Public should be concerned

| 07/06/2012

swarbrick.jpg(CNS): The auditor general has said that the public needs to be concerned about how government is spending and managing public money. Following the release of another report highlighting continued weaknesses in how government looks after the public purse, Alastair Swarbrick said government has a duty to have proper stewardship over public finances and the people need to pay attention to how their money is being managed. Ahead of several more reports expected over the next two months, the auditor general encouraged the public to pay close attention to how its money was being looked after.

“I think the public should be concerned about these issues. It is their money at the end of the day, however it is collected and whatever coercive revenues it is incurred through,” Swarbrick said Tuesday, as he published his latest report revealing continued risks of abuse of the government’s fuel card system GASBOY.

“They should be looking for the government to get as much value as possible from that money,” the auditor general said, referring to public coffers. “It should be directed at appropriate things, the right things and not used for inappropriate activities. It should be of very significant concern to the public if there is a risk of potential abuse of the system.”

Swarbrick said his reports were not about “picking on” or “harassing” government but it was his job to hold government to account for its use of public funds.

“We want to help government move forward and improve but at the end of the day my ultimate goal is to hold them to account to the Legislative Assembly and there unto the public. The government has a responsibility to have effective proper stewardship of those funds. It is public money, not their money, and they have the responsibility to use that money appropriately in line with good principles."

He said that it was the controls in place that would prevent the system from being abused. A common theme in most of Swarbrick’s and his predecessor’s reports is the failure of leadership in government to oversee and control systems relating to how money is spent.

The audit office is one of the few checks and balances on how government spends the half billion dollars it collects from the people each year but Swarbrick also pointed to the work of the internal audit unit.

This department also examines weaknesses and vulnerability to fraud, abuse or mismanagement in public spending, which he said should be utilised by public service management. He said the unit’s findings were a useful tool to identify potential weaknesses and point to ways things could be improved, but government is not making good use of that tool.

The internal audit unit does not regularly publish its audits, though it has released some under Freedom of information requests. Their work often only comes to light as a result of the auditor general taking up the unit's findings.

With serious weaknesses and potential fraud and abuse by government being revealed in the last three reports, the next report on how government deals with capital projects is also likely to reveal further failings.

Swarbrick said that in the next report due at the end of this month his office has used the school projects and the new government building as case studies to measure how well government deals with major public sector developments.

Following that the office will be releasing the first two of four reports examining government spending in general which will examine more closely what are believed to be widespread weaknesses and vulnerabilities across the entire public sector. 

The auditor is also hoping to publish an update on public sector financial reporting and details on where government is on the promised consolidated accounts for the 2010/11 financial year.

Category: Local News

Comments (167)

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  1. Anonymous says:

    We were conferred British Citizenship by the UK Overseas Territories Act 2002. We did not request it. Take that up with your UK politicians.

    I’m not sure what you mean by Indians and Jamaicans continuing to hold British passports.

    • Anonymous says:

      Dual passports of convenience?

      • Anonymous says:

        Many people of various nationalities hold dual nationalities. Why pick on the Jamaicans and Indians.

    • Anonymous says:

      You still can't vote though, no more than a UK resident can vote in Cayman. More's the pity.

    • Anonymous says:

      No, but like every other present/former colony or territory you sure make the most of it when it suits you. Left wing, guilt ridden MP's have given away our right to self determination, that's why they're not in government anymore.

    • Anonymous says:

      Actually, you were confirmed as British Overseas Citizens, not British Citizens and this was derived from the original British Dependant Territories Act that was renamed the British Overseas Territories Act in 2002. The two acts are identical in all but name.

      The term BOC is considered a useless and somewhat irrelevant citizenship as it does not automatically allow residence or rights to work in the UK. It most certainly doesn't allow a BOC to vote in UK elections unless the BOC is also a UK resident. It is true that there are a few minor perks to BOC, but they are largely piecemeal in content or substance.

      • Anonymous says:

        Are you really that clueless or are you pulling my leg? There was never any Act called the British Dependent Territories Act. British Dependent Territories were so named by the British Nationality Act 1981. It is correct that they were renamed British Overseas Territories by the Overseas Territories Act but far more importantly section 3 of the Act provides that “Any person who, immediately before the commencement of this section, is a British overseas territories citizen shall, on the commencement of this section, become a British citizen.”. Is that clear enough for you?

        • Anonymous says:

          Obviously the lines are a little blurred now. Whilst you are quite right that the BOC is derived from the BNA, (my mistake, sorry) the fact remains that despite all of this nonsense a BOC does not have the right to have immediate access to parliamentary elections in the UK. No more than any one else that is noted as 'being able to vote' until they have been a long term resident of the UK and registerd as such on the electoral role. It is ridiculous to infer without qualification that an individual, whatever his status, can just enter the UK and vote. That is most definately not the case and no where does it say he can, not even in the BOTA, BNA or the EU.

          Regardless of status, he must be a UK resident as defined by law, not by ridiculous sweeping statements that only confuse the issue.

          • Anonymous says:

            It seems that you have finally accepted that BOTCs were conferred British Citizenship in the OTA. You are making progress. There was never any suggestion that one did not have to be resident in the UK in order to vote. The only point at issue was the citizens of which countries,being resident in the UK, are entitled to vote in the UK.

