Board in dark about GLF

| 13/05/2011

(CNS):The Cayman Islands premier made the decision to terminate the cruise port agreement between government, the Port Authority and the developer GLF construction before telling the Port Authority board of directors, a freedom of information request has revealed. According to the information released by the Port Authority, shown to CNS, it was almost a week after McKeeva Bush wrote to the CEO of GLF saying government and the port authority were ending the deal that the board was informed. Although Bush’s letter states that the chair of the authority was in agreement with the termination, he did not appear to have consulted with the rest of the members.

The Port Authority said that it held no records of correspondence between the premier and the board regarding the termination of the deal with GLF but that the board members had met with premier on 20 April, when he told them that he had terminated the framework agreement. However, Bush sent his letter to Francesco Senis on 14 April, stating that because the government did not believe the firm had the financing in place, the Cayman government would be considering other options for the development of the cruise berthing facilities in George Town.

According to the letter written by the premier,he had the support of the Port Authority chairman on the decision to pull out of the exclusive talks, but it appears that if the chair had been consulted, he in turn had not consulted the board. So far, CNS has been unable to contact the chair to confirm the timeline over when he was consulted about the premier’s decision and why the board’s directors were not involved in the decision process.

The port also states that it has no records of any correspondence between the technical committee or project team, led by Cline Glidden, which has been involved in driving forward the now stalled cruise berth development project. A source close to government told CNS that it appears the premier is now driving the project on his own and may not have the support of those previously involved in the negotiations.

The Port Authority has agreed in the FOI request to release the minutes of the meeting in which Bush informed the board of his decision to dump GLF and start talks with other developers but said it had delayed the release until the draft minutes had been “formally approved” by the board members. On 6 May, when the FOI was answered, the authority said the board had not yet had any further meetings.

Although the premier has not yet confirmed his new plans for the cruise port, it is understood he is now in talks with a Bejing based development company. China Harbour Engineering Company Ltd has reportedly already submitted an MOU to the government regarding their proposal for the facilities. However, sources tell CNS that the government has not yet signed that document.

The premier has stated that the government is now talking to the developers about two other major development projects – the redevelopment of Owen Roberts Airport and the creation of a pier in West Bay at the Cayman Turtle Farm.

Although Bush had told the country that he would reveal the details at the UDP political rally in George Town on Tuesday, the premier failed to deliver and although he said government had plans for a number of infrastructure projects to start sometime this year, no details were forthcoming.

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Comments (30)

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  1. Anonymous says:

    The board made the right decision to keep GLF onboard but the Premier felt otherwise. We know what  the right decision was. We will never get the dock under CHEC.

  2. Anonymous says:

    Stefan Baraud appears to have been operating unilaterally without his Board’s authority and outside hisauthority as Chairman of the Port Authority Board (when he agreed according to McKeeva Bush, Premier) to terminate the Framework Agreement with GLF on 14th April 2011. Decisions made by the Port Authority Board require a majority vote as outlined under Clause 3 (5) of the Port Authority Law which  states “…(that) five members present shall form a quorum at any meeting where decisions shall be arrived by a majority vote “. In this case it seems that no decision was made by the Board, so Baraud acted alone. If this is true, then as a consequence of his action, Baraud should resign or, the remaining Port Authority Board Members should demand his termination – or, the Members themselves should resign in protest. 
    There is little doubt that Mr. Bush, Premier also operated unilaterally, without the approval or backing of his Cabinet or of Mr. Cline Glidden who leads the Port Project Team.  Indeed since Baraud never signed the letter to GLF it appears that the entire responsibility for this autocratic decision rests on the head of Mr Bush.  
    GLF obviously have the capacity to develop the Port and have the finance in place as evidenced by their commitment letter from Citibank, which Mr. Bush has received. So, the motives behind his decision to drop GLF and switch to the China Harbour Group are now, wrongly or rightly, being publically debated and questioned. Putting our trust in our elected representatives is once again being tested as open speculation abounds of fees and bribes being sought from this Chinese Group whose record is somewhat dubious.       
    Before this Port deal unveils a story that even UDP prayer books and Psalms read aloud by the Premier can no longer camouflage, it might be better for the Government to get GLF back to the table while there is still time. A law suit brought by GLF will result in a costly defense of some seemingly indefensible actions, or, at the very least, a chunky cash settlement to GLF at the expense of the Caymanian people. More importantly, further delays in developing the port facilities will cause additional harm to the country’s already ravaged local businesses.        
     

  3. Anonymous says:

    I smell a lawsuit that is going to be stink and costly.

  4. Anonymous says:

    is it any wonder so many people dislike this man?

  5. petermilburn says:

    Makes me wonder why have a board in the first place if one man can just go ahead and make a decision without at least checking with the members first or was that done?

  6. Anonymous says:

    What an autocratic bully!  Bush stomps all over the democratic process, and he treats LA procedures with contempt.  Clearly, the U"D"P is not "democtratic" in the slightest: it's a dictatorship.  We all know Bush will be removed from office in the next election.  He also knows he's gone in 2012.  So, be careful Cayman, there's nothing so dangerous as a dying animal.

  7. Anonymous says:

    Dark dark its a blackhole consuming the very essence of Cayman we need to throws all these wanabe politicians down it never to return hopefully. Serious Cayman if we do not vote this entire group out of politics we are setting our place at the table of impending doom.

  8. mmcLaughlin says:

    UDPis a sinking ship that's just about sank!

  9. Anonymous says:

    Another blunder to be added to the list of blunders in Mr. Charles Clifford's letter on the subject !

