Taylor denies AG decision was due to controversy

| 17/04/2010

(CNS): As was expected, the governor has denied that Dan Duguay’s contract was not renewed because of his openness with the media and his controversial reports. Duncan Taylor has said that he chose the new auditor general based on his interview and it had nothing to do with the current incumbent Dan Duguay’s frankness. He denied that the premier had any influence over the decision as Taylor said he had not consulted the premier, though he admitted that he was aware of the comments McKeeva Bush had made about Duguay in the media.

 “When I first arrived here I said that a good auditor would produce some irritation for people,” the governor told Cayman 27 on Friday. “An Auditor General has a very important role to play in holding government departments and government organisations to account but also a role to help them develop and do their jobs more effectively. The fact that some of those reports were controversial did not come into the equation when we were considering who to appoint. I would be quite surprised if the new auditor general, once he has settled down and is doing his own reports, if they don’t turn out to be controversial as well.”
The governor said one candidate of the final four, whose identity will be revealed soon, was the strongest of the short-listed candidates, but the quality of Duguay’s reports were the reason why he made it to the final four. The governor said that the person who has been selected has twenty years experience of government audit and that people will see when he comes that he is a very good choice. He added that Duguay had done a very good job

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Comments (34)

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  1. Anonymous says:

    Your Honable Governor,

    You simply disappoint the people of the Cayman Islands and your have lost their respect when you have only been in office for five minutes. If this is a sign of what we can expect for the next five years, pity help Cayman.

    The man was doing a great job, so why not renew the contract – the answer to the question that you will not answer is "Politics" before honesty, good ethics and transparency.

    You are all forgeting a few important facts and that is that not only was Dan Duguay respected, appreciated and admired by the general population of the country, he was a totally dedicated man and one of the most focused and hardest working individuals you could imagine.

    Any new AG will take at least a year to settle into the job and get to know how the country works. My bet is that the new AG will never be heard of in the press making any comment and his reports will be a gloss over.

    I hope I am wrong.

  2. Anonymous says:

    I think it is too bad that Dan got hurt.

  3. Frequent Flyer says:

    But the governor hasn’t answered the question… If Dan has done a ‘very good job’, why is he being removed?? Isn’t every employer required to have a reason to fire someone?

    I feel we should demand a reason, from the governor, why Dan is being replaced.  I’d like to hear it straight from his mouth.

    This whole thing reeks!!! of big fish.

    Cayman look out for all the pawns to be put in place. All the mouth pieces…

    • Anonymous says:

      Frequent Flyer: When someone – in any country in the world – comes to the end of a FIXED TERM (get the emphasis?) contract and it is not renewed, they are not being fired. They are not being rehired.

       Caymanians don’t understand this because they are hardly ever fired in government and their contracts are such that they exist in employment for life – just because they are Caymanian (which is a major part of the uselessness of many civil servants). So when employment for people like Mr Duguay comes to an end it seems like firing. It’s not. If all Caymanian civil servants were on two year contracts, the performance would be better, much better. It was suggested as part of the reform process a decade ago but of course was shot down by senior civil servants who knew they would be up you know what creek without a paddle as their performance was then and is now (for the couple that remain unretired) so piss poor and unaccountable, despite the astronomical salaries they are getting and in one case additional allowances.

      You can produce all the Miller reports in the world but until Caymanians openly and honestly confront the nonsense that goes on in the upper levels of the civil service and statutory authorities with staggering salaries, allowances and other benefits, the general public will never know how they are being shafted. And those of us who know, must skulk in anonymity.

      Ah so it go.

      • Frequent Flyer says:

        As a Caymanian, I understand that. 

        Okay, so let me reword it then.

        If he is doing such a good job, why replace him?

        Are you trying to say that you think after things have been brought to light and he is replaced, it doesn’t strike you as quite "convenient" (notice quotation marks)

        There are certainly more contracts extended and renewed for those that are doing a good job, than replaced. I’d say renewals outnumber those that are replaced because their contract is out for doing a good job, not just because they are Caymanians.

        But thanks anyway Anonymous

         

         

        • Anonymous says:

          Frequent Flyer: "There are certainly more contracts extended and renewed for those that are doing a good job than replaced".

          I acknowledge the truth of your statement. Fair comment. The problem I think is that it is the posters to this site (plus Wendy!!) whose view of Mr Duguay’s conduct and (their perception) of his level of performance has elevated him to a level of appreciation not shared by his employer, the civil service, and to be more specific, the Governor. Sure, Mac doesn’t like him. So what? Mac can never like Auditor Generals as a class of employee. As he sees them, they get in the way "of me doing tings". It will be the same with the next one as it was with the last one Nigel Esdaile.

          Ah so it go.

  4. John Evans says:

    What most ofyou contributors (and probably Dan Duguay himself) are not aware of is that the seeds for this decision were sown a long time ago and recently fertilisied by manure from the UK.

    Just over two years ago I was asked by my then employer to do some digging into possible conflicts of interest within the AG’s office, the request was made directly to me with the Assigments Editor, Lyndon Martin, being kept in the dark about it.

