No. 131 Sunday, October 14, 2007 Price $1.00
SANTA ELENA TOWN, Cayo, Thursday, October 11,2007:
We are living in an environment of instant information and communication and so when neighbors and those passing by saw a Belize Defense Force truck unloading a large amount of hurricane supplies at the George Price Avenue home of Cayo's NEMO Coordinator, Mrs. Elsa Vasquez, they obviously became concerned given prior reports of alleged "hanky panky" in the handling of hurricane supplies placed in the care of the National Emergency Management Organizaton (NEMO).
By the time we arrived in the area the Belize Defense Force truck was pulling out of the yard but a large amount of pre packaged supplies were still on the porch of the family house while no less than three
members of the Coordinator's family were hastily moving them into the interior of the house.
A first call was placed to NEMO Coordinator, Elsa Vasquez for an explanation. She informed that she was in Belmopan and denied that the packages were hurricane relief supplies. She said that the items were procured by a group from Cayo and that the packages were supplied by some Belize City based merchants for distribution to needy families in the area.
She would neither provide information on the "group from Cayo" nor the "Belize City based merchants."
She however promised to meet us as soon as she returned to Santa Elena.
We have since been waiting for her call which up to press time this
Carrying In The Last Amount Of Supplies
Thursday night had still not been received.
After speaking to Elas Vasquez, we next contacted NEMO's National
San Ignacio Police "Bunker Down" Approach
SAN IGNACIO TOWN, Cayo, Thursday, October 11,2007:
We will be among the first to admit that following last year's change of command at the San Ignacio police formation, we never would have thought that the situation could have gotten worse, well today we must face up to that sad reality. The general consensus is that San Ignacio police is in dire need of new direction.
Major crimes are going unreported and more so undetected, as the police are now attempting to cover up this flaw by keeping the information from the press. They
might be successful in hiding this condition from the general public but their monthly statistical reports to National Police Headquarters will readily show this troubling trend.
Prisoners are regularly escaping with no disciplinary action being taken against those on whose watch these escapes are taking place.
Liquor dispensing establishments are increasingly serving alcoholic beverages way beyond closing time and police patrols are increasingly turning a blind eye on these major violations with some of them even stopping to patronize or maybe
getting free drinks at these establishments while junior personnel are publicly disrespecting senior officers with impunity.
The detachment has, over the past few months, taken a "bunker down approach to the dissemination of information to the media as the basic human rights of citizens are increasingly being violated.
Minors are being held without the knowledge of their parents or guardians. Detainees are routinely tortured in the "investigation" process prompting one official to
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Coordinator (Ret. Col.) George Lovell who informed that the items where indeed NEMO hurricane supplies. When we brought up the fact that there were no known victims from neither hurricanes Dean nor Felix in this area, he informed that the supplies were actually requested for distribution to needy families in the area.
Col. Lovell advised us to contact Mayor John August whom he said is the Deputy Chair of NEMO. He informed that the Mayor was aware of the supplies coming into town and that the Mayor's vehicle was initially intended to be used to transport the supplies into town.
He further informed that this mode of transportation was changed because the Mayor's vehicle was not working and so a BDF truck was
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Page 2 STAR Tel: 667-7827 Email: firstname.lastname@example.org Sunday, October 14, 2007
ARE HURRICANE PACKAGES TURNING INTO POLITICAL GIFTS?
Continued From Front Page
Col. Lovell additionally informed that, with Elsa Vasquez being in Belmopan, the NEMO office in San Ignacio was closed and that she was the only person in possession of the keys hence the reason why she directed that the supplies be deposited to her home.
Immediately after speaking to Col. Lovell we contacted Mayor August.
He told us that the first knowledge he had of these supplies coming into town was five minutes before our call when Elsa Vasquez called and told him to submit the names of twenty five persons to whom he would want packages to be delivered.
We asked about his vehicle being used to transport the stuff and he said that no such request was ever
made to him. We also asked about his vehicle not working to which he responded that his vehicle is in proper working condition and that the vehicle is presently assisting with the collection of garbage around town.
One would suspect, that with all the reports of suspected hanky panky surrounding NEMO supplies, the very last place that any NEMO official would want these supplies to go would be to their homes especially when taken into context with reports that none other than the Prime Minister himself had to intervene in connection with reports of a NEMO generator ending up at the home of a NEMO official in this area shortly after the last hurricane.
During the course of the day on Thursday, known operatives of Cayo Central's PUP candidate Mario
NEMO Coordinator Cayo, Elsa Vasquez
Castellanos were seen carting off the supplies from Vasquez' home to destinations unknown.
Obviously, these supplies, generously donated by concerned business establishments and International donor agencies intended for hurricane victims, are now finding
San Ignacio Police "Bunker Down" Approach
Continued From Front Page
recently comment that the proverbial thing will hit the fan whenever, God forbids, a detainee ends up dead during one of these sessions of "investigation."
