Miller presses for vote clarity

| 13/04/2012

ezz omov (229x300).jpg(CNS): The independent member for North Side says that the goal to secure equality and real democracy in Cayman politics is a long way from over, despite the premier’s surprise announcement on Wednesday. Ezzard Miller, who has spearheaded the one man, one vote campaign for a people-initiated referendum on the subject, said that there were now two main goals. Firstly, to ensure the ballot was based on the petition question and that government did not attempt to place several confusing options in front of people, and secondly, to encourage the entire electorate, despite the summer vacation, to came out and vote on 18 July in favour of single member constituencies.

He said the petition would also continue so that the premier would see that hecould not stem the ground swell of support or momentum in the community for one man, one vote even with the announcement of the summer ballot and by campaigning against it. Miller told CNS that he would be pushing for a simple yes/no question on the ballot as advocated by the petition.

The North Side representative said that if the government ballot ended up being a confusing list of variables on the theme, such as a national list or other options, there would, if the petition continued, be a mandate to push for a people’s ballot with one simple question that could ensure a clean majority vote.

“We need to ensure this vote is not confusing,” he said. “A ballot containing more than one question could make it impossible to get the necessary 50% on any question.” This, he warned, could see government declare the ballot lost and maintain the status quo. “We need to ensure the ballot question is clear and that voters are not confused with multiple choices. A referendum should be just one yes or no question.”

He said that because the premier had indicated that the United Democratic Party would be campaigning against single member constituencies, the one man, one vote campaign needed even more volunteers to get out in the community and put forward the case.

Miller was not too concerned over the premier’s decision to opt for a summer poll at short notice as there was enough support to win, but, he said, it would require considerable work. Up against government machinery, Miller said he did not feel there would be a need to run an expensive education campaign for one man,one vote if they could recruit enough volunteers.

“We have found since we started the petition that talking to people one-on-one in their homes has been the most effective way of explaining the pros of single member constituencies. I am appealing to people to join the existing group of volunteers and get out into the community to spread the word about the opportunity that Cayman now has to embrace a truly equitable and democratic voting method.”

Miller admitted that he was surprised by the premier’s announcement. “Despite the obvious ground swell of support for one man, one vote, I still expected him to hold out on the referendum,” he added. He also said it would now be interesting to see how the other UDP members took to being informed that government would be mounting an education campaign that would seek to promote multi-member constituencies because he believed some UDP members were not opposed to one man, one vote.

Embracing the opportunity to do whatever he could to ensure the May 2013 elections would be held under the principle of one man, one vote, the single member representative said the window of opportunity to convince those who were not yet decided was short but he was confident that the people would support the change.

Miller said it was also important to debunk the myths circulating about single member constituencies, in particular the fallacies of extra costs. He said people had enough common sense to realise that the country doesn’t need 18 fire stations or 18 constituency offices in Cayman. People are sensible enough to know, he added, “that they deserve better and more accountable representation.”

Category: Politics

Comments (47)

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  1. Anonymous says:

    About the One Man One Vote (OMOV) Single Member Constituencies (SMC) has been enjoying sufficient discussions with invigorating arguments on both sides of the spectrum. What would be interesting is if a "Table Top Exercise" would take place in open forum and "projected” on Power Point where spectators could see exactly how it would work. The required MLA'S for each respective constituency could be hypothetically elected. Once that process has been completed- then phase 2 could be something like what will now happen at the Legislative Assembly (LA) where the voting takes place to elect a Coalition Government. For me personally- and in the absence of personalities should prove rather interesting- as one would see clearly their objectivity and what made them decide individually( even though I suspect it would/maybe by secret ballot) – and most interestingly who will be elected Ministers. The other facet for ministerial positions which is done by his Excellency the Governor would not be necessary at this time. In my humble opinion- there would be plenty to take from an exercise of this nature- and I am sure a lot of "Kinks" would or maybe be identified which perhaps could be better understood or rectified before the real thing- and what better time to resolve issues than before the real thing. So as Part of the “Education Process” I appeal to everyone to break down those barriers and put it in very simple terms so that people could have the benefit of understanding in their own way- Most importantly – “Remember thatwe were not all made equal”. A picture paints a thousand words” and lastly- those who think learning has stopped- are amongst the congregation of the dead.

  2. Anonymous says:

    Ezzard keep collecting signatures. Sad experience shows we cannot trust UDP or rely on anything Mckeeva says.

