barrow thanked the residents for their extremely warm reception. Residents smiled as PM Barrow greeted them in Spanish. They were shocked and amazed when he continued his speech in the language. One lady said, “He is as eloquent in Spanish as he is in English… even more so.” PM chose not to focus on what the Marins haven’t done but on what this government has. In less than four years, this government has introduced and implemented social programs that were never thought possible in Belize. He said that is because the United Democratic Party is the true party of social justice. He spoke about the economic turmoil around the region and the world. Despite the fact that Belize is feeling the effects of the relapse of the global crisis, our economy grew by 3 percent. He invited residents of Corozal Southeast to be a part of history because there is no doubt that for the first time the United Democratic Party will win consecutive General Elections. Corozal Southeast will most likely be among the numbers called for the UDP when the elections are held and it will also be for the first time that the division goes red.

PM Barrow closed by calling on residents to be ready when election is called. -1 6 0 54 1/12/2012 06:00:00 62 Shane D. Williams 0/0/0000 00:00:00 0 0 0/0/0000 00:00:00 1/12/2012 06:00:00 0/0/0000 00:00:00 show_title= link_titles= show_intro= show_section= link_section= show_category= link_category= show_vote= show_author= show_create_date= show_modify_date= show_pdf_icon= show_print_icon= show_email_icon= language= keyref= readmore= 1 0 1 0 2541 robots= author= 4251 SSB Board suspends CEO Merlene Bailey-Martinez ssb-board-suspends-ceo-merlene-bailey-martinez

MerleneMerlene Bailey-Martinez and the Internal Auditor of the Social Security Board have been put on administrative leave for two weeks pending an investigation at the institution. The move came late on Wednesday evening following a meeting of the Board of Directors of the SSB.


That meeting was prompted as a result of allegations, which suggested that there was insider trading taking place at the institution relating to government’s write-off program of loans at the SSB. That program will see loans, which the Social Security Board holds for under 50 thousand dollars, written off. According to reports, there were staff members of the SSB, who held loans with the board but which were over the write -off amount. In order to fit into the category, they secured loans elsewhere to bring down their principal to be able to benefit from the program.

As of September 30th, 2011 there were 40 staff members of the Social Security Board, who held loans with the institution that were above 50 thousand dollars. Speaking with the board’s Chairman, Lois Young, she explained that the CEO and the auditor have been put on administrative leave initially for two weeks or more until an independent investigation is held into the transactions. The investigation she said will be done by an external body or entity. Persons to be interviewed include the officers that were placed on leave. Young would not say why the officers were suspended or how many staff members participated in the lowering of their mortgages in order to benefit from the write-off program. The Chairman said that the investigation will come up with that figure. She noted that during the investigation the aim is to be fair to everyone involved.

When asked if the investigation will affect the write-off process, she said that it should not, since they are separate issues and the process of investigation is an internal matter for the SSB.

In his New Year’s Day message the Prime Minister, Hon. Dean Barrow announced that the government would be writing off loans for persons who hold mortgages with the Social Security Board that were 50 thousand dollars and below.

Since the announcement, hundreds of Belizeans have expressed their great appreciation for the PM’s gesture. -1 6 0 53 1/12/2012 06:00:00 62 0/0/0000 00:00:00 0 0 0/0/0000 00:00:00 1/12/2012 06:00:00 0/0/0000 00:00:00 show_title= link_titles= show_intro= show_section= link_section= show_category= link_category= show_vote= show_author= show_create_date= show_modify_date= show_pdf_icon= show_print_icon= show_email_icon= language= keyref= readmore= 1 0 2 0 2917 robots= author= 4252 $75,000 weekly not enough for BML! 75000-weekly-not-enough-for-bml

BMLOn Tuesday, January 10, workers of Belize Maintenance Limited parked trucks filled with garbage in front of City Hall and launched an illegal protest. They did not apply for permission to protest but were prompted by their boss’s announcement that they would all be fired because the Belize City Council had terminated their contract. The news flew across the city quickly and allowed many residents to breathe a sigh of relief as the collective thought was “it’s about time”. However, that was not the case. It was only a verbal contract that was terminated. The contract was for the clearing of garbage “hot spots” or public dumpsites.


The council had promised to pay BML an additional $5,000 a week extra to clear hotspots. According to sources in the council, though BML’s owner claims that it was an abrupt termination, an agreement was made last year with the understanding that the service would be discontinued at the end of the year. The year has ended and it should have come as no surprise to BML. However, it was not surprising that such a protest was prompted because it is election season. Though BML’s owner claims that he did not send them out there, they were still allowed to use the company’s truck and fuel. After they conducted the demonstration, he informed them that they would not be fired.

Residents are tired of this private company that is responsible for the upkeep and waste disposal in our city. The outright termination of the contracts is years overdue. The Ministry of Works and CYDP are doing most of BML’s job. This company receives millions of dollars of taxpayers’ money and residents continue to call talk shows complaining about garbage and hotspots. Obviously, they are overpaid and underperforming. In fact, the company has not been able to keep up with its commitment of clearing hotspots that the City Council itself has designed a garbage collection shift that runs from 5 in the evening to midnight everyday. 

Because of these reasons, residents continue to call on the council to find a way to terminate the contract of BML.Employees of this company need not be concerned about their job because they will then be hired by the council and treated in a more dignified manner. Hopefully, Attorney-at-Law Darrel Bradley, as the Mayor of Belize City, will find an ouster clause in the contract and free the city of such financial bondage.

-1 6 0 53 1/12/2012 06:00:00 64 Shane D. Williams 0/0/0000 00:00:00 0 0 0/0/0000 00:00:00 1/12/2012 06:00:00 0/0/0000 00:00:00 show_title= link_titles= show_intro= show_section= link_section= show_category= link_category= show_vote= show_author= show_create_date= show_modify_date= show_pdf_icon= show_print_icon= show_email_icon= language= keyref= readmore= 1 0 1 0 2465 robots= author= 4253 Keeping the Promise keeping-the-promise

Politicians and political parties that are running for election usually lay out their promises in a manifesto that outlines what they intend to achieve.  When these same politicians or parties run for re-election their opponents often use this manifesto to prove that the incumbent has failed to achieve what was promised.  When, however, the politician or party has achieved much of what was promised the Opposition has to scrape the bottom of their barrel of dirty tricks in their campaign to grab the prize of political victory.  This is especially so when the Opposition is still controlled by the same people whose abysmal record is recent enough to be remembered by most voters. 

This is the situation that the PUP now finds itself in.  The main gun in its election arsenal has always been money and its history of vote-buying goes back at least 40 years although it only got into high gear in the late 1990s when Lord Michael became a significant PUP political financier.  The PUP’s recent leadership upheaval indicates that it has been positioning itself to retain this financial support. The PUP remains committed to the strategies it knows, especially straight forward vote-buying and packing electoral rolls.  However, these tactics are not only illegal but generally are not approved of by most Belizeans.  The PUP, seeking to deflect criticism of its own methods, is orchestrating a campaign accusing the UDP of the very strategies it plans to use.  Common sense tells us that anyone wanting to illegally pack the electoral lists of a particular division would not register voters at an address that they had not previously cleared with the owner.  That is why the claim that someone tried to illegally register two voters at an address in the Orange Walk Central division being defended by John Briceno is laughable.  Either the whole scenario was set up by Johhny himself or the voters made an honest mistake in giving their address.  The more serious allegation of buying votes can be disposed of quite easily.  The UDP ran on a manifesto that promised to make life better for ordinary Belizeans and also to end officially sanctioned corruption.  Over the past almost four years, the UDP has been and continues to do just that.  Let’s name a few of the accomplishments: winning back the confidence of international agencies to make loans and grants possible again; maintaining positive economic growth; improving public transportation system that had almost been destroyed; continuing growth in the tourism sector; advancing agricultural production and finalising export of beef; improving the health system including the public provision of dialysis; making significant strides in streamlining education and providing opportunities for those who need to get back into the system;  the re-establishing the Development Finance Corporation from the brink of collapse; finding ways to take the unrecoverable debts foisted on Social Security by various PUP schemes off their books (including the mortgage relief recently given to deserving mortgage holders); supporting the neediest members of our society through the Pantry program and the Conditional Cash Transfer (Boost) program and a special Christmas program; re-introducing the apprenticeship program; introducing programs to direct young people into a positive life path through CYDP and Restore Belize; reducing utility bills through the nationalisation of  BTL and BEL.  Whenever instances of possible corruption have surfaced, the UDP has immediately acted to investigate allegations and take remedial action including holding wrongdoers to account.           

These benefits are not directed to members or supporters of any particular political party and lift up all Belizeans.  They have been achieved despite the appalling mess left behind by the PUP and the worst global recession in almost a century.  These are not attempts to “buy” votes but rather a commitment to manifesto promises.  It would be unreasonable to expect a government to stop fulfilling its manifesto promises just because an election may be held soon.  It is possible that the pace of some programs is accelerated to ensure that they are actually fulfilled before elections.   Expect massive attempts to buy votes from the PUP, whose history is one of breaking campaign promises.  The UDP can run on its record of fulfilling its manifesto promises and its assurance that it will continue the good work.

-1 10 0 56 1/12/2012 06:00:00 62 0/0/0000 00:00:00 0 0 0/0/0000 00:00:00 1/12/2012 06:00:00 0/0/0000 00:00:00 show_title= link_titles= show_intro= show_section= link_section= show_category= link_category= show_vote= show_author= show_create_date= show_modify_date= show_pdf_icon= show_print_icon= show_email_icon= language= keyref= readmore= 1 0 1 0 1086 robots= author= 4254 Briceno charges upgraded to murder briceno-charges-upgraded-to-murder

DateRenan Briceno Jr., 32, who was remanded to prison on a charge of attempted murder in connection with the New Year’s Eve shooting at Palm Island Night club saw his charge upgraded to murder since 19-year-old Dale Tillett succumbed to injuries on Thursday January 5.

On Tuesday January 3rd, three days after the shooting incident, Briceno, appeared in Court #2 where he was charged with the December 31 shooting of Dale Tillett.  He was additionally charged with dangerous harm and use of deadly means of harm upon Brandon Tillett, who was shot in the foot during the incident.

In court, the magistrate informed him that the charge of murder is an indictable offense, which will be dealt with in trial at the Supreme Court if at the conclusion of a Preliminary Inquiry there is sufficient evidence to commit the matter to trial. He was further remanded to prison until February 16.   In court, only one of Briceno’ s attorney, Dickie Bradley was present when he was read the charge of murder.

After the arraignment, Briceno was escorted back to Hattieville Prison by CIB personnels.

On December 31, at about 4:00 a.m., after the closing of the Palm Island Night Club, there was a shooting incident in which there was an exchange of fire where Dale Tillett, 19 and Brandon Tillett were both shot. -1 1 0 39 1/12/2012 06:00:00 62 0/0/0000 00:00:00 0 0 0/0/0000 00:00:00 1/12/2012 06:00:00 0/0/0000 00:00:00 show_title= link_titles= show_intro= show_section= link_section= show_category= link_category= show_vote= show_author= show_create_date= show_modify_date= show_pdf_icon= show_print_icon= show_email_icon= language= keyref= readmore= 1 0 10 0 800 robots= author= 4255 Three women convicted of drug trafficking three-women-convicted-of-drug-trafficking

Three women appeared in Belize City Magistrate’s Court on Friday January 6th where they were convicted of drug trafficking. The women appeared before Senior Magistrate, Sharon Frazer, who was very lenient with the women and gave them a suspended sentence while two of them had to pay the maximum fine of $10,000.


The case was initially against a group of 5 people, four women and a man. They were busted in February 2010 at #6748 Raccoon Street Extension in possession of 238 grams of marijuana.Those arrested at the time were Delia Williams, a School Warden and resident of #6748 Raccoon Street; 20-year-old Ashley Avilez, of the same address; and 18-year-old Michelle Reynard, Rosemin Felix, 25; and 20-year-old Darrin Morgan.

At about 3:45p.m.on February 22, 2010, two police officers of the GSU unit along with others visited the home of Delia Williams where they found a container hidden in a bundle of garbage near the back door of the house.  Present at the time were the five accused people, but at the end of the trial Senior Magistrate Sharon Frazer concluded that in her view, Felix and Morgan were not guilty of the charge but in the case of Williams, Avilez and Reynard, who lived at the house where the weed was found, she believed that they had knowledge of the weed being there and she found them guilty of the charge.

In sentencing, the magistrate was lenient on Reynard since she was only a minor at the time of the incident. She told Magistrate Frazer that she does not want to go to jail because she wants to go back to school and stay off the streets. She was then given a 3-year suspended sentence.  Magistrate Frazer explained to her that for the next 2 years, she cannot be arrested, charged or convicted for any other offense or else she will have to serve the 3-year prison term.

Williams and Avilez were also given the same 3-year suspended sentence. They however were also imposed the maximum fine for drug trafficking, which is $10,000. Both women have to pay that fine by March 31 or in default an additional three years behind bars.

-1 1 0 39 1/12/2012 06:00:00 62 0/0/0000 00:00:00 0 0 0/0/0000 00:00:00 1/12/2012 06:00:00 0/0/0000 00:00:00 show_title= link_titles= show_intro= show_section= link_section= show_category= link_category= show_vote= show_author= show_create_date= show_modify_date= show_pdf_icon= show_print_icon= show_email_icon= language= keyref= readmore= 1 0 9 0 1112 robots= author= 4256 Man burglarizes his brother’s house man-burglarizes-his-brothers-house

AndyOn Monday January 9th, Andy Avilez appeared in Magistrate’s Court for allegedly stealing from his own brother. Avilez appeared before Magistrate Roberto Ordonez where he was charged with burglary.


In court, Avilez pleaded not guilty to the charge.  He told Magistrate Ordonez that he was badly beaten by the police and although the police were told to take him to the hospital, they refused to do so.  He complained that he has a large chop wound in his head that needs urgent medical treatment.  Hearing this, Magistrate Ordonez made an order that Avilez be taken to the KHMH for treatment.  Avilez was remanded to the Belize Central Prison but not before he was taken to the KHMH. He is due back in Court on February 7.

According to a police report, by Alvaro Avilez, on August 16, 2011, at about 8:00 a.m., whilst he was driving on Orange Street, he saw his brother, Andy Avilez heading in the direction of Pregnant Alley. At the time, he was wearing a black t-shirt, and a colorful Hawaiian short pants.  About an hour later, at about 9:00 a.m., he saw his brother again and this time, he was wearing a pants, which belongs to him.  That’s when he went home and made checks and realized that it had been burglarized. Stolen during the burglary were a 22 inch flat screen television and an assortment of clothing and colognes all to a total value of $1,060.00.  -1 1 0 39 1/12/2012 06:00:00 62 0/0/0000 00:00:00 0 0 0/0/0000 00:00:00 1/12/2012 06:00:00 0/0/0000 00:00:00 show_title= link_titles= show_intro= show_section= link_section= show_category= link_category= show_vote= show_author= show_create_date= show_modify_date= show_pdf_icon= show_print_icon= show_email_icon= language= keyref= readmore= 1 0 8 0 805 robots= author= 4257 Popular Orange Walk businessman killed popular-orange-walk-businessman-killed

RudolfoPolice have confirmed that only one of 5 men, who were detained by Orange Walk Police, has been charged and arraigned in the Orange Walk Magistrate’s Court in connection to the murder of well-known businessman, Rodolfo “Boxie” Vidal Perrera, 37, a resident of Orange Walk town. 19 year old Leonardo Ayuso was arraigned on charges of Abetment to commit murder on Wednesday January 11th.


Perrera was gunned down on Sunday, January 7, 2012, at around 9 p.m. in front of his home on Oleander Street.

His family has refused to comment to the media but reliable reports from Orange Walk to the Guardian is that he closed up his shop, New Chito’s, which is located at the corner of Queen Victoria Avenue and Cinderella Street. He then immediately drove home in his white Izuzu Trooper, and stopped in front of his gate.

He never made it into his yard, because as soon as he exited the vehicle, with the engine still running, two men, who were apparently ready to ambush him, rushed out from their hiding place and fired a barrage of gunshots at him.

Residents on Oleander Street told the media that as much as 15 gunshots were fired, and 12 of those bullets hit Perrera in various parts of his body including the head and abdomen.

The men then escaped the way they had come, leaving Perrera to bleed out and die on the spot.

The motive for this shooting has still not been established by police, but they say that Perrera was robbed of a gold chain and his wallet. As a result, they are looking at a possibility that robbery was the motive.
Other residents of Orange Walk are of a different opinion; they suspect that his shooting, which was executed with brutal precision and ruthlessness, was done in retaliation.

The reason residents believe that it is a form of retaliation is because Perrera is the cousin of Renan Briceno Jr., who was recently charged for the murder of Dale Tillett, a George Street associate. It is alleged that Briceno shot Dale outside of Palm Island with his licensed firearm in the early hours of New Year’s Eve.

Police have said that they are looking at that possibility also, but they are not in a position to say that they are connected because the investigation is still in its early stages. Initially 5 men were arrested in connection with the murder since then 2 of those arrested were released while Ayuso was charged and two others remain in detention. A white Isuzu rodeo is also being held by police pending the outcome of their investigations.

Perrera was a husband and the father of 3 children, and he was reportedly a well-liked individual. -1 1 0 39 1/12/2012 06:00:00 62 0/0/0000 00:00:00 0 0 0/0/0000 00:00:00 1/12/2012 06:00:00 0/0/0000 00:00:00 show_title= link_titles= show_intro= show_section= link_section= show_category= link_category= show_vote= show_author= show_create_date= show_modify_date= show_pdf_icon= show_print_icon= show_email_icon= language= keyref= readmore= 1 0 7 0 1145 robots= author= 4258 2000 dollar fine for stealing 2 outlets 2000-dollar-fine-for-stealing-2-outlets

SteveOn Monday January 9th, Steve Anthony Codd,45, appeared in Magistrate’s court to answer to charges of theft after he was caught shoplifting at Save-U supermarket. Codd appeared before Magistrate Magistrate Roberto Ordonez and was read a single charge of theft.  Allegations are that on Sunday, January 8, 2012, at about 1:00 p.m., Codd entered Save U Supermarket and was seen on the surveillance camera placing 2 outlet strips into his clothing. When the security guard, Anthony Crawford of Save U was informed by the surveillance personnel, a search was conducted on Codd which led to the discovery of the two outlet strips, which was found in his pants front.


In court,Codd wasted no time and pleaded guilty to the offense of theft.  In mitigation, Codd asked the court for leniency and said that if he is imposed a fine he could pay it immediately. Magistrate Ordonez took into consideration the fact that Codd had no previous convictions for offenses of dishonesty and was fined $2,000 plus a $5.00 cost of court which he has until February 9 to pay or in default 2 years imprisonment. -1 1 0 39 1/12/2012 06:00:00 62 0/0/0000 00:00:00 0 0 0/0/0000 00:00:00 1/12/2012 06:00:00 0/0/0000 00:00:00 show_title= link_titles= show_intro= show_section= link_section= show_category= link_category= show_vote= show_author= show_create_date= show_modify_date= show_pdf_icon= show_print_icon= show_email_icon= language= keyref= readmore= 1 0 6 0 874 robots= author= 4259 Seven years for Stackles Monsanto for robbing cellphone seven-years-for-stackles-monsanto-for-robbing-cellphone

StacklesStackles Monsanto, 33, appeared in Magistrate’s court on Friday January 6th to face charges of robbery.


Monsanto appeared before Magistrate Sharon Frazer where his trial got underway for stealing a cellular phone from 25-year-old Idolly Saldivar. The robbery occurred on February 25 of last year.

Saldivar testified that at around 10p.m. on that on that night she was walking on Cemetery Road when she was ambushed by Monsanto, who grabbed her cellphone that was inside her pants pocket.  In his defense, Monsanto said that the police never found him in possession of the cell phone.The evidence before the court was overwhelming against Monsanto and Magistrate Dorothy Flowers did not believe his side of the story and found him guilty of the charge of robbery.

Monsanto had two previous convictions for robbery, and a non-custodial sentence could not be imposed. Magistrate Flowers then sentenced him to 7 years imprisonment.

Monsanto was recently released from prison after being granted bail.  He has served numerous stints behind bars after being charged for a number of offenses, including robberies and theft.  Monsanto was shot several years ago and that attempted murder case is before the Supreme Court where Ronlee Petillo will stand trial for the attempt on his life.

While we know him as Stackles Monsanto, according to Monsanto, his real name is now Aristotle Franklin.  But Monsanto has not done the process to legitimize his name.

-1 1 0 39 1/12/2012 06:00:00 64 0/0/0000 00:00:00 0 0 0/0/0000 00:00:00 1/12/2012 06:00:00 0/0/0000 00:00:00 show_title= link_titles= show_intro= show_section= link_section= show_category= link_category= show_vote= show_author= show_create_date= show_modify_date= show_pdf_icon= show_print_icon= show_email_icon= language= keyref= readmore= 1 0 5 0 1004 robots= author= 4260 Minor charged for attempted robbery minor-charged-for-attempted-robbery

A teenaged minor who was stabbed during an attempted robbery at a recently open Arcade Game Room named Arcade World located on Freetown Road was released from the KHMH and handed into police custody.


The 16 year old was hospitalized with a single stab wound to the right rib cage area. The stabbing is alleged to have occurred on January 3rd, at Arcade World located at #23 Freetown Road at about 10:20 p.m. Allegations are that minor was stabbed while attempting to rob the establishment.  He was unsuccessful and ended up being stabbed by the manager.

On Tuesday January 11th he was arraigned before a magistrate in the Belize Family Court where he was read a single charge of attempted robbery. Reliable sources indicated that while the child knows his first name, he knew little about his identity or other relevant information.  When he was asked if he understood the charge he said yes. Even so the magistrate ordered a psychiatric evaluation to be conducted on the minor on his next court appearance schedule for February 2.  The evaluation was ordered because in the past, the minor was deemed not fit for trial because he has been diagnose with a mental problem after being injured in 1997 and sustain massive head injuries. In 2009, the minor was before the family court on a charge of common assault and that’s when he was deemed unfit for trial in that matter.  Usually in such cases the minor would have been remanded into custody at the Belize Youth Hostel, but due to his special condition, he was handed over into the care of his mother who signed bail for him in the sum of $800.

Franciso Rodriguez, 19, the Manager of Arcade World  told police that he was inside the shop in the company of a female aged 17 when the minor armed with a knife entered the shop and demanded money They got into a struggle and that’s when he grabbed another knife he had in his possession and stabbed the minor. The minor has been hospitalized since last week after being stabbed.

-1 1 0 39 1/12/2012 06:00:00 62 0/0/0000 00:00:00 0 0 0/0/0000 00:00:00 1/12/2012 06:00:00 0/0/0000 00:00:00 show_title= link_titles= show_intro= show_section= link_section= show_category= link_category= show_vote= show_author= show_create_date= show_modify_date= show_pdf_icon= show_print_icon= show_email_icon= language= keyref= readmore= 1 0 4 0 879 robots= author= 4261 Man charged for machete attack man-charged-for-machete-attack

DavidOn Tuesday January 10th David Secundino, 20 appeared in Magistrate’s Court in Belize City to answer to charges of aggravated assault with a machete and wounding. He appeared before Magistrate Roberto Ordonez where he was read the two charges. Secundino pleaded not guilty to both charges and  he  was offered bail of $2,000 plus a surety of the same amount which he met. He is due back in Court on February 21. 


On Saturday December 10, 2011, police responded to reports of a chopping incident between Miles 10 and 11 in Sandhill.Upon arrival they found James Rudon, 39, with chop wounds to the center of the head, both arms and in his back. Rudon, a construction worker of Sandhill, told police that at about 2:00 p.m., that day, he was attacked by three men, one whom he identified as David Secundino. -1 1 0 39 1/12/2012 06:00:00 62 0/0/0000 00:00:00 0 0 0/0/0000 00:00:00 1/12/2012 06:00:00 0/0/0000 00:00:00 show_title= link_titles= show_intro= show_section= link_section= show_category= link_category= show_vote= show_author= show_create_date= show_modify_date= show_pdf_icon= show_print_icon= show_email_icon= language= keyref= readmore= 1 0 3 0 794 robots= author= 4262 Charged with carnal knowledge charged-with-carnal-knowledge-

JasonJason Tingling, 23, appeared in Magistrate’s Court on Friday January 6th where he was charged with four counts of unlawful carnal knowledge.


Tingling is accused of having sex with a 14-year- old girl. He appeared before Magistrate Senior Magistrate Sharon Frazer. In the first instance, he is accused of having unlawful carnal knowledge with a girl 14 years and 4 months on June 2nd, 2010. In the second count, he is accused of carnally knowing the same girl sometime between June and December 2010. Count 3 says that he carnally knew the girl sometime between January and November of 2011 when the girl was 15 and count 4 says that he carnally knew the girl in November of 2011 when she was at the age of 15 years and 9 months. The girl did not go into details about the different encounters but told police that it has been happening since she was 14.

In court no plea was taken and Tingling was informed that the matters are indictable and will be tried only at the Supreme Court.   Due to the nature of the offenses, no bail was offered and he was remanded to the Hattieville Prison until February 20.   Senior Magistrate Sharon Frazer explained to Tingling that he has the right to apply at the Supreme Court for bail with the assistance of his attorney.  Jason Tingling is to appear in court on February 20. -1 1 0 39 1/12/2012 06:00:00 62 0/0/0000 00:00:00 0 0 0/0/0000 00:00:00 1/12/2012 06:00:00 0/0/0000 00:00:00 show_title= link_titles= show_intro= show_section= link_section= show_category= link_category= show_vote= show_author= show_create_date= show_modify_date= show_pdf_icon= show_print_icon= show_email_icon= language= keyref= readmore= 1 0 2 0 1074 robots= author= 4263 Honeymoon Jackpot!!! honeymoon-jackpot

DisarkiOn Monday, January 9, Disarki Lewis left his home in Dangriga and travelled to Tropical Gaming’s office in Belize City to collect his prize for winning Lotto’s $117,500 Jackpot.


Lewis is not a hardcore Lotto player. He has been playing for just over a year and only plays when the Jackpot is above $100,000. On Wednesday, January 4, the Jackpot was way over $100,000 and he bought his ticket at the Dangriga Texaco gas station. On Thursday, he went to buy at a Chinese grocery shop near his home when he stopped to check on the numbers that were drawn. He had his friend waiting for several minutes as he gazed at the blackboard. The numbers were 04, 15, 20, 21 and 23. His friend knew that he had won.

It was an early wedding present for the young entrepreneur. The father of three got married over the weekend and on Monday he picked up a cheque for $99,875. He said that he will use the money to pay off his mortgage. The next Lotto Jackpot is for $57,500. -1 1 0 59 1/12/2012 06:00:00 64 Shane D. Williams 1/12/2012 19:08:01 64 0 0/0/0000 00:00:00 1/12/2012 06:00:00 0/0/0000 00:00:00 show_title= link_titles= show_intro= show_section= link_section= show_category= link_category= show_vote= show_author= show_create_date= show_modify_date= show_pdf_icon= show_print_icon= show_email_icon= language= keyref= readmore= 2 0 4 0 1573 robots= author= 4264 Training for Financial Crimes and corruption training-for-financial-crimes-and-corruption

MagistratesIn early July 2011, part one of an Anti-Corruption/Financial Crime training was done where authorities in the Financial Intelligence Unit (FIU) were given a course on anti-money laundering tactics. That training was sponsored by the American Bar Association Rule of Law Initiative and the British High Commission.


Stage 2 of the training commenced on Monday where 25 participants, which were made up of magistrates and police prosecutors, attended a 2-day course held at the Radisson Fort George Hotel. The course was being conducted by the International Governance and Risk Institute (GovRisk), a consulting organization based in the United Kingdom.

This training comes in a somewhat timely manner because Belize occupies a strategic intermediary location, geographically, in the Trans-Atlantic Drug Trade. Because of this, the country is currently overwhelmed by attempts to traffic narcotics through our borders, despite the best efforts of our authorities.

The vast majority of the global academic and consulting institutions recognize the limitations of the war on drugs, and they’ve seen it fit to focus efforts to block the proceeds of the narcotics trade using anti-money laundering practices.

As a result, there is major international pressure on individual countries to get their legislature and judiciary up to a level of competence to limit, if not stop, financial institutions from accepting “dirty” money, and to successfully prosecute money laundering cases.

The training is currently being done by GovRisk’s representatives, Dominic Le Moignan, Director of Project Development, Kleo Papas, Director of Operations, and Monica Bond, the course’s main instructor, who has been active in many aspects of anti-money laundering in her 25-year tenure in Forensic Financial Investigation.

Dominic Le Moignan spoke to the media saying that this particular training is a capacity building exercise to equip all stake-holders and authorities, who would be the groups coming in contact with money laundering and the proceeds gained from illegal activities.

  He has also said that by showing the international community that Belize takes offenses of money laundering seriously, it presents another allure to the international investor community. It creates the perception that our authorities will do all in its power to bring offenders to justice.

Specific groups that GovRisk is planning to provide training for included the banking institutions, the police investigators, police prosecutors, the magistrates, and the Supreme Court Justices.

On Wednesday, a Supreme Court Justice, who has come all the way from Sierra Leone, headed the discussions of money laundering cases with our Supreme Court Justices. This Justice is reported have an extensive amount of experience with such cases, which he has presided over.

On Thursday, GovRisk will then extend their training to include the financial institutions of Belize, such as(but is not limited to) banks, credit unions, and insurance companies.

Finally, On Monday and Tuesday of next week, GovRisk will offer training to the Belize Police Department and the Department of Customs and Excise. -1 1 0 59 1/12/2012 06:00:00 62 0/0/0000 00:00:00 0 0 0/0/0000 00:00:00 1/12/2012 06:00:00 0/0/0000 00:00:00 show_title= link_titles= show_intro= show_section= link_section= show_category= link_category= show_vote= show_author= show_create_date= show_modify_date= show_pdf_icon= show_print_icon= show_email_icon= language= keyref= readmore= 1 0 3 0 926 robots= author= 4265 “Country Profile: Belize gets serious about becoming a BPO player” country-profile-belize-gets-serious-about-becoming-a-bpo-player

January 9th, 2012- Last year BELTRAIDE, in collaboration with the Belize Chamber of Commerce and Industry hosted Mr. Kirk Laughlin, Founder and Editor-in-Chief of Nearshore Americas, an online media publication for IT and BPO outsourcing in Central America, Caribbean, South America, Canada, and Mexico. BELTRAIDE, in promoting investment in this dynamic and versatile industry, invited Mr. Laughlin to tour Belize and meet with both business persons and government officials.


Mr. Laughlin’s visit resulted in an online published article written by Clay Browne, for Nearshore Americas, entitled “COUNTRY PROFILE: Belize Gets Serious about Becoming a BPO Player.” It highlights the advantages and opportunities for the industry’s growth in Belize. Below an abstract of the article:

“The BPO industry in Belize is still quite young. Yet, there are clear signs that private industry and public agencies are seriously examining how to create the right ecosystem to foster long term growth.”

Upon arriving in office two years ago, Prime Minister Dean Barrow decided enough was enough and took action against BTL, which has resulted in the carrier being nationalized. Despite this change, true telecom service liberalization has yet to occur. Recently an agreement was reached to enable rationalized Bandwidth pricing to be provided to BPO operators in Belize – substantially reducing service fees.

Belize is one of the most sparsely populated countries in Latin America, with a population of around 350,000. Around one-fifth of the population, upwards of 60,000 people, lives in the capital Belize City.   Belize has a reasonably good public school system, with functional literacy estimated to be around 75 percent for the country and above 80 percent in the urban areas. Belize has never had much of an industrial base, so the work force has traditionally been focused on service industries. Belize City has developed an above-average infrastructure over the last decade or two, including reliable Internet and cell phone service throughout the area.

