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Oceana’s Moral Victory? Print E-mail
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Thursday, 21 February 2013 00:00

AudreyOn Tuesday, February 5th, arguments were concluded in the court room of Justice Oswel Legall on Oceana’s challenge against six Production Sharing Agreements (PSA) granted to various oil exploration companies between 2005 and 2007.


Oceana and co-claimants, the Belize Coalition to save our Natural Heritage and Citizens Organized for Liberty through Action (COLA), are being represented by Godfrey Smith, who was once the Attorney General of the same administration that handed out the contracts in question. The PSAs range from blocs of two hundred thousand to two million acres and stretch across inland and marine areas. They were awarded to Island Oil Belize Ltd., Miles Tropical Energy Ltd., PetroBelize Company Ltd., Princess Petroleum Ltd., Providence Energy Belize Ltd., and Sol Oil Belize Ltd. The claimants argued that the PSAs were granted in breach of the provisions of the Petroleum Act because the companies have not proven they have the ability to conduct oil exploration.

The Government is being represented by Senior Counsel Denys Barrow. Barrow argued that it is way too late to be challenging contracts that were signed more than five years earlier. In August 2012, the Government even applied for the challenge to be struck out since the Limitation Act requires that an action against a public body or person must be filed within one year from the date the cause of action arose. Justice Legall ruled against the strike out motion but Government’s argument still stands. Furthermore, Barrow sees even less of a case by the claimant since their challenge is not against the decision to approve the contract but the legality of the contracts themselves.

Justice Legall has reserved judgment for a date before the month of April. However, Oceana seems to be well aware that their case has a small chance of success and its Vice-President is already holding on to moral victories. Audrey Matura-Shepherd said to court reporters at the conclusion of the hearing, “It is a victory to even have the matter heard before the Supreme Court.

-1 1 0 40 2/7/2013 06:00:00 62 0/0/0000 00:00:00 0 0 0/0/0000 00:00:00 2/7/2013 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 0 115 robots= author= 5856 Unions consider Salary Adjustment Proposals unions-consider-salary-adjustment-proposals

(L-R)On Friday, February 1st the Prime Minister, Hon. Dean Barrow met with union representatives to discuss a way forward in their request for salary increases for members of the public service which includes the membership of the Association of Public Service Senior Managers (APSSM), the Belize National Teacher's Union (BNTU) and the Public Service Union (PSU). The meeting was a cordial one in which there was a proposal for salary adjustment.


In a joint release from the unions, they announced that they met on Saturday, February 2nd to consider the proposals. These proposals ask that a salary adjustment be based on a formula of actual recurrent revenue outrun. The financial year 2012 - 2013 is being set as the starting base year for comparison. Additionally, the agreement is to cover financial years 2014-2017 with the maximum salary adjustment for any year not to exceed 10% of the wages and wage related grants. If wage increases can be granted, salary adjustment payouts will commence in July 2014 and it will be retroactive to April 1st, 2014. The proposals will apply to all teachers, public officers and pensioners and the annual increments will continue.

According to the unions, they will form two working committees with one of those finalizing the salary adjustment agreeement and the other to verify figures and look at revenue collection strengthening and improvement. Negotiations on the other aspects of the collective bargaining agreements are to continue.

The Union Council will now return to the general membership for endorsement of the proposals.

-1 1 0 40 2/7/2013 06:00:00 62 0/0/0000 00:00:00 0 0 0/0/0000 00:00:00 2/7/2013 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= 5857 Three-year-old burns to death three-year-old-burns-to-death

DanelyA 3-year-old toddler lost her life in a house fire which took place in the early morning hours of Monday, February 4th. According to fire authorities, they received information of a house fire sometime around 4:10a.m. on Monday in the village of San Narciso in the Corozal district. Upon their arrival, they saw a wooden house with zinc roofing measuring approximately 22ft by 26ft which had been completely burnt. What remained of the fire was extinguished and fire personnel conducted a search inside the remains of the house where they found the charred body of a 3-year-old baby girl identified as Danely Shaniri Guadalupe Cabrera. The child's body was found under a metal crib and was later transported to the Corozal Community Hospital where she was pronounced dead on arrival.


The child's mother,40-year-old Ramona Cabrera, a shop keeper at Corozal Free Zone, was transported to the Corozal Community Hospital with first degree burns on her face, back and 2nd degree burns to her left and right arm.

Initial investigation revealed that Cabrera was sleeping with the child when at about 4:00am Monday morning she was awaken by fire on her mattress. She attempted to take out the mattress but got burnt and then ran out for help leaving her child inside the house.

The house does not have any electricity and the cause of fire is suspected to be from a lit candle in one of the rooms.

-1 1 0 59 2/7/2013 06:00:00 62 0/0/0000 00:00:00 0 0 0/0/0000 00:00:00 2/7/2013 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 55 robots= author= 5858 Holy Redeemer, St. John Vianney, Salvation Army and St. Martin De Porres win in Primary Schools Softball holy-redeemer-st-john-vianney-salvation-army-and-st-martin-de-porres-win-in-primary-schools-softball

HolyThe Belize City Primary Schools Softball Competition continued at the Rogers Stadium over the last week of play with a number of games on the schedule.

On Friday, February 1st, in the first of two games played in the girls’ competition, St. John Vianney School defeated Salvation Army School by the score of 16-4. The winning pitcher was Princella Samuels and the losing pitcher was Britney Meighan.

In the second girls’ game, Muslim Community School defeated Buttonwood Bay Nazarene by the score of 17-1. The winning pitcher was Essenie Ciego and the losing pitcher was Shenelle Magandi.

In the first boys’ game played, St. Mary’s School defeated Salvation Army School by the score of 10-3. The winning pitcher was Gilbert Cal and the losing pitcher was Keron Patnett. In the second game, it was St. Martin De Porres won over Queen Square Anglican by the score of 30-0. The winning pitcher was Derrick Martinez and the losing pitcher was Ashton Lawrence.

The competition continued on Thursday, January 31st, in the first girls game played, Unity Presbyterian blanked Wesley Upper School by the score of 7-0. The winning pitcher for Unity Presbyterian School was Alison Arnold and the losing pitcher was Brianna Gillett. In the second girls’ game, Salvation Army School edged Central Christian School by the score of 14-2. The winning pitcher was Britney Meighan and the losing pitcher was Hannah Usher.

In the first game of the boys’ competition played, St. Martin De Porres won over Wesley Upper School by the score of 8-3. The winning pitcher was Glen Arzu and the losing pitcher was Christopher Cardinez. In the second boys’ game, Salvation Army School defeated Central Christian School by the score of 8-7. The winning pitcher was Keron Patnett and the losing pitcher was Trovett Flowers.

On Wednesday, January 30th, in the first game in the girls’ competition, Muslim Community ran all over Wesley Upper by the score of 18-0. The winning pitcher was Essenie Ciego and the losing pitcher was Erica Cadogan. In the second girls’ game, St. John Vianney School defeated St. John’s Primary by the score of 6-0. The winning pitcher was Princella Samuels and the losing pitcher was Nia Jenkins.

In the first boys’ game, it was Queen Square Anglican winning over Wesley Upper School by the score of 11-4. The winning pitcher was Ashton Lawrence and the losing pitcher was Christopher Cardinez. In the second boys’ game, St. Mary’s Anglican School defeated St. John’s Primary by the score of 12-8. The winning pitcher was Gilbert Cal and the losing pitcher was Warren Smith.

-1 1 0 41 2/7/2013 06:00:00 62 0/0/0000 00:00:00 0 0 0/0/0000 00:00:00 2/7/2013 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 0 222 robots= author= 5859 Wesley College Girls to play for Central Region Football Title wesley-college-girls-to-play-for-central-region-football-title

The 2012-2013 Central Region Secondary Schools Football Competition is fast coming to an end at the MCC Grounds.

The semi finals series continued at the MCC Grounds on Tuesday, February 5th, 2013 with game two in both the female and male series. In the female series, Wesley College eliminated Excelsior High School by the score of 3-1. The goals for Wesley College were scored by Imane McKenzie, Kimberly Garcia and Shanice Neal. Meanwhile, the scorer for Excelsior High School was Dayna Miguel.

In the male game played, Excelsior High School defeated St. John’s College by the score of 3-2. The goals for Excelsior High School were scored by James Fitzgibbon while the goals for St. John’s College were scored by Tarique James.

On Friday, February 1st, in the first female game in the semi-final round, Wesley College blanked Excelsior High School by the score of 2-0. The goal scorers for Wesley College were Erica Milligan and Elisha Bernardez.

In the male game, St. John’s College defeated Excelsior High School by the score of 5-3. The goals for St. John’s College were scored by Dimitri Fabro (3), and Raheem Flowers (2). Meanwhile, the goals for Excelsior High School were scored by Kareem Flowers (2) and Tyrone Gabriel.

The semi finals continued on Saturday, February 2nd with two more games. In the second female series Anglican Cathedral College defeated St. Catherine Academy by the score of 1-0. The only goal of the game was an auto goal by Deidra Gill.

In the male game, it was Wesley College winning over Anglican Cathedral College by the score of 2-1. The goals for Wesley College were scored by Keron Young and Marques Stamp while the goal for Anglican Cathedral College was scored by Calvin Reneau.

