Bush wanted port cop probe

| 25/02/2012

(CNS): The Cayman Islands premier told the Port Authority director that he intended to askthe police to investigate the leak of an MOU he had signed with China Harbour Engineering Company last year as he believed it had come from the port. The revelation comes from the minutes of a Port Authority board meeting in June, which was released on Friday. Following the FOI request made by CNS for access to documentation regarding the collapsed negotiations with GLF Construction and the talks with CHEC over the development of the George Town cruise berthing facilities, the port has posted on its website the minutes from meetings between 30 April and 25 June dealing with the controversial events. 

McKeeva Bush accused the Port Authority on 25 June last year of being the source of the leaked MOU. Expressing his disappointment, he told Paul Hurlston, the port director, and his deputies, Clement Reid and James Parsons, that he was going to have the police look into the leak as it was a serious matter.

However, an RCIPS spokesperson confirmed Friday in the wake of the release of the minutes that the police had never received such a request from the premier.

It was also at this meeting that the premier revealed that he intended to remove some members from the board as he had lost confidence in their ability to be impartial about the cruise facility negotiations when it came to GLF and CHEC.

The documents show the extent of the tensions between all of the board members and in particular the board’s chair, Stefan Baraud, with the premier over the decision to pull out of talks with GLF construction and begin negotiations with CHEC.

The members were particularly concerned about the implications of the legal action which GLF Construction had threatened to take.  The legal issues caused alarm to the board members because of the liability they believed they could face as well as the detrimental impact such action could have on the country as a whole. The members also believed that it could hold up the development of the facilities indefinitely.

As a result, they had all agreed at a meeting on 24 June, the day before the meeting with McKeeva Bush on the 25 June, that they would tell the premier they wanted to go back to the GLF proposal.

According to the minutes, members had unanimously agreed they could not support the premier’s decision to negotiate with CHEC. Baraud told the members that he had met with the Chinese firm and in his opinion they were “not fully prepared to commence the project in a timely manner.”

The deputy chairman,Woody Foster, stated in the 25 June meeting that he had been uncomfortable with the way the process had gone since the initial selection of DECCO and had already expressed those concerns to the premier. As a result of not planning to serve a full term on the port board, the minutes record that Foster took the opportunity to step down there and then.

Despite the position of the board, the legal advice from the authority's lawyers and a report from KPMG all advising against the premier’s decision, the board membership was changed and Bush continued on with the CHEC negotiations. Although he had taken charge of those talks initially, more recently George Town back bench MLA Elio Solomon has been at the forefront of the talks with the Chinese.

At this stage, some ten months after GLF said it was weeks away from being able to mobilize and begin the pier development, there is still no agreement in place with government and a developer for the cruise facilities.

See related CNS story Port releases disputed papers

See minutes here

Category: Politics

Comments (46)

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  1. Anonymous says:

    Apparently legitimate whistle-blowing in the public interest against disgusting bureaucratic misconduct is considered a criminal offence by some at the very top.

    • myview2 says:

      Mac doesn't need any boards…he seems to be a ONE Man Show….One man who will Show us how it is done..his way! Now maybe you can understand how Cabinet is 'selected' and operates!

      Ahhhh, democracy still eludes us! Shame on US!

  2. Anonymous says:

    What i see happening is……pure bbbbbbbureaocratic harasment  LOLOLOLOLOL

  3. Anonymous says:

    LMAO at the pot callin the kettle again.  I mean…

     

    "…the premier revealed that he intended to remove some members from the board as he had lost confidence in their ability to be impartial about the cruise facility negotiations when it came to GLF and CHEC."

     

    and then…

     

    "Despite the position of the board, the legal advice from the authority's lawyers and a report from KPMG all advising against the premier’s decision, the board membership was changed and Bush continued on with the CHEC negotiations."

     

    So whoin actual fact turned out to have an inability to be impartial when it came to GLF and CHEC?  The Premier himself me thinx.

  4. Anonymous says:

    Speaking of the police and Mac… How is that other investigation into the fax sent from Mac's office coming along? Anyone?

  5. Anonymous says:

    I don't mean to sound arrogant, but I'm highly educated, well travelled, and have lived here 20 years. Can anybody explain the role of the Cayman Islands Governor to me?

     

     

    • Knot S Smart says:

      Angelina Jolie.. Is this you?

       

       

    • Govern this! says:

      No one can be sure, I believe it's as a vacationer.

    • so Anonymous says:

      He is the designated parent.

      Remember this.  If your one of the highly educated on Cayman then you are "in the way" of all the rest.

