Bush condemns ‘hypocrisy’

| 17/07/2014

(CNS): The opposition leader has said the premier's announcement that he won't be pursuing the promised electoral reform agenda is all the more hypocritical because of the amount of energy he gave to the idea when the UDP held the reins of government. McKeeva Bush said that when Alden McLaughlin was in opposition he dedicated all of his energies to 'one man, one vote (OMOV) and attempting to derail the government by colluding with Duncan Taylor, the former governor, in what Bush described as "undemocratic antics". The veteran politician said while he was trying to put the country on a sounder footing, McLaughlin was using electoral reform to disrupt his administration.

Yet now that the PPM leader has become premier, with twelve MLAs on the government benches (not counting the speaker) out ofa total of 18 members and in a position to implement change, he appears to have abandoned plans for electoral reform.

Bush told CNS Tuesday, "All my energies were focused on trying to get our country on sounder footing with projects that were good, getting people employed and bigger and sustainable reserves," he said. "But Alden's energies were on OMOV, electoral reform and derailing everything that the UDP proposed. Duncan Taylor and him joined together to push us deeper and deeper into an abyss, with undemocratic antics, of which they succeeded."

Pointing towhat he said were the "vindictive efforts" of the UK's representative at the time to smear him and his leadership, Bush said this was because he was prepared to, and continues to, stand up to the Foreign Office when it mistreated the overseas territories.

Comparing his own time in office to the current premier’s one year plus at the helm of government, Bush said the present administration is 'worthless' and it will soon become apparent to the entire electorate what is going on.

Bush said the decision by McLaughlin to U-turn over the introduction of one man, one vote, in single member constituencies when he was in a position to introduce the change proved the premier's "unreliability" and he said it spoke to "his character as a leader".

The whole of the PPM had made electoral reform a major campaign promise, Bush said, claiming it was an attempt to derail his efforts in moving the economy forward and to get Caymanians employed, while forcing the country to the expense of a referendum. "Now" the opposition leader said, "no OMOV and still a worsening economy."

Although Bush had held back for the first few months of the PPM administration on handing out extensive criticism, saying he would not be the objectionable opposition that he accused his long-time political foe of being, the opposition leader has become increasingly critical of the current government. He has recently taken it to task over a number of issues, including the marinas on Cayman Brac, the management of government boards and the financial services minister's cooperation over the new international regime of automatic disclosure in the offshore sector.

He has, however, taken particular aim over the hypocrisy he says is being displayed by the premier on electoral reform. During the debate on the issue in the Legislative Assembly in February, when Arden McLean, the member for East End, tabled a motion to change the elections law to pave the way for OMOV in SMCs, McLaughlin made his first public comment about the need for more consultation and the departure from OMOV in SMCs and the possibility of 'at large' candidates.

During the debate Bush said that in more than 20 years in politics he had never seen such a turnaround as that taken by the premier when he stood up to reveal the change of heart on electoral reform. Bush said he was “shocked” when he heard the premier talk about 'at large' candidates and changing the number of constituencies and warned the government that it would be held accountable for “this broken promise”.

Since then the premier has said on two further occasions that because he does not have the full support of his entire government for the electoral change, despite the PPM campaign promise, it is looking increasingly likely that the status quo will remain. While McLaughlin has implied that those objecting to reform are the non-Progresssive members of his team, Tara Rivers, Roy McTaggart, Winston Connolly, all three issued a joint statement this week saying they supported OMOVs and were looking forward to seeing electoral reform before the end of this term.

The independent member Ezzard Miller has also criticized the premier's position and questioned his leadership abilities, given his claims that his government is split over the issue as he demanded that McLaughlin lead as he is meant to do. He told CNS, that he had concerns the PPM election promises on major issues such as labour law reform, minimum wage and OMOV were “nothing more than sound bites to get elected”.

He added, “If the premier really believes it, he should lead.”

In the latest twist, however, Al Suckoo, a member of the PPM back-bench, has revealed that he will be filing a private members motion on the issue as he believes he has a duty to try and fulfill the election promise he made.

See related stories on CNS:

Suckoo to file OMOV motion

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Comments (36)

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  1. Anonymous says:

    I would prefer to keep the system as it is and add more voting abilities to the public.  Allow the public the ability to vote for the actual premier. Not just who would get in. Each person who is running would run for a particular position not just running and then hope to get I to a particular position. They are running for a position. 

  2. Anonymous says:

    Why does the Caymanian electorate and public at large take such divisive political and party lines on every single matter?? Hypocrisy is hypocrisy from whomever it emanates. Whatever the issue, what is good for one applies to the other. The double standards of this PPM Government is appalling and alarming. They have displayed this twice within the past two weeks. First by protecting CIAA Board interference with management despite clear evidence and now back- pedalling on the OMOV matter. Even if MacKeeva Bush's credibility is tarnished, it does not matter that it is he who is critizing this double-standards, the fact is that double standards and hypocrisy are distinctly being displayed.

    Why are we like sheep and can't see truth, logic and common sense? Makes be embarrased to be Caymanian. PPM and  UDP are both alike!! God help us to have a suitable third alternative come next election! Party politics will destroy Cayman! Can't you sheep see that???!!! 