The second and final games in this series is scheduled to be played on Wednesday, February 6th, at 4:30 pm. By the time we hit the streets early Thursday morning, the winner from this series will join Wesley College girls in the championship series that is scheduled to commence on Friday February 8, at 4:30 pm at the MCC Grounds.
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In the male competition, the winner from Wednesday’s game will meet SJC in the championship series. 

-1 1 0 41 2/7/2013 06:00:00 62 0/0/0000 00:00:00 0 0 0/0/0000 00:00:00 2/7/2013 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 87 robots= author= 5860 Telemedia to defend Interoffice Softball Title telemedia-to-defend-interoffice-softball-title

The Regular Season for the 2013 Belize City Interoffice competition is scheduled to commence this Friday night at Rogers Stadium with 2 games on the schedule.

The regular season will utilize the Double Round Robin Format with the top four teams advancing to the playoffs. The Playoffs will utilise the internationally used “Page System.”

The teams participating in this year’s competition are Telemedia (defending champion), Baby Ruth Baaba Shap, Kit Kat Baaba Shap, KHMH, BTL, Guardian/NSC, Tuff “E” Nuff, Belize Bank and BWSL.

-1 1 0 41 2/7/2013 06:00:00 62 0/0/0000 00:00:00 0 0 0/0/0000 00:00:00 2/7/2013 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 66 robots= author= 5861 Orange Walk Football finals this weekend orange-walk-football-finals-this-weekend

The 2012 Orange Walk Football Association 1st Division Opening Tournament will enter its championship round on Sunday, February 13th, 2013 at the People’s Stadium in Orange Walk Town.

In U-17 division championship game which is scheduled to commence at 1:30 pm, it will be White Eagles FC going up against San Lazaro Young Stars FC. In the main match of the day, it will be Guinea Grass United FC against the San Estevan FC.

In the semi finals round that came to an end on Sunday, February 13th, in game one, San Lazaro Revolution FC and San Estevan FC played to a 4-4 draw. The goal scorers for San Lazaro Revolution FC were Aris Serrano in the 20th minute of play, Carlos Jones in the 40th minute of play via a penalty kick, Darwin Sosa in the 65th minute of play, and Edil Tzi in the 73rd minute of play.

Meanwhile, the goals for the San Estevan FC were scored by Edwani Munoz in the 17th, 46th, 78th and 83rd minutes of play.

In game two, Guinea Grass United FC defeated Progresso FC by the score of 1-0. The only goal of the  game was scored by Hugo Canul in the 24th minute of play.

-1 1 0 41 2/7/2013 06:00:00 62 0/0/0000 00:00:00 0 0 0/0/0000 00:00:00 2/7/2013 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 0 101 robots= author= 5862 Premier League Competition begins This Weekend premier-league-competition-begins-this-weekend

The Premier League of Belize announces that its 2013 Closing Season Tournament is scheduled to commence on February 9th, 2013, with eight teams participating in this year’s competition.

The teams participating are the Belmopan Bandits (National Champions), Police United (National sub-champion), Placencia Assassins FC, Belize Defence Force FC, FC Belize, Verdes FC, FC San Felipe Barcelona and San Ignacio United FC.

-1 1 0 41 2/7/2013 06:00:00 62 0/0/0000 00:00:00 0 0 0/0/0000 00:00:00 2/7/2013 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 83 robots= author= 5863 High schools softball competition opens high-schools-softball-competition-opens

The  Central Region Secondary Schools Softball Competition opened on Wednesday, January 30th at the Rogers Stadium.

On Wednesday, January 30th, in the female game played, Nazarene High School upended Pallotti High School by the score of 28-0. The winning pitcher was Ashley Lucas and the losing pitcher was Marlette Martinez.

On Thursday, January 31st, in the only male game played, Anglican Cathedral College edged Maud Williams High School by the score of 9 - 7. The winning pitcher was Devaun Zuniga and the losing pitcher was C. Olivera.

The competition then continued on Friday, February 1st, 2013 with two more games in the female competition. In the first game played, Maud Williams High School forfeited to Edward P. Yorke High School. In the second female game, Ladyville Technical won over St. Catherine Academy via the forfeiture route.

On Saturday, February 2nd, in the only game played in the female competition Wesley College defeated Anglican Cathedral College by the score of 14 - 4.

-1 1 0 41 2/7/2013 06:00:00 62 0/0/0000 00:00:00 0 0 0/0/0000 00:00:00 2/7/2013 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 0 116 robots= author= 5864 No Tax Hikes! No Oil Revenue! No GDP Cut! No IMF!!! Legislature approves Restructured Superbond no-tax-hikes-no-oil-revenue-no-gdp-cut-no-imf-legislature-approves-restructured-superbond

PrimeOn Tuesday, February 12th, Prime Minister Barrow introduced a motion in the House of Representative that he refers to as a “promise fulfilled”. That motion is the “Government of Belize- External Debt Restructuring Motion, 2013”, which features new terms to the infamous Superbond. During a speech in San Jose Palmar Village in Orange Walk East on Sunday, February 19th, 2012 Prime Minister Barrow said:


“I am serving you all notice. Look out and get ready because Belize is coming. There is no doubt that the People's United Party, in terms of this Superbond, did a horrible thing to the people of Belize. But, I know from a long time that a wise man said it eons ago, 'You can't have a bad borrower, if you don't have a bad lender.' So all of you all out there, who were happy to lend the PUP this money, and burden us until thy kingdom come with this Superbond well hear this: we are coming back to you, and we are telling you that you will renegotiate that. You will take down that interest rate, and you will spread the maturity period out over a far longer time. We will stop paying that 8.5% and 80+ million dollars a year because we need that money to spend on the development of Belize for the people of this country.

In the House of Representatives on Tuesday, Prime Minister Barrow explained that not only was the debt restructuring team able to negotiate a deal that include a decrease in interest rates and longer maturity period, but they were also able to get a ten- percent principal haircut, which is equal to approximately BZ$108 million. The size of the new bond is US$529,928,800 with a twenty-five-year maturity period ending in 2038. The original maturity date for the Superbond was 2029. The interest rate for the new bonds from March 20th, 2013 to August 20th, 2017 is 5% to be paid every six months. After August 17th, 2017 the interest rate will be 6.767% until the final maturity date on February 20th, 2038. The original interest rate for the Superbond was 8.5%. Belize will experience debt relief of BZ$236 million from 2013 to 2017. In net present value, the new deal will see Belize pay 56.75 cents per every Superbond dollar. That is an overall reduction of 43.25%.

During the restructuring process, Belize stood firm in negotiations with bondholders despite pressure from the international financial institutions; including the U.S. Treasury Department. Prime Minister Barrow said, Even at the price of losing the partial IDB guarantee that we sought, this Government resisted the preposition of an IMF program notwithstanding the pressures brought to bear on us by the US Treasury, by the IMF itself and by the other IFIs.” It is no secret what an IMF program would mean for Belize. In 2011, the IMF released a report on Belize in which it recommended that the Government of Belize raise the General Sale Tax (GST) from 12.5 to 15% and withdraw its tax concessions on basic food items and medical supplies. Economists around the world have criticized the IMF, saying that their programs are counterproductive and retard social stability. Their structural adjustment program lead to an increase in poverty because it mandates 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 bondholders made several requests during the negotiating period. One was that Government include a provision that would see a share of revenues from future oil discoveries passed on to bondholders. Another was for bondholders to receive a bonus if GDP grows by a significant amount. They also requested that Government pay the expenses of their creditor committee which amounted to US$8 million. In the final deal, no provision for a share of oil revenue or GDP was included and Government agreed to pay only US$1.5 million for the creditor committee’s expenses. The rest will be covered by the bondholders themselves. Additionally, $76 million which had accrued in interest during the negotiation period will be attached to the principal of the bond and will not have to be paid up front by Government.  

Prime Minister Barrow hopes to launch the new bonds on Thursday or Friday, February 14th or 15th.  

-1 6 0 54 2/14/2013 06:00:00 64 Shane D. Williams 0/0/0000 00:00:00 0 0 0/0/0000 00:00:00 2/14/2013 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 0 376 robots= author= 5865 UDP Convention Time udp-convention-time-

AlbertoThe United Democratic Party will be holding its National Convention on Sunday, February 17th at the Andres Campos Civic Center in Corozal Town. The convention is the party's largest and most important decision making body and will once again be called upon to make important decisions for the way forward for the UDP.


During the convention, there will be guest speakers representing young persons actively involved within the party. There will be presentation of amendments to the UDP constitution as well as policy statements on Youth, Crime and Women. The keynote address will be presented by the UDP party leader, Hon. Dean Barrow.

This convention like others before is held at two-year intervals and also features the election of officers of the party. On this occasion, the positions for which there will be elections are for the post of First Deputy in which Hon. Gaspar Vega and Hon. Patrick Faber will be contesting. The position of Party Chairman will also be open for contest and contesting that position will be Alberto August and current Deputy Party Chairman Roosevelt Blades. The third and final position up for election is that of Deputy Party Chairman and Belize City Councilor Roger Espejo and Punta Gorda town Councilor Fern Gutierrez will be seeking that post.

