Premier details overseas trips

| 14/05/2010

(CNS): As a result of the much publicised Freedom of Information request made in February, Cayman News Service can now reveal that the premier spent just 161 days including weekends in the Cayman Islands between being elected to office in May 2009 and the end of February 2010. For just under 50% of the time he was travelling overseas attending a variety of meetings, conferences and TIEA signings, as well as the Miss Universe Pageant and the Winter Olympics. Revealing his full itinerary at a press briefing on Thursday, McKeeva Bush criticised CNS for making the request saying it had wasted time and as minister of tourism and finance as well as premier he had to travel.

Bush added that he was not fond of flying and had made every attempt to keep his travel to a bare necessity as he didn’t enjoy spending time away from family. “A part of my duty as the premier is to ensure that the business of the country is conducted, and our interests overseas are well represented. I know of too many instances when Cayman was not represented at the table and we took stick for it,” he said, citing the European Directive as something thrust on the jurisdiction because of the failure of leadership to be at the table.

He added that his travels had benefited the islands, including the successful removal of Cayman from the OECD grey list and the bond offering with HSBC, which received a very good return.
However, criticisms had been made of the premier’s travels in the wider public as he was away from the island at a time when there was a very worrying spike in violent crime. Bush was overseas when a number of the gang related shootings took place, including the murder of four-year-old Jeremiah Barnes, who was killed at Hell Gas station in West Bay.  
During June 2009 the premier was away between 4-21 June when he visited the UK, France and the United States to sign TIEAs, attend the Caribbean Tourism meeting andan OECD meeting. In July he was gone for two weeks in Paris, Germany, Netherlands, New York & the United Kingdom again. In three separate trips in August he visited the United States and the Bahamas. In September the premier spent a week in London before heading back there in November as well as the states and Asia, when he was away for three weeks. From the beginning of December until Christmas the premier was away visiting India, Dubai and Bali. Bush then headed to Miami in January where he was again in February before heading up to Vancouver, Canada for the Winter Olympics.
The request, which was made by the owner of CNS Nicky Watson, took almost three months as the ministry said it had been difficult to collate the information and had requested an extension on the 30 day period given to comply with the request under the FOI law. On receipt of the request the letter accompanying it said the ministry was “pleased to grant … access to the records.”
However, it appeared on Thursday afternoon at the televised live press briefing that the premier was not particularly pleased and accused CNS of wasting government time on a request that was of no value.
Following the overt criticism of the request and the Freedom of Information Law in general, which was broadcast on both Radio Cayman and Cayman27 and later picked up by the BBC, the Information Commissioner Jennifer Dilbert pointed out that the request was legitimate and illustrated how the law should work. “To hear the premier list his travels in detail at the press briefing on Thursday, 13 May 2010, was very heartening indeed and shows clearly that FOI is alive and well in Cayman,” she said.
Although the premier had publicly revealed the FOI requester by name, the CNS owner had never sought at any time to conceal her identity or that CNS had made the request. Under the law anyone making a request can, however, remain anonymous, something which also angered the premier.
Dilbert said a person does not have to identify themselves when making a FOI request.  “The reasoning behind this is that a person can request a record and be free from any negative repercussions that might occur as a result of being identified as the person asking for a record,” she said.
The very public criticism of CNS made by the premier served to illustrate why some people may wish to remain anonymous. Many other countries allow anonymous requests and in a country as small as the Cayman Islands, the IC observed that the ability to remain anonymous may be indispensable.
 “Also, the Law does not permit the public authority to ask for a reason or rationale behind the request which further ensures that records are released completely and uncensored,” Dilbert explained.
She added that the foundation of democracy is based on the premise that the people elect their government, and therefore that government is responsible to its people. “FOI allows people to get involved in the decision-making processes of government and better understand the ‘how’ and ‘why’ behind the choices it makes. FOI legislation has been adopted by over 85 countries worldwide which should be an indication of its value and need,” she said.
Bush said that responding to CNS had taken many hours as the information was not readily available. He said the FOI cost the country a lot as it tied up civil servants and the way that information was asked without saying what good it was for was not good for Cayman.

 

Category: FOI

Comments (144)

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  1. Person says:

    Can someone please tell me what business this country has in Bali? I am having a genuine WTF moment here. Everything that is happening is completely outrageous.

    • Traveller says:

      Bali is in Indonesia and a big tourist spot. I cannot see what Macbigger was doing there on behalf of the government.

  2. Nick Quin says:

    Who is Richard Parchment?

    • Afraid to Strap on a Pair Also says:

      Senior Political Assistant of Monetary Authority General Counsel.

  3. Anonymous says:

    Well It does show one thing Our so called leader doesn’t really want anyone to know where he goes because, since he is in public office he is now extremely private. The public eye must now hire a private eye to find out who what where and why. FOI does mean Freedom of Information, and so just as he had to declare his holdings in the register of interests, well obviously he should have to disclose where he goes because his travels and associations, are our interests since he "WORKS" in our interest. But work is such a strong word my friends for lip service, does work miracles in the land of the blind. Bloggers are now a threat to government due to the fact that at times, they actually reveal the honest truth about politicians. At times the bloggers are the only hope for a wandering population desperately seeking proper information. And here I end highlighting one last point. Our politicians love propaganda, they love to spread it, they use it to polarize, to poison the minds of the electorate and clearly when hit where it hurts those politicians will make direct threats to the public. It is a bit funny but an elected leader who goes on the defensive, threatening with fines because the public now knows where he was for the first section of his term should be considered an enemy of every citizens freedom. So carry on there oh leader for in the end we all understand clearly. "All animals are equal but some are more equal than others."

  4. Anonymous says:

    Funny how this leader is now concerned about the utilisation of Civil servants to answer FOI requests with ‘many hours’ of work and yet him and his party displaced top civil servants on full salary because he chose others.  For months these civil servants have been paid their BIG salaries with nothing to do!

  5. Anonymous says:

    For the record. Big Mac was on the Cayman Airways flight back from Miami this morning and I can confirm that him and his entourage were comfortably sitting up in business class whilst the peasants that pay his wages were back in the cattle truck that is economy class.

    Oh and he got waved straight through customs without having his bags searched. Glad to see we live in a XXXXX island where only certain classes of people are searched and made to justify that they have not imported items over the duty free 350 dollar threshold.

    • Anonymous For Cause says:

      Not only are many of the past public utterances of the Premier inappropriate for any high office, they are also very damaging to the Cayman Islands  He began with telling the whole world that we were bankrupt and automatically put us in an even weaker position when dealing with external parties.  

