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Sunday, November 11, 2012

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THE BELIZE TIMES

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SUNDAY November 11, 2012

www.facebook/Belize Times

Issue No. 4821

The Good Will Suffer...

Saldivar’s folly Saldivar should have instead called out Prime Minister Barrow and his failed economic policies, and laid out his own economic plan. Isn’t he the most brilliant economist the UDP has in Cabinet after all?

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Reid Between the Lines: Belizeans will have to careful as to how much liberty they will surrender for a promise of security. With this government’s propensity to victimize and overstep their bounds, it is quite likely that many innocent citizens will be trampled and caught up in this dragnet of desperation.

Belize City, November 7, 2012 The Ministry of National Security has been forced to backtrack a bit on the rolling out of “new”, controversial anticrime measures which were all but ready for urgent implementation. On Thursday November 1st, Minister of National Security John Saldivar announced that the Police have begun to exercise authority which grants their officers powers to raid homes and communities without the use of search warrants, and the detention of citizens for as long as they deem necessary.

Page 13 Maya Leaders accuse U.S. Capital/GOB of inciting ethnic division

Pageon 6 page 4 Continued

The Police will have unresticted authority to search & arrest

Will UDP derail Public Accounts Committee? Chamber of Commerce urges 4 UDP Reps to attend meetings!

Hon. Erwin Contreras

Hon. Patrick Faber

The Preying

Pastor?

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Baptist Pastor accused of having intercourse with 11 yr. old

FOLLOW US!

Hon. Michael Finnegan

The Belize Chamber of Commerce and Industry has written to Prime Minister Dean Barrow urging him “to ensure” that the four UDP representatives attend the Public Accounts Committee (PAC) meeting to be held on Monday, November 12th 2012.

Cristina Coc, the spokesperson for the Maya Leaders Association, said U.S. Capital has engaged in wily tactics such as bribery and misinformation.

on the social media

Baptist Pastor Julio Cesar Garcia

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THE BELIZE TIMES

Anthropologist/Historian Dr. Joseph Palacio writes GOB/US Capital on behalf of Barranco From: Concerned Residents of Barranco To: Mr. M. Alegria, Department of the Environment and US Capital Energy Representative Mr. A. King Statement re the EIA Consultation for October 25, 2012. On behalf of our village Barranco, we take this opportunity to present this short statement to the EIA consultation held at Sunday Wood October 25, 2012. Our village brings to this consultation some unique characteristics that highlight Barranco as one of the frontline communities in the current exploration for fossil energy in the Toledo District. It is the oldest of the adjoining villages, having been founded more than 150 years ago. It is a Garifuna com-

munity. The Garifuna people share an indigenous origin to the larger Central American-Caribbean subregion. More especially, in the case of Barranco, the British found the Garifuna people here when they first placed their survey lines in this area in 1892. It is the last coastal village in southern Belize. It is one of the buffer communities to the Sarstoon/Temash National Park that looks forward to the legitimate and sustainable exploitation of the Park’s resources. Finally, like the other frontline communities, it is economically depressed and desperately seeks all opportunities for the sustainable exploitation of our natural resources for the benefit of our current population and generations to come. More than the other neighbouring communities, we in Barranco have

UB Students cautions about Mass Tourism Development Dear Editor, I write to you as a concerned citizen who has seen and experienced the beauty of our jewel and what it has to offer, particularly in terms of its natural resources. These resources however are not being given priority and many times are blatantly ignored and exploited. I speak specifically of the major tourism projects that are being constructed throughout our country - everywhere from Placencia to San Pedro – especially the San Pedro South Beach Project. Many would view this as a show of economic growth, but others like myself, wonder what the environmental implications are for our country. The South Beach Project promises a massive tourism construction that will include hotels, nightclubs, spas and world-class shopping malls. Many individuals and organizations however, have shown concerns and misgivings about the project. Environmentally, many organizations have a problem with the location, as well as the magnitude of the project. Specifically, they fear the proximity of the project to Hol Chan Marine Reserve (San Pedro Sun, 2008). The Hol Chan marine reserve encompasses more than 21 square miles of ecologically linked coastal mangrove swamp, sea grass meadows and coral reef habitats and is home to a minimum of 160 species of fish, an important spiny lobster nursery, forty kinds of coral, five species of sponge, two sea grass vari-

eties, three types of sea turtles and three species of marine mammals (Hol Chan, 2008). Opponents of the South Beach Project assert that The Hol Chan Marine Reserve is a resource of great economic and ecological value particularly to Ambergris Caye. They further emphasize that Hol Chan is not only one of the oldest sites in San Pedro, but also the single most visited site in Belize. Environmentalists argue that the different activities that are necessary to complete the South Beach Project are just too close to Hol Chan and will negatively affect the different species, including the flora and the fauna that make up Hol Chan (MAP, 2009). In addition to the size and location of the project, other environmental concerns include the removal of mangrove and extensive excavation and dredging that will be required for the construction of South Beach Belize. Environmentalists fear that clearing the mangrove will result in the migration or extinction of many species. This is so because many marine species rely on mangroves and sea grass for the feeding and protection of their young. Many bird and reptile species also feed and nest among these mangroves. The required dredging for the project will also leave sediments in Continued on page 18

Sunday, November 11, 2012

been at the forefront of oil exploration, having been the primary camp site for the most recent exploration activities that started in 2011 and went on for some months. About five years earlier we had also been the main camp for a previous effort at oil exploration. We bring to this EIA consultation the mixed results of the impact of oil exploration in our midst. While we appreciated the opportunities for jobs that the company offered, we also registered our total dissatisfaction with the harmful impact on our village and its infrastructure. They include: 1. Extensive damages to our streets and wharf 2. Overburden of our garbage facilities 3. Extensive noise and dust pollution from the helicopter traffic 4. Locating the helipad at an inconvenient spot in the village, where pedestrians walk, including school children coming and going to school. 5. Bringing in scores of workers, seriously affecting the social and cultural patterns of life within a small community. What most displeases us is that we addressed these impacts by letter and through meetings with company representatives. Unfortunately, the response was not in proportion to the seriousness of the problems. Rather, until they broke camp and left the village,

Young Belizean defends Belize Coalition for Justice Sir: Please kindly publish this important letter in your next available edition. My name is Alton Fitzroy Humes, and until fairly recently, I was all too happy to ignore the national spotlight, to live my life as I chose to. But since the birth of the Belize Coalition for Justice (BCJ) some weeks ago – of which I am now and forever a proud member – I am no longer choosing the silence. I’m only 23 years old, soon to be 24, so my life experiences thus far are limited. But when I was asked by the president of the Citizens Organized for Liberty through Action (COLA), Mr. Geovannie Brackett, to go to San Ignacio as part of a meeting of a delegation of activists, I had little idea how much the results of said conference would inflame, inspire and astound me to no end. Ever since the BCJ was launched, we’ve made it our mission to serve, inform and give light on national issues, and with it, hope to our felContinued on page 18

the company continued its high-handed contempt of our people, leaving behind such disservice, as the deteriorated conditions of our streets and wharf. These actions together with the attitude of the oil company form the background to our response to the current EIA consultation. We find ourselves unable to respond to the details of this EIA report. First of all, we became aware of it a little less than two weeks ago. Secondly, it is a highly technical document that would have to be explained to us so we could understand it fully to be able to respond. Unfortunately, we are sensing the same kind of interaction that we in Barranco had with the previous phases of oil exploration, namely, a feeling that the oil company can do whatever they want within our community and that they do not have to account to the community nor have the courtesy to respond when reasonable complaints are made to them. In conclusion, we are unable to respond to this EIA report not from any fault of ourselves. We are asking that the responsible arms of our government take the initiative to explain to us the details of this EIA report. We feel that as public officers – paid from our hard-earned taxes – they should come to our community and guide us through the technical procedures mentioned in this report. Finally, we request that the company conduct an objective assessment of the overall social and economic impact of their previous stints in our village as a way of understanding what could take place when large scale drilling starts within the vicinity of our villages in the Toledo District. We will be looking forward to a response from our public officers and the oil company to these serious concerns of ours. Thanks very much, which translates in our language, as Seremei. Signature Joseph O. Palacio on behalf of the Concerned Residents of Barranco October 31, 2012.