  3. Anonymous says:

    Bush condemns hypocrisy…what on earth is this world COMING to.

  4. ThIs WrItInG Is VeRy IrRiTaTiNg says:

    Wouldn’t it be far easier to leave the voting districts as they are and allow each voter to cast only one vote?  In the districts with more than one member in the LA the candidates with the most votes would be elected to serve the people (ie top 4 vote getters in WB would be elected). 

    • Anonymous says:

      That would reduce the accountability even more. The priniciple point of SMC's is to have an accountable representative. But the draw back is that they could become too focused on happenings in their small community and forget to look after the wider issues/country. Hence the consideration of at-large or country-wide representatives.

      • Anonymous says:

        You are making no sense. First you say that multi-member constituencis with OMOV would reduce accountability then you go on to support at large representatives which by the same token must reduce accountability.  

  5. Anonymous says:

    Boo Hoo Hoo

  6. Anonymous says:

    He should have considered that before promising to implement it so he wouldn;t have to go back on his word. Just shows that he was promising things he really knew nothing about, other than it would get him votes.

  7. Anonymous says:

    It would take the hubble telescope to uncover all the levels of hypocrisy on display here.

    • AndAnother Zting says:

      Wow theybhavewoken up outa their embarrassment go PPMers ya na going far.

  8. Tim says:

    I am sorry but Alden is right. THERE ARE OTHER OPTIONS THAT COUL;D BE CONSIDERED TO ACHIEVE EQUALITY IN THE ELECTORAL SYSTEM.

    Look at Jamaica with its single member constituencies and look at the corruption and vote buying there and you will see what he is talking about. Here it will be very easy to influence the small numbers divided into 18 districts. It would be very easy through corrupt influences to get people to vote and influence the outcome of the election.

    I am not too fond with dividing the islands into 18 single member constituencies and yet we still end up with a Premier we don't want and a two party system. 

    • AnnaMouse says:

      We could just reduce the consituencies to about 7 and vote for a Premier and Deputy Premier cross island. That would shrink gov't by half at the bloated top level.

    • Anonymous says:

      People always look to Jamaica as they see it as a bad example on how elections and politics work.  Jamaica has not always had such bad representation but that is what it is today.  Look at Barbados and some of the other Eastern Caribbean countries that have not got that level of corruption but have the same system of elections.  Its not the election process that creates corrpution, its the politicians regardless of whether they are OMOV chosen or otherwise.  So dont mix apples and oranges please.

      Just because a persons does not like something does not make it wrong!

    • Anonymous says:

      Vote in 9 MLAs at large.

       

      Fewer MLAs.

       

      Only one voting district, namely the Cayman Islands (maybe with a slight concession for the Sister Islands).

       

      Much simpler, less costly, probably more efffective that the circus we have now.

    • Anonymous says:

       09:49.Why only Jamaica,why not look at the USA with its single member constituencies for example.( They are called congressional districts)

    • Anonymous says:

      Agree fully not a thing will change, if anything even more corruption will take place.

      Let it be as it is, just stop voting parties and vote your conscience no matter the party the candidate if with. If they have something to offer then vote for them and stop voting straight because you are told to.

  9. Anonymous says:

    Looks like BT are the only ones who voted the right guy in…

    Thank you Al.

  10. SERIOUSLY says:

    ONE THING THEY MISS OUT IN THIS ONE MAN ONE VOTE: – What happens when every district votes in their MLA but they have no direct part in voting in WHO SHOULD BE THE PREMIER ….. TALK ABOUT DEMOCRACY! ……………  I personally think before we rush in OMOV, the entire electoral system should be weighed with how democratic it is for the people of the Cayman Islands, and further amendments should be considered …… Now I don't agree with everything Alden says, but I do mind him wabbling on this issue when we have serious economic issues that will take the unison of the whole house to deal with.    

    • Anonymous says:

      I fully agreed with you. I wonder has any of the MLA members brought up those same points in the LA.

  11. ALL THIS TALK ON OMOV says:

    Thats not the only issue that is important in this country. Besides I believe there needs to be more inquiry as to how OMOV will effect our poli-tricks

  12. Anonymous says:

    "Undemocratic Antics" now that is absolute hyprocrisy coming from a man who hijacked the country's OMOV referendum counting all the no show abscentee votes as a NO vote. This is like the pot calling the kettle black. What a joke.

    • Anonymous says:

      The way it works a no show was a no, when you need 50 percent of the whole voting population to win, If you don't show up that no different the voting no. Unfortunate but true, if more people came out vote yes it would have won. If there 10000 poeple and the only votes were yes but it was only 3000 it still would have lost.

      • Anonymous says:

        12:31.A voter who fails to show upand vote is simply a "no show" and not a "no'"vote.For example a person who was unable to make it to the polls but intended to vote yes is certainly not a "no" vote,just a "no show ".

  13. Anonymous says:

    Surely he didn't actually use the word "colluding" did he?

