Taylor talks good governance

| 15/06/2010

Cayman Islands News, Grand Cayman Island headline news(CNS): There is still work to do to ensure the efficient functioning of the Cayman Islands 2009 Constitution, the governor said Tuesday, as he delivered his first Throne Speech in the Legislative Assembly. Duncan Taylor said good governance and human rights were the key themes of the country’s new Constitution. Although much has been done, the UK’s representative noted that there were various bodies and committees that needed to be established to prepare for the introduction of the Bill or Rights, which he said was rightly referred to in the Constitution as “a cornerstone of democracy in the Cayman Islands”.  (Photo By Dennie Warren Jr)

The Human Rights Commission, a Commission for Standards in Public Life, a Constitutional Commission, and a National Security Council have already been established, the governor noted, but the Judicial and Legal Services Commission, the Advisory Committee on the Prerogative of Mercy and the Advisory District Councils, as well as the office of Director of Public Prosecutions all needed to be done.   

“The Constitution provides the core foundation and structure for our society. We need to draw strength from it to build a better and stronger Cayman Islands,” the governor said.
Outlining government plans over the coming year, he said there were three key themes.
“We need to adapt public finances to the new reality … we need to provide security for our people … (and ) … we need constantly to work to promote and ensure good governance and respect for human rights,” he said, adding the importance of ensuring the independence of the judiciary and other checks and balances in the Constitution.
 
He said the Auditor General’s Office would continue to carry out its mandate to provide assurance on government’s activities, ensuring value-for-money and the avoidance of waste, and the Complaints Commissioner would encourage government to serve the public better. He further noted that the Information Commissioner’s Office would encourage wide participation from the public in exercising their rights to information as well as hear, investigate and rule on appeals and review the Freedom of Information Law.
 
He said government would look for a Private Finance Initiative for the new court building but that the work of the Grand Court would be facilitated in part through the recent increase in judges for the Financial Services Division and the soon-to-be completed court for that division. The governor also noted that the Drug Rehabilitation Court would be seeking its own funding and  the community’s support in the area of job provision.
 
Meanwhile, the Cabinet Office will prepare for the eventual increase in the size of Cabinet while the portfolio of the civil service will introduce e-learning and undertake amendments to the personnel laws in order to enhance efficiency and accountability.
 
Taylor said the Royal Cayman Islands Police Service would continue to strengthen its crime-fighting capabilities by hiring suitably qualified staff, training and developing personnel and complementing existing resources. He said it would be developing its intelligence capabilities, in order to better secure our borders against the illegal entry of people, guns and drugs.
Immigration would also work to secure borders and reduce immigration-related crime with the help of the Advanced Passenger Information System and the fingerprinting of all work-permit holders, which will begin in late 2010.
 
There will be more education at the prison, the governor announced, with inmates being encouraged to take more courses, including adult literacy and it will expand rehabilitative opportunities for drug and alcohol abusers. In support of the Alternative Sentencing Law, the governor said 911 Emergency Communications will expand its electronic monitoring function, to provide the option of tagging as a condition of bail. “The department will also implement a closed-circuit TV monitoring centre for the National CCTV Programme,” he added.
Speaking about the various plans in the ministries, the governor announced the establishment of a National Scientific Research Council “to ensure that our natural resources are preserved and protected,” he said.
 
Taylor also announced the move of gender affairs from the Ministry of District Administration to the Ministry of Community Affairs and confirmed that the premier had informed him that Members of the Legislative Assembly would be taking the same 3.2 percent rollback as civil servants but that his salary and that of the Leader of the Opposition would be cut by 10 percent.
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Comments (7)

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  1. Lotophagus says:

    The police cannot have access to Immigration’s fingerprinting records as this would be contrary to human rights’ obligations.

  2. Anonymous says:

    I am aware of instances in the past where people that have previously been deported have returned to Cayman under a new identity. This problem would be eliminated through the use of fingerprinting technology. 

  3. Anonymous says:

    why are only work permit holders being finger printed? why can’t ALLresidents be finger printed?! all visitors, cruise ship passengers and all  – EVERYONE should be…..why single out wrok permit holders?

    do you really want to drive these people further away?

    • Anonymous says:

      Holders of work visas and visitors visas are fingerprinted in many countries, for example the USA.This is becoming a mainstreamtactic in border protection.

       

    • Cayman_Visitor says:

      Yes, please fingerprint all the stay-over tourists and cruise ship passengers. And while you’re at it take a throat swab for a DNA sample as well. I want the resulting crash in the tourist industry to drive down the (still) overpriced real estate market so I can buy in at, say, ten to twenty cents on the CI$ (sarcasm intended).

      I love Cayman, its history, culture and people. But all of that is going to be lost in a frighteningly short amount of time if something SMART doesn’t happen FAST. Think Mac did you a favor by negotiating that new loan package? Cayman doesn’t have the GDP, indirect taxation or sustainable spending reductions to pay back that loan, EVER.

      "He hath founded it upon the seas", but the sea of red ink is going to swallow it all up again if something bold and decisive doesn’t happen RIGHT NOW.

      Be blessed..

       

    • Anonymous says:

      I don’t have anything to hide, so finger print me all you want. The waste starts when the finger prints they have on file don’t lead to crimes being solved.

  4. Mat says:

    CNS: "Outlining government plans over the coming year he [the Governor] said there were three key themes. ‘We need to adapt public finances to the new reality ….we need to provide security for our people…..(and )…we need constantly to work to promote and ensure good governance and respect for human rights,’ he said adding the importance of ensuring the independence of the judiciary and other checks and balances in the Constitution."

    Your Excellancy, to me, these are good ideals to pursue… but if you have people and elites in the UK government, the FCO, and Cayman Islands constituency who use the "powers that be" for their own self-interest and does not care for the welfare of Caymanians, locals, and the environment, the place we call home – then the Constitution is immaterial. It is like a mere landlord and tenant’s agreement.

    What will you do to protect the Cayman Islands from powerful people or elites who have monies to do whatever they wish; what will you do to protect us from the "special interest" overseas and people here who would want more than ever to belittle Caymanians out of envy and greed?