THE BELIZE TIMES serving Belize since 1957 as the longest continous newspaper. Founder: Rt. Hon. George Cadle Price, People’s United Party Leader Emeritus

EDITOR

Alberto Vellos LAYOUT/GRAPHIC ARTIST

Chris Williams Published By The Belize Times Press Ltd. Tel: 671-8385 #3 Queen Street P.O. BOX 506 Belize City, Belize Email: belizetimesadvertisement@yahoo.com

editortimes@yahoo.com


Sunday, November 11, 2012

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THE BELIZE TIMES

No Referendum!!! November 6, 2012 “Watsup” with Prime Minister Dean Barrow and his Foreign Minister, an echo chamber, Sedi Elrington, on these new OAS/Guatemalan shenanigans? Is it that the UDP wants to solidify Sedi’s position on the “invisible border” so that Belize, or parts of it, could possibly become the thirteenth province of Guatemala? Ironically, these two may have been in the group of young upstarts who protested against Webster’s Thirteen Proposals and the Heads of Agreement that triggered violent demonstrations at the time. As it now appears, it is Guatemala that is truly directing our foreign and defence policies, subsequently usurping our national sovereignty and in accordance with Article 13 of the Webster proposals. The Guatemalans are clearly dictating to our government that the Belize Defence Force must use rubber bullets to defend Belize against Guate-

malan incursions and only live rounds when their lives are threatened. We understand that to his credit, this was much to the chagrin of the Minister of National Security who now has a demoralized BDF on his hands. The government of Belize also recently agreed to compensate the family of a Guatemalan campesino, who was caught panning for gold seven miles inside Belizean territory, and so was killed by a BDF soldier who fired in self defence after he was attacked by this Guatemalan trespasser. The Barrow government agreed with the Guatemalan authorities and the not-so-credible, Organization of American States (OAS) that it was a “border incident”. At this rate then, that border may soon extend to the Caribbean Sea. The Guatemalans threatened to expel our Ambassador and to close its border. We understand that it was our Ambassador to Guatemala, who advised Barrow to pay the handsome

compensation, to prevent Guatemala from acting so as to maintain his unusual lifestyle. The blame was being put on Sedi, but the Prime Minister took the blame at a government/business circus in Belize City last week. The tables had turned as HE was sounding more like Sedi’s echo. He took the responsibility with bombast. The mighty had spoken! But this could have well been intended to change the news headline of the day that the IMF is in town. Have you ever seen clips on US TV when two welldressed American military officers walk towards a home to deliver bad news to the family about their loved one serving in a war? Imagine the visit of the IMF. Ironically, this is beginning to look like a sellout to Guatemala by the UDP, although Mr. Barrow, like a fox, will call it democracy. Let the people decide in the referendum whether or not we will take the Guatemalan claim to Belize to the International Court of Justice.

This is not necessary. We decided not to in September of 1981. A United Nations resolution in 1981, and numerous legal opinions after that, gives recognition to Belize as a clearly defined State with its boundaries enshrined in the Constitution of Belize. Fortunately for Belize, with his much reduced majority in the legislature, Mr. Barrow can no longer tamper with our Constitution to appease his new found lovers in Guatemala. Mr. Barrow betrayed the supporters of his party and the rest of the people of Belize. Those old and deceased UnionJack-NIP Belizeans-or British Hondurans, must be turning in the graves. Dead members of the Loyal and Patriotic Order of the Baymen must be rattling their bones. We no wah no Guatemala! We no wah no Guatemala! We no wah no Guatemala, but we want our country free! Come on! Let’s sing it like old times!

Baby Friendly No More!

Health Minister silent despite childbirth malpractice cases Orange Walk Town, November 5, 2012 Shortly after taking office in 2008, in an attempt to blow steam on his ego and build false credibility, Minister of Health Pablo Marin began to ordain public hospitals as “baby-friendly”. Marin, who is an electrician by trade in his hometown Corozal Town, knew he was piggy-backing on the successes of the former PUP administration’s policies regulating maternal health and he consumed as much media attention as possible. Over the years, something terrible has been occurring. Under Marin’s leadership, key policies have gone unmonitored and cases of malpractice at public hospitals have increased. In some cases, the results have been tragic as mothers have claimed serious

Sally Coh recounts the terror she experienced at the Northern Regional Hospital. (Pic

negligence causing child deaths. This week, as a young mother, the fourth in the last two months, stepped out to claim outrageous neglect, Minister Marin has chosen to remain in hiding, and no one from the Ministry of Health has stepped up to explain why public hospitals are becoming “baby unfriendly”. This week the case of Sally Coh came to light. Sally, a 17 year old first-time mother, was admitted at the Northern Regional Hospital on October 14th. Following an examination, she was told that her Alicia Pott and her husband have sought legal advice cervix had only in an effort to seek justice

Courtesy CTV-3 News)

nurse was pushing on top of me so the baby could come out. I was telling them to operate on me, but they said no and insisted that I continue. That’s how it was for more than two hours. I believe they hurt my baby when they pushed him in and I was telling them that they were hurting me, but they paid no attention,” recounted Sally to CTV-3 News in Orange Walk. The 17 year old mother’s case is extremely disturbing. The baby began suffering seizures right after birth and had to be rushed to Belize City’s Karl Heusner Memorial Hospital for treatment. Doctors now tell the family that the baby has an injury on his head, and that it could affect his physical and neurological abilities. Continued on page 19

dilated 3 centimeters and a few hours later, by 11:30pm, it had dilated to 10 centimeters. Everything seemed to be going on schedule until she went into labour. Sally said she felt too much pain and despite her efforts, she was not able to deliver the child. After a few tries, the nurse told her that the baby’s head was on its way out, but at the same time they told her that her skin was turning purple and they had to abort the delivery. She said the nurses began pushing the baby back inside her. “They told me I was turning purple and said I couldn’t go anymore. That’s when she began pushing my baby’s head inside me and they hurt Maria Chable relived her worst nightmare at the him. The tied something Northern Regional Hospital. (Pic Courtesy CTV-3 on my stomach and a News)


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THE BELIZE TIMES

Sunday, November 11, 2012

PUP Belmopan

holds “Roadmap to Victory” workshop

PUP Leader Hon. Francis Fonseca addresses workshop participants

PUP Leader Hon. Francis Fonseca welcomes Dr. Naresh Singh, Executive Director of CARILED, to Independence Hall

Hon. Francis & Chairman of Belmopan PUP Executive, Paul Castillo

City of Belmopan, November 5th, 2012 The Belmopan Constituency Committee held its “Roadmap to Victory” workshop on Sunday, 4th November 2012 in the City of Belmopan. The thirty (30) participants met to formulate a Strategic Action Plan which will guide the work of the Committee and its Sub-Committees in preparation for Municipal and General Elections. The Committee defined four major objectives to work upon, namely: 1. A Unified, Focused and Well-defined Organizational Structure 2. A Human Resource Mobilization Strategy 3. A Financial Resource Mobilization Strategy 4. A Monitoring and Evaluation Mechanism Mr. Paul Castillo, Chairman of the Belmopan Constituency, highlighted the importance of the workshop in mapping the way forward for the Belmopan Committee. The keynote address was delivered by the Party Leader Hon. Francis Fonseca who discussed the challenges being faced by Belizeans under the UDP Administration and suggested ways to achieve victory in the Belmopan Constituency. Presentations were also done by senior party supporters on the social and economic conditions that plague the country. The “Road-map to Victory” workshop was a success as the Belmopan Committee was able to develop comprehensive strategies on the way forward.