  14. Anonymous says:

    Mac is against Alden using hypocrisy because that is his speciality.

  15. Anonymous says:

    Another fail by Mac. How about accepting responsibility for your own actions causing the economic destruction we saw during your reign?

    • Anonymous says:

      the economic destruction came from the PPM spending $320,000,000 on capital works( $124,000,000 on one school alone!)…money the country did not have. When Mac came in he was left with a massive overdraft to deal with…PPM put this country where it is now. Mac is not all good but this economic issue came from PPM….simple fact.

      • Anonymous says:

        Yes, keep burying your head in the sand. McKeeva Bush is as responsible for our financial situation as anyone. He has cost this country hundreds of millions of dollars on white elephants and awards of damages. Boatswain Beach alone costs this country $10m p.a. 

        • Anonymous says:

          You need to take your head out of the block of cement it is in.

          UDP did crap but so did the PPM,  We need to stop this bias behaviour and call them all out.

          We are not to be so blind with patriotism that we cannot face reality. Wrong is wrong, no matter who does it or say it.  

          I rest my case dear, but if you wish to continue to blame Mac and UDP for everything please do so because it will not change the fact that both govenments made huge mistakes, and cost this country hugely.

      • Anonymous says:

        14:20, since you are full of facts, perhaps you could tell us all who took the country from $320m to $800m+ in debt?

        I think there was another Administration in charge of our country between 2009-2013 but I can't remember who they were?

        • Anonymous says:

          UDP did their fair share but the comments before on about the PPM was pretty much the case too. Also remember all the new post PPM created? We now have duplications in CIG as a result. They need to get rid of them that is how we will save. We have a Treasury Dept. that handled all that before and still do now and we have PoCS that is how we need to downsize.

          Check out how many CFO and DCFO CIG have in total, also all the Human Resource Managers and assistants. Many are on contracts, get rid of them. Also consider all the Deputy Chief Officers position and policy advisers for policies that never get implemented.

          Add their salaries, that is of all the CFO and DCFO and their health and pension costs up and  then tell me it was not a hugh mistake. Like it or not that was all under the PPM govenment back in 2006 -2009 when what use to be Permanent Secretary and was changed to Cheif Officer – XXXXX

          Remember that Sports Symposium held and all the funds paid to the consulting agency to tell us how to restructure sports? Complete waste of CIG and our money all hot air as usual not a thing implemented except for the schools and look at all the issues we are facing with education. The then Minister of Education and Sports Alden McLaughlin allowed his CO to do as she pleased which was why PPM got voted out. 

          Please do not start with the "must be UDP suppoter crap"  because I am not. I am simply calling it like it is. Both parties have made huge mistakes Premiere position and all that…PPM pushed for that too via the consitution but guess they didnt realise Mac wouldget the pleasure of being the first Premiere.

          We need to stop swapping goverments and voting straight. A coalition govenment is what we need now to force them to work together and keep each other straight. Then we need to pray and hope they will do a better job and stand up for what is right no matter what, like Suckoo is.

          Until we hold them accountable consistently we will never get politicians willing to stand up for what is right no matter what,  and we will never reap the positive change our country desperately need. Even then we will still have some corruption but at least it will be to a lesser extend.

          Forget about party politics, vote for candidates with integrity and qualifications. Ones willing to work for their paychecks. Stop voting for them just because they are nice even when the period before all they did was collect a pay check and sit quietly for 4 years.  Be change you want to see!

  16. Anonymous says:

    Sad to say it but Alden is failing this country badly and the proof is that McKeeva is absolutely correct about the hypocrisy and lack of leadership being displayed by ppm. 

    • Anonyanmous says:

      I guess Alden is responsible for the mass status grants of 2003 that displaced three generations of Caymanians. Thankfully, many were smart to migrate to Europe and leave this place for the politicians, their children and grandchildren and the new set of caymanians that will deal with the politicians in the next elections.  

      • Anonymous says:

        No Mac primarily is the reason but the PPM had their names on the list too.  That is a FACTnot specualation, but Mac took all the flack as usual.

        Many said Mac was, is a dictator as leader of  the UDP. Is that not that the same thing happening now with the PPM and their leader the Premiere? Suckoo and Mr. Eden are the only ones willing to stand up against the Premiere with this OMOV.

        The others spouted off prior to elections….do you hear them now? All are quiet which is a shame because many of them like Finance Minister archer have been doing a decent job.

        Do you hear him and Minister Panton speaking up? Slence is all we are hearing. Continue delluding yourself that only Mac made mistakes and gave away status ans selling our country… it will not change a thing the others are doing while Mac continues to get the all the blame. 

        We need change, so new blood can get a chance. It will never change if people like you continue to beleive that only Mac made mistakes, 

        Our lives begin to end the day we remain silent about things that matter  becase we refuse to beleive that others are not perfect. In the end we remember not the words of our enemies but the silence of our friends.

  17. Anonymous says:

      Bush condemns ( hypocrisy)    This is the kettle calling the pot black !  People remember he is only trying to win back your heart and soul  for the next election . Next time remember you have tryed him and  what he did for himself and not for you or the Islands .