Archive for August 21st, 2009

Chamber launches Cayman leadership initiative

| 21/08/2009 | 3 Comments

(CNS): People over the age of 25 are being given the opportunity to take part in wide ranging and intense six month leadership programme run by the Cayman Islands Chamber of Commerce. The industry body said the course is designed to promote and enhance community leadership through a series of in-depth seminars and retreats that will focus on social, economic, business and political issues in the Cayman Islands.  (Left Jeff Brandes the driving force behind Leadership Cayman.)

Speaking at the launch of the initiative, Stuart Bostock, the Chamber President, said it was intended to help the men and women in the gain a greater understanding of the society in which they work and live. “This new initiative will help to develop the next generation of leaders in all areas of business and government,” Bostock said, adding that he himself hope to apply and be considered.

Jeff Brandes, the grandson of well known Caymanian businessman, Linton Tibbetts, and the driving force behind the project, said it would provide an opportunity for people to learn about areas in society outside of their own working arenas from leaders in different fields. He explained that each of the eleven specialist seminars would cover different aspects of society from government and diversity to diversity and financial services.

Brandes said that each seminar would be held at a different and relevant location, some of which people who have lived here all their lives may never have visited, such as Northward prison for the seminar on criminal justice or the studios of CITN for the media seminar. Local leaders and experts will host the seminars in a conversational format and give students the benefit of their specialised knowledge.

“It is really about connecting people, growing understanding of the different aspects that make up the community and inspiring them.  All of our lives run parallel; this is about interconnection” he added, saying it would also offer great orientation for people who are new to the community. “It’s essentially Cayman 101.”

The course costs $1,950 for Chamber members and $2,250 for others. The application is an essay format and application forms are now available. The deadline is 16 October and Brandes said 20 of the most suitable applicants will be selected for the first course which will run from January 2010 for six months.  Other than the minimum age of 25 the programme has no other restrictions and people of any nationality or age in any profession from the private or public sector are encouraged to apply. Seminars will typically take place on Thursday and applicants will need to attend nine of the eleven in order to pass the course. The opening retreat is the only mandatory event which will take place between 14-17 January with guest speaker Peter Hammerschmidt, a professor of Economics at Eckard College and expert in leadership issues.  

The Chamber said it was seeking title sponsors for the project but as yet there were no scholarships for the course and it hopes that those who join the programme will be subsidised by their employers.   

Continue Reading

Workers back on school site

| 21/08/2009 | 10 Comments

(CNS): Following a dispute between General Contractor Tom Jones International and labour sub-contractor East End Steel at the Clifton Hunter school site in which Caymanian workers were caught in the middle, the two parties said today (Friday 21 August) that they have resolved their disagreements. TJI and East End Steel said they had both met with members of government and reached an agreement in principle with regards to the provision of labour for the site and that Caymanians would be keeping their jobs.

According to workers who were protesting on the site earlier this week, TJI was trying to push out Caymanian labourers to replace them with cheaper overseas labour. The sub-contractors told NEWS27 earlier this week that TJI had told them that they wanted to lower the rate for their workers and had then sent an email terminating the contract accusing them of not paying health insurance and pensions.  Some labourers also said that they had been offered jobs directly by TJI cutting out their employer, East End Steel.

In a statement following the meeting, which was believed to have taken place at the Department of Employment Relations, between the two sides and government, Tom Jones International said that all Caymanian workers would remain employed at the Clifton Hunter site and that they had returned to work on 20 August.

With accusations flying back and forth before the mediation after the meeting, East End Steel issued a separate statement saying that it had since discovered that the accusations made against TJI that it was trying to replace Caymanians with ex-pats was not true. “There have been a number of allegations made with respect to Tom Jones International,” the statement read. “After reviewing the matter and meeting with Tom Jones International we have learned that these statements are not true and are unfounded. We are pleased to further confirm that having resolved our differences we will continue our relationship with Tom Jones International, who we believe to bean important and upstanding member of the Caymanian community.””