The convention has taken on the combustion of a General Election and campaigning started months ago. But even so, parties contesting the positions continue to campaign in the hope of gaining support and votes on convention day.

A total of 567 votes are available at the convention with those eligible to vote being the members of the Central Executive Committee, Cabinet Members, UDP Members of the National Assembly, Constituency Caretakers, the party Chairman, Vice Chairman, Secretary of constituency committees and twelve constituency delegates, all party members who hold elected office at the municipal level, honorary members of the UDP, two delegates from the National Organization of Women and two delegates from the UDP Youth Arm.      

The convention promises to be filled with energy and excitement and no matter who wins, the positions being contested the party will emerge stronger and more united than ever. All candidates who have placed their names on the ballot have sure earned the respect to the party members and anyone elected will do right by the party.

-1 6 0 53 2/14/2013 06:00:00 62 0/0/0000 00:00:00 0 0 0/0/0000 00:00:00 2/14/2013 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 1381 robots= author= 5866 Teenager ran over ny PUP Joseph Mahumud's vehicle teenager-ran-over-ny-pup-joseph-mahumuds-vehicle

Vehicle“When I arrived at the scene he was under a silver pickup, underneath the tire and Berry and Mahmud was standing right there watching him.”


That was the lament of Augustina Molina, the aunt of 17-year-old Michael Valdez as she desperately looked on as a pickup truck was parked on top of her nephew. The front driver’s side wheel was on the young man’s back as he lay on a grassy area on the compound of the Log Cab Inn on the early morning hours of Sunday, February 10th.

Valdez explained that he was attending a wedding at the establishment where one of his cousins was getting married but decided to leave sometime around 1 a.m. since there was an altercation at the event. While he was on his way home, two men began to chase him in a gray Isuzu pickup truck. He said he ran into nearby bushes hoping to get away from the men; however, that did not happen. Valdez said he fell down and hit his head; he fainted and only awoke when he felt a vehicle on his back.

By this time, his aunt had arrived on the scene and she said she called out for her nephew and was in a state of shock when he replied to her from under the vehicle. She said she immediately asked the men to help her move the vehicle but they were unwilling to do so. She continued to explain that it was not until after she became confrontational with the men that they agreed. With the assistance of other people, who had arrived on the scene, they managed to drag Valdez from under the vehicle and rescued him.

Molina said that she can clearly identify two men at the scene; one of the men was former PUP Mayor Desmond Berry and the other PUP area representative for Cayo North, Joseph Mahmud. And she could not forget the men on the scene since she had a verbal confrontation with them to the point where she began to curse them because of what they were doing to her nephew. She stated that, “I start cursing the two of them in their faces.”

Valdez, who was under the vehicle, said that he asked his aunt to ensure that the men whom she met near the vehicle did not leave since it was they who had run the vehicle over him. Valdez himself could identify Berry as one of the persons involved and the other he identified as “a politician.” While he could identify the man as a politician, Valdez added that while under the vehicle, the men were interrogating him and asking him political questions. All the while he was pleading to be let go. He said, “I couldn’t take the pain from the car. I felt like I was going to burst open. I felt like I was going to die.”

Since the incident, the young man made a formal complaint against the two men; however, he withdrew the comment at the urging of some of his family members. The Guardian understands that one of those family members is Valdez’s father, who forms part of the Constituency committee of Joseph Mahmud and most recently ran as a town council candidate for the People’s United Party in the last elections. It is such a pity that the matter may never be taken to court to show the kind of injustices that the PUP are capable of. We surely do hope that the young man reconsiders his position and presses on with charges against those who did him wrong.

As for Mahmud, he sent out a release in which he says he was neither the driver or was not even inside the vehicle at the time. He, in fact, states that he was not even at the scene. Well, the young man’s aunt says otherwise.

-1 6 0 53 2/14/2013 06:00:00 62 0/0/0000 00:00:00 0 0 0/0/0000 00:00:00 2/14/2013 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 0 439 robots= author= 5867 From the Bizarre PUP World - Scorfulous - Morally Bankrupt from-the-bizarre-pup-world-scorfulous-morally-bankrupt

DoloresDolores Balderamos-Garcia stood up in the National Assembly to object to the Prime Minister's use of the word ‘scrofulous’ because she considered it insulting. Word of advice Dol, if you don't know the meaning of a word there is no reason to object to its use. All you needed to do is find yourself a dictionary and look up the meaning. But then again the translation of your name from the Spanish language to the English language would explain your behavior.

Said Musa got up on a point of order to clarify that the money he used to pay the Universal Health Services debt was in fact a grant (free money) and that it was not a loan. Well, all the worse for him! He actually admitted to using money that was a gift to the Belizean people to pay off a private debt. And there he was saying that he did not want to be a part of the debate because he had nothing to contribute. Admitting that you squandered the people's money is as good a contribution to the discussion on the Super Bond as we could have expected. Thanks for the honesty Said, for once the truth flows from your mouth, even it if was by mistake.

Mike, Mike, Mike, the full bred Espat. The Champion defender of the Super Bond; for once there is a PUP brave enough to get up and say the Super Bond was a good thing, even if it was a good thing only for the PUP. Maybe Mike should consult with Johnny to try and find the millions stolen from the people. A report has it that 250 million dollars from the Super Bond proceeds is unaccounted for. Is this the reason why Mike was so eager to stand up and defend it? Maybe he personally benefitted from it!

Ramiro Ramirez the man with the same first and last name, learn to read... understand what you are reading... practice public speaking... know what you are talking about... and we can go on and on!
Oh Mai! It’s Miller Time!! Everyone thought that after you were found with 15 cases of contraband beer you would simply try to keep a low profile and keep low when house meetings are called. You get up and once again that it was because of the PUP corruption that the people of this country continue to pay for it.

Marco Tulio, the good doctor keeps on maligning the Northern Regional Hospital with the hopes that people in the North visit his clinic. Well, we don't know about that cause... Ehemm... we just don't know.  You can't encourage people to come to your clinic if they don't want to or don't trust that they will be getting the best treatment there. We won't say any more on that one.

Francis Fonseca wanted to be consulted in the Super Bond negotiations. Well the pertinent question is, did he ever consult with the people of Belize when his Government was making those absurd loans at commercial rates. And how can anyone consult with the architects of a disaster when the time comes to rebuild?

-1 1 0 40 2/14/2013 06:00:00 62 0/0/0000 00:00:00 0 0 0/0/0000 00:00:00 2/14/2013 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 0 701 robots= author= 5868 Chan Pine Ridge elects UDP Candidates for Village Council Elections chan-pine-ridge-elects-udp-candidates-for-village-council-elections

ChanOn Monday, February 4th, 2013, members of the United Democratic Party gathered  at the residence of Mrs. Elvia Tzul in Chan Pine Ridge Village to elect the UDP team that will contest the upcoming Village Council Elections.


Elected was Isidro Tzul as the chairperson candidate and Eber Patt, Marcelino Chan, Cesar Gutierrez, George Torres, Efrin Tzul and Marie Cima as councilor candidates.

The UDP caretaker for the Orange Walk East constituency, Orlando “Landy” Burns, was present and assisted with the process.

The National Party Coordinator, Ruben Campos was present on behalf of the UDP Secretariat.

-1 1 0 40 2/14/2013 06:00:00 62 0/0/0000 00:00:00 0 0 0/0/0000 00:00:00 2/14/2013 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 0 530 robots= author= 5869 What about Mahmud Francis? what-about-mahmud-francis

VehicleThe People's United Party was quick to condemn the actions of Hon. Mark King for having been involved in an incident at the Princess Casino at the Northern Border. In fact, they went to great lengths claiming that the Prime Minister was not stern enough with King; if a 3-month suspension without pay and criminal charges being brought is not stern enough, given the circumstances, then we'd say we don't know what else could have been done. The shoe is now on the other foot and now one of the PUP area representatives is involved in an incident which really pales in comparison to the one Hon. King was involved in. Would you know, there is not a peep coming from the PUP, not even a word has been said and we'd hazard a guess that nothing will ever be said about it.


PUP Cayo North Area Representative, Joseph Mahmud, is being accused of having been involved in an incident where a 17-year-old was run over with a pickup truck that belongs to Mahmud.  The incident was so severe that the young man was pinned under the driver's side front wheel of the vehicle for quite a while before he was released at the intervention of his family members. It was as if they were trying to kill the young man. And Mahmud is alleged to have been at the site and the young man's family members say was complicit to the actions.

For an accusation to be made against an area representative that he was involved in the running over of a 17-year-old young man is simply unbelievable. If there were not pictures to prove that it indeed happen, that is. This was a deliberate act that could be perceived as attempted murder and now the PUP cannot take the moral high ground.

Mahmud has issued a statement claiming that he was not the driver, a passenger nor that he was even at the scene. This, however, is being contradicted by the young man, Michael Valdez and his aunt, Augustina Molina, who have categorically placed him on the scene and of having been involved in the incident.

 The PUP can take the moral high ground when it is to condemn others but when it is comes to one of their own involved in wrong-doing, they have nothing to say. They are quick to criticize and expect the sternest of punishments against people who are accused but are unable to do anything against their own. This is the kind of duplicity that the PUP represents. 

