Alden calls for explanation

| 19/12/2012

alden_0.jpg(CNS): The opposition leader has said that the drama surrounding the fall of government yesterday could and should have been avoided if the premier had not abdicated his responsibility to resign. Alden McLaughlin said that McKeeva Bush and the three UDP members still supporting him needed to explain to the public why he was trying to cling to office and why they were backing him, given the circumstances surrounding the embattled premier, who remains on police bail after his arrest last week. Wrapping up the debate on his successful no confidence motion in the LA Tuesday, which resulted in the collapse of the UDP government, McLaughlin said Bush had forced legislators to go through the painful process. (Photo Dennie Warren Jr)

Despite the drama of Bush leading three other UDP members across the floor to the opposition benches, signalling a major split in the UDP government and party, the only audible comments made by Bush during the emergency meeting of the Legislative Assembly yesterday was his call for a division on the vote.  He made no contribution to the debate nor did his three UDP supporters, Mike Adam, Capt Eugene Ebanks and even Ellio Solomon, who also remained silent until after the proceedings.

By Wednesday lunchtime the premier had still made no further official statements following the short release he made after his arrest last week, in which he had remained defiant about continuing in office and his innocence. He has also remained publicly silent about his colleagues' move to oust him from office.

Since being released on police bail after his arrest last Tuesday, Bush has, however, denied the allegations of theft and corruption offences for which he was arrested and has pointed the finger at the UK, which he accuses of pursuing a witch hunt against him, fuelled by his political enemies. Bush categorically refutes the allegations under which he was arrested and says he has done nothing wrong.

Nevertheless, he remains the subject of several live police investigations. He is accused of theft and offences under the anti-corruption law in connection with the misuse of a government credit card and the importation of a consignment of explosives without the correct permits.

Refusing to resign despite the pressure from the opposition, the community and then finally the majority of the caucus, Bush forced his former political colleagues to remove him from office by joining forces with the opposition and supporting McLaughlin’s motion — ultimately removing themselves as well.

The opposition leader said that the government could have transitioned in the face of the crisis without any drama or the public spectacle incurred by the lack of confidence motion. He said it was Bush’s insistence on clinging to office, not the investigations he was under, that was doing the most damage to the country. He describe it as an “abdication of responsibility on the part of the premier” and those who were support him in continuing in office for failing to provide an explanation as to why legislators were forced to go through what he called a painful process.

“Given the events of last Tuesday, everyone knows the seriousness of the matters, and the premier, who has served almost seven terms, understands the full weight of the responsibility that comes with leadership, even in difficult times, and the country is owed an explanation by him,” McLaughlin said.

He said those who were standing with him, saying he ought not to step down, also owed a duty of responsibility, given their choice to walk across the floor, to explain to the people not only the significance of that move but why they did it.

As the country waited Wednesday morning to find out whether it would face early elections or whether the UDP 5 would attempt to limp on until the scheduled dissolution of parliament in March, both sides of the divided UDP remained relatively quiet. Meanwhile, it is understood that the party’s wider membership was meeting about the situation the political group now finds itself in, divided down the middle.

Category: Politics

Comments (17)

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  1. Anonymous says:

    Come on, someone start printing the 'Alden for Premier in 2013' bumper stickers.

  2. Anonymous says:

    What a joke, a call for explination? heard it all now.

    Leader of the Opposition, save us.

  3. Anonymou says:

    I thought Alden's "give us an explanation" comment was uncalled for. He had finally won and in victory needed to not slap them when they were already beaten.

    The real heros were the UPD who voted their conscience which enabled this to succeed, they showed statesmanship.

    I respected the members of the LA for not speakingand allowing the vote to speak for them, It was very humbling and powerful.

  4. Anonymous says:

    mac will give a statement explaining his idiocy as soon as Ryan finishes it and emails it to him

    • Anonymous says:

      This is one of the funniest, most penetrating comments I have read on CNS.

  5. Anonymous says:

    Alden,

    Thank you.  It's a shame that it had to come to this.  You can't expect answers from them because they are drunk on McKeeva's kool aid.

    I'm glad that instead of calling elections that the Governor decided to just have you all work together. You all can do it. 

  6. The lone haranguer rides again! says:

    Victory! Ok Alden tell us now haw you intend to run the country.

  7. Truth says:

    Anyone with  6th grade and above education has already figured out why a long time ago.  They also know better than to ask Bush anything they want a straight answer to.  Better to ask how an imoral idiot like himself got into the position in the first place.  And yes, most of us know the answer to that question too. Please move on and help the country to evolve from a third world society.  The next Government has a lot of changes to work out if they are going to prove themselves worthy.

  8. The Spin Cycle says:

    Although it is alarming to witness the activities in the Legislature, the Opposition are quite presumptuous in taking the high road. Because, for quite some time they have remained inactive. Ie. silent. They shirked their responsibilities in bringing an out of control individual and Premier to task in not asking pertinent questions when in fact that was their obligation to the public. By this I am not in any way condoning his actions. But it seems to me the entire Legislature has let the country down. Each individual, regardless of party affiliation, allowed this situation to take place. And if it had not been for their seeming examining first what was best for them, instead of the country's, Cayman would not find itself floundering!  Without now a working nor effective government. Perhaps now it is time to examine what sort of people should be given these positions and more importantly who they intend to represent. Examining both the PPM and UDP, and their actions, it's obvious Party politics, "following the leader" and "sticking together" have taken precedence over the best interests of all. That is the real embarrassment.

    • Anonymous says:

      The only explanation for you thinking that the opposition has been silent on this matter is that you are seriously hard of hearing. 

    • Anonymous says:

      More C4C rubbish. The Opposition have persistently questioned the govt's activities. They filed two previous No Confidence Motions in the Government for the purpose of being able to debate and put on the record the many wrongs of the govt. A lot of people did not understand the importance of this since the Opposition obviously did not have the numbers to remove him. They did all that was within their constitutional power to do to bring him to account. It is the UDP which failed miserably to bring an out of control leader under control.    

  9. SANDFLY says:

    Very good question from Mr. Alden. Now will Mr. Alden give us the same Minister of health that covered up Dengue fever? Or simply put, will this nation have a replay of the very same health minister that was less then competent? Voters have to know and early? That minister is a nice guy but no leader. He had no backbone to implement a smoke free invironment in our country.

    There are many questions that must be answered. We can't afford a repete performance of some of the mistakes that happeded under PPM. Dumping the corrupt for the stupid is not a good fit for these islands. We need real dialog to know what we are getting into. Elio, you stole my vote and rubbed my face in it with your support of self centered misleader. I am ashamed and angry. If I do anyhing it will be to campaign against you.

  10. Lewis says:

    Time to relax everyone. For those not in the know the Mayans advise us that the world will end on Friday. So any outstanding theft or DUI cases just go away. All is well.

  11. Anonymous says:

    Alden wants the country's parliament to dissolve so he can get his turn during early elections. lol.. how he knows the Governor will give him that previlege. The Governor and FCO have the power to declare full rule over these islands once parlaiment has been dissolve. That serious matter seems to be swept under the rug.

    • Anonymous says:

      "The Governor and FCO have the power to declare full rule over these islands once parlaiment has been dissolve".

      Oh, is that why Mac asked him to dissolve it?

      The FCO has the power to suspend the constitution and introduce direct rule at any time. It was more likely to do so while we had McKeeva as premier.