      Now 12 months later he still hasn’t done anything about the economy except increase fees and drive away legitimate business.  So with no answers, he attacks some members of the press, threatening our freedom of our expression and further damaging the international reputation of our country.  Very effective, if your aim is to work against the Cayman Islands.  

      To his supporters inside and outside of the UDP: how long will you allow and even support this man to ruin our country!!!???? 

       

    • Anonymous says:

       I believe everyone should have their bags searched regardless of who they are. How else are we going to stop the importation of alcohol, drugs and guns?

    • DMA says:

      Was this flight full? I hope it was for your sake because of the following.

      Don’t be surprised if XXXX requests a passenger list of this flight and have you put on a watch list after finding out who you are. If you are Caymanian you are on the safe side. If you are an expat…..good night. Sad but very realistic.

      • Anonymous says:

        sorry but if you’re Caymanian and not a supporter of the UDP, then you are not safe!!

  6. Anonymous says:

    How much concessions did he get on these trips? Did he take his personal secretary, his personal chef, his personal housekeeper, his wife, his family members and his personal friends?  He is only the Premier of these 3 small Islands for Goshsake!! He is not the Queen of the UK, He is not the President of the USA, so the question I have to ask…What is his mindset?  Does he think he is BIGGER than them or is he on their same level?  MacKeeva I do not like calling names, but you were ELECTED by the people, you WORK for the people, the PEOPLE have the right to know the truth about YOUR travels.  They pay YOUR salary and all your personal connectors salaries, so WHY do you get angry and start threatening people and companies when asked a simple question?  What is it YOU are hiding? Are YOU truthful to your people?  Remember all public figures are an open book, there should be no secrets…God is watching YOU!!!!

  7. Anonymous says:

    Experienced International Traveller.

    Anyone who travels extensively knows that the information provided by our leader is another manipulation of the truth and the real facts of just how much time he has been off the island not attending to the business of Cayman.

    He has not included travel time and we suggest that Immigration provides the dates of his comings and goings to give us the true picture of his abscence from the country.

    Why can the leader not deligate as any good and well experienced business manager would in the real world of business.

    McKeeva, you may fool the people some of the time, but we are not stupid to be fooled all the time.

  8. Anonymous says:

    Would you bloggers kindly leave Mack alone.

    He is doing a fantastic job with respect to splintering his Party.

    Soon he will havesplintered his Party so far that we will have lots of Independents and possible other parties to choose from.

    He will then just dry up and fade away leaving us to choose who will run our government.

    As a result of Macks self destruction I forsee our government being made up of a coalition which will return us to the old respectful days.

    We can choose who we want without any party alliance and make up our government of the right people.

    Mack is in self destruct mode. Let him do it as fast as he cares to.

    • Anonymous says:

      I understand that julie was on the radio last talking about her trip to Honduras.She apparently is going to bring in people from there to work in cayman Islands. Also fruits from that Country. I wonder if she cant see or what. XXXXXXX Capt Mose please open your eyes and do something to help us and groom that partner well for the next election, we know that he will do well. There is quite a few Bracers who listened last night and is very upset including her very own supporters and will not stand for this. Dont you think that we have already brought in too many of the wrong people that has helped in destroying us. We cannot have a Country of only poor people. Almost all of the English and the American  rich has left leaving us with no jobs and apartments that cant even be rented. Imagine now when our poor little $3000 AND UNDER SALARYS HAVE TO BE CUT, this is not going to affect her any. Cayman Bracers are angry about this and in three years time we will take care of all this foolishness.

       

       

      • Cut the crap says:

        CI$3000 per month poor?  Garbage.  Stop the self-pitying nonsense!

        CI$3,000 is the eqivalent to an annual salary of $70,000 in the United States once taxes are taken into account.

        Since when is that poor?

         

        • Anonymous says:

          We are not in the U.S. $3,000 p/m in Cayman is "poor". It is all about purchasing power rather than absolute figures.

    • James says:

      I hate the party system, PPM, UDP, et cetera…

      Never did like to foolishly "VOTE STRAIGHT" a row of candidates I didn’t know anything about! That is so dumb!

      Cayman was never like this before!

      • Anonymous For Cause says:

        To say that you "hate the party system" is like saying that you hate organised sport because some fans misbehave.  Just like the mis-behaving fans in organised sports, those who mis-behave in organised politics are the real culprits.

  9. Anonymous says:

    Can we get some new news (good news) on here. I am so tired of all of this negative crap!!

    I think we have beaten this one to death..Is there anything good happening in the Cayman Islands.

    We had "Do Something  Cayman" this week end.  A very positive and uplifting experience for many many people. Why can’t we hear about this and other positive things happening in our community?

    Nicky..it’s time to lift our spirits with some good and positive news!!!

    • Anonymous says:

       I agree that the news may be depressing, but it is a wake up call to the current situation. "Do Something Cayman" is exactly what situations like this remind us that there is something to be done. You want upbeat news- make upbeat news that is worth being genuinely proud about. 

      Do not get me wrong, I believe the initiative is inspiring, but there are matters at hand that need to be attended to and they will not be solved by holding hands and singing Kumbaya. There will be bad news when bad things happen- deal with it. We’re not living in some utopia where our news will be grand. this is our future and our lives we are talking about, accept it.

    • Looking for Mr. Goodnews says:

      The bad news is…….the wrong people were elected.

      The good news is……the others weren’t any better.

      I hope this cheers you.  Sort of

  10. Anonymous says:

    Sounds like Mac should have taken another 150 days off Island.

  11. Dnt4getMe says:

    It’s so sad this PPM / UDP thing is still going on.  The country is down the tube and all you see is people picking sides and bashing each other. Take a look from the outside to see how rediculous it all is. 

    If you support an elected official because you agree with their practices is one thing, but to blindly follow a side is quite another. I guess if nothing else, you can say Caymanians are loyal, but I don’t see how any reasonable person can agree with this man.  He publicly bashes everyone who disagrees with him and tries to bring them to an end. The only reason to kick up such a fuss is if there is something to hide.

    Anyway, this is a sad story because this was a reasonable request that the people SHOULD know. The FOI sevice from my understanding is under utilized anyway so why not ask? Does it take away from addressing other requests for information? 

    As someone mentioned earlier, these are our elected officers.  You’re paying them, why wouldn’t you want to know what it is you’re paying for.  But for as long as the masses support this XXXXX, I don’t see much changing.

    This act of hiding as much as possible from the public is a rut that one day Cayman will get out of, one way or another.

  12. Anonymous says:

    I heard that The Chuckster has resigned from the PPM and is forming his own party…..say it ain’t so !

    • Anonymous says:

      The Chuckster XXXXXX.

      He has personal gripes with the Premier that go back a long way.