        • Anonymous says:

          It seems anyone can be a British citizen, its being a British resident that counts in UK parlimentary elections. And that applies to all, including the Irish, Commonwealth or BOC's. All the rest is just legal garbage for lawyers to sound important with, it doesn't count for sqaut in reality.

          • Anonymous says:

            It sounds as if you are finally coming around albeit slowly. Obviously one must be resident in the UK AND have one of those citizenships in order to vote, the latter being the point at issue.

  2. Anonymous says:

    You mean a Northern Irish citizen, Ireland or Eire is not part of the UK. Perhaps UK citizens should reclaim their right to self determination and withdraw all non British resident passports and entitlements. Why should Caymanians, Jamaicans, Indians etc, etc……. continue to hold passports of a country they do not reside in or pay anything towards?

    • Anonymous says:

      No, I mean Irish citizens. There is no such thing as a Northern Irish citizen for the reason that, as you say, Northern Ireland is a part of the UK.

      • Anonymous says:

        'Every person born on the island of Ireland before 1 January, 2005 is entitled to be an Irish citizen.

        The citizenship of a person born on the island of Ireland on or after 1 January, 2005 depends on the citizenship of the person's parents at the time of the person's birth or the residency history of one of the parents prior to the birth'. (Eire DFA)

        So you see, it's not as simple as saying all Irish residents are Irish citizens, it then follows that an 'Irish' citizen cannot vote in the UK polls. To state that you have to be an Irish citizen to vote in the UK is both misleading and fundimentally wrong. It just means in theory you can apply for two passports if you come from the north.  

        Only those Northern Irish or Ulster Irish residents can vote due to their all encompassing UK citizenship. You can split hairs in regard to geographic location or rebublican politics but the fact remains that Northern Ireland/Ulster is a seperate country to Southern Ireland/Eire in regard to local governance and sovereignty, (see Wales and Scotland).

        That's why it's referred to as The United Kingdom of Great Britain AND Northern Ireland, NOT just Ireland. Like it or not, the UK is a federation or union of small countries with growing powers of self governance and determination. Just because country's share the same land mass, doesn't necessarily make you a citizen of the majority, (see US/Canada, Hispaniola, Europe, Asia etc……).

        You may also like to note that the rest of the UK do not vote in Ulsters government elections, no more than do the citizens of Eire. As a descendant of a Northern Irish family I am proud to be associated with a small and seperate country known as Northern Ireland/Ulster and call my forefathers Ulstermen. 

        • Anonymous says:

          You have so missed the point with all of this irrelevant verbiage. According to the Representation of the People Act citizens of the Republic of Ireland may vote in UK national elections if resident in the UK.

      • Anonymous says:

        No, you mean UK citizens from Northern Ireland, get it right.

      • Anonymous says:

        You'd still be wrong as Irish citizens as defined by the Irish DFA is someone born before 2005 on the island of Ireland. This has subsequently changed in qualification since 2005, however this means that an Irish citizen cannot vote in a UK election. They are only open to UK citizens of Northern Irish residency or put another way, people from Northern Ireland.

      • Anonymous says:

        There's actually no such thing as an Irish citizen that can vote in a UK election. They must be a UK citizen.

      • Anonymous says:

        Look up the word 'citizen', it doesn't just mean a passport holder. Theycan be a resident of a town, city, county or country so someone living in Northern Ireland can be referred to as a NI Citizen, okay?

      • Anonymous says:

        Doh!!! you've successfully cancelled out your own argument. As you have just said, Northern Irelands citizens are also UK citizens, they are definatelyNOT Irish citizens so therefore cannot vote in a UK election as you previously stated. Oh yes, Commonwealth country's can't vote either as they are not UK residents, nationals or citizens for the purposes of national elections. Come on, do keep up. 

        • Anonymous says:

          Read the law and stop being an idiot. Irish citizens are citizens of the Republic of Ireland, not Northern Irish Citizens of the UK. They can vote in the UK provided they are resident in the UK, as can Commonwealth Citizens.

          • Anonymous says:

            NOT unless they are a long term UK resident, being an entitled citizen counts for zero, I thought that is what my original post made clear. Being resident just isn't enough, you must be long term and registered on the electoral roll..

            Now whose an idiot, can't you read?

            • Anonymous says:

              They do not have to be long term residents at all. As a student in the UK and a Commonwealth citizen I actually voted in the UK national elections even though I had been there only 2 years at the time. There is nothing in the law requiring you to be a long term resident; it only requires that you are registered to vote.

          • Anonymous says:

            So, are you saying that Irish citizens can vote in the Cayman election?

        • Anonymous says:

          They can be Irish citizens if they choose to be.  

      • Anonymous says:

        Amazing the number of Brits on here that clearly do not understand the extent of the franchise in their own country. Please read up on the Representation of the People Act 1983 as amended which will show that Commonwealth Citizens an citizens of the Republic of Ireland can vote in UK elections if they are resident in the UK.

        In any event the contention that Irish citizens cannot vote in the UK regardless of length of residency reinforces my original point.

  3. Yourstruly says:

    Yes but our churches are rich with well-paid preahers while our colleges are 3rd world.