The IT outsourcing industry is just in its infancy in Belize, but BPO companies report that there is already a good supply of entry-level software developers available.” (Browne, NearShore Americas, 2012)
To read the complete article visit: http://nearshoreamericas.com/country-profile-belize/ or simply click on to like BELTRAIDE’s facebook page where you can get updates, articles and much more. -1 1 0 59 1/12/2012 06:00:00 62 0/0/0000 00:00:00 0 0 0/0/0000 00:00:00 1/12/2012 06:00:00 0/0/0000 00:00:00 show_title= link_titles= show_intro= show_section= link_section= show_category= link_category= show_vote= show_author= show_create_date= show_modify_date= show_pdf_icon= show_print_icon= show_email_icon= language= keyref= readmore= 1 0 2 0 1102 robots= author= 4266 BTB’s Announces 4th Road Warrior – Kristin Fuhrmann Simmons btbs-announces-4th-road-warrior--kristin-fuhrmann-simmons

KristenBelize City, Belize – January 9, 2012 – The BTB is pleased to announce that it has selected Kristin Fuhrmann-Simmons as its next writer for the Road Warriors program. Kristin, a professional pastry chef, will be arriving in country today, January 9, 2012 and will be focusing on the culinary practices and traditions of Belize during her three-month tenure here. The selection of Kristin as Road Warrior is a perfect fit, as the BTB has set the goal of increasing culinary and gastronomic tourism in 2012 and beyond. Kristin has been to Belize once, and is thrilled to return, as she met numerous chefs and home cooks making delicious dishes she's keen to learn more about.


In addition to her work as a pastry chef, Kristin is a freelance writer who specializes in writing about food. She writes for the Seacoast/Dow Jones newspaper in Maine, United States, which will give her prominent space to feature stories about Belize. She will also be blogging about her experiences in the country on her personal blog, 4ticketsplease.com, and will be developing unique, original multimedia projects and offline experiences to share more about Belizean culture with food lovers and prospective travelers abroad.

One of the other special elements of Kristin's tenure as Road Warrior is that she will be joined by her family for part of her time here. During her family's stay, Kristin's husband and their two young daughters will focus on the subject of family travel, and will expand the audience of the Road Warrior program by reaching young people and families through fun, engaging content.

To date, the Road Warriors Program has been extremely successful, and has resulted in Belize being featured in international media, including CNN, the British magazine Complex'd, and many other outlets. We look forward to Kristin's arrival and her deep exploration of our country's diverse, delectable cuisine. -1 1 0 59 1/12/2012 06:00:00 62 0/0/0000 00:00:00 0 0 0/0/0000 00:00:00 1/12/2012 06:00:00 0/0/0000 00:00:00 show_title= link_titles= show_intro= show_section= link_section= show_category= link_category= show_vote= show_author= show_create_date= show_modify_date= show_pdf_icon= show_print_icon= show_email_icon= language= keyref= readmore= 1 0 1 0 109 robots= author= 4267 More land distribution this time in Sarteneja more-land-distribution-this-time-in-sarteneja

RualEver since the United Democratic Party took up office four years ago, one of the biggest objectives has been  to distribute land in an equitable manner where first- time land owners are given priority. And this government has not flinched from that objective. In fact, the Prime Minister, Hon. Dean Barrow, in his New Years Message, announced that the programs efforts will be fortified. Currently, all surveyors in the country are employed by the government to subdivide 4,709 acres of land for first time land owners.


The program is on-going as over 100 house lots were distributed in Sarteneja village on Friday January 6th. Minister of Natural Resources, Hon. Gaspar Vega along with UDP Standard Bearer for Corozal South East, Raul Rosado distributed the lease certificates to the recipients, all being first-time land owners. This effort will be accompanied by many others to follow not only in that constituency but across the country as soon as surveyors conclude their work. The Minister of Natural Resources says that the effort is to ensure that every deserving Belizean receives a parcel of land. -1 1 0 40 1/12/2012 06:00:00 62 0/0/0000 00:00:00 0 0 0/0/0000 00:00:00 1/12/2012 06:00:00 0/0/0000 00:00:00 show_title= link_titles= show_intro= show_section= link_section= show_category= link_category= show_vote= show_author= show_create_date= show_modify_date= show_pdf_icon= show_print_icon= show_email_icon= language= keyref= readmore= 1 0 8 0 1043 robots= author= 4268 Hon. Rene Montero keeps on delivering hon-rene-montero-keeps-on-delivering

NewHon. Rene Montero has been incessant in giving as much as he possibly could to make life better for the residents of Cayo Central. Testament to his great work was evident once again on Monday January 9th when the ribbon was officially cut to open a new pre-school in San Antonio Village.


In March of last year, with the assistance of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, the government received a grant from Japan’s Official Development Assistance Program under the Grassroots and Human Security Grant Project for the construction of a Preschool. The total Contract cost for constructing the preschool building was $195,948.05. The building is designed to withstand hurricane force winds and will be utilized as a hurricane shelter if necessary. It consists of two classrooms with the capacity to accommodate up to 75 students per shift. It also has an office space for the principal, a kitchenette, a shower room, two restrooms for student and one for the staff.

The Minister of Agriculture and the Government of Belize believe that empowering our youths through education is the best tool to combat poverty and crime. -1 1 0 40 1/12/2012 06:00:00 62 0/0/0000 00:00:00 0 0 0/0/0000 00:00:00 1/12/2012 06:00:00 0/0/0000 00:00:00 show_title= link_titles= show_intro= show_section= link_section= show_category= link_category= show_vote= show_author= show_create_date= show_modify_date= show_pdf_icon= show_print_icon= show_email_icon= language= keyref= readmore= 1 0 7 0 1056 robots= author= 4269 Councillor Willie Cruz’s Statement of Candidacy Withdrawal councillor-willie-cruzs-statement-of-candidacy-withdrawal

I would like to inform the residents of Corozal Town that I have decided to withdraw my candidacy for the upcoming municipal elections.

While I am confident that I did not break any law, I believe that it is my moral responsibility to withdraw my candidacy at this point in time.

I will pursue the advice of my Party and take legal actions against those who made false statements against me to tarnish my reputation.

Special thanks to my family and all the people of Corozal who have supported me for two consecutive terms in office. I pledge my full support to my successor and will do all I can to secure victory for the United Democratic Party in the upcoming elections.

Willie Cruz
Councillor
Corozal Town Board

-1 1 0 40 1/12/2012 06:00:00 62 0/0/0000 00:00:00 0 0 0/0/0000 00:00:00 1/12/2012 06:00:00 0/0/0000 00:00:00 show_title= link_titles= show_intro= show_section= link_section= show_category= link_category= show_vote= show_author= show_create_date= show_modify_date= show_pdf_icon= show_print_icon= show_email_icon= language= keyref= readmore= 1 0 6 0 1014 robots= author= 4270 The UDP Corozal Bay Executive’s Position on Councillor Cruz’s Withdrawal the-udp-corozal-bay-executives-position-on-councillor-cruzs-withdrawal

The Executive Committee of the United Democratic Bay Division convened on Sunday, January 8, and unanimously agreed to replace Councillor Candidate Willie Cruz with Councillor Jude Budna upon receiving a letter of withdrawal from Councillor Cruz in regards to the upcoming municipal elections.

Councillor Cruz has been advised to use every possible legal option available to him to clear his name.

The Committee takes this opportunity to thank Councillor Cruz for the two terms of hard work and dedication he has given to the Council and to the people of Corozal.

The United Democratic Party Corozal Bay Division congratulates the present Town Council under the leadership of Mayor Hilberto Campos for the excellent work they are doing and assures all residents of Corozal Town that the UDP will once again be victorious in the municipal elections which will be held on March 7, 2012.

- Press Release -

-1 1 0 40 1/12/2012 06:00:00 62 0/0/0000 00:00:00 0 0 0/0/0000 00:00:00 1/12/2012 06:00:00 0/0/0000 00:00:00 show_title= link_titles= show_intro= show_section= link_section= show_category= link_category= show_vote= show_author= show_create_date= show_modify_date= show_pdf_icon= show_print_icon= show_email_icon= language= keyref= readmore= 1 0 5 0 447 robots= author= 4271 Lucas Minimus first Belize Bank now he owes HRCU lucas-minimus-first-belize-bank-now-he-owes-hrcu

LukeIt is no secret that Luke Espat has fallen from grace, and what a mighty fall it has been. He’s lost every single one of his major business ventures after being indebted to the Belize Bank for over a hundred million dollars. One by one, the Lord picked off the assets, stripped them and sold them off through receiverships. Crockland and Indeco went first then it was the imposing Renaissance Towers, which was held by Private Investment Limited and the last of the investments, the Port of Belize was swiped from under his feet as a result of non-payment.


But even as Lucas Maximus has been losing assets for non-payment he’s somehow been able to secure loans at the Holy Redeemer Credit Union amounting to hundreds of thousands of dollars. For the managers at the credit union, that account is one that bears watching. This man does not have a very good track record at managing his finances and hopefully he will be able to meet payments on his commitment to the credit union, after all credit unions are know as the poor people’s bank. -1 1 0 40 1/12/2012 06:00:00 62 0/0/0000 00:00:00 0 0 0/0/0000 00:00:00 1/12/2012 06:00:00 0/0/0000 00:00:00 show_title= link_titles= show_intro= show_section= link_section= show_category= link_category= show_vote= show_author= show_create_date= show_modify_date= show_pdf_icon= show_print_icon= show_email_icon= language= keyref= readmore= 1 0 4 0 406 robots= author= 4272 Johnny’s Desperate Spin!!! Out Looking for boyfriend or Money??? johnnys-desperate-spin-out-looking-for-boyfriend-or-money

DennyOrange Walk Central has never seen a politician deliver as much and as often as Denni Grijalva. In less than a year, Denni has been instrumental in the rehabilitation of 30 streets and paving of 5 others, installation of culverts to improve drainage, distribution of thousands of dollars in scholarships, donation of houses and appliances, upgrading of the sugar road in San Estevan Village and issuance of social assistance to the needy. Over the Christmas holiday, Denni held an event that packed the People’s Stadium inside and out. His popularity in the area continues to increase rapidly and residents have developed two slogans due to his emergence. The first is “Denni Gets Things Fone” and the second is “Run Johnny Run Cause Denni Di Come”. Therefore, there is no wonder why for the first time in his political career, Johnny is haunted by the sound of the election bells.


On Tuesday, his camp orchestrated a media blitz with a woman whose story changed after every interview. In an interview with 7 News, she said that Elections and Boundaries officers came to her home and asked her about the whereabouts of two individuals. She told them that “they were not here”. Later in an interview with 5 News, she said that the Elections and Boundaries officers asked her about the whereabouts of four or five individuals. Furthermore, she stated that she just looked at their paper and informed them that the individuals (who she claims not to know were recently naturalized. She then went on to say the one thing people say when they are doing something with a political agenda - without even being asked. “I am not into politics.” Yet, even the independent media revealed that her “press conference was arranged by the John Briceno camp”.

Neighbours of the woman have said that her loyalty to Johnny is no secret. Members of Denni’s camp know this as well. The idea that they would use the house of a PUP loyalist to conduct phony voter registrations is ludicrous. In fact, many are saying that it was the other way around. They are saying that her candidate was trying to register voters at her house and she was supposed to say they lived there. However, when the Elections and Boundaries officers visited the house she was not at home. More than likely she was “out looking for a boyfriend” like she claims she is doing most of the time. Sources say that it was one of her two daughters who told the officers that the individuals did not live there. Because of that, the individuals will be disqualified as voters in Orange Walk Central and they developed a scheme to spin the embarrassment on Denny’s camp. Poor Johnny!!!

If the woman had spent a little less time “out looking for a boyfriend” then they would have gotten two or four or five more votes when elections are held.

-1 1 0 40 1/12/2012 06:00:00 64 Shane D. Williams 0/0/0000 00:00:00 0 0 0/0/0000 00:00:00 1/12/2012 06:00:00 0/0/0000 00:00:00 show_title= link_titles= show_intro= show_section= link_section= show_category= link_category= show_vote= show_author= show_create_date= show_modify_date= show_pdf_icon= show_print_icon= show_email_icon= language= keyref= readmore= 1 0 3 0 287 robots= author= 4273 Luke Espat’s Last Stand!!! The Lord Giveth and the Lord Taketh Away luke-espats-last-stand-the-lord-giveth-and-the-lord-taketh-away

LukeMatthew 25 verse 30: “Throw that worthless slave into the outer darkness…”
For months, the Guardian has been raising awareness on Luke Espat’s shaky status as owner of the Port of Belize Limited. Just before 8 a.m. on Thursday, January 5, Arturo “Tux” Vasquez, receiver appointed by Private Investment Limited, made his way onto the compound of the Port of Belize Limited to assume control of the company. Vasquez was accompanied by officers of the Belize Police Department because previous attempts to deliver papers to management were met with resistance. The officers’ presence was necessary to ensure a smooth transition of ownership with little or no delay in operations. The compound is an international port-of- entry and the officers were instrumental in the execution of a civil takeover. It took less than 15 minutes for the receiver and his executives to enter and take control of the compound.


President of the Christian Workers Union, Antonio Gonzalez, and General Secretary, James McFoy, arrived on the compound at 9 a.m. They gave a brief statement to the media. Gonzalez said, “We will ask for a meeting. We want to know what is happening. We learnt about this this morning.” McFoy said, “Our only concern is how this will affect [our stevedores].” Gonzalez and McFoy then made their way inside the main office and spent about thirty minutes meeting with Vasquez, who was now the new Chief Executive Officer, and his team which included Retired Major Lloyd Jones as an advisor. They did not get into details but the union was assured that “there will be no disruption of normal operations or any situation that will affect the status quo of our members and employees at this stage.” 

Luke Espat made his way on the compound and managed to meet with Vasquez and his team. According to information from individuals inside the room, Espat told Vasquez to make sure that the police officers stay on the compound because the moment they leave, he will be back to throw him out personally. Espat then left the office and invited the media to come speak with him inside the gates at the entrance of the compound. The security guards refused to open the gates and that was when Espat blew a fuse. He shouted angrily, “Unu still work fi me! Now open that gate!” The security guards appeared both scared and confused as a police officer told them not to open the gate. They eventually submitted to the will of the man they called boss for years and opened the gate. Members of the media stormed in to hear from Espat. He accused the police officers of assisting “the breachment of a security area with what we'd call a receivership document presented by some of our creditors.” He called it “a white collar crime” because the Port was being stolen from him as it was “current with its obligations.” However, according to bank documents, the company has been in default with its loan payments and has failed to pay interest amounting to $3.7 million dollars. According to reports, the Espat-owned port had a $76 million loan agreement with British Caribbean Bank and is allegedly still on the hook for $64 million.  

Private Investment Limited is a part of the Ashcroft Alliance. Ashcroft may be Belize’s number one enemy but it is difficult to be sorry for Luke because he was not a faithful servant.With failed investments like Crocland, Indeco, Renaissance Towers and now Port of Belize, he did not enrich the lord’s empire. 

-1 1 0 40 1/12/2012 06:00:00 64 Shane D. Williams 0/0/0000 00:00:00 0 0 0/0/0000 00:00:00 1/12/2012 06:00:00 0/0/0000 00:00:00 show_title= link_titles= show_intro= show_section= link_section= show_category= link_category= show_vote= show_author= show_create_date= show_modify_date= show_pdf_icon= show_print_icon= show_email_icon= language= keyref= readmore= 1 0 2 0 325 robots= author= 4274 First Class Bridge at South Creek Starts Southside Rejuvenation phase II first-class-bridge-at-south-creek-starts-southside-rejuvenation-phase-ii

SouthThe Ministry of Works completed the construction of approaches to the South Creek Bridge in early December. Construction halted on the bridge for a few months after the base and body was completed. It is a massive structure that made residents of Queens Square extremely proud. However, the approaches to the bridge were not inserted because the area had to be fitted for the structure.


The height of the bridge demanded that the street perpendicular to the south approach be raised. Since it is a residential area and the canal is a water body, raising the street could cause flooding. Therefore, the project had to include both earth work (raising the street) and a drainage component. Culverts were inserted in the area and drainage was improved. On Friday, January 6, employees of the Ministry of Works were at the site laying foundation for the paving of the area. The project was completed on Monday, January 8, and the result is a picture perfect bridge. Even the skeptics are impressed.

The completion of the South Creek Bridge is extremely significant because it joins Phases I and II of the Southside Rejuvenation Project. The construction of the bridge was part of Phase I of the project and the paving of adjacent streets and other streets in the city is a part of Phase II. Minister Anthony “Boots” Martinez said that the project to pave Jane Usher Boulevard should start by the end of January. There are several columns at the sides of the South Creek Bridge. According to the Chief Executive Officer in the Ministry of Works, Cadet Henderson, the columns are retaining walls. Those retaining walls are needed for the canal’s concrete lining project that is part of Phase II of the Southside Rejuvenation. It will see the lining of that entire canal stretch as well as the canal from Yarborough Bridge to Vernon Street Bridge and the paving of all streets running alongside them. Phase II will also see the repaving of Neal’s Pen Road, refurbishment of Faber’s Road, and several other secondary streets. That project includes the hot mix paving of Central American Boulevard.

Residents of the North side of Belize City are also currently benefitting from street upgrades made possible by government allocated funds.

-1 1 0 40 1/12/2012 06:00:00 62 0/0/0000 00:00:00 0 0 0/0/0000 00:00:00 1/12/2012 06:00:00 0/0/0000 00:00:00 show_title= link_titles= show_intro= show_section= link_section= show_category= link_category= show_vote= show_author= show_create_date= show_modify_date= show_pdf_icon= show_print_icon= show_email_icon= language= keyref= readmore= 1 0 1 0 127 robots= author= 4275 Interoffice softball competition resumes interoffice-softball-competition-resumes

LeonoraThe 10th Annual Belize City Interoffice Softball Competition resumed on Monday January 9, 2012, at Rogers Stadium. The competition, which started late last year, had to be postponed because of the weather and the resulting  wet conditions of the field.


In the game played on Monday January 9, 2012, the Police edged KHMH by the score of 18-17 in nine innings. The game was full of excitement when both teams failed to execute in the later goings of the game.

The Police was able to call on its late innings reserved to edged KHMH.

The winning pitcher was Leonora Morales and the losing pitcher was Arlette Castillo.

The competition continues at the Rogers Stadium on Mondays, Wednesdays, Fridays, Saturdays and Sundays until Friday, January 27th when the Grand Final game will be played. -1 1 0 41 1/12/2012 06:00:00 62 0/0/0000 00:00:00 0 0 0/0/0000 00:00:00 1/12/2012 06:00:00 0/0/0000 00:00:00 show_title= link_titles= show_intro= show_section= link_section= show_category= link_category= show_vote= show_author= show_create_date= show_modify_date= show_pdf_icon= show_print_icon= show_email_icon= language= keyref= readmore= 1 0 3 0 640 robots= author= 4276 Belize City primary schools basketball competition to begin belize-city-primary-schools-basketball-competition-to-begin

The Belize City Primary Schools Basketball Competition is scheduled to commence on Monday January 16, 2012 in both girls and boys competition.

In the girls competition, a total of 8 schools will be participating, and those schools are: Holy Redeemer, Belize Elementary, Wesley Upper, Calvary Temple, St. Martin’s De Porres, Queen Square Anglican, Buttonwood Bay Nazarene and Ephesus Seventh Day Adventist.

Meanwhile, in the male category a total of  20 schools will compete in the competition. The schools are: Holy Redeemer, St. John’s Primary, Wesley Upper, Queen Street Baptist, Calvary Temple, St. Martin’s De Porres, Queen Square Anglican, Belize Elementary, Ephesus Seventh Day Adventist, Buttonwood Bay Nazarene, St. Ignatius, All Saints’ Anglican, Grace Primary, James Garbutt Seventh Day Adventist, Unity Presbyterian, Caye Caulker Roman Catholic, St. Mary’s, Ebenezer Methodist, Stella Maris, and New Horizon Academy.

This year’s competition has seen the addition of two new schools New Horizon Academy and Unity Presbyterian, who are participating in the programme for the very first time, and the return of Grace Primary, Calvary Temple, All Saints’ Anglican and Ebenezer Methodist from the PE in Schools Programme.

-1 1 0 41 1/12/2012 06:00:00 62 0/0/0000 00:00:00 0 0 0/0/0000 00:00:00 1/12/2012 06:00:00 0/0/0000 00:00:00 show_title= link_titles= show_intro= show_section= link_section= show_category= link_category= show_vote= show_author= show_create_date= show_modify_date= show_pdf_icon= show_print_icon= show_email_icon= language= keyref= readmore= 1 0 2 0 216 robots= author= 4277 Karate Federation to host Referee and Judging Seminar karate-federation-to-host-referee-and-judging-seminar

The Belize Karate Federation will be hosting an Officiating Seminar on Saturday January 14, at its Headquarters in San Ignacio Town, Cayo District.  According to the Belize Karate Federation, each club is asked to produce at least two officials, so that whenever there is a tournament, fairplay and the proper rotation of officials are maintained.

The Federation has extended an invitation to athletes, parents, senior Karatekas, referees and judges to participate in this event.

The Officiating Seminar is also geared towards athletes becoming familiarized with the new rules that have come into effect on January 1, 2012. While parents and senior Karatekas will be certified as scorekeepers and timekeepers.

For the referees and judges, the seminar will lead to national certification and the commencement of international certification.

-1 1 0 41 1/12/2012 06:00:00 62 0/0/0000 00:00:00 0 0 0/0/0000 00:00:00 1/12/2012 06:00:00 0/0/0000 00:00:00 show_title= link_titles= show_intro= show_section= link_section= show_category= link_category= show_vote= show_author= show_create_date= show_modify_date= show_pdf_icon= show_print_icon= show_email_icon= language= keyref= readmore= 1 0 1 0 212 robots= author= 4278 The Truth - about the nationalization process the-truth-about-the-nationalization-process

ImmigrantsIn typical fashion, the People’s United Party has been spewing xenophobia about the UDP’s moves to Nationalize persons who fit the criteria to become Belizean citizens. Four years ago, when the PUP was illegally nationalizing illegal aliens, they told those people that if the UDP were to win the elections, the UDP would take away their nationality.  Now, when persons are being nationalized legally, it is a different story altogether.

 Dolores was on the news claiming that this is something the PUP never tried. Of course it is something they never tried, the reality is that the PUP have never cared for immigrants who have made their lives in Belize. Their idea of giving nationality is to sell passports by the hundreds to the tune of hundreds of thousands of dollars and pocket the money. That is bad enough but those people, who received  nationality under the PUP, never even set foot on Belizean soil, yet the right to be a Belizean was simply sold to the highest bidder. That is the PUP way of nationalizing people.

Under Belize’s Constitution Section 26 it states that:

(l) The following persons may, upon making application at any time after Independence Day, be registered as citizens of Belize -
(a) any person who is married to a citizen of Belize;
(b) any person who has been resident continuously in Belize for a period of five years immediately before the date of his application;
(c) any person who makes a substantial contribution to the economy and/or well being of Belize or who has rendered distinguished service to Belize.

But more than that, the constitution under section 28 makes provisions for citizens of Guatemala (which has a claim to Belize) to renounce their citizenship before they are made Belizeans. That falls under section 28 (C) and it states the following:

The National Assembly may make provision, not inconsistent with this Part, in respect of citizenship, including provision for-

(a) the acquisition of citizenship of Belize by persons who are not eligible or who are no longer eligible to become citizens of Belize under this Part;
(b) depriving any person of his citizenship of Belize;
(c) the renunciation by any person of his citizenship of Belize.

Consider that the entire process is one which is riddled with processes. When a person is granted permission to enter the country, he/she may be given a 30-day stay. If that person wants to stay longer, he must go in for an extension of their stay. That process can be entertained for a year after which the visitor either leaves or can apply for permanent residency. It may well take the applicant more than a year before they are considered permanent residents. Imagine the tediousness of this process. It is not after being a permanent resident for 5 years or more that a person can apply for nationality.

That’s the TRUTH about the nationalization process; there is no hanky panky taking place. It’s a transparent process for everyone to see. Those persons who work day in and day out and actually contribute to the development of the country, are being made Belizeans. They can be tracked, they can pay their taxes and we know who they are.

By their own admission, the PUP during a press conference they held on Wednesday, stated that the government is collecting the $300 fee for the processing of Nationality and that applicants are paying all other fees including for their police record. Apart from the fact that every single one of these persons qualifies for nationality, government is getting its rightful revenue.

Contrast this to the way how it was done under the PUP.  As the subsequent investigation revealed, Under the PUP, the former leader of the PUP not only waived all fees thereby depriving government of its rightful revenue, but he also waived all the other checks including the Special Branch vetting.

The people still remember the now deceased PUP JP - Papa Da Espat in San Ignacio, who signed the application forms in bulk and in one notorious case, after one such application form was completed, it disclosed that he certified knowing a 5-year-old child, for over 7 years, in effect saying that he knew the child 2 years before the child was born. And what was his compensation for that? He was over 80 years of age and was awarded a HUGE DFC loan to be repaid in 30 years, which means that he would have been over 110 years of age by the time he repaid the loan. This is the kind of abuse that took place under the PUP. Not to mention that he passed away a few years after getting the HUGE DFC loan.

Consider also that in 1993 there was an investigation on how nationality was being granted under the PUP. The report was done by the Consortium of Non- Governmental Organizations on the granting of Belizean nationality and was submitted to the citizens of Belize on the 6th of October 1993. On page 12 under the heading: Ministerial Intervention the report states that, “the review of 83 applications specifically selected from the 1992 to 1993 period demonstrated that the files were generally incomplete. Medical and security checks, Solicitor General vetting and Oaths of Allegiance were frequently omitted. This can be attributed in large part to a significant increase in political intervention. In the nationality granting process, frequent memoranda from the Ministry of Foreign Affairs directed the Department of Immigration to waive requirements to accommodate a larger number of applicants within shorter time periods as the 1993 elections came closer.”

The Report continues: “Political intervention directly from the Minister of Foreign Affairs in the first instance and later on from his Permanent Secretary and other officers resulted in the improper documentation of nationality files. Political interference became so institutionalized that the Minister no longer sent personal messages ‘in confidence’ to the Department of Immigration but the Ministry staff began sending directives, which applied to large number of applicants.” In the end a total of 2,177 persons were nationalized and of those only 953 registered to vote.  So the question needs to be asked, are the people being served by the UDP going to register to vote? There is no better teacher than history.
That’s the TRUTH! -1 6 0 54 1/19/2012 06:00:00 62 0/0/0000 00:00:00 0 0 0/0/0000 00:00:00 1/19/2012 06:00:00 0/0/0000 00:00:00 show_title= link_titles= show_intro= show_section= link_section= show_category= link_category= show_vote= show_author= show_create_date= show_modify_date= show_pdf_icon= show_print_icon= show_email_icon= language= keyref= readmore= 1 0 1 0 1200 robots= author= 4279 Used and Abused by the PUP used-and-abused-by-the-pup

ReneeFor any who have doubt of how ruthless, uncaring and plain out worthless the People’s United Party is, you can read the following letter by Renee Trujillo to Francis Fonseca begging for mercy after she was used, abused and terminated by the PUP for no reason.


Dear PL,
This email serves as an appeal asking that you kindly take into consideration my request for payment for Standard Bearer and Municipal Conventions I worked during the period February 2011 - November 2011.  While I was employed by the People's United Party, the SG, Ms. Montejo had issued an email to staff stating that we were to apply for time compensation for all conventions worked countrywide on the weekends.  Considering that I was terminated from the Secretariat, due to my post becoming redundant, I did not have the opportunity to receive any time compensation and therefore am hereby requesting financial payment for the weekends worked.  According to the Labour Department, the total due is $6,262.00 BzD.

The Labour Officer, Mr. Barber has been in contact with the Chairman, Henry Usher, who indicated that court proceedings should commence on this matter as the Party will not be paying any monies to me as I was never employed full-time by the Party.  This is an untrue statement as I have a copy of my contract for the period 2008 - 2010 along with my payment vouchers for 2011, which will verify that I was a full-time employee.  While there have been no Social Security deductions from my pay or that of any of my former colleagues at the PUP Secretariat, I was deemed a full-time employee at the headquarters as I worked beyond the required 45 hours weekly.

If your decision is to take this matter to court, then I will respect that and will retain the services of an attorney to guide me through this process. 

I apologize for not coming directly to you prior to going to the Labour Department but I did have a meeting with the Chairman following my termination and I did express to him my desire to receiving payments for the conventions.  I also had Ms. Dolores intervene on my behalf to the Chairman but she had advised me to go in to see the Chairman and see what can be done.  

I would greatly appreciate your urgent attention on this matter as I was an employee, who gave the party my all and despite all efforts to work hard and be loyal to the Party, I was discarded for the third time by the PUP, which can only leave me to believe that I am considered a 'nobody' by the powers that be.  Perhaps you are or not aware that in 2003 I was terminated at the Belize City Council by the then Deputy Mayor, Yasmin Shoman due to an issue with the fence of her home on the Northern Highway.  Apparently, I did not do a good enough job lying to the media about the legal status of her fence. 

In 2011, after taking Vibes Radio's revenues from $1500.00 monthly to almost $10,000.00 monthly in advertisements, developing sound and human interest programs and revamping the format, I was replaced with absolutely no verbal or written notice.  I went to work one Monday and was told to clean out my office as Mr. Gerald Garbutt had already taken up the post of GM.  I was transferred to work between the Secretariat and the then PL's office with a pay cut and then transferred fully to the PUP HQ. 

In addition to all this, I had submitted my application to run for the PUP City Council and a few weeks before heading into convention, the Chairman, Henry Charles asked me to withdraw my application as he and the SG are very fond of me and my efficiency in carrying out the Secretariat's duties and they would not want me to become side-tracked.  Unsure of my decision, I was then called in by the SG and was given an ultimatum to either withdraw my application or resign from the Secretariat.  This, I believe was uncalled for and unfair as many PUP politicians started out at the Secretariat and then progress from there to achieve their political aspirations.  In any case, as a single mother, I opted to withdraw my application as I was sold the idea by the Chairman that I had job security with the Party.

A few weeks following the Citco convention, I was terminated from the Secretariat leaving me with no job and stripped of the opportunity to run in the convention. After being jilted a time too many by the only political party my family (Raul Aguilar, Joseph Aguilar, Enrique Martinez (former editor of the Belize Times) among many others - and I have ever supported, I decided to walk away from the PUP as the powers that be have proven to not be genuine in their talks of social justice, empowering women, etc.

I hereby ask that you give my request serious consideration.

Respectfully,
Renee Trujillo (Ms.)

If the PUP can do this to their own imagine what they will do to the Belizean People.

-1 6 0 53 1/19/2012 06:00:00 62 0/0/0000 00:00:00 0 0 0/0/0000 00:00:00 1/19/2012 06:00:00 0/0/0000 00:00:00 show_title= link_titles= show_intro= show_section= link_section= show_category= link_category= show_vote= show_author= show_create_date= show_modify_date= show_pdf_icon= show_print_icon= show_email_icon= language= keyref= readmore= 1 0 3 0 2637 robots= author= 4280 PM: Light Bill Going Down February 1st pm-light-bill-going-down-february-1st

PMIt was at his quarterly press conference on June 8, 2011 that Prime Minister Dean Barrow broke the news that the Belize Electricity Limited was finding it difficult to pay for power supply. Government was given an ultimatum by Lynn Young, then CEO of the Company, who basically said either the government instruct the Public Utilities Commission to grant a rate increase or the nation will be plunged into darkness. Young appeared on the local news and gave no valid reason why the company was suddenly on the brink of collapse but placed the onus on government to “solve it”. The government made a $4 million pre-payment to BEL for its power supply but the executives of the company did not use the money wisely and the imminent collapse was only delayed. PM Barrow said, “This country under this government will not be plunged into blackouts. We are going to assure a stable supply of electricity for this country. The government is prepared to do whatever is necessary to assure a stable electricity supply to the country.” On June 20, 2011 the House of Representatives passed an amendment to the Electricity Act for the assumption of control over electricity supply by the government in the public interest.