Then there are those regular cases where the Magistrate, one day, issues a removal order of a person to be released from the Hattieville prison after bail conditions have been met, but the person must remain in j ail for an additional three or four more days "because it is not one of those days that the police vehicle goes to the prison". If the family is poor, their relative remains illegally imprisoned. Then if the family wants the relative to be released as ordered by the court, they must pay a policeman $ 100 to make the trip to Hattieville as this has become a major "hustle" at this formation.
The lack of effective supervision and meticulous documentation is giving rise to junior officers making frequent flawed decisions and issuing questionable advice to those who visit the station to file a complaint.
Take for instance the Godfather who took his 13 year old Goddaughter into the station to report that a certain male person is habitually passing menacing sexual remarks at her. The report, according to the godfather, is being made because the child feels threatened especially as this individual had, on two occasions, visited her house when she was home alone. Then the officer behind the desk tells the girl in the presence of her Godfather not to worry about anything because "That is the way men act" and that she must go home and if he ever comes around then she must visit the station again. An unsatisfied Godfather walks out of the station with his Goddaughter in tow. WRONG AD VICE Why was the accused not sent for immediately -
NO DOCUMENTATION what if the man interferes with the girl again and she visits the police station to make another complaint, there is an almost sure possibility that they will not meet that same policeman on duty and therefore no one, except that policeman, would have been aware that a previous report was made.
What about the case when former Minster Daniel Silva Jr. made the report that the caretaker on his farm witnessed someone removing logs from his property and when he reported the matter, he was advised to take out a civil suit against the person who was seen extracting the logs WRONG ADVICE A criminal act is being reported. The police action is to arrest the accused and bring that person before the court.
What about the now regular reports of stolen bicycles. There are cases when victims of these crimes conduct their own investigation as the police "can hardly afford to be bothered by these kinds of petty crimes". When these victims find their bicycles and visit the police station with the name and address of the person who has their bicycles, the advice they get is to go and take away their bicycles. Is this not creating breathing grounds for the eruption of a confrontation between the parties?
Then there was the case we headlined last week in which Jose Montero's vehicle was stolen. He promptly filed a report at the San Ignacio Police Station. The police obviously were negligent in issuing the required ALL POINTS BULLETIN (APB). The vehicle was spotted circling round Dangriga all day on Saturday. Dangriga police did not take any action as they had no report on the missing vehicle. It was only after the vehicle was involved in an evening robbery in that municipality that the police began looking for it. The apparent negligence resulted in the
vehicle thieves not being apprehended. This therefore begs the question: Does the person who was robbed of over $5,000 in cash, not have a legitimate case against the police for the recovery of the stolen money resulting from their negligence? What action is being taken against those at the San Ignacio Police Station who were negligent in issuing the APB?
What about the case as recent as this morning when a tourist (European, by his accent) visited the station to find out the status of a report he made earlier, as he would be departing the country the next day, only to be told that the officer to whom he made the report is not on duty and that he should return to the station at midnight when the officeris scheduled to report for work. The tourist rightfully asked the correct question "do you guys not communicate with each other. Why is it that another policeman has not gone to pick up the accused?" The man simply got up and walked out of the station. He will obviously depart our shores with not too pleasant memories of Belize.
These are but a few of the many situations that have come to our attention. What about those many other cases that we know nothing about? We are therefore calling on the police high command to take the necessary action to put the San Ignacio Police ship back on track.
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themselves into the hands of political operatives for the purposes of political convenience.
Vigilant neighbors and others might have caught onto the diversion of "Hurricane Supplies" into the Cayo Central Constituency, this therefore begs the question: could there have been other undetected movements of NEMO hurricane supplies to other constituencies?
Notwithstanding, there are many needy families in ALL constituencies of the Cayo district. We therefore encourage those to whom they come with these tidings, to take the plastic bag containing a tin of lard, two tins of corned beef, two tins of chicken sausage and a tin of Klim.
The ration is meager but as election draws nearer they will be coming with more. After all you have been suffering for almost five years and after this round is completed, the bonanza might not come around again for another five long years.
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Consumer Want And Demand Cheaper Rates
The construction of the first Only this week, we were treated hydro-electric facility in the to the news of ground breaking
nation, we were told, would at long last result in cheaper electricity rates, and so when they asked, we told them: "Go ahead and build the thing".
This approval gave birth, in the early 1990's, to the dam at Mollejon. After the dam was completed and commissioned, our hopes for cheaper electricity rates were dashed to pieces as, instead of going down, the rates went in the other direction, upwards!!!
"Rates cannot go down", they told us "because we miscalculated the output capacity of the Mollejon facility, but don't worry about cheaper rates right now", they consoled us, because in 40 years time you will own the dam and then you will surely get cheaper rates". That arrangement has since vanished into thin air and so we might NEVER own the thing.
"If you truly want cheaper rates, then you must agree to the construction of a second dam to feed the Mollejon they said.
It has always been our dream to have cheaper rates that is why we are often inclined to vote for the political party that promises to lower utility rates. So we told them to go ahead and build second dam.