  4. Anonymous says:

    we have always had a culture of piratism in Cayman which is still alive and well today. This is no worse than the Caymanian employers that steal from their employees pension and health and pocket themoney contributed by their employees (and btw I am Caymanian)! And when they get caught by the pension office, they get the opportunity to pay it back on a lay-away plan!!  WTF?!!!  They should go straight to jail!  It is theft pure and simple.  But the same happens with social services and the vast number of persons that collect money from our treasury (millions per year) who dont ever intend to work and when Christmas comes they call social services to find out if they will collect a bonus!! This is real stuff folks.  Government overides the decision of the social workers and orders them to pay out to persons who should NOT be collecting money.  The social workers are incensed as they see where the real need is and some of the persons they are paying out to assist clearly have means. Remember Cayman airways and the vast number of persons who travelled for free many, many years after they were no longer employed with Cayman airways!  well guess what, somebody had to pay for that!! US! We should be concerned, but the Governments of the day dont have the political will to do the right thing. When the money wasflowing they didnt have to. Well now we are broke! Government doesnt have the money to throw into the hole. The silver lining is we as a country will be forced to address the problem.  It will be interesting to see those who have benefited from the free illegal gas.  Would not be surprised if they are persons in position of authority who should know better, but if it was free for the taking and they were all doing it – well why not them too!  

  5. Anonymous says:

    Maybe we should fire the UDP, Cayman? Has anyone thought of that? Oh and maybe we can revoke at least one of the premiers pensions while we're at it?

  6. Paying for the waste n tired of it! says:

    I am a single parent of a Caymanian child. I earn less then 40 k per year. But govt. Has raised my PR fees to $8,000?! All the while WASTING as many dollars as they can. This is sick! I can ‘t keep lights on, but they flagrantly waste money and live the high life off the backs of our children? Hope they all rot in hell.

    • Anonymous says:

      PR fees are illegal as they are discrimination of settled residents on the basis of national origin.  In your case it is also a breach of your right to a family life.

      Write to the FS, saying they are illegal and ask for them to be waived.

      When he breaks the law and says "No", pay the fees but state you are doing so under compulsion and objection.

      Find a civilsed attorney to take your case.  There are recent cases which stress that the Courts must apply the applicable rights law when exercising powers.

      Your mistreatment is a disgrace in a modern nation that purports to comply with human rights.  Sadly the culture of fear and the arbitrary behaviour of boards are designed to prevent people asserting their rights

      • Anonymous says:

        Has nothing to do with national origin. It is because you don't hold Caymanian status. It is perfectly lawful to discriminate on the basis of citizenship.

  7. Anonymous says:

    whats the point of being concerned when the most educated hardworking members of society cannot even vote?

    • Anonymous says:

      The most educated hardworking members of society can vote.

      • Anonymous says:

        whatever…. keep your head in the sand….

      • Anonymous says:

        Expanding the franchise would reduce the power of the numptie block vote.
        It would also reduce the scope for corruption.

      • Anonymous says:

        OOps, I think you missed the point. Could the commentator be referring to expats, surely must be?

    • Anonymous. says:

      Self-righteous, jealous and probably misguided.

      As in every country around the world citizens get to exercise their democratic right in their country; and rightfully so. It could be successfully argued that voting rights conferred onto the transient populations of any country would be an infringement on the rights of its citizens to determine their own path.

      • Ethelred says:

        Nah, many nations let non-citizens vote, and a bar on the right to vote and stand in elections for those who have been resident for over 10 years is almost certainly a breach of the ECHR.

        • Anonymous says:

          The democratic standard across the world is that citizens have the right to vote. If particular countries wish to give that right to non-citizens that is a matter for them but it does not suddenly create a universal human right so that non-citizens have the right to vote in every other country.

          Unless you are you are a British Citizen, Commonwealth Citizen or Irish Citizen you will not have the right to vote in the UK whether you have been resident there for 10 years or not.

          There is no case coming out of the ECHR to support your position.    

          • Anonymous says:

            Well, that's half the world then, so much for self determination.

          • Anonymous says:

            Unless you are you are a British Citizen, Commonwealth Citizen or Irish Citizen

            There are around 2.1 bilion Commonwealth citizens in the world, so that is a lot of people entitled to vote in the UK.  That is like opening up the vote in Cayman to close to 1 miilion people if they were residents

          • Anonymous says:

            Irish citizens cannot vote in the UK, only UK citizens can participate in UK elections. Northern Irelands citizens are the only citizens from the island of Ireland entitled to vote under UK citizenship rules.

            • Anonymous says:

              Unless they are full residents and registered as such within the rules. Therefore making them UK residents. Easy.

          • Anonymous says:

            Commonwealth citizens do not have the right to vote in any UK elections unless they become UK residents and fulfill the requirements thereof. And the Irish, are you serious? ONLY UK CITIZENS CAN VOTE IN THE UK !!!! How difficult is that tounderstand?

            • Anonymous says:

              Is there no end to the ignorance on this issue? You do not even realize that you have contradicted yourself . First you correctly say that Commonwealth citizens can vote in the UK if resident and then promptly deny that by saying only UK citizens can vote in the UK. There is absolutely no doubt about Irish Citizens being able to vote if resident in the UK. Read the law and stop making an ass of yourself.

              • Anonymous says:

                Contradict how? It is very clear and unambiguous and as a former immigration officer I can be sure of this.