      He wont attract my attention knowing some of the stories behind his and Macks feud.

      I wasted my vote on him in the last election but would never vote for him again.

      Maybe he could come straight with the voters and tell them what his problems with the Premier is.

      While I wont hold my breath waiting for this to happen I do have many unanswered questions I would like answered.

  13. Anonymous says:

    No one is any bigger supporter of the UDP than myself. I voted for them as did all of my family in West Bay. But I must say, that I’m appauled at the comments made by the Premier to increase CNS operating licence from $5,000 to $100,000 CI, all because of a legitimate enquiry that was made under the FOI law.

    Me, you, the press and even "Mickey Mouse" for that matter, is entitled to make an enquiry in regards to the way in which government operates and spends our money. Additionally, we also pay for that information which is provided. Government also needs revenue, for which these enquiries under the FOI law, allows money to go into the government’s treasury. (small amount or not, it’s revenue) 

    If you try to silence the press or the populace then you are trying to rule with an "Iron Fist" which is unacceptable.

    Mr. Premier, CNS deserves an apology and so does the Cayman Islands !!!    

     

  14. UDP supporter says:

    Can someone please explain to me how such a ridicule person, with views of politics that ressemble a dictatorship and a tendency for gaffes, still be the leader of his party?

    Surely, there is someone within the UDP that could rise to the opportunity and push him aside. How hard could that be, given Bush’s track record over the last several months.

    If he stays in charge, the whole party will lose at the next election. IF YOU ARE A UDP SUPPORTER, YOU NEED TO PRESSURE THE UDP TO FIND A NEW LEADER! Otherwise, this party is done.

    • Anonymous says:

      I heard the UDP party members came together. I wonder what was the outcome?

      • Anonymous says:

        They agreed with their leader!!!

        • Mr. Praline says:

          That is because they are mainly "yes" men, thugs and hangers-on who know that siding with Getting Bigger Again Mac is a route to money or power.

          Good – let them try to force through the "Criticise Mac Tax" it will be their downfall.

    • Anonymous says:

      Perhaps its because he is the most capable, competent,experienced and most of all moral man that qualifies and would take the job?  I’m just saying he did get voted in by the people and the people, although they be talking , are not voting him out.  Since he is the representative of the people of Cayman then that’s what the people of Cayman really want.  Its also how the people of Cayman view themselves and of course what they think of "others".   And now vice versa.

      And if he really is not then the people should replace him with someone they really do agree with.  Now!

  15. CNS=PPM says:

    The premier has to travel in order to conduct the business of government; every leader in this world travels abroad to deal with issues and to sign deals for the benefit of the country, without these trips we would not be off the gray lists or have an MOU with Dr. Shetty…i have always suspected that CNS is working for the other side and now that i know who they are..well nough said…

    CNS: Because we ask the premier to account for his whereabouts you have concluded that we are working for the PPM. This is similar to the premier’s "if you blog you do not love this country" and shows the same sad logic.

    • James says:

      well… how do you explain going to the Miss Universe Concert and watching the Winter Olympics?

      Was that on his vacation time?

    • Anonymous says:

      Yes leaders need travel, but does their travel have to be luxury class flights, accommodation and food?  Or would economy be sufficient?  After all he would still get the job done, just a heck of a lot cheaper.  He’s acting like he thinks he’s the king of the country.  He needs to remember he is just a politician in a country under the reign of Queen Elizabeth.  Last time I checked we chose not to be independent, so we don’t got the right to act like we are.

    • CNS=PPM says:

      Correct me if im wrong but it sounds like you’re trying to say that i have no love for this country? well thats just sad and once again proves my point..you need to remember that you are in the business of journalism which requires a certain amount of responsability, fair and balanced reporting which i can honestly say that when it comes to Mckeeva it seems you guys just loose it; its like a very dangerous obsession orsomething..For the record i am all for FOI, I believe the Premier should be made to disclose his business travels thats not the issueat all, its the cherry picking of the Miller report and the over indulgence with the premier makes me question your professionalism.

      CNS: "Correct me if I’m wrong…" OK, you’re wrong. That’s not what I said.

      • Anonymous says:

        You really need to stay with the English-as-a-second-language classes a little longer.  Good grief. 

  16. Anonymous says:

    Is it written some where that the Cayman Islands MUST accept every foreign meeting invitation or send a representative??? Why can’t we politely decline sometimes (am certain not every single one is relevant to us); particularily in these tough economic times? Our leaders should be setting an example for the rest of the country and not creating a burden to tax payers….. 

  17. Anonymous says:

    Seriously, I would like to know where are all of those proud UDP voters that we used to hear so much from? Come guys speak up! Defend your "leader"? Cough cough I mean dictator….

     

    I bet you guys wish you could take back that X you put next to every UDP member. What a group…

    You have Elio who goes on his rants and his mouth gets him in trouble time and time again. Elio reminds me of the Number 1 overall draft pick that produces nothing but trouble… (I will say Elio will help out the little common man on the street) 

    Then you have Dwayne (lol C’ mon SON!!! I won’t say anymore")

    Cpt Ebanks….. Who??? Where??? Anyone knows what this man does? No really, what does he do?

    Cline who just spends his time getting that law degree.. 

    Mr Scottland…. Where were your statements about Dr Shetty and his hospital? I thought you were the minister of health… To me it looks like Mac is a one man show…

    Mike, you are a guy I can respect to a degree…. Why the hell did you have to team up with the UDP…

    Mr Anglin, the man who should berunning this Govt. sadly sits in Mac’s shadow. I like you a lot sir your are a very nice person and will always take time to talk to people (from what I have seen)…

    The Dept. Premier, how in the world did she get this job? seriously how in the world did she get this over Rolston (you got screwed Mr. Anglin)? We all know Mr. Anglin wanted to leave the UDP after that was announcement was made…

    Then we have Mac, the ruthless dictator who demands respect but won’t give it. I was not a huge fan of the PPM and for some reason a part of me wanted to believe the promises you made pre-election. This man has done one of the worst things I have ever seen, in wanting to sensor the media. Bring out the silence hammer on the freedom of speech. Where is the democracy? Where I ask you?

    So back to my original point. Where are all of you UDP supporters? Please defend this man’s actions (or try to…lol)…

    • sandra says:

      WELL…

      THAT’S WHAT YOU GET WHEN YOU

      "VOTE STRAIGHT!" (excuse my slang)

      Only the smart ones voted in the man or woman they saw fit to lead. The mindless crowd voted everyone of the same party!

      lol… sorry, but how fool-fool you can get?