  10. Anonymous says:

    All I can say is that The Chuckster warned us all about McKeeva and the UDP and he warned the UDP about stopping his plans for new cruise berthing and cargo docks. He told them that the project would be delayed by at least 2 years if they stopped his plans and now with McDinejad's recent termination of the GLF agreement that two years could turn into 4 years !!! Mckeeva must resign now !!!!!! CG you need to go too…..what happened to all of that smooth talking now huh ???

  11. Anonymous says:

    Heil Herr Bush

  12. Anonymous says:

    The people of the Cayman Islands want to know what Mr. Stefan Baraud has to say!  We also want to hear from all the other People who signed documents relating to the agreement with Royal/GFL.  There is no way one signatory could just decide to cancel this “LEGAL” agreement.
    Come on boys take your muzzles off.  The schools in the Cayman Islands are trying to stomp out bullying, lead by example and stop it in our Government. 
     

  13. Anonymouse says:

    I'm confused.

    Doesn't the constitution say that he has this legal right as Premier? Why is everyone complaining about his decisions when it is the Caymanian majority that voted for this constitution?? And voted for the Premier?

    You're not saying that The People depended on the authors of the constitution to look after Their best interests? Don't tell me that The People actually voted 'yes' for this constitution without reading AND understanding what it said? Are you saying that The People blindly followed the lead of their fellow Christian brethren trusting that he wouldn't steer them wrong?

    Aren't we more educated than that?

    Say it ain't so

    It annoys me that the explanation is that The People are unassuming and trusting when honestly the reason is that they just can't be bothered or are too busy to take the time to educate themselves on what they are voting for AND only hear the parts that they want to hear.

    • Anonymous says:

      11:16 Please direct us to the part of the constitution that gives the premier this power. Just checking to see if you have read same.

      Please also elaborate on who voted him to be premier.

    • Anonymous says:

      You ask "aren't we more educated than that" and you haven't educated yourself on how voting works here. Research your facts before you open your mouth. Mac and the UDP MLA's  didn't get the majority of Caymanian votes, they just each got more than any of the other party's candidates. The votersdo not get to choose the Premier, the MLA's who form a government do.

  14. anonymous says:

    He got us the people in the dark too…..LOL!  This is the Mac show!!

    • Absurdistani says:

      The Mac Show?

      Sad that it wasn't cancelled after the pilot episode.

      How can we change the channel?

  15. Still Waiting says:

    I don't know how the people of Cayman can put up with this, or whatever message they need to receive. Being the leader of a sophisticated and modern society is obviously way beyond his skill set. Granted, the UDP won the election, and by default Mr. Bush, became the Premier, however ineptness does not begin to describe his leadership and if he has the support of his cabinet and party members it is only because they don't want to derail the gravy train they find themselves on. Nice salary, no work involved. There aren't any accounts. He is self-appointed finance minister, but there is no way of knowing what has happened to millions of dollars. First we're broke, then there is a surplus, followed by statements of the dire consequences with FCO of a running a deficit. Arbitrary decisions are another example. What is he doing? It's obvious what the FCO is doing. They are watching Cayman implode and when that happens Mr. Bush will have one more party to blame.

    The FCO gave him enough rope to hang himself but he is meddling with Cayman's future.

  16. tami says:

    A smart move Mac!  Three projects now out of one!  LOL… just have to love him!  Kurt would have never manage to kick off such business deals. Opps… he and aldy never had a business knack!

    • Pending says:

      What 3 deals? We all have yet to hear anything about them. Mac says this and that but never answers questions, explains anything or does anything other than rant and rave about the PPM.

      How about he does his job. The only thing he has proven he is good at is travelling.

      There are no results of anything so far in the last 2yrs because there is absolutely no proof of the crap that comes out his mouth. Hes ays one, changes it, says another, changes it. Same crap, differenty day.

      All we want as a public and as a country are answers. Thats all. Pretty simple really. Unless of course you are Mac.

      Or perhaps yuo know something the rest of us dont?

    • Stiffed-Necked Fool says:

      At least they could have run a lawn-mowing company sucessfully unlike some!

  17. Ray says:

    If the P.A. Board members remain in their positions then they are effectively agreeing with the actions taken. At the very least, it should have been the Board's decision at a proper meeting following their deliberations on the facts. Therefore, if they do not agree with the method of the decision or the action taken and do not wish to appear as totally inept, they should immediately resign from the P.A. Board. If the Chairman actually agreed in advance then he too has no regard for the members of his board.

    The members on any Government Board that is treated with with such contempt & disregard should follow suit. Otherwise they can consider themsleves totally unnecessary and simply chair warmers.

    • anon says:

      Couldn't agree more. In any developed state, where a board of trustees or similar is over-ruled or by-passed in a polictical matter, they almost invariably resign as a statement of protest. Even if they would have agreed with Bush's decision, they should still resign in protest at his approach – it makes them look completely redundant – "yes" men only there for show.  By not resigning they are confirming that fact.

      As for what does Dominic Baraud say about it: – "Do you want french fries with that sir?" I mean, since when does the proprietor of an eatery get to be the big cheese at the port????

       

  18. Anonymous says:

    hahaha…just another day in wonderland….. where is the governor?

    • Anonymous says:

      By voting yes to the new costitution (in fear of gay people) the caymanians have also decided to put the governor aside.

       

  19. Anonymous says:

    Who says he doesn't support one-man-one-vote??? He's the one man, he gets the one vote – simple!