Sunday, March 28, 2010
The Belize Times
Belize Times The Truth Shall Make You Free
SUNDAY MARCH 28, 2010
Issue No. 4686
PUP Rejects Taxation Budget Briceno to Barrow – Lead or Leave!
The budget debate kicked off in the House of Representatives with a robust response to the proposed budget for the financial year 2001-2011. In his opening salvo the Opposition Leader John Briceño declared that this was the biggest “tax whap handed to the Belizean people since independence.” In his presentation the Party Leader broke down the budget step by step, highlighting the fact that the UDP budget falls far short of delivering on their 21 promises. From the Opposition side of the House, the message was clear – WE NOH HAPPY! The people of Belize are being forced to swallow a huge bitter pill of taxation while only paltry relief is being offered which seems more like a distraction from the painful reality than any meaningful assistance to the poor. In laying out the numbers, Deputy Party Leader Mark Espat argued that the government claims to be compassionate but makes absolutely no apology for
BCCI Reacts to Barrow’s Bogus Budget
The Chamber of Commerce has come out swinging at the budget presented by the Prime Minister of Belize, entitled for some unsubstantiated reason ‘Recovery Today…Prosperity Tomorrow!’ Belizeans have speculated that based on the fact that the budget is all about increased taxation and not much else, it should be more aptly named – ‘Pay Today…Poorer Tomorrow!’ While the Chamber did not openly agree with that speculation, they did say that the budget, from the way it was formulated and formatted, does not reflect that there has been any planning and prioritizing. According to the Chamber, much more analysis needs to be done on this budget to determine the true picture of the impact of the new taxes. In addition, that body is not optimistic that the growth projected by Barrow in the budget is realistic, asking – “Where will it come from?” The assumptions used to justify the projected growth will not hold true, if one is to judge from local and regional indicators and experiences. And from the results of an informal
survey of its members done by the Chamber, businesses across the Board are in no position to deal with these latest tax measures imposed by government. According to the results of the survey – “60% of the members who replied stated that they have had to borrow to meet recurrent expenditures over (Continued on page 35)
(Continued on page 35)
Shootout in the City
Thursday, March 25, 2010 Robbers have proven over and over that they can commit crime wantonly and hardly ever be caught. This morning however, at least for one thief, he was caught both by cops and on camera as he fled the scene, leaving behind his bicycle and a red cap.
The broad daylight jacking took place at Accents Store right next door to Jal’s Travel and Tours at the old Marelco Building on North Front Street. It happened in the peak of the morning rush hour, at 10:30 when children at the nearby Holy Redeemer Primary School (Continued on page 35)
Are YOU Better Off Today?
The Belize Times
Sunday, March 28, 2010
Questions to Ministers 1
Follow the light 2 In the early hours after the Prime Minister’s presentation of his Government’s budget the defining moment of the day’s events was the rage-filled insults hurled across the floor at members of the Opposition. The images that were seen on television during the evening news were of a legislative process reduced to a street corner quarrel. For those Belizeans who are old enough to have followed the legislative process for the past 20 or so years, they would say that people like Phillip Goldson, Harry Courtenay, Curl Thompson, Lindy Rogers, Madam Liz and those legislators who have passed on must be turning in their graves. They were people who were known for their firebrand style of debating, but never in their years in Parliament did they reduce their presentations in the House to personal insults and vulgarity. When you compare their contributions to the parliamentary process to what happened in the house last week, one has to lament that it was a sad day for Belize. The most lamentable aspect of all this is that as far as the history of the nation is concerned; Friday, March 19, 2010 was one of the most important days in the history of this country. It was on this day that the Prime Minister presented a budget that would strap Belizeans with a tax bill of $110 million dollars. It was also the day when the House debated a series of money bills that would see government pass legislation to allow the issuance of hundreds of millions of dollars in additional treasury bills and treasury notes, yet the talk across the nation in the days that followed focused to a large extent on the behaviour of the Prime Minister rather than what these bills will do to the people of Belize. In trying to explain his outburst in the House, the Prime Minster said in an interview on KREM that it disturbs him when the former Prime Minister gets up and speaks in the House. He believes that after all that had happened in the past that Mr. Musa should not speak. This is no reason for vulgarity. After all, Mr. Musa was elected by the people of Fort George and he must speak if he is to adequately represent the interests of the people of Fort George in the National Assembly. Yesterday when the Leader of the Opposition opened the debate in the House, he returned the conversation to where it needs to be, that of the budget and on the lives of the Belizean people. In his argument against the budget he made the point that on April 1st Belizeans will wake to a 25 percent increase in GST. This means that when Belizeans go to the store with the same amount of money in their pockets as they did the day before, they will not have enough to pay for the same goods and the services they were able to buy just a few days earlier. They will find out that their government has saddled the burdens of their incompetence onto their shoulders. The sad reality of all this is that while the people must pay an additional $110 million in taxes, they will find no relief from the crippling crime situation, or from the broken up streets. It will do nothing to put more children in school or see the roll out of NHI to those areas like Corozal, Orange Walk, Cayo and the North Side of Belize City. Nothing from these new taxes will bring any relief from the rising cost of living. The Belizean people are vexed over the behaviour of some of their parliamentarians, but more so, they are mad about these new taxes. They cannot afford to pay more. The Business Community, through their organization the Chamber of Commerce has come out against the tone in Belmopan, saying that they want the personal insults to stop. They have also gone on record to say that they cannot agree with the budget because the burden is not shared. In politics there are those who prefer the dark; they prefer to keep the light away from the truth but the truth is stubborn, it will always find its way to the light. This Barrow administration is fast running out of dark places to hide from the Belizean people.
Would the Prime Minister and Minister of Finance please say how he expects the very poor including single mothers and youth to live on the 7 cents a day which he is offering in his budget? Would the Prime Minister and Minister of Finance please say if and when he will revisit the fuel tax to reduce suffering on Belizeans, as the pump price of fuel continues to go sky high? Would the Prime Minister and Minister of Finance also say how he can justify cutting the budget for the Police and Belize Defense Force while increasing the budgets for foreign affairs and the press/propaganda office? Would the Minister of National Security please confirm or deny consistent reports that he has instructed his Commissioner to play around with the statistics so that they can try to fool Belizeans into thinking that crime is down?
Hypocrite of the Week
There was some consideration given this week to offering the award to the backwards Minister of Tourism Junior Heredia. He made some very dangerous comments recently which made many Belizeans realize, if they didn’t know it before, that racial profiling and racial stereotyping is very much a reality in our nation. We haven’t changed our mind about Heredia’s bigotry or his stupidity. But in the face of his remarks in the House today, we feel it imperative to once again single out a hypocrite second only to the PM. We refer, of course, to mini-Barrow Patrick Faber. If many people have their wish, there will be a special place in hell for the Minister of Education. He has singlehandedly destroyed the lives of so many people because of his singleminded pettiness and hatred of anything which is PUP or affiliated with the PUP. It is frankly disquieting to hear the manboy who stood up in the House to say that he fired single mothers and the elderly say in the next breath that his ambition is to be the Prime Minister of Belize. This week a single mother of four visited the Belize Times to tell her story. She had been a dedicated
school warden for four years when she received her termination letter just before school resumed after summer. She was told only that the Minister had other people he wanted for the job. The mother had just taken out a loan to send her two older children to high school. Without any source of income, she could not pay that loan. There are times, she told us, when she doesn’t even have food to put on the table. She does the best she can, but knows it is not enough. There are times she has wanted to give up on life, she revealed, especially when her children don’t have enough to eat and she knows from the look on their faces that they are still hungry. Her eldest daughter has also tried to commit suicide, the mother of four told us, because things are just so hard and it is a constant struggle to even keep her in school. She has lost her home and is even now looking for somewhere to live as she tries to get by each and every day. Patrick Faber, with malicious intent, destroyed this woman’s life and has damaged an entire family. And he doesn’t care. He says that he would do it again, because that’s the political game. This is the man who swore an oath to serve without fear or favour – the man who tells students that they should follow their dreams and never let anything keep them down. Patrick Faber is this week’s hypocrite, and he receives that award with a sincere and heartfelt wish that all the bad that he has done to undeserving Belizeans is visited upon him multiplied tenfold.
THE BELIZE TIMES EDITOR
Lucilo E. Alcoser
Printed & Published By The Belize Times Ltd. #3 Queen Street P.O. BOX 506 Belize City, Belize Tel: 224-5757
Sunday, March 28, 2010
The Belize Times
If Da Noh Soh…
Our women… This week I have to start out by bigging up the women of Belize. The thing is that a month just isn’t long enough…we gotta keep on doing it year round. There isn’t anybody who can downplay the contribution of women to just about everything. I kinda like one of the catchphrases I heard somewhere recently – that if we have to keep celebrating the ‘first woman’ anything, then we’ve got a long way to go (or something like that). But we’re getting there. Women have played a big role in my life (not the way you all think, you dutty minded people). Hell, I’m still a certified, bona-fide mama’s boy at the age of 36 and proud of it too. We never can say enough about all they’ve done for us, so nuff said…If Da Noh Soh!
Oh No… But for the love of God, could somebody keep Mayor Zenaida Moya at home, locked away in a closet
somewhere? Don’t get me wrong, she’s great for us over here on this side of the political game (we love you, go Z). But one dose of her silly, supercilious smile drives me up the wall. Did you all see her at the women in politics thing? The only reason I can imagine for Zenaida being there is if somebody had a presentation on what a woman SHOULD NOT be in politics. Zenaida in fact may be the reason why Dean Barrow never again lets a woman into the UDP. Jeez. Zenaida has presided over the most corrupt, incompetent, messed up, divided, foolish and absolutely clueless City Hall in recent memory. Hell, in all memory. GOB has had to make up new laws to keep her hands out of the cookie jar. That’s all on the record. Zenaida is the first woman mayor to be arrested and charged criminally for misappropriation of funds. How’s that for a record? She just pisses me off, walking around looking so saintly. The only thing to come out of Zenaida’s term in office is her multi-million dollar seafront mansion and thousands upon thousands of frequent flyer miles….If Da Noh Soh! Man stop joke… Fonso please stop play. You should be flogged for bigging up the women in politics thing on the front page of the Guardian. See, your prime minister doesn’t have so good of a record with women. He’s known for abusing them and kicking them to the political curb. There are quite a few names of women who dabbled in politics under the UDP before they were burned by Barrow. Just ask around. Anybody will tell you that it is the PUP who have genuinely fostered and appreciated the
great role of women in the nation’s development. The record is there. If you ask Dean to mention the name of one great woman in UDP politics
If Da Noh Soh!
Perdomo surfaces… He may be in a stupor most of the time, but Minister of National Security Carlos Perdomo reportedly surfaced long enough to remind fatty that he is not the Minister (yet) and can’t be issuing any arrest orders without his say so. Seems like Perdomo heard about the order from his buddy the Mayor of Belmopan, who’s no friend of Minister Pig. Ever since we
you know who he’ll mention, right? As far as we humble people over here are concerned, the only thing great about the ex are her great propensity for attracting taxpayer dollars in bulk and a great ability to dwell in the PM’s affections ...If Da Noh Soh! Minister Pig… Minister Pig from Belmopan (as opposed to Minister of State Hog from Rural North) was also on the Guardian, front page. I swear these guys are killing me. To make a long story short, Minister Pig sent some guys to claim some land in cotton Tree which does not belong to them.
News got out that Minister Pig was giving out land and more people turned up to claim land than was expected, so Minister Pig had to do a fast quick mud shuffle backwards. Did I mention that this land is private land in private hands? Anyway, Cabinet had to get involved because this thing was blowing up right quick. So now GOB wants to seize the private land and then parcel it out, but that’s a long process, see? They’re telling everybody who has already gone to claim their piece of the jewel in Cotton Tree that they have to hold up and back off. The part I don’t understand is that this whole thing was started by Minister Pig. But now he is on the front page of the Guardian as the super-pig who singlehandedly foiled those dastardly villains who were planning to grab land in Cotton Tree. Go figure…If Da Noh Soh! Arrest order issued… Word has also reached this columnist that Minister Pig has issued an arrest order for the same guy he sent to round up a crew and take them out to claim land in Cotton Tree. After the pig did his mud shuffle and about face, this gentleman apparently revealed that it was the same fat fellow who sent him out there. Fatty didn’t like that one bit we hear and visited the Police Station to issue his order. Chancey bugger…
broke the news that Minister Pig was trying to score Minister Beverage’s portfolio, Minister Beverage has been running his own underground smear campaign. According to him, fatty is an irresponsible child who just wants a new plaything and wouldn’t know what to do with it. In addition, claims Minister Beverage, Minister Pig has a whole lot of baggage himself which he’s been keeping in the closet, unsuccessfully at times. In return Minister Pig says that Minister Beverage is just blowing somuch liquor tainted smoke, because he’s already been promised the job by the big cheese immediately after village council elections…If Da Noh Soh! Deportee Dread… Perfect timing or what? Just a week or so after the predator-lookalike nasty dread was seen parading up and down a San Pedro beach in bright purple speedos, Junior announces that he’s been thinking about deporting those types of unsavoury characters back to the big bad city. Hahahahaha! Sometimes you have to tek bad ting mek joke! I hear Junior was under fire in Cabinet – not because of his racist remarks but because he wants to start questioning those coming to the
island to see if they have honourable and honest intentions before they are allowed to disembark. At least four ministers of Cabinet were furious, claiming that if that were the case, they would never be able to visit La Isla Bonita…If Da Noh Soh! Poor Philloughby… Saw Philloughby the other day and felt almost sorry for the guy. Almost! He didn’t have on his superman hat – probably retired it after just about everybody was telling him how stupid
he looked. Or maybe those people from Hollywood did show up and tell him that he was giving their superhero
a bad name and destroying the image. Anyway, the poor guy looked crushed and a little shell-shocked after finding out that people don’t like him very much. Word is that after the faux elections which made him deputy Mayor, the big bald cheese himself called in to say hell no – do it all over again till you get different results. Mark my words…sooner rather than later all the Moyalists and the Z-7 will be out of there. No side is going to win that there battle because they’re all caught somewhere on the road between crooked, lazy, incompetent and stupid…every jack one of them… If Da Noh Soh! Queen Square Market… Anything the UDP City Council gets involved in always goes haywire. Latest reports seem to indicate that the
Queen Square Market is at a complete standstill. Some discreet investigations have led me to believe that the SIF funding has all been diverted to other UDP projects which have suddenly become more important with village council elections right around the corner. If that is true, we wonder if SIF’s funding agencies are aware that money is being moved here and there to fulfill political whims…If Da Noh Soh! Mr. Then & Now… Was leafing through the Guardian this morning to get my laugh dose before getting down to business and noticed that there is no Then & Now column. Pity, because it’s one of my favourite columns. Seems like the writer got some bad news on Friday last (hint hint) or maybe some decision he wanted didn’t go his way on Friday (bigger hint). Maybe the writer feels that some of his ‘buddies’ betrayed him when he needed their support so he’s now sulking and worrying about the future of his previously ‘eminent’ career. Love your column, Mr. Then & Now, but unless you plan to give up the day job and write columns full time, you’d better watch out for those family ties…If Da Noh Soh!
The Belize Times
From the Desk of the Party Leader
Sunday, March 28, 2010
Corozal North Prepares
As village council elections approach, the PUP Corozal North is hard at work. Conventions are being held in the various villages. Sunday March 21 marked an important moment for the people of Corozal North. They were honoured by the visit of the Party Leader, Hon. John Briceno. The Party Leader had the opportunity to visit
land, our rights, and this in turn will only lead us to ruin. The new budget will only bring more suffering. Slates for Chan Chen and Paraiso are as follows: Chairman candidate - Ivan Castaneda, Councillor candidates - Hermelinda Castaneda, Antonio Maldonado,
the villages of Chan Chen and Paraiso. There, massive membership meetings were held. This was to endorse the slate and to hear important news from both the Party Leader and other guests. Hon John Briceno spoke of current activities and the unity that the party is forging. He also said that now is the time for the PUP and that we all should unite, and be prepared to work very hard. The various speakers mentioned that the UDP is taking Belize on the wrong path, and we need the PUP in Government more than ever. The PUP is the only political party that understands how to govern Belize. The UDP only knows to take away jobs,
Leobardo Keme, Emilio Keme, Elfidio Espinoza, and Mr Nazario Balam. Chairman candidate - Orlando Torres Councillor Candidates - Armando Sosa, Mr Tun, Miriam Cawich, Gregorio Monterroso, Jesus Chable, Luis Hill Other speakers included Chairman of the Northern Caucus Valdemar Castillo and Chairman of Corozal North David Meza. The party leader met the various village leaders such as Basilio Mena, Mrs. Yolanda Murray and many others. The villagers were all happy to hear from their leader. Slates have also been formed in the villages of Xaibe, Patchakan, San Andres, San Antonio, and Cristo Rey.
Back to the Drawing Board… A few weeks ago the Prime Minister alerted the nation to get ready for the “worst year of the UDP government.” This week he presented his budget and Belizeans found out that it was no joke. When the new financial year commences on April 1st Belizeans will start to shell out more at the store, at the doctor, at the bus station, at the drugstore, at the market. From light bills to phone bills, the Belizean consumer will see a 25 percent increase in the taxes they have to shell out. The Prime Minister is saying that we have to do this in part because our economy contracted by $30 million. Despite last year’s fuel tax that sucked over $ 30 million from our pockets, he still had a budget deficit of $81.6 million, 33 percent higher than he projected. Direct foreign investments into Belize were reduced by over 50 percent. In short, under the leadership of this Prime Minister, the Belizean economy crashed. As always, Mr. Barrow offers the usual lame excuses. The Prime Minister claims that the world economic meltdown continues to seriously affect Belize. What he doesn’t tell us is that the world economy is on the rebound. In the USA, our largest trading partner, the economy is showing signs of growth. Countries like Guatemala, Costa Rica and Mexico, are all experiencing growth in their economy. The Prime Minister’s next lame excuse is the “Super Bond”. He claims that when the previous PUP government renegotiated over US$500 million in loans from different banks, into one bond that it “shackled” the Belizean people for years to come. What he neglected to say however was that he supported the bond initiative. At the House meeting of February 2006, Mr. Barrow, then Leader of the Opposition said that he supported the super bond because he preferred that the PUP deal with this issue and not him when he is elected Prime Minister. He also agreed that by having all these loans as one bond, the interest rates would be much lower, government would be better able to plan its cash flow and that Belize would have more time to pay off these loans. Yet the Prime Minister continues to cry about the shackles of the ‘Superbond”. What he isn’t telling you is that in this new budget year, that government will be required to pay $65 million on the super bond which is around 8 percent of all of government’s expenditure, which is over $700 million. In 2009 the Belizean economy contracted, in part because of a loss of confidence by investors. This means that there is no new money coming into the nation. In this environment the Prime Minister, like a junkie looking for his next fix, expects to collect more revenues in this new budget year. His plan is to collect this in typical UDP style, by taxing Belizeans! The Prime Minister continues to levy the fuel tax, a tax he promised to remove if the price of fuel were to go above $ 7.00. He lied. He continues to rely on this tax and expects to collect another $30 million in fuel taxes again this year. He will increase GST by 25 percent; from this he expects to collect another $42 million. Your electricity rates will go up because electricity will be taxed an additional $10 million more this year. He plans to go after landowners and collect an additional $4.2 million. Business people, beware, the Prime Minister has promised to go and audit your books over and over until he can find another $22 million from what he calls “improved registration, auditing, and assessments.” To ease the blow the Prime Minister has promised to increase the income tax threshold to $24,000 per year. In effect approximately 3,000 more Belizeans will not be paying taxes. He has also promised to assist poor people with about $10 million in subsidies. While he expects Belizeans to be grateful, he is squeezing out another $110 million in his new budget. Ask any right thinking Belizean and they will tell you that Mr. Barrow’s budget is unrealistic! There is no way he will be able to meet the projections of his budget, not when we have businesses closing down, unemployment going up, a shrinking economy and a prime minister who continues to fight with the private sector. Unfortunately for Belize, the Prime Minister may be a good lawyer but he is a lousy businessman. He simply doesn’t understand how an economy works. It is time for the Prime Minister to go back to the drawing board and prepare a plan that will allow the Belizean people to “imagine the possibilities”!