Seven months after that bold and historic acquisition, the country not only continues to have a steady supply of electricity, but is on the verge of seeing a significant decrease in rates. On December 2, it was announced that BEL had applied to the PUC for a Full Tariff Review Proceeding (FTRP) for the period July 1, 2012 to June 30, 2016 and proposed a 3.4% rate decrease. On Thursday, January 12, the PUC released its Initial Decision, which recommends a 6.14% decrease. Therefore, instead of paying 44 cents per kilowatt hour, consumers will now pay 41.3 cents per kilowatt hour. Also, the social rate threshold was also increase. Consumers, who currently use less than 50 kilowatt hours per month, pay a social rate at 26 cents per kilowatt hour. When the new rates take effect, consumers using less than 60 kilowatt hours per month will pay only 24 cents per kilowatt hour of electricity. That change is expected to take the number of consumers paying the social rate from 7,000 to over 8,000.  

The new rates were set to take effect on July 1; however, on Friday, January 13, the Minister of Public Utilities, Information and Broadcasting, Hon. Elvin Penner, introduced an amendment to the Electricity (Tariffs, Fees and Charges) Byelaws. That amendment will allow the new rates to take effect as of February 1.  -1 6 0 53 1/19/2012 06:00:00 64 Shane D. Williams 0/0/0000 00:00:00 0 0 0/0/0000 00:00:00 1/19/2012 06:00:00 0/0/0000 00:00:00 show_title= link_titles= show_intro= show_section= link_section= show_category= link_category= show_vote= show_author= show_create_date= show_modify_date= show_pdf_icon= show_print_icon= show_email_icon= language= keyref= readmore= 1 0 1 0 1232 robots= author= 4281 Sand Hill Village family busted with crack cocaine sand-hill-village-family-busted-with-crack-cocaine

A bust at a residence in the Sand Hill area resulted in the discovery of 1.2 grams of crack cocaine and as a result 4 peoplewere arraigned in court on a of drug trafficking.


52-year-old Margaret Milligan, a Food vendor of Sand Hill, along with her husband, 57-year-old Egbert Milligan Sr., a retired Storeroom Keeper, who is disabled; along with their daughter, Kaylene Milligan and another relative, Darnell Milligan appeared before Magistrate Hettie-Mae Stewart in Court #5 where they were charged with one count each of drug trafficking.  There was no objection to bail and the group was offered bail in the sum of $5,000 each plus one surety of the same amount. All with the exception of Egbert Milligan Sr., met bail. He was not set free since he owes the court a significant amount of money.

The bust occurred on Monday, January 16, at the family’s home in Sand Hill Village.   Police say they conducted a search in the presence of the four when they found 1.2 grams of crack cocaine.  The drugs was found in the ceiling of the home. -1 1 0 39 1/19/2012 06:00:00 62 0/0/0000 00:00:00 0 0 0/0/0000 00:00:00 1/19/2012 06:00:00 0/0/0000 00:00:00 show_title= link_titles= show_intro= show_section= link_section= show_category= link_category= show_vote= show_author= show_create_date= show_modify_date= show_pdf_icon= show_print_icon= show_email_icon= language= keyref= readmore= 1 0 10 0 1134 robots= author= 4282 Two charged for Copper Theft two-charged-for-copper-theft

On May 8, 2011 a BEL Power Plant was targeted by thieves, and  the plant was left with $18,000 worth of damages. They manage to steal over $5,000 worth in copper wires from the plant.  Police had responded to the theft and saw three bicycles parked in the area and three men fleeing from the area.  They later managed to apprehend two of the fleeing suspects and on Friday January 13th they were arraigned in the Belize City Magistrate’s Court.


The men identified as 25-year-old Fredrick Ivan Lennon, a resident of #37 Plues Street in Belize City and 22-year-old Jerome Swift, a resident of Mahogany Heights located at Mile 31 on the Western Highway appeared in Court before Magistrate Emerson Banner where they were read two charges. They were charged with  theft for stealing Perimeter group copper wire valued $3,000 and ground grid copper wires value $2,000.00 from the plant, property of  BEL. The theft occurred on Thursday, May 5 at the BEL Plant located at the junction of La Democracia and the Western Highway. They were additionally charged with damage to property. After an assessment was made, it was revealed that the men caused damages to a chain link fence worth $500; a surveillance camera, which cost $525 to repair; grounding cables for the control room costing $500; a lock valued $400; an operation handle DC charger battery worth $1,000.00, an a/c unit evaporator worth of $400 as well as damages to ground wires that were uprooted in the amount of $15,000. The total damages amounted to $18,325.00.

In court both Lennon and Swift pleaded not guilty to the charges and although there was no objection to bail made by the court prosecutor, Sgt. Clinton Magdaleno, Magistrate Banner remanded them to Hattieville Prison until May 30.    The arrest of the men came after Mahogany Heights Police received information at about 1:46 p.m., on Thursday, May 5, that the BEL Power Plant located at the La Democracia Junction being broken into with by culprits.  Upon arrival, police say they saw three men fleeing the scene.  Police say the men managed to escape on separate bicycles, however, two of their identities were known.  Police got a report that was done by James Paxton, Distribution Technician for BEL, who estimated the damages to be at $18,325.00. Police say the men had cut the lock to the gate and entered the premises they then proceeded to cut the wires to the surveillance camera. -1 1 0 39 1/19/2012 06:00:00 62 0/0/0000 00:00:00 0 0 0/0/0000 00:00:00 1/19/2012 06:00:00 0/0/0000 00:00:00 show_title= link_titles= show_intro= show_section= link_section= show_category= link_category= show_vote= show_author= show_create_date= show_modify_date= show_pdf_icon= show_print_icon= show_email_icon= language= keyref= readmore= 1 0 9 0 1050 robots= author= 4283 Man beaten with a hammer man-beaten-with-a-hammer

DavidTwenty-year-old Kevin Martinez had to undergo surgery to the head after he was hit to the head with a hammer. While Martinez underwent surgery, 35-year-old David Rene Castillo was remanded to prison after he appeared in Magistrate’s Court and was charged with grievous harm and use of deadly means of harm upon Kevin Martinez.


Castillo appeared before Senior Magistrate, Sharon Frazer in Court #2 where he was slapped with two counts - one count of grievous harm upon Kevin Martinez and one count of use of deadly means of  harm.  On Friday, January 13, 2012, Castillo hit Martinez with a hammer.   The Honduran national was only read the charges; no plea was taken, however, the Senior Magistrate explained to him that at this moment, the prosecutor is not in the position to indicate to the court whether or not the matter will be tried on indictment or summarily hence there was no plea. The prosecutor also objected to bail on the grounds that the police were not certain of the condition of Martinez since he had to undergo surgery since the attack.  The prosecutor also submitted that the police believed that bail should be denied to Castillo due to the serious nature of the charges, and that the facts are indicating that violence was involved. He also asked the court to take into consideration, the fact that if Castillo is granted bail at this time, there is the likelihood that he may interfere with the complainant.   Senior Magistrate Frazer agreed with the prosecutor and said that she will deny him bail so that the period acts as a cooling time for both sides. In his defense, Castillo, who was unrepresented, told the senior Magistrate that he was only defending himself.  He further told the court that it was Martinez, who came to his home and attacked him hitting him in the face and he grabbed a piece of stick and hit him in self-defense.  

David Castillo, who was remanded into custody, is due back in Court #2 on January 24. 

-1 1 0 39 1/19/2012 06:00:00 62 0/0/0000 00:00:00 0 0 0/0/0000 00:00:00 1/19/2012 06:00:00 0/0/0000 00:00:00 show_title= link_titles= show_intro= show_section= link_section= show_category= link_category= show_vote= show_author= show_create_date= show_modify_date= show_pdf_icon= show_print_icon= show_email_icon= language= keyref= readmore= 1 0 8 0 953 robots= author= 4284 Man charged for killing a man while driving drunk man-charged-for-killing-a-man-while-driving-drunk

SolemniOn Wednesday January 11th, 44 year old Roberto Thomas Rivero was knocked down and killed whilst riding his bicycle on a pedestrian walkway on Central American Boulevard. Police say the driver, who knocked him down was under the influence of alcohol and on Friday January 13th, 28-year-old Solemni Chun appeared before Chief Magistrate, Anne Marie Smith where he was charged with 6 counts for causing the death of 44-year-old Roberto Thomas Rivero.


Chun appeared before the Chief Magistrate unrepresented and was read one count of manslaughter by negligence; improper overtaking; causing death by careless conduct; driving a motor vehicle without due care and attention; driving a motor vehicle with alcohol concentration above the prescribed limit; and driving a motor vehicle on the foot path. No plea was taken and while the prosecutor had no objection to bail, the Chief Magistrate remanded Chun to the Hattieville Prison. She informed him that he will have to get an attorney to apply for bail on his behalf at the Supreme Court.  Chun is due back in Court #1 on February 8.

 According to police, at about 7:50 p.m., on Wednesday, January 11, Chun, the driver of a grey 2001 Chevrolet Astrovan, was heading towards the Bel-Can Bridge and when he got in front of the City Center area, he reportedly over took a red car causing Rivero’s death. He sustained severed head and body injuries and was rushed to the KHMH where he succumbed to his injuries at about 10:55 p.m., that night. 

-1 1 0 39 1/19/2012 06:00:00 62 0/0/0000 00:00:00 0 0 0/0/0000 00:00:00 1/19/2012 06:00:00 0/0/0000 00:00:00 show_title= link_titles= show_intro= show_section= link_section= show_category= link_category= show_vote= show_author= show_create_date= show_modify_date= show_pdf_icon= show_print_icon= show_email_icon= language= keyref= readmore= 1 0 7 0 976 robots= author= 4285 First theft now burglary charges for Steve Anthony Codd first-theft-now-burglary-charges-for-steve-anthony-codd

SteveLast week Belize City resident, Steve Anthony Codd, appeared in court to answer to charges of theft after he was caught shoplifting in Save-U on the weekend of Sunday, January 8. A week later, he appeared in Magistrate’s Court on yet another charge, this time for burglary.


Codd is being accused of entering the business place of Brandon McKoy, McKoy’s Fast Food  located on Central American Boulevard where he allegedly stole some pots, half case of chicken and a blender. 

Codd appeared before Magistate Hettie-Mae Stuart where he pleaded guilty and told the magistrate that he and the CIB police are going through some things and right now he just wants to finish off with this case. When Magistrate’s Stuart asked him if he was guilty of the offense he was pleading guilty to and whether or not he understood the charge and the penalty, he hesitated and said that he just wanted to finish up with the case and that he had no one to bail him either. Magistrate Stuart then told him that those were no reasons to plead guilty and that she could not accept his guilty plea. She then entered an equivocal plea of not guilty on his behalf and the matter was adjourned for February 21.   Codd was granted bail in the sum of $4,000 plus one surety of the same amount.  There were objections in court by the prosecutor, who submitted to the court that bail should be denied to Codd since he recently pleaded guilty to a theft and was fined and now owes the court money.  The prosecutor also submitted that the victim in this case is a small businessman, who has become frustrated since he was burglarized. In his defense Codd pointed out that when he pleaded guilty to the theft, he was given time to pay his fine which he has to do by February. He then added that he does not see the relevance of the prosecution objecting to him bail. He also claimed that he does not even know the complainant in this case. -1 1 0 39 1/19/2012 06:00:00 62 0/0/0000 00:00:00 0 0 0/0/0000 00:00:00 1/19/2012 06:00:00 0/0/0000 00:00:00 show_title= link_titles= show_intro= show_section= link_section= show_category= link_category= show_vote= show_author= show_create_date= show_modify_date= show_pdf_icon= show_print_icon= show_email_icon= language= keyref= readmore= 1 0 6 0 1010 robots= author= 4286 “Bad Boy” busted with weed asks Magistrate “don’t tell my mom” bad-boy-busted-with-weed-asks-magistrate-dont-tell-my-mom

RichardOn Sunday January 15th police arrested 52-year-old American National, Richard Allen Eli at the Phillip Goldson International Airport after he was found in possession of 5 grams of cannabis and an 8 inch pipe in length. He appeared in court on Monday January 16th where he was charged with one count of possession of a control drug and one count of possession of a pipe.


On Sunday, January 15, at about 4:35 p.m., whilst at the PGIA, Eli was found in possession of 5 grams of cannabis and a pipe.

In court, Eli pleaded guilty to both charges and told the court that, “I was a bad boy.”   While he had nothing to say in mitigation for the magistrate to consider on his behalf, Eli said that he must say that the arresting officer was very professional and courteous to him as he was well fed and taken care of while in custody and he was very thankful for that.    He threw himself to the mercy of the court and told the Magistrate that, “I will deserve whatever you give me.”  He also found humor in his situation and asked the magistrate not to tell his mom about it.  Since he had no previous conviction and is considered a first time offender in Belize, Eli was fined $350.00 plus  $5.00 cost of court for the possession of a controlled drug while he was fine $600 plus $5.00 cost of court for the pipe possession.  The two fines had to be paid forthwith since he is not a Belizean.  In default of payment, Eli will have to serve 3 months plus an additional 6 months imprisonment.  The sentences are to run concurrently. 
 
According to PC Erwin Pech, he was at the PGIA at about 4:35 p.m., when he was asked to assist a Customs Clerk to conduct a search on Eli.  As a result of his search, he found a transparent zip lock bag inside his left pants pocket, which contained a green leafy substance suspected to be cannabis.  A further search led to the discovery of a blue plastic pipe, which was found inside his bag that he had in his possession.  

-1 1 0 39 1/19/2012 06:00:00 62 0/0/0000 00:00:00 0 0 0/0/0000 00:00:00 1/19/2012 06:00:00 0/0/0000 00:00:00 show_title= link_titles= show_intro= show_section= link_section= show_category= link_category= show_vote= show_author= show_create_date= show_modify_date= show_pdf_icon= show_print_icon= show_email_icon= language= keyref= readmore= 1 0 5 0 1214 robots= author= 4287 Granny accused of burglary and damage to property granny-accused-of-burglary-and-damage-to-property-

GlendaOn Monday January 16th, 58 year old Glenda Neal appeared in Magistrate’s Court where she was charged with burglary and damage to property. Neal, a resident of the Fresh Pond area of Burrell Boom, appeared before Magistrate Sherigne Rodriguez where she was formally arraigned on the charges.


When the charges were read to Neal, she pleaded not guilty to both of them.  Bail was offered to her in the sum of $600 plus one surety of the same amount.  Neal is due back before the court on March 1.

In a report made to police on January 12, 2012, Delmont Black reported that at about 1:30 p.m. he was at home in Fresh Pond area of Burrell Boom when he saw a lady whom he identified as their neighbor, Glenda Neal. He has know Neal for the past ten years.  According to Black, he heard a knock on the door but when he got up to see who it was, he saw no one at the door.  Minutes later, he heard a noise and that’s when he went to look the window where he claims he saw his neighbor.  According to Black, he saw Neal clearing some pieces of glass from in front of the window and he saw her push her hands through it. When she saw him, she left.  According to Black, Neal begged him not to tell anyone about what had happened before she left the area.   John Wade, a Taxi-driver of the Boom area, who is the owner of the house, told police he gave no one permission to enter his home or to damage any of his items in his absence and requested court action into the matter.  

-1 1 0 39 1/19/2012 06:00:00 62 0/0/0000 00:00:00 0 0 0/0/0000 00:00:00 1/19/2012 06:00:00 0/0/0000 00:00:00 show_title= link_titles= show_intro= show_section= link_section= show_category= link_category= show_vote= show_author= show_create_date= show_modify_date= show_pdf_icon= show_print_icon= show_email_icon= language= keyref= readmore= 1 0 4 0 994 robots= author= 4288 Granted bail after 7 months on remand granted-bail-after-7-months-on-remand

LeroyAfter more than seven months on remand for a burglary, 22-year-old Leroy Gomez is out on bail. Gomez appeared in Magistrate’s  Court on Tuesday January 17th where he was offered bail of $7,000 plus a surety of the same amount. Gomez was unable to meet that bail when he appeared before Magistrate Dorothy Flowers and he remains in custody until he can do so. 


Gomez, along with five others, were charged in connection with a burglary that had allegedly occurred in the Lake Independence area on May 31, 2011. That day the home of Kim Burgess, an employee of GST, was burglarized and a number of household items were stolen.  Many of the stolen items were later recovered. As a result Gomez, along with his girlfriend, Julia Welch, 20, of #6488 Jasmine Street; Ernest Staine, 21, a mechanic of #42 North Front Street; Benua Andrews, 21, of Fern Lane in Belize City; 28-year-old Taletha Cruickshank, of #1235 Vista Del Mar area and pregnant 20-year-old Kerrisha McCauley, a resident of #4012 Berry Street, were charged in connection with the burglary.

Leroy Gomez is due back in the Belize City Magistrate’s Court on January 30.  He was once accused of being a serial rapist. He was charged with rape but later saw his conviction quashed.

-1 1 0 39 1/19/2012 06:00:00 62 0/0/0000 00:00:00 0 0 0/0/0000 00:00:00 1/19/2012 06:00:00 0/0/0000 00:00:00 show_title= link_titles= show_intro= show_section= link_section= show_category= link_category= show_vote= show_author= show_create_date= show_modify_date= show_pdf_icon= show_print_icon= show_email_icon= language= keyref= readmore= 1 0 3 0 992 robots= author= 4289 Shop keeper to Stand Trial for Having Sex with School Girl shop-keeper-to-stand-trial-for-having-sex-with-school-girl

ArdenIn December of 2011, shop keeper, Arden Allan Middleton, who was accused of having sex with a 13-year-old student, was granted bail in the sum of $20,000 in the Supreme Court. On Friday January 13th, he was back in court where he appeared before the Chief Magistrate, Anne Marie Smith. The preliminary inquiry into the matter concluded and he saw his case committed to the Supreme Court for trial this year.


In the PI, Middleton did not challenge the evidence as he was unrepresented and the matter was dealt with by way of a paper committal. The Chief Magistrate relied on the many statements given to the police by various witnesses including the 13-year-old school girl, who is the alleged victim. In court, the Chief Magistrate asked Middleton if he has any witnesses that he will be calling on his behalf and he said that he has four persons and gave their names to the prosecutor for the record.

Middleton was accused of having sex with the 13-year-old girl at Wilt’s Place in Belize City on Wednesday, July 13. The girl told police that she went to the store where Middleton was and whilst there she needed to use the bathroom. She then asked Middleton to show her his restroom. The child further alleged that whist inside the bathroom, Middleton, who she also knows as “Gads,”  then entered the bathroom, approached her.  He pulled down her pants and took her into his bedroom where he had sexual intercourse with her against her will.

Middleton is due back before the court on April 16, which marks the commencement of the April session  of the Supreme Court. -1 1 0 39 1/19/2012 06:00:00 62 0/0/0000 00:00:00 0 0 0/0/0000 00:00:00 1/19/2012 06:00:00 0/0/0000 00:00:00 show_title= link_titles= show_intro= show_section= link_section= show_category= link_category= show_vote= show_author= show_create_date= show_modify_date= show_pdf_icon= show_print_icon= show_email_icon= language= keyref= readmore= 1 0 2 0 1700 robots= author= 4290 Leadership on Display!!! leadership-on-display-

The Belize City Mayoral debate on Tuesday, January 17, gave residents of the city a better understanding of each candidate’s vision for the commercial capital of the country. Five prospects for mayor sat side-by-side and shared their ideas on a wide range of issues. Darrell Bradley represented the United Democratic Party and did so magnanimously. The biggest argument in any debate is usually based on the question that immediately follows. “Who won the debate?”


Paco Smith represented the VIP, which is a movement and not a political party - even though they set up candidates to run for elections and so forth. We at the Guardian have always commended him for his fantastic radio voice. His natural language is poetry and each sentence from his mouth rests on your ears like the sound of music. Unfortunately, his words are not heavy enough to sink. Throughout the entire debate, Smith said nothing of substance. He had trouble with the time because he told long tales about nothing. In his response to the question “What changes will you make if you are elected Mayor of Belize City?” Smith said, “The changes that I will make will be different from what you see today.” What? For someone with such a nice voice, command of the English language and wide vocabulary, Paco Smith doesn’t say much. 

There is not much to say about Stephen Okeke. Quite frankly, no one was listening to his presentation. His quest to be mayor was once farfetched and after “threat-gate,” he has turned into an outright joke. It was during Okeke’s time to talk that everyone chose to respond to their text messages or think of what better things they could have been doing. Stephen Okeke is a very talented individual, who has a good Belizean story to tell. However, he is definitely not the man you’d want in charge of the city’s affairs.

Bodden started with a five minute monologue about how the debate is like the start of the civil rights movement. She did not quite bring that comparison home but for those with limited analytical skills she won points for saying civil rights movement. Bodden was effective in delivering populist points on unreal ideas. She seems to not understand the role of a municipal government. Bodden really seems to believe that as mayor she could eliminate crime, solve world hunger and maybe even cure cancer. Again, her presentation was effective for those who possess limited analytical skills - the same people the PUP prey upon.

It was Ernesto Torres, who had to rope in Bodden and explain to her the functions of a municipal government. Torres did better than expected but will be remembered as the jester of the debate. Talent scouts in the Darrell Bradley committee may want to pay close attention to Torres as he may prove to be useful in an advisory role at the Traffic Department.

One very intelligent individual once said, “It is easy to be bias when your guy is that good.” Darrell Bradley was definitely the most impressive participant of the debate. He started by speaking of his personal take in his candidacy. Bradley explained the love that he and his wife have for the city. He explained that it is the same dream we all share and that is to live in a Belize City that is peaceful, clean and conducive to prosperity. He explained that he will lead a council where everyone will be held accountable for their action and the staff will receive opportunities for capacity building. He chose not to focus on his opponents but on the sentiments of city residents. He said residents are frustrated because they want leadership that works. He reached out to the other mayoral candidates and informed them that he would be willing to work with them because “change will not come when we emphasize our differences but when we focus on what unites us.” Bradley concluded by asking citizens to not only take part in the municipal election but to become active in the day to day affairs of the city because “The problems facing the city are not UDP or PUP problems. They are our problems.”    

-1 1 0 40 1/19/2012 06:00:00 64 Shane D. Williams 0/0/0000 00:00:00 0 0 0/0/0000 00:00:00 1/19/2012 06:00:00 0/0/0000 00:00:00 show_title= link_titles= show_intro= show_section= link_section= show_category= link_category= show_vote= show_author= show_create_date= show_modify_date= show_pdf_icon= show_print_icon= show_email_icon= language= keyref= readmore= 1 0 11 0 1284 robots= author= 4291 PWS… POLL WITHOUT SENSE pws-poll-without-sense

KarimThe PWS, Poll Without Sense crew, were joined this week with two of its newest members in findings that can only be described as transcending from the sublime to the ridiculous. Karim “Creamy” Berges and Yasmin Andrews placed their proverbial asses on the line as they joined Glen Tillett,who obviously has an axe to grind.  So the obvious question is, why would these two purported UDPs join Glen Tillett and help him grind his axe?  The answer lies in one of the definitions of a poll, according to Webster’s New World College dictionary, 4th Edition.  It is, “the blunt or flat end, as of an ax, ” and another, “to cut off or cut short.”   We here at the Guardian would want to suggest that whether it was the poll, the pollsters, their methodology, their sampling size, or their findings, all would lend credence to one or the other or both of these two definitions.


The first and most obvious question is why would purported members and supporters of the United Democratic Party, take their personal money, their personal  resources, and their personal  time, and conduct a poll which, irrespective of the outcome, should be for the benefit of the UDP, and share it with everyone else except the UDP? We cannot, nor would we attempt to answer that question for what happens in the head of a man or woman is not the purview of mere mortals, but the old saying does come to mind, hell hath no fury like a (wo)(man) scorned.

The present CEO in the Office of the Prime Minister was at one time Campaign Manger of the UDP; she is now the CEO of the Prime Minister’s Ministry.  Creamy was at one time also the Campaign Manager for the UDP, but … he now is now a “pollster.”  Is it that he has an ax of his own to grind, or is it that his, “ambitions,” were cut short?

Thanks to the UDP, Yasmin Andrews was at one point the First Secretary to the Belize Mission in the United Kingdom; there is no need to go in to why she is not there anymore, but… she is also now a “pollster.”  Does she have an ax to grind?  We are certain that her ambitions, of her own volition, were cut short.

The moral of the story is that in Belize things are seldom as they seem.  Call it sour grapes, call it blue Konkas, call it what you may.  But just stop and appreciate the other definition, perhaps the definition we are all familiar with that Webster’s gives, of a poll.  “A canvassing of a selected or random group of people to collect information, or to attempt to discover public opinion.”
Given the foregoing, which, “Poll,” was Creamy and Yasmin conducting?

-1 1 0 40 1/19/2012 06:00:00 62 0/0/0000 00:00:00 0 0 0/0/0000 00:00:00 1/19/2012 06:00:00 0/0/0000 00:00:00 show_title= link_titles= show_intro= show_section= link_section= show_category= link_category= show_vote= show_author= show_create_date= show_modify_date= show_pdf_icon= show_print_icon= show_email_icon= language= keyref= readmore= 1 0 10 0 1297 robots= author= 4292 UDP Gives Houses to Poor People PUP Gives People to Poor Houses udp-gives-houses-to-poor-people-pup-gives-people-to-poor-houses

On Friday, January 13, the Prime Minister of Belize presented motions to the House of Representatives requesting permission to write off 798 mortgages. 782 of the mortgages were from the Social Security Board and 17 were managed by the Heritage Bank Limited. The SSB mortgages had outstanding balances of $50,000 or less and had aggregate value of $17 million however, their present value was $6.99 million. The 17 mortgages at Heritage Bank had an outstanding balance of $403,025.25.


The Leader of the Opposition asked, “Why has it become a matter for celebration and grandstanding when Belizean families are no longer able to meet their mortgage payments?” The question everyone else is asking is “why is it that people cannot afford to meet their payments?” The answer is simple. They were deceived by the PUP government. The PUP built houses and offered them to Belizeans at $250 per month. Those payments were manageable and Belizeans got on board. Unfortunately, they did not anticipate that their mortgages would eventually be served to lending agencies as security for government loans. People’s mortgages went from agency to agency without prior notification. Managers of the mortgages then changed the payment schedule so that instead of $250 a month it was $400 or more. Most tried cutting corners to meet their payments. The business sector suffered as a result since mortgage payers had less to spend on non-essentials.  Sadly for some, $250 per month was already a sacrifice and the increase caused the dream of eventually owning their house to fade away.

So why celebrate? Because of this government, more than ten thousand (10,000) Belizeans can now say, “This is my house. The mortgage is paid in full.” In a meeting with residents of the Queen Square constituency, one man asked Prime Minister Barrow, “Chief, I like the board houses that your government is building but why don’t you build some concrete houses and allow poor people to pay about $125 monthly?” PM Barrow responded, “No way. Everything this government builds for poor people will be free.” PM Barrow has railed multiple times about the separation of wealth that took place under the PUP. As the economy expanded, a few people became extremely wealthy and the majority became poorer. In the Prime Ministers forum in September, he spoke about the need to correct it and do more for the poor. The recent mortgage write-off adds to the list of initiatives that this government has done to alleviate people out of poverty and get the economy moving again.

The SSB mortgage write-off was made possible through funds owed to the government by SSB.  Government made a pre-payment on a loan that SSB had to service and SSB was to repay in monthly installments. Instead, they have opted to pay annually. Government had budgeted to collect $4 million in March of this year, but SSB’s actual scheduled repayment is for $11 million. Therefore, government will be able to use the $6.9 million to pay for the mortgages as an offset transaction and Government will still end up with budgeted collection of $4 million.
The PM also announced that some form of assistance is coming for individuals with mortgages at the Development Finance Corporation.

-1 1 0 40 1/19/2012 06:00:00 64 Shane D. Williams 0/0/0000 00:00:00 0 0 0/0/0000 00:00:00 1/19/2012 06:00:00 0/0/0000 00:00:00 show_title= link_titles= show_intro= show_section= link_section= show_category= link_category= show_vote= show_author= show_create_date= show_modify_date= show_pdf_icon= show_print_icon= show_email_icon= language= keyref= readmore= 1 0 9 0 1008 robots= author= 4293 UDP 7 Ready in Dangriga udp-7-ready-in-dangriga

SupportersIt rained all morning in Dangriga on Sunday, January 15. The Dangriga UDP Committee had scheduled a rally for 2 PM that afternoon to introduce its slate for the March 7 municipal election and the constant downpour was cause for concern. Shortly before 2, vehicles lined up in front of the Benguche Park, UDP flags were passed out and the rain suddenly stopped. Hon. Arturo Roches joined His Worship Mayor Aaron “Jake” Gongora as he led his team and supporters in a motorcade throughout the town. More and more vehicles joined the motorcade and a motorcyclist facilitated all those asking for flags. The motorcade included sound systems and cultural drummers. It ended at the Princess Royal Park with a short rally. By that time, the sky was clear of any nimbus clouds. It broke out into a full-fledged party as Mayor Gongora introduced his team which includes Rudolph Williams, Earth Lopez, Peter Ciego, Cheryl Molina, Alexander “Lexus” Joseph and Yadira Diego. The UDP 7 was joined by Hon. Arturo Roches and Hon. Melvin Hulse. 

-1 1 0 40 1/19/2012 06:00:00 62 0/0/0000 00:00:00 0 0 0/0/0000 00:00:00 1/19/2012 06:00:00 0/0/0000 00:00:00 show_title= link_titles= show_intro= show_section= link_section= show_category= link_category= show_vote= show_author= show_create_date= show_modify_date= show_pdf_icon= show_print_icon= show_email_icon= language= keyref= readmore= 1 0 8 0 220 robots= author= 4294 The People’s United Party have lost the poor and the working class in Belize the-peoples-united-party-have-lost-the-poor-and-the-working-class-in-belize

When I was a child growing up in Belize, there were only two political parties, the People’s United Party (P.U.P.) headed by the late George Cadle Price and the National Independence Party (N.I.P.) headed by the late Philip Goldson. Most of the people in Dangriga Town where I grew up and throughout the country of Belize, were members of the People’s United Party because they were also members of the labor movement, which gave rise to the political parties in Belize. Philip Goldson himself was also a member of the People’s United Party but broke away from it after it was discovered that the then leader George Cadle Price was having secret dealings with Guatemala. In fact, it was while Philip Goldson was a member of the People’s United Party that he and Leigh Richardson a former leader of the People’s United Party was arrested, faced trial and then imprisoned for disrespecting the Queen of England. During their imprisonment, George Price became the leader of the People’s United Party after John Smith left the country.
The People’s United Party was so well organized that they had a men’s and women’s group with their marshals carrying their batons and dressed in their wee starched blue and white clothing. When the PUP had a meeting, the turnout was heavy and you could see the men and women dressed in their uniforms going to their party’s meetings. I can remember my father going to the PUP meetings when I was a child growing up. My mother was a staunch UDP up to the time of her death so I grew up in a UDP household. When the PUP had public meetings and George Price was coming to town, these PUP men would await his arrival and as soon as he came out of his jeep they would lift him up on their shoulders and take him to his resting place to Riverside Hotel owned by the Zabaneh’s next to the main bridge in Dangriga Town.
Some of the PUP men who were marshals did not work but would go to the Representative Allan Arthur’s house for money when he was living on Lemon Street. After they would get their money, they would go and sit by the bridge foot and talk politics all day while watching the passersby. This was at a time when Stann Creek District had jobs at Forestry, Hogstock, Pomona, Alta Vista, Middlesex, Caves Branch, Belmopan, Big Creek, Mango Creek and Commerce Bight Pier. Plus, they all had their farms to go and plant food if they needed to find something to do. When Philip Goldson came to town, these were the men that were paid  by the PUP party to go and heckle the meetings and stone Philip Goldson with rotten eggs until the meetings stopped. They were also told that if a police officer was to arrest them, they should take down his number and the PUP will deal with that police officer. One of them told me once; “I like George Price so much that if he was to tell me to vote for a broom stick that is dressed up, I would vote for it”. I said to myself how sick can a person be.
When the NIP changed to UDP in the 1970’s, most Belizeans still identified themselves with the People’s United Party because George Price was a politician that ran Belize with a political philosophy of ‘Patronism’. He always wanted the Belizean people to be dependent of the political party rather than providing them with the means to become independent. Most of the PUP I knew were not educated and depended on the People’s United Party for everything they needed. The people, who were at the top in the party, were educated and were benefitting more than the poor and the working classes. My family and most of the people in Dangriga Town, who were members of the UDP, did not need the PUP because a majority of us were educated and economically independent. Many Belizeans, who grew up around my time, would agree that these were the main differences between the people who identified themselves as PUP and UDP. After Belize became independent in 1981, Belizeans began to realize that they must change their attitudes towards the two political parties and PUP were defeated in the first election that was held in 1984 by a margin of 21-7 including the defeat of their leader George Price.
In the last ten years of the PUP controlling Belize under the Said Musa administration, all the ethnic groups in Belize noticed, that the wealth of our country was given mostly to; Belizeans of Arab extraction like Said Musa himself, the rich, a few other Belizean families, cronies and supporters of the party at the expense of all the other ethnic groups, the middle class, the working class and the poor. This made most Belizeans so upset that even up to today many PUP members have not forgiven their party for that mortal sin that they committed. Now, we the Belizeans, who did not benefit in those ten years, are responsible to pay for millions of dollars in debt that we did not benefit from. Sometimes, I think that these politicians think that Belize only belong to them and them alone. Well, they need to get that thought out of their heads now if they want to survive in Belize politics. This is the reason why the Belizean people voted them out with all their monies in 2008. It is time for the UDP to give the Belizean people not what they need but what they duly deserve and I would ask that if the government of Belize,  can give every citizen a lot and a house before election then let us not wait but give it to them now.

