Archive for December 27th, 2012

Van runs down cyclist on West Bay Road

| 27/12/2012 | 28 Comments

(CNS): Police are hunting for witnesses and a male cyclist is said to be in stable condition after being hit by a van on the West Bay Road on Boxing Day afternoon. At around 2:58 pm on Wednesday 26 December, police said a GMC Savanah vehicle and a cyclist were involved in a collision in the vicinity of the St Matthews College dormitory on the West Bay Road. Emergency Services attended the scene and the cyclist was transported to the George Town Hospital.The cyclist who sustained injuries in the crash remains hospitalized. Anyone who witnessed the accident should call the George Town Police Station at 949 4222.

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20 more smashes during road safety campaign

| 27/12/2012 | 18 Comments

_DEW5196.jpgCNS): Despite efforts to improve the levels of safety on Cayman’s roads and to clamp down on traffic infringements, the police dealt with a further 20 road smashes in the week leading up to Christmas and in the middle of the RCIPS campaign "Stay Alive". Police said that during the third week 17 people were ticketed for speeding, nine for cell phone use and four for not wearing seatbelts. An additional 44 offences were also ticketed. Since the campaign started on 30 November, 24 drivers have been arrested for DUI and 230 tickets have been dished out for various traffic offences with a further 75 tickets for speeding.

“Members of the public are urged to be responsible road users over the holiday period and in particular to use designated drivers where necessary,” a spokesperson for the RCIPS said.

The police public education campaign will run until Friday 4 January.

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Five more suspected dengue cases investigated

| 27/12/2012 | 1 Comment

Aedes-Aegypti-3.jpg(CNS): Health care workers in Cayman continue to treat several people in hospital and as outpatients for suspected dengue fever as officials await confirmation on 24 results. Since the beginning of the year there have been 91 suspected cases of the disease transmitted by mosquitoes. Since 16 December there have been 5 new cases under investigation, public officials said this week. Of the 5 only one had travel history to an endemic area. No new results have been received from Caribbean Epidemiology Centre (CAREC) this week but this does not impact patient care as they are treated as if they were positive, officials stated.

There have been 31 confirmed cases this year 20 of which have been transmitted locally. 16 of the locally transmitted cases were residents of West Bay, 2 from George Town and 2 from Bodden Town.

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Mac visited 34 nations

| 27/12/2012 | 97 Comments

travel-guide-where-to-go.jpg(CNS): After he took office in May 2009 the former premier of the Cayman Islands visited at least 34 nations across the world, spending more than 403 days on business and a further 142 days of personal time away from Cayman — almost one third of the time he served as leader. Criticised for the amount of money and time spent off island, a partially granted FOI request by CNS to the premier ’s office revealed that McKeeva Bush took some 74 overseas trips as premier, from Greenland in the frozen North to Indonesia in the Far East. Venice, Paris, New York, Dubai and Shanghai are just some of the destinations he visited before he was ousted from office by his former colleagues on 18 December.

With more than a dozen trips to London, Miami and Jamaica, the premier’s overseas travel included major international meetings as well as “go sees” related to possible investments, many of which did not materialize, or trips to sign international tax exchange treaties. Dozens of different staff members accompanied Bush on the various trips at different times, some of which took the former premier away for as much as three and a half weeks.

Although the response to the freedom of information request, which came more than 75 days after it was submitted and following several breaches of the freedom of information law, the request was not complete. CNS had also asked for the costs of the trips but that part of the request was denied as the office stated that the credit card bills and receipts have been seized by the police and now form part of the enquiry. It appears that the office has no other way of knowing how much the numerous, and often lengthy, trips involving several staff members have cost the public purse.

CNS has requested an internal review, and although the ministry has not yet acknowledged that request, we intend to press the matter further in order to establish how much tax payers money was spent on international travel and to allow the people to decide if they got value for money.

During his time as premier Bush vigorously defended all of his overseas trips stating that they were all related to important business, promoting Cayman, addressing its position with the OECD, attracting investment or dealing with public finances among other issues.

See details released under the FOI request below.

Alert CNS readers have found more trips not mentioned in the FOI response:

Panama party cost $70k (CNS 6 July 2012) about trip at the end of May

‘We must move on port’ Bush says during Roatan trip (CNS 14 March 2012)

Minister calls Mac to London (CNS 12 November 2011)

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