PUP Condemns Racial Remarks By Tourism Minister The People’s United Party strongly condemns the remarks by the Minister of Tourism and area representative for Belize Rural South the Hon. Manuel Heredia, who in a television interview proposed limiting the right of Belizeans to freedom of movement. The Minister’s statement regarding people of Creole decent and his suggestion that interviews be conducted for people who wish to travel to San Pedro, Ambergris Caye are not only inappropriate but a clear violation of the right of Belizeans to travel freely throughout the country. We hope that at its next meeting, the Cabinet will reject this apartheid-type measure proposed by Minister Heredia. The scourge of crime has beset the entire country of Belize. The absence of a serious crime-fighting plan, the under-resourcing of the Police Department saddled with the incompetence of the Minister of National Security all contribute to a sense of hopelessness in the community. Now is the time for a carefully developed crime fighting plan with the appropriate resources and leadership dedicated to arresting this serious problem. The People’s United Party is also calling on Minister Heredia to immediately retract his comments and apologize to the Belizean people for his racist remarks.
Sunday, March 28, 2010
The Belize Times
UDP Politics as usual
Responses to the budget… As predicted, Mr. Barrow’s sweet delivery could only mask the sour reality of the budget for so long, and judging from responses coming in, Belizeans want none of it. Tourism stakeholders are now weighing in to warn the PM that his proposed new taxation will cripple the industry which is already floundering under the UDP. Everybody knows that tourism is the worst it has been in a decade – that’s certainly not Mother Nature’s best kept secret. And this new 25% hike in GST? Well, remember the proverbial pebble, lake and ripples. The increase in taxation turns the pebble into a boulder and the ripples into storm swells. And it’s not only the tourism industry. The talk shows are starting to light up about the new taxes. Even COLA weighed in this morning to denounce the proposed new taxation, stating that it will kill the poor people of Belize and severely impact the middle class. They plan a rally for the day before the budget presentation to ask the PM to reconsider his new killer taxes. Not that it will make any difference, because Mr. Barrow doesn’t care. With the exception of the Opposition which predicted the bad budget and which denounced it immediately after, most other organizations seemed to be fast asleep. And while they were asleep, Barrow’s lullaby presentation gave them sweet dreams. Oh, the orgasmic euphoria of hearing the golden-tongued orator tell us that he intended to tax us an additional $110M, but we shouldn’t worry because we wouldn’t pay more – in fact, we’d be absolutely better off. By the time most people figured – hold up – that’s stupid! It makes no sense; Barrow was already grinning from ear to ear and confident that he had bamboozled the Belizean people one more time. So to all those out there now clamouring for more consultation and a return to the drawing board, we have absolutely no consolation to offer. There ain’t no stopping these new back-breaking taxes. When you sup with the devil, make sure you use a long spoon. I’m sure a lot of people will get the sense of that after April 1. All Fools Day – Get it? Barrow is taking all of us for fools…
Killer Kops…Robber Kops! When something isn’t working, and hasn’t been working for a long time it needs to be fixed. If the attempts at fixing it are futile, then it needs to be replaced. Carlos Perdomo as the Minister of National Security hasn’t been working for a very long time. There is absolutely nobody who will dispute that (even Carlos in his sober moments would agree). The Police Department is going through its worst time ever – violent crime out of control, rogue elements within the department, cop-involved killings, internal corruption and the absolute distrust of the community at large. That is not politicking, that is a fact. It’s not working. On the news this week an elderly tourist reported on how he had basically been jacked and beaten by the Police for absolutely no reason. He had the bruises to show for it. This is a disgrace, plain and simple. Not only that, but after being beaten and robbed of his money, he ended up being charged by the very same Police. Coming on the heels of a long string of accusations and damning condemnation of the police, everybody believes that what the tourist is saying is the truth. It’s eminently credible. Nobody believes the Police anymore. There have been too many cover-ups, too many lies. When the police department loses the confidence of the people that is a very bad thing - maybe the worst thing that could happen. Until the Prime Minister steps in and removes Carlos, absolutely nothing will change. Things are just going to get much, much worse. No more stats please… This columnist would like to make an official request for the Police Department to immediately desist from releasing bogus stats to the public. It is a continued insult from our officials who seem oblivious to the reality out here. To tell Belizeans that all crimes are way down right now is a joke and nobody believes it anyway. Just to make the point – my family’s business was jacked last week Friday at gunpoint. That report hasn’t made it onto the sit-rep yet, one week after. My guess would be that it won’t make it onto the statistics list either. How many other reports haven’t made it on to the statistics list? We’ve been saying for a very long time that the Police Department is deliberately providing false statistics at the behest of its political masters. Now do you believe it? The AG’s nephew… The nephew of a prominent attorney and the Attorney-General and Minister of Foreign Affairs is wanted by the US for armed robbery and kidnapping. Apparently it’s in relation to a home invasion in Ohio in which the young Elrington was fingered. According to the news, the US authorities have tracked Elrington to Belize, where he allegedly ran in 2007. They claim that they are having no luck tracking him down using his family members. That’s a little strange, because everybody else seems to know where the young man is.
Don’t get us wrong. We’re not blaming the Attorney-General Saint Sedi for anything his nephew might or might not have done. We’re just saying that bastion of justice that he purports to be, Sedi should be the first one holding his hand and handing him up to the authorities. If that isn’t happening now, then what hope will the US have when they have to ask the AG to extradite his own nephew? Blood is thicker than water, or is that just an artificial belief, Mr. Attorney-General? BEL and PUC It is unfortunate that the eminent jurist Denys Barrow has put himself in the predicament which led to the ruling last week Friday. There is one point absolutely nobody has denied – the man got skills. Even the Opposition has said it. But like everything else, you need to know when and how to apply those skills and when to back off. There was so much room for the perception of bias in the case of BEL vs. the PUC that it almost seemed to be a done deal long before the decision was read. Denys Barrow put himself in a position to have a say in a case in which his son is a major player on one team. That makes absolutely no sense. If he had recused himself and the very same decision had been made, then no harm, no foul. But he didn’t. And that opens up a whole nother case of worms and a whole other avenue of unfavourable speculation. See, people were already pissed when the Prime Minister made his brother Denys a justice on the Court of Appeal. But he slid past narrowly on that one because the Opposition said – okay, we’ll give you a chance to prove that you can be impartial. And then BAM, the thing everybody had been saying. We’re no bright legal scholars here, but there’s this odd ringing sound which has been sounding since Friday when the decision was handed down about the appearance of bias. Could it be the death knell on the unblemished career of this eminent jurist? Hold up a minute, brother! Seems to me that once upon a time you could apply for land and there was a process you could follow. Seems to me that there was also a process through which you could acquire land with the right justification and with all conditions met. Remember that thing called law and order? Somebody should have told the big fellow from Belmopan, though. From all appearances there was this piece of land in Cotton Tree (allegedly more than 1,000 acres) which was privately owned. Word was going around that the Taiwanese gentleman who owned the land had died. So anyway, John Saldivar apparently sends out the directive that some of his guys from Belmopan can just go grab a piece of land out of the parcel, no worries. But then more people show up than John expected, so he does a big backslide and starts blaming the exodus on the same guy he sent to round up people and take them out there. Now all of a sudden now Cabinet is issuing an order that everybody who is dividing up the land needs to desist immediately and then GOB will start the process of acquiring the land. All of a sudden they remember about the lawful process of things. John Saldivar needs to be reminded that he is not the Minister of National Security yet, and even then he won’t be able to make or break the law as he sees fit.
It’s been days since the Kendall Bridge was washed away. How much longer must we wait for a new bridge, Mr. Prime Minister?
PARTY PAGE National Party Council Meeting
The Belize Times
Sunday, March 28, 2010
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Sunday, March 28, 2010
The Belize Times
Barrow’s New Taxes Will Cripple Tourism!!!
Tourism’s Impact Very Important Tourism is by far the single largest industry in Belize, generating just about 600 million Belize Dollars for our economy. It is also responsible for 25 percent of the jobs created, a major source of foreign exchange, of income and tax revenue for the government. It is believed that the tourism industry provides close to 60 percent of the tax revenues for the government. With the importance of tourism being so vital to the socio-economy wellbeing of Belize, we at this newspaper find it unfathomable that the Prime Minister would increase taxes without first consulting with the people and business community, especially one as important as tourism.
Tourism Struggling and Without Direction The cry from industry stakeholders for some time now is that the tourism industry has no direction. The consensus is that the decision makers over at the Ministry of Tourism and at the Belize Tourism Board are out of touch with the realities on the ground. Over the last two years, the industry has been in a downward spiral and the Government has been unable to provide the safety net or the adrenaline the industry so desperately needs. Increasing taxes on an already over-taxed and underincentivized industry is no way to help an ailing sector that consists of primarily small Belizean owned and managed businesses. Instead of providing real incentives to support the tourism stakeholders, the Prime Minister and his experts have decided to saddle the industry with a 25 percent increase in the General Sales Tax, a road permit fee, a sanitation tax, and a sport fishing license just to name a few. These new taxes and fees are in addition to the Hotel Tax, Departure Fee, Business Tax, Tour Operators and Guides License, Border Management Fee, Trade License, Business Registration, Social Security Contribution, Environmental Tax, Revenue Replacement Duty, Property Tax, Vehicle Insurance, and Property Insurance. Something may be missing but you get my gist. Just Too Many Taxes and Fees We know that the Prime Minister does not want to hear this, but the tourism industry is already burdened by too many taxes and fees at the moment and it simply cannot handle any more. The cost of doing business in Belize is just too much for most businesses to generate enough revenues to keep their doors open and more importantly record some level of profits. In fact, if one were to add airfare to the cost of coming or doing business, Belize would be considered one of the most expensive destinations in the region. Simply put, we are pricing ourselves out of the market and we cannot continue to operate in this manner. Take a look on the internet and you will find many businesses for sale or that have been closed down. The numbers are very alarming and it is expected to get worse this year. These new taxes are also untimely since the tourism industry is still reeling from a decline in arrivals, an increase in crime, and a decrease in overall consumer spending. What the Prime Minister should be doing is reducing taxes, increasing incentives, and creating an atmosphere conducive for doing business. It is unusual for a government to raise taxes in a country that is in a
recession and headed for a depression. In fact it is just downright stupid. And it is not just this newspaper saying this! Key representatives from the two leading tourism associations in Belize, the Belize Tourism Industry Association and the Belize Hotel Association have publicly denounced the government’s increase in taxes. Another important issue that the Prime Minister has completely overlooked is that many businesses are in contracts that do not include a 25 percent increase in taxes. What that means is that our tourism stakeholders will have to assume this additional burden. From what we have gathered, the cruise lines have already made it known that they will not tamper with the prices for their tour packages. If the Prime Minister and his financial gurus had only consulted a little, they would have been informed of this. What happened to consultation and transparency Mr. Prime Minister? You are indeed bogus!!! Who will be impacted the most? Obviously this UDP Government does not understand the make-up or dynamics of the tourism industry in Belize, so I will try to help them. There are over 600 hotels in Belize, and of that total 90 percent of them are considered small. Similarly, there are well over 200 tour operators, and except for a handful all are considered small. There are also many small mom and pop restaurants that feed both international and Belizean patrons. Other businesses include, gift
shops, massage parlors, boutiques, real estate agents and private and public destinations just to name a few. Belize provides a unique experience with the largest property having only 160 rooms. There are properties around the globe that have almost as many rooms as the entire country of Belize. Our size is one of the attributes that makes us special but it can also be problematic from a business standpoint. Unlike bigger, more profitable operations that have the cash flow or ability to access capital, the smaller businesses will be the ones most
affected. As mentioned before, many of these businesses are struggling to keep their doors open and to burden them with more taxes is just unconscionable. If taxes were being raised to better the tourism product stakeholders would not mind. Remember when Mayor Moya was willing to shut down the cruise industry to get a portion of the Head Tax. Back then she said it would go to improve the infrastructure in Belize City however, four years later most of Belize City is in a decrepit state and they cannot even pick up the garbage. We would like to advise the Prime Minister and his government that taxation without representation is like highway robbery. This might sound “clicheish” but tourism in Belize is at a crossroads and the decision makers led by the “light pints” and racist Minister of Tourism are struggling to decide which direction to head. It has been over two years now and all this government has done for tourism is claim fame for a tourism project negotiated by the People United Party. For Belize’s sake we really hope that they get it right sometime soon, the country depends on a vibrant tourism industry to better our lives.
The Belize Times
Sunday, March 28, 2010
FAREWELL TO JUSTICE
Today is a very sad day for Belize’s democracy, and in particular our justice system. Thanks to Dean Barrow, today we begin preparations to bid farewell to one of our giant pillars of social justice and equality, an individual who has over the years served as a bastion of integrity and fairness, providing the comforting assurance that no Prime Minister, no government, could take advantage of its citizenry. At a time when our young, wounded nation can ill-afford to lose another battle with madam justice, news has broken that Dean Barrow has no intention of renewing the contract of our Chief Justice, Dr. Abdulai Conteh. Was it because Dr. Conteh stood face to face with the oppressors that dared to tamper with our constitutional rights? Or was it because Dr. Conteh did not entertain Dean Barrow in his personal witch-hunt to jail our former Prime Minister, the Hon. Said Musa? Or maybe it was because Dean Barrow did not like the fact that Dr. Conteh made decisions favoring landowners instead of supporting a vindictive government hell-bent on victimizing innocent citizens. Whatever the reason, no one can deny that our Chief Justice did his job and did his job extremely well. Undoubtedly Friday, the 19th day of March, 2010, will go down in our history books for two significant judicial events. Firstly, the brother of the Prime Minister, Justice Denys Barrow, suffered a most injurious blow to an otherwise unblemished career when a panel of his peers determined that there was an appearance of bias in a case that he sat on involving B.E.L. and the PUC. Legal minds predicted that it was only a matter of time before such a challenge would be mounted in our highly political society, but no one thought it would have been
the very first case that Justice Barrow sat on. The simple fact of the matter is that the Prime Minister’s decision to put his brother on the highest court that sits in Belize was a bad move then and remains a bad move to this very day. As learned practitioners, both men ought to have known that the perception of justice is the key to any successful judiciary. Although it may be a mere coincidence, word came later that very same Friday that the Prime Minister met with the Bar Association of Belize to discuss the future of our judiciary and in particular the fate of our current Chief Justice, Dr. Abdulai Conteh. It was at that meeting that Dean Barrow declared that he has no intention of renewing Dr. Conteh’s contract. Word coming out of the Bar Association is that our justice system is in some serious trouble, when the highest post in the judiciary is left in the hands of a Prime Minister, especially one like Dean Barrow. Just imagine the potential damage that could be done if Dean Barrow gets to pick, choose or refuse who he wants to be the Chief Justice of Belize. Would he pick a fair and balanced intellectual who would call him out when he is wrong? Or would he choose a puppet who he can easily
manipulate to play along with his wicked objectives of jailing this one, and taking away that one’s land, and depriving us of our constitutional rights? Exactly where we are headed, no one knows. The executive arm of our government (the police) has been accused of killing innocent citizens and of killing their own. The DPP, well, we know that biscuit story. The Solicitor General and his Deputy are expected to vacate their posts in a few weeks, while the de facto Solicitor General, Lois Young Bar-
row, continues to rake in enough cash to retire lavishly in an oceanfront condo in Hawaii. The legislative arm of our government has been exposed as one of the most bold-faced, corrupt and nepotistic governments of all time. It took this Prime Minister and his government a mere two years to run this country into the pits of economic and social disaster. And now, just when we thought it could not possibly get any worse, the Prime Minister brings word that he does not intend to renew the contract of the one man who ensured that Belize remained a subscriber to the doctrine of separation of powers. It is now official. The fate or our judiciary, our last glimmer of hope, rests in the hands of the most hated, most vindictive Prime Minister of all time, Dean Oliver Barrow. May God help us all!
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Sunday, March 28, 2010
The Belize Times
Former Cop wins Round One against Police Dept.
Wednesday, March 24, 2010 Five years after he was dismissed from the Belize Police Department, former Police Constable Aldo Ayuso has won a decision against the department on his dismissal. The ruling was made this morning by Chief Justice Dr Abdulai Conteh in the Supreme Court. It came after arguments from Ayuso's legal counsel, Dean Lindo and attorney for the Attorney General's Ministry, Magali Perdomo. The case came about when Ayuso, convinced that he was unjustifiably terminated, lodged the matter at the Supreme Court for judicial review. The incident in question for which he was dismissed was an alleged altercation with Mary Chang and her then husband, Leopold Alpuche at a Chinese Restaurant on Newtown Barracks in 2005. Chang and her husband reported
the Belize Advisory Council, Ayuso was sent home. But as his lawyer has pointed out, before firing Ayuso the Commissioner at the time should have referred the matter to the Solicitor General in coming to a conclusion. Ayuso has been a controversial cop since the shooting death of twenty one year old Leslie Rogers Jr. in February of 2005. Ayuso was cleared of a Manslaughter charge for the killing, something he has never denied committing, but said he did in self defense after Rogers, who was moving away from police during a pursuit, motioned as if to draw something from his waist. In handing down his ruling, Chief Aldo Ayuso Justice Abdulai Conteh set aside Ayuso's that Ayuso pulled a gun on them and, dismissal, saying that the Commissioner following a tribunal, and consults with of Police should have consulted with the Security Services Commission and the Solicitor General before dismissing
One of Jamaica's own former Police superiors, Harold Crooks, is that country's latest most wanted fugitive. Crooks who authored the popular Crooks Report for the Belize Police Department has been confirmed by his attorney, Vincent Wellesley, to have fled Jamaica because in Wellesley's words, Crooks "has no faith in the justice system and has said that he is an old man so if he is convicted he will die in prison." Wellesley has not said where Crooks is now living. In November 2008 the famous 'Crooks Report' made news, not when its completion was discovered, but when its contents were not immediately
made public. The document, filled with observations of the weaknesses and loopholes within the department, from staffing to resources to bribery and procedures when dealing with criminals, and recommendations of how to improve the department, is 146 pages in length. The allegations against Crooks are major: that he and another man sexually assaulted an under-aged girl. No details have been given of the particulars of the incident or incidents but the other suspect was picked up by the St. Catherine police over the weekend. Jamaican immigration officials
The matter went to the Security Services Commission and the Belize Advisory Council. But it should never have gone before the Commission because Ayuso's rank was that of Constable. The Commission should only intervene when the rank of the officer under question is Assistant Inspector or higher. Ayuso says he wants reinstatement but if the Courts decide that he be recompensed for the five years he will settle for that. Before he reaches that stage, however, his case must go back before the Commissioner of Police who must follow proper procedures this time. If the Commissioner still decides to terminate Ayuso, his lawyer has indicated that they will appeal that decision as well.
Crooks Sought By Police
have confirmed that Crooks fled Jamaica on March 17th. That was a carefully planned plot by the once top notch cop because his departure took place one day before he was to meet with investigators at the Centre for the Investigation of Sexual Offences and Child Abuse. While the head of that centre has promised to track him down, he has also said that he will not return to Jamaica. Wellesley said Crooks has maintained that he is innocent but because of his fear of being found guilty, he decided to decline all meetings with law enforcers, despite Wellesley's advice to him to hand himself in.
The Belize Times
Sunday, March 28, 2010
Happy April Fool’s Day from your UDP Government
The recently announced tax measures that are specifically aimed at increasing revenues for Prime Minister Honorable Dean Barrow’s administration to close the more than $60 million shortfall in the 2010/2011 Fiscal Budget (and Belizeans would not be surprised if this turns out to be another bogus projection by PM Barrow’s Ministry of Finance) will have an deleterious effect on the economy as it will reduce our purchasing power and disposable income. Indeed, we will become increasingly poorer as we pay for PM Barrow’s inability to keep the government’s recurrent expenditures in check. Taking a look just at the 25% increase in the General Sales Tax’s rate, starting on Thursday, April 1st we will automatically lose 12.5 cents out of every dollar. What is more, when the 2% Environmental Tax is tacked on to the GST, the dollar’s value will be eroded by an additional 2 cents. Thanks to PM Barrow, a dollar will be worth only 85.5 cents as we pay GST on almost everything that we consume. No wonder that he projects that the GST rate increase alone will net the government $42 million in additional revenues. And no, fellow Belizeans, this is not an All Fool’s Day prank. Wish it were. But that is not all. It is expected that the recently approved 300% increase in the business tax rate that is paid by the Belize Electricity Limited and the various power generating companies will certainly be passed on to consumers as these companies will not decrease their shareholders’ dividends to assist the government in closing its shortfall. Never mind that consumers who use more than $150 of power, will also have to pay the new 12.5% GST rate on their usage that will result in a further erosion of their purchasing power. Imagine that.