The second dam was built and, during the comissioning ceremony, the announcement was shamelessly made that electricity rates will "GO UP" instead of down.
Now the promise of cheaper rates has been lost. It has since been replaced with a new set of buzz words Sustainable supply of electricity is the new phrase.
A third dam, on the Macal River, is now under construction at Vaca Falls and what will it do for consumers? "Don H worry ", they say, it will provide you with a "sustainable supply of electricity."
for a new 124 million dollar source of electricity supply dubbed the BELCOGEN facility to be located on the compound of the sugar factory at Tower Hill on the outskirts of Orange Walk Town.
"The Chinese are coming in to build the project" they say "It is slated to come on line in 2009" and what will this new source of electricity bring to Belizean Consumers? You got that right.. Sustainable supply of electricity."
To hell with "sustainable supply of electricity" what Belizean consumers want and demand is CHEAPER ELECTRICITY RATES.
Quite frankly "sustainable supply of electricity" means nothing to consumers. If rates are not significantly reduced, a cheaper source of electricity means nothing to consumers. On the flip side however, it means everything to the providers as their already huge profits will grow even bigger.
The announcement was made this week that "The Chinese are coming into Orange Walk to buildthe BELCOGEN facility". Lets us hope that Orange Walkenos do not allow themselves to be used and abused by these Chinese as those building the Dam at Vaca are doing to us here in Cayo.
When all is said and done, it is the Belizean people who, through the high cost of electricity, will have to pay the almost 100 million dollars for the construction of the dam at Vaca Falls in like fashion as we are paying for Chalillo and Mollejon.
Why is it then that our Labor and Immigration Departments are sitting mute as an increasing number of Nepalese are being brought in to replace Belizean workers on the site at Vaca Falls?
We are not referring to the importation of skilled laborers. What we are referring to are
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truck drivers and other unskilled laborers. Do we not have enough professional truck drivers and laborers to fill these vacant slots?
The bulk of the money we pay for electricity is already finding its way into Canada. Why then are we allowing an increasing portion of the construction money to now find its way into Nepal while the employable in our community remain unemployed?
We must also ask ourselves: Why is there a rapid turnover of workers at Vaca Falls while the Chinese "boss" dare those dismissed to go to the labor department? Is it because they realize how vulnerable and expensable we are especially when we are required to present a note from the PUP political officer in Benque before we
can even be considered for employment on a project for which we will be repaying long, long after these "Chinese bosses" are gone?
The advantage that is being taken of our fellow Belizeans on the site at Vaca Falls is symptomatic of a weak government coupled with an almost non-functional, poor excuse for a labor department in this area.
The grossly inadequate Labour Department in this area is through no fault of the good lady who labors there as she is known to be expending her utmost best, but there is only so much that one person can do. The fault therefore rests squarely on the shoulders of those who govern as they were specifically elected and sworn to protect the rights of the governed.
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Page 4 STAR Tel: 667-7827 Email: firstname.lastname@example.org Sunday, October 14, 2007
Floyd's Words Of Encouragement
Thanks for the continued email of the STAR Newspaper.
I can't say enough about being able to stay abreast of my HI' San Ignacio from the news coverage that your
newspaper do provide. Wishing you continued success and I hope that you keep up the good work.
s/ Floyd Haylock, San Jose, California USA
Belize Has Suffered Another Serious Moral Assault!
By: Dr. Paticia Asling, formerly of Benque Viejo Town, Cayo, Belize; now residing in Canada, Friday, October 5, 2007:
It was with a great deal of sadness, shock and disappointment that I heard this morning that Marion Jones had admitted to drug use, for 2 years prior the Olympics in which she won her 5 medals. After all her denials it is a real blow.
Marion had become an icon of sportsmanship and clean living and everyone was feeling great sympathy for her as she went through the ordeals of first, her husband, and then, her partner, being barred from sports and losing titles.
Even though I have never met the girl, I feel so badly; it is hard to image how strongly this news has devastated family and friends throughoutBelize.
Heroes are hard to find and she was a hero in the eyes of most Belizeans -and now the hero has fallen so ignominiously.
What would motivate her to confess at this point in time, when she
had sunk so low financially fighting the accusations, in and out of court?
It is truly a sad situation and she would have been better to confess at the beginning rather than lose all she gained, not just monetarily but in her reputation as well.
If she had admitted it and taken the consequences then I am sure it would have all blown over by now and people would respect her for coming forth.
Now, although she may remain Belize's sports ambassador, her creditability has certainly been tarnished if not completely destroyed.
The pride we all felt in Marion has no doubt turned to recriminations. Everyone is certainly feeling the pain of being betrayed and mislead; how much more must she be feeling the guilt and remorse.
As much as we might want to scream and shout at her, literally and figuratively, we should, instead feel nothing but the deepest sympathy for her and the plight in which she now finds herself.
A Word To The Wise Is Quite Enough
Dear "Management of Local Schools";
Our teachers are living in an environment of fear. The intimidating letters you are sending out is creating an atmosphere of increased uncertainty in our midst.