                Irish citizens, as defined by the Irish Department of Foreign Affairs, cannot vote in UK elections as they are effectively a foreign national, despite being an EU subject. Citizens of Northern Ireland, (of which the Eire Govt like to think of as part of their country) can vote as they are UK citizens/residents. As for the Commonwealth stupid, they have limited rights to enter the UK and perhaps apply for full UK residency, but they cannot vote unless they do so. Exactly the same would apply to any Irish national if they became a full resident of the UK.

                So you understand in simple terms, YOU MUST HOLD FULL UK CITIZENSHIP TO VOTE IN UK ELECTIONS. SOUTHERN IRELAND IRELAND IS NOT PART OF THE UK AND CITIZENS OR EIRE DO NOT HOLD UK PASSPORTS!!!!  Stop spouting nationalist crap and acknowledge that the north exists as a seperate country within the UK not Eire.

                • Anonymous says:

                  Long term UK residency first, Irish or Commonwealth citizenship second.

                • Anonymous says:

                  Being an immigration officer does not make you an authority on who is entitled to vote in a country. I am going to make this short in the hope that it will make it easier to grasp. Provided one is resident in the UK one can vote in UK national elections if one is a Commonwealth citizen or Citizen of the Republic of Ireland. One does NOT have to be a UK citizen to vote in UK national elections. If you still cannot understand this then I will leave you to wallow in your own ignorance.

                  • Anonymous says:

                    You superior wally's are so easy to get a rise out of. Lighten up, have a beer.

                    Read back oh great oricale, you'll see that it has been written by me and others that we get the citizen thing. You don't get the resident thing or that they must be a registered UK RESIDENT to vote, regardless of origin. All the best, Santa Claus, (registered UK resident, c/o Harrods, London) HA !! 

                    • Anonymous says:

                      You’ve got to brush up on the reading comprehension skills along with the spelling. You are sorely lacking in both.

                • Anonymous says:

                  Now you have gone off on a complete that has nothing to do with the original issue.

                  • Anonymous says:

                    You appear to think I'm the same person, anonymous is not a name you know.

                    • Anonymous says:

                      You mean there is more than one of you typing in block capitals with multiple exclamation marks and making erroneous points?

                • Anonymous says:

                  OOps, sorry, I meant immigration offender. Still, makes you feel good anyway.

              • Anonymous says:

                From the UK Electoral Commission:

                 

                Who can register to vote?

                You can register to vote if you are:

                • 16 years old or over and a British citizen or an Irish, qualifying Commonwealth or European Union citizen who is resident in the UK

                If you are 16 or 17, you can only register if you will be 18 within the lifetime of the electoral register. You cannot vote until you are 18.

                Below is a full list of Commonwealth and European Union countries. If you are a citizen of one of these countries, and resident in the UK, you are eligible to register to vote in UK elections. To qualify, Commonwealth citizens must be resident in the UK and either have leave to remain in the UK or not require such leave. The definition of a 'Commonwealth citizen' includes citizens of British Crown Dependencies and British Overseas Territories.

                Citizens of the European Union (who are not Commonwealth citizens or Citizens of the Republic of Ireland) can vote in European and local elections in the UK, but are not able to vote in UK Parliamentary general elections or referendums.

                Now how difficult is that for you to understand? You must be a registered UK resident to vote in the UK, regardless of if you are an Irish or Commonwealth citizen. So you see, it is not a free for all as originally suggested, Irish nationals still have to become UK residents.

                • Anonymous says:

                  You are completely correct except that it was never suggested by me that one did not have to be resident in the UK in order to vote in UK elections. The context of all of this whether long time residents of a country who are not citizens should have the right to vote. If you thought otherwise you missed the whole thread and read the comments out of context.

              • Anonymous says:

                IF RESIDENT, now you're getting it. That makes them UK residents as explained above. Citizens, citizenship and residents are all different animals. Anyone can be a citizen, only citizenship confers the legal definition and residents must be registered and living in the country on a long term basis.

                You guys have been on this rock too long where these lines are deliberately blurred and used in different contexts. Read a dictionary and stop trying to be so superior.

                • Anonymous says:

                  I have never said or suggested anything different. The context of my original comments was whethe non-citizens who are resident in a country for at least 10 years have a right to vote in that country’s national elections. My answer was regardless of length of residence you would not be entitled to vote unless you were a Brutish Citizen, Commonwealth citizen or Irish Citizen you will not be allowed to vote in UK national elections. How that could be twisted to mean that Irish citizens and Commonwealth citizens who are not resident in the UK can vote in UK elections is beyond me. Well, at least you finally got the point.

      • Fedup says:

        Don't forget the right of free gas.  If non citizens get free gas it defeats the purpose.

    • Anonowhat says:

      You should be concerned  because  they have spent all their own money and now they want more of yours.  but only what they are intitled to.

    • Anonowhat says:

      Remember first that citizens of Cayman have to vote for a Caymanian politician only.  Would you want that?

  8. Anonymous says:

    "…the money it collects from the people"?  What people is that?  Business owners?  The vast majority of people pay a pittance in the form of duty (10% of your grocery and electric bills).

  9. Anonymous says:

    Many of us "are" concerned!

    However, with no arrests/convictions of those responsible….more of the same will continue!

    Seems only a TCI style temp takeover is the last resort.

    Not what i would have preferred but unless "some" Powers that be actually arrest and prosecute….or at least fire those responsible for such irresponsibilty….more will continue.

  10. Anonymous says:

    How much money did the gowerment get from the "old bank accounts'  theft?