If the abovementioned scenarios were not bad enough, the constant hikes in the gallon price of fuel (it costs almost $10 just now) will no doubt increase BEL’s operating costs as it will cost the company more to operate its diesel engines. This certainly will result in a request for an increase in the price of power from the Public Utilities Commission in the not so distant future. And let us not forget that the 12.5% GST rate will also apply to the telephone companies. We will soon dip deeper into our pockets to call and text and for our access to the internet. This means that consumers, who have been battered mercilessly by the out of control cost of living since PM Barrow took office, will find it extremely difficult to maintain the standard of living that they had grown accustomed to circa February 2008. In fact, the price increases will no doubt result in a change in consumption patterns as we will become much more selective when going to the grocery stores as we try desperately to make ends meet from pay check to pay check. Certainly this will not auger well for merchants, who will quickly find
themselves with overstocked shelves. And PM Barrow’s decision to raise the income tax threshold to $24,000 to give various Pay as You Earn (PAYE) employees some tax relief was clearly an afterthought on his part. As of April 1st those individuals who earn that gross annual salary or less will no longer be required to pay income tax. Nevertheless, any saving from the threshold’s increase will be quickly swallowed up by the GST. Besides, for every dollar earned above $24,000 per annum, the existing 25% income tax rate must be paid, resulting in more hardship for those unfortunate fixed income earners. It seems that this income tax break was designed solely to give the impression that PM Barrow cares about the people while he increases the hardship that will lead to more of us falling below the poverty line. This is unacceptable as more than 43% of us, according to the Statistical Institute of Belize, are already poor and cannot afford the basic daily food basket that costs about $5. This means that close to half of us either have to hustle, beg, or depend on the goodwill of
others just to make ends meet. But going back to the 25% GST rate increase, it will also have a deleterious impact on one of the key sectors of the economy, the tourism industry that has already been hemorrhaging as a result of the slowdown in the United States of America’s economy that has led Americans to cut back on their travel budgets. The U.S.A. is by far the main source for overnight and cruise ship tourists, who visit our shores. Clearly, tourism stakeholders, particularly in San Pedro Town, will hardly be amused by the new tax measures. From all indications, hotel operators in particular, who have experienced low room occupancy during this tourism high season, will have to absorb the 25% GST rate increase as the majority of their guests had already paid for their package deals before PM Barrow announced the new tax measures in his Budget Presentation last week. Likewise, the increase will make the Belize product less competitive when compared to other similar destinations as it will cost more for tourists to experience what we have to offer. As a result, we can kiss a sizeable portion of our foreign exchange earnings goodbye. Dear PM Barrow, this is not beating the proverbial dead horse but it is surely better to cut government expenditures and stimulate the economy than to take money out of the economy in the form of inequitable taxes and further contract it. Besides, this is not the time to make a desperate attempt at increasing revenues by placing an excessive burden on our shoulders. Clearly, you do not have any regard for the poor and vulnerable of our nation. Belizeans, we must demand a government that will put people first, and more importantly grow the economy.
Sunday, March 28, 2010
The Belize Times
Easter is here! I couldn’t wait for break to come, two weeks holiday! Yes! Okay, don’t mean to sound like I “hating” on school, but, you know, no matter how much we might really enjoy going to school a holiday feels like a get out of prison pass! This Easter we are going to Bacab! It is my treat too! I have been saving a dollar a day since January. Okay, I am showing-off, I know but I am really proud of myself. I told Dadi and Mommy that I was going to save and they helped me stick to my plan. Dadi bought a little piggy bank for me and Mommy helped by asking me for my dollar every morning before I went to school. Now I have my thirty dollars and I’m paying our entrance fees to go swimming at Bacab. Bet you never thought a dollar a day could do so much! I am going to start saving after Easter for Christmas! Do you want to start saving? Next week I will show you how to make your own piggy bank!
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The Belize Times
Sunday, March 28, 2010
Court of Appeal Discontinues Hearing of Landowners Assn.
The fight of the late Sir Barry Bowen and the Landowners Association ended on Friday in the Court of Appeal when the court discontinued the hearing of the case. The late Sir Barry, who crashed his privately owned plane while approaching San Pedro on Friday February, 26th, had challenged the government's original proposed Sixth Amendment Bill in the Supreme Court and Chief Justice, Sir Abdulai Conteh ruled in 2009 that the government’s proposal to amend a section of the constitution would take away landowners’ rights to access the courts if government seizes anyone's land for the purposes of petroleum and mineral extraction. That ruling
rendered the proposed Bill as unconstitutional. The government went back to court when it challenged that ruling in the Court of Appeal, but between the period when the arguments occurred, the Attorney General introduced a proviso in the
House of Representatives which it claimed would address any issue of constitutional conflict and the House went ahead and amended the Bill, then the Senate passed it into law. This amendment made the appeal against the original Bill null. But while the amendment met their needs halfway, Attorney for the late Sir Barry, Eamon Courtenay, has expressed regret that the appeal was discontinued because the amendment only accommodates for government to compensate landowners for royalties if their land is exploited and mass quantities of petroleum are found. But there are other issues Courtenay wanted to explore in the Court of Appeal that were
never dealt with as a result of the ruling. One other issue that was expected to arise out of the arguments was determining how both sides would have arrived at working out the royalties. Courtenay feels that there are remain parts of the Sixth Amendment Bill that are still unconstitutional and that there will be future litigation brought forth by concerned landowners regarding those same issues. The landowners were represented in court by Attorneys Dickie Bradley and Anthony Sylvestre. Courtenay was assisted by Attorney Magali Marin Young, while the government's attorney was Lois Young. The appeal was heard by Justices Elliott Mottley, Boyd Carey and Dennis Morrison.
Angry Belizeans March for Peace
Heavy rains could not stop nearly four hundred resolute mothers and relatives of murdered youths whose hearts have been shattered by the spate of gun warfare in Belize City streets, from marching from the end of Central American Boulevard near Caesar Ridge Road to the Belize City Centre. Their common messages were aimed at the criminal and the
politician alike: stop the crime and violence and restore peace and justice to a city gone mad. Chanting to words, songs and poems from famous legendary artists, and bearing signs with distinct messages to the criminals and politicians, the mourners and supporters headed for their final destination at the City Centre where some of them spoke of their loss
BY ORDER OF THE MORTGAGEE NOTICE OF INTENTION TO SELL HOLY REDEEMER CREDIT UNION LIMITED a statutory body formed and registered under the Credit Union Act, Chapter 314 of the Laws of Belize, Revised Edition 2000, and whose registered office is situated at No. 1 Hyde’s Lane, Belize City, Belize District hereby gives notice of its intention to exercise its power of sale as Mortgagee under and by virtue of a Deed Creating Charge by way of Legal Mortgage registered at the Land Titles Register between those hereinafter named and the said Holy Redeemer Credit Union Limited. HRCU will at the expiration of two months from the date of the first publication of this notice sell the property described in the Schedule below. ALL offers to purchase the said property must be made in writing to HOLY REDEEMER CREDIT UNION LIMITED from whom full particulars and conditions of sale may be obtained.
SCHEDULE ALL THAT piece or parcel of land being Lot No. 114 situate near Mile 8 ½ on the Western Highway, Belize District containing 772.22 square metres and being more particularly delineated and described as shown on Grant No. 157 of 1990 lodged at the Office of the Commissioner of Lands and Surveys TOGETHER with all buildings and erections standing and being thereon, the freehold property of Anthony Noralez.
and others prayed for peace. Many will remember the late Therese Felix, who in 2007 staged a similar march for peace along with activist Erwin X after three of her sons were targets of trigger-happy criminals. But on Sunday it was business woman, Yolanda Schakron, whose nephew, Christopher Galvez was murdered on December 22, 2009. The new group calls itself the Association of Belizeans for Justice and while it is still developing its agenda, it has already outlined means for counselling sessions for grieving families and for an attorney who will advise it on ways to work with the government and the relevant agencies aimed at addressing primarily street crime. The mood was both celebratory and sad - celebratory for the new movement and sad as some mothers visibly reminisced about sons who once filled their hearts. Some of them said while they wanted the crime to stop at
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once, other reflected on the state of affairs in Belize and said their hopes of a safer Belize cannot come overnight. But almost all the marchers were resolute in one thing, that stop it must! There were several politicians present, including the Leader of the Opposition John Briceno, who has for many months been appealing to government to address the problem by increasing the employment rate and creating more social avenues for young people to recreate. The rains also did not deter Honourable Briceno from marching and from being a part of the positive event. The Minister of National Security, who has for the past months come under heavy criticism for not doing anything significant to address the rampant crime, was also present. His government has also come under searing public scrutiny for not reversing the problems affecting vulnerable youths. Association members say while they will fight for peace and justice, they keep the pressure on so that one day Belize can return to the once peaceful haven most of us grew up to and knew and loved.
Sunday, March 28, 2010
The Belize Times
Family of Slaughtered Police Officer says he was Murdered
Police Sergeant Paulino Reyes, who shot and killed Corporal Gavin Sanchez early last Thursday morning, is on administrative leave. While that is not exactly interdiction, it certainly speaks volumes of the suspicion that hovers over his head, primarily because of the number of bullets he fired into his fellow officer, coupled with a string of irregular and unexplained events at the crime scene. The post mortem revealed that Sanchez was shot a total of nine times. Two bullets entered his head as well and he died from trauma due to severe head injuries. From all accounts, Sanchez had hurled death threats at Reyes after a previous incident at the Wet Willy's Bar on the Beachfront. That incident took place at around 11:45 last Wednesday night when Reyes was working special duty. He reported that while doing patrol at the bar he saw the two BDF soldiers and another police officer embroiled in a confrontation with Sanchez. With their help, Reyes took Sanchez outside and later to the San Pedro Police Station where Sanchez became unruly and threatened Reyes in front of other officers who wrote their accounts of
it. The incident where he was shot happened almost three hours later after Reyes had returned to the bar to complete his duty and then went back to the station. Somewhere upon his return, Reyes reportedly received word that Sanchez was waiting for him behind the station and that was when he asked the two soldiers to accompany him to the barrack room. But where the grey area falls is why Sanchez was never detained for the threatening words or for the conflict at the bar. And also, police later said that a .prohibited 45 pistol
The Court of Appeal last Friday upheld a 12 year sentence imposed on forty year old Levi Jackson in May of 2009. Jackson was sentenced by the Supreme Court
in May of 2009 after one of his former co-workers at Old Belize testified that he beat and raped her. The woman had been waiting at the roadside on the Western
was found beside his body. Officer Commanding the Eastern Division, Superintendent David Henderson told the media that there will be two investigations running parallel to each other: a criminal one and an internal one. The Director of Public Prosecutions will shortly begin to review the case file and is expected to give a determination on whether Sergeant Reyes will be criminally charged. But the family is irate at the circumstances and the number of bullets which led to their loved oneâ€™s
death. His wife, Taralee Sanchez feels that even if he was drunk and disorderly he did not deserve to be fatally shot, much less the number of times he was. If the name Cpl Gavin Sanchez raises your brows it ought to. Sanchez was the officer who had shot a fisherman on Iguana Street Extension on April 30th, 2008. Sanchez, who was off-duty at the time, reported that he was heading to his house at around 12:30 that morning when a man on a bicycle shouted at him. Sanchez said he was startled and ran into the drain and while trying to get his car out, the man returned to the scene with a handgun. This was when Sanchez claimed he pulled his gun and shot the man in self defense. That man, identified as 21 year old Lionel Sampson, was shot in the left leg and a finger on his right hand. Witnesses at the time claimed that Sanchez was drunk and after he ran his car into the drain, came out of the vehicle and opened fire on Sampson. They said Sampson tried to run and even hid under a car but when he didnâ€™t want to come out at Sanchez's orders, the off-duty Sanchez shot him.
Court of Appeal Upholds Rape Sentence
Highway in front of her workplace when Jackson drove up in his car and offered her a lift. She had told the Court that she accepted the offer because she had worked with Jackson. But he had different plans once she got inside the vehicle because he drove past her home at Mile eight and took her all the way to a feeder road in Hattieville where he demanded that she have sex with him. When she refused, he beat her before he raped her. Jackson had claimed innocence at his trial, saying the woman willingly had sex with him, but he did not convince the jury. Throughout his trial and appeal Jackson displayed a level of reproach, telling the Court that he should serve the time for the rape.
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Meanwhile, nineteen year old Kevin Santos was given a second shot at a trial after his guilty verdict and life sentence was quashed and a retrial was ordered. Santos was sentenced to life in prison on September 9, 2009 after a jury deliberated for almost three hours before finding him guilty. He was awaiting an appeal after he was found guilty of the murder of Chris Rosales, who was walking on Burns Avenue in San Ignacio en route to his house on Christmas Eve of 2006 when a group of youths attacked him and his friends because of the color of his shirt. During the confrontation someone stabbed Rosales in the back and chest, killing him. Justin Rodriguez was injured on the right arm and another youth, Kennylee Gonzalez, was also stabbed in the stomach. Joining Santos on the retrial list is thirty-three year old Jose Hueso, a Guatemalan national who was spending eight years for committing carnal knowledge with a 12 year old girl. The girl reported to Belmopan Police that Hueso had sexual intercourse with her on two different occasions in January of 2006. A medical examination later revealed that the girl had indeed been carnally known and Hueso was found guilty of the crime.
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The Belize Times
Sunday, March 28, 2010
COURT NEWS Adult and Two Minors Caught In Lara Charged With Robbery in House Charged with Burglary Magistrate Court Holding Cell
BELIZE CITY, Wed. March 24, 2010 Keith Lewis, 18 and two 17 year old boys who the Police caught in a house in Hattieville, were charged with burglary when they appeared in the #3 Magistrate’s Court on Monday, March 22. They pled not guilty to the charge. They were released on bails of $6,000 each. The burglary occurred on Wednesday, March 17 at the house
of Dyann Garnett, located at #361 Belizean American Site. According to repor ts the Police, acting on information they received, went to the house and found Lewis and the minors inside the house. There was evidence that the burglars cooked and ate food inside the house before they packed suitcases with a quantity of items which included cell phones, a digital camera, stereo, video games, video camera, assorted clothing, wrist watches, cordless drill, pressure grinder, coffee maker and several other household things. Reports are that the culprits were forced to walk with the stolen items through the streets of Hattieville before they were taken to the Police Station.
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BELIZE CITY, Wed. March 24, 2010 Telswin Lara, 22, who was charged last Friday with 2 counts of robbery, was charged with another count of robbery, one which he allegedly committed on Friday, March 19, while he was in the holding cell at the Magistrate Court waiting to be transported to prison. Lara was arraigned on the third charge of robbery when he appeared in the #6 Magistrate’s Court on Monday, March 22.
Man with Chicken Pox Charged With Sexual Assault
EMPLOYMENT OPPORTUNITY The Central Bank of Belize, the statutory body responsible for fostering monetary stability, especially the stability of the exchange rates and the promotion of credit conditions, is seeking to recruit an Economist.
The Central Bank is interested in persons with background in the following areas: • • • • •
Economics Economic forecasting Monetary economics Statistical analysis Macroeconomic management
The successful candidate will be expected to conduct/assist in economic research projects, engage in economic analysis, assist in the formulation of monetary policy,. Produce economic forecasts and produce/contribute to reports generated by the Research Department.
Applicant should possess: • • • • •
A Bachelor’s or Master’s degree from a University of international standing with emphasis in any of the above subject areas; Excellent writing and communication skills; Strong quantitative , analytical and computer skills; Results oriented focus with good interpersonal skills and Working experience in an economics related position would be an asset.
The remuneration package is commensurate with qualifications and experience. Applications together with curriculum vitae, copies of transcripts and certificates must be submitted by Monday, 12 April 2010 to: Director Human Resources Department Central Bank of Belize P.O. Box 852 Gabourel Lane Belize City BELIZE Email: email@example.com Ref: Economist Website: www.centralbank.org.bz All applications will be treated in strict confidence.
He was denied bail and he was remanded into custody. The robbery occurred at around 10:45 a.m. The complainant, Alexis Rojas, reported to the Police that while he was in the holding cell waiting to meet bail, he was approached by Lara and a 17 year old minor. Rojas said Lara demanded money from him and Lara punched him in his face then Lara stole $20 from the front pocket of his pants. According to Rojas, the minor then demanded that he hand over his Quartz wristwatch and when he refused to do so a struggle ensued between him and the minor. Rojas said the minor managed to grab his wristwatch during the struggle but then a police officer intervened and the minor gave him back the wristwatch. Lara, however, only gave him back $15, said Rojas. The minor, who was one of three persons charged with the robbery at Doony’s Store, will be charged when he returns to Court.
BELIZE CITY, Wed. March 24, 2010. Plagued by Chicken Pox, Preston Reynolds, 31, appeared in the #3 Magistrate’s Court yesterday to face another problem, a charge of aggravated assault of an indecent nature brought by his ex-common-law wife, Therese Elijio, 27, resident of Antelope Street Extension. Because of his contagious disease nobody wanted to be near Reynolds whose face was covered with a white ointment.
So after he pled guilty the Magistrate, Kathleen Lewis, quickly offered him a bail of $2,000 which he met. His case was adjourned until April 22. The incident occurred at around 5:25 p.m. on Tuesday, January 12. Elijio reported to the Police that she was sitting on her bed when Reynolds entered the house uninvited and got on top of her. She said Reynolds pushed his hand under her skirt and drew her underwear to one side. According to her, Reynolds then attempted to fondle her and she began to struggle with him. She said Reynolds slapped her on the right side of her face and left. Reynolds, however, has denied he committed the offence. He said Elijio is his baby’s mother and he would never do such a thing. Reynolds said Police charged him when they detained him in connection with their investigating of the fatal shooting of Frederick Flowers. It was while he was in custody, said Reynolds that the Police found out that he was wanted for aggravated assault.
Sunday, March 28, 2010
The Belize Times
COURT NEWS Police Constable Found Guilty Of Extorting $100 Fined $10,000
BELIZE CITY, Wed. March 24, 2010 A jury of 5 women and 4 men deliberated for about 4 hours yesterday before it found Police Constable Marlon Harris, 34, guilty of extortion. The jury’s verdict was unanimous. Instead of giving him a custodial sentence, the trial judge, Justice Troadio Gonzalez, imposed a fine of $10,000. He gave Harris until September 30 to pay. If he defaults on payment he will serve 1 year. Justice Gonzalez chose to fine Harris after he heard a pea for mitigation from Harris’ attorney Bernard “BQ” Pitts. The prosecution, represented by Crown Counsel Yohhahnseh Cave, was able to
prove that on December 1, 2008, Harris, under the cover of his office, extorted $100 from Turkish national Hytklin Kelat, the manager of Celebrity Restaurant. On November 30, 2008, the day before, Kelat was driving his vehicle on the Western Highway going to Old Belize Restaurant when he was stopped at a police check point at mile 4. Harris, who was working at the checkpoint, gave Kelat a summons to appear in Court on Tuesday, December 2, 2008 because his insurance had expired. But Harris, dressed in his uniform went to Celebrity Restaurant on Monday, December 1 and told Kelat that if he was given $100 he would give up the insurance sticker and the original summon. Kelat told Harris who was by the door to wait. Kelat then went inside the restaurant and called the Police before he handed Harris a $100 note with serial number DA 843131. Assistant Commissioner of Police David Henderson, who responded to the call, waited until Harris got the money before he took it away. There was a little discrepancy in the evidence of Henderson when he said that the serial number on the “blue note” was AD 843131, which was why the money was not allowed as exhibit. Harris gave a statement from the dock in which he admitted that he went to Celebrity Restaurant on the day of the incident occurred. But he said he went there to meet a woman whom he met at Raccoon Street Police Station.
BELIZE AUDUBON SOCIETY 41st ANNUAL GENERAL MEETING Invitation to attend and
NOMINATIONS CALL The Belize Audubon Society is holding its 41st Annual General Meeting on Saturday 17th April 2010 at 9:00 am at Crooked Tree Wildlife Sanctuary. Elections will be held for the Board of Director. Eight director positions are to be filled for a 2-year term.