One of your letters has resulted in last week's dismissal of Mrs. W.
Mr. X got one of them yesterday. Tomorrow it might be Ms. Y. The next day it might just be me.
The text book program is already
causing a lot of stress among the teaching staff, your letters are compounding the anxiety. Be careful how you are dictating the way in which we must live our lives when you yourself could very well be straying from the vows you took.
Be VERY careful how you push the envelope as the end result could be VERY devastating. A word to the wise is quite enough. s/ Ms. Z, Santa Elena, Cayo.
Why Is A Sense Of Lawlessness Overtaking The Land?
Crime is out of control, a sense of lawlessness appears to have overtaken the land. Some say that the situation is as a result of a breakdown in the family structure. Some say that the politicians are to be blamed. Some say that our church leaders are not doing enough. There are others who say that it is because of the lack of employment, the high cost of living and inadequate educational opportunities.
For my part, I say, what else can we expect when even the churches seem to be venturing outside their lanes?
One of the fundamental principles of Christianity is to keep holy the Sabbath. The bible says "Six days shall thou labor and on the seventh day thou shall rest."
For those in the Adventist faith, Saturday is regarded as the holy day.
For other faiths it is Sunday. Take for example the case last week when we were treated to a television advertisement from one of the evangelical churches. This church was advertising the sale on shampoo, toys and used clothes. The sale was to be held from 8:30 am to 3:30 pm last SUNDAY. October 7. Should this not have been a DAY when these people should have been engaged in praising the Lord instead of carrying on a commercial activity? Did they not have the other six days of the week to labor? Why are they violating the very core principle of the Christian faith?
How dare then we ask: why is a sense of lawlessness overtaking the land? Should not the church be the first to set the example? s/ Carlos Trujillo, San Ignacio, Cayo.
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I Sunday, October 14, 2007 STAR Tel: 667-7827 Email: email@example.com
MESSAGE FROM THE SAN IGNACIOfSANTA ELENA TOWN COUNCIL
Town Hall, San Ignacio For IMMEDIATE Release
Thursday, October 11,2007
Dear Residents of San Ignacio and Santa Elena;
In March 2006 you went to the polls and overwhelmingly elected a United Democratic Party Mayor and six Town Councilors.
We came into office on the promise that we would conduct the affairs of our municipality in a transparent, accountable and open manner We have remained firm to that commitment. Hence the reason why we are now coming to you to report some of the major challenges confronting us as we labor to provide you with the goods and services you deserve and demand.
After suffering a humiliating defeat at the polls in the March 2006 municipal elections, the Rt. Hon. Prime Minister, Said Musa, immediately took to the airwaves and made a firm commitment not to victimize the opposition town councils that were duly elected in all municipalities across the length and breath of Belize.
However, no sooner had the Prime Minister uttered those words when the victimization began with the obvious intention to undermine all duly elected municipal bodies and in so doing putting the United Democratic Party in a precarious position. The Belizean people are no fools as they are seeing right through these devious, spiteful and vindictive actions.
In the San Ignacio/Santa Elena scenario, your town council remains saddled with a burdensome garbage collection regime.
Just before being booted out of office in 2000, PUP Mayor Orlando Habet irresponsibly entered into a legally binding 10-year garbage collection contract with PUP crony Raymond Cox. In effect Habet committed future town councils to pay Cox a monthly garbage collection fee of $34,163.74.
During his remaining few months in office Habet was able to pay Cox that fee because, apart from the monthly subvention that his council was receiving, Said Musa's Ministry of Finance was providing Habet with an additional $34,000 subvention to pay for garbage collection. In total therefore, the PUP Town Council under Habet was collecting almost $70,000 in monthly subvention from his PUP central government.
As soon as you voted Habet and his gang out of office, the garbage subvention was cancelled thus slicing the subvention to the council in half. The council under former UDP Mayor Alfonso Cruz suffered for three long years under Habet's burdensome garbage collection regime.
Your present town council is likewise taking a similar punishment. The situation was made worse when the vindictive Prime Minister went even further and removed the duty free fuel privilege from all UDP town councils. In effect, every single UDP town council is now additionally burdened with paying full pump price for the fuel needed to do the people's work.
Although common decency would dictate that no council should enter into any contract beyond its life span, the former PUP Mayor Orlando Habet defied even
the shadow of decency and irresponsibly placed a yoke around the necks of the good people of San Ignacio and Santa Elena.
While the council continues to strain under the yoke imposed by Orlando Habet in meeting the payment for garbage collection, Raymond Cox has been taking advantage of the situation by curtailing the collection of garbage in designated areas. Hence the reason why you will see that the garbage in your area sometimes goes uncollected for weeks. Although Cox is not picking up your garbage in accordance with the contract arrangement, he continues to religiously summit a monthly bill for the FULL $34,163.74. The council has repeatedly brought this dishonest action to Raymond Cox's attention but despite doing so, the irregularity continues. Therefore, whenever your garbage goes uncollected, don't blame the town council; put the blame where it belongs, squarely on the shoulders of Raymond Cox because he is being paid in FULL to collect your garbage.