Hon. Francis discusses CARILED’s small and medium enterprise project with Belize City Mayor Darrel Bradley & Dr. Singh


Sunday, November 11, 2012

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THE BELIZE TIMES

Saldivar’s folly

rom his behaviour and speech, Prime Minister Dean Barrow appeared fatigued and a bit exasperated but not humbled at last week Thursday’s event with the business community. The PM sounded frustrated, as a man who has tried everything but just can’t seem to make it work. As a result his “economic” forum turned out some new faces, but with the same old failed ideas. It was long-winded, with plenty of rhetoric but short on economic solutions. This is why Barrow had to use that platform to placate the equally-frustrated business community somewhat, with the Minister of National Security John Saldivar’s announcement of heavy-handed measures to fight the worsening crime scourge. Saldivar is an ambitious politician, and we believe an aspirant for leader of the UDP when Barrow exits the scene within the next three to four years. This is why he should be aware of the minefield he stepped unto when he took on the job. He also should know that being blinded by Barrow could be fatal. As a three-term Area Representative Saldivar must have, by now, come across the Crimes Commission Report, the Crooks Report, the Gayle Report, and realised that what he is dealing with is a deep-rooted complex issue. Crime is a symptom of spiritual, social and economic decay. Saldivar should know that there is no quick fix or shortcut to a solution. As a self-proclaimed economist, Saldivar should also know that a country’s crime level is a direct reflection of the economy. Saldivar chose politics. He used Barrow’s forum to play up to the mercantile class who is so frustrated at the state of the economy and crime and they applauded the new measure which threatens to erode people’s rights and freedoms. Saldivar’s suggestion is a dangerous one, which we have heard before. It has all the elements of “Preventative” Detention which just two years ago the Prime Minister had put “in the refrigerator”. The new measure of designating areas as “crime ridden”, therefore allowing the Police to raid and cordon areas, and detain persons for “as long as is necessary” is terrible, just frightening considering the reputation of the Police under the UDP. Saldivar should have instead called out Prime Minister Barrow and his failed economic policies, and laid out his own economic plan. Isn’t he the most brilliant economist the UDP has in Cabinet after all? Saldivar’s rescue plan should have contained new policies to lower the interest rates at the banks, outlawing compounding interest which is wiping out the middle class, a mortgage rescue plan to save struggling homeowners, attracting new investments, and publicly scolding the PM for paying gang members with taxpayers’ money. Saldivar had a chance to poise himself as a different politician. He needed to say that his colleague and contender, Minister of Education Patrick Faber, would finally get it right and make it mandatory for all Belizeans under 18 years old to obtain an education and be in school. He could have exposed the others and told Boots to stop courting the gangs, and called on Barrow, Faber, Vega, King, Sedi, Longsworth and Boots to end the culture of gang and crime in their constituencies, Saldivar could have demonstrated his true measure. Instead he chose to play the role of Heinrich Himmler for Barrow. Truly, Belize is a nation in trouble, deep trouble.

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THE BELIZE TIMES

The Good Will Suffer Continued from page 1 Saldivar said the measures, which have all the elements of the twice-rejected preventative detention draconian idea but this time freshly-packaged, would take “immediate effect”. Saldivar claimed last week that the Police had already been deployed and were already taking action under the newly enforced authority, but this week the Police command sang a different tune when it was revealed that they needed the approval of the defunct Crime Control Commission. On Wednesday, the Commission Chairman Michael Young dusted himself off and gathered as many members of the Commission as he could to meet and approve the Ministry of National Security’s plan. When it was put to vote, only the Bar Association representative abstained, since they had not been given time to consult properly. With the Commission’s green light, the Police have now moved to declare as many as five areas in Southside Belize City as “crime ridden”. The BELIZE TIMES understands all five areas are in the Lake Independence area, mostly along the Mahogany Street area and behind the C.B. Hyde Building. But what exactly are the Police authorized to do? In the words of the Minister of Police, “the police and B.D.F. have the power to search any and all houses in the area without the need for a warrant. This declaration will also allow the police and the B.D.F. to restrict movement in and out of these areas. These areas will be cordoned off and every person entering and exiting the area will be stopped and searched and a systematic house by house search of these areas will be done with immediate effect”. There is more. Saldivar declared that preventative measures will also be taken. Persons of interest to Police “will be detained and held for questioning as often and as long as it takes”, he said. As for young men who are detained, a Guantanamo-like base will be placed in a mountainous area of the Cayo District where they will be taken and “disciplined” by Belize Defense Force personnel. The new measures propose the very same heavy-handedness that was

Liquor License Notice Notice is hereby given that We-Ten Chang is applying for a Shop Liquor License to be operated at “J&C Shop”, Belize City, under the Liquor Licensing Ordinance Revised Edition 1980.

found in Constitutional amendments 6 and 8. After massive public outcry against those proposed changes, the Prime Minister said that it was his final attempt to pursue the measures, and that he was putting them “in the refrigerator”. This time, however, the Barrow Administration isn’t seeking constitutional reform, but instead says the laws already empower the security forces. The UDP Government has a bad reputation for being chancy and vindictive. It is only a matter of time before they begin using this extreme measure to hold down outspoken members of society and anyone who dares to challenge their authority. The good will suffer for the bad.

Sunday, November 11, 2012

The Preying Pastor?

City of Belmopan, November 7, 2012 A Baptist Church Pastor in the village of Frank’s Eddy, Cayo District, has been criminally charged after an 11 year old has accused him of having sexual intercourse with her. The child, accompanied by her mother, went to the Belmopan Police Station and reported that 46 year old Honduran national Pastor Julio Cesar Garcia had sexual intercourse with her on October 28 at 4:00pm inside the church. The minor added that once more on November 1st at 6:00pm the same pastor had sexual intercourse with her this time inside his house. The child’s mother, who is a senior member of the Church, said that the child was targeted when she went to deliver a package to the pastor.

A medical examination on the minor revealed that she has been carnally known. Police detained Julio Cesar Garcia, and charged him with Two Counts of Unlawful Carnal Knowledge. But this is only the tip of Garcia’s troubles. At least two other young females have come out claiming they were also sexually assaulted by the pastor. They say he has tried to kiss them while they were inside the church. Reports are that the pastor’s wife had found a list containing the names of five girls; three of them have claimed assault. The wife has denied the report. Garcia appeared before Magistrate Aretha Ford on Wednesday, November 7. No plea was taken since the offence is an indictable one. He was remanded to prison until January 25, 2013.


Sunday, November 11, 2012

THE BELIZE TIMES

Humor

in UDP Politics! The following matters were discussed in Cabinet: A report on the Economic Summit was tabled by Penner on behalf of his constituency but particularly the Mennonite community. The report read like this: “we heard nothing about rice or corn, nothing about chicken or feed. If asked what we thought of the summit, we can best respond that you are attacking the pig from the wrong end”. ……………………….. Saldivar reported that he felt like the Prime Minister after last week’s press conference. When asked why, he replied…“I just felt out of ideas, broken, incompetent, surrounded by idiots and my head was spinning”. ……………………….. Castro suggested to Barrow that to win over Belizeans he needs to start thinking, acting and looking like Obama. When Barrow asked if he could choose not to grow hair, Saldivar whispered, “Don’t worry about the hair, grow a heart!” ……………………….. In other related matters: A Cabinet minister reported that his daughter was asked at school for homework what suggestion can she

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give to the Barrow Administration to help solve crime. She responded, “we will need ten suggestions Miss”. When asked why, she responded, “because the PM said they get it wrong 9 out of 10 times”. ……………………….. The City Manager of the Belize City Council was asked how come the Mayor’s Bond had gone from $20m to $18m. How come $2m went missing? After a little delay she said, “fees, legal fees”. ……………………….. Philloughby said he has “expert advice” for the Mayor, saying he should stop going on television making wild projections about the Municipal Bond. When the Mayor asked why, Philloughby replied, “because ih mek you look silly bad…trust me…I dah wah expert inna dah area”. ……………………….. Hutchinson was summoned to Cabinet to answer why he hasn’t been campaigning as caretaker in the Belize Rural Central area. In response he said he hasn’t because “no money no deh”. ……………………….. In the fight for leadership Gapi and Faber met to discuss a way for ward so as not to expose the UDP party to take sides. No racial jokes, they agreed. No spending on booze, liquor and weed, and definitely, absolutely no name calling. But as soon as they signed a special document and the ink dried, Gapi texted a supporter calling Faber a “spoilt brat”. Faber also text a voter calling Gapi a “two-faced counterbandista”.