Taxi Driver Charged for 676 grams of Heroin
BELIZE CITY, Wed. March 24, 2010 Evidence that heroin is circulating in Belize surfaced on Friday, March 19 when the Police busted taxi driver Moises Williams, 39, with 676 grams of the drug. Williams, who resides on Mahogany Street, was in his green taxi van when the Police, acting on information they received, intercepted
the van in front of McKesey’s Meat, near to his house. The police reported, that when they searched Williams they did not find anything incriminating. But when they searched the van they found a black plastic bag under the driver’s seat which contained what they suspect was heroin. Williams was arraigned on a charge of drug trafficking when he appeared in the #6 Magistrate’s Court on Monday, March 22. Magistrate Sharon Fraser explained to him that the Court could not offer him bail because of the Misuse of Drugs Act which prohibits Magistrates from granting bail to persons charged with that kind of drug in such quantity. She remanded Williams into custody until May 17. Williams was represented by attorney Dickie Bradley. According to reports, Williams said he was set up and the drug was given to him by a woman who wanted him to make a delivery. Another report is that there is a substantial amount of heroin in Belize but it is not of a high quality.
White Remanded For Burglary Charge
BELIZE CITY, Tues. March 23, 2010 David White, 32, a laborer of #21 Castle Street who allegedly broke into the business place of his next door neighbor 34 year old Raymond Matus, was charged with burglary when he appeared today in the #3Magistrate’s Court. White pled not guilty to the charge. He said the charge was bogus because at
the time the burglary occurred he was in custody at Queen Street Police Station. Nevertheless, the Magistrate Kathleen Lewis denied White bail and remanded him into custody until Thursday, March 25. Matus, who resides at #19 Castle Street, reported to the Police that his business place, located at #39 New Road, was burglarized between 7:30 p.m. on Friday, March 19 and 7:45 a.m. on Saturday, March 20. Matus said that items which were stolen included a Dremel set, a battery load tester, one half inch drive pneumatic tool, one blue and silver color radio, one power drill, one circuit tester and one set of spanners. He said the items amounted to $1,115 in value. White was detained by the Police on Saturday afternoon. White was released from prison on bail for a charge of robbery about 3 weeks ago. The culprit apparently entered the business place by breaking the lock on the metal shutters.
Voting members of the Society are invited to make nominations for any of the above positions by submitting the nomination with biography, by letter, to the Nominations Committee, Belize Audubon Society, PO Box 1001, Belize City, and email to firstname.lastname@example.org or by telephone 223-5004. The nominations must be received no later than April 9th, 2010. Please be advised that according to the Articles of Association, we cannot accept nominations from the floor at the AGM. To be eligible, persons must have been a member for at least 1 year and must be in good standing. • 8 positions are available namely: 1st Vice President, 2nd Vice President, Treasurer, 1st Secretary and 2nd Secretary and 3 directors. Our members’ presence at our AGM is of utmost importance. We look forward to seeing you there. Contact:
Anna Dominguez Hoare Executive Director Telephone:223-5004/4987/4988 Fax: 223-4985 Email: email@example.com
They Are Listening to YOU!
The Belize Times
Cops hunting former police commandant
A lawyer representing Harold Crooks â€” the former Island Special Constabulary Force commandant who is being sought by the police for alleged sex-related offences -- says his client has rejected his persuasion to turn himself in to the police. Crooks' attorney Vincent Wellesley, said despite attempts yesterday to persuade his client to surrender to the law, he remained resolute he would not hand himself over. "He called me yesterday and I told him to turn himself in. He (however) said he does not intend to do so," said Wellesley, in a telephone interview with the Observer. Police launched a manhunt for Crooks over the weekend after he failed on two occasions to turn up for an interview at the Centre for the Investigation of Sexual Offences and Child Abuse (CISOCA) last week. Deputy Superintendent Herfa Beckford, head of CISOCA, said attempts to find Crooks at his home had proven futile. "He made arrangement to come with his lawyer on Monday. It was then changed to Thursday but he still has not made himself available," said Beckford. "But we hope he will hand
over himself because anywhere in the world he is we are going to find him," she continued. Yesterday, Wellesley could not say whether or not his client was in Jamaica, noting that Crooks called him from a private number and that he had no means of contacting him. The lawyer, however, appealed to Crooks to report to the police. "He is presumed to be innocent; it is not in his best interest to run," Wellesley said.
Billions for Haiti, a criticism for every dollar A senior United Nations official said Monday that it will take up to US$11.5 billion in investment, pumped in over three years, for Haiti to fully recover from the catastrophic earthquake. Damage wrought by the 7.2 magnitude quake was estimated at about US$7.8 billion, according to Alicia Barcena, head of the United Nations' Economic Commission for Latin America and the Caribbean (ECLAC). International leaders have already pledged US$3.8 billion over 18 months to help Haiti rebuild. The newly created Multi-Donors Trust Fund will be administered by the government of Haiti and other donors and will be monitored by the World Bank.
There are already concerns about Haiti's ability to manage the aid flows. "There's a problem of how to spend the money because one of the most affected areas in Haiti was the public sector," said Barcena, speaking at the annual meeting of the InterAmerican Development Bank Board of Governors, which ran from March 19-
23 in Dominican Republic. Donors also pledged an additional US$350 million to bolster Haiti's government budget for the rest of 2010. Haitian Prime Minister Jean-Max Bellerive said last Wednesday he did not have a breakdown of how much each country would donate. Bellerive met with a group of 28 leaders and multilateral organisa-tions for two days in the Dominican Republic ahead of the IDB meeting. The aid that is currently flowing into Haiti is feeding and sheltering some 4.3 million people, as well as providing medical care. But international aid groups and officials readily acknowledge they are overwhelmed by the scale of the disaster. And cracks are already appearing in relations between Haitian officials and those delivering the aid. Haitian leaders - frustrated that billions are bypassing them in favour of UN agencies and American and other non-governmental organisations - say foreign aid groups have gone out of control.
Sunday, March 28, 2010
Cuba's hunger striker over political prisoners brings state security
HAVANA, Cuba (AFP) -- A top Cuban state security official for the first time visited hunger striker Guillermo Farinas in hospital and urged him to stop his nearly month-long protest, a spokesman for the dissident said Sunday. The head of Cuba's department of counterrevolutionary activities, Hector de la Fe Freire asked Guillermo Farinas to end his strike, telling him his health was so poor that he risks dying, Licet Zamora told AFP by telephone. The spokeswoman said it was the first time a government official had visited Farinas since he began his hunger strike seeking the release of political prisoners on February 24. "Guillermo told him he first wants 26 political prisoners who are sick to go free," she said, adding that the official
made no comment on that request or others Farinas made. A journalist and psychologist, Farinas, 48, launched his fast the day after political prisoner Orlando Zapata died on the 85th day of his own hunger strike. Farinas has been protesting the treatment of 26 political prisoners needing medical attention in Cuba, the only oneparty communist regime in the Americas. Farinas was taken to a local hospital from his home in Santa Clara, 280 kilometers (168 miles) east of Havana, after he passed out on March 11, and is being fed intravenously. The Cuban government deems Farinas "an agent of the United States" and his protest "blackmail," and has said he would be "entirely responsible" for his own fate should he die. Farinas' hunger strike and Zapata's death have ignited international outcry. Spain even offered Farinas political asylum, which he turned down. Meanwhile, wives and mothers of numerous political prisoners completed an unprecedented week of protest marches in Havana in defiance of the authorities to press for the release of the dissidents, some of whom have been held for seven years. Havana insists it keeps no political prisoners, branding the dissidents in jail as "mercenaries" in the pay of the United States.
CARACAS, Venezuela (Reuters) -Venezuelan authorities have jailed a former state governor and presidential candidate who accused President Hugo Chavez's government of links to subversive groups in Latin America. The detention of Oswaldo Alvarez Paz, a veteran of the opposition COPEI party but not one of Chavez's most prominent foes, will fuel criticism that the Venezuelan leader is taking his nation down an increasingly dictatorial route. Picked up at home on Monday night, Alvarez joins a list of several dozen Chavez opponents now in jail, living in exile or facing probes in the South American oilexporting country. With the political atmosphere heating up before legislative elections in September -- seen as as a barometer for a 2012 presidential vote -- Chavez says his opponents are increasingly breaking laws in their desperation to topple him. A court ordered Alvarez's arrest for conspiracy, spreading false information and inciting hate, judicial officials said. He governed oil-producing Zulia state in the early 1990s and unsuccessfully ran for the presidency with COPEI in 1993. Authorities opened an inquiry into Alvarez earlier this month after he gave an interview to pro-opposition TV network Globovision accusing the government of ties to illegal groups.
"The Venezuelan regime has relations with structures that serve narco-trafficking, like (Colombian rebel group) FARC and others which exist in the continent and the world," he said. The accusations against Alvarez could carry a jail sentence of between two and 16 years, local media said. "I assume the responsibility for the things that I have said and that I do," he told reporters before his arrest. His lawyer, Omar Estancio, said the arrest order was "disproportional" and "politicized" while COPEI, a Christian Democrat party, called the accusations "absurd". "The national government, once again using the institutions it has taken over, tries to silence criticism and denunciations by those who do not think like it does," the party said. Chavez supporters argue, however, their president is a victim of a U.S.-led campaign of vilification, and that he is reversing decades of exploitation in the OPEC member nation with policies for the poor like free clinics and schools. At the weekend, Chavez said he would not tolerate illegal use of the Internet or media by his opponents. Interior Minister Tarek El Aissami said pro-opposition local and foreign media were whipping up a "ferocious campaign" over Alvarez's case. "Would that they showed such solidarity with the poor," he told a news conference. Rumors that Alvarez was being held in solitary confinement were nonsense, the minister said, adding the politician would have to prove in court the veracity of his statements on TV. The best-known Chavez critic in jail is Raul Isaias Baduel, a former defense minister who left government in 2007 to campaign against his former boss but was imprisoned last year on corruption charges.
Venezuela holds Chavez critic for 'conspiracy'
Sunday, March 28, 2010
The Belize Times
WAYS BARROW COULD BALANCE THE BUDGET
1. Fire the firm of Lois Young and Company and use the services of the Solicitor General instead 2. Stop giving tax breaks to UDP cronies 3. Cut down on the Ministerial vehicle fleet 4. Stop subsidizing Belize City and Town Council Mismanagement 5. Stop the useless spending on spy-mobile and other espionage equipments 6. Stop awarding sweetheart contracts to SoBs1, FoBs2 and RoBs3 of Dean Barrow 7. Crack down on the blatant Ministerial hustling 8. Collect lawful taxes due from all goods flowing as contraband from the Free Zone and the Northern and Western Border of Belize. 9. Collect the $80,000 from Juliet Thimbrel, the $90,000 that Zenaida Moya overpaid herself and the extra legal tax breaks granted by Councilor Leila Peyrefitte. 10. Conduct a forensic audit of Housing for the Poor and recover all misappropriated funds 1
Supporters of Barrow,
Friends of Barrow, 3 Relatives of Barrow
The Belize Times
Sunday, March 28, 2010
After holding consultations across the country, we’ve still been unable to come up with even ONE POSITIVE THING which this UDP Government has done for the country since February 2008.
So we decided to ask YOU. What has this Barrow Administration done for YOU since it took office more than TWO YEARS AGO? Name one thing… JUST ONE!
Sunday, March 28, 2010
The Belize Times
Potted Meat Prime Minister The man lick we with the taxes In a great show of arrogance Not caring who he axes Proclaiming great abundance His family steadily waxes They shall dine in exuberance But he made it clear and concrete We shall have to settle for potted meat
Building a People’s Party...
Party Chairman Carolyn Trench-Sandiford On Saturday March 20th 2010, the National Party Council met in Scotland Halfmoon Village. This was historic as it is the first time that we met as a Council outside of Independence Hall. It also came on the heels of the National Executive meeting which was held in Punta Gorda Town the previous Saturday. This initiative of taking the party to the people represents a serious and concerted effort to reach out to our people, to connect with our people and to convey a message that each and every member is important, and each and every unit counts. It is about building the People’s Party.
Luncheon Meat Lawd sah, people dying like fly out here From hypertension, diabetes and heart disease Maybe your head, like Pablo's ain't too clear Those are the real killers in our beloved Belize You would think that in a climate so austere Taxes on these ailments you would appease So much for your palaver on healthy lifestyle You give us luncheon meat, ‘tis your sublime wile
Hot Chocolate Buay You must be flippin' Hot chocolate is GST free Your nuts must be slippin' Baldy, that just can’t be Belizeans don't do that sipping if cold Milo included I will agree Baldy a lower tax on coke and Belikin Certainly to our hearts is more akin
Violence and impunity Violence and crime beseech us Impunity so widespread Cry for justice for baldy is a fuss Official corruption is deeply imbed Those who should protect we distrust Sanctity of our institutions is dead It is time to think out of the box A UN assemblage can stop the crocs
Racist Minister Violence and corruption got no colour No matter what San Pedro Minister say The people that want the neighbours dollar Is the same people that society betray Setting blame on race denounced his squalor Compassion and benevolence we must convey, Learn to respect and help the fallen brother The problem remains if we continue to smother
It gives an opportunity for the leadership of the Party to hear firsthand the burning issues and concerns of our members and the Belizean people in their specific locality, and what we must take into account when evaluating the performance of the government, and formulating policies in preparation for governance. In addition, our presence reassures our supporters and the general populace that we are alive and engaged. As Chairman, I can never overemphasize the significance of engendering more inclusivity and participation in the affairs of our party. After all, we are the Party, and forging unity and chartering a vision for our country should not be the exclusive domain of the leadership, but rather, should embrace the contributions of all our people on the ground, our soldiers, our lieutenants, our generals. And how best to do that, but for the party to converge in a constituency, and together, to discuss the business of the country, the party and the locality, and to share experiences, challenges and discover opportunities for charting the way forward for the locality, our party and country. For if we do this as a Party, so can we when we are in government, for how you operate as a Party, is how you will operate as a government. And that is how we also will become a People’s Government. As well, it provides an opportunity to discover the natural beauty of Belize, as many did in Scotland Half Moon. It was amazing the impact the environment played and the mood it created in conducting the business of the day. Most of the members had never been to Scotland Half Moon, and were hard pressed to leave, enthralled by their surroundings. Of course, the hospitality of Max and Salomie Samuels, Carol Williams and the Belize Rural North Executive Committee contributed to this. Already, other Constituency Executive Branches are bidding to host future National Party Councils. I am hopeful that as we continue the journey of rebuilding, repairing and repositioning our party to be the next government, each and every member will once again feel the fire, the burning desire as did our forefathers and mothers, to be a part of a movement to create the NEW BELIZE, which will bring to all Belizeans a better life and a just share of the national wealth… but this can only happen if they know that they are counted, for they are the Party, and if we build a People’s Party.. Only so shall the revolution continue. NATIONAL PARTY COUNCIL
March 20, 2010
SCOTLAND HALF MOON VILLAGE
DECISIONS 1) To reject the $110 million dollars tax increase proposed by the Prime Minister in the 2010-2011 budget. The Party views this as the UDP’s most oppressive and inhumane budget ever to be placed on the Belizean people. To offer a tax increase at time when Belizean are already struggling to make ends meet will further erode the purchasing power of the working and middle class, all of which can only translate into a poorer quality of life for Belizeans. 2) To be vigilant in the upcoming village council elections in an effort to derail any attempt of the UDP to steal the village council elections through the recently enacted SI # 134 of 2009 which disenfranchises Belizeans. 3) Condemns the statement made by the Minister of Tourism and Area Representative of Belize Rural South on creoles and water taxi manifests as racist and unconstitutional. 4) To endorse the press release issued by the Party Leader Hon. John Briceno condemning the Prime Minister’s inexcusable, deplorable and unparliamentary conduct in the House of Representatives on March 15, 2010 and calls upon the Honourable Speaker to require him to tender an apology to the members of the House and the Belizean people, and to take appropriate measures to ensure that such conduct does not occur again..
Insert B B
The Belize Times
Sunday, March 28, 2010
Si No Es Así…
Nuestras Mujeres Esta semana tengo que comenzar exaltando a la mujer beliceña. En realidad un mes no es suficiente tiempo para celebrar a la mujer beliceña… debemos de celebrarla durante todo el año. Nadie puede empequeñecer la contribución de las mujeres que han contribuido en todo aspecto de la vida beliceña. Me gusta un eslogan que oí en alguna parte recientemente - que dice que “si tenemos que seguir celebrando a la primer mujer beliceña en cualquier cosa” entonces tenemos mucho por hacer (o algo similar). Pero si nos estamos acercando. Las mujeres han desempeñado un papel de gran significancia en mi vida (no de la manera que estarán pensando, ustedes que son mal-pensados). Aunque no lo crea, sigo siendo hijo consentido de mama a los 36 años, y muy orgulloso de serlo. Nunca podremos enumerar todo lo que han hecho por nosotros….mucho se ha dicho….Si no es así ¡Oh eso si que no! ¿Pero por el amor de dios, podría alguien mantener encerrada a la alcaldesa
Zenaida Moya en su casa, tal vez en un armario en algún cuarto obscuro? No me malinterprete, para nosotros en el lado opuesto de la política ella sí que es fabulosa (la queremos mucho, dale Z).
Pero con una dosis de su sonrisa tonta y arrogante me da ganas de jalarme el pelo. ¿La vieron ustedes en primera fila en la ocasión donde se discutió la integración de la mujer a la política? La única razón que puedo imaginarme porque Zenaida debería estar allí es si alguien debería de hacer una presentación en el porqué una qué mujer NO DEBE involucrarse en la política. Zenaida de hecho puede ser la
razón por la que el primer ministro Barrow no permita que alguna otra mujer participe en la política del UDP. Cristo dios, Zenaida ha presidido la administración más corrupta, la más incompetente, la más fraccionada, y una administración que no tienen ni la menor idea de lo que es una municipalidad. Jesús… desde que se conoce la municipalidad… nunca se ha oído de tanto mal manejo de fondos. Por dios, el primer ministro hasta tuvo que pasar nuevas leyes para cortarle las uñas a la alcaldesa. Esto está en los records. La Zenaida ha sido la primera alcaldesa que ha sido arrestada y a la que se le imputado cargos criminales por malversar los fondos de la municipalidad ¿Como le queda el ojo? Esta me saca de las casillas cuando la veo andar como si nada, como una santa. Lo único que ha hecho Zenaida en su tiempo como alcaldesa es su mansión que tiene a la orilla del mar y las millas que ha acumulado por tanto viajecito que se ha echado. Déjese de bromas Fonso por favor basta con lo de las bromas. Deberías de ser azotado por es-
tar resaltando lo de la mujer en la política en primera plana en el Guardian... Ves, tu primer ministro no tiene tan buen expediente con lo de las mujeres, especial-
mente en el área de la política. Él las ha atropellado y golpeado a punta pie en el área político. Hay algunas mujeres que se destacan habiendo participado en la política UDP antes de que hayan sido escaldadas por Barrow. Solo tiene que preguntar para informarse. Cualquiera le pudiera decir que es el PUP el único partido que ha fomentado y ha apreciado con gran sinceridad el rol tan significante el de la mujer en el desarrollo de la nación. El expediente está allí. ¿Si usted le pide al primer ministro que le mencione el nombre de una mujer importante en la política del UDP, puede usted imaginarse con que nombre saldrá verdad? Aquí de este lado nosotros, con mucha humildad, sabemos que esta su ex solo sirve para atraer los dólares del arca nacional y tiene gran habilidad en manipular los afectos de primer ministro. Si no es así El ministro porcino… El ministro porcino de Belmopan (muy aparte del vice ministro porcino del norte rural) estaba también en primera plana en el Guardian. Juro que
no entiendo a estos individuos. Para no hacerles el cuento tan largo, el ministro porcino envió a algunos individuos para tomar algunos terrenos en Cotton Tree que no les pertenece Se supo que el ministro porcino estaba dando terrenos y se aparecieron tantos que no había suficiente terrenos para darles. Por eso es que el ministro tuvo que retroceder en su decisión. ¿Les mencione que estas tierras son privadas? El gabinete tuvo que involucrarse porque este cuento se les estaba volviendo un problema. Así que ahora el gobierno decidió comprar estos terrenos para dárselos a su gente pero con el proviso que tienen que pasar por el procedimiento del departamento de tierras. Pero este es un proceso largo así que la gente no conseguirá sus terrenos muy ahora. Pero lo que no entiendo es que el ministro porcino ahora les está diciendo a todos que se esperen aunque fue el que les dijo que fueran a tomar los terrenos. Ahora se le ve en primera plana en el Guardian como el súper-porcino quien a solas ha logrado detener a esos villanos que se querían adueñar de estas tierras. Figúralo.… Si no es así
Sunday, March 28, 2010
The Belize Times
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The Belize Times
Sunday, March 28, 2010
The Peopleâ€™s United Party Cayo North Executive Committee announces that its Convention for the election of Village Council Candidates will be held on Sunday, 28th March at 1:00pm at Amigos del Pillar Archaeological Centre in Bullet Tree Falls. The List of Candidates are as follows:
Chairman Candidates: Jorge Aguallo Elifas Landero Nelly Waight Pook
Councillor Candidates Teresa Garcia Benjamin Manzanero Rigoberto "Maiz" Manzanero Lucas Medina Arnoldo "Compa" Melendez Jose "Rigo" Velasquez Adrian "Memo" Williams Apolonio "Polly" Williams
Sunday, March 28, 2010
The Belize Times
In February of 2008, the UDP under Dean Barrow promised to – Ease the cost of living by lowering electricity rates and telephone rates. It is now March of 2010, and the people of Belize are still waiting patiently… In February of 2008, the UDP under Dean Barrow promised to – provide greater spending power by reducing GST and reduce fuel costs by replacing RRD with a lower flat tax. It is now March of 2008, and the people of Belize are still waiting patiently… In February of 2008, the UDP under Dean Barrow promised to – create a minimum of 5,000 new jobs in the tourism industry. It is now March of 2010, and the people of Belize are still waiting patiently… In February of 2008, the UDP under Dean Barrow promised to – ensure private sector prosperity by achieving an economic growth of at least 6% per annum. It is now March of 2010, and the people of Belize are still waiting patiently… In February of 2008, the UDP under Dean Barrow promised to - build 1,000 quality, affordable houses annually. It is now March of 2010, and the people of Belize are still waiting patiently… In February of 2008, the UDP under Dean Barrow promised to – increase crime detection, successful solving and prosecution of offenders by installing a fully equipped DNA-testing facility. It is now March of 2010, and the people of Belize are still waiting patiently. In February of 2008, the UDP under Dean Barrow promised to – offer shares in a National Oil Company to ordinary Belizeans so that the masses could have a personal stake in the national petroleum wealth.