Now we get to the point: How is Raymond Cox being paid? Given the increased cost for fuel, the monthly subvention that the council receives is hardly enough to address the needs and demands of the residents of this expanding municipality. Raymond Cox must be paid and the PUP always ensures that Cox gets his FULL payment and so the council has had to make two loans from central government which goes directly to Raymond Cox.
The first loan for $225,000 was given to Cox in October 2006 and the second loan for $175,000 was approved on October 4,2007 and it will also go directly to Cox. All the council will get is a receipt from Cox indicating that the payment was made.
All of this is taking place, Dear residents of San Ignacio and Santa Elena, at a time when the deceitful Prime Minister, in imposing the 2% environmental tax, informed the nation that the revenue generated from this tax would go directly into paying for garbage collection and the national management of solid waste. Now we have a central government that is collecting millions of dollars annually from the environmental tax and instead of using it for its announced intended purpose, government is instead affording us "loans" to address the garbage collection needs in our various municipalities for which instant monthly subtractions are taken from the already meager subvention we get.
We trust therefore that you are seeing the spiteful and vindictive nature of this Said Musa/Ralph Fonseca regime and that you will join with the rest of the nation to completely rid ourselves of this cold and spiteful PUP government.
A new dawn is on the horizon as the new United Democratic Party Government has publicly made a firm commitment, not only to lower fuel prices but also to begin utilizing the environmental tax for its intended purpose. Better days are therefore ahead.
I Page 6 STAR Tel: 667-7827 Email: firstname.lastname@example.org Sunday, October 14, 2007
New Technoloqical C<
It's Cheaper And
By: Ray Auxillou
Falconview Backpackers Adventure Hostel, Hillview, Santa Elena, Cayo, Monday, October 8,2007:-
QUALITY PLUS LTD. (Tel 670 8434) is the new company operating out of Santa Elena Town. The company is owned by 42 year old, John Downard, formerly of La Democracia Village, where his family has a ranch and substantial acreage in cacao and other crops.
John's new company in Santa Elena Town, works in soil conversion. Currently John has a contract to convert the surface soil in the ponds of a hundred acre Tilapia project down on the coastal highway, into mini-micron size granules impervious to water leakage.
The technology he uses is reasonably BRAND NEW in the USA. It involves a man made artificial material using a pressure wave, resonance disintegration
It's More Effective
machine to produce a man made polymer called microsized-POLYACRYLYLAMID. You mix the polymer named Micro Pam with Gypsum and add water as the catalyst and it converts the three clay soils of Belize, the white Marl, the black clay and the red clay into loam soil for growing plants.
Clay is a real problem in Belizean soils, it is impervious to roots, oxygen and water. The clay soils get sticky, compact and kills off plants.
Current old technology uses, plows, harrows and discs to try and break up the clay, but any rain will usually make it a solid brick like gooey oily blob again, costing farmers a whole lot of money.
In John's case, he can change thirty acres of clay soil to nice fine loam granules in one day, or at least get the chemical process started.. Which also releases the nutrients molecularly bound up in the former clay soil as a bonus.
John has already done vegetable gardens for all the leading producers in the Mennonite community.
The process costs about BZ$340 an acre and involves spraying on the man made POLYACRYLAMID, followed by Gypsum and discing under. The first coating once wet with water as a catalyst breaks the clay eventually down into 100 micron size granules. To get finer and finer grains
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of soil, you repeat the process. "You can turn thick solid clay soil, impervious to plants exceptfor the first quarter inch, into two foot deep loam soilfor plant growing," says John.
If you used a disc, plow and harrow and added compost to do something similar, it would take tonnes of compost. In John's instantaneous process, the polyacrylylamid molecular chemical chain is the secret of the patented system. Something new in soil conversion since six thousand years, since the invention of the hoe and plow. A lot cheaper too!
Given that many Belizean clay soils have a lot of nutrients locked up molecularly, which cannot be used by farmers, the process releases the nutrients and cuts fertilizer applications by 90%.
In the USA, alfalfa fields that were rotated regularly to maintain fertility, treated in this new system have been continuously growing bumper crops of alfalfa for fifteen years now without crop rotation. A side effect is bumper increases of crop yields of 250%. The process changes the soil characteristics.
Quality Plus Limited can process five hundred to eight thousand pounds of soil per hour, depending on composition density.
The company in Santa Elena Town offers the following services:
a) soil enhancement b) erosion control c) soil water sealing as in Tilapia ponds d) palmetto processing and e) sugar and banana processing milling system.
The time has come for local farmers to put aside the roto tiller, tractor and disc plow. It's time to get modern and it's cheaper and more effective.