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THE BELIZE TIMES

Sunday, November 11, 2012

Volleyball nationals this weekend BELIZE'S #1 SPORTS PAGE

SCA team

Belize City, November 2, 2012 St. Catherine’s Academy girls will defend their championship title against the Southern finalists, the Ecumenical College girls, when the high school female volleyball championships kicks off at the University of Belize Jaguar auditorium n Belmopan on Friday and Saturday, November 9-10.

Belize district women’s football competition

Queen’s Square girls

Queen Square girls & Salvation Army boys lead primary schools football Belize City, November 6, 2012 The Queen Square Anglican girls and the Salvation Army School boys are leading the Belize City primary school football competition. The Unity Presbyterian School boys posted their 3rd win when the competition continued at the MCC grounds on Wednesday, November 7. July Barrientos scored 2 goals as he led the Unity Presbyterian boys to their 4-0 win over the Calvary Temple School boys.

Salvation Army boys lead 5-0

The winner will then advance to the finals and will compete against the winner of Western champions, Belmopan Comprehensive, versus northern champions, Muffles College girls. The SCA repeated for the 5th time as the Central Secondary Schools volleyball champs by overcoming undefeated Wesley College girls 3-0 in the finals at the Belize Elementary School auditorium last Friday evening, November 2. The 1st set went 25-9, 2nd set went 25-5, and 3rd set was 25-5. In the male competition, the Toledo Community College boys will clash with the Belize City champs, the St. John’s College boys at the volleyball nationals in Belmopan this coming weekend. The winner will advance to the finals and will face the winner of the Mopan Technical High versus Escuela Secundaria Tecnica Mexico game. This is the second year the SJC boys are Central Secondary Schools volleyball champs. This year, they defeated the Anglican Cathedral College boys 3-1 in the finals last Friday night, November 2. The game went 1st set 25-16; 2nd set: 25-23; 3rd set 25-17; and 4th set 25-10.

The Salvation Army boys got the easy bye to their 5th win when the St Mary’s Anglican School boys were a no show for their scheduled match Tuesday afternoon. Marvin Martinez was credited with 3 goals as he launched a shot from the centerfield line that bounced into the net. He now leads the tournament with 10 goals. The Holy Redeemer RC School girls and boys each enjoyed wins against the Belize Elementary School

Hattieville Heats contain Caye Caulker Girlz, 3-3 Muslim’s Tyrique Ciego scored a goal

girls and boys on Tuesday. Jada Myvette scored the winning goal as she led the Holy Redeemer girls to their 3rd win: 1-0 over the BES girls. BES’ Kim Chee scored first when he converted a penalty to give the BES boys a 1-0 lead at the halftime break, but in the 2nd half, Herman Card equalized the scored 1-1 for Holy Redeemer and Clayshaun Lewis scored a 2nd winning goal for the 2-1 win. Other matches: BES girls vs. Muslim Community 0-0 Queen Square Anglican girls vs. St Martin De Porres RC School – 1-0 Goal by Jada David Muslim Community Boys vs. BES boys – 1-0 Goal by Tyrique Ciego Muslim Community girls vs. St. Martin De Porres School 1-0 Goal by Nicoly Shield St. John Vianney boys vs. St. Ignatius RC – 4-0 Goals by Kenroy Linares(2), Orlando Velasquez (2)

Caye Caulker, October 28, 2012 The Hattieville Heats put up a tough fight to deny the Caye Caulker Girlz a 2nd win of the Belize district women’s football competition. The Heats were on the losing end, as the score was 2-3, all the way to the 88th minute, but Deandra Coote scored in the 89th, for a 3-3 draw and upset at the Caye Caulker field on Sunday, November 4. Continued on page 9

Wendy Castellanos defends


Sunday, November 11, 2012

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THE BELIZE TIMES

Team Bismark leads table tennis competition each, and Moses Babb got rid of Johann Ketz: 3-0. Team Ping Pang outlasted Team Tallawah 5-3. Yasser Musa clipped Robert Peyrefitte 3-2 and spanked Gian Lisbey 3-1, while Billy Musa Jr put down Peyrefitte, Lisbey and Harim Ochaeta: 3-0. Ochaeta had swatted Mishek Musa and Yasser Musa each: 3-1 while Gian Lisbey outlasted Mishek Musa 3-2. Other matches: SJC Snipers vs. Turds – 5-0

BELIZE'S #1 SPORTS PAGE

Belize City, November 3, 2012 Team Bismark is leading the Brothers Habet team table tennis tournament 2nd division with 16 pts from 8 wins, while Team Ping pang and Team Tallawah each have 14pts from 7 wins. When the competition continued at the Belize Elementary School auditorium on Saturday, November 3, Team Bismark defeated the SJC Strikers 5-0 when Aaron Stock beat Ashley Weller and Cody August: 3-0 each, Matthew Usher drowned Ashley Weller and Johann Ketz: 3-0

Yasser Musa in action

Racqueteers vs. Team Phoenix – 5-4 Garage 2nd Division SJC Lightspeed – 5-4 Rivero’s Welders vs. Garage 1st Division – 5-3

Smart Mundialito competition

Bombers trample on Jane Usher, 3-0 Belize City, November 3, 2012 The undefeated Brown Bombers have qualified to the Smart Mundialito under-15 football playoffs, following their 5th victory in the sixth week of tournament. The Brown Bombers defeated Jane Usher Blvd 3-0, to garner 16pts in the competition. The first half was scoreless, early in the 2nd, the goals started pouring in. Shemar Thompson blasted in the first goal, followed by Sherwin Requeña. Thompson

added a 3rd goal before the long whistle. Requeña leads the tournament as the top goal-scorer with 6 goals. Other games: Unity Rangers vs. Young Stars – 4-0 Goals by Tyrel Thomas, Tyreque Ciego (2), July Barrientos Third World vs. City Boys Juniors – Third World win by default Hattieville United Youth Sports Club vs. Ladyville Japan – 0-0 St. John Vianney vs. Lady Jaguars – St. John Vianney win by default

Brown Bombers advances to the playoffs

National Inter-District 1st Division Football competition

Brown Bombers defeat Progresso FC, 1-0 Belize City, November 3, 2012 The Brown Bombers won 1-0 over Progresso FC when the playoffs of the national inter-district first division football competition got underway at the MCC grounds on Saturday, November 3. Darrell Myvette was the first to connect a goal with a header from a corner kick by Edon Rowley in the 4th minute. Dennis Charley and Wilfredo Lino led Progresso’s furious counterattacks but they made little impression on the Bombers’ defense. The Bombers sought to increase their lead in the second half, but the Progresso defenders refused to concede another goal, the long whistle sounded to a 1-0 win for the Bombers. Other matches: Benguche vs. Estrellas – 6-2 Goals by Darrol Lambey, Tito Flores, Darwin Castilo (2), Carlos Lino, Raymond Ramos (2), Christopher Burke San Antonio vs. Madrid FC –

Brown Bombers

2-1

Goals by Eder Diaz, Russell Casanova, Darnel Mossiah Independence Scorpions vs. Santa Elena Synergy – 6-2 Goals by Devaugn Thompson (2), Ever Centeno, Devaugn Thompson, Jose Melendez, Calbert Neal, Eduardo Oliva, Elmer Godoy Upcoming Games:

Progresso FC vs. Bombers, Sunday, November 11, People’s Stadium Santa Elena Synergy vs. Scorpions, Sunday, November 11, Norman Boaster Stadium San Antonio vs. Madrid FC, Isidoro Beaton Stadium, Belmopan Estrellas vs. Benguche, Toledo Union Field, Punta Gorda Town

Hattieville Heats contain Caye Caulker Girlz, 3-3 Continued from page 8 The Heats’ Jersha Estrada scored the Hattieville girls’ first goal. Caye Caulker’s Yasuri Juarez avenged that insult with the equalizer, much to goalie Khadijah Marin’s embarrassment. Estrada soon responded with a 2nd goal, giving the Heats a 2-1 lead at the break. In the 2nd half, rain poured down but it didn’t stop the reggae jam. The Caye Caulker Girlz’ Ruth Pineda equalised for to make it 2-2. Shortly after, Samantha Galeano escaped the marking of Felicia Gillett and Deandra Coote to score their 3rd goal. Regulation time was almost over, when Goalie Ramirez failed to stop a shot from Estrada that slipped right through her legs, and Deandra Coote followed though to blast the ball into the net for the 3-3 draw at the long whistle. In the other weekend match between the Millenium Girls and the Caye Caulker Island Stars, the rain did stop the reggae jam. Even though Millennium was leading 3-0 at the half, the referees suspended the game which will be played at a later date.


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Sunday, November 11, 2012

Maya Leaders accuse U.S. Capital/ GOB of inciting ethnic division Belize City, November 7, 2012 Maya leaders have accused U.S. Capital Energy Limited and the Barrow Administration of creating ethnic division and tensions among their people. Cristina Coc, the spokesperson for the Maya Leaders Association, said U.S. Capital, the oil company which has requested Government’s permission to carry out drilling in Maya communities including protected areas, has engaged in wily tactics such as bribery and misinformation. As an example, Coc cited the hiring of Ligorio Coy. Coy isn’t just an ordinary person. He was the Maya Leaders Association spokesperson and a very outspoken Maya rights and customary land rights advocate until he accepted an unknown job with U.S. Capital. Reports are that he has been gifted a pickup truck and collects a lucrative monthly salary. Coc said Coy has been hired to divide and confuse the Maya people. “Unfortunately our brother is lost. He chose to give in to materi-

MLA Spokesperson, Cristina Coc

alistic things and has been hired by US Capital to divide and erode the Maya leadership,” said Coc as she appeared along with the President of the Toledo Alcalde Association and other Maya leaders on the Krem WUB Morning Show on Wednesday. Coc added the efforts of the oil company will not be successful. “We have many Maya leaders willing to step up. You can’t destroy

Expelled MLA Chairman, Ligorio Coy

this movement,” she said. Coc said that even more concerning is that agents of the oil company were spreading misinformation, in an effort to incite ethnic division. She said that when speaking to persons of Creole or Mestizo descent, the company’s agents accuse the Maya of “wanting everything for themselves”. Maya leaders and U.S. Capital En-

ergy Ltd. are in a row over the oil company’s expressed intention to drill for oil in Mayan communities. Maya leaders say they must be consulted and have an input in any decisions made. But the company says they just need to follow the country’s laws, which requires them to submit an Environmental Impact Assessment to the Department of Environment, participate in public consultations, and await the National Environmental Appraisal Council’s (NEAC) response. Maya leaders have anchored their authority on a 2009 Supreme Court decision which proclaimed that the indigenous Toledo Maya have customary rights to land in the Toledo district. The Government has opposed this view, disclaimed that the Toledo Maya are indigenous, and the Prime Minister has said he will allow US Capital to drill as they will. “We are not against development, we are not even against oil, but this has to do with our rights,” remarked Coc on Wednesday morning.


Sunday, November 11, 2012

THE BELIZE TIMES

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THE BELIZE TIMES

Sunday, November 11, 2012


Sunday, November 11, 2012

THE BELIZE TIMES

Reid Costly surrenders By G. Mike Reid Even the most rabid of UDP supporters seem to now be recognizing that their government, in which they had such high hopes, has been failing miserably. Some figure that they are in too deep and will continue to hope and support while others are more honest and realistic. Facts are stubborn things and the facts are that what has been delivered to us is not what was promised. The UDP came into office with a slew of promises; less crime, more jobs, better housing and a lower cost of living no matter what; and oh yes, an oil refinery this time around. Well into their second term of office, the people are still waiting for at least one of these promises to be fulfilled. Cost of living has gone through the roof, unemployment has more than doubled and crime…well just listen to the evening news. This week, the Minister of National Security unveiled his new plan to deal with crime. Problem is that this new plan looks very much like old ways of oppressing citizen. According to the Minister, the Police will designate certain areas “crime ridden” and will be given carte blanche powers to deal with persons in such designated areas. In a plan

that sounds very much like the rejected Eight Amendment, anyone found in those areas “will be held as often and as long as it takes for the Police to conduct proper investigations”. If we are to listen to the DPP, this might in many cases be forever. It has long been the complaint of the DPP that the Police do not do proper investigation. What is becoming obvious is that what was apparent to everyone else all along has now become apparent to this government. Their much heralded “money for peace gang appeasement program” was ill-advised, a complete failure and had no chance of succeeding from the beginning! Of course, it had to cost us in excess of seven million dollars per annum to find this out. It seems that John Saldivar has decided that if the big money carrot will not work, then it is time to pull out the big stick. This brings to mind the words of an editorial written in the Jamaica Gleaner this past August. In a well thought out piece, the author wrote, “There are many ways, the saying goes, to skin a cat. But the process is unlikely to be efficient with a blunt axe, wildly wielded in a crowded room. You may, in the end, get the cat, but with great collateral damage and at a cost far greater than intended, or you dared to contemplate.” The fact is that John Saldivar and his UDP have grown desperate. The people are crying out for something to be done and the lack of experience and commonsense has Saldivar ready to resort to any measure. His lack of creativity has given way to the syllogism of something needs to be done about X therefore Y must be done. X in this case being crime and Y being equal to draconian measures. His Y however, has been tried as a solution for crime ever since time immemorial but it has never worked! For Saldivar to subject all the res-

There are many mothers who have done remarkable jobs of raising well-behaved and productive children. They should be recruited to give lessons to first time moms, in particular these young teenage girls. “

idents of any particular area, (regardless of how crime ridden he believes those areas to be), to the unfettered heavy hand of the Police is not only unfair but unwise. People will eventually rebel and as a result, take the side of criminals instead of law and order. For those who are so desperate for safety that they are willing to surrender liberty, let them heed the words of Benjamin Franklyn. The legendary inventor and statesman warned that, “Those who surrender freedom for security will not have, nor do they deserve, either one.” By a show of hands, who’s first in line to go down as collateral damage? For those who will suggest that “if you are not doing anything, you have nothing to worry about”, here is something that you should worry about. There are those who young people refer to nowadays as “haters”. Haters will hate for little or no reason. A ‘hater’ will call the Police and tell them that you have drugs or firearms in your house. According to John Saldivar’s new rule, the Police will then, based on this complaint, have the power to enter your premise without a warrant and hold you for “as long as it takes for them to do their investigation”. In some instances, just protesting their actions and professing your innocence will be enough to anger some unreasonable Police Officer into prolonging the time necessary to do their so-called investigation. “Nothing to worry about if I’m doing nothing wrong” loses legitimacy when the Police can alter what is “wrong” at will. Until you have been picked up and thrown into jail for no reason, you will not know what it feels like. Until you have had your home violated and turned upside down in a search, you will not know how it feels. Belizeans will have to careful as to how much liberty they will surrender for a promise of security. With this government’s propensity to victimize and overstep their bounds, it is quite likely that many innocent citizens will be trampled and caught up in this dragnet of desperation. Certainly we cannot just wring our hands in despair and for sure, something needs to be done; but not just anything! This heavy handed, big stick approach is not what is needed to solve our problems. As Martin Luther