Most Belizeans are now expecting and, in fact, demanding that something be done about this; a young man almost lost his life and those responsible must be held accountable for what they did. 

-1 1 0 40 2/14/2013 06:00:00 62 0/0/0000 00:00:00 0 0 0/0/0000 00:00:00 2/14/2013 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 0 484 robots= author= 5870 Mahoganies for the City mahoganies-for-the-city

DavidBelize City Businessman, David Gegg, handed over 110 mahogany trees to Belize City Councilor with responsibility for beautification Roger Espejo, on Monday, February 11th. According to Gegg, the trees range in price from 5 to 50 dollars depending on their size. He added that he was impressed by the work the Belize City Council was doing in beautifying the city that he was compelled to assist. It is the second time that Gegg has made a contribution. Earlier on in the beautification project of Belize City, he donated 100 mahogany trees which have also been planted across the city. He chose to make the donation because he says the Mahogany tree is very important to our history.

Councilor Espejo explained that similar to the past contribution by Gegg, these trees will also be planted across the city. He commended the gesture and said that this is the kind of partnerships with the private sector that the Council seeks to make in order to make Belize city a better place. In planting the trees, they will be done in areas designated as tourism routes and will be an added feature for tours in Belize City.

Gegg says he grows mahogany trees at a far he has in Sandhill. He adds that over the years he has donated thousands of trees to various organizations, among them the Forestry Department. He also noted that he has been planting trees himself in the Peccary Hills area to embellish it with logwood features. Unfortunately, he added, a fire a few years ago burnt most of the trees and he is once again embarking to replant the area with mahogany trees.

The trees planted in Belize City will be cared for by the Belize City Council. Residents will also be asked to assist in keeping them alive.

-1 1 0 40 2/14/2013 06:00:00 62 0/0/0000 00:00:00 0 0 0/0/0000 00:00:00 2/14/2013 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 0 424 robots= author= 5871 Our Middle Name our-middle-name

Approximately half a decade after the UDP swept the 2008 General Elections the work continues, the reversal of the PUP’s mismanagement and corruption tide progresses and as PM Dean Barrow once put it in a budget speech, “our finest hour is yet to come”. Indeed, looking at it carefully, one’s finest hour should always be ‘yet to come’ for it is in the relentless pursuit of improvement that we deliver greatness. One reason for UDP’s greatness continues to be Democracy. After all, it is‘our middle name’.


Grappling with the woes that were sown by the PUPs unforgettable and unforgiveable mis-management during 1998-2008, this party continues to fight the tide and continues to make steadfast progress. These achievements haven’t come easy especially to the people of this country who, in some way shape or form, have had to bear the cost of rebuilding. What we must be reminded of from time to time is that this all comes from a Government that stands firm in unity and by a party that leads by example in demonstrating the ability to remain democratic.

Unlike the present opposition, which audaciously, but not surprisingly, decided to pass a resolution for none of its present area representatives and/or caretakers to be challenged in an intra-party convention, the UDP remains committed to true democracy by allowing the people to decide who it wants even when its comes to the leadership positions of the party.  This democracy is the hallmark of the UDP. This is the UDP’s way of leading by example and a fine example it is for other parties to follow.  In the same way that the people of this country bear the cost of rebuilding and shall always deserve to vote. So does the membership of the UDP bear the cost of building its party and so does that membership deserve a voice. It is the membership that serves as the infantry during campaign seasons. It is is the membership that ‘holds the fort’ on election day. It is the membership that protects this country by keeping the endemic corruption of the PUP at bay.

So it is that this Sunday February 17 the UDP family celebrates the party’s achievements and decides on its leadership positions. Why? Because we are a party that believes in democracy; Why? Because we are a party that protects and preserves the right to stand up and to vote; Why? Because we all deserve that inalienable right and because we all have the ability to vote our conscience for what is good now and for who or what will make us greater tomorrow.

Why? Because ‘democratic’ is our middle name.

-1 1 0 40 2/14/2013 06:00:00 62 0/0/0000 00:00:00 0 0 0/0/0000 00:00:00 2/14/2013 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 0 446 robots= author= 5872 New Computers for Ministry of Health new-computers-for-ministry-of-health

MOHOn Thursday, February 15th, the Ministry of Health and Fultec Systems signed a contract for the supply of $59,000 worth of Computer Equipment under the Grant for Salud Mesoamerica Project. The Salud Mesoamerica Project aims to close the gap in health equity for the poorest twenty percent of the population in Mesoamerica. This will be achieved through an expansion in the coverage and utilization of reproductive, maternal, neonatal and child basic health (RMNCH) services; including, nutrition, immunization, reproductive health and maternal and neonatal health for women of reproductive age and children under the age of five years.


The supply includes routers, switches, servers, server racks, printers and twelve desktop computers. The equipment will be used at health facilities in the Northern and Western Regions of Belize to improve the access, usage and quality of Maternal, Infant, Child and Reproductive Health in the full utilization and networking of the Belize Health Information System. Chief Executive Officer in the Ministry of Health, Dr. Peter Allen, signed on behalf of the Ministry and Human Resource Manager, Grace Brown, signed on behalf of Fultec Systems.

The Salud Mesoamerica Project has been made possible through grant funding from the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation, Carlos Slim Foundation and Spain. The Project compliments the World Bank Project in the south and is a part of the Ministry of Health’s efforts to achieve the Millennium Development Goal targets for healthy maternal and infant care.

-1 1 0 40 2/14/2013 06:00:00 62 0/0/0000 00:00:00 0 0 0/0/0000 00:00:00 2/14/2013 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 0 399 robots= author= 5873 Parenting: The Cornerstone of Development parenting-the-cornerstone-of-development

ParticipantsThe Ministry of Human Development, Social Transformation and Poverty Alleviation is collaborating with the United Nation’s Children Fund (UNICEF) to host a three-day parenting workshop at the Best Western Biltmore Hotel. The workshop is entitled “Parenting: The Cornerstone of Development”.


Hon. Anthony “Boots” Martinez, Minister Human Development, Social Transformation and Poverty Alleviation, was the keynote speaker at the opening of the workshop. He said that many of society’s problems can be solved if we pay more attention to our home. Minister Martinez said, “Parenting in Belize has changed.” He continued, “while most people believe that their role as a parent is more important than their job, there are far more training for jobs than there is for parenting.” He said there needs to be an emphasis on parental training in order for true social development to exist because “studies have shown that the environment an individual is raised in affects their long term intellectual, social, emotional and physical development”.

The workshop began on Wednesday, February 13th, and will conclude on Friday, February 15th. Over 100 participants from Government departments, civil society and the private sector are attending. The goal at the end of the workshop is to develop a national plan of action to improve parenting across the country; specifically in the areas of health, nutrition and social-emotional development. Urban and rural families disadvantaged by conditions of poverty, low employment and low educational achievement will be of top priority in the national parenting agenda.

International research in developed and developing countries have provided incontrovertible evidence that effective parenting has long-lasting positive effects on children’s all-round development, on their performance in school, on their relationship with others, and on their productivity well into adult life.

-1 1 0 40 2/14/2013 06:00:00 62 0/0/0000 00:00:00 0 0 0/0/0000 00:00:00 2/14/2013 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 0 418 robots= author= 5874 Restore Belize Improving Literacy and Numeracy in Belize -restore-belize-improving-literacy-and-numeracy-in-belize

Participants On Wednesday, February 13th, twenty-five individuals from various organizations completed a three-day training session on a computer-based literacy and numeracy software. The training is Restore Belize’s response to the Literacy Assessment (2011) conducted by the Ministry of Education which revealed that many children in primary schools are struggling to attain the basic literacy skills appropriate for their age.


In December 2012, the Republic of China (Taiwan) donated 100 computers as well as a National Master License and four site licenses for a computer-based literacy and numeracy software in Belize. The softwares are the Academy of Reading and the Academy of Math. These are online intervention programs that are designed to assess an individual’s reading skill level and construct a program to develop the user’s understanding and abilities. Literacy Without Borders’ Executive Director, Randy Boissonnault said that a user should improve a full grade level by using the program 30 minutes a day, three days a week for ten weeks. Students who choose to spend more time on the system will advance more quickly.

The Republic of China (Taiwan) has purchased the rights to use the program permanently at four locations in Belize. As a bonus, there will be 8 sites that can offer the program for up to one year. The participants of the training session may apply to introduce the program at their organization. They will be expected to sign a Memorandum of Understanding with Restore Belize and, if needed, computers will be provided. Organizations represented at the training session include Eglah's Training Center for Women and Families, Kolbe Foundation, Ministry of Education, Youth and Sports, Port Loyola Library, RESTORE Belize, UBAD Educational Foundation, Water Walkers, Yabra Community Policing Centre, YMCA and Youth Hostel. These organizations are expected to introduce the program to the community by March of this year.

The donation by the Republic of China (Taiwan) is valued at BZ$318,936.

