Govern for the next generation, not for the next election

| 07/05/2012

Fully supported, aided and abetted by his UDP supporting cast inside the Legislative Assembly and their advisors and party members, the premier has hijacked the people- initiated referendum and made it very difficult for the proponents of One Man One Vote (OMOV) to succeed.

The premier has done this in the face of 4,000 plus signatures on a petition, and the overwhelming popular support for One Man One Vote and Single Member Constituencies (up to 80 per cent) in all polls conducted in the media.

Why has the premier and his Government done this disservice to the people whom they claim to love and represent? Because he knows that if given a level playing field, the majority of the voters would vote for equality.

The UDP and the premier’s greatest fear is that this type of people empowerment will not serve them well in the next election.

The Cayman Islands Constitution that came into force on 6 November 2009 provided for two types of referenda – one a government-initiated referendum that is not binding and the second a people-initiated referendum. These referenda are provided for in section 69 and 70.

The UDP government has circulated a Referendum Bill, which they intend to ram down the throats of Caymanian voters using their majority vote in the Legislative Assembly, simply to achieve their objective of retaining the status quo that benefits them politically and dramatically increases their chances of forming the next government, despite their miserable failures during their current term in office. The UDP has no concern or care for the next generation, only for the next election.

The Referendum Bill, as circulated by the UDP Government, has two fundamental flaws. Firstly, it is not binding, and secondly, it does not commit the UDP government to implement single member constituents and One Man One Vote for the election in May 2013.

Therefore, the OMOV group, through the Leader of the Opposition, will be filing the appropriate amendments to the bill, although it will be futile if people donot lend their voices and support to force the premier to make the necessary changes which will give the voting public a fighting chance.

The amendments will call for an implementation timetable to be included in the referendum question, so that when we succeed at the polls, there can be no doubt that the May 2013 elections will be conducted on the Electoral Boundary Commission’s recommendation for 16 single member constituencies in Grand Cayman.

In addition, the amendments will make the results of the referendum binding and, most importantly, increase the chance for success by requiring only 50 per cent plus one of the votes cast and not of the registered electors.

I cannot say that we are surprised that the premier and his UDP cohorts are stacking the deck against the OMOV referendum. This action is typical of the incompetent nature of their administration and people only have to look at their track record on the economy. So far, for all the hoopla and for all their bypassing of due process, they have not been able to get a single one of their economy-saving, job-creating, mega projects off the ground. It's all been promises, promises. You would think they were mating elephants – done at high altitude, lots of noise and a long time to see the results.

Those who have benefited or are set to benefit from their economic proposals can be counted on your hands and have enough fingers left to hold a large cigar.

The UDP intends to continue to dictatorially and unilaterally deprive the voters in Cayman of having a system of equality and accountability, even if it costs them the election in 2013.

The only hope of getting the necessary changes to our election law to bring in voter equality and greater accountability and responsibility from politicians, is to force the UDP to make these changes to the Referendum bill or to remove the UDP from office in the next election.

The One Man One Vote group intends to continue its campaign for the implementation of one man one vote, in spite of the difficult odds and the government using the country’s resources to campaign against the referendum it has called.

It is preposterous, unprecedented and downright insulting to the intelligence of Caymanians for the government to call a referendum and them immediately start a campaign against it. The only logical explanation for such unconventional and irrational action is that the UDP wants to disrupt the democratic process.

This is vintage UDP/McKeeva. They have systematically eroded, ignored and abused the rules and conventions of good governance in all areas – the constitutional requirements (except for personal benefits), the legislative process, the procurement of goods and services, the awarding of contracts, the termination of contracts, the granting of duty waivers and the granting of other concessions. They have boldly proclaimed that in their definition and practice of good governance, "substance" is preferred to process. To them, systems of control and accountability, such as the Central Tenders Committee, the Public Finance and Management Law and other legal requirements for good governance are impediments and bureaucratic inconveniences that they are not prepared to endure.

The people who have a vested interest in the continued success of Cayman need to respond to these UDP bad governance manifestations in the most powerful way possible and force the UDP and the premier to change course before the good ship Cayman is completely grounded and destroyed on the rocks of Bush incompetence.

The people must force the premier and his UDP government to accept the amendments to the Referendum Bill and let the voters decide. The premier will only respond to large scale civic demonstrations and involvement. This is a similar to and as important an issue as the changes to the planning laws of the seventies and cadastral survey, which saw the streets of George Town full of demonstrators demanding their rights.

