Archive for March 23rd, 2013

C4C candidate steps aside to avoid controversy

| 23/03/2013 | 68 Comments

Kent McTaggart candidate for Bodden Town (225x300).jpg(CNS): Kent McTaggart, who had announced his intention to run as a Coalition for Cayman candidate in Bodden Town, has pulled out from the political race and will not be seeking nomination on Wednesday. McTaggart told CNS that he did not want to cause the country unnecessary controversy, and acknowledged there could be a constitutional question over his candidacy. McTaggart has not been resident in Cayman for the last seven years because of the medical requirements of his special needs son. While there is an exemption for a candidate not to have been resident because of his own health reasons. it does not necessarily extend to dependents. 

McTaggart said this issue needs to be examined as the constitution is not providing for the special circumstances he faces, contrary to the bill of rights. McTaggart explained that, given the wording of the constitution, he felt it was best he did not run but the issue that is barring him as a Caymanian from running could also prove to be barrier to others in the future.

“I do not want to cause any more controversy for Cayman and so this time I am going to step aside and withdraw from the election race itself,” he said. “However, this issue needs to be examined. While there are exemptions for airline pilots, among others, it seems at odds with our values of supporting family life that I am excluded because it was for my son’s medical needs, not my own directly, that my family and I have had to live overseas.”

McTaggart explained that while his son was young his condition was such that he needed specialist medical care. Once he was a little older, however, the McTaggart family were able to return to Cayman but this means he has fallen foul of the seven year residency requirement.

“I am being prevented from running because I have a son with special needs and that cannot be right,” McTaggart said, noting that the problem is with the constitution and not the election law. McTaggart believes it is a human rights question because he is being denied the right as a Caymanian to run for office as a direct result of his son's disability. As this is a constitutional edict, it appears to trump Cayman’s new bill of rights, McTaggart said.

The would-be C4C candidate said that, although he could fight the issue, having taken extensive legal advice over a long period, he did not want to be the “one causing controversy when Cayman has already had more than enough of that.”

He added, “I will step aside this time and wait until 2017 but in the meantime I hope I can become involved in helping the country move forward after this election in other ways."

Disappointed, McTaggart said he hoped the authorities would take a close look at the constitution and consider rewording the document in order to provide for those who may have unique and special circumstances that deserve to be taken into consideration.

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Cop gets serious head injury

| 23/03/2013 | 85 Comments

_DEW3724-web.jpg(CNS): An officer from the Uniform Support Group is in hospital in a serious condition after being struck in the head during a disturbance outside an East End bar in the early hours of Saturday morning. A police spokesperson said that the officer was hit by an object when police responded to a call about burning tyres and drug consumption at a party at the Pirates Cove Bar. Police were first called to the scene at around 10:21pm on Friday 22 March. Officers from the Eastern Districts found a party was in progress at the bar and that there were in excess of 100 patrons in attendance. When the Officers returned to the police vehicle they found both of the front tyres had been punctured.

They called for additional officers from the Uniform Support Group, who were deployed to the scene and at around 1:42am an officer was knocked out after being struck with an object to the head. He was taken to the hospital, where he was admitted and underwent emergency surgery. The RCIPS said the police officer remains hospitalized in a stable but serious condition.

Detectives from Bodden Town Police Station CID are now conducting an investigation following the incident.  Anyone with information regarding this incident is urged to contact the Bodden Town Police Station at 947-2220 or CRIME STOPPERS at 800-8477 (TIPS)

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