-1 1 0 40 2/14/2013 06:00:00 62 0/0/0000 00:00:00 0 0 0/0/0000 00:00:00 2/14/2013 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 0 631 robots= author= 5875 San Narciso UDP Village Council Candidates ready for Elections -san-narciso-udp-village-council-candidates-ready-for-elections

SanSupporters of the United Democratic Party held a divisional meeting in San Narciso Village in the Corozal Southwest constituency where a slate was selected to contest the upcoming Village Council elections. The meeting, which was held on the night of Sunday, February 10th, was attended by party supporters who selected 7 people to represent the UDP in the village council elections. Elected as the candidate for Chairperson was Emair Correa. Councilor  Candidates selected were Laura Patt, Romel Ek, Adair Dominguez, Jesser Patt, Veronica Ortega and Leovijilda Patt Cob.


During the meeting, the supporters pledged their continued support  for the UDP Party and indicated their full support to the UDP seven. Present at the meeting were the Divisional Chairman, Oder Bautista and the Divisional Secretary, Mr. Alfredo Ek. Representing the UDP Secretariat was The National Party Coordinator, Ruben Campos

-1 1 0 40 2/14/2013 06:00:00 62 0/0/0000 00:00:00 0 0 0/0/0000 00:00:00 2/14/2013 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= 5876 Dates for Agric Show announced dates-for-agric-show-announced

AgricThe National Agriculture and Trade Show Committee has announced that the planning an preparations has commenced for this year's show. It announced that the show will take place from May 3rd to the 5th.

Also announced was the Ministry of Agriculture's commitment to make this year's show focus more on agriculture and agro-industry. There will also be zoning taking place at the grounds to have better control of the number and distribution of bars.

-1 1 0 59 2/14/2013 06:00:00 62 0/0/0000 00:00:00 0 0 0/0/0000 00:00:00 2/14/2013 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 0 739 robots= author= 5877 Remembering Celia - Celia Adeline Albertina McDougall (March 17th, 1955 – February 16th, 2003) remembering-celia-celia-adeline-albertina-mcdougall-march-17th-1955--february-16th-2003

CeliaHenry Ward Beecher wrote these immortal and apt words: “No grief has a right to immortality. That ground belongs to joy, to hope, (and) to faith.” I would openly and candidly admit that these words have guided my family throughout these years after Mother passed.


The cliché ‘time certainly flies’ does sum up perhaps the sense of disbelief that all of ten years have passed since our mother, sister, aunt and friend Celia Adeline Albertina McDougall departed this life for eternal rest.

I was 19 years old at the time and my siblings were significantly younger. My sister Kayla just turned 14 and my brothers, Sandro and Kishane, were 12 and 9 respectively. Our older brother, Patrick was a fairly young man himself being all of 30.

Indeed, our lives were never the same ever since. Although we lost the matriarch of our humble household, we learned as siblings to hold steadfast and try our best to remain faithful in the knowledge that life would have become better. It certainly hasn’t been without challenges for all of us, but with the sense of kindness, patience, goodness, self-control and love Mother instilled in all of us, our spirit continues to press on, knowing that there is hope that we’ll see her again.

I use this time to reflect not just how difficult it was for our family to lose her so young, but to remember the kind of person she was and use it as one of the beacons of personal hope that’s left in this cruel and at times, unjust world.

Her compassion for the young, the old and in between makes me believe that there are still good people left. I vaguely remember her time as a social worker in the early 1980s, but what I do remember is that she tried her best to really help people. Speaking from personal recollection, helping people was one of the things she loved most. Even after she left the Social Services Department in 1984, that zeal to serve never waned.  She helped out with a number of elderly people in our small community and assisted with the running of the canteen while my younger siblings attended Calvary Temple School. We didn’t have a lot to give in terms of monetary donations, but she found it important to give her time.

As my family and I reflect on the woman that she was, her empathy, her firm belief in Jehovah God, the evenhandedness she used to raise us, her infectious laughter, her amazing wit, her dry sarcastic humor, her passion and drive to stand up firmly for what she believed in, and most of all, respect for and the dignity we give to human life have and continues to have a profound impact on the way in which we have lived our lives since.  I think of her as the very unassuming woman who wore black orchid lipstick; I think of her as someone who was way ahead of her generation in terms of her thinking and as a person whose only wish was to make the world a better place. These, and the memories my family and I created with her while she was alive we cling unto so that her spirit remains alive and well forevermore.

-1 1 0 59 2/14/2013 06:00:00 64 Dale MCDougal 0/0/0000 00:00:00 0 0 0/0/0000 00:00:00 2/14/2013 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 0 550 robots= author= 5878 Used a Baby to try to smuggle Weed Seeds into Prison used-a-baby-to-try-to-smuggle-weed-seeds-into-prison

MariaSanta Margaret Villager, Maria Alicia Reyes, 20, appeared in Magistrate’s Court on Monday, February 11th after she allegedly tried to smuggle weed seeds into the Belize Central Prison.

She appeared in Magistrate’s Court where she was charged with possession of a controlled drug. She pleaded not guilty to the charge before Magistrate Hettie Mae Stuart where there was no objection to bail and she was granted it in the sum of $800. She is to put $300 up front and the balance of $500 as a signed surety. She is not to interfere with the prosecution’s witnesses. Reyes is to reappear in court on March 15th, 2013.

On Saturday, February 9th at about 11:20 a.m. prison officer Tanisa Dawson conducted a search on Reyes and found nothing incriminating. She then proceeded to search Reyes’ 1-year-old baby. The search led to the discovery of a transparent plastic bag in the back pocket of the child. Further inspection revealed that the plastic bag contained suspected cannabis seeds. Hattieville Police were called and the mother and child were taken into custody where the mother was charged.

-1 1 0 39 2/14/2013 06:00:00 63 0/0/0000 00:00:00 0 0 0/0/0000 00:00:00 2/14/2013 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 0 451 robots= author= 5879 Fisherman caught with Weed fisherman-caught-with-weed

On February 11th, 34-year-old fisherman, Ramon Avila, appeared in Magistrate's court before Chief Magistrate Anne Marie Smith where he pleaded guilty to drug trafficking charges. Since he has no previous convition, he was fined 10 thousand dollars plus 5 dollars cost of court. He was ordered to pay 2 thousand dollars forthwith or in default 6 months imprisonment. The balance is to be paid by April 30th, 2013.
Police say that at on Monday, February 11th, 2013, Avila was seen riding a bicycle contrary to the flow traffic on Victoria Street and when he was stopped, a search was conducted on him which led to the discovery of a bag of weed weighing 119 grams. It was inside a bag he had in his possession at the time.

-1 1 0 39 2/14/2013 06:00:00 62 0/0/0000 00:00:00 0 0 0/0/0000 00:00:00 2/14/2013 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 0 376 robots= author= 5880 Four charged for Burglary four-charged-for-burglary

LLoydOn Monday, Febraury 11th, four people, including a minor, 16-years, were arraigned in the Belize City Magistrate’s Court on charges of burglary and handling stolen goods.

Lloyd Parchue, 2Cilo Cherrington, a resident of Nutmeg Street in the Saint Martin’s de Porres area, 22-year-old Kareem Yorke, a resident of Berry Street in Belize City and with a 16-year -old high School Student appeared before Senior Magistrate, Sharon Frazer where they were jointly charged with burglary and handling stolen goods.

Cherrington was additionally charged with an additional count of handing stolen goods after he was found with a gold chain and $1,800 in US currency, proceeds from a burglary in which over $37,590.00 in items was stolen from Phillip Garbutt’s home on February 5th, 2013.

Bail was offered only to the 16-year-old minor after his attorney, Lionel Welch, submitted in court that his client has had no run-ins with the law until this unfortunate allegation was made against him. He also pointed out that the minor is a student with no record before the court.

The Senior Magistrate agreed with the attorney and noted that she did not want the high school student to be exposed to the Belize Central Prison at this time.

She offered him bail of $10,000 plus two sureties of $5,000 each. She ordered him to be indoors, on curfew between the hours of 7:00 p.m. and 6:00 a.m., and that he is not to be seen on the street during this time unless he is with a parent.

The case for all was adjourned until April 3rd, 2013.

-1 1 0 39 2/14/2013 06:00:00 62 0/0/0000 00:00:00 0 0 0/0/0000 00:00:00 2/14/2013 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 98 robots= author= 5881 Guilty of stealing a Ball of Dutch Cheese guilty-of-stealing-a-ball-of-dutch-cheese

DeliaDelia Young, 46, appeared in Magistrate’s Court in Belize City before Magistrate Dale Cayetano where she was read a single charge of theft for stealing a ball of Dutch cheese valued at $54.50.

Young, who was unrepresented, wasted no time and pleaded guilty to the offense. Young, however, asked the court for leniency since she is the mother of two children. She is a first time offender for the crime of theft and as a result, Magistrate Cayetano fined her $300 plus $5.00 cost of court. She was then ordered to pay the fine by the end of April or in default she will spend 3 months in jail.

On Friday, February 8th, at about 5:45 p.m., Supervisor at James Brodie and Company, Dion Brooks reported to police that he saw Young when she placed the roll of Dutch Cheese inside her sling bag, which was on her shoulder. She then attempted to make off with it but was caught and handed over to police.

-1 1 0 39 2/14/2013 06:00:00 62 0/0/0000 00:00:00 0 0 0/0/0000 00:00:00 2/14/2013 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 83 robots= author= 5882 Cop on Trial for Perjury cop-on-trial-for-perjury

AnthonyIt’s been more than 6 years ago since a police officer was accused of perjuring himself whilst on the stand in a case of murder involving a well-known businessman Chayben Bou-Nahra. The case got started in Supreme Court Before Justice Troadio Gonzalez on Wednesday, February 13th, 2013.