It is now March of 2010, and the people of Belize are still waiting patiently…
MR. PRIME MINISTER – HOW MUCH LONGER SHOULD WE WAIT?
The Belize Times
Sunday, March 28, 2010
Cinco muertos por explosión FC: urge que EU combata al narco de adictos desde una perspectiva de salud carro bomba en Colombia pública, que sea complementaria con los
Un carro bomba explotó el miércoles en un céntrico sector de una ciudad portuaria del suroeste de Colombia dejando al menos cinco personas muertas y 33 heridas, en un ataque atribuido por autoridades militares y policiales a la guerrilla de las FARC. La explosión se registró en inmediaciones a la sede de la Fiscalía General y la alcaldía de Buenaventura, en el departamento del Valle, 320 kilómetros al suroeste de Bogotá. El secretario de Gobierno del departamento del Valle, Víctor Manuel Salcedo, reveló que la mayoría de las víctimas son civiles y algunos efectivos de la Policía Nacional. El comandante de las Fuerzas Militares, general Freddy Padilla de León, dijo a periodistas que "es un hecho terrorista, lamentable que ocurra". El oficial admitió la posibilidad de que se trate de un ataque de las izquierdistas Fuerzas Armadas Revolucionarias de Colombia (FARC), el mayor grupo guerrillero del país. En el conflictivo puerto sobre el Pacífico, considerado estratégico para el tráfico de drogas y de armas, tienen presencia las FARC y grupos de narcotraficantes. Testigos dijeron que la explosión
destruyó los ventanales de varias edificaciones y afectó la estructura de la sede de la alcaldía de Buenaventura. El ataque se produjo dos días después de que rebeldes de las FARC quemaron siete camiones en la carretera Buenaventura-Buga y bloquearon por varias horas el tráfico de vehículos por esa importante vía que comunica al centro del país con ese puerto, el más importante de Colombia sobre el océano Pacífico. El Gobierno de Colombia alertó recientemente sobre el riesgo de que las FARC intensificaran sus ataques en diferentes regiones del país, como parte de una estrategia para ganar protagonismo y demostrar poderío militar en la antesala a las elecciones presidenciales.
El presidente de EE.UU., Barack Obama, afirmó hoy que firmará la “imperfecta” ley de presupuesto que incluye una relajación de las regulaciones para viajar y enviar remesas a Cuba, aprobada la pasada noche en el Congreso. En un acto en la Casa Blanca, Obama indicó que la ley de presupuesto, dotada con 410.000 millones de dólares, es necesaria para cubrir los gastos de funcionamiento del Gobierno pero criticó una serie de partidas adicionales, conocidas como “earmarks”, para proyectos patrocinados por legisladores individuales. La ley contiene también una medida que relaja el envío de remesas y los viajes a Cuba, cuyas condiciones había endurecido el anterior presidente, George W. Bush, en 2004. Ahora, los ciudadanos estadounidenses podrán visitar a sus familiares en Cuba una vez al año por el tiempo que quieran, en vez de una vez cada tres años y tan sólo durante catorce días como ocurría desde 2004. A partir de ahora, estos ciudadanos podrán también gastar en la isla un máximo de 170 dólares por día, en lugar de los 50 autorizados por Bush. Se eliminan también la restricciones a enviar comida o medicinas a Cuba, que hasta ahora estaban limitadas a los cien dólares mensuales. Y se amplía también la definición de familiar para incluir ahora también a los primos, tíos y tías. Hasta ahora tan sólo se podía visitar o socorrer a los familiares de hasta segundo grado: padres, hermanos, hijos, abuelos o nietos. Además, el presidente estadounidense pidió en su alocución al Congreso medidas que atajen las “earmarks”. “Voy a firmar una ley de presupuesto imperfecta porque es necesaria para continuar el funcionamiento del Gobierno. Pero también la veo como el punto de partida para un cambio más amplio”, destacó el presidente estadounidense.
Según explicó, si su Gobierno determina que una “earmark” no beneficia al público “buscaremos eliminarla, y colaboraremos con el Congreso para ello”. Así, en el caso de que esas medidas prevean el uso de contratistas privados para proyectos concretos, Obama quiere que se abra la licitación y que no se conceda el proyecto a una empresa privada determinada. La concesión de esas “earmarks” a empresas privadas “es el mayor elemento corruptor de esta práctica, como hemos visto en presentaciones de cargo y condenas judiciales en el pasado”, afirmó. No obstante, precisó que “cuando se hacen bien”, esas partidas permiten a los congresistas dedicar fondos federales a proyectos meritorios que benefician a la población en sus distritos electorales “y por eso me opongo a eliminar por completo” la práctica. El proyecto de ley, que en realidad contiene los presupuestos de doce agencias gubernamentales, supone un aumento del 8 por ciento en el nivel de gastos presupuestarios sobre el año fiscal 2008, o alrededor de 30.000 millones de dólares adicionales. De igual manera, la ley presupuestaria mantiene una medida que asigna 405 millones de dólares para la Iniciativa Mérida contra el narcotráfico y el crimen organizado. Del total, 300 millones de dólares van a México -150 millones de dólares menos de lo que solicitó la Casa Blanca- y el resto para Centroamérica, Haití y la República Dominicana. La ley también pone fin al programa piloto entre Estados Unidos y México que permite la libre circulación de los camiones mexicanos por todo el territorio estadounidense. La legislación incluye ayudas a favor de la iniciativa antinarcóticos para los países andinos y mantiene la veda a la importación de pollos de China. EFE
Obama Dice que firmará ley que flexibiliza medidas hacia Cuba
El presidente Felipe Calderón subrayó la necesidad 'urgente' de que México y Estados Unidos redoblen sus esfuerzos para combatir de manera integral al crimen organizado trasnacional en ambos lados de la frontera. Durante una reunión con la secretaria de Estado de la Unión Americana, Hillary Clinton, el mandatario destacó la necesidad de fortalecer las estrategias para el control de la demanda y el tratamiento
esfuerzos de procuración de justicia. La responsabilidad compartida, subrayó, debe concretarse tanto en los esfuerzos de intercepción de drogas, armas, dinero en efectivo y en la desarticulación de grupos delictivos, como en las acciones de prevención y control del consumo de drogas ilícitas. La Presidencia de la República informó en un comunicado del encuentro de Calderón con funcionarios de México y Estados Unidos que participaron en la Segunda Reunión del Grupo de Alto Nivel sobre la Cooperación contra la Delincuencia Transnacional Organizada. En tanto, la secretaria de Relaciones Exteriores, Patricia Espinosa Cantellano, y la secretaria de Estado, Hillary Clinton, informaron al mandatario mexicano de las conversaciones sostenidas durante la mañana con relación a los distintos aspectos de la cooperación bilateral.
Arias acusa a ambientalistas de tener "motivación interior"
"No creo que esas personas estén realmente enfocadas en proteger al planeta, creo que hay una motivación interior", sentenció Javier Arias -administrador general de la Autoridad Nacional del Ambiente (ANAM)- a quienes participaron en las protestas contra esta institución por permitir la tala de árboles en Calle 50. Arias manifestó en RPC Radio que la vegetación extirpada no se trataba de un bosque primario ni secundario, mas bien eran árboles enfermos, que antes de ser aserrados pasaron por los requerimientos legales, cuyo proceso data desde el 2008 y no es hasta hace unos días que la Alcaldía dio la autorización esperada. Incluso se exigió el pago de 180 mil dólares como compensación por la acción. Argumentaciones a las que la ingeniera
Raisa Banfield, ambientalista, respondió negando que exista alguna "motivación oculta" por parte de quienes se oponen a la desaparición de una plantación que servía para la captura de carbono, la generación de oxígeno, etc.. Sostuvo que los vecinos del sector deforestado les proporcionaron pruebas que demuestran la salud de los árboles y el hábitat que representaban para otras especies. Banfield señaló que la cantidad pagada por la tala practicada no es representativa de la labor que realizaba el espacio natural desaparecido. La ambientalista defendió la labor que hacen grupos organizados indicando que no tienen una doble agenda. Sostuvo que los movimientos que llevan a cabo los han desarrollado a lo largo de las diversas administraciones gubernamentales. Sin embargo el administrador de la Anam intervino diciéndole a la ingeniera "no le mientas a la comunidad, yo sé que esa es la labor que tú haces", insistiendo en que los árboles talados no estaban sanos. Y la retó a presentar a las instancias las pruebas de delito ambiental en que se incurrió.
Chile: daños por terremoto ascienden a $25 mil millones
Santiago de Chile.- Los daños netos por el devastador terremoto del 27 de febrero fueron calculados por el gobierno en 24,741 millones de dólares, descontados casi 5,000 millones de dólares por seguros. Es el primer catastro oficial en ser entregado por las autoridades, que estimaron que de ese monto el estado deberá financiar 9,330 millones de dólares. Las autoridades también calcularon en unos 7,606 millones de dólares los perjuicios económicos causados por el sismo y posterior tsunami por lo que dejará de producir el país.
El sismo provocó extensos daños en la infraestructura del país, sobre todo en la habitacional, escolar y hospitalaria, así como también en carreteras y puentes. En el sector defensa también se registraron daños sobre todo por la destrucción de un astillero de la armada y en algunas naves de la escuadra, incluso un submarino. La fuerza del tsunami que se abatió sobre la zona costera del centro sur del país fue de tal magnitud en algunos lugares que una nave de la armada que se encontraba en el astillero de Talcahuano, a 500 kilómetros al sur, fue lanzado a tierra, fuera del mar. El gobierno anunció un fondo de reconstrucción que será implementado con recortes al presupuesto de la nación, con algunos impuestos y con recursos de un fondo de ahorro con los excedentes producidos por el cobre, el principal producto de exportación de Chile. El recorte de gastos en los servicios aportará unos 730 millones de dólares, según informó el presidente Sebastián Piñera.
Sunday, March 28, 2010
The Belize Times
Great big balls but no sense…
By: Mike Rudon Jr. The Prime Minister of Belize has for all intents and purposes buried his big bald head completely in the sand. This, to his mind, must be an excellent short term strategy for several reasons. For one thing, he is completely blind to the incompetence, corruption and stupidity of his fellow ministers. For another, he does not have to open his mouth to explain anything to anybody and even better than that, with his ears clogged with sand, he doesn’t have to listen to the cries of the people when he gives them the Barrow bukut. With his head deep down in the sand, his ‘royal arse’ is sticking way up in the air, but that’s just not good enough. Hell, I love getting my weekly kicks in on the ‘royal arse,’ but to make it satisfying I would need to see the grimace on Barrow’s face when he takes it on the butt. See my frustration… Now to get the image of Barrow’s pockmarked posterior out of my mind, let me say that for months now this country has been going steadily down the drain. It’s so bad that it’s become kind of like that old horror movie refrain – just when you thought it was safe to go outside – BAM! Not one week goes by without some political scandal or the other, some kind of right in your face evidence of incompetence and stupidity. I was telling somebody the other day that the political creature in me is glorying in all this UDP mess which just keeps piling up. But the reality is that the Belizean in me is reeling in shock at how far backwards we have gone in so short a time. And we’re going further back every single day. I was watching the news last night and there’s this truly horrifying story of an elderly tourist who claims he was brutalized by Police for absolutely no reason. He had the bruises to prove it. Not only that, but the man says he was robbed of his money by the Police. And to add insult to injury, he was charged by Police for assault. I watched that man on the news state that he could have pled guilty just to ensure that he would be able to board his plane back to the States, but right is right. He preferred to stay in Belize and fight for what he believes is right. I felt angry at the Police who subjected the tourist to these indignities. The worst part is, there was not a moment of doubt in my mind that the man was telling the truth. Hell, members of the Police
Department have allegedly done much worse than that recently. This is what we have come to in Belize. The Prime Minister won’t say anything about this incident. He didn’t say anything when Teddy Murillo was murdered. He didn’t say anything when Chris Galvez was murdered. He hasn’t had much to say about anything serious lately. And then there’s the incident with the Minister of Local Government from up north. It was reported that
both he and his driver were drunk in the ministerial ride when they were stopped at a Police checkpoint by Escuela Mexico. Apparently both the Minister and his driver were disorderly and eventually the driver was charged with assault. But the Prime Minister will say nothing about his minister being drunk in a ride which we taxpayers bought for him (without our direct consent, of course). What would it have taken for the Prime Minister to speak? Would he have said anything if the ministerial ride had plowed down some innocent children playing by the roadside? And there are so many other cases of serious wrongdoing while the Prime Minister keeps his head buried in the sand. He hasn’t said anything about the fact that his Minister of Agriculture’s son is a director in a company that was given a lucrative government contract (right after that contract was yanked from another investor for no good reason). That stinks to high heavens, but Barrow can’t get a whiff because his head is buried in the sand. A co-worker of mine says she was at mass this past weekend and the priest was stating that it is past time that the Church stand up firmly against all the wrongs that are taking place in our small country. That seems only right,
21 since the Church is the most powerful organization in the world with a hell of a lot of authority. With authority comes responsibility – everybody knows that. But it’s not only about standing up against crime. It’s about standing up against corruption. It’s about standing up against dictatorship. It’s about standing up for transparency and accountability and good governance. The Church has been remarkably and very obviously silent as so many things happen to undermine our social fabric. With all due respect, it would be refreshing if that moral body would take a little more interest in what’s really happening out here, as opposed to pontificating for a scheduled hour or so daily. The reality is that we can’t expect too much from the Prime Minister. I tease him about his lack of balls all the time, but in all seriousness and in a rare moment, I’ll admit I was wrong. Mr. Barrow does have balls – great, big brass ones. He has shown that he can make decisions. What Mr. Barrow lacks is the sense, the competence, the vision and the compassion to make good decisions. That makes all the difference, Mr. PM – all the difference between a true leader and a penny-ante dictator/ despot.
–adjective 1. characterized by ignorance of or lack of good breeding or taste: vulgar ostentation. 2. crude; coarse; unrefined: a vulgar peasant.
J. A. Rebel
Belize is a multi-cultural nation in which, for the most part, we have all learned to live and interact as one people, one nation. Last week, the Minister of Tourism and Area Representative of Belize Rural South appeared to have forgotten that fact and made a racist comment aimed at the Creole people of Belize. His comments came after the Minister was questioned about the increase in crime on Ambergris Caye and asked his opinion of the best possible way to reduce crime on the tourism dependent island. The lame Minister wasted no time in basically saying that the best way to reduce crime is to start profiling creoles visiting the island since they are the ones committing the crimes. We all know that most people seeking jobs normally head out to San Pedro in search of a better life. This atmosphere has created a loophole for mainland c r i m i n a l e l e m e n ts to d i s g u i s e themselves within the crowds of honest Belizean looking for a job.
The Belize Times
But that has absolutely nothing to do with race. Sanpedranos are one of the most welcoming people; they are not racists. But because of the stupid comments of Junior Heredia, people perceive that his feelings reflect the general sentiments of Sanpedranos. No one would deny the fact that the crime situation on Ambergris Caye is escalating and about to reach a point where it may destabilize the tourism based island. It is very simple; no one wants to visit a place if crime is on the rise. We all know that as residents we take pride in the communities in which we live. Sanpedranos are the same; they are passionate about their community and want only the best for their island. Like the rest of the country, they themselves have come to realize that it would take just one ugly incident to turn their island upside down. But what do you do? Do you take the attitude of the Minister and start to profile
Belizean creoles in an attempt to reduce crime? Do you start attacking races instead of attacking criminals? No Heredia that is not the answer. You have totally missed the point. The fact that crime is on the rise in San Pedro Ambergris Caye is just a reflection of the bigger picture; crime is on the rise all over the country, thanks to the incompetence of Security Minister Perdomo. The solution to the crime situation on Ambergris Caye and the rest of Belize is quite simple - ask the Minister of National Security to resign or table a motion in Cabinet to have him replaced with a competent (if there is any) person. The residents of Ambergris Caye should demand that the Minister of National Security show the Ministryâ€™s police plan of action for the island. It is time for the Minister of National Security to say how San Pedro Ambergris Caye fits into the so called 360 degree approach to crime. It is time for the Minister of National Security to increase the number of Police Officers on the growing island. It is time for the Minister of National Security to better equip the Police in San Pedro, give them adequate sleeping and living facilities and give them a better salary so that they perform better. So when the stupid and ridiculous Minister of Tourism stands up and discriminates against a particular ethnic group in Belize, he is either doing one of two things. Junior Heredia is
Sunday, March 28, 2010 either so foolish that he unable to understand the real situation or he is simply running away from the real issues of the high level of incompetence of the Minister of National Security. Sure Junior Heredia, we accept your insincere apology that the Belizeans forced out of you, but you failed to apologize for something else. You see Junior Heredia what you fail to apologize for is the fact that the Minister of National Security Carlos Perdomo, your government and your party are incompetent and unable to solve the crime situation in Belize. The next time you want advice on how to deal with the crime situation on the island, just ask. Ask anybody who knows the real issues and they will tell you how to deal with it. Not only is Junior a racist in the eyes of the ordinary Belizean people, but he is a joke in San Pedro.