13 has said, “Violence multiplies violence, and toughness multiplies toughness in a descending spiral of destruction....” The government will have to figure out more creative ways to battle this evil scourge of terror that they themselves have unleashed upon us. For sure crime did not just start with the UDP but things have retrogressed considerably under their watch. During the last PUP administration, there was a vibrant Crime Control Council that met on a monthly basis to address the problems as they arose. The UDP refused to participate and seemingly did everything to exacerbate the already worsening situation. Dean Barrow in his time as Opposition Leader defended many criminals and called for “sustained civil unrest”. He has never called off this action and it might be a classic case of the “chickens coming home to roost”! I do not believe that creating a Police state is best way to tackle our problem. Crime is a hydra-headed beast and will require a multi-prong approach. A couple of significant areas to start from are in the home and in the courts. There are many mothers who have done remarkable jobs of raising well-behaved and productive children. They should be recruited to give lessons to first time moms, in particular these young teenage girls. There is a successful way to raise children and just as it cannot be done by beating them into submission, we will not stop crime by subjecting our society to draconian rule. We must learn from those who have been successful. From the court side, we must be able to convict those who are guilty of breaking the law and violating the rights of others. Justice must be dispensed across the board and with no regard for wealth, area of residence or political affiliation. We cannot continue to sacrifice justice at the altar of technicality and our judges must settle cases based on the merits of evidence and not on the flair of fallacious arguments. As for government, we must be careful how much power we put into the hands of these politicians. It was Thomas Jefferson who rightly said, “In questions of power, then, let no more be said of confidence in man, but bind him down from mischief by the chains of the Constitution”.


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THE BELIZE TIMES

Hon. Dr. Marco Tulio Mendez calls out Minister of Health Pablo Marin By Dr. Marco Tulio Mendez, Orange Walk East Area Representative Minister of health has a false idea of power: Minister you are naked. The maternal infant department of the Northern Regional Hospital has been involved in a series of malpractice allegations for the past months. The entire nation knows about the suffering of our women. Mrs. Alicia Patt and Mrs. Magdalena Chable were brave enough to come forward and demand explanations and an investigation into their cases. Cases continue to happen. There is not one single day that you don’t hear about a woman that has a complaint about the way she was treated at the hospital. The Belize Medical and Dental Association has pronounced their position asking the ministry for an independent or external inquiry. The People’s United Party held a press conference where I denounced and demanded a prompt solution. Up to now, no response from the minister. Absolutely no response from the ministry. The Minister of Health knows where the problems lie; but due to his immature, selfish, vindictive attitude and his false idea of showing power he keeps punishing our women. Minister this is not about power, nor politics, nor scare-mongering of our health services…it is about our suffering northern women. A third brave woman has come forward. Sally Coh, 17 year old patient, a teenager, who visited me with her two week old baby, another brain damaged baby with multiple seizures who had to be transferred to the KHMH. Admitted at the hospital today: 2 more cases. I don’t wish any children harm but I bet you if any of these children had somebody with influence in government or was a close relative with any minister or the prime minister, something might have already been done. But be-

cause they are poor… nothing has been done. I heard that closed meetings have been held at the northern regional hospital. I visited the hospital and spoke to the regional manager; she said she couldn’t comment but that it was being blown out of proportion. I understand her, she is not qualified for that post and she is only trying to protect the minister, her cousin. But if the conclusion of that meeting is that it is being blown out of proportion, say it publicly, say it to those women without uterus, without ovaries, with multiple interventions, with bladder lesions, with intestinal injuries, ribs fractures and with severe brain damage as is this teenager’s child: ¾ of his brain gone, severely damaged. Prime Minister you have a huge crisis at the northern regional hospital. I have also been told that the husband of one of the doctors involved from the maternity ward has been given a new post of consultant for our nation’s maternal/ child health program. He just arrived and he will advise on maternal/child health care in our country. Minister, that post should have been given to a Belizean doctor. We have brilliant Belizean pediatricians: we have Dr. Kent, Dra. Correa, Dr. Eck, Dr. Rosado, Dra. Rios, Dra Ochoa, they know the system and what needs to be addressed. The reason I am here today is because I cannot be witness of more sufferings of our people and in the name of our Belizean women from the north, I demand an immediate replacement of the specialist in charge of the gynecology/obstetric department at the northern regional hospital. And if the minister is not capable of hiring a good, well trained doctor… I, as a Belizean, as a physician, as former president of the medical and dental association, and as a duly elected representa-

tive of the people, demand an immediate closure of the maternity services at the northern regional hospital. No more brain damage infants. It is morally right, ethically right and it is politically right for you do so. I take this opportunity to call on all health workers in the entire medical public system to no longer keep quiet, to come forward and share your information...health is the wealth of our nation….our women and children deserve the best.

Sunday, November 11, 2012


Sunday, November 11, 2012

THE BELIZE TIMES

Home Economics

On the Second Business Forum By Richard Harrison I’m encouraged to see that there is a Second Business Forum to enhance and expand dialogue between the public and private sectors of Belize. There is even an Economic Development Council with “shared-chairmanship”...at least in symbolism... if not in substance...this just might become a good thing. All I can say.... is if you listen to the same set of people....you will likely get the same set of recommendations...and likely the same results you have been getting all these years. The heads of the BCCI, even though it says it is democratic, have not changed much over the past twenty years. The addition of Mrs Amparo Masson as Private Sector Liason in the Office of The Prime Minister.... is also a very welcome thing...especially taking into consideration that other organizations established to facilitate the private sector have not been able to do so. She is doing a whole lot....but she cannot do what is required by herself...with the clock ticking against us. Seems like three important things came out of the forum: 1. The PM announced that the IMF has been requested to assist us with a review of our entire tax system and to make recommendations for improving it. 2. There is another commitment to address the sorry state of crime in our communities, although it seems personal freedoms will be taken away. 3. There is another commitment to address the sorry state of corruption in our public services, both from the supply and demand sides. Here are my comments: 1. A review of our tax system without general guidance from our Government, may just get us a new system that is like changing monkey for black dog. Our PM has to state categorically that he wants Belizeans to live a high standard of living in full employment....and that the way he believes this will happen.... is by focusing all our people’s energy and resources on making Belize a production/consumption economy, rather than the current importation/consumption bias of our existing economy. With this general guidance, the architects of the tax restructuring will have their terms

of reference....and know what RESULTS we are expecting from the restructuring. Their PERFORMANCE will be judged according to their RESULTS. Our PM has made no such categorical statement to date... 2. Our tax system has been tweaked so many times....in the interest of “special” persons or groups.....that we have created a tax system of favorites. For example, the last round of import duties that was lowered to ZERO on 1st April, 2010; were done in the interest of such “special” importation persons under the guise of “lowering cost of living”...causing grave harm to other production investors....and yielding opposite RESULTS to the stated objectives. That has happened repeatedly since Independence. Any new system, to be better, will have to get rid of this favoritism....and must include new rules and procedures on HOW to go about making adjustments in the future. Taxes must be fair...and be seen to be fair....they must be across the board and balanced.... with one simple system of reporting for everyone....they must be as low as is possible. Belize can be a high performance economy with a 1% business tax across the board..... 15% average rate of import duty (it’s at 9% average currently), with the rate on production inputs at ZERO, the rate highest possible for imports that compete directly with our production, and lower rates on “so-called” luxury items....10% GST on goods and services across the board...no personal income tax. Belize must do what it takes so that the pump price of fuel in Belize is at the same level as Mexico. With this basic formula Belize will become highly productive and fully employed. 3. To make crime and corruption the principal points of discussion at a business forum shows that the participants have limited understanding of what to do to get the economy moving and to employ our population. Those are topics that are always “grey” topics.....and RESULTS with them are always very hard to assess and quantify....hence PERFORMANCE with these are not very easy to appraise. They are like Health and Education in the POLITICAL world.... they are always topics for the poli-

ticians to make promises on...and to banter about....because they are so broad and deep and polymorphous....with so many differing opinions related to them....that we can play POLITICS with them until we are old and grey....and take them to heaven with us. For these forums to bear fruits....they should concentrate on topics of business proper....profitability, taxes, inter-