However, this is by no means the first time that TJI has faced such accusations. Almost since the work started on the Clifton Hunter Schools there have been accusations that Caymanians were not being employed and ex-pat labour was being shipped in. In April this year, North Side MLA Ezzard Miller, who was at the time campaigning for the seat he was to win as an Independent candidate, took up the cause of a number of Caymanian workers who were similarly caught in the middle of a dispute between TJI and another sub-contractor, Moises.

On that occasion TJI accused Moises of over-charging on sub-contracted hours and then stopped paying the firm, who were then in turn unable to pay their workers. On that occasion, TJI re-hired some of the Caymanian workers and at the time the DER requested that the Immigration Department halt the issuance of any new work permits to TJI until a complete investigation into the rehiring of all those workers was investigated. It is understood that all those who wanted to work on the site were eventually either re-hired directly or through other contractors. TJI has always insisted that it is employing a majority of Caymanian workers on the site.

Continue Reading

Police burn millions of dollars worth of drugs

| 21/08/2009 | 18 Comments

(CNS): Drugs with a potential collective street value of over $3.5 million were destroyed by the Royal Cayman Islands Police Service this morning (Friday, 21 August). Around 1000 pounds of ganja, 11.5 pounds of cocaine and 110 drug utensils were burned at the Cayman Islands Landfill site.The substances had been seized from locations across the Cayman Islands in various operations but were no longer required for evidence, police said. Drugs are required to be destroyed when they are no longer needed by the courts.

The drug burning took place under the watch of an independent Justice of the Peace, who checked the drugs as they left the storage location and re-checked them when they reached the burn site. Security is of the utmost importance during the burn, police stated, and a variety of officers from the Marine Unit, Drugs Task Force, Uniformed Support Group and the Exhibits Office were present. All material was destroyed in the burning, including the packaging or casing in which the substances were held.

The RCIPS works hard to tackle drug related crime and welcomes any information relating to the use or supply of illegal substances. Anyone with information can contact the Drugs Task Force directly on 949-7710 or their local police station or Crime Stoppers on 800-8477 (TIPS). All persons calling Crime Stoppers remain anonymous, and are eligible for a reward of up to $1000, should their information lead to an arrest or recovery of property/drugs.

Continue Reading

Fisherman’s body found

| 21/08/2009 | 7 Comments

(CNS): Updated 2;45pm — Police said this afternoon (Friday 21 August) that a body found on the shoreline of West Bay near the Boatswains Bay crematory west of Cobalt Coast was that of missing fisherman, Sisby Levert Barnett, aka ‘Junior’.  A member of the public found the body at around 12.35pm. Officers responded to the scene and, as is standard procedure, Scenes of Crime will process the area and a post mortem will be carried out.

Barnett was last seen yesterday morning when he had left his home address in Duxies Lane, West Bay, to go fishing. Emergency services were notified of his disappearance yesterday evening, by his brother and the marine unit began a search operation. Last night, his trailer was found at the North West Point Road launch ramp and earlier this morning, officers found Barnett’s boat overturned a short distance from the shore in the Barkers area along with a fuel tank and cooler which had washed up on the shoreline.

Police sent condolences to his family and friends.



Continue Reading

Results out for local scholarship applications for UCCI

| 21/08/2009 | 0 Comments

(CNS): Application results for scholarships to the University College of the Cayman Islands are now available and applicants may now contact UCCI registration staff for results, the college reports.
All students who have been approved for funding by the Ministry of Education may now register for classes. Students do not need to visit the Ministry offices and those who have been approved for funding by the Ministry of Education are able to register immediately. New students should contact the UCCI Registrar’s Office staff for the status of your application and to obtain your login information.

An advisor will be available for assistance with course selection.