It is time for action against the UDP and its premier.

Let's put one thousand people in George Town on Wednesday lunch time for a meeting in Heroes Square to show the UDP and its premier that Cayman still belongs to us and we honour the sacrifices of our forefathers. Let's demonstrate to the world that we intend to put the good ship Cayman back on course and preserve it for the next generation.

It is time to govern for the next generation and not for the next election.

Category: Viewpoint

Comments (26)

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  1. Anonymously IRON CLAD says:

    Mr Miller, I would like to say that REGARDLESS of what many have said and will say against you and what you are doing for not just those of us that truly see and understand what McKeeva is doing to our country and the NASTY EVOLUTION of our Politics here in our our 'Young and Tender' Cayman Islands, and the affects that is is having and that it WILL have into the FUTURE, but for those that are just SIMPLY TOO FOOLISH to see – I hereby DECLARE that WE(those of us that understand and appreciate) – WE SALUTE YOU and COMMEND YOU HIGHLY for THE STAND that YOU and Mr Mclaughlin are taking on this UNRULY Premier and UDP Govt. We Salute you both on the behalf of the unfortunate Foolish as well.

    We ONLY ASK that you contninue this FIGHT FOR ALL of US and OUR FUTURE in this here, Cayman Islands.

    We also want to extend our SINCEREST THANK YOU to ALL OTHERS that are playing a part of this CHALLENGING PROCESS. We THANK YOU TRULY.

     

    Sincerely,

    A Caymanian that has been angered for a long time… a Caymanian that Sees and Appreciates.

    • noname says:

      Scratching my head….,! I salute you Ezzard for dissing the disabled?!

      Scratch scratch , me head!

      17:38 Truly lost your senses and no self respect.
      Do you have any disabled family by the way?

    • john Anonymous says:

      You have the audacity to call yourself a Caymanian? How embarrassing for the rest of us.This man is a bigger problem than Mac.

  2. Squid says:

    And Ezzard are you sure you are governing for the next generation instead of the next election???  To me, all you politicians out there are for one and the same thing.

  3. Another Anon says:

    Nothing democratic about the United Democratic Party, folks.

  4. The Crown says:

    Ez you know way i is.. I signin OMOV wid dey biggest MAGIC MARKA ya kin buy

  5. Anonymous says:

    "You would think they were mating elephants – done at high altitude, lots of noise and a longtime to see the results." HAHAHAHA LOL

    • Florence Goring-Nozza says:

      Anonymous it would be nice if you would  state your name, like I did it lends support to the pursuasion that your real focus is what we are all facing and not what you seem to portray in this forum.
      Would you be so kind as to consult with Mr. McField and ask him to explain what he meant when he stated on air publicly in the ears of the listeners including yourself, on Rooster this morning, that the governor is the head of the constitution .
      It is a pity that you failed to understand  that I did not state that  the signatures was already handed over! Of course its not the time for that.  Shame on you! I stated a handover of 'POWER"  to the cabinet, there's a difference. You may want to consult with Mr. McLaughlin why he allowed this to happen while his party was in power and in charge of the final review!
      I personally am of the opinon that maybe the opposition appears to be panicking and perhaps is sending mixed messages. I like anyone else could be wrong but it appears that way.  And Yes,I am very happy to report that I have not failed to understad that the government has hijacked the process, it is obvious.
      I do regret though that you seem to have failed to comprehend  what I am saying; that perhaps the opposition should get the governor to engage in a more inclusive role, get him more involved with the process after all, he is the governor isnt he?
      The main problem here is that the power granted to the cabinet who empowers the premier seems to be looked upon with regret by the PPM who played a major role in the final drafting of the constitution. It really  is a disgusting situation where one party is responsible for the imlementation of the constitution, another party wins and now the same constitution is coming back to bite the party that implemented the 2009 constitution!
      Anonymous, you seem to be very passionate about this  would you consider channeling that passion into advising the elected officials responsible ; that In the future perhaps if they would put  some checks and balances in place or not remove them !  since it matters not which party is in power,  the same constitution judges all parties. Therefore the Premier  and his cabinet is enjoying the same power and privileges as did the PPM when they were the elected government up until 2009.
      In consideration of the Caymanian people all we are asking, is for the democratic process to be legislated so that everyone can finally vote for the candidate of our own choice which is only fair and can only come about through the one Man One Vote.
      Bear in mind that  both these parties want the same thing "Power." This is the main reason why many of us do not go to battle for politicians, as you more often than not find yourself supporting an elected official that do not support you at all or have your real interest at heart. This outcome is a prime example of politicians thinking about themselves and their hunger for  more powe

      • Anonymous says:

        (scratching head) huh??? is anyone else getting what she's trying to say or am I just dense?