15 est rates, exchange rates, labor productivity, quality management, bank charges, rules relative to bank defaults and disposal of assets, asset valuations, petroleum royalties, private ownership rights, etc etc. Richard Harrison is a local businessman and investor in the manufacturing and service industries. Send comments to harrisonbz@ yahoo.com


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THE BELIZE TIMES

Sunday, November 11, 2012

…while Belizeans struggle & suffer This is how the UDPs roll…

Lover or Hulk? Driving in thick traffic one morning my eye caught a quick glimpse of a young lady walking but constantly looking behind her back. She was noticeably upset and at the same time fearful. A couple feet behind her was a young man. They were in their own world as if no one else existed. Soon the walking turned into a quick sprint led off by the woman. She took off in a direction opposite to that which the cars were going, with the young man taking off behind her like an angry and very hungry lion. He was so upset that he got off balance while pulling the curve and almost hit my car but eventually managed to catch his step. From the look on his face I quickly picked up that he was not going to caress her when he caught up with her. He was angry and extremely focused, with what turned out to be a short chase probably about twenty vehicles behind mine. I heard the lady cry out as he caught up with her and I could vaguely see in my rear view mirror that his hand was stretched out towards her. It really dug out a piece of my heart and I wondered if I should have parked on the side, leave my child in the car and run up the street to try and bring some peace to the situation. I also began to wonder what it was that could make them so mad and cause a fight which, of course, only the lady could lose! I wondered if it was her fault or his. From a young child when walking on the street if I would see an adult overdoing the discipline of a child or see a man beating on his woman it would be a sour taste in my mouth. The first and last time I hit a woman I was around fifteen years old going to high school and one of my little brothers was acting up. As I went after him one of my sisters moved in to stop me from reaching to him. I warned her to move and after she refused we got physical to where she became my punching bag. Well, I will tell you that she scored a huge goal by hitting a home run! The bat was a heavy metal pot full of beans while the ball happened to be my hips. She hit me so hard that my two feet rose off the ground and I saw Michael Jackson, Michael Jordan, and a couple of my favorite stars! I limped for months! The fight reached up to a level where although I was the younger one I had to give her a bear hug to keep her from fatally wounding me with what she was planning to pick up next. She cried and cried and told me to ‘let her go’ which was not going to happen of course until I was sure she cooled down. While she was in my arms crying I got really heartbroken, and it was at that moment I made up my mind that I would never hit a woman from that day forward. I have kept my word ever since. In the operating manual (1 Peter 3:7) it tells the husbands to love their wives as the weaker vessel. This is saying to us directly that women are physically weaker than men! They are as smart or smarter, as valuable, and capable pound for pound in most cases, but God made them weaker and softer for our pleasure and compatibility. When you get angry men do not hit on your wives or girlfriends. Go take a bath, go for a walk, cool off and comeback with civilized reasoning in your head, not anger, remembering that she is the weaker vessel! I must say that I’m tempted now to begin a series warning and encouraging women what to look for in a man before hooking up with him! Let’s see what next week brings! God Bless!

Prime Minister Dean Barrow’s new Law Firm Deputy Prime Minister Gaspar Vega’s 2012 Land Cruiser valued at $180,000

Ministry of Energy and Science CEO Colin Young’s 2011 Toyota Hilux – valued at $65,000

Minister of Gangs Mark King’s Ford 150 - valued at $74,500

Minister of Works Rene Montero’s 2012 Toyota Prado – valued at $96,000


Sunday, November 11, 2012

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THE BELIZE TIMES

BELIZE TIMES WEEKLY

SCIENCE & TECH R

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Selected By Chris Williams

Camera-to-sound app lets blind people ‘see’ 7 November 2012

People who have lived in the dark from birth have now found they don’t need their eyes to see. A new device developed by Amir Amedi from the Hebrew University of Jerusalem in Israel and colleagues is giving congenitally blind adults the ability to interpret visual information from sound. In this video, you can watch people listen to sounds that illustrate an object or a facial expression, then describe what they are “seeing”. The system can also be used to read by assigning sounds to letters. A tiny camera is strapped to the user’s head and connected to a computer or smartphone. An algorithm converts images to sound, providing a depiction of an object via headphones. Sound dips higher or lower

to represent the surface of a shape, allowing the person to form a representation in their mind. It took

about 70 hours of training for a blind person to learn to describe a range of images.

By monitoring the neural activity of blind people using the device, Amedi and his team found that even though the users weren’t using their eyes, their visual cortex was activated by the soundscapes. This shows, for the first time, that specialised areas responsible for object recognition or reading can still be triggered later in life even if they have never been exposed to normal visual information. The team now plans to improve the system by using music to represent colours, shapes and locations. They want to make the audio more pleasant, since participants got irritated by the current soundscapes after just a few hours of use. If you enjoyed this post, watch another system that uses sound to allow blind people to locate objects.

Climate blindness risked as satellites lose their eyes 07 November 2012 by Jeff Hecht US environmental satellites that helped forecasters predict superstorm Sandy are failing. By 2020, the fleet could have just a quarter of the sensors it has today. In a paper posted online, Kevin Trenberth of the National Center for Atmospheric Research in Boulder, Colorado, warns that new launches are not keeping up with the failures of older instruments. As a result, NASA and the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration could have just 20 sensors in orbit by 2020. “We are basically going

Get a good look while you still can (Image: NOAA)

blind in terms of our ability to monitor the planet,” says

Antonio Busalacchi at the University of Maryland in College

Park, who contributed to a recent report on the state of climate satellites. T h e r e have been delays sending satellites into polar orbits. The first of NOAA’s new JPSS s a t e l lites won’t launch until 2017, which last

year forced NASA to launch a stopgap satellite called Suomi NPP. Any failures before 2017 will leave a gap in weather data. Climate research is sensitive to launch delays, as new instruments need to operate simultaneously with old ones for a year to calibrate their sensors. Suomi’s sensors may fail before 2017, warns Trenberth.


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THE BELIZE TIMES

Sunday, November 11, 2012

Young Belizean defends Belize Coalition for Justice

UB Students cautions about Mass Tourism Development Continued from page 2 the water which will eventually harm corals and sea grass by reducing the light that can reach them. The sediments will also alter the area’s nutrient levels. Furthermore, this sedimentation will affect spawning sites especially for lobsters. The overall effects of dredging and the clearing of mangrove will cause irreparable damage to the environment and the marine life that are dependent on it (MAP, 2009). It is therefore apparent that a balance between development and conservation of the environment must be reached. In order to reach this balance, innumerable legislations are put in place by the Government to guide the construction of major projects. Some of the legislations that are involved with the South Beach Project are as follows: • The Environmental Protection Act SI 22/1992 and 328/2003 • Pollution Regulations SI 56/1996 • Coastal Zone Management Strategy Chap. 329 2000 Revised Edition • Cayes Development Policy – CZMIA/Fisheries Department 1995 • Solid Waste Management Authority Act SI 224 of 2003 • Mines and Minerals Act Chap. 226 of 2000 • Forests (Mangrove Protection) Regulations, SI No. 52 of 1989 • Hotels and Tourist Accommodation Act SI 285/2000 • Protected Areas Conservation Trust Act (PACT) Chap. 218/2000 • Fisheries Act (HCMR) Chap. 210s/2003 (Hol Chan) (Environmental Impact Assessment Section 2) This list illustrates an extensive guideline for developers to be environmentally safe during the construction of a major project. But are these legislations adequate? It is in my opinion that the legislations are adequate. The legislations listed above attempt to deal with every issue that may arise during the construction of South Beach Belize. The problem with these legislations is that they are sufficient in theory, but are not necessarily practiced. The Forests (Mangrove Protection) Regulations, for example, is supposed to protect and prohibit the clearing of mangrove. Information gathered, however about SBB, shows that the project’s proximity to Hol Chan and the Barrier reef, both of extreme “ecological value”, was ignored. Phase one which includes the removal of mangroves has already commenced (San Pedro Sun, 2008). Furthermore, construction for

this project occurred without a permit which is another violation of ‘The Ambergris Caye Local Building Authority Act’. This act requires developers “to obtain legal permission for their projects prior to implementation through submitting plans to the Local Building Authority.” (EIA, 2008, 2-129). Construction workers were clearing mangroves without a permit until community members and environmentalists demanded an Environmental Impact Assessment. Obviously, from these examples it is apparent that legislations that are put in place to guide environmental safety are not always enforced. What can be done to ensure that guidelines are followed? The greatest recommendation that I can offer is the implementation of Sustainable Development Courses within schools. Students need to learn the importance of preserving the environment and its resources for future generations. In addition, another strategy that may be employed is the use of Forums as an educational tool. Forums should be held by the existing Environmental Organizations to encourage eco-tourism in opposition to mass tourism. Invitations for these forums should be extended to