-1 1 0 42 1/19/2012 06:00:00 64 Wellington C. Ramos 0/0/0000 00:00:00 0 0 0/0/0000 00:00:00 1/19/2012 06:00:00 0/0/0000 00:00:00 show_title= link_titles= show_intro= show_section= link_section= show_category= link_category= show_vote= show_author= show_create_date= show_modify_date= show_pdf_icon= show_print_icon= show_email_icon= language= keyref= readmore= 1 0 1 0 365 robots= author= 4295 PUP Bruk but new rides for a privileged few pup-bruk-but-new-rides-for-a-privileged-few

LandThe pesky fly on the PUP secretariat’s wall has become quite the bothersome insect to deal with for the higher ups on Queen Street. They have become so paranoid that all offices are permanently under lock and key these days and power struggles between the former king and the new queen keep on getting better every day.

Most recently King Henry stormed into the PUP secretariat demanding that he be given the voter’s list for the constituency his dad represents since he had all authority to do so. His request was quickly rebuked and was sent scampering away as he was told in no uncertain terms by Sharole that the Secretary General, Queen Myrtle, runs things and that any such information must be given to him by her. He huffed, puffed and stamped his feet almost to the demise of the building but still there was no list forthcoming and he fumed away. And as he did that, the scheming queen attempted to remove him as the primary signatory on the secretariat’s account; it may well be that she was successful at that. We’ll find out! 

While the king is having his trials and tribulations, there are those who are sitting real pretty these days - in a Land Cruiser kind of way; Julius the National Campaign Manager has gotten a spanking new Land Cruiser, reports are that the plastic is still on the seats. Not to be outdone, Francis the party leader too has acquired a Landcruiser, it seems as if they were going ‘two fi di price ah one’ or they may well have just paid full price. In the PUP World we may never know. The rumor mill has it that the queen was also treated to a ride of her own but that damned fly on the wall simply refuses to spit that tidbit out. We’ll keep on asking though.

It is interesting that the dream team at the PUP headquarters are treating themselves to rides, some say at the expense of the party, when that party is finding it difficult to pay staff. Even Social Security benefits have been forfeited from time to time. For those at the top, that really is of no consequence as the Land Cruisers are a must especially when they hold such positions.
With all that power struggle and bad blood in the PUP it would seem that this party will never be able to unite, not when daggers are drawn all the time…

-1 1 0 40 1/19/2012 06:00:00 62 0/0/0000 00:00:00 0 0 0/0/0000 00:00:00 1/19/2012 06:00:00 0/0/0000 00:00:00 show_title= link_titles= show_intro= show_section= link_section= show_category= link_category= show_vote= show_author= show_create_date= show_modify_date= show_pdf_icon= show_print_icon= show_email_icon= language= keyref= readmore= 1 0 7 0 133 robots= author= 4296 Corozal North Next Stop on PM’s Tour corozal-north-next-stop-on-pms-tour-

CristoThe Prime Minister of Belize, Hon. Dean Oliver Barrow, started his national tour by visiting Chunox and Caledonia, two villages in the Corozal Southeast Constituency. On Sunday, January 22, he will be in the Corozal District again but this time in Cristo Rey Village. Residents of the village are working with Hugo Patt, UDP Standard Bearer for Corozal North, to prepare for the Prime Minister’s visit. PM Barrow is scheduled to arrive in San Pedro Village at 2 p.m. Residents will meet him there and escort him in a motorcade to Cristo Rey Village for an official program during which they will hear directly from the Prime Minister about current and future government programs. A huge announcement was made in Chunox Village that has Corozal residents extremely happy. That is every student going into first and second form in Corozal will automatically receive the $300 subsidy. Just as it is in the Stann Creek and Toledo District, Corozal students will no longer need to apply for the subsidy.

-1 1 0 40 1/19/2012 06:00:00 64 Shane D. Williams 0/0/0000 00:00:00 0 0 0/0/0000 00:00:00 1/19/2012 06:00:00 0/0/0000 00:00:00 show_title= link_titles= show_intro= show_section= link_section= show_category= link_category= show_vote= show_author= show_create_date= show_modify_date= show_pdf_icon= show_print_icon= show_email_icon= language= keyref= readmore= 1 0 6 0 94 robots= author= 4297 Two men to stand trial for the attempted murder of George Carr Jr. two-men-to-stand-trial-for-the-attempted-murder-of-george-carr-jr

Leo Palacio Jr. and Glenford Miller Jr., appeared in Magistrate’s court on Tuesday January 17th where their case was  committed to stand trial for the attempted murder of George Carr Jr.


The men appeared in Magistrate’s court where a Preliminary Inquiry was held for an attempted  murder charge they were facing. At the conclusion, their case was committed to the Supreme Court but were offered bail in the sum of 10 thousand dollars each. Due to the late evening court decision, they were unable to meet bail but did so on Wednesday January 18th.

The two accused men will stand trial at the April session of the Supreme Court on a charge of attempted murder, grievous harm and use of deadly means of harm.   Their old bail was revoked after the matter was committed to the Supreme

Court and they were granted the new bail.

On the morning of December 31st, 2011, 22-year-old George Carr, the son of a police man, was found lying on Elston Kerr Street with stab wounds.  According to police, at about 3:05 a.m., they visited the KHMH Trauma Room where they saw Carr, a resident of Berry Street suffering from stab wounds to the right side of the neck, and the left jaw.   In his statement to police that night, Carr told them that he was stabbed by two men whom he identified as Miller and Palacio. He told police that he was by the pedestrian ramp just after passing Elston Kerr Street when he was attacked by the men.  At the scene, police said they found blood stains on the side walk.   On New Year’s Day, a relative of the victim who, was at the scene when the stabbing occured, handed over to police a broken knife allegedly used in the stabbing. That witness also gave police a statement on what he saw occur that early morning.

-1 1 0 39 1/19/2012 06:00:00 62 0/0/0000 00:00:00 0 0 0/0/0000 00:00:00 1/19/2012 06:00:00 0/0/0000 00:00:00 show_title= link_titles= show_intro= show_section= link_section= show_category= link_category= show_vote= show_author= show_create_date= show_modify_date= show_pdf_icon= show_print_icon= show_email_icon= language= keyref= readmore= 1 0 1 0 147 robots= author= 4298 Kim simplis-Barrow delivers Gift of Mobility kim-simplis-barrow-delivers-gift-of-mobility

WheelchairsOn Thursday, January 12, Mrs. Kim Simplis-Barrow, Special Envoy for Women and Children and Global Ambassador to Special Olympics, presented wheelchairs to physically challenged Belizeans from across the country.


The donation came as a result of a visit to the Republic of China-Taiwan by Mrs. Barrow in which she met with several NGOs to chart means of collaboration. The Pusian Foundation committed to donate 250 chairs to Belize. At the handing over ceremony, chairs were delivered to various organizations. The Karl Heusner Memorial Hospital received 25 and individuals from Stella Maris School, CARE Belize and VOICE received chairs. Mrs. Barrow said, “Mobility is something that many of us take for granted.” She continued, “It may be hard for us to imagine being stranded inside our house and not being able to get around without assistance from family and friends or being limited by crutches, walkers, wheelchairs and canes but that is reality for many Belizeans.”

Also real is the fact that we have not done enough to make life easier for individuals living with disabilities - mental or physical. Most businesses have still not placed wheelchair ramps at the entrance of their establishments. Mrs. Barrow continues to call on businesses to do so. She said, “They should look at it as an investment in their own business. If they cater for people with disabilities, then their customer base widens.” She points to the fact that Belize has recently ratified the Convention on the Rights of People with Disabilities. A fundamental principle in that convention is the right to equal access and that starts by upgrading the infrastructure to make it user friendly for people with physical disabilities.

More than total inclusion, Mrs. Barrow wants for Belizeans with disabilities is empowerment. That is why she has embarked on a mission to see the construction of an inspiration center. The center will be a recreational and rehabilitation center. It will cater specifically to children with special needs and provide therapy to the physically disabled. Ambassador to Belize from the Republic of China-Taiwan, His Excellency David Wu, announced that his government is donating US$200,000 to the construction of the center. He commended Mrs. Barrow for her fight on behalf of people with disabilities and called it “a truly honourable fight indeed.”  He said, “For people with physical disabilities, every day activities that we take for granted... are tremendous tasks and burdens.”

According to Mrs. Barrow, each of the 250 wheelchairs already has owners. She said, “The need for wheelchairs is great in Belize.” One chair costs approximately $500. -1 1 0 40 1/19/2012 06:00:00 64 Shane D. Williams 0/0/0000 00:00:00 0 0 0/0/0000 00:00:00 1/19/2012 06:00:00 0/0/0000 00:00:00 show_title= link_titles= show_intro= show_section= link_section= show_category= link_category= show_vote= show_author= show_create_date= show_modify_date= show_pdf_icon= show_print_icon= show_email_icon= language= keyref= readmore= 1 0 5 0 76 robots= author= 4299 Free - 1 Meg WiFi hotspot in Belama, free-1-meg-wifi-hotspot-in-belama-

Everyday residents of the Belama area in the Freetown Division are beginning to make it a regular practice to gather at the Belama Phase 1 Park. Like any other park in Belize City, it has benches and other recreational facilities along with some green open space, but unlike others this one allows those who visit with mobile devices like cellular phones, tablets and laptops to hop on to the information super highway. Thanks to Lee Mark Chang, the park along with an area of over 500 meters in circumference has been turned into a WiFi hotspot with a one Meg connection.

For those who speak the Internet jargon, a Meg is an extremely fast connection to the Internet. It’s almost instantaneous and any person, who accesses the internet in the Belama Park, can attest to that. The service of free WiFi in Belama is an initiative by UDP Standard Bearer, Lee Mark Chang. In speaking to Chang, he explained that this first Internet hotspot is one of his initiatives in the Freetown area where Internet access will be granted to everyone in his division.  For the time being, there are two locations that have been designated with the first being in Belama, that service got underway on Thursday January 12th. Another hotspot will be established in the Lopez Mateos Park, which borders the Caribbean Shores and the Freetown divisions. Asked what the cost of the project is, Chang pointed out that it did not really matter so long as residents of the constituency benefit from the service. He added that he is targeting the young people in the division in particular since they are the ones who need the service especially for their education and social life.

-1 1 0 40 1/19/2012 06:00:00 62 0/0/0000 00:00:00 0 0 0/0/0000 00:00:00 1/19/2012 06:00:00 0/0/0000 00:00:00 show_title= link_titles= show_intro= show_section= link_section= show_category= link_category= show_vote= show_author= show_create_date= show_modify_date= show_pdf_icon= show_print_icon= show_email_icon= language= keyref= readmore= 1 0 4 0 86 robots= author= 4300 Western football team takes Hon. Gabriel Martinez football tournament western-football-team-takes-hon-gabriel-martinez-football-tournament

FirstOn Saturday January 14th, 2012 was the grand finale of the Honourable Gabriel Martinez-Libertad Village Council six-a-side football tournament. All villagers and surrounding community fans were present and excited to witness this event.


The first match for 3rd Place was played by Pirates and BAHA. At the end of the long whistle Pirates came out Victorious taking with them the 3rd place trophy and prize by 3-1 over Baha. The final match was played by Western, who had all their great stars like Woodrow West and Clifford West, against Bak-a-Town who had their stars Felipe Yuy and Tito Chi.

At the first ten minutes of the game Clifford West put Western on the top but the response was quick by Bak-a-Town striker Filadelfo Perez, who tied the score before the end of the first half.

The game was so challenging that the fans of both teams cheered and argued every play made against or in favour of their team. The long whistle blew and the game went to an extra time.

In the last three minutes of the extra time Clifford West gave Western the second score followed by Pokush, who scored the third and final goal that gave Western the Championship 3-1 over Bak-a-Town.
We must say big up to the Hon. Gabriel Martinez, who always has his community involved in educational and sporting activities. Already announcement was made for the Gabriel Martinez Basketball tournaments.

-1 1 0 40 1/19/2012 06:00:00 62 0/0/0000 00:00:00 0 0 0/0/0000 00:00:00 1/19/2012 06:00:00 0/0/0000 00:00:00 show_title= link_titles= show_intro= show_section= link_section= show_category= link_category= show_vote= show_author= show_create_date= show_modify_date= show_pdf_icon= show_print_icon= show_email_icon= language= keyref= readmore= 1 0 3 0 86 robots= author= 4301 New Ambulances for Ministry of Health new-ambulances-for-ministry-of-health

Hon.On Wednesday, January 18, the Minister of Health, Hon. Pablo Marin, handed over three ambulances, four pickup trucks and an SUV to different health regions across the country. In a brief ceremony at the Western Regional Hospital, Minister Marin handed over keys for the Ford diesel ambulances to the managers of the Northern, Southern and Central Regions. He also handed over keys for two 2011 Toyota Hilux pickup trucks to the Southern Health Region for the Nutrition Outreach Program and keys for two Great Wall pickup trucks to the HIV/AIDS committee in the ministry. A Toyota Land Cruiser was also handed over to the Maternal and Child Health Program in the Ministry of Health to be used in the south of the country.

Hon. Michael Hutchinson was present at the ceremony. He thanked the Minister of Health on behalf of residents of Ladyville since one of the ambulances will be stationed in the village.

-1 1 0 40 1/19/2012 20:44:56 64 0/0/0000 00:00:00 0 0 0/0/0000 00:00:00 1/19/2012 20:44:56 0/0/0000 00:00:00 show_title= link_titles= show_intro= show_section= link_section= show_category= link_category= show_vote= show_author= show_create_date= show_modify_date= show_pdf_icon= show_print_icon= show_email_icon= language= keyref= readmore= 1 0 2 0 995 robots= author= 4302 Supreme Court starts a new year supreme-court-starts-a-new-year

TheThe legal year of 2012 bench marks the formal beginning of Chief Justice Kenneth Benjamin's contribution to Belize's Judiciary, and his establishment in judicial administration. There have already been announcements of major changes to come, which signal a fitting start to a reform in our justice system.


On Monday, the ceremonial opening of the Supreme Court started at Wesley Methodist Church on Albert Street. It was here that the functionaries of the justice system gathered for an ecumenical mass. After that section was completed, Chief Justice Benjamin lead a group of no less than 60 officials, which included Supreme Court Justices, Magistrates, Attorneys, and other high-ranking personnel through the streets of Albert and Regent. They were led by a marching band made up of Belize Defense Force soldiers, police officers, and other volunteers.

The procession ended at the court house on Treasury Lane, where scores of onlookers gathered while the justices were escorted by the acting commissioner of police to their positions in front of the honor guard. Chief Justice Benjamin then descended the steps of the courthouse and inspected the honor guard in ceremonial fashion. It was then time for everyone to enter his courtroom for the annual speeches.

Benjamin began his address by thanking Justice Samuel Awich, who was the Acting-Chief Justice, for his efficiency in the short term as administrator. And while he noted the former Chief Magistrate, Margret Gabb-Mckenzie, for her steadfast dedication to the post and her years of service, he also welcomed the new Chief Magistrate, Anne Marie Smith.

Chief Justice Benjamin then discussed other new appointments, and he then jumped straight into a few of the problems facing the judiciary. The first thing he pointed out was the limited funding that the central government allots to the judiciary, which is currently capped at 1.08 percent of the national budget. He said that a request for more funds is the only logical solution because there are sections that face resource problems. He illustrated this by mentioning that the Supreme Court in the northern districts is forced to hold sessions in the same facility as the Magistrate's Court, which produces a back log of Magistrate's Court cases, since Supreme Court takes priority.

Another issue is the rise in violent crimes, and as a result, Chief Justice Benjamin has decided that he must preside over some of these cases in the interim. He did not place a timeline as to when this may change back.

Another challenge is that criminal cases have spiked and the accused people don't have access to many attorneys. As such, the state has had to cover the expenses, but many of the attorneys believe that they have not been adequately compensated for their services. Therefore, the legal aid assistance to accused persons becomes lacking, which forces trials to be delayed and stack up. Chief Justice Benjamin said that solutions are being explored, such as the possibility of the Attorney General Ministry being able to increase the compensation to private lawyers.

And while those are some of the difficulties facing the current system, there was some very good new announced. Trial without jury, which was legislated last year, becomes effective in this legal year for murder and murder related charges. This lessens interference by accused persons in the form of witness tampering and jury intimidation. Another significant endeavor is the fostering of a mediation program as an alternative to going to a long and expensive trial for civil matters. The Judicial Administrators are also consulting on the formation of a Judicial Education Body as a means of providing regular training to the judicial officers, in an effort to continuously improve the capacity of those officers.

To that end, he presented a report on the recent GOV RISK training that was done last week on money laundering and other financial crimes.

Benjamin then concluded on the note that it is his wish that bench/bar relations would further improve, and he declared that the legal year of 2012 was officially open.

Other notable speeches were made by Jackie Marshalleck, President of the Bar Association, and Bernard Q. Pitts, Attorney General. -1 1 0 59 1/19/2012 06:00:00 62 0/0/0000 00:00:00 0 0 0/0/0000 00:00:00 1/19/2012 06:00:00 0/0/0000 00:00:00 show_title= link_titles= show_intro= show_section= link_section= show_category= link_category= show_vote= show_author= show_create_date= show_modify_date= show_pdf_icon= show_print_icon= show_email_icon= language= keyref= readmore= 1 0 3 0 96 robots= author= 4303 Kay Menzies Just Doesn’t Get It!! kay-menzies-just-doesnt-get-it

KayThe Belize Chamber of Commerce is the one organization that should have raised no challenge to government writing off mortgages for the people of Belize. Whatever little confidence the business community had left in Kay Menzies surely evaporated after her recent grumbling about government’s decision to bail out 10 thousand Belizeans.   


She has placed her concern about the write offs on record saying that taxpayers money will have to pay for it. There is no pleasant way to say certain things - Kay Menzies needs to have her head examined. As the President of the Belize Chamber of Commerce, she should be popping cartwheels at such announcements. Even the man selling fruits and snacks in front of schools could explain to Kay that if someone doesn’t have to make mortgage payments anymore they will have more money to spend elsewhere. That means more money to spend on groceries, luxury items and (yes Kay) more money to spend on imported beers and paint.

Under the leadership of Kay Menzies, the executive of the Belize Chamber of Commerce has opposed every initiative of this government. They even opposed initiatives that benefit the business community. All of a sudden she is concerned about taxpayers money. If she is so concerned, she should urge her members (including members of the executive) to start paying their Business, Income and General Sales Taxes.
No matter what government does, the business community will not flourish until they get rid of the current BCCI executives. 

-1 1 0 59 1/19/2012 06:00:00 64 Shane. D. Williams 0/0/0000 00:00:00 0 0 0/0/0000 00:00:00 1/19/2012 06:00:00 0/0/0000 00:00:00 show_title= link_titles= show_intro= show_section= link_section= show_category= link_category= show_vote= show_author= show_create_date= show_modify_date= show_pdf_icon= show_print_icon= show_email_icon= language= keyref= readmore= 1 0 2 0 228 robots= author= 4304 FFB announces elections for Corozal Football Association branch ffb-announces-elections-for-corozal-football-association-branch

PRESS RELEASE: (January 16, 2012)
After reviewing the files for the Corozal Football Association, FIFA has determined that the decisions of the Electoral Committee and the Election Appeal Committee stand.
As a result, elections for the Corozal FA will be held this coming Sunday, January 22nd at 11:00 am at the Calcutta Community Center.

-1 1 0 59 1/19/2012 06:00:00 62 0/0/0000 00:00:00 0 0 0/0/0000 00:00:00 1/19/2012 06:00:00 0/0/0000 00:00:00 show_title= link_titles= show_intro= show_section= link_section= show_category= link_category= show_vote= show_author= show_create_date= show_modify_date= show_pdf_icon= show_print_icon= show_email_icon= language= keyref= readmore= 1 0 1 0 61 robots= author= 4305 Tell Tale Signs tell-tale-signs

Most parents know when their young children are trying to cover up some minor misdeed because young children protest too much.  When a toddler says, “Granny pee pee the floor” even before the puddle has been noticed, it is generally an indication that the guilty party is in fact the toddler.  As children get older they learn to cover their misbehaviour better and by adulthood some of us have become consummate liars.  However, even the best liars usually give tell-tale signs that a professional can decipher.  Remember the sweat that glistened on Said Musa’s upper lip or the increase in an already high- pitched voice that afflicted Johnnie?

Those adults that are not very good liars should avoid situations that put them in a position where they feel that a lie is the only option.  As part of its campaign to prevent all offshore and most new onshore drilling for oil, Oceana is attempting to trigger a referendum on the issue.  To this end, they have been collecting signatures on a petition and recently they presented the petition with 18,000 signatures to the Governor General.  The signatures must be audited by the Elections and Boundaries department to verify if the requisite 10% of registered voters has been attained, in this case 17,000 valid signatures, before it can move forward to the next stage in the process. However, a referendum is deemed to pass not only if a plurality of the electorate votes in its favour but also if a minimum of 60% of registered voters participate in the exercise.  This sets the bar high and rightly so to prevent a committed minority being able to force through a motion with the approval of less than 30% (50% of the 60% of registered voters) of the total electorate.

It is no easy task to motivate so many people to come out to vote. That’s why Oceana moved precipitously before it was really ready in order to try and have the referendum held on the same day as municipal elections.  Since many people will be coming out to vote anyway, Oceana calculated that this would increase its chance of reaching the 60% minimum referendum turnout required by law.  Many members of the original coalition disagreed with the timing of handing in the petition realizing that they did not have a large enough buffer of signatures to ensure that the number of valid signatures would reach the magic 10% of the electorate.   Now, Oceana is realizing that they may have been right and that it may have miscalculated.  Since there has been the usual flurry of new registrations in preparation for municipal and possibly general elections, the number of required signatures may now actually be higher than 17,000.  If only 6% of the 18,000 signatures are disallowed, then Oceana will have failed to reach even the 17,000 trigger point required.  It is quite probable that this will in fact happen since it is quite likely that many of the people, who signed the petition, are not registered voters and that several persons signed the petition more than once. This is not to suggest a deliberate attempt at fraud but rather expectations of a normal range of human error. The VP of Oceana must have come to the same conclusion but rather than admit to her error, she has started to raise concerns about “who pee peed on the floor”.  She has started to question the professionalism of the Elections and Boundaries personnel and imply that the only reason that the audit might find that the number of valid signatures accompanying the petition does not reach the 10% minimum is that there has been political interference.

We have to wait until Elections and Boundaries has completed the audit but it really should not surprise anyone if 5 or 6% of the signatures are disallowed.  It will not be a sign of political interference but rather of miscalculation on Oceana’s part.  If a puddle is found on the floor, the incontinent culprit responsible will not be Elections and Boundaries personnel but rather an impatient Oceana who, like many a toddler, just could not wait.

-1 10 0 56 1/19/2012 06:00:00 62 0/0/0000 00:00:00 0 0 0/0/0000 00:00:00 1/19/2012 06:00:00 0/0/0000 00:00:00 show_title= link_titles= show_intro= show_section= link_section= show_category= link_category= show_vote= show_author= show_create_date= show_modify_date= show_pdf_icon= show_print_icon= show_email_icon= language= keyref= readmore= 1 0 1 0 170 robots= author= 4306 Education maintains lead in Interoffice Softball education-maintains-lead-in-interoffice-softball

PitcherThe Belize City Interoffice Softball Competition continued on Friday January 13, 2012, at Rogers Stadium with two games on the schedule. In the first game played, Kit Kat Baaba Shap defeated its sister team Baaba Shap Kit Kat by the score of 14-7. 


Kit Kat Baaba Shap scored 5 runs in the bottom of the 1st inning, added 3 more runs in the bottom of the 2nd inning, 1 run in the 4th inning and 5 more runs in the 5th inning for the victory. Meanwhile, Baaba Shap Kit Kat scored 1 run in the top of the 4th inning, and 6 runs in the 5th inning, but came up short in the end.

Kit Kat Baaba Shap collected 9 hits. The key for the Kit Kat Baaba Shap squad was shortstop Lenard Linares, who drove in 3 of the 14 runs, while Baaba Shap Kit Kat collected 5 hits, but it received 6 bases-on-balls.

The winning pitcher was Jumoke Castro and the losing pitcher was Luigi Zaldivar.

In the second game of the evening, Education continued on its winning streak when it defeated the Police by the score of 11-3. Education scored 11 runs on 8 hits including catcher Fiona Rivero’s 3-run triple in the top of the 4th inning. Meanwhile, the Police squad was held to just 3 runs on 8 hits.

The winning pitcher for Education was Joel Wade and the losing pitcher was Dennis Myles.

The competition also continued on Wednesday January 11, between Kit Kat Baaba Shap and Telemedia. After 8 full innings, it was Kit Kat Baaba Shap that edged Telemedia in extra innings by the score of 15-14.

Kit Kat Baaba Shap was the first to get on the scoreboard when it scored 4 runs in the bottom of the 1st inning, added 3 more runs in the 2nd and 2 more runs in the 3rd inning off Telemedia’s starting pitcher, Bernard Pitts before he departed from the mound. Meanwhile, Telemedia batting in the top of the 4th inning scored 7 runs off Kit Kat Baaba Shap starting pitcher Jumoko Castro to cut the deficit to just 2 runs.

In the bottom of the 4th inning, Kit Kat Baaba Shap added a single run to extend its lead to 3 runs, but Telemedia scored 2 more runs in the top of the 5th inning to pull within a run of the game.

Trying to find some breathing room between itself and the charging Telemedia, Kit Kat Baaba Shap scored 3 more runs in the bottom of the 6th inning, but it was not enough, as the curtains came tumbling down in the top of the 7th inning when Telemedia tallied 4 more runs to tie the game at 13. The key blow was catcher Luis Alpuche’s 2-out 2-run double off the left- centre field fence.

In the 8th inning, Telemedia was able to score a single run while Kit Kat Baaba Shap scored 2 runs for the late innings dramatic win.

The winning pitcher was Shantel Flowers and the losing pitcher was Shanti Roches.

-1 1 0 41 1/19/2012 06:00:00 62 0/0/0000 00:00:00 0 0 0/0/0000 00:00:00 1/19/2012 06:00:00 0/0/0000 00:00:00 show_title= link_titles= show_intro= show_section= link_section= show_category= link_category= show_vote= show_author= show_create_date= show_modify_date= show_pdf_icon= show_print_icon= show_email_icon= language= keyref= readmore= 1 0 3 0 681 robots= author= 4307 Belize City Primary schools Basketball Competition open belize-city-primary-schools-basketball-competition-open

The Belize City Primary Schools Basketball Competition opened on Monday January 16, at the Belize City Centre.

In the only game played on the schedule, Queen Street Baptist boys defeated Holy Redeemer School by the score of 19-18. The top scorer for Queen Square Baptist was Denmark Gill with 6 points, while the top scorer for Holy Redeemer School was Elden Gladden with 8 points.

On Tuesday January 17, in the only female game played, St. Martin De Porres defeated Ephesus Seventh Day Adventist School by the score of 13-4. The top scorer for St. Martin De Porres was Shantia Palacio with 9 points, and the top scorer for Ephesus Seventh Day Adventist School was Hasly Mejia with 4 points.

In the first of two male games played, St. Martin De Porres School also won over Ephesus Seventh Day Adventist by the score of 58-8. The top scorer for St. Martin De Porres was Clency Lopez with 19 points, while the top scorer for Ephesus was Antawn Palacio with 4 points.

In the second game, All Saints’ School won over Grace Primary School via the default route.

-1 1 0 41 1/19/2012 06:00:00 62 0/0/0000 00:00:00 0 0 0/0/0000 00:00:00 1/19/2012 06:00:00 0/0/0000 00:00:00 show_title= link_titles= show_intro= show_section= link_section= show_category= link_category= show_vote= show_author= show_create_date= show_modify_date= show_pdf_icon= show_print_icon= show_email_icon= language= keyref= readmore= 1 0 2 0 176 robots= author= 4308 Softball Federation calls for Junior Girls Softballers -softball-federation-calls-for-junior-girls-softballers

The Belize Softball Federation is calling all junior girls (born between 1993 and 1999) to try out for the National Junior Female Softball Team that is scheduled to represent Belize at the Central American Junior Championship in 2012.

Application forms can be picked up from Mrs. Lorna Longsworth in Independence Village, Mrs. Jerjett Thompson in Belmopan, Garbutt’s Service Station in Roaring Creek Village, Louis Ortega in Esperanza Village, the National Sports Council in Belize City, Ms. Carmita Williams in Orange Walk Town, Mrs. Pamela Fitzgibbon in Lord’s Bank and from the Belize Softball Federation in Belize City.

Junior softballers must present a copy of birth certificate, passport or Social Security Card as proof of birth date.