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Sunday, March 28, 2010
The Belize Times
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La Representación Amable de Segregación Racial It is as if every week, some member of this “village idiot” government makes their commitment to contract athlete’s foot in the far reaches of their tonsils public. Maybe it is not so innocent, maybe it is the case of the monkey that is climbing so high that it exposes itself as a political ass.(that word is in the Bible so it is not a swear word). Now, this latest racial profanity from the mouth of this Government really is as alarming as the unnerving thoughts we had when we thought after the police death squad scare that it could not possibly get worse. But those are famous last words because just when we thought this was the “grumsy” bottom, the UDP government politely stopped and cuss we “wussara”. They went oldschool on us to tar and feather us with another telling assault on the sociopolitical balance of Belize. Did you hear wat di man seh boss? Say it ain’t so, please. We heard the Minister of Tourism defending “deportation” of Belizeans within Belize, particularly the black one dehn. Wat???? Now, the Peoples United Party has condemned this obviously insensitive remark, and the entire country sings the same pitch of “we shall overcome”. To support the deep seated racial foulness in this remark by attacking the messenger castigating it, is to adapt the statement yourself. It is offensive to all Belizeans. Plain and simple. Agents of this neo-apartheid movement must be driven out as tyrants and be made to run alongside the despots as they flee. But this is Belize and we, as a stubbornly Christian nation, believe in the redeeming quality of the human soul. So, well, we tapped our collective feet and held our chins in the palms of our hands waiting for an apology or explanation. But what we got on March 23,2010 from “Junie” was no apology, not even of “sorts”, it was a declaration of regret that he is prevented by such trivial menaces as human rights and dehn kinna ting deh, from implementing draconian measures in his unholy campaign. Big and serious! The man, in a very nice way of course, said “Well definitely I have to be very honest. Like what I said in San Pedro, it is indeed a fact. Probably I offended somebody but it did have a very positive effect.“ What in Hades did he say? A fact? What fact? The fact that San Pedro needs to purge itself of black strays? Sound like he was standing behind his buffoonery, while boasting, politely of course, that this is a racial “fact”. Are we living in 1950 South Africa? South Africa, like Belize, is a country blessed with an abundance of natural resources including fertile farmlands and unique mineral resources. This country was colonized by the English and Dutch in the seventeenth century. Sometime in the 60's, a plan of ``Grand Apartheid'' was executed, emphasizing territorial separation and police repression. In 1951, the Bantu Authorities Act established a basis for African reserves, known as ``homelands.'' These homelands were independent states to which each African was assigned by the
government according to their record of origin. Africans living in the homelands needed passports to enter South Africa. The law branded them with the absurdity of being aliens in their own country. It appears as though the Minister’s frustration of not having the mechanism to enforce his segregation policy could be relaxed if he requested that the legal draftsmen up in Belmopan assist him by reformulating and updating the very effective apartheid laws which formalized racial insularity and racial hatred in South Africa. Maybe what he might be looking for is something like the Population Registration Act, of 1950 which led to the creation of a national register in which every person's race was recorded. A Race Classification Board under the Department of Home Affairs (a government bureau) took the final decision on what a person's race was in disputed cases. This law required that all South Africans be racially classified into one of three categories: white, black (African), or colored (of mixed decent). Classification into these categories was based on appearance, social acceptance, and descent. Hey, friendly Manny, what about the Natives Laws Amendment Act of 1952 which narrowed the definition of the category of blacks who had the “privilege”, as you put it, of permanent residence in towns. Rewrite section 10 of that law which would restrict “desirables” to those who are born in San Pedro Town and live here continuously for not less than 15 years. For good measure, maybe- in a genteel way of course - seeing you are nice; you could even throw in a law that says that a “creole” who has been employed out here continuously for at least 15 years, may be considered for residence in the new special enclave of San Pedro. I know! I know! How about reformatting the Natives (Abolition of Passes and Co-ordination of Documents) Act of 1952, otherwise known as the Pass Laws Act. This paradox of an act forced black people to carry slavery inspired identification documents which required black South Africans over the age of 16 to carry a pass book, known as a dompas, everywhere and at all times. You like that? The dompas was more like a revocable “permit”. This “pass” included a photograph, details of place of origin, employment record, tax payments, and encounters with the police. It was a criminal offence to be unable to produce a pass when required to do so by the police. No black person could leave a rural area for an urban one without a permit from the local authorities. And finally, would you consider pleasantly and in a hospitable way - of course - consider, giving those pesky “creoles” the gift of The Native (Black) Urban Areas Act of 1923 which divided South Africa into 'prescribed' (urban) and 'non-prescribed' (rural) areas, and strictly controlled the movement of Black males between the two. Each local authority was made responsible for the Blacks in its area and 'Native advisory boards' were set up to regulate the inflow of Black workers
and to order the removal of 'surplus' Blacks i.e. those not employed. Don’t be lazy though Manny, there are 317 erotic templates of these systematic and institutionalized racist laws. Check em out. It may give you more ideas as to how to swat the konkas of creoles pitching on San Pedro. Boy! Stop play, is it that black Belizeans will need a visa to go to La Isla Bonita? Manny must be right though, in fact he has inspiration from the healthiest democracy in this hemisphere. No other than the mighty Uncle Sam, had state vagrancy statutes up until the 1970’s. Dixie States after the U.S. Civil War enacted Black Codes. These were a set of laws that sought to maintain white control over the movement of
newly freed slaves between plantations. And here I was thinking that there was something absurd in Manny’s suggestion of racial profiling and restriction of free movement of Belizeans within Belize. No, this is nothing new. We should not let that silly thing called human rights or Belizean patrimony get in the way. After all, he is saying that we, San Pedranos, support these kinds of policies, and that is why the UDP are so successful in the municipal and general elections. Is he saying that this is somewhere in the fine print of the UDP manifesto? It must be because the UDP Government is yet to distance itself from the natural implications of that bitterly racist slur.
NOTICE Notice is hereby given that the below companies have been dissolved and struck off the International Business Companies Register with effect from the 17th day of March, 2010.
STAR SERVICES INC. STAR ADMINISTRATION INC. STAR OVERSEAS INC. STAR INTERNATIONAL INC.
ARIAS, FABREGA & FABREGA(BELIZE) LIMITED Registered Agent
UNDP/Agriculture Enterprise Development for Rural Belize Project BID NOTICE Invitation to bid for the procurement of the following items: 1. Automatic laser level control with horizontal plain (AED Item1) Quantity: One Location: Irrigation and Drainage Unit Acculine Pro Electronic Self Leveling Dual Grade Horizontal Rotary Laser Level or equivalent Acculine Pro 16ft Aluminum Rod or equivalent Acculine Pro Aluminum Tripod or equivalent 2. Drying Oven (AED Item 2) Quantity: One Location: Central Farm Gravity Convection Drying Oven Size: 3.2 cu. Ft. Temperature Uniformity: +/- 2oC @ 100oC Power: 115V/230V, 60Hz External Temperature Display Temperature Range: 15o C to 250o C 3. Tanks for Water supply macro structure (AED Item 3) Quantity: Four Location: Central Farm Type: Poly Tanks (Plastic) Capacity: 5,000 US gal each Inlet Size: 3" Outlet Size: 3" With tank fittings BIDS can be for one item or all three items. Bids should be delivered to the UNDP/Belize Office at the address below during the hours of 8:00 a.m. to 12:00 noon and 1:00 p.m. to 4:00 p.m. from Monday to Friday and no later than 9th April 2010. Bids must be submitted in a sealed envelope marked “AED Item 1, AED Item 2, AED Item 3 or AED All 3 Items”. Addressed to:
Environmental Programme Analyst UNDP Belize Constitution Drive Belmopan Phone: 501-822-2688 Fax: 501-822-3364 E-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org
Note: Bids must be delivered to the above office on or before 5:00 p.m. on 9th April 2010. Late bids shall be rejected. Please note that if you are not selected, a response will not be given.
The Belize Times
Notions by: Apathy
On the occasion of the celebration of international women’s month there were several forums held countrywide. It was in one of these that I saw some random government official declare that she would like to see women more involved in politics and that we were not to assume that just because women were part of elected government that they had any real voice. Well that may be true for the present government but far from what I recall to be true of government under the PUP. True it would have been nice if more women were involved in politics, but who can forget Gwendolyn Lizarraga or Jane Usher? Who can forget Dame Minita Gordon? These great ladies were pioneers for other illustrious women who came after like Dolores Balderamos Garcia. Mrs. Balderamos-Garcia changed the lives of Belizean women forever when as Minister of Human Development, Women and Civil Society she tabled and made sure bills were passed that ensure gender equality. She is also a published author and broadcaster. Perhaps the most important of Ms. Balderamos-Garcia’s legacy is her work as a human rights activist during her stint as Special Ambassador for Children, Gender and HIV/AIDS. It is through her work that a national policy was created that free life saving anti-retroviral medication is now provided to people infected with HIV/AIDS. Women under the PUP have always flourished. Who can deny the accomplishments of Lisa Shoman as Minister of Foreign Affairs and Foreign Trade? She is serving her second term as senator and has received accolades from both Mexico and Nicaragua. She has served this country as both our representative to the OAS and as Ambassador to the USA. Then there is one of my personal favourites, the ever controversial Amalia Mai. Love her or hate her, she continues to influence us not as part of the diplomatic corps anymore but certainly as the executive producer of the most
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watched television programs in recent times. She has such hits as the Open Your Eyes morning talk show, the Duets and most recently KTV Latino, which has even me texting for my favourite contestant. Ms. Mai has certainly hit her stride and is the most powerful woman
in Belizean television today setting industry standards; she has the pulse on what is relevant to her viewers. Women in the PUP have always excelled. We have had more women speakers under the PUP just to name them Clara Zetina, Elizabeth Zabaneh and Sylvia Flores. These ladies brought respect, order, and maybe that woman’s touch was what added the class and prestige that sadly is currently lacking in the House of Representatives these days. There are so many women who have done so much for so many; these are only a few outstanding examples. There are many examples of women who have served at the municipal level as councilors and mayors and done extraordinary work for their communities. So I beg to differ with the government official. There have been women… real women that have made and continue to make a difference in our country. They are not rubber
Sunday, March 28, 2010 stamp figures or ornaments, but real people whose commitment to the improvement of our society changes the way we live. It is a grave slight to these women and others like them to say that women are not and have not been present and active in Belizean politics. Hopefully this is an insight into the great significance Belizean women have in our society and maybe, just maybe people will be more careful of what they say.
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meg·a·lo·ma·ni·a [meg-uh-loh-mey-nee-uh] –noun
1. Psychiatry. a symptom of mental illness marked by delusions of greatness, wealth, etc. 2. An obsession with grandiose or extravagant things or actions.
The Belize Times
Sunday, March 28, 2010
Sunday, March 28, 2010
The Belize Times
RUDOLPH INNOCENT CASTILLO…… A MEMOIR
Today we gather to celebrate the life of Rudolph Castillo, Belizean nationalist. who dedicated his life to public service and diplomacy for which he was awarded the Order of Distinction in 2006. The Eulogist will amply reflect upon his lifetime achievements, his strength of character, his sense of humanity, and his deep devotion to family, and his numerous friends. I have the honour to reflect on his contribution in public service and diplomacy in the formation of the post colonial independent nation of Belize The history of the Belize Public Service is sparsely documented and little remembered. On the other hand the history of our colonial past and the nationalist, anti colonial movement that it endangered is well documented. It is self evident in the fact of our existence as an independent nation state for the past twenty eight years. Inasmuch as the transformation from colonial political control was a long, politically divisive and volatile process, so too was the transition process of the colonial administrative apparatus into a national public service. With little real preparation, the Colonial Civil Ser vice of British Honduras became the British Honduras C iv i l S e r v i c e w h e n t h e B r i t i s h government granted the colony self government status in January 1964. The appointment of Belizean Ministers for the first time meant that the
inherited administrative elite had a new, nationalist source of political direction. It was not an easy transition. Rudolph Castillo, joined the Colonial Civil Service on 20th June 1952 as an Announcer in the Information and Public Relations Service. By 1962, on 1st November of that year, he had risen to the rank of Chief Information Officer, Government Infor mation Service. In this capacity under the Information portfolio assumed by the First Minister of Belize, George Cadle Price in 1964, he became the voice of this dramatic change in the governance of Belize that occurred with the advent of self government .For many he was the credible symbol of a new way of government working to attain the goal
of national independence. For others he was the reviled propagandist of the new system of parliamentary democracy that, notwithstanding its Westminster origins, was in the hands of a new political elite, intent on asserting its power, riding rough shod over all manifestations of colonial domination; including the inherited bastion of the Creole societal elite, the Colonial Civil Service. In the ensuing period of mutual adjustment, the leadership structure of the Public Service, headed by Permanent Secretaries, re emerged to display a sustained level of professionalism, integrity and general adherence to well honed administrative principles. This became a hallmark for public sector performance in the development and implementation of public policy. Over time, there was increased emphasis on recruitment into the leadership structure of a politicized administrative elite. The pace was to accelerate in the post independence period producing a hybrid of the British White Hall model, with a permanent main public service, and a Republican type. Today the top managers of the bureaucracy, are now directly selected by the party in government for appointment to the leadership level in the public Service. Recruitment is largely from outside the service The names of the highly respected public ser vice leaders of the pre independence period are worthy of mention. They represent the range of the ideological perspectives and debate that simmered in the changing organizational culture of public service during that time: Rafael Fonseca, Donald Gill, Earnest Fuller sr., Earnest Fuller jr, Raymond Fuller, Hugh Fuller, Gilbert Young, Evan Young, Edward Young, Carol Campbell, Raymond Barrow, Douglas Barrow, William Hoy, Boysie Smith, Michael Hulse, Eldred Dakers, Walter Brown, Edmund Marshalleck. Hugh McCain, Ronald Clark, Egbert Grinage, Severo Pinto, Justo Castillo, brother of Rudolph Castillo. Some would argue that the last vestige of the White Hall public service model disappeared in 2000 with the constitutional amendment that replaced the post of Permanent Secretary with that of Chief Executive Officer. Others opine that only a change of nomenclature was accomplished and that none of the sought for improvements in public management leadership can be observed….. Public Sector Reform is moribund, and the public service continues generally NOT to be public friendly. It is also a generally held view that the now historic pattern of party political influence on Public Service recruitment requires assessment if the establishment of a truly merit based system of appointments and promotions is to function One tr uth can be identified. It is that knowledge of the art of leadership in public management and the implementation of public policy is not easily acquired. Many of the inherited methods of organizing and getting things done continue to be relevant and unique to the realm of public management. And experientially acquired know how is a necessary ingredient for the preparation of public managers. . Rudolph Castillo was promoted to the post of Permanent Secretary in the Ministry of Agriculture , Land and
Cooperatives on 23rd August 1974. On 6th October 1976 he was posted to the Ministry of Education and Housing. On 28th December 1979, he was posted as Secretary of the Cabinet in the Premier’s Office. .In 1982 on reaching the retirement age of fifty five years, he was rehired and continued to work in the capacity of Secretary to the Cabinet. IN December 1983 w he received his first diplomatic appointment as High commissioner to the United Kingdom and Ambassador to the European Economic Community, France, West Ger many, the Holy See, and UNESCO. He served with distinction until November 1985. In 1990 he was appointed as Belize’s first High Commissioner to Ottawa where again he did much to strengthen Belize’s relations with the government in Ottawa. He served there until 1993 when he retired from the Diplomatic Service It was not therefore an incident of history when he re entered the Public Service in 2000 as a Researcher in the Ministry of Foreign Affairs at the age of seventy years. Fo r t h e p r o f e s s i o n a l a n d administrative staff in that Ministry, it was a rich and rewarding experience to tap into the generously offered advice steeped in many years of public service and diplomatic work.His assignment to the Secretariat on Relations with Guatemala headed by Ambassador James Murphy came at a time when Belize was deeply engaged in the OAS brokered Facilitation Process that required intensive archival research support. Rudy, as we eventually dared to call him, became the erudite source whose knowledge of the history of the territorial dispute was augmented by his journalistic skills, his keen insights in the fields of international relations and diplomacy, his vast understanding of the working of Cabinet and of party politics. All this came together at the time when his expertise was direly needed to support the stellar efforts of Belize’s Bi Partisan negotiating team. For us in the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, it was a rare privilege and a pleasure to work with Rudy. We highly appreciated and valued his quick wit, sense of humor, and pr udence in problem solving. Certainly we were proud to work with someone who was living proof that public service is very possible beyond the mandatory retirement age of fifty five years….. . I hope that I have shed some light on one of the legacies in his impressive list of achievements. I know that if he has not already d o n e s o, H u g h M c C a i n , r e t i r e d Permanent Secretary now residing in Houston Texas, will be entering the name of Rudolph Castillo in his kept record of departed peers, perhaps reminiscing on the challenges of national development they faced in that time of transition. It is an appropriate time for introspection, and for contemplation of the future of governance in Belize as we remember the life and times of Rudolph Innocent Castillo……..
May he Rest in Peace.
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Sunday, March 28, 2010
The Belize Times
PON DI GULLY
D Will Your Lawyer Talk to God for You E
By anthony sylvestre I suppose as a defense attorney, every now and then you have to take a step back from this lawyer thing and you ponder on whether your craft is dubious as they put it; whether it helps to empower those in society or further disadvantage them. This is the feeling that consumed me as I watched the television the other night and saw the images of mothers, sisters, fathers, brothers, relatives and friends drenched in the rain, marching through the streets of Belize City to register their frustration, discontent and displeasure with the spate of crime in our country and government’s seeming impotence to deal with it. “Will your lawyer talk to God for you,” one of the placards held by one of the participants read. Naturally, it caught my attention. The words of the placard tell what seems to be the consensus opinion of attorneys these days. That is, that morality or ethics do not constrain us, don’t bother us, don’t matter to us; that we will do what we have to do to get our client off and are not troubled with what God has to say. This perception, of course, is not true, albeit how strongly held it is. Attorneys, like other professions, are bound by a professional code of conduct and ethics and are not magicians in court or “make people” get off as is commonly believed. Still, not many believe this and we are continuously viewed as less than savoury characters. This stigma more oftentimes is cast on defense attorneys. Many question how it is that so and so attorney can defend so and so person who has been accused of killing this person or the other. This is so because if we see a person on the nightly news being taken to court in bangles, 9 out of 10 times we believe that person is guilty. Thus, when we hear of a senseless gunman emptying bullets crazily in broad daylight on a busy street, causing the death of two or three and injuries to others, we cannot comprehend how any self respecting citizen can stand up in court and defend him.
My colleague loves to say that many spout this argument until one of their loved ones is accused of a crime and they need a lawyer to defend her. But watching that march for justice on the news on Monday, it is clear that the argument of victims of crime carries the sway. And it should. Really, too many accused persons are walking down the steps of the Supreme Court a couple years after being arrested for very, very serious crimes. I don’t think any of the participants in the march on Sunday have revenge in their eyes or is lobbying for the wanton sweeping arrest and jailing of citizens. The cry is for justice. And it seems to me that there is an understanding that as the wheels of justice churn, there will inevitably be slip ups now and then. But there seem to be just too many slip ups in the criminal justice system causing too many defendants to either be acquitted or have their cases thrown out for lack of evidence. This then, I suppose, is where the lawyers begin to be viewed as compounding the problem. They are viewed as facilitating this breakdown because as I said before, we “get people off ”. The truth is, however, that the entire criminal justice system which includes the police, courts and rehabilitation spots, needs to be looked at so that a balance can be created in the system. It is clear that there is an imbalance in the system skewed more in favour of the defendant. I say this because I see this every day in the system. When accused persons are acquitted because they have legal representation, it is not the doing of the attorney- it is because of a weakness somewhere in the system. Justice is famously depicted as a blindfolded lady to signify her impartially and fairness; to signify that justice is meted out objectively, without fear or favour, regardless of identity, money, power, or weakness. This depiction of Justice these days is scoffed at. The blindfolds are now viewed as covering the gaping holes of a blind person who cannot see justice if it were perched on her nose. Mr. Government, please do something, all people want is justice.
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Irrigation today is one of the most important activities sustaining the human civilization. Advancements since the 19th century have led to a rise in population and life expectancy through the development of medicines and food supplies. Food supplies were increased mainly due to improvements in crop genetics, herbicides, fertilizers and irrigation technology. Generally, lands that are irrigated have double the yields of lands without irrigation. Also improved are crop quality, diversity and the ability to extend the growing season (especially for tropical climates). Because of irrigation much of the world’s undisturbed lands are spared the fate of agricultural development. As such, the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) in collaboration with the Government of Belize (GoB) seeks to support sustainable economic growth of rural Belize through the enhancement of current agriculture production practices namely irrigation, and the creation of new employment opportunities in this sector. Specifically, the aim of this project is to establish policies and strategies that will form the framework for future development in irrigation and drainage to contribute to sustainable agricultural production. Under this Irrigation and Drainage Development Initiative, these enhancements will be realised through a set of legislative policies and regulations that will govern these systems.