    Mckeeva is determined to derail this petition and is now publicly mobilising his resources against it.
    By any means necessary: confusing people, its too expensive, promising to hold referendum AFTER 2013 election, it will lead to more demands forinfrastructure, its divisive, claiming people will have their voting rights ‘shrunken’ (sic), ducking out of public debate, now sabotage by doing referendum in July when less voters available to support and, muddling the referendum question

    Keep collecting signatures

  3. Jordanian says:

    I think ezzerd not happy that mr bush agree for refrandom he was hope that mr bush don’t do so
    But ezzerd need learn lot about politics lol

    • Knot S Smart says:

      You cant write!

      Where you from?

    • Randyke # 1 says:

      be careful what you wish for Ezzard because you might just get it. The premier used the element of surprise on you and you not going to get to be the Premier either because your views are too extreme and radical. You certainly frighten away this poster from voting for you.

      • Anonymous says:

        Amen to that, Ezzard is way too extreme and cares only abouthis own little turf war to care about the entire country.  I am  grateful that I am not in his district!

    • Dred says:

      I think only blind zombies don't realise that everything Mac does has SOMETHING behind it. For a simpleman he has a lot of commonsense and an uncanny way of manipulating people as he has with his West Bay Zombies.

      If he wanted SO MUCH TO APPEASE EZZARD why did he not:

      1) Agree to the Referrendum in November

      2) State IMMEDIATELY what the question would be

      3) Request it to be a holiday in order to allow each and every Caymanian a proper opportunity to cast their vote. If not a full holiday a half day.

      4) Explain that the Government would lay out an UNBIASED list of pros and cons to each system with inputs by both sides of the argument.

      5) Request that the people for OMOV submit by X deadline a full list of all pros for OMOV and all cons to current system. The UDP would put forward a Pros of Current system and Cons to OMOV. This would allow both sides to challenge the others program. It would allow each side to also counter the other during debate.

      6) Request for a debate to be held in one month's time after to allow each party to properly argue their case to the people of the Cayman Islands. The debate would be carried on radio and TV to allow those who can not get their to hear the debate.

      What we need people is for this to all be vetted thoroughly so that MOLARKY can be filtered from facts.

      I make no bones about it I support OMOV because I believe that two important objectives will be served that counter TO ME all cons.

      1) Accountability – I believe OMOV offers far greater accountability. If the person you elect to office can not show what they have done and how they earned their big salary then they are removed in the coming election.

      2) Party Breakup – I believe it will allow for independents the opportunity to compete on a more even playing field. No longer will one person with massive power in one segment of the electorate pull DEAD WEIGHTS into the LA with his pull.

      There are more benefits to this system but these are the two that I find the most important. We want when we elect 15 or now 18 members we get 18 people who are capable of debating issues not 1 from one party and 1 from the other plus an independent. Afterall we pay 18 people if we only wanted 1 or 2 thoughts then we shoudl only pay 1 or 2 people. EARN YOUR KEEP.

      Thats my take.

       

    • anonymous says:

      It is important for the East End and N. Side members spearheading the petition for the people initiated referendum to be aggressive and  vigilant about responding promptly to every public presentation by the UDP during their campaign.
      Opposition rebuttals must be articulate and comprehensive to counter attack any attempt by the UDP and its leader to undermine or confuse constituents under the sound of their voice. Careful note must be taken to what is said and the potential harm of people misininterpreting the true purpose of the call for a One Man One Vote Referendum and that is clearly, a democratic process that allows the citizens to choose their own representative that will best serve them. The opposition must articulately explain to the people that they will elect the person of their choice, not a shark with small fry swimming around in his belly.

      You must followup promptly,comprehensively, and aggressively without fail.

    • Anonymous says:

      Ezzard  & Arden, do not allow McKeeva Bush to bring to waste these signatures.

      Insist that the governor change the date to August or September when everyone is back from vacation. 

      Those of you who insist on May, well you are not helping any as this is mid April, that would not at all be sufficient time to get 7 -8,000 or 10,000    secured signatures to see this through. Its time to think before  making those silly comments. We need constructive input.

      This is not a drill, this is the real deal. a people's initiated referendum.

      • Anonymous says:

        Well not all of us get to take our vacations in the summer months either, many of us have to wait for months that everyone else is listing as when to hold the vote.  In other words there is never going to be an ideal date for everyone.  At least a date has been set and still you all moan and groan.  Absentee ballot is real simple but that would take making an effort….never mind

    • Another Anon says:

      OMW!! This exactly the reason why we NEED "one man, one vote". Morons like this should not be allowed to vote more than once!

  4. Cayman islands says:

    Mr ezzerd want his way that’s not right I think it will be
    1: as it’s now
    2: 1 man 1 v
    3: national list
    It cant be ezzerd way never ezzerd way right . It have to be What people in cayman want
    Then people will chose what the want

  5. Anonymous says:

    I agree with Mr. Miller on this. I don't trust anything coming from Mac!