-1 1 0 41 1/19/2012 06:00:00 62 0/0/0000 00:00:00 0 0 0/0/0000 00:00:00 1/19/2012 06:00:00 0/0/0000 00:00:00 show_title= link_titles= show_intro= show_section= link_section= show_category= link_category= show_vote= show_author= show_create_date= show_modify_date= show_pdf_icon= show_print_icon= show_email_icon= language= keyref= readmore= 1 0 1 0 158 robots= author= 4309 SSB Loans that were written off ssb-loans-that-were-written-off

SSB Loans that were written off

Under $20,000

1 Veronica Aden
2 Leonie Hernandez Almendarez
3 Javier Alpuche
4 Wyonie & Claud Belisle Alvarez
5 Phyllis Alvarez
6 Ursula Andrews
7 Myrna Arana
8 Jose Arango
9 Sylvia  Arnold
10 Pearl W. & Cynthia Nunez Arzu
11 Pearl  Arzu
12 Christine Witty Arzu
13 Edna Audinett
14 Ernest August
15 Linsford & Benguche Augustine
16 Lavern Austin
17 Dina Elizabeth Avelar
18 Francisco & Ismael Avelar
19 Lucy Avila
20 Audelio Awayo
21 Ofelia Babb
22 Sylvia  Bahadur
23 Carolina Bahadur
24 Deon & Juanita Zetina Bailey
25 Barbara Kathleen Baltazar
26 Thomas Baltazar
27 Robert Banner
28 Calvin Banner
29 Francisca Banner
30 Clara Baqium
31 Bernadine Barrow
32 Margaret Batty
33 Teodosa Batty
34 Kevin Eugene Bautista
35 Lindsay Belisle
36 Michael & Sandra Bennett
37 Olivette Bennett
38 Andrew & Catherine Bermudez
39 Francis B. Bermudez Jr.
40 Joseph Bernard
41 Sharon Bernardez
42 David Bernardez
43 Deborah Bevans
44 Yvonne Bevans
45 Darlene Elizabeth Blease
46 Blanca & Xiomara Lopez Bonel
47 Leonora Bonnell
48 Dalton Hewitt Bowden
49 Rudolph Bowen
50 Herman Bradley
51 Brendon Brooks
52 Elsworth Brown
53 Rose Brown
54 Brenda Buckley
55 Audrey Budd
56 Carol Brown Bulwer
57 Janet Cain
58 Misael Campos
59 Hipolito Canto
60 Bartola Cardinez
61 Margaret Elizabeth Cargill
62 Marjorie Carr
63 Rita Rosa (Rosita) Carrillo
64 Noe Abimael Carrillo
65 Hilberto Casildo
66 Elizabeth & Victor Cassanova
67 Dalila & Raul Castillo
68 Faye A. Castillo
69 Maria Castillo
70 Norma Jane Castillo
71 Sandra Cattouse
72 Hortencio & Maria Cawich
73 Lorna Cayetano
74 Jacqueline Champagne
75 Humberto & Maria Rivera Chan
76 Jovita Chan
77 Vilma & Arnaldo Chan
78 Peter Chavarria Jr.
79 Ramy Chia
80 Armando Cobb
81 Luciano Cobb
82 Thomas A. Coc
83 Dalton  Coote
84 Hilario (Juan) Copo
85 Aurora Cowo
86 Ruth & Alice Mae Smith Craig
87 Orwson Crawford
88 Lisbeth Crawford
89 Wilibardo Cruz
90 Audulia Cruz
91 Marie Cuellar
92 Olivia  Dakers
93 Maxine Davis
94 Elsa (Mas) & Karen Dawson
95 Shirley Dawson
96 Zoila Diaz
97 Sandra Diaz
98 Julin Diego
99 Cheryl Dixon
100 Julia Dominguez
101 Augustina Elijio
102 Augustus Ellis
103 Cynthia Ellis
104 Michael Emmanuel
105 Loretta & Aurelio Escalante
106 Anna & Jesus Espinoza
107 Errolyn Felix
108 Mervin & Bernard Jean Ferguson
109 Tanya Tiffany Ferguson
110 Rosita Flowers
111 Sydney & Joan Flowers
112 Linden & Donalee Flowers
113 Velda  Flowers
114 Glenda Ferguson Flowers
115 Norland Flowers
116 Lisa Forbes
117 Phillipa Ford
118 Louise Foreman
119 Camella Franklin
120 Josephine Gabourel
121 Alejandro & Dorla Galvez
122 Michelle Garbutt
123 Roger & Melissa Garbutt
124 Raymond Garcia
125 Loretta & Vincent Palacio Garcia
126 Denise Gentle
127 Estevan Gentle
128 Said Gillett
129 Sylvia  Gillett
130 Dennis Gladden
131 Albina Gomez
132 Kathleen Gotoy
133 Dorla & Colin Grant
134 Versini Marie Guerrero
135 Zita Gutierrez
136 Catalina Guzman
137 Telford Guzman
138 Rosita A. Hall
139 Teresita Hall
140 Samuel & Melany Hall Jr.
141 Barrington Hamilton
142 Olive Reynaud Hampton
143 Scott & Isabel Haylock
144 Gareth Hemmans
145 Esmie Hemmans
146 Constance Henderson
147 Araceli Hernandez
148 Isolene Herrera
149 Shirlett Aden Hill
150 Linda Humphreys
151 Alfonso & Violeta Iglesias
152 Margaret & Carel Jenkins
153 Margaret Jex
154 Antonio R. Jimenez
155 Jeaneth Barbara Jones
156 Diana Jones
157 Leslie & Jennifer Jones
158 Hemsley & Betty Ann Jones
159 Harold & Marjorie Jordan
160 Keith & Judith  Joseph
161 Alejandro  Keme
162 Amelia Kerr
163 Imogene Kerr
164 Sandra  Kingston
165 Laura Lainez
166 Lorna Lamb
167 Dayna Lambert
168 Dawn Marie Lambey
169 Alberto Lanza
170 Leonetta Lauriano
171 Shaherah Lemott
172 Philip & Louise Elliott Leslie
173 Domingo & Alice Lewis
174 Ethlyn Lewis
175 Pauline Staine Liggins
176 Adolfo & Eugenio Lino
177 Natalio & Florencio Lisbey
178 Ruby Lodge
179 Margarito Lopez
180 Reyna Lopez
181 Irma Lopez
182 Yvette Mahung
183 Anabella Mahung
184 Laura Mai
185 Jose Antonio Marenco
186 Judith Mariano
187 Marion Barbara Martinez
188 Franklin Martinez
189 Cesar & Myra Martinez
190 Elsa  Mas
191 Suzette Massiah
192 Orlando  Matu
193 Shelmadine Matura
194 Delsie Mcfarlane
195 Carolyn Mckenzie
196 Irene Meighan
197 Gloria Meighan
198 David Mejia
199 Fidelis Mejia
200 Sandra Miranda
201 Diana Vivas Montejo
202 Anna Racheal Montejo
203 Israel Mora
204 Mirta Iris Moreno
205 Patrick & Catherine Morgan
206 Antonette Morgan
207 Bambi Morris
208 Diana  Morris
209 Radiance Morter
210 Robert Mossiah
211 Shelma Dean Mossiah
212 Wilma Munnings
213 Elma Myers
214 Desiree Myvette
215 Guadalupe Narvaez
216 Mark & Valerie Baptist Neal
217 Arthur Neal
218 Calvin Hyde Neal
219 Denise & Delfin Munoz Neal
220 Denise Neal
221 Caesar & Diana Bainton Noble
222 Lorna Noralez
223 Jean Noralez
224 Romanda & Frederick Novelo
225 Rosalia Novelo
226 Eunice Nunez
227 Yvonne Ogaldez
228 Cynthia & Nicolas Olmedo
229 Beth Palacio
230 James Palacio
231 Dotsie Emelia Palacio
232 Oscar Palma
233 Herbert & Margaret Panton
234 John & Marcella Patt
235 John & Adelie Patt
236 Elias Anselmo Pech Jr.
237 Rubicela & Cawich, M Pena
238 Francis & Catherine Perez
239 Isoleen Perriott
240 Judith Petillo
241 Demetria Pineda
242 Karla Hope Pollard
243 Manuel Puc
244 Antonia Quinonez
245 Amanda Quiroz
246 Celia Ramclam
247 Alfred Ramsey
248 Lester & Rose Rancharan
249 Cecil Ranguy
250 Luis Requena
251 Alba Requena
252 Orlando  Reyes
253 Susan Sharlene Reyes
254 Angela (Ruel Hall) Reyes
255 Antonio & Therese Reymundo
256 Hortence  Reynolds
257 Joan Robateau
258 Glen  Robateau
259 Dorothy Roca
260 Pauline Romero Rodriguez
261 Erene Rodriguez
262 Eva Romero
263 Elizabeth & S. Dominguez Rosado
264 Esmi Mendez & Alfonso Rosado
265 Helmut Roth
266 Daniel Ruiz
267 Mark (Chaneb) Sabal
268 Edwin Norberto Sanchez
269 Orlando  Santos
270 Florence Santos
271 Paul Schmidt
272 Ann Marie Smith
273 Diane Kim Smith
274 Winford Smith
275 Shawn  Smith
276 Lorne & Rosita Solis
277 Carlos & Merlene Staine
278 Sarita Stamp
279 William  Stephens
280 Emmanuel Herman Stuart
281 Edna Stuart
282 Claudette Stuart
283 Eleanor Sutherland
284 Dawn  Sutherland
285 Phillipa (Felipa) Sutherland
286 Chester Sutherland
287 Karen Swasey
288 Melva & Calvin Rosalez Tamay
289 Jose  Tesucum
290 Robert Theus
291 Gilda Ruth Tillett
292 Manuela Toledano
293 Sergio Trujillo
294 Zaida Trujillo
295 Alfredo Tun
296 Elizabeth Underwood
297 Monica Urbina
298 Noemi Sarita  Urbina
299 Raymond Usher
300 Dawn Louretta Usher
301 Dawn Dyanne Usher
302 Joy Usher
303 Angela Morris Usher
304 Ruben Vasquez
305 Olivia  Vasquez
306 Lorna Mae Vaughan
307 Maria Soila Verde
308 Gloria Villafranco
309 Wilfredo Wade
310 Lloyd Welch
311 Hilario Wewe
312 Marie & Ellorine Williams
313 Melvyn Rodonell Williams
314 Lyle & Elsie Williams
315 Hipolito (Pedro) Yah
316 Rosa Yearwood
317 Marjorie Young
318 Creslyn Young
319 Marie Ysaguirre
320 Adelita Zaiden
321 Manuel Zelaya
322 Norma Zetina
323 Lourdes Zuniga
324 Emily Zuniga
325 Egzine Lucas Zuniga

$20,000 - $30,000

1 Eloisa Acosta
2 Jimmy & Ruby Ake
3 Hilberto Aragon
4 Mauren Louise Armstrong
5 Candie Lettitia Arnold
6 Carolyn Arnold
7 Emerita  Ascoli
8 Aloma Ashon
9 Roland & Hazel Augustine
10 Sherlett Augustus
11 Javier & Lenira Avila
12 Rudy Avila
13 George & Sherlene Bainton
14 Gilroy & Irma Jones Baptist
15 Laura & G Middleton Baptist Sr.
16 Rosalie Jones Belisle
17 Marva Benjamin
18 Anna Bennett
19 Remus & Elenita Betancourt
20 Wellton& Indira Rowland Bowen
21 Darren & Minerva Brown
22 Elsie & Barbara B. Burgess
23 Fay Butler
24 Daniel Cacho
25 Dennis Cadle
26 Therese Canaque
27 Anjony Canul
28 Yvonne Casimiro
29 Egbert & Pauline Castillo
30 Esteline Castillo
31 Omar Chuc
32 Maria Elena Contreras
33 Rose Marie Crawford
34 Judith Dawson
35 Daphne Elizabeth Dillett
36 Martha & Nerrie Gladden Dixon
37 Diana Dorado
38 Elizabeth Dunn
39 Raymond Dunn
40 Joseph & Lauren Burgess Eagan
41 Diana Staine Enriquez
42 Bernadette Ann Ferguson
43 Leonia Duncan Fitzgibbon
44 Austin  Flores
45 Gregory Anthony Flores
46 Wilma & Robert Mossiah Flowers
47 Clement & B. Tillman Flowers
48 Janet Ford
49 Georgia Franklin
50 Cheryl Gabourel
51 Rosalee Sampson Gamboa
52 Sherwin Garcia
53 Paul Garcia
54 Carla Garnett
55 Sarita & Edward Garnett
56 Albert  Garrett
57 Andrew & Keisha Lord Gentle
58 Stephen Gillett
59 Louise & Roland Small Gillett
60 Ernest & Andrea Gladden
61 Vinette Gladden
62 Robert Godfrey
63 Martha Santiago Godoy
64 Olia Gomez
65 Miguel Gongora
66 Mario Gonzalez
67 Audrey  Grinage
68 John Grinage
69 Lena Gutierrez
70 Mark Glen  Guzman
71 Barbara  Guzman
72 Flora  Hernandez
73 Thomas & Catherine E Hernandez
74 Sofia & Fidelmar  Hernandez
75 Octavio Juan Hernandez Sr.
76 Denise Hodges
77 William Hope
78 Rodney Hugh Hulse
79 Catalina Hurst
80 Josephine Jones
81 Paul & Margaret Jones
82 Randy Joseph
83 Patricia Kelly
84 Lisa Kerr
85 Minerva  Lanza
86 Mardonio Leiva
87 Sherna Leonard
88 Sonia Lewis
89 Therese & Ernest Lightburn
90 Vincent  Lisbey
91 Dolores Locario
92 Yvonne & Irvin Longsworth
93 Hazel Lord
94 Elizardo & Marjeli Manzanilla
95 Solomon Marin
96 Estelle & Anna Martin
97 Albert & Mary Martinez
98 Matthew Martinez
99 Ken & Mary Ann Martinez
100 Enid & Villanueva Martinez
101 Raphael Martinez
102 Lisa Gabb Mayen
103 Glenn Mcdonald
104 Sharon Mckay
105 Ann S. Mckoy
106 Orlando Medina
107 Irineo Mendez
108 Ada Menzies
109 Raymond Miguel
110 Leolin Miguel
111 Stephanie Milan
112 Ruben & Martha Morales
113 Myra Moreira
114 James Moses
115 Carol Moss
116 Abulee & Nicolee Muhammad
117 Tamma Myvett
118 Lloyd Neal
119 Francisca (Serano) Noralez
120 Amalia Shelley Novelo
121 Elsa Victoria Oliva
122 Ismael Ortiz
123 Vianney Paiz
124 Floyd Palacio
125 Derrick Parks
126 Diana Parks Wesby
127 Laura Pech
128 Calford & Dorla Perez
129 Jose Baldemar Perez
130 Irma & Zenna Burgos Perez
131 Sheryl  Pollard
132 Elston Pollard
133 Nicholas Pollard Jr. & Sr.
134 Linda Price
135 Sandra Quinteros
136 Emy Ramirez
137 Miguel Rancharan
138 Jose & Maria Rancharan
139 Wendy Reyes
140 Austin & Beverly Rhaburn
141 Elvira Rivas
142 Alain Robinson
143 Mae Florencia Rodriguez
144 Juliana Rodriguez
145 Rosa & Jose Antonio Romero
146 Richard Sabal
147 Emerita & Emory Samuels
148 Yvette Samuels
149 Sydney Samuels
150 Emelda Elizabeth Santos
151 John Alexander Sawyers
152 Jerome & Sharlene Sedacy
153 Narciso  Sedassie
154 Frances Flores Sentino
155 Michael & Joyce Simmons
156 Roselda Sinclaire
157 Lancelot & Florita Smith
158 Frank E. Paco Smith
159 Thelia Ursula Smith
160 Dawn  Smith
161 Jenolphy Smith
162 George Solis
163 Ellen Staine
164 Brenda & Robert Stevens
165 Allan Stuart Jr.
166 Dawn  Taylor
167 Francis E.  Thomas
168 Germaine Thompson
169 Lyndon Thompson
170 Sharon Thurton
171 Jose Toledano
172 Janet & Gloria Tucker
173 Leonard Usher
174 Leolyn Elma Valencia
175 Carlton Valentine
176 Lorraine Velasquez
177 Agnes Velasquez
178 Samuel Alexander Vernon
179 Melva & Linda Cox Vernon
180 Mertis Mae Villanueva
181 Leticia Josephine Waight
182 Jason Weatherburn
183 Jacob Joseph Westby
184 Doretha Westby
185 Christopher Williams
186 Aminta Williams
187 Carol (Bruce E. Moore) Williams
188 Barrette Woodye
189 Barbara  Young
190 Yvette Plunkett Young
191 Maria  Yuman
192 Public Service Union 

$30,000 - $40,000


1 Helen & Hubert Mejia Alvarez
2 Dean Aranda
3 Lawrence & Rosita Arnold
4 Orlando Avila
5 Libby Ayuso
6 Angel Anthony Baltazar
7 Delvorine Banner
8 Anthony Barnett Jr.
9 Hipolito Bautista
10 Sharon & Clive Flores Beeks
11 Earline Belisle
12 Tricia Bell
13 Samuel Blanco
14 Augusto Bochub
15 Tyrone & Juliana Bradley
16 Basil Brannon
17 Jody Brooks-Wagner
18 Elizabeth Pott Brown
19 Sharon  Bruce
20 Dorothy Louise Bryant
21 Cherry Buckley
22 Lorna Buckley
23 Ann Marie Buddan
24 Vanessa Burke
25 John  Busano
26 Donovan & Julia Cacho
27 Merlene Carr
28 Phillip Castillo
29 Dalila & Raul Castillo
30 Dana Cayetano
31 Sherane Chadwick
32 Althea & Thomas Chavarria
33 Protascia & Edilberto Chen
34 Israel Choc
35 Ermentino Coyock
36 Lloyd  Crawford
37 Bartolo Cruz
38 Dolores Cruz Burgess
39 Sharlet Danderson
40 Sharlett Dawson
41 Mervin  Domingo
42 Boris Dominguez
43 Alma Ellis
44 Joan & Lincoln Bennett Ellis
45 Denise Enriquez
46 Garry & Clara Enriquez
47 Myrtle & L. Lucario Fernandez
48 Carol Fisher
49 Antolino Flores
50 Albert Flores
51 Herman & Paulette  Flowers
52 Paul & Dorlene Flowers
53 Walton Flowers
54 George Foreman
55 Alden & Aurora Forte
56 Keith & Antonette Franklin
57 Michael & Therese Franklin
58 Kirk Gabb
59 Isidora Gallego
60 Marie & Geraldine Garbutt
61 Marvin & Georgina Garcia
62 Lynette Garnett
63 Evan Garnett
64 Joslyn Gill
65 Errol & Maggie Bowen Gill
66 Colin Gillett
67 Dalton & Antuanetta Gillett
68 Sandra  Gillett
69 Carl & Carla Cadle Gillett
70 Sandra Denise Goff
71 Alberto Gutierrez
72 Emily Guy
73 Edward & Jacqueline Hoare
74 Elston Hyde
75 Sylvia James
76 Anthony & Joyce Jang
77 David & Roxanne Jones
78 Pauline Jones
79 Stephanie Jones
80 George & Ferguson Paula Lamb
81 Windell & Apolonio Lemoth
82 Lloyd H. Lewis
83 Alice Nita Lewis
84 Domingo & Francis Lewis
85 Adrian Linares
86 Debbie Linares
87 Brian Lindo
88 Marina Liu
89 Janet Lopez
90 Patrick & Juanita Lorenzo
91 Sedella & Masha Lucas
92 Maureen Reyes Mahmud
93 Cecil & Sadie Laura Martinez
94 Ginel Martinez
95 Juliette (Sampson) Martinez
96 Tyoris & Romel Palacio Martinez
97 Soila & L. Augustine Martinez
98 Gustavo & Mari Matus
99 Albert Mccoy
100 Phillipa Shanda Mcdonald
101 Elaine & Leola Mckenzie
102 Louise & Nathalie Mckenzie
103 Shana Meighan
104 Angelica A. Mejia
105 Fredrick Michael
106 Idelfonso Moh
107 Giovanni & Escelia Molina
108 Cecilio Monima Jr.
109 Clay F. Monsanto
110 Denise Montero
111 Martha & David Moore
112 Aurora Morales
113 Wilma & F. Murillo Muninngs
114 Linsford & Rhoda Murillo
115 Sheila Louise Neal
116 Sharon Neal
117 Calvin Neal
118 Maureen Neal
119 Ianthe Parks Nicholas
120 Virginia Noralez
121 Leticia Novelo
122 Thelma Novelo
123 Angel Novelo
124 Adele Nunez
125 Erwin O'brien
126 Gayle Ozaeta
127 Theodore Parchue
128 Gustavo Pech
129 Judith Marie Perez
130 Alejandro Rafael Perez
131 Alexis  Perez
132 Jaime  Price
133 Addington Ramos
134 Mirja Evaluz Reyes
135 Alice & Stephen Rhaburn
136 Marlon & Pearline Rhaburn
137 Avelita Rhamdas
138 John & Elma Robateau
139 Dennis Robinson
140 Simeon Rodriguez
141 Leslie Rogers Sr.
142 Mona Lisa Rosado
143 Cadwell & Beverly Lee Samuels
144 Teresita Sanchez
145 William & Alice Savery
146 Ijideo Sedassie
147 Miguel Segura
148 Flora Serano
149 Narciso Sho
150 Wallace Slusher
151 Sherlette Diane Slusher
152 Janice Slusher
153 Tressa Smith
154 Angelita  Smith
155 Carla Smith
156 Darlena Soberanis
157 Shevaun Staine
158 Maurel Straughan
159 Geraldine Sutherland
160 Gilbert  Swazo
161 Marion & Glenda Flower Tablada
162 Kenworth Tate
163 Nelida Taylor
164 Conrad Thomas
165 Agnes Tillett
166 Rosenell (Jarette) Tillett
167 Lisa Torres
168 Diana & Sharmaine Trujeque
169 Jeanette Usher
170 Carol Vivas
171 Fabiana & Louis  Wade
172 Maureen Waight
173 Ismelda Waite
174 Derrick Watters
175 Kevin Williams
176 Maurice Alexander   Williams
177 Avis Williams
178 Ernesto & Gregorio C Wiltshire
179 Monica  Yorke
180 Barbara Zelaya
181 Belizean Textiles Ltd 

$40,000 - $50,000

1 Janice Assales
2 Randy Avila
3 Rosita Luz Balderamos
4 Videla Barela
5 Everald & Enita Barrett
6 Laurie  Barrow
7 William & Desly Black
8 Oswald Bowman
9 Oswald Bowman
10 Andrew Bradley
11 Amalio & Zuheli  Briceno
12 Adelma  Broaster
13 Elizabeth Cal
14 John & Delcia Ciego Castillo
15 Filiberto Cawich
16 Andrew Chavez
17 Limberg Chavez
18 Jorge & Gina Marie Chi
19 Luis Cho
20 Leticia  Correa
21 Gladys Cruz
22 Desiree  Daniels
23 Dorothy Flores
24 Barbara Kathleen Frazer
25 Maureen & Hemsley, Velda R  Gill
26 Gregory & Moses, Paulin Henderson
27 Sean  Howard
28 Chester Humes Sr.
29 David  Jones
30 Lincoln Jones
31 Mary Jones
32 Seleni  Lanza
33 Phyllis Lightburn
34 Sharlett Lightfoot Nicholas
35 Ambrosia Lino
36 Martin & Renita  Lino
37 Neria Lizama
38 Sylvin  Lovell
39 Ernilda Maheia
40 Mark & Nafeesa Major
41 Umberto Martinez
42 Paul Mccullock
43 Carlton  McKoy
44 Pamela Medina
45 Frank Mendez
46 Earl & Chana Martin Middleton
47 David & Venice Moody
48 Adalia Mossiah
49 Patricia Norris
50 Emir Novelo
51 Pastor Novelo
52 Francis & Laverne Palacio Jr.
53 Raul & Maribel  Pariente
54 Phillip  Parks
55 Lisa Perdomo
56 Godfrey  Pook
57 Judith Puc
58 Yamira Reyes
59 Caren Marie Robinson
60 Edith  Rodriguez
61 Roselle Rodriguez
62 Anthony & Charles Rowley
63 Calbert Santiago
64 Alton Sebastian
65 Karama  Shoman
66 Lorin  Smith
67 Mark & Elizabeth Smith
68 Jason Smith
69 Eugene & Michelle Smith
70 Desiree Cain Smith
71 Ruben & Julie Sosa
72 Gilbert & Lorene Sacasa Swazo
73 Clarette  Tathum
74 Kirk & Shannon  Thompson
75 Amilsa Myrna Thompson
76 Elroy & Sonia  Tillett
77 Gilda Tillett
78 Angela  Usher
79 Petrona Usher
80 Marina & Jason Vasquez
81 Shirley Hinds Williams
82 Shirley Wright
 

Heritage Bank Loans

1 Heritage Bank Loans
2 Marva Armstrong
3 FlorentinoAzueta
4 Therese Flores
5 Georgia Grant
6 Pauline Hamilton
7 David Haylock
8 Allyson Hulse
9 Viola Hyde
10 Pamela Lord
11 Eric Neal
12 Flora Sanker
13 Sheldon Servio
14 Karen Smith
15 Amanda Tucker
15 Lloyd Welch
16 Joyce Wilson
17 Steve Young

UDP ALWAYS FOR THE PEOPLE 

 

 



 


 

 

-1 6 0 53 1/19/2012 06:00:00 62 1/19/2012 21:22:48 64 0 0/0/0000 00:00:00 1/19/2012 06:00:00 0/0/0000 00:00:00 show_title= link_titles= show_intro= show_section= link_section= show_category= link_category= show_vote= show_author= show_create_date= show_modify_date= show_pdf_icon= show_print_icon= show_email_icon= language= keyref= readmore= 2 0 2 0 4365 robots= author= 4310 Lower Water Rates lower-water-rates-

(LeftOn Tuesday January 24th ,the Public Utilities Commission called a press conference in which it announced a 7.2% reduction in water rates. The announcement comes a couple of weeks after the PUC also announced that electricity rates would be going down by 6.14%.


In making the announcement Chairman of the PUC, John Avery, explained that the decision comes after careful review of the company’s financials, investments, rate of return and other considerations. In his explanation,  Avery said that one of the major motivators for the rate reduction is that BWS had, in the last full tariff review proceedings, applied for 116 million dollars in investments, which the company was to make. After consideration at that time the PUC decided to allow for 56 million dollars in investment however, an independent expert further reduced that figure to 40.45 million dollars, which chairman Avery says the company was still unable to meet.

His rationale now is that because the company was unable to meet the investment schedule, the PUC needs to stimulate BWS into doing so. He said that BWS has claimed that it has problems with accessing capital to do so to which the chairman explained that in the past, the company has been able to do so and must now go back to doing the same and be more aggressive in it. The PUC chairman says that the financing should be directed at expanding and upgrading existing production facilities.

Additionally, the rate of return for the company was reduced to 8% after it was previously approved to 12.1%. The return, said Avery, was enough for the company to meet its debt obligations, which have percentage averages of interest well below the 8% figure. With that, the commission came up with the 7.2% reduction. This will translate to savings of 62 cents for those consuming water only in the mainland, which will go from $8.62 for a thousand gallons or less in consumption to $8.00. Similar changes will take place in Belmopan and Belize City where there are Water and Sewage connections with the price going from $10.34 to $9.60. The reduction will also take place on San Pedro with the prices going from $25.27 to $23.45. The only location where the rates will not be changed is in Caye Caulker where the water system has not been performing as expected as residents on the island continue to use well water sources.   

BWS or consumers of 10% or more of water produced have 15 days from the date of the announcement to make comments or make objections. If none is forthcoming, then the current decision will become a final one by the 8th of February.

On a side note, PUC Chairman John Avery explained that they have not yet received any objections to the rates by Belize Electricity Limited. The Prime Minister, Hon. Dean Barrow has publicly stated that the government is inclined to accept the PUC’s decision and implement lower electricity rates after the process is complete.  Through the lowering of electricity rates, over 1000 persons will be added to the list of people, who access electricity at a social rate. That rate stands at 26 cents per kilowatt hour and will be going down to 24 cents per kilowatt hour come February 1. -1 6 0 54 1/26/2012 06:00:00 62 0/0/0000 00:00:00 0 0 0/0/0000 00:00:00 1/26/2012 06:00:00 0/0/0000 00:00:00 show_title= link_titles= show_intro= show_section= link_section= show_category= link_category= show_vote= show_author= show_create_date= show_modify_date= show_pdf_icon= show_print_icon= show_email_icon= language= keyref= readmore= 1 0 1 0 795 robots= author= 4311 Corozal North Ready for Elections! corozal-north-ready-for-elections

CorozalPrime Minister Dean Barrow made an official visit to Cristo Rey Village on Sunday, January 22. Residents of Cristo Rey and other villages in Corozal North came out in impressive numbers to express their gratitude to PM Barrow and the United Democratic Party’s administration. One resident said, “We simply want to let the Prime Minister know that we are with him and we will be ready anytime the election is called.”


PM Barrow arrived at the San Pedro Village/Northern Highway junction shortly after 2:30 p.m. and was greeted heartily by men, women and children of the village. They then escorted him in a motorcade to the Cristo Rey Village Community Park where a couple thousand supporters welcomed him. A local marching band played The Heroes Salute and others waved their UDP and Belize flags. Some held signs thanking him for various government programs that benefitted their lives. One sign said, “What the PUP couldn’t do in 10 years the UDP did in 3.”

The official ceremony started at 3 p.m. and the Prime Minister was joined on stage by other UDP members of the House and Standard Bearers. The two individuals, who received applauses comparable to that of PM Barrow, were Hon. Nemencio Acosta, Area Representative for Corozal North, and Hugo Patt, UDP Standard Bearer for Corozal North. Acosta offered his full support to Patt. He said that the PUP neglected the constituency for years and Corozal North must never go back to them.Patt has been working hard in the area and residents have opened up to him. They are grateful to the government for its acts to save and improve the sugar industry. Majority of the people of Corozal North benefit directly or indirectly from the sugar industry. The exact significance of government’s intervention to save the industry can only be understood by those living in the North. Patt promised to continue fighting on behalf of the people of Corozal North and asked residents to support him in his bid to be their Area Representative.

Patt was also endorsed by executives of the United Democratic Party. Deputy Party Leader, Hon. Gaspar Vega, gave him his full support and said that he looks forward to working with him as another Representative of the House from the North. Constituencies of the northern districts really have one pulse and collaboration between leaders of the area is extremely important. Party Chairman, Hon. Patrick Faber, gave residents a sense of the political climate across the country. He said that it was not only in Corozal North that Belizeans were benefitting from government’s programs. All across the country people are being relieved of financial burdens and they are receiving opportunities to improve their standard of living. That is why people turned out in record numbers when the UDP was holding conventions across the country. The people of Belize are prepared to return the UDP to Belmopan when elections are called. 

Prime Minister Barrow thanked the residents for their extremely warm reception. He said, “This has been the best reception I have received in many years.” Once again PM Barrow did most of his speech in Spanish. He highlighted the social programs introduced by this government. Those include the food pantry program the conditional cash transfer, and the apprenticeship program among others. He explained that it is the United Democratic Party that has implemented George Price’s vision and is the true party of social justice. Someone from the crowd said, “If he was alive today even George Price would have been a UDP.” Prime Minister Barrow said that for him the event was “very exciting”.

-1 6 0 53 1/26/2012 06:00:00 64 Shane D. Williams 0/0/0000 00:00:00 0 0 0/0/0000 00:00:00 1/26/2012 06:00:00 0/0/0000 00:00:00 show_title= link_titles= show_intro= show_section= link_section= show_category= link_category= show_vote= show_author= show_create_date= show_modify_date= show_pdf_icon= show_print_icon= show_email_icon= language= keyref= readmore= 1 0 2 0 4112 robots= author= 4312 GOB must pay $33,537,066.66 Feb 20 - Thanks to PUP gob-must-pay-3353706666-feb-20-thanks-to-pup

Another choking Superbond payment is due on Friday February 20th. This time, the payment has reached an incredible BZ$33,537,066.66. Payments for the Superbond began on February 20th, 2007 at an interest rate of 4%. Now, the interest rate is at 6% and by August 20th, the interest rate will go up to 8.5%. Every year, two payments need to be made on interest alone and those payments are due on February 20th and August 20th of every single year up to 2029.


The original amount of the Superbond is $1,093,600,000 that is, One Billion, ninety three million, six hundred thousand Belize dollars. That represents principal alone. By the time we are done paying the bond, it would have been $1,588,590,700 that is, One Billion, five hundred and eighty eight million five hundred and ninety thousand seven hundred dollars. Interest alone on the bond is $494,990,700, that is four hundred ninety- four million nine hundred and ninety thousand seven hundred dollars.

With all that debt, there is not a single viable project that the People’s United Party can point to and say the money was used for. What they can do is look at instances like the failed 94-million dollar Mahogany Heights project; the $40 million dollar Soybean Project that never took off the ground; the 10 million dollar Intelco computer project; the failed housing projects; and countless other projects of the PUP and say that is what we are paying for.

If anyone was to lose their mind and for a second consider to vote for the PUP, consider that they indebted the country to the tune of One Billion, five hundred and eighty eight million five hundred and ninety thousand seven hundred dollars and we have nothing to show for it. That is the Superbond legacy of the PUP.

-1 6 0 53 1/26/2012 06:00:00 62 0/0/0000 00:00:00 0 0 0/0/0000 00:00:00 1/26/2012 06:00:00 0/0/0000 00:00:00 show_title= link_titles= show_intro= show_section= link_section= show_category= link_category= show_vote= show_author= show_create_date= show_modify_date= show_pdf_icon= show_print_icon= show_email_icon= language= keyref= readmore= 1 0 1 0 2961 robots= author= 4313 Contracts signed for Canal Lining, Jane Usher Blvd. and Pen Road Paving contracts-signed-for-canal-lining-jane-usher-blvd-and-pen-road-paving

MinisterOn Monday, January 20, Hon. Anthony “Boots” Martinez, Minister of Works, signed three contracts under Phase 2 of the Southside Poverty Alleviation Project that will significantly upgrade the infrastructure of Belize City and provide jobs for city residents.