A jury of 9 persons has been empanelled to hear evidence against police officer, 46-year-old Anthony Polonio. At the time of being charged, he was stationed with the Crimes Investigation Branch office in Belize City. He was one of several officers who had responded to the scene of a murder in which Shawn Copius had been shot and killed.

Allegations being made against PC Polonio are that on October 24th, 2007, whilst giving testimony under oath in the case of the Queen versus Chayben Bou-Nahra, he intended to obstruct the course of justice; he testified that he would be able to identify Bou-Nahra knowing that he could not.

Prosecutor in the case is newly appointed crown counsel, Leroy Banner while PC Polonio is being represented by Senior Crown Counsel, Simeon Sampson.

Banner’s first witness to the case is attorney Tracey Sosa. Sosa at the time was the then crown counsel for the DPP’s office who had prosecuted the case in which PC Polonio had testified in. While Sosa was giving her testimony, Sampson objected since he did not have material which was being discussed. The objection was upheld until the material could be made available.

The matter was adjourned until Thursday, February 19th, 2013 at 9:00 a.m.

-1 1 0 39 2/14/2013 23:08:06 64 0/0/0000 00:00:00 0 0 0/0/0000 00:00:00 2/14/2013 23:08:06 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 0 450 robots= author= 5883 Charged for Public Terror at SCA Fair charged-for-public-terror-at-sca-fair

Two men and two minors were taken to Magistrate’s court on Monday, Febraury 11th and charged in connection with a fight that occurred at the Saint Catherine’s Academy (SCA) annual Valentine’s fair.
Two minors, ages 15 and 17 along with 18-year-old Trevor Brown, of #69 Amara Avenue, and 21-year-old Gilbert Wade, of Ross Pen Road in Belize City appeared before Magistrate Hettie Mae Stewart where they were jointly charge with one count each of disorderly conduct and one count each of causing public terror.

On Saturday, February 9th, 2013, at about 11:10 p.m., the four caused public terror at the SCA Compound on Hudson Street, when they wantonly engaged in an unlawful fight with the intent to cause terror to the public.

The four all pleaded not guilty to the two offenses they were jointly charged with.

In court, the two minors, ages were read the charges in the presence of relatives. The 15-year-old’s mother was present while the 17-year-old’s sister was present.

Wade alone was additionally charged with one count of possession of an article with a blade.

He was found in possession of a knife, 4 inches in length. He also pleaded not guilty to this charge.

As a result of the fight the 17-year-old minor sustained a cut wound to the left side of his face under his eye another injury close to his nose and he also had a bandage to the upper part of his hand and his thumb, and index finger.

A police report says that the 15-year-old was seen with two stab wounds to the left arm while Blades was seen with stab wounds to the left side of face. Meanwhile, Trevor Brown was seen with two stab wounds to the left upper back.

Brown and both minors have been released from the KHMH Hospital and Wade is reported to be the only one who escaped any injuries.

Police say that at this time the four men including Wade, who was found with a blade, refused to cooperate with the police with any statement into the fight that led to the stabbing.

The four were all offered bail by Magistrate Hettie Mae Stuart in the sum of $1,000 each plus one surety of the same amount.

The two minors were handed into the custody of their guardians with conditions to their bails.

Magistrate Stuart placed the teenagers on a curfew ordering them to be in their homes between the hours of 7:00 p.m., and 6:00 a.m. They were also warned not to interfere with the witnesses in the case. If they breach the conditions of their bail, they will be remanded to the Belize Youth Hostel. All four persons are due back in Court on April 19th, 2013.

-1 1 0 39 2/14/2013 06:00:00 62 0/0/0000 00:00:00 0 0 0/0/0000 00:00:00 2/14/2013 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= 5884 Woman found Guilty Arson woman-found-guilty-arson-

KeishaA Belize City woman, who was found guilty of arson 3 weeks ago, learned her fate today in the Belize Supreme Court before Justice Troadio Gonzalez. She was sentenced to 6 years imprisonment.

24-year-old Keisha Banner was found guilty on January 22nd, 2013 of burning down her former lover’s home located at #69 Vernon Street in Belize City. The incident occurred on January 30th, 2011.

During her trial, Banner was unrepresented and had to defend herself against a single charge of arson and was found guilty. In mitigation, she appeared along with attorney Simeon Sampson. He called two character witnesses including Constancio Perez, a retired teacher and priest with the Anglican Church. According to Perez, who is also her godfather, he said that Banner, whom he has seen grown from a baby, grew up with her father until age 4 when he died in a traffic accident in 1993. He said that the charge of arson against Banner shocked him since he has always known her to be a very loving person, who grew up in a family setting despite the death of her father. Before leaving the stand, Perez asked the court for leniency upon Banner as he does not know her as a trouble maker.

Her second character witness was Elroy Wade, 35, a salesperson and ggent for a gas company in the south of the country. Wade told the court that Banner was once her neighbor in Hope Creek village. He said that due to an unfortunate series of events in her life, Banner was forced to leave the village when her home was taken away from her some 3 years ago. He said Banner was liked by his family as she was once a babysitter for his 12-year-old daughter and she quickly became close to their family.

Her attorney, Simeon Sampson asked the court to take into consideration the fact that she was a dropout from high school only being able to finish up to third form at Delille Academy.

After hearing the mitigation pleas, Justice Gonzalez sentenced her to 6 years in prison. 

In the trial, one of Banner’s neighbors testified that on January 30th, 2011 Banner came to her home and asked for a box of matches which she gave to banner. Minuets later she heard a bang and saw smoke coming from the home of Dishon Rowland who was Banner’s boyfriend at the time. The home was destroyed but Rowland was unharmed. The act was triggered by a card game that went sour leading the couple to get into an argument.

During her trial, Banner claimed that she was being abused by Rowland but that at no time she lit his house on fire and caused any damages.

But on Janaury 22nd, 2013, a jury of 8 women and one man, who had deliberated for less than 3 hours, found her guilty of the crime of arson.

-1 1 0 39 2/14/2013 06:00:00 62 0/0/0000 00:00:00 0 0 0/0/0000 00:00:00 2/14/2013 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 83 robots= author= 5885 Belmopan Bandits open Defence of Title on the Right Foot belmopan-bandits-open-defence-of-title-on-the-right-foot

PLBThe first week of the 2013 Premier League of Belize Closing Season is now in the history books. There were 4 games played over the last weekend across the country and all 8 teams in the competition were involved.

On Saturday, February 9th, at the Isidoro Beaton Stadium in Belmopan, the defending champions and home team the Belmopan Bandits opened defence of its national title on the right foot when it blasted Verdes by the score of 4-0. The Belmopan Bandits got on the scoreboard when Jerome James scored the 1st goal of the game in the 1st minute of play to give his team an early lead. That lead was further extended when David Madrid scored his team’s 2nd goal of the game in the 19th minute of play to give his team a 2-0 lead. However, the scoring did not stop there as Brandon Peyrefitte scored his team’s 3rd goal of the game in the 33rd minute of play for a 3-0 lead.

The first half of the game ended with the defending champions the Belmopan Bandits enjoying a comfortable 3-0 lead at the half. The only goal that was scored in the 2nd half of the game came in the 69th minute of play by Jerome James.

The competition continued on Sunday, February 10th, 2013, with 3 more games on the schedule. Out at the Norman Broaster Stadium in San Ignacio Town, the Belize Defence Force edged the San Ignacio United by the score of 3-2. The Belize Defence Force got on the scoreboard first when Paul Nuñez scored the first of his two goals in the 9th minute of play to give his team an early lead.  The Belize Defence Force lead was further extended when Paul Nuñez scored his 2nd goal of the game in the 32nd minute of play for a 2-0 lead.

The visiting San Ignacio United FC finally got on the scoreboard when Leonard Valdez scored his team’s 1st goal of the game in the 41st minute of play to cut the deficit to 1 goal. At the end of the second half of the game, it was a 2-1 ball game in favour of the Belize Defence Force.

In the second half of the game, the Belize Defence Force continued its onslaught of the San Ignacio United defence and was able to penetrate the goal area when Harrison Tasher scored his team’s 3rd and final goal of the game in the 80th minute of play. However, in the closing minutes of the game, Felix Miranda was able to score the San Ignacio United 2nd and final goal of the game to cut the deficit once again. Unfortunately for the San Ignacio United FC, the goals scored were too little, too late and as a result it had to settle for the 3-2 heartbreak defeat.

In the game played out at the Placencia Football Field in Placencia Village, the national sub-champions the Police United FC defeated the Placencia Assassins by the score of 3-1. The visiting Police United was able to get on the scoreboard first when Jermy Bermudez scored his team’s first goal of the game in the 21st minute of play that give his team an early lead. The home team Placencia Assassins were then able to get onto the scoreboard when Ernie Whyte scored his team’s equalising goal in the 33rd minute of play to tie the score at 1-1.

In the second half of the game, the Police United was able to tally two more goals. The 2nd goal of the game for the Police United was scored by Evan Mariano in the 66th minute of play, while the 3rd and final goal was scored by Lennox Castillo in the 90th minute of play.