    • Anonymous says:

      ribbon cutter, gala dinners…. and turning a blind eye to local incompetent politicians

    • Al Nomadi says:

      Paid vacation?

    • biker says:

      My father once told me, "the governorship of the Cayman Islands is a parting GIFT to a loyal,  long serving civil servant, from jolly old England. They'll get at least four years of fine living on the beach, are paid more than the president of the United States (by the islanders) and leave with a healthy savings account and pension for their eventual retirement."

    • Anonymous says:

      I can't hear well, I can't see well and I don't want to speak about anything.   No comments.

      • myview2 says:

        Shame that in a democratic society we feel like the three monkeys..'.hear no evil, see no evil and speak no evil'. Puts a new twist on 'evil' doesn't it???

  6. Anonymous says:

    I dont understand why the Premier insisted on the Chinese deal when all the Board and even Glidden recomended GLF. Or am I just naive and the reason is obvious and highly suspicious?

    • Dred says:

      I could tell you why but I don't want to be in court answering for what must be the only logical conclusion and I will leave it at that.

    • Mushroom1 says:

      I don’t get it either! And the lack of transparency only leaves me to think the worst,…even if it the feathers, quack, and waddle aren’t a duck it looks like one to me.

      • Anonymous says:

        Whenever a new Government is elected, their agenda starts with appointing their supporters to various positions in Government. Now let us set up the various boards, these individuals are also chosen from faithful supporters, Cayman business owners, or those who want to be. Then it is suddenly discovered, that there is a great conflict of interest, your board members trying to profit personally through Government projects! Is this a familiar senario?  I believe that if all these boards are necessary, there has to be another way of appointing, other than by politicians. People on these boards need to be honest, qualified individuals, with the country and it's people's interest at heart, just as our politicians should be.  This is a trend that has existed for as long as I can remember and one that I believe should be changed.

         

        • Anonymous says:

          The minutes posted on the Port Authority website clearly state that the board member who had a conflict consistently stated his conflict and recused himself when appropriate, including the meeting on June 24th when the board decided to recommend that government resume talks with GLF.

    • Anonymous says:

      ON TOP OF THAT he is threatening to fire them all and threatening police intervention to prevent the details of the MOU from being made public??? GO FIGURE CAYMAN..

  7. Anonymous says:

    A very popular Premier!!

  8. Could says:

    Could McKeeva do any more to sabotage his party and the next election? I think he is working for the PPM.

     

     

    • Anonymous says:

      I don't care that he is sabotaging his party. I care that he is sabotaging us – the people.

  9. Knot S Smart says:

    It would have been quite nerve wracking for Mac if he had reported this to the police!

    Because then the police would constantly be visiting him about 'the investigation'  and this would have kept him in a state of tension about which investigation they are talking about…

    • Dred says:

      And in the end who knows which direction the investigation would have gone….like why CHEC?

  10. Anonymous says:

    I have read the papers just released and I have to say that I am proud of those board members including Mr. Baraud and Mr. Woody Foster who stood up to the Premier and any attempt to avoid proper procedure. It is good to know that there are people of principle who put country first despite what a politician wants to do.

    • Anonymous says:

      I believe Woody and the whole Foster family have shown themselves to be great Caymanians as illustrated by Woody's integrity in this affair as well as their generousity and assistiance to the people of Cayman after Ivan.  Do you all still remember how they gave away as much as they could from their supermarkets and were the first to say that any additional transportation costs due to use of air travel for goods would NOT be passed on to the consumers?

      I would love to see the likes of him run for political position!!

       

  11. McCarron McLaughlin says:

    The premier has got an EGO the size of the universe – he was going to ask the poilce to investigate this leak while he himself is the subject to an investigation.  Why didn't he ask the police to investigate the leak? Because it had no weight!

    He should have asked the police to give the public an update on his investigation.

    • Stiffed-Necked Fool says:

      What truly baffles me, is how did the rest of the Board stay on. Here they are making a decision, unamously, for what they feel is the best for Cayman and then the Bully just comes along and tells them what they have to do. I see a couple of Civil Servants so I can understand maybe them, but where is the cojones of the other mambers and now I can also understand the reasoning of the new appointees to the Board! Congrats Stefan and Woody!

      • Anonymous says:

        Congratulations to them yes indeed. Where personally I feel they fall short is in not letting the public know exactly why they disagree with Mr. Fidel, yet they must have their own good reasons for that. 