The first contract was signed with Cisco Constructions, for the dredging and lining of Collet Canal from Conch Shell Bay to Yarborough Bridge and the dredging and lining of North Creek Canal.The project will cost $9.8 million and includes the widening and paving of adjacent streets along East and West Collet Canal.

The second contract is for the paving of Neal’s Pen Road from its junction with Fabers Road to its intersection at Yarborough Bridge. That contract was signed with A & N Construction for $2.7 million and includes the construction of reinforced concrete sidewalks and side drains. The third contract was signed with A & N Construction as well and it is for the long awaited paving of Jane Usher Boulevard. That project includes street realignment, sidewalk construction and an extensive drainage component. The side drains in the Jane Usher area will be connected to adjacent canals in order to reduce water build up. That project will cost $1.7 million.

The paving of Jane Usher Boulevard was originally included in Phase 1 of the Southside Poverty Alleviation Project but was delayed because of the presence of squatters on the road reserve. That situation has been dealt with and now the project is ready to take off. Minister Martinez said, “I am extremely happy for the people of Belize City and in particular my people of Port Loyola. I thank them for their patience.” Half of Neal’s Pen Road is in Port Loyola; Jane Usher Boulevard is in Port Loyola and Collet Canal stretches across Port Loyola.

Works will commence in two weeks and the projects will take about a year to complete. The Southside Poverty Alleviation Project – Phase 2 is funded jointly by the OPEC Fund for International Development (OFID) and the Government of Belize.

-1 1 0 40 1/26/2012 06:00:00 64 Shane D. Williams 0/0/0000 00:00:00 0 0 0/0/0000 00:00:00 1/26/2012 06:00:00 0/0/0000 00:00:00 show_title= link_titles= show_intro= show_section= link_section= show_category= link_category= show_vote= show_author= show_create_date= show_modify_date= show_pdf_icon= show_print_icon= show_email_icon= language= keyref= readmore= 1 0 10 0 1391 robots= author= 4314 VIP and PNP are against SSB Mortgage write offs vip-and-pnp-are-against-ssb-mortgage-write-offs

VIPIf you speak to any of the 782 persons who received a government write off on their Social Security Board loans, they would tell you that they are excessively happy and grateful that the UDP government for writing off their mortgages. In fact, they will tell you that a great burden has been taken off their shoulders and would find many useful things to do with the money that they will be saving. But don’t tell that to the VIP and the PNP, who by the way number at less than 10 in combination who will run for both the municipal and general elections.

They held a press conference on Tuesday January 24th in which they stated that they were against people receiving write offs. These wanna-be leaders don’t want the 782 Belizeans to benefit from the program and would rather these houses to be sold off and the families who live there to be homeless. This is the kind of narrow minded and uncaring nature of the PNP and VIP. Bobby Lopez (we are not sure what post he holds in the VIP or where he  is running) told the media as much during the press conference. He ranted and raved that by some strange occurrence, people who have mortgages at the commercial banks will default on their payments because of the write offs. To him we say: get a clue! After exhausting that topic to almost having lost his breath, he went on to other topics.

One such topic, which he broached, was that of a reregistration process. He must certainly have just woken from his political slumber and has realized that this year there will be two elections, the Municipals, and the General. Lopez, as obtuse and clueless as he is, says that there is a rumor that the General Elections will be called this year. Hello… Bobby, the elections will be called this year! Had you been paying attention, you would have known this and would have done some work to get some people registered to vote for you. Now he comes with this great idea of having a re-registration take place. Obviously, he has no idea of what such a process would entail or how much it would cost. It would appear that this man has not been hearing what the Prime Minister has been saying all along, that is that there will be a General Election this year. For him to wake up out of his great slumber and ask for a re-registration just shows how much of a political dunce he is. A word of advice to those who sit beside him at head tables: the illness he has may very well rub off on you, or maybe it is that the illness in endemic to all of you. Whatever the case, if you don’t know, there will be two elections this year and that does not allow for a re-registration process to take place.

Other than those topics, there were others who spoke whom we did not recognize. Their topics were irrelevant to anything so we will not occupy space in this paper to write about them.
Try again next time. Hint: make sure that you do it in a timely fashion so as not to expose how politically ignorant you are.

-1 1 0 40 1/26/2012 06:00:00 62 1/26/2012 17:38:12 64 0 0/0/0000 00:00:00 1/26/2012 06:00:00 0/0/0000 00:00:00 show_title= link_titles= show_intro= show_section= link_section= show_category= link_category= show_vote= show_author= show_create_date= show_modify_date= show_pdf_icon= show_print_icon= show_email_icon= language= keyref= readmore= 2 0 9 0 1903 robots= author= 4315 PUPs playing the fools pups-playing-the-fools

Everyone looked on in awe last week Wednesday when the PUP held a press conference to talk about everything they think is going wrong in the country of Belize. What is amazing that they brought up three topics that they should be forever silent about. Those topics were the Naturalization of Immigrants, The Elections and Boundaries Department and the Social Security Board write-off program.


For anyone who knows the PUP, they would tell you that under their tenure even before 1998, the immigration department was guided by politicians who made millions upon millions of dollars as they sold of the Belizean Nationality to persons, who at no point in time even set foot in Belize. For them to now be criticizing a legitimate, above board program that is only seeing those who have legitimately applied and qualified to be Belizeans, is a slap in the face of anyone who heard them. Under the PUP there were agents who collected thousands of dollars to get people naturalized without ever being in the country. We can call the names of those who benefitted but we will leave it at that.

Then they spoke about the Elections and Boundaries Department and in particular the Chairman of the Commission, whom they say is a supporter of the UDP. What they failed to say is that of the 5 commissioners who make up that body, all of them are politically appointed. Three of those persons were appointed by the UDP and 2 by the PUP. Everyone can remember the major irregularities that took place at the Elections and Boundaries Department when a certain high ranking official of the PUP was there. We can call names but we will refrain from doing so.

Then they spoke about the Social Security Write-off program, which will see 782 persons benefit by not having to pay any mortgages. Now for the person, and we will call her name, Lisa Shoman, to show such strong objection to the program is to say the least an insult. She has quickly forgotten that as the Chairman of the Social Security Board, she told the Supreme Court say that the organization was not interested in collecting 3.34 million dollars, which it was owed. That single action benefitted one single individual, unlike what the UDP government is doing which is benefitting 782 families.

Is this the bunch who are seeking to govern our country? Imagine that!

-1 1 0 40 1/26/2012 06:00:00 62 0/0/0000 00:00:00 0 0 0/0/0000 00:00:00 1/26/2012 06:00:00 0/0/0000 00:00:00 show_title= link_titles= show_intro= show_section= link_section= show_category= link_category= show_vote= show_author= show_create_date= show_modify_date= show_pdf_icon= show_print_icon= show_email_icon= language= keyref= readmore= 1 0 8 0 991 robots= author= 4316 PUPs playing the fools pups-playing-the-fools

Everyone looked on in awe last week Wednesday when the PUP held a press conference to talk about everything they think is going wrong in the country of Belize. What is amazing that they brought up three topics that they should be forever silent about. Those topics were the Naturalization of Immigrants, The Elections and Boundaries Department and the Social Security Board write-off program.


For anyone who knows the PUP, they would tell you that under their tenure even before 1998, the immigration department was guided by politicians who made millions upon millions of dollars as they sold of the Belizean Nationality to persons, who at no point in time even set foot in Belize. For them to now be criticizing a legitimate, above board program that is only seeing those who have legitimately applied and qualified to be Belizeans, is a slap in the face of anyone who heard them. Under the PUP there were agents who collected thousands of dollars to get people naturalized without ever being in the country. We can call the names of those who benefitted but we will leave it at that.

Then they spoke about the Elections and Boundaries Department and in particular the Chairman of the Commission, whom they say is a supporter of the UDP. What they failed to say is that of the 5 commissioners who make up that body, all of them are politically appointed. Three of those persons were appointed by the UDP and 2 by the PUP. Everyone can remember the major irregularities that took place at the Elections and Boundaries Department when a certain high ranking official of the PUP was there. We can call names but we will refrain from doing so.

Then they spoke about the Social Security Write-off program, which will see 782 persons benefit by not having to pay any mortgages. Now for the person, and we will call her name, Lisa Shoman, to show such strong objection to the program is to say the least an insult. She has quickly forgotten that as the Chairman of the Social Security Board, she told the Supreme Court say that the organization was not interested in collecting 3.34 million dollars, which it was owed. That single action benefitted one single individual, unlike what the UDP government is doing which is benefitting 782 families.

Is this the bunch who are seeking to govern our country? Imagine that!

-1 1 0 40 1/26/2012 06:00:00 62 0/0/0000 00:00:00 0 0 0/0/0000 00:00:00 1/26/2012 06:00:00 0/0/0000 00:00:00 show_title= link_titles= show_intro= show_section= link_section= show_category= link_category= show_vote= show_author= show_create_date= show_modify_date= show_pdf_icon= show_print_icon= show_email_icon= language= keyref= readmore= 1 0 7 0 1359 robots= author= 4317 On Prime Minister, Hon. Dean O. Barrow and the UDP’s Stewardship of Belize on-prime-minister-hon-dean-o-barrow-and-the-udps-stewardship-of-belize PMEfforts and courage are not enough without purpose and direction. - John F. Kennedy

It is said that when one chooses the political arena, they need to have made up their mind as it requires perseverance and diligence. “One needs to count the cots before embarking on this journey.” Hon. Barrow, whether you contemplated or not or counted the cost, what Belizeans know is that you stayed the course, because you believed in the service, protection, and growth of this country. Ladies and Gentlemen of Belize’s jury, let us take a closer look at our Prime Minister’s record and mettle as a leader. A good leader identifies what people are facing and uses will power, intellect, and vision to craft a strategy. That way, it is easy to win the hearts and attention of the people. Political leaders must know what to promise the people. A promise was made to reduce the cost of living of the people and to ensure that pro-poor policies were developed and implemented.  Utilities are once again in the ownership of Belizean hands and with that winning initiative, people will be able to consume more electricity and more will have access because electricity rates are being reduced. This means a reduction in the amount of money spent on electricity; water rates will be reduced. Just combining those two initiatives, greatly reduces the cost of living. It means that everyone, especially the poor, will have more to spend on food and education, for example. It is imperative that we add the mortgage-forgiveness program, which brought Christmas tidings during what is normally ‘mawga’ season in Belize. Has the Prime Minister heard the cries of the people and responded? It is a resounding YES.

No leader or for that matter, no politician is able to meet every promise, because there are unforeseen circumstances that detracts, as is the case with the payment of the SUPERBOND, Belize’s economic albatross. We must admit, there has been strong action on promises made. Does the Prime Minister have an impeccable record of integrity? Again the answer is a resounding YES. His track record of leadership has played an important role in his success as a leader. Belizeans can check where he is coming from. We have been asked as a people to follow his lead; in just over three years in office, much has been done, but for the journey to continue and the successes to increase, people, there is a need to once again make the UDP the government and Hon. Dean Barrow, Prime Minister of Belize.

Does he have the ability to communicate and address issues? YES. As a successful leader, the Prime Minister has the ability to communicate and articulate issues meticulously. He is able to speak what people can comprehend. In most instances who votes a leader into office are those who may not be affluent, but require a leader who has the charisma and appeals to them. There is only one logical choice for leadership into the future and that leader is the Hon. Dean O. Barrow. Does he show love of the common person? Yes!  It is easy to desire the office of political leader for ulterior motives that come with power, but a genuine leader, who then becomes successful, is the one who has love for the common person on the street. One cannot fake their love for the people. People know if you are simply doing things to be seen or you are genuinely addressing issues, even in the absence of the cameras.

Does the Hon. Dean Barrow have strong intellectual power? Yes, second to none. A successful leader is one who upgrades his mental capacity. Political leadership is a huge responsibility. In running a country, there is a need to have a mind that works. Of course, one doesn’t do it all on his own, and therefore, must incorporate others. You will not be able to lead alone. You need others to play their part well. Everyone’s contribution is important in making the dream of economic growth and sustainability a reality. This success, as shown with the Executive arm of government, has increased the reason for another term to continue the mandate. Hon. Dean Barrow is a visionary who can see beyond the immediate and therefore, has cast a vision for the next two terms. The UDP needs the next two terms in office to complete the vision that has been cast. The UDP is willing to walk the talk.

As Polls seem to be the order of the day, recently, here is my poll on HUMANMETRICS. This poll compares the UDP and PUP on political performance index. The ranges are: LOW=0%-50%, Moderate=51% -75%, Moderately High=76%-85%, and High=86%-100%. Of the total electorate from all 31 divisions, the PUP polled LOW, and the UDP polled High. The margin of error is +/- 3%. In today’s political arena, individuals whose political performance index is more than 75% can be considered as ready for political activity. There is only one party that is ready to once again govern, and that party is the UDP by an overwhelming margin. -1 1 0 40 1/26/2012 06:00:00 62 0/0/0000 00:00:00 0 0 0/0/0000 00:00:00 1/26/2012 06:00:00 0/0/0000 00:00:00 show_title= link_titles= show_intro= show_section= link_section= show_category= link_category= show_vote= show_author= show_create_date= show_modify_date= show_pdf_icon= show_print_icon= show_email_icon= language= keyref= readmore= 1 0 6 0 1990 robots= author= 4318 Mexican Immigration Officials Hustling at the Border?? mexican-immigration-officials-hustling-at-the-border

The Guardian has received complaints from Belizeans, who have visited Mexico recently, about what can only be classified as hustling being conducted by Mexican Immigration officials at the northern border. According to the victims, Immigration officials boarded the ADO buses upon their arrival at the border and charged them $294 pesos for their exit out of Mexico.


The Guardian contacted the Mexican Embassy and was told that there is an entrance fee, DNI (Derecho de No Inmigrante), which was increased at the beginning of this year from $262 pesos to $294 pesos. However, that fee is only to be charged to individuals in three different cases. A tourist, who entered Mexico and stayed longer than seven consecutive days must pay the fee. Travelers, who transit through Mexico with destination to a third country are to pay the DNI. That includes those, who enter Chetumal by road to board a flight in Cancun as well as those arriving in Cancun towards Belize. It is also charged to holders of the border card FMVL (Forma Migratoria de Visitante Local) that stay in Mexico for more than three consecutive days. The DNI must be paid in pesos at any bank in Mexico. A bank is located at the Mexican Customs compound near the border during working hours.

Individuals complaining about the hustling said that they were charged while coming back from Cancun and other destinations in Mexico on the ADO buses. It was late and no bank was open. According to them, they were allowed to pay the fee in Belize dollars, and in some cases less. However, no receipt was issued.

Marcelino Miranda, Press Officer of the Mexican Embassy, is asking individuals with such complaint to report the incident at the Mexican Embassy. He said that no one is required to pay the entrance fee except in the three cases mentioned. He advises those required to pay the fee to visit a bank in advance of their departure and make the payment. For those who do not fit any of the above mentioned criteria, Miranda said they should ‘strongly object’ to paying the fees. He added that those persons coming from airplanes and make their way in transit through Mexico are advised to pay the fee before leaving Cancun and show their receipts at the border. -1 1 0 59 1/26/2012 06:00:00 64 Shane D. Williams 1/26/2012 18:02:59 64 0 0/0/0000 00:00:00 1/26/2012 06:00:00 0/0/0000 00:00:00 show_title= link_titles= show_intro= show_section= link_section= show_category= link_category= show_vote= show_author= show_create_date= show_modify_date= show_pdf_icon= show_print_icon= show_email_icon= language= keyref= readmore= 2 0 2 0 1673 robots= author= 4319 High Praises for Belize Maritime Policies high-praises-for-belize-maritime-policies

MajorDwight Gardiner, Chairman of the Caribbean Memorandum of Understanding on Port State Control CMOU, was in Belize this week to “thank the government for continued support of the regional maritime regulation body”.


The Memorandum of Understanding on Port State Control in the Caribbean Region was signed in Barbados on February 9, 1996 by nine states. The membership has since increased to fourteen States. Belize joined in 2008.According to Gardiner, the main purpose of the Port State Control is to eradicate substandard vessels from the Caribbean Sea. Each member state is mandated to board and inspect at least 15% of foreign vessels that call upon its ports to ensure compliance with various major international maritime conventions. Those conventions cover safety of passengers and crew members, safety of environment from harm, labour and trade laws.  Nine regional committees have been formed across the globe to ensure that vessels trading in their area are not substandard. The executive body of the CMOU is the Caribbean Port State Control Committee or the CPSCC and it was the third regional committee to be formed. It is comprised of representatives of all of the Member States and is headed by a Chairman and a Vice Chairman. Belize’s representative on the committee is Major John Flowers, Commissioner of the Belize Ports Authority.

Gardiner arrived in Belize on Sunday, January 22. He met with government representatives and key maritime officials; including officials from the Belize Ports Authority, Belize Coast Guard and the International Merchant Marine Registry of Belize (IMMARBE). He said that Belize has made significant strides in meeting international standards in the shipping industry and seems to be heading in the right direction. The next step is for greater collaboration between units. Gardiner was most impressed by IMMARBE, which he said is one of the world’s top thirty ship registration organizations. He said IMMARBE has even greater potential but it needs to work closer with units like the Ports Authority and Coast Guard in order to meet and set international standards. Gardiner said that more needs to be done in terms of educating the public on maritime issues. He said there are more ways in which the locals can benefit from the shipping industry. IMMARBE should invest in technical training to capitalize on local human resources because “many jobs are available in the shipping industry”.

Gardiner left the country on Wednesday, January 25, but visited Big Creek and the Belize Port Authority’s new monitoring site near Belizean Beach before leaving. At the site near Belizean Beach, the Ports Authority monitors all vessels within Belize waters. The site is also home of a project for the construction of a new base for the Ports Authority. Gardiner said he really enjoyed the visit and he is glad to see that Belize is moving in the right direction.  

-1 1 0 59 1/26/2012 06:00:00 64 Shane D. Williams 1/26/2012 18:02:15 64 0 0/0/0000 00:00:00 1/26/2012 06:00:00 0/0/0000 00:00:00 show_title= link_titles= show_intro= show_section= link_section= show_category= link_category= show_vote= show_author= show_create_date= show_modify_date= show_pdf_icon= show_print_icon= show_email_icon= language= keyref= readmore= 2 0 1 0 2085 robots= author= 4320 Cabinet decides on Rosewood extraction cabinet-decides-on-rosewood-extraction

Cabinet Release – 24th January, 2012

Cabinet at its regular meeting today, Tuesday, 24th January, 2012, discussed the matter of Rosewood extraction in Toledo.

In that regard, Cabinet decided as follows:
1. The Ministry of Natural Resources and the Environment will conduct a stock survey and assessment to determine the remaining inventory and to ascertain how much illegal activity, if any, has taken place. The Toledo Conservation NGOs will be invited to participate in the exercise.
2. Current permits will be maintained for the rest of the season, which will last until June.
3. Royalty will be increased immediately in order to allow the Forest Department to hire more staff to do better policing.
4. The course of action to be taken for the longer term will be decided based on the results of the stock survey and assessment exercise.
5. Cabinet agreed that the issuance of Rosewood extraction permits for areas that have never been harvested, may be considered.

-1 1 0 40 1/26/2012 06:00:00 62 0/0/0000 00:00:00 0 0 0/0/0000 00:00:00 1/26/2012 06:00:00 0/0/0000 00:00:00 show_title= link_titles= show_intro= show_section= link_section= show_category= link_category= show_vote= show_author= show_create_date= show_modify_date= show_pdf_icon= show_print_icon= show_email_icon= language= keyref= readmore= 1 0 3 0 1088 robots= author= 4321 Inaugracion oficial del Kiosco Turistico de BTB inaugracion-oficial-del-kiosco-turistico-de-btb

InaugracionEl pasado jueves 19 de enero, se llevo acabo la inauguración oficial del kiosco de información turística del Buro de Turismo de Belice (BTB) dentro de las instalaciones migratorias de la frontera del oeste.


Cuando eran las 10 de la mañana se dio por iniciada la ceremonia inaugural, el maestro de ceremonias fue el Sr. Gonzalo Rosado, la apertura religiosa corrió a cargo del Fr. John Robinson, mientras que las palabras de bienvenida, fueron expresadas por el alcalde municipal de Benque Viejo del Carmen Nicholas Ruiz.Este enfatizo en el gran trabajo que realiza el personal de la gerencia de la frontera (Border Managment),  y exalto los excelentes lazos de amistad entre el Ministro de turismo Hon. Manuel Heredia Jr. y el Representante del área Hon. Erwin Contreras.El alcalde Ruiz menciono que cada día crece y se fortalecen también, los lazos entre las dos naciones fronterizas de Guatemala y Belice.Por ultimo agradeció el apoyo recibido en su gestión política que esta a punto de claudicar, y reconoció el esfuerzo del gobierno central y del ministro Heredia para la creación de este kiosco de información turística concluyo.

Acto seguido el Director interino de BTB Sr. Javier Paredes, enfatizo que BTB continua trabajando para impulsar el comercio en el país, así como el esfuerzo para realizar la transformación turística en el área centroamericana.Hablo que BTB se siente complacido con el incremento del turismo en Belice que va creciendo día con día.Así dio paso al Hon. Manuel Heredia Jr. máximo dirigente del impulso turístico en nuestra nación.

El Ministro de turismo agradeció el apoyo a diferentes sectores de gobierno y privados para la creación de este kiosco de información turística.Dijo que actualmente el turismo extranjero, goza de las garantías dentro de un clima de paz y tranquilidad en su estancia en Belice, hablo que como polo turístico es un destino seguro, lleno de grandes bellezas naturales, enmarcados en un crecimiento económico originado en la derrama del sector turístico.Enfatizo que cada año se rebasan las expectativas del turismo en el país.Hablo también del esfuerzo bipartidista entre el Buro de Turismo de Belice BTB y el Ministerio que el preside. Finalizo mencionando que su Ministerio otorgo a la municipalidad de Benque Viejo del Carmen la cantidad de 15 mil dólares, para el embellecimiento de la entrada a dicha municipalidad, a su vez el alcalde Nicholas Ruiz agradeció el gesto y prometió destinarlo de la mejor manera. El voto de gracias corrió a cargo de Yanick Dalhouse.

El evento culmino con el corte simbólico del listón inaugrativo del kiosco, de manos del Ministro Hon. Manuel Heredia Jr., Javier Paredes y el alcalde Nicholas Ruiz.El evento reunió a autoridades de migración y aduana de Guatemala y Belice, asociaciones de taxis, empresas turísticas del área, el alcalde de San José Succotz Sr. Gilly Can, el alcalde de Melchor de Mencos Peten Guatemala Br. Ricardo Ávila, la senadora Carmita Contreras en representación del Ministro Erwin Contreras, que se encontraba en gira de trabajo, miembros de BTB, personal de la OEA, autoridades policiacas de ambas naciones entre otros invitados.El Chairman del Border Managment en el país Sr. Gonzalo Rosado, le dijo al GUARDIAN, que esta es una prueba de que el ministerio de turismo y BTB, continúan trabajando fuertemente para el fortalecimiento del turismo en Belice.Dijo también que las fronteras de este país, continuaran trabajando para mantener el servicio y la seguridad, a todos los visitantes extranjeros que visiten Belice, como una nación de bellezas naturales y de una atmosfera de paz y tranquilidad concluyo.

-1 1 0 40 1/26/2012 06:00:00 62 0/0/0000 00:00:00 0 0 0/0/0000 00:00:00 1/26/2012 06:00:00 0/0/0000 00:00:00 show_title= link_titles= show_intro= show_section= link_section= show_category= link_category= show_vote= show_author= show_create_date= show_modify_date= show_pdf_icon= show_print_icon= show_email_icon= language= keyref= readmore= 1 0 2 0 746 robots= author= 4322 Geovanni Brackett braces Sulph - the fight for the Tail! geovanni-brackett-braces-sulph-the-fight-for-the-tail

GeovanniIt was a little over two months ago, in the Sunday, November 13th, issue of the Guardian, that we revealed the plot to oust Moses Sulph as President of the Citizens Organized for Liberty through Action (COLA).


Sources informed us that members of COLA are fed up with the Jamaican-tongued president. On Monday, Geovanni Brackett appeared on 7 News and publicly announced that he would be running against Sulph for the presidency. Based on what our inside sources are saying, Sulph doesn’t stand a ghost of a chance in the race. The organization boasts almost 800 registered members but almost 90% are inactive. Some moved on once it became evident that the organization had moved far away from its original agenda under Sulph’s leadership. Sulph, is deemed as being consistently premature and haphazard in his actions. He jumps on any issue and constantly finds his foot in his mouth as he speaks with little knowledge and understanding of issues. Under Sulph’s leadership, the organization went from a powerful grassroots movement to an outright joke as it couldn’t even muster a crowd of thirty people in a highly publicized scheduled protest.

Brackett is supported by many of the original members and new radicals of the organization. He is highly regarded and respected among his peers for his militant approach and tough talk ability. He is deemed to be more calculated than Sulph, not that it takes much, and is believed to be the one responsible for COLA’s recent displays of defiance. However, what has done in Sulph is not really his ineffectiveness in organizing protests. It is once again about money. Sulph has not proven that he is able to garner financial support for the organization, something that Brackett can do or so he claims. As we reported in that November 13 article, Brackett was urged to run by a senior legal mind in the Ashcroft Alliance.   

He has been advised to take no chances and Brackett seems willing to take whatever steps necessary to ensure victory in the election. An allegation reaching the Guardian is that while they accuse the government of padding the national voters list, Brackett has been able to register over 150 new members of COLA in the span of a week. Elections for the executives of COLA will be held 2 p.m. on Saturday, January 28, at the Bishop Sylvester Hall. -1 1 0 40 1/26/2012 06:00:00 64 Shane D. Williams 0/0/0000 00:00:00 0 0 0/0/0000 00:00:00 1/26/2012 06:00:00 0/0/0000 00:00:00 show_title= link_titles= show_intro= show_section= link_section= show_category= link_category= show_vote= show_author= show_create_date= show_modify_date= show_pdf_icon= show_print_icon= show_email_icon= language= keyref= readmore= 1 0 1 0 1301 robots= author= 4323 Remanded for slashing brother in law’s face remanded-for-slashing-brother-in-laws-face

EsauOn Friday January 20th, 19-year-old Esau Bainton, a Cabinet Maker of #23 Perez Road, Ladyville was arraigned in the Belize City Magistrate’s Court where he was read a charge of grievous harm upon Ehud Haulze, his brother-in-law.    Bainton pleaded guilty to the charge and when the facts were read out to him in court, he did not agree with it. Hearing that, Magistrate Stuart entered an equivocal plea of not guilty on his behalf.  The court prosecutor objected to bail on the grounds that it was not certain of Haulze’s condition since he was receiving treatment for his injuries.  The prosecutor also objected to bail since Bainton may interfere with the victim since he frequents the home of the victim. He also asked the court to consider the fact that grievous harm is a very serious charge that can be tried summarily and or on indictment.  Magistrate Stuart agreed with the prosecutor and denied bail to Bainton. She remanded him into custody until January 31 but informed him that he can apply for bail at the Supreme Court with the assistance of an attorney.  In his defense, Bainton begged the court to give him bail since he just got a job that he does not want to lose it. He comes  from a big family and that things are difficult but that he is no trouble maker.

In a report to police, made by Ehud Haulze he said that he was at his girlfriend’s home, located at #23 Perez Road in Ladyville, when Bainton, his brother-in-law, who was across the street from where he was started to curse him out.  Fearing for his life, Haulze claims he walked away and that’s when Bainton began to walk behind him. It was then that Bainton cut him twice to the face with a broken glass, which he had in his hand. Haulze was cut to the left ear and upper jaw. His injuries were classified as grievous harm. According to Bainton, he and his brother-in-law had a misunderstanding and that he was across the next door neighbor’s house when his brother-in-law began to curse him out and call him names.  He said he called him back names and that’s when (Bainton) became offended by the names his brother-in-law called him and he injured him.   

-1 1 0 39 1/26/2012 06:00:00 62 0/0/0000 00:00:00 0 0 0/0/0000 00:00:00 1/26/2012 06:00:00 0/0/0000 00:00:00 show_title= link_titles= show_intro= show_section= link_section= show_category= link_category= show_vote= show_author= show_create_date= show_modify_date= show_pdf_icon= show_print_icon= show_email_icon= language= keyref= readmore= 1 0 5 0 1120 robots= author= 4324 Boco-T pleads guilty boco-t-pleads-guilty

KevinOn Friday January 20th Kevin Myvett, AKA, “Boco T” appeared before Magistrate Roberto Ordonez in Court #4 where he was read charges of escape and obstruction. He was charged after an incident on Wednesday January 18th near the tourism village in which Myvette was found in possession of cannabis. He was detained by WSC Phyllis McKenzie but before he could be taken in, Myvette grabbed the weed from the constable and ran off with it.


In court, he initially pleaded not guilty to escape but guilty to obstruction.  Boco T told Magistrate Ordonez that he did obstruct the officer but that he could not plead guilty to escape because he was never arrested.  He later changed his not guilty plea for escape to guilty because he claimed he wanted the matter to be put behind him.  His pleas were accepted by the court and he was fined $250 plus a $5.00 cost of court for the escape charge or in default of payment 2 months imprisonment.  He has until February 20, 2012 to pay.  He was fined $300.00 plus a $5.00 cost of court for the obstruction charge, which he has until that same date to pay or in default 3 months imprisonment.

Despite the non-custodial sentences, Boco-T could not go home since he has an outstanding fine of 8 thousand dollars for a drug related offence conviction back in 2007.  He was unable to pay the fine and a warrant was prepared for him to serve the outstanding balance in time which is equivalent to 3 years imprisonment. Myvette had been convicted previously convicted in 2007 and served a prison term up to 2011.

-1 1 0 39 1/26/2012 06:00:00 62 0/0/0000 00:00:00 0 0 0/0/0000 00:00:00 1/26/2012 06:00:00 0/0/0000 00:00:00 show_title= link_titles= show_intro= show_section= link_section= show_category= link_category= show_vote= show_author= show_create_date= show_modify_date= show_pdf_icon= show_print_icon= show_email_icon= language= keyref= readmore= 1 0 4 0 623 robots= author= 4325 No one will be charged for Richard Hoare’s murder no-one-will-be-charged-for-richard-hoares-murder

RichardA Coroner’s inquest into the killing of businessman Richard Hoare concluded in Magistrate’s court on Friday January 20th. At the conclusion of the inquest, a 3-member jury determined that there is insufficient evidence to establish who was responsible for Richard Hoare’s murder in 2007.


The jury came up with the decision after and all-day process where the jury had listed to statements read out in court to them from various witnesses, who had given statements to the police in 2007 regarding Hoare’s death.  The jury deliberated for about an hour after which they came up with the verdict.  At that time, the foreman stated that, “we all agree that based on the evidence we were privileged to, we find that there is insufficient evidence to establish who was responsible for the death of Mr. Richard Hoare.”