    • Anonymous says:

      Now that I am able to pick myself up off the floor from LMAO I want to say "it took this long for them to figure this out???" and we have a person in charge that has three pending investigations that has spent our hard earned money, I think they better check all the little social trips that have been taken

    • Anonymous says:

      I wonder what Pablo will say when he gets out of jail and finds its all gone.

  11. Anonymous says:

    I freakin love this place!  They just give free money to the locals without oversight or control. On one level I think that's great. Why not! 

    I just wish they'd invest a little bit more in the police, maybe some of that $10m Bush "allocated" and gave to his "church", so that we could actually be safe here.  And I resent my CUC bill a little more now I know the fuel duty is being used to subsidise theft.

    • Anonymous says:

      one second there, I'm a local, and I didn't get no "free" money. i guess I must be on the blacklist.

  12. Anonymous says:

    WE ARE CONCERNED!!!

  13. Anonymous says:

    We are concerned…buy what can we do in a Dictatorship run by a Tyrant?

    • Anonymous says:

      What can you do?

       

      Get involved in the next election and make sure he is voted out.

      • Anonymous says:

        Just to make way for the next lot. Start with the civil service first, that's where most of the fraud and wastage is.

    • Anonymous says:

      Try stand up and be counted.  Protest.

      • Anonymous says:

        Why doesn't a resourceful Caymanian put together an online petition and garner as many Caymanian names as possible. This petition should then be posted to both the UK Prime Minister and the FCO, with further copies going to HE The Governor and finally the CoP.

        Better still, I wonder if its possible for a formal 10 Downing Street online petition to be generated from overseas. This is a very effective means of expressing views not normally projected into the public domain in the UK. If a large enough proportion of Caymanians could be persuaded to sign up, the UK Government would be forced to listen.

        This could also be opened up to expat workers, residents, property owners and businesses who are also sick to the stomach of what is going on in this country. The great thing about an online petition is that names are not shown publicly, so enabling people who are frightened about reprisal to register their names in freedom and safety.

        Once the petition is up and running, tell everyone, use all forms of social media and advertising and reassure those who are nervous. There is no excuse that would stop every single person standing on this rock to know that a petition exists and its safe to join. 

        MAN UP CAYMAN, If you REALLY want to rid yourselves of these self serving, corrupt and hypocritical public servants, then get PROACTIVE not REACTIVE and do something that will count in the halls of power.

    • Chris Johnson says:

      You hit the nail on the head about a dictator! Since CNS started their website they have been inundated by concerns of the public about accountability and I for one have sent in my share. Mr Bush, the Minister of All Tings must carry the can. His track record of reckless spending is unparalleled in the history of the Cayman Islands and hardly a day goes by without another hair brained idea that costs the tax payers money. With eleven months to go we can expect another eleven such ideas.
      Many of us supported the previous Auditor General whose audits are now being endorsed by the current AG. The comes as no surprise to those interested in the finances of our islands. If I were look into the crystal ball I would say that his future reports will be pretty depressing.
      On the bright side of life I recommend readers look at the movie ‘Being There’ where Peter Sellers is remarkably similar to Mr Bush, in his role as a gardener and future politician. No it is not as scary as you would imagine.

  14. Activist V says:

    With sucessive corrupt political regimes that have consistently been put into place and run by political cronies, henchmen, lackeys, and "chuch" members and the lodge old boys network LOBN. If UK government who governs Cayman can't fix or stop it How in hell are we going to do something about it being concern and having sympathy is nice. However Sympathy without relief don't mean a thing. Do something about it UK  Poor old Cayman corruption stifling us to death.

    • Anonymous says:

      @ Activist V….all so true.

       

      We are concerned and we need to SERIOUSLY acknowledge the majority of CIG civil servants are not the native Caymanians, many many are status Caymanians. But they all have to be put in same group and the problem is many status holders really believe they can work here and go back 'home'.

      However, as civil servants, the pension and other benefits are currently being paid and will be paid by work permit holders (*fingers crossed right), the natives who remain and the UK government, IF we continue to be a contingent liability to them, in that sense.

      SO to all those civil servants who continue to think they can continue to sit back, accept the abuses of processes & procedures, accept the hiring of hundreds of managers who could easily be decent paid adminsitrators vs being put on a managerial scale because they obtained a degree (many simply done online), delegating responsibility but not improving efficiency of current staff, hiring of friends & family on contract when those jobs could be filled by graduates etc etc……………..we will eventually have to tax individuals, implement property tax and what then??

      This continued lack of planning for all citizens/residents here NOW is going to create an even bigger mess!!! Expat workers will be able to leave and not have to worry about taxes AND importantly,not have to worry about maintaining this welfare state we are building (their idea of Nation Building or what??) and Caymanians and English (even if not here as taxpayers in the UK) will be left with the bill. Caymanians who are concerned need to stop bashing the UK who has a right to monitor the civil service and start cleaning up this mess! Caymanians, no matter how you 'get along' with the British that live here, put aside personal differences and think long term and don't jump on the bandwagon that they are our problem. THINK!!! smh

       

       

  15. Anonymous says:

    I'm very concerned, very concerned, because nobody canna audit

  16. Anonymous says:

    Who cares? They broke!  I broke!  We all in the same boat!

    • Anonymous says:

      Difference is we the people are broke because we have no choice.  The government is broke because they aint got no sense when it comes to spending money that belongs to you and me.