Returning students who have been approved for continuation of funding by the Ministry of Education should be able to register for classes on line now. Students should consult their advisor for assistance with class selection. If you have any difficulty registering, please consult with UCCI Registrar’s Office staff immediately.

Any student who has difficulty with online registration is encouraged to contact UCCI registration staff for assistance. Phone: (345) 623-UCCI (8224), or e-mail:

Continue Reading

Bolt switches focus to relay gold

| 21/08/2009 | 0 Comments

(BBC): Usain Bolt is targeting a repeat of his heroics at the 2008 Beijing Olympics by completing a sprint treble at the World Athletics Championships in Berlin. Bolt, 23, has already won the 100m and 200m in world record times and now turns his focus to the 4x100m relay. "Last year the Jamaican girls were favourites to win and messed up the baton change," said the Jamaican. "I’m just hoping we get the baton round and win so I can get three gold medals and go home smiling." Bolt has set the World Championships alight with his displays in the Olympic Stadium, which have seen him become the first man to hold the 100 and 200m World and Olympic titles at the same time.

Go to article

Watch the video of the 200m (if they haven’t taken it down)

Continue Reading

Jamaican police make arrest in Cayman job scam

| 21/08/2009 | 10 Comments

(RJ): According to reports on Radio Jamaica, a St Elizabeth woman who allegedly defrauded several people, has been picked up during a police operation in Burnt Savannah early on Thursday morning. The Black River Police said the woman is alleged to have collected more than $250,000 from individuals to whom she had promised jobs in the Cayman Islands. When the jobs were not forthcoming and the money not returned, reports were made to the police. The Black River Police are advising individuals who have paid money to the woman to visit the station.

Go to article

Continue Reading

CI funds ignored lawsuits

| 21/08/2009 | 0 Comments

(Bloomberg): The trustee liquidating Bernard Madoff’s business told a judge that two offshore hedge-fund firms accused of profiting from the fraud are ignoring his lawsuits seeking a total of $230.7 million in damages. Trustee Irving Picard asked the U.S. Bankruptcy Court in Manhattan to file default notices against the Cayman Islands-based Primeo Fund and Bermuda-based Alpha Prime Fund Ltd., court papers show. Two offshore firms sued earlier for a total of $1.2 billion also have ignored Picard’s lawsuits.

Go to article

Continue Reading

Thriller writer to promote new novel

| 21/08/2009 | 0 Comments

(CNS): Cayman will be welcoming New York Times Bestselling Author Eric Jerome Dickey to the island next week when the writer will make a special appearance at Books & Books on Wednesday evening to discuss and sign copies of his summer novel, Resurrecting Midnight (Dutton Books). Dickey worked as a computer programmer, a middle school teacher, actor, and stand up comic before becoming a full-time novelist and hitting the best seller list.

He is the author of twelve novels, including the bestsellers Genevieve, Drive Me Crazy, Naughty or Nice, The Other Woman, and Thieves’ Paradise. Due to venue space and the author’s popularity tickets will be required for the book discussion. These are now available at Books & Books with the purchase of any Eric Jerome Dickey book. Tickets are limited so stop by Books & Books today to get yours. If you do not get a ticket you can still meet the author; the book discussion will be immediately followed by a book signing, which is free and open to the public.

This event which starts at 7:30pm on Wednesday 26 august is part of the Books & Books International Visiting Author Series, which is generously sponsored by Ogier and Sunshine Suites.


Continue Reading

New team to head up pirates’ last stand

| 21/08/2009 | 12 Comments

(CNS): According to reports on CITN Cassandra Hibbert has been appointed as the new director of Pirates Week, replacing Dave Martins. Although announcements regarding changes to the long standing festival by the Leader of Government Business, McKeeva Bush have caused considerable controversy, Hibbert says that the 2009 festival will be going ahead as planned with the full pirate theme. West Bay community activist, Bernie Bush as also been appointed as deputy director of the skulduggery.

Go to video

Continue Reading