    And at the debate just two weeks ago Mr. Cline Glidden said that nov of this year was too early to allow for needed Public Education campaign on One Person One Vote and that, along with not having the funds now, were major reasons for having the referendum next May (the same time as National Elections). Now all of a sudden Mac announces July. Of course knowing that July is when many voters are off island.

    Seems the UDP left hand is often not aware of what the right hand is doing.

    I'll be here whenever it is though….this is too important to not vote. Time for more equality and accountability here….time for "Modernised" voting system.

    • Anonymous says:

      "..just two weeks ago Mr. Cline Glidden said.."

       

      Mac had this plan all along to make Cline Glidden Jr. look like an a$$ – dont know who is more fool, Mac for sending Cline Glidden Jr. or Cline GLidden Jr. for showing up to defend Mac, only to now 'get thrown under the bus'.

    • Anonymous says:

      Based on the position that Cline took on the debate, I suspect that he went back to his party and influenced his leader to hold the referendum earlier. His position was let the people decide, he said he felt comfortable with whatever system the people chose. This is such an unusual move by the UDP I doubt it was Mc’s doing?

  6. UDP Supporter says:

    Defeat this petition! I call on all my fellow women from West Bay to vote this down as only people who are against our Premier and our district are for this! We as a Christian community need to unite before it is too late and heathens and so called "Caymanians" take over!

    • WeSoF*%#ed says:

      You're either a comedian or crackhead… I'm not sure…

    • Another Anon says:

      Perhaps we should include the following option on the ballot:

      "Do you want West Bay to be severed from the rest of the Cayman Islands and to form its own Republic with Big Mac as the Premier?"

      I bet you'd get a heck of a lot of "aye" on that question from the "Christians" from West Bay.

  7. Anonymous says:

    If Cayman plans to move forward into single member constituencies then they may as well go all the way. Redraw the voting districts trumping traditional boundaries and have members required to live in the districts that they represent so they are there and available to their constituency. That is how it is done in the US a model that people like to use here.

    • Bush Doctor says:

      I agree with this. This is what mr Arden McLean the East End MLA. Should be msot concerned with. He seems to be more interested in making a statement for other people not the East End people while not living there. So I question the effectiveness of his representation. We need to have politicians confined to the same boundaries as voters! And this should be done with the referendum.

      • Anonymous says:

        That is tribalistic thinking. Arden McLean is an MLA in the Cayman Islands Legislative Assembly. Obviously he is entitled to speak on issues which affect these Islands as a whole. He is particularly entitled to speak  if his constituents are enjoying less rights than constituents in other districts. On the other hand who are you to say that he is not effectively representing his constituents? I am quite sure you are not one of them. It is a matter for the voters in each constituency to decide whether a representative who lives outside the district can and, in the case of an incumbent, is effectively representing them.

        The referendum question is based on the petition. It says what it says. You are just trying to confuse the issue in order to split the support for one man, one vote.  

    • Anonymous says:

      That is false. U.S. Representatives are not required to live in the congressional district they represent. Since you have to cite false data to support your case you have obviously already lost the argument.  

      http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/U.S._Representative

      Single-member constituency boundaries have already been drawn by the Electoral Boundaries Commission taking into account all of the criteria set out in the Constitution. 

  8. EYE ON THE ISLAND says:

                                              CONTINUE WITH THE SIGNATURES

    Mr. Miller is correct in demanding clarification on just what the Premier is proposing we are voting on. Trust is something we no longer have when it comes to dealing with this government on anything especially when it is something Mr. Bush opposes like ONE MAN ONE VOTE and SINGLE MEMBER CONSTITUECIES. The thinking people of these Islands have awaken to a different course of  priorities and if we have to take the leader  kicking and screaming into the twenty first century then so be it. “THE GREATER THE POWERS, THE MORE DANGEROUS THE ABUSE”. EDMUND BURK speech, Middlesex election, 1771. That was two hundred and forty one years ago. You must agree that we must turn the page on political brinkmanship that is not supported by a majority of the people. The Premier must state immediately the exact wording on what we are voting for and continue the signatures on the petition until Mr. Arden McLean and Mr. Miller say they are satisfied with the Premier’s proposal.         

  9. Jonas Dwyer says:

    Mr. MIller's tone is very measured,  Does this belie an inate fear that is being hidden by carefully chosen words.  Hmmmmm?

    • Anonymous says:

      It shows a distrust of the Premier who always has a trick up his sleeve.  

    • ohhhh says:

      ohhhhh how sinister, its a conspiracy theory, Miller is out to get us all!!! Man go find something to do nah

  10. EYE ON THE ISLAND says:

    Mr. Miller is right in a demand for clarity or we could be hoodwinked again. We can not trust our leader in any form or fashion and that is the bottom line trust.