During the hearing, it was revealed that on the night of August 1, 2007, Richard Hoare met his untimely death whilst on Vasquez Avenue in Belize City.  He died as a result of head injuries he sustained from gunshot wounds. At the time of the killing it was widely speculated that Hoare was lured to his death, allegedly by a female, who called him to leave his home on Baymen Avenue. Witnesses had given statements to police that they saw two persons, a male and a female, leave the crime scene but no identities could be established. Several persons were picked up in connection with the murder but they were questioned and later released. -1 1 0 39 1/26/2012 06:00:00 62 0/0/0000 00:00:00 0 0 0/0/0000 00:00:00 1/26/2012 06:00:00 0/0/0000 00:00:00 show_title= link_titles= show_intro= show_section= link_section= show_category= link_category= show_vote= show_author= show_create_date= show_modify_date= show_pdf_icon= show_print_icon= show_email_icon= language= keyref= readmore= 1 0 3 0 802 robots= author= 4326 Charge for attempted murder charge-for-attempted-murder

On Tuesday January 24th, a security guard was remanded to prison after being accused of trying to kill Antelope Street resident, 28-year-old Ellis Ortiz during an altercation. 32-year-old Nathaniel Apolonio Thomas Jr. was arraigned in the Belize City Magistrate’s Court where he was charged with one count of attempted murder, one count of dangerous harm and one count of use of deadly means of harm upon Ellis Ortiz. He appeared before Magistrate Roberto Ordonez in Court #4 where he was unrepresented and was read the three criminal offenses. Due to the nature of the offense, Thomas was remanded into custody at the Belize Central Prison until March 6, the date he is to reappear in court.


In a police report, Ellis Ortiz, 28, a resident of #21 Pelican Street reported to police that he was in the company of a 17-year-old female friend socializing at #146 Antelope Street Extension, when he was approached by Thomas, who was armed with a knife and who inflicted several stab wounds on him. Police say Ortiz was received multiple stab wounds, one to the center of the abdomen, four to the left side of the back and one to the right arm. He is listed in a stable condition at the KHMH. -1 1 0 39 1/26/2012 06:00:00 62 0/0/0000 00:00:00 0 0 0/0/0000 00:00:00 1/26/2012 06:00:00 0/0/0000 00:00:00 show_title= link_titles= show_intro= show_section= link_section= show_category= link_category= show_vote= show_author= show_create_date= show_modify_date= show_pdf_icon= show_print_icon= show_email_icon= language= keyref= readmore= 1 0 2 0 547 robots= author= 4327 Accused of stealing cellphone and remote control accused-of-stealing-cellphone-and-remote-control

ShaniceOn Friday January 20th, 21 year old ShaniceYsaguirre, a resident of #9 Cemetery Road, appeared in Magistrate’s court to answer to charges of theft after being accused of stealing  a cell phone along with a TV remote from another woman.


Ysaguirre was escorted to the Belize City Court where she was charged with before Magistrate Hettie-Mae Stewart.  She was unrepresented in Court and she pleaded not guilty to the charge. There was no objection to bail and Magistrate Stewart offered her bail in the sum of $2,000 plus one surety of the same amount. ShaniceYsaguirre is due back in court on February 23rd.

Allegations are that on Thursday January 19, Ysaguirre dishonestly appropriated a cell phone along with a TV remote, the property of Adrianna Joseph.  Joseph told police that on that day, Ysaguirre was at her home when she threw her cell phone and television remote through a window.  When the Joseph went to see if she could find the items, they were nowhere to be found. -1 1 0 39 1/26/2012 06:00:00 62 0/0/0000 00:00:00 0 0 0/0/0000 00:00:00 1/26/2012 06:00:00 0/0/0000 00:00:00 show_title= link_titles= show_intro= show_section= link_section= show_category= link_category= show_vote= show_author= show_create_date= show_modify_date= show_pdf_icon= show_print_icon= show_email_icon= language= keyref= readmore= 1 0 1 0 100 robots= author= 4328 Hablemos claro - Las Nacionalidades hablemos-claro-las-nacionalidades-

 Se ha abierto la caja de Pandora, en relación a los nuevos acontecimientos registrados en nuestro país de Belice: Las Nacionalidades. El partido contrario al gobernante, a dejado sentirse entre la sociedad dando gritos desesperados por ser escuchados. Para su desgracia esta muestra de cordura política del Primer Ministro, los calla con su propio silencio.Gentes de diferentes nacionalidades, han enriquecido el acervo cultural de esta tierra que nos arecibido con los brazos abiertos. Gente que con su aporte fortalece una sober- anía que nació hace muchos años, peroque se confirmo aquella madrugada del 21 de septiembre de 1981. Desde ese entonces, este hermoso país se vio fundado con la mescla del maya mestizo, el garífuna, el criollo y otras etnias que poblaron este terruño, incluyendo los orientales y la comunidad hindú entre otros. Pareciera una quimera de la realidad pero no lo es, con la aparición de la comunidad hispana, llámese guatemaltecos, salvadoreños, hondureños etc., se incremento el trabajo agrícola en nuestrosuelo en eseentonces, solo destinado al cultivo del maíz y la caña. Aparecióentonces un florecimiento de la agricultura a granescala, con una gran variedad de nuevoscultivos. De la misma manera el país se vio fortalecido con un incremento económico. Basta ver el ejemplo de los Estados Unidos de América, país de inmigrantes y de diferentes culturas, hoy Belicea abierto de nuevo la puerta para esos migrantes que vienen a aportar con trabajo, apostando a lo que no hanencontrado en sustierras de origen, paz y oportunidadsana de crecimiento. Esa paz tan anhelada en otros países, esrecibida en este entorno de belleza y naturaleza virgen, por ello cada persona que llega a este país a aportar, es bien recibido y  con llevara con el paso de los años, la recompensa del tiempo.

El gobierno de Belice aposto por regularizar a cientos de ciudadanos que habitaban en estan ación, sin haber finalizado su estancia migratoria de la mejormanera, todos ellos calificaban basados en la constitución beliceña y en los estatutos de nacionalización del Ministerio de Migración.Sin embargo muchos de ellos desconocían el pro cedimiento, por ignorancia, por falta de recursos financieros o simplemente por miedo, es entonces cuando esta oportunidad vino a salvar y a mejorar, las condiciones de cientos de familias radicadas en este país.

El partido contrario (pup) a intentado bloquear este intento de sobera níamigratoria, a vociferado perdiendo la noción del tiempo, cuando en el ayer hicieron lo mismo, lagunas mentales aparecieron en el partidoazul, (Deliriums tremens) desplegados contra ellos se ven todos los días en sus medios des informativos, hasta canales de iglesia ponen mensajes políticos, desvariando su contenido religioso, cayendo en la ambición del dinero. Desgraciadamente para ellos los planes de progreso en este país van unidos de la mano con la ayuda migratoria. Bienvenidos nuevo sciudad anos beliceños, ustedes son desde el momento que recibieron su carta de nacionalización, parte de esta sociedad beliceña con los mismos derechos y obligaciones que cual quier otro ciudad ano beliceño. Tu espacio en esta nación caribeñaes tan especial como cual quier otro ciudad ano, no tengas miedo de los falsos fariseos que después que no te quieren te invitan a participar con ellos, como pude observar en un mensaje televisivo, esa es una desgracia para la democracia en este país, porque el que se escudaen la oscuridad jamás podrá recibir la luz. El que vive en la mentira como una forma de vida, nunca podrá recibir el respeto del pueblo.  El que destruye siempre jamás podrá cimentar su vida con objetividad, y ellos dentro de su enanismo mental, no se dan cuenta que la población los toma porbufones, por hienas del llano. Se carcajean pero causan adversidad y asco.Intentanescribir con susmensajes hostiles y llenos de odio, estos papelitos terminan donde nacieron en la basura!!gracias a Dios, la gente al verlosmas se inclinan por la verdad y el respeto; mientras el PUP continua esa tendencia de ofensa y odio, mas lograra que el pueblo los ignore y los vea con recelo. Supolíticanegra y suciaseguirá el mismodestino de antes, derrota tras derrota, por eso hay que trabajar con respeto y honestidad. Como dijo un gran sabio, nada crece sin la voluntad del gran arquitecto del universo, porque la luz de la verdad siempre iluminara la oscuridad de sus mentes enfermas. Hoy y siempre caminemos para adelante, hoy diste el primer paso con tu nacionalidad, mañana lo harás con tu trabajo y con tuaportación a este país, que teabriól as puertas desinteres adamente, la recompensa la recibirán tus siguientes generaciones, peroserá el tiempo, el implacable tiempo el quenos de la razón o el privilegio de equivocarnos...Solo el tiempo.

-1 1 0 42 1/26/2012 06:00:00 64 Alejandro Rios 0/0/0000 00:00:00 0 0 0/0/0000 00:00:00 1/26/2012 06:00:00 0/0/0000 00:00:00 show_title= link_titles= show_intro= show_section= link_section= show_category= link_category= show_vote= show_author= show_create_date= show_modify_date= show_pdf_icon= show_print_icon= show_email_icon= language= keyref= readmore= 1 0 2 0 76 robots= author= 4329 Three Point Three Four three-point-three-four

For the past two weeks, the UDP has been taking a “licking” from all quarters in the media, but especially so from the surrogate PUP Executive Committees like CTV3 and Channel Fox, relative to two national issues: the naturalization exercise and the Social Security loans write-off. Needless to say, these diversions are welcoming to the PUP, since they come at an opportune time, which shifts focus from the in-fighting within the actual PUP Executive and the lack of enthusiasm for their new leader.  Let me dissect the two issues with a bit of recent history.

My first experience as a campaigner for a political party was in the late seventies, almost two years before the next general elections were due. Some friends and I had decided to join a small youth group here in OW, Youths of Unity, which was openly sympathetic to the United Democratic Party.  At first, we concentrated on modest community projects like white-washing public trees and cleaning parks and playgrounds. But as the election year “turned the bend”, we became more involved in distributing political flyers and doing house-to-house campaigning. The UDP lost in ’79 but our youth group remained active until the UDP won the generals on December 14, 1984, then we all drifted apart.

That short introduction was intended to underline that what I will say next comes from direct experience rather than second-hand talk. In those early years of campaigning for the UDP, most Central American immigrants considered the UDP their natural enemy and feared deportation if the Red would ever win. The PUP encouraged this mindset, and the UDP did nothing to counter this persuasion. So whenever UDP campaigners would arrive at a house where Central American residents lived, we would more than often tick off those votes as Blue.  That was the reality of the day, and we just accepted it as part of the political landscape. 

I recall right up to the June 30, 1993 elections, the People’s United Party was still considered the immigrant’s best friend, and the UDP a risky proposition. At that time, shortly before the General Elections, the Attorney General went on a mass naturalization exercise, where even the very application fees were waived for immigrants to become Belizeans. There was a big hullaballoo in the press, but the issue died a natural death and was not referred to ever again. It is this traditional perspective, which the PUP draws upon to consider itself the only political Party bequeathed with the inherent prerogative to grant citizenship to immigrants, so as to later garner their votes.

To wit, then, the PUP is accusing the UDP of doing something which they repeatedly did with impunity, but which they now condemn as altogether wrong, not because the applicants don’t qualify, but simply because the UDP should keep out of the PUP’s province. They issued a weak press release where they, as government, will amend the immigration law so that nationality certificates cannot be processed within three months of any election. If you believe that from the PUP, papa, you will believe anything. 

The other item is the loans write-off at SSB. It is indeed a generous gesture from the Government, and must certainly be appreciated by all recipients. However, I frankly believe that if any person at SSB was involved in “insider trading”, they should not be considered and should additionally face disciplinary action. Belizeans should not be taken for a ride and be made to sponsor persons, who are not eligible for the program.

At the same time, we should not be quick to pronounce judgment on others without giving them the opportunity to explain. Some in this present PUP Executive, hands still clammy from the past Musa administration, strut around like “guinea hens” and stand ready to point fingers. But the bone that stuck in my craw was to listen to the attacks from the “pious” lady Senator condemning the proposal to grant exemptions totaling $6.5 million to 780 persons for their housing loans. We will always remember when she indifferently stood in front of Meerabux and dropped the SSB claim for three point three four million dollars, plus interest, against Courtney. She gave away our money to a wealthy man; money dispossessed from the poor and the middle class of our country. What hypocrisy, then, to sit there in that press conference and pretend you care so much for the Belizean taxpayer!

Anyway, fat lady aside, the surrogates have certainly enjoyed their season at the propaganda wheel, but I believe the UDP is now recovering and getting solid ground support from the where it matters most: the grassroots. I see the Prime Minister’s tour gathering momentum, and people are anxiously waiting for him here in OW. The live poll will be held on March 7, and only then can the pollsters do real analysis, not offer fly-by-night opinions.

-1 1 0 42 1/26/2012 06:00:00 64 Jamil Matat 0/0/0000 00:00:00 0 0 0/0/0000 00:00:00 1/26/2012 06:00:00 0/0/0000 00:00:00 show_title= link_titles= show_intro= show_section= link_section= show_category= link_category= show_vote= show_author= show_create_date= show_modify_date= show_pdf_icon= show_print_icon= show_email_icon= language= keyref= readmore= 1 0 1 0 164 robots= author= 4330 Empty Vessels empty-vessels

 The PUP political machine is falling apart and although some of the wheels are still turning they are no longer properly connected so they whirl furiously and noisily but to no avail.  The more the machine fails, the noisier it becomes but, as the old adage asserts, empty vessels make the most noise.  They are joined by outside voices drawn from a pool made up of disappointed individuals, who have failed to become the political stars they have ambitions to be, so-called third party aspirants looking for any opportunity to get free publicity and a sprinkling of pundits, who use any occasion to jump into the limelight.  As elections draw nearer, the volume is increasing but the connection to reality is as tenuous as ever.           

The issues, or non-issues, that have surfaced are perennial favourites, chosen because they strike a popular chord.  The integrity of the electoral process is rightly of great importance to all Belizeans and so the empty vessels have seized the opportunity to call it into question.  It is true that before every election there is a rush to register qualified voters and this rush is always led by political aspirants.  There is nothing unusual about the process this year.  One can argue that they should be doing this all year round but the reality is that there is always more activity in an election year.  All political aspirants from all parties and independents should be involved in registering qualified electors.  This does not require any special inside track, merely the dedication to do the ground work of finding those who need to be registered and helping them to negotiate the process.  Those who, like Johnnie, complain of the number of new registrants and imply that they are not legitimate obviously has not done his own homework of getting supporters of his party to register.  The empty vessels have not come up with a single instance of someone who has been registered improperly. 

This issue is closely linked to immigration and naturalization concerns.  There is nothing sinister about helping people to negotiate the process of naturalization.  In the course of campaigning, political aspirants will naturally come across people who are fully qualified to apply to become Belizean citizens but find the process daunting.  It is equally to be expected that a good politician will facilitate those who wish to apply.  Again, this option is open to politicians of any party if they have the dedication to do so.  What happened is that as the applications were processed, word quickly started to spread and other qualified individuals realized that this was an ideal opportunity to pursue their own applications.  They naturally sought out the people they thought were interested in helping them.  Most UDP politicians were almost overwhelmed by the number of people who sought out their assistance but, knowing their duty, they worked overtime to help all those who requested their assistance.  Some politicians help with the costs involved in the same way as they help with school fees and electricity bills.  There is nothing sinister or unethical with helping poor people.  It only crosses the line if a reward is offered for voting in a particular manner.  Again, the empty vessels have been unable to find a single instance of an unqualified person gaining citizenship.

The side issue of the eligibility of Guatemalan-born persons is another red herring.  By law and custom, we have been offering citizenship to these persons for the past 20 years.  Those who have a problem with this have had ample opportunity to campaign against it but they are only now making a noise.

Interestingly, the oil issue has failed to gain momentum and so the empty vessels have not been calling the talk shows about it.  Corruption is another non-issue.  No organization can guarantee the integrity of all its members as Churches and American Colleges with football teams have found to their embarrassment.  It is therefore not surprising that there have been individual errors of judgment within the government but whenever credible allegations surface Dean Barrow has responded immediately and forcefully. Politicians are not impervious to these standards.  Action was taken against ranking UDP Ministers and a Mayor when their behaviour failed to pass the test.

Usually, oil quietens the squeaky wheel but the Lord has concluded that funding the PUP is not a great investment.  Funds are now being channelled to NGOs, third parties, independent candidates and any other empty vessel that promises to make a lot of noise.Maybe we all need to take Boots’ advice.  “Don’t worry about the noise in the market but just check your change.”

-1 10 0 56 1/26/2012 06:00:00 62 0/0/0000 00:00:00 0 0 0/0/0000 00:00:00 1/26/2012 06:00:00 0/0/0000 00:00:00 show_title= link_titles= show_intro= show_section= link_section= show_category= link_category= show_vote= show_author= show_create_date= show_modify_date= show_pdf_icon= show_print_icon= show_email_icon= language= keyref= readmore= 1 0 1 0 59 robots= author= 4331 Wesley Upper wins two in primary schools basketball wesley-upper-wins-two-in-primary-schools-basketball

WesleyThe Belize City Primary Schools Basketball Competition continued on Tuesday January 24, with two male games and a single female game on the schedule. In the female game, Buttonwood Bay Nazarene defeated Queen Square Anglican School by the score of 44-0. The top scorer for Buttonwood Bay Nazarene was Ishelle Magandi with 20 points.

In the first of two male games played, St. John’s Primary defeated Calvary Temple School by the score of 27-21. The top scorer for St. John’s Primary was Shadrick Lord with 15 points while the top scorer for Calvary Temple was Adler Romero with 10 points.

In the second game, Buttonwood Bay Nazarene defeated Queen Square Anglican by the score of 45-6. The top scorer for Buttonwood Bay Nazarene was Jaywin Pandy with 17 points and for Queen Square Anglican it was Lindon Peters. 

The competition continued on Monday January 23, 2012, at the Belize City Centre with two games in the male competition. In the first game, St. Martin De Porres defeated Belize Elementary School by the score of 85-4. The top scorer for St. Martin De Porres was Clency Lopez with 37 points, while the top scorers for Belize Elementary were Kristian Swasey and Sahir Guerra with 2 points each.
In the second game, Caye Caulker Roman Catholic defeated Ebenezer Methodist School by the score of 21-19. The top scorer for Caye Caulker Roman Catholic was Zimmer Perez with 15 points and the top scorer for Ebenezer Methodist was Harold Thompson with 12 points.

On Friday January 20, in the only female game of the day, Ephesus Seventh Day Adventist defeated Buttonwood Bay Nazarene by the score of 10-8. The top scorer for Ephesus Seventh Day Adventist was Hasly Mejia with 6 points and the top scorer for Buttonwood Bay Nazarene was Monique Mortis with 8 points.

In the first male game, Ephesus Seventh Day Adventist also won over Buttonwood Bay Nazarene by the score of 26-12. The top scorer for Ephesus Seventh Adventist Day was Delbert Sabal with 9 points, while the top scorer for Buttonwood Bay Nazarene was Bryan Pavon with 8 points.

In the second game, Wesley Upper School defeated Holy Redeemer School by the score of 37-24. The top scorer for Wesley Upper School was Shaquille Crawford with 24 points, while the top scorer for Holy Redeemer School was Everall Tablada with 11 points.

On Thursday January 19, in the first male game played, Queen Street Baptist defeated Calvary Temple School by the score of 34-9. The top scorer for Queen Street Baptist School was Denmark Gill with 17 points and the top scorer for Calvary Temple School was Adler Romero with 7 points.

In the second game, James Garbutt Seventh Day Adventist School won over Unity Presbyterian School by the score of 37-13. The top scorer for James Garbutt was Hubert Frazer with 14 points and for Unity Presbyterian the top scorers were July Barriento and Ruben Leslie with 5 points each.

On Wednesday January 18, in the first male game, Wesley Upper School defeated St. John’s Primary School by the score of 52-4. The top scorer for Wesley Upper was Shaquille Crawford with 38 points and the top scorers for St. John’s Primary were John Kelly and Shadrick Lord with 2 points each.

In game two, Belize Elementary School defeated Queen Square Anglican by the score of 17-14. The top scorer for Belize Elementary School was Mathew Usher with 8 points and the top scorer for Queen Square Anglican it was Kenroy Hamilton with 10 points.

-1 1 0 41 1/26/2012 06:00:00 62 0/0/0000 00:00:00 0 0 0/0/0000 00:00:00 1/26/2012 06:00:00 0/0/0000 00:00:00 show_title= link_titles= show_intro= show_section= link_section= show_category= link_category= show_vote= show_author= show_create_date= show_modify_date= show_pdf_icon= show_print_icon= show_email_icon= language= keyref= readmore= 1 0 3 0 717 robots= author= 4332 Central Region Football competition rolls on at the MCC central-region-football-competition-rolls-on-at-the-mcc

WesleyThe 2011-2012 Central Region Secondary Schools Football Competition continued at the MCC Grounds here in Belize City.

On Tuesday January 24, in the female competition, Gwen Lizarraga High School defeated St. Catherine Academy by the score of 1-0. The only goal of the game was scored by Jersha Estrada.

In the male game, Ladyville Technical High School blasted Nazarene High School by the score of 8-1. The goal scorers for Ladyville Technical were Denroy McCord (3), Nathaniel Sedacy (2), Tyrone Parchue, Tyrell Parchue and Ek Garcia scored a goal each.

On Monday January 23, in the female game, Wesley College defeated Maud Williams High School by the score of 2-0. The goal scorers for Wesley College were Elisha Bernardez and Shanice Neal.

In the male game, St. John’s College defeated Maud Williams High School by the score of 1-0. Dimitri Fabro scored the only goal of the game.

The competition continued on Saturday January 21. In the first of two male games played, Wesley College defeated Excelsior High School by the score of 3-0.  In the second game, Anglican Cathedral College and Gwen Lizarraga High played to a 2-2 draw. Geon Makin scored the 2 goals for Anglican Cathedral College, while Francis Andrews and John Valerio scored the goals for Gwen Lizarraga High School.

On Friday January 20, in the female game, St. Catherine Academy and Anglican Cathedral College played to a 0-0 draw.

In the male game, St. John’s College defeated Ladyville Technical by the score of 1-0. The only goal of the game was scored by Trevon Rhaburn.

On Thursday January 19, in the female game, Gwen Lizarraga High School defeated Wesley College by the score of 2-1. Jersha Estrada scored the 2 goals for Gwen Lizarraga High School and Elisha Bernardez scored the only goal for Wesley College.

In the male game, Gwen Lizarraga High School blanked Wesley College by the score of 3-0.

On Wednesday January 18, in the female game, St. Catherine Academy won over Maud Williams High School via the default route.

In the male game, Maude Williams won over Nazarene High School by the score of 2-1. Michael Lambey and Brandon Myles scored for Maud Williams, while Benjamin Hyde scored for Nazarene High School.

-1 1 0 41 1/26/2012 06:00:00 62 0/0/0000 00:00:00 0 0 0/0/0000 00:00:00 1/26/2012 06:00:00 0/0/0000 00:00:00 show_title= link_titles= show_intro= show_section= link_section= show_category= link_category= show_vote= show_author= show_create_date= show_modify_date= show_pdf_icon= show_print_icon= show_email_icon= language= keyref= readmore= 1 0 2 0 80 robots= author= 4333 Education is number one team into the playoffs education-is-number-one-team-into-the-playoffs

Telemedia’sThe regular season for the 10th Annual Belize City Interoffice Softball Competition is fast winding down at Rogers Stadium the home of softball in Belize.

On Monday January 23, in the only game played on the schedule, Telemedia defeated Baaba Shap Kit Kat by the score of 12-5 in five innings. Telemedia scored 4 runs in the top of the 1st inning, 4 more in the 2nd inning, 2 in the 4th inning and 2 in the 5th inning. Telemedia scored its 12 runs on 10 hits.

The Telemedia offence was keyed by shortstop Omar Gordon, who collected 3 hits in 3 official at bats. His hits included a 2 run homer in the top of the 1st inning, an RBI double in the 2nd inning, and an RBI triple in the 3rd inning.

Meanwhile, Baaba Shap Kit Kat scored 5 runs on 7 hits.

The winning pitcher was Bernard Pitts and the losing pitcher was Luigi Zaldivar.

On Sunday January 22, in the first game on the schedule, Education won over KHMH via the default route. With that win, Education advanced to the “Page System” Playoffs as the number one seed.

In the second game of the day, Kit Kat Baaba Shap edged Tuff “E” Nuff Tours by the score of 20-19 in 7 innings. Kit Kat Baaba Shap scored 3 runs in the 1st inning, 3 in the 3rd and 4th innings, 6 in the 5th, 4 in the 6 inning and the final run in the 7th inning for the win. Meanwhile, Tuff “E” Nuff Tours scored a run in the 1st inning, 3 in the 2nd inning, 6 in the 4th and 6 innings and 3 more in the 7th inning.

On Saturday January 21, in the first game played, Telemedia ran all over BWS by the score of 25-4 in 3 innings. Telemedia scored 25 runs with the aid of 11 hits, and 7 bases-on-balls. Meanwhile, BWS scored its 4 runs on 6 hits and 4 bases-on-balls. The winning pitcher was Bernard Pitts and the losing pitcher was Andrew “Pampo” Young.

In the second game, Police walloped Baaba Shap Kit Kat by the score of 22-2. Police collected a total of 21 hits including an assortment of extra base hits. Meanwhile, Baaba Shap Kit Kat scored 2 runs on 2 hits. The winning pitcher was Dennis Myles and the losing pitcher was Luigi Zaldivar.

The competition then continued on Friday January 20, with two more games on the schedule. In game one, Telemedia blasted Education by the score of 15-8 to hand it its first defeat of this interoffice competition’s campaign.  Telemedia pounded the pitching of Joel Wade and Maria Smith for 17 hits including shortstop Omar Gordon’s solo blast in the bottom of the 3rd inning and third baseman Nelson Tillett’s 2 run triple in the bottom of the 1st inning.

For Education, it scored 8 runs on 7 hits, including third baseman Joseph Domingo’s 2 run double, and shortstop Earl Norales’ run producing double in the top of the 1st inning.

The winning pitcher was Francis Usher and the losing pitcher was Joel Wade.

In the second game, Police defeated Tuff “E” Nuff Tours by the score of 17-6. Police collected a total of 11 hits, which included second baseman Dorian Jones 2-run homer in the 3rd inning. Meanwhile, Tuff “E” Nuff Tours scored its 6 runs on 7 hits including right fielder Tyrone Edwards’ 2-run triple in the 4th inning.

The winning pitcher was Leonora Morales and the losing pitcher was Rico Black.

-1 1 0 41 1/26/2012 06:00:00 62 0/0/0000 00:00:00 0 0 0/0/0000 00:00:00 1/26/2012 06:00:00 0/0/0000 00:00:00 show_title= link_titles= show_intro= show_section= link_section= show_category= link_category= show_vote= show_author= show_create_date= show_modify_date= show_pdf_icon= show_print_icon= show_email_icon= language= keyref= readmore= 1 0 1 0 72 robots= author= 4334 Double Up - Two elections in one double-up-two-elections-in-one

PMPrime Minister Hon. Dean Barrow held a press conference on Tuesday January 31st in which he announced that the elections, both the Municipal and the General will be held on March 7th. The announcement had been made a couple hours earlier during a national address. In that address, Prime Minister Barrow encapsulated the UDP’s tenure and it was always for the People. There is not enough space and time to highlight the government’s accomplishments in the past 4 years but one thing that is clear from the policies of the UDP, they have always been people-centered.

Now the UDP, having done so much for the people of Belize, nationalizing utilities; writing off loans; having a food pantry program; providing school subsidies; lan

d for first time land owners; housing for those who had none; and the list goes on; it is asking the Belizean people for a new mandate. Granted, it has been four years since the UDP was swept into office in a landslide election, but because of the policies that have been put in place, the UDP is asking the general public to endorse those policies or reject them.

The United Democratic Party is certain that those policies indeed have made a significant positive impact on the people. It is for that reason that now the General and the Municipal Elections have been called. The people of Belize will decide whether or not the decisions of this Government over the past four years warrant another term in office. The ordinary man and woman, even the children will definitely endorse the policies of the UDP; the reasons for this endorsement is simple: the UDP is not a party of corrupt, worthless thieves! The UDP is made up of persons with high integrity, candidates who work tirelessly for the people, candidates who do not seek to enrich themselves, rather make live better for each and every Belizeans.

There is no denying that the main reason for this is because of the flawless leader that the representatives follow. Hon. Dean Barrow has never been involved in any act that betrayed the people and as such he holds the members of his party to very much the same standard.

During his press conference Hon. Barrow, expressed his gratitude to have been given the opportunity to serve the people, in reality it should be the next way around. Belizeans should be thankful that for the first time since the PUP’s 10 year reign of terror that we have a leader that truly is for the people.

Come March 7th there is no option, the UDP will get the resounding endorsement that the past 4 years have not been enough to undo what the PUP did and there is a need for 5 more years to do so and make live better for each and every Belizean.

UDP – Always for the People.

-1 6 0 54 2/2/2012 06:00:00 62 0/0/0000 00:00:00 0 0 0/0/0000 00:00:00 2/2/2012 06:00:00 0/0/0000 00:00:00 show_title= link_titles= show_intro= show_section= link_section= show_category= link_category= show_vote= show_author= show_create_date= show_modify_date= show_pdf_icon= show_print_icon= show_email_icon= language= keyref= readmore= 1 0 1 0 807 robots= author= 4335 Who borrowed most who-borrowed-most

Source:This graph speaks volumes of what was taking place under the PUP tenure in office. The contrast can be drawn not only between the current administration but even those of the past. There is no wonder why the former PUP party leader, Johnny Briceno, called on the PUP millionaires to bring back the money which they took and placed in foreign and offshore accounts. 


Imagine, under the PUP’s 10 years they borrowed 1 billion 452 million dollars. The saddest part of the whole situation is that there is absolutely nothing to show for it. There is NOTHING to show but a Superbond, which has handcuffed the progress of the country. On February 20th, government must find BZ$33,537,066.66. in order to be able to service the Superbond.

Then you have them going around asking the Belizean people to vote for them? Hell NO! There is no way that the Belizean people will put back the bunch of thieves into office. Once bitten twice shy… they took the people of Belize for a 10-year ride almost into complete economic ruin. That story will never be repeated. We need to remember that the same people who were running and controlling the PUP back then, are the same ones who are running and controlling the PUP.

PUP no have no come back fi come back! -1 6 0 53 2/2/2012 06:00:00 62 0/0/0000 00:00:00 0 0 0/0/0000 00:00:00 2/2/2012 06:00:00 0/0/0000 00:00:00 show_title= link_titles= show_intro= show_section= link_section= show_category= link_category= show_vote= show_author= show_create_date= show_modify_date= show_pdf_icon= show_print_icon= show_email_icon= language= keyref= readmore= 1 0 3 0 2173 robots= author= 4336 Guinea Grass Leads Election Charge!!! guinea-grass-leads-election-charge

MassiveOn Sunday, January 29, Prime Minister Barrow told residents of Orange Walk South, “The elections will be called soon, very soon.”


Prime Minister Barrow’s third stop on his national tour took him to Guinea Grass Village in the Orange Walk District. The attendance could not have been more spectacular. 1,500 chairs were only enough to seat about half of the people in attendance. Even more impressive than the number was the energy. The crowd did not show up to be motivated by the Prime Minister and other leaders of the United Democratic Party. They showed up to boost the spirit of the Prime Minister and to endorse Rosendo“Chendo”Urbina and the United Democratic Party as their candidate and party of choice for the 2012 General Election.

Hon. Gaspar Vega, who some in attendance referred to as El “Campeon del Norte”, was among those who took to the rostrum. He was on fire as he presented on land distribution during the PUP terms in office and under this UDP administration. He explained that during the PUP’s ten years in office, they distributed only 8,000 parcels of land. That is 800 per year on average and those were mostly to their friends and cronies. Under the United Democratic Party, in just four years, over 22,000 parcels of land have been distributed already and another 4,000 will be distributed shortly. 26,000 parcels of land distributed in just 4 years and the vast majority is to first time land owners.

Hon. Marco Pech, Area Representative for Orange Walk South, offered his full support to Rosendo Urbina. He said that the turnout illustrates that the people are satisfied with the UDP government and the energy proves that they are ready to vote red once again in Orange Walk South. By simply travelling to villages of Orange Walk South, an outsider could understand why the division is going to stay red. The road is in excellent condition. Under the PUP, the terrain was like a minefield. Urbina thanked Pech for his support and expressed his intention to work hard for and on behalf of the people of Orange Walk South. He was also endorsed by the Chairmen of Orange Walk South villages. Together, they will work to secure victory for the UDP in 2012 and beyond.