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Misunderstanding Between Honduran Banana Workers Lands Them Both In Dangriga Hospital
"A Special Place'
DANGRIGA TOWN, Stann Creek District, Thursday, October 11,2007:
Police were today summoned to the Southern Regional Hospital in Dangriga and were directed to the emergency room where they first encountered Felipe Centeno, 46, Honduran Farm Captain of Farm 15, suffering from a stab wound to the left side of chest and abrasion to the center of chest.
Also in the hospital at that same time was Jose Angel Hernandez, 47, Honduran Farm Hand also from Farm 15. Hernandez was found to be suffering from chop wounds to back of head, back of the right thigh and right foot.
The Farm Captain reported to
the police that at around 6.30 am on the same day, whilst on the Farm, he became engaged in a misunderstanding with a subordinate whom he knows as Jose Angel Hernandez.
As a result of the misunderstanding, the Farm Captain alleges that Hernandez pulled out a banana knife, attacked him and in the process stabbing him two times in the chest.
The Farm Captain informed that in self defense, he pulled out a machete and chopped Hernandez to the back of the head and on the right foot. Centeno and Hernandez are presently in stable condition at the hospital in Dangriga as police continues to investigate.
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Tel: ++ (501) 824-2093, 824-2800 Fax: ++ (501)824-3231
SMCU & WHAT WE DO
We offer virtually the same services as other financial institutions to help you achieve your goals.
For some Members, it may be the purchase of a car or a new home. For others, ifs a college education for their children or perhaps a comfortable retirement
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Credit Union Week 2007
15 20 October
Member Appreciation Day
Thursday 18 October 2007 Snacks & Drinks @ SMCU Offices
Primary School Elocution Contest
Wednesday 17 October 2007 Bedran Hall, San Ignacio Hotel 9.00 a.m. -12 noon
Thank you making us what we are today. At a credit union, every member is an owner
Visit us on the internet to learn more about our services & benefits
STAR Tel: 667-7827 Email: email@example.com
Sunday, October 14, 2007
GUESS WHO'S WINNING
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JWhat's left to WIN??
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Sunday, October 14, 2007 STAR Tel: 667-7827 Email: firstname.lastname@example.org
Let tHer Story *Be "ToCd
This column is being resurrected this week with the return, from study leave, of our counselor friend.
I am the mother of an eleven year old daughter, my brother passed away six months ago leaving behind a wife and two children, a fifteen year old daughter and a thirteen year old son. Two months after my brother's death, my sister-in-law decided that she does not want to live in Belize anymore so she departed for Los Angeles in June.
Before she left she asked me if I could take care of my niece and nephew just until she gets herself together. When I asked her how long it would take to get herself together she swore that it would take no longer than a year.
I told her that I would be glad to assist, especially since I believed that her children needed stability after suffering the loss of their father. My Sister, if I knew then what I know now, I would never have agreed to take on the responsibility of caring for these two children.
They have turned out to be my worst nightmare. For some reason we are not getting along. I don't know if it is because they are just plain rude and unreasonable or if it is because they are struggling to deal with the death of their father and now the loss of their mother, but things have not been good at all.
These children are spiteful and rebellious. They keep their rooms in a disorderly and dirty state and unless asked to perform certain
household chores they would sit around all day without lifting a straw.
Although my nephew is only thirteen years old, he insists on staying out late at night especially on weekends This situation is further compelled when he gets adamant and brings all kinds of questionable characters in and out of my yards and more recently my house even though I continuously ask him not to.
My Sister, I am really trying with these children, but they do not even appreciate the value of hard work and they constantly want money. They act like I have an unlimited supply of money that should be kept flowing in their direction.
Lately their behavior has gotten be much more than I can handle. I am beginning to feel like they do not appreciate what it is I am trying to do for them, which is provide them with some sense of stability.
I've let many things slide by without getting upset but how much more can I overlook? These are teenagers, they are not little children. It is simply common courtesy to wash your dishes when you are through eating, clean out the room that you occupy, help to sweep or mop and do whatever else needs to be done when you are staying with someone who is going out of their way to accommodate you.
My Sister, I am also the mother of one child. My eleven year old daughter is a completely different person from my niece and nephew. She sees what needs to be done in the house and she does her part. She is trained to be independent and to her money is a precious commodity because she knows how hard I work
* STAR HUMOR fl
The Fastest Thing In The World
Four Jamaicans were sitting at already. "
a table having a good time with a couple of beers atHode's Place last Saturday evening.
They were all "philosophising" on what was the fastest thing in the world.
Seymour said, "I tink de/assess ting in the world is a "THOUGHT", because before you can tink of it, it already thought."
Mildred said, "No man, the fassest ting in the worl' is a "BLINK", because before you can tink to blink, you dun blink
Lucy said, "No, no, the fassess ting in the world is hellectricity, because when you turn on de light switch, de hellectric travel farss-farss and the light com on before you done know it. Leroy said, "Allah-unu wrong!! The fastest ting in the whole world is diarrhea."
Everyone sey, "Diarrhea?" Leroy sey, "Yes man, cause las' night, ev'n before I could THINK, BLINK, or turn awn de HELLECTRIC lite, I done shit up mi self." !!!!
to put food on the table and clothes on her back.