      • Anonymous says:

        My name is not important. Let the facts and reasoning speak for themselves as to the quality of person who is writing.

        XXXXXX

  6. Anonymous says:

    To update Ezzard about this issue. On the radio last week the government has confirmed that the referendum will be binding, so that is no longer an issue. In case some might be confused by this news it is good for the OMOV cause. It sort of surprises me more people aren't happy with the developments in the referendum.

    • Anonymous says:

      The govt. said it would be binding? OK, it is alright then because they govt. has never flip-flopped, or misled or lied before.

      The Referendum Law must say that it will be binding or their verbal assurances do not mean squat.  

  7. EYE ON THE ISLAND says:

    Well said Mr. Miller. People have to come out and stand up for their country and they can't do it tomorrow it has to be now.

  8. Democracy Now says:

    It must be obvious politicans do pay attention to CNS and the forums. This is heartening only because the people have seen the dismal failure of the Legislative Assembly and it's elected members.to steer or govern the country. They're pointing it out. The present issue or issues revolve around the Premier. But more importantly all politicans.. from both sides.. must see also that people have lost total faith in the workings of government. We have witnessed childish antics and incompetence at a time when crucial decisions must be made when all the while a large group are collecting enormous salaries and benefits. This whole escapade, with the help of CNS and the forums has not only shed a light on how exactly politics works but has asked the question why we put up with it as the comments continue to show a deterioration of faith in government becoming what we want it to be. We need not only better representation but better people. OMOV will be a start. But it is still the outstanding people who will be needed to bring us true democracy.

  9. Anonymous says:

    "The amendments will call for an implementation timetable to be included in the referendum question, so that when we succeed at the polls, there can be no doubt that the May 2013 elections will be conducted on the Electoral Boundary Commission’s recommendation for 16 single member constituencies in Grand Cayman."

     

    What about Cayman Brac and Little Cayman? Where do you stand on that district, Mr. Miller?

  10. Florence Goring-Nozza says:

    Mr. Miller,
    According to Mr. Steve McField, advisor to this government and one versed in Political Science and how it works; he has reminded everyone on Rooster this morning that the governor is the Head of the constitution of the Cayman Islands.
    Why would you Mr. Miller and Mr. Arden Mclean hand over the power of the constitution to the premier for him and his party to make  the final decision on  the petition for a people's initiated referendum for this one man one vote? 
    Any petition initiated by the people is first submitted to the governor!
    It seems to me that both you and the head of Opposition made a huge mistake in saying "Ooops!   This really is the governor's responsibility to make a decision in just how many signatures or what percentage of the registered voters or not, is to bedetermined inorder to pass legislation."
    The governor is the head of the constitution and it is his responsiblity to ensure smooth implementation regarding initiation and amendments.
    You seem to have forgotten that the premier does not hold such powers over the constitution, the governor does! .Your next step is to carefully review your actions on this serious and crucial initiative and quickly consult the governor on this and hold his feet to the fire on this serious matter, accepting responsibility for the constitution. Or else thousands of signatures will be rejected the same as the people's petition against the West Bay Road Closure.

    You were forewarned not to celebrate all too soon.

    Change your course and give the governor some work to perform his rightful duty to the people of these islands.

    The constitution  and referendum matters is always the responsibility of the governor and he makes those decisions, not the Premier or cabinet!

    Get back on course guys.

    • Anonymous says:

      Florence, until you have thoroughly read and understood the Constitution and have a working knowledge of the relevant facts I suggest you stop posting on these issues.

      You seem to have coined a new term: "the head of the Constitution".  I am not sure what that means.

      "Why would you Mr. Miller and Mr. Arden Mclean hand over the power of the constitution to the premier for him and his party to make  the final decision on  the petition for a people's initiated referendum for this one man one vote? Anypetition initiated by the people is first submitted to the governor!".