    • Uriel says:

      What Ezzard Miler should have been doing all along, was educating the people as to what one man vote really means. That's the CLARITY that is needed. Instead of brainwashing Cayman's youth with ideas of what he would d'o if in power, even though impossible, as long as we are a British Colony.

  11. Anonymous says:

    The traditional districts need to be redrawn so that each MLA representative has approx the same number of constituents. The number of constituents per MLA needs to trump the traditional district boundaries. The number of constituents in North Side and in East End will be abouthalf of those in other districts. This needs to be adjusted as it is not fair.

    The traditional district mentality no longer serves the country.

    • Anonymous says:

      Seeing that this argument has only recently surfaced it is obviously just an attempt by Mac and the UDP to deflect on the issue of single member constituencies and get at Ezzard and Arden who have brought the petition. With 18 single member constituencies the national average number of voters per district would be 834. Obviously there can be variations plus or minus around that number. For example in the U.S. each congressional district is a single member constituency and the average number of people per district is 646,946, yet the largest district has a population of 905,316 while the smallest has a population of 495,304. Almost 600 voters each for EE and NS which can be rounded up so that each entitled to their own MLA. On a purely numbers basis it is more of question for Cayman Brac and Little Cayman which have only about 1,000 voters yet have two MLAs. However, the Constitution requires that regard is paid to existing electoral districts.

        

      • Anonymous says:

        You are misguided and incorrect as I have nothing to do with the UDP or Mac and am in favor of single member constituencies but find the tribal district mentality to be destructive and no longer serves the best interest of the country in general. Perhaps the it worked well in the past but the insular mentality is no longer helpful.

        And this is not the US. based upon the numbers shown.

        • Anonymous says:

          I doubt it since your comments seem designed to create confusion about the referendum.

          The point is not about the absolute numbers but about the principle of one man, one vote in single member constituencies. There is no absolute rule anywhere that each constituency must have exactly the same number of voters. That is the point.

           

          • Anonymous says:

            Do you undersrand what approx means?

            • Anonymous says:

              Read the Constitution about the matters must be taken into account in deciding boundaries. Number of voters, albeit important, is only one factor.

    • Jonas Dwyer says:

      True East End and NOrth Side are so small they should be joined together. One Man one Vote.  haha

  12. Anonymous says:

    First of all the Premiers agreement for referendum falls when many are off island and is POLITRICKS in other respects as well…….He thinks setting a date for referendum in July will slow down the petition process and reduce the amount of names on it.  He is also trying to divert attention away from the fact the Govt. has a humongous deficit.  And to think he wants to take Govt money….our money….. and use it to try to teach us how to vote????   Don't be fooled again or anymore by anytthing this bully spits out people.  We have to take him and his entire party out of Cayman Politics forever!

    • Anonymous says:

      the following are exerpts from the Centre for Government and Democracy which i found interesting bearing in mind our current national discussion.

       

      "Proportional Representation (PR) is the most widely used set of electoral systems in the world"

      "PR requires Multi-Member districts"

      "the recent past has seen a sharp growth in the interest of porportional electoral arrangements and the adaption of mixed electoral systems"

      • Anonymous says:

        Yes, but what does the report say about One Man, One Vote?  It is interesting you mention only the multi-member proportional electoral arrangements, but does it say whether or not 1 person can vote 6 times, or only for 1 time for only 1 candidate in the multi-member district?    Here is a suggestion for you.  Rather than quoting excerpts to try and prove your own agenda, why don't you just point people to the actual report, who wrote it, where they can find it or on what website, and let people read the entire report themselves and draw their own conclusions.   Because it all depends on the author, the origin of the report and what agendas come into play.   To the readers, please take everything you hear with a grain of salt, and don't take at face value everything you hear or that someone tells you.    Do like the Beoreans in the Bible, they checked the scriptures diligently to see if what the Apostle Paul was telling them was true.   The Bible says the Devil can misquote scriptures for his own use and to support his propaganda.  So check things for yourself.  Use your commonsense and reach your own conclusions.  My commonsense tells me that one man should only deserve one vote and have no more votes over his fellowman who has equal standing with him.   But that is my opinion.   You educate yourselves and form your own opinions, and then do what you think is right.  Don't let others tell you how to think or do what other people tell you to do. 

        • Anonymous says:

          And pray tell and why should the people listen to your dribble?

          • Anonymous says:

            People should pay attention to the poster because he/she knows what they are talking about whule people who confuse "dribble" with "drivel" should definitely be ignored. 

          • Anonymous says:

            You cannot find anything sensible or intelligent to say to refute the poster's message, so you attack the messenger, huh?  That, coupled with your grammer and spelling errors, demonstrate clearly to whom we should be listening.