       

  18. Anonymous says:

    he talked about chuckie he probably spent 250k on one trip!!!

    chuckie please make a stand to this man, no one has the cojones to do it besides you!

    what did the Cayman Islands get out of all these trips? he went around th world looking for investors when he raised the price to do business XXXXX!!!

     

  19. Anonymous says:

    A Mac Attack – but question not answered

    Mac’s rant was cleverly designed to side step the actual  question asked?  HOW MUCH has been spent on travel since he took office?  With first class tickets and $1,000/nt plus hotel rooms, for Mac and his entourage of cronies, senior civil servants and so-called consultants, the cost must be past SEVERAL MILLIONS.  Particulary when you add in the cost of the personal chauffeur, maid, cook, security wall with gate house, etc.  Plus the expenses incurred by deputy premier who has now taken to staying at the Alexandra hotel while she’s in the Brac and not at her own home.  Wasn’t it Mac who told the world we were broke?  Well he is certainly not living my example. Any austerity measures conjured by the Gov’t are only intended for the minion-level civil servants, certainly NOT for Mac and his cronies.

    Mrs Dilbert, could you please ensure that Mac answers the question asked.  HOW MUCH has been spent on travel and travel related expenses?

    CNS: Actually, the FOI that has been answered did not contain a question about expenses – we’ve found that it is best to keep requests as simple as possible – but the one that I have now sentto the ministry does ask for travel expenses. See the Viewpoint that will be posted later today.

    • durrrr says:

      Great. Just great.

      So now that CNS admits that it failed to ask the one single question that would tell us something new, we the tax-payer get to pay for you to repeat the process.

      If it wouldn’t be such a waste of time, I’d be tempted to submit my own FOI request to see how much time and money this nonsense has cost us. Still, I guess your ad revenues will be up.

      CNS: We did not fail to ask the question. We are asking the question in stages because otherwise it would have taken too long to get an answer.

      • Anonymous says:

         Ah… the UDP "shock troops" have learned how to use a computer.  But you misspelled your own name:  it’s not durrr, it’s dumb! 

      • Scrooge McDuck says:

        The 1st question CNS submitted asked:  "How often has the Premier travelled since taking office?"

        The answer was:  "Quite."

        The 2nd question then was:  "Where did he go?"

        The answer was:  "Off island."

        The 3rd question was:  "To where?"

        The answer was:  "Somewhere else."

        The 4th question will be:  "How much has it cost?"

        The answer might be:  "More than $10."

        So durr you see it can get quite expensive.

      • Anonymous says:

        I’m curious…… what taxes do you pay in Cayman that would be routed towards this ‘expense’? Typically this type of response is given when there is an income tax being submitted annually, no?

        • Anonymous says:

          Taxes are embeded in everything we do/buy. When you see the word DUTY, read that as TAX.

      • durrrr says:

        Nice try CNS.  You admitted in the comment above that you did not ask about the expenses – so you clearly did fail to ask the question.

        And I’d be interested to know how you claim to know how long it would take to get an answer ahead of time… it surely would have been quicker, and more cost effective, to submit all the questions at once. Your comment is nothing more than a very poor excuse IMHO. And what’s worse, it suggests that more questions are to follow. I hope you get a bill for this…

        As for Mr. Curious below, have you ever come across customs import duties? Unless you live in a drift-wood shack and live on fish and coconuts, you pay taxes on this island…

        CNS: There’s no point in arguing with people who will not listen.

        • Anonymous says:

          .".it surely would have been quicker, and more cost effective, to submit all the questions at once".

          How difficult do you think it is to answer these questions?  That information should be readily available.  Believe me, they are dissecting those questions and figuring out how little they can answer.  That’s what costs a lot.  The time spent figuring out how much they can hide and get away with it.

          Here’s how it goes.  Poor lowly secretary gets all the information together then her higher up dissects it to death.  Take that out.  They don’t need to know that.   Every department has a FOI officer.  How hard can it possibly be?

           

  20. Anonymous says:

    CNS,

    Has anyone made a similar request for, say Mr Tibbett’s last year or 2 in office, so we can compare how the 2 leaders have spent their time?

    I understand people get rock fever but spending nearly half your time overseas is a bit much….

  21. Anonymous says:

    The problem with this issue and many others that have arisen since the swearing in of the new "Premier" is that McKeeva Bush seems to believe that the people of the Cayman Islands are accountable to him.

    Let me correct that misconception:  Mr. Bush, as an elected representative of the people and as head of the people’s government, YOU ARE ACCOUNTABLE TO THE PEOPLE OF THE CAYMAN ISLANDS. 

    I would suggest that if you are one of those civil servants who are unable to perform their jobs properly, legally, openly and transparently, that you step aside and let someone else take the position or at least save us the money we are wasting by paying your salary.

     

  22. Anonymous says:

     As much as people complained about the PPM at least we could see where our money was going… schools, roads, Ivan and Paloma repairs etc. This bunch of Jokers are traveling around the world having a jolly good time on our dime.  Yet continue to blame the PPM for our financial situation… Show us how much you have spent in the past year !! Where is all this transparency now, Elio??? The only thing this government has done is spend lots of money that could of been put to much better use (ie. used to finished one of the school buildings), raise the cost of living and send our economy spiraling downwards.  They have done more damage in less than a year than the PPM ever did in four. (By the way, I’m not a member of any political party- except the common sense party) God help us 3 more years!

    Also, can anyone tell me why Mac needs body guards, a 8 foot wall, a guard house and CCTV etc ??? If he feels the need for all this security, why not go live in HIS Ritz condo where it already exists and it’s free? The governor has no body guards and just a rope across the beach protecting him.  The deputy governor has no body guards and as a matter of fact is ALONE on the public  road exercising all the time. So what is this man afraid of? His own people, the voting public? His ranting, raving, obsession with removing the color "red" from sunsets and red carpets etc , as well as his erratic and irrational responses all sound like paranoid delusions / "crazy" talk to me !  

    XXXXXXX

    • Anonymous says:

      In response to your last paragraph. The answer to your question is obvious. He needs protection because he knows more than we do and he realizes that if it all comes out, he needs to be prepared.

      I think if people knew everything, especially W’Bayers, they would be pretty angry. And disappointed, shocked, let down, disgusted, riotous…

      I’m sure you can understand.

  23. Anonymous says:

    Thank you CNS.  Because of your request, poor fellow, Steve McField got the opportunity to go to the Pacificto attend the UN conference to represent the Hon. Premier. So who would get the opportunity to go for the Miss Universe pagent next time around?

    • Major Tom says:

      We should send Mickey Mouse and distract him from making all those FOI requests.  Actually Mickey Mouse would be a very accurate representative of this regime on the world stage.