In the final game of the day that was played out at the MCC Grounds in Belize City, the visiting San Felipe Barcelona blanked the home team FC Belize by the score of 2-0. The goals for the visiting FC San Felipe Barcelona were scored by Clifton West in the 46th minute of play and Deris Benavides in the 77th minute of play.

-1 1 0 41 2/14/2013 06:00:00 62 2/14/2013 23:16:26 64 0 0/0/0000 00:00:00 2/14/2013 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 6 0 200 robots= author= 5886 Wesley College girls and St. John’s College boys are Central Region Football Champions wesley-college-girls-and-st-johns-college-boys-are-central-region-football-champions

WesleyThe 2012-2013 Central Region Secondary Schools Football Competition came to an end on Monday, February 11th, 2013, at the MCC Grounds.

In the female championship game, Wesley College defeated St. Catherine Academy by the score of 3-0. The goals for Wesley College were Erica Milligan, Elisha Bernardez and Shanice Neal.

In the male championship game, St. John’s College defeated Anglican Cathedral College by the score of 3-2 in penalty shoot out. Dimitri Fabro, Sydney Bradley and Jorge Perez all scored penalties for St. John’s College, while Sergio Luna and Devaun Zuniga scored for Anglican Cathedral College.

On Friday, February 8th, in the first game of the female championship, Wesley College and St. Catherine Academy played to a 0-0 draw.

In the first game of the male championship game, St. John’s College and Anglican Cathedral College also played to a 1-1 draw. The goal for St. John’s College was scored by Dimitri Fabro while the goal for Anglican Cathedral College was scored by Dejaun Thompson.

Wesley College female and St. John’s College will represent the Central Region at the National Secondary Schools Football Championship this coming weekend at the People’s Stadium in Orange Walk Town.

-1 1 0 41 2/14/2013 06:00:00 62 2/14/2013 23:23:05 64 0 0/0/0000 00:00:00 2/14/2013 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 68 robots= author= 5887 Election for Cycling Association will be held shortly election-for-cycling-association-will-be-held-shortly

Hon.Minister of State in the Ministry of Sports, Hon. Herman Longsworth held a press conference on Wednesday, February 13th in which he announced that elections will be held by the 28th of February for a new executive of the Belize Cycling Association. The elections, says Hon. Longsworth, will be held under the Belize Cycling Association's constitution which was submitted to the National Sports Council on January 30th, 2012. It will be headed under the guidance of an interim executive which will be composed of two members of the National Sports Council, two Members representing Emil Moreno, who says he is the president of the Cycling Federation (the National Sports Council does not recognize this as a legitimate cycling body) and two members representing Dion Leslie who wants to run as president of the Cycling Association. The Interim Committee will be chaired by a well known former president of the Association.

The first order of business, stated the Minister, was to call on persons affiliated with the sport of cycling to register as part of the general membership of the association. This is the pool of persons who will be allowed to vote for a new executive who will carry the sport of cycling forward.

The move, says Longsworth,will more than likely attract sanctions from the International Cycling Union but this is something he says the sport will have to go through for a properly organized cycling discipline to be established.

-1 1 0 41 2/14/2013 06:00:00 62 0/0/0000 00:00:00 0 0 0/0/0000 00:00:00 2/14/2013 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 88 robots= author= 5888 Nazarene High School leads in girl's softball nazarene-high-school-leads-in-girls-softball

The Central Region Secondary Schools Softball Competition continues at the Rogers Stadium with a number of games played over the last few days.

On Tuesday, February 12th, in the first of two girls games, Ladyville Technical High School  defeated Anglican Cathedral College by the score of 19-2. The winning pitcher was Amber Wade and the losing pitcher was Chelsea Jex.

In the second girls game, it was Wesley College winning over Maud Williams High School  by the score of 17-4. The winning pitcher was Breanna Meighan and the losing pitcher was K. Robinson.

On Monday, February 11th, Nazarene High School continued on its winning path when it defeated Edward P. Yorke High School by the score of 14-2. The winning pitcher was Ashley Lucas the losing pitcher was Miekah Muhammad Ali.

On Saturday, February 9th there were 4 games on the schedule. In the first of two female games, Wesley College upended St. Catherine Academy by the score of 22-1. The winning pitcher was Briana Ara and the losing pitcher was Jacqueline Alas. In the second game, it was Ladyville Technical High School won over Maud Williams High School by the score of 16-1. The winning pitcher was Amber Wade and the losing pitcher was Ashley Bailey.

In the first male game, St. John’s College won over Maud Williams High School via the default route. In game two it was Anglican Cathedral College winning over Nazarene High School by the score of 12-10. The winning pitcher was Devaun Zuniga and the losing pitcher was Jerome Carr.

On Friday, February 8th, in the first female game, Edward P. Yorke High School won over Wesley College by the score of 19-1. The winning pitcher was Mickala Muhammad Ali and the losing pitcher was Briana Ara. In the second game, Nazarene High School defeated Ladyville Technical High School by the score of 7-2. The winning pitcher was Ashley Lucas and the losing pitcher was Amber Wade.

The competition continued on Thursday, February 6th, with one game in the male competition in which Nazarene High School defeated Wesley College by the score of 35-4. The winning pitcher was Jerome Carr and the losing pitcher was Andre Shaw.

The competition will continue on Thursday, February 14th, 2013, with four games on the schedule. In the first game in the female competition which is scheduled to commence at 1:00 pm, Anglican Cathedral College will go up against Nazarene High School; in game two also in female it will be Pallotti High School against Edward P. Yorke High School. In the boys‘ competition,  it will be Anglican Cathedral College against Wesley College and in the fourth and final game of the day, it will be Maud Williams High School against Nazarene High School.

-1 1 0 41 2/14/2013 06:00:00 62 0/0/0000 00:00:00 0 0 0/0/0000 00:00:00 2/14/2013 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= 5889 Belize City Primary Schools Softball Nearing End belize-city-primary-schools-softball-nearing-end

ButtonwoodThe 2012-2013 Belize City Primary Schools Softball Competition is fast approaching its conclusion.

On Wednesday, February 13th, in the second semi-final game played in the girls’ competition, Salvation Army School eliminated Muslim Community School by the score of 8-3 to advance to the championship game. The winning pitcher was Shakeira St. Claire and the losing pitcher was Essenie Ciego.

In the boys’ second semi-final game played, St. Mary’s School eliminated St. Martin De Porres School by the score of 15-9 to advance to the championship game. The winning pitcher was Gilbert Cal and the losing pitcher was Derrick Menzies.

On Monday, February 11th, in the first girls’ in the semi-final series, St. John Vianney eliminated Buttonwood Bay Nazarene by the score of 13-2. The winning pitcher was Princella Samuels and the losing pitcher was Kiara Magandi.

In the first boys’ semi-final game, Holy Redeemer School Eliminated Button Wood Bay Nazarene by the score of 15-9. The winning pitcher was D’Andre Arana and the losing pitcher was Bryan Molina.

The championship games will be played on Friday, February 15th, 2013, commencing at 1:00 pm. In the girls championship game, it will be St. John Vianney against Salvation Army; in the boys’ championship game, it will be Holy Redeemer School against St. Mary’s Anglican School.

-1 1 0 41 0/0/0000 00:00:00 62 0/0/0000 00:00:00 0 0 0/0/0000 00:00:00 2/14/2013 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 62 robots= author= 5890 Belize Bank leads in Interoffice Softball Competition belize-bank-leads-in-interoffice-softball-competition

The 2012 Belize City Interoffice Softball Competition commenced on Friday, February 8th, 2013, at Rogers Stadium with two games. In the first game on the schedule, Baby Ruth Baaba Shap defeated Tuff “E” Nuff by the score of 13-4. Baby Ruth Baaba Shap scored 13 runs on 13 hits. The Baby Ruth Baaba Shap offence was keyed by shortstop Brian Grnat’s 2-run homer. The winning pitcher was Jumoke Castro and the losing pitcher was Rico Black.

In the second game of the evening, Belize Bank defeated BWSL by the score of 20-13. The Belize Bank scored 20 runs on 14 hits, while BWSL scored 13 runs on 4 hits. The winning pitcher was Evan Lamb and the losing pitcher was Kareem Thompson.

The competition then continued on Saturday, February 9th, 2013, with three games on the schedule. In the first game of the day, KHMH defeated Kit Kat Baaba Shap by the score of 9-2. KHMH scored 9 runs on 3 hits while Kit Kat Baaba Shap scored 2 runs on 6 hits. The winning pitcher was Maria Smith and the losing pitcher was Leonora Morales.

In game two, Guardian/Sports Council defeated the defending champions Telemedia by the score of 13-11. Guardian/Sports Council scored 13 runs on 13 hits. The Guardian/Sports Council’s offence was keyed by third baseman Brian “Yellowman” Audinett, who drilled an Emily Turner pitch over the left field fence for a 3-run homer in the bottom of the 4th inning. Meanwhile, Telemedia scored 11 runs on 7 hits. The winning pitcher was Joel Wade and the losing pitcher was Emily Turner.