I. Description 1.1 1) 1.2 1.3 1.4
In an effort to develop and implement the necessary beneficial systems, the individual will serve as: a Policy Consultant under the UNDP to develop a Draft Irrigation and Drainage Policy document and a draft five year strategic plan to support the Agriculture Sector of Belize, and Conduct an assessment of the present situation of the irrigation and drainage in the agriculture sector of Belize. The individual will work closely with and be responsive to the requests of the United Nations Development Programme and the Ministry of Agriculture and Fisheries in Belize. The individual shall receive payments as per the UNDP Guidelines on a monthly basis.
2.1 As the Policy Consultant for drafting the Irrigation and Drainage Policy and the draft five year strategic plan, the individual is expected to conduct the following activities over a five month period: a) Conduct a Desk Study of Belize’s Water Resources; b) Conduct an assessment of present status of irrigation and drainage in the agriculture sector, using primary and secondary information sources. c) Develop guiding principles for the consultancy; d) Establish and manage committees/groups; e) Conduct extensive consultations with industry experts, farmers and stakeholders to ensure pwide-sector participation and buy-in for any proposed policy and strategy; f) Liaise with officials from various Government and Non-Government organisations; g) Plan and organise all meetings, seminars or workshops related to the consultancy; h) Establish and manage Work Groups for conducting consultations, preparing and revising White Papers as well as organising the preparation of a Strategic Plan for Irrigation and Drainage in Belize. i) Be responsible for preparing a Draft Irrigation and Drainage Policy document and strategy; j) Liaise with a legal draftsperson to develop a draft Bill and a set of regulations that can be submitted to Parliament for approval. k) Conduct other relevant activities related to the consultancy in an effort to expedite the process.
III. Qualifications of the Consultant 3.1 3.2 3.3 3.3.1
The consultant must be an experienced expert in irrigation and drainage with experience in policy and strategy formulation. The expert should also have at least 5 years experience working in this field that has included designing and installation and management of irrigation and drainage projects. The individual will have previous experience in the Caribbean and/or in Latin America. Previous experience within Belize will be an asset. The individual will have good inter-personal, organizational and management skills and fluent in both written and spoken English language. A working knowledge of Spanish can be an asset. Specifically for the Policy Consultant, the individual is expected to complete the consultancy in a maximum of five months.
• As the Policy Consultant, the individual will plan and facilitate all activities related to the drafting of an Irrigation and Drainage Policy document. The individual will generate periodic Highlight Reports to inform the Project Management Unit (PMU) of the ongoing activities related to the consultancy. • At the end of the consultancy, the individual will present to the PMU, a draft policy document and a five-year strategic plan for Irrigation and Drainage for the agriculture sector of Belize.
In undertaking the tasks described above, the National Trade Institution will employ a combination of research, interviews and direct observation at MAF and BAHA offices, selected district offices as agreed in the proposed methodology. The Consultant will liaise and consult widely with relevant officials both within MAF, MFT, BAHA and the BBS and externally as required. Attention should be paid to obtaining the views of retired professionals, producers, importers and exporters. The Consultant will also liaise with the Project Execution Group of the EU funded Agricultural Enterprise Development for Rural Belize Project. The consultant needs to obtain approval of final report from MAF prior to submission of final report to the Project Management Unit of the Agriculture Enterprise Development Project.
The Consultant will be expected to complete the consultancy within 5 months after the signing of contract.
Applicants are asked to submit an application package which includes a minimum of: • 7 pages technical proposal outlining: o the suggested methodologies and work plan o Mechanisms for efficient engagement of stakeholders in the exercise. • Curriculum Vitae of the professional (s) involved • Financial proposal Applications should be addressed to: Environmental Programme Analyst Ref.: Irrigation and Drainage Policy UNDP Belize Constitution Drive Belmopan Phone: 501-822-2688 Fax: 501-822-3364 E-mail: email@example.com Note: Applications must be delivered to the above office on or before 5:00 p.m. on Friday 9th April 2010. Late applications shall be rejected. Please note that if you are not selected, a response will not be given.
The Belize Times
Strictly Personal Barrow is bogus!
by firstname.lastname@example.org “In response to a question from a journalist, Barrow expressed his personal support for Belize joining the jurisdiction of the new Caribbean Court of Appeal, which would replace the Privy Council as the court of final jurisdiction. He pointed out, however, that such a move would require an amendment to the Constitution.” – Channel 5 News, August 19, 1998. By the time you read this column, the House debate on the Barrow administration’s FY2010/2011 debate will have raged and the bill would have been passed into law. It doesn’t mean that everything that should’ve been said will have been said, and for sure we will be living with the consequences for some time to come.
Dean Barrow has made questioning Said Musa’s integrity a crusade and his prepared routines on this subject in the House are performance art. A few of his minions have opined to me that I am wasting my time and energy writing about his (Barrow’s) utter lack of integrity, his “laiyadnis,” his bogusness, et cetera, because he doesn’t read it. There are so many things wrong with Barrow’s FY2010/2011 Estimates of Revenues and Expenditures that it is hard to know where to begin but obviously the second largest tax hike in the past two decades does jump out at you. And the simple fact is that the humongous bite at the most inopportune time, i.e. in the midst of the worst recession in 50 years, is made so much worse because it is effectively an inflation promoter. Already consumers are seeing the spiking prices at their neighbourhood grocery stores as the shopkeepers anticipate the bill’s passage and enactment. Why can’t the Barrow administration make do with what they have? It was obvious to the Barrow administration at least by the middle of last year that we were in the throes of an economic slowdown, and they should have made the adjustments by then to ensure that the Government of Belize did not incur a large deficit. To so cavalierly blame the “planetary meltdown,” which by the way occurred in
2008, record fuel prices, which by the way occurred in 2008, Tropical Storm Arthur and Tropical Depression 10, which by the way occurred in 2008, for your lack of foresight is ridiculous. It was somewhere around May 2008 or thereabouts that the Prime Minister of Japan described the world economy as about to be beset by an economic storm the likes of which had not been seen in a hundred years. No doubt lesser folks would’ve taken note instead of pooh-poohing the notion that it would negatively affect us. I hate to belabor the point but Barrow’s cookie cutter budget is bogus in more ways than I have space to elucidate. Its prioritizations are all glaringly unoriginal and lack targets or measurable results. It is short-term (one year), and despite his paean to the benefits of program budgeting, it is short-sighted. It is also woefully short on details. It does not market Belize or encourage national or foreign investment. It does not address the fundamental weakness of a country that consumes more than it produces. It will not engender economic growth due to local factors. It entails no sacrifice by the political directorate. It does not account for the BTL debt bomb or any dividends. T he tax increases are totally unwarranted and unnecessary. Obviously the 17% increase in water rates along with the tax hike will increase the cost of living for the people who can least pay. I could go on, and on, and on … Barrow invariably chooses political
Sunday, March 28, 2010 expediency over principle. It is an ingrained reflexive response. He should be the last person to excoriate anyone on the grounds of integrity. As the opening quote shows, Barrow has been lying to us for a long, long time. When it was politically expedient, right up to a few days before the August 28th, 1998 General Elections, he supported Belize joining the CCJ. For the next ten years he was opposed. Now he has flipped his flop and is again supportive. Said Musa, on the other hand, has never changed his position on that issue. It is only one of several issues in which Barrow has demonstrated his manifest lack of integrity. Do I care whether or not he reads my column? That would be nice but the reality is that I don’t write the column for him - I write the column for those who read it. When I consider “talking” to Dean Barrow I am reminded of the old story about two men driving down a narrow one-way alley from opposite ends and meeting in the middle. Neither can pass and it is obvious that one (or both) has to back out. One driver rolls down his window and declares: “I never reverse for a—holes!” The other smiles as he puts his vehicle in reverse and declares: “I always do!” Barrow is bogus.
PUP Think Tanking Sessions Every Thursday, Independence Hall at 7:30pm
Sunday, March 28, 2010
The Belize Times
Belize #1 Sports Page
Victor Quan leads BTTA cadets’ table tennis cadet semifinals
Undefeated Victor Quan leads the Belize Table Tennis Association BTTA junior cadets’ table tennis competition, which began last Saturday and is now entering the semifinals at the Belize Elementary School auditorium to continue on the weekend of March 27-28. The RF&G 1st - 2010 NATIONAL RANKING TOURNAMENT "kicked off" this Saturday, March 20, 2010 with the CADET/JUNIOR Category with 16 participants between the ages of 10 to 13 competing in very intense Round Robin competition.
From 4 Round Robin groups, the top two from each group, making a total of 8 players, advanced to the final Double Elimination competition. Advancing as top seeds were Victor Quan, Matthew Usher, Steve Flowers and Harim Ochaeta. These four individuals worked themselves to the final four and will compete for the winner’s podium during the weekend. With Harim Ochaeta already securing the 4th place position, it is now left for Matthew Usher and Steve Flowers to decide the Third Place position, with the winner advancing to play Victor Quan for the top
Winner spot. Victor Quan is the only one of the three who has not lost a match in the double elimination final round. Also making it to the Double Elimination round were Adrian Cardona, Gian Lisbey, Jemuel White and Tony Chang who were eventually defeated by the 4 top seed players. In order to provide more opportunities for the kids to compete, a consolation category was organized for the remaining 8 competitors. In this category, Trey Guy and Raheem Pitzold have advanced to the finals and will also compete next weekend
to decide the winner. The tournament continues this coming weekend, March 27 & 28, 2010, when the senior players in the A B & C Categories will compete for the top senor titles. Format will also be Round Robin, with a final Double Elimination competition to determine the final winners in each category. Competition is expected to be intense as some 48 players have registered to compete in these three Senior Categories. Award ceremonies will be on Sunday March 28, 2010.
Excellence & Surprise lead 2010 Harrison Parks cricket competition
The Surprise of Lemonal and Excellence of Double Head Cabbage lead the SMART Harrison Parks cricket competition each with 6 wins at the half way mark of the competition. Surprise won over 4-time national champs Brilliant of Crooked Tree by a score of 173 runs to 150 runs. Under19 cricket star Herbert Banner was the Man of the Match, scoring 40 runs for Surprise, while Orlando Banner took 4 wickets. Brilliant’s top batsman Arturo Wade scored 27 runs and Landis Wade took 5 wickets. Excellence won over Wicked Eleven 250-35 in Flowers Bank. The score was 250 runs to 35 runs. The Man of the Match was Orson Flowers of Excellence who scored 35 runs and bowled 6 wickets. Emmanuel McFadzean, another Under 19 cricket
star, top scored with 54 r uns for Excellence. Randy Rhaburn scored 7 runs and Darren Rhaburn took 4 wickets for Wicked Eleven. Brave Union won over RG One Love by a score of 222 runs to 49 runs. The Man of the Match was Ryan Jones who scored 53 runs for Brave Union and Ewart Metgzen took 6 wickets. Leopold Morales scored 16 runs and Eric Milligan took 4 wickets for RG One Love. Berlan won by the score of 117 runs to 113 runs over Unfinished Business. The Man of the Match was Pharon Muslar who scored 41 runs for Berlan, while David Dawson took 3 wickets. A. Armstrong scored 22 runs and C. Chavez took 3 wickets for Unfinished Business. Easy Does It won over Saillows by
the score of 111 runs to 65 runs. Cyril Banner III took 9 wickets and won the Man of the Match award for Easy Does It, while Denfield Bull, Jr. scored 27 runs. Lloyd Casasola scored 19 runs and bowled 6 wickets for Saillows. Sunrise defeated Reggae Boys by the score of 94 runs to 37 runs. The Man of the Match was Tyrone Bood who bowled 2 wickets and scored 24 runs for Sunrise. Elvis Moody scored 13 runs and took 4 wickets for Reggae Boys. Kolbe Strikers won over Bright Stars by the score of 221 runs to 69 runs. The Man of the Match was Jermaine Smith who bowled 5 wickets for Kolbe Strikers, while Calbert Reynolds scored 39 wickets. Ardel Vaccaro scored 19 runs and Glicksten Bennett and Andy Vaccaro took 3 wickets each for Bright Star.
The Belize Times
Sunday, March 28, 2010
Belize #1 Sports Page
FC Belize & Hankook Verdes win BPFL football
FC Belize and Hankook Verdes each enjoyed wins in mid-week games of the Caribbean Motors Cup football competition organized by the Belize Premier Football League, which were played to avoid a conflict on the weekend with the Belize national team’s international match with Nicaragua in the UNCAF Under-20 competition, held at the FIFA goal project field in Belmopan on Sunday.
Daniel Jimenez had led Hankook Verdes to a 3-0 victory over BRC Blaze at the Isidoro Beaton Stadium in Belmopan on Wednesday in the sixth week of the tournament. Some 32 minutes of play had passed when Jimenez struck the winning goal and he added a second goal to the tally three minutes before intermission. BRC Blaze tried to reduce the deficit in the second half, but only succeeded in
earning ire with their over-enthusiastic defense giving up a penalty late in the ball game and Marlon “Matador” Meza converted for the 3-0 win. In Belize City Wednesday night, F.C. Belize struggled to salvage a 1-1 draw with Shanaiah Corozal out of the jaws of defeat. The FC Belize forwards made little impression on the visitors’ defense in the first half and it was still a scoreless draw at intermission. Darwin Innis gave the visitors the lead when he converted a penalty some 20 minutes into the second half. The city boys battled for the remainder of regulation time without a goal, and were staring into the jaws of defeat when Delwin Jones delivered the equalizer in injury time. The other two matches of the sixth week were re-scheduled for Tuesday, March 23, with Paradise/Freedom Fighters hosting the Belize Defence Force at the Toledo Union Field and the San Pedro Sea Dogs taking on George Town Ibayani at the Ambergris Stadium, but these games have been further postponed to a later date. The competition continues on Sunday afternoon when BRC Blaze hosts the Belize Defence Force at the FFB Field in Belmopan, while the Paradise /Freedom
Fighters take a boat ride to visit the San Pedro Sea Dogs at the Ambergris Stadium. The Hankook Verdes will await Shanaiah Corozal at the Norman Broaster Stadium, and F.C. Belize takes on George Town Ibayani at the M.C.C. grounds.
Belize U-20 wins 1-0 vs Nicaragua in UNCAF football
Team Belize won 1-0 over Nicaragua in the UNCAF under 20 triangular to qualify for the Central American and Caribbean games to be held in Mayaguez, Puerto Rico in July of this year. A m i n “ Ta c o s ” A u g u s t a n d Clifton West led the Belize offensive supported by Marvin Centeno and Julian Maldonado on the wings and Devon Makin and Allen Armstrong at midfield. The Nicaraguan visitors took the game to the Belize half of the field from the getgo and dominated ball possession for most of the 1st 30 minutes of play. Nicaragua’s captain no. 11 Norfran Lazo Noralez and Rafael Baguedano looked to put a hurt on Belize early on as they worked the ball into the goal area to fire shots at point
blank range on the goal. T h e M a n o f t h e M a t ch wa s undoubtedly Belize’s goalie Frank Lopez who was on top of things, jumping like a Jack-in-the-box - left, right, center, sometimes diving down to cuddle a ball or deflect a shot, to shut out the visitors for the entire game. Nicaraguan midfielders Juan Barrera Perez, Jose Carrion Mayorga and Gabriel Avilez and Axel Villanueva recovered the deflections and moved the ball in a crescent around the goal to launch another attack from another flank. Belize defenders Luis Mendez, Mario Villanueva and Edwin Palma were on their toes also, clearing the ball off the goal line but often gave up a corner kicks or lost possession
of the ball. Norfran Lazo almost impressed the scoreboard when he connected with a header on a corner kick and Frank Lopez had to dive for the save. Even when Thomas Swazo kicked the ball forward the Nicaraguan defenders Martin Sosa Narvaez, Erick Tellez, Rodolfo Moreira and Pedro Rodriguez Glez were there to challenge West and August for possession of the ball, breaking up the play to renew their attack. Belize finally got a break when West served the ball to Julian Maldonado on the left sideline, and Maldonado’s pass back to center found Clifton West who lobbed the ball over the head of Nicaragua’s goalie Henry Maradiaga to score the winning goal in the 28th minute of play.
Maldonado almost made it 2-0 on a shot that beat Henry Maradiaga who came way out of goal to meet the attack, but Axel Villanueva cleared the ball out of the goal. Amin August also tried a shot that went outside the sticks as Belize shakily held on to its 1-0 lead at the half time break. Nicaragua’s Daniel Reyes Avallan took over from Rafael Baguedano in the 2nd half and Jorge Portocarrera also entered the ball game, but the Belizean defense shut up shop to hold on to their 1-zip win. Belize is not out of the woods yet and should have tried to increase their goal difference to buffer them against possible goals which the Nicaraguans may score when they play at home in the rematch of the home in Managua, Nicaragua on Sunday, March 28.
Sunday, March 28, 2010
The Belize Times
Belize #1 Sports Page
Queen Square girls & boys & St Martin’s boys win in primary schools softball
The Queen Square Anglican School girls and boys both post a win while the St. Martin De Porres boys posted their 2nd win in the Belize City primary schools softball competition at the Rogers Stadium on Tuesday, March 23. The Queen Square girls, led by winning pitcher Raslyn Belgrave, won 11-10 over Calvary Temple School girls, whose pitcher Kassidy Swift was credited with the loss. Last Friday, winning pitcher Tyra Moreira led the Holy Redeemer School girls to a 10-8 win over the Central Christian School girls, led by pitcher Leanne Davis. Winning pitcher Akeshia Lucas led the Salvation Army School girls to their 3rd win 5-3 over the Calvary Temple School girls last Thursday.
Calvary Temple’s pitcher Emily Gutierrez was credited with the loss. Akeshia Lucas also led the Salvation Army girls to their 2nd win 10-3 over the Stella Maris girls last Tuesday, collecting 10 hits off Romelda Logan’s pitching to win. Last Thursday Pitcher Gilda Moguel led the undefeated St. Martin de Porres RC School girls to their 4th win as they walloped Leanne Davis’ pitching for a 13-9 win over the Central Christian School girls. The St. Martin de Porres girls had also won their 3rd game 6-0 over the girls of St. John’s Primary School, collecting 6 hits off the pitching of Ashley Bailey. The undefeated St. John Vianney RC School girls got the easy bye to their third win 7-0 when the Stella
Maris girls were a no show for their scheduled game last Wednesday. On Tuesday, winning pitcher Devaun Zuniga led the Queen Square School boys to an 8-6 win over the Calvary Temple School boys, led by pitcher Randy Gutierrez. The St. Martin De Porres School boys, led by their winning pitcher Ashton Pitts, posted their 2nd win by outlasting the Central Christian School boys 6-5, collecting 6 hits off the pitching of Miguel Delgado. Ashton Pitts had also led the St. Martin’s boys to their 1st win after two losses, 17-10 over the St. John’s Anglican Primary School boys, collecting 17 hits off the pitching of Shawn Phillips. Delgado did better last Friday, when he led the Central
Christian School boys to a 6-4 win over the Holy Redeemer School boys, who walloped Godsden Ferguson’s pitching to score 6 runs, even though Ferguson struck out 5 batters. The Wesley Upper School boys enjoyed the sweet taste of success in their win after 4 losses as they walloped the Stella Maris School boys 8-2 last Thursday. The St. John Vianney RC School boys got an easy bye to their 3rd win 7-0 when the Stella Maris boys were a no show for their scheduled game last Wednesday. Pitcher Mateo Gutierrez led the Trinity Methodist School boys to their 3rd win after two losses: 11-6 over the Wesley Upper School boys, led by pitcher Delawn Abraham.