  24. Richard N. Parson says:

     It is NEVER a "waste of time" to check up on the elected officials and hold them accountable for their actions.  It needs to be done more often.

  25. Dred says:

    I have but one thing to say reading all of this and you can take this to the bank cause it is as good as gold.

    CNS. Your Days. They are numbered.

    Let me put it another way. First we shall have threats of lawsuits. Can anyone remember the forum that we had before?

    Reading this I see new laws being drawn up as I type this to deal with CNS. I see CNS having to hire lawyers to protect their rights to allow us to speak and the cost running up substantially to the point where serious decisions will have to be made by CNS. The question of is it worth it will be laid on the table.

    I’m sorry CNS but as much as I love you I feel that yours days of allowing us the people a clear and present voice is numbered.

    He simply will not go quietly into that good night.

    • Anonymous says:

      Simply retarded!

      First — how can you support a government that would attack the press!

      Second — all they have to do is host the website off island and there is nothing that anyone can do about it.

      Good job CNS!

    • Anonymous says:

      CNS, start a paypal account, I for one will donate for your legal representation

      CNS: Thanks we may well do that!

      • Get Up Stand Up says:

        SLAPP…..Strategic Lawsuit Against Public Participation.  They go by different names and varying tactics but are tried quite often by governments and businesses to withhold information.  Or at least make it very expensive for members of the public or media by being tied up in a large lawsuit. 

        Unfortunately it would not be useful in this instance as it has already been made quite clear that that is exactly what it would be.  Given the statement that "fees" would be increased to $100,000 for no other reason than to silence opposition.  Big mistake.  I believe the Courts would throw it out on those grounds alone. Plus any expenses incurred by the defendants.

        In any event.. we wouldn’t let it get that far.

    • Hansel says:

      Dred

      You are being pessimistic!

      Let us hope that this does not happen to CNS

    • Anon says:

      In 3 Years this XXXX will be gone, Dred!   He didn’t have to deal with the internet or free speach during his last ‘tour of duty.’  Next time folks will know what they got for the free refrigerator.  And Nicky and Wendy- there are ways of working around this XXX if you are so inclined.

    • Anonymous says:

      All business, big and small, should buy advertising space in CNS.

      • Anonymous says:

        If Mac tries to follow through on his threats, I’m sure we’ll all be willing to chip in, to help CNS.  Let’s put our money where our mouths are!!

    • Anonymous says:

      Anyone remember "Caypolitics" and its demise?  Quite ironic where it’s founder is nowadays.

  26. Mamma Mia! says:

     

    This is why one should not put both feet in one’s mouth at the same time because then one won’t have a leg to stand on.

  27. Anonymous says:

    Geez um piece……is this the same man that was carrying on about Mr. Chucky spending $250,000 on travel during his 4 year term in office. What he didn’t tell unna is that the $250,000 included Ministry staff too……not just the Minister.

    Now Mr. Mac tell us how much you’ve racked up in your short 12 months……given the number of trips it has to significantly exceed $250,000.

    And folks the good news is……we have 3 years to go. Whoohooooo. Or do we ?

    Anyone got any news on how the UDP meeting with Bushy went ?? Or was it postponed ???

    • Hansel says:

      I hope they reprimanded him or had a no confidence vote, because if they don’t do something, it will make the UDP look really bad. People will very well say, it is Bush pulling all the strings and they are scared or intimidated by him.

  28. Anonymous says:

    I noticed family and in-laws travelling 1st class all the time, who pays for that????

  29. lone ranger says:

    probly CNS can request info on how the tickets were paid for by the party who went and wath FOOTBALL WHILE IN ENGLAND on thier way to INDIA   i would like to know how many attended that game, with the minister of HEALTH.AND WHO PAID

  30. Anonymous says:

    No wonder he didn’t want to reveal the details of his travels; He was travelling for work for only HALF of the time!

    Below is how it probably went:

    Trip to Paris? Let’s double the travel time so that I can spend my country’s money to visit as well and eat good food. 

    Trip to Asia? Why not spend more money to go to Bali on a nice beach and get a relaxing massage.

    Christmas coming? I’m due for some time in the Bahamas….let’s make a day of work over there and then take several more by the hotel pool.

    It must be nice to be the Premier. Your civil servants must be happy to take pay cuts while you enjoy your travels.

     

    • Suspicious says:

      Hallo Feb 11/13 Vancouver? That cannot be right. I know having gone there last year.It takes one day to get there. I suggest Massmac is not telling us about the actual days of travel.No surprise there.

    • Hansel says:

      Let’s be fair now…

      If I travel on business, of course, I am going to take some time off for a massage or a swim at the beach. Besides, if I am not well, how can I work???

      Now…. him taking time off for Miss Universe and the Olympics… you have a valid argument.

      • Anonymous says:

         Of course, we’ll be fair-

        If I intend to take leisurely time on my business trips they will be paid out of MY pocket, not hitching a free ride on the backside of ‘business trip’ excuse paid for by the country.

         

  31. Anonymous says:

    Mac travels more than President Obama.  I really would love to know how much his travel in less than 1 year has cost us!!??!!

  32. Anonymous says:

    CNS can we have the expenses associated with this travel broken down as follows :

    *Airfare;

    * Hotel;

    *Meals;

    *Meeting rooms;

    *Entertainment (including shows and gentlemen’s clubs)

    *Shopping (XXXXXXX);

    *Limos; and

    *Casinos (you know slot machines, tables etc.)

    • Time will tell says:

      OMG!!!!!

      Half the days since he was elected (even more as he was not sworn in as leader till a month or so after the elections) have been spent off the Island and he says he is looking after Cayman.

      Remember George. W. Bush, the President who was more concerned in Foreign Affairs than Home Affairs?

      We all know what the American people did at the elections but Cayman cannot afford to wait till the electionsto remove this man as there will be nothing left for Caymanians!

      And please don’t rely on the other UDP members to replace him as they are all spineless cowards who allow McKeeva to do as he pleases at our expense.

  33. Anonymous says:

    Memo to: The Premier

    From:  The Caymanian People

    Re: Our Money that You and Your Cronies Have Spent

    ____________

    Thank you for listing where you went.

    What we actually asked was how much did it cost the people of Cayman for you, any family or friends that went with you or were "entertained" at our expense and any cronies, "advisors" or "consultants" and any family and friends of theirs that tagged along at our expense on each of these luxury trips? Please also tellus why it was important for each "hanger-on" and baggage carrier to travel with you.