      As I understand it the petition is currently being audited and will be submitted when the organisers are satisfied that it has at least 3,800 signatures of registered voters. Nothing has been submitted at this point. Section 70(2)(a) of the Constitution says it must be presented to the Cabinet while Section 70(2)(b) says that Cabinet shall settle the wording of a referendum question. Section 44 of the Constitution says that Cabinet consists of the Premier, the other elected Ministers, the Deputy Governor and the Attorney General. Note that it did not include "the Governor". Of course the Governor may present it to Cabinet on behalf of the people.

      "This really is the governor's responsibility to make a decision in just how many signatures or what percentage of the registered voters or not, is to be determined inorder to pass legislation.".

      No, it's not. That is set by the Constitution for a people-initiated referendum. You keep failing to understand that the Premier has hijacked the process and turned it into a govt. initiated referendum. Cabinet (not the Governor) can then determine the majority required.   
       

       

      • EZ Anonymous says:

        Thats because the Premier is smarter than Ez and Arden!

        • Anon says:

          That is because McKeeva is willing to thwart the will of the people by playing political games. 

    • Anonymous says:

      (scratching head) huh????

  11. Anonymous says:

    VERY well said!!!!!!!!!!!!

  12. Knot S Smart says:

    Thank you Ezzard!

    We all need to come out and support both our country, you, and the PPM, on Wednesday, and at the meeting in Savannah!

    It is time that we 'clear out the trash – and clean up the Bush'

  13. Anonymous says:

    Absolutely. I will support this: as I have had enough of UDP disrespect. 

  14. vote B says:

    The choice is not just one man one vote.  Its start to save the country from itself or get ready to turn it over to those who can.  If this is to be done it needs to start soon or all the crying and nashing of teeth will be the Caymanians final song.

    • vote UK says:

      If They could do this it would aready be done.  Its just a matter of time now.  All the UK has to do is what they have been doing.  Wait.  And let Cayman see that they do not have the ability to self govern no matter how much money they spend.

  15. Anonymous says:

    Ezzard is no doubt correct that the majority of the electorate are now thinking that the so called "OMOV" is the panacea to fix Cayman's current political woes, by getting rid of a would be dictator. However, being the consummate pessimist, in all things political, who has no horse in the political race, so to speak, I would offer a word of caution. Ask yourself this:- Is the solution to our problems, which are no doubt caused by the promotion of a welfare mentality, where politicians are required to buy votes (i.e. " I like XXX becuz he teks care a me")', dividing the voters into much smaller more "intimate" voting communities? Or do you think that it may be possible that this might lend itself to compound the institutionalized corruption that exists in Cayman polictics today? It certainly will make it cheaper on the local politician to buy turkeys for his voters at Christmas!

    I would say, let us not make haste now, because we have an XXXX leading us, to rush into something that may produce many more like him (imagine that!). My primary concern with this OMOV is that we may well be confronted with having a system that allows even more small minded undesirables to embarrass us publicly by winning seats in parliament. After all, how many MLA's do we really need for such a small electorate? Are we aiming for quantity to try to obtain quality? Do we really believe that will produce the desired result? In other words, for every decent MLA we get, we may end up getting two or more bad ones, and we can ill afford that.

    And before we start to hear people like Austin saying "show me one other country that doesn't have a one man vote" let me ask you to consider this, which other country is ther like Cayman? Do we not pride ourselves and advertise ourselves as being like no other? Why would we want to exacerbate the real problem by taking an even more parochial approach and dividing this little country up even further than we are already? I for one am sick and tired of hearing the small minded political bantering and posturing, combined with politicians using circumstances, including other politicians woes to railroad people into signing up blindly for their agendas as a means to "the solution".

    I would urge you to carefully consider for yourself what is best for the country, not for the PPM or the UDP or Ezzard. The real problem is the lack of integrity and accountability in Cayman politics, not the election system, in my honest opinion. But, of course, my position might be different if I was running for office inthe next election. It would be, in my honest and humble view, a great travesty if the people of these three little islands further divide themselves into minuscule enclaves of political camps here and there. I would therefore urge all of you to pause and ask yourselves whether this is something we want or need to rush into, or is it something that needs to be carefully considered, along with possible alternatives.

    I would say there are other things we need to look at first, like setting standards for persons would can run for public office. THAT I think is obviously badly needed. In any event, if you think this is the only answer to our current political problems, I say, no need to worry, the way things are going, they will no doubt take care of themselves long before the next election! Or, let me put it this way, the way things are, we had better hope the situation is resolved long before election time.