    Like most similar requests it came as the result of  either a tip off or a complaint. In essence it was very similar to the malicious ‘whispering campaign’ against Stuart Kernohan that led to Operation Tempura. It was soon quite clear that we were (not for the first time) being asked to do someone else’s dirty work and the motivation was simply annoyance at the fact that the AG’s office has dug up a bit more dirt on people who felt they were untouchable.

    When I left my successor apparently also took the request on board and also came up dry. The story had no foundation.

    However, around the same time Mr Duguay was under fire from within the government for employing two Canadians to conduct value-for-money probes and for his reporting of $1.5 billion government accounting arrears. It is very hard to believe that all this was unconnected.

    As far as I know that was the end of it for a while but the release of the AG’s report on Operation Tempura opened up a whole new can of worms.

    As everyone knows the report pulled few punches and it was seized by at least one national newspaper in the UK, which linked it with other material they had to generate a story causing acute embarrassment to the Metropolitan Police, the FCO and, by implication, the Governor.

    In the UK there has been a determined reaction to the press report with the finger of guilt, at least in part, for the adverse publicity being pointed at the AG’s report. Although not actually contained in the AG’s report, one thing his investigation did was give the press over here solid links between members of SPIT and the private contractors brought in from the UK. The report has also indirectly exposed contradictions between statements made by senior figures involved in Operation Tempura/Cealt and the truth. To say the report was unpopular would be an understatement and I am certain that there has been substantial criticism directed at the author, who was simply doing his job. 

    The bottom line on this is that there is a strong belief that the best way to deal with bad news is to kill the proverbial messenger. I’m not blaming anyone for that because the UK is exactly the same. What I would suggest is people look at what is has done over here and debate whether or not you want the same to happen to Cayman.

  5. Anonymous says:

    CNS

    I can’t help but respond…

    You need to implement a new policy. If someone makes a claim, the claim should be true or at least with credible source. If someone makes a comment that is subjective or opinionate – that your service does not have evidential backing, the comments should be highlighted in yellow or red so people would know what is backed by facts and what isnt.

    This is very important. Claims and back-up claims should be differentiated to viewers. I love your freedom of speech policies, but I am hearing alot of BULL about the Premier, Governor, and AG. Believe me or not, claims that are repititous are imbedded in people’s minds as true.

    This will definitely ruin the image and reputation of CNS as being a credible news outlet. I think comments should be screen like this. If you don’t believe me, look at Fox Nation forums and see the crap that’s on them, and then look at their ratings as credible news outlet. Fox is notorias for allowing serious liars to be at large.

    CNS: Sorry, the comment forum is an exchange of ideas and opinions. It is all subjective. Assume all comments are flagged yellow for "opinionated, not necessarily backed by evidence".

    • Anonymous says:

      CNS is doing an excellent job.

      CNS give a voice to the voiceless, and that was a long time in coming.

      CNS you are a fantastic informative media, let freedom ring loud and long.

      We will not be silenced.

  6. GM says:

     Too late Sir! The honest people here have seen something here with this situation that will not fade from memory anytime soon no matter who you bring to replace him. Confidence and trust has taken a severe blow and it not only about Mr Dugay as a person it’s about what has been achieved and accomplished and it about the Truth. No type of spin in the media is going stop the light of transparency from shining now on this situation.

  7. Anonymous says:

    Anyone seen the AG’s latest report on the Gov finances yet?

    Was this  another way to stop the negative reports from reaching the public’s ears?

    The transparency of a brick wall

  8. Anonymous says:

    Don’t be fooled to think that His Excellency the Governor is not the ultimate power in the Cayman Islands, for those who think not be assured that he is. The Governor does not answer to the Premier it is the other way around. 

    The Governor is a leader and this is what he is doing so please people allow him to do his job, he is quite capable of doing his job.

  9. sandy says:

    Clever…

    It is not our politicians that want this man out as much as the Governor and FCO. He step on someone’s toes over there – not here

  10. Anonymous says:

    Cayman does not have an American style system although we do have a Premier who shows every indication of wanting to be El Presidente..

    We are supposed to have a neutral civil service including the Auditor General. You are right to the extent that our Beloved Leader has taken it upon himself to politicise the civil service and to ensure that those who are supposed to be the watchdogs in our government are muzzled and disposed of when they show any indication that they just might offer an insight into what is going on in the shadows.

  11. Anonymous says:

    What a fable!  Well Mr. Taylor, we all HOPED you’d provide a balance to the present dictatorial government and stand up for good governance, transparency and accountability.  HOWEVER, you appear to have capitulated to the big Mac.  What a very sad day for Cayman.

     
  12. Anonymous says:

    Duncan Taylor you and your panel are cut from the same frabric as McKeeva.  He warned you not to get in his way, when you came here and you are scared of him, so you have decided to join him.  Mr. Dan Duguay was an AG for the people of these Islands.  He exposed the dirty Government and he was Neutral in all his decisions.  He was not swayed by any party, but you just come here and already you are taking sides.  You continue to be on the side of a corrupt Government and see how long you are going to last here too.  Did you knew that the 2 Caymanians you had on your panel were UDP?  I really wondered who recommended them to you? The people of these Islands know better, though.  You sleep with dogs, you will get fleas.