     

  34. Proudly Anonymous says:

    For a man who doesn’t like flying or being away from family, it sure must work for him on some level.  I’m certain that Mr. Bush would not be complaining about the wasted time CNS had caused, if the results of this FOI request actually made him look good. Mr. Bush literally has his head in the clouds, prancing around the world as if he was head of state of a larger much more important nation than the one he has been elected to run. He could do so much for this Country in his position. Instead we have the odd hard working civil servants left to pick up the slack and carry Mr. Bush on their backs.  It’s heartbreaking to have a gent like this appearing to do nothing at the top and then criticising those who dare shine the light of truth on his deeds.

  35. Anonymous says:

    I’m not fond of flying… but I sure love vacation! 

  36. Anonymous says:

    There.  Now was that so hard? 

  37. Anonymous says:

    King Richard left England many times to fight a crusade, and england left in the hands of those that were greedy. Is Cayman going the same way with King Mac always on a crusade and important issues being left in the ‘in tray’?

    Perhaps a cayman ‘Robin Hood will come to the rescue of Cayman and fight off those who don’t care about the country.

  38. Fiddler says:

    I cannot believe it took three months to prepare this flimsy response. Bush has a full time secretary so why so long? Does he or she not keep a diary? It would be very interesting indeed to find out the cost of allof this. I hope he uses his frequent flyer mileage to contribute to the cost of these tickets. Does he get a per diem rate for expenses I also wonder. May be Dan’s department could take a look, assuming of course that records are available.

    • Annoymous says:

      What per diem?

      This man just built the wall of china around his house and made us pay for it.  He didn’t ask just took. I knowthere was more done but waiting on my FOI to come through before he shuts down that office.  hmmmmm

      I think what Mac is doing is creating his private home the Premier’s Residence and then when he leaves office (which is going to be soon at the rate his mouth is running off) he will make the GOvt. buy it for an astronomical price and move out of the Bay Area. LOL!!!!

      Mac forgets so easily, Elio was the one hammering the hell out of the PPM about transparency and what this one was spending and that one.  Now the shoe is on the other foot he is so silent one has to wonder who took away his voicebox.

       

      • Anonymous says:

        I would like to know what happened to Mr. Helio. I remember him ranting and raving about transparency when it came to the PPM but now he has gone quiet. If ever a time he should be hoarse it is NOW.

  39. Albert Jackson says:

    They call this junkets. He needs to explain this to the country in detail instead of attacking the press. Most people know that that is what the press does find out what government officials are doing with the people’s time?

    Now how much money did it cost? That is the real deal. Will that be disclosed?

  40. Anonymous says:

     What head of state spends half of the year away from his country? 

     

    More important than the time, however, is how much money all this cost. We have a right to know how much he spends on food and hotel. 

     

    Bush can make a valid argument that he must travel. But what he won’t be able to defend is extravagant spending to stay in absurdly luxurious hotels in India and elsewhere.  How much was spent?

     

    It’s our money, why can’t we know how it was spent? 

     

     

     

  41. Anonymous says:

    How can it have taken a long time – surely its just a matter of  pulling the info from an electronic diary – after all we must have it noted when he is in residence and when he isnt  

  42. Anonymous says:

    Looks like our fearless leader stuck his head out the window to see which way the political wind was blowing. Its called accountability Mac, say it with us…accountability. See that wasn’t so hard 🙂

    • Anonymous says:

      Poster 8:43  you make me laugh and I mean laugh. You hit the nail on the head.

  43. Anonymous says:

    Why was this information not readily available and the obvious next question and maybe more important one is how much was spent. Was he in 5000$ a night accommodations or 500$>  And come on really ….Bali…… he is going into the furniture business or what? What could possibly be the benefit to the Cayman Islands’ connection with a country like Bali?  Sounds like a pretty good exotic vacation payed for by the people of the Caymans.

  44. Richard Wadd says:

     CNS,

     All very-well and good, but WE (the people) also want to know:

    a/. What all this Travelling is COSTING us?

    b/. Do they Travel Coach, Business, or First-Class?

    c/. Do they Lodge in ‘The Presidential Suite’, or reasonable accommodation, do they stay at ‘The Marriott’, or ‘The Waldorf’?

    d/. Do they Rent-a-car, or use Limousines? 

     These are the IMPORTANT questions that need answering, for they will show US (we the people of Cayman) how serious the Govt. is about Saving / Spending OUR money, especially when we are in an Economic crisis (or to quote Mac, "….weez broke").

    • Afraid to Strap on a Pair Also says:

      Yeah, Mac- details;  we need details.  I’m a road warrior and actually a villa in Bali is quite reasonable;  about 1/4 the cost of Cayman.  Trips to the Olympics and Californee- LOTS O’ $$$- especially with your entourage.

  45. Anonymous says:

    It’s the law….. even you have to abide by it Mr Bush.

  46. A Great Mind hmmm says:

    Speaking of FOI requests.

    Do you know if you request any information on a persons status in this country from Immigration etc. that individual can see who made the requests.

    I wonder what would happen if I enquire about all those persons on island awaiting PR and don’t have a valid work permit and not paying a dime to the Govt. but yet they are allowed to work where ever and for whomever and continue to do so until the PR is approved.  That is the most rubbish I have ever heard.

    Now that the PR Board is only dealing with statuses right now can anyone tell why are these persons allowed to remain and work in this country without any firm status, taking jobs away from Caymanians who are looking work.

    Send these people back home, when their application is approved then they can return.  Furthermore this PR granting has to come to an end. Seriously, this is not helping the country in any form whatsoever.

    Calling for the abolishing of PR.

    PR is hurting Caymanians from getting jobs, getting promotions, and we all know what happens when some of these people get it they do everything in their power to push the poor Caymanian out of work and bring in their friends from overseas. 

    If PR has to stay, then I say call in people who work with these individuals and get some character working references on them.  YOu will be surprised to say the least.

    NO MORE XXXXX PR’s

    (sorry Wendy you can x out the bad word) 🙂 

  47. The Prophet says:

    The 161 days mentioned in the article do not include the Premier’s personal travel. We could well find that Mr. Bush spent less time onthe island than reported.

    It would be interesting to find out the cost of this travel. 

    In this economically difficult time how many times did the entourage travel coach instead of first class?

    How many times did they stay in a regular hotel room versus a suite?

    Such simple measures can lower the tab to the tax payer by tens of thousands of dollars over a year. 

    • Anonymous says:

      Yes, two nights at the Olympics seems less than his absence then, but the rest might have been personal leave. It would be interesting to see the costs of each trip, including the entourage costs.

  48. Anonymous says:

    So if we talk about freedom of speech, i have to ask CNS about something. I guess it work on both ways…we have to be honest here…

    CNS: In answer to your question, there were legal issues.

     
  49. Anonymous says:

    This is a very sad situation but thank you CNS for asking these important questions.