    • Anonymous says:

      You kidding yourself if you believe that certain politicians aren't getting very rich as you and our government get poorer and poorer.

    • Anonymous says:

      But a few of them are up on the top deck partying like crazy, and the rest of us are down in the bilges pumping like hell to keep the ship afloat.

  17. Anonymous says:

    The voting public thinks that the government is SUPPOSED to collect money (from foreigners as much as possible) and then spread it around to as many Caymanians as possible by whatever means are available. This is the PURPOSE of government in Cayman. Since the only significant "tax" on Caymanians is duty, and you don't see that number when you pay for something, the government revenues are viewed as "other peoples money" to be distributed in one way or another among the voting populace. Caymanians basically seethe government coffers as a big slush fund (annual government revenue is equal to  $20,000 per Caymanian). This works as long as you don't go too far and kill the goose that lays the eggs. Considering the state of the world economy, the goose is doing ok, but it has been easy to see over the past four years that even the slightest reduction to the slush fund causes great consternation among the voting public. This concern is not about waste or theft, it's about not getting enough of what if being handed around. The other concern is that some expats might get too much (because Caymanians regard the economy as a zero-sum game.) As long as direct taxation is avoided, this situation is not going to change because it is in the overall best interest of the voting public—expat opinion nothwithstanding. It is only surprising that less than100% of the voting public is employed by government.

    • JTB says:

      Great post

    • Anonymous says:

      Exactly.

    • Anonymous says:

      You should have put "significant" in inverted commas, not "tax".

       

      Most people pay about CI$100-200 per month in duty between groceries, gas and electricity (and it's flat; you can only buy so many groceries, drive so many miles and use so much electricity).  A far cry from the $20,000 a year spent per Caymanian.

       

      To paraphrase Erskine Bowles, "the Cayman Islands Government is a milk cow with 30,000 teats".

    • Truth says:

      You have just explained Caymans main problem and why nothing has been done to change it perfectly.  Imagine if the flow was diverted back to infrastructure and education for the use of all Caymanians. What would Cayman be like in 10 years if only $10,000 was spent on the future of every Caymanian per year instead of just Civil servants,friends and family (O yea and certain church). Too bad the only ones that can make this change are the very ones who have the most to lose by it.

    • Crossdressed says:

      I do not expect to live herefor free 11:05  This is not my country to abuse its people, so why should you think you should come here and not pay too.   Get used to it nothing is for free.

    • Anonymous says:

      Caymanians pay more tax than expats. The system needs to be revamped so expats, who have the highest incomes (don’t let the way it is presented in the census fool you ) pay their fair share.

      The object of this govt is not to spread it around to as many Caymanians as possible but to their cronies be they expat or Caymanian.

      • JTB says:

        "Caymanians pay more tax than expats"

         

        Care to explain that statement?

        • Anonymous says:

          That's the point, they can't. They don't understand that without expats, residents, property owners and tourists paying through the nose for everything they purchase, the revenues would be reliant on…….. Ooops, nothing. And it's all because they don't want to contribute to their own exchequer and support their own society. Why do they think they are in the mess they're in?

           

          But of course, its everyone elses fault, obviously.

      • Anonymous says:

        Could you please explain?  How do Caymanians pay more tax than expats?

      • Anonymous says:

        Prove it.

         

        • Anonymous says:

          Your government doesn't keep audited records, remember? The same as most 3rd world banana republics. Anyway, its not for me to prove, you're in the crap, prove I'm wrong.

      • Anonymous says:

        You must work for CIG right?  You have that certain mentality they love.

      • Anonymous says:

        You just wrote an absolute pile of excrement.

        • Anonymous says:

          Really, explain if you can, without resorting to the same old BS of the hard done by Caymanian.The truth is you DO get subsidies and discounts, along with tax relief on property purchase, what part of that is excrement, or don't you know what goes on in your country?

        • Anonymous says:

          HOW WOULD YOU PAY FOR YOUR EXTRAVAGANT SPENDING WITHOUT OVERSEAS PROPERTY PURCHASE AND DUTY PAYMENTS? The truth is you can't, that's why you're broke and floundering in a sea of deficit.

      • Anonymous says:

        You poor deluded fool. How on earth did you work that one out? As an expat and former property owner on Grand Cayman, I have paid more tax on this 'tax free' island than I have ever paid in the UK, (and continue to do so). You seem to conveniently forget the subsidies that you obtain and the tax breaks given at our expense.

        Until you pay your own fair share of income related taxes, property, business and import duty's you will never fully understand how to look after your revenues. The previous commentator is correct, this is a public slush fund that holds no accountability because the vast majority of it isn't coming directly out of your pockets.

        Its easy come, easy go and it has to stop.

        • Anonymous says:

          Then you are a complete fool to have left the UK to pay more tax in Cayman. 

          I don't obtain any subsidies. 

          • Anonymous says:

            Okay, so no property tax (stamp duty), subsidised Cayman Airways flights, mortgage assistance, lower interest rates, eco power subsidies, free healthcare, education etc, etc……The list goes on, but still doesn't include the massive burden of a huge civil service that employs 50 to 75% of the population. Then you can add pensions, free fuel and endemic corruption.   

            Not a bad deal when your only tax liability is 10% on purchases. A fool for being subjected to discrimination and bigotry, maybe, but at least I can walk away. What do you think will happen when the free lunch is over and you have to pay your own way in the world?