In the final game of the day, Belize Bank defeated Baby Ruth Baaba Shap by the score of 12-6. Belize Bank scored 12 runs on 12 hits, while Baby Ruth Baaba Shap scored 6 runs on 6 hits. The winning pitcher was Evan Lamb and the losing pitcher was Jumoke Castro.

On Sunday, February 10th, in the only game played, Tuff “E” Nuff defeated KHMH by the score of 15-3.  Tuff “E” Nuff scored 15 runs on 18 hits, while KHMH scored 3 runs on 4 hits. The winning pitcher was Karlene Lewis and the losing pitcher was Efrain Dominguez.

The competition will continue this coming Friday at the Rogers Stadium with two more games. In the first game scheduled for 7:00 pm, KHMH will go up against Guardian/Sports Council and in game two it will be Telemedia against Tuff “E” Nuff.

-1 1 0 41 2/14/2013 06:00:00 62 0/0/0000 00:00:00 0 0 0/0/0000 00:00:00 2/14/2013 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 91 robots= author= 5891 A Short Take a-short-take

Balderamos-Garcia is quickly securing the status of being dubbed the schoolmarm of the House of Representatives. Whenever the parley in the meetings gets zesty, she gets up and attempts to reprimand the representatives via a point of order, a move which dampens the entire mood of the visitors in the House. It is as if she considers herself the most senior member of the House, and, by virtue of this deluded perception, feels that she can address other members, including the Prime Minister, in a most condescending manner.

For example, during this past Tuesday’s meeting of the House, she totally threw the Prime Minster off track just as he was warming up to lather the former PM on the issues relating to the bundle of loans, which make up the Superbond. I only learnt one word from that exchange, ‘scrofulous’, because Miss Lady got up and gone off, stating that this was “insulting language” and it offended her oh so much! What a spoilsport! Nevertheless, I still enjoyed the PM’s aphorism advising Musa that if he did not want to expose his behind, he should not drop his pants. This came shortly after one of the UDP’s favorite Ministers, Hon. Finnegan, told the chatterer from Toledo East that we will never forget the Superbond till we die!

After the meeting, the drama continued in the hallways of the House, where several questions from the media were addressed by the elected representatives, including the issue for salary increases by the Unions. While the leaders of the Unions, BNTU and PSU, have expressed optimism for next year, the rank and file is getting antsy, encouraged by politically motivated branch presidents, like this one here in OW. He continues to prattle on TV about this not being politics, while secretly lobbying for a vote for rejecting GOB’s offer and going on strike.

Anyway, a valuable message which came from the floor of the House on Tuesday, which the Unions should take note of, is that the Ashcroft Alliance, through the offices of the Safari Minister from the previous administration, is trying to fashion the PM’s very promise to carve out a salary increase for the Unions as a negative factor against the Government in its re-negotiation of the superbond. This billionaire and his surrogates continue to openly demonstrate how uncaring they are about Belize and her citizens. They would bar no tactic to undermine our country, even to the point of ruin, once their objective is met, which is to get back BTL by the hook or the crook. That is my take on Tuesday’s House meeting. Catch you next week, after the convention.

-1 1 0 42 2/14/2013 06:00:00 62 0/0/0000 00:00:00 0 0 0/0/0000 00:00:00 2/14/2013 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 0 885 robots= author= 5892 The Hostile Forces Women Face the-hostile-forces-women-face

Women are not only generally less physically aggressive than men but are also physically weaker in combat terms. Women and girls have, therefore, always been more at risk of physical and sexual assault. Most agrarian and pastoral cultures, based on a strict gender separation of roles, developed cultural norms that codified this physical imbalance into rules and laws that created an even greater legal imbalance. These laws were often justified on the grounds that they were protecting the “weaker” sex. The majority of current world religions have their genesis during the early development of these agrarian and pastoral peoples and reflect the same basic dominant male bias. They add an additional moral justification for inequality and frequently an unequal level of causation of gender violence. In this world view, gender violence results from the temptation that women pose and it is men who must be protected from these temptations. Thus, the emphasis in many religions for women to cover their hair (or shave it off), dress chastely and even cover their entire bodies.

Modern societies are more intellectually and less physically driven, and are gradually moving away from these traditional gender roles. However, even in the most advanced societies not only do the old stereotypes remain, but many of the old safeguards are gone. A few examples suffice to demonstrate how women all around the world are being subjected to increasing levels of sexual and other forms of violence.

A 15-year-old Pakistani girl, Malala Yousafzai, was recently shot in the head because she campaigned for the rights of girls to have an education and this is explicitly forbidden by the Taliban leaders in the area she lived in. A 23-year-old woman in New Delhi died of her injuries a week after she was viciously gang raped, beaten and thrown out of the bus that she and her male companion had boarded thinking that it was public transport. In South Africa, a 23-year-old woman died after being gang raped, brutally cut open and then dumped by the roadside. She died in hospital a few hours later but not before she identified one of her attackers. Medical personnel had to receive counselling because they were so traumatised by the brutal nature of her injuries.

These are but a few of the incidents that happen every hour of every day without notice to women all over the world. The encouraging thing about these examples is that they have created a huge wave of revulsion and protest by a broad cross section of their societies. Even though they are scared, young women in Pakistan are more determined than ever to pursue their education and many of their families are also coming out in their support. The wave of protest in India forced the police to follow through on the case leading the arrest and trial of 5 men on charges of rape and murder. This is earth-shattering in a country where rape is not usually taken seriously by the authorities and the victims are often blamed. South Africa, which has the dubious distinction of having one of the highest rates of rape in the world, is finally facing the problem seriously.

Unfortunately, the official indifference and lack of concern over rape remains unchanged in many other countries. Recently, after a woman in Somalia reported to authorities that she had been raped by security forces, she was arrested and charged with making a false report. She and a journalist who interviewed her were each sentenced to one year in gaol. Neither was allowed to present a defence. Her husband was also taken into custody and questioned but was freed without charge. The alleged perpetrators of the rape were never even questioned. The outrage voiced internationally has failed to spark similar revulsion within Somalia.

These high profile cases represent only a small fraction of the rapes occurring in every country but they have served to galvanise public opinion beyond traditional women’s groups. It remains to be seen whether the momentum will continue to build and create a real change in attitudes and policies. As the public service announcement on local television points out, “No woman asks for or wants to be raped.” It is bad enough that rape and the fear of rape place serious restrictions on women but it is made much worse by the minefield that many women,s must traverse when they report the attack. Time for all of us to take this issue seriously.

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Hon.As could have been expected, the United Democratic Party held and extremely successful National Party Convention on Sunday, February 17th at the Andres Campos Civic Center in Corozal Town. Some 8,000 party supporters gathered as the party’s national convention delegates, 567 of them came together to make important decisions for the forward movement of the UDP.


During the convention, what took center stage was the election of officers which included that of the 1st Deputy Party Leader, Party  Chairman, and Deputy Party Chairman. At the end of the voting the Deputy Party Leader’s position was taken by Hon. Gaspar Vega,  who received 311 votes while Hon. Patrick Faber received 233. Taking the Chairman’s position was Alberto August, who secured 379 votes while Roosevelt Blades got 183 votes.  Holding the position of Deputy Party Chairman is now Fern Gutierrez, who received 378 votes while Roger Espejo, who also contested the position received 180 votes.  If the votes do not add up to 567 votes its because there was one delegate who did not vote while the others represent spoilt ballots.

For those who speculated that the convention would have created a rift in the party, it was quite the contrary as immediately after the votes were counted and the winners decided, Hon. Vega and Hon. Faber congratulated each other inside the counting room with a hearty embrace. The feeling continued as they made their way out of the counting room and Hon. Patrick Faber embraced and raised the hand of Hon. Gaspar Vega to acknowledge his victory.  Then, it was on to the stage where the theme of unity resounded with Hon. Faber endorsing the party’s leadership and pledging his unwavering support for the United Democratic Party.

Echoing the sentiment of unity was the Deputy Party Leader, who explained to the gathering that the convention proved that the party was indeed a democratic one and one which would be able to move on after the votes were counted.

For his part, the Party Leader, Hon. Dean Barrow explained that while Hon. Faber was not successful, he has a position in the leadership of the party waiting for him. Another major announcement which  he heralded was that he would be leading the United Democratic Party to a third general election and based on the party’s accomplishments thus far, an almost guaranteed a victory when that time comes around. He went on to highlight those accomplishments to thunderous applauses from those gathered.

-1 6 0 54 2/21/2013 06:00:00 62 0/0/0000 00:00:00 0 0 0/0/0000 00:00:00 2/21/2013 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 0 355 robots= author= 5894 New Bond floats new-bond-floats-

A.On Tuesday, February 19th, the Belize Coordinating Committee negotiating the restructuring of the Superbond announced that they would accept the exchange of the old bonds, which were due in 2029 for new ones which will be due in 2038. Through a press release, the committee announced that all of its members have agreed to tender their Old Bonds in the exchange offer.


The release goes on to quote the co-chair of the negotiating committee,  AJ Mediratta as saying that The Committee appreciates the GOB’s willingness to negotiate in good faith and to adhere to what was in the end a fair and transparent process.” He continued saying, “I wish to thank Prime Minister Barrow for his personal efforts and leadership in working with the Committee to facilitate this process.”

Those who have now accepted the new bonds held over $338 million of the $548 million of Bonds outstanding.