  50. Anonymous says:

    Under the FOI, does a person have the right to enquire into the expenses for all of this travel?

  51. Anonymous says:

    Mr.Bush, the assessment as to whether or not the request had merit is not yours to make. That decision has been given to a duly appointed independent individual. Truth is, you remain a servant of the people. So get used to answering their questions, regardless of what your personal opinion might happen to be. Keep that for your private conversations, if you choose (just ensure you are not live, like poor old Gordon!).

    I actually happen to think you are the right man for the job given Cayman’s present circumstances, but I want you to rise above pettiness, as you appeared to be doing to begin with, and be the statesman we need. Assuredly, the chattering press and blogs are not the main players here, it’s public opinion, and if you think otherwise you are sadly mistaken. It’s what you and your cabinet decide, and so please, let’s not get embroiled with some can’t win war with the media (you will lose, sir, as surely as the sun will rise – God willing – in the morning). You have a good sense of humour. I look forward to you employing it as appropriate (the name spelling thing was good). Please, give the public here in Cayman (as well as out dear readers from abroad) credit for being possessed of good sense and a savvy awareness of things in general  with regard to newspaper commentary and blog opinions, however vitriolic – even volcanic, truth be told – in nature. I am a floating voter. I can (collectively) boot you out or put you back in. Please, impress me next briefing by being a statesman (with no more rubbish about fighting the media!). You are above that.

     
  52. Anonymous says:

    I am happy to see Mr Bush is working for the country and not just collecting pay for nothing, keep up the the good work Mr Bush.

     

    Bobby

  53. Anonymous says:

    Does the Premier have to sign all of these Treaties?

    Surely someone could spare the poor Leader of his fear of flight.

    My guess is once he reads this he will make it Law that only he can sign ensuring that only he can rack up all those frequent flier points not to mention all those red light districts.

     

  54. Anonymous says:

    I did call Mr Bush office today for a reaction to these claims, unfortunately he is off island in cuba for the long weekend, lmao

  55. Scrooge McDuck says:

    I really do think we should have closer ties with Bali.  I mean….they’re an island.  So is Fiji.  Hey!!! I haven’t been to Fiji!!.  Or Tahiti.  Or Bora Bora!!!

    Bali????

    What the F was he doin in Bali?????

    Dubai I get.

    They have casinos and nightlife.

    Pareee is nice too if he wanted to brush up on his Frensch.  But Bali’s a realllllllll   stretch.  Itsa dirty job. But sumbody’s gotta do it.

    "I hate flying…..I just can’t stand staying in 5 star hotels night after night in exotic locations. I would much rather be here with my family on a crime infested island."  Yeah sure 

     

  56. Anonymous says:

    NO! CNS, this cannot be true. Are you sure? Isn’t the country meant to be bankrupt? (or at least so says McKeeva Bush)!

    In one year McKeeva Bush has spent almost half his time off island? Unbelievable! And it is we, the people who pay for his travel, accomodation & expenses, & we are broke? Added to these shocking facts, we also have to pay for his personal perks such as a chauffeur, a personal chef & housekeeper, an 8 foot wall around his house, body guards just to same a few. Is he joking or telling us untruths when he tells the world that we are bankrupt? This man is unreal.

    However, the facts are now in the public domain for all to see, & for all the travel, expensive lodgings, & huge expenses that the premier has cost the country what does he have to show for it? Where are all the foreign investors who were supposedly knocking down his door? What a load of hogwash! Far more investors have run away in the past year than have come here. He has chased investors away (remember the higher fees?).

    There are dark days ahead with this man at the helm.

    • Anonymous says:

      I f we weren’t bankrupt and I do find that hard to swallow as hte same Financial  Secretary prepared 2 sets of financials which went from  surplus to deficit (huge) in a few months – would really like to know how that happened – we probably are now.  This is why civil servants salaries have to be cut and the new govt. admin building sold so that the premier and his cronies can continue the lifestyle they have quickly become accustomed to.

      They also avoid implementing the Environmental law XXXXX while developers rip out perfectly healthy mangroves so that they can replant them.  Wow isn’t that amazing!  Not only will we be bankrupt Cayman will soon be a desert.

  57. durrrr says:

    ‘just 161’? Hardly impartial reporting now is it?

     

    A more balanced report would make it clear that he was here for 161 days out of the 273 day period covered by your request, which is almost 60% of the time.  It is also interesting to note that you failed to mention the list of invitations which he did not attend.

     

    All this fuss over nothing at all. Hell, it’s not even news – I think each and every one of the trips was reported in the press at the time.

  58. Cole Jackson says:

    I agree with McKeeva Bush there should be a reason stated for the use of the information from FOI. That’s how they do it anywhere else. People like to waste government time and don’t allow them to complete their tasks. People should deal with their own lives first. 

    • Anonymous says:

      And who is to judge that the reason given is acceptable? They could deny anything they wanted by saying the reason isn’t good enough.

    • Anonymous says:

      "That’s how they do it anywhere else."

      Please cite examples, rather than just spew generalities. Who is "they" and where do you find within "their" legislation related to FOI that it is a requirement for a request to include its intended purpose to be deemed valid?

      I imagine I might be waiting a long time for your response…

      • Anonymous says:

         Everywhere from United States to anywhere in Latin America.. Go study the facts first before saying anything idiot.. Stupid people like u are what make the island this way.

        • Anonymous says:

          Actually, I think you should take to heart your own advice.

          The U.S. Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) generally provides that any person, including U.S. citizens, foreign nationals, organizations, universities, businesses, and state and local governments has the right to federal records, enforceable in court, except to the extent that such records (or portions of them) are protected from public disclosure by one of nine exemptions. FOIA requests can be made for any reason, with no showing of relevancy required, and FOIA requesters are under no requirement to explain or justify their requests.

          • Anonymous says:

             Taken directly from the FOIA site my friend: 

             

            Read and learn…

            fice of Information Programs and Services 
            A/GIS/IPS/RL
            U. S. Department of State 
            Washington, D. C. 20522-8100
            Date: 5/17/2010

            Dear FOIA Officer: 
            This is a request filed under the Freedom of Information Act.

            Date range of request:
            Between (mm/yyyy)
                and   

            Description of request : 
            Please provide the subject, any individuals involved, and reasons why the Department is believed to have records on the subject. 

            • Anonymous says:

              Nothing in what you have quoted in any way negates the point that anyone can make the FOI request for any reason in the U.S. You seem to have a reading comprehension difficulty.  The text highlighted in red has no bearing on the issue.  The "individuals concerned" relate to the subject of the FOI request.