  13. Anonymous says:

    One must call b.s. when you read it.  If the AG is doing his job fairly, there should be no reason for a change.  Regardless of the individual’s credentials who was hired to replace Mr Duguay, it will take them a lengthy period of time to figure out the levels of deception that is the Cayman Islands government (I’m certain this is part of the rationale behind the move). However, the current AG was doing his job exceptionally well and everyone knows this to be fact.  But in the political realm of the new governor, it’s easier to makes nice with the premier early on than further on down the road. 

    Duguay is clearly the early sacrifice (which is sad), but someone had to appease the monster that runs the political machine.  Mr Taylor — that pound of flesh you’ve offered will not satisfy our premier; for he shall also require you to give up the police commissioner and other concessions if you’re not careful.  Do not let it go beyond this. 

    Good luck to you Dan!  You can rest assured you’ve done your job, but have fallen victim to sheer politics.

  14. slowpoke says:

     So, inquiring minds want to know, did H.E. get to be Governor of the Cayman Islands, based on a single interview?

  15. Anonymous says:

    I will have to agree with the Governor and his new choice for Auditor General whoever this person may be.

    Do not get me wrong, I think Dan has done a great job over the last 6 years but we all have to admit…Would he be able to get any real work done with all the controversy and name calling being flung at him?  This would be a total distraction to him and his work as he would be too busy defending himself rather than doing any work. 

    As with any government, People must come and go.  Look at the USA for example. Anytime there is a new President there is a complete new administration.  So I think 6 years is a long time and now time for a fresh face to take up the mantle!!

    • Anonymous says:

      Sorry, Dan does not have to defend himself.

      His work stands on their own two feet to defend him and we appreciate that.

      So sorry that we have such jerks in power.

  16. What??????????? says:

    What did you expect him to say?

    Did you want him to come out and admit he is another "Mac cronie".

    • Anonymous says:

      We know that, the FCO is playing the Good Cop / Bad Cop game again.

      The last Gov was the Bad Cop, Gov Taylor has been ordered by the FCO to be the Good Cop to Mac.

      Old Colonial game, new players that is all!

      Do not be fooled.

  17. Twyla Vargas says:

    I trust His Excellency Governor Taylor’s words, he seems to be a man of high integrity and truth.

    • Anonymous says:

      Just  curious – what experience, encounters or facts are you basing your judgement on?

      Not saying that he doesn’t have hight integrity etc, but I would say it is still a bit early to come to a conclusion on that matter……..

  18. Anonymous says:

    Governor Taylor appears to be weakened by the politicians here that shades him and the Foreign and Commonwealth Office in a negative light. He does not want to open a can of worms over UK interest and Cayman interest. So the Governor is just being strategic and don’t to be blunt like Governor Jack was. 

    He is softly treading his grounds – meanwhile, he tolerates the work of a new Anti-corruption team to finish what they started. This will difinitely hurt Cayman’s image and the economy. Some companies and clients they have already caused to move out of the Cayman Islands, because of the issues of Corruption and threats of making us into a tax-revenue center. Ultiamtely, if they are successful – as the clients center back to the UK or US, they will help replenish the UK and US economies with their taxes as was pre-plan by Obama and Gordon Brown.

    This is the game folks.

  19. Anonymous says:

    I want to believe you GOV but I got my doubts .We know who MAC is ……

  20. Anonymous says:

    Thank you H.E. for clarification, that’s exactly what I thought the situation to be because the panelist who carried out the interviews where gentlemen of the highest calibre, therefore their selection would have been on what was before them.  Excellent job!     

  21. Pro Caymanian says:

    WHATEVER!!!!!  He’s also teamed up with the Premier!!!

    Why dont they just put whats left of us CAYMANIANS on a boat and send us off to find somewhere else to call HOME!!!

    I am sooooooo sick of this $HIT that is going on in MY COUNTRY!!!!

     

  22. Anonymous says:

    Denials plus Platitudes do not equate to any assurance that the transparency which Mr. Duguay’s reports provided will be permitted to continue. In fact they produce exactly the opposite.

    Conspicuously absent:

    1) any suggestion that the new Auditor General will ever be allowed to interact with the media so that the people are actually informed in any meaningful way, and

    2) any suggestion that the new Auditor General’s reports will ever be seen by the people on any kind of timely basis.

    Now I remember what a hollow ring sounds like.

  23. Anonymous says:

    "You’re on my turf now,"  is what I believe you were told.  Sorry you folded so quickly.  We had high hopes for your uncompromising integrity.

  24. Scrooge McDuck says:

    "I won’t work with him Governor!!!  He’s a roadblock!!!!"

    "But McKeeva he has the public’s support look at the opinion poll on CNS…"

    "I don’t care!!!!  He’s too open with the facts and so is CNS.  CNS sucks!!  How am I supposed to run this government if I can’t surprise people!!!"

    "McKeeva, people don’t like to be surprised except at Christmas and on their birthdays."

    "Well they better get used to it."

    "So you won’t change your mind?"

    "I change my mind all the time!!!"