            Who's the fool now?

      • Anonymous says:

        Exactly right. Proportionately much more of Caymanians' incomes go towards tax than the incomes of expats.

  18. Knot S Smart says:

    Yea..

    I am vexed as hell at how they have increased our fees and import duties, and have gone on a spend-a-thon, while our economy is at an all time low, and businesses are dropping like flies…

    Expose them Mr. Swarbrick!

    Expose the hell out of all the 'wasters' , and the wasting of our limited assets…

    • Paying for the waste n tired of it! says:

      Get ready for a lot more business closures. Dart is seriously cutting it’s loses in GT. Lots of stores will be going bye-bye, and lots more locals out of work. Guess govt. will pay for the hundreds of displaced workers by increasing fees, and running even more businesses out of business.

      God forbid they cut costs!

      GT businesses cannot absorb another year of massive losses.

      When Mac canned GLF he signed the death sentence for down town.

      Hope that dim sum was worth it.

  19. MacWad says:

    My hands are clean and my heart is pure…

  20. CROSSDRESSER says:

    Mr Alastiar  Swarbrick, why dont  you allow the general public the knowledge, that this has been going on for more than 40 years.   I  have lived here for more than 40 years, and what you are telling the public has been going on for years.   If a proper investigation is done you will be able to tell the public that every government had their share of using or as you may call it,  abusing public funds. 

    But the big question is this, who is going to do something about it.  You might as well say you can stop me from bringing in my ECU and American dollars  to Cayman.   Money Laundering will never stop, neither will the sale of drugs and liquor.

    Further more Cayman Governments and note: I say GOVERNMENTS WITH AN  "S"  meaning all of them so to speak.   What abusing of funds they do is small, and note I have said "SMALL" considering what is done in other countries.   Their abuse of Govt. funds are enormous.

    What I have observed with the Government representatives of the Legslative Department on the Islands, is that they try to do things to assist their people  to live comfortable.   I am speaking of both the PPM and the UDP Governments, they both have tried in the past to assit the Cayman people to live a better life.  I see this as a good thing, because if the little man on the street does not have a job, does not have a home for his kids, then he will not welcome me as a foreigner here.   In fact why whould he feel happy, and on the other hand why should we as foreigners feel threatened, by pushing the Island people in a corner?

    The Auditors calls it abuse of funds.  "I dont"  I call it "BEING SELFISH TOWARDS THE PEOPLE OF CAYMAN BECAUSE OF THEIR FREEDOM"   My advice to the Governments of Cayman, and note I have said Governments, meaning PPM and UDP.  "BE  VERY CAREFUL"  Because everyone who is smiling with you is not your friend.   Think carefully that you are not being  "SET UP" to fail.    Something for those of you who love your country to think about.

    • Knot S Smart says:

      Dear CrossDresser.

      Please stop wagging your tail…

      That wont get you anywhere!

    • Loopy Lou says:

      You know the infinite number of monkeys trying to type the work of Shakespeare?  This was something one of them produced on the way . . .

    • Anonymous says:

      Actually comparing the size of the misused fund by the government to Cayman's population size and it is absolotely massive when compared to other countries.

      look at only the private paving and gasboy, that's a combined total of $1million a year to a population of 55,000, just those 2 instances (which less face it are the tip of the iceberg) wouldamount to $1.2 billion in a country the size of Britain. If you then start adding the Cohen loans debacle, the port compansation, lack of stamp duty collected and the amounts are astronomical when scaled up with the larger countries.

       

    • Anonymous says:

      I think Mr Swarbrick can only speak for the accounts he audits during his employment here as our Auditor General.  I don't think he's in a position to speak about what happened previously, and I certainly wouldn't want him wasting any more public money investigating accounts (or, rather lack of accounts) going back 40 years.  Suffice to say only idiots would not believe that this abuse has been going on for decades.  Most of us know it, but the disappointing fact is, nobody (with the exception of our very fine auditor general and his immediate predecessor) seems to be bothered to do anything about it and demand accountability from our politicians.  Until that day, the abuse will continue.  As Mr Swarbrick says, its our money and we should damn well demand to know how it is being spent, and be satisfied that it is being spent wisely.

      • Ching Ching says:

        Most people that work for government that are breaking the law do not know what you are talking obout, it’s part of the job and has been for years, it’s a perk of the job past on from generation to generation.

        • Anonymous says:

          I realise this, and that's why we're in a hole now, and they are only digging us even deeper.

    • Cheese Face says:

      Have you been drinking Mr / Mrs Crossdresser?

      • CROSSDRESSER says:

        Cheeseface I cannot believe that you have forgotten so quickly, Of course we were drinking.

    • SKEPTICAL says:

      Horseshit

    • Truth says:

      Pure unadulterated ( and unauditable) Bushit.

  21. Kadafe says:

    Thanks Mr. AG

    Thank you for your concern and effort however we have been concerned over their elaborate spending
    For many years now! What we need is to able to do something about it!

    • Anonymous says:

      Our Auditor General is doing a damn good job.  If the people want the abuse to stop, they must speak up and be heard; demand accountability from their politicians and stop being so complacent about everything.

  22. Anonymous says:

    Well I hope for Swarbrick that he has already sent out his C.V.

    It is only a matter of time before Mac sends him packing.