Things are so bad in the house that it is reaching the stage where I am afraid that my niece and nephew will eventually influence my daughter in a wrong way. She is already asking questions like "why is it that I am the only one that is constantly doing the dishes?" "Ma, why do you insist that I keep my room clean when you do not demand the same from other persons living in the house?"
My Sister, I am really trying to be a good aunt but I am reaching the end of my rope. My sister-in-law hasn't called since she left and she has not sent even a dollar to assist with the care of her children. In fact, I am not even sure that she made it safely to Los Angeles.
In the meantime, it is like my niece and nephew have lost both parents. While they try to accept that their father is dead, they sit by hoping to hear from a mother who seems not to want to deal with them anytime soon. It
seems like her lack of interest is driving them right over the edge. No matter how much I do for them or how much I give them, I feel that the only person who can help them to heal faster is their mother. My Sister, I sit here day in and day out praying and hoping that my sister-in-law would just pick up a telephone and call because I feel that the time has come for me to tell her to either return to Belize or send for her children to join her wherever she is at. I feel like I have done my share and it is time for her to start acting responsibly.
I would really appreciate some advice on how to best deal with this situation. I do not want my niece and nephew to feel like I am trying to get rid of them and at the same time I know that if they were to remain in my care things would definitely start getting ugly because I cannot take anymore of their disrespectful and spiteful behavior.
Please help me my Sister. Love,Your Sister
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Page 10 STAR Tel: 667-7827 Email: email@example.com Sunday, October 14, 2007
Editor Of The Independent Refromer Writes
BY: Karla Heusner Vernon, Wednesday October 10,2007: Dear Readers of the Independent Weekly,
I owe you all an apology for the untimely termination of publication and for not informing you sooner that we were forced to close our doors. We had such high hopes when we launched in November of2006 that not only would we find avid readers such as yourselves, but advertisers who would be willing to step outside the partisan-driven economy of Belize and exert their own independence by supporting us.
Alas, only a few had the courage and strength to do it. The rest? Victims I suppose of a system of their own making, or at least their own perpetuation and fear.
I would like to thank our original investors and those who made contributions, large and small, to the start-up of the paper.
Thank you for having the faith in me and my husband Trevor to carry out the day to day work and to interact with the high quality, marvelous writers we were fortunate to have find us.
We are greatful for every cent you spent on the paper, and all your ideas and suggestions. Had we started this endeavor is some less dysfunctional society, I think you would have seen considerable return and we would be still printing today.
Unfortunately while Belize still has many "good" people residing there or communicating with her from abroad, she is no longer a "good country" in which to do business. Especially, as we have seen lately, the journalism business.
In June I told a reporter from the Miami Herald during a conference for Caribbean Journalists in Washington DC that things were "getting ugly" in Belize for people in my profession. There had been physical attacks, arrests and economic pressures brought to bear on a number of media house and individual reporters. One of our own writers died under strange circumstances. I did not know at that time the children of another of our writers had been threatened
I was not speaking out naively, I was fully aware that the article could bring even more pressure on my own head, on our heads I should say, than we were already feeling But, Ladies and Gentleman, I have never been one to let the possibility of ugliness stop me from speaking the truth. One of my biggest failings I suppose. Or my strengths, depending on how you look at it.
The attacks in recent weeks on other media colleagues, which I have witnessed second hand from the US, are deplorable but completely predictable. Belize has crossed the line from what it was for decades to
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something new and ugly. The free press is a threat to those who wish to retain power indefinitely.
I will not live under a dictator for a third term, however benevolent he and his partners in crime may appear to the outside world on the nightly news.
With the close of the paper, which was in fact my last stand against these people, I have removed myself from the country. I will not return, even for a visit, until these people are removed from office and would not consider living there again unless those who succeed them are not involved in the very things that have corrupted them: the drug trafficking, money laundering, debasement of Belizean women and children, degradation of hardworking Belizean men who spent their lives trying to develop the country.
I would like to publicly thank my husband for his Herculean efforts to keep what Rick Zahniser always dubbed the "Indy" going.
Our readers have no idea what weights he carried to ensure we were published and distributed each week, then every other week. I want to thank William Ysaguirre for his devotion to us amid all his other work for all the other media houses he supplies and for the warmth he displayed towards our family I
cannot single out any others by name for fear of offending too many, but I thank you all. Particularly my father who will never leave Belize; he has always been the type of captain who would go down with the ship. Or be the last one to bring the flag.
For the record, despite ANYTHING any of you may hear from any of the venomous detractors and paid political assassins who tried to pull us down before our first issue even hit the street: For the record, I, Karla Heusner Vernon, did not sell out. I have not accepted one single dollar for any interest I had in the paper, nor would I have done so. My children and I left Belize with our "hurricane suitcases" and nothing more. Except our memories. We are truly refugees. Thankfully, we have been welcomed into a wonderful community in the South. A place where slavery was adamantly defended once upon a time, but where people are now free to pursue their lives and dreams.