Continued from page 2 low Belizeans. But the main issue that we’ve given our voices to is that of the Belize-Guatemala differendum, an issue that has only more divisive, and is, to my own mind, no less than a plot to raze and lay waste to our young nation. I’m not that highly skilled in rhetoric, so I’ll stick to rational thinking and opinion. Our mission now is both simplistic and complex – to convince a divided, fractured people to unite in

hotel owners, investors and developers. It is realistic to understand that development will affect the environment to some extent. The basic question therefore is, ‘how much is acceptable under the circumstances?’ Many declare that Belize should encourage development as long as it is sustainable. The greatest challenge therefore, is the discovery of an acceptable point that will create a balance between conservation and development. This letter aims to create awareness and to give realistic recommendations to reach this desired balance. I desperately hope that the persons in authority would heed to this concern and assist in making a better Belize for all of us as well as for our visitors. Sincerely, Marla Batista NRMP 1014 Belize City Campus University of Belize

and say NO to taking this claim to the International Court of Justice (ICJ). This is as big, as real, as looming an issue than any other – even bigger than crime (and that’s another boiling kettle onto its own). And there’ll surely be a ton of egos – political, national, within and outside of the BCJ – all jostling for attention. But the above, whether I’m Christian or not, isn’t applicable to me. I’m aware, more deeply than anything else, that this is bigger than me, than anyone else. But even so, egos will clash, thereby threatening the larger point – that making the choice to go to the ICJ will mark our nation’s last gasp, no doubt about it. My real concern at present is the young people – those without voice or hope. No amount of political rhetoric will convince them, but a little ‘handout’ might – precisely a fear the BCJ will not tolerate, but will fight against entirely. I consider this letter as my way of announcing not only the BCJ’s fight, but also our nation’s fight. The present national Government will surely use a divide-and-conquer approach, but we must remain strong and steadfast. This is our nation’s mission now, our fight to win – or to lose. The choice that we make now will be our joy tomorrow…. or our downfall later. BELIZE DA FU WE! MEK WI FIGHT FI ANH!!! With many thanks, Alton F. Humes Proud Young Belizean Citizen


Sunday, November 11, 2012

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THE BELIZE TIMES

Will UDP derail Public Accounts Committee? Belize City, November 7, 2012 The Belize Chamber of Commerce and Industry has urged Prime Minister Dean Barrow “to ensure” that the four UDP representatives who have been appointed to the Public Accounts Committee (PAC) attend Committee meetings. In a letter sent to the Prime Minister dated November 6th, the BCCI said the important check-and-balance Committee was derailed by a lack of commitment from its members. “The PAC should play a vital role in safeguarding the expenditure of public funds and should serve as the main link in public accountability. Despite its critical role of scrutinizing the management of government accounts…the PA has been inactive,” said the Chamber’s letter. The Chamber said it is a disadvantage that the ruling party had more leverage in the Committee, with the Government having four members and the Opposition only two. The recently-elected

Hon. Julius Espat

Hon. Rodwell Ferguson

Chairman is currently, PUP Cayo South Area Representative, Hon. Julius Espat. He is joined by PUP Stann Creek West Area Representative Hon. Rodwell Ferguson, and UDP Representatives Hon.

Patrick Faber, Hon. Michael Finnegan, Hon. John Saldivar and Hon. Erwin Contreras. The next meeting of the Committee is scheduled for Monday, November 12, 2012.

Baby Friendly No More! Continued from page 3 Something terribly wrong is going on at the Northern Regional Hospital. Sally’s tragic story is the third of the like in a month which all occurred at the Orange Walk-based hospital. There have been other stories such as that of 31 year old Alicia Pott, who was admitted on October 1st. Pott said the doctors had to perform a C-Section to deliver her baby. After that, the doctors said Pott was bleeding heavily and she went back under the knife. When she woke up, she was told that the doctors had to remove her womb to contain the bleeding. The operation didn’t work and Pott was later transferred to the KHMH where a third surgery was carried out, this time to remove one of her ovaries. Pott had contracted an infection from the surgeries. She fell into a coma for three days and was admitted at the hospital for 13 days. Then there is the case of Maria Chable, who was admitted once again at the Northern Regional Hospital on September 1st. Chable’s feared that her child would be born with compli-

Hon. Pablo Marin is MIA

cations since 20 years ago she had given birth to a baby that had brain damage. She requested that a C-section be performed, but she was ignored. The doctors finally decided to carry out a C-section a few hours later, but by then the baby seemed to have been affected. The child was born with severe asphyxia and was transferred to the KHMH in an emergency. Chable’s worst fear had come true. She said the baby was born with an enlarged head and began suffering

multiple seizures. The baby was taken to the KHMH where she remained for two weeks. A Catscan revealed that the baby has brain damage. The mother feels that if a C-Section had been performed when she requested, the complications could have been avoided. The BELIZE TIMES had also covered the report made by Michelle Gonzalez, a mother who claimed she was pregnant with twins, but only gave birth to one child. While Health officials claim that case at the Northern Regional Hospital was being investigated, it seems inconclusive since there has been no release of information. The Belize Medical Council, led by former UDP Fort George candidate Dr. George Gough seems to be ignoring the cases. The Belize Medical and Dental Association has expressed concern but say it is the Council that needs to respond. Now that three more cases have surfaced, Minister of Health Pablo Marin must come out of his hiding hole and do his job!

Hon. Espat has directed the Clerk of the National Assembly, Eddie Webster, to inform the members of the meeting. The Chairman also requested that the Auditor General and Financial Secretary be summoned to the meeting. In their letter to the PM, the Chamber expressed concern that without a functional PAC, the Auditor General’s recommendations on important financial matters could go unrealised. So why would the Chamber feel it necessary to make such a passionate appeal to the Prime Minister? Perhaps it is that they have noticed the PM’s antagonistic attitude towards the Opposition’s participation in important Government matters in fear that, as the PM put it with the Superbond scenario, the Opposition could “claim success”. Or is that at the first meeting of the newly-elected Committee, in which Hon. Espat was elected as Chairman, two UDP representatives Hon. John Saldivar and Hon. Erwin Contreras were missing in action?

Young woman gunned down in city streets Belize City, November 5, 2012 A 27 year old young man, Gayle Escarpeta, was killed when the vehicle she travelled in was targeted by armed criminals. Around 2:30am on Saturday November 3, Escarpeta and a male person were travelling in a white Mazda Tribute on George Street in Belize City when they were approached by a green car with four male occupants. The occupants of the car came out and shot at in the direction of Escarpeta, causing fatal injuries. Escarpeta suffered three gunshot wounds; two to the right arm and one to the right arm pit. She was pronounced dead on arrival at the hospital. Escarpeta was employed as a computer program assistant at the Youth For the Future.


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THE BELIZE TIMES

Sunday, November 11, 2012


Belize Times November 11, 2012