    How dare he demand accountability of funds.

    What does the auditor think Cayman is "a Democracy"

    • Anonymous says:

      If the Premier is dumb enough to get rid of a AG (who works for the Gov I think) all hell will break lose and the UK will (and should) be in here in hours.

      • Huh? says:

        tell that to Dan!  Governor packed his bags for him.

        • Anonymous says:

          Dan had served out his time and the current Auditor General has not. He aint going anywhere anytime soon. Trust me Mac will be gone long before him !

          • Anonymous says:

            I really hope you are right, so I can continue to have faith that there really is a God!

        • Anonymous says:

          No. That is not true. There were other internal management issues with Duguay. Why would  the Governor replace him with an equally aggressive Auditor General if your silly uninformed conspiracy theory were correct? This one is causing just as much irritation with our corrupt politicians as Duguay.

  23. Anonymous says:

    We need a riot in this place!   Preferbly when the harbour is at its capacity with cruise ships. -_-

    • Anonymous says:

      The only riot you'll see on this island is when KFC runs out of chicken.

    • Anonymous says:

      You'd have to get out of bed first, then not report sick and get off your cell phone. Nah, no chance of that happening.

    • Anonymous says:

      Oh yes please, then the UK will have all the excuse it needs to take over government and get to the bottom of this corrupt society for once and for all. 

    • Anonymous says:

      How STUPID can you be????

       

      You clearly dont have the best interests of Cayman at heart.

    • hmmm says:

      Is thatthe Iranian Ambassador speaking

  24. Anonymous says:

    Me for one is more concerned as to how I am going to pay my utilities this month.. 

    • Gwana Wukh says:

      Not doing anything that requires gramatical skills, I for one can tell you that!!!

    • Truth Hurts says:

      There is a direct relationship between the sky-high cost of your CUC bill and government waste and mismanagement of our funds. A large portion of the CUC bill is related to government imposed duties which Government take to pay for this fiasco. You are paying towards this waste and theft through the duties imposed on CUC, which they pass on to you, their customer.

    • Anonymous says:

      Well maybe your utilities would not be so high if the tax on fuel was not over the top to cover the wasted government spending on items like Gasboy etc… think about it!!!

    • Anonymous says:

      As you are trying to think how you are going to pay your CUC bill, remember that if you were premier you could just order that your CUC bill is paid for by the rest of us. You should also remember that if you were premier you could order that you should have a maid paid for by the rest of us and anything else your little heart desired.

      Politicians will never care what pain we feel when they have the no integrity and the power to pass the pain to someone else.

  25. Anonymous says:

    Obviously the pilferage far exceeds the political capital that could be won by identifying and arresting the extensive abuse.  How else can it be explained that someone could openly misapproprpiate $10mln of public funds and gift this to his local church without anyone batting an eye?  Any government or opposition that would stand silent for that kind of abuse can hardly justify getting upset at a little missing gas money.  This is why the UK is investigating, and why we should hope to be cleansed of the lot of them.   

     

    • Beachboi says:

      The Dart Group gave $20 million to the country and XXXXX Mac then gave away the funds as he wanted. Inwhat reality is this legal not to mention the fact that he gave most of it to his own church? Duh??? That money that Weslayan got could have gone a long way in helping with our "third world" hospital as well as the schools and maybe the labour dept. and other projects that could truly have been seen as "nation building. Can someone point out in the Constitution where it says that the Premier may do as he pleases with the finances and laws of the country with no oversight? XXXXX I recall reading recently that the AG needs to refer cases to the Anti-Corruption Commission. What, do they sit around and play internet solitaire until they "get a bone"?

      XXXX I for one cant wait for the UK to come in with the "rosemary brooms" and sweep the filth out of the sanctity of our Legislative Assembly.

  26. Anonymous says:

    This is really a waste of time. Gov't might as well close down the audit departments. Firstly, there are no financial audits to be undertaken as there are NO accounts to audit. Secondly, when they do other audits; the recommendations are not implemented.

    I was deeply disappointed by the position taken by the new Deputy Governor. Somebody should have been fired. It is clear that Franz has spent too much time in the civil service and represents more of the same. When politicians behave like this at least we the public have an opportunity to fire them. Who is to fire the civil servants?

    At this point I dont know if it is a matter of being impotent or incompetent. Either way, it is unacceptable. God help us all

  27. Anonymous says:

    It's clear we're being primed for UK intervention.  Soon come.

    • Anonymous says:

      Can't come soon enough

    • Westminister says:

      Apparently, they are building a case out of Cayman. Can't wait to seize power.

      • Loopy Lou says:

        By your inability to spell Westminster correctly, my guess is that your "sources" are probably of dubious provenance.

  28. Anonymous says:

    Can someone do a report on all of the laws they break and the laws they don't enforce for those with deep pockets?  And expose all of the cover-ups…not just the spending. 

  29. Anonymous says:

    The Auditor-General's reports on the schools and the new government building will be terribly critical of its stewardship over public funds as both these developments have been a grievous waste of money (the latter because it is only half full because no one wants to tell Authorities they MUST move in). Swarbrick writes "it is public money not their money"; that is the big problem with all recent governments in Cayman. They spend like drunken sailors who have won the lottery and have no concept of being careful and ethical in the way the funds are spent. Hence, Gasboy, Cayman Brac paving etc

  30. Anonymous says:

    Here we go again.