The Belize Times
Births Mario to Tomas and Rosario Coy nee Salam Emeri Zion to Collin Mervin and Zaira Mierelli Estrada nee Martinez Yasmin Ester to Darsi Gaspar and Karina Faviola Salazar nee Vidal Joel Alexander to Jose Guadalupe and Ana Yolanda Garcia nee Gonzalez Elissa Chelsey to Irineo and Melissa Nicole Salam nee Williams Kiana Reana to Filberto Emiliano and Cruzita Teck nee Bolon Hadassah Abigail to Julio Noel and Narda Carolina Pablo nee Nunez
Marriages Dennis William Toomey to Tammy Marie Conley both of New Jersey, USA Florencio Pablo Rodriguez Jr. to Laura Inelda Valladares both of Progresso, Corozal Alberto Rodriguez to Juanita Marisely Casanova both of Progresso, Corozal Amelio Acosta to Rosita Hernandez both of San Felipe, Orange Walk Robert Francis Castillo to Rosa Cenaida Saquil both of Belmopan Michael Crispin Gladden to Ashley Shandy Terry both of Ladyville, Belize Answorth Erwin Dawson to Miriam Adela Rowland both of Sandhill, Belize Emilio Choc of San Jose, Toledo to Teresa Maria Pop of Red Bank, Stann Creek Kenneth Victor Bates of Caye Caulker, Belize to Nancy Jorgenson Holben of Scottsdale, Arizona, USA Jan Koukal to Sarka Malinova both of Czech Republic Kelot Jean Michel to Moseda Jean Baptiste both of Belize City David Allan Cruz Jr. of Belmopan to Phillipa Veronica Rowley of Sittee River, Stann Creek Cyrus Mira to Erin Hogan both of Belmopan, Cayo Cirilo Tzib to Dylane Mena both of San Antonio, Cayo Larson Cano to Ingris Navarijo both of Duck Run 1, Cayo Timothy McGough to Janie Samoila both of Bullet Tree Falls, Cayo Fredy Velasquez to Lusbinne Perez both of San Jose Succotz, Cayo Luis Dominguez to Alicia Leonardo both of Duck Run II, Cayo Jerman Martinez to Ruth Noemy Flores both of Santa Cruz, Stann Creek Urbanos Teck to Crescencia Patt both of Bullet Tree Falls, Cayo Elmer Patrick Patt to Miriam Raquel Pat both of Santa Familia, Cayo Edras Gamaliel Garcia to Marisol Elizabeth Orellano both of Burrell Boom, Belize Oscar Samayoa to Santos Garcia both of Armenia, Cayo Guillermo Antonio Choto to Hermelinda Esperanza Guzman both of Blackman Eddy, Cayo Sabino Isais Cayetano to Reina Florinda Zecena both of Valley of Peace, Cayo Ronaldo Gutierrez to Elda Pau both of Hope Creek, Stann Creek Miguel Angel Garcia to Maria Ines Portillo both of Middlesex, Stann Creek Nehemias Jesus Canto of San Antonio, Cayo to Lesbia Yadaina Morales of San Ignacio, Cayo Higinio Isaac Howe to Victoria Mai both of San Antonio, Cayo Jairo Hemer Babb to Rufina Erminia Santoya both of Chunox, Corozal
Deaths Mary Alberta Tebecca Wesby, 66 Ursula Martinez, 74 Avril Blanche Cleland, 76 Brent Orson Gabourel, 22 Osvaldo Edilberto Chable, 22 Kathleen Evadney Flowers, 76
Sunday, March 28, 2010
Sunday, March 28, 2010
The Belize Times
Bus Woes Forcing Cooperation…
A press release today informs that some 20 representatives of bus operators from all over Belize met this morning in Belize City to discuss the many mutual problems facing the bus transportation industry, and to examine recommendations for possible solutions. “The discussions analyzed several problems including the probable impact on the industry of the increase in the General Sales Tax currently proposed as a revenue enhancing measure by the Government of Belize, particularly in view of the fact that all tariffs and fares are strictly regulated by the Department of Transport and the economic and financial challenges posed
by increasing costs such as fuel and parts prices.” “The representatives also considered the lack of representation by operators on the Transport Board as well as in lobbying with the Department of Transport for the changes necessary to return the industry collectively to sustainability.” “In order to enhance their efforts at representation with the government and its regulatory bodies for the reliefs required to assist in helping to hold the line on costs and fares, the attendees agreed to a subsequent meeting next week Tuesday to discuss the requisite logistics for the formation of a repre-
sentative organization to be called the Belizean Bus Association.” The unusual coalition of normally ultra competitive and partisan politically divided bus operators is coming about because while capital, financing and operating costs have continued to spiral upwards over the past 6-7 years, rates and tariffs have been suppressed by regulation. Even the politically favoured operators acknowledge that their operations are not profitable and may be fast approaching the line of non-sustainability. The proposed increase in taxation and therefore costs through the imposition of a 2.5% hike in GST is going
to hit the industry’s operators hard, wiping out any possibility of marginal profitability. Although the industry is exempt from paying GST, it also cannot recoup its GST payments to its goods and service providers. The non-partisan effort is a sign of the times. The industry collectively once again finds itself too heavily indebted, capital resources too scarce, financing too expensive, and operational costs rising too fast while revenue from tariffs and fares are stagnant. The operators know that unless they can band together and lobby for the assistance they need to survive, they will all soon be out of business.
As I am currently writing this today, the species known as Homo sapiens, or humans, has entered its worst and most destructive era yet. Everything about humans has now negatively distinguished us from any other known or unknown species, past, present or to come. From the relentless pursuit of power vis-àvis the collective obsession with the monetary system, and all the way to the
compulsive need to become over-made Barbie dolls or macho nobodies, our species has effectively, and in essence, irrevocably charted our destruction, and furthermore, our invisibility. Now, none of what I have said above should anger or confuse anyone, for there have been those who have, in their way or time, have said what I am saying now. So, then, what exactly do I mean
when I speak of invisibility? Consider the following, if we can: The human species, from its humble dawn until now, has always had a fatal obsession with war. As our “brains” have evolved, so has our need to develop weapons and propaganda, which masks our understanding – and thereby our need, or lack thereof – to allow for one brief, unshakeable kernel of peace. The
result? We blind ourselves to the reasoning to see our fellows as they ought to be, and within that context, destroy, mutilate, and permanently disfigure our own fellows, supposedly in the name of “progressive peace” or uniting ourselves. But fools we are, and continue to be. Do we not yet see? Do we want to? Let me continue to demonstrate. We have a documented affinity with words. It is no secret we are more than equipped to understand each other when it comes to what we say. It is more than knowing our “greatest” leaders led with words? We’ve known, and continue to know, those great orators who, with mere, brief words, inspire within us to leadership or to destroy worlds. Are we still blinded, then? Do we not see it yet?! There never was black or white, Asian or Hispanic or indigenous, pagan or religious, or any damned classification we wish to impose on each other. It is within our minds alone. We can always demand respect, but is it extended back to our fellows, to each other? Whatever we demand, can we hope to receive it? Our human race enjoys comfort, but encourages apathy, even rewards it. It is no secret we have never seen another man’s, or woman’s life, beheld it, understood it as it was, or lifted a finger to care. We place our hopes, our dreams, our very lives and souls in the political and spiritual. We hold the unflappable belief that we will, one day, be free of what we believe is now holding us back. But we are now only hurtling headlong into what we know will happen – the permanent, irreversible invisibility of the human species. I can be perfectly honest and say that no one cares, or wants to care, about the pedantic ravings of a 21-year –old, young, able-bodied Black child-man. And why should they? Does it mean that if I choose to place myself and my time at the careless mercy of another, that I am wasting my time as well as theirs? This isn’t a suicide note, but a klaxon warning for those brave and willing enough to hear. Besides, I have no immediate inclination to commit suicide, nor do I intend to. Hear me well, everyone with the willingness to hear. You think Haiti & Chile are bad news? What will come is much, much worse. I am not another doom-and-gloom prophet, but we must, for the sake of our entire species, abandon our lusts and learn to value one another. People of the world, unite! OPEN YOUR EYES AND LOOK OUT UPON WHAT WE’VE DONE!!! [Signed] S. Rod
The Belize Times
Belize Times ol
Sunday, March 28, 2010
ñ a p s E n E
Políticas UDP, como siempre
Respuestas al presupuesto… Como se predijo, la dulce entrega del señor Barrow solamente puede enmascarar la realidad amarga del presupuesto por un largo tiempo, y juzgando por las respuestas entregadas, beliceños no quieren nada de ello. Accionistas con intereses turísticos ahora están interviniendo para advertirle al PM de que sus propuestos impuestos nuevos paralizarán la industria que se está debatiendo bajo el régimen UDP. Todo mundo sabe que la industria turística se encuentra en el peor estado jamás visto en la última década – que seguramente no es el mejor secreto guardado por la madre naturaleza. ¿Y qué de este nuevo alce de 25% de GST? Pues, recuerden la piedrecilla proverbial, que causa la reacción en cadena en el agua. El incremento en impuestos convierte la piedrecilla en una roca enorme y las olitas se convierten en oleajes tempestuosos. Y no solamente es la industria turística. Los programas de entrevistas empiezan a excitarse sobre los impuestos nuevos. Aún COLA intervino esta mañana para censurar el propuesto impuesto nuevo, diciendo de que acabará con la gente pobre de Belice e impactará severamente la media clase social. Planean una demonstración para el día antes de la presentación del presupuesto para pedirle al PM que reconsidere sus impuestos nuevos mortales. No que hará diferencia alguna, porque al señor Barrow no le importa. Con la excepción de la oposición que predijo el mal presupuesto y que lo denunció inmediatamente después, cuando las otras organizaciones dormían sin darse cuenta. Mientras dormían, las canciones de cuna de Barrow les hicieron soñar con los angelitos. ¡Oh la euforia orgásmica al escuchar al orador de lengua dorada decir que él pensaba cobrarnos $110M adicionales y que no nos preocupemos porque no pagaríamos mas – de hecho estaríamos absolutamente mejor. Pero cuando la mayoría de la gente se dio cuenta – deténgase - ¡Eso es una estupidez! No hace sentido alguno. Barrow ya se sonreía de oreja a oreja y confiado de que ya había engatusado a la gente beliceña una vez más. Así que para todos aquellos que claman para más consultas y un regreso a la mesa, no tenemos absolutamente consuelo alguno para ofrecer. No hay manera de detener estos impuestos asesinos. Cuando cenes con el diablo ten una cuchara de manga larga. Estoy seguro que muchos entenderán después del primero de abril, día de los inocentes – ¿ Entienden? Barrow nos toma de tontos…
modo. Sólo para demostrar un punto - mi negocio familiar fue asaltado a mano armada el viernes pasado. Ese reporte no se ha dado aún, una semana después. Me imagino que jamás formará parte de la estadística tampoco. Cuantos otros reportes no se han puesto en la estadística aún. Hemos estado diciendo esto hace mucho tiempo que la policía provee deliberadamente estadísticas falsas a la petición de sus jefes políticos. ¿Ahora lo creen? Sobrino del Procurador General El sobrino de un abogado destacado y del procurador general y ministro de relaciones internacionales es buscado por el EU por asaltos a mano armada y secuestro. Aparentemente se trata de una invasión a domicilio en Ohio donde el joven Elrington fue señalado. Según las noticias, la autoridad americana ha seguido la pista de Elrington a Belice donde supuestamente se refugió en el 2007. Dicen que tienen poca suerte de encontrarlo a través de sus familiares. Es un poco raro, porque todo mundo sabe en donde se encuentra el joven. No nos mal interpreten. No estamos culpando al procurador general Saint Sedi por cualquier cosa que su sobrino haya o no haya hecho. Solamente decimos que ese baluarte de justicia que propone ser, Sedi debe ser el primero de entregarle a las autoridades. Si eso no sucede ahora, entonces ¿qué esperanza tiene los Estados Unidos de pedirle al procurador general que extradite a su propio sobrino? La sangre tira, ¿o es simplemente una creencia artificial. Señor procurador general? BEL y PUC Desafortunadamente el jurista destacado Denys Barrow se ha puesto en el aprieto que llevo a la resolución la semana pasada, viernes. Hay un punto que absolutamente nadie ha negado- el hombre posee destrezas. Hasta la oposición lo ha dicho. Pero como todo, tienes que saber cuándo y cómo aplicar esas destrezas y cuando echarse atrás. Había tanta impresión de estar en contra en el caso del BEL y el PUC que casi parecía estar concluido antes de que se leyera la decisión. Denys Barrow se puso en el lugar de tener algo que hacer en el caso donde su hijo es un jugador muy importante de uno de los equipos. Eso no hace sentido en lo absoluto. Si se hubiese disculpado y la mismísima decisión se hubiese hecho, entonces no hay problema. Pero él no lo hizo. Y eso ha abierto otra caja de Pandora y otra gran vía de especulaciones adversas. La gente ya estaba enfadada cuando el Primer Ministro nombró a su hermano Denys a la Corte de Apelaciones. Pero él se escurrió en ese porque la oposición dijookay, te daremos una oportunidad para ver si eres imparcial. Pero entonces BAM, lo mismo que todo mundo decía. No somos catedráticos iluminados, pero se escuchó ese raro tintineo desde el viernes cuando se dio la decisión bajo la apariencia de estar en contra. ¿Será el campaneo del fin de la carrera sin mancha de un destacado jurista?
¡Policías asesinos… policías ladrones! Cuando algo no funciona y no ha estado funcionando por largo tiempo necesita repararse. Si los intentos de hacerlos funcionar fracasan, entonces se necesita reemplazarlo. Carlos Perdomo como el ministro de seguridad interna no ha hecho su trabajo por tanto tiempo. No hay persona alguna que lo contradiga (aún Carlos en sobriedad lo aceptaría). El departamento policial pasa por su peor momento jamás visto – crímenes violentos fuera de control, policías corruptos dentro del departamento, policías involucrados en matanza, corrupción interna y la desconfianza total del público en general. Eso no es política, es un hecho. No funciona. En las noticias esta semana un turista de avanzada edad reportó que la policía lo había asaltado y robado por razón ninguna. ¡Espera un momento, hermano! Tenía las contusiones para demostrarlo. Esto es una desgracia, así de simple. Me parece que una vez se aplicaba por No solamente eso, después de haber sido golpeado y robado de su dinero, terreno y había un proceso que se seguía. terminó siendo acusado por la mismísima policía. Me parece que también había un proceso Esto sigue de cerca una larga sarta da acusaciones y condenaciones en donde se podía adquirir terreno con irrefutables de la policía, todo mundo cree que lo que el turista dice es la justificación correcta y satisfaciendo todas verdad. Es sumamente creíble. Ya Nadie cree a la policía. Ha habido muchos las condiciones. ¿Se recuerdan eso llamado encubrimientos y mentiras. Cuando el departamento policial pierde la orden público? Alguien le hubiese dicho al confianza de la gente eso es algo terrible- posiblemente lo peor que pueda grandulón de Belmopán, pues. Al parecer pasar. Hasta que el primer ministro intervenga y quite a Carlos nada cambiará había un pedazo de tierra en Cotton Tree ( absolutamente. Las cosas simplemente se empeorarán. por decir más de mil acres) que era terreno particular. Se decía que el taiwanés a quien le pertenecía el terreno ya había fallecido. De todos modos, John No más datos por favor… Saldívar según parece manda una orden que sus compinches de Belmopán Este columnista le gustaría hacer una pueden ir a arrebatar un pedazo de terreno de la parcela, sin preocupaciones. petición oficial para que el departamento Pero más personas de lo que John esperaba arrebatan terrenos así que John policial deje inmediatamente de se echa para atrás y culpa a la misma persona que él puso a traer gente. Y publicar estadísticas falsas. Es un ahora muy de repente el gabinete da la orden de que cualquiera persona que insulto continuo de nuestros oficiales está dividiendo los terrenos debe detenerse inmediatamente y el gobierno que parecen estar inconscientes de la empezará el proceso de adquisición. Muy de repente se acuerdan del proceso realidad en que estamos. Decirles a legal de las cosas. Se le debe recordar a John Saldivar que él no es el ministro beliceños que el crimen está bajo es una de seguridad interna aún, y aún así, no podrá hacer ni romper la ley como le broma y no hay creyentes de cualquier convenga.
Sunday, March 28, 2010
The Belize Times
Briceno to Barrow – Lead or Leave!
(Continued from page 1) demanding that Belizeans fork out $42 million extra in GST alone while at the same time asking the big oil company to pay only a measly $1.8M. On the issue of crime, Deputy Party Leader Cordel Hyde lashed out at the government for reducing the budget in the Ministry of National Security at a time when the issue of crime and violence continues to hold Belizeans hostage. T he PUP representatives in the House chastised the Barrow administration for leaving over $40 million in funds for Government projects untapped. On this issue the Opposition Leader listed the many projects that for the third year in a row were not realized. As the Opposition pounded the government for their lack of competence and for not delivering on their 21 promises, they made the case that Belizeans were better off under the PUP than they are today. Deputy Party Leader Francis
Fonseca noted that the UDP Budget was causing Belizeans more pain and suffering. In typical style, the Barrow administration plans to pay for its lack of vision, incompetence and wastage “on the backs of the Belizean people.” Former Prime Minster the Rt. Honourable Said Musa reminded members of the House that when the UDP came to government in 2008, the economy registered economic growth, unemployment was at 8 percent and the performance of the government had kept spending down and was paying down the debt. In debating the nuts and bolts of the budget members of the Opposition pointed out that while they welcomed initiatives that will bring relief to the 143,000 poor Belizeans, the petty offerings in the budget did not go nearly far enough to help the many who are in need. With respect to the rural poor the Hon. Florencio Marin talked about the people from the villages whose lands are being taken away. He called on the government
to provide the rural communities with proper roads, water and other services. In his opinion, and realistically in the opinion of the Belizean people, the Barrow administration is failing to deliver to the rural communities. As the six members of the Opposition debated, the response from the government was inadequate. None of the speakers who stood up to defend the budget were able to explain or defend the imposition of taxes on Belizean. When the Party Leader called out the UDP on their lack of competence no UDP member was able to dispute it. When Deputy Party Leader Cordel Hyde took on the government on its poor response to crime and cutting the budget on National Security, there was no challenge. UDP Speaker after UDP speaker got up and spoke as if they were a party not in government, but in opposition. In his response to the Leader of the Opposition, John Saldivar screamed into the microphone about PUP television
commercials and talked on and on about the past PUP administration. This allowed for the Hon. Said Musa to defend the record of the past PUP administration. Mr. Musa reminded the Speaker that under the PUP the economy grew in the 10 years; this he said in spite of the 4 hurricanes and the global crisis which had already occurred. The Budget Debate in 2010 will go down in history as one where an opposition of six was able to completely destroy the credibility of a government with 25 members. At no time during the course of the day did the UDP succeed in refuting a single fact put forward by the PUP. And as the PUP representatives hammered away at the Barrow Budget, calling it a tax bill, the galleries in the house exploded into applause in support of the Opposition. As he wound down his remarks the leader of the opposition called out the Prime Minster saying: “it is time for the UDP to lead or leave. We on this side say, it is time for the People’s United Party.”
BCCI Reacts to Barrow’s Bogus Budget
(Continued from page 1)
50% of members who replied reported the past year; 45% of the members that they had to reduce staff and who replied stated that they have a whopping 95% of members who had to downsize over the past year; replied confirmed that the cost of
Shootout in the City
(Continued from page 1) were about to resume classes after breaktime. As it turned out, two robbers rode up on separate bicycles and pounced on Accents Store and a businessman who had just completed paying a bill inside the store. But when one of the gunmen tried to produce his weapon, it discharged and the bullet wounded him in the leg. He was still able to flee the scene and police continue to look for him. The other gunslinger, a 17 year
old youth was also bad-lucked as he too was shot. He was pursued by both the man he had just jacked inside the store as well as by police officers who were on foot patrol on Queen Street and got word of the robbery in progress. According to reports reaching the Belize Times, during the short chase shots were exchanged between the robber and those chasing him. When he was searched where he fell, Police recovered over a thousand dollars from his pants. A .38 revolver
monumental increase in taxes. Instead, the UDP as is their modus operandi has doing business and the cost of living resorted to blaming the global crisis, blaming the past administration and increased in the past year.” The Government, even in its debate launching personal attacks against the on Thursday, was not able to justify the Opposition. which they believe he used to rob the store and customer was found a few feet from him on the street. His bicycle was further down in front of the store where he dropped it after the customer shot him in one of his legs. Just outside the store another bicycle was parked, where his partner in crime fled and left it. The barrage of shots rang out in the busy Thursday morning bustle near the Swing Bridge and soon a crowd had gathered to see what was happening. And soon it was discovered that two innocent passers-by, 24 year old Luis Caceres and 22 year old Natasha Beaton
were wounded in the crossfire. Caceres is recuperating in the KHMH with a bullet wound in the stomach while Beaton, who was running to try to avoid getting shot, was grazed on her right arm near the elbow. The stir on the busy North Front Street artery caused the school to close its doors for the afternoon because it left many of the students who witnessed it in shock. While Police were lucky to have been on the scene to apprehend one of the robbers the other remains at large, wounded, and possibly still armed and dangerous.
The Belize Times
Sunday, March 28, 2010