It is my fervent wish that Belizeans are able to return to such a state of emancipation. But I fear you may have many battles ahead before you find the courage to stand up for your own independence.
To my own readers, don't worry I won't stop writing. I may in fact write better if in a different genre from now on than I ever did before.
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Sunday, October 14, 2007 STAR Tel: 667-7827 Email: firstname.lastname@example.org
Marion Jones Caught By A Wider Antidoping Net
'Clean sports9 watchdogs are drawing on invoices, shipment records, and other evidence not related to testing regimens.
By: Peter Grier and Christa Case (ABS News) WASHINGTON, Tuesday, October 9, 2007:
Drug-cheat athletes beware:
You can lose your career, your trophies, and your reputation even if you don't fail an actual drug test.
That may be one vital lesson from the sad case of Olympian Marion Jones, say antidoping experts and officials.
New coalitions of law-enforcement and watchdog agencies are working to clean up sports, they say. They can draw on invoices, shipment records, and other evidence not related to testing regimens. Thus Jones's fall from grace may mark a new era in the fight to keep athletics free of performance-enhancing substances. "[Jones] has been competing for many years and had delivered many samples, and none of them tested positive," says David Homan, director general of the World Anti-Doping Agency in Montreal. "Now we have that extra armory of enforcement agencies, and that's probably the only reason that [she] confessed."
On October 8, Jones handed back five Olympic medals won seven years ago in the Sydney Games. In addition, she agreed to forfeit all winning results dating back to Sept. 1, 2000.
Marion's tearful admission of wrongdoing and apology
The US Olympic Committee will return the medals to the International Olympic Committee, which will decide what to do with them. After long denying she had ever used performance enhancers, Jones admitted Friday that she'd taken the designer steroid "The clear" from September 2000 to July 2001. "The clear" has been linked to BALCO, the lab at the center of the steroids scandal in professional sports.
Her admission came as part of a guilty plea to lying to federal investigators about using steroids. She will be sentenced early in 2008 and could get up to six months in prison.
Jones is now one of the highest-profile figures to be snared by the government's long-running BALCO investigation. Home-run king Barry Bonds has been linked to the case, and a grand jury is still
investigating whether he lied to federal investigators.
Bonds has denied ever knowingly taking steroids. He has testified that he believed a clear substance and cream given him by his trainer were flaxseed oil and an arthritis balm.
Jones has been dogged by rumors of steroid use for years. An ex-husband and an ex-boyfriend, both athletes, have been caught doping by sports authorities.
Yet Jones herself has not completely failed any drug test. In 2006, one test showed traces of the hormone-boosting sub stance EPO, butabackup "B" sample came up clear, allowing her at the time to claim vindication.
Her tearful admission of wrongdoing and apology to family and friends leave many questions unanswered. But her loss of medals and possible loss of earnings is a heavy blow, note antidoping officials. "[Her]punishment is in line with the rules but also with the offenses, says Travis Tygart, senior managing director and general counsel of the US Anti-Doping Agency.
And the fact that she was caught by law enforcement should be a warning, add sport officials. For the last two years, the World Anti-Doping Agency has been working with police and other government agencies to crack down on doping, notes the organization's director general.
Since World Anti-Doping Agency is a nongovernmental organization, countries cannot use its antidoping code to prosecute individuals involved in doping, explains Mr. Howman. But 67 countries have now ratified a UNESCO convention drawn up in 2005 that serves as a tool for governments seeking to curb doping in sport. Also, WADA is
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exploring cooperation with Interpol, which would allow police in any country with laws against trafficking in steroids to share information with each other.
Similar cooperation has led to the sanction of athletes based on evidence gathered outside urine and blood tests.
In Australia, for example, five athletes have been prosecuted for possession of human growth hormone (HGH) after being snared by a customs agency. With evidence collected by Italian police during a raid at the 2006 Turin Olympic Games, four Austrian cross-country skiers and two biathletes were issued lifetime bans early this year.
The cross-country skiers have appealed their cases. That incident marked the first time the International Olympic Committee had disqualified athletes for doping violations with positive tests.
Now, WADA is involved in Spain's Operation Puerto case, which uncovered an apparent blood-doping operation that was linked with numerous cyclists, including German star Jan Ullrich.
No athletes have been prosecuted under Operation Puerto, and the cases are still under appeal.
The challenge in such cases, notes Howman, is that in many cases, "prosecutors are not really that interested in the end users [athletes] They 're more interested in traffickers and doctors. "
In December 2003 Baseball player Barry Bonds testified before a grand jury about his relationship with Greg Anderson, his trainer and the owner of the Bay Area Laboratory Co-operative, also known as BALCO, the lab has been at the center of the steroids scandal in professional sports. Bonds testified that he did not know that certain products he was using were steroids. Bonds is still under investigation for potentially lying to federal investigators. (Wire services were used in this report.)
STAR Tel: 667-7827 Email: firstname.lastname@example.org
Sunday, October 14, 2007
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