Prime Minister Barrow was extremely impressed by the turnout and enthusiasm of the crowd. He said, “Whenever you feel down, it is always a good idea to come to Guinea Grass.” The crowds at the rallies are getting bigger at every stop on the PM’s tour. He said, “If there was any uncertainty on whether elections should be called early, that has gone out the door today.”  Once again, PM Barrow did most of his speech in Spanish. He started by expressing his great respect for Marco Pech, who was offered a large sum of money to vote against the government during the Ninth Amendment debate. Pech rejected the offer and chose national pride over the bribe. For that Prime Minister Barrow said, “‘nough respect to Marco Pech.” He then went on to highlight some of the social programs introduced by this government and pledged that through its social justice agenda the UDP administration will continue fighting on behalf of the marginalized people of Belize. -1 6 0 53 2/2/2012 06:00:00 64 Shane D. Williams 0/0/0000 00:00:00 0 0 0/0/0000 00:00:00 2/2/2012 06:00:00 0/0/0000 00:00:00 show_title= link_titles= show_intro= show_section= link_section= show_category= link_category= show_vote= show_author= show_create_date= show_modify_date= show_pdf_icon= show_print_icon= show_email_icon= language= keyref= readmore= 1 0 2 0 2380 robots= author= 4337 Weedy’s High and Bye weedys-high-and-bye

(intro.) It’s like I don’t care about nothing man...
Roll another joint...
ooohh
la da dada la da da la la da da

I was gonna run for Caribbean Shores until I got high
I was gonna get up and fight Santi but then I got high
My mind is still messed up and I know why

Chorus:
Because I got high
Because I got high
Because I got high

I was gonna go talk to Johnny before I got high
I could’a cheated and I could’a paid but I got high
I’m thinking of running the next time and I know why
chorus
I was gonna go to work but then Johnny said Why?
I just got a new promotion but Francis put me in the Sty!
Now I’m dreaming and I know why
chorus
I was gonna go to the polls before I got high
I was gonna tell Joe to pay but then I got high
They charge Joe 1 million and I know why
chorus
I was gonna run for Caribbean Shores but I was high
I was gonna step up to Santi but I was high
Now I’m a yesterday has been-  because I got high
chorus
I was gonna pay people to vote until I got high
I wasn’t gonna run against the land hog but then I got high
Now the Ralph is not giving me any money and I know why
chorus
I messed up my entire political life because I got high
I lost my Job at BTB because I got high say
Now Francis says I’m sleeping with Johnny cause I got high
chorus
I’m gonna step down and stop singing this song because I’m high
I’m singing this whole thing because I’m high
And if I won’t get a single vote I’ll know why!

Cause I’m high
Cause I’m high
Cause I’m high
lala da dadada la da dada shoo be do be do was kibitty do da dada la
get jiggy with it scubby doo by wa

-1 6 0 53 2/2/2012 06:00:00 62 0/0/0000 00:00:00 0 0 0/0/0000 00:00:00 2/2/2012 06:00:00 0/0/0000 00:00:00 show_title= link_titles= show_intro= show_section= link_section= show_category= link_category= show_vote= show_author= show_create_date= show_modify_date= show_pdf_icon= show_print_icon= show_email_icon= language= keyref= readmore= 1 0 1 0 549 robots= author= 4338 Police officer charged with extortion police-officer-charged-with-extortion

AmirA police officer, attached to the Ladyville formation, is currently facing criminal charges after he extorted money  from a man. That officer is police constable #1124, Amir Moh.


Police says that 48 year-old Alexander Tate, a medical technician of mile 18 on the Western Highway, made a report  of the incident.  He says that at around 10:30 last Thursday, he was being towed in a silver Toyota Tercel from Belize to Lords Bank.

Tate told police that when he arrived at mile 8 on the Northern Highway, he was stopped by PC Moh, who told him that he had committed a traffic violation since the vehicle he was in did not have on insurance. Moh allegedly told Tate that if wished not to be charged, then he must hand over money.

Tate said that he then told the officer that he would do so, but after he returned from Lord’s Bank. Tate then recorded the serial numbers on 7 ten-dollar bills, came back and handed them over. He then immediately called police and reported the incident. Quick police response led officers to find Moh at the same checkpoint with all the bills, whose serials had been recorded.

Police immediately arrested and charged Moh, and on Friday, he was arraigned in Magistrate's Court on the charge of extortion.

He was unrepresented when he appeared before Chief Magistrate Anne Marie Smith. He pleaded not guilty to the charge and was granted bail of $1,000 plus a surety. In order for his bail not to be confiscated, Moh must stay away from Tate and he must report to the Orange Walk Police Station every Friday between 7 a.m. and 7 p.m. He is to return to court on February 23, 2012.

-1 1 0 39 2/2/2012 06:00:00 62 0/0/0000 00:00:00 0 0 0/0/0000 00:00:00 2/2/2012 06:00:00 0/0/0000 00:00:00 show_title= link_titles= show_intro= show_section= link_section= show_category= link_category= show_vote= show_author= show_create_date= show_modify_date= show_pdf_icon= show_print_icon= show_email_icon= language= keyref= readmore= 1 0 8 0 1089 robots= author= 4339 Accused of drug trafficking accused-of-drug-trafficking

ShaquilleOn Tuesday January 31, 2012, 20-year-old Shaquille Almendarez, a Taxi driver and resident of Electric Avenue appeared in Magistrate’s Court before Senior Magistrate Sharon Frazer where he was charged with drug trafficking. He pleaded not guilty and he was offered bail in the sum of 6 thousand dollars plus two sureties of 3 thousand dollars each. He is to reappear in court on March 20th.


Almendarez was charged after he was caught by police on Monday January 30th.  According to police, at about 4:10 p.m., they were on mobile patrol on Electric Avenue when  they spotted Almendarez standing in the area. When he saw them, he ran away carrying a black plastic bag in his hand.  Police set chase after Almendarez and that’s when officers saw him throw the bag over a nearby zinc fence. The bag was retrieved by police. Almendarez was detain and escorted to the Queen Street Police Station. -1 1 0 39 2/2/2012 06:00:00 62 0/0/0000 00:00:00 0 0 0/0/0000 00:00:00 2/2/2012 06:00:00 0/0/0000 00:00:00 show_title= link_titles= show_intro= show_section= link_section= show_category= link_category= show_vote= show_author= show_create_date= show_modify_date= show_pdf_icon= show_print_icon= show_email_icon= language= keyref= readmore= 1 0 7 0 668 robots= author= 4340 Man skips bail costs his sister big bucks man-skips-bail-costs-his-sister-big-bucks

MelodyOne woman’s decision to prevent her brother from going to jail turned out to be a costly venture as she was ordered to pay a $2500 fine.


On Tuesday January 31, Melody Baizar appeared in court where she was fined 2,500 dollars after her brother Sylvin Bodden had not been showing up in court. She had provided bail for him on a charge of obtaining property by deception.  Bodden had been skipping his court appearances since July 11th of last year. It was not until January 3rd that a bench warrant was issued for his arrest and police have since caught up with him. He appeared in court alongside his sister. His excuse was that he was unable to attend court because he was sick. The Magistrate did not buy the story and revoked his bail and remanded him to prison.

For her part, Baiza rtold the court that she had no idea that her brother was skipping his court appearances. She agreed to pay the fine but asked the court if she could make payments on two week installments.

-1 1 0 39 2/2/2012 06:00:00 62 0/0/0000 00:00:00 0 0 0/0/0000 00:00:00 2/2/2012 06:00:00 0/0/0000 00:00:00 show_title= link_titles= show_intro= show_section= link_section= show_category= link_category= show_vote= show_author= show_create_date= show_modify_date= show_pdf_icon= show_print_icon= show_email_icon= language= keyref= readmore= 1 0 6 0 878 robots= author= 4341 Men charged for bogus gun licenses men-charged-for-bogus-gun-licenses

AlwinThree men currently stand charged for criminal offenses related to alleged bogus gun licenses which the police department is saying was received through proper procedures.


They are 31 year-old Alwin Gonzalez, a car dealer of Guadalupe Street, Belize City; 36 year-old Answorth Dawson, an ex-police officer who now works as a mechanic in Sand Hill Village; and 31-year-old Police Constable, Orlando Antonio Jimenez, a resident of San Ignacio Town.

 According to the police, at around 1 p.m. on January 27, Dawson and Gonzalez visited Benny’s Home Center, at 2 ½ miles on the Northern Highway. They went to an employee and presented identification cards which stated that they are legitimate holders of gun licenses. It was their intention to buy 9mm pistols.

 When the store manager asked the men to present the letter of approval from the Commissioner off Police, the men didn’t have it on them. According to the police, this is a necessary step in order to prove that the men did legitimately own gun licenses.

 Because the men couldn’t produce this document, the store manager called the police, and the men were arrested and charged with uttering upon a false document.

 Dawson was arraigned in Belize City Magistrate’s Court #5 before Magistrate Hettie Mae Stuart; he was represented by attorney Arthur Saldivar.

 Magistrate Stuart informed him that the matter will be treated as an indictable offense, and as a result, no plea would be taken. The prosecution objected to bail on the grounds of the very brazen and serious nature of the offense; the prosecution also cited that Dawson is a flight risk.

 Saldivar urged the court to grant bail to his client stating that there was no forgery done on the identification card. He even added that on the back of the card, the signature of the Commissioner of Police is clearly, visible which authenticates it as an official and legitimate document.

After listening to both the prosecution and the defence, Magistrate Stuart remanded Dawson into custody until February 27.


Alwin Gonzalez was set to be arraigned before Magistrate Stuart also, but Saldivar, who also represented him jointly with attorney Anthony Sylvester, petitioned to the court that the matter be heard before another magistrate.
As a result, Gonzalez appeared before Magistrate Robert Ordonez.

His attorneys, Saldivar and Sylvester, argued the same exact points that Saldivar had presented to Magistrate Stuart, but they were able to convince Magistrate Ordonez to grant bail of $5,000 on a technicality in law which governs uttering of false documents.

The Attorneys presented that in the Criminal Code, a gun license is not a document on which an accused can utter falsely upon.

Constable Jimenez, who was accused of giving the licenses to Gonzalez and Dawson, was arraigned in Belmopan Magistrate’s Court before Magistrate Linsbert Willis. He was charged with forgery of an official document.

The matter is an indictable offense, and no plea was taken from him in court. He was offered bail in the sum of $5,000 plus on surety of the same, which he was able to meet.
Jimenez is expected to return to court on March 23, 2012.

-1 1 0 39 2/2/2012 06:00:00 62 0/0/0000 00:00:00 0 0 0/0/0000 00:00:00 2/2/2012 06:00:00 0/0/0000 00:00:00 show_title= link_titles= show_intro= show_section= link_section= show_category= link_category= show_vote= show_author= show_create_date= show_modify_date= show_pdf_icon= show_print_icon= show_email_icon= language= keyref= readmore= 1 0 5 0 1100 robots= author= 4342 Gas attendant accused of stealing from his workplace gas-attendant-accused-of-stealing-from-his-workplace

DouglasOn Monday January 30th, gas attendant, 30 year old Douglas Robert Carter, was arraigned in the Belize City Magistrate’s on a single count of theft for allegedly stealing from his workplace.


Carter appeared in Court #5 before Magistrate Hettie Mae Stewart where he was read a single charge of theft.  Allegations are that on January 20, he dishonestly appropriated the sum of $2,350 from Belize Diesel Service Center.  In court, Carter pleaded not guilty to the charge and bail was offered to him in the sum of $3,000 plus one surety of the same amount.  Carter was unable to meet his bail because he has an outstanding fine of $255 and $55 due to the court for previous incidents.  He must pay these outstanding fines before he could be bailed on this theft allegation.  Douglas Robert Carter is due back in court #5 on March 5. -1 1 0 39 2/2/2012 06:00:00 62 0/0/0000 00:00:00 0 0 0/0/0000 00:00:00 2/2/2012 06:00:00 0/0/0000 00:00:00 show_title= link_titles= show_intro= show_section= link_section= show_category= link_category= show_vote= show_author= show_create_date= show_modify_date= show_pdf_icon= show_print_icon= show_email_icon= language= keyref= readmore= 1 0 4 0 1004 robots= author= 4343 Tyrell Hyde lands relative in court again tyrell-hyde-lands-relative-in-court-again

In August of this year, Glen Tillett, a well-known talk show host and journalist was accused of handling stolen goods from a burglary where computers and other items were stolen from the Salvadorean Embassy in Belmopan.  Police say they found some of the stolen items at a home where Tillett and his daughter were present.Tillett said he had no idea the items were at the home as it was allegedly brought there by Rhenea Nunez’s nephew, Tyrel Hyde.


Hyde was back in court on Wednesday February 1 and this time, he had another of his relatives in trouble with the law. Hyde, 19, appeared in Belmopan Magistrate’s Court before Magistrate Adolph Lucas, along with his aunt Khaila Nunez-Moralez. They were read separate criminal charges.  Hyde was charged for burglary as it is alleged that he burglarized the home of Kent Herrera on Sunday, January 29 in Belmopan. Moralez was charged with a single count of abetment to burglary. She is accused of aiding Hyde in the crime of burglary.

Allegations are that on Sunday, January 29, Hyde entered the home of Kent Herrera where he allegedly stole a 52 inch flat screen television, 8 bottles of red and white wine, 2 bottles of Tequila, a bottle of Vodka, and a bottle of Whisky all to a total of $6,360.00.

In court, the two were unrepresented and the court prosecutor objected to bail stating that both defendants were before the court on similar charges before where conditions were set on their bail. One of those conditions being that they were not to come before the court on any other charges while the case is ongoing. Magistrate Lucas nonetheless, offered them bail. He went ahead and offered both defendants bail in the sum of $5,000 each plus one surety of the same amount which they met. Both Hyde and Nunez-Moralez are due back in the Belmopan Magistrate’s Court on March 22. -1 1 0 39 2/2/2012 06:00:00 62 0/0/0000 00:00:00 0 0 0/0/0000 00:00:00 2/2/2012 06:00:00 0/0/0000 00:00:00 show_title= link_titles= show_intro= show_section= link_section= show_category= link_category= show_vote= show_author= show_create_date= show_modify_date= show_pdf_icon= show_print_icon= show_email_icon= language= keyref= readmore= 1 0 3 0 1056 robots= author= 4344 Guilty of drug trafficking guilty-of-drug-trafficking

IdollyOn Tuesday January 31st, 19 year old Idolly Neal appeared in Magistrate’s court to answer to charges of drug trafficking. The former UB student had been busted on board a passenger bus in January of  2011. At the time police had boarded the bus and found her in possession of 200 grams of marijuana in a kitbag  she was carrying inside an Albion Bus heading from Orange Walk to Belize City.


Her trial began in December of  2011, and at the commencement, when the police officer, who made the bust, was testifying in the case, Neal, a resident of Trial Farm Orange Walk, changed her not guilty plea to guilty.   She was asked if she needed time to consider her plea because drug trafficking carries a mandatory jail term of 3 years plus a fine of $10,000. When she appeared on Tuesday, Neal told the court that she had enough time to think about her situation and maintained her guilty plea for drug trafficking.  Neal told Senior Magistrate Sharon Frazer that since the incident, she has not been able to continue her education because she is unable to focus in class. She then threw herself to the mercy of the court and begged for leniency.  During the trial, she admitted that the bag of weed was found on her lap and said that she had no knowledge of the weed being inside it. She said that she got the bag from a man and was only holding it until the next day.

The Senior Magistrate then told her that it was an unfortunate situation she found herself in but it appeared that the man set her up.   She told her that since she is a first time offender, she can use the proviso and not impose the mandatory jail term of 3 years, however she must impose the maximum fine where she is to pay a $10,000. Neal was given until April 30 of this year to pay the fine in default 3 years imprisonment.
During the trial, a police officer who made the bust testified that at about 5:00 p.m., the bus, heading to Belize City from Orange Walk was stopped at the Crooked Tree Junction where Neal was seen with a kit bag.   According to the officer, he smelled the strong aroma of marijuana. That prompted him to conduct a search of Neal’s bag.  Inside it, he found the marijuana wrapped very loosely inside the bag among other items.

-1 1 0 39 2/2/2012 06:00:00 62 0/0/0000 00:00:00 0 0 0/0/0000 00:00:00 2/2/2012 06:00:00 0/0/0000 00:00:00 show_title= link_titles= show_intro= show_section= link_section= show_category= link_category= show_vote= show_author= show_create_date= show_modify_date= show_pdf_icon= show_print_icon= show_email_icon= language= keyref= readmore= 1 0 2 0 1195 robots= author= 4345 Murder Acquittal murder-acquittal

AlexanderOn Monday January 30th, Alexander Underwood, 22, walked away free from the June 20th, 2009 murder of Jonathan Faber. He was gunned down by the cemetery in Yarborough area


Underwood appeared before Justice Adolph Lucas for the murder after being un remand for 2 years and 7 months.  Underwood, who was represented by attorney, Alifah Elrington-Hyde, was acquitted of the murder. The acquittal came after his fate was placed in the hands of a 12 member jury made up of 9 women and three men.

At the close of the prosecution’s case, Elrington-Hyde made a no case submission in stating that the crown had not made a prima facie case against Underwood and that there was no evidence for the court to lead the case to the jury for deliberation.  She asked Justice Lucas to order the jury to acquit her client based on those findings.   The judge agreed with her submission and he ordered the jury to return a not guilty verdict for Underwood, setting him free of Faber’s murder. 

 The trial began last Monday, when the 12 member jury was selected to hear the case.  Prosecutor, Shamilla Williams had called three of six witnesses but they did not show up for the case. The witnesses included the brother of the deceased, who had identified his body to police as well as the main witness, another man. With that, Williams closed her case against Underwood. 

 Last Thursday, the judge ruled that a group identification, which was carried out by the police, was inadmissible in the trial against Underwood.    Underwood had refused to be placed on an identification parade and despite his refusal, the police still placed him on a group identification where the alleged main witness had picked him out as the culprit. At the end of a voir dire, judge ruled that in his view, Underwood’s constitutional rights were violated when the police placed him in a group identification parade.  He has also commented during his ruling that a man should not be forced to give evidence against himself.

On June 20, 2009, at about 2:00 p.m., Jonathan Faber and Orin Michael were hanging out by the old cemetery in the Yarborough area, when its alleged that Underwood approached them and began to fire shots in their direction.  As a result, Faber was hit as many as six times to the body.  He later died as a result of his gunshot injuries. 

-1 1 0 39 2/2/2012 06:00:00 62 0/0/0000 00:00:00 0 0 0/0/0000 00:00:00 2/2/2012 06:00:00 0/0/0000 00:00:00 show_title= link_titles= show_intro= show_section= link_section= show_category= link_category= show_vote= show_author= show_create_date= show_modify_date= show_pdf_icon= show_print_icon= show_email_icon= language= keyref= readmore= 1 0 1 0 1168 robots= author= 4346 Prime Minister Announces Date of General Election prime-minister-announces-date-of-general-election

PMJanuary 31, 2012
Statement by Hon. Dean Barrow, Prime Minister of Belize

My Fellow Belizeans, I have been proud and grateful to lead the United Democratic Party Government since February of 2008. And we have accomplished much in this first term. Acting always for the people and with the support of the people, our overall record is a stellar one. Economic growth has been consistent and we have recorded gains every year but one. This has been despite the continuing global crisis, despite the vagaries of nature, despite freak storms and hurricanes, and despite the super bond.


We have given income tax relief to all employees on fixed salaries. And we have given GST and import duty relief to every single consumer. We have, for the first time in our nation’s history, chartered comprehensive pro-poor and pro- people programmes. These have included monthly cost-of-living allowances, subsidized food baskets, and cash transfers to thousands of families. We have awarded 300 dollar grants to first and second year high school students across the country; and educational opportunities have been expanded in unprecedented ways. We have built a record number of new classrooms, given a record number of scholarships, and we have excelled at creating second-chance, remedial, vocational, and apprenticeship initiatives. We have found resources to do new housing construction countrywide, and we have poured millions into home repairs and home improvement. In addition, we have written off almost fifteen thousand mortgages at the Ministry of Housing and the Social Security Board, allowing all those families burdened by repayment obligations to now own their homes free and clear. We have pushed infrastructure development in a way that has never been seen in Belize; and our roads and bridges network, especially in the South and North, has immeasurably improved as a consequence. The key to unlocking the foreign funding for all this, has of course been the fact that we have returned our homeland to credibility and honest stewardship.

Our social justice and employment outreach, has also succeeded in attacking the root causes of crime in Belize; and has produced the gang truce and the signal reduction in the murder rate that we are so thankfully witnessing now.

We have also enshrined nationalism as a paramount feature of our Constitution and our political culture. We have given the people control of their essential utilities. And as a result, everyone is now enjoying lower electricity rates, lower water rates and lower telephone rates. This, together with the restoration of integrity and accountability in governance, is perhaps the greatest jewel in the crown of UDP achievements.

It is on this basis of all this that I come before you at this time. You, the people of this country, are our comfort and our strength. You enable and empower us. You are also our monitors and our judges. Politically, we answer only to you. Still, the forces opposed to our nationalism and our social justice continue to fight. At home and abroad they assault our pro-poor and pro-people policies, and some of them claim to have you on their side. We reject that and know they are wrong. But as proof we want a clear reaffirmation now of the mandate for us to continue and expand our mission. We want you to arm us and support us so we can tell the world that there will be no turning back. That there will be no compromise of our political and Constitutional gains. That we will forge unwaveringly ahead in our crusade to produce development based on justice; based on greater social investment; based on a larger financial and economic space; based on equality of opportunity; based on a bigger safety net; and based always on lifting up those at the margins.

We therefore ask for your clear instructions to drive the naysayers back; to do something about the super bond; to overhaul the tax code and further spur economic growth; to reform the public sector and make open vote workers part of the established staff; to roll out NHI countrywide in a sustainable manner; to eliminate financial uncompetitiveness; to lower interest rates and to establish a national bank; to rationalize the sugar and citrus industries for immediate viability and longer-term prosperity; and to realign existing ministries and create new ones in order to maximize efficiency.

Ladies and Gentlemen, you get the picture. We want both to consolidate and to strike out in new directions. We are confident that we have done well and have deserved your trust. But as we prepare to change gears and accelerate speed, there is only one way to know for sure. And that is to come back to you the people for your approval.

Accordingly, I have today advised His Excellency the Governor General to dissolve the National Assembly with effect from this Friday, February 3. On that day, a writ will be issued appointing the 17th of February as nomination day, and fixing Wednesday, March 7, 2012 as the date for the next general election. We will thus have both the municipal and general election on the same day. Now, elections in this country are always hard-fought, costly, and by their very nature divisive. Having the two in one will thus save the taxpayer money, and mean a single, quick healing process. Whoever wins can then get on straightaway with the business of binding up wounds and uniting our country; of governing in the best interest of all Belizeans; of continuing to meet the challenges of the unfavorable international climate.

Ladies and Gentlemen, My Fellow Belizeans: I remind all of us that we have an enviable record for peaceful elections. I appeal to all political parties and candidates to ensure that we maintain that record. The Public Officers that will oversee the process are professionals, and will guarantee that, as always, the elections will be free and fair. Of course, we will also be inviting international observers to come and help make sure of the integrity of our balloting.
As we prepare, then, to exercise once more this most sacred of all our political rights, the right to vote, I close by praying now, more than ever: God bless Belize! -1 1 0 40 2/2/2012 06:00:00 62 2/2/2012 21:23:30 64 0 0/0/0000 00:00:00 2/2/2012 06:00:00 0/0/0000 00:00:00 show_title= link_titles= show_intro= show_section= link_section= show_category= link_category= show_vote= show_author= show_create_date= show_modify_date= show_pdf_icon= show_print_icon= show_email_icon= language= keyref= readmore= 4 0 11 0 1697 robots= author= 4347 Immigration Builds a Nation!! - New Belizeans Thank Government for Support immigration-builds-a-nation-new-belizeans-thank-government-for-support

PMMany Belizeans raised concerns about the recent spurt in naturalization of immigrants. Several wild allegations were hurled but not one shred of evidence of wrong-doing has been materialized. That is because officials of the Immigration Department were extremely professional in the screening of applicants. Every single person, who received their naturalization document, was deserving and worthy of being called a Belizean.


During the official ceremony for Prime Minister Barrow’s visit to Orange Walk South on Sunday, January 29, about twenty recently naturalized Belizeans took the stage to thank Prime Minister Barrow for supporting their right to citizenship. They paraded with the Belizean flag and begged for the Prime Minister’s autograph. One woman said, “I am so proud to be a Belizean.”

It was a spectacular phenomenon to see them expressing such pride in their Belizean nationality. Most natural-born Belizeans have never paraded with the Belizean flag. In speaking to one of the recently naturalized women, she said that some of the things they were saying on the radio and television about the process really hurt. She spoke specifically about being called “alien”, “criminals” and “leeches”. She has been living in Belize for twenty-six years and has a twenty-five-year-old son, who has been serving in the Belize Defense Force for over four years. Her son is one of her four Belizean-born children. As a member of the Belize Defense Force her son has been on numerous border patrol tours of duty. She said that she had always wanted to file for citizenship but was afraid of the process. She was afraid of what would happen if she did not meet the criteria for citizenship. She said that it was one of the happiest days of her life when she was sworn in as a Belizean.

Her story is very common. Many of the recently naturalized Belizeans have children working in the public service and making significant contributions to their country. Many of the recently naturalized Belizeans work in the agricultural sector and play a vital role in national food security. They have all been here for countless years and lived as law-abiding undocumented Belizeans. Undocumented Belizeans because though they had no official claim to name, Belize is the only home they know.

Belize, like every country outside of Africa, was built by immigrants. Immigrants leave their homeland to find better opportunities abroad. The flock of immigrants to Belize is a testament of how blessed this country is. The opportunities being taken by these immigrants are those that us born- Belizeans have taken for granted and totally neglected. None of us want to work in the citrus industry picking oranges, grapefruits and limes for a living; they embrace the opportunity. For years, we have enjoyed eating fried green plantain but have never thought of bagging and mass selling; they embrace the opportunity. For years, we have loved eating boil corn but few boiled them in great numbers for sale; they embrace the opportunity. For years, we have enjoyed eating watermelon, pineapple and other fruits but we did not slice them up and bag for sale; they embrace the opportunity. These are just a few examples of how the Central American immigrants have embraced opportunities that we born Belizeans have taken for granted and totally neglected.

Most immigrants are law-abiding and only expose the fact that perhaps we have been cursed by our blessings. Our low population and vast resources have caused us to develop a low competitive spirit. We are too laid back as a people and rarely take advantage of the resources in front of us. These immigrants come from countries with large population and there is a competition for every opportunity available. Perhaps, their competitive nature will galvanize us as a people and boost our innovative juices and increase production.  -1 1 0 40 2/2/2012 06:00:00 64 Shane D. Williams 0/0/0000 00:00:00 0 0 0/0/0000 00:00:00 2/2/2012 06:00:00 0/0/0000 00:00:00 show_title= link_titles= show_intro= show_section= link_section= show_category= link_category= show_vote= show_author= show_create_date= show_modify_date= show_pdf_icon= show_print_icon= show_email_icon= language= keyref= readmore= 1 0 10 0 1418 robots= author= 4348 Buggers Need to Worry About Those Not Making Noise - UNIBAM Case May Do More Harm than Good for Gay Community buggers-need-to-worry-about-those-not-making-noise-unibam-case-may-do-more-harm-than-good-for-gay-community

On Monday, January 30, UNIBAM’s case against the Government of Belize was heard before Justice Michelle Arana in the Belize Supreme Court UNIBAM wants sodomy to be decriminalized in Belize.


In court, attorneys for the Government and the Churches submitted that UNIBAM had no grounds in the case because as an organization it has no constitutionally guaranteed rights. Therefore, UNIBAM should be removed as a claimant in the case. Submissions were also made to strike out experts that were to appear on behalf of UNIBAM because they were not properly introduced. Justice Arana reserved judgment on the submissions for a later date. If UNIBAM is struck out as a claimant, the case will still proceed on the constitutional arguments because Caleb Orozco, UNIBAM’s leader, was also listed as a claimant and is guaranteed fundamental rights as a human.  

During the hearing, a few church members paraded in the area. The Church has been the most outspoken opponent of UNIBAM’s agenda and Orozco had some harsh words for the church in a recent interview with 7 News. He said, “My friends at the Catholic Church need to check their billion dollar budget; my good friends at the Anglican Church need to check their overdraft, and my good friends at the Evangelical Association need to check their pastors.” Orozco needs to be careful in his movement. While he seems prepared to take on the church, he should be worried about a much more dangerous opponent, the silent public.

While most Belizeans are not speaking out, anti-gay sentiment is at an all time high. Many are questioning UNIBAM’s motives. Some believe that they should leave well enough alone because nobody is bothering them. One man said, “It’s not like police are breaking down their doors and arresting them for their bedroom business so why go to court.” Some feel that they want to throw their alternative lifestyles down our throat. It is now common in casual conversations to hear people speak of hurting “one of them”. Belize is one of the most tolerant countries but if pushed, the population will push back and UNIBAM will truly see just how strong the opposition to its homosexual agenda really is. -1 1 0 40 2/2/2012 06:00:00 64 Shane D. Williams 0/0/0000 00:00:00 0 0 0/0/0000 00:00:00 2/2/2012 06:00:00 0/0/0000 00:00:00 show_title= link_titles= show_intro= show_section= link_section= show_category= link_category= show_vote= show_author= show_create_date= show_modify_date= show_pdf_icon= show_print_icon= show_email_icon= language= keyref= readmore= 1 0 9 0 2093 robots= author= 4349 Where 7 News is Failing where-7-news-is-failing

JohnnyThe term “objective media house” is approaching the oxymoronic realm. In Belize, there are some media houses that are always pro-government. They are gentle in their reporting of government issues. There are media houses that are always anti-government. Their main objective is to bash any government that is in power.  Their reports are based on the propaganda of the party they serve. 7 News doesn’t fall under any of those categories. Though they strive and sometimes overstretch for sensationalism, 7 News is perhaps the only true objective media house in Belize. They are the most credible news source and their news director is the best journalist in Belize. 7 News calls a spade a spade and such unbiased reporting has attracted a legion of devoted viewers. However, 7 News has chosen to keep its viewers in the dark on an issue of national importance.


On September 6, 2011 the hosts of Wave Radio’s “Fus Ting Da Mawnin” shed light on a report in Wikileaks which claimed that Johnny Briceno, then Leader of the Opposition, accepted a US$1.5 million bribe from a “politically connected local company” in exchange for a Production Sharing Agreement (oil exploration contract). The report stated that a US based oil company named Lagoon Resources did everything necessary to get the PSA, including offering the government higher royalties and production sharing rates but the contract went to the local company. The report further states that the money was routed to Briceno through the purchase of a cable television company in northern Belize.

Briceno appeared on the lead segment of 7 News later that day and said that the allegation was “a lie”. He said that his family did buy cable companies but they “are still paying the bank”. Vasquez then challenged him to produce the documents showing that his family is paying the bank for the purchase of the companies. Briceno then stated boldly, “I could take you to check it. I have absolutely no problem. I have nothing to hide. That was on December 6. Since then there has been October, November, December, January and now February - five months and Briceno has yet to produce the documents he spoke boldly about. Those are documents that could clear his name from international embarrassment.

7 News, the most credible news source in Belize, and Jules Vasquez, the best journalist in the country, have refused to press Briceno on the issue. 7 News was on the butane issue for two weeks straight and provided updates weeks later. However, since that interview aired, there has not been a single mention of the alleged bribe, bank documents or lack thereof. They allowed Briceno to shoot down an extremely credible charge with an arrogant declaration “I have nothing to hide”. Since then, Belizeans have been waiting for him to produce the papers and begging 7 News for an update, even if it is just a one liner. 7 News has turned a blind eye to viewers request and it has caused many to wonder why is Johnny Briceno untouchable. Is it that 7 News is afraid to lose its advertising contract with Speed Net? Or is there another reason, one that would cause even greater harm to the credibility of Belize’s most objective media house?