  12. so Anonymous says:

    It would seem the meaning of transparency was taught in the 6th grade in Grand Cayman,  Which would explain to the rest of us why so many have no idea what it means.  Why is a man who is not as smart as a regular 5th grader and who has proven it time and time again still in charge of so much and so many here?  Is it really because he is still smarter than the majority?  The UK has stepped in at T&C and has started the process of saving them from themselves.  The sooner it begins here the better for the future of grand Cayman as a whole.  And yes we all know that is not what so many of you want but it is better to have someone stop another from eating themselves to death if their lives are precious to you.

    • Anonymous says:

      The reason that McKeeva is still in charge of so much and so many here is because West Bayers keep putting he and his cronnies back in power with a four strong voting bloc. You might like to ask yourself WHY West Bayers keep voting him back in? Could it be that McKeeva is throwing something their way for their vote? And now there are many West Bay residents who are moaning about McKeeva supporting Dart to close a section of the West Bay Road. You guys elected him and I think that those of you who opposed him did not even field any opposition candidates for West Bay in the last election!! In addition to that you West Bayers stick the rest of the Island with these four UDP election after election. Please excuse me if I don’t have a lot of sympathy for the West Bay alliance against the moving of the West Bay Road!!

      • so Anonymous says:

        Like most of the other average intelligence posters I easily figured out why west bayers do what they do.  But they have figured out that a large group of fools is a match to a few with intelligence so they are still a force to contend with here in Cayman.

    • Anonymous says:

      Never question McKeeva's intelligence. He is a very smart man.

       

      Question his ethics.

  13. Anonymous says:

    McKeeva really and truly disgusts me.

    He is a bully and a tyrant.

    that he feels he can use the police as his personal 'army' smacks of a power-mad dictator. He will use all the resources at his disposal for his own personal benefit and gain – not to do the right thing or the fair thing or whats best for the country. Its the same way he uses the Speaker to stifle opposition. The same stink attitude that makes him lash out and file lawsuits at his constituents for expressing a different view.

    He will not listen to ANYONE, senior civil servants, his udp puppets, professional advisors, lawyers, accountants or bankers, the press or the PEOPLE who pay his fricking fat salary and pension for life. An ungrateful fop needs a slap and he definitely needs to be taken down a peg or two.

    I cannot and will not support McKeeva or UDP. That is NOT what is best for me or my country: I dont agree with this type of crap and that type of attitude.

    You think my son that I pay all his bills for will lay up in my house and disrespect me?? na today, bobo! Na tomorrow either.

    He dont represent me in no way shap or form and I am ashamed to be Caymanian because of his retarded behaviour– something it hurts to admit out loud

  14. Anonymous says:

    DICTATORSHIP!

  15. Anonymous says:

    Sounds like a Cohen thing all over again.  Cohen deal is better for the country.  Was it?  CHEC is better for the country!  Is it?  Lord help us if history repeats itself once more.  Now I know the definition of bully.

  16. Anonymous says:

    what a shambles by mckeeva……anywhere else in the world this would have led to the removal of the premeir

  17. Anonymous says:

    is this good governence, mr governor?

  18. anonymous says:

    GLF was not weeks away from mobilization- that's easy to say now but in reality none of the approvals( Planning, BCU, Coastal Works, work permits, Trade & Business, etc) were in place and those would take a minimum of 6 months to get those even with strong Cabinet support. So that was clearly nonsense. The actual funding was not in place either although they said they were going to put in their own money and may have started without full funding-no serious company would do that however. It is clear they were not "weeks away from mobilization". That was only a political statement from GLF to justify their claim against Government.

    However, it was clear they were further ahead than CHEC was at that time.

    Regarding the board members concerns- they have a right to step down if their authority was being undermined. They are really only serving at pleasure of the sitting government anyhow. Where the problem comes in this case is that they all did not step down. That leaves a question on the ones that did not as well as the replacements. Good job Woody and Stefan.

    As for Ellio Solomon, he has thrown the big dice on this. When this turns into the really big political disaster that it will given FOI, He will lose his seat no matter how much else he did. He has now become the 'Face' of this deal and will suffer as a result of it. Clever of Mac- just as he made Mark & John-John the 'face' of the BT dump. Goodbye guys.

    • Anonymous says:

      “Mobilization” does not necessarily mean “breaking ground”.

      On a project of the size and scope under discussion, obtaining actual financing and/or commencing final design would be “mobilization”.

  19. Anonymous says:

    Can you imagine what would happen to this country if it goes for independence ?

    Unfortunately we are dealing with a majority of religious extremists in this country that you can have sign anything once you tell them the gays are coming.  It worked for the constitution, it will work for anything.

    It is all about distraction . . . . . . .

     

    • Concerned Caymanian says:

      What are you talking about?  The gays are here!  And that is one thing I am not concerned about.