              • Anonymous says:

                 XXXXX The individuals involved have to do with the subject matter but it does also ask for who the information if for and if it is for personal or commercial use(stating the use therein). 

                CNS: This comment was flagged for abuse, and I have deleted the offending phrase, even though the following response answers it well. Apologies for missing it.

                • Anonymous says:

                  First, you should be mature enough to make your point without gratuituous name-calling. In every post you have called someone "stupid".  That was bad enough but then you but now you have added "Caymanian" – "stupid Caymanian". Is that the way you feel about Caymanians? How did being Caymanian arise in this? Seeing that you are not unable to articulate very well, I would avoid calling others "stupid" if I were you. 

                  Second, you are obviously wrong. Requesters do not have to explain the reason for their request. This is quite different from specifying the category of the request which is used to determine the applicable fee. Obviously saying that it is for commercial or educational use does not explain the reason why you want the information.  Also, in the UK, for example,  you’re not obliged to explain why you want it and they’re not allowed to ask.

    • Anonymous says:

      Actually that is NOT how they do it elsewhere.  That’s why we do it that way here – by following "best practice" from around the world 

    • Anonymous says:

      True. He has a point as well when he spoke about mickey mouse – don’t know who the trivial request is coming from

      FOI can’t spin from this one! There are some things that will waste government’s time. I would like to see a factual article from CNS reporting on such trivial request, which consumes governments time

  59. Dred says:

    I’m curious as to how much all this travelling has cost us. I mean the last time I heard we were a country on the brink of complete collapse or as he put it "BROKE".

    I’m not saying some of this was not needed but looking at all the locations and our financial situation I would say he’s acting like someone who just won a lottery and not like someone trying to control government expenses.

    But that’s just me. The man on the street. The man who voted in the elections. The man who’s voice he does not want heard.

    Let’s stop and pause a moment because I believe our days of FOI as we know it now are numbered. Our days of CNS might also be numbered.

    Fight the good fight CNS…..You have my vote.

    • Anonymous says:

      I WOULD LIKE TO SAY MY PIECE SINCE THE DAYS OF CNS MIGHT BE NUMBERED, BUT THIS TRAVELLING WITH NOT ONLY MACK SHOULD BE CHECKED ON. FOR EXAMPLE YOU HAVE HIS DEPUTY WHO LIVES IN THE AIR MUCH MORE THAN MACK AND THEN TRAVELLING WITH HER BAGGAGE HANDLER WHO IS NAMED AS HER BODY GUARD. I HAVE ALREADY ASKED HOW MUCH DOES THAT COST. THEN TRAVELLING TO JAMAICA AND HONDURAS FOR WHAT? WHEN WILL BE THE DAY OF RECKONING? GET ME STRAIGHT I AM A SUPPORTER OF THE UDP BUT I DO HAVE EYES AND COMMON SENSE. I DO NOT LOVE THESE PEOPLE MORE THAN MY COUNTRY AND THIS IS TOO MUCH.

      CNS: Thank you for contributing, but could you post future comments without the caps lock on.

  60. Anonymous says:

    cns and democracy 1 – big mac small brain dictator 0.

  61. Anonymous says:

    Last paragraph: "Bush said …………….the information was not readily available".

    Why the hell not? Carson Ebanks is earning $140,000, Leonard Dilbert ?$90,0000+ and Kenneth Ebanks ?$ 90,000+ in that Ministry. Is that the best they can do? Oh, lets blame it on the Public Management and Finance Law, that’s become a great way for civil servants to pretend they cant do this or that.No accountability.

    I am a civil servant. It is – or should be – dead simple to account for something like overseas travel. In my ministry, we could give it to you chapter and verse within 12 hours or less.

    • Anonymous says:

      Anon Friday 18:54, you missed out the following (list not exhaustive) also in Mac’s Ministry: Financial Secretary (KJ $150000+) Chief Officer Finance (SMc $140000) Head of Budget and Management (RD) +Deputy ($100000 each), Deputy Chief Officers Finance (MN, DW, SR, AO) ($90000 apiece) etc etc.

      All bright people, we’re told, who should be able to provide simple information quickly.

      • Anonymous says:

        You don’t use AK47s to go and hunt for mosquitoes my friend. Enuf said

      • Anonymous says:

        IF WE HAD SOME BRIGHT PEOPLE WHO WAS NOT ONLY LOOKING FOR THEMSELVES CAYMAN WOULD NOT HAVE GONE TO HELL. REMEMBER THIS DID NOT HAPPEN OVERNIGHT, WERE WE ALL SLEEPING. THOSE WHO SAW THIS COMING COULD NOT DO ANYTHING ABOUT IT.

  62. Anonymous says:

    Ok

    He spent about 161 days in his own home country. The rest of days from May ’09 to February ’10, total about 5 months where he was away doing business for the country, et cetera… Bear in mind, he has vacation

    So the question now is –

    Do we hold him accountable for diverting some days off official business to watch the Winter Olympics and Miss Universe Pageant, et cetera?

    Or,

    Do we say that this Freedom of Information inquiry is unnecessarilyputting him under pressure from doing his work on our behalf and is thus, a meaninglessinquiry? 

    I think most would agree that the FOI law has its place. It shows how our monies is being spent by those who hold key responsible positions in the country. Look at it this way – Anyone using your money – Are you not entitle to know what that one is doing with it?

    Hence, the Premier should not attack the FOI Law. It is a reasonable law of transparency.

     

  63. TennisAce says:

     You know what I actually agree that this request seemed a bit of a waste of time as the Premier’s overseas trips have been well documented in the media. I would go further and say that most of the requests for information that I have seen are those that are about salaries of top level civil servants.  I am not sure whether journalists in the Cayman Islands are aware as to the reason behind the FOI.  I would think that the FOI would have been used to look at corruption in government, say the contracts between those folks who signed the scrap metal contract; information on government contracts on a whole and seek to see the tenders that have been submitted.  I would also think that requests to Immigration as to the numbers of persons who have applied for PR and whether they have been granted; a FOI request should also be made to the Department of Labour to determine the educational level of Caymanians who are seeking work. I was of the view that all requests for information would be information that the public would need to know.  Submitting a request to determine how many trips the Premier has made is a waste of time and resources as checks through CNS and other media can always tell when the Premier is not here.   When all else fails we can do what we always do in Cayman, go to the Marl Road for information. 

    • Anonymous says:

      Tennis Ace… stop wasting your words. Lets see the dollar figures and then the true judgement will be handed down. I suspect all those suspisicions on the other side of your opinion will be on solid ground. If the figures were not embarrassing why hasn’t he offered them up?  Let the chips fall where they may and see that he is truly squandering all of our money for his own self interests  at the finest hotels.