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Jan 29, 2021

B.D.F. Celebrates 43rd Anniversary

Today, the Belize Defense Force held a ceremony at the Sir Colville Young Parade Square at Price Barracks in Ladyville to celebrate its forty-third anniversary.  The B.D.F. was formed on the first of January 1978 when the Belize Volunteer Guards and the Police Special Force amalgamated.  The parade is normally held the last Friday in January followed by an Open Day on the Saturday. However, this year, due to the COVID-19 restrictions, an Open Day cannot be held, and today’s parade was not opened to the public. News Five’s Hipolito Novelo reports.


Hipolito Novelo, Reporting

This month marks forty three years since the Belize Defence Force was formed. It was an amalgamation of the Belize Volunteer Guards and the Police Special Force.


Florencio Marin Jr.

Florencio Marin Jr., Minister of Defence and Border Security

“The standards that we had in our time in still being maintained by the young men and women. So we are very proud…”


…and proudly, members of the B.D.F. marched during a ceremonial parade to celebrate its forty-third anniversary. Shoulder to shoulder soldiers stood, donning their uniforms and bearing arms- poised and firm as they demonstrated the discipline and other skills they’ve learned in the Force. Those who have excelled were recognized today.


Steven Ortega

Brig. Gen. Steven Ortega, Commander, B.D.F. 

“It is very significant. It is milestone for us in that this time we acknowledge people who have set the foundation for the B.D.F., and we also showcased ourselves to the future who are expected to come in to the force. So it is a very joyous and happy time for us.”


As Prime Minister John Briceño has said, the B.D.F. has been a national stalwart, providing protection and peace of mind, as well as a distinct sense of patriotism to our young nation. And salute to the women and men of the B.D.F. because it is on them the nation calls on in time of dire needs.


Florencio Marin Jr.

“The Belize Defence Force has held their name up high that anytime the country has an emergency of some sort, who do they call on first? B.D.F.  They call on the B.D.F.  You know they we have a problem, B.D.F.”


While the B.D.F. has played a more humanitarian role in the past few months, Minister Marin says the plan is to enhance the B.D.F. presence along the border in the coming years.


Florencio Marin Jr.

“That we could have patrolling our borders much more. Right now as you know with all the constraints of the country we are helping out with the quarantine efforts, the B.D.F. is always called for many things like disaster mitigation. If we can get a little bit more resources to be on the border and maintain a more stronger presence along our border.”


Reporting for News Five, I am Hipolito Novelo. 

Viewers please note: This Internet newscast is a verbatim transcript of our evening television newscast. Where speakers use Kriol, we attempt to faithfully reproduce